Expelled from Paradise, Saved from the Sea of Souls
Reckoning Morn, 6104 RTR (22 Nov 2001) Alptraum dreams of Paradise … and less pleasant places.
(Alptraum) (Dream Realms) (Nordika) (A Dream of Seven Sisters) (Spheres of Magic) (Sylvania)
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Alptraum falls asleep in the room at the Blackshire Inn, and dreams of a magical place, Paradise, and of an angelic Eeee that sadly tells him that he is not allowed there … that he must go to "the other place". He then is pulled into a dark and dreary realm, which he soon learns is the Sea of Souls – a greyish expanse of storming clouds, and a sea composed of half-formed shades of the dead. He tries to flee this place, but cannot. He recognizes some of the faces – including that of the shade he saw the night before, Nachtbrise. He touches the fingertips of her shade, and is transported to another place. He finds himself in a cottage, and he witnesses Nachtbrise's final moments. She bids him to pass on a message for her, and he promises to do so. He then finds himself back in the Sea of Souls, but free to fly once more. However, he spies a tumbling figure coming down from the stormclouds – a cheetah girl that reminds him of the thief he almost caught earlier. Rather than flying out, he intercepts the falling cheetah, and upon touching her, is once again "transported" – this time to some place alongside the highway outside Blackshire Village. It seems that she can see him, even as she lies dying, and pleads with him not to let her die like this. As he wrestles with the idea about whether that's even possible, the dream ends.

Alptraum awakens back in the inn, and immediately rushes out, realizing that the same storm that was starting in his dream is starting at this very moment. He flies out, heedless of the rain, searching for the spot he saw, and at last finds the unconscious, bleeding cheetah in an area of ruins outside the settlement of Kurai Town. He binds her wounds and takes her to a small inn nearby, unable to fly with her back to Blackshire. There, a shaman treats her, and Alptraum spends the night in the common room.

The next morning, Alptraum's parents, the sheriff, and his friend Hexen show up to find him there. Unkind words are exchanged between the sheriff and Alptraum, but Alptraum nonetheless conveys the message he was given from Nachtbrise Darken, for Torano – Sheriff Torano Darken. The sheriff indicates that the cheetah Alptraum rescued is a local trouble-maker, and that it's clear that the gypsies were not involved in this theft after all.

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GMed by Greywolf

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