After the battle we questioned Lady Kassandra Numesti more closely and got more detail on the situation in Fort Drelev. It looks like the Tiger Lord barbarians, goaded and assisted by Pitax, threatened Fort Drelev. Baron Drelev turned over control of the town to them without a fight, even turning over townspeople to the invaders as hostages.
This brings up a pretty conundrum for us (and by us, I mean the Duchess). Fort Drelev is well beyond the boundaries of our original writ; under it, we have no right to move in that direction. However, in attacking Tatzlford, a holding of nir’Duin, they’ve effectively declared war on us. Thus we certainly have the right to reply in kind. However, there is an additional danger we must consider: By all accounts, Pitax has a hand in this. How big a hand is still to be determined. Moving against Drelev could involve Pitax if Irovetti is backing the Baron in a big way.
We discussed the possibilities at length and decided to do a reconnaissance of Fort Drelev before moving with any greater show of force. Accordingly, our merry little group will be heading for Fort Drelev to do some undercover scouting to determine how best to proceed. Lady Kissandra has given us a ring of hers and said if we give it and a Gypsy Peony bloom to one Satinder Morn, the proprietor of the local gambling hall, Satinder can be a valuable ally for us. I sensed there was something Kissandra wasn’t telling us about that situation, but further questioning elicited no more information. My gut tells me Lady Kissandra can be trusted; I just hope she’s not hiding something dangerous to us.Before we set out, Oskar let us know he’d received word we should return to Castle Candle Mere. Myriel had arrived with an important package for the Duchess…
The package turned out to be Menelwen, a…sister? cousin? I’m not sure I have all the Surtova relationships worked out…of Saraiya. She’s fleeing a plot against her (A Surtovan plot? Who’d have thought it?!) aided by a former teacher of Saraiya’s. She’s a cute kid but she’ll have to do a lot of growing up if she’s to survive her family, I fear.
While the full council was together in Candlemere and after hearing of deteriorating conditions in Brevoy, Myriel pushed for a proclamation of nir’Duin as an independent state. There was much discussion (some heated) but in the end there could be only one decision. With Founder’s Day coming up again, it was decided the official declaration would be made then and Saraiya would be crowned Queen of nir’Duin. I confess to a certain personal pleasure and excitement with this decision (though I strove not to let it influence my recommendation unduly) as it is an important step in my own future plans.
There was also a bit of diplomacy to be carried out. Mik Mak announced his people wished to terminate the agreement between the Soot Scales and us! Further questioning indicated the kobolds were just stung over the exploitation of a mithral mine discovered near the borders of our respective territories. That was settled amicably. We also received a delegation of Nomen centaurs who reported their satisfaction with our first year of association. They also indicated a desire to enter into an agreement with us much as the Soot Scales had done, a proposal which we eagerly accepted.
The court session broke up amidst much celebration and fanfare.
And then the portal appeared…