Session 36:
Left Behind


[JadedDM]: Amethyte 29th, Sparkday at 23 bells.  It's late at night.  The party has ridden hard and fast to the east, leaving Mudde in their wake.  Once it is so dark that the party cannot see where they are going at all, they finally agree to stop and make camp.  Tugh begins taking care of the exhausted horses and Terrah starts a fire.  Nari paces the camp, frustrated.  It's a calm and quiet night.

[Psyche]: Psyche sits near the fire, staring into it. "He had time to get out."

[Viarra]: Viarra sits next to Psyche, quietly and wordlessly for once.

[Lon]: Lon sits across from the other two, looking very exhausted. "He was able to start the fire, but do you think he had another..," he trails off.

[JadedDM]: Nari groans.  "That damned Governor...he still has my grandfather's sword.  And my money...hell, he even has that lousy Bloodguard armor."  Out of frustration, she picks up a rock and chucks it at the endless darkness.  "Ow," she mutters, rubbing at her arm wound that Terrah had recently patched up for her.

[Viarra]: Viarra hugs her knees to her chest.  "We have to find out." 

[Psyche]: Psyche looks to them all. "It is too soon to go back there. If we go back now, we would surely be caught."

[Viarra]: "I agree, but..."  Viarra sighs.  "I just wish we could do something." 

[JadedDM]: Terrah:  "Why would he delay?  Unless he was unable to come?"

[Viarra]: "Or caught."

[Lon]: "We have to go back," Lon agrees, "but you're too well-known."

[Psyche]: "I don't know why he would delay. He knew the plan...but we can't just leave him behind either. He would never forgive me if I did, especially after all that has happened." Psyche sighs, pulling her knees up to her chest. "Maybe one of us could sneak into the village."

[JadedDM]: Nari seems to realize nobody is paying attention to her ranting, so comes to sit by the others.

[JadedDM]: Tugh walks over.  "Horses are too exhausted.  They have to rest."

[Viarra]: Viarra looks at Terrah and Lon.  "You two would be the best -- I'd wager to say that Psyche, Nari and I were too visible durring the fight."

[Psyche]: "There are ways around being visible."

[Viarra]: Viarra arches an eyebrow.  "For how long?  Don't forget, your face is known to the Governor."  She quietly says.

[Psyche]: "I have an invisibility spell. It will only last a little while though." Psyche smiles faintly. "This would probably be the one time I wish Usagi was here. He had an invisibility spell that could last for hours."

[JadedDM]: Nari frowns.  "Usagi would have made things much, much worse."

[Lon]: "Well, we'll just have to work with what we have, as we've always done."

[Viarra]: "Would hours, even, be enough?" 

[Psyche]: "To search the governor's mansion? I think so," Psyche says, glancing to Nari. "Yes, but that spell of his would have been useful."

[Viarra]: "I have one that lasts twenty four hours, but, it dispels itself once one attacks.  I'm not sure if you could cast spells while under it."  Viarra's eyebrows come together in thought.

[Lon]: "If we go in, we can't count on anyone being friendly to our cause, can we?" Lon looks at Viarra. "Despite your..."  He struggles to search for the word. "Despite your fame?"

[Psyche]: "Usagi has the same spell, and I'm not thinking of attacking anyone. I just want to find him." Psyche then looks to Lon. "I have a feeling, at this point and time, the slaves won't even be supportive of our cause. We probably made their life even harder."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "What if he's dead?"

[Psyche]: "We aren't sure if he is or not, Nari. I want to keep up the hope that he isn't."

[Viarra]: "I don't know.  Psyche could be right, but, as I mentioned before, we could still use the events that have passed to rally them, to show them that the New Dawn is effective."  Viarra shrugs.  "And even if he is dead, we have to find out one way or another.  We can't leave anyone behind." 

[JadedDM]: Nari blinks.  "New Dawn?"

[Lon]: "It's more than that, though," Lon says.

[Psyche]: "The Rebels are not the Rebels anymore, Nari. We are now the New Dawn."

[Viarra]: "Oh?"  Viarra asks softly, encouraging Lon to continue. 

[Lon]: Lon looks a little embarrassed. "It's kind of hard to explain..."  Realizing something, he looks up sharply at Nari. "Nari. Can you tell us about how you got here? We got a few bits and pieces from Jeantinique, but it was pretty scattered."

[Psyche]: Psyche raises an eyebrow at Lon before turning her attention back to Nari. "That is a good question, how did you end up in Mudde?"

[JadedDM]: Nari looks around the campfire to the others, and then nods.  "All right, but then I have some questions of my own.  The last thing I really remember before coming here was being at the base.  It was under attack.  I was trying to protect Wedge and Luke...and one of those shadows got me."  Her head droops a bit.  "After that, it's kind of a blur.  I remember something about a light reaching out to me."  She looks back up.  "After that, I found myself lying about a mile from here, a vulture giving me a devious eye.  I made my way to Mudde and was greeted by the Governor's men.  Because of my armor, they thought I was Bloodguard."

[Psyche]: "Did you hear a voice when the light was reaching out to you, Nari?"

[JadedDM]: Nari's face contorts into concentration as she tries to remember.  "Yeah...I think."

[Psyche]: "Do you remember what it said to you?"

[JadedDM]: Nari shakes her head.  "Not really.  Something about hope, I think."

[Psyche]: Psyche glances to Lon for a moment before looking back to Nari. "We went through the same experience, Nari. I'm not exactly sure what happened, but the voice mentioned that we need to find the halo."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "What's that?"

[Lon]: "We have no idea."

[Psyche]: "I'm not sure, but I plan to find out soon enough."

[Lon]: "Nari, how long did it take you to start that rebellion?"

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Psyche, what really happened that night?  I mean...I thought we were all dead.  When I woke up, I wasn't sure why I was spared, but..."

[Psyche]: "I don't know what happened. I woke up in a void, a cold dark place, and I heard the voices of the Overlord and The Mistress of Shadows. They were trying to convince me that there was no hope left, that we all failed. They didn't understand why I continued to hold on."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Was it some kind of miracle then?  A work of Azedeth?"

[Psyche]: "I don't want to think that we were dead, but I do have a feeling that Azedeth had something to do with it. It would explain the light."

[JadedDM]: Terrah:  "What is Azedeth?"

[Psyche]: "Azedeth is the God of Light, Terrah."

[JadedDM]: Terrah:  "The gods are evil, though."

[Psyche]: "Not all Gods are evil though. Azedeth opposes the Gods of Evil. He fights along side us."

[JadedDM]: Terrah seems skeptical of this but says nothing.  Tugh also goes quiet.

[JadedDM]: Nari shakes her head.  "Whatever happened...what are we going to do now?"

[Psyche]: "We continue to fight, Nari. We need to find Draven, Kestrel, and the others. I made a promise to Luke that I would find Wedge." Psyche smiles faintly. "And like Viarra said, we don't leave anyone behind, so we have to go back for Christophe. I want things to cool down in Mudde first before we return."

[Lon]: "We can't wait too long...There's still a perfectly good execution stand in Mudde. If Christophe was caught..."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "What about Jerros?"

[Psyche]: "Jerros..." Psyche looks down at the lion shaped ring upon her finger. "I only found his ring. If he survived, he is out helping his brother now. He'll come back once he is done, if he lives."

[JadedDM]: Terrah:  "Would they execute him?"

[Psyche]: "If Christophe was caught, then he probably would be executed, though they might try to get information out of him first."

[Viarra]: "Probably torture,"  Viarra casually throws in. 

[Psyche]: "All right, so we all seem to agree that we need to go back for him. This is what I suggest. We go ahead and go check out the tower I mentioned before and set up a temporary base there. Once done, we can head back to Mudde and search for Christophe. Things should have settled down by then. Of course, I'm open to other ideas."

[Lon]: Lon frowns. "How many days away is this tower?"

[Psyche]: "About a week, maybe."

[Lon]: Lon shakes his head. "That's too long. Christophe could be dead in two weeks."

[Viarra]: Viarra swallowed and agreed with Lon.  "The Governor is a cruel man.  I doubt that he would keep Christophe alive that long."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Is Christophe a risk?  I mean, if he's tortured, would he talk?"

[Psyche]: "At this point and time, even if he did talk, I don't think they would get much out of him. After losing Draven and after all that has happened, he is slowly losing his mind I think."

[Lon]: Lon looks incredulously at Nari and Psyche. "That's not the point! He's one of us, and none of us should want him to be tortured."

[Viarra]: "If he did talk, though, Christophe knew where we were going.  If nothing else, I think we should avoid this tower for a while, just in case."  She cleared her throat.  "And no, no one wants him to be tortured.  It's a fate I wouldn't wish on my own worst enemy." 

[Psyche]: "I don't want him to be tortured, Lon. I have every intention of going back for him, but we have to wait it out a little. We can't just show up in Mudde the next day after all that we just did."

[Lon]: "Why not? They wouldn't be expecting it, would they?"

[Psyche]: "Maybe not, but it wouldn't be wise as I'm sure they would post guards everywhere."

[JadedDM]: Tugh:  "Is he really worth it?  Like Psyche said, he's gone crazy.  He's probably more of a threat to us than anyone else."

[Viarra]: Viarra smiled at Tugh.  "We don't know if that's true or not.  We can't leave anyone behind.  We just do it."

[Psyche]: Psyche looks to Tugh. "He needs help, Tugh. I have been trying to reach him, and I think I finally did until all of this took place." Psyche runs her fingers through her hair.

[JadedDM]: Tugh grunts and crosses her arms.

[Psyche]: "Janus is about two days away from here. We can head back there, perhaps to check up on the town to make sure everything is okay. We can come back to Mudde after that, so that is four days total. Would the Governor keep him alive that long if he has him?"

[Viarra]: Viarra shook her head.  "I can't answer that question.  The Governor might torture him for days on end, or he might merely decide that Christophe needs to be struck down like a rabid dog.  Either way, they all ready have the gallows up..." 

[Psyche]: "Or we can head back tomorrow and risk getting caught ourselves. I'll leave the choice up to all of you."

[Viarra]: "I say that we divide the party." Viarra frowned.  "Why not send Terrah and Lon back, to at least reconnoiter the area? They were the least visible durring combat, and they the least amount of time with us, the visible ones.  Lon and Terra might just get there to find out that Christophe is dead."  Viarra points out as an afterthought.

[Lon]: Lon pauses for a moment, thinking in earnest, before speaking slowly. "He was there, Psyche. Nari, Kestrel, or the others, could easily have been. But Christophe was there. That has to mean something. So, I say we go back. If not tomorrow, it should be our first and only priority right now."

[Psyche]: "If we are to divide up, I'm going with Terrah and Lon. If I wasn't there, he might think I don't care."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "I know what Jerros would do.  He wouldn't leave someone behind, so long as there was a chance they were still alive."

[Psyche]: "There really isn't any other way into Mudde is there?"

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Well...we know that Mudde is hitting some hard times.  The Governor doesn't have as many men as most warlords do.  They're spread thin."

[Lon]: "Is it possible they sent a few men to pursue us?"

[Viarra]: "You know, if we could just snatch up one of the Governor’s men, we could probably find out Christophe's fate."

[JadedDM]: Nari crosses her arms.  "Maybe.  Depends if he felt it was worth the risk.  I mean, on one hand, he'd need his men to calm the chaos we caused."

[Psyche]: "He probably doesn't think we are worth the risk. He will need his men...but Viarra's idea has promise. It is just a matter of grabbing one of the Governor's men."

[Viarra]: "Even if we could just get to the gate and snatch one of the Governor’s men and do it with a minimum of commotion...."

[Psyche]: "I'm sure it could be done with little commotion. Though, what if the guard doesn't have information?"

[Viarra]: "Then we knock him cold and snatch the one who comes to find him."

[Lon]: "Could we sneak in and ask one of the slaves?"

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "If we could break into the Overlord's stronghold, getting into Mudde shouldn't be too hard."

[Psyche]: "Getting in won't be hard. Getting in unnoticed would be the hard part."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "We didn't get noticed in Dan' least not until Isthan lost it and Usagi blew up a level of the tower..," she trails off.

[Psyche]: "Nari, the only reason why we weren't noticed is because we got a Bloodguard drunk and the guards in the stronghold thought we were...whores." Psyche wrinkles her nose a bit.

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "And that strategy could work again."

[Lon]: "I don't like where we're going here..."

[JadedDM]: Terrah yawns deeply, trying to keep her head up.

[Viarra]: "The fact of the matter is that those of us doing the whoring would be the ones they’re looking for," Viarra points out.

[Psyche]: "Exactly. So that strategy wouldn't really work in this case. Though sneaking in we can do, just as long as we do it under the cover of nightfall and a few of us were invisible."

[Viarra]: "Okay, so, I say we give it one day, one for us to rest and prepare, then on the next day, we head back for Mudde." 

[Psyche]: "I guess that is really the only choice we have."

[Viarra]: Viarra looks to the others.  "Everyone else agree?" she asks.

[Lon]: Lon nods. "We should get some sleep in the meantime."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "I'll take the first watch."  She stands up and dusts herself off.

[Psyche]: "I'll take second." Psyche announces before she settles herself down next to Terrah so she can get some sleep.

[Lon]: Lon whispers to Nari, "Do you have a weapon?"

[JadedDM]: Nari shakes her head.  "I've got nothing except the clothes on my back."

[Viarra]: Viarra gets her sleeping bag off of Fluffy and spreads it on the ground.  "I don't care which watch I have, just wake me up when it's my turn." 

[Lon]: "That could be a problem."

[JadedDM]: Nari shrugs.  "I'll make do.  Get some rest."

[Lon]: "If you say so." Lon sits in front of the fire and rests his head on his knees, falling asleep.

[JadedDM]: Several hours later...dawn will be approaching within the hour.  Lon is on watch, attempting to avoid the attention of a small group of mosquitoes that have seemed to taken a special interest in him.

[Lon]: Lon stifles a yawn and rubs his arms, trying to keep warm.

[Psyche]: Psyche seems to sleep soundly; occasionally she reaches up to swat away some bug that decided to attack her.

[Viarra]: Viarra snores lightly, though she will deny it if ever confronted. 

[Lon]: Lon stands up, grasping for a dart. "Who goes there?"

[JadedDM]: No answer comes, but listening carefully, he can make out the sound of horse shoes clopping on the ground.

[Psyche]: Psyche opens her eyes slowly upon hearing Lon's voice. She lifts her head slowly, looking over to Lon, keeping silent.

[Lon]: Lon hurriedly tries to shake the nearest person awake with his foot.

[Viarra]: Viarra grumbles.  "What?" she asks while she opens her eyes.

[Psyche]: "What is going on, Lon?" she whispers.

[Lon]: "Someone's out there," Lon whispers. "Wake the others."

[Viarra]: Viarra reaches out to the next nearest ones and attempts to shake them awake while rubbing the sleep out of her eyes.

[JadedDM]: A man on horseback emerges from the darkness, visible by the slowly rising sun's light.  He is wearing resplendent red armor with black spikes on the shoulders and a ram-like helmet with horns.  A massive sword is strapped to his back.  He brings his horse to a halt as the party slowly rouses from their sleep.

[Psyche]: Psyche stands up, nudging Terrah to wake up with her foot as her eyes fall upon a man.  "A red ram knight?"

[JadedDM]: Terrah and Nari both get up.  Nari is much quicker to get on her feet, especially when her eyes take in the mounted warrior.

[Viarra]: "A what?"  Viarra asks in surprise while she taps Tugh to wake her up. 

[JadedDM]: The warrior removes his helmet and tucks it under his arm, revealing a handsome, older man with platinum hair and brown eyes.  He brings his fingers to his mouth and whistles loudly.

[JadedDM]: Nari groans.  "That's the Governor's right hand man.  He's the one who caught me," she urgently whispers to the others.

[Psyche]: Psyche glances over to Nari for a moment, then back to the knight. "Perfect." She whispers to herself before speaking up to the knight. "Might we help you, sir?"

[JadedDM]: A moment later, seven more riders emerge behind him.  They are wearing chain mail and carrying swords.  They appear to be Mudde guards.

[JadedDM]: Red Ram:  "Indeed.  You are all under arrest, by order of the Governor of Mudde, for arson, kidnapping, and interfering with justice."

[JadedDM]: Tugh gets up last and shouts out in surprise at the squad of cavalry.  She quickly gets up and backs away, toward the horses.

[Psyche]: Psyche looks to the others in the group before turning her attention back to the Red Ram. "I see. And if we refuse to go with you?"

[JadedDM]: Red Ram:  "Then I will be forced to take you by force."  He reaches behind him and unsheathes his sword.  He then looks to Viarra.  "Miss Firesong, I trust these criminals have not harmed you?"

[Viarra]: "Not much," Viarra confirms, hoping to at least be able to stall for time.  "Sir, are you sure that these are the people you're looking for?  They have done nothing but look out for my safety..."

[Psyche]: Psyche looks sharply at Viarra before she says to the Red Ram. "You haven't by chance caught anyone else have you, or are we just lucky?"

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Hey...that's my grandfather's sword!"

[JadedDM]: Magnus:  He looks to Nari.  "Indeed, it is.  A Red Ram weapon...and it belongs with one of us."  He then glances to Viarra, and then Psyche.  "You mean the rambling fool we found in the manor?  Yes, we took him.  I played with him for a few hours, but he seemed not to know anything.  So I gutted him myself."

[Psyche]: Psyche narrows her eyes. "You lie."

[JadedDM]: Magnus:  "No, he's quite dead.  And you shall join him once the Governor is done with you."

[JadedDM]: Nari's muscles tense.  "You son of a..."

[Psyche]: "Nari...calm down." Psyche takes a deep breath. "What does he expect to learn from us?"

[JadedDM]: Magnus:  "You are obviously affiliated with the Rebels...why else would you help free one?  And then to have the gall to take Miss Firesong'll be lucky if the Governor doesn't decide to turn you over to the Overlord himself."

[Psyche]: "Perhaps we can come up with a deal. It was my idea to free Nari here. Let the others go and I'll go with you willingly and tell you what you want to know."

[JadedDM]: Magnus:  "So they can continue Rebel activities?  The Overlord was quite proud that he wiped you all out.  He'll be most displeased to learn a few of you roaches survived...and he'll never forgive us letting you slip back through the cracks.  No, I think not."  He gestures to his men.  "Take them.  Alive if possible, but it's not essential."

[Psyche]: "Most of these people aren't even Rebels though! They are innocent."

[JadedDM]: (Actions for Round 1?)

[Lon]: ((Sorry, I'm just kind of confused. Are we in a forest? Could you describe the terrain a bit more?))

[JadedDM]: (A forest?  In Renosia?  No, seriously.  It's mostly just dry plains.)

[Psyche]: "Don't let them surround us!" Psyche calls out before she begins chanting the words to a spell.

[Viarra]: Viarra breaks out in song, a song about the burning passions of a pair of lovers. 

[Psyche]: [1d10] -> [2] = (2)

[Viarra]: [1d10] -> [5] = (5)

[Lon]: Lon will throw a dart.

[Lon]: [1d10] -> [9] = (9)

[JadedDM]: (Throw a dart at whom?)

[Lon]: ((The main guy, I guess.))

[JadedDM]: Psyche's turn.

[Psyche]: Psyche kneels down as she chants, her hands moving down to the ground before she slowly starts to stand up, a red shield rising in front of her from the ground up to her head. It suddenly disappears after the spell is complete.

[JadedDM]: Viarra's turn.

[Viarra]: Viarra's song continues, hitting some high notes, and the lovers, Jade and Josten, it turns out, are having such great sex that it lights up an entire hamlet.  As her song ends, the camp fire extinguishes itself with a loud hiss. 

[JadedDM]: A thick, dark smoke begins to rise from the extinguished fire, reducing visibility to all present to two feet.  (Everyone roll a saving throw.)

[Lon]: [1d20] -> [9] = (9)

[Viarra]: [1d20] -> [16] = (16)

[Psyche]: [1d20] -> [20] = (20)

[JadedDM]: In the thick smoke, many of Magnus' men shout out in confusion or annoyance.  You can even hear a few horses bucking or neighing nervously.

[JadedDM]: Lon's turn.

[Lon]: [1d20-2] -> [7,-2] = (5)

[Lon]: Coughing through the smoke, Lon makes a literally blind throw and misses his target completely.

[JadedDM]: Terrah's turn.

[JadedDM]: Terrah fires an arrow out high, but it was too high and flew into the sky instead.

[JadedDM]: Nari's turn.

[JadedDM]: Nari charges up to Magnus and grabs at him, trying to pull him down from his horse.  However, he manages to bat her away, knocking her to the ground.

[JadedDM]: Guards' Turn.

[JadedDM]: The guards attempt to maneuver their horses to surround the party, despite the smoke in their way.

[JadedDM]: Magnus' turn.

[JadedDM]: Despite being almost blind, the Red Ram rides toward the fallen Nari, swinging the sword low with one hand and cutting her slightly across her leg as she's down.

[JadedDM]: Tugh's turn.

[JadedDM]: The goblin readies her lasso and attempts to ensnare one of the guards, but she doesn't throw the loop far enough and it falls short.

[JadedDM]: Terrah's turn.

[JadedDM]: Terrah lets loose another arrow, but this one flies forward and hits nothing but air.

[JadedDM]: (Round 2:  Actions?)

[Psyche]: Psyche starts chanting again.

[Lon]: Lon just defends.

[Viarra]: Viarra clears her throat and begins to sing. 

[Psyche]: [1d10] -> [3] = (3)

[Viarra]: [1d10] -> [4] = (4)

[JadedDM]: Viarra's turn.

[Viarra]: Viarra's song this time is a song about a talking horse named Mr. Ed and his loving handler (his perhaps too loving handler?)

[JadedDM]: Suddenly, Viarra screams at the top of her lungs--however, the sound emits from the middle of the enemy.  The horses are slightly startled, and the guards must spend a round claming them back down.

[JadedDM]: Psyche's turn.

[Psyche]: Psyche's hands begin to glow an eerie black color as she chants. Before long, she reaches out to try and grab Magnus.

[Psyche]: [1d20-1] -> [19,-1] = (18)

[Psyche]: [3d6] -> [5,1,5] = (11)

[Psyche]: Psyche grabs hold of Magnus' leg, the black glow surrounding the red ram knight for a moment, draining a bit of his strength.

[JadedDM]: Guards' turn.

[JadedDM]: They attempt to get their horses calm again.

[JadedDM]: Nari's turn.

[JadedDM]: Nari gets up, comes up on the other side of Magnus, and manages to drag the knight off of the horse and onto the ground.  The horse runs off, startled.

[JadedDM]: Magnus' turn.

[JadedDM]: Quickly getting back on his feet, Magnus turns Nari's sword against her and scores a cut across her cheek before the young woman can move out of the way.

[JadedDM]: Terrah's turn.

[JadedDM]: Terrah lets another arrow fly through the smoke, but this one strikes true.  A guard falls off her horse, which then trots to a safe distance out of the smoke.

[JadedDM]: Tugh's turn.

[JadedDM]: The goblin manages to lasso one of the scrawnier looking guards and yanks him off of his horse.  He hits the ground and falls unconscious.

[JadedDM]: Magnus' turn.

[JadedDM]: Magnus slashes toward Nari, both hands on the sword, but she is able to roll out of the way.

[JadedDM]: Terrah's turn.

[JadedDM]: Terrah takes out another guard with her second arrow, dropping him to the ground.

[JadedDM]: (Round 3:  The smoke is still there.  Magnus is dismounted and there are only four horsemen left now.  Actions?)

[Psyche]: Psyche says a small little rhyme to conjure up a glass rod.

[Lon]: ((How's visibility? Is it even possible to see anything?))

[JadedDM]: (Visibility is still about two feet.)

[Lon]: Lon, still trying to clear out the smoke from his eyes, defends against anything that moves to near.

[Psyche]: [1d10] -> [10] = (10)

[Viarra]: [1d10] -> [6] = (6)

[JadedDM]: Guards' turn.

[JadedDM]: The four remaining guards attempt to circle the party.  One goes for Lon, one goes for Psyche, one for Terrah, and one for Tugh.  The first rides by Lon, swinging low to strike, but the young thief blocks the attack with his staff.  The second does likewise to Psyche, but her magical shield guards her.  The third slashes across Terrah's back, causing a nasty red gash; she cries out in pain.  The final one slices deeply into Tugh's shoulder, severely wounding the goblin.

[JadedDM]: Viarra's turn.

[Psyche]: Psyche hears the cries of pain and she winces. "Okay...that is enough! We will go!"

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Like hell we will!"

[Lon]: "Terrah! Tugh!"

[Viarra]: Viarra takes a deep breath and begins to sing as song about the creation of Gonto's eyes. 

[JadedDM]: A swarm of lights surround the bardess and then come together to form a humanoid like creature.  However, this seems to have little effect as the smoke effectively conceals it.

[Psyche]: "Nari, no one is going to die this day, do you understand me?!"

[JadedDM]: Nari's turn.

[JadedDM]: Nari shouts out a battle cry and swings a fist right into Magnus' nose.  There's a loud crack, and the warrior clumsily steps back, nearly losing consciousness before shaking it off.  He wipes some blood from his nose.

[JadedDM]: Magnus' turn.

[JadedDM]: Magnus:  "Bitch...I'll see you suffer for that!"  He swings her grandfather's sword in a forward arc, slicing across the bandages Terrah had applied and making a second cut in the same spot.  However, Nari does not seem to even be slowed down by this.

[JadedDM]: Terrah's turn.

[JadedDM]: Terrah pulls out another arrow, takes aim at the rider that struck Tugh, and fires.  The arrow slips through the rider's neck and brings her down as the horse trots away.

[JadedDM]: Psyche's turn.

[Psyche]: Psyche says her small rhyme to conjure up a glass rod quickly.

[Psyche]: [1d10] -> [4] = (4)

[Psyche]: [1d20] -> [10] = (10)

[Psyche]: Psyche pulls out a glass rod from out of mid-air.

[JadedDM]: Tugh's turn.

[JadedDM]: The goblin quickly scampers to the horses, seeking cover.

[JadedDM]: Terrah's turn.

[JadedDM]: Terrah fires off another arrow, but this one bounces off a guard's armor instead.

[JadedDM]: (Round 4:  There are three horsemen remaining, plus Magnus.  The smoke is still present.  Actions?)

[Lon]: Motivated by the cries of pain, Lon will try to move toward the sound of Magnus' voice and attack him.

[Psyche]: Psyche runs over towards Tugh's direction. "Tugh, get your horse brush. I need the hair off of it, now."

[Viarra]: Viarra begins to sing a song about the beauty and grace of birds. 

[Psyche]: [1d10] -> [7] = (7)

[Lon]: [1d10] -> [3] = (3)

[Viarra]: [1d10] -> [9] = (9)

[JadedDM]: Terrah's turn.

[JadedDM]: Terrah quickly hurries to the wounded Tugh and attempts to bandage her up.

[JadedDM]: Lon's turn.

[Lon]: [1d20-2] -> [8,-2] = (6)

[Lon]: Lon swings his staff towards where he thought he saw the armored figure of Magnus, but the swing goes wide and hits only air.

[JadedDM]: Nari's turn.

[JadedDM]: Nari swings again, striking Magnus with a glancing blow.

[JadedDM]: Psyche's turn.

[Psyche]: Psyche runs over to where Tugh and Terrah are, pulling out a few spell components as she reaches them. "Nari, Lon, Viarra. Get over here!" she calls out to them as she prepares her spell.

[JadedDM]: Viarra's turn.

[Viarra]: Viarra's soft song begins to culminate, and towards the end of her song, the birds fly off, happily into the sunset. 

[Viarra]: [1d20] -> [3] = (3)

[Viarra]: Viarra soars into the air, looking for a horseman to attempt to knock off, but misses by a long shot. 

[JadedDM]: Guards' turn.

[JadedDM]: The first guard comes for Lon, but misses by several feet due to the smoke.  The second guard goes for Psyche, and cuts her across the side as he passes by.  The third, which was just missed by a flying bard, attempts to find Terrah and Tugh in the smoke, but fails.

[Psyche]: Psyche winces as the sword cuts into her.

[JadedDM]: Magnus' turn.

[JadedDM]: The Red Ram feints to the right, then stabs, but Nari stumbles at the last second out of the way, by accident.

[JadedDM]: Magnus' turn.

[JadedDM]: Angered by her dumb luck, the Red Ram swings again at her neck, but Nari is able to duck in time.

[JadedDM]: (Round 5:  There are still three horsemen remaining.  Viarra is airborne, and Tugh and Terrah have sought cover.  The smoke is still persisting.  Actions?)

[Lon]: Lon still attempts to attack Magnus.

[Viarra]: Viarra, still airborne, looks for another horseman to launch herself at. 

[Psyche]: Psyche starts chanting the words to her spell.

[Psyche]: [1d10] -> [1] = (1)

[Viarra]: [1d10] -> [9] = (9)

[Lon]: [1d10] -> [6] = (6)

[JadedDM]: Psyche's turn.

[Psyche]: Psyche holds out the glass rod she summoned earlier and rubs a bit of animal fur upon it, creating an electric charge which seems to crackle around her fingertips before shooting out towards Magnus.

[Psyche]: [7d6] -> [1,1,2,1,2,6,1] = (14)

[JadedDM]: The bolt of lightning arcs forward, passing by Lon so closely he feels all his hairs stand up on end.  It strikes Magnus with a violent force, causing him to drop his sword and be thrown backward.  Although his red armor is smoking, he still manages to get back up on his feet, groaning in pain.

[JadedDM]: Lon's turn.

[Lon]: [1d20-2] -> [1,-2] = (-1)

[Lon]: Jarred by the lightning bolt just missing him by inches, he swings the staff, but lets go reflexively, sending the staff flying.

[JadedDM]: Nari's turn.

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Whoa!  I forgot she could do that," she exclaims, then rushes forward, giving Magnus a right hook across the chin.  The warrior slumps to his knees, but isn't dead yet.

[JadedDM]: Viarra's turn.

[Viarra]: [1d20] -> [6] = (6)

[Viarra]: Viarra finds another horseman and launches herself at him, but neatly sails over his head. 

[JadedDM]: Guards' turn.

[JadedDM]: The guards, seeing their leader get the shoe polish beaten out of him, decide they aren't being paid enough for this and ride off, leaving Magnus to his fate.

[JadedDM]: Nari picks up her grandfather's sword and tries to wave the smoke away from her.  "I hear them retreating!" she calls to the others.

[Lon]: "We can't let them escape!" Lon cries back.

[Psyche]: Psyche takes a deep breath upon hearing the horses leave. "Let them go." She looks over her shoulder to Tugh and Terrah. "Are you two okay?"

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "You got an idea?  Because I'm blind and hurt," she says, coughing out the last word.

[JadedDM]: After a couple of minutes, the smoke finally clears.  There are several dead guards lying about the camp.  Magnus is still on his knees, breathing heavily.  Nari has her sword's blade resting on his shoulder, almost like she was knighting him.

[Psyche]: Psyche looks over to Nari and Magnus. "Nari...," she walks over to that direction.

[JadedDM]: Terrah and Tugh emerge from hiding.  The goblin is patched up a bit, but doesn't look too happy.

[Lon]: After a few minutes of coughing, Lon retrieves his staff.

[Psyche]: Psyche kneels down in front of the knight while Nari holds the sword to him. "If you truly did gut him as you say, where did you put his body?"

[JadedDM]: The older warrior manages to raise his head to glare at Psyche hatefully.  "I...burned it to cinders," he hisses at her, sweat covering his brow.

[Psyche]: "How can I believe you when you provide me with no proof?"

[JadedDM]: Magnus:  He grins darkly, despite the pain.  "This."  He tosses a strange necklace that seems to be made of bone to the ground--the same necklace Christophe always wore.

[Psyche]: Psyche slowly picks up the necklace, looking it over.

[Viarra]: While the others are talking to Magnus, Viarra goes over to the other horsemen and begins to search their bodies, hovering lightly over them. 

[Lon]: "Ps-Psyche... Is that?"

[Psyche]: Psyche takes a deep, shuddering breath and stands up fully. "It is, Lon."

[Viarra]: Viarra strips one guard of his chain mail, long sword, wineskin, rations and some silver pieces.  Her face is blank as she does this;  it doesn't look like handling and robbing dead bodies bothers her one bit.  Once she has finished with the first dead body, she moves on to the next one. 

[JadedDM]: Magnus:  "So....Miss Firesong...have you truly cast your lot in with these scoundrels?  I cannot believe a woman of your caliber would betray the Governor so easily..," he grunts out, holding his chest in pain.

[Viarra]: "Kill him all ready, will you?" Viarra asks. "Sorry about the whole being on the other sides thing, Magnus, you were always real nice to me and all, but evil is kind of stupid,” Viarra says, not looking up from her pillaging of the bodies. 

[Psyche]: "We aren't going to kill him. Let him go, Nari. He knows he has been beaten, and killing him now when he is at our mercy is not something Azedeth would teach."

[Viarra]: "My gods have no such restrictions," Viarra perkily volunteers. 

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "He doesn't deserve to die with honor."  She hefts her sword and slams the butt of the sheath across Magnus' face, knocking him out.

[Psyche]: "Even if your God doesn't have such restrictions, it isn't what the New Dawn is about."

[Viarra]: Viarra shrugs.  "Up to you." 

[Lon]: "Well, we can't take him with us. He's far too dangerous," Lon says.

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "He can return to the Governor and tell him he failed.  I'd say he's dead anyway, but he IS the Governor's brother, so...who knows?"

[Viarra]: "I expect that his riders will come back for him."  Viarra yawns.  "I say we get out of here before they do." 

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "First, I need some armor.  At least I have grandfather's sword back."

[Psyche]: Psyche nods at Nari's words. "Come looks as if we are too late for Christophe." Psyche holds the necklace in her hands, shaking her head sadly as she walks over to Snow Dancer.

[Viarra]: "Help yourself."  Viarra nods to the dead.  "And how do we know that Magnus wasn't lying?  He could have easily taken that necklace off of Christophe alive," Viarra points out to Psyche.

[JadedDM]: After a few moments, Nari manages to strip one of the female guards of her chain mail and put it on.  "This will do for now.  At least it isn't Bloodguard armor."

[Psyche]: Psyche mounts up on Snow Dancer. "I didn't say we wouldn't go back to Mudde to look for him."

[Lon]: "We shouldn't let him leave, able to strike at us again. We should break his sword hand," Lon says, glaring at the unconscious man.

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "He's dead, Psyche.  I think you're just chasing ghosts at this point.  Besides, we're too wounded to try and go back now.  Tugh and Terrah are both hurt, and I'm not looking so good myself."

[Viarra]: Viarra simply listens to the others, while she strips a female guard of her silver, rations, chain mail and long sword. 

[Psyche]: Psyche looks at Lon. "Leave him be, Lon."  She then looks over to Nari. "We only have this necklace as proof, and I could have easily caused the burn marks on this necklace with my spell."

[JadedDM]: Terrah:  "Why would he lie?"

[Viarra]: "Out of malice."  Viarra volunteers easily.

[JadedDM]: After several minutes, Viarra manages to compile a nice little pile of armor, weapons, supplies and money.

[Psyche]: "It is possible. Though, Nari has a point as well. Three of us are badly wounded and we will need rest."

[Viarra]: "Then we should split up.  They can rest and we'll look." 

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Magnus is a bastard, but he killed the head slave without a second thought.  He only took me alive because the Governor wanted him to."

[Psyche]: "I doubt the Governor would want a Rebel dead and Christophe does hold quite a bit of information. I don't think he is dead." Psyche sighs. "Lon, Viarra, and I can go back to Mudde. Nari, take Terrah and Tugh back to Janus and rest up there okay?"

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Didn't you say earlier that you two would be recognized there?"

[Viarra]: "I have that invisibility spell and lots of room to memorize it in, now.  I'll cast it when we get closer." 

[Psyche]: "And I also have an invisibility spell. Lon is probably the only one who wouldn't be recognized."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "He will now.  The guards just saw him."

[Lon]: Lon looks away from Magnus. "We don't know that. Those guards escaped, after all."

[Psyche]: "I can send him with you then, Nari. I'm not just going to give up on him, Nari just like I'm not going to give up on finding my niece, or Draven or Kestrel."

[JadedDM]: Tugh groans and puts her hands on her head.  "Even if you two can make it inside the town without being caught, how are you going to find the shol'va, even if he is alive?  And how will you get him out?"

[Lon]: "We can't rely solely on this 'spell,' Psyche." Brandishing his dagger, he asks, "How far are you two willing to go? Would you…cut your hair?"

[Viarra]: Viarra gasps as she drops her loot.  "Never!"  She looks at Lon as though he is the Overlord himself. 

[Lon]: Lon looks on, unamused at Viarra's theatrics.

[Psyche]: Psyche rubs her face before she glances over her shoulder in the direction of Mudde. "He'll never forgive me if he is alive," she mutters. "All right, we will head to Janus."

[Viarra]: Viarra continues to stare at Lon for a few moments before recomposing herself and beginning to load up Fluffy. 

[JadedDM]: (You know, standard chain mail armor weighs 40 lbs.  How are you going to load four of them on your horse?)

[Viarra]: (Ok, so she puts one on, and loads up the rest with whatever Fluffy can handle.)

[Lon]: Lon narrows his eyes and mutters in low tones under his breath.

[JadedDM]: (I'd rule that, without a wagon or anything like that, there's no room for any armor at all on the horse.  She's all ready got a bedroll, iron pot, and tent strapped to the poor thing.  And these horses are bred for speed, not carrying capacity.)

[Viarra]: (That's fine.  She can leave it.)

[Psyche]: "Come on, everyone," Psyche mutters as she nudges Snow Dancer to a trot.

[Viarra]: Viarra finishes loading Fluffy up with whatever he can carry and mounts the poor horse, nudging him into a trot. 

[JadedDM]: Terrah helps Tugh mount Valora, and then gets upon Earthshaker.  Nari mounts Sorza and the three silently follow after them.

[Lon]: Lon mounts Glas, silent throughout the journey.

[JadedDM]: The party travels throughout the day, trying to put as much distance between themselves and Mudde as possible.  Time passes, and it's now mid-afternoon.  In a few hours, the party will have to make camp.  It's a quiet and calm day, and quite sunny.  This makes seeing the goblins in armor riding large wolves easy to spot from a distance.

[Psyche]: Psyche pulls Snow Dancer to a halt as she notices the goblins, in which she raises an eyebrow curiously.

[Lon]: Lon follows the others' leads and stops, waiting uneasily atop Glas, wondering what this new development holds.

[Viarra]: Viarra, noticing Psyche and her horse come to a halt, stops humming a light tune and pulls Fluffy to a stop.  Fluffy tries to rub up against the nearest horse, and Viarra tries to stop him. 

[JadedDM]: There are eight goblin riders, and they approach slowly and then come to a halt when their leader gestures to them.  The worgs they are riding seem domesticated, even wearing saddles and bits and bridles.  The goblins themselves are armed in black chain mail and have small shields strapped to their back.

[JadedDM]: Goblin Leader:  "Halt!  We would have words with you, strangers!"

[Psyche]: "Words with us?" Psyche asks. "What is it you wish to speak to us about?"

[JadedDM]: Goblin Leader:  "I am called Croke, and we are the Chappa Slavehunters.  Have you seen a Slave in these parts?  He vanished from our temple about three days ago."

[JadedDM]: Nari audibly grits her teeth as she grasps her horses' reins tightly in her hands.

[Psyche]: "We haven't seen any slaves running around here."

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "Ehh?  No?  Are you certain?  The slave was human.  You are human.  Coincidence?  Hrmmm?" he asks, squinting up at the party, as if the sunlight bothered him.

[Psyche]: "Just because we are human does not mean we would know where your slave is. Honestly, we have not seen a human slave in these parts."

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "Hmm?  Hmmm!   Hmmmm?!" he mumbles, eyeing Psyche up and down, as if searching for some hidden deception.  "And the rest of you?"

[Lon]: "What was his name? We'll keep a lookout for him," Lon offers.

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "Hmmm?  His name?  His name was...uhhhh....," he looks back to his men, who just shrug unhelpfully.  He looks back to Lon.  "He is a slave.  His name is unimportant!"

[Viarra]: "What did he look like?" Viarra asks, a tone of disinterest present in her voice.

[JadedDM]: One of the other goblins, a rather scrawny looking fellow, looks to Viarra and his eyes light up.  "Ooooh, I know her!  I saw her sing in Mudde!"

[Viarra]: Viarra smiles at her fan. 

[JadedDM]: Croke turns violently toward his companion.  "What?!  Squib?!  What were you doing listening to singers?  Ehh?"

[JadedDM]: Squib:  "Uh, uh, uh, uh....well, we were in Mudde, like you ordered, looking for the slave, boss..."

[Viarra]: "He was displaying good taste," Viarra haughtily says. 

[Psyche]: Psyche clears her throat.

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "And you have time to hear performances?  Eh?  Why I oughta....," he threatens, waving his fist at the scrawny goblin, who ducks in fear.

[Psyche]: "Well, um, you said you were from Chappa?"

[JadedDM]: Croke turns back to Psyche and his eyes widen.  "What?  You sure seem to know a lot about us for some reason.  Mighty suspicious..."

[Psyche]: "Not really suspicious. I've spent some time with your race. Though I do have a question to ask you if you don't mind."

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "Hmmm?  Ask your question, human.  My mind is ready for any such query--like a cat about to pounce!" he exclaims, waving his arms wildly to emphasize his point.

[Psyche]: "Right...have you ever heard of something called the halo?"

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "What?  That is no challenge at all.  Of course.  A halo is a ring of light.  I am not stupid.  That is an ugly goblin stereotype," he insists.

[Psyche]: "I didn't say a halo. I said the halo. There is a small difference."

[JadedDM]: Squib:  "Look, boss.  They got a goblin with them, too," he says, pointing to Tugh.

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "Ahhhh!  Excellent detective work, Squib!  You'll make corporal for this!"

[JadedDM]: Squib:  "But...boss, I all ready am a corporal...."

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "Silence, Squib!  Or I shall bust you down to corporal so fast, your ugly head will spin!"  He then looks to Tugh.  "You, boy!  Have you seen a human slave in this vicinity?"

[JadedDM]: Tugh's cheeks flush and she looks down at her horse's head.  "I am....a girl," she says.

[Psyche]: "I should have just kept moving," Psyche mutters to herself.

[JadedDM]: Croke:  "Wha?  Hmmm?!  Hahahahaha!  A girl?  No wonder you travel with the tar!  You have the figure of a boy!  That is humorous!”  He laughs to himself for a moment, then angrily waves his fists at his men, who quickly join in with him, laughing.

[Lon]: "Hey, come on, leave her alone."

[Psyche]: "All right. I think that is enough now. If we see your slave, we will return him, but if that is all, we really must be on our way."

[Viarra]: Viarra's eyes angrily narrowed at the goblins.  "Why she travels with us is not your concern."

[JadedDM]: Croke snorts.  "Enough of this.  You are holding up our search.  Men, move out!"  He gestures to the others, who follow after him.  The exception is Squib, who strays behind a bit, occasionally casting curious glances to Tugh.

[Psyche]: Psyche rolls her eyes, glancing over to Tugh. "Are you all right?"

[JadedDM]: Tugh nods, keeping her head down.

[Viarra]: Viarra glances curiously at her, then after the pack of goblins, making sure that they are well on their way.  "Nothing to see here," she cheerily calls out to the remaining one. 

[Psyche]: Psyche nudges Snow Dancer forward again shaking her head.

[JadedDM]: Squib quickly kicks his worg lightly, and speeds off after the others.

[JadedDM]: Terrah:  "I think that goblin was a little...eccentric," she says.

[Viarra]: "You're too good for the likes of them, anyway," Viarra whispers to Tugh. 

[JadedDM]: Once Tugh is certain they are gone, she finally rises her head.  She smiles a bit to Viarra and nods.

[Psyche]: "If they actually think I'm going to return a slave to them, they are insane."

[Viarra]: Viarra smiles encouragingly at Tugh and nudges Fluffy into motion. 

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "He was a few swords short of an armory, if you ask me," she says, shaking her head.

[Psyche]: Psyche giggles softly at Nari as she leads the group onwards.

[JadedDM]: Another day of travel goes by, and it's the evening of Bludsin the 1st when they arrive in the small village of Janus .  As soon as they approach, a pair of Bloodguard stops them from entering.  "What business do you have here?" one asks.

[Psyche]: Psyche pulls Snow Dance to a stop upon seeing the Bloodguard. "We just need a place to stay for the night."

[JadedDM]: Bloodguard:  He looks the party over, and then looks to Lon.  "This your harem or something, son?" he jokes, noticing he's the only male in the group.

[Lon]: Lon looks sullenly at the Bloodguard. 'What?"

[JadedDM]: The guard laughs.  "Go on, go on.  The town is under martial alert, though, so no funny stuff."

[Psyche]: "Martial alert? What for?"

[Viarra]: "How come?" Viarra asks with a smile.  "Anything us little women should be scared of?"

[JadedDM]: Bloodguard:  "A crazy woman tried to use magic to brainwash the town.  It's under control now, but the Bloodguard are here to help reinforce the peace until the Baroness can get things under control again."

[Psyche]: "Ah...I see." Psyche nods to the Bloodguard before she has Snow Dancer trot into the village, heading towards the tavern.

[Viarra]: "Thanks!" Viarra cheerily calls over her shoulder as she follows after Psyche. 

[JadedDM]: Janus is a small village that's roughly square-shaped, as if someone specifically designed it that way.  It sits right next to the Baroness' massive plantation, which is protected by a large wall that encircles it.  As the party walks to the tavern, the Twin Coin Inn, they notice quite a few Bloodguard and Janus guards wandering the streets.  Although the party gets a few looks, nobody stops them.

[Psyche]: "I'm not sure this is a good thing or a bad thing," Psyche says as she dismounts in front of the inn. "At least they aren't under Ladonna's control anymore."

[Viarra]: "Who?" Viarra asks as she slides off of Fluffy. 

[Lon]: "Well, at least we don't have to wear those robes."

[Psyche]: "Ladonna. She was the crazy woman that had this town brainwashed. Before we came to Mudde, we actually are the ones who helped this town."

[Viarra]: "I see," Viarra says.

[Psyche]: "Of course, if the New Dawn actually got the credit for it, I'm not sure."

[Viarra]: "I guess we'll find out." 

[JadedDM]: Tugh starts to tie the horses up outside as the others step into the tavern.  The party enters the comfortable lobby and then from there, steps into the tap room to the right.  An older woman is tending the bar, while a much younger girl is serving tables.  One table holds two humans, a goblin, and a half-ogre.  Another table holds a pair of men that seem to be drowning themselves in booze.  At the bar, two young men sit and talk to each other about local events.

[Psyche]: Psyche looks around the inn, smiling a bit before she finds a table to sit down at and waves the younger girl over.

[Viarra]: Viarra overhears snatches of the young men’s conversation.  She sits a few seats away from them at the bar and signals for the barmaid. 

[JadedDM]: Bar Patron 1:  "I'm telling you, it looked like a snake.  Why would my father make that up?"

[JadedDM]: Bar Patron 2:  "I'm not saying he's lying.  I'm just saying, my cousin saw a monkey-like thing.  That's all."

[JadedDM]: The young barmaid notices the party right away, but hesitates in approaching.  Once she's at their table, she lowers her voice.  "Hello...Psyche."

[Lon]: Lon sits down at the table as well, leaning into the chair, and massaging the soreness from riding for so many days.

[JadedDM]: Terrah sits next to Lon, and Nari sits next to Psyche.

[Psyche]: Psyche keeps her voice low. "Evening, Brook. I'm glad to see you are okay."

[JadedDM]: The older woman behind the bar approaches Viarra.  "Yeah, what'll you have, young lady?"

[JadedDM]: Brook:  "Uh...thanks.  I wasn't really myself."

[Psyche]: "I know you weren't. I understand." Psyche offers her a small smile. "How are things now though?"

[Viarra]: "A mug of ale, if it isn't too much of a bother."  Viarra smiles at the barmaid.  "And I was wondering if I could ask a question." 

[JadedDM]: Old Barmaid:  "Ask away, miss," she says, filling up a clean mug with ale from a keg under the bar.  She sets the mug before the bardess.  "Two silver."

[JadedDM]: Brook blushes a bit.  "Everyone's kind of trying to pretend it never happened.  My own memories are kind of blurry, myself.  I think I did some things I shouldn't have."  She scratches at her cheek.

[Viarra]: Viarra sets four silver pieces on the bar.  "I was wondering if you would mind too terribly if I sang here from time to time.  I'm really not all that bad," she says with a smile. 

[Psyche]: "Don't worry about it too much. At least the town is safe and all of you can move on with your lives. Um, have you heard what has happened?" Psyche asks softly.

[JadedDM]: Old Barmaid:  "You a performer, are you?" she asks skeptically.

[JadedDM]: Brook:  "You mean...uh, yes," she says, looking around to make sure nobody was watching or listening in.  "I thought you were all dead.  That was the news, anyway."

[Viarra]: "Yes, ma'am," Viarra says, eyes wide.  "I promise you'll like my singing, and if you don't, I'll stop as soon as you tell me.  But, I think you'll find that it'll increase your business." 

[Psyche]: "Well, we are proof that we aren't all dead. We have changed our name, and I was hoping that you would still be willing to help us out when you can." Psyche continues to speak softly.

[JadedDM]: Brook:  "Jerros is alive then?" she asks, perhaps sounding a bit too hopeful.

[JadedDM]: Barmaid:  "What's your name, dear?" she asks.

[Psyche]: Psyche holds out her hand showing her Jerros ring. "I hope he is, but I'm not sure."

[Viarra]: "Viarra Firesong."  Viarra smiles again.  "What's yours?" 

[JadedDM]: Barmaid:  "Chelle Sunsoul.  Hey, wait...I know that name.  Yeah, I think I've heard of you before.  Some people from Mudde passed by here, talking about you."

[JadedDM]: Brook smiles at the possibility.  "I hope so, too."

[Viarra]: "It's nice to meet you, Miss Sunsoul."  Viarra nods.  "And I hope that they didn't say anything too bad." 

[Psyche]: Psyche smiles a bit sadly before she looks to the others. "Um would any of you like something to drink?"

[Lon]: Lon squints suspiciously. "Water." He unconsciously puts his hand to his stomach, remembering the last time he drank the water here.

[JadedDM]: Barmaid:  "Mrs...although, my husband passed on some time ago."  She wipes her hands off on her apron.  "No, I heard you were quite good.  If you want to perform here, that's fine by me.  My tavern isn't too fancy,'s better than some."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "I'm fine."

[JadedDM]: Terrah:  "I, too, would like some water, please."

[JadedDM]: Brook nods.  "Okay.  But, you said something about helping you, Psyche?"

[Viarra]: "Excuse my slip, Mrs. Sunsoul, and I'm sorry to hear about your loss.  Thank you for the opportunity;  I promise you won't be disappointed." 

[JadedDM]: Chelle nods.  "We could use the business.  After...well, let's just say that things have been kind of crazy around here lately.  Strange sightings and noises in the night.  Driving people away, if you know what I mean."

[Psyche]: "Not right now. I just wanted to make sure you would still be around if we ever needed you. Oh...and our name...we are now the New Dawn."

[JadedDM]: Brook:  "Right.  I'll be right back."  She heads to the bar to get their drinks.

[Viarra]: "What's been happening?"  Viarra asks, leaning on the bar with interest. 

[JadedDM]: Chelle:  "Well, mostly just hearsay, mind you.  But there have been lots of sightings of real strange creatures.  Every person's description is different, so not sure if they're real or not."

[Viarra]: "That surely is odd."  Viarra agreed.  "How many people have seen these things?" 

[Psyche]: Psyche takes a look around the bar again before looking to Nari. "He could be alive, couldn't he?"

[JadedDM]: Chelle:  "A handful.  I think most of the rumors are getting passed and exaggerated now, though," she says, gesturing to the two young men arguing.

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Jerros?"

[Psyche]: Psyche nods.

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "You bet!  You saw him in the fight with the Overlord's men.  Nothing could stop Jerros.  He's out there, like the others.  I'm sure of it."

[Viarra]: "You're probably right."  Viarra says as glances at the two men and takes a swig of ale.  "Have you two seen it?" she asked them. 

[JadedDM]: Bar Patron 1:  He turns to Viarra.  ", but my dad saw it.  A snake-like creature, red as the moon and covered in flames."

[JadedDM]: Bar Patron 2:  "No, my cousin saw it.  It was a little monkey thing with sharp teeth and red fur."

[Viarra]: "What did it do?" Viarra asked the three of them. 

[Psyche]: "I hope so." Psyche looks down at the table in thought.

[JadedDM]: Bar Patron 1:  "It bit him!  Oh, don't worry.  He's fine.  It just stunned him."

[JadedDM]: Bar Patron 2:  "It ran off when my cousin got close to it."

[JadedDM]: Nari:  "Have faith, Psyche.  Jerros was the strongest of us all.  If we made it, he did, too," she says with confidence.

[JadedDM]: Brook returns with Lon's and Terrah's water.

[Psyche]: "Even if he did make it, I don't think he would be in Renosia anymore though. He was leaving us to go help his brother before all of that happened."

[Viarra]: "Well, I'm glad to hear that your dad is fine and that your cousin got away unscathed."  Viarra smiles at them.  "How long ago did it show up?"

[Lon]: Lon takes the cup and downs the water.

[JadedDM]: Nari bites at her lip a bit.  "He wouldn't abandon us, Psyche.  He just...wouldn't," she says with a sense of finality.

[Lon]: "Thanks," he says to Brook.

[Psyche]: "Nari, he was leaving us. He said he would come back, but he was leaving us."

[JadedDM]: Nari's expression reflects that of a stubborn child who refuses to accept a mythological figure is not real.  She looks away and crosses her arms, almost in a pout.

[JadedDM]: Chelle:  "The rumors first started a couple of days ago, actually.  Well, the sightings, anyway.  The strange sounds at night started ever since the temple...vanished."

[Psyche]: "I know how you feel, Nari. I...I love the man and I want more than anything for him to be here now, but..." Psyche shrugs slightly.

[Viarra]: "The temple vanished?" Viarra asks, surprise etching her features. 

[JadedDM]: Chelle nods.  "About a week ago.  Nothing but a crater left.  Ever since then, people claim you can hear someone crying in the wind in that area."

[Viarra]: "I wonder if it's haunted...?"  Viarra muses aloud.  "Wouldn't that be something?" 

[Psyche]: "Well, I think I'm going to get some rest." Psyche stands from the table.

[JadedDM]: Chelle:  "I hope not. Last thing this place needs is a ghost to scare people off."

[Psyche]: Psyche walks over to the bar to get a key to one of the rooms.

[Viarra]: Viarra laughed.  "I expect you're right; you all ready have an odd creature to deal with."  She shrugs.  "I wonder how the temple vanished...?  Surely someone has to be responsible for it." 

[JadedDM]: Chelle:  "We, uh...really don't like talking about that around here."

[Viarra]: "I see.  Please forgive my inquisitiveness, Mrs. Sunsoul."  Viarra smiles easily. 

[Lon]: Lon looks down at his cup, rolling the last trickle of water around in it.

[JadedDM]: (All right, we'll call it a night here.)


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