Wizards & Warriors STEM Summer Camp in Burlington and Waltham, Massachusetts

Background Story

The Story: History of Sidleterra

The story below was written by Adventurer Marin Gardner, age 14, based on her experiences at the Wizards & Warriors Residential Summer Camp in 2008. Visit our Photo Gallery to get an idea of the experiences written about here.  For more recent years (including the last) go to the bottom of this page.

Journey to Sidleterra – Week 1

By: Marin Gardner

We all started out as somewhat innocent campers making character sheets for our second persona for the week. But we had no idea that we would be learning real sword fighting techniques, the code of a Hero, the lore of the land, and parts of the Latin language all in one week. We were excited for the terrifying monsters and creatures that awaited us. But we didn’t anticipate the amount of leadership skills and teamwork needed to defeat them. I think everyone was surprised at how much fun the Wizards & Warriors summer residential camp really was, and amazed at how much they learned from it while having such a good time.

It started on Sunday, when we had all finished listing our character’s attributes, abilities, and history, and we were ready to merge completely into our character and start the wonderful, magical adventure. So, we gathered together outside the tavern, and stepped through the Gate of Destiny, which turned us into our characters for the week. Then, we went back into the tavern to start learning about the dangerous, beautiful and mysterious land of Sidleterra.

We all listened intently as Lore told us about the legend of the Zombie King, and how the brave Heroes who came 25 years ago had to seal the evil being into the ominous mausoleum up on the hill. He also mentioned the strange disappearances that had been going on more recently, but denied that they had any relevance whatsoever to the Zombie King, as the undead king was just a legend now, nothing more. He then changed his mind when a zombie came crashing through the tavern doors, swinging its foam double short-swords, but was swiftly taken down by the Swordmaster and his assistant. We spent the rest of the day learning about the different guilds (fighter, mage, and healer), and learning knew abilities and spells.

Then came Monday, and Abigail, a farmer, complained that her father’s bones had been stolen, so we told her that we’d find them for her. After that, we journeyed into the dark, dangerous caverns to look for the missing bones, and found many angry Snake Manitou. But we ended up negotiating with them, being granted the bones, and a couple gold pieces. After we came back out of the caverns, we looked up at the mausoleum, and found that the seal to keep the Zombie King inside was gone! We suspected that Abigail knew something she wasn’t telling us, so we bribed her with two gold to tell us about the missing seal. We managed to get her to tell us about a fey who took the gold piece and wouldn’t give it back unless Abigail could answer her riddle:

The beginning of eternity. The end of all time. The start of every end. The end of every place

We figured out that the answer to the riddle was the letter “e”, so we headed out to find the fey. We went into the forest, and started to build fey houses out of found pieces of nature to make the fey come to us. We finished making the tiny houses, then, suddenly, we were attacked by a horde of zombies! It took a while, and at first we were losing, but we defeated them in the end.

On Tuesday, we met none other than the fey that we were trying to find the day before. She was standing behind the tavern, along with two buckets of water, one bigger than the other. When we asked her about it, all she told us was that the smaller bucket was “three”, and the bigger one was “five”. We were supposed to come up with “four”. If we did that, then she would lead us to the shard of the seal. First, we started by emptying five, then pouring the water that was in three into five. Then, we figured if we refill three, then pour three into five until five is full, we would have one in bucket three. Next, we emptied bucket five, and poured the one into it. Finally, after we filled three again and poured three into bucket five, which already had one, we had four. The fey rewarded our success with pointing us towards the mausoleum to look for the shard, but warned us of a zombie werewolf… and a clue that the land was suffering from poison.

We headed on over to the mausoleum, and opened the huge, menacing door. A giant cloud of mist came billowing out as we bravely stepped through the doorway. It seemed like there was danger lurking around every corner, but we made it through and found the shard, along with a bone, and a skull. Then, after an incident with robbers, a woman came staggering into the tavern, and she was visibly sick. Our healers gave her extra strength, but she felt weak when she was out in the sun. We tried to find out what sickness she had, but we couldn’t come up with anything.  We wondered if this was the same sickness the fey spoke about.

Wednesday was a very exciting and busy day. It started out with a surprise guest at the mage’s guild. Death herself came inside with a Death Knight, and told us about the amethyst crystal. In this land, Death is not bad… just the other half of Life.  She said that, if made properly, the amethyst can be used in a spell that sends a being straight to Death, no matter how many stamina they have left. She also told us that she had the last shard of the seal, and she was willing to give it to us if we went into the maze to find a black box that she had lost, and give her the crown of the Zombie King.

We were all discussing what to do, and what to tell the other guilds when a fighter burst in, breathless, and told us that Death came to them and told them exactly what she told us, minus the amethyst. So, we talked to the guild leaders about it, and they said that time travels faster in the maze than it does everywhere else, and that we can decide to go at the daylight hours, the evening hours, or the midnight hours. I chose the midnight shift – which was the scariest. We found a couple skill points and pieces of gold, and the black box. We then had all of the shards of the seal, and we were ready to put them back together. So, we called on a fire spirit to meld them together and keep it safe for us. We all watched as she went through a fire ritual and melted the seal so that it disappeared into the fire.

Thursday had to by my favorite day out of all of the first week of camp. The first thing we found out is that the seal had been returned and made with a new date on it. Then, after breakfast, Swordmaster Alex sent out Egan and House Two to go on a scouting mission, but only gave Egan a buckler. We waited for him, but he never came back, so we started on military training and got ready for the great battle in which our goal was to seal the Zombie King back up. So, after we were ready for the battle, all of the zombies start pouring out – with Egan, who had been turned into a Zombie, leading them! We ended up winning the battle, and sealing the Zombie King back up in the mausoleum, but not before we snatched his crown and gave it to Death. We then had a huge feast and watched a fire show to celebrate the victory.

Friday was a very sad day indeed. After we had spent so much time together, fighting monsters together, and working together on riddles, we had to regretfully say goodbye to all of the interesting and wonderful people we met during camp that week. We packed all of our bags, said our farewells, and checked out and went home. I don’t think any of us Heroes will ever forget that very first week of the Guard Up Wizards & Warriors residential camp. We learned so many new things, and we had so much fun. I have no doubt that everyone wants to come back the second week after they had so much fun at the first one.

Week 2

After a weeklong break, some of us came back to the second week of the camp, plus some brand new people. Yes, even after we defeated and sealed up the Zombie King, there was still trouble in Sidleterra that us Heroes had to come and fix. But, this time, instead of the Zombie King, it was the Zombie King’s creator…

It started on Sunday, when we stepped through the Gate of Destiny again, and reclaimed our status and abilities as our camp characters. Lore went over all of the safety rules and regulations, but his words were cut off as a monster crashed into the tavern. Father Jeremiah, who was visiting for a little while, yelled that it looked like one of his missing pumpkins. It did look like a pumpkin, with its orange, lumpy head, and eyes that looked like they were cut out of it. After a while, we fought off the monster, then realized that the creature might have been a pumpkin at one time. It could have been turned into a monster, or “pumpkin construct” by the Zombie King’s scepter. But, the only problem was that the scepter was stolen by the Arch Mage Mobius at the end of the first week. Alas, this was only a hunch and we needed more information.

The first thing that we did was listen to the Guild Masters explain the different Guilds and rules for the them. After we were all in our choice of Guilds, we gathered outside, because there were strange creatures outside the tavern with one eye and had long, flowing black cloaks. We thought they looked like they were looking for something, but we couldn’t figure out what. We also realized that the Snake Manitou didn’t like these creatures at all. They kept saying things like “Evil”, and “Enemy”. We decided to keep an eye on these things.

The next thing we did was go exploring in the woods… learning about the land and plants and looking for clues. Little did we know that we would be attacked by a terrifying, blood-thirsty vampire! Along with the vampire were two pumpkin constructs, a mage, and something that looked kind of like a Manticore. We fought our hardest, but, in the end, even Death had to tell us to flee. But we did notice that the one-eyed people were present during the fight, and the “Cyclops” had actually approached some of heroes who were waiting for the healers. Some of those heroes could have sworn that the creatures were looking for some sort of diamond.

When we returned from the battle, and all of our dying companions had been revived, Lore told us about the Arch Mage Mobius, and how the heroes from 25 years ago had encountered Mobius, and fought him off with the help of at least five of the magical Diamonds of Purity – a gift from Sidleterra herself. Unfortunately, they had to hide the diamonds after they used them so that no one but the next generation of heroes would be able to find them.

He told us about the houses, and how the heroes from long ago had separated themselves into them. There were The First Swords, The Silver Citadel, The Defenders, The Servants of the Woodland Realm, and The House of Stephan the Black. He explained how each house was unique in its own way, how they originated, then let us choose our own house. After that, he told us some more information: each house has their own standard, which represents them and their courage, compassion, and honor. The only bad news was that the standards were hidden in the mausoleum, and we would have to fight the dreaded, huge, and very poisonous Mourning Spider to retrieve them.

There would be three groups that would go in and try to retrieve the standards. The first group would have traps and no monsters, the second group would have more traps, and maybe some monsters, and the third group would have both monsters and traps…. And not to mention the Mourning Spider herself. It was planned that each group would find at least one standard, then get out. All three of the adventures were successful, except for one thing- Egan was cursed with Ancient Poison.

As it turns out, Ancient Poison was a type of poison that would send the victim to their Final Death if they died before sunset. The only thing that could save him was the Silver Dollar Flower, a very rare plant. So, the mages went to look for the flower, and were successful. They came across the rare flora, took only the part they needed, then ran back to the Tavern to give Egan the cure. The standards had been found, and each of them had a clue about where a Diamond of Purity was!

After Egan was cured, and everything settled down a bit more, a Death Knight came to the Tavern with news about the undead vampire- Death wanted us to destroy it, and the Death Knight knew how. He gave us two keys that were linked together, somehow… almost as if by magic. He said that, in order to kill the vampire, Kreigor, we had to find a way to separate the keys. Then, at three in the afternoon, find Kreigor, who would be at the castle in the woods. We then had to hold one key on both sides of him, exactly opposite, and chant, “Adverto Kreigor, Adverto Kreigor,” over and over. This would hold him in a sort of suspended animation, and we would have to bring him to Death.

The next morning, the fey came again… with her heart as a puzzle. It was two hearts chained together, and we were supposed to unconnect them without breaking the chain, so she would be able to handle metal weapons. Unfortunately, we never could break her heart, and she ended up having to burn her hands in order to pick up metal to defend herself with against the evil monsters that have been roaming around.  She spoke again of the “Slow Deep Poison” that was making the land and the inhabitants sick.

The next day, we all chose our houses. After everyone was settled, the houses took turns going on treasure hunts and different adventures, like rescuing a unicorn. Actually, the house that rescued the unicorn received the first Diamond of Purity!

It was then time to bring Kreigor to Death. He was accompanied by the manticore again, along with some vampire spawn. But, by using the new technique the Death Knight taught us, we were able to defeat the vampire and even receive some Amethyst crystal that had spilled from the vampire’s jacket. The mages from the first week remembered Death’s suggestion about the Amethyst Crystal and what it does, and they eagerly took some for the Master Mage.

Then, it was time to follow the clues on the standards that lead to more clues and puzzles that eventually lead to a Diamond of Purity. The Silver Citadel had to play a giant chess game, The Defenders had to fight an angry fey, and the other houses had to do their missions. We ended up with a Diamond for each house.

After all of the treasure hunting, Lore had some news: Death’s staff had been broken when she had destroyed Kreigor the vampire, and she would not be bringing anyone back from the dead until she acquired a new one. We kept this in mind during the next few battles.

We decided that the Sake Manitou would make good allies, so we decided to make a treaty. The Snake Manitou accepted the treaty, but for a heavy price. We decided it was worth it to actually have allies in the woods. Right as the heroes were coming back from allying with the Snake Manitou, two pumpkin constructs and two or three Cyclops attacked! We were fighting them off pretty well, but then the healers ran out of retrieves. Fortunately, when Lore touched the Philosopher’s Stone, he was granted the ability of unlimited retrieves. Unfortunately, the Stone put him under a spell that made him retrieve everybody- even the enemy. Luckily, we were able to lift the spell by touching the Stone to him again after we had defeated all of the enemies.

Then came the great battle. We fought tons of zombies, pumpkin constructs, and Cyclops. Finally, we were able to get to Mobius, who was hiding in the caverns. We had already found out that Mobius was the creator of all of the monsters that had been popping up all over town, and we chased him and used the Diamonds of Purity to drive him off. After Mobius was defeated and Sidleterra was safe, each house took a Diamond and hid it in their own place within Sidleterra with their own riddle, so that, if any future heroes might need it, only they could find it.

Then, last, but not least of the adventures of the second week of camp, the feast. The food was delicious, the celebrations were entertaining, and the announcements at the end were exciting. It was my favorite day of the whole week.  The only sad part was the unicorn who visited at the end of the feast and spoke of the land… that it was slowly dying.  We knew that upon our next visit, we would have to find a solution and save Sidleterra from this terrible sickness.

On Friday we had to, once again, part company with all of the campers we had made friends with over the week (or two weeks), knowing it may be a while before we see them again. We all got our picture taken with the guild leaders, and some of the monsters, then gathered up all of our belongings and went home, begging our parents for the entire car ride to let us come to the camp next year as well.

~ Marin Gardner

17

Updated story points for each following year:

Summer Camp 2009

  • We return to Sidleterra to discover that the land itself is sick
  • We discovered tainted diamonds of purity, and one shattered one
  • There were also new brown crystals, which we could use to make a poison spell
  • We went to see Mobius to see if he had something to do with this, but we accidentally made a new creature from a different dimension come through a portal—the Duke of Bones.
  • Death gave us the Quietus, and we had to decide whether to use it to kill the land so it can come back anew, or to wait to see if it heals itself.
    • We ended up using it, by pouring it into the Near River, after much debate between the heroes, including moving speeches from heroes Polaris, Trick, and Milan
  • We then planted a purified tree: used 13 pieces of shattered diamond (one for each Greater Spirit), we decorated a stake that a faerie gave us, and we used this (with the faerie, and pure seeds she had) to plant a pure tree to get purified water.
    • We used this purified water to fight the Duke and him minions
  • After much debate between the heroes, including moving speeches from heroes Polaris, Trick, and Milan, we ended up using the Quietus by pouring it into the Near River,
  • Using the Quietus brought forth the physical manifestation of the Malaise (the sickness of the land), so we could fight it. It was an epic battle.
    • The Malaise ate Egan, and we had to attack it with leftover purified water to kill it, and rinse the slime off of Egan
  • After curing the land, we still had to bring the magic back. So, we summoned a dragon. We used huge pillars to make a gate, and chanted his name in the Changing Caverns. It came through, and reintroduced magic to the land.

 

Summer Camp 2010

  • We returned to find that the Duke had complete control of Sidleterra, and Lore was kidnapped. The Duke had his ring, so we started to suspect that wearing the ring might be what gave the Duke power over Lore.
    • The Duke set up many new rules, such as forbidding parties unauthorized by the Duke, telling the Duke all of our plans, and giving him daily weather reports.
  • A new civilization called the Minoans had set up their home near the field.
    • Being a fighting civilization, the Minoans challenged the Fighters. The Fighters lost against them, and then decided to steal from them. So, with just cause, The Minoans declared war against the heroes.
    • They had an unbreakable formation, which made them impossible to defeat
    • In order to try and appease the Duke, so he didn’t suspect that we were planning on overthrowing him, we celebrated him with Dukeday.
  • We had a party for Gustav for his birthday, but the Duke found out, and killed Gustav. We had to collect the rings of Death, and put them in the order corresponding to a riddle the Oracle gave us: two dragons fly over the waves where dolphins play
    • When we gave Death the rings, she gave us back Gustav
  • One day, Egan’s dad visited, and he helped us get new banners
    • We burned the old ones with the Wolf Spirit
  • In a long battle we fought the Minoans, using the ogre’s club to break the formation
    • They had a mummy that kept bringing them back, so Gustav summoned the Anubis form of Death to fight it.
    • Earlier in the week we accidentally broke the tree spirit’s acorn, so we sang Hallelujah to ask for his forgiveness
  • For the final battle, we fought the Duke of Bones and his many minions, using death’s skulls and chanting to make a spell that tricked the Duke into answering one question we asked.
    • We were able to use this to save Lore by getting back his ring, and drive off the Duke.
    • Lore and the Duke battled, and Lore ended up sealing the Duke away.
  • For the entire week we had been carrying around a Phoenix egg. This egg was discovered at the burnt ashes from the bonfire where we burnt the banners, and it hatched after a ceremony involving the fire spirit.
    • The Phoenix finished the job of the Dragon, restoring the land to full health and magical capability.
    • Without warning, goblins threw Kreigor’s ashes in phoenix fire, summoning his entire vampire family to the living world.

 

Summer Camp 2011

First session:

  • We arrived to find that everyone actually had to move to a new town, and a new forest, because vampire attacks drove them out of their new home
  • Unfortunately, the vampire attacks followed them to their new home, and are also terrorizing the villagers who already lived there. The Council of the native villagers was very angry with us for this reason, and very opposed to the magic we brought with us.
    • After a long string of negotiations, we managed to make the Council more comfortable with magic by giving them healing spelled, and using it to save them from vampire attacks
  • The heroes then decided to release the Duke of Bones from the sealed portal Lore put him in, so he could help us fight the vampires.
    • The Duke also demanded to have his own plot of land, and a treaty was written.
    • He never actually helped with the vampire problem
  • The first of Kreigor’s kin, the Warlord, showed up
    • After a couple days, we managed to kill him with brute force and skills
  • One day at the beach, we looked across the lake to find farmers being dragged away by a mysterious figure with a giant red hook.
    • We come to find that it’s Red Hook, another one of Kreigor’s siblings.
    • We find out he used to be a normal human, until the death of his wife turned him into a serial killer, and made him decide to turn himself into a vampire.
    • We used this knowledge, and summoned the ghost of Red Hook’s wife to remind him of who he used to be. We then asked Death to let him pass over to her Realm peacefully with his wife.
  • The Countess, the most powerful of the siblings, arrived.
  • We helped Blackmoon find and revive his Golem
  • We held the first Blueberry festival in celebration of the union between the heroes and the villagers
  • We knew there was one more vampire to look for, but we hadn’t seen it yet and we didn’t know how to fight it.
    • After a while, we figured out it was actually using the bodies of others to get around. His name was the Collector, and even though he switched bodies, he always had the same necklace on.
    • Once we figured out who he was, we were able to bring him down easily.
  • Our final battle was with the Countess. After much fighting we managed to drive her off, with the help of Blackmoon’s Golem.

Second session:

  • There were still reoccurring attacks and missing farmers, even though we had taken care of the vampire problem. There were also reported sightings of wolves.
  • The Hillock was sick because of the pollution of the lake
    • The Heroes saved the Hillock with purified water and a song
    • The spirit of Life rewarded them with the wolf spirit’s totem
  • We started to gather suspects as to who, or what, could be responsible for these ongoing attacks, and we narrowed it down to three townspeople: Hec Ramsey (a fur trader), V’dor Darling (a farmer), and Ember Lee (an Elder of the Council)
  • We held the second Blueberry festival, in which Rigby and Cassandra’s had their wedding
  • V’dor Darling changed into a wolf during a battle and went berserk. So, we thought he was responsible for all of the killings.
  • After more battles, we found out that Hec Ramsey was the same type of creature as V’dor. So, we started to suspect Ember Lee as well.
  • During a fateful meeting with the town council, we were able to put together the whole story. Ember, V’dor, and Hec were all “skinwalkers,” or wolf creatures that are able to disguise themselves as human. Ember Lee was also using his mind control powers to pit the council members against us, and make them more sensitive to magic use.
  • Once the skinwalkers were discovered, there was a battle with them and other monsters. We were able to end this by summoning the wolf spirit with her totem, so she could take away the skinwalkers’ powers and give them a second chance.
  • After everything was done and sorted out, the Lady of the Lake revealed herself to us by coming out of the water and thanking us for protecting Sidleterra.

21

Summer Camp 2012

First Session:

  • We return to Sidleterra to discover a fae conflict. Seelie are fighting with Unseelie, and no one knows why. Different fae of the courts introduced themselves to us throughout the week
    • Spring
      Spring is the first Seelie noble we met. He is bubbly and excitable and desires to make introductions first. Spring seldom fights, but during rainstorms becomes lethal. His tenet is “love conquers all.”
    • Winter
      Winter was the next Seelie noble. She is aloof and calculating. Her tenet is “death before dishonor.”
    • Autumn
      Another Seelie noble. Autumn is a vengeful and arbitrating fae. His tenet is “never forget a debt.”
    • Summer
      The last-seen of the Seelie nobles, Summer is impassioned and enthusiastic. Her tenet is “beauty is life.”
    • Chaos
      Chaos is one of the nobles of the Unseelie Court, and the first one we met. Following the tenet of “change is good,” Chaos is out to cause as much discord as possible. Despite this, he has unwavering loyalty to his king.
    • Passion
      The Fae, Passion, is an Unseelie noble who follows the tenet, “passion before duty.” Passion seeks the primal emotions that exist inside every moment of humanity.
    • Magic
      The most whimsical of the Unseelie nobles, Magic’s tenet is “glamour is free.” She possesses great power over the manipulation of magic, able to use spell sword abilities with ease.
    • Solipsis
      Solipsis represents the corrupting influence of absolute power and self-absorption. She follows the tenet, “honor is a lie” most closely. She is mute, but can lure her foes into an early grave with a draw of her finger.
  • This year, there was a discovery in the library by Egan- that there was a Sixth House! They are called the Seekers, and their special ability is to allow one of their number to disguise themselves as a pumpkin construct.
  • The first fae encounter we had was with an Unseelie. Chaos brought a patch of pumpkin constructs into the field to wage battle and chaos with us. After a while we were able to chase him into the woods, but we didn’t seem to actually cause him any harm.
  • Spring had us go on a mission to go into the changing caverns to steal back the rings the Unseelie court stole from the Seelie court. Four different groups went in and each found one ring, so soon all of the rings were back with the Seelie Fae.
    • In the changing caverns we met Passion, and re-encountered Chaos.
  • We then had a meeting with the Wolf Spirit and many of the animal Manitou. They have been upset recently at the increase in fae activity. Fae and Manitou are very different, and work in separate ways.
    • The Manitou have been worried that a war between the Seelie and Unseelie courts will shatter the balance in the world.
    • The Beaver, Snake, Bear, Crow, Goose, Falcon, Salmon, Deer, Salamander, Cougar, Mouse, and Otter Manitou have been seen so far.
  • We then encountered another Unseelie fae, but not one from the Court. This was a Red Cap, a gruesome unseelie fae that soaks his hat in his victim’s blood once he slays them. This Red Cap, however, had somehow gotten ahold of a ring that gave him the ability to Final Death. He killed Councilman Evans once and for all, but then realized that the ring was only single-use.
    • We managed to capture the Red Cap by forming a metal cage around it with our swords, and we used it to drag it into Death’s Realm, where Death performed Final Death on the fae.
  • Later, the Wolf Spirit made another appearance, and she brought with her a fae named Eclipse. Eclipse is the son of the King of the Unseelie Court and the Queen of the Seelie Court.
    • Eclipse is a shy boy, and has run away from the courts because of his parents’ incessant fighting.
  • After the Wolf Spirit left, Spring made a visit with Winter, and they discussed with the heroes more about the lore of the fae, and gave them more background about the two Courts.
  • At the end of the first week was the Blueberry Festival. The Unseelie Fae, Solipsis, made an appearance, and was named “the Fae of Swag” by some heroes who appreciated her admirable dance moves.
  • During the second week, we met Autumn and Magic. The Heroes saw them fighting, so they tried to break it up and create peace. But, they didn’t know that it was a strict, ritualized fight that the fae were having, so the fae were very angry with them for disrupting it.
    • The Heroes then had to defend themselves, through negotiation or force, against the two fae.
  • Around the same time, Heroes also went back into the changing caverns, and fought new creatures called Shadow Constructs. They managed to retrieve interesting items, like a pitcher, a ladle, and a candle cover.
  • Around this time was when the Star Followers arrived. They were a group of star-worshipping mystics who went around talking about a “change in the fate of the stars,” and the “falling of a stag.”
  • In the middle of the week, there was a hunt. King Oberon had sent his Huntsman to test the Heroes, to see if they were worthy of a hunt from Oberon himself. The Heroes tried their best to pass, so they could have a chance to speak with Oberon. They successfully passed.
  • So, King Oberon himself showed up with his entire court and dogs, and waged a huge battle against the Heroes.
    • At the end of the battle, Lore used a magical hourglass, with the help of a Hero who was willing to sacrifice his life to make it work, to turn the King into a mortal form. This would make him easier to communicate with.
    • The heroes succeeded in this, but the King ran off when he realized what was happening.
  • The Heroes went to the tree spirit to ask about summoning the Seelie Queen Tatiana.
    • He told them to find the magical fountain behind the grainery, and use a mixture of that water and a water spirit’s tears to plant Sidle Lilies. They had to use the pitcher that they found in the changing caverns to hold the water, because it belonged to the tree spirit, and it would help the flowers be rooted.
    • They also had to find an earth spirit, and ask for his soil.
    • They then summoned Life, to keep them healthy, and the Queen arrived, along with her entire Seelie Court, including the yet unseen Summer.
  • The Heroes then managed to summon back the King with the singing of a sacred fae song.
  • They also summoned the Wolf Spirit, with Eclipse
  • With the full two Courts present, the heroes tried to hold court, and figure out how to fix the rift between them.
    • It turned out that the only reason the King and Queen were fighting was for custody of their son.
    • The Heroes and Eclipse were able to figure out an agreement that everyone could be happy with, and the King and Queen were satisfied.
    • After the feast, something was spotted outside the tavern. It was something the Heroes have never seen before—A giant stag. It was graceful, celestial, and looked older than anything that has ever set foot on Sidleterra.

Second Session:

  • The Heroes soon found out from the Oracle that the stag was actually a constellation that has fallen from the sky for some reason, and that there were others.
    • The stag was Dainne, one of the four stags who dwell in the tree of life in Norse constellations.
    • In order to send the stars back to their home, the Heroes had to remind each of them of their story, and then perform a ritual to physically send them back.
  • Mobius tricked the Heroes into opening a series of gates, and opening the portal for a Lich to come into Sidleterra.
  • The next constellations the Heroes met were the 7 Sisters. The Heroes were able to remind them who they were by planting 7 flowers that represented each sister, and reuniting Merope (one of the sisters) with her lost love, Orion.
  • Orion was another constellation. He came through with his bow and his belt, but his bow was lost when he fell from the sky.
    • He led the heroes on a hunt to find his lost bow, and they eventually found it. They then reminded him of who he was by setting up another hunt, where Orion could “hunt” the Heroes, and remember the excitement of it.
  • There was a huge battle against the Lich at the end of the first week, and we managed to drive him off for a while. Egan was killed by the Lich, but Mobius managed a spell to bring him back.
  • The next day, we had another Blueberry Festival. After this dance, if Heroes looked outside they might have been able to make out the shape of a dragon weaving between the cabins and trees…
  • Alabaster Twinkle is a powerful mage that appeared around this time. Possessing a fallen star, he was resistant to physical attacks while standing still. Since losing it, he attempted to rebuild his strength by crafting pumpkin constructs and summoning an Oni, or a Japanese type of ogre.
  • One day, the Mages Guild planted many magical objects in the ground, just to see if anything would happen. Little did they know, a star fell near this garden of magical items, pulling in any living being near it, and making an entirely new being: a Chimera.
    • The Chimera was a wild beast in constant agony. Formed from a snake, a pumpkin, and many other creatures and plants, it possessed the strength and resiliency of all of them.
    • The Heroes kept trying to bring it on their side, but eventually they realized that they just needed to kill it, and put it out of its constant pain. They used the help of the Spirit of Magic and Mages, Medeas, to put him to rest peacefully.
  • Medusa was another constellation. But this time, instead of helping her, they had to fight her. Her cave was in the changing caverns, and the Heroes had to navigate through it by laying down boards to walk on to avoid the poisoned ground. To remind her of who she is, the Heroes helped Perseus slay her by cutting off her head.
  • Perseus is another constellation. Just like Orion was a hunter, Perseus was a fighter. So, the campers had to teach him how to fight again. Eventually he was able to behead Medusa like he once did, and remembered.
  • Finally, the Heroes reminded the stag of what it was by giving it its totem.
  • The Heroes were able to finish the entire ritual by making celestial water out of Siren’s tears, and some other ingredients, and pouring it on the totem of each of the constellations.
    • They also took care of all of the inanimate constellations and fallen stars by dipping them in celestial water.
    • Later that night, the Heroes looked up and saw each of the stars leaving Sidleterra and heading back up to the sky.
  • For the past week Egan was starting to look more and more undead. It turns out that the spell Mobius had used to bring him back to life had done more than that… and Egan was starting to view Mobius as his father.
  • The next day there was a final battle with the Lich, and a surprise visit from an old enemy—the Countess. As it turns out, Rigby and Cassandra were being chased by the Countess, and Rigby time-jumped back to Sidleterra to ask the Heroes for help, but brought the Countess with him.
    • The Heroes fought off the Countess, and managed to defeat the Lich by giving Anubis the Lich’s heart. Egan was actually the one carrying the heart, but the Heroes managed to convince him to trust them more than Mobius.
    • Unfortunately, since he was the one holding the heart, and he was undead, Anubis killed him when he handed over the heart.
  • After the battle, there was a meeting of Great Spirits. It turns out that the reason the stars were falling from the sky was that Mobius was stealing power from the stars and sky.
    • This meeting was about what to do with Mobius.
    • The Spirit of Life also showed up to the meeting, and was able to bring Egan back to life, to the joy of all the Heroes.
    • The final decision was to give Mobius yet another chance, but he will definitely be watched closely from now on.
  • After the feast at the end the year, Watson came running into the tavern, shouting about how he lost Sherlock, and all he has left of him is his hat….

 

Summer Camp 2013

First Session:

  • One of the first things the Heroes noticed when they came into Sidleterra was that the Gate of Destiny kept changing. It randomly moved positions around the area, and the symbols on it (which had always seemed to have a consistent pattern) were switching daily.
  • When they spoke to the Librarian, they learned that the powers of the Gate of Destiny had been unstable lately, which probably was the reason for the abnormal behavior. She seemed to suspect that it was being messed with by a greater force. Later in the session, the Gate even summoned its own protectors- Gate Elementals.
  • Watson had come through the Gate at the end of last year, looking for Sherlock, and he was still here when we returned, searching for his lost friend.
  • Soon the Heroes started to notice an increase in constructs, undead, and bandits. This almost always indicates a necromancer, or another user of powerful unnatural magic, so some Heroes connected it with the disturbance in the Gate.
  • Suddenly the Librarian disappeared, leaving her library ransacked. The Heroes used this knowledge, along with their other observations, to theorize that Sherlock’s enemy Moriarty had come through the Gate as well, and he had been raising an army…
  • The Heroes celebrated when, after a few days, they had found Sherlock! They filled him in on everything that had been going on: New magic being discovered, the Gate’s behavior and their conversations with the Librarian, and methods of strengthening his swordfighting and magical skill to make sure he would be ready to fight Moriarty.
  • At the end of the first week, we were treated to a carnival by a group of wonderful traveling carnies. In the middle of the festival, however, while Sherlock was hosting a riddle contest, he ran into someone who knew a bit too much about Victorian England… Sherlock named Moriarty for all to hear, but, as if by an invisible signal, the carnies all turned on us! The giant battle made it impossible to get in the way of Moriarty’s escape, and we lost him.
  • Also during the battle, an alchemist who had been teaching the Heroes new potions (Dr. Jeckel) suddenly turned into some kind of raging beast. Later the Heroes realized that one of his experiments had gone awry, and he now turns into a monstrous version of himself (Mr. Hyde)
  • During the battle, a carnie with a poisoned blade stabbed Watson, rendering him completely unconscious. The Heroes vowed to watch over Watson until they managed to find a cure.
  • The Heroes realized that when the Library was ransacked, magic keeping some of her magical items in her Library was broken, and these items had been transported to other parts of Sidleterra. The Rangers succeeded in the challenge of returning the Librarian’s items to her, and she was able to re-open her Library.
  • Sherlock started sending the Heroes on many quests to find expensive and far away supplies for different healing spells. The Heroes went to fetch him Fae Essence in the far woods, but that proved far more difficult than expected. They all refused to give up something so precious to them, but Spring (with the help of many gifts and promises) agreed to help them out.
  • With the magic of Faestones, Spring healed Watson. At the same time, Egan brought in a captured Moriarty. Watson looked at him, walked up to him…. And gave him a very emotional hug. It turns out, the man the Heroes thought was Moriarty was actually Sherlock! Some of the Heroes had been suspecting that there was something wrong with Sherlock, but this confirmed it.
  • The real Moriarty hadn’t been around for a while, and the Heroes were starting to worry that he was planning something. So, on the second Tuesday, when Egan heard that he was seen in the fortress, every Hero went down to see what he was up to. Little did they know, that’s exactly what he wanted them to do…
  • The Heros arrived at the fortress, and fought their enemy and his minions. In the middle of the battle, the enemy they believed to be Moriarty vanished (proving to be merely an illusion), while the real Moriarty stepped out from behind a curtain with the gate. He had successfully distracted the Heroes, and managed to use some great evil magic to merge himself with the Gate of Destiny. He proved his mighty power by slaying Egan with final death, and then sent the Heroes back to the tavern, to contemplate surrender.
  • The only hope was a mysterious green orb that one of the Heroes received from a strange cloaked man during the fight. The Heroes decided to give it to Sherlock for safe keeping.
  • The Heroes went to bed defeated that night, and woke up with new ideas of how to turn the seemingly impossible tide. But when they arrived at breakfast, Egan was there to greet them! It turned out, to the Heroes it was Wednesday, but to everyone else it was Tuesday! For some reason, time had lapsed, and only the Heroes knew about it. So, they decided to use it to their advantage.
  • They used their knowledge of the “first” Tuesday to predict where Moriarty was, where his secret lab was, and what they needed to take from him to keep the ritual from completing. They went into the lab in groups and stole an egg, a goblet, a ring, and other magical items essential to the ritual’s success. That way, when it came time for him to summon the Heroes to the fortress later that day, Moriarty’s plan would fail.
  • During the day, the Heroes ran into Sherlock and Watson, and (even though he didn’t remember where it had come from) Sherlock showed them a mysterious orb that he had found in his pocket…. A red orb….
  • At the end of the day, the Heroes battled Moriarty like they did the first time, only this time, he didn’t succeed, and the Heroes chased him and his minions out of the Fortress. They used a book of Librarian’s and a key from Death to set the Gate of Destiny back to its original state, and balance was restored.
  • However, there was still Moriarty and his minions to take care of. On the last day, the Heroes gathered themselves, their mentors, and their allies to battle Moriarty’s army and banish him from Sidleterra. It was an epic battle, and Moriarty ended up in chains, power vanquished, and sent through the Gate with Sherlock and Watson. It was a victorious day, and everything was back to normal in Sidleterra.
  • Until, of course, the feast… In the middle of festivities, a small man with hairy feet burst in the Tavern, telling everyone to get away from the doors and windows, and duck beneath the tables! While everyone was hiding, confused, they could barely see a giant, shadowy figure walking around outside. When it threw itself against the window, the Heroes could see what they were dealing with: a terrifying, 9-foot tall, faceless Wraith!

Second Session:

  • The Heroes started talking with a Hobbit, the small man from the feast, about the epic journey he had been on when the Gate of Destiny swept him into Sidleterra. As they talked to him more and more, the Heroes started to realize that they recognized some of the monsters from his stories. Some of the creatures were appearing in Sidleterra, like Wargs, Orcs, and the Bats were even starting to take up the role of scouts for the enemy.
  • There was also interesting behavior noticed in the Goblins of Sidleterra. They mentioned to the Heroes that they had a new Goblin King, and they were acting much more hostile than normal. So, when they sent the Heroes on a quest, the Heroes humbly obliged. They were to retrieve bags that the King wanted from a Romani bag seller. One of the bags contained an interesting looking ring, but they held nothing of true importance, so the Heroes didn’t hesitate to give them their bags.
  • The Wraiths started to show up more and more as the week went on, and actually started to get close enough to deal damage. They had some sort of dark skill called “Dread,” which could not be parried or blocked in any way. Once it was called, the victim would die in 5 seconds, without fail. The Heroes also started to notice that the Wraiths would be noticeably more aggressive toward the Hero who would be carrying the magical ring that was acquired from Moriarty’s lab.
  • It also slowly became apparent that there were more than one of these creatures. The Heroes would only see one at a time, but they seemed to have different weapons and characteristics. They knew that they needed more help fighting off this enemy.
  • Luckily, the elves were able to give their help. They told the Heroes about a magical healing herb called Athelas, which, when administered to the Dreaded victim within 5 seconds, would call off the effects.
  • Soon after orcs started becoming a major problem, the Heroes discovered an even more powerful, more aggressive relative of the orc. They had a distinctive white mark on their face, and they were almost impossible to kill. Luckily for the Heroes, they only showed up in small numbers at a time. They also seemed to have a mission: They were looking for rings.
  • These rings that they were looking for started to appear in unexpected places, and the Heroes started to realize that they needed to keep them from their enemies. They knew they had to retrieve the one from the Goblin King, and keep the others safe.
  • Unfortunately, when an extremely ferocious orc led a battle with other orcs at his side, the Heroes lost a ring of power.
  • At the end of the first week, the Heroes decided to take a break from all of the fighting by celebrating a life!  The Hobbit’s 61st birthday party was filled with fun festivities, but it was terribly interrupted by orcs and a Wraith. Even though the Heroes protected the area with a ward, the Wraith was able to take a couple steps in with the help of its orcs. Luckily, the Heroes were able to fend it off with the help of a local wizard.
  • Finally, the day came where the Heroes saw more than one Wraith. The Heroes knew that this meant they had to protect the rings more. They used the magic of the elves to hide the rings they had, and hopefully keep them out of sight from the Wraiths.
  • The Heroes managed to retrieve the ring from the Goblin King by going through many trials and answering many riddles. They also retrieved the ring from the Great Orc, by using a formation technique taught to them by a group of knights. It was very successful, and the Heroes were victorious.
  • The day came where the Hereos gathered with the elves to discuss their next move. They came to the conclusion that the nine rings of power needed to be cast in a dimensional rift, so they would be unavailable to any evil power that tried to use them. The Heroes succeeded in this, and it made the Wraiths significantly weaker. The Heroes used this to their advantage, and decided to go into battle.
  • When the Hereos arrived at the battlefield, they encountered nine Wraiths for the first time, as well as a wild man and orcs of a slightly different breeds. This is because the orcs were coming directly from the fortress of the Wraith King. The Wraith King himself was actually trying to come through himself, but the Heroes were able to put it to a halt with the help of a magical orb. These seeing stones were all connected, and since the Wraith King had one as well as the Heroes, the Heroes were able to channel their good magic and energy into the Wraith King, and cut off his power. Of course, since no man can kill the Wraith King, the female Hereos stepped up to take on this challenge, and succeeded.
  • Once the Wraith King was defeated, the other Wraiths were defeated as well, and the orcs were sent running. Sidleterra was safe once again.
  • The feast was one of rejoicing and excitement. And, as usual, the feasting was interrupted by a new sight in Sidleterra. Or… not so new. This man was recognized as the mysterious cloaked man who originally gave the Heroes the day-resetting green orb weeks ago. Of course, it all made sense after he introduced himself….

 

2014

Session 1:

The Heroes arrived in Sidleterra to hear exciting news- Vera was going to be coronated as Queen of the land! She needed the Heroes’ help to deliver all the invitations to every corner of the realm, and they fought through monsters and evil-doers to get the job done.

Vara is crowned Queen of Heroes Landing, with a wonderful and beautiful ceremony, and all went according to plan. Suddenly, later that day, she collapsed, poisoned! The Heroes realized that her crown had been covered in a slow-acting poison, and they needed to figure out who the poisoner was and how to make the antidote.

Meanwhile, the Heroes kept finding strange gears and pieces of blue-painted wood all over Sidleterra. With the arrival of their friend The Doctor, they were able to piece together that the TARDIS has somehow exploded in the future, and bits of it were thrown back to the past! They knew they needed to figure out a way to stop this explosion, because it would most definitely create tears in the space-time continuum!

The Heroes also started meeting even more characters out of mythology and history than they were used to- it seemed like something was pushing them out of their own timelines and forcing them to Sidleterra. Some of the less friendly characters were Rasputin, Vlad, Morgana Le Fey, Mordred, and Cleopatra (but although she seemed bent on world domination, she was respectful towards the Hereos). These characters soon started creating small armies of their own out of the creatures they found in Sidleterra. The Orcs flocked to Rasputin, Morgana took control of the undead, Mordred the Goblins, Vlad the bats, and Cleopatra ruled the Snake Manitou.

Another character to come through the Gate was Nikola Tesla. He became very interested in the TARDIS technology that was strewn around the land, and used it in some of his experiments. This resulted in the creation of Cybermen in an effort to “improve humans” and vastly increase their capabilities. This (obviously) backfires and quickly escalates out of control. The Heroes were able to take out the Cyberman while Tesla apologized profusely. They granted him forgiveness under the condition that he not perform similar experiments again.

Finally, the Hereos were able to gather all of the ingredients for Queen Vera’s antidote, and, with the help of Anubis, they were able to revive her.

They then discovered, through a visit to the Library, that the Heroes are meeting all of these characters from history and mythology because Moriarty (signing by “The Professor”) was displacing them out of their stories and inserting himself in their place, gaining power by spreading belief in his name. He was even the one who sent the assassin to poison Queen Vera! They knew that they had to solve this problem with “The Professor,” but first they needed to take care of all of these new villains…

The Heroes throw a false coronation for Rasputin, crowning him with the same poison crown that Vera wore at her coronation. Using this poison, blasters filled with Spirit Water, and coordinated sword hits, the Heroes were finally able to take him down.

After defeating Rasputin, the Heroes were able to postpone and then stop the future explosion of the TARDIS by appealing to Anubis, with the help of the Librarian. Anubis needed a life to replace the life of the TARDIS, and The Doctor sacrificed himself. Luckily, since he is a Timelord, he regenerated into his next life after dying.

Throughout all of this time, the Goblins have been having political problems of their own, stirred up by agents of Moriarty…

The Goblin Enjolras and a small group of goblins decide that they hate the “bzeezy” (bourgeois), and think that all goblins should have a right to shinies and a good life. They ask the Heroes to join their revolution against the Goblin King. They accept and help them formulate demands:
– A weekly goblin day of rest, on which none are required to work and may count their shinies in peace.
– The election of a goblin Constitutional Triumverate, to replace the present monarchy. This was brainstormed during an extensive conversation with Silver Citadel, and then proposed to the whole camp.

The election successfully took place, and Representatives of Courage, Honor, Compassion, and Most Dead were chosen. Egan was voted as the last one.

The Goblin King was not pleased with these results, but has not yet succeeded in overruling them.

As the week went on, the remaining villains became stronger, and it soon was time to fight. The Final Battle was epic, and a giant bat was brought forth by Vlad and Morgana. The Heroes managed to defeat their foes, but there was still much to do in the following weeks.

 

Session 2:

This week started with Fenris the Wolf escaping from his chains. This triggered the start of a series of events similar to Ragnarok, and many started to worry that the end of the world was near.  Fenris’ howling caused the Werewolves to become hostile and Wildmen to start appearing.

The Dökkalfar were enslaved by Fenris but the Heroes freed the Dark Elves and formed an uneasy alliance with them. With all that had been happening in recent weeks, the Heroes could use all the help they could get.

They knew that their first order of business was to recapture Fenris. So, the Asgardian smith Sven Son of Magnus helped the Heroes forge chains made of Skill Tokens, that can only be held by the Valkaries.

It was discovered that the aliens called the Pyrovilians (from the universe of The Doctor) were behind releasing Fenris and continued to invade Sidleterra. The Heroes soon realized that these Pyroviles were somehow infecting the inhabitants of SIdleterra, and turning parts of them to volcanic rock. Soon, different types of Pyroviles were discovered, and the Heroes were able to draw connections between them and the different types of volcanic glass: Pumice, Obsidian, and Tachylite. They learned about these types of rock, and used their knowledge to develop ways of fighting these interesting monsters.

To the shock of the Heroes, Moriarty showed up in Sidleterra. Apparently, after he was cast out of Sidleterra, his became stuck in the time-bubble set around Sidleterra. This turned out to be the same place the TARDIS was stuck in, and he was able to hitch a ride back to Sidleterra when the TARDIS was let through. Even though he’s done many terrible things, even he did not want the end of the world. So, he assisted in providing a cure for the Pyrovilian infection, and agreed to help prevent Ragnarok.

At the end of the week, the Final Battle was against the Pyrovile Queen and all of the different Pyroviles. During the battle, Tesla desperately tried to help by “rallying” us some soldiers, but what he really did was accidentally create a horde of zombies… The Heroes managed to defeat the zombies and the Pyroviles, and re-capture Fenris, to the relief of all of the Norse Gods.

After the Final Battle and the Feast, the Heroes listened to a storyteller of Japanese mythology… but were interrupted by a terrible Oni! The Oni mentioned terrible things that were going to happen, but was defeated by a heroic Samurai who stepped in to help. The Heroes cheered, and started thinking about the adventures that awaited them in a year’s time…

 

Wizards and Warriors Summer Camp

2015

Session 1:

In the beginning of the first week, we encountered many water fae, and these powerful troll­-like monsters called Oni. These Oni were the first beings from Japanese mythology that we encountered, but they would not be the last… For we also discovered clues in the Library­ an image of two spirit­like beings depicted in stormy seas and skies. We soon decided to summon the Water Spirit, to see if we could find out more information. She didn’t seem as composed as she usually is, and there was a certain wildness about her. She told us that a “powerful force is disrupting the tides and the waves…” and “it’s coming…”

Later we met a particularly powerful Oni, who called himself Ibaraki­Doji. He wielded a large two­ handed weapon, and used a few attack motions over and over again. However, we didn’t know how to defeat him, and we had to retreat. In the middle of the first week, we met a Guardian King named Tsuna, who taught us the specific defense and attack moves required to defeat Ibaraki­Doji. We sought him out, excited to have this new set of skills, but instead we came across a different Oni… This one called themselves Kuna­Doji, and they used a completely different set of attacks. We hoped we might come across a Guardian King who has a counterattack to this new Oni, but when we got back to the tavern, we were greeted by a newcomer who was not nearly as friendly as Tsuna… His name was Susanoo, the Spirit of the Storm and Sea, and he spoke of his sister Amaterasu, the Spirit of the Sun…. And he spoke of how he was going to be the wave and the storm that blots out the sun.

By the end of the week we knew that we needed to summon Amaterasu, and fast­ we needed her help to deal with her brother. Through intercepting some letters, we found out that gems had been hidden around the area to repel Amaterasu. We collected all of these gems and destroyed them, then used the help of a Taiko Drum Master to summon Amaterasu with the power of drumming. By the end of the day, the summoning had worked, and we finally got to meet the Sun Spirit herself.

Next week began with an eventful morning as Susanoo presented his Stormblow attack­ it was impressive display of his power, and we knew that we needed a plan to counter this growing storm. We also met and fought the next named Oni, Torakuma­doji. The next day, we witnessed Susanoo fight (and defeat) the Soldiers of the Sun, Amaterasu’s loyal followers. Luckily, our
Seeker House stepped up to the task of filling their shoes, and became the new Sun Soldiers. That Wednesday was the Festival of the Four Guardian Kings. Each Guardian King brought a different game to play, and taught a different fighting technique­ each used to defeat a different Oni. We had a wonderful time at the festival, and when it was crashed by Ibaraki­doji, we were confident in our ability to fight him. We fought him off with the Guardian Kings, and all was well.

We also met a storytelling traveller named Gulliver at this festival, and he told us the tale of Shuten­doji, the leader of the Oni. It was a sorrowful tale of love and loss, and we found his love letters from his life as a human in the Library. Later, Susanoo fought Amaterasu head­-to­-head. However, even Amaterasu’s rays of light weren’t enough to defeat her brother’s growing power, and she retreated into her sacred cave.

Thursday morning, we met with Gulliver again, he came to us frightened, and told us news of Susanoo’s terrible tsunami­ an attack that can fell an entire battlefield! We knew that day would be our last chance to gather resources and plan our defense; he was sure to attack soon. We visited Death, and she gave ring to be worn by firstborn of Sidleterra­ she said to use it when all else fails.

We then defeated Torakuma­doji using the sword technique taught to us the by Guardian Kings! There were only two Oni left: Hoshikuma­Doji, and the leader… Shuten­Doji.We met with the Grass Spirit, and heard him talk of the Mangrove trees: this gave us a technique we could use to resist Susanoo’s tsunami attack. We practiced the mangrove formation, then met with Amaterasu’s Taiko drummer to summon Amaterasu from her Cave. We needed all the help we could get!

Finally, we rally on the field for the final battle. We fight a number of foes, including Susanoo, the Oni, Susanoo’s Draugr, and many others that Susanoo managed to sway over to his cause. We finally defeated the last of the Oni, including the great Shuten­Doji in the first phase of the battle, but we ceased our celebration when we looked across the battlefield­ Susanoo was
transforming into an enormous Dragon of Sea and Storm! It was time to strategize.

By combining the strength of Death’s ring and the spirit of Heroes, we were able to defeat Susanoo’s dragon form, thus rendering him in human form again. We then reunited the brother and sister, and Susanoo, no longer blinded by power and rage, realized the nature of his mistakes. Amaterasu accepted his apology reluctantly, but gasped when he returned the lantern he had stolen­ the Sunstones, the source of her power, were gone! Susanoo swore that it was empty when he took it, which means that someone else must have them…

That night, at the feast, the thief presented himself to us as the brother of Amaterasu and Susanoo: Tsukiomi the Moon Spirit! After a maniacal laugh and a mention of his terrible approaching “Night Parade,” he disappeared without a trace…

Session 2:

When we returned to the land of Sidleterra, we got straight to work searching for Amaterasu’s missing sunstones. All we knew was that they were stolen by Tsukiyomi, and scattered among any demons he could find. Unfortunately this was easier than it sounds, because the incoming Night Parade Of One Hundred Demons, or Hyakki Yagyō, was bringing in demons from far and wide like a magnet.

Tsukiomi’s presence was affecting Sidleterran life in other ways too. His power over the moon was making the werewolves even wilder than usual, and they considered him their one true leader. As well, a group of demons had scorched a good part of the Fae Woods, and the Fae had essentially been rendered homeless. The Snake Manitou had noticed these changes, and swallowed their pride to ask the Heroes for one last attempt to a treaty. We accepted this treaty, relieved to find an ally in a sea of enemies.

We spent the next few days collecting as many sunstones as we could, be it from collecting them from defeated monsters, or finding them through extensive treasure hunts. We also managed to get some from the Goblin King, who threw a festival in his own honor in order to try and re­establish his title in goblin society. There were tournaments, games of goblin ball, and good fun all around.

We finally managed to collect all of the missing sunstones back into the lantern, giving Amaterasu her full power back. We discussed battle tactics with her, and she suggested a way to use the light of the lantern to put him into his “New Moon” position­ in this moon phase, he would be the least powerful and we would be able to attack.

The battle was long but eventually successful, and after his defeat, Tsukiyomi apologized and acknowledged that his game was over; he must relinquish his plan to gain power over his siblings. Finally, we had managed to get all three of the spirits back on the same side, and working together to help fight off what was now the new threat: the Hyakki Yagyō. Tsukiyomi explained that even though he was defeated, the Night Parade was still on its way, and there was no way to stop them. Normally, the Night Parade is only active once a year. However, the diminishing of the sun and amplification of the moon gave them the environment they needed to be around for much longer. As we finished speaking with the Moon Spirit, we looked up to the terrace to see three lone cloaked Demons, holding a large banner. We knew the first of them had arrived.

After that fateful day, we realized that we had no idea what the phrase ‘too many Demons’ really meant until the Parade had arrived and started terrorizing Sidleterra. We encountered upwards of two to three new sets of demons a day, ranging from ghosts who only hopped, to amphibious talking crocodiles, to seemingly harmless old ladies who lure you into traps. Luckily, with their appearance came Library information about them. We were able to use this information to discover each of their specific weaknesses and powers, giving us a leg up in battle. Each day there was a group of demons carrying the Demon Parade banner, which rendered them basically invincible to damage.

There were some Demons, however, that weren’t all that bad, and didn’t feel much animosity toward us Heroes or Sidleterra. Unfortunately, they felt they had to join the Demon Parade out of protection for themselves. One of these demons, a Kappa, let slip a name to be wary of: Nurarihyon. We also learned (by eavesdropping on an oni) that if the Demons can be pulled away from banners, they can be freed from the parade.

We then met a solitary Ronin. He represented a larger group of Ronin searching for potential employers, and he honor­dueled many of us to see if we were worth fighting for.

At last, the last of the Night Parade had arrived (including Nurarihyon, their terrifying leader), and it was time to fight them as a whole. The battle was enormous, consisting of several different kinds of Demons: large four­-legged demons, animal demons, undead demons, spectors, witches, and more. We fought and fought, and finally (with the help of the Sun, Moon, and Storm) we sent Nurarihyon running. We separated the demons from the banners, freeing them from the parade, and sent them through the gate. Sidleterra had been saved. We celebrated, found the Fae a new home, and ate a delicious feast while learning the ancient art of Kendo from a sword master. But when the feast was interrupted by an army of Celtic warriors urging us to help them fight the invading Roman army, we knew our work wasn’t done in the land beyond the Gate…

2017

The Heroes arrived in Sidleterra to find Celtic peoples wandering the world with them.  The Fae also seemed more empowered and awaited the coming of their ancestors they dubbed ‘the Elder Fae’.  Soon, the threat of ancient monsters called the Fomori flooded out from the wilds.  It was only with the help of the Tuatha dé danann, the ancient spirits of Ireland, that the Heroes stood a chance against them.  Their leaders were Morfesa from Falias, Esras from Gorias, Semias from Murias, and Uiscias from Findias. They were able to teach the Heroes many valuable skills that they needed to defeat the Fomori. Uiscias held the legendary sword of light, and taught the Heroes how he captured the sun’s energy like a prism and how it is used when he strikes with his sword.  With these powerful allies, the Heroes defeated the Fomori and their dread-king Balor of the Evil Eye.

Following the Celts were their old rivals, the Romans.  The drums of war had been sounded and the spirit of war, Mars, fast approached Sidleterra.  The Heroes had to choose their allies, between Romulus and Gnaeus of the long-vanished IXth Legion.  Through debate and discussion the Heroes decided that a free republic, in which every person helps each other, was better than a powerful Empire.  Thus, the founder of Rome became their ally in the fight against Mars and his beasts of war, and it proved a wise choice as the Heroes became the few mortals in legend to defeat a spirit.