Chapter 03 - Imperial City

Cut Scene

The elders, the Guardians of White Haven, are preparing for a mission. They intend on ensure the Great Line is safe and then they are going to prepare to go into Argonia to assassinate Jennesta. They have done it once - fought the Witch Queen - twenty-five years ago. They will do it again.

Meanwhile, somewhere deep in the northern forests of Cyrodiil, a group of orcs guard a small camp while masked men are working fevorously under the cover of night. A tall, thin human of dark complexion, deep brown eyes, raven black hair and neatly-cut goatee seems to be in charge, barking orders while the rest use oddly-shaped tools and work on a large humanoid body made out of iron and steel. Slowly, piece by piece, the construct is disassembled and each part is carefully placed in a wooden crate. The tall man stops for a moment, and performs a set of rituals. He stop, satisfied with his work, and removes a glowing crystal from the final piece before everything is closed up. On the side, well guarded by wards and steel, rests another crate made out of solid lead. There is a tension in the camp, but soon all is finished, the are wagons loaded, and they head out west, convering their tracks.

Scene 1 - The Road to Imperial City

The band has been riding hard for a day and stops by the campfire to discuss what's happened and what needs to get done. Fizbin is becoming increasingly suspicious of his teacher and master, Varlin. Alisaar shows them the Scrolls of the Ancestors that his mother game him. Fizbin notices that the scroll has NO natural aura and is truly otherworldly. Alisaar mentions that he doesn't know what place the image depicts, but that he senses its importance to his people.

Arthus mentions to Alisaar: "If your people get slower and weaker in the dead of winter and your people are twice as strong in the hottest summer, what would you be like with 3 suns?"

Alisaar replies back "The way I am meant to be."

The group goes quiet and Alec looks at Alisaar with understanding and a longing to go home (whatever home may be). Everyone talks around the fire for a while. Soon Arthus and Alec break off and have a private chat:

Arthus Story

Arthus tells a story of his 'growing up' after the friends went separate ways. He tells how he went to Cheydinhal poor and soon enough became destitute. He overheard some "tomb robbers" talking about a big score and followed them out of desperation. They came to a cave and after a few moments Arthus heard the sound of commotion and went to check it out. A few minutes later he realized that they had an accident and he rescued them. They finished the job (with Arthus' help) and gave him a healthy cut. He has "found" work ever since. (He ends the story here) However, he looks at Alec and says I'll tell you the rest of the tale later.

Arthus feels uncomfortable telling his tale in front of the rest of his friends. William has been giving him guff about being part of a theft, but Alec understands that he did what needed to be done. This sets the tone that William and Alec have running "friendly" disagreement about the way things are. It also comes to light Alec is Chaotic Neutral - except where the friends are concerned.

Alec’s Story

Alec explains that he went through a hard time after the band went their separate ways. His people go through a "molt" as reach adulthood. During the molt if untreated with certain herbs tieflings can go feral. Alec, without saying so, indicates that he too became feral for almost 3 months. He was living like an animal until he was hunted down by one of his own (another tiefling). This person caged him and fed him a special Root that would get him through this time. When completed this stranger trained Alec in the ways of stealth and how to be a woodsman (ranger).This person was another tiefling. He also mentioned legends of the "underdark" and bestow upon him armor that seems to be of "drowish" origins.

Fizbin's Hallucination

While on watch Fizbin sat staring in the fire and as his eyes blurred, he saw an odd thing. The fire swirled and a large ember popped out. After a few seconds the ember had begun to shake violently and then suddenly fiery legs and arms with a small black mouth appeared. It danced about as if in a ballet and seemed to yell to the heavens. And then in reply another ember popped out transformed, this one was twice as large as the first and laughed at it. Then, the small ember picked up a twig and ran the large ember through and devoured it and grew to twice it's original size. Then a breeze came and it all turned to ash and blew away.

Fizbin stirred in his sleep. He heard the winds whisper "Power must be taken" and awoke.

Scene 2 - The Imperial City

Description: The city is huge and goes on for miles (25X20). In the center is a spire that is easily 100 meters tall. It is star shaped with 5 points. The spire grows as it goes up and is capped with a dome (it is the Tower of Gates). Around the tower are four gigantic dragon statues made of white marble. Legends refer to these as "The Sisters Four", and say that these are meant to awaken at the Draconian King's request to protect Tamriel.

The band soon finds itself in line to enter the kingdom; they come in behind a large caravan of animals and people. There are many flyers nailed to a wooden wagon before them as they stand in line. They read: "Juria's Magnificent Show", "Gladiators & Beasts" and "3 nights at the arena". There is also a beautiful large bird in a cage. It is a "Sun Roc" (A large intelligent falcon like bird). Fizbin questioned the owner about the bird, only to find out that it is meant for the King, and that it is being sent to the arboretum at the top of the Tower of Gates.

Soon enough they reach the gates. Having presented their Notes of Citizenship to the guards, one of whom was clearly a Kingsman, they were allowed inside the city. Overwhelmed by the size, sounds, smell, and business of a city, much less the Capital itself, the group decides to explore for a bit. They come upon a busy marketplace, where everything and anything can be bought… for the right price. Yet as busy and chaotic as the place seems, it is clearly organized into categories and at all times watched by the ever-vigilant Kingsmen.

The group splits up and each pursue their own interest. Arthus and Fizbin end up in Abe's Scripts and Tomes, a store for the learned. There Arthus notices a book protected by a glass cover that clearly radiates magic. The title reads "The footsteps of Gods: Tokens". He spends some time looking through the bookstore but eventually leaves emptyhanded.

In the meantime Fizbin meets Abe himself and they spend some time talking. Fizbin learns of a yearly eclipse that is known as a harbinger of war. It occurs every 25 years briefly but ever 2500 years it lasts for a full day. On that day, the stories tell, a bright white light erupts towards the sky from somewhere in the High Rock region. Discussing the subject more he learns that this year is special in that the 2500-year mark is less than a year away (359 days to be exact). This is a very significant development, and all the mages are busy working on all kinds of experiments trying to take advantage of this celestial event.

Fizbin, having learned all that he could, buys an astronomer's pendulum meant for telling how close they are to the eclipse.

Soon the group reunites and seeks out a place to stay for the night. They locate a tavern near the south gate called The White Nest. They find it quite expensive - a simple place with rooms and good livery for the horses costs them a week's salary - but they have little choice.

Scene 3 - Everybody Sneaks Around

Not knowing much about the city, the group rely on Arthus and his connections. He leads them to another part of town near the Elven District, to a bar known as the The Towering Oak Bar. The name is very indicative of the place, for the whole bar is built into a giant, ancient oak. It's front door is built in-between the tree's roots with wooden stairs wrapping around the massive trunk to the main tavern high above the ground.

Inside the bar Arthus meets an middle-aged halfling named Talas. Talas, it turns out, is one of the men Arthus saved in Cheydinhal many years ago. It becomes apparent that Arthus specifically went to this bar because he knew Talas would be here. While they have a pleasant conversation Talas him to Kal, a very old elf who occasionally refers to himself as a "fictional character". Kal explains to Arthus that The Draconian king was poisoned and that he has been sleeping in a coma with no cure for almost five years. He also indicates that the poisoning was done by spies from Hammerfell, a large, rugged country to the west of Cyrodiil.

Arthus makes his case to Kal and explains he needs to get to the top of the spire. Kal says he can do it but it will get messy and that imperial blood would get shed. They talk for a while and Arthus tells Kal that they will see if they can find a better way, but does not reject Kal's idea for the moment.

In the meantime Fizbin goes to see an old colleague Salir, a student of wizardry Fizbin had met many years ago at Varlin's, his master's, tower. Though they aren't friends, they are colleagues, and Fizbin knows he might know a thing or two about the Tower of Gates, given that Salir's master studies there. Though the meeting is cool, the two apprentices talk and exchange a few ideas for a bit. Fizbin, not seeing any other way, makes a heartfelt plea for help and explains that "his master has kept things from him" and that he wants/needs to get into the Tower of Gates. Salir is initially taken aback, but eventually he tells Fizbin a story about a secret tomb in the Elven District that is rumored to have a passage into the catacombs underneath the tower. Fizbin thanks Salir and they say goodbyes.

Fizbin's Hallucination.

As Fizbin walks back towards the Whie Nest, he sees a beggar (there should be none; the Imperial City simply doesn't have such), and the begger asks for some coins. Fizbin, being in a particularly good mood about his conversation with Salir, gives the beggar a piece of silver. The Beggar then asks "This isn't enough for I need two. Can I have one more the boatman?" Fizbin holds up a torch to get a better picture of the beggar. When he does so the figure disappears. However, upon lowering the torch, the beggar appears again and Fizbin, both amused and puzzled, gives it another coin. The beggar thanks him and says "I am done how I have to go home." Fizbin says "We all have to get home someday" and the the beggar remarks "no no no no no, YOU can stay forever, YOU can have the power. YOU could be great…". It then disappears.

Eventually the group meets up at the White Nest. There they discuss the two options of getting into the Tower of Gates. One way is to meet Kal at midnight and use "Kal's way" to get them to the top of the tower, whatever that might mean. The other way is to sneak in the way Salir spoke off. After a short debate and mild concern for "Kal's way", they decide to try Salir's way first, as that seems to be a safer way. Thus they will sneak in.

In all of that, none of the characters even consider any other options. For one, they know that asking for an audience with the Draconian King is a mute point. For another, forcing their way in past a college of wizards and then through the Kingsmen, if they're still around, seems an even less alluring approach. So, reserved to the underhanded methods, they choose to test their luck in the city's catacombs.

The band each goes to their room and Arthus decides to walk about the city and into the elven gardens district. As he walks, footsteps follow and hands grab him and put a scack over his head. A short time later, the sack is taken off and he finds himself in a large, ornamental room, sitting a long, carved table, across from none other than David Talbot, Grandmanster of the The Keepers.

Cut Scene

Fizbin's parents are in the house packing all of their things. His mother is feeling guilty and asks the father "What have we done?" and the father says "what we must do". They then pack up one last artifact and the scene closes.


Chapter 02 - Calm Before the Storm

Back to Books

Chapter 04 - Above and Below


last edited by SockPuppetSockPuppet

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