Halloween 2015

The great Eric vs. Random duel is on! Well, in two days time.

In the interim:

  • Elodie is sent by Random to retrieve a pair of dueling sabers from his apartment in Texorami. At his suggestion, she sends Natasha ahead as a distraction. Natasha visits some of Random's old haunts until she is set up by a group of toughs. Elodie uses a Trump of the apartment and retreives the sabers with no trouble. The sky darkens suddenly outside the apartment, but she figures it's just a cloud passing over the sun. From a distance, Natasha sees a blimp fire a missile into Random's apartment. As Elodie is Trumping away, she sees the apartment exploding behind her. Elodie Trumps Natasha and pulls her back to Amber.
  • Silas is told by Random to see to the security of the duel. He also expected Corwin to have arrived. Silas tries to Trump Corwin but encounters weird resistance. So he Trumps
  • Isabelle, who is at a rave on Erehwon with Bleys when she receives the call. She investigates and eventually pushes through and finds a trapped Corwin. Observing this via mental link is
  • Jericho, who trumps over to Corwin after Isabelle is (barely) able to overcome the defenses. Corwin informs him that his captor is Dara, of Chaos.
  • Gerhardt goes to the library seeking an ancient treaty between Amber and the Lords of Gossamer. He spends some time in the Great Library of Amber, and gathers various information about the treaty but is still pursuing the treaty itself.

Jericho attempts to free Corwin but he is fused to the wall. While Jericho races to free him, he gets a Trump call from Eric, who offers Jericho a dagger when he sees Corwin at Jericho's mercy. "Not like this," Jericho says. Eric promises to send help but the contact is broken. Jericho manages to free one of Corwin's hands before he is swarmed by beings similar to those from Patternfall. Jericho defends both of them while Corwin continues trying to free himself. He succeeds just before Jericho would have cut off one of his hands to get him free faster. They both Trump to Isabelle.

Meanwhile, while seeing to the security of the castle, Silas discovers that servants are vanishing from the castle at an alarming rate. Silas institutes a buddy system to no avail, and finally disguises himself as a servant and is kidnapped by a shadowy creature. He passes out and awakens in a cage, in an area with the missing servants similarly caged. A guard watches the area, and Silas gets his attention. The guard stabs the pinned Silas in the foot then catches his blood in a shot glass and drinks it. He then immediately proceeds to use a comm device. Silas opens a portal to undershadow and finds the cage exists there as well, and also finds creatures that work with the guard. He has to retreat back to normal shadow. The guard summons the Red King, who also feeds on some of Silas' blood and finds it very satisfying.

Natasha encounters Rhanda, who asks why all the mirrors have been removed from the castle, implying that these let her people see to the safety of Amber. Her people are very reclusive and prefer to work unseen, but the lack of mirrors blinds them. Natasha has all the mirrors that were rounded up restored to their original locations.

At the rave, Isabelle talks with Bleys and finds he really didn't want to be king so much as he didn't want any of the other candidates to be king. With Random and Eric back on the scene he is quite content to let them fight over it.

Gerhardt learns that Elodie is in charge of a secret archive within the library and asks for access. She tells him he will need Random's permission, which he obtains. The two of them go to the Secret Library and locate the treaty between Amber and the Gossamer Lords. The treaty seems intended to limit interaction between the two sides and forbids a member of one side claiming territory in the other's space. While studying it, there is a knocking on the concealed entrance. Elodie opens it and sees an unfamiliar blonde woman. Gerhardt introduces her to Celeste, aka, The Unicorn. Elodie is overwhelmed with awe and remains so for a long time.

Celeste leads them to the device in her grove. She makes a number of adjustments to the device, saying that it will protect Amber against attack from undershadow. She gives the Jewel of Judgement to Elodie for safe keeping until the succession crisis is resolved. She uses the device to make a rainbow bridge, which transports her and Elodie to a beautiful white castle where they talk further. Celeste still supports Random as her choice for king, and says she will remove Eric's death curse if he will renounce his claim to the throne. Before Celeste sends Elodie back to Amber, Elodie encounters The Golden Child, but isn't introduced. Celeste is very displeased to see him and orders him away.

Gerhardt reports to Random about finding the treaty, undershadow changing, and seeing the Jewel of Judgement. Elodie hides the Jewel in a compartment in the library that Celeste told her about, then joins them. She admits to Random that she knows where the Jewel is, but that the Unicorn wasn't ready for him to have it yet. Random isn't pleased, but agrees, if Elodie will give it to him if he calls for it. Elodie says she trusts him, and that if he calls for it, it's needed.

After escaping the vampires via trump, Silas attempts to use undershadow in Amber, normally a difficult though not impossible task, and finds he is unable to do so. He journeys away from Amber, checking periodically on whether he can. He finally is able to do so, and then in undershadow attempts to walk back towards Amber, and finds it tough going, as there is an upward slope that increases the closer he gets until he is at a virtual sheer cliff that he cannot ascend. He talks to a being in undershadow who is puzzled by this development, saying it is very recent. When Silas returns to shadow he receives a call from Caine, who angrily asks Silas what he did, implying he has something to do with this new development (Caine is also versed in undershadow). Caine implies that Amber's intelligence service is crippled by the inability to now use undershadow in Amber. He also warns Silas to have nothing to do with Rhanda and contact him immediately if he sees her, then leaves.

Elodie tells Eric and Jericho about the Unicorn's offer to save Eric's life. Eric isn't willing to take her up on the offer yet, if ever.

With the mirrors restored, Rhanda's people bring most of the surviving kidnapped servants back to Amber.

Jericho investigates the proceedings of the duel and discovers as part of ensuring there will be no cheating that all magic will be removed from the combatants prior to the start. Knowing Eric had been shot by a cursed arrow that is slowly killing him and whose progress has been slowed by magic, he checks and finds that this will likely have the effect of greatly reducing if not outright killing Eric. He discusses this with Eric and Benedict, who postpones the duel until such time as Eric is cured.

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