Dear Citizens of Travance,

Against the policies traditionally held by my fellow Hunter House Elders, I hope that you do not mind me writing to you personally and honestly about the events that transpired this last moon within your Baronial Proper. It is against protocol and with my sincerest gratitude that I put pen to paper, for each of you has become part of an historic day to be praised for generations to come. It will take some time for me to recover from the events that transpired this last moon, and I am sure it will be the same for many of you as well. Nevertheless, I wished to take a moment to explain the events that occurred as I understand them, so that each of you may be fully aware of the role in which you played.

First, some history: From the time I was a young hunter, many years ago, I have looked to the legendary hero Laurent Belmont as my inspiration. I made it my life's work to realize his theories and turn the Belmont House towards its original mission – to defeat not only the True Warlock menace, but all demons and denizens of the Abyssal Plane. Laurent believed that by bringing together three objects - one whose location he had never found, one later interred with him in his tomb, and one locked away in an undisclosed location – he could find a way to break the ritual Seal protecting demons from the effects of positive energy. The first object, the Amulet ("the Soul of Raqoztl"), I knew to be the hardest and most dangerous to retrieve. Through a miraculous vision and the discovery of a corroborating manuscript early last year, its location was determined to be in the depths of the Chaos Wastes. Our expedition took months of treacherous archaeological research, but resulted in victory. The Amulet was ours but not without a price - in an act of desperation while being beset by Abyssal forces, I had no choice but to put the corrupted gem around my neck, allowing it to bond itself to my very soul. Not knowing how much time I had or the effects this might have on my constitution, we knew from this point we had to move quickly. This past fall, with the help of your local Hunters, we retrieved the second of the objects from Laurent’s tomb - the Circlet which he wore his entire life ("the Mind of Raqoztl"). Here we also found the means to locate the last of the items, the Thread ("the Body of Raqoztl"), which according to legend bound in place a great lycanthropic beast known mysteriously as "The Father of the Menagerie". We also found, through visions from the Circlet, that we would be forced to wait two months to retrieve this final piece, for the door of its chamber would only open on the first full moon, the Wolf Moon, of the new year.

This brings us to this past moon, when I arrived with my closet disciples. My condition was poor due to the corruption of the Amulet, and I apologize for the unbecoming state in which I appeared. As you probably know, we set out to retrieve the Thread, thereby freeing the lycanthrope as an unfortunate but necessary consequence. Unbeknownst to our party, the Queen of the Unseelie Court of Dark Faeries and her minions had discovered our plans, and had used our quest for their own machinations. With powerful magicks far beyond any I've ever seen in all my studies of sorcery, Queen Hyporia had switched the prison we sought with a room on the sixteenth floor of your Inverted Tower, and that room with a place in her realm guarded against her kind. What we found at the site was not the Thread and a great lycanthrope, but an Iron Vault containing a powerful magical weapon called the Mortalis. We got away from the dark faeries mostly unscathed, but the damage of bringing this object out into our plane was done, and we still had not accomplished our holy quest for the Thread.

It became clear the following day that a mission would need to be made into your Inverted Tower at nightfall to at last retrieve the Thread. Maintaining such an unnatural shift between the planes required an extraordinary amount of personal power on the part of the Queen however, and because of that she had merged the land around the Tower with the realm of the faeries. Such magicks are dangerous to our plane of existence, and while our group retrieved our objective, the rest of Travance was tasked with restoring the land to its natural state, and thereby allowing the rooms to return to their rightful locations. With the full moon above us, our two groups descended on the site of your Inverted Tower. Our group retrieved the Thread and found the lycanthrope, Tanith by name, starved and broken from centuries of imprisonment. Many hunters broke off in chase, but I found the dark energies of the Amulet had truly taken me in the presence of the Thread, and I could only watch from afar as Raqoztl’s spirit forced me to bring the three objects together, allowing him to take an incarnate form. I am aware of little of the time that followed, but I know the town fought the great demon bravely, finally taking him down. This destruction fulfilled the prophecies and our mission, for now, finally, the Seal had been broken.

Travance, you have played part in a momentous event. I would apologize for having brought you into the affairs of my House and those that follow Laurent Belmont’s mission, but without your direct involvment, we would not  have succeeded. Thank you for all you have done not only for Hunters, but for all who walk this plane. If you ever have need of me, I am not hard to reach. Stand tall, be brave, and together we shall wipe the scourge of demon-kind from the face of Arawyn!

In Galladel’s Eternal Name,

House Elder Evelyne Laurent-Belmont

2013-jan-epilouge

 

 

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