Arc:What You Leave Behind

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Time to take down Kahran!


It has been many years since the Dark Immortals Khasad and Elazul ravaged the realm of Lithrydel with their mighty armies and heroes such as Donovan Keane, Lionel O’Connor, Kalid, Cailyn Keane, and Demont Roussai drove them back, sealing and destroying them forevermore. Yet even in their defeat there were signs that their forces were never truly extinguished. Roughly two years after war’s end, a cult of former soldiers in Elazul’s ranks lit fire to the country of Catal from shore to shore, bringing about a cataclysm that exterminated the vast majority of the Catalian people and left the land to rot.

Time passed. Heroes came and went. With the destruction of his homeland and grief over the many lives he failed to save during Lithrydel’s Dark Immortal War -- most especially that of his late wife, Alexia Isis -- Lionel came back haunted. He had visions of the dead, and he intended to die alongside them. A burgeoning network of newfound friends, including heroes and heroines of a newer age, brought him back from the brink.

Tragedy struck some months later when a group of raw recruits under Lionel’s tutelage were mercilessly slaughtered. A full investigation was launched, but the culprits were never found. Lionel began to fear that a remnant of the Dark Immortals’ power still reigned and it planned to reignite the war for Lithrydel. Matters were made worse when event after event after unresolved event seemed to link in some way to unidentified puppeteers pulling the strings across the realm in a bid to weaken its people before full-scale assault.

Though it took two years after his return for the enemy to make themselves known, Lionel and his close companions bore witness to the sum of all their fears when the ruthless Kahran, a former lieutenant in the Dark Immortals’ army and the man responsible for the fall of Catal, revealed himself at last, starting a new war that would shake the world.

Chapter One: The Shape of Things to Come

After the disaster at sea, Lionel felt despair that the cycle of death and malice was upon him once again. His friends helped him to recover from this sad state, and soon a new resistance -- to rival the old one in courage and scope -- was founded. Harrowing battles were fought in Chartsend and Larket. Some days brought victory. Some nights brought defeat. The best the resistance could do was to hold the line against Kahran as he spread his abominations, commanded by vile generals, across the realm.

Kahran himself was even busier. He forged alliances with the naga, with rogue sorcerers, and even with the avians, expanding his territory and gaining foothold after foothold in contentious combat zones.

There were those who questioned if resistance was futile. By snatching pyrrhic victories from the jaws of total annihilation, Kahran’s enemies aimed to prove otherwise.

Chapter Two: Worthy of Survival

The war continued. Lionel and his allies were made aware of a renegade clan of frost giants called Ouroboros who served Kahran from the safety of a remote forest tundra at the edge of the realm. After launching an expedition to scout the area, the resistance went on to stage a preemptive strike against these foes, defeating them and preparing to offer terms of peace. However, the arrival of a mysterious woman named Mulgrew -- who had apparently masqueraded as one of Ouroboros’ leaders -- marked the deaths of every member of the clan. She then teased the heroes, offering cryptic clues of what was to come and leaving behind an emerald skull tied to an unrelated crisis.

Meanwhile, Lionel’s faithful ally, an elf named Esche, began to exhibit strange sorrowful behavior patterns and secretly conversed with Mulgrew and her ilk in defiance of their true aims. Although the resistance was ignorant to it, Esche seemed to know far more about a great many mysteries than he let on.

Schezerade soon fell to Kahran through the schemes of a man called Orra, granting the enemy an aerial base of operations from which to look down upon Lithrydel with greedy and unrelenting eyes. Elsewhere, operations were conducted throughout the Southern Sage and parts of Venturil, where deadly battles raged.

By communing with Valrae Baines, ‘the Red Witch’, Lionel began to learn the potential purpose of Mulgrew’s strange gift. The emerald skull resonated with something, somewhere, out in the vastness of the Nameless Desert where Khasad and Elazul once slumbered. It was a lead, albeit a vague and possibly damning one. But every opportunity for an edge in this war had to be seized for all it was worth.

Before planning a trip to explore the full extent of the Nameless Desert, however, the resistance embarked on a possibly one-way trip into the perilous Shadow Plane in a bid to learn the location of Kahran’s castle. The villain’s key to power had been in his inexplicable ability to launch attacks seemingly out of thin air anywhere in Lithrydel through his apparent mastery of Shadow Plane portals, and by finding his command center perhaps they could ascertain the source of this ability. The mission was fraught, and mysteries deepened. The castle was never found, but one of the primary sources of Kahran’s power was found instead. The team fought valiantly across three fronts, successfully severing the link and dealing Kahran a major defeat in the process. Kahran, enraged, poisoned Lionel and left him to die. Were it not for the considerable efforts of his sister Khitti and his lover Valrae, the Hero of Hellfire would have gotten the death he once craved but now fought so desperately to prevent.

  1. Here Comes The Rain Again
  2. Threading the Needle
  3. Helping Those in Need
  4. Berserker's Encounter with a Healer
  5. Cenril Needs All The Help It Can Get
  6. A Voice in the Wilderness
  7. Dance with the Devil
  8. The Execution of Valrae Baines
  9. Good Tidings Amidst Fatalistic Prospects
  10. This Hollow Bastion
  11. Ouroboros
  12. Woes Exponential
  13. The Uyeer in Review
  14. Indiscriminate
  15. Master Of Puppets
  16. The Wars to Come
  17. Tea in Winter
  18. A Ghost of a Chance
  19. The Gods and Their Jokes
  20. Embers
  21. Point of No Return
  22. Worthy of Survival
  23. A Hawkward Chat About Raevyn
  24. Mist and Shadow
  25. Never Even Met
  26. Can't Fight This Feeling Anymore
  27. Doubt Truth To Be A Liar
  28. A Wild Paladin Appeared!
  29. Time and Again
  30. Are You There, Cyris? It's Me, Khitti
  31. Queen Takes Queen
  32. Good Guys Talking
  33. Yet You See Me
  34. And It Must Follow
  35. Hope
  36. Dulcinea
  37. Hard Truths Cut Both Ways
  38. Faith and Doubt
  39. What Pride Had Wrought
  40. Came Tame and Tremulous
  41. Into the Forest I Go
  42. We'll Always Have Vailkrin
  43. Freedom Is The Power To Choose Our Own Chains
  44. Caves, Healing, Secrets
  45. Homeless & Hopeless
  46. The Red Wolf and The Butcher's Blade
  47. Someone to Watch Over Me
  48. The Gathering Flame
  49. The Old Familiar Faces
  50. Shadows and Symbols
  51. Fireside Chats (and Curses)
  52. Belles and Balls
  53. Disciplined Breakdown
  54. Fight Like A Girl
  55. The Winds of Change
  56. A Distant Star
  57. A Vigil Grey and Haunted
  58. The Stars Are Fire
  59. The Weight Upon Waking Thoughts
  60. Threads
  61. Following Up
  62. There But For The Grace Of Gods
  63. Hope's Congregation

Chapter Three: He That Believeth In Me

Months passed since the resistance’s surprise victory in the Shadow Plane. Kahran seemed to vanish, his armies across Lithrydel slowing their march and fading. Among those who had so freshly doubted the value of resistance against such odds, now there were some who questioned instead whether or not Kahran would ever truly recover. Lionel and his allies knew the harsh truth: their nemesis was merely licking his wounds, retreating into his old tricks of ambush and espionage and behind-the-scenes scheming until he gained the advantage all over again.

Some who had fought bravely in prior battles departed the lands, Lithrydel’s fragile peace owing substantially to their actions. Some became entangled in other conflicts, which -- as the wheel of time had proven once before -- could very well have been related to the ongoing crisis with Kahran.

Plans to search the Nameless Desert were put on hold. Whatever awaited the resistance out upon those scorching dunes, the investigation was on hiatus until Lionel returned from a fruitless search to find a friend. For Esche, he who knew much and shared none, had conveniently disappeared immediately following Kahran’s loss in the Shadow Plane.

Kahran was still active and waiting to lunge. Esche was elsewhere and unable to be found. Mulgrew remained an enigma. The guiding light of the emerald skull still glowed brightly in anticipation of what was to come. And it was high time the resistance reunited.

Pivotal NPCs

  • Esche was an elf in Lionel's employ for over two years. He attached himself to the expedition to save mages from the dragon Raiez and slowly became a fixture of service at Lionel's side, participating in the Sauriangate and Township Troopers arcs along the way. He claimed to be a simple man of decent taste, dutifully taking to tasks of cooking, cleaning, and commanding as an attache to both Frostmaw and the Warrior's Guild. While he enjoyed scholarly pursuits and would gladly speak with others about their own problems whether they wish him to or not, Esche rarely alluded to his own past. Not even Lionel knows much of the man Esche was before coming to Lithrydel. In recent months, Esche has disappeared. Lionel fears the worst, but the elf's true motives may prove far more damning than death.
  • Kahran is the name of the man who leads the attacks throughout Lithrydel. His army is now grand, diverse, and possessing of a certain magical power. Who he is, where he came from, what he seeks to accomplish -- these are questions which now have answers. On election night in Cenril, Kahran reveals himself melodramatically, sending his forces to destroy a ship and conquer the city. When witches like Valrae work together to send him back from whence he came, he regards the obstruction as little more than a momentary pause, filling the survivors' minds with visions of an apocalyptic future and driving Lionel half-mad. Kahran has since launched multiple wide-scale attacks throughout Lithrydel and holds forward camps deep within the wildernesses. He has conquered Schezerade and allied with Alithrya, adding avians and naga to his expansive arsenal. His headquarters is believed to be stationed within the Shadow Plane, a dimension difficult to traverse and wrought with terrible abomination. Recent events have greatly weakened his dominion over the Shadow Plane's portals, forcing Kahran to suffer his first real blow in the war.
  • Mulgrew is a grand shaman allegedly belonging to a fiercely religious tribe of Frost Giants known as the Ouroboros. First appearing at Lionel's beckoning in the RP entitled This Hollow World, she made overtures toward healing Rorin of his curse but instead told prophecy and departed. She has a mysterious connection to Esche and may know far more than she lets on about a great many things. Recently, she appeared before the allies during their battle against the Ouroboros, wiping out the giants one and all. Her true identity remains unknown, but she spouted prophecy to the group and left behind a certain magical skull...
  • Uma is a witch and the widow of Fitz Johnson, Cenril's mayor-elect who was assassinated during the massacre aboard the Turnt. Stepping out of her late husband's shadow, she has proven herself politically capable and a cunning strategist. She serves as 'interim' mayor while Cenril recovers from the devastation Kahran had wrought, but her abilities are compelling many among the citizenry to recognize her as their true leader. While her duties keep her primarily based in Cenril, she's recently fought alongside Lionel and his many allies to save Chartsend from one of Kahran's nefarious legions. She fears Cenril's magical barrier will soon fall without the aid of a witch from beyond this mortal coil.