Mote Minutiae

These are assorted quotes and sayings about the world of Mote, said or written by various NPCs.


Plaram, master pyromancer

  • "What is left for us, but to rage against the fading power of our world? In a world so old that its very name has worn away like so many mountains, what course remains? Were I of such a mind, I would lash the core of Tanalus, and string the rock into a world of my own... In our rage, we must see futility. Greatness has fled, and it will not return."
  • "What's that smell? Oh, right. Stupid people on fire."
  • "The mountain loomed before me as I left Brenn. In that moment, I glimpsed primordial power. Visions of fire, destructive and elegant, swam in my mind's eye. My path, long set, led onward to the heart of Tanalus."
  • "Yes, I've been to the Plane of Fire. Everything is either on fire or made of fire. Do you always ask stupid questions?"
  • "If my colleagues would simply take the time to get to know me, then maybe I wouldn't light them on fire."


Keoshor, Sorceress of the Fates

  • "I see nothing to suggest that our world is even that. Is it not possible that we live on just one fragment of the gods' creation? Yes they still watch over us, but we must remain open to the thought that we are not their favorite sons and daughters. We might even be a mistake, an unintended consequence. Only exploration will reveal the answer."
  • "Our future is as our past. Dim, largely unknown, and written by the triumphant."
  • "I have seen the gods, they do not interest me. It also seems they have no interest in us. Have you ever asked yourself why we have no god of love? No goddess of literature? They may yet be found, but not here. Our speck of a world is beneath their notice."
  • "I have little respect for the pretenders of my craft. The fortune-tellers, the mystics, the so-called oracles. Yet there is one who I would be proud to call my equal. The enigmatic oracle at E'tarn, whose knowledge rivals my own. I simply wish I knew his sources, for the depth of his revelations troubles me from time to time."
  • "Knowledge is truly a dangerous thing. Fortunately, it is far safer than forgetting."
  • "The Far Expedition... truly an intriguing tale. To think that one of them was able to tear himself away from the wonders beheld, yet I still weep for the knowledge lost. Perhaps one day we shall know, but even my divinations cannot be certain."
  • "Plaram regrettably exhibits most of the traits that are despised in humankind, chief among them pride and arrogance. Were it not for the fact that he is incredibly talented, he would have been killed before he was grown."
  • "El-Kahani was truly one of our world's greatest spellweavers. What a shame that his many trinkets have outlived the true treasure, that of his research. But something of his genius might still be recovered from those artifacts, were they to fall into the proper hands."


Iliandib, sage

  • "Contrary to popular belief, it is actually possible to be in two places at once."
  • "I have heard people say that life is about the journey, not the destination. This may or may not be true on a philosophical level, but I can confirm that the more you shorten your journeys, the more destinations you can reach."
  • "I have seen more of this world than most could in two lifetimes, and still I cannot answer the question that plagues so many of us. Where are the gods?"
  • "No matter where you roam in life, it is always advisable to make sure you can find a way back. I prefer to build that capability into all of my spells."


Firdi, Master Transmuter
  • "It took me a lot of time to master the art of self-teleportation, but I have long since gained it all back."


Imaunte

  • "Whoops." - last known mortal words before ascension


Gaunik-Da, master illusionist

  • "Once, an enemy of mine rudely burst the door of my sanctum. While I held her in a stasis, I pried to devise a nightmare. An endless plain, with no beginning or end, lit by a dull and unmoving sun. Into this I cast her. For disturbing my own solitude, I would make solitude her curse."
  • "I have both seen and crafted dreams fit for the gods themselves. Truly a unique sight, the death of a god. But even more unique, puzzling, and truly awe-inspiring is the birth of a god."
  • "I am truly honored to call Plaram one of my colleagues, particularly if he is within fifty feet and I am not underwater at the time."
  • "Travel to the Plane of Dreams is simple enough. In fact, most creatures make the journey every night, though they do not know it."
  • "Anyone who thinks dreams are not real has never had a true nightmare. When confronted by the horrors of one's own mind, it is impossible to ignore the reality of the situation."
  • "When a mortal passes on, echoes of their existence can persist in the Plane of Dreams. But like all fine enchantments, the merest disturbance can destroy them."


Chamulsep, Lord of Pain

  • "For every thing there is a time, and all things must come to an end. I have simply decided that you will end prematurely."
  • "Your suffering means nothing to me."
  • "Today begins a new epoch. My epoch."
  • "It has come to my attention that there is an army outside my citadel. I should prepare the vats, lest this engagement consume my evening."


General Tyal, Commander of the Allied Troops of Laessos

  • "We may perish here today, my brethren. We may be forgotten one day. But our deeds will live on throughout the ages! Even should we fail at our task, this day will be remembered as the day that we stood against tyranny, against evil, against the darkness itself. Now onward! We will topple Chamulsep's citadel with our bare hands!"
  • "And so we consecrate this ground in Loshkut's name, forever sealing the darkness away. It is our dearest hope that one day, our descendants may tread this ground without fear, and that in a distant age this will all be but a memory."


Zotlqec, Royal Historian at Eolith

  • "The Riolers do not often appear in my work. This is a rare achievement."


Lerasti, historian

  • "The first of Chamulsep's lieutenants was a fiendish artificer, who wrought horrible creations of flesh and metal. His machines were responsible for unspeakable atrocities, and formed the base of the Lord of Pain's power."
  • "The second of Chamulsep's lieutenants was a summoning adept, master of bizarre devils and demons. Legend says he was slain by a rebellious demon lord, and his soul was imprisoned in one of the lower hells."
  • "The third of Chamulsep's lieutenants was a powerful wizard of a past age, who the Lord of Pain revived as an arch-lich. After Chamulsep's fall, the lich allegedly threw himself into the volcano Ounolokisha, stoking its fires for aeons."
  • "The fourth of Chamulsep's lieutenants was a high priestess of Hurak, the forgotten god of Decay. She surrounded herself with the tortured souls of her victims, until one of the Alliance's sorcerers freed them, spelling a long and painful death for the priestess."
  • "The last of Chamulsep's lieutenants was a shade, about whom precious little is known. The story goes that Chamulsep's power enticed the shadow of a long-dead god into serving him. The shade was finally destroyed when the then-exarch of Mariona broke through its citadel, and the goddess herself appeared to destroy it."
  • "When conflict finally ceased, and Chamulsep was slain, one major question was raised. What to do with the fallen soldiers? After long negotiations, the Allied mages wrought stone crypts across the marsh, and the fallen of both sides were interred there. Modern scholars view this quick and elegant solution as nothing short of a political miracle."
  • "An even greater concern than the fallen Alliance soldiers was what to do with the remnants of Chamulsep's forces. The vast majority were simply slain, but soon the Alliance set up complexes to process them. Those who served unwillingly were usually set free, and some were even given trials, though the fairness of these was debatable."
  • "Tracing the stories back to the original conflict, it becomes uncertain who or what actually slew Chamulsep. The final fate of the necromancer's body is even less certain. Most groups can agree that it was destroyed, but the truth remains elusive."
  • "The citadel at E'Tarn, now occupied by the Oracle of Selos, was once the home of a powerful lacewing mage with the ability to shape the land itself. He was known as Orlis the Cliffpainter, and none of his work is known to exist in the present day."


Yealto, Historian

  • "A lot of Skarrifissk's history has been maddeningly lost to the ravages of time. Yet, if the scattered ruins and remnants of paved road are any indication, this island was once host to a mighty kingdom. If I were to have one wish in this lifetime, it'd be to explore those ruins without risking my life and limb, but between the bandits and monsters, I doubt that'll come to pass."
  • "The Garth-Torres Feud? Yes, I know of it. The short version is this: A few decades ago, the then-Baron Alec Garth of Ricoto was on his personal yacht when his ship and a small frigate got into a firefight. He was killed, and the yacht sunk. Naturally, the Garth family was not thrilled with this development, but the salt on the wound came when a messenger from the Torres family in Niskos arrived, claiming that the Baron's ship had attacked a merchant ship unprovoked, and that the merchant demanded restitution for the incident. The Garths responded by trying to place an embargo on Niskos until the Torres turned over the offending merchant and paid a sum for the loss of the Baron, the ship, and the valuables aboard. This failed rather miserably, and ever since, it's been a long and bloody history of skirmishes, sea battles, and general competition between the two port cities."
  • "Skarrifissk's hilltop citadel is probably its most notable man-made landmark. A remnant of a long-lost kingdom or empire, it's said that the citadel is haunted by the ghosts of its former inhabitants. Having been there myself, I can confirm that there's something strange there, and it's best observed from a distance."
  • Saris Peak is a common destination for pilgrims on a religious journey. Nestled on the mountain's summit, the village is a fortress of solitude and peace. However, braving the mountain itself is a treacherous and draining task.


Tabazinth, necromancer

  • "Adventuring? Bah, I know how that story ends. Dead in some cave miles away from sunlight, with unspeakable creatures gnawing on your bones. I'll stay right where I am, thank you."
  • "I feel the pulse of the marsh, burning my brain at night. Some fell power still holds sway there, and though it may rest now, it might not always be so."
  • "Of course people try to raid the tombs. Sometimes it's just greed, hoping for some sort of ancient buried relic, and sometimes they want to put the contents to more nefarious purposes. Regardless, many people try, and a few even survive."


Lord Hakkel of Quera

  • "It is up to all of us, whether elf, dwarf, or even human, to protect what few bastions of civilization remain on our ember of a world. Until the glorious day when peace reigns over the islands, some of us must maintain a constant vigil. Lest the darkness overcome us."
  • "Friends, my time grows short. I have but two wishes, and I bid you listen. First, that we not let the petty squabbles and annoyances that hinder us to truly unseat us. We must stand strong against the darkness, and we can only stand together. Second, wring every last drop of happiness from your lives, for otherwise our vigil is for naught."


Zarusa, pyromancer

  • "By the simple virtue of being human, my life has been full of trials. And so, I have fought for my power, for my knowledge, for my freedom from persecution. I am not one of the recluses in the wilderness, still cowering from the world's hateful glare. I am stronger."
  • "I make my own paths. It's just refreshing to actually have one go where I want it for once."
  • "Sometimes, vengeance is incredibly fulfilling. It helps distract you from the pain of the original wrong, at least until you are prepared to deal with it."


Kura, beastlord

  • "If you've ever looked at say, a boom squirrel, and asked yourself, "What would this look like if it was twenty feet tall?" then you should go to Selos. Unless you're afraid of giant squirrels."
  • "Have you ever seen someone get carried away by dragonflies? Didn't think so. And unless you want to witness it first-hand, I don't think I'll be paying that toll."
  • "Boom squirrel mating season can be dangerous. The males try to outdo one another's booming calls, with the unfortunate side effect that occasionally one of them explodes from overdoing it."
  • "Why would I fear the bandits of Sarden? I can summon a fifty-foot boa constrictor with a whistle. Do you honestly think I fear their child's play?"
  • "The spirits of wild beasts usually outshine your average townsperson's. So goes nature."


Erin Halvot, Tylvian Druid

  • "I've seen a few people try to ride manticores. And let me tell you, it doesn't work. Not because they can't be tamed, but because riding on one puts you right in the line of fire of their spines."


Lugla, naturalist

  • "Yes, I've heard of all the legendary beasts of Ouracasos. I'll believe in land sharks when I see one."


Hera, Dragonborn Weather Witch

  • "Weather manipulation is a subtle and tiring craft, requiring gentle manipulation rather than plain-sweeping alterations. It's not all about striking people with lightning, though that is a small perk."


Aerat Barnes, Thane Guard Captain

  • "I've heard of a distant city called Sarden, composed entirely of bandits. And while I'm appalled at such an affront to the law, some small part of me wishes they'd come recruiting here. If only to make my job easier."
  • "The southeast side of town is a no-man's-land, controlled predominantly by thugs and thieves. My predecessor tried desperately to retake control of it, taking grander and grander measures to force the lawless elements out. His final effort was to try and simply raze that part of the city with fire, but he was assassinated the day prior to the plan taking effect."
  • "Last week, I caught a boom squirrel pickpocketing someone. It's a sad state of affairs when even the local wildlife is trying to rob people."


Bolit, Captain-Lord of Miana

  • "Since the fall of Exana, our republic has been the only power on Mote to maintain a standing navy. When I think of all the ways that our city has profited from this institution, I cannot help wondering why none imitate us."


Khielik, human shaman

  • "The cities shun us. Civilization itself shuns us, all for the wrongs committed by one of our race aeons ago. The jungle, however, welcomes us. It conceals us from our enemies, and it provides for us. In turn, we protect it. Perhaps one day, the world will forgive humankind. Until then, we will wait."
  • "Vengeance does not become us. It never has, and it never will. We only do what we must to guarantee our own safety."
  • "I have dreams where humanity atones for the wrongs of the past, beautiful dreams where we are welcomed back to civilization. But for the life of me, I can never see clearly the one act that will redeem us. It haunts me to see the effect but not the cause."


Egues-Tol, necromancer

  • "It should come as no surprise that even aeons after the defeat of Chamulsep, the necromantic arts have yet to regain their stature among the civilized people of this world. I have seen novices shunned, berated, even killed by ignorant and easily-frightened peasants. I understand their fear, but one day they must come to recognize that not all who practice our craft are insane monsters. Surely, a great deal are, but not all of us!"
  • "The persecution of humankind is one of our world's greatest misconceptions. Many believe that in treating humans unfairly, they are avenging the losses Chamulsep inflicted. In truth, he was no paragon of humanity, and he never believed that humanity was superior. He simply believed in his own superiority, and found that it was far easier to manipulate fellow humans. Though not many of his mad ramblings have survived the march of the ages, this much is clear to me."
  • "To me, necromancy simply means never having to restock your aquarium."
  • "People think it is so easy to maintain a collection of undead servants, but truth be told it is quite taxing. The more you attempt to control, the greater the toll on your sanity. Too many, and you will eventually break under the strain and attack the peasantry. So you can make more servants. So you can attack more peasants."


Erratis, necromancer

  • "Nations are crumbling, madmen are rising, and everyone is descending into madness. A storm is coming, and I can only hope that my efforts to weather it are not in vain."


Thiaspor, priestess of Sliros

  • "The tyrants of Sarden ought to be turned out into the streets. Day after day, more slaves are brought in from the wilderness, while those kept here are beaten and exhausted. It is only in secret that we can operate, whisking these unfortunates away to their homes and families. I dream that one day, we can lead an army of the freed to overthrow these self-important cutpurses."
  • "In dark times such as this, I take solace in the fact that Sliros watches over us. Sometimes it is the only comfort available to us."


Kirkin, priest of Sliros

  • "The religious mysteries of the seafaring dwarves of Koros, their strange gods of wind and water and their exotic pieties, are still famously unknown in the wider world, even among those of us who devote our lives to the divine. Everyone seems to agree that this is due to the dwarves' unwillingness to answer questions about them, but as far as I know, none of my colleagues have ever asked."


'Seven-finger' Sven, Thief

  • "I can't help but look upon the new generation of thieves with disgust as skill and talent gets replaced with thuggery and depravity. Robbing a merchant of several hundred gold without him being the wiser is an accomplishment. Mugging a blind hobo for three coppers is just sadistic."


Wallo, Traveling Lacewing Healer

  • "Thane would like to think that its problems are limited to its city walls. It's not; I've been mugged on roads no less than six times in the past week, and other travelers have fared no better."
  • "You know something? For all the self-proclaimed servants of the gods around here, I seem to be doing far more good for the isle of Skarrifissk. And I'm making money doing it!"


Qarm, Self-Proclaimed Servant of Skarrifissk

  • "I take offense to the insinuation that I'm a highwayman. All I and my men do is keep the roads clear of beasts and brigands. Surely, Skarrifissk has the safest roads of any land in these dark and turbulent times. So is it really so much to ask travelers for a small toll now and then for performing this vital service? Oh, and you still owe me fifteen gold."


Ikthak, goblin archmage

  • "I have traveled from this world, and it saddens me to see that on most other worlds, my kind barely rises above base barbarism. And yet, this does nothing to soothe my irritation with the lazier members of my race. I dream that one day, goblins will be more than just a nuisance, an ephemeral threat to civilization. One day."
  • "Ah... Plaram. A genius at his art, and a pleasant enough individual, assuming you are not flammable."
  • "A noticeable flux in the fifth hemi-quadrant of the pole star is vexing me. I have read that the stars shift across the aeons as they do across a day, but this irregularity seems like an omen. Perhaps a visit to Keoshor is in order."
  • "The Archer is rising, as it should. With any luck this means the flux I observed was meaningless."
  • "A small blemish on the face of the sun... not too unusual. However, its duration is truly what worries me, as I first observed it two months prior, and comparable spots have dissipated in that time. I wonder if my brother has observed the same phenomenon."


Yuthan, Dwarven Shipwright

  • "It's one thing to build a boat that floats, and another entirely to build one that can stand up to the storms, the reefs, and the beasts of the deep that a true seafarer must endure. Of course, a little bit of magic tends to help, but don't come around asking me for pointers."
  • "Whirlpools are a serious threat to our business. Of course, we'd all rather tangle with whirlpools than the things that make the whirlpools."
  • "I've heard that long ago, there were actual shipping lanes between the islands, that were regularly patrolled and generally safe. Having seen the seas of Mote in the present day, I find it rather difficult to believe."
  • "There are some who feel that the best way to make shipping safe is to make sure that the boats carry adequate defenses, usually in the form of guards. Well, the horrors of the deep aren't terribly afraid of ballistae and pikestaffs. The best way to stay safe is to move as quickly as possible, and my designs reflect this."


Tark, dwarven ship captain

  • "Ye landlubbers have it easy! Out here on the great Sea o' Mote, even the water itself is trying to kill you!"
  • "Thar be nasty fish in these watarrrs. You may want an umbrella."


Vothella, lacewing dreamthief

  • "There are those who will pay premium coin for properly-prepared dreams. And for the few who know the craft, it is a blessing and a curse."
  • "It is surprisingly easy to steal someone's dream and then sell it right back to them."
  • "Trassak is not one to be trusted... some say he can dispel any magic with a thought. And when that fails, his blade usually suffices."
  • "Silence! Do not speak that name, or you bring death upon us all!"


Tamia, Scholar of All

  • "The Hachel tribe of Selos intrigues me. Their society is so complex and internally advanced, yet they shun contact in the extreme, and they are largely feared and misunderstood. Were they to open diplomatic ties with the other settlements of the island, perhaps they would not be so poorly-regarded by the civilized world."
  • "It is widely believed that the god Imaunte was once a mortal like us, and that somehow he ascended into godhood. This raises important questions, the most obvious of which is what makes a god. Could I, or any other mortal, achieve that rank if we had a devout group of followers?"


Brilar, priest of Kyrophius

  • "Ouracasos puzzles me. Ages ago, some foolish ruler set it aside as a natural preserve, as he harbored some fondness for the land's features. Yet even today, the isle is still largely uninhabited. And the stories of dark and fell beasts are too common to be ignored. I think something is in fact being preserved, but what?"
  • "Humans today speak carefully, which is understandably borne out of past transgressions. But when so much time has passed since the days of Chamulsep, I fear that even this caution is suspicious. Some call this insensitive, I call it pragmatism."
  • "Sometimes, I worry. Ours is an order built on secrets. How are we to know what the rest of the order is doing? We could be working at cross-purposes, and likely would not know until it was too late."


Liomha, dragonborn weaponsmith

  • "Of all the strange and ill-conceived weaponry I've seen over the years, one of the least practical I've seen is the catberd. Halberd on one end, cat o' nine tails on the other end. Almost impossible to wield, probably impossible to wield effectively. And everyone calls it a "catbard", which just makes no sense."
  • "No, sorry, I can't re-forge your sword this week. Yes, I'm sure it is the lost Blade of Phol-Phoram, I really do believe you. Just let me put it in the pile with the other lost Blades of Phol-Phoram, and I'll get it done once I do all the others."
  • "Look, I am not responsible for important quest-related items that you forgot to remove from your sword's secret compartment behind the pommel. Didn't you read the sign?"
  • "Yes, yes, I know. You want magic weapons, don't waste your breath. I am concerned with quality smithing, weapons that function properly. Whine all you want, but when your flashy blades snap on your enemies' carapaces, remember that I told you so."
  • "Where do I get my materials? You really think I'm that stupid, don't you."


Orlis the Cliffpainter

  • "You see a wasteland, I see potential."
  • "The way the light reflects off the mountaintops... it's not quite right. Give me a week."
  • "This land has scars, deep and jagged. I can only read so much from them before I am forced to look away... the sheer volume of history is overwhelming. And yet, I am compelled to read on."
  • "If we grant ourselves the power to shape one world, who is to say we cannot make the stars our canvas?"


Lars, dwarven adventurer

  • "Never seen one of those before. Looks kinda cute, though."
  • "Are these supposed to have spikes on them?"
  • "Who's been going around talking about my 'last words'? I've got a bone to pick... several, actually."


Accounts of the Wandering Demon

  • "No one's sure why or how this being keeps appearing. All that's known is that, whenever Skarrifissk experiences times of great strife, a single soul will rise that personifies a great evil. Whether it's a succession of evil souls passing the mantle from one to the next, or the same being appearing at different times, one thing's for sure: wherever it goes, sorrow is sure to follow."


Ulroth, Flamekeeper Archmage of Necromancy

  • "Skarrifissk is the epitome of insanity. The island itself is a death-trap, two of their cities are battling each other, the finest city on the island is a den of thieves, Fort Tremerant brings xenophobia to an art form, and the less said about Nikorom, the better. If it wasn't for the Great Library at Ssareko Point, I'd write the whole island off as a loss. As it is, year after year, I have to send apprentices there and hope that at least a tenth of them come back." 


Unknown/Unattributed

  • "The city of Sarden is one of those rarities where a large group of unrelated scoundrels band together for their mutual defense and profit. You would think that a city of thieves would disband immediately in disorder, but time and time again, strong personalities hold the loose association together. Naturally, any civilized person would do well to stay far away. Truly a wonder in this world nonetheless."
  • "The Flamekeeper Conclave hopes to follow in the great Plaram's footsteps, by drawing power from the core of Tanalus. The simple fact that they associate themselves with that madman is enough reason to distrust them, but should they actually emulate his unhinged manner, we would do well to pray. I only take solace in that they are on far away Tanan."
  • "Legends say that one of Chamulsep's unholy vassals took up residence in the swamps of Risia. So much blood was shed by the heroes who deposed him that the marshlands were dyed red. Thus they are known today as the Blood Marsh, and are forever unhallowed."
  • "It's pretty amazing that anything ever gets done around here. Some days, it seems like you can't walk ten feet without tripping over some ancient relic of a dark cult in the midst of a resurgence. Last week a grand, island-spanning conspiracy tried to kidnap my brother just because they thought he was a priest."
  • "And another thing. Why don't we ever see any of these evil dark lords in our day and age? Aren't we good enough for that same level of evil? By Kyrophius's beard, it vexes me."
  • "Tell you what, my cousin said there's a dragon in the marsh. Of course, he hasn't been quite right since that snapter took his ear off, but he said he saw it flyin' over the marsh like it owned the place. 'Course, no idea what it's eatin' out there, unless it likes zombies."
  • "You know what I heard? The mayor of Selaneus was almost killed last week! I heard the assassin actually hid under his bed until nightfall, and it's only because the mayor is really really fat that he's not dead!"
  • "I heard that deep down, all humans are nothing more than savages and cannibals. Um, present company excluded, of course. Oh gods don't eat me!"
  • "Yep, we got a bad case of mroe spiders back when we lived at the edge of the woods. The poor dog never saw it coming."
  • "Honestly now, who in the hells would voluntarily live out in the swamp? It's a deathtrap! Only madmen and fools out thataway."
  • "Did anybody else see a city float overhead last night?"
  • "I swear, I saw it! A great horned hare the size of a house!"
  • "When I was younger, I used to explore some of the abandoned ruins. Then, one time, I ran into a four-headed manticore. And I've stayed in town ever since."
  • "Fog's been gathering off the southern coast... As if ship travel wasn't dangerous enough already."
  • "I saw it! Chak-Tha is here! Run for your lives!"