The Heir to Disaster

Session 19.9.5
Tassology
View
Session 21
Elansory
View
Session 20
Echoes and Mirrors

Aelish returns, thanks to Leo’s spell. (fourth position, splendid raiment)
Ditto A’Kelah (fetal position, nothing but magic items)

Suspicion over Aelish, not for A’Kelah. Elaina stands up for Aelish.
Sascha likely gone.

Long hours talking over what is to be done. Perren announces his intentions to help Oksana by investigating what’s happened to the Magi, but he won’t say where.

Aelish wants to go the capital, as Almdor has told her that they’ve been going about their great endeavor all wrong. En route, Aodh receives a miraculous vision of Aelish, containing a divine message from her for him. The halfling confides in Leonidas only about that, though Gage overhears with his keen hearing.

Perren and the Swiftlight takes the Starhunters as a far as the outskirts of Antor before he is away again into the clouds. They make their way south, finding the road which ultimately leads back to Vorhon in the other direction. They find lodging in the coaching house Makar’s Home in the town of Etrotha, just outside the capital. Aelish keeps to herself. A’Kelah listens for gossip. Fendrys, Aodh, and Leo plot their next move.

View
Session 19.9
Strange Visitors
View
Session 19.8
Ill News is an Ill Guest
View
Session 19.7
Name Saying
View
Session 19.6
Memory and Thought
View
Session 19.5
Stepping Sideways

If I ventured in the slipstream
Between the viaducts of your dream
Where immobile steel rims crack
And the ditch in the back roads stop
Could you find me?
Would you kiss-a my eyes?
To lay me down
In silence easy
To be born again
To be born again
From the far side of the ocean
If I put the wheels in motion
And I stand with my arms behind me
And I’m pushin’ on the door
Could you find me?
Would you kiss-a my eyes?
To lay me down
In silence easy
To be born again
To be born again
There you go
Standin’ with the look of avarice
Talkin’ to Huddie Ledbetter
Showin’ pictures on the wall
Whisperin’ in the hall
And pointin’ a finger at me
There you go, there you go
Standin’ in the sun darlin’
With your arms behind you
And your eyes before
There you go
Takin’ good care of your boy
Seein’ that he’s got clean clothes
Puttin’ on his little red shoes
I see you know he’s got clean clothes
A-puttin’ on his little red shoes
A-pointin’ a finger at me
And here I am
Standing in your sad arrest
Trying to do my very best
Lookin’ straight at you
Comin’ through, darlin’
Yeah, yeah, yeah
If I ventured in the slipstream
Between the viaducts of your dreams
Where immobile steel rims crack
And the ditch in the back roads stop
Could you find me
Would you kiss-a my eyes
Lay me down
In silence easy
To be born again
To be born again
To be born again
In another world
In another world
In another time
Got a home on high
Ain’t nothing but a stranger in this world
I’m nothing but a stranger in this world
I got a home on high
In another land
So far away
So far away
Way up in the heaven
Way up in the heaven
Way up in the heaven
Way up in the heaven
In another time
In another place
In another time
In another place
Way up in the heaven
Way up in the heaven
We are goin’ up to heaven
We are goin’ to heaven
In another time
In another place
In another time
In another place
In another face

View
Session 19
Goriseld

At first, the sage Goriseld is certain his visitors are here to arrest him and bring him to the capital to the share fate of so many of the University’s magi. Though he is a retired wizard, living a secluded life on his land by the lake, alone and at peace, he has been in contact at least with ‘Lukya’. She has kept him apprised of events near the capital—of the imprisoned Agrafena, of the collected magi, and the political turmoil. Goriseld welcomes them all into his home which is an old Vartuskan temple ruin, kept in semi-repair now as a sprawling garden.

The humble country wisdom of Aodh’s fine people means that warm, soothing cook fires and clanking pots attend the long hearth-side talks of the next two days. While the halfling is busy, hopping from stool to stool, using his stone hands as spice-grinders, the sage is told the tale of the Starhunters, and of Oksana (who drops her incognito guise here). Her Royal Providence seeks a council on her next move, for she remembers Goriseld as a trusted confidant during her younger days under Almdor’s tutelage.

===============

Oksana would know if she should return to Castle Slatewind and deal with her mistake there. Should she free the captured magi and rally them to her cause or should she raise a conventional army and retake the capital by traditional force, embroiling herself in the civil war? Goriseld cautions against the Castle and its dangerous pagan monks. Leonidas and A’Kelah both argue in favor of courting the magi to further her aims. Aelish pleads caution, favoring a conventional military and political strategy as a show of lordly force.

All this while, Perren and his crew stay mostly aboard the Swiftlight so as not to overwhelm their host. The dashing treasure-hunter plots a return to Lost Lokken and redress for the death of Jaina.

While in Goriseld’s home, the Starhunters have a chance to learn more secrets of the magic they carry with them. Fendrys trades with the sage the obsidian shield found in Lokken for an elven hauberk of bright mail. Goriseld tells him it was the armor of Galan Ardryll, an elven hero of old and friend of Marquis Almdor. Goriseld seems happy the armor can be put to use again in exchange for a brilliant new mantle-piece. A’Kelah too trades, offering 50 of her prized dragon scales. In return, he gifts her with a ‘Scarab of Protection’ that will ward against the evils of the undead (which figure in the foretelling of the Watcher’s visions). Goriseld explains to Aelish the properties of her ‘Eversmoking Bottle’, such that she no longer desires to possess it. Leonidas meets privately with the sage, discussing other matters.

===============

Importantly, the crystal ball recovered from the goblin bounty hunters is also shown to the old man. Goriseld finds it magic impenetrable, mysterious, and perhaps dangerous. He argues they should be rid of it, fearing a curse or some or other sinister force.

Also during this interlude, A’Kelah is asked by Goriseld to return here so that she might examine the deep sunken roots of ‘an old elven tree gone bad in his lake’. Aelish meets with Zita and the two talk of Eladriel and of Oksana. Aelish gives Zita her signet ring and asks her to spread the truth of her holy mission. Zita is moved to tears and vows it will be done.

Deep in the night, with dawn only hours away, Lukiria Vanator arrives—in her inimitable way—by magic teleportation. Cautious Aodh is the only one roused by this disturbance, and Lukiria is being very secretive. Later in the morning, they learn ‘Lukya’ has a young girl with her, Marietta, and that said girl is injured. The two repair to Goriseld’s tower, where others are forbidden; little is seen of them. Marietta is in pain, and frightened of so many strangers. Lukya is so protective of her, she spares no time for pleasantries despite her prior ‘acquaintance’ with the Starhunters.

===============

Though suspicious and curious of Lukiria and her young charge, the Starhunters can spare no more time with the Goriseld and his peaceful, garden home by the lakeside. Early on the morning of Crowning, 5th of Terentius, they are off. Following a rapid farewell to Goriseld, Oksana, and Zita Nemeth, the Swiftlight carries them all aloft once more.

En route to Hinturnal, ideas are put forth about what should be done with the dangerous crystal ball. Some say it should be tossed overboard, others argue to keep it, but out of sight. Fendrys blindsides everyone by suggesting the device be fired out of one of the Swiftlight’s cannons (a decision he will come to rue for the rest of his days). Opinions are mixed on this plan. Hoff, Elaina, and Gage are stridently opposed to the proposal. Perren, however, as captain of his ship and owner of his cannon carries the day by favoring this “once in a lifetime chance!” Sascha volunteers to ignite the gun, being fearless of powder toxin. Everyone keeps a safe distance—some even remain on the Swiftlight—away from the cannon which gets moved to a ground position.

===============

The fuse is touched. The spark burns down in four heartbeats time. The cannon explodes in a splatter of wild ether set forth by the detonated magic glass! Sascha is thrown from the scene. A fiery, purplish, scintillating miasma of magic energy and reality distortion hangs in the air after the explosion. Emerging from this vortex is a giant floating eye ringed with tentacles, each tipped with yet more eyes. The alien eye-beast assaults Rashid, Fendrys, Aelish, and A’Kelah with deadly spell-like rays that issue from its many optics. A’Kelah is pulled toward the creature with an inexorable force. Rashid is slain outright, his mind overcome by a psychic blast. Fendrys is held in check, being shown his worst fears as the shuddersome thing witnesses his mind. Aelish however, strides forward to meet the creature, confidently bolstered and sanctified by her unshakable faith. Leonidas and Aodh are quickly conducted to the scene from the deck by his magic while Perren and crew rush to their battle stations.

Aodh joins Fendrys is his arrow assault as Leonidas rallies behind with warcry and song to drown out the thing’s mind-twisting powers. A’Kelah, pulled up close, is bitten savagely. Therefore she moves to protect herself with her bead of force. But this only makes it effortless for the creature to fling her, bead and all, behind it and into the vortex. With A’Kelah no longer in the way, Leonidas, Aodh, and Fendrys all have clear shots. The beast is slain—its death signals the end of the vortex. Aelish bravely leaps into the fast closing vortex after her companion, hurriedly handing a length of rope to Fendrys on her way. The ranger, still terrified and in shock, reflexively tugs with all his might on the rope, yanking it entirely from Aelish before she can finish tying it to her waist. The vortex closes. Aelish and A’Kelah are gone from the world.

EXP
Aelish 1700
A’Kelah 1200
Aodh 1200
Fendrys 1200
Leonidas 1200

View
Session 18
The Heir to Disaster

The elemental backlash of the Strondkard Lawstone, being so ‘hot’ and ‘dry’ overwhelms the sea-born veer, A’Kelah, who is a sorceress of the cold, watery Lurker. A’Kelah has fallen into a daze that even magic will not countermand. At Mytha Petraea, some of the mystic power there was encouraged to find a home in Aodh, and here again the Starhunters use their union to coax a similar power into A’Kelah—fearing the backlash has killed her and the power may spare her life. What this power is and how it might manifest, they do not yet know.

After realizing A’Kelah cannot be roused, Oksana is helped to her feet by Aelish. The two women have an abrupt conversation, but are cut short by encircling wyverns. These creatures, small as dragons go, but large by any other measure have appeared perhaps from the volcano, or else attracted to its eruption, or as a Titan’s response to the angel’s deific intervention. Whatever the case, they have drifted above like vultures before swooping down to attack. Monks from the adjacent castle arrive on the scene to defend their home, trapping the Starhunters outside with the wyverns and their poisonous tail-stingers.

Aodh is felled by a wyvern trying to carry A’Kelah (using his newfound stone-strength) to safety. Aelish saves him while Gage springs to defend all three of them. Fendrys too is brought down after helping Oksana (who looks to be adept with her famous sword) to drive one away. It looks as though all is lost until Air Elementals, summoned by the monks, aid the Starhunters in killing and dispersing the wyverns.

The monks are angry with the lot of them and demand that they surrender their weapons and speak with their ‘oracle’. Oksana herself and each of the Starhunters speaks with the mysterious man with eyes of black-glass and singed robes. He talks in riddles and bids them to speak with the Watcher-in-Flames. Leonidas and Aodh have only brief interactions. Aelish and Fendrys, however, each are treated to the mad, fiery visions of the Watcher who peers into the world from a seat of chaos and destruction…

A’Kelah, who was unconscious during the recent battle, finds herself revived in front of the oracle himself. She too peers into his glass eyes, but he chides her coward’s mind for not asking the right questions and sends her away.

Oksana it seems has placated the angry Slatewind Monks—who view them all as interlopers. The Starhunters all want to talk to her, but she is eager to speak with the ones who brought her here first. The would-be queen then uses magic, as A’Kelah does, to fly to the ship in the sky that has hovered nearby all this time. As arrangements to leave are being made, the Starhunters privately share their experiences with the oracle. Aelish and Fendrys both had a vision of a bejeweled skull being unearthed in catacombs under the capital Elansory. The sight of it slays Fendrys outright.

The fantastical air-ship, known as the Swiftlight is seen to lower, while Oksana returns saying they are welcome aboard. The captain, one Perren Sparrowhawk, is a half-elf wearing a careworn doublet. He greets them all enthusiastically and introduces his crew. They all look to be people of the desert from far beyond these mountains. The Eladric cleric Elaina and two other men, Sascha and Rashid, are all dark skinned and wear strange garments from those lands. Perren’s first mate, Hoff, looks to be a legionnaire of the Mythanian Empire and has the bearing to match. It seems they too were assailed by wyverns. Two blanche knights, Royal Lancers here with Oksana and an elven magus named Jaina were all killed in that attack. Jaina was a dear friend to the crew of the Swiftlight and the mood aboard is grim.

The ship, spared though it was by an angel, is damaged from the volcano. The Starhunters are in awe of the ship and see it as a boon in their race along the vast Meridian. Perren insists his ship is not going anywhere until it is repaired however. Four days pass and they all labor to repair the ship down at the foot of the mountain, beyond the fire ravaged area, where the local woods can lend resources. Jaina and the two knights are given what Perren calls a ‘burial at sky’. Jaina’s body is committed to the Traveler in a somber elven ceremony. The two knights are also cremated, with Gan and Eladriel invoked in equal measure.

With the ship ‘cloudworthy’ again, it is agreed that Oksana’s wishes will be met first—they will journey west to Lake Strovkel, meeting with a sage there named Goriseld. Perren though does agree to take the Starhunters to Hinturnal with all due haste; he is curious to see the university there. En route, A’Kelah trades thirteen of her red dragon scales in order to read from thirteen books and scrolls from the Swiftlight’s modest library. At Lake Strovskel they meet Lady Zita Nemeth, a Volodine, and her footmen. Goriseld eyes them wearily.

EXP
Aelish 3000
A’Kelah 2700
Aodh 3000
Fendrys 3000
Leonidas 3300

View

I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.