Both cut alike
Magistrate Suuli the Jay plodded along the corridor, his tired and weary bones longing for a rest. The sudden onset of rays of sunset making their way through the shutters half-blinded him, and he rubbed his eyes to clear them. Behind him, on the wall, his shadows stood as a stark silhoutte, framed by a headdress of feathers.
As his eyes cleared, he grasped hold of his staff once more and stepped forwards - only to hear the sounds of hurried footsteps rounding the corner ahead. He growled to himself, peered ahead, and wondered just who was making such a noise at this hour.
Round the corner burst an energetic figure, bark-skin covering the lower jaw, sleek longbow strung over bleached leather armour, hair tied back into a tight bun. She screeched to a halt in front of the Magistrate, who gave her a long, cold stare, waiting for her to speak.
Despite her exertions, she seemed to require almost no time to recover her breath, and stood up straight in front of him.
"Magistrate Suuli? They said you'd be here. I have a report!"
Suuli took in a deep breath, allowing his initial frustrations to subside.
"Speak to me, Suaq. Name yourself. What report do you have?"
"Eadlin Arsdottir, Magistrate. I am... Frayed. My band and I - we've tracked some bandits - kidnappers, we think - they took people - they swam away - how did they do that, though? It doesn't make sense - they weren't merrow, and in any case-"
"Silence!" roared Suuli, with sudden voice and passion. Eadlin looked visibly shaken, but clamped her mouth shut, fingers dancing along her bow.
"You mean to say," he continued, "that you have encountered some bandits kidnapping people. Where was this?"
"On the coast. Up and down the rocks, actually. They keep moving - sometimes inland, sometimes right on the shore - been there for a few weeks, I think. Have you not heard of them yet? I think they're maybe Suaq, or Steinr, or-"
"Slow down. How many bandits?"
Eadlin stopped moving for a moment, eyes closed, brow furrowed.
"One or two dozen, Magistrate. They move in a group, like trained fighters - or warriors bonded by blood. They've been attacking people - my cousin Vaaki said two of her hall never came back from a hunt, and-"
"Who are they kidnapping? How many?"
"We saw two. Dressed like Suaq, although not wearing much beyond thick skins on their back. We couldn't get to them in time - we were going to open fire, but then they all dived into the Gullet, and we couldn't line up our shots, and we thought someone should know, so we came-"
Suuli gave the ground a firm, hefty tap with his staff. The echo reverberated up and down the corridor, causing Eadlin to once again fall into silence.
"They dived into the Gullet? Weapons, armour and all?"
"Yes, Magistrate. They just disappeared - like they could breathe water and swim like fish! The poor Suaq must be drowned by now, I-"
"That will do, Eadlin. Return to your warband. I will take it from here."
Eadlin turned and half-sprinted back down the corridor, rapidly disappearing from view. Suuli shook his head - it looked like it would be several hours before he could lay himself down to rest...
Before each summit, the Imperial war scouts and the prognosticators produce lists of every conjunction that they have been able to identify. These are not all the conjunctions, these are simply all the conjunctions that they have been able to find. Because of their focus, these conjunctions are usually very military-orientated; they are focused on the movement of the Empire's armies and the barbarian forces arrayed against them. Smaller conjunctions that allow groups to purse their own personal agendas are only rarely discovered by the Imperial civil service.
It is important to note that the details of a conjunction is not fixed - in theory new conjunctions can appear and the destination or size of a conjunction are know to be mutable. The civil service strongly recommend that you check the size and timing of any conjunctions that interest you after you arrive at Anvil.
Depending on the number of skirmish crew available, the size of the conjunctions might be increased between now and the event. They will be fixed Friday afternoon at time-in. Please check the conjunctions early Friday evening to confirm the gate size.
Out of the East
|Beggar's Trail, Willstone, Redoubt||18:15 Friday||20 people||20 minutes|
|Trees on the Mountain of Aquina, Limus, Redoubt||18:45 Friday||20 people||20 minutes|
As the summer sun reaches its height at the Solstice, bands of fast-moving Druj warriors cross the border from Zenith. They head north, west and south from the shrouded mountains of the former Urizen territory. These elite fighters bear beetle banners splashed with bright greens, reds and yellows, and they make swift progress down from the high passes and out across the open plains of Iteri, before heading into the the lands of Morrow, Redoubt, and Spiral. Bands of sentinels are readied to counter their advance, but it is soon clear that they have little interest in facing off against opposing forces, avoiding citadels and slinking away when they are approached. It is apparent to Urizeni and Imperial War Scouts alike that these barbarian Druj are a reconnaissance force, intent on scouting the lands adjacent to Zenith.
The prognosticators have detected two conjunctions on the first evening of the solstice. War scouts have tracked parties of Druj fighters moving through eastern Redoubt. The first opportunity is on the Beggar's Trail, a road that leads south through Willstone and is close to the army camp of the Winter Sun. The second will allow passage to the Trees on the Mountain of Aquina, in eastern Limus and across a wide valley from where the Granite Pillar have a camp.
The Imperial War Scout will have the latest updates on these incursions, and they will surely be of interest to the people Urizen, the Imperial Orcs, and Highguard. Sending forces to counter these raiders will stop their exploration of the Urizen territories that neighbour Zenith and prevent them returning to their leaders with a greater understanding of the surrounding terrain and the Imperial forces currently stationed there.
Out of the West
|East Nuajaat Bank, Sealtoq||18:30 Friday||30 people||20 minutes|
|West Nuajaat Bank, Sealtoq||19:00 Friday||30 people||20 minutes|
|Nuajaat Bluff, Sealtoq||19:30 Friday||30 people||20 minutes|
|Nuajaat Cairns, Sealtoq||20:00 Friday||30 people||20 minutes|
The ring of Jotun steel that has encircled the town of Atalaq is slowly tightening, heralding its inevitable fall. Everyone the Jotun encounter is being given the Choice - join the Jotun as thralls, or die as their enemies with a weapon in hand. All except those those considered too young to fight; children of all ages are taken as thralls by the Jotun without a second thought.
Those who lived in the town or the surrounding wilderness must pick between two bitter fates, either death at the hands of the overwhelming Jotun forces or else flee. Those with something to live for are desperately trying to escape. Those who have decided that their heroes journey ends today, head out to battle, victory is impossible - but every hero who dies facing the Jotun buys another minute for their loved ones to escape.
A series of conjunctions to the Nuajaat Shore on the southern banks of Atkonaroq, Sealtoq, will provide four opportunities to intercept Jotun forces that are closing in on the coastline and the refugees from Atalaq that are sheltering there. All along the edge of the cold waters are clusters of families, traders, trackers and herders, hurriedly assembling makeshift rafts on which to head north, or looking to the horizon hoping to see the fabled Hylie arrive.
Whilst slim, there is every chance that these citizens can be saved if the heroes of the Mark put themselves in harms way and stand solid against the Jotun warriors as they make for the coast. Success at Nuajaat Shore will provide valuable time to build transports or hide in the rocky headlands along the shoreline. Defeating the Jotun warbands will prevent hundreds of helpless Wintermarkers from being slain or taken as thralls but it will not stop the barbarians heading towards Firehand's Taiga, further to the north, but the fate of the Suaq people in this more distant location will be determined by the decisions of the Military Council at the Friday Muster, and the actions of the Heroes of Anvil should the major conjunction be chosen.
Out of the Past
|Eleri's Paths, Elerael, Brocéliande||21:00 Friday||30 people||20 minutes|
|Eleri's Paths, Elerael, Brocéliande||21:30 Friday||20 people||20 minutes|
The Navarr egregores have reported on a strange disturbance at Eleri’s Paths, in Elerael, Brocéliande; close to the Brackensong Steading and the site of the former Whispering Drays Steading. A group of warriors, who appear to be Navarr, have been observed by the Courageous Bough Striding among the forest of the region. While dressed in Navarri garb and bearing tattoos on their skin, this group have a strange air about them; they appear distant and detached, and oddly uncultured, in ways that even the most lonesome Navarri rarely display. Who they are, or what they want at this time has yet to be established, but one fact is known; they travel with a group of strange heralds of the Spring Realm. A rag-tag mixture of demure creatures clad in ivy, and twisted figures consumed by vegetation. Already it has been suggested that they are heralds of the Greenest Mother, the Spring Eternal Yaw'nagrah; who because of the Conclave's declaration of emnity cannot send her minions into the lands of the Empire.
Whilst this territory has never been part of the Empire, it is still an important part of the Navarr nation, and many steadings can be found on the borders, and several stridings venture towards the heart of the Vallorn that dwells at the centre of the area. Yet, as it is not part of the Empire, the Greenest Mother is able to extend her influence over this place. The vates of the Courageous Bough have sent word to the civil service and via their egregores that they are preparing to defend a Spring Regio on Eleri's Paths, from which the heralds exited, protecting the approach with daily castings of the warding ritual, There Is No Welcome Here. They are running out of crystal mana and have sufficient to last out the Solstice, providing they can defend themselves from the unusual Navarr warriors.
Two conjunctions, one after another, have been detected by the civil service and a short briefing is being prepared for the Imperial War Scout. Access to the Spring Regio at Eleri's Paths offers an opportunity for the vates of the Navarr to bring to repair the trods of Brocéliande with the Dance of Navarr and Thorn. (Because Brocéliande is not under Imperial control, the ritual can only be cast at a regio in the territory). The Navarr egregores will have additional insight to share with anyone who wishes to travel to Brocéliande on these conjunctions.
Accessibility guidance for the conjunction is available below. Please be aware that this information may contain possible spoilers.
|Walking||The second of these two conjunctions has been classified as "combat unlikely or contained"; participants will have to travel several hundred yards to the start of the encounter, but will not need to move far once the skirmish begins.|
Out of the Sea
|Hval Beach, West Marsh||21:15 Friday||15 people||20 minutes|
In the weeks leading up to the Summer Solstice, there are sightings of a band of warriors on the shores of West Marsh in Kallavesa. Though they seem for the most part to avoid Winterfolk halls and other settlements, they furiously attack any wandering groups they come across.
A scouting party of Frayed led by Eadlin Arsdottir tried to follow this band and ambush them, but they were unsuccessful. According to Eadlin's account, she witnessed the warriors chasing down a number of people dressed in Suaq garb and taking them captive. Before the Frayed could intervene, the foe-warriors marched their charges into the sea of the Gullet, and the whole host disappeared beneath the waves.
Eadlin herself was at a loss to explain this strange event, but Marchers from nearby North Fens in Bregasland are already relating their tales of the strange shapeshifting beasts that live in the Gullet, devouring hapless fisherfolk who stay too long at anchor.
Thanks to the scouting efforts of the Frayed, it has been determined that the band of warriors is still active in the area, and seems to be hunting for something - possibly more victims to drag beneath the waves. Prognosticators have determined that a conjunction exists to Hval Beach, West Marsh, Kallavesa. The attention of Courageous heroes is required to deny these attackers any opportunity to kidnap further victims.
Out of Time
|Weaving Wood, Operus, Morrow||14:30 Saturday||30 people||20 minutes|
|Green Road Citadel, Operus, Morrow||15:00 Saturday||30 people||20 minutes|
|Wooden Rest of Dusk, Ossuary, Spiral||15:30 Saturday||30 people||20 minutes|
A further series of three conjunctions on the second day of the solstice have been identified in locations where the War Scouts know the Druj scouts are active. Among the greenery of the Weaving Wood, Operus in Morrow; the Green Road Citadel near Canterspire in Morrow; and the Wooden Rest of Dusk close to the Twilight Gate, in northern Ossuary, Spiral. The Imperial War Scout will have the latest updates on these incursions, which will be of relevance to the people Urizen, as well as citizens from the League, Imperial Orcs and Varushka, nations that all have campaign armies in Spiral. Sending forces to counter these scouts will stop their exploration of the Urizen territories that neighbour Zenith, preventing them returning to their leaders with a greater understanding of the surrounding terrain and the Imperial forces currently stationed there.
Out of Nowhere
|Whitethorn Gulch, Southridge||15:45 Saturday||15 people||20 minutes|
|Eafshal, Valasmark||16:15 Saturday||15 people||20 minutes|
Following the reports of increased Feni raiding in Hahnmark, the civil service have identified two conjunctions that will allow the heroes of the Empire to strike at raiding parties. Success at either one of these opportunities will mitigate half the impact on Winterfolk farms, businesses and herb gardens each; success at both will completely remove the impact of the raids.
A conjunction has been identified to Whitethorn Gulch in Southridge. The report comes off the back of the news that a group of Winterfolk Frayed called the Talons of Dusk attempted to tail and ambush a Feni raiding party. There is little information to hand, but it seems that their attempt was unsuccessful, and they are fleeing back towards Moot - but are currently being hotly pursued by the vengeful Feni.
There is a second opportunity to travel to Eafshal in Valasmark. Recently, a Feni warband attempted to assault a nearby Steinr hall, but were sorely beaten back by the local warriors. Reports indicate they are camping near the ruins of Eafshal, a once-prosperous hall of grimnir who perished en masse during the campaigns of Emperor Guntherm. This opportunity would allow the warband to be defeated before they are able to retreat back into Southridge and continue raiding.
Out of the Shadows
|Verdant Maw, Westwood, Liathaven||18:00 Saturday||60 people||50 minutes|
|Verdant Maw, Westwood, Liathaven||18:20 Saturday||20 people||30 minutes|
A pair of conjunctions to a Spring regio in the depths of Westwood have been brought to the attention of the civil service prognosticators by the Navarr egregores. The inaccessible location of the regio known as the Verdant Maw, the withdrawal of Imperial armies from West Ranging, and threatening presence of the Vallorn have made it next to impossible to obtain reliable details of the terrain, the disposition of the enemy, or how close the first portal will open from the regio. However, given the location of the conjunctions, it is certain however that those travelling to Liathaven will be exposed to the venemous effects of the Vallorn Miasma whilst there, and are likely to contract Green Lung if they linger too long.
The Navarr egregores have informed the civil service that these conjunctions could allow the vates of the nation a unique opportunity to follow through on plans they devised for the casting of several high-magnitude rituals when the Heroes of the Forests ventured through the Sentinel Gate to West Ranging at the Spring Equinox. Heralds of Surut of the Thrice-Cursed Court have also visited Anvil over recent days proclaiming an interest in the Verdant Maw on behalf of their master. Surut has expressed a wish to claim the Verdant Maw for his own purposes, but requires it to be transformed into a regio of the Winter Realm. It is understood that a herald of the Burnt Steward - the Baron of the Bone Orchard, already known to the Navarr - will be awaiting the heroes of the Navarr near the regio and will offer minor boons to empower ritualists skilled in the lore of their master's realm should it be required, and to receive the regio into his lord's keeping.
Accessibility guidance for the conjunction is available below. Please be aware that this information may contain possible spoilers.
|Combat||The second of these two conjunctions has been classified as "combat possible"; participants will have to travel several hundred yards to the start of the encounter, but will not need to move far once the skirmish begins. The level of threat will depend on the success of the first party venturing through the Sentinel Gate, and their ability to keep the enemy away from the second party. If suitable precautions are taken to protect the ritualists, then the second conjunction would be classed as "combat highly unlikely or contained" meaning that the risk of entering into combat is only slightly more than in Anvil, providing the player remains in the contained area.|
You will be playing Vallorn husks of either dead humans or orcs. Simple LRP base layers will be sufficient, but any Navarr, Marcher, Wintermark or Jotun kit you have will make for a better looking encounter. We have a number of small latex domino masks to wear, along with shredded shrouds. A simple effect can also be achieved with face paint and our makeup team can help apply it at the Battle Prep Tent. We also have plastic vines that you can accessorise your costume with.
Vallorn husks are predominantly shambling corpses animated by vegetation, and there will be limited need to run about but combat is highly-likely. We do not require water carriers or low-combatant support forces. Please do not bring the following equipment:
- Bows and Crossbows
- Throwing weapons
Out of the South
|Haven Rocks, Riposi, Sarvos||20:00 Saturday||30 people||20 minutes|
|White Sands, Longbeach, Necropolis||20:30 Saturday||30 people||20 minutes|
Shortly before the Summer Solstice, reports reach the civil service of two sightings of Grendel vessels making landfall on the northern coast of the Bay of Catazar. Both ships are reported to be badly damaged, sitting low in the water, with torn rigging and tattered sails - likely having encountered a storm out in deeper water. The first ship has foundered on rocks just below the surface at Haven Rocks to the east of Ophan's Haven in Riposi, on the outskirts of Sarvos. The second has run aground at White Sands, Longbeach, Necropolis, several miles across the border from Sarvos. Marines from both vessels have come ashore to locate materials to repair their transports, and to gather fresh water and other sundries. Several farms, smelters and woodmills in the area have been pillaged by both parties and they are now returning to get their vessels seaborne before local forces can move to intercept them.
The scouts are confident that these two wayward ships are not the precursor to an invasion force or even an attempt to scout out or establish spy networks on the coast. The orc marines have harassed the local populace, stolen property and murdered anyone who has stood in their way. If nothing else, these two conjunctions offer a chance to exact revenge on the pirates, and potentially recover any property that have taken. The Imperial War Scout, and egregores of Highguard and the League will likely know a little more by the time of the Summer Solstice.