Unlikely Heroes for Unhappy Times
An Elven Cleric/Thief in the service of Erevan Ilesere
Hit Points:- 15
Biography of Thia Amakiir – Part 1
Thia Amakiir was born in the Forest of Tangled Trees in Cormanthor and spent much of her early life as apprentice to the quartermaster in a small town called Starbreeze.
Her younger years were pretty uneventful until one fateful day, when making the long journey north to trade spell components and gems with the pixie encampment she was ambushed by a party of gnolls. She put up a valiant fight but being severely outnumbered was ultimately captured.
She was taken to their stronghold and put in in the larder. There was to be a feast later that day to celebrate the crowing of their new Eleri and elf ears being a particularly favourite delicacy of hers, Thia was to feature in the fourteenth course.
This was a very tight spot for the young elf to find herself in and she knew she must think on her feet or things would be a lot quieter from then on for her. The room she was in was damp and stinky and windowless so she could see very little indeed. She could hear the distant murmuring of two voices as they appeared to be arguing over something. She strained to hear what they were saying but could not make out any of the words.
After what seemed like an age the door to the larder swung open and two gnolls appeared. Both wore blood stained aprons and the larger was holding a vicious looking cleaver.
“Quick quick, let’s be ‘aving them ears of yours. Me has twenty eight other courses to prepare before this evening”, said the larger of the two in the common tongue.
“May I ask one question? While I’m still able to hear the answer”, said Thia.
“Grrr dinner asking questions now. Quick quick number 14, what is it?
“I heard raised voices – What were you pair arguing about? Maybe I can help settle it,” said Thia.
“Dinner won’t know answer” said the larger gnoll, “Time for elf and ears to part company now…”
“Wait!”, piped up the smaller gnoll, “I want to ask, then you’ll see I’m right”.
Big gnoll shrugged and growled a little but conceded and smaller gnoll said “It’s a riddle and it goes like this:
“You can see nothing else
When you look in my face
I will look you in the eye
And I will never lie.
“I say the answer is Yeenoghu because he is the demon prince and he never lies, but Yip-Yip here thinks it is a cliff face because it is so big you can see nothing else. What you think fourteen?”
“Hmmm”, said Thia, “both are very good answers and I can see how clever you must be to think of them, but I think the answer is a mirror”.
The two gnolls looked blankly at one another, and Thia could see that they didn’t understand the word so she produced a small mirror from her pocket and held it up in front of the face of Yip-Yip.
“Ruff ruff RUFF! Come look Waggy-Tail. It is like a millpond but the picture of Yip-Yip is clear as day”.
The two gnolls then spent some considerable time looking into the mirror, admiring themselves, preening and complimenting one another on the sheen of their fur and whiteness of fang. This was very odd behaviour indeed for gnolls and Thia began to suspect that this pair were perhaps more into Rover than Lassie, or at the very least that their tails wagged both ways.
The afternoon wore on while the two gnolls admired themselves in the mirror until all of a sudden Yip-Yip seemed to remember what he was supposed to be doing, snapped out of his reverie and cried, “Quick quick, dishes to prepare! “.
Waggy-Tail looked at Thia and gave her a long sniff. “No time to make elf ears now. Let’s skip number 14. Eleri has fat haunches anyway.”
“True. She got cankles”, agreed Yip-Yip thoughtfully.
So that’s how it happened. Thia became a house elf. Yip-Yip and Waggy-Tail lacked the manual dexterity to do the fine stitching that they were so fond of in their soft furnishings so they took Thia home to keep house for them.
It wasn’t a bad life and she actually grew quite fond of the two gnolls in a strange sort of way. They treated her well, taught her their language and were always very complimentary about her stitching. They even learned after a time that butt sniffing was not an appropriate greeting for an elf, which she was very pleased about indeed.
Still though, she craved her freedom and was constantly on the look out for her opportunity to escape.
Biography of Thia Amakiir – Part 2
It was a very special evening in the gnoll stronghold as they prepared for the blood moon festival. There was much yapping and frivolity and Yip-Yip and Waggy-Tail were positively beside themselves with excitement, running in all directions making preparations for the party.
Thia had been working very hard on an embroidered cushion cover which depicted her two captors’ brave victory over a group of vicious adventurers they had met on the road to Blackfeather Bridge. It had been a close run thing and the two gnolls had nearly lost their tails, but through their bravery and sheer cunning they had won the day. She was just finishing sewing the blood spatters when Yip and Waggy came bounding in the door.
“Fourteeeen Where are you?”, called Waggy.
“I’m here”, replied Thia, “and I’ve finished your very special present”, she said as she presented them with the cushion cover.
“Oooo”, cooed Yip-Yip, “what very super good needlework! It’s divine and you’ve captured us most perfectly”.
“Yes indeed!”, agreed Waggy-Tail, “and as reward for all your hard work we take you to party tonight. You help hand out gibberling giblet canapés Yip-Yip made. Put on your least grubby rags and we go!”
This was a rare treat for young Thia. She was hardly ever allowed to even leave the house and here she was off to the forest, for a party no less. She felt almost giddy as she sucked in the fresh air and the mossy smells of the wet forest filled her lungs.
As they approached the woodland clearing she could see that already there were close to a hundred gnolls yapping and laughing and making merry.
A large reddish brown coloured gnoll, who Thia guessed was a female due to the flowers and decorative dung balls woven into her fur, was eying the young elf evilly. She called out to Yip and Wag, “Hey you two bring your own fresh snack! Enough to share!”
Waggy grabbed hold of Thia protectively, “This not snack, foolish Urlau. This Fourteen and she’s our house elf”.
“Smells like snack to me”, muttered Urlau under her breath.
The party got going and Thia busied herself handing out hors d’oeuvres. Yip and Waggy were having a super time, regaling the other guests with stories of their daring raids and bloody battles. They looked completely engrossed so Thia took the opportunity to snaffle a flagon of ale and looked around for a comfy spot to sit and rest a while. She couldn’t go far as the gnolls has taken the precaution of attaching a leg iron to the elf and the other end to a large tree, but she found a tree stump a little away from the main group and settled down to enjoy her drink.
Maybe she was distracted by the excitement of being out in the forest again or maybe it was the ale but Thia didn’t notice Urlau until she was almost upon her. In a flash of red fur and dung balls the gnoll leapt at the elf. Thia dived out of the way but Urlau was too swift and landed a savage bite on the young elf’s leg. Stunned by the pain Thia lay where she was for a split second and Urlau took the opportunity to dive towards her throat, teeth bared and ready to deliver the killing blow. But then suddenly, mid pounce, the gnoll fell to the ground and began snoring noisily.
Thia couldn’t believe her luck!. More so still when she looked down at her leg iron to see that the clasp was open and she was free. Without wasting another moment she limped as quickly and silently as she could manage away from the clearing and deep into the forest.
The pain in her leg was terrible but she kept going. She had no idea where exactly she was going but all the while had the strangest feeling that she was going the right way, almost as if she were being led.
Eventually she came upon another clearing and stopped to catch her breath. All of a sudden she sensed she wasn’t alone and swung around to see a pixie, dressed all in black, smiling at her.
“Strange company you keep”, said the pixie.