This is the autobiographical journal of Arvil Bren, a somewhat reluctant hero who has been placed on an unknown quest by powers that he barely knows exist. Follow his journey as it is updated daily, Monday through Friday, and enjoy! These are the most recent entries in Arvil Bren's third journal; Politics of the Redoran. His first journal can be found in its entirety here. His second journal, Trail of the Archmage can be found here.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

39: Cult of the Nerevarine

The Ashlanders all believe in the legend of Nerevar's reincarnation and return, but some believe more than others. The strongest core of belief is the Nerevarine Cult, focused here among the Urshilaku. When I made my way into the camp wearing the glowing ring Moon and Star it was immediately recognized. Here they were not just expecting the Nerevarine someday, they were waiting for me to return from the Cavern of the Incarnate. Perplexed that a Breton would even be going to the cavern, but still hoping beyond hope that Azura would send them the hero they are counting on to defeat Dagoth Ur. As the hunters returned one by one the excitement grew into a wild celebration.

Sul-Matuul and Nibani were more sober. "Azura has spoken. I am to be your guide, Nerevarine, said the wise woman of the clan. "You are the Nerevarine, but the trials are far from completed. You must be called Nerevarine not just by the hunters of our clan, but by the Ashkahns of the four clans. In this I can offer you knowledge of their camp sites and their ways. Hopefully the Moon and Star will convince them."

"I am satisfied Nibani," said Sul-Matuul. "I would declare him Nerevarine tonight. However, by your leave Nerevarine I would prefer to wait. The rumor will spread among the hunters as it is, but if I speak that will add fuel to the blaze. Being the Nerevarine of the clans will not help with the great houses. The more you are known as the Nerevarine the harder it will be to approach the trial of the Hortator. The Tribunal Temple will be against you, and those of the house people who listen most strongly to the temple will be your enemies, even those who were your friends."

The words of the ghost of Peakstar came back to me. Her spirit had stood in the cavern as the most recent failed incarnate and said that it was the ways of the great houses that had defied her understanding, and the trial of the Hortator had been her undoing. Sul-Matuul's counsel was true, and I appreciated his wisdom. "How should I approach the house people?" I asked my advisors.

"The ways of the house people are strange to me," said Nibani. "All I can offer is that I will seek Azura's guidance. Sul-Matuul's words make sense to me though."

Sul-Matuul looked pensive. "The house Dunmer are strange to us all. We must seek the guidance of Azura, but we must also help ourselves as best we can." With that he excused himself and left the tent briefly, returning with his Gulakhan Zabamund and the clan's trader Kurapli. "Of our clan Kurapli has the most experience of the house people, and Zabamund's words are always in my ear." I accepted their congratulations and their professions of loyalty, and we laid out the challenges ahead.

"There is no question that the trial of the Hortator must come first," Zabamund agreed. "Declaring you the Nerevarine would have the Ordinators on your neck immediately, and they would likely attack our camp as well. You must have the support of the house people to hold them in check. The Velothi know the legend, they know you must be both Nerevarine and Hortator. They will not be troubled that you are Hortator the way the Great Houses will reject the Nerevarine."

"So how do I approach the house Dunmer?"

"Start with the Redorans," Kurapli suggested. "They are warriors, they will be honorable in their dealings."

"They are also the greatest supporters of the temple in Vvardenfell though," Sul-Matuul added.

"Good reason to get to them first," said Zabamund. Sul-Matuul looked at his lieutenant with some surprise, but then he nodded.

I looked back and forth between them. "Okay. Explain please."

"When you start this task the temple will be try to stop you. If the Redorans have not declared you Hortator they will be added to the resistance of the Ordinators. The Hlaalu may not answer their call, and the Telvanni certainly won't," Sul-Matuul said.

"Okay. The Redorans first then. They have a council. I can't just walk into a council meeting and tell them I am the Hortator. What do I do?"

"On any council there are leaders," said Sul-Matuul. "First you must know who those leaders are."

"Much more importantly that will tell you who are not the leaders," said Kurapli. "The leaders have power. They will be the least interested in a change. Any who are not happy with the leaders will be the best to approach."

"Once you have a friend on the council you will be able to proceed," Zabamund concluded.

"So that is the plan," I said. "There's another advantage to approaching the Redorans first. I think their councilors are all in Ald-ruhn."

"That seems to be the plan Nerevarine," said Sul-Matuul, "but I suggest you wait until Nibani has consulted Azura."

"Of course," I said. "In the meantime I need to lay low. Rumors are going to spread."

"Kurapli, this is an opportunity you should not pass," Zabamund told her. "Even though he is now the Nerevarine, Arvil Bren is still our clanfriend. I know he will stand for the honor of our clan, and yours as well."

"Ah," said Sul-Matuul, "and that would get him out of the camp, which will make it easier to quiet the rumors."

"What?" I asked. "What is the problem Kurapli? I will help if I can."

Tears glistened in her eyes, something I did not expect from an Ashlander. "My husband was slain clanfriend."

"By who?"

"Renegades. Outcasts. They came to trade, and the Urshilaku gave our hospitality. In return they stole from us. My husband challenged them, and they made as if to return what they had stolen, but then Zallay Subaddamael surprised him. The thieves fled as he died in my arms. They have no honor."

"Outcasts. Where would I find them?"

"They have a camp at Aharasaplit, in Sheogorad," said Zabamund. "It is remote, and the Ordinators will not hear of you from there."

"My husband said that whoever avenges him is to get his spirit spear. It may serve well in your trials."

"I would have many nights to dream the dreams Nerevarine, " said Nibani. "Azura will reveal whatever she must reveal."

I don't know if I am motivated by the clan's honor, the convenience of a distraction, or my own outrage; but Subaddamael will have to go further than Sheogorad to escape vengeance.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this !
- Angela

2:04 PM  
Anonymous mikekearn said...

I love the ending to this one, on the brink of a quest to avenge a fellow clan member and friend. Totally awesome.

3:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you are just beyond any derogatory remarks for homosexuality that I can muster at this point

7:50 AM  

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