The Heroes of Bingle are now in possession of a customized vardo, courtesy of the very grateful Duke of Winkburgh. But how difficult will it be to train some of the giant, savage Achaierai birds to pull it? And as they load up onto this new mode of transportation and make their way out of town, which direction will they head? Will travel in Aïn without the aid of portals be even more dangerous?
It started as a simple dungeon run…
5 yahoos brought together by common purpose. Loot. But the loot they discovered, a magical amulet once owned by the Keeper of Secrets himself, has turned into much more than they bargained for. It has brought untold chaos to their lives by allowing you, the Watchers of the Time Stream, to transcend your reality and influence theirs, with forces of good and evil.
It is also a key to unlock secrets. Secrets of a time before the great War of Ideas. Secrets locked in the minds of the Wardens, the 5 elemental titans whose protection has helped ensure generations of peace in Ain. But to do that, the team must find and rescue these Wardens, who have been captured themselves. How and by whom remains an ongoing mystery. But attempting to piece together that puzzle has led them to their current location, here in Winkburgh. A town of commerce, a convergence point of inter-realm trade routes, that has fallen into lawlessness in recent months after the arrival of a shadowy figure known as The Ashen Mage.
Our team arrived on the outskirts of Winkburgh and saw first-hand the disorder that had taken over the town. A gang of roughnecks called The Flock were terrorizing the woman they had come to meet, Cornelia the Clean, a member of an association of wizards known as The Natural Order, who have been attempting to track the locations of the Wardens throughout the Realms of Ain. The team bribed the Flock, who rode off astride Winkburgh’s local flightless bird, the Achaierai, an enormous, savage bird of prey, equipped with a gland that allows it to secrete a toxic black smoke.
Cornelia suggested the team investigate the disappearance of the Duke of Winkburgh, and its connection with Kalkata Theed, the Ashen Mage. They soon discovered the Duke had been polymorphed into a duck by Theed in a fit of pique and he had retreated to his residence in shame, taking the town’s entire lawkeeping force with him.
But a visit to the tower where The Ashen Mage resided while in WInkburgh, revealed a number of helpful clues. The team fought their way past the creatures in the tower, taking letters, experimental spells, and a magical lockbox with them as they left.
They also ensured that their traveling companions, Lily’s displaced mother and sisters, were safely escorted back to their home island, by a pair of Winkburgh locals named Enus and Arfus.
Then they returned to Cornelia’s camp to gain her assistance in opening the footlocker they had discovered. Unfortunately, it had been magically boobytrapped, causing Cornelia to shrink in size when she unsealed it - an effect that seems to be continuing in periodic bursts. Opening the trunk also unleashed an intense beam of light and a dark, winged monster into the night sky. The light came from a single, gleaming dragon scale, which Uggo retrieved from the chest and pressed onto the creature, bursting it asunder in a single radiant blast.
The next morning, as Cornelia continued to shrink, the team returned to the Duke, cracked the riddle hidden inside the eggs he had been laying in his time as a duck, and gave him the words that would revert him back to his natural form.
A grateful Duke insisted the team be compensated for their heroic deed, so his right hand man, Preet, set about formalizing their reward. Siv requested that a local clergyman he had spoken to named Chalmers be named as official advisor to the Duke. Lily suggested the town throw a big party as a means of restoring morale to Winkburgh. And the rest of the team brainstormed the exact specifications of a new means of transportation: a customized vardo, compliments of the Duke, to be pulled by a number of their very own Achaierai.
As we ended last week, Siv and Uggo returned to Chalmers’ temple to inform him of his new position on the Duke’s council, while Fahima, James, and Lily decided to try out their new spells and attempt to find a way to assist the ever smaller Cornelia the Clean.'
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