The Oracle's Travels: Oracester Volume I
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Dear diary,
I have settled down at last in a new village. I have not yet left the continent of Zakhara because… well, to be frank, I am not sure how to. The Underdark had no system of continents or countries, making navigating the surface world a very confusing experience. All that you had to remember was your city and the names of the cities nearby. Morve-Allanar was all I ever knew, up until I started taking deliveries. I remember it being confusing to navigate back then too.

Anyways, this new village is called Oracester. It is inhabited by funny little people who are even smaller than I am. I measure in at a measly 4' 7, but the tallest of these people are only a little above half my height. Apparently, they are called "halflings." Their attitude is annoying at times, and they are rather vulgar, but they've shown hospitality to me so I'm able to look past those things. I find them to be rather humorous.

They've provided me lodging, but it's a little small for me. I've had to improvise. Additionally, around here the halflings know me as "that one weirdly tall halfling." I find it quite a nice change of pace that they seem to immediately accept me as one of their own.

Dear diary,
Today I showed the halflings a little about medicine. They are already more proficient with farming than I am, but I was shocked to discover that their attitude towards injury is more or less "suck it up and deal with it." Especially considering how headstrong they are. More often than not, I've heard, an inhabitant of Oracester has died because they got minor scrapes while hunting and they got infected.

However, the halflings had no idea what "infections" even were, and the thought never occurred to them to do anything more than suck at a wound — which no doubt explains why they got infected so much! They don't have the most cleanly mouths around here, what with all the alcohol and tobacco they consume. It's a bit nauseating at times, but I put up with it for the hospitality.

When I asked them why they never thought of patching anyone up before, their answer was basically that those of them who die were simply not "lucky" enough to make it, and therefore it's better off that they die than live a life full of bad luck. Very pessimistic and a bit grim, if you ask me.

So yes, I did end up showing them how to properly clean wounds and patch them up. Since then, I've been receiving endless praise. It's the littlest things that count the most, I suppose.

Dear diary,
I made a friend today. She snuck up on me when I was out gardening. Did I mention that I do that? Well, I do. Anyways… She seemed interested in what I was doing. I was rather surprised when she snuck up on me, because I didn't hear her at all. She told me that she's much more nimble on her feet than other halflings are.

Her name is Parvati, and she asked me if I could teach her about gardening. All her mother has taught her is about hunting and fighting for sport. Her mother is away from town often, off fighting in gladiatorial combat, apparently. I was astonished, and asked Parvati if her mother was okay. Then, she laid upon me the most startling and hilarious piece of information I think I have ever heard in my life. I shall quote her directly.

"Jibbles the Unkillable never loses."

Jibbles the Unkillable? That is apparently her mother's name. She earned the Unkillable title because well, she has apparently never lost in a fight. Interesting. And hilarious. I almost brought into question whether she was really Jibbles' daughter, because Parvati is such a quiet and sweet girl, especially by comparison to other halflings here in Oracester.

She still drinks and smokes of course, but at least she's respectful about it.

Since that fateful meeting, Parvati has been stopping by my house every other day. Sometimes I show her more about farming or medicine, or tell her a bit about my past. Sometimes she shows me around town and tells me a bit about herself. It's much nicer here than it was back in Dhudgrir, where the attitude was mostly set off by how cute the kobolds and gnolls were. They didn't seem to have much room for thinking and showing genuine kindness beyond that which is typical of animals. A bit more than normal though, since they were intelligent enough to organize a town and speak.

I hope nothing goes wrong here in Oracester.

Dear diary,
It has been a few months since I've moved into Oracester. I've met Parvati's family and her other friends, and around town I am generally well known and well liked. None of the halflings seem to care that I am a drow. Not to say that they don't care about my history — in fact, they care a lot. I've spent many a night by the town bonfire telling stories about my history; what I've been able to remember at least. They seem genuinely interested in my culture.

But, despite how different I am to all of them, they still treat me as one of them. They do not refer to me with derogatory terms, they don't call me simply "drow," or "farmer" or "nurse." They call me by my name, The Oracle. And they still call me "that one weirdly tall halfling" to people that aren't familiar with me.

Life is calm around here, and quite nice.

Dear diary,
Oracester is not a very popular village. As I've learned, its a bit in the middle of nowhere. The major centers of civilization in Zakhara are mostly on the coastal regions and some much further inland. Oracester is just kind of in the middle. However, because we're in the middle, we do get visits from traders on a relatively frequent basis.

Today I got to assist in aiding with trade. The last few months have been very productive for me, and Parvati has been working alongside me. A trader from a far off town called Phandalin came by seeking some halfling crafts and crops. They were quite surprised to me see come up to the trading post with a basketful of mushrooms, root vegetables, and various tinctures, potions, and other medical remedies.

My farming and medicine has spread throughout Oracester a little bit, and some halflings practice making their own medicine and growing their own roots and herbs, but generally I am treated as the sole benefactor of the town. I am happy to report that the number of casualties in Oracester have dropped to almost none since my arrival. There were a few unfortunate incidents. Not anything that I had anything to do with, but I am sad all the same.

Anyways, the trader from Phandalin bought some of my "exotic" Underdark mushrooms and a few of my tinctures. He seemed confused by my price and paid me nearly quadruple what I asked for! I shall let his judgement act as an example for future trades. I also got a neat trinket from Phandalin — an amulet of a god called Amaunator. Why does that name seem familiar to me?

I don't know, but I put it on anyways. It looks quite nice against my black robes.

Dear diary,
Somehow I've failed to notice the curious stares my appearance sometimes affords me. Though the halflings treat me as one of their own, they cannot help from being curious. They have refrained from asking me anything about it out of courtesy, until today. While walking on the street, a halfling toddler pointed up at my forehead and asked me about why I had a third eye.

I am pretty sure I don't have a third eye, but I reached up to touch my forehead regardless and felt nothing but my own skin. I went and asked Parvati for a mirror, and admired my face in it. It's… the first time I've seen myself since purchasing this diary. It was quite a confusing sight to look at, made even more confusing by the fact that I realized I have somehow never seen myself before now.

On my forehead, drawn in bright yellow ink — almost glowing — is a tattoo of an upturned eye. I have no idea where I got it. My hair is white and my skin is a dark grey-purple, that much I knew already. My eyes are a bit squinty, and are bright yellow in color, just like the one on my forehead. I appear to have freckles, a big nose, and some plump lips. Plumper than even the most matronly of halflings around here in Oracester.

I'm pretty sure I'm not a mother, but I almost mistook myself for one.

Dear diary,
For the past few months, my memories have been filling in more. Here is what I have remembered so far…

Amaunator was a god that I was very interested in when I was younger, and practiced divining the future under the name of The Oracle. It's quite a coincidence that an amulet of his made his way to me all the way from Phandalin.

I still have no idea where this tattoo of an eye on my forehead came from, nor why my eyes are the way they are. I can only assume that they have been with me ever since my journeys began, which would mean…

Which would mean…

What would that mean? There's that flat feeling again. Every time I try to think about whatever that might mean, my mind skips right over it. Another thing that I cannot remember. I can only hope that my memory will fill in eventually, or that I might one day stumble across the information by chance.

Until then, the strange divinity of my appearance is a mystery.

Dear diary,
Today, out of boredom, I have decided to begin worshipping Amaunator. I've read in Oracester's minuscule library, and the few books I get from trading, that this amulet might be a holy symbol that I can use to worship a god.

As soon as I began praying to Amaunator, I felt something stir within me, and all of a sudden I opened my eyes and found myself floating several inches off the ground. I had heard stories of monks meditating and then beginning to float upwards, but I had no idea it was something that could actually happen! One problem, however.

I can't seem to get down.

Everywhere I go now, I am floating a few inches above the ground. It has freaked out a good number of the halflings I associate myself with, but most of them ended up conceding that it's pretty cool, Parvati included. I have to admit, it is nice to be able to walk without moving my legs, and I don't have to risk getting my feet wet in puddles and can cross right over the river flowing outside Oracester.

Also, when I got back from exploring with my newfound ability, I found something else strange. The back page of this diary, which I write into sometimes to keep track of my products and trades, apparently now acts as a direct communication line to Amaunator. He seemed rather annoyed, so I've decided to leave him alone for now.

Dear diary,
Today a large section of Oracester burnt down. It wasn't any resident's doing, apparently. Someone came down our ordinary trading route and started shouting, looking for someone. Looking for me. Parvati hid me away in her cellar, but I heard the shouts from above.

Apparently, the stranger threatened that if I didn't come out, he would start burning down buildings. He kept true to his word, and the halflings had a hard time of it trying to put them out. They fought the fire — and him — off, eventually. I have to admire their bravery, and I feel grateful that an entire town was willing to go to such lengths to protect me whilst I hid in a cellar. Like a coward.

Parvati told me that it isn't safe for me around here. Word has reached some of the more prejudiced parts of Toril of my existence, and apparently they want me gone for some reason. "The Surface is no place for a drow! Get back down under, you cretin!" was something the man was yelling about.

I don't want to leave behind Parvati and the happy life I've been building here in Oracester. The community is so kind to me. But I cannot risk people coming to harm because of me, so I do not have any other choice.

Tonight, I will leave Oracester, and I will search for somewhere else to stay. I hope that they will be safe in my absence.

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