The Great Game – Interlude 3: Pyga
By the latter portion of 594 CY, the now notorious FoJ had claimed a base of operations in the Western portion of territory controlled by the Free City of Dyvers. One of their members, Giraud, has begun an orphanage and training ground for upcoming adventurers. The first class to graduate from the associated school called themselves the Alpha Men – First Class (Plus Kora). While the newly established Barony was being organized into a proper subsidiary of Dyvers, the FoJ discovered they needed a group to be sent out to do a variety of simple tasks that they were just too busy to deal with. For one of the earliest tasks, they called upon the Alpha Men – First Class (Plus Kora).
The first mission of the AM-FC(PK) was generally a success, if a minor one. They lost a member or two along the way, and became specially known for their lack of ability in keeping clerics within the group alive, whether they were members of the team or additional assistance. At least three clerics from three different temples were known to have perished on the first mission: a woman of Beory, a follower of St. Cuthbert and one of Trithereon. Having no true healers within the group, a call was put out while at home base during a mission break. Responses were negligible as the rumor mill had ground fast and furious during the initial return of the AM-FC(PK). Pressed for time and a need to return to their ongoing adventure, the group was bolstered by a member of the FoJ and one of the first followers of Keblier, temple priest of Pelor within the Barony.
Pyga, at the time of his insertion into the ranks of the AM-FC(PK), was the latest young lad to arrive at the Barony to become the newest of Keblier’s acolytes. Youngest son of a wealthy merchant family from Furyondy, he was sent to the new Barony from a local priest to be educated and find a future. He was outfitted with the newest in armor and weaponry allowed by the followers of Pelor and had only been on site for a few scant weeks before being pressed into service. Young and terrified of just about everything, Pyga was not well-liked at Keblier’s then-unfinished temple to Pelor and soon discovered that his inexperience and personality put him at odds with the AM-FC(PK) too.
During the time Pyga first spent with the AM-FC(PK), he was forced to the back of the group and only perform healing when it was needed. He was asked specifically not to get involved with combat unless it was absolutely necessary. As the Alpha Men knew that gaining another cleric somewhere quickly was unlikely to occur, they made it paramount to keep Pyga alive and healthy. This sometimes made Pyga somewhat mollycoddled and sensitive to things said about him, but he gradually came into his own and gained the respect of most of the Alpha Men.
By the conclusion of the long travel mission of the AM-FC(PK), Pyga had gained ground and ability in his prayers, as well as his fighting style. When all had returned to the Barony for debriefing and rest, Pyga discovered he had gained a few friends and some personal notoriety as well. When some of the Alpha Men were sent to Greyhawk and Hardby on another mission for Sir Solstrum alongside members of the FoJ, Pyga went with them.
He also promptly disappeared during the magical travel spell Shadow Walk, cast by FoJ member Morton.
Pyga was missing for some time from the Alpha Men and the FoJ. Unknown to them, he appeared at a massive battleground north of the Great Kingdom, finding himself on the side of Nyrond and their allies. Nyrond had been fighting a losing battle against aggressor King Ivid IV of the Great Kingdom, who had been pressing on a number of borders for over a year. At this battle, in the northern reaches of the Adri Forest, Pyga was immediately pressed into service as a healer and custodian of the wounded and dying. His armor and weapons were taken for use in the fight and he remained with the soldiers of the “Nyrond Alliance” for nearly three months.
While on the search for the Rod of Seven Parts, the group of FoJ and AM-FC(PK) members and allies that made up the party stopped in at the Valley of the Mage to visit their friend Manyd Olm, current keeper of the title of the Valley and all its secrets. Within the citadel of the Valley, a magical device was used to search for certain individuals and ascertain their location. Pyga was one of them.
Now known to be in the Northern Adri Forest, the group went to rescue Pyga, partly for selfish reasons, partly to ensure he was well. Arriving in the Adri a short time later by Shadow Walk, the group came in contact with soldiers of the “Nyrond Alliance” and eventually were led to their friend, Pyga. While there and attempting to get Pyga to rejoin them, the group discovered that Pyga had found his inner mettle and much more skill. For the entire time the young priest of Pelor had been serving with the soldiers in the forest, he had been healing the sick and wounded or burying the dead with little rest between days. Pyga was nearly burned out, but he had gained huge amounts of respect from the soldiers and fellow clerics serving alongside him. The party, mostly flummoxed in the changes in Pyga, were not sure what to do with him, as he refused to rejoin them. Hoping to change the young cleric’s mind, the group offered up their abilities to the Alliance, as it became known that King Ivid’s forces were using the dead as soldiers. A fierce battle commenced, but there was no hope for the dwindling forces of the Alliance. They pressed everyone to retreat or abandon their posts, getting to a rallying point pre-determined by the leaders of the Alliance. As for Pyga and the group, since they were in search of an item of power that might lead to the downfall of Ivid, they were asked most emphatically to continue the search at all costs.
Pyga reluctantly rejoined the group on the search for the Rod of Seven Parts, only under clear orders from one of the leaders of the Alliance. Remaining with the group for the next few months, he was helpful in getting two pieces of the Rod. One was in the possession of a giant-kin, but was lost until rediscovered somewhere deep under the Solnor Ocean. The next was apparently high in the Griff Mountains but was also lost for a brief time. It was found to the South, in the hilly regions next to the Rakers. While on this search, Pyga was again lost, this time during a battle with the creatures known to the party as “Spider-demons”, who are also on the search for the Rod parts. Pyga and two others disappeared, apparently captured by the “Spider-demons”. Pyga has not been seen since.
The party has learned that one of the captured, Zuzan, a woman Morton allowed to travel with them, is alive and well. Zuzan appeared at the Barony roughly two months ago, captured after being spotted and shot by Alberus. Zuzan was never trusted by many within the group and as most of them were away from the Barony at the time, did not learn of her being there until after she was banished from the land by Wyn Ironbranch, the Barony’s de facto ruler while Solstrum is away. Knowing that Zuzan is alive and free has brought up many questions but Pyga, nor the other companion has been found.
Pyga is a young man of mixed Oeridian and Baklunish heritage. He is physically fit and capable with a mace or flail, and a devout of Pelor. Much of his training has been in the field, keeping him far from the politics of the clergy. He maintains the teachings of Keblier, short as they were, in his heart. His pale blonde hair got even paler during his time in the Adri with the Alliance, almost white in appearance now. Crow’s feet etch his young face, making him look older than he actually is. Once willing to listen to anyone, regardless of race or creed, he now is thoughtful and more forceful of his own beliefs. He is exceptionally fond of Yip, respects Wotek greatly and likes Fezgil immensely. He has no love for Alberus and is befuddled by Morton.
The Great Game goes on a two-week hiatus during the build-up to GaryCon, this coming March 3-6 in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Expect a few briefs while I and many of the players of the FoJ and AM-FC(PK) are there.