Rescuing the Ylari Ambassador
Exploits in Thyatis
During summer play, we focused on our auxiliary characters i.e. the Thyatian and Darokinian parties. We achieved what follows...
The Thyatis party accompanied by Lana and a lone magic-user named Rumberak were transported to the Isle of Hattias by the Emperor's Magist Demetrion to rescue the Ylari ambassador - Karim Al-Amar - to Thyatis. This unwitting individual had been taken captive by the fanatical and xenophobic Storm Soldiers of Hattias. On the island of Hattias itself they fought gargoyles in the Century Hills and battled an Aerial Servant (sent by a Patriarch of Vanya, a sympathiser to the Storm Soldiers' cause), before escaping the island aboard a commandeered sailing vessel. The Ylari ambassador gifted the party the Desert Rose - a fabulously bejewelled brooch which would confer great prestige upon the bearer in the eyes of the Alasiyan people. In addition, each companion was gifted a magical item by Demetrion for having served the Empire. Lana asked for the opportunity to research the powers of Lucinius' staff alongside the Archmage and thus gained knowledge of the item's workings.
An old foe at large...
Later on, the same group (namely Lana, Antonius, Lassandra and a naval cleric of Asterius named Helena) found themselves investigating the burglary of a nobleman's villa in the Silver District of Emperor's Hill. The companions' enquiries led them once more into the catacombs beneath Thyatis City, where they uncovered details of a potentially devastating attack against the City. Lana's old enemy the necromancer Maximus was at large and allied with the Guild of Alchemists; they were plotting to introduce a toxin into the City's water supply which would zombify the city's denizens. Through forging a hasty alliance between various clerical orders, the group was able to overturn the scheme and save the City. Antonius betrayed his recent enrolment as a member of the Thieves Guild known as the Shadow Hand, thus adding a new entry to the list of cities from which he was barred. In order to lay low for a while the wily thief and his companion Conor set sail aboard their newly acquired craft and sailed south to the pirate town of Crossbones.
Karnus' kin kidnapped!
Back in Karameikos a short while before, news had reached Karnus that his sister Vorha - a novice priestess within the Church of Karameikos - had disappeared and was presumed to have been kidnapped. Only the party's old adversaries the Iron Ring Slavers could have been behind the wrongdoing; a chase began across land and sea to retrieve Karnus' missing sibling. Karnus journeyed from port to port however Vorha's kidnappers constantly seemed one pace ahead. After weeks at sea Karnus and his retinue arrived on the Isle of Dawn, far to the east of their home continent. All was not plain sailing, as the party had its work cut out - firstly, to liberate Vorha from her wealthy owner who had no intention of giving up his newest acquisition, secondly, to abate a mutiny aboard the ship which was bore them homeward, and lastly, to battle gargantuan sea-monsters which threatened their safe passage along the way.
Midway through the voyage to the Isle of Dawn the ship's reserves of fresh water began to run low. The Wavedancer's crew, which was predominantly male, stopped at a small forested island in the middle of the sea where a spring was located. While replenishing the water flasks a group of lithe and comely females emerged from within trees around the poolside... These were dryads, one of whom approached Karnus and bid him escort her daughter (who had been conceived by a human father - an Ostlander fisherman who still dwelled on the island) back to the mainland. The mother had no wish for her daughter to remain confined in such a dull and remote location; alongside Karnus she would be able to travel the world and see great sights. Karnus agreed to act as the half-dryad's guardian, whereupon her father presented him with a magical ring of life-preservation. So it was that the party gained its newest addition (and Karnus a potential apprentice) in the form of Betula.
Disaster averted in Darokin
At the bidding of a merchant by the name of Jeddarin Corran, the Darokin party travelled to an abandoned fort in their homeland's northern mountains. Title to Corran Keep had passed to Jeddarin through the Estate of a deceased family member, however initial investigations indicated that the Keep was occupied by 'undesirables.' Jeddarin was keen to hire some dependable individuals for eviction purposes. He was also keen to make sure any family relics or heirlooms passed to him, but told the party members that any other treasure they uncovered within the Keep would be theirs to retain.
The party members entered the Keep and were immediately set upon by strange birds which emitted electrical energy. This fascinated Adriana who, when combat ended, collected several of the birds' corpses for research purposes. (Her subsequent attempt to create a new electricity-based spell using the creatures' feathers as a component failed.) The Keep's inhabitants were soon encountered - a collective of human-like folk whose grey skin radiated an eerie glow and who welcomed the prospect of death with unnerving cheerfulness. Spooked, the companions were drawn into combat against a deathless descendant of the Corran clan who named himself "Lord Kazakk". Kazakk refused to depart the Keep peacefully therefore the party was obliged to take hostile action against them. Seemingly not needing to breathe, he attempted to evade them by hiding at the bottom of a deep, water-filled pit however Dudley gave pursuit, lasso-ed the man underwater and hauled him back to the surface.
While exploring Lord Kazakk's personal chambers, a mirror-like item was uncovered, draped in fabric. To the companions' astonishment a man's face formed within the mirror's surface and spoke to them, begging them to help him escape the mirror where - he claimed - he had been held captive for a long, long period. The stranger seemed to indicate that the fate of the world itself hung in the balance. Jeremy was persuaded into taking the man's place, but was returned to his companions' midst a short while later. The being, who called himself Rheddrian, managed to modify what he termed the "mirror shield" so that it would no longer exude dangerous energy as it had been doing up until that point. Rheddrian remained concerned however, claiming to have travelled to Mystara aboard a magical ship which had fallen from the sky; the mirror-shield was one remnant from his ship however he could sense other parts which were still operative, and could be leaking dangerous energy. There was no way of telling how unstable those energies would be once they combined with Mystara's natural and magical forces. Rheddrian thanked his rescuers for having liberated him, but gravely informed them that he would most likely need to call upon their assistance in the future if other remnants from his ship could be located.
Lana and the dragon ... Hadrian and the woman spurned
Lana travelled to Mount Leggio in northern Thyatis where she spent time in the company of the mighty white dragon Kaltvyndar, steed of Sir Gustav Schmidt of Hattias - a Knight of the Air who was pleased when Lana returned his long-missing magical broadsword. Having obtained the magical component - white dragon scales - she desired, a gleeful Lana went to visit her friend the wizard Hadrian. Something was amiss however, as she found the man acting strangely. It came to light his body had been possessed (by means of a Magic Jar spell) by a deranged ex-lover, a wizardess whose jealousy drove her to spoil the man's good name before seeking his untimely demise. Alone in a foreign land, with the wizard's charmed hill giant minions to contend with, Lana had her work cut out.
Personal time and social engagements
Once safely back in Specularum, Lana and Vasily attended Stefan Karameikos' birthday party in the High Palace of the Duke's stronghold, where they danced the night away and rendered themselves tipsy (well, one of them did) while making the acquaintance of the Duke's Ministers and various foreign Ambassadors. Lana subsequently indulged in some personal time; she rented a cottage in the village of Glaston and passed the winter in the company of her fellow villagers, whilst her adventuring companions returned from the Isle of Dawn and undertook various personal quests.
Onward to Rockhome
The party of five reformed to travel through western Ylaruam and under Drewen's leadership entered the dwarven nation of Rockhome. Having reached the capital Dengar, Drewen, Karnus and Lana set about gaining access to the ancient libraries where they hoped to uncover shreds of information regarding the whereabouts of Drewen's long-scattered clan. It was here in the dwarven city that word reached the companions - war had been declared between the nations of Glantri and Alphatia.
An account of the party's travels through Rockhome is available HERE
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