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"Lost Continent: Flight From Muurdaan" (BeckonCall's FNB!)


World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC
The Falconer's ears perked when the damned man spoke. Clearly, here was someone who at least claimed to know of ancient knowledge... knowledge of these lands before the end. Surely, it must know of the history of Berytos. "Suffering One. Will you not impart some more knowledge with us so that we may avoid such terrible fates? What has befallen this grand city of Berytos? There are dozens of godlings around here. Divine, magical and dangerous beings and artifacts. Will you tell us more? Help the future and seek redemption and peace in your suffering. There must have been a purpose for this fate. The Neird, the Drowning One, the Horned One, the Green Goddess, the Blood Fountain. Are they to be trusted?"
"Each are their own, Exile -- but I will tell you this -- you know not what you hold in your hands... what dies for your intent."

"Berytos as the other mage-states thought we had the answers for all things combing the tombs of gods for their treasures -- then combing the tombs for the shattered fragments of gods themselves. It solved all our problems, in two ways -- it took them away, then they undid us completely."

"You speak of compassion and redemption-- both of which I seek, so I will tell you this more -- Divorce yourself from the tears, if you can. They were never meant for the hands of man, titan, or god... you will come to realize their obscenity in time."

With that, the hanging one spit into the void below. May all my blood fall there, below -- if mercy is a virtue you possess."
The Falconer nodded at the Suffering One's advice. These artifacts and gods were things that undid this once grand city... that much was evident. He remembered how Cassandra mentioned once that there was something.... sad about these crystals. Needless to say, he would report back to Lord Caelis about the dangers of the tears... and the gods. The Falconer looked at the rest of the expedition and mentioned "If there are no objections. Shall we now put him out of his suffering? Also, will we all agree to not use these tears unless for emergencies? With such grim warnings... I am inclined to advise Lord Caelis and the Colonial Government to simply no longer use the tears and have them placed in a display. To remind us of the allure of power and its ultimate ability to corrupt and collapse the greatest of nations and peoples."


A Servant of King and Country
The Expedition
A hundred livestock. Kearney thought to himself, stupified. Where would they get a hundred livestock?

He turned and listened as the Falconer quizzed the unfortunate. His proclamations about the Tears fell on his ears like heavy weights.

"I will agree to such a bargain," Kearney said. He reached forward and gingerly withdrew all of the weapons that had impaled the chained man and handed them off to one of his soldiers before taking a saw and beginning to cut away at his chains. By the end of ten minutes, the priest had cut the manacles free of the chains that held them and let the suffering man down from his perch and onto the platform they were standing on by hooking the chain and pulling it towards them.

"Well, we have more information than we started with," Kearney said. "Let us return before nightfall sets in again."

The clergyman turned to the cursed one. "Prithee tell me your name, sir. And accompany us back to the colony and share with us what you know. You may count yourself among friends."

@Beckoncall @Heyitsjiwon


World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC
@Shireling :

"....Call me Manhk, the Chronicler. You are right in your deeds... Perhaps I have not yet served my pennance... perhaps I will know when my sentence is fulfilled should I die on the outside, rather than on the basement floor of this library."

He pulled the tears from his wounds himself, and upon doing so collapsed in a rain of ashes. The tears were all that kept his body intact, it seemed.

Pennance served or not, the Chronicler was done -- but what was to be done of his treasure?
The Attolian Falconer picked up one of the tears, and handed another to the Stout. "Let us carry them back to the Colony where we can all decide what to do with these wretched things. Perhaps, a museum of some sort. Regardless, let it be under the aegis us all and serve as a reminder that there are powers even beyond the gods and we would be folly to tempt fate with such power." He then handed a third tear and last tear to another expedition member. This was a burden that all had to willingly bear. No law or authority could convince anyone other wise to not abuse such an awful power.


ゆうじん A
In the deep woods of the gnolls, Sir Bors had some difficulty in discussing with the gnolls, but with some gestures and grunts thrown into the discussion and bartering. He made it clear that the Attolians sought treasure for their hundred or so Mud Elf heads. Thus, the gnolls brought out numerous trinkets that could buy two ships. However, even more interesting was that they had two carapaces of the Cull, and offered them in exchange instead. Sir Bors knew the importance of these shells... and how they could be defeated. The gnolls had only known defeat with no chance of victory over the Cull. A strong statement would draw much support and boost their morale. Thus, the trade expedition took the two shells and headed back to the Colony.

However, the very next day, the Attolians returned with Lord Caelis. With them, they brought one of the shells, but curiously a small cauldron filled with an ethereal golden liquid. A confused throng of gnolls gathered around the expedition. When a decent amount of gnolls had gathered, Lord Caelis took his sword and on his command the carapace was dipped into the cauldron and taken out. With a swift swing, the gnolls were covered in a golden, glittering mist and a large portion of the carapace was left completely shattered. Surprised yips and grunts filled the woods. They were clearly not unimpressed. Caelis then finally spoke. "Witness! We have discovered a material that can render the deathly armor of the Cull into a brittle golden rust. However, this is not a cheap material to produce. If the gnolls support us and wish to defeat the Cull, then will they not provide the Colony with economic support and healthy trade?" Several of the larger gnolls quickly left the mob and went deeper into the woods towards the gnoll village. They soon returned, baring the words and will of the Bitch Queen. "Enough treasure to buy six ships. That is what the Bitch Queen will give to make this golden water. She also send and allow wagons for trade."

Caelis graciously accepted. That was enough wealth to make enough of the compound to arm all the gnolls and 100 of the Colony's own. It seemed like things were looking up for the Colony and its future, but as always... there were more dangers around the corner in the New World. The gnolls then began to express concern with their rudimentary Common. It was a warning. There seemed to be some sort of being coming from the North East ever since the Witch of the Woods and the Horned One were felled. Called the Malaphite, it seemed to be a continuously growing... nay creeping vine being according to the gnolls. It had corrupted the woods to the Northeast and consumed it completely with its mass. In addition, it had demanded for the bodies of the fallen from the battles and the bones from the pit below the Great Trees and seemed to value bones for some reason. Perhaps this was why the gnolls seemed to value the Mud Elf heads so much? Regardless, the gnolls were able to somewhat contain the Malaphite with magic, but it continued to grow and would likely reach the river by Summer. Physical attempts to deal with the Malaphite with fire led to the gnolls turning into... fertilizer. With that warning, the Attolian expedition returned home, but with less joy and hope that they had just a few moments before.


Commentary of the 1st Colonial Government Referendum, given by the Colonial News Paper.

At the Colonial Government's Meeting, there was a vote on the Attolian proposals. The proposals were:

1. The Formal Establishment of a Colonial Garrison. It requires each member to provide at least 10 soldiers to form the core of an elite quick reaction force. These soldiers would train with each other constantly, and only be deployed in the event of an attack on a member of the Colonial Government or war. Such an organization would have likely helped the Reinen and saved many lives as the time needed to muster all the factions' forces led to the complete destruction of the Reinen settlement. Ultimately, the purpose of this force is not to win the battle but to quickly deploy and effectively fight to buy time for the rest of the Colony to deploy its soldiers in force. This force will be led by the most veteran and skilled soldier among the soldiers given. However, this position of Commander is a permanent position and will be full time. Meaning the Commander cannot be taken off duty unless a proper replacement is decided by the Colonial Government.

2. All drugs must be sold through and approved by the healer's guild. Meaning that no one is legally allowed to sell drugs intended as medicine unless it has been condoned by the Healer's Guild (kind of like a pharmacy system). Clearly, this means that the Attolians will willingly give its entire supply of Opium to the Healer's Guild as long as the proceeds are returned to the Attolians.

3. Any further major and significant construction from this point on in the proximity of the Colony will require approval from the Government in the interest of city planning and zoning. Otherwise, we face numerous independent settlements with little sense on how infrastructure is built. (Major construction would in general be things that would require changes or addition to the map that Beck makes.)

4. All goods and beings entering and leaving the Colony must be subject to examination by the Custom's Office. The Custom's Office is currently largely an Attolian led endeavor, but other members are requested to provide aid as well. There are significant defenses and fortifications up, but little of it is manned other than by the Exiles.

5. The Colonial Government formally adopts the Pantheon and encourages the freedom of religion for all Colonists.

For proposition 1, the Victorians voted "Aye" with no reservation or commentary. The Ratkin also voted "Aye" and volunteered their Dirty Paws.The Tyren on the other hand voted "Aye", but held some reservations. Notably, they commented how few warriors that they had and they wanted to keep them at their settlement for their self protection. However, the Tyren were willing to have Bruul take up the position of Commander. Lord Caelis thanked the Tyren for the contribution of a war mage. However, he expressed concern of having a Commander in charge of a unit with none of his own people in it. Instead, the Attolians proposed that Bruul should be considered as the equivalent of 10 soldiers due to his specialty and skills as a mage and should be considered the magical adviser of the group. The Tyren conceded. The Attolians also commented that they, as the proposer of the laws, would be willing to provide 9 Halberdiers and a Sundered King as a Commander, notably Sir Bors who is a proven warrior and experienced Knight of Attolia.

For Prop 2, the Victorians and Tyren voted "Aye" with no commentary. However, the Ratkin decided to abstain in a surprising move. Given Ratkin and Tyren resistance to Prop 3, Lord Caelis proposed to drop prop 3 completely if the Ratkin give their approval to Prop 2 as it seems that Lord Wolff sought unanimous agreement as the precedent for the Colony to pass major legislation such as these. The Ratkin gave their approval with this concession, seemingly out of respect and consideration for the Attolian cause.

Prop 4 was nearly killed as well. The Vote came to be two firm "Ayes" by the Victorians and the Ratkin with the Ratkin even offering manpower to help. The Tyren though expressed concern that the searches encroached upon their liberties and seemed too similar to the Muurdaan laws. Caelis clarified that these searches would occur in checkpoints at ports as they are only meant to inspect goods leaving and entering the colony. With this clarification, the Tyren hesitantly agreed and voted in the affirmative.

Prop 5 passed unanimously with no commentary or reservation.

However, it should be noted that the Attolians also brought up the question of spoils of war found during the expedition to the Mud Elf lands. Among the treasures found were: One unit of wealth is found on gnoll bodies from trophies and embossments. 15 magical scimitars and 20 enchanted wood shields are picked from a unit of fallen elite gnolls. Expedition finds 6 units of "snake fruit", 4 units of "Diamond Yeast", 20! units of anger booze (in a supply chamber behind the brewery)

No actions had been taken to split these and thus had remained under Attolian possession for now. Should no steps be taken to split them among the expedition members, then the Attolians would presume that there was no interest in the items and simply claim them.
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World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC

The Gnolls warned of the worst winter to come to the region in what they said would be a century... but the colony already saw it coming. a White wall, decending from the mountains -- it was like a sea of avalanches. The already brisk winds soon carried an endless snow, which first filled every crevice then used each foothold to stay put where it found purchase. The icicles came, and the winds bent them. The snow piled high covering the roads and in weeks after the hit of the bitter season, desperate farmers even drew the winter crops in an early harvest and did their best to stockpile in the face of far more grim circumstance than forseen. Subterranean crops like the attolian greenhouse were saved only with full colony cooperation and magic as well -- and a good thing too... every scrap of food would be needed. It was not a question of waiting out the winter -- people had to eat to maintain body temperture, many of the exiles piled into the temple of dracos for warmth and the "eternal fire" there kept their prayer and vigil to the great Dracos to keep the ice from locking their spines.

A week later, communication in the colony broke down almost completely. Only the longdead and the Zebani, who brought supplies of coal where and when they could find the buried structures of the colony from below. All of Harun'Taras pulled within the sacred glade and huddled in frost.

The Victorians first used their lighthouse to heat the colony, but something went wrong -- and while some said they saw the fires and the conflict -- as if the victorians fought a mighty battle in thier own citadel -- the only thing that was certain was that the Victorian Holdfast exploded. It's shell would be found later with little evidence of what struggle took them... only the shell of their tear of fire, and the twisted melted armor of the victorians stood testament to what might have happened.

The passion magic of the GewGaw kept them willful and defiant, but life atop shearcliffs was even colder than in the flats and hills below. It became a question of who would would survive the winter -- and who could stand to stay even if they could.

During the winter supply ships came, and some factions would leave with them. When finally the winds ceased and the ice chiselled away from each doorway and district,
What would remain of the colony would pick up the pieces of the shattered ice.


The highborn, it was uncertain what they had done to survive the winter, but they closed off their district, and through angelic aid and magical lore, kept solid sending what aid they could.

The attolians had prepared for the worst, and the worst had exceeded their expectations. However, in readiness they survived -- by winters end many retreated into the sewers and greenhouses below the earth.

Of the Al-Turbansk -- none would know what became of them -- during the breakdown of communication it was rumored they sought a shield from the cold in the lee of shearcliffs -- but they were never seen again. The spring thaw revealed some of their number huddled in the mine of vines, and others scattered in the hills west of shearcliffs, and others well into spring were seen frozen in the swamps, in their eyes some saw hope, some resignation.

The houses of the GewGaw fell quickly -- without the shielding of the forest from the mountain cold, the GewGaw became "beautiful popsickles" in the unrelenting cold. The Tyren would find their collapsed houses and squatting manors locked and devoid of life in the spring thaw. One wondered what treasures they might have left behind!

By winter's end... The Ratkin had abandoned the colony before the winter pack-ice overtook the port... even the sea icing before winters end.

The Tyren had secured some kind of diplomatic marriage that was to bring large numbers of Tyren to the new world -- these ships ended up proposing rescuing the Tyren and taking them away... However the Tyren refused. They would not leave their new home, a sanctuary of their own away from the old empire -- and they would not move their chieftain, Orm -- who still slumbered the full length of the winter in coma, waking hale and almost laughably hearty at the first spring thaw. Furs and livestock critically met the needs of the colony, and within their magical glade with the aid of the wood elves, they had some measure of succor from the biting cold... The arrival of the new Tyren brought with it new warriors and personalities, and with that came some natural strife and competition among the braves... especially the yet unnamed in battle. The Elders of the new band of Tyren expected a diplomatic marriage to link the caravans as one -- The offered bride was supposed to be for Orm, the beautiful golden-pelted Estetri -- A Tyren of such beauty all males of breeding age would rut at the sight of her. Brul said such matters would await the awakening of the chief, even as his heart too secretly burned for her...

The Fennec's excavation was almost completely covered with ice. Had they not access to ratkin tunnels they might have been trapped in their homes.... before even the ratkin tunnels iced up... at least the ones close to the surface. But the Fennec wouldn't give up. They actually profited developing a trading network with the longdead, delivering liquid courage and comfort for the supplies they desperately needed. The once reviled nest of giant ants became a staple supply of protein for the fennec when all other food supplies failed, and by the end of winter their larder was filled with honey-roasted ants to share with the populace when communication and trade recovered from breaking down. They were a hard sell at first, but hunger saw more than one faction eagerly anticipating a fresh shipment of charred insects.

The learners square broke down completely -- the entire operation migrating into the attolian housing district where it attempted to keep things in service. The Kobolds and other desperate minorities sought solace there... and they were welcomed to fight the winter with them that defied it.

Of the Aymaran, the worst must have befell them... some said they ran afoul of the zebani and were killed by them during the winter -- some say the cold was too much for their lizard physiologies and they descended into an animal madness... and cannibalism. Only the largest skeletons of the Croc-men could be found in their holds... the biggest scarred and leaders, their frozen skeletons all that remained.

Only the Firebeard dwarves were relatively spared... the cold did not come to them below ground -- at least not to such an extent. They did what they could to provide succor and help to the colony during the winter -- mostly in trade for what meager rations could afford to be traded.

It was uncertain what befell the stouts -- before the ice blanketed the colony they severed all ties with the outside, could they possibly have been tough enough to survive on their own?

The season would be called henceforth "The killing Lean" -- and it remained to be seen which factions would rise from the ice, and which would be found to have succumbed.


BECK'S NOTE: I'm aware that the game locked down for an extended period of time... this was the result of many real world factors, but also because the game was sagging under the weight of factions that were no longer playing. I am using "the killing lean" to be an event that kills or drives off the defunct factions in the colony so I can focus my detail and attention SOLEY on the people who want to continue playing the game. The game will continue AT LEAST until the resolution of the Cull event.

@Everyone -- please see this post and PM or post that you intend to continue playing the game or not. Factions that do not respond in a week or two will be considered found dead in spring's first thaw, but those that stay with the game will likely have overcome the ordeal, though posts regarding how factions survived the winter especially may give bonuses to enduring the hardship.

I have not given fates to everyone, and I may have given fates to people who still wish to remain in the game. Worry not... the next step is sorting out who remains in the game and then we will proceed with a new spring, with the following events:

1) Persisting players will gain new manpower for the coming year to bolster their forces -- this will be enhanced or come directly from influence points gained in game.

2) The Attolian/Highborn Expedition to the Muurdaan Capital, as well as the Fennec expedition to make contact with their homeland and House of Narvik will be resolved.

3) once I know who's in and who's out, I may alter the map to reflect the damage done by winter. Depending on who remains, I may accept new players.

Feel free to post how your factions respond to "The killing Lean" -- people who jump back into the game will do much to give it the momentum it needs to start cracking again.

Then we will begin with spring, Year 2 -- the final year before the CULL arrives next spring!!! Four seasons remain to prepare to face the biggest baddies!


PS -- Players still interested, please PM each other and help spread the news of this post. Help me see who's staying and who's not. @Bobisdead123 and @Heyitsjiwon -- I ask you personally to be envoys to each current faction in the game and check in with them. Help me bring everyone back together -- and anyone else still interested PM or post so I know you're in.


-Beck <3

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ゆうじん A
The gnolls' warning of a cold, bitter winter was closely heeded, at least by the Attolians. Even though the Attolians were accomplished mountaineers, the sight of the encroaching cold was something to behold. With not much time, there was much to do as always. It was clear that the gnolls had many raw materials and food to trade. Thus, making the best out of the situation, the Attolians did their best to trade finished goods such as light weapons and armor, and iron tools in exchange for fur, food, and wood to stockpile for the winter.

However, a fuel source would be crucial. Caelis directed Nicholas and Cassandra to take inspiration from the Highborn and their designs for their hot springs. However, instead of making hot springs, Caelis sought to create devices that use the fire crystals that the Attolian began to create in mass and combine it with the bramble gems to create lamps that also generate heat. These would, in effect, be portable bonfires. Caelis also went to the Exiles, his allies, and asked them for their help in mining/stockpiling coal and housing those less fortunate in their winter-proofed homes that the Attolians made for them.

Then... the winter truly came. It wasn't long before the Ratkin abandoned their homes and came to the port to leave. It was a solemn event as they huddled close together in a herd and slowly marched, crunching the frozen ground. As they left, Caelis sought to buy their livestock, seeds, and tools from them. The Colony needed all the supplies and help that they could get after all.

As for communications and transporting supplies during the storm, Caelis commissioned the dwarf cartographer to see if he could find the Ratkin tunnels to help facilitate movement underground. The stone constructs would do most of the work in the cold, but Caelis knew that the Sirens were comfortable in the cold depths of the oceans. They would be entrusted with shorter tasks. Plus, perhaps their voices could help in echo-locating these caverns and tunnels.

Caelis found himself walking around the sewers and visiting garden after garden. With him, he carried a kettle filled with tea as he, Dr. Flemming, and the Dwarven Physician went around to give out tea and see how the people were faring. It was meant to help keep people warm and healthy, but also get a pulse as to how the people were doing as they made small talk. They needed to worry about mental health as well after all which was as important as physical health. He approached a siren, Peisinoe, she was instrumental in getting the Nereid vault open and was a sort of de facto representative of the Sirens. She was humming a sort of tune that gently filled the garden and seemed to make the room just a bit warmer, which abruptly ended when Caelis approached. He filled a cup with tea and offered it to the Siren. "How are you faring? Lady Peisinoe."

The Siren gingerly took the tea and gently blew on it. The Sirens found the cold more favorable, and seemed uncomfortable with heat. But this winter was admittedly even concerning to the Sirens as well. "My sisters and I fare well. Thank you for your concern. We are only making short trips and are not too exposed to the bitter, dry winter air. But the snow is becoming increasingly cumbersome to handle and wad through..." Caelis nodded and mentioned. "Among the treasure that we have found in these lands, there is one particular artifact that may be of great help. It is a floating, flaming vessel that the Mud Elves seemed to use to transport items and weapons with ease. That may help ease your burdens. You have my blessings to use it in your expeditions." The Lady gave a slight bow with her head and replied "That would be very helpful, Lord Caelis." With that, Caelis continued to visit the others.

Caelis and Doctor Flemming generously distributed tea among the colonists at the platz. The Attolians opened their homes for whoever needed it such as the Kobolds, the Hillfolk, and even the Elves though they seemed to have vanished. They needed to stay warm and healthy somehow despite limited amounts of food and warmth. The sound of singing and laughing filled the sewers. Many came to the greenhouses for warmth and to socialize. It was odd how these ancient sewers have become a center for the platz if someone really thought about it. Not too long ago, they were a great mystery, but now they had met new but strange friends who were delivering small shipments of coal. However, if one listened carefully, then they would hear the sound of metal clanking and echoing from one of the sewers. The soldiers were patrolling the sewers to maintain the peace and exploring the numerous routes that had not been explored. They were also sent to check out the aftermath of the Aymaran and Victorian bloodbath and try to figure out what had exactly occurred. Travesty awaited around every corner. They had to stay cautious.



1. Use the new trading with the gnolls for furs, food, and wood to stockpile for the winter in exchange for finished goods such as light armor and weapons and tools.
Castellan, Linguist, 10 Skilled Workers, 5 Sirens, 10 Halberdiers, various goods, 1 wealth

2. Combining the Perpetual Lights with the Fire Crystals to make portable heat/light source (a pretty handy survival item/tool if you ask me).
Nicholas, Cassandra, 10 Skilled Workers, 10 Skilled Dwarf Workers, Dwarven Engineer, Dwarven Crafter, Attolian Engineer

3. Massive operation to collect, prepare, process and store supplies before the storm really hits. (Things like make clothes, gather fuel, make pemmican, etc)
Preserver, Chemist, Learner's Square Construction team + Exiles, 104 Unskilled Workers, 30 Skilled Workers, 20 Sirens

4. Find the Ratkins tunnels and create a viable supply route throughout the colony.
Dwarven Cartographer, Geologist, Architect, 3 Stone Constructs, 20 Sirens, 10 Skilled Dwarf Workers, Bloodhound Hunting Dog, 2 Heavy Armored Dwarf Soldiers, Flaming Symbol, Clockwork Soldier

5. Try to broker a trade deal with the departing factions for their livestock, seeds, tools and other useful items. (PM?)

6. The soldiers are sent out to patrol and explore the sewers, hopefully, with the help of the Zembani. If possible, then they are to check out what happened to the Aymaran and the Victorians.
2 Sundered Kings, 22 Halberdiers, 3 Elite Dwarf Soldiers, 3 Dwarven Soldiers

7. Open reserves and hand out tea to people as a means of maintaining morale and health. See how people are faring and try to stop illness. Hearts and Minds!
Caelis, Dr. Flemming, Dwarven Physician, Tea
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As the ice rushed forward to the colony the Firebeards slammed their doors shut. They would not keep them like this for long but the initial assault of frozen water had to be kept back, lest too much seep in and refreeze in small crevasses and cause damage to the entire hold. Once the initial onslaught settled down into the constant icy hell that lay above Grimdr let it be known that the two most important concerns were that of food and warmth for the colony. They opened the great doors twice everyday, once to let an expedition out with that supplies of food and fuel they could muster and then once more to let them back in, sometimes with some poor soul who had ventured out into the snow in search of supplies alone. While the recent harvests of fungus were not enough to feed the colony, or even provide enough to satisfy the ravenous appetites of the Firebeards, they agreed to ration what they could and spare as much as possible for the colony. Those not focused on going out to help their neighbours or ensure the continuing harvest of Frangus Fungus were sent about the hold tapping on walls and building small branch mines with the soul purpose of finding coal. While the dwarves were able to survive with their communal sleeping set up being kept warmed by their supplies and rations being kept enough to keep everyone alive, with the expeditions being given more to keep their energy up, they knew that many in the colony were struggling.

Despite all this some days were too dear to set foot outside and some areas were too frozen of unstable to delve into. They prayed to Dracos to provide them with warmth and periodically travelled down to the beach to provide their exile brothers with food and to thank Dracos for providing them with enough supplies to look beyond their own welfare. Grimdr asked that every expidition inform him and that everyone would listen to the plight of their fellow colonist so that they could have that if they went on expedition and try their best to keep the colony leaders up to date on the colony's situation as well as allow the Firebeards to see where their help was most needed. Despite all this, layered in the warmest clothes the Dwarves had and using shovels and shields to fight their way through the snow they struggled and would sometimes return to the hold ill and be unable to help with efforts for awhile due to the biting cold attacking their health as well as their supplies.

They had made their position clear and after the early expeditions had returned with lost souls and informed people that there was room in the hold for those in need. As a result sometimes expeditions would return with entire families who could see the writing on the walls and knew that their home would soon be subsumed in snow and ice. As the snow mounted the Dwarvern expeditions went from forcing their way across the top of the snow to creating their own tunnels below it, eventually returning above the snow further down from the cliffs only to be dragged back down as they once again moved away from the colony settlements, efforts had to be made to clear these tunnels and much of the water was taken and disposed off deep in the new cave that the fishers once lived in. The small windows that once lined the staircase's descent were all bricked in and plans being made for a way they could be reopened but then periodically sealed in times of tragedy, such as this extreme winter.

The Firebeards were still undecided as to weather or not they should risk the Rhunk and the Wind-Maggots in aiding the colony. For now they had been kept safe deep below and attempts were focused on breeding them, however due to rationing and the dire situation outside many fear that having Wind-Maggots go out to complete tasks would lead to them being underfed and the same would be true of the Rhunk were to go out, however the value in having them clear paths through the snow for people to use is not lost, especially as it wouldn't be too difficult to fashion a plow with the current number of shields their Firebeards have to hand. But they would not be able to forgive themselves if they let the their beasts die, their hope to create a new home for their kind could be lost forever with these beasts that were so ingrained in their lives before they had to flee.

1. Food will be rationed so that surplus can be given to the colony
2. The doors will be closed and only open twice a day to allow an expedition to leave and return
3. What little fuel supplies that can be spared are being given to the colony
4. All dwarves not involved in food sourcing or expeditions are to try and find fuel, primarily coal veins
5. The Hold is open for people to come and seek refuge to survive the winter
6. Debate is being had among the Dwarves as to the best use of their subterranean creatures.


ゆうじん A
Prior to hearing of the Killing Lean, the Attolians had passed legislation and the Colony had dealt with the Mother Fisher. With a new found peace, Caelis put into action several plans. First, the contract with the Dwarves were ending soon with the end of Winter. They had an unparalleled knowledge of engineering that was envied by the Attolians. Of note was their steam powered ship. The Attolians sought help to develop their own version. He didn't expect a grand invention that would rival the Dwarves. He simply wanted to get the foundations to be able to continue to develop their own as time progressed. The Colony had to learn how to be self-sufficient and this would help immensely by reducing the amount of manpower needed for some of the more mundane tasks. Thus, the Attolian Engineer and several assistants found themselves working with the dwarves to learn and make their own domestic steam engines that could serve as the foundation for the Colony's industrialization.

Another important task was the clearing of the Mud Elf settlement. If left alone, then gods knew how haunted and hallowed it would become. Thus, Caelis sent Cassandra, and some soldiers to fully purify the settlement with Victorian Holy Water, and then clear it out of anything that could be of note. Worst case, they were given orders to burn everything and were given some barrels of pitch as well. The last thing that they needed was for the forest to be haunted.

Next, Caelis needed to figure out how to make it to the Cull safely and in mass. This was when Nicholas approached him with an idea, magical portal doors. The Colony now had a stable supply of magical energy. However, this idea, which Nicholas first suggested when examining the State House, would use magic to open a temporal door and allow people to travel great distances instantly. Such a venture was, of course, dangerous and difficult. Thus, this project proposal was also brought to the Mages Guild and their assistance was requested.

Caelis also noted the severe lack of ships at the Colony, which was concerning as trade was their lifeline. Thus, he met with some of the Exiles with a naval background and sought to start a shipyard to allow vessels to be repaired and built. Such a building would likely be attractive to the Exiles as fishing was a crucial part of their work and livelihood. In addition, Caelis then began to enforce the Colony's new legislation and began to give orders for soldiers to inspect goods entering and leaving the settlement.

Caelis put to motion a plan to safe keep dangerous relics and artifacts, including the tears. He sought to begin the construction of a museum near the Attolian Temple so that such items could be held and safeguarded by the Colony as a whole and enable the mystery of the New World to be solved with all the pieces in one central location. Thus, the Attolians began their next ambitious projects.

Finally, Caelis also put his plan into action and sent some of the Hatzburk Dwarves that he had hired on a quick trading mission to bring back needed supplies in their steam powered ironclad. With them, he sent some goods and a small fortune as well.


1. The Attolians and the Hatzburk Dwarves work on developing a domestic engine to begin the foundation of industrialization in the Colony.
Engineer, Dwarven Engineer, Gnome Crafter, Gnome Engineer, Geologist, 10 Skilled Workers, 2 Heavily Armored Dwarves

2. Expedition to purify and completely clear out the Mud Elf settlement.
Cassandra, Falconer, 2 Halberdiers, 8 Dwarf Soldiers, 3 Elite Dwarf Soldiers, Holy Water, Pitch

3. Project to make a Portal Door.
Nicholas, Mages Guild, Magical/Artificer's Workshop

4. Building a shipyard to be able to repair and build new ships properly.
Dwarf Engineer, 30 Sirens, Exiles if they help, 15 Skilled Workers, 25 Unskilled Workers

5. Attolian soldiers are now officially enforcing the inspection of all goods entering and leaving the Colony by the entrance to the Depression
Castellan, 1 Sundered King, 10 Halberdiers

6. Building a Museum.
Caelis, Architect, 3 Stone Constructs, Clockwork Soldier, 20 Skilled Dwarf Workers, 25 Unskilled Workers

7. The Hatzburk Ironclad Steam Ship was sent out to trade for supplies and other useful things from the nearest ports.
5 Sirens, 20 Skilled Dwarf Workers, Dwarven Diplomat, 1 Wealth, Spices and other valuable things to trade


Other Continuing Labor Delegations:

Colonial Capital Project
Architect, Castellan, cranes, 50 Freedmen, 40 Kobolds, and all the building materials available, 10 Skilled Workers

Policing/Guard around the Platz and Depression/Port
1 Sundered King, 20 Halberdiers

Trade Mission
Lothar, Shipwright, 10 Unskilled Workers

Kobold Language Study

Various Guild Labor
Last edited:


A Servant of King and Country
The Stoutmen Expedition
Colony of New Harmony

Stoutman Sigil.png
The killing frosts of winter fell heavy on the colony of Stouts in the New World. Those who had called themselves the "First Free Stouts of the World" were now buried in the snow. The Stouts abroad were recalled home, returning with their leader from the west as Reverend Kearney regained governorship of the colony. Only a few days after the beginning of the heaviest snowfall did the road between New Harmony and Learner's Square become impassable, and communication broke down entirely.

For the Stouts, hardship was nothing new, but the Killing Lean truly tested their hardiness and metal. Their low houses were often blanketed in snow, and roof collapses were fairly common. By spring, fully a fourth of the houses had had their roofs caved in, and the Stouts were becoming increasingly crowded into a smaller number of cabins. Stouts rationed their resources as best as they could, taking at first two and then just one meal a day. Having fasted for many weeks already, the Stouts were used to plenty in the wintertime. Instead, they went without their bread oftener than not. The men had scrounged enough furs during the fall to keep hunting parties and fishers in clothing as they braved the cold and collected fuel. The colony was largely at their mercy.

stoutmen funeral.jpg
Despite all the best efforts of the Stouts, ten of their company passed away from exposure or illness, six fell to starvation. Furthermore, six infants starved to death causing much grief to their poor mothers. When the snow thawed and winter passed, the Stouts were only saved by fresh rations coming in from the Home Country, alongside eager-faced pioneers who had come to the New World with freedom on their lips. Instead they saw a desolate wasteland, grieving mothers, and hungry faces. Was this the fabled New World their pastors and elders had spoken of?

Detailed Actions
Unit Count
Draftstouts-18 (2 lost to starvation)
Stalwarts-76 (14 lost to starvation, illness, exposure)
Bulwarks- 28

1. 30 Stalwarts busy themselves removing the snow from the roads both inside the village and out on the road to reestablish communication with the colony.
2. 8 Clergy prepare the bodies of the deceased men and infants for burial and direct 2 draftstouts and 10 stalwarts to begin attempting to dig graves in a portion of the village set aside for a cemetery.
3. 1 Clergyman trudges through the snow to Leaner's Square to reestablish contact with the colony.
4. 8 draftstouts and 10 stalwarts begin removing snow from collapsed structures and repairing roofs.
5. The rest of the stalwarts, draftstouts, and bulwarks busy themselves with offloading rations at the docks and carrying them back to New Harmony as well as purchasing what little provisions they can in town.



World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC
(Luthien's Lament)

Attolian response to winter:

The attolians find the ratkin tunnels in only six places – and only in one place was the path viable. One road that lead from the sewers in the attolian housing district and after impossible winding it came up under city hall. The other tunnels contained "paths" that were little wider than a ratkins head – it was well known a ratkin could slip through any crevice they could fit their head through – but to the attolians the tunnels such as these were useless.

Funny though... more than once they thought they caught traces of the fennec using the tunnels as well... and they wondered if the fennec had better luck in the tunnels they found.

Continued echo-location might yield better results, as the sirens learned the craft of finding voids in stone... time would tell. One thing was certain – nobody found a single home of a ratkin. Only passages, if they could be called that. The dwarves were confounded by the absence of what the ratkin would call order... they had suspicions for where main tunnels might be or lead, but several tries yielded little fruit.

Attolian exploration of the sewer revealed just how much of a presence the zebani were west of the colony. At first it seemed impossible to find these strange constructs, but if you knew how to look – it wasn't hard to find them at all... the tiniest, the "grav", were sneaky in their own way, but the "Roc" seemed to be posted more frequently the deeper west into the sewers one went. Only once did the Attolians find place where zebani would not let them pass... an older part of the sewer northwest of the Attolian housing district, skirting where the Aymaran once had been. The Great "Roc-Heetbuilt" barred any passage – they gave only a cryptic answer after plied with various quentions. "The beating must continue unabated. Forever. Leave this place. Forever."

Trade with the Gnolls, while it could still occur, eased some of the stress on the Attolians, and the colony at large. It was wealth well spent... and the "mobile bonfires" brought ease where
they could, once they were finally operational. Aid and comfort to other factions likewise flourishes +5 INFLUENCE! (for the new year)

The efforts of the Attolians, powered by their fear of the worst, protected the faction from the deepest hardship. Some succumbed to the cold, but just as many came of age in the bitter winter.. they saw their numbers undiminshed, and their spirits somehow intact.

The search for lost factions seemed only to spawn more mysteries – the lairs of the Aymaran had seemingly and oddly been repaired and refurbished – as if to hide the signs of a great battle once dust and mould could cover the work. An even stranger find was to be had in the Victorian ruins – for in the shattered shell of the fire tear that powered the lighthouse, was found something that strained belief. A tiny ball and chain... the ball much smaller than even a pea, but damned so heavy as to be immovable.

Winters end saw the Attolians supplies and morale pushed to their very limit – but it was a limit that held. (supplies low, morale fair/poor)


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(Andrew's Song – End of Silence)

It was the stouts that suffered among the most grevious, it was said. But it was also the stouts that were first seen in number. All through winter the bravest and most intrepid or foolish attempted communication or trade, but when the stouts arrived, late in the winter – they arrived in force. Before any other factions called an end to winter the stouts claimed it's end. They saw winter's death, and rose to fight it.

'Twas the stouts that opened the road to learners square and city hall, and twas the stouts that took point making thier way to the 'Platz. It was shortly after these avenues of communication were opened that the Tyren opened the roads to the north, and it was the stouts that discovered the hidden snow-tunnels of dwarven construction.

Thier survival largely if not totally alone through winter was an inspiration to the colony (+3 Influence!) – many spirits were lifted after having feared the worst. The stouts began moving and did not slow down – rebuilding thier homes then redoubling in the building with the thaw... they had quite a growing settlement by the time the snows were gone.

One thing was certain – the stouts had seen the worst winter had to offer, and it was a trial that shaped them, made them tougher.(Stouts gain trait, "Cold-Proven")


World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC
(strange young world – hidden citizens)


Sure the fennec merchants were everywhere that winter – but it was the dwarves alone that were seen regularly by all the factions.

Beneath the ice, beneath the snow, they made passage to the Platz, to the docks, and even as far as Harun'Taras. The Tyren had plenty of their own coal from their mine – but there was not a single other faction that did not see the dwarfs as a lifeline... even the highborn traded richly with them for fuel and meagre foodstuffs.

If the stouts inspired the colony, and the attolians had soothed it, (and the fennec provided escape for it) -- it just might have been the dwarves that saved it. (+5 INFLUENCE, public opinion of faction rises across board) The attolian appetite for coal was bottomless, and the heaters of the humans roared through the winter only at the will of dwarven trade and support.

Many lost in the cold were found by the dwarves and given shelter – it was, by all told given shelter, thought that two if not three score colonists would have frozen outside were it not known, were one lost, that the dwarves opened thier doors twice a day – and that if you weren't able to find a dwarf but you needed one, chances were a firebeard was able to find you.

The "Endless Fire" in the temple of dracos was largely due to Firebeard coal donation – and it was upon this fire that the spirit and lives of the exiles were hinged.

The Livestock of the Firebeards could have helped further – but they could not be risked. The Rhunk Mare had.... ahem... POLLENATED itself and six new Rhunk demanded her foetid mephitic milk – they would be full grown by spring.

The wind maggots laid eggs in one of the scattered peices of fisher mother – and by the spring thaw the wind maggots numbered thirty-six as well. Prudence with their animals had paid off, it would seem.

When the stouts finally opened the passes, it was the firebeards that leant the strongest arms to the effort. Many dwarves seldom looked above the ice of their tunnels unless searching for unfortunates or offering aid – so seeing the stouts come out, on their own and in force, forced them to grudgingly grant some respect to the surprising toughness of these humans... some of them at least. Many a beer was had about it, though talk with the stouts was strange. (Stout and dwarf relations improve)
Black, White, and Gold: The Tyren response to winter.

The people of the hills had gone through the motions. Their worker's hands did not go idle, their warriors kept their weapons ready. They had suffered a grave blow from the battle at the riverside. The minotaurs, already few in number had seen more of their own fall, their bodies hacked apart by blood mad hands and their chieftain had fallen into a slumbering battle with whatever reaper looked to claim the lives of the beast folk. Better times of peace had followed since then. New arrivals had brought their own industry to the colony and the old hands that had survived came together in acts of unity and new works. Yet the fire had gone out of many eyes about the hills. As if the community itself waited in gloom for Orm and the other fallen bulls to wake from their bloody rest.

Still, there were those who would not let the town they had striven to make fall to such an ignoble end. The shaman rings circled their hills as only they could. Shul of the third ring, the outermost layer ranged far as he always did. The smaller bull was a regular sight at the learner's square, his lessons carrying on and his smokes of calming spirits helping to ease the tensions that were always so happy to grow in colonial lands. His was a gentle and calming presence to those who saw him. A proof that hope however humble could survive any horror.

Bruul of the second ring, that layer of iron that stood as the last line of defense against the heart of their order and the outside world did as he always did. He roared and grunted, he laughed and brayed. He marched soldiers until they were ragged in the day and downed beers at The Lamb until people feared they'd run out of casks in the evening. Unbowed and unbroken by battle and injury, he stood tall in the hills, dressed in his robes of iron plates. A thing of history and power on two hooves. He was Tyren, and he had reason to be proud.

Uumush of the first ring had changed the most of all his kind since coming to the new world. This hobbled and withered creature had stood more like a scarecrow than a noble leader of a wise old leader of a shaman coven... but he had acted like one which mattered most to those around him. None could deny Uumush's wealth of knowledge or his great power, even if none of them could tell you what that power was. Now this old bull that had for so long been used as a way to frighten the young had found himself a new burst of life thanks to the secrets he'd gleaned from the Elven tomes. His rotting body now restored with the energies of nature. Infection and decay replaced by moss and sweet smelling flowers. Yet if this renewal of his body had strengthened his magical powers it was unseen. The old shaman had withdrawn once again, spending his days travelling between his own lair and Orm's cottage to tend to the ailing chieftain.

Yet they were not the only ones the community had to rally for around. The two leading women of the caravan were there, ready to heal the wounds left by the Horned One. Weome was coming into her own since her time in the triage, seeming to lose some of her tear riddled moods for her distant shaman and focusing on her studies as a healer of the caravan. Then there was Anuc, once called "Beloved by elves" by the immortals that had since left them. Always rushing to prove her bravery and placing herself in danger that infuriated the bulls in her life. But with Orm and her brother, Rahg Cold-Iron rendered comatose there was no one to reprimand her when the snow came.

Snow and ice stormed all around, blanketing the world and forcing the people of the colony to bunker down for dear life. But trade must still flow and in these desperate times the folk of the new world came together bringing food and coal where they could. So of course it was Anuc who pushed herself forward to lead the Tyren and the Elves in their desperate trudge through the snow. The flocks of the caravan had grown in these past seasons, no longer being warn out by the trials of the road (and during the blizzard even being brought into the longhouses to build up even more warmth). During the spring the merchant bulls had sold their share of woolen clothing to those who feared the distant winter and in the face of this lean the shepherds were called to bring their larger flocks' surplus to bear. With blankets and coats in tow and the magic of the elves keeping the plant stores alive longer than other surface plants could the hills were ready to pull their weight in the colony. Sharing vital warmth where they could and though their farms were not the mightiest they at least would not strain the struggling ration stores. All lead by the white pelted she-bull and the herbs and healing teas she clutched tightly to herself in the storms. Small comforts in such deadly weather but a new coat and a hot drink could do a lot to lift the spirits of those that found them.

Then help came from an unexpected place. The saber ent, Whipporwill who had been brought over by the slavers had been huddled against the Goldenwood Glade for months, slowly recovering from his injuries and chain filled journey. Finally recovered he rose and looked upon the strange hybrid town he found himself in. Elves, humans and minotaurs, all sheltering among strange buildings of stone mixed with tree sung bindings. And these walls! The ancient woods of the home he'd been snatched from and seen cut down lived again... and were mixed with this strange living iron. The stories of this place he'd heard had not mentioned that!

The little springborn rejoiced for his rise and gathered around this symbol of their lost home's strength. As much as these bulls and children had tried they could not create the tree singing masterpieces of the old sages. He could help with that. The ent had seen his share of harsh winters and it was his place to defend the forests of old, now he would defend this new one, nurturing this sapling to whatever strange maturity waited for it. Walking among the gold again the old ent opened his stiff maw and let out his song. A deep, operatic, call that only a throat of vines and sap could make. The magic of the ancient woods heard its silent name called and the stubborn leaves that had refused to fall grew thicker, their branches longer. The iron stems seemed warmer and the glade closed its ranks, its sap glowed and pulsed with warmth, its spores and sapling took hold for the winter before the winds saw them scattered in the new seasons. Little plants of warmth taking their temporary root amid the houses and buildings of Harun'Taras.

"You go forth little ones." The ent's booming yet gentle voice went forth. "Take my song with you. I have felt this soil's story and its works have suffered enough. Take my song with you. I have survived fire and steel and salt. I will not suffer this frost or see good works undone by them."

When he was not tending his "Flock" of trees the ent could be found sitting among the springborn elves or crouched before in the shaman tent in quiet discussion with the iron robed bulls. He had slept long enough and had much to catch up on.

With this new prerogative the springborn went forth, their light feet hardly denting the snow or disturbing the dust in the dwarven tunnels. Their songs helped the topside crops cling to life and made their roots strong enough to survive the the killing frost. It would not bear fruit until later days for some but the Platz farmers would find the soil in their fields in startlingly good condition when the winter passed. The Tyren shepherds were plenty prideful about the warmth added by the manure they could offer but that didn't fit the hopeful narrative of the elves and the smell was a bitter price to pay for warmth. Meanwhile, deep bellow the dwarven works blossomed, with fungai and beer crops getting an even larger boost from the song within their warm holds.

Then the ships arrived.

Minax the merchant and her guard had been more than successful in their mission, bringing more boats than anyone had anticipated! Unfortunately they had not arrived at the best of times.

"Come with us!" The messengers of the boats said. "We of the Proud-Horn Caravan have come to join with you but this place is lost. Look around you, it is a graveyard that does not know it has been filled! Come with us and by the sea we may join and start over afresh."

"Come by the hills." Came their response. "Come by the hills and I'll show you a land where our freedom has been won and our stories are yet to be told." These were the people of Harun'Taras, a place that was founded on the defiant cry that its people would no longer be moved.

It seemed the two were at am impasse. Until one day when Uumush had nodded off by Orm's bedside and a weight on his shoulder roused him awake. The blankets rustled and the old bull felt shock for the first time in years as he looked into Orm's eyes. Awake, alive and bright!

"I did it, Dad. I did it." Orm's voice was quiet and hoarse.

"Yes you did, lad. Yes you did." Uumush's voice came as a quiver and gently he lowered his head, wrapping his arm's over the fallen Orm and pressed his forehead to Orm's.

"What did I miss? The others... are they alright?"

"Rest, there will be time for that." Uumush shushed him, sending out a soothing wave.

"I've rested too long. I saw things 'Mush. I have to-" As always Orm fought hte effect, it was not in his nature to know peace, even when he slept it seemed.

"We will talk of this." Uumush assured him. "There is much to do. But you must regain your strength. Many need to see you."

"Then I need to stand." Orm grunted. A chief that could not stand could not lead. "I can do that much."

Uumush took Orm by the arm and helped him move the blankets aside. For so many years he'd used Orm as his own leaning post. He couldn't remember the role ever being reversed. There was so much to do but for this afternoon at least they were not Chieftain and Shaman. Their family was whole again and they would rise from this winter stronger than before.

Tyren stores are rationed for the winter and surplus is shared with the colony where possible.

Notable shares are expeditions to share woolen supplies to other colony factions. Anuc shares herbal teas and supply store caravans.

The saber ent and tyren warriors wake from their commas.

The goldwood glade uses its magic to help warm Harun'Taras with the help of the ent. The Springborn travel to other colony powers where possible to spread their tree singing to help preserve and nourish the crops of other factions over the winter.

Orm is up and preparing to meet the new colonists.


World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC
...And the Tyren...

The colony was quickly coming together from the bones of winter's encroachment... The fates dared the colony to be rent asunder, to forget the others and focus on standing alone --

...but it was not to be. Like the dwarfs, the attolians, the fennec... the Tyren were not idle in winter. When even the dwarves found themselves short of coal the Tyren had it in great supply to give, and the dwarves would see to it that it was distributed.

Warm clothing and meat came at a price of a small thinning of the herds, who would be fatter and more in number come spring in spite of this. The Tyren brought their own hope as best they could to the colony, and in the most subtle way made a tremendous difference -- The songs of the woodelves and whipporwhil saved the heart of the soil, and the rock-hard ground grew soft again when the sun came to bear. Fertility reigned and rose to greet the labors of the farmer -- The lean season was met with fertility and bumper-crops as the Tyren and their charges performed their rites.

Anuc kept the remote and isolated healers guild as a beacon in the darkness, and cases of sickness and frostharm brought on by the winter was saved by her and her assistants. Life and limb was saved... and above all hope. The firebeards used the healer's guild that Anuc kept running as an island to extend their zone of control...

The proud-horn caravan had to eat crow when they advised the Tyren to flee with them. Now even the great Orm had risen once again -- The elders buzzed and brewed and bubbled with plots. Some symbolic gesture must be made to link the caravans -- the wedding of Esteri the golden was the obvious choice -- though the thought of this brought salt to the eyes of some.

The Tyren ended winter officially by reconnecting the whole community upon clearing the roads north of the learners square -- meeting with the stouts and lending great force to push the winter back. The Tyren stood mighty against the winter. (+4 influence Tyren!)

But not all their neighbors could be saved... the GewGaw Party -- who'd made their homes up on sheercliff, the Tyren came in the bitterest cold to render aid to find them all dead -- drunk on wine and apparently having used the last of their fuel and food for a glorious party where many laid frozen where they fell from the embrace of wine, or drug, or each other. The Tyren set the GewGaws in their pretty costumes to rest in the lake, where the river would take them out to sea. No sense having an open grave towering over Harun'Taras.

The opulence of the Gewgaw left much to be picked clean, as did the lost wealth of the Al-turbansk. Some of this wealth went to market, and other loot wound up in the coffers of those that found it. (+1 wealth Fennec, Attolian, Tyren) Market wealth rises to 11... as a result of salvage and much loose cash being traded for food and clothings.


World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC

Attolian loose ends…


In buried and underground lab – the winter was ignored by tireless dwarves, gnomes and attolian experts. In the time leading up to and during the winter – they put a great center of emphasis on development of a prototype steam-engine to become the basis of a newly industrialized colony – they were successful. The new engine was huge, noisy, and ran dangerously hot, but later iterations promised to be better in every way. For now, the first engine was placed in the last construction of the attolians before the ice took the coasts…

It was an experimental steam-ship modeled after the hulking junk of the Hatzburks. But it was unique in it's own construction… a cigar-shaped vessel made of raw iron and steel, it moved by a means of broadside bladed water-wheels and the expulsion of boiling water that both served to cool the vessel and give it the occasional much needed burst of speed. It's special features made it impressive to see at full speed, but it's normal pace was painfully slow and range extremely short… a heat-resistant crew would be needed to make an extended voyage bearable – and the small craft was packed to the gills supporting a mere 30 crew… still, the attolians were proud of their creation and were eager to see where their new engine models would take them… Wherever that was, it would be a significant investment in wealth to produce more and better model engines.

The expedition to purify the mud elf settlement was a success, more or less – with the burning of the ancient temples, the worm-masses that crawled about the landscape dried up and became a thing seldom if ever seen rather than a near-sessile threat that the stouts built barriers against and hunters and trappers were careful to avoid. Cassandra herself broke the last curses of the Horned one, and at once the lands of the mud elves silenced their whispers of evil, and even the roots of the trees seemed to unfurl and relax, a sickened part of the wood seeking new life and rebirth…

...All except for one last vestige… the Throne of the now-fallen Horned-One. A black rock spire three stories tall, it was completely enveloped by a tremendous constrictor that called itself “the earth serpent” – Strange treasures shone atop the spire but the unblinking serpent would let none approach. The countless dead of the village that died with the horned one bloated the body of the beast, it was stretched so glutted with fallen mud-elves one could make out faces and limbs running beneath the beast's scales. It might be open to parley – but it didn't seem keen to move from the spire….

For the Attolian portal project, other factions mages would have to contribute to the idea of making a portal… rumor has it the highborn have their own strange breed of portal magic, but it would yet to be seen if they would share these secrets… Success would depend on who and how many of the mages guild would lend their hands...

The Starting of a shipyard began to form through colonial cooperation behind the sea-wall, and it was quite promising…. New seasons might see the construction of new ships domestically rather than needing them bought from the old world… if factions had the wealth to make them!

Attolian inspections of coming and going goods was inspired and organized, but it always seemed the smugglers were one step ahead. Misdirection, smoke, mirrors and illusion confounded them at every turn…. But at least it forced those who sought to scoff the law to be at the top of their game...

It was no secret that the colony and all it's factions had found dangerous and mysterious items since arriving in the new world – the Attolians desire to build a Museum near the temple of the Pantheon was an offered answer to the problem posed by this – many magic items with potential languished in dusty treasure stores, and often the people who would need or use such items were not the ones that held them. The museum was an idea that special loot of the colony belonged in part to everyone, and all leaders would have access to items that might serve a purpose to one where it would only be a curiosity to another. The museum would not be complete until summer – but it's bones of wood and stone laid bare throughout the winter in promise….

Kobold language study began to bear fruit… the first scrutable conversations between man and Kobold took place during the winter… it seemed with little understanding of it, many kobolds had adopted the stoumen faith simply for virtue of it being hated by the Muurdaan. A more interesting discovery is that one of the Kobolds (speaking with a confusing accent) – was a speaker of Draconic – and once the communication barrier was breached began to teach this language to the Linguist as well. “Ty-tau Ty-tau”, the Kobold was named, became an almost annoying and ever-present ally underfoot the linguist and other experts among the attolians.

On top of all of this, if factions continued much work at all, the capital building would soon be completed. A celebration would definitely be in order then!
Tell the World I'm Coming Home

Caelis' boots crunched the white blanket that covered pavement of the Platz. The Ratkin were departing on their ship, presumably back to the Old World. They were proud and excited for their new found freedoms in these lands, but the horrors of these lands perhaps proved too much for the Blue Paw Clan. This bitter winter was soul crushing for all. This was the last straw for the Ratkin. Still, they had proved themselves to be close friends and allies. He would at least see them go, but after a word. He approached the Ratkin, who hurdled together for warmth on the beach. They turned to him. Behind him, followed a few carts. Caelis spoke "It is a sad day to see the Ratkin here." He then turned to Milkweed and said "As we agreed, here are the light weapons and armor and the money." The Attolians and Ratkin had made a deal to trade for their crop seeds and their potion of supreme healing. However, Caelis had more in plan. He lifted the cover of one of the carts and there was a pile of iron and steel light weapons and armor, but one of the weapons was clearly strange. A large ivory dagger for an Attolian, but a sword for a Ratkin. Caelis lifted the pristine, white, ivory blade and walked to Milkweed. The blade seemed to be near invisible with the snowy backdrop.

He then said "Many say that I am the defender of the Colony, uniting the factions to fight against the Mud Elves and other threats. However, I shall not let valor go unrecognized. I might be the one to lead the army into a war, but it was you, the Ratkin, who ended the war. It is you who went to save those stranded on the island. It is you who slew a god. You are true warriors. You are the Guardians of this Colony" He then presented the ivory dagger, undoubtedly made out of one of the teeth of the Horned One, to Milkweed. "Yet... for all your accomplishments and sacrifices. Here you are. I understand. There are many young pups among you now and their safety is not guaranteed in these lands. Family is important... still, will some of you not stay and continue to fight? Will you not fight for your new found friends? To continue to build these lands into a place for your people?" He then turned to one of his soldiers who held the flag of the colony and handed the flag over to the Ratkin. "The paw on this flag will always remain for these lands are your homes. I hope you will bear this flag with pride, no matter your decision and where your bones may lead."

He then approached the former IOC survivors and said "You all as well. While you may have a past in the Empire, in these lands. You are reborn. You are no longer thralls or indentured servants. No, you are home. I pray that you will return one day... while I am uncertain of your fates if you return to the Old World. The Empire has never looked upon failure fondly. Still, I am sure that my Brother is at the Capital, explaining to the Houses as to what had occurred here. As long as you tell the truth, then I am sure that the best possible outcome will happen." Caelis felt a true sense of fear for the IOC survivors. Gods knew how they would have to try to explain why the expedition failed so spectacularly... and even if they were believed... would the Muurdaan care? It would depend on the patrons and sponsors of the IOC and how arbitrary they were.

Caelis took a few steps back and said "I hope that you will all never forget what had happened here."

The IOC survivors for the most part walked forward with little pause, knowing that Caelis' concerns were likely more than hypothetical. They would test their luck here rather than back in the Old World. Besides they had established careers here. The Engineers were instrumental in developing the Engines. However, there was a long and silent pause from the Ratkin. No one said a word nor moved an inch as they heavily weighed Caelis' words. However, few seemed to be moved. That is until a rotund Ratkin, named Boulder Rabbit, stepped forward. There was chatter among the Ratkin when he finally spoke. It appeared that he was a relatively quiet Ratkin, so everyone heeded his words whenever he spoke. He spoke about how he had heard of a prophesy where the Ratkin, Tyren, and the "Creatures of Snow", a term for the Attolians and their cold, steel armor, would join together to defeat the Cull. Thus, he decided the stay at the Colony to help make sure that prophesy would be fulfilled and that he had a part to play in all of this. With this, a few more Ratkin slowly came forward to join Boulder Rabbit. These few would stay in the Colony and to make sure that "there would always be a nest for the Clan to return to".

Caelis nodded and thanked the volunteers. He indicated that the Ratkin should return to the warren... which they were already planning to do. After all, they had a lot of "wrestling" to do, which Caelis would leave them to do for the most part. By the time summer came, the warrens would start to fill up once again. Thus, the few who decided to stay waited on the beach and watched the Ratkin leave... no... start their long journey, back home.



The Attolian trade with the Ratkin
Light Weapons and Armor + 1 Wealth for Supreme Healing Potion + Crop Seeds

Caelis tries to convince some of the Ratkin and IOC to stay
4 Influence
1 Architect, 4 Engineers, and 5 Thralls (1 Noble Footman) stay from the IOC
1 Dirty Paw, 2 Bucks and 5 Does stay from the Ratkin

The Rest of the Clan depart from the Colony
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World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC
The Attolians convince few to stay:

Boulder Rabbit -- the only Dirty Paw ratkin to stay behind, he feels the vision of the aged dictates that at least one dirty paw stays behind, and he has become fond of wrestling with other races as no ratkin can beat him open handed. He calls the Attolians "Creatures of Snow" (even before the winter) for their wearing of cold steel. He believes there is a prophesy that the Tyren, Ratkin, and Attolians will play a part in defeating the cull -- and so he stays behind thinking he must be a key in that prophesy. 2 bucks and 5 does stay behind -- "So there's a nest here for you to return to".... they intend to breed like crazy. Of the IOC....

the thralls and Schwalaut the Noble footman do not hesitate to state their real fortunes lie with the colony --- they did not survive the winter to be oppressed again. Besides that, The Architect, and four engineers (the assistant being promoted after great service with the steam engines) agree to stay because of the excitement and attachment to the machines they helped make.
What is Love?

Tomaz and Jav stood by one of the fireplaces in an underground garden, warming their hands and bodies after a long march through the sewers. They were tired, cold, and pretty hungry. Food supplies ran pretty low and there wasn't much variety. Many just ended up eating to not starve as there wasn't enough ingredients to make lavish meals. Their breakfast was a simple bread and spiced capy jerky with some warm tea to wash it all down. This was the situation for most of the people in the Attolian Housing District. They just ate to live, not for taste. Still, they did their best to make do with the situation. A few kids were in the sewers were reading a fairy tale, written by the resident Linguist. Those who served in the Attolian military knew that the fairy tale was based off of Lord Lothar... that particular book contained details about how he had negotiated his way through a dwarven stronghold filled with Ogres, freed goblin slaves and a tributary tribe of orcs, and managed to make a deal that allowed his family to profit handsomely. Of course, it sounded like a fairy tale, but most informed Attolians knew that the story wasn't far from the truth. It would be more appropriate to call it a history book.

Regardless, the kids would learn eventually. Maybe once the school opened up again. But that wasn't their job this time around. This time, they were patrolling the sewers, which wasn't too bad. The sewers retained heat pretty well, so it was a decent place to be considering what was going on above ground. The two simply continued to people watch. There in the corner was Nicholas, who was messing with some sort of device that the dwarves and engineers made lately. In fact, when he found out that he wasn't a part of the project, he was reportedly dismissing his work on the magical portal, and simply stating that he needed more help from mages... then went to go watch the dwarves and their work. Then when they were done, he took one of their prototypes and took it to his workshop where he wasn't seen for a while. In fact, Jav and Tomaz had to be sent to go get him as the nobles seemed worried that he would willingly stay in his workshop alone in this brutal storm just to continue studying and working if no one had went to go get him.

The two stared daggers at him initially, and then sighed. No one could really understand what was going through Nicholas' mind. He was... different. That was the best way to put it. Then, from the sewer entrance next to them, a certain female noble adventurer came out, slightly wobbling, with a glass of ale. She took a good look around this garden with a sour look, but suddenly smiled and brightened up like a sunflower the moment she saw Nicholas. The two coldly glared at Nicholas once again. She slowly made her way to Nicholas with some cautious steps, and sat down right next to him... perhaps it was better to say practically hugging his arm. "That lucky fool." Tomaz muttered. They watched as Lady Helysoune tried to chat up Nicholas, only for him to give terse one or two word answers while barely lifting his eyes from the device. Little by little, they watched as Lady Helysoune's confidence slowly drain... she would need a few more drinks after this.

"That poor fool." Jav said as Lady Helysoune seemed to give up and just tended to her glass. She resigned herself to watch Nicholas work on the device with minimal interest. The two looked away and shook their heads. These were strange lands. Fallen gods, powerful magical artifacts and spells, world ending weapons, but the greatest mystery was perhaps what was going through the heads of Lady Helysoune and Nicholas. It was a mystery that would be never be solved as they went off to patrol the sewers once again to explore the region.


World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC
Tyren Immigrants arrive!

All told, the proud-horn caravan more than doubled the population of the Tyren in Harun'Taras.

Stronger and more prestigious, the proud-horns supported four times as many warriors as Orm's clan previously had, on the order of skilled and unskilled workers they were about the same. Long ago an ancient debt between the caravans formed when the proud-horn, in a marriage arrangement, gave Orm's tribe the first of their animals for their herds – a debt that could never truly be repaid, or so it was thought.

In the old world, the proud-horn tribe had since lost their own herdsAND their own Chieftain falling on the beginning of hard times and increasing encroachment of humans upon their grazing and trading routes– it was then that emissaries bearing news of Harun'Taras and Orm's caravan's newfound wealth and freedom was discovered.

With a wave of hands and a display of these riches, Orm's emissaries canceled all of the proud-horns real and supposed debts and bought them new herds of animals as was done for their own tribe in the olden times – the debt had been repaid, the circumstances had run full circle.

The terms of the unpayable debt were that if Orm's Tribe could pay back the proud-horn clan with time's interest there would be a second marriage, and a true merger of the caravans. It was upon learning how far they would have to travel that the proud-horn learned how incredible this destiny promised to be.

The proud horn clan was known for its numerous warriors, but even more so for the lovely Tyren maiden Esteri – the Golden fleeced. So beautiful was she that no Tyren in rut could resist breaking himself for her slightest attentions, an objectively beautiful creature and a paragon of beauty for her race.

“Gold for Gold” the elders of the proud-horn clan chuffed. “Esteri will marry Orm and the circle shall be complete.”

Orm was out of a coma for barely a sundown before he was visited with lady troubles, the kind that all of his contemporaries would fight to have…

Though much of the proud-horn clan had come to the new world, they left a fragment of their caravan behind to spread the word of Harun'Taras, and the miraculous solvency of the proud-horn with the newfound riches of Harun'Taras.

With the caravans merged, The Tyren numbered thusly:

31 Skilled workers, twice what was before,
30 Tyren Fighters, now that their wounded took foot by spring,
70 unskilled Tyren – a truly massive assembly of herders and tradesbulls!

And with them came three new shaman and two especially famed Tyren – BLOOD TOUCHED – Berserkers like Orm, though he struggled not to be.

At first in winter's chill the proudhoofs thought Harun'Taras a pipedream… more the madness of a rambling Shul than truly an infant Tyren nation – but under the spring sun, with the caravans assembled – the Tyren could feel the ground shake with the weight of their movements. There was power in the earth, in the air, in the HERD… and the Tyren would no longer have to travel endlessly to make their way. Quick came the day that the proudhorns shared the vision of Harun'Taras, and every Tyren took on it's wonder in their own way – some brayed and bellowed to the gods of earth and sky, some folded their arms in quiet prayer of a dream finding realization, and others laughed and embraced as they had never done before!

The days to come would bring more immigrants from across the sea, but the arrival of the proudhorn Tyren whispered of what was surely to come – the population of this nearly shattered colony was about to explode.

With no Chieftain, Orm's invitation was seen as practically prophesy… at least this is what their current leader had said – The Shaman Sinana Heavywalker. Sinana was known as a "Shaper" -- she being a master of rock magic and a converter of rock into mud and back again as a key aspect of her talent. She is said to have turned enemies to stone as well, then moulded them into hideous and pitiable creatures. Such was the fate of they that slew the Proudhorn Chief, it was said – Though Sinana was stoic about her ordeals, both those of the recent past, the ocean voyage, and the strange crossroads she had led her people to.

By her side was her second in command, the Shaman and Skinchanter Nootri. Sometimes called honor-hide, he inscribes oaths and promises on his skin with special tattoos, which he wills into existence as enchantments. He gave magical ink to the people of his tribe to ward off evil and misfortune, and enable them to succeed where the fates might cross them.

Under him, was the Shaman Emme – the Fistleader – she is a wielder of passion magic that literally enslaves the wills of fellow tyren. Making their wills or morale unbreakable, honing hatred, and with great difficulty, halt the seizure of the blood touched. Her magic has the opposite effect on other beings -- mostly causing fear and doubt. The third circle of their caravan was always a passion-shaman – and was one of the reasons the caravan was called the proud-horn.

With them they brought the blood touched Granrapak Brighteye – an adventurer made famous serving with “Unferth's Dungeon Clearing Company” – it was said he could crush regional threats left to his own devices. Beside him walked the likewise bloodtouched Krummaruk Keenhunter – A hunter of men, of monsters, of Tyren… he was a tower and a half with horns raised high, and a walking pillar of hatred for it was said all but his own kind.

Accompanying the newly arrived Tyren were ten new warriors of the “Faith of the Rich” Pension Legion. They greeted each other upon first sight with textbook gallows warmth, and a quick exchange of tales.

“Welcome to Harun'Taras, of the New World Colony – we have killer winters and runaway gods to slay. Enjoy your stay. Where you coming from?”

“We come from the wars in Sinnis!” The newcomers said replied.

“I thought we'd seen the last of Sinnis, so long has the company fought there, I'd begun to think they'd plan to kill you all by natural causes!”

“WE HAVE seen the last of sinnis! Bec-di-corbin ran through the sons of the rogue king himself, ask him over an ale – he'll show you a necklace of their ears!”

And they laughed the laugh of the living condemned.

Behind them all was a train of two dozen some wood elves… most of them obviously springborn like those who already lived in Harun'Taras, but a few had a faraway look, a certain aura, that spoke of deeper age and wisdom.

None so aged and wise as the gorgeous Deryn Falhath – scantily clad, she wore the veil of a crone on an otherwise ageless nubile frame. She was covered in bright red scars that seemed only to enhance her beauty somehow – the arcs and patterns of what must have been near-mortal wounds winding around her lithe frame. She had heard of the elves of Harun'Taras, and their ancient Ent transplanted – and sought to bring what remained of her followers here, as they had no place else to go… “The day I arrive, Orm will rise.” She was reported to have said – it was not known even that Orm had fallen… but rise he did on her arrival.

She levitated up to Orm's ear and lay a gentle kiss on his ear upon first meeting him.

“You've been having nightmares...” She whispered.

Orm knew that was true.

But to see the assembled host before him -- his nightmares were banished -- he had been but a calf when he had seen more Tyren than this all in one place. He had inherited a tribe that he lead with uncertainty -- but this -- this was a NATION, if not a nation within a nation. Orm could have wept.
The Highborn had prepared for the coming Winter since arriving, and the winter was fierce indeed. The cold was bitter. The winds howled and the snows came. As the snows piled deep, the Highborn made blocks of ice using basic physics, Highborn High Magic and Highborn engineering to encase their quarter in ice to use as a buffer against the elements and for insulation. The Highborn called upon their millenniums of experience in harsh weather and abilities in High magic, Angelic powers to make themselves not just survive but to live in comfort. The Highborn used the snow and ice to their advantage using the ice as building materials to create a home under the blankets of snow. The Highborn Engineer working along with the Arch Mage tirelessly with all the Highborn including the Prince to make an exqusite subtranean ice town in the Highborn quarter for the Highborn themselves and a more rustic, safe, ice refuge for those in the colony that needed it towards the Attolian quarter. The Highborn quarter itself was flooded with High magic making it only tolerable to fellow High Magic using Elves, magic wielders and perhaps fellow immortals not tainted with impurities. The Highborn asked for the Arch Angel's angelic light and protection. The Highborn built some larger barracks typed ice structures that were made to house mortals who sought shelter. The Highborn extended an invitation to the Stubborn Victorians, but the Victorians chose differently and perished. All the domiciles and open spaces were heated using the Ceramic heaters the Highborn made, Highborn anthracite coal, and a mixture of High magic and mana crystals. The combination of Highborn technology and High magic kept the cold and elements at bay. The inside of the Ice Palace as it was dubbed was intricate, full of art made from ice.
Ice sculpting became not just a necessity but also an artistic pastime of the Highborn on those cold days. The Highborn clothing made from Tyren wool was exceptionally warm, as were the blankets the Highborn had and distributed to those in need.

The Highborn had much food stockpiled and rationed food out to make it last. The Highborn had made sure to put aside additional food for fellow colonist and distributed food to those in the Platz that needed it. The Highborn ice shelters designed for mortals became somewhat crowded, but not oppressive. They provided ample shelter to many colonist who would freeze otherwise. Highborn discipline combined with High magic infused foods sustained the Highborn and their guests through the winter. It was still not easy on those not accustomed to such cold to venture out, but some did, the Highborn used skis, and snow shoes to travel when the weather permitted. Inside the Ice Palace, the Highborn meditated, studied, practiced magic, and trained in military arts. The artisans did their bests to continue crafting materials, and those who had occupations and were guilds did their best to continue their crafts. Most efforts were spent in keeping warm and fed. The Highborn linked up with the Dwarves when needed, used the Long dead to send supplies, and prepared for the spring. Artificial magical light was used to germinate seeds to plant once the ice receded. The Winter Greenhouses were kept free of snow when possible when (if) the skies opened up.

The Highborn traded with the rest of the Colony as needed and stayed in touch with the Colonial government as much as possible to see to the needs and defense of the Colony. The Highborn trained vigorously to stay mentally and physically fit. The Highborn also trained fellow colonist that wanted to move around to keep warm.

The Prince begins to research the idea of using the portal to destroy the cull. He asks the Arch Angel how this may be done, and asks his Lore Master to help find a way to use the way to send the cull into it.

Life in the Ice Palace. On a typical day the Highborn spend their days meditating, working and training. Light shone through some of the more transparent ice windows. The light was bluish. The air was cold, but tolerable. One could or stand by a heater of cold, but the warm High Elven Tyren wool garments were comfortable and warm. The isolation led to some boredom. The food rations were not enough to make one feel stuffed, but no one was hungry. The Highborn Artificer worked on ideas for constructs. This was something she was tinkering with for some time. The Spy looked at intelligence reports and gave reports to the Prince and other commanders regarding the power shifts occurring with the factions dying off and leaving. Ultimately, this would weaken the colony. The Highborn did not feel and any strong affinity towards the GEW GAH, the Rat kin, Al Turbanask, the Amaryan, or the Victorian. The Amaryans proved to be very useful in combat. The GEW GAH might have thrown a nice party, the Victorians rigidity was even off putting to the Highborn and the Rat Kin had proved valuable in the Island mission, but were ultimately vermin. Nonetheless, these factions helped bolster the manpower of the Colony and the winter took them out.

Fortunately, the Highborn were awaiting more of their own kind. This second wave was just the beginning. However, before the Highborn could truly make this a home, they first must contend with the cull.

1) Among the Highborn goals for the Spring was to contribute building the Ship Yard they had suggested to the Colonial government. It was important for the Highborn to build ships that would fit their high standards. The Attolians and Highborn had discussed this for sometime. 20 Unskilled, 10 skilled. Engineer.

2) The Spider silk business was to get off the ground. This was an endeavor mainly with the Fennec, but other Colonial factions were to benefit. 10 unskilled,5 skilled plus Tamer and Cyclops.

3) The Highborn prepare the expansion of their quarter for the new arrivals into the Theater district. 20 skilled, 5 unskilled.

4) the Highborn will germinate seeds preparing for early spring planting. The Greenhouses will be kept clear of snow, or magical light used for the crops. 20 unskilled and five skilled.

5) Spy Master gathers information with team of Countrymen and ten Elites to explore the Fate of other factions, and sends salvage crew to Victorians looking for magical items, armor, treasure and weapons. Is Lighthouse intact?

6) the Prince asked the Arch Angel about using a portal to send the cull into the Way.

(note: There may be more that I need to do and add, and this might be light in terms of literary exposition, but I wanted to get a post up)

The Star and the Sword - the Arrival of Attolian Reinforcements

The snow finally began to thaw and life slowly returned to the Colony. First came the ship filled with more Tyren. Needless to say, their settlement was burgeoning with new life and excitement. It appeared that many new arrivals were due, and it was just in time as well. The winter was harsh, but that just meant there was more work to be done. The snow and ice was cleared from the streets and buildings of the Attolian Housing District and people silently went to work. Crops had to be replanted, roofs fixed, and the ruins rebuilt. There was much to do and so little time. It was then that a halberdier came running towards Caelis as he watched over the work being done, yelling "Ships spotted, My Lord! They fly the banner of House Wolff!" Caelis jumped to action. He told the halberdier to prepare the men at the port to receive them. Naturally, nearby people were curious about the commotion and began to make their way to the port as well. Caelis would need some time to prepare his armor and mount his steed.

When Caelis arrived, the ships had started to dock. 20 of his halberdiers were assembled as an honor guard on the beach, flying the colors and wearing the unmistakable blue surcoats of Attolia. Many looked a bit skinnier and grizzled than when they first arrived almost a year ago. But, Attolian customs and tradition would never be forgotten even by the most remote outposts of Attolian civilization. Caelis took his position at the end of the honor guard. Soon after, the new arrivals disembarked. First to disembark were 12 Attolian nobles and intellectual elite. These were the foremost experts in their field in the Guilds of Attolia. They had answered the call to service in pursuit of knowledge and discovery. Leading them was Ambassador Talleyrand, a distinguished Attolian diplomat, well versed in the internal and external politics of the Kingdom and the Empire. Receiving such an eminent member of Attolian politics... the United Attolian Guilds were pulling some heavy strings to take part in the New World. Following the Attolians were two Hiver Princes... they were recently "relocated" by the Muurdaan, which rendered an entire generation of errant princes with no Queen or hive. It seemed these two now sought purpose and vowed loyalty to Lord Caelis. Given prosperity... perhaps they would be able to start their own hive and germinate a queen with some Royal Jelly. Then, almost unseen in the throng of people, were three gnomes of the Obscure Kitchen. These gnomes were well known for their... ambitious ideas. They were near guaranteed to make a project a huge success.... or fail miserably with their big ideas. Their ideas would have to be tempered and watched carefully, but they were certainly a welcome addition to the Colony especially since the Attolians now sought to industrialize.

Then came the mages. It appeared that they numbered 7 strong of various backgrounds and specialty. 3 of them were University Mages, varied specialties and expertise who were sick of the safety of academia and sought some more adventure. Then there were the Deznan Astrologers, a renowned group of healers and astrologers that utilizes astral and life magic for both medical and violent purposes. The Highborn would find that their magic is very compatible with their own. Finally, there was the Ossuary Templar and one eminent member, Talion the Constructor. The Templars are an order who are well known for creating magnificent pieces of art and even cathedrals out of bone. The Templars wield healing magic, anagathic enchantment (giving a "timeless" quality to items and even extending lifespans). He without a doubt came after hearing of the rumored legions of skeletons that would make for worthy constructions and artistry. They also specialize in the treatment of disease and poisons, and certain sects animate undead for the purposes of free tireless labor. Talion was one such Necromancer. However, rather than use souls to power their spells and undead, Talion was a practitioner of bone magic and animated the bones themselves with magic. He in particular is known for using his spells to help create an abundance of untiring labor for plantations. Thus, rather than undead... it would be more appropriate to call his creations, "bone constructs" rather than the foul black magic that use the very souls of the dead and dying. It could be said that his creations are rather like the Twiceborn, the friendly skeletons who came to existence thanks to magic.

Then right behind them was their escorts and honor guard. With the discipline and experience of decades in the Attolian military, they sang their marching song. A force 81 strong. This was a true regiment that trebled the size of the Attolian military into over 120 strong. Leading the formation was the Order of the Circle. These Knights were an Attolian Knightly Order well known for their specialty in dealing with magical and supernatural threats to the Kingdom, Empire, or the Pantheon. The Circle represented the Pantheon, and it was their duty to make sure that no pretender would try to harm the gods.


Excerpt from an Introduction to Attolian Military History textbook:

A Knightly Order well known for their devotion to the Pantheon. The Order was founded by an Attolian noble long ago and has a long history of eliminating threats of a magical or other worldly nature. The Order in its past used to be largely manned by ex-convicts who had become very resistant to magic due to Muurdaan torture and imprisonment. These men joined the Order on the condition that two decades of service would buy them their freedom and comfort. Needless to say, many did join to escape their Muurdaan jailers. They were then ruthlessly trained by Attolian Knights and were instilled Attolian discipline and order. The training was said to have been so rigorous that several died every week. Then once trained, the newly inducted footmen were sent on dangerous missions while being led by one Knight of the Order. Most died on their first couple of missions. However, the few that survived would often go on to survive, learn and join the Order as proper knights as they clearly possessed some sort of innate ability that had helped them survive such dangerous missions. In exchange, their standing in society would have skyrocketed from a convict to a pious Knight.

The Order is not as ruthless as it once was, but many of the initiates are still received from the Muurdaan prisons. The rest of the members now benefit from runes, blessings, and wards to protect them as the Order had become very wealthy due to their specialty. Some do elect to undergo "resistance training" at their own will, but this training is neither popular nor as effective as the "training" that the prisoners get. Rumor also has it that the Order had discovered some sort of metal that can negate magic as well, and that they had began to include that metal in their alloys to make their equipment. Still, the presence of the Order in an area is never a good sign as it indicates that there is a serious supernatural and/or magical threat to the Kingdom, Empire, or the Pantheon.


Such an Order was a blessing to have in these lands.

Right behind the Knights was a perfectly coordinated regiment of Attolian Swarm Infantry. Instead of what first impressions may give based on their title, these men were the epitome of Attolian drill and discipline. They are some of the more experienced and veteran soldiers of the Attolian Army who are able to maintain a solid frontline and use their superior training, discipline and experience to out maneuver enemies with coordination as if they were a hive mind. They served as a wondrous reserve force and rearguard especially since the Attolians typically used them as anti-missile units with halberdiers supporting them to serve as anti cavalry.


Excerpt from an Introduction to Attolian Military History textbook:

Attolian Swarm Infantry: so called for their tactics of numerical advantage and the speed at which they can move and change formation on the battlefield, swarm infantry pins enemies or mops up foes that flee or demonstrate inferiority, and outmaneuver matching or superior forces on the field. Supported by other units swarm infantry will make sure you have a fight where you want it, with units specializing in anti-missile tactics or anti-cavalry. They do not sell their blood cheaply and will seem to break in extreme circumstances, only to reform later, hopefully with pursuers out of position or tired from chasing them.


Finally, behind the Attolian Elite were the Kriegan Banner Infantry. They are fearsome warriors originating from the East whose lords are vassals of the Attolians. The Kriegan Houses lost their lands in the past, but were invited by the Attolians to settle in Attolia and given land. Since then, the Kriegan Houses used their military skill and prowess as a major source of income and power, often seen sending reinforcements to conflicts of the Kingdom and the Empire. They are also often hired as mercenaries in situations where the Kingdom didn't desire direct conflict.


Excerpt from an Introduction to Attolian Military History textbook:

A blend of central empire and far east styles of warfare, these are basically heavy armored samurai with bows and two-handed swords. Ruthlessly efficient, they communicate to one another on a squad to squad level using back-mounted banners that also make them look proud and resplendent on the battlefield. Numerous houses of Kriegan Banner Infantry exist, and Attolians have counted on them in the past in foreign wars making them exotic units at a domestic price.


The men marched forward before Caelis and stopped before him.

The final count:

2 Hiver Princes
3 Gnomes of the Kitchen
12 United Attolian Guilds
30 Kriegan Banner Infantry
30 Attolian Swarm Infantry
21 Knights of the Circle (One of them being a Spellbreaker mage)
3 University Mages
2 Deznan Astrologers
1 Ossuary Templar

Caelis was elated. These were dangerous lands where military might and special expertise were needed to survive. While the Attolians numbered over 200 already, this massive influx of elite soldiers and specialized knowledge and skills was direly needed. The Attolians would never go down without a fight and fight they will for more than 300 Attolians were now in the Colony.

Ambassador Talleyrand approached and loudly yelled "Hail Lord Wolff!", which was loudly echoed by the soldiers in unison "Hail!"

"Your countrymen send their regards to thee and thy heroic Brother. We are here to serve and aid you in your quest to tame these lands."

Caelis' eyes narrowed slightly. The diplomat was certainly precise with his cherry picked words. Clearly, it served as a reminder of his duty. The Old World seemed so... distant now. But, its shadow loomed over the entire colony. Caelis was certain to never forget.

"Hail my brothers and friends!" Caelis replied "These lands are perilous. False gods, temptation, treachery, and trials await around every corner. However, in the name of the Kingdom, we shall triumph and tame them all! For Kingdom and Country!" The soldiers yelled in unison "Regna aeterna, victrix!" (Eternal Kingdom, Victorious!). The restless spirit of the late Underlord Touryan was perhaps slightly appeased that day as armored human boots landed in mass once again in the New World, but what would those boots do? That was still to be written by fate and history books as boots began to march up the sandy coast once more.


World-Weaver and servant to the most-holy PC
@Prince Vaethorion

Winter, comparatively – was kind to the Highborn.

Locking themselves away many would comment this winter was nothing compared to some of the Winters of the Wind Age, and that harsher winters would yet be seen. Though care needed to be taken, the sacrafice of comfort needed not. To the extent they could they helped the other factions and kept to themselves, furthering goals while others could simply huddle for warmth.

Before winter got too harsh, and quickly at the onset of spring – the Highborn had their shipyard. Competant help from the attolians and the exiles as well as new seaborne mercenaries in service to Attolia gave a surplus of qualified labor to build a shipwright and even get the start on a new Elven vessel. (Highborn gain +1 ship!) more would follow.

The extraction of “spidersilk” thread from the captured cave fishers was surprisingly easy with a cyclops to intimidate and restrain. Techniques were developed, which the fennec rapidly copied.
The fibers produced were incredibly light, but very flammable – additional wealth would have to be combined with silk in order to make reliable armor without this drawback.
(Highborn gain 5 spidersilk, fennec gain 3 spidersilk) – spidersilk can be combined with 1 wealth to make “spidersilk armor”

Even in the face of the cold, the highborn continued renovations in the theater district. Venues were cleared and come the spring thaw, the area was ready for arts and culture with Highborn well situated to profit from it. (Highborn gain +1 influence for theater district improvement, and +3 for help in winter to other factions, totallying +4 influence highborn)

Between the blessings of the earth the Tyren put forth and the ready-to-plant seedlings of the highborn, food production was quickly into full swing. (Tyren and Highborn share dominance of Grocer's Guild!)

Checking upon the victorians the highborn first saw only devastation – the lighthouse had blown up it would seem, the majority of it sailing off the cliff and into the waters below. They did manage to find 2 wealth in the ruins… mostly melted gold and silver but also some neatly stacked ingots in the cold… however there was something else found on another day that beared a mention...


It would seem the Attolians had similar ideas about picking the bones of the victorians, but they had found something else – the ancient armor of Underlord Touryan. The highborn watched from cover as they extracted their prize….

When the thaw came, The highborn said goodbye to their castles of ice, and sighed almost wistfully at the beautiful weather that came in it's stead. (Highborn morale actually improved by winter!)

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