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Found 9 results

  1. Magnus had mixed feelings about this area. They were certainly more free with displays of violence, which meant he could blow off some steam here, it was also very cold and he had had enough of being uncomfortably cold in his life. Still, the exercise was keeping him warm enough, and his position made procuring a warm fur coat all too easy. For the moment he was awaiting his next fight, the unicorn watching the show to see who the best fighters were. If he could get them on his side, he could make good use of them in the future. Currently, it was a bit of a one-sided match as a cocky, spear-wielding earth pony was mopping the floor with his opponent. How that pony wasn’t freezing in nothing but pants he may never know, but he seemed to have found a good candidate already if that attitude didn’t drive him crazy. Magnus sighed softly to himself from a seat in the stands, coat wrapped around him and sword hidden within, watching the proceedings with an outward appearance of mostly apathy. Most of these competitors were not that impressive, honestly.
  2. Hooves stomping to the drummer's beat, horns blaring and crowds screaming as steels clashed. The arenas of Saarvagerg were busy as ever as a larger crowd gathered around one of the smaller public arenas. It was a open arena, no real guidelines given. Just a free for all brawl zone to sort out troubles. That was until one cow arrived. For the past two hours she carved a path around the arena taking on everything in it with utter disregard for how many rushed her and yet she came out on top using nothing more than her hooves. The cheering was reaching deafening levels as she bucked a bull so hard he shot over the arena wall. All around her the deaten, many out cold or rolling in pain on the muddy floor. The cow was shorter than most caribou yet her strength bested many bulls bigger than her. Her frame mached her strength with clear muscle mass underneath her hide and fur that was ashy white. She had a black mane done up in a mohawk with purple highlights. Her eyes were a crisp ice blue with a long jagged scar over her right eye that looked like lighting built. She was wearing black platemail covered her more vital organs but left the rest wide open to cut down on weight in a “all or nothing” take on self defense. Her weapons were nothing more than her four hooves reinforced with some black steel to be used in blocking blows. Standing on top of a whimpering bull twice her size the cow looks up at the onlookers, grinning ear to ear. She was not even panting yet. Yet she did not speak. Not one word left her muzzle in all of the combat. She waves a hoof at the onlookers, than aimed it at her self, dearing more to come down and take her on as they chanted the name given to her by onlookers. Silent Lightning, given thanks to her face scar and utter lack of speaking. But this was no cow. She was tempest. Thanks to the magic of Masquerade and his one of a kind disguises she looked complenty like a caribou even up close. The custom outfit cost so much she had to lone Bits from Ice just to pay for it! AND was going to need to do some… ‘work’ for Masquerade on top of it. But it was all worth it. The magic and skill in its making masked her flawlessly. She was for all it was worth a full blooded caribou when inside of it. But one thing it can’t mask was her accent and lack luster understanding of the caribou language. Well she had what she needed too get by and understand most things speaking it was another story. So to cover her flank she pretend to be mute and let her acts speak for her. ((This RP contants tempest in a magic disguse bult by Masquerade, as such she looks like a female caribou. If you don't know about Masquerade or his costumes read his app! it's vary usefull. The only thing that knows tempest is here or owns that costume is Ice her self.))
  3. By the time all the invitations were sent out, the event was no longer very much of a surprise. It was no secret that Chieftain Sigrun of Clan Askr and Vakstyra Halvard of Clan Breen had hit it off very well ever since their first meeting in the Saarvergerg Arena, and fast became more than friends. The fact that their homeland was split by a civil war, however, intruded inevitable delays on anything official. Not to mention the somewhat complicated politics involving Clan Breen’s public neutrality in the matter of the war, while Sigrun and Clan Askr were very much on the side of the Loyalists. Many tedious months of politics later, however, and Halvard had finally managed to shift his Clan’s position, and considerable resources, behind the King’s cause. As these were not inconsiderable in amount, the ceremony itself would be made a fairly extravagant affair, the marriage of the two now seen as a symbol and lynchpin of their clan’s alliance. Which meant, of course, that their wedding was now further delayed by the amount of planning that had to go into it… *Good thing I’ve never been one to shy away from logistics.* Halvard mused, smiling as he completed the last double-check of the mead supply. Sigrun wasn’t one for fancy and frou-frou, thank the gods, but an abundance of guests required an abundance of food, drink, and space. Running his eyes over the hall, and comparing the numbers on their guest list, he pursed his lips. *Well…. Two out of three isn’t bad. Hope the foreign guests don’t mind the crush.* At least the native guests wouldn’t. After all, it isn’t a party until everybou’s up in each other’s faces! Whether from joy or fighting really depended on the mood and the mead. Hopefully, this all wouldn’t be too much… ~~~ While Caribou weddings weren’t exactly the same ceremony as one generally saw in the southern lands, there was a general commonality between them, in that the groom and bride didn’t come alone. Each would bring either a close relation, or a close friend, representing all the relationships surrounding the pair that would intertwine. Halvard had thought long and hard about who he would bring, but ultimately settled on what he felt was the best, and only choice. “Are you ready, Calder?” The bull called out to the one whom he had come to think of as a son. This was not a trivial question, as the younger bull had many quite legitimate reasons for being nervous about publicly appearing back in Whitescar. Halvard had strongly encouraged him to come out with him, though; partly for his own good, to face and conquer the demons of his memory, at least in some ways. The other reason, however, was one he wouldn’t say to his adopted son, as it had to do, again, with the politics of the situation. Calder wasn’t exactly a stereotypical bull, in many ways, but Halvard felt that what he himself was fighting this civil war for was to make a place for caribou like his son. This was a public show of solidarity for the family, and the gods have mercy on any who’d have a problem with it!
  4. The Will Test: the trial that all caribou living the viking life must face when they come of age. It is the ultimate judge of a young buck or calf’s fate. Should one pass the final challenge, they earn the opportunity to earn future glory in battle and other cherished pursuits. Meanwhile, those who fail are destined to remain in the shadows of caribou society forever, forgotten to the shadows. Or so the stories say, anyway. Naturally, Lími was a nervous wreck in the days leading up to his Will Test. As someone without much natural talent in the ways of combat, the adolescent boy had never really saw himself as viking material. Especially when he has stood in the shadows of great warriors like Jarl Sigrun and his elder half-brother. Compared to them, Lími was a virtual weakling. What chance did an untested boy like him have of successfully braving the Southern Wilds and retrieving the flower required for passing this foreboding rite of passage? Despite all of Jarl Sigrun’s mentoring and assurances, Lími still didn’t feel he was truly ready even as he stood in the shadow of the great Ice Wall isolating the cursed Wilds from the rest of Whitescar. Sigrun alone accompanied the adolescent bull from Askr all the way down south to the Wall, and here, she would have to leave her charge behind to face his Will Test. Lími would have to go on alone past the Wall, without any equipment to assist him in dealing with any potential obstacles or threats. Thus it was no surprise that for a long while, the lad stood in place as he gazed upon the ominous Wall, not daring to glance at the small hidden exit leading to the Wilds beyond.....
  5. Ijiroc: Phantom in Snow Far in the heartland of the north, deep in the forests of Whitescar, there is a creature known as Ijiroc. Native Caribou have passed this story down for generations, a creature having existed long before tribes had formed. The Ijiroc is said to live between this world and the next, forever stepping between the seen world and the invisible world. For Caribou seeing the Ijiroc is an omen. Places in which it walks are said to yield no life. There is nothing to gather or to hunt. The Ijiroc also has no true presence. Upon sighting the creature one could be assured it had been watching you the entire time you have been near and by. One cannot pursue or follow the Ijiroc once it decides to flee, for it becomes like a mirage, reappearing and vanishing at will. If it has a will left that is... The Ijiroc is said to have once been a Caribou itself. A great warrior that stalked the lands looking for trolls and mountain ogres to challenge. It is said the Caribou had traveled beyond the mountains, into the white abyss that swallows the Spine of the World Serpent. Many Caribou still hold superstitions of traveling to the Spine, in fear they too would become like the Ijiroc. Those who seek to travel to the lands which Ijiroc make its home become lost. Even the most skilled navigators lose their way and become prey to the deep, white walls of snow of the Spine. If traveling through the forest and you see its ethereal markings glowing from the wall of snows that trail along the base of the Spine, be sure to never turn your back to it, or to follow it. No one Caribou is sure, but perhaps there is not just one Ijiroc roaming the forests of snow and mist... - Haunted Paths Across Equus, a Pocket Guide
  6. The forest in the east was not always united under the major clan that it is now. In the past the forest was home to a multitude of warring clans. Raids, wars, stories of battles that are still sung today were what made up the lives of the forest dwelling clans. Origins of the smaller clans and tribes that settled in the dimensionally confusing forest of frosted ash are difficult to find. Theories are numerous and difficult to prove, the members of the modern clan believing they are descendants of an ancient breed of elk that migrated to the north after pony settlements arrived in the land that would one day be called Equestria. Wherever they hailed from, in the past these ancient tribes made their homes in multiple settlements across the forest. As any Skald will tell you, caribou will find reason to fight. In a place like the forest those reasons were mostly out of pragmatism. In the woods coming by certain resources was very difficult. As per usual for many clans raiding was a solution. A war had been raging in the trees of forest, one with little steel for blades and a great deal of time to learn efficient ways of fighting one another without steel or iron. Eventually though there came a time when the fighting needed to stop. Clan Stokkr: a clan of woodworkers, after the dethroning of it's old chieftain had offered to have a meeting between of the heads of the warring forest clans. This meeting was lead by Heigi who had come into possession of a powerful sword. After pointing out the various losses they had suffered and how together they could be stronger than any of the clans outside the forest... the heads of the smaller clans agreed to merge their clans as one over the ages. Upon deciding what to call themselves, one of the chiefs suggested why not after the very trees that they took shelter in: the Aska tree. Over time, the Askr Clan came into being. While this clan is definitely looking to the future ahead, it has not forgotten its roots. Events of the past have shaped this clan into the fearsome forest dwellers that they are and have made them both enemies and admirers throughout Whitescar's history. Like all caribou clans, Calves are taught to fight at a very young age. At first they are taught a variant of the martial art native to Whitescar: Glima. But after their calfhood is over and experiences are taught they are taught another way of fighting that the clan called Rodhovar: A rather brutal style of fighting that could only have been born from a culture so deeply wrought in conflict.The style of fighting is used exclusively for war and focuses heavily on attacking vulnerable areas on the body: Knees, hooves, Sides, hind legs and very often the head.It also teaches grappling, disarmament and use of terrain to fight. It's not uncommon among the caribou to see every cow, bull, and calf willing to take up a weapon in defense of their homes. In the Askr hold it is almost unthinkable to not be without an axe at your side if you’re an adult or a wooden sword if you're a calf. Due to the region's previously mentioned lack of easily locatable ore on the surface, Raiding parties and expeditions into Cave troll dwellings are often performed in order to retrieve ore for the crafting of armor, weapons, and other things, alongside raids of clans outside the forest. Like some other more 'civilized' clans in Whitescar, Askr is one where most every member has been a viking at some point in their lives. For some it was to prove their mettle as a warrior, explorer, or a merchant: As these are all things that are attributed to the clan's definition of “Viking”. Unlike some outsider believe though, being a viking is something the majority of this clan does for the entirety of their lives. Many of the older caribou along with the younger who have made a name for themselves have actually gone on to become farmers, woodworkers, skalds, or merchants. Social classes still exist in Askr as it does in most other clans. Karls are the commoner class of caribou. Smiths, merchants, explorers, warriors: a karl could be any of them. Above the karls, are the jarls: Clan Nobility. Jarls are wealthy, owner larger areas of land and territory then Karls do. Typically better equipped to handle conflicts and owning their own ships, but the most important part to becoming a jarl in any clan is the confidence and good graces of the caribou beneath him. If the popular opinion of any jarl crumbles, soon everything they own is sure to follow. When a jarl perishes it is usual that their oldest kin would inherit their estate, however if a karl has gained a great following in the community then they very well could supplant the jarl's son and inheriting their estate and responsibilities. The third and final social rank is the singular position of the Chieftain. The seat of Chieftain is a position of great importance to any clan, among large and powerful clans such ask Askr they are almost comparable to kings or queens in their own right if there is no High-King above them. Much like jarls, A chieftain is subject to the will of their clan: Usually worries and ills are relayed to them through the Jarls beneath the chieftain due to the difficulty managing the various settlements in the forests. Perhaps to facilitate bonds and a sense of unity in the clan, Karls and jarls alike will often have their offspring live among friendly clans or fellow members of the forest dwellers. Around middle adolescence a calf is to be shared with another in the clan or a close friend in order to gain new skills and be exposed to different approaches to problems. The effect of this practice seems to have made the clan very connected with each other, for all the good and bad that may bring. Despite the gentler side of caribou that Askr exhibits, certain insults to personal honor will have usually two outcomes: Apology and an agreed compensation, or a duel to either settle the score or decide who is in the right. Historically the clan has more than a few enemies beyond the wild lands they call home. Remnants of reclusive clans who dwell in the forest still attempt to make attacks on the hold every once in awhile, Troll raids and small scale invasions are still common in the more rural areas, and since the recent events of a group of outsiders they have had to deal with a plague that is still being examined. While Askr clansbou are not willing to ever attack their neighbors to the Northeast in Neighpon: they are far from fond of them. Oral Histories told by the skalds state that this could be due to the clan's history with the island nations. In the genesis of the clan's formation some of the clan's closest to the shoreline would make regular raids on neighponese vessels. In retaliation, the Neighponese waged war on the raiding clans, beginning a long series of conflicts with each side taking revenge for the previous attack and vice versa. One weakened nation against a newly formed united clan of the forest. Finally the fighting stopped when both a new chieftain and a young shogun realized that neither said was gaining any ground and both were only losing kin, and so a peace was reached. Even with the peace, it is hard to find a caribou among the Askr who doesn't have a story of how one of their ancestors fought and fell in that affair. Much like the merchant based warrior clan of Breen, the caribou of Askr put a great deal of value on personal appearance. Grooming, bathing, and dressing well is considered very important to both bulls and cows alike, with certain perfumes or colognes added to their coats. Typically all members of the clan own at least one article of clothing or an accessory that is the color green and bears their clan’s symbol. For upper class of Jarls it is common custom to come to peace-talks with enemy clans without cloth or armor to show that they are entirely unarmed in good faith. Seers can be found in any clan, but few are as valued as the ones who reside in Clan Askr. This change can likely be attributed to the skills that the shaman here have branched out into. Normally practitioners of Seidr might be more like hermits out in the wilds trying to meditate in order to peer into the vast tapestry of fate. Seers in Askr are more akin to medical shaman, working to mend the minds and bodies of those who have been wounded or taken ill. While they are not able to wield healing spells like some more magically gifted nations, it seems that they have taken a page from Zebra tribe-like methods of potion mixing. While they still practice Seidr and make their vague prophecies, the more mystical aspect has taken something of a backseat to the practical: To be used in times of emergency. Seers however do tend to be devout believers of the major deities to the clan: Hreinn, Tuktu, and Qalipu. Celebrations are very important to these Caribou, seemingly as a way to keep up morale and promote the sense of togetherness that has bound this clan as one so tightly with no threat of division in sight. Mead Halls are usually filled well and musical accompaniment is always to be expected. Dance lines are common occurrences along with instances of good natured flyting: A series of Insult said in verse along to the beat of the song of the moment. One of the traits among members of the clan that seems to exist in some capacity in everybou born in these forests is and unnaturally good sense of direction and spatial awareness. Historians native to Whitescar believe that this trait may have emerged from them in response to the Forest of Frosted Ash’s unusual dimensional properties. It has made them the perfect guides to any traveler in these woods and it seems difficult for them to lose track of where they are in the forest even if they try. One of the most well known thing about the Askr Clan to the world beyond Whitescar is their production of and mastery of Woodworking and carpentry of trees that share their name. The wood from these trees has the uncanny ability to absorb, dissipate, or outright nullify any magical induced energies: a trait that has confounded even the best minds of Neighpon and Equestria alike. To any Caribou Blacksmith who wishes for the best of anti magic inlays for their armor, they must come to Askr. If a clan wishes for the best designed Flying warship or longboat that can withstand almost any magical attack, they must come to Askr. With the abundance of wood in their region and their experiences with it, growing new trees and crafting them into great exploratory vessels and merchant ships has made the clan quite a living now. The warships of theirs that has ever fallen into rebel hooves are known to be a thorn in the side of any culture that relies heavily on magic, usually proving strong enough to withstand and dissipate magical attacks from some of the best magitech defenses and offenses. With their skill as fighters, craftsmanship, and close bonds among their kin, the Askr clan are a powerful force in Whitescar. Between their regular battles with the Rebel clans to the south-east and their home territories natural harshness, it is no surprise that they proof a fearsome foe to their enemies and a true friend to any ally who has earned their goodwill. Traveler’s Guide to Whitescar: Clans of Note Eydis Hildusdottir, Skald and Historian of Clan Hakon
  7. All across Whitescar Caribou deal with these creatures: Trolls. To an outsider it may appear these beings are no different to any of the other monstrous aggressive creatures that roam the lands. This is absolutely untrue. Trolls come in all different sizes, shapes, and can even have entirely different ways of existing. There are, however recurring acts that occur across most of the differing subspecies along with appearances. The most common breed of troll that causes the caribou inhabitants no shortness of grief would be the Cave troll. When outsiders think of the trolls of Whitescar these are most likely what are pictured: bull moose sized creatures, covered in shaggy brown fur, with longish tails. Their maws are full of sharp teeth held by long muzzles, small eyes and a thinly furred face. Known for traveling in packs, stealing from homesteads, and even kidnapping caribou from caravans and in their cradles: These trolls are detested even amongst the rebel clans. It's a shame that those who visit almost hear only about the latest events that the cavern dwellers have caused as they would see that there are a great deal of other trolls in the land who clash greatly with their ground dwelling counterparts. There is a friendly face among the trolls: The Nisse. The Nisse are a curious … and rather cute species of troll when you can convince them to show themselves. Not much larger than a mouse, A Nisse is covered in a large fluff of brown fur. From what has been seen their eyes are rarely visible, typically covered up by the aforementioned fur. They have slightly stubby muzzles and usually you can tell their mood by tiny smiles they sport or the tiny frowns they express... then again it's rare to get them to show themselves to a simple traveler. Usually Nisse make their homes in the dwellings of caribou, rather than messing up the place or stealing from the homeowners they've been most known for cleaning, and assisting with certain things around the house in exchange for food if the owner of the home can provide it. Finding and observing them proves to be a very difficult task, in no small part thanks to their impressive speed and surprising strength. There are no records of them ever harming a caribou of their own accord, rather they have been known to be a great hindrance to thieves who enter a home uninvited. A middle ground between friendly and hostile has been most notably filled by the neutral Forest Trolls. These beings are large enough you could conceivably build a small house on their backs if said backs weren't covered in shrubbery and trees of varying sizes. They seem to be herbivorous, mostly eating berry bushes of all types. If approached carefully and respectfully they are known to tolerate the presence of Caribou so long as they don't attempt anything aggressive towards them. The most unusual trolls that Caribou have dealt with would be the mysterious Hulder. Some skalds and historians are still unsure if they can be called true trolls at all. Seeing as the Hulder have a strange form of unusually attractive members of the caribou species with some subtle and not so subtle hints at their troll origins. A traveler could have met a Hulder without even knowing, as all of them who appear to the rest of Caribou kind wear thick clothing such as robes in order to hide the troll tails that take the place of the small tufted tails natural caribou have. Still a very reclusive species they are not known to be aggressive, in fact they are comparable to the Nisse in that they will sometimes assist hardworking caribou with tasks and then just disappear. The most dangerous and frightening Troll breeds would be elemental trolls. Mountain trolls, Rime Trolls, Wind Trolls, and Sea trolls. These trolls are especially notorious... but few only three of these types have been seen regularly. The Mountain trolls are great stone behemoths, dangerously territorial and aggressive they seem to monitor and patrol the spine of the world serpent. The reason these trolls are rarely encountered during daytimes was made known through them. When the daylight comes and hits them, they turn to their namesake and merge into the mountains until the sunlight fades. Rime trolls also disappear during the daytime, but are also limited to appearing only during freak snowstorms and blizzards. Suspected to be kin to the Wind troll who roam the flatlands. They are known for their ability to produce gale force, freezing winds from their maws. One of the troll breeds who show some form of intelligence, they are often accompanied by large white lupine creatures who produce small whiteouts around them. Any great windstorm that plagues the flatlands or plains out of nowhere at night can readily be blamed on the Wind Trolls known as the Kajsa. Despite their tendency to cause dangerous windstorms they are relatively rare to anger. It is possible to converse with one but don't expect to hold it's attention long before you're blown to the distance for being “Boring”. Sea Trolls are only seen on Whitescar shorelines. Much like the trolls native to the mountains, they tower over most creatures. They tend to build small, crude settlements along the shores and almost never venture inland. They are however fiercely terrotorial and will ambush and assault any vessel in the water or airship that is low enough for them to bring down via thrown projectile. On occasion these creatures can be seen in battles with the Kaiju who harass neighpon, recent reports suggest that they may be trying to tame younger versions of the beasts for unknown purposes. Finally we come to the most difficult to find breed of troll in Whitescare: The Fire Trolls called the Surtr. Visual accounts of this breed are hard to come by as they often make residence in the deepest caverns and ancient ruins of Whitescar. Journals by explorers depict them as being jet black quadrupedal giants with burning orange eyes. Thankfully these beasts rarely leave their dwellings unless provoked or something is stolen from them. To any travelers curious about the trolls. I advise you not try to observe or analyze these creatures without a native guide. Magical Fauna of Whitescar: Trolls Eydis Hildusdottir, Skald and Historian of Clan Hakon
  8. A vast sea of trees... a very accurate description of the Forest that takes up the North and eastern territories of Whitescar. To those who approach this intimidating place would find the name of it confusing, depending on what season one came to see it. Much like all of the lands outside of the serpent's spine, The Whitescar forest is verdant land of such grace that it rivals even that of the forests of Equestria: at least during the warmer season. During the winter seasons is when it lives up to it's name, just like the rest of the land it rests in. As things grow colder, most of the trees that make up the body of the forest turn various shades of ashen gray. Some of the trunks and leaves shifting between muted, dull blues, purples and greens depending on the breed of flora. Those who know the forest well tend not to travel much outside of their homes on the winter nights as it is easy to become lost and wander off the roads. The warmer seasons of Whitescar are when the untamed beauty of the forest is on full display. Lush, tall grasses grow. Great canopies of various trees that let rays from the sun shine through the leaves like fleeting rays of warmth. Flowers, roots, and all types of unusual forms of plant life grow all throughout the soil. Despite the verdant growth, farming is far from easy. Harvesting of the forest's namesake trees occurs fairly often by the powerful clan of the region. The Askr Tree is the abundant in this part of Whitescar: A powerful boon that has helped maintain the power of Clan armies and the creation of longboats due to it's unusual property that allows it to disrupt and nullify many types of magic. Beasts and odd magical beings still roam these woods actively, especially during the night. It is not uncommon to find abandoned settlements set up by those attempting to make a living farther away from the paths showing signs of recent Great troll attacks. Other threats that stalk this forest do exist, but once the sun sets it is best to stay close to the path and set up a camp … and also make sure that you enlist the aide of the Nisse: a group of magical beings that are said to live all throughout the forest. Not dissimilar to the 'breezies' of equestria (at least in size). These entities from the accounts of those who say they've seen them... are diminutive creatures who wear small hats, are sturdy and quick. Gaining their favor by leaving treats outside your hearth or by your campire will result in their protection for the night for campers, and sometimes even useful items brought to them as well. The are tails of other species of troll that stalk the forest, ones I at least think I have not run into. A more difficult to find subspecies of them are said to be heard in the forests at any time of day. These trolls are called the Hulder: The secret. Despite the ominous name, it is entirely possible for a polite visitor to have met them and never known it due to the fact they are identical to caribou. Usually they wear thrick clothing that hides their hind quarters as unlike true clansbou of whitescar... they have the tail of a troll. Even if by some miracle a traveler finds one they are not known to be aggressive and are supposedly quite kind and charitable, usually helping some of the settlers farther away from the clan. Not everything in the forests is settlers and trolls though. There are still old clan sites and battlegrounds that dot this great expanse. ON the few times I asked to go off the trail with my guide he showed me one of the old burial Barrows. Old ruins and large crypts run deep beneath this mounds, some holding treasures, others holding curses. The necromancers who manage to eek out a living in the forest often work their crafts in ancient places like this. The one tomb that we visited had apparently been visited before by one dark sorcerer, but for whatever reason he hadn't returned. At the bottom of the tomb there was a small clearing with trees and a pond, along with a smallish hoard of treasure from ages past. We left it undisturbed. If you meet a member of the clan that holds a tight grip on this forest: The Askr. They would tell you when in the “Skog av Vintern Aska”, that you must follow these three rules. 1. Bring a guide from their clan along if you plan to explore. 2. If you don't plan to explore, stick to the path. 3. Bring food or learn to forage. if you ignore the first two rules: You'll be there for a while. Having strayed from the ath once, I was lucky to be found my guide. While I was in the woods on my own, it felt as if things were much larger. I managed to find an opening in the canopy... and it looked as if the forest had grown five times its size. The Askr guide tells me that the forest has a way of messing with travelers. If you're off the path, distance slowly begins to mean nothing. When we arrived at the clan's city... there was mention of other, secret trails that only the clan dares to tread, but out of respect for my guide: I chose not to dwell on them. Wanderer's Guide to Whitescar Eydis Hildusdottir, Skald and Historian of Clan Hakon
  9. Many ages ago... before even the formation of the land of Neighpon. A great chieftain of the Longma who would be known as the Ryuma in time was gifted a great sword by the Long Dragons. A sword of great length that sung when unsheathed, strong enough to cut through most armors, and damage even the ones it could not fully break. In the many clan wars that had gone in in ancient Long Guo this chieftain proved to be a deadly opponent and wise, if occasionally hot headed leader. Towards the end of the many clan skirmishes there was talks of a great imperial dynasty and unification. The chieftain of this particular clan defied the unification of Long Guo, moving to the nearby lands of Neighpon to carve out a new life for his clan in this land along with Pony species that had settled as well. Here was where the sword gained its name,"Ninhonto no Uta": The Sword of Songs. In neighpon this blade and it's wielder gained a name for itself as it was used in and turned the tide of many battles... the most famous of wars fought with it between caribou clans who sought to take the land from the current inhabitants. The blade demoralized enemy troops, sent commanders packing (sometimes worse). Through the many battles the blade had been reforged several times but with the combined efforts of the Daimyos of that age the caribou menace had been pushed back. Over the ages, The Ninhonto no Uta fell into disuse. In time the species of Neighpon came to see it of their victory over the caribou of Whitescar and a symbol of the land's strength and considered an icon of the country's history: a great artifact. On the day it was set to be delivered to Kyoma to be kept safe in a museum... it did not arrive. The vessel carrying the relic of the country's triumph never arrived in port, and never was found. In the end life went on as usual for the country, with prosperous days ahead. ... The story of sword however, did not end. There are records of a caribou vessel taking a certain ship's cargo after a battle. An oversized blade the crew called a "Nodachi" was taken with intent of being sold off by the new holders of the weapon. They did not bother to unsheath it, to a caribou the neighponese nodachi was an inefficient tool, not meant to meet the thick armors of Caribou forged steel. Finding an owner who cared for a weapon such as this was hard when the blade was first being left to hang in a shop in a bazaar. One day a Bull named Helgi, from an obscure eastern clan took an interest and spent some money on the exotic tool, and brought it home to his family. When unsheathed it made his wife and calves giggle in delight at the beautiful songs it sung (and curiously in the caribou's native tongue no less!). The Clan Helgi belonged to were a group of crafts-bou. Helgi himself, was a woodcutter. Their clan made the best of the magical wooden Inlays that all the caribou used and perfected the process of making flying longboats. The trees they carved down were tough, resilient... and had magic absorbing and nullifying properties when treated right. Many of Helgi's days were spent cutting down trees to be used in the process, scavenging for food for his family and one day and fixing their hit to protect them from the harsh cold of the land. A day when he was hard at work with the first option was the day that would mark a great change in his fate. A broken axe: This was how it began. He had only just gotten to the perfect point when the tree would fall down. Just a few more good nicks and it would be set for the next stage of the inlay preparation process. He took up the sword: It had an edge... that was good enough. He lifted the blade up and swung... and was surprised when he saw the sword had cut through not only the tree before him like it wasn't even there, but also the five trees behind it! He could hardly believe his eyes! This was much more useful than he'd thought! The excited caribou named the sword on the spot. He called her the "skogsröjning sång": The forest clearing song". Helgi kept the properties of the blade secret, he was happy enough making enough coin to give his family the better life they needed. No more cold nights where they needed to nail their furskin "door" shut. No more worrying over if they could have a good life... and for a time Helgi had lived happily. Then came the days of the two faced Chieftain. The chieftain of their eastern clan had changed... their older chieftain having passed under mysterious circumstances left them under the reign of dangerous bull. A warrior with a kind face, but the heart of a lindwurm underneath. Forcing crafters to become soldiers in unwinnable situations in attempts to seize power and territories from other clans. Food levels plummeting and some calves being taken to serve as soldiers away from their parents. For the sake of his family and all the Clan, Helgi challenged the chieftain to a duel for the fate of their clan before he brought them into utter ruin. To the duel, the sweet faced monster brought a great hammer. Helgi on his end held an oversized sword still in its sheath. He applauded the stallion's audacity to bring such a weapon to a fight against an opponent in finer armor such as his. The duel started... and with one swing, and a snippet of a verse of a song it was done. The chieftain Fell and Then rose Helgi, The new chieftain... of the Askr Clan. This is a story of Helgi. One of the oldest heroes of the history of the Askr and his magical singing sword. This blade has been with the Whitescar clan from their earliest days. AS the clan grew the blade would prove to be something they cherished and rarely used... only when situations grew dire. As Askr grew more prosperous, attacks on the hold grew less regular.. but when they came enemies of the clan would come in force. Many of these attacks were repelled on the clan's own strength, but some of the most horrifying siege's required the use of the clan's first artifact weapon... And always this blade would be used by the best the clan had to offer. The weapon proved to be an excellent trump card against invasions and halted many. Heroes from the rise of the clan rose to the things of legend and would sometimes fall in battle with it in hoof, but always with their enemy having fallen first. The blade has slain lindwurms and whiteout wolves... and has on occasion disposed of commanders for ages until it's home clan learned the finer points of battle and became the most powerful clan in the east... now it is held safe in the Chieftain's hold and many visiting species from other nations who are brave enough to tour Whitescar have seen this mystical blade. Over the ages and through it's many battles it has been changed, the blade has remained the same but the hilt, the pommel, the grip, it even has a new sheathe... It was on a day that it was unsheathed that a neighponese visitor believed that it was the sword of myth... the Ninhonto no Uta. In the hooves of caribou! Word has spread across whitescar and Neighpon and has reached even neighboring countries of a debate between the chieftain of the clan holding the blade and none other than the shogun of Neighpon. Historians, artificers, diplomats, and nearby rulers and the politically knowledgeable specie is free to observe these events as they go on with messages being relayed to parties in the audience present. The history between Neighpon and Whitescar is a heated one. More stubborn and traditional clans from the region still ransack villages, attack and steal vessels along with the cargo on board... Today a major player in the Whitescar political scene whose territory is close to Neighpon will speak to it's leader to decide the fate of the blade, history, and the relationship between Neighpon and Whitescar. The debate will be held in Canterlot with anyone present free to comment and converse with fellow audience member's via messengers in the audience. Debaters: Chieftain Sigrun of Clan Askr Rakuen Ryuichi Shogun of Neighpon Debater's advisors: (Sigrun) Halvard of the Vakystra (Ryuichi) Sanda Audience: Aikuro(?) Medo Ice storm Sunrise skies Javasun Swift Squall I hope there are some parties interested in seeing how this plays out!
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