Mage: Rise of the Golden Age

Chapter 2, Part 3: Changelings and Seers
Where's that creepy whistling coming from?

The characters were successful in eventually subduing the miscreant trouble makers, determining that three of them were in fact Seers of the Throne and one of them was a Changeling. The police arrived soon after, revealing the Police Chief to be Uther, the Adamant Sage of London. Along with his provost, Madeline, they discovered that one of the captured Seers was once a member of the Free Council, among the number of Mages that had not been accounted for and that they were having trouble tracking down. It seems this is a common theme in London, that the Free Council is going largely unaccounted for.

Though they had knocked the Changeling perpetrator out, Fatty was able to confirm that it was in fact a Changeling after having possessed him. He was also able to impart to the group that whomever it was that he was fleeing to meet up with during the battle was someone that he feared. And most likely for good reason: As the group marched the Changeling back to the tunnels so as to more easily interrogate him (Fatty’s possession of the person made this marching possible), the captured was shot through the temple with a foreign arrow, dying instantly. One of the more unsettling parts was the eerie tune that was being whistled right before the arrow was shot.

Attached to the oddly made arrow (which the Changelings confirmed was from the Hedge) was a piece of odd parchment, or vellum, with only one thing scrawled on it; the words “Titus Andronicus”. This caused Tobias Bongani Decker to go into a small upset fit, disclosing that the name of the True Fae who had been his keeper was named Vellum and this was most certainly a message from him, though he was not sure what it meant.

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Chapter 2, Part 2: Buckingham Palace Road
There was a firefight!

As guard attempting to flee the scene fell to the floor as a result of Drake Turner‘s wind and Halaayt’s gun shot wound, the entire tunnel became a flurry of action. Optimus closed in on the guard but somehow, in an inhuman way, the guard was able to jump up and bolt to the exit of the tunnels before Optimus could catch him. This movement reminded Drake Turner of some goblin contracts that he had heard of in the past. Gabriel created a shadow wall to protect them from the fire of the three guards who seemed to be controlled by some outside force. Scythe, however, in enthusiasm for catching the fleeing culprit, dodged his way around the wall and got himself shot by the controlled guards. Drake Turner followed suit, fumbling his roll under the wall though and crashing into a second guard. Optimus, frustrated by loosing his prey, howled fearsomely at the three guards and they all started to flee in terror, crashing into Gabriel‘s wall in the process. It seemed for the time being that they were no longer under someone else’s control and the group, minus Drake Turner and Gabriel who stayed behind to investigate, chased after their target.

As the target fled down Buckingham Palace Road towards Victoria Station, he chanced to run past Hatter and Delmari who heading towards the palace to catch up with their group. Using an attainment to read the scales on the stranger in palace guard uniform that was fleeing before them, Hatter determined that this man had someone else’s blood on his hands and that they should persue him. Catching up with their compatriots not soon after helped to cement this idea. Kerali cast a time spell to increase her speed and so was easily able to catch up with the fleeing guard, putting him in a headlock to prevent his escape. She did not notice right away, however, that three mages were standing down the street wearing the gilded artifacts of the Seers of the Throne, waiting. The three mages began casting a variety of horrifically vulgar spells, seeming not to care about the Sleepers walking past, and now staring with cameras, as they cast. The streetlights began to spew showers of sparks as an Anamoly paradox was caused, and one Mage manifested horns on his head as a Brand. Fatty succeeded in possessing the headlocked guard so that Kerali no longer needed to hold him as Delmari bum rushed the casting Seers. Police sirens sounded in the distance, quickly approaching.

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Chapter 2, Part 1: London
Of Tunnels and Royals

It was nighttime in London, just as in Belfast, when our heroes arrived in Victoria Station. It wasn’t too late for the station to be empty, but rush hour has certainly ended awhile ago. Lucien, the last one to be tossed through the portal, tripped on his own two feet whilst trying to regain his footing and fell into a wall, injuring his shoulder. There was little time to heal him right away, however, as the group needed to get into contact with the London consilium that was supposedly waiting for them.

Hatter, who had also joined the group on their venture, quickly contacted Aneria, one of the provosts for London. She arranged transport for them in the form of a double decker city bus to bring them to Henry V’s office. This of course was after they got momentarily lost at a pasty shop which confused the non-native Europeans as their definition of “pasties” was not a type of filled pastry.

On the way to the office and as Aneria led them up the lift, the group learned that London consilium stands on quite a bit of old ceremony. Everyone must be formally introduced to the Caucus members before they can communicate with them otherwise they will not be responded to. They also learned that London is actually split up into three sections, with a different sentinel and herald each for England, Scotland, and Wales. The Caucus itself also had its own herald, Speedy, who seemed to be indisposed at the moment.

The office was a buzz with activity and the faint smell of smoke as the injured Mages from the attack had been brought up here for treatment. The group was escorted into Henry V‘s personal office and introduced formally to him, as the Hierarch of London. Oliver, his provost, shortly joined them and was also introduced. Henry V was quite glad for the aid sent by New Atlantis despite Oliver being difficult and untrusting, especially of the Changelings who looked like Sleepers with the help of Lucien’s imbued sweatshirts. They were able to avoid telling him who exactly they were however.

Henry V filled the group in on a little history of London. Apparently, prior to WW2, tunnels had been built in the tunnels underneath Buckingham Palace at the vision of an Acanthus mage of the bombings that would be coming. These tunnels were built for the Royal Family to escape, for they were high profile Sleepwalkers. Queen Elizabeth I had apparently been a Mage herself and since then her family line had all been Sleepwalkers, though no other Mages have awoken in the bloodline yet. As such, the London Consilium keeps a close and protective eye on the Family. The Queen, Prince William, and the new Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, were scheduled to meet with Henry V and were using the tunnels that connect the palace directly to his office when the attack happened. Speedy and the Claviger of their Ladders, Elizabeth, were on their way to meet them. As such, both Mages were being retained on suspicion of being connected to the attack for no enemy had ever infiltrated the Palace or tunnels before. This was sure sign of an inside job. The Royal Family had been safely evacuated but two Mages had been lost in the conflict; one Guardian and one Arrow, both who held prestigious honors of guarding the Royal family directly.

Henry V welcomed their aid in the investigation and asked Aneria to take them down to the tunnels via the Buckingham Gardens entrance. Right after this, Eleven, the Epopt of London, arrived and informed Henry V and Oliver that New Atlantis was awaiting them to sign the treaty. Lucien, who had just recently been healed by Halaayt, offered to stay behind to aid as he could with the injured, as did Hatter. Alexis just seemed to want to poke around the offices for some reason. Dalmari, the sentinel that Brigid had sent along, politely requested that he stay with that portion of the group for their protection, should they need it, as Belfast Mages. The rest went down to the tunnels.

The tunnels smelled of a chemical smoke, rather than a burning smoke, and there were still bodies laying about, strewn among the palace guards that were stationed along the hallways. Three London mages were down there, Jeramiah, Doriah, and Charles, attempting to investigate, though Jeramiah seemed more obsessed with whether the bodies had been moved or not. Halaayt instructed Optimus to distract the Sherlock Guardian so that they could begin investigating. Optimus took this as a cue to pee on Jeramiah’s leg.

Tobias Bongani Decker took a look around and determined that, from the marks on the walls, that the flash bang that the Guardians found out had been used was tossed from a position that would have been within the group of palace guards escorting the royal family. Gabriel determined that one of the dead guards had left behind a ghost and with the aid of Tobias Bongani Decker they discovered from the extremely emo ghost that one of this compatriots suddenly got very angry at the same time that someone else in his unit pulled the flash bang, which is not standard issue for them. Several of the guards, he said, seemed to change demeanor and move as if they were being controlled, pulling guns.

At this same time, Kerali set herself about using time sight to watch what happened during the scene. Her spell went off flawlessly and she was able to watch the event multiple time and figure out exactly what happened. She saw that Speedy and Elizabeth were coming up from the outside entrance to meet the Royal Family at an intersection of tunnels. It was then that the flash bangs were tossed and fire was opened. Elizabeth loosed a fire spell and a contingent of Mages from the outside rushed inside to see what was happening. The smoke from the flash bangs and the confusion overwhelmed them, however, and they went first after Speedy and Elizabeth, as it seemed the bullets were coming from them. One Mage in that group, though, seemed to know exactly what was going on and shot for the Royal Family, but missed. The most interesting part of all of this, was that the first person who pulled a gun in the Royal Guard changed his face during the conflict, similar to an ability that Tobias Bongani Decker displayed during the meeting in Emain Macha.

Kerali requested that all of the Palace Guards who were on duty be brought down for inspection and questioning, for it was entirely possible that the perpetrator was still present. Aneria did this and not long later the group found themselves staring down some of the most prestigious guards in Her Majesty’s service. The use of Mage sight provided many clues including a foreign aura (which Scythe discovered) that had never been seen before, and a heavy cloud of death about one particular man in the back of the group. Kerali picked up on this as well with her Fate sight and just as the three of them started indicating to one another that they were suspecting the same person, three of the other guards changed demeanor again and pulled guns. The man in question bolted for the exit. As the group started to react, Drake Turner somehow was able to send a gust of wind to knock the man into a wall as Kerali twisted his luck against him and Halaayt shot him, somehow succeeding in hitting him in a part of his arm that was not covered by kevlar. Bad luck for him!

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Chapter 1, Part 2: New Atlantis Continued
Of Changelings and Misplaced Mages

While awaiting news on Mona and her child, the party continued on. People mingled, got to know one another, and got to gather information on other individuals. Tobias Bongani Decker and Drake Turner, in particular, attempted to gather some more information about the Mages they were stuck in a crowd of while trying to not give themselves away. They discovered that they could get more information on the recent forest fires in Killarney from Jareth, who seemed to also know a fair amount of information on Changelings. Gabriel also talked to him to learn more about the inner workings of his new companions.

Soon enough, though, word was received that both mother and baby were fine. And so the night’s events continued on with an announcement that the Mysterium would be holding an open ritual later. Eowyn then delivered a speech to all the peoples gathered in rememberance of those Mages who had fallen in the past year due to the series of attacks. It was moving and touching and brought many a tear to the eyes in the room. Following this, the bar was then opened up with whiskey available for all, in Irish style. And then, of course, the representative from the Tokyo consilium turned on their panda karaoke machine and the butchering of Frank Sinatra resonated through the walls.

It was about this time that our plucky heroes were pulled aside by the heads of the newly formed New Atlantis consilium and heads of several other major consilii including Vancouver. They informed the heroes that there was task they needed them to do, but first they required a briefing from the Changelings on what they had discovered in regards to the Forest Fire in Killarney. Tobias Bongani Decker spoke first, as one who frequently teaches Changelings about Mages, this time he ended up teaching the gathered Mages a little bit about Changelings, how they became what they were, and who the True Fae were. Unfortunately, the course of the conversation because extremely stressful for Drake Turner, who at this point was going by the name Wheeler, and the gathered Mages actually witnessed him swap personalities, to the Sleeper persona Drake who remained blissfully ignorant to the world of Supernaturals. Drake Turner then proceeded to ease the stress in the room by hitting on Hatter, the Arrow provost for Vancouver, by showing him rather inappropriate pictures of himself.

During the course of this discussion, though, Tobias Bongani Decker revealed that his investigations had discovered that one Mage had escaped the fire, though the other accomplices had either been killed by Mages or the forest spirits. This Mage, described as a tall, older gentleman with greying hair, was met deep within the forest by another Mage and Changeling. All three then portaled away. This description of the Mage seemed to strike a chord with Kerali’s Fate Sight and she revealed to the gathering that Gawain, a ally of Belfast and friend of the Chosen Ones, had gone missing and she rather feared the worst. Alexis quickly set about scrying on their lost friend and succeeded in finding him in a hotel room. Gawain, sensing that he was being spied upon, quickly ran to the bathroom and grabbed a piece of soap to write “London, Help” on the mirror before footsteps were heard in the hallway and he was forced to clean it off. Alexis ended the spell here.

It was revealed to the group that the gathered Caucuses wished to send them to London where they had learned an attacked had been made near Buckingham Palace and this is what had prevented their Caucus from attending the treaty signing. They wished for the group to head over and help where ever they could for though it was not official, New Atlantis still considered London allies and wished to cement the fragile relationship as best they could. While there, they could also research the disappearance of Gawain. They wished for the Chosen Ones to go, of course, and Pukka insisted that the Changelings join them as their talents and expertise would be of help. Brigid requested that she send one of her Sentinels along for the experience, and Tallulah requested that she send Scythe along, also for the experience.

This last request caused a bit of an issue, however. Akasha, provost for the Guardians of Vancouver, protested loudly. He claimed that Scythe was untrustworthy, due to his connections to Boston. Dulbhach argued, saying that he has personally researched the Mysterium member and that he was clean. Akasha, literally sniffing around Scythe disagreed with Dulbhach’s assessment and began to question Scythe himself. The argument quickly escalated as Akasha pulled his gun on Scythe, much to the protestations of the rest of the gathered Caucus shy of Anastasia and despite all weapons having been checked at the door of the party, and demanded that he answer truthfully. Akasha then dragged Scythe out of the room to do a private investigation on the Obrimos Mage.

Eventually, the two returned and Akasha declared that Scythe was cleared…for the time being at least. He also made a point of informing Dulbhach that he had rounded out his files for him, filling in the holes. Dulbhach did not seem too thrilled. But Hatter urged that they start to get a move on and Malachi opened a portal for the group into Victoria Station in London. Lovki was able to arm anyone who needed a gun before they left and off they jumped into the portal, except for Lucien who was tossed into the portal rather unceremoniously for straggling behind.

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Chapter 1, Part 1: The New Atlantis Charter
Oracles, Babies and Pandas, OH MY!

The scene opens upon October 31st, 2011 at Emain Macha as people from all over Ireland and indeed the globe gather together to celebrate the signing of the New Atlantis Charter and Treaty. This marks a pinnacle in Mage society as the first time so many consilii have come together for a single purpose. Everyone who was anyone was there.

Halaayt and Gabriel, in their new positions as guardians of Emain Macha, found themselves on security duty, making sure no funny business (well, nothing troublesome anyway) went down. Lucien, Scythe, and Alexis were all there and even Kerali had made an appearance, come in from Cairo to read the omen for the Charter signing. Also in attendance were Tobias Bongani Decker and Drake Turner who had been invited by Pukka to forge stronger ties between the Changelings and Mages…seemingly. Most people were unaware that the two were Changelings and not simply Sleepwalkers. Except for Alexis, who for some reason was able to randomly see through Drake Turner’s mask and had no idea what to make of the creature she saw. The image faded before her eyes back into a regular person before long, however, and she decided to move on.

There was great food to be had and Alexis even declared that Lynx, formerly the Seer Valentine, should be forgiven for his previous existence due to his delicious hot chocolate recipe. The representatives from Tokyo brought with them a giant panda shaped balloon that apparently had speakers built into it for karaoke which they insisted must be part of the night’s festivities. Lovki did his best to fight this movement, but seems to have lost.

The night has not gone entirely without trouble, however. Whispers on the edges of the room from some of the higher ranking Mages revealed that some of the consilii scheduled to attend were missing; it turned out that Moscow was running later, but London was nowhere to be found. A phone call to their Sage, Uther, revealed that trouble was afoot and that there was some sort of attack going on. It was determined that the best course of action would be get the Charter and Treaty signed so that aid could be sent to London as a united front.

Thus, the New Atlantis Consilium, an amalgamation of all four Irish Consilii, was signed into being, with representatives from each order and each consilium there to sign with Conchobar as Hierarch. As is tradition, an omen was then read by Kerali, one of the Chosen, to give a sense of direction as to where the new consilium would head.

Except that when she opened her book to do her bibliomancy, a strange thing happened; her eyes began to glow and she spoke as though she had two separate voices speaking as one. She said:
“There are two separate paths that may be tread: one will lead to a glorious new golden age for Mage kind. Beware the follies that led us to our previous downfall. Look to the new Chosen Ones who will guide you. And seek the help from the other Supernaturals who can aid you.”

Those who had their Mage Sight active beheld a column of power emanating down from the ceiling around Kerali and those familiar enough recognized it as energy from the Supernal Realm of Arcadia; the most pure vision of it they had ever seen before. Some could even recognize it as the power of the Oracle of Arcadia herself.

As Kerali finished speaking a cry went out from the crowd and Mona, very pregnant with her and Aleister’s first child appeared to go into labor. Except that something was terribly wrong; she seemed in far too much pain than she should be so quickly and there was quite a bit of blood. Gabriel saw a mantle of death start to settle about her and the child and so she was whisked off to the hospital with Aleister, Brigid, and Halaayt in tow, Lucien carrying her handbag behind her.

They got her to the hospital with aid of Rowan, an Arrow from Vancouver with a special talent for quick portaling. Once in the hospital though, Mona began to take a turn for the worst and she began to flatline. With Halaayt, Brigid, and Lucien’s quick thinking, however, they were able to bring her back and give her the strength to go into surgery to retrieve the baby. Both mother and child lived; its a boy.

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Prologue - Metathron and the Hill of Tara
Where did the last month go?

We found our plucky heroes within the safe walls (relatively speaking) of Tower Books. Lucien found himself cornered by the ever inquisitive and impetuous Scythe, who sought more insight in regards to the Revelation. Halaayt and Gabriel were busy tending to customers of “special interests” while Boromir aided Gozer. Some regular customers, Drake Turner and Tobias Bongani Decker also perused the store; Drake Turner had some pamphlets regarding saving the Hill of Tara as well that he enthusiastically handed out to anyone who would listen to him.

After a brief altercation with a “special interests” customer who called herself Moonshine Jadewing and exhalted the existence of unicorns and their nemeses, demicorns, Pukka boldly made her entrance into the bookshop, drawing the curtains of every window and shooing out any lingering Sleepers in a flurry before slamming the door closed and locking it. She then decided that she was in need of a cup of a delightful cup of coffee. Gabriel made sure to change it to decaf.

Pukka then informed them all of a dire situation that was turning up on the Hill of Tara. Upon questioning why the two seemingly Sleeper individuals were not pushed out, that is Drake Turner and Tobias Bongani Decker. After being sworn to secrecy by both Mage and Hedge Oaths, it was revealed that both individuals were in fact Changelings, that is, individuals who had been kidnapped by Fae and tortured for a time before escaping back to the Fallen Realm. Pukka revealed that she too, is a Changeling, and permitted the Mages to see what her Changeling form looks like. She also pointed out that Mage/Changelings are exceedingly rare.

Back to the topic of the Hill of Tara: the last time that the Mages of the Tower were at the Hill they discovered that something strange had happened on there. It had become a False Demesne; the area was attempting to make itself into a recreation of the Mage realm of Arcadia, but was twisted in some strange way. They believed it was due to the continued and failed castings by Seers of the Throne. At the time, the Mages of the Tower had other pertinent matters to attend to and did not think it dire enough to clear up right away. Two years later, the False Demesne has grown even worse and there have been reports of the entire Hill blinking in and out of existence. Additionally, reports have also been made that some sort of angelic looking being has been seen in the vicinity of the Hill and lately people in Dublin have been dying of freak but oddly coincidental accidents. This last item concerned the Changelings especially as it was possible that the being could have been one of the True Fae, come to kidnap humans and Changelings alike and bring them back to their realm which the Changelings have also taken to calling Arcadia. Whether the two Arcadias are in fact the same realm remains a mystery, however.

After a call to Echo, one of the Heralds of Dublin, to confirm information and offer aid. the group set off to Dublin, driving down the coast. There they met Echo and Glinda at the Brazen Head Inn who were both investigating the Hill and the angelic being. Gozer discovered a Twitter account that was tweeting information in regards to a “Woeful Angel” and a “Spirit of Fate” that seemed pertinent. Discovering the tweet was issued from an account within Dublin, the group travelled to St. Patrick’s Cathedral. It was there that they discovered a little old lady running the gift shop stand who had just learned how to Tweet from her grand daughter. She had been hearing reports from tourists and other congregation members about how someone, or something, has been going around pronouncing dire Fates for people that it runs into. These Fated people then end up dying horrific, spontaneous deaths. The Mages learned that there could be a possible connection to Metathron, the arch-angel.

Outside the cathedral, the group discussed what possible options they had to destroy the False Demesne. Scythe proposed that if it were False and therefore not truly of the Supernal Realms, then perhaps the use or creation of a Soul Stone would cause the Demesne to balance out. Some agreed, some disagreed, but Pukka offered her services as the only Acanthus Archmage in the group who was capable of creating such an item, if that is the decision they went with.

Meanwhile, one of the random passers-by on the side walk accidentally bumped in to Tobias Bongani Decker. The seemingly non-descript individual, upon picking up the notebook that he dropped, looked at Tobias Bongani Decker straight in the eyes and told him “If you fail to stabilize the foundation, everything you fear shall come to pass”. The man then continued on his way. Instantly following sneakily, Tobias Bongani Decker used his Changeling abilities to determine that this man was certainly supernatural, but was not sure of what ilk. Fatty, whom Gabriel had sent to also follow the man, saw that with Mage Sight on this man looked like a bright, shining being made of light with flowing crimson robes that moved as if caught in its own breeze. He also saw with the Death Sight that a new cloud of death had settled upon Tobias Bongani Decker. Upon returning to the group and reporting this, they decided to high tail it out to the Hill and figure out how to fix in the best interests of their party member.

The trip to Tara was not easy, however. Tobias Bongani Decker nearly wrecked the car he was driving when a child dropped a ball in the street that quite strangely bounced up, hit the windshield, started bouncing off the car in front and was aiming for underneath the car. Due to the quick thinking of Drake Turner with his air elemental skills, Pukka‘s fate magic, and Halaayt’s reaction time, they were able to prevent any injury or death, though Tobias Bongani Decker’s car was totalled. So they piled back into the cars that were still drivable and continued on. When they had nearly reached the Hill, another near car accident occurred and they thought it best to walk the rest of the way.

The False Demesne had grown exponentially since last the Mages of the Tower visited it. To walk within it now was like walking into a dream landscape where Time ruled and things like light and matter held little meaning. To Drake Turner’s horror, he discovered that the Hedge, the boundary between the Fae realm of Arcadia and this world was non existent in this area, meaning that any of the True Fae could simply just walk right in. Scythe, Lucien, and Gozer experimented with a few spells to determine how the Demesne reacted and found the Fate and Time magics were incredibly strong here while it was extremely difficult to get off a Forces spell without invoking paradox.

Gozer had just used a Time spell to look back into the past and determine that the False Demesne had been the result of one, huge paradox caused by the Seers two years ago (which they decided to simply walk away from) when Metathron issued forth from the Mound of Hostages in blazing glory, dressed in crimson robes and appearing to any without Mage Sight as fearsome Archangel, clad in steel armor and gigantic wings. It decried Gozer as a prideful sinner and in trapping his gaze, it began to drain mana from him. Gozer finally broke his gaze and Metathron turned its attention to the rest of the group, telling them that they were all overly prideful. Scythe coward and bowed to the being, but Halaayt had decided that she had enough. Running on adreneline, she screamed back at the Spirit and covered Pukka‘s eyes as she had been caught in Metathron’s gaze as well. The Spirit screamed and attacked Halaayt with his massive sword and a battle began between the group and the Spirit while Pukka performed the ritual to create a soul stone. Tobias Bongani Decker, though a Changeling, had apparently studied something of Mage rituals because he stepped forth with a chant that aided Pukka’s rite.

The battle was fierce for the Spirit was extremely powerful, but eventually Drake Turner spewed some vile, smog like air at the Spirit, causing it to reel back as Optimus, Halaayt‘s familiar, howled a harrowing cry that sent fear straight into the core of Metathron, and it began to flee the field. In the final blows, Fatty and Gozer were able to destroy the Spirit’s material body, and it faded away back into the Spirit realm.

Pukka, with the aid of the strange time effects of the demesne and Tobias Bongani Decker, was able to complete the Soul Stone quickly and without difficulty, the stone taking the shape of a fist sized, glittery disco ball of energy. Alas, the power surge that accompanied the creation caused the False Demesne to grow and engulf the group before it disappeared and became a regular hilltop again. And it was then that the group discovered they had been transported into the future, right to the last week of October.

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