Old Kingdom : The Forsaken

Long Live the King
"You threw your piece of bread into the ocean!!"

We look for somewhere to drop off Finn to sneak in to find the King. Evie points out we should get him to the Charter Stones under the castle. We need a boat, so we need Quinona. And we also need her for her Wallmaker abilities.

Muriel casts a Charter spell to locate her girlfriend in the heart of the city on the ice. We are led to plaza with a crystal coffin with Quinona encased inside, dormant but alive. Muriel can sense she is trapped in Death but not passed on. She is doing her job here.

Roxy goes to steal us a boat. There are several docked nearby and no one is paying attention to them. It's about the easiest burglary she's conducted. Evie gives Finn the Silence Stone. Finn starts rowing the boat towards the castle.

Finn finds the original Charter Stones of the castle in the waterway. They are already partially enveloped by the Chaos Stones. It looks like they are suctioning away the Charter Magic. Finn examines the coated Charter Stone and it feels very uncomfortable to be this close to them both. Finn strikes the Moa staff on the Chaos Stones with intent to bind them.

A strange reverberation starts and the Charter Marks get sucked out of Moa into the Chaos Stones. The staff shatters in his hands. The Chaos Stones undulate and grow larger, creating cracks above as they push farther upwards into the castle.

Above Finn hears a voice singing that sounds like the King, but also someone else at the same time. Finn finds steps into the castle and uses a secret passage into the entrance hall which is full of corpses. The scent of blood is heavy in the air. The sing-song voice continues talking about the Seven and the Charter in a creepy way.

Finn goes back down to establish a link with what remains of the Charter Stones. He can feel the Chaos Stones too as a cold lump in the pit of his stomach.

In the Grand Hall there are ten armored Sendings waiting for Finn, smeared in blood. They turn and make a path for Finn that leads him ever closer to the voice. It is singing "The Nine Bright Shiners" but not the corrupted version. The Sendings are perfectly still as Finn walks past them.

The floors are slippery with blood and occasional bone pieces crunch under Finn's shoes. He is led ever closer to the roof. There are four armored Sendings just outside the exit to the rooftop but they do not move to intercept Finn.

The King is standing on the rooftop overlooking the Kingdom. Finn: "You've redecorated." The King turns and it's obvious there is some Free Magic thing growing out of him, similar to what was afflicting Finn before. Finn asks if Tiburolt is still in there and the King says a very small part. The King says of the Charter, "we need it to live." He claims they live on the border between order and chaos, not quite the same as other Free Magic things.

The thing retreats for a minute and Tiburolt surfaces. "I'm so sorry, Finn. I didn't mean this to happen." He says he didn't mean this to happen, but he did purposely seek out the Void Dwellers. He kept some of the eggs in his bedchamber and they started whispering to him. They are the reason Tiburolt has a corrupted Charter Mark. He implanted one in his hand. It saw Tiburolt's anger over fearful villagers killing his Abhorsen father. Tiburolt scared away the Princess by replacing the bells on her wedding day with Abhorsen bells. Apparently all this was to scare people so they would feel Abhorsens were needed again. And the Mages are locked in a room downstairs, protecting themselves. Tiburolt tells Finn to leave so it won't kill him too.

Finn asks how he can trust him now. Finn steps forward to touch Tiburolt's Charter Mark and the creature busts out of his arm. The thing says they have to cut him off now and can't let Finn leave. Moreover the Mages won't be allowed to live much longer either. Finn's arms are bound by the Chaos Stones.

Finn kicks the Void Dweller King but it hardly phases him. It sniffs at him, "What's this in your hand?" Finn stretches forward to kiss Tiburolt to try and reach him in a Charter Link. His eyes flutter open and then Finn's thorn grows into a massive briar sword. Finn goes to town with his new sword plus Elariel's blade. He slices the Void Dweller out from Tiburolt, removing 20-30% of the King's body mass. The Void Dweller's glowing weak point is exposed and Finn targets it with his Shooting Star spell. The Void Dweller bursts and the Chaos Stones begin to shrink.

Finn sings the songs of the witches to try and transfer some of his grass-arm to Tiburolt and heal him. It shoots out of Finn's hand and stitches into the King. Tiburolt's eyes open and he takes a deep gasping breath. Finn also casts a Charter healing spell to help it further. The King coughs out some small red crystals and Finn smashes them with Elariel's sword. They are pulverized into dust.

Finn asks the King a bunch of questions. Some things are revealed. The King did indeed plant the sabotage thing on the air ship. He and Hastinean were working together the whole time. Tiburolt did actually love Finn and propose.

Evie bursts in, followed by Muriel, Roxy, and Corian. Finn says the King has been "de-loused." Corain examines the King's new arm. Tiburolt says he will need to stand trial to be executed. Roxy, Evie, and Muriel go to look for the hiding mages downstairs.

The girls see the doors have almost been shreded by the armored Sendings and Free Magic creatures. But now they have dissipated. Muriel sends a Charter message through the door to let them know the danger is gone now. Inside there are injured mages including Finn's mom and Quinona's dad. Muriel immediately tells Quinona's father what happened to her and he asks to be taken to his daughter.

We take Joran to Quinona's ice coffin. Elariel and Ariel are already there, bells in hand but looking stumped. Muriel asks if this problem can't be solved by bells. Elariel thinks it has something to do with that Quinona put herself in that coffin rather than being held against her will. And she is NOT in Death, she is somewhere else. Joran leans on the coffin and whispers to his daughter.

Roxy uses her Sight to glean what needs to be done to free Quinona. She Sees Muriel using some sort of enchanted gauntlet to punch through the ice. Evie knows that there are many lost artifacts made by the Wallmakers. Joran suggests that maybe we just need to find a powerful Wallmaker to make such a thing.

We go to ask Ramoniel about where to find a Wallmaker of sufficient enchanting power. She suggests Vashalok, who made the armored Sendings that were protecting the castle. She doubts his trustworthiness now but he is certainly powerful. Ramoniel says he's in Ponstayn which is further south, just west of the Great Forest. Evie asks what Vashalok may want in return. But Ramoniel says he just wants to make things. We need to go pick up Finn, Corian, and the King, and go on a quest to Ponstayn.

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The Final Stone
You only know you love her when you let her go

Evie talks to Finn about whether he's okay. She's being super subtle about it tho, so he doesn't get oversad about how his boyfriend may be evil. But then she starts to oversell it. He says he wants to come up with a plan for when we get there. "He probably just loved me for my demon arm." So then they talk about the possibility of the king being evil, and how his charter mark was a "little" corrupt, and how suspicious he's being. 

Roxy and Dipper are having a /great/ time. Dipper won at sex, totally. But Roxy has a nightmare. She sees the castle as she did in her vision, but she's drawn in closer. She hears a chorus of voices, singing a corrupted version of the Nine Bright Shiners – "We'll sing you a song of the death of you all – five die the shiners, watch them fall." She sees Rogariel's body.

Hears: "Why do the ten stand to fight – to take from us the Charter's light?" Then Dipper's body, seen amongst the dead. "Five will die before the end – to the Ninth their souls we'll send." Then Bronwyn, with her skull smashed. At the top of the stairs, she recognizes she's just outside of the king's bedchamber. His voice, hoarse and weak – "What if One came to face me alone? Whose faith was tue, whose heart brightly shone?"

"Tell them all to hide away – on the city of ice they safely stay." Then she sees Ramoniel, bells cracked, lying among the dead. Then on to the roof, where she sees Elariel, lying dead in a diamond of protection. "Tell them all to hide away – on the City of Ice they safely stay. None can stand against our might – Stronger we'll be the more that fight." Then another flash, and around Elariel, she sees the rest of us, okay but in shock, lots of wounds, not looking our best, and in the center is Finn holding onto the lifeless body of the king.

"Bring an end to man sowing strife – Drink deep the Charter to give us life."

Roxy tells us all what she Saw, and that kind of puts a kink in the planning. Evie is sure that this means that Finn needs to go in alone. Dipper wants to go in with a more giant army. We nix that. There is some discussion on whether we should send the other five to the Clayr's glacier, since they would be safe in the city of ice. Finn argues maybe he should be let off alone.

Roxy goes away to try and focus in on Finn's future. It's difficult, because the vision has already been seen for a possible future then, but now she sees a further vision of the castle, further out, people panicking, running from free magic creatures and armored sendings, but just NE of the castle, she sees what looks like a giant crystal flower blooming on the water, but there's a thin bridge connecting it to the mainland. Her vision stays there a bit, and she sees the chaos stones falling and crumbling. Then her vision moves forward into the castle, and doesn't see any of our friends there, but she still sees Finn and the king alone at the top, Finn holding the King's lifeless body.

Evie gives Elariel the book that vindicates her, and Elariel hugs her hard and says she doesn't know how much she's done. She can finally clear her name. Then we just argue about how to send Finn in. Elariel thinks the city of ice thing could be done, but from her assistant Numiel's notes, it would take a wallmaker. Which none of us are. But Muriel's girlfriend is a wallmaker! So we resolve to find Quinona.

"I'm really ready to go into the castle now, thanks, Evie! Gawww, if I'm lucky, I'll /die/."

We get to Belisaire, and the chaos stones are in place, but so is the ice city. People have managed to break most/all of the bridges from the castle out to the city, with free magic creatures trying to build a bridge. We agree to drop off our friends at the ice city. Evie has the MOST AWKWARD goodbye with Rogariel, we all have the biggest facepalms. Dipper goes to console him, a little over-solicitously. Just about everyone is unhappy.

But Bronwyn comes and gives Finn a real good pep talk, says he hasn't failed, in what he's done or as a brother. Roxy grabs Dipper and tells him he can flirt, but to stay alive and she's coming back.

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The Old Days
"Butt grabbing for science"

After the battle we meet in the Abhorsen house.

Roxy uses her Sight to look in on Farisean, the head of the Royal Mage Corps. She Sees an oppressive atmosphere in Belisaire. Farisean and other officials are arguing in a conference room about the King and revolts in the city. The whole castle begins to shake and rumble. Roxy is pushed away from the castle in her vision and massive building-sized chaos stones erupt from the ground around it.

Elariel says those stones would be impossible unless they found a living host there in the city…like the King. She says the stones "hatch" from the void-dwellers which bind with people. The void-dwellers are from the sea but also kinda from another dimension?

We have 3 paperwings and a wyvern…some people need to be left behind at the Abhorsen House. Especially since we don't have enough pilots. But we remember that Lenariel left on foot…meaning her airship is still parked somewhere relatively nearby. We're gonna go steal an airship.

As a criminal, Roxy knows that airships are typically warded to make it a brick in the case of robbers. Muriel pilots an airship with Finn being a passenger and Dipper takes Roxy on the wyvern.

We see crumbled chaos stones from earlier. It seems like the town is largely evacuated though. Most of the Dead and Free Magic creatures appear to have wandered away from the site but we still need to be careful. Roxy guides us stealthily towards the airship. A Free Magic creature spots us. Muriel casts Slow Free Magic Creature so hard we are able to cheese it and leave the creature in the dust.

We get up to the airship and Roxy cases the joint. She finds a Charter logic puzzle type lock that she decodes and makes the airship ramp come down. Roxy disables the defenses of the Sendings aboard and tells everyone else to come abord. Muriel starts making preparations for takeoff. This is the nicest combination of speedy and luxury she has ever piloted. We head back to the Abhorsen House.

Meanwhile the others are making preparations by gathering supplies at the Abhorsen House, except for Evie who is treasure-hunting. She finds the area below the House where there are Free Magic creatures being held in Charter-spelled bottles since they cannot be killed. But she does find some cool books, including something that says Elariel did not actually forsake her vows – it was her apprentice who created the ice prison and took her Abhorsen destiny. She also finds a couple of Charter Skins.

We take everyone who is not Belial with us on the airship. And one paperwing and one wyvern too. Evie ransacks the captain's quarters for Lenariel's cool stuff. She finds a large cache or cash. She also finds the Silence Stone – a small white orb that creates a bubble of silence withing ten meters around it. It has been used against Abhorsens in the past. There is a small satchel with Charter marks on it – Evie sees there's a swarm of magical insects inside. And also a small handheld fan that slams her against the wall of the room when she gently fans herself.

Finn and Corian rush into the captain's quarters when they hear the thud. Evie claims she was practicing her "lady wiles" and it got away from her. Corian examines the fan and determines it can cause gale winds when it is waved. Evie hands the bag o' bees to Corian; she does not want it. Corian can tell it will be swarm of something but not necessarily bees. The Charter Skins are for a wolf and giant eagle. Evie "gifts" the fan to Muriel.

It will take us about two days to get to Belisare, just after the chaos stones from Roxy's vision are supposed to appear.

But Evie also gets it on with Rogereal. The sexiness of pending death and all.

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Deep Into Death
"Hey Charter-bags!"

Elariel and Ariel will go into Death while sheltered in the cave while Dipper and Corian watch over them. They form a Diamond of Protection. 

The rest of us make our way towards the Abhorsen House. We leave the horses untied and let them go. Evie and Finn do a perimeter check of the island while Muriel lets the others into the Abhoresen House. Evie makes note of a well that she recalls contains a secret escape route only for last resort. At the Southern tip of the island there is a tower and Sendings are fishing. The Paperwing platform is closer to the Northern tip of the island and has enough for maybe 4 people.

Muriel figuratively kicks open the door. The place has a stale odor and a Sending is picking up empty bottles of booze. Ramoniel groans; Belial is surely here. Ramoniel storms into the parlor and the others follow. Belial is lounging in a chair surrounded by bottles. Ramoniel knocks the bottle out of his hand. She tells him to hand over his Bells because she's relieving him of duty. He reached for his Bells but Roxy grapples him and Muriel takes his Bells. One of the Sendings comes in an puts the Abhorsen coat on Ramoniel. The Sendings escort Belial to some quarters.

Ramoniel hands over the Abhorsen-in-Waiting Bells to Evie as we prepare to go into Death. 

Back in the cave Ariel and Elariel are preparing to go into Death. Corian and Dipper cast their Diamond of Protection. Dipper casually mentions he thinks Roxy would be happy on The Island of Wailing Pines. As Corian and Dipper chat about girls, fog rolls into the cave at their feet. They ready themselves for an attack.

Back at the House we find a feast prepared. Muriel sits down and lets herself be pampered while Evie tries to fight off Sendings with Abhorsen-in-Waiting armor. Ramoniel finally gathers us to go to the top of the tower. Rogereal kisses Evie for good luck; she dips him.

Evie and Muriel go into Death. They make their way through the First Precinct until they find Ariel and Elariel. Together we all head farther into Death. In the Fourth Precinct Elariel stops us to ask how far we have gone. Elariel warns us that in the Seventh Precinct there is bubbling water that may scald us and obscure our view. And there is a Chaos Stone in the Seventh Precinct that exists there as a living thing. Scholars that studied it went insane. We need to rush through and get to the Eighth Precinct. Elariel says it will talk to us; do not listen and do not stop. We need to fight it with the strength of five Abhorsens, not just three.

In the cave glowing red eyes peek in. A small Dead Hand wanders in. Corian casts a wall of wind across the entrance to the cave, creating a massive howling sounds as the Hand is swept away and slammed into a tree. Dipper nods, impressed.

On the tower Roxy, Finn, and Rogereal spot a large dark cloud heading their way. A telescope shows that it is a mass of gore crows bearing down on us. Finn notices Lenariel coming toward the House too with an army of Dead. Finn goes to look for Belial. He is passed out in the bed. Finn throws a basin of water on him. Finn demands he active the House's defenses. All Belial does is tell a Sending to do such and then tries to go back to sleep. Finn does not let him, he badgers Belial some more about how the defenses work. Finn follows the Sending supposedly off to make the waters rise around the House. The waters do indeed start to rise and the stepping stones are covered as the banks of the whole river rise around the House. Roxy and Finn can see the fog rolling in around the cave entrance. 

In Death the gaggle of Abhorsens are trying to rush through the Fifth Precinct. Muriel trails behind Evie, guarding her back. Ramoniel is ringing Saraneth as we run. Evie and Muriel agree together to ring their Kibeths together. The Dead start walking further into Death on their command.

In the Sixth Precinct the water is very shallow but full of the Dead. Muriel is grabbed by the Dead. Evie comes to her aid.

Back in the cave the Dead are having trouble getting past Corian's wind wall.

Back at the House the gore crows have started dive bombing the House's shield. Roxy tries to call fog but can't manage to obscure more than just their feet. Finn is vigilant concerning the integrity of the House shield. They notice the Dead Hands are not able to get into the cave int he distance, but also see mordicants approaching the entrance.

In Death the Dead have their hands around Muriel's ankles. She cannot break free but Ramoniel uses her sword to slash them. The Abhorsens keep running. A sinkhole swallows us down into the Seventh Precinct. The water is almost scalding hot. There is steam everywhere. This is Muriel and Evie's first time this far into Death; they hold hands. On the horizon a wall of fire marks the portal to the Eighth Precinct.

A pair of mordicants push through Corian's wall of wind. Corian uses his glaive to slice through one of them. Dipper uses his hammer to smash in the head of the other mordicant. It doesn't kill it, but it does slow the undead abomination down.

Back at the House the shields are giving out. Luckily Finn is a badass mage and he knows how to pump more more power into the shields. But instead Finn creates a black hole to suck gore crows into it. Roxy launches an ice spike at Lenariel but she sees it coming from that far away and dodges it.

In the Eighth Precinct Ariel calls out to her sisters to come with her. Muriel tries to convince Evie it's a trick. Ariel holds out what looks like a red pebble to Evie: "It's not too late." But Evie grabs Muriels's hand and runs for the Gate. Ariel turns into a mass of red and black tentacles. We run through the Gate.

Finn throws a Shooting Star at Lenariel that slams into her. He tips his hat at her, even though he is not actually wearing a hat. Roxy makes the "suck it" move at her. Finn tells her to "Take your Dead and leave!" Roxy screams at Lenariel that Finn is going to absolutely fuck her up and Lenariel looks visibly shaken after that blow. She rings a bell putting the Dead to sleep and retreats.

In Death Ariel and Elariel summon the Gate to the Ninth Precinct. They want Evie and Muriel to wait for them in the Eighth Precinct and keep the Gate open for them. Elariel says the Dog is waiting for them, and if Elariel and Ariel cannot make it back the Dog will still come for us. Elariel indicates that we should say our goodbyes to Ariel just in case. Evie tells her to please come back. Muriel tells her to come back to us whole and human. Ariel hugs her older sisters and goes through the Gate. After awhile Ramoniel starts getting impatient. The Dog bounds out of the Gate and greets Evie enthusiastically. And then Ariel, 8 years old, steps out of the Gate. Elariel, a short chubby woman, come out of the Gate too. We all follow Elariel.

The Seventh Precinct is as we left it. A spell is cast and the steam is parted in a path to a Chaos Stone. It undulates in Death; it is a mass of tentacles that forms the shape of the Chaos Stones we have seen in life. The Abhorsens surround it and work together with their Bells. Elariel pulls Astareal and shouts at them to run for life. We hear the beginnings of the Bell as the Gate closes behind us.

In the cave Elariel's dead body opens and reveals a human corpse. Corian rushes over to see if he can help. Ariel's human form has appeared and is crying atop her old Dead body. The Dog appears out of Death and snuffles at Elariel's gear. She tells Corian to tell Evie she she'll see her later. The Dog barks in Elariel's ear and turns into a small soapstone sculpture. Elariel's eyes flutter open.

At the Abhorsen House, Corian delivers the Dog's message and hands Evie a familiar small carved soapstone figure.

All the Abhorsens are back in Life. But Evie has lost her Dog.

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Sword Beyond the Gates

When last we met our merry band of … heroes? Whatever. Jury is still out on that one. 

Anyway, we have horses that have been acquired through totally legit means as well as information about the upcoming sword deal and have returned to the ship to spend the night. We still don't know how we're going to get the sword (it is not going to happen via my mom Dominique). We spend the day discussing how to get the sword. Many plans are being discussed, should we get the sword before the deal the deal? During the deal? After the deal? Should we club the buyer or Lenariel, hide them in a closet and glamour ourselves to look like them? We also are discussing sending Corian to seduce Lenariel and then we steal the sword? (No kink shaming in this house!) 

Evie remembers that Lenarial usually travels with a small crew, typically two guards who typically carry Charter-spelled swords and wear Charter-spelled armor. She is pretty capable herself however as she is an Abhorsen also. Muriel suggests that we could drug Lenarial's lackeys, hmm good idea but how? Roxy uses her Sight to view the Lackeys and unfortunately they arrive in town and head straight to the hotel to do the deal. Damn. No drugging opportunities. However! We are thinking we can ambush them after they land their airship to avoid town police interference. Finn suggests that we start by sending one person in to try and convince her to give the sword to us before outright attaching her. Muriel then adds that we could approach her and tell her that we have a message from the Clayr and that if she goes through with selling the sword then dire consequences will befall us all. Duh duh DUHHH!!! If she still does not give up the sword then we will ambush them!! ARMBURSH THERMM

We happened to have stolen enough money to afford rooms at the hotel the buyer is staying at and decide to stay there an try to spy/gain more information about Mr. Wolfgang. Roxie get many rooms but just not quite enough and shucks Evie and Rogariel (Evans) are forced to share… oh darn ;). Sexy sexy times happen in Roxy and Dipper's room and Evie and Rogariel's room Rowr! 

That night Corian as he is just on the edge of falling asleep (likely after sexy times with Bronwyn) hears a lovely melody playing out in the street… It makes him want to take a walk and find out what the beautiful sound is… (Oh NO! The Pied Piper that is stealing all the children!) Corian follows his instincts and leaves the hotel to discover the source of the sound. He notices someone else, a young maybe 13 year old child out walking also. Corian follows him, but not too closely until he gets to the edge of town. At that point Corian tries to get the kid's attention and notices that his eyes are closed and he doesn't respond to Corian's voice. Not good. Corian grabs the kid's shoulder and stops him from going any further. Corian wakes up the kid who opens his eyes and is very startled! The kid thinks that Corian is trying to kidnap him and yells for the guards! As the guards footsteps come closer suddenly the music starts up again but is playing a different tune… after a minute the guards and the kid all collapse to the ground. Corian thinks quickly and picks up the kid and heads back into town. The sound changes again and this time Corian can't resist it and he is frozen in his tracks. He is bound and can't move. Corian tries to whisper Charter marks to afflict confusion on his pursuer and although he pulled off the spell it still doesn't seem to have an effect on them. The person seems to be old and decrepit looking, wearing rags, she (it turns out to be an elderly woman) gathers the kid up and whispers to Corian, "Someone must save the children…" The music resumes and the kid begins to sleep walk on his own again following her out of town. It isn't until the footsteps fade into the distance that Corian is released from the binding spell. Corian rushes to the edge of town again and tries to look for the old woman and the kid but they are nowhere to be found. He gives up and heads back to the hotel. 

The next morning arrives without further incident. We spend the part of the morning foraging for poisonous plants we can use, unfortunately only finding some that will cause severe stomach aches/the runs. Eh. It'll do. We spend the rest of the morning scouting around the hotel and airship site in preparation. Evie spots some good airships around that we can hide behind when Lenarial's airship arrives. Roxie finds placed around the hotel that can serve as good hiding spots for ambushes or hiding spots if we need to get away from anyone.

We get in our places and are ready when Lenarial and her two lackey's arrive and disembark their airship. Corian approaches cautiously and the guards demand him to state his business. Corian tells Lenarial that he has a message for her from the Clayr. He tells her the Clayr have seen her with a sword and warns her that they have seen negative consequences if she proceeds with selling the sword. Lenarial the Jerk only seems interested in the money and isn't interested in any negative consequences that may befall the Kingdom. Ah well we tried. Corian gives us the signal to attack!

Roxy tries to sneak up behind Lenarial, so far successful. Evie starts to provoke Lenarial to distract her attention. Finn casts a binding spell on one of the guards and it is an epic spell! However somehow the guard's armor uses all of it's Charter-spelled energy to block the spell, damn. Muriel conjures her Hamsters and somehow that also causes the other guard's armor to use up all it's Charter magic protection. Roxy continued to be The Night and snuck up behind Lenariel bound her arms to her side and puts Alacrea (her Charter-spelled boot knife) to her neck. Suddenly Lenarial is willing to Parlay saying that we found the one thing that she values over money. Roxy is sufficiently threatening and Lenarial motions to the sword at her side. Roxy calls to Evie to get the sword from Lenarial. She says that she supposes the King sent her for the sword too. Say whaaat?! The pot thickens. Apparently the King sent Romaniel to retrieve the sword and when she was taking too long he sent Lenarial. Evie asks Lenarial if she slept with the King too? Lenarial just smiled and didn't answer. Seriously what a Jerk. Evie tells the lackeys to drop their swords and remove their armor. They look at Lenarial for approval and she nods for them to follow our commands. Lenarial continues to be a total Jerk and she and Evie banter for a while. Suddenly Muriel's danger sense goes off and she says "we gotta go!" Roxy knocks out Lenarial and we jump on our horses and try to get away as fast as possible. Suddenly the ground starts rumbling and Chaos stones start erupting out of the ground! SHIT SHIT SHIT

Evie and Muriel yell at us to cover our ears as they ring their bells to try and send the dead back before they fully arise. The three Abhorsens, Evie, Muriel, and Romaniel ring their bells and delay the dead from rising! Elariel and Ariel on Evie's request send a huge flock of gore crows to the town and Corian and Dipper (riding on his bound free-magic creature that is currently a wyvern) go into town to try and scare/convince people to evacuate. We ride on to the Abhorsen's house! It takes us the rest of that day and into the night to get there. Unfortunately Elariel and Ariel cannot cross the river to the Abhorsen's house. Evie finds them a cave that can be secured for them to stay in while we are in the house. 

Ariel is very sad that we have to leave her and Elariel says to her chagrin that it is possible for them to be human again. Their bodies are just in front of the 9th Gate. Elariel says that it's not worth it to be human again but after some discussion with Evie Elariel reluctantly agrees that they can try to retrieve their bodies. She says that she knows where they are and how to bring their bodies back, after all she has done it once before. Elariel says that it was Ranna that kept their bodies there. She says that she heard (felt?) Ranna call to her and that's what kept her from crossing the final gate. Elariel also requests that Muriel and Evie go with them into Death and travel with them as far as they can but Elariel and Ariel will need to go alone into the 9th to get their bodies. 

The Plan! Muriel and Evie will travel with Roxy, Finn, Rogariel, Romaniel, and Bronwyn into the Abhorsen's house and Corian and Dipper with stay with Elariel and Ariel to protect them while they go into Death to retrieve their bodies. Muriel and Evie will then go into Death from the Abhorsen's house to meet up with Elariel and Ariel to join them on their journey. Once Elariel and Ariel return from Death they with travel with Dipper and Corian on Dipper's wyvern to get to the Abhorsen's house as fast as possible. 

THEN we will use Ytanitha (the sword we procured from Lenarial) and save the world!!

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We made a mistaaaake...
Journey thru space and time...

We broke the the glaive, and are now hurling thru space and time. Damn. Folks are throwing up, the ship is breaking, and we are fucked.

Muriel repairs the ship with ice magic well enough for us to land safely. We need to figure out where the heck we are in time. We head into town. Roxie knows folks inn town because the Night Blades do business in Ancelstaire. We find a newspaper saying that it is yesterday. Also we notice that Abhorson  are not welcome in this town.

We decide we want to prepare for Lenariel coming to town. We are going to ask around and find out about deals going down. We notice that on a bulletin board says that the town has many missing children. They all went missing in the night, many on the same night. 

Muriel goes to a local tavern and recognizes another ship captain. She begins talking to the ships crew. She is so cool. She is schmoozing and drinking (nursing a beer really…) and cool. Galindra (the captain) comes in. They go to talk in the big G's room. Muriel asks her about the sword, does she know anyone who might be interested in such a thing. G says maybe a fellow named Killian or Wolfgang. Apparently Killian doesn't like people from the old kingdom.  He also likes charter spelled artifacts. He will be in an upscale location. 

Roxie goes to chat with the Night Blades. She uses the symbol of a gore crow in lingerie to get into the secret hideout. There is more secret and weird Night Blade talk. She finds out that there is someone looking for the sword along the border of Ancelstaire. Mal has been tight-lipped about the whole thing. She also finds out that there are some Pan Pipes playing at night (probably a necromancer) and kidnapping children. Also… (geez these guys know a lot…)  the king may have been in town 2 days ago. He was in disguise (not a royal visit) and was around the airships. 

The Red Stilikin is where Killian is staying, possibly Lenoriel. We can't get the lady at the desk to tell us the whether Killian and Lenoriel are staying there. So Muriel conjures a hamster in her drink and Eviel checks the Ledger. Indeed, Killian + 1 (we think Lenoriel) in room 5.

Roxie uses her sight to try and devine something about the deal tomorrow. She sees Lenoriel meeting with Killian in his room. They both have guards. 

Muriel is going to try and get us a ship. We are going to talk to illiariel (the forsaken). She says that we can be anywhere (in life) when we go into death to destroy the chaos stones. They are at the 7th gate, surrounded by dead things. Ramoniel thinks that we should go to the  Abhorson's house, when we go into death. We will go on horseback. 

Muriel suggests she can also sabotage Lenoriel's airship. Finn is still trying to re-work the Prince's sabotage item from our trip. Roxie steals money for us to buy horses. 

And how are we going to get the sword you ask…????

 

 

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YAS KWEEN

People are paired off for the night. Finn and the King, Roxy and Dipper, Corian and Bronwyn, and… uh… the Abhorsen sisters. Evie starts research on Ganel. Finn awakes alone, but finds the King and says goodbye. King has loaned us the use of a larger airship equipped with military equipment.

We decide to start looking lower a couple miles out from the chaos stones; our agreed objective is extracting Ramonael and anyone she's with and getting out of Dodge. A couple days out, Muriel can see the Chaos stones further out, so we slow and go lower. About a mile out, the ship nosedives, the sendings seem to be taking it down hard and fast. Ahh yeah.

The extra sendings are attacking the airship as Evie wrestles for control of the wheel. Finn helps Muriel to her feet and then goes to attack one of them trying to chop the ropes, blowing it over the side. Evie yells for Corian, who scrambles up and goes to her side to analyze the charter "hacking" that seems to have occurred. Roxy draws her charter boot knife, which grows to cutlass size as she swings. Dipper jumps off with his pig/wyvern and tries to keep the airship together. Fighting breaks out around the ship and the military sendings fight to chop the ropes. Corian works on "resetting" the sendings' charter magic, which eventually works with the three remaining ones.

Roxy Sees Ramonael unconscious in a cave, and we head for the nearby mountain range. But then, looking out towards Ganel, we see an undulating mass that Ariel identifies as many dead, dissolved. Then Finn sees a group making their way towards Ganel, with Hastinean at the lead. And it looks like he's taking the free magic-infected remnants of his party with them.

We make it to a cave by following recent hunting trails through the woods, and Finn notices a glamor covering a cave entrance. We go in and see a jumpy soldier who says he and the Aborsen-in-Waiting are the only ones who got out, and Ramonael is grievously injured. Evie has to go into Death to see if she can be brought back from beyond the first gate.

Ramonael goes into Death, and the Dog appears beside her, ready to be her companion. She goes through the first gate, and makes her way around the sinkholes in the 2nd precinct, freezes the whirlpool and walks down into the 3rd precinct. She sense Ramonael's presence just ahead.  She and the dog break a chain holding Ramonael in place, and an abomination surges up to be sent away by the Walker Evie is ringing.

Ramonael and her guard, Ragarael (Captain America), call the thing in town a Grimgather, breaking bodies down and making a construct. They tried to get to an airship, but free magic woodwyrd smashed it with a tree. They ran through the woods, and the abomination holding her could only be defeated by taking her into death with it.

Ragarael pulls us aside after Ramonael goes to sleep, and says that he was here a few days before her, before the Belisaere army. He had come initially with the King, and was left to watch over things until reinforcements came. They got there, and there were no chaos stones, but the King was certain the reports couldn't have been wrong, but the stones appeared a couple of days after his leaving. Evie asks "And… who gave us the ship?" Finn gets super defensive since it's his boyfriend, super awkward. 

Ragarael thinks that since all the Abhorsens were called here, all others might be dead. Roxy sneaks away to try and See the king, but her vision gets clouded when it closes in.  We set up watch rotation and in the morning, Ragarael and Evie talk, and suspicion clouds their thoughts on the King. Finn and Corian talk, Finn is very conflicted, lets Corian know the King has a corrupted Charter mark, asks if someone with a corrupted mark retains any of themselves. Corian tells him that they can turn back, but they have to be willing to give things up in return.

We take them back to the ship and search the ship for any magical tracking items. Roxy finds a red orb in the bottom of a barrel of apples, and we examine it – seems to be the thing that broadcast the signal to hack the sendings. Finn analyzes, finds it to be a device made by the same people that make the armored sendings.

Roxy experiments with the remembrancer's mirror, finds that it goes back about 24 hours, but she can look at different places. She tries again to See the King, but her vision clouds again. She reports that the mirror only shows her a previous day. We head towards the Rift, and it gets colder and colder, and we stop at a town and find the provisioners at a church of the 9 bright shiners, and then onwards to the Rift proper. It's a huge gash in the earth, and hard to find places to climb down. We travel another day on foot, find a path that looks like it leads down into the Rift.

Ragarael's shield is pretty damn cool.

We finish descending and see the ice city in the distance. However… the ice seems to be no longer there. From a bit above it, the city is super not encased in ice. Chunks of the original huge chaos stones remain, some pieces crumbled and fallen. The buildings are mostly intact. The original Clayr's library is near the center, and some old paperwings at the edge.

Ramonael says that the two other Abhorsen corps members were left with the encampment, and maybe they found a way to break through the ice?

 

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As The Crow Flies

We stay overnight in the witches’ village.

Finn wakes up in the night because he senses someone using a massive amount of magic outside our cabin. Finn goes outside to investigate. There is a circle of The Whispered Dark on the ground and the witches are there. Herne is with them too. The witches spookily turn to look at Finn. Herne smiles at Finn and tells him to get into the circle quickly. Finn looks at his arm and sees the binding that Hadasa put on it has mostly faded. Finn hastily agrees. Herne lifts a sword and brings it down on Finn’s arm. And then Finn wakes up from the nightmare.

In the real world Finn’s arm is not doing too well. The veins have spread. Finn goes and wakes up Corian to show him. Corian attempts some of his nice Free Magic but the infection absorbs the energy. Corian does something to decrease the pain but by dawn the infection is spreading still quickly. Corian wants to go see Herne but Finn insists they bring Evie too.

They call Herne away from breakfast to talk to him. Herne says Finn’s infection shouldn’t be this bad in this short amount of time. Herne starts calling to the witches but Finn and Evie stop him. Finn asks if Herne is going to chop his arm off. Herne says of course not. But Finn and Evie are still very anxious. Herne goes to speak to the witches to arrange a ritual.

The Sisters of Whispered Darkness start to draw a circle just like in Finn’s dream. The ritual is very deva vu for Finn and he stands still when Herne beckons him into the circle. Free Magic chanting creeps everyone else out. The witches bring Herne a box that looks an awful lot like the small pyramid artifact that Evie found on the pirate ship weeks ago.

The Free Magic creature rips itself out of Finn’s arm and he screams. The creature falls into the box. Finn’s muscles are shredded on his arm; it hangs limp and useless. The witches rush forward with healing Charter Magic. They seem to replace Finn’s missing musculature with vines and leaves, binding it together in a Charter spell. The witches say his skin will grow over it in time, but for now he needs to make sure nothing interferes with the Charter magic holding it together.

We get back to Weylyn and Herne tells them off. Dipper tells us that he wants to come back with us. Dipper says he wants Roxy to show him around the mainland. 

Ariel and Evie feel death above the party. It is a Gore crow. Then a swarm chasing after the first. Muriel sounds the alarm. Evie sends dark fire at the swarm. Finn sends shooting star at the remaining swarm.

The gore crow gives Evie a message from Romaniel about trouble in Ganel. We remember the prince telling us that new chaos stones had popped up in Ganel. 

We decide to head to Ganel. We head back to Belisare  on the way to Ganel. 

Roxy meets up with Mal. She tells him that we are going to Ganel. He tells Roxy that the King is back. The rumors are true, new chaos stones have arisen. The King has called for all available abhorsens to go to Ganel. 

Muriel sneaks a Evie-disguised Finn into the castle to see the King. They are taken to different rooms than ever before, with much more security. The King is pleased to see them. And when Finn drops the glamour, the King is ecstatic. The King says he had the charges against Finn dropped in light of the dangers in Ganel. The King hasn't known who to trust. He says that people have been turned by the chaos stones and now call themselves the Lords of Chaos. This cult is trying to destroy those who worship the charter. Romaniel is missing in action. 

Finn tries to check the King's the charter mark. Muriel leaves graciously after dealing with third wheel syndrome for a moment. She goes to find Quinona. 

Finn and the King "check each other's charter marks". :) The King says he could use Finn's help running the kingdom. Yep. He's proposing. On one knee and everything. There is a kinda yes and sex, let's call it hot sex on the royal fuckin table!!!!!!

end scene. 

 

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Showdown with Sae-Oth

The only light is coming from Finn's Charter mark. Evie and Muriel feel the presence of thousands of dead welling up. Sae-Oth approaches.

We plan on destroying the sword, gauntlet, and the sunstone amulet for the ritual. The Abhorsens will try to hold off the Dead while Corian and Finn try to prep the ritual.

Evie begins by ringing Saraneth to bind Sae-Oth, but he shakes it off and keeps walking. He slams a fist into the ground and sends a wave of bones at the adventurer Abhorsen. Luckily Evie manages to dodge out of the way. Arielle screams and runs into the church. Herne plants a stick in the ground that immediately blooms into a tree of bioluminecent lights. Roxie uses the sunstone to burn Sae-Oth with light. Finn opens the box again and the Abhorsens feel the forming Dead recoil from it. Muriel also rings Saraneth and Sae-Oth only pauses briefly. Evie joins in too but the Greater Dead is not phased.

Sae-Oth brings a massive sword down on Muriel who parries with Airino, but the strength of the Greater Dead mashes the bow into her forehead. Herne slices the air next to Sae-Oth. Corian continues to build the ritual. Finn casts balefire at Sae-Oth and the light smashes into his darkness but does not seem to hurt him. Roxie creates a wall of ice but Sae-Oth just smashes through it. Bone construct undead attack us all.

Most of us get our collective posteriors kicked around while Corian works to set up the spell that will bind Sae-Oth while sacrificing Charter-spelled artifacts. We eventually get Sae-Oth into the trap and bind him. We are in rough shape. Evie sees Kibeth is unconscious and coaxes her back into soapstone form.

We head back to the portal to leave the Forest Below. We get back to the witch's hut and hear a fight happening outside. They are finishing off the bloodheart-infected witches. We ask to sleep and have our wounds tended to. Muriel is given a medicine to help her blood poisoning over a few days. The witches also give us rooms and food.

The witches kind of proposition Corian but he declines and I think we all almost died of shock. We identify some magical items.

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The Forest Below

Evie notices beyond the box is a small obelisk or gravestone. And she sees an artifact near her feet amongst the bones. It's made of wood with green Charter marks, a quarterstaff. It pulses with magic. Finn studies it further an it has an inscription that ends with "I am the oak apocalypse." Finn thinks the staff is made to knock out someone rather than killing them.

Evie wants to look at the obelisk. Evie notices a ring on a skeleton and pulls it off with an apology. She sees the mark for Kibeth circulating on it. The inscription: "Usareth, Usereth, bound by the Wallmakers, I walk in Death without fear." Evie shows us the ring; she says she thinks it's meant for her. Immediately Corian and Finn want to see it. The ring allows a non-Abhorsen to Walk in Death or bolsters the ability of an Abhorsen to do so.

The box is getting warmer as we get closer to it and there is char marks on the ground around it but no bones. Standing next to it is like standing next to a furnace. Arielle has gotten taller and spikier as we go through this bony terrain; she is picking up more pieces.

As we get closer to the obelisk we realize it's actually the steeple of a buried church. Evie immediately jumps in and goes down the stairs. Muriel hurries in behind her sister and the rest follow too.

This church is like none we have ever seen in the Old Kingdom. There is the hot metal smell of Free Magic everywhere, there are corrupted Charter marks that are writing everywhere. Evie sees the phrase "Children of Orannis" several places. Corian does not recognize the culture this church could have come from. Roxy also recognizes Asol'tha's name. We know it is a Third Kindred but we don't know what that means.

Herne tells us that the Children of Orannis are worshipers of the Third Kindred. And they are looking for the weapon that defeated Asol'tha so they can destroy the world with it. Evie asks if there's a sacrificial alter and Herne says yes, probably because "that's their style."

Finn points out that Herne and Corian's order also has their Orannis-worshipping members. Corian says that it's different.

Evie picks up a book and has Muriel look in it too. It has prayer to some bad old gods(?) and also a commandment/instructions on how to trap Sae-Oth. Apparently Sae-Oth is both Asol'tha's herald and also trying to take its power for himself. The Children of Orannis want Sae-Oth re-bound by destroying some Charter weapons (but not specific weapons). So we need to find more Charter spelled weapons.

Herne and Corian offer to stay with Evie while she continues searching the church. But we all end up staying in the church.

Evie figures out that if we close the box, we could see any Charter marks in the dark on the battlefield. But we're nervous about closing the box.

Corian makes a spell that is shaped like an egg and we follow it into the lower levels of the church. We come to an area that is blocked by a cave-in.

Roxy decides to use her Sight. She Sees Finn crafting a spell to carefully move the stones. And then through the tunnel she sees the bones of a monster dripping with black ichor and a Charter-spelled sword through its head. We're concerned that the sword is keeping Asol'tha in check – that may be Asol'tha? We decide to leave that sword (and cave-in) where it is.

We leave the church to go look for more artifacts on the battlefield. Corian finds a Charter-spelled gauntlet. Roxy picks up a small silver hand mirror that is also Charter-spelled. Finn finds an archer with a full quiver and a matching Charter-spelled bow. Evie finds an ordinary Charter-spelled sword and a large magic staff meant for spellcasting.

We head to the entrance for the church. Corian and Finn analyze shit. The gauntlet is identified by it's charter mark as Anathra, "The one who killed a star, none shall stand in my way". Quiver and Bow are identified as Endless and Ino respectively;  "Forged in fire my aim is true."  The mirror is named Kaiurn; "I looked on the first rememberancer, she blessed me with a fraction of her power. The staff is named Mayuna; "Forged in the void, let neither time nor distance stand against you". The quarter-staff is stunning … hehe… no really. It stuns, also the rings bind free magic creatures.

We spend lots of time trying to decide what to keep and what to sacrifice to bind Saygoth. We decide to sacrifice the sun stone amulet, Corian's glave, and either the gantlet or the bow (Muriel's choice). As we are deciding, we hear a loud yelp. Kibeth comes running over the horizon looking tired and bloody… coming up behind her is Saioath (a 7 ft dead creature). Evielle feels the presence of thousands of dead creatures, everyone else can hear the sounds of bones scraping together as the dead rise.

 

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