Shadows in the Abyss

The King of Pirates
And it is, it is a glorious thing to be a Pirate King
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Vision of a New World
Tyrnn travels the branches of Oldrim to visit the New World
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The Giant King Falls
Battle with an Ancient Foe in the flooded ruins of Gozreh's temple.
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Space Dragons, Cosmic Giants and Valley Druids
Altan turns up the heat, Andrew becomes a man, Olo almost dies
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Flaming Hair, A Murder of Crows and an Ancient Plague
The story goes back to its trippy roots...
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Time Travel, Megafauna and Very Bad News
Altan plays his first card, Wei Wei begins his cosmic quest...
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Ronins, Shamisens and Empty Promises
The Second Betrayal...

Leaving the destruction in Lanzhou in our wake we set sail once more, this time for Windsong Monastery, my old home. A bittersweet feeling. In some ways I dreaded the return and the disappointment my Master would feel when I could not stay to take his place; but to return to the place of my childhood, and the simple and peaceful pleasures to be found in monastery life, would be a balm from the betrayal and intrigue that had taken place since our last visit. This was not to be the case however.

Jacob, my counterpart from Catalan’s airship, had returned to the monastery. Master Hatori had secluded himself and seemed worn, tired and stretched too thin. Mei was distracted, her focus elsewhere and her infrequent returns to the temple should have warned of what was to come if I had not been too blinded by the chance to rest to heed the warning of the Guardian of Windsong.

A trip out to the nearby town seemed positive at first, we heard that the followers of Zon Kuthon had been less active in the area lately, and the chance to let loose was only enhanced by a dance and moonlight walk with Mei. Unfortunately this was cut short by the discovery of multiple bodies. The reason for the cults inactivity became clear when we came across bodies in the road, leading to the vast slaughter that had taken place in their grounds. None were spared. Monks, priests, civilians and even the children laid out to rot, only the coolness of the night helped to keep the stench of decay at bay.

Upon returning to Windsong, it soon became clear who had done this. Mei. I thought she could change when I spared her life previously; but the years spent fighting off enemy forces, only to have them return later, had worn down her commitment to defend. It would have been hard for me to cast judgement for while I have tried to avoid the death of innocents in our journey, I have some blood on my hands will not wash off. Master Hatori however, judged this a grievous breech of the principles he taught and he cast Mei out of the monastery, never to return.

This proved to be a short lived exile as she returned that night in an attempt to steal the relic of the Monastery, the Orb of Storms. I feared a battle to the death as I confronted her, demanding that she return the orb and repent for her actions against the followers of Zon Kuthon. It was not my place to repeal Hatori’s decision, but I vainly hoped genuine repentance might be enough to allow her to stay.

Mei could not do it though. She returned the orb and left peacefully, to wander where the winds would take her but without a place to call home. Life without a home is hard. Life without a family or purpose is empty. It is the people in our lives that drive us onward in our journeys and allow us to become more than we were yesterday.

Hatori took this hard. One student a betrayer, one a gun-wielding mercenary, and myself. He said his goodbyes and walked into the embrace of the ocean, leaving myself or Jacob to take up the mantle of master. Most of the students have come with us on “Betwixt Two Planes”, to continue learning the path from their inadequate new teacher. Some travel with Jacob, to destinations unknown.

I’ve tried to follow the teachings of our order, to bring balance to the world and better the lives of those I could reach. But what had our recent adventures wrought? Deaths by the hundred in the Imperative. Chaos from the unravelling of the Arcanum. Murder of the Empress and her consorts. I don’t see the alternative which could have avoided war with Tirrimere and our heads on spikes, but maybe that is a failing on my part. The uncertainty claws at me even as the responsibility for these young lives adds a new burden to my life. But I must go on, I must do better and try to show these younglings my way. For it is the only way I know.

-Tyrnn Holyhand
Teacher of the Way
Acolyte of Gozreh
Master of Windsong Monastery

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Peaches, Kidnappings and Cannonfire
The First Betrayal...
  • The party is waylaid by a kraken on their journey to Lanzhou, which causes major damage to the ship. The crew beat it back into the ocean, where it drifts away and flees.
  • Arrival in Lanzhou is heralded by a very drunk Catalan meeting Aramis and explaining how upset she is at him while simultaneously buying him drinks. Aramis gets bored and wanders off.
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Old Friends, New Crewmates and Long Goodbyes
The party return to Freeport to catch up with some familiar faces
  • Return to Freeport
  • Aramis gets drunk with Easton and Karahil
  • Tyrnn and Mara celebrate the lantern festival
  • Olo investigates the Wormwood bank, to discover a goblin named Morgath is pulling strings
  • Met with Mole Splintershill, who arranged a new crew and some smuggling work
  • Pialoosa tipped the party off about the noodle stall in Lanzhou.
  • Party is tipped off by Karahil that Silverfin and Chadwick are in Lanzhou, and that they’ll be off guard.
  • I believe you got Andrew rezzed somewhere.
  • Tyrnn dreams about the Stormflower, fading into dust on a cliff edge.
  • The party leaves Freeport in a hurry, Mara leaves the ship after saying farewell to the crew to forge her own path.
  • Sail to Lanzhou.
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Dark Night of the Soul
Down for the Count

We have looked into the cosmos and seen god. What separates halfing from automaton? Wreathed as I am in metal and gunpowder, it is my ability to define my own destiny that distinguishes me from machine. Then what is an automaton to the living? A corpse or iron and steel, animated to serve. Then what is an automaton to a machine god? What is an automaton to Deliverance? For if Deliverance governs the rules and laws of machine, the living who manipulate such machines are as much slaves to such a god as the non-living. Are the living, too, toyed with and killed for the sport of our gods? Then my destiny is not my own.

It is my torturous ability to love and to hate, to laugh and to mourn, that makes me halfing.

The Empress is dead by my hand. Her body is consumed in the fires of Bretheda.

Gentle waves lap the shores of Hellfire, a muted applause for our celebrated return. The manor and countship have passed into my hands. The weight of such wealth and property are a heavy burden on my heart; they are a dissonance with those dear to me, who surround me now, sharing in my fortune and misfortune. For all that we have won or plundered, it those that I love that is my most prized treasure. Do the dead still love? Are the non-living subject to such passions?

Marcel desires me for his own family. To become as him, a creature of the night. I should not see another sunrise. What should become of my own vitality if I should sustain myself on the vitality of others? Such power and fear, such influence and wealth, abilities and lifespan that reach far beyond those of mortals.

I receive a letter from my mother’s sister on the Seaglass Islands. Family I have known not; family I have known not that I have. I should be welcomed at Brooke’s Hollow with open arms, with love and with joy. It is my fame and influence that brings such tidings to me.

And what of my own family? The faithful crew that has travelled with me for so long? Would I cast them aside for such riches? Or cast them into a life of darkness as I keep them yet closer to me? Are the non-living subject to such passions?

A torturous choice. It is my ability to define my own destiny that distinguishes me from machine. The blood that run through my veins is my blood. The love that courses through my being is my love. I live again today. Marcel will leave for the East alone and his family will not strengthen.

My family sets sail for home. To Freeport.

Count Olo Loamsdowne-Burrows

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