So you were escorted back to the palace for another audience with the King, Advisor Sodor and the head mage. They listened to your revelations. On hearing that they found the Dwarven stone masons the King proclaimed that you have now earned their key to the city and the feast tomorrow night will be a success. On hearing about the “new” portal, the head mage called you “mistaken fools”. He stated that what you claimed is not possible. The knowledge of creating portals has been lost for thousands of years and no-one is powerful enough now even if they knew how. On hearing about the Tieflings letter to all rulers, the King declares the Tiefling to be a “cheeky scamp” and claims that he’ll put him in his place should their paths ever cross.
Towards the end the King falls silent for a few moments and then drops the jolly fool façade that he has been presenting and decides to confide in the heroes. First he asks them to swear an oath that they are not enemies of the Kingdom of Greyhawk and have not been working with the Tiefling and that everything they have revealed is the truth. He asks them to swear this oath on their life, their family name, their honour and their chosen god. Each hero chooses something dear to them and swears upon it….except Riley who swears on his dead parents lives and the gods that he doesn’t believe in or respect.
Once the oath has been sworn he led you all to another area of the castle, on the same floor but the whole corridor has guards along it. You were led into a room that has a single massive table in the middle, chairs around the outside and some food / drinks tables around the outside. On the table is a number of sheets of paper, each one was a map of a different kingdom of the Flanaess continent. The maps were all of different ages, designs, authors, scales, colours. But all laid out in a specific order to give an over-all impression of what the entire continent might look like.
On top of the maps were a lot (72) small polished black pebbles. There is also a jar of extra/spare pebbles on top of the food/drink tables. The King asked if you can guess the purpose of the map and what the stones represent. After a few moments he explained that each pebble represented a place where they have had a report of strange goings-on that they now realise is almost certainly attributed to one of the ‘ tears’ that the heroes had found and destroyed.
He said that the first word of the tears turned up twelve weeks ago. Since then more and more reports have flooded in by the day. The reports vary but always include a circle of land (of various sizes) being tainted or corrupted, sometimes the dead rising, sometimes living creatures going mad, disease and poison are common effects too.
The Tringlee tear is the first real report that they’ve had of someone getting close enough to a tear to see what they are dealing with. So that means you guys are also the first to destroy a tear and the first to encounter the Tiefling too.
He also explained that the feast tomorrow night is not truly in their honour, that was just a convenient lie for which he is grateful for their unknowing compliance. The feast is really because various other rulers and representatives of kingdoms are visiting to meet in this very room and discuss plans and exchange knowledge…..with a feast afterwards that they are all invited to. He then answered most of your questions to clarify details.
Advisor Sodor informed you that sages have been saying for years that change was coming, so they have begun precautions but were not prepared for something on this scale. The Greyhawk Sentinels were set up nearly thirty years ago as part of the precautions. They are the ones that have mainly brought in the reports of the tears found so far.
The head mage informed you that he has researched the name Barbatos Malphas and has discovered that a Tiefling going by that name did study in the Greyhawk school of magic many decades ago. He was an average student from the Iuz region, with seemingly no more potential than any of his peers. He was competent at magical theory but struggled with the casting side and after six years or mediocre progress he left of his own accord. No records say where he went to. He has also researched the stone circle you described and extended his already expansive knowledge on the subject. He confessed that they do not have a list of circle locations but believe that thousands of years ago there was an extensive network of them that was used by arch mages for quick travel between cities. There is at least one inside the city, in the grounds of the Greyhawk School of Magic. It has been inactive (assumed broken) for thousands of years though and now has a guard watching it.
The king then informs them that a war council will meet tomorrow but before it does he asks them what their advice would be given the situation. What plan would they enact and how would they go about countering the threat?
You responded with a number of general thoughts and point out a number of key factors to consider. You considered what the Tieflings next move might be and how to counter it and if anyone was even powerful enough to stop him….or his sword….or whoever is really in control. You discussed who the “She” might be that he mentioned with the Raven Queen and Lolth being considered as possibilities. Jack (?) suggested taking eight good men and sending a force to strike out at the enemy but you weren’t sure where to go. In the end it was agreed that it would be left to the War Council to decide but the King acknowledged that you had given him some good points to raise with them.
The king offered you rooms inside Greyhawk Keep to stay in if they prefer that to their inn rooms, you all accepted and agreed to present yourselves to Meirdun, one of the castle butlers shortly after midday. Ragnar, Jingle and Jack hit the town, drinking ale and touring the inns of the city, getting completely wasted before collapsing into their royal quarters in the keep in the small hours of the morning. Mathas spends some time studying in the library at the Mages Guild, before retiring at a decent hour. Riley spends all night in the library and only returns to his room when sleep is about to conquer him anyway.
At around 9am the next morning Jack is rudely awoken by the sound of the door to his room and half of the wall being smashed apart by a rampaging gravel golem. You all stumble wearily from your beds, with sore heads feeling like you’ve already been in a heavy combat and dispatch the creature without too much trouble. You then head back to your beds, complaining to the castle guards about your “sleep being disturbed”. The guards are not quite sure what to make of it.
Mathas studies the area outside Jacks room and finds trace signatures of arcane energy suggesting that the creature had been teleported in, much like the hell hounds had been by the Tiefling back at the Crypt of the Crimson Shield.
A couple of hours late, with slightly less-sore heads you all find Meridun checking in on you, offering you facilities to bath and eat, get a drink, shave, banquet worth clothes and anything else you might need. You accept your own preferences of each and are soon gathered together ready for your heroes feast.
On waking up from your “big night out on the town”, Jack discovered that even though he took 20 gold out with him and spent loads on ale and spirits, he appears to have woken up with a money pouch containing over 200 gold pieces in it. He’s not sure where this money came from…everyones memory is a little hazy for the second half of the nights activities, but he is pretty sure that some gambling was involved.
Also Ragnar and Jingle don’t appear to have spent much money either, having pretty much the same money that you went out with (a free night on the tiles). Presumably Jack was buying for everyone.