Attributes: Invested 2/3 in Health & 1/3 in Magika
Perks: Two-handed, Blocking, Light Armor & Restoration
The theme of this play session seemed to be discovery and curiosity. As the player, I was discovering who Raydien is and as a character I think he was doing the same thing by searching for his father. I chose to make the pursuit of his an immediate thing rather than saving it for later. Quite often the idea of finding a long lost relative is used as a momentous long play goal. Many role players doing including myself, however I decided to hand it differently with this character.
I didn't do it because I wanted to be different but because it helped to emphasize that Raydien's dispassionate view of the entire issue. He has no connection with his father, having never known the man. He has no legend built up in his head about how his father is. He has heard no stories of his father incredible exploits. Raydien is looking for his father out of pure curiosity. He has come to Skyrim for another reason, see his father is simply convenient. Finding his father early in the story helps to place emphasis on the fact that to Raydien, finding his father is "no big deal"...at least that's what he thinks now.
There were no updates to his foundation story during this session.
PLAY RULES - UPDATES
Play rules are generally a work in progress until around level 10 this is what I have established so far:
- Daily prayer to Tu'whacca - Prayer takes place either during the twilight hours of morning or evening. The time of day is symbolic of the transition from light or dark, life and death.
- Undead as victims - Undead are viewed as venerated ancestors who have been victimized and turned into something ugly. The raised dead are not despised but pitied and their destruction is considered an act of mercy.
- Make room for the living - The philosophy behind the destruction of undead is not only based upon the Redguard's culture of ancestor worship but also the idea that the realm of Mundas is for living souls and to allow a dead soul to wander Mundas is to deny a living one.
- Ten Dragons - Ten Dragon's Tea and the Dragon's Tongue blossoms it is made from are important to Raydien and symbolic of the flame of passion in his heart and memories of his mother. Collecting the blossoms and making the tea is a ritual he may perform in times of memory.
- Ritual Memory - Ritual memory is a time of extended meditation in which ancestors are remembered and their deeds of both good and ill are recalled. The ritual honors those who are gone and also keeps alive the memory of their mistakes and faults as well as their successes and legends.
- Places of Power and Service - Raydien will always visit houses of the dead and graveyards out of respect. While there he will often look for signs of the raised dead. In addition, he fill offer his services with preparation of the dead for burial. His background as a member of the Ash'abah tribes has given him extensive background in the procedures and rituals of burial as well as a healthy curiosity about the burial customs of others.
- Arkay - Raydien has been taught, by his mother, the religious equivalencies of Tamriel's Imperial pantheons to the Yokudan gods. As such he will often pray at shrines to Arkay while invoking the name of Tu'whacca.
- Dark Intent - The feeling that comes over him when un-death is near. Raydien's ability to sense Dark Intent is based on a die roll. If he is in an area that is known to me (as a player) to have something of interest I make a die roll to determine if the sense is powerful enough for him to investigate. The first time he is in the area the chance is 10%. The chance to sense Dark Intent increased by 10% each time he returns to the area.
- The Departed Toll - Those who are released by Raydien pay a departed toll which will call them back to fight with him in times of trouble. They are eventually released from the obligation and set free to travel to the Far Shores. This is an ability that none of his people have and seems to be completely unique to him. His mother was in awe of it but many other Ash'abah were frightened by his ability to do this and his apparent acceptance of it as "normal". An interesting point about this power is that when the spirits time is up the body is deposited on the ground at the players feet. When this happens the body contains all their gear and gold giving the player the opportunity to loot the body a second time. I am doing this and calling it part of the toll.
- Loot & The Dead - My play rule on loot is a mixture of what is in character and what is necessary to advance the game. Raydien's approach to loot reflects his nature as a warrior and an Ash'abah. He will take look from barrows but will limit it to gold and potions on bodies or in earns. He will not take rings, necklaces or items that would have had deep personal value to the person in life. Anything in a chest he will take. Gold, potions and other such items are considered generic or common.
* Updates to play rules are listed above in italics
Raydien spent two days in Whiterun building gear, trading and learning about the area. He interviewed Arandur a priest of Arkay and discovered that his father, Rundil, was a friend of Arandur and was also a priest of Arkay in Falkreath. Raydien resolved to visit Falkreath to see his father with his own eyes and return the staff.
Raydien took advantage of his time in Whiterun and created a set of traditional Ash'abah armor and a backpack and set out for Falkreath. His travels took him first to Riverwood where he elected to help the local shop owners recover stolen property. The put him in direct conflict with a group of bandits. He was able to overcome the bandits and once again found himself in the depths of a barrow. He used knowledge gained from his previous experience to defeat the Draugr and recover the stole claw. It was noted in this experience that his Departed Toll abilities does not include Draugr.
After returning the claw he encountered an Orc named Durak who spoke to him at length about the vampire menace across Skyrim and told him of the Dawnguard. Not only did they sound to Raydien like an organization that shared his goals but it also sounded as if they were let by a fellow Reguard...could this Isran be Ash'abah?
Along the road to Falkreath the poison of the undead was strong. Raydien encountered a group of bandits led by a vampire and later, a necromancer performing a dark ritual in a lakeside ruin. Further down the road he was attacked by two skeletons and was able to find the wilderness burial cairn they appeared to come from. Raydien paused to meditate at the Cairne top try and sense the presence of additional undead. Just beyond the cairn at the junction of the road to Falkreath and the Lake Illinalta road was a broken down. At this junction, Raydien felt the sense of dark intent but could not place the location and moved on to Falkreath.
Raydien arrived in Falkreath at sunset and immediately found his father performing a funeral ceremony for a dead child. He observed the ceremony but did not interrupt. Later he approached his father an made conversation. He did not reveal his identity as his son and eventually Runil broke off the conversation and went to the local tavern. While Runil was at the tavern Raydien entered the house of the dead and left the staff on Runil's bed.
He then visited the Jarl of Falkreath in answer to a letter he received while in Riverwood. The Jarl offered him land and title if he would kill a group of bandits and Raydien refused the job. He does not view himself as a warrior for hire and found the suggestion repulsive.
Raydien and Runil spoke again inside the tavern where Raydien agreed to help him find his lost journal. Raydien still did not intend to reveal his identity to Runil but felt a strong desire to do something for him. The following day he set out for Bloated Man's Grotto but his travels took him, once again to the junction where he had felt the Dark Intent the day before. This time he was able to sense the intent radiated from the broken tower. He entered the tower sword in hand and was ambushed by a necromancer and his undead minion. He was able to defeat them both and recovered a third relic weapon.
He traveled on to Bloated Man's Grotto to recover the journal. It was his understanding that there was something sacred about the location and that is what had originally drawn Rundil to the grotto.
After a harrowing and exhausting fight with the creatures and Spriggans in the grotto, Raydien stayed the night taking time to rest and properly skin all the animals. In addition, he found the Writ and Blade of Bolar. Understanding importance of the blade he was conflicted about taking it. In the end he decided to take the weapon and place it into the hands of those who were devotees of Talos. He is still investigating where that might be but along the way he stumbled across a shrine of Talos and many dead bodies. He believes handing over the weapon is the right thing to do even if he does not understand much about the conflict.
While camping in the grotto Raydien read Runil's Journal. It told the story of a man haunted by his violent past but trying to be a better man. After reading the journal Raydien resolved that he would not tell Rundil who he really was as that would likely add additional anguish to his life. Upon returning the journal, Rundil opened up further to him and he learned a bit more about his past with the Thalmor. Raydien has much to think about with this father's story and is a bit conflicted regarding his past but has some pride in his fathers ability to change his life. He has resolved to watch Rundil from afar for now.
The following day Raydien finds a post on the notice board about undead infesting a location called Dim Hollow Crypt and makes a plan to investigate that location. He is still thinking about the Dawnguard as well and is trying to resist the temptation to go there until he knows more about them and their leader Isran. He makes plans to travel to Dim Hollow Crypt and to also visit the Hall of the Vigilants while in the area to return an amulet of Stendarr he found in on a bandit.
He spends the day traveling back to Whiterun. Along the way he encounters many bandits and a horrifying scene in Helgen. He continues on to Whiterun arriving at sunset. He does a bit of trading and then goes to the house of the dead where he gives regards to Arandur from Rundil and leaves an offering of another 26 skulls for Arkay...criminals and vampires all.