Zor, Dravago 12, 993 YK
The gala began with simple refreshments in the lobby’s large foyer. The party mingled with some of the guests for the first hour or so. Gin met Sir Roderick of Aundair, a genial knight. Siegfried discovered that Mallora was at the gala, one of the Karrnathi party. Josephine was immediately met by a young man from Thrane named Drego Sarhain, who relentlessly flirted with her and always seemed to find her at the most inopportune moments. During the latter part of the evening, the group received a message from an unknown source that read “Someone at this party is going to die” but gave no further information. They spent a bit of time investigating, but gathered only a little. The Zil Gnomes seemed to know that there were at least three intelligence operatives at the party. Sir Roderick and Prince Oargev ir’Wynarn had a brief scuffle that Josephine and Gin helped defuse.
After gambling for a while, and losing a good bit of gold to the blank-faced Helkashtai, Siegfried cozied up to Saila Elorenthi d’Phiarlan, owner of the Twilight Palace, though Saila appeared to have additional interest in Siegfried that he ended up rebuffing. She left the party early in response. Mallora, witnessing the encounter, seemed to figure out something about her deal with Siegfried, and spoke to him with veiled threats. Lord Tharsul of Karrnath then spoke with Siegfried, asking questions about Mallora, somewhat suspicious of her, though Siegfried chose not to give him any real information.
Gin met a lovely young Brelish lady by the name of Nyrielle… who ended up being another Dark Lantern that was quite upset he had introduced himself directly to Lord Beren ir’Wynarn using “his real name”, Destir. In reality, Gin had been using his father’s name, but she didn’t know any better. In order to explain the discrepancy, he decided to be truthful and explain how he is from the future. Nyrielle now believes that he is the worst liar in the history of the Dark Lanterns.
For a good part of the evening, Ixen spent his time as a bear, amusing the audience alongside Phiarlan entertainers. Later, he brushed against Ambassador Jorasesh from Riedra and was overcome with fear for a moment. He later shook the ambassador’s hand, receiving a pounding headache for his troubles, as the sigil of the White Lady flashed in his mind.
As the evening wrapped up, Siegfried gruffly began to question why the party was bothering to investigate a possible death when their chief task has been to recover the piece of the Ashen Crown in Droaam. Josephine stopped him from leaving and chastised him, asking what has turned him into this kind of person. It soon came to light that Josephine’s original mission, when she met the group on the lightning rail in Zilargo, was to find Siegfried. The Sovereign Host seemed to feel that Siegfried had a darkness in him that was holding him back—that he could be a great force for good if he could only be fixed. Begrudgingly, Siegfried agreed that maybe they should look into the potential murder.
With the majority of the delegates having left, the party returned to their suite, where Ekhaas accosted them, excited that she had figured out what the pieces of the Ashen Crown in their possession actually do. Karuuk’s Circlet helps the wearer to uncover history, granting them insight into the history of people, objects, and places. Murkoorak’s Orb was designed to preserve history, allowing the user to store memories and information within it and prevent the ravages of time from affecting physical objects in its vicinity. Another of the pieces, Lurtaan’s Cord, should allow someone to retrieve memories from the Orb if they weren’t the one to place them in. After learning this, the party went to sleep for the night.
Far, Dravago 13, 993 YK
Upon waking, the group departed the Twilight Palace and met the rest of the delegates in the Calabas courtyard, where a caravan of eight carriages awaited. Rohagar approached the party, having been absent for some time. She informed them that Orshok, the gatekeeper orc they’d met twice before, had been waylaid on his way to her clan and needs her help. He’s waiting for her at the Forest of Flesh, in western Droaam, where he believes something is happening that relates to the party’s quest. She bade them farewell, promising to seek them out when she can. She took Irik’s coin with her so that the group has a way of contacting her, even if it’s a bit roundabout. Rohagar departed and the group found that the delegates had already taken spots in individual carriages, along with a few newcomers that hadn’t encountered yet, including a monk by the name of Volik.
Forced to split up and sit in different carriages, the group did so reluctantly. Siegfried and Volik found themselves sitting with the Cyrans, Gin chose to sit with the Riedrans, Ixen with the Zil gnomes, Ekhaas wanted to question the Valenar elves that had joined, and Josephine ended up sitting with the Thranes at Drego’s behest. It is quickly discovered that Volik received an invitation much like the group’s and it has since had their names added to it, though he finds Siegfried’s name is missing, instead listing one Darren Arkalis. Gin learned a decent amount about Riedran culture and philosophy, but had no luck getting anything useful out of Helkashtai.
Soon, they all regrouped during a break and everyone met Volik. They discovered that their original invitation had multiplied into one for each person, including all of their names. Siegfried was replaced with Darren Arkalis on all of them. Josephine became suspicious. Though mute, Volik managed to communicate that he had lost his voice because of The Gentlemen and that he has a personal score to settle with Ilthane the Black, who massacred his monastery. He’d also been having visions of Cyre’s destruction. He joined the group, given their similar interests and equally mysterious invitations.
The first day’s journey was interrupted late by an ambush at Korlaak Pass, where the caravan was attacked by harpies and gargoyles. Many of the delegates’ aides, servants, and guards died in the battle, but none of the delegates themselves. That night, Ghyrrn met with some of the Dark Pack, werewolves in Droaam serving the warlord Zaeurl. They had hunted down some of the surviving harpies that fled near the end of the ambush and had tortured one for information, learning that the harpies had been fed information by someone that they didn’t consider a Droaam native. Volik had also witnessed Drego briefly vanish by some magic, but was found outside of camp relatively quickly.
Dravago 14 – 18, 993 YK
The remainder of the trip to the Great Crag was uneventful. Josephine prodded Siegfried for a bit of information, asking him about the Orb of Dol Azur and seeing what he planned to do with it, then speaking with him about the name Darren Arkalis. He confessed that it was “someone he once knew” that people are better off not knowing. The question of time travel arose again and, this time, as they discussed the future, Volik was listening from a short distance away. Josephine promised to help Siegfried try to solve whatever problems he was facing and felt that he should tell the group about it, as she’s sure they would be willing to help. He remained unconvinced. Meanwhile, Gin spied on the Brelish party and heard a story about Lord Beren’s brief encounter with Sora Maenya during his youth—and how she slaughtered his friends. Heavy black and vast storm clouds began to let loose over the savannas and the Great Crag, the lone mountain looming in the distance.