The elves of the Callehad make a point to leave at sunset on the following day, so the companions continue to sew up the loose ends while still in Khalsbrad.
the First Paladin, Sir Dhalamus Cayne invites On’ogg to join him while he breaks his fast, where they wax philosophical on the nature of the Light. Sensing the radiant Gift with Ogg, he calls the orc to the Alabaster Citadel to continue his training with a more structured curriculum. Ogg decides to deny the appeal, at least for now, until he’s dealt with the pressing issue of Sytheria. Upset by the necessity of putting off this formal invitation, Ogg agrees to call upon the Aegis before they set out farther north.
Elbanor keeps his appointment with Nozzalthorp Frayfeather within the Tower of Solastarum, where the gnomish tinkerer begins grafting a gauntlet device in lieu of the cleric’s missing hand.
Akasha, Sayer the Swashbuckler and The Hand join Baatu and his friend Marobar Sul within the depleting company among the Black Star Tavern, where they trade stories for a time.
They then drop in to see Lord Boswell, who seems to have dropped into a governing position within the city. Though he chafes at the responsibility, he doesn’t appear to deny the position (temporary as he assumes it surely must be). They then make way to the apartments of Sir Zeliek, formally of the Minutemen militia of Khalsbrad. They find the building sealed off, under order of Commander Jules Maynard himself.
Within the meager chambers they find signs of what must have been a prolonged internment of a small person on a child sized bed. Nearby, they find pieces of what must have been a porcelain object. Within the room alongside, they find a larger bed next to an equipment rack bereft of any armor. There is the remains of a large rune beneath the child’s bed, burnt into the wood of the floor. It appears to be of the conjuring energy type. Within the room itself is the palpable feeling of dread, made thick by a faint miasma that is reminiscent of the magical hues of Khalsbrad during the Night of Lights. They destroy any remnants of the conjuration runes and depart.
The group convene within the Tower to find Elbanor, who is still undergoing his procedure. They find the scribes of the Aegis noticeably tense as they go about their charting. The calculations don’t seem entirely possible and the bring a sense of doom. The group meet with Frayfeather just as Wilhelm von Keurig is confronting the architect about what his own findings seem to forewarn. Apparently the fluctuation of the ley lines are destabilizing the very space that the Tower is founded upon, tearing at the normalized laws of physical normalcy.
Frayfeather seems unresponsive to such calculations from so obviously inept a source, but concedes that there are certain peculiarities gripping the area. The debate swiftly devolves into a half-sized brawl, complete with an array of flying projectiles. Tools, sprockets, small curiosities; anything not already bolted down was quickly taking flight between the gnomes.
Finding the Tower to be less safe a conference area by the moment, the companions secure a mid-procedural Elbanor from the worktable, as well as the two gnomes and make their way back out to the grounds around the Tower. On the way a series of lights and a tinny alarm begins sounding, they are pleased to see all within the Tower making as hasty an exit as they can.
With mere minutes to apparent meltdown, the Hand separates themself and makes a break for the private study of Master Madrygos. The Hand finds the librarian and warns the construct of the imminent arcane anomaly. The librarian attempts to relieve the Hand of their concern, explaining that it’s tethering to the study is not held in contempt, indeed it’s task gives the construct purpose. The Hand seems saddened, but concedes to Sora’s intention to stay with the Tower. The Hand quickly departs.
Within minutes, the Tower of Solastarum is consumed by arcane energy and folds in on itself, leaving a crater hewn into the ground itself, sporadically marked the offshoots of subterranean passageways. The crater is quickly filled water spilling in from Lake Edelweiss, flowing like a crashing torrent to consume the void area.
All those able watch in shock to see the spectacle; the whispers of small pockets of people made audible by the stark silence of the lost Tower.
The group fall back to the Callehad to again plan their course of action.
The next morning the companions set out to their own tasks. The Hand climbs to the top of the blimp and spends much of the morning and then afternoon contemplating all that they had learned. They notice much from the height, not least of which the bands of Knights of the Alabaster Aegis departing to the northwest. They also take notice of the blank canvas of the balloon with piqued interest.
Ogg calls upon Sir Osterrick within the counsel offices of the Khalsbrad Municipal chambers. He finds the Prefect going about the business of managing the city. Ogg communicates that the gravity of the death of Knight Raleigh is not lost on him, as Sir Osterrick suggests that the orc remember what happened when moving forward, to use it as a reminder of what brought him to this point and a catalyst to make the best of such an opportunity.
Sayer finds himself in a state of restlessness. Without the threat of imminent danger, his thoughts tend to settle back into disagreeable subjects. He seeks out some of his elvish friends aboard the Callehad and they depart to do some light sparring outside the city. Noticing his agitated state, they bring him on an afternoon hunt to slay a wild beast that is hounding travelers on the Fairfield road. They track the great beast into the craggy foothills of the Khalkist mountains and eventually slay the beast, bringing back a massive trophy to the crew.
Elbanor continues his procedure aboard the Callehad, well below deck.
Akasha approaches Nazeer about some personal dreams she had been experiencing, dating back a long time. They seemed all the more relevant now that she had gained the peculiar ability to change her shape into animals almost completely at will. Connecting the portents, the experienced magus demands her to delve it’s secrets. He brings her to his small chambers and begins the preparations to induce such exploration. She falls asleep and begins experiencing the dream again, though with much more lucidity than ever before.
In the dream she walks through the foreign yet familiar landscape of a dense forest, following a shallow creek that meanders into a deep pond. She hears faint rhythms of music, almost too soft to hear. She follows the edge of the water and is surprised to find herself among several figures, standing still as statues. She attempts to question the nearest, speaking in a language she knows but doesn’t recognize. The figure responds only by unfolding their hands from the depths of heavy robes, producing a sealed scroll and handing it to the bewildered young elf.
As she accepts, she finds herself consumed by an radiant energy, suffering somewhat from it’s white hot intensity. She falls, kicking and screaming. The pain wracks her body a moment before she finds herself being roused by Nazeer, back in his small cabin. The pain subsides, leaving no mark but it’s brief memory and even that seems less distressing as she remembers. Indeed, the events would likely be soon forgotten had she not held in her hand the scroll from the mysterious figure.
She reads the script as lines of a strange poem, knowing not what it means. She conveys it to Nazeer, who is also at a loss as to it’s meaning, though it signed as ‘Veridian Warden’ strikes him as noteworthy. He confesses himself unable to glean much, but suspects that he heard that moniker some time before. He dismisses the young elf, conveying a need to study his tomes and scrolls for more information.
Ogg and the Hand experiment with dunking their head in a deep barrel of rainwater. Sayer returns with the elvish hunters, prize in tow. There’s a peculiar scent of burning pipestuffs, but Sayer isn’t quite able to place it’s origin. Akasha visits Captain Castien Vauldra, who is in his cabin consulting charts and maps, plotting his course. Happy for her company, he continues his work as she plays him light music. Intrigued by the scroll, which she realized is as much musical notes and verse as it is the cryptic poem, plays the song as written.
All who hear, including those on the deck of the Callehad experience an intense lethargy, then fall into a deep slumber. Akasha herself is beset by the enchantment. Some time later, the knights of Noble Squad awaken the bewildered crew of the Callehad.
They had been delivering Aegis crates aboard the ship and found the strange scene at a time just before dusk. Ogg inquires of their status, as they seem to have insignificant tasks delegated to them on the regular. They appraise him of the merit system, which he finds interesting. He mentions that perhaps they could assist with the companion’s soon to be foray to the north.
Captain Castien, perturbed by the stoppage of work, took pains to reacquaint the crew to their tasks. The Callehad jostles a bit due to the tasks. From below deck, Wihelm von Keurig repremands those within earshot to steady the area, as exacting work was being performed on the cleric well below deck. None of the companions seen this as an oddity.
Within the hour they had taken flight, setting course for the Alabaster Citadel.