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The Journal of Marsys Lightouch
Sunsebb 15, 635 CY (Evening)

I look out in the twilight across the shallow arm of the Nyr Dyv as it cradles around my home of Elmshire; and I have to laugh at the events of this morning. I had just finished telling my parents that it was time for me to go off on my own in search of adventure. My mother, a Paladin of our goddess Yondalla, reminded me of our agreement that until I acquired more skill I would only train and go on journeys with trusted family friends.

I told her I had learned all I could that way. Before it became an argument my father intervened and asked if there was no wisdom that she could give that would bring a compromise. Thinking for a moment she relented that if she would promise to allow me to go if adventure walked to my doorstep. As I was about to protest the unfairness of such a demand there was a knock at our door.

Now, in the interest of a good story I could say that at that moment I knew that destiny was upon the doorstep. But, to be honest, I thought it was our neighbor Sandy seeking butter…as she did twice a week. I swear they drink butter in that house. I mean they may eat it, but I think they drink it…it seems to go so fast that drinking sounds right. Of course…anyway.

It was not until I heard the practiced voice of a messenger ask: “Is this the home of Master Hubert Lightouch Master Tobacconist, his wife Mary Ann esteemed Paladin of the Hearth the parents of Lady Marsys Lightouch?”

My father nodded slowly taking a drag on his pipe: “I suppose we’re all that and some things on the side.”

I came around the corner and saw a messenger in the clothing of the Kingdom of Geoff bearing the standards of both that king and the Canon of Rao, ruler of Veluna and head of the church of the god of reason, serenity and peace. Beyond him the street was filling with the curious. Such a site was not common in Elmshire even though we were a busy port by halfling standards.

“I have a message…” he continued as my mother moved forward in the assumption we all shared that it was for her, “for lady Marsys.” He finished. The stunned silence drifted toward me as my parents turned toward me with mild accusation. The shock on my face alerted them to my own clueless nature relating to the situation.

The reply was mine as he held out a letter sealed with the royal crest of Geoff and the Archclericy of Veluna. And in a stellar beginning to my independent adventuring career I said: “Is this some kind of practical joke?”

The messenger smiled, “Not to my knowledge.”

I took the letter an opened it. After I read it I handed it to my father who read it with my mother. She nodded to the messenger and said, “You will of course let us discuss this.” He nodded and indicated where he could be found within the next three hours if there was a reply other than the ones offered in the letter.

We discussed it for nearly the allotted three hours. That we were given the time indicated that those sending the letter knew the specifics of my situation with my reluctant parents. In the end it was decided that I would go and start the life I had trained for. And, to my surprise, my father decided that I would go and spend Needfest there: “You can come back for many holidays. But not always. And this time you can spend it in a place celebrating a great event. And you need to get used to sometimes being away on those days. It is best to start now.” My mother seemed about to object but saw the wisdom in it.

My father left the room and returned with a case containing something I had never seen before. “Your grandfather had the wanderlust like you…these were his.”

I opened the case to see three exquisite daggers.

“They come back when you throw them,” my father said, “he swore they saved his life over and over.”

I was stunned, “I never found these,” I said, “and I’ve searched through this whole house hundreds of times…”

“Yes,” my father interrupted, “Searching for treasure as a child, well halfling fathers are better at hiding things than kings. Kings do not have such curious children.” He reached into the bottom of the case and carefully unwrapped a ring with an etching of our mother goddess sheltering small children. “Magic,” he said, “for protection.”

So I sit here now in early evening with the reflected stars of early evening visible on the Nyr Dyv. The winter trade moves slowly from the Free City of Greyhawk and Dyvers and it is far more silent that one might expect. And for the first time since I planned my whole life out, I realize that I may not be home for the holidays. My father chose the time of my departure as a parting lesson. That in this life there will be things I can not control. I am both terrified and excited at the prospect. I think, I will not mention to him, that I believe I am more excited at the prospect.

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