As morning breaks, the party awakened to the bustle of activity in The Princely city of Illmor, and headed upstairs to greet their new host. After some discussion and learning about the various districts of the city itself, Nephera and Avery set off to meet with the princes in council. Eledhron elected to remain behind, as has much to catch up on. Plus, he added it’s best if he keeps his head down for now, as he ‘isn’t supposed to be in the city, you know’. Hurendel also chose to remain in the humble comforts of The Sleeping Beggar, rather than expose herself to the discomforts of court. Seeing as she is young, naiive, and has a serving girl’s background, the two decide it’s for the best and head out to make their appeal.
Arriving to meet Ellariel Umeer, the duo are led into a chamber with three finely wrought thrones arrayed beneath a high arching ceiling, with tapestries hanging above that seem to depict events in the history of the city unfurled throughout the room in a variety of colors. These are the seats of The House of Llani, The House of Bacot, and The House of Aunheath, whose Lords are Prince Celador Enedras, Prince Thilonde Enedras, and Prince Malgonar Enedras respectively.
After some formalities, the two heroes recount their harrowing experiences over the past week, which was met with varying response from each prince. It appears that these hobgoblins are indeed of the Severed clan, and present a much greater threat to the Kingdom of The Carok Mountains than previously believed. While all three princes seem intent to squash this intrusion on their lands, each has some hesitance and restrictions on their abilities to do so at this time, and they turned to discussing the feasibility of the project.
It was not long before the discussion became heated, with each prince showing varying degrees of frustration, concern, and anger. The largest point of contention turned on the lack of any word from Carstin Spire – established specifically to prevent such an invasion. There had been no warning or word of an attack; could it be because they spire had fallen, or that the hobgoblins maneuvered around it undetected? Could it be that the Crimson Princess, Malgonar’s own daughter, could have failed? Perhaps she had even been killed in action?
Before things could get too unseemly for guests in the court, Ellariel escorted Nephera and Avery out to the parlor to await further discussion from the princes. During this time they weighed their options with which prince to appeal to directly, how, and why, and after some time settled on Prince Malgonar Enedras due to his popularity with the people, his skilled forces, and the fact that he had personal investment in the fight now that the fate of his daughter was uncertain. This decision was not made lightly, however, as the two each primarily preferred a different prince and had to settle on the Lord Encarmine.
Eventually, They were able to meet with Prince Malgador personally in his own antechamber. Our heroes were led down a separate hallway from the parlor, off into another wing of the palace. The walls, rich with silk tapestries and warm dark wood eventually led to a large room with a vaulted ceiling. Several dozen candles and cushioned chairs dotted the expanse, and glasses of wine were already poured, awaiting the prince’s guests.
After some further discussion, Malgonar revealed that he had already accounted for the possibility of such a hobgoblin attack, but needed a few more facts before he could feel certain that taking his planned actions was the right course. He told them to meet with his man Oron Ritham and gather information from the townspeople to see how receptive the city was to waging a war, so soon after their last – a mere 50 years.
The party then returned to the inn to contemplate what they had learned, and prepare for their mission.