Ascension of Rank: Howl of Thunder

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OOC: Performance 5, Ability Aptitude Performance.

A tale passes from spirit to spirit, the rich voice of Scale’s Aggravating Claws carrying the song.::

Fitzgerald once said “One should . . . be able to see things as hopeless and yet be determined to make them otherwise.”

Several moons have passed since the Theurge known as Cacophony of Secrets stood before Evelyn Constantine, Elder Singing Moon of the Shadow Lords, and set forth a Challenge to be her equal.

Several moons have passed and this day it has been placed upon my shoulders to sing to the Nation of a new Elder among us--it has been placed upon my shoulders to recount Howl of Thunder's ascension.

The Challenge, itself, seemed dauntless. Venture into the Wyrm-Blight called the Scar Realm. Locate what resistance to the vile status quo still thrived to glean allies. Venture forth deep into the heart of the Realm and free a pairing of Spirits lost to the monotonous melancholy native to that hopeless place--and free them, bringing them back into the Tellurian to return them to their proper purpose beneath Gaia.

And so venture we did, nine in number. Led by Cacophony of Secrets came Cozzie-called-Questions, Elder No Moon of the Uktena, Victor Dawncrown called King Wyrmfoe, Elder Full Moon of the Silver Fangs, Pari Forakis called Keeper of Scion, Elder Crescent Moon of the Black Furies, Aslaug called Seiðr’s Sacrifice, Athro Crescent Moon of the Fenrir, Peacekeeper an Adren Full Moon of the Wendigo, Talisa Enola called Secrets Unearthed an Adren Crescent Moon of the Uktena and Hank Anderson called Ghost Override, an Adren Crescent Moon of the Silicon Sentinels along with myself.

Using intelligence gleaned from allies within the Tribe of Rat, we began our undertaking by collecting at what passed for a safe house within the Realm. There we learned of what remained of a resistance--now absconded with by the Work Houses of the Realm and presumably drained of all will. So into the Work Houses we went--Cozzie-called-Questions and Talisa-Secrets-Unearthed adopting the guise of faceless workers in order to pierce the prison within. Our abducted-lead was found, nearly lost to the hopelessness of the Realm, and--collectively--we liberated him from his plight.

After bolstering his will enough to glean insight into what remained to fight the Wyrm-nature of the Scar, we learned of a resistance leader called Rags. Far thrown into the throws of Harano and unable to leave the Realm due to what had been done to him, we answered the final request of our found-ally and returned him to Gaia's cycle. We will ever thank the once-Garou known only to us as 3826 (Adren No Moon of the Bone Gnawers) for his sacrifice.

Traversing the harsh garbage-scape of the Scar, we eventually found our way to the audience of the Beggar-King called Rags. After some diplomatic negotiation on the part of King Dawncrown and Cacophony of Secrets, we obtained the location of a pair of Spirits being used to power one of the vast factories within the hopeless Realm. Two locations were uncovered; one which would aid us in piercing the Spirit's cell and one which held them imprisoned.

So on we continued. Once again our scouts, Cozzie-called-Questions and Talisa-Secrets-Unearthed adopted the guise of inhabitants to the Blue-Collar Offices within the Realm. It was through their willingness to adopt those guises and the discomfort of being degraded by the soulless middle management with a view, they moved within to obtain the information we required to proceed.

Barely evading the always-watching-eyes of the Bane Sentries, the intelligence regarding our quarry's captivity was acquired (thank Gaia for Weaver-law mandating reports on everything) and we left to regroup and prepare for what was to come.

Diving into the sewer-depths of the Scar to travel unnoticed, we found ourselves besieged by nearly half a dozen twisted and warped Rodent Fomoroi. Tightening our formation, King Dawncrown and Peacekeeper--our brave Ahroun, in tandem with Cozzie-called-Questions--launched themselves forward with Klaive and Claw, and a flip of King Dawncrown’s magnanimous mane. Drawing upon the Gifts of the Crescent Moon, our Theurge contingent drew near and Exorcised the possessing banes--rendering the Fomoroi inert...and seeing to it that their heads could be severed in offering to Eagle.

Arriving at the Factory Building of Left-Right Industries (one of the multitudes of Blighted Corporate Constructs), once again our scouts moved ahead--invoking the gifts of the Uktena to remove themselves from view...and fly forward. Returning with no top-side vantage through which we could gain access to the cells below, the decision was made to venture down into the depths of the sewers, again, to secure what tactical advantage could be had.

Somewhat unsurprisingly, we were ambushed mid-stride! Flanked on both sides by Sludge and Toxin banes, our motley entered the fray. The blazing Grand Klaive called Star-of-Morning tore through the Sludge banes intent on infecting us with...well, I don't even want to was just gross...while the true-striking lightning claws of Peacekeeper stunned the same target in focused fire allowing it to be felled by the claws of Cozzie-called-Questions. Arrows flew from the tandem-bows of Keeper-of-Scion and Talisa-Secrets-Unearthed, digging deep into the Bane's essence. From the rear guard, a hammer soared through the air, making its mark and felling the Bane engaged by the archers. Moving forward to stand with the Full Moons, Ghost Override leveled his rifle--called Final Offer--and erupted a cavern into one of the encroaching toxin Banes as Cacophony of Secrets--with all the inherent force of nature personality that is being a Shadow Lord--forced a third Sludge Bane to cow before him, bearing its...what passed for a submission. As a flood of polluted water was called down upon us (sort of serendipitously muting the sound of our combat), we discorporated the remaining spirits, saw to our wounds and continued on.

Locating the holding cells of the sought-spirits, Cacophony of Secrets coordinated a plan to ensure that the Sentry-Banes spying overhead (which would certainly alert reinforcements to our presence) were rapidly destroyed by our ranged fighters--the arrows of Keeper-of-Scion and Talisa-Secrets-Unearthed flew in tandem with the bullets and hammer of Ghost Override and Seiðr’s Sacrifice, dropping the sentries and ensuring the remainder of our activities went largely for the half-dozen Blight Spiders flanking a Black Spiral Dancer sentry.

Immediately upon its appearance, Peacekeeper and King Dawncrown leaped forward--claws-of-lightning finding their mark alongside Star-of-Morning. Enraged by the sight of Lion's Fallen Children, Cacophony of Secrets brought forth his own Klaive--called Daybreak--and slashed viciously at the Spiral, causing him to heal from the gifts of Rage. My own claws--similarly enraged by the sight of Lion's Fallen Child--found flesh and caused the Spiral's wounds to bleed grievously. Flowing with Rage, the collective Klaives and Claws of Peacekeeper, Dawncrown and Cacophony of Secrets purged the blight of the Black Spiral Dancer--leaving us to the threat of the Blight Spiders.

The Spiders lunged at us with mandible and...leg...Disabling two of our number and Sapping the Will of a third. But the resounding triumph of the Spiral's demise bolstered our spirits too thoroughly to see us pushed back and, once again, our threat was demolished..leaving us to the task of freeing the Spirits.

Instructing Ghost Override to draw on his knowledge of Science(!) and Engineering to...maybe...find some logic in the Weaver-Wyrm prisons, Cacophony of Secrets began a Rite of Talisman Dedication to preserve the Spirits within vessels until we were free of the Scar. The Science(!) method worked...mostly...and we found ourselves dumped back into the sewers (having undoubtedly triggered an alarm) with the Spirits safely in-tow. Though the Gauntlet seemed impossibly thick, Cacophony of Secrets instructed Talisa-Secrets-Unearthed to tear through the webbing of the reinforced Umbra, lowering the wall of the World Between long enough for the whole of our party to escape. Cacophony of Secrets--the last of us to exit--looked again upon the now-depowered factory above and gave a Howl of Victory before evacuating the Scar.

Once returned, healed, Cleansed and Cleaned some-more, the Spirits were returned to Gaia and we all took the longest showers and baths of our lives.

Presenting his Tale before Evelyn Constantine-rhya, the Elder Galliard did deed him Dylan Price, now-called Howl of Thunder, Elder Shadow Lord of the Crescent Moon.

Her howl becomes triumphant, ecstatic with joy and pride::

CONGRATULATIONS DYLAN PRICE, HOWL OF THUNDER-RHYA. Through your sharp intellect, vision, and leadership that you successfully navigated a team of Gaian Garou through The Scar realm to free Gaian spirits and complete the challenge set forth by Eve-rhya. I am proud to have stood by your side.