Leaving the confines of the strange hall, the Free People carry on their way. The Armies of Afacia cannot be seen as they had continued marching throughout the night. A light mist rolls in, gently creeping along the paths behind them and obscuring the vision in front of them. The Free People have been taught to fear the mist for so long now, they cannot help but feel tense.
As they move on, the magic users among them again feel nauseous and for a moment, they see a flash of green when they blink. Eyes open, it is gone, they blink again and it is not there. Confusion spreads a little, as knowing glances are cast to one another. Only once this happens, and even if some try to manifest this, they cannot see that haunting green light again.
Hours go by, and stars glitter above the Free People’s heads. The night is cold and the mist lingers in the distance. It is not thick and impenetrable, like the mists of the Queen, but nor do these mists feel natural. A ringing softly begins to build, the noise emanating before them and quickly reaches a full toll. Suddenly Silence.
A voice can be heard from the mist itself as three silhouettes begin to form far enough away to be at the edge of vision. The figure in the centre, robed in white, with five silver lines covering its face.
You have in your possession, that which belongs to the mists and our Queen, this is your notice to return it. For those of you who may not be enlightened, a bounty has been placed by the Mist Queen herself for the return of the Soul of Arkhan, the Shard of Degan.
If your actions result in the soul of her King being returned to her, you may claim one of the following prizes:
- A City seated within your own lands will not be touched by her armies for 100 years.
- A personalised item made within the great forges of the mists, crafted by the Iron Warlord.
- An audience with the Queen directly, during which you will not be harmed, unless you threaten violence yourself.
- 100 gold pieces
- Revered position within her forces and the opportunity to join us.
Or if there is something else your heart desires, she is fair and is willing to discuss further terms.
Release the shard and let it come home. Once you have done this, come to the edge of the mists and call for Number Five and I shall listen. This bounty has been shared at every border to our lands. Arkhan will be recovered, but you can be the one to prosper.”
The moment the final word is uttered, a gust of wind disperses the silhouettes and the cloying mists rush through the ranks of the free people. As the dew touches each and every being, a fog begins to form in their mind. It's harder to remember the actions taken over the years. All are a little slower to recall names of places and people, or even the order in which the free people marched against the mists.
The waning crescent moon smiles above their heads, as it is again allowed to illuminate the rocky mountain path before them. Finally they arrive at the Nosquen War camp. As they enter, weary travellers are greeted with tables of food and drink, and are met with a warm familiarity, as soldiers they have never met before help assemble their caravans. Smiling and laughing, meeting the Nosquen people is refreshing after so long at war.
Despite this, talk of the bounty quickly begins to spread. Curious eyes regard the Free People, as the ‘theoretical’ question is muttered “ What would you ask for?”
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