Salkana strides to her family, informs them that dire news is heading to Taur’on. Vivian and her traveling companions have been kidnapped by dark forces (actually, the Helvani that rule a distant kingdom over the mountains – removed from any of the Viori Valley politics). The Orc is a friend of hers, and the two decided to bring the news to Queen Victoria as quickly as possible.
Victoria wastes no time, she immediately charters a Volken Airship for home. By the 20th of the Dragon, they are in Thorn – and Victoria is plotting. The Orc (who seems to be friendly with Beatrice – could this actually be the same orc from the play?) has offered to lend any aid – he is a friend of Vivian’s, after all. Victoria asks Stazia Almari if she would like to lend any aid. While Stazia says she cannot leave, Ashurta the Goblin decides to go with.
Speaking of Ashurta – strange things have occurred to this little fellow. The Hobgoblins didn’t locate him, but as they brought the final item of his holy crown closer to him, he began to change. To become… alive. In fact, he is no longer an undead at all – but a living goblin. He has avoided the Hobgoblins (who have actually reached the Eastern border of Taur’on – and are looking for Ahsurta’s old home) and figures getting completely out of the valley might lead them away.
By the 27th of the Dragon, the emmisary from the Helvani has arrived. She presents the Queen with a horrible decision – “Give us your second son, Felix and your niece, Allison – and we will return your sister and your brother-in-law to you.” They provide a Vivian’s left pinky finger, and poor Casper’s shape-shifted tail as proof they have them.
The Queen is not happy with this – she orders the creature questioned (and executed after) and then goes to speak with Caroline in private. She has made up her mind – she will go to save her sister. But a Queen cannot do such…
On the 28th of the Dragon, Victoria II abdicates the throne to her only daughter, Caroline.
Long Live Caroline IV, Queen of Taur’on.