A Deadly Game

Date: 10/01/2017 at 22:49
From: Anonymous
To : Everyone
Subj: A Deadly Game

It was on the arrival of the month of Scarlatan, in the year 753 when a cry went up in Delos, echoing throughout the minds of all attuned to the Soulrealms. Eithne, the long-serving sweets merchant, lay brutally slain, the identity of her killer unknown. The first adventurer to respond was Xaden Ashture, joined soon afterwards by Cyrenians, his fellows of the Dawnspear, and even a few stray Eleusians.

Greater was the shock when chilling laughter echoed forth from Death's Throne as Ugrach, Lord of the Undead, denied the gift of resurrection to Eithne. A fierce discussion ensued over the killer's identity and what could be done to discover the culprit.

An idea to consult with the mad coroner of Creville Asylum, Ulthor, brought him by guarded escort to the scene. There, in his eccentric fashion, he investigated the corpse under the watchful gaze of adventurers, Swordmaster Colbey, and the arriving Dauntless, Lafrin and Ophal. Truly, Ulthor proclaimed, the killer was a prodigy.

Yet even as the examination and discussion continued, a second ripple was felt in those present. Danae, the beautiful atavian of Genji was the next to fall in a single, clean, and efficient strike from above. As she too was denied a chance to return by the Finality, the quick-minded Solfege Ashaela noted the green eyes shared by both victims, while Mathilda Nyxillum pointed out the hallmarks of a Two Arts weapon.

An expedition to Murad followed, though the master smith was unable to provide much information. Kaden, Halos, Aralaya, Vender, and others began searching mercenary encampments for clues to the one who might be able to accomplish such an act.

A few short days later, the killer struck again, slaughtering a village woman of Jaru among the dockyards, and leaving the corpse to be found by the pursuing adventurers. As mocking letters were delivered by Delosian doves to the would-be detectives, Talamond deduced a word: Oniar.

Kaden sought out Galia to trace the letters to their source. All seemed quiet, but the letters had promised the game was only halfway done, and that rubies were preferable to pearls. For a month, the concerned citizens of Sapience sent out warnings to varied denizens as they desperately searched for the killer.

Shock reared its head once more when at month's end, Carmina of Tasur'ke fell in the street just outside her home. Yet again Ulthor provided insightful evidence on the corpse and the deadly skill of Carmina's killer, a vicious X of crossed blades marking the exsanguinated body for all to see while a despondent Erdan sobbed uncontrollably beside his wife.

As the adventurers dispersed, the odd couple of Kasa Lighthawk and Alyana Thorngage joined forces to investigate Oniar. In time they discovered, upon questioning diverse inhabits of Delos and the nearby area, that a secluded mansion on the city's outskirts might be their goal. Finding its hidden entrance they were subsequently greeted with two options, the young Peler Oniar or the Two Arts practitioner, and gardener, Eadam.

A fierce questioning ensued as the pair attempted to discern the culprit. Alyana relentlessly interrogated the standoffish Eadam while Kasa spoke with the pleasantly accommodating Peler. When Alyana, frustrated with the caretaker's non-answers, engaged Eadam in battle, joined by Kasa, the gardener fell upon the roses he loved so dearly.

And Peler, deeming his game won with an innocent man slain in his place, shed his unassuming facade and engaged the now-gathered adventurers in a brief but supremely deadly conflict. Ending with Kasa and Kaden dead and the unveiled killer departing to parts unknown, his final letter was a mockery and salutation to those who had failed to stop him.

Summary: An unknown killer brutally slaughtered four women across the continent of Sapience, playing a twisted game as he left hidden clues behind with each victim. Though some quick detective work allowed Achaeans to narrow things down to his secluded mansion on the outskirts of Delos, they were unable to discern the truth of the matter before the caretaker was wrongly slain. Peler Oniar, unmasked, escaped to parts unknown, leaving behind as many questions as answers.

Penned by My hand on the 6th of Ero, in the year 753 AF.