"I tell you someone's in trouble!"

Ulf Unmelten crashed through the undergrowth, and immediately sank into the sucking mud. Cold marsh-water flooded his boots. He looked back and saw that Sasha had not moved from the path. She shook her head, and made no move to follow him. From somewhere nearby, there was more splashing and a faint cry for help.

"There did you hear that? Come help me!"

"I don't trust this," Sasha replied. She hadn't stopped scanning the wild undergrowth around them, as if expecting a band of Jotun to erupt out of the reeds at any moment.

"What's not to trust?" Ulf gabbed at the slim trunk of a beggarwood tree and pulled himself out of the mud. On firmer ground, he started to pick his way towards the sounds of splashing.

"Monsters," called Sasha after him. "Monsters, and maybe orcs."

"This is Kallavesa, not Karov! We don't have monsters here!" scoffed Ulf. "We've got someone who needs our help, and every moment we waste brings them one moment closer to drowning! Come on! What would Inga Tarn do?"

He heard Sasha swearing, and then the sound of her following after him. It never failed; his Varushkan friend wanted more than anything else to live up to the example of the heroic exemplar of Courage. His smile faltered on his face though, as he burst through a stand of tall rushes and found himself staring at a large pool of dark, scummy water, hidden from the road by the stunted beggarwood trees. An empty pool, with no sign of anyone drowning. Was he too late?

Before you could do more than open his mouth to shout something, half turning back toward Sasha, something snapped closed around his lower leg, cleaving through the heavy leather of his boots and his greaves. He yelled, went down into the mud, desperately trying to draw his sword. Before you could get it more than a few inches out of its sheathe, something heavy landed on his chest driving all the wind out of him. It was nothing human, nor an orc. An emaciated horror with yellow eyes the size of dinner plates, and a frog-wide mouth of jagged fangs, loomed over him, cackling. He tried to struggle free, but despite it's stick-thin limbs it was simply too strong for him. It raised a hand that seemed to be mostly razor-sharp claw, and Ulf could hear the Labyrinth calling...

... as a massive two-handed hammer walloped into the side of the creature's head, sending it flying. Sasha roared her battle cry "FOR INGA TARN!" and stepped over Ulf's prone form. His attacker was briefly stunned, but scampered away through the reeds, keening. They heard it splash into the water and the wailing stopped.

"No monsters, in Kallavesa then?" said Sasha.

"One monster then," said Ulf. He tried to stand but his torn leg wouldn't support his weight. All around them the keening started again.

"Just one monster is it?" said Sasha grimly. Ulf didn't answer, just pulled his sword, half-sitting, half-kneeling. More splashing, and the sound of things moving through the reefs. At least four or five different voices all calling out in echo of the one Sasha had battered.

"You should run, Sasha." said Ulf. "No point us both dying here, and going down under the claws of swamp monsters is a good death. Just don't tell them how stupid I was, to go running off into the marshes, alright"

"Idiot," said Sasha, without rancour. "What would Inga Tarn do?"

Before he could answer his friend, the beasts were on them, and there was no time to think about anything except survival.
Dangerous boggarts have been found nesting across the marshes of Kallavesa, Holberg, and Ossium.
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  • Hallow of the Green World has been invoked in the Empire
  • You can learn about the magical effects of the Imperial enchantment in the Children in bloom wind of fortune

As Hallow of the Green World sweeps across the Empire, it temporarily empowers weak Spring regio, and encourages the eternals of the Spring realm to involve themselves in Imperial affairs. These two effects combine to cause the Spring eternals to send large numbers of their heralds to the Empire - as long as they have not been declared enemies of the Empire by the Imperial Conclave of course.

The heralds of Llofir, Siakha, and Yaw'nagrah are not able to enter the Empire without specific ritual summons, and there is no sign that such things have been forthcoming. Of the eternals the Empire knows about, this leaves only Arhallogen, Irra Harah, and Ossegrahn free to respond directly to the enchantment.

Of the three, Lord Rain has been especially enthusiastic about the magic, and dozens have emerged from regio across the Empire, apparently as a consequence of a plenipotentiary message sent by Ibiss Briarheart the Archmage of Spring during the solstice. Their antics are described in more detail in the Rain king wind of fortune. The rest of this wind of fortune deals with the consequences of prising open every Spring regio in the Imperial territories, and the responses of the other Spring eternals.

A Field Guide to Boggarts

  • Three different kinds of Spring boggart have been spotted in the Empire

Not all the creatures emerging from the Spring realm via the empowered regio are heralds. A large number of boggarts have also appeared in the Empire. Boggart is a scholarly term used to describe a kind of magical creature found in all six of the eternal realms. Unlike heralds, boggarts are often akin to vermin; cunning and perhaps even capable of speech but also driven by powerful instincts that often make them destructive or threatening to mortals around them. When the tide of Spring magic is at its height hundreds of the creatures slip into the Empire and while many retreat back toward their Spring regio when the enchantment begins to wane, some take up residence in those areas and potentially present a threat to Imperial citizens. Three particular types of nuisance have been identified

Corbs combine the aspect of human and crow to create an awkward, noisy, destructive pest. Cunning creatures, they love to root around newly sewn fields stealing seeds and damaging young shoots. They are particularly tied to the Spring resonance for ruin - and in addition to damaging farms they have the ability to unmake almost anything that comes from mortal artisanship. They can dismantle a barn or a house with distressing speed, and are even capable of shattering weapons and shields. Generally cowardly, they become more bold the more of them there are in the same place. If they have one weakness, it is that they are drawn to children - like many boggarts are - apparently seeing them as kindred spirits. Children are rarely harmed by Corbs unless they startle or anger them.

The second breed that seem to be sneaking into the Empire also like children, but for very different reasons. The Greenteeth resonate with the principle of Savagery. They are vicious, yet cowardly, killers that possess horrible shark-like fangs and nasty grasping claws. They make their homes in slow moving or stagnant water, and are loath to stray too far from their lairs. They hunt underwater and in the open air with equal facility, lurking beneath the surface and ambushing unsuspecting victims. They have a particular facility with mimicking the cries of people or animals in trouble, and by the time a would-be rescuer realises there is nobody to save, it is too late. Prey is stalked, incapacitated, and quickly devoured. Like most boggarts, they are drawn to young people and animals, but in this case it is because they find their soft, sweet meat particularly toothsome. While they don't gather in numbers, there have been some unpleasant incidents in Kallavesa and Holberg, as well as sightings of small groups of the beasts in Ossium.

The third type who have been appearing in numbers are the Grimmelkint. They are drawn to forests and woodlands, and like to feast on magical materials. If enough of them gather in one place, they can become a serious inconvenience to Imperial forest owners. Dealing with them is no simple matter. They resonate strongly with principles of fertility and sickness. Attempts to drive them off with violence have been largely unsuccessful because anyone harming a Grimmelkint directly finds themselves cursed with a malediction of illness, and when one is killed a new one quickly turns up to replace it. There is some speculation that the things might actually be unkillable; that slaying one somehow creates at least one more to replace it.

Threats of the Grimmelkint

  • The boggarts known as Grimmelkint are being drawn to Imperial forests
  • If a way is not found to deal with them, every forest in the Empire will receive a two rank penalty to its production in the coming season

The Grimmelkint have been seen in the Empire before, but never in such numbers. From Varushka to Urizen, from Segura to Sermersuaq, swarms of the little blighters are drawn to Imperial forest reserves. They are already becoming a nuisance, and if some solution to their appearance is not found then they will create enough disruption that every forest touched by Hallow of the Green World will see a two rank penalty to production after the Spring Equinox. As the last of the Spring magic ebbs away, most will depart, meaning the problem should have solved itself by the start of the Summer Solstice unless something else happens to persuade them to stay.

Oddly, some Grimmelkint have been spotted moving toward Anvil, despite the lack of nearby forest. They seem to be drawn along the trods, perhaps attracted by the Imperial regio.

Professor Beatrice of Holberg, a self-professed expert on boggart behaviour, has been studying the situation as best she can and proposes a solution. If the boggarts in Anvil can be rounded up and herded back through the portal at the rear of the Hall of Worlds, this may incite the creatures to en masse return whence they came, or at least prove to people that something can be done

The professor further speculates that it might be possible for the boggarts to be taught to coexist with the forest owners, and perhaps even enhance their production, but she has not had time for sufficient research to propose how this might be achieved.

Spring creatures are rarely punctual by nature, but the majority of the wandering Grimmelkint are on course to arrive in Anvil some time around sunset on Saturday evening by which time hopefully someone will have worked out how to deal with them.

Anyone with the forest resource may roleplay that they have had encounters with these nuisances, and may receive more information in their packs

The Other Eternals

  • Arhallogen proposes that the Navarr continue to slaughter the Jotun in the west
  • Siakha has offered a truce with Imperial magicians
The Spider King appears to approve of the Navarr, in general.

Hallow of the Green World always rouses the interest of the Spring eternals. Though half of the eternals of Spring have been declared as enemies of the Empire there are still three who have been able to take advantage of these things. Lord Rain has provided multiple opportunities to the Empire as detailed in the Rain king wind of fortune. The other eternals, however, have been much quieter in their response to the Imperial enchantment. If Irra Harah is taking advantage of the enchantment, the Prince with a Thousand Foes is doing so out of sight of Imperial citizens. That leaves Arhallogen - and by contrast with Irra Harah the Spider King is enthusiastically reaching out to their friends among the Navarr.


  • Arhallogen encourages the Navarr to kill their enemies without regard for the straightjacket of morality

The Scorpion Queen is a somewhat problematic ally, given their open patronage of the Druj orcs. Of all Imperial citizens, they are mostly drawn to the Navarr, and especially their armies. Heralds of Arhallogen are often seen accompanying the Quiet Step, emerging from Spring regio as the Navarr thorns pass by or following in their wake. Arhallogen seems especially keen to encourage the Navarr to slaughter the Jotun in the western Empire. In Autumn 381YE, the Wintermark assembly sent Aarne Coerling to urge the warriors of their nation to fight heroically and show the Jotun that they have some idea of honour. The very idea of this makes Arhallogen gnash their mandibles. Why would anyone want to let a living enemy escape to fight another day? It is incomprehensible! Especially given the fact that the Jotun orcs clearly despise the Navarr, and rarely pass up an opportunity to murder them, and despoil the fallen. Why would the Navarr tolerate such behaviour?

Arhallogen has a suggestion. If it was up to the eternal they'd just ask the generals of the Navarr to invoke the Centipede General and send heralds to fight alongside them. That would resolve the immediate problem of “too many living Jotun” but only in the short term. Rather, the Spider King suggests that the Navarr use the same weapon the Winterfolk have used – one the eternal doesn't necessarily understand. The Synod.

Following on from the recent orders of the Navarr generals, the Navarr national assembly may enact the following mandate.

You cannot betray your enemies, and there is no doubt the Jotun are the enemies of the Navarr and of the Empire. We send (named priest) with 25 liao to urge our thorns to show no mercy to the orcs of Narkyst, Kallsea, and Lasambria, as they show no mercy to us.

Synod Mandate, Navarr National Assembly

If this mandate is enacted then for the next year (until the start of the Spring Equinox 386YE), any Navarr army that fights the Jotun will inflict 10% more casualties, but contribute 20% fewer victory points for purposes of holding or taking territory. The fact they are going out of their way to kill the Jotun will be apparent to every other force in the territory whenever they fight the western orcs.

If the Navarr take advantage of this to slaughter the Jotun, it may be possible to make this benefit permanent.

If Arhallogen's suggestion is accepted, then the eternal will also share his power with them in a more direct way. Arhallogen will provide the vates with an arcane projection that will allow them to draw directly on the eternal's power to enchant a Navarr army so that they can more effectively slaughter their enemies.

Corey Wayfarer has offered an alternate mandate that would see the Navarr reject the offer of Arhallogen, instead drawing on their history fighting against the Vallorn.

We should take Pride in who we are; as Navarr we have always used every tool available to us in our fight against the Vallorn. We send {named priest} with 25 doses of liao to urge all Navarr to fight as we should; open poison, let us ambush and murder our enemies. Show Courage and Pride and remind the Jotun who we are.

Synod Mandate, Navarr National Assembly

If this mandate is enacted then the Navarr armies would, as above, increase their casualties against the western orcs. However, Arhallogen would not offer an arcane projection to the Navarr to allow them to draw directly on the eternal's power.

Nathair Autumngale has offered an alternate mandate that would see the Navarr instead attempt to deny the Jotun open conflict.

You cannot betray your enemy. We send {named priest} with 25 doses of liao to encourage the Thorns of Navarr to reject the call from Arhallogen. Skirmish, strike, withdraw and redeploy. Lure them to battlefields where steel never clashes. We denied the Jotun 'honourable' battle when they sought it, we will now deny them slaughter as they seek it. You need not butcher an enemy's soldiers to defeat them.

Synod Mandate, Navarr National Assembly

If this mandate is enacted then for the next year (until the start of the Spring Equinox 386YE) any Navarr armies that are given orders that increase casualties inflicted against the Jotun will instead default to balanced attack or solid defence as appropriate.

These mandates are in competition with each other. If more than one were raised, the one that achieved the highest margin would be the one that was enacted.

The Mother of Wrecks revels in destruction and savage bloodletting.

Mother of Wrecks

  • A Grendel follower of Siakha has delivered a message to Imperial citizens on behalf of her mistress

The Mother of Wrecks is a deadly force of unbridled destruction who revels in bloodshed and savagery. She has been an enemy of the Empire for some time now, and has sent her heralds to attack the Imperial Conclave directly in the Hall of Worlds on at least two previous occasions.

Shortly before the Spring Equinox, however, an unexpected message from the Maelstrom is delivered to the Empire by three Grendel orcs. These are not the richly dressed and cleverly spoken emissaries the Empire is familiar with; these orcs are roughly spoken, scarred, and uncouth, full of barely restrained violence. They have apparently been sent by mistress of the Temple of Tempest Jade on the other side of the Bay of Catazar to make an offer to the Imperial Conclave.

High Priestess Shivaarn, Chosen Voice of the Mother of Wrecks has received several magical missives from a Freeborn corsair, bragging about the Empire's strength. The Empress of Sharks has heard of things happening in the Empire that intrigue her – the savage killing of Jotun in the West, the cold-blooded strategies of the northern Imperials, the frenzied slaughter in the east, the bold and ruthless assaults on Chalonsio and Rachensgrab, and the thunderous storms invoked by Imperial magicians to shatter the old and make way for fresh blood. She would very much like to send her servants to observe such things for herself, especially given the “imminent shattering of the chains of peace” - presumably the treaty between the Grendel and the Empire.

On behalf of her mistress, High Priestess Shivaarn asks that the Imperial Conclave remove the barriers that prevent Siakha sending her heralds into the Empire (remove her enmity). If they do so during the Spring Equinox, the Grendel magician claims that her mistress agrees to send no more than a half-dozen of her children into the Empire to see what they are about, and to consider whether there might be hope for Imperial pirates after all. She explicitly promises that she will send none of her heralds to slaughter the weak magicians of the Imperial Conclave at their deliberations during this period.

Some consider it odd that this self-styled High Priestess offers to help the Empire improve their relationship with Siakha – who until now has favoured the Grendel exclusively. On the other hand, it may well be that Shivaarn cares more about what her “goddess” desires than she does for the edicts and concerns of the Salt Lords. These letters appear to have caught Siakha's attention and her High Priestess does not balk at delivering a message on her behalf.

It might be a trap or a trick, but experienced Spring magicians think it very unlikely. Siakha is not like Arhallogen – she revels in furious battle and open destruction, stealth and treachery are simply not part of her eternal nature. Of course, this promise of amnesty is only for two seasons, so nobody should make any assumptions about what would follow after that time. Making peace is also not a part of Siakha's nature.

Further Reading