McGreggor watches as each of the Gods departs the scene. Once the last has left he turns to the others.
“Soooo, those guys looked pretty serious.”
Trent stood in the ruins with Jescha at his side, the two of them holding each others hands. They watched together with the rest of Trent’s companions as the assembled gods faded from the scene with Athena’s body. The absence of the Calgary Rift to his senses was an unmistakable reminder that what had occurred today wasn’t just some fever dream or hallucination. Trent’s mind raced as he replayed the events of the day in his head, and slowly looked around at his companions.
James, the dark-haired Demi-god who was as subtle as a Coalition skelebot, was obviously distraught over the death of the goddess Athena. The Sowki Shifter Pall Mall stood nearby with his Valkyrie, Sonja. Pall’s other Valkyrie servant still lay in two pieces on the ground not too far away, her body cold and lifeless. The being who called himself Steve, of the House of Gary, looked very confused. He claimed to be human, though what was human about this demonic creature Trent had not yet been able to pierce. Then there was McGreggor, the Dinosaur-headed minion of Pall Mall. It seemed pretty obvious to Trent that McGreggor didn’t really “get” the significance of what had just occurred here. Even his reaction just now, made Trent want to shake his head and walk away from them all. But instead, against his better judgement, he activated a talisman of magically speaking all tongues he had made, and responded to McGreggor in the language he had heard the being use before.
“McGreggor, that’s because they WERE serious! Did you follow anything they said?! Events have been started here, today, which could be the end of all existence! Already one of the gods has been murdered! ONE OF THE GODS! Dead! Let that sink into your oversized and under-staffed skull for a moment! A war has been started between two dimensions brimming with evil beings that, according to an ancient book that Pall Mall (Trent looks over at Pall as he says the Sowki’s name) gave to his god, will use all of reality as the battlefield and destroy it in the process! AND the beings who not only profess to be the gods of legend, but ARE, actually, the gods of legend, are unable to do anything about it!”
Trent pauses after that outburst while Jescha looks at him with concern. Trent takes a few moments of focused breathing to calm down.
McGreggor stares at Trent for a moment, his jaw slack. He stutters out in Atorian, “You…you’re…” He all but falls prostrate in front of Jeschia. "Mistress forgive my impertinence I did not know … one such as yourself would come here without a vanguard! "
He rises to one knee, stares at her feet and continues in Atorian, “Do not fear, my lady. I can see you are keeping a low profile. I will provide you with what assistance I can as I have been here for several of their months now and have a good grasp of the cultural nuances.I must ask though, is what your servant speaks true? Has one of the Six been slain!?”
When McGreggor comes towards Jescha she starts to back away, reaching for the two-handed sword on her back. Trent squeezes her hand to steady her as he seems to fall at her feet, speaking gibberish. Once he kneels and begins speaking again she can suddenly understand him, and recognizes the rush of magic flowing through her from Trent. “His talisman of Tongues,” she thinks to herself as she listens to what the horrible d-bee in front of her is now clearly saying. Even with the magic giveing her the understanding of what he’s saying, she’s not sure it makes any sense.
Trent leans in to whisper to to her in Dragonese. “I don’t know-” he starts to say, but Jescha lets go of Trent’s hand and takes a step back from the both of them, giving Trent a nervous glance as she does. She looks then to McGreggor and speaks to him in the language he is using, never taking her hand from the hilt of her sword. “Do not address me so familiarly, Creature. If Trent told you something was true then believe it. Never address me in this manner again or I will make sure you don’t live to regret it.” She gives Trent a quick glance and continues. “Speak to me only through Trent. I don’t wish to hear what you have to say, and if it’s important than he can tell me.”
The color of McGreggor’s face turned from ashen grey to ashen grey. Still on his knee, he looks at Trent with eyes seeking forgiveness and says (still in Atorian), “I have forgotten my place and I will submit to a penance of the Lady’s pleasure. If one of the Six has fallen, the Lady must be protected from a threat such has never seen before!. If she would have me, I would pledge my life to her House.”
James looks over at the 3 arguing in another language. Rage and fear and misery boil inside his eyes. He looks at the now knocked out form if Solomon Kane and draws his sword.
Trent takes a quick, questioning look to Jescha, who glowers back at Trent. She has not relaxed from her combat stance. He then addresses McGreggor. “Look, McGreggor, As long as you understand that things are serious, then… whatever. Just keep your distance from Jescha.”
Trent looks around, to see what the others were doing while he and Jescha had this excessively weird encounter with McGreggor.
McGreggor nods and winks at Trent as he rises to his feet. He turns and says to everyone in their native tongues, “James, I believe Pall Mall has offered sanctuary to all present. I would suggest you sheath your weapon and stand down.”
“I’m not going to hurt him..just making sure if he gets up he doesn’t get far. I’ve learned a few things about this man.”
“Let me suspend him in time until we’re ready to deal with him. I’ve got questions for him, but I want to ask him in a more controlled environment.”
Trent walks over and casts Suspended Animation/Stasis Field on him until it sticks.
After that, Trent has a whispered conversation with Jescha, then quietly addresses everyone around him. “I’ll be right back in a few minutes,” he tells them. He then proceeds to cast a spell to create a Dimensional Envelope, and walks into it with Jescha.
After about a minute Trent and Jescha re-appear. Trent cancels the dimensional envelope he just entered from and walks over to James. “No matter what you may hear in the future, James, know that it was not Solomon Kane who murdered Athena but the Archfiend Baaz in disguise. And because of that ruse, we need to get that man to a safe place soon.”
Trent turns to address Pall Mall, “When will your sanctum be ready for guests? I think we all need some time to come to terms with the events of these last few hours, and while I don’t speak for everyone, I don’t intend to do it here. If your sanctum can’t be available then I’ll make other arrangements. Otherwise, let’s fly.”
Trent and Jescha walk over to the gryphon, Graatch, and prepare to travel.
While the group seems to be discussing what to do next (and RP’ng ) Pall sends a magic pigeon out to Gimbly ( with some specific instructions – tbd in side bar ) and has a side bar with Odin ( length and location TBD ).
Upon his return he says..
“ok guys I definitely think we need some time to regroup and catch our breath. We have a lot of pieces to put together and need to define our next move. Baaz has seen me and is probably pretty pissed taht we have taken the artifact and most likely will be looking for us…if for no other reason than to keep tabs on us.
We need to take every precaution when entering into my sanctuary and there is only three rules –
1. you can never speak of the sanctuary to any one – it must at all costs be kept secret.
2. you may never EVER EVER ( looking directly at McGreggor ) travel directly there. uit must always be at least the second or preferably the third point of contact in your journey to it.
3. I will be making a third rule sometime but for now – refer to rule 1!
The final touches for the safety of the sanctuary need to be made and I need to stop by Freehold to learn the spell “Sanctum” to make our hideout invisible to remote viewing and other magical means of spying. Trent – do you know this spell? I would gladly teach you something in exchange. Otherwise its to the magic guild then to the sanctuary."
“In light of recent details, I will require access to equipment so that I may better serve the Cause. As I am from Idaho and am unfamiliar with “Freehold” can you recommend a place to acquire mechanical parts and perhaps drop me off there on our journey? We can establish a rendezvous location to meet up or check in at certain times."
Trent eyes McGreggor. “Idaho…?” Then Trent shakes his head, dismissing the beast’s crazy ramblings. “That’s not a spell I’ve had the privilege to learn, Pall, though it’s as if you read my mind. The guild in Freehold was my next stop but with the Coalition knocking on their door I intended to pass through to somewhere else… maybe Lazlo, if the guild has a branch there.”
Jescha looks at Trent with a questioning look, but Trent continues. "Were you going to open a portal to Freehold we could all use, or are we taking the long way?
He looks at trent and the others…shakes head.. picks up athenas body(was never mentioned that anyone had done anything with it) and mounts his horse.
“im going off on my own…ill try to be back in 3 months if i can. ill meet near where we all first met. from there we can go to sanctuary. " He flies off on nightmare for gm sidebar
“Hey James,” Trent calls out after him. “What about your Cyclopian friend here?”
“mcgreggor thats no problem… But i dont know what idaho is. Its my feeling that since freehold is most likley on the cs radar because if their recent campaign against magic users everywhere that they are probably preparing for war. Thusly not a bad place to pick up some mechanical parts and such. Its also pretty easy for us to get back to the sanctuary from there”
“well ive never been to lazlo although i have heard of it. I wouldnt be opposes to staying out of any potential random encounters but i would be at a loss as to how to get there.”
“well… Eff you too then olympian!!!! Whatever. Good luck finding us!”
" steve… What do you say? Are tou with us?…Wait…. Where is steve? Has any one seen him?"
" just when i thought it was time to work together for the good of THE MEGAVERSE!….sheesh"
“yes what about HIM!! I have a dwarfen friend who im certain he would get along with”
Pall mall takes a picture of the cyclops as he has cancelled his metamorph-right?
James looks back at dim. “dim…you can go to the sanctuary or come with me. in sanc you should be able to just smith in peace for now” He glares at pall “if not let me know…”
Trent just watches James go. “Well, that resolves one of the issues I had.” He smiles at Jescha, then looks back at everyone. “I guess we’re off to Freehold.”
“So Pall Mall, were you going to open up a portal for the rest of us to go to Freehold?”
“I can definitely get us there… I guess well have to hope that the guild There can get us to Lazlo. I’m actually looking forward to seeing it.”
That will cost me 275ppe…no problem
" we’re going to land about 1 mile out of the city and hoof it from there…. Don’t want any one following us… Agreed?"
“Agreed. McGreggor, Steve… (and maybe Cyclops guy too?)… you should come with us. Hmm.” Trent pauses for a moment as he recalls Solomon Kane’s unconscious and time-locked form on the ground. “I guess I better stash him in a safe spot first.” Trent begins slowly casting a spell, drawing energy from a dwindling Energy Sphere to create another Dimensional Envelope. “This will take a few minutes, but you need that time anyway to prepare your ritual, right Pall?” Trent and Jescha carefully pick up the body of Solomon Kane, making sure not to touch his hat. They then walk into the Dimensional Envelope with Kane.
Dusting some dirt from under his fingernails pall mall says….
" we’ll actually for me it’s just a two action cost spell….somill just wait on grandmantrent and sidekick….yeah….I’m that sweet"
About 10 minutes later Trent & Jescha return. “All set,” Trent announces.
Diminutive Bubblefuzz bows, though his hairless pate claws the clouds, and he begs “pardon.”
“Young master James…” he begins with an air of aplomb and just a stutter of hesitation. “You have my heartfelt gratitude for saving me from a fate worse than death. You have restored my Zeus-purloined Lightning and now Stella has her Groove Back. I would beg your leave to join your companions in the safety and sanctimony of this…Shifter’s…Sanctum. Or was that Sanctuary?” He squints his single, massive eye and looks to the heavens with a knowing smile. “Yes, I believe I could use a bit of a reprieve. What do you mortals call it? ‘Vacation?’ Sounds like it’d hit the spot right about now. I’d like nothing more than to feel the heat of the forge, the sweat on my brow, cold, wrought-iron in my hands…and the blood of juicy, red, raw meat on my tongue.”
Dim concludes his audible inner monologue with an eyelash-batting blink of finality. “Come, friends, let us away.”
“Do as u please master dim. I bid u luck and hope to meet again”
James gets on horse with Athena’s body and flys off.
275 PPE, 2 actions, and a mile of travel later, there everyone was, in the chaotic bustle of Freehold, one of the last surviving remnants of the fallen kingdom of Tolkeen.
“All right, time to see if the guild can take us to Lazlo. The longer we stay here, the more likely it is we’ll be forced to fight for our lives.”
With that said, Trent and Jescha head towards the magic guild, unless there’s something significant of note occuring within the town. Trent will attempt to secure teleportation services through the guild for himself, Jescha, McGreggor, Steve From the House of Gary, and Diminutive Bubblefuzz, if they all wish it.
“Where I come from, when ever we split up the squad, we established a rendezvous point and time. As we all seem to be going separate ways for now, I suggest the place be Lazlo. From what you have told me of the place so far it appears to be a neutral territory. The time, let’s put it at one week from today for a check in.”
McGreggor turns toward Trent and bows his head to look at the ground as he speaks: “When we arrive, can you establish one of your ‘pockets’ near the closest bar to the Mage’s Guild? I believe that would cover the location and motive for a motley crew such as us frequenting the establishment.”
“mcgreggor – is there a spot in lazlo we should look for?”
Mcgreggor turns to Pall, “The closest bar in proximity to the mages guild seems like specific, yet generic enough spot to use.”
“If need be i will just send a magic pigeon to find you’s”
“I’ll make sure I identify a local meeting place in Lazlo for us, McGreggor and Steve. That way we have a local place and way we can stay in contact until Pall Mall’s sanctuary is ready. That is, assuming the guild has a branch in Lazlo and can take us there from here…”
After that conversation, Trent went into the Freehold Magic Guild and bartered for transportation to the city of Lazlo for himself, Jescha, McGreggor, and Steve from the House of Gary. Once in Lazlo, Trent and the others identified a bar/tavern (The Hungry Scholar) within a couple blocks of the Lazlo branch of the mages guild and established that location as a rendezvous point. Trent informs everyone that he’ll be there every two weeks to meet with them. They can choose to come then or not, but he’ll be there if they need or wish to meet with him. He does swing by there periodically every few days anyway.
Before McGreggor leaves the group, he talks with Trent and receives some money, as well as all of Trent and Jescha’s “broken” technological devices – everything that stopped working because of the EMP from McGreggor’s bomb.
With that, everyone goes their own ways and attends to their own business for a while.