A Grove Offense

The sketches Isabelle made seem to be degrading. She definitely needs to go back to the source to shore up the details. Of course she won’t let anyone know that as she strongly suggests they go back for… reasons. The group doesn’t seem to be on board. She tells Jericho in confidence what the issue is. (3 tokens to anyone who ends up using it.)

The psychic records differ in 3 ways: the recording, what someone says they remember, what is stored in their brain. Amount, number, and distribution of guards is different in every one. And all of then change when reviewed again. Even details in undershadow have changed inside the castle border.

The observatory/rainbow bridge device explodes and shakes all the ground all the way to Amber. The group goes to see what happened. A black ball of energy is right beside the grove of the Unicorn. Lowen finds that this is being channeled from somewhere else and is growing larger and larger. To try and stop it, Lowen siphons off energy until he’s about to burst. Fiona grabs everyone around to help contain it. She asks Jericho, Silas, and Lowen to go to the dark pattern, which may lead back to the Emperor. Isabelle offers the trump sketch to Jericho.

When he tries to use the trump, it doesn’t work and it feels a little off. Isabelle takes the card to fix it, disregarding his concern. It starts to crumble, so she affixes a blank card to the back to keep it together better. Purely aesthetic, but it makes her happy. The group joins hands as she pushes contact. A mist surrounds her and her eyes turn white as she goes through.

Broken vstf… svyibsyr dilbrt dun nlsvk vloufd Esdras for… Silas sees the silver sun and looks to the undershadow… which is not there??? A great oppressive weight is felt all around. Silas commands, “Show yourself!” It feels a little Abyssal, but there’s no energy so much as a resonance. On the horizon someone approaches. It does not look like the emperor. A little boy in a double-breasted suit with a cane.

“What are you?” The boy asks. Silas explains who he is and asks the boy’s name. It is some bizarre unspeakable name and he turns out to be Alice’s brother. Jericho says her name and the boy finds it strange that she doesn’t appear upon mention of her name. Is he imprisioned? He suggests that he is here as a response to their presence. He thinks he is dead?! He doesn’t think he’s real. Oh my this is strange.

“You’re born of the first ones,” the boy explains to Lowen. That’s how he was able to put a piece of himself in Lowen when he died to save him. The boy gets frustrated and confused, and suddenly there is a sharp pain in everyone’s heads. As he talks, his eyes turn black with stars. He is starting to remember a plan for the Great Unmaking, but he died before it could be completed. It seems he can’t be hurt.

Jericho’s blood… “Cil’dea” - child of a child of a child? … Angry boy shouts and a black blast expels the group. They fall out and into the chamber in which Brigid is floating and singing. Isabelle recognizes that Brigid is definitely causing the problem by the Grove of the Unicorn. Lowen touches Brigid to show her what is happening. Silas opens the undershadow as an escape, but monsters rush to get through. He holds is open a small amount to stop them. Isabelle grabs Natasha to see if her sword could help sever the connection to Brigid.

Bree is assuming the form of someone else to do a task. She doesn’t want to draw down the ire of Amber on someone else, but she realizes she could just use the body/form of someone she doesn’t like.

Brigid sees a vision of Lowen, but she’s skeptical. He asks her to say, “Show me what’s real” and mean it. She does so and suddenly a warm feeling comes over her and she sees what is really going on, although she can’t stop singing. Isabelle manages to break the Emperor’s spell on Natasha (though he becomes aware of this fact) and she wields her sword to break the last of the connection on Brigid.

Alice appears as Jericho summons her. She explains that her brother is at the cusp of death and that he can’t be saved. He could be pushed the other way, but it would mean losing the source of power, she laments. The well walls part and the Emperor starts to emerge. Silas brings forth his minions of murder hornets for a distraction while the group escapes through Brigid’s icon to her dad.

At the last moment before Brigid goes through, a sword goes through her chest. Impaled Goth Brigid falls to the floor in front of her father. The last thing she hears is “What the f—!” before she passes out. Finnegan picks up the sword and asks, “Whose sword is this???” He explains that it belongs to Lady Vala.

Fiona walks up and contains it and there’s a smoking crater where it used to be. Brigid shares an icon of Fiona for them to reach out to her and find out what happened. She answers the icon and says they’re getting a handle on things. She brings the group through and then called Brigid directly. “Remember when you dad and I told you not to trust anyone??” Fiona scolds.

Isabelle helps restore the Grove and uses The Green to help speed up the process.

Bree explains that the equipment really needs to be upgraded before they try again.

Silas catches up with Corwin and Eric but he can’t reach Benedict. Even Dworkin (yes, he appeared) doesn’t know where he is.

Llylandre, Brand (Bree), Isabelle. Clarissa lied. Brand (Bree) is a merge of herself and Llylandre(original), and this Llylandre is a backup/new original. Llylandre is pissed at the whole situation and feels betrayed by Clarissa. They part ways in a somewhat amicable way. Brand put up a smokescreen to help delay others finding out that Llylandre is gone. Isabelle is sworn to secrecy and remains dedicated to helping Brand.

Silas goes off into undershadow to recruit an army of undershadow denizens for what he expects is a coming war.

Jericho, Alice, Lowen. They discuss what it would take to end the emperor. Alice says that someone who controls things and would be willing to touch the chaos would be needed, and suggests Gerhardt. She also remarks amazement at Lowen still being able to walk. Jericho needs to go with Alice to open a way for the source to go somewhere else. Somewhere weak. What if Natasha can make the weak spot?

Dworkin agrees to help Gerhardt recover his true name. They will meet at the Primal Pattern.

Brand struggles to reconcile why he doesn’t feel the same way about Llylandre’s memories as she does. She trumps Clarissa, who brings her through to talk. Clarissa says that Llylandre’s interpretation of her memories may not be accurate and are likely influenced by her emotions. Clarissa swears she did exactly what Brand requested.

Caine runs psy-ops to the general populace to keep the populace calm.

Oberon returns and gives a speech at the grove.

Dworkin and Gerhardt meets at the primal pattern. Dworkin directs Gerhardt to walk the primal pattern, and says he will meet him at the center. He walks it, and is taxed. Dworkin watches carefully as he does so. Dworkin then appears beside him at the center, and performs a ritual and says he has his true name. Dworkin looks worried. "I was really hoping I was wrong…" he begins. ||||message redacted|||| Gerhardt secret spoilers.

Fate Points: I-6, J-5, S-5, L-5, N-4

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