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Icarus’s Shadow Passes Over Pendaron Wood

Those present on this mission were as follows:

 

Wolfhold Kevralyn Soulfire, 11th Wizard of House Tumdurgul; Tarot MindFire, 1st Dark Paladin of House Tumdurgul; Rasc, Red Wizard;

 

Valley Alliance Daedalus Ebonheart, 13th Sorcerer of House Tumdurgul; Ogrenag, Druid; Sister Mary, Hospitaller;

 

White Retreat Rancor, Grey Wizard; Myrrh, White Wizard; Zephyr, Blue Wizard; Verrick, White Path Priest; Owajawar, Veteran Crusader; Woolf, Veteran Crusader.

 


At The Tangled Web

Daedalus, Tarot and I arrived at our destination, where we were greeted by Tornado, Sorcerer of the Blue School. For some reason, we had been directed to The Tangled Web (an inn of poor reputation), and Verrick had already been appointed party leader. I was informed that a member of the Dymwan Tower (complete with embodied undead) had earlier been within this building, and that the Dymwan were not suffering problems with the Shadow plague as have other Towers. Additionally, some Shadowsfall had visited the premises. The place was also overrun with Xenos constructions which perpetually sought to tidy away anything left unattended.

Two folk there present introduced themselves: Vish, Courtier to the King and Queen of the People of Air and Fire; and Andromeda, from the Daughters of Air and Water. Vish told us that he was within the 3rd tier of their court, and that the King and Queen of their respective peoples had gone to meet with “King Icarus”, who was nearby. Four assassins from House Dranath then arrived. Verrick demanded that nobody interfere with their “business”, which included slitting the throat of our Hospitaller.

Things did however improve when a fellow Wizard, an acquaintance of mine, arrived with a bottle of fine red wine. Around this time many people retired for the evening. He told us that Icarus’s Shadow had been harrying Halmaddon’s Heights for a long while, but had since moved South and was now within a day’s travel of our location – heading towards us.


Morning Activities

The next morning Tarot, Daedalus and I went to retrieve some supplies. During this time, a zombie wandered into the tavern triggering its innate defence mechanism and releasing a number of spiders. We were then visited by a number of hordelings and trolls, followed by some undead. It was left to two wizards – Myrrh and myself – to deal with a ghoul. Still, I destroyed it.

It transpired that the People and Daughters were planning to hold Court with that of “King Icarus”, and a representative of the Court of King Michel had been invited to speak. A long discussion ensued within our group: apparently there were none from the White Retreat present who would be both deemed suitably inoffensive and able to speak sensibly. As I had anticipated, this would later turn out to be ultimately irrelevant.

Outside rain began to fall, following which S's'sar of the Thessessin arrived asking us not to approach some nearby pools of water which they were using for purposes of procreation.

We departed so to attend the afore-mentioned Courtly meeting, fighting several groups of Xenos automatons upon the path, and a large bull. Later, we crossed a field to where a number of unpleasant undead (ghast, mummy, zombie warrior) were patrolling the area. Moving on, we came across several Dymwan including one who asked us if we could just delay one minute so that his master could finish preparing. Their undead ranks assailed us, but they succumbed to our strength.


Shadowsfall Interest

While our healers were meditating, three Shadowsfall approached. They said that they were curious about this Icarus and wanted the opportunity to examine him at close quarters through an amulet. This action would be regarded favourably for the Alliance, and the request was made by Adjudicator Sabre. Verrick still wears this amulet, through which the Shadowsfall are able to observe all goings-on, no matter that the amulet be physically obscured, etc.


Awaiting the Court

After battering our way past more Xenos drones, we met with two members of the Court of the People of Air and Fire, who said they would direct us to a place where we could refresh ourselves in preparation for the Court to be held later that evening. Their navigational skills left somewhat to be desired, and highlighted the excellent training given to scouts within our Alliance. We partook of a pleasant warm meal; the People of Air and Fire were most cordial but understandably did not comprehend the coarse manners of the half-orcs present in the dining area.

Prefect Balthazar of the Order of King Michel also arrived with a task for us: to capture the Assassin of Belem de Traverney, someone named Lucien de Winter.

Below is an annotated image of some sketchings drawn by the People of Air and Fire outside the building.

 


All of a sudden, the People suffered some distress and started unleashing a number of lesser firebolts upon our group. Those at the door called for me to provide the People with some assistance, for they had all collapsed in agony upon the ground. I, Daedalus and Zephyr cast some elemental magic upon the People, as they were struck by some emptiness within. It transpired that their Prince (and the Queen of the Daughters) had been slain by Icarus, and – for all but one – they succumbed to the darkness. This one guided me to where Icarus might be found, along with the tokens that represent their peoples (the two elemental groups). In contrast with his previously joyous demeanor he was now suffering from a great depression, and I believe he also died that dusk.


Icarus’s Shadow

We left the building, coming across wave after wave of Shadow People. Finally, I showed the others the field across which Icarus’s Shadow was waiting. The healers sat down to invoke, and our wizards to cast our High Magic rituals. My spells ensured that our front line could continue to stand up and strike this Icarus creature (where at All Hallows Eve all who struck thus did fall), thanks to the excellent teaching from the Grey School of Magic in Wolfhold.

Our objective was to retrieve the tribal tokens from Icarus’s possession. We did this, and also retrieved another Shadow Disk. However, Tarot was wearing the Shadow token taken earlier this year from a Shadow Apprentice, through which the Icarus creature acted to dominate his mind. While under this possession Tarot struck our Hospitaller; I powerdrained him before he could continue to cause any more harm. During this time we were surrounded by many Shadow People attacking us on all sides. It was greatly unfortunate that Icarus killed our white wizard Myrrh; I picked up his fallen body, and the party aimed to beat a hasty retreat. A couple of our number got trapped, and Woolf was cornered by Icarus and more Shadow People, finding his death.

While we attempted to round up all the Alliance members, Icarus’s Shadow pressed us further, striking Verrick many times. He managed to heal himself, and Owajawar took it upon himself to distract Icarus, allowing Verrick’s escape. Owajawar however died, a true Crusader’s death.

Moving back through the trees, we resurrected some of the fallen while trying to ascertain the location of others. Tarot was upset that we had relieved him of all his weapons, as he believed that the party (such as it was) was now greatly vulnerable. We returned to the building, where all the group had now congregated, before returning to The Tangled Web.


Enchantments of the Xenos

Whilst reading my spellbook for the first time that day, my estimable acquaintance arrived; this time we were able to offer him some of Daedalus’s fine ginger wine. Despite Verrick’s obvious desire to break him out of his rituals, he managed to cast a “nightmare” vision in conjunction with an identification upon the elementals’ tokens by Daedalus, which presented us some useful information concerning Waylan Wycan.

In this vision, a Xenos enchanter was seen in great debate with another to whom he referred as Angelo. At a guess, this enchanter might be Waylan Wycan. The debate centred around where you might locate the “power source” on a construct. Angelo seemed to be bowing to the pressures of mass production, citing also that if the power source was attached upon the outside then it was far easier to locate if it were to fall off, which thus made it easier to replace. The other argued for craftsmanship, saying that such constructs would not last a term… take an organic body: the very heart is encased within the torso. If the power source is placed within, it is easier to be repaired, and that “the important thing is that it can be rebuilt if you re-energise the power source”.

We wondered then that these “candles”, which contain much mana, might function as a power source for each of the elemental groups. As my colleague pointed out, the first of a race reborn will consider itself the first, no matter what has preceded before; the others will look up to this first. What we need do is deduce that which re-energises these elemental constructs, so that we may possess enough mana supplies to bind Icarus’s Shadow as before upon the Plane of Shadows. We have already observed that the elemental constructs will seek to enlarge their groups and thus their strength – what we must do is locate the trigger.


Traverney’s Assassin Apprehended

The next day, Zephyr teleported us a large distance across Orin Rakatha, so that we might apprehend the killer of de Traverney, whose name (as previously mentioned) was de Winter. After slaying some hordelings, due to a wholly lamentable lack of scouts on the group, we took some time to determine the correct direction in which to travel (as the location had been somewhat vague). Eventually however we came across two sentinels: one of steel and another of wood. The druid Ogrenag grew angry and said that he had scouted out a meeting taking place a distance away. We travelled there to find no such gathering; upon our return, we caught a monk fleeing towards us. Although he managed to shy off many trips and entangles, we caught him and I powerdrained him to an unconscious state. Someone then gave him a hefty blow to the head, which the Hospitaller stopped from bleeding, thus ensuring he was no longer a threat.

Returning to the sentinels, Tarot eventually managed to suggest (despite protestations from the party leader) to the magic users on the party that a rust might work upon the steel one. At which point, Daedalus and I rusted it into the ground, following which I quickly warped the wooden one.

De Winter denied all knowledge of de Traverney’s assassination; I believe he also said that he was towerless. He hid within a warded building, that only one person might enter for a duration of time. Owajawar leapt in, sounds of fighting ensued, Owajawar’s body then fell at the entrance. Another entered; after more combat they managed to grapple de Winter to the ground with the combined strength of two front-line warriors. I then cast a large spell of restraint upon de Winter, before Tarot knocked him out with a mace.

Within the building was a ward, which Daedalus ascertained would trigger a large black magic spell and evil invocation. Tarot readily volunteered to go within to obtain that which was behind the ward; invoking Lloth while Daedalus and I readied him with a large darkskin. Unfortunately an elixir was still required, but he managed to retrieve some interesting objects, including an amulet similar to that worn by Verrick from the Shadowsfall.


By my hand,

Kevralyn Soulfire
11th Wizard of House Tumdurgul
4th in line to the Throne of Annach Morannonil

 

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