Heroes and Heroines
Live Action Roleplaying
Source: Private Tnny’brous Chiaroscuro
Priest Sweetpea – Pyramid of Light (Leader)
Druid Muffy - Groves
Wizard Big Ears – University Fire School
Wizard Mia – University Fire School
Mage Tenth – University Water School
Brother Blackadder – Mistwalkers
Private Chiaroscuro – Legion Scouts
The Protectorate High Council received a message that the Emerald Court, wished to open diplomatic communications with us. The Emerald Court is part of the Fae Courts in Enchantica. The Fae courts have grown over the past few years to occupy the Enchantican territories lost by the Enchanticans and the Witcheries.
We have had recent missions which interacted with some of these forces, however since significant changes within the Fae Courts a few years ago we have had no up to date intelligence as to their current format.
We were tasked with opening diplomatic talks with Lord Temperance of the Emerald Court, and with any of the other Courts (such as the Diamond, Amethyst or Ruby Courts) that would be willing to.
We were instructed to undertake any reasonable requests to facilitate the start of diplomatic overtures.
Finally we were instructed to find out more about the make up of the Fae, their leadership and their society.
We teleported to the edge of the Fae Forrest. Some of the magical constructs we met initially were powerful and we were forced to use the majority of our elixirs in just one skirmish.
We then met with a Fae with a musical instrument naming himself Oleander Quickwing told us that he was part of the Emerald Court and would take us safely to Lord Temperance. We only needed to step through a magical gateway…
This Fae turned out to be lying; the portal transported us into what we later discovered to be a magical pocket plane construct which was supposed to allow the visitors to enact a story but had been co-opted by the Ruby Court to set us up and kill us.
The story we had to work through is largely irrelevant to the outcome of the mission; however, I have included some details below due the lethal nature of the engagements.
It was the story of some students from an unnamed university who went digging for a relic called the Necronomicon Ex Mortis. The archaeologists dressed and looked just like the Emerald Empire, although they did not know of that country.
We initially arrived at a building where an avatar of necromancy had sacrificed lives to raise undead creatures which Sweetpea named Unranked Deadites.
The next morning as we understood it, events of the previous night appeared to have rewound themselves and it seemed that it was up to us to prevent the avatar from being created by stopping the woman, Mavis from reading from the book.
While we succeeded in this a different horror was created that night – the brother, Ash died and was created as a monstrous evil avatar with a powerful sword wielding arm which was the only part that could be injured. When we cut it off it was replaced by an even more terrifying beweaponed appendage that cried with the sound of a hundred trees being chopped down. It was a many toothed blade that revolved and could sever a person in two.
Eventually Sweetpea faced this horror down and cut this weapon from the avatar’s arm.
The item, like the pages of the book we recovered dissipated in the morning; and again the events that appeared to have occurred the previous day were reset.
Ultimately, we were able to defeat the process by using a wholly collected book on the necromantic avatar. The story being arbitrary in its nature meant that this apparently concluded the process. It appeared to be the product of a deranged mind regardless.
Druid Muffy should be commended at this stage for her holding action against overwhelming forces, she lost spirit strength as a result of this battle, real or otherwise – saving many group members.
Mission outcome was additionally influenced largely due to our interaction with an ex-Auxiliary named Kurrains.
Hero High-Priest Drake briefed us that we might encounter him or his forces in the Fae forest and the view was that Kurrains should be brought back in any state feasible.
This group’s initial interaction with the King in Yellow cult was to interrupt a ritual on the instructions of the Fae, Quickwing.
It was only happenstance that Wizard Mia was able to knock out the leader of the cultist ritual leader, which we subsequently questioned.
The Priest revealed that he was real and had come to this ‘pocket plane’ on the instructions of High Priest Kurrains to break the ‘construct plane’ and return us all to the real.
The Priest consulted with Kurrains by means of a ritual and instructed that Kurrains would come into the plane himself and that they would continue to attempt to break the plane, but required assistance.
We later assisted with a ritual conducted by Kurrains to break the plane with partial success.
We learnt that this King in Yellow appears to be an ancient being or force which pre-dates the creation of this world.
It would seem that it is not physically tied to this plane nor world as its medium is that of dreams, operating on our physical plane through agents and influencers such as Kurrains.
Some of these agents would appear to be mentally different to what our ordered society would consider normal.
I would observe that there is likely a balance to the numbers of agents which are attracted to this cult due to their mental states; but also, the cult likely seeks out agents with sympathetic mental states to it.
The latter appears to be the recruitment process that Kurrains went through.
While the overall actions of the King in Yellow appear to be at times highly chaotic, there is an underlying guiding order and structure to it. There are goals and outcomes it seeks, it is simply the process to achieve these would appear chaotic as we do not understand its alien methodology.
We were unable to uncover the King in Yellow’s interest in Enchantica or the Fae Court; indeed it was revealed that the King in Yellow’s interest in our world had all but waned until fairly recently.
We have opportunity to find out more through increased communication with Kurrains.
See also my final evaluation, below.
Kurrains proved to be useful support on our endeavour to unravel the story of the plane, working well with our group.
Kurrains later revealed that he had recovered from an illness that was part of his mind. That, years earlier he had acquired a dark part of mind that had influenced his more reasonable actions, which in turn lead to him being sealed away on the plane of darkness for years. This had impacted on this dark passenger, allowing it to grow and affect Kurrains actions.
It was only the defection to the ‘Court’ of the King in Yellow that had allowed Kurrains the ability to ultimately and recently overcome this dark passenger.
Kurrains cites his masochistic tendencies and the torture he received in correctional attempts as the reason he became who he was. Tendencies that are now under control.
Kurrains has claimed that he no longer wishes to take lives, the chain wards on his arms, put there by the King in Yellow not only reduce his likeliness to commit crime, but also a surety that if he transgresses, they will be forever show as broken.
Were that others might be judged thus.
Kurrains also willingly gave up his ‘Talisman’ as High Priest of the King in Yellow each time he spoke with us and further would yield this unless he were to be assigned to a mission as an Auxiliary once more.
While I do not understand the context of this man’s history; in this context Kurrains has proved a valuable ally and source of information. It is clear that he did not have to force his way into the pocket plane to rescue us, and while he is ultimately operating on the King in Yellow’s behalf; there appears to be personal reasons for assisting us.
As I reported, we were tricked into entering the pocket plane by a high-ranking member of the Ruby Court of the Fae. Oleander Quickwing.
Our ignorance of the structure of the Courts should be addressed as soon as possible.
While within the pocket plane, Quickwing appeared to us to lead us down false trails or objectives to confuse the direction we should take in escaping the plane.
Each time he disappeared, however he left behind letters or notes; these implicated the actions of the Ruby Court to cause a rift both between the Amethyst Court and the Emerald Court, and that of the Protectorate. According to the missives from their leader, Sidheim Contomacious, they greatly fear an alliance.
(Wizard Tenth has further details of these letters)
Again it is unclear if these letters were intentionally left behind which suggests further complications; or, if this Quickwing was simply that incompetent. Another interpretation was that in fact the plane was working against the changes wrought upon it by Quickwing and the Ruby Court – it was later explained that the plane itself was a semi-intelligent construct designed to fulfil Fae whims in story form, but in a non-lethal context.
Quickwing confronted us within the plane once we were making headway in our escape; his forces were varied in nature including Dwarves and strange amalgams of living creatures or plants.
This time, however he did not have his musical instrument and could not quickly escape. Although he wielded a powerful magical weapon, I quickly overpowered and killed him.
We recovered the ruby necklace he wore, which all members of the Fae courts do, reflective of their Court. The pendant was magically trapped and nearly blew Tenth’s arm off when he touched it, this being fair warning for any other Auxiliary group in a similar situation.
After we escaped the plane we managed to meet with a representative from the Emerald Court.
This was Axis Oakfather; who had no knowledge of the invitation to the Protectorate regarding diplomatic overtures.
Oakfather listened to our report of the past few days and had some knowledge of the pocket plane and was able to explain its true purpose.
Oakfather was particularly interested in the tale of the Oleander Quickwing and let slip that the Fae are able to imbue parts of the souls into physical objects – that Quickwing had likely done this with his magical mandolin. Therefore, we likely haven’t heard the last from him.
Oakfather bargained for our safety overnight in return for a chance to examine the pendant.
The next day he brought the Seneschal to the Amethyst Court, Lavender Darkfeather to meet us, given that the allegations were that the Ruby Court were setting up the Emerald Court against the Amethyst Court, this appeared a wise action.
Between these two Fae we learned more regarding the makeup of the Fae Courts, that there are indeed five courts:
Emerald, Ruby, Amethyst, Diamond and Sapphire.
The title for first ‘Lord’ is Sidheim – this title appears more akin to a King, but of an extended family of similar minded Fae.
My interpretation was that the different courts may have different areas of specialisations within their own lands.
That the Ruby Court is widely considered the very less stable of them, even by their own standards they admitted.
The Ruby Court apparently are staunchly purists about Fae and who they should ally with; however in direct conflict with this position they have interbred with wild animals and all manner of strange creatures.
I took from this meeting that we should likely find out more about the Ruby Court from somewhat less biased sources, but the above is a good starting point.
Despite the fact that the invitation to meet with Lord (Sidheim) Temperance was a fabrication by the Ruby Court; our actions opened the door to better relations with at least the Emerald and Amethyst Courts.
We negotiated diplomatic exchange, to give us the chance to send a more formal delegation to the Courts.
That we would be allowed to travel to an area set aside to better contact the Courts.
We stated that we would like to pursue the opportunity for the Protectorate to send a more permanent representative in the future, and that we would happily receive one from the Courts in our land should they wish to send one.
The representatives were both apologetic for what had happened to us, and, open to our diplomatic overtures per our mission outline.
Within the pocket plane we later encountered what appeared to be members of the nation of Malice; however we never managed to verify whether this was a product of the pocket plane or, an indication of alliance between the Fae Ruby Court and Malice.
Tactically we struggled with the nature of our main healers also being our best front-line fighters. The Magic Users of the group worked extremely well in a magic rich environment and kept us free of negative effects.
I swapped my usual role of scouting to a more skirmishing role with front line support, leaving our Mistwalker to take on scouting.
It is my evaluation that while a dedicated healer may have meant no loss of spiritual strength, once we gained our stride the group was effective.
Upon the dissolving of the pocket plane, we were left with physical manifestations of permanent items we had collected during our time there. This included two artefact type items.
The toothed sword which emanated both spiritual and magical energies. This ‘Chainsword’ also required a substance described by Ash as Peatroll; something the University may be aware of.
A ‘Boomstick’, a type of wand which fires physical magic missile like projectiles these were able to kill any deadite in just one strike.
While we did not return to Shadyvale Keep with Kurrains, we understand that it was his intent to return.
By my hand
Private Tnny’brous Chiaroscuro of House Barra Yvalm