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July 9, 2001

The Identity of the Ghost, Revealed

Posted by Mirabel to the Darkmor Forum of Heaven's Forge:

"A small but hardy band gathered at the Hospital today to track down the secrets of the restless spirit plaguing Heaven's Forge. I had hired the grandmaster Cartographer Pabo to lead our search, and the group was prepared for whatever might stand between us and learning the truth.

Pabo led us to the first map, it led to a small island off the coast, not even large enough for a house. After digging up the chest and dispatching many beasts, I uncovered a journal wrapped in a magical cloak. I handed it to Opalescense to peruse while I continued sorting the items, and she read portions of it aloud to the group.

The journal was written by a man named Garolyn Megiltura, and it detailed his life as Swordmaster to King Joran, elven ruler, long ago, of a city near what is now Yew... and also the elf we had discovered a while ago to be Sleath's father! If this Garolyn was the ghost, it certainly explained how he knew of Sleath, myself, and Darkmor... but it did not explain his hostility. As Opal continued to read, however... She discovered that Garolyn had not approved of the political marriage between Joran and his shadow elf Queen.. and that this had led him to plot against the lady. We dispatched the last of the monsters and, closing the journal, warily moved onward to the next map.

This second map led us deep into the jungle. The combat was just as fierce, and we found a second book.

We returned to the hospital to read its contents in a safer environment, as one should not dawdle in the jungles.

This journal was signed 'Garolyn Saurar' - which means, in elvish 'Foul One'. We all listened raptly as Opal read.. Sleath became more and more upset as he heard of Garolyn's traitorous acts toward his family, and as the journal detailed the kidnapping of the Queen, the treachery of the Drow who murdered King Joran, and the birth of Sleath's brother in captivity... He became very upset and rushed from the building. I followed but could not find him, he had disappeared into the valley. Opal was also becoming rather upset, but it was not clear exactly why. I assumed she merely was disturbed by the obviously demented nature of the journals. We moved on to the third and final map, without Sleath as he had not returned, all of us feeling a bit apprehensive.

The third map was also in the jungle, and as we were missing Sleath and a couple of others who had helped on the earlier maps, we were a little shorthanded, and had some people visit the spirit realm briefly. We quickly recovered and collected the items from the chest. This time, there was a box. It contained a journal and a pair of earrings with 15 rubies set in an intricate setting. We returned to the hospital, and divided up the money accumulated from the slaughter of the chest guardians, because several people needed to leave. It had been a long day. Opal, Pabo, Taliesin and I went off in search of Sleath, and we found him over the ghost's burial site in the cavern in the Valley. He was waving his kryss at the air and screaming 'Show yourself! Murderer!' -- and I worried for his sanity.. but then the ghost appeared. Opal read the journal aloud, and the ghost alternately cavorted around, unrepentant.. argued with Opal and Sleath, who could speak to him.. and seemed to genuinely mourn some of his actions. He seemed confused, and not entirely in control of his mind.

The third journal detailed the events Janilla had spoken of last week, the prisoner revolt and Garolyn's part in it... and ended with Garolyn's ultimate refusal to accept responsibility for any of his life's actions. He said he was "blessed" with the ability to choose the right side.. and wise enough to know when to leave. It would seem he was a bit too late in leaving the Bloodswords, as it resulted in his demise.

The final sentences of the journal explained the ruby earrings in the box. They had belonged to Isabella, the shadow elf Queen, mother to Sleath. They were a wedding gift from her husband. Opal grew very pale as she read it, and reached beneath her tunic to reveal the necklace she wore. It, also, was described in the journal.. the second part of the set Joran gave his bride. And the only part Isabella managed to hold onto in her flight from Garolyn. It had been given to Opal by her mother! This, along with other evidence, confirmed it.. she and Sleath were both the children of Isabella. Half-siblings. The lady did not die in the woods near Britain. She had managed to survive, make a life for herself, and bear a daughter. Opal and Sleath seemed unable to absorb this new information immediately. Time will tell what it means.

We were left with the decision of what to do with this ghost. Sleath, for his part, wanted to see Garolyn's soul suffer eternally. He refused to have anything to do with the thought of resurrecting him, and told Opal that it was her decision. Leaving Opal and I alone with the ghost, he returned to Darkmor. Opal's compassionate nature overtook her, and with a great effort, she restored him.

Garolyn, once called Swordmaster, Foul One, Betrayer of Lord and Land... returned to the land of the living at the hands of those who had every reason to hate him for what he had done. Perhaps he will find some redemption for the crimes he has committed. I think, however, he had best stay away from Darkmor and its Lord."

Posted by Hazard [EiC] at July 9, 2001 7:42 AM

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