With the magic storm pressing down, strange creatures moving to intercept them, and an estranged friend riding sullenly away to the east, the party had to make a difficult choice. Still emotionally charged, they fled from the shadow beast swirls, also east, toward a safe haven at the eastern fork of the Vitos River. There they sheltered as the storm ended, and they rested in a shady copse of trees to regain their strength. In the evening, they rose and continued on their mission to the west. Not far down the road, though, Keira suddenly began receiving frantic whispers from the spirits of air. She stopped to listen in and was literally knocked from her horse from the impact of the great spirit calamity she heard. She was then assailed by a strong wave of force from a powerful fire elemental, which soulswapped with her and entered into the Prime Material Plane, casting Keira into a subrealm of the Elemental Chaos, the fire realm of Farafra.
Davian, Korgul, and Krom were a little bit shocked to see Keira replaced by a towering being of pure fire which struck out at them all in turn, and a fierce battle ensued.
Keira found herself on the ground in the middle of a strange town square, and was soon joined by Verik Westcroft, who appeared in a silver flash of spectral ravens and fell to the ground nearby. After brief introductions, the worked together to determine their location and found out (through the help of a local librarian & cataloger) how to transcend the planes and return to the Prime Material Plane. Unfortunately, Keira returned directly above a river, and Verik returned in a tree.
Elemental dispatched and everyone returned, Verik introduced himself to the rest of the party and they all headed west once again, crossing the western fork of the Vitos and passing into Escardona proper. At the first fork in the path the party decided to head into the city of Karka for rest and resupply. The city was flooded with refugees from the ravaged countryside to the west, bringing stories of a giant monster and terrible, terrible destruction of their homelands. The city guard was restricting city entry due to the influx, and the party was forced to register themselves to obtain proper identification papers. Inside the gates, within the hustle and bustle of overly crowded city streets, the party bumped into a priest of the Raven Queen. He offered them a place to stay if but they would complete a few menial tasks in the service of the temple.
Brother Rondo led the group to the western side of town and to the temple of the Raven Queen, a giant mortuary within a cemetery. He asked the group to repair a wall in the lower catacombs where graverobbers had broken in… and been summarily executed by the Duskwatchers of the temple grounds. With a little magic and a little animal labor… and some… juggling? the wall was repaired, and the priests afforded the group a place to rest and a warm meal before they departed for the road.
They traveled to the southwest for the entire night, until the storms came again in the mid-morning – they found a friendly grove and weathered the storm there. The next evening they traveled, and in the early morning happened upon a small farmhouse out by itself in the countryside on a winding, sinuous dirt trail. They stopped to ask if they could stay with the farmer, but the man was far too agoraphobic to even open the door to them. He pointed them to the nearest village, Eastcraft, just a short walk to the west. There they found a quaint little farming village. The single commercial building in town, part-tavern part-inn part-general store part-warehouse, was owned by a shrewd but jovial dwarven proprietor who rented out his upper room to the group for the day (and provided free samples of Eastcraft’s main staple – peanuts).
The party struck out at dusk, now back on a true road, and traveled for days, riding by night and resting during the daily magic storm. They turned back onto the great northern highway towards Myrrth, and after a time began to see a single, lonely mountain rising in the distance. Just before breaking for one last camp, however, they noticed a purple, crystalline sheen to the slopes and…. the mountain was moving.