The courtier summons your attention, “AHEM!! We will now enter the throne room. Remember your instructions.” The large wooden doors open of their own accord. The courtier ushers each of you in front of him and then he follows you into the throne room.
The throne room is large and spacious. It could easily hold 100 people and leave room for larger creatures. A red carpet runs down the center of the room from the door to the foot of the raised throne. The King sits upon his throne looking calm, but worried as you enter the throne room. He has high cheekbones with a long face. As he turns his head to scan over each of your group, you all notice that his ears have a slight point to them. To his left stands a Captain of the Roaming Guard. He is a human of average stature, his hair is graying at the temples, and his skin is aged and bronzed from many long hours in the sun. The courtier that was with you in the antechamber passes you and stands to the King’s right. After you have all reached the throne, the King rises and addresses each of you.
“Welcome Atherin. Welcome Felix. Welcome Jas Norn. Welcome Sturgok. Welcome Strennr Ozemu. Welcome Iriades Mon’d’atall. Everything that is spoken now shall not be repeated in the presents of anyone not here today.
I am placing the very future of Warrington in your hands. It is a kingdom built on trade. Our most key resources are the minerals mined from the mountains beyond Wistendale. It is what makes it possible for us to exist. The only nation that relies more on these minerals would be Wistendale itself.
Nothing has been heard from Wistendale for 2 months. The Roaming Guard reports that the last caravan sent to Wistendale passed their outpost on schedule. Since then nothing returned up the road. The only change reported has been an orange glow that can be seen on the horizon at night. Each returning patrol for the past month has reported this glow, and it has been growing brighter as of late.
You will travel with a Roaming Guard patrol as far as the outpost. This is a one-week journey for most trade caravans. Our patrols usually make it in 3 days, but we expect it to take 4 days, since not all hear are accomplished riders. From the outpost to Wistendale is normally another week for trade caravans. I do not know how long it will take you to travel that distance.
You leave at dusk tonight. Captain Edon is the commander of the Roaming Guard patrol that will accompany you. They will remain at the outpost for their assigned week, then return to Warrington. They will be replaced by Captain Manning’s patrol. If none of you return with Manning’s patrol, I will consider you expedition a loss and complete failure.
That must not happen. We need to know what is happening in or what happened to Wistendale. Captain Edon and Warren will remain to answer any questions you have. May Heironeous guide your blades and return all of you to us whole.”
With that the King rises and exits through a hidden door to the right of the throne. As the door opens you notice two older humans are waiting and join the King as he exits. The courtier, he is obviously Warren, steps forward, “Captain Edon’s patrol leaves in 2 hours. You will be provided mounts, if you do not have them, as well as supplies and pack animals. Do you have any specific questions?”
Captain Edon has remained silent, but has been eying each of you during the King and Warren’s statements. The look on his face appears to be one of disappointment.