Dispatch 16: Q'Barra Blindenstone 3
Mol, 23 Aryth, 998 YK

House Sivis’ Q’Barra expedition resumes as operative Fell Severins continues in his tireless pursuit of the Blindenstone. In our last installment, Fell and his companion, the House Jorasco healer Jin-Mae, discovered that Riedran agents from the mysterious continent of Sarlona somehow beat them to their prize deep in the Q’Barran jungle. Neither were quite prepared for the expedition’s next development -- an abrupt change of venue …

Mol, 23 Aryth, 998 YK
From: Fell Severins
To: Viceroy Camilla Severins, Overseer, Korranberg Sivis Enclave
archival reference code 1043-B: transcribed from message via augmented speaking stone, magically sealed and encoded

Dearest sister mine,

Hard to know where to begin. The short version is: We’ve lost our Q’Barran jungle guides and the Deneith sellswords; we’re no longer chasing the Anand (nor the Riedrans); and we still don’t have possession of the Blindenstone. Oh, and we’re trudging through snow in northern Sarlona now, surrounded by arctic shifters.

Funny old world, isn’t it? It happened like this --

After discovering evidence of the Riedrans' presence in Q’Barra, we continued tracking them through the Basura Swamp. My instinct was that the Riedrans had also come for the Blindenstone, and that perhaps we could strike a bargain. The puzzling element was that we still had seen no sign of the Anand, the reclusive cult said to be in possession of the 'stone in the first place.

That mystery was solved yesterday when we came upon the scorched remains of the Anand settlement upon a plateau within the swamp. Evidently, the Riedrans had taken the Blindenstone by force. Though we found no corpses among the still-smoldering embers, our Q’Barran lizardfolk guides did manage to pick up the Riedrans' trail once again. Near dusk, the trail abruptly ended. Jin-Mae and I separated from the group to consult about our situation. As we picked through the vines, there was a bright flash and I had a sickening feeling of vertigo.

Teleportation circle, I suspect, for we are now in the port city of Whitetooth, far north in Sarlona’s Tashana Tundra region. More than that, I cannot say, for I do not know. Events have transpired rapidly within the last hour. More details will follow as they come to light. I do know this: The Riedrans are dead, the Blindenstone is missing, and this city is nothing but snow and tribal Sarlonan shifters! I am not, as you can imagine, dressed for the occasion. A most interesting errand this has turned out to be, sister.

Foul-tempered yet somehow bemused, I remain --

-- your brother Fell

NPC: Fell Severins, House of Sivis

Fell Severins CR 7
Male gnome bard 7
CN small humanoid
Init +2; Senses low light vision; Listen +2, Spot +0
Languages Common, Gnome, Elven, Dwarven

AC 18, touch 13, flat-footed 16
(+2 Dex, +5 armor, +1 size)
hp 37 (7 HD)
Resist +2 on saves against illusions
Fort +3, Ref +7, Will +5

Speed 20 ft. (4 squares)
Melee +1 rapier sword cane +3 (1d4+1/18-20) or
Ranged +1 shortbow +9 (1d4+1/x3)
Base Atk +5; Grp +1
Atk Options Point Blank Shot
Special Actions bardic music 7/day (suggestion [DC 16], inspire competence, inspire courage +1, fascinate 3 creatures, countersong)
Combat Gear potions of invisibility, gaseous form, flying, cure serious wounds
Bard Spells Prepared (CL 7th)
3rd -- summon living dragonmark
2nd -- cure moderate wounds, suggestion (DC 15), invisibility
1st -- cure light wounds, charm person (DC 14), identify, disguise self
0 -- detect magic, prestidigitation, mage hand
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 7th)
2/day -- comprehend languages; 1/day -- tongues, speak with animals (burrowing mammal only, duration 1 minute), dancing lights, ghost sound, prestidigitation.

Abilities Str 10 Dex 14 Con 13 Int 14 Wis 11 Cha 17
SQ bardic knowledge +9
Feats Least Mark of Scribing, Lesser Mark of Scribing, Point Blank Shot
Skills Concentration +11, Diplomacy +15, Disguise +13, Gather Information +13, Hide +16, Jump -6, Knowledge (geography) +12, Knowledge (nobility) +12
Possessions combat gear plus +1 mithril shirt, +1 shortbow with 20 arrows, +1 rapier sword cane, Heward’s handy haversack

Fell Severins is something of an embarrassment to his family and those in the know within House Sivis. He left home at an early age to quench his insatiable wanderlust and has traveled far and wide across both Khorvaire and Xen’drik. Only his close relationship with his sister, Viceroy Camilla Severins, Overseer with the Korranberg Sivis Enclave, keeps his House Sivis status intact.

Fell remains a bit of a scoundrel. Although his heart is essentially good, he is prone to using his superior gifts for language, magic, and deception to manipulate people and events around him. He often supplements his income as an adventurer by brokering information and fencing stolen goods.

His upbringing in House Sivis, along with his still-developing dragonmark abilities, travels, and personal predilections, have gifted Fell with a great proficiency for lost languages and obscure forms of communication. His bardic music abilities are drawn from a unique style of chanting, invented by Fell and his sister in childhood. These chants tend to draw upon long-forgotten words and phrases combining several languages both living and dead.

Melee-averse to an extreme, Fell relies on his bardic chant, spells, and shortbow to stay well away from the action while still supporting his companions. He always keeps potions of invisibility, flying, and gaseous form on hand to escape unfavorable situations. Currently impoverished and on the run from several former business partners, Fell is desperately trying to win back favor with House Sivis to gain privileges and protection.

PCs might make acquaintance with Fell Severins in any situation where contraband or valuable information is brokered.

About the Author

Glenn McDonald is a freelance writer and game designer in lovely Chapel Hill, North Carolina. He writes about games, film, technology, pop culture, shady characters, conflicted heroes, strange and terrible magic, and shadowy fantasy noir intrigue. Not all at the same time.

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