Space 5 ft. Reach 5 ft.
Spells Prepared 3/2:
Carrying capacity 33/66/100
Combat Gear and sash 26.5
Combat Gear total 21 lbs
dagger(4) carried 4 lbs
Adventurer's Sash 3lbs - items in sash 2.5 lbs
Gear worn Clothes (5 lbs.)
Marrada is a slight, pretty woman with dusky skin and brown hair. Bedecked with small dried bones, the occasional crystal, some dessicated animal remains , small patterned twists of branch and stick, she looks the barbarian witch she is. The few civilized accoutrements she possesses only serve to emphasize her differences from the ordinary.
Marrada is very confident in her abilities and this comes across to those who meet her. However, this is sometimes tempered by the varied and astounding differences the mainstream society in Khorvaire has in relation to where she comes from.
Marrada wakes lying on wet rock. Rain falls steadily, washing away a residue of ochre symbols on the rock beneath her. Naked, she stands in the rain; she remembers nothing of the ritual, knowing only that it bound to her a spirit whose nature mirrored her own and whose mysterious power she now could wield.
Memories of childhood learning at her Kholi's knee, the patterns of wind and soil, the movements of the herd and flock, the power of the spirits above and below. Her burgeoning knowledge and intuition pleased and worried her Kholi, for she was pre-imminent in their tribe, but Marrada was soon to be her match.
No one tribe could contain two Kholi of equal power, Marrada well knew and her Kholi had many, many years of life left to her. Unwilling to be the cause of strife within the tribe and also not able to forsake her ability and connection with the spirit world, Marrada told the Kholi that she would undergo the Ghavii ritual, a ritual shorning from the tribe and also a final joining to her spirit guide; an absolute break, her destiny would be hers alone, not sharing that of her tribe and family.
And so the days long journey across the plains to the rock of elders, a weathered spire of rock rising from the flat earth, a sacred place. Though she does not remember, the ritual would have taken some days to complete, the final step leaving her alone on the flat rock to face the elements, to awaken and live or to succumb and die.
Turning about, Marrada takes in the vista of her home, grassy plains extending in all directions. A deep breath, then smiling, she sees her pack and other possessions sitting dry under a tree. Settling in the dry protection of the tree, she takes some food from the pack and eats, the ritual had left her famished.
Satiated for now, Marrada then waits as the rain continues to fall, washing away all remnants of the Ghavii ritual. Satisfied that no echoes of that magic remained, Marrada walked out into the drizzle and sat at the very edge of the rock. There she entered into a trance and allowed her spirit-self to roam the savannah, seeking the companion who would help guide her on her journey out into the world. In her spirit-journey she passed many spirits, wise turtles, clever foxes, and inscrutable hill cats; finally, she had stopped to admire a particularly picturesque scene, a small meadow bordering a spring fed creek. In the meadow, a number of rabbits fed on succulent grasses under the bright sun. Suddenly a dark shape plummeted from the sky, impaling a rabbit on its razor sharp talons.
A plains hawk.
Marrada thrilled at the majesty of the proud bird as it tore into the unfortunate rabbit's flesh. Stopping in mid-meal, the hawk turned its sharp gaze upon Marrada's ghostly form. < You'll do > a sardonic voice said in her mind.
Opening her eyes to the real world, the rain has lifted and Marrada lifts her eyes to the sky and sees high above a pinprick slowly revolving around the sun.
In a blink, the small dot descends and reveals itself to be a beautiful plains hawk, which flares its magnificent wings and settles quietly upon Marrada's upraised hand.
Marrada says "Greetings, I thank you for choosing to join me and sharing my destiny. I believe we shall call you ... Shivi (fierce in Marrada's language)"
From the bird, Marrada feels a sense of acceptance and love; and is thankful to have this beautiful animal as her companion. Rising, Marrada allows the bird to launch into the sky. Gathering her pack, she dresses and arranges her weapons and ensures her fetishes and charms are situated appropriately. Striding down the path to the plains, she glances skyward and smiles as she sees Shivi pacing her high above.
Her travels first took her to the town of Blood Crescent, where she was shocked by the sheer size of the town, huge and bustling in comparison with her tribe’s small nomadic villages. Thankfully the largely unruly inhabitants were very superstitious and gave her a wide berth when they saw her bedecked with the fetishes and charms of a plains witch.
Consulting with a fellow tribesman, she was advised to avoid the Shadow Marches and Droaam, but to head east through the Towering Wood into the Eldeen Reaches. Marrada took passage over water to Yrlag then set off overland again into the forest. Travelling ever eastward, Marrada never saw her observers but nonetheless realized that they were there, watching her, presumably the famous Rangers of Eldeen had noticed her entry into their territory.
Eventually she was visited at her campsite by one of these Rangers. An elf, Teeneth by name, approached with calm assurance. “Greetings, traveller, I must ask your explanation of your presence in our forest”. Marrada replied “I merely seek passage to the east; I try to avoid the dangers of passing through Droaam.” Nodding, the elf said “A wise choice, Droaam is not a place to travel lightly. We have watched you, and it is good that you respect the forest but be advised we are watching. Continue to the east, in two days walking you will come to a large clearing of the forest. Pass north east from there any you will reach Greenheart, our capital. From there the way east will be easier.” With a curt nod, the elf then walked back into the forest.
Following the elf’s directions, Marrada found herself in Greenheart, and was amazed at the beauty of the city. Here she found the inhabitants warm and friendly, though some seemed wary of the spirit they sensed laying behind Marrada’s gaze. Resupplied, Marrada bade farewell to the few acquaintances she had made and continued east.
In time, she came to the shores of Lake Galifar, and the crossroads as Niern. Trusting in her spirit, she launched Shivi into the air and allowed him to decide their path. Following Shivi, Marrada travelled the north road around Lake Galifar and passed into Aundair.
It was here, while she rested on the steps of one of the many massive stone houses in the city of Passage that the most curious thing happened to her. Quietly eating some street food, a shadow fell over her and a number of coins was tossed into her lap.
Looking up startled, Marrada saw a plainly dressed woman with a basket of laundry at her hip looking at her expectantly. Seeing the question in Marrada’s eyes and glancing warily at the hawk sitting on her shoulder, the woman said “If you please, read my lines?” Not sure she understood, she was still learning the nuances of the common trader tongue, Marrada asked “What you mean, Lines?” The woman, held out her hand and with her index finger traced the creased on her palm,” You read my lines, tell me my future.” Astonished, Marrada began to deny the woman, and then remembered the coins in her lap. With a bright smile, Marrada signalled the woman to sit to her left. The woman put down her basket and sat, looking at Marrada with relief. Taking up the woman’s hands in hers, Marrada began her “reading”.
She had seen displays such as this before; the mystic telling the customer what they wanted to hear, providing simple reassurance for a few coins. Marrada made sure that she did not draw upon her spirit’s strength to augment her performance, to do so would be disrespectful. No she kept this a performance, an act, one that has led to many such performances as she travelled the land of Khorvaire; allowing her to almost always have a place to sit and earn enough coin to feed herself for the day .
In Passage, Marrada hear tales of the city of Sharn, city of towers, floating towers. Wishing she could travel on the wondrous Lightning Rail, Marrada instead once again travelled the road by foot, following as Shivi led her now southwards.
Occasionally, Marrada would come across signs of the vicious was that had gripped this land only recently; burnt homesteads, a battleground only now returning to its natural state, rusted weapons sticking up out of the mud. Marrada was glad that she didn’t have to see the acts that caused such destruction.
Through Thrane she went, into northern Zilargo, finally into Breland. Arriving in the city of Wroat, Marrada was following her familiar when Shivi led her to the waterfront. Finding Shivi preening himself before a particular ship, presently loading cargo. Cocking an eyebrow at the hawk, Marrada said “Am I to take passage on this ship?” As always, Shivi merely looked inscrutable and smug.
With a smile, Marrada walked up to the man organizing the loading of cargo and inquired as to the destination of the ship and if he were taking on passengers. Passengers yes and the destination were east along the coast, bringing goods to many of the towns and cities along the coast, ultimate destination Q'barra. With a glance back at her familiar, Marrada made arrangement for passage on the ship.
The ship, having left the next morning, travelled down the Dagger River and the Hilt passing the glorious city of Sharn. Gazing at the city from the side of the ship, Marrada watched as it faded away to stern as the ship sailed on.
Making the occasional stop at town up the coast, the ship made good time, the weather was quite kind, good winds. Shivi kept the boys in the crow’s-nest company, the crew said that had he been a boy he’d have been a natural sailor. Marrada would smile at that, and then continue her reading of the first mate’s “fortune”.
On the tenth day out to sea, the ship turned in to a sheltered cove. “Sandpoint” the first mate called to her. Nodding, Marrada watched as the crew brought the ship into the pier. At this point, Shivi called out with his piercing cry and flew off of the crow’s-nest and landed on a post at the end of the dock. Knowing that Shivi had not done this before, Marrada took her leave of the Captain and crew, gathered her possessions and left the ship.
“Well here we are Shivi” Marrada said, walking through the crowd of stevedores rushing to offload the ship.
Somehow, a year has passed since that moment Marrada stepped off the small ship. Wandering through the town, trying to get her bearings, the people some staring at her obvious differences, but most merely smiling and wishing her a “Good morning” or “Hallo”. Unbidden, a answering smile came to her own face and Marrada looked up to where Shivi circled in the air far above, “Well done, my friend, well done.”
Although still somewhat uncomfortable in the wood and stone houses of these people, Marrada needed a place to live. Knowing that doing so at the Inn would become prohibitively expensive she asked about in her rapidly improving Common whether there were any home to let.
The only home that met her budget was located very close to the Old Light, the landlord, Ven Vinder owner of the general store said it was because people didn’t like living close to the “’ol girl” as he called the ancient light house. Looking up at the ruin, Marrada smiles as it reminded her of the rock formations of her home on the plains of the Demon Wastes. After a gently haggling session, Marrada and Ven agreed to a price and Ven took his leave.
Overtime, Marrada made the small house her home. Then, knowing such things matter in the civilized lands went to the town hall and ensured that she had to proper authorization s to conduct business within the town limits. Turns out all she had to do was pay a small fee and enter her business in the town register, witnessed by the town clerk of course. So, with shaky penmanship Marrada entered the line “Marrada, fortune-teller” and was a licensed business person in the town of Sandpoint.
Returning to her home, Marrada, using her people’s techniques, painted a shingle bearing the common sigils used by fortune tellers in Khorvaire. Nailing the shingle to the side of her home, Marrada waited for the first goodwife to appear at her door.
She did not wait long. Soon she had a number of regular customers; all a font of gossip and information on the going-on in the domestic lives of the people of Sandpoint. It was during these sessions, that Marrada first noticed the slight pressure that signalled the presence of her spirit patron. Only for a moment here or there, but Marrada never sought to bring the patron into play by using her powers to augment her “divinations”. If her patron was interested in anything particular, she could not tell, perhaps it was merely curious.
After that, Marrada set up her hours of business. She would see fortune seekers in her front room the mornings of Sul, Zol and Zor. Other days may see her set up near the market place, especially if a ship or caravan had arrived; most especially if a festival or celebration was underway. When not engaged in her “trade”, Marrada became a familiar sight wandering the countryside, learning this new land that had become her home.
Still, suspicions lingered. Though harmless, her fortune telling does rub some the wrong way. While she has made pains not to reveal the extent of her powers, there are those in the town who possess power and can tell that the same resides within her. Even her use of her non-magical healing arts when someone is injured cannot sway some negative feelings toward her.
Despite this, she has managed to make some friends in the town. Ven her landlord was very helpful with advice on the management of her business; but his constant questions about her home and culture fostered a lively friendship. Being different is often the strongest basis for a friendship and her friendship with Ameiko Kaijitsu began on that basis. Marrada can often be found in Ameiko’s tavern sitting at the bar talking with her friend.
A few friends, a respected if somewhat unorthodox position within the community; Marrada is content in her new home. Looking up, it would seem the Shivi is content as well; should her spirit patron decide she should be somewhere else, Marrada is sure that Shivi will let her know.
Disagreements : With Ameiko. She has a fascination with Marrada's "work", has convinced herself that Marrada has the gift. Perhaps she has some latent magical/sorcerous ability and can detect Marrada's power. Ameika has been badgering her friend to read her fortune,she want to hear that she'll be out of this small town and on to something bigger; Marrada has refused, she know she has no divinatory powers and does not want to lead her friend on or disappoint her.
Wanderer : He is a very no-nonsense kind of man, relying on his own skills, not relying on magic or gods to make his way in the world. However, Marrada does and she has grown to care for the man a great deal. One day while he was washing in a stream by their camp, she had taken his pistol and performed her people’s ritual of blessing upon it, tracing invisible runes along its length, beseeching her patron spirit to guide his aim. Whether any of this has any effect, she doesn’t know, she just feels better having done so; but knows he would probably be a bit angry if told.
Dalliances: Marrada’s tribe is quite frank when dealing with sexuality, when of age a member of the tribe with choose someone to intiate them into the ways of physical love. After that, while marriage is practiced and honoured, casual encounters between both sexes are common place. Entering into the “Civilized” world Marrada noticed different attitudes. Not wanting to me considered a prostitute or harlot she kept her tribe’s forwardness to a low simmer. Finally settling down in Sandpoint has allowed her the opportunity to spread her wings somewhat. A visiting sailor caught her eye on day and proved a nice diversion until he left on his ship. A brief affair with the son of one of the minor nobles of the area proved problematic, she cut it off, he grew upset and has caused some difficulty for Marrada from time to time. Finally, Marrada has realized that there is the possibility of romance with Ameiko, there is a tension there, but Marrada believes Ameiko’s upbringing may preclude anything going further; she does not intend to push the subject, though would not turn away should it evolve.
Many of Marrada’s tribe’s childhood stories revolve around the Hsonj, or giant men. Often portrayed as doltish enemies of clever tribe children, giants are a fairytale creature to Marrada.
In her travels, Marrada has heard tales of the many creatures that populate Khorvaire and the other continents. One in particular that for some reason fills her with dread are the tales of the eye tyrants or beholders. Just the idea of an intelligent floating ball of gas that can level a town...just sets Marrada’s nerves on edge.
However, she completely dismisses the idea of faerie dragons. Little mischievous dragonnettes flitting about the forest playing tricks on passerby; completely ignores the true nature of dragons, huge powerful beings indifferent to the goings on of mere humans and their ilk. By the gods, if the legends are true, a dragon is what the world is made of , and the sparkly ring floating above us...another dragon. Pfft, faerie dragons....nonsense.
235xp. Goblin fight on beach