Alauria's Reign

Log entry 3
an excerpt from the journal of Enthir

Its been some time since I’ve written.

We have come so far and I have learned so much about those I travel with.

Hopefully what i have done(creating the trade deal) and the present I’ve given to Óldor(the knowledge needed to hopefully mobilize the armies of Alauria) will be enough to allow me to return to my home no longer a threat to his claim. I’d hate to have to end him and deal with politics.

Óldor finally responded to my correspondence.
I will return home soon, my oldest quest soon complete, and with heretics in tow.
i have told them the true-believers threaten my home. this should be enough to get them to follow me back.

We passed through a trying dungeon which tested our ability to work together and use our surroundings. Some fared better than others.

The many and confusing lies of deamons seep into the minds of my companions. i found myself unable to tell the difference between a true agent of Alauria and a pretender. The deamon-blood proved himself to always be an agent of destruction. the dragon-blood seems to have fallen. As per my brothers request I will wait to act.

A sea of undead lie between us and what seems to be a powerful necromancer… or another deamon? I didn’t have much to offer in the way of a solution. i might be able to sneak through… but one wrong step could cost me my life…

the others suggest we create a disaster to subdue or destroy them then fly across… we know they have bows. flying seems foolish… sister, you risk too much. if i could only hit the target from here….

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Journal of Brielle Greymourn, Entry 4 - Not Finished!
What a True Believer stands for?

Darkness fades into light again as I wake to see a white scaled Dragonborn in shining armor stand in front of me. It is not hard to figure out that this man must be Erganus. Noreixius, Krull and I are ordered to our feet – our hands and Krull’s one remaining hand bound in manacles. In the small group of soldiers that remain, I feel a sense of satisfaction – even though we failed in our endeavor, we did manage to cut down the majority of them. Among them, I spot a towering figure that could only be Gromak, his head covered by a black hood and surrounded by steaming rolls of cloth – he appears to be drugged.

To my shock, the Elf, Enthir stood near us, calling himself a merchant and attempting to convince Erganus to take him with us as they prepare to leave the Stone Fortress. He tells them that he is interested in learning what the True Believers stand for. Much to my doubt, he does manage to convince them enough to join us, but it is not hard to see, that this Erganus is not convinced by his act. We begin to move north through the woods to Onwick Stronghold – two of their soldiers keep leaving on scout patrol and two more lead the again-captured Cyclops, we all move slowly in our chains. I am at a loss, never before have I been in this situation – held against my will and the only person who can help us, who had sent his servant to aid us – who then left with no word when we needed it, was standing there trying to charm the leader of this vile cult!

A few rotations of their guard later, it is then that Enthir asks for more information, asking them to preach their word, but he refuses. I don’t know what came over me, but I spoke up. I know that even though Urganis tells us that the time for preaching has passed, he will want to speak his word once again and so I demand that he speak. If we are to follow him without problems, we should know why. He does seem eager once again speak his word. He speaks of their Patron Balisar and of a Dragon who has flown the stars, he says that the people we witnessed disappear in Stormreach never existed. That we are among the few true souls in our world. He is convinced that because we are true, that we should not be executed.

As we begin our trek again…

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Journal of Brielle Greymourn, Entry 3
Arriving at the Keep of the True Believers

The fight with the Dwarven Armor has left us weakened, so after taking some time to mend our wounds, we decide as a group, finally, what our next step is. While Krull wants to go back to Stormreach, Skull wants to go back to find the Dwarves. I do see both points and it is good that we all do eventually agree it is best to make our way back to the Dwarves to hand off their armor. For all we know it could reactivate and kill us all in our sleep.

Not long after we began to travel, we spot tracks of an undistinguishable nature. Because of this, Krull and Skull decide to scout ahead while Gromak, Noreixius and I follow by thirty minutes in an attempt to rest up a bit more. We are not long into this journey, but already we are worn and wounded. If we keep going at this pace, who know’s what may happen to us?

When we arrive at the Dwarven Campsite, they are quick to hand off their clan’s moonstone to Skull as thanks for saving them from any more loss of honor due to the rogue armor. It is strange though, while they seem grateful, they appear shaken. It is then that Skull tells us of Arvek and Braff’s experience they shared with them – Haunted, they said, by a ghostly woman who disappeared when they approached her. Even now, they still appear ashen and scared. They change the subject rather quickly though, but I am curious of this woman they saw.

We talk of their clan and interestingly, they are not strictly Dwarven. The two invite our group to join them in Raywell in the north east, if we’d like to learn more of them. If we’d like to recognize them, we are to use the scrap of armor they have provided me that displays the odd symbol we have seen all over the Rogue Armor. They are kind and their ways a bit strange, but maybe one day, I’ll meet them again. After we part ways, our group begins our trek once again up through the Harrah Hills.

It is not long after that we come upon the edge of the hill we have been trekking on, and even in the early evening dusk we can see the lights of a Stone Fortress in the distance. From our location, it looks to be impenetrable. We are able to spot only one approach that would not mean almost certain death – The ground we stand on continues to meet two tall guard towers which lead to a slim bridge. This bridge then connects with the main building where another two towers stand. From where we have stopped, we can see the sides of the Fortress drop down on all sides to one of the most steep and treacherous rock faces I have ever seen. Tired and still hurting from our earlier battles, I am glad that we all manage to agree without fight, it is best we backtrack and rest.

After moving back into the cover of the woods, we begin to set up our camp. After throwing down his bed roll, Noreixius makes friends with a Raven he has captured, though captured may be too strong of a word. Plucked off a branch may be more like it. As we have noticed on our journey so far, all of the Raven’s have been acting strangely – watching, calmly, barely moving or even acknowledging anything. Noreixius calls his new friend, Tom.

Sometime later after finally resting and having gained my strength back, I sit on guard. While the evening has been quiet so far, I begin to hear noises and voices – we believe it is around midnight and have discerned that it could be that this is the changing of the guard at the keep. Not long after that, we hear something large moving through the woods speaking in Giant – grunting words like hungry, etc. I am grateful that most of our group is sleeping so not to draw any unwanted attention.

Some time later as the others begin to wake from their rest, my curiosity has grown of this place. Hoping that it is truly the location we are looking for, we decide to scout closer. Both Gromak and I make our way toward the bridge in the dark with the intention to try and learn more so we can plan a diversion for Noreixius, Krul and Skull to sneak toward the rock face. Though we try to be quiet, the guards hear us approach and we overhear as they form a small search party. Since we have discovered that these woods are haunted by spirits, I try to use that to my advantage. Crying and teleporting, I hope to convince them long enough for Gromak to get away, but I could not cast myself far enough. Even if I had, I don’t know why, but Gromak went toward them proclaiming to be a ghost tracker! I don’t know what he was thinking. We didn’t know what we’d find up close, but we did not plan to walk in there willingly! It was all I could do, not to run back in there as they took him away in manacles, thankfully believing my ruse, they left me be.

I planned to gather the rest of the group, but they had already left to see what they could at the base of the rock face. By some grace, I managed to catch up as they begin to climb, I tell them what has happened as I join in the trek up toward the main building, aided by Noreixius ability to mold hand holds in the dirt. Now, instead of trying to find out what we could of the fortress, we need to plan a rescue mission as well. From the small window’s lining the exterior, we can see the top of a very large creature and hear the clanging of the manacles wrapped around him. Skull seems to focus internally and I realize then, that he is speaking to the creature. He has told us that he hopes the if we help the creature escape, he may help us.

Our fight begins when Skull aims his bow through the window to one of the many of the soldiers inside – the creature, which turns out to be a cyclops is scared, timid even as we move inside and try to release him. He seems to cower and even more so at the sound of a battle horn. This sound scares him and the soldiers we fight, seem empowered by it. When I finally have the opportunity to inflict some damage with my magic, the Cyclops looks willing to fight. Unfortunately, as has happened to those in my family before, my magic surges and almost at once, and while everything shifts around me, I feel myself grow younger. My mental and emotional capabilities unchanged, but I can feel the change – my body is now roughly seven years younger.

We fight with determination, but we are down one because of Gromak’s capture and after Noreixius and Krull fall unconscious, I have but moments to wonder where Skull disappeared to and fend for myself before everything turns dark.

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Log Entry 2
an excerpt from the journal of Enthir

We were accosted in the night by a patrol. Or rather we saw them in the distance and sought them out. Now, while I am far from opposed to violence, I do believe that potentially deadly conflicts should be avoided whenever possible especially when one does not know the strength of their enemy.
The following morning we came upon several wraiths lying in ambush. Wraiths, seems strange and worth keeping in mind. Our kind-hearted half orc proved himself valiant and resilient against the foe. Also, a wonderful distraction while I peppered them with arrows. Thankfully my skills allowed me to avoid any real harm. But the eladrin girl Was struck and drained by the spirits. It’s as though the life was pulled from her. She has yet to recover and should be watched. I didn’t notice before… but shes rather pretty… could be that her only completion out here is the trees. Either way i’very hardly enough time to be thinking about… turnips… at the moment.
We later came upon a small group of dwarves and their armor… elementals? Creatures made of energy given form and stored in suits of armor. Our Goliath, as useful as a movable steel baracade, proved his ineptitude at dealing with people yet again. He could not understand why the dwarves would not trust and reveal their secrets to travelers they just met. He on the other hand was more than eager to gift his secert knowledge to them in return for nothing but a promise. Fool. If it were up to me. I would have simply turned down the miniscule payment for the contract to subdue one of their armors gone rouge and moved on… but for now I will remain content to let this group blunder about the world and keep my eyes open for opportunities

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Log Entry 1
an excerpt from the journal of Enthir

I have encountered a cult in the city of stormreach. This information could be of use to the Darkstar family. Prehaps even to allow the family to extend it’s reach beyond their home city…
I usually work alone. I have never had to worry about social interactions as the skull.. mostly just the killing… it was awkward and will take some time to develop. There in the dark as to my secert. I’m not sure I wanna share it yet… I might… but not yet. For know they will believe the skull to be working for Ent as the rest of the world does. But I will quickly have to develop a personality that seems more realistic… or at the very least keep my blasted mouth shut.

As for the others, there seems something strangely familiar about the eladrin girl… but I can’t quite place it.
The one handed warrior seems kind. And odd trait for that line of work.
and then there’s the dragonborn. He’s… interesting useful… and I think our world views are more aligned then the rest. But he draws a sharp line in the sand. One I shall have no problem dancing back and forth across. Let us hope that I will not have to help him open a vein one night.

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Journal of Gromak II
On the road to information

I think our “team” is lacking something. Something that my previous team lacked. Cohesion. We are all very able individuals, but when working with one another, there seems to be some tension. This needs to be fixed. I don’t want another frost cavern incident.

After travelling for some time, we came across a group of dwarves that have some sort of autonomous armor-guards. They were empty shells that were bound together by a kind of white energy. The dwarves were very adamant about not telling me how they were powered or created, even after they told us that one of them went rouge and gained sentience. It would have been much easier to trace it with the parent power source. However, even though they made our lives somewhat more difficult (even though it was up to us whether to help them or not. Again, cohesion), they did agree to investigate the symbol and “Wrex” that is written on the cloth from the frost cavern. Always a plus.

After that somewhat biased transaction, we leave the dwarven camp and soon after, run into the rogue autonomous armor. This is where I saw the potential, not only for the magic in the armor, but also for our team. We had a singular goal and we all stuck to it and really protected one another. Maybe time is the missing ingredient?

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Journal of Brielle Greymourn, Entry 2
Through the Maestad Woods

Maestad WoodsWhen morning came, I had hoped that one of the group would try to take lead. To give instruction or speak their opinion on how we should go about this, but no one spoke on it. For that, I am wary of how safe I will be among them as everyone seems to be going about this their own way. I am no leader, I can take care of myself of course, but we are a large group and we will attract attention. There is no real way to disguise a Dragonborn, a Half Orc, and a Goliath. We need someone who can step up and rally us into a team.

The " skull " disappeared not long after we began to forge ahead. I’d like to assume he was scouting for traps or more of these True Believers, but he made no mention of what he was doing. For all I knew, he decided that our mission was not worth his time and just left.

I admit, it took me a little too long to notice, but while we traveled we were being watched. The Goliath and Dragonborn, Noreixius as I had learned his name, had been leading our little caravan on foot when Gromak stopped suddenly and told us the Ravens were watching. He does not seem like the most observant of this bunch, but before I could ask him how he knew, a chill, like a cold hand of death ran over my neck and it was apparent that I wasn’t the only one who felt it. Everyone seemed on edge.

At that moment, Krull was attacked. The black hands of a Wraith grabbed onto him and three more appeared joining in the fight. It wasn’t a long battle, but I was not able to defend against the purple Spectre’s attack. My life drained, I felt ill and weak. We managed to make it through, but I could barely move – everything seemed to move in slow motion around me. I remember being helped back into the cart, I think by Noreixius, and then we were moving again.

A little later on, we came across a large piece of Armor standing and moving on its own. “Turn around and go!” we heard. But of course, not only do we not tell each other what we’re doing, but we seem eager to run into harms way! Luckily, it is discovered that behind this hulking Armor are two Dwarven brothers, Arvek and Braff. The Goliath seemed eager to learn all of their secrets, but I am hesitant. While they say they have nothing to do with these True Believer’s, they have remained out here in the very woods they say are being patrolled by this cult. They seem well protected, but how sure can we be that they are true to their word?

They tell us that one of their suits of Armor has become sentient and gone rogue, it is attacking animals and they are trying to track it down before it can do anything more. While we are offered gems and baubles, I think it wise we don’t make any outright agreements to help. Just like they seem hesitant to give us more information, I am hesitant to trust anyone new in these woods. We do agree though, that if we happen across this Rogue Armor and we defeat it, we’ll seek them out the next time we enter Stormreach.

As we left their camp, I had hoped there might be time for me to rest again, to gain some back some of my strength, but it is then I see a bloodied Stag. We have managed to land on the trail of the Rogue Armor. It manages to catch us off guard, but we rally back. It is Noreixius this time who catches the brunt of it’s attack, but we eventually defeat it.

Now we sit, inspecting our wounds and trying to tend to them. At the same time, Gromak is keen on studying the armor, pointing out the strange symbol etched on every piece. I am even more curious now of these Dwarves, what kind of magic are they playing with? Even worse, where did they learn this magic from?

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Journal of Gromak
The start of something

Well, today sucked. Here I am delivering my tribute to what’s-her-face, and I have to go and open my big stupid mouth about the primal spirit. Way to go, idiot. Whatever.

On a not so bad side note, some…thing in super shiny armor landed in the middle of the speech-thingie that the tributes were doing and took out a scroll and read from it after monologueing (why do all the bag guys have to do that? Why cant they just come in, do whatever it is they want to do, and then leave so I can hunt them down and beat them to a pulp until they tell me what I want to hear. THAT’S the proper time to monologue), and a lot of the people just vanished. That certainly takes a lot of power. Maybe a connection with this Wrex character?

The people that were left I’m apparently travelling with now, which I guess isn’t so bad. The Dragonborn lady (Noreahces? No’reechis? No leeches?) seems pretty competent and confident. A real go-getter. I like that about people. No beating around the bush. The Eladrin girl that’s with us is a real treat. Very quiet, but said something about this happening before. I hope she opens up more. Imagine the wealth of knowledge in that head of hers! Krul seems nice. Soft-spoken, especially for a half-orc of his size and, well…size. He’s got a cart, which is always handy, and a donkey to pull it (WHO NAMES A DONKEY RUTH?), and he’s not bad with a sword either, considering he only has one arm to wield it. Then there’s the special case. There’s always one, right? “The skull”. What a pain in the ass. He’s always sneaking around, trying to make a quick gold, and stealing everything he can. He stole speedy the goat. Speedy. The. Goat. Really? But, it does seem that he can hold his own in a fight, which is useful.

All in all, not how I wanted to start my day in stormreach, but I suppose it could have been worse.

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Journal of Brielle Greymourn, Entry 1
In the City of Stormreach

After arriving in the city of Stormreach in the midst of their tribute celebration, I have witnessed an unnerving and terrifying spectacle. I had just met with one of the Alauria hopefuls and given her tribute, a child’s bone from Holysigh, when I saw a glare of sunlight bounce off of something in the sky. Moments later a figure clad in shimmering silver armor landed on the stage. He spoke only for a minute and read from a scroll in his hand – I could only stare in fascination and horror. No one moved or did anything.

Before we all knew it, he had gone in a flash, and with him, most of the crowd around us. A few of us remained, including the high priest, Thormin, and two of the hopefuls, Elellen and Briga. The small one, the Halfling, Sappha was missing.

I’m not sure what I expected of these people, they had just witnessed their family, their friends, everyone they’d ever known disappear. I didn’t even know how to react and I’ve seen the outcome before of an entire city of people going missing. Some fell to pieces, the Human hopeful, Briga wanted to track down the being that did this and kill him. I couldn’t help but speak up – we should not kill them if we find them. We must figure out what they want, why they took these people and help to bring them home. After all, I have still not been able to find anything on Holysigh and how all of the undead vanished, maybe I have been given a chance to prove myself once again

Some others stepped up, a Dragonborn, who I admit is slightly intimidating. He seemed taken with the Halfling and rather upset that she was gone so his intentions seem to be honorable. Then there was the goliath, Gromak, and the Half Orc, Krull I believe is his name, I felt more than dwarfed by these two, but they both look to know their way around a battle field. Last there was the Elf, Enthir, interested in helping, but not willing to do the work himself. Rather he’d let his man-servant put himself in harms-way? And this man with the skull covering his face, it makes me feel uneasy. Who could need to hide their face in such a way?

We met with the city Blacksmith, Habi, who told us he filled an order for armor just like the one the figure wore – 2 dozen of them, signed by Erganis. He pointed us toward Barry, the owner of the Speedy Goat, the courier service that picked up the order. Barry told us he had no recollection of this delivery, but had sold one of his carts not too long ago to a Blue Dragonborn – the same Blue Dragonborn that Habi had handed off the armor to.

After a tiresome argument about a goat, this group and I have set out toward Harrah Hills through the Maestad Woods, the location of where the armor was to be delivered. Some hours after we stopped to rest while I sat on watch, I saw flickering in the woods around us. The flickering turned out to be large dogs with the ability to teleport, their human masters – calling themselves the True Believers. The group and I stood to fight. We had a quick pause when they announced themselves to be of the same cult as the being in Stormreach. I asked if their leader was Erganis, they nodded. I had hoped to get more information from them, but they waited no more after that, they attacked with their dogs and we had no choice but to cut them down.

I am only left now with more questions then before. But I am hopeful that this path toward the Cult of the True Believers may help me on my own mission.

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