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Bianka's Diary

Bianka de l'Aneith

My life.

I was born on a small farm near St. Susi as the only child of my parents. I neither know my exact day of birth, nor even my true age. My father died very early and I can't really remember him. After his death my mother had to sell some of our land to get enough money to pay some of the bills left.

I grew up in poverty and had to help my mother wherever I could so we got along the next month. I didn't have much time to be a child. A few years after my father's death my mother got infected by some disease and we didn't have the money to pay a Cleric and I had no idea how to help her, so I had watch her die. Left alone and without any idea how to sell or claim our farm as mine, I grabbed what appeared valuable to me and packed it into a bag. I was only 14 (or something like this) when I left our farm and walked to St. Susi to find a way to earn some money for my living, but I had to hear again and again that I would be too young or too unqualified. Running short on the little money I had found at home I decided to try my luck somewhere else. I walked to the harbour and got a passage on the first ship that left Tortoise. It was the 'Iafrate' which brought me to Cloud Bottom Harbour. As I was completely broke now, I had to accept the first (and only) job that I was offered.

Vito employed me as waitress in his 'Jolly Roger' and I got a bed in a small chamber under the roof I had to share with one of the other girls. Her name was Juliet and she were about my age so we soon became friends. The work was hard and exhausting .. wait, clean tables and the floor and wash the dishes. As Vito had the 'Jolly Roger' open round the clock, there was always work for me and Juliet. Constantly people came in and others left, Sailors and dock workers, adventurers on their way to Silverlining, noblemen and scum.

As Vito didn't care about his customers we had to serve them all if they only paid the bill. To Vito's regular customers belonged a really ugly guy. We didn't know his name, but we soon found out, that he was dealing with illegal herbs. Vito did not seem to notice what he was dealing with or he simply ignored it.

At the end of another day with too much work and too many offenses, Juliet walked over to the dealer and bought something which she ate when we went to bed. She soon fell asleep while I rolled around several times before I finally got some hours of rest. From that day on Juliet regularly bought some of the stuff and ate it after work. One day she also offered me one of the herbs she got, but I hesitated too long and so she ate it herself. As Vito was not very generous, and we rarely got a tip, Juliet soon used up her savings and asked me for some money. I also had some coins under my pillow and I loaned her some of my savings, but she needed more and more of this drug to keep her satisfied and soon my money was also gone. She begged to get some of the drug and promised to pay later, but the dealer only shook his head and said: no money, no deal! I had to get back to work as some of the customers began to call for their orders and I didn't see what happened to Juliet, but after some time she returned to work, smiling absentmindedly, which told me that she was stoned again. She began to become lazy and I had to work harder to cover her. After a while I noticed that she disappeared from time to time with one of customers and stayed away for about half an hour. When she returned she first walked over to the dealer to get new stuff, before she provisionally returned to work. I once asked her what she was doing, but she only shrugged and said she was earning money and when I told her, that I couldn't do all the work in the pub she gave me a silver coin with a grin, ruffled my hair and said I could.

A few days later she didn't return from one of her trips to our room. When I went upstairs after work, I found her lying on her bed naked, crying into her pillow. I closed the door and walked over to her. Coming closer I noticed several bruises on her body and when I touched her she winced in pain. I asked her what happened and she confessed to me what she had been doing. When she had ended I went down to fetch Kaylee, one of the older girls, to tend Juliet. When Kaylee finished caring for Juliet's wounds, she came up with more annoying news: Juliet was pregnant!

Juliet began to cry again and Kaylee and I tried to comfort her, but without success. It was Kaylee who finally decided, that Juliet had to be kept away from the drugs and that it would be the best if she left Clouds to start a new life somewhere else. She told us that she had heard about a monastery far away in the north where Juliet might be cured and give birth to her child.

We guarded her several days, until she was able to get up again, hoping that Vito showed the usual disinterest in our work unless one of his "paying customers" complained. After a week we had enough money to pay her a passage to Padorn and I decided to use my new savings to accompany her. We said goodbye to Kaylee and I took Juliet to the harbour, where we got aboard the 'Tortoise' to Padorn.

Reaching Padorn I asked for the way to the local temple and we were shown the way by a helpful guard. I handed Juliet over to a friendly cleric who promised to take care of her and send her to the monastery as soon as one of his brothers or sisters would travel there. We said goodbye to each other and I wished her all the best, while she promised to change her life.

Totally broke again I had to look for a new job. As I knew nothing but how to carry plates and mugs of beer through crowded pubs, I walked around until I found the 'Padorn Inn', where I applied for a job.

At the same time I was talking to Arnal about a job another homeless human came to the inn, looking for adventure and fame. Before we could introduce to each other two strange looking guys entered the inn, wearing black capes and headbands. Despite their dark outlook they turned out to be friendly guys and offered their help. Jens, whom I met first, and I introduced ourselves and so did the two Satais. They were Blindfury and Few. We chatted for a moment before each of them grabbed one of us to show us around a bit. Blindfury was the one who took my hand. He took me to Shalinor where I should help somebody. I helped him (to say he helped me would be a lie ;) ) to free Rapunzel and defeat a mighty orc and the evil witch who held her captive.

Blindfury took me to the harbour then and we sailed to Razza. It was really amazing to see how big the world is and to see all those far off places I had only heard about in the stories of the drunken sailors who visited the 'Jolly Roger'. He wanted to visit the library and there we found a book which led to a new adventure. A king in a nearby kingdom was in dire need of help as he was missing a precious book.

He led me to the gate of Razza where we ran into a female elf in the company of a little, rather weak looking creature. Blindfury introduced me to her and she told me her name: Vanja. I think this was the most important meeting of my young life, but I will tell more about it later. Blindfury dragged me to a dark cave and I followed his trail of blood when he bravely fought a way through the hordes of cavetrolls until we finally found the thief of the book. I (ok, we) returned the book to the rightful owner and went on to do something good to the world.

After a few more adventures he took me back to Padorn and from the money I had earned I got a room in the Padorn Inn and a good meal. The following day I left the Padorn Inn to look for the guild Few and Blindfury had told us about: The Satais.

I found their house right around the corner of the inn and took a closer look at it. Inside a vigilant looking human greeted me with a smile and I asked him if he could tell me a bit about the guild and we started talking. I was really impressed and I liked the idea of getting strong and independent and to fight for the innocent, so I asked if I could join. It took a little while, but after the present Satais had discussed and voted they accepted me into their ranks. I was really proud when I was given my first Tschekal, headband and cape.

I went out to face the world and ran into Vanja again. She looked at me and smiled. Then she took me by the hand dragged me off the street for a little talk. She gave me lots of advice and offered me her help which I gladly accepted. I think I learned more about the world and the people from her than anybody else. She was a patient teacher and always helpful friend, my best friend in fact.

The early years were filled with training, training, training and an adventure every once in a while. Thanks to the generous sponsoring of Vanja I managed to pay for a lot more training lessons than I would have been able to afford and soon I fulfilled the requirements to be promoted. Thengel, one of Vanja's good friends and Warlord of the guild, promoted me. I traded my old Tschekal in to buy a new and better blade.

But my promotion didn't last for very long, since I was still young and inexperienced and didn't care too much about politics and the big events of the time and so I was doomed to make mistakes and fate didn't wait too long until I tripped over the first wire. To help you understand the situation I have to give a short look back on the situation back then:

Back in ancient times some hero (or was it Rokoon himself, I am not that good in mythology) had defeated Bhaal and cut of one of his claws. Bereft of his one claw, Bhaal had to retreat and the claw was kept as a precious price of battle. It fell to the clerics of Rokoon the duty to guard this powerful artifact to ensure that Bhaal won't rise to power again. Being such an powerful thing of evil, it of course drew the attention of the followers of Bhaal to the Crypt of the Padorn temple where the clerics of Rokoon had enclosed the claw in a forcefield. After many failed attempts one day members of the Guild of Assassins managed to overwhelm the cleric guards and enter the crypt, where they tainted the sacred ground, weakening the defenses to a point when one of the attackers was able to reach into the holy storm to remove the claw from its resting place. This theft caused a major uproar amongst the 'good and righteous' since it was feared that Bhaal's followers were trying to return the claw to their god, to summon him to the mortal plane and take revenge for the centuries of imprisonment. The clerics were able to perform rituals to sense the presence of the claw, but only on special days with the right circumstances and the blessing of their god.

It was a sunny day in the early spring when I was out for some exploring when I got to know that the 'claw' was sensed. The Satais mental link was exploding with chatter and commands. Also the judge, Arim the coward, was busy crying into our ears to go here and there creating more chaos. Since my friend Vanja was out there in the world with her boyfriend and knowing that he was not walking on the bright side of the street, I send her a little warning not to go to a certain area of the world and she sent me a blue stone in return ensuring me that they had not been there, nor any intention to go there anytime soon. I was very relieved that it was not Vanja's boy the big trouble was about or the mob was after. If you think that I should not speak in such derogatory terms of my guildmates and allies then you haven't lived back then and haven't seen how unorganized and horribly lead these hunts were.

The guild had a good Shogun back then, Sanul, but few of the rest of the leaders deserved their title.

Unfortunately I was still too inexperienced to know my way around most places of the world other than Padorn and Atlantis and so it happened like it always does when you are in a hurry that I lost my way somewhere near Razza. Unable to get any aid from any of my fellow guildmates I asked once more Vanja for assistance in my dire situation. To my surprise she told me not to move and that she would teleport to me (the only thing about her scary magic I always envied her for). Still wondering what was going on and why she would prefer my company over that of her beloved one, she took me by the hand and dragged me along the street and through the grasslands into some with every step thicker growing forest. Lost again I just followed her to a little clearing where she stopped and settled down on a fallen tree, telling me to sit down as well. Sitting down next to her I finally noticed her watery eyes and the shaking of her body.

I nearly fell of the tree when she told me that it was in fact her boyfriend who had been stirring up the trouble and that she needed the stone _now_ for her own purposes. Since it was hers anyway I returned the little blue gem, waiting patiently next to her and holding her hand. It was a terrible time for both of us. For her of course since she was praying for her boyfriend's safe return and well-being. I on the other hand was feeling with her and at the same time cursing and feeling the shame of not being able to follow the orders and aid my guild in its duty. More than once I was wishing there was a way to resolve this deadlock peacefully, but the clerics were screaming for blood and the Satais were eager to get it.

The chase lasted for many hours and we both cried for our special reasons, but the end came as sudden and unexpected as the beginning. It was Sanul who, with his centaur strength and the white tschekal in his hands, cut the head of the body and retrieved the claw from the corpse.

The following event is too shameful and just showing how little judgement I had back then that I will spare you from it. Since it made Sanul question my loyalty and also endangered my best friend's reputation I saw no other chance to prove my true intention and clean my name than asking for demotion. It was Thengel who did me the favor to take away the very rank he had just granted a few days before. He did not want to, but my insisting and the threat to otherwise leave the guild made him finally agree. He allowed me to keep my tschekal, but for the time of the demotion I was not allowed to use or even wield it.

The demotion was timed for two months, but I did not ask for promotion for another half year.

I know that my description of the time is drawing a rather depressing picture and shows the Satai in a very bad light, but what would you think of people walking around killing everything not able to run away fast enough and only caring about their alignment when it came to seeing Faysor. I know that not all of the Satai were like this, else I would have left only days after joining, but far too many of those bad examples existed.

Likewise the Clerics had their share of black sheep, stealing from fellow clerics, killing for profit and betraying their friends and beliefs.

[ ... to be continued ... ]

All content © 1996-2006 Nicole Wehmann