It was night time in the City of Ash and it was alive with revelry.
Every table in every bar on every street corner found itself packed with the smelly, sweating, and ravenous patrons one would expect for a night like tonight; for tonight was a night unlike any other. Today marked the anniversary of the horrid Blight War many centuries ago after all. The patrons dug into their food with a rabid intensity as onlookers waited anxiously for their meals to arrive, jealously alive in their eyes, while the rest of the crowd drowned themselves, mug after mug, with the various alcoholic drinks available; mostly mead and Something Else, a local favorite. The floors looked as if they were assaulted by the God of Decay with half-eaten chickens and gods-knows-what littering the floor while bile and unknown liquids poured forth like a torrent of awfulness. This was expected. This scene is one that many a soul has traveled to be seen. While in normal times owner would be appalled to see the state of his bar, the bartender looked on with a smile on hand for today was the day everyone celebrated, and nobody was upset. Unless of course, you knew better.
No one alive today experienced it, but the stories are still remembered, albeit seldom spoken in whole, by the bards, and by the elders. They spin a tale of rotting corpses stumbling through the countryside, whole villages being abducted and transformed into monsters, and the near defeat of the living at the hands of plaque. They know the stories of many a great hero, many that died and fewer yet that lived, that helped curb the tide of the assault on the mortal races. They also know that today was never a day of celebration. Today to them is a day of remembrance. Remembering the errors of the all the races that led to the blight, the errors of commanders who led their soldiers to slaughter, and the greed of the many who prayed on the few still living during it all. Today they remember and look on at the parties with a stern gaze and speak a cautionary tale to those who will listen.
It was such an elder who found himself sitting on a famous corner, deep in the heart of the City of Ash, judging the crowds from a distance. As he sat, he was approached by a young man in search of a tall tale. The man towered over the frail build of the elder, though he approached with a smile and asked if a seat next to the old man was taken, to which the old man responded no.
"I hear you know a story or two about the Blight Wars, old man," the towering individual asked as he sat down.
"Old man," the elder asked, "I'll have you know I am no older than your parents may be, are they so old to you?"
"I meant no disrespect, elder," the towering man said with a chuckle, "I am a student at the great magic school at Itos, and I and my fellow classmates have traveled far to this city to hear the tales of the war. I have been told you know a story or two, and I would like to know where we went wrong in the past."
"Not interested in the parties," quizzed the old man.
"No, especially not if I can learn something to tell my friends back home," the towering man responded.
The old man smiled weakly and pulled his posture straight as he did. "Perhaps there is hope for you youngin's after all," he responded with a wink. "This is a story of heroes, who did not know they were such at the time, who came together and saved all life as we know it. They came from all walks of life, some of noble pursuits and some not, that threw their past grievances behind themselves for a common cause. The war was terrible in all accounts, but I will start my story off at where It all started, right here in the city of Ash, three hundred and seventeen years ago; though the city went by a different name back then. The city of Athenvu, under the steadfast watch of her king, was a prosperous trading town that was turned to ruin, " the old man paused as his head tilted to the left, "that was home to," pausing again, this time standing up, "what is that ruckus?," the old man stopped speaking as he rose to his feet.
The towering individual turned his head, the same direction the elder did seconds before, and listened. "Heyyyyy, I am soo not drunk guys – Where's my food – where are we- what did – for – somebody needs to -I think you've – did you grab my – what is the mean- how oft- wherein th-" The more the towering man listened, the less he heard and the less he understood. He turned his attention the old man, who was visibly shaking now, and asked; "what do you hear old man?"
"Don't you hear it? The screaming," he answered back.
The towering man listened again, and this time he heard it; growing louder every second he did, the sounds of people panicking and shattering objects, blood-curdling screams that filled the nights' air only to be silenced, and he listened as it was getting closer and closer and closer. "Stay behind me elder," the towering man shouted as he stood up and his hands erupted into flames, "I will protect you," he promised. Though promise as he did, the towering man's voice was soon added to the melody of screams, as the chorus of horror began to fill the air and erupt throughout the City of Ash. From miles around people could see the fires that raged that night, and even further could people see the plume of smoke the next day. And to this day, nobody knows of what befell the people that day.
Though this did not go unnoticed; almost immediately after hearing the fate of the City did the Council of the Combined races hold an emergency meeting where it was decided that an Inquisitor unit was to be set out to investigate what happened there.
- - - - - - -
The Basic idea for this story:
We are going to play the role of Inquisitors for the Council of the Combined Races, sent in to investigate the destruction of the City of Ash a few days prior and report back on what we find. As the name suggests, the Council is made up of every race present in our world; formed after the Blight War to fix many of the errors that allowed such a tragedy to occur in the first place. For all intents and purposes, the Blight Wars is a war fought against a demonic force that corrupted the populace into monsters that were then sent to ravage whole cities; and the world as a whole. It took the combined efforts of all the races, as well as a miracle, to stop it and save life as we know t. The Council of the Combined Races was set up afterward to thwart off any potential future assault on the living, allow an easy way for nations to communicate, and thus far they have been successful.
Setting for the story:
This will be a high-fantasy, though potentially dark, story. I will add more information on the Blight Wars, as that will be a very important topic for the RP, if this reaches the OOC stage of things.
I intend to allow all DnD races (a hard no on custom races but you can try and change my mind).