Yeah, I've given up trying to update this on a daily basis.
BUT, you should at least know what the heck is going on.
Right now, I'm working on a community comic project called "Arkhamies." I want to get it up and running and decent looking by next week, which means no time to write.
Don't worry, I still have some back up for the Mumewin Letters and all 10 of you readers will get to catch up on his adventures, but it can wait.
See ya' soon.
Thursday, May 24, 2012
Monday, May 21, 2012
15th of Second Spring, 2,001 (AZD)
Friends at the Library of Annalow,
This morning, I got a good look at the village and structure of buildings the Effees call home and found myself interested not so much in the structures, which would be interesting enough to any architect, but the material they use. The Effee's here seems to have a reliance on Iron Grass, that rarely seen bamboo. I never knew it grew down here at the Breathless grasslands even though I must have seen forests of it when traveling from the fall of the Silver River as I believe before harvest, it looks exactly like any other form of Bamboo.
Incredible. The homes of this tribe form sturdy domed buildings consisting half of the Iron Grass and half of long vines. You must understand, my friends, there are no trees in this land. The animals take refuge atop hill tops that rise out of the wetness spread apart quite sparsely, so it's easy enough to find the wild life during the night, if you're willing to brave it. One hill top may hold all the grey panthers who hold a wet season truce with, perhaps, a small heard of elephants. The Spingbok and Gemsbok halt their nomadic ways and pull together in family home hills during the rain.
I must return here during the dry season to see how the animals interact then, but before that I should attempt to inquire about the Iron grass. I've still no clue where I could go to find some. I've seen huge forests of Bamboo here, but can't tell the difference between regular and Iron.
Speaking of observations. Later in the day, I've attracted a small audience of kits, that is, child effees. While wringing my vest dry, I caught site of their ears sticking out of the grass fields at the corner of my vision. I couldn't say what stories they've been told of the "devils of Annalow."
I did my best to feign ignorance and finished packing some supplies before one of my exploratory walks. Myself busied with preparations, I saw a set of white ears get closer and cautiously closer, no doubt dared by the others. When close enough, I dropped down into the grass and slid to the other side of my tent. There, I waited until I heard the kit draw close. Out I jumped with a mighty "BOO!" and chuckled as the child ran away yelling back to his friends.
It's good to know that no matter where I wander, children are pretty much the same.
Professor Steven Mumewin
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
14th of Second Spring, 2,001 (AZD)
To my colleagues at the Library of Annalow,
Our plan is set, now that we're in Breathless. The grasslands here are beautiful and must be, somehow, linked to the golden soft wheat I've heard of from the north. Spring here is a wet season, and rain comes and goes all day long painting green on the fields. The image of it blowing in the wind along hills and valleys reminded Chumkin and the others of the sea flowing on a clear day. It is not clear, however, but the overcast skies give way to merciful rain to help cool us off. Watching Junior flap and fish happily in the shallows has uplifted us from the heavy atmosphere of the Effee Forest.
Unconsciously, I believe we've wandered south again, away from the woods. Only today at sunset have we stumbled onto an Effee Village of Bamboo and grass. To my surprise, they held no ill for Chumkin and the others, remarking that they look like traders (Do sailor's regularly trade here?), but my more civilized attire made them uneasy. It's never smooth speaking as an Annalow native to Wild Effee. Unwilling to be the stigma against my friends, I excused myself from the group and returned to the grasslands.
It was just as well, because another creature caught my eye along the way to the village. A creature I've hear of called the Breathless Skringbok and the Breathless Gemsbok, so named because of their location. In this grassland, they are quite prolific as their only predator here are the large panthers scattered sparsely in the country, as well as any anaviated who hunt in these lands. Seems even the Effee tribes who live here are vegetarians, like their Annalow brethren, show want for spingbok hide or meat. Perhaps the horns as well for carving. The Springboks, specifically, interest me in this area. I've been told that unlike other animals, they dance, literally dance, during the sunset.
I've camped a good distance away on a hilltop with the village in site and have just been joined by Chumkin who was kind enough to bring me some food and rations traded from the village. I'll leave the letter for Junior to deliver until the morning. With hope, we can get better directions to Alexture and some how back on course.
Professor Steven Mumewin
Monday, May 14, 2012
12th of 2nd Spring 2,001 (AZD)
To my esteemed friends at the Library of Annalow,
Thank you for your return letters of encouragement. With the help of Chumkin, who is fast becoming a good friend, I have recovered some from my ordeals in the Effee Forest.
We've travels too far south along the river. A few days travel, and I've discovered that Silver River splits at least twice before reaching a gorgeous round lake at the base of a cliff and water fall. The trees are thick, but friendly here, with bright greens and white of flower and leaf. The Wild life is alive and moving along all parts of the forest, floor and branch. It's as if the Tree Goddess, Yggdrasil, is apologizing for the wolves behind us.
Here, we camped at the blessed opening into a huge grassland. With Chumkin's help, we seemed to have pinpointed out location about a hand of days off course. We're off our maps, now. One of the mume's suggested that far enough west will take us back to the gold ocean, and north or south, either way along the shore should grant us a port town to gather our barrings again. Personally, I'm of the belief that if we ask Junior to guide us, the Ibis would take us to any city in the world.
Of Junior; While I've been resting, he's founded a nest on my head. I'm not sure if this is endearing or if he simply seeks a warm place to roost at night, but I'll take what companionship I can get. My dreams are not pleasant places and I appreciate waking to a friend perched on me at night.
The number of eyes in the forest have thinned to almost none, but I still feel like there is one or two wolves that watch for me. Once we get out into the fields of Breathless, the grasslands south of the forest, I'll feel a lot better. The Effees down here have less love for wolf-kin than for Mandra-kin.
Professor Steven Mumewin
Sunday, May 13, 2012
As I write this last page, Chumkin and two others, a mume and a borc, have hauled me like a sack of wheat onto the raft and we make way South until the forest gives way. The other mume who came with us fled in fear at the site of Davite. It is divine intervention that the other three in my crew show such loyalty and in the state of fatigue I'm in now, I make no complaint. We have all vowed never again to return to this forest. I argue no sentient thing should again enter unless charged with the eradication of those evil creatures.
The mumes and borcs of Elexia must be made of stronger stock than us city people. Davite's body buried by the locals and ourselves proved to them just another soul lost to the woods. A mere hazard of living in the forest.
As for my research, I regard the Dread Wolves as the most evil beings on the planet. They are the only creatures I have ever heard of that kill other than for food. From what I saw of Davites body, death was only a symptom of his horrible wounds as no bite on his body had been meant to eat or feed. They kept him alive on that altar to hurt for the mysterious moon god they worshiped in that clearing.
Tho individually, the wolves are not more powerful than any other dog, their intelligence and cruelty make them terrible foes and their community is strong. Although more study would be necessary to discover things such as their social structure, I see no purpose behind further investigation beyond finding more efficient ways to destroy the species.
Our original plan has been detoured. We once wished to follow the road out of Elexia to the west, but instead we could not endure the woods again and only find rest on the river. I don't know how far south this takes us, having no maps of this area. The security will be worth the inconvenience.
Professor Steven Mumewin
Saturday, May 12, 2012
I could not describe exactly what happened next. A sharp bark later and what felt like hundreds of rabid dark beasts seemed to violently climb the trees with mouth and claw. Like a rolling wave, they pulled on each other, growling and gurgling on foamy spit. Davite and I must have jumped from tree and tree fueled by sweat and fear of the unnaturally quite rumbling behinds us. Unlike every other kind of wolf I've ever heard of or seen, the damned dogs did not bark. They only snarled and panted, pulling themselves closer and faster than the death of light. A wall of black pounding out of the ocean waves. A wall of primal evil.
For a while, there was nothing but white in my mind. The dedication to running for my life was more than the pain of the acid that must have been pumping through my veins. In place of blood, there was only screams under my skin. "RUN! RUN! RUN!"
The bane-weed never left it's sack. There was no time.
It was the cold water of the Silver River that shocked me to my senses. The chill snapped the noise out of my mind in am icy sensation of weightlessness. I quickly realized I must have jumped to the safety of the river, but had no memory of doing so. When I surfaces, I turned to see my pursuers. A blessing from all celestial beings granted that the wolves, piling up at the edge of the river, could not stand to enter it, not even to pursue one who had blasphemed their sacred site with his presence. Davite was no where.
What followed was a strange and unnerving game of Predator/Prey. I could not swim better than to pull myself onto the opposite shore, but somehow the Dread wolves also found themselves to the other side of the river, possibly crossing the canopy above in a single-minded and hateful hunt. Always, I kept to the shores, my supplies lost to the river bed below. When the wolves grew too close, I jumped into the water and tread toward the middle, until they backed off, unsure of how to reach me.
Once or twice, the wolves would work together, holding a long branch at both ends, one wolf to anchor on shore and the other to try and reach me at the middle. This never worked, because even when close, the beast could not do more than claw me, unwilling to loose the branch.
The sun rose like the Goddess of the East, forcing the angry wolves to shy away back into the thick and demonic grove. I found myself at my limit of exhaustion and pain. With nothing left inside me, I finally collapsed on the bridge to Elexia and through fevered dreams, I barely felt the pull and care of Chumkin and the farm girl who sold me the bane-weed. I slept for a day and a night.
Still without energy, the next morning, they found what had once been Davite dragged to the edge of the woods. His fate the same as that bird sacrifice. A message from the Dread Wolves.
Dread Wolves (Creature)
Fit: 0 Awr: 1 Crv: -1 Res: 1 Luk: 2 Dis: 4
Brawling(Proficient), Investigate(Novice), Tactics(Proficient)
Claw(2 fatigue Damage), Bite(1 injury Damage)
Friday, May 11, 2012
The full moon lit the higher parts of the clearing when Davite and I awoke to snapping and gathering noises below. The floor of the forest was alive with shifting animal darkness. It was the blue black fur of the Dread Wolves I recognized from earlier on our raft. We said nothing and kept the sack at hand which held our bane-weed wrapped clubs. I squinted and search for any anaviation, perhaps even one not of the nine known races that populated Mash'ta, but all I saw were wolves.
And how many wolves? We could not count. It was they who gripped branches from the trees and snapped them off, clearing the the circle and ensuring the light from above the canopy to reach that blackened and rusted stone at the center below. Behind them, somewhere in the woods, was the pained scratching of a bird I could not identify.
No fire nor lamp gave light and nothing brighter than the ground or the pelts of wolf would indicate the presence of those who seemed to train the dogs that catered to the clearing. I began to realize it was the wolves themselves that kept the place in it's eldritch savage order and must be to the wolves that worshiped there, if you can imagine.
As I thought this, the center of the clearing widened, the beasts making way for some ritual, and all turning to face the stone in the middle. The rusted stone almost glittered under bright moon light. The screeching grew louder and louder as the wolves parted and formed a path as one edge. Walking the new path was a wolf holding an injured fowl securely in its mouth. The creature placed the poor damaged bird hard on the stone as another wolf came close, gently put it's muzzle close to sniff, and suddenly ripped one of the wings off the still living victim. Another wolf came from the other side and repeated. And another for one of the victim's legs. And another for it's final leg.
And the thing on the stone that once was a bird, was left to flail and screech and cry and beg as the full moon looked down above the hole in the sky. A shining eye on the horror show below. The bird bled on the rusty stone and all noses of the wolves shot up giving a loud, synchronized, horrifying howl!
The greatest horror, my friends, was from the center wolf, the one who brought the bird, and who had a scar from his left eye tearing back to the side of his face to his mutilated ear. That scared eye fixed itself in mid howl directly on me and my companion.
Thursday, May 10, 2012
During our second day, we happened upon a strange opening in the woods. It had the air of a savage and bizarre altar of worship with the branches and canopy above opened artificially, creating a clearing below of a tribal nature. Davite and I exchanged glances, admitting our inexperience to such a sight.
I have heard of such savage nations beyond the gold ocean who practice horrible and primal rituals of cannibalism and decadent blood shed, but even in the north-lands, civilization guarded well against such a practice and never would I have imagined such a sight as this so close to the sacred city of Annalow.
As we inspected the place, we wondered what tribe of peoples could live there. Perhaps one befriending the wolves? I wondered if I could communicate, to understand why they broke and tore the branches of the trees to make this clearing, or what the significance was of the rusted stone at the center of the circle meant. Was that blood? The clearing was not wide at all, maybe 20 feet, but it reach up and out of the woods, feeling more like we looked up from the bottom of a well.
We decided, with the quiet of the woods, and the smaller number of shadows at the edge of our sight, that Davite and I would rest in the trees above. Whatever happened here, the tribe or gathering that made this place would return and we hoped we could talk. We would need our rest anyway and so found a secluded set of branched high above the clearing to sleep.
There was communication, Lady knows I wish it weren't so. But the message ensured that it would be the last restful sleep I would ever have.
Wednesday, May 9, 2012
On the whole, during the sunlit hours in the thiner part of the woods, we saw nothing more than flashing shadows at the corner of our eyes. In fact, I'm quite certain the wolves fear the light, as if under some blessedly misguided superstition. At the edge, it was safe. At the edge, it was pleasant. And I worried, still, fore I couldn't help but notice that no wild life anywhere we could see ever touched the ground.
Before entering the deeper and thicker enclosures, Davite stopped and pulled out a vile of some fowl and musky flavored perfume and applied it strategically around his person before handing me the liquid and biding I do the same. "All wolves have good noses." he said. Coming from the north-lands where the noble snow wolf and his son the White Hounds, I took Davite at his word and repeated his ritual. Then, as if entering the gates of darkness, we snuck under the shadowyer canopy.
The change was not subtle between the thick and thin woods. There was no chirping, no signs of happy or busy creatures, and the trees became so thick that the roots all but impeded our progress. Before long, Davite and myself were slowly ascending and climbing through heavy branches 10 feet off the ground, careful not to make a noise. We were careful because there seemed to be more shades moving, all of them with eyes.
Our first night in the woods was a lesson in psychology. We climbed up the woods as high as the claustrophobic trees would allow before finding branched sturdy enough to ease worry of falling so as we could rest. To be honest, neither of us slept well, as the devil dogs below would howl at the nearly full moon beyond the canopy. During my own watch, I swear I heard the woods just beyond my vision snap and crick below, as if the creatures were searching for a way up here. There were low growls and barks in all directions below.
At dawn I seemed to glean the plan of the wolves. At first, I thought it was paranoia brought on by the lack of rest, but now I realize my instincts were correct. The wolves knew where we were, and took shifts to keep us awake and in a state of unrest.
Tuesday, May 8, 2012
My apologies for 2 weeks of no updates. Let me explain a little.
My computer crashed and crashed hard. When it crashed, I crashed with it, like someone with Computer-Withdraw and had horrible thoughts like: "Without my computer, I am nothing." Once I realized how silly that was to say to myself, I began to realize, maybe this was an addict's kind of thinking. After talking about it with my friend, Chuck, we came up with the question "When does the tool (The computer) become the escape?"
That's a very good question. This device I'm typing on is only a tool, so why am I losing my mind over it? If a car broke down, yeah it would slow me down considerably, but I wouldn't be spilling too many tears. I would fix it. Right?
So, I took a two week break to reflect and try and calm down. I drew, I sketched, I used only pen and paper and such and so on. I mostly read. I DID cheat in a few ways, but nothing that I would have called devastating. Queeny's laptop was used for checking my forum and reading 1 man's blog. (CRPGAddict'sblog). I watched some Netflix on the Wii and played some games on the PS2. All in all, I did discover a few things about myself. Things I totally need to work on.
I don't have a computer addiction. I have a distraction addiction. (Blame it on my A.D.D., baby.) Perhaps what I need, then, is a way to focus that distraction, because I absolutely resist taking any drugs that should "help focus." It's not a complete distrust of drugs or doctors (though there is that, too), rather a feeling that taking any narcotics takes something away from me. I also discovered just how fat I am (356 Lbs. That's a new record for me). And, of course, I still have a problem with consistency.
Blah blah, I will watch fewer Let's Plays, play fewer games, focus more, lose weight, blah blah.
Here's the real underlining problem, eh? Any promise I make to myself
At least, it feels that way. My appetite outweighs my reason and contemplation. Minecraft awaits me and I answer it's calling like a junkie with no regard toward the lost work and (worse) lose time. That's the real problem, man. I can't keep my word to myself. It's not just procrastination, it's a deep distrust of myself and my plans.
I'm not going to spend much time on this computer, right now. I still have tests to run to make sure it's working properly, and I plan to uninstall the Sims. So, I'll get right on that. Fortunately, I have a back-log of Heart Mage posts to make, so tomorrow, come hell or high water, I will continue the Mumewin Letters.
Wish me luck. I'll need it.
(P.s. I have done quite a bit of work on the magic system of the RPG. Heart Magic is finished. Only 4 more magics to go before I have a usable game)