Year of the Tiger

Attempting to Fix the Present Part 4 Lady Alejandra

Attempting to Fix the Present Part 4 Lady Alejandra

Thoradin here with news

It has been awhile since I last posted and finally there is something to report. Having offered our help to the Lady Alejandra she asked us to solve the problem of the spy and some other problems she had with her staff. In order to do so we must interrogate some members of the staff and determine their race, their job, and the crime they committed. The room that we will interrogate them in is magical and no lies can be spoken in it but direct questions about the person need not be answered and the race of the person will be concealed. So this will be a test of our abilities and ingenuity.

The interviews were interesting of the ten we interrogated five were guilty of something five were not guilty and one not guilty ones tried to kill us. One of the night watchmen turned out to be a vampire and when he recognized that we knew, he attacked charming me into hitting Tharek. It was a critical hit so I did a lot of damage. I was very unhappy with myself for that. A few more blows were traded then he left phasing through the wall. We finished the interrogations and we were able to identify, the members of the staff their crimes and their race. It is now time to report to Lady Alejandra.

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Attempting to Fix the Present Part 3 Seventrees

Attempting to Fix the Present Part 3 Seventrees

Thoradin here with news

I say to the soldiers that we want to talk to Lady Alejandra and they seemed to get less belligerent and asked us where we would like to stay in the city while we wait for an audience with her. We refer to ourselves as the “Safire Defenders”. We find out the name of the city is Seventrees. Luna tries a ritual sending to Riana and finds that she is in this time and plane and asleep as it is daytime.

We go to the inn the Golden Blades it is a very nice establishment, unusual in it is eight stories high. The tallest building we have ever seen with a great oak tree growing out of the center of the roof one of the seven trees of the city. We rent two suites to accommodate the party. Derrick asks where he might find a library. The in has a few volumes and Derrick is directed to them. Luna and I go to the bank to exchange astral diamonds for local currency in order not to create any problems with our foreign money.

Our trip to the Not to Important tavern was relatively uneventful. We talked to the barmaid who was the only one there, I had ale and Luna had mead, ale and wine she is getting to be a little bit of a lush. She told us to come back at sundown and more people would be there. She also told about some information about the political situation in the city. The Lady Alejandra was the leader of a populist group and was seen as a joke by the barmaid. Since this is the person we have come back to support we have our work cut out for us. I pay for the drinks and tip the barmaid and we leave going back to the inn.

We find Derrick busy studying the books in a not to small library and assist him. In while we have the information more organized. Shortly after sundown we hear a knock and it is Riana saying she was glad we found her hotel. She had been there about a week and some of the assumptions she had made about the place were wrong. It is governed by a king instead of a council of elders. They did have and underboss Marcellus who held the same position as Riana albeit not as formal.

A page dressed in black arrives with a message from Marcellus to meet him in a tavern later tonight.

We go to Not to Important tavern again and the place is really full a lot of folks appear to be drinking and having a good time. We notice that a lot of drink is being spilled on the floor and not many of the tavern patrons are actually drinking. Marcellus appears and the crowd seems to tense he comes over to our table asks us if we are looking for work and says he may have a job for us. He wants us to deal with Lady Alejandra convince her to stop her campaign as it is bothering both the merchant and the noble classes if she is not convinced to use stronger methods. Derrick does the talking and I get nervous as the crowd grows silent they are obviously Marcellus supporters. Quite the predicament we either agree to deal with the person we have come to support or fight a bunch of peasants in a bar. Derrick asks how much it pays 10 astral diamonds with additional for expenses.
A lot of money, Derrick answers in the affirmative and I do not disagree. Better than killing a bunch of peasants I guess. I remain silent at least this gets us an audience with the Lady. Tomorrow at noon, a page will stop by in the morning informing us of this.

We go to the estate of Lady Alejandra it is a large urban estate and we are invited to wait in the drawing room, there are light refreshments as Luna is concerned that there be food. After a short while Lady Alejandra joins us. I explain the circumstances of our arrival an employ by Marcellus to deal with her. We explain that we are there to help her and used Marcellus to get and interview with her. She indicated that Marcellus had lied to us as she had decided to meet with us yesterday and had not been contacted by Marcellus. This means that she has a spy in her household. She asks how she can trust us it being that we have a vampire in our employ. Derrick explain that she is not evil just her dietary habits prevent her from being good. That seems to satisfy her and we move on to the problem of the spy and what we wanted for pay. Derrick says we would do it “pro bono” but had to explain that means free.

I wondered if it would have been better to ask for pay rather than have her thinking about our motivations. It is to late now.

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Attempting to Fix the Present Part 2 “The Cube”

Attempting to Fix the Present Part 2 “The Cube”

Thoradin here with news

We step through and find ourselves on what appears to be flat stone plane with a robed humanoid standing on it. He confronts us and asks what we are doing. I step forward and tell him we are going to the past in hopes of making the future better. He also tells us that it would be an ineffectual ban if people could circumvent it by simply going back far enough in time. We notice in the center of the plane a circle with some writing. The robe humanoid indicated it was a riddle and if we could solve the riddle of the cube we would be allowed to go to the time and place we had chosen. If we did not solve the riddle we would be trapped and die. Yes it turns out we are not on a plane floating in chaos but on a surface of a cube. Part of the group starts working on the riddle and the other explore the cube’s surface finding out that we can leave a surface only as a group. We find the following other surfaces: the fey princess, the ice cube with alchemist potions, the eldritch titan, the viper tree, and the cold plain with a house.

The Viper Tree

There are several trees on this side. We notice that a pattern has been carved into one of the trees, also that the tree has vipers in its branches. One of us knows that we can attack the tree and be able to see the pattern as long as we do not use fire attacks. We attack and are able to see the pattern and it is another riddle.

The Fey Princess

First visit: This side of the cube has a shallow lake and a fey princess sitting on a rock combing her hair, she was very obviously a woman because she was naked. Not Derrick’s naked girl but a girl none the less. She has a tattoo; she uses her hair to cover herself up including the tattoo. We ask her if we can see the tattoo she refuses. Luna attacks then Raja offers a peace offering of her magic ring. We talk for awhile and find out she is bored and wants to leave she says she will help us if we make and oath to free her from the cube. Luna and Derrick still want to kill her. Finally we all make the oath. She shows us the tattoo and then she indicates a side and says to go to that side after we visit all the others. So we go to a different side.

Second visit: “Back so quickly”, No need to attack the titan again.

Third visit: On our way through to the final side.

The Eldritch Titan

First visit: We move onto this side and see an eldritch titan swinging a hammer at us. We attack and notice a satchel around his neck after a short battle he explodes taking the satchel with him. We hope that he will come back if we go to another side and come back. We move to another side.

Second visit: We move onto this side again and see the titan swinging his hammer at us. I say there is no reason to try to kill each other. He says there is enough time to kill us all and continues his attack. Luna runs forward and distracts him and Raja runs in and steals the satchel and we all run back to the side we came from. There surprise is a riddle in the satchel.

The Ice Cube with Alchemist Potions

This side is a grass plain with an ice cube in the middle with four potion bottles on it. Upon examining the bottles we notice that there are magical papers in each of the bottles that can only be open if the bottles are broken. The bottles contain alchemist frost, fire, acid, and dragonfire tar. We also find that the only way to open the papers is to do damage to someone with the item. Luna hits Raja with one, Raja hits Luna with another, Tharek drops dragonfire tar on his own head, and somebody hits someone with the other one. The four papers give us another riddle.

The Cold Plain with a House

We go over the edge to find ourselves on a frozen plain with a small tent house. We go into the house and it is bigger on the inside than the outside. The inside is an adorned lodge with a great banquet table in the middle. The robed humanoid is standing by the table and says that we have achieved our goal and will be allowed to go to the time and place we desired and that we would also be granted a wish. Raja wants to wish for the freedom of those on the die, the fey princess and the eldritch titan. Luna wants something else. The rest of us side with Raja she wishes the persons on the die free including the fey princess and the titan, the fey princess shows up in the lodge and says she owes us a favor. She then exits through one of the doors in the kitchen. We solve the next puzzle and the final riddle. “Entrance is death unless your blades are clean and your hearts are truly pure” I kneel down to pray about the meaning of the riddles and life and get the feeling that I should make a decision and get out of there. The fey princess comes back and comments on the length of my praying then goes out the other kitchen door comes back and says she thinks this is where we want to go. We exit through the door and come to a great wall with soldiers pointing crossbows at us and asking us what we want.

The riddles:

The fire ends in the bitter cold frozen land

Walk the path to freedom quickly or be enslaved forever

The fire burns longest for those without direction

Death isn’t your exit and sleeping fails the weak

Life here is woven upon the turning die

Entrance is death unless your blades are clean and your hearts are truly pure

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Attempting to Fix the Present Part 1

Attempting to Fix the Present Part 1

Thoradin here with news

We wake up the next morning early so we can talk to Riana. She says that before the peninsula was closed there were two factions; one wanting to close the peninsula and prevent others from making changes, the other felt that they should make the whole continent better. The first group won out and exiled the other group. Some of the leaders in the second group were a mother and daughter. She indicates that the probable way to get the result we want is to lend support to the mother and daughter. She also indicated that the information was old some of it little more than myth and legend. She gives us a time and place.

We decide to go and Derrick opens up a portal and we step through. We arrive in a large room with no visible doors. Warforged statues adorn the corners of the room along with a teleportation circle and a summoning square. Luna studies the circle for awhile and determines two things; one the circle will only teleport to a certain place, second it is broken and can only be fixed at the other location. Luna performs the portal ritual and the arcane energy flows immediately to the summoning square and Warforged statues, then an eldritch titan appears and we attack. Two rounds later the titan is dead and the arcane energy switches and goes to the portal. We step through, to what we will find out next week.

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Derrick’s simple date

Derrick’s simple date

Thoradin here with news

After last times catastrophic attempt to go back in time Derrick wants to study out what happened and how to avoid it in the future. He, Nadia and Luna go into the study to confer and study the problem. I use the time to talk to Riana about what she was not telling me. I said to her that she had explained why we should take her back in time with us but not why she wanted to go. What was in it for her? She replied that she has always tried to create order around her and apparently she is pretty good at it since she was a leader in several different time lines. It would be a challenge to try and bring about a better situation for the people of Haarlem and the continent and she would like to be a part of that. I am convinced. She goes into her history and genealogy and explains that her sire the vampire who made her a vampire was very evil and she was forced to kill him. She does want order and while she is not good due to a vampire’s dietary requirements nether is she evil.

Raja figures out that the love that must get together is Derrick and the naked girl, the “Lord of Chaos” and the “Lady of Dragons”. Raja decides to consult an oracle and is able to ask 5 questions. What is love in the poem? Who do we need to hook up? What is the name of the Lady of Dragons? What are the names of the three cities in the peninsula? The oracle confirms that we are dealing with Derrick and the naked girl. We find out that the Dragon Lady is named Alyssa and is Derrick’s naked girl. We also find out what the names of the Three Cities in the peninsula are.

After a few hours Derrick, Nadia and Luna come back with the following conclusions. The chaos storms or whatever is an inherent risk of the way Derrick travels in time. The more dimensions he travels through the higher the risk of problems happening. So, if he does not try to travel in space and time things should be better. The further in time he travels the more likely he is to encounter problems. More restrictions on what he can do reduce the likelihood of problems. If he opens a small portal first unwanted things will be less likely to come through. Derrick makes the changes to his time portal spell. Also they find that the foe stone in the front of the book is causing an imbalance in the power of the book so he needs to find a stone to balance it out in the back of the book. He is looking for a gem of auditory recollection and the Lady of Dragons happens to have one.

We determine that we want to travel back in time on the outskirts of Haarlem the Derrick can portal to Rockt on his own. (He did not want chaperons). We travel back with no problems. Derrick creates a portal to Rockt and steps through Rockt has changed it is a little larger has more stone buildings and the palace is almost completed. The city is having some sort of celebration lots of partying and drinking. Derrick uses his new mage hand spell to steal a couple of drinks. He arrives at the Alyssa’s apartment and it is now three stories and made out of stone. A young girl sits juggling a dagger on the porch. Derrick is confused. He consults the book yes he has arrived at the correct time. She notices him and runs up and hugs him and calls him daddy and then slashes his face with the dagger as she runs off. More confused he goes into the house and meets a 16 year old boy Jason his son. They talk he tells him that she will forgive him eventually. Derrick says “But I haven’t been on a date yet.” Jason says “You’re not supposed to be here.” They talk for awhile talking about the situation with Alyssa that he may be able to fix the situation since Derrick is here and should not be. Jason asks to see Derrick’s book Derrick reluctantly hands it over. Jason makes some corrections in the book and hands it back. He then tells Derrick that he needs to see Captain Miles Standish and gives him a portal address. Derrick is more confused and now getting angry, all he wanted was a simple date a chance to get laid; now he has two children, one hates him and he still has not had a date or any of the other perks of being married and a father. Jason suggests that he take his friends with him to see Miles.

He creates a portal back to where we are and steps through. The portal address turns out to be somewhere in the Shearneth Empire. We step through the portal to find a somewhat rundown keep with guards on the walls. At the mention of Jason name we the guards stand down and we are escorted to see Captain Standish. It turns out that Captain Standish, Miles if you wish was exiled because of the offer he made to us. There are a group of exiles from the peninsula gathered here with limited time travel capability. Lead by Miles because he is the highest ranked exile. Miles tried to meet Derrick at the date but arrived early and Alyssa was able to learn how to travel in time. Not happy with the situation in Rockt see traveled back in time and improved Rockt’s situation. This started her on the road to becoming the Lady of Dragons and turning her evil.

Miles admits that his meeting with Alyssa was the problem. Upon hearing this Derrick goes out into the courtyard and creates effigies of Miles and proceeds to blow them up until he runs out of new and creative ways to go about it. Derrick comes back in after a period of time looking disheveled but a little less angry. Miles offers two possible solutions to the problem. One hunt down and kill the Lich that she became and live with the consequences or the more difficult path to go back in time change the situation in the peninsula so that Miles would not be exiled. The group selects the latter and Miles gives us a history of the peninsula we turn that over to our political expert Riana. We ask her to help us fix the situation after we go back far enough in time to be able to affect the situation in the peninsula.

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Risks of Time Travel

Risks of Time Travel

Thoradin here with news

Through for now with the agents of the Three Cities we leave Hank’s Tavern and head home to the Azure Fortress for a rest. We meet the next day to try and figure out what to do so that we can fix the present. We discover that Haarlem did not become as much of a trade center due to pirates in the great sand sea and that the change to the dragons’ intelligence was imposed by magic. These problems centered on a large ray swimming in the sea. A young pirate started a band of pirates who took over the ray island using it for a base which caused the trade routes to move away from Haarlem. The girl who would figure out how to make the changes to the dragons to make them less intelligent lived on the ray.

I went to visit the orphanage and my mother, and it was smaller than I remembered but nicer. It seemed like the same amount of gold went into it but there were fewer orphans so it was nicer. My visit to the Temple of Moradin was rather uneventful. Some of the faithful were confused by my new rank insignia.

We conferred over what to do and decided to go back in time to the edge of the sea then transfer via portal to the ray as Luna had a portal address to the ray. We moved out to the portal circle in the garden and Derrick opened is time portal and a bunch of things happened at once. Derrick got a very sick feeling in his stomach. Some rocks burst out of the portal. The door from the keep opened with two women in the doorway. Luna jumped up and attacked one of the stones it exploded damaging all of us at the teleportation circle. Someone discovered that these were chaos stones and were very dangerous. Later we found out that they explode after a random period of time and the blast radius is the distance they have traveled. Tharek jumped up on top of one and was able to push it down into the earth and that seemed to quiet it. Raja’s book started glowing like something was magical about it.

The two women in the doorway start coming toward us, it was Nadia and Riana. Nadia runs toward Luna and Riana comes toward me. I am not sure what to do about the rocks so I move toward Riana to find out what she wants. Nadia gets to Luna and asks where she is going and why. Apparently in this timeline they have been a couple. Awkward! “You do not remember us” Luna makes several inane comments. And apes with weapons for arms start coming through the portal. I talk to Riana and she wants to come with us. Riana explains how she can help us in the past and she really wants to go with us very bad she is telling the truth but holding back something. It is now time to fight. Tharek continues jumping around on the chaos rocks getting them to move down into the earth. In between fighting the apes coming through I try to catch a rock and fail falling to the ground. More apes and rocks come out of the portal.

Derrick starts closing the portal. Before it closes more rocks come out one explodes. Tharek is able to get most of them moving down including a spectacular example of flying where he catches Luna and me before we fall and take damage because we had jumped up on two of the chaos rocks.

Raja looks in her book and finds some new writing there a series of cryptic sentences, which we apparently need to figure out in order to fix the present. We try to analyze the words without much success.

We decide to take Riana with us as she offered ten astral diamonds each to take her. I had no objections before so that just sweetened the deal. Derrick agreed because she was wearing pants and she looks really good in pants. I do need to inquire what else she wants.

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Meeting with the Boss

Meeting with the Boss

Thoradin here with News

Lord Garrett’s doppelganger is dead destined to be a problem in the future. Derrick takes his head, yes that is rather gruesome. We go back to the Azure Fortress for baths and changes of clothes. We take a long rest and in the morning find a note from Riana the boss of the city. She wants to meet us at a neutral location “Hank’s Tavern”.

We arrive at a somewhat run down tavern the name is Hank’s Tavern but the place is run down and not at all like our Hank’s, another reason to attempt a fix. Riana awaits us at a table we sit down and she buys us a drink. Luna brings out some of her chaos berry wine; I have a small glass I want to keep my wits about me. Tharek and Riana both decline. Riana being a vampire has a glass of blood. I wonder to who or what it belongs. I get no indication that she is a rakshasa or that she has any ill intentions toward us so the conversation begins. She indicates to us that she knows that we are from another time line, but refuses to reveal the source of her information. Derrick and Luna seem to trust her and information about the other time line flows. She asks questions about her circumstance in the other time line is she a vampire and is she still the boss. When our turn comes she is a font of knowledge about the current state of this timeline. Derrick writes franticly in his book. I take a careful look around the tavern at the various groups. There are three groups: two downstairs and one upstairs. The groups downstairs appear to be a non-descript solders, one-group playing cards, and the other a drinking game. The group upstairs appears to be scholars. As I look closer I notice on one of the soldiers in the drinking game an insignia that appears to be the same one as the soldiers out of time. I immediately get nervous the others seem to have seen it also. Riana notices our discomfort and ask if anything is wrong. I indicate the tavern patrons may not be, as they seem, she excuses herself and leaves. I thank her for her information and call over the bar keep and buy the drinking game group a round of drinks.

One of the soldiers introduces himself and thanks us for the drinks. He is Captain Standish representative of “The Three Cities” and he hopes we can keep this civil. We explain that we have no idea who the three cities are and the other group never presented us with warrant. “Oh”, he said and asks our leave to retrieve the warrant he comes and officially serves the warrant. He also says that if we promise not to interfere in time anymore he can leave us alone this could potentially save our lives or the lives of his men. He explains the three cities are on the peninsula and have a desire that things be left alone the way they are even if things are worse for the rest of the world. He says we can have a short time to think about it, but hat if he notices any rituals or spell preparation he will attack.

I decide that it is time to pray I tell Moradin that I am inclined to take the offer and work with the current circumstances he says that the church is not as strong as it was, so he advises going back to fix the present. My decision is made I am not going to accept the offer. The others had decided also. Captain Standish forms his no longer rag tag troops into ranks and starts to move toward us. The scholars have changed into a group of archers. Derrick attacks sliding a group including Captain Standish into the pit in the middle of the floor. I charge and attack one of the remaining soldiers. Several blast attacks later the troops are decimated and Standish having jumped up out of the pit exits commenting that he will see us again. Here is to new enemies. Next time we are the ones that will likely be surprised.

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Dealing with Lord Garrett 2.0

Dealing with Lord Garrett 2.0

Thoradin here with News

We go down into the sewers and find ourselves in a small empty room. Raja and Tharek manage to get secret doors open and we observe Lord Garrett chanting at an arcane circle. We notice that there is an opening in the room he is in on the other side of the sewer. The stench is terrible. We try to sneak around to the opening but he hears us. “This will be your death”, he says and some rot harbingers appear in our path. Raja attacks them and Luna tries to teleport into the room and is rejected and injured by some kind of warding magic. More rot harbingers appear and some rot slingers further baring the way. I move forward and critically hit the group of rot harbingers. Tharek attacks teleporting them into the warding magic and they are destroyed, and then he flies over to the slingers. Tharek is attacked by the slingers and weakened. Derrick attacks the slingers doing damage to some of them. Raja tries rebuke undead with much less spectacular results than last week. Derrick is flanked by rot harbingers because he moved to the spawn location. Loof charges one of the slingers and really connects doing 181 hp of damage turning it into dust.

Tharek and Loof move to attack Lord Garrett who is moving to reinforce his undead. Luna and Derrick follow they are able to finish him off. While Raja and I finish of the remaining undead.

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Back to the Present?

Back to the Present?

Thoradin here with news

We run out of the marketplace. I give the foe stone to Derrick because it is the most useful to him and it takes me awhile to be able to use it in a fight. We then decide to find out what has happened to the present. So Derrick punches a hole in reality and we step through arriving in the gardens of the Azure Fortress. There is a familiar yet strange lady in the garden who turns out to be Nadia. We find out that Miharo is there and I breathe a sigh of relief, some things are back to normal. Derrick is mumbling about going back in time and blowing up everything so I follow him to the library trying to convince him that would be a very bad idea. We study current history and find that Haarlem is not as powerful as it was before, the king has only one wife and Nadia had never heard of the “Rule of Nine.” Luna does a sending to her father asking what is different he says the rakshasa problem is now bigger. So Luna and Derrick are all gung ho about figuring what to do in Haarlem in the past to improve things in the future. They find out that the inventor is in the basement along with Derrick’s aide. I however am not convinced that tampering again would be a good idea. Luna goes over to the Arcane College and finds it to be much the same except she has some men’s clothing in her room the man obviously living with her.

Loof runs to see Miharo and she is a little cold he finds out that the other Loof has been seeing a goliath lady and he did not want to see her for awhile. He said that was the other Loof and that seems to satisfy Miharo they go make up.

Peaches the cook who can now read minds fixes each of us our favorite for dinner and asks us what we are going to do about the rakshasa masquerading as Lord Garrett. Nadia is able to give us a likely location where he can be found. We take off anxious to get to the fighting. We get to the location and hear something coming out of the sewers. Luna acts first going around the corner to charge the rot harbingers. Loof gets hit by one of the harbingers and my tattoo of shared vengeance glows and I am able to throw my hammer and hit it. The party moves to the corner where they could see the rot harbingers coming out of the sewer. I charged and hit the harbinger again. He missed me on his next attack and I finished him of with my hammer. Meanwhile the others managed to destroy the others with Raja having a magnificent result from her turn undead power rendering several to dust. Now for the sewers and I hope Lord Garrett, however I wonder are we going to get arrested for his murder again.

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Fixing the Present Continued

Fixing the Present Continued

Thoradin here with news

We rescued the Empress and according to Derrick that was all we needed to do here. She gave a party honoring us and also gave us a pouch with 10 astral diamonds pretty nice reward.

Raja looks at her book and it says beware the soldiers. Now what does that mean?

Two days later after the group recovered from the party, we were down in the marketplace doing some shopping when some soldiers obviously looking for us came in to the market from north and south. Derrick does not find them in his book and gets really nervous wanting to kill them all. Luna attacks one group and Derrick attacks the other in the process of Derrick’s attack I trade places with the last guy in line so I do not have to move to be able to attack them. I wonder about whether or not we should have attacked or talked first. Well it is too late for that so I attack hitting all the persons in a burst. I attack them again hitting everyone in a burst. I then get attacked and they bloody, blind and deafen me. So I attack the healer and kill him throwing my hammer. The group was pretty impressed that a blind and deaf guy could hit someone and do them in.

Loof comes in a little later and runs to help Luna. I run to help and heal Luna as she has been bloodied. The others finish off the rest the soldiers and we discover some papers written in supernal that give descriptions of all the Azure Sentinels and instructions to bring us in alive. Now it is probably a god or gods who are after us. We really need to move slower on some things. Raja refers to her book which now just says run. I wonder what trouble our actions have caused now?

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