Kenji accepted Sirène’s assistance and healing quietly, watching her work her healing magic. Once she was done he nodded in response to her silent smile, “Thank you Milady!”
The Samurai didn’t know what to make of her or the other newcomers; he had been cautious of them at first especially the way some of the others accepted them openly with such ease. Thus far they had shown no signs of deceit and it was beginning to win over his sense of distrust of them.
As Sirène moved away he had gathered up his things and after storing them moved to assist in the search for Ulthok if that is what they were doing.
(As Kenji is yet unaware of the ‘problem’ with Cor as he was unconscious and no one has informed him of it, I will not address that at this time. But I am sure it will come up eventually )
With the search for the two missing party members partly successful, Kenji for the most part found intact, a new choice did the party again face. This new choice of to proceed further through the tests or to take this newer tunnel and perhaps bypass them.
With Cor the parties last leader now evil and untrustworthy, leadership had fallen back on to Alasdair the group’s original leader before his trip to hell. Once he had confirmed Kenji’s health he at once set the party to a few tasks first of which was the examination of the amber light by Cynil and Sirene. A few moments of careful study by each, a detect magic spell cast in vain, brought nothing but disappointment as nothing unusual was found to indicate the reason for Ulthok’s continued absence.
Kenji finally back to his old self, more or less, asked and was given an update of what the party faced, including that Cor once leader was now evil and had been replaced once again by Alasdair. And that for the time being members of the party had agreed not to attack the once good Cleric. Clear by the look in Althena’s eyes as the samurai was told this, she was not one of them, and Cor would need to watch his back around her. With this info digested he moved to stand in the general area of Cynil and Sirene as to provide them some sort of protection.
With the search for Ulthok a failure the party had to face the saddening fact that for the moment and maybe forever Uthok was gone. With this revelation as such the new /old leader of the party was quick to broach to all the question of which way to go. The newer tunnel or to continue the tests, in this Althena spoke for the first time since her anger at Algrak and Maggot had surfaced.
“It is clear that this newer tunnel was crafted after the work of my father as the magic or tools used to create it left a rougher cut to the stone of the mountain. We have been told by Maggot that the passageway continues deeper into the mountain at a downward angle and if it continues will most likely take us below this level of the mountain. The question in my mind is will it still lead us to the sword or take us away from it. On top of that we must also decide how we will transport the body of Rayne until we can once again raise her back to life. Those call’s my lord Alasdair, as it seems you are party leader once again, must be yours to make.”
With that said the lady Althena moved off to the side to give the rest of the party their say. Her eyes catching those of Cor/Algrak she left him no doubt of her desire to kill him or kill the creature within him if given the chance. Then the look in her eyes changed to surprise and she quickly turned away as if lost in thought.
For the moment the choice of which way to go the question, the answer needed soon...........
It had been almost a month now since they had lost her shortly after the city of Main and still they could gain no trace of her. The last time they had any contact had been as she traveled North with the rest of her so called ‘guardians’. However the time had come for most of them to return to him as his forces now once again stood on the mainland of Trilogy. His vast army stretching out into miles of darkness, marching boldly North, Northeast and West in conquest. Eight would go, one would stay, that being the one who screamed. The moment she was once more found it would call to the rest and once more the tracking of her to the sword would continue...............
(DM OOC: Ok here’s this week’s delayed post from Sunday as stated in my Q/A post next post will be Sunday the 27th to give everyone enough time to post. Ok good posting by everyone and please keep it up. )
Posted on 2010-06-17 at 01:07:20.
Edited on 2010-06-17 at 19:50:21 by TannTalas
Steelight Sage of the Realms Karma: 44/9 1024 Posts
"Kenji, since you seem to have recovered I would ask you to bear the burden of Rayne's body for now. Please treat her as gently as you are able. We will delay our departure only long enough for Maggot to bind her wounds, if he would be so kind. We don't want to leave any more of a trail than we need to, and there are many creatures that may be attracted to the blood of her wounds."
He looks Algrak square in the eyes. "Know this evil one. I have given my word, and I will hold you to yours. But that does not mean that you have my trust, though I know you do not require it." Once again he looks to the group. "For now, that is the end of it. If he betrays us, he will learn the true meaning of righteous vengeance. If not, he has kept his word, and I, at least, must keep mine."
Alasdair moves to the tunnel looking down into the darkness thoughtfully, saying a silent prayer to Odin to guide their way.
"We will descend through the tunnel for 4 hour's time to determine if this new (relatively) construction bypasses any of the trials and will get us to the sword and therefore out of this place faster. If so, we increase Rayne's chances to return to us. If at the end of that time there is no advantage in sight, we will revisit the decision of whether to continue or come back here and furhter pursue our trials. If there is disagreement I would hear it now. I do not want a single decision at any point in our trek to divide us any more than we already are." he says, obviously referencing the situation surrounding Algrak. If no one objects he ensures adequate light (since I don't know what we've used to light our way thus far) and leads the way down into the newer tunnel.
Maggot gave a nod and then moved over to the body of the Lady Rayne. He removed her cloak and then from his own pack produced several pieces of cloth. They were not the cleanest in the world but they would keep the blood from creating a trail. He began to bind her wounds; “Well it seems Lady Rayne you are to walk among fields of green for a while. If, while you do so you should meet a young woodsman that might remind you of old man Maggot. Walk with him for a while. He is a kind, gentle man and will be a good traveling companion for a while.”
Maggot paused for a bit as if he were listening, “No brother she does not yet speak to me, but if you find her be her guide in those fare away places.” Maggot completed the task of binding the wounds. He then removed some rope and another cloak one of the other party members had given him and used it and the one the Lady Rayne was wearing to now wrap the body in. The whole time he took great care and always he was whispering or humming to her. As he began to use his own cloak he spoke more plainly, “Well my new found cloak. I was saving you for a different task in a different time and place. But it seems I have need of you now and I could think of no better use for you.” As Maggot finished and was tying the last bit of rope in place, “May these bonds be as a impenetrable force than none shell brake except by those whom whishing to do good unto you, Lady Rayne of the Elvin People.
As the party was ready to move on Maggot assisted Kenji with her body and once he was ready to move on, “Call for me if you require anything else. I now give her over to you for keeping.” Maggot then found a place in line away from the Lady Althena, for her words still sat like poison upon his ears.
Posted on 2010-06-19 at 16:52:47.
Edited on 2010-06-19 at 16:55:28 by Kyle
Brianna Not Dragon Mistress Karma: 105/32 2282 Posts
Cynil moves over to where Maggot works quietly on Rayne's wounds, "I will help you." Cynil offers and she kneels down to assist Maggot. She works quietly offering her own prayers to her Deity that Rayne will be brought back. Her death had been awful, evil act of the entity that possessed Cor. For that act alone would she try her best to see that entity destroyed and Cor return to them free of its evilness.
When the discussion was raised about what way to go she thought carefully. Would it negate the test that Althena had to past or not.
"I have thought about this choice of which way we should travel, whether to finish the tests as they were set up or take this new opportunity to take these newer tunnel with the hope that we would reach the end successfully. Althena Perhaps you can shed light on this matter. Do you think you must complete these test that your father set up in order or can we try to short cut them and reach the same end."
"Well Alasdair I see you are expecting me to disagree with you. I shall not disappoint you. Like I said before I doubt that a shortcut will be helpful. Perhaps we can get out of here faster but if we do not pass the trials we take a risk of not gaining the sword. Would be interesting if we exited here only to find we traveled through a one way passage and had to restart the tests. But you have chosen to steal the mantle of leadership and so it is your choice." Algrek simply waited to see which way they would journey. He found it interesting that they were leaving a safe location to journey into unknown peril without taking the opportunity to ensure the spell casters were well prepared. Always seemed the sword swingers wanted to move as soon as they were healed forgetting the needs of those who healed them and protected them from the arcane.
THE FORTRESS OF CRAGGEN CORE
King Maridynn of Shan’Tara sat quietly in the main hall of the fastness called Craggen Core along with over a dozen other Rulers whose armies now were part of the main combined army of good as a young Callahornian Knight gave the detailed tactical briefing of events so far in this new war. Ever since the Dark King had launched his naval invasion 5 days ago the Kings and Queens had been in dire need of accurate information of events.......
“We now know that that the first wave of the invasion broke itself upon the coast watcher forts, easily losing 20-30,000 in just minutes and another 10,000 in the fighting afterwards. As for our defending forces we lost in comparison roughly 2,000 soldiers However subsequent waves, with the help of a small host of dragons destroyed all the forts within in the 100 mile span between the much larger forts of Grippen Ward in Annoria and Bakia in Palantine. With strong beachheads now established the Dark Army is posed to begin marching on both of those forts within a few days.
Both forts are fully manned, supplied and reinforced but estimates are that they will only hold the Dark King’s army for a few weeks if indeed that long. Even as I speak to you, Lords and Ladies, the Dark King has sent out a pair of scout units in force to the East and West to seek a way around the defenses we have set in those forts. To the North West of Fort Bakia we have a large mobile force of Knights, Horse Archers and Chariots operating out of the now abandoned town of Galach. They will begin commencing hit and run battles against that scout force once it reaches the area and they should be able to hold them there until recalled back to here.
To the North East of Grippen Ward in the area of the Spindal Mountains a large force of Dwarves, Elvin Archers, Human Infantry and a few Storm Giants found to be living there are at present digging a massive maze of trenches that once that scout force discover it should hopefully have them turning away towards the West. All the cities in the dark armies path are or have been evacuated and burnt to the ground to deny him any quick resupply. If our planning is successful the Dark Kings army will be funneled here to this fortress. In that, our best guess is that his army will reach us in roughly 5 months, hopefully starving, tired, and without a fast resupply ability.”
The rest of the hour was taken up by many questions, some with ready answers, some without, but at its end Maridynn made his way back to his large quarters, his bodyguards close around him.
Awaiting him there was his chief intelligence gatherer Rula Evnstr, who once the King was seated gave her findings to the King‘s most important question.... A question from his heart..
“My sources have found no sign of Lord Alasdair’s party My King it seems they have gone to ground and could be in hiding.”
“What about the last messenger sent out to them, the last one to make contact, what was her name again?”
“Pegasus trooper Rayne Fireheart, My Lord, a Ranger/Cleric in skill set. She has not returned, nor has her mount as trained, and is believed to either have joined Lord Alasdair’s party due to her healing crafts, to perhaps replace a lost member or she is dead.”
“I know Althena yet lives, I would feel her death thanks to the magical bond she placed between us, yet I need know if she is ok and her search for the sword yet continues.”
“I understand my King shall I dispatch more scouts.?”
“No, in fact we must recall all Pegasi Troopers to the fortress at once as they will soon be needed and will need the time to rest and resupply before Karza‘s lapdogs reach here.”
“My King!! do not say his name!!”
“Bah he is no God, yes he is powerful but not invincible gather yourself Rula and fear not his name I say!!”
“Yes my King is there anything else?”
“Yes one more thing Rula, ask the Lady Copria to be my guest here as soon as she is available.”
“Yes my King”
Within the span of fifteen minutes Maridynn was seated across from a most beautiful human appearing woman of robust build, long deep golden hair and eyes of light brown.
“You asked for me Maridynn??”
“Yes Copria I have a mission I would ask of you….. You do remember my adopted daughter Althena”
A smile playing on the face of Copria to the wording of the King's question, she answered in the positive.
“Of course my friend, was I not the one who first brought her to you, as asked so long ago by Allanan in his visions of the future”
“Well yes.... Well she, and the people she is with, have gone missing and I need someone to find her............."
(DM OOC: Just thought I would add a little something to the overall storyline to help keep the game interesting .
Hope you all like
My normal game post will be next Sunday)
Posted on 2010-06-21 at 04:33:17.
Edited on 2010-06-21 at 04:44:03 by TannTalas
Kenji finally back to his old self, more or less, asked and was given an update of what the party faced, including that Cor once leader was now evil and had been replaced once again by Alasdair. And that for the time being members of the party had agreed not to attack the once good Cleric. Clear by the look in Althena’s eyes as the samurai was told this, she was not one of them, and Cor would need to watch his back around her.
Kenji’s eyes narrowed as he was told of the Evil presence that now controlled Cor, he turned slowly to look up the Knight Cleric his face a mask of stone. When the tale was finished he paused and thought for a long silent moment; then walked to stand before Cor. In the blink of an eye, his Katana flew from his scabbard in a strike that would take the Cleric’s head from his shoulders. But, the blade stopped only an inch from his neck as Kenji stood there looking into the man’s eyes.
“These others may trust you,” the Samurai said sternly, “but I do not. “
Whipping the blade away and sheathing it all in one smooth movement, he stepped closer to stand nose to nose with the ‘thing’, his voice low but loud enough for all nearby to hear.
“The decision has been made and I know there is no sense in arguing the point. Not with these people. Know that I am watching you and if you betray us… I .. will .. Kill.. you instantly!”
Without another word or even waiting for a reply he turned away and went to help in the search for Ulthok if that was the next step. He would not want to leave a man behind. If Ulthok was dead then it should be easy to find his body… if not.. then they had to search.
His words to Cor, or whatever it was in there, were true… in his eyes Cor was gone and would not want an evil presence controlling his body. Death was better than having your body doing evil once you were gone. He would expect no less if he had been controlled by something evil.
True to his word, Cor could expect to see Kenji watching him, glancing his way, trying not to let him out of his sight unless necessary. If they moved out, Kenji would recommend that they keep Cor close and he would even volunteer to be right there next to the Cleric where he could keep a close eye on him and react if necessary.
When asked to carry Lady Raynes body Kenji politely refused, "I am sorry! I do not touch the dead. I mean no disrespect but it is something I am not allowed to do. Besides..." he glanced at Cor, ".. I must be on my guard."
He didnt like these sudden changes, Cor turned evil, this newcomer Alastair now the leader.. things were moving too rapidly and he didnt trust too many of the news ones yet. He would stay where he could be on his guard against a great many things it seemed.
Posted on 2010-06-21 at 14:47:49.
Edited on 2010-06-21 at 14:51:09 by YeOlde
"Well since none of you seem to be in a hurry to carry your supposedly fondly remembered and sorely missed companion I will do so." Cor picked up the one he had slain and readied himself to move. "As for trust Kenji, it is not me and my word that you should distrust for in my way I am as honorable and oath bound as you yourself."
Posted on 2010-06-21 at 17:16:39.
Steelight Sage of the Realms Karma: 44/9 1024 Posts
Decisions, and a friend
"That will not be necessary Alrgrak." Alasdair says as he walks over to the dressed and motionless form of their friend. "I will carry her. I would rather that than reduce the effectivenss of one of our spellcasters."
And I will not let him carry her. I remember what happened last time we let him near her.
"Cynil has brought up a valid point. It is likely that Althena must complete all of the trials in order to reach the sword. In which case our most reliable route is forward, not down. I admit it is a point I hadn't considered. That being the case, it seems like out best option is to continue forward."
He kneels down and gently lifts Rayne's corpse up over his shoulder.
"Let us go, and see what task awaits us next."
With that he heads towards the next trial, hoping that the rest will follow along the way.
(OOC: By the way, I addressed the spells available previously. We have more than enough healing spells amongst the group to deal with wounds and we still have plenty of offensive spells. We discussed this previously.)
"So my suggestion of avoiding the tunnel because skipping the test was not likely to be a good choice was ignored but the same idea from Cynil is a good one. Interesting. And only when I volunteer to carry your companion are any of you shamed enough to do it. 'Good' has a strange set of values I will try to understand." Cor smirked a bit and allowed Alasdair to take the body.
OOC: See Q&A post
Posted on 2010-06-22 at 01:06:11.
Edited on 2010-06-22 at 01:10:50 by Keeper of Dragons
When Kenji refused the care taking of the Lady Rayne Algrek, once called Cor stepped up and offered to take the bundle from Maggot. Then Alasdair the found stepped forward and would take the bundle form Maggot.
“If we are not to go down the new path but stick to the old then take her if you wish. I would have been needed to lead the way but as the old path is the chosen one now, I would say you allow me to keep her in my keeping. You are needed to lead and if the enemy falls upon us your sword and shield would serve a better front than one of our dead. But if you insist in taking this burden far be it from me to stop you.” Maggot now holding the bundle awaits the action of Alasdair to take it or help him to put Maggot’s pack over Maggot’s shoulder so they can all just move on.
Posted on 2010-06-22 at 01:10:50.
Steelight Sage of the Realms Karma: 44/9 1024 Posts
Bring out your dead!
"If you wish to carry her, then by all means do so. At least I am confident you will treat her with respect."
Alasdair noticably ignores Algrak's comment. He is done bickering with the creature. He assists Maggot in getting settled with his pack and Rayne's body and then leads the way to the next trial.
Posted on 2010-06-22 at 01:15:19.
Edited on 2010-06-22 at 01:15:54 by Steelight
Brianna Not Dragon Mistress Karma: 105/32 2282 Posts
Cynil's Sharp Respons
"I think that the tests are important to complete despite how costly to us they have been, just the same as you did. But you cannot be surprised if you are not trusted even though you say you will honor your oath to us. You only swore that when you life was threatened by us after you killed Rayne. How can we trust you beyond keeping you in our sight while we remain vigilant."
"And. no, we would not want you to carry Rayne at all. I would carry her before I would let you touch her, except to bring her back to life. And I can Alasdair. If I take the form of a bear, I could do it easily. So not smirk as if we were not better than you. We each do what is necessary. Kenji ins a fighter, I am only a healer and spellcaster. We work together to what is best for us all and for our mission. You are only doing things to save you life."
"We are not the same as you. Thank the Goodness for that."
"Well Cynil you are right we are not alike. I have given my word and have not made any attempt to break it or threatened you further. I have raised Maggot and offered to carry the fallen. All of you creatures of good have looked for loophole in the deal, constantly remind me that you wish to kill me as soon as possible, treat me as if I have no honor and ignore my council soley because you dislike me. If such is the way of 'good' then I am glad we are not the same. Now if we can set aside all of you prejudices perhaps we can finish these tasks." Algrek continued his preparations and waited to assigned a spot in the march order.
Posted on 2010-06-22 at 01:58:33.
Edited on 2010-06-22 at 02:01:17 by Keeper of Dragons