Storm Silverhand's Quieter Days
II: Allies and Contacts
By Ed Greenwood
Though she is known for her pleasant manner and reveals disapproval to most folk only by the deliverance of choice "hard looks" and firm words, Storm is no shrinking "reed-in-the-wind." Threats and displays of vanity, arrogance, and self-proclaimed superior status by others merely amuse the Bard of Shadowdale. She is as comfortable with young back-alley children or the ugliest of shunned, flea-ridden lepers and homeless outlaws as with royalty.
Storm likes to share hugs and kisses, seems incapable of shame, and never fusses or frets -- as she puts it, "Do what is needful, as well as you can, and worry not about what others, marching fate, or the gods do. We can all of us only accomplish and influence so much; be comforted in doing your chosen tasks well -- and in making the right choices."
In her Harper dealings, Storm usually employs a few trusted messengers whom she can communicate with at any distance (employing a more-powerful, nigh-unlimited-range version of the message spell). These intensely loyal Harpers are used to "talks with Storm" at odd times, and they drop everything to join her in an attack, deception, or mission of mercy -- or to undertake hazardous or strange tasks (such as move a particular headstone from this burial ground to under that tree, or waylay, hobble, and temporarily impersonate yon envoy from Cormyr).
Their ranks include the following:
- Roajaer Stelokh (CG male human Bard 3/Sorcerer 5; quick-tongued, handsome, acrobatic, a whimsical and pranksome "scourge of the ladies");
- Astel Rolmmaereon (CG female human Aristocrat 1/Rogue 3; tall and stunningly beautiful, of the wealthy self-styled nobility of Yhaunn, a hungry-for-adventure flirt and successful mercantile investor);
- Shanandra Longtree (NG female human Aristocrat 1/Bard 3; warm-voiced singer and master of the lute and harp, the very rich last living member of an aristocratic family that departed Tethyr generations ago to dwell in Neverwinter, and later relocated to Sembia to oversee extensive investments);
- Athangrae Hathgraunt (CG male half-elf Wizard 9; graceful and possessed of looks that easily allow him to impersonate female half-elves, a writer of romances who prefers deft and subtle spell use);
- Tarlammar "the Silent" Belthor (N male human Ranger 8/Shadowdancer 5; taciturn, lithe loner when he is not with Storm, whose entertainment is spying on humans around him).
- Storm also has an extensive network of non-Harper experts in the Dragonreach lands. Most are people she has aided in the past. She is apt to call on them at odd hours and without warning, to help her with small tasks. Just a handful drawn from their ranks include the following:
- Darth Thantokh (NG male human Expert 6/Warrior 8; gruff, balding, grizzled retired warrior, a veteran former mercenary who saw much Inner Sea service, now a superb locksmith and maker-of-chain in Saerloon);
- Thorn Rondreth (LN female human Expert 12; a pock-scarred, fat, and soft-spoken scribe, calligrapher, and forger [of signatures and seals only] who seldom leaves her cavernous upper rooms in a back street of Selgaunt and lives very simply, despite ever-increasing business);
- Selmur Helgrash (N gnome male Expert 15; a herbalist of Hillsfar who gets rich concocting strange-tasting "love potions" for rich fools, but works hard to perfect medicines, specializing in poison antidotes, of which he keeps one of the largest "ready to use" collections known to the Harpers);
- Alaemo Thriddyk (LN male human Expert 7/Diviner 4; a sage of Yhaunn whose particular expertise is monsters and their habits and abilities, but who also pays close attention to events and gossip in his home city);
- "Master" Albruth Thallow (NE male halfling Expert 3/Rogue 6; a wizened, limping, but astonishingly strong and very busy fence of stolen goods in Urmlaspyr who knows a wide number of shady characters in Sembia and Cormyr, and much of the whispered gossip about their doings -- which he shares only with Storm, being utterly discreet otherwise);
- Rhoegantle Malyth (CG male human Highknight 4/Ranger 7; a darkly handsome bastard son of Azoun IV raised in Suzail as a servant by a War Wizard and made a forester in his restless youth; now he is one of the most trusted agents of Alusair's regency operating in the northeastern areas of Cormyr and into the Dalelands, and he watches over the interests of Cormyr -- and increasingly, over the doings of the Bard of Shadowdale, with whom he has fallen hopelessly in love).
Storm Silverhand manipulates people without hesitation, viewing this practice as something all intelligent social beings do to their fellows -- but "rightful" only when the user ensures that "used" individuals are rewarded or aided in return.
The things Storm has a hand in can be extremely interesting to quite a few individuals. See what she has been up to recently in the next installment.
About the Author
Ed Greenwood is the man who unleashed the Forgotten Realms on an unsuspecting world. He works in libraries, writes fantasy, sf, horror, mystery, and even romance stories (sometimes all in the same novel), but he is still happiest churning out Realmslore, Realmslore, and more Realmslore. There are still a few rooms in his house with space left to pile up papers in . . .
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