The State of Albion – Gathering 1101
OK, most things going on within Albion are a big mesh of complicated things all tangled up and in very little order so I’ll try and explain a few things that have been happening over last year. Most make reference to at least one other thing so you might need to read through this more than once. Obviously an attempt to tell you everything is far too ambitious (even for me) and lots have been left out. For example I made no reference to any of the following major occurrences…
The followers of the Lightning Ancestor Tarranis claim persecution by Albion.
Sygarax is in possession of the Seventh Seal of the Concordat.
The Hollowtooth Skathen clan is banned from doing rituals for the safety of Albion.
The strange goings on at Sherbourn Keep and the ghosts of Norscan children
…hey I’m sure if you really want to know you’ll ask.
Despite a mission led by Glycell and Faramir into Trell, a few unfinished matters are still open relating to the swamplands on the East Coast of Albion. There are three factions active within Trell. Two lizardmen tribes (one led by a King and one led by a Queen) and a tribe who call themselves the Trell. The Trell worship ancestors that are derived from the Sicilian ancestors and perform a type of magic that draws power from the ground instead of using ritual circles. The Trell are currently low on numbers and need a desperate boost in population. Despite volunteering to help Corrigan and Chi have pulled out of Trell breeding program leaving only Lysander to get the difficult job done all on his own.
A group of sea walkers were tracked travelling from Silverlake to Trell. Upon investigation Silverlake by the Alchemy department it was discovered that something had changed the normal freshwater of Silverlake so that it has a high concentration of salt. Analysis of the Silverlake site also discovered a selection of pine needles that are native only to the Trell area.
A group of Seawalkers that seemed to be the same as those tracked across Albion were located at Trell. These poor souls were sailors that belonged to a ship captained
a man named Leopold who crashed on Albion’s East Coast near Trell. Every member of his crew was turned into Sea walkers except for the good captain who was protected by a curse that grants him unbelievable luck while all those around him are struck with misfortune. The captain’s curse was won in a poker game and can be passed on in the same manner.
Sea Walkers (or Caliban as they are also known) are a hybrid of an unliving pattern possessing a living person. From research undertaken by Issac Trooper it would appear that the unliving pattern slowly eats away at the person from the inside out. If the sea walker gets a diet of flesh then this seems to feed the “hunger” saving themselves. It is believed that it is the pain from this process that causes the living pattern to work with the unliving pattern. Therefore Caliban possess all the skills and abilities of their former selves.
Because they are a hybrid creature they don’t seem to follow all the rules normally followed by unliving. Mental effects and spells will effect the Caliban, although dismiss will only result in the creature being repelled. The Caliban are certainly tougher than a normal person some taking many hits to put them down. There has also been evidence that some Caliban need to be destroyed completely before they stop attacking. The Caliban seem to have a severe damaging reaction to salt and are unable to cross salt lines.
There is strong evidence that the Caliban are working for one of the Lizardmen tribes resident in Trell. It has appeared that they are allied with the Queen of the Silt Walkers. The Caliban are supplied with invocable weapons that can inflict enchanted damage for a short period of time. Faramir is currently researching the captured weapons.
In Trell the forces of Albion crossed swords with a Mirror mage called Sygarax. Sygarax is a local descended from the tribes of people called the Trell who live in the area, although she seems to no contact with them. Sygarax is powerful and has been known to use both High Magic and Solo Ritual Magic. There is also a suggestion that she has high incantations, although she has been known to associate with unliving so this may not be true. While in Trell Amryel bound her into the ground by following procedures outlined in old Sicilian texts. It appeared that just before being bound to the ground that Sygarax was trying to perform some sort of magic to destroy Winchester.
A disturbing fact that has since come to light is that, in the past the mirror mage has clashed with Katerina Grimmir and the outcome of this was to remove the mirror mage from the ground in an attempt to weaken her. It is now suspected (although certainly not confirmed) that the texts followed were written by Sygarax herself and may have been a trick to give her power.
She currently controls the Trell ritual circle working for the Queen of the Silt Walkers. According to the other lizardman tribe Sygarax performs the queens rituals, as the she doesn’t need contributors like the Queen does.
At the moots this year the Hollowtooth Skathen clan were officially made members of the faction and gained all rights that went with such a position. The Hollowtooth Greyseer is called Warpfang and has been known to pop into the faction, he can be recognised as a Grey fured Skathen with small antlers.
The effect that has made Mai Ling sleep for the past 16 months is still unresolved. Research has linked this to a ritual performed in Cornwall by a group of locals performing a coming of age ceremony. Those involved in this ritual were chased by a serpent and have since been unable to sleep. Jharik is serving as a collection point if anyone has more information relating to this matter. With it now clear that this has no connection to the issue of sleeping cats we intend to do something to resolve this matter very shortly.
The problem with all of Albion’s cats sleeping seems to have been resolved with a mission into the dreaming by the Witch Kings garden. Using Story Fae magic a group of Albion’s finest resolved the cats mourning and allowed them to return to the land of the awake. Shortly after this mission the Story Fae declared war on the people of Albion for the corruption of a story and the use of the Grimoire of Dark Dreams. At this time it is still unknown if the related magic effect causing rats to breed at supernatural rates has ceased.
The Story Fae are one of two factions resident in Far Arcadia (the other are the much weaker Dream Fae). Recently the Story Fae have discovered mortals in Albion and have been aiding them (maybe playing with them is better wording) on quests to solve their problems. It is worth pointing out that it is heavily suspected that the Story Fae are also responsible for the problems that the quests solve. Recently during the use of Story magic to resolve the problem of sleeping cats, the Harts deviated from what was written and have apparently corrupted a story. To the Story Fae, stories (actually the written word) are like their patterns and are from where they draw all their power. To prevent any more stories being corrupted the Story Fae have declared war on the Harts and specified the terms that all written word within Albion must be handed over to them by this Saturday evening.
The Story Fae also set a new story for the Harts to follow to prevent darkness entering into Albion. This story quest was deliberately made hard by the Story Fae and was not completed when a member of the Tarantula nation (who knew not what he was doing) broke the magic and emptied out a bottle of mead. As a result the Story Fae have brought three armies into Albion around Silverlake. These armies entered via portals created by animating the clay figures on the side of hills. The Story Fae’s first action was to summon up fortifications to protect these portals. It has been discovered that the Story Fae forces are following a text called “The Art of War” which contains a rule that you do not start a war in summer to avoid the spread of disease. It is suspected that the end of summer coincides with their deadline of Saturday.
It is hoped that by showing the Story Fae that the Harts will not corrupt any more written stories that it will make them rethink their attack. If not then war may will begin on Saturday and we advise that all are prepared. A dream catcher in each corner of a room/tent will prevent their lesser minions from gaining entrance, although anything bigger is going burn straight through that.
Former Hart (now Gryphon) Forester Wintergreen, of the DME, purchased a little black book from a merchant for 4 silver pieces. It has since transpired that this book is a corrupted version of the Book of Dreams and is a book of prophecy made from the nightmares of mortals. A Goza based group called The Order of the Fox claim to be the rightful owners of the book have requested we sell it to them on numerous occasions (why someone owns it, they can not simply take it. Although if the owner were to die…). They are currently brokering a peace deal between the Harts and the Story Fae in exchange for the book off of us. These terms we not agreed to.
Should they gain control of the book they also gain power over nightmares and would become an unstoppable foe, possibly powerful enough to take on all factions. Nightmares not being much different from dreams, A dream catcher in each corner of a room/tent will have a similar effect that it has with story fae minions. Plenty of light is another proven method of keeping nightmare creatures away. The Order of the Fox seems to use the red lipped laughing warrior creatures as foot soldiers. If these are invited in camp nothing will prevent them gaining entry at a later date. They have set a deadline of Saturday evening for the book to be returned to them. It is likely that they have chosen this deadline so that they can launch an attack at the same time as the Story Fae.
The war in the Summerlands still carries on. Supplies sent to reinforce the resistance seem to have been going missing and the Vampire Talisian has seemed to recover from his reported death and is once again actively working alongside the resistance against the unliving that control the realm.
The Owlmen have recently tried to plant seeds inside people of Albion claiming it would give them a way of getting the wounded resistance fighters to our healers. Chi was the only person “brave” enough to eat a seed. Over a period of a few months the seed grew in size and threaten Chi’s life. The creature was removed from Chi but unfortunately all attempts to prevent its pattern corrupting failed.
Our close allies the Wolves are currently having some problems with a big bad scary unliving werewolf by the name of Darkmane. This particularly nasty maggot infested thing, is the leader of a group called the Fellowship of the Bloodmoon (red tabards, white moon, black wolf head, not to be confused with a rather similar tabard that is purple instead of red). The Bloodmoon wish to bring about Ragnarok and have beastkin rule the world.
Darkmane’s minions have in the past used a horn on the Harts camp that allows them to control beastkin so they will try doing whatever it takes to get to his lair. Once in the lair Darkmane himself also has the ability to completely control and beguile all beastkin.
At the moots Jay, Martain, and myself were captured by this method and beguiled to not stand against Darkmane’s efforts. Standing up against Darkmane in his lair seems to be a no no, when Martain kicked off against Darkmane he was fataled on all locations and left in a ditch. The Wild Hunt retrieved the body just in time for something to be done to get Martain back on his feet.