20 Spring, 2979
Arcamedus Edelos was awakened by a knocking at his door. He glanced wearly and grumbling something about midnight couriers and their bad timing. He rose from his bed and opened the door to show a rain drenched cushani. The feline’s black fur was matted down from the rain, and it looked highly annoyed. “Message from Dramos Vendictum,” he growled, holding out a satchel. Arcamedus paid the cushani and took the sachel before closing the door and walking over to his oaken desk.
The old tiefling lit a candle and opened the sachel to reveal a scroll case, which he opened as well and pulled out several pieces of parchment. The writing was quick and sloppy, though Arcamedus was able to stumble through it. When he finished, he leaned back in his chair, scratching his beard idly as he thought. So Hawk was dead and his daughter was missing. It was damned inconvenient timing with the hostilities between Sadire and Alakar flaring up. He shook his head a bit and sat up straight. It was time to summon the rest of the Sunriders so a very important decision could be made.
21 Spring, 2979
Dramos flicked his tendrils to one side of his scaly bronze head in annoyance. He was the first to arrive at the meeting onboard the Deliverance galleon, and he hated waiting on others. The dragonborn slid back into his seat just as the door opened to the captain’s quarters. The rest of the Sunrider council filed into the room. The two tieflings and two humans made their way into the room, taking a seat at the table in front of the captain’s desk. “Finally,” muttered Dramos.
Felocia Riscmor, a human spy with pale skin and raven hair smirked as she settled in her chair. “Dear Dramos, you never change.”
Arcamedus gave a quiet chuckle before clearing his throat and speaking. “Let’s get this meeting started. We must decided if and how the Sunriders will deal with the current situation in Masshiro. You all have been informed of the situation at hand, so put your thoughts down on the table.”
Dramos was the first to reply, “The fact that Hawk was killed disturbes me the most. It had to take careful planning to kill that man, and I think that dragon dung of a commander at arms was in on it.”
Vekvernar Respite, a heavily scarred tiefling coughed at the comment. “I fought with Ralma at the Seige of Rylos. The man is a patriot,” he growled, baring pointed teeth at the dragonborn.
Tatlos Ossler, a heavily armored human, spoke quietly but firmly. “There is no need for anger Vekvernar. There is no question that the speech given by Ralma draws questions as to his motive. He will need to be investigated to verify his loyalty.”
“Agreed,” nodded Arcamedus. “We also need to investigate Alakar to see if they are truly behind these acts, and thirdly, we need to search for Alegra Hawk. She is as level headed as her father and would be helpful in avoiding war.” The others nodded in agreement. “Good. I propose then that we send out word to the chapter houses to send their best people for a gathering so we can get to work.”
The old tiefling reached into one of his pouches and drew out a map, which he unrolled across the table. “Now let’s get down to the details.”
30 Spring, 2979
Arcamedus watched as a rowboat pulled away from the Deliverance under the full moon sky. His gaze traveled along the horizon and saw only the moonlight reflecting off the waters of Lake Yoshiro. His mind wandered to the earlier meetings that had begun at sundown. A full 30 members of the Sunriders had arrived on board from the various chapter houses throughout Sadire. He was thankful that he managed to get so many. Only one group remained for him to speak to and perhaps the most important. With a quiet prayer to the Wyrms the tiefling pulled away from the railing and headed inside.
The tiefling walked into the captain’s quarters where a group of Sunriders awaited him. He had saved the most important mission for the most experienced Sunriders outside of the chapter headmasters. Seated at the table was Ghesh Emeris the dragonborn Destiny Knight, Montblanc Crosz the tiefling Judge, Andrik Stonehammer the dwarven Circle Dancer, Still Waters the half orc Martial Artist, Darrin Lugonn the human Cleric of the Sun, and Elikko the half-elven Summoner. Arcamedus walked across the room and took a seat at the head of the table.
“Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for coming. I’m sure you have been informed of the unrest within Sadire over the past season. In the warlord’s attempt to seek diplomacy with the shadow elves, questionable aggressive actions by the nation of Alakar have suddenly taken root in the city of Masshiro. These actions, whomever may be enacting them, threatens the peace the warlords seek.”
Crosz leaned forward in his chair and spoke up, “It still makes no sense why the warlords would seek diplomacy with the Lothanewi. They are allied with Ilium.”
Arcamedus gave a slight nod of his head. “I…don’t disagree with the statement Crosz,” he said with a sigh. “Though we had tried to head off any formal alliances with the Empire, certain individuals have proven difficult to stop. Lothanewi has also been an uneasy ally of the Empire, and some of the walords think that they can be brought to a neutral stance at the least. The one benefit is that it gives us a measure of room to work with the elven resistance. Should Sil’owen’elli be able to bring the elves back into the Council…well, it could prove to be a turning point in power against the Empire.”
Andrik lifted a brow along with Darrin, “Mara Sil’owen’elli is but a child. How could she possibility hope to restore the sun elves to power?”
The old tiefling just shook his head, “I don’t know but that is the resistance’s plan. Alas, this is a discussion for another time perhaps. The matter at hand is to stablize Sadire and that starts with Masshiro. Our spies have been able to determine that Velero Hawk is presumed dead, though they have not been able to recover or identify the body. With Warlord Hawk out of the picture, leadership of the city falls to his daughter, Alegra Hawk. She has gone missing on a venture to Lothanewi.”
The group of Sunriders whispered among themselves for a few moments at the news. Arcamedus waited a until they finished to continue. “Lothanewi blames Alakar for the kidnapping, but we have our doubts. Alakar has, of course, offically denied and denounced the action. It doesn’t leave us a whole lot to go off of. All the evidence to this points does point to the Church as being involved, but it really isn’t their style,” he stated before leaning back in his chair. “Your mission is to enter Lothanewi and find any evidence of Lothanewi involvement with Alegra Hawk’s disappearance. If you find Alegra, rescue and extract her to the safe house at Gilandra’s Point.
32 Spring, 2979
The group finally came to a stop as they reached the edge of the forest of Lothanewi. Ghesh raised his scaly head to the air and took a sniff at the night air. “Smells like death is waiting.”