After Osric and Zelik decided to pass on further investigation of the complex under the temple in Hewflore, Zephyros decided to focus on getting various other errands completed so he and his apprentices could relax in Taygle’s End and study in Garnier’s library. Before leaving town he stopped in at the Hewflore curiosity shop where he sold the Rod of Chains. As it turned out the patron was also interested in the Horn of Sea Summoning. The 5,000gp he sold it for would cover all the upcoming research; his mind was already working on the Summon Hero spell he hoped to master.
While in Hewflore he gathered his men, Ansger, Athelwine, Xenocrates, Henryk, Dudda, Wilburg and Cenwulf. “Men, please spend what remaining time we have here in Hewflore by preparing yourselves for the work we have before us. Go to the smiths and procure fine weapons and armor. Pick up supplies such that you are prepared to survive in the wilderness and in the darkest of caverns, for we know not where will be off to next, but you can be rest assured it will not be in the comfort of an inn. Xenocrates and Dudda, I appreciate your leadership in the ways of harvesting components from the creatures we encounter. Let’s please pass this knowledge onto Cenwulf and Wilburg while they also study the ways of healing, such that we can together we can pursue the craft of transmogrification and crossbreeds. In time we will develop our laboratory and library where we can perfect the craft. Additionally, I have collected a great list of spells for us to study together and expand our grimoires, so after we are done scribing we will agree on which spells we will retain in memory to benefit the Tarchoony Brotherhood. Once we have gathered everything we need, let us prepare the boats for departure to Taygle’s End.”
Once in Taygle’s End Zephyros caught back up with Garnier. “Ever heard of the ‘Horned Society?’ ‘Scarlet Brotherhood?’ No? Mmm. You don’t want to. You do? Well, I’m telling you that you don’t. Bad news, Zephyron, er, Zephrykos. Er? What’s your name again? Haha. Just joking.”
Zephyros replied, “Well Garnier, I have much to learn from you it seems. I’m afraid I’m not from these parts, remember what I told you about the portal, so you have me at a disadvantage with respect to the ‘Horned Society’ and the ‘Scarlet Brotherhood.’ Please enlighten me so I can be careful not to offend the wrong person during my travels.”
Garnier’s eyes narrowed and his face took a stern visage. “Zephyros, they seek mages like yourself; offer them power, greatness all in the name of chaos. It’s a dark path son, one you must avoid.”
“What do they do if you decline to join them?” asked Zephyros.
“You end up six feet under,” retorted Garnier.
“Ah I see, well I’m but a simple ship’s captain, I only dabble in the arts,” Zephyros said with a smile.
“I’m afraid you’ll need to do better than that Zephyros, word of your exploits has traveled farther then you think. Prepare yourself. And if a wise man may pass on some wisdom, stay on the path of law and order Zephyros.”
“Aye Garnier, I appreciate your wisdom. One more question, do you think these two groups are recruiting so heavily because of the threat of war? Another war of the wands if you will?”
“You’re a thoughtful man Zephyros, those are my thoughts as well,” answered Garnier.
Much was discussed over the weeks spent together researching in Garnier’s library. As it turned out Zephyros’s first research project was a failure. The only good news is that he knows the information that is needed for Summon Hero is not contained within Garnier’s library, so he will be keeping an eye out for some books on the subject of summoning. Aside from that, the scribing, learning and memorizing of the new spells went well for Zephyros, Xenocrates, Cenwulf and Wilburg. The spell signatures for his new spells are as follows:
Fireball – A trireme appears over the right shoulder of the caster and the catapult on its bow fires upon command a small pea-sized glowing orange ball. Upon reaching the target it bursts into a huge ball of fire, similar to that used in naval warfare.
Slow – This spell is very subtle, in that no visual component is noticed, safe that upon completion of the final word time stands still for an instant for all those around the caster. The next moment time returns to normal for all of those except those targeted and they see the world passing them much faster, although in reality they are acting slower, it’s just how our minds work.
Skinchange – Upon completion of the final word, having already decided which animal the caster wished to turn into, there is a slight whoosh sound along with a puff of black mist which immediately dissipates as the caster takes the new form. Should the caster change form again the whoosh and black mist occur again. There is no distinguishing the animal form from that of the real thing, in fact it is real, or is it?