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  1. #1
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    Post New Ershegh: The Heartwood

    It's been a while since I posted one of these things--and this particular ershegh write up is, frankly, one of the reasons why. I just couldn't seem to get the background for her down on the page in a way that I found satisfactory, plus finding a set of domain holdings was a pain, and the whole character write up was something of a headache.... In short, the whole thing blocked me up for a while. Now that this bugger is done I hope to get back to some sort of (ir)regular schedule for such things. We'll see.

    Per usual, it's going to take a few posts to get the whole thing.

    In any case, here's a new beastie:

    The spirit of the forest it is. A godling. She is of the trees and in them. We call her the Heartwood for that is where she lives and what she is. She goes is the heart of the forest. She is the soul of the trees.

    —-oooOooo-—

    The following account is that of Janna Kalevala, a Rjurik skald. She has told her story again and again in recent months, leading some to suspect it may be as much fiction as fact. However, there is very little evidence to suggest that Kalevala has fabricated the tale and the details mesh with the facts known about the ershegh. The kennings and poetic language of the skald’s tale have been largely excised from the following account during its translation for the sake of clarity.

    The voice came down from the branches of the tree. There was no face or mouth that I could make out. There was only a sound that seemed to emanate from the branches themselves like the rustling of leaves, or the slow swaying creak of the branches in the wind. Had I not known better, I might have thought the words were in my imagination alone. But the tree that the Heartwood embodied gestured along with the words, making it very clear which tree she inhabited. If not for the voice and her movement it would have been nearly impossible to tell the difference between this tree and any other in the forest.

    The voice itself was distinct enough, but it was wistful and detached, as if speaking were an afterthought or some half-remembered activity from youth. It was the voice of a daydreamer or one whose attention is otherwise fixed on things far off in the distance. Conversing with the Heartwood was like talking to someone who is holding several conversations at once, both listening and speaking at once, and many of those conversations might be with things beyond the minds of men.

    As we spoke the wind would play through the branches of the trees around us. They waved gently in the breeze like the hands of speakers whose gestures punctuate their speech. From time to time it even seemed to me as if the trees would subtly shift their positions. On more than one occasion my eye would be drawn to some barely perceived movement in the branches of the trees that surrounded me, but when I looked there was nothing but the normal swaying of the ancient forest in the wind, and though I never directly saw them move the placement of their branches and the very location of the trees themselves would change when my back was turned.

    I was there to negotiate with the Heartwood, for it had become dangerous to travel in the forests of ???. There were many tales of missing settlers and hunters. No one was certain if the Heartwood was herself responsible for the disappearances, but the rumors most often attributed them to her wrath, and the remains of certain badly pulverized people did indicate that her wrath had been aroused. The tales told by smallfolk are often little more than campfire gossip, but many times there is a kernel of truth to them, and in my heart I knew that I spoke now to the source of those disappearances. A peace between this creature and the people who must find the means to survive in her demesne must be found. We had been speaking for some time, and my efforts had proved ineffective.

    “I wish only to speak to you, Lady, I have not come to harm your forests.”
    “Does your presence alone not defile us? You are a burner, a firething, a child of flame, and where there is one soon there are many. Your kind will break the earth, spoil the waters, char the trees: my children. No, it is you must be pruned.”

    “Lady, I seek only your leave for safe passage through your lands so that my party and I might leave you in peace with our meager lives intact. We do not wish conflict with so great and powerful a ruler such as you.”

    “You are wise to recognize our power, human, but your words of flattery do not impress us. Power is a mortal thought. It means nothing to us. We know what the true nature of power is, while you know only its shadow.”

    “What assurance can I give to assuage your wrath, mighty one? Is there no test or deed that we might perform to appease you?”

    There was so long a pause at that I feared she might have vanished, for the Heartwood comes and goes through the trees of her demesne as easily as the wind through the leaves.

    “Much has been destroyed by your kind, mortal. If you would gain my favor you must make remittance. Our sistersouls the sidhe know more than you about our nature. You must learn to live as they do, walk as they walk, think as they think. There are many ways to live a life. We sing the song of earth and water. We sing the song of wind and sky. We sing the song of salvation, firesdaughter. What do you do but destroy?”

    “I can sing….” I ventured. I had no stratagem in mind. Her rant merely reminded me of the years I spent training my voice under the tutelage of eddic masters.

    “Can you, firebringer?” the voice from above said. There was a long pause. In the silence I tried to decide if I had offended the ershegh (and would, thus, soon meet my doom) or if she were amused at my temerity. “Very well. If you can sing then that is what you shall do. If your song pleases me then I shall allow you and your party to pass through my lands unharmed. But if you fail…. The roots of my forest will drink your blood. You must compose as you sing, little flame. I know the ways of your kind. I’ll have no song you’ve sung a thousand times to impress the dull ears ‘round a campfire. Sing a new song; a song to the trees that have so long suffered at the hands of your kind.”

    There is little greater motivation for a poet than the threat of death. I daresay I had never sung before as I sang then. The Heartwood was a patient listener if an unforgiving one. I composed my first lines, and cleared my throat. I started to sing, but faltered when the limb of a tree behind me crashed upon the ground.

    “No! None of your Fornyršislag trite, and not Ljóšahįttr either. Speak only Dróttkvętt. Begin again.”

    The dust had not yet settled from the impact of the giant branch that had struck only a few yards from where I stood, but I had no choice. I began once more. I know not how the words came to me, but I can only assume that my words were sent by some spirit of faith and inspiration, for after I started I did not stop for many hours. I can relate only some of what I sang. The rest was taken back by whatever kind god or goddess it was that gifted them to me.

    O, Wood wrath, gentle queen of trees.
    Hear me speak of these
    Things from aching earth below
    To arching sky doth grow

    I sang on. The words flowing through me unbidden. In truth, I know not how long I sang, but my voice seemed to grow stronger than I had ever heard it before. The forest grew silent around me. Even the wind seemed to have stilled, and I seemed to be alone in the world. I am uncertain how long it was that I sang, for I seemed to lose myself in the process. When I regained a sense of myself it had grown dark. I had been unaware of the passage of time. My throat burned and my lips were cracked. It seemed I had sung for many hours without stopping. It was moonless, and I could see nothing of the stars through the canopy of leaves overhead. I heard only the sound of my own breathing and the violent beating of my heart as if I had run many miles.

    The silence of the woods around me was frightening. I waited for what seemed an eternity for another great branch to flatten me, but the blow never came.

    “Very well, little one. You and yours have safe passage through my domain. You may go.”

    Let me assure you, I did not have to be told a second time to leave.

  2. #2
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    The Heartwood - Description

    There are many myths surrounding the origin of the being now called the Heartwood. Some myths indicate that the Heartwood is the soul of the forests themselves, traveling from place to place to oversee and protect the trees from the predation of humans, goblins and all those who would do harm to her "children." In other tales she is the spirit of a druid maiden who gave her life in the service of Erik and was rewarded by her patron with immortality as a spirit of the trees themselves. Still others credit the elves with her creation, describing her as the result of vast ritual magics meant to bring to life the spirit of the trees themselves as part of a scheme to regain control of the forests of the continent and, eventually drive humans and other interlopers from them forever. This plan has finally come to fruition and the human nations can now expect to be routed from the lands still coveted by the Sidhelien neighbors.

    What is known for certain is that the Heartwood is a relative newcomer, but her powers seem vast and nearly irresistible. She has gained considerable influence in the Highlands, and her reputation has spread throughout the rest of Cerilia. Her first known appearance was less than a year ago, though several events in the forests of Cerilia in the past decade could possibly be attributed to the Heartwood acting sereptitiously, it was not until she recently began confronting woodsmen that her existence was confirmed reliably.

    Despite her relatively recent appearance upon the political scene of Cerilia it is clear among those who understand such things that the Heartwood has been biding her time for years. After amassing a significant realm covertly from the vast magical powers of Rjurik lands under the very noses of wizards and druids alike the ershegh made her presence known only when she knew her authority could not easily be thwarted. Among the wise her appearance has caused much consternation, concern… and a grudging respect.

    --oooOooo--

    The Heartwood is known by many names in Rjurik lands. Among her many appellations she is called the Walking Tree and the Oaken Lady as well as various kennings of the term "Spirit Tree" such as used by skalds in their sagas. For instance, she has been called the Ghostwood or the Woodsoul in various narratives. In her darker moods she is sometimes called the Woodwraith.

    An appearance by the Heartwood can be used as the equivalent of a Magical Event random event. Considered a god by many who revere nature, her presence can also be used to portray a Heresy or Great Captain random event. In a domain level campaign the Heartwood is a regent in her own right, and she exerts political control over a broad area of the Rjurik Highlands. Because she considers it her mission to expand that control throughout Cerilia, she could appear in any forested region of the continent or in regions that have been deforested by expanding populations in order to reseed those regions and return them to their natural state. Those who live in relative harmony with the natural environment and who do not pose a threat to her own control over her domain are welcomed in the Heartwood's lands, but those who seek to destroy the woodlands (i.e. reduce the source potential of the provinces in which she has holdings) must do so at their peril. Strangely, there is no indication that the Heartwood has dealings with any nation of the Sidhe. Some have taken this silence as a sign that the alliance between the ershegh and Cerilia's elves is so strong as to require no explicit expression, while others suspect there may be some deep rift between the philosophy of the Heartwood and that of the Sidhe.

    The Heartwood

    Ershegh 13
    Huge Major Ershegh (augmented Rjurik human)
    Hit Dice: 13d10 + 52 (128 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 10 ft. (2 squares)
    AC: 16 (-2 size, +8 natural)
    Base Attack/Grapple: +13/+31
    Attack: Slam +10 (1d10 +10)
    Full Attack: 2 slams +5 (1d10 +10)
    Face/Reach: 15 ft./15 ft.
    Special Attacks: None
    Special Qualities: Animate trees, Commune with Nature, Energy Weakness, Travel
    Saves: Fort +12, Reflex +8, Will +6
    Abilities: Str 30, Dex 10, Con 18, Int 10, Wis 15, Cha 12
    Skills: Knowledge, nature +16, Survival +19
    Feats: Improved Natural Armor x6
    Environment: Any land
    Organization: Solitary or with companions (see below)
    Challenge Rating: 13
    Treasure: None
    Alignment: Chaotic Good
    Advancement: By character class
    Level Adjustment: —
    Bloodline: Bloodform (major), Travel (major)
    Bloodline in BP Format: Re(12/42) Invulnerable (7) Travel (2)

    The Heartwood takes on the form of a huge tree. When embodying a tree she may take on a vaguely humanoid appearance as her command of its limbs and movement is reminiscent of her original humanoid form, but she is much less humanoid than might be a treant, shambling mound or similar plant creature.

    When moving the Heartwood is lumbering and ponderous, so she prefers to stay in place and use her Travel ability to change location.

    COMBAT
    If roused to anger the Heartwood is able to animate nearby trees to fight for her while she fights using her giant tree limbs to pummel her opponents. The Heartwood will target those who employ fire first, spellcasters next and those who wield axes or other weapons associated with destroying trees after that. Because she does not die if reduced to 0 (or -10) hit points she will fight until “killed” at which point she will simply possess another tree. If her opponents are overwhelmingly powerful she will possess a tree far away from the site of her defeat and gather such allies she deems necessary to repeat the battle victoriously.

    The Heartwood counts almost all the woodland creatures in her domain as allies and supporters. She can call upon nearly any sentient in her realm to render aid and most will give it willingly. Even in those provinces where she controls no sources and has never made an appearance she is often recognized as a friend of the natural world, so natural and sylvan creatures will seek to aid her.

    If confronted with fire or by those using ranged attacks she will retreat and rally support amongst the creatures of the forests.

    Animate Trees: The Heartwood can animate nearby trees per the Animate Plants spell. This ability is useable 1/day.

    Commune with Nature: As a full round action the Heartwood is able to cast Commune with Nature as a spell-like ability. Over the years this ability has been used throughout the provinces within her domain and in many outside it giving her a familiarity with the natural surroundings of her lands unrivaled in Cerilia by all but the most powerful priests of the Emerald Spire. She can use this ability 1/day.

    Entangle: As a standard action the Heartwood can employ the Entangle spell as a spell-like ability.

    Energy Weakness: Fire based attacks do double damage to the Heartwood.
    Invulnerable: The Heartwood is not killed if her body is destroyed. However, her spirit cast out from the tree she inhabited to possess another tree within the range of her Travel blood ability (see below.) In order to kill the Heartwood her spirit form must be rooted in the tree she inhabits when it is destroyed by subjecting her to the equivalent of an Unwarp Wood spell before her life essence leaves the tree she inhabits. Note that the Heartwood is a huge object (requiring eight caster levels) for the purposes of this spell.
    In addition to her ability to transport out of a mortally wounded body the Heartwood cannot suffocate, drown, starve to death or otherwise die due to lack of air or nourishment. She is immune to all death effects from poisons, magic or massive damage. She will remain conscious and aware while at zero or negative hit points, but is only capable of making partial actions.
    Travel: Twice per day the Heartwood can inhabit the body of any tree of size huge or larger as a standard action. In effect, this allows her to teleport into any forested province in Cerilia, and many of the provinces that are not predominatly forest. Trees large enough for her to embody exist in many provinces have terrain types suitable for large trees, but since such trees are scarcer than they are in forested provinces the locations that Heartwood can teleport into are more limited, so she may not be able to appear exactly where she desires.

    The only provinces that are expressly barred to Heartwood’s Travel ability are desert provinces, those above the tree line or those that are otherwise barren such as the poisoned lands of the Basilisk.

  3. #3
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    The Heartwood - Domain

    The Heartwood
    Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
    Status: Not available for PC use
    Summary: The realm of the Heartwood is made up of source holdings scattered through the western Rjurik Highlands. Due to the Heartwood’s special relationship to nature she is able to collect regency from these holdings as if she were a wizard. In some ways her affinity to nature allows her to operate her source holdings as if they were province population levels in certain ways (see below.)

    Holding Level Province (Rating) Domain/Ruler
    Source 2 Aaldnjor (2/4) Jankaping/Alnor
    Source 3 Aaldvaar (2/5) Jankaping/Alnor
    Source 6 Rjutaffel (0/7) Jankaping/Alnor
    Source 5 Bjarkheim (1/6) Hogunmark/Freila
    Source 1 Djaalfund (4/3) Hogunmark/Freila
    Source 5 Fjoltyr (1/6) Hogunmark/Freila
    Source 0 Gundviir (4/3) Hogunmark/Freila
    Source 4 Hjolgrun (2/5) Hogunmark/Freila
    Source 6 Valkheim (1/6) Hogunmark/Freila
    Source 0 Sjarkhoelle (1/6) Rjuvik/Fulgar
    Source 2 Hrukk (3/4) BloodSkull/Thrakkazz
    Source 3 Zakkhur (2/5) BloodSkull/Thrakkazz
    Source 3 Rovan (1/6) White Witch
    Source 2 Solung Bank (1/6) White Witch

    Regency Generated/Accumulated: 42 RP/81 RP.
    Gold Generated/Accumulated: 0 GB/20 GB. Though her realm generates little income the Heartwood knows the hidden wealth of her forested realm and can produce goods and materials (or reveal the location of them) equal to 20GB in a matter of days. These items are in the form of rare herbs, valuable timber, and other natural goods. Turning her “treasury” into more practical form like coins may require the equivalent of a Finances domain action.

    Army: The Heartwood does not control traditional armies. Instead, the ershegh can muster several units of natural beasts and woodland creatures. Though made up of animals and other sylvan beings these units are the equivalent of levies in her provinces. She can must a number of them equal to her source holding level by spending RP in place of GB. If these units are destroyed within the province in which they are mustered she loses no more than the RP spent. However, if they are moved from their home provinces and destroyed the Heartwood loses a level of source in that province and the province itself loses a level of source potential. Source potential returns at a rate of one level per year in the Spring domain turn.

    The Heartwood does not reside for long in any of the provinces in which she has holdings. Her coming and going are difficult to follow, and most of those who have sought her out have not so much found her as been found by her.

    Rumors, Hints and Adventure Hooks
    The Forest for the Trees
    If the Sidhe are protective of their forests, the Heartwood is downright pathological about the subject. She considers the trees to be her children and defends them with a fanatical passion. Heartwood recognizes that the cycle of life requires that a certain number of trees be lost to natural events, and she has no real attachment to the bodies of her children once their spirits have gone on to occupy new ones, so she is willing to see wood used under certain circumstances. She also recognizes the value of responsible “forest management” and will allow a reasonable amount of logging to prevent forests becoming overgrown and vulnerable to catastrophic fires.
    She has no patience, however, for those who in her view would scour the earth of trees. Some human habitation is acceptable, even beneficial to the forests that she inhabits, but where she draws that line is far short of the point where most human inhabitants of the forests find themselves able to live for any extended period—at the point at which population levels begin to decrease the source potential of a forested province.

    The Heartwood might, however, be able to stimulate the growth of forests and teach the inhabitants of a province how to live in her realm in such a away as to prevent the increase in population from harming her forests, in a manner similar to the sidhe. Gaining her favor, however, is very difficult for she has an innate distrust of humanity (and other Cerilian races.)

    Bloodfruit
    In recent months the bloodlines of certain leaders of Rjurik clans have grown demonstrably stronger. Rumor has it that the trees inhabited by the Heartwood produce a fruit that is efficacious to the bloodline of those who eat it. The details of how this fruit is produced are varied. Some suggest that it comes about whenever she inhabits a tree that can produce fruit, while others seem certain that she must embody a single fruit-bearing tree for long enough that the fruit sprouts and grows ripe entirely under her influence.
    Fruit from a tree embodied by the Heartwood has the power to increase the bloodline score of a scion who eats it. Consuming the fruit acts as if the scion had committed bloodtheft upon another scion with a bloodine score of 42. The scion must eat the whole fruit himself, and an individual scion can gain benefit to his bloodline from eating bloodfruit only once in his lifetime. Eating bloodfruit a second time does not increase bloodline, but the scion runs the risk of poisoning his bloodline. He must make a DC 23 will save or be subject to the effects of Heartfire disease (see the Diseases and Infections Birthright supplement.)
    Bloodfruit must be eaten ripe and fresh. It loses its power to increase bloodline within 24 hours of being plucked from the tree. While magic can preserve the fruit itself beyond this 24 hour period, the power to increase bloodline is lost regardless of how the fruit is preserved.

    Mother’s Nature
    No one knows how the Heartwoods came to be, but a man from Hogunmark is claiming he knows her origin. Sören Karelia says he is her son or, rather, that she is the remnant of his long lost mother, a fanatical skald who forsook her traditional neutrality in favor of a pathological worship of Erik whose views on the preservation of nature were considered extreme even amongst the most zealous of that god’s worshippers. Eventually, her constant prostelytizing earned her the animosity of the people she trusted the most and she was driven from her home in the cold of winter. When he discovered what had happened, Sören followed her into the snowy wastes and found her nearly frozen to death in the hollowed out trunk of a tree. As he gathered wood to start a fire the tree that sheltered her was struck by lightening and, though he never found a body, Sören believed his mother had been killed.

    It is unclear if this story is the Heartwood’s true origin, but if it is this information might be used to influence the ershegh for it appears she has no memory of her previous life.

    Hold that Taiga
    Under the supervision of the Heartwood some human populations may increase without damaging the source potential of the provinces they inhabit in a manner similar to elven population expansion. However, the ershegh demands total control over those populations, their reproduction, trade, commerce and use of resources. If a population submits to the authority of the Heartwood and abides by her strictures in all things then human population levels may rise to level 2 without damaging the source potential of a province. In order to do so, however, the province must be entirely forested, and she must control all the source levels.

    The Heartwood is also able to cancel a level of source potential in a province that has been lost to population increase. After both these conditions are met she (or another regent) can perform the domain action to increase the population level followed by a second domain action performed in the following Spring.

  4. #4
    Ehrshegh of Spelling Thelandrin's Avatar
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    Looks good, Geeman! Now all you have to do is get it all onto the wiki

  5. #5
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    At 02:06 AM 5/31/2007, Thelandrin wrote:

    >Looks good, Geeman! Now all you have to do is get it all onto the wiki

    I`m putting all of the awn-/ersheghlien I`ve written up into a PDF
    file that`s been "in-progress" for a long time.... I`ve got one more
    to finish, a monster write-up and then the first draft is good to go,
    so I hope to get it done in the next few weeks now that my schedule
    is evening out a bit.

    Gary

  6. #6
    Ehrshegh of Spelling Thelandrin's Avatar
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    Well, please do send it to me. I'd like to read about new awn/ehrsheghlien, considering I've invented a few myself

  7. #7
    Senior Member ryancaveney's Avatar
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    This is wonderful stuff, Gary! I will definitely be stealing this. =)

    > Janna Kalevala ... Sören Karelia

    So where's Elias Lonnrot and the Witch of Pohjola? =)

    > the remains of certain badly pulverized people

    I would rather have said *well* pulverized people. Mashed human makes excellent mulch.

    > Your kind will break the earth, spoil the waters, char the trees... No, it is you must be pruned.

    Ahhhhhh. =) I LOVE this!

    > Our sistersouls the sidhe know more than you about our nature.
    > You must learn to live as they do, walk as they walk, think as they think.

    This is extremely well-timed, given the discussion Kenneth and I were just reviving on my theories of the nature and origin of half-elves. That easily decides her relationship to the elves in my Cerilia: they turned her into a tree, as part of the plan some of them have to slowly convert the humans into half-elves, so they can live in harmony with nature. Of course, any who remain stubbornly discordant must be pruned.

    > Still others credit the elves with her creation, describing her as the result
    > of vast ritual magics meant to bring to life the spirit of the trees themselves
    > as part of a scheme to regain control of the forests of the continent and,
    > eventually drive humans and other interlopers from them forever.

    So, were you thinking of me when you wrote this? ;> Many thanks for the idea, in any case.

    > Ehrshegh 13

    Since she was once a druid, why does she not have any druid levels?

    > Animate Trees... 1/day. Commune with Nature... 1/day.

    That seems far too few uses to me. I'd make Animate Trees 3/day and Commune with Nature 1/hour, if not at will.

    > she has been called the Ghostwood or the Woodsoul

    I think your kennings are insufficiently poetic. My standards of comparison are things like "ring-giver" and "whale-road", which are descriptions of actions taken by or occurring in a thing. Therefore, I'd have the skalds call her things more like "Axebreaker" and "Firequencher" and "Hunter-of-Hunters".

    > the ershegh can muster several units of natural beasts and woodland creatures

    Some might be levies, but others should be distinctly more dangerous: consider a unit of wolves, wolverines or bears, for example. As an existing unit type, take a look a the Sphinx's Cats warcards from Blood Enemies.


    Ryan

  8. #8
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    Thelandrin wrote:

    >Well, please do send it to me. I`d like to read
    >about new awn/ehrsheghlien, considering I`ve invented a few myself

    No worries. When it`s done I`ll put it up so
    everybody in the BR community can get at it. It
    looks like it`ll be too big to email, so I`ll
    have to upload it to some site. I`m sure Arjan,
    master of all things eBirthright, can get it into
    the downloads section one way or another.

    At 07:07 AM 5/31/2007, ryancaveney wrote:

    >This is wonderful stuff, Gary! I will definitely be stealing this. =)

    Glad to hear it.

    > > Janna Kalevala ... Sören Karelia
    >
    >So where`s Elias Lonnrot and the Witch of Pohjola? =)

    I`d tell you but then she`d have to kill me....

    It`s nice when people get the references.... For
    those interested have a look at:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalevala

    > > the remains of certain badly pulverized people
    >
    >I would rather have said *well* pulverized
    >people. Mashed human makes excellent mulch.

    Is it possible to NOT think of the orc getting smashed in Two Towers?

    > > Your kind will break the earth, spoil the
    > waters, char the trees... No, it is you must be pruned.
    >
    >Ahhhhhh. =) I LOVE this!

    It`s a minor nod to Sid Meier`s Alpha Centauri in
    which the planet itself says, "You waited so long
    to heed us, earthdeirdre, Almost we pruned you,
    as we may yet prune your branches."

    > > Our sistersouls the sidhe know more than you about our nature.
    > > You must learn to live as they do, walk as they walk, think as they think.
    >
    >This is extremely well-timed, given the
    >discussion Kenneth and I were just reviving on
    >my theories of the nature and origin of
    >half-elves. That easily decides her
    >relationship to the elves in my Cerilia: they
    >turned her into a tree, as part of the plan some
    >of them have to slowly convert the humans into
    >half-elves, so they can live in harmony with
    >nature. Of course, any who remain stubbornly discordant must be pruned.
    >
    > > Still others credit the elves with her
    > creation, describing her as the result
    > > of vast ritual magics meant to bring to life
    > the spirit of the trees themselves
    > > as part of a scheme to regain control of the forests of the continent and,
    > > eventually drive humans and other interlopers from them forever.
    >
    >So, were you thinking of me when you wrote
    >this? ;> Many thanks for the idea, in any case.

    I didn`t really get into this in the write up
    (though it could be relevant to the Rumours...
    section) but I imagine the Heartwood liking
    elves, but the Sidhe themselves having a
    fundamental distrust of her. Her ability to
    "inhabit" trees is fundamentally disturbing--even
    sacrilegious, if that term can be used to
    describe Sidhe attitudes--to them. To them her
    ability smacks of possession, kidnapping, maybe
    even rape or the next thing to the animation of
    the dead. Despite her motives and ideals, the
    Heartwood is a very different beastie from the
    Sidhe and her powers are the kind of thing that
    threatens the very root (pun intended) of Sidhelien theology and philosophy.

    That`s why she has no direct relationship to the
    elves in this write up. That and the fact that
    her realm is made up of source holdings, which
    would prove problematic to the Sidhe wizard community....

    > > Ehrshegh 13
    >
    >Since she was once a druid, why does she not have any druid levels?

    In several of my awn-/ersheghlien write ups, the
    character only gets levels in the character class
    I use to portray their transformation without
    levels in some other, standard character class if
    I imagine that character dying as part of his/er
    background. In this case, since her "human form"
    was destroyed by a lightning strike on the tree
    in which she was taking shelter her body was
    killed and her soul took up residence in the
    tree(s) around her in a rather dramatic,
    Frankenstein meets the Sandman or Dr. Manhattan
    kind of way. She wasn`t raised from the dead so
    much as cast into wood--and quite possibly incompletely.

    Honestly, I made her a druid only because I
    thought that the most appropriate. (The original
    idea was that she was going to be a bard, hence
    her knowledge of eddic poetry forms.)

    > > Animate Trees... 1/day. Commune with Nature... 1/day.
    >
    >That seems far too few uses to me. I`d make
    >Animate Trees 3/day and Commune with Nature 1/hour, if not at will.

    That`s all I could squeeze out of the character
    class powers.... Don`t want to cheat my own
    system _too_ much.... 3/day is reasonable,
    though, if you like. (It might add 1-3 levels in
    the ershegh class, though, if I were to write it up that way.)

    > > she has been called the Ghostwood or the Woodsoul
    >
    >I think your kennings are insufficiently poetic.
    > My standards of comparison are things like
    >"ring-giver" and "whale-road", which are
    >descriptions of actions taken by or occurring in
    >a thing. Therefore, I`d have the skalds call
    >her things more like "Axebreaker" and "Firequencher" and "Hunter-of-Hunters".

    Kennings do tend to be further afield than mine....

    > > the ershegh can muster several units of
    > natural beasts and woodland creatures
    >
    >Some might be levies, but others should be
    >distinctly more dangerous: consider a unit of
    >wolves, wolverines or bears, for example. As an
    >existing unit type, take a look a the Sphinx`s
    >Cats warcards from Blood Enemies.

    Good point. Separate stats for such a unit would be appropriate....

    Gary

  9. #9
    Ehrshegh of Spelling Thelandrin's Avatar
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    Unless it's on the order of 5-10 Mb, Yahoo will easily send and receive emails that large. You can of course upload it yourself to BR.net - it really shouldn't be difficult

  10. #10
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    At 11:00 AM 5/31/2007, Thelandrin wrote:

    >Unless it`s on the order of 5-10 Mb, Yahoo will easily send and
    >receive emails that large. You can of course upload it yourself to
    >BR.net - it really shouldn`t be difficult

    I don`t know off the top of my head what my ISP and email service can
    handle, but regardless of that it`s got a lot of graphics, so it`s
    around 4MB as a Word document right now. I still have a bunch of
    graphics to add, though, so it`ll more than likely be a good 5-6MB at
    a guess. My PDF converter seems to make PDFs about x3 as large as
    the original Word document, so it might be as much as 15-18MB, but I
    haven`t really experimented with it much, so I can`t really say how
    big the final file will be. There are also a couple of smaller
    documents that I want to include with it; one on the use of Cerilian
    diseases and another on Cerilian poisons. Those are small, but still
    round out to another 0.5-1 MB.

    I`ll probably just RAR it up and post it to rapidshare. That`d be
    easy for everyone.

    Gary

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