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A Heavy Hammer,  A Sharp Sword
A Book Written Through the Eyes of Cooncarin

Chapter I

I have decided to not only write down the details of my epic adventures of the present, but of my past too. I feel for anybody to understand my current tales, they must understand past ones also. So I guess the best place to start is the beginning.

My family was as normal as they come, (for a half elf family that is) and we did very normal things. My father, a carpenter, and my mother, a seamstress, raised me well. We were a very religious family starting at a very young age. I grew quite interested in these teachings, and furthered my studies when I went to school. The other children mocked me, saying that I was a mutt, or mixed breed. These things hurt me, but my studies kept me happy. I must admit though, that using the abilities that the Elvin part gave me came in handy in case I ever wanted revenge on these children. I remember once, after a particularly strenuous day of being teased, I snuck into one of their houses in the dark and painted his face purple. Even though all of this teasing hurt then, maybe it helped me later on in life, because I feel now I’m a stronger man because of it.

As soon as I was old enough, I entered the seminary. There I learned all the usual things, but what I really wanted to do was be a cleric, a fighter of the lord. I knew it would be practically impossible considering I am a half elf, which meant I could only be a cleric up to a certain level of power. So the chances of the committee allowing me were slim to none. Fortunately for me though, they were short on clerics and gave me the chance I wanted. They even gave me permission to become a fighter that would be allowed to use sharp weapons, if I successfully made it to the highest level of a cleric, I was allowed, as a half elf. I was very excited and studied with the other potential clerics for the rest of my stay at the seminary.

When I was finished I was allowed to leave the seminary and begin my quest of fighting for and serving the lord. I couldn’t go out on my own, for I’d surly be killed, so I found a group of adventurers that let me join them and off I went. It was hard those first years, but it was worth it for now I am Cooncarin Trunks, one of the mightiest clerics around.  

Chapter II

    My first adventure involved an elf named Elvin magicson, a human fighter, a warrior named Urza, a dwarf named Dave, and myself. We were deciding where to go and basically threw darts at a map. We randomly chose one of the dungeons that we had heard of, and it ended up being Dogrums Keep. I knew it would be hard since I was just out of the seminary, and barely knew how to fight. In fact, the only reason they probably allowed me with them was for my basic healing spells. They didn’t do much back then, but were better than nothing. Practically right out of the city gates we were ambushed by wolves. Little did I know these animals would become my mortal enemy for the rest of my life. My life was much shorter than I expected it to be though and almost as soon as the battle started I was out and gone. I was still clinging on to life when it was stolen from me by a set of wolf’s teeth. Luckily the Gods had mercy on me this day. Before I could even see the heavenly gates, I was yanked back, and forced into my body again. I suppose they had bigger things planned for me, and getting eaten by a wolf wasn’t in the plan.

    The rest of the trip was an easy ride in comparison, which is very odd. The wolves should have had been the easiest battle, but they weren’t. We took on displacer beasts, and bears with out any problems nearly as big as the wolves caused. We arrived to Dogrums Keep early in the morning, but since my spells for the day had already been used, we decided to stay the night right outside the door. This probably wasn’t the smartest idea since a group of elves burst out the door in the middle of the night, with some orcs close behind them. We were forced out of bed and began the fight in our skimpiest. I was out of the battle pretty fast, since I was no great fighter, and even worse without my armor on. The rest of the group did fine on their own though, and we were back to sleep in no time. The next morning we decided we were in no shape to take on Dogrums so off we went back to Givemea. The trip home was an easy enough one, with basically nothing exciting to happen. At Givemea, I decided to find a job to keep me alive, money wise, in-between adventuring. I found the local church and tried to work there, but unfortunately clerics must live on their own, without much church interference. So I got a job that involved a hobby of mine. I decided to work on ships in the shipyard. Now I would just have to wait until my next adventure began.

Chapter III

    Months later, on a beautiful summer day, a horrible, horrible thing happened to me. It started out normally I guess, just me and my group out adventuring again. This would be my 4th or 5th time out or so, and I was hoping nothing to exciting would happen. Sadly, I was terribly wrong. The only two people that matter, that were with, were Urza (whom I spoke of earlier) and a young Elvin woman named Arwin. At first it was one of the best adventures to happen to me so far. Easy enough battles for a beginning cleric, and Arwin and I were getting along nicely. So nicely in fact that after two days we decided to wed once we arrived back to Givemea. A very foolish and rash decision made right on the spot. Well the adventure became boring enough, and we headed home. I know what you’re thinking now, “You said something horrible happened!” Well that was just the first part of the adventure/tragedy. No less than two weeks later, we were invited by the same group out again to fix something we had apparently disturbed. While we were out on the first adventure in the middle of the woods, somebody, or should I say something, saw us kill a vampire. Well now we were practically forced to go to a dungeon and confront him. We didn’t know who he was, but we weren’t really worried. We made it to the dungeon fairly fast, with out any problems. But the trouble started as soon as we entered the door. First it was displacer beasts, than a magical gate, and to finish it off, a skeleton warrior. I almost died in every fight, but the luck of the gods were with me that day. Not for long though, because next we would fight zombies. Not knowing much about zombies, and wanting experience, I attacked head on. This wasn’t the best idea because I was instantly poisoned and put unconscious after one hit. I didn’t know it then, but I was as close to dying, without actually dying, as ever. We were saved by another group of elves, but just barely. They were killed in the heroic act, and put on display in front of us, on a huge stage. What I have just told you, and for the next few minutes are all parts of the story I had to hear from others that witnessed it themselves because I was unconscious during this time. A man named Zombire apparently came out of the darkness and put the last barely conscious friend down under. For the next minute or two nobody actually knows what happened, because only Zombire was awake to see it all. I was the first to stir about, and wake up. In no fighting condition Zombire approached me without fear and asked me a few questions. He asked me strangely enough if I knew a man… a man named Joe Boxer. “Well of course I know of him,” I replied “I mean, who hasn’t? Although I don’t know him personally of course, just stories.” Zombire didn’t like this at all and yelled at me to give Joe this message, “Tell Joe to come to me, or all hell will break loose on Givemea!” I coward in fear at this statement, wondering who would ever challenge the great Joe Boxer, knowing perfectly well how strong he was. At this instant though, before I could make any more remarks, Zombire turned into a bat and flew into the darkness above. I woke the rest of the group up, and cared for them during the night. The next morning we were attacked by some gargoyle like creatures, but we had no real problem with them. We made the trip home very slowly, with many quick glances behind us, to make sure nothing was there. We made it home all right, warned Joe of the news, and I must say that even he looked a little worried.

    Fortunately it seems that everything made it out all right. Givemea was never destroyed, and I never heard of Zombire again. I assume Joe took care of him, even though I never heard it to be a fact. So I guess, there is still a chance Zombire is still out there, plotting against Joe. (But I doubt it)

Chapter IV

    Now for perhaps my biggest and most important quest I helped partake in. The rescue of a famous fuzzite, Meeko. Most people that would be interested in reading this have already heard this tale before, but not through Cooncarin’s eyes. There’s no use just talking about it, without telling the full story in detail. Though, I must tell you although I gained gold, I lost the love of my life.

    I was with Urza again, my wife Arwin, and two much less important fighters. We had originally planned to go to a dungeon for adventure, but we got much more than we had bargained for. The name was the entertainment center, but the game wasn’t very fun. What we found when we entered was the most disgusting things I have ever seen. The floor was covered with blood, mixed with feces. Not only did it look horrible, it smelled worse. After just trying to make it through two rooms, we found Meeko, the one creature we never thought we would have to help. But there he was chained to the ground, underneath a box, screaming for help. We got the box off easily enough, but the chains were a little tougher. Meeko seemed weak, and didn’t know how to break the chains. We tried everything, when I thought of something better. Urza was about to use his enormous strength and his magical sword when I yelled, “Stop!” I told him that if he figured magic and strength would break it, why not use my spiritual hammer.
    “It’s magical, and believe me, it’s strong enough,” I explained.
   This was ok with him, since he wasn’t really into taking the chance of breaking his sword.  As soon as my spiritual hammer hit the chains they broke open with an enormous explosion. Arwin was standing a bit to close, and got his pretty badly. She was ok though, and would feel better once we arrived back home. She would never get the chance though since as soon as Meeko was free a not so happy creature attacked. While it floated in the air, with a big evil eye in the center of it’s tentacle filled body, it scared us all. Battle ensued and we came out victorious!
   The trade off unfortunately was the loss of my wife Ariwn’s life. She died heroically, fighting to save Meeko. After the fight Meeko teleported us to a tunnel connected to a gigantic cave. Inside the cave there was jewels covering the walls and ceiling. We all got to pick one jewel, and then from those the group had to pick only one to keep. We decided to keep one that was rainbow covered and seemed very valuable. None of the jewelers in Givemea could afford to buy it, so we were very happy when the king was willing to see us. He offered the group 120,000 gold for the beautiful gem. We thought this wasn’t quite enough, so he also threw in one magic item for each of us. I took a plus one lucern hammer, which I still use today. We split up the gold, and headed home.

    Back at the house I spread Arwin’s ashes, and said my goodbyes. Very sadly for a cleric, I got over her pretty fast. I was back out flirting in no time, which may seem kind of selfish. But in self-defense the marriage probably never should have happened in the first place. We met quickly, and married quicker. We probably would have broken up anyway. Believe me though, I was still very sad for a couple of days. This ends the quest to save Meeko, and my biggest payoff ever, now or in the future I’m sure.

Chapter V
    Instead of describing another one of my epic adventures of heroism and courage, I have decided to dedicate this chapter of my book to my daily life in Givemea. Just because I won’t go out and save the world, or anybody more important than an eight-year-old boy, doesn’t make it unimportant. It just makes the story part of it a little more boring. But I’m going ahead and writing it anyways.

    Usually I’ll wake up very early in the morning to begin work on my own personal ship, “The C Double O”. After being a shipwright for many years, I had decided a while back that I deserved my own ship. The building of the ship is taking a while, but I hope to be completed in the next few years or so. I only put a few gold at a time into the building of it, so I don’t expect to be done anytime soon, as I said earlier. After working on my ship for about an hour, I continue working on other peoples boats, until the day is done. Nothing but the usual hammering, and pounding here, except on rare occasions when something exciting happens. I remember once when I was working when I heard the screams of a terrified mother, yelling like she had just lost her child. I ran to hear, and my guess was very close to being right. Apparently her son had fallen down a pretty deep well, and had hurt himself so he wasn’t able to climb up. Without a second to loose, a quickly summoned up a light spell to see what was going on down there. The boys’ screaming was with very good reason, for he had broken his leg. At this point I climbed down the rope and started casting one of my healing spells. I knew this wouldn’t heal the broken leg completely, but at least it would help with the pain and agony. At least enough for the child to hold onto me as we climbed. After escaping the well I told the mother to head to the church, and beg for help. I gave them some gold to help with the payments the church would surely charge.

    Well if it’s a normal day, after work I would just head home an pray, instead of saving someone’s life, but everything I do to help, makes me feel better inside. Back at home, I feed my cat tiger and try to continue and train him so that I won’t be forced to use my magic to have to tell him what to do. He may not be good for fighting, but when it comes to keeping the mice away he’s one of the best. When I’m done with my usual business at home, and if there’s still a little time left in the day, I head to my friend Lucky Luck’s house and share in my duties of taking care of our semi-adopted son, Stir. Now that I’ve brought up the fact that he’s semi-adopted, you’re probably wondering how me and another man came upon this awkward situation. Another story for another time though, perhaps in the next chapter. Well Lucky and me work hard to train him already. Though he’s only five he is very well adapted with a knife in his hands because of the hard training that only living on the streets will give you. Mostly though, we are trying to teach him how to live like a normal person inside of a house.

    After leaving Lucky’s house, I head home, say one last prayer, then go to sleep. The next morning I begin the entire process over again, unless it’s Sunday. In which case I dedicate practically the whole day to prayer and practice of my spells. Thus ends my daily life routine, which I’m sure is probably much more exciting than yours.

Chapter VI

    Now enters the biggest change in a young clerics life. The time when he must stop leveling as a cleric. Being a half-elf, I have many restrictions compared to that of a normal human. One of these restrictions is the amount of time and experience I can be a cleric. After working so hard, to be as good of a cleric as I could be, the Gods still punished me in a way no human could expect. I was forced to stop working as a cleric, and begin something new. Being my options were so limited I chose to become a fighter as well as a cleric. I put down my hammer temporarily and drew a mighty blade in its stead. I never stopped being a cleric, but just became something more. I would still fight in the name of god, just with a different style. One great thing that came of this change was the fact that I was now allowed to use sharp weapons and I seemed to have more luck when it came to attacking. The first few levels of experience of a fighter came very easily to me since I was already such a powerful cleric. Even to this day, when I am both equal in fighter and cleric abilities, I see myself as a cleric/fighter, and not the other way around. The church wasn’t especially happy with my decision, and would have preferred me to just live as monk for the rest of my life, but I couldn’t stop adventuring now, after just getting a taste of the excitement. Like I mentioned earlier, it probably took me half of the time to get to were I am today as a fighter compared to cleric, but I would have worked three times as long to stay in the complete work of the gods. I have learned to except this though and have even started to like the way fighters act and behave.
    My fighting peers have accepted me quickly since they needed a cleric to heal, and a fighter to fight, and I was a solution to both. My cleric friends also accepted this change easily since they are all such good friends of mine. So now I must just convince the church to accept me wholly and I will have no problems.

Chapter VII

    It is now time to speak of one of my greatest accomplishments in my young life. The Ziatic Guild. While not everyone knows about, or cares about it, the Ziatic Guild is one of the most important things to my fellow members and me. The idea originally came to me when I saw some of my more experienced adventurer friends sharing some of their more precious equipment with each other. They never asked or paid for these items, just simply borrowed them and put them back. I figured why couldn’t a group be formed around this idea, and also include a few more regulations to make it more of an elite group, rather than just friends sharing with friends. While Guild Membership isn’t very high, it’s just perfect for what we need. We always help each other out when in need, and never forget a fellow Ziatic Member. Simply joining makes you feel more important than ever before, and you get a newfound feeling from life. Never has anyone regretted joining The Guild. We are currently in the process of creating a Guild Hall, where all of our shared funds will be kept, and higher ranked Guild Members will stay. Being the Ziatic Master, I too, of course will live there. But the main idea of The Guild isn’t about rank or level, but about sharing and working together for a better Guild.

    And now I end this story the only way I know how, with a saying that has kept me going through every tough and rough time in life…
                            …Never give up, never surrender.

 The End