TownCrier/Faction Attraction/Echoes of War

The official GemStone IV encyclopedia.
< TownCrier‎ | Faction Attraction
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This is a creative work set in the world of Elanthia, attributed to its original author(s). It does not necessarily represent the official lore of GemStone IV.

Title: Faction Attraction - Echoes of War


Deep in the cold north, a new, blossoming government manifests slowly, forming an identity of freedom distinct from Empire or the Elven Nations. Dubbed Northwatch, that diversity now houses the krolvin, the giants, practitioners of blood magic, and other controversial means ideologies. Its government, firm but fair, operates within the confines of Icemule's judicial system and the eventual constitution of Northwatch, fashioned by the men and women of Briarmoon Cove, Icemule Trace, Cold River, Pinefar, the Giant tribes, the krolvin survivors of Glaoveln. Unlike in most towns, local militia, known as the Regulators of the Northern Frontier, patrol the lands. However, with the expansion of threats near the Frostmain, another fighting force rears its head to deal with ships of the nautical variety. Led by Loralaii, this pirate faction carries the banner of the North, shielding away adversaries from crashing into the northern shores. This is Echoes of War.


You see Necrotic Admiral Loralaii N'Harren the Northwarden.

She appears to be a Giantman of the Vaikalimara Clan.
She is shorter than average and has a particularly plump figure. She appears to be immature. She has violet-ringed nebulous grey eyes and tanned skin. She has very long, sun-damaged ebon-hazed purple hair gathered into a mass of intricate braids, the ends dangling several golden pieces of eight. She has big hips. She appears to have a sap-filled wrotwood globule in her eye socket.
She has a tiny red crystal rose in her left nostril, a discolored and crooked pickle tattoo on her finger, a hempen-hued inked noose dangling a dead pirate on her neck, an inked skeletal hand draped across the back of her hand, a crossed green pair of pickles tattoo on her wrist, a jack-o-lantern tattoo inked within a cobweb-like mist on her neck, a black deathstone stud in her lip, and a black-inked skull and crossbones wearing a sanguine-hued crown of molded flesh on her neck.
She is in good shape.
A knobby sentient potato wearing an orange and yellow jack'o'lantern costume is settled on her shoulder.
She has a chrome faewood arrow stuck in her right leg.
Her ankle bone is exposed, a fine trail of ichor green pus and blood trickling from an open wound where a smooth bone anklet pierced by tiny crystal shards rests.
She is holding some candied lemon lipbalm in her right hand.
Her form is concealed within the folds of a violet-tinged nacre velvet robe with ermine tippet sleeves.


My travels took me to the harsh cold, the tundra of Icemule Trace. It was where I was reborn, a fresh start meant for the strong, the bold, the hardened. It was here where I met Loralaii, who I had known from a mutual friend named Illumiada. After several hunts, Lora and I became friends, and I've always enjoyed her kind yet firm demeanor -- she is not one to tolerate foolish or surly behavior. We met in Town Center in Icemule Trace, though it was surprising to not see the other members of the Echoes of War. Perhaps the night was busy. Yardie waves at Loralaii.

Loralaii waves to you.
Loralaii ponders.
Loralaii: Maaaybe?

Yardie: Heya. Doing a bit of work for the Town Crier. I was hoping to do an interview with Echoes of War?

Loralaii nods to you.

Yardie: Do you have a base of operations or the like?

Loralaii nods to you.

The Echo Chamber

The Snowcat's Den, Common Room
Guarded by a long counter of dark-stained pine, the common room's bar boasts an impressive array of spirits in pristine bottles that come in all of the colors of the rainbow. Several leather-upholstered stools sit along the counter's outer edge. A half wall behind the bar provides a glimpse of the inn's kitchen and its hearths, above which game birds and other meats roast on wooden spits. Nearby, a carved white pine stairway ascends to the second story.

As this is one of the newer houses, there is often no erected base of operations. I found the Snowcat's Den fitting of Icemule, rough exterior, warm interior, the frost no obstacle for the feeling of home.

Loralaii: We like to spend time here.

Yardie: Never been here. But a rather interesting place. I take it you're stationed at the heart of Icemule?

Loralaii holds up her hand and tilts it side to side in a so-so gesture. We prefer to be closer to the docks, but still a stones throw Icemule's heart.

Icemule has had major changes as of late. Krolvin refugees are making the Arctic their home, even going as far as to practice and share their knowledge of blood magic. While this did bring about some scrutiny, the vote passed making it legal in the Trace. Throw in rumors of Sabercross, a missing artifact of Kai, and vampires not too far away; the dangers of land are commonplace but known. The oceans are another story, and with the Frostmain Docks comes new threats. Pirates. Such proximity to the ocean makes the Echoes of War quick to strike and protect.

Yardie chuckles at Loralaii. I like that a lot.

Loralaii adopts an agreeable expression.
Loralaii: So do we.

What is Echoes of War?

Yardie: So, for the first question: What would you say Echoes of War is all about? What would you say is its identity?

Loralaii: In a word, sell swords. Peace keepers.

Immediately, my curiosity piqued. It's not common for hired hands to outright admit their work. From my experiences, a professional never admitted their trade unless they were foolish...or effective. Somehow, I felt the latter, but I decided to press on.

Yardie (curiously): Sell swords?

Loralaii nods.

Loralaii: We will defend the fattest purse.

Another surprise. This was not the "balance" rhetoric of the Dae'randir or even following The Way. This was direct and to the point. No nonsense. But, in truth, it is something expected from Loralaii. She has never shied away from forthrightness.

Yardie: So mercenaries for hire, then?

Loralaii: In not such an ugly term.

Yardie chuckles. Loralaii: We had an agreement with the last group of government that as long we keep Icemule safe, no one will harass us. And it's worked well.

Unfamiliar with the governing bodies of Icemule, I wondered who were those involved.

Yardie: Fair enough. Is this only with Icemule governments or others?

Loralaii: That's something I care not to discuss. Loralaii grins.

Again, the honesty, or, in this case, professional courtesy.

The First Traces of Echoes

Yardie: Understood. Next question: How did Echoes of War come to existence? How did you all come to be?

Loralaii: This has several stories, but the main, I suppose, would be I got tired of complaining. I was unhappy with how Icemule was run, so I put my money where my mouth was. And here we are. Loralaii grins.

It is easy to lose faith in governments. There is enough evidence to point out how those bodies become compromised and corrupt. I have always maintained that when people don't have the resources or clout to fight their enemies at the negotiating table, they take their negotiations to the streets. In this case, they take their negotiations to the seas, where maritime laws are scarce and often ignored.

Yardie: So it started with you, then? Were there any others?

Loralaii: My husband and myself, originally.

Yardie (sheepishly): Who's your husband again?

Loralaii: Lord Whirlin N'Harren..

I'm familiar with Whirlin. It was sad to see he was not present in this interview. Loralaii always handled herself accordingly.

Yardie nods at Loralaii. I know the name and the person a bit.

Loralaii grins. He is well liked.

Yardie: So I have heard.

Loralaii: Then the Ta'Mori joined.

The Ta'Mori Clan is a rather controversial sort, even for Faendryl. Truthfully, I am not familiar with the history of the enigmatic clan. Still, from my observations, they espouse a rather...stringent view of how the Faendryl should conduct themselves and spread their influence. Many would argue their methods to be cruel, even diabolical, but others, especially those a part of the family would point out that their unity is something all Faendryl should strive for in the advancement of their people. I...have little opinion on the matter, as my experiences have been rather amiable, while aware of many of the crimes and accusations. Perhaps it is something I could better explore one day.

The Ta'Mori and Echoes of War

Yardie: I'm curious as to how the Ta'Mori took up the charge of Echoes of War. That's rather remarkable and surprising.

Loralaii: Mystiq and I are soul sisters; it was a natural progression for our families to merge.

Now, this was unexpected. I know blood bonds - by marriage, a pact, or something else. I also know about bonds that go beyond blood. My brothers and I are not bound by blood, but that connection runs deep. But I know very little of soul bonds save for those instilled by clerics when bringing back the dead. There are rumors of those clerics siphoning a piece of someone's soul for their purposes. However, empathic magic usually aligns with emotions and perhaps the soul as well. If true, this would make empaths far more dangerous than I anticipated -- and Loralaii & Mystiq are both of that skillset.

Yardie: So the Ta'Mori and the N'Harren merged? Unique to see Faendryl do such in a fashion like this.

Loralaii: We don't traipse around announcing things. We just work in silence and it's a beautiful thing.

I can appreciate working in silence, and its beauty.

Yardie: Much like the Ta'Mori...much like the Faendryl. Unique to see that position with a welcome one nonetheless.

Loralaii: Precisely. No one will see it coming.

I certainly didn't. Impressive. The prospect of Faendryl and giantmen aligned together? Best of both worlds, to be frank.

Other Members

Yardie: This leads to the next question. Could you tell us more about your members? Are there any of note you wish to mention?

Loralaii: Our membership is...small. But effective. Always looking for willing crew.

Yardie: Any you wish to mention by name? And I see you have formed a nautical force?

Loralaii: Right now, I am comfortable with telling you myself, my husband, Mystiq and her husband Darphin.

Loralaii would hide her hand for a lucrative payoff if this were a card game. I found it peculiar in a pirate outfit leaning towards anonymity, but it made their existence more curious.

Membership Requirements

Yardie: I respect anonymity. So I'll accept that. For newcomers, are there any requirements to join the Echoes of War?

Loralaii: Not that we are a secret, but others identities is not mine to divulge. Just a love of the sea and a heart to protect The Frostmain. It's that simple.

Yardie: They do not need to be a native to it Frostwatch? Icewatch? Coldwatch?

Loralaii': Northwatch. And no, we're pirates after all.

As Northwatch remains relatively new and sounds similar to Mistwatch, the gaffe is not unexpected. Still, with these new factions forming a play on the sea, it makes sense. Perhaps it is the paranoia of the Panicky Phantom kicking in, but I feel there are pieces being set on the world board, readying for defense and attack. Echoes of War is a substantial piece that does not align with conventional means. That's just a hunch I have.

Maritime Musings

Yardie: I'll ask the question as an aside regarding piracy: Do you have any alliances with other nautical factions? There are quite a few throughout Elanthia.

Loralaii: We are friendly with RYSK and The Free Captains Company. We have yet to join forces.

Yardie: I'm familiar with both. The latter is definitely not a pirate faction, the former well....RYSK is....rather versatile.

Before the Free Captain's Company came into being, its leader often patrolled the seas in search of pirates, preferring Krolvin and the Undead for their bounties. If the Free Captain's Company operated under a similar banner, I'm certain they are the furthest thing from a pirate faction. It would make the prospect of allegiances difficult. The Raise Your Stout Krew, or RYSK is often called despite the glaring misspelling, leans more toward piracy, though that remains up for debate. I plan on interviewing them soon.

Loralaii: It's comforting to know our ports are so well protected. Not pirate per se, just the seafaring life. And I assume the Fall's group is still going strong?

Yardie: It is. There are quite a few groups out there, and the Kraken Collective has a healthy allotment of ships.

I've previously interviewed the Kraken Collective. Though I would not call, the nautical influence with the number of ships in Kraken's Fall is more than impressive and formidable to keep the Folly safe. And, of course, we operate under our waters without needing outside help. I imagine the Echoes of War wish to follow a similar sentiment while keeping friends close.

Loralaii: Good, good. We are trying to get our name out there a little more than we have in the past. This year, we plan to be very active.


Yardie: Sadly I missed the event you had two weeks ago. My next question involves events. Are there any events that you plan on running or have in store?

For the Day of Vornais and Laethe, the Echoes of War held a host of events, including a kissing booth extending beyond Icemule. Despite the sentiment of battle, they were and are a rather cheerful sort with business is not involved.

Loralaii: Oh yes, many.

Yardie: Any upcoming?

Loralaii: We will go sailing regularly and other light-hearted, fun events soon. I know Mystiq wanted to speak with you regarding a cruise.

Loralaii snickers. Yardie blinks at Loralaii. Yes. She did. I am apt to run that.

I should correct myself and say that I am not running it. That honor goes to Mystiq. But I will remain vague on the particularities, as the idea is a well-crafted one. Though, I hope that whoever partakes in it will enjoy and get to see the Echoes of War in their element of the sea.

Do you have a set day as to when you sail?

Loralaii: Without looking at my calendar, I believe we committed to the third Restday of each month.

Yardie nods at Loaralaii.

How To Join

Yardie: For future prospects, who should they approach or speak to about learning more about Echoes of War?

Loralaii: Myself, Mystiq or Darphin. Lithyia and I are also in the works of something fun as well.

Yardie grins at Loralaii. Lithyia's quite the organizer.

For those unfamiliar, Lithyia the Gossip is a citizen of Icemule, and a grand organizer of many things involving libations and foodstuffs. She's also quite handy with a blade and one of the more recent members of the Dae'randir. If it involves bringing people together to eat, drink, and be merry, Lithyia is often the person that people would speak to first to make arrangements. She also has a store where she sells goods and does other business. I'm not appreciative of her touching my brown sugar, but that is a subject matter for another day.

Loralaii: She really is! Loralaii grins at you and nods. We are going to try to hold regular meetings so people can come and ask questions, take a cruise, and see if it is the life for them. All of which I will announce or post.

Yardie: That's a rather good thing. I think there are many who have curiosities about the seas, but are timid to discuss them.

Loralaii: I've helped so many find the love of the sea. I imagine Niima and Charl would be rather proud.

Yardie: Do you have any landmarks aside from the Snowcat's Den? I imagine you have the ship. The...Chicken, correct?
Loralaii starts chortling at Yardie. Terrifying Murky Black Chicken.
Yardie (musing): So many Murky Black items.

For further context, my carrack is known as the Lucky Murky Black Snake. It is not the only Murky Black vessel out in the seas.

Loralaii: We can mostlly be found in Town Center of Icemule. We conduct business here, usually. Loralaii's black comet goldfish swims right up to the edge of its glass fishbowl and puts its bulbous eyes against the fishbowl's glass walls. Loralaii's sentient potato hums an epic melody, filled with complexities!

Closing and Final Thoughts

Yardie: Perfectly logical. Well, I only have one question remaining, or rather one aspect remaining. Would you like to leave a parting note about Echoes of War?

Loralaii: There are no stupid questions. If you're interested, ask us. She smiles.

Yardie: Thank you, Lora. I appreciate it. I hope to have this published in a couple of weeks. I appreciate your time and I'll be apt to work on the cruise.
Loralaii applauds Yardie, then hugs him, a faint scent of pitch, resin, and dead flowers around her wafts through the air. My pleasure.

I tend to underestimate spiritual magic, but suddenly, I returned to Town Central. It caught me off guard, admittedly.

Yardie: Oh wow, that

Loralaii: The expressway.

As Northwatch takes shape and forms its identity, new obstacles and setbacks will chisel out its foundation as it becomes something greater. Krolvin alliances, giant alliances, blood magic, and the Dark Coven garner themselves with curiosity and controversy. Whether the militia has enough mettle to fend off any foreign or domestic threats remains to be seen. What is seen, however, is the newfound naval might manifested under a band of fighters taking matters into their hands. Some might call it vigilante justice, and others say it is righteous protection from threats on the shores. But if you wish to carry out and defend the land of Icemule and dabble in a bit of piracy, be sure to listen out for the Echoes of War.