Ancient days they were when first the Shianti set foot upon the land that men call Magnamund. Long had they journeyed through the void, homeless wanderers in search of a place to call their own. And so it was that when the Shianti first looked upon the face of the land, their hearts were raised in wonder. They saw a world of nameless mountains, untamed forests, and lands both wild and free. Here they chose to cease their wanderings and to devote themselves to the study and appreciation of this newfound land.
To the delight of the Shianti, the race of man first emerged at this time and they watched his early struggle towards civilization with eager concern. Like gods, the Shianti seemed to the minds of primitive men. Tall and proud, shining with a radiance that spoke of magic and arcane mystery, the Shianti moved among them and with their powers of wizardry, aided man in his development.
As the centuries passed, man fell to worship of the magical Shianti and the power of these wizards grew even stronger. With hungry hearts they sought to unlock the mysteries of knowledge, sending their minds into other planes of existence and strange worlds beyond the sphere of the material plane. Their foresight was now unmatched and the power of their thought was mighty indeed. It was at this time that they created the Moonstone. Woven of the very fabric of the astral plane of Daziarn, this translucent gem was the greatest achievement of Shianti wisdom. It was the binding force of all Shianti magic, containing the combined might of all their wizardry, the sum of all their knowledge. The Golden Age of the Shianti had come and the Moonstone was the instrument of their dominion throughout all Magnamund. Man stood as little more than a shadow, blinded by the shining white light of Shianti glory. But, in creating the Moonstone, the unwritten laws of nature had been transgressed. For the Moonstone, like the Shianti themselves, was something outside of man’s own world; it defied the natural order laid down by the creators of Magnamund and disrupted the balance that the gods had designed.
The Goddess Ishir, High Priestess of the Moon and mother of all men, showed herself to the Shianti and spoke to them of the destiny of man: ‘The children of this world must claim their inheritance. Their time has come and they must learn to stand alone. They are lost in their worship of you and the day draws ever nearer when they will covet the power of the Moonstone.’
And the Shianti said: ‘Forgive us, Great Goddess, for we intended no harm. We love mankind even as you do. We have sought to do good and protect your children from harm.’
But Ishir replied, ‘Of this there can be no doubt, but this world is not your realm. Man must be free to pursue his destiny alone, and you must leave, for you trespass on his domain.’
The Shianti were filled with sorrow. They feared a return to the void and to their lonely wandering, and pleaded with Ishir that she might allow them to remain. Ishir was filled with pity for them. She spoke again, saying, ‘If you are to remain, you must obey my command. You must take a vow never to interfere with mankind’s fate. As a token of good faith you must lay aside the Moonstone, and return it to the plane where it belongs.’
Solemnly, the Shianti agreed. The vow was sworn before Ishir, and the Moonstone was returned to the Daziarn. The Shianti then moved south to the Isle of Lorn. They encircled their new home with a web of enchantments, magical mists, and mage winds to prevent man from ever finding their place of refuge in the Sea of Dreams.
Knowledge of the Shianti faded with time, save in southern Magnamund where it became enshrined in legend, and the worship of them endured. Priests of the Shianti religion preserved their teachings and patiently awaited the day when the ‘ancient ones’ would return, bringing with them lasting peace and the blessing of a new golden age.
Two thousand years strode by and man advanced as Ishir had foretold. He built great cities and cultivated the land; his kingdoms rose and fell; he made war and loved and laughed and became master of his fate. But a new power was emerging in the province of Shadaki. There Shasarak the evil Wytch-king ruled. The black necromancer commanded an army of brutal soldiers and had a devoted following of men who upheld his religion of demonic worship and sacrificial rites. Devotees of the Shianti and other religious cults were persecuted in a merciless purge. Ruthlessly, the Wytch-king destroyed all his opponents and began a terrible war with the peoples of the neighbouring provinces. From the ruins of war Shasarak shaped the Shadakine Empire, subjugating whole nations to his evil rule. As the provinces fell to his might, the Shianti looked on helplessly, bound by their vow to the Goddess Ishir never to interfere in the affairs of man.
On the night of the crowning of Shasarak as Overlord of the Shadakine Empire, a great storm broke upon the Sea of Dreams, a storm that raged with unnatural intensity. Lashed by wind and rain, illuminated by wild lightning, the waters heaved and danced in fury to the thundering music of the storm, unchecked by even the enchantments of the Shianti. When finally the tempest died, the Shianti looked out in amazement on the shattered hull of a ship drifting towards their shore. Never before had this occurred, for the enchantments and mage winds had kept them secure from the curiosity of man by forcing him to sail close to his own land.
The Shianti went quickly to the ruined ship where they found only one survivor—a baby. They perceived the sudden arrival of this human child as a sign of great portent, and they conceived a plan by which they might lawfully aid mankind. They named the orphan child Grey Star, because a star is the symbol of hope in the Shianti faith, and because of the silver streak in the child’s jet-black hair. In the shadow of the wrath of the Goddess Ishir, they raised the child as one of their own and taught him their secrets. Diligently they set about their instruction, for their aim was to provide a saviour for mankind. Armed with the might of Shianti wizardry and wisdom, their hope was to create an adversary equal in power to the evil Wytch-king of Shadaki, for they realized that only with the death of Shasarak would man once more be free to determine his destiny.
You are Grey Star, trained in the ancient lore of a Shianti wizard. For sixteen years you have dwelt in safety on the Isle of Lorn, the hidden realm of the magical Shianti race, until Acarya, High Wizard of the Shianti, sent you upon a dangerous quest to save your people, the race of man, from the evil rule of Shasarak, the tyrannical Wytch-king of the Shadakine Empire. Held by their ancient vow to the Goddess Ishir, the Shianti are unable to leave their island and come to the aid of man themselves but no such promise prohibited you from leaving the island and you were sent to recover the Moonstone and use its power to defeat the Wytch-king.
The Moonstone, an artefact that possesses the combined force of all Shianti wisdom and power, was hidden on the Daziarn plane and you first had to find the invisible gateway to the Daziarn, the Shadow Gate. To help you find the Shadow Gate, you sought the Lost Tribe of Lara, a race of magical but primitive creatures called the Kundi, who possess the gift of astral vision, enabling them to see magic portals and gateways to other planes and dimensions. When Shasarak’s Shadakine army first invaded the free provinces of the south, they came through the forests of the Mountains of Lara where the Kundi lived, and were constantly ambushed and delayed by the Kundi. The Kundi always eluded them, disappearing into the dense forest before the Shadakine could retaliate and, finally, in wrath, the Wytch-king burnt down the forests and forced the Kundi to flee south. No one knew where they came to rest.
Voyaging across the Sea of Dreams, you came first to the city of Suhn, the largest port in the Shadakine Empire. There you were befriended by a cheerful merchant named Shan Li, a widely travelled man. Your questions about the Lost Tribe aroused suspicion in Suhn and you were captured and taken to the House of Correction, the prison of Suhn, and subjected to the truthsay of Mother Magri, Shadakine Wytch and Law-giver. With the aid of the power of the Kazim Stone, she attempted to read your mind, but you were able to preserve the secret of your quest.
With the help of Tanith, a young and beautiful girl learning the ways of wytchcraft in the service of Mother Magri, you were able to escape from the House of Correction. With Shan as your guide, you eventually turned south and headed towards the region known as the Azanam, for it seemed likely that the Lost Tribe had settled there. However, again using the power of the Kazim Stone, Mother Magri summoned a Kleasá against you—a demon shadow that feeds upon the soul. Neither your Magical Powers, nor the might of your Wizard’s Staff were able to defeat the Kleasá, and it had almost destroyed you when Tanith cast a spell and called the demon against herself. She was totally consumed by the Kleasá and both disappeared in flames. Her brave sacrifice saved your life.
At the Azanam you found the Kundi and they gave you their Shaman, Urik the Wise, to guide you to the Shadow Gate. You travelled across the hostile lands of the Shadakine Empire and, close to the gates of the city of Karnali, you freed a man named Samu, a former king of the extinct tribe of the Masbaté, from a Shadakine slave train. Then the leader of the rebel Freedom Guild, Sado of the Long Knife, enlisted your aid in freeing the city of Karnali from the rule of its Shadakine Wytch and her warriors, but you did not stay, for still you had to find the Shadow Gate. You journeyed on, accompanied by Samu, Urik, and a thief by the name of Hugi. On this later stage of your journey, you discovered that Shasarak was once a Shianti Master. So now you know your eventual confrontation will be with one versed in the same magical arts as yourself. You finally found the Shadow Gate beneath the wasteland of Desolation Valley, only to discover that the magic portal was guarded by a demon Kleasá, holding in its grasp Tanith, who had not after all been slain in her attempt to save you. Instead, the Kleasá had offered her to its master, Shasarak, as a prisoner. Using Tanith as a shield, the Kleasá withstood your attempts to gain entry to the Daziarn portal but at last you managed to force the Kleasá away from the Shadow Gate and stepped through to be reunited with Tanith.
Together you entered the Daziarn plane which held many mysteries and perils, the worst of which was the Jahksa, a creature created in your likeness by Shasarak. You travelled through this strange, abstract world until, at last, you came to the Trianon, a chamber floating in the void. Within the Trianon was the Moonstone and, after a last paradoxical confrontation with the Jahksa in which the lawful and magical effects of the Moonstone were used, the Jahksa was defeated and the Moonstone made yours.
With the Moonstone now resting in your hand, you begin the final part of your quest to defeat the Wytch-king. Armed with the might of the Moonstone, you now possess the only known power that can destroy Shasarak the renegade Shianti Wizard.
To keep a record of your adventure, use the Action Chart.
Before you set off on your adventure, you must discover how well your Shianti masters have prepared you for your quest by determining your fighting prowess—COMBAT SKILL—your state of mind—WILLPOWER—and your physical stamina—ENDURANCE. To do this take a pencil and, with eyes closed, point with the blunt end of it onto the Random Number Table. If you pick 0 it counts as zero.
The first number that you pick from the Random Number Table in this way represents your COMBAT SKILL. Add 10 to the number you picked and write the total in the COMBAT SKILL section of your Action Chart (e.g. if your pencil fell on the number 4 in the Random Number Table you would write in a COMBAT SKILL of 14). When you fight, your COMBAT SKILL will be pitted against that of your enemy. A high score in this section is therefore very desirable.
The second number that you need is one to represent your WILLPOWER. Do not use the Random Number Table. You begin this adventure with a WILLPOWER total of 50, as your first touch of the Moonstone of the Shianti regenerates your Magical Powers immediately. If you possess unused WILLPOWER points from earlier Grey Star adventures, add them to the 50 WILLPOWER points which possession of the Moonstone grants you. Write the total in the WILLPOWER section of your Action Chart. If you decide to use a spell or the power of your Wizard’s Staff, then you will lose WILLPOWER points. If at any time your WILLPOWER falls to zero, or below, you may not use any spells or any additional WILLPOWER points in combat to increase the ENDURANCE loss of an opponent. Lost WILLPOWER points can be regained during the course of the adventure and it is possible for your WILLPOWER score to rise above the total with which you start your adventure.
The third attribute is your power of ENDURANCE. You start with a total of 30 ENDURANCE points when your first touch of the Moonstone fills your body with energy and power. Add any ENDURANCE points gained from playing previous Grey Star adventures to your initial score of 30 and write the total in the ENDURANCE section of your Action Chart. If you are wounded in combat, you will lose ENDURANCE points. If at any time your ENDURANCE score falls to zero or below, you are dead and the adventure is over. Lost ENDURANCE points can be regained during the course of the adventure but can never rise above the number with which you began the adventure.
There are thirteen Magical Powers, the first seven of which are called the Lesser Magicks. Possession of the Moonstone reveals to you the secret of the Magical Powers known as the Higher Magicks, of which there are six. If this is your first Grey Star adventure, you may choose five Lesser Magicks and four Higher Magicks. If you have successfully completed any of the previous Grey Star adventures, you may choose six Lesser Magicks and five Higher Magicks.
The Magical Powers available to you are listed below. When you have chosen your powers enter them in the Magical Powers section of your Action Chart.
This Power allows a wizard to transform his thoughts or desires into magical energy. By concentration of the will it is possible to create magical shields of force to bar doors or move objects. Sorcery drains more WILLPOWER points than any other Magical Power, and is most effective when your WILLPOWER points are high.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Sorcery’ on your Action Chart.
The Power of Enchantment enables a wizard to charm or beguile other creatures, and create illusions in the minds of others. He will be able to extract information from others, place thoughts and compulsions into another’s mind, or cause them to believe that imaginary events are actually taking place. Some magical or highly intelligent beings may be immune to the powers of Enchantment.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Enchantment’ on your Action Chart.
The Power of elemental magic allows a wizard some control over the natural elements of Air, Fire, Earth, and Water. By entering a trance and chanting incantations, you may summon aid from the spirits of the Elemental Plane. Elementals have very little understanding of man, and for this reason a wizard can never be sure of the nature of the aid the Elementals may send.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Elementalism’ on your Action Chart.
A wizard who possesses the Power of Alchemy is able, through the mixing of various substances, to create magical potions. Given the correct ingredients, a potion may restore lost energy (i.e. ENDURANCE points, WILLPOWER), or temporarily improve various abilities (e.g. COMBAT SKILL). The use of Alchemy may also allow a wizard to alter the nature of substances (e.g. change lead into gold), but the necessary ingredients and the correct equipment (e.g. a pestle and mortar) must be at hand. The use of the Power of Alchemy drains no WILLPOWER.
If you choose this Power write ‘Alchemy’ on your Action Chart.
The Power of Prophecy allows a wizard to foretell the future through meditation. A meditative state will allow a wizard to make the correct decision when facing conflicting choices or difficult actions; to discover the whereabouts of a person he has once met, or an object he has once seen. It may also allow him to determine the true nature of a stranger or a strange object. Magical beings or objects are sometimes hidden from the Power of Prophecy.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Prophecy’ on your Action Chart.
This Power bestows upon a wizard the ability to deduce facts about events by touching objects connected to them. Through deep concentration, a wizard may lay his hands upon any inanimate object and visualize scenes that have affected it. Visions brought about through the use of Psychomancy are often cryptic, taking the form of a riddle or puzzle. Some magic items are resistant to the use of Psychomancy and may, sometimes, impart misleading information.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Psychomancy’ on your Action Chart.
Mastery of this Power permits contact with the spirit realm. A wizard wishing to speak with the dead, or to call up a form from the spirit world, must draw a magic pentacle and enter a trance, when the use of the correct spell-chant will reach out to the Spiritual Plane. Standing within the protection of a magic pentacle, a wizard may consider himself to be relatively safe from harm. If he wishes to speak with a corpse, especially one whose former life was good and righteous, then a wizard can expect help and advice. However, contact with those whose former lives were evil or selfish can be a perilous, and often fatal, experience. Evil spirits are reluctant to return to the realm of the dead and may try to trick a wizard into freeing them into the world of the living. All spirits, good and evil, will require some service of the wizard in return for their aid. Any failure to perform this task, however difficult, may result in the wizard losing his life.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Evocation’ on your Action Chart.
This Higher Magick is an advanced form of Sorcery, the craft of magical energy. Where Sorcery allows a wizard to affect external things, Thaumaturgy affects the wizard himself. The Power of Thaumaturgy can bestow upon a wizard the power of levitation, a limited form of flying; invulnerability and increased strength; the ability to bend metal or warp wood by disturbing their molecules; and, perhaps the most useful of all, teleportation, that is, the ability to travel great distances in seconds by simply visualizing the destination.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Thaumaturgy’ on your Action Chart.
An advanced form of Enchantment, Telergy is the Power of mind control, telepathy, and autosuggestion. It enhances the tangibility of the illusions of Enchantment and allows you to control the minds of others. However, like Enchantment, some magical beings will be able to resist this Power.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Telergy’ on your Action Chart.
Where Elementalism allows a wizard to summon the aid of the elemental spirits, the Higher Magick of Physiurgy grants the wizard mastery over the elements. It allows him to command winds, open cracks in the earth, cause earthquakes, raise storms, and create other weather effects.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Physiurgy’ on your Action Chart.
Theurgy is an advanced form of Alchemy. Possession of the Moonstone of the Shianti makes the casting of a larger number of spells possible. It unlocks the knowledge of more ingredients for mixing potions and reveals some of the special times, or ways, that they must be mixed. The power of the Moonstone acts as a charm for these potions. No WILLPOWER points are required to make use of the Power of Theurgy but you are dependent on discovering the necessary ingredients for your potions during the course of your adventure.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Theurgy’ on your Action Chart.
With the aid of the Moonstone, you may use the skill of a Visionary to look upon events that are taking place elsewhere. The Power of a Visionary is generally concerned with visual images of the present.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Visionary’ on your Action Chart.
Necromancy is a higher form of Evocation. Where Evocation allows contact with the spirit world, Necromancy allows a wizard to command the dead, though this is forbidden by Shianti law. It also allows him to make an incantation that will imbue the Moonstone with a protective aura of light to keep away all creatures of evil, dead or alive.
If you choose this Power, write ‘Necromancy’ on your Action Chart.
Your Staff is your most valuable possession. It looks and feels like an ordinary quarterstaff, yet it is stronger than any known metal. This is your main combat weapon, for you are untrained in the use of any other form of armed combat. It contains a potent force that is unleashed at will by the power of your mind, and causes a beam of destructive power to hurtle from its tip. Every time you unleash this power you must deduct 1 WILLPOWER point.
In the event that your enemy survives such an attack or should you fall victim to a surprise attack, you will be forced to engage in close combat and must attempt to strike your enemy with the Staff. If your attack is successful, a bolt of energy will be released from the Staff that is capable of inflicting great physical harm. If you wish to increase the amount of damage that you inflict in this way, you must use more WILLPOWER points and multiply the number of ENDURANCE points lost by the enemy, accordingly. For example, if you chose to expend 3 WILLPOWER points on your attack, all enemy ENDURANCE point losses would be multiplied by three.
If you enter combat without your Staff, deduct 6 points from your COMBAT SKILL. If you have no weapon at all, you must deduct 8 points from your COMBAT SKILL.
The Moonstone has many attributes, some of which are described in the Higher Magicks section and some of which you will discover during the course of your adventure. The Shianti have also given it the power to teleport you to Shasarak once during the course of your adventure. You will be told of that opportunity when the time is right.
You wear the grey robe and hooded cloak of a Shianti Wizard. Your only weapon is your Wizard’s Staff (note this on your Action Chart under Weapons). You wear a Backpack containing 4 Meals (note under Meals on your Action Chart), and you have been given a map of the Shadakine Empire (note under Special Items on your Action Chart), which you place inside your robe.
If you have chosen Alchemy or Theurgy as one of your Magical Powers, then you will have a leather pouch for herbs and potions hanging from your belt. The Herb Pouch contains the following:
Mark these 4 items in your Action Chart.
Your Herb Pouch will carry a maximum of eight items.
Now that you have your equipment, the following list shows you how it is carried. You do not need to make notes, but you should refer back to this list in the course of your adventure.
Any weapons and Special Items that you possess as a result of completing previous Grey Star adventures should be entered on the Action Chart.
Any item that may be of use and can be picked up on your adventure and entered on your Action Chart is given capital letters in the text. Unless you are told it is a Special Item, carry it in your Backpack.
There will be occasions during your adventure when you have to fight an enemy. The enemy’s COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE points are given in the text. Grey Star’s aim during the combat is to kill the enemy by reducing his ENDURANCE points to zero while at the same time losing as few ENDURANCE points as possible himself.
At the start of a combat, enter Grey Star’s ENDURANCE and WILLPOWER points and the enemy’s ENDURANCE points in the appropriate boxes on the Combat Record section of your Action Chart.
The sequence for combat is as follows:
This process of combat continues until the ENDURANCE points of either the enemy or Grey Star are reduced to zero or below, at which point that combatant is declared dead. If Grey Star is dead, the adventure is over. If the enemy is dead, Grey Star proceeds but with his ENDURANCE and WILLPOWER points possibly reduced.
A summary of Combat Rules appears in the back of this book.
During your adventure you may be given the chance to evade combat. If you have already engaged in a round of combat and decide to evade, calculate the combat for that round in the usual manner. All points lost by the enemy as a result of that round are ignored, and you make your escape. Only Grey Star may lose ENDURANCE points during that round, but then that is the risk of running away! You may only evade if the text of the particular section allows you to do so.
Now begins the last and most dangerous stage of your quest to vanquish the Wytch-king, Shasarak. Beware, for you must face many dangers before you are able to confront him at last.
You will find items that might be of assistance on your quest. Some Special Items will help you, others may be of no use at all. You must decide what to keep.
Special care must be taken when selecting your Magical Powers. Make sure that your combination of Higher and Lesser Magicks covers every eventuality. Also, it is worth remembering that some of these Magical Powers will be of little use to you during this part of your quest: choose the Powers you think you are most likely to require at this stage.
Be cautious in your use of WILLPOWER points, as your WILLPOWER is the energy source for both your Magical Powers and your Wizard’s Staff. If you have a low WILLPOWER score when you confront Shasarak, you may be easily defeated.
Follow the path of wisdom, Wizard Grey Star. The way of fools is the road to destruction!