OOC: I had to skip a few days our of necessity. We could either say that Sage Advisor was unconscious for that time as his system took quite a shock, or we could just ignore it...
Somewhere in the city surround Justice Keep
February 7, 795 TSR
Sage's eyes fluttered open. He didn't have to look to see the mage-chains that were binding his hands together and him to his seat. He could probably bust through them, but that girl was standing right in front of him. And she'd beaten him earlier, which meant that she was either a walker or she'd somehow learned how to use the Xidanai.
"They're a temporary precaution and I'll remove them after I explain a few things to you, at which point they should no longer be necessary. My name is Kiara. Kiaralan Endorian Enten Zcyllis, First-Guard of the Order of Whitespace, also known as the Temporal Guard, or, as I think they are on this particular plane, the Náleclan. I don't imagine you've heard of us -- we're not the most conspicuous lot, but I'm sure you remember the one member of my brethren that has paid you a visit already. His name was Solice Aerasus, and in approx. year 785 by your Talismanian calendar. I believe he traded you a certain wand in return for which you built him a house. This was soon after you 'recovered' from your bout of 'Goblin Fever.'"
Sage remembered, though he couldn't imagine why, excepting the incredibly perplexity of the whole affair. The man had been...odd, but...powerful.
"Yes, that's exactly how he is." Had he say that aloud? "Among other things, I am currently trying to find him. However, there are more pressing matters. I get the impression that you think I am in possession of the Xidani through some sort of sleight or injustice. I am, in fact, its protector. That is the one and only reason that I am not presently dead or incapacitated by your hand. I can sense that you see it is the only possible explanation." He was, and now he was beginning to understand how she could know that. He didn't know much about the Xidani, only a lot of rumors and legends. He doubted anybody knew much about them except their creators.
Sage frowned. She made him uncomfortable, and that had never been a good thing. This may seem silly, but, I came here seeking council on some strangeness involving my scrying mirror. I doubted I would find anybody of use, but my options were running thin, and...
Kiara's head snapped to face him directly. "What is wrong with your mirror?" she asked hurriedly.
Well, uh, as I was approaching Kaat'n with my newly recruited and very tired apprentices, I tried to take a look at Kaat'n with the mirror, but all that came was an inky blackness and a terrible apprehension. I have never been...afraid...before.
Kiara's eyes had widened to what must be the size of melons. "You may have good reason to be. Let me see the mirror." He handed it to her without question.
Kiara placed the stone over it and closed her eyes, scanning the universe for disturbences. She wailed suddenly and dropped the mirror. Sage caught it between his feet before it hit the floor. Kiara looked exhausted.
"It is much much much much worse than I had thought. I had suspected that the Dark One was re-emerging, he does from time to time and that is always cause for concern, but this time... Fatestop has been removed from its case and is on this plane."
"Mmmm. Yes." She seemed to grow calmer. "You see, existance is continuated by the endless cycle of fate. In this existance, fate is driven by magic. It isn't necessary for every plane to know the force of magic, or even most of them, though most do. Magic holds the balance of power; because of its relationship to fate and human nature it is polaraized, in a manner of speaking, so that enough power always exists somewhere to stop whatever threat the rest of the power in existance could create. That keeps everybody nice and happy and alive.
"Fatestop can throw the balance. Well, theoretically it can. They say that it can 'reverse the flow of mana,' but that explanation is like a flatlander description of the third dimension. Fatestop can throw the balance of power. The thing is, as far as we know, there's only one person whose capable of using it to its full potential. Only once or twice in history, has anybody been able to use it at all. It took millenia to clean up those messes and existance never really recovered. That's where Goblin Fever came from, among other things. After those incidents, we finally managed to find the stone -- Fatestop takes the material form of a deceptively dull-colored little stone -- we made a case for it, and I didn't think that anybody save the Dark One could open it, but I have been mistaken.
"I hope that I am actually, because if the Dark One has gotten his hands on Fatestop, then Existance on every level could end. If I believed, I think that I might pray right now, but thoughts like that come far too often for me to give them much attention.
"Listen, Sage Advisor. I'm going to need your help. That may sound odd, but --"
This 'Dark One,' what else is he, or she, called?
Kiara smiled suddenly and satisfiedly. "Well, I think you may already have an idea of your value. It's he. And you have, in fact, met him, though at the time he was so smothered in TG precautionary measures that I doubt even he had any idea of who he was. If memory serves me, and it does, you would have known him by the name Shadow Darkshroud.
That's what I thought...
"I can't understand at present how he could possibly have already broken through all the layers of TG mancimony on him, but it may have happened; there are plenty of signs, and it seems that he may be re-emerging en force at Kaat'n, probably right now. If not, it will happen within the next few days.
"I think our best course of action may be to seek out my associate who is still lurking this plane somehwere. We must find Solice."