Author Topic: Chapter 5 - EFU: City of Rings Rumors & Gossip Thread  (Read 38019 times)

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on: December 20, 2021, 06:07:19 AM
[ :: Year 2 :: ]

The Pallid host, for a time now yet, has contested well Count Zarono Senuspur's  advance forward, much to his spiraling control of the Ward. While some might contest that Ring 94 and 93 brought a deep distain to light that was a nail in the coffee for his tenure in the Peerage, none can argue the complete damage and disconnect wrought by the events following up to and around the siege of the Pallid Plane of Bone, Ash, and Death:

-- Somewhere deep behind enemy lines, a small group has assembled.. --

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Ser Manfred Japes of House Orza”
[A begrudging voice.] In light of our agreements as the cinquefoil rose, House Orza and House Velstra have made an agreement...

We shall rescue Lady Oriana from the Prince... Mghmm.. /Together/. Then once the Prince is pushed back, we will hold a royal tournament to determine who shall lead the ward. We will invoke what powers we can, to re-open the bannergrounds and have it out like we used to.

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Marshal Luc Devereux of House Moonspear”
In light of recent developments, Retainers of the House Moonspear are given leave to join the attack upon the Palli.... should they so wish.

-- The Houses align themselves under their flags and make for war in earnest. The Pallid Prince turns from the City and the House's Banners have come to hound him until the very end of his realm. --

-- Somewhere else, safe in shadow, sits a boy with no shoes on a cold seat. A tall, gaunt man flanks him, whispering into his ear. --

-- When the cat's away... --

During the besiegement, a cunning rogue rocks the very foundations of a place of hope and expansion.

-- From the Old Canal Harbor, a shockwave blasts against the Ringwalls of the 97th, and can be heard from the Ward to the Warrens. --

-- A tower topples against another. Pondsfolk say they saw the head of the King flying just above the Ringwall across the harbor... --

-- Smoke fills Ring 97. An incredible plume is seen, and will be seen for several days. --

-- ...many, many mice take the opportunity of a lifetime. --

-- Harborfolk are seen, covered in soot, scurrying away forever, after pulling their meagre belongings from the rubble. --

-- Three flavors of retainer drag a Recondite, covered in soot, over the bridge to the gallows, lecturing the stubborn creature on morals and ethics. Its head is cocked, as if its eardrums have already been destroyed. --

-- A gleam of masterful pride flashes from its visage, rapidly being enveloped in deathly stone. Following it: the smells of alchemist's fire and bombstuff. --

- One last explosion racks the Outer Rings as a hat-wearing buffoon ignites the remaining explosive materials on the body of the Hanged Recondite, since brought to justice. --

-- Luckily, the gallows are unscathed. -- 

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Glitt Retainer Sorcha O'Connor”
Let it be kent that th' recondite kent as 'Mister Yakov' haes bin hanged fur th' crime o' murder haes bin hanged. Refugees 'n' survivors o' th' explosion in th' harbor ur fàilte tae tak' shelter in wee ticker 'til reparations kin be made, under th' protection o' hoose Glitt --

After a harrowing journey for most, an army is assembled:

-- A forward encampment awaiting the brave heroes that make the path forward finds itself assaulted by a scouting party of the pallid --

-- The trail of Banners makes its way to the edge of outskirts... --

-- The Banners of Orza, Moonspear, Velstra, bring their retainers to bear on the edge of the Pallid Prince's inner demesne.. --

-- Battle plans are formed... the rest of the accompanying retainers prepare and take to the outskirts fields. The orders have been shared. Only time will tell if they'll be followed. --

-- The remainder of the retainers form up outside... --

-- The forces are arrayed... --

-- In the distance, the city of Pale glitters darkly. --

Meanwhile in the Peerage...

-- A riotous rumble approaches the Peerage Ward gate, mercenaries and gangsters, well armed by some kind of funding, approach, chanting: WHERE'S OUR GROAT? --

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Alden Greywood”
People of the Peerage's Ward, the barbarian mercenaries which assailed our home have been repelled and put to the sword by our loyal armsmen. You have our worthy sons and daughters to thank for the keeping of our Promise, and none more so than the retainers of Orza, Moonspear, Glitt, and Velstra.

Back upon the field of contest, armies are finished prepping, they make forth:

-- Ser Manfred Japes sets his mouth to a bloodied horn. One single call that echoes across the flatlands of the Pallid domain. --

-- 'March!' --

-- An attack on the very gates themselves! --

-- Upon the Western Front a cold and horrible force seeks to stall the would be heroes --

-- Silence on the Eastern approach... --

-- Bones of Ice and stone crush against the Host lead by House Velstra. Ser Adrian Velstra leads grimly against massive foes that smash at them like gnats --

-- The masses of bone and ice, hulking ever so slowly from behind the Moonspear and Velstra line seem to dwindle a bit in power... their bones begin to chip --

-- The archers rain a score of arrows upon the Western Advance, the door is all but sealed... perhaps if they can remove the threat above they can deal with the one below --

-- Though the Western forces push through... terrible magics disturb the grounds there... a moment, and they are back where they were... --

-- A dreary battle on the Eastern approach... --

-- The retreat horn sounds on the eastern approach. --

-- House Velstra and Moonspear climb the battlements, seeking to end the Archers there --

-- The center approach holds... sounds of a struggling fight to the west. --

-- A horn blows long and proud from the Center, the sound of an approach cleansed of skeletal foe. --

-- The approaches are secured for the time being. From far behind the pale plains, a horn sounds from the harbor. Regroup, recenter. Restrategize. --

-- With less than a score of archers upon the Western front, terrible magics once more grasp at the heroes - still, the Western Wall is won -- 

With the gates challenged, a path forward to lay proper siege is given:

-- Ulfington heads outside. Soon, more artificers and workmen of the Drill join her. In the wake of pitched battles, they load and bear out wooden beams and construction materials, carrying them deftly across the plains. Hastily, they begin to construct, craft and build. --

-- Soon, fortifications, defenses, armaments are constructed... --

-- The quartermaster positions herself outside, calling those inside the complex to join her. --

-- An orzan war horn is blown, and the forces proceed towards the siege weaponry, hoping to defend it --

-- Scores of Pallid descend upon the defenders from the Center fort --

-- The Eastern Forces also meet resistance from the Pallid in droves --

-- The horn for Reinforcements sounds from the West. Titans of Ice smash the seigeworks. --

-- Catapults fire upon the Eastern Front as the defenders are beset by wave after wave of the undead --

-- The Gates of the West fly open, and yellow mist seeps forth. -

-- Upon the Eastern Front, the gates finally break, but a terrible miasma seeps unto the battlefield --

-- In the Center, Volleys fly and lay down the Pallid upon the walls --

-- The gate breaks... however, the sound of gnawing, gnashing and stamping feet follows... --

-- Though the catapults fire, the forces find themselves overwhelmed - still, the gate forward is broken, for now --

-- In the West, the onslaught simmers, as the yellow mists envelope all. --

-- A horn bellows from the Main encampment, while the field of war is still very active, the battle is won upon all fronts, a retreat is called --

-- The Sunpurse Captain Speaks: The battle is won this day, though those brave enough to press into the city proper might gather resources to do so upon the morrow --

-- Further he quips: The Pallid Prince will regret their actions shortly... --

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Ser Manfred Japes of House Orza”
The banners return to the ward. The city of the Pallid Prince has been cracked open and we shall soon be launching a grand assault. For now, we rest from the planar itch.

No less than four of the prince's personal knights were broken today and three of his grand city gates.

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Ser Adrian Velstra of House Velstra”
With the tragic bombing of Swaddle Point Harbor, House Velstra will be pulling its forward garrison out of the Bonelands and repositioning them in the Wine Quarter.

Whatever passes for leadership of the harbor these days is ordered to report to the Velstra Vale, posthaste, to discuss the future of the district. Our guards will stand watch over the orphanage for now.

We are grateful to the hard work of House Glitt in apprehending and destroying the deranged Recondite terrorist responsible.

Night passes, tensions flare, and calls for death are made in the still of the night... but upon the rise of the Promise, the efforts are continued:

-- Fresh for a fight after yesterday's taking and breaking of Pale's walls, the main force against the prince have gathered once again the next day to prepare for a final assault.. A captain, dead yet helpful, has ferried in reinforcements from across the Still in the wake of this main force... --

-- While many seem on guard, the same dead captain that has ferried a great deal of you before seems not to be hostile. In tow, he brings fresh reinforcements. --

-- The captain presents himself to the quartermaster. She, in turn, looks to him with something bordering between fear and obvious revulsion. --

-- The pair begin to converse. --

-- The quartermaster motions for Ser Manfred, Ser Adrian, and Luc Devereux to present themselves. --

The undead captain that ferried the host before and now asked for its price, but the host was unwilling. By Orzan orders the opportunist was cut down... never paid for his works

-- The quartermaster asks for those ready to muster outside for final say and preparations... --

-- Of the three banners called to rise against the prince, only two yet remain. Orza and Moonspear... their retainers rally around them. -

-- The Sunpurse seem to have vanished... --

-- On the thoughts of many is an event that survivors - should there be any - will never forget. The 'Vanishing of Velstra', then when it mattered.

-- Pale's walls loom on the horizon... --

-- Ser Manfred Japes sets his horn to his lips and calls for the banners to gather. Swords unsheathe, shields raise, spells are sung. The final assault on Pale begins... --

-- Likewise, the Marshal in banner blue, Luc Devereux sets his poor marchers to task: ending the cursed Pale once and for all --

-- Archers, though less than before, have manned what is left of the walls once again... they seem prepared. --

-- The sounds of massed gatherings.. --

-- Ahead of you seem winding alleys and narrow avenues. --

-- You are swarmed, beset on all sides. These alleys are the death of the slow. They seem so stretch and wind endlessly into the rest of the necropolis. --

-- Straggles in the back are bogged down with the dead. --

-- Ser Manfred of Orza cuts his way through the dead, in his wake followed by the rest of the invaders of the city of Pale. Luc Devereux fights beside him, the banner of Moonspear held high. --

-- The dead seem endless, here in the heart of their domain. As you proceed through the streets of Pale, you feel a heaviness on your shoulders. The heavy gaze of someone watching you with keen interest. --

-- The fighting is dogged and rough... --

-- They enter a more pestilent part of the city. --

-- The air is green and sickening. And you can smell the acrid taste in the air... up ahead you see things through the fog. --

-- Past the sickening fog, you see the men of Sunpurse fighting for their lives.. --

-- The sounds of battle in a nearby alleyway. --

-- Numbers flee north... --

-- A titanic struggle to the south! --

-- The last of Sunpurse struggle downwind in the caustic air. --

-- Some of the Sunpurse saved, ser Manfred blows his horn and calls northbound into the city.. --

-- They enter a lonely lane.. ahead of them, it seems, the only way through is through the gate leading onward through a rotted park. --

-- They enter the loneliest lane in all the city.. --

-- They trudge through dreadful water. As you continue... --

-- ..the dreadful waters shift. Something stirs beneath.. --

-- From ahead of them, the waters shift in response to their approach.. --

-- The walls seems scalable here for a select few.. --

-- Here the air is still. The space is silent. Whilst the rest of the city is riddled with the dead, here... they seem alone. All alone. --

-- Ropes are lowered rapidly into the prince's personal grounds... --

-- More ropes are fastened. A rapid rappel down the sides of the wall into the silent quarter. --

-- They meander into the meat markets. Here, gigantic beasts roam. The prince's personal carvers... they are slow, but a single blow could fell a man in one blow. --

-- The Pallid rouse from their rotted homes. Their sockets are empty of eyes, but lit with green hunger. --

-- Meat for the tables of the prince. --

-- Corpses of former friends and acquaintances of their home are hoisted upon their shoulders. They carry them with, trailing what remains of their blood. --

-- They felt an intimate presence watching you here in this square, so heavy as to be almost palpable on the shoulders. --

-- Ulf chugs a rare drink, then hurriedly swings a large rock around in a strange sling. Whoosh, woosh, whoosh-- he lets fly, aiming for the belltower high, high above. --

-- The rock is let fly, it angles, arcs, then hits the massive bell high up in the tower. There's a sudden sound of incredible clamour of a cacophonous ringing as the bell is rung, audible - palpable - throughout the rest of Pale and its immediate environs. --

-- One bell is rung... --

-- Ser Manfred flexes, crouches, then springs up into a furious blur of mucle and motion. He hefts a large rock, larger than his head (massive in its own right) then hurls a large rock, aiming for the belltower up high. Miraculously, the rock connects - a tremendous feat.. --

-- ...the bell rings in response to the violence inflicted upon it. Once again, the sound permeates like a wave throughout the rest of Pale. --

-- Luc calls upon ancient and ornate powers. There's a prayer on his lips, quiet at first, but then it loudens, strengthens. 'I unsheathe my holy sword and take up my holy spear. I need no holy shield, for my faith is my armor and in this moment of courage, I call on you now.' --

-- There's a silence that follows, and a still wind blows about Luc. A moment passes, then another, as he picks up another stray piece of architecture long since broken off from the edifice. He takes a running leap, angles, then releases it from his hand. --

-- A moment later, the third bell is rung. --

-- And the gates open... --

-- They enter the Prince's palace. As you wind their way through the endless labyrinthine tunnels... they find that the gates close shut behind them, locking them in. --

-- They enter the many colonnaded hall of the Pallid Prince himself. All about them, the dead - sat at their feasting tables - look up from their meals. As they move between the tables, they notice former friends. Cut and served and in the process of undergoing consumption. --

-- The Prince lords from his position, high above the tables, overseeing your arrival. There is a cold and cruel smile to his features, green fire leaking in rivulets down his sallow, sunken cheeks... --

-- Before the Prince, at the base of his throne, you see the lady Oriana, her hands clutched together in what appears to be fervent, desperate prayer. --

-- Pallid Prince: Welcome... --

-- Pallid Prince: How easily you take to my table after breaking my things! Perhaps you are famished after your long and strenuous ordeal? --

-- Pallid Prince: Fret not. The meat is plentiful... --

-- The Prince is flanked by some of his brides, sat on smaller stools to the sides of his throne. Their flesh is pale, their hair and features beautiful. But their eyes are hollow husks... and they weep. They weep. --

-- The Prince oversees, looking out across the breadth of his hall. His gaze on you is cruel and heavy and incomparably piercing. --

-- The Pallid turn turn their head in instant, eerie unison, as if their limbs and skulls were directed by an unseen puppeteer. All of their empty sockets are filled with green, incandescent light that has burned away at their cheeks over eons. And they all turn to look at Manfred... --

Quote from: The Host makes conversation with the Undead Royalty.
The Pallid Prince: ...Is there something you wish to say? [He leans in, almost tiptoeing to cock one ear at Manfred.]

Ser Manfred Japes: You have taken Lady Oriana Sunpurse forcefully, and we are here to take her back. Stand... Stand you cowards. [He slams his fist into the table]

The Pallid Prince: [ ...As the lady is mentioned, the prince turns his gaze on her.] You come for her?

 [The prince seems unperturbed by the actions shown by visitors to his hall. His attention is wholly fixated on Oriana. He steps up to right behind her, hovering, looming.]

Ser Manfred Japes: [Grips something in his cloak.]

-- The prince's wives, sat on their seats, suddenly gasp. Their backs arch and their limbs are made to move, almost catapulting themselves onto their feet. --

-- The Prince makes a slow gesture with his hand and in immediate reply, his pale wives make their way down the stairs. --

The Pallid Prince: See... [He gesticulates with his fingers. The women do as he wills them to. As he bends his fingers low, they fall to their knees. As he brings them back up, they look to him in fearful adoration.]

I will show you. [He says to the woman at his feet.] I will... please you.

[He turns to those before him.] You've come for my bride-to-be. But I fear you do not understand the gravity of what this woman is to me. Perhaps I can make you understand.

[From his side, he draws a slender rapier, he leans down to cup the woman's cheek.] ...My love. [He runs her through with one single puncture straight through the chest]

Ser Manfred Japes: [Kicks out the stool before him.] I fear you do not understand the gravity of the situation you are in!

-- Tables are flung, meat falls. Blood spills. --

-- The Prince raises his blade. --

-- Pallid Prince: ...very well then. --

-- Pallid Prince: Your blood as wine... your bone as bread. Let us see to a pleasant meal. --

-- Pallid Prince: My friends. It is time for a feast.. --

-- Reinforcements come from the many side halls.. --

-- The prince is not alone in his large palace. --

-- More of the Pallid slink in from the halls, ready to meet and eat you. --

-- The Prince raises his hands, working the ways of his world to twist and turn... --

-- The hallways of the Prince's palace open up... --

-- The halls rumble. The building-bones crack and splinter. --

-- More recesses of the palace open up as the bones of giants crumble and fade away, revealing passages. --

-- Long hallways closed and locked for eons open, revealing monsters long kept locked. --

-- Inadvertently, the passage for escape does as well. But the Prince seems void of his mightiest magics, the green fire in his eyes dimmed. --

A silver stake is stabbed into the cavity where one might find a heart of the Prince of Pallid, and then into the domain itself... fractures break in the plane itself

-- The Prince is felled, the last blow done by Ser Manfred. In response, the palace - the quarter - Pale itself - shudders, exhaling as if a long held breath was let out. --

-- The palace continues to quake and shudder. The prince lay where he was brought low and around him, the cobble begins to crack. --

-- Oriana seems nowhere to be found... --

-- 'Let there be MEAT.' --

-- Survivors flee out of the prince's palace. Slow-forming splinters crack their way from the palace on outwards into the rest of the city. --

-- Survivors flee across the square.. --

--They are willed onwards, with the speed of horse. They leave behind a citadel of meat. No doubt, within, were many pounds.--

-- Victorious, but broken, those who survived the assault on Pale and its Prince return to the ward that houses them... --

-- Ser Manfred Japes crosses the bridge of the Peers with Lady Oriana Sunpurse on his arm, clinging to it tightly... --

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Tolinar Mistborne”
Lord...Phelan of sunpurse.. your 'Mother' is here.. such as she is.

-- Buzzards circle House Orza as the Lady Oriana disappears within it... --

An ominous whisper follows...

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Lady Esmer, Mistress of the Hunt”
We haven't had a proper eons. We cannot express our gratitude enough, strangers. We have much to do now that we are free again... ...and even more to eat. We'll see you sooner than you'd like, we're sure.

-- With the Prince gone, the threat of the Pallid seems to have been dealt with, though only time will tell the truth to that statement. --

-- The recovery of the lady Oriana and the secrets learned within the prince's palace will indubitably lead to a great varying array of consequences for those who call Ring 99 their home. --

-- For now, however, those heroes who have braved the depths of Pale and lived to tell the tale have earned their rest and reward for the time being. --

-- A chapter closes, but another Ring opens again as the Drill will likely see itself moved again soon enough. And the collected continuation towards the center of this place, our City of Rings, will once again resume... --

Still, a reunion is made... Hostage and the Missing, Lady and Lordling, Mother and Son.

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Ser Manfred Japes”
Lord Phelan Sunpurse, you are summoned to Castle Orza... To speak with your mother.

-- A crowd begins to gather in the Orzan manor... --

-- The guards can't hold back the throng as Lord Phelan enters... --

-- The scene that unfolds within is soon on the lips of every person in the Peerage... --

-- The Lady Oriana ... standing callously as Giuseppi Orza tests the boy's blood ... --

Quote from: A Reunion Within Castle Orza
Guiseppe Orza: [He swills Phelan's blood in the black bowl... and studies its eddies and flow.]

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: Look at your work! Look what happens!

Guiseppe Orza: T-this is an exact science..

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: This is clearly the work of changelings...  Look at the sickly black bile in the blood... The boy is an imposter- a fetch!

Guiseppe Orza: [He glances at her, then into the bowl..] ...I d-don't.. hm..

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: Do you *know* how I know... ?

Guiseppe Orza: E-everyone is crowding me!

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: [Her hands tremble...]

Guiseppe Orza: [He hyperventilates, ducking away from the crowd for some space to study the blood, back turned] J-just give me a m-moment, PLEASE..

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: [She looks at Guiseppe, a frantic look on her face...] [She lets out a sigh...] Phelan... my sweet... baby boy...

Phelan 'Crowsong' Sunpurse: [Sniffles] I'm.. I'm your son.. please, m-mommy..

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: [She approaches him...]

Ser Adrian Velstra: [He lays a hand on his sword and immediately steps up as Oriana closes on Phelan... [He glances at Manfred.]

Ser Manfred Japes: Do not draw blades on a lady. [He reaches to pull her back.]

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: [The woman seems almost rigid... immovable?...]

Ser Manfred Japes: Swing your sword and die on these cobbles pea-pea... How are you so strong...?

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: [What strange sorcery... ?] My sweet Phelan...

Guiseppe Orza: [Studies the blood intently, nervous sweat beading on his brow..] Erm.. w-well..

Ser Adrian Velstra: Manfred...

Ser Manfred Japes: [He tugs and tugs, he cannot move her!]

Ser Adrian Velstra: I didn't send you that letter as a joke.

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: [She reaches her hand out, cradling Phelan in her arms... Sweet little Phelan...

Ser Manfred Japes: She's a Lady of the ward, swing on her and know th-nn... The consequences. [Try as he might, Manfred is clearly trying to tug on her, to no avail.]

Phelan 'Crowsong' Sunpurse: [Sniffles, quivering at his mother's touch.] M-momma..

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: [And then.. perhaps predictably, she draws a knife...] Do you think this is my first time killing a Sunpurse.... ?

Ser Adrian Velstra: [He draws his blade. Coiled like a serpent, and twice as suspicious.]

Phelan 'Crowsong' Sunpurse: [His eyes widen in abject fear as the knife is drawn]

Lady Oriana, the Widow of House Sunpurse: He has his father's eyes... You see... They fill with the same fear...

Ser Adrian Velstra: I told you, Manfred!

Phelan 'Crowsong' Sunpurse: [He shrieks in fear!]

-- The woman... a collapsed puddle of insanity on the ground, impaled by so many knifes, swords, spells and blades... --

 -- As her eyes close... --

-- "My Count... my beloved Count..." the Lady Oriana says... --

-- "Anything for you ... my Count ... my love... " --

-- "I'll wait for you... forever..." --

-- And with that...  the Lady Oriana, once the desire of all the ward, once the pursuit of so many suitors, breathes her last... --

Phelan 'Crowsong' Sunpurse: N-no, no! No! No! No-no-no!

Lord Anders Orza: That was supposed to be my bride!

Ser Manfred Japes: [Manfred drops his axe as he steps away from the witch's death. Holding up his bloody hands.]

Guiseppe Orza: [The bowl of Phelan's blood goes spilling as the three Orza brothers tuck into a three-way fistfight]

Lord Anders Orza: [He snarls] That was supposed to be my BRIDE!]

-- The Orza brothers have tumbled from the room in their tousling... Leaving only a corpse, a crowd, and a weeping boy. --

Ser Adrian Velstra: ...Take Lord Phelan back to his mansion.

Phelan 'Crowsong' Sunpurse: [He shakes and wails] [Fragile and small and now - utterly alone] [He is led, inert and only weeping]

Guiseppe Orza: I really s-should've just said h-he was a f-fetch... At least t-then... this w-would have some m-meaning ...  [He slicks back his hair with his hand... holding a bowl of blood...] P-Please - Everyone l-listen... The b-boy is not a f-fetch... I w-wish people would l-listen ... [He clutches at his head wearily...] Everyone j-just shut up ... !

Guiseppe Orza: [He sniffles loudly...] Again... the boy was not a f-fetch... and I have his b-blood now which the p-prophecy wanted...  But it all f-feels... So h-hollow... and p-pointless...  So many ... d-dead... For w-what...

Jodfry a'Valar: That should be obvious.You have all been gifted a great revelation... And you stand about gawking and gaping, wondering... The woman confessed to her part in the murder of the Lord Desmond.

-- Some souls are simply stained and some sinners not worth saving.  --

-- When the world proves cruel and callous, and hope and presumption prove fragile in their swift shattering... what can you do?  --

-- Pick up the pieces, and forge ahead.  --

Among some in the peerage, a royal letter is passed around through lordly hands and hushed whispers...
« Last Edit: December 20, 2021, 06:17:14 AM by Bearic »


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on: December 31, 2021, 05:29:04 AM
[ :: Year 2 :: ]

Works of  the Cinquefoil Rose continue against the wants and desires of the absent Count Zarono Senuspur, as the last prize  and defense of the dead Grand Vizier Sardistan is tested.

-- Dark omens in the skies of the City of Rings ... terrible black clouds streak through them. Something is surely soon to happen. .. --

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Winter Augur and Conduit of Arrhenius: Sverri”
The skies darken, the snow tastes of metallic dried blood! The raven awakens. It is time. Gather allies, to the Blacke Velvet where this began...swiftly. It is time for another step upon the Path of Arrhenius.

--A band of Retainers and sundry gather in the Blacke Velvet, before slowly making their way from the Ward. They go onwards to perform a great deed, some feat of heroism. Some battle for the good of all mankind. Or onwards, to failure...--

--Into the rain, they stride.--

--What will be sown, this dark morning? With they deliver the light to some dark corner of the City, or will the shadow consume them, and perish?--

--The arrayed force departs from the safety of the Dorvant's Wall, heading deeper into the Swamps.--

-- Beady green eyes watch them as they advance through the swamps ... staring from the trees, from the murk and the mire ... --

--The Trail of the Augur trudges through the Swamps, through cave and muddied clearing. They ascend an ancient Ziggurat, stained red with centuries of blood, and more. A powerful conduit for whatever is to come next...--

--The writhing mass of heroes idles about as the Augur begins his preparations. He lays out vials of blood, and icy pebbles carved with runes.--

-- There is a loud swing of an axe from the highest reaches of the Ziggurat ... --

-- They see a hooded man with red eyes waving at them... --

A premature whisper rings out explaining the circumstance, however such end was not so:

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Xiv'rahk”
Adrian, Sverri and Japes in one swing. That's what we in the business call a three-fer. I even buried them at no extra cost. I'll collect payment in the coming days once things settle down.

--The blood of Nephezar, of Velstra, of Moonspear, of Orza, and finally. The blood of the Count Senuspur himself. Each are laid out, in turn... each in their particular place, drawn from deep within the Augur's mind. His memory, or otherwise... the ritual is set.--

-- A heavy silence falls over the chamber... --

--Sverri draws on some deep power, calling to the Gods, and the Mists within which they endure. And yet... nothing.--

--Lady Glitt's blood is placed aside that of Ser Adrian Velstra... a premonition, perhaps... or simple happenstance. The ritual begins again, in earnest. The Augur trails his own lifeblood, in a savage pattern about the chamber.--

-- Thick clouds of Mist begin to fill the Ziggurat chamber... --

-- Great spires of magic rise up from around the long-dead lizard's sarcophagus! --

-- Words spoken on the wind: 'The path... the path... the path...' --

-- Slowly... the mist seems to stretch out, invitingly... all-encompassing --

-- Drawing them elsewhere... Drawing them... along the Path...  --

--It's tendrils snatch them, and they are pulled roughly through a cold blanket of Mist... somewhere.--

-- Finally they find themselves... In a strange place. A dark, cavernous structure. The colors are wrong. Strange and pastel... the walls drool and bleed as you glance at them. --

-- It is... dangerously cramped... --

--The world around you is strange. Cramped walls oppressively close to you, as if they close in. Closer inspection reveals that there seem to be brush marks. As if rendered on some canvas...--

--Chaos is sown amongst the ranks of the party. From those brush-stroked shadows, death steps forth, seeking blood to claim...--

-- The walls almost seemed to PRESS IN around them all... --

-- So CRAMPED... So TIGHT... Chaos... confusion... --

--Chaos. Absolute chaos... the painted men emerge from the shadows, their forms dripping with blood. Some folk are claimed, dragged into the canvas, awaking elsewhere...--

-- The bulk of the forces move ahead, while several dozen hang behind... --

-- Trapped forever? in the cruel maze of the Vizier... --

-- Finally the heroes reach the end of the terrible maze. But even at the end, there is no escape... --

-- Once more the houses devolve into petty bickering at their moment of triumph... --

--The group bickers and discusses, and decides. Which of their number will be painted upon the canvas, which of them will enter the Lighthouse, lashed as it is, by a raging, unyielding storm...--

-- Now the other painting comes into view... -

-- Many, many more spaces... back in the Peerage Ward. --

--All the while, a familiar shadow watches... stalks... slips among them, near unseen, with predatory instinct. The shadow, ruby-wreathed.--

--Casper begins to paint what he remembers of the Ward, and people begin to step into the painting, and disappear...--

--The eight enter, brush strokes calling them inwards. They emerge into an ancient, leaky lighthouse. The sounds of a storm rage outside...--

--Before them, a small boy. An orphan, no doubt - he is clad in the outfit of the Knaves. No doubt this is the infamous Pickney Jim, once unrivaled lockbreaker. Now a shadow of his former self. The cocksure grin replaced with one of pain, and turmoil.--

-- Into the dark depths of the Lighthouse do they tred; encountering strange and hunchbacked men - and even children, corrupted and defiled into titans of blood... --

-- A swirl of shadow.. An endless battle . --

-- The Count's Right Hand, Vizu Nemari, visits death upon brave heroes in a place far from here. --

-- A swirl of blades. ..An endless darkness --

-- As the Ruby's shadow grows long indeed; as it swarms around them all... --

A short moment of reprieve as shadows and shades of ruby red are dashed, the now seven continue on with their purpose... though they do not stay so for long. Soon the seven find themselves surrounded in an Auld room of Blood and Purpose.

-- Ser Adrian Velstra slices at the ropes... as Sverri's blood drips from his palm, into the pooling fountain below ... --

-- And the ancient bloodmage... --

-- Collapses to the floor, a gaping wound through his chest where a long spear had been impaled ... --

--A tremendous roar, eons in the making, erupts from the bloodmage. He drags himself up, his wounds closing...--

-- It's too fast to describe... the Rubies swarm in... they leap onto the Blood Mage... --

-- And one by one... their heads explode --

-- The magical painting begins to fundamentally alter the world... --

-- And the heroes reemerge in the midst of the Peerage Ward... in a bright flash of pastel. --

The Eight gift the tower of Oldspyre to Ojo for his works, though the current owner is most distressed, a series of altercations lead to some resigned development:

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Eldrikh Mundus”
Hrm. Khrm. [Cough.] Alright... [Grandeur fells Eldrikh's voice.] Those Who Saw It Fit To Backstab A Fellow Rose! To Do Same The Cursed Count Did To Me! Will You Take Responsibility For Your Actions?! Ser Adrian. Ser Manfred. Casper. Gaddiel. Kinsley. Luc. Sorcha.

Deliver To Me Each A Vial Of Your Blood. A Challenge Of My Rival Ojo! If Not... There Is Other Me-[Sever coughing.] ...I'm too old for this... There is other means. Tokens of challenge and such. We'll find a way...


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on: January 30, 2022, 07:35:44 PM
[[ :: Year 2 :: ]

Dark flames still flicker in and out of sight from the ruined bridge of the Peerage. The Shadow Witch of the Nothing, The First Inumbrater, The Light and Shadow of the Promise Aatish Aldebrand, or however many heard of her, was finally captured and put to death.

Though Dame Kinsley holds the honor, title, and worth of the deed of capture, it would be Kristoff Orza who would stab the once Orzan Retainer in the gut and watch her bleed out on the wrapped lumber beneath them. As a final act, an earth-shattering quake broke from a saged staff held by Inumbrater.

Splinters and debris caught upward as the crowd attending reeled from darkness surrounding them moments after. Black flames and maws of oblivion ripped from the cobbles beyond as boiling men and women brought a cold, devouring blaze to any they might reach.

As House Moonspear seeks to repair the damage done by their once retainer, those beguiled by the works of Doran and Aatish still pick apart the ranks further. Typherion Ozmeridians, once a proud glimmer of light and hope killed the champion of Moonspear, Bartimus Steel. Bartimus Steel, he who had weeks before defeated the champion of Count Zarono Sensupur and freed the Peerage of his presence, was cut down in the caverns beneath the weald. 

In the Burgage, what started as the death of a dwarf by a Glitt Retainer's hands has spiraled into riots simmering into open rebellion. The self-appointed protectors of Little Ticker have been replaced by faces non-human tangled within the banner of Blackjack. 

Sons of Iron, Golden Grinners, and others fill the vacuum quickly, setting up shops in broken hovels and holes in the wall. Eventually, the unrest unravels an auld institution:

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Emma Falltower”
How much groat tarnishes away in the vault of the guild of lessors? Chests full. I cannot imagine the glimmer and excess. The lingering testament of a... man? that didn't care about any of us - Senuspur.

Open the vault, Rowan. Look outside of your window. Look at your neighbors! They starve. They have nothing. Everything was taken away. You stood by them not long ago in Ticker Square! ... but now?

I ask you remember us. You're supposed to be one of us. I'll help remind you I hope, Rowan. Open the vault.

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Rowan Rummage”

The management of properties. The brokerage of titles. It was deemed prudent that a bloodless means for the Lords of the Realm to settle their disputes and squabbles would be concocted. My Guild exists to facilitate that. The art of the duel. The spin of the wheel. These things exist to prevent war.

The Lords and Ladies of the Peerage gave up their ancestral rights to manage their property. They were diffident, lazy, and destitute. They handed that power over to us in practice, and trusted us to keep their holdings in order and their feuds fair.

For a great long time, we did just that. On behalf of Count Zarono Senuspur, who was and always had been our benefactor and chartered master. Between the Guild of Lessors, the Knaves of 99, and other less mentionable organizations.

Timekeeping was made illegal some time ago. How long did he allow you your peace? A thousand years? Two thousand? I don't fret over it, nor do I care.

Business was good until all this business of revolt, rebellion, and war. There are no coffers, and I will not be harassed like a dog by beggars in our streets, either. I will be moving onward and upward, as has been my desire for some time.

Pickney, Finnegan, Cretus and the rest - 'tis a sorry thing how it all turned up. That is the lot of our labour, though. Anders, I do hope you keep your head among all the ~nobility~.

-- Spinning his cane and whistling, Rowan Rummage in his crimson cloak can be seen departing the Brokerage of the Guild of Lessors, once his very own Treasure Chest. He gives a whistful little sigh and then fishes about in his coat.  --

-- Drawing out a little red card, he flicks it at the door. There is a hiss, then a sharp POP, and a roar of ruddy fire and black smoke. --

--The card rolls by in the blast, the last bit of matter to disintegrate. The mourning face of the Red Queen burning up and fading away. --

--At the urgings of a halfling woman, the dwarves and other sturdy folk of Little Ticker begin running to and fro. They are shouting proudly and giddily to themselves about a 'Ram'? --

--The Blackjacks seem to be inert to the potential trouble. The dwarves are becoming intoxicated on the moment and the mayhem to come. --

--In defiance of their small stature, a collection of smallfolk (with help!) make their way out from some hidden alley... with a battering ram?! . --

--With a ONE and a TWO and a THREE... and the aid of a drunken Son of Iron, they SLAM the RAM against the Brokerage door! --

--The shudder of hinges. The boom of iron bending! The door buckles under the second blow! BANG! BAM! And falls inward, the Brokerage and all its secrets now wide for the plundering! --

--A mob descends. Beggars, poorfellows, curious peers and all sorts. To ransack and rummage in Rowan's old shop... Strange oddities and the odd realization are found in abundance in the brokerage... Dwarves chop up the carpets. A half-orc Blackjack trundles off with a chest full of rubies. There is some pondering over an old portrait of Lord Sunpurse I. --

--The thrifters and the grifters, scribes and dwarves, a howling Zheng retainer and a gaggle of other sorts stream out of the Brokerage, smoke rolling out after them! --

--The building is ablaze within, set to the torch by some malcontent. In the inferno two shadows can be seen dancing about.. swords ringing out their retorts over the blaze! The fire mercifully does not catch on the neighboring properties. --

--The Rooftop Bar, in a stroke of sincere genius, has begun cooking sausages and selling smoked meats. A sign goes up. 'Jerkey, Meats, Cured and Smoked in Rummage's Refuse! Limited Time Only.'  --

--The night goes on, marking the emergence of a new dichotomy. The riots and bloodshed of yesterday have born the fruit of resentment and rancour. No longer can the Retainers of the Houses Four count on their Blackjacks to beat and cow the people of little Ticker. Between the Sons of Iron, the generous donations of the assorted folk, and the whispered movements of other organizations and old names forgot, things have changed. --

As the weight of what was wrought still unravels, those that acted out of interest for little ticker manage to convince Dame Kinsley Greylocke to call a session of the Council of Peers to hear their pleas, woes, but mostly, their demands. Strangely, most of the houses present seem to comply with most desires of the Congressional of their lesser... Though, similar things have happened before, and the Lords of the Peerage do not fear this new opportunity... seemingly.

-- Laughter and Derision escape from the mouths of Retainers and the Noble caste of the Peerage this morning. Another small council, they speak, that claims a vote of mayor, an equality of little-ticker, a doomed event that has echoed through the ruins of the 99th Ring time and again... --

-- However, a peculiar man garbed in auld Sunpurse regalia offered the House throne to Lady Belmore. He spoke quickly, directly, and left...--

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Dame Kinsley Greylocke”
The Council has voted, and all Houses but Velstra, which either whined or twiddled their thumbs, agreed on the following:

First. Everyone, besides Lords and Ladies, will be considered equals within the Ward's district of Little Ticker. Long have their people been beaten and taken advantage of. Today we restore their dignity and show respect to fellow.

Second. Little Ticker will hold its own Little Council to manage their affairs. They will elect a single of their council to sit with the Council of Peers. Today we were blessed with Lady Belmore, and it was a better Council for it.

Third. The Little Council, or whatever they will call themselves, will put together a proposal on their plan for protections in Little Ticker for the us to vote on. They have a right to be protected, and to not fear for their lives.

I remind all that good leadership serves good people. It takes both halves of this coin.

-- Word spreads that one Lord was quite happy with the stance their House took during the Council of Peers, but only one. --

Meanwhile, strange gatherings of the undead seem to frequent the catacombs more often, rumours spread of cries of promises due between the ravenous attacks upon those that would put them to rest. While the harbour project still seems stalled after the bombing there, the orphanage keeps its doors open. However, Orza presence seems to have shifted focus to Ring 92 after the loss of their tower. With some long works in motion, figures cloaked in Orza vestment seemingly keep the lands for their Lord a toll, while dwarves shape materials in caverns auld. A cold chill that would usually leave by this season as well, strangely seems to linger....


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on: March 01, 2022, 04:55:22 AM
[ :: Year 2 :: ]]

The Jester, Conqueror and Knight and Knife of Orza Manfred Japes has been ended. His pride stolen by ambush in House Glitt, His life stolen by House Belmore, and his prized belt stolen away by Augur. There were many daggers that ended Japes - his fellow retainer, now oathbreaker, among them - she stood against him all while decrying his pact with some demonic force. A man that brought such mobs against the oathbreaker Malik, against the Pallid, and eventually against the late Lady Sunpurse was ended in his own.

Ring 92 still bears the scars of his works...

House Moonspear continues its constructive efforts upon rebuilding Dusk's Cradle, and repairing their footing in the ward. By some secret exchange was the skull of Aatish, buried under the pseudonym Aleena Moonspear, pried from her dead body, and gifted to Kristoff Orza. The two Houses waltzed into the Castle, of name so contested, and came to some agreement.

The Shroud of Childebert and Recumbant Effigies of Moonspear Auld are given proper respect by rites sacred of Venerable Niobe Greywood, as the works continue.

Meanwhile, a stirring between forces of nature seems to be amassing. Changeling sightings become all the more common, and the honor and prestige of the Peerage Ward is called into question again and again. Bereft of the malevolent Count,  pondscum, snowdrifts and wailing non-humans continue to make demands of their Lords and Ladies, unchallenged.


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on: April 03, 2022, 05:44:35 AM
 [ :: Year 2 :: ]]

A terrible mongrel horde lead by a terrifying leader: Hrorgjar, continues its war path against the Peerage. Stones of old power and might are wrought from their captors and utilized to some terrible purpose... his reign and actions lead to calamity for staples of the ward, and shatter the sense of control once established.

--Another great boom of green light from the mongrelwoods, and a loud, elongated horn blast, then chanting can be heard. 'Hrorgjar, HRORGJAR!'--

--It seems a warband approaches through the forests once more, greater numbers than ever seen prior, and at their head.. A Mongrel Warlord, in excess of seven feet tall, eyes glowing green with wytchstone light--

--The warband begins to send stronger foes, as the barricades slowly break down, but the bridge is held--

--The assault halts, a moment to gather the fallen? A pinch of mercy?--

--The Mighty Hrorgjar stands before those few gathered who dare to leave the peerage, his army at his back, and captives, including Ser Adrian Velstra at his mercy--

--The Warlord speaks clear, enchanted by his dark magic--

--As promised, this day you have crawled behind your walls.. As promised I showed you what the future holds for mankind--

--I told you, no ransom, no gold nor offer you can give except... ACCEPTANCE, will save you. Of these hostages, I will keep... hrm.. [he pauses]--

--So I will keep... this night...

--Four of your fallen, and I will subject them to the change BY FORCE, perhaps they will survive, perhaps they will not--

--Say goodbye to your precious Knight, Velstrans. He is MINE now.--

--Heralds, pick three of our other captives, if ANYONE else tries to interfere. Kill them--

Cool winds whip the air in the Weald and travel swiftly through the alleyways of the Burgage... the battle is lost for the Knights of the Peerage this day...

-- The early morning is ushered in with an unbearable hoarfrost, the likes of which are not recorded in the kenning of Steadingfolk and salt of the earth. It's sudden, horrible, and laced with an old, dull cackle. --

-- Men and women stay in bed, padding their bedding with extra hay or whatever material they can. Goosedown, and so on. --

-- Work in fallowed fields is foregone. A reveler of Norbert's festivities, left by his party in the street in debauched momentum last night, freezes over and perishes darkly in some alley. --

-- A deadening snow takes hold, like a sudden, smothingering blanket. Sound travels ill, as do men and women. --

-- The Peerage Ward is all amurmur about the disappearance of its most prestigious and longest-lived knight, Ser Adrian Winespill ... said to have been brought back from the grave itself, once ... --

Quote from: Velstra Retainer Lalena Steele
[A voice heavy with grief is hear] I just spoke with is true....Ser Arian has been slain.....sob Velstrans. Come to the ward, let us grieve and plan our next moves together.

And to the Mongrels that kidnapped him, and changed him, and lead to his death......your days are numbered. We will be coming for you.

-- At word of his death, the ward breaks out in hushed and frantic murmuring. The mongrels ... a word that is spoken with great bitterness upon the tongue. -

The second Augur of Arrhenius and Prophet to the King Sverri of the Skratti has met his death, something walked into, given to another as though by some passing thought awoken to him... Lightning breaks the ward during a storm, eyes are opened, but whom and why?

Quote from: Dame Kinsley Greylocke
An honest report is due. Sverri of the Skratti died today. He fed the head of Ser Manfred Japes and the mongreled body of Ser Adrian Velstra to the Winter Court. He preyed on Orzan, Velstran, and intended to do the same to me. He intended to murder me in cold blood for Fey.

Uncertainty erupts from the inner rings, a force ignored for a time has found their way through an obstacle that seemed to stall their efforts completely... bereft of their wizard, their connections to the Peerage, and one of their prized tools of blood and magics,  Count Zarono Senuspur yet persists in his claim. In his rebellion. Even if alone.

-- A whining protest of scrapping metal and crumbling brick and mortar screams through the night air deeper within the Rings. A man in a dashing doublet adjusts his cuff-links and takes a sip from a goblet of deep red liquid --

-- A vacuum of colour spills outward from the rings, soon disrupting and flooding into ring 91 --

-- A deep red miasma soon spills outward... it manifests in some sweeping storm of agony and rage --

-- The storm ebbs and flows, growing in strength as it spreads further out... 92, 93, 94, 95... --

-- Lightning cracks in the Pauper Ponds... --

-- Eventually, the crimson storm rips open in the seams, bloody rain and ash spew from the sky there and horrors shimmer towards the
king's commons --

A grueling battle takes place in the rifts, a combined force attempting to undo whatever troubles have been wrought from deeper rings...

-- The sweeping clouds of red seem to settle into the ground around below them... however, they seem stopped from pouring further into the peerage, the burgage or worse... --
« Last Edit: April 03, 2022, 05:52:59 AM by Bearic »


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on: April 18, 2022, 07:11:39 AM
 [ :: Year 2 :: ]

As a rough winter continues onward, though it should be well into spring... House Glitt fights back against the waves of horrible Mongrels. As a shard of power imbued to save the life of Ser Geno, does the knight repay the effort with his advance towards the defenses of the Peerage in but a moments time. The calamity bear turned away from the gates this time... a small victory for the Ward.

Meanwhile, Feathers ruffle and fall in the Scraggleways, and wildlife flee as a blizzard fills the Weald. What exactly transpired there is rumored, whether or not it matters much at this time is yet to be seen...

House Orza and Moonspear fight embittered, the death of retainer traded again and again. Conflicts before the Castle, Orza or Moonspear depending upon who you ask, escalate with the death of  Aldstan - he who was a leal servant of Moonspear; now left twisted, gutted and hanged by the King's Statue.

As the Dawn of the Promise reaches towards the sky, and retainers shuffle out of auld halls with smug looks of satisfaction, contempt or arrogance, a series of direct and impacting measures are placed by the Lesser Council of Peers. Only hours after scores of starving wolves descended upon the gates of the Steadings, seemingly driven to their deaths by madness...

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Sophia Blackstone”
[a warm and gentle voice, reassuring Citizens of the Peerage Ward and Burgage] Harken unto me, Sophia of Blackstone as I impart to you the edicts of the council of peers from todays illustrious meeting.

Edict the First: The public sale of prestigious items is henceforth banned. Private sale to the Greater or Lesser houses is still permitted. Punishments for a breach of this law are as follows: First offence, Payment to the offended house of triple the coin made in the sale of the object. Second offence, public humiliation and pain as decided by the offended house, short of maiming. Third Offence: Hanging by the neck until dead.

Edict the second: The sale of all objects that allow for the creation or summoning of undead creatures is banned. First Offence: Triple the value of the sale granted to the offended house. Second offence: Public humiliation and pain as determined by the offended house, short of maiming. Third offense: Burned upon the pyre until ash

Edict the third: Changelings, when discovered, will lose one limb and be given a single opportunity to repent. A second offence of changing ones king given form will result in being placed upon the pyre until ash. A first offending changeling with a previous criminal record will be considered a repeat offender.

Edict the fourth: The Tilted scales are given three candles from this moment to quit the ward and are declared exile. Erica Danebluff is bountied to the sum of four thousand groats, dead or alive. Payment offered in equal parts by houses Moonspear and Velstra.

Edict the Fifth: Bishop Stavros is hereby empowered to examine all faiths wishing to practice publicly within the ward and determine if they are inoffensive and permitted to proceed, or offensive and forbidden. Her word is law, but may be appealed at a convention of the Council of Peers.

Edict the sixth: All Holy Relics not in use by, or held by inoffensive faiths, may no longer be publicly traded and must instead be surrendered to the temple of the Lady Requited. To repeat, all faiths not approved by Bishop Stavros and all merchants holding relics of unapproved faith must surrender their relics to either the temple of the Lady at Dusks Cradle, or to the Bishop Stavros, pending judgment.

This concludes the edicts of this days council of peers. Be well.

However, a measure was quickly rebuked...

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Ser Nicholas Velstra”
Servants of the Peerage, listen closely. I do not care what you do to men that raise the dead, why give them a second chance at all? Nor do I care about you sentencing merchants to fees and fines for peddling kingly wares. However.

THAT church is dead, and I'll not suffer the hypocrisy and slight that front for the Count Senuspur manipulated you all into believing was Law, Dogma, Rite and Ritual.

Let any that seek shelter from this religious intolerance know that Velstra lands will /never/ abide by these petty words of this Lesser Council.

House Orza seems to follow suit quickly, though not by words of Lord or Knight, while House Glitt seems further focused upon the Mongrel Threat than matters of Religion. House Moonspear, however, sends a clear message that they mean to see these Edicts done:

Quote from: ”City Whisper by Erica Danebluff”
I suppose the council conveniently forgot that the Tilted Scales where under contract from a -knight-? Hmm, or they probably don't care. What do titles mean anyways? Anyhow, if any houses voted -against- this terrible mistake, it would probably do good for their honor to mention it on the bronze very soon, so we know who are Moonspear lackeys or not.

Quote from: ”Moonspear Retainer Devale Desthen”
Hark, denizens of the Ward. The witch Erica Danebluff and her half-blood mongrel have met their end at the hands of Moonspear. While the witch succumbed to wounds and shall be spared the pyre in life, she shall be burned at the stake now outside the cradle, a lesson to any who act against the safety of our fair ward.

-- Edict Four burns by the Cradle, betwixt the folly of Nephezar and the crumbling ruin of Zheng lies an Icon that the freedom of Little Ticker strove for. Erica Danebluff, Latched to a post, the dead body tied around a number of times, melts in the midmorning wake of the Promise. --

-- A struggling little ticker and heated arguments between houses continue on as Mongrels and Winter bark at the gates of the Peerage. Each House eager to prove themselves the correct path forward. A way forward and away from the council of Count Senuspur Zarono --

--All the while, a leased expansion continues onward... by blackjack bribe, through Velstra extortion, and the tempering of Orza's wrath by promises of implements and otherwise useful to their campaigns, a Workshop of Toyfolly opens its doors in little Ticker. --
« Last Edit: April 18, 2022, 07:16:50 AM by Bearic »


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on: May 15, 2022, 01:22:21 AM
[ :: Year 2 :: ]

The scion of Sunpurse, the House, its lord, its mansion and all else are dealt some fatalistic and seemingly sudden change. Though the young Phelan was soft spoken, rarely seen, and cloistered away from the politics, bloodshed and terrors of the Peerage, his council was not without works.

Several scruffy and broken men and women had been making moves to some effort. Mostly unseen, nor felt, but for by those observant. The fluttering littering of feathers within the scraggleways, the howling packs of beasts at the Weald gates: Some loose connections are now apparent.

A massive paradigm shift has undergone throughout the natural worlds around Rings 99, 98, 95, 94, and 92. Animals flock elsewhere, green withers and finds reproach. All this seems to have been for a calming voice, and their ends. A means to end the curse of Sunpurse.

-- “Thus the curse is broken! Ten, the final time. Nine the last sacrifice. In absolute resolve and finite determination have we sundered the final hold upon your freedoms. A key is left with you. A path forward curved from Auld Stones...” --

-- “... By aspects stolen were these gifts delivered: By Unmeasured Growth, by Protection and Life, by Transformation, by Sacrifice, by breaking of Cycles; and by Purification of Blood.”

-- “We leave with you a Hearth for the long Winter. Bereft of the Willow, the Curse, and given life by paths upon the Oldways. Flourish and survive.”

Without misstep, in moments of its revealing, the sanctum and hearth and warm glow was christened with blood upon the streets of the Peerage. Yet, the warm glow that cuts through as a knife through the frozen winter air does not seem disturbed. It is peaceful, it is alive, it is whole.

Rambling drunks and pleading beggars can be seem to frequent the outskirts for hopes that the warm air might shield them from death of hypothermia. Meanwhile, Retainers and Kingsmen can be seen taking sword, torch and axe to it with little effect. The forested grounds swallow harm brought to them as though a child with a toy...

Only House Glitt still seems to manage its vigil of the Weald, through cutting frost and biting snow, the lumber camp continues, as do patrols. While Velstra and Orza lose ground and as the Mongrel army advances, making its calls to War, a stalemate is seemingly formed. Three Wytch stones to three Wytch stones. It is revealed, before the battle upon the bridge, before Ser Geno might have ended some abomination that blighted all good and leal of the Peerage name and honour; that there is one stone left. Something unmovable, something critical to which ever host might prove victorious.

As men pile upon carts of the dead, as the Willow tree of Desmond Sunpurse's gardens and ponds bends and twists into the permafrost below it - bereft of its dryad, left to freeze in the cold – a battle for the future of who will survive nears conclusion. 


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on: May 24, 2022, 12:21:16 AM
[ :: Year 2 :: ]

The early hours of the morning were broken by a whisper, Ruul Velstra demanding aid. What for is unknown. Only that shortly after, the Mongrelwoods filled with smoke...

Shortly after, a strange whisper tore across the bronze ears:

Quote from: Supervisor Aleksandr Makes-Eyes-Shine
Quote from: Supervisor Aleksandr Makes-Eyes-Shine

Shortly after, with an army of retainers gathered before the gates the ward, a single figure was seen approaching the ward alone. Waiting. And for a great time he waited, alone, silent. When questioned he would not speak. Until, after some time, he spoke:

Quote from: Supervisor Aleksandr Makes-Eyes-Shine
... Coward. Your people play at honor... play at law... like children. You do not even understand the words. Your entire ward shall suffer for your cowardice. And when you suffer, remember this moment. Remember the hand that ended this long quiet. It. was. not. mine.


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on: July 25, 2022, 10:27:09 PM
[ :: Year 2 :: ]

A rare sight limped into Ring 99, this day... one of the Master Ringrunners, Andryr the Orphan. Crippled and meek, the man spoke of a lifetime searching for a single place: The "King's Vault". He told a tale of  a time long past, unimaginably so, where the king himself gifted upon his most trusted a gift of incredible power. The specifics of which... unknown. It is said that entire rings were reshaped by its passing... and now is the time for the worthy to reclaim it.

By terrible price, Andryr secured his first clue in a lifetime of searching: Ring 99. He now recruits men to begin the great search for the vault. He now calls upon aid in discovering, and unsealing, the vault.


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on: August 04, 2022, 11:16:28 PM
[ :: Year 2 :: ]

At last, the key to the King's Vault is found. Two glistening suits of armor, one in Red and one in Blue.

Some say that a price in blood will be required. That two great warriors must fight, to the death, under the eyes of the king.
Others say the winner of the duel will be rewarded beyond belief.

The only thing that is certain is that soon, now, the vault will finally open, and its power given to all...


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on: August 29, 2022, 01:15:32 AM
[ :: Year 2 :: ]

As black storms and tides rage upon the distance of the outer-rings, and blizzards of ice and snow only seem to gain in strength from the Weald and further within, an earthshattering quake erupts below Ring 98.

Under pale orange moonlight old Leyroads are remapped, torn and twisted by forces in service to the Winter Fey.  A work whispered done by the self proclaimed Mother of the Mongrels, Queen of the Stars and Winter, carried out with deal and force to fix what was broken, While not evident to most, something drastic has shifted, and final plans seem to be in motion. At the baying of hounds and stampeding of beast do the gates of the Steadings once more face aversion. A massive winter wolf leading them into battle seemed to vanish in and out of the melee; all before ripping some portal open to a frozen altar.

Whatever the hound was, Gnipir or otherwise, a pack of spirits and shades followed in its wake and attempted to defeat the resolve of the Ringrunner, Retainer, or adventurer keen enough to dare enter the frozen prison. Despite them walking so eagerly into the trap, the wolves were all laid low. Though curiously, their howls remained... deafening those too close, roaring and shattering the resolve of lesser men and women.

A horn blared through the cold night air, one normally met with reinforcement from highlander and otherwise, was drowned out in the cacophony of violence and death throes. The Glitt encampment was covered in ice and snow, those that stood made skeletons and martyrs to their Lord Bernard Glitt.

Hunting parties and changeling resentment in the Peerage grow like wildfire, as crops continue to freeze, animal life seems to disappear and now materials for repairing damages grow more scarce.

All the while, the plaguing blight of the inner rings drifts from the mind a bitter memory. Heroes of past lost to conflicts spurred on by a Count done with the troubles of Ring 99 and still paving his way forward towards his revenge... with no regard for those lingering behind. A lingering and strange red light shimmers from time to time high above the walls of the rings.


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on: September 28, 2022, 04:45:25 AM
[:: Year 2 ::]

Glistening hoarfrost encapsulates the rooftops of the Burgage.  A Trashgull succumbs to the elements and flutters in mid-flight: dropping before the feet of some uneasy Blackjack. The Promise in the dim and despondent sky wanes considerably quicker than it should, as rancorous cloven feet stomp upon the once calm and relaxing meadows of the Weald.

It's all but become accepted.

A bellowing voice rings through the night air. Resentment and wroth boiling over like a tea pot burst upon the floor:

Quote from: House Glitt Huscarl
By authority of Lord Bernard Glitt, I exclaim to any and all tired of this bewitchment: ENOUGH! We have an answer for you devils of Fae make and unapologetic arrogance. House Glitt will take back its possession of the Sheppernine.

Prepare - Your Fortress besieged, your efforts ended. We will march upon the new Moon

As spoken by Retainer Mathans MacBriar, a host will march and end this threat. Those inclined to earn their family name honor. To fight back against the corrupted demons that weaken our chances for survival. March with us.


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on: October 02, 2022, 06:38:33 AM
[:: Year 2 ::]

A gleaming haze spreads over much of Ring 98 and 99, as the snow and ice melt quickly after the defeat of the Devil-Fey Eg-iln-ribs-soto-eg. First battle and siege were given to the walls of the Frozen Fortress of the Winter Fey. The curse of Fimbulvetr, some sort of dragon of ice and snow, magic and glamour appeared when those leading the assault reached the summit.

-- A large piece of siege weaponry is wheeled into the Weald, by the Glitt Host --

-- Through harsh battle does the battering ram meet the frozen encampment --

-- It slams into the gates of the Frozen keep as forces of the peerage pile upon it --

-- Massive figures from inner rings begin to shamble towards the inner Weald... --

-- Shards of the Failure, the massive remains fled from before in deeper rings, gather hence --

-- They begin pile upon the egg, gathering toward the summit --

-- One by one, they fade away and a crack forms in the surface of the massive sphere --

-- The egg, as it is called, cracks, and a howl and scream fill the Weald --

-- The Curse, the works and efforts of the Winter Court slays one Retainer after another in rage--

The works of previous failure, the efforts of slaughter and revenge were bested by painful effort, as this augmentation of supposed fears and misconceptions grew giant in strength... though fell when challenged. The host had won the battle; however, the way forward was sealed... they had to find an alternative route if they wished to do more than stall the works of the Winter fey.

In months of planning, deception, trick and trade with Summer Fey, Changeling and otherwise, the Peerage had learned of such a route. A mirror once a boon to the Winter Fey, twisted against them by blood of Gnipir, a broken phantom that cursed and blinded many to its purpose. Whispers spread still that such blood was the downfall of Valmoria the self-proclaimed Mongrel Queen...

-- The blizzard grows further in the frozen forest, all battling the seemingly endless fey --

After long battle with wolf, mammoth, bear, bird, and phantoms of an ever-shifting Eg-iln-ribs-soto-eg, who twist from stag to bird to man to beast. Only a single soul remained to speak of the works here to gather from revenge or punishment of the ward.... Nowhere was the Troll Witch seen, or the servants of the Winter Court; just a pitiful man whose bones and limbs slowly turned into brittle ice.

-- A single man sits in the ice and snow --

-- Aged well beyond his years, haggard and broken --

-- The icy cold figure, self-proclaiming to be Kae Skybloom, boils to death at the hands of Glitt RetainerMarbhaiche... before saying anything else... they simply are gone. --

-- However, the icy realm begins to shake... a grave mistake, perhaps for eager fools to make --

-- The portal locks and a horrible laugh escaped --

-- The mirror is broken by the Glamour Breaker, the way back out, freed as ice and snow tries to bury you --

-- In the Weald, in the Steadings and around the bends of the Peerage and its surroundings, the ice and cold begins to melt... it seems the plight and curse of Fimbulvetr has ended --

Conquest of the Weald, and its surroundings once more ramble upon the subordinates of the Peerage's Lords. As such it must always be. Mold and mildew begin to become the new pest of the average serf as drunks once more gallivant upon the streets of the burgage - drowning their sorrows in ale and mead.

-- Rumored bickering seem to flare in much of the Peerage, as each House attempts to claim the honor of victory against the Winter Host, and furthermore, fuses over control of the recaptured lands --

-- Any small truce or allowances prior shatter almost instantly as the Promise rises in the morning sky --

A black storm yet rumbles upon the distant horizon, and the animal life in the Weald is not what it once was...