Author’s Note: [WARNING: Spoilers ahead] Consider this story exactly as canon as you feel that it is. There were a lot of people on this mission, so we apologize if your character doesn’t show up by name or is mentioned only in passing. This does not accurately reflect your character’s contribution, and likely they performed great and important deeds that the eye of this particular narrator simply did not catch. If your character appears and does or says something you feel they wouldn’t do, you can discard this as “based on a true story” and leave it at that. If you like what’s written here, or like elements of it, feel free to say that it’s what really happened, but if your canon involves other PCs please make sure that they agree on what happened as well before bringing it up in game. If your character is portrayed killing a human, you may choose to opt in to taking depravity for the act if you wish, but Staff does not consider it mandatory that you do so. What is considered canon is this: Cyril Coldblood dueled Havris Ravenscarred and won, Alonso Sempere and Moira Sorendottir worked together to turn the tide of battle with a clever solution to a difficult problem, Naressa subdued and captured Yazma, and Roach picked up, and at the start of Event 6 will presently hold, the artifact Blightbane. These characters were chosen by random die roll from the pool of characters that contributed their Org chits to this endeavor. An item card detailing Blightbane’s abilities will be provided to Roach’s player at check in.

Dusk fell silently on the fetid, rotting corpse of the swamp, the lack of any buzzing bugs or birdsong so potent and longstanding that they were not even missed by those that lived there. This was not a place for animals and men. This was a den of monsters.

Havris Ravenscarred glared through the brush at the growing darkness, the cat’s eye scar carved into his forehead long ago starting to glow faintly in the moonlight, silver tingeing his sight as color drained away. His blessings from the Haugway did not end with the panther’s sight, but the comforting weight of Blightbane on his belt, the combination of which made him an excellent slayer of the Blight. His elders had always told him he was filled with wildness, but they had misunderstood. He was filled with rage, Vecatra’s rage, and that rage had curdled in him, forging him not into a warrior but into a terror.

The cursory glance at the mire did not raise any suspicion from him as light fled the sky, and he turned his moonlit eyes back upon his camp, his people. They were nineteen strong, warriors who had seen the vile corruptions of the Blight first hand and decided to heed the call when It sensed their rising hatred. He had found them, one by one, drawn to them in dreams and then by the knots of fate, and slowly assembled his band of malcontents.

They’d spent a great deal of time cultivating the Haugway’s gifts here, the vilebloom fungus spreading out from where Havris had scattered the first few spores, now covering miles of territory. The poisonous puffballs could sense friend and foe, and would not burst upon his people, but outsiders would be kept at bay once they learned the price of their trespass. At least they had been so far.

“Quiet night,” Havris growled in Tungran, loud enough for Yazma to hear. The woman’s hair was in constant knots and tangles which bobbed as she nodded her head over and over. She heard the call a different way than he did, the spores flowed in her veins and she could speak to the growths when they chose to listen. She rarely talked to him, or to anyone that wasn’t rotting really, and when she did spores floated from her lips like a cloud of smoke.

“The blooms are angry,” she said, her toes curling in the mycelium that spread like a patchy, pastel pink carpet across the camp. “Something out there’s disturbed them, but they’ve no eyes to tell us what they see.”

Havris snarled and turned his gaze northward again, the last light of evening dimming to nothing until only the moon hung above to light the blackness. His silversight blessing outlined every bush, every fern and the trunk of every tree, but saw no invaders in the wood. He grunted.

“We’ll keep an eye out. But tell them-”

Flame bloomed in the east, a lone lantern lighting a cloak of many colors as Alonso Sempere stepped out of the dark, blade in hand and flanked by yet more warriors. His skill at disarming traps and surviving airborne poisons had made him the natural choice for clearing the way to the camp for one of the assault’s twin prongs, and he’d managed to get his warparty in position right before the fungus could alert the cultists to their presence.

Havris grinned maliciously, his silversight picking out the other warriors behind the colorful man, still shrouded in the dark.

“You never should have come here, Blight,” he hissed, hand falling to the sword at his hip as his cultists pulled free their own weapons. “Your corpses will feed the dying world, and bring it closer to its flowering. To arms!”

The Haugway cultists surged forward, as did the crew of the Opportunity, blades raised high as they clashed with curses and the flash of iron blades.

“What did he say?” called out Cicero, struggling to hold off two prowling cultists, scar of the cat’s eye carved into each forehead. “I don’t speak forgotten tongue”

“First of all, it’s called Tungran,” yelled Moira, staff spinning this way and that, cracking limbs and parrying blows with ease. “But he said we shouldn’t have come, something about feeding our corpses to the world. I don’t know, he has a weird accent!”

“It doesn’t matter one shit what he said!” called Captain Naressa, grinning madly in the lantern light. “‘Cause we’re gonna kill him, and his words will be dead!”

Havris watched as the motley crew clashed with his men, outnumbered more than two to one. At first he’d been startled, agitated and hungry for battle, but as he watched his men slowly surround them he knew there was no need. The invaders, though full of zeal, were slowly losing their fire as cuts and bruises built up on limbs, spattering the hungry ground with sweet sanguine. His hand fell from Blightbane’s hilt, a little disappointed that this diversion was being so neatly and quickly tied up.

“Should I release the swarm? Or perhaps the Flayed Man?” murmured Yazma as she came up behind him, watching the fight impassively.

“No need,” he said, crossing his arms, though he looked over his shoulder at the creature they kept in a cage of hardened willow branches. The man’s skinless face was pressed against the bars, sniffing ravenously at the air and occasionally licking it as if trying to catch droplets of rain on his tongue. His veins, which often hung limply by his sides, now snaked out and reached in the direction of the combat, hungry for blood.

“He would be very difficult to capture again, anyway. And the swarm’s birth would weaken you, doubtless.”

“This is not all,” said Yazma, motioning at the valiant fight of the crew as the first of them fell beneath the blades of the cult, “that the night has for us. Something else lurks in the dark, just as large. The vileblooms are spitting.”

“Is that so?” Havris stroked his bearded chin. “Then make yourself ready, and prepare to unleash him. Tonight may not be so boring after all…”



In the thick of the fight, the crew of the Opportunity was swiftly losing hope. They were giving as good as they were getting, and for every one of them that fell with a slash across the chest they brought low one of the Haugway’s men but, outnumbered as they were, that was a losing proposition.

“Hold fast!” bellowed Captain Naressa, trying to hold morale. “We just need to hold the line!”

“How long?!” cried Isabella, sword locked against two crossed hatchets perilously close to cutting into her cheeks.

“Just! Until!” Each word was punctuated with a crashing arc of her own sword.

“Cyril! Gets! Here!”




The plan was supposed to go this way. Naressa and Cyril would each lead a band of warriors, splitting from each other more than a mile to the north of the camp and moving to the east and west in a pincer maneuver, meeting in the middle. Once arrived, Alonso would light the lantern, acting as both a distraction for the cultists and a signal to Cyril’s band that they were in position. This would get the cultists to turn their backs and allow Cyril’s warriors to swoop in for the flank, making excellent use of the distraction and evening out the numbers a bit.

What they hadn’t counted on was the vileblooms, those nasty fungal traps that were scattered all throughout the bog and puffed a plume of blinding, irritating spores that seemed to drain away one’s energy like an hour of hard labor for each breath. In the Opportunity crew, Lucius had managed to spot and identify the dangerous fungus thanks to his skill with herbalism, and Alonso’s nimble fingers had managed to disarm any that they found. Cyril’s team had no such advantage, and while the vileblooms quickly made themselves known to be dangerous, the only engineer on the team was Markas Covington who, while very skilled in most other fields of engineering, knew little about trapmaking and less about disarming them.

“Where in the blazes are we?” complained Roach in her distinctive drawl, rubbing her burning eyes for what felt like the hundredth time, letting out little coughs as she waved a mosquito away. “Are we even going the right way?”

“Shush,” hissed Snack, who had somewhat given up on clearing the spores and simply blinked rapidly, tears flowing from irritated eyes without any emotion behind the wetness.

“Nearly there,” growled Tristan, stifling yet another sneeze. He’d managed to avoid getting sprayed in the eyes, but had caught a blast to the sinuses instead, and it felt like someone had a pepper grinder up near his brain. “We just need to look for the lantern.”

“Easy for you to say,” muttered Ameera, who had been completely blinded by the stuff and had only avoided getting lost by holding onto Markas’ coattails.

Blind and stumbling in the dark, sloshing through the leech infested bog, the band of warriors heard the sounds of combat before they saw any light.

“Shit,” spat Cyril, drawing their blades. “Come on! Follow that sound!”



The warriors back at the camp were hard pressed. Naressa had caught an axe to the crook of her shoulder and neck, and even now was drinking a Healer’s Balm potion as Antonia finished tightening her bandages so she could get back in the fight. Salazar was whispering his last rites as Isabella struggled to bandage him, Moira fighting furiously over them to keep them unharried.

The cultists showed little and less care for their own fallen, stepping over their fellows even before they breathed their last. Their blades shone like their grins, unrelenting in the moonlight, silver and red shining on their rusty blades as the blood caught the light. They’d have the crew of the Opportunity surrounded in moments, their familiarity with the terrain and their numbers slowly breaking down the Heshan crew until none would remain.

Lucius helped the Captain to her feet, stepping back as the potion flowed through her veins and shook off the last vestiges of pain from her wounds.

“They won’t be here in time,” he hissed under his breath, showing no fear but bravely facing the dark realities before them. “If we stay and fight, we die here.”

“Then we fight to the last man!” Naressa replied, her lungs full of vicious courage. “If we die here, we die together, and can regroup come the dawn. To arms, everyone!”

Their morale, though strong, had begun to flag, and a cry that an hour ago might have been met with a mighty war cry was instead met with grumbles of assent and grim determination. As the cultists closed in they raised their blades and prepared for the worst.


Looks of confusion crossed the faces of the crew, for the order had not come from their captain but another strong voice beyond her, behind the line of cultists.



Havris whipped around, his mouth curling into a snarl as the party Yazma had warned of finally arrived. The cracking report of gunfire echoed through the bog, the flash of powder illuminating the swollen and weeping faces of the reinforcements plagued by the vilebloom’s poison. At their head stood Cyril Coldblood, wolf skull mask obscuring their features, knife in one hand and light spear in the other. They rushed forward, and nearly half the cultists had to turn from their encirclement to face the new foe.

New vigor surged through the crewmen, and Isabella let out a whoop that set the whole group cheering as they too surged forward, pressing the cultists in from each side and pushing them towards the center of the camp.

Havris growled as his cultists dashed to defend their flank, eyes flicking to Yazma as she gave him a meaningful look. With a nod he gave his assent and she rushed to the cage, pulling a key from her withered bosom and batting away the seeking veins of the Flayed Man as she unlocked his cage.

“Seek the blood of the foe, Skinless One. Go, and claim it as your own!”

The witch flung open the cage with finality and the creature screamed in pain and fury, lunging and leaping over the heads of the cultists and landing in the middle of the war party. The warriors not already engaged with the cultists jumped back in surprise as the howling skinless man lashed out, his veins flying to their exposed skin and burrowing deep, starting to drain the blood from them as they pulled and hacked at the rubbery strands.

Despite their poisoning and the distraction of the released malefic in their midst, Havris was frustrated by the amount of resources he had to redirect to this new threat. Though they still outnumbered the attackers it was no longer by so great a margin, and the newcomers seemed to be more skilled warriors even with the vileblooms working on them.

He drew his blade, Blightbane, from its sheath, the blade of living fungus hardened to a pale razor’s edge and eyed the newcomer’s hungrily. Behind him, Yazma watched as the Heshan crewmen began to overwhelm the smaller force left to put them down, their spirits high with the arrival of their fellows. She turned to Havris.

“We must act now,” she said cooly, “Or the night will soon be lost.”


“Release the swarm,” he commanded, pointing his unholy blade at the masked leader of the reinforcements. “They will deal with the initial assailants. I will handle this one.”



Blades flashed and blood sprayed as the crewmen regained their footing, each cultist that fell causing them all to call out the number of the slain.

“Seven!” echoed out in a haphazard cheer as yet another fell face first in the mud, their own fallen being dragged back and patched up only to return to the fight. They’d begin stepping over the bodies, slowly pushing back the savage warriors and gaining ground, the cultists glancing nervously between each other as the tables began to turn.

Alonso winced as he rose from the back line, picking up his lantern once again and cradling his injured arm. He squinted past his fellows, past the line of Haugway’s chosen to an old woman standing alone. Her arms were raised up, the mycelium floor surging up her legs as though slowly absorbing her, and she seemed to be taking in a breath so great it snapped her ribs and caused her torso to swell beyond what a human should. His eyes widened in terror as she met his gaze, a mischievous twitch at the corner of her lip.

“Captain, look out!” he cried out with all the power his lungs could muster, but it was too late.

Tiny white bugs surged from her lips like a current through a sea cave, blasting across the backs of the warriors and onto the crewmen, and within moments jubilant cheers turned to screams of horror. The fungal mites bit and tore at exposed skin, each tiny nip injecting nasty venom into the Heshans’ veins. They moved like a unified mass, congealing and rolling with a hive’s intellect, devouring friend and foe alike in their hunger.



Cyril bared their teeth under the mask as the raven-haired champion of Haugway came on, the cat’s-eye scar glaring at them with its own silver light, as if it were reflecting the light of the stars. He swung the sword and it too flashed with moonlight, Cyril barely dodging out of the way as the living blade clipped their armor. They jabbed forth with their own spear, dropped as it was knocked aside and another cut passed overhead before lunging forward, knife at the ready. A grunt escaped their lips as their lunge was interrupted, Havris’ knee slamming into their gut and forcing them to stumble back, almost colliding with the line of warriors struggling to handle the skinless creature behind them.

“Your coming was foretold,” said Havris in grim Tungran, yellowed teeth gleaming in the moonlight as the sounds of battle raged all around. “My prophet spotted your men on the approach.”

“I don’t speak your tongue, dead man,” the werewolf growled in their native Caprindis, catching their breath and diving once more into the fight to prevent the cult leader’s advance that threatened to break the battle line. Three quick jabs with the spear in rapid succession forced him to take a step back, though no blows landed and Cyril only succeeded in regaining the ground they’d lost.

Havris glanced over his shoulder a moment and Cyril took that split second of distraction to press the advantage, spear lunging out and catching him through the palm of his off hand as the cultist threw up his arm to block the blow, then leveraging the strike to come down with the knife in a leaping overhead blow. Havris howled in pain and wrenched the spear out of their grasp, sending their arc off balance and their swing wide. They landed and tumbled into a roll, pulling a second blade from their boot as Havris bit down on the shaft of the spear, ripping it out from between his fingers with a growl of pain and sending it clattering behind him as he turned to face his foe. His lips curled in disgust as he adjusted his stance, his injured hand tight against his body but ready to lunge out again to take incoming blows if need be.

“Vicious, this one,” he muttered with a mad grin, blood staining his teeth. “Shame you’re on the wrong side. We could use one such as you, with a bit of fire in the belly.”

“Less nonsense words, more dying,” Cyril spat, rising as Havris crashed into them with a battlecry, strange blade gleaming unnaturally in the night.



Alonso stumbled back, heart pounding in his ears as he tried to think of some way to save his friends, his family, the crew of the Opportunity as their screams filled the air. Nearly everyone this far back wasn’t fit for fighting, they were healers and support, carrying supplies and tending wounds. They had nothing that could stand against the foe they’d come to fight, let alone an amorphis swarm of biting insects.

Finding no help among them he turned his attention back to the swarm, and saw a hand reaching out of it, reaching for salvation. Gathering his courage he surged forth, grasping the hand and with a mighty pull struggled to pull Moira free from the mass, coughing and covered in bites wherever skin was seen.

“Are you alright?” he asked, breathless as she shook the mites from her clothes and stepped out of the swarm’s range.

“Aye, better than they still stuck in the mass,” she spat, a few saliva-covered mites landing by Alonso’s feet. “We have to put the swarm down, or all is lost.”

“Well,” he laughed nervously, his voice strained. “Unless you have a really big boot, I don’t see a way we can squish them all. There’s just too many of them! But whatever we do, we need to do it fast.”

She blinked a few times, her eyes adjusting as she finished gathering her bearings. Her gaze landed on Alonso’s signal lantern, still glowing with firelight, and her brow furrowed with determination.

“Well, I’ll be thrice-damned if I can’t think of a few ways to use Vecatra’s oldest gift to man. I’m going back in; when I say, you throw your lantern at me, got it?”

“What?!” Alonso gaped, but she was already striding away, knee deep in the white fungal mites already.

“I know you heard!” said Moira, back to him.

Alonso gulped and looked at his lantern, before looking back to Moira now chest deep in bugs as the screams started to fade one by one. He judged his throw and waited for his moment, watching as Moira sunk deeper into the mass, staff held up over her head.

“Now!” she called as the mites reached her chin, and Alonso threw. The lantern spun in a glowing arc as it tumbled end over end, blessedly missing the branches of the dead trees overhead as it hurtled toward the swarm like a falling star.

With a cry of effort Moira swung her staff and the air exploded in flame. Burning oil sprayed over the mass of mites and black smoke began to billow into the air. The hive recoiled and began to pull back, trying desperately to escape the blaze that coated it all around. Moving as one the swarm surged back towards the middle of the battlefield, revealing the fallen and taking the flame with them as the bugs screamed.

Alonso stared in amazement as Moira steadied herself with her staff, the medics surging around the pair to administer aid and identify the mites’ poison so antidotes could be administered. He shook his head in disbelief.

“It worked,” he muttered. “You saved them. Saved us all.”

Moira smiled, still breathing heavy as she shook herself free of the scorched remains of a few smoldering fungus mites.

“Sometimes, when the moon hits your eye just right,” she shrugged, leaving the rest unsaid. “Besides, the work’s not done yet. Come on now, Deep Strider. There’s blood to wade through yet.”



Blightblane flashed with silver moonlight as it phased through Cyril’s shoulderplate, turning partially transparent for half a moment before carving through the flesh of their upper arm. Cyril gasped out in pain, having been confident their armor could have sustained the blow, but the strange sword’s properties seemed beyond their ken. Havris drew the blade back, now stained with blood, and took up an offensive posture.

“The blood is mine! Blightbane will claim your soul, and repay the gift of the Haugway,” he announced in Tungran, Cyril shaking their head uncomprehending as their arm dropped, spear clattering to the floor.

“You talk too much,” they spat back, switching their stance so their offhand became their main, dagger glinting as they lunged forward with a roar. At that same moment the flare from the exploding lantern lit the whole encampment before sending it into blinding darkness.

Havris stumbled back, not having expected such an explosion as Cyril came on, rapidly lifting Blightbane to parry the nonstop flurry of cuts and stabs the werewolf seemed eager to give him. He parried once, twice, and on the third fumbled his grip as Cyril punched him in the knuckles of his swordhand. Blightbane flashed and carved a gash along Cyril’s mask before flying out of Havris’ grip and out of sight, falling somewhere beyond the fight.

Cyril, blind in the dark, continued to stab as Havris cursed and backed away, drawing a dagger from his boot and dropping low to keep from being heard. Cyril had lost him now, and swung their knife in wide arcs as they tried to find where the leader was hiding.

Havris grimaced and came at them from the side, stabbing his dagger down towards Cyril’s thigh but the angle was misplaced, the blade skating off the armor only to be brought up defensively, parrying one of Cyril’s sweeping cuts. Their blades locked and Cyril adjusted to the new location of their foe, each testing the strength of the other as they tried to gain control, gain advantage.

“It is over,” spat Havris, silver scar pulsing in the pitch darkness of the camp. “You hear the screams of your men? The terror in their voices? The Flayed Man drinks of them, the swarms consume them. Your corpses will feed the world, and life will bloom anew on your bones.”

Cyril grunted, struggling against the might of Havris Ravenscarred as he slowly pushed Cyril to their knees, their strength simply too overwhelming. They felt the rubbery floor of mycelium beneath them, felt the water of the bog seeping up to their knees. Their arms were shaking, their strength beginning to flag.

“Shut…up…” they managed through clenched teeth, their blade slipping down and free of the blade lock before they drove it upwards, the point catching Havris under the jaw and carving it half off. The blade skated through flesh like a razor, cutting through one side of his neck and out behind his ear.

The leader of the Haugway cult stumbled back, hands clutching at the wound to try to hold his jaw right, to keep in the blood. His eyes, wide in surprise at the quick reversal, gurgled as he watched Cyril’s impassive form rise to stand over him as he crumpled into a heap on the ground. Within moments his gaze was still, the light fleeing from the mark upon his brow, his blood mingling with the waters of the mire.



Torches sprang to life here and there, illuminating the space once more and revealing to the cultists that their leader was slain, Blightbane missing. In moments they were routed, scattering to the four winds as the fighters who could still stand carved at their fleeing backs, a few more falling as the rest tried to escape.

The Flayed Man, covered in open wounds and surrounded by haggard warriors, screeched as a blade pierced its back and lept into the air, over the heads of those that had it cornered and disappeared into the darkness of the night, its splashing footsteps and eerie moan swiftly fading as it escaped the battle.

A cheer went up as Naressa, brought back to her feet once again after being overwhelmed by the swarming mites, loomed over the collapsed form of Yazma, the witch that released the plague of mites and nearly killed several of her men. Her lip curled as she glared at the old woman, weak and frail on the ground, looking as though she’d been hollowed out by whatever she’d done to summon the swarm.

“Bind and gag her,” she commanded as her crewmen lept into action to make it so. “We can take her back with us for questioning. I’m sure she’ll be useful one way or another, and if she’s not?”

The captain shrugged.

“Then I suppose we can just kill her.”

Cries of victory echoed out through the hollow as the people of Cenotaph finally realized that they’d done it. They won. They’d kicked in the teeth of the Haugway cult and, thanks to the ample availability of bandages and medics to apply them, hadn’t lost a single warrior. The cheers filled the night as the moon came out behind the clouds, a small blessing of light for the coalition.



An hour later, and the support team was still combing through the remains of the camp to find anything of use. Very little seemed to have been kept here, with small huts the only thing approximating civilization. All the weapons were not built to last, the shields and armor crushed and broken beyond usefulness, not even much in the way of food or useful herbs to be found.

“Well now,” said Roach as she waded out into the outskirts of the camp, some strange shape under the water catching her eye. She reached out with a careful hand, probing in the dark murky waters.

“What do we have here?”

Her hand found the grip of the blade, seemingly molding to fit her hand with a living will as she picked it up and drew it from the water. Blightbane, the living blade of Havris Ravenscarred, blessing of the Haugway, sat in her hand, as well balanced as any sword she’d ever held. She tested the blade, as razor sharp as any of her scalpels, and smiled.

“Turns out this wasn’t just a slog through the bog, hm? Might be able to put this to good use.”

Power thrummed within the blade as she affixed it to her belt, and she smiled to herself as she pressed on, searching for more treasures.

“Finders keepers,” she whispered to no one in particular.