The Calling of the Paragon
By Ru Mei Shi
19th of Ches, the Spring Equinox
Thunderholme Embassy, North Quarter, Arabel
An announcement was to be made to her people by the Queen of Thunderholme, Brita Thunderhammer. Gathered in the Embassy of Arabel were many a dignitary of Thunderholme. Elders, lairds and priests at the fore of the table, with the Queen and High Priest, and dwarven adventurers gathered at the end of the table, invited to join their people. Gathered around them, standing, were many an adventurer of Arabel and members of the local factions. As people patiently waited to hear the Queen, many a dwarven face were stoic, but it was not long that a few visages cracked and gave way to hints of worry. Whatever was to come, it had the dwarven people on edge.
Soon however, the Queen called for the meeting to start by slamming her mighty hammer on the table and simply uttered the word: Begin!
High Priest Thifur then took the floor and spoke to his people: "Lads... What I am about to tell you... you all heard the chanting, yes? There has been a calling. I am not sure what is it for, but it is from the Allfather himself." At this point Laird Glimmerforge encouraged the Prince to continue. The people must learn. The Prince warned his people: "The Allfather is under attack by something." This took no time to bring an uproar and a bout of shouts from all dwarves. This was preposterous in the eye of many. Shock and disbelief. Anger and tempers flaring. Gnomes who had invited themselves at the table were removed from their seat as they chattered. Eventually, the Queen roared for silence. She was angry. She had left her newborn children for this meeting and warned them she had no time for squabbles. This was a matter of highest priority. A bolt of lightning hurled by the Queen commanded order.
When a semblance of order returned, the Prince resumed. "There is hope!" He then asked Master Ogretoes to tell his people about the Paragon. The old dwarf obliged. "If what the High Priest and other clergyfolk say are true, the Allfather made a call for a Paragon. Reckon many of you youngfolk have never heard the stories. The old texts are vague, we have not had but maybe three or four in the history of the dwarves. A Paragon is the best of all of us, carrying within him or her the same spark the Allfather Moradin breathed into iron and gave birth to the stoutfolk." The younger dwarves were stunt a moment by this news. Then the Prince informed them that they now had to find this Paragon. That is the task before the dwarven people.
Questions flew from the assembly. Where is this Paragon? How do we know who it is? Is it real at all? Is it a He or a She? Is this Paragon even born yet? To this squabble of question, even the High Priest lost his patience and called for silence, and soon had it. "We do not know if this Paragon is here of half way around the world" he informed them. "Wherever he or she is, we must find the Paragon and learn what is attacking the Allfather".
Among the dwarves was Chronicler Bhaldor of the Scriptorium of Arabel. The Queen gave him the room to speak as he had something to say. "We are about something historical and dire. Like the many stories told by our elders. Something to rejoice about. On my recent investigations, I came to learn there is a great Orcan War happening in the region and I believe they are after some powerful artifact called the Warcaller. The snouts be our fierce enemies ever since stone was created. I believe we should investigate the matter closely if we have no clue of what is harming the Allfather. Linked or not, it is a serious, and dangerous, matter to look into."
From the crowd, two women showed interest to speak to the dwarves. The Queen first gave permission Initiate Lucrecia Tindra to speak. She asked for more information about the Paragon, so that she may aid in finding him or her. Bhaldor informed her that the Paragons are their saints. Every once in centuries or so, they rise to protect the people. The Queen informed her that information would be sorted out on the matter for those who wished to aid. The other woman, one known as Dy'nei of Arael, was then given permission to speak. She said she believed she was able to help them as a representative of the Baroness. She informed them she has been studying the orcs over the last week, their tribe and this Warcaller. They are fighting over the artefact but it is also a fight with their (the orcs) paragon as well. She offered to inform the dwarves in details later on all her research about the various tribes like the White Claws, the Bloody Moon, the Black Skulls...
Laird Blackforged then said it was now their divine right to demand that the dwarven warforged be released. This brought much argument. Some claiming they were no longer dwarves, other protesting they had a right to answer the divine call of the gods. The Prince then called for master Glimmerforge to explain to the young ones what the warforged were, with the assistance of Master Glim Turen, a gnome of the Arabellan Factory. They said to them all, that the Warforged are the blessed dwarves of Dugmaren Brightmantle. But too, are they the children of the Moradinsamman. Dwarves who have left their flesh bodies to live eternally as the finest crafted creatures of all time. Their souls will never tire nor wear down, their bodies can be modified, improved they are eternal. The knowledge they hold will never be forgotten, nor will the craft they teach be worn down by time, age or injury. Eight of these Warforged Dwarves exists, one of them being none other than the uncle of Laird Kurt Blackforged. However, the King of Cormyr has ordered the destruction of all warforged, and as of this writing, they are all held and locked up until their end. Blessed be Lord Lhal, though, she has managed to see their termination suspended.
All these news now makes the work of the dwarves threefold.
Firstly, they must figure out what is attacking the Allfather. They suspect it may be the orcs, so they find out what they are up to. The dwarves must find a way to free their brethren Warforged so they may join the fight. And of course, most importantly, to find the Paragon.
Not long after, the end of the meeting was called, a strike of the Queen's hammer bringing it to an end, the dwarves and adventurers setting out for their tasks.
Who are these Paragon of the past? And this new chosen of the Allfather?