Illuvinari

Dreams of Silver Blades Redux: The Fist of Umbrecrom
03/19 thru 04/04/5055

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Cornered in the home of the rancorous sage Lashimer, our friends find themselves allied with the odious psion against an angry githyanki deathsquad!!! But the real question remains – which side is worse?

This is a story that Umbrecrom has been telling young children on his downtime. Umbrecrom derives great pleasure from entertaining young children and knows that seeding them with entertaining accounts of their adventures at every opportunity will give the Shards (who he refers to as the Fist of Umbrecrom because it amuses him to give the impression that he leads them) a measure of notoriety years down the road.

A tale of the Fist of Umbrecrom

(Umbrecrom mispronounces the name Carnen in this tale with a K sound instead of the proper S sound so as to make a play on words and because having a generation of children mispronounce the name amuses him.)

In the year 5005, Yestamir Carnen, who was a distant nephew to the ruling Carnens of Fennas Ear, was called upon by the Elven War Council. It was the Warlord Celethor Carnen himself who saw fit to call upon Yestamir, who had discovered some historical information that might be of use in the dawning Elven Warrage.

What is warrage you ask? Why warrage is like carnage, only done with war instead of being done with Carnens as is the tradition amongst the Elves. That it was, in fact, a Carnen that was interested in warrage shows how close the apple falls to the tree. As it would happen Celethor had assembled a mighty band of adventurers to attend and safeguard the good Yestamir in his task of finding more information to unlock the secrets of what he had earlier discovered. Upon the recommendation of a Bronze Dragon- That’s right! A Bronze Dragon whom Celethor had reason to both know and trust- upon the good recommendation of this most ancient and respected of creatures, Celethor had chosen a curious little Gnome- for all Gnomes are little, but there is little curious about that- this Gnome, a Master Quingle Gemshadow, was a Sorcerer of great renown- both for the dazzling array of arcane magics at his command and for his amazing companion. Quingle Gemshadow had befriended a baby Copper Dragon Wyrmling, who we’ll call Mali. That Quingle would chaperone the rearing of a Dragon marked him as someone deserving of great respect and not just a little fear! A Dragon! Can you imagine? The Bronze Dragon, to be sure no small babe such as Mali was, but a full grown adult, who, when speaking, should at least be listened to, if not agreed with- The Bronze had also offered one other to accompany the Lord Yestamir upon his journey. A Grey Elf by the name of Pr’Gillis, who was in the habit of dressing in silks. This one was a mystery, and more than that I cannot say for such are the ways of mysteries! Now as it would turn out, when Yestamir had arrived from his far off home of Amcarofarne he had brought with him a delegation of his own people, although none were as himself versed in the ways of the mind magics. There were other Elves, maybe their hair wasn’t as blue as his or there skin not so pale but you should understand they were Elves just the same, as not all Elves, I’m told, have blue hair. It’s true so I’m told! One of these Elves that had accompanied his journey from Amcarofarne was a Druid who we shall call Nique. You are of course familiar with the magical nature of the Druids and their connection to Nature. Ever-nurturing, and shepherding the growth of all things within the bounds of nature, yet capable to command the storms overhead, and the very rock beneath your feet should they have cause to, which is why we have cause to be grateful that Nique was very interested in helping Yestamir on his task. Nique had with her a rather formidable companion, something like Quingle’s Mali, yet all together different. Nique’s companion was called Nelke. Yes, that’s a funny name, but you should know that she referred to her as such because Nelke was a Saber-Toothed Tiger, which as you may be aware is a large Tiger with two very long, dangerous teeth. You see, not like Mali at all. Were as Mali could hide in Quingle’s belt satchel, Nique could hide behind Nelke. And being a tiger, well, all tigers are dangerous creatures I assure you! Finally, there is myself, Umbrecrom as I am called. Yestamir being a very dear friend, I had taken it upon myself to follow Lord Yestamir from Amcarofarne. When I learned that my very good friend Yestamir was pledged to voyage to gather a piece of a puzzle, which vexed the Warlord Celethor Carnen, hardly could I not be expected to volunteer myself to lead this expedition. With five principle members: Yestamir, Quingle, Pr’Gillis, Nique, and myself, I saw that we were like the fingers of a hand- Lord Yestamir was very much the pinky because he was the first, Master Quingle, who I sometimes refer to as The Lord Arcane in deference to his mastery of the Arcanic Arts, would be my good thumb for when you make a fist to strike, it is the thumb which holds the others in place. Pr’Gillis, the mysterious Elf would be that mysterious finger next to the pinky. What’s it there for? I cannot say, but it is there and is very important, for without it we would only count to four on one hand, and that would be very odd, would it not? But it is there and we don’t question it, we accept it and are glad it is there! Nique was like the pointing finger, capable in guidance and giving direction. As for myself, well, I am large so it might be fitting that I am the largest finger. The finger around which all others gather themselves, two to the left and two to the right as if a commander flanked by his guard. And this is why I refer to our group as the Fist of Umbrecrom. It was the Warlord himself that requested I take my band to a far off place in search of an unknown person that was called Lashimer. We should have known then at that moment, with a name like Lashimer, a name that sounded very much like the lash of a whip, both cruel and painful, that we would be sorely tested. We were off guard because he was rumored to be a sage of some repute- a man of learning, but he was like no kindly teacher, no benevolent instructor as we would soon enough find out. The good Lord Kelroth Carnen, younger brother to the Warlord was so kind as to allow his elder brother the use of a boat of a very fast speed for missions of the state which the Warlord had interest to complete with all haste, and it was upon this very fine boat that I took the Fist of Umbrecrom upon its very first voyage. Now if you ever have opportunity to ride a boat upon the water, be aware that it could be very unsettling if you are not accustomed to the floor you stand upon moving up and down upon the waves. Sometimes if you are not accustomed to this movement, it will make you sick. Alas, the youngest of our band, the babe Mali was afflicted as such. There! Do you see the stain upon my boot? That marks his favorite spot on which to be sick, for he became ill and relieved himself of a rat he had eaten earlier when he was below deck and less aware of the boat’s motion. Being a baby, being a Dragon, being the friend of Master Quingle, and most importantly just being a delight to be around, I could hardly be upset. In truth, I hoped that he would feel better, and was happy to give him the comfort of allowing him to be sick upon my boot! You see, when you lead others, you must become accustomed to give comfort in whatever way you can, so that having been given comfort by you, those you lead will better understand why you lead. And who among you can say that that you’ve had a Dragon get sick on you? Hmmm? I image very few living creatures can boast this experience! We then arrived at the location where we had to start searching for the precise location of the home of Lashimer. Relieved at being off the boat, Mali offered to fly out and check the nearby isles, but having been unwell during the voyage, he was not as up to the task as he would have liked to have been, and after a brief time he returned more exhausted from flying against the inclement weather than he could have anticipated. The weather continued in its inclemency. It was the mysterious Pr’Gillis who discovered the location of Lashimer’s home, but being mysterious, it was a village on the shore he was looking for, and when he realized he was lost, and didn’t know how to get back to the boat, it was, in fact, the boat that he was looking for when he spotted the small shack on one of the tiny islands out at sea. I told you he was mysterious! The boat then sailed toward the Island, and the Fist finished the journey by taking out a small boat to the small island. The island, no larger than several hundred feet in any direction is where they discovered a small wood shack and a path that led to the islands peak. Pr’Gillis and Nique and her feline Nelke ventured up the path to investigate, despite the terrible winds that made walking along the rock very dangerous. The others, Quingle, Yestamir and myself investigated the hut. Yestamir, as any civilized person would do when visiting someone’s home, knocked at the door, which brought no answer. After a short time of this something very unexpected happened. One moment there were 4 of us outside the shack, and the next, as if by some unexplainable magic we were surrounded by 6 strange and violent beings with their otherworldly weapons drawn and pouncing upon us with no warning! Lord Yestamir turned seeing he was flanked to either side by these strange beings, myself behind him also flanked and another in front of me when I turned about, and Quingle was threatened by the one in front of me and the one to my side. I strove to protect Lord Yestamir, but couldn’t deflect the attack aimed at him. We were all hurt in that initial assault, yet Quingle enacting one of his magics, flew above his attackers, where at least he was safe. I endeavored to break the weapon of one of Yestamir’s attackers, thinking without a weapon they would not be able to attack. The strange glowing blade shattered into a hundred spinning fragments as my great sword slammed into the odd weapon, but in seconds the magic that infused the blade reconstructed it back to its original form! “You must use your magics!” I commanded as another assault descended upon the Carnen and myself. Quingle began to draw upon his vast abilities and speak words of arcane might, gesturing at the creatures below him. It was very hard to discern where the greatest threat was, being surrounded as we were. Lord Yestamir, having no arcane magics which to respond with, offered his own unique abilities and spat a spray of dangerous liquid that doused two of the enemies. Quingle cast again, having defeated one of the creatures, and even Mali flew by offering a blast of dragon fire. Slowly the creatures lost their advantage and began to diminish under the might of The Lord Arcane and the Lord Yestamir, I myself even defeated one with nothing but my blade! Dragonfire and Gnome Sorcery proved too much for our attackers, though. In the end even Yestamir left the field of battle, allowing Quingle a better scope of attack. By the time our wayward Druid and Pr’Gillis returned with news of a strange cave, the rest of the Fist was surveying its victory, and praising the Good Lord Gemshadow for his arcane mastery. The shack was then searched but it was empty- a ruse possibly to keep us from discovering the cave at the top of the island. Once there, we discovered a nearly impenetrable portal in the ground. “Nique. Maybe you can learn something if you talk to the stone…” I suggested. She then began invoking the essence of the stone. Nique was able to determine that Lashimer was indeed inside, but discerned no way we might be able to open the portal. Nique, had another idea for that… She cast yet another magic and summoned an elemental creature of rock and orange-hot lava- a Thoqqua. At her command it pierced the portal several times, melting through the layers of rock, like a worm digging through the mud. The series of holes through the portal caused it to fall through to the floor some forty feet below as the elemental beast, having completed its task, disappeared back to the dimension from which it was summoned! I then tied a rope around a sufficient outcrop of stone and lower the other end into the exposed room. Nique cast a magic that shrank Nelke so that she could be carried down as it was too far for her to jump. We descend into a room that had several halls leading out of it, one in each direction. We found other rooms, a bedroom, a study, a workroom, and one holding a 10’ tall man-shaped stone made out of red crystal. Once we descended into the cellar below the study, Lashimer discovers that his home had unwelcome guests! We’d invaded his home without his permission, and he was quite upset about it! He entered his study screaming at us- we broke his door, and we invaded his home! This is true, we did break into his home, but we were concerned for him- we were attacked just outside his home and thought more of the monster that attacked us might try to get him, or may had already gotten him. I spoke with Lashimer. He had not been aware of what had gone on outside, and as it turned out was grateful for our presence, as invading monsters were not entirely unheard of on the island. Lord Yestamir then spoke to him dealing more directly with the reason we traveled all this way. They retired into Lashimer’s study to discuss that in more detail and the rest of us did not need to hear it so we remained in a corridor. And just then from the main room, 6 more of the strange creatures open the door to the corridor. Strange yellow creature holding swords that appeared from nowhere! They bleated their strange language at us as two swung their swords at the strange Elf Pr’Gillis and myself who were guarding against just such an assault. Pr’Gillis occupied them by swinging his bare fists, confusing them by pretending to try to dodge past them into the room. Seeing that our curious Elf had the situation well in hand, I made my way to the door behind which Yestamir and Lashimer conversed. The sound of my fist slamming upon the door alerted them, as I called “Lord Lashimer, your home is invaded!” By now Master Quingle, who you should know was a Sorcerer had found it very useful to be well-versed in many languages and had managed to discover a language which was common to both himself and the leader of the invaders. I do not recall if it was Infernalli- the language of devils… or mayhaps a variant of Ilythid, for you see I did not understood what was said, but as I walked back to my station beside mysterious Pr’Gillis who still moved about in the ways of his discipline as to make it impossible to anticipate how one of these strange creatures with the twinkling blades of light might land a strike upon him, Master Quingle was leveling his demands at the creature. She must have understood what power he commanded as each word seemed to cause her to flinch and shrink back. She made the sounds of whatever language they spoke, and our master sorcerer made his demands known again! The sly and cunning Lashimer opened his door and began to speak to this leader in its own tongue, but without worry as the very Fist of Umbrecrom lay between the creatures and himself. Then without warning, he unleashed the cruel black power of his corrupt mind by extending his hand forward which issued a beam of some foul corruption which struck down one of the creature Pr’Gillis had earlier occupied. With that Lashimer groveled “Protect me!” as he tried to shut the large iron-bound door so that he was once again inside with Yestamir. The blue-haired Elf had other ideas and prevented the door from closing. By commanding him to “Stop!” while everyone looked on. There was disapproval in his eyes, yet he anticipated there was more the sage could offer for our cause, which had brought us to this far off land. “You must protect me if I am to be of any further service to you…” the vile Lashimer pleaded. Once more Quingle spoke to the leader. In moments they were conversing in the language of the Dragons and this was a language Yestamir understood. The leader then offered that she recognized that she had no grudge against able members of the Fist of Umbrecrom, but only with Lashimer, for what he’d done to her guard and other matters, which caused her to track him to his home. We agreed that it was a just vendetta. Little did anyone realize that Lashimer himself understood enough of the language so that he understood his impending doom. A desperate “Noooooooo!” escaped his lips, and he marshalled his dire mental energies for another attack. It was not as powerful as the attack on the creature moments before, but had a disabling effect that momentarily confounded those before him. That provided him the opportunity to affect his escape! Not knowing where he went to, Pr’Gillis offered to lead the creature in command to the basement, where he had reason to believe that the object of their mission resided. Nique, myself and Yestamir went into the study which we had reason to believe held information that would help us with the reason for our visit. Master Quingle, still under the effects of his magics that allowed him the gift of flight, hovered in the main room like a vengeful dragonfly, ready to counter the vile assault of the villainous Lashimer. In the workroom the other soldier creatures- for I believe them to have been a military band, had found a creature of such evil, and sinister disgust that I have not the words to even describe it. Sadly these soldier creatures that fought its inevitable advance would not prevail. As I gathered the information that would prove to be the only answer to our long journey’s quest, our Lord Carnen offered his assistance to the soldiers that fought the evil monstrosity with an energy manifestation that when it struck had proven to be the most effective attack. Master Quingle turned his attention to the 10’ tall red crystalline golem that Lashimer had then led back into the room from yet another entrance. “Get them!” Lashimer screamed, spittle flying from his mouth. Immediately our Sorcerer began to cast a spell which caused both Lashimer and his stone construct to be held in place by thick roots which erupted from the floor. Although the golem easily broke free, Lashimer was still bound tight, so he called to his construct to assist him. There was issued from the red crystalline monolith an effect that negated the magic Master Quingle had so expertly orchestrated, and also caused Quingle’s magic flight to be disrupted so that he fell to the floor within reach of the giant golem. Before Lashimer could escape yet again, Master Quingle casts upon him once more causing his eyes to be clouded with magical darkness! Although we were coming to understand the evil that was Lashimer, we still resisted attacking with the full fury of our might. I then entered and confronted the red crystal creature with a vial of remarkable Stone-breaker’s acid, hurling it at the rocky creature which proved to be a devastating assault that continued to eat away at its crystalline body for some time after it was struck. It then turned upon me with a crushing blow! Nique behind me had started casting her healing spells to immediately counter the wounds the golem had bestowed upon me. “Heal me of these devastating wounds Nique!” I asked of the powerful Druid. She then lay her enchanted hands upon me and the life-giving nature of her magics filled my being restoring my health and vigor! The mysterious Pr’Gillis, who had mysteriously returned from the basement without the leader of these strange yellow creatures, managed to position himself on the other side of the golem, and, I tell you I know not how, releases a electrical blast so obliterating that it shattered through the stone of the construct’s torso, ending forever its rampage! Pr’Gillis who was very concerned with my good health inquired if I was all right after having traded blows with the giant stone construct. It was when I turned to him to reply, that I witnessed the monster emerging from the other room reach out to strike our mysterious Elf in the back. Struck to the ground, Pr’Gillis scrambled behind me so that I might strike at the creature if it reached for him again, and then we cautiously backed away into a corner near the door, for such was the nature of this monster that we were not eager to approach it closely. It was through that doorway which we stood near, that Master Quingle strode, speaking words of arcane command, gesturing his spell to engulf the monster. The light that erupted was too bright to look directly into, and you know what that did to the monster! It was defeated! Finally, the Fist could gather together to assess their mission. Yestamir spoke, “I can sense that Lashimer has departed. He is no longer here. Otherwise I could sense his cowardice and evil!” “If he is gone then we leave this cursed place.” I told my friends. Quingle, Pr’Gillis, Nique, and Yestamir nodded in agreement. I then walked over to the shattered remains of the ruby construct and retrieved a piece of it. This right here on this chain came from its very head! "Let us remember this fine mission and our success by always carrying with us a piece of this red crystal. By this Umbrecrom’s Fist shall be known as ‘The Shards’! “Here, here!” said Yestamir first to agree. “This would be wise.” agreed Nique. “Aye! We’ll be called the Shards!” Master Gemshadow announced in a voice with an accent that can only be called magic! Pr’Gillis gathered the shards and passed them out, saying nothing, but doing so with a smile. And so ends the first adventure of the Fist of Umbrecrom!
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Dreams of Silver Blades: A Voice in the Dark
03/04 thru 03/19/5055

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A group is dispatched by the War Council of the Elves to seek the mysterious sage known as Lashimer, but others may also seek what knowledge the reclusive scholar holds.

“The Dreams of Silver Blades”
(or: “The Birth of the Body of Shards”)

On Gwaeron 4, 5005, Yestamir Carnen, the Grey Elf Psion Telepath, answers a call to a meeting by the War Council of the Elves. There he meets Umbrecrom Iron Rage, a Stonechild Barbarian, and Nique Helin, a Grey Elf Druid, who is accompanied by a large saber toothed feline she calls Nelke. The War Council also introduces Pr’Gillis, a half Grey Elf/half Bronze dragon Monk, and Quingle Gemshadow, a Gnome Sorcerer who has a knack, so he says, for very plausible imitations of many “ordinary” spells. Quingle is also accompanied by Malachitrix, a small Copper Dragon Wyrmling. The Warlord adds that Pr’Gillis and Quingle come highly recommended. The group is quickly given their assignment: a tapestry found by Yestamir on an earlier adventure depicts a possible weapon (extra-planar) that could be important in the upcoming war, but the council needs more information. The task of the newly formed band of friends is to locate the island home of Lashimer the Sage, a Psion, and find out what he may know about the item in the tapestry. They are provided with 2000 gp worth of emeralds to be use in the negotiations with the Sage. Additionally, Lady Eqximiye Carlack has graciously had several healing scrolls, potions and a wand provided to the group, for the use in emergencies. They also have The Blackbird, Prince Kelroth Carnen’s ship, placed at their disposal.

The trip to the general location of Lashimer’s island takes 12 days, and is uneventful aside from worsening weather. All fair well on the voyage, with the exception of Malachitrix, who gets seasick (thank Garl Glittergold for the Clean aspect of the Prestidigitation spell); although he still wins the hearts of the crew – probably due to his plucky spirit, and knack for catching rats on the ship.

After some searching of the islands in the area where he is supposed to make his home, a light is spotted on the shore of a small island, and on the 19th of Gwaeron the group heads ashore to Lashimer’s island. The landing party consists of the intrepid adventurers, plus the 1st Mate of the Blackbird to serve as an interpreter of Southern Common, if necessary. The weather is very bad, with winds in excess of 45 mph. On the shore of the island the group finds a small shack, and since the party is on a somewhat diplomatic mission, a polite approach is tried first and Yestamir knocks on the door, calling for Lord Lashimer over the sound of the wind.

While waiting for a response, Pr’Gillis and Nique notice a path leading from the beach up the side of the mountain, and leave to investigate. Alas, the polite approach does not work, for no one answers. Instead, the remaining group is suddenly surrounded by 6 very nasty Githyanki, who simply appear in their midst, surprising them completely. In the initial wave of attacks from the newly arrived foes, the unfortunate 1st Mate is killed instantly, and Umbrecrom, Yestamir and Quingle take heavy damage. Battle ensues, and all Githyanki are eventually dispatched, but as mopping up is completed, the last Githyanki, who is only mostly dead, warns Quingle to “return the General’s sword,” then finally expires. It is known that their’s is a race that prizes certain possessions very highly, and to take one from them incurs their wrath until it is returned (and probably for a little while thereafter, as well).

The body of the unfortunate sailor is put in the boat and covered, for return and a Raise Dead later. The shack is then searched, only to reveal another body only very recently deceased, and a few items that emit magical auras. The party then realizes the true string of events: they surprised the Githyanki! They had just killed the inhabitant of the shack and were searching it themselves when the group of heroes showed up, and the only reason the adventurers didn’t hear the Githyanki was due to the noise of the wind. By this time Pr’Gillis and Nique have returned, who then lead the party back up the mountain to the cave entrance they had found.

Exploring the cave, they discover the entrance to what is obviously Lashimer’s abode, but also that it is sealed with a Psionic Gate. Using the skills of her craft, Nique is able to speak to the stone of the gate itself, and the party discovers several important pieces of information: Lashimer is indeed home, the deceased person in the shack was Arcalan, Lashimer’s assistant/pupil, and that expected guests use a special incense provided by Arcalan to open the Psionic Gate. The party searches the shack again for any traces of unburnt incense, but to no avail – none is found. In a last-ditch effort to enter the lair, Nique summons a Thoqqua, which, foul tempered as it is, burrows a series of holes in a circle, breaking through the stone and revealing an unplugged entrance to Lashimer’s home.

The group quickly decides that, based on his taste in home decor, they definitely do not like Lashimer. The main entrance room is exceedingly unpleasant, the ladder down from the entrance is made from the bones of humanoids, and the room is adorned on all 4 sides with tapestries depicting depraved scenes of rape and torture. Are the tapestries part of a defense against intrusion, or just the outlet of a sick mind, or both? In any event, Yestamir fails to stand up to their power, loses his mind, and tries to scratch his own eyes out; fortunately one of the items provided to us is a Scroll of Healing. Pr’Gillis comes into physical contact with one of them, and also begins to fall to their power, but only briefly, and he holds on to his sanity. Alas, though, the sleep-like trancing of our two heros will not be pleasant for some time to come.

The party realizes it cannot stay in this hall, as it is taking all their willpower to not look at the tapestries too closely, but the only portals appear to be doors of living skin, one in each wall. Yestamir tries several psionic effects to open them, but to no avail. During this testing period, the group begins to believe that these doors may have been made out of the skin of children. Quingle uses a Knock scroll to successfully open one of them, but as he had only one scroll, the only feasible way to get through is for Yestamir to cut through, while having a Tower of Iron Will active for protection from the psionic attacks that cutting the doors causes; each door immediately begins to slowly heal, however. With all this evidence of depravity, the kindly and upright natures of our heroes cause them to despise Lashimer even more, and many in the party want to destroy the tapestries right then and there, but Quingle points out that even though he dislikes him as much as anyone, their mission is to negotiate with Lashimer, which is not likely if they damage his home (“…any further,” Quingle adds, glancing at the plug of stone lying in the middle of the floor – but he does think a “stray” fireball during a melee combat may just do the trick).

And so the search for Lashimer begins. In one chamber, the party discovers a large red crystal statue standing inside a large circle marked on the floor. Quingle, who has a Detect Magic active, notes that the floor of the entire complex has been radiating a faint abjuration, but not within this circle. Another chamber is obviously for torture, and also holds a very nasty looking creature behind a wall of force – a Caller in the Darkness (more on this later). The living quarters appear to be fairly standard, nothing appears to be out of the ordinary except a candle which is actually a psionic trap. Which leaves the library/office, containing several books – titles/subjects include “A Caller in the Darkness” (penned by Lashimer himself), some on Githyanki culture and history, “Studies on Waterbreathing and the Effects of Drowning” (and others on underwater exploration), “Flaying: The Lost Art”, and several others that are definitely not part of the “Tome of the Month” club. The library also has a stairway down to a lower watery chamber. Descending into this grotto, the party finds a small beach area giving way to a small underground pond, or possibly extension of the sea, and sees a stone case underwater at the far end that they believe would be just the right size for holding a sword. However, as the group brainstorms on methods of retrieving the casket, the resident finally makes his appearance, as Lashimer enters the library from the main hall. Naturally angered, Lashimer mind blasts Quingle, stunning him for a few seconds, then he performs a sort of psionic time enhancement on himself, attacks the rest of group with an electrical energy bolt, and returns to the center of the library.

It is at this point in the adventure where Umbrecrom reveals his true nature: it appears that he is, in fact, Lord of Cajones! In a brilliant, and surprising, move, still smoking from the energy bolt delivered by the Sage, he dashes up the stairs from the grotto, races up to Lashimer, draws his sword, and…drops to his knee, laying the sword at Lashimer’s feet, and delivers a magnificent soliloquy regarding the attacking Githyanki, and apologizing for the forced entry to his home. This move on Umbrecrom’s part gets Lashimer to stop in his tracks long enough to listen to the heros, or at least not kill them outright, and gives Yestamir the chance to begin negotiations.

Once cooled off, Lashimer and Yestamir (do all psion’s names end with that sound?) begin negotiating, moving off to the living quarters, where they enter. The rest of the party has been following, but do not enter the room with the psions – Lashimer specifically excludes them. At one point, however, before Lashimer closes the door behind them, Yestamir inquires about the tapestry that is the crux of the mission, to which Lashimer responds “you mean Githyanki Astral Maps?”. It appears the Sage may have let a valuable piece of information slip out. The party, left in the corridor between the living quarters and the main entry hall, decides that now would be a good time to take care of healing. A wise choice…they are about to need it!

For as soon as they are finished, the door of skin is sliced open – from the other side – to reveal another 6 Githyanki. There are a few half hearted attempts of attacks, from both groups, but serious combat is not quite attained. Quingle and Nique pound on the door of the living quarters, to get the attention of the psions within, if for no other reason than the belief that if the Githyanki’s business is with Lashimer, then perhaps they should be addressing him, and not them. Speaking to the party in a language that apparently only Quingle can understand, the leader, a female, states that the party are the servants of Lashimer and orders the group to return the sword. Quingle, repulsed by the thought that they could even mistakenly be seen as servants of such a vile human, states that they are not his servants, they are here on business of their own, and that they do not have the sword. The leader orders the group to lay down their arms, but Quingle tells her that they have no intention of leaving themselves defenseless. At this point Lashimer emerges, addressing the female leader as Gythra, and switches to a language no member of the party understands. His actions appear very conciliatory, at first, but then he manifests a psionic power, points at one of the Githyanki underlings, and a bolt of psionic energy flies from the sage’s fingertip towards its victim, who disintegrates in a puff of smoke. Lashimer then, with a sickening air of superiority, orders the band of heroes to “deal with the Githyanki,” treating them as if they were, in fact, his servants, and returns to the living quarters, closing the door behind him.

The groups again begin to gear up for an apparently unavoidable conflict, when suddenly Yestamir opens the door to the living area, and commands everyone to stop. He then turns to Lashimer and reminds him that no one orders them around, to which the foul sage responds that “if you want my help you will.” Quingle realizes that Yestamir is a very skilled negotiator, but his skills are useless if he must work through an interpreter. So the sorcerer again addresses Gythra, suggesting that dealing with the leader of his group would be easier if they could find a common language, and asks what languages she knows. They quickly find that Draconic is a common language between the two leaders (and Quingle and Pr’Gillis, as well). In discussions with Gythra, she offers a deal that if the heroes assist the Githyanki against Lashimer and the retrieval of the sword, then they could have anything else in the compound. It should be noted that it is at this point that the adventurers begin to realize that between the books they saw in the library, Lashimer’s comment about the Githyanki Astral Maps, and what the Githyanki might be able to tell them directly, they may have everything they need to consider the mission a success, even without Lashimer’s direct input. So the deal is accepted. With that, Lashimer, who apparently understands Draconic after all, tells the party they will regret their decision, minds blasts some of the heroes, and disappears.

In the early stages of the talks, Gythra had given orders to 3 of the Githyanki, who went off towards the area of the torture room. Now, Pr’Gillis takes Gythra down to grotto to show her the stone case the group believes may hold the sword she is seeking. The remaining heroes, and the remaining Githyanki underling are in the main entry chamber, but the tapestries are inert, and the aura of abjuration that permeated the complex is gone. Yestamir and Nique attend to some additional healing, while at the same time keeping an eye on the torture chamber, where the Caller in the Darkness has been released by Lashimer, and is engaged in combat with the Githyanki underlings (although the door to the torture chamber is beginning to heal). Before the door heals completely, however, Yestamir attempts a psionic attack against the unnatural thing. Now knowing that the contents of the library are valuable for the successful completion of the mission, Umbrecrom begins collecting up the books. This group, however, soon has other problems to deal with, and are drawn back to the main chamber, as Lashimer enters with the large crystalline statue the party found earlier, except it is now an active construct. Quingle attempts a shadow illusion mimic of Evard’s Black Tentacles, which succeeds in grasping Lashimer, but the crystalline creature breaks through it easily. A strong pulse from the construct dispels all of Quingle’s active magics, and Lashimer is freed. Quingle successfully hits him with a Blindness spell, but the evil psion is still able to flee, and the crystal creature does some serious damage to the Gnome. Umbrecrom begins hand to hand combat, with some assistance from the sorcerer (who is attempting every spell he can think of to return the damage he has taken), and from Nique (who heals the Stone Child as quickly as he takes damage). At the same time this has been going on, Pr’Gillis and Gythra make an attempt to retrieve the stone casket believed to hold her sword, but they soon discover there are other guardians of the treasure. Gythra is killed in the ensuing melee, but due to his speed, the monk escapes their clutches easily. Pr’Gillis makes it back up to the main chamber in no time, and in a stunning display of his draconic parentage, blasts the crystalline creature with a breath weapon, destroying it. Yestamir goes to the top of the stairs, to engage Pr’Gillis’ pursuers and hold them back on the stairs. Since he does not enter the doorway, though, this gives Quingle (who is in range of the library as well) the opportunity to utilize another shadow illusion, this time creating a Wall of Chains to block the entrance to the grotto with hopes of sealing the guardians below. Nique adds to the barrier by using a Control Winds to help make sure they’re kept down there. Meanwhile, there is no time for celebrating the destruction of the crystalline construct, for the Caller in the Darkness, which has been released by Lashimer, and having dealt with the unfortunate Githyanki underlings, enters the main chamber by simply passing through the walls (although the skin doors it passes through shrivel and die – and do not heal). Umbrecrom and Pr’Gillis begin to deal with the foul thing, an undead incorporeal creature that sucks the life force from its victims. Nique, realizing that a heal that helps her friends would likewise harm the evil thing, attempts to use the Mass Cure Critical scroll, but – alas – the attempt to read it fails, the spell does not activate, and the scroll is lost. Quingle uses a well placed fireball to engulf both the Caller, as well as a few of the depraved tapestries, and all with in the blast radius, especially the Caller, are destroyed in the conflagration. The remaining tapestry is shredded by Pr’Gillis.

It appears the band of heroes has mostly succeeded – they have the information they came to get, both of Lashimer’s “pets” are destroyed, but Lashimer, though blind, has escaped. The party finds where the vile sage’s footsteps enter the circle in the room originally containing the crystalline construct and then disappear, and believe he may have psionically teleported away when things looked bad for him. Understandably, the party wishes to leave the compound as soon as possible, but Quingle takes Yestamir back to the living quarters, primarily to retrieve the items from Arcalan and the shack, which they returned to Lashimer at the beginning of the negotiations (just after he decided not to kill us – the first time); while there, they do a quick search of the room, but find nothing more. As the band of adventurers is leaving the complex, however, each of the party retrieves a shard or two of the crystalline construct to save as mementos, and they realize this may make for a very apt name for the new band of friends: “The Body of Shards” (it has a nice ring to it, they think, but it may need some work…).

On returning to the Blackbird, the Captain is understandably angered about the death of the 1st Mate, and among the crew they’re suddenly not so popular anymore; although one can hardly blame them, too much. The trip home is also fairly uneventful, with one strange exception: one night Pr’Gillis, who is having troubles trancing due to his contact with the depraved tapestries, and the crew spot the wake of an object moving through the water, towards shore. As it get closer, it begins to rise out of the sea, and what comes ashore turns out to be a 200 foot tall automaton/golem, with a person standing on a parapet on it’s shoulder. It appears as though the thing were simply walking across the bottom of the ocean! The automaton continues striding inland, out of sight.

On their return to the War Council of the Elves, they are debriefed, including Pr’Gillis’ account of the ocean walking automaton. The Warlord is very pleased with the performance of the new Body of Shards, and will further reward each of them with a +1 enhancement to any one magic item that each one owns. They arrange for a Raise Dead on the 1st Mate, and also, as a sincere apology, give him one of the Rings of Protection from their treasure.

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Ashes, Ashes, We All Fall Down
03/06 thru 03/14/5055

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Wherein Sir Thangil Elendu and The Speaker of the Eldar are called upon to help investigate a strange murder in Fennas Ëar.

Ashes, Ashes, We All Fall Down: A Play in Three Acts

Act 1, Scene 1: Fennas Ëar. A room in the Royal Palace, Eqximiye’s public offices. A high elven male is being escorted out by a supercilious grey elf. EQXIMIYE sits at a desk making notes on a sheet of parchment.

Enter THANGIL, bursting past the aide into the office.

THANGIL: Eqximiye, are you busy?

Eqximiye looks pointedly at the piles of papers on her desk, and the line of people in the foyer of the offices waiting to see her.

EQXIMIYE: Not at all. What can I do for you?

THANGIL: I’ve come across something I think you’ll be interested in.

EQXMIYE: Oh really?

THANGIL: My friend Austenial …you know Austenial don’t you? No? Well, anyway, he’s an Inspector with the City Watch. He found a body. No-one can identify it, and he asked for my help. I thought you might want to look at it.

EQXIMIYE: It almost has to be more interesting than hiring staff for my house. Lead on and we will view this body.

Exit EQXIMIYE and THANGIL.

Act 1, Scene 2: Fennas Ëar. A guard station somewhere in the city. Officials bustle through the offices, looking important. A tired looking high elf sits at a desk, staring blankly at the wall.

Enter EQXIMIYE and THANGIL.

AUSTENIAL: leaps to his feet Thangil, you’ve returned! Did you find someone willing to help us? recognizes Eqximiye, loses train of thought

THANGIL: Eqximiye, this is my good friend Inspector Austenial Silverspear. Austenial, this is Lady Eqximiye Carlack. She has agreed to use her abilities and powers to assist your investigation.

AUSTENIAL: Lady, I am most indebted to you for any help you can give. This is truly a mystery.

EQXIMIYE: What exactly happened?
AUSTENIAL: That’s just it. No-one knows. Early this morning, a patrol on the east end of the Birch Quarter found a body in the street. No-one knows who he is or what he was doing here. The body is…disturbing.

EQXIMIYE: Birch Quarter? I know where that is. That’s just a few blocks from my uncle’s…my house.

AUSTENIAL: Yes, a very busy intersection. Would you be willing to view the remains? looking Eqximiye over, obviously concerned about her youth

EQXIMIYE: Of course.

AUSTENIAL gestures and THANGIL and EQXIMIYE precede him through a door and down a flight of stairs.


Act 2, Scene 1: Fennas Ëar. A guard station somewhere in the city. A body lies on a table at the end of the room, covered in a shroud.

Enter AUSTENIAL, THANGIL and EQXIMIYE.

AUSTENIAL: He is there, as you see. He stands back, waiting to see what Eqximiye will do.

EQXIMIYE walks to the table, extends a hand and pulls the sheet off of the body. THANGIL stands beside her, also examining the corpse.

EQXIMIYE: I know this man!

THANGIL and AUSTENIAL: You do? in unison

EQXIMIYE: As do you! to Thangil

THANGIL: Do I? peering at the body

AUSTENIAL: How can you recognize him?

EQXIMIYE: The body may be black and dessicated, but it is not charred. Look here. pointing to three lines tattooed on the man’s cheek, still visible He is of The Circle. Now do you know him, Thangil?

THANGIL: By the gods! It’s Runebender!

AUSTENIAL: Who is Runebender?

EQXIMIYE: Runebender is, or was, the member of The Circle of Laroosh. He was one of the Syndec’s aides, who met with Prince Kelroth, Thangil and myself during our visit many months ago. I wonder what he was doing here.

THANGIL: Coming to see you! He must have been…he was near your home after all.

EQXIMIYE: frowning I think you must be right. But how did he die? And who killed him?

AUSTENIAL: That’s what I’d like to know!

EQXIMIYE: Very well. Stand back. she begins making arcane gestures and murmuring syllables that burn the air and slip through the mind like oily tendrils

EQXIMIYE casts Analyze Dweomer and spends some time studying the corpse.

EQXIMIYE: Well Inspector, are you ready to take notes?

AUSTENIAL: I am.

THANGIL: I am as well.

EQXIMIYE: This man was called Runebender in life. He has three tattoos on his cheek identifying him as a member of The Circle. He has another enchanted tattoo above his eye and two more in other areas of his body. These provide various protections, all of which obviously failed him. He has a magical glass eye, a wand belt, his wizard’s robes and a leather satchel holding poisoned throwing needles.

AUSTENIAL: We already knew all that! impatiently We didn’t need magic to see those things, and we could’ve guessed about the protections.

EQXIMIYE: smiling without humor If you place the eye in your eye socket, it grants you the following abilities: see invisibility, detect poison, detect thoughts and detect magic. He was wearing bracers and two rings. Where are they?

AUSTENIAL: Wha? He wasn’t wearing them when we found him. I doubt we’ll see them again. Stolen I’m sure.

EQXIMIYE: I see faint wisps of necromancy… inspects the body more closely a ritual did this to him, one requiring extremely lengthy preparation, but when it happened it happened fast. recoiling suddenly with evident revulsion They destroyed his soul!

AUSTENIAL: gagging in horror They destroyed his soul? This is vile magic indeed!

THANGIL: Who are they?

EQXIMIYE: I would guess The Circle killed him, but I can’t be sure. We’ll need a priest for this. turns to AUSTENIAL Inspector, please have this body brought to the Palace chapel.

Exit AUSTENIAL, THANGIL and EQXIMIYE.

Act 2, Scene 2: Fennas Ëar. The Palace chapel, devoted to the Seldarine, and primarily to Correllon Larethian. A body lies covered on the altar. A high elven priest, ELLINDAR GOLDTHORN, is lighting candles on the altar.

Enter AUSTENIAL, THANGIL and EQXIMIYE.

EQXIMIYE: Ellindar, is everything prepared?

ELLINDAR: Yes Lady Speaker, all is ready. Have you prepared your questions?

EQXIMIYE: I have. handing a piece of paper to the priest

ELLINDAR: Let us proceed. stepping up to the corpse, he begins casting Speak With Dead.

ELLINDAR: Were you killed in Fennas Ëar?

The corpse shudders slightly, and answers.

RUNEBENDER: Yes.

ELLINDAR: How were you killed?

RUNEBENDER: I was eaten by the center.

ELLINDAR: Why were you in Fennas Ëar?

RUNEBENDER: To betray my Lord and Master.

The corpse shudders slightly, and lies still once more.

ELLINDAR: I cannot cast that again today, but when Ariena returns, she will be able to assist you. She is due back this afternoon from the Temple of the Moon.

EQXIMIYE: Thank you Ellindar, for your help. Please ask her to send for me when she is prepared. I have a few more questions, as I think you knew.

THANGIL: What next?

EQXIMIYE: We need a witness to his death, if possible, and I need to find out if he was carrying any papers or documents.

AUSTENIAL: Good luck…let me know how that works out for you! sarcastically

EQXIMIYE: I’ll keep you informed of what I discover. bows to both men and leaves the room

AUSTENIAL: Does she really think she can find someone who’ll admit to seeing him die? If anyone did they probably are the same ones who robbed him. I figure the only reason they didn’t grab his eye is it was too disgusting to touch.

THANGIL: Or they didn’t realize he had a magical eye. And don’t be too surprised if she does manage to turn someone up. grins Adventurers make friends in low places sometimes.

AUSTENIAL: grunts Join me for a drink later?

THANGIL: Great!

Exit THANGIL and AUSTENIAL, talking in low voices.

Act 3, Scene 1: Fennas Ëar. A private room at an unspecified tavern in the Cedar Quarter. EQXMIYE is sitting alone in the room, sipping a glass of pomegranate juice.

Enter EASTWIND and WESTWIND, twin wood-elven sisters of dubious character.

EQXIMIYE: Welcome, welcome, thank you for coming.

EASTWIND: Naturally we came, we were…

WESTWIND: curious, and you know we always succumb to…

EASTWIND: curiosity.

EQXIMIYE: smiling Yesterday, a man was killed.

The sisters exchange a glance, but otherwise remain impassive.

EQXIMIYE: Some of his possessions were stolen.

EASTWIND: purses her lips So? What do you want us to do about it?

EQXIMIYE: chuckles Please don’t assume that I want the thief brought to justice. I know perfectly well who killed this man, and it wasn’t any of our resident…criminal class…However, I would pay well to speak with someone who witnessed his death, for the full description of any magical items taken and the return of any papers he may have been carrying.

WESTWIND: You don’t want the items back…just a description? You only want the papers?

EQXIMIYE: That’s right.

EASTWIND: We’ll see what we can do. We’ll be in touch.

EQXIMIYE: My thanks, ladies.

Exit EASTWIND and WESTWIND. EQXIMIYE remains for a short time and then also exits.

Act 3, Scene 1: Fennas Ëar. The Palace chapel once more. ELLINDAR and ARIENA are within, talking quietly.

Enter EQXIMIYE, THANGIL and AUSTENIAL.

ARIENA: Greetings, Lady Carlack. Greetings, Sir Elendu. bowing to AUSTENIAL Inspector. Do you have a list of questions prepared?

EQXIMIYE hands her a sheet of paper.

ARIENA: Excellent. Shall we begin? stepping up to the corpse, she begins casting Speak With Dead.

ARIENA: With whom were you planning to meet?

The corpse shudders slightly, and answers.

RUNEBENDER: The Speaker of the Eldar.

ARIENA: Who involved you in the kidnapping of the kobold from the home of Lady Carlack?

RUNEBENDER: I told her before we were not involved in that.

Eqximiye murmurs to ARIENA quickly.

ARIENA: What did you want to discuss with the Speaker of the Eldar?

RUNEBENDER: The price of freedom.

ARIENA: What did you intend to say to the Speaker of the Eldar when you met with her?

RUNEBENDER: Please help me and I’ll help you save your people.

The corpse shudders slightly, and lies still once more.

ARIENA: I hope that was helpful? Do you need a second casting?

EQXIMIYE: No, thank you, not at this time.

Exit ARIENA and ELLINDAR.

AUSTENIAL: Lady Carlack, have you had any luck in finding a witness or obtaining his stolen items?

EQXIMIYE: It’s too soon to expect that information. A watched pot never boils.

AUSTENIAL: And too many cooks spoil the soup. I feel that this is no longer a matter for the City Watch.

EQXIMIYE: I think that you are right. I’ll talk with Celethor and ask him to sign the necessary documents if you send them over to my attention. You’ll get them back today.

AUSTENIAL: You are too kind, Lady Carlack.

EQXIMIYE: Not at all. bows Excuse me gentlemen.

Exit EQXIMIYE.

THANGIL: Shall we go and get that drink while we wait for developments?

AUSTENIAL: Yes, indeed.

Exit THANGIL and AUSTENIAL.

Act 3, Scene 2: Fennas Ëar. A room in the Royal Palace, Eqximiye’s public offices. EQXIMIYE and THANGIL are sitting and talking.

EQXIMIYE: Yes, it cost me two-hundred gold pieces to get it, but I did.

THANGIL: Well?

EQXMIYE: The fellow didn’t actually see him die, but he heard him. The rogue was shadowing him, marking him and said it had to be fast and painful. Runebender just caved in. He heard the whoosh of fire and the screaming, but it didn’t last long.

THANGIL: Did you find out what items he was carrying?

EQXIMIYE: I did. He had several wands with protective spells or spells of concealment and an amulet of nondetecton. He also had potions and scrolls of various defensive and offensive magics.

THANGIL: You didn’t get anything more specific.

EQXIMIYE: No, he really didn’t want to be talking to me in the first place. I think he believed I was really going to have him arrested. Plus, I’m fairly sure he already sold the stuff.

THANGIL: What about papers?

EQXIMIYE: Well, there was a document case that was destroyed by the fire.

THANGIL: So no papers. sighs in discouragement

EQXIMIYE: Well…_grins_ I wouldn’t say that.

THANGIL: What?! Well?

EQXIMIYE: Don’t get too excited. Even with a Mending, there isn’t much left. The fellow I spoke with was happy to give the paper dust to me and this is what I have. hands a few pieces of parchment to THANGIL

THANGIL: Weird. What do you make of this one?

EQXIMIYE: It seems to be an incomplete magical formula. I’m guessing it’s a copy because there are parts of it that aren’t magical and they should be. It seems to be a large and complicated process…ritual…for spell storage and access by multiple users. I would imagine that this is what The Circle uses, and why they are so powerful. However, there isn’t enough left for us to understand how to recreate it.

THANGIL: looking at some of the other sheets What about this? It looks like plans for building something.

EQXIMIYE: That appears to be a general description of how to assemble a certain type of automaton.

THANGIL: Like those clockwork things the Syndec has?

EQXIMIYE: Hmmm. Maybe, it’s hard to tell. I think if more information had survived, it would have given us clues to its weak points.

THANGIL: How bizarre.

EQXIMIYE: Agreed.

THANGIL: What about this last page? This looks like a map of Vinya Avignon.

EQXIMIYE: Let me see. I hadn’t had a chance to look at this one yet. looks over the page Merciful Correllon! It has our current defenses, troop strength and patrol schedules. I think this has to be current…at least within the past week or so.

THANGIL: That’s not good.

EQXIMIYE : Thangil, would you mind taking a copy of all this to Celethor? He might be able to make something of it or use it in some way.

THANGIL: I’d be happy to run that errand.

EQXIMIYE: Rille, can you come in here please?

Enter RILLE.

EQXIMIYE: Please make copies of this information and provide them to Thangil as soon as possible.

RILLE: Yes, Speaker.

Exit RILLE, EQXIMIYE and THANGIL.

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Arena Day
Dale & Amy present "Arena Day"

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Think your character is ready for “Illuvinari: From the Ashes”? Here’s your chance to find out – without all those stressful consequences!! Come One, Come All, to ARENA DAY!!!

We try out 3.0 with no consequences.

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The Inevitability of Consequences
03/13/5055 thru 3/14/5055

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Y’Draesk meets a new friend and discovers some of the disadvantages of a bureaucracy.

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Illuvinari Pre-Flight
Post Hiatus Relaunch

Not an actual adventure! This is a get-together to discuss campaign & character histories, finalize character concepts and generally bullshit about where the campaign will start and where it might go.

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I Spy
game date may be incorrect

Narbeleth 28 – Event:
Increased security leads to a raid on a shipping firm in the harbor of Fenis Ear. Eleven hired thugs and lesser clerks are killed. The master spy in charge (a southern human named Vorstell Kyle) was not caught and is now hiding out in the home of a half-elven Sergent of the city guard (another of Lady Shadow’s people). Two lesser clerks are captured (one male half-elf, one female human). The half-elf does not know who he is working for, although he suspects that something is not above-board. The woman knows that the information is going to someone in Braxton. Both are willing to bargain for their freedom. Celorik wants them questioned and then executed as spys.
The raid went extremely well, so well in fact that the majority of the documents were captured intact. One of the documents is a report on Ost Lachrunyanen from Thomas Goodman. The documents were not destroyed for the same reason that Master Kyle was not captured – he had been out for a walk and returned just after the raiding party kicked in the door.

Mavou, Kelroth, Whetsar & Y’Draesk +250 exp each for cleverness.

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Pirate Attack!
game date unknown
There is literally no record of this session other than that it occurred.
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Caress of a Darkling Wind
02/25/5055

The party seeks answers and vengeance from Lucian Godswrath.

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Children of the Black Sun
02/08/5055 thru 02/24/5055

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The Party is sent to capture rogue cavaliers from Falls Gate in order to determine the significance of the “Black Sun” symbol.

Characters Involved: The Raptors

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