Carian filigreed crest

Elden Ring

2019.05.27 07:50 jack0641 Elden Ring

This is the subreddit for the Elden Ring gaming community. Elden Ring is an action RPG which takes place in the Lands Between, sometime after the Shattering of the titular Elden Ring. Players must explore and fight their way through the vast open-world to unite all the shards, restore the Elden Ring, and become Elden Lord. Elden Ring was directed by Hidetaka Miyazaki and made in collaboration with George R. R. Martin. It was developed by FromSoft and published by Bandai Namco.

2023.03.20 21:32 ChaoticFairness I believe I have a rather strong Level 25 build to show off. Can it be better, though?

I believe I have a rather strong Level 25 build to show off. Can it be better, though?

Alternative weapons/talismans/items per situation (Read below):
  • Flame Art Sacrificial Axe with Flaming Strike (damage is nuts, and gain more FP from mobs, originally had this Ash of War on my Nagitana)
  • Lightning Morning Star with lightning Slash (mostly for Loretta and enemies in caves/mines)
  • Sacred Halberd with Sacred Blade (rarely used, but helpful against Deathbirds and Skeletons)
  • Beast Crest Heater Shield (with Barricade Shield, in case I need to rely on pokes from my Nagitana while Bloodflamed or if parrying is just a bad idea)

  • Pulley Crossbow (alternative to Black Bow, though I hardly use it beyond finishing off Invaders/Hosts who roll a lot)

  • Wraith Calling Bell (combined with Carian Retaliation from my Eclipse Shield, it does very good damage, and is my one true source of Magic Damage, useful in many situations)
  • Boiled Crab (bosses hit hard, duh)

  • Green Turtle (bosses be fast, duh)
  • Blessed Dew (extra healing while exploring or AFK on host)
My Flask of Wonderous Physick:
  • Opaline Hardtear (cancels out penalty of Radagon's Soreseal, used in boss encounters or Invasions)
  • Greenburst Crystal Tear (can never have enough stamina regen, right?)

I made an older post a week ago about the same subject, but this is what I consider finished.
submitted by ChaoticFairness to EldenRingBuilds [link] [comments]

2023.03.19 23:53 The_Fire_Heart_ Is my quality build good?

(The Bowblade)
Armor=Omensmirk Mask, Omen Armor, Fire Prelate Gauntlets, Omen Leggings
Weapons=Carian Retaliation Buckler, Bloodhounds Fang and Flame Art Flame of the Redmanes Misericorde and Black Bow
Talismans=Crimson Amber Medallion, Shard of Alexander, Arrow's Sting Talisman, Erdtree's Favor
[Stealth Archer, Alternate Setup #1] Armor=Commoner's Headband (Altered), Black Knife Armor, Traveler's Gloves, Traveler's Slops
Weapons=Carian Retaliation Buckler, Lightning Thunderbolt Noble's Slender Sword and Lightning Royal Knight's Resolve Misericorde and Lion Greatbow
Talismans=Arrow's Reach Talisman or Carian Filigreed Crest, Concealing Veil, Arrows Sting Talisman, Great-Jars Arsenal
submitted by The_Fire_Heart_ to EldenRingPVP [link] [comments]

2023.03.18 20:55 mephisto9466 Best Shield Defensive stats

Hello everyone. Below I've posted my findings for the different shields in the game. I'm listing the best shields in the different defensive categories such as guard boost, magic negation, fire negation, holy negation, and lightning negation. I'm not listing physical because there are way too many shields that block 100% physical. I'll Also break them up into Small, Medium, and Large shields. Keep in mind all shields have the barricade ash of war and are maxed out at +25. Also keep in mind that for guard boost you get the highest out of standard affinity for all the shields. Heavy, keen, and quality reduce your guard boost.

Small Shields:
Side note, none of the small shields have 100% physical damage negation, the best one for that is the Iron round shield at 80%
Best guard boost:
The highest guard boost for the small shields is 54 and that is shared with the below small shields.
Smoldering shield, Ice Crest Shield, iron round shield, and guilded iron round shield
Best magic resist:
The undisputed champion for best magic resistance for small shields is the Ice crest shield with magic affinity at 71.2 magic damage negation
Best fire resist:
Side note: Fire and Flame art affinity makes no difference with damage negation
Man-Serpent's Shield with the fire affinity takes the crown at 60.0 fire damage negation
Best Lightning Resist:
Spiralhorn Shield takes it at 48.7 lightning resistance with the Lightning Affinity
Best Holy Resist:
Gilded Iron shield is the king of holy resist for small shields at 63.7 Holy damage Negation with the Sacred Affinity

Medium Shields:
Guard Boost:
The best medium shield for guard boost is the Brass Shield at 69 guard boost, followed up by the Banished knights shield at 68. I'm only mentioning this because the guard boost is very close.
Magic Resist:
Undisputed champ of magic resist is the Silver Mirror Shield that you can obtain in the consecrated snowfield (if the name is wrong its the part of the snow area where you can get to the haligtree) at an absolutely impressive 89.0 Magic damage negation
Side note 1: Carian Knight Shield (the one you get from king of parries moongrum) is the 2nd best for magic resist at 88.7 damage negation with the Magic Affinity.
Side note 2: If you want a shield thats got close to the same magic damage negation as the Carian Knight Shield. Get the Albinauric Shield with the magic affinity. Its got 82.5 magic damage negation and no int requirement (the other shield does) and its got a higher guard boost, might be a better option.
Fire Resist:
The Brass shield makes another appearance at an impressive 73.7 fire damage negation with the Fire Affinity.
Lightning Resist:
None of us should be surprised considering where you get this one from. The Beastman's Jar-Shield takes the cake at 75.0 lightning resistance with the Lightning Affinity.
Side note: If you want a shield that unironically has really good lightning negation after you get the wetstone that give you lightning affinity, the Marred Wooden shield has 62.5 lightning negation. You can get the Marred wooden shield along the same path you take thats the "Safe" path into stormveil. Its on the dead body right after the first grace you see thats past the bird.
Holy Resist:
The Sun Realm Shield takes it at 70.0 Holy damage negation with the sacred affinity

Large Shields:
Guard Boost:
We all know its the Fingerprint Stoneshield you get after you beat mohg the omen in the sewers in lendeyll at 86 guard boost.
Side Note 1: A really good one to get really early in the game after you beat margit is the Manor Towershield, its really easy to get right before godricks arena, look on youtube to find where to get it, it can be a bit tricky. It comes in at 75 guard boost maxed at 25.
Side Note 2: Another nice one you can get that has 82 guard boost (but requires 44 strength) is the Visage Shield that you can snag in caleid.
Magic Resist:
The undisputed king for magic damage negation is once again the Fingerprint Stone Shield at a solid 96.2 magic damage negation with the Magic Affinity
Side note: Two really good option are the Eclipse Crest Greatshield with the magic affinity at 90.0 magic damage negation and the Manor Towershield at 82.5 magic negation with the magic affinity.
Fire Resist:
My reaction to this was quite literally "EXCUSE ME WHAT?!" The winner for this category is no joke, the Fingerprint Stoneshield at 100.0 FIRE DAMAGE NEGATION with the fire affinity. It also comes in at a 90.0 damage negation with LIGHTNING with the fire affinity as well (thought i'd just mention that too). I have attached a picture just in case y'all dont believe me. Fingerprint sillyness
Side note 1: Ok no joke, the manor tower shield is coming in AGAIN as a solid pick for fire damage negation as well with a solid 82.5. I keep mentioning this because of how EARLY you can get this shield.
Side note 2: Another extremely good shield that doesnt require 40+ strength for fire damage negation is the Redmane Greatshield at 87.5 fire damage negation with the fire affinity.
Lightning Resist:
Dear god why is it the fingerprint shield again... Yes the fingerprint shield won yet again at 98.7 Lightning resistance with the lightning affinity.
Side note: I just feel obligated to tell y'all about a few good ones earlier than fingerprint. Golden greatshield at 71.2 lightning resist with lightning affinity, Manor tower shield at 63.7 lightning resist with lightning affiniy, the Dragon Tower shield is another good option at 68.7 lightning damage negation with lightning affinity, and an even EARLIER shield that you can get before manor tower shield is the Gilded greatshield with a lightning damage negation of 67.5 with the lightning affinity.
Holy resist:
Don't worry, its not the fingerprint shield this time. The Haligtree crest greatshield takes this at a solid 98.7 holy damage negation with the Sacred Affinity.
Side note 1: can get the fingerprint stoneshield earlier than the haligtree crest greatshield and yes it is at a 93.7 holy damage negation with sacred affinity.
Side note 2: Another solid option is the Golden Greatshield at 85.0 holy damage negation with the sacred affinity and the crossed tree towershield that you can buy from a merchant that is near goldmask is at 82.5 holy damage negation with the sacred affinity.

Alright I'm done. These are the findings i've made with the shields. Hope this serves you all well. Good luck!

Edit1: Formatting
submitted by mephisto9466 to Eldenring [link] [comments]

2023.03.18 08:49 Hot-Loan-4485 Is filigreed crest still attainable if only first talking to Blaidd at Radahn festival?

I talked to blaidd and defeated radahn right after, not realizing I needed to previously do a part of his questline to get Iji to sell the crest. Is there any way to get him to sell it after this? Thank you
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2023.03.18 02:32 Boochin451 best equipment for mage build?

after beating the game 3 times with my strength build, i decided to start using a mage build. but i don't know what armoutalisman/staff is best. all the information online is conflicting, and nothing seems great. right now, i'm using the carian regal scepter and dark moon greatsword, with rennala's hat and the veteran set for the other armour slots. the talismans i have are the graven-mass talisman, moon of nokstella, erdtree's favor +2, and the carian filgreed crest talisman. is this a good setup? what's better?
submitted by Boochin451 to Eldenring [link] [comments]

2023.03.17 23:59 Death_by_Mini Build Help: Holy Sun Priestess

Hey! Starting a new game trying my first faith build. Only ever played strength or quality in fromsoft games. Second ER playthrough. I love the roleplaying aspect of the games and I'd like to try to make a faith/dex build based around Lightning and Holy (I know it sucks), maybe with a little fire mixed in, to create a holy sun priestess on a pilgrimage to the Erdtree (nerd).
I'm trying to stick to Dark Souls rules (lighting comes from the sun) and all things yellow/red. So lighting, fire, holy. Avoiding death, dark incantations, blood, and frost.
Looking into dex options. Would love weapon suggestions. Will prob power stance or dual-wield. Looking into curved swords, twin blades, and scythes. Will try to avoid strength weapons.
- I'm interested in the eclipse shotel, the halo scythe, winged scythe, and eventually sacred relic sword.
Talismans I'm assuming I need: Shard of Alexander, Radagon's Soreseal, Carian Filigreee Crest, and Lightning Scorpion Charm
What about seals?
It's all so specific I'm just a bit lost in the sauce.
I appreciate any suggestions, from stat levels, to armor, to AoW, to incantations, to Physick mix, etc. I don't need to be OP, just have fun in the campaign and stand my ground in an invasion!
I appreciate any help! Thank you
submitted by Death_by_Mini to EldenRingBuilds [link] [comments]

2023.03.16 23:55 HeraldOfTheFirstBorn Lore: Godwyn is the Anchor Ring! (part 2)

(3.)Rykard, a fundamentalist’s son

(3.1)Graced with golden hair\*
*(this is an answer to a question I raised in an earlier post)
The easiest explanation for Rykard’s golden hair (in paintings) is his relation with his father. Radagon hated his red hair and because of this, his statues depict him with golden hair. Red is associated with older cultures / the crucible / fire and, because of those associations, is looked down upon by fundamentalists. Rykard probably was a fundamentalist given his occupation as a commander of inquisitors (and the time he was born). Maybe, some of the people he captured were send to serve the fire monks in the north (see thorn sorcerers)? Maybe, he gained some connections with the monks so that he later could request their aid - you know to stop the scarlet rot from spreading and ruining the whole kingdom…
(3.2)The gift of fire\*
*(this subsection extends the speculations on Rykard’s actions in Caelid. The original theory used as evidence: the smoldering church, walls of smoldering rock, the abandoned cave, abductor virgin at Redmane, and the painting of Radahn.)
Isn’t it odd that the Redmanes use fire magic, whilst fire in general seems to be hated/feared by the golden order and was outlawed(see, for example, the “Spark aromatic”)? Did they always have this skill or where they taught it? Maybe by the great Adan himself?
We know that the flame monks traveled south in pursuit of Adan (see monk’s flameblade). There are also those monks who abandoned (or fled) their posts due to the seductions of the black flame. Camps of the flame monks are found in liurnia, limgrave(?) and Altus plateau.
It isn’t clear whether the flame chariots are all in service of the monks or are originally build by them; but these chariots can be found fighting alongside both cuckoo soldiers and redmane soldiers. There are also broken chariots in liurnia next to a sword monument commemoration Malenia’s march south. (detail: on the chariot there is a crest of a dragon that looks somewhat similar to the hawk crest). An alliance between the cuckoo’s and redmanes, though not impossible, seems a bit odd.
However, the most interesting location to find those chariot is fort Laidd (next to volcano manor) where they fight alongside monks against leyndell soldiers. It’s unclear whether they are fighting for Rykard or have another reason for being there (the dialogue of the hidden spirit in the castle leaves it ambiguous whether that person was only hiding from Leyndell forces or also from the monks).

(4.)The legendary tale of the knights of the roundtable hold

(4.1)Winged teachers
“Be proud. You were a fine warrior.Your only mistake was your choice of master.Let the winds lift you, to a higher place.”
What is the origin of the connection between hawks, the ancient storm, banished knights and the roundtable hold? I think it starts with the founding of the roundtable hold. I agree with Tarnished Archeologist that the first members of the Roundtable Hold were Godfrey and his knights (The crucible knights and probably the tarnished (Godfrey’s kinfolk)) [Tarnished Archeologist, Godfrey, 3]. We know that Godfrey ‘faced the storm lord’ alone. Outside of Placidusax the most plausible candidate for being this stormlord would be The stormhawk King (whose ashes you give to Nepheli). I once had a hole shtick about the stormlord being Ensha but that was way to farfetched. The stormhawk king appears to be the old lord of Stormveil (see for example Stormhawk Deenh description). Godfrey or someone of the golden lineage clearly built or conquered Stormveil Castle. From Nepheli’s dialogue we learn that Godfrey’s badlands tribe holds a clear reverence for the ancient storm and keeps hawks as pets/companions. In both the roundtable hold and Stormveil castle there are chairs and statues that have depictions of hawks. As Tarnished Archeologist describes in his video how Godfrey took Serosh upon his back to ensure good relations between the old kingdom and the new, something similar may have occurred between Godfrey’s tribe and the stormhawks of stormveil. Outside of Stormveil and Castle Sol, we find Stormhawks (the non-warhawk variants) in Farum Azula. This ancient flying mausoleum is obviously the heart of the storm and therefore an important place for Stormhawks. Stormhawks might even decent from dragons, since some dragons appear to have stormhawk wings on their hide (see for example the dragon in Godrick’s boss room).
At some point the original members of the roundtable hold become tarnished and were ordered to leave the lands between. The crucible knights also seem to have at least lost the respect of the populace and maybe were banished as well (see the crucible gauntlets item description). This leaves the roundtable without members. Yet, there is quite a lot of evidence that the banished knights once roamed the halls of the fortified manor. So it appears that they became the next order of knights that served the two fingers at the roundtable hold.

(4.2)The armor of unaltered champions

Godwyn becomes a hero during the war against the ancient dragons. Since Godfrey (or Maliketh or Marika) are not mentioned it may be that Gransax attacked when Godfrey and the main army were at war in the south. This may coincide with Radagon’s war in Liurnia. Who were the knights that fought alongside Godwyn against the dragons? There certainly were Tree sentinels. Knights that don’t go on campaigns in foreign lands but instead stay behind to protect the erdtree. We know that “After the great ancient dragon Gransax attacked, the sentinels had an epiphany. The only way to truly protect the Erdtree was to become dragons themselves.” This seems to suggest that these sentinels were the first to eat dragon hearts.

Malformed Dragon
Let’s analyze the malformed dragon to learn more about those sentinels. This armor appears to be older than the tree sentinel armor. It bears some resemblance to the crucible knight armour, although even the armour of the crucible knights seems more elegant. The reason why it seems so chaotic could be because of a lack of time due to the war or lack of the required skills to work with dragon scales. Some of the decorations on the armor also suggest that the armor predates the tree sentinel armor. The eye of the fell god appears on the side and on the front there may be a depiction of the crucible. Despite the figurine on top of the armor being the most important part, I postpone its discussion until section 6.3 let me just say now that it depicts the person who lead these sentinels against the ancient dragons.
Okay, so the draconic sentinels seem to be veterans from the old dragon war. Now on to the banished knights. When was their armor made? It seems to be more refined than the malformed dragon armor. Yet some things do lead me to believe that it was made a long time ago.

Banished Knight Armor analysis
Consider that since golden versions of the armor are on display in Leyndell, the armor was once worn by knights who were allowed inside the city. Yet the armor has horns! We know that in the later parts of the erdtree age, horns were scorned! The armor of the two commanders (O’neil and Niall) has even more horns. If these horns are real, they may be there for the same reason as they are on the drake knight armor: “Features the spoils of a dragon catch as an emblem of pride as both dragon hunter and partaker of communion”.
The same smithing technique to roll and cut pieces of the armor that was used for the crucible knight helms seems to have been used for the banished knight helmets. Once again I’m postponing the discission of the figurine on their helmet until section 6.3.
There are intricate details on the armor. I cannot make out what all of them are supposed to represent. In the front there is a triangle/diamond shape. This might represent blessed dew from the erdtree. All banished knights seem to have long, wavy golden hair like their leader, Godwyn. Maybe these knights were born during the early age of plenty? The description of their weapons also states that it is “intricately engraved with an ancient motif”. Again suggesting that is order of knights is very old. The decorations on the armor looks somewhat similar to those on Godfrey’s armor. Some beastmen also wear armor that looks not too dissimilar. Maybe incidentally, the weapons of the beastmen, the shape, material and motif, resemble Godfrey’s axe.
A very interesting detail is that the knights wear spurs. Yet we never encounter these knights riding a horse (or a dragon). This seems to suggest that they were once either part of heavy cavalry units or an order of knights send on quests.
When adding the surcoat found on the unaltered version of the armor, we can find some more hints to the origins of these knights. The colors are mostly deep red with gold and silver motifs. Notice that the main Erdtree forces, Leyndell knights and tree sentinels, do not utilize this color. Many items suggest that red is associated with vitality, prehistory and in later days with sin (in part due to its association with fire). The use of red in the original banished knight armor again, suggests that these knights are from the early part of the Erdtree age. The unaltered armor combines the surcoat with a navy blue cape. Just as Godfrey wears and as is found on the unaltered armor of Bernahl. This color remains associated with royalty even to this day as we can learn from the navy hood item (compare to crimson hood). Notice that Bernahl has removed his cape, symbolizing his abonnement of grace. In Godfrey’s case he wears no red in his first phase when he is still conducting himself as a noble lord, yet when he reverts back to his primordial self the red color appears in this case as blood covering his face and body.
From the facts that the banished knight armor seems old, that the armor appears in the roundtable hold, that the knights utilize storm ‘magic’, and that there are hawk depictions in the roundtable hold we already have a lot of evidence suggesting that they became the new ‘knights of the roundtable hold’. Yet there is more! There are two sets of symbols found on different pieces of their armor. It are those visuals pieces of evidence that seem to prove without a doubt what these knights function was.
(4.3) Words of the prophets
The Uhl script

Uhl script on the Banished Knight Shield?
On the banished knight’s shield there appears the same type of script as is found on the tablets in Marika’s room and on those the prophet figure in the ruins is holding. In a stream from Quelaag she looks at a presentation from one of her viewers, teslobo, who talks about this script [Quelaag, Uhl script, 4]. They seem to suggest that it is not found in other locations that Marika’s room and the ruins, yet this does not appear to be the case. I have also found it on the black knifeprints, the royal knight helm, st trina’s torch, spirit calling bell, drake knight armor and the fingerprint stone shield (on the sides and back). Maybe this is the language of the Numen? I like the idea that this is an old script that appears on rediscovered writings of old prophets and that these prophecies are something the nobility studies. That, as in real life, this language is then used by the noble family to send secret messages to each other (I’m thinking specifically about the st trina’s torch that seems to be a ‘gift’ from Morgott to Miquella and about the black knife prints that may contain a message for Queen Marika).

Uhl script 1

Uhl script 2
The most intriguing location were this script shows up is in on the coffin (and the path it travels) that sends you to the deeproot depths (Godwyn’s resting place). The other coffins you can travel in have no such symbols. Again hinting at some connection between royalty and this language.
The deeper meaning of the occurrences of this language and their use I cannot explain. I’m also not entirely sure that all the examples I have given present the same language or that some are yet another mysterious language.
That this script appears on the banished knights shield gives us once again some proof that these knights were once renowned and held positions of high status. The second script, however, is the one that proofs what their function once was.
Words of light

Words of Light
On the banished knight surcoat there are silver scribbles. Though it may not be entirely clear these are the “language of light” of the two fingers. Here are the other items that mentions or depict this language: two fingers heirloom, cipher pata, coded sword and the scripture wooden shield (this shield is used by skeletons found in some very interesting locations). This script also appears when using two finger incantations. Guess who uses such an incantation? Well, the two banished knights that wear the unaltered armor of course! See for an example this video by NanoSunGaming at 1m17 [NanoSunGaming, Knight, 5].
I think this gives us more than enough evidence that these knights were once the members of the roundtable hold. In previous writings I have already shown that these knights were once loyal to Godwyn. Given the figurine on their helmet (see section 6.3) and their dragon hunting exploits they seem to be a later iteration of the draconic tree sentinels. Instead of simply protecting the erdtree, they protect the kingdom and enforce the will of the two fingers.
Detail: in the image below you see 2 examples of text where I’m unsure whether it is the “uhl script” or the “words of light” or some other language. The top of the image shows the text from golden fundamentalist incantations; the bottom shows the painting of Marika found in the roundtable hold.

what script is this?
(4.4) Knights of the fringes
Like the tarnished before them, the storm knights in the end lost their grace and were banished. Their fate seems to resemble the Knights templar. Previously, I hypothesized that they were punished because of their revolt after Godwyn’s death and attempted siege(s) of the capital. It it is possible that their banishment happened even earlier. We know from ‘The Wings of the Storm’: Oleg and Engvall that Morgott invited them back to the capital. From Engvall’s item description we learn that he gained renown as a ‘hero of the fringes’. Oleg’s ashes are found in the first dungeon: the ‘Fringefolk Hero’s grave’. This dungeon is full of banished knight and exiled soldier spirits; and is decorated with their banners. The fringefolk appear to be the knights and soldiers. One of Marika’s speeches may have been addressed to them on the day of their banishment:
“The Erdtree governs all. The choice is thine. Become one with the Order. Or divest thyself of it. To wallow at the fringes; a powerless upstart.”
These ‘spoken echoes’ Melina shares with you at the Grand lift of Dectus, on the border between the hinterland and the heartland of the Erdtree kingdom.
Whatever was the reason of their banishment, now we find them on the outskirts, some working for Godrick others protecting the ruins of the ancient dragon cult and yet others, even though only their spirit remains, are still serving their old commanders. In castle Sol we encounter a last interesting detail about the wardrobe of the knights. On the unaltered armor there seems to be parts of a wolf’s hide. The two commanders wear capes made of this same material. I have wondered before as to what happened to the shadows of the twin prodigies. Whether they are the original ‘wolves’ or not, they appear to fulfill this function now; Niall carried out an important quest for Miquella at the church of the eclipse, whilst his son(?), O’Neil, accompanied Malenia on her own quest in the south!
(4.5) The second defence of Leyndell
Just a small detail: in my previous posts I said that Radahn attacked during the second defence of Leyndell. I didn’t have a good explanation then and I still have none now. There is no evidence of the remains of redmane soldiers at the inner or outer walls; or at any of the camps in the altus plateau. The only evidence we have is the picture in the intro. If we look at this picture there is nothing really that suggests that we are on the battlefield in front of Leyndell. We don’t see the walls nor Leyndell soldiers. Since we know that Morgott (as Margitt) together with the night’s cavalry (“fell hands of the omen”) hunted all sorts of Champions, it seems more probably that this picture depicts Morgott ambushing Radahn at a Redmane camp (in Limgrave or Caelid). My earlier reason for believing Radahn attacked the capital is that if we believe the visual evidence which only suggests that banished knights attacked the city and textual evidence that states that Godefroy was one of the assailers, we have to conclude that none of the main demigods ever managed to besiege Leyndell, whilst knights first led by Godefroy, an obscure Golden lineage scion, and thereafter either led by Godrick, the old fool, or worse, led by no lord at all managed to do so twice! But feeling that it makes the important demigods look bad is no good reason to ignore the evidence that is there. The sword monument that commemorates the second defense is right next to the battlefield where you find all the banished knight armor. The only confusing part is that in the cinematic trailer we see an army attacking the inner wall, yet that army is made up of Godrick’s knights and soldiers and there appear no banished knights amongst them. We know that godrick’s knights and soldiers fled the capital, just like he himself did. This suggests that they accompanied Godefroy in the first attack and their attack allowed Godrick to escape the city. Yet, confusingly, the sword monument for the first defense is found not at the walls, but much farther to the east, close to the second church of Marika. Could it be possible that these monuments demarcate were the battle ended? That Godefroy was pursuit and captured at this location? It still seems like a spectacular feat that armies without a major leader managed to breach the outer wall twice!
The banished knights seem to specialize in sieges! To the list of places once assailed by banished knights we now have to add Redmane Castle! These knights seem to specialize in sieges (though they do not appear have a good track record with them..)!
(4.6) Alliance to Godrick, last scion of the Golden Lineage
Most of the knights that survived the war in Caelid seem to have gathered around one of the last scions of the golden lineage. Perhaps they believe in Godrick’s promise that they “shall one day return together, to their home, bathed in rays of gold”. Maybe they even believed that if enough Tarnished were sacrificed a certain Golden Prince could be reborn, the ‘magnum opus’ of a skilled grafter (see section 6.1 for some related ramblings)?
But Godrick is a distant relation, part of, I think, a ‘cadet branch’. Notice that the tree-and-beast banner is the only case of ‘impalement’ seen in all the different coats of arms of the different factions. If it follows the expected rules of impaling the ‘dexter’ side (left side, from our perspective) displays the arms of the husband and the ‘sinister’ side those of the wife. The tree-and-beast surcoat tells us that the coat of arms on the dexter half “depicts the distant erdtree”, from this description we can surmise that it was the arms of a noble house that lived in the outskirts of the kingdom. Perhaps with its ancestral domain found in the weeping peninsula? This might explain Godrick’s insistence that the grafted blade greatsword (interesting name) must not fall in the wrong hands. The meaning behind Kenneth Haight’s description of Godrick as a “jumped up country bumpkin” may also become clearer. Though Fort Haight may be smaller than Castle Morne, it is closer to both Stormveil and, more importantly, the Erdtree (and its grace). If we, on the hand, were to assume that Godrick and Godefroy were born and raised in the capital, then we have to think it strange that a man who reveres the Erdtree would use such a phrase for someone born right under this tree!
(5.)The schism between cult and communion
(5.1) Before the cult: stealing the power of the ancients
The first people who wielded lightning and ate dragon hearts, were (probably) the tree sentinels who fought in the ancient dragon war. Though it is not entirely clear whether they themselves ate dragon hearts or if they gave the hearts to their horses.
We know of one ancient hero who ate enough dragon hearts to become a magma wyrm: Theodorix, hero of the War against the Giants. Since, there is a dragon corpse in a cave close to where we encounter Theodorix, it’s possible that he only started to perform dragon communion after the shattering.
Notice, that the draconic Tree sentinels do not use their own body as a vessel for the lighting, instead their weapons, which are made from the claws of an ancient dragon (possible all from Gransax) are used to summon and hold red lightning. This may not use lightning directly because they were unable to do so (at least during the war), the dragon bolt blessing description tells us: “Only those loved by dragons can survive the ordeal of cladding their bodies in lightning.”
(5.2) What good is a storm without lightning?
That storm winds and lightning would be related, is not a foreign concept to us because this is true in our own world. Storm and Lightning seem to also be connected in Elden Ring. Cleary, the ancient storm refers to the never ending storms of farum azula. Stormhawks appear as native creatures in the old mausoleum. The Warhawk ashes tells us that: “The storm is a warhawk’s cradle”. Maybe all flying creatures need some connection with the storm to be able to fly.
Given that there is a connection between lighting and storm, it is peculiar that we find almost no characters utilizing both powers. Commander Nial, Nepheli, Vyke* and Placidussax are the only ones I can think of. What’s more, we find weapons that can conjure a thunderstorm, stormhawk axe, in the fortified manor and castle sol, but, outside of Nepheli, never see anyone using this weapon. The locations where we find this weapon have deep connections with the banished knights. Knights who utilize the storm winds and the fire of dragons but seem to have no command over lightning. Most enemies we find that use lightning are Leyndell knights that appear to have no ability to conjure storm winds.
*If you’re wondering: when you fight Vyke in the evergaol he uses storm assault. The ‘other’ Vyke uses “frenzyflame thrust” which essentially the same movement but without the wind effect.
Have the banished knights lost the ability to conjure lightning? Are they not loved by ancient dragons? Can they not use golden lightning because they have been banished (are without grace)?
(5.3) What good is a dragon without fire?
Both ancient and mortal dragons can spew fire. We know that for a long time during the erdtree age, the use of fire was heavily restricted (see the spark aromatic). Indeed, the Leyndell knights still do not use fire. If dragon communion is not a practice of the ancient dragon cult and instead the dragon cult is more closely connected with late Golden order beliefs (i.e., fundamentalism), would you not expect the ancient dragon priests to abstain from using fire? Lansseax, the only priestess we know of, appears to guard one of the entrances to the altus plateau and in her second location is very close to Leyndell forces, all evidence that she still is loyal to Leyndell, yet she appears to have no qualms with using fire. Yes, I know that there are those loyal to Leyndell that use fire, but most still do not. (the draconic tree sentinels may have found a loophole since it is their horse that spews fire). Another indication that could have shown Lansseax’s continuing alignment with Leyndell would be if she used golden lightning, this is also not the case (of all the ancient dragons, only Fortissax (and maybe Placidusax (see section 7.2)) uses both red and gold lightning).
There are two known churches of dragon communion, one in stormveil the other in Caelid. At Farum Azula, one of the main structures we adventure through is called the “Dragon Temple”. There you can find an enormous dragon skull. This skull does not resemble that of an ancient dragon (who may not even have skulls). It would be interesting to compare the size of this skill with Greyoll’s and Gransax’ head sizes. This temple is patrolled by Banished knights. What’s more, if you visit all the scattered pieces of the temple (you can use the names of the sites of grace as a way to check what parts used to belong to the temple) you’ll see that the prince of death’s root can also be found at this temple. The same stone structure (altar?) that is found in the dragon communion churches is also found in the bestial sanctum and in farum Azula. Similar ancient dragon statues are found in both the communion churches as well as Farum Azula. There are even some beastmen (I’d have to check if they are always skeletons) that can spew fire, implying that they partook in communion.
The drake knight armor is found in an ornate chest in the dragon temple. One other chest of the same design, also found in the temple, holds the old lords talisman. Nothing suggests that dragon hunters are not welcome in Farum Azula.
Side note: I had earlier pointed out that some beastmen in farum azula use the same sun realm shield as the golden skeletons near the battlefield in leyndell use. Some of those skeletons can jump in the air and spew ghostflame. Perhaps this has some connection with dragon communion?
(5.4) What good is a mind without hands?
Why would cultists hunt dragons and eat their hearts? What benefit is there for the ancient dragons?
I think this has all to do with ensuring the dragons survival. Notice that Greyoll being the mother of all mortal dragons may point to all other dragons being infertile. Various items tell us that the mortal dragons are the ancient dragon’s descendants, so no new ancient dragons are born. These same items also tend to describe the mortal dragons as “paltry”. Additionally, it looks like the dragons are getting smaller. Outside of the dragons themselves, we know of several species with similar properties to the ancient dragons: the dragonkin soldiers, the magma wyrms, and the draconian people. The dragonkin soldiers are unfortunately not immortal and the same can be said for the draconians (who, even worse, have unusually short life’s). All three species may be attempts to create new ancient dragons or at the very least suitable inheritors of their culture.
The mortal dragons have lost their immortality, gravel rock scales and original size. Notice that, in contrast with the banished knights, mortal dragons do not appear in Farum Azula itself they only circle around it. Are they not allowed inside? Do they not have sufficient command over the stormwinds to reach the city?
Is there anything else that dragons have lost, something most precious too the ancient dragons? Well yes, of course: Intelligence! Five fingered hands! From the cinquedea we learn that five fingers are symbolic for intelligence. Guess which creature has no such features? Mortal dragons! They are wyverns. Guess who has five fingers and can wield weapons: Magma Wyrms! Hands are required to wield lightning, a skill the modern dragons clearly do not possess (Note: an unusually clever dragon, Azula, is able to wield a magic blade using her mouth. A skill is probably has learned from the carians, given the red wolves that have a similar skill).
Let’s look at an example of the golden order’s propaganda, the magma wyrm’s scalesword’s item description states the following:
Curved greatsword wielded by Magma Wyrms. The shape resembles a dragon's jaw and is covered in hard scales.It's said these land-bound dragons were once humans heroes who partook in dragon communion, a grave transgression for which they were cursed to crawl the earth upon their bellies, shadows of their former selves.”
“Grave transgression”, “cursed to crawl the earth”, blablabla… What these dimwits fail to mention is that the magma wyrms can walk upright for a considerable long time, much longer in fact than even the wise and graceful ancient dragons!
Note, in the description above, the mention of “hard scales”. The scales of magma wyrms appear to be harder than the dragon skin of mortal dragons! Yes, some features are missing. Wyrms cannot fly and we have not encountered any that utilize lightning. You win some, you lose some.What’s interesting to consider is, if dragon communion really was a part of the dragon cult when Godwyn was still alive, the magma wyrms may have been immortal thanks to their origin as blessed-by-grace humans.
Finally, at the church of dragon communion in Limgrave you can find a message that says:
Far to the east, you’ll find the cathedral of Dragon communion. A place where draconic power gathers.”
From the Dragonbarrow map fragment you learn that:
The dragons that escaped the scarlet rot and made nest of the plateau to Caelid’s north. Thus it was named “Dragonbarrow”, and none dare to enter.”
So, before the scarlet rot, both dragons and dragon hunters gathered in Caelid at the Cathedral of Dragon Communion. To me the relation between dragons and hunters may be similar to warriors in gladiatorial combat. Perhaps the dragons even fight amongst themselves, consuming hearts to become stronger.
(5.5) The schismatics and the wounds that never healed
Let’s say you conducted the following experiment:you show both the banished knight armor set (with the altered dragon helm) and the Leyndell Knight armor set to a group of people who have never played Elden Ring. You then ask them to choose which of the two armor sets belongs to a member of a cult that worships dragons. Do you think anyone would pick the leyndell armor?
Strange though it is, the only character we can find that we now for certain was a dragon knight up until the day they died, is Kristoff. Given that he wears the same armor and has the same moveset as generic Leyndell knights, it is not unreasonable to suggest that all leyndell knights are worshippers of the ancient dragons. But if this is so, where is their church? Where are the statues of ancient dragons? Maybe the Stormcaller Church used to be their gathering place. After all, the hill where you find the church is (probably) where Godwyn defeated Fortissax and befriended him. This hill may very well be holy ground for the cultists. That Kristoff, the Ancient Dragon Knight, was buried here is certainly suggestive. (remember in an earlier post where I claimed the statue of Radagon in the church was not there originally?)
Reading the descriptions of dragon incantations you are constantly reminded that the cult is from the capital. Yet when you travel to Farum Azula you discover the Ancient Dragon Prayerbook. A book from the cultists that never reached the lands between. From this book you learn two “secret incantations of the capital’s ancient dragon cult”. Why are they secret? Why were their cultists in Farum Azula that had acquired knowledge not known to the knights in the capital?
To be able to use red lightning you need to be very close to the Ancient Dragons. Either literally by using their body (draconic tree sentinel weapons) or figuratively by having a close relationship. Vyke was the knight Lansseax loved most, he is the only human we encounter that uses red lightning. Cultists allowed to live in Farum Azula must certainly have been very close. Notice that the beastmen chosen to guard Farum Azula also wield red lightning.
Did some of the cultists travel to Farum Azula to escape the clutches of the fundamentalists? Surely, the practice of dragon communion would greatly trouble the fundamentalists and cuckoo knights (possibly sorcerers in general). In part because of a disgust of artificial life forms and also because of the wyrms use of fire based sorceries ( in section 10.7 I discus connections between Magma Wyrms, Mt. Gelmir and serpents).
To met it seems that there was a schism between the cultists, either before Godwyn’s death or as a direct consequence of his demise. The cult split up between those wanting to preserve the old traditions and those that combined ancient dragon worship with golden order fundamentalism. Not only was the cult split into different factions, their ability to use the dragon’s powers was also divided up: red lighting, gold lighting, storm and fire; only Fortissax can still wield them all.
link to the next part:
submitted by HeraldOfTheFirstBorn to Eldenring [link] [comments]

2023.03.16 20:35 MarblecoatedVixen Items that Are Not What They First Appear

Let's assemble 100 items that reward players for making insight, history, or investigation checks on their loot! Rewards might be a realization of value that someone just looking at it might not think of, story hooks, or warnings to handle this carefully, or something else. Looking forward to what we come up with. [Currently at 29/100]

I've deliberately left a couple things with just an [X] variable for a DM to insert their own detail.
At first it seems to be: But then you realize:
1 A stopped brass pocketwatch those scratches are numbers, coordinates actually to [X]
2 A polished black lacquer music box, with a picture of a migratory duck on the lid and an inscription inside that reads, "Home is Wherever I'm With You." The mechanism plays a nasty dissonant tune. There's an enchantment, and once attuned to two people, can be used in two minute ritual to teleport the user to the other person attuned to it.
3 Yellow Resin ring with a bee inside the amber There's an inscription that reads "Mr. Sanders is here for lunch." Saying it out loud will summon one 8 oz jar of honey once a day.
4 Handwritten Draconic Book A Copper Dragon’s personal journal kept carefully during ten years as a midwife. Read it cover to cover to gain a +[X] to medical checks
5 Smooth dark wooden ball with a bullseye on one side, oh wait, it's a wooden eye! Actually a baby mimic, roll dex to dodge finger nibbling. Don't put this in your head!
6 Sealed ceramic jar decorated with flowers and birds, with a fancy abstract design pressed into the base Sealed Elven Burial Urn. The monogram won’t help you narrow it down as much as the decorations: the golden irises are part of the crest for a local family recently forced out of their position of political power after a series of family tragedies. No obvious explanation for the cattails and family of ducks in the image (the urn is for the remains of a mother and child killed during a home invasion. The child loved ducks)
7 Weird Wooden Mace, sounds like something broke off inside Giant's Baby Rattle, see how the grooves are actually bunny ears laying along the bunny's back?
8 Simple copper wire spectacles +1 to hearing. The glasses are enchanted as hearing aids.
9 Wicker basket with cushion and wicker lid Wicker pet carrier haunted by a ghost cat
10 Crystal whistle. Pretty, but makes a terrible off-pitch noise when blown. Has no affect on most creatures, but when blown within hearing range of a mimic, it affects the mimic so strongly that the mimic loses its shape and reveals itself.
11 Leather saddle Looks ordinary enough, but allows continuous Speak with Animals between the rider and his/her mount as long as they are both touching it.
12 A cube of gold, roughly 2"x2", ornately carved. When shaken, something rattles on the inside but there's no discernible way to open it. The cube contains diamonds. It will open and auto-cast revivify if it's owner perishes.
13 A pocket watch with abstract filigree on the lid. Opening it reveals 3 dials none of which seem to tell conventional time They actually track the passage of time on three separate planes. [DM's discretion which planes are most relevant to the story and setting.]
14 A haunted-looking skull covered in ominous runes, with gems in its eye sockets The gems are just glass, and the skull is made of painted wood. It's a stage prop, signed by a famous actor on the night of his final performance. It could be extremely valuable to the right collector. Possible plot twist: it is haunted, but only by the actor's ghost. He wants it returned to his old theatre and used in performances in his memory
15 A large silver coin. One side appears corroded and pockmarked, and the other bears the image of a woman rising from the sea The 'pockmarks' are actually a deliberate pattern- a map of the moon's surface. The woman is an obscure and nearly-forgotten lunar and tidal deity, and the coin is an amulet that has a calming effect on werewolves and grants bonuses to all rolls related to coastal saltwater fishing
16 A book of spells with particularly elaborate verbal components written in an unknown but important-looking script Only one or two minor spells actually work- The rest of the "incantations" and "magic words" are actually disguised and encoded reports from a deep-cover spy
17 An oil lamp, of the sort you might find a genie in No genie, alas, but it's enchanted so that any liquid it's filled with becomes temporarily flammable. You'd be surprised how much money you can save by using water instead of lamp oil
18 An ordinary looking key This key appears differently to every person who looks at it (material and shape), but always appears unremarkable. Can be inserted into the lock of any door to turn it into a portal to [X] plane/dimension
19 A plain ring with a detailed swirly engraving on it The ring heats water that’s poured through it. It was made by an artificer to heat small volumes of water. A simple luxury. Players may discover that when they wear it, it makes their finger feel warm. It’s warming the “water” that flows through their finger
20 A pair of black leather gloves The gloves allow the user to interact with shadows as if they were the object casting them, but only through the gloves. Does not interact with the “shadow beam” (the space between the shadow and the object casting the shadow), only the part of the shadow projected onto a surface. The shadow influences the object as well, for example if you punch the shadow of a sandcastle, the sandcastle itself will collapse
21 An ornate wooden pen with inlaid Dwarven text Created for an ambassador to a Dwarven Kingdom, the pen carries an enchantment that, when attuned, allows one to write in Dwarvish without understanding the language. A high enough history check might yield the trivia that there was a matching pair of glasses that allowed one to read Dwarvish as well.
22 A small rubber duck. Duck of Ducking - a small rubber ducky that warns of incoming ranged attacks. Once per day when a projectile is heading toward you, you hear "Duck!" inside your head. The creature that targeted you automatically misses their attack.
23 Appears to be a bronze sword with an ornate hilt inlaid with a rosebush motif. Mace of Thorns: The "hilt" is actually the business end of the mace. The "blade" has no edge, and the "hilt" has tiny spikes where the thorns on the motif appear. Deals 1 piercing and 1 poison if you grasp it like a sword.
24 A deck of playing cards. The cards are enchanted so that anyone who can see magic can read what the card is from the back as well as the front. They were created by a wizard who paid for his magical experiments by running a rigged casino.
25 A pair of shiny six sided dice Trick dice, cork interior and plated with abalone. By soaking them in water you can pre-set them to land on a certain side. This set was made for a traveling troupe of players whose signature performance hinged the plot on a dice roll.
26 A simple hatchet, well sharpened and cared for. Looks like an axe, feels like an axe. You can even shave your face or legs with it. But try to chop down a tree and it transmutes into a herring.
27 A silver trinket, shaped like a sad looking pug dog. When tossed or thrown, the silver trinket will cast Banish on the target for 1d4 turns. The target only has to come into contact with the dog for the Banish to take effect.
28 A gold/silvecopper coin (as appropriate to player level) with the engraving of a happy dragon’s face. The rest of the coin is covered with delicately engraved scales. After being spent, the coin will eventually find its way back through circulation to the player who spent it, upon which, it will uncoil into a miniature toy dragon who is very happy to see you. It will remain as such for 24 hours, after which it will coil back up into an inanimate coin when the player next goes to sleep.
29 A quarterstaff that when thrown or discarded always returns covered in a bit of slime. It is an Ethereal Mastiffs favorite stick. Anyone that can see ethereal can interact with it to either retrieve the stick, throw it, or pet the mastiff anything else causes it to disappear for 1d4 hours.

submitted by MarblecoatedVixen to d100 [link] [comments]

2023.03.16 14:53 Brendanlendan How could I improve this prologue?

Kyrus felt his heart race as he remembered his brother's last words to him. He longed to escape, to hide from the soldiers marching in cadence and the blood-curdling screams that filled the air on the other side of King’s Mountain, his faction’s ancestral home. The smell of fire and charred flesh was suffocating as it consumed the corridors, but Kyrus ran as fast as he could, searching for help.
He quickened his pace, feeling his nimble legs begin to numb as they carried him. He sprinted down the hallway, through the dark intricately wrought iron and stone corridor. Most of the lanterns on the walls had been extinguished, leaving only a few to light the way. Kyrus relied not on his sight, but on his memory of running up and down these very corridors with his older sister, Kyra.
But before he could reach the end of the corridor, his foot caught on something, causing him to fall hard on his left knee against the cold, wet stoned floor. He rubbed his knee and felt a cold sticky substance on it. He felt around and noticed the cold sticky substance was all over the floor, it was darker than the stone, staining it. As he brought it closer to his face, it smelt of almost metal and he could see it was dark, almost red. He looked over to the source of the substance and saw what he had tripped over.
In the dark, slumped over against the wall was the silhouette of a man. Kyrus’ curiosity got the better of him as he slowly crawled towards the man. While Kyrus had trouble seeing at first, as he moved closer he could make out features. The man was clean shaven and noticeably thin, but it was not until Kyrus saw the bulging mole on the man’s forehead that he recognized who it was, his old teacher Rennis.
Kyrus involuntarily screamed, he had never seen a dead body before. His brother Alamus sometimes would play dead when they rough housed and played in the courtyard. Alamus always made it look like he was just sleeping and could wake up at any moment as Kyrus would run around and jump on him. But Alamus always woke up, lunging at Kyrus to get a scare out of him. Nothing like what Rennis’ corpse currently did. It was contorted on the ground, and Rennis’ once entrancing green eyes stared without seeing, his mouth half open like a caught trout. Kyrus could see under his teacher’s pointed chin a second smile was carved across his throat, leaving the puddle that engulfed the entire floor that Kyrus now sat in.
He did not know what to do. Alamus would know what to do. He always knew what to do. He then remembered what Alamus had told him to do.
He quickly stood back up, but glanced one more time at his dead mentor. Rennis was his first teacher, hand selected from the Sunrock Academy, the source of all Tadem’s knowledge and history, by his mother herself, when Alamus was old enough to talk. Rennis had taught Alamus, and then his sister Kyra, until it was Kyrus’ turn. Rennis even taught his cousins Zona and Eldric. His mother often joked that Rennis had spent so much time teaching the Vallus children that he was practically a member of the illustrious faction himself, much to the annoyance of his uncle, Cydra.
Kyrus had always found Rennis to be harsh, but fair. He held all of the Vallus children to the highest of standards, something they all, but Eldric excelled at. He did not deserve to be butchered like a swine and his body left to rot. Kyrus went and closed his mentor’s eyes, saying a silent prayer to their god Solius, just like his father would have done to one of his own fallen soldiers, that Rennis’ soul will be at peace. When he finished, he ordered his feet to move.
“FATHER!” he screamed down the corridor out to the courtyard. It was too late to save Rennis, but his father could still help him save Alamus. His father could fix anything. There was still hope. There was still a chance. “MOTHER! “KYRA!”
Yet, when he reached the castle courtyard, a place of childhood wonder that had been always filled with an abundance of life and activity, was now nothing more than silence and carnage. The only sound afforded to the atrocity the calm call of an owl somewhere in a tree. The tall white stone was splattered with blood from the various bodies that decorated the landscape. All the delicate flowers of rainbow colors Kyra spent every afternoon naming were crushed by a figure and the rest were mowed down by the iron boots of the soldiers that had been there, the trees bore the scars of being slashed and full of arrows. Through the butchery he could make out more faces he recognized.
He saw the top half of his father’s advisor near the edge, Wallace, his bottom half lost somewhere in the shrubbery. Two of his mother's handmaidens were mutilated so badly that Kyrus did not recognize them, only even to identify them as his mother’s by the rags of their dresses that had been ripped to shreds. He looked on in horror at the bodies, but then one caught his eye, the small figure that had crushed the flowers. Kyrus slowly walked over to the flowers, dreading who was about to be there. The figure’s small pale hand was wrapped around a stuffed toy, in the shape of a hummingbird.
No. Kyrus thought. Please Solius no.
But he knew Solius had no hand in what was happening that night. Solius did not control the nights for the night belonged to the goddess Lumis, who was vengeful, not merciful.
Laying in the flowers, still holding on to her last day of birth’s present was his older sister Kyra. She still wore the yellow and white dress he saw her earlier at dinner, with the green stain from him flinging his spinach he refused to eat at her. She had stormed off before he could say sorry, he was only playing like he always did.
He sobbed as he held her, promising Lumis that he would eat all the spinach in the world if she would allow him to take it back. Kyrus pushed his sister's dark hair out of her slim pale face, free of any imperfections other than the numerous freckles dotted across her cheeks. Instead all of the stabs were on her torso, he dared not count, but they were as many across her body as she had freckles. Kyrus’ sobbing was interrupted by a rhythmic metallic clanging behind him.
He turned around to see where the source of the noise was coming from. Out of the north corridor that Kyrus had just emerged from, an enormous dark man, clad in armor composed of mismatched plates, woven and studded from trophy’s of defeated foes from countless battles, stepped forward. In his right hand he carried a rusted claymore blade, similar to the one he had often seen the Master of Arms, Lord Ashton, use when he sparred with Alamus. Yet, his left arm was made almost entirely out of metal. The fires of the courtyard danced off the metal as he moved it no differently than his other arm. Kyrus had never seen anything like it before, it was out of the ancient stories Rennis would tell them when Kyrus wanted to hear about heroes and legends of old. Around his left shoulder, he carried a dark brown pouch that was soaked on the bottom, his metallic arm handling it with care as he slowly walked towards Kyrus.
CLANG! CLANG! CLANG! CLANG! Rang each of his metallic steps. The man stopped in the middle of the courtyard and surveyed the landscape, just as Kyrus had done moments prior. The long, matted, and patchy dreads, some of which were dyed a vibrant blue, that were gushing out of his head bounced as he nodded his head at the carnage. He stopped his gaze when he saw Kyrus with his sister. He from himself mesmerized by the man’s eyes, the only part of his half covered face Kyrus could see. Like a predator, his yellow eyes reflected off the moonlight back at Kyrus.
The air that was once thick with death was quickly becoming engulfed by the scent of the brute, the same scent as his grandfather- the intoxicating yet nostalgic scent of the oak aged Meade, with a hint of pepper spice. Kyrus realized that he must have come from his grandfather’s study. His father had banned anyone else from entering it except for his mother. Together they had scoured through every one of his grandfather’s scrolls, letters, journals, anything of use they could use to end the war, to declare Cydra’s claim invalid. But instead, all they had found was various forms of alcohol and the best drinks to make. Every night they had been back in the capitol, his father submerged himself in there only to come out furious at his consistent failure.
The man made a false step towards him, but Kyrus was paralyzed with fear. The yellow eyed man chuckled behind his mask.
“Little boy, this Nighttalon has something for you.” he said, reaching for the pouch. Even with half his face covered, Kyrus knew the man was amused by his fear, he had to be toying with him. He did not want to wait to see what surprise the yellow man had for him. Kyrus did the only thing he could think to do.
Kyrus dropped his sister back to the ground as gently as he could before he sprinted back out of the courtyard, taking her toy with him while running towards the southern exit. The yellow eyed man made no attempt to stop him, instead just laughing as he began following Kyrus, slowly and steadily.
Kyrus ran down the southern corridor that led to his father’s throne room, desperately trying to outrun the sound of the yellow eyed man’s footsteps.
The Color Guard will be there. They will protect me. Kyrus thought.
The Color Guard were the elite sentries of the King, the mightiest warriors in Tandem, with each color representing the colors of the ruling factions of the Kingdom. Yellow for the Vallus, of the Sleeping Mountains, Red for the Strykers of the Oasis, Blue for the Rymores of the Meadowood, Green for the Zalar of the Gate Lands, Purple for the Trintons of the Frontier, and White for the Harts of the Frostlands. And the Green Sentry was the greatest of them all. It was said he single handedly slayed countless Euroman soldiers at once at the Battle of the Great Bridge, during his grandfather’s war, Alamir’s Stand. He held off the entire Euroman assault until his uncle Cydra could arrive with reinforcements. The puny rusty claymore of the yellow eyed man would be no match for the mighty tridents of the Color Guard.
He felt himself growing closer to the throne room, where he knew his father would be, surrounded by his Color Guard and the other leaders. They will already have made a plan to save Alamus, to avenge Kyra. His mother would be there, waiting for him. The clanging of the yellow eyed man behind seemed like a distant memory as he grew closer to where his father would be. Before he turned the corner to the throne room, he felt a hand grab his shoulder.
Kyrus’ pure animalistic instinct kicked in as he screamed, bit, and clawed at the hand that grabbed him. Nothing was going to stop him, he was going to make it to his parents. He was going to make it to safety. Yet the hand never let go, instead the grip tightened, yanking him towards the person. Kyrus felt himself pressed against cold steel as armored arms wrapped around him, slowly suffocating. But soon he realized, it was not an attack, it was an embrace. He finally stopped trying to fight and looked at who had grabbed him. The man was old and scruffy, bald with a white trimmed beard under a large hooked nose.
Malachi. One of his mother’s sworn shields. Kyrus quickly returned the embrace, if Malachi was here, then his mother surely could not be far. He looked around to see if his mother was already in the hallway, eager to greet him. But all he saw was Malachi’s comrade, Liad. Unlike Malachi, Liad was young with a full head of hair that flowed freely down past his collar, he kept his face clean shaven which Kyra had always liked because of his smile. Kyrus was not lost yet.
Liad returned Kyrus’ gaze with his signature smile, though it was less vibrant as it usually was. Like Malachi, Liad was clad in armor, topped with the crowned eclipse, the sigil of the Vallus, in the center. Malachi finally released Kyrus, holding him up by his shoulders as his eyes searched him all over, looking for any signs of injury.
“Prince Kyrus.” He said full of emotion, “I am…I am beyond words that you are alright. Please, come with us. We have to find your mother. Have you seen your sister?”
Kyrus could only respond with a whimper. He could not bring himself to describe what he had seen, what remained of Kyra Vallus. All he wanted was to find his mother. For her to hold him and sing him a lullaby to put him to sleep like she did just a few hours ago. He wanted his father and Alamus to emerge from doors to the throne room and purge the castle of the invaders.
The old knight looked at Kyrus empathetically, he did not have to say anymore. Instead he brought Kyrus back in and held him. Liad walked over and placed a sympathetic hand on Kyrus' shoulder. Kyurs held on to Kyra’s bird tightly as together, the three of them silently cried.
But their tender moment was quickly invaded by the sound Kyrus was quickly growing to dread.
“Normally I’d have to pay to be held like that. What a lucky boy he is.” called the yellow eyed man from the opposite end of the corridor as he unsheathed his claymore. Kyrus cringed as the rusted screech of the steel echoed throughout the empty corridor.
Liad quickly stepped in between the yellow eyed man and Malachi, still holding Kyrus. His own blade hummed as he unsheathed it. “You may make your payment in blood.” Liad spat back. “And I will send you to whatever demon you wish to hold.”
Malachi wordlessly picked Kyrus up and began walking away towards the throne room.
“What about Liad?” Kyrus asked desperately.
Malachi’s breath was heavy, “He will do his duty.”
“But he’s our friend, we can’t leave him.” Kyrus called.
Malachi did not answer. But the yellow eyed man did.
“What would be the exchange rate between my blood and suncoins? Do you think if I had a sister, she would provide a sustainable monthly income? Well if I had a sister, right boy?” he called at Kyrus.
“You will hold your tongue or I will cut it out.” cried Liad.
“Oh I can make payments with body parts? Well then,” The yellow eyed man pulled out his pouch, more soaked than before. From it, he withdrew a severed head by the locks of dark hair and presented it to Liad. The head of Alamus Vallus. “Can I get a family discount?” The yellow eyed man began laughing like never before, wheezing at his own humor.
“NOO!” screamed Kyrus over his laughs, desperately struggling to escape Malachi’s grasp. It had to be fake, it had to be a trick. Alamus was too strong to die. He finally stopped fighting and just closed his eyes, burying himself into Malachi’s neck. He wanted tonight to be over. He just wanted it to end.
The yellow eyed man continued to laugh as he quickly marched down the hallway.
“Come now Sir Knight, let me complete the whole set!” he hissed before his blade met Liad’s.
Malachi kept moving towards the throne room, carrying Kyrus in one hand with his own sword now drawn in the other. Kyrus could still hear the clashing of swords from where Liad battled the yellow eyed man, the knight’s shouting drowning out the yellow man’s jests.
They reached the grand doors to the throne room. The doors remained closed, but not locked nor barricaded. Kyrus knew it was not necessary. The door was at least ten feet tall and was hinged on massive metal brackets that groaned with each creak of the door. The handles were made of gold and were polished to a shine, reflecting the light that streamed into the room. He, Alamus, and their cousin Eldric would often use pushing the door open as a feat of strength. Alamus was the only one that was able to ever open the door, though Kyrus proudly one time made it wobble.
Malachi put Kyrus down and pushed the door open. The sound of the heavy hinges echoed through the halls. Kyrus expected to see his father surrounded by the Color Guard, ready to be unleashed, but instead all he saw were more corpses.
"What happened here?" Kyrus asked, his voice trembling with fear. He was horrified as he took in the sight before him. The once beautiful throne room was now littered with the bodies of fallen guards, their blood staining the marble floor.
Malachi did not answer. Instead his eyes were focused at the center of the room, where the Vallus throne was. Sitting on it, slumped over was Jaydance Vallus, Kyrus’ mother. Her eyes were closed while her elegant light brown hair that Kyrus would often play with as they cuddled was now a displaced mess, her once Vallus white dress in gold trim was drowned in maroon, the dagger still placed in her chest unmoved. Tears filled Kyrus's eyes as he ran towards her.
She’s just asleep. She’ll wake up.
"Mother, Mother, wake up!" he cried.
She’ll wake up. Alamus always woke up.
But no matter how much he shook her, she remained still and cold.
“My lady…” Malachi whispered, choking up as he came up behind Kyrus. He fell to one knee, his sword fell from his clanging as it bounced off the floor. “I have failed you.”
I lost Kyra. I lost Alamus. And now I’ve lost Mother. Who do I have left?
“We have to get to my father.” Kyrus said, his voice cracking as he spoke. He needed to be the little lord his mother always called him.
Malachi sniffled, nodding as he rose back to his feet. He took a deep breath and recomposed himself.
“We have to leave the castle.” He grabbed Kyrus’ hand and began to lead him to behind the throne.
“Malachi!” a voice called from across the throne room. Malachi quickly spun with his blade point at the door where Gozzo Keller stood. Unlike everyone else that night, Gozzo’s strawberry blonde hair was naturally messy, that he lazily just swept back. His eyes, a piercing teal, immediately locked onto Kyrus. “And Prince Kyrus.”
Kyrus had liked Gozzo, he was his father’s best friend, but the urgency in his voice made him uneasy. He found himself drifting to Malachi, clutching his left leg. Malachi placed a gentle hand on Kyrus’ head while keeping his blade on Gozzo.
“Thank goodness, you’re alright. We need to go, now!" Gozzo exclaimed, desperation clear in his voice.
But Malachi remained unmoved. “Where were you?”
“I’ve been holding off Cydra’s forces. They came through the southern gate, Richard Stryker and his men are slaughtering everyone in the palace. Now, please, bring Kryus with me”
But still, Malachi remained unmoved.
“King’s Mountain has fallen. You’d know that if you were with Cyrus when Cydra broke free. So, again I ask, where were you?”
Gozzo's long, skinny face contorted in frustration. "I can't explain it, Malachi," he said, his voice low. "But I swear to you, I am here to help." He took a step towards them, only for Malachi and Kyrus to take a step back.
“We don’t have time for this. Any minute now Stryker, or worse, Cydra is going to come through that door for that chair and Kyrus will meet the same fate as his family. Now, please, GIVE HIM TO ME!” Kyrus sensed that there was more to Gozzo's urgency than he was letting on. He saw the fear in Gozzo's narrow set eyes and the desperation in his large, round nose.
Malachi kept his blade on Gozzo, who still had refused to unsheath his own. Kyrus had heard his brother talk about how good of a swordsman Gozzo was. He hugged Malachi tighter, he did not want anything to happen to Malachi. He liked Malachi. “Young Kyrus, do you remember your ‘Race to the Sky’ game with your sister?” Malachi asked, a hint of nostalgia in his voice.
“Yes.” he squeeked, understanding why Malachi was originally bringing him behind the throne.
Run.” Malachi yelled as he charged Gozzo, his massive sword held high..
Kyrus ran to the hidden door in the wall behind the throne that led to a stairwell to the balcony above the throne room. He and Kyra would often race up the stairs to the balcony overlooking the throne room to where they would be “in the sky.” The balcony led to other secret passages throughout the castle, but his father had strictly forbidden using any of them for fear of the children getting lost in the catacombs.
As he reached the top of the stairs, Kyrus peered down at the intense battle between Malachi and Gozzo. Despite Malachi's immense size and powerful sword, Gozzo was proving to be a formidable opponent. Kyrus watched in awe as Gozzo expertly dodged each of Malachi's strikes, the slender rapier in his hand glinting menacingly in the dim light.
Their gazes met for a moment and Kyrus felt his heart skip a beat. He could see the determination in Malachi's eyes, and a small part of him worried for his safety. But then, as if sensing Kyrus' thoughts, Malachi's expression softened and he called out to him.
"Go, my prince. I will be okay," he lied, and Kyrus knew it. His heart raced as he took off down the spiral staircase, following the path that his father had shown him weeks prior in case of an emergency. He never thought he would actually need to use it. The stairwell led to the side of an alley, a secret escape route from the palace.
The cool air of the alleyway hit him like a brick, causing him to shiver. He couldn't hear the screams anymore, either he was too far away or they were all dead. Kyrus pushed the thoughts away, focusing on putting as much distance between him and the palace as possible.
He knew he couldn’t stop to rest, no matter how much his legs wanted him to. Kyrus made his way down the alley to the mouth of the street, riddled with empty produce stands. He turned right, running away from the palace, towards the Moon, running towards the Goddess, Lumis, hoping she will smite down the evil men that attacked his family, just as his mother told him in his bed time stories. He could feel his body giving out, he could feel his exhaustion overcoming him, his legs slowly turned to jelly with each step. Finally he collapsed on the ground, his chest heaving as he tried to catch his breath. The tears he had been holding back finally came, his sobs echoing in the stillness of the city. He sluggishly crawled to the tipped over barrel on its side, climbing in.
Kyrus curled up into a ball, hugging Kyra’s toy bird as he cried. He didn't know what to do, where to go. He was lost, alone, and scared. His whimpers became a lullaby to him, slowly putting him to sleep. Eventually, he felt oblivion take him, and his dreams of a happy place took over.
Kyrus was awoken at sunrise, the warm rays of the sun filtering through the narrow gaps between the buildings in the alley. He rubbed his eyes, trying to shake off the remnants of his dreams. He looked around, taking in his surroundings. He was in a small alley, surrounded by tall buildings that stretched high into the sky. Empty produce stalls lined the street, and the sounds of people going about their day were starting to fill the air. Kyrus sat up, feeling a wave of nausea wash over him. He rubbed his temples, trying to steady himself, before he finally vomited. With each hurl he remembered the chaos from the previous night, the sounds of fighting, the screams of people in pain, the bodies. He wondered what had happened, what had become of his father, Malachi, and the rest of the palace. He felt a knot of fear form in his stomach.
Kyrus looked down at himself, seeing his fine silk tunic covered in dirt, dried blood, and now vomit. He tried to remember how he had ended up here, in this alley. He had a vague recollection of running from the palace, of finding a barrel to hide in. He remembered crying himself to sleep, exhausted from the fear and adrenaline of the night before.
He heard the sounds of the crowd growing louder, and he realized that they were getting closer. He could hear them shouting, calling out to one another. He cautiously peered out of the alley and saw that they were rushing towards the Coliseum. He listened closely, trying to make out what they were saying.
"To the Coliseum! The King is going to execute the traitors!" they cried.
Kyrus felt a surge of hope. Could it be that his father was alive? That he had defeated the traitors who had attacked the palace?
He followed the crowd to the Coliseum, no one paying attention to another young boy covered in mud. As he approached the Coliseum, he could hear the roar of the crowd. The Coliseum was a massive structure, towering over the city as a symbol of the King's power. Its outer walls were made of rough, gray stone blocks that had been quarried from the nearby mountains. The blocks were held together with a mixture of mud and ash, lending the walls a crude, unrefined appearance. However, the inside of the Coliseum was a different story. The walls were adorned with intricate carvings, depicting scenes of gladiatorial battles, wild beasts, and the triumph of good over evil. The seats were made of polished marble and surrounded a central arena, which was made of sand and dirt, perfect for the staged fights. The King's Balcony was located at the highest point of the Coliseum, providing an unobstructed view of the entire arena. It was Kyrus’ favorite place to go. The balconies were made of the finest marble, smooth with rounded edges. He enjoyed rubbing his hands along the stone as he watched the fights. Kyrus pushed his way through the crowd, eager to get a good view of the proceedings. When he finally reached the bottom of the stands, he looked out at the arena, his heart pounding with anticipation
Kyrus funneled his way in through the crowd. Normally, there was a piece of coin to be paid to enter, but the men were cheering that the King had waived the fees for the executions. Kyrus proudly made his way to the front, to find his father about to bestow justice upon the men responsible for Alamus, Kyra, and his mother’s death. He smiled at the thought of the yellow eyed man getting fed to a drake. With each step down towards the pit, his confidence rose. His life was not over, his father was still alive. He finally reached the bottom of the stands, eagerly scanning the field for a familiar face. But all he saw was a young gladiator standing in the center, standing over another slain, his sword raised high above his head as he played to the crowd.
“Zotikos! Zotikos! Zotikos!” the crowd chanted.
The fat man waddled towards the center of the Coliseum, his flabby jowls bouncing with every step. He was dressed in a lavish purple toga, trimmed with golden thread and studded with precious gems. His hair was greasy and slicked back, revealing a shiny bald spot at the crown of his head. He had a thick beard, speckled with bits of food and bits of golden jewelry woven into it. His demeanor was one of grandeur, as he held his chins high and puffed out his chest. He strutted around the arena, basking in the adulation of the crowd as they cheered for the new champion, Zotikos.
“Citizens of King’s Mountain, I give you our new Champion, Zotikos!” the fat man called.
The crowd erupted as Zotikos pounded his chest in triumph, while Kyrus's gaze was fixed on the King's Balcony, his heart racing as he searched for any sign of his father. The King's seat was empty, but he could see the Yellow and Red Sentries standing at attention near a young boy and girl.
Kyrus yelped in joy. They woke up!
He started cheering with the crowd as he looked at Alamus and Kyra on the King's Balcony. But Kyrus's heart quickly sank as he realized something was off. Alamus was almost as tall as the Yellow Sentry, but the boy was over a head shorter. The girl was almost full grown, not a little girl like Kyra. They were not his family.
The fat man continued to speak, “All hail to the King! Our Grace, Cydra!”
“HAIL CYDRA!” the crowd echoed back.
Kyrus violently shook his head as he watched the imposter King strutted into the arena with an air of confidence and arrogance, escorted by the Green and White Sentries. He wore a long, dark black coat made of velvet, trimmed with gold filigree and adorned with precious gems that sparkled in the bright sun. The coat had a high collar and was fastened with gold buttons, engraved with the Vallus crest. Underneath the coat, he wore a white silk tunic that was tucked into tight-fitting black pants made of fine leather. On his feet, he wore knee-high black leather boots with gold buckles. He The false King wore his father’s crown, he wore his father’s face, but he was not Cyrus Vallus. Cydra enthusiastically played to the crowd, waving and pointing to various citizens to get cheered. Behind him, the Purple and Blue Sentries dragged a one armed prisoner who Kyrus recognized with a sickening lurch in his stomach. His father.
While Cydra had elegant clothes, Kyrus’ father’s clothes were shredded, his hair disheveled, but the most alarming thing about him was his loss of his right arm. Cyrus held the bloody and cauterized stump tenderly as he was forced to his knees in front of his brother.
Cydra looked down on Cyrus with disdain, repeatedly flexing his own right hand, but he quickly put on a more welcoming expression as he turned to the crowd. "My people," he called out, his voice ringing throughout the Coliseum as he began pacing in front of Cyrus. "The war is over. As you can see, my treacherous brother has finally surrendered to me, and more importantly, to all of you.”
Kyrus could feel the anger and hatred boil inside him as he watched his uncle gloat over his defeated father. Cydra continued, "No more blood will be shed in pursuit of his ambition. Those who foolishly joined his rebellion have been dealt with. Together, we will now enter an era of unprecedented peace."
Kyrus could feel the Coliseum begin to shake from the crowd erupting into cheers, but to him, it was his world crashing all around him.
“But, there are crimes that my brother must answer for. For even the Vallus must answer to Harmos.” he shifted his gaze back to his brother.
“Cyrus Vallus, you are charged with treason, sedition, and murder against your rightful King, what do you have to say for yourself?”
Cyrus remained kneeling with his head hung low, unmoved by his brother’s words.
“Very well.” He unsheathed Night’s Edge, the family sword of the Vallus, “I, Cydra Vallus, rightful High King of Tandem, Lord of King’s Mountain, hereby sentence you to death. May Solius, Lumis, and Harmos bring you the peace in the afterlife that you were unable to experience while you were here.”
“Zotikos!” Cydra called out to the joy of the Coliseum. The new gladiator champion dutifully came forward and bowed before the King. Kyrus strained to hear what was being said between Cydra and Zotikos, but the roar of the crowd was too loud. He saw the gladiator shake his head, gesturing towards his father who was unarmed and beaten. Cydra's face contorted in anger, shouting at the gladiator who stood firm in his refusal.
Finally, Cydra took a step back and gave a curt nod, waving him away.
“The King will carry out the sentence!” declared Cydra.
Cydra turned back to his brother and Cydra raised Night’s Edge, Cyrus finally looked at his brother. What he spoke, Kyrus could not hear, but Cydra reacted with a scream and with a single swipe of the blade, Cyrus Vallus fell to the ground and was no more.
Kryus screamed, but his voice was drowned out by the cheering crowd. For what seemed like an eternity, Kyrus stood there, unable to turn away from his father’s contorted corpse in front of him. Hot tears streamed down his face as he wished with all his heart that he had the power to turn back time. Like Kyrus, Cydra’s eyes had not left his father’s body. His breathing was heavy and irregular. Kyrus felt his mourning slowly turn to rage. Rage against Cydra. Hatred against his faction. Against his family.
He looked down at his feet to where a little bronze lizard had crawled from out of a crack in the stone floor. Its bulbous eyes wide and alert as it surveyed its surroundings while it remained still. Someone moved to behind Kyrus causing the lizard’s head to swivel in his direction, its tongue flicking out to taste the air, but Kyrus was too focused on the lizard to care. All he wanted to do was stomp it.
Before he could, a strong hand grabbed his shoulder and pulled him close. Kyrus did not bother to fight back anymore.The overpowering smell of cigars filled his nostrils as he looked up to see a man he had never seen before. The man's rugged features were covered by a thick, dark red beard. Deep lines were etched on his hard face, yet his hazel eyes were soft as they stared into Kyrus.
The man’s hand moved from Kryus' shoulder to the back of his head and yanked his hair back hard, making him wince in pain. The man's deep voice boomed, "Kyrus Vallus is dead, boy."
“Kyrus Vallus is dead, boy.” he thundered. "And you would do well to remember that." His voice was low and menacing. Kyrus nodded silently, unable to speak, hoping his obedience would cause the man to release him, but he never did. Instead Kyrus felt himself being dragged away from the Coliseum by the back of his hair, the smell of cigars leading the way. The man never said a word and his grip on Kryus' hair never loosened. The only thing tighter was Kyrus’ grip on his sister’s toy bird.
“Kyrus Vallus is dead.” the man repeated one last time.
submitted by Brendanlendan to fantasywriters [link] [comments]

2023.03.15 10:59 EvilMonkeyPaw True Colors - 18

There is such a thing as too relaxed.
A wrap-up of sorts to the first arc to Xander's and the Bjornholm crew's story. Moving forward, I want to focus the story more on Xander as as an individual since the setting so far mainly has him reacting in, at least from my point of view, kind of a bland way as just a part of a group. Maybe some time away from them will help?
As always, thanks for reading!
Xander’s life had been a constant stream of activity this past month. For the first few days, there were repairs to help with on the Bjornholm. After arriving at Felhaven, he had to worry about keeping in the mayor’s, and the local’s, good graces as well as dealing with first contact with the Theocracy, despite that prospect basically being dead on arrival. When they were on the road, everyone was on alert since they were most certainly in a foreign land and on the lookout for bandits or wild animals. Finally, when they neared the city, there had been the meeting with the king to be concerned with.
But all that had since been taken care of, and despite the ungodly hour, they had managed to get in contact with Captain Sinclair through the use of, what the king had called, a viewing mirror. The magical device functioned exactly like Xander imagined it would, the surface of the ornate vanity mirror rippling like mercury before an image of one of Atha’s arcanists that stayed at the town came into view. After wrapping up their business with the town, the Bjornholm would be underway within the next two days and arriving at the end of the following week. Their only order until then was to get to know the city and its people better, so, for the next eleven days or so, despite the term ‘dignitary’ being used, they were little more than glorified tourists. They would each be paired with a guard in the morning to act as both a tour guide, and to make sure they didn’t wander somewhere they shouldn’t.
King Lucen, Tarod, and Okoda had come to an agreement that, in order to ease the concerns of several high ranking members of the Imperial Army as well as members of the Assembly at having completely foreign soldiers so close to the royal family, they’d be heading to a nearby inn for the remainder of their stay until the Bjronholm arrived. For tonight, though, they’d been shown to the guest rooms of the palace, with an increase in guard detail around the guest wing as a precaution. Xander couldn’t exactly say he was happy to be placed under guard, but he understood the necessity.
The crystal sconces in the room were already lit to a comfortable level when he entered.
While undoubtedly opulent, like the rest of the palace, the architects of the guest rooms seemed to revel in a simpler, natural beauty that highlighted the construction of the building rather than hiding it behind gaudy decoration. Accented with silver filigree at their base, dark, oil-polished wood beams curved elegantly towards the ceiling, framing the plaster walls decorated with landscape paintings, that, themselves were framed with rich wood and bronze. A four poster bed dominated the center of the room, and as Xander set his rucksack down next to it, he was surprised to find the mattress was luxuriously soft, with just a slight springiness. Off to the side, a doorway led to the bathroom where he was ecstatic to discover that hot running water existed in this world. The faucets bore striking resemblance to their Earthen analogues, and, though the design looked extremely antiquated, it only took a little bit of experimenting to discover how the odd brass-and-marble knobs controlled the water temperature to both the sink and the massive, hot-tub-looking, stone basin that served as a bathtub.
Xander ran a hand over his stubble. Y’know, I can’t remember the last time I actually had a bath bath. Let’s see what we have here… he thought as he perused a tray placed on the bathroom counter containing what appeared to be an assortment of perfumes and liquid soaps. While he had been getting better with the Cadonian alphabet, and could pronounce the words on the labels, he had little idea what many of the names actually meant, so he picked a few vials with scents he liked, namely ones that smelled of vanilla, cinnamon, and some unidentified flowery fruity smell.
Five minutes later, dressed in only his birthday suit, he eased himself into the hot bubbly water. He hissed contentedly as he settled into a corner of the tub, flexing his back in a series of satisfying pops and stretching his arms to rest on the sides of the tub. The fragrant water came up almost to his shoulders as the relaxing warmth started to seep into his core.
“This is the life… hah, always wanted to say that…” He chuckled to himself as he leaned his head back and closed his eyes, remembering the old cartoons he used to stream as a kid. This was the first chance he’d had to relax and reflect on everything that had transpired since… well… he didn’t know how long.
As his mood dampened with the realization, Xander let out a melancholy sigh and rubbed his face before checking his personal tactical computer. The small, multi function, waterproof, touch screen device was an evolution of the smartwatches from a few decades ago. His model, a ruggedized variant developed for the military, was about the size of a pager, and could either be worn by itself as an extremely bulky wristwatch, or could be securely clipped into matching docks sewn into both wrists of his uniform. A quick firmware update by the ship’s computer techs had enabled the device to track the time according to local standards with the option of enabling a second readout that displayed the equivalent time on Earth.
He’d resisted the urge to enable the Earth-time display since they’d left, but as he allowed his thoughts to drift to his aunt and uncle, having never known his parents, he wondered how they must have felt when they received the news that the Bjornholm had gone missing. What were they even told? How would the government explain away their disappearance? Could they even explain it away? Would they even be able to return?
With those questions burning in his mind, he enabled the Earth-time clock.
Forty-three days. We haven’t even been here one month by their standards but we’ve already been gone almost a month and a half… How the hell did time pass so fast?
As a feeling of axiety, or sorrow, he couldn’t tell which, welled in his chest, he rubbed his eyes with one hand before letting it fall limply back into the water with a splash.
I know neither of you can hear me but… well, I hope you both know I’m alright. We’ll find a way back. It may take a while but we’ll find a way back, and when we do, boy will we have one hell of a story to tell… He thought with a wry smile.
Breathing deeply of the fragrant bathwater, Xander closed his eyes and tried to push those troubling thoughts aside. Ten minutes later, he was snoring gently as the combination of the warmth and the exhaustion of the past two weeks caught up with him.
Well… this is different… Xander pondered as he found himself standing at the crest of a small rise. He was in the middle of a large grassy plain, not too dissimilar to the landscape north of Felhaven that he’d crossed through not two weeks ago. It was mid morning and the wildflowers were in full bloom, adding large irregular splotches of color to the verdant fields. As he looked around, he saw the landscape wasn’t perfectly flat, it undulated gently up and down, with small outcroppings of stone, long since overgrown, interspersed throughout. The variations in the land were never so great as to obstruct his vision of the horizon, however, and as he squinted, he saw a treeline far off in the distance, though exactly how far he couldn’t say. He found his gaze being drawn upwards, and it took him a moment to register exactly what it was he was looking at.
Those are mountains… no way… that’s- they’re too big… way too big… He realized. Off in the distance, almost inconceivably far away, blending into the sky from the atmospheric haze despite the near perfectly clear air, spanned a mountain ridge that defied conventional scale. These weren’t evil looking crags of exposed rock, rather they were long-weathered peaks, soft in their contours and covered in forest save for their upper reaches which were dusted white.
Looking further up, the nearly white light blue of the sky on the horizon shifted to a deeper, truer blue, before blending into blackness. As Xander craned his neck back the first stars came into view along with a subtle shift in the color of the blackness, both of which increased the higher he looked until the scene more closely resembled the star specked insides of a gaseous nebula, like a window into the cosmos with the light of twin suns illuminating the land. Shielding his eyes, as the field of stars and colored gasses filled his view, he felt almost like he could start to fall up into it.
With a shiver, he closed his eyes and lowered his head at the thought. The concept of infinity unnerved him, it was why he didn’t like deep water or deep space. In both cases, it was easy to imagine the inky blackness just going on forever, swallowing someone up and leaving them eternally lost if they strayed too far.
As Xander raised his head and his eyes snapped open, he found himself staring into a bathroom mirror. He lowered his head over the sink and spat out the water that he’d been gargling, trying to wash the putrid taste of his half-digested dinner out of his mouth. The Bjornholm was rocking violently up and down as the storm winds whipped the ocean up into an angry froth. He felt the familiar increase in weight as the next swell started to pick the ship back up.
Wait. I know this, this already happened. So this has to be a dream… He realized as he vaguely recalled the ship’s sudden descent throwing him to the floor. Preparing for the ship to drop suddenly, he braced himself against the sink.
[Mmh, yes and no…] A deep, rumbling voice answered, sounding as if it came from all around him. It sounded almost thoughtful in how it responded, as if whoever was answering was trying to decide on the best way to explain some foreign concept.
Caught off-guard, Xander briefly released his grip on the sink.
“Who s-” was all he managed before the ship rebounded off the ocean surface and the last thing he saw was a sink full of water rapidly approaching his face.
submitted by EvilMonkeyPaw to HFY [link] [comments]

2023.03.13 21:16 notanolduser [PSX] w: talismans, h: ask, mule

I accidentally gave some talismans away and would like them back.
Shard of Alexander Great-jar’s arsenal Erdtree’s favor +2 Carian filigreed’s crest Kindred of rot’s exultation Taker’s cameo Gold scarab Silver scarab
submitted by notanolduser to PatchesEmporium [link] [comments]

2023.03.13 03:24 fazbearbw Ps4 W: Carian Filigreed Crest, and raptor’s chest piece H: ask

This is a new character. Password is tofu
submitted by fazbearbw to PatchesEmporium [link] [comments]

2023.03.12 18:10 Thunderhank Just started NG+. Would it be more beneficial to use Bull-Goat’s Talisman over the Carian Filigree?

Just started NG+. Would it be more beneficial to use Bull-Goat’s Talisman over the Carian Filigree? submitted by Thunderhank to EldenRingBuilds [link] [comments]

2023.03.10 09:48 Ornery_Good7963 [PC] W: Shard of Alexander, Carian Filigreed Crest, Fingerprint Stone Shield and stack of lord's runes H: +karma

submitted by Ornery_Good7963 to PatchesEmporium [link] [comments]

2023.03.07 19:44 ChaoticFairness Make my garbage Level 85 Build even better, please!

Make my garbage Level 85 Build even better, please! submitted by ChaoticFairness to EldenRingBuilds [link] [comments]

2023.03.06 05:40 jew192 [PSX] [W]ant shard of Alexander, fire scorpion charm, carina filigreed crest [H]ave karma, ask

submitted by jew192 to PatchesEmporium [link] [comments]

2023.03.03 12:16 stopwonking ps5 w: carian filgreed crest, magic scorpion charm, clawmark seal h:ask, mule, karma

submitted by stopwonking to PatchesEmporium [link] [comments]

2023.03.03 08:14 PRIME_NXUS ps5 w: carian filgreed crest, magic scorpion charm h: ask, mule, karma

submitted by PRIME_NXUS to PatchesEmporium [link] [comments]

2023.02.26 20:46 Taro2002 Im looking for a Dex Faith Arcane build? PvE

Im replaying the game and idk how to max my abilities properly. Rn looking for like a Reduvia + Black knife build or dual katanas build (something with blood loss or faith scaling like the black knife combo) , also using blood loss and dragon communion incantantations.
My stats are atm (samurai bc i changed my build midgame with Rennalla) Lv 52 Vigor 21 Mind 13 Endurance 17 Strenght 12 Dexterity 25 Int 9 Faith 20 Arcane 14 Im using Reduvia + Black Knife mostly with the dragon communion seal and the scarlet rot incantation, ocassionally dual uchigatanas + blood slash applied on both. Also equipped the Radagon soreseal and the carian crest mostly
submitted by Taro2002 to Eldenring [link] [comments]

2023.02.24 23:48 NemeBro17 Insights on class and setup for Hand of Malenia build.

Hey all, so I'm considering redoing my initial playthrough (straight dex) with a gifted Hand of Malenia from a friend of mine so I can style on her with her own sword and having a bit of choice paralysis regarding class and build. Constants in build are the iron kasa helmet (because it's fucking cool), the beast champion set armour, a pulley bow as my secondary right hand, and an uchigatana, a second hand after beating Malenia, or MAYBE a Nagakiba. Three talismans consistent through build are Carian Filigreed Crest, Shard of Alexander, and Rotten Wing Sword Insignia.
Stats are:
Vigor: 60
Mind: 10 or 20
Endurance: 28 or 38
Strength: 16 (18 if Naga offhand is the way to go)
Dexterity: 80
Intelligence: not leveled
Faith: not leveled
Arcane: not leveled
For class it comes down to Vagabond vs. Samurai, and which is better depends on whether going up to 20 mind is better than getting an extra 10 points in endurance from Vagabond. The pros for the former is more waterfowl use, the latter will have me be tankier because I can skip great jar arsenal (with samurai and 20 mind I end up heavy rolling without it) and rock the dragon greatshield talisman for big damage mitigation.
As for build, feel free to comment on anything already listed, but I'm also struggling to think of what my offhand weapon should be or even if I should have one. Hand of Malenia provides the highest raw AR but provides no new WA whereas Uchi could. If Uchi is the better way to go what WA would you guys suggest? And as for Nagakiba I'm aware that it is strictly considered superior to Uchi overall but it would entail putting 2 more points into strength.
Any suggestions or help are appreciated.
submitted by NemeBro17 to Eldenring [link] [comments]

2023.02.20 20:54 00Dylan Can I get Carian Filigreed Crest if I did not ask Blaidd after killing the guy he was hunting?

I failed to ask Blaidd about his blacksmithing friend after defeating the guy he was hunting at forlorn hound evergaol.
Is there a way I can find Blaidd and ask about Iji?
submitted by 00Dylan to Eldenring [link] [comments]

2023.02.17 11:18 Foreign-Drag-4059 Carian Combo Warriors isn't doing anything

I've tried like, 8 different ways of installing the Carian Combo Warriors, but other than the Carian Filigree crest, and letting me put AoW on unique weapons, it's not actually doing anything. It doesn't actually change any of the move sets at all. I know I'm supposed to use mod loader 2, and I have tried that, and another Mod loader, in like 4 different ways each. It's just not doing anything. Any clue why it would not work?
submitted by Foreign-Drag-4059 to EldenRingMods [link] [comments]