Trade Article: The Way of the Warrior — a personal tale, by Elowan of Wind

Preface | Introduction | The beginning ... | Thy education ... | The Flower of Britannia | Black magic ... | Training up — as a beginner; as a novice; as an adept; as a master | Virtue Shield | The Noto killer | Some days it doesn't pay ... | I lose my Shield ... | A tale of two thieves | A tale of etiquette | The Lich — revisited | Elowan's Guide to Dungeon Delving

hen I speak of 'black' magic I do not mean necromancy — though necromancy is a black art indeed. Fortunately, necromancy is not practiced much in the Land but there are unsettling rumors to the effect that it may be making a comeback.

But, there are other black arts afoot in some areas and many an otherwise honest or honorable person has been seduced by this 'wild power'. I refer specifically to the selling of one's soul for the purpose of gaining certain advantages to ones basic skills — such as magery, magic resistance and the like. I say selling one's soul because once this step has been taken there is no turning back and one such act begets another.

Many of these twisted and altered people are appearing within the Land but — thankfully — not for long. Since Lord British has been powerless or reluctant to proceed against them, it has fallen to the Great God himself — OSI — to take a hand. As a consequence, more and more of these fell creatures are disappearing from Britannia and whether they will ever be seen again walking the face of the Land is known only to OSI — but I doubt it. Terrible indeed is the wrath of OSI when his 'back is up'.

This is a good thing in my opinion since many blatant murderers have done this thing of an evil purpose and deserve no better fate. However, I do know that some innocents have been exposed to this power through no fault of their own. Some of these feel that it is only just recompense for their being disadvantaged in some way. These people know who they are and I strongly advise them to supplicate to the OSI through his direct minions the GM's rather than attempt an audience with our Lord British. This may prevent their sudden removal from our fair land. These evils are often referred to in the vernacular as: "sploits" and have other names such as "duping".

Some say that the evil-doers should be warned that this fate awaits them should they resist. I ask why should they be warned? They had the choice between good and evil and they chose the latter. They can only have done so if this was their basic nature. Warning should not be given. Mere slaps on the wrist are insufficient. There is evil enough without molly-coddling those who would subvert the world to their evil ways. Besides, these persons will always find a way to utilize these black arts if given the chance and not erasing them gives them that chance; to the complete and utter detriment of the reasonable people of this Land.

In my view these "sploits" are traps laid by the evil Lords of Gehenna and are there to destroy the unwary. If thou wert to sell thy soul to gain advantage in such a manner, how could it be possible to take any pride in thy accomplishment? Every person that I have met who chose these temptations has ultimately descended into evil. Even their view of the world has been distorted. Do not, I beseech thee, fall prey to this temptation. It is not the Way of the Warrior.

Some of my more fundamentalist brethren classify the use of these magical devices as "sploits" and decry the practice as a cheat. I fail to see the similarity between this repetitive or 'rote' means and circumventing the natural laws of Britannia through exploitation. These devices do nothing more than streamline the process of learning. True they have been abused in the past and probably still will be in the future. But intoxicating beverages can also be abused as can the ability to kill thy fellow man. Is it a "sploit" when I cast a fire field within my tower to maintain my magic resistance? Is it a "sploit" when I ask my neighbor — a so-called Dread Lord — to summon a water elemental for me to fight? I think not. Is there some "rule" from on high that mandates that thou mayest not learn two things at once? There is none that I am aware of. Lose no sleep over it, I pray. (see also: Using Macros).

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