Lost Mine of Phandelver

A Family Memory

Secrets in Blood

Rosch sat cross legged in his room at Hillcrest Manor, hands resting gently on his knees palms up. Even with his eyes closed Rosch could feel the shape of the room around him, the cracks in the walls, the stone beneath him. Slowly he focused his awareness inward, sharpening and reducing it until his mind was focused on his body. When his master taught him this technique it was difficult to learn, but once mastered was relatively easy. An unconscious smile played along his lips, as he remembered telling his master that, the man had laughed and told him the more his power grows the more difficulty it would become. He was correct of course, at this point getting to this level of body awareness took all of his focus.
Looking inside he could feel the pools of energy within his body, the mostly empty and broken pool of Ki energy, the undeveloped and mostly untapped pool of mana, and the large pool of Psi that circled both in his mind and all throughout his body in place of the Ki that most people had.
As he followed his pathways he saw that everything was as it should be, now to go deeper. There were secrets in his blood, deep secrets, passed down from the first Uskevren. His family had a cup that, once of age, every member would drink a small portion of their own blood from. His father had told him that the ceremony, for most, was just a tradition; but those that had the power, and the will of a true Uskevren, one that was to bold to hide, would be shown the secret of the Uskevren’s origin. That was the legend anyway.
Rosch had gone through the ceremony when he was a young man, before he mouthed off to the wrong creature and was broken. He knew he had grown much since the ceremony, he had made great friends and seen some of them die. He had started a company and helped goodly folk. He had freed slaves and conquered dragons. He had been broken and reforged his body with his mind and will. While he did not have the cup he did have his blood and as his master had taught him he was in control of his body and all things it represented. From the broken Ki pool to the tattoo on his chest or the secret in his blood; he would learn and control it all.
Letting his body go limp Rosch focused his power deeper into his body than ever before, he forced open a connection to his blood and through it to his family’s past. Generations of Uskevren’s past through his mind’s eye, a black haired woman climbing a tower at night, a burly man standing in the wild suddenly transforming into a wolf, a skinny man with a cocky grin floating in the air with lightning playing between his hands, an old man with sharp eye smoking a pipe. All these images and more flashed through mind as he force his way deeper. They were Uskevrens one and all, awoken to the power of their blood; but they were not the primarch, they were not the first.
Then the flow of images suddenly stopped and for a moment there was nothing, then with a flash of light and the sound of a crashing wave a man appeared. Rosch found himself standing on a ship rolling gently on the waves looking up he saw a single man standing behind railing of a higher deck looking down at him. The man wore a long coat of deep blue and black, a simple cutlass hung from his hip and there was an odd trident learning on the railing next to him. Rosch did not get the impression that he was an altogether good man, the hint of calculation in his eyes and the cruel turn of his lip made that seem unlikely.
“Wall now, wha’ ‘ave we ‘ere? A traveler to this place, an’ within out da cup as a buffer. Interesting. Ta do ‘is on ‘ur own is a mighty feat lad, mighty indeed.” The man said as he considered Rosch. “Me old blood runs true in you I think,” he finished thoughtfully.
The man’s dark glittering eyes continued to study Rosch, “Aye the power’s there, but none oh me charm, ye be an ugly one,” the man said laughing at his own joke. “So, what do you want? Tis no easy task coming here, I saw to that.”
Rosch was not sure what he meant by that but he knew this could only be his ancestor the one who started his house. “You’re him aren’t you, the first of the Uskavers?”
The man barked a laugh, “Aye lad, I’m the first of many households, I plowed a few fields in my time if you know my meaning,” with a courtly bow his face turned serious and proud, “but aye, Twas I that started our line of nobility in Simbia and tied the strength of my blood to my bloodline.”
“ So there is a secret to our line and to our blood?” Rosch asked eyes widening slightly. Rosch always believed there had to be but believed it to be some kind of information not, power.
“Well…” the man said with a knowing smile, “of a sort.”
The man stood straight and took up the trident from its resting place on the rail. “You’ve the right to know I guess, you more than most. You have shown true grit to get here, especially without the cup.” The man said with a shrug, “ so I’ll tell you some of the tail.”
“Yur from the blood of a pirate lad, twas never a well guarded secret really and many knew. But with wealth and power doors are opened that would otherwise be closed and allowances are made.” As the man talked he seemed to lose the rough broge that he had started the conversation with.
“No lad, the secret was not that I was a powerful pirate it’s how I became powerful.”
Rosch nodded at the man’s words, the rumors of the Uskevren’s pirate legacy were, if not common, still whispered in Simbia before he left.
“There are many reasons and tails for how I got to where I was, but those tails are not for today, you seek a secret so a secret you shall have. I had a Weapon of Power.” He stated simply.
Rosch looked at the man confused, “what the hell is that supposed to mean.”
The man grinned, “HA! Tis exactly what I said to the man what told me about the thing, but his words proved true.”
“Twas a trident lad, one similar to this one,” he said gesturing with the trident in his hand, “one the legends say were forged by giants for the sea god himself. A Weapon of Power.”
“Seek it out I did, and I find it I did,” the man said with a satisfied tone. “It twas even more then the stories gave it credit for, it could lay low the greatest of foes in a handful of blows, and commanded many magical abilities. But it is no mere tool, it posses a mind and purpose all it own and it does not suffer the weak to bear it.”
“Many have tried to take it up over the many years since it’s creation, elf, dwarf, man or giant. Many have tried and many have failed, some paying with their lives for their failure.”
“And what do you think I had, and some in my line have, that the others who had tried to take it up lacked?”
“The will to take it and to wield it,” Rosch said firmly.
“Aye lad, the will to take it and to rule it. And if you had the will to get here you’ve the will to take up that same power, I think.”
With a heave the man threw the trident into the wood at Rosch’s feet. “Seek it out if you would have my power. That trident served me well just as I served it and it’s purpose well but you must be able to control it, tis no simple weapon to take up.”
“How do I find it?”
The man got a cruel smile on his face, “Why, it calls to your blood or perhaps for your blood. If you can no master it or come to an accord with it, the weapon will kill you. Make no mistake.”
“Well then..”
“Ba! No more questions! You know what you need if you want it. Leave me to sail the breadth of my lines bloody immortality,” the man gave Rosch a grim smile. “Tis our lines gift to me for founding it after all.”
With that the world around Rosch seemed to explode in a torrent of red and black before fading away. When Rosch came to some time later his face was in a thin pool of blood formed from a small stream coming from his nose.

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