Part 16: The Distinguished Gentleman from Skara Brae

From The World of Dreams Manual

WoD History

Part 16: The Distinguished Gentleman from Skara Brae

The Grand Council is a governing body that has been with us since before the Refugees first arrived from the void. Although they provide representation for the city-states, they have rarely been more than an advising body for the monarch. As mentioned previously, the Council was basically impotent while Lissar was held prisoner by Gizash. The most significant thing they have done in recent memory was deciding the matter of succession which placed Lissar on the throne.

Ah, but this is a time of change. Following her imprisonment, Lissar was convinced by the Council to pass laws which would increase their authority in the event of her becoming incapable of ruling. With her dead, these laws made the Grand Council the de facto rulers of the realm. Properly advised, this might not have been a bad thing. Unfortunately, Aristotle, an advisor of Lissar and her father, resigned after several clashes with members of the Council. Bishop Duncan, perhaps the only man with influence enough to steer the Council right, was preoccupied with a variety of issues.

The new authority held by the Council was a lure for a new breed of power hungry councilors. In Skara Brae, Councilor Samuel was elected to serve as their representative. As a citizen of the city at that time, my disgust at this was matched only by my disgust at seeing British step from the portal.

Like the other councilors, Samuel had an agenda. He had a notable contempt for tradition, wishing to bring the realm into a modern time. During the protests, he had opposed the Royalists. The death of Lissar was a step in the right direction, as far as he was concerned, since it led to the embrace of democratic values. The contempt of tradition extended to other institutions besides the monarchy. Dismantling the Queen's knights was not feasable just yet, but disbanding the Skara Brae Rangers was within his grasp.

The ranks of the Rangers had shrunken over the years. The influx of heroes meant the protection the Rangers provided was unneeded- at one time, it would have been the Rangers who led the defense of Cove during the Orc War, but now individuals made the difference. With few allies in the Council and little to show in the way of accomplishments, many accepted their disbandment as inevitable. They could only count the days until their guild house was closed forever.

A few were determined to fight for the existence of the Rangers. They were further motivated because they had found evidence which seemed to show a link between Samuel and an evil cabal of necromancers. They knew they needed further proof, but they also needed to slow down Samuel. Hearing that the councilor would be touring the outpost of Cove, a number travelled there and took Samuel captive.

The news of the kidnapping spread quickly, and a small army of heroes descended on Cove. In short time, the rangers involved were dead and Samuel was returned to Skara Brae. Once there, he offended many of his saviors with his plan to disband the knights after the rangers. From his view, this would not take long- the rogue rangers that kidnapped him was the death knell for the organization.

The Rangers did not go quietly. Resistance sprang up in various areas, put down by the Council Guards or various heroes. Through it all, a number of letters were recovered by heroes, one mentioning "The Coven", others speaking of the connection with the necromantic cabal, all signed with a stylized letter "S".

Ironically, Samuel was connected to a necromantic cabal, but not in the way most assumed. They feared him, and feared his assistant, Sarah, more. The necromancers wanted Samuel silenced before he could send the Council Guards against them. Also, if Samuel was silenced, the hope was Sarah would be weakened. To this end, Samuel's son was kidnapped by the necromancers. Heroes attempted to free the boy, but were too late to save him. They did succeed in destroying the band of necromancers lairing in Deceit.

The loss of his son was a devestating blow to Samuel. He might have recovered if not for the revelation of his assistant's true identity soon thereafter. Threatened with scandal and a possible impeachment hearing, Samuel retired to private life.

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