Echoes

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Echoes was a storyline held in Solhaven during the spring of 2018 after the destruction of Talador, featuring Wihliam of Oire.
Special thanks to the GMs Lydil, Galene, Tamuz, Valyrka, and Kaikala for the storyline.
The summary below is woven together from posts made by GM Lydil and Raelee in particular, but also Phanna, Gavrien, and myself.
Please note that there are gaps in the storyline, due to the time passed and lack of records for some events.
-- Evrali

Events

Olaesta 17, 5118
A dispatch was sent out from Jantalar alerting travelers through the Baronies about wild animal attacks for the past month. Travelers were warned to be extra vigilant and wary.

Olaesta 20, 5118
Early in the month, a traveling bard by the name of Wihliam of Oire arrived in North Market, seeking new inspiration. He visited repeatedly and, each time he played his harp, local dogs, daggerbeaks, or beasts outside town would become agitated. On Olaesta 19, he declared he was moving on, but the animal agitation continued. The following night, aggressive animals, including non-native ones, were found roaming Outlands Road.

Olaesta 22, 5118
Wihliam of Oire visited again, insisting it was his first visit in roughly five years, despite multiple claims to the contrary. When questioned about the discrepancy, Wihliam insisted the local residents were wrong, rude, and/or addled in the brain. His appearance differed noticeably, in age and garb, and he bore a new scar across his face.

Olaesta 24, 5118
As a warm breeze blew into Solhaven, a variety of beasts attacked along the West Road, from roltons to leopards, dobrems, salamanders, vipers, and even griffins. As the wind waned, the attacks died down to nothing. It was noted that many creatures were native to the area, but others were more exotic and represented in the local zoo.

Olaesta 26, 5118
A brawl broke out between two musicians at the Drowned Boar over a stolen song. Eventually, the instigator, allegedly Wihliam of Oire, was slain. Reports indicated this Wihliam dissolved into musical notes that faded into the ground before witnesses. Further complicating matters was the claim that Wihliam of Oire was older than the man who began the fight.

Ivastaen 6, 5118
Wihliam appeared again in North Market, speaking of upcoming performances. He did not recognize any present and appeared confused about his recent past or how he came to the market. When pressed, he grew agitated and discordant music could be heard throughout the market, despite no apparent source. Those casting at Wihliam to soothe him or detect anything could find only discordance until he ultimately fled, overwhelmed.

Ivastaen 9, 5118
Sir Gedrick the Grey, a wandering knight from Trauntor, returned to Solhaven for the first time in many years. He had been traveling the northern baronies, attempting to help those in need, and brought news of increasingly frequent and severe animal attacks that left several dead. He was informed of the suspicions about Wihliam of Oire and his strange changes in age and appearance. Ultimately, Sir Gedrick indicated he would stay a few days longer to investigate the attacks.

Ivastaen 19, 5118
Despite plans made the previous night by concerned citizens and Sir Gedrick, the first attempt to capture Wihliam proved a failure.

Ivastaen 26, 5118
Heralded by strange music and animal sounds on the winds, many creatures attacked again, including griffins. Evrali Marchand, one of the few to have healed or sensed Wihliam, received disorienting visions during the flashes of lightning from an unexpected storm that hit Solhaven. The visions seemed to be of different places, possibly ones he had traveled during his career. The night wound down with more theorizing.

Lumnea 1, 5118
A calm, elder version of Wihliam of Oire was found playing his harp in South Haven. In an attempt to avoid upsetting him, casual questions were asked and careful spells cast. Two things were learned: his discordance was triggered by magic and whatever had happened to him related to the Bleaklands.

Lumnea 2, 5118
Using a special bloodjewel given to Magister Raelee Svala, Malvernus, a regional representative for the Hall of Mages, spoke to those gathered in North Market. He discussed the animal attacks and receiving news from Raelee. He indicated his intent to investigate near the Bleaklands, suggesting he might require aid in the future. After his departure, Sir Mynon Felcroth suggested a future attempt to corral Wihliam atop the anti-magic tower in the Outlands.

Lumnea 7, 5118
Reports spread about the vicious animal attacks stretching across the Northern Baronies from Vornavis to Riverwood. Jantalar reportedly sent an official request to the Hall of Mages to investigate. Rumors spread about possible investigations and plans already underway.

Lumnea 9, 5118
Acting upon a plan suggested by Malvernus, Evrali and Dirra Crawfinn connected empathically to Wihliam in an attempt to find and mark a location in the Bleaklands to be used during the upcoming expedition. A glimmering object half-buried in the ground was seen, speculated to be a harp.

Strummerat convinced Wihliam to briefly part with his silver harp. Immediately, Wihliam appeared pained and the harp seemed to fade in the other bard’s hands. He attempted to return it, but it was dropped and broken. Wihliam seemed greatly pained and soon dissolved into shimmering music notes as had occurred twice previously.

Malvernus sent word about the expedition, but was first handling another animal attack in the East.

Lumnnea 11, 5118
Malvernus arrived in town, confirming the marks had been set and plans to travel to the Bleaklands in two days to investigate the mystery.

Lumnea 13, 5118
Interested parties traveled to the edge of the Bleaklands to locate and examine the source of the musical disturbance causing unrest. They located a cavern holding an odd temporal anomaly. Malvernus led the group into the cavern where it eventually opened up to reveal a brilliant fireball and a lone man holding a silver harp, nearly frozen within a temporal bubble.

Ultimately a plan was made to manipulate and disrupt the temporal anomaly. Wihliam was wrested from the path of the fireball, which was deflected upward to explode harmlessly against the cavern ceiling.

Those present learned Wihliam had been in Talador when the destruction hit, and the cavern had been the nearest shelter he could find. Chased by a wave of fire, he played his harp in the hopes of doing something to save himself and created the temporal bubble.

On the wagon trip back to Vornavis, he started to have flashes of memory of those present. It became evident his appearances over the past few months were echoes of himself, and they were bouncing back to the origin all at once. He was disoriented, distressed, and pained by the sudden, unexpected experiences.

Arriving back at the Vornavis Caravansary, the group made for the north gate of the city, but Wihliam was having trouble staying upright. Encouraged to try playing his harp, he shakily moved to do so. The strings snapped one after another, and the frame broke apart and fell to the ground.

Wihliam was induced to sleep to allow him some reprieve from his ongoing fits, then taken away into Vornavis proper. The bard Gavrien reluctantly agreed to loresing to the broken instrument, and received a series of impressions that stepped backwards chronologically. It was said that inquiries could be made about the harp, and that the strain of Wihliam's echoes coming home to roost so abruptly might have damaged him irreparably.

Note: To date, no further news has been heard regarding Wihliam of Oire’s status, despite occasional inquiries.