Guild Wars Kira

The personal musings of a simple woman from the hills of Ascalon who took up the bow and arrow to defend her nation and ended up saving the world. Three times.

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Location: Inland Empire, CA, United States

Wednesday, June 28, 2006


I feel bad about not writing in my magic diary lately, but I have a good excuse. I have been feeling under the weather lately. It's a good thing my little sister is a monk or I might be worse off. She's tried everything from Karei's Healing Circle to Mend Condition to the lamented Mending. She's a wonder with magical ailments, but everyday, ordinary affliction are a little more difficult.

Anyway, with the terrible heat getting to me, I haven't been out of the guild hall much. Ever since my birthday party out in Quarrel Falls. Poor Sparky, my new baby fungal wallow, hasn't had much opportunity to get out and explore, but he's been good company.

I shall try to update you more as I feel better. Or you could drop by my bedroom and listen to me moan.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

The Highs Are High, But The Lows...

Prince Rurik is not one to plot, plan, or worry about a situation. When some wrong comes to his attention, he will do what it takes to correct it without hesitation. When he discovered that soldiers where being held captive, he charged out into the ruins of Surmia to save them. When he saw the Charr defiling his childhood home of Drascir, he went to drive them out. And when, in those ruins, we came across Stormcaller, the mouthpiece of the great horn of King Doric, we knew he would next lead us to Rin.

We struck out from Nolani, devastating the forces besieging the academy, and crossed over the wall into the fallen capital. Rurik blew the mighty call and the heavens opened up, like tears from the gods for our wasted country. The Charr panicked and we fell upon them with our fury. In the end, even the Charr general, Bonfaaz Burntfur, fell to my arrows. The enemy was driven back and the tide of war had turned.

But the prince is not one to plot, plan, or worry about a situation. When the king returned to his capital, Rurik demanded that we lead the Ascalon people to the protection of Kryta. As before, Adelbern refused to seek help from the age-old enemy. So at the moment of our greatest victory, Rurik was cast out of the kingdom and we had only to follow.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Into The Breach

One of my favorite places in Ascalon now is an area beyond the Northern Wall that everyone refers to as the Breach. It's not a particularly attractive place since it is as blasted and ruined as any place in the kingdom. There is even a river of tar flowing through it. No, the reason I am drawn to the Breach is that the area has an irresistible pull on those Charr looking to hunt my fellow citizens.

Even a few years after the Searing, the Charr see this as the primary staging area for their continued assaults. They are held in check only through the persistence of Duke Barradin and his Vanguard, based in Piken Square. And the occasional hero, such as myself.

I see the Breach as a personal challenge. An awful great number of Charr wander the area and I want to see how fast I can kill them all. Sometimes I want to see how many carvings I can loot from their corpses. And sometimes, I want to remind them that they may have bloodied the kingdom, but they have not beaten us.

So particular fun, there is a deep depression south of Piken where many Charr tend to congregate. I like to stand on the rim and rain arrows on the beasts. Oh, good times.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Dark Side Of Adventuring

I am going to share with you the deepest, darkest secret of adventuring. Your life is not in jeopardy for knowing this, so don't shy away. However, your delusions are about to be shattered.

Adventuring is all about getting rich.

No one adventures out of some heroic purpose anymore. No one is looking for the thrill in defeating a foe. No one wants to lend a helping hand. Unless your hand is clutching a fist full of gold. That is what it takes get some attention from an adventurer.

I wish I could say that I'm above that, but no. I just spent about a half hour this past weekend in the open market at Lion's Arch to sell a Zodiac Longbow my little sister found. She was too busy keeping other treasure hunters alive in Urgoz's Warren to do it herself. I might have kept the bow for myself if Drago hadn't coughed up his newest flat bow. Someone gave me 40 platinum and a perfunctory "ty man" for the bow, which I'm assured will go directly to our cousin, Echo. Giygas of Vasburg Armory is going to give her a deal on a new enchanter's outfit. It didn't sound like a good deal to me, but we do owe her the money.

At least I can say I've saved the world between all these financial transactions. Twice, even.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Birth of the Brotherhood

Almost immediately after our foray from Fort Ranik to drive the Charr back across the northern wall, I found myself in the company of a young mesmer by the name Lord Lodi Dodi. While the veracity his nobility may have been dubious at best, there was nothing about his character that one would find less than worthy. This illustration is of the two of us in the ruins of Ascalon, though the non-descript scenery does not remind me exactly where. You can also see me in my new set of Corwen's finest fur-lined armor. You wouldn't believe how hard it is to find a good source of fur in that wasteland.

So close was the bond between Lodi and I that we decided to form a guild of our own and declare ourselves a force for good in the world. Also, we really wanted a nice cape. We spent over an hour with Nolan of Ascalon City deciding on the right mix of colors, shapes, styles, and emblems. We settled on a field of light and dark blues with a crossed rose and saber emblem in silver.

If there was one point of friction between Lodi and I, it was his youthful sense of humor. By youthful, I mean stupid. I'm not all that old, but people have commented on my maturity. Lodi wanted to name the guild the Terrible Unit of Red Deathdealers or the Crimson Union of Noted Travelers, knowing that Baron Egan would register our guild with an official abbreviation. On top of that, our cape wasn't even red!

Thank goodness I was able to convince him to accept our current name, the Brotherhood of Stone, though I did not inform him that the abbreviation entered would be "tBoS." Thus, the Brotherhood was born.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

People Only War When It Is Convenient

Standing on the ramparts of Fort Aspenwood, I remembered the words that rang throughout House zu Heltzer. "The Luxon curs are approaching our hallowed forests! We must meet them with all the violence we can muster!" I came here ready to defend this people to whom I swore my allegiance, only to find the battlefield nearly deserted. The few people here were standing around, chatting amongst themselves or dancing.

"What happened to the war?" I asked.

An assassin nearby answered, "Not enough Suxons on the other side."

So Fort Aspenwood was safe for now, if only because the enemy could not be bothered to show up for the fight. Laziness, it seems, is the true secret weapon of Kurzicks.

Monday, June 12, 2006

What I Learned From The Marauders

One of the first things I did upon arriving in Cantha was seek out any new archery techniques that were not common to my homeland. If you were under the assumption that everyone drew a bow the same, let me clear up your delusions now. No matter where you go, people do things differently. A lot of the basics may be the same, but there is no telling what people will do beyond that.

Take the marauders' technique, for instance. The mechanics are simplicity itself once you overcome your preconceptions. Basically, the archer mentally prepares, instead of just one shot, an entire sequence of attacks. What you lose in flexibility, you gain in power ten fold. So easy, but so devastating as well. It is certainly the most useful skill I've learned in this strange land.

As an amusing side note: I've never once met a marauder. I've traveled almost the length and breadth of two continents, and nary spotted a one. I learned the skill from a woman by the name of Michiko I met up in Kaineng Center. Very smart woman, if a little harried. There are always people around her ready to pay for help. Anyway there is a lesson to me learned here: no matter how good your technique, it may not be enough to keep your people from being lost to the Mists.

(That last sentence may have been a little melodramatic, but my little sister hasn't told me how change anything in this magic diary yet. Please pretend I didn't write that.)

Friday, June 09, 2006

The Price Of Our Hubris

It was just after my formal acceptance to the Ascalon Academy that the Charr made their apocalyptic assault on the kingdom. There were many signs of activity recently among the beasts. I had been sent into the catacombs to discover how they were crossing under the wall. And I went to the northlands to assess their positions. But there was no warning for what would eventually befall us.

So here I am two years later, standing in the ruins of Old Ascalon. Prince Rurik had me running all over the lands, lending support where I could. But I was never able to do enough. The Charr kept coming and my friends kept dying.

The first sign that something might change occurred when Zain, the ambassador from Kryta, arrived outside the city. He and Rurik discussed Kryta offering of help to push back the Charr, but King Adelbern would hear nothing of it. Distrust between the two nations still ran deep, even in the face of total annihilation. And the rift between Rurik and the king signaled greater problems to come.

Even in the face of all this, I was finally coming into my own. People had things that needed done and they turned to me for help. I learned a number of new skills including my first ritual to summon a nature spirit to guide my arrows. It was a heady and confusing time, and I loved it and hated it all the same.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

On Dancing

As much as I enjoy roaming the countryside, making the world safe from the Mursaat, the Afflicted, and aloe seeds, there are times when I have to put my bow down and relax. Thank goodness there always seems to be a dance party around to unwind. And even if there isn't a party to be found, you can start one pretty fast just my starting to dance yourself. People are more than willing to join in.

My distant Canthan cousin, Asuka, was telling me about a dance party she recently attended in, of all places, the monastery on Shing Jea Island. Not what one would think of as a party destination, but they attract a wide cross-section of students. She joined a fellow elementalist in a little number. There were a few assassins who could not get their act together. If you've seen an assassin dance, you would understand how difficult that can be. Good with the knives, but can't find a beat to save their lives. And there was a chorus line of ritualists with their spirit minions all dancing in nothing but their undergarments. She said it was a wild time.

I was too busy perfecting my vampiric knowledge in the arenas to attend. I have some pretty wicked moves of my own I would have like to have shown them. If you ever see around Tyria, don't be afraid to ask. I can get a party started in no time.

Monday, June 05, 2006

My Favorite Bows: Drago's Flat Bow

Have I made it any secret that I love bows of all shapes and sizes? Each bow is unique and each has its own quirks and quibbles. But there is not one bow that I've owned that I could not find a place for in my life. However some bows have proven to be more useful than others. And of all my bows, this one may be the one that has held my attention the longest.

Drago Stoneherder is one of the least friendly dwarves you might have the misfortune to meet. That's saying something considering the whole of the Stone Summit. Dagnar Stonepate might have been a real jerk, miscreant, and attempted regicide, but he was no Drago. I heard a tale about a group of dredge who were so fed up with Stoneherder's ill temper that they burrowed to the other side of the world. I haven't seen the hole, but that would explain a lot.

So although there isn't much to say kindly about Drago, he did know his bows. The flat bow itself is massive. I haven't compared them side-by-side, but it looks to be taller than my little sister. If you think that's big, remember that I don't call her my little sister because she's younger than me. She's tiny. But the bow is still huge.

It's that massiveness that make it so powerful. And arrow fired by the bow can punch through just about anything. There was a warrior once who seemed intent on chasing me clear across Fort Koga until I punched him full of holes. And he had been so proud of his armor too.

Of course, now I hear the Drago as devised an even more powerful weapon. I guess he felt lonely after I took this one away. Some dwarves never learn.

Friday, June 02, 2006

The Things I Have To Do

Being an adventurer is not as glamorous at it may seem. Sure, there's the killing of things. You get to defend people and assault the occasional enemy fortifications. And once I beat a dragon into submission. But then there are the other things.

Any time an adventurer shows up, it's like people lose all ability to do anything for themselves. They stand there and whine about how they are so helpless. And they want me to do the stupidest things: take this there, go get this and bring it back here, go talk to a bunch of people and tell me what they say.

Mary Malone took the prize for the strangest request during my Academy days. She left her basket of apples out in the orchard because she was scared of the spiders, and she asked me to get it back. To be fair, they were big spiders. But I don't think I'll be volunteering to carry fruit ever again.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Fort Aspenwood, As Long As I'm Complaining

The Luxons can have it. It's not like the Kurzicks have any interest in holding the place. Have you seen the defenses there? Each gate is guarded by three men. Three! If the gate was made of iron or steel, or maybe that stone they have so much of, three might be sufficient. But no, the gates are made of glass. It only takes the Luxons one shot from a siege turtle cannon and the gate crashes down. Doesn't that seem like the best place to develop the ultimate weapon?

I guess Count zu Heltzer is not a complete moron as he seems to know that something is amiss at Aspenwood. He is so worried about the situation that he is asking literally everyone he talks to for help defending the fort. And by asking everyone, you get the expected results. The reinforcements I've met are varyingly self-interested, confused, or completely uncooperative. When the Luxons press their attack, some panic and run around without any inclination as to how to defend the gates. Some charge the enemy forces maniacally and usually die in an ignoble fashion. Some just hide in the fortress and collect their pay from the survivors.

And yet, the Kurzicks always refortify, begin construction on Gods' Vengeance, and pray to their silent deities that someone who is not an idiot will deliver them from the Luxons. If I was Count zu Heltzer, I think I'd invest in stronger gates instead.