Monday, June 17, 2019

135 - "The Beautiful Cathedral" - Korr - A Tale of Heroes

Here's how you can read the story a week (two scenes) ahead of everyone else!


Korr stepped out of the fast rain and into the sheltered porch of the western facade of the huge cathedral. Parith followed, and immediately began shaking the water off of his dark brown cloak. Korr swung his cloak from his shoulder and held it up to drip onto the stone floor. The air was chilly, but the carved stone arches surrounding the porch broke the wind. Korr looked up at the tall ornate wooden double doors before them. Each was at least five feet wide and double that in height, with a large circular stained glass window under an arching top. The wood below was artistically carved with reliefs of angelic guards facing the three-star emblem of the church. There were two other full sets of doors, equally ornate, of equal sizes, in either side of the porch.

The porch itself was dark, with some colored light glowing through the windows. Korr looked over at Parith, who leaned on his quarterstaff, making chirping noises while looking into a large heavy bag with straps that slung over his shoulder. He dug into a pocket on the side and pulled out a small piece of jerky they'd bought on the way here.

"That thing is going to get us into trouble. You should have left it at the tower!"

The little lizard's head shot up out of the bag and snatched the meat out of Parith's fingers, then slurped it down, shaking its head. Parith jerked his hand away from the teeth with a look of surprise. "But the lightning was scaring him!"

Korr sighed. He found himself doing that a lot since he was with Parith. He quickly turned away and grabbed the door handle. As large and thick as the doors were, he was surprised how easily and smoothly they opened. They stepped in and moved through the entry foyer.

Korr looked up with awe at the high, brightly lit nave. He took in the intricate carvings on the capitals of the pillars lit by illuminated oculi, and the detailed paintings of the clouds between the dark skylights.

"So, where do we go?" Parith asked, snapping Korr's focus back.

"Oh, uh, I'm not sure." They began to walk carefully along the aisle under the arches formed by the supports. As they walked, Korr looked past the pillars into the pews in the nave. There was hardly anyone there. They were obviously not holding services, but he'd thought there would have been more people there. The few that he saw were not sitting or praying, either. Most were walking about the cathedral and talking quietly to each other.

"Do you feel a little underdressed?" Parith whispered.

Korr looked at him, confused. "Should I?"

"Well, what people there are, here, are all primped up in wealthy finery, silks and ruffles."

Korr looked at his simple shirt and roomy traveling pants. "Hmm. I hadn't noticed. I suppose we are." He walked on, then pointed, "There's one more like us."


"Over there, in the pews. The girl. She looks more like she's been traveling." He pointed to a woman with deep red hair and a dark cloak leaning back on the pew, starting up at the ceiling, her arms across the backrest. Her posture seemed very casual for such an ornate and solemn setting.

"Yeah, she doesn't look so refined, either," Parith observed.

Korr and Parith walked further up the aisle. He heard a flurry of rapid footsteps, growing louder, like they were descending a staircase. A bustle of brother monks in dark robes rushed out of a hallway opening in the right wall of the aisle, between two buttress pillars.  They hurried through the aisle, coming toward Korr and Parith, conversing in hushed voices. Quiet as they were, their steps echoed through the vast expanse on the cathedral.

We've upset them! They're coming to throw us out!

The monks swept on past Korr and Parith, rushing between them like they had been rocks in a stream. Parith looked at Korr, confused, and they both shrugged.

One more monk stepped past, lagging behind the others, but also not moving as fast. Korr reached out to him. "Your pardons, sir--"

The man turned. He was young and thin, and his robe was baggy, altogether too big for him. "Yes?" he smiled.

Korr straightened and regained his composure. "Could you help us find your records hall?"

He nodded at Korr. "Certainly! I just came from there. This way!" He started walking back toward the hallway opening. Korr and Parith followed.

As they turned, the brother asked, "Are you looking for your heritage? Marriage records? Your birth perhaps?"

Korr thought he heard a muffled chirping from behind them, and he glared at Parith, who clutched his bag and whispered softly shushing noises. The brother, turning and starting up a curving stairway, didn't seem to notice.

"Actually, we're interested in Ascendency Ceremonies. It would have been years ago. Thirty or forty, perhaps." Korr and Parith followed up the steps.

"Oh! Those would be historical records, then. You must forgive us. Today has been a very busy day. It's a meeting of the Concilio Episcopi--that's the Bishop's Grand Council--and all of us clerks have been chasing errands all day!" It seemed to Korr that the brother enjoyed talking. They came out into a hallway and turned to their right. Another line of monks were coming toward the stairs. To the right were a long row of doors, and to the left were rain-streaked windows looking out over the dark cloister courtyard. "The meetings are just ending for the day. Now it's time for supper!"

Korr interjected, "I apologize. We will come another day."

"Pfft! Nonsense! I'd much rather help in the library than the kitchen!"

A large black shadow suddenly blurred the window, rushing up over the roof. All of them jumped back, surprised. Instinctively, Korr moved his feet into a solid stance.

"What was THAT?" the brother shouted.


This continues the story of the heroes in Wynne, in Twynne Rivers, in the world of The Hero's Tale, Family Friendly RPGs. Here's more info on The Hero's Tale, and family friendly RPGing. If you like this story, support us at our Patreon!
Thank you: Chet Cox, Genevieve Springer!

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