1. Lessons of Power
2. Love is
3. White Knights, Black Knights
6. The Winds of Fate
7. The Lesson of Ab'Dendriel
8. A True Story of Love and Betrayal..
9. Haunting Memories
10. The Wise Old Elf
Lessons of Power
"There have been many who seek power in many, many different ways. It may be the power of spirt and it may the power of strength. Everyone trys to gain some sort of power in there life and its not bad to do so, its the way they gain it. Some my try the evil and cold hearted way and some may try the wise and less taken road. To each his own and to all a evil and crul fait may ley before them. We can learn from the mistakes of the past and try to correct our own selfish ways, but for most they fail and power once again takes there soul. Now you my ask what can I do to keep myself from letting power control and take me over. The is simple to say but not to obay. So if you really wish to hear then follow this lesson to the end, But if you think that what I am saying is untrue then continue your path and do not say I diden't try to warn you. For it will be your fault and not mine. The first lesson or task what ever you wish to call it, is that you must stay pure and untainted by greed. For greed is the most ominous and the most commen way of down fall. Power and greed go hand in hand and there for you must stay vigilant toward its wicked, vile powers. It may try to tempt you toward it, but you should never give into it. For if you do then your quest for power will shortly end.
The seconed is simple and one that everyone trys to do, but no one ever does to the full, it is kind heartedness. The few that try almost always fail and in doing so unravel thier own path of glory leaveing them in the dust waiting for another to help. There is a easy way to follow this rule however, it is always remember that ones you have help may help you in your life.
The third and the wisest one is that the only way to gain power is to become wise through it. If you ever reach and pass this lesson then you will know one true thing that will haunt you all you life. Simply because to have any power you must have non. You must help others showing that you are on the same level. You must fight a good fight and embrace everything that may unravel you very being, showing that you your self are open to down fall and pain.
Now you may say then why did i read this, If power is unobtainable then why try to follow these rules. The reason is simple by reading this you learned and became wiser and maybe that in its self is true power. The answer I leave to you, but heed my words that you have learned today or your own down fall might come shortly."
In the petals of the poppies as they fall on Flanders fields,
And the hearts of congregations dwells the mighty power it wields.
From the eyes of little children to the voices of the old
It comes and goes, but never dies, and can't be bought or sold.
It counts no class or standing, or our economic state;
It knows no social etiquette, yet may decide our fate.
It can make a wise man foolish, quite unable to respond;
It can humble kings and princes, yet exalt a vagabond.
It's the tie that binds our spirits . . . it's the force that drives us on.
It heals us when it touches but it hurts us when it's gone.
And there are those who've died for it, and others who have cried
Because it came so fleetingly . . . before it was denied.
But without it all would perish and be meaningless and void
It's a gift to all humanity . . . a song to be enjoyed.
It's the core of our existence, it's the reason for our birth;
It abides through all eternity, beyond our time on earth.
It knows no fear or malice, asking just that we believe;
And blessed is the soul that gives . . . it shall the more receive.
It has no worth in rubies, or in silver, or in gold,
Yet it lives today as surely as in miracles of old.
When I was a young boy, I once had a book;
Through bright coloured pages and pictures I'd look.
There were white knights and black knights and kings and princesses
And ladies at court in their long flowing dresses.
There were vagabonds mingled with merchants and traders,
And castles assaulted by hooded invaders.
With ramparts and moats that encircled great walls,
And boys stealing apples from market place stalls.
That the white knights were good, and the black knights were bad
Was the total extent of the knowledge I had.
In each duel they fought, I was thrilled to the core;
For the fate of the black knight was certain and sure.
What a wonderful feeling to think, if I stood
On the side of the bold and the true and the good
And swore my allegiance to country and king,
I'd be safe from the threat any black knight could bring.
Now the years have passed on, and my rose coloured vision
Is blurred and obscured by the sword of division.
So through a glass darkly, and try as I may,
I see all the knights in a dim shade of grey.
I still see the vagabonds, traders and thieves,
(Though often the difference eludes and deceives.)
Whilst kings and princesses still hide behind walls
Now hooded invaders transpose to house calls.
But all who have fought and all who have died
With banners of courage and truth at their side,
Have seen in past glories their stories predicted
As scenes from my childhood pictures depicted.
The bright shield of honour upholds its ideals
And gallantry spawns on its moral appeals.
Have you not heard his voice in the depths of your heart?
The white knight of valour . . . he still plays his part.
. . . One snowflake drifting down a well, a well without waters, without walls, without bottom, without top. Now take away the snowflake and consider the drifting. . . .
After a timeless time, the voice comes once again:
"Do you know the difference between life and death?"
"'I' am life." "Whatever you give or take away, if 'I' remain it is life."
"Sleep," says the voice, and there is nothing to hear him, there in the House of the Dead.
"Were you dead?" asks the voice.
"No. I was sleeping."
"What is the difference?"
" 'I' was still there, although I did not know it."
"Suppose I had never awakened you?"
"That, I suppose, would be death."
"Death? If I did not choose to exercise my power to awaken you? Even though the power was ever present, and 'you' potential and available for that same ever?"
"If this thing were not done, if I remained forever only potential, then this would be death."
"A moment ago you said that sleep and death were two different things. Is it that the period of time involved makes a difference?"
"No. It is a matter of existence. After sleep there comes wakefulness, and the life is still present. When I exist, I know it. When I do not, I know nothing."
"Life, then, is nothing?"
"Life, then, is existing? Like these dead?"
"No. it is kowing you exist, at least some of the time."
"Of what is this a process?"
"I," says Niall.
"And what is 'I'? Who are you?"
"I am Niall."
"I only named you a short while ago! What were you before that?"
"No! Alive!" cries Niall.
"Do not raise your voice within my halls," says the voice. "You do not know the difference between existing and not existing, yet you presume to argue with me concerning life and death! Now I shall not ask you, I shall tell you. I shall tell you of life and death. "There is too much life and there is not enough life," he begins, " and the same goes for death. Now I shall throw away paradoxes.
"Some worlds have too much life," he says. "Life---crawling, pullulating, fecundating, smothering itself--- worlds too clement, too full of the sciences which keep men alive---worlds which would drown themselves in their own semen, worlds which would pack all of their lands with crowds of big-bellied women---and so go down to death beneath the weight of their own fruitfulness. Then there are worlds which grind life like grain. Life is badly needed in the worst of these. It can be a deadly blessing on the best. When I say that life is needed or not needed in certain places, I am not speaking of two different things, but of the same thing.
"It is life and it is death. It is the greatest blessing and the greatest curse in the universe. You do not have to understand it, Niall. Your comprehension or your lack of it, your approval or your disapproval, will in no way alter its operation."
Thus, I awoke in the House of the Dead, and from there I came to this pixilated universe known as Tibia. Men may begin and end in many ways. Some may start as machines and gain their humanity slowly. Others may end as machines, losing their humanity by pieces as they live. That which is lost may always be regained. That which is gained may always be lost. ---Am I a man or imagination encoded in light and sound?
I do not know.
What though a thousand enemies propose
To slay me,
With thee my loving friend, how shall my foes
This is my hope of life, to hold thee nigh
Absent, it is my constant fear that I
At one point, I thought to become a sorceror skilled in destructive magics. No longer. I remain in Rookgaard to show beginners there is more to life in Tibia than pushing, looting, and spamming.
Weapons, food, aid, I have given to the struggling beginners. One brave fellow fell to an orc spearman. I pushed his body back to the town when it was snatched and looted by Kelemvorr. He would not listen to persuasion. Time passed and I chanced upon him while I was in another body in Edron. A thief still he was. Others killed him over and over again for his actions. Not all can hear the call.
What manner of man is there
That shall the lonely heart befriend,
That shall the desolate attend?
Khizer, the heavenly guide,
he of the footfall sanctified,
Perchance he cometh, and shall bring
In purpose deep and mercy wide
An end of all my wayfaring.
The winds of fate roll along,
Carrying every right and wrong.
Through the times it sees much,
Evil, hope, it has a touch.
All goes along, nothing can escape,
Or so it seems, from the winds of fate.
Many try to change what fate,
Will bring for them that very date.
Making different choices, some out of rush,
Then end up embarassed, with a bright blush.
Is it possible to change your fate?
Once decided, can you only wait?
You try and try, different ways,
Yet you may fail or gain in those days.
But think about it, did fate decide?
Did fate say "Try this and that on the side."
Did fate really have an effect?
Could you alter, change, the outcome for best?
Most likely not, but you have tried,
And so the Winds of Fate preside.
But do not cease, keep up your diligence,
For one day, you may beat Fate's intelligence.
I tell you this, for I too try,
For that one day when mine life I pry.
Fate can be cruel, but do not doubt,
Keep trying, influencing, changing about.
For one day Fate, will lose its power,
And you shall prevail, even if an hour.
It will be yours, for no other
Unless they too, change Fate's cover.
Is it possible to really change Fate?
Through time and diligence, maybe so one day.
And when you find that one certain way,
Tell me, so I too, may rejoice over Fate.
Years have passed since I promised to write The Lesson of Ab'Dendriel. Yet today I have decided to set myself to the task. It has been a long day, and in some ways a sad and difficult one. For today, I have learned the lesson of Ab'Dendriel again. Many years ago, when I found Ab'Dendriel, the city of the elves, I also met my Master Lliannan the Bard and my good friend Kaladon, Archdruid of the Black-Forest. I was becoming quite fond of my cousin Ygrane, though we did not know of our relationship at the time. Months passed and I was asked to serve on the Elven Council. These were exciting days, and it was the time when I learned most about the politics of groups, and the delicate line one walks with power. Not that we were so powerful. We only sought to bring elven values to the elven town.
Is all Celebnoli know, it is difficult to have a peaceful society in a world as violent and bloody as Tibia. So we made laws, and created the Guardians to enforce them. There was a similar governing body in Kazordoon which had created the IRT (Imperial Response Troop) to enforce their laws. From this point the histories of the two cities went widely separate.
Perhaps the dwarves were more suited to a government with laws than those who were attracted to elventown. Or, as other historians have speculated, it may have been the unique geography of Kazordoon that allowed the IRT to protect the city and enforce its laws. In any case, whereas Kazordoon took a relatively peaceful path from then until today, Ab'Dendriel degenerated into a terrible battle on two fronts: the Guardians fighting the law-breakers, and law-breakers and many citizens alike fighting the Guardians and the Council. The Guardians themselves degenerated in to an angry, yelling mob, not much different from the outlaws they were supposed to be evicting.
In the last days before I resigned from the Council, our very own Duque was serving as Commander of the Guardians of Ab'Dendriel. He made a valiant attempt to bring about order and loyalty to Council and Elven Law. Yet his human heart was broken when he discovered he was hated not only by the outlaws, but the citizens and the Guardians themselves. And, if I am honest, there is one more point to be drawn before I record here my conclusion. The Council itself became an absentee body of ghosts, almost never seen in the city they had sword to protect and serve. For many months, Ygrane and I were the only Council members speaking to each other on a daily basis, trying to sort out the difficulties and manage the problems of the city. (I do not blame the ones above me in the Council, for I know they must have been called away by important matters. Nevertheless, they were absent, leaving Ygrane and I to struggle along as best we could.) Citizens complained visciously about this absent Council with its "unjust laws". And where did they think they got the authority to put something like this over on the Ab'Dendriel citizens?
Where, indeed? And where did we go wrong? The only thing we were trying to "put over" on the city was peace, love, and respect for certain ancient elven ideals. In fact, it was the dream of the Celeb-nol, even before the guild was born in Tibia.
My conclusion is that you can not run a city, create a government, or even give a simple gift if those "above" you are absent or do not care, and if those "below" you hate and resent the fact that you exist. So Ygrane and I retired from the Council. Duque left the Guardians. And I began to dream of the guild that now is the Celebnoli.
Today, I sat with a dwarf in Tibia, drinking a cup of wine and sharing tales and reflections about difficult times, from long ago, and now. He also is a Gamemaster. I had gotten a difficult communication from the Constructors (*see below) that I was an idealist , trying to make the Tibian community into something to match my own desires. The Constructor who told me this was not too happy with me.
Nor, I have realized for some time, are so many of the Tibians in the Antican community too happy with me. Or perhaps it is just that the ones who speak the loudest are the ones who are most unhappy. In any case, I learned the lesson of Ab'Dendriel again: You cannot give a gift if those above you are absent, or do not care,and those below you hate and resent the fact that you exist.
And I found myself listening to the wisdom of this old dwarf as he told me, "We are alone. The Constructors do not often have the same dreams and visions that you and I share. Tibia will certainly, someday, change. But not today. And not in the next time," which, for a dwarf, as an elf, means a period of unimaginable years.
I sat in silence for a time, enjoying his companionship, glad to be in the company of one who was not formally a Celebnol, yet shared with me the dream. After a time, he asked me what I would do.
I'm going home," I told him. "To my Celeb-nol brothers and sisters. Too long have I stayed away, fighting for a cause - again - that is not wanted on the ground I was fighting for." This time it was not a city, but a world. Yet the lesson was the same. So the Old One picked up his staff and made his way back home. To the Celebnoli, where the ancient gifts are given and received, by and amongst those who care for the ancient Celeb way.
I will not leave you again.
The CIP team. Those who have built the worlds.
Never again will I call them gods.
My fingers brushed lightly against the silk of that crimson tapestry, newly hung by my companion. A soft smile offered, silently thanking him once more for braving the war ravished lands. Many would not have bothered to drop everything and risk their life to help push a trunk from the hands of a thief. I knew most would not prevent themselves from being able to run to safety in such a time, but he had.
"For a second, I thought you were going to kill that man..."
"I maybe should." His words invaded my ears with a certain hallow ring as my attention was drawn past the tapestry. My stare settled on the cobblestone streets, smeared with the life of innocents and footsteps of blood that led to my front door.
That window was immediately lifted, and my head peeking out as I took in slowly the white garb of my visitor. He said nothing, simply staring at me expectantly. I knew what he wanted, and my heart wrenched at the very thought. A sideways glance given to my companion, my best friend. His hair disheveled, that dark clothing torn, faint traces of sweat popping along his forehead as he rotated a dresser to the new spot I had dictated earlier.
Tormented by thought, I twisted the white material of my clothing within my hands as I tried to think of a plan. There was only one way out, the path that would send him to potential death. I smiled nervously, for he had not yet noticed. My eyes closed for a long moment before I leaned out the window and spoke, "He isn't going to come out, you know..."
The visitor would continue to stare intensely at me, a tight smile crossing his lips. A smile I knew to be deadly. "Why not?"
My companion whirled around quickly at the words, rushing to my side to see who I spoke to. His hand slipped into my own, squeezing and transferring his own strength to me. As always, when I needed him, he was there without question. I began to feel braver and continued, "He is my guest, and while you stalk outside my home like a predator, you can be sure he is not going out there."
"I can give him problems?" A faint whisper of words into my ear, asked by my companion as his hand slid from mine, and he inched closer to the door. I shook my head slightly, not wanting trouble to begin on this day blessed with peace thus far.
The visitor stood outside still, his hand over his blade for when I would come to my senses and cast this 'enemy' from my home. His next words uttered slammed into my chest as if he had used that blade on me. "This is supporting the Dark Side."
My breath had been knocked away, and I felt myself tremble. For weeks I had given blood, sweat, tears, and pieces of my heart and soul to this cause. I had stood as close to battle as I was allowed. I spent many a night, coming home drenched in the blood of fallen and wounded soldiers whose very lives stood in the balance of whether I was able to heal them quickly enough. I had collapsed from physical exhaustion from creating the very magic that helped them to survive every moment. I lead others to safety and kept them protected at all times. I gave my life to this cause, and with one moment, it seemed for nothing as it was all forgetten, and I stood accused.
My hands clenched at the window sill, turning as white as the gown I wore as the status symbol for my beliefs. My mind and heart began to clash internally, knowing that in some ways his words were true. I was going against everything I had been taught. I was housing the 'enemy' and not turning him over immediately to my warriors.
My personal war raged within my head as I spoke harshly, "You are right. I am supporting them then." How angry I was at that moment, to be stared at with such eyes of betrayal. To be accused without asking, without words. My companion, my savior, he sensed my turmoil and stepped out the front door. My eyes clenched shut, not wanting to see the outcome of him once more sacrificing himself for me. For me!
It was then my awakening came. I knew the truth, my own truth. I would stand for what I believed in. I would fight for what I believed in. I would continue to give every piece of my soul to my cause. A time in my life where my every action would betray someone important to me. Potential to destroy my love, my family, my guild, my life.. Where it had potential to destroy every dream I had worked so hard for and finally achieved. I would throw it on the ground if I had to. I would, as other would describe it, betray everything to stand proudly beside my companion because sometimes you have to follow your heart, and I knew I had made the right choice.
This was found here.
Important Note: I take no credit in the writing of the poem used in the below story. It was sent to me years ago by a friend who stumbled across it and felt it described Valianna perfectly.
I sat quietly in my new home surrounded by the buzzing of wasps that fluttered carelessly in the jungle. I had imported a cushioned-chair from the nearby desert, unable to relax fully in the specialized ones made of elephant tusks. My attention was focused intently on the window as a lone bug crawled beneath it, with my fingers absently stroking along the parchment that rested within my lap.
The parchment had arrived earlier in the day, but I was afraid to open it. I recognized the seal stamped so carelessly beneath the faded ribbon that delicately held it together. I knew then just how far it had traveled to reach me. A ghost from the past had sent it. Someone I managed to never forget, no matter how hard I tried.
"Ele nin?" The ancient dark elf language rolled off my tongue in a whisper. It caught me by surprise. I still wasn't used to knowing the language even though it had been 64 years since I had awoken in this body. I closed my eyes, forcing myself to repeat the words in Common. Why now?
I stood up suddenly, the parchment dropping to my feet. I turned slightly to my right, my gaze falling on the mirror that I hung as a daily reminder. I stared intently at myself, cursing the day I had cast the spell that brought me here. What had running got me? I had to of been running. I never would have cast such a spell before if I had been thinking clearly. But I had just lost him. And I couldn't live like that anymore. The losses kept piling up.
With a weary sigh, I reached down to retrieve the parchment, carefully sliding off the ribbon. My fingertips traced slowly over the seal, each stroke allowing an old memory to become a new wound. "Usstan orn'la inbal tois whol dos. Wun natha i'dol, Usstan xunus el whol dos..." I brushed an absent tear from my cheek as the words replayed in my head, and I again forced myself to speak in whispered Common. I would have died for you. In a way, I did die for you.
The parchment opened easily for me, my eyes hungrily taking in the words scrawled in familiar script. It was his way of reminding me. His way of being there with me once more. He had taken the words of an old poem and twisted them as if he were speaking to me. I felt as if he were standing behind me, whispering the words into my ear...
"You are the moon on a winter night.
You are the fleeting memory of candlelight.
You are the frost that covers the morning in white.
You are alone as a dove when it takes flight.
Mine were the arms which held you tight.
You are the glacier that kills the earth.
You are an existence of no worth.
You are the loneliness in my tear.
You are the cause of all my fear.
You are the whispers I never hear.
You are all I once held dear.
You are the shiver running up my spine.
You are the one who I once called mine.
Feelings change and we leave things behind.
You are the breath on my neck.
You are the chill upon my skin.
You are the midnight wind.
You are the blackest pearl in the sea.
You are all no one wanted to be.
You are cruel because you are lost.
You are the words used to cut me down.
You are the thought in my head when I frown.
You are the anger when I am mad.
You are the nails that claw my back.
You are the control that I lack.
You are the story never told.
You are me.
You are cold."
I whirled suddenly as if I expected him to be standing there. My hands trembled as I finished the poem and softly spoke the remaining words written aloud. "My only love sprung from my only hate. You would have suffered so I felt no pain. You would have died for me. I waited for you. Why didn't you wait for me?" His words were sharper than any knife that had ever pierced my skin.
I quickly grabbed a red rune from the dresser closest to the door, stepping out and shattering it upon the ground. A glorious flame arose, and I stood staring at it for a long moment. I held the parchment over the flame, mumbling quietly to myself. "For twenty one years I lived with my mind and body shattered. My heart and soul broken beyond repair." I went back indoors, placing the parchment upon a beautifully carved table. "Not a day goes by that I do not remember. I have never forgotten you, my love."
This was found here.