So, this week on the Anduwin Chronicles…
From the cliff top they group set off toward the Temple of Vollabuke. On route Journ’ee lights torches, and Sivaras shapes the rain water away from her allies. From the darkness, Sivaras is shot in the side, halfling her health as the bold sticks into flesh beneath her rib. 428 grabs her, pulling her out of the firing line and Brant starts running for cover. Granuaile takes out her shield, and instructs the party to flee. Journ’ee and Julio stay with Granuaile, but Julio is shot. 428 arrives in a cavern for cover full of columns of stone which have been crudely carved. The other party members catch up. Bullets continue to fly by and strike the stone pillars creating broken stone scrapnel with each shot. Brant recognises the impact as similar to the ballistics the Greyborn soldiers use. From cover, the Temple is visible around half an hour away. Journ’ee takes three torches, ignites them and casts magik to create three illusionary duplicates of himself. He runs off with three duplicates each holding three torches to draw the attention of the attacking riflemen and archers. One mirror image disappears as a bullet flies through and Journ’ee is missed by the firey balistic, the rest of the party moves towards the temple. Brant slinks ahead utilizing the shadows to give him more cover as he draws from his years of spy training. 428 runs full speed, and Granuaile mounts Julio and rides towards the temple. Sivaras follows and continues to use her hydromancy to freeze increments of water as walls between the pillars as she walks to try to slow down the ballistics, creating impromptu defensive barriers. Journ’ee takes cover and hides wishing his familiar was with him.
Meanwhile, unknown to the party, a figure turns his horse having seen them, and rides back toward the temple. Journ’ee casts his eldritch fires wildly to continue his distraction. Another one of his illusions winks out with a bullet, then the last one. He props the torches up, turns himself invisible and begins to make his way towards then temple. Granuaile and Julio make their way out of the field of pillars and columns and see a maze of roads and traps towards the temple. Brant, 428 and Sivaras gather at the edge of the pillars looking at the roadside and the hill up to the temple.
A figure reaches the top of the hill and sees the route on the road open to him. He warns his guardsmen that the party is coming. They agree to fight, and the horse is sent away, before taking positions in the ramparts. Granuaile reaches the top of the hill and sees the ramparts, hearing a commotion. She approaches holding her military insignia above her head, none threateningly and she is spotted riding Julio by the unknown rider from before. The figure recognises her insignia as part of the forces of Oskiliath. The quartermaster calls out and asks if Granuaile is “friend or foe”. She declares herself a friend and throws down her weapons. The crossbows aimed at her are lowered and a solider takes them. Granuaile identifies herself as Lady Granuaile of the Fourth House of Mountainsfoot, Eye of the Protectorate and Keeper of the Watch. She shares she represents the Protectorate Council. She is told that the temple is being seen as a prison, as the enemy controls the pass and their numbers grow by the day. Her weapons are returned to her and the party rejoins her. Soon after they rest of the party see a mixture of common races in a range of different armours, and under different banners working as a newly forged unified battalion. In amongst them is a shoulder length white haired tall male character of unknown race leaning on his quarter staff. The quartermaster greats the rest of the party at the top of the hill and introduces himself as Renee. Journ’ee is able to recognise the range of symbols and insignia that the quartermaster and other soldiers are wearing, from his time serving in a mercenary company. Inside the Temple courtyard there is a bare leaf and seemingly lifeless tree. Beyond the courtyard is the Temple proper, built into the rock face.
On asking abouit what is happening, the party learn that they have returned to Bukká Mortainé three days before they left, rewriting their own time line, just as Beth said might happen. Learing this Brant tells Renee that their messages asking, begging for aid are not being received and that there is a barrier of some sort around the whole country. The mages who have sent magical messages are all hit with some sort of mental haze and cannot be certain their messages have been received. He is fearful that no outside help is coming. Granuaile encouraged Renee to continue to evacuate whoever he can, focusing on the young and wounded. And he shares a small strike force may be able to get to the capital, Quel Ce La Mon where a larger force will be spotted and stopped by the greyborn forces. Sivaras and 428 make their way to the infirmary, having been hit worst by the riflemen, and with 428 still breathing heavily from his combat on Valmora. Renee tells Granuaile that the Orion war ship hovers above the capital city, threateningly, but has not yet fired.
Meanwhile in the infirmary, Journ’ee drops the concentration on his invisibility. 428 sees a familiar face of Quinten Morray rocking on his cot repeating his name, having apparently lost his mind. The giantkin and Fallen woman are healed by the attendants as best as they can. Sivaras is met by the scout from the road who introduces himself as Du’Reth, who seems to speak her native serpentine language. He speaks to Sivaras and as he does, he begins to read her surface thoughts, without her knowledge whilst he heals her. He asks how she came to meet the Oskillian, and he gets flashes of images of Granuaile in various ways, fighting foes, powerfully, and impressively, as well as saving Sivaras from a jail cell. He learns of the Order of Dawnika and that she has been asked to assess the skills of the party by The Order and the Queen. Du’Reth finishes his healing of Sivaras. 428 and Granuaile head out of the infirmary as 428 is seemingly pulled toward the courtyard and the central tree. There is an older woman planting and gardening near the tree. 428 asks to join her in planting seeds. He takes out a seed from his bag, makes a hole and plants his own seed deep into the soil. The giantkin feels a slight pulse of power when he plants the acorn seed. He stays with the woman for a while, planting regular seeds before telling her he is tired and walking away. The party heads to the eastern barracks while the scout Du’Reth goes to the quartermaster and informs him that Sivaras is “on the level”. He is ordered to watch the party and assess their skills.
Sivaras and Journ’ee try to barter for some incense, both keen to resummons their respective familiars. However, noticing this is getting nowhere Sivaras spots some other incense and grabs this, before turning into a mouse, with the insence merging into her form. She is spotted by a temple cat, who pounces on her mouse form. She is turned back into her natural blue form, scares off the cat and takes her stolen intense to the party bunk lodgings. Journ’ee agrees to engage in prayer to prove his worth for some insence from a holy man, offering prayers to Vollabuke. Granuaile seeks a blacksmith or similar and finds a dwarf hammering on some armour. She asks for her rank insignia from her old armour to be transferred onto her new plate armour. Journ’ee joins the holy man at a chapel joining in the celebration to Vollabuke. Journ’ee is called to the altar by the celebrant. The pyromancer dwarf begins to control the flames when priest try’s to heal him, and is thought to be blessed by Vollabuke, by the congregation surround him, who gather up into a cult chanting Vollabuke will heal him. He performs and convincingly cons the crowd he has been reborn in Vollabuke’s light, and is given incense for his trouble. Granuaile heads to the kitchen to collect some foosskka (a spiced oat) for the blacksmith in exchange for his work on her armour. She also steals some turnips and sugar cubes from the kitchen her for and her horse.
The party rests, and Sivaras summons her familiar Tonillil, back into his rose boa form. In the morning Sivaras gives Tonillil to Granuaile so she can monitor her conversation with the quartermaster, before she makes her own way to the mages who had been trying to send the messages out of Bukká Mortainé. The skin has regrown on 428’s hand, over his previous skeletal injury, but he still returns to the infirmary for further healing as he remains considerably injured. Granuaile tends to Julio in the morning and treats him with sugar cubes, she revisits the blacksmith who has been able to do all the work he promised, including transferring augmentations from the found dagger onto her warhammer. She heads to the quartermaster and Brant goes to the blacksmith. Whilst there, Brant offers the knowledge of his fibre based hexweave from clothing which reduces the hurt felt by gunshot. The blacksmith tells Brant the quartermaster will deal with it. Instead, Brant offers it as payment for repairs to his weapons and armour. The blacksmith accepts this deal, but does ask Brant to pen a stirring poem to help move and give courage to his people. Brant asks for who may be able to help teleport him to Quel Ce La Mon, and is told mages can be found in the west portion of the Temple. Du’Reth patrols early morning, and then follows Journ’ee in his morning activities. Journ’ee wakes surrounded by many faithful followers of Vollabuke anointing him with holy oil. He is celebrating his own morning, having risen to the occasion. The faithful are all in awe of his holy Awakening. The women and one man are attracted to him because he has been chosen as a Champion of Vollabuke as prophecised. Journ’ee tells them he had a dream of walking through a field with the Anduwin, Vollabuke. Journ’ee uses this to gather favour with some attractive members of the crowd. Du’Reth detects Journ’ee’s thoughts and learns of Journ’ee’s future knowledge. Journ’ee tells the crowd to spread the love of Vollabuke and spread the strength of men in their excrement. The crowd is in full agreement with Journ’ee. One woman wants to “go to town” on the dwarf, which Du’Reth detects in her mind, whilst still sensing the motives of he pyromancer. Du’Reth calls out to Journ’ee that the quartermaster needs him. Journ’ee refuses to attend and allows the woman to pleasure him. Du’Reth flees to the quartermaster and informs him that Journ’ee has started a cult to himself, within a holy and sacred place. Du’Reth is ordered to take good strong men and arrest Journ’ee for this behaviour. Du’Reth and the soliders surround Journ’ee’s bed, and tell him he is under arrest. Journ’ee resists the arrest demanding to know why he is being arrested. Du’Reth begins a countdown, and Journ’ee does settle his resistance, he puts on trousers and is escorted to the brig. Journ’ee requests Granuaile attend as his attorney.
Granuaile, Brant, 428 and Sivaras meet with the quartermaster. They are told of Journ’ee’s arrest. Granuaile offers the quartermaster knowledge of the protective weave. Brant asks for access to mages to hopefully be teleported to Quel Ce La Mon, and Sivaras offers her arcane assistance to the temple’s mages in sending messages or breaking through the protective shield. Du’Reth joins the tent, and asks to speak with the quartermaster alone. Du’Reth tells the quartermaster what he learnt from reading the party’s thoughts, including that the Orion will attack in the near future. Brant and Sivaras are given seals granting them access to the mages. Granuaile asks for a potion brewer in the camp and 428 says he is watching the party and plans to keep them safe.
Brant and Sivaras head deeper into the temple and toward the mages. They are in a large, cold and dark chamber filled with the sounds of chanting and a feel of very old magik. They enter a room where a consortium of magicians levitate books and other artefacts. Sivaras meets with Mage Elroy, and shares her theories that there is a shield over the country and that if possible, anti magik or dispelling may be the way to breach the shield to get the messages through to allied countries. They discuss that there may be a focal point in the capital which needs to be destroyed. Sivaras asks for spell ink, and Brant asks for a way to get to the capital quickly if they are to destroy this “focal point”. Brant and Sivaras are both told the mages will test the theory and if it proves correct, they will aid the party in whatever way they can.
And that’s where we left off…