The Tribes hold a war council featuring their entire leadership
Chieftan Ignosi (Leader)
General TSIR (Special Operations Commander)
General Tallulla (Military Commander)
Colonel Gentry Lincoln (Fort Crab Commander)
Colonel Remus Balk (Ignos Defense Commander)
Colonel Hatem Atel (Neria Defense Commander)
Major Iain Lytel (Scout Commander)
Major Donovan (Forward Commander)
O’ro K’ae (Drow Leader)
No’ro K’ae (Drow Military Commander)
The general consensus is that pushing their troops into another engagement immediately could be disastrous, and that they should fortify at Neria and Ignos for the near future, especially as their ally, General Mille Venus had been recalled from the Hawthorne- Argosy border and back to Rein for her actions at Fort Gerrou.
Well aware that the Dark Roads can only do so much to make up for the overwhelming strength that the Argosians could field, the Tribes made plans to seek an alliance with the now displaced Aldurans. Rumours suggested that Rephaim Lavezzi and Arda Movale, the Alduran leaders, were hiding in Arcania while they discussed protection by the Merchants, and that the party should head there as soon as Djembe’s boat was made.
Additionally, with Donovan’s mine now regularly mined, but without anyone to fashion the ore into equipment, it fell to the party to seek out a smithing guild in Arcania.
As an added benefit, it was suggested that the party could scout out the Argosian fishing village near their border where a Church steel shipment was supposed to arrive.
Ignosi presents Djembe with his boat, and the party set sail for the port town of [[Helenia.
Djembe’s skills made quick work of the trip and they arrived in Helenia without a hitch, and set off for Arcania.
Upon arriving, the party decided to split up to achieve their goals. Santa went to meet with his old boss, Elizabeth Arnesti, to see if she had any contacts, and Djembe headed to his old merchant guild, the Brook and Co. Donovan set off to speak with his mother about recruiting her into the tribes as a blacksmith, Soro sunk into the underbelly of Arcania to look for information, while Kris and Pheezz traveled the town performing for children.
Arnesti was able to tell Santa of two mercenaries formerly employed by the Aldurans, but both were on protection details that had taken them out of Arcania.
Mr. Goldhand Brook was on a mission, but his second in command Herdr Shaftcraft met with Djembe. Djembe offered tell of scuttled ships and where the Brook and Co. might find them in the near future, and that he hoped they might return the favour somehow in the future.
Soro’s meetings proved troublesome, but he was eventually able to locate some Aldurans, but they were not keen on his advances, and rebuffed them. As Soro left, he found a note in his pocket listing a room number at an inn. Unsure of where it came from, he thought it best to meet with his comrades before acting on it.
Donovan had a lovely catching up with his mother, and was excited to hear she had become a reputable member within the Hammer of Hope smithing guild, led by Gren Bosman and his brother Ivan, who she agreed to set up a meeting with the following day.
Back at the Putrid Heron, the team discussed their findings and options when a knock at the door startled them. A man named Linus waltzed in and after some coyly suggested they follow him.
He led them to a back room at the Sundered Shield, where Rephaim Lavezzi and Arda Movale met with the party. While no doubt interested in their offer of allegiance, Rephaim required a test of something-or-other, trust, I imagine. Linus agreed to escort them to the Temple of Savant where they would retrieve Hiru-dan, the sword of Enkidu, one of the two people worshipped by the Aldurans.
The party left early and made it to the temple a few hours before nightfall. A small brown mound was the only clue anything was even there, but a darkened dirt stairwell led them down, as Linus waved them in, perching himself atop the mound.
After several minutes of descent they exited into shaped stone hallway with a pedestal. On the pedestal they found divots in two rows of three columns, and in the top row were orbs, one Red, one Blue, and on the bottom an Ice coloured orb. A quick survey revealed the number seven atop an opened doorway in front of them. Some manipulation of the balls revealed that removing them closed the doorway.
They ventured through the doorway and found a similar hallway and pedestal, but this time an intersection as well, to the left a pedestal with the word NEW on it, and a large globe adorned it, featuring ten images of monsters, each uniquely coloured, and a crosshair on the globe, as well as an orb shaped mound on the pedestal. To the right, a pedestal with the word OLD on it, and an orb sized hole. A quick test to dispose of an orb was unsuccessful as the hole refused the orb.
The middle pedestal was identical to the first, but the orbs on this were Green, Black, and Gold, all in the top row, and the closed doorway in front of them had the number 22 above it. After some manipulation of this pedestal, the party brought the orbs back to the previous pedestal. They quickly pieced together that the Gold Orb could also keep the first door open, and assumed the top row “added” value, and the bottom row
“subtracted” value and so took the other five balls to the second pedestal, but were unable to find a winning combination. At some point during this Linus got bored and came down to taunt the party.
They moved to the NEW pedestal and began to look for patterns, eventually realizing the colours and monsters were in a particular order, and that after summoning one of the colours they didn’t yet have, it would summon a new orb for them – they also discovered that when they had summoned an orb, they could now dispose of another. After some trial and error they figured out the values that each orb stood for, and left the Gold to hold the first door while they placed the Red, Green, and Black orbs in the top row to open the door.
Faced with a final door and pedestal and the number zero, they did some calculations and summoned a Silver ball from the pedestal, placing it in the top row, while leaving the Ice and Blue in the bottom, opening the door into another dark, dirt staircase, which they traveled down for several minutes.
This time opening into a large hexagonal room, with a smaller hexagonal stone room in the middle. Each inner hexagon corner featured a symbol, which the party quickly assumed indicated where a specific one of them should stand:
Armour for Donovan
Water for Djembe
a Shield for Santa
a Bear for Pheezz
the Sun for Kris
and a Snake for Soro.
As soon as they all stood on these triggers, they were teleported into what they presumed was the hexagonal room they had just seen, each in one of the corners. Kris attempted to move forward, but was unable to – Djembe tried similarly and was successful, but in doing Santa found himself move in the same direction, and as each of the made or attempted moves, they noticed a gigantic pair of stone wheels above them that would rotate between monster symbols. After some time the party eventually maneauver Djembe to the middle, where a trapdoor opened up, shuttling him below. They quickly solved the rest of the puzzle, and found themselves in a large stone room with the same two stone wheels on a wall, set to the same monster as the final turn in the previous room.
The stones began to glow and something seemed to be materializing in front of them. The party took up combat positions, as a genie and a gorgon appeared. Half the party opted to quickly rush the gorgon, but as they brought their weapons down on her, they found themselves unable to move. However, Kris was unaffected by her gaze, and called down the wrath of heaven, crippling the beast. While some remained unable to attack, the rest of the party turned to cut down the hideous beast, leaving only the genie, who blew dust into the party, searing their flesh. Kris again called the heavens onto the genie, only to see him vanish and reappear unharmed. The party reanimated, began their assault in earnest on the genie, who kept his barrage of magical breath attacks going, bringing Djembe to his knees – but not enough, as the magic of Kris brought him back as Santa blocked what surely would’ve been a fatal blow to the Seidiir. An arrow from Soro struck true, as did the fists of Pheezz and Wwrrawr. Donovan‘s attack connected strongly, and the genie’s visage began to fade. Twice more he blinked in and out, but as he ran out of wishes, a mighty swing from the injured Djembe cleaved the genie’s chains in twain, severing his ties with the world, and he disappeared for a final time.
The battle ended, a door opened in front of the party into a small dimly lit room, in which they found a sword in stone. Not one to waste time, Donovan pulled it out, and in doing so a circle of the orbs they had used earlier rose up from the floor, and the room lit up more showing the same large hexagonal room they had been in previously, sans the smaller hexagon in the center. This time the room had six coloured emblems above them, however, done with their task, the party gathered the orbs as well and headed back to Arcania, planning to revisit in the morning.
Arriving back at the Sundered Shield at evening, Rephaim was very pleased with the return of Hiru-dan, and agreed that he would discuss an allegiance with the Tribes. Arda Movale was to return with the party to Ignos to discuss the terms.
The party went to bed.
In the morning the party headed back to Temple of Savant and into the hexagonal room, evaluating the colours on the walls.
Blue, Red, Silver, Green, Gold, and Black. Donovan grabbed the Blue ball and stood on the blue pressure plate, only to feel like he was being drowned. A few different attempts were made, but eventually Djembe took the blue ball and stood on the plate, suffering no ill consequence. A few more ill effects, and party eventually figured out that the colours represented the party themselves:
Blue for the seaborn Djembe
Green for the natureborn Pheezz
Fire for the fireforged Donovan
Silver for the shieldarm of Santa
Gold for the sunkissed Kris
and Black for the shadow left by Soro
Another falling sensation, then darkness.
Donovan woke up to find his hands struck by hammers, and after the pain subsided, a tingling revealed a hammer sigil on one hand, an an anvil on the other.
Santa woke to a shield slamming him in the face, and after the pain subdided, a tingling on his hands revealed a sigil of a shield.
Kris woke to find the roof opening above him, as a brilliant gold light bathed him, as he felt a tingling across his forehead.
Soro woke to arrows pinning his hands to the walls, fading seconds later, leaving a sigil of an arrow on one, and a target on the other.
Pheezz woke from an earthquake that sent him sprawling, but as the quake continued, he felt a tingling in his feet, and found himself able to stand in the quake, as a sigil of rock appeared on his feet.
Djembe woke to find himself under a waterfall, as the water stopped, he felt a tingling across his hands, and a sigil of spraying water appeared.
Then they woke up.
The party each sat up in bed, checked their hands and faces, seeing the sigils still etched into their skin, realized they had been dreaming – but not quite. Not too fussed, they all got up and prepared for their meeting with Gren Bosman – but not after some experimenting with their newfound abilities.
The meeting with Gren was a rousing success, and Ivan agreed to return with the party and set up accomodations, while Gren rounded up the rest of the guild to be transported back to Ignos. The party met up with Arda, and began their trip back to Helenia.
One last goal to achieve, the party decided to charter a boat to take Arda and Ivan back to Ignos while they ambush the steel shipment.
A few days out, Djembe’s talents allowed them to pinpoint the location of the freighter and its two guards. Covered in darkness, they approached and let loose a barrage onto the rear guard, scuttling the ship almost immediately. The second ship came around while the freighter attempted escape, but was sunk, as they caught back up and rammed full speed into the back of the freighter.
Charging the top deck, they made quick work of the garrison stationed onboard, forcing the survivors to pilot it back to Ignos.
The party swing back around to escort Arda and Ivan as well as their cargo, landing in Ignos. A quick meeting and debriefing with the leadership, with introducing their new allies and making considerations for when and how the 2,000 Alduran troops would arrive as the key points, and the party were sent for some rest and relaxation while the next moves were put into action.