Chronicles of Khaldun: Crux of Eternity

Revenge of the Giants, Part 12

Freeday, Harvester 21, 552 CY (50 AN)

Having returned to Argent, Bezaldooz, Bosabrieln, Peren, Torinn, and Valna are met by Rrowthar. Seeing that they are tired from their journey, he bids them to rest, but recommends they speak with Obanar to determine the next step in their quest.

The next day, Starday, Harvester 22, the Shields of the Sorrowfell travel to the Guardian’s Tower to meet with Obanar. The inform him of the things they learned from the astral giants. He agrees with the assessment that they ought to confront the frost giants first, although he notes that there is another series of diplomatic missions they should likely perform to ensure the settlements of the world can defend against the giant armies. The Court of Fallen Leaves is an eladrin settlement that engages in trade with mortal settlements such as Andor, Flotsam, and other coastal settlements. They will be able to pledge their warriors to the defense of the mortal realm. The Three Corners, located in the Hoarfrost Ridge to the northeast of the Sorrowfell Plains, comprises three settlements, one human, one dwarven, and one goblin. If they can be united against the giants, they should be able to hold off any giant warriors on the march.

The Shields decide to travel to the Court of Fallen Leaves first, and Obanar performs the rituals necessary to send them there. They arrive in the courtyard of a crumbling castle. A pair of eladrin warriors in gleaming chainmail are there, and they are met by an eladrin woman in a shimmering gown with motes of light circling her brow. She is named Alarielle. Bosabrieln explains their mission, and she says the lords of this place are currently in counsel. She leads them into an entry chamber filled with courtiers and warriors, indicating the Shields are welcome to converse and partake of refreshment until the lords arrive.

Bezaldooz watches the proceedings, spotting a plaque among the ruins proclaiming the alliance of the Court of Fallen Leaves. Peren and Torinn speak with a group of burly warriors, largely centaurs, drinking and wrestling with them. They note that their lord, Lord Maervik, always keeps his word to someone who defeats him in a physical contest. Bosabrieln and Valna first speak with a group of courtiers, learning that their patron, Lady Tarentia, is obsessed with the arcane arts. They next speak with a group of knightly eladrin, learning that their lord, Lord Kaerwyn, is an honorable man who respects fighting ability and chivalry.

After having some time to speak with the warriors and courtiers, Alarielle says the lords are ready, and leads the Shields to their chambers. Within are three eladrin: a burly male warrior; a slight, robed woman; and a man in a suit of armor decorated with symbols to Corellon. The warrior, Lord Maervik, invites them to drink. Peren and Torinn go to speak with him while Bezaldooz speaks with Lady Tarentia and Lord Kaerwyn speaks with Bosabrieln and Valna.

Lord Maervik invites Peren and Torinn to drink brandy with him, and challenges them to wrestling — although Torinn initially pins him, Lord Maervik wins a match with Peren and a rematch with Torinn. He thanks them for being good sports and gives them a small cask of brandy, recommending they take a shot before battle.

Bezaldooz finds Lady Tarentia to be a ditzy, giggling girl, but her demeanor hides a sharp mind and a true knowledge of magic. She is suitably impressed with their philosophical conversation, saying the Court will ask the Shields to go on a mission, and she will offer the assistance of one of her vassals, a gnome named Twistroot.

Bosabrieln and Valna find Lord Kaerwyn cold and haughty, and initially apathetic to the plgiht of the world, but they convince him that he can join in glorious battle. He offers them the misshapen eye of a fomorian, indicating that the Court will ask the Shields to go on a mission. If they crush the eye outside the lair of their enemy, they can learn the location and nature of each creature in the lair.

Once the conversations are finished, the Court reveals their task — the Shields are to travel to the lair of the fomorian Taroxn and retrieve the chalice of autumn’s regret. If they successfully do so, the Court of Fallen Leaves will lend aid to the mortal settlements. They give the Shields a map and send them on their way.

It takes the Shields two days of wandering through the bleak tunnels of the Feydark to find the lair. Outside, the Shields each take a shot of brandy, and Torinn crushes the eye, learning of two cyclopes, two fomorians, and an ettercap lurking therein. The Shields creep to the portcullis, and Bezaldooz launches the first salvo, a brilliant fireball that scorches one of the fomorians and a cyclops and fizzles against the damp mushroom forest of the cavern. Battle is joined as the Shields rush into the cavern with sword and spell. Torinn and Peren move to engage one of the fomorians, although the creature manages to gaze upon Peren with its malevolent eye, cursing him with pain and deformity. As they move into position, however, something about the brandy leaves them swaying and staggering about the cavern. This, in turn, activates the lingering curse in Torinn’s boots, causing him to start dancing in place uncontrollably. Even with the difficulty and Torinn’s inability to fight as he staggers deeper and deeper into the mushroom forest, the others manage to dispatch the first fomorian. As they fight, they are the subject of strange interventions — more than once, some of them feel a strange elation as some lingering effect dissipates, and Peren once feels a potion hooked onto his belt by invisible hands. Bezaldooz and Valna lash out at the other three with flame and lightning, and with Peren’s flashing blades and the others spells, the creatures are eventually vanquished. Finally, they turn on the skulking ettercap and destroy it.

Once they manage to recover Torinn and keep his dancing under control, Peren tries his mystery potion to find it is a healing potion. The Shields then search the cavern to find a massive pile of treasure with the chalice atop it. Satisfied, they begin the slow march back to the Court of Fallen Leaves. They return on the afternoon of Waterday, Harvester 26, successfully delivering the chalice of autumn’s regret. Lord Maervik asks how they enjoyed the brandy, and Torinn launches himself at the eladrin, pinning him. He laughs, saying if he and Peren had performed like that earlier in the week, he would have given them the good brandy. The Court pledges troops and aid to the settlements of the world against the frost giants.

Their mission complete, the Shields of the Sorrowfell make the preparations to return to Argent.

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