[pnpgm] Adventures of Z'LEYRA Part 1

Alex Koponen akoponen at mosquitonet.com
Wed Dec 22 20:18:15 CET 2004

The Adventures of Z'LEYRA as told by her to Kaylle the Legendmaster 
Part 1

More than a quarter century ago a promising young Ticasi scholar of a 
well to do family (his father had just been elected to the Council of 
Scholars) came upon and verified the interesting fact that weapons made 
by the Kameri tribe were known to be stronger, less likely to break than 
other weapons made by human hands. Somehow the steel was made tougher. 
This scholar, a charming and adventurous man and knowledgeable in metal 
crafts scandalized his family by traipsing off into the wilderness 
seeking the Kameri in hopes of learning the secret.

With pluck and luck the scholar, Tiren by name, made it though a 
thousand miles of wilderness terrain inhabited by hostile tribes to the 
Kameran, the lands of the Kameri. Quite the adventure, unfortunately his 
notes about the trip were later destroyed in a fire. For his winning a 
word challenge the Kameri gave him one month's visitation privileges, 
only to be extended by word of a shaman. In that month Tiren managed to 
impress and marry a young Kameri shaman, Z'nayha. By all accounts they 
truly loved each other and were happily married. Z'nayha extended his 
visit month by month until she died.

Less than a year after his arrival in the Kameran, Tiren was the father 
of identical twin girls Z'layha and Z'leyra. Born under an auspicious 
moon both girls were obviously talented and very strong willed. 
Fortunately they were also amazingly sensitive to people's moods and 
were easy to raise. In the following years Tiren and Z'nayha had two 
sons and another daughter.

Tiren did learn the Kameri metalworking secret, though to do so he had 
to swear great oaths of secrecy. After eight years in the Kameran Tiren 
managed to send a message to Ticasi saying that he was well, had married 
and had children. Almost another ten years would pass before an event 
would uproot his life and send him back to Ticasi. Their daughters had 
been inducted into the mystic lodges, Z'layha and Z'leyra had been 
taught the greater secrets and just initiated as young shaman when Z'nayha, 
wandering in the woods as she was wont to do, didn't come back. 
Searchers eventually found her corpse. She had been ambushed and killed 
by a raiding party. Her death ended Tiren's visitation privilege.

At Tiren's request the tribe considered his desire to take his children 
with him and ultimately allowed him to take one of his children, Z'layha 
or Z'leyra having finished their studies and of an age to make their own 
decisions. Tiren thought that Z'layha's pet wolf would be harder to fit 
in Ticasi society than Z'leyra's pet eagle. The tribe determined that 
Z'leyra was a redundant shaman and allowed her to be sent with her 
father back to 'civilized' lands after he had told the elders and chiefs 
the advantages to having someone learn civilized skills and magic. She 
was 17 years of age when she left.

After another harrowing thousand mile trip (this time including a trip 
down much of the River Dirla), Tiren and his daughter Z'leyra arrived at 
his families home in Ticasi and found that the family fortunes had 
changed considerably for the worse. His father had only been elected the 
one time to the Council of Scholars, losing out to competitors the next 
two terms. Once because someone stole his masterwork, the second time 
because his shop mysteriously caught fire and burned down with the 
masterwork inside days before the judging. He died, mugged the night 
before a hearing in front of the council in which he had alleged 
cheating on the part of his competitors. The muggers escaped capture 
because they sailed away that night.

Though her grandfather only served one two-year term, that qualified Z'leyra 
to subsidized instruction in the field of her choice. She chose to study 
Balance Magics as a complement to her Shaman skills.

A shy student, treated as an outsider because of her barbarian heritage 
and upbringing, she naturally gravitated towards other outsiders who 
also enjoyed the woodlands and became friends with some Sidh who 
introduced her to Sidh and Elder magic. During this time Z'leyra became 
friends with Varange, a Faerry Sidh Magician who spent time in Ticasi as 
a diplomat and scholar. Z'leyra had managed to do well enough in her 
healing studies, primarily because of her earlier shamanic training, 
that she was recognized as a Master Healer.

>From her father as part of her training she learned how to be a Master 
Armorer and Kameri Weaponsmith. The training she received from the Sidh 
also instructed her in the skill of Jeweler in which she became quite 
competent if not quite a Master.

Tiren, having reestablished himself in Ticasi society, attempted to 
attain the rank of Counsel of Metal Crafts. His blades were wondrously 
strong but he was up against a clan of metal workers that had controlled 
the post, with the one two-year exception, for generations. In one test 
the judging was obviously biased, two years later in the next test in 
which he had arranged for powerful neutral observers to watch, his 
examples were stolen and replaced with shoddy substitutes. While making 
items for the third test the forge in his house mysteriously caught fire 
and burned the house to the ground, killing Tiren and destroying all his 

This left Z'leyra homeless. After seven years in Ticasi she was ready 
for a change. Her father was dead and her grandfather had died before 
she arrived. She did not get along particularly well with the rest of 
her father's relatives. Her closest friends were in the forest, not the 
city. After conferring with some of these friends she realized that only 
by leaving and coming back far more powerful would she have a chance of 
avenging her father.

Thus her long term plans: becoming powerful enough to find and expose 
her father's killers, then ultimately going back to Kameran with enough 
knowledge and power so as to be respected, rather than ostracized for 
leaving the Kameran. She knows that the longer she takes the more 
impressive she must be as she will be compared with her sister who will 
have been advancing in skill as a shaman for years.

Z'leyra was ready for adventure when it offered.

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