Teaser 1216 November

Rescue and recovery efforts in the wake of Ravvin’s Perdition have slowed as hope of finding additional survivors has dwindled. Shaman from all around Rues have plied their arts toward confirming the dead to provide answers for family and friends of the missing. Losses were greatest in the Federation and the Sarachutte, with survivors numbering only in the dozens. There remains some hope at Isou University, as a large number of the faculty and students reported missing have not been confirmed dead by the Shaman, indicating that they have not entered the Void or been subsumed into Ravvin’s forces.

It is a small comfort though, as bells across Rues toll again and again for the names of those who were lost, and then some of those are encountered in monstrous transfiguration on the battlefield. Different names have greater meaning in different places, and to the people of Fortune’s Bend the Shaman have offered many names of those connected to that place and its people. They offer their sympathies as well, and a gentle warning that the list may not be complete.

From the Sarachutte Cloister
Isaacar Onnathea, Heir to the Regency of Inlyrico
Helene Luthgardis, High Matriarch of Garioch
Father Parvell Keane, husband of Lady Regent Miria Onnathea
Brother Oliver Arawny, Head Counselor of the Chappelarie
Dame Bastira Halliday, Red Rose Knight and Peacebringer

From the Shiaran Bardic College
The entirety of the Traveling Troupe Trouveau
Nicholas Drakeson

From the Federation Shipyards
Killira Filliander, Oros Voice of Her Radiant Majesty
Lady Protector Mythandros, Sister to Her Radiant Majesty
Piedro Martin, Captain of the Rattlesnake
Gavrilo Scipio, Former Head of the Ordo Flagellus
Yulia Nosko
Luzia Zarcone, Voice of the Vascoll on the Council of Regents, is currently missing

From Isou University
Lord Anton Damiano, Dean of Isou Annex, Master of Ritual Studies
Sister Isi Farraday, Follower of Jormic
Callaway Martin, Department of Anthropology
Head Archaeologist Linnaeus, Director of the Fortune’s Bend dig
Field Marshal Janelle Orisan, Ambassador to Fortune’s Bend

Though the candle has burned out for many, the great flame keeps burning and time does move on. Other news has begun to move across Rues as well. People whisper that Brother James Morlander, a trusted hunter for the church, is truly a Blasphemer and a heretic. They say that he has abused his place in the unsavory Order of Iron and Blood to keep his secret, making those who learn it disappear. The Chappelarie has promised a full investigation.

The Church of Severrin reports that a large company of Ravvin’s forces are mustering just outside the warded walls of the lost city of Helios in the Federation, and another large force near the ruined Sarachutte in Inlyrico. Smaller forces still occupy the Inlyrico-Braeus border and move in roving groups through Shiara and Volbrecht. There has been no word from the Underholme to suggest that the situation has changed.

Teaser 1216 December (End of war with Ravin)

Attacking forces of Mangled, Anguished, Ravenous, and Smothered stopped their assault suddenly, midswing, late on the Night of Guardian’s Glory. Towns that had been about to fall suddenly were not. A great hum of power lifted particles of soil from the ground and raised the hairs on humans and animal alike. The rivers and seas tumbled and tossed. In Fortune’s Bend, at the Great Cathedral in Paradise, at the Guardian’s temple in Fort Firetol, beyond the wall of Helios, a great spiraled hand blazed in victory, proclaiming the triumph of Severrin.

Ravvin was defeated, stripped of his divine blessing, and cast out of the heavens. Without the touch of Severrin’s merciful hand, he lost all control of the Entropic Transfer and the Undead still attached to it. Those ravaged bodies, robbed of all impulses save their own hunger, fled the battlefield or were slaughtered by the rallying populace. Soon after, the Bled and Plagued withdrew as well, disappearing into the night or crawling into the deep fissures in the land.

While much remains to be seen in the aftermath of the titanic fight, the celebration, the relief, the joy can not be denied. Imperial soldiers who were certain that the night would bring the final swing of their swords were, at the sign of the Hand of Mercy, suddenly able to win the day. Beleaguered towns were liberated, and the families whose only hope previously was to remain undiscovered in their cellars were led out to see the great beacons. The Valar stemming the tide of enemy forces from Helios were, at last, able to lower their spears with the knowledge that Tor Mythra was saved.

No one wants to compare who sacrificed the most, or whose loss was greatest. With the great Hand of Severrin lighting the earth, there were only tears of relief and gratitude for those who brought the need for such sacrifices to an end. Before the shaking of the realms dealt a shocking blow to easy travel and the sending of word, one final offering made it through, a poem of victory for the Heroes of Fortune’s Bend.

I am the soldier holding the line,
Standing but seeing my death.
I’ll stay the fight, the bloody fight,
And when I fall, rise without soul,
To fell all I love with my might.

I shout to my comrades and wonder,
Will we live the new day?

I am the parent hiding their child,
Sitting in dark and in dread.
I am afraid of the light, the precious light,
The nightmare’s foe, the child’s haven,
But now would reveal us to monster’s sight.

I sing to them now, and wonder,
Will we live the new day?

I am the leader that cares for my people,
Now seeing them suffer and die.
I can not find the right, none of it right,
No exit, no rally, no bolstering words,
So instead we join hands and hold tight.

Together we we ask of the heavens,
Will we live the new day?

I am the hero of Fortune’s Bend,
Miracle town, hope of the world.
I stand on the edge of the night, the ultimate night,
At the boundary of heaven and earth,
I am the soldier’s fight, the child’s light,
I am the one who makes right.

By my hand it is decided,
Will we live the new day?

The dark, it speaks,
And thunder breaks,
Waves boil on the sea,
Rues all shudders
Sister and brothers,
What will become of me?

For a moment all is quiet,
The Sacred grips us all,
The heroes fight is over,
Will Severrin rise or fall?

And from out the darkened sky and over the black sea,
Let all rejoice,
Let all cry praise
Into every living soul shines the Guardian’s Hand of Mercy!

I am the simple soul that lived,
Through the Guardian’s Glory,
To see the sight, the most holy sight,
Of victory, of peace, of life,
To see another day dawning clean and bright.

To those of Fortune’s Bend we say,
Heroes, live this new day.

Event Teaser Spring 1217

As the world of Rues begins to recover from Ravvin’s Perdition and the Night of Guardian’s Glory, there are now some days that pass without them being mentioned. Some folk, in the luckier parts of the world, can look around and not be confronted with the aftermath of war. However, most of Rues still shows the scars, the chasms in the ground, the reconstructed buildings, the piles of rubble and waste, the number of people wearing mourning tokens, and the beasts and Undead that still wander. For these folk, and for all who remember, tales of hope and humanity are welcome. The Ballad of Black Light is particularly popular, recounting the tale of Vayros Black, from whom the ray of light came during the pitched battle against Ravvin. There are also tales of the Harriers, the fearless exploration and skirmish group that has kept the quarantine camp on the northern edge of the Byse safe as cures for Heshmet’s plagues are found.

Another tentative sign of peace and normalcy is the reopening of the gate to the Iron Lily, the upscale spa and relaxation bar in Polazzo. Petra Alexander will be opening the gates to those residing in Fortune’s Bend on Saturday, with accommodations for those who prefer to relax in the finest of comforts as well as for those who just want to get drunk on boxed wine.

Of those places most affected by the wandering undead, most of the reports are heavily weighted with appearances of “shambling hordes dragging their legs behind them, brandishing weapons covered with rotting meat in their one arm.” Where these attacks are worst, survivors report seeing a man with intent, a leader with a wound in his chest who seemed to brush off the attacks of even their best warriors.

The already troubled empire was further shaken in the winter by the sudden devastation of a strong imperial family, the Giovanizzi. While those most closely tied to the imperial regime were not directly affected, around one fourth of the family suddenly died on the same day, at almost the same times. No cause has been publicly identified, though those close to the investigation have leaked that it was an arcane affliction. This has caused fear and alarm throughout, and has even spurred some groups to call for a second inquisition into the arcane and those who use it.

Those Giovanizzi who lost their lives were all living or stationed within Anbara and Inlyrico. The Giovanizzi family is deep in mourning and the emperor has issued a public statement of condolences for their great losses.

Sparians and Ereskial have both been spotted traveling to and from the Imperial Bureaucracy at Fort Hawksclaw. They have been close-mouthed about the details of these meetings, but those in the know say that there is a strong chance that Drakkenspar will join the empire. Whispers around the Ereskial meetings are less promising, including demands of sovereignty. Wholly different rumors speak of a new Ereskial City, one functioning outside the previous iron grip of the oligarchy, called Renatus. It is said to be near the underground river, accessible to small vessels. They have made it clear they are open to negotiations and on the lookout for the best trade offers.

Perhaps because of all the other things to watch, there has been little said about the movements of a group calling themselves the Exalted and operating out of the Chappelarie holdings. Members of this group typically wear white emblazoned with the image of hands bound in supplication, with a key and three red drops breaking the chain. Many of the small outlying churches display this symbol along with the symbol of their deity.

From the regency of Volbrecht comes news of a curious law recently passed by the Warlord Regent. While his focus has mostly been on the reconstruction of his Regency and the protection and reclamation of his northern territory, this law seems unrelated and specifies that no Brecht may interfere with a vested clergy of Jormic who is practicing their faith, so long as that practice does not remove bonded or indentured servants from the regularly expected tasks.

Word has spread from Inlyrico around Rues that the Wild Nation is getting their feet back under them as well, though recent council negotiations were disrupted when the Wolf tribe representative walked out, breaking council for the first time since the tribal accords.

Teaser Feb 1216

Emissaries, criers, and bards across Rues have been spreading the news – the joint efforts of the churches, working in union with Fortune’s Bend, have dealt heavy blows to Ravvin’s armies! Even though hordes of monsters remain, songs heralding the defeat of Lord Wyrving, one of Ravvin’s most vicious generals, can be heard in bars and taverns across the empire and even into the Federation. Fortune’s Bend, regarded as the beacon of hope for beleaguered armies and towns, rolls cherished from tongues as the victory is celebrated.

There is no time for rest, though. No one has ever accused the Brechts of their words speaking louder than their actions. Bare days after the imperial princess was recovered from one of their estates, a number of warlords along the northeastern borders of Volbrecht have declared secession. The powerful Weinart, their known bannermen the Zweig, the Waechter, and the Mensch, along with several other weaker warlords and a large number of Krugs, proclaimed in late November that they no longer accept Imperial Rule.

At first treated as a bit of a joke, no one has cracked a smile in recent weeks as the secession remains largely unchallenged. The empire and the Warlord Regent alike are faced with pulling their troops from areas threatened by Ravvin’s armies to mount an invasion, compiled with the recent troop losses to The Reaping. The Brechtish traitors have mustered their own knights into a sizable force that is massing on the southern border of Pyredown.

Princess Bellasara has spoken out strongly against the imperial traitors and expressed gratitude for those troops who occupied Volbrecht to effect a search, and particularly to those of Fortune’s Bend who ultimately returned her to her family. In appreciation she is making an immediate second tour to bolster the overextended imperial troops, and will be making a stop in Fortune’s Bend on the evening of the 20th to show her appreciation for their work. Rumor is that she will attend the evening meal with a small retinue and after the meal will hear petitions from those who live in the neutral town. She has been outspoken against the idea of remaining within the palace for a time, stating that her duty as princess is to lead, and she will lead by example in immediately returning to doing good for the empire after her tribulations at the hands of the traitors.

On the other side of Rues, Shiara continues the slow spiral into chaos. The land traditionally known for its beauty, art, and peace has had trouble upon trouble heaped on their backs for the last few years. Many of their powerful and beloved leaders have been lost to death or sickness, and the fertile earth itself has become blighted in spots, and host to vicious creatures. Amidst these difficulties, the families have fought with each other and the armies of Ravvin have marched. Following the loss of Lord Alomaine Banrion, the young Lord Mason Atasir was often seen at the head of the Shiaran forces. Now he too has been diverted from that protection as he investigates the whereabouts of Lady Juliet Banrion, the current head of the Banrion house.Words of support have come to Shiara from all corners, but none of the regencies have much more than words to offer in these troubled times.

Not everyone is Rues is suffering, of course. In the resort city of Polazzo in Inlyrico the carnival and masquerade season is in full swing. Mid winter is the time that the wealthy and privileged classes vie with each other to hold the most festive and interesting party. Usually the attendance to these swank affairs are limited to the very elite in high society, but rumor has it that this year some messengers have been seen traveling to Fortune’s Bend with bags of invitations.

Teaser April 1216

There has been some minor relief for the small towns of Rues, as Ravvin’s forces seem to be more scarce in some of the outlying regions. However, in addition to the relief it has provided the strategists with a new worry. Where did those forces go? Is Ravvin gathering his monsters somewhere? The largest known force still masses at the border of Inlyrico and Braeus, and it is assumed that at least twenty smaller communities and the larger town of Manarea were completely consumed.

Prospects seem no better in the occupied Underholme, from whence no messenger has arrived, nor scout returned for several weeks. The increased number of Alved serving in the imperial military has proved a great boon for the beleaguered troops of Pyredown and all the towns they protect.

Even as Ravvin moves about, life goes on in Rues. Fields are being opened for planting, seeds are being sown, outfits made and mended just as they have always been. There are still many in the larger cities for whom the forces of Ravvin seem a faraway threat, depressing headlines in the quarterly circular.

Around Fortune’s Bend there has been an increased effort at culture and commerce. Final arrangements have been made to create a gate between the town and the Green Willow tea house in Braeus. The gate will open Saturday afternoon and it will afford the residents of Fortune’s Bend with an alternative location to socialize and dine.

At Pyredown’s border, the traitorous warlords who have defied imperial rule have lost some of their southern border to the knights of Warlord Regent Volkmar and Warlord Baldemaar, but they also have made some progress north into Pyredown. A few small villages have been taken, and reports from those areas observe the flying of a new flag, three black swords on a red field with the words “We do not bend.” They have called it the banner of Weisbaden, the supposed name of their new nation.

The long-time regent of Shiara, Lady Lyrenna Silvia, has stepped down just a few weeks after the equally surprising abdication of her Seneschal DeValco Silvia. With their departure, the Regency of Shiara is left in the hands of Lord Bartolo Dwyre, who served only a few weeks as Lyrenna’s Seneschal before her decision to leave the regency in his hands in favor of a position as a companion for the princess and the emperor’s new Advisor on the Arts and Humanities.

Spring is touching all of Rues, waking up the new world after winter.. Across the two great nations, everyone is holding their breath, hoping that the new world, when it reveals itself, will resemble the old.

Teaser July 1216

Daring Contestants! Avid Spectators! Lucky Gamblers!

The Beautiful and Shining Sun of Anbara, Her Majesty Queen ElSutrah XXIX, wishes to recognize those regencies who have come together in the spirit of unity and kinship in the Munafasa World Games. All peoples of Rues were invited to contribute a cultural competition to the Games, and it with pride that those offerings are now revealed.

In her Generosity, the Unbreakable Lady of Anbara has granted each Cultural offering the honor of being a Spectacle, with grander prizes and greater power to offer to the troops!

The host regental domain of Anbara puts forth their traditional game of Dichotomy as well as the reigning champion of Dichotomy Henyan Gavaskar to challenge those who dare!

Our neighbors to the north offer the Brechtish Handshake, a game of strength of will and arm, in which contestants attempt to force one another’s hand to the table.

Pyredown, seat our our beloved emperor, offers a traditional training exercise known as Banners and Blood, in which teams attempt to infiltrate or storm each other’s stronghold and capture the banner that lies within!

The peoples of the Wild Nation are represented by the game Fleet Fire, in which marksmen attempt to hit their targets while on the move.

The Pure Lands bless the games with Keep ’em Up, in which those who heal will rule the day!

Braeus, famed home of Isou University, offers Knowledge is Power, in which all questions historical and factual are the game, and knowledge is the way to win!

From all the rivers of Rues flows the Vascoll card game known as Coup, in which one may bluff and lie their way into power.

The Eight Great Houses of Shiara, in conjunction with the Shiaran Bardic College, will host the game O Glory Glory, in which historical battles are reenacted, and the ghosts of those battles sometimes appear!

The Federated Kingdom of the Selda’nire, by Her Radiant Majesty’s grace, contribute their cultural contest of First Cut to the Munafasa World Games, in which the contestant with the fastest weapon draw wins!

Under the mountains, the Ereskial engage in a game known as Run or Die, in which contestants may not bring weapons to the arena, but must make do with what they can find on the course. In the spirit of unity, they have offered this game to the lineup for World Games!

And last, the wandering people of the sand, collectively called the Merdahd’i, have arranged a whimsical hunting game called Finders Keepers in which players, through the course of the day, must locate all the items on a list.

All bless Her Majesty, whose wisdom and magnanimity has brought such Spectacles to our eyes!

((OOG Note: Please remember to let us know if you are taking part in any of these games by replying to me:
Ring of Champions (Your Team of friends vs. Our Team of NPCs)
O Glory Glory (Battle Reenactment)
Face Off (NPC Impersonation Contest)
Dichotomy (Othello vs. the Champion)
Off Limits (Traps and Locks mod- no particular header needed)
Have It and Eat It (Dessert Competition))

Teaser Oct 1211

In the intervening months Rues has been aflame with debate, fiery sermon, and Crusade. The only land that has been quiet is that of the “Wild Nation”. They have begun settling in for the winter; a winter they predict to be harsh and tumultuous. The Empire and Federation have been discussing the Proposal for Decency put forth by Brother Parvell Keene of Inlyrico. Both nations have also been in deep and often heated discussion regarding the future legal status of Fortune’s Bend and which nation will claim ultimate ownership. Talk throughout the land is that of war. Young men and women have left their homes to join the Crusade against the blaspheming Al’tiesh.

Inlyrico, with its churches in support, is calling for the ratification of the Proposal for Decency. If ratified it would require all artistic endeavors to be passed through the church for review and, if deemed necessary, censorship. It has been met with secular opposition and the time of decision is soon at hand.

The Church of Istarum has called upon its militant faithful to rid the land of the Al’tiesh, once and for all. Once the call of Crusade went out the other churches quickly followed suit and joined with the Church of Istarum. What started with a sermon quickly turned into a full scale operation. There are no longer any places for the Al’tiesh to hide.

The Al’tiesh have concentrated their number and started a bloody push for Fortune’s Bend. The military minds of the Crusade are confused by their seemingly suicidal march. Why would such a potent foe choose to push for the taking of ground which would allow their enemy to surround them completely?

Lastly, the Damiano Family has made a substantial donation to the various churches as well as to the tavern within Fortune’s Bend in appreciation of all of the hard work the heroes have done in combatting the Twin Demon Threat. No adventurer within Fortune’s Bend will have to pay for tithing or food this gathering thanks to the generosity of the esteemed Damiano Family.

Teaser Jan 1212

The winter in Fortune’ Bend has been mild, and yet the silence of the season reigns just as though the land were frozen. An eerie, cold aura has settled around the “miracle town” since the autumn, turning away visitors and making the livestock weak in their pastures. The faint purple glow of the Moth Gate’s protection has grown, swallowing all but the temples and a few other points into the pervasive stillness. Those who have come away say that Fortune’s Bend has the feeling of a pause in conversation, an entire area just waiting for something to break the silence.

The stillness there is punctuated by the rest of Rues, which has exploded with the recent political and philosophical conflicts. Justicier Berin Algulin has stated that nothing short of his own death will postpone the trial of Iyar Sende even one day more, and those fighting for or against the Proposal for Decency have become rabid in their support of their cause. Inlyrico has unwillingly become the stage for many of these conflicts in the wake of their decision to adopt the Proposal as regency law. Renegade troupes have been spotted all over Inlyrico, masked and costumed actors who rush into an area, perform some part of a play, poem, or song that has been banned by the Chappelarie, and just as quickly depart. The response from Inlyrico has been to set the Rose Knights to guard the most popular borders and gatehouses, searching all who pass through and detaining those who have implements of the entertainer’s trade. It is said that in particular, bards and friars have nearly disappeared from the regency streets.

From the nearby Imba’nire Forest,stories of a rising threat have been carried out by the missionaries and traders who travel the Wild Nation’s home. They have reported that some of the nomadic nation’s villages have been hit hard by a mysterious, monstrous army that sweeps in and kills everything in sight with as much carnage as possible. Elders within the forest say that the bodies of the dead are joining the armies that kill them.

It is said that Turning Day, a holiday of Garioch in which the old year is put aside for the new, will bring changes to all things. Indeed, only a few days after this holiday passed, a shocking rumor began to leak from Fort Firetol. The usual “unnamed sources” claimed that the new gem of the empire, the little town of Fortune’s Bend, may have intentions to secede from its all-powerful parent. Thus far the rumor seems confined to the capital and immediate surroundings while politicos of every stripe try to verify the truth of it. The only certainty is that there has been no official word from the palace one way or another.

Teaser April 1212

After a mild winter in much of Rues, the lands are buzzing with new life and the promise of a prosperous spring. Purple fields of Evelyn Eyes are popping up throughout the lands of Inlyrico and crops throughout the various regencies are being prepared as the climate rises. Spring may be bringing in warmer breezes and soft rains, but it’s not the only climate that has been changing lately.
There is a growing tension in the aftermath of the Iyar Sende trial. Skirmishes between those in favor of the Proposal for Decency and those against have been reported along the roads. In this midst of this political hotbed, Braeus has finally offered a voice in defense of Shiara. There have been no reports of reactions from the other regencies to date.

While conflicts rise in Inlyrico, forces from the Imperial Army have been seen moving closer to Fortunes Bend. It has been said that discussions involving the both the Empire and the Federation have taken place with the denizens of Fortune’s Bend. The rumors of the town’s “secession” remain unverified.

Reports of undead forces growing are coming from the Imba’nire Forests. Because of their diminishing numbers, those of the Wild Nation are slowly losing their territories to the monstrous armies that are sweeping across the lands. With the growing threat, the Empire has been reported to have offered their support; however, it appears that Wild Nation leaders have continually declined aid. Missionaries and traders still brave enough to travel the lands say that the situation has become “desperate”.

Those who frequent the woods outside of Fortune’s Bend have said that “natural anomalies” have been found recently moving in large numbers and have been aggressive when in close proximity. Few travelers have been seriously injured; however, some lesser traveled roads and paths have become increasingly difficult to pass. This has put a minor damper in commerce surrounding Fortune’s Bend and has slowed down some progress at various archeological dig sites.

Within the little town is an anomaly of a different kind. A rift opened in the earth outside the guild hall, awash in faint light. Those who came near the rift reported hearing faint moans and wails, even sometimes names being called from within the darkness. However, the mysterious rift has not yet revealed its origins or purpose to those brave enough to wander close.

Teaser Jan 1213

There has been little heard from the Miracle town of Fortune’s Bend since the early winter, and the area seems gripped in a strange, sad silence. Amidst the oddness, news has come from Inlyrico that the High Patriarch of Severrin, Aaron Hawthorne, will be arriving with his entourage in the little town on the first night of the new month. The High Patriarchs do not often have time to travel, and many are wondering what new honor the citizens of the little town have earned to receive a personal visit from the most holy of Severrin’s faithful. Despite the rarity of the High Patriarch’s public appearances, it has been made known that he will accept no pilgrims, supplicants or parishioners for the duration nor brook any interruption or delay to his travel.

All over Rues the land is in the grip of the harshest winter in recent record. Even the hardiest crops that would normally defy the cold have been succumbing to frost and starved earth. The cold is unrelenting and the farmers have commented that this years frosts seem somehow malicious, and the winds angry. Many of the smaller villages are experiencing food shortages, and those with no outside resources are near to starvation. Frostbitten refugees from these tiny towns have been found shivering their way down the hard-packed roads, seeking help for their hometowns.

It was rumored in the summer that the emperor had blessed the union of a young noble couple, the first blessing given by the new emperor. Not much was known at the time, but now the announcement has spread like wildfire from Pyredown. The union of Godrick Dwyre and Nassra Dwyre, an imperial blessing on their union, will take place in May when the world wakes up from the long winter. Invitations have gone out far and wide, welcoming people to the Banrion Summer Home in Pyredown to see the two families join as one. Spring is the time of new beginnings, and the political world is buzzing with rumors and theories, wondering if the marriage will even take place or if the intended will end up as star-crossed lovers in warring regencies.

A more quiet announcement was made as well, and many are watching to see how the churches will react. The emperor has created a new Advisory position, that of Arcane Advisor to His Imperial Majety, to be the guide on all matters arcane. The honor of this new position falls first on the shoulders of Katarina Musaphi, who hails from a respected family in Braeus. This marks a new level of acceptance for the arcane within Rues, a prospect that is met with eagerness by some and trepidation by others. No matter how their opinion falls on the arcane, many believe it to be a risky move for a relatively young and unestablished emperor.