Continuing to prepare your group for their upcoming journey, Doyenne Nazena gathers you all for for one final lesson. As before, please feel free to post any in character questions or comments down below and any out of character questions or comments in the forum thread .
Nazena’s study comes into hazy view around you. You cannot help but think the disorientation passes faster this time, or perhaps you’re simply getting used to it. You look around and nce again notice Jayden and Ashling are not present, though Ethan is here this time. The Doyenne herself already stands in the center of the room. She turns towards Simon and Ethan.
“Simothi, Torsirserr, I assume your companions still need to sleep, do they not?” A cold note of annoyance in her voice.
“My apologies for their absence, Doyenne. Jayden is resting little these days.” Ethan says, as politely as he can.
Simon speaks up, “I’ll make sure to once again pass on your teachings and next time-”
“This will be our final lesson.” Nazena says, interrupting Simon. “And I think it best we dive straight in, I have every confidence in you to teach your fellows.” Simon nods to her. Nazena begins pacing around the center of the room as she continues. “Today will be more complex than any of our other lessons. We will be discussing the dreambound and the dreaming magics we and the dreamborn can wield. I expect there will be many questions, and I want to make sure we touch upon them all. Unless there is anything that must be dealt with before…?” Nazena looks around the room questioningly. Seeing no response, Nazena continues.”Then let us begin. We’ll start with the origins of the dreambound. The first of us were dreamwalkers who dove deeply enough into the dreaming realms that they began to tap its power, learning from the dreamborn natives. Much like druids bond themselves to the land, we bound ourselves to the dream itself…”
“To be clear, I can speak only of what I know. The greatest powers of my peers and even some of the more esoteric dreaming magics are likely unknown to me. Some of the greatest powers of the dreambound noted in my texts may even only be theories, so few ever reach such heights of power…” The Doyenne pauses for a moment as she sits down in her chair, an errant thought distracting her before she dismisses it. “Now then, are there any questions?”
The room is silent for a moment. “There’s…much in there to unpack.” Simon finally says, “But, one question that may honestly be irrelevant strikes me the most – the Dreambound can collect dreamstuff? The same thing that faeries gather for their Queen?”
The Doyenne lets out a short laugh. “You would focus on that.” Nazena nods. “Yes, we can. Though, truth be told, I’m not sure who learned to do it first. Given the Faerie Queen has been a part of our world for time immemorial, I’m inclined to believe we stole that trick from her. Either way, we tend to do it infrequently, given the process leaves the sleeper drained.”
“Much like when the faeries drain a sleeper?” Simon asks.
The Doyenne nods. “Very similar, yes. Back when Keld used to war with the other nations, my grandmother would drain dreamstuff from crippled or sickly slaves until they expired. But, today, I refuse to visit such tortures upon my own people or our allies.” Nazena waves her hand as she speaks, as if dismissing the very notion.
”...comforting.” Ethan says under his breath, though loudly enough to be heard across the room.
“Wow, it super sounds like your grand ma-ma and my daddy would really get along.” Jessy says, her distaste obvious.
“I might be diving be off topic, but given the amount of time I’ve spent studying the fae I feel I must ask it.” Simon says, pressing on despite the distractions. “The faeries use dreamstuff as a sort of food, much like the nectarthat bees gather. I’ve also read treatises examining the substance that theorized Oona might use it to learn the dreams of influential individuals. I’m very curious, what exactly do the Dreambound use it for?”
Nazena pauses for a moment, gathering her thoughts. “It has four uses for us. Most commonly, we use it to enchant Dreamborn items – that is, make enchantments capable of holding Dreaming magics. Much like the few Dreamshards possessed among you. Secondly, while on the Dreamscape itself, a Dreambound can be easily warp dreamstuff into most any raw mundane material you could desire. How the faeries feed on it while yet on Creed, I’m uncertain. But, given the Dreamscape offers no food or other survival materials, save what you might find in dreams, it can often be a worthwhile backup. Third, we can use it to view the dream it was drawn from, but this is generally viewed as a waste given how easily we can accomplish this with other methods. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, we use it make dream stones.”
“Dream stones?” Ethan asks.
“White banded purple agate, Ethan.” Simon says, “Do you recall how the veins in our Dreamshards turn white when we use it? It looks much like that.”
“Ah! Right, you were just talking about that. Sorry. Though…wait, question.” Ethan turns towards the Doyenne. “The Dreamshard turns black and spins now, does that mean anything?”
Nazena nods. “Indeed it does. Black banded purple agate is tied to nightmares and, more specifically, the Nightmare itself, and is known as Kalmani – the dark gem. It has fewer uses that dream stones, but is necessary for some of the darker dreaming magics. The spinning indicates he’s not on the same plane as you.”
“Doyenne,” Simon begins, a hesitancy in his voice. “I’m a bit confused. I thought you said the Dreamsage was hoarding the dream stone Dreambound need to traverse the Dreamscape? If you can make it…surely the dreams of vermin or something else could be used, if it’s such a necessity? Or the dreams of Crafters or other Beings of Power, given we’re resilient to the lethargic effects?”
“That’s…” Nazena pauses, weighing the question. “Yes, I suppose that’s worth clarifying. I said Bayul was hoarding purple agate, and I literally meant the raw stone itself – Dreamer’s Rest has the greatest abundance of the stone on Creed. While dream stones exist in nature, most of it is made by carefully combining quantities of the dreamstuff with that purple agate. Further, dreamstuff is a byproduct of imagination, something most non-sentient species lack in the sufficient quantity we would need.
“Beings of power…we’re getting quite off topic, but I suppose that’s worth discussing as well. Beings of power don’t feel the lethargic after being harvested for dreamstuff quite simply because you’re extremely difficult to gather any real power from. The same is true for anyone of sufficient strength – your minds are just too resilient to the process. I imagine that faeries almost purely do it out of Oona’s interest in what your dreams contain, as the dreamstuff itself would contain little to no power – that is, little to no nutrition for them. But fragments of the dreams could still be viewed.”
“Fascinating. I had no idea, thank you, I’ll have to get that gem back to the Houses.” Simon says, obviously pleased with the revelation. “If you don’t mind, that is?”
“Of course not, though I’d be surprised if they didn’t already know. It’s a largely irrelevant detail.” Nazena says.
“So, wait, gotta jump in here.” Jessy says, leaning forward in her seat. “Getting this dreamstuff, you’re literally tapping a dude’s imagination like you’d drink blood from a vein? And it fuckin’ kills people? I’m super shocked there aren’t more of you in Klurikon, seems like you’d fit in.”
Nazena sighs. “Being Dreambound requires an emotional balance that many cannot muster, something Klurikon does not encourage. We are the stewards of dreams and the caretakers of imagination, those who seek this path for wealth or fame often falter on their first step. That said…” Nazena pauses for a moment,”yes, even our small family has those who favor cruelty and malice. Some of our powers can attack a creature at their most vulnerable, that sort of skill inevitably attracts a darker sort. I am not surprised you would think your homeland a natural fit for some of us.”
The Doyenne looks around the room. “Are there any other questions?”
In character questions for Nazena can be raised in the comments section below, out of character questions can be raised in the forums. Any questions raised by the NPCs have effectively been answered already and included in the Nightmare section on the Dreamscape page. Once Nazena has fielded all of the groups’ questions, she prepares to send the gathered home.
“Any others? No?” Met with silence, the Doyenne nods. “Very well then. With that, I bring our final lesson to a close. From here on, I will be refocusing on my duties to the council – return to my manor when you’re ready to depart into the Dreamscape. Hopefully, with this information in hand, you will stand better prepared for what you might face than the fool Kradak did.” Nazena rises from her chair and moves to the center of the room. “Until then, champions.”
Nazena claps her hands together, and the wave of violet power quickly sends you back to your own dreams.