The True Dreamers
The first conversation with The Portal Master
The portal master directed the arriving dreamers to a preparation room filled with gear from Arastia. There he bid them ask their questions. Here they are with responses.
Player: “Why am I (are we) here?”
The Portal Master “That is the hardest question of all. It is somewhat of a surprise to me that Earth has produced travelers. Our last survey showed almost no true magical ability, though charlatans abounded. You are an expression of your world’s desire, and your own, to explore. But the real answer is that you are both here and not here. In your own world you lie dreaming. You could live out many lifetimes here and still wake-up there when all is said and done. Ultimately it will be for you to give meaning to why you are here. “
Player: “So I am dreaming. Can I wake up?”
The Portal Master “You can return anytime you wish. Merely will yourself awake. But ask yourself this, would you be here if you were not ready to see what awaits you? Likewise you can return here any time. The way is opened for you if your desire is strong enough to make the connection. “
Player: “Where am I?”
The Portal Master “You are in a way-station, one of many. They have many names, the portal of worlds, the hall of many doors, the gateway, the hall of worlds, and the nexus. I am the portal master. I am your guide and your chronicler. I open the door and you step beyond. There you may yet discover the true meaning of adventure. “
Player: “Why I am I in this body.
The Portal Master “This is your current avatar. Your dream desire has molded your form here. You may be an avatar of the Forgotten Realms, Scales of War or million other worlds. Your Avatars can feel and worship whatever deity they know and will have contact with the higher power no matter what world they enter. This is who you wish to be at this time. You may have other avatars in other times and places. For now you are your race and class and bear your name.“
Player: “Who are you?”
The Portal Master “I am the portal master. The master of this way-station and the hallway beyond that connects to many, many worlds. I am also a guide to your upcoming adventures and the scribe of your explorations.”
Player: What adventure do you have for us then?
The Portal Master A darkened world. Hope is not yet dimmed but shrunk to pockets of light amidst a sea of night. My soon to be friends, Arastia awaits, the world of Shattered shadows. You can go whenever you consider yourselves ready. If I have seen correctly, you will determine which way the balance rocks.
Player: How do we get there?
The Portal Master When we are finished and you are ready I will provide each of you two keys. One opens the door to the hall of worlds. The other will open the door to Arastia. Just tell me when you are ready to leave.
Player: Can we equip ourselves?
The Portal Master Around you, you will find a few sparse items. Please remember that Arastia is a fallen world. Anyone who appeared with fine gear would be looked on with great suspicion. Take what you need, all are items are duplicates of those from the world you will travel to. Just tell me when you are ready to leave. You will also find a magical map of Arastia. It is nearly indestructible save for exposure to continuous fire or acid and will show you the current conditions as they are on Arastia.
Player: I saw two creatures in the room where we first appeared, what are they?
The Portal Master They are Iron Golems. They guard the hall. Should any doorway be breached they, and myself are the final defense.
Player: What happens if we die in the world beyond?
The Portal Master If you die, you will return alive again to this hall, forgetting a few hours of your experiences. From here you can return to the Hall of Worlds and ultimately back to your friends. The gear you have lost will be in the world beyond and will be up to you to recover, but you will also be able to restock here as needed.
Player: Is there anything more you can offer?
The Portal Master Please feel free to look around you. Everything except myself and the walls in this room are from Arastia. If you wish, return to the room you appeared in. There you will find another door to my library. There is some research material there in the second archive from the left on Arastia. Please fell free to read it and return. The archive is magical so anything you take will be replaced, feel free to permanently borrow the volumes on Arastia. Return here when you are ready to leave.
Player: We are ready to go.
The Portal Master Are you sure? Have you equipped yourselves and finished your research?
The Portal Master Return here when you are ready to leave.
The Portal Master Then your adventure begins. You come from a world where most consider themselves mundane, a place were magic is the stuff of Fairy tales. Yet in Arastia Fairies are very real, and they sometimes bite. While the sting of death is not what it is in your world, the pain of loss can be just as great. Choose carefully. Here is your key to the Hall of Worlds. The hall lies down the stairs guarded by my iron friends. They will now let you pass. Everyone received the key to the hall of worlds; an unbreakable golden crystal key that is a sphere with a thin rod attached to a triangle. (If dropped it returns to the Avatar, or new Avatar if the original is dead.)
The Portal Master Here now is the key to your first world. There are many doors in the hall of worlds. This key will light the correct door and open it for you. Have a care, the inhabitants of this particular world are suspicious of strangers and they have right to be. Earn their trust and decide whether ye be villains, heroes, or a bit of both. Everyone received the key to Arastia; a Dark iron skeleton key with eyes of silver. (If dropped it returns to the Avatar, or new Avatar if the original is dead.)
The Portal Master May all the doors of your future, open at your touch.