You finally make it to Kythros in the wee hours of morning. You rode all night, hoping you wouldn’t be attacked again during the night. When the gate guards see you, exhausted & dirty, they simply let you in immediately and even offer to escort you thru the morning traffic to Ranger HQ.
You report at least your presence to Sgt Guz, the ogre and aid to Sgt-major Mindril, semi-coherently. He acknowledges your arrival and orders you to get some much deserved rest. Even if he hadn’t ordered it, you would’ve done so anyway. You thought he said he’d take care to find quarters for Roberre. Whatever.
Hunger wakes you, late in the afternoon. You all stagger to the mess hall at various times, and sit together, more or less. Then you clean yourselves up, get a new change of clothes and square away your gear.
Vandien files his official reports, along with the corroborating reports of fellow Rangers and various peoples of note you met during your mission.
The next morning finds you all in better spirits, as some much needed sleep and good food was supplied. Sgt Guz summons you to the offices of Sgt-Major Kork Mindril, the Rangers’ non-com officer (a dwarf warrior).
Roberre is there, seated just outside his office. He nods a greeting to you, as you enter to see your commander.
Mindril is looking at Vandien’s reports with interest as you enter. He signals for some of you so sit (there are only two other chairs) and with Horak and Guz there, it’s a tight squeeze.
’’I’m extremely please ‘bout your capture of Ballok and some of his gang. Apparently Lord Erevan and Capt. Devan will be keeping an eye out for more trouble there and the reputation o’ the Rangers is most likely on the mends.’’
‘’Guz was right. Ye really are the best o’ the lot. I’m placin’ you under a special command unit, effective right now’’
He hands over to you, Vandien a letter, sealed with the mark of the Rangers and the personal seal of lady Grayson herself, and then saiz while looking you very seriously, directly in the eyes;
‘’This be a Letter of Orders, signed by me and counter-signed by the Lord Commander, Lady Grayson. If’n anyone else of rank questions ye about your orders, your mission, or your business, ye are t’show ‘em this, let ’em see the seals, and respectfully be on yer way – without explainin’ more’n ye have to about what ye be doin’. Don’t be rude, an’ respect the chain o’ command, but ye be on Command business. That be no one else’s place to interfere, officer or no. I hope ye understand’’
Ye might hear the term ‘’Ghost Wolves’’ among other rangers. It’s an un-official name that’s been used in the past to refer to a squad o’ Rangers outside the regular chain o’ command. Don’t deny or confirm anythin’ if somebody asks.’’
‘’Now it’s time for y’a to introduce yer new friend there, Roberre, and tell me more about ‘im and this message he’s s’pposed to deliver to the Raven’’
Vandien opens the door and asks Roberre to enter. Both you and he relate how you met and Roberre stresses the urgency of delivering his message.
When Sgt Mindril tries to push Roberre for more information, Roberre simply re-states; ‘’It is a very important, but also a very confidential matter. I can assure you that it has much to do with the days to come, but I can say no more than that.’’
Mindril then dismisses you all for now. ’’You’re free for the day, but put on your dress uniforms for the dinner at the late 6 bells (i.e. 6PM).’’ he says.
When you enter the mess hall, later that day, many other Rangers are there, standing at attention on either side of the hall. And the Sargeants Mindril & Guz are there as well as few of the respected teaching staff, at the far end of the hall. You all make your way down the cleared floor to trumpet fanfare. Sgt-Major Mindril announces that the Rangers before him are to be rewarded with a promotion in ranks, due to their outstanding service and courage.
Vandien is promoted to Sgt-Minor, Malen is now a full Sgt., while Vanessa and Toji become Corporals and Erdan & Horak are raised to Rangers 1st-Class. Everyone applauds and a feast is enjoyed by all.
The next day, Malen spends time with Jenna, who’s still recovering from the shock of her grievous wounds, some of it mental.
Vandien had searched for Neala, but was told her and her squad are off on a mission to escort a Duke back to his home of Olara. But while you’re relaxing and simply going about some personal business, you get to see some Rangers you haven’t seen in a while. Sgt-Minor Reager, Sgt Ssukko (a dregordian warrior), Corporal Filbur Ironhand (a dwarf warrior) and a few others. You and Vanessa trained with him a few years ago. You exchange stories and he asks about the stranger you guys arrived with the previous morning. You only speak in vague terms and he says he understand that you might be under orders to keep quiet. These are troubled times after all.
Toji and Horak spend some time together, sharing stories about their goblinesh origins.
Vanessa and Erdan, as well as Malen (once he can be pried away from Jenna) are introduced to a man called Helroth (see picture attached), a powerful Arch-mage from Mindroth’s Tower. He says that he detected the recent use of the Portals in the Halls of the Well.
When he was younger and travelled about, with his companions, much like you Rangers, he discovered the Halls of the Well. He spent much time researching them, experimenting with them and exploring their various locations. He’s kept them a secret to avoid the enemies of the Southern Kingdoms from using them. But since you Rangers know about them now and have used them (and now some elves in Landra’feya as well), he figures you may as well be armed with the proper information.
There is the Hall near Berell town, one north of Ey’Dreigh (in the great elven forest) and the ruined one near Haven (where you fought the fish-like creatures, but Helroth has blocked access to/from that one Hall).
Helroth requires all three of these Rangers to commit to memory the proper combination for the Berell & Ey’Dreigh Halls, as well as a third Hall, to be used only in extreme emergencies. This third Hall is the one beneath his tower in the Peace Woods, near Mindroth’s Tower. He also instructs them on how to lock the gates behind them, should the need arise.
He warns about using and abusing the waters of the Wells in each hall. The Berell Hall had been corrupted by the mad alchemist, and its waters seemed to affect a living being’s heath and vigor. Helroth is looking into cleaning it up and purifying it. The Ey’Dreigh Well, affects ones physical strength (Erdan will most likely find this very interesting).