Strange Stone indeed!

I've been studying how to use a strange stone almost exclusively for the past six years now and I've been without a stone for about 3 years. The first time I got a stone was at my wedding, four years ago. I got a stone then but I didn't keep it for very long. I used it once on a Foothills trip with the Pitch Assault Group [PAG] and then I loaned it to another mystic who needed one for a PAG trip and he broke it. After that Sor gave me a stone he had bought from a lucky fisherman but it broke the first time I used it. And I've been without a stone ever since.

So I was eager to acquire one and decided to try my luck yesterday. Azriel was nice enough to send a message to PAG with the time and date and ask for help. K'vynn, who recently organized a successful trip, told me he'd help. I was a bit disappointed with the number of people that showed up to help. K'vynn was there, and Talin came too. And that was it for a time: two mystics and a great healer. But we called for help and a good group eventually gathered in meadow. Veer was there and graciously accepted to lead the rodding team and to help organize things.

This was only the second time I tried to get a stone for myself. I participated in several full moon orga camp raids [fmocr] but it was only the second time I was the one trying to get a stone.

Normally this is the way a fmocr goes: at noon the day of the full moon, an orga magician appears in the fourth orga camp snell [OC4]. A group needs to reach OC4, and kill the magician. When the magician dies, there is a big explosion that kills all the orgas in the snell (probably a result of a magical link between him and the orgas) and a mystic can enter a small glade and, if lucky, get a strange stone. This has been done many times, and generally you gather a group 30 minutes before noon, go through to OC4, wait a bit with a good rod for the magician to appear, and then kill him, grab the stone and you're back in town 10 minutes after noon. There are variations of course, but this is basically the way these things work.

Not this time!
Well it was not a normal fmocr at all. First the group met with extreme resistance from the orgas in OC1. There were a lot of orgas there, including a couple of rare fearless . So much resistance in fact that almost everyone fell right there, in the first OC snell and we had to be rescued...

The fearless is in the lower left corner.

Dandelion and others came to our rescue, with Shen Calin departing because a blooblader was needed to kill a Hatred. The rescue was successful and that actually worked in our favor since it attracted more people who stayed to help with the fmocr. So after being rescued we proceeded to advance through the orga camps which went pretty well. OC4 was packed but the group managed it well and we were soon in position near the magician and ready to mount the final assault. Normally this is a matter of moving the rod and then killing the magician and the snell clears. Not this time!

Just before we launched the first assault.

Everyone did as planned, we moved, the magician was killed, and then, instead of all the orgas dying in a blaze, they all stayed up and I think more appeared, along with large death vermines. And we all fell again.

The magician falls (ooc: although its health bar is still yellow, it then became green and disappeared).

Now that was really strange. The body of the magician stayed there among us as we lay there fallen, discussing options. The other orgas threw lightning at the corpse too. And some of the orgas glowed with a light. Normally I don't get to see them much because when I reach that place they usually all disappear, so perhaps the glowing is normal. I don't know why the magician's body didn't disappear though, or why the other orgas didn't vanish. I always thought that the magician's magic ties the orgas to him and when he dies it kills all the others because of that link, or control, he has on them. In any case, this time was different.

As we lay dead after the slaughter.

K'vynn generously offered to depart and lead a rescue team to get us. At that point we thought we'd lost our chances at the stone, as the glade wasn't open. A number of people got ported to OC by zealots, which helped fill the ranks of the rescue team. I eventually got ported as well, just as the group was ready to leave OC2, so I joined the rescue team. Again OC4 was difficult but we managed to get into position and made chain runs to get the fallens out of the pit. When everyone was up we decided to try to hit the magician's corpse and it worked! We killed the corpse... And the glade opened! Lundar who had joined the last rescue team sneaked in the glade ahead of me and retrieved the stone but he gave it to me afterwards, much to my relief.

After that we all went back to town, or in some cases to meetings, and I opened a couple of casks to celebrate, and managed to fall to excessive drinking. Connie would have been proud of me I'm sure! And I have a strange stone!

Drablak has fallen to excessive drink.

I'm very sorry for those who had to depart due to time constraints, and I'd like to thank everyone for helping me get a stone. Thanks!