Shadow's Fall

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Intro

Shadow's Fall was event that started 10/8/2010 with the following prologue on the Dragonrealms website Home Page:

The Priestess kneels next to the cot of an old woman, chanting a simple, mournful prayer in a clear, high voice. Other cots, occupied and unoccupied, are situated at intervals throughout the hospice hall. The Priestess's pale hand gently clasps the woman's gnarled one, her free hand caressing the woman's face as gently as a lover.

The woman's eyes are open, but sightless, her mouth slightly agape. Drool glistens at the corner of the old woman's mouth, but the priestess carefully daubs it away before it can long mar the old woman's dignity.

Finally, the Priestess stops chanting, a hush descending over the area. The woman's eyes focus on the priestess for the first time, a tiny smile illuminating her weathered face. Then the old woman closes her eyes, and the stillness is absolute. The old woman's grip tightens on the Priestess's hand briefly before the old woman relaxes in death.

It was then that the Priestess had a vision, a gift from the Gods.

Armies of undead, their provenance unknown, descend upon and ravage the lands. The hospice where the Priestess plies her trade overflows with the dying, and there is little she can do to give them the peace of Eylhaar, as disease and pain and untold suffering wrack all the people of the Five Provinces. Vultures literal and figurative descend upon the lands, preying on the fear and chaos.

But the gods provide the means to avert disaster along with the terrible vision. Eylhaar's blessing will protect the people from the worst of the horror, allowing those who cannot fight to escape, and fighters a better chance to combat the menace.

The Priestess must put aside her work and bestow the blessing of Eylhaar upon as many people as she can, or all is lost. She must make them listen, and understand, before it is too late.

Events

The cleric in the story is Priestess Morlaena.

She came warning of invasions by undead. So far there have been several attacks, by creatures such as Aboninable Umbral Halflings.

The Blessing

Morlaena has offered a blessing from Eylhaar that apparently stops the creatures spirit damaging attacks. It can be passed from one player to another by having them kneel and BLESSing them.

Messaging

The shadows around your face absorb into your skin, and you feel different somehow. (Successful blessing)
The shadows fade from around your face. (Failed blessing}


You consider blessing <person> again, but you realize that the process has already begun.

You move to bless <person>, but you realize that he is already in the warm embrace of the blessing.

The Price

However, those affected have noticed that periodically they lose a very small amount of health or spirit. These could be connected.

Recently, a person who was most likely not blessed has noticed the spirit/health loss as well. It may instead by a long lasting affect of being hit by the creature's spirit attacks.

10/31

You feel an abrupt shock race through your entire system, and feel like your entire being is being wrenched out from your body by some ethereal force. Dark purple shadows swirl around you, no longer protective but malevolent. You hear a low, male voice chuckling at the edge of your perceptions and see something small skitter across your vision near your feet. The wrenching feeling builds your soul and your body are being squeezed and their energies stolen from you. Just as you feel the force is about to take everything you have to give, you are released to fall exhausted to your knees.

Verbs

In addition, the blessing seems to affect a number of verbs:

1) You give <person> a brief hug. A very faint but somewhat odd smell wafts from him, somewhat akin to carmelized sugar.
<Person> just gave you a hug. You feel somewhat odd, like you'd been eating too much sugar, but it's nothing too bad.
2) You give <person> a hug, and suddenly everything feels right with the world.
<Person> just gave you a hug. Suddenly everything feels right with the world.
  • LEAN: You lean on <person>, but you quickly slip and fall on your behind, like you were leaning on something very slippery. Weird.
<Person> attempts to lean on <person>, but slips and falls on <his/her> behind instead.
  • LICK: You lean over and lick <person>. <He/She> tastes like moldy apples! Yuck!
<Person> leans over and licks you, then wrinkles <his/her> nose. Apparently <he/she> thinks you taste bad.
1) You poke <person> lightly in the shoulder. Several faint wisps of delicate white light drift upward right from where you touched <him/her>.
<Person> pokes you lightly in the shoulder. Several faint wisps of delicate white light drift upward from your shoulder, vaguely resembling a dove's wing."
2) You poke <person> in the center of the forehead, and suddenly she stares forward, looking very slack-jawed. Maybe <he/she>'s been hitting the absinthe a little too hard.
<Person> pokes you in the center of the forehead. Suddenly, everything becomes so very clear! Divine awareness is yours! ...but only for a moment.
  • TICKLE: You start tickling <person>. For some reason, you feel very ticklish yourself now! You fall to the ground and start rolling around, laughing.
<Person> starts trying to tickle you. However, <he/she> doesn't get very far before falling to the ground in a fit of giggles!

The Creatures

The Gates

At one time after the invasions started, she was with a large group of people at the Langenfirth temple. Someone cast a moongate which opened as a "Shadowy Arch". This led to a "Plane of Shadows".

Example of the moongate corruption:
Ezrehiel gestures.
Ezrehiel gestures at the ground beneath him, and thick streams of shadow begin to fly from his body. The shadows coalesce into a grand arch.


You gesture. You concentrate your energy on your Xibar moonbeam, but black clouds in the corner of your eyes distract you. The shadows seem to take on a life of their own as they swirl from your body, flying into a rectangular pattern at your feet. As the shadows take a more definitive form, you begin to recognize the shape of a grand arch

Plane of Shadows

Inside the plane were different zones, such as a desert, a grove, a meadow, and a "Town Grey", complete with pond.

[ Plane of Shadows, The Town Grey]
A small path of unsubstantial, white grass leads to a narrow stretch of cobblestones between the grass and the privet hedge that stand before a gigantic slab of featureless, grey rock. A stream of silhouettes walks down the path and straight into the slab, leaving a slimy residue in their wake. You also see a scrawny skeleton, a public listings board and the grey pond.
Obvious exits: north, south, west.

A public listings board reads:
Doorb S'Togik tae lliwi. Lioc rettib eht morf Epacse on. Nwad on. Thgilnus on.
(no sunlighT .no dawN .no escapE from the bitter coiL .iwill eat kigoT'S brooD)

5-6-2-21-9-21-16-21-9-6-17-19-10-6-20-21-20-2-14-5-14-2-26-21-9-6-10-19-21-6-17-13-6-20-7-2-13-13-16-15-21-9-6-10-19-9-6-2-5-20-26-16-22-13-16-20-21-26-16-22-19-24-2-26-24-9-6-15-26-16-22-7-16-10-8-16-21-21-9-6-20-16-22-15-5-16-7-21-9-6-21-9-22-15-5-6-19-2-15-5-26-16-22-24-10-13-13-17-2-26-7-16-19-26-16-22-19-2-19-19-16-8-2-15-4-6
(Translation: "Death to the priests and may their temples fall on their heads you lost our way when you forgot the sound of the thunder and you will pay for your arrogance")

Another sign:
Insufferably-Arrrogant Militia-Threaten Households Everywhere-Matters Are Soon Testing Every Reminder-Of Faith-Toward His Everlasting-Fury Insensible Fury Terrible Hatred-Mother Of Our Nihilation.
(Capitals spell: I am the master of the fifth moon)


The pond:
[Plane of Shadows, Town Grey Pond]
You stand on the bank of a tiny pond in the middle of the grey. Frigid, black water splashes against the oozing grey silt that covers the shore. Sitting in the middle of the pond is a massive skeleton, looking content and not the least bit aggressive.
Obvious exits: out.

>point skele
You point at a massive dragon skeleton.
You slow your breathing and clear your mind.
The massive skeleton rests quietly, utterly devoid of spiritual essence.
You don't detect anything unusual about the massive skeleton.
Roundtime: 3 sec.

>look skele
Sticking out of the pond, as though it died lying on its back, is the skeleton of a twenty foot long dragon. Its skull faces directly upward, its jaw unhinged in the appearance of an endless scream.

Tarnished silver pendant

Selyf found a pendant on the dragon skeleton in the grey pond. It appears to be fairly plain, appearing as only a tarnished silver pendant, and has no recall or perceive history on it. Upon trying, Ysselt only felt "You get a vague sense upon holding it that the pendant is important for some reason, but the exact knowledge eludes you." Selyf indicated that when he wore the pendant, he thought Elyhaar's Blessing faded from him, and when Ysselt tried it the following messages happened:
You sense a disturbance in the shadows that flit around your vision.
A tarnished silver pendant pulses suddenly, causing a brief burst of shadows around it.
After wearing it, one cannot enter any of the shadowy arches, so the blessing seems to indeed be removed.
The blessing cannot be reapplied while wearing the pendant: "A brief flare of harsh white light flashes from Selyf's neck, and you recoil from him."

While in the shadow world, Selyf experienced the following: "You get a sudden urge to wear the pendant once more" and wore his pendant. Shortly afterwards Selyf was prevented from dying, and was instead transported outside of the arch back to where we entered. Everyone else saw this:
Mists writhe angrily around Selyf, who struggles to breathe and stay upright. Abruptly, a bright white light flares out from his neck, enveloping him. When it dissipates, Selyf is gone.
Selyf saw this: Colorless mist writhes around you, sensing vulnerability due to your prolonged exposure to this otherworldly atmosphere. Pain explodes into your senses, but as you begin to believe all is lost, a bright white light flares across you and you feel yourself carried elsewhere!"
Confirmed several reports of tarnished pendants being found in various locations in the Shadow Realm.

Damage and Death

At random periods, people take random damage to either vitality or spirit.
The monochromatic mists whorl around your form, making you feel sick to the stomach just for a moment. When you recover, you notice a grinning Elven face staring at you from within the mists, devoid of color but charged with malevolent emotion.

Staying too long in the plane may result in death:
Colorless mist writhes around you, sensing vulnerability due to your prolonged exposure to this otherworldly atmosphere. Pain explodes into your senses, followed by numbness, and your consciousness slips into shadow.

Shadow's Fallen

Morlaena's Motives Explained (per updated Official Festival description)