A Summary

The fighter stared at the wall above his desk, in the study of the Vale. Countless sketches, public notices, and reports had been pasted there, and it was beginning to look like the walls of the bank. Yes, he thought, nanasisan was right—there is a lot of information here, enough to give you a headache. Let’s see if we can’t make sense of it all… He picked up a pen and began to write.

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[OOC: Last updated on May 20th, 2020. New or updated entries are colored red. For this update, that includes:
- Peytra Gray
- Petula
- The Infernal Tome ]

Comments

  • edited May 20
    VILLAINOUS GROUPS

    The D.D.D.
    Who are they:
    • The Division of Diabolical Devices
    • Formerly a part of The Black Hand (a now-defunct group which terrorized Oberin for decades), the D.D.D. still operates independently now, under the leadership of Master Rem and Lady Uryste.
    • Beneath them in the hierarchy are three powerful "Lord Enchanters": Fiadoryx, Viri, and Resaana. Each of these three employ a number of mages known as "Artificers". And each Artificer in turn, commands a number of Brigands.
    • The Brigands of the D.D.D. seem to wear color-coded uniforms. Red-robed brigands serve Viri. Black-robed brigands serve Fiadoryx. Gray-robed brigands serve Resaana.

    What are their plans:
    • Originally, the D.D.D. specialized in the study of dangerous, magical artifacts. Now, their experiments seem to have greatly expanded.
    • Thanks to a restored Bloody Note, we know a lot about their current research goals: Fiadoryx studies "the Void and arcane matters" (Which makes it all the more surprising that Fiadoryx chose to disable the portal known as the "Voidgate" - but more on that soon). Viri studies "rings, charms, practical things". And lastly, Resaana studies "the mind, dreams, and astral projection".

    Where are they now:
    • The forces of the D.D.D. have been spotted in and around the Tree Maze lately. With them, now, are the Sand Golems that they learned to control as part of their "Sand Project".
    • Lord Viri's men were recently seen using Dwarven Automata to harvest ferrite in Duldrus.
    • Lord Fiadoryx was involved in a dramatic turn of events at the Voidgate of Foehan, as part of his lengthy search for the missing fragment of the all-powerful Moon Curio. To this end, he acquired a legendary "Golden Fleece", an item which is required to hold the Curio. Then, Lord Fiadoryx revealed an astonishing discovery: the missing Curio fragment had been a part of the Voidgate's structure all this time, acting as the Voidgate's power source. Using the Golden Fleece, Lord Fiadoryx recovered the fragment. But unfortunately for him, it would appear that the Curio fragment had been drained of all its legendary power. Now, Lord Fiadoryx seeks to restore the fragment's powers, though he appears to have no more knowledge on how to do this than the rest of us. In the meantime, the removal of the Curio appears to have completely shut down the Voidgate. What other secrets the Void Realm held, may forever be lost.
    • More recently, a Diabolical Artificer serving Lord Fiadoryx attacked Rellia's Library, in a vain attempt to uncover any knowledge that might help the D.D.D. to re-power the Curio fragment.
    • NEW: Most recently of all, an Infernal Tome containing information on the Curio was discovered. Fiadoryx does not know of the tome's existence. He will surely seek to acquire this Tome, were he to find out about it.

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    The Creed
    Who are they:
    • The Creed of the Jeweled Dagger
    • They are an extremely secret association of rogues and others, formed in Marali.
    • They specialize in the creation of liches and wraiths.
    • Long ago, during the infamous Siege of Marali, one of the members of the Creed assassinated both Commanders of Marali, causing widespread chaos and allowing the Black Hand to take over the city.
    • For decades afterwards, the Creed remained underground. We now know they were hiding in a place known as the Creed's Lair, the recently discovered complex that lies below Skull Island Dungeon.
    • Also, some of their members infiltrated the various cities for years, sowing the seeds of strife from various positions of power, most famously Estess Vorund of Marali.
    • The only other members we know about: Moira Anasima (a wizard), Captain Isouran (a fighter), and someone with the initials "D.L."
    • They seem to employ a vicious band of black-plated mercenaries who are, for unknown reasons, fiercely loyal to the organization.

    What are their plans:
    • They seem to be interested in the confusing labyrinth of caves discovered in the Atoll Volcano. But what are they really after? Read on...
    • A pair of talkative bracken at the Atoll Temple revealed that the place beneath the Atoll Volcano is in actuality the Shrine of Elara and Her Disciples. (The guardian of this "Shrine" is another talking bracken that adventures have met before: Phern.) The twin bracken claim that "greedy humans" (the Creed, presumably) are seeking the "power of the Shrine". Additionally, the Bracken say that they await the builders of the Shrine. These "builders" are later revealed to be none other than the Knights of Silver, who we will discuss later on.
    • A valiant wizard named nanasisan (and a dear friend of mine) recently encountered Moira Anasima and a mage named J.J. walking together on the Atoll. This dynamic duo revealed some more about the Shrine, claiming that the "power of life and death, and all things in-between, the united power of the Disciples" is what they were seeking.

    Where are they now:
    • The Creed, more than any other villainous organization, is slippery and secretive. For much of the last year, they were camped out on the beaches of the Atoll Volcano, barring all entrance.
    • However, when a group of daring adventurers invaded their camp, the elements of the Creed were forced flee using a strange temporary portal made of candles.
    • We now know they fled to the Lerilin Volcano, where they enjoyed the hospitality of the man who lives inside that Volcano: JJ.
    • They do continue to be working on something inside the Shrine. In the meantime, the Creed's assassins continue to target mages in hopes of acquiring their skulls, which they hope to use to create more liches and wraiths.
    • Recently, high-ranking Creed agent Estess Vorund escape the infamous Dungeons of Marali, where he had been kept for the last few years. It is presumed that he has returned to The Creed.

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      J.J.
      Who is he:
      • Jeremiah Jalux, AKA the Jealous Jalux
      • Formerly a part of the Black Hand, he is the infamous inventor of two fearsome monstrosities: Hell Mages and Magma Golems.
      • To accomplish this, he built a laboratory in the depths of the Volcano: the Hell Mage Laboratory.
      • He is now known for selling and exporting his creations to other evildoers, including both the Creed and the D.D.D.
      • He employs a large number of former Black Hand brigands. They do not seem to wear any special armor. We know only one of their names: "Sgt. Orik".

      What are his plans:
      • Continue to gather the skulls of mages, which he uses to create Hell Mages.
      • Keep selling his creations to the highest bidder? Or does he have some other end goal in mind?

      Where is he now:
      • JJ continues to reside in the Hell Mage Laboratory.
      • Somewhat recently, he sealed off a portion of the Volcano in order to provide shelter to the elements of the Creed. This seal did not last too long, and adventurers coming to investigate discovered a trap designed to produce more mage skulls for JJ.
      • NEW: JJ was last seen on the Atoll, walking with Moira Anasima of the Creed, with whom he is plotting to harness the legendary power of the Shrine of Elara and her Disciples.

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  • edited May 20
    Hmm. The fighter rubbed his temples, hoping to dispel the aching pains. We better take a look at the cities, too. And maybe some other folks as well. Just in case.

    THE CITIES

    MIRITH
    Persons of Interest:
    • King N'eroth still remains absent, living in the land of the Mhara as an honored guest, with Queen Nifi. Most recently, the two of them sent a gift to Lerilin to pay respects to the late Mayor Palmer, during that village's Festival of Flames.
    • Royal Seer Kherasija has returned to the city.
    • Royal Guard Amere, Lady Cassandra, and Lords Nedved II and Iceane of the Mirith Vanguard are often seen around the city.
    • Bank Manager Z.R. Naut is a frequent sight as well.
    • Lastly, East Gate Guard Captain Jozas has been posting reports at the bank in recent days.

    Current Plans / State of Affairs:
    • The city seems to be running things smoothly while the King is away.
    • Not too long ago, the Vanguard offered their support to the international alliance of guilds which conducted a dramatic research expedition into the Voidgate of Foehan.
    • Now, with the recent explosion of D.D.D. activity around the Tree Maze (a disputed territory between Mirith and Marali), how will the city respond?

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    MARALI
    Persons of Interest:
    Current Plans / State of Affairs:
    • The city is still on the defensive the painful and treacherous infiltration of The Creed. One of the Creed's agents, Estess Vorund, was held as prisoner for the past few years in the infamous Marali Dungeons, before making a daring escape in the Red Moon of Year 452. Agents and assassins of the Creed have since been spotted on multiple occasions, deep in the Marali woods. Most recently, the Creed attempted to assassinate an important figure named Peytra Gray, whose connection to Marali is uncertain. The assassination failed, but left Peytra Gray incapacitated. Marali sent for an old dignitary named Mother Altaira Mei. With Mei's assistance, Peytra Gray was healed, and now the city looks for answers.
    • Of greatest concern: the city is still missing their piece of the Moon Curio, after over a decade. As such, the city is no doubt very concerned with the D.D.D.'s recent efforts to re-power the missing piece. So where do Marali's eyes turn now - toward the Tree Maze, as with Mirith?

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    ANDRIS
    Persons of Interest:
    Current Plans / State of Affairs:
    • The last BMF seemed to run smoothly (ignoring some increased pirate activity), with Senator Janik making her fabulous return at the glamorous Beauty Pageant.
    • Presumably, the city still hopes to find the missing Senator Morgans, who is thought to have gotten lost in the Void. However, the final expedition into the Void failed to turn up any signs of the Senator... and now, with the Voidgate closed indefinitely, is it time for the city to close this painful chapter of its history and move on?

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    LERILIN
    Persons of Interest:
    • Mayoress Marigold
    • Mr. Geofric, her husband
    • Ellis Fawr, Bank Manager
    • Keri, Keeper of the Flames (a traditional/ceremonial role fulfilled during the annual Red Moon rituals)

    Current Plans / State of Affairs:
    • Lerilin has just staged another successful Red Moon Festival with minimal incident.

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    BRIGOBAEN
    Persons of Interest:
    • Theologian Evaristos - head of the Restoration Atelier, restoring damaged books and documents.
    • Father Aldus – an apprentice at the Atelier, Aldus specializes in the language of the Mhara.
    • Mother Emmalisse – a student of diplomacy and foreign affairs, she has been spotted in Mirith a lot recently, occasionally even assisting the guards in the city's defense, such as in the recent kidnapping of the west gate guards by a pack of trolls.

    Current Plans / State of Affairs:
    • The Waking Moon saw Brigobaen's annual efforts for the Dawn of the Disciples pilgrimage, bringing donations to the poor folk of all the various towns and cities.
    • This was followed in the Growing Moon by the relatively quiet Festival of Elara, observed only within the halls of the temple, and with marked solemnity and reverence.
    • The year progresses, and with it, the cyclical nature of life in Brigobaen.

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  • edited May 21
    MISCELLANEOUS

    THE SOUTHWEST SAILORS
    • Sometimes abbreviated to S.W.S.
    • A shipping company that rose to prominence in recent years.
    • Recently, they built what appears to be a well-defended headquarters in Port Gast.
    • They seem to employ a private guardforce, who can be identified by their black robes.
    • The company's treasurer, Ashley, has been trading away Silver Buttons recently - an item that long ago held significance to the D.D.D.

    SAILOR JAMES
    • AKA Venomous James. Leader of a pirate crew.
    • He coordinated a number of daring raids on Andris during the latest BMF.
    • His crew was tracked to their sizable fortress on an island in the southwestern archipelago - now called "James Island" – and they were soundly defeated.
    • The fate of James remains unclear.

    ISTRA FALVO
    • A wandering forest witch with a knack for making powerful elixirs and magical soups.
    • She is also a close personal friend of King N'eroth.
    • Not too long ago, she assisted Marali Commander McTyr in capturing a traitorous agent of the Creed, Estess Vorund.
    • Most recently, Istra was seen at the Vale, hunting down a different forest witch in an attempt to learn more arcane powers. The witch's name? Sopor.[/color]

    SOPOR
    • A menacing forest witch whose arcane magic puts her victims to sleep... permanently.
    • First seen a few moons ago at the Voidgate, Sopor was most recently spotted at the Vale, where she mistakenly identified one of that guild's members as Istra Falvo.

    PETULA
    • A fighter who commanded a sizable force of brigands for the D.D.D., underneath Lord Fiadoryx.
    • Petula had a romantic connection with Lord Fiadoryx of the D.D.D. – but things soon soured, and Petula soon became overcome with jealousy and rage.
    • Petula attacked the Hidden Vale to demonstrate her allegiance to Lord Fiadoryx, hoping that the attack would keep that guild out of the D.D.D.'s business. (Editor's note: It Did Not.) The attacks continued to escalate in frequency and magnitude. In one such attack, Petula's brother, Loyt was killed. In this battle, the Vale recovered an Infernal Tome.
    • NEW: Lord Fiadoryx approached the Vale in secret, offering them information on when Petula would attack next - and all Fiadoryx asked in exchange was that the Vale kill Petula. Petula's attack thus failed, but she was spared by the Vale. Here, Petula learned of Fiadoryx's lies and manipulation. Devastated, she ripped off her D.D.D. badge. The Vale secretly offered her asylum, all the while fooling Fiadoryx into believing that she was now dead.
    • NEW: Some days later, Petula revealed that she had originally intended to give the Infernal Tome to Fiadoryx - as it contained information on the Curio. Thankfully, the Tome never reached Fiadoryx. The Tome is currently being studied by another pair of independent ex-Diabolicals (Rellia and Zaedrem), and its existence still remains a secret to Fiadoryx.

    EDGARD
    • The deceased leader of a defunct group of enchanters and tinkerers named A.R.D.E.N.T.
    • His corpse was just discovered inside the Void, alongside some documents that finally revealed his group's sinister intentions.
    • These same documents also seem to reveal that A.R.D.E.N.T. was defeated inside the Void. No other agents are believed to have survived.

    RUGIER DE NEIV
    • One of the legendary Knights of Silver.
    • Spotted recently in the Mirith cemetery, tracking down a lost Crystal Token - the portal keys that allow access to the Knight's secret home.
    • Not long afterwards, another Crystal Token was found in the caves beneath the Atoll Volcano.
    • NEW: Most recently, Rugier de Neiv accompanied a group of adventurers to the temple at the Atoll, causing the entire group to be summoned deep into the Shrine of Elara, where the Shrine's ancient guardian Phern exhorted De Neiv to protect the Shrine from the Creed and anyone else who might seek to abuse the shrine's power.

    "Z" AKA Zaedrem
    • A necromancer and developer of traps who works primarily in Rellia's Library inside the Mercenary Cave, as well as in a well-known rock formation in the South Marali Woods. Originally a member of the D.D.D., he was left to die in an abandoned facility, before being found and healed by Lady Rellia, to whom he now owes his allegiance.
    • He created a trap that emits a deadly poisonous fog. The notes to this trap were subsequently stolen by the Creed, who have since used it to defend themselves.
    • He seems to have an interest in Dethras, one of the original Seven Disciples from ancient history – the one who betrayed Elara.
    • In recent moons, the Mercenary Cave has been crawling with a great number of undead - the work of Zaedrem, as part of that cave's new defense mechanisms. Apart from the poison fog trap, he has also begun to employ a conniving Silencing Trap that renders its victim unable to speak or cast magic of any sort. So far, these defense mechanisms together have functioned well enough to keep enemies at bay.
    • NEW: Zaedrem is currently studying the Infernal Tome that once belonged to Petula. He is hoping to keep the tome a secret from Fiadoryx, who already once attacked the Library in an attempt to uncover information on the Curio. This is especially important now that Petula has revealed that the Infernal Tome contains that exact sort of information.

    RELLIA
    • The creator of the Mercenary Cave, and specifically, the mysterious library contained within.
    • Decades ago, Rellia fought alongside a set of famous mercenaries who later joined the Black Hand. Today, it seems that her current allegiances are to no one but the library itself.
    • In recent moons, Rellia's name re-entered the reports, as she was being sought out by Lord Fiadoryx and his troops. Lord Fiadoryx appeared to think that Rellia would be able to help him in his quest to recharge Marali's piece of the Curio. To this end, Fiadoryx attacked Rellia's Library, but he was rebuffed.
    • NEW: With the Infernal Tome located in the library, Rellia is in the same boat as Zaedrem: they cannot allow Fiadoryx to find out about it.

    PEYTRA GRAY
    • A mysterious old man who seems to figure into the ancient lore of Marali, and who keeps harpies as friends.
    • Peytra Gray was sought by Marali during the Harvest Moon of 452. This quest was of such great importance, that the City of Marali organized an event called the "Great Hunt of the Harvest Moon". On the surface, this "Great Hunt" was called to seek out and destroy the various forces of the Creed, the D.D.D, and Jalux who were all operating within the Marali wilderness. At the same time, Marali also sought to acquire a number of Jade Artifacts, the kind of which can often be found on the various classes of Golems. It would appear that the desire for Jade involves the magical properties of the rare stone: the Jade is rumored to ward off physical and psychological attack... such as that of an assassin. While both of these tasks were certainly important, the true, primary purpose of the Hunt was to find this Peytra Gray.
    • Eventually, the Creed saw through the ruse, and one of their assassins mortally wounded Peytra Gray. The defenders of Marali intervened, and Gray's body was brought safely back to the city. However, the city's efforts to heal him did not go as planned. The city was forced to call in Mother Altaira Mei, who once served as the city's top Healer, many decades ago. It turned out that the Jade Artifacts were well known for their healing properties among the oldest of healers. With this knowledge, Altaira Mei and Marali's current healer, Terwynn Rees, brought Peytra Gray back to health. Now, all that remains to be seen is why Marali went through all this trouble to find Peytra Gray in the first place.
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