It’s 3am at The Cauldron. I say goodbye to Vinnik and teleport to the Douglas Estate in Sweetwater to fetch Amy. It’s good to see her after six months apart. She’s becoming quite an attractive young woman, but I quickly push those thoughts from my mind, remembering Willard’s council on the matter. She’s more than excited to see me, as is Biter. We stay up the rest of the night talking and she tells me about her adventures and stories about Salithius. She even wakes Aija, one of her new friends, so that my existence can no longer be questioned.
Abby won’t be joining us for this adventure because she’s pregnant and will be marrying a fella named Roan the eldest son of an affluent Sweetwater family. Roan thinks that the child is his but Willard begs to differ, although not publicly.
July 4, 1136 @ 10am
Another teleportation brings Jon, Amy and I to my bedroom at The Cauldron, the place I’ve called home for the past six months. It’s been wonderful to have a safe place of my own where I can be with my thoughts, free from petty distractions.
Vinnik loves it here. The caldera is a huge expanse in which he can explore and hunt. For the first time in years, he’s not complaining about being my watchdog. He spends most of his time circling the island and surrounding fresh-water lake on the constant updrafts. On occasion he flies to nearby Sweetwater Island, for some excitement. We’ve also made regular trips together to visit Jacob in Quashie.
The silver chalice I found in Aerunda’s lair has proven to be an interesting toy, leading to many scintillating scenarios while partying on Jacob’s boat. One of these days I’m hoping to turn the chalice’s powers into a tool instead of a toy.
The two magical staves I found have also proved interesting. The first is carved of Snakewood and gives it’s owner the ability to cast Light at will, as well as Magic Missile with a limited number of charges. I gave it to Jon. The second staff is carved of Yew and gives it’s holder the ability to Detect Magic at will, as well as limited charges of Hold Person and Hold Monster. I’m keeping this staff for myself. I Identified the staves’ powers and took them to Robin, a Bastion witch, for re-charging.
The last item I found was a fascinating magical music box. It’s a tiny metal mechanical music box with a turn-handle but no dancer. After Willard studied it for a bit he looked quite intrigued and told me that I should probably not turn the handle. Most likely, it’s function is to capture the soul of the person who turns the handle. It may prove useful one day.
Amy, Jon and I wander The Cauldron, while testing out the silver chalice in the process. We discuss the task at hand at length as we wander the caves. Salithius will be formidable but his insane behavior belies a mind not ideal for effective wizardry.
Later that evening, after smoking some of Jacob’s pipeweed and relaxing in the study, Willard contacts me for a status update. I tell him that Abby and Linnfard will be unavailable for our mission to dispose of Salithius, a fact which concerns me much more than it does Willard. He motivates me by telling me that if “someone” can’t manage such a task then that “someone” may not be fit to be on the council of the Servants of the Order of Conscious Influence. He also suggests that one way to get closer to Sal would be to get Jon to contact his guild for information. Willard out.
July 5, 1136 @ 8am
The familiarity of my old room at Willard’s mansion is comforting. Mabel comes rushing upstairs upon hearing our voices and is greeted with hugs and a fatty, rolled by Amy’s deft fingers. Mabel beams and tucks it away for later and rushes us downstairs to cook us breakfast and catch up. Jon heads out to make contact with the guild and buy some groceries for Mabel. Amy and I spend some time in Willard’s study looking for more information on Sal.
Our findings: Salithius is a wizard who has a penchant for young boys and romanticizes nautical pursuits. He is a vain and insecure asshole. Necromancy has always been one of his many interests but in recent years he has stopped all other studies and turned all of his attention to this dark school of magic. Maybe he’s looking to prolong his own life? Maybe he needs to communicate with, or bring back, someone who has died? Maybe he’s just insane? There isn’t much history on Sal prior to him joining the council other than his appearance as a young man circa 930, over 200 years ago. Willard, as head of the council, has warned Sal to stop his experiments years ago because of unacceptable mortality rates. The warnings were ignored time and time again. This time, due to his turning the majority of the 20,000 citizens of Egersund into zombies, his death has been mandated by the council and assigned to me. That’s a lot of pressure, but I’m comforted by the thought that Willard would not send me on an impossible task.
Jon gets back from wandering Bastion and tells us that the guild knows about Mother Jana being in Sweetwater. He also tells us that Sal’s boy toy is somewhere across the ocean. The guild needs more time to get information and Jon plans to check in again tomorrow. It would be very useful if the guild could tell us Sal’s residences all over the world so we can have a better chance of finding him and tracking him if he manages to escape our inevitable first encounter. So far we only know of one base in Tickle Bay and another near Egersund.
Mabel makes a delicious dinner as we discuss possible tactics and scenarios when a courier arrives at the front door with a letter for Jon. It says that Rispin is one of Sal’s boy toys and that he resides in the coastal town of Choisy-le-Roi on the Esonne continent. I’ve only seen Esonne on a map and don’t really know what to expect. This lead from the guild is much appreciated, as long as it’s accurate information, and not a trap. The familiar untrusting thoughts creep into my head once more. Seems like another vacation is over. Time to do some real work. Ironically the tables have turned. No longer are we the ones being hunted. We decide to gear up and leave for Esonne in the morning.
Session ends on July 5, 1136 @ 11pm