Email - Concluding the Investigation

Aidan stood silent for just a moment, confused at this strange old man she had just found buried in the arcane library of Sayre. He didn’t seem to register her existence, or perhaps expected her to ignore him as everyone else did. She stepped forward, and gently said, “Excuse me. I don’t suppose you could offer me any assistance? This library seems to be rather…strangely laid out.”

He looked up quickly, as if he had forgotten she was even there, and squinted at her. “Oh! You are just standing there aren’t you. Well, then!” The old tiefling stood up, muttering “Glad I’m not having visions again this month. Maybe eating daily really is the right idea…” After a brief stretch, he looks at her closely and introduces himself as, “Eodera of the Ancient Order of Ioun’s Quill…but the students here just call me Quill…and you will too! It was Aidan, correct?” She’s a bit surprised this flighty-brained tiefling remembered, and nods. “I have to assume you’re a fellow scholar here for the library. So,” he says with feigned nonchalance, becoming defensive, narrowing his eyes slightly (Insight and Perception!), “why have you come to the city?”

Aidan Diplomatically explains that she is here to research why her companions have fallen into such deep comas.

Quill looks at her with surprise, his suspicion fallen away, and asks hesitantly, “So, then…you’re…not part of the attack on the city?”

“Attack?” She asks, surprised, and then realizes with an agile Insight check, that he has concluded that the city’s predicament is an isolated incident. She explains that there has been no attack, and the plight of the mages is widespread.

Quill visibly relaxes. “Then you are a scholar! And not a mage yourself. How fortuitous. I never though my lack of magical talent would be a resource,” and mutters, “(And it’ll give ME something to lord over Marcaith and Mailee in the tavern, for once.) Well, shall we compare research?” He turns back to his table, stacked high with books, and begins outlining what he has concluded so far, which is apparently his definition of “comparing”.

Through his hurried, excited explaining, filled with much flipping through books while muttering “where was that page”, Aidan notices a few key details. Even though he is attempting to show the evidence that led him to believe the events were an attack on Sayre, Aidan’s skillful History check leads her to a more well-developed conclusion. Finally managing to slip herself into the conversation (a skill she acquired from similarly anxious ramblings of her mentor, Douven Stahl), she points out the lay lines are the source of power that went haywire and sent the mountain under Sayre skyward. But, if the arcane lay lines are at the heart of the issue, why have divine casters also been afflicted? With a respectful manner, mindful that Quill is an elder, learned scholar and deserving of respect, Aidan lays out what she remembered from history, getting excited all the while, and encouraging academic discussion and debate from him: the lay lines were created by the elemental Primordials, but when the gods wrested control of the material plane from their chaotic grasp in the Dawn War, the god who would become Ioun took control of the lay lines. As Quill nods in agreement, Aidan concludes that the only logical explanation so far is that the gods themselves are troubled, and the arcane maladies are simply ripples of whatever has affected them. The old tiefling fixates upon this theory, and begins adding in his own conclusions and grabbing at various books to quote from them.

It is around this time that Thia and Silbira stumble upon the two scholars in the library. After introductions, during which Quill resumes ignoring them in favor of a much more interesting book, Thia shares her findings around town and urges Silbira to tell her what she thinks. In a quiet voice, she recounts the flux and flow of the pink energy from the disrupted lay lines, and how it was siphoned into a planar portal that formed spontaneously above the confluence of the lines, and then shot back out to crack the earth and lift the mountain. The two adventurers compare notes (Aidan’s conclusion giving Thia much trepidation about the status of the gods, even though the elf has drifted away from Sehanine as of late) and begin to formulate plans for studying the planar goings-on and perhaps reaching whatever plan shot back out the energy.

At the point in this conversation involving planar portals—a conversation which he didn’t even seem to be paying any attention—Quill comments offhandedly that Silbira is an accomplished ritualist and has already mastered the planar portal ritual, and then resumes his reading uninterrupted. The young, shy half-elf confirms softly that she has had plenty of practice, and would be able to help determine what plane the portal led to and would likely even be able to reactivate the doorway.

Aidan and Thia look at each other and nod. They don’t know what lies on the other side of the portal, and they surely would enjoy the company and support of their now-comatose companions, but they are prepared to travel where they need to and to do what it takes to restore this world to its rightful state. They leave the library for the day, promising to send someone from the inn with food for Quill (who ignores them as they leave), and head to the tavern. The next day should hold much excitement for them, as they will ride their griffons to the air above the archmage’s tower, and hope for the best as Silbira determines what far-flung planar destination to send them to!

Email - Concluding the Investigation

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