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Mysterious Circumstances

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Cerys had seen the splatter inside the purse somewhere.  But, she couldn't immediately place it out of the blue.  Placing the Gwyddbwyll Gwenddoleu ap Ceidio only served to furhter make her certain of the magical nature of whatever was inside the purse.  The rest of the purse was filled with mundane purse items.  A wallet (identifying one Miss Alicia Jones), makeup, checks, a calculator, and a variety of other things.

 

Their server arrived with their various orders.  Including Thaelia's large anchovy and pepperoni pizza.  As the Demigoddess bit into the pizza Blodeuwedd was instantly hit with memory.  Blood, the ichor that flowed through Thaelia's veins had left its share of golden blood splatter in the wreck room when the Glamazon trained.

 

But, the order's business did not involve an Olympian artifact and the creature who appeared was clearly out of Celtic Mythology a creature that appeared in both the Irish and Welsh half of the tales...

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The Greek God’s had wisely kept away from the Wales to keep away from the Orders reach, and even in the rest of the UK they used proxies to conduct their business. Even though the Order still instructed it agents in Greek legends.

 

“It’s Ichor the blood that flows in all god’s veins, and demi-god and right down the line. Each line is different but I believe gold is that of those of the Greek Gods. I don’t think it’s just the Welsh deities are involved here.â€

 

She sipped her coffee with a small amount of satisfaction at her deductions.

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Thaelia stared at the purse.  Her focus returning to her pizza, afterwards.  "The woman could be a goddess, or a shape shifted god, or a demigod, or even an Immortal.  Whatever she is, it would take a strong connection to one's divine side.  When I was younger, I bled red."  She described showing no outright concern for this unknown distant relative.  At least not the same amount of concern as one would show for someone they knew.  

 

Because, at the end of the day.  The woman was still a stranger until they had more information.  "We could perhaps scry with more ichor?"  She asked the table.  Not addressing where they would get more godly blood.  It was a question with an obvious answer.

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Lynn frowned as the two teens discussed the mysterious ichor stains, thinking back to her experiences on the train. "So we have a wounded Olympian disappearing from a crowded train, right after a Celtic spirt of ill omen appears on a nearby hilltop, in a town where I'm picking up a book somehow linked to the fae; boy, when you say it out loud, it seems a little far-fetched." Her comment sounded lighthearted, but her expression was clearly troubled. "Has there been any animosity beween pantheons recently? Is that even a thing?"

 

Addressing Thaelia's question, she shrugged as she raised her coffee cup. "Well the purse was on the train, which is now long gone...but if our Miss Jones was removed from the train car, possibly by force, there might be more blood on the platform or somewhere else nearby. I might be able to track her by scent, assuming it's not too muddled by all the other foot traffic."

Edited by Heritage

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“Their influence was minimal in the whole of United Kingdom, and they never came into Wales.†there was a hint of pride in her voice “When they did they tended to cooperate with each others, not that there wasn’t any bad blood. At least back in the Iron Age a lot of people from lots of places have come to live there, I’m sure such a combination exist somewhere. Though certain factor’s would stop there feuding on UK soil.â€

 

She sounded rather certain on that last fact though she wouldn’t elaborate instead returning to her coffee.

 

“It’s a good a place to start as any. If everyone has finished their meal.â€

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Lynn drained her cup of coffee and signalled the waiter. "Can we get the check and some to-go boxes for this?" She indicated the rest of Thaelia's pizza.

 

The bookstore owner returned the purse to her Vault and paid the check,  and the trio was soon back outside on their way back to the station; once they were back on the platform, she began to furtively sniff the air, hoping to catch a whiff of ichor.

 

"The things we have to do for this job. I've had to do this as a dog a few times to do this properly; y'know, keeping my nose to the ground?" She shook her head. "Reaaaally hope I don't have to do that today."

Edited by Heritage

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GM

Grim's nose leads the group down a winding path through the town.  Coming to a close when they reach a dilapidated manor on the edge of Mystery.  The house was an old victorian style building with a white picket fence.  The sign indicated that it had been seized by the bank at some point.  But, there had clearly been no interest in selling the place.  Or at least no interest in buying it.

When they stepped on the grounds, Lynn bent forward and retched.  Her body violently reacting in a manner similar to when she tries to eat human food.  Nausea and headache.  That's when she saw him in the distance.  Colt standing in the woods just behind the house.  Only he was younger than when she last left him.  About as young as when they left this world together.  The person who looked like Colt turned around and disappeared into the trees without a trace.

Cerys and Thaelia hadn't seen the figure.  They were too busy looking over Lynn.  No one to confirm whether what she saw was even there.

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The house looked like something out of a Stephen King novel, which made sense; this whole place felt like it was drenched in Gothic overtones. As they got closer, a wave of violent nausea swept over Lynn, and she doubled over and threw up her coffee all over her boots. When she looked up, she saw...him!

 

"What the f###...did you guys see that? That was-" But then she held up her hands and shook her head. "Wait a sec. There are things that look other things; heck, I'm a thing that looks like other things!" The changeling turned to look at Cerys. "There are names for them, right? Doppelgangers, fetches, that sort of thing?" She reached out and pointed towards the woods. "Because I know I didn't just see my late husband walk into those trees, right? Right? 'Cause that would be highly unlikely."

Edited by Heritage

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Thaelia looked down at Lynn worried.  She had no idea what Lynn was going on about.  Every time she looked back up into the area she was pointing at it appeared empty.  But, Fetch were another bit of Celtic folklore as far as Thaelia could recall.  The second they'd have seen today.  With the notable difference of being on the Irish side of Celtic mix.

Though again Thaelia had seen anything.  And it wasn't as if she could recognize Lynn's late husband even if she had.  "Do you need to rest for a moment?"  The Atlantean princess asked concerned.  For some odd reason the vomit actually looked like coffee rather than an odd black mush.  The smell was odd.  Plant like.  

But they were near so much greenery, Thaelia wrote it off as the environment.

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“I’m not a true master of occult lore but I do know that sometime things escape ever the most scrupulous esoteric lore. There is a remote chance that it is the ghost or fetch sent to aid or warn you about something. Then again it could be some spirit taking a familiar form that’s trying to tell you something.” her voice had softened as she spoke, make her accent more obvious than normal, being very aware of how sensitive the subject could become.

She watched Lynn body language for any reaction, even though she found her body language slightly off from the norm.

“Whatever it is it means something magical is or has been about the area, we should be careful about what we see from here on in.”

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Lynn nodded; when she spoke, she sounded like her mind was a thousand miles away. "Yeah, okay, let's...keep our eyes peeled and all that. For signs of trouble." She carefully opened the gate and began to make her way towards the back of the house, all her heightened sense on alert; she sniffed the air a few times, and tipped her head from side to side, straining to smell a whiff of well-worn leather or hear the jingle and creak of a holster.

 

It was almost ten years now, wasn't it? So hard to keep the timelines of two world straight in your head. And yet now to see him again, as he looked around the time they'd first left this world...it was just too painful to think about.

Edited by Heritage

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GM

Grimalkin, Glamazon, and Blodeuwedd stepped inside the large manor without a second appearance from Grim's past.  The harrowing staircase in front of the entrance was questionable at best.  Actually missing a few steps allowing them to hear a creaking sound from the cellar below.  The living room, like much of the rest of the house, was covered in cobwebs.  Furniture was covered by a combination of plastic and dust.

Going to left ed to a locked room.  To the right an open view of the kitchen and dining room.  An area that looked equally worn to the living room.  Upstairs there were presumably three or four rooms. and the entrance to the attic.  Next to the stairs was indoor cellar access.  Which didn't seem outright locked so much as stuck close together through the wear and tear of age.

The house looked completely abandoned.  And aside from the lack of attention it had received over the years it did not seem too notable of a hiding place.

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When an young agent was ready to go out in the world the Order would send then through ancient rituals to Caer Arianrhod to meet the goddess that dwelt within that Castle who would tell the young agent about their possible future, there was always much debate among the Order scholars but most believed that they went to see the actual goddess so important to the Order. Blodeuwedd always had the worse of times when visiting Arianrhod having the name of the woman that led to her downfall.

Blodeuwedd thoughts drifted to that moment as she saw the symbols of Gwydion scattered around the room, brother of Arianrhod and the god who made the original Blodeuwedd. The Order discourage the worship of the Celtic deities, they had been more trouble than they were worth, but she personally considered Gwydion a guardian spirit of sorts.

“Do you see those they’re symbols of Gwydion all around this place, it would explain all the Welsh deities involvement in all this.”

 

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Lynn walked around the house, doing her best not to touch anything, both to avoid damaging any evidence as well as out of fear of vermin and icky bugs. "My readings into the arcane sadly didn't go very far into Welsh mythology, I'm afraid; mostly I was reading about spirits, monsters and other worlds. What's Gwydion the god of?"

 

When she got close to the cellar door, the changeling suddenly covered her face with her hand as she nearly retched again. "Dear God, can you smell that? I think something died downstairs, or maybe several somethings." She met the eyes of the two young women with her. "Oh man, I really hope it's not zombies; I hate fighting zombies!" She looked down at her hand as she spoke absentmindedly. "Takes forever to get that crud out from under your fingernails..."

Edited by Heritage

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"Enchantments, Illusions, magic, poetry, a warrior god depending on who you ask.  One of the five sons of Dôn."  Now, Thaelia wasn't an expert on the Tuatha de Danann .  And Dôn hadn't even received real mention through the Mabinogion.  But, as a Sea god's daughter, she'd be bereft if she didn't at least keep some knowledge on a goddess that some considered a sea deity.  Especially with an eclectic spiritual upbringing as far as sea gods were concerned.  

What little knowledge she did have on Gwydion, suddenly made her less comfortable with the idea of being surrounded by so many trees.  It also made her highly curious.  "Do you believe this has to do with the artifact you wish to retrieve?"  Glamazon openly asked Blodeuwedd, expecting her classmate to have figured something out with her earlier declaration of the Celtic connection.

Edited by HG Morrison

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“He also created the original Blodeuwedd, you could say we’re related in some way.” he tone was fairly deadpan about the whole thing “Unfortunately these things are hardly ever just coincidences we’ve obviously been drawn into something related to Gwydion and his kin.” she didn’t sound overly happy at this fact.  

“What do you think should we see what horrors lurk below before we find out more about this artifact that’s drawn us here?”

She didn’t feel in enough danger to drawn Dyrnwyn yet, though she kept her hand on it’s hilt just in case.

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Lynn thought about it for a few seconds, then shrugged. "When I clean up the bathroom, I always start with the toilet first; I figure get the nastiest job out of the way right off the bat, then everything else will seem that much easier." She flicked out her hands, and a terrifying set of claws appeared on the ends of her fingers, each one formed out of pure, inky-black shadow. A wisp of vapor trailed from the tip of her nose as she sealed her nostrils against the stink, and then she crept over to the cellar door and gently wrapped her fingers around the doorknob.

 

Looking over her shoulder, she grinned and gave the two teens a big thumbs up as she murmured, "Are you kids ready to have some fun?" And with that, she slowly pulled the door open.

Edited by Heritage

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GM

The basement was anything but welcome.  The room had a toxic scent, a miasma of despair reaching out into every pore.  At the root of the uneasiness was a giant snake.  An Adder to be specific.  Its body stretched out from wall to wall.  The snake's head danced around the room hissing at the the three women threateningly.

At the base of the snake's body was a cocoon like structure.  Possibly an egg of sorts, but it was hard to tell as its tail was coiled completely around the structure.  Whatever the creature had in its possession the body language being given off was of someone protecting something.  Suddenly and without warning the snake's head snapped forward.  Attempting to snap its head at the heroines.  Pulling back upon the discovery it was barely out of reach.  Returning to its defensive stance, the snake made it clear that it would make a move if they dared step inside.

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Reading the creatures moment Blodeuwedd was moving even before she was quite aware what she was doing. As the creature shot forward Dyrnwyn shot out of its scabbard and she struck towards the snake, whist avoiding being hit herself or striking her allies.


Standing back she took a defensive pose a determined look on her face as Dyrnwyn eldritch fire casting a blue glow through the darkened room.

“It seems our welcome is no more warm than it was before. I don’t need to tell you that snakes are normally a sign of trouble.”

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"Yeah, that's pretty much universal!" Lynn's voice sounded a bit odd with her nostrils sealed shut; Iit would be almost comical if they weren't in mortal peril.

 

Without hesitation, the changeling jumped down the steps to get closer to the great snake, her claws slashing out towards its scaly hide.

Edited by Heritage

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GM

 

The Adder hissed out in pain after Grimalkin's claws tore into its flesh.  Extending its body it attempted to wrap itself around Lynn.  Hoping to constrict her avenue of escape, but Grimalkin was too quick on her feet.  Diving out of the way before the giant snake could grasp hold of the fey touched heroine.

 

The massive snake's head danced along the ground threateningly.  Clearly not demotivated by the failed attempt at capturing Grimalkin.  The Adder seemed intent on proving Cerys' warning of snakes being a bad sign true.  Baring its long fangs.  It was rather obvious that with another pass the creature would not be stopping at trying to squeeze around Lynn.  No, the snake was poised to bite.

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Glam leapt through the air and grabbed the Adder by the scales on its head.  Immediately after she slammed her own head into the massive slithering beast.  The collision caused a massive a thundering noise.  An aggressive hiss escaping the giant snake's breath.  But, it did not so much as budge.

 

"Yes, snakes are bad.  Vile serpents."  Glamazon added to the conversation.  Not clear on whether she was drawing on some sort of reference to Lemurian bioengineering.  Or classical mythology.  Both seemed to apply to the situation as Lynn said snakes were pretty much a bad sign in storytelling.  One had to feel bad for the one snake controller or snake totem hero in the world out there if they existed that was.

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Blodeuwedd took a moment to assess the situation watching the gentle undulations of the serpent as it moved around, most of her training had been to fight humanoid but they'd had covered reptiles even though wyverns were pretty rare and dragons normally the Orders allies. The trick was making sure the bit she struck was the bits the serpent needed badly for it's continued existence.

 

When the opportunity struck she leapt forward to strike, the sword leaving a trail of Eldrich fire in its wake.

 

It already feels like we've already spent to much time fighting this beasts, let's deal with it with some haste.

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GM

 

The Giant Adder's head was cleaved clean off by the swift movement of Blodeuwedd's blade.  The flames searing its flesh revealing not a skeleton beneath but instead a small pebble with a hole running through the middle.  Or an Adder stone as it was commonly known.  As the three magically inclined heroines were aware such stone could be formed from hardened snakes’ saliva.  Something that would easily occur when a cluster of snakes would wind themselves together to form a living ball or egg.  Known for their magical and healing properties their rarity often meant a sign of good luck. 

 

At least when you didn't have to fight a giant snake to acquire one.  Finding a hag stone was a sign of good fortune, but needing one was the sign that one was dealing either with evil witchcraft, spirits, or fae.  Whatever the case, judging by the egg in the center of the room it was clear that someone was actively making adder stones somehow.  Guarding the source of their stones with a transmogrified giant snake.

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With a totally indulgent flourish Blodeuwedd sheathed Dyrnwyn, before picking up the stone and throwing it up into the air and catching it.

 

"Well, we know why they set a guarding here." Blodeuwedd mused in her soft Welsh-accented voice "But the real questions is why is this all here in the first place? If you have any ideas then I'm more than happy to listen to your theories."

 

Whilst she had some training in the occult arts she was at heart a warrior, and so was more than happy to defer to the real experts.

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