New Shapeshifting Tier -- now there's just one
----5 Combat or were form
"13 is a Slut...Look at the women he's slept with.
"13 had just spent 3 weeks getting the crap beat out of him Sir John Gaunt,
when all of a sudden 4 beautiful super model/mages walk up to him wanting to have
sex. What else was he supposed to do....
"really. 13 was just being a man. I would have thought it odd if didn't have sex
with all of them.
"We all know that Toriana is a Virgin.
"Toriana is not a virgin, and don't tell Dara that she is. Because Dara's going
to be pissed when she sacrifices Toriana and finds out that she's not a virgin.
" sound like a win-win situation to me.
" Ok Jackie, look. Toriana tells Gwenyth that you have a "nice safe place" that
is "downstairs" with "Guards"...how else was she supposed to react?"
"Mommie Mommie why is Aunty Gwenyth running away?"
"Please shut up Dear and re-load"
" Mumph Mumph wyth amth ith tanlkingth funnyth?"
"Please be quite dear while I remove the dagger from your mouth"
Fineas - Lynxia
13 - Lynxia
Toriana - Rebma
Jacob - Riding around Shadow on a striped horse, letting the wind blow
through his hair. Like a hardened James Dean in a Porshe Spyder 550 driving up the PCH.
- Talks to Sir John Gaunt (SJG) about the Hellmaids.
- Next Topic of conversation is about Shapeshifter detection. SJG likes the
idea very much, and tells Fineas to go and talk to Philip the Ambassador to
-While waiting around in Weirmonchen, he makes a few trump sketches. Philip
has 3 recruits for Fineas' Sniffer Program. They all are Psyche sensitives and weres (but not Weir; Weir are initiates of a minor power that enables them to animate severed parts for some time, to be easily reassembled and to heal even faster -- it also makes them sterile), one is a man in his forties, one a woman in her twenties and one a teenager. Fineas makes them all his Aide-d'-camp. He Trumps himself and the three Weirmonkeners back to amber.
- Back in Amber He seeks out Breggor. He is also made an Aide-d'-camp.
- Decides to check out SJG for Shapeshifting, but has a change of heart.
Decides that he would be expecting it if he was a real Shapeshifter. So Fineas
comes up with a cunning plan.
- Now that 13 and Sabine have some Magi-coins, the next thing that they do is
design a Rube-Goldberg-earth-elemental-powered Machine. They make several
of the parts in Lynxia while healing, and decide that the antenna, shielding and
final assembly in the shadow Sigmarin that has a good steady ley line.
-Toriana finalizes her design of the Magi-coin protection device. Sets up spy
devices on Gwenyth.
-All is better after secret stuff, and Toriana continues work on fun devices in
her Lynxian condo.
-Decides to check up on her father and finds out that he was well enough to
head out on his own steam. While talking to the staff, Toriana finds out about
the rescue and amnesty of Dara.
-He finds a 5k Oscrayin (Hessian-esque halforcs) army. There is a bidding war amongst several other shadow people. The other shadow people are unhappy with Jacob and some of them make assassination attempts upon him. The ever resourceful Jacob out bids everybody else and takes his booty out in to shadow.
-He leads them to a Greenland like shadow to do a bit of sorting out and
conditioning. Checks in with his air elemental Zariel (for those of you following
along at home Zariel was also known as Hannan and Zariel).
-He goes back to Amber and quarters the City searching (sniffing) out a Chaos trail. They fine one it but
quickly lose it. His sniffers work a bit harder and are able to pick
it up in the third floor hallway and track it to a looked door. He sends
some guards around to the outside incase she decides to escape out a window.
Unknown to him she pokes her head out the window, turns into a winged serpent and flies away. The castle/city defenses kick in and hurricane winds hammer her down. A chase ensue's and they capture her on the tower of some form of Rat God in Amber City. They take the captured Chaos spy back to the Castle for some good old fashioned torture. Fineas and Col. Sir Bors find out that she has been in the city for about a week and in the Castle for about five days. She had killed an old servant woman who lived alone and disguised it's self as her to spy on the Family.
-Talks to Chango about Alcazar's Blood. Chungo gives 13 several vials of it to
play with. Chango is most impressed by it's magical properties, though, by description, it isn't as good as Amberite blood.
-13 takes one of the vials down to the dungeon and visits Marayka the Hellmaid.
He tells her that Lintra's heir had been rescued and given amnesty. The
hellmaids were to be hers under her word bond and that she was to be released. 13 offered her one of the vials as a bit of a pick me up. Marayka wanted to know whose this was, and 13 told he Lord Alcazar. She smiled and finished the vial. 13 procured horses and took Marayka to Dara who was currently in residence in Gerard's villa.
-13 meets Dara who thanks him for her rescue. They talk. She iasks 13 about Amber's social customs and gets a brief but useful primer. She tells him about the Geas that King Svayvill had placed on the Chaos houses. She tells him that the Geas would be satisfied if she were to adopt all of the Amberites. 13 Told her that he would pass this on to the appropriate family members.
-Working off of the information that she had picked up during SECRET STUFF
Toriana heads off to meet with a person by the name of Baba-Yaga and her
chicken legged hut. Heinrik convinces her to get more backup (a bunch of rangers) before charging into the Scary Wood and its resident big-time sorceress. Toriana juggernauts in, trashing magical traps and defenses with Pattern. Baba shows up and they Dish. Toriana unsuccessfully tries to bribe Baba-Yaga.
Next Toriana asks Baba-Yaga what would it take to get a hold of a Basilisk
agent. Baba-Yaga tells Toriana that she will think about it. Toriana tries to
make a trump sketch of Baba-Yaga to no avail. Baba-Yaga knows that trick and
has defenses for it. Baba-Yaga tells Toriana that she is more then welcome to
make a trump of her weasleboy Baldrick (who has a cleaver plan...).
-Toriana Goes back to Amber and is sniffed by one of Fineas' Sniffers. She put
up a mild fuss about this.
-He is concerned about the Oscrays Morale and takes them to a Carnival
-Zarial meets up with Nelson. Nelson trumps Jacob. He sends them both
through to Hunac via trump to work on the whole Tantric Love Fest.
-Hauls his prisoner back to the Castle for questioning. The agent is to be held in
the same kind of confinement as Lord Alcazar. Tries to decipher the Chaosian
code on a letter that he finds on the Prisoner.
-Trumps HRH Morwyn (also there in the background is Flora) and talks with her about "sniffing" for Chaosians in Rebma. She tells him that she will look into it, but doubt's any Chaosian could get through Rebma's defenses. He continues his contact with her to ask after Llewella's condition, and is informed that she is in a coma like state and regenerating nicely.
-Leaves Gerard's Villa and Dara behind and goes back to the Castle to spend a
Pleasant Afternoon with Sabine.
-Lies to Gwenyth about the Chaos Spy. Threatens her with the Dungeon, and
Lies some more. "I have a nice, safe, place for you down stairs. A place where
there are guards just outside the door if you need them". Gwenyth figures out
Toriana's clever ruse, but then fails at her own, by making believe that Gerard
had just entered the room behind Toriana. A bit of a standoff for a minute
while the two women try to come up with better ruse's. Gwenyth rabbit-punches Toriana in the throat and tries to trump away. Toriana grabs Gwenyth
just as she starts to trump out and hangs on despite getting two fingers broken. They arrive at one of Gwenyth's Castles. Gwenyth starts calling for her guards when Toriana "memory" trumps them to Rebma. Toriana starts calling for her own guards and Gwenyth takes Toriana hostage. Toriana memory-Trumps Queen Moire and Gwenyth tries to shut her up with a dagger shoved up under her jaw and through the tongue into her pallette. That's too much for Tori's guards; seconds later Gwenyth is nailed to the wall with two shortswords and looking down at her severed dagger-hand. Toriana trumps Queen Moire and gives her Gwenyth, and asks for some healing for the both of them.
-Meets with Holrune in Hunac about the Tantric love fest. Finds out from
Holrune that the info about the Hendrake battle plans came from the capture of
Lord Alcazar by 13. Also learns from Holrune the following
1. The capture of the Hellmaid Marayka by 13 and Sabine.
2. The Capture of Lord Alcazar of Hendrake by 13 and Sabine.
3. The rescue of Dara by 13, Fineas and Sabine.
4. Dara's Amnesty and the use of the Hellmaid's against non
5. All of the information passed on to him from Fineas had come from the "questioning" of Marayka, Alcazar, and Dara.
6. That he should check in with his family more often instead of riding around
"blind" in Shadow.
-As #3 makes it doubtful that the Hendrakes will actually follow through on the tantric connection Jacob changes targets and aims the Hunac Tantric love fest at neutralizing or cleansing the primary necromantic weak point.
-Finalizes the make-up and Morale of his Oscray troops.
-Trumps to Hunac and visits with Prince Eugen of Shandora. Fineas tells him of
the troops that he has in Arden and is willing to give them to him. Eugen is a bit
concerned, but is willing to go. They get to Arden and Eugen is pleased with the
troops. Eugen suggests to Fineas that he go to the Shandoran Shadow and
recruit some allies for him. Most likely the Aquatainian's. Fineas tells Eugen
that he will do so. Fineas tries to convince Eugen to take the Shandoran Throne
when they take back the Shadow.
-13 returns to the castle and finds Sabine getting ready for a night on the town
with "The Boys", Elmore and Chango. She tells him that they are going to a placecalled "Bloody Marlene's". 13 warns her to be careful and be armed. She tellshim not to worry, since nobody would attack three of the castle Mage's. 13 tells her that last time he was out with them all three of them were attacked, and
know with kidnappings becoming vogue precaution would be a good thing. She
would tell him the next moringing that they were attacked, but were able to
take care of themselves quit well (even while blitzed out of there gourds).
-13 heads out into the Country side to meet with Duchess Lornaya of House
Chantris. He talks to her about her Houses aid in the war against the
Hendrake's, Hans and Franz any dependents they may of left behind, and a small boon that he is willing to give the Chantis' for their aid. She tells him that
Franz left behind a Wife (Mariana) and small child (Fritz), and a small boon
would be most appreciated. He then talks to her about finding a place in the
county, and she suggests a man (Binx) in Amber City to meet with about finding a place. She mentions that once 13 had a Villa, he would need a staff and that
Mariana and Fritz would be the perfect people to start with as a staff. He
thanks her for her time and leaves for Amber City.
-Moire comes to Toriana's aid and casts healing spells on Toriana's mouth and hands Gwenyth over to her staff for healing and incarceration. Gwenyth spends some time in a cell designed for mindraping and Toriana finds out about all of Gwenyth's goodies:
1. All of Gwenyth's hiding places, palaces, and castle's.
2. What Baba-Yaga is like, enough to make a trump of her.
3. All of Gwenyth's contacts.
4. All of the "unauthorized" trump making she had done over the years. There is, for instance, another pair of Trumps for Amber City and another place. Gwenyth is not sure who hired her for that one as they operated through multiple cut-outs.
5. And that she was on the up and up since she had been rescued by Toriana.
Except for some minor trump spying. This she did so she could use the info for
future blackmail/bribery possibilities. She found that most of the things that
the the young Princelings were doing quite boring.
Toriana thanks Queen Moire and leaves Gwenyth with her.
-Toriana Goes to her Lynxian condo and thinks about re-calibrating all of her
SECRET STUFF to be used on Dara.
-While getting everything together for the Tantric love fest Jacob decides to
try something. He puts his own blood on the Tantric love Totems. Between
Holrune, Jacob, and The Eye of the Sun the party is in full swing in no time.
-He and Holrune Cleanse the Necromancy gate areas of any latent Necro magic.
-He trumps Kelimon and finds out all the latest goings on in Amber.
1. Fineas and his Spy.
2. Toriana and Gwenyth's cat fight.
3. The sniffers in Amber and Rebma.
Jacob - Hunac
Toriana - In her Lynxian condo
13 - Castle Amber
Fineas - Hunac
Advanced Pattern aspects of Probability, Senses and Defense all cost 10 points each. Advanced Shadowshifting costs 20.
You get there by going through Specializations.
You're limited to increasing two specializations of a power aspect at a time. (2 points per spend per aspect.)
So it would take you 5 spends to get full Adv Pattern Senses, for instance, by way of, say, Sense Logrus 2, Shadow Trail 2, Identify Trail 2, Sense
Shadowpaths 2, and 2 just to finish it. The points in Specializations go towards the eventual Advanced ability.
At the end you could do like Fiona and spread your awareness over a region of shadow and watch for any shadow movement, trails, paths, logrus use etc within it.
Defense would be, say, Easier, Faster, Stealthier, Affects Others, Full.
The last two points can go just towards finishing the advancement.
PLUS you have to work at the advancement in game. Experiment. Study. Push your limits. So improving more than 2 at a time would be really difficult.
You do not have to have full standard Pattern to start working on an advanced aspect. You just have to have bought up to the standard version of that aspect.
So if you'd only bought up, say, Defense, you could still Specialize in it and could eventually end up with Advanced Defense and Beginner everything else.
Don't forget that you can buy Power Words individually, for 2 points each. 1 point each after the first 5. Gerard and Sir John and some of the Rebman royals can teach various Words.
Only Dworkin has/had 100 points in Pattern.
Trump Memory is as far as Trump goes, outside of Specializations and enhancing it with magic or Pattern.
15 pts of Sorcery and 10 of Conjuration are as far as they go, aside from Specializations.
There are two swanmaids currently in the Castle. They are crown couriers and cousins, part of a very small contingent of their sort.
They are slender women of medium height with Nordic features and straight shoulder length hair. Both have dark gray skin and hair, but blue eyes, and carry big dark-gray feather-cloaks. Their coloration, and that of their feather-cloaks, is fading towards pale skin, white-blond hair and white feathers by the hour.
They wait around for several hours to report to the Regent, resting (they look worn), eating and chatting with the guardsmen. After they finally get to report (delayed by all the excitement) they head out.
Fineas' sniffers, when fully debriefed, yield the following info.
First, part of what they sense is olofactory and part is psychic but perceived as smell. The older two can tell them apart, the kid is learning.
Fineas notes that they get a more complete picture after discussing it among themselves.
Amberites and Rebman royals (Kelamon, Tori) smell really good, sort of warm-fuzzy good, to all the Weir. They can't tell them apart, as groups, but do know all of those that they've met by their individual scents.
Chaosites, both the captive lord and the hellmaid, do not have any antithetical stink.
They discern two main classes of shapeshifter: weres and, as they think of it, Others. They can tell Weir from normal werewolves and can easily differentiate wereleopards and the two wereswans apart from other types. The older fellow has met vampires of one type and they smelled wereish.
Florimel, the Lord of Chaos and Tanitheel all smell like Other shapeshifters. That would be the more versatile kind.
Tanitheel and the hellmaid also smell a bit like vampires. Tanitheel is known to be an occasional blood-drinker, taking small amounts as part of her erotic activities. The hellmaids are known as blood-drinkers.
Sir John does not smell like a shapeshifter of any kind, nor like one of the houses of Amber or Lir.
Normal weres can smell strong magic. The sensitives can smell weak magic, sometimes.
Also, I'm reading THE HONOURABLE COMPANY, a history of the English East India Company, and the notion that the Jesby actions look anything like that is right out. Two hundred years of dinking around with either their heads or thumbs up their asses -- no.
More like WW2 or something. The Jesbys took over a large but technologically second rate country, came up with a nasty crusading political movement and lots of tech innovations, and are attacking the politically and religiously divided most advanced subcontinent.
Johrom, where the Jesby are operating, is still inhabited by lizardmen of the commando-wizard Azvan's species. The cultural flavor of the main area of operation is still vaguely Hindu. The tech is changed to Steampunk -- Victorian with weirdness. The Jesby seem to be going for world domination. Magic level is generally low but some of the weird tech seems to use magic.
Jesby attitudes are like those of the 19th C British: there's themselves, the superior rabble brought from their territories in Chaos, and wogs. Wogs run from useful (Gurkha equivalents) to vermin (Boer equivalents).
In GoA Benedict throws Ganelon, who weighs at least "eighteen stone" (252 lbs) ten paces beyond Corwin, with whom he'd been fencing. Call it twenty feet. One-handed.
So, tentatively, subtract the weight of the object/10 (in pounds) from your Real Strength, and that's how far you can throw it in feet, with both hands and a serious effort. One-handed you do half as much. Multiply your STR* (Real Strength) by 1.5 for a ferocious effort -- which would leave you vulnerable for a moment.
So Benedict's Strength is (or was) about 35 and throwing Ganelon that far required a ferocious effort -- he covered himself by aiming at Corwin.
Gerard could have thrown Ganelon 30 feet one-handed without the ferocious effort.
None of the male PCs are over 200 lbs, I think, so Gerard could throw you, one-handed, about 35 feet or 60 with a real effort but still one-handed.
A STR*50 person could toss Gerard about 15 feet, one-handed, with a ferocious effort -- or 45 feet two-handed.
The next day #2's Entourage filled me in on the "Great Sea Battle".
Despite #2's appearance the forces of Amber were triumphant! Huzzah!
It would seem that the rescue of Llawella (by the Brat), and her condition,
prompted the Rebman Queen Moire to act. She sent HRH Morwyn with the
best part of their fleet to turn the tide in Amber's favor.
Sabine and I were able to spend some good quality time together while we
healed up. It made for some interesting starting and stopping (ouch! yes
that cut still hurts). When we were not otherwise engaged we made Jacob-
bullets. I worked on some variations (one was a poison infused Water
elemental, and the other was a air elemental Dum-Dum Bullets. Both were
When Sabine, Jurgen, Gertruda and I were fully mended (about a week in
Lynxia, most of a day in Amber) we gathered up all of our stuff and made
our way back to Amber to re-supply.
The situation in Chantrisport was thankfully unchanged. The Handrakes
were still hunkered down in the Capital. We waited till night fall and made
our way to the "middle" passage that Alcazar had talked about. We found it
heavily guarded by Hellmaids, their thralls, Beastmen and the assorted
zombie troops that they liked to use. The Hellmaids were on the top of a
hill screened behind a powerful magical ward/shield. The others were
outside of it and would be easily gotten rid of. I needed a distraction that
would draw the Hellmaids out from behind their protection, so we could
take them out before they would be able to raise an alarm. I ran some
options through my mind and discounted Jacob and the Brat, and decided to
trump Fineas. I told him the situation and he came up with several good
plans when Sabine piped in that Fineas' cannons would be more than enough
to take out the Shield. So we went over the ideas again and Fineas brought
the cannons and some troops through the trump and we set up the assault.
One truly wonderful thing that Fineas provided us was some Chaosian Magi-
coin-batteries. Sabine and I looked them over and nodded to each other
knowing that these would be the next things to try and make.
The ambush worked splendidly. We took all of them, possibly with a warning
being sent out. Fineas and I agreed that when I got some new information
I would trump him again for Phase Two of the operation. Fineas' would stay
behind with the survivors to fortify the position.
The other side of the gate was a vast Savannah. It took the better part of
the day to get to the next gate. Checking our guns we notice that they do
not work in this shadow. I trumped Sir John Gaunt to make a weapon
exchange. Guns for sharp silvered pointy things. The Weir and Sabine
were able to make us appear like the indigenous herbivores.
The next gate was in a stand of acacias trees. I could sense the gate and
we are able to eventually find the guarding force. It consisted of 5
Hellmaids and supporting thralls, and those damnable Razorbeaks from
Shandora. I trumped Fineas with the tactical information, and he told me
that He has a really good idea, and that we should wait for his attack and
take out the Razorbeaks and any escaping Hellmaids. I also trumped Sir
John Guant and asked for use of his "Commando" Rangers. He said that for
this mission that he would authorize it. While waiting for either Sir John
or Fineas to trump me back I got a trump call from Sir John and he sent
the rangers through. The next thing we noticed was a great big gate right
next to the Chaosian gate with maniacal troops pouring through. The
maniacal troops did a doozy on the hellmaids and we took out the
Razorbeaks before they could get away.
But of greater interest was that Fineas must of picked up some tricks from
his suspected Father. Also, he now has some more Magi-coin-batteries with
protective cases (even more fun things to manufacture).
As with before, Fineas and his troops were going to guard the rear while we
poked around on the other side of the gate.
The other side is a hellish mountain blizzard. I quickly trumped Sir John
Gaunt for cold weather supplies. After we were adequately kitted up we
made our way up the path. Around a few bends we see a rather large
structure. Using one of Sabine's constructs I was able to see several
Beastmen guarding the walls. Jurgan and Gertruda started to make us a
snow cave so we did not freeze. Once we were safe from the storm I set
about probing the structure's defenses. Older, weaker wards on the
outside, and several very strong ones on the upper center floors of the
structure. Looked like this was the place that Dara was taken to. I passed
this information on the Fineas.
Fineas told me that he needed some time to set things up, and that I should
do some more probing. Using a combination of air and earth elementals I
was able pin point the room that Dara was in. Also there were up to thirty
Hellmaids and a Chaos Logrus user protecting her.
Fineas trumps back and tells me that he had talked to Sir John Gaunt about
the situation and he had gotten the use of 30 of the elite Royal Guard, and
30 Rangers and mage's. I was to lead a force through the lower reaches of
the building and Fineas was somehow going to create a gate on the same
floor as Dara was on.
The elementals had done a good job on the lower areas and we met little
resistance. The real fight came when Fineas' troop and my troops met up
just out side of Dara's room. The Chaosian that I had detected was
blocking our way and he started to attack us with his logrus. Fineas and I
countered with our Pattern defense, and Sabine tossed some spells his way.
Fineas and I attack him; Fineas went for his knees, and I was going to
cleave his head from his shoulders. He could only block one of us and he
decided that I was the bigger threat, and about a second later he was on
the floor as Fineas removed both his legs and his head. The Hellmaids fell
back to Dara's room and one of them said something about protecting
We burst in to the room and found Dara in her bed being guarded by one
fiend and several Hellmaids. If we where to fight her we would be in as bad
of shape as her by the end of the battle. Fineas started up with his whole
Hellgram spy cover and begins to fence the fiend and demanding that they
surrender. This is a good ruse since it allowed me to extend an offer of
amnesty to her (if #2 allowed it). Fineas told her had been shot by a
Hellgram/Basilisk operative, and we were here to rescue Her. She inquired
about Aglaval, and assuming that that was the name of the Logrus user, I
told her he was dead. This seemed to please her and she told us that she
was tired of being held captive by the Hendrakes.
We offered her safe passage for her and her retinue to see #2 so that he
could approve the negotiations. I asked her about the Hellmaids and she
told us that they would need to be rescued or the Hendrakes would wipe
them out as soon as they found about her rescue. This sounds like
something that #2 was going to have to make a decision about.
The survivors of both sides of the battle leave via Fineas really neat Magi-
coin-battery gate. I am going to have to talk to him about what spell he
used to create it.
In Lynxia #2 signed off on all of negotiations. Dara would be brought back
into the family fold and be allowed the continued use/mastery of the
Hellmaids. She would not be forced to fight her family, the Hendrakes.
The Weir, Fineas, Sabine and I wondered off to get our wounds treated.
WARNING: MATH (But some things have already been calculated.)
NOTE: "STR*" means Real Strength (Strength + 30)
Runner's Build (all of the PCs) = 20 kph
Burly (Gerard), Overweight or (unhealthily) Skinny = 15 kph (get 1/2 the benefit of the 'Fast' Specialization)
Fat or Skeletal = 10 kph (can't buy 'Fast')
then add your (STR*/5) kph
then adjust the total with the Specialization: Fast (X 125% or X 150%)
So Joe Olympian's sprinting speed is 20 + 2, X 150% --- 33 kph.
Flat 'Amber' Strength yields 26kph.
Gerard's ungodly strength and burly build net him nearly 40 kph.
A hypothetical Amberite with 20 Strength (STR* 50) and 2 points in Fast nets him 45 kph -- (20 + 10) x 150%
But youse guys can sprint for hours.
JUMPING (no Specialization available, but 'Fast' helps a lot)
STANDING LONG JUMP = the square root of your STR* in meters
That's 2-3m for most mortals, 4.5m at 'Chaos' Str, 5.5m at 'Amber' Str, about 7m at STR*50. Multiply the results by .75 for 'Burly' and .5 for 'Fat' -- not that that applies to any of you. It does cut Gerard down to about 7.5m though.
RUNNING LONG JUMP : add 1/5 your running speed in kph to your SLJ distance. (This yields results almost dead-on for Shadow Earth records.)
HIGH JUMP = 1/2 your Standing Long Jump
So most Royal Guards, with ~Chaos Strength and 1 point of 'Fast' do a running long jump of about 10.5m.
An Amberite with STR* 30 ('Amber') and no specializations jumps about 11.5m. With 2 points in 'Fast' that goes up to 13.5m.
STR*50 and no specializations gets you 13m. 1 point of 'Fast' yields 14m, 2 points yields 16m.
And Gerard jumps about 15m.
In a quadripedal form, double the sprinting speed and multiply the base jump by 150%. With Royal Guard Weir that works out to about 60kph (37mph) on a sprint and a 19m running long jump.
Oh Joy, another thing to spend points on.
The True Life Adventures of Fineas of House Barimen
Prince of Amber
The days following our great victory at sea are spent on a counteroffensive, rolling up the Chanicut ports with swarms of Gerard's fanatics. To command them I had to arrange an illusion or two, but they proved remarkably pliable and we deemed it wise to expend them as quickly as possible before they caused difficulties to our other forces. Morwyn and I oversaw the initial counterattacks, but soon it was apparent that the Amber admirals could handle this duty on their own. I chose to get back to other matters after a time and returned to Amber.
In the port, we had been warehousing captured equipment and documents for study. I asked the investigating mages to see if a couple of personal defense magic items would be safely salvageable for my use. They were noncommittal, so I directed them to study the two items of my interest in great detail to check for dangerous boobytraps. They went to work and I left to speak with Sir John about my spy-sniffer concerns.
In Amber, I met with Sir John and we discussed the possibility of infiltrators from House Helgram or Gryphon having supplanted our sniffers by now. Given the unfortunate circumstances of Flora's forced breeding, I was concerned that her offspring could be insinuated into Amber. If it were me, the very first thing I would do as a chaosian is secretly kill the shapeshifter sniffers and replace them with my own fakes. To guard against this, I convinced Sir John to allow me to recruit a new one personally and set him/her to work clearing our sniffers and critical staff. Sir John gave me a letter of introduction and directions to the Weir shadow. At the earliest opportunity I planned to get this done.
Before I could get too far on my way , I received yet another trump from Thirteen. He informed me he was tracking down Dara and had encountered a sticky tactical situation that would likely require violence. I offered the use of some of my expendables and proceeded to gather four of the smaller deck cannons from the ship stranded in the ranger camp. Grabbing a few rangers for support, I trumped the lot of us to Thirteen's location and we made preparations. On a barren hil not too far away, two hellmaids, their dozen or so thralls and a score or more of beastmen were guarding a shadow path gateway. Sabine was there and informed me that they had wards up to prevent sniper fire. We discussed using my pikemen to draw them out from behind their wards and ambushing the hellmaids with ranger snipers and our cannon. After a little more discussion, Sabine pointed out that the wards did not look strong enough to stop cannon fire. I grinned. We loaded two cannon with exploding shot and two with canister and I laid the cannons in to hit the tents of the hellmaids.
When all was ready, I lit the fuses and got ready for the fun. Both rounds were hits, or at least near misses. One round made a mess of the thralls of hellmaid number one but missed her. The other appeared to have wounded hellmaid number 2. With their wards shattered, our snipers opened up and I picked up a rifle to help. The beastmen mounted a spirited attack in our direction which I blunted with my expendables. Adding a few cannon rounds into the fray, we crushed them all though it took a countercharge to catch the hellmaid before she could ride away. After the smoke cleared all the known enemy were dead and I had lost about 70 expendables. The survivors I tried to hearten by promoting them on the spot and praising their valiant effort. Thirteen and is small retinue continued on to the next shadow while I set up a defense of the gate using the cannon and my survivors.
The afternoon was spent quietly since no enemy showed up to challenge our position. I spent a little more time hiding some of our defenses and trying to make any counterattack as costly as possible. As it turns out, it was wasted effort as Thirteen soon trumped me again at yet another defended gate.
The next gate was a more serious proposition. Thirteen had identified five hellmaids and a number of support creatures hidden in trees around the gate. He sketched out their approximate placement for me and we came up with an assault plan. Since this new shadow made firearms useless, I decided to bring in my samurai. They are excellent swordsmen and superb archers, just what the situation called for. I returned to the ranger camp and gathered 250 of them for the assault. I would open a trump gate in the midst of the hellmaids and send groups of 50 samurai after each one. While the hellmaids were dealing with that, Thirteen and the weir would be shooting at them from concealment with crossbows.
Once again our attack came off without a hitch. We struck so fast the hellmaids were unable to flee or send for help. All were slain with relatively minor losses on our part. I sent our wounded back along with 100 of my samurai and again placed the rest around the gate for defense. There were a number of razorbeaks that had managed to get away and I expected a counterattack within a few hours unless we could finish our business with Dara. Thirteen a crew continued on to the next shadow to scout.
A few hours later, Thirteen called in to report he thought Dara was in a monastery in the next shadow. It was a mountainous region and the place was well defended. We decided a fast hit and run was the best way to proceed, so I gathered quite a few royal guards for the assault along with some rangers and the usual weir. Using his magic, Thirteen narrowed down her location to an acceptably small area and we struck yet again. I used another coin to power the trump gate and we poured in.
The fight was bloody and hard. A Logrus master was opposing us and cutting up our troops fairly badly. This was a no-frills assault and we simply charged in to overwhelm them with numbers. Chopping through defenders, Thirteen and I came up against the Chaos Lord that had been causing us problems. Thirteen took a swing at his face while I ducked and struck low. I hit home and completely severed his leg, which broke his concentration and allowed me to get behind him. I administered a quick coup de grace and charged into the final room. I found myself facing a pit fiend, a handful of hellmaids and a bedridden Dara. I had no doubt I would be cut to shreds if I charged in alone, so I delayed a bit, feinting against the pit fiend and spewing out accusations that he was a Helgram spy and I was here to free Dara. Lame, but it must have worked because they did not kill me before the rest of our force could get into the room.
Dara asked me why she should surrender. I answered that we were here to offer a deal to her and had enough people to take her regardless of her wishes. She thought a moment, realized I was telling the truth and capitulated under the condition I would offer her and her minions safe conduct and my personal word. I agreed. All rejoiced. We gathered our wounded, arranged for Dara to gather her peons and we gated back out, taking her to Lynxia to talk to Gerard directly.
In Lynxia, the two bedridden negotiators hammered out a deal. Dara would try to swing the hellmaids to our side and would assist us againdt all houses but Hendrake. Dara would be welcomed back to the fold and regain her position in Amber. She gave us information about what she knew of Amberite survivors of the Patternfall War. It may or may not be accurate. I am not convinced she will be trustworthy any time soon, but my disinformation ploy with our captive hellmaid should help to get her more firmly in our camp. I also intend to plant information to the Hendrakes to completely soil her reputation in their eyes. We can't have her defecting back to them after all.
The True Life Adventures of Fineas of House Barimen
Prince of Amber
Upon emerging from my chamber for the morning, one of the castle pages presented me with a letter, lightly perfumed. At first I thought perhaps Gwyneth was up to something, but when I opened it I discovered to my delight that it was from Ky-Tung, an old paramour of mine. We had pursued a long but intermittent relationship over a number of years when I was wandering about with various merchant vessels. Her family was minor nobility and ran some of the outfits I had taken employment with in my pre-Amber days. I had no doubt that her current interest was sparked by learning of my elevation to the royal family, but we had last parted on excellent terms and I looked forward to seeing her again.
The note requested a meeting and I sent the page scurrying back with an affirmative reply. I suggested we take a picnic and spend the day in the grove. My recent concerns about security came back to whisper in my ear again, so I arranged for a couple of the more discreet guards to shadow our meeting to make sure nothing untoward happened. I also set a couple to keep an eye on the actors we had screened to be sure they were not blabbing all over town. So many concerns and so little time to have fun. When the appointed hour approached, I met Ky-Tung in the great hall, gave her a brief tour of the less sensitive areas of the castle and then escorted her out to the grove.
Suffice to say the afternoon was pleasureable and I sure did not hurt my reputation with the watching guards. Between bouts, she and I discussed how our lives were changing and I more or less alluded to the fact that I intended to boost her family's standing in the realm. She was pleased and I secured a promise from her to keep her ear to the ground on my behalf amongst the lesser houses. Eventually we returned to the castle and bid each other farewell for the time being. It was time to get back to work.
I made preparations to return to Hunac and continue the work there. I stopped on the way to give instructions to my samurai to be on alert. Gerard had asked that I keep myself available for an impending fleet action and I had some ideas about possibly capturing a chaos lord for questioning. If I could catch one on board a ship, I wanted to see if I could somehow get him to involuntarily go through a trump gate to a place of my choosing. The momentum of a sailing ship should theoretically carry anyone on board right into the gate if it were placed in the path of the ship. I intended to trump such a ship to the practice field near Arden where my samurai would be waiting to swarm them. I did not tell my samurai precisely what to expect, but gave instructions for them to obey the resident rangers and be prepared for imminent action.
My next task was to find out how Thirteen was making out. While I had been with Ky-Tung, he had headed back into shadow presumably to learn more about the fate of Dara. I was keen to resolve that situation myself, so I tried to contact him via trump. He seemed unwilling to answer, so I did not push it. Unicorn knows how annoying an incoming trump call can be when involved in a delicate task, such as fighting for one's life. I waited a few minutes and was about to give him another try when I got the tingle of an incoming trump call myself. I could sense it was Gerard, so I opened my mind and took it.
"It is time to do battle boy!" Gerard grinned. He pulled me through to his ship where we got down to the last minute business of planning the battle. Morwyn from Rebma was present and was commanding a large portion of the fleet, thoughtfully provided by Queen Moire in support of Gerard. Gerard took the center and I was given command of one of the wings. We seemed to slightly outgun the expected enemy and Gerard was confident that the various family members who were being pulled in would tip the balance in our favor.
Gerard and Morwyn both knew what they were doing with regard to fleet actions. I knew the theory but has never commanded more than a single ship before. I discussed the situation with my senior commanders and we decided to concentrate our firepower as much as possible on a single ship at a time. I intended to use a lot of Pattern tricks to screw up enemy efficiency as much as possible and wanted to try the trump gate trick as soon as an appropriate target was identified. Key to my success would be not making myself an obvious target for enemy sharpshooters. I found a suitable position at a lower deck gun portal where my visibility was good enough to survey a reasonable part of the action and set up a couple or runners to convey messages back and forth to the captain. I laid out a few key trumps to facilitate communication and contacted my mother once again for some extra energy to use in the event I needed to open the gate.
It seemed like the battle took forever to finally get going. I decided to have a little fun and started causing havoc with the enemy line of battle by causing collisions, breaking rigging, causing freak bursts of wind or putting a ship "in irons". I seemed to be having some success at this as their formation became disarrayed, allowing my ships to keep up an orderly barrage on select enemy ships while their fire became less coordinated. I began to sense more and more Logrus being used and I tried to counter what I could. Torianna and Jacob began to take a more direct approach and before long the sorcery was flying fast and furious. Both sides began using expoding munitions, so I switch my tactics to causing premature enemy detonations and managed to destroy a number of vessels by igniting their magazines.
My end of the battle appeared to be the most orderly. The enemy had determined which ship Gerard was on and had been inflicting great punishment upon it. Morwyn's wing seemed to be doing well except for those areas where Torianna had been most active. Where she had been, both sides had suffered a swath of burning destruction. She had changed the character of the battle and both sides took heavy losses. In the end, we proved the stronger and the Chanicutt fleet was crushed. As they began to break apart, I located one nearby that had indications of a Chaos Lord on board. I summoned the trump gate directly in front of the ship, but it took just long enough to form that the chaosian saw it coming and fled the ship before it plunged into the gate.
I checked in with the rangers a few minutes later and chucked to learn the ship grounded in tha practice field as intended and my samurai had swarmed it like ants. No mercy was shown, but the ship was taken with all its cannons intact and with some intelligence on board. Not too shabby, and with luck the trump gate might be explained away as Flora's doing.
In the aftermath of the battle we drew near to Gerard's ship. He was severely wounded and was being evacuated to Lynxia for attention. Morwyn and I were left to organize the survivors, so we rallied the remaining ships and began finishing off cripples and salvaging what intelligence we could. I was able to obtain a couple samples of the mana coins the chaosians had been using, so I supplied one to my mother as thanks (knowing she would go hard to work duplicating the things) and kept one for emergency use. She was properly appreciative.
The True Life Adventures of Fineas of House Barimen
Prince of Amber
I began thinking about the best use of Thirteen's captured hellmaid between bouts of trying to find out how Flora was doing. Part of our problem is we are so severely outnumbered by the enemy. Our strength is that we are not fractured into overtly competing cabals, at least not yet. Our best strategy would seem to be an effort to set the houses of chaos upon one another, thus diluting their efforts and possibly gaining some allies. From what intelligence we had garnered so far, I determined that Hendrake would be the most easily swayed to our cause. They seemed the least devious and probably were easier for me to directly manipulate than the others, simply because I was already directly opposing them.
My recent attempt upon the life of Dara could potentially be made to look like treachery from one of the other houses. I was reasonably sure I was not identified as the sniper and we had not used Pattern during the fight and our subsequent escape. Enough Logrus was being thrown around Chandora that I thought it reasonable to manufacture a story to leak to the chaosians and have it believed. Our captured hellmaid seemed a convenient avenue for spreading disinformation so I began to work on an idea. I settled upon a plan to fake an interrogation of another captured chaosian from a different house. It would need to be conducted in such a way that it would be believable to the hellmaid. We would need some insight on chaos from Flora for this to work. I resolved to ask her to compose believable responses to a list of questions I had prepared. Secondly, it would take place just out of human earshot of the hellmaid but within hearing distance of a shapeshifter. I had no doubt she was listening to everything she could while in captivity and I planned to use her natural ego and contempt for Amber against her.
An actor would need to be chosen, one who could properly mimic any accent of chaos we chose and who could give a realistic performance of someone breaking under torture. The accent we could probably get from Flora and there were a number of very excellent actors within Amber who would no doubt consider it the pinnacle of their career to perform such a service for the crown. I decided to enlist Thirteen's help again in picking the actor and performing the fake interrogation.
The story would be that agents of Amber were observing the battle in Chandora and had witnessed a chaosian shoot Dara. Of course we were interested in learning why this was the case and who was responsible as we had hopes of welcoming Dara back into the fold and wanted her alive. We would have the actor offer several obviously false responses under the simulated torture before apparently breaking and giving the answer we wished. We would blame the attempt on an agreement between Helgram and another house, possibly Gryphon to stymie Hendrake's advance against Amber. Since Dara was obviously a factor in the Hendrake advance and was despised as a half breed, she was targeted for assassination. We would then simulate an experiment for a new lethal poison and "kill off" the captured spy.
Thirteen and I spent some considerable time rousting the actors from their beds and arranging secretive auditions of the part. For the most part our choices were enthusiastic, especially when I offered a substantial cash reward. I felt some tended to overact the torture sequence, but we settled on one who captured the subtle nuances of the misery of torture without going over the top. We brought him in and were able to get a little assistance in the script and some voice coaching from a very tired looking Flora.
Our long preparations seemed to pay off. When it came time for the performance, I thought our actor did marvelously. I actually enjoyed acting out the torture and interrogation. I could tell Thirteen had some considerable experience in these matters and he added some very realistic touches. I resolved to reward this actor with my personal patronage as long as he kept his mouth shut after the fact. I would really hate to lose such a fine thespian due to unwise bragging in a tavern somewhere.
I learned more of chaos from Flora during our collaberation. It seemed a nasty place. It also became apparent that a breeding program had taken place and we should be on the watch for infiltrators able to take Pattern, or at least chaosians resistant to it. More food for thought. How many castle servants were what they seemed? I would need to talk to Sir John about it, after I figure out a way to make sure Sir John is himself. So many possible complications!
Cry-Havoc --Log Nine
"The Prodigal Daughter"
Torianna, Jacob, Fineas
In the aftermath of the great sea battle a great mop up begins. Morwyn and Fineas decide to press a counterattack and hit the enemy staging ports before they can rebuild. Luckily, most of them are lightly defended with the Chanicutt
forces in disarray. Gerard's fanatics need to be used up before they cause mischief, so they are expended in the various assaults. To command them, Fineas obtains an illusion from Sabine making him look and sound like Gerard to the unknowing fanatics. The assaults begin and meet with good success. In the meantime, a chaosian watcher has been detected and Torianna and Jacob are enlisted to track him down. They follow through shadow as far as they can before losing the trail in a crossroads shadow. Jacob wheedles another trump from Torianna, this time of Zariel his elemental servant. Jacob heads back to rest in Spa while Torianna goes to work on trumps.
Thirteen is hanging around the medical facilities, casually working on some enchanted bullets when Gerard is brought in from the battle. Gerard took a massive wooden splinter through his liver. He looks to be in pretty bad shape, but starts getting a number of concerned visitors to ease his recovery. Satisfied that Gerard is not about to snuff it, Thirteen returns to his endeavors to create air-elemental charged bullets and toxic water elemental bullets. He bores of this after a time and gets hold of his favorite travelling companions to go Dara hunting. Gertruda, Jurgen and Sabine join him on his foray to find the arch traitor. Using the information gleaned from captives, Thirteen comes upon a guarded portal leading to the shadows Dara is believed to be recovering in. Two Hellmaids are accompanied by their boy-toys, beastmen and assorted uglies.
Fineas goes to the repository for recovered and captured gear to see what may be discovered. A couple of defensive magic items catch his fancy, so he asks if they can be closely examined to determine if they may be put into service safely. Mages go to work and Fineas returns to confer with the captains and admirals of the fleet. Admiral Strake is the senior surviving commander so
Fineas places the Amberite portion of the fleet under his command with orders to cooperate with Morwyn and the Rebman fleet. Paranoia has been working at the corners of Fineas' mind and he decides to pay a visit to Sir John to discuss some additional security measures. Meeting with Sir John, Fineas raises concerns about the possibility of shapeshifters infiltrating Amber and
proposes bringing in a fresh "sniffer" to clear the castle and town, starting with the existing sniffers.
Jacob investigates the possibility of binding special purpose elementals for a bit without a conclusion. He sends Zariel to find Nelson while he soaks in the mud baths. After a time he emerges and decides to trump Fineas to discuss the tantric magic threat. Fineas offers few suggestions, so Jacob contacts Kelamon for help in finding a "life" mage to seek out Hunac entry points. Kelamon
eventually recommends talking to the local Hunac mages for help in that arena. Jacob returns to Hunac to do so.
Torianna spends time in Lynxia producing the trump of Zariel and spends some time learning how to render water elemental trumps as well. Once finished, she pays a visit to her father Gerard while he recuperates. She gradually informs him that she was allowed to attune to the jewel of Rebma by Queen Moire on her last visit. Gerard does not seem overly concerned and decides that she should also attune to the Jewel of Judgement given his close call with death. Eager to please (and grab more power for herself), Torianna agrees and is told to contact Sir John for access to the safe in which it is held. She decides to trump Sir John.
Thirteen surveils the hellmaids and determines the best position to take them out. He wants to take out the hellmaids first and deal with the beastmen afterwards but the hellmaids are well protected in the middle of the camp. The camp appears warded with spells, apparently to ward off snipers and infiltrators. Getruda is of the opinion that they need to be lured out of the protected area and ambushed outside the wards. Thirteen trumps Fineas for advice and the two discuss a lure for getting the hellmaids out. It is decided
to use some of Fineas' expendables armed with pikes to draw the enemy into an ambush. Rangers are to be used as the ambushing force. Fineas gathers his men along with four deck cannons captured from the grounded enemy ship. The ambush is set and the bait is put into position.
The initial plan called for luring out the hellmaids with the expendables, but it quickly changed when Sabine brought up the likelihood that cannon would be able to overpower the protective wards easily. Two of the cannon were loaded with exploding shells while the other two were loaded with canister for the beast men. Fineas personally aims the cannon at the two hellmaid tents and opens fire. One hellmaid is instantly wounded, but the other is unscathed and tries to crawl out of direct line of fire. The beastmen erupt and try to charge the cannon. Fineas calls the charge for his pikemen to intercept them and melee ensues. A group of beastmen try to flank but get cut to shreds by cannister fire. Soon the Amberites succeed in sniping off the hellmaids and finish off the beastmen. Losses amongst Fineas' expendables extremely high, but thirty percent survive and are given field promotions to become noncoms for the other expendables in Arden. Thirteen and companions proceed through the gate to continue seeking Dara while Fineas fortifies the gate to hold it.
In Hunac Jacob meets with Itzamna to discuss the tantric magic threat. Jacob decides that by manipulating local festivals, it may be possible to instigate enough debauchery to influence the break in point. Itzamna informs him that naturally occurring weak spots are too many and varied to predict the entry point, so it looks like artificial enhancement will be needed. Jacob decides to hellride to think things over (he is a bit strange in that way) and he takes off again. Stopping along the way to nowhere in particular, he summons a buzzard of his desire and sends it off meet himself at some future time and place for no particular reason. He then continues riding around in circles musing about how and where to instigate orgies. After a time he decides that a "woodstock" type scenario away from inhabited areas would fit the bill and he heads back to Hunac to find a suitable location.
Torianna trumps Sir John and checks for eavesdroppers. Sure enough, Gwynneth is listening in and Torianna chases her off before speaking with Sir
John. She joins him in Amber and geta access to the safe where she retrieves the Jewel of Judgement. She quickly attunes to it and spends a few hours practicing weather control with it. She decides to take a break and goes to have a chat with Gwynneth about her spying. As all such meetings, veiled threats are made by Torianna and Gwynneth is forced to back down. Ironically Torianna learns her spy in the fishtank was discovered and blinded by Gwynneth. The discussion finally turns to Llewella and her condition. On the insult to the royal family of Rebma (and Amber) they are in mutual agreement for a change. The discussion becomes a bit more cordial past that point as they discuss what the repercussions will be to Llewella's mutilation.
Thirteen finds himself in an open plain with the next discernable gate some 40 miles away. Bison like creatures are in evidence, so the group disguises
themselves to fit in with the local surroundings before proceeding. Gunpowder no longer works. They send their weapons back to Amber through a trump and
continue on with crossbows and swords. Eventually the plains give way to a wooded area and careful study shows a hidden defence force guarding the next
gateway. Five hellmaids and a number of support creatures including razorbeaks are guarding the area from camoflaged positions. Realizing that passing gate while leaving the hellmaids intact would raise an alarm, he decides another battle is in order. Contacting Sir John through Kelamon, Thirteen reports
his situation before getting hold of Fineas again.
Fineas speaks with Thirteen about the tactical situation and decides his skilled samurai are the ticket here. Fineas tells Thirteen to wait for his attack, then pick off as many hellmaids as he can. Fineas trumps his mother and secures a mana coin to power a trump gate. He then gathers his samurai, explains to them that they are about to attack demonic creatures who enthrall men and outlines the tactical postion to them. He assigns fifty samurai to each hellmaid, then opens the trump gate in the midst of the hellmaid defenses. The samurai pour through and together with Thirteen's people the enemy is wiped out. Fineas sends the wounded and dead back through the gate and positions the surviving samurai to guard the newly seized gate.
Jacob trumps Torianna again and asks for her help in finding a suitable entry point for the tantric gate. She is less than pleased at his timing and blows
him off. Jacob is annoyed and trumps Gerard continuously until he answers, grabbing Jacob by the throat until he is recognized. Jacob complains loudly about the lack of support he is getting and vents on Gerard for several minutes. Gerard has him explain in detail what he is looking for and after hearing of Jacob's plan, Gerard gives him a trump of Holrune for assistance and tells him to contact the Eye of the Sun in Hunac to amke arrangements. Jacob is rather annoyed that Gerard did not back him up with Torianna and leaves muttering to himself.
After an exhausting day, Torianna sleeps for several hours before awakening to work on the trump of Griv she had promised. When finished, she tries trumping
Jacob back but has no luck reaching him. She decides to return to Rebma to check on Llewella's condition. Ariving, she first speaks to Morwyn before arranging audience with Moire. She learns that Llewella's regeneration has already begun but that mentally Llewella has locked herself away in a trance and no one has been able to talk to her yet. There is some concern for her sanity.
After the fight at the gate, Thirteen and his intrepid companions go through the second gate to discover what lies beyond. They emerge in a very high altitude
moutainous region a few miles from what appears to be a secluded monastery. Healing magic seems to work well here and with careful study and concealment, Thirteen senses a variety of magical wards around the place. A number of beastmen are seen guarding the walls. Given the density of interior defenses, Thirteen believes he has found Dara.
Waiting for the next summons from Thirteen, Fineas occupies himself setting the defenses of the second gate. After a time he contacts Sir John again and sets the meeting with the weir to recruit a new sniffer. An olefactorily excellent recruit is sought, one that does not necessarily have to have any martial skills.
Finally he hears from Thirteen that the likely location of Dara has been found.
Jacob checks on Zariel's progress in locating Nelson. So far no luck. He then trumps Holrune and discusses what he needs in the way of help in Hunac. Holrune undertakes the task, leaving Jacob to seek gold to pay his expenses for more mercenary troops. He spends a fair amount of time locating both.
Torianna researches methods to attack the mana coins of her opponents and to likewise protect her own stash. A couple of spells are created, one to hide her own and one to release the energy of an opponents coin in spectacular fashion. She survives her experiments. A pity she duplicated the efforts of a number of other Rebman's before asking if any such work had already been done.
Thirteen undertakes more aggressive surveillance using elementals. They report a force of twenty to thirty hellmaids and at least one Chaos Lord. The exact area of interest is identified and the attack is planned. An overwhelming strike force of 100 rangers, wizards and weir are to be trumped in to a point closest to the defended area. The attack will be led by Fineas with Thirteen in close support. The forces are gathered, a pair of Rebman mana coins are garnered from Morwyn and the gate is opened by Fineas. The rangers pour through and instant havoc ensues. The fight takes a few minutes, working its way through halls and being opposed by Logrus tendrils from the Chaos
Lord. Eventually both Fineas and Thirteen reach him simultaneously. Thirteen goes high, Fineas strikes low. The result is a Chaos Lord flopping on the ground with a severed leg. Fineas administers a coup de grace and turns to face the final defenses. Dara is there bedbound guarded by a pit fiend and a few hellmaids. Fineas half-heartedly engages the pit fiend shouting something about a Helgram spyas a ruse. Fineas calls for their surrender and a brief negotiation takes place. In return for safe conduct to negotiate directly with Gerard, Dara agrees to surrender. She and her retinue are escorted through the gate and conducted to the presence of Gerard after he is warned of what has transpired. A deal is struck with Dara for her help in defending Amber against the other houses using her hellmaids in return for her honorable return to the family fold.
Where they are now:
Fineas and Thirteen are in Lynxia
Jacob is in shadow
Torianna is in Rebma
After all of the necessary bits and pieces of the plan had came together
Sabine, Hans, Franz, Gertruda, Jurgen, and myself headed off under the
cover of darkness. The other five kept me moving while I set about trying
to find out which shadow gate Dara had fled through. As we were making
our way around the city I was able to find most of the paths used by the
Hendrake's into and out of Shandora. Several had been used recently, so
there was no good way to decide which one was used to haul her out to
Near one of the gates I noticed something amiss. There was something of
Logrus nearby. Gertruda and I spied it as it moved in the tree tops. It
seemed to be tracking us, but then at the last moment it veered off. I had
everybody move to defensible positions, and waited for it to make it's move.
I tried to lure it in buy "painting" a deer with Necro magic. Soon their was a
great scream and thrashing coming from the position that Hans and Franz
had taken. I rushed over to help them. I found them both badly mutilated
by the large bat....at which point it struck me. A vicious battle ensued.
Both of us were evenly matched, and for some reason it seemed to have a
slight grin on its face. We pounded on each other for what seemed minutes
when Jurgen, and Gertruda joined in the fray. When they brought their
full force to bare, the bat thing didn't stand a chance.
With the battle over I had Jurgen and Gurtruda gather up the bodies of
Hans and Franz while I activated a trump and all of us went back to Amber.
The bat thing seemed to have poisoned his spikes because shortly after I
got to Amber and was explaining things to Col. Sir Bors I started to feel
dizzy, and passed out onto the floor....
....Minutes later I was awake again. Sabin and the castle mage Chango had
identified the poison that brought me down and cast a spell through his
antitoxin amulet to neutralize it. They moved on to Gertruda and Jurgen,
who had also collapsed. Hans and Franz's bodies had already been removed
from the Chamber, and the Royal Guard had trussed up the Bat thing just
like a Holiday goose, taking due care to avoid the thing's many poisoned spikes.
We took it (him?) down to the Dungeon to a nearby cell to the Hellmaid
Marayka. Col. Sir Bors and I start in on him in very subtly at first but soon
we have to get forceful with him. First we were able to find out his name:
Alcazar. He was a minor logrus user/prince(?) of the House Hendrake. We
were able to confirm a great deal of what Princess Floramel had told us
several nights ago. But we did find out a few new nuggets of information.
-Dara was on the outs with House Hendrake and was sent to prove her
loyalty to them in Shandora. This loyalty test was ended by Fineas' good
-She had been given the boot by her Father's House (Hellgram) as well.
Both cases due to the aid she had provided to Oberon during the Pattern
-She had been taken to a Shadow of healing via the centermost of the
-He (Alcazar) had been trying to scout out a way into Chantrisport to try
and rid us of our one toehold in the Shadow.
-And the last bit was the most enlightening. Chinaway Hendrake had
decided that the new way that they were going to gate into Hunac was to
"love" there way in. It was to be some sort of great Tantric love fest that
would use some of the weak points in Hunac to bridge the gap. They would
first start with a Necro feint and go straight into Tantric city.
After we had milked the last bit of information from Alcazar, we had him
put into small ventilated briefcase cage for safe keeping. Col. Sir Bors
ordered Jurgen, Gertruda and myself to the Kingdoms Hospital Shadow (lynxia)
to quickly recuperate before heading out on the next faze of the Operation. I
made sure the information about Hunac Tantric attack was passed on to
Jacob and Fineas.
Shortly after getting to the Hospital Shadow (a weird place with young men
running around in short Toga's). #2 made his grand entrance with a large
beam of wood protruding from his gut. I hope that the "great sea battle"
went better than #2 looked. If not, looks like I made the right choice.