I’m not sure who I address this to or who I’m writing this for. I do think that it’s time for my path to divert from the path of the rest of the pack. Hopefully not forever and not because I disagree or don’t support your decisions and life, but because I do! Please understand that my decision to step off of the path of the Druid has been made so that I can stand between the pack and the forces that are coming to destroy you. Some con protect standing with their people. Some must stand seperate to do what must be done so that the needs of entire pack can be met. I hope you understand why I must do what I am doing.
Heartrender, if you get this message take as many of your pack and anyone that follows the old ways and seek safety in the deep forest. Times are changing, but you must protect all who hold true to the old magic, it’s stronger than most realize. If you need me, send a raptor with a cloth holding your musk, and bearing the mark of my companion. I will try to come to you. Know that Char is lost to us and I have give up my role of student to take up the mantle of guardian. Walk in peace my friend, hopefully we will meet again soon.
Left in the rubble at the Den near the statue of The Mother
Back at the University of the Midwest, each member of the party copes with what has happened to them in different ways. It seems what was several weeks in Terra was just five days back on Earth. However, this had meant that they had missed most of Welcome Week and their first week of class! They scrambled to catch back up. Dr. Xerxes did not appear to teach Esoteric Mythology, rather a TA by the name of John Dough did. He did not answer any questions about Dr. Xerxes, and the content of the class seemed to revolve around strange and obscure knowledge that actually seemed to be more connected to Terra than that of Earth.
As time passed, each reacted to their experience in their own way. James stocked up on gear so he would be prepared for his return, Amethyst renewed her interested in herbalism, Dorion asked for more melee training during his ROTC sessions, Amara made sure her German Shepard Rex was always with her, Jaxson stocked up on occult books, and Raith watched a lot of Lord of the Rings while stoned. Several weeks passed uneventfully, but one day when they opened the door to the Esoteric Mythology class, a familiar tome lie waiting on the instructor’s desk. It was James who shoved the others aside and lunged at the book, and with a flash of light they were all returned to Terra.
It seems they had been gone from Terra for about a week. The goblin, Marikimar-Snap, had patiently waited for them, though the donkey they had bought had not survived that much time alone with snap and his…hungers. The party traced their path back to Sanctuary and found their payment from the previous Clan job waiting for them.
Some inquiries around town revealed that a old wise-woman who lived alone a day’s journey might be a source of answers. But upon finding her hut, it was discovered to be empty and in disarray, as though a struggle had occurred. Several tracks lead away from the hut and toward the mountains. The ROTC student and the life-time camper were able to follow the trail to a small cave that turned out to be the rear entrance to the ruins of some sort of monastery. A number of monks met the party and professed ignorance of any travelers while trying to get them to depart. When the UM students did not, the false monks attacked them. A grand battle ensued, with the party pushing their way out the cave and into the courtyard. They drive the false monks back and the monks retreat behind the crumbing walls of the central keep, firing bows. As the party takes shelter from the arrows behind a stable, the leader of what now appears to be a band of slavers shouts out a desire to parley.
After their encounter with the strange and ominous Lord Entropy, who’s corrupting infulence affected everyone in the inn (except for them), the party spent an uneasy night in Sanctuary. The next day, they discovered the that their Clan Stone was more than a glowing rock. It allowed them to access a magical jobs index that connected the more adventurous clans with those who needed their assistance. Looking at the jobs available, and in need of cash, they agreed to escort a small group through an area that has reported bandit problems. The caravan turns out to be owned by someone named Barnatum, who claims to be a Power. In particular, the Power of Novelty and The New. He hungers for new expereinces and senses the group has a treasure trove of them. A number of the students agree to “trade” him their first expereinces with something in exchange for items, those memories fading to gray and crumbling away. A strange sensation for those who signed Barnatum’s contract.
The escort missions turns violent when a group of hume bandits ambushes the caravan. The party, having been normal college students barely a week ago, suddenly find themselves faced with people were trying to kill them. Previously they had fought monsters, but now they were faced with the prospect of killing real people. Each faced this in their own way, with varying amounts of angst and blood. But they did prevail, and after dealing with the surviving bandits, returned to Sanctuary for their second job.
They met a Gria, a human with draconic features, who needed help harvesting Bloodsap from special trees deep in the forest. The trees turned out to be hundreds of feet tall, and a long climb left James far behind. Those who were quicker to the top found the Bloodsap pods under attack from Striges, and soon they were as well. Blood drain left several of them anemic, but careful use of safety ropes prevented any drastic falls.
After resting at the foot of the great tree, they found a hidden tunnel at the base that lead to a room containing what appeared to be the same large, ancient book that originally brought them to this strange world. There was a surprising amount of debate about what to do, but when someone tried to pick up the book it sprung open at a touch and sucked them all back through back to the UM Library, though several days had passed.
After escaping from the underground complex of their arrival, suddenly the realities of surviving in the wild were very real. After an interesting night of camping, the UM students were suddenly attacked by strange creatures. The ensuing melee was an education. Afterward, the party gained two very different traveling companions: the Viera they rescued and the only Baknamy to survive the attack. Making their way to a small town called Sanctuary, they worked to outfit themselves. A very strange encounter with a mysterious man left an impression on some.
In this, the first session, we met our protagonists as they dealt with their academic adviser before the start of Fall Semester at the University of the Midwest, registered for the Xerxes Scholarship, which they didn’t remember applying for, were directed to the library when Dr. Xerxes never appeared, and found an interesting book. From there, things got a bit strange. Luckily, several students prepared journal entries about what happened.
James: 1st Entry
Amethyst: 1st Entry Amethyst
Amara: 1st Entry Amara