The Enmity of Scolris, Part IV: The War of Six Nations

Just days after the negotiations betwixt Qor Qogol and the Theocracy, the Undercity of Djeir deployed their Amethyst Avengers to deter the raging hordes of skeletal marauders just outside the bounds of their home. Though they made swift work of the Risen menace, the Avengers noted that their numbers had diminished significantly, sowing renewed concern amongst the court of the Empress as they sought to account for nearly one-hundred skeletal troops.

As Djeir defended their sovereignty, the city-states of the surface world watered the earth in unwitting homage to the Earthen Lord. Led by the military strategy of Sryaen Kavoros and Benedicto Silverain and held upright by the determined resilience of Commander Yettave Arcan, Tyrant Maeve, Presiding Voice Bhalwyn, and Daegan Greenbark, the threefold alliance pressed on to capture the Bravestarr Homestead from the Theocracy’s grasp. In a daring maneuver, the clever strategists of Spinesreach nearly captured Duiran with a small elite force of hoplites before their plans were thwarted by the vigilance of Valeria and harried command of Bloodhunter Daegan. As the situation grew more dire for Qor Qogol’s allies, the Deepest City directed their skeletal legions to apply pressure upon Enorian’s position in Mournhold – an attempt foiled by the prowess of their disciplined warmages.

Even as Spinesreach fought a war on four sides, they discussed amongst themselves how best to capitalise on the alliance they had so recently fostered. In the middle of Haernos, the Regent found herself visited by a runescribed delivery golem bearing not only a letter from the Court Mage of Qor Qogol, but also the promised arcane formulae necessary to enact the ritual mentioned at their negotiations. The ritual of High Endorone called for an offering of Chaos, a massive amount of elementally pure blood, a dizzying amount of memory-laden bones, and a prodigious sacrifice of flesh – as well as suggestion to attempt deriving any or all of these from the enemy forces.

Regent Virelen and the Viceroys immediately formulated a plan posthaste and put their faith in Strategos Sheryni to buy the time needed for the Theocracy to enact their preparations. Deciding amongst themselves that the ritual must be held at Mournhold to ensure the proper amount of sacrificial power, the Regent distributed the necessary work to her fellow leaders and hid the finer details of this plot from most of her fellow conclavists as matter of operational security.

Determined to ensure that Chakrasul’s holdings remained intact during this terrifying ritual, Architect Legyn took it upon itself to command the Archivium to accompany it on an excursion into Umbral Chaos. Aided by a Lgakt-affine coin acquired from the Indelible, the Archivists set about weaving complex protective wards around each Umbral Noble to anchor them to the plane and protect them against a coming danger that Legyn refused to elaborate upon. During this clandestine mission, Chaos-aspected ascendants, Indorani, and Oneiromancers all felt disturbances within the outer realms, sending ripples of fresh concern throughout all of Sapience.

As the wards settled upon the Empress herself, may she live forever, Voice Bhalwyn and Singer Aolin took to the Astral Realm to uncover any evidence that would lead to further revelations. Questioning Ecdysia the Illuminator, Bhalwyn’s liege-lady of Astral, yielded a torrent of concern and half-formed information. Trembling with her every answer, Ecdysia implored Bhalwyn and his companions to settle protective charms around the entirety of Astral’s nobility in hopes of weathering the storm from an unknown invader beyond this particular realm’s reach. Though Spinesreach arrived to put a stop to this plot, the Illuminator had already put an enchanted lantern in her vassal’s hands, ensuring the furtherance of her desperate gambit.

With the Unforgotten Court occupied planning their next month, a brief lull in the bloodshed came to pass. Seeing this as the perfect opportunity to strike, Djeir deployed a cadre of assassins to chase down the Theocracy’s leaders, starting first with the disgraced ex-noble known as Elene Arcan. Though a rakish Theatre of Shadows assassin managed to strike down his mark, he failed to escape the city in the aftermath and thus paid the ultimate price for his loyalty to the Amethyst Throne. Later in the week, both Legyn and Virelen received visits, with the latter falling prey to a troubadour named Espin. Despite Boube’s dogged attempts to stop the criminal, he met the same fate, his guts splattered across Spirean cobble as an expression of Djeir’s distaste.

Even as the alliance pressed in upon Stormcaller Crag, Strategos Sheryni refused any thought of surrender. When all eyes were turned elsewhere amidst the carnage, she and two loyal troops snuck into the Crag and swiftly rallied reinforcements to stymie Duiran’s grasp upon the territory – an action that purchased much needed time to enact the rest of her homeland’s scheme. With fresh wolfine blood steaming upon the dark rocks of the crag, Virelen breathed a sigh of relief and published the final outline for the ritual before sitting back to put her full faith in the rest of her compatriots.

Several days later, Viceroy Legyn collaborated with Docent Vara to establish a delivery method for the elementally pure blood. Utilising their trusted alchemical workbench and a tiny dose of elemental air, the two perfected a method to pressurise the blood into iron canisters for ease application to the streets of Mournhold. Not to be outdone, Viceroy Elene and her husband Whirran scoured the realms of Chaos in search of a suitable offering before eventually concluding upon Akna, the Malformed Maiden for reasons utterly incomprehensible to the Grand Library.

As the Theocracy scrambled to arrange the bones and blood, however, the alliance marched troops into the territory of Rimewatch in an effort to force Spinesreach to stand down – an act that would, unfortunately, be too late by a mere day…

Penned by my hand on Kinsday, the 24th of Haernos, in the year 2 AC.