Nation of Legends

Into the Shadow and Fog 2
everyone wants a unicorn for their bday

Searching for the lost crew members, the heroes crossed into the forest. Following the tracks of the men who had been dragged away, they heard cries of anguish and alarm coming all around. A Dryad emerged from one of the trees, warning of an attack by strange creatures, called Spriggans, that has killed her sisters and were destroying her grove.

While the Dryad did not live much longer, the heroes hurried to find her grove. Several of the so called Spriggans, small men with brambles and thorns growing from their bodies, were burning other dryads, captured the crew and even a unicorn. A furious battle ensued, in which they discovered that Spriggans could increase in size, and despite the aid of some Quicklings, the heroes routed the creatures and freed the captives.

The Unicorn, Palombier, was enormously grateful for their arrival and rescue and explained that these were servants claiming to be from the Mother who had brought fell magic upon the forest. He also referred to Grimmroot as one of the ‘forsaken’, but did not offer much clarity as to why. He also explained that the Nari caravan members would have fled to one of the nearby Fey Mounds. After pleas to both mount and have Palombier join their party the unicorn said he would aid the crew in getting to safety but could not join them. The sole living Dyrad, Fehwin, explained where they could find the feymound and hopefully rescue the Nari.

On their way to the Fey Mound Lomdi became aware that they were being followed. It turned out that their pursuer was one of the forest’s guardian Giants. Introducing himself as Vinroot, he explained that he was trying to rescue the Nari who had been taken at the fey mound when it was overwhelmed. These dark creatures were being brought over from somewhere he called The First World. The evil creatures served a monsterous spider-woman named Tenzekil. Their goal seemed to be the corruption of the World Tree, a holy site and original gateway from which he said all Fey entered the world. The fey mounds also served as lesser gateways which is why the Spriggans and other creatures sought them out.

Making haste, the party found that they fey mound was overrun by not just the Spriggans but also Myceloids, mushroom humanoids, devouring the captive Nari. Lomdi wasted no time throwing himself into the midst of the creatures devouring his kin and Grim hurried to join. Toonan and Vinroot set upon the Spriggans and after a brutal conflict they slew all of the foul creatures.

The grateful Nari explained that their caravan, which numbered close to a hundred, had been beseiged while the attempted to navigate the mist laden forests. Under such an attack the fox-people scattered into the forest hoping to reach protection at the fey mounds. One member claimed to have found where the mists were originating from, a series of waterfalls called Dead Man’s Drop. Vinroot explained where this was and offered to take the survivors to an enclave where the other forest guardians were gathering to try and make a stand against this gathering evil.

Into the Shadow and Fog

The heroes spent some well deserved downtime in Starfall after successfully defending the city. Each pursued their own interests but all were haunted and curious about the origins of their mythic nature and the shared power with their attacker.

Signs continued to come to them pointing each toward the Forest of Dancing Shadows. The forests already mystical and strange reputation had only become more sinister as tales of an unnatural mist had settled into the forest.

Taking passage with a riverboat crew the heroes traveled slowly upriver finding that forest was indeed shrouded in an unnatural fog. This paired with the dense canopy of its towering trees gave the forest an otherworldly quality.

Coaxing their guides with liberal payment, the boat turned west along The Shimmering River heading deeper into the forest. Well away from any well known trade route or other path the boat proceeded slowly passing strange and profane structures hewn from the trees. After close to a second week of travel the party found signs of a battle with scorched and burnt vegetation close to the shoreline.

Going ashore and following the trail left by the running battle a clearing was discovered with two strange plants and several enormous seed pods. Closer inspection revealed that Nari corpses were suspended in the seed pods and two huge Moonflowers sprung into attack. While terrible and strange the plants proved a near match after striking down Toonan before hacked and frozen to pieces. Liberating the corpses Lomdi performed death rites for his fellow Nari.

Electing not to further investigate the area the heroes returned to the boat to rest only to discover the vessel ashore downstream and the crew missing. Small blood spatters covered that deck amongst nearly a dozen thorny, burr-covered, darts.

Alone and with no certain direction, the heroes will need to decide where to forge their path next.

The first steps

The All Thing had begun, the great astrological event that comes every 5 years. Generations ago, the great races first met under this auspicious occasion. The All Thing has now evolved into an event of games, celebration, and political posturing. Champions come to show their might and each nation carefully measures the strength of their rivals.

Each of the heroes were drawn to this even either by curiosity or duty having gained some experience as adventurers but only just becoming aware of their greater potential. Upon arriving, each were sought out by Altrua representatives to meet with the lord mayor. When they arrived at the his estate they found that it was in fact the blind princess Kies Osen who had summoned them.

To their disbelief, she explained that each member summoned was marked by destiny with great power beyond any living individual. This power in turn would be needed to respond to a great threat that she was only able to hint at with her prophetic dream.

the mother bleeds the worlds veins
life born in deaths embrace.
the children bite the mothers breats
the fathers bane grows again
only in pain and blood can the land be born
one face hides true desire
one fears what rises anew
one seeks a tie that binds
one cannot be without another
4 parts to the whole
all paths lead to the worlds heart
without the gathering light, darkness grow

This encounter awakened the mythic quality in each of the heroes shaking them to their foundations and thrilling them in equal measure. The princess implored the heroes to offer aid to the Altrua though they could offer little in the way of help. Setting out into the night each sought a different path to discovering what the mysterious threat may be and test their new found powers.

Toonan sought out the wizard Toren Burcht who was presiding over the Drag’o’ghen tournament and made a last minute save of the Altruan team. Both Lomdi Lo Bodhi and Grimmroot Bitterleaf participated in grand melees and while they did not win, they certainly made a name for themselves with admirable performances. Mathago took the most direct path searching for information in Starfall’s foreign quarter and making short work of some Garsh thugs and draining one of their minds.

The all, through various means, came to discover that there had been a mysterious gang of Garsh whom had taken over a city block without making any effort to exploit it. After checking the building briefly the heroes decided a direct approach was in order and assaulted the the hideout. One of the gang was present and fought ferociously but was slain under their onslaught. Immediately after dying the creature reverted to it’s natural form revealing itself to and Aranea, a magical spider beast. There was also a map in the hideout detailing locations of major delegations attending the All Thing.

The heroes took this information to the Lord Mayor and Princess and deliberated what action to take next. Each argued their feelings about what to do next but with few clues and little understanding of the ultimate motives of the creatures a clear strategy was difficult. The Princess finally suggest that she could serve as bait with the heroes laying in wait to discover and prevent the harm that was surely inevitable. Reluctantly they all agreed seeing not clearer path before them.

As the final day of the All Thing began dignitaries and enormous crowds assembled for the great boat race Naumachia. Each contestant would declare whom they raced for and where they called home. During this procession the Captain of the ship Mother’s Milk declared that they raced for their Mother who had sent an emissary. The creature that emerged from the hold was and enormous Drider named Kol’thogh. She declared that the Mother had sent her children to teach them all fear and that they would consume them all and grow unstoppable.

Not waiting an instant longer the heroes leaped into battle, fearlessly charging the spider creature who attacked both the innocent crowd and charged recklessly towards the princess. To make matters worse a titanic Ogre Spider burst from the hull of the ship and made a seemingly unstoppable charge towards the nobility.

All of these hideous beasts were no match however to the gathered strength of four mythic heroes and after a brief but furious battle the emerged victorious. Their success was not with cost as several innocent bystanders were slain in the crossfire and swirling melee. Regardless of this, the contribution of the heroes was seen as a blessing and each was regaled a champion.

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