Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

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Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:44 pm

((Continued from Chapter 1))



But it seems that the gods bore of allowing those still mortal to rest long in perfection ....






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(( Color key:  Objective narrative, Dae (the panther), Ramana, Ranara ))

(( Any comments, please mark them with ((OOC)) parentheses and color them in a sedate dull color, olive is good, to preserve immersion of the story, thank you. ))


Last edited by Ramana Jala on Tue Aug 18, 2015 6:51 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
Epic Level

Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:01 pm

Something is new and different with me.  A new consciousness has dawned on me, no longer am I just an unconscious creature, enjoying life in the moment, content for a soft warm bed and a good tasty meal.  I think, and I know that I think... I am, and I know that I am.  I am now more than I was, more than a mere creature of instinct.

And I perceive that my companion is also different.  The young female that many moons ago rescued me as a youngling from certain death at the fangs of vicious fish-people, and has cared for me and protected me ever since, something is different with her.  And what has happened to me is certainly related to what has happened to her.

As far as I can reckon with my newborn intelligence, something must have happened to my companion at Castle Greyskull.  She had declined to take me along on that exploratory expedition, with the usual attitude of not thinking that I could sneak well enough in small spaces, nor restrain my whims from setting me onto attacking something either fun or tasty.  It had been not too long after Lord Kastian had gone missing, and she had developed a persistent attitude of private despondence, and in hindsight perhaps a bit of recklessness.  Personally, I was somewhat glad for that dragonkin lord being gone, as he had greatly interfered with the attentions I desired from her, and his large winged bulk took up entirely too much of the bed.  But for her, the loss of him was obviously a sorrow that enviserated her soul, and she became totally without her purpose in life anymore.  When there was no one around but us two, she was inclined to bemoan the loss of whom she called her soul-mate, and I could feel her desperate longing to search for him, but with intense frustration of not knowing where to.

I probably should have shadowed her there to the castle, but the situation seemed not so unusual, and as for her attitude, my laissez-faire response to it was to feel that work would do her good, and my self-reliant companion would eventually get over this male, just as she had gotten over the others.  And so I stayed back around our camp, contenting myself with lounging and chasing the field mice between naps.  That kind of thing used to be most all that I cared for --a fun romp with the goal of a tasty morsel, then a soft bed, and an ear massage from my companion (an excellent masseuse).  But I was a much simpler creature then, before.

But let me not get ahead of myself.  This account is more about my companion, Ramana  --and how she became two persons.  And incidentally how I became even more linked with her, and acquired a different mind.  Just as she seems to change, back and forth, from a simpler creature to a more magical creature, so do I, along with her.  Our lives and our fates are linked.

I know that I must protect her.  It seems like the command of a god in my ear, to protect her.  And I vow to do so with all my being --with my panther teeth and claws, and by my new wits.




Last edited by Ramana Jala on Tue Aug 18, 2015 6:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Sun Jul 01, 2012 12:07 pm


Drowning in the sea of love ....................
Where everyone would love to drown .....
(Sara, Stevie Nicks)


Since my Lord Kastian disappeared, I must admit that I've been feeling desperate. Not since my first love Ammon left me, setting me on my own, have I felt so very desperate. Even more desperate than during our separation when I accidentally fell into this world. I'd thought that in Kastian I'd finally found someone to be what I needed, and someone who would want to stay with me, and have a long lifespan comparable to mine so as to live a long time with me. I painfully regret now that should have stayed at his side when he left for his sabbatical to the mountains. But he'd been sulking in a foul mood ever since the rust monsters ate his glorious new armor, and he told me that he knew that he was not presently good company, so I should go ahead with my ranger duties and all, and after some time away to think and meditate he'd be back soon.

But he never came back. I went looking for him, for months I've searched, with nary a sign of him. I've feared that he'd been overtaken by some menace and killed, but he is a strong red dragon kin and Knight of Falazure, and well-equipped to handle himself under any circumstance. I tracked what few signs and reports of him that I could find to the mountains of the Rift, and there his trail had simply disappeared. The Copper dragon clan didn't know what had happened to him, and they always know most everything that goes on in that area, despite having to spend so much of their attentions upon repelling the invasive Orcs. Lord Kastian was simply gone. As if he'd just stepped off of this plane, fallen through a dimensional hole like the one that had brought us each to this world.

Kastian had the kind of presence that I hadn't experienced since Ammon. Megiltura [swordmaster], as I call my old mentor and master Ammon, was my shadow angel, and his eyes were hypnotic sapphire tunnels beckoning to a secret deep dark sea. I could fall into his eyes, drop into his dark depths, and surrender to be lost in an enveloping darkness that felt so wonderfully self-transcendently peacefully blissful. Then returning, reborn into a simple joyful state, to devotionally serve him, was my supreme happiness. Even to just be in the shadow aura that he could extend to envelop me was so soothing and surrounded me with the peace of belonging. What I had found with my god Ammon was a complete sweet bliss of devotion, a surrender of myself and exaltation of my soul in an ecstasy of worship. It was truly a spiritual experience, a self-transcendence that allowed me to leave myself behind, a death of my little limiting self with a full opening of my heart and stilling of my mind which released me from any confusion or stress or concern and transformed me into a joyful child, simple and free and transfigured in devotion to Him. Once I'd experienced this submission of my ordinary self to a dominant higher power, I could never again be truly content without the man or god as whose devotee I could find this liberation into the freedom of transcendental bliss.

After Megiltura left me, out of my desperation I instituted a practice of deliberate death in an attempt to re-achieve that bliss. On the island where I lived at the time, there were outcroppings of unusual planar deposits of several types, and one type, which was covered with ancient magical runes, acted like a soul anchor. They were called Stones of Return. If one touched one of these particular rune stones, upon catastrophe one's soul and body would be drawn across planes to the focus of that stone to be reunited, and thus one would be rescued from death. (For an Aenean analogy, it was as if you were processed unconscious through the Great Hall of Zolares and then plopped back into the Material at an Astral Anchor point, except I don't know if the Stones of Return were Astral foci.) When I'd first arrived at the island I'd heard about them, and I'd gone right away to find one, thinking better to sign up than not, just in case. So, when first one then another unfortunate accident sent me back to the Stone, I had discovered that I felt a surrender of sorts, and peace, whenever I was claimed by death --when my will, that had been fighting so strongly up to that point, was paralyzed in a shock of disempowerment and forced to just let go. At that point any choice was ripped away from me, and I fell into a void of darkness. That black void was somewhat like the calming blackness that I had felt whenever I had been surrrounded by Ammon's shadow or fallen into his eyes in surrender. So I had thought, that maybe death might be the next best way to get me there, and with the Stones of Return, it would not be just one chance. I could practice again and again, until I purified myself of all of my complications and limitations, purified myself of myself. And so maybe I could find a way to that state of bliss all by myself. Thus I used to utilize this phenomenon of these planar stones in a religious practice of striving for self-transcendence, by trying to let go of myself and surrender at the point of death, in the hope that I could be released from my small limited impure self and find that self-transcendent bliss, such as I had known under Megiltura, then bring that high pure state back with me when the rune stone reassembled my soul and body. I had thought then, that would be my new purpose, obviously why I had been led there to that land with those magic planar stones, they were an opportunity to purify my soul, towards a new rebirth....

But it didn't go as smoothly as I had hoped. It turned out that such a practice was only a stopgap technique in attempting transcendence, with great difficulty in maintaining the required continuity of consciousness throughout the whole procedure -- as I woke up alive and usually somewhat mentally reset, but more often not with so much of any pure blissful state, but in more of a pained and wounded one, as if I'd been through the mill, so to speak. I tried this avenue for a while, but after two subsequent developments, I pretty much gave up on the practice of dying as a pathway to self-transcendence.

The first development was that of coming to utilize more of my relationship with my psychic water elemental companion Oremaa, who had been mysteriously gifted to me at Crater Lake, back there on the island. When I was first utterly heartbroken with the departure of my beloved Megiltura, I went to that lake that was very special to both him and to me, which held a memorial to Ammon's lost great love, Fade. As I poured out my grief at the loss of what I had hoped for with him, to the point that I was laying there limp in despondency, I happened to espy something shiny laying near me in a puddle of water. I picked it up, and saw that it was a silver ring, sporting an iridescent bluish moonstone that looked just like a bulging drop of pure water. Inside the band were engraved two Elven words, "O Mellon" [A Friend]. I heard a whisper in my mind to the effect that 'to ask for a friend would obtain one', so I called out the words, "I need a friend." In response, the waters of my tears flew from my face, and, along with a bit of the lake water, seemed to gather up into a water elemental, who stood over me enveloping me in a refreshing spray of cool water, its mirror face shining serenely down upon me. Thus Oremaa came to me --and I still believe that it was the great kindness of Fade's immortal spirit that combined my tears and the soothing waters of the lake to give me a friend who could be there for me and help me, mostly through emotional turmoils, but also in other types of emergencies. I named her Oremaa, meaning literally 'mirror of the unconscious', or more poetically, 'soul mirror', because she had the unique and peculiar ability, that if one stood within her shower of water and looked into her mirror face, she could show oneself to oneself. Her iridescent mirror face of water would reflect images of memories and things hidden in one's heart. She was like a psychological counsellor, and a protector, all in one. Her activating essence, focus, or soul, if you like, was held in that ring, that I wore always from that moment on, at first out of sentimentality, then out of coming to understand how useful she was. Whenever I needed a friend, she would appear, and help me in whatever difficulty or loneliness I was experiencing. She seemed to be linked to my emotions, and would respond to my emotional needs, whether it was a need to be soothed and reassured, my self-confidence bolstered, and learn something more about myself, or to repulse and drown some threatening hostile. I had grown very fond of her, and she had helped me a lot with understanding myself. But since I dropped into Aenea without anything on me but my bare body and mind, her magical ring didn't come through with me. I really miss her.

Then the second development, that pretty much cured me of my religious practice of dying, was my relationship with Helicon, a human gentleman whom I found very companionable and able to help me with my needs. Interestingly enough, when Helicon and I got into that trouble with the Ilithids, the incident that inflicted my head wound which became contaminated with 'Rift Stone' dust --material from another one of those types of planar stones as I've mentioned were prevalent about that island-- out of that I discovered a kind of shadow state that I could access, similiarly to how I used to fall into the encompassing darkness of my first master. Because of the Rift Stone contamination, I apparently acquired a shadow 'taint' or 'touch', and I could now see and access the Shadow Plane. Over time I learned how to do this consistently at will, and after a while even travel through it, 'jumping' over distances in the Material. This ability really took off when I landed in Aenea, as here planes seem a bit more accessible and rather slippery, and I became able to jump much further distances than before. Letting myself phase into the Shadow Plane is activated by a feeling of dropping into the darkness, shunning the light and feeling towards the shadows, seeking and wanting the darkness, such as I used to seek Megiltura's enveloping darkness. Originally, any fear response would also take me into the Shadow Plane, as if either it was some protective escape response to a perceived danger, or maybe there were some affinity of negative energy types. I can return entirely to this Material Plane by concentrating on a light source, seeking and wanting the light, as the shadows on the Shadow Plane of the light sources on the Material Plane are but faint cool echoes, but they provide a focus and a pathway to phase back to the domain of light and heat.

Unfortunately, Helicon was not long with me. He had it in his mind that he needed to develop some opportunites to be able to support me in the style he wished to, and so he went away, abroad across the sea, to find his fortune. After a while, I heard that the ship that he'd been on had gone down, and he was lost at sea and presumed dead. He was so sweet and good to me, it's such a shame.

One can see a theme here manifesting, again and again, in my life --Love, Surrender, Shadow, Darkness, Water, Death, Bliss.... One can see how, in my experience, that no matter in which order these principles are arranged, all seem to be part of the same thing, and they all feel the same to me. All seem connected to a deep reservoir of emotion within myself, from which springs a power, or a controller of power, that I still have yet to fully fathom. (I have also been coming to realize that these domains are like Planes of their own, planes of experience, with experience available in each according to their own nature... but that is a philosophical discussion for another time....)

Fortunately, even though I was heartbroken to lose my dear Helicon, it was not long after that when Kastian came into my life. Kastian and I sealed our relationship at that same lake, where we both expressed our needs that the other could fulfill, namely, my need to be possessed and be devoted to someone, and his desire to possess me. Thus in our great passionate need for each other we consummated our union. It troubled me not at all that he desired to own me like a dragon owns a most brilliant gem, for my noble red dragon Knight of Falazure was very chivalrous and kind and loving, and his lordly manner meshed well with my need to be a devotee. In fact, after we were at long last reunited from our separation of when I had fallen through the planes into this world, he told me that he had searched relentlessly for a way to me, speaking to me in beautiful words of love of how he had come to realize that I was more to him than just a mere possession, and was indeed the love of his life. That moment was the happiest of my life.

It greatly pains my heart to think of my beloved Kastian now. I've had dreams since losing him again.... like long ago such as I dreamt after losing Ammon. Dreams of searching for him but great frustration at not finding him, dreams of feeling that he has sailed so far away that I may never find him, dreams in where I sink to the bottom of a great sea of despair and only wish it were his eyes that I were drowning in. I have a gut feeling that Kastian is still alive, but somewhere else --and not by his own choice.

I've tried to hide my unhappiness and go on with my occupations, but my state of mind has especially impacted my ability to be creative in my dressmaking business. I've been asking everyone about how to reliably travel the greater planes, but it seems that only mages really can harness the power to do that kind of thing. I sometimes wish that I were a mage, so that could travel all the planes deliberately at will, as far as I might need to home in on the beacon of his soul, to find him and be reunited with my beloved dragon lord. But I am not a mage, just a ranger and a somewhat clever girl who can finagle just a little magic from time to time, and drop into and out of the Shadow Plane and the Astral Plane over fairly short distances, always within only one world. Maybe someday my Elven blood might at long last finally spark with the ancient magic, I only wish it were soon. But for now I can only pray that the gods might aid me to find my happiness again.






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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
Epic Level

Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Mon Jul 02, 2012 1:39 pm



(( warning: quest spoilers ))



But... let me compose myself... For now comes another mystery, that all this that I've been relating, as important as it all has been in itself, has only been a background to provide the context for another remarkable strange experience. What I will relate is a subtle mystery, one that I do not think perceivable to any other but myself, at least not at this time, but it is quite real in my internal perceptions. I do feel that some situation concerning it may develop further, and even overtly manifest, although I cannot at this time hazard any sort of guess at the how and what it may be that will come.

It's taken me a little time to piece together the sequence of events that happened during my visit to Castle Greyskull, but something unusual definitely happened. Although I hadn't gone deep into the castle before this, it started out seeming to be a routine enough expedition. As usual, the locals villagers weren't any more helpful than warning that terrible things inhabited the castle. From my previous reconnoiter, I knew that there were many undead about. But I had my entire bag of tricks with me and felt prepared for most anything. I left Kitty back at camp, because she is so impulsive and hard to control sometimes, trying to keep her continuously in sneak mode, as being a simple-minded animal she sometimes lacks the foresight to always be as sufficiently cautious as the situation might warrant. And also, if I were to have to crawl through any tight spaces in architectural rubble, she being a lot larger than me might be a real problem, as she can whine piteously enough to literally rouse the (un)dead, should she be separated from me by some impassable obstacle.

I had decided to not expend the effort to kill every single undead I came across, as sometimes that just gets so tedious, and it can tire me out to where my mind is not at its sharpest, before I need all my wits about me for what potentially might be a tricky situation deep in a stronghold. I didn't know what lay at the center of Castle Greyskull, but with the great numbers of undead milling around, it would more than likely not be inconsequential. I made it through a couple of floors of throngs of undead, skeletons mostly, and it hadn't been all that remarkable except for one that had been sporting a pretty interesting shield, so I took him down and lashed the shield to my pack to examine later.

Then after all that, I came across an area with golems of several types, including some flesh golems. Although I hadn't seen these before, as I stood in the shadows observing them I soon figured out what they were. They were different than zombies, but were in their own way a type of undead, an artificial undead, not animated by negative energies (I think), but animated by chemistry and mechanical parts. It made me wonder if there was some gnomish necromancer about.

Moving on through several rooms of various golems, I carefully opened a door to a central chamber and, as always, only peeked in just a tiny bit. I found beholders! Beholders in the same area with undead has always been a potentially hazardous situation for me, as they require different defensive armaments which I can't wear simultaneously. But a quick glance around that chamber didn't reveal any more undead, so I quickly closed the door before me and set to removing my anti-undead equipment and re-equipping myself with anti-beholder gear.

Then I went into the fray of beholders, and it went quite well for a while, as I left a great many of the huge eyeballs dead --and exuding goo across the chamber floor. Until one very large very sturdy very elder beholder got me somewhat flummoxed, backing me up against a door. My boots were slipping, covered in the goo that I'd picked up from my previous kills, and I just couldn't get out of the true sight of the creature. In my desperation, my hand found a door handle, and I opened the door. I had been intending to open it quite carefully, peek in, and perhaps slip in unnoticed by entering the shadows, in the hope that there weren't any more true sighted creatures in the new room, then quickly close the door against the bulk of the true sighted beholder that was after me. Or at least get a surprise running start through whatever was there on my way to some exit, or, find some running room to double back and get past the huge pesky beholder attacking me to run out the way I had come. And it might have gone that way, except... unfortunately, a couple of things happened. Firstly, the beholder was targeting so many sparkly rays at me, that I couldn't hardly see anything... and then, I slipped, bad, and my weight fell against the door --and it flung fully open, hitting the wall behind it with a muted thud...

Also unfortunately, this event was before I had discovered the great usefulness of Shadow Shield scrolls, and where to obtain them. Despite my usually robust fortitude for withstanding the various and sundry magical attacks of beholders, on this day Lady Luck would roll a fail for me, snake eyes of the metaphorical snake that would sneak up on me and bite me in the butt.

When I realized that the door was now wide open, I launched myself into the room, aiming to get behind the door, and trying to reach the shadow there to phase into the Shadow Plane. But I saw something moving quickly towards me, and I immediately recognized it as an undead, likely a lich. The elder beholder had pressed its huge bulk into the doorway, blocking the exit --except for the merest of space underneath its floating body-- and continuing to rain down its rays upon me. And the lich was very upset, I don't exactly remember if he actually said anything, but his attitude shouted that he was obviously very irritated at being disturbed there in his private sanctum, as he started to rain down his own spells upon me. This was bad, really bad, beholders and undead in the same room....

I went into dodge mode, whilst being targeted by the blasts of various rays and spells, and temporarily forsook trying to get behind the door, quickly deciding that I should try to get behind the lich instead, and see if I could both get out of the lich's targeting sights and get the Beholder to blast him instead. My magical gear seemed to be holding against the barrage for the moment, and so I started dancing with the lich. I dodged his spells and whatever weapon he was holding --I really can't recall what it was-- as I took a few whacks at him with my own weapons, as I still had my sword in my main hand and my anti-destructo-ray trident in my left. But he was hardly affected by my attacks, and I observed that it seemed that only the acid effect from my sword was sticking to him at all, and doing only the merest of damage. Neither did the beholder seem to be doing the lich much damage whenever the lich was caught in the beholder's barrage against me. I even managed to find a moment between barrages to quickly read off a dispel magic scroll, but it seemed to fail to do anything to the lich.

I was still holding my own through the fireworks, dodging and quaffing healing potions, and trying to think fast. I decided to try the beholder's side, and ran over close to it. If I could get rid of the beholder, I might could phase into the Shadow Plane and evade the lich. I whacked at the beholder, trying to get really close in to the folds of the big mushy creature, so that I would be too intimate with it for it to target me, and also maybe shielded from the lich's spells. I thought that if it kept floating, I could possibly wriggle under it, or, if I downed it, I could clamber over it. But even though I was doing it some damage, it seemed, like I said, unusually sturdy, although my attacks probably weren't very accurate, what with all the intense barrage of threats in the small room that I was having to keep aware of simultaneously. And damn those incredibly flexible eye stalks, as it was then that my luck ran out....




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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
Epic Level

Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:40 pm


Another few moments and I might have prevailed over the beholder. But as I was trying to climb up the mountain of flesh to gouge out its main eye, I slipped again and wound up on the ground. I again saw the low space under the beholder, and this time I noticed the shadow. Making a quick decision, I dove headfirst for the shadow, hopefully to use it to jump out of the place. I started to enter the shadow and felt it start to cling and pull on me to merge into its domain....

By the way, this feeling has been peculiarly different in Aenea than it has ever been elsewhere. Back on Toril, after I accidentally acquired a 'shadow taint' because of what happened to my head, I came to realize that I had a more-or-less permanently open personal planar gate and view to the Shadow Plane. My injury was right at my front hairline, and along with the effects of the riftstone contamination/poisoning, it also left me with mood swings and memory issues. It's lucky I survived at all --if it hadn't been for that portal engineer arriving just then and healing us in a hurry. Subsequently, I had some treatment that relieved some severe impairment to my vision, but then the next doctor I consulted, an Elven specialist, determined that even though the initial healing had restored the presence and function of brain tissue, it hadn't returned any non-redundantly-stored content, like memories. So great, I wouldn't remember what I couldn't remember. Then he went on to say that there could possibly still be a minute residue of riftstone crystal dust inside my brain, embedded in the prefrontal cortex and down near my optical nerves. If it were a few grains of ordinary sand or stone, it would be inconsequential, but a few grains of abyssal plane material would always exert a negative influence upon the material organism. Or, if not a residue, there was still a permanent poisoning and alteration of the tissues where the abyssal plane material had been. He went into some unnerving detail about the autopsies ordered by the king, on wildlife made mad by just exposure in the vicinity of rift stone deposits, and how their brains looked. He told me that the prefrontal cortex was very important for 'higher cognitive functions', memory, behavior, emotions, and the determination of personality.

So what actually nearly did drive me mad, was seeing two planes at once. But with great patient persistence over time, I've managed to sort them. I came to see the overlay onto and encroachment into the Material of the Shadow Plane, as a enhanced perception with a greater appreciation of the significance of the shadow aura around things. Back in Thain on Toril, I could easily obtain the obverse counterpart of the riftstone, the celestial stones, to somewhat counter the effects when such was needed or desired. But since landing in Aenea, I fortunately haven't had any severe symptons, which is good considering as I haven't seen any deposits about of celestial plane material.

I've thought about this ability and condition of mine for a long time, and I have a few theories. Postulate that the shadows are a place of lessened solar and positive energy. Positive or light energy resists the encroachment of negative or dark energy. So, the shadows are areas of less resistance to the domain of negative energy, and thus they seem to create a null space to more easily breach the containment between fields/domains and enable cross over (to enable full confluence rather than partial or shared confluence of domains). The point is, that ever since I've come to Aenea, my perception has been different from before. I still see the shadows as part of and portals to a universe of darkness, outposts if you will, but this is not a still landscape of objects, since Aenea, it's a river of energy. Before Aenea, to shadow-jump meant that I just 'retreated' from the Material to another universe, with the intention of my destination well-formed in my mind. This plane was generally very still --deathly still one could say-- and one could stroll though its void landscape of its distorted mirroring of our plane, if one desired to, but generally it's a pretty dismal place. Although it does have a very psychic-moon quality, the ability to visually reveal the darkness flitting around creature's souls....

But, the useful thing was that, as long as I am part Material still, the Shadow Plane will in some way tend to reject me after a while (even though a long soujourn theorectically would also be degrading my Material vehicle and connection), and so its acceptance of me was on a hair trigger, and controllable via my mental intentions. It became easy enough to do by concentrating on internally stoking fire and light, or dousing such. I could fully enter the domain of shadow by shunning or withdrawing myself from light, concentrating on the dark, muting my lifeforce and seeming to go on to another power source, so to speak. To travel, I would just run, but time ran differently there, so my run became more like a leap, to my destination. To return to the Prime Material, I would just locate the faint glimmer on the shadow plane of a light source on the Material, concentrate on it, and phase back to our domain of emphasis of light. Or even just mental concentration without an external focus would also do it, (although I did have to be careful to retain the stamina to be able to concentrate). I got so that I could literally do it in a flash, a mental flash. Emphasizing affinity to light would make it so that the shadow domain couldn't hardly wait to disgorge me out again. But in Aenea, all this has been a little different. Shadow-jumping here has been more like opening a gate onto the active vacuum pull of a great rushing river, which is crashing into a vortex towards a great dark well of energy. I fall in, with my intention formed of my destination, and it spits me out again when I'm there, usually popping me out into the darkest field of shadow in the vicinity. The trip takes one's breath away, but again it seems out of time, so the duration as measured on the material plane is instantaneous.

In any case, I digress....



Last edited by Ramana Jala on Sat Sep 01, 2012 3:39 am; edited 2 times in total
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Ramana Jala
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
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Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:43 pm

.... I started to enter the shadow and felt it start to cling and pull on me to merge into its domain.... then, as I made the intention to fall into it and translocate, I felt it not working. I belatedly realized that there were wards against planar travel in this part of the castle, and I wasn't going to be able to jump away. I cried out in desperation, the only words that I think that I'd actually spoken aloud during the entire intense battle, "O gods, for a mage!" At that instant, as my head and upper body were still enveloped in the shadow's field, the lich launched some major spell at me, and one of the beholder's eyestalks reached out and curled down to shoot me again with one of the many spells it had been pelting me with since the fray had been enjoined. And they both got me. I was caught in both some massive negative energy burst and some other draining-to-death ray. With my fortitude at an ebb, I had finally been overcome.

From here my recollection gets a little hazier, of the quality of a dream. As of course, I died. And went to the Great Hall of Zolares. Not my first trip there, but it felt very different this time. The first thing that felt different was the quality of my death transition. Prior to this, whenever I had started to make the trip to the Great Hall, as I surrendered to leave my material sensory vessel --that was of course always in great pain from being mortally wounded-- all painful sensations would fade and I would experience a peaceful sensation of floating up out of my body. But this time, instead of that rather pleasant transition of my soul detaching from my material vessel, I had a rather disturbing experience, like my soul was being torn into pieces. I wonder if this had to do with being hit by two different types of rays simultaneously. And I felt myself exiting not just from out of my chest, but it felt like a part of me was exiting via my head. Now that I recall, it felt actually like it was coming out from right at the site of that old head wound, the one contaminated with rift stone dust.

When I got to the Great Hall, I also felt different. I felt... lighter, and more at peace, as if I'd obtained my wish for purification and self-transcedence, and had lost a part of myself, some frustrated unfulfilled part of myself. Not a feeling of wholeness, but rather a feeling of diminishment and emptiness, albeit rather peaceful. As I lay there in the Great Hall, not feeling in any hurry to redeem my get-out-of-death-free gift token of Zolares, I looked up at the ceiling, and it seemed just like the vault of a starless night sky, open and endless and of the most beautiful blackest obsidian purity. But then as I lay there gazing up at the vista, I realized that I could see something wispy up there --then my eyes all of a sudden seemed to focus, and I realized that I was looking at a sea of some moving substance, that was so inherently dark that nearly no light would reflect to show texture, and so its slow churning was all but invisible.

Then I thought I heard voices. Even though I couldn't quite make out what they were saying, I had the distinct impression that they were discussing me. I strained to understand them, but could only catch a word here and there. I thought I heard someone say the word 'dae', the Elven word for 'shadow' --of course, don't we always dream in our native language?-- but I don't know if they were talking about my cat or about something else. Who those voices belonged to, I have really no idea, but if it wasn't a hallucination, it just might have been the gods, debating my fate.



Last edited by Ramana Jala on Fri Aug 31, 2012 5:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Ramana Jala
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:44 pm



I don't know how long I tarried there, trying to understand the voices, drifting mostly in a semi-conscious state. When I finally came back to full consciousness, all was quiet. I decided that my literal vacation was over and it was time for me to act. Redeeming Zolares' Gift token plopped me right back down where I'd left, although by this time the elder beholder wasn't blocking the door anymore. So I pulled the shadows around me to disappear from the Lord's sight, and led the true-sighted beholder out into the next room to deal with it. Then, with an escape route clear, I decided to see what I could do about the uppity lich Lord of Castle Greyskull. I hit at him for a few minutes, but he was still being difficult. After a while, more beholders started to encroach back into the adjoining room, so, as I was tired and not wanting to be trapped between the lich and an elder beholder again, I finally gave up and went back into stealth mode, and made my way out. The mad lich lost sight of me, and fortunately no true-sighted beholder was near enough to be interested in following me.

When I got to an area that I could shadow jump, I took that shortcut to outside of the castle. Then, after assuring myself that nothing was on my trail chasing me, I paused to look over my loot. I unstrapped the shield that I'd won, and it was so devilishly handsome that I slid my hand into its grip to try it out and strike a pose. It was at that moment that I realized that I'd made a terrible mistake. Inside the castle, I hadn't put my hand into its grip, so I had been unaware of its evil properties, that would have had me in their full grip should I have put it into mine. Holding it now, I felt the life nearly drain from my body, and I had just enough strength to teleport to Macedone to drag myself into the Temple of Fate. Fortunately, I had gotten there quickly enough, and the priest was able to destroy the cursed shield and free me from its vile aura. It was only much later that I came to the realization that the thing had been exerting negative energies upon me from the moment that I had lain my hands upon it, and I concluded that its negative influence upon my strength and fortitude had been at least part of the reason that I hadn't been able to prevail over the lich and the elder beholder and thus had been killed --and also it may have contributed to the rest of my odd experience.

As I was leaving the Temple, I got a telepathic message that Master Crideas was at Castle Greyskull looking for me, as apparently he had heard my intense distress call for help, and disentangled himself as quickly as he could from whatever he had been doing in order to come to my aid. So, even though I was tired, I teleported back in, and found him toying with the lich, having already summarily devastated the second wave of beholders. I told him that I'd had terrible difficulty with the lich, and he said he couldn't understand why, unless the lich had cast an Epic Warding, but even so, the acid and sonic augments on my sword should still have whittled him down. So with Crideas there just in case, I tried again, and this time I took the Lord down with not too much difficulty, much to my relief. Crideas then expressed his regrets that he had to get back to some urgent task, but as a parting gift he put so much magic on me that I sparkled, and although it made me momentarily a bit dizzy, I was totally re-energized, and felt near invincible and as quick as lightning. After he'd left, I went the long way back out to kill all the golems and undead that I'd bypassed earlier --that was great fun. Incidentally, since he had been there only a few minutes, and during that time I had been so engrossed in the combat analysis, I neglected to mention my odd death experience.

When I got back to camp, Kitty behaved very strangely, as if she knew something significant had happened to me. Dae has seldom left my side since, even forsaking her beloved solo hunting forays, seeming quite intent on always being around to protect me. In fact, in the weeks since this all happened, she still seems strangely impacted and changed. She sometimes looks tired, as if she's losing sleep to watch over me. And somehow she seems more aware, and smarter --more sentient even. She seems to understand most everything I say now, instead of seeming to get only the general gist of it from my emotional tenor and body language, like animals do, and like she seemed to do until this event. Also, something in how she meows and yowls now, I could swear that she's actually trying to imitate or use language. In fact, a couple of times I've been astonished at her seeming to be trying to vocalize some Elven word with her feline larynx --and the really startling thing was, that when I repeated back to her what I thought it sounded like, she nodded as if to communicate that that was indeed what she meant. I've heard of very intelligent animals being taught how to imitate sounds that their owners make, but I really don't know what to make of this. That this seems to have come right on the heels of my own odd experience makes me think that somehow her fate and mine continue to be linked, and this time in something even more unusual....

There's been other odd things happening, too, in the weeks since the Greyskull event. Some things of mine have gone missing --a bag, a couple sets of clothes, a cloak, an old bow, a magical amulet and a ring, and a few other small items. Not really valuable things, that anyone would really want to steal, and strangely enough not anything very essential to me, as most of them were extra items that I hadn't much use for. Notably, they were mostly the kinds of things and about as much as one would put in an overnight trip bag. But it seems that they disappeared out of my pack right from under my and Dae's nose. I don't remember selling them, although it's possible I did and just don't recall.... because that leads me to another strange thing, missing chunks of time. I've never been much of a sleeper, as being an Elf I usually only need two to four hours of reverie for rest. But I've found myself waking up from what seems to be a sound sleep, incidentally that's been filled with dreams, to find that nearly an entire night has gone by. Which leads me to the other odd thing, about my dreams. My dreams have continued, but changed. I've started having dreams of a different nature than those symbolic ones of longing that I'd been having about Lord Kastian. I've dreamt several times about being a magess, and these new dreams make me feel nearly like I'm living another life --but all that is probably just imaginations about my unfulfilled wish to be a mage, to be able to navigate through the planes to find Kastian. And then there's the other thing about my sleep--- sometimes I've woken up in a different place than I went to bed at, almost like I planar-traveled while asleep. It wouldn't be the first time that those slippery planes had played a trick on me, but these particular issues have only started happening since Castle Greyskull....

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Ramana Jala
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
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Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Mon Sep 03, 2012 11:16 am

In these first few weeks since I remember being alive, I've learned some facts about myself. I don't remember my past, but I do apparently know a few things. I am already familiar with the ways about this land and with some knowledge about locales, even though I don't recall having been there. And I know other things about people and places and some subjects --but more like felt knowledge, feelings, rather than mental facts like names. Like I feel I know, on some instinctual level, which merchants give a good deal. Although I don't know how I know these things.


But let me start at the beginning....

Day one, the first thing I remember very well is running. Running out of a building in fright, and running through countryside in confusion. A big black cat, a panther, was following me. I felt like I knew the panther, so I was not afraid of it. But everything else was extremely frightening, including the shadows that I could see all around me that seemed to have eyes or malintent, and I avoided them and also avoided any solid persons in my path. And my skin was starting to burn, making me even more crazy desperate. At the time I wasn't sure what made my skin do this painful thing, but now I understand that the fire in the sky was very bright and hurt me, hurt my eyes also, even though I instinctively put up my hood to try to shade my face.

I encountered some small aggressive creatures on the way and they attacked me. In response to the threat, I heard some strange words speaking in my head, and out of my fingers came some kind of force that froze one of the creatures' skin where it hit, and when I happened to touch another one, where I touched it shriveled. I was shocked at this strange power, and even though it seemed to be a helpful instinct, this happening only further alarmed me. But along with the cat coming to my defense, I managed to escape and keep running, the cat still following closely.

I ran on in extreme fright and in severe pain from my burning skin, intensely wanting to go someplace where I would be safe. So we ran and ran, until we finally came upon another building that for some unknown reason did feel safe, and I ran in and upstairs and locked myself in a room, along with the friendly panther.

Now that we were alone together, the panther at first looked at me with what seemed to be a puzzled expression, and seemed to be trying to be friendly, while I trembled in shock with my face turned to a corner, trying to not look at anything for fear that there would be shadowy creatures looking back at me. After a while the panther just went over near the door and sat down, seeming to be standing guard. It took hours until I calmed down, huddled there in the corner. But after a while it seemed like nothing was intent on attacking me, so eventually I welcomed the nice if large cat over, and soon we were cuddled up in the bed, and I fell unconscious out of the painful stress and exhaustion, and was out for a long time.


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Ramana Jala
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Mon Sep 03, 2012 10:27 pm


The next day I went downstairs, with the cat close at my side protecting me. Still avoiding people and shadows, I tried to go outside. The light in the sky again hurt my eyes, and seemed to be the thing hurting my tender skin, so I stayed indoors. The cat lead me to find the kitchen, and she was happy to get something to eat. I myself didn't have much appetite --actually I felt that I didn't have much natural inclination or maybe even need to eat-- but I did try a little cheese and crackers.

After another space of time, I felt something that led me to check the outside again. The burning object in the sky had gone down far off behind a forest. Apparently I could feel this change and tell that this had happened even from inside the building where there were no windows.

With the cat at my side protectively, we ventured out in the night. It was still pretty scary, but we managed to survive some black furry flying creatures --which weren't terribly aggressive but the cat liked to have fun leaping up to kill them-- and the small smelly aggressive creatures we met on the road like before, until we found ourselves in a town that seemed familiar somehow. And somehow it came to mind that there was a shoppe of useful merchandise in the town, so I became intent on finding it, when a dog ran from between two houses and menacingly towards me. I found out right then and there that dogs don't like me at all.

The dog growled and jumped on me, its teeth bared threateningly, and reflexively I hit it with my hand, as my cat snarled in preparation to defend me. I heard the words speak in my head again, and the cold and shrivel rays came out of my fingers again, killing the dog. I was still shrinking away in fright, clinging to the shadows around a building, trying to get away, headed towards the other part of town where I felt the shoppe must be, when a man ran up to me and got in my face, apparently about killing the dog, which from his attitude seemed like might have been his.

As he was yelling at me most unpleasantly, in a language that I didn't understand, out of the corner of my eye I saw with great alarm that the sky was lightening, so the burning would soon start again. I screamed and tried to get away from the man, but he didn't understand my words or either he didn't care, as he grabbed my arm to restrain me from leaving. Then something in me just snapped, and the words in my head spoke themselves again and his hand where he had grabbed me just shriveled up and broke off and fell to the ground. At this he screamed and got even more really really upset, and his hostile threatening manner just made me even more really really fearfully upset myself.

After that my recollection of the events is somewhat hazy. I had learned from the incidents with the creatures on the road, that it wasn't a good idea for anyone to threaten me, or otherwise get me really upset, so I'm guessing that my strange instincts took over and I probably killed that unpleasant man, just as I had killed the small smelly creatures. I might have killed many more, too, as eventually I came back to myself in a shoppe with an armload of clothes that weren't my own, along with my cat that was laying on the floor calmly licking red off of her fur. Even though I couldn't speak the human language, I managed to sell off most of the clothes to the merchant, keeping a few pretty ones for myself. Then I guess he hadn't yet heard about any commotion in the other part of town, for he had pity on me for my light-sensitivity and so let me curl up in a hidden corner of his shoppe behind some crates to nap waiting out the day. Nice man, I think his name is Sal. Sal's Sundries of Campton, that's the name of his store.

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Ramana Jala
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Mon Sep 03, 2012 10:37 pm


When night came, I made my way outside. As I was trying to leave the town, someone yelled out something in a very upset way, and more people --along with more dogs-- came running up to apprehend me. I don't really recall what happened, although I'm sure the whole situation turned into more unpleasantness.

I found myself and my cat on the road going away from the town, again with another armload of clothes that weren't my own. I guess I must like pretty clothes, even though I'm not very visible to show them off....

I stuffed the clothes into a bag, and the cat and I wandered around the countryside carefully, killing bats and many other various small creatures that threatened us, and hiding to avoid larger ones. The power coming out of my fingers wasn't startling me so much now, actually being quite helpful for self-defense. Feeling a teensy bit more courage because of this apparently innate ability, and constantly accompanied by my protective cat, I even approached a few merchants. I didn't understand their language to interact well with them, but I looked over their wares, and was pleasantly surprised to find some gold in my pocket with which I could buy a few things, such as a small sword and some cheese for my faithful companion. Oh, and I discovered that the cat hates fish --she actually got rather upset when I picked up a piece of dried fish to offer it to her.

Later, in the wee hours of the night when I didn't expect anyone to be about to bother us, kitty and I were practicing killing bats in the cornfields again, when I was startled by a passerby. I've come to understand that I don't see really well, and what I do see is overlaid with shadowy images, so in the dark of the night he was quiet enough that I hadn't seen him until he was very close. When he surprised me, I started babbling so fearfully that he didn't understand me at first. Then I'm not sure if it was because I slowed down, or he put on some translation device, but then he actually did seem to start understanding a bit of what I was saying. But he couldn't really speak my language. However, he managed to communicate that he wasn't a threat, enough that I calmed down. And even though I didn't understand much else of what he was saying, I did catch that he introduced himself as Panthan. He seemed to be asking my name, but since I didn't know if I had a name, I just said that I was lost, wandering. Of course, the Elven word for 'lost one' or 'wandering one' is 'ranara', so he probably took that to be my name.

He was very kind to me, as when the morning sunrise caught me unawares and slashed my arm with a burning ray of light, he quickly led me inside the nearby house of a friend. Most of the place was pretty dim inside, with shadows hanging in the corners, but there was a log burning in the fireplace and I noticed that the shadows weren't so prevalent there, so I quickly moved right up next to it, trying to explain to Panthan how I felt safer by the fire where there weren't so many shadows. Even if the warmth of the fire was a bit uncomfortable.

Panthan placatingly offered me something to eat, and although I still wasn't sure if I actually needed to, I decided to politely take his gift of an odd fruit and try to eat it. Since he was the first kind person I'd met that seemed like he wanted to help me, I started assailing him with many questions, asking him if he knew who and what I was. But it was very frustrating, being as I couldn't really understand his words, only getting the gist of some of his responses from his gestures and expression. So I gave up on the personal inquiries, and showed him two staves that I'd found in the bag I had with me, asking him how to activate them because I was sure they were supposed to catch fire. And that would be very helpful to keep the shadows and other threats away.

He gave me a magic ring to help me figure it out, and showed me how to use the staves. With his instruction, I managed to light both of them, and then I crossed them and raised them defensively to the corners of the ceiling to keep the shadows at bay. Many of the shadows fled, and I was very happy to be able to chase them away. This was excellent, I had better weapons. Although again, I didn't much care for the fire, and would be happy when I found something more suitable, that is, cooler to the touch.

After all this I suddenly felt very tired, so Panthan asked his friend if I could rest inside his house until nightfall, and so I was shown to a guest room. Panthan had to continue on his journey, but he assured me that I would be safe here and that surely we would meet again soon. I gratefully thanked him for his kindness, and kitty and I took to our rest.

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Ramana Jala
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Thu Sep 06, 2012 2:48 pm



I think I've heard some human say, that cats must see things that humans can't. Let me tell you, for as many times as I've seen something that apparently no human nor even most other two-leggeds nearby could see, that seems to be true. Although for some it could just be a matter of attention, and they might be able to see much more if they were only trained to know where and how to look. Elves seem to have this capacity to perceive more, and appreciate the worth of training themselves and their cubs to better do so. But humans seem to be among the most perceptually disadvantaged, whether through physical incapacity or mere ignorant stupidity. Even dogs seem better with some senses and perceptions than humans, the poor sots. How most of their cubs even survive to adulthood, it's a wonder. I'm glad that my dear Elven ranger friend has cultivated --or been cursed with, as she sometimes has said --her perceptual abilities, so that her perceptions are relatively the same as mine. Maybe it was a parting blessing from Sharess, as She foresaw that Ramana was slated to leave that goddess' universe, so she gifted Ramana with extra perceptions to match those of Cats, the Blessed of Sharess, in order to deal with upcoming new paranormal realities of planar manoeuvering. Maybe it was something negotiated among the gods, each stating what advantage they wished, with them coming to a compromise plan that technically granted all their desires, but did not entirely please all of them, thus why some happenstances seem to be blessings combined with other not-so-great results mixed in. I suppose blessing or curse may be something that's in the viewpoint of the thinker. Or maybe it's a game among them, without rules, each and every god throwing in their little wrinkle to throw the game their way. The gods work in mysterious ways in their influences upon the lives of the mortal creatures. I can attest personally to that now, as my new intellect continues to confound me. So it's possible that my remarkable companion has garnered the special attention of some of the gods, if not that it may be that the gods' vast minds do encompass every single being in such full attention. But perhaps Ramana is indeed a prize to be contested for, a soul of such emotional depth, that few gods could resist wanting to possess such a devotee capable of such passionate submission into a perfection of adoration --as I have long witnessed the intensity of such displayed in her relationships with men and gods. For is it not the power of the devotions of a god's followers that fuel that god's existence, obviously a prime motivation in their tinkering with mortals? Perhaps the devil goddess Fierna was only the boldest thus far. Perhaps Ramana's companion Lord Kastian has been deliberately cruelly displaced, to the purpose of some god. Maybe even Helicon was murdered by Fierna. What god or man would not use all his powers to woo and win a perfect devotee, struggling perhaps only with what acceptable level of ruthlessness he will apply? You can see that I've been thinking a great deal lately, about the whys of what I've seen....



So, let me tell you what the cat saw....

After the all-day and half-the-night expedition to Castle Greyskull, Ramana had come back to camp to get me, and we'd gone to the house of fire worship for her to have a long hot bath and get a room for a couple days. We had a light dinner in the room, of deer jerky and some raw vegetables and dried fruit. Then it was straight to bed. My companion probably expected to only be down for her usual few hours of reverie, but she slept for most of the next day. In the late afternoon, right before dusk, she awoke. But she did not seem actually fully awake, for it was with glassy eyes and without any small talk with me that she got dressed --in something she didn't usually wear, a hooded robe and a light greyish cloak-- then she packed a bag with a few things, and left, as I followed. I'm not sure if she was even aware of my presence, but already just the day before I had received my divine calling to protect her, so I stayed right by her. She walked very slowly and deliberately south on the road, her eyes straight ahead, even ignoring a villager's wave, until she arrived at the inn of the green dragon. She went inside, and upstairs to the landing, where she put out her arms and walked around the landing, as if she was trying to feel for something there. After a few moments of this, she apparently found where she wanted to be, and she just stopped, letting her arms drop limply to her sides. She closed her eyes and stood there very still, as if she were in meditation, or maybe she was fully asleep again, just upright --I wasn't really sure at the time. Fortunately she had stopped not in any walkway, no one was playing darts, and no one else was very near --as I was prepared to chase off anyone from bothering my companion, or from interfering with what was happening with her. She'd never walked while asleep since I've been around her, so this was something unusual.

A few moments later, she phased.... That's what she calls it when she goes halfway between planes, which makes her look like a wraith, and be very hard for most to see. But of course I could still see her. Then she stood there for many minutes, nearly invisible, barely breathing. Her robe concealed most all of her, except for her hands and a bit of her face. Since I didn't know how long this would go on, I sat down nearby and kept watchful eyes on her situation.

I was watching her face when it happened. Her face which had been totally passive, suddenly grimaced as with pain, and she fell to her knees, her hands rushing to her head. As she knelt there with her face at about my eye level, holding her head in both hands, her eyes still closed, I went to her in concern. As I got very close, I could see something really strange happening, and I'm not sure I'll ever be entirely able to explain it in words. I got the feeling that she was receding from the Material, like she does when she entirely crosses over to another plane. Then... well, it's rather disturbing for me to remember, because what happened reminds me so much of when I've clawed open a small rodent and turned it inside-out, something I would never want to see happen to my beloved Ramana.... I could see her head start to mis-shape, her forehead collapsing into a tiny whirlpool --which I'm not sure was actual or some spatial distortion of my perception-- and I became very alarmed. But it was only seconds, for in a quick soundless convolution starting there at her forehead and rippling outwards and downwards, she looked like she turned inside-out, right there inside the clothes, without disturbing them or even dropping the small bag that she had on her shoulder. And then she was standing there looking mostly like herself again. I finally took a breath and tried to calm down my panic.

I looked her over, as much as I could see with the long robe in the way. Although she was still semi-phased and thus somewhat hard to see, I noticed that her very dark hair had faded to a medium blueish-grey and acquired a streak of white down the middle front, and her skin was now much paler and translucent. A moment later, her eyes opened. Her distinctive emerald green eyes had lost their bright color, and were now a light grey. It took her a few moments to focus, then, still slowly and deliberately like a sleeping or dreaming person, she stood up and started walking, down the stairs and all the way up to the bar. She put her hand in her pocket, and pulled out all the coins that were there to lay them on the bar. The innkeeper lady came over, asked if she wanted a drink or a room, and in reply my companion slowly lifted her arm and pointed behind her to the upstairs, her hood keeping most of her face covered. The innkeeper made change and pushed all the extra coins, along with the key, back at her, which my companion managed to all pick up, albeit still very slowly and deliberate in her actions.

We made it back up the stairs, my companion still acting like only a minimally-functional self was awake. She managed to open the correct door with the key, and we went into the bedroom. She set her bag down, and then sat down on the bed and directly lay down. It was only now that the automatic pilot of her body seemed to release its control, as her eyes closed and her body relaxed from its heretofore wooden tension into what seemed a normal repose.



Last edited by Ramana Jala on Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Thu Sep 06, 2012 4:09 pm


It had been about sundown when all this had happened. Now my ethereal Ramana lay there on the bed, appearing relaxed, but very still, for many hours. I heard the sounds of people coming up the stairs, unlocking doors, doing various and sundry things before bedding down for the night, then the place was pretty quiet after that. I lay down right next to Ramana on the bed with my eyes on her. It was not long after that my companion woke up, and lay there while her eyes scanned the dimly-lit room. Then she stood up, albeit with some difficulty. She looked woozy, as if she still wasn't entirely there, or couldn't remember how to work her body. She looked at me curiously, as if she was trying to figure out if she had ever seen me before. I decided to not approach her, so as to not startle her in her confused state, and moved away a bit to sit down near a wall, trying to look non-threatening. Fortunately, she seemed comfortable enough with me to disregard my presence in order to concentrate on learning to work her body, as if she knew the theory of how to do it but had never done it before. This was certainly odd, and I was concerned that she'd sustained some head injury during her transformation. I tried to think of whom I might be able to communicate with to get help for her, but no one came to mind, as I continued to watch her move about like a two-year-old Elf cub. She persistently kept this up for more than an hour, until she had re-mastered how to walk, although she still looked a bit wooden. Then she moved to the door and went to the stairs down, as I followed. Methodically, she practiced moving down and up a couple of the stairsteps for another while. Then when she seemed to feel ready, she finally went all the way downstairs. It was very quiet there in the late night after the diurnal creatures had gone to sleep. Only two two-leggeds were around, in the bar area, one sweeping and one taking a nap in a chair. She did not go down to that area, but sat down at a table on the upper landing that was in a secluded spot, back to the wall.

She just sat there, not moving very much but looking all about and seeming to be taking it all in. She seemed to be slowly coming to a state of greater awareness and concern about her surroundings. I could see that this could go on unremarkably like this for some time, so I sat down to keep watch again.

But this tired kitty was nearly nodding off when I heard her give a small cry. I startled, and seeing her looking frightened, my gaze jumped up to where her eyes were fixated. I saw some shadowy thing descending from the ceiling and seeming to be trying to form into some shape. And may I say that, since then, most of the time when she gets frightened over shadows, they don't seem as conscious and alive with intent as this one did. She obviously was extremely frightened of it and didn't want to stay to see what came out of it, thus in a panic she suddenly jumped up. I could see her intent to get out of there forthwith, but in the second before she started running, she just halted for a moment. Something like a vapor quickly rose from her, apparently coming right through her robe, which rushed towards the shadow. In the instant before this vapor reached the approaching shadow, it had enlarged its field and then formed into a bluish fluid, which I swear splashed onto the shadow just like water, and clung to it, reforming any of its parts that didn't initially attach for another salvo. It was fascinating, but my companion wasn't staying, already proceeding to run down the stairs towards the door, so I had to leave the display to catch up with her and follow at her heels. Funny, my mouth felt really dry then for some reason, and I remember thinking that I probably wouldn't be getting a drink of water very soon.

We'd spent the whole night inside the inn as my companion re-learned things and seemed to become and more awake, and so now it was nearing sun-up as we exited the inn in a hurry and she proceeded to run up the road. She ran and ran and ran, as I did my best to keep up with her. After a ways, as the light got better, I managed to get a look behind and see that fortunately nothing was chasing after us. I was relieved, hoping that that shadow thing had given up on us for good.

Unfortunately, as the morning light came upon us, my companion seemed affected by something that made her cry out piteously, and her hands started to redden as they clutched her hood closed, as if they were being burned. I wanted to stop and tend to it, but she had gone crazy with the suffering of it, and ran on so hard that I was nearly out of breath to keep up with her. We ran for a long time, past people and animals, over the dangerous bridge, past the farmer's stand, for a long ways on the road. We encountered some small creatures on the road that attacked us, and I rushed to defend her. But she did them some damage herself, with a touch. Freezing and shriveling, like mages can do. The first few times it happened, she looked really shocked and very afraid of it, but then gradually she started to get used to it and began to come to terms with having some kind of powers.

Then we ran on again. It might have been hours since we'd left the inn, and even though she was trying to keep her hood and her cloak tightly shut, I could see her hands were covered in dark scabs, and something akin to a smoke was starting to come off of them. I feared for her greatly now, but she wouldn't stop, no matter how much I cried to her.

She ran until she came to the outskirts of a town and then ran straight for a building, one that I was familiar with, the hospitable group half-way house for the light-challenged. She seemed to recognize the place, and rushed inside and right up the stairs to burst into a room and slam the door shut behind her, as I scampered quickly through so as to not get my tail caught. Fortunately the room did seem vacant at this time. She rushed to a corner in terror, and stood there face to the corner trembling in fright, pain, and shock for quite some time, her hands clenching her hood. I tried to get her attention, and see how badly she was injured, but she wouldn't hardly give a glance from out of the corner.

I didn't know what to do, so I went over near the door and sat down, and watched her. As I sat there, it occurred to me that my companion seemed now like some of the other people that stayed at this group home, shadowy and burnable by the sun. This seemed a detrimental development.

She started to whimper and to mutter to herself, as if expressing her stress and learning how to speak again were all happening together. She kept saying to herself, somethings to the effect of 'who am I' and 'lost and wandering', all in her native Elvish. Which remarkably I could understand the exact meanings of now. But nevertheless my companion seemed in quite a pitfiful state.

It took another great while for her to calm down. But finally she moved from out of the corner, looking at her hands. She mumbled something, and her hands immediately healed up, and probably any damage to her face did also, if I could have seen much of it. She looked astonished at what she had just done.

Over the next few days, I tried to figure out the situation, as this lady, whom I thought I knew so well, encountered the world like an amnesiac, a frightened child, and a newly-hatched scorpion, all rolled into one. I would only gradually realize that this was not my same Ramana, but that a new person of sorts had been born.



Last edited by Ramana Jala on Sun Sep 09, 2012 7:51 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
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Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Thu Sep 06, 2012 4:11 pm



Last edited by Ramana Jala on Thu Aug 13, 2015 11:43 am; edited 1 time in total
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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
Epic Level

Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:54 pm


Now, as to the subsequent events in the town of the cheese shop and the eyeball magic-seller: First of all, it wasn't our fault, as they started it. But who is going to believe an unbalanced wraith girl and a wild panther?

If you really want to know what really happened, it was self-defense. And don't let any of those two-leggeds deceive you, about how they may say that they believe in truth and justice. Because if you hurt something of theirs, even accidentally or in self-defense, they will come after you with a vengeance to hurt you, asking no questions. Even if it's just a worthless mutt.

Because that's how it started. Now, if a creature acts like a pest and is hostile like a pest, then it's a pest, don't you think? And one has every right to defend against the threat, and eradicate it if it won't stop. That's just a natural law. Well, that pretty much sums up how those stupid canines and their two-leggeds were. My companion simply instinctively defended herself from being attacked by that vicious dog, but the situation immediately escalated, with its human coming to its aid, and then more two-leggeds and dogs coming to their cries. The crowd just wouldn't stop oppressing us, no matter how my companion screamed in fear, tried to explain, and tried to escape the rising sun that was starting to hurt her. Eventually she gave up trying to reason with them, as they were obviously not caring to listen, and so she just treated them like the mob of vermin that they were. At least the cats and rats in the town had the good sense to not get involved, although the belligerent goats wanted into the fray for their own absurd reasons.

You would have thought that the aggressors would have stopped after the first few injuries, to reconsider their irrationality. But no, they just got angrier, and probably thinking that since she was just a small thing, they could take her down. And so they came and came, and for one after another my companion used her magic to escape from and disable them. But they just wouldn't stop fighting us until we had put down all the dogs and two-leggeds in that part of town. I was so very proud of her, that she was so quickly becoming able to defend herself with magic. And it served them right for attacking a little terrified Elf girl, who had been minding her own business.

After the fighting was over, I caught a quick meal from one of the downed goats, very tasty. From one that my companion had frozen to death, not from any that she'd done the shriveling life-draining trick on, as those just didn't smell right. The tender-fleshed young domesticated goat was so delicious that I ate so much of it, to where I didn't have any room left for the dog. And yes, my companion stripped the dead and dying of clothes and whatnot, since their possessions became hers by right of conquest, as is the rule, is it not? But she eventually got rid of all the clothes that she'd obtained, as it seemed that whatever first impulse had attracted her to take them didn't persist. Not only can't she really be seen well at all, also I don't think she herself has very good vision, and she has memory issues. She might have come to the realization that she didn't really know why collecting the clothes seemed important at the time, that she really didn't care about how she looked, or that it was otherwise immaterial to my ethereal companion. --Oh, 'immaterial' --that was a pun! Humor, I actually think I'm starting to understand humor of language....

The odd thing is, that after she'd left the town, she didn't remember what had happened there, although she did seem aware that there was a gap in her memory. On a return visit there, I learned that they were calling the happening a 'massacre', the impudent vermin. Apparently they had to call in clerics and mages to raise the slain. Fortunately it seems that no one got a good enough look at my ethereal hooded companion to identify her, and potentially cause trouble for us in the future --but after that one return visit, I've tried to steer her clear of that town for a while, to let the tempers die down. My companion still doesn't seem to recall what happened there. I've noticed that it seems maybe a pattern that she has a tendency to not recall stressful events. She still doesn't remember the aggressive shadow in the inn, and wouldn't have even remembered what happened before she escaped that place running, if it weren't for the intervention of a helpful magess, who helped her piece some of those early moments back together....

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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
Epic Level

Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Thu Oct 18, 2012 10:24 am


That evening after napping the day away at Panthan's friend's home, Dae and I traveled back to Campton, which was perhaps not a very sensible thing, but I wanted to know what had happened when I was last there, since I couldn't clearly recall it. I kept to the shadows and listened, but, not understanding the human language, I couldn't really ascertain what was going on, and there weren't hardly any people on the street at the time. So I went back to Sal's shoppe, and started to sell off the second batch of clothes. Some of them were very pretty, so I undressed down to my undergarments and was trying them all on right there in the small shoppe, one after the other, so I could decide which ones I wanted to keep. I was still doing this when someone came into the shoppe. The small lady stopped, looking at me very startled, mumbled something while her face turned a rosy shade, then turned and went right back out the door. I was curious about this odd behavior, so I quickly threw a dress and hooded cloak on and poked my head out the door after her, calling out that I was sorry if I had frightened her.

I was actually surprised when the lady turned and addressed me back in my own language. She could understand and speak my language! And she replied that she was sorry if she had interrupted my 'interaction' with the merchant. The connotation of the words seemed to oddly imply something, but I couldn't quite figure out what.

But right then I didn't get to really query her on this, because by that time Kitty and I had stepped all the way out of the door, walked a few paces towards her, and then I noticed that there were dogs nearby. I shrank behind Kitty's large bulk, trying to slide back towards the shoppe. The lady noticed my terror, and thankfully she shooed the dogs away before they got near enough to go berserk about me.

But even with the dogs gone, my discomfit didn't end there. It seemed that there were a whole lot more people on the street than I had noticed earlier, and quite a few were waving amiably at this lady whom I'd just met, and then some started walking up to her to greet her. The lady interpreted for me, telling me that they were just wishing her well, saying how pleasant it was to see her on this nice evening, and thank her for her various services to their community. This lady must have been well-respected there. But as yet a few more approached, I started to feel that they were closing in on me. Then I looked around, and the shadows in the night seemed to be also closing in on me. I reacted hurriedly to take out one of my staves and set it alight, holding the uncomfortably fiery thing as far from myself as possible, swinging it out before me and up and all around defensively, while trying to warn the lady about the shadows.

The lady didn't seem to know what to do in response to my actions, except try to calm me, even anxiously offering if perhaps I might like to have a nice cup of tea. But as I stood there with my back against the wall of the building, holding the blazing pole out before me like a holy symbol before vampires, the shadows were chased away, along with the well-wisher people also, and I started to gradually calm down. At this point, even though I was still on the alert and positioned and poised defensively, I could finally relax enough to resume the conversation with the lady.

I again apologized if I had frightened her inside the shoppe. The lady had turned so red, that I could only surmise that it had been a blush of rage in a fight-response to some perceived frightful threat, but then she had chosen to flee rather than escalate the situation into hostilities. I explained that I had just been looking through dresses to sell, and that Sal hadn't seem to mind or mention that there was any problem. At this point, the lady inexplicably grinned, saying that, no, she didn't suppose that Sal would mind. Then she explained that she hadn't been frightened, actually only embarrassed.

The lady's admirers were not coming up close to us anymore, but they still stood off observing us, occasionally still waving to the lady, and looking at me oddly. The lady suggested that we go back inside so that we could have more privacy. I readily agreed, and was glad to rush back inside away from the oppressive throng.

Once inside, I positioned myself defensively in a corner at first, but seeing that it was fairly well-lit and free of shadows or too many people, my apprehensions were relieved and after a few moments I put my burning staff away. The lady seemed relieved also.

She introduced herself as Pin, and asked me what my name was. I replied with that Elven word that seemed to define all my feelings, 'ranara', lost, and that I had no name. The lady was puzzled, and asked if I knew where I had come from. I shook my head and again I replied, 'ranara', meaning lost or wandering. She repeated the word, obviously mulling over the mystery I presented. Then she asked if I had any memories, and I could but again shake my head no. The lady looked quite sympathetic about my plight.

Then I asked her, what am I? She replied that I was a woman, of course, an Elf. And that I seemed to also be a 'shadow child'. I asked her, why, what did that mean, and she paused to consider it for a moment, then sagely replied that what it meant is perhaps what I was meant to find out in my life.

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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
Epic Level

Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

Post by Ramana Jala on Thu Jul 11, 2013 4:38 pm



((Continued in Chapter 3))
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Ramana Jala
Epic Level
Epic Level

Female Number of posts : 1033
Location : Earth, Sol system, in the Mutter's Spiral galaxy
Main Character : Ramana Domefarar -
Publicly a Ranger, privately an Opportunist.
Lay Follower of Jewel,
Sensate and practitioner of the Way of Pleasure.

Other Character : Ranara Duauth -
A being created by shadow and water, a wizard.
Is actually another persona of Ramana.

Other Character. : Dae, the panther,
companion to both Ramana and Ranara,
and the best real eye-witness to the
strange circumstance of those alternating personae.

Other Character.. : The Personae of Ramana Jala
NWN Username : Ramana Jala
Time Zone : US Eastern Time
Registration date : 2011-08-29

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Re: Living Ramana's Life - 2 - Her Shadow Self

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