Shaintar_J&L_6th Company of the Silver Unicorn

The Order of the Silver Rose
Under the Command of Dame Jennifer of Thornwood

The Order of the Silver Rose

Established in 3052 by House Lyonn as an independent order of knighthood. Called The Virtuous Order of the Silver Rose until its reformation, and subsequent move to Thornwood in 3122.

Colors: Black, Silver, Red

Heraldry: Silver Rose upon a black field

Knights normally wear a scarlet cloak with the heraldry of the Order on their shield.

Knight Commander Verlan Sartren – First Knight and Commander of the Virtuous Order of the Silver Rose. Knighted for service by House Lyonn, and given directive to establish the Order. Remained Commander until 3063 when he died honorably on the field of battle, defending the kingdom.

The Order prospered and grew under the leadership of Commander Verlan. Expanding to 250 knights, with associated squires and support staff. Their headquarters were Located in the city of Deridius, Galea.

Commander Verlan set about making the Order a force for good in Galea. He established the idea that all were welcome to join, and those worthy would become knights. It was a truly different way of doing things, and word spread far and wide of the opportunity it presented.

Knight Commander Forwin Verlain – Second Knight Commander of the Order. 3063 through 3087.

Upon Commander Verlan’s death in 3063, Knight Forwin was elevated to Commander by the Order. His views on membership and knighthood were somewhat different than the former Commander. While all were still welcome to join the order, it was the rare commoner who could attain knighthood, regardless of service. He instituted the “entrance tithe”. At first this was a nominal fee, intended to offset the cost of support and training for those entering service.

Forwin continued the work of the previous Commander, gaining the Order an even larger reputation for good works. He chose their battles carefully, aiming for success as well as visibility. Under his leadership the Order recruited successfully, able to field 800 knights.

Commander Forwin was killed by assassination in 3087. The assasin was never found, but rumor claimed the Prelacy of Camon to be responsible.

Knight Commander Anson Combes – Third Knight Commander of the Order. 3087 through 3122.

Knight Anson was Lieutenant Commander of the Order, and assumed the leadership role upon the death of Commander Forwin. Under his command the order expanded enormously, their ranks swelling to 1400 knights by 3122.

The entrance tithe put in place by Commander Forwin was unofficially expanded. Those who could pay more would achieve a better rank within the Order, though only the nobility were ever to be knighted. Anson was a creature of both comfort and politics. The Order grew quite wealthy, though in reality it did very little. Life at their headquarters was beyond luxurious for Anson and his coterie. The knights didn’t receive the same kind of excess as their commander, but lived extremely well. The servants were servants. The squires were treated as slaves, to be used for any purpose thought up by their betters.

In 3113 Jennifer of Westford was accepted into the order, and assigned as squire to Dame Lorrie Drawnel. Dame Lorrie died upon the field of battle, and Jennifer knighted for bravery in the face of overwhelming odds by the surviving knights in 3117. A few weeks after being knighted, she was sent to join the 6th Company of the Silver Unicorn. The order did not see her again until 3122.

While they did not see her, they did hear of her. The 6th Company of the Silver Unicorn achieved fame at the battle of Eagle Watch, moving on to other exploits over the next several years. Commander Anson saw this as a fortuitous opportunity to promote the Order, thereby promoting his own wealth and power. Over these several years, the house of Lyonn became more and more concerned with the excesses hinted at within the ranks of the Order. Eventually it was even noticed by the King, though the true extent would not be known until 3122.

As Commander Anson got news of the 6th Company, he sent word far and wide to illustrate the achievements of the Order. Jennifer’s actions in service to Galea were made the actions of the Order. Each resulting in a feast to which any sympathetic nobility would be invited. Their support and donation to the Order grew with each event.
In 3122 Commander Anson was made aware of a particularly noteworthy action on the part of the 6th Company. He immediately began preparation for a feast, having invitations sent out to an even larger group. A mistake was made on the part of the Order’s scribes: Dame Jennifer was invited.

On the evening before the feast, Dame Jennifer arrived at the Order’s headquarters and allowed into their inner council chambers to speak with the Commander and 6 Lieutenants. By sworn account of all those present, she was unarmed when she entered. Voices were heard raised in argument, then screams. Before anyone outside could get to the door, it was opened from the inside. Dame Jennnifer stood in it, drenched in blood, the Commander’s blade in her hand. All inside the room were dead. Accounts vary as to what next happened, but that night the number of knights in the Order was halved. Some left of their own accord, some were forcibly made to leave, others were never seen again. None of those who left will discuss their departure.

The next morning the remaining knights elevated Dame Jennifer to Commander by acclaim. The planned feast was held, though many of those invited chose to leave rather than remain. 2 weeks later Commander Jennifer received a summons from the King of Galea, and upon attending him was commanded to move the Order outside the borders of the kingdom.

The Order was reformed as the Order of the Silver Rose, and moved to the site where the town of Thornwood now stands. Approximately 700 knights, 2100 squires and a large number of support staff were relocated from Deridius.

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The Shining Tower Saga
Elindur's Notes

Dramatis Personae:

Elindur – male Alakar Soulguard Druid/Archer (and your humble notetaker)
Dame Jennifer of Thornwood – female human Knight-Commander of the Order of the Silver Rose
Erasmus Flint – male human Black Lantern spy
Anguisss – male Dregordian warrior
Chiron – male Eldakar (now Faelakar) sorcerer
Alojzy – male Builder arcmancer/arcfire engineer
Snorri – female Dwarven druid and Lore Warden

Lysle – Squire to Dame Jennifer (being trained to a position of command within the Order of the Silver Rose)
Hella – Squire to Dame Jennifer (seeks to become the Librarian of the Order of the Silver Rose)
Chartran – (ex-Prelacy scout, serving Jennifer first from duty, then devotion, then ultimate love, which she comes to return)

January 24, 2015

On the 13th of Grey Winds, 3123, the 6th Company of the Silver Unicorn re-gathers at Erasmus’ call. We’re meeting at a remote roadside inn.

Upon arriving, before we can even come together a fight ensues. An arcmancer burst in, rapidly pursued by agents of the Red Store and Alien humanoids. They are swiftly defeated.

A local druid present in the inn, Idira, helps heal the party.

The archmancer is Alojzy (pronounced ah-LO-zhee). He reveals that The Project is to rebuild The Tower, which powers… arcmancy? He was working for the Red Store but is defecting.

Erasmus reveals that the Seamstress has learned that the Veil has lifted south of Shaintar enough to reveal an island, and she wants to go there. Someone who knows how to get there will be in Camden and he hopes to intercept.

The Raven arrives, transforms into an ancient Eldakar. Warns that the Seer is “involved.” Blesses our endeavor, says that Erasmus is on the right road. Is working behind the scenes to keep other great powers in check.

Erasmus has assembled a map of Builder construction projects, some of which match filament lines and loci. Seems to channel power somewhere where there’s nothing on the map or enemy projects. Alojzy thinks they’re trying to activate all crysarium in Shaintar (which will end all life…)

Interrogating Red Store survivors, learn there were 2 groups, one of which has been co-opted. Helena the Sharp (an alias of the Seamstress) leads them. Secretly ordered them to capture Erasmus & Chiron, kill everyone else, take them to Helena in Camden.

Analyzing the 2 most powerful agents, we find that they are Alien but not Wrong (eg not Darkness, Flame, or anything else we specifically really really hate). To elaborate: after careful magical study of them and the alphabet of their tattoos, it is determined that they are not from Starfall, nor from some other plane of existence – they are of this realm, but another world altogether. This mindblowing revelation ends up having no direct bearing on the rest of the story.

The Company sets off south to go around Camden and meet a ship in the next port of Venture, as the more mystically and geographically inclined realize they can extrapolate the exact position of the mysterious island. This will bypass intercepting the Seamstress’ contact, but hopefully get us there ahead of her.

Passing through a forest, we wake up sensing a powerful wave of Darkness. We find many creations of the Chimera guarding a woman doing a ritual. Fight ensues. Ultimately Jenny manifests an image of Archanon that dispatches the ritualist’s spirit just at the height of the ritual. Looks like this spot was meant to have a Builder mechanism to channel necromantic energy somewhere, but she was using it for some sort of dark ascension ritual.

Arrive in Venture to find ship waiting, the Sea Bitch, captained by Juan Villalopez. He claims they have been into the mists of the Veil before where they lost several years of time. The whole crew is kind of crazy.

January 25, 2015

(I missed this session. Notes are from the group’s recap.)

Sailed to the Mists. Attacked by a sea drake along the way. The sea drake was killed before it could do any damage.

Found the island right up against the Mists and that it was well defended. Attacked by Children of the Sea, Sea Witches, and other aquatic enemies. Despite gaining complete surprise, these enemies were also dispatched with no loss of life.

Upon reaching shore, the island’s childer defenders attacked and were hard fought. A very tough teleporting Thratchen (aka “goat boy”) and Ratzin assassin escape.

Second attack at the complex, another hard fight. Enemies included ratzin, gargoyles, minotaurs, and a second Thratchen, which does not escape. Ratzin assassin escapes again.

Now entering Builder underground complex. Still on the lookout for Ratzin assassin and Thratchen teleporter (both of whom are wounded).

January 31, 2015

Enter Builder complex through hidden waterfall entrance. An Arcfire portal activates but w/ Earth energy, and a huge fist arises – smashing the portal – and Snorri emerges. She’s been trying to catch up with us for days and gets a little Ascended help. :-)

Correlating Erasmus’ plot knowledge and direction of filament lines, Erasmus realizes that the major filament links to a place called Hispan in the Blasted Lands, where once a great house ruled from.

The local tunnels are rich in crysarium deposits. The interior of the complex is increasingly unstable deeper in we go. We enter a large chamber guarded by childer (minotaurs, ratzin, thratchen), fight ensues.

We climb an interior staircase and enter a more stable part of the complex where we come across some weary Red Store foot soldiers. The Seamstress herself is drawn out, and brings several of her Alien agents. She speaks out loud to her father, implying he’s something very powerful. Erasmus deals her killing blow, whispering greetings from the Ascended to her father. Aware that she is likely to quickly recover from a normal death, he cuts off her head and takes it with him.

The Seamstress left behind an unusual information crystal; the facility had some sort of readers, and Erasmus and Alozjy figured out how to use one to read the crystal. She also had a flying arcfire-powered ship.

“Cracking the crystal” – Seamstress was looking for the Island of Norvos to find the Heart of Norvos to take to her father for the Shining Tower, which used to be at the ancestral home of Hispan, a major node that taps directly in the center of the planet Starfall. The Seamstress is definitely the daughter of the Merchant, and is working in the field to pay off a penance. Erasmus was to be recruited or killed, as he is “the key to the Dreamer” (a Scion of the Starfather?). Also mentions of “The Patchwork Conspiracy” (a struggle between 2 houses in recent history she was behind). Julian, son of the Seer, The Crystal Lord or Crystal Tyrant is also mentioned, bonded with a shard of the Starfather (who was shattered when the original Tower was destroyed). If the Tower is re-formed it will take someone that powerful to control it. Norvos was one of the first focus crystals, used by the Scions, that became sentient and very interested in the Builders. And in fact, Norvos was the original focus crystal of Julien.

We capture a Red Store enforcer named Ferroll, who flips to Dame Jennifer. He’s a very seedy character who knows a lot about Red Store operations, but not a lot about this place.

We break through a door to upstairs, Golems confront the party and Alojzy speaks to one which is conflicted about what to do. He manages to disable a couple but one fights and is destroyed. Elindur thinks one is alive and heals it which seems to stabilize it. He befriends it; a magical bond is formed and it can speak our languages.

The golem has been sent dreams by Norvos, who transmitted that The Traveler Shayana begged Norvos to prepare a golem to meet Alojzy. It names itself John, and Erasmus dubs it John the First. Norvos must try to stop us, but wants to be free. We manage to disarm the defenses, releasing Norvos — who manifests as a crystalline humanoid.

Norvos confirms that Julian is “broken” and must be fixed or destroyed, or all will end. We must take Norvos to Julian and defeat the Tower using Norvos. Norvos senses that Julian is now bonded to a twisted shard that seeks to be redeemed and reunited with the Mother of Night. Norvos has figured out how to “borrow time” from the Mists to grant us two weeks to prepare, while outside only a day will pass.

February 1, 2015

John the First decides to stay as caretaker of the Builder facility, Squire Hella remains with him.

We spend 2 weeks researching, training, reminiscing, etc. Elindur improves Knowledge: Cosmology and Channeling, and adds Defining interest: Druid Lore. Several people, led by Dame Jennifer, train to improve their fighting skills, with good results. Erasmus spends most of his time head down researching everything he can about Julian and his plans from the records seized from the Seamstress. Alojzy prepares new arcfire devices, fits armor for people, helps Erasmus study, and finds a little time to practice combat. In this place, Alojzy succeeds at everything he sets his hand to; his mind seems to be on fire. Chiron spends time meditating and coming to terms with the changes taking place as he ascends from Eldakar to Faelakar, and stretching the limits of his sorcery.

We take the airship to Hispan, which takes a mere 3 days. On approach we realize the city emits an effect that urges us to ignore it. Alojzy is our pilot, but as a Builder seems unaffected. Alojzy appears different now, modified by arcmancy, and refers to himself as a Maker rather than merely a Builder.

Alojzy lands the ship into the highest garden platform of the Tower. A huge running fight vs. Builder forces ensues.

At the top of the stairs there is a formidable force. Alojzy recognizes their commander Marius and convinces him that Julian is going to destroy Shaintar and they agree to help.

In we go. Dame Jennifer steps in first to confront Julian alone and calls him cousin. While talking he confirms he is the son of the Seer and has flashes of precognition. He’s kind of off his rocker, and the crystal is trying to psychically influence him (and is quite bloodthirsty). Chiron pushes his archmage abilities to the limit to disconnect Julian from the crystal, while Jennifer distracts Julian with a sincere offer of familial love. A spirit of tremendous Darkness fills the crystalline armor — the Crystal Tyrant truly revealed! A fight almost ensues, but Chiron uses his new bardic skills to convince everyone of the high-powered guards in the room to turn against the Tyrant, but not before it cuts Jennifer down. It threatens us and seems to be about to teleport out when Anguisss calls on the Ascended Illiana to sing for her lost child to shatter the crystal armor.

Alozjy quickly attunes the speakers of four assault golems to create a resonance field that further focuses the Song of the Waverider into a potent force.

Elindur tries to figure out what the Tyrant is, and suddenly finds himself w/ Snorri on a field with the Ascended. They confirm it is a piece of the Starfather — the darkest part (that which would do anything to regain the love of the Mother of Night). They call us our friends, and send us back — Snorri to reinforce the Tower and Elinder to “find the crack.” The Tyrant’s armor cracks to the otherworldly sound, Elindur shoots, and the armor explodes. The Darkness is gone.

Alojzy’s armor pops open and Norvos emerges from his chest and begins to reconcile with Julian. They agree to tear down the Tower while Alojzy takes care of the Builders.

The Raven arrives, telling us all the world can see the Tower now. He bears thanks to Snorri & Elindur, exchanges words with Erasmus, and flies off.

Aftermath:

Norvos, much diminished, stays with Julian to de-power the Tower.

Alojzy, now the first Maker to ever Make himself, claims the Isle of Norvos for the Builders to rebuild their society. Many of the surviving Builders of the tower flock to his new clan.

Anguisss leaves, perhaps permanently, believing he has nothing more to do here.

Elindur returns to hunt the Blood Witch and Chimera, recruiting more druids to his cause, but remains available to rejoin the Company (or ask their help).

Chiron returns to a life of diplomacy, still trying to promote peace and harmony wherever possible.

Snorri offers herself as a bridge between Dwarves and Builders, and joins up with Jennifer.

Erasmus turns to tear down the Red Store and help Alojzy.

Jennifer spends time with Julian, then returns to Thornwatch run her order (and prepare for a wedding with her betrothed, Chartran).

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