Uncomfortably Tall Adventures
Feollwheughmn "Finn" Beeoghlaei
Civil turmoil, political intrigue, and some dark secret unbeknownst to his newborn first son, Feollwheughmn, caused the patriarch of House Beeoghlaei, the distinguished Sthiefveighnn Beeoghlaei, to emigrate from his native home in the Feywild to the rolling hills, sweeping forests and misty mountains tall of the Nentir Vale, in the Material Plane.
Steven Bailey and his infant son Finn roamed the Vale until they finally settled on the outskirts of the city of Fallcrest, where Steve immediately began to ply the immense and ancient wealth of his ancestral lineage to establish House Bailey Exports, which quickly grew, due to his well-honed business sense, into one of the largest trading and shipping conglomerates from the Mountains of the Vale to the sandy shores of Knapsackia.
But the Bailey’s fortune was not the only thing that quickly grew in the gilded manse north of the city. For Steven Bailey had traveled light, fleeing the home of his ancestors, cleaving to him only a host of bitter memories and a baby boy whom he was determined would inherit none of them. The following are the stories of that boy and his trials in a world not his own.
A World Not His Own—Chapter One
“Come on little Finn, reach for it,” mesmerizing, bright blue eyes flashed from above a smile of pure love and bliss, “You can do it!” But for the baby boy, the entire world was centered on the wooden rattle, shaking frustratingly just outside of his waiting grip. “Reach, Finn!” But he couldn’t reach his toy. It was too far away. Didn’t the smiling woman know that if she held it just a bit closer—just a few inches, that’s all—he could be reunited with the object of his vain obsession. The infant let out a wail of distress and consternation, the strain of holding his slightly pudgy arms above his head for so long proving too great for his quickly flagging infantile strength. The tips of his already sloped ears were quivering in frustration—and then…CRASH! The rattle exploded into a thousand tiny shards of wood and metal with a sound like booming thunder. And just as the echoes of heavenly bombard died down he just barely heard the kind woman say—or did he imagine it—“I love you, Finn…”
CRASH! Finn Bailey woke with a yell as his keen Eladrin senses were simultaneous assailed from all around him. The clamour of rolling thunder shook even the steady stone beneath his bare back; a torrent of cold stinging rain battered the left side of his face like a great hand of ice; shining scars of unbearable brightness etched themselves across his retinas as lightning forked across the night sky, and his nose and mouth were filled with the tang of ozone.
With another great yell, Finn Bailey took in his surroundings. It was lucky that this wasn’t the first time this had happened or likely he would have fallen the 100 or so feet to his death. The Eladrin youth shielded his stinging eyes and face behind an outstretched forearm and reached deep inside himself to that Place where his power resided and, channeling his astral energy, hastily projected a shield of force to keep out the worst of the rain. Immediately the insistent deluge relented its pulsing bombardment and the surcease allowed Finn a moment to organize his thoughts and take in his surroundings, just as his master had taught him. It took him but a few breathless seconds to determine where he was. The Library Tower!!
The realization hit him like the icy cold of the freezing rain pounding the flag stones beneath him. It was only then that he realized he hadn’t taken a breath since his clamourous awakening moments earlier. Slowing the tri-pattern heart rate of his species pounding away beneath his ribs, Finn was finally able to draw a ragged breath. Regulating his body with meditative focus, Finn pulled himself back from the edge of the tallest tower of Bailey Manour, and away from a deadly plunge to the grounds below. He mentally berated himself for being so foolish as to fall asleep in his father’s tallest tower. After all, he should have known this would happen!
Standing tall, and relinquishing control of the magic keeping the tempest at bay, he took in another deep breath, despite the icy tattoo of freezing rain assaulting his chest. Finn closed his eyes in deep concentration. And then…silence. The crushing blackness of the void—the demons of extra-dimensional terror lurking just beyond the edges of his awareness—no time, no space, no body or mind, just the emptiness of the carnal fey. And then, with the woosh of vacuum and the immediate pounding of escaping air, he was free from the storm. Dripping wet, Finn slowly turned and surveyed his surroundings. The light from his sole oil lamp had burned out long ago atop the dusty pages of the cracked, ancient tome that had been Finn Bailey’s impromptu pillow that night. The only illumination in the darkened library tower was from the sporadic ferocity of the heavenly lights.
Another crash, louder than before. Finn jumped—the imminence of thunder jerking his growing sense of steady, calm awareness back to the dream he had been having—a familiar one. In that instant of cacophonous furor, his world dissolved into the sharp, apoplectic flashes of an Eladrin spirit-memory. The shaking of the rattle…sunlight streaming through an opening in the roof…a glowing halo framing the golden hair of the smiling woman…the woman who was his mother…the staccato crackle of splintering wood Finn gasped and fell to one knee, riding out the intensity of his arcana-imbued memory with clenched teeth and hands clawing at his temples.
After a brief moment of agonized eternity, Finn reopened his eyes, and as the last vestiges of the memory faded—that first time he had ever reached out with something other than his hands and tasted the terrible, destructive power that lived within him—faded like the strident echoes of distant thunder, he thought he could faintly hear—or did he imagine it—the woman’s voice, “I love you, Finn…”