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Welcome to Episode 44 of the Rescued by Dragons fantasy fiction podcast, Tales of the Brunch Club:
My name is Brian Messmer and I am not only your storyteller but the dungeon master behind the homebrew Dungeons and Dragons campaign this adventure is based on. Please join me as I tell the tale of how my players, and the dice, ruined and improved my perfectly laid plans.
But first, a quick recap…
In episode 43, the Plain Truth, Elora approached Rajat in the snow, who did not believe that she had lost her memory. Rajat promised to call off the gnoll attack and tell Elora everything he knows about her past, should she and her comrades help him to find his way back to the Feywild.
The Brunch Club decided to send a pigeon to Trademeet, warning them of the impending attack. Saberhagan shared his knowledge of the Planes with the party: the Material Plane, the Elemental Planes, the Astral Plane, the Shadow Fel, and the Feywild. The latter being a parallel plane existing in the same space as the material plane.
The party returned to the library, where Devon gave Salys her newly charmed pendant. Librarian Schittman reluctantly aided the party by selling them a planar fork attuned to the Feywild.
They encountered Kalavar and called in their favor to help them swiftly remove the threat of the gnolls marching on Trademeet. To their surprise and pleasure, Kalavar invited the party to ride along. Together they overtook the gnolls and eliminated them.
Episode 44 “Elf Help”
The sun was setting over the Crystal Spire Library, the city of Elnor aglow under the blanket of the sun’s last rays. Against the bright sunlight, Kalavar and the Brunch Club were no more than a glint on the horizon, slowly growing larger against the sky as they approached the Crystal Spire.
Kalavar landed with remarkable grace for his size, kneeling to let his passengers climb off of his back. Their legs weary, the Brunch Club took a moment to stretch, bemoaning their tightened muscles.
“My debt to you is now paid, I wish you the best in your future endeavors,” The dragon stated.
He was met with profuse thanks from their party for his aid in defeating the gnolls.
“I know we’re really small and you are very big but… if you ever need our help with anything, let us know.” Jory offered, regarding Kalavar in perpetual awe.
“I will keep that in mind,” the bronze dragon grumbled, his voice cutting through the square. “If you ever need to seek my counsel, I’ll likely be found on the spire, or in the council chambers.”
“Wait,” Salys started, “Can you fit in the council chambers?” As she finished her question, the form of the glimmering dragon began to shift before their eyes, revealing a late middle-aged man in bronze robes in its place.
“It’s a bit easier when I’m in this form,” Kalavar responded, with a slight grin. “I do find it a bit restrictive otherwise, so I prefer to maintain my true form when possible. Plus, I find people are more apt to obey me as a dragon than as an old, bearded human.”
The group agreed, thanking Kalavar once more for his assistance and bowing in respect for their companion.
“I suspect it will be some time before we see one another again. Goodbye.”
As he strode away, the citizens of Elnor gazed in amazement at the robed man, awkwardly bowing as he passed them by, too awestruck to make a sound.
After stopping at the Aviary to send a pigeon to Trademeet, the group decided to find an inn in the Quartz district and treat themselves to a well-deserved meal, inviting Solania to join them.
They wandered into the Quartz district, settling on a night at the Gold Stone Dreamery. The Inn’s walls were made of golden stone, and the carpets deep red. Warm air washed over the party, relieving them from the harsh winter night. The concierge explained to the group the rooms available at the Inn, and each eagerly paid for luxurious rooms in which to rest and bathe after weeks of travel and battle. All but Salys and Jory opted for individual rooms, who chose to purchase a night in the master suite. The concierge assured the two that there would be plenty of space and accommodation for the pair of small beings.
“Do you have a courier service?” Diesa asked the concierge.
Jory blushed, “W-we would like to send a message to Solania, asking her to join us for dinner! Tell her it’s from Jory!” He hiccuped.
“Tell her it’s from the Brunch Club.” Diesa interjected, giving Jory the side-eye.
Jory slid a silver to the concierge, who nodded in approval. “She will have the message within the hour.”
The Inn was among the nicest places the party had stayed. Each room had a warm fireplace, and the walls constructed with elegant stonework. The party took time to bathe, don fresh clothing, and enjoy a few moments of peace before making their way to the tavern.
A tall, slender woman was standing in the doorway of the dining room. She turned to face the party, a look of recognition washing over her face.
“Oh. I got your message, it’s a pleasure. I took the liberty of reserving us a private table already, I hope you don’t mind.” Solania stated. She was wearing a fox fur shawl over her trademark dress, a long slit in her skirt revealing slender, toned legs.
Solania glanced at the halfling, “Um, hello. Shall we eat?”
Solania leaned over to the host, whispering to him quietly. “I’ve reserved us the room in the back, follow me,” she gestured to the party.
As the group walked through the dining room, they couldn’t help but notice a group of disgruntled guests carrying their plated dinners from the back of the restaurant, one of them grumbling, “I can’t believe they’ve kicked us out of our seats!”
The group settled into their seats, and Drusilla turned to Solania, “Are we able to speak privately here?”
Solania nodded, “In a moment.”
She waved her arms, and her hair suddenly began to blow around her. Chanting, Solania drew a circle around the table in the air, and the other groups in the dining room stared in awe. Suddenly, the sounds of the restaurant surrounding them could no longer be heard, despite the fact that they could see guests speaking to one another and passing wary glances at their table.
“That should do the trick,” she finished and sat herself down at the table.
Before long, the chef at the restaurant brought out the meal’s first course, passing a nervous glance at Solania. In a thick accent, he explained the dish as “thin-cut potatoes, cooked in animal fat and sprinkled with salt. We encourage you to enjoy them with our house fish sauce,” he placed the plate at the center of the table, revealing a heap of fragrant, golden brown potatoes.
Solania nodded in approval, “It looks like a true delicacy, my compliments.”
After the chef parted, little time passed before the group dove into conversation.
Turning to Solania, Diesa noted, “So, we found Kalavar.”
Solania smiled, “I noticed. I hope it wasn’t too much trouble.”
The group exchanged nervous glances, admitting that they had, in fact, died just briefly in their attempt to bring the dragon back to Elnor.
“So, what happened to the rest of The Five?” Jory asked, changing the subject.
“Well, the ones who supported Kalavar are still here, acting as advisors to Kalavar. The Council is no longer as you knew it.” As Solania explained the political shifts in Elnor, her demeanor remained as calm as if she were reporting the weather the city had experienced over the prior weeks.
She explained that Ilyan had promptly fled the city after Kalavar’s takeover, along with Teufel (?), although she was unsure of their precise motives.
“On paper, they were doing nothing wrong,” Solania mused, “but I’m sure the sudden appearance of a large, bronze dragon made them wary of… something coming to light. Meanwhile, Nulculth, the former number one, decided to retire and pursue quiet studies in the library, foregoing his political career.”
“Do you agree with all of the recent changes?” Drusilla asked.
“Most of them. Kalavar has reinstated the legality of worship in Elnor, and Divine magic. Most of the Instructors have been relieved of their position; a few have been made example of in the square for particularly heinous misdoings. For example, Kalavar ate Master Kormir after evidence came to light of his nefarious activities, provided by a group of vigilantes you may be familiar with.”
The group shifted, imagining Kormir’s gruesome demise. Solania continued, “The Marble District, once home to the city Temples, has also had many of the old Temples restored. It’s quite an interesting place to visit now.”
The Brunch Club was pleased to hear that most of the changes in Elnor seemed to be for the better, including the cessation of the underground threat they had been sent to clear with Vorjhon weeks ago.
Solania admitted apologetically that the city would never know how close to demise they truly were, and would not know it was the Brunch Club they could thank for their safety.
“Solania, are you a wizard?” Jory asked.
“Yes,” Solania answered quizzically, unsure of the direction the inquiry would take.
“Can you… cast planeshift?” He continued, emboldened by his last several glasses of wine.
“Yes, I can,” she admitted.
“What kind of…implications are there for sending another being into another plane?’ Diesa asked.
Solania shifted in her seat, wary, “Sending a being into another plane without their consent is illegal, in most places.”
“Oh goodness, we mean consensual plane shifting!” Elora declared nervously.
“Ah, well if necessary safety precautions are taken, there shouldn’t be any negative implications!” Solania answered. “Anyone going to another plane should have a way to get back, if they want to.”
“What if we are sending someone undesirable into another plane, and they don’t want them? What if we disrupt the balance of the Fae? Even if it meant a better outcome for our plane?” Drusilla asked.
Solania leaned forward. “So… you want to send someone, consensually, into another plane, who has done terrible things. When they get to the Fae, you are concerned that someone is going to meet them,such as an Arch Fae, and be so infuriated that they would exact revenge against those who sent them?”
“Yes.” The party said in unison.
Solania laughed. “Oh, this is exciting. By the way… that scenario seems entirely plausible.” The members of the group paled, and Solania clapped her hands, “have we ordered yet?”
The Brunch Club decided that details were prudent, explaining their experience with Rajat, the gnolls, and his connection to Elora over their meals. As they explained Elora’s memory loss, presumably from her return from the Fae, a puzzled look passed over Solania’s face.
“There’s very common knowledge around Elves that one of the side-effects of returning from the Faewild is memory loss. Elves, though, are immune to that. The Fae in your blood means that you never need to worry about losing your memory upon return.”
“Wait, what would cause Elora to lose her memory then?” Drusilla asked.
“I don’t know. But it seems whatever the reason for you to have gone to the Faewild may also be the cause of your memory loss – but it is impossible for the Fae itself to have brought this on.”
“Could I have been cursed?” Elora asked.
Solania nodded. “I think it’s possible your memory was stolen. It seems it was either malicious, or perhaps you learned something you weren’t meant to, and asked someone to wipe your memory for you.”
A silence passed briefly over the group, only to erupt into theories regarding Elora’s memory loss and ideas for their next steps; whether or not her memory was maliciously taken, and whether to provide Rajat the means to return to the Fae.
Exhausting a range of options, they eventually agreed that they needed more information from the Library. Remembering Schitman’s reluctance to help them in the past, Salys asked Solania if she knew anything of the strange librarian.
“Ah yes, Schitman. He is quite the odd duck indeed, a bit tightly wound. He does love all things Elvish, especially the Faewild.”
“Is there anything we can give him, to grease the wheels, if you will?” Jory asked.
“Something Elvish.” Solania suggested with a shrug, and Drusilla gasped.
“I could share my story – about my life and my prophecy.”
“Your prophecy?” Solania asked, curious. “Can you share it?’
Oddly, Drusilla had brought her full travel pack to dinner. She sifted through her belongings, eventually pulling out an old piece of parchment. Obliging, she began to read the words that foretold her fate:
When black meets silver in a world of white.
On paths untraveled to shed new light
Seed of sable but cousin of crimson
False life seeks death and by lust is driven
The weak now strong with untapped power
Though power ‘twas gained in the darkest hour
Unexpected, untested, untravelled, unfolds
Horrors of haunting origins untold.
By end, will be cleansed and anew will begin
Power without and strength within.
A few moments of silence followed Drusilla’s reading, and she took a deep breath.
“Guys, I think this is my song. If i play this for Schittman, I’m sure he would help us.” she said, sitting back in her seat.
Solania nodded, thoughtful. “Do you… know the prophett Toleria?” She asked, and Drusilla shook her head. The other members of the party appeared equally oblivious.
“She was a moon elf Diviner from several millennia ago; she wrote multiple prophecies, and that sounds like one of hers.”
Discussing the prophecy further, Solania informed the group that it was impossible to tell the immediacy of a Prophecy’s tellings, and told them that many of Toleria’s prophecies foretold of a being called the Hungerer. According to legend, the Hungerer was a being that would arrive with the intent to devour all of the Light in the world.
The meal wore on, and eventually Solania declared that it was time she retired, offering to pick up the tab. Bidding them goodnight, the Brunch Club also decided to retire to bed, ready to pay a visit to the Library in the morning.
The next day, the group rose early, eager to go TO THE LIBRARY and find Schitman.
They quickly located Schitman, in his normal spot, deep in the study of scrolls and books scattered about him.
“‘Sup nerd?” Diesa asked as they approached, much to the chagrin of her companions. Schitman quickly recoiled in offense, but after an abrupt apology seemed appeased by the dwarf’s charm.
“Erm, um, hello. What are you doing here?” He asked, “Have you found a use for the planar fork? And why do you have a shield?”
Drusilla sat across from Schitman, adjusting herself as she moved to the cold stone floor of the library. “We are here for information, but we thought we could share some information with you first in exchange. For return, we would like information about the location of Fae touchpoints, and the Obsidian Watch.”
Schitman paused, and carefully moved several papers from his lap. Cautiously curious, he looked to Elora, “Well, on with it then.” He said.
Drusilla began to drum on her shield, the sound reverberating through the library. With flourish she read through the verses of her prophecy, her eye contact with Schitmann unwavering. When she finished, she handed the stunned librarian the scroll the prophecy was written on.
Schitman studied it carefully, then asked, “Where did you get this? Is this your handwriting?”
He slowly stood from his seated position, staring at Drusilla.
“This was given to me, by a friend… at the end.” She responded, somber.
Schitman evaluated the parchment, and briskly turned on his heel, walking away. Drusilla followed, although he was difficult to keep up with as he navigated the vast aisles of the library. They passed sections of dusted, worn books on the Faewild, Elven History, and finally Schitman slowed at a section filled with Prophecies, his finger trailing the spines of books as he searched.
Finally, he pulled out one of the books, a leatherbound sheath of papers that looked as if they could crumble at his touch. He gently moved them to a nearby workstation, spreading them across the table.
“This prophecy you read,” he began, his eyes alight and voice trembling with excitement, “It sounds as if it may be a part of the Moon Fall Prophecy… it has been missing for over 4,000 years.”
He handed Drusilla a parchment, of which the top part seemed damaged. A paragraph remained, and Schitman carefully held Drusilla’s prophecy alongside the one he had drawn from the stacks.
“I think… this might be it. The meter, the words. It fits!” His eyes glistened. “Whoever gave you that discovered a piece of Toleria’s prophecy.”
“So, there’s more?” Elora asked, staring at the parchments.
“There is… it’s called ‘Moonfall’” Schitman explained, and began to read the remaining verses of the prophecy:
But power crafts fame, fortune, and pain,
All may be lost when there’s much to be gained.
Threads so dark and threads so bright,
Entwined as one and as one, must fight.
The fate of the moon-touched,
A solemn catastrophe,
But others will succumb to similar atrophy
A vessel of death and a reaper of souls
Will ever progress as sorrow it sows
It may be halted by worthy foes.
Lest the darkness consume and forever grow.
After his reading, Schitman stood stunned. “I, I don’t quite know how to react. I’ll be sure to get you a full written copy of the text but… this is incredible.”
He looked to Drusilla, “I hope this is just a nice piece of history and naught to do with the Hungerer.” The group was solemn, considering the implications of the text.
Promising to return with the transcribed text, Schitman briskly walked away, his leather soles whisking across the floor with renewed vigor.
After a time, Schitman returned with a scroll, handing it to Drusilla. “As promised,” he stated. “I believe I owe you something in return? What do you need?” He added, seeming more intent to assist the group in light of recent events.
Salys explained their plight, and desires to learn as much about Rajat and the Obsidian Watch as possible, as well as touchpoints to enter the Fae.
“I’ll see what I can do,” he promised. “First, Rajat – let’s try this way.” He scanned several books, opening multiple volumes and promptly putting them away. Finally, he settled on one book.
“Ah, yes. This mentions a druid, although they do not name him until later. I knew I recognized the name! It described tribes in the bloodwood, and this druid passed his ceremonies four or five-hundred years ago. It recognizes him as a new spirit guide in a Bloodwood village, but not much beyond this.”
He continued searching through the histories of Elnon, scanning books in the surrounding areas. He sighed. “I’m not finding much else,” he admitted solemnly.
“Is there a record of the Obsidian Watch?” Salys asked, and Schittman perked up.
“Ah, yes! This way!” He exclaimed, leading the Brunch Club to another section of the library. He soon pulled out a book that detailed the activities of the Obsidian Watch and its members. He explained what he could find of the monster hunters and their illustrious kill list, which included a Bahir, a young dragon, and a Wyvern.
The members were named Kellgorn Kellarny, a Dwarf Fighter, Alexis Sinclair, a human warlock, Brendan Bearclaw, a human druid, and Elora Riverleaf, an elf ranger.
Schittman scrolled through the book, “it looks as though all but Kellgorn were missing and presumed dead, aside from Kellgorn. It appears he retired to the north, away from monsters.”
Finally, Shitman agreed to divulge what he knew regarding Fey touchpoints.
“Well, off the top of my head, there is rumored to be one in the mountains near the Sable Forest. A few day’s travel into the mountains, there is rumored to be one at the tip of its peak. It is said that it is guarded by a Fey Creature.”
“Would you want to be our guide?” Salys asked, hopeful.
“No, absolutely not. But I would pay you handsomely for a transcript of your meeting with this Fey Creature, should you survive the journey.”
Schitman agreed to provide his best directions to the peak, documenting what he could of the landmarks and directions of which he was aware. He turned them over to the group, “Please,” he urged, “document this journey for me.”
Leaving the library, the group was invigorated by their newly gained knowledge of Drusilla’s prophecy and Elora’s past. They were eager to learn what the future held for them. Discussing their next move, they agreed (despite objections from Jory and Diesa) that they should sail to Sturgeon as the quickest route to the mountains.
“Well,” Jory started, “I think we should first send a message to Rajat. It seems we have some information for him.”
Our tale will continue in Episode 45
Episode 44 was written by Dominic White, Bethany Powers, and myself, Brian Messmer.
The audio reording of our DnD game session that inspired this episode will be available on our podcast channel this Thursday under the name, Brunch Club LIVE!
Valuable contributions to the story were added by the role playing of:
- Bethany Powers, who plays Diessa
- JP Black, who plays Drusilla
- Liz Raychard, who plays Elora
- Anna Flemke, who plays Salys
- Dominic White, who plays Vorjhon
- And Brian Messmer, who plays everyone else
The recording of our Dungeons and Dragons game session that inspired this episode will be available on our podcast channel this Thursday under the name, Brunch Club LIVE!
If you enjoyed this podcast, please help us out by sharing it with your friends and rating and reviewing us on your favorite podcast platform. We’d really appreciate it.
More information about Rescued by Dragons and ways to support and follow us can be found at RescuedByDragons.com.
Thank you for listening, and please join me next week to see what my players’ choices, and the roll of the dice, have in store.