525 - Uneasy Allies

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The party converges on a crashed Goa'uld mothership, with new truths gaining them some unlikely allies.

Score 895

05/12/24
Begin: 5/30/20 11:00 End: 5/30/20 22:00

The darkness of twilight enveloped the land as Braethr and Fenris, flanked by the Coalition Forces of Strike Force Skyfire, moved stealthily towards the looming ha’tak, the former mothership of Supreme System Lord Ra. Keen not to repeat their mistakes from their initial attempt at assaulting the enemy stronghold, the duo moved stealthily directly towards the crashed vessel under the fogcover emanated from the smaller vessels of the First Fleet.

As they reached the hull of the vessel, Feyre and Kiersey’s voices reached out through their iGauntlets, bringing to light the startling revelations of two days ago: Feyre is the daughter of the now slain Ra, a Harcesis born with all of the genetic memory of the Goa'uld. Asking whether they should use the stone given to Feyre by Telchak, Ra's former First Prime, to teleport aboard the ha'tak and take control of the Jaffa. Insisting that now was not a good time to try, Fenris decided to push forward.

As they approached the main entrance, Fenris caught the faint sound of movement near the ship's entrance. He could hear the commanding voice of Telchak ordering the second wave of jaffa to charge into battle. Not knowing that the approaching fog hid a massive Coalition force, Telchak decided to seize the opportunity and utilize the fog to his advantage, planning to take the shadow army assaulting the vessel by surprise with overwhelming force. After ordering the next wave into battle, Telchak retreated to the bridge of the ship to continue overseeing the battle raging to the north, ordering the main entrance to the vessel sealed.

Sensing their opportunity to gain ingress to the vessel closing with the large bulkhead doors, Fenris and Braethr demonstrated their mastery of teamwork and strategy. At Braethr's request, Fenris pulled out and handed him his Immovable Rod, all the while helping Braethr to calculate the distance for his plan. In a master stroke, Braethr used the information supplied by Fenris to teleport in a puff of smoke and brimstone using his Cape of the Mountebank right to the middle of the door nearby. With seconds to spare, Braethr locked the Immovable Rod in place, causing the door to shudder and screech to a halt, allowing their plan to move forward.

Unbeknownst to Fenris and Braethr, Feyre and Kiersey decided to teleport to the ha'tak, planning to seize control of the vessel and jaffa forces using Feyre's newly-recognized bloodline. Crushing the stone provided by Telchak, the duo appeared suddenly on the ships bridge, immediately finding themselves durrounded by Horus guards. Proclaiming Feyre's right to rule,they were able to convince the guards to summon Telchak. Shortly after, the First Prime arrived followed by his retinue, bending the knee in deference and ordering the jaffa forces to submit to Feyre's will.

A moment later, alerts went off throughout the vessel, warning of enemy intruders. Pulling up a holographic display using the bridge controls, Telchak warned his new System Lord Feyre that emeny forces were breaching the ship, and that the main entrance could not be sealed. Switching to a different hologram to detect and differentiate jaffa from other living beings, Telchak noted that many of the "enemy" groups aboard appeared to have some of Ra's jaffa spies within, a startling revelation to Feyre and Kiersey. Ordering the jaffa not to engage the Coalition forces, Feyre demanded to be escorted down to meet with the "enemy" commanders, proclaiming them as worthwhile allies. Kiersey, meanwhile, used the distraction of Feyre's commands to communicate to Braethr and Fenris, telling them to order their forces not to engage the jaffa. Shortly after, Kiersey and Feyre began descending to the lower levels of the ship, accompanied by Feyre's new Royal Guard, a mix of Horus and Serpent Guards in gold and red armor.

Meeting in a hallway where the jaffa and Coalition forces stood off, the party was reunited with Telchak in tow. Seeing value in an alliance between the Coalition and the jaffa formerly under Ra's command, Feyre suggested an alliance to Telchak. Needing to be convinced of the loyalty of the rest of the party to his new Lord, Telchak demanded that a test of loyalty be solved by Fenris, providing him with an ancient puzzle devised by Ra known as the Keys of Abydos, which Fenris was able to solve after some moderate difficulty. Demanding a similar test of loyalty from Braethr, the dragonborn revealed that a test of loyalty wouldn't be necessary, since he killed Ra himself. Offended and perturbed by this revalation, Telchak and several surrounding jaffa all pointed their weapons at the paladin in fury. Being ordered to stand down by Feyre, he and the other guards grudgingly lowered their weapons.

Formalizing their uneasy alliance by deciding to work together to deveat the shadow army assaulting from the north, Telchak offered a traditional jaffa blood oath to his new allies. Braethr and Fenris, refusing to swear allegiance to Telchak, stood firm in their resolve, further complicating the delicate situation. Sensing the danger of Telchak's current course, Feyre ordered that the tradition be suspended for the time being. Seemingly torn between tradition and loyalty, Telchak reluctantly bowed to Feyre in submission to her will, stating that he would be returning to the bridge to oversee the jaffa troops in the ongoing battle. Feyre, Kiersey, and Braethr would go to Feyre's royal chambers aboard the ha'tak to plot their next moves, while Fenris vowed to "take care of the enemy commander personally."

Outside, the shadow army launched a fierce assault on the ha'tak, threatening its defenses. Invigorated by the infusion of fresh troops, the new alliance of the jaffa and the Coalition surged forward, driving the shadow army back. In a display of raw power, Fenris, assuming the form of an enormous earth elemental, plummeted from the skies like a meteor from the heavens towards the ruined village the enemy was using as their base, crushing the enemy commander and dispersing the attacking forces. Sending word through the Midnight Talons, Fenris ordered the Coalition forces to begin cleansing the immediate region around the ha'tak, while the jaffa chased the remains of the shadow army to the edge of the ruins and picking off stragglers as they attempted to flee into the corrupted Silverdune Expanse.

As Fenris returned to the ha'tak, the party discussed their next moves, uses for their potential allies, Feyre's new Harcesis knowledge, as well as the revelation of jaffa spies within the Coalition ranks. Deciding their next move should be to exploit their new vessel and attempt to find upgrades to their armaments, particularly for Braethr and Fenris, the party began exploring several labs used by Ra to conduct research on artifacts pilfered from his many domains. Amidst the troves of powerful artifacts and technologies, one object stood out to Kiersey in particular: the Rod of Kings, an ancient heirloom belonging to House Mirrorwind. Confused as to how it could have ended up here, Kiersey freed it from its enclosure, at which point the gem in the scepter began to glow a brilliant cyan light. Confused by the light, knowing that it should only glow in those of true Mirrorwind blood, Kiersey vowed to discover the mysteries behind its presence here.

Exploring the ship further, the party ventured upon a large research lab heavily fortified and guarded by four Horus Guards. Ordering the space to be opened, the party discovered a large obsidian obelisk inside, carved with runes in both Celestial and Goa'uld and connected to the ship and several research stations via a multitude of cables and wires. Looking into one of the nearby consoles, Fenris discovered the artifact to be the Planar Anchor, mentioned to Feyre previously by Telchak as part of Ra's plans to reinforce his armies with the remaining jaffa and System Lords currently conquering Toril. Further investigation of the hold by Kiersey revealed a nearby pedestal and chaapa'ai, providing the heroes with a lifeline to their forces outside the Seven Isles.

Soon after their discoveries, Telchak arrived to beseech his new Lord for her orders. Deeply concerned about the infiltration of the Coalition by jaffa, Feyre ordered the recall of all jaffa spies from amongst their new allies under the pretense of "debriefing" them. Immediately, Telchak expressed his discomfort at the prospect of spies in particularly high Coalition ranks being exposed. Despite Feyre's attempts to convince and even order Telchak to reveal the identities of these spies, Telchak steadfastly refused, citing an oath Ra made him swear to keep silent on the matter, as well as the fact that it was quite possible that many of the spies' identities were known only to Ra himself. Begrudgingly accepting this reality, Feyre ordered Telchak to begin planning to enact Ra's plan to stabilize Toril. Stating that he would have forces ready "within the hour," he departed for the bridge to make final arrangements. Before he left, Kiersey prompted Telchak on the presence of the Rod of Kings aboard Ra's vessel, to which he responded that "a light-haired woman wearing dark robes brought it through the chaapa'ai as a gift." Sensing potential danger surrounding Telchak's loyalty, the party mused on challenging and replacing Telchak with someone more loyal, perhaps Teal'c.

The party began mulling over their new plans to stabilize Toril and contact their allies throughout Faerûn and Lyrrick. Jarvis, having been asked by Braethr to scan one of the research labs earlier, informed the party of the presence of an ancient Zero Point Module, a powerful energy source capable of producing almost limitless energy. Deciding that the best use for the device would be to transport it back to the ancient city of Atlantis, the party devised their final plans: the party would use the chaapa'ai to transport the Planar Anchor to Toril, specifically to Whiteridge, a small town in northern Alsryn revealed to be Ra's planned destination due to it's presence near the intersection of three leylines. While Kiersey and Feyre would work to stabilize the temporal storms currently ravaging Toril, Braethr and Fenris would make their way to Lyrrick to enlist their distant allies in Atlantis.

Sensing the imminent danger of their plans, Fenris elected to call upon his diety Silvanus for aid. Beseeching with all his will and desperation, Silvanus felt a strong desire to aid her Guardian, and decided to visit him in person. Stepping through a golden portal into the chamber, SIlvanus was shocked to find herself magically shackled to the nearby obelisk. With a look of pure horror and terrible recognition of the artifact binding her, she looked at her Guardian and whispered "What have you done?" As the artifact began to drain the goddess of her natural powers, Braethr intervened in a desperate bid to rectify their mistake. Attempting and failing to push Silvanus back through the portal, Braethr's efforts gave the goddess of nature just the opening she needed to save herself. The collision with Braethr's body created an unstable ripple in the fabric of space between Silvanus and the artifact, allowing the deity to unleash her strength. Expanding the ripple into a tear, Silvanus opened a rift to the Astral Plane, pulling herself and Braethr through to safety.

Finding themselves astride a ribbon of light amongst the stars, Silvanus annoyedly snapped her fingers, transporting herself, Braethr, and Fenris to the Guardian's Expanse. Composing herself, she thanked Braethr for his valiance and began speaking to her Guardian. Bestowing a great boon upon Fenris, she expanded his ability to attune to magical artifacts in exchange for a portion of his luck, maintaining the balance the goddess strives to protect. Infusing Fenris' demiplane with bounty and growth, Silvanus gave one final word of advice and warning as she departed: the nature of the Planar Anchor. As her voice echoed through the trees and valley of the Expanse, Fenris and Braethr returned to the chamber containing the artifact, setting the stage for their plans.

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