Welcome to the New Age

Interlude: Columbia part One
Birth of a New Nation

June 21- June 29, 25NA

The Heralds are accosted by a gang of aggressive centaurs on the way home.  After a tough battle, they emerge victorious.

Upon their return they find things are different in Grayson, the appointment of a monarch, King Bruce Courdry, has altered the flow of the town a little.  The livery now seems to house flying mounts - four gryphons - take a spot in the yard, and the two Panthrows garner much appreciation from Abram Dreier and his staff.

They are directed to present themselves before the king up on their return and are greeted warmly.  Bruce insists on having them all to his home for dinner that evening.

The group has errands to run, and each goes their separate ways, but Gareth and Iliken seek out Grumbar Brightaxe to seek his counsel about the possibility that  Declan and Aideen might be enthralled still by the strange fish they encountered days earlier.

Grumbar confronts each twin and removes the charmed influences on each, but they are surprisingly not as grateful as might be expected…

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Tortuga Part 2
But the fish is our friend...

The party made quick work of the Hydra, but as they searched the cavern, the diving bell started to lift!  A scramble for safety left them wet, but inside the sphere.

Unfortunately, shortly after they closed the door, the sphere stopped.  A voice, reminiscent of the fish-like creature they met at The Smithsonian, rang through their heads.

The Aboleth explained that it had thought that the Hydra would kill them, end the party’s lives in a heroic way.  It apologized that it had to betray them, but that they knew too much, and that it could not afford to let our heroes go.

Realizing that the safety they had worked so hard to attain had become a watery prison, the group worked fast to break free and attempt the swim to the surface.  

Before they could make the surface, though, the Aboleth himself attacked the party.  It made itself allies of the twins, promising to help them fulfill their deepest dreams.

With their help, the injured creature was able to swim off to tend to its wounds.  The twins, however, had to explain why their spells had turned against the rest of the party just as the fight was beginning to turn in the heroes favor.

At the surface, the pirates (strangely helpful, and offering no fight) gave the party the Sword of Sigurd and returned their mounts. Rather than make the trip overland, the group opted to teleport back to the great tree. 

Most of the Panthrows were returned to Wilks, and after a rest, the group turned its eyes to the next task ahead…

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Tortuga Part one
There's Something fishy here...

June 18-19, 25NA

Prince Padraig gives the group a parting gift, a lucky clover that Declan takes, and the party flies to Tortuga to attempt to meet and deal with Greybeard Seaworthy of the Depp Clan.

Tortuga proves to be an artificial island composed of hundreds of ships and lashed and anchored together.  While suitably impressed by the entrance the party makes, riding their winged mounts, they are still unwilling to allow the party to approach the captain without disarming them.  

Even when they meet with Seaworthy, a fight still breaks out.  Sheer numbers overcome the party and they are put in a brig to contemplate their situation.  The captain meets with Aideen, and seems to know her.  He tells her that he'll be able to give them the sword if they can defeat "the snake".  Also he suggests that he'll let them have their gear back for the fight.

The snake is found in an underwater air pocket that is only reached by a diving bell.  The group watches in fascination or horror as the creature comes into the air, a serpent with five heads…

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Borderlanders part 3 & 4
Into the Witch Oaks

June 9-17, 25NA

The hollow tree proves to lead into a complex of caves and chambers occupied by more of the strange bruise colored Giants and the Gnolls.  The trip culminates in battle with a powerful troll filled with draconic and Druidic powers along with two of the regular creatures and a particularly potent Gnoll in a chamber with a runic circle.

The Druidic creature possessed a wand that creates and utilizes the runic circle of teleportation.  The group also finds a strange magical fruit that imbues draconic power into Desmond, making him into a partially dragonish creature.  What other effects it might have are not immediately clear.

The party rescues some of the Panthrows kittens, but not all.  And they make their way down to meet back up with Dorian Wilks.  He begins to train the party in riding the adult panthrows.

It takes a week before the group is deemed ready to make their trip to Tortuga.

South of the Borderwood lies the villages along the gulf that once lead to Mexico.  These fishing settlements belong to the Depp Clan pirates.  Most have a raiding ship or two that seems to double as a fishing vessel.

As the party heads towards the end of the former state of Florida, the Borderwood shifts almost abruptly into the Ogrefen.   A strange tower juts high above the swamp and the group is nearly distracted by it.  

One night, near the end of the last watch, the party meets Prince Padraig Oakhart, a Sprite of the Summer Court.

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Borderlanders Part 2

June 8-9, 25NA

The path into the hills and mountains is surrounded by the Hag-Oak trees, imports from the Feywild.  During the climb, signs are noted of medium sized creatures that may have hunted out other predatory creatures here, but no sign is found of the larger, ogre-sized, creatures.

Gnolls, strange hyena-men who seemed to hail from somewhere south of the border into Old-Mexico, riding giant vultures attack the party from a frustrating range, but an ice spell from Aideen kills them.

Strange lights are visible at night from the path, seeming to surround a giant tree near the top of the path.

More Gnolls are encountered at the end of the path, guarding the outside of the tree, which has a huge door in it.  After the fight with the Gnolls the party attempts to enter the tree, finding strange bruise colored giants that recovered quickly from injuries.  Fire seemed to end the recovery process.

What other threats lie inside the giant tree…?

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Borderlanders Part 1

June 1-8, 25NA

A miracle happens.  Anne Finnegan is alive once more, after the invocations of Grumbar Brighthammer and. The heartfelt words of Declan, Illiken, and Desmond.

Mrs. Finnegan goes to work for the Courdy house while the party leaves for their mission.  Though as they leave, the party does remember to vote to elevate Bruce Courdy to King.

Several days of journeying brings the party to the Borderwood.  Some sort of fey magic makes the forest difficult to explore. The party finds the scene of a combat between large predatory cats and some sort of ogre sized opponents.

After a misadventure crossing a river the party meets Dorian Wilks, a ranger raising creatures he calls "Panthrows"— giant winged panthers.  His charges would be perfect for their trip to the pirate island of Tortuga, if they hadn't been taken by the strange "spindly giants" living up in the mountains…

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Unification Part 3
Finnegan's Wake

May 31- June 1, 25NA

After the traumatic events of the previous session, the party's plans to leave for Sigurd's sword are put on hold.

Declan and Aideen approach and Declan threatens Red Simpson, who seems mostly unafraid of the group and its bluster.  Declan decides to take his anger to the Mayor.

The rest of the group along with Baldric return from buying supplies to discover the body of Anne Finnegan in the kitchen.  After an angry visit to the Homely Sheep, they leave to find Declan and Aideen on their way to the Courdry home.

During the comparing of notes, Baldric slips away and bewitches Red Simpson as well as burning down the Porter's guild.  Upon noticing the fire and Baldric's absence the party splits to go and help put out the fire.

Iliken puts forth a very Goliath challenge at the Homely Sheep, and in an attempt to turn the challenge into a direct conflict suggests the Black Mantle ought to seek a balance by attacking the party's leader — which the town in general has accepted to be Aideen.

Declan gets drunk and wanders the town and out the gate to the home of Grumbar Brighthammer.  He is followed by Desmond and the two of them discuss what might be involved in restoring Mrs. Finnegan to life.

Baldric confesses his crime but refuses to be arrested by the sheriff and teleports away.

Illiken, Nancy Healy, and Gareth pursue Aideen who travels to the tower to seek refuge from the Black Mantle and the the death sentence she believes is laid over her head now.  She does not get the sympathetic welcome she had hoped but is allowed to remain, with Gareth left as a watchman over her.

Iliken, Declan, and Desmond meet Grumbar at the doctor's office and each of the three give an impassioned speech to attempt to guild Anne Finnegan back to the land of the living.

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Unification part two
Tea with the Finnegan

May 30-31, 25NA

Ringing Hammer Hold and Caer Nimir are determined to make Bruce Courdry into a monarch.  Some people think is funny but Bruce seems overwhelmed.  

Bridges are mended between the Healy twins and their mother.  Though worries abound about the child Nan Healy is carrying.

Though there is debate about the course of action the Heralds might take, they once again agree to take on the path that will lead to a confrontation with Wendigo.  Samuel tells them about a Depp Clan stronghold on the island of Tortuga that might have the Sword of Sigurd on it.  The weapon supposedly killed a dragon in legends, so it feels like a good lead to everyone.  Samuel says that he knows of a Druid raising giant eagles who might lend them the use of his birds.  Baldric insists that he must go with them.

As the days continue, Declan expresses some connection to Mrs Finnegan, who worries about the group understanding where her loyalties lie.  When the two share a cup of tea, Mrs Finnegan seems to succumb to a deadly poison. Under her cup, Declan sees the number "2"…

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Unification part One
Hail to the King, baby

May 29-30, 25NA

The Heralds return home after a wearying journey to find the town of Grayson once more under threat by outside forces.  This time the threat is the fey lord named Dialb, whom the party had encountered the year before in their mission to cure the poisoning of Gwythr ap Llewellyn.  Dialb now controls the northern portions of the Greywinder Wood, as well as the gate to the Feywild.  He is making his presence known in the area as he threatens the elves of Caer Nimir.

While they were gone, Mayor Bruce Courdry and his adventuring companions travelled to the remains of the Pentagon, braving the lair of the Illithids there to rescue Nancy Healy, now pregnant with a child, and strangely rejuvenated by her experiences.  Mayor Courdry, too has expressed an inner reserve of energy not seen for many years in the town Grayson.  Bruce and Nancy are engaged to be married.

In the midst of the heroes having misgivings about the goings on in Grayson, Lord Gwythr ap Llewellyn and Master Grunr Stormborn maneuver Bruce Courdry into accepting a position of greater authority over the area…

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Trek
Homeward Bound

March 25-May 29, 25NA

The Heralds manage to escape pursuit by Wendigo when another dragon interferes.  The Red Dragon, Typhon, assaults Wendigo over territory dispute.  The dragons battle covers the party's escape.

The return to Nicholas' camp goes well after that, and the group, as well as the rescued slaves, all get time to rest.   Nicholas suggests that Aideen seek out his friend Samuel for advice on how to proceed in their "dragon problem".  Fizzle decides to stay with Nicholas, to attempt to recover away from the judgement of the folks back home.

It is decided to allow Declan to use the remaining teleportation scroll, but he lost control of the casting, and the scroll was destroyed. 

And so the long walk home begins.  The trip involves taking a pair of boats across the inland sea crossing from what was once Canada to the former United States.  The trip runs overland from there, and a few close calls with danger and a near miss from the hunchback and a large party of orcs follow their steps home.

Near Roanoke, the party meets Samuel, who helps them overcome a trap in a cave and tells them of the current problems: Dialb has come through the gate in the Greywinder Wood and declared war on Caer Nimir by the forces of Summer.

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