Ahrea Campaign 3: Trial Of The Monster Hunter

Session 17: To The Grasslands Of Southern Ahrea

The party rests, but not before Fiva hands Aras a ruby she had stolen from Sepna’s lair when they were escaping.

After the course of several days, the party has made their way back to Southern Ahrea. Ryhar and Yunea are utterly horrified at what they had encountered, and decide to back out of their partnership with Aras before another event such as that could happen to them again. They part in good spirits as Aras, Fiva, and Selea see them off, and the two return to their hometown of Agen.

The three remaining have no where to go, but Aras soon feels Fiva putting her hand in his. Feeling content, Aras decides to lead the two where ever they may find a safe place to rest in the days ahead.

End of Campaign 3.

Session 16: The Halls of Sepna Austir

As the Blood Moon begins to rise within fifteen minutes of midnight, Sepna Austir prepares to begin the ritual sacrifice as the time draws near. Fiva can only watch on as her life is about to end upon the sacrifical altar – unaware of the fact that Aras is desperately rushing through the dragon’s fortress to come to her aid.

Ryhar, Selea, and Yunea begin their ascent up to the bridge to Sepna’s Halls, being delayed by the guards that had not been killed by Aras mere minutes before. They are able to see him run the bridge as they approach, however.

The Dakans inside the hall are aware of the intruder and brace the doors, but Aras smashes his way through the fortress doors. He fights off the eight or so draconians guarding the door, and is now only relying on pure adrenaline to keep him alive.

Aras continues into the Grand Hall, and finds that he is desperately outnumbered by the draconians and the Legion. Fortunately, Ryhar, Selea, and Yunea arrive to help even the odds, and the four begin fighting their way through the guards. Ryhar realizes that the guards are attempting to buy time for the ritual to continue as planned, and yells at Aras to continue on to find Fiva. Aras is surprised by the arrival of his companions and is concerned by leaving them behind, but realizes he must go on and leaves the others behind to carry on into the chambers.

Word has arrived to Sepna that a lone intruder has entered his lair, and Fiva immediately realizes Aras has fought his way in to rescue her. She feels relieved but horrified, knowing that Sepna will kill him for disrupting the dragon’s ritual. In order to prevent the ceremony from being disrupted, the Legion’s priests inform Norman Vortice to guard the wood elf at all costs.

Aras runs the hallway leading to Sepna’s lair, but finds Norman waiting for him on the other side of the chasm. The two fight for the right to enter Sepna‘s lair, and Aras almost loses the duel. Unwilling to let Fiva die Aras continues to fight against Norman, however, and shoves the man off into what appears to be a very deep chasm. He continues on, smashing the doors open into Sepna’s lair.

The Legion guards attempt to stop Aras from interfering with the ritual, but are overwhelmed by Aras and eventually the other three as they enter the room behind him. Amused by the tenacity of the Monster Hunter, Sepna forces Aras into the center of the lair to ask why he had entered. After the two trade their words to one another, it has become apparent that a duel to the death is required to determine Fiva’s fate. Sepna forces a magical shield along the lair so that the others cannot interfere, and the fight between Sepna Austir and the Monster Hunter begins.

Aras nearly dies as he is easily beaten by Sepna while the others watch on in horror, but the Monster Hunter states that only Sepna‘s bones will remain after the fight. Sepna prepares to kill Aras when it appears that the fighter is finished, but Aras pulls out the Wand of Searing Light that Inel had given him, and uses it to blast Sepna in the face. The blast of light ruins the dragon’s left eye, and with the advantage Aras runs up and stabs the ruined eye in order to finish the wound. Sepna is taken aback by the tactic as he crashes into several pillars amongst his lair, and is seemingly crushed by one of them.

The party watches in amazement as it appears that Aras has killed Sepna Austir. As he attempts to free Fiva from her bonds, however, Sepna uses his tail to cause the unsteady ground to collapse. The dragon falls to the depths below as the rest of his lair begins to crumble apart, and Aras ushers the others to leave as he frees Fiva. Overwhelmed by all that occurred, Fiva begs Aras to leave her behind as he is too wounded to run while holding her, but the Monster Hunter uses what little strength he has left in order to carry her to safety.

The two find themselves outnumbered as the remaining guards attempt to kill them for having slain Sepna, but Aras pushes them aside as the chambers begin to collapse. The majority of the enemy find themselves trapped in their hall of worship, and parish in the collapse. Unfortunately the path quickly becomes with rubble, and it appeared that Aras and Fiva were trapped inside as the fortress collapsed.

Ryhar and the others escape the halls, and assume that Aras and Fiva perished once the ruins had fully collapsed. However, Aras stands outside Sepna‘s hall with Fiva in his arms once the smoke has cleared, and it is apparent that he had rescued her from the dragon. The two watch the waterfalls nearby the bridge as they fall to the ground from their exhaustion, both glad to be alive and in each other’s company.

Artwork of Session 17
Aras and the dragon low res

Aras fights against Sepna Austir within the dragon’s lair, as a horrified Fiva Ni Oele Os Mair watches on.

Session 15: The Mines Of The Divide Of The Lands

Despite being badly wounded from his encounter with Norman in the bounty hunter’s camp, Aras starts running towards the Divide of The Lands, desperate to save Fiva from Sepna Austir.

As night sets in, Aras comes across a warband of Dakans, and slaughters them in an ambush. Aras captures the lone survivor and learns that Fiva is still alive but will be sacrificed by Sepna Austir during the “Blood Moon”, a period of the full moon where the dragons are spiritually linked with their creator Dasanar. Aras realizes that this gives him four days to find Sepna, and interrogates the Dakan to divulge the dragon’s whereabouts. Aras learns the location of Sepna’s halls within the Northern border of the Divide Of the Lands, and immediately begins to head there.

Fiva wakes up to find herself upon an altar within the dragon’s fortress, held in place with a force spell as she looks upon Sepna Austir. Unable to leave her position due to the spell, Fiva converses with the dragon in hopes of learning why he had captured her in particular. Sepna becomes charmed by his sacrifice as they speak with one another, realizing that she has a great power within her though he is unable to determine exactly why.

Norman survived his last encounter with Aras and Ryhar, having woken to found that the Legion had magically gafted a plate armor gauntlet onto his left arm. Norman wishes that he had managed to capture Fiva as a slave for himself, and attempts to barter with the Legion in order to keep her. The Legion does not agree to his terms, however, and will not allow him to keep her. Unable to leave as he is contracted under the Legion, Norman is left to guard the doors to Sepna’s chambers until the Blood Moon has passed. He feels that it is unfortunate that the wood elf must die as he found her beautiful, but is content with the sum of money that the Legion was providing him for his services.

Selea has a change of heart after Aras has been gone for a day or so while she and the others travel back to Durden, and decides she will aid him in the attempt to free Fiva. Yunea also decides to help the Monster Hunter with his unachievable but noble goal, and with the others against him Ryhar reluctantly agrees to aid the Monster Hunter as well. They turn around to head northbound, Ryhar finding evidence of Aras passing through the area.

After the course of three and a half days of running through the grasslands to the Revnal Wastes, Aras has come across the tunnel that he and the others had traversed earlier from Northern Ahrea. He re-enters the Divide of the Lands, using Ansos’ map to guide him to the bridge he must take to reach Sepna‘s halls. Inside the tunnel he is ambushed by Nocsune and Atagas, but his desire to save Fiva and get revenge upon Sepna is so great that he fights his way through the opposition with a renewed vigor. After fighting his way though the mines,Aras has found his way through the tunnels to the outside southern crossing that leads to the bridge to Sepna’s chambers.

Ryhar and the other two follow close behind, having made up the gap in time with their wagon. They are forced to leave it at the tunnels, but are able to find Aras’ trail of destruction and exit out the tunnel as well.

As the night of the ritual begins Sepna states that it is unfortunate that Fiva must die as he had enjoyed her company, though the sacrifice is something that he must go through as tribute for Dasanar. Fiva prepares herself for her fate, though the voice guiding her tells her that she must not die. Regardless, Fiva has given up hope, and wishes that Aras will have been wise enough not to follow her.

Aras begins his ascent to the bridge to Sepna Austir’s Halls, and comes under attack by a band of Dakans guarding it from intruders. Aras fights his way through these Dakans, and finds himself staring at the bridge. He begins to run across it despite the enemy charging him from the other side, only having fifteen minutes before the Blood Moon rises above the fortress at midnight.

Session 14: The Arrival of Sepna Austir

Aras gives chase to Norman as they ride out of Durden, but Norman is the superior rider and is able to get the Monster Hunter to lose the trail. Ryhar and the others catch up to Aras, however, and the half-elf begins to start tracking for Norman. The situation seems rather dire to Ryhar but he continues hunting the Bounty Hunter’s trail, hoping to be able to find Fiva and save her in order to impress her.

Over the course of several hours, Ryhar leads the party to a wooded area nearby the Gardnel Wood where Norman has made camp. As the party scouts from afar, Aras is able to see that Fiva has been chained up and confined to a metal box. Enraged, Aras continues to watch on as a band of Legion men ride up. Norman agrees to exchange the elf so that she may be used as an offering to Sepna Austir, in return receiving payment for the large bounty on her head. Aras is taken aback as the deal is made, and horrified to now know that the ancient green dragon is indeed real and waiting for a sacrifice to be made.

Unwilling to let Fiva be that sacrifice, Aras charges straight down into the clearing on horseback, finding himself horribly outnumbered with the Legion’s men. Unable to let Aras face his enemies alone Ryhar and the others follow, though Ryhar feels that Aras will get them all killed.

As the others engage the majority of the Legion’s troops and Norman’s men, Aras takes a straight route towards Fiva’s cage in order to free her. He manages to fight his way through a number of Dakan guards and several of the Legion troopers, though he loses his horse after being bucked off when Norman scares it off. As Norman approaches the downed Monster Hunter, Fiva screams for Aras to abandon her and leave, though he stands up in order to confront the Bounty Hunter. [[:fiva | Fiva becomes frantic upon seeing the two duel and attempts to free herself to help her friend, though she is unable to move due to a force spell placed upon her.

Aras engages directly with Norman, though the Bounty Hunter has gotten the advantage on Aras and quickly starts wounding him as Fiva watches on in horror. Despite attempting to keep fighting, Aras receives a severe stab wound to his stomach, and is defeated as Norman shoves him further down into the wooded grove. As Norman prepares to perform a coup de grace on Aras, however, Ryhar shoves Norman aside in order to rescue the Monster Hunter.

Already having drawn the ire of Norman for interrupting the Bounty Hunter’s kill, Ryhar yells at Aras to rescue Fiva as he will stay behind to hold Norman off. Badly wounded and stumbling, Aras nevertheless continues to make his way towards Fiva‘s cage in order to free her. As Aras safely makes his way up the hill to reach Fiva’s cage, Ryhar gains the upper hand in the fight against Norman and slices the man’s left arm off during the duel.

As Aras approaches Fiva’s cage, however, a gigantic green dragon lands behind her and stares intently at him. Aras is taken by complete surprise, and is nearly killed as the dragon lets loose with a fiery breath towards him. As the Monster Hunter avoids the fire coming towards him, he finds he is unable to save Fiva as the dragon grabs her cage and begins to fly away towards the Divide of the Lands.

Caught between killing Norman and assisting Aras after seeing the dragon land, Ryhar leaves Norman on the ground to help the Monster Hunter. Several Legion men run over to Norman and rescue him during the chaos of the dragon’s arrival, and begin riding off with their work accomplished.

With the fight over [[:selea | Selea]], Ryhar, and Yunea find Aras standing where Fiva’s cage had been. The Monster Hunter appears to be utterly shocked over what had happened, and realizes that the dragon he had faced was Sepna Austir himself.

Ryhar realizes that rescuing The Light Of Step is a lost cause as Aras swears revenge upon Sepna, the Monster Hunter intending to find the dragon and rescue Fiva from him. The others are not as confident as Aras is, and state that they will not go to find Sepna as it would be a suicide mission to fight the ancient dragon. Ryhar states that Fiva is already dead as she’s in the dragon’s possession, and that Aras will die if he attempts to save her.

Unmoved by his party’s concern for their own health, Aras states that he knows all of what Ryhar has told him and dismisses them as he heads off alone to the grasslands to find Sepna Austir. Despite knowing that he will not likely survive the encounter and that Fiva did not love him the way he did her, Aras is unwilling to let her die without living up to the promise he had made to her months before.

Ryhar, Selea, and Yunea watch on as Aras runs off to fight the ancient dragon, depressed over the fact that he and Fiva Ni Oele Os Mair will die within several day’s time. Unable to aid them in any feasible way, they turn around in order to return to Durden.

Session 13: Durden

The party continues to ride along the grasslands after their encounter with Norman in Ea’Ven.
Selea continues to hint to Aras that she is interested in him, which he somewhat picks up on but is uninterested. Fiva continues to be jealous, but the voice telling her not to worry of him is becoming almost unbearable in her ears.
Regardless, Aras and Fiva spend one last night stargazing together, and she makes the effort to hold his hand though the voice tells her not too. Aras realizes he loves her as they spend the rest of the night together hand in hand, but feels unable to tell her this just yet, wanting to wait for a more romantic moment to do so.

The party arrives in the city of Durden, one of the largest cities in Southern Ahrea. Aras and Ryhar agree they’ll be able to lose track of Norman there. While the elves eat butter treats left out in the middle of the night, Aras pays for the inn.
Aras and Fiva go to the tavern, where the elf is more than glad to drink to her heart’s content after their journey. Aras indulges himself as well, and the two become wildly drunk over the course of the night. Fiva in particular draws the attention of an annoyed woman with red hair and a wizard’s hat, though the two blow the witch off.
Feeling extremely confident despite his usual hesitance to let his feelings get in the way, Aras foregoes an more romantic location as he tells the wood elf that he loves her, and asks for her hand in marriage.
Fiva is overjoyed to hear this, but in a moment the voice screams at her to not return his feelings. It overwhelms her, and she is forced to say no to him and that she does not love him back. Aras is devastated by the news, and Fiva begins crying upon realizing what she has done though she has no idea why she had rejected him. She leaves the tavern in order to spend time in their inn room.
Feeling utterly destroyed by his emotions for her over the past two years, Aras begins to drink himself to being blackout drunk in an effort to forget of what had just happened. Selea attempts to console Aras during his moment, and ultimately allows him to stay the night in her room, though he passes out on her floor.
Fiva spends the rest of the night alone in the room she was supposed to share with Aras, and begins weeping over the fact that he had said what she had wanted him to say for the longest time. However, the voice continues to tell her not to be involved with him, and she feels heartbroken over the fact the voice was guiding her decisions instead of herself. She begins questioning the voice of why she should give up the one thing she wanted most, but finds herself falling asleep.

In the morning, Fiva wakes up early in order to enjoy the morning sun, having lost all memory of what had happened the night before. As she stands in the open grass in front of the inn, however, several men begin to rush into the inn. Fiva finds herself captured by Norman as she tries to warn Aras about the threat.
As if by instinct Aras wakes up, and is immediately taken aback by someone attempting to break down Selea’s door. Selea is horrified as Aras fends off and kills their attacker, though she notices he’s immediately become concerned with Fiva’s health. After checking with Ryhar and Yunea, Aras realizes that Fiva has been captured by Norman, and fights off his henchmen to get outside.
Aras is too late to stop Norman as he is carrying Fiva on horseback, but immediately steals the nearest horse and begins riding off after the bounty hunter, nearly killing the red haired witch from the night before as he does so.
Without any other options, Ryhar, Selea, and Yunea hitch up their wagon and follow after Aras, unsure as to what will happen to Fiva.

Session 12: The Wood Elven Village of Ea'Ven

Selea is overjoyed to see her new companions come back with the freed citizens of Yaegstad.
Yunea and Ryhar chat about the days events, while Fiva takes the night to rest.
Selea informs the party that the Order of Ayer should arrive to assist the people of Yaegstad and pick her up, and the party elects to rest in Yaegstad for the night.
Selea talks about her past with Aras over the night. She mentions her time in Alenosa, and growing up as a daughter of the headmaster of the Order. Aras gives her a summary of his past, as well, though he leaves choice details out of it.

In the morning the Order of Ayer arrive, and begin assisting the people of Yaegstad.
Sir Gardnel, Selea’s father, banishes her from the Order in disgrace for disobeying his orders to continue marching past the town. Selea is devastated by the news.
The Order finishes their assist and leave the town without Selea. As she has no where else to go, Aras offers her to join his party, and she agrees without hesitation.
During the next night, Fiva notices that Aras is spending a good amount of time talking with Selea. She feels jealous, but a voice tells her not to be worried.
A messenger from the Legion arrives to Yaegstad, and leaves a message with Aras stating that Norman Vortice is in Southern Ahrea and is actively hunting for him and Fiva. Aras is rather unnerved with the news.

The next morning the party departs for Ea’Ven, one of the villages that Ryhar visits in order to give them food. The party arrives to the village in about a day’s travel, and Ryhar makes his food delivery.
Selea has developed a bit of a crush on Aras, and continues to follow him and Fiva around. Fiva is not amused, but again the voice tells her to let it go.
The party rests up in Ea’Ven for the next couple days. Fiva spends a bit more time with Aras, though she feels somewhat torn due to some reason she is unable to explain. Selea and the rest of the party become well aquainted with one another.
As the party prepares to leave Ea’Ven, they come under attack by Norman’s band. Aras and the others fend off the bounty hunter, and escape on the wagon and on horseback.

Session 11: The Dakan Lair

Fiva and Ryhar begin tracking the draconians as Aras follows along, hoping to save the people before they are sacrificed.
The trio are able to track down the draconians to a lair just outside of the wastelands. They observe the situation, and decide to just rush the guards as it seems time is running out for the captured civilians.
Aras, Fiva, and Ryhar fight their way into the draconian lair, and kill off the draconians on the first floor. They manage to save a few civilians, but are informed the others were taken down below to be prepared to be fed to “Sepna Austir”. Ryhar immediately recognizes the name as being the name of the 1st green dragon created by Dasanar (the god of Death), but Aras doubts the legitimacy of such claims.
The trio come across a secret door, and find an altar of the black dragon Vas, which Ryhar explains the story of to Fiva. They find two paths in the hall and split up as Ryhar goes down the west passage, while Fiva and Aras go down the east passage. Aras and Fiva end up caught in trap doors, and fall down into the second floor.

In Yaegstad Selea continues to tend to the wounded.
Yunea converses with Selea, both of them being concerned about the three that went after the draconians.

Ryhar goes down a flight of stairs, and hears the loud thud of Fiva and Aras falling through the trap door. Unfortunately, he comes under attack by dakans. He fights them off, and rushes to find the other two.
Fiva and Aras find themselves trapped in a holding cell, and that this holding cell is in plain view of several dakans. They begin prodding at the two in the cell, though Aras and Fiva attempt to hold them off.
Ryhar sounds his horn in order to draw the attention of the dakans to himself, and they leave Fiva and Aras to attack Ryhar.
Ryhar holds off the dakans, while Fiva fumbles around and manages to open the locked door to the cell.
The two aid Ryhar, and are able to kill the remaining hostile dakans in the room. A bit shaken, the three continue their search for the remaining captives.
The three come across a room where three humans are casting force spells on the captives, reciting a prayer for them to join Sepna Austir. The trio interrupt and defeat the cultists and their escort, and free the remaining captives.
Seeing that they are about to be overrun with dakans, the three get the freed captives outside and on the way to Yaegstad.
Content with a job well done, the three return to Yaegstad as well.

Session 10: The Adelven Wastes and Yaegstad

The party continues their way through the Divide tunnel system, making their way though using the map Ansos gave them. Morr finds the party as they travel through the tunnels, having escaped the monsters the party had ran into earlier. He takes responsibility for getting the party lost, but they do not mind and allow him to guide them out of the tunnels. With his assistance the party finds the exit out to the Revnal Wastes on the southern border of the Divide, having made their way to Southern Ahrea.

Though the others press the importance of continuing on, Aras and Fiva Ni Oele Os Mair are content to watch the sun setting upon Southern Ahrea for the first time in their lives as they stand on the southern border. Fiva in particular is rather happy despite the dusty landscape she finds herself in, content that the Monster Hunter had finally lived up to his promise to take her to the southern lands.

Morr is able to find the party a nearby trading post on the southern border in order for Ryhar to purchase more horses. Aras also inquires about purchasing a horse, though he is somewhat amazed and annoyed to find that his old horse Brie is the only one for sale after Ryhar buys the others. Aras buys Brie again, though Fiva forces him to ride as a passenger on his own horse as she wants to hold the reins. The party parts ways with Morr after their stop at the trading post, who is now preparing himself to return back to Northern Ahrea. Aras wishes him luck, being concerned that the guide might not be so lucky on his return trip to the north.

With the past of their homeland behind them, Aras and Fiva are content to go anywhere that their new companions wish to lead them. Ryhar mentions the nearby town of Yaegstad as a good place to stay for a while, and the two agree to follow. Though the arid climate and duststorms of the Adelven Wastes provide the Monster Hunter and the Light of Step challenges they have yet to encounter, the two feel confident they will make it to the safety of a new life as they travel after Ryhar. Fiva is very excited, hoping that Aras will finally be able to stop fighting and live a normal life with her.

The party rides out of the Adelven Wastes into the open grasslands of Southern Ahrea after about two days of travel, and Fiva is overcome by the beauty of the landscape. Shes runs out into the fields barefoot as she experiences the lushness of the grasslands for the first time, and drags Aras with her as the others watch on.

The two end their first night in the grasslands stargazing again upon Fiva’s insistence, while Ryhar and Yunea set up their own camp. Though Ryhar has attempted to flirt with Fiva before, he is under the impression that Aras and Fiva are smitten with each other. Yunea finds the wood elf to be rather silly, but is happy to have helped the Light of Step to obtain her wish.

The party continues onwards to Yaegstad the next day, but are horrified to find the town ablaze as they approach. Concerned for the civilians of the town, Aras rushes to the cause of the fire as the party enters the burning town. As he wanders the highroad, he finds a young cleric behind held down and about to be executed by several Dakans. Aras prevents the execution, shooting them with his crossbow and being aided by Fiva and Ryhar’s firepower.

Aras helps the cleric to her feet and helps the others fight off a number of the draconians off and away from Yaegstad. The cleric introduces herself as Selea, being a member of the Order of Ayer that went to the town to aid the citizens though the rest of the Order continued on their path to the south. She informs the party that a number of the citizens were dragged off by the draconians to be used as sacrifices, but she is unable to do anything about it.

Aras, Fiva, and Ryhar volunteer their help to go and find the citizens, and Yunea decides to help Selea help the injured and defend the town in the event the draconians come back. Fiva feels sick to her stomach after realizing the gravity of her situation, now knowing that the draconians had come to Southern Ahrea – and that perhaps she would not have the life she wanted so soon. Regardless, she dons her armor and Vyraelys once again, not wanting her friend to go on such a dangerous quest alone.

As Aras, Fiva, and Ryhar run out to find the missing citizens, Yunea is able to tell that Selea is instantly smitten with Aras’ demeanor. Yunea is greatly concerned with the state of Yaegstad, as she wonders why the Order of Ayer and the King’s Riders would allow a town of the South to fall into enemy hands.

Once the party has done all they can to assist her, Selea informs the party that the Order of Ayer should arrive to assist the people of Yaegstad and pick her up, and the party elects to rest in Yaegstad for the night.

Selea talks about her past with Aras over the night. She mentions her time in Alenosa, and growing up as a daughter of the headmaster of the Order. Aras gives her a summary of his past, as well, though he leaves choice details out of it.

Session 9: The Divide Of The Lands

The party makes it to the northern border of the Divide of the Lands. Ryhar insists that the party hires guides, and locates the two he would like to hire for the crossing.

The guides lead the party down into the bottom of the north side of the Divide. The party are witness to a large green dragon flying about in the sky, to which the guides are horrified as dragons have not been in the Divide since the 1st War of the Reign nearly 40 years ago. At the bottom of the Divide, the guides prepare a boat to make the crossing to the southern side.

Fiva is nearly swallowed whole by an Aberath (cavern catfish) while she dangles her legs of the side of the boat, and is scolded for doing so. A hydra eats the aberath in front of the party, however, and begins attacking their boat. As the party defends themselves, the senior guide is caught by one of the hydra’s heads and is eaten alive before them.

Unnerved by the circumstances, the junior guide named Morr crashes the boat into a cavern that they use to escape to Southern Ahrea without going up the rest of the divide, and the party retreats into the cavern.

As it becomes apparent that the party is wandering through some kind of old dwarven mine, Morr realizes that he has led the party into the wrong tunnel, and that he has no idea where they are going. They continue on, however, and come under attack by gels that were disturbed by their presence.

The party defeats the gels, though the fight attracts the attention of several Giant Rhagodessas and Nocsune (“Blood Worm”, large carnivorous caterpillar-esque creatures). The party fights their way through in order to protect Ryhar and Yunea’s horses and wagon, though Morr is caught by a Rhagodessa and dragged to his apparent death.

The party, now without a guide, ventures deeper into the mine to avoid any more hostile creatures. As they pass through a water-filled clearing, however, they come across an Ataga (giant leech/squid-like creature) that nearly catches one of the horses. Aras frees the horse, but is caught by the Ataga and nearly eaten before Fiva frees him.

The party continues into the mine, and are stopped by a magic wielding Dwarf that forces their halt with a spell. He introduces himself as Ansos, and upon realizing that the party does not intend to harm him lets them free. He is rather surprised to hear that Arvic’s son Aras is in their company, and seems to be rather agreeable once this has been established. Upon hearing the story of their travel through the divide, Ansos allows the party to stay the night in his home – an old fortress built underground.

Aras and Fiva find her favorite fairytale in the bedroom they share in Ansos’ home: “Tale of the Crystal Maiden”, which she recited many times before in SONG 2 and recites to him again as they cuddle and rest. (Which for them, a little bed like this would be the greatest thing in the world considering all of the places they have been resting over the last few months.)

Ansos wakes the two in the morning, commenting on their poor manners for sharing the same bed – especially so as they are not married, to which the two are horribly embarrassed by.

Ryhar strikes it off well with Ansos, and finds out the lay of the land to return to the surface in Southern Ahrea. Aras listens in as well, and Ansos provides the two a map of the tunnel systems within the Divide. The party leaves Ansos’ home, though he informs them to say hello to his daughter Aya, a dwarf named Gorg, and Adgar the wizard for him.

Session 8: The Wood Elven Village of Ilena

Aras, Fiva, and Ryhar make their way to the Wood Elven Village of Ilena. While they settle in for the night, Aras and Fiva are introduced to Yunea, Ryhar’s traveling companion.

Ryhar delivers food and supplies to the village, one of the many stops he makes on his travels. Aras finds out Ryhar somewhat illegally hunts for food in the Great Forest and provides it to the elven villages.

Aras and Fiva spend the night well cared for by the villagers of Ilena, due to their status in Ia’Nellsa. Fiva is informed she is now known as the “Knight Of The Free Winds” due to her having abandoned her post in the capital. Rather pleased to have the past behind them, Fiva takes Aras to the top of the tallest tree in the village, and spends the night stargazing with him – though Aras as always is afraid of heights.

In the morning, Aras awakes to the sounds of a fight outside and investigates – find that a band of Northern Riders are harassing and hurting the locals of Ilena, as their village is within the private hunting grounds of King Windsor the 2nd.

One knight is about to run down an innocent elven woman and her child until Aras intervenes, shooting the man dead with his crossbow. Aras is confronted by the other three knights that were harassing the citizens, but with Fiva’s help they are able to fight and defeat the knights.

With the Northern Riders dead within their town, the elves of Ilena are horrified and fear for their lives in the event the King sends men to avenge the fallen troops. Ryhar calms the people about their fears and informs them to cross the divide for safer villages there, and the village prepares to evacuate.

Ryhar informs Aras and Fiva that though they meant well, they will be wanted criminals for the rest of their lives for killing knights. The two have no other options in Northern Ahrea, however, and so go with Ryhar and Yunea as they prepare to cross the Divide of the Lands to South Ahrea.

As the party descends to the Divide, they yet again come under attack by Norman and a band of Legion troopers. Aras and Fiva are now very much surprised to see Norman alive – and even more so surprised to see he is now working with their newest enemies in the field.

The party fends Norman off, but he informs them that the Legion wants Aras and Fiva dead due to their killing of the bands near Vels.

Aras almost leaves the party in order to make a distraction to allow Fiva to escape to Southern Ahrea safely, but she does not permit him to do so.


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