Private Tales Hexed

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer


Occult Investigator
Character Biography
"He's turned off the road, into the woods!"

"In a hurry."

"Get after him!"

The pack of bandits had been trailing the travellers for nearly an hour, waiting for darkness to fall. They had passed the man and his son on the road. With such extravegent clothes and a fine instrument the man had to be wealthy.

"Go, go!"

The group rushed off the beaten track and into the woods. They had run quickly enough to catch sight of the lantern bobbing ahead of them.

"Rahn, to the left, Bosnic to the right!" hissed their leader. They stopped being quiet and smashed their way through the undergrowth. The later ahead of them bobbed up and down quickly, but he wouldn't escape them with a young one.

They weren't monsters. They would merely take all of his possessions and let the pair continue on their journey.

The lantern stopped. The leader of the pack hoped their quarry didn't do something stupid like turn to fight.

They all closed on the lantern at once.

The light was extinguished. The group all rushed into an empty clearing, looking to one another in the moonslight.

A raven cawed at them from the trees above.

Baise listened to the distant sounds of confused voices. He silently kissed the top of Jude's hair. Crouched down, he had his arms around the boy. He would wait until the bandits were back on the road before setting camp for the night.

"That was easy," Jude murmured.

It was a game they had played before. Baise looked like an easy target on the roads, but he would be damned before abandoning fashion for safety.

After all, he had not tricked the bandits to protect himself and Jude from coming to harm.

"Good morning!" Baise called out brightly. Jude scampered ahead of him into the inn.

The innkeeper took one look at him. His eyes settled on the lute.

"No fucking bards. Not at this hour."

Baise smiled and ignored him.

"Do you have breakfast? Lodgings perhaps? I'm here to help break a curse."

Few people could read or write, so word of mouth was often the best way to find the source of the trouble. The inn was the heart of a town and if anyone knew where to set him, they would be here.
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He had been sent on a wild goose chase, every day that passed was a reminder of how they wanted him away from Vel Anir. Lysander was looking at the plate of mushrooms and bread. He didn’t much care for the bread served around the Falwood. It was hard and bitter, and without honey or hot tea, he decided it was divine punishment.

What had he done that was so bad to deserve this? To travel, searching for a man who probably no longer exists, and be away from his brother. They had a plan to be together. Now Kalix was in jail and Lysander was thinking about finding a dentist to check his right molar because he swore he heard a crack.

His blue eyes went to the inn keeper just to his left. The glance was quick, a flicker of movement as if it was an accident. Help break a curse? Was he also after… no, it couldn’t be. Lysander’s attention turned to the child. Of course, he had to have misheard him.

No one would bring a child when trying to catch Him. At least a good parent wouldn’t. The wife of the innkeeper had been near by and she joined the men.

“You’re not that famous white-haired wanderer with the metal arm.” She said, looking rather suspicious as she paid attention to his attire and then looked to where the little boy had ran. Lys was still staring at the child, no longer chewing he put his bread down and looked down at his plate.

It was rude to stare.

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"Am I the famous, white haired wanderer with the metal arm?" Baise echoed.

He maintained his pleasant demeanour, not a hint of sarcasm in the rhetorical question. He sauntered over towards the bar.

It was quite clear that Baise had been about to rest his elbows on the block of wood, until he saw the state of it. He kept his well dressed arms at his sides.

"I'm afraid if you were hoping for such a person, that you will have to continue to wait. A shame really, that sounds like someone who would really have this trouble sorted out in no time," Baise said.

He glanced over his shoulder, catching the young man glancing up to watch the exchange.

"Good morning," Baise called out pleasantly. Jude almost immediately echoed the greeting.

"You can have breakfast and lodgings," the innkeeper asserted. "But I don't think you'd be wanting after any trouble."

"Of course, I can understand that," Baise replied. "I'm not one for trouble. However, I do have a little of the magical learnings and I always try and help when I can."
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Cold blue eyes were brought back up to the man in the expensive robes, switching to the child and then back to what Lysander could only be presumed to be the father. He was already listening in on the conversation, this time he didn’t try to hide it. Especially not when the man suggested he could use magic. Once more, Lysander looked at the father’s attire.

Someone from Elbion, perhaps? If that were the case, they would have no chance. Lysander stood up, wiping his fingers on his pants, plucking at the fabric before patting it back down in place.

You’re here because of the Dreaming Man, aren’t you.” Lysander’s voice was devoid of any of the inflections that should be present when asking a question. It sounded like a statement. His dead eyes, the slack face with lips perpetually downturned, and the dull tone would have made one assume Lysander could care less about the Dreaming Man like one cared about a single ant on the ground.

“Oh, so he can say more than three words, after all.” The wife said bitterly under her breath. Lysander gestured to the child.

You have a babysitter?

"The Dreaming man," Baise repeated, taking his time over every word.

Baise took a moment to consider the young man who stood up. He was giving very little away.

Baise's hazel eyes turned to a shade of green.

"I did not know that there was someone known to be causing trouble. But I suppose that might be why I am here."

Dreaming man. It sounded even more like trouble from a fae domain. That was exactly the kind of trouble Baise was adept in dispelling.

"I'm afraid I did not bring a carer for Jude with me, but I would never put anyone in harms way. I think that is what you are asking," Baise replied, his voice soft and melodic. He rested a hand on Jude's shoulder.

"Is that why you are here?" Baise asked, wearing an easy smile as he lifted Jude onto a stool before sitting down himself.
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Lysander sat back down, staring at the man and his son. A part of him wondered if this man could even do much magic, or if it was nothing more than simple college tricks that could do little in protecting himself, and another wondered why he would come to this town if it was not to catch the Dreaming Man.

Yes it is.” Lysander said. There was no need to hide it now, not when he offered this name to begin with. He wasn’t going to get anywhere with the innkeeper and his wife, they were far too superstitious when it came to outsiders. They were already wary of Lysander. He carried swords. He had left them in his room, if only to hopefully appease them. It did not mollify the innkeeper’s wife.

Can you protect him?” Lysander pointed at the redhead. “They say children get pulled into a labyrinth if He sees them.” And if that were the case, not even Lysander could help. His magic was force, it was power, and it did little to dissuade those who knew dreams and souls and spirits.

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"Jude will be safe," Baise said. "But if you are truly certain that you know who - or what - is the cause of this town's woes then perhaps I will find someone to look after Jude for a little while."

Two wooden bowls filled with steaming porridge were sat down on the bar. They came with another warning of: "No lute."

Baise acknowledged the warning with a flippant salute.

This was sounding more and more like a fae problem. Not the light mischief of a bored young creature, but something darker and more malevolent.

"Very kind of you sir, to be looking out for our safety," Baise said, turning back to the young man.

He saw a flutter of movement by the window. One of their three ravens was trying to listen in on the drama.

"I am Baise and this is Jude."

The bow of his head was far more polite than the crude imitation of a salute the bartender had been given.

"Have you got far with your search, if you do not mind me enquiring?"
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Lysander.” He said. His eyes went between Baise and Jude. They were simple names, although one had more flair than the other. Surely, Baise had to be Elbionese. No Anirian would name their son Baise, there was no warlike grandeur to it. The dreadlord could appreciate, at the very least, the respect Baise could give. Perhaps he wasn’t completely Elbionese?

I arrived two days ago.” Lysander said, his voice still dull but perhaps less unpleasant sounding than it had before. “And I am not certain on who the Dreaming Man is or what he does. It’s a rumor. Most of what I have are rumors. But there are two things for certain. When I first arrived someone’s home was melting, wood and steel acting like wax. That was blamed on the Dreaming Man. Yesterday someone turned into a tree. When they were conscious they believed there to be nothing peculiar to warrant a transformation.” He cleared his throat. “That man can no longer speak. I wonder today what absurdities could be found around town.

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Baise's eyes widened, his irises turning to a deep shade of viridian. He didn't look frightened. He almost looked excited.

"Can I see the house?" Jude asked.

"You may, I imagine we might be relatively safe in the middle of the day," Baise asserted. He had relatively little to go on to make such an assertion.

"Lysander," Baise said, returning his attention to the man. "Would you tell me what you were planning next or - either way - if you would perhaps show us this house?"

"After breakfast?" Jude asked.

Baise glanced towards the windows. A bird flapped it's wings loudly.

"After breakfast."
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Jude’s excitement seemed to match his father’s. Lysander supposed the apple never fell too far from the tree, looking between the father and son. He did find it a bit strange that Jude would be interested in seeing a melted house, although, Lysander supposed it was only natural. A house half melted, with walls and windows no longer solid but also not liquid. A viscous blend of colors with a rubber like texture.

Really, Lysander had been more interested in watching the man slowly turn into a tree. It was gruesome and horrific, but nothing unlike the horrors of the Academy. Or his own mind.

I had planned to walk around and see what peculiarities were about.” That was almost what the whole town was doing at this point. Every day they waited to see what surreal fragment of one’s imagination had become reality, twisting and bending at the worn fabric of their serene life. “The house could have more clues.” No one had dared stepped inside, afraid that if they did they would melt as well. “It was still melting yesterday.”

He wondered when they would arrive if all that would be left would be a muddy puddle. He wondered if he stepped into it if he would begin to melt as well. There were too many questions, and truly, Lysander was the type to observe and analyze for days until coming to a conclusion. It was why he was rarely wrong, as long as he had enough time to think about things.

After breakfast,” he agreed, “and I hope the day and sunlight do protect us.” He didn’t want to become a tree.

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"Of course, after breakfast!" Baise declared.

Jude soon had a spoon in his hand, his head down and his interest in the melted house had been replaced.

"But of course Breakfast is a good time to do some thinking and some talking," Baise said, gesticulating with his free hand. He was as expressive with his body language as he was with his tone His eyes had changed colour again.

"When this person was conscious they believed there to be nothing peculiar to warrant a transformation. That's what you said?

"Why a focus on the conscious? Why the Dreaming Man? Does he manifest people's dreams do you think? Powerful magic that!"
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Baise talked too much, Lysander thought, neither feeling it to be positive or negative but fact. There were lots of people that talked too much. His brother was one of those people. Lysander only thought that people who spoke a lot were either thinking out loud or not thinking at all.

I said when they were conscious because their mind fragmented the more they turned into a tree.” Lysander clarified. “Their speech recessed into simple words. They couldn’t understand questions or understand how to answer them. At the end, they could only make sounds.” People had also stayed far away from the tree-man.

Lysander shrugged at Blaise’s suggestion of it being powerful magic.

Sounds more like a curse.” Was what he said in regards to that.
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Even though he had taken a full spoon of porridge, Baise managed to be expressive with both hands. A hand shrug showed that the conciousness of the victim seemed obvious and that Baise had simply failed to follow.

"Mhmm..." he went before swallowing his mouthful.

"But a powerful curse perhaps."

Baised hunched forwards on his stool, leaning towards the young man.

"Any wild theories?" he asked, listening intently.
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Well, he did have a wild theory, but it was a theory he was certain that no one would like or would could seriously consider. Especially when Lysander had no proof of what he was about to say next.

I think the Dreaming Man is innocent.” Lysander said. “If it is a curse. There’s only one constant person it’s affecting. If it’s magic then he doesn’t know how to use it yet.” There was a pause as he looked down at his squishy mushrooms. “I don’t believe in coincidence.” He said as he stabbed a poor mushroom with his fork to then bring up to his mouth. He hated the texture of mushrooms.
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Baise canted his head to one side.

The way he repeated I don't believe in coincidence made Baise think the young man had decided that fate was also against him personally.

Not, Baise imagined, just because of the mushrooms.

"I think we are straying into semantics when magic is something so broad and wild that our words carry no weight when the wind changes," Baise said.

"But, that is an interesting idea. No rhyme or reason to the effects or to the target. When we sleep, many boundaries become much thinner."

"Tell me two things: have their been any smaller stories of strange events at night before these?

"And would you like me to buy you something different for breakfast?"
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I have money. I don’t like wasting food.” And every now and then he needed to eat some vegetables instead of his usual preference for meat pies. As if to prove his point, he speared more mushrooms onto the tines of his fork and took another begrudging bite, chewing quickly and trying not to think about the brown-gray sludge sliding down his throat.

He cleared his throat before speaking.

One woman said at night her goats were speaking.” There was nothing too unusual other than that, but Lysander had waited around the yard at night and the goats were not speaking. They were quiet. He wasn’t sure if the woman could be trusted or not. “And a man said a large bird landed on his roof asking for tobacco.” Leander didn’t see talon-scratched on the thin shingles of the man’s roof so that had been disregarded as well.

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On the two additions to the story, Jude sat bolt upright on his stool. Baise laid a hand on the boy's shoulder. He needed to curb his enthusiasm.

Baise would not be able to live with himself if he place Jude into a situation that could cause serious harm.

If it came to it, he needed to be able to tell Jude to run and hide and for the boy to do as he was told.

"I admire you sticking to your values," Baise replied. Even if it made him uncomfortable seeing the young man forcing the slimy fungus down his throat.

"I suggest then that we go and visit all of these sites. I would be grateful if you could show us where they are."
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I shall eat faster then.” Lysander said. He could force himself to do anything, and he proved the sentiment as much as he finished his plate and the rest of his bread that tasted like brick. He wiped his hands on his pants, used the back of his hand to wipe his mouth and then stood up.

I need my swords. I’ll meet you outside.” Without looking back at the duo, Lysander headed up the stairs to the second floor where his room was. Soon enough he was already heading back down the stairs, his blades strapped to either side of his hip and other little things now attached to his utility belt. Without even looking at the table they had been at, Lysander went outside to wait, just as he said he would.

The streets were already picking up with activity from the townsfolk.

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"Swords. More than one," Baise said to Jude once Lysander had gone to his room. "Do you think he swings both at once or carries spares?" he asked Jude.

"I hope he swings three at once!" Jude replied.

"You know what to do if we get into trouble, don't you?" Baise asked.

"Run and hide. Count quietly and wait for Tiberius, Vaspien and Fabrice to come and find you."

"Good boy."

It was safer for everyone if Jude stayed far away from the trouble.

Baise took a moment to arrange for a room to return to. It would be readied for the afternoon. He expected little more than a pair of cots with straw mattresses and threadbare blankets.

"Lysander," he greeted again outside with a subtle bow. A raven cawed from the tiles on the opposite house.

"He looks like he knows how to use 'em," Jude observed.
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The man bowed and Lysander returned the gesture with a dip of his head. Dull eyes looked to Jude. He didn’t comment that he did know how to use his blades.

The house is this way.” Lysander said. His walk was brisk as if he were in a hurry to see the horror. Along the small roads there were times when the trio would need to step off to the side as much as possible to let the mules (horses were creatures that belonged to travelers in this village) and whatever they were carrying through.

The melted house wasn’t too far from where the inn was. It was closer on the outskirts than to the village’s center. With the flat ground, it was easy to see. Some parts of it were still intact but the front of it was what had melted the most, the walls and doors dripping into a muddy puddle like rain falling down from eaves.

They could clearly see inside the house, one large room that held the necessities one needed and a few frivolities such as a dresser with a small mirror on it and a small painting of the old couple that had lived here. Nothing inside the house had melted, it was just the outside that had.

Here is the house.” Lysander said, stopping in front of the footpath that led up to it.

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"You see, we will be quite safe with him," Baise whispered to Jude, but loud enough that their young guide would hear.

"Now this is fascinating," Baise said as they reached the house.

Jude started to lean forwards, but Baise blocked his path with an outstretched arm.

"Just a moment now..."

Baise dropped to one knee. Another caw range out from a raven in a nearby tree.

He picked up a small, sharp stone and etched a small pattern into the ground. A simple spell of detection, but the formation was old. Not like the books that Elbion or Vel Anir would describe.

"The magic has played itself out. That doesn't mean it isn't dangerous, but it does mean that we're not going to walk into some secondary part of the curse.

"To be more specific, if the spell has changed part of the floor into an the mouth of a hell beast it might still be there, but we shouldn't be triggering any new magical transformations."

"So still be careful?" Jude summarised.

"Yes, yes that," Baise replied, looking slightly put out at his analogy being reduced so succinctly.
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He craned his head to where he heard the bird. He looked back at Baise. Lysander didn’t say how he found it suspicious that three birds followed him around. Three wasn’t a good number, bad omens and all of that. Normally he wouldn’t have been so superstitious, but in this town with strange things happening, Lysander couldn’t ignore his intuition.

He may not have displayed any emotion on his face, but in his mind he had labeled Baise as a force that could be more trouble than good. Jude, on the other hand, well, Lysander liked him. Succinct was good and at such a young age, there was value in that.

Lysander stepped into the house, trudging on ahead and… felt nothing. Sure enough, Baise was correct. At least in Lysander not melting. He turned around, looking here and then looking there.

Strange that it’s only the front of the house that’s been affected.” He commented. Wouldn’t the melting effect be equal throughout? It looked like it started from the roof and then trickled down.

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"You know sometimes I get so caught up in the little things..."

Baise trailed off and walked back down the path. He stopped and turned back to look at the big picture.

"Good insight. Why would that possibly be the case," he mused out loud.

As Baise turned thoughtful, Jude was hot in Lysander's heels.

"Why would someone want to melt a house?" Jude asked.

Baise crossed his arms over his chest and pondered the same question. Some magic required a line of sight, but Jude's question was rather more pertinent.
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Lysander looked down at Jude.

They didn’t.” Lysander said. “It was a accident. Or they did want to melt it and couldn’t finish it.” Simple solutions but to Lysander, sometimes the truth was far more simple than one would like. “But I could be wrong.” And the chances of that were high. It wasn’t like he knew the Dreaming Man personally.

Lysander went to where Baise was, and gave him a look.

Do you want to spend more time here?” He asked, clearly wanting to move on.

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Lysander was a surprisingly thoughtful young man, Baise decided. A little less terse than he might have expected after their first introductions.

"No, I don't think we can learn much more from the remnants. But it is remarkable to see."

He narrowed his eyes, sifting through memories to try and find if anything matched. Nothing quite did. If it was direct fae magic, it would either be an act of spite or mischief. Not that their kind couldn't exhibit a breath of feelings mirroring the human condition, but with far greater intensity.

A second raven had joined the first. They faced one another and held a brief, chattering discussion.

He couldn't put it past some trickery to gift a dreamer more power than they could control.

"I think..."

He was interrupted by the second raven flapping down to his shoulder.

"Argh Fabrice I..."


Baise held up his arm and the raven hopped down until it could face him.

"I expect this of you Fabrice when you've been told, but Tiberius!" Baise said, casting a glare at the raven in the tree. A meek caw filtered down.

"Well it's done now," Baise bemoaned. "Fabrice, Lysander. Lysander, Fabrice."


"No, surely not so..."


"We have a problem," Baise said to Lysander. "A witch hunter has been summoned. As likely to burn someone for a hint of elvish blood..."

He looked to Jude.

"...or a child with fantastical ideas as they would be to find the source of the problem. We must be quick."