Urglaes-set pitted silver talisman
This item was a prize from the Hunt for History.
an urglaes-set pitted silver talisman
The talisman is in the rough shape of star, its beveled ridges imparting an angular look to its edges. Set within the exact center of its six points is a tiny globe crafted entirely of urglaes. The surface of the metal is slick and flawlessly smooth, unlike the numerous pits and cracks in the obviously aged silver. A thin streak of crimson slithers through the depths of the blackness of the metal, resembling a vein that simply never stops curling in upon itself.
This relic is of interest to worshippers of Marlu.
NOTE: Bard singing this song clawed her own eyes out leaving real wounds during part of it. That part is obvious in the song.
As you sing, the pitted silver talisman shivers slightly in your hands, the glints of light reflecting off its surface twinkling a dull red for the briefest moments. You get a feeling that its age nearly surpasses that of civilization itself.
You stare intently into the pitted silver talisman, trying to see the hidden depths of its accumulated knowledge while you sing. A faint haze of crimson shrouds the talisman and rises languidly from its surface like a serpent gliding through water, but it soon fades away as your verse ends.
You sing with a resonance that you're certain will draw forth the memories from the talisman, and it begins to flicker rapidly with the same dull red glow as before. It begins to rattle in your enclosed fingers, as if its memories were not for you. Despite this, you press on, the clarity and confidence in your voice waging a small war upon the talisman. Suddenly, like the strange silence before the inevitable shatter of glass, you find yourself in the depths of night... "
The air is cold, every gasping breath of frigid air burning your lungs as you lay in the darkness. The sky is a nearly unnatural shade of black, bearing no light nor color save for the dim twinkling of the stars above. The cool sheen of sweat across your body is the only sensation in the endless void, and the sound of your own heartbeat fills the uneasy silence.
Light sparks into your vision as a semi-circle of torchlight fills the surroundings, and you squint your eyes, trying to focus on the scene before you...
Abruptly, like the crack of a whip, you're thrown back into reality as the pitted silver talisman dulls and returns to normal.
Clenching the talisman tightly in your hands, you weave an intense and forceful melody, the mana of your song wrapped around it tightly like threads of taut leather. Your whole hand begins to shake as the pitted silver talisman resists your attempts, and then a sharp *CRACK* is all the warning that comes before you're plunged into the darkness yet again...
Your breath comes in short, ragged gasps, the air in front of you fogging heavily as you exhale. Though there is no sign of who lit the torches, light floods the area in uneasy waves of orange and red. The illumination is so faint that it only serves to highlight the contours of the architecture, any semblance of detail being cloaked in half-shadow. But the colossal form of an immense circle of stone monoliths towers far above you, their full height being lost in the darkness. The stones rest upon a huge circular slab of the same weathered grey stone, the small cracks upon its surface filled with trails of moss. Deep carvings cover the huge structures, but before you can commit the time to study them, you hear the sound of footsteps slowly approaching.
The harsh light of reality burns into view as you're whisked away from the vision.
As you weave your song, your familiarity with the talisman becomes apparent, as it offers you no resistance now. You slip peacefully into the vision like a dream, but as the vision reawakens in your mind, there is a breathless anticipation amid the chill air -- as if you were on the verge of being a part of something far greater than anything you have been until now.
Creeping shadows of movement flicker across the surrounding primordial monoliths, giving way to the forms of hooded figures. Each is clad in a bell-sleeved robe and holds their hands clasped together tightly, giving no clue as to who or what they may be. Striding slowly in line, each takes up a position underneath one of the huge monoliths surrounding the outdoor site, their heads bowed in silent reverence. Soon the entire area is encircled by the figures, whose nearly unnatural stillness only adds to the undeniable aura of tension now emanating over the area.
Ages seem to pass before the figure near the center stone raises its arms...
A jagged streak of crimson flashes across your sight and you hear the chilling sound of screams; thousands and thousands of screams magnified into one brief second of utter horror -- the vision comes to an abrupt end as the last echo of the cacophony fades away in your mind.
The mana summoned by your voice wraps around the pitted silver talisman precisely, and within seconds you're plunged back into cold, endless night...
Every figure now has its arms raised, their hands still hidden in the voluminous folds of their robes. They raise their voices as one into a unified chant, the deep, thrumming tones unrecognizable as any language you know of. As the sound of their chants flows through the midnight air, the chill grips you far more tightly, stabbing into your bones like daggers of frigid ice. But they continue on, incessant and unwavering in their monotonous recitations.
Without warning, the figure near the central stone steps forward and lowers its arms. Its head tilts sharply up towards the heavens, yet the concealing hood still keeps its face hidden within shadow. With a single gesture, the figure incants the words, "Oralach'lan'da at'anoi, ta Marlu vismi'ir!"
The world around you suddenly explodes in a frenzied burst of crimson as the surrounding torches flare higher than a bonfire with incarnadine flame. The other figures fall to their knees, gibbering madly in high-pitched chants as the very ground begins to shudder and buckle underneath you.
The vision snaps back into your normal surroundings, but your skin prickles very slightly as the last sounds of the gibbering fade away from your immediate memory.
Your song tentatively wraps around the pitted silver talisman, and for a moment, you briefly see a tendril of darkness lash up toward you. You feel yourself pulled forcedly you into the embrace of the talisman's memory completely.
The cacophony of gibbering voices and screaming madness envelops you like a thick, soupy liquid. Drowning among the ceaseless insanity, your eyes stare up into the star-dotted darkness above as the air swims with intense, blurry waves of bloody crimson essence. Your very mind feels thinned out and assaulted, as if what you were witnessing is simply impossible and unnatural for your own meager senses to comprehend. Nevertheless, you remain acutely aware of what occurs, awash in the sea of endless chaos that is this moment. What seem like millennia pass -- the only measure of time being the slick, rotting feeling that infects your very soul as the screams and chants blare around you.
The relentless insanity is suddenly halted as the slab beneath you shudders as if from an immense impact, followed by a sound like a stone hitting wet leather.
Your vision pulls back into reality, and you spy threads of darkness swirling across the pitted silver talisman, as if it were beckoning you to delve into its memories further.
The pitted silver talisman practically flares up with living shadow, and reaches up toward you pulling your very mind into the experience once again...
Utter silence fills the dead night -- for nothing else moves, nothing shifts save for the faint light of the stars above. Not even the sound of a breeze drifts past as you wait for the inevitable, the presence so tantalizingly close to being revealed.
Then, the sound reaches your ears -- a sloughing sound resembling a dying man flailing desperately in a vat of thick oil. The sound draws closer to you, and the central figure raises its arm and points right at you...
Hastily, you glance up to see shackles binding your wrists to an altar in the middle of the circular slab of stone and realize with a sudden horror that you are not a nonexistent observer to the vision, but a full participant. The realization comes far too late as you glance back up from the shackles to see the pulsing mass of a being which could never possibly be born of any world with a shred of purity contained within it.
You open your mouth to scream, but no sound comes out. Time itself seems to slow to a crawl as you watch, your senses so focused upon the sheer terror of the utterly alien horror before you that you cannot move, you cannot breathe, you cannot do anything but wither and die under the intensity of the creature's presence.
The blackness of the otherworldly being enshrouds you and your heartbeat completely stops... just as you feel yourself awakening into the blissful pain of the real world once again. You feel something warm on your hands, and air causes the wounds in your empty eye sockets to sting harshly.
As you slip into the familiar darkness of the pitted silver talisman's core, you hear an almost audible sigh, and you instinctively feel that this is its final memory...
You hover in the sky, thankfully manifesting in the vision as but a viewer, not the participant. Your sight shifts as you draw closer to the altar in the middle of the circular slab of stone, and you see now that the monoliths are arranged in a precise, geometric pattern as you view the site from this high vantage point.
There is no sign of the figures, and only moonlight serves to illuminate the area dimly. As you draw closer to the altar, a faint twinkle of the light catches your attention. Resting serenely upon the aged and cracked stone slab are several talismans -- simply resting there as if they had fallen from the necks of their owners. Each appears to be directly in front of the giant stone monoliths, but before you can catch anymore detail, the vision swims out of clarity, and you find yourself in reality once again.