Invisible Chains

Chapter Sixteen
Flight through the Fade

The group engages the ogre, during the battle Kynedrin is knocked into the wall, Crastis manages to stabalise the dwarf, but is menaced by the ogre soon after, thankfully it is knocked over by a large attack. Riordan manages to cut out one of the ogre's heart just before Ardal does the same, killing the beast. Suffering a lot of damage during the previous fights, the group takes a moment to recuperate. Pelekor climbs on top of the pedestal and poos out the three gems. This causes Killian and Crastis to faint, Killian is soon after woken up by Riordan. Meanwhile Pelekor shifts the gems round the pedestal until the red portal opens. The whole group then goes through, with Pelekor dragging Crastis and Kynedrin with his poo smeared hands. Killian goes last contemplating taking the gems, before deciding to take them later.

Once through, the group is faced with a path roofed over by rotted dead trees. Crastis wakes up at this point, seeing Pelekor dragging her with his poo hands the elf promptly faints again. the group takes a moment to awaken and fix up the injured members of their party, with Kynedrin and Crastis waking up at this point. Crastis is awoken by Killiuan rubbing her romantically, seeing the mute she attempts to punch him and misses, seeing her aggrivation Killian takes a step back.

Leading the way down the path, the guards and Fabre spot something ahead, and they ask Riordan to come forward, what they all see is a large clearing with 12 green shields holding people within them. Riordan then brings the three mages forward asking them what they are. Kadrial explains that they are like a spider's flies, wrapped and awaiting to be feasted on later. The four, plus Riordan and the guards, approach the shields tentatively. The moment he steps into the clearing Kadrial begins to disappear, commenting that the demon must be on her way, he wishes the group luck before vanishing. Crastis performs some experimentation on them, she finds them to be thin and feel like glass, they also seem to be impervious to harm both physical and magical. At the same Pelekor comes forward and performs a freestyle performance of their adventures for the people in shields, he doesn't notice any change in the situation (in reality the semiconscious prisoners gain inspiration from the dance). Feeling there is no way to break them out, Crastis, using her spirit powers, attempts to communicate with Bertrand, Ozoren, and Aedan. Helping each to be able to move a little bit.

Unfortunately it is around this time that the Desire Demon, Kalyco, arrives at the top of the slope. Placing Ozoren's three skulls on the group she begins casting a spell that returns them to life and provides them with skeletal bodies. As the group begins to do battle withe the three skeletons and demon. Killian charges up the slope, but falls over stabbing himself. Riordan jumps over him and attack Deirdre. Riordan manages to break out of his shell, standing ready to attack. While Ardal charges up the rise and engages Shaemus in battle, dealing a nasty blow to the skeleton. The Enlightened Brother engages the group from a distance, casting spells and firing arrows, while the guards hang back at the sudden appearance of the creatures. Meanwhile Crastis shoots an Arcane Lance at Deirdre, while Pelekor runs back to where Kynedrin is, near the path, and starts firing arrows from there.

During the fight Ardal is taken down by a blood drinking Shaemus, but is taken down himself before he can finish the purifier off. Killian is forced to fight Jeff, before dodging around to attack the Kalyco, before he can chase after the mute the skeleton is attacked by Bertrand who manages to free himself. Meanwhile the two other PC's, Aedan and Ozoren, are frozen in place thanks to Kalyco's magic. Kadrial also manages to awaken and chop Jeff in half, while Riordan finishes off Dierdrie. Kalyco, who is very injured by Killian's attacks and numerous ranged damage, heals her self by draining a Purifier of health. Killian and Riordan then step forward killing the demon.

As soon as the demon dissolves away, the shields disappear and the other prisoners stumble out. At the same time the islands begin to shake and crumble, and Kadrial returns letting the group know that the demon, Kalyco, kept this part of the fade alive, without her it's crumbling and will disappear in a minute, unless a mage will sacrifice there essence to keep the fade islands aloft for a bit longer. Informed of this and with no one stepping forward, Kadrial decides to take it upon himself, the group salutes Kadrial, and the elf heals Ardal bringing him back from the brink. Kadrial fades off into nothing and the shaking stops. The group is now forced to navigate their way back out of the Fade. Taking note of the situations they've been through, the group manages to make it back to Island Four. While so many portals to choose from, Ozoren decides to nip through checking each portal. With two portals left and having disappeared for a while. Riordan decides to check the two remaining portals, finding the right one, the group steps through onto Island One before stepping through the huge entrance portal. Ozoren continues to be lost as time runs out. Island hoping he eventually makes his way to Island One and steps through the entrance portal escaping just in time.

Back in the real world the group breaks up, with the guards waiting for the Templars, the Grey Wardens and Enlightened Brotherhood leaving. The main group also decides to leave, returning to the Inn, they pack up there stuff and leave, separating and deciding never to meet again.

Congratulations you have completed the Invisible Chains

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Chapter Fifteen
Navigating a Fade Maze (or How to Kill a Dwarf Twice, Redux)

Continuing the battle, the group comprised of Fabre, Pelekor, and Riordan manages to defeat the Rage Demon. As the beast dissolves a spirit forms were it stood: Ozoren, who spends his time goofing around as usual before disappearing; soon after two members of the Enlightened Brotherhood enter from a locked door, having hidden from the demon and darkspawn. Fabre, who had run off previously, remerges from the other side of the island, the portals forming in a loop. They then go through the only remaining portal and find themselves on a smaller island with a table and a tea set on top. Sat at the table is a middle-aged elf sipping tea, as he raises his cup in greeting towards Pelekor, the dwarf reacts by attempting to perform a jump kick, in response the elf raises his hand freezing the dwarf in mid-air, Pelekor, in his mad attempts to come down unfortunately poops his pants, thankfully Kadrial is gracious enough to swap his pants out for a clean pair thanks to his mastery of the Fade; something the dwarf could never manage. He then introduces himself to the rest of the group as Kadrial a Dalish Keeper. After some discussion with Riordan he agrees to the help the group (after laughing at Pelekor's twice-death by darkspawn). After doing some calculations and map reading of the islands, Kadrial manages to lead them to what he hopes is the map island.

Meanwhile, the group of Crastis, Ardal, two guards, and two Enlightened Brothers, continue to be wary of the old woman serving them food, gaining back health as they eat. As the charade continues unabated, she shocks the old woman twice with her power; this causes the woman to transform into a huge and angry Envy Demon, the cottage growing dark before disappearing as she does. As Ardal and the four others run off at top speed into the fog, the Demon sets its rage onto Crastis dealing massive damage to the elf. The others are soon stopped by the demon which seems to teleport itself, knocking down everyone but Ardal, the Purifier leader and trained Templar, draws his blade and attacks the creature, managing to knock it down with a furious blow while the rest of the group attack it until it dies. Killing the creature the fog begins to withdraw allowing them to see the surrounding area and the islands. The group decides to travel back to the island they were just on and take a different portal.

At the same time, the group comprised of Kynedrin, Killian, and the two guards, continues their journey through the endless forest. Following the river to the north, they find two portals next to each other, one blue and one green. Deciding to step through the green portal and find themselves on Island Thirteen, with an armoured elf wielding a large sword the only thing in sight. Kynedrin approaches the elf and asks for directions, the elf, happy to oblige, directs the group to the map island.

At this point the three groups then meet up on Island Five, which has a weeping willow in the middle with ten ordinary branches and one red one, with all groups together they then plot a plan of action. Kynedrin points out that the Pride Demon they passed on Island Four held a soul, probably of one of their friends, turning back to fight the demon the whole group works together and smites the demon. As it dissolves leaving its bones, the group watches as Aedan's spirit appears questioning what happened, before he vanishes Kadrial tells him to "remember where you go."

Returning to Island Five, Riordan takes leadership of the group and asks Kadrial to direct them through the maze of islands. After spending some time on the island Kadrial manages to hold each of the branches, peering into what that Island holds. At the same time Kynedrin, spotting three shrubberies (nee) decides to lick them, noticing that only one of them is actually real, the dwarf also realises that the shrubbery (nee) reacts to his licking with delight, uprooting itself it begins to keep close to Kynedrin. Kadrial then comes back to the group and explains that the islands are arranged as a maze of three different levels, with puzzles at each level, only by solving the puzzles at each level can the proceed to the next. He tasks the group with finding any weird stuff in the Fade as that might involve a puzzle, the rest of the group then points to the shrubbery (nee). Kadrial then locates where the plant is meant to go (Island Three). The group decides to go back to Island Eight and deal with the elf behind the green portal.

Island hopping back to the endless forest, they arrive at Island Thirteen. Seeing the large group arrive, he inquires if any of them would be worthy to challenge him. Fabre, a Colonel in the Val Royeaux guard, steps forward. Pelekor, Kynedrin, and Crastis, not having an honourable bone in their body prepare to also attack the spirit and win the fight. As the duel begins, both individuals are pretty evenly matched, however Fabre is soon distracted by the antics of the three dishonourable sorts, however there weapons and magic spells continually pass straight through the elf who isn't bothered by them. Pelekor tries three times to use his secret jump kick that he has no skill in whatsoever: the first time he misses, the second time he careens straight through the elf hitting Fabre in the process injuring both, the third time by sheer luck and improbability he hits the spirit, in response the elf freezes the battle strikes the dwarf a fearsome blow before knocking him out. Continuing the fight Fabre manages to defeat the elf thanks to two free hits. As the elf is struck for the final time he begins to disappear stating: "ah death, how I have longed for you." With the Island Thirteen cleared Fabre picks up the green gem the elf was guarding and pockets it, while Crastis heals Pelekor.
 

Continuing on, the large group journeys to Island Three, arriving to find a large swamp, they journey carefully through it, but disturb a large horde of skeletons who attack the group, managing to knock down Pelekor and Crastis, the rest of the group kills as many as they can, but they are always replaced with more, with even more rising out of the water. With no way out, and the murderous skeletons pressing in on all sides, Kadrial uses his diminishing power to knock back the skeletons surrounding them giving the group room to move. Riordan, noticing that the elf has aged considerably, chastises him, Fabre and Ardal pick up their fallen comrades and they all leg it towards the island in the centre of the swamp. When the group steps foot on the island, the skeletons loose interest in the large group, simply pretending they don't exist, the skeletons go back to lying down in the water. After healing their fallen comrades, the group notices that the shrubbery (nee) roots itself into the island, opening a green portal behind it.

Stepping through the portal onto Island Twelve the group is face with a vicious wolf, easily killing the vicious animal. Riordan fishes out a blue gem from the river, in a brazen act of burglary Pelekor manages to steal the blue gem out from the Grey Warden's nose (literally) without him even noticing, he also steals the gem from Fabre's pocket and decides to shove both up his ass for some unknowable reason.

Continuing on, the group sprints back across the swamp avoiding the skeletons and island hope back to Island five, from there Kadrial calculates that the next portal will open on Island Ten. Travelling there they find only blue portals and a large hill. Riordan notices a mark on the top of the hill; standing on it he has a vision of castle walls and a vase. Splitting the party up, Riordan goes with Kadrial to Island Two to find what he saw. Locating the vase, he smashes it on the floor. Back on Island Ten a green portal springs to life, the large group hastens through and are immediately engaged by a single shade. The group stays back and watches the shade engage the more magical members of the group, who manage to destroy the creature.

Riordan and Kynedrin, rather than return to Island Ten, decide to travel to Island One and discover what is there. Once on the island they discover a huge portal that presumably leads back to the real world. While there they also discover a Despair Demon “Loneliness”. Loneliness initially tells Riordan that it wishes to lead the two of them to his mistress, while Riordan, not trusting a demon, attacks the creature. Startled by the damage, it rises from the ground and stabs the Grey Warden with an icicle; the ice fills up Riordan’s blood stream freezing him from the inside. Thanks to Kadrial he is only frozen momentarily, being healed  by the Keeper (who suffers minor aging as a result), the Grey Warden kills the demon after this freeing Bertrand’s soul who appears before them, before the Orlesian disappears Kadrial reutters that he should: “remember where you go.”

Riordan then travels to Island Four, and with Kadrial’s help solves the final puzzle: putting out the fire in the back of the Island. Revealing the four and final Green Portal. The two then travels back to Island Ten, grab the group, then island hop to Island Fourteen. Stepping through the portal the group sees a pedestal in the middle of the island with three circular grooves set into it, large enough for the gems they have found. They also see a huge ogre guarding it. Feeling cocky and maybe poisoned by the gems in his butt, Pelekor swaggers up to the ogre with the attempt to convince the ogre to disappear, like he did with the ghost darkspawn, however on approach he realises that he has made a huge mistake. Staring down a massive Ogre, Pelekor can barely form a coherent sentence, and nearly poops out the gems in fear, averting the ruin of another set of pants. The ogre, annoyed by the little dwarf, smashes his club against Pelekor knocking him out cold and nearly hammering him into the earth. The rest of the group spring into action and begin to battle the fearsome beast.

Meanwhile on another Island at the centre of the Fade maze. The Desire Demon: Kalyco, contemplates her plans, behind her three skulls, and to her side twelve figures trapped in green, all are asleep. She laughs, longing for the battle to come and the pure ecstasy she will get from killing her foes.

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Chapter Fourteen
...the abyss gazes back into you

Continuing the battle in the wine cellar. The Enlightened Brotherhood, joined with Selvalar, enter the cellar and begin to shoot at the enemy, while the Duelists, under Alizera, and the Purifiers continue to fight the Guards and Ardal. Ozoren, continuing the attack on the demon, attempts to choke & intimidate (his famous combo), the demon just laughs and brushes away his hand, the converted Qunari then makes the mistake of attempting to flirt with the desire demon. The demon turns the tables on him, turning into the form of Mehra, Ozoren, who has become quite broken, is convinced to kiss Mehra, thus he is marked by the demon and becomes her slave. The Qunari then goes on to attack Kynedrin. Meanwhile, Selvalar, seeing Bertrand and the Purifiers so close together lobs a fire bomb at the the group, Crastis, who was close by, manages to avoid the flames, while the rest of the group is hit. This causes Ardal, already seriously injured, to run off, while the purifiers turn on the guards. Seeing the fire, and realising the chaos of the situation, Pelekor runs off screaming about a fire, managing to convince two mages to run too. At the same time Bertrand and Aedan then team up and take on the Nevarran together, managing to cut her down, as Bertrand prepares to finish her off, Selvalar uses her last action on this earth to pull the pin of her penultimate grenade, igniting the two fire grenades in an awesome display of flame that consumes her body utterly, and hitting both Aedan and Bertrand leaving them both close to death. The huge burst of flame causes everyone in the room to pause for a moment, before continuing to fight on. Meanwhile Pelekor, reaching the top of the stairs, finds his way blocked by three figures he doesn't recognise, they pass him and the mages on the way down. Crastis, having gotten through the scum of bodies, spots the three Grey Wardens: Killian, Riordan, and Maxence. The elf explains what is going on, the three Grey Wardens, having sensed Darkspawn, decide to enter the fray and ask Crastis to look after the injured, pointing to Ardal. The three Grey Wardens charge in and begin to engage the three possessed PC's, in this battle Ozoren falls. At the same time, Alizera and her two Duelists fall in battle, seeing her army fall apart the demon conjures all of her magic and breaks open the fade dragging, her army, two members of the Enlightened Brotherhood, and Maxence. With that the battle ends.

With the chaos of the situation over, the whole group then discusses what to do; they have the choice of either getting the Circle of Magi to close the Fade Portal, or entering the fade and closing it themselves. The grey Wardens and a now healed Ardal decide they should head into it, while the rest of the group thinks about what should be done. Kynedrin then takes the initiative, having nearly died and now believing himself to be a woman, he charges at the group by the portal, hoping to knock them and himself into the portal, missing, he runs straight into the portal. Seeing this, Pelekor gains some backbone, and decides to head through the portal. Seeing her two dwarf comrades dive through the portal, Crastis and Fabre turn to one another and decide to head through too, with the remaining Enlightened Brotherhood members, and four members of the guard, Fabre orders the remaining guard to guard the room and inform the Mages/Templars when the sun comes up if they’re not back yet.

Having all entered the Fade the group is split into three. Fabre, Riorden, and Pelekor form one group; Kynedrin, Killian, and two guards form another; and Crastis, Ardal, and the remaining guards form the last group. There is no sign of the Elightened Brotherhood members at first.

The first group arrives at Island Nine. Arriving in a broom closet, the three find themselves in a castle like structure. After exploring for a bit, seeing two spirits, and battling ghost darkspawn, they step through a portal and arrive on Island Two. Leaving another broom closet, the group engages another group of darkspawn led by a Rage Demon. Pelekor, using his extreme powers of persuasion, manages to convince the two darkspawn ghosts that the world around them doesn’t exist, believing the silver tonged dwarf they fade from existence. Meanwhile Fabre and Riorden attack the Rage Demon, at first assaulted by the heat radiating from its body, they manage to hit it enough to extinguish the worst of its heat.

The second group arrives in a great forest on Island Eight, travelling through it for a time they see a demon, which looks similar to a Shade, but appears more solid. They fight and defeat the Sloth Demon, and release Abelard’s spirit. Killian also finds a ring embedded in a tree, pulling on the ring releases a large chain like a cord attached to it which drags the ring back when they pull on it. The group feels like the fade has shifted somewhat, but apart from that they don’t feel any change.

The third group arrives in a great hall; sat at its head is a Pride Demon, Jealousy. Ardal, seeing the demon, jumps through the nearest portal to Island Seven. After being commanded to bow Crastis and the two guards obey, bowing to the huge Demon. After the demon stomps away, his pride sated, the group follows Ardal through the portal. Arriving on a very foggy island, they make their way through the fog towards the silhouette of a cottage. Entering they find a surreal scene before them. Two Elightended Brotherhood members (one a mage) are sat drinking and eating at a kitchen table, while an old woman is cooking numerous treats for them. Welcoming the group in, the enter cautiously. Ardal, having had enough of magic, springs at the mage in the room, nearly killing him; he is only calmed by the old woman who offers him a beverage. The group soon notices that the food and drink has the ability to heal the group of wounds. Crastis meanwhile gets the sense that the old woman has an intense desire directed at her specifically.

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Chapter Thirteen
When you gaze long into the abyss...

Continuing the adventure, preparing for a long day tomorrow the group gets some sleep. With Bertrand having finally gotten over his fever, he is able to dream. The commoner dreams of the entire Templar Order kneeling before him, having been influenced by his adventur with the Purifiers to join the real Templars and reform them from within, Bertrand orders the Templars to strike down all those who stand against him and to purge from their ranks all zealots. Fading into black Bertrand is branded with the same mark as Abelard and Aedan, as he awakens he finds the same mark on his upper arm.

Meanwhile Crastis also dreams. Having finally gotten rid of her former master, and feeling free for the first time, she dreams of her Master bound before her, a knife in her hand, as a voice whispers for her to kill him. Before she can make a decision the scene shifts to again show her the cloaked wolf who warns her not to kill either the drug dealer nor the mage. Shifted back to the original scene, Crastis believes the wolf was referring to her Master before her, droping the knife she turns and walks away, the voice whispers: "strange, I thought revenge would be your thing, seems I miscalculated."

Meanwhile, while the rest of the group enjoys their sleep in comfortable settings, Ozoren has to endure a night in the Templar dungeons. Awoken rudely at 0700, he is dragged to an interrogation room and is strapped to a chair, shortly after Seeker Nathan Victors and Revered Mother Valeriane Gisele come in to interrogate. After attempting to spin a story about how he is just here for work traveling with Aedan, the Seeker easily sees through his lies and orders the Mother to torture him, failing to break either of his ankles before smashing his kneecap, the Qunari gives them the names of his skulls and the name of the Inn. Believing that they will get nothing out of the Qunari, the Seeker asks if Ozoren has let the Chant of Light into his heart. Getting a negative the Revere Mother brands him with the Sun of Light before proceeding to torture him. Leaving the Mother to perform her holy work, Victors leaves to do some investigating.

Meanwhile the rest of the group awakens from a fitful rest and decides to spend their remaining day shopping for items they need to party. Crastis and Bertrand go and buy a dress and shiny armour respectively, along with a mask to go with both. Aedan shines his own armour, making it look party able. At the same time Pelekor is enjoying breakfast when the inn is invaded by a contingent of Templars led by Seeker Victors, sweeping through the inn the Seeker approaches Pelekor and asks if he can sit, while his bodyguards are nervous the dwarf acquiesces the request. Asking him neumerious questions about wh he's in the city, and about Ozoren and Aedan, the Seeker is initially suspicious of the dwarf and tells the Templars to take him in. Before they can arrest him Pelekor convinces them that he doesn't  know where the others have gone. Victors believes him, apologises for the intrusion, and leaves. The Dwarven tradesman then goes out shopping and replaces his armour with a cloth suit and mask.

Meanwhile, Ozoren has succumbed to the torture, revealed everything he knows about why the group is in the city and all about Blaen. He also recites the Chant of Light and prays to Andraste, believing that his skulls spoke with the voice of the Maker. Seeker Victors and Mother Gisele then intrust the newly converted Tal-Vasoth to infiltrate the party at Lady Senova's estate and kill Blaen. To this end they give him a party tunic and a cow mask, along with this they return all of his stuff. He then leaves White Spire to preach the word of the Maker before the party.

With all members of the group ready, Kynedrin hires a carrige to take them to the party in style. Picking up Pelekor and his bodyguards, they leave for the party. Arriving there they all present their invites and mingle in the crowd of party goers, while Pelekor orders his bodyguards to remain outside. At the party Pelekor and Kynedrin remain at the edge and try to ignore everyone, Kynedrin watches the wall like its a piece of art. While Bertrand seeing Ozoren attempting to preach the Maker is insulted and tells the Qunari off for it. Selvalar finds Lord Romain Senova and, after a dance with him, is taken to meet his mother. While Aedan finds Lady Marcellette Senova, after flirting for a time she takes him to introduce him to Blaen (whom Aedan tells Marcellette is an old friend). Crastis finds Edwin sat at a table by himself looking annoyed, going to sit with him the two Tevinter Elves make conversation, she thanks him for sending Selvalar and Ozoren to save her life, while Edwin regrets that they had to kill Hessarius but understands it, he then hands her a certificate guaranteeing her status as a free elf.

Over the course of the party the whole group locatets both Ardal and Blaen, with both Aedan and Ozoren approaching him. Ozoren, having gotten into an altercation with another lord, is challenged to a duel, he names Blaen his champion and manages to convince him that the lord said insulting things about him. Going outisde, most of the group watches as Blaen takes two seconds to kill the other lord. Both Bertrand and Crastis are terrified by his skill, while Ozoren and Aedan believe they can take him.

After the duel Blaen and Ardal then make their move, followed by Blaen's bodyguards (including a free Alizera) and Ardal's three purifiers. The group follows them into the kitchen and then down into the basement, Crastis makes sure to tell the blonde servant her pass phrase, while Selvalar informs one of the house guards of their pass phrase. Decending down into the basement both Aedan and Crastis feel a chill as if in some previous life bad things happened in basements. Listening to Ardal and Blaen discuss matters of importance, the group decides to just charge straight in. Taken by surprise, Pelekor manages to sneak behind Blean and deliever a devastating attack while Kynedrin throws an axe at him, Ozoren manages to use his knew found faith to bless the party. Having been severally wounded Blean calls out to Rein, who for some reason is standing in the corner head bowed, to help. Rein then puts his arm out, and both Bertrand and Aedan are both commanded to kill Blaen, which Bertrand does slicing the ex-chevalier in half.

The battle then changes drastically, there is a flash as a desire demon, appears beside Blaen's body and picks up the fallen chain, she then commands all those in her power (Alizera, the two duelists, the purifiers, Bertrand, and Aedan) to kill all those who oppose her. The group, numbering just four (Selvalar had waited at the basement door to attack anyone who tried to run out), and Ardal who was not marked, are severally outnumbered, luckily they are saved by the timely arrival of Fabre bringing 5 guards with him. The two groups then clash.

Ardal is forced to take on his Purifiers before Bertrand strikes him and they move on to the guards. Aedan attacks various members of the group, severally injuring Pelekor in the process. Crasits barely manages to resist a vulnurability hex from the desire demon, while Ozoren engages the demon himself, attemping to knock the chain from her hand. Continuing the battle, Selvalar hears the basement door open again and wonders who else is coming down. Now dealing with a full fledged battle for survival, the group will have to use all the wits and cunning if they want to see the morning.

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Chapter Twelve
Captured Thrice

Continuing on from last session, the three trouble makers continue the battle with the two shades. As the shades to tremendous damage to the group, the Selvalar and Ozoren decide to light up torches to attack the ghosts, while Crastis, chased by a shade, runs into the parlour and strikes it with three powerful Arcane Lances. Meanwhile, seeing that their torches are doing little damage, Ozoren throws his torch, setting fire to a painting, and runs out of the house. Noticing that the shade won’t leave the threshold, he begins to moon it and throw stuff at it, the Qunari begins to hallucinate his mother as the shade and he goes over to give it a hug, and gets hurt as a result, backing away again. Selvalar decides to make a run through the house, managing to make it to the kitchen at the back, she creeps out and manages not to attract the Shade waiting at the door. Walking up the stairs she steps on a creaky step, steps on a cat’s tail which yells out, steps on a horn that was left there for some reason, before stepping on a series of pots and pans that go skittering down the stairs. Seeing that none of that has alerted the shade, the adventure lets out a sigh, which attracts the shade. Seeing an intruder has bypassed it, the Shade runs (floats) at the adventurer, who runs up the stairs. While Crastis, having healed herself twice, is finally defeated by the Shade knocking her down, as she feels her life drain away she sees the shade looking down at her curious. Ozoren sees a pair of guards walking down the road and decides to enlist their help, telling them that they were there to deliver a package and that there’s a mage and ghosts in the house that attacked them, one runs off while the other peers through the front window and sees a shade menacing over Crastis. Meanwhile Selvalar reaches the top of the stairs and opens the left door and finds herself in a bathroom, ducking out she manages to avoid being attacked by the shade, opening the right door she finds Hessarius sitting in bed annoyed. He asks why they have broken into his house, while Selvalar says that they were supposed to deliver a package, Hessarius is confused and doesn’t believe the adventurer so he uses magic to knock her out of the room and into the waiting arms of a shade, dealing damage to her. Selvalar has to watch as the door to the bedroom snaps shut and locks itself. The adventurer then struggles out of the Shade’s arms and runs into the bathroom, opening a cupboard Selvalar finds a bunch of vials of red liquid, he drinks one which, thanks to the placebo effect, gives him back some health, then throws another at the shade, missing it and hitting the wall.

At this moment the guard breaks down the window and gets into the house to rescue Crastis just as her vison goes dark, the last thing she sees is a man helping her. Thankfully the elf has just been knocked unconscious. Seeing the two shades vanish like smoke, Selvalar leaves the house just as a group of guards, and a Templar, rock up asking questions, while Selvalar and Ozoren explain the same story: they were delivering a package and got attacked by the mage with his ghosts. At this time Hessarius arrives out the front of his house, the Templar confronts him about being a mage, which Hessarius doesn’t deny before showing the Templar a document. The Templar shrugs and states he can’t do anything, before leaving. Hessarius then explains that he was just sleeping in bed when the two broke into his house and attacked his servant (gesturing at an unconscious Crastis). Seeing how there is a Qunari involved (and also Hessarius is upper class) the guards believe the Magister. They arrest Ozoren and Selvalar and ask if they should take Crastis to the hospital, Hessarius declines. As everyone leaves he looks over at Crastis and smiles with glee having finale got his property back.

Meanwhile, waking up from a fitful rest, Pelekor and Aedan go down for a good breakfast, and ignore the two unconscious individuals, and decide to have a good day it, unconcerned with what happened with the three from last night.

At the same time, Selvalar and Ozoren awaken back in prison. After being served a watery soup and iron-like bread, they are released after having been bailed out by Ullrich Caunish, the Magister who hoped to help Crastis. Noticing she had not returned to the inn that night, he became worried, checking up on her he discovered that two idiots had been arrested at Hessarius’ house, believeing them to be friends of Crastis’ he bailed them out. Asking the pair to return to the house and rescue the elf, in return he pays them five gold and a chicken finger.

Back at the house, Crastis awakens stripped to her unmentionables and tied to a table, looking around the dim musty smelling room that she has fleeting memories of what happened last night, believing she was somehow captured by Hessarius and believing he has something awful in store for her (having seen a work top covered in blood and tools). She attempts to break out of her bonds, managing to wriggle her right hand she unties herself, gets off the table, and, seeing a door, and attempts to break out. Finding out the door is locked she attempts to find something to help bust out, locating a butcher’s knife as the best thing, she smashes it against the door causing a big splinter in it, but it’s still intact, after failing to swing it a second time she hears another door open and footsteps walking down a set of stairs. Dropping the butcher’s knife and running back to the table, Crastis manages to tie herself back up just as Hessarius enters the room carrying a tray full of food, he fails to notice the fallen knife. After having a small chat, Hessarius feeds his former slave a weak broth, after she says something he doesn’t like the Magister hits Crastis and leaves the room. Realising that Hessarius is far crazier than what he was like when she left him, Crastis is that much more determined to escape.

Arriving at the house, Selvalar and Ozoren go around the nearby alley to scale the gardens and walls to get to the back garden. Arriving at the right garden, the two rogues attempt to sneak into the house, not noticing the glyph on the door they open the door. Hearing the sound of someone rushing through the house towards them, they both decide to hide, Ozoren runs towards the cupboard and manages to close the door before Hessarius come out into the kitchen, while Selvalar jumps into the long grass. Unfortunately for the Nevarran he is spotted by the Magister and sent flying into the air by his magic, before crashing back into the ground again. Meanwhile Ozoren, who manages to get the door open, charges at the Magister and stabs him in the back. At the same time, noticing it’s been a while, Crastis decides to make a break for it, getting out of her bonds again, she grabs the knife again and manages to smash the door hard enough that the lock brakes. Opening the door she attempts to leave, not noticing the stairs she trips up, but catches herself. Winded for a moment, Selvalar, still on the ground, manages to throw a grenade at the mage, who had just faile a sleep spell, doing tremendous damage to him. Managing to put the fire out, Hessarius realises too late that he is dealing some powerful individuals, summoning a red shield he prepares, stabbing him again, Ozoren feels his life is drained but it is not enough to save the mage. As he gasps for breath he sees Crastis emerge from the basement door, calling out to her he says: “I just wanted to,” before dying. Seeing the Magister is dead, the group then goes through his house looting everything they can; Crastis gets her equipment back, while Ozoren and Aedan steal money, they then leave the horrible house behind forever.

Arriving back at the inn, Pelekor and Aedan couldn’t care less about the three, while Crastis goes up stairs to find Abelard and Bertrand. Realising very quickly that Bertrand is very sick and that Abelard is dead, she comes back downstairs to inform the group, Pelekor and Aedan still don’t care, while Selvalar and Ozoren snap into action again. Crastis goes off to find the doctor to fix up Bertrand, leaving Abelard to the others. Selvalar, as Abelard’s childhood neighbour and a fellow Nevarran believes that there should be a mortalitasi that can burry Abelard, to find one he journeys to the Grand Cathedral. Ozoren decides to just set him on fire, but just can’t bring himself to do so, deciding that, as a mage, the Chantry should decide what to do with him, he leaves to take Abelard’s corpse to the Grand Cathedral.

Arriving at the Grand Cathedrial, Selavalr goes to look for a mortalitasi, searching around for a while, he spends time inside the chantry, seeing the beautiful paints and statues, and hearing the singing of the chant, Selvalar also receives a wanted notice with Ozoren and Abelard’s face on them. Meanwhile Ozoren arrives at the Cathedrial, noticed immediately, he is arrested by the Templars and taken to White Spire, the nearby Circle of Magi, where Abealrd’s body is taken off him and put in another cell.

Meanwhile Crastis manages to bribe the backstreet doctor at the Prattling Prince to make a house call for Bertrand. Arriving at the Inn, he manages to fix Bertrand up and he looks better, the doctor informs Crastis that the Orlesian will be up and about in a day or so. Racing back to the inn, Selvalar shows the wanted poster to the group, realising that Ozoren has been gone a while, Kynedrin has no choice but to order an evacuation of the inn. After having a terse conversation with Pelekor, they leave the dwarf behind, while Aedan also decides to remain behind before the demon instructions kick in forcing him to go, together they cart Bertrand out. Left to his own devices Pelekor orders a new room for himself and his body guards. Arriving at a dingy little inn in the Pauve district, the group sets up and orders some dinner, with Crastis eating in her room to avoid the stares.

Across the city in the White Spire, a male Templar closes a file and looks up at a Revered Mother: “shall we begin,” he says.

In a large estate servants prepare for a party, while the lady of the house muses the decisions to take.

In a town house in a rich part of the city, an ex-Chevalier makes a toast while a mysterious man sits in an armchair. “How many have you gotten?” he asks. “I had two,” the man answers, “Only one now.”

In a safe house the Enlightened Brotherhood prepare for an attack, their mages preparing spells, their soldiers sharpening swords.

At the Prison the guards also prepare, while a guard in an office who looks in charge re-reads a letter of orders he has received from his superiors. He places it down, then brings out a charcoal drawing of himself when he was younger with two others: “Why did you have to be so stupid,” he mutters.

While in an inn an angry man wearing Templar armour and a cloak with a white starburst on it fumes, he paces up and down: “Damn that Garrett,” he mutters, “How stupid can he be, when we’re so close.”

All of this occurs this night, none will know what the morning will bring, but all have their destiny’s tied up with the heroes of this story, and a party all will attend. Meanwhile the dreams will come.

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Chapter Eleven
So Long Drunkie

Returning to Bertrand’s adventure, the Orlesian commoner makes his way to the Docks. Arriving at the warehouse he finds Garrett waiting with two fellow purifiers. Garrett warns Bertrand not to speak of anything that occurs inside the warehouse, once he agrees the purifier opens the door and locks it again once everyone is inside. Seeing a group of bound and gagged women on the floor, Bertrand quires as to who they are; Garrett reveals that they are Mages and they are going to be punished for using magic. At first Bertrand believes that he will have to kill a mage, but it suddenly dawns on him that this is not the case, that the purifiers have something far more evil in mind for the defenceless mages. Refusing to go along with this plan, Bertrand attempts to leave prompting a fight with the three Purifiers; the Orlelsian makes a brave stand but is ultimately overwhelmed by the more aggressive Templar zealots. Seeing that Bertrand is likely to die and that no one will save them, the mages give into their despair and allow themselves to be possessed, transforming into abominations. The sight of the four monsters terrifies the four fighters, as the Purifiers spring into action the lead abomination casts a very powerful spell that turns Garrett inside out. Seeing Garrett’s blood and guts splattered across the room, Bertrand turns to flee. Attempting to break down the door, he hears a voice behind him saying: “you helped them.” Realising that the abominations are coming for him, he charges the door. Miraculously, the door springs off its hinges before he even touched it. Running off, Bertrand hears an explosion coming from the direction of the warehouse. Upon getting back to the inn, Bertrand seeks healing, managing to get bandaged up, he goes up to bed after such a stressful day.

Meanwhile, continuing the adventure with the rest of the group. Ozoren decides it’s a good time to hunt down his mentor, convincing the rest of the group to go along with him; he manages to  rag along both Abelard and Crastis (Ozoren has since  managed to heal his broken hand by pending a lot of money on a salve). Arriving at the Grand Cathedral, the group splits up and tries to find Nerrani, Abelard approaches a Templar and tries to ask him about the elf, the Templar begins to suspect that the Nevarran is an apostate when Ozoren walks up and attempts to intimidate the Templar, causing him to call out to his Templar fellows that there is an Apostate and Qunari attacking him. As Ozoren drags Abelard off, causing a trail of Templar’s to follow after. Aedan and Crastis don’t know quite what to say about the situation, as they pretend not to be associated with the two troublemakers an elven servant saddles up to Aedan and inquires what happened. After learning that the Qunari was Ozoren, she tells Aedan that the Qunari can find Nerrani at the Fox’s Arms Pub. With this information in hand the two leave to attempt to find Ozoren.

Having lost their pursuers, Abelard and Ozoren return to the Moonlight Cat Inn to regroup with the rest of the group. Aedan and Crastis come in and deliver the news of Neranni’s location. Deciding to go and deal with his former mentor, he drags the rest of the group, except Pelekor. Arriving at the pub the group finds it strangely deserted, as soon as they arrive an elf appears at the top of the balcony and speaks to Ozoren, challenging him to a honourable fight to the death, agreeing to the challenge Ozoren begins to help Neranni push the tables out of the way making a space in the room to fight. The rest of the group is very confused as to what is happening between the two Qunari, but decide to stay out of it, just before the fight begins Ozoren explains that they will be fighting to the death and that they should stay out of it.

Beginning the fight Neranni skips around Ozoren’s sword strikes and pierces him several time with her sword. While Ozoren manages to deliver a few sword strikes, Neranni manages to dance around most of his blows and hit back with her own while mocking him. As Ozoren gets more and more frustrated, and the heckles from the other members of the group become louder, he is almost dealt a terrible blow from Neranni but Selvalar steps in the way breaking the rules of the combat. Both Ozoren and Neranni tell the adventurer to get out of the way, since they both agree that what Selvalar did was wrong they both continue the fight as honour is not broken. They continue on until Neranni delivers a terrible blow to Ozoren dropping him to the floor, the tal-vashoth is still alive but barely, held up by his two blades, aiming to finish him with a coup de grace, unfortunately Crastis nips in and manages to slightly heal Ozoren distracting Neranni who pushes her away. The distraction is enough time for Ozoren to stab Neranni through the chest. As his mentor/mother figure dies she whispers to Ozoren: “you were always my best student.”

Meanwhile Abelard, dealing with a lot of stress decides to set the curtains on fire, while Aedan and others in the group yell at Ozoren, Selvalar, and Crastis. Abelard, having set fire to the building, runs away, while Aedan leaves and bars the door hoping that they burn to death after cheating in the fight (both men are very stressed from the psychological effects of their marks). Meanwhile Selvalar searches the body and loots Neranni’s sword, several grenades, and her money, while handing Ozoren a note he wrote as a child. Seeing that she kept the note Ozoren becomes visible emotional for a short time before shaking it off and carrying on. Seeing the door locked, the three exit through the back door. Finding a group of four Qunari in the kitchen, the three are initially taken aback, but they only ask if the fight is over and then go in to take the body. The three then leave with the Qunari. Aedan, watching this from the front door through a window, notices that Ozoren has left his three skulls on a table, the Ferelden, sickened by the Qunari’s practice and wishing to teach him a lesson, enters the room and smashes the skulls. Leaving the burning building he sees a demon holding one of the skulls (Jeff), shocked and unable to move, he can do nothing while the demon commands him to re-join the group and kill Blaen, the demon then wipes Aedan’s memory leaving him only with the desire to re-join the group and kill Blaen. Meanwhile Abelard, who has been running through the city, is stopped when he sees a desire demon, also holding another of Ozoren’s skulls (Deidre), frozen to the spot he is forced to obey the demon’s commands to re-join the group and kill Blaen.

Eventually everyone returns to the Inn and decides to wait around with nothing else to do; Pelekor, who has spent his time hanging out with his posse all day, mostly ignores the group until he goes to bed. Meanwhile Abelard, long suffering from the day, and dealing with a lot of stress has an aneurysm, killing him instantly. Believing he is just passed out from drinking, Aedan pays money to have someone drag Abelard upstairs and into bed, the Ferelden goes to bed shortly after. Gathering together, Ozoren, Crastis, and Selvalar, having become ostracised from the group (the group has essentially been split in two, a loose alliance of Pelekor, Aedan, and Abelard on the one side; and the tight group of Crastis, Selvalar, and Ozoren on the other; Bertrand is far too ill to deal with the group’s problems), decide to deal with Crastis’ problem next and go to find her old master, having been given information that there aren’t any guards at her old master’s place except a routine guard sweep. They travel to the town house expecting minimum resistance, the three go up to the door and find it unlocked, going through Ozoren and Crastis go down the dark corridor (Selvalar guards outside). Approaching the stairs, the house is eerily quiet, until they hear the door snap shut and the tumblers turning, locking the door. Realising they are both trapped, they watch as, rising from the shadows, a pair of shades attack the pair, Pelkor attempts to stab at the shades, but finds his blades just pass through not damaging the ghosts, while Crastis tries to twice cast a shock spell and failing both times. Realising that something is happening inside, Selvalar manages to pick the lock with her knife, opening the door. Seeing the open door and a fruitless battle against ghosts, Ozoren bolts leaving the elf holding the bag.

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Chapter Ten
Ocean's Six and a Half

The group plus Kynedrin travel to Lady Albinson’s town house. Taking the cart, the group arrives with no problems, once at the house the group are taken in through the servant’s entrance to the parlour to meet Lady Albinson.

Carrying themselves with grace and poise they gain the respect of the Lady who is deeply interested in the group. She informs them that she will give them invites to the party as her representatives, but only if they a series of jobs for her. Albinson explains that she would like the group to steal a shield from her neighbour, and place a love letter on a young lord. Agreeing to the two jobs the group sets out to plan and split up.

The first group comprised of Selvalar, Crastis, and Abelard take the cart and travel to the Sweet Song Brandy Parlour. After arriving at the parlour they easily locate their mark, Selvalar comes up with a plan to distract the young lord, while Abelard sneaks the letter onto him. Unfortunately Selvalar, in the process of trying to spill drinks over the mark, spills it all over herself instead, and falls over hitting her head. The young lord, ever a gentleman, attempts to help the young Nevarran up, and makes a bandage for her to use. Using the chaos to his advantage and managing to deftly place the letter on his person. The three, their job now complete, leave the parlour.

The Second group, comprised of Pelekor, Aedan, Kynedrin, Bertrand, and Ozoren come up with a plan to break into the next door house. Pelekor contracts Albinson’s Manservant to get a group of navies and an engineer to help them break into the sewer, Pelekor also gets him to write a permission letter asking for the house blueprints. The dwarf goes to the Imperial Palace and retrieves the documents without much trouble. Arriving back at the house along with the Manservant and the engineer, a fellow dwarf, he then gets to work putting together a plan to break into the next door house. While they put the plan into action Bertrand leaves to go on a time travel mission. Soon after the Navies, along with Selvalar, Crastis, and Abelard arrive, with everything in place the navies and the group break a hole through Albinson’s cellar wall, the engineer, leading the group of naves, goes into the sewer and walks down it towards the other house. The next thing the group hears is a large explosion; coming back the engineer states that the sewer wall has been breached allowing water to flow through, while the navies grumble about nearly being blown up.

Moving on to phase two of their plan Abelard, Aedan, and Selvalar go over to the neighbour house pretending to be members of the Département des travaux publics. Unfortunately a major snag of the plan is that, with the absence of Bertrand, Abelard is the only one who can speak Orlesian, and the occupiers of the house will be expecting members of the imperial government to speak their native tongue. Hoping that nothing goes wrong, the trip walk over to the house, a servant opens the door and Abelard, surprisingly, manages to talk without slurring and makes himself clearly understood by everyone. The servant is sceptical of their story of a sewer leak, so he goes back inside to confirm the story. Having received an evacuation order the lord and lady of the manor have no choice but to leave their home, grumbling about it the whole time. With the house empty the Selvalar enters first and makes a beeline for the shield, stealing it with the help of the two navies, while the other two alongside the engineer. While Abelard, not having drunken in a while goes straight to the kitchen and begins to empty the manor’s alcohol stocks.

Finishing up the work and theft, the group leaves. Selvalar, making a final sweep of the house finds Abelard lying drunk in the kitchen. Attempting to awaken the drunken mage Selvalar notices that Abelard’s bandages have come loose and the Nevarran notices the mark on his hand, shocked by this he tells Ozoren (who had gotten into the house to steal everything he could) to get Pelekor.  The dwarf, seeing the mark, believes they should burn Abelard in the kitchen; Selvalar and Ozoren dismiss that idea immediately. Deciding instead to tie the Mage up, they hog tie Abelard who gives out little struggle (still in a stupor) and drag him to the house next door.

Arriving at the house, Abelard calls for a group meeting in the cellar, telling the workmen to get out. They then all argue about what should be done, Pelekor is still gung-ho to burn him. The group then has discussions about dreams and begin to suspect everyone else in the group, believing that these dreams may have something to do with the Chain of Andoral, but also realising that they have more important issues at the moment, the group decides to take Abelard to his friend Rein to figure out if there’s a demon directly or indirectly controlling the mage.

Walking back upstairs the group encounters the manservant again, while passing the navies and engineer who go back downstairs to fix the hole. The Manservant asks the group to come with him as Lady Albinson would like to see them. Givng the shield, Lady Albinson is impressed with the group and gives them eight invites without further delay. Equipped with the invites for a party on Sunday, the group leaves to prepare for it.

Arriving at Rein’s house, the group finds the mage much more dishevelled than when they left, admitting that his wife left him the group asks no further questions about it. Taken to another room Rein proceeds to read Abelard’s Fade signature, finding nothing the group has no choice but to untie him.

Returning to the moonlight cat, Crastis brings up the issue of her old master, members of the group decide to go with her to attack Magister Hessarius. However given how it is very late the group decides to visit the Magister’s house tomorrow. Curious about everything that happened today, and still believing they need to do more investigating the group settles in for a surprisingly uneventful night.

Awakening, the group has breakfast and decides to spend the day investigating before they deal with Crastis’ problem. At the same time a serving girl comes up and whispers into Crastis’ and Abelard’s ears that: “the enlightened brotherhood would like a word in the kitchen.” Remembering the weird group the two mages met early that week, the two decide to see what the serving girl wants and follow her into the kitchen. Similar to Fabre, the girl informs the two that they are also interested in the party when Ardal and Blaen will meet in private. She tells them that when the two men go off in private they should inform the blonde haired servant that: “the bird is in the cage.” She tells them that that will alert the Elevated Brotherhood members nearby who will attack Blaen and Ardal. With the information the two mages leave the kitchen.

Decideing to spend the day finding out about Blaen’s plan, Aedan travells around the city and overhears some gossip by the docks from a drunk. The drunk tells him that he saw Blaen at the docks with another man and a monster. Pointing him in the direction of the pier where this happened, Aedan takes his time to look round the pier and finds a single chain link that is made of a mysterious metal. The Fereldan then blacks out; when he awakens he forgets all about the chain link, in a daze Aedan wonders back to the inn. Back there he explains to the group the story, but can’t recall about what he was he picked up, concerned about him the group (minus Pelekor) decide to investigate the pier.

Arriving at the docks the group can’t locate anything, however soon after they finish their search, which leaves Aedan more confused than before, the group of attacked by a group of thugs who tell the group that: “Blaen say’s hello.”

Managing to defeat the group easily, they locate a note on one of the thugs reading: “This is you last warning,” signed “The Black Spider.” Believing the letter was meant for them, the group decides to leave. Ozoren also finds he cannot cut off any of the thug’s heads again, he questions why he sometimes can’t bring himself to do so but can’t fathom why.

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Chapter Nine
The Murder of Shamus the Antiquitarian Fisherman

After their travels in the sewers, the group arrives back at the Moonlight Cat Inn. As they are all stinking from the sewers, they decide to all take a bath and get clean. Following this Pelekor rejoins the group and decides to look over the treasure that the group gained from their trip underground, stating that he could get 1600 gold for the whole of it, the group decide to give it to him, in return for a 15% commission.

The group then decides to try and find an Antiquarian to translate the book. Remembering that there is one by the river Aedan manages to guide the group down to the shop: Shamuses’ Fishing Supply Store and Library. Arriving at the store they find the owner to be dressed as a sea captain, not trusting him to be a good translator they ask him to tell them if they can find a good translator for a family tome. After the group reveals that the book is written in Ancient Tevene, Shamus reveals that he did his dissertation on Ancient Tevene and that he can translate it. As the group had lied saying that the book is back at the inn, they take him back to the inn and up to their room.

Once there, they hand him the book. After a few minutes Shamus manages to translate a portion of the book, revealing that the book is called The Black Book of Andoral and that it contains folk tales. Only one story is complete and he recites it to the group, telling them about an escaped slave who ran away, met a spirit, was imbued with tremendous power, but had their soul bounded to the spirit’s forever. Finding similarities to the story of the elf they met underground, the group is freaked out. Deciding that they need to keep the translator quiet, the group discuss whether to kill him, hearing this Shamus decides that he should leave and promises not to tell anyone. Pelekor becomes suspicious when the guy doesn’t ask for his fee, despite explaining that he could never charge for doing a job translating a family heirloom. Not trusting him, Pelekor orders Ozoren to bar the door, the Qunari, fascinated by the guy’s skull, readily complies. Seeing no way out, and not wanting to die, Shamus runs for the window, Pelekor trips him up and kills him with his axe. Horrified by the murder the group is further horrified when Ozoren takes Shamus’ head and begins to remove the flesh. Many years later the legend of the Dwarf Killer spreads throughout Val Royeaux.

As he is being berated by the group Pelekor leaves for his room. The rest of the group decides to hide the body, Selvalar manages to unlock the door to another room and the group takes the body into the room, they also manage to clean up the crime scene in their room without leaving behind any evidence. Selvalar decides to strip Shamus to hide his identity; unfortunately the Nevarran Adventurer drops her necklace. Closing the door Selvalar realises she cannot close the door with just her knife, remembering that Pelekor can lock/unlock doors, she knocks on his room. Hearing the pounding, and having murdered and tortured numerous people; and having died twice, Pelekor has a mental breakdown, screaming at the door Pelekor hides under his bed. Not getting any response the rest of the group decides to make sure that Pelekor will be arrested by spreading evidence and blood from Pelekor’s room to the one with Shamus in it.

While hiding under the bed Pelekor falls asleep and begins to dream. He sees a huge ogre charging at him as a voice calls on him to run away, after running around avoiding the ogre and a second ogre that appears soon after; Pelkor goes on the offensive and attacks both ogres beheading them both. The voice expresses surprise at Pelekor’s choice, and the dwarf wakes up. Seeing the blood and rags around his door, Pelkor kicks the stuff down to the room Aedan’s staying in, descending downstairs, feeling very fresh and without any trace of the breakdown that he suffered early today, he decides to sell the treasure. While at the same time Bertrand visits Garatt and arranges to take part in the Purifier ritual the next night.

At the same time Crastis, Bertrand, and Aedan decide to get ready for their assassination mission, having been tasked by Edwin to kill Lord Conte, an Orlesian noble who is attempting to prevent any trade deal with the Imperium, in order to achieve this the three are given theatre tickets and fake names: Briala, Bertrand de Champs, and a bodyguard respectively. After buying some poison, Bertrand and Aedan nearly have to sleep with the proprietor to gain a discount; the group goes to the theatre.

Arriving at the theatre the three must check their weapons before they are shown up to the VIP box. Entering the room the trio see Lord Conte and his wife, after being offered wine and introducing each other Lord Conte reveals he is actually Arl Lennon Ryer, one of the conspirators who killed Moria Therin and supposedly died during the Battle of the River Dane, when Aedan calls him out on this fact Ryer doesn’t deny it. Returning to the discussions Ryer explains that Tevinter poses a grave threat to the rest of Thedas and as long as they remain focuses on the Qunari they will not try to conquer their former territories. Part way through Crastis gets up to hand the poison to Aedan, returning to her seat they continue discussions, half way through the meeting Ryer orders Aedan to get him some wine and ham slices, having poisoned both Aedan readily hands both over to Ryer, who attempts to continue the discussion but starts to cough and then keels over dead.

Pretending to be shocked by the death, everyone in the room stands up. After checking the body, Conte’s wife runs over to get help. She stops at the door and locks it, turning around she states that Conte promised her she could kill them if he died, revealing a sword the groups do battle. Aedan, managing to get the drop on the wife/bodyguard, smashes a bottle against her head which does little damage and he is left with a shard. Bertrand manages to find a hidden sword, while Crastis, who managed to sneak in her staff, attacks with an arcane lance. Aedan manages to deal a lot of damage before the wife can attack again, stabbing her in the chest, while Bertrand finishes her off with his new bastard sword. Seeing the death in the room and realising that no one has noticed they decide to leave. Bertrand realises that if they leave it will be considered a grave insult, Aedan decides to just roll with it. As they leave the maître d' approaches asking where they’re going, Bertrand explains that the play was insulting to him; the maître d' explains that it is an Orlesian classic. Refusing to listen to any begging and offers to meet with the theatre director, the trio leave with their stuff just as the maître d' walks upstairs to bring a fresh bottle of wine to Lordy and Lady Conte.

Arriving back at the Inn the group begins to get ready for sleep. Finding out that Pelekor moved the blood trail, Aedan goes upstairs and tries to clean it up. At the same time Colonel Febre arrives at the inn with a bunch of guards and arrests Ozoren and Selvalar, Aedan also hears that they are also seeking him, he runs out the window to escape justice. Fabre orders a chase of the Ferelden lord, who is caught a few hours later. All three are taken to prison.

Meanwhile at the inn, Pelekor tells the group that he has converted the teasure, selling it for 200 more gold than he said he would, Pelekor pockets the 200 plus his commission and gives the rest (split between the six) to the others. Soon after Kynedrin arrives and explains to the group that they have attracted interest from a Lady Albinson who knows how to get access to Blaen, apparently Blaen is attending a party later this week and Albinson can get them access, explaining that they need to be at her manor by eleven o’clock in the morning. After explaining this all Kynedrin realises that three of their number are missing, Pelekor gives Kynedrin 200 gold each for the three members (taken from their share of the treasure) to get the trio out of prison as a bribe. Agreeing, Kynedrin leaves for the prison while the rest of the group settles in to sleep.

Abelard has a dream of his old mentor Pancake the Bewildered who offers him a bottle of alcohol, a voice in his head tells him to trust in the bottle. Agreeing with the voice and trusting his mentor the alcoholic takes the bottle and drinks it, the liquid burns down his throat and the mage feels a burning sensation on his palm, seeing the weird brand being burned into his hand. Abelard screams in pain, and wakes up, looking at his hand, Abelard sees the brand on his hand, deciding to hide the mark Abelard cuts the palm of his hand open and wraps it in a bandage. Meanwhile Bertrand dreams of his father and his time training to be a Templar.

Meanwhile at the prison, as dawn breaks the trio of Selvalar, Ozoren, and Aedan awaken and are ushered into a large interrogation room. Fabre appears and tells the three the crimes they’ve been charged with (murder, arson, and murder, respectively). He informs the group that he doesn’t care about the charges, and offers the trio a deal, in return for going to a party at Lady Senova’s estate and informing the guards of when Blaen and purifier leader Ardal go off in private together he will drop the charges and the trio will leave the city and never come back. After agreeing to the deal, the trio get their stuff, receive their invites, and leave the prison.

Leaving the prison the trio find Kynedrin muttering to himself and pacing up and down the street outside the prison. Questioning what the dwarf is doing, Kynedrin explains that he was coming to use their treasure share to bribe their freedom, Aedan is sceptical but shrugs and takes the money off the dwarf and divvies up their shares. Realising that the money is not enough Kynedrin explains that Pelekor has the money. Arriving back at the inn Kynedrin takes full credit for getting the three out of prison. Seeing Pelekor surrounded by several individuals Aedan goes straight over to him, pissed off that he had to take the wrap for Pelekor’s crime and that he hasn’t gotten his full share, and starts to berate the dwarf. Pelekor’s two bodyguards stand in between Aedan and their employer. Just as Aedan prepares to draw his weapon and attack, a feeling of calm serenity washes over the Ferelden, and he forgets all about wanting the money or taking the wrap for Pelekor. Seeing Aedan forget all about attacking and just go back to the table and leave the dwarf alone, Crastis and Bertrand begin to worry about Aedan.

Kynedrin then takes this time to discuss Lady Albinson’s interest in the group with Aedan, Ozoren, and Selvalar. While talking about this some of the group question why they should go after Blaen, both Abelard and Aedan speak up stating that they fully support going after Blaen.

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Chapter Eight
The Sewers and Another Skull

Following their fight at the docks, the group decides to recuperate and take Ozoren to a doctor to fix his broken hand. Finding a back alley doctor in the Prattling Prince Inn, the group manages to get the Qunari’s hand bandaged up and buy a mysterious blue vial. Completing the mission the group goes back to the Moonlight Cat Inn, while having dinner Kynedrin comes in and informs the group that he has arranged the job that the group has to do with the Grey Wardens. He explains that the Grey Wardens are looking for some something called the Cache of Amadis, and that they are going to split the jewels and gold. Kyedrin also discloses that he has over heard the Grey Wardens mentioning some sort of weapon. Realising they will have to be up early in the morning, the group decides to go to bed early.

Dreaming strange dreams, Crastis dreams of her old master before the scene shifts to someone calling himself the Dread Wolf. Abelard dreams of his old mentor Pancake who tells him not to be afraid, before he becomes a mummy and whispers the word: Above. Aedan also has another dream, he sees his home, Castle Cousland, in the distance, there are trumpets, people are cheering, and guards stand ready to accept him, a voice whispers telling him to: “take it, it is yours by right”, Aedan desiring his right as ruler and to gain power, something that was never gonna happen with his brother still alive, walks into the castle as the people applaud and cheer him, he takes his place on a throne, a voice whispers: “I knew you were a fool, son of Cousland.” The scene falls away, and Aedan is branded with a mark he has never seen before. Waking up he sees the same brand on his chest.

Coming downstairs for breakfast, Selvalar passes Bertrand the note he found in the black book, reading it outload the writer believed that they were being chased by something, urging the future reader to destroy the book. Aedan also realises that the chain the writer was talking about must refer to the Chain of Andoral, which is myth, explaining that the chain is supposedly made from the Old God Andoral’s scales. Believing the book to be cursed the group decides to destroy the book. Seeing the same mark on the letter as on his chest, Aedan becomes very worried and grabs the book setting it the fireplace with wood and other flammable objects. Although the fire roars the book is just singed, taking the book out of the fire and wrapping it back up in the Selvalar’s scarf, deciding to put destroying the book on the back burner for now, the group, minus Pelekor who disappeared before everyone woke up, travels with Kynedrin to meet the Grey Wardens.

Stopping to buy supplies for the travel underground, the group meets with the three wardens: the warrior Riordan, the mute thief Killian, and the elven mage Maxence. Descending down into the sewers, Aedan orders his dog to stay behind, Maxence summons a wisp of light to see by, travelling down the disgusting sewer, the group spots several figures out in the darkness, Riordan explains that they are the les gens de l’égout the bottom rung of society in Val Royeaux. While walking Killian gets close to Crastis and attempts to flirt with her with his eyes, the elf acts receptive but isn’t interested. Moving over to Selvalar, Killian tries the act again but the Nevarran isn’t interested, so the thief steals her money. Seeing the theft, Aedan calls the thief out about it, pretending to know nothing Riordan swats the thief who sheepishly gives the Nevarran her money back. After this the group is attacked by a large force of ragged pale sewer people, who are easily beaten back thanks to Grey Wardens and the two warriors. During the battle Abelard uses Walking bomb to explode one of his enemies scaring the other starving enemies away. Maxence rounds on Abelard for causing an explosion as it could have caused a methane explosion killing them and potentially taking out half of the city. Riordan manages to calm the elven mage down. Continuing on the group eventually reaches a dead end with a wooden door. Taking out a key Riorden opens the door and the others pile into the small cave. Seeing a hole and another ladder the group descends. Climbing for much longer than the previous ladder down into the sewer, Crastis, Bertrand, and Abelard lose their footing, but thankfully are saved by Killian, Aedan, and Selvalar respectively.

Managing to reach the bottom of the hole without another incident, the group finds themselves in a pitch black cave; summoning the wisp again the group sees spider webs covering most of the walls. Managing to navigate the twisting maze-like hallways of the caves, the group avoids many creatures; manage to defeat a cave beetle swarm and a pack of giant rats, before finding themselves in a very large cave hall. Avoiding the giant spiders they navigate their way to the back of the cave. Hearing something muttering and moving about in the blackness up ahead, the group stops and Maxence send the wisp on ahead. The group sees an ancient blind emaciated naked female elf, surprised by the sight of her down here in the dark; the group approaches and hears her muttering about some bat. The group attempts to ask a few questions but none seem to get through to the woman, after asking why she’s down here the woman becomes lucid for a moment, she mutters something about stealing bread, being beaten, and running away; she also asks: “why did you leave?”.  It is then that Aedan notices the brand, the same one he has, on the woman’s thigh, when he asks about it the woman flips out and attacks everyone. Although she is old she is string and nimble, able to dodge the group’s attacks and deal tremendous damage right back, managing to knock Crastis out cold. She is finally put down by Killian who stabs the woman in the back with both of his blades. Releasing a sigh of death, the elven woman cries as she mutters: “freedom, at last”, just as she falls down dead. Her corpse begins to rapidly age and becomes bones before their eyes. Wanting to add another skull to his collection, Ozoren picks up the skull and names it Deirdre.

Looking over the rest of the cave, the group discovers a section where the old elf evidentially slept, the wall beside it is covered with scratch marks and the word why, near the bottom is also written: “why did you leave why”. The group eventually find the cache, after checking it for traps, they lift it out of the hole it’s buried in. Opening the chest up they discover a bundle of clothes, a pair of rusted swords, and a large pile of gold and jewels. The Grey Wardens mutter to each other that it’s not here, when asked what they’re talking about Riordan explains that they have been looking for the Chain of Andoral, a magical device that can supposedly manipulate the spirits of the Fade, the Wardens are seeking the chain in order to face down the Fifth Blight that has broken out in Ferelden. This piece of news startles the group, the Wardens also explain that they’ve been banned from crossing into Ferelden and have no way to stop the Blight before it spreads. Aedan, who acts confrontational, tells the Wardens that he heard that there order killed his king; Riordan responds that they know nothing about this and hope to investigate when they manage to get into the country; this diffuses the situation from becoming violent.

Noticing the weird connection between the letter, the elf, and the chain, the group explains about the book and letter. Riorden looks over the letter and explains that it looks to be written by a mad man, Maxence flicks through the book using his knife (the group explains the book is probably cursed), he explains that the book is probably written in Ancient Tevene, and that they should take it to a linguistics professor at the university. Just before the group leaves the Wardens promise not to tell anyone about what occurred down here and to keep their knowledge of the book quiet. With that done the group navigates their way back through the caves and the sewer and emerges back where they entered from. Fenrir also bounds back up to his master.

Crastis approaches Maxence and asks if he knows anyone where she can get poisons from, although he warns her not to kill anyone, he states that he knows of a back street doctor in the Prattling Prince Inn. Killian also comes up to Crastis and leaves her note asking her to write him. The three then bid the group goodbye telling them to contact the three if they are ever in danger.

 

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Chapter Seven
Dream Quest and Time Travel

Back at the Inn Pelekor decides to visit the library at the University of Orlais. However along the way he notices he is being followed by Selvalar and Bertrand, as he wants to go on his own Pelekor decides to stop of at a café to dodge them, he asks the barista if there is anywhere in the city that he can get weapon training. The barista suggests the Academie des Chevaliers which is the best training facility in the city, however knowing that the dwarf can’t afford that, he recommends an ex-soldier at the Prancing Unicorn who can train him. Arriving to find the drunken man, he is told to come back in three hours. Arriving back at the appointed time, Pelekor is trained in the art of wearing heavier armor. Pelkor then spends the rest of the day sleeping; the dwarf then experiences something for the first time in his life a dream, seeing his brothers and a diamond.

Selvalar, continuing on to the library, manage to get past the guard and decide to go their separate ways once inside. Selvalar finds an old heavily damaged book in a glass case, managing to steal the book without anyone noticing, he hightails it back to the Inn. Bertrand, failing to find any information on Blaen, decides to spend the day reading about religion.

Aedan, who had not done much the past day, decides to go shopping for new armor and picks up the masks the group had ordered the previous day. Returning to the Inn, he meets with Selvalar who shows him the book, Aedan tells him it is from Ancient Tevinter and probably has something to do with the Old Gods, and they also discover a note written in Orlesian, which neither of them read.

At the same time on the Dream Quest Ozoren and Abelard travel to the Belle Marché looking for Fabian. After failed attempts at threatening, smashing a prized pot used to collect money for the poor, and the theft of two carrots and a cabbage, they finally manage to find Fabian. After some more threatening, they get Fabian to lead them to his gang’s hideout. After two failed escape attempts, Fabian leads them to the hideout, and then manages to get out of Ozoren’s grip. He is then killed when hit by an Arcane Lance and a throwing axe at the same time. Hearing the comotion outside, a group of three thugs exit the hideout and attack the group. Rein and Abelard manage to kill one, before Ozoren kills two in a cool display of acrobatics and dexterity, the coolness then disappears when he cuts the head off one of the thugs, naming the head Jeff, he begins to carry it around with him thoroughly freaking everyone out. After calling for the remaining drug dealers to come out, Ozoren kicks down the door, the sight of the seven foot ox-man clutching their friend’s head causes the two thugs to surrender. After giving up all the gold they had in the hideout, they let the two go. Rein then locates the Lyrium detoxifier, just before Ozoren sets the whole place on fire, his second arson of the day. Following this, the three return to Rein’s house where he administers the detoxifier to his wife, once she shows improvement Rein takes Ozoren aside and deals with his demon problem, but not before he burns Jeff down into a skull out of annoyance. After Ozoren has drunken the prepared potion he begins to feel woozy and hallucinate, as Rein checks the Qunari’s Fade signature Ozoren notices that the mages eyes glow momentarily pink but disregards it in his tricked state of mind. After a few minutes Rein announces that he can’t find any sign of a demon. As the two prepare to leave, Rein pulls Abelard aside and tells him that he had a dream the other day that involved Abelard’s mentor Pancake the Bewildered, who told him to tell Abelard that “they are coming”, and to “trust in the bottle.”

At the same time, Crastis continues to the Docks hoping to finish her mission. She locates someone who looks like the courier, upon approach she realises she has been duped and that the woman waiting for her is none other than the apprentice of her ex-master. As she attempts to run away she is chased by two hired thugs, fortunately she manages to lose them in the maze of back streets. After a failed attempt at disguising herself, the elf returns to the Inn and requests the help of everyone (except Pelekor who is sleeping). The whole group returns to the docks in full force, the apprentice (or witch as they dub her) approaches them and asks to buy Crastis from them, Aedan requests a proof of ownership, which the woman happily obliges, he then promptly tears it up before stating that “people aren’t property”, to which she says back: “she’s an elf, their barely people.” The two groups then engage in combat. At the start of battle Crastis falls into the water and needs rescuing. Aedan and Bertrand both attack the apprentice together knock9ng her down, while Ozoren in an unlikely hero move goes to rescue Crastis, lowering himself from one hand he manages to grab hold of the drowning mage, but just he is about to pull them both up one of the hired thugs uses his hammer to break Ozoren’s hand, thankfully quick dexterity allows him to swap hands, but he lets go of Crastis to do it. Seeing what is happening, Selevar aims her arrows at the thug hoping to cover Ozoren. Meanwhile the mage rising from the attack reveals herself as a bloodmage casting a red arcane shield and launching an arcane bolt at her attackers, while Abelard attempts to counter with his own Arcane Lance, however thanks to the shield it is reflected back on Abelard, while Bertrand feels his strength being sapped. Both Aedan and Bertrand attempt to attack again, Bertrand’s weapon is reflected, but Aedan manages to pierce her heart killing her. With the death of their boss the two goons try to flee the battlefield, but Aedan manage to take one down before the other flees. Meanwhile Ozoren, desperate to save Crastis for some reason only he could answer throws caution to the wind and attempts to grab her with his broken hand, but can’t stand the pain and lets her go for the second time. As the elf sinks beneath the waves Ozoren is pulled up by Aedan, while Crastis manages to grab onto the docks and clamber up herself. Ozoren, whose broken hand had been in dirty water, begins to feel a painful throb in his hand. He then stands up; pulls out his sword and attempts to cut off the apprentices head, but for some reason can’t bring himself to do so. The Qunari sheaths the sword and cradles his broken hand.

Crastis then spots the real courier on the next dock watching them. After giving the passcode they exchange the package for another scrap of paper wone that contains futher instructions for another job.

The next day Pelekor awakens from his dream and heads to the library at the crack of dawn, waiting until the building opens before entering. He speaks to the librarian and asks about the Article of Thiags, the librarian admits he has never heard of that item, Pelekor believes he is lying and offers money. Taking the dwarf deeper into the library, the librarian explains that he has already sold the article to the Grand Cathedrial, when Pelekor again points out that he is obviously lying the librarian attempts a run for it but the Dwarf easily catches him. Threatening him with his knife, the librarian tells him that the article is back at his apartment and he can give it to him. Believeing that the librarian is still lying to him Pelekor stabs him in both of his legs, realising that the librarian is repeating his story and is probably telling the truth apologises and carries the injured librarian to his apartment. Leaving the man to find the article, Pelekor notices that someone is trying to break in from the back window. Opening the window causing the wannabe burglar to lose their grip and fall to the ground. After a few insults back and forth between the dwarven burglar team on the ground and Pelekor, he shoots the dwarven leader causing the others to flee leaving their injured friends. The librarian, having heard the commotion, emerges from his room and asks what’s happening, Pelekor lies saying it’s nothing and the man decides not to push. He then hands over the article and tells him to “get the fuck out of my apartment.” Leaving, Pelekor then travels to the Dwarven consulate and addresses a letter and package to his brother containing the Article sending both off to him. He then leaves and returns to the Inn.

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