Continuing our approach, we set the ship down in some open farmlands near the church. The residents were quite shocked, but were somewhat more accepting once we revealed our identity and my affiliation with the Fossil. Even so, the villagers were taken aback by our vessel, and by our, ah, “companion” that Killroy dragged along with him.
Venturing to the church, we were greeted by my mentor, The Keeper. Not even I know how old he is. The man is enshrouded in mystery. Before we could relate our ill tidings, he told us of their own: The church had been assailed just one night prior by a group of plunderous bandits! They stole the Sphere of Planar Mastery, and their exotic fighting style was enough to outpace even my mentor who would have fought them off! What’s more, my good friend AJ’s sword was sliced cleanly in twain by some kind of spatial hoo ha magic! What a strange world it is.
“Borrowing” a detective kit from a lovely young flower of a wizard, we explored deep within the sanctum for any clues that might lead us to our Old Man Jenkins. I found several footprints that looked to be the result of heated combat, and The Keeper confirmed this. Judging by the spacing of them, it looked as though these enemies were capable of some limited form of flight, and as they disappeared right outside the warded walls of the church, also of teleportation. Curiously, their footprints were slightly smaller than that of an average size person of fighting stature, but what could it mean?
Rubbing my temples, I decided it was no longer time to use this kit, and grabbing the moonstone from its pedestal, I clutched it to my chest and beseeched it for its guidance. A yellow orb in the night sky, grand in stature and fullness, taunted the landscape. A wolf cried out and was immediately silenced.
According to the Keeper, this could be a vision of one of our own’s impending doom. Aurora, a young longtooth shifter, had foolishly gone out on her own to investigate a meteor impact site, and has not been seen for many hours. We set out post haste to take matters into our own hands.
As we closed the distance to the impact site, we found both footprints and, thanks to Gough’s incredible talent of perception (I am at times decidedly not convinced that man is blind, yet at other times I am truly confounded by his apparent lack of sight. This man is an interesting one, yet one of my most dependable allies.) we heard several voices up ahead, discerning them to be three ogres, a young woman, and a man.
I tried to effect a sneak attack, but as I emerged from the bushes my jaw dropped, and perhaps it was the noise of it hitting the ground that alerted them to my presence. These ogres were using their man parts as a bludgeon! The absolute shamelesness! Had they no decency? Surely even Ogres know better! Even so, the preposterous size of these “clubs” was quite impressive. As we engaged them, however, it became apparent that the size of a weapon is not important, but rather how one wields said weapon. (Though it is important to note that my weapon is both large AND expertly wielded, as is true for the rest of our party, now that i think of it…) We made short work of the ogres, but I struggled with the old man, who was secretly a pervert who transformed into a delicate she ogre wearing the gaudiest of pantaloons i had ever seen. I was so taken aback by his gall that I was unable to focus on my swordsmanship and could not overcome his defense. As his friends fell, the deviant cowardly withdrew by turning into a cloud of gas and flew away. He did, however, leave behind his ogre pantaloons, which Killroy did affix most comicly to our prisoner’s head.
Aurora, who had been protecting my baby, thanked us for rescuing her. We took her back to the church, where we spoke again with the Keeper, this time disclosing all we had learned of Kupola, the Iron Bulwark, Vanilla Slice, and dead Tiamat slumbering within our sun. He racked his brain for answers, and suggested that perhaps the reason so many extraterrestrial foes had come here was that they were drawn to Tiamat’s power. In any case, we now face three foes for certain.
The agents of the Dome, whose wicked shell must be broken to ensure Anarchy and the freedom of All,
The spy ring of Vecna, whose shadowy dealings must not go forgotten
The Iron Bulwark, tied to Bane, whose military might threatens to burn this continent to the ground.
These times are troubling indeed. We decided it was best to go to Layneworth and the Ladder at this point, to seek information about the North and the Bulwark. Perhaps in the midst of this brutal war, we would find answers. We slept for the night, enjoying the hospitalities of the church, but Kilroy went off to finish the dark deed demanded of him by his God. Nobody told him of the phalluses that had been drawn upon his face, and perhaps that is for the best. The man preserved some dignity, at least within his own mind. I hope that he renounces his evil past in the next life, so that he might congregate in joy with Omanyte.
Abba Leno, Red Knight of the Helix