Night Terrors

(Mike and Chad couldn't make it, Ryan ran Cyrus, Jim ran Silvaris as an NPC. As I have said, the character of the Marches and many NPCs' names are stolen from Lois McMaster Bujold's excellent fantasy novel, The Curse of Chalion. A provincar is the ruler of a province. The king and queen are the roya and royina, prince and princess are royse and royesse)

After the fall of Gotorget (Storm the Castle), the Free Marches army moves in and takes control, the party is occupied helping clean out the last monsters and traps. Jozan and Kiriana are particularly busy reconsecrating the chapel to Tyr after the Liartians killed and tortured the resident priest on his own altar. Fenric Teleports to Opal to construct a new wand. Marshall dy Yarrin moves in makes the castle his new headquarters, he is accompanied by an "aide", a figure in an all covering black hood, gloves and face mask.

Over a week after the fall of Gotorget, dy Yarrin summons Jozan and Antonio to his office. He invites them to sit down and his aide pours them all a very expensive wine. dy Yarrin begins by asking Jozan if he would ever resign from the priesthood, if he had ever considered doing anything else with his life. Jozan says no, the priesthood is what he always wanted. dy Yarrin explains that he has good news and bad. Their mother, Beatriz dy Santiago escaped from their home before it was attacked; she has been staying with relatives. However, their father, the provincar Lupe dy Santiago, and their older brother Fernando, were both killed in the fighting. Which means Antonio is now the provincar dy Santiago. He asks Antonio to swear loyalty to the crown of the Marches, they will have a ceremony tomorrow, Jozan will officiate as the highest ranking priest in the area. The marshall explains he is acting as regent until the new king is crowned. They ask about dy Yarrin's mystery aide, the marshall explains he is Carlos dy Labran, a distant cousin of the former royina, he speaks with a southern Marches nobleman's accent. He has a number of scars that he does not wish to show, that is why he is hooded.
They also discuss the war's progress. With the capture of Gotorget, Free Marches forces are now hitting the Pargunese positions in the occupied north hard. Marches morale is on an upswing, resistance to the invaders is climbing in the north.
When they leave, Antonio shakes Carlos' hand, but feels something is not right. Carlos seems out of place with proper ceremony and has a weak grip. The party gets together and discusses the mystery, Jozan and Antonio cannot remember hearing of the royina having a scarred cousin. Speculations fly and the party becomes suspicious, mostly feeding off of each other's questions. They decide that Jozan will use a Commune prayer to ask his god's advice. In order to get extra power for the prayer, Antonio offers the Axe of Wounding they captured as a sacrifice. Through his questions, Jozan realizes that "Carlos" is really Carmen dy Chalion, the youngest royesse and the only surviving heir to the throne. The royal family was supposed to have been wiped out by assassins at the beginning of the war, Carmen must have escaped and has been in hiding under dy Yarrin's protection.
A few nights later, the party is awakened by alarms outside. They rush to see what is going on, Jozan uses his armor to polymorph into a dragon and flies out of the castle to check. A group of barbed devils are on the wall, tearing their way through the troops. He flies down and attacks one. Fenric, Silvaris, Antonio and Kiriana are little behind, Cyrus spots a dark clad figure swinging over the roof onto the balcony outside dy Yarrin's suite. The figure fires a crossbow dart at them, Cyrus uses Disintegrate on him. The run to the marshall's suite and knock the door, the marshall opens with sword and shield in hand and tells them to guard the door. Antonio, Fenric and Kiriana head outside to see what is going on, Cyrus and Leander stay to guard the door. Antonio, Fenric and Kiriana run outside and join in the battle against the devils. Two more dark figures attack Cyrus and Leander. They exchange crossbow bolts and a Psionic Blast, but both Cyrus and Leander are knocked out by poisoned bolts, one of the assassins is still alive. Outside they finish off the devils and begin treating the wounded. They hear the crack of a lightning spell inside dy Yarrin's suite and run back upstairs. Inside, they find the marshall and his "aide" hiding behind an overturned desk, Carlos' gloves are smoking and the last assassin is dead on the floor from electrical burns. Antonio remembers that Carmen had been considered something of a "bookworm". Apparently she is a wizard.

Quotes and smart remarks
Jim "You know you're uptight when the paladin tells you to relax."

Konrad "How do you get blood out of suede?"

Konrad "Have you found Tyr?"
Kevin "Why, is he lost?"

JoAnne to Konrad and Matt "Is that the smartest thing to do?"
Ryan "They're not the smartest people."

Konrad after his Commune prayer "Have you ever been touched by a god in places you don't want to be touched?"
Matt "I've been to church."