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Conclave News and Notes Turn 10
Summer Year 3 - 42 months to Armageddon.


Mages across the continent report a general increase in health after going on a diet that excludes the common herb responsible for upsetting their magical energies. Non-mages continue to enjoy the herb with no ill-effects.

Activity in south Bernea is drawing attention. The Taskmaster, besides establishing an army training camp outside the city walls and recruiting soldiers to fill it, has let it been known that he fully supports the claim of the 'true' emperor of Cleon. This announcement must surely see the end of the alliance between Meridar and the Brown Friars, who are fully prepared to defend the Emperor Jad Arden against any rivals.

The 'real' emperor of Cleon - if there is such a person - has yet to put in an appearance. Yet Rakim the Red Ravager has been actively recruiting for a new Imperial Guard in Sher and weapons and armour production has increased in the town. Mayor Rupar has refused to say whether or not he will support a bid to seize the throne of Cleon.

Rupar is pleased to announce his engagement to Rachil, owner of Sher's Magic Shop and sister to renowned adventurer, Brindan. The couple have yet to set a date for the wedding. The Magic Shop, after a short period of stocktaking, is now open again for business.

As part of the new treaty that binds Sher, Meridar and Squill, the BTC have stationed a unit in Sher. The unit consists of just one hundred men, but Master Gromicron has made it clear that any attack upon it will be seen as a declaration of war upon the whole of the BTC and the northern defence force who will respond with all the resources at their disposal.

The BTC fleet has already been busy stopping and impounding ships belonging to the Brown Friars. BTC leaders say they suspect the Taskmaster of harbouring the Jade Throne of Cleon, and besides most of the ships are carrying illegal cargoes of slaves. The Brown Friars have temporarily suspended all shipping but are set to resume shortly. In an announcement mirroring Gromicron's own words, Xanthe has stated that any attack upon any Brown Friar vessel will be taken as a declaration of war upon the whole fleet, and the whole fleet stands ready to respond with full and deadly force.

The rift has widened between the Cleon palace and the Brown Friars. Lady Arden, the Emperor's mother, maintains that Xanthe was behind the assassination attempt some months ago and that she has recovered the Jade throne and is hiding it in Meridar until she can kill Jad Arden and take power for herself. Xanthe has challenged her to produce evidence for her claims or to apologise and accuses the palace of working in league with the BTC to destroy the Brown Friars movement. The Emperor's attempts to make peace between the two factions have so far failed.

Ambar. The mayoress's adviser, Lady Terentia, escaped a fire in her home that began when she accidentally knocked a candle over. She is unhurt and has moved into the mayoress's residence while her own home is being rebuilt. On the other side of the city the fabulous glass tower of AiEsha Dalgroth is finally complete. It is especially spectacular at sunrise and sunset when the sun's rays turn the whole structure blood red.

Yet another expedition is underway, this time to explore the frozen wastelands of north Bernea. Captain Justin Travallion is in charge of the mission and promises to return soon with tales of great daring and adventure. We wish him luck.

The following message has been seen pinned to many tavern notice boards:

I was delighted to discover an answer to the hypothetical question of who else could have built a tunnel to the Emperor's throne room. I hope that the actions of the good dwarf Potus has given my self-satisfied critics the opportunity to choke as they recited his deeds to the world. Perhaps is they know now "a man who can construct a tunnel from the outskirts of Cleon into the throne room". Perhaps they should also know that I have constructed many items that assist in the erection of such tunnels. And that such items have been given generously to those involved in the repair of Herrick's Watch and the Northern watch towers. Many explanations exist that do not involve insulting the honour of one who has done a great deal to prevent scribes of all shades being overrun by barbarians and flesh-eating zombies.

Still I have not been the recipient of a richly deserved and unreserved reputation for magnaminity for nothing. Town criers all over the land need not fear me but rather can buy me a drink by way of apology. Let us say no more of this incident.

As ever I remain remarkably, Rakim the Raucous Red Ravager

Jad Arden of Cleon has not responded to this proclamation, but tavern owners in several cities have offered Rakim free drinks should he care to visit. Their sudden generosity may have been prompted by the fact that Rakim has, so he says, become the first man ever to explore the Burnt Lands are return alive. Flying over the Lands on a slab of magically propelled rock, he talks of strange storms, lightning that leads to another world and fish raining from the sky. Hmm... Maybe he's had a few of those free drinks already.

Also investigating the Burnt Lands is the Hooded Man who has put together a group of seven mages to investigate ways of healing the Lands, or at least of stopping their spread. He goes with the blessing of the Elven Council and Elven Conclave and, it is understood, with the blessing of the Empress Cha'Rissa of Kalevi herself. Given that mages probably created the Burnt Lands in the first place, it's only fair that they should now clear up the mess. We only hope that they don't make matters worse.

The League of Free Merchants continues to grow, with offices opening across Bernea and Gershan. It's a good opportunity for non-affiliated merchants to band together to share information and contacts and the range of benefits offered by the League is very attractive so any traders tired of the constant fighting between the BTC and the Brown Friars should take a look at what's on offer.

More huge dogs have been spotted prowling the Larkwood. Travellers are advised to avoid the area, or at least to take some large pieces of meat with them to feed to the animals.


Crazy Matti is dead, and that's official.

On a dark night, a bizarre column of creatures left Lorn, heading for the ranks of the besieging army. At the forefront was the mad prophetess, carried aloft on a wooden platform lit by torches made from severed heads dipped in pitch. She was dressed in the flayed skin of the commander who led the failed attack on Lorn not long ago. Ghouls attended her. Madness was upon her and she called down curses on those who surrounded the city of Lorn, claiming victory in the name of someone called the Tongmeister.

The ranks of the defending army stood ready to intercept their grisly foe, yet before the ghoul army had crossed half the distance, a pack of wild animals rushed upon the front of their column. Matti fell to the ground, staggering up only to be set upon by wild dogs and an eagle that screamed in rage as it tore at her with bloodied talons. In the end, even her own ghouls turned upon her, tearing the strewn pieces of her body into even smaller pieces before rushing upon the waiting army.

The fight was short and fierce. Many zombies dropped lifeless before reaching their enemies, others were cut down by the valiant ranks of soldiers or torn apart by animals. At the climax of the battle, a light shone on the walls of Lorn and the body of Zerg, Matti's evil companion, appeared, dangling on the end of a rope. The action of faithful Solists within the city, maybe? No one knows.

The next day the animals had vanished and all was quiet. The body of Zerg was cut down and burned outside the city walls. On the advise of mages, army commanders are burning or decapitating all bodies to prevent them being raised again as zombies.

The War Council are holding back from ordering an all-out assault on Lorn. Their forces are now surrounding the city. Meanwhile, in Ottah, Potus the Pompous and the mages who escaped Lorn last month have joined the war effort. Any other mages who wish to co-ordinate in an assault against Lorn should report to Potus.

Other matters. Once again, Aodhagen of Taos has had to step in to squash rumours that there are dragons in the Forbidden Mountains.

'It's true,' one farmer said. 'I saw it with my own eyes and it stole my sheep.'

Aodhagen responded by saying that, if there were any sheep-stealers about, Taos would deal with them. But there are definitely, absolutely, beyond a shadow of a doubt, no dragons.

There have, however, been a number of landslides in the mountains, some of them quite serious. On at least two occasions, explosions were heard and clouds of dust were seen, rising up like mushroom-shaped clouds. The finger of blame points at Tormir Sureforge, who was seen staggering into Taos, burned and blackened and grinning broadly. Aodhagen has taken no action against him, nor does he intend to do so. Add to this the large bag of gold that found its way from the city coffers into Tormir's hands and you begin to wonder how the mage has managed to gain so much influence over the city ruler in such a short space of time.

There's more to worry about in the area of Bale Beacon. Reliable reports have it that an eruption of the volcano is imminent. Thankfully, there are few people living in the area. The few that do live there have been offered homes in Tredl until the crisis is over.

A reward is being offered for information on the whereabouts of a pair of children who vanished some weeks ago. Shasha and Devin Whitebrook, brother and sister, are aged seven and four respectively. Human, with blonde hair, they were last seen in the Masud marketplace. Their parents have offered 30 gold crowns for their return.

Travellers in the Silver Desert have reported seeing strange, flickering lights in the sky far to the south. 'Far brighter than any lightning,' they say.

Vormil Stortanis and his party of explorers have now been missing in the Silver Desert for six months. The last news from them was that they'd discovered the location of a fourth lost city, supposedly full of treasure. Their supplies must surely have run out by now so we fear the worst. With the current troubles in south Gershan, King Akenhaten of Masud, who funded the expedition, has no plans to send a search party after them.

On a happier note, several people have sighted the mage Latcho Drom who vanished in the Silver Desert almost a year ago. He refuses to say where he has been. It is understood that the War Council wish to talk with him as soon as possible.

Turn 10 subsidiary news

GROSS mages reappeared briefly in Gershan and Bernean to make an appeal for human blood. After hearing that it was needed for researching anti-demon wards, some people even donated a pint or two. No further donations are needed.

The mage, Latcho Drom has returned to the River Cities, spending several weeks looking through the Gershan church libraries in Shu. The War Council and Armaggedon Council have repeated their request for him to report to them as soon as possible.

In north Bernea, attempts to set up a barbarian elf homeland are progressing. The elf leader, Carlos, is in charge of establishing a patrol system, combining mounted soldiers and mages, to defend the new settlements against attack.

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