Jo-dahn the Man Witch

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Jo-dahn the Man Witch

Post  girdnas on Sun May 13, 2012 5:14 am

History of Jo-dahn:

Born here in Sandpoint, Jo's parents were both Tian who turned up in the town just days before the birth. His mother, Shu'Han Min, was a Tian-Min from Minkai. His father, known only as Ong, was Tian-Sing from the Wandering Isles of Minata. The family was welcomed by distant cousins, the Kaijitsu family. After a few weeks, the people of Sandpoint rarely saw the new arrivals again. They moved into a small run-down guard post on the fringe of the wild and soon turned it into a working ranch-farm. They raised all manner of vegetables, a small assortment of livestock, and Jo-dahn in relative solitude. When he got old enough, Jo eagerly began working the farm with his parents. His life was a joyful one.

At the age of 10, something happened to cause Jo's parents to flee their long-loved home in the night. Rumors abound about why this was so, but the only thing certain was they abandoned Jo'Dahn, leaving him behind in the care of some Friends of the Family among the Sandpoint citizenry. The Mvashti family took Jo in at his parents request. Jo was fond of both Koya and her aged mother, Niska, but his abandonment plagued him, turning him sullen and angry, prone to outbursts of both fury and depression. The Mvashti's did all they could to help the boy but he was regarded as unpredictable and strange by the majority of the townfolk, leading him to seek solace in the surrounding wilderness. He would disappear into it for longer and longer periods of time. Noone knows where he goes, just that every time someone says he is surely dead, he returns. Most recently, upon his return after months away, the teenager has become even more of a sensation due to his outlandish garb and odd behavior. No longer prone to anger or sadness, he exudes a calm arrogance, as if he knows things noone else does. He freely talks about beings from the between-place, living among us in the place between moments and other such comments. He and his pet bird of some strange variety not seen before are frequently seen standing in the shadows, watching you intently. Certain strange events around town, minor accidents that create messes or awkward situations for their victims, have been going on ever since Jo's return. He seemed eager to join up when he heard about the goblins.





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Story Fragment...Jo-Dahn's Path to Power: From Boy to Witch

Post  girdnas on Thu May 17, 2012 8:36 pm

Jo’dahn remembers his parents. Six years later he still dreams of them, the same nightmarish memory. Nightmarish to him at 10 seasons old, the day they left him behind. He was old enough to understand something was not right as they woke him early and rushed him out of his small farm, out of life as he knew. They would only say it was not safe there any longer. Over the fields his parents drove the extra horses, scattering them through the crop. Leaving false trails for whoever Jo’dahn knew was out there, searching for them. Jo’dahn was clever even then. The fear was piercing and cold as they galloped down shadowed trails, leading toward the town. His eyes watched the darkness, imagining what might come out of it. Then he saw her, from his seat upon the back of his father’s fastest mount. Shu’Han Min, his mother, wore such a fierce expression on her gentle face as she galloped alongside, his fear fled. Her gaze defied even the moonlight which seemed to shine from her rather than onto her. It shone in her silken black hair, making it gleam silver. It shone from her pale skin which glowed like porcelain. It even shone in her eyes as they bore without fear into the darkness. She turned her head then, catching him staring, and the stern look melted as she smiled at him, reassuring, beautiful, his mother again.

His father, Ong, rode smoothly, hunched over, guiding his horse with his legs as much as his hands. Glimpses of his creased forehead and bristling eyebrows from over his shoulder was all Jo could see. At his hip, slapping in time with the hoofbeats, was his sword, a family heirloom passed down for generations. The tattoos along his arms and neck drank in the moonlight, made him seem a shadow.

Jo clung to him as they plunged forward, through dark clumps of brush and stands of trees. Across a river, leaving them soaked in the chill air, and down a steep slope overlooking the village they rode. They finally came to their destination, a small home on the outskirts of town. Jo knew the place; he had been there often. It was nearly like a second home already, and this made Jo nervous. He realized before his parents even dismounted that they were leaving. Their packs were full, their horses loaded for a long journey. He had nothing but his bedclothes. He begged with them, pleaded, refused stubbornly to get off the horse until his father was forced to drag him from the saddle. Crying, he struggled as hard as he could, meaning to not let them do this, to come with them no matter the cost. It was the first time his father had ever struck him. The surprise registered on all their faces was the last image he remembers, for he turned and ran from them, angry and bitterly alone. When he made his way back to the small cottage, they were gone. Niska, the old fortune-teller, and her daughter, Koya, took him in.

After that day, Jo was a sullen, bitter boy, prone to fits of anger and depression. The elder women gave him his space, and hoped he would forgive his parents. Frequently, Jo would disappear for days. As he got older, this happened more often and for longer times. Where Jo went was a secret he told to noone. At first, it had just been short jaunts through the wilderness that courted the town. Animals and plants he had never seen caught his interest, and he would chase them or examine them, taking his mind off the emptiness in his heart. Occasionally, he would feel someone watching him, but never did he see anyone. The feeling became more frequent the older he got, and instead of nervousness it enticed him. Something was out there, waiting for him, yet it was so familiar it almost felt like a piece of himself. He began to see and hear strange things, answering questions noone had asked and seeing things out of the corner of his eyes, forms moving near him, reaching out to him. If he turned to look, there would be nothing, and he would see no more tricks of the eye. This all made him even more of a stranger within his own community, as he could tell by the whispers and stares of the townsfolk. At first they had thought him troubled, now they thought him mad. So he left, knowing he didn’t belong, knowing he would never find what he sought there. He began living within the wilds, traveling through them, following the flitting motes of air he could see in his peripheral vision, feeling insane but knowing they meant something, wanted him for something. They guided him, that was certain. More than once, if not for them, he would have been killed or harmed by creatures or pitfalls. Always deeper into the wildlands they drew him. He met various intelligent creatures of the woodlands along the way, some who aided, others who threatened. Those are other stories.

In the end, half-starving and delirious, he stumbled through a thick fog swimming with blurred figures that danced at the fringes of his vision. Sound was blurred as well, and what was real he could not tell. The ground escaped him, disappearing beneath his feet. He seemed to float, chasing it, fear driving his mind to clarity while his feet moved vainly through the air. The impact slammed the breath from his lungs and he rolled to a stop in a black ravine, sharp walls like fanged maws looming over him. Standing on battered legs, he could see broken pillars and arches of stone, their faces worn away. All around them were nests of dead wood and living plants. Large eggs were broken open, empty, shards of shell littering the ground. His feet crunched on them and he felt fear rise in him, strange fear that he couldn’t explain but that he recognized well: fear of being left, alone, abandoned, the only one of his kind. A blur at the side of his vision made him turn, thinking his guides had returned, but it was his own tears that tricked him. He laughed at that, feeling giddy in his despair. Searching he found nest after nest, some empty, some littered with the same broken eggs. Feathers of all colors ringed the nests that were full, the blood that caked them telling of a struggle to protect the nests, a struggle that was ultimately lost. The forest of ancient rock beneath the mist stretched on. It ended just as he was doubting it would, at a long broken ramp leading to a broad pedestal. Prowling around it was a beast as black as night, with eyes of blood and fangs like splintered bone. It sniffed the air, seeking something, turning on Jo-dahn when it sensed him there. Jo-dahn felt a fury that dwarfed him rise up, and he screamed in an odd tongue as he charged the creature, bare-handed, meaning to tear it apart with his own hands. It fled from him, or from what it saw within him, skittering up the sheer cliff wall and into the fog above. Leaving Jo feeling strangely empty, the rage gone as quickly as it had surged up, he found himself standing at the ramp. The impression of distance clashed with the reality of what he saw, a ramp that extended to a pedestal outcropping from the barren rock face, ringed by four twisting pillars curving inward, like fingers closing around an open palm. Stepping slowly up the ancient walkway lined with shallow grooves and images, he noticed another nest, hidden by the shadowy overhang of the cliff wall against which it lay. His heart raced and then fell. The nest was empty. Confusion and disappointment passed over his gaunt features. He hadn’t known what he expected. There was nothing but death here. Turning away, he gasped. There was something there. He looked again to make certain. Just an empty nest. Slowly he turned his head, and as the nest entered the periphery of his vision, a white oval shape appeared. Just as the images he had followed for so long were both there and not there, hidden from direct sight and visible only at a glance out of the corner of his eye, the egg materialized. Bending down, resisting the urge to look at it directly, he felt blindly with his hand, expecting to feel nothing. Instead, the cool shell was hard beneath his fingers. Large enough he could barely grip it, he lifted it from the nest. His touch seemed to bring the egg into focus, drawing from the between place where it had been hidden. He looked down when he felt it move, rather something inside it. It cracked in his hand with a snap that made him jump. A curved beak broke through, then a small black head with wide white eyes rolled up to regard his face. It shivered and shook the fragments off its black feathers, picking at them with its beak. A rushing filled the air, yet nothing stirred. He saw the blurred forms, like colorless figures of soft glass, moving all around him. His eyes gaped as they rushed by, leaping toward and clinging to the small bird before vanishing. The white eyes turned clear, glassy, and within them Jo could see the otherkind, beings from between existence, entities older than time. Eternity passed in an instant. In that moment, Jo knew all and nothing. Then it was gone. Only a morsel in his mind remained, a miniscule taste of their knowledge and power. That was all he needed to begin.


Last edited by girdnas on Fri May 18, 2012 2:22 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Jo-dahn the Man Witch

Post  Wakko on Fri May 18, 2012 9:17 am

Very good story!
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Patron Info

Post  girdnas on Sun May 27, 2012 10:15 pm

Thank you, William. I hope it was entertaining at least.

Here is some info about Jo's Patron, beings which have no name, and he calls many things.

The Beings (Trickery Patron)

The otherkind/no-kind, the between ones, the timeless: those are just a few ways Jo refers to them. They could be just what he says, beings from a between-place, that exist out of time. They could also be some other powerful entity or entities manipulating him. Either way, they are highly chaotic beings that revel in deception and trickery. They often urge Jo into playing pranks on others and even do so themselves through his familiar. When Jo casts his spells or uses hexes, his eyes become like clear glass but cannot be seen through. That is when the otherkind appear to him. Otherwise, he can only commune with them through Wo-juhn, his dodo bird familiar/guide.

They also appear in some form to the recipients/targets of his magic when he calls upon their power. Any time Fortune is upon an ally, that ally is guided at the last moment by one of these manifestations. It is as if a burst of insight comes upon them, a split second where they can see a second into the future, using this knowledge to make some small adjustment in their action or behavior to affect the outcome more favorably. Always this is accompanied by the brief appearance of the manifestation, a feeling of presence and a movement of the air beside them in the periphery of their vision.

Physically, who knows their true manifestation. They seem formless and are unable to fully take form in our realm, appearing as translucent humanoids of all sizes that flow like water when they move. They are like colorless shapes in the air, as if made of ethereal glass, with no discernable features besides a vague outline. Perhaps that is what they want, a way to manifest fully upon the physical realms.

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Jo's Parents

Post  girdnas on Mon May 28, 2012 12:02 am

Jo’s Parents

For some reason, they left him when they went back to Tian Xia. Jo knows that much at least. Niska told him it was to keep him safe, but he does not know from what or who. He has always intended to follow after them, to find them, but only now does he feel ready to do so.
I haven’t decided what is really going on. I figure that could tie in somehow at a later time or not, as is convenient. Perhaps they are both dead, and I will have to seek out their killer. Perhaps they were in hiding due to the embarrassment and dishonor they brought upon their families by being romantically involved with a member of a different ethnicity/culture. Their families could be influential or fanatical enough to actually have hired mercenaries or assassins to seek them out and kill or capture them. Either way, they left Jo because whoever seeks them out did not know of her pregnancy and therefore they wish to keep Jo’s existence a secret. Perhaps it was because of Jo and what he becomes. Just vomiting ideas. I'm not sure if you've already decided on the actual circumstances regarding their past and future, Mr. GM.

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Re: Jo-dahn the Man Witch

Post  Bella on Wed May 30, 2012 9:25 am

I have ideas Smile
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