“Gathering what else I could, I came to Distontay and to the City of Ebony where I found hope of new birth as a smith of steel. But such trade bores me as it requires not the skill of a shard smith, and I have lost interest.
-Nobaph, the Shard Smith
At first, the insertion of Nobaph into the storyline of Fauldon’s Dream was just a passing whim–I was not intent of making much of him other than a fun gesture of the under-kept, overworked citizens of Obliviouseh. However, the character quickly took his own form apart from my original judgement and my intrigue grew.
For one: what in the realm of the Outlands of Outreach? Where are these lands? Why were they in such state of decay as Nobaph spoke of? What happened? When? How?
Well, in his own words, he speaks briefly upon the Outlands of Outreach:
It is the fields of Outreach that taint the mind. Our forests draw apart as crevices spread, craters grow, and abyssal veins stretch ever onward and through. The roots of our trees lack the nourishment they once had and turn to feed off the smoldering abyss–poisoning the shards once vibrant and full. Empty they now are, and empty I had become until I could bear it no longer. So I fled, for my addiction to them was then being fed by the abyss that haunted the Outlands of Outreach.
But what of the stark contrast to what they were before? Shard smiths truly were a sight to behold in their work, and while not much is giving in answer to the lingering questions, there is a man in pursuit of their untainted history.
Again, we might turn to the findings and delvings of the Wanderous Nomadicus. As foretold within the text of Encyclopedia of the Lands of Euphora:
The Outlands of Outreach were once covered in vast, deep, mystical forests. Ingrained in the bark of those ancient trees were shards of the most peculiar and special substance only known to exist there. Much like the crystals nurtured and crafted deep within the crust of earth, so the gems hid within the layered woods of the forests once plenty.
The folk that dwelled those lands were the Shard Smiths of old. It was their tradition to seek those shards that might be found and to craft them into magnificent things. To this day their artifacts are sought after–especially since the Divide of the Roots.
For reasons unknown, the lands of Outreach fell victim to a wide-spread corruption which soon spoiled the shards and the trees that bore them. Crippled and in decay, the pride of the Outlands soon withered and most fled the vastly uninhabitable terrain. The canyon that separates the Outlands of Outreach from Distontay has grown too vast and treacherous for journeying, and trade to the lands has since ceased. The folk that dwelled and the pride it bore now faints and is only spoken of in whisper. It is now only the Outreach–for it is out of reach and even more distant from the Mainland.
But not all of the traditions and histories have withered away. Though most of the records of the Outlands have been lost, those that remain are slowly being translated and collected into a single history.
And who else to do this than none other than the Wanderous Nomadicus! Yes, it is true that no bridge remains that crosses over into the Outreach, but there are other means of travel in the Realm of Euphora–one must only look to the sky above. For where the turtle-whales caressed the veins of silky wateriness that spread throughout, one might find means of unexpected travel… *cliffhanger-of-inconvenience*
Meanwhile, back to Nomad and Nobaph (like seriously, why all the “N’s”?), Nom–as some call him in short–will seek out the stories and histories Nobaph has yet to tell. For though Mr Fauldon was told briefly of the man’s past and reasons to reside in the City of Ebony, Nomad seeks to delve into the why’s, how’s, and when’s. Nobaph has much left to tell and much more is to be learned since his rekindled hope in Mr Fauldon’s departure.
But one question still lingers strongly: will Nomad have what it takes to quench the stench of Nobaph during the irrefutable journey back into the Outlands of Outreach?
All this and uber tons more in the slowly-but-surely upcoming unraveling sequel to Fauldon’s Dream–as told through the discoveries and uncoveries of the Great and Wanderous Nomadicus!