Heroes of Shaintar

Report 6
Tammi's Report

Maybe I really did die and this is heaven? All of these beautiful women around me…Wait, if this was heaven then I wouldn’t have to pay them…Oh well, at least I’m alive. I’ve been in a lot of dangerous situations before, but nothing like what I’ve been through with this team. We had gone to the other side of the north wall to retrieve the giant crossbows and bolts. It wasn’t easy in the dark, but suddenly Hazelf cast something that gave off a small bright light. It seemed to help until we realized it also gave away our position. The Horde had seen us and was heading our way. Before we could get back to the wall a giant metal man appeared out of thin air. Riley was closest and the creature quickly cut him down with a large axe. Hazelf was the one to kill it in just one blow. Once we reached the wall I sent Hazelf to inform Draxx of what happened, just trying to keep him in the loop. Right around the time he returned we noticed the circus leaving. As we went after them the Horde broke through the wall. Hazelf tried to lure it away from the town but it paid him no attention. It just seemed to be destroying things for the sake of destruction. It did not really care about us or go out of its way to harm us. Before I could think of a plan a gust of wind hit the giant and knocked it over. How in the fuck did that happen? But it was injured, the flames normally surrounding it had died down. Hazelf tried to hit it with his banishing sword but the flames ignited again before he could get close enough. After a few more failed attempts at wounding the thing, one of which almost killed the druid, Kendal mentioned something about its eyes. Hazelf must have heard her too because he quickly shot a bolt at one of them. This idea seemed to work so Kendal, Sage and myself watched from the ground as our flying magic users took out each eye one by one. Finally the creature crumbled to the ground, its flames dying out for good I hope.
Of course, the Fool shows up. He congratulates us on our victory and starts going on about his payment. I don’t remember hearing about any payment but he claims that Draxx promised him the legendary items my team possesses. Something doesn’t seem right about this and out of the corner of my eye I notice the druid mouthing something to me. “Darkness”. Shit. I pass the message on to Hazelf as stealthily as I can. As soon as the Fool steps away from the druid I rush him and place my sword to his throat. I’ve had it with this guy and his games. And now he’s demanding payment for doing absolutely nothing. He gave us nothing, no weaknesses on the Horde and he brought a whole team with him but they were absent during every fight. The slippery bastard managed to duck away from my sword and ended up behind me with his hands around my head ready to snap my neck. While he’s droning on about his payment again I slowly grab one of my blades and attempt to stab him. He catches my hand and begins to transform into a werewolf. Well, damn. My team tried to fight him but with Riley and Ox on his side it wasn’t going to be easy. Me, Kendal and the druid were all trying to hit the Fool. Sage shot a giant bolt from the crossbow at Ox but it did nothing. Fin was able to wound Riley a bit. I was in the middle of fighting the Fool when I felt something hit the back of my head. Pain shot through my body as everything went black.
I wake up on a bed. Reaching for my sword I find nothing. Where the hell am I? Hazelf is there and explains that we are in Kythros. Apparently after I was knocked out the team followed the Fool to Draxx. While talking to him about the payment Hazelf realized Draxx was being puppeted and got the team out of there using a magical necklace. We later met with Sargent major Mindril and discussed what to do with the legendary items eventually deciding that they will stay with the team. Afterward I dismiss the team and head to the nearest brothel. My time with this team will hopefully be at an end soon if I can convince Mindril to relocate me. Betrayal, legendary items, the Fool….this is not what I joined to Rangers for.

Journal of a Priest 23
Account by Corporal Hazelf

It’s all fallen down, and I’m spiraling down with it all. To what end I don’t know, but the end is coming and all I can do now is delay it. There’s no stopping this reckoning for my actions. The night the Horde was coming we all frantically moved to get defenses built and ready while others got citizens out of the city. Our team worked with the Circus to ready some of the ballistas and in the darkness we couldn’t find enough of the bolts to make them worthwhile. I decided to let some light to help and we managed to find a grand total of 26. However instead of going straight to the Eastern wall the Horde was coming to the Northern wall, right were we are, because of me. We quickly began to get ready the defenses we had on the north wall. An orange burst of light and amid the steam I looked to see Kal Dorahg standing there. Riley acted and shot an arrow at him to no effect. He marches up and cuts Riley down. Finian shoots out a jet of purple energy and it looks like it would hurt any lesser being but no effect can be seen. Tammie nimbly runs up and slashed at him with her schimitar then just as quick as she ran in, she ducks back away, just missing the axe. With no sweat from his brow as he turns and Sage moves up and with a astounding amount of force slams the Thunderbrand into his side, crunching his armor and possibly breaking a couple of ribs. My opportunity, this thing has struck us and so many others down, all I could think was “no not this time, no more” as I let loose a powerful bolt seeing it burn his head clean off, leaving only his helm smoldering. His body barely had time to hit the ground before I took the potion of healing the fool had given me earlier and forced Riley to drink it. He awoke, somewhat startled but we didn’t say anything to each other only a look of pity before Tammie then called me over. The rest of the Circus arrived late and the Fool remakes on who killed Kal, I said nothing but the others pointed me out and a small applause began, witch quickly died as we all felt another step the Horde took to get to us. Tammie ordered me to inform Drax of what happened and to get everyone to the Northern wall. I flew over the husk of a city, burnt out and chard buildings, barely any people left. Glancing over my shoulder I saw it getting ever closer. I found Drax and he was rushing Rangers here and there, splitting the effort, some to the wall, others to help refugees. I told him of what the Horde was doing and he knew, I then told him of Kal Dorahg’s demise, he seemed relived, and almost relaxed a little before he ordered me to get back to the wall. I flew up and back just in time to see it’s full form, it’s stone body marching ever closer, 8 white hot eyes looking for something and seeming to only to glance over us. I ask if Tammie has a plan, but her attention is drawn to the circus, they’re fleeing. Piper released her little lizard pet and plays a very haunting tune and the lizard grows much bigger in size, so t she, Karlyle and Hissam all jump atop it. Sage then asks if I can distract it somehow, sound thought as my light brought it here maybe I could, but to where. Tammie made it an order then told Finian to go after the fool. As I turned to fly away the Horde knelt down and swiped away the wall we stood on as if he was clearing dust off a book. I managed to get flying and out of the way just in time. I glanced down to see Finian, and Tammie get out of the way, I couldn’t see Kyndle or Sage admits the rubble. I prayed they were ok and continued flying up and behind it. I then used my Light ability and two of its eyes looked at me then it quickly whent back to smashing buildings. As I watched I started to Realize what it was doing. Destroying the buildings and shops, it was going to make it hard for people to live, to work, it was razing the city to slowly choke the war from behind our lines. We had to bring this thing down. Then an idea occurred and I prayed to Zivonis for it to work. I swirls the air around me, building it’s speed faster and faster, then I let it slam into the Horde and watched as it toppled over bellowing as it hit the ground. I was impressed most of all, and thanked the Asendent above. Looking upon this I heard Tammie yell out to use the sword, as she did I could see it’s body was cooling some, just enough to get close. I unshethed it and flew like an arrow but just as I got almost close enough to hit when it roared and the flames came back to life flaring with new intensity. I managed to back off again just in time before catching on fire with the surrounding buildings. As I flew off I saw Finian way up above the Horde and then I see him drop something. I flew further up and away and I get a better look and realize that Finian just activated and dropped the Token of Olara, and watched as the stone bear plunged into the Horde and disapearing. The Horde lost some of its progress getting up but seemed mostly unaffected by the bear. I happened to hear Tammie again (I’ll give her credit for an assassin she really can shout) and I flew down to the group seeing Mer’sedes as well as Sage and Kyndle (thank Archanon). Tammie told me to give the Blade of Banishment to Mer’sedes. I did and then he changed into a squirrel and started motioned me to carry him. I looked at Tammie very confused and asked what was going on. Tammie explained that Mer’sedes seeing the bear drop had a similar idea but to use the sword as a spear point. When I found it, the sword was lodged into a demon, and it didn’t kill or banish it but kept it frozen almost. That might have worked on the Horde but the way they wanted to go about it was just pure insanity. The Horde rose with fury smashing buildings with more anger and ferocity now. As insane as it was, I bent a wing down and Mer’sedes in his squirrel form climbed up it and settled on my shoulder. I glanced at everyone and then the squirrel on my shoulder and told him to hang on. I flew up and at least a good 60 feet over the Horde. I summoned the air around me and (quite literally) blew over the Horde, knocking it to the earth again. Mer’sedes saw his chance and with his squirrel hand patted me on the cheek, climbed up and jumped off my head and began to fall towards the feind. Flying past me i saw Prius moving to try and save him. Mer’sedes saw this and changed back into his Korindian self and pointed the sword straight on a collision course with the Horde. The Horde in turn shot our a jet of fire from it’s eyes but Mer’sedes (with Prius’s help ) moved just out of the way. I saw him collide then Prius slammed into him both fell to the ground and the sword flung off in some direction. When Mer’sedes collected Prius an began running I knew they were alright. The white hot eyes shifted and watched all around it and I took a shot with a bolt at one carefully aiming to make sure I hit. The light and flame exploded and when the energy dispursesd I counted only 7 of the 8 eyes left. Something worked, and Finian must have seen it and fired a bolt as well. Then from the ground another bolt, this one green, makes purchase and takes out another eye. The Horde is frantically looking around and its full attention is now on us. Finian swoops and shoots another bolt at its eyes and the Horde brings its hands up covering his leftover eyes, then look in out he took effect one step and swiped with one claw and Finian ducked out of the way, but the second arm came down and swayed him to the ground. I quickly flew down and used a potion of greater healing making sure he was awake before I flew up again and as I reached eye level with this fiendish beast I let loose another bolt robbing it of its fourth eye. It looks at me with its last three eyes and it seemed to grow hotter with rages. It steps forward and reaches into its chest and as its hand comes out its holding a very large 30 foot sword of stone, it raises it above it head and swings it down. In a surge of Adrenaline I look and take aim and fire three quick bolts at the last last three eyes. The last one hits the last eye as the tip of the sword slashes down opening a large gash in my chest but I manage to catch myself in the air, looking to see the fading fire and the crumbling stone of the Horde fall to pieces. I land and look at the crumbling debris and it’s a quick sigh of relief, I thought it was over that we won. However it only got worse from there. I regrouped with everyone else. It’s some time later that the Fool, Riley and Ox all arrive. He congratulated us on the victory and then started talking of payment, something we were not told of. Tammie is suspicious and inquires further. Something catches her eye and the Fool moves in close to Mer’sedes, Tammie then mouths, very stealthy to me "darkness ". I make the connection but knowing how the Fool works, somewhat, I wanted to advise caution however the chance never came. With the Fool that close to Mer’sedes she darted over with her schimitar out and pointed and ready to cut the Red Fools head off. He asks to talk this over but Tammie just lashes out in a vain attempt to cut his head from his body. I could only watch as in rapid movements Tammie and the Fool moved around and he ended up behind her with both hands grasping her face, threatening to snap her neck, then asking again to talk over the payment issue. Before I could speak I see Tammie attempt to use one of her assassin blades into the Fool behind her, but he catches her hand, and began to change into his werewolf form. Mer’sedes activates the Mask of Thorns and punches the Fool. Kyndle rushes behind the Fool and slashes at him but the Fool smacks her blade out of the way. Finian shoots a bolt at Riley and it looks like it hits hard, but Rileys still standing. Sage, still manning the ballista shoots the loaded bolt at Ox. He pulls it out as if it were a splinter and snaps it in two. Tammie breaks away and furiously strikes out but the blades can’t seem to cut through the werewolfs hyde. Then an arrow strikes Tammie in the back of the head and she slumps over. Riley speaks out and the Fool follows suit, I tell everyone to hold and I go over and check on Ta’qiyya , she’s alive, and I heal her to keep her stable but still knocked out, not wanting another confrontation without more information. I give her weapons to Finian and ask Kyndle to carry her back to where the Headquarters was being used. It was a very silent walk and upon arriving we found Five points abandoned. I told Finian to scout ahead to the west. We continued on foot till arriving and seeing three camp fires by the gate, Drax at one with someone resembling an adept like the one who screened my thoughts when I first arrived at Kythros, and Finian was there just eating some soup. At another fire was Lana, when she saw us she initially got up but I shook my head, and she sat back down. Something didn’t seem right. I had Tammie layed down a ways away, comfortable. Drax called me over and we began to talk. I asked about the payment and if he knew the Fool was a Werewolf. That’s when I noticed his amber eyes turn blue and his speech slowed as if he had to really think about what words to use. I came to the suspiction that the adept a few feet away was using Drax, this was a bad situation to be in, I had to get everyone out of here and quickly. The necklace! Tammie had it and that was my opportunity. I went over to her and asked everyone on the team over to "help " me. I looked up and saw Lana, I couldn’t leave her behind. I called her over as a healer, and when she was close enough I made sure we were all in contact and I quickly and unnoticed used the necklace and teleported away and arrived at Kythros. The familiar purple energy dissipated and we all found ourselves on the bridge in Kythros, Rangers rushing around us hands on their weapons, I don’t blame them, I’d be concerned if a bunch of people teleported onto my door step. I immediately show my ranger pin to the ones who looked like they were about to draw swords first. Mer’sedes immediately points and asks for an explanation, and I see the rest of the team is wondering as well. I explain in short and I ask to speak with Mindril, Mer’sedes turns to a donkey and we prop Tammie up and Sage seems very fascinated by the mule. Lana is also wanting more of a better explanation, I promise her a better one but later. We are escorted and see Mindril, and I explain everything, He was skeptical but that doubt went out when the adept screened my thoughts and confirmed what I said as truth. He says we’ll talk further in the morning the stress of the evening and we all settle down in the Ranger barracks. Tammie comes too some time later and I calm her down and explain what’s going on to her. She’s complimentary on what I did, I still feel guilty leaving drax, but I didn’t know if he was fully under control or what. Mer’sedes and Sage went out drinking coming back somewhat clumsy but they got beded down and rested. I got what rest I could and in the morning Mindril called us to his office. I explained in detail what happens the past few weeks, citing my reports, Tammie pitching in for some of the more recent events. We discuss what to do with the items, weather to lock them in a vault, keep them, or even destroy them. I wasn’t sure myself, the items couldn’t all be used by the forces the fool wanted to sell them to, but they were indeed powerful. Then after the Thunderbrand was done being examined we were told that the items couldn’t be destroyed, that only left the last two options. We needed time to relax and resupply so first opportunity Finian went to a bard college. I found Lana packing what things and supplies she had. I asked and she told me she had to leave, she had to get Drax back. I did convince her to stay two more days, fearful she’d attack the Circus head on. They’re a powerful group not to be underestimated and a part of me is fears for Riley. With the Fool being a Werewolf, that close to Darkness, how long till that corruption spreads, if not already. How many of the others are that way? There are things I need to try and figure ou and not enough time for it all. Two days is all I have, I have to keep them all safe, while being hunted as an animal. Archanon be with us.

Tammi's Letter To Riley

I’m sure you had your reasons for doing what you did. I can’t imagine what they would be but I’m sure they’re there. All I know is that you betrayed your team, you betrayed me, the Rangers, and Hazelf. We all trusted you. We trusted you to have our backs and to not do things that would get us killed. I understand the Rangers are not for everyone, but how can you trust the circus? How can you trust the Fool? Whatever stupid thing you did I’m sure was on his orders. Just take a step back and think about what you’re doing. You’re choosing to trust a man that has killed innocent people. A man that will betray anyone if he thinks it will keep him alive. The Red Fool could turn on you at any second. Do you really think someone like that could actually be a good leader? A friend? Because of your selfishness, thats really what this is lets be honest, my career and Hazelf’s life were on the line. I lied for you. I lied in order to give you an out so you could leave all of this. The Rangers, the circus, all of it. But what do you do? You run to this group of murderers and thieves, and you almost get Hazelf killed. Hazelf who trusted you the most. I saw the way you two looked at each other. I’m not an idiot. I hope you know that when we go up against the Horde we will not walk onto that battlefield as partners. You are now our enemy. My enemy. And I’m not in the habit of offering my enemies mercy. So be prepared. Be prepared to have to face the decision you’ve made because you’ll have to face it sooner than you think.
- Tammi

Amended last will and Testament

Hazelfs Will and Testament
To whom it my concern
To the City of Archanaya and the Church I wish that any pay I would have received before the event of my death, From the Grayson Grey Rangers, be donated to said church. Along with the Whitesilver sword I possess be donated as well.
To my good friend, the Eldakar Ranger Finian Tortorus the enchanted bracers in my possession.
The weapon I carry known as the Blade of Banishment, if not claimed by any of the fellow Rangers I work with, to be returned to Nazatir. Ranger Sage Cordova would know the way best.
Any further magic items or items of importance will be given to the Grayson Grey Rangers to distribute as they see best.
Should my body be recovered I wish it to be transported to the Aevakar arie known as Bastion. Corporal Renn, Corporal Tammie (Ta’qiyya), Ranger Finian Tortorus, Ranger Sage Cordova, Ranger John Wyvern, and Ranger Lycore Wyndi are all asked to attend said funeral, and as requested given leave to attend if possible. If transport to the Arie of Bastion is deemed impossible the closest arie known will be welcomed. Should it still be deemed impossible for my body to be transported to my people I ask that it be taken to Archanaya and given the funeral rights as set by humans.
Amendment: The healing urn I have is to be given to the Druid healer Lana Meri’Doth, found in Homestead. As well as a letter delivered to her.

Journal of a Priest 22
Account by Ranger First class Hazelf

Its coming, the horde is headed this way now, I see it on the Horizon anytime I fly. Yet strangely after all that has happened today I look up and she her and I’m calm, if these are to be my last hours I’m glad I’ve spent it with Lana, I’m glad to be here with the Rangers, I’m glad to be here with my team. We had our time at the wall. As we made our way back I pulled Tammie to the side and told her of my conversation with Riley and she took it to consideration. As I was about to fall back some she dose grab me and tell me I’m more of a leader than I think. I pause on the thought and nod in appreciation. She moves up next to Riley but I’m still thinking. All the times I have lead and how bad things got. I just don’t see it but perhaps, maybe Ren had a better impact than I thought, and Tammie is showing faith in me, still. We get some ways away and I hear fighting then running, looking out I see a person, she is wearing armor of that of the Paladins of Archanaya! Then the Minotaur rounds the corner. Karlyle shoots first but the Minotaur raises his club and defects the arrow away. Finian shoots a bolt and it seems to hurt it. Tammie manages to run round it and I see her slash at it but the Minotaur looks uninterested. And arrow flys over and hits it but he shakes it off. Then he slams his club down on the paladin and gal looks hurt but she’s still standing. I fly over and slash at its face, it deflects the most of the blow but I do cut off a chunk of its horn and as I land I swiftly jab the sword into its leg and drag the blade up trying to slice again but it bounds off its hide. Then as I land again an arrow flys clean through the Minotaurs head splattering its blood and brains behind it and onto to Tammie who quickly ducks out of the way as the beast falls backwards. I look to the Paladin and heal her with magic then bandage up the remaining few wounds. Tammie walks up and still being covered in bits of blood, introduced herself and was acting quite flirty. It then occurred to me and I just happened to say it out loud as well.
“Oh that’s right Tammies a Lesbian "
I have the sudden realization that I’ve just said this out loud and Tammie gives me this look that sends shivers down my spine, I have to walk away a moment. I make rounds and check on everyone else and I see Riley and Tammie talking and then I hear Tammie tell Riley to stay by me. It’s a moment of awkward panic but maybe this is an opportunity, for what I don’t know. As he walks up however I assume he tried to elbow me in the ribs but it more tickled than hurt. The paladin introduced herself as Kyndle from what I gathered she grew up in Archanaya, never knew her parents, didn’t even know exactly when she was born. She has the features of both human and Orc, tanish green skin, a protruding jaw and muscular. She had the look of someone who had just finished training but her sword caught my attention for a moment but Tammie brought us all around and we started heading back again. Upon arriving at the square Riley went and talked with Tammie again, I didn’t get much of the conversation but I did get the idea there was some tension. Riley then walked off and she disappeared into the crowd, I was about to continue on to HQ but Tammie told me to fly and find Riley. I took off into the air and quickly found him by his white fur. I followed hi and saw he was headed to the gazebo used by the Circus crew and I relayed the message to Tammie via my wind whisper. I then flew back to the headquarters. I reported to Drax as best I could. I tell him of the ballistas and killing both the Gargoyle and Sharnia (again). I ask about continuing to help heal people and where Faylin and Lana are. With the past few days she been in my mind, I hope she’s alive and ok through all this. Drax confirms this, she’s currently working in the North west portion of town. However Faylin still needs some help with work. Before I leave Drax dose promote me, Ranger First class. He states it’s been long overdue and that with all that’s been going on if I ever needed to talk I could. He’s right a lot has happened and at some point I do want to talk with someone, just not now. I wanna finish this, I need to make sure we put our dead to rest, I pray we still have time. There’s a lot less wounded, most of the work I end up doing is re-checking bandages and making sure the dead are burnt to ash. Tammie came up and told me what was up. Apparently she had sworn Riley in wrong so he wouldn’t have been a real Ranger. She seemed distraught and a bit frantic. When she’s done she storms off I assume to find Finian and Sage. I don’t know why but it seemed like a relief somehow, maybe a means to resolve and restart the relationship. I keep working doing what I can but the work is so slow my mind keeps going back to hoping that Riley is dealing with this development well. I finally decided to tell Faylin I was headed out and I decided to go find Riley. He wasn’t hard to find, stood near a lantern post propped up against a wall in an ally way. He was just looking up at the clear night. I didn’t know exactly what to say so I started pointing out the stars and their constellations, how the moons had their cycles. I just kept sharing knowledge of ambient things till he spoke up. He asked why and I told him that a part of me wished that I had his opportunity, to leave to start anew. I tried to talk about how hard it is to be a healer, how sometimes you have to let go and how I find that hard. He took it the wrong way and shot me with a blunt arrow in the face. My vision blurred for a moment and I regained myself and explained what I meant better, how I tried to care, how I should have cared more and was sorry. I was about to finish and invite him to go grab a drink and that’s when it happened. It stung and it got hard to breath and then the pain registered in full force and I glanced down to see a bloody arrow tip sticking out of my throat. I looked up at Riley and I felt another sting in the back of my leg and I could feel the faint poison. As my sight faded I saw shock in Riley’s eyes, a faint gasp and then everything went black. I’m just floating in the black, no light, no sound. This can’t be how it ends, I refuse to let it end now or ever. I’m done running away, I’m going to stand. I open my eyes and my face is covered by some burlap sack and I wait a moment before I try to move. It feels weird to breath but I pull the burlap away. I’m not bound in chains, and none of my items are missing. I try to get up but my leg burns, and I take a moment to observe my surroundings. I was in some where house, through the windows there’s daylight so I knew it’s been awhile. I went ahead and healed myself and I could feel the odd sensation of my throat healing and he wound closing. I bandaged my leg as best I could but it was still lame. I make my way over to the door and I quickly find its bound by chains. I look up to the windows but they’re too small for me to fit through. I look over the door and make sure there’s no traps and with none found I decided to break out. I took my bastard sword a managed to slip it through the he door and used it as a crow bar and break the chains. The door swung open and the harsh light of day blinded me for a moment. From the street I don’t know exactly where I was but I ready my leg and I fly up to just see over the buildings. I was somewhere over the abandoned where house district of town and I managed to spot Five points square and I started flying there. I don’t know what to think, it all happened so fast and I’m still alive now, I take my blessing as is. As I’m flying I see Finian flying as well, a bank past him and tell him to get back to Headquarters. I land outside and I see Kyndle, she looks very worried but Tammie gets to me first. This is the most Frantic I’ve ever seen her, and she looks tired as well. Finian and Sage comes up next and help me into the headquarters and into a bed, Faylin comes in and works on healing my leg. When he’s done I look it over and fold my toes and no pain, then Tammie grabs me by the collar of my robes and slams me against the wall. She’s furious and not quite screaming but making sure I can’t shy away from what she says. She’s mostly asking why I disappeared and what happened and bombarding me with questions. Drax comes in and i tell what happened to everyone there, even Kyndle. It’s more a moment of silence when I finish and Drax glaring at Tammie, who seems to have calmed down but is more focused on avoiding Drax’s gaze. Tammie brings up that while she was watching the Circus she never saw Karlyle at all. I ask Drax how much longer we are going to be trusting the Fool and his crew. As he’s about to answer I hear something, I was focusing on it so much that I didn’t quite catch what Drax said. The sound was almost like thunder, but it had a pattern, one after the other, like foot steps. I inquired if anyone else heard it. Drax seems to lose some color in his skin as he darts out the door, we all follow and I take to the skies, and Finian is right behind me. On the horizon I see it, him, the Horde, and it’s coming this way. I tell everyone what we saw, right now I just want to rest. I normally would be scared but I find myself actually thinking of how we could beat it, and what it is. Tammie tells us to gather up and offers Kyndle to come with us, she agrees and Tammie leads us to the gazebo. I don’t want to be here, something just makes me feel vulnerable here, especially after I see Riley there among them. However we do get to know them some more. Piper seemed to have a small lizard pet that almost resembled the "jungle tyrants " we fought on Nazitir, it’s named Zogarth. The Youlin-Ardie is named Hesah, or Jibril. Agustus blurted out one before the other and it was confusing. As Tammie we talking with he inquired as to her name, and she did reveal that her real name is Ta’qiyya. What reason The fool told us what he knew of the Horde, being made up of multiple entities and being very slow. With that I did look over at Riley and we made eye contact. He gave this toothy grin that was very unsettling, but there was something else. The look in his eyes, this wasn’t the same person we met on Skyisland, this wasn’t the same person who kissed me. The Riley I thought I knew is effectively gone. The person with the Circus is for all purposes with them and whatever happens next should be considered with them. I finally break away and ask to go help the wounded, but this time I go and see Lana at the north western side of town. It’s mostly work helping Refugees flee or buckle down. I can’t help but look up every now and then from writing and see her smile. Those forest green eyes and the kindness behind them. If this is to be the end then this is the peace I received. My prayer now is forgiveness for us, I pray we all make it, but I pray that at the end justice is served.

New Me
Riley's Notebook

We move back to Five points after the gargoyle. I ended up asking Cartwheel about the joke, and it’s pretty good for being so political. As we walk, Tammie says she’s keeping an eye on me and I’m to stay by her side. Fuck me.. I’m starting to dislike them more now. I know Hazelnut had something to do with it, none of what I’m doing is really any of his business… kinda.
As we walk we see a 5’ 9" half orc with dark hair and amber eyes with greenish skin. She swings a weapon that has a bit of a white glow. She was running from a minotaur. Finnegan blasts it with his lute. I shoot it in the eye and he starts reeling back. I got this and after a bit more fighting, I shoot through the beast’s nose and my arrow explodes through it’s head. Heh… Tammie is sprayed with blood before she goes to hitting on the paladin. I still can’t believe they’re bothered with me when we have bigger problems. My only goal is to be happy, and I’m sure I can trust a circus of misfits more then some of them. They’re nice and all, but I find myself becoming more bitter towards them. Then I just hear Hazelf, “Oh yeah! Tammie’s a lesbian.” It looks like the paladin couldn’t care less and she’s more concerned that her team is dead. Her name is Kinder egg or something. I convince Tammie that I’m the least of their problems, so the bitch tells me to stay by Hazelf. This is not what I meant. I move next to him and try to elbow him hard…. and end up probably tickling him. As we head back, we find that Kinder doesn’t even know about herself… so helpful.
When we get back, it’s hard outside. I convince Tammie to let me freakin’ piss by myself. I go towards the bathroom and turn. I need to find him and go to the circus. I look up to see if the freakin’ bird is following me. I just feel super annoyed by him now. All I see if someone’s hand in my face as they wave to someone else. I’m sure it’s fine. I go to the place the circus set up camp and I see the fool, shin, and Cartwheel. The fool smiles and says my team is watching. I’m told to wait for them and they’ll find me. Quite the interesting bunch. I wonder if they really can get past the rangers so easily.
Tammi comes up to me and says to come with her. She says I can tell her if something is wrong. I couldn’t hold it back, all I want is to be with the booming family that is the circus. I look down and tell her that I never asked for this and that I shouldn’t have accepted to be a ranger for a bow and a man. A man who now I find it hard to look at. If he found out I took feathers for a reason, he’d never forgive me. It hurts that I’m going to hurt him, but that feeling is slowly fading since he won’t let me do anything by myself now apparently. Tammie leads me to Drox and says she royally skrewed up my swearing in and that I’m not officially a ranger apparently. I could see her lying through her teeth but the big lizard just stood and said “These things happen” then offered to swear me in. She led me off saying she’d take care of everything. Why would she do that? THen she slammed me against the wall and told me that if I can’t handle it, I need to leave or swear in. She stomps away and I just stay against the wall, shaking. Her job was on the line there… and I’m not sure whether to be grateful or terrified that the chill commander just blew a gasket. She could have gotten me in serious trouble if they had one of those mind readin’ folks… but she set me free. I go over to a building, away from everyone else and just sit and look at the sky. Two of the three moons are full, with the third being a small cresent. I hear the circus as the night goes on. An ogre, I’m guessing Ox, stomping from the north.
I’m still wanting to be alone, but I can’t find it in myself to hide. Hazelf comes up near me and says he envies me that I was able to leave and he isn’t. I don’t make eye contact, just look at the sky. That is, until he says something about the first thing they learn about healing is “letting go”. I completely snap. How dare he tell me to let go after what he knows about me!! I shoot a blunt arrow at his face and don’t hold back. His nose is bleeding and he starts yelling that he didn’t mean me, but then he’s cut off. All I hear is gurgling before I see the arrow in his throat… black veins pulsing from where the tip of the arrow went through. His eyes go blank and he falls forward. Something inside me breaks and I feel different. I feel cold. I see Carlyle jump down and say “Well well well, looks like you took things to another level” to which I responded that I didn’t want him fucking dead yet. He nudges Hazelf’s face with his boot and says that that might be a problem. I asked why he did it and Cartwheel says how he saw me shoot and thought that I wanted Hazelf taken care of. I just sigh and comb my fingers through my hair. He says to grab the arms as he grabs the legs and I do and we start to move the body. We drag him into a alley and he and I notice footsteps and we duck out of sight. It was tamale walking, I wonder if she’s looking for him. We end up taking him to a food store and wrap him in burlap sacks and just leave him for dead. I can’t help but smirk… I shouldn’t have to worry about him any more. Bothersome bird. The others were never as good to me… and the circus has already killed for me. This is going to be nice. He tells me that it’d be wise if I kept to the shadows. I grab three more of those precious feathers before moving on.
Later in the night, Carthweel came to get me and brought me back to a tavern, where the fool was. He said he heard things got a little hairy and made sure I was fine. I gave him the feathers, as promised, and he seems quite pleased saying they’d fetch an absurd price. I asked if they had to be fresh, as he requested. He smiles and says that it was just a test, which I don’t mind. I give him the bag of feathers I’d been collecting and he claps his hands on my shoulders and tells me that I’m part of the family now. He hugs me tight and tells Carlyle to inform the others of their new brother. I smile and feel so at home. That hug just made me feel so safe, like the hugs my father used to give me. Afterwards, I head back to the others.
The fool comes in with my former team and they say we’re going to work together. Oddly enough, Hazelf is still alive. He puts his hand in the middle of a circle and I put my hand on Dante’s. Once everyone, including Shin has a hand in, we shout “Go team!” Much more fun this way. Tamale asks about the horde and the fool says that it’s a combination of demons, but he’s only seen it in its full form once when it broke free. It’s going to be hard to beat… if we can. No weakness that he knows of. We can’t even get too close because of the fire surrounding the 50ft tall beast. It’s very slow moving stone, but that just means we’ll have to use the ballistas to kill it. The boss says that he might know someone who can help. He goes off with Dante and cartwheel flanking him. I notice a creature stick it’s head out of Piper’s bag. It’s an odd reptile with a collar of blue gems that match her flute. The little cutie looks at us and nuzzles his master. Fin asks the name of the lizard and it seems to be “Zogarth”. I wonder if he’s still trying to go for the married woman. I’m pretty sure Augustus would kick his newly grown ass.
I hear Tamale start to talk to the Aradi, but Augustus answers instead apologizing for his rude friend who doesn’t really talk. I really do like him. Anyways, he answers that his name is “Gibril” then panics for a second then says he meant “Hesah”. Tamale mentions her real name as being Tequila. Then hazelf asks shin if he’s an adept and how he sees. Shin shakes his head and then Augustus steps in again and says Shin had a hard past. Then, trying to be friendly, Tequila asks if the circus wanted to know anything about them. She hasn’t looked at me the entire time. Ox pipes up and asks why Tequilla is so small, why Hazelf has wings and just sniffs kinder. Then the big lug looks to augustus and asks “why no wings”. Hazelf says something about how ox was blessed with strength and he wings. The big guy just huffs. I finally lock eyes with Hazelf, and give him a toothy smirk. I guess we’re not done yet, little bird.
Later the boss and the other two return. There’s a loud clap and a smoking soot covered dwarf with a beard and goggles appears. The boss calls him Fjord Whitestone. He mentions Arc Fire helping with weapons against the Horde. He asks where he can work and he’s told to ask the lizard lieutenant. We all walk to the north gate where the ballistas were, and now we can hear each step of the horde… so close. It looks like there are so many repairing the wall. This is what ox must have been doing. All of the circus keeps eyes on the fool as we walk. The gat is closed, but they slowly crank it up. The boss asks Ox to help and he pushes the door up without a problem. We investigate and find 4 working ballistas and 6 bolts. That’s not enough. The bird flies up and starts to glow. Fin shouts that the Horde is changing direction and headed our way… probably because of the bright light. We look hard for 2 hours and find 20 more, so 26 in total. The horde is much closer now..
A giant 10ft tall figure in full metal appears, steaming. He runs at me and I’m hit…. going down again? I just started this life…. I wake up with Hazelf standing over me. I thank him and then we head back, taking us a bit.The circus runs up, panting, and says that they’re there. I almost died… took them long enough. The gate is closed, but seems like the big guy who hit me is dead. I guess I missed something important. 30-50 troops keep coming in over the next few hours. It’s so close now. I hope I can enjoy my new family for a bit longer…

Report 5
Tammi's Report

This could possibly be my last report. The past few days have been an absolute shit show. I was enjoying the high of having survived fighting an actual fucking gargoyle when Hazelf pulled me aside. He expressed some concerns about Riley. Apparently, he told Hazelf he had done something stupid. Feeling my high coming to an end I went to have a little chat with Riley. I told him from now on he stays by me and doesn’t go anywhere without my permission. I hate being this type of leader but I couldn’t risk Riley putting himself or the team in danger.
As we walked back to five points we came across another Ranger running from a minator. Carlyle asked what he should do. “Shoot it”. I mean you can kill a gargoyle but are confused about what to do when you see a minator? Of course the minator deflects the arrow. “I said shoot it!”. I really didn’t think it was that hard of an order to follow. The beast is fucking huge, shouldn’t be that hard to hit it. Riley ends up being the one to kill it with an arrow through its head.
At this point we’re able to meet our new friend. She’s a half orc with slightly green colored skin and dark brown hair. I approach her, place a hand on her shoulder, and start to ask her for her name when Hazelf suddenly shouts “oh yeah Tammi’s a lesbian!”. What the fuck!? After glaring at him for a few seconds I return my attention to the half orc. She tells us her name is Kendal and that the rest of her team is dead. I have her walk with us the rest of the way to five points. Poor thing, seemed pretty shaken up.
I tell Riley to follow me to Draxx’s office to report but he says he has to pee. I know he is lying, but I allow him to go. I quickly send Hazelf to fly up and follow him so that I can see where he is going. Following Hazelf I find Riley talking to the Fool, but I’m not close enough to hear what they are saying. When Riley walks into the crowd I confront him, asking him what they were talking about. He says something about trying to find Donte. Well, this approach was getting me nowhere so I decide to change tactics. I tell Riley that he can always come to me and talk if he needs to. He responds by telling me he didn’t want this and that he made a mistake. He looked so sad and regretful. Suddenly an idea popped into my head, a very risky idea.
I took Riley to Draxx’s office and confessed that I messed up Riley’s swearing in oath which would technically mean he was not really a Ranger. At first Draxx was angry, I don’t blame him there, but he agreed that yes by not swearing in correctly Riley was not officially a Ranger. Thanking him for clearing that up I rushed Riley out of there as casually as I could. Once we were outside the anger I had been trying to keep bottled up exploded. I slammed Riley against the wall asking him if he realized what I had just done for him. I’ve only been a Ranger for three years and to already be a corporal is extremely impressive and not easy to do. I looked Riley dead in the eye and told him this was his chance to leave, if he can’t handle his shit he needs to get the fuck out. I let go and Riley practically ran away.
I went in search of my other team members, informing them that Riley is no longer a Ranger. I tell Sage and Fin that they may be put in a situation where they have to kill Riley. I don’t give them more details than that. Sage is quiet and doesn’t really give me an answer, but Fin says he will do it if need be. When I find Hazelf I tell him the whole story. We both believe Riley may join the circus which could potentially make him an enemy. I ask him if he could kill Riley, he says he isn’t sure if he could. I tell him that if the worst happens it will be a direct order. The words leave a sour taste in my mouth, this is not the type of leader I ever wanted to be. But if I have to be this person so be it.
I spend the rest of the day keeping an eye on the circus, noticing that neither Riley or Carlyle are with them. Getting suspicious I decide to go look for them. Hours went by and all I found was a small trail of fresh blood. When I return to the courtyard I only find Sage and Fin. We find a small room and I ask if either of them have seen Hazelf. They hadn’t. Shit. I order them to get some rest, but was unable to do the same. The next morning Fin asks what he can do to help so I send him out to look for Hazelf. Just as we all step outside Hazelf comes flying past us towards the main building.
When he catch up with him I ask where the fuck he has been, but he just walks inside. His leg was bleeding pretty badly and when Faylin notices he comes over and heals him. Hazelf tells us that he went looking for Riley and wound up with an arrow in his throat and leg. I’ve only ever seen one archer be able to shoot two arrows at a time. I inform Draxx that while watching the circus yesterday I noticed that Carlyle was not with them. Draxx asks about Riley’s swearing in and I informed him that he chose not to join the Rangers. Draxx’s face suddenly goes red, if thats possible, and asks why he wasn’t told about this. Oops. I try explaining that I was too busy looking for Hazelf. Oops again. I forgot to tell him that Hazelf was missing. I swear I’m good at my job its just this team. I apologize to Draxx and tell him I’ll be better about keeping him in the loop.
Hazelf interrupts us by asking if we hear something. Draxx orders him to go outside and fly up. When he returns he tells us the Horde is coming. Draxx tells us to get some rest while he figures out how much time we have. When we step outside I push Hazelf against a wall. I’ve got to stop doing this before it becomes a habit. Before I can start yelling at him though the Fool comes up to us. He asks us if we have a plan, I ask if he does. He smiles and asks if we want to work together. I smile back and say sure.
He takes us to the circus. Riley is with them but I try my best not to look at him. The Fool tells them we will be working together and tells us to put our hands in the middle. We all do, some with more hesitation than others. The Fool raises his in the air and says “go team!”. Right as I say it back I feel a large presence behind me. I turn and its Draxx not looking very happy. He pulls me aside, “What did we just talk about?”. I inform him that I feel my team needs to keep a close eye on the circus and that I simply took the initiative since he was dealing with more pressing matters. I don’t know if it was my astounding logic or just the fact that Draxx has so many other things going on but he allowed me to continue with this plan.
When I returned to the group I asked the Fool what he knew about the Horde. It has no weaknesses but it is very, very slow. However, you can’t get too close to it because the heat of the flames surrounding it are so intense. The giant crossbows we saw by the north gate are mentioned and the Fool says he has a friend he can contact about more weapons. He walks off with Donte and Carlyle while the others stay with us. I try to start up a conversation with the other Youlin Aradi of the group but he doesn’t talk much. Augustus tells me his name is Jibril – “I mean Hesah” – which I recognize as male names. Well there go my chances of getting some before we all die facing the Horde. After a few more minutes of chit chat I order my team to get some rest. I make a stop by Draxx’s office and let him know that my team will be going to retrieve the weapons we found by the north gate, doing my best to keep him in the loop.
Right now I’m with my team in a small room with some beds. I can hear pens against paper as they are all writing reports, journal entries or maybe even goodbye letters. The Horde is coming and our chances of surviving the fight against it are slim. But I suppose there are worse ways to leave this world.

Gargoyles just wana have fun?
Love and whatever the fuck Riley is doing.

So now that I have a whole ass again…

Things are slightly more quiet now that the minotuar is gone, but you can still hear battle raging from all around. The Red Fool shows back up with some guys I’ve never seen before, but Hazzy seems to recognize of them. The brinchie is introduced as Dante Santiago, and his compadre Shen (still don’t know what the deal is with his eyes). Hazelf mentioned something to them about a demon lady being there and then I heard him say Sharnia. The fuck she doing back? Last I checked, John and I took care of her on the boat to Southern Shale. Maybe she came back for me. I don’t know, but I hope she doesn’t hold grudges. I look over to see what looks like Riley eating a wad of paper. Is that some kind of special diet for brinchies? Anyway we make our way through town to Five Points passing pile after pile of bodies burning. We stop when these two little orphans walk up to Hazelf holding out their hands, one boy and one girl. These poor kids probably didn’t have anything. Hazzy gives them some of his rations and coins, and I make a flower out of journal paper for the girl. What can I say, I have a soft spot for children. It’s not fair that they have to grow up knowing war and loss.

Tammi asks us if we need to do anything before we move on with our next stage of the plan. I immediately go to find a new pair of trousers. It’s not hard to get attention when your ass is hanging out of our pants and you’re as handsome as I. I find a local tailor who fashioned me a new set of pants that flattered my figure if I do say so myself. As I make my return to the rest of the group, I see a large group of individuals enter the courtyard. Among them, the most noticeable was this enormous 17 ft. tall ogre with an eye patch and a massive cross bow that puts normal cross bows to shame. One of his tusks was also chipped which made him look even more badass. Next to him was a much smaller 7ish ft. tall human (Olaran by the looks of it) with short blond hair and close to him a smaller female with curly brown hair who was carrying a flute. Holy crap it’s been a while since I’ve seen another bard. She seemed to be the shy type though staying behind her companions as to not be noticed. There was also a dessert dweller wrapped in his linens that had a neat scorpion tattoo over one of his eyes. Leading the group was an Eldakar with similar hair to me, but still different, sporting a long bow. Dante and Shen go up to them and talk to them and the Fool shows up, one of the guys referring to him as “boss.” Are these people the Circus??? I’ve heard rumors, but they didn’t make sense until now. Either way I need to find out about that bard!!!

Tammi returns and says that we need to rest up for tomorrow. We will meet with her and Lt. Draxx at noon tomorrow at the fountain. That means I have today to talk to the bard. I hope she’s not committed to anyone right now. I haven’t had the luck with finding companionship like Riley has with the Balam and Hazzy. It would be great just to have one night where I don’t have to think about whether or not I’m going to make it though the next day or not. Tammi goes to the barracks to sleep, Sage goes to be with the orphans (apparently she also has a soft spot for kids), Hazlef goes to do more healing, and Riley and I go to meet with the Circus to talk to the bard (and I believe Riley has a thing for Dante. Things might be getting frisky there). We find the group gathered around drinking ale and the human telling a joke, of which I only caught the punchline, “…and that’s when the bear fucked him!” Immediately everyone started laughing hysterically, except for the bard. I go up to her and tell her that I noticed her flute and asked if she could show me something. She was hesitant at first, but after showing her my Elvish flute, she began to play a melody. I instantly recognized it as the Flight of the Raven, a personal favorite of a friend of mine back when I traveled with other musicians. I joined in on my flute providing a harmony layer that made the song that much prettier. After we finished the crowd erupted. I even heard the thunderous clap of the ogre in appreciation. I asked the girl for her name and she quietly squeaked “Piper.” It was perfect! I saw how close the girl was to the human. Were they friends? Siblings? Lovers??? I had to know, but I was too afraid. I didn’t want to know the answer if it wasn’t going to be what I wanted it to be. I left. It was getting late and I didn’t want to get on Tammi’s bad side (trying to do better than I did with Tiny).

I make it back to the barracks and I see Tammi and Hazlef who is asleep. Tammi asks me about Sage and Riley. I tell her Sage is with the orphans and Riley is still with the circus. She sighs and tells me to take her to Riley. I return with Tammi to see the crowd gathered in a large circle with Riley and Dante in the middle of it, Dante with his sword drawn and Riley with his bow. So much for him finding love. I look over and see Piper with that other guy and I feel my body move towards them. I was walking over there, but I didn’t want to. I knew as soon as I asked, the truth would come out that they’re together. I couldn’t bare to hear it. They’re so different. He’s loud and obnoxious, but she’s dainty, sweet, and pretty. I went over anyway and asked her about who taught her flute. She replied her mother, to which I told her it was my mother who showed me how to play the lute and who gave me L’ysha. I could see that the man was too engaged in the fight for him to listen so I ask her, and of course they are in fact married. My heart sank. I told her we should play again together and bid her good bye. I couldn’t stay there next to them. The guy would eventually catch on, and I’m not here to make any more enemies than we already have. I returned to Tammi who was enjoying some ale and spectating this sparring match between the felines. I could see that Riley was well under the influence trying to shoot dull arrows at the un-inebriated cat. Riley was getting his ass handed to him (at least not a chunk taken off). At some point, I see Riley grab Dante and kiss him. Great. There goes another one in the column for Riley. How the fuck does he do it??? I can’t get one girl, but since I’ve met him, Riley has smooched three guys (and got even more lucky with some of them). I decide to return to the barracks and rest up for tomorrow. I’ve seen enough.

The next day we meet up at the fountain like we were told. At first it was Tammi, Hazelf, and I. Sage came up later and then Riley sporting the “yeah I got some” look. Hazelf asked what happened, and Riley said nothing, so in the spirit of Razelf and me not having any luck myslelf, I said “He got some!” That may have ticked Riley off, but I couldn’t help it. My heart was still distraught from yesterday and all I felt was bitter. I know that wasn’t his fault, but I just can’t shake this mood. Anyhoo, Draxx and the Red Fool show up together with the Fool telling Draxx the same joke from before. Again, all I could hear was, “…and that’s when the bear fucked him.” Man I really need to know this joke. Maybe I’ll ask the Fool myself if we ever have any more down time. Tammi tells us information about the Gargoyle, and the Red Fool come up to us with a bag of healing potions. We each take one, because Ascended knows we are going to need it. The Red Fool also offers up the service of one of the Circus members of our choosing. We finally got introduced to the group with the Ogre being Ox, the human Agustus, Piper (who I already knew), the mummy man didn’t reveal his name, and the Eldakar was Carlyle. My first instinct was to pick Agustus on the off chance the gargoyle fried him. However, Tammi asked about the ogre, but Draxx said that he was already on another assignment. After some discussion, we decided on the archer, Carlyle, being that Lycore left us.

As we were about to leave, the two orphans from the other day came up to the Red Fool. This time however, they did not look like little orphans who were starving and needed money. Instead they pulled bag after bag of coins (I saw Sage’s expression change when one bag was pulled out). Somewhere in the mix I heard one of them say father. Were these the Fool’s children??? He nervously shooed them away. I didn’t know the sucker had kids. They must be following in daddy’s footsteps with all that coin on them. Anyway, we set out for the gargoyle. Carlyle shot an arrow with some weird rope attached to it at a building and proceeded to scale up the wall to the top of the building. I nodded at Tammi and activated my cloak in pursuit of him. We can’t afford to completely trust these guys and I don’t want them to get the drop on us if things go south. I don’t fly too high and risk being spotted giving up our element of surprise. I run along the tops of the buildings, using my wings to glide from rooftop to rooftop and keep pace with Carlyle. He seemed to dig it too.

We got some ways towards the north wall and the group below ran into a group of horny demons (not the good horny either). I see Carlyle knock 2 arrows on his bow and shoot. I look over the edge of the roof to see that he took out two demons in one shot. Tammie whipped out her white silver scimitar and slice through another creep. We moved on to the wall where through the busted gate, we could see some giant mounted cross bows (kinda like the one Ox has, but on wagons). There were also a couple of empty buildings by this gate which I saw Tammi, Hazelf, and Carlyle go into one. Before I could ask why, I heard the sound of wings beating in the air, hell I could feel it! Instinctively I head for a building, but on the other side of the road with Riley behind me. In the building I could see Sage. What the heck was she doing against the wall??? The gargoyle lands next to her and takes a swipe. I close my eyes in fear that I just lost another friend. I open them to see her still standing and Tammi behind it with her scimitar. Celestial guardians begin to pop up around the gargoyle too.

I hear Riley yell something about only heavy weapons doing damage to this creature because of its stone hide. I think I have something pretty hefty that can slay this creature (and I’m not referring to whats in my pants). I see this arrow explode (you read correctly EXPLODE) in the gargoyle’s face, and that’s when I saw my opportunity. I strummed one of my more powerful chords and let out a burst of energy through the wall of the building I was in and made a direct hit, slamming the beast against the wall. This provided an opportunity for sage to get away, and her Tammi, and Hazelf booked it to the other side of the wall. Hopefully they can get one of those crossbows working and take care of big ugly. Carlyle, Riley and I were throwing everything we have at this guy, but it doesn’t seem to be doing much damage. The gargoyle then takes to the air, hovering above the top of the wall. The beast lets out a menacing roar, but that doesn’t scare me. I’ve seen too much to let things scare me anymore. I let out another burst of energy and I think it finally got to the creep. I also see some giant arrows fly by, a couple hitting it, but shattering on impact and a few flying off in the distance.

The thing flies down again to take a swipe at Riley, and he gets hit. A second swipe comes again, but before it makes contact a white light starts emitting from Riley. Was this the will of the Ascended, I don’t know, but at least he’s ok. Before I can help I feel a burst of energy hit me right in the back. I turn around and lo and behold its my crazy ex girlfriend Sharnaynay (not really ex girlfriend. She wasn’t my girlfriend to begin with). What do I do?? Do I turn my attention to Sharnia and risk Riley and Carlyle getting killed? Do I keep my back to Shanaynay and risk getting myself killed?? I turn to her and see Sage with her trusty throwing spikes attacking. I thought I heard Tammi say “Hey! Nice rack!” Was she trying to get up on my girl. Sure, she might be a demon with the horns and wings and all that, but she’s still HOT. Anyway, I fire a bolt at demon babe, but her magical shields do their thing and here goes the boat all over again. I hear an explosion behind me, and someone shouting, “fuck you Carlyle!” I hope that means that the creature is dead. I see arrows fly towards Sharnia, only to be deflected by her shield. I see Hazelf from over the wall let loose this eruption of pure white energy obliterating my fantasy girl. Can’t say I’m not sad to see her go again, but at least I know there is no way in hell that she’s coming back.

We did it! I don’t believe that in a matter of days, we killed a minotaur, a gargoyle and demon Sharnaynay (and all of my cheeks are in tact). We can rest for now, but I know the job is not over. Hopefully at the end of this, I will have a whole collection of songs to annoy my friends with…if they’re still around….if I’M still around. The fuck am I thinking? OF COURSE WE’LL BE AROUND! We have each other, and that’s what we need to get though this! No one messes with us!

Report 4
Tammi's Report

Well, that was fun. And nobody died! That’s a plus. We met by the fountain at noon and I was surprised to see the Fool walk up with Draxx. He told us that we could choose one member of his little group to join us. My first choice was the big guy, Ox, but apparently he was needed elsewhere. I went through the group asking each of them what they believed their strengths were. In the end we picked the archer since we were short one.
As we started walking through the town to the north gate Carlyle, the archer, shot an arrow with a rope attached to the top of one of the buildings. Before I could even order him to, Fin activated his wing cloak thing and flew after him. I don’t know what the Fool is planning but it can’t be good so I want to keep a close eye on this guy. We ran into a small group of demons, but took care of them pretty quickly. Finally, we reached the gate. I felt Hazelf grab my head and turn it toward the opening of the gate. Excuse you, sir, my head is not for you to touch. But he did point out several large crossbows scattered on the other side of the gate. Those might be useful. Suddenly Hazelf ducked into a nearby building and warned us that the gargoyle was getting close. I followed him and Carlyle into one building while I assumed all the others went into another building.
The beast landed and when I looked out of the small window I saw Sage standing right out in the open, the gargoyle staring right at her. Fuck. What the fuck was she doing out there? Without giving it much thought I ran out of the building and attacked the gargoyle with my sword. Yeah, probably should have thought up a better plan. Just as it was about to attack Sage, Riley popped up out of nowhere and shot an arrow at its eye. Sage and I ran to the other side of the gate as quickly as our legs would allow. Hazelf joined us and we watched as Sage turned one of the crossbows over all on her own. Damn, making me question my “no sleeping with teammates” rule.
Around this time the creature flew into the air. Sage shot at it but the giant arrow shattered against its skin. Hazelf and I also attempted shots at it, his shattering and mine going way off target. Hey, I never claimed to be a master shooter or anything. Riley and Fin ended up doing most of the damage, but Carlyle killed it with a red tipped arrow. Sage and I had gone back to the gate but luckily the wall kept us from getting covered in gargoyle guts. Riley wasn’t so lucky.
I also noticed we had another opponent to face. Hovering a few feet over the ground was the most beautiful demon lady I’ve ever seen. Well, the only demon lady I’ve ever seen but that’s beside the point. I called out to her meaning to say something insulting but heard myself say “nice rack!” instead. Can’t blame me for appreciating nice things I guess. A flash of white light came from above the wall and the beautiful women was vaporized in front of our eyes.
Right now we are all resting. Hazelf is checking everyone for wounds and Riley is talking with Carlyle about something. I can’t believe we actually killed the damn thing. And a demon lady too. Damn, these guys are the luckiest sons of bitches I’ve ever met. I hope that they will allow me to continue leading them. They are just too much fun.

Journal of a Priest 21
Account by Ranger Hazelf

Terry has been secured for the most part. Here we are at the Northern wall of the city the corpse of the Gargoyle and the smoldering remains of Sharnia. It took a lot to get here, and I feel relived, we won, one more victory for the war. We had taken our time to move back through the city to Five cross, where the refugees and Range headquarters are. Upon reaching it Tammie reported to Drax and I asked if I could go and help the wounded. As we all were about to part two children approached and held out there hands, they looked covered in grime and rags. I gave them some of the dried rations I had with me and a few coins. They quickly took them and ran off into the crowd. It was a good feeling until the Fool snickered as if to insult my kindness. I told Tammie I would attend to my duties helping who I could, the pile of burning bodies was a shock, but after what happened at the medical field during the Merchant festival I didn’t gag this time. Hours seemed like days of either wrapping wounds, setting broken bones, or moving bodies to the burn pile. Then a commotion began to run through the crowd as I turned to look I saw quite the interesting sight. The crowd was parting and towering well above everyone else was a 17ft Oger, he wore plate armor, armed with a massive maw hammer and what looked like a ballista but for him could have been a hand crossbow. He had an eyepatch over one eye, one of his tusks was chipped. Amongst him I could see a few others as well. A human Olaran by the look with plate and all, very jovial and seemed to have an aura about him as the crowd seemed to ease with his presents. I did manage to spot someone small next to him, almost clinging to him, she was a short, with curly brown hair and what looked like a pan pipe at her side. Another individual was wrapped in desert clothing and as he blinked I swore I saw a tattoo over their eye of a scorpion. The one in the lead was an Eldakar, blond hair and just enough facial hair to style it in a manner, he had a long bow strapped over his shoulder. I see Dante and Shin go and great them, the individuals must all work for the Circus, we could use any help we can get. Then I got back to helping the wounded, hour after hour till eventually Tammie found me in the evening and told me that the Gargoyle was last seen in the north and that we were to head there in the morning, in the meantime I was to get some rest. I told her I wanted to wrap some things up here first then I’d get some much needed rest. She then left and I went and cleaned up as best I could and found Faylin, we talked for a bit and I finally learned that his magic comes from Celestia an entity who is of light but more commonly known as the Silver Unicorn. I had been wondering and it still was a relief to see him alive. I walked to were the Rangers had designated their barracks, some small tavern but I found a bed and I knelt down to pray, we are going up against these beings of flame, a massive gargoyle and possibly Sharnia. With all this craziness and everything there’s Riley. I don’t know why he’s fixated on me, I’m not that special of a person, I don’t what to disappoint but at the same time I have to be true to who I am. I do care for him and I need to let him know it. For some reason I just feel this sense of fractured between us all. Maybe it’s cause our group has changed so much in just a few days, Ren gone, Tiny dead and just today Lycore just cracked, just handed the bow to Riley and the token to Finian and left. So must has and probably will change and as much as I hope for the best I don’t know how I’d handle another loss. I feel so close to the edge, just ready to break all the oaths I’ve taken, leave for safe landings, just retreat for the grounds problems forever. Could I do it though, could I forsake everything, the thought scares me because I don’t know. It was a quiet nights rest I woke up with Tammie and Finian at the barracks as well, I got ready and such and went to the the meeting place as designated by Tammie. Riley and Sage showed up later and they talked some of the night, apparently some gathering had happened and Riley, well found someone to entertain himself with. I didn’t know how to respond, he tried for my affection for some bit and now he’s gone off for someone else, should I feel jealous? No one really filled me in but Drax came walking up with the Fool, who was trying to tell some obscene joke and Drax not seeming to care. They were followed by the main group I saw yesterday without the Oger. Drax refilled us on the details and said that one of the members of the circus would accompany us. I introduced myself and asked their names respectively, the Olaran man is Agustus Duran, his wife Pipper ,the short brown haired girl. Then the Eldakar introduced himself as Karlyle Oakmedow. The Youlin-Aradi figure gave no name, and I was informed that the Ogers name is Ox. Tammie asked them all some questions about what they could do each (skipping over Pipper completely [at this time I write this I wonder, with such an extraordinary group what dose she bring to the table, could her shy attitude be a front to catch enemies off gaurd, or worse is she being used and really is that timid]) Augustus pointed at a grand shield and is an important defender, the Aradi never said a word just motioned to his crossbow, and Karlyle motioned to his bow. Tammie decided to bring him along. As we were about to leave I looked over and two children approached the Fool, the twins from the other day but they looked different, well dressed and their hair looked cleaned and combed. They revealed what looked like bags and many coin purses. They looked at me and said how it was nice to know kind people still existed, and gullible. They then offered the money to their father, it didn’t register at first but it was clear these children were talking to the Red fool. I felt numb, I needed to leave, I need to escape this insanity I’ve just witnessed. I need to focus on the mission ahead. We get someways north and slip past a few skirmishes and everything seems disorganized, like the mercenaries and chindler are just fighting to fight, not really gaining ground. Karlyle then decided to scout from the rooftops and pulls out a cabled arrow and locks it to a stone chimney and up he runs, but before he’s out of sight Finian takes flight and follows him. Tammie seems pleased by this. We kept moving forward and we were about half way there when we were walking down a street and four of the Horn demons came skulking out of a nearby building, the very same kind of demons summoned by the Horns, from Four corners and the Merchant festival. Tammie for some reason was looking ant something way off in the wrong direction. I pointed out the four demons that noticed us and they began to charge. I still remember fighting them before and it is astounding that they went down so easy, sage slashed with her sword holding one off then I see an arrow fly past and kill it immediately. Two more arrows from the rooftops and two more demons killed. Looking up I see Karlyle and Finian beside him. Tammie in one swift swipe unsheathed her scimitar and sliced through the sickening demon, killing it instantly. We recovered the arrows and continued moving to the north gate. We were informed that a shipment of heavy ballistas were supposed to arrive and that using them would give us an edge. The norther gate was in shambles, broken, burnt, and busted buildings and cracked stone littered the area, but through the open gate I could see the ballistas, carts of the war machines overturned. I also heard it coming, the movement of air as she flapped her wings, I whispered for everyone to get down and take cover, diving into a small hut myself I was joined by Tammie and Karlyle. I kept down and listened as it landed atop the wall it began to sniff the air then I here’d it land again, this time on the ground. Tammie looked out the window and I looked over her shoulder. The Gargoyle was on the ground looking straight at Sage who was perched up against the wall. Tammie cursed under her breath and vaulted through the window and charged, she tried to strike with her scimitar but the blade seemed to bounce off the stone skin, it only looked over its shoulder and what seemed to be a smirk before its attention returned to Sage. I acted and summoned my Solders, two next to the beast and two in the wall with ranged weapons. Then Riley shouted out from by a building that only Heavy weapons would be able to do damage through the stone skin. He then pulled back his bow took aim and fired off one good shot, the gargoyle reared back its head and seemed hurt, but quickly shook it off. Karlyle then took a shot at it with a red tipped arrow, I remember seeing them used by Jon back at leaf. The arrow exploded against the creatures back with very little effect. This all gave Safe the opportunity to run past the gargoyle and through the gate. Then I heard Finian start singing (or was it yelling, perhaps screaming?) and this burst of purple energy plowed through the building and into the gargoyle, subsequently slamming it into the wall. I order my guardians to attack but as I do there’s a shift in the air and they’re gone, dispelled. There must be another player on this field and I didn’t see anyone from the building so I went and charged one of the balistas. As I got there I heard another crash into the wall and then saw the Gargoyle rise above the wall. Sage, quite marvelously, flipped the cart, saw it had a bolt ready, then aimed and fired. If it had done any damage I would have described it to Finian for him to write a song about it. The bolt bounced off the skin and flew well into the distance. She then darted off to the next closest one. I would rush over to it and Tammie looked around for more ammunition to no avail and then went off for the ones furthers. I took aim with it and took a shot and the bolt hit its target but simply shattered on contact. I flew over to the third ballista and readied a shot, after Sage took another shote but it seemed to miss again. and Tammie took a shot with the other one. Sage runs up to the gate and I can barely see but she’s throwing her spikes at something. Tammie runs up to Sage and I hear her shout out “Hey nice rack” not sure what exactly she meant but I then see a large burst of fire in the gateway. From where I am I hear only blasts and crashes and then I hear an explosion and Riley curses at Karlyle. I can’t sit anymore and I fly up to see over the wall. I see her, Sharnia and her red bat wings aloft in the air. I see the Gargoyle dead and Finian is a bloody mess, and Sharnia is just grinning. I focus all the will I have a shout out at her. I want her ton, back to whatever depths she crawled out from and I let loose a powerful bolt of light that catches her off guard and flat out incinerates her. I was exuberant we managed to destroy the Gargoyle and end Sharnia again before she hurt to many. I feel good now. I make rounds and heal those who are hurt. And we all sit and rest some. I see Riley sitting with Karlyle and I ask if they’re both fine and they reply that they are. Riley brings up that he’s still covered in the gargoyle blood. I tell him that there’s a well some ways away, and offer to walk with. We talk, I don’t believe most of it is relevant for an official report but something sticks out that worries me most. Our talk turns to an argument and amid him ranting he says “and maybe I did something stupid”. I don’t catch it at first but when I asked about it he tries to reassure me that things will work out, maybe. It’s something that stuck out and when the time comes, he needs to see an adept. I do trust him and I hope for the best but someone should know this. I don’t feel good anymore.


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