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The Morning of 5th April 812 Only a day had passed since the group had split to tackle their various objectives. Owen had joined Malaphar to eliminate cultists controlling the region, Cass had rescued Esclabor whilst Angus had managed to retrieve their sea captain. Each task seemed so distinct, but eerily linked together through mentions of a wizard - and there was one wizard that everyone had become painfully aware of. The sun had been setting, there couldn't have been more than an hour left of daylight in the harsh land of Magonsaete. With so much information, much of which concerning, discussion had waited until the morning - giving all involved a chance to recover from their battles. Most of their injuries were rather superficial, even Esclabor only required minimal treatment. The presence of Malaphar hadn't aided things at all. Many had expressed their unease around him. However, with little explanation, the wizard had said he'd be absent for a few hours, leaving Owen's group to their own devices. Now joined by Baron Esclabor and Captain Haddock, they could finally begin to piece parts of the story together. As usual, the Reliants had found their own space to hold up, still feeling like outsiders to the whole host of nobility. The night was quiet, with so many battles in the area, it appeared the barbarian forces had been somewhat depleted. Not a single soul had been spotted or even heard as the hours progressed, the various people on watch having rather little to focus on. Morning had come quickly, and Malaphar was still gone. With no given time frame of his return, it left the group with decisions to make. The sun had just appeared over the horizon, the oranges and reds of the sunrise being replaced by an endless blue. It was difficult to believe that a massacre had occurred when they arrived. People had started to gather in the main meeting room, anxious to hear how Owen intended to proceed. All players may post!
[spoiler=The story so far] In the humble country of Wyke, Prince Owen was alerted by his father than a rogue noble known as Dettard was conspiring with the bandit nation of Magonsaete. The king being too sickly to travel himself, Owen was sent in his place, taking along Lionel and his other men. His younger sister, Cassandra, then invited herself along, aiding Owen in his journey. Joined by the "charming" rogue, Sidney, Owen learned of skulduggery, vowing to get to the bottom of the issue. Meanwhile, Lady Adeltrudis of Herman met with her father, and was introduced to Jean the Red, a Toulese noble. After being attacked at their lakeside manor, she learned of Owen's quest, taking her brother, Graham, and their butler Jeeves. Joined by Niko and Doug, the group met up with Owen's and joined forces. Battling through the forest, Lionel's men arrived to assist Owen, following them to Dettard's castle. Once there, Dettard claimed that he was Owen's half brother, but was bested in a duel by the noble prince. Inside was the monstrous Baleros, a man-beast with strength beyond belief. With some quick thinking from Angus of Kearney, Baleros was eventually slain. However, part of the group had remained outside, with two of Lionel's men falling to enemy forces. Jeeves the butler also succumbed to his failing health, passing away shortly after the battle. With heavy hearts, Owen and friends return to Hull, the capital, looking to find some answers. The battle at Dettard's manor had been a cruel one. Despite besting the treacherous cur, Owen's group had received their own losses. Still, there were so many things left unexplained, so many questions behind Dettard's actions. However, those had waited until they returned to the capital, where they were quickly met by the King's men. Dettard was detained, taken away to the dungeon, whilst Owen, Cassandra, his vassals and Sidney were summoned before the King. Adele, her brother, Jean and her mercenaries were taken aside to speak to Duke Herman, who had rushed to the capital after Adele had not returned. Castle Gaffney's throne room It was very much a surprise to see the king seated on his throne, Owen hadn't seen him out of bed for several weeks now. Dressed formally, with his crown on his head, Oswald looked up Owen and his men, all stood at the base of his throne's steps. Smiling, Oswald let out a sigh of relief. Oddly enough, there were no guards in the throne room, only the king's own retainers had remained. "My dear children, I am relieved to see you return in good health, and proud that have succeeded in halting Dettard's foolish acts." he announced, his voice tainted with a hint of sickness. "Our kingdom will remain strong with you as its protectors, I could not be prouder as a king, nor could I be prouder as a father. Cassandra, you may have gone against my wishes, but I had received confirmation you were unharmed. I care for you dearly, please take that in mind next time you choose to act." Oswald coughed a few times, a trickle of blood visible on his lip. Wiping his mouth quickly, he looked upon Owen's men. "Noble vassals, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for supporting Prince Owen through the challenges he faced. You will be rewarded in due time, you have achieved a great deal for those of your age." Oswald stopped, looking at Sidney for a moment, as if he were choosing his words carefully. "Ah yes, you must be the other woman. I thank you dearly for your own efforts, you do the crown a great service." Owen's party are free to respond! Remember, you're talking in front of the King! Meeting with Duke Herman Having taken one of the smaller meeting rooms, Duke Herman had arranged to meet his own children in private. It was a far less formal setting than the throne room, Tobias had always preferred a more personal approach with his children. "Adeltrudis, Graham, Sir Jean." he spoke, watching as the others entered the room. "All of you, please do take a seat. You may not be of noble creed, but your assistance to my children is much appreciated. I feared that something had happened when you did not return after a few days... however, Jeeves had written to me multiple times, ensuring that I knew of your safety. I apologise, I knew of our King's task for Prince Owen but I feared you would put yourselves at risk if you knew of it." Tobias twirled his mustache, eyeing Niko and Doug. Doug's attire perplexed him, he wasn't entirely sure whether this were a rather uncharming young woman or a perverted young man. His manners were enough for him to shelf the thoughts for now, but he continued his speech. "I cannot say we are acquainted. I have been informed that you are both mercenaries, and that of fine quality. I am Duke Herman, father of Adeltrudis and Graham. Your service to my family is very much appreciated. If you were still looking for employment, I ask you to remain as our guests for a while, and for us to discuss once you have had time to rest." Adele and her group are free to respond!