[Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

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RobJN
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[Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by RobJN » Mon Jun 20, 2011 10:17 pm

Wanderers. Drifters. Vagabonds. The Lost. Accursed of Zirchev. More than likely, the traveler in Karameikos will hear one of these names before any will utter another: Darine. Kaldresh. Marikesh. They call themselves "the Dom," which simply means "the people."

History tells us that several tribes of the descendants of Traldar fled west, before the terrible the onslaught of the invading Beastman, leaving farmstead and family to burn. For this, the history books tell us, they were cursed by the Immortals, never again to have home, hearth, or fields of their own to tend. Should they attempt to settle, misfortune would find them, and that which they might build be consumed: their houses would fall to ruin, their families stricken with disease, crops to wither and rot in their fields.

And yet, despite the curse, any night's camp is a place of good cheer, alive with music and song and dancing; the fireside is a place for tales adventuresome, or romantic, or fantastic. No caravan is without a few of the garishly painted vardos, for it is said to be bad luck to refuse a Darine's invitation for company on the road. Cursed though they may be should they try to settle down, their presence on the roads is more often than not a blessing.


I remember devouring the information on Ravenloft's Vistani culture back when that setting came out, and was pleasantly surprised to see much of that material given a Known World spin in the writeup from the MML. There are some pieces that don't quite fit Thorn's Mystara, others that I feel need a bit more filing to get the last of the serial numbers off. ;)

Immortal curses are good, and of course, are even better when mortals only understand part of the reasoning behind it. They are made even better when mortals completely misunderstand the reasoning behind them. :twisted:

As I tinkered with my notes, I was struck by that 400 year gap between the Darine's leaving the lands of Traldar and returning to Traladara. Why would anybody wander for 400 years through mostly hostile territories? Where all did they go?

What if they weren't merely wandering, but were being pursued? And what if they weren't simply wandering, but had a very specific purpose? A line popped into my head as I noodled with my notes: "Ah, to wander implies no destination, no purpose. The Darine, for all their traveling, have never wandered."
Rob
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by RobJN » Wed Jun 22, 2011 10:22 pm

The Darine are said to venerate Zirchev.

If the Darine are looked upon with a mix of suspicion and wonder, how would this fit in with their connection to their Immortal patron?

Suspicion, wonder, distrust, disregard for laws not entirely of their own making. A gift for fortune telling (whether it be true gazing into the future or just showmanship)... Wait a minute, isn't one of the powers of the Eye of Traldar (the so-called Black Opal Eye)... foretelling the future? :)

Hmmmm :twisted:

What if Zirchev didn't "find" the Eyes of Traldar, or they weren't "given" to him. What if his magical power came from the stones? And what if he stole them (mistakenly or on purpose), in fleeing those oppressive Hutaakan masters from the Lost Valley? If we go along with this supposition, it's not implausible that the Hutaakans could have sent the gnolls into the lands of the Traldar, either in retaliation or simply in order to recover the artifacts.

Hmm. Hero of the Beastman invasion and wars to the cause of it all?

Worked into the very much work-in-progress mythology of Thorn's Mystara, Zirchev's use of magic would have put him at risk of madness at the hands (claws?) of the demonic taint upon Mystara's native magic, and it is entirely possible that he was deep in the clutches of madness by the end of the 40 years of war against the Beastmen. If he wasn't mad, then could the stones have acted as a buffer, much like the elven Soul Gems? Or perhaps the key to Traldar's artifacts lay in the fact that they were crudely-built demonic prisons?

Then again, it's entirely possible that Traldar's mystical Eyes were not opals at all, but another type of stone familiar to readers of Thorn's Chronicle.....

Also, in reading through material about Zirchev from Marco's awesome compilation of Immortals, I was struck by many of the similarities between Zirchev and the Wizard of the Woods from Dave Arneson's Blackmoor. Learned of magic, friend to the sylvan folk, if not commanding them, then on good enough terms that they would do his bidding in helping fight against the gnoll invaders.

History repeating itself?

If the Darine do indeed follow Zirchev, I'm thinking they would have some sort of connection (power over?) the fey. And who do we know who might have a connection to the fey as well...?
Rob
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by yellowdingo » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:47 pm

You make it sound like the Hutakaan were a Shadow Government (or Agency) functioning in the fringes of Nithia which they wrecked because it was wreckable just to teach the Traladar a lesson.

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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by RobJN » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:53 pm

yellowdingo wrote:You make it sound like the Hutakaan were a Shadow Government (or Agency) functioning in the fringes of Nithia which they wrecked because it was wreckable just to teach the Traladar a lesson.
Nithia didn't fall... it was pushed! ;)
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by RobJN » Sun Dec 30, 2012 10:14 pm

The Darine tribe were originally from what would become western Karameikos: the Achelos woods bear the name of one of their ancient kings, though nearly every other trace of the tribe has been lost or forgotten in the thousand years since their exile. The tribe consists of several different clans, the largest of which is the Kaledresh. These are the "typical" Darine most think of when the tribe's name is mentioned: they travel in wildly colorful vardos, homes on wheels, strung with chimes and pots and pans. These are the rovers, the most widely traveled of the clans. Their talent lies in mending and tinkering; it is said that the item touched by Kaledreshi hands is returned in a condition better than when it was brand new.

The Marikesh is the second largest clan, their vardos more sedate in color. They do not range as far and wide as their Kaledreshi cousins, mainly due to the fact that they keep small herds of goats, sheep, pigs, and various types of fowl. The highest born families of the Marikesh keep and breed horses, and aside from elven whites, it is said there are no finer horses to be had than one given by a Marikesh.

The smallest of the clans is the Lovani, but these are said to be the First clan: Achelos and Zirchev were both of the Lovani, and were possessed of great wisdom and foresight. The Lovani clan not only tends to produce the wisest and most powerful of seers and sages, but also the finest huntsmen and makers of cloth and leather goods.

Kaledreshi who take up Zirchev's debt are granted power over roads and means of travel. Those of the Marikesh gain an affinity and attenuation for animals and the wild. The Lovani become seers, able to see over great distances, at times to even pierce the veil between past and future.

Darine class add-on material coming soon!

This material is being developed concurrently with the First Quest segment of Thorn's Chronicle of the Saga of the Last Daughter of the Lost Kingdom
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by Yaztromo » Wed Jan 02, 2013 10:52 am

A real world Indian (from Indian sub-continent) wandering tribe (somehow similar to the flavour of the people you're describing) is master at tin smithing... it may be useful for you, if you want to to draft another tribe...
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by RobJN » Wed Jan 02, 2013 1:17 pm

Yaztromo wrote:A real world Indian (from Indian sub-continent) wandering tribe (somehow similar to the flavour of the people you're describing) is master at tin smithing... it may be useful for you, if you want to to draft another tribe...
I may fold that little tidbit into the Kaledresh
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by RobJN » Fri Sep 18, 2015 2:57 pm

Zirchev's Oath

Zirchev’s Oath sealed his pact with the Troll Queen, and bound the three tribes of Traldar from the city state of Achelos to carry on his debt, passing from eldest to youngest within the various clan and family lines since the middling days of the Beast Man invasion.

The Troll Queen is not without mercy, and knowing that not every descendent would be fit for the tasks required of the Pact, left exclusions and exemptions. There is no prejudice in the families between those who have taken up the Pact and those who have not.

Every three years, when a given clan’s travels take it within Petra’s Kingdom of Krakatos, the families make a pilgrimage to Zirchev’s Grove, in a solemn parade in which the entire clan, regardless of age, is present, dressed in their most threadbare of clothes, bereft of adornment and coinage, save two copper kopecs each, one of which they must give away to an onlooker or passer-by. (It should be noted that the stories, legends, and tales told of the significance of those two kopecs varies from clan to clan, tribe to tribe, and even among the Traladaran communities surrounding Krakatos and Zirchev’s Grove. These will hopefully be explored in future installments)

Those “of age” choose whether or not they will take up the blood debt, in either a ceremony of transference, where it is passed from one of greying-age to the younger (either directly blood related, or ‘adoptive,’ if the candidate has no grandparent, or if a grandparent has no descendant) or the pact initiation ceremony, for the first in a family to take up the debt.
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by Sturm » Fri Sep 18, 2015 3:48 pm

Very interesting.
Do you have more info on the Troll Queen and her connection to the Darine? Is she the same that ruled Grondheim? I cannot find more reference at the moment on your blog or The Piazza.
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by RobJN » Fri Sep 18, 2015 4:12 pm

Sturm wrote:Very interesting.
Do you have more info on the Troll Queen and her connection to the Darine? Is she the same that ruled Grondheim? I cannot find more reference at the moment on your blog or The Piazza.
The very same. :twisted:

This is my definitive development thread for the Darine, so anything that goes live on the blog will either be mirrored here, or will have a link out to it.

What little I have on the Troll Queen and Grondheim is still in my personal notes and reference material (which I'm bouncing back and forth with Chimpman), which hasn't made it into the blog just yet. But I expect things to start trickling out, with a major writeup on the Troll Queen in time for Halloween here in the States ;)
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by Chimpman » Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:14 am

Hey ;) I was just thinking of pinging you on the subject when I stumbled across this thread. My interest is definitely piqued.

What oath did Zirchev take, and what debt does it cover?

I know... tune in next time to find out :evil: :mrgreen:
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by RobJN » Tue Sep 22, 2015 4:20 am

Chimpman wrote:Hey ;) I was just thinking of pinging you on the subject when I stumbled across this thread. My interest is definitely piqued.

What oath did Zirchev take, and what debt does it cover?

I know... tune in next time to find out :evil: :mrgreen:
:twisted: I was hoping you'd stumble this way eventually.

Crazy work week(s) are crazy, and I'm also dealing with some vehicular drama, so the writing time is rather shorter than I would like this week. The good news is I'm on vacation next week and the honey-do list is only a mile long.

I was hoping we'd be able to get back in touch about Some Things Troll Queenish, to see if you had any general thoughts to throw in before I nailed too much down on my own. I seem to remember a Google doc floating around with some collaboration on it, and would be interested to see if you've had any ideas these past few months. Timelines. I'm bad enough with dates when they run forwards.... :oops:
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Re: [Thorn's Chronicle Crunch]: Traldar's Lost Tribe

Post by Chimpman » Tue Sep 22, 2015 5:54 am

Yeah, I popped the doc open and refreshed my memory - there were a few tidbits that I hadn't read yet. Anyway, with this issue of Threshold now come to a close I have a little bit more time on my hands ;)

Let's see if I can put myself back in BC 2300 and spitball a few ideas.
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