Friday, February 24, 2017

The Quarry's Call

The Slayer
Kascar the hunter was broken from his pondering by a sudden clamor that echoed off the cliffs and slopes, a ghostly sound he would later describe as serendipity, and carefully crept from the mouth of the cave to an area of shadow behind a natural cleft in the ridge and peered over the edge. All thoughts of the nightmare were gone; his mind clear with deadly focus. 

Below, almost two hundred feet down and to the north was a group of five individuals Kascar did not immediately recognize traveling a snow patched path. He reached for his spy glass, one of his many tools he employed when tracking a quarry and held it over his eye.

A group of Zhents had stopped to examine something in the road but then recognition struck the hunter, Kascar focused on an absurdly laughing individual and cursed the air for not having his crossbow within reach. Trebek Vason. Red filled the hunter’s perceptions threatening to cloud his judgment when Kascar heard his traveling companion, a slayer and also a former ranger, come up beside him.

Kaskar handed the spy glass to his companion as he silently turned back to the cave and thoughts of the nightmare and the skeleton hand. Wordlessly the hunter and the slayer gathered their camp, as they have done countless times before, and tracked the sorcerer and the Zhents back to the Citadel of the Raven. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

02/15/17 Zhents 1 & 2: Events Up To Now

The game begins with the character’s separated but soon brought together before a sickened Dorsha who says she has set plans in motion that involve your five characters; the first will be to retrieve masterwork weapons she has arranged for everyone from Brisbane, one half of the Brothers of the Forge in Bridgeton.

Meeting with Brisbane, your characters find a restored Cambolton who has promised his healer a suit of masterwork armor forged from Silverell (a heavily regulated elven mithril ‘grown’ by the elves of Hillsfar). After issuing your characters weapons you were asked to secretly retrieve the elven mithril from Grafton, the Citadel’s grand mason.

Sometime in the afternoon, your characters enter the mines and meet Grafton, a man well to do for his station, and learn that to obtain the metal he must have the Urdunnir dwarves retrieved, stone adepts who have unfortunately wandered to close to the deep druids territory for Grafton.

After some bartering your characters agreed to the task and eventually rescued the woman Glinda from a shambling mound and certain death, evaded other unseen threats, and eventually came upon Dameron the reclusive deep druid who was using the Urdunnir to carve out new areas for his thriving colony of myconids. Dameron released the dwarves and gave your characters raw fungus components for personal use and some as a delivery to Ampherd Nanther.

Delivering the Urdunnir to Grafton was easy as was the dwarves’ retrieval of the Silverell from the stone and into your character’s possession. Your characters emerge from the mines late in the afternoon and return to Bridgeton to find Cambolton busy measuring the human specimen Braidwood  who was accompanied by Arton Delmis and Audry Lanchester. Brisbane thanked your characters and promised oils for your weapons on the morrow.

After, your characters spent some time in Bridgeton watching as Guthbert Golthammer and his entourage arrive from the long road, spending a portion of the evening at the Copper Calf, and even identifying Tinderbox as both Glinda’s rapist and a spy.

560 xp. The next morning your characters travel to Greyskull where the Magisters of the Citadel reside along with their slaves and apprentices. Here your characters meet with Ampherd Nanther who lkes your moxie and your methods for getting things done and offers your characters a task. His plans for his father’s nameday have fallen through and asks you to find the presumed peryton nest in the area and retrieve all eggs in exchange for potions and the possibility of more work. While Ampherd does not know where the nest is, he does advise that Velmarius has a small observatory and could be used to scan the surrounding peaks.

Traveling from Greyskull to Oracodel’s Tower your characters meet Velmarius who is working on a new calendar and tracking new movements in the solar system. After a time your characters believe you have found the nest, a watchtower a couple of hours away. Troys character is able to consult his books on the perytons to some degree and learn that the only way to harm the perytons are with magical weapons.

With magical oils promised for the new weapons your characters travel to Bridgeton and Brisbane for magical oils which is where we pick up next game session. Note: obviously there is a lot of character interaction that was omitted to save time, but this is the general review of how you got where you are now.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Two Weeks Ago

The sack of leaves was at least two feet long, a foot wide and bulging with content. Trebek slumped at his workbench realizing the enormity of the task that had been assigned to him by his angry superiors.   Trebek’s punishment was to process the rare tea leaves into a fine powder, a precise process that would consume the young wizard’s time for several days. Spellcasters in Hawkehelm could use the powder in place of the very fine sands required for casting of the Sleep spell, a spell Trebek had used just yesterday.   “Pennance really,” thought Trebek, smiling at the memory of the bully guardsman collapsing face first into the piss pit, “How was I to realize he was Rutledge’s brother?”

Nash Guardsman, Brother of Rutledge

Monday, February 20, 2017

Kascar the Hunter

The Hunter sat up suddenly awake; another nightmare accompanied by a cold breeze had once again limited his sleep to a few hours.  Staying quiet, the Hunter allowed his senses to probe the cave he was resting in.  Not finding an active threat he got to his feet and struck the small campsite inside the cliff cave.  

The ranger formerly known as Kascar was once again in the midst of a panic attack, brought on by the memories of his nightmare.  The Hunter’s problem was his nightmare had actually happened, his nightmarish dreams replaying the events that had occurred several weeks ago. 

The Hunter struggled to the mouth of the cave, trying to fight off a wave of nervous shivering and focus on the beachhead below the cliff-side cave.  His thoughts would not let him, the memory of the skeletal hand and its horrible touch upon his forehead had changed his life forever.   Upon receiving the Master’s touch, Kascar was risen the Hunter.   As the torments of sleep left the Hunter his focus returned his thoughts to his mission.  He would locate this “wizard” Trebek Vason and hopefully end the master’s grip upon his will. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Copper Calf

The Copper Calf Tavern and Skewers
Situated at the midpoint of Bridgeton overlooking Whitefield Valley is one of Mazlow’s earliest endeavors- an ivy covered, multi-storied building of rich aromas, warm tones and beautiful maidens. The Copper Calf originally started as a clockwork brewery and distillery for Bridgeton; crafting such libations as Hunter’s Call, a stout bitter brew, the Counterspell, and the titular Copper Calf which is a tarnished syrupy liquor with actual copper shavings in the drink; the Copper Calf gets its name from the clockwork calf that stands at the entrance and has grown into one of the most popular establishments in Bridgeton. 

The main floor is the Copper Calf Tavern and Skewers where off duty Zhentish soldiers can drink and eat grilled skewered beef and gourds served on a long wooden skewer. Glinda, along with six other comely waitresses each dressed in lederhosen, maintain a tradition of dipping the tips of their braids in molten copper before their shift of tending to the drinking needs of grim warriors and strange alchemists. Games of chance are often to be had among patrons as well as a warm place to catch news from area castles, some coming as far away as Burmstone. Allerton Bendatio is the no nonsense Brewmaster and bouncer who hold two brawler titles and is rumored to have mysterious ties to the Zhentarim.

On the second level, a small hunting lodge called the Heartsmen because of their reputation of their admired heart-shot made with each kill from their deadly crossbows, hold regular meetings with their new huntsmaster Ozland. The Heartsmen are currently celebrating its ten year anniversary with a weekend long hunt for the vile trolls. A tin suit of armor was made by Cambolton across the street of Bridgeton to commemorate the anniversary. Over the years the lodge has supplied the copper calf with its supply of foodstuffs and has collected many trophies including a brown bear's head and rack, a winter wolf, and a peryton, one of the most feared aerial predators of the mountains.  

The third level, teams of leathers workers fashion skins from the Heartmen's kills into serviceable items for Bridgeton while the forth level is a large open room commonly used for storage or the occasional common bunk room. The roof serves as one of the watchtowers of Bridgeton, manned by the local brute squad who are taught to watch for aerial threats including the telltale shadow of the perytons. 

Monday, February 13, 2017

Party Disguise

Istaleus overheard Elazarin Nanther after the most recent meeting of the Council of Magisters and after one of his lengthy self praises, making mention of his upcoming name-day celebration. Oh, how the old man went on about who was coming Istaleus thought; naming the individuals he knew to be traveling all the way to the Citadel of the Raven for his nameday. It was hard to stomach to the old man, but Istaleus listened intently trying hard not to be noticed.

There had to be something else, it was no secret Elazarin Nanther was not well liked among his peers, but the Magister of Potions was loquacious when deep in his cups and let slip something special was arriving on Hearthyard’s slave wagons, a book of alchemical formula. Meanwhile Istaleus was not the only one interested in what Elazarin was eluding to, his son Ampherd too was hiding his own interest in what was being said.

So a few days later Istaleus enlisted a Dylan, a colleague of his understudy's to watch, wait, and see. And after Dylan returned and described what he saw to the Ink Mage, Istaleus showed the young knifemaster several images; circular stencils common to house banners, church sects, and merchant crates. Dylan identified several symbols branded into the small crates that were secreted under Heathyard’s slave wagons; Istaleus thought about what Dylan’s information could portend, but as busy as Istaleus is he could still read the intrigue like ink drops in kettle.
Elazarin Nanther
The first symbol was a horn, a device commonly used by House Malagar. As Istaleus remembers, Malagar was a foremost family in Zhentil Keep that gained renown in the High House of the Hunt by hosting several of the most prestigious hunts of the land from the past decade. Despite the church’s chaotic nature the faith appealed to survivalists and those who thrive on the thrill of the hunt. The second sigil identified was not a house symbol or mercantile brand that Istaleus recognized but a character commonly used in alchemy referring to the human condition or perhaps the human soul. There was a second unknown symbol featuring an upraised fist grasping a lightning bolt upon one of the secret crates, but on the final box Dylan clearly saw was what he described as a scribe’s take on the traditional symbol of Bane, a black hand superimposed over an open tome encircled within a thick black ring. Dylan furthermore said there was a many as ten similar sized crates seen before he risked discovery.

Elazarin Nanther’s nameday? the Ink Mage mused. If that were true then Istaleus should give up his aspirations on becoming the Grand Magister. No, this nameday celebration was a disguise for something else and Istaleus was very curious about it all. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

For This Game

Revised notes and guidelines for this game: 

20 point character ability build, medium experience progression. 
Climb and Swim = Athletics (STR); *any finesse or expertise feat will change the Athletics skill to DEX based at the players option.
No disadvantages may be taken.
Only two potions may be imbibed in a turn that provokes an attack of opportunity as normal regardless of any extra actions a character may possess unless it specifically states a potion may be imbibed. 
Less than fully charged wands are allowed as are alchemical power components
Don’t request or attempt something that you as DM would not allow. 
Luck Check: half character level rounded down plus any mythic tier(s) or other luck modifiers. 
All characters must spend one rank in at least one craft skill at character creation, characters receive this rank for free. 
Starting equipment: applicable adventuring kit, cold weather outfit, one simple medium sized melee or ranged weapon, two small sized weapons, light armor with optional buckler shield. 
Starting gold: your class die roll, reroll 1’s. 
Sanity Score: Your sanity score is equal to the sum of your mental ability scores (Charisma, Intelligence, and Wisdom) minus any ability damage taken to those ability scores. 
Sanity Threshold: Your sanity threshold is equal to the bonus of your highest mental ability score minus any ability damage to that score (minimum 0). When you experience a sanity attack, if the sanity damage from that attack equals or exceeds your sanity threshold, you gain a madness (see page 182), either lesser or greater depending on the relation of your current sanity damage and your sanity edge (see below). If your sanity threshold is 0, you always suffer a madness upon taking 1 or more points of sanity damage.
Sanity Edge: Your sanity edge is equal to 1/2 your sanity score. When you experience a sanity attack that causes you to gain a madness (see Sanity Threshold above), compare your total amount of sanity damage to your edge to determine the potency of the madness. If your current sanity damage is less than your sanity edge, then you manifest a lesser madness. If your current sanity damage is equal to or greater than your sanity edge, you manifest a greater madness instead. More information on madness, both greater and lesser, can be found on page 182. Furthermore, when you accrue total sanity damage equal to or greater than your edge, any dormant lesser madnesses you have manifest again.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

People of Note

Ampherd Nanther
Ampherd Nanther: brilliant alchemist; the self-consumed and talkative (some even say spoiled) son of Elazarin Nanther. He claims to have many contacts. 
Arton Delmis: not much is known of this one other than he has recently arrived from Mulmaster with a woman of great beauty who some say smells like blue summer. 
Audry Lanchester
Augustus Ramsey: one of Halaster’s myrmidons and Lucas and Dylan's martial trainer who traveled to the Citadel of the Raven from Zhentil Keep. 
Aurora Tenloss: Sembian mercantile heiress, also recently arrived.
Beaumont: Archivist of Hawkehelm, curator, and a man of academic pursuits. He has been very busy lately.
Braidwood: previously unknown young prodigy in the new Ministry. Some say he was groomed by the Ministry to be a antipaladin or war priest; a symbol of divine man. 
Brisbane Bruil: one of two master smiths in Bridgeton, Brothers of the Forge, arrangements trading with miners and bartering metal has agreed craft masterwork weapons for those who wield them.
Brouse Tremlor: Old strifelord from the church of Bane, acting vicar, and ranking Ministry castellan at the Citadel.
Brodnax: mysterious contact who, for the right price, will lead interested parties to the black market in Bridgeton.
Cambolton Bruil: master armorer in Bridgeton, the second brother of the forge who has been sick for some time. Both brothers carry burns common among smiths.
Caval Daoran: Reeve of Castle Hawkhelm, currently investigating the appearance of sacrilegious images and forbidden symbols around the Keep.
Dameron: a reclusive deep druid with no people skills, pale, stringy hair with mismatched eyes.
Dorsha Quantor: harrower and Librarian initiate; a motherly figure for many (if not all) of you.
Elazarin Nanther - dead
Elazarin Nanther: dead- traditional alchemist and former Magister of Potions, clothing covers his entire body. You know him to be crass and old beyond years- he is not very well liked. 
Flamulder Dinath Thuldoum or ‘Mulder’: Hawkehelm's lore warden; a veteran warrior and scholar. Grafton: grand mason, and old engineer; he leads several teams of miners. Walks with a slight limp.
Heathyard: Zhentarim orog handler who leads teams that lure these huge humanoids for the
Zhentarim ranks.
Hess: tengu male, quiet and observant; warning Dylan that excessive use of the shadowtongue will draw unwanted attention from the shadow plane. 
Ilthond: Zhentarim wizard, commander of assets in Dagger Dale who has family ties in Hawkehelm. 
Istaleus: Magister of Scrolls (ink mage) and tattoo spell artist with stained and blotchy skin. Master of the Scriptorium, he is incessantly busy developing inks and filing orders. Deals with a lot of folk outside the Zhentarim and outside the Citadel. 
Kandar Milinal: blackguard, and high commander of the Zhentish forces at Castle Hawkehelm.
Manshoon: founder and mage-general of the Zhentarim.  
Maskul Mirrormane: ranking Black Adept at the Seminary of Adepts
Mazlow: governor of Bridgeton, very charismatic and gregarious. Very pleased to make your acquaintance. 
Ringult Hornhelm: southern merchant and a new face to Bridgeton; very unlike the human stock of the Moonsea. Wears odd sandals and bears a strange odor.
Rutledge: Zhentarim Sergeant commander of signal towers of Hawkehelm. Strict and regimented. 
Rylestrum: venerable librarian and occult medium, he is also blind but ornery as ever. Claims to know the Tesseract quite well.
Tedric Vexx
Tedric Vexx: Magister of the Cloak, manipulative and cunning- Tedric Vexx's influence reaches beyond Castle Greyskull to many of the other castles that comprise the Citadel of the Raven. 
Velmarius: an old iounmancer and astrologist with a small observatory, a bit of a worrier for many; he is nevertheless an expert in his field.
Zelda Leiyraghon: Magister of Wands, the easily distracted and demure Zelda hails from Melvaunt where her family holds tenuous power under the Nanther Clan. 

Hawkehelm and Bridgeton

Hawkehelm Castle, military stronghold of the Zhentarim and counterpart to Darkhold, it was one of the many strongholds erected during the Great Building, and is connected to the other castles by way of Coldbrook Bridge. The acting high commander at Hawkehelm is Kandar Milinal, a veteran Blackguard who rules the dark stone castle through his loyal chain of command.

Bridgeton, built precariously on an abandoned bridge left behind during the Great Building, it is a long thoroughfare of honkytonks and walk up bars, common rooms and tenements, fight clubs and herbalists; populated by refugees and old folk, and frequented by soldiers and gypsies with connections in strange places. Life is generally relaxed here, governed by a man named Mazlow and his brute squad, Bridgeton has become a leisure downtime gem for the soldiers of the Zhentarim. 

Monday, February 6, 2017

Reflected In The Moonsea

From the Tenants of Seven Ministry Scrolls: There is no race greater than the human race.

The Moonsea is replete in resources from its mineral rich waters descended from the blue-white glaciers from the north; exotic inks and dies that are favored among nobility around the Realms, to its delectable seafood that feed the coastal cities. The Moonsea is fed from the great glacier and from the snowcapped mountains that cradle the landlocked Moonsea; it in turn, feeds the Dragon Reach and the Sea of Fallen Stars to the south.

The cities around the Moonsea were once independent city-states ruled by warlords, dictators or mageocracies; however, all that changed eighteen months ago with the godsfall. 

It was a time when devils laughed and angels wept; churches, once bastions of faith, shattered as common people from across the realms took on aspects of divine beings; however, if the godsfall taught humanity anything, it is that the gods are not infallible.

In Zhentil Keep the godsfall was followed by a great inquisition; a refocusing of the religious culture into what is now known today as the Ministry. Here in Zhentil Keep the Ministry is all powerful; it creates and enforces laws, grants titles, and declares war; it appoints civic leaders, and mandates worship; however, like with any religious institution, it is not without heretics. It is an age of romance for humanity.

Peace is a Lie, there is only passion. Through passion one gains strength. Through strength, one gains power. Through power, one gains victory. Through victory, our enemies are broken.

North-west of Zhentil Keep is the Citadel of the Raven; a ten mile span of stout castles and soaring fortresses, some lost and forgotten, linked together by cables, tunnels, and centuries old bridges along the cold Dragonspine Mountains.

To the outside world who knew of the Citadel of the Raven, it is dedicated to reforming high-born criminals into productive members of society and an institution for domestication.

When in fact the Citadel of the Raven is occupied by an alliance from each of the major Moonsea cities to protect the region form the dangers of the north, but the Zhentarim have the greatest presence here. In the Zhentarim like other military structures there is no expression or individualism there is only conformity and order.

Some of the castles include Fellraven Keep, occupied by ancientand dark tengu, an ancient race of black humanoid avians, once the Assassin Lord’s slave race, deadly enough to defeat a dragon when one threatened the Citadel; Hawkhelm Castle, where much of the inner Zhentarim operations are held; Bishop’s Keep is widely concidered the religious center, and the other two are Warsle Castle, a lofty and isolated castle; and Greyskull where the Magisters of Melvaunt hold palaver. Not to be forgotten is Bridgeton, not a castle but a small town, where many Zhentarim soldiers go on leave.

You have all kept your abilities to yourself but as word filters in that Zhentarim and Ministry leaders have recently arrived to the Citadel and with more on the way; it may be time to make an impression or show people what you can do. You just have some unfinished business before making your mark, whatever that may be…

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Hierarchy of Hate

The Black Door at the Cathedral of the Altar had a deep history and stood a miracle for those of the faith as both the pinnacle of craftsmanship of divine man, and a symbol of the strength and endurance as taught by the Seven Edict Scrolls of the Ministry.
High Precept
The Black Door is made of thick blackened ghost wood banded together by thick iron bands set in stone that is beaten and worn but as strong as the day it was constructed; it was heavily stylized with a shield and gauntlet motif. Church history states the Black Door stood as the inner sanctuary entrance for clerics and priests for several churches in Zhentil Keep’s early history before being brought here in the great Cathedral of the Altar. 

The High Precept regarded himself in a grand silver mirror, it too was in the shape of a shield, as his studious acolyte straightened the lines and folds of the Precept’s robes and blessed chasuble. The High Precept was a stark man with intense eyes, a sublime disposition, and few words. He was old but his skin lacked the lines of many men half his age, he too also had raven black hair; a prized human trait.

Beyond the Black Door waited scores of supplicants who had come seeking indulgences from the Ministry, the High Precept could hear them, smell their filth and turned hastily to a wine glass to wash cleanse his palate catching the acolyte off guard. And when the glass was emptied, the acolyte dutifully refilled the goblet.

A man offering half his betrothed’s dowry to the Ministry to sanction his marriage to his sixth concurrent wife; a woman seeking an indulgence for her sins with a song; even clergymen under the Ministry’s pantheon wishing to better their rank by appealing to the higher gods of the Cathedral’s Altar Bishops. They would wait; today the High Precept expected…

A figure knocked curtly on the Black Door and entered the Precept's sanctuary casting a grim shadow on the acolyte from the high shield shaped stained glass window set in the stone wall, it was the Ministry's Arsenal Chaplin. The acolyte, after seeing the new guest, knew his place was to leave.
The Chaplin

The Chaplin was tall with black hair and a back goatee; he walked with the diligence of a soldier and had the commanding voice of a battled tested orator. While waiting for the acolyte to leave, the newcomer helped himself to a goblet of wine and drank deeply, red lines of wine spilled down his chin. A cloud outside dimmed what meager sunlight there was.  

“I have narrowed it down to three.” The Chaplin said after wiping his neck and catching his breath after a long quaff.

The Precept remained silent in his thoughts but he was alert to this news and how it fit with the larger plans for holy conquest.  

Handing the High Precept a scroll, the Chaplin continued, “These three merchants should offer the Ministry a fair assessment of our assets from the Inquisition and the Librarians at the Citadel of the Raven will add their expertise as well.”

“You know I do not like dealing with the Librarians.” The High Precept said with a dry cracked voice.

“They are necessary, as you well know. Their work in occultism was a boon for the Zhentarim and by extension the Ministry.”

The High Precept seemed to concede the point, “What about the remaining churches? They understand their new position in the Ministry and the hierarchy set forth by the Tenants?”
Black Cloak

“Unknown at this time.” The tall Chaplin replied. “But I expect Inquisitors Ginali and Darkhoon have done their job in those cities and will deliver their assets to the Citadel by the appointed date.”

“Have you heard any news of the Black Cloak?” the High Precept asked changing the subject to something more personal.

The Chaplin’s face changed, “None since when Hillsfar fell, when he drove out the elves- none since the godsfall,” The tall man knew of course whom the High Precept was speaking.

“What's strange is, there are reports indicating signs of his handiwork,” the Chaplin paused for a drink before continuing. “troop deployments in Dagger Dale, agents in Cormanthor, and of course we have the soul gem from Hillfar- but no confirmed sightings or contacts.”

The High Precept looked from the Chaplin, framed by the Black Door, to the stained glass window high above, “Could be that there is a clone we are not aware of?”

Friday, February 3, 2017

Kings-Men 9: A Climatic Ending

This week we catch up with our characters moments after Raghnall disables the mechanical lock and in a moment of inspiration Egol freely walks into the monastery, and as the war priest walks past Raghnal, the rogue uses his skill to emulate what was needed to also pass into Vicklow.

Inside the monastery the two are immediately surrounded by magical darkness, and then a spirit appears surrounded by a nimbus the same color as the mythal-barrier that protects this place against intrusion. The spirit expresses curiosity toward Raghnal but recedes to its normal state after assessing our presence holds no threat. It even told us where the Book of Life was.

Outside the other characters attempted to access Vicklow leaving behind Ace who, while invisible would hold off the three wyverns that took flight just as Egol and Raghnall entered the monastery.

Inside our characters (sans Ace) would descend to the crypts to find a golden pyramid in the center of the crypts and the soul stone that gives the mythal its power.

Outside Ace flees from the wyverns, including a mythic wyvern that was a mix of blue dragon; finding their lair in the process.

Inside the other characters find and open the vault and relieve it of its burdens: A cavalier’s banner, philosopher's Stone, Talisman of Pure Good, Helm of Many Eyes, Green Orb of Dragonkind, Scarab of Unlife, and “Brightdeath” a Holy Avenger.

Outside Vicklow Ace, running, scrambling, flying, eventually fell to a blast of lightening breath. The rest of our characters emerge from Vicklow to see the blue wyvern take the unconscious Ace back to the wyvern lair. Our character give chase and are able to surprise the three wyverns saving Ace, finding the remains of Sir Baconridge, his sword and the King’s men disks, as well as some other treasure: two 2nd level wands 3CL, Rod of Wonder, +3 weapon, +1 SA, and a Belt of Hurling, lesser.

We were awarded 2,200 xp and 1 mythic trial.

Epilogue: A few days later our characters arrive in Caer Leon to much celebration; Ace would reveal his reason for his cart- adding to the festivities with items collected in our travels; and to find both baronies reclaimed by the McClaines. Our story is told and we are given new orders; as Major Garrett intends to return to Hedeby our task is to escort Father Benetto and the Book of Life to the Capitol city.