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New Beginnings - by Ichabod

The Wizard’s Concilium had requested the assistance of the Valley Nation to investigate and resolve the instability in the elemental water node within their nation. Three sector lords, Lady Isabella, Lord Middleton and Lord Manypage responded by sponsoring a mission to assemble at the Plainside Waystation adjacent to the Concilium's land. 

The group consisted of:
Tornado,
Khandis,
Zephyr,
Ksndra,
Verrick,
Driedyn,
Caradac,
Slag,
Luna,
Asemir,
Baku,
Kyle,
and myself, Ichabod.

Our guide was Ginny, a librarian from the archive.
 
Earth day
Zephyr and myself travelled separately to the waystation but met with the others who had been waylaid by hordelings nearby.

After a short period of getting acquainted we were visited by Sorcerer Mariaus, Assistant Dean of the Purple College, a Green Sorcerer called Adam and an old acquaintance from the Grand Experiment, Tarquin - a blue sorcerer. Mariaus greeted us rather coolly and thanked us for coming to assist them. He said that we would be temporarily immune to the effects of the Concilium bane effect in their land. He also announced that the Colleges of Magika had split (or been expelled) from the Concilium lands. Also it transpired that they had lost practically all their green school of magic practitioners and their teaching scrolls. They were actively seeking new green sorcerers to help them re-establish themselves in this area. Indeed Tornado agreed to stay with them for several moons to provide what help he could, after the mission was complete. Tarquin hinted to Ksndra and myself that he needed to speak with us about their library archive, but later, out of prying ears.

Shortly after they left we were interrupted by a group of the forgotten. Apparently they are possessed by undead spirits and I feel very sorry for them to have been treated by Calex in this way.
 
Fire day
In the morning we began to focus more on how to accomplish our primary mission and we discussed possible causes for the green node of magic being influenced. I conjectured that perhaps the disaffected elements of the Wizard's Concilium might be to blame, but by far the most popular view was that the Elemental Prince of Water, who had been previously trapped on Orin Rakatha, was upset that we'd failed in our efforts to stop the summoning of green elementals.  Indeed, someone reminded me that it was I that originally spoke with him and carried his wishes back to our people.

During our conversations a pathfinder named Vern arrived and informed us that the nearby woods were infested with groups of green elementals and that they guarded the route to the green node. We pushed on through a number of groups that didn't pose too much trouble but did drain our available mana until we did eventually encounter a notable elemental by the name of Galaras, Lord of The Tides, who was acting as the local commander of the green elementals. He said that his Lord, Aqualander, Prince of Water, was angry with us for summoning his green elementals (therefore officially drowning my theory) but that he personally didn't agree with his Lord's policy. He said that we would not be able to affect the green node from this plane as it was being manipulated from the elemental plane of water by Prince Aqualander and he suggested that we would need to persuade the other elemental Princes to put pressure on him to stop. Further, he suggested that Tornado contact his own elemental Prince for assistance.

As it was clear we could progress no further towards the green node we took a different route back to the waystation. On the way back we encountered a group of the renegade Wizard's Concilium who were less than happy that we were helping their old colleagues and quickly attacked us after we mentioned we were working for the Assistant Dean of the Purple College. There was also a group of The Forgotten who mindlessly attacked. I thought that perhaps they were wrathful that they had been forgotten by us and that was why they attacked us on sight? Our last interruption to returning was a group of Labyrinthe of Xenos drones together with a Minotaur, clearly on a gathering mission.

At the waystation Tornado attempted to contact his elemental Prince by sending a whispering wind and we settled down for a rest and a chat. Just as we'd more or less given up on a prompt reply, a herald of the elemental Prince or Air, Aurus, appeared. Tornado led the discussion and explained our problem. The herald thought it a difficult to solve as the Princes rarely agree with each other so getting them to agree to pressurise Aqualander would be unlikely. Considering further, he mentioned that there was an entity, the Prince of All Magic who had dominion over all the Princes and dwelt on a plane where all the eight elemental planes touched, called the Conflux plane. He would be able to influence Aqualander into stopping his attacks upon The Valley people. When asked how we might travel to this plane he was unsure but said that we would need to find a Planar Codex. A kind of directory of planar travel compiled by those who had travelled extensively. They were incredibly rare but there was one traveller who teleported around Orin Rakatha daily, who had one. The herald could arranged for the Sylphs to redirect his teleport to our vicinity if we wished.  We agreed that this would be a good plan but it prompted a moral discussion about what lengths we might go to procure the codex if this traveller refused to let us have/borrow the codex. Needless to say that if he refused I wasn't inclined to kill him to get it and some of the party broadly agreed and we decided to adopt a wait and see approach.

The herald also gave a few tidbits of information about the other elemental Princes.
  • Prince Ignius of the elemental plane of fire wanted all fire magic to be banned.
  • The elemental Prince of Darkness is a she but her name is not spoken outside her realm.
  • When Tornado was the victim of the failed ritual that converted him to an elemental form, he actually embodied part of a Sylph named Hurricanos, Lord of the Raging Winds, and if Tornado wished he might petition Lord Auras to take up that title.
After the herald had departed we were rudely accosted by a group of Hordelings and a mist goblin.

Once the Hordelings were dispatched Sorcerer's Adam and Tarqin of the Wizard's Concilium returned to check up on progress. They were happy with what we reported and we tentatively agreed with them that we could all share the knowledge in the Codex if it was obtained.

There were then more Hordelings. I wondered if the were trying to make a point that there was something else that we (as a nation) should be concentrating on - like dealing with the mist gate issues.

We, or rather I, had a visit from a scout name Roland Cortazza, purporting to be from my brother on Hayet Galaya where he is, apparently, a commander of an Imperial Auxiliary unit. He quizzed me on my past to verify my claim to be who I am and he was generally suspicious - as scouts are want to be I suppose. He suggested that my brother come to Orin Rakatha but also that he should bring his unit with him. This leads me to a quandary where I would very much like to be re-united with him but do not wish to invite Imperial troops back to Orin Rakatha after the pain they caused our people on Murandir. I will give him a message to take back once I have considered the matter.

A while afterwards we were visited by the Knight of our Dark Lady, Jacque de Noir, who in recent events had come to ask for the Dark Pharaoh/Dreadlord to be moved to the Central Isle (or their own nation, I believe), but had been rebuffed. He did not wish to leave empty handed, so to speak, so he wished to challenge us to a combat. Verrick took up his request and after a lengthy fight, Verrick bested him.  The rest of us were left to hold off another knight and his retinue while the combat ensued. In this combat we were joined by Slag, but unfortunately he was isolated from our group and fared badly in the fight. He more than made up for that fight later on however.

The day was waning but we were far from finished as one of our allied pathfinders arrived breathless to announce that he and his comrades had been attacked by Saldorians while they were doing a perimeter check and only he had escaped. Rather than slaying his friends, they had been taken prisoner. We immediately made ready to mount a rescue.

Setting off in the direction given, we fought our way through several waves of Saldorians and, peculiarly, goblins and other non-humans who were working with them. I believe the body of one of our half-orc scouts was retrieved from one of these groups. We finally pushed through to a commander with a healer and a strong force that was holding two of our scouts. The Saldorian commander was defeated and a half-orc named Arthur and an elf named Alarion were rescued. They told of a man in white who spoke to them and had a mesmerising stare that seemed to melt their brain. There was at least one other captive who was not with this group but it was too late to pursue the Saldorians further that day.

Steel day

The morning began with reinforcements arriving, in the form of Caradac. Shortly afterward we were attacked again by The Forgotten.

A Pathfinder named Ralphin arrived with the details our scouts had gleaned of the Saldorian forces disposition.   Several groups were arrayed in the local woodland but many defenders were being lured away by a diversionary force of scouts so that we might strike at the area where the figure in white was expected to be with our captive. Our first encounter wasn't to be a fight but a warning from a Saldorian named Vendyl Sarakasha who advised us that we should turn back and abandon our scout who had been enlightened. Vendyl's bodyguards were two trolls. We were not to be dissuaded however.

We fought through a couple of waves of Saldorians until we reached a stronger group that contained two monks. The monks symbols were as follows: A red tabard with a gold disc. Over the disc was a white arrow pointing up and inside the arrow a black sword, point downwards.

After one further group of Saldorian guards with one wizard hiding and casting from a small hut, we met with the final group of Saldorians, again with the same monks. We retrieved our captive scout but the mysterious man in white had apparently already departed. We returned with our comrade to the waystation who seemed to regret being rescued and was convinced that he wanted to be with the Saldorians. Over time, apparently, the effect faded away though.

After a short recuperation a figure in blue, carrying a case, appeared a short way from us. Myself, Ksndra and Zephyr approached him in as none aggressive way as possible. He eyed us suspiciously, opened his case and withdrew a book. From the book he read words of power in a language I did not recognise and suddenly a hoard of Morgothian Uruks appeared before us! I threw them back with a thunderclap and we retreated to the safety of the rest of the party. There were very tough to put down.

After the combat we tried to speak with him again but he assumed we meant to take his Codex and summoned a horde of undead to assail us. While the party dealt with the undead I tried to calm his fear but he was most unreasonable about the Codex and even tried to attack me when I revealed a little knowledge of the Mystic Gate that we might bargain with him to help him leave Orin Rakatha. He did reveal that his name was Chineka Tanora and he was from a place called Chitinateka.

After that he had retreated off some distance into a small copse and we determined that we would need to catch him by surprise so while we milled about, trying to ignore him, Tornado cast a teleport to move a strike squad over to neutralise him. Before I and the rest of the group could join them however, the sorcerer had summoned a large force of elementals which had to be dealt with.

Finally, the sorcerer was laid low and the box and book became ours, or rather Ksndra's as she seemed to not to want to release it.

Before we could return to the waystation we were attacked and in the confusion, almost overrun, by a strong force of Shadowsfall who claimed to be working on contract to acquire the Codex. Apparently the appearance of the book had sent mana shock waves across the land, notifying those who could interpret them, that an object of great power had arrived. I later received a whispering wind from Lord Manypage that he and Lord Middleton wanted to know was happening and that they were on their way and we should hold until they came.

The most determined to retrieve that codex for themselves where the Labyrinth of Xenox who sent several waves of drones finally backed up by a high enchanter but we managed to hold on and drive them off despite numerous frostbitten left legs.

As a group we determined to separate Ksndra from the book so we might identify it, so I was chosen to hold it and do the identify as I was considered the easiest to deal with if it possessed me. Once identified, the Codex revealed itself to be essentially a history of all the planar travel it had experienced and could be used to travel to many different places. Unfortunately it did influence me and to such an extent that I could not bear to be parted from it. Once the box was identified however, it was discovered to have a containing enchantment that made carrying the book safe but the box was broken and needed spells of each of the eight colours to fix it. Once this was done the influence on myself and Ksndra faded away. It was a horrid experience to be so mistrusted by the group while so affected and I hope never to be so again.

We were visited by two Darkholme members, both Drow from House Drannath, Zalphin Nightspell, 2nd Sorcerer and Ranarin, 5th High Priest, both of whom announced their candidacy for the positions of Barons of Darkholme, presumably vacant now that The Darkbringer has moved the Black School and Kiara is busy in the Temple of the Four Winds.

The two Sorcerers, Adam and Tarquin, from the Wizard's Concilium arrived, keen to relieve us of the Codex and keep it safe in their Archive.

Lord Middleton and Lord Manypage arrived and they were somewhat surprised to hear what we had recovered and both thought they could provide the best home for it. Lord Middleton desired it to be kept in Ether Town where all might be allowed access to study it whereas Lord Manypage wished it added to the Archive restricted section, not to deny access to it but where there are already the means and facility to contain and control its less desirable effects. I'm glad to say that sanity prevailed and the group decided to allow the Codex to be kept in the Library Archive.

After that Lord Manypage announced that I would receive the rank of Guardian of the Archive, a position that came with a not insignificant duty.

Tornado announced that he would take up the offer the Wizard's Concilium and spend a few months helping to teach green magic in their nation and that while doing so I would speak his mind in the council of Eminent Sorcerers led by Lord Middleton.
 
Ichabod,
Gaurdian of the Archive.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 May 2015 22:00
 

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