Gallen's Tale

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Gallen's Tale

Postby Kemian » Fri Jul 24, 2015 4:27 am

Once in a properly secure and safe setting Gallen attempts to explain what has happened since the last time Altair and Val made a trip to the Vale of the Running Horse. Gallen explains that since the pathways between his home world known as Wingard and Toril have been opened that extradimensional pathways and the stability of the material plane has been growing increasingly unstable. As a result, those from his world cut ties with Toril and have tried to prevent any trips between the two material planes.
As part of her education Annika made a trip to the shattered continent of Arumane to establish diplomatic ties with a race of Fae known as the Pritt, an ancient people that the races of the Vale of the Running Horse were reintroduced to as a result of a summoning by the Warlock Tahiri on the same trip that Altair and Val had been a part of. Annika and the Pritt, broke the no contact protocol with Toril to help the Pritt negotiate a peace a powerful Lung Shan of the Gray Waste, which thanks to the assistance of Tahiri, Rhyl, and Maera they were able to do so. Unfortunately even that brief contact and the act of crossing back and forth further destabilized reality and as a result Wingard was beginning to deal with increasingly more frequent and larger incursions from creatures that simply did not belong on the Prime Material plane.

Annika furthered her education and skills in her ambassador role with the Pritt but their influence also had begun to change the young ladies perspective on what would be needed to stop the incursions and stabilize reality. So after almost two years with the Pritt, when the acknowledged Lord of Vale of the Running Horse Baynard Brightblade died, Gallen stepped in to rule in his stead until Annika’s return from the Pritt lands. When Annika returned she immediately set about organizing not only the Vale of the Running Horse, but the surrounding lands which as it turned out were hungry for leadership and order. Six months after her return Annika was the acknowledged ruler of most of the continent on which the Vale of the Running Horse rested and she held a coronation declaring herself Queen.

Once she had secured her rulership Annika revealed her larger plan for how she planned to end the incursions, she planned to secure as many of the Gates as she could. The Gates are extadimensional pathways to the other Gate Worlds connected to Winguard. They are a source of mystical and esoteric energy as well as a source of trade and resources. Annika is convinced that to stop the influence of the one that first opened the path ways to Toril in the first place the so called Grey Walker Padrech De Shekineser and to stabilize Wingard that the Gates must be closed permanently.

While Gallen seems unwilling to elaborate further on what exactly Queen Annika intends to do to close the gates his counter part the enigmatic Assassin known as Nathan seems only too amused by the whole matter explains that Annika is convinced that a ritual sacrifice will provide the energies required to seal the gates something which Gallen desperately wishes to prevent for obvious reasons not the least of which is that he believes that not only will the ritual not work he believes it will back fire and actually further destabilize his world.
The disagreement between Gallen and his daughter has unfortunately become military in nature as the Queen’s troops attempt to gain control over enough gates to make the ritual possible while those loyal to Gallen have been attempting to prevent the Queen from gaining control of them. During the latest battle the queen managed to access an ability on Gallen’s Holy weapon which sent him to Waterdeep. Gallen is concerned that a simple attempt to cross back over will do harm to both realties and as such is requesting assistance getting to the Ethereal Plane so that he can contact his companion animal to coordinate a shift from the Ethereal Plane surrounding Toril to the Ethereal Plane surrounding Winguard and returning home from there making the transition less disruptive. Gallen then asks for Altair’s help in crossing over and trying to find a way to prevent Annika from performing her ritual and finally trying to find a way to stabilize his world once and for all.

(Feel free to either toss IC questions here or to forum PM me with questions you have.)
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby J.C. » Fri Jul 24, 2015 1:15 pm

*After sitting and listening to Gallen's story about his daughters rise to power, Val nods and clears his throat*

Gallen, I have no misgivings about coming to your aide, but there is one thing that has me a bit concerned. Say all the pathways between planes are closed and sealed, do you have a plan to return us to Toril, or is there something I am missing? From what you have said, and providing your daughter succeeds in closing down all the pathways, this could be a one-way trip for us.
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Arrow-Bolt » Fri Jul 24, 2015 4:47 pm

-Jirgaldai would express his sympathies to Gallen, but he would note publicly at his own rather useless skill set at the recent skirmish. He had only defeated one single foe, a lesser foe at that, so he cannot aid Gallen directly it seems.

But he would stay and transcribe the tales and conversations going on. A unique bit of knowledge this is. A copy he would make for his mentor at the Chapel of Denier-

==========

OOC: Thanks Kem for letting the lowbie chars in on the 1st part of this story line. ^^ And thanks for not turning us into 'Red 'Shirts' :P
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Kemian » Fri Jul 24, 2015 5:35 pm

To Val's point Gallen grimaces. "There is a risk...if she is successful and it does work, that you could be trapped for a time...possibly for a long time, however, both myself and Nathan who is...more experienced with extradimensional travel and with binding and invocational ritual magic believes that Annika is mistaken, he does not believe it will work he believes as do I that it will make matters worse.

To Jirgaldai, Gallen nodded. "I appreciate your candor, those of you that do not choose to go I would ask that you maintain vigilance, you have witnessed the precursor to these events and you know what they entail, it may be that when we leave these things continue to happen though hopefully not as large as the event that happened when I arrived. If you witness these things, you will need to alert the watch and your grey hands and try to contain anything that comes out of the rips in extradimensional space."
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Arrow-Bolt » Fri Jul 24, 2015 6:38 pm

-Jirgaldai would ask- Then it seems prudent to write up the knowledge gained by 1st hand witnessing these creatures and what is talked here and now? A copy should be given to the watch and the gray hands.

Perhaps you could also add a letter of introduction Altair? The watch and the gray hands will have a more difficult time ignoring your message, from the Steelmage, opposed to my own, a common civilian of Waterdeep.
Last edited by Arrow-Bolt on Fri Jul 24, 2015 8:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Ian » Fri Jul 24, 2015 8:03 pm

Altair notes that taking a group to the Ethereal Plane is not an intense feat of magic for him at this point, and there are no practical barriers to prevent him from making that happen.

He does have questions of his own, however. Val's is one. He adds others.

"First, what exactly is Annika looking to sacrifice to stabilize the plane? Next, and related: Who or what convinced her that would work? And what leads Nathan to believe that it won't?

"Also, is this a problem that could alternately be solved by just stabbing Shekineser in the face and calling it good? Difficulty aside, if that could work, it's an option to leave on the table.

"Oh, and on a side note, out of idle curiosity: How, for the love of Azuth's shimmering arse-hole, did it get to the point that disagreement on this between you and her led immediately to crossed swords?"
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Arrow-Bolt » Fri Jul 24, 2015 8:32 pm

-Jirgaldai will try again to ask Altair for a letter of introduction to the watch and the gray hands at the end of this meeting but before they all depart for the day-
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Kemian » Fri Jul 24, 2015 9:34 pm

Gallen grimaced at Altair's questions. "The answer to your first question should provide the answer to your third question. The first question requires some context."

"Annika is effectively the ruler of the entire continent of Segrunia where the Vale of the Running Horse occupies, she is also through ritual channeling ceremony linked and able to draw strength from the shattered continent of Arumane where the Pritt hold sway. Where I come from a ruler draws strength from the land upon which they rule and the land draws strength from the ruler. As such, Annika is able to draw strength from the entire northern hemisphere of the world of Winguard. As a result she believes that if she willingly sacrifced herself that the collective energy will be sufficient to seal the Gates."

Gallen added "Even if that were the case I cannot allow that to happen. I will not allow that to happen. So...it devolved into martial conflict relatively quickly. The reason Annika believes that her ritual will work is because she has been secretly worshiping a Pritt Demi God known as the Hidden One.

The creature responsible for freeing the Bright Lady Aru from when she was imprisoned. "The Hidden One was part of the group that created and founded Winguard as a sanctuary for those fleeing the effects of the Third Padrechian War. The Bright Lady Aru disagrees vehemently with this plan. Aru and the Hidden One are Brother and Sister so you can see how this matter gets complicated quickly."

At this point Nathan speaks up cutting Gallen off with an odd show of impatience. "None of that really matters, what matters is this, the Gates are the link to the Nexus, the place where the Gate Worlds can be created and linked to all the other Gate Worlds, it is a place of inspiration and creation, the act of the willful destruction of life especially one as powerful and vibrant as Queen Annika is anathema to the nature of the Gates and the Nexus itself. My fear is that the act would destabilize reality irrepairably.."

(There is more to come on this but I want to post this for now.)
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Kemian » Fri Jul 24, 2015 10:23 pm

Nathan then enters into what could be a lecturing posture. "Altair, you have indirectly named the larger problem. The Grey Walker Padrech De Shekineser is a very powerful entity over the last 10 millenia he has been both the destroyer and savior of the Gate Worlds in various forms and fashion. Since the fall of Tellus he has been the single largest agent of change and Entropy anyone has ever witnessed. He is not directly the problem.

Currently the Grey Walker is sane and stable and trying to make amends for past transgressions. The problem is the Staff of Empery, an Artifact that is his greatest asset. Unfortunately I have it on good authority that an intelligence has awakened within the staff that is actively working against Padrech's current efforts. Unfortunately the Staff and the wielder have become linked over time. It is likely impossible to destroy one without the destroying both."

At this point Gallen interjects. "Something that I would prefer to avoid because Padrech has millions of souls under his thrall the Wraiths of Empery, incorporeal memories of those that Padrech has wronged or killed over the years. I believe if Padrech and the staff are destroyed, those souls will be sundered and lost forever."

Gallen continued. "We believe the staff is using the Emperyian Wraiths to surrupticiously disrupt Padrech's efforts and destabilize reality. I have...a theory that if we can thwart the Staff without destroying it, the Padrech himself will be able to help stabilize reality and give him a chance, to salvage those souls that are linked to him. As well as being one with the power to send anyone that comes to help us back to Waterdeep without shredding reality entirely."
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Arrow-Bolt » Sat Jul 25, 2015 7:52 pm

-Jirgaldai transcribes the conversation and asks if there is a pause in the conversation- Is there anything directly you would tell to the watch and the gray hands Gallen about all this? How to best deal with forseeable troubles from all this?
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Stam » Sat Jul 25, 2015 9:16 pm

"Sacrificing herself for others. Heh," Susanna murmurs into one of the silences. "I think I've played that one for Dev before."

"So this isn't just a problem of helping you get home, is it. We need to go talk Anika out of the idea, then go visit this Grey Walker and try and convince him to let you fix his staff?"
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Kemian » Sat Jul 25, 2015 9:31 pm

To Jergaldai Gallen answers the question first.

"Nathan and I plan to address the local Lords of Waterdeep as well as you Guild of Adeptus Majorus...umm...your Wizards Guild."

"As for what is to be done...evacuate the innocent from any exposed area as quickly as possible. All of these creatures most basic desire to envelope and consume those of this plane and the more they consume the more powerful they become and some of them are able to corrupt those they consume and create...lesser versions of themselves in this process. These are creatures of pure mayhem and chaos, Axiomatic attacks work best, they are capable of...altering their own defenses based on the attacks that they encounter, Force Effects work second best after axiomatic effects, finally if you do use elemental attacks, rotate the type never use the same kind of attack twice in a row."

"Kill them quickly."
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Kemian » Sat Jul 25, 2015 9:39 pm

Gallen addresses Susanna next.

"If we can delay the advance of her control over one or two gates it will force her to delay her ritual. The longer my return is delayed, the less likely we will be able to effect that strategy. If we can delay her, then yes a trip to go and deal with the Grey Walker or more to the point deal with the Staff of Empery is the next step."


Nathan interjected, "That still does not address the larger issue which is...we don't know what can be done the staff to stop it from working it's will. By all accounts The Grey Walker is unaware of what the staff is doing and it may be working in obsequious ways to prevent anyone from making the Grey Walker realize that the staff has become sentient and filled with malignant purpose."
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Stam » Sat Jul 25, 2015 9:46 pm

"I talk to staves a little ... I haven't known any that talked back."

She's thoughtful for a bit.

"I have an unweaving spell, but I doubt it's enough to pick the threads out of something like that. Does your magic look like a woven weave of threads of power, too?"
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Re: Gallen's Tale

Postby Ian » Sat Jul 25, 2015 10:53 pm

"Okay, so stabbing Shekineser is out because he's actually a potential ally if he stays 'sane,'" Altair emphasizing the last word with an air-quote, "though that's unlikely because as soon as we start working against the staff, he'll see us as a threat."

"And breaking the staff itself is out anyway unless we devolve to something like Plan F, with Plan G being 'die horribly.' Doing so likely both strands us in the Vale and consigns a few million people to oblivion in the process of saving the plane. Got it."

He considers this. "One idea we could consider to stabilize things temporarily is the use of a particular ritual of my own as a replacement for Annika's hilariously awful one. If the nature of the Nexus is one of creativity and creation, then a genesis ritual could let us craft the local energies into something that grants us greater control over the gates--basically, instead of using it to make a new plane, we'd be trying to use it to patch up the current one. The ritual is typically slow enough that we'd not have time for it, but the latent sympathy of the Nexus could accelerate the process, at least buy us more time to deal with Shekineser's staff. Working theory. I have to sacrifice a goodly chunk of my essence to power that ritual, but I don't believe it would weaken me appreciably to give it a try."

He pauses. "If nothing else, it's a plausible idea to try swaying Annika from her course with. I'd rather not have to slap sense into the girl, after all--I actually like her."

"Unfortunately, I'm coming up blank on ideas for dealing with the staff. If it's as powerful as you're indicating, it will function even if I completely nullify the magic in the area around it. The only more powerful effects I have to deal with something like that would be stupidly risky--either disjoin it, hope it both works and doesn't obliterate my mind in the process, and hope that's not the same as destroying it outright, or imprison it, hope I'm powerful enough to make the effect stick, and hope we can convince Shekineser not to immediately free it. Otherwise, I think we're going to have to research and hope your libraries have something we can use, or our long-term options are pretty short."

"I wonder if I could disjoin not the staff, but its link to Shekineser..."

As he talks, he dashes off a quick note for Jirgaldai. The bearer of the accompanying note has faithfully transcribed our discussion of the extraplanar creatures currently posing a threat to the city of Waterdeep. Ask him for details as required, for he has seen them in battle, and take the included advice, or I will be most reproachful upon my return. --Regards, Altair Hadarmas

It's folded and sealed with black wax and a stamp bearing the Steelmage's sigil, an intricate thing difficult to forge, then laden with a matching arcane mark.
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