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Campaign Journal
Dramatis Personae

The Orbaal Campaign
or
What Happened in the North

The Story of Gillamon Brownshroud


Gillamon of Clan Melangel was born in the Keep of Thrand, which lies between Geldeheim and Pled in the northern reaches of Orbaal. Clan Melangel, the most powerful and prestigious of all the Jarin Clans, lived in and around the Castle Thrand, which housed the greatest of Ilvirian Shrines, the Cauldron of Ismania. However, in TR 652, Ivinian invasions seized the territories around Thrand, Geldeheim and Pled, reducing the once great Jarin nation to that of a colony of thralls. Gillamon's grandfather and lord of Melangel was killed in the battle defending Thrand. Clan Melangel still holds much prestige among the Jarin clans, but are now little more than farmers in the eyes of the Ivinians.

Gillamon and his twin brother, Haldar were born fourth and fifth of seven to a family trying to maintain its power and dignity in the face of the Ivinian oppression. Life as a jarin was difficult and Gillamon's family was no exception to the poverty that befell the jarin. Having no claim to the families meager birthright, Gillamon and Haldar were sent, through the power of Melangel among jarins, to the esteemed House of Mountain Voices, a monastery of Cuchlaen Wheelwright to study to become priests. Gillamon and Haldar began their trek to priesthood, with Gillamon becoming adept at the archaic scriptures of Ilvir early. Unfortunately, Gillamon also had a high natural attunement to the esoteric mysteries and the Elders decided that Gillamon would become Shek-pvar. Gillamon's hopes of becoming a priest of Ilvir were dashed, and salt entered the wound when Haldar was finally admitted to the Sacred Ranks, while he was still struggling with meditation and elemental attunement and being chastised by his Viran, Dalissem, for being lazy and undisciplined.

Eventually, Gillamon learned his craft of Lyhavi, the way of light and air, and grew potent in his own right, but his initiation to Satia-mavari was hardly what one could call inspirational. Gillamon was constantly reminded of his brother's apparent power and success while Gillamon remained a simple journeyman.

When Gillamon was 20, after spending nearly 13 years at the monastery, his world was turned utterly upside-down. Ivinians attacked the peaceful monastery and it was burned. Gillamon, and a few of the other Shek-pvar fled with aid from their magics, while most of the rest stayed to fight the hopeless fight. Gillamon's last sight of the monastery would leave ashes in his heart for many years to come: the monastery was already a roaring conflagration, but his brother and a few remaining guards were battling almost three times their number on a section of unburnt wall- Haldar's mighty battlesword flashing in the firelight.

Gillamon and the others wandered in the surrounding forests for days, slowly starving to death. Eventually they ran across an Ivinian raiding party and were captured without a fight. Gillamon was sent to Lorkin to serve in the kitchens as a cook's assistant, where he stayed for two years before he was beaten and sold to a slaver named Chola for a failed escape attempt. Chola promptly sold him to the Pamesani Arena where his foreign looks were made use of in the novelty gladiatorial bouts. He and a few others were dressed up as "elves" who attacked others dressed as "dwarves." He was also used in other team events and other unglamorous battles.

Gillamon learned quickly the ways of the arena. To fail to do so meant death. He spent two years in the outer circuit, training and avoiding truly major wounds. Eventually, he earned the status of a trained gladiator as Brownshroud the Northman, leading teams of gladiators in mass combats or mock naval battles. There finally came a time when the slavers decided that Brownshroud had been kept too long, like a wild animal behind bars. Brownshroud had lost all emotion and expression. He had learned to kill without thinking and without judgement, and had become so adept at killing, even with his teeth and bare hands, that he was given status as a free gladiator and he was made trainer of other fresh would-be gladiators.

Brownshroud spent a total of five years on the gladiatorial circuit, either fighting in pitched battles or training others. He was shipped to the bigger arena in Coranan where he was free to roam inside its walls. Soon thereafter, he was granted his total freedom. He still lived in his alcove above the training grounds, for he had no where else to go. He truly had forgotten how to live, after his years of killing and fighting.

On one of his sleepless nights of wandering the dark streets of Coranan, he was approached by a short dark man and his burly bodyguard. Eventually he was to learn they were front men for the Lia-kavar, but at the time it didn't matter, and it still doesn't. They had a proposition: they needed him to kill a man, and they needed it done cheap and quickly. Since he wasn't guilded, the rates were markedly lower. Brownshroud, The Painter, agreed- he didn't have anything else to do, and was told the target's whereabouts. The mission was a success, barely. After throttling the man in his sleep, Brownshroud burnt the place down in a fit of destructiveness. In the conflagration that followed, Brownshroud was cornered by the watch and was deeply wounded. Only luck and his long unused magics saved him and allowed him to escape to the docks on the River Thard. Since then there have been eight other individual targets, and his skills of subterfuge and assassination have improved.

Between jobs, Brownshroud spent his time sitting idly in his alcove painting scenes from his childhood, and watching spiders build there webs in the corners. The most prominent themes in his paintings are their gloominess and the presence of a reflection off of some shiny surface of a sylvan female. This character is a person who Gillamon had seen during a walk in the forest outside the monastery when he was a child, such a long time ago. He remembers very little about the encounter, except for her beauty and her grace and maintains an idle fascination of her.

Eventually Brownshroud was to meet the Dove while sitting in the remains of the Stake during the Coranan Revolution. He had been killing random opposers of the Free City Movement with his hands or war flail Kingbreaker and had been sitting in his booth painting a scene on a table. It was sometime during this time that Brownshroud understood the power he could hold as an assassin. He believed that his was the power of one death. One death, accurately inflicted into a society, could throw an entire government into turmoil and war. It isn't that Brownshroud was political, it was simply that he enjoys the chaos and confusion assassinations caused.

His brother remains the portrait of success in Gillamon's mind; a jarin rebellion leader, a priest of Ilvir, a loyal protector of the monastery when Gillamon fled. Mentally, Brownshroud is still competing with his brother to feel adequate enough to visit him again, and is still puzzled over which path to take in his life. He knows both the way of the sword and the way of magic, but he knows he cannot become master at both, and he must eventually choose between the two. He is tired of physical violence, having spent five years on the circuit, going nowhere and getting older and softer, and prefers trickery and ingenuity to pure brawn and strength of sword blow. He is fascinated by the potentials of magic, but he knows that killing had become his business, and for all he knew, business was good. He knows the choice must be made, and is torn between the two, but would rather put off the decision for as long as possible.

Brownshroud is a very troubled person, and has realized his difficulty relating with people on any kind of terms. Until he met the Dove, his only contact with people had been with Lia-kavar employers, targets, other gladiators over crossed swords, and monastic monks. Needless to say, he knows he lacks adequate social skills and would prefer not dealing with crowds of people, lest he loose his temper. The Dove once wondered aloud what he would be like when angered, and the answer remained a mystery, for Brownshroud's emotions lay cloaked deep in his mind obscured by his own indecision and troubled beliefs.

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ALONE

(Suicidal Tendencies Lights, Camera, Revolution)


I scream at the sky, it's easier than crying
I'm shyest when I'm shouting out loud
I feel so alone in a room full of people
I'm loudest when I'm in a crowd
I'm alone and nobody hears me
Can't nobody hear me, won't somebody help me
I'm alone and I just need

Someone to take my hand and pick me up when I'm feeling down
Someone to take my heart and give it a home
Someone to be with me and help me through the times when I'm down and lonely.
Someone to be with me when I'm alone
I'm alone, all alone

Alone is the way I live, it's not the way I want it but you know
You can't give in, alone is the way I feel,
It's so hard to understand
Why I've got to be alone

If you look in my heart you'd see it
I'm trying to be something better
If you look in my heart you'd feel it
I've got to keep moving on
If you look in my heart you'd know it
I'm just trying to make my world better
If you look in my heart you'd see it
I got to do it alone

I've been down, I've been down
I've been down, down, down so low
I've been lost, so lost with no place to go
I've had emotions, emotions that you better hope you never know
Sometimes it feels like I just can't take it anymore

Seems like things are getting further out of hand
Why can't for once things go as I plan?
How dare you, how dare you tell me that you understand?
Let me tell you straight out, there ain't nobody here that can
I'm all alone, I'm so alone, to be alone, just leave me alone

If you look in my heart you'd see it
If you look in my heart you'd feel it
If you look in my heart you'd know it
I'm not trying to make no one bitter
I'm just alone, leave me alone, alone, alone, now leave me

I've lived in places that you wouldn't ever want to be
Places where for a minute you couldn't ever stand to be
I've seen things, I've seen things you'd never want to see
So what gives, what gives you the right to be the judge of me
I'm all alone, I'm so alone, to be alone, just leave me alone

A room full of people, can't nobody hear me, can't nobody help me, I'm alone
I just need someone to take my hand and pick me up when I'm feeling down,when I'm down
Someone to take my heart and give it a home, when I'm down
Someone to be with me and help me through the times
I'm down and lonely, when I'm down
Someone to be with, when I'm alone
I'm alone, all alone

Alone is the way I live, It's not the way I want it,
ut I know I can't give in
Alone is the way I feel,
There ain't nothing quite as sad as a person that's alone...


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Eventually, Brownshroud became powerful enough to think about leaving the way of Light and Air and travelling the path of grey magics. He and the Dove had spent quite some time in the Dove's little alchemical chambers in his secret hideout, delving into magics dark and powerful. The Dove studying powers necromantic, and Brownshroud, warping his talent of Air and Light to be used as darkness, death and chill.

It was during the battles of Coranan that the Dove, Brownshroud and a few others made their way north to the Hefosia Highlands, some to participate in the Kingmaking. More importantly, the Dove and Brownshroud had heard that Khare Pesed, a grey mage of some repute, would be there. The information proved to be correct and Brownshroud and the Dove approached the necromancer. The meeting went for the worse, as the ill tempered Khare informed the Shek-pvar that he was renegade, and the two must immediately attack, withdraw to the nearest lodge (several days to the south in Coranan) to notify the elders of his position, or immediately be declared renegade themselves. The thought occured to the two to kill Khare, but his reputation preceeded him as a worthy opponent.

The duo were forced into going renegade, by merely speaking to Khare. Khare, and now the Dove and Brownshroud, was the target of a witchhunt by the Shek-pvar for flagrant use of the Way. Khare, his two new apprentices, and several other renegades formed the Coven of the Kom in the cave of Dragon Magics on the Island of Kingmaking even as the battle for the title raged about them outside.

It was decided that the Coven would seek the depths of Khiraz to offer them relative safety while they prepared to live out a life of fugitives from the long arm of Meldryn. Here, during their year long stay, Brownshroud excelled in magic beyond his wildest expectations, finally attaining the abilities of a grey mage through Khare's instruction.

The Coven was later split up due to the awakening of the dragon in the depths of Khiraz, causing the group to flee by any means necessary. The majority of the group remained in Khiraz, but some managed to fling themselves, by magic or otherwise, accross Harn. Brownshroud did his best to reunite the sundered Coven, to no avail. Thus, Brownshroud became the only grey mage of the group and was shoved down the path of magic, further and further away from the realm of arms.