A player handout from a campaign I ran...fifteen years ago? Click here for the rhyme referenced in the journal. I'm not going to post a whole lot about this, as I might reuse bits of it in another campaign. Suffice to say, the names are inspired by Glen Cook and the Taken, from the Black Company series.
Journal of Meron the Gray
K. has advysed me to keep a record -- it may be of use someday. It is not a symple thing we plan, and much can go wrong. He may die, I may die, even Anagai may die -- though it seems unlykely after so long. She has been an invaluable ayd to us.
I've found a copy of the orygynal rhyme in the lybrary of M. Duikyar, recorded by some itynerant mynstrel four or fyve centuries ago. It's clearly meant to help, though it also rayses more questions than it truely answers. We know ten were layd down, but if syx "crossed over", and only three came back, does that mean there were once thyrteen? Or did she create three more, to replace those 'unreturned'. Not to mention, where dyd they go, and what happened to those three? Thys may be the key we've been looking for.
K. has no new thoughts on the rhyme. It's three parts warning, three parts hynts & klews & ryddles, and four parts "identyfication". Of the Ten, three plotted rebellion. Two were marryed to one another. Three were syblings. And one was HER heir. But, it says not whych is whych.
Who'd have thought they'd have names so plain? Here I've been poring over tomes & codexs old enough to crumble into dust in my hands, and I find them out from a Pelkoti mynstrel, as part of an old ballad. There's more, something about a journey to the north, which awakes dysturbing thoughts of the Waste, but my Pelkoti is poor. I shall need a translator.
Damn fate, and all Pelkoti too! Kylled in a tavern brawl, drunk as the mouse in the vynter's cellar. Next summer I'll travel there, and fynd out what I can. Styll, it could be more than worth it. Syx went over, three came back? Only three names are mentioned, and a journey to the north.
R. has sent a letter. He thynks he's found several of the tombs. One is not far from Wynterdell, a second in the Wythyn, and a thyrd outsyde Gaydrylar. Spread across the wydth and breadth of the Kyngdoms. It must have been a battle royale in the end -- the survyving Fallen hunted down one by one, and "sealed in stone & earth". There is no record of the ones who dyd it, just hearsay. The last of the ilven wyzard-lords from Illenda allyed wyth the last of the Nekaryan archmages and the cream of the Ameryte arcani. You'd thynk someone would've wryt that down.
R. is dead. K. confyrmed.
Receyved package from R., sent before death. One book of two, thys one relatyng positions of Fallen tombs & traps. Could a more tymely treasure have come into my hands? Conferred wyth K. & S., both agree. Fallen are abroad,at least two, probably no more than three. Of utmost urgency that we determyne whych are awake, and whych styll sleep. I journey to Wythyn at earlyest spryng, investygate the tomb thereyn. Thence northwards, Wynterdell, Orbar, Gaydrylar. S. & assocyates investygate other restyngs. Meet wyth K. & S.
I'm being hunted. Followed. Both. Magyks uncertayn, unclear, blocked? Suspect tyme growyng very short. Dyspatched Tyuk wyth message for K. Wyll investygate Wythyn tomb.
Date uncertain. No way to tell time, cantryps only lyght. Damned fool Y, ambushed, caught, imprysoned. Captors skeletal, possyble awakened by Fallen actyvyty? Have been fed mynymal & poor foods -- they are awaytyng somethyng, or sometyme? Relygyous rytual lykely.
Last myssyve. Skeletons (ancyent pryests of Urjyn), have brought in second captive. Sharpenyng knyves, preparyng for sacryfyce. Fayrly certayn of date, holy day of Lord of Plague in a day.
Been revyewyng what I know. Names:
Six of ten. Use-names. Knowledge of truenames key. Whysper one of three survyvors of the journey. Haunt is a woman.
I had a vysyon of a shyp, a journey. Umoth-fyre rose on my wynterhand, set on my summerhand. I was met by a dwarf, and shown a great gate. Beyond the gate was a forest, and sylver icycles hung from the trees. Three corpses were hung from the trees. Theyr hearts pyerced by sylver icycles.