The days passed and the recent excitement had tapered off. The Marshall was on the mend and Torkk had sent off an excuse explaining his delay. Life began to normalize but still the marked could not pretend that something hadn’t changed.
The group, together with the Marshal tried to figure out their next steps. All Marshall Raith had to offer was that it would be nice if they could find an old military base left undisturbed so that Corsica could better arm itself. There was some discussion about bringing Morgan Blaine in on the water source find but in the end the idea was discarded, or at least shelved.
Given the strange alloy found by the water source, it was thought that perhaps the tunnel beyond the water deserved more exploration. Perhaps the unknown metal was military design and perhaps there was more below. Eventually, it was agreed on that it was worth exploring and so our heroes set off to do just that.
The group made their way down, at first spiraling into the depths but eventually heading westward. After a long journey it became clear that the cave walls had started to offer their own low bioluminescent light source. A bit further and the tunnel opened up into a massive cavern. Below, the ruins of a city. Within the city, hundreds if not thousands of things moved about. Humans? Not likely. The occasion scream-roar make it clear what they were. Beyond the city, an inky blackness where no cave fungus offered light.
Proceeding into that warren seemed unwise so the group wasted no time exploring and made a hasty retreat.
More days passed…
A man stumbled into town. He was wrapped head to toe in cloth as well as clothed and cloaked. Both the man and his attire looked well worn and travelled. Dark rust colored spots suggested blood beneath the wraps. Amazingly, he asked to speak to the marked.
He was Vericus Thain, Prophet of Rhiathasia, and he had a story to tell. But first he sought to make an impression. Unwrapping a bit of his body he displayed markings similar to those worn by the group though redder, angrier, and sometimes bloodied. He told them he, like those before him would soon die from his markings. Then he began his tale.
He told of the time of magic, long forgotten even to the histories of the old world. A time when Elves, Dwarves, and other races lived along side the humans and small folk. He told of the destruction of magic and how it remains but in a tattered state. He told of the old world, of its corporations, of the Changed, and of the exodus. He told of the world trying to heal itself and of the Prophets of Rhiathasia being the world’s first attempt that he was aware of. He told of how he believed that the groups markings, and how they differed from his own suggested that the world was trying something different. He told of his order being murdered by unknown assailants. He told of his orders leader, Lady Rhiathasia, absence from the monastery at the time of the attack. He told of her identity… an Elf. He told of his visions of them finding crystalised shards of the world’s soul, which he called soul shards. He told of the clearest of these visions and described a location they had recently found. The city beneath the sands. Beyond that city he told, waited soul shards that they must find.