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The Curse of Quamaire


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Women priestesses stood in a row before the statues, beautiful young or mature, bare from the waist up with exposed skin, breasts, shoulders covered with soft glistening oils. The oiled skin glittered more so on those closer to the the light of the big brass fire-bowls and lamps.


The bare breasted high priestess, she was of light red-brown skin and black hair as many native people were, bowed before the statue of the island's Fertility Goddess. It was a brief bow and she placed there a female baby child.


As she stood the woman began to chant softly and the other priestesses joined in. The soft, powerful, melodious chanting filled the temple chamber with ease, though it was very large, and flowed out of it into great hallways, antechambers and other chambers.


Incense torches burned, filling the air only lightly with smoke and heavily with the fragrance of traditional fire herbs.


Dancers danced being young men, and women, dressed only in loin-cloths. Their oiled skin also glistened. Players drummed on hand-drums and others blew on wooden panpipes. The dancers were attractive, slimly muscular, and did not dance with much modesty as they undulated and whirled, leapt and made other traditional motions.


Amazingly enough the baby girl slept peacefully, dreaming quiet dreams of amazing visions.


The baby would one day be the new Priestess-Queen of the Quamaire Islands, being three big, eight smaller and many even smaller islands. The temple was on an island of its own though, being mostly underground, perhaps it would be better to say it was in the island.


The Quamaire Islands were eastwards of the supercontinent of Tamriel but only a tiny minority of Tamriellans knew that it existed and only a minority of those knew much about the exotic realm. This was no accident!


A gentle tremor ran through the chamber but it was a sharp reminder to all there, but the baby, that the religious ceremonies had to be completed to appease the Volcano Gods and to strengthen the realm's link with the Great Goddess so that she could more easily constrain those same gods.

Edited by Maharg67
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  • 3 weeks later...



The old, yet youthful looking, woman threw some bones and small glowing crystals onto the cave ground in front of her. They landed in the very center of a bizarre triple circle, and five sided star, pattern. The bones flared briefly and were turned to bone dust. Strange symbols formed out of the bone dust as if a hidden finger was shifting the substance to form the signs. They were easy for the woman to read.


She wore nothing but a loin-cloth and a belt with pouches along with a string-bag hanging at her chest. The cave chamber was quite large and most of it was in shadows. Lamps were burning being pools of oil inside great big troll skulls.


AvastiaTye examined the symbols with a soft frown of frustration and irritation. She spoke to the 'other' hidden in the shadows. "Why is the future so much obscured from my attempts at scrying?"


The old, very old, sounding voice came crackling from the dark. "If I knew the answer to that question, grand-daughter, than I would be far wiser, more powerful and learned than I am now. I can only guess that it is because we are at a vital junction of destiny, a changing point in history, a moment of both choice and fate."


TeditiTye was hidden in the shadows for she looked gruesomely ugly. Death had been unnaturally suspended, for her, but the price had been a very high one. Despite that it was obvious to her, and those around her, that she was dying and would be dead in a couple of months at most. She would be sadly missed as a beloved one and as an adviser but she would also cease to feel the pain of her unnatural suspension of life. Why had she made the choice she had; she had never spoken of it but had promised to do so before she did die.


"A baby boy!" AvastiaTye frowned. "The symbol there could be taken to mean a baby boy and that, other symbol, could be taken to mean Tamriel."


TeditiTye responded with some tone of excitement, which meant that she was quite excited. "Yes, the boy that must be found, who must marry the Priestess-Queen one day and then, perhaps, be sacrificed."


"Human sacrifice is no longer favored by the majority of our people and who can blame them? It drew darkness to our islands and caused the start of the Curse! Or at least that is what many of our people have come to believe." The younger woman, who was quite old despite her appearance, spoke in a thoughtful tone. "The symbol there could mean Cyrodiil. That one there could be the Imperial City. That one, there, could indicate a bookshop of sorts or perhaps a artifact shop. If our people, in Tamriel, are to start seeking the baby boy then they could begin at the Imperial City of those foolish mortals."


The other woman spoke. "Do not underestimate the mortals of Tamriel and remember that a Dragonborn Emperor rules them. Our people, in Tamriel, must be careful and we will need to send them what resources that we can spare."


AvastiaTye only nodded in acceptance of the advise.

Edited by Maharg67
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  • 2 weeks later...



News of the birth of a new daughter, the new Priestess-Queen, went through out the Quamaire Islands with impressive, but not surprising, speed. Everybody wanted to know what was going on and magic, along with clever non magical ways, made sure that information went quickly to where it was wanted.


Warrior-Lord CaembraZiv stood impressive in enhanced leather armor, flexible but very tough though light. Apart from a magical steel bladed longsword he had a more traditional magical war-club and a long crystal-tipped battle-staff of ancient exotic wood. The sword had been bought in Tamriel by secret agents using false identities. Many goods were obtained this way and smuggled to the Quamaire Islands.


Despite that most folks considered CaembraZiv to be little more than a semi-retired Warrior-Lord, the hero who had crushed the dark rebellion of the Tooze Dynasty and destroyed the cannibal-pirates of the Black Channel, in truth he was very active. His efforts had become focused on intelligence and counter intelligence work. He had proven to be brilliant at both and had set up a very efficient network of passive observers, active secret agents and various other kinds of specialists. Some of those specializations were not ones he either liked to use too often or even to think about too often.


From where he stood, high on the battlements of a wall overlooking the harbor of the capital city, he could see many fine sail-ships and more exotic looking magical craft. In the distance, across the big harbor, was a smaller port city that was a vague area only. The city was ZenrenQua and was the newer capital; the city in the distance was long abandoned and sealed up; it was the dreaded ruins of QuezaQua, the former capital city of the once dreaded Tooze Kingdom. With the destruction of the Tooze Kingdom the islands had been united under the banner of the new Kingdom but, as proven by the later Tooze Rebellion, the Tooze had not ceased to be a threat.


The woman came up beside him, elegantly beautiful in her translucent silken robes, and stood beside him. The robes were provocative and meant to be so as was the fact she had a bare right breast with out covering body paint or tattoos. Her pale brown skin contrasted sharply with her black hair and dark brown eyes.


She smiled as she, openly, played the part of being his concubine. "The newly born princess is very healthy and demanding of milk from her mother's breasts. Her mother is also very well. The Priest-King has yet to see the new child and there is talk of allowing the madman to see her through bars."


He nodded. "Under customary laws he can not be denied but all safeguards must be carried out, of course. Rangers have spotted unusual activity around the landside walls of QuezaQua. In theory the magical barriers keep the Tooze out of the city and the Tooze created monsters inside. We need to make sure that the Tooze are not up to anything because of the birth of the new Priestess-Queen to come or for any reason at all."


DalentaTi smiled. "Of course, my sweetness. I suggest a massage and then a bath; you are tired from your training session."


At that he smiled back. "An excellent suggestion."

Edited by Maharg67
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  • 3 weeks later...



Tooze warriors moved fast, and stealthily, through the thick jungle growth of the island bay. They were almost naked, wearing little more than leather webbing of pouch dotted belts. Some carried wooden or other containers but most were focusing on being on guard. Around them there were the night time sounds of some birds and animals. The rustle of the hunting and the hunted. The high toned hooting of a local kind of owl. The Tooze were used to living wild and being hunted by Royal Rangers. They were taking a risk by being in the area but it was a necessary risk according to those they served; the men, and women, did not question their elders but did what they were told with deep loyalty.


They came to the large lagoon, to the robed man of pale skin and white eyes, to the large boat that they loaded the containers into under the light of one full and one half moon. There was something about the tall, robed, man that made them nervous despite that they were all tough fighting veterans. The eleven of them were glad to be away from him, turning and vanishing back into the depths of the jungle.


The man grimaced and stepped back into the large boat that had neither oars or a sail. He stood and looked towards the bow of the vessel, to the ugly carved figurehead there, and towards the opening of the lagoon that led out to the ocean beyond. Then he grimaced even more, held up an elegantly ugly hard wooden staff and chanted softly in an elegantly ugly ancient language.


Invisible forced gripped hold of the boat and soon it was moving smoothly across the large island lagoon. A pale glow surrounded the necromancer and the vessel as strange undeathly figures pushed the dark wooden vessel along. Dolphins swam swiftly away from the boat as did other living creatures.

Edited by Maharg67
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  • 2 weeks later...


Warrior-Lord CaembraZiv had gained a report on a small expedition, of Tooze elite warriors, traveling through an area that they normally kept away from. They had delivered items to an isolated lagoon except that there dwelt some 'little people' who had observed fearfully what had taken place. They were too intimidated to go close to the powerful, evil necromancer and his boat but they had kept a safe, distant watch on him from treetops.

Some may have failed to see the importance of the event but not so Warrior-Lord CaembraZiv. He ordered up the use of a flying-boat and went in the magical flying vessel to the lagoon site. Of course there was an entourage including bodyguards, mages and scouts. There was also the crew of the large wingboat.

As he stood on the shore of the lagoon, at the very spot where the necromancer had taken items from fearful Tooze warriors, he could 'sense' the dark unnatural power and basic state of the one. Also he knew that the necromancer was one that, in theory, should have been killed many years ago. If one of the dreaded Tooze GrayHazo, of malignant QuezaQua, had survived then what other nasty surprises awaited him.

There had never been any hint of the survival of such a dangerous individual and yet he had set up a large network to catch such whispers. Clearly his network had failed and he badly wanted to know why. He would not jump to conclusions though treachery was a strong possibility. No security system was one hundred percent secure, it was impossible for that to be true. Also the Tooze had been in power a long time and had carefully built their own, deeply embedded, secret networks. He knew very well he had not managed to destroy, or even damage, at least some of those.

It was an oddity that he stood there, in such a beautiful natural landscape, while his mind was full of a far darker, very unnatural subjects. Seagulls drifted on the air currents. Dolphins were glimpsed in the waters of the lagoon. The wingboat floated gently on the same lagoon waters. He was reminded, once more, of what he was fighting for and he vowed to himself, yet again, that he would put a final ending to the threat of the Tooze and the darkness that led them.

Edited by Maharg67
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CaembraZiv, and his people, followed the trail left by the Tooze warriors that had taken something to the lagoon. They were soon in thick jungle and yet they had no trouble following where the enemy had gone because the foe had been intent on speed; they had made no efforts to hide their tracks. Despite the cut trail, the traveling was not easy for many local plants were very tough and grew with amazing speed, especially in that season of more rains.


The first of the Aratoro scouts reached a small grassy clearing with ancient, crumbling ruins of a Tooze temple. Many of those had been destroyed and the areas spiritually cleansed but the jungle hid many more and then there were those deliberately concealed. The grasses growing closer to the temple were only of those kinds that seemed to have some kind of powerful resistance to necromantic magic but even those did not reach all the way to the edges of the squat stone temple.


The exterior of the squat pyramid had been damaged by local people, be they human tribals or 'little people'; some of the 'little people' were not very little! Aratoro warriors surrounded the temple, at a distance, while their leader went closer to inspect it along with some mages and mage-warriors. There had once been torture sacrifices of humans, little people and animals there but now the undeathly power of the place was diminished. Locals had dared to deface the temple, smashing warding symbols of necromantic magic, breaking down murals and statues.


CaembraZiv cursed softly. "The destruction, and cleansing, of this vile temple must take place soon."


EllessTane, a great wizardess, stood in robes and held a long wooden staff. She, like CaembraZiv, had been involved in the destruction of the Tooze Kingdom and the crushing of the later Tooze Rebellion. Like him she had gained many very dark experiences. She nodded, with a grim expression on her face. "I will make sure of it myself. Magic to break it down and spiritual light to cleanse it. The Tooze trail ends here so they came from the temple but also from either dark magical means or a tunnel. There does not seem to be enough necromantic energies here for them to use so I suggest a tunnel is more likely."


The Tooze had used horrific sacrifice rituals to empower temple sites and then used the undeathly energies built up there to achieve various ends. They had to be kept recharged, using the same dreaded means with only some possible alternatives. Tooze necromancers had used such temples to teleport from place to place, going from temple to temple. Even they only used such tricks when needed for necromancers sometimes vanished or were changed badly when they reappeared; such undead monster necromancers were so bad that the Tooze quickly destroyed them; they were called the TooziZogo. Only thing good about the TooziZogo, even by Tooze standards, was that they were very rare, especially on the mortal planes.


They found the open entrance into the temple, that led to a sacrificial chamber and antechambers, but that was not what they were really after. They found a secret entrance to a tunnel, including weakened magical wards, and found it was cramped, greasy with strange mosses and dully lit by some kind of morgue light of a glowing substance. The strange environment felt awful and unnatural. They began to follow the Tooze.

Edited by Maharg67
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Without warning, abruptly, the tunnel widened out into some kind of elongated chamber that seemed to be only partly artificial. Tooze symbols were carved into walls and fading murals covered walls in other areas. Garish picture-symbols were there along with dark magical emblems. Skulls had been stuck to walls in bizarre patterns.


The group spread out but not too much. They remained in a good flexible fighting formation and that was good for fake areas of wall crumbled into the chamber to release zombies and skeletors upon the newcomers. They were former Tooze warriors and they attacked with basic weapons, even the shambling zombies. The undead skeletons were faster, nimbler, but the zombies were stronger.


The fighting was brutal and the enemy came rushing to fight with berserker determination. The Aratoro warriors struck them down as did the warrior-mages and mages. The zombies, and skeletors, were no match for their elite foes and as they fell, not one of them came close to doing any damage to the intruders.


Then the fighting was over!


CaembraZiv walked amongst the unnaturally fast decaying undead and looked around, searching for something. "Something triggered them off but I can find no sign of what it might be."


EllessTane also searched and then she pointed her staff at what looked like just one emblem in a cluster of many. "Very cunning! The warding emblem is well concealed and it triggered the attack of the undead from their well hidden wall pockets. I can 'sense' that the undead have been walled up there for centuries, that is long before the Tooze Kingdom fell. This may be a left over from the Tooze Civil War; a Tooze Faction may have made this place, including the trap."


The Tooze Civil War had been extremely violent and many Tooze had been killed. It was generally understood that the civil war weakened the evil kingdom so that, in later times, it was easier to overthrow. Not much knowledge remained of the civil war, at least not in the hands of the new kingdom.


EllessTane, assisted by other mages, searched. The others stood back because it was too dangerous for them to help except for CaembraZiv and he wanted to remain ready in case more trouble struck the expedition. Nothing much was found except for some necromantic emblems, and scrolls, that were carefully destroyed.


The writing, the murals, spoke one of the strange, twisted mythological stories favored by the Tooze that, to outsiders, were more confusing than clarifying of Tooze culture and history.


They moved on, entering the tunnel at the other end of the big elongated chamber from where they had entered it.

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The next few hours were taken up by moving through a series of tunnels, part of a large spread out maze of them. The trick was to continue following the Tooze with out becoming victims of various booby-traps and other threats, many not of Tooze making.

Tunnels changed in nature, they crossed through mostly bare chambers and often they had to provide their own sources of light. They produced enough light to give them safe travel but not enough, hopefully, to easily attract danger. As it was they had to repulse a swarm of savage cave-rats and carefully disarm a cunning Tooze venom-dart trap.

They found themselves plunging steadily deeper underground, which was not what any of them had expected would happen. They had expected that the Tooze had crossed the island using the tunnels and that they would end up at a tunnel exit somewhere, having staid generally closer to the surface. Now they were quite deep and getting deeper. The tunnels, and chambers, were getting increasingly older in make and stranger in design.

They came upon the first broken statue of a vampiric demigoddess, the identity long lost, looking both beautiful as a woman and yet somehow also very evil. She was lurid, naked except for chain-belts and held a kind of bizarre axe-spear like weapon that glittered unnaturally.

EllessTane grimaced. "Even Tooze do not like to speak of the Vampire Deities of the Bloodmare Realm. Once, it is whispered in some of their more obscure records, the Tooze worshiped the Bloodmarie but became sundered from them for reasons unknown to any Aratoro, as far as I know."

The voice spoke from the statue and was somehow both sweetly sexy and blood chillingly evil. "Even we Bloodmarie became tired of the extremes of the Tooze and their atrocities, their desire for forbidden knowledge and their challenges to our authority. We fear what ancient dark powers they might unearth but, more importantly, what ancient dark entities they might awaken or free from ancient prisons. Take my weapon, if you dare, for you will need it at least once against what you will confront. When you no longer need it, I will reclaim the weapon, which I left her for you to find. Yes, we Bloodmarie offer this service only for ourselves but in truth both our peoples must stop the Tooze from carrying out an insane plan."

Then the voice was gone and the statue crumbled, with unnatural speed, into dust. They took up the bizarre, deadly weapon, but wrapped it carefully in magic warded cloth before they did so.

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Why did CaembraZiv, and EllessTane, go ahead with taking the cursed weapon? Because they 'sensed' truth in the terrible vampire deity's words and that they would need the weapon. Because EllessTane knew it was a very rare type of weapon as designed, and made, by powerful undead entities to destroy other powerful undeathly entities.

The maze of tunnels grew bigger, more ancient and a strange coldness arose that seemed to chill more than just the body but also the mind and spirit.

CaembraZiv became concerned that they had not brought enough food and drink for the expedition. They had planned to be back on the surface earlier than that, had not planned to be going deeper underground. He certainly did not trust to any local waters or any local food that could be gained by hunting, gathering or looting.

They were all surprised to find the great cavern chamber, a cavernland stretching out into the far distance, being one festooned with great, glistening mushroom like fungi, dotted with brackish lakes of water so cold as to give off a kind of mist and ancient, slowly crumbling structures. The buildings were not of the Tooze or even of humans. No, they were of the ancient cursed Mer, the Necromer who were a whole Mer people devoted to necromantic knowledge, power and unholy longevity.

EllessTane frowned hard as the group hunkered down for a rest and to have some food and water. “I would not believe it if I was not looking at it. Necromer here? There have been stories but we, the supposed learned and wise, refused to believe in them. I wonder how much else we have gotten wrong in our arrogance.”

The warlord frowned. “I would not call you arrogant, though I would not hesitate to say the same thing about some of your compatriots. That may be a Necromer city but clearly it has been abandoned long ago. Or at least by any more organized, skilled, form of society. I would not like to try to go through that city, not with out more people and more resources. I suggest that we backtrack and try to find a way around it.”

The wizardess shook her head, also frowning. “Something tells me that it will not be so easy as all that. If we try to retrace our steps, there will be obstacles in our way. We are badly wanted here, if not by one force, than my more than one. It would not surprise me if the Tooze, that we have been following, have also been manipulated off course. Then again, they could have gained what they were carrying from this underground area. They could have gained Necromer artifacts. That would be a most dangerous venture for I doubt that such would be left unguarded; I suspect necromantic magics, and undead creatures, would still protect them.”

It was then that the undead things attacked.

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  • 2 weeks later...


The undead things were skeletal creatures but not just former humans. There were former hounds, huge ones, bat like things that flew clumsily through the air and swarms of skeletal ex-rats. Thankfully they came at the newcomers across a great space to get at the expedition and they had time to go into a good defensive formation. Arrows were unleashed along with bolts of magical energies. Undead fell into true death, many crumbling-burning away.

EllessTane destroyed many of the undead but even a wizardess of her power could not keep up such a heavy use of magic. She ceased as the group began to fall backwards. CaembraZiv was a moderately powerful mage, which was not something that many knew. Yet he took to using his magical weapons as the fighting became close order dealing of death. Swords flashed and struck shields or armor. Arrows kept flying. The mages ran out of magical strength but the warrior-mages kept on fighting with their weapons.

The situation was growing grimmer with every passing second as increasingly more of the undead came at the defenders.

Which was when the other monstrous things struck as great glistening tentacles shot out of brackish water and struck with horrific power and speed. Yet they struck not at the mortals but at he undead, grabbing them up and pulling them into the waters with astonishing speed.

“Amazing!” EllessTane spoke. “I had heard they existed but I did not believe it. They are called tentaculars and they feed on the undead just as the undead feed on life. It is written, in the Beastery Tomes of AgustariO, that they lie dormant until they 'sense' the nearby presence of enough undead, enough undeath, to make it worth while for them to strike. Clearly the army of the undead was enough to gain their interest.”

The warlord frowned. “We truly do dwell in a most strange realm. Were the undead summoned against us somehow?”

“I do not know!” The woman shook her head. “I would need to do a search of this place and to do a magical sweep.” She looked to him suddenly and focused on his chest in a sharp fashion that made him more than a little uncomfortable. There was an beautiful stone medallion hanging there with some meaningless but beautiful patterning on its face. “Where did you get that?”

He frowned softly. “DalentaTi gave it to me as a good luck charm. She bought it at a local markets, from a minor priestess.”

EllessTane moved with swiftness and grabbing the medallion, snapped it cleanly in half so two disks were made from one. She showed him what was exposed inside and he shut up in shock before he could say anything. The two exposed symbols were fairly weak 'undeath attractors' that while not so dangerous under most circumstances, could prove lethal when combined with other dark forces. The medallion burned away to dust in her hands.

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