COLONIZERS Arc 2 (S1) - Colonizers of Myria

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  • @Aggroman15 please don't let the tree guys die. I think a treant faction is cool. Plus pinterest has a ton of cool art for you cool faction under the "fantasy treant / tree folk" tags if you need art. Best of luck friend :)
  • ~ Phase Two - The Land Fights Back

    This time players will have different challenges to face... and for some of them, the stakes could be higher than just getting the highest score...





    @KorandAngels @Tonysparks Your battles and attempts to recruit have developed into a full blown war, but unfortunately, that is not your only concern now. The indigenous peoples of Omir have borne witness to the ruthlessness of the Witch Hunters and the twisted magics of the Cult, and they've had enough. They have mobilized to engage any forces that attempt to move through the region, their base being marked with a skull on the map above. They will not convert, and with the hastening collapse of the plane in the region since Salvia has left, they believe that peace is not longer an option.


    Art Credit: Uprising by ArtDeepMind on DeviantArt

    They know they are outnumbered and outmatched, but they've made an impact; this uprising has left both of your factions lacking resources. Trade routes leading to your factions have been cut off, and without Salvia, many resources native to Omir are no longer within reach as long as its people still stand.

    Your challenge: Make two to three cards to show how you plan to deal with this situation. You can engage with the people of Omir, set up alternate trade routes, etc., and if you trade with other factions through interactions, the cards you submit for those interactions can be used towards this challenge.

    Notice: A low score in this challenge could potentially result in an early elimination.



    @cadstar369 It takes Salvia about a day to migrate to the border of Reya. The land grows increasingly unstable as you approach, however. You're battered by hail and blasted by sand. You ford through flooded rivers and lie low as windstorms sweep the border. Your journey to the edge of this place has been difficult, and it doesn't look like it's going to get any easier. As you cross the border, you feel the earth shake beneath you, and witness as cracks form along the leylines, forming something incredible before you...


    Art Credit: Anomaly by ChrisCold on DeviantArt

    It looks as though the fabric reality is being pulled apart, like threads of string being tugged and creating pinchs in the world before you. However, the pinches soon collapse in, the ground breaking like a giant pane of glass, and whipping across your face is a painful, howling wind. The breaking continues towards you, and it seems like running isn't an option; a hole's opened in the plane, pulling in everything around it, and it has to be prepared before you can progress. Above, an aether storm has begun to form, and it's only accelerating the process.

    Your Challenge: Make two to three cards that depict you combating the maelstrom. mending the land, etc.



    @Nomp @Aggroman15 @SpellPiper2213 Things have been amiss where you are. Strange disappearances have disrupted your ranks, and you can't be certain who is at fault. Anomalies on the plane? Sabotage from other factions? Accidents on the field? No matter which is the case, you have great need to look into these disappearances, because they're growing more frequent by the day...

    Your Challenge: Make two to three cards to depict your investigation and/or the people performing it. If you assist other factions with their investigations through interactions, the cards you submit for those interactions can be used towards this challenge.
  • ok, give me about a day to think of a story. 
  • edited January 26
    Alum marches steadfast against the shadows of Omir, painted cloaks of ominous gray line the darkening skies. The dark shaded armor releasing an ominous whistle as he passes by, followed by multiple more horses kicking dust into the air.

    He scoffs at the lack of defenses from Salvia despite his warnings, but he only came here with one goal, to retrieve his fallen comrade. He snaps his fingers and spell hunters blitz through the bushes, slashing suspected assailants in the throats. As the two corpses are thrown forward their makeshift spears and farming armaments strung about, Alum sees that they are human. He halts his transit in the middle of the passage, seemingly protected by only the five units that flank him, before he is surrounded by furious, villagers.

    Ringleader: "I assume you are looking for these" *A villager lifts the disfigured corpse of Dykus up, while multiple bodies hide behind them.*

    Almost instinctively Alum trudges his horse forward.

    Ringleader: "YOU WILL MOVE NO FURTHER!!!" *The villager barks as three others push pitch forks towards Alum's horse, despite their shaking hands.*

    Alum: "Give me the bodies of my comrades and I will be on my way, you will hear no more from me in your accursed lands"

    Ring leader: "On your way.. It's too late to be on your way, countless killed monstrosities rising where you go, children killed in their own houses, places meant to be safe" *he holds the torch closer to the corpse.* "No one leaves here alive today." *The villagers raise their torches and chant angrily in agreement*

    Alum: "I am NOT!.....I am not the one who you one who you should be fighting, those foul things calling themselves gods did this, instead of you going after them you chose to deface my comrades?"

    Ringleader: "I could do that" *he smirks staring at his equally rowdy comrades* "but killing you would be easier. Maybe those things will stop coming once you are dead." *The ring leader toses Dykus's corpse on to the others and sets the pile on fire*

    Alum: "pfft" *Alum puffs* "pffhahaha!!! PFFHAHAHAHAHA!!!

    A sudden dark coldness envelopes the atmosphere, as primal fear sows itself into the surrounding villagers and soldiers alike amidst the maniacal laughter. The villagers step back from Alum without dropping their weapons, but maintain their hold as the weapons shake in their hands.

    Alum: "Go wait for my return at a safer distance."

    Alum's soldier: "But sir..." *he hesitantly croaks*

    Alum: "DO NOT MAKE ME REPEAT MYSELF"

    Alum's soldier: "I can't, not after what they did to my family. I must get revenge, and not even you can st..."

    Before the soldier can finish the sentence, a swift blade meets their head, slashing through it, diagonally and slicing them halfway to the ribline. As they fall bleeding, some of the villagers lose their bearing and begin to vomit, while a few back away in fear. The remaining soldiers get the message clear and ready and begin to retreat, as they come out from their positions, their great numbers even shocking the already demoralized villagers.

    Ringleader: "S..So what now, y~o~u plan to take as all on your own" *he lifts his spear*

    Alum lifts up his arm and unseals his glove. A dark foul energy permeates the air, forcing some to begin running in fear. A rancid cold metallic taste fills the air, despite the air itself being unchanged.

    Alum: "I had hoped that there wouldn't be a day like another where I would have to do this, but you have forced my hand. I surely hope that your life's were worth tosing away at this very moment, because I will make sure that before you die, you will think they weren't"

    Alum disperses energy into the burning corpses, as a symbol glows purple within it, Alum looks down, in painfully hesitation as his sorrow turns to anger, and with a cleanch of his hand, a bright purple glow eminates. 

    The soldiers only see a purple glow from place they await before hearing guttural screams, agonizing cries and desperate begs for mercy. Some of the sounds that come from the direction of the glow, are incomprehensible, but they bring shivers to the soldiers. They are sounds that one would never imagine any living being could make. But finally with a second glow, silence finally follows. Fifty villagers, all silenced in a matter of minutes. 

    Alum returns back on horseback, chunks of teeth and blood painting his armor. As his horse trudges dragging blood along the trail, there is an unwritten silence that follows his next command. None will ever know, what horrors occurred in that moment, and perhaps it's for the best.

    Alum: "We shall return to Salem, where we shall hold a memorial. The bodies were beyond salvation after what those heathens had done. Mark my words, all that ever crossed my people will pay"




    Entry cards


    I hope this becomes a tale that the villagers who come to view the bloody mess will immortalize in lore. Preferably calling it "the blood march" or something similar.

  • edited January 25
    @Everybody here is the (more-or-less) official first Ally/Enemy list!

    Seven Leagues (@SpellPiper2213 @me) - Red/Green

    Allies: Apothecaria Salvia, Valenos Forest

    Enemies: [none]


    Cult of the True Gods (@KorandAngels) - Red/White/Black

    Allies: [none]

    Enemies: Witch Hunters,


    Kingdom of Antaias (@Nomp) - White/Green/Black

    Allies: Valenos Forest

    Enemies: Witch Hunters


    Alum’s Witch Hunters (@Tonysparks) - Red/White/Black

    Allies: [none]

    Enemies: True Cult, Apothecaria Salvia, Antaias


    Apothecaria Salvia (@cadstar369) - Green/White/Blue

    Allies: Seven Leagues, Valenos Forest

    Enemies: Witch Hunters


    Valenos Forest (@Aggroman15) - Green

    Allies: Seven leagues, Apothecaria Salvia, Antaias

    Enemies: [none]


    My story will come in the next few days.

  • PART 1
    The council has gathered again, this time on a balcony in full view of the few hundred denizens of the Grand Plateau. 
    "Your assassination worked, Heletok." said a reptilian member of the council. "Although the barbarian you killed appears to have been important to the leader of those despicable swamp-dwellers." 
    "What is more relevant now is that the primitives abandoned by the alchemist's migration have become hostile to both us and the atheists to the north." said Sveech. "We need both protection and, if possible, a manner in which to assault the Atheists. We cannot convert these barbarians, but we should at least try to end their hostility." 
    The door to the balcony slowly opened. 

    (Lore card)
    "Great prophets, may I offer you an idea?" 
    "Speak, mortal ape." said Sveech. 
    "I have heard you created this city out of nothing. Could not you make a bridge across the heathen lands?" 
    "You are wise, ape. The True Gods will welcome you." 

    (Lore card)

    (Entry or whatever)
  • edited February 6
    Alright, first of all, I need to do my stuff for phase one, as it completely slipped my mind until now.

    Splinter sat at his throne atop the Spires, deep in thought. In front of him was seated the Grove of Elders, his main group of advisors which was made up of the former Elders of each of the 14 clans. 

    Finally, Splinter broke the silence. “I believe everybody has arrived, so I hereby declare this meeting of the Grove to be in session. Fenroot, what have you to report on reconstruction?”

    Fenroot, former Elder of the Oak-Clan and the overseer of all construction efforts, looked up at Splinter. “Rebuilding a forest after an event like this is slow difficult work. But we are making good progress, and Valenos should be restored within a reasonable amount of time. We are just lucky that the Spires were built as sturdy as they were, or else we’d have a lot more work on our hands.”

    “Good.” Splinter replied. “Now, on to more pressing matters. Since this earthquake, we have been pushed far closer to our neighbors. In fact, I’d bet I could look out from the top of the Spires and see the territory of the Seven Leagues. We have ignored the others on this world for too long. If we are to eventually make this plane ours, we will want allies against those who would threaten us.”

    Blossoming Branch, former Elder of Flower-Clan, then stepped forward. Confident and charismatic, she had been appointed as Splinter’s main advisor on foreign relations and diplomacy. “Grand Elder, I actually have some news to report on this front. We have received emissaries from three nations: A faction of alchemists, called Salvia, the nation to our north, called Antaias, and the Seven Leagues to the West. Salvia asks for neutrality, Antaias talks of an alliance, and the Leagues have also sent emissaries for peace. Among the Leagues’ emissaries are even a few of our own kind.”

    “Very interesting. I see no reason to refute the alchemists’ request of neutrality, they have done nothing to invoke our hostility as of yet. Perhaps we can even work out some trading to be done. As for the others, I would be glad to seek an alliance with the Leagues. They seem to have much respect for nature and it would be good to have a nearby ally in case we are invaded. Then, we have Antaias. I do not entirely trust them, their dark dealings make their civilization seem a bit… off to me, but I see no issue with gaining another ally.” Splinter said. “That just leaves two factions that did not send emissaries: Alum, and the so-called True Gods.”

    “Although we have not received them yet, I believe that they will be arriving soon. The Leagues and Antaias each speak of those sent to convert their people to the ways of the witch-hunters and the True Gods. Beyond that, it seems that conflict has broken out between the two sides, so I suspect that they are each on the lookout for potential allies in this war.” Blossoming Branch responded.

    Splinter frowned. “Hm. I can’t say I was expecting conflict this soon, but so be it. If and when these emissaries arrive, send them up here. I shall hear their cases, and decide what is the best course to take. For now, send diplomats back with the emissaries from the other three nations to work out alliances.” He then turned to Shadowed Boughs, the former Elder of Fern-Clan. “Shadowed Boughs, I want you to send some of your finest agents behind the group going to Antaias. Their rapid expansion and eldritch deals trouble me, and I find them difficult to trust. I want to ensure that they continue to work in our combined self-interest.”

    Shadowed Boughs nodded. “It will be done, Grand Elder. If they plan betrayal, you will know before the word has reached their own soldiers.”

    “Good. Now, if nobody else has anything to report, I declare this meeting of the Grove adjourned."

    Fern-Clan Infiltrator I wish to begin espionage on Antaias, as, while they may be an ally for now, their entire nation is built upon a system of creating deals mainly beneficial to them, and I do not want to be taken advantage of. For spies, I will be utilizing the Fern-Clan’s infiltrators, who have control over tiny nature spirits that are sent into enemy lands and important buildings in order to gather information.

    Woodland Alliance
    (Finally got around to updating Woodland Alliance)

    Although I'm suspicious of Antaias, I still wish to enter into friendly relations with each of the three factions that sent emissaries ( @Nomp , @SpellPiper2213 , and @cadstar369 ). I would especially like to enter into a more permanent military and trade alliance with The Seven Leagues, as they seem to have great respect for nature and even contain some treefolk among their ranks. 

    I will be back with my entry for Phase Two in the next few days!
  • @SpellPiper2213 I made an official list on the last page XD
  • edited January 29
    Deleted
  • edited January 29
    @KorandAngels similar to what happened last time, I assume @Tommia is going to determine whether or not the last paragraph of your entry happens or not, as well as to what extent it happens.
  • edited January 29
    Please respectfully don't tell me what my stuff does @KorandAngels, I have multiple cards that counter this exact scenario, so please cool down before I begin actively making cards targeted at your faction. Thanks.

    We can't always be omniscient, because if I wanted too I could just say, Alum pulls out a legendary sword that counters any spell and ensnared all gods in a ten mile radius.

    Reconsider your material friend:

  • At these point, I feel like you are missing out on emersing yourself in lore just to attack my faction. You can attack me if that is your tea, but don't play the my dinosaurs is bigger than yours game. Do it in a way that convinces me I was attacked.
  • edited January 29
    Sorry, I have not much time. I am been genuinely trying to compromise,.[
  • edited January 29
    Story Segment

    "Do I want to know what that is?" Ruut asked, gazing upon the expanding chaos.

    "Probably not," Macoto said, sagging slightly from the harrowing journey. "I'll have to do something about it…"

    "We will do something about it," Ruut said firmly, setting a hand on Macoto's shoulder as he mentally checked through the concoctions he had remaining. Certainly nothing that could do much about the impending calamity. "It has been too long since our last duet, and what a grand stage upon which to perform!"

    Macoto chuckled. "It must be pretty dire if you're waxing poetic. Let's sing a splendid serenade for the children."

    Soft words in an old tongue flowed from Macoto in a warm alto melody as she spread her arms wide as if to embrace the crumbling earth. Verdant energy gathered around her and spread outward, stalling the rampant disintegration.

    Ruut reached toward the heavens, an icy tenor counterpoint spilling into the wind. A watery array took shape before him, its energies seeking to still the savage storm.

    Of course, it wouldn't be much of a planar calamity if a mere serenade were enough to soothe it. While Macoto and Ruut managed to stall and begin slowly reversing the collapse, the howling winds continued to wildly hurl debris. After the long journey, it took all their effort to concentrate on the duet, leaving them no leeway to evade a large obsidian boulder tumbling their way.

    Moments before impact, a potion bottle crashed into the earthen projectile, a fiery explosion reducing it to harmless rubble. "Break time's over kids!" A rough voice shouted over the storm. "Get yer butts in gear and support the guildmasters!"

    Is that the third Protea sage? Ruut wondered briefly. Raim did like to tell stories of his time in the Anemone Circle; it would not be unusual for leadership to come naturally in moments of crisis. The array before Ruut faltered slightly, pulling his attention back to the song.

    Leaving their safety in the hands of the guild, Macoto and Ruut lost track of time as their serenade unfolded. Approximately an hour later, the anomaly had calmed to a point where it spontaneously imploded, dispersing into nothingness as the plane began to weave itself back together with the duo's encouragement.

    Macoto and Ruut collapsed against each other for support as they slowly slid to the ground, utterly exhausted from concentrating on the lengthy entreaty.

    "Is it done?" Raim asked, striding briskly toward the pair.

    "Not quite," Macoto said hoarsely. "It will take time to make sure the plane is healing properly."

    "Remain vigilant; I suspect it will take multiple days for the plane to stabilize. Triple check our defenses; neither we nor this plane can risk a relapse of this magnitude," Ruut added.

    "Leave the rest to us; clearly you two won't be able to move anytime soon." At Ruut's weak nod, Raim turned on his heel and walked away to reorganize the guild for the night.

    ~~~

    Ruut tried to pull himself up using his staff the next dawn, but his strength failed him immediately. I suppose this is understandable for being out of practice. I will likely be disabled for approximately another twelve hours before my strength starts to return to meaningful levels.

    "Where are you going?" Macoto asked, chuckling weakly.

    "Nowhere soon, apparently. Will the Chrysanthemum be fine without you?"

    "You should understand how well the guild can function without us. After all, we're only alive now because of their hard work."

    "Then you have found successors for your rituals?"

    "Enough for them to work without us for a day. I will have to lead some of the finishing touches though." Macoto coughed.

    "Go back to sleep. I know how much harder this is on you; I will handle the guild."

    "Don't push yourself too much for our sake, alright?"

    "I promise I will not."

    "Good." Macoto leaned against Ruut's back, quickly drifting off again. Ruut took the opportunity to meditate, attuning himself to the water in the air to expand his perception and quicken his recovery.

    ~~~

    That afternoon, a messenger came to inform Ruut of a returning caravan from the Valenos forest.

    "Good," Ruut said. "Continue doing business with the Seven Leagues and Valenos. If they seek information on us, you may speak freely about our regular services, as well as other factions' apparent views on us." The messenger ran off, leaving the guildmasters to their rest.


    Additional Notes
    Faction Relationships – The guild views the Seven Leagues and Valenos favorably, but relationships have not progressed beyond business. We have yet to receive word from the caravan to Antaias (it doesn't seem like it they died with the missionaries from the Zalgofarians and/or True Gods Cult, so their current status is unknown). The hatred from the Zalgofarians is one-sided, but it is unlikely that misunderstanding will ever be rectified. The guild views the True Gods Cult negatively purely due to their severe lack of manners. Apothecaria Salvia bears no active hostility toward any faction, but they understand it is in their best interests to avoid the Zalgofarians & True Gods Cult. (tl;dr at the moment the guild isn't "allies" or "enemies" with any faction, those are one-sided assumptions made by the other factions where relevant.)

    Apothecaria Salvia Set
    Segment Cards (Ritual of Growth happens outside the text; it is one of the rituals mentioned toward the end.)
    Serenade to Sky and StoneRaim Protea Circle Sage Ritual of Growth


  • Look the problematic story arose due to my lack of ideas, looking for art first then randomly making a card of it then randomly making a story over it. 
  • edited January 29
    Hey, no Ill will. Nobody is judging anything you dude, as long as you have a solid story to back it up and Tomia agrees I'll let it happen with grace. Just edit the story to atleast have a plausible way it could have affected me as severely as you claim. Also take your time on these, and don't stress out. I just don't want it to be a pull the most convenient counter scenario, even I have to sometimes scale back within my factions limitation. Keep up the great work Kor.
  • Reni chuckled as she watched the Valenos emissaries leave the tower. Their response had surprised her, but she was glad to have them as a permanent ally. Along with the alchemists, things were looking good for the Leagues, especially since the cultists and witch hunters were more focused on each other than the other factions. Along with the trade connection the Leagues had made with the alchemists, things were starting to look like they would even out in their favor.

    She looked back down at the paper on her desk. Members of the Leagues were vanishing at random - a Shield bodyguard here, two Brick reclaimers there, an Iron weaponmaker. Reni had been working with others in the Leagues to find out where they were going, but there hadn't been much progress.

    Evidence Collector

    Walking out of her office, Reni beckoned for an aide. "Is there a couple of outriders free?"

    "I believe so, yes."

    "I want as many as we can spare to help with the investigation. We need to get to the bottom of these vanished people. I don't want to be the League commander who loses people on her watch."

    The aide nodded and started walking away.

    Hunt for the Vanished

    ______________________________________________________________________________________

    @Aggroman15 the Seven Leagues accept the Valenos Forest's offer of a permanent alliance.

    @Tommia I didn't see that. Do you want to be the one who does the ally/enemy list?
  • Ok, alternate timeline
    The council met in a crowded room, with Ben Panthere standing respectfully in a corner. 
    "We have built a bridge across the chaotic fools the Alchemists abandoned. It has been successful, and we can even attempt to eliminate them if they become more threatening." 
    "There are good chances they will." said Brune Thorson. "It seems improbable, but I fear the best decision would be to, I have to stress temporarily, ally with those vandals to the north to clear the battleground between us."
    "Though they are followers of a gruesome philosophy, I doubt they are unchivilrous." said Sveech. "We cannot easily send them a message, as they would surely destroy it before reading it." 
    "There is no reason not to try." said a Council member. "They would have to read a letter before choosing to destroy it." 
    "I will create a beast like the ones around their city to carry a message." said another Council Member. 

    (Entry 2 I guess) (The Cult do not know much about what animals live in Aldym.) 
    "What of the conflict that will follow our victory?" Asked Huzizi. 
    "If we were to invade the swamps ourselves," said Brune Thorson, "it would be better to use physical forces rather than our direct powers. Antimagic is suffused throughout everything the Atheists possess." 

    (Not really a card)

    (Sorry about badness of story.)

  • edited February 2
    @KorandAngels I do not have a problem with your story making abilities, so no need to apologize. I just didn't want to be made into cannon folder you know haha. As long as your writing can convince me, I'm down for whatever madness the cult wizards unleash. But if you say, I cast a spell so strong it ignores anti magic then I call bs  :D.

    Plus, every anti-hero needs a rival.

  • We are both pretty antiheroic to be honest. 
  • Are you going to respond? 
  • Oh, I thought there was an unwritten agreement. I will post something when I get time.
  • edited February 3
    Ok, great. I mostly want to see them react to my critter to be honest. 
  • edited February 3
    Oh, by the way, do you prefer 

    Or 

    They're literally the same guy, but is it better with or without the Viashino subtype? (For my army in case you think I post in the wrong place)
  • Viashino is a better subtype
  • You can actually see the character properly in the art too. Thanks for a feedbkac. 
  • edited February 3
    (Temporary truce response)

    The silence of the fallen children loomed in the settlement. The settlement once full of life, now only littered with scattered playing and laughter. Soldiers sat in all manner of areas drinking silently and sharpening their weapons while others hauled corpses for burial. 

    Alum sat in his confines, two soldiers in his meeting chambers, catering to his whims in hopes of filling the void Dykus left, but trustworthy as they may be, none can ever come close. Only a few minutes ago, Alum had to break the news to his fallen comrade's son, that not only did his father die, but he was also unable to bring him a proper burial. Shortly there after he had to galvanize his citizens.

    He lifts his hand and without a word, a glass of dark red wine, aged in one of the magically regrowing woods of these lands is poured into his glass. Flavors of tang and bittersweet fill his tongue, as memories of something, something terrible...

    - Alum: "He was in pain you know..." Alum says as a whirlpool of transparent red spins in his twirling bronze glass.

    - Kal: "If I may inquire"

    - Alum: "Dykus, dykus was in pain. When I pulled the gauntlet and..." Before Alum can finish, a soldier budges through the chambers with a creature following behind him.

    - Tahar: "Mongrel, does thee not know how to knock. Who invited thou to master Alum's chamber?"

    Alum: "State your business" Alum says interrupting 

    Soldier: "Forgive me thane" she bows "It would appear that that foul cult sent a creature here"

    Alum: "AND YOU ALLOWED IT WITHIN MY CHAMBERS"

    Soldier: "Bu....forgive me, I shall dispose of it"

    Alum gets up and draws his sword and begins walking towards the soldier. He reaches forward, passing his hand behind her bowed head and grabbing the creature by its neck. He is about to slash it when a he spots a letter strapped to it. He takes the letter and reads it, he then promptly tears it and heads back to his throne dismissing the soldier.

    Later on that day, the creature is released with a message strapped to it, set to be delivered to the true gods.

    Do not mistake our truce for kindness, and do not mistake our complacency for weakness. For now my hate burns deeper for these barbarians that dishonored the corpses of my fallen. I will accept a temporary truce, until the vermin are dealt with. I am surprised that I have found even greater savages than you, but the enemy of my enemy is a simply a more tolerable nuisance

    - Signed Alum Zalgofar 

    @KorandAngels
  • Thumbs up emoji
  • @SpellPiper2213 Yeah, I got it. No big deal XD

    For now, we're just waiting on @Nomp and @Aggroman15's entries for the second challenge and we'll be good to go!
  • edited February 6
    Disturbing times had befallen Valenos. Mysterious disappearances had plagued the populace, as they had in both the Seven Leagues and Antaias, without any sign of where they had gone to or what had taken them. The council room sat in silence under the weight of this fact, and of the fact that they had gotten nowhere with the investigations. The Fern-Clan spies had tried their hand at picking up the trail, but whatever took the people was not giving them much to go off.

    Finally, Shadowed Boughs spoke. "I am sorry for my failure, Grand Elder. If there was any way for my agents to discover the location of our lost people, they would be safely home by now. I don't see what else we can do."

    "I do not blame you," Splinter said solemnly, "I know you have been working tirelessly to bring the lost home. However, seeing as you have not had success, we need other ideas."

    From the back of the room, at a shadowed corner of the table, a figure leaned forward. Old and gnarled, Phosi was the progenitor of the Root-Clan, a clan of mystics and practitioners of druidic magic. "Perhaps you will not like this suggestion, my lord, but there is one person who may be able to help."

    Splinter's expression became even darker. "No. I am not bringing her into this."

    Phosi shook his head. "I know you dislike her, Grand Elder, but nobody can speak to the land like she can. If anyone can find our missing people, it's her."

    "She was exiled a long time ago. What makes you think she'd be willing to help?"

    "She opposed you, but she's not a monster, Splinter. At least pay her a visit. She may be more cooperative than you think." Phosi said, leaning back into the shadows, leaving Splinter to debate his options.

    ------

    Against his better judgement, Splinter found himself on the outskirts of the Valenos territory. He knew it woudn't be hard to find her, she was rather brash and had never been good at hiding herself. It was simply a matter of convincing her.

    Soon enough, Splinter was standing in front of a huge, intricate alcove made from the branches of nearby inanimate trees. Regardless of his opinions on the artist, Splinter had to admit it was quite beautiful.

    Suddenly, Splinter heard a voice from behind him. "Did you just come here to admire my handiwork, or did you finally realize that the Forest was falling apart without me?"

    Splinter turned around, and saw a face that he knew all too well. "Believe me, Peaceful Gardens, I wouldn't be here if I had any other options. But, as much as I hate to admit it, I do need your help. People are disappearing, and your land-speaking skills might be our only shot at finding them."

    "Look, I don't want to help you. I'd love nothing more to see the Spires burned to the ground. But ordinary people are going missing, and it's obvious you're too incompetent to solve the problem without my help." Peaceful Gardens said. "However, I'm not going to help you without getting something in return. You know the conditions. All you've got to do is say the word, and we can get tracking."

    Splinter sighed. When Peaceful Gardens had been exiled, she had declared her terms for if her abilities were ever needed. "Are you sure there's nothing else you want? Whatever it is, I can get it for you."

    "Nope. I'm the best at this, and we both know it. If you want my help finding these people, you're going to have to give me back my spot on the council."

    "Fine. But only because I have no other choice."

    Peaceful Gardens smiled, and stepped forward, hand outstretched. Splinter reluctantly shook it.

    "Good," Peaceful Gardens said cheerfully, "Let's get started!"

    ------

    Peaceful Gardens Landspeaker
    Peaceful Gardens was born into the Root-Clan, and showed great promise as a mystic. However, her name soon proved to be quite ironic, as her rebellious and aggressive nature led her to leave her clan in favor of joining the warriors of Briar-Clan. As opposed to other clans, Briar-Clan Eldership is won through combat after the death of the previous Elder. Talented in both melee combat and the druidic arts, Peaceful Gardens was able to rise to the top, and become the Briar-Clan Elder. However, this was short-lived. Soon after she reached the position, Splinter was released, and took over the forest. Splinter and Peaceful Gardens quickly found themselves at odds, with each having very different ideas about the direction that the forest should go in. As a result of this, Peaceful Gardens was demoted from Eldership, and went into seclusion to better connect with the land. But she made sure that Splinter knew that, when his grand ideas came crashing down, he knew where to find her.

    Stories of the Land
    The Valenos Forest is going to investigate the disappearances by making use of Peaceful Gardens' exceptional landspeaking, aided by some lesser druids from the Root-Clan. Landspeaking is when a treefolk communes with the land and the inanimate trees around them, drawing in information about what the forest has seen and heard. Getting precise information from the many decades, sometimes centuries that the land and trees have seen is quite difficult, but is something Peaceful Gardens is very good at. Utilizing this technique, she can track the land that the culprits traveled over, hopefully leading the Forest to their missing citizens.

    Sorry to keep you waiting so long, but it slipped my mind for a while and then it took a bit to come up with a good solution. Also, I have updated Woodland Alliance from my previous post so that it keeps the same idea, but is hopefully far less confusing/broken.
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