My journey begins.
As a recent graduate to the rank of initiate, my first task was to accompany the fishermen on the yearly fruit harvest. This task, while common, is not to be undertaken lightly as many people in Fallcrest depend on the fruit that is harvested. I am eager to prove to my Master that her trust in me is not misplaced, and to begin my service to the town that has provided and cared for me.
An odd thing has occurred. Four young towns folks have decided to assist with this year’s harvest as a means of gaining combat experience. While those who choose to serve the Monestary or the town guard receive combat training, the majority of folks fight only to protect themselves or family; it is almost unheard-of for anyone else to seek danger willingly. Further, I do not believe this to be youthful bravado. I sense in these people a strength of character and purpose the likes of which I have not seen before. For so many to be gathered in one place means that Destiny had begun to unfold a plan that we do not yet comprehend. I feel my place is with them: to observe, to learn, to teach, and to protect.
The situation with the Bullywugs is a troubling one. Sharing the bounty of the harvest is the natural order of things; all living creatures have a right to exist and the Bullywugs are no exception. Our lack of uderstanding is preventing us from seeing an alternative to violence. The moral dilemma is caused by the Bullywug’s deliberate destruction of the fruit-bearing trees as this will undoubtedly lead to the deaths of many creatures due to starvation. I will strive to find a solution, but I fear there may be more blood. I must also be mindful of my companions, I am not sure if they share my distaste for unnecessary violence.
My training has served me well thus far, affording me greater mobility and striking range than normal. My companions seem to mostly prefer ranged combat, something I am not familiar with. If I am to continue to protect them I must shift the focus of my training to defense and durability, lest I become a burden.
After a night of rest we continued the harvest. After our encounter the previous day we were vigilant, and it paid off. Unfortunately what we noticed ended up being a trap. They suprised us by capsizing our boat and attacking. After a brief but savage battle Namib was seriously injured and Petronella was captured! After some tracking we located the Bullywug’s lair and gained entry through force of arms.
Once inside we encountered some light resistance and we eventually made our way to the king’s chamber. We had an opportunity to slaughter both the women and the children of this particular tribe. As I feared, some of my companions were quite willing, eager even, to engage in this horrible act. Fortunately sense and goodness prevailed and we left the defenceless unmolested.
Once in the king’s chamber we saw why the Bullywugs had captured our companion; they were using her in a foul ritual! In addition to the warriors of the king’s court we saw a cacoon in the corner but we did not see the king. I feared the cacoon was holding something terrible and I hoped to end the threat early. My skills failed me, however and I was unable to reach the far end of the chamber. My initial strategy having failed, I looked to see how I could make the best of my new position. With a number of enemies in front of me and my less hardy companions behind, I adopted a stance that would allow me to strike at any enemy that ventured too close. What followed was a classic example of why knowledge is power, or rather, how a lack of knowledge can be fatal.
My tactic worked exactly as I intended, the bullywugs maintained their distance and did not engage my companions. Four of the lessor warriors unleashed terrible croaks that threatened to engulf and overcome my defenses. Reeling from the assault, one of the larger more cabable warriors finished what the lessor bullywugs had started, and the world went black.
Sometime later I awoke to Voltoor standing over me tending my wounds. I wiped the blood from my eyes to see a large lizard-like creature battling my companions, even Petronella! I engaged the creature with all the skill I could muster and we eventually won the day.
Words cannot describe how I am feeling. Lost to my order decades ago during the Dawn War, the Tablets of Enlightenment were stashed in a dark corner of the bullywug’s lair! These are the most precious objects of our order, and outline the code of behavior every monk must follow. Following this code is critical to achieving enlightenment and their recovery is the best of omens.
The question remains how the tablets came to be in the possession of the bullywugs. I wonder if they even knew the significance of what they had.