From The Heretic Knowledge Vault
Archives of Current events pages made obsolete as time passes. If you update the Current Events page (which should be done about once a month, but not more), please move the old content to the bottom of this page to make it easier to find. (Warning: SPOILERIFIC!)
Currently, Ian has disappeared through a giant portal with Meji, leaving Sarine, Jon, and Ellis behind at the inn. Speculation is rife as to whether or not Ian has absorbed the power of Anilis, or whether he's just really powerful.
In other events, Sara has revealed to Chris why the Ensigerum have been so hard on him. Jon and Sarine took out some bandits, and Sarine revealed to Jon that the reason that she mindwiped him was not some deep terrible elven secret, but rather that they had sex. Ellis expressed displeasure at not being included in the mind-wiping.
As of 24 March 2006, Jon has decided to wash his hands of the whole mess, and started back where he came from via horse-drawn wagon. That's significant because he dislikes horses, but he claims to like hanging around with the presently contrite and apprehensive Sarine even less. Bad timing: at the same time, phase one of the Ensigerum's conspiracy with the Veracian church to destroy the Gewehr, Jon's employers, is in motion, courtesy of a bogus approach to the Gewehr by a churchman purportedly looking to eliminate a rival for power in the church.
In other events, a capsule version of why and how Ian went to the giant potato has been disclosed, with a ghostly and abrupt, but not entirely unexpected, mind rape in the final frame. And Ellis has made a fairly disgusting reappearance.
As of 29 May 2006, Sarine is back in Praenubilus Astu (which she obviously doesn't like very much) reporting to the Elven Council on what she observed at the Giant Magic Potato -- minus a few little details, like for example, the fact that Meji was there too. What looked like a life-threatening ambush en route to the council chambers turned out to be just her friend Misa playing childish (1500-year-old) games that almost got her (Misa, that is) killed. Sarine has told Misa just enough of her adventures of the last month to whet her interest in joining the fun, without spilling anything seriously revealing. Sarine is now done with the council, and vice versa -- or so they'd like her to believe.
In other news, Jon has bugged out, with a hitchhiking Ellis, and may be walking straight into the teeth of the brewing conflict between Ensigerum and Gewehr. And from Ian, Meji, Anita, and so on? No news -- yet.
As of 17 September 2006, the Ensigerum's plan to draw out and crush the Gewehr Wraiths is starting to work, as Jon's bullet fired at Winston Maurel, the Veracian Church VIP who's being used as bait, has been intercepted in mid-flight by Warrel. Something violent is about to happen between Jon (with Sarine in the background and possibly on his side) and Warrel (possibly assisted by Sara when she gets back from taking care of the prelate); stay tuned for details.
In other developments, Ian and Meji haven't been heard from for a while, having last been seen flying toward Santuariel or Tsuirakushiti or who knows where. Meanwhile, the elves are calling in the Viradior and rangers to go out looking for them. This, of course, doesn't make Sarine very happy, but at least she's gotten out of Praenubilus Astu (which she despises) and isn't in on the hunt. Unfortunately, with the Warrel development, that's out of the frying pan and into the fire.
As of 17 November 2006, the Ensigerum's plan to draw out and crush the Gewehr Wraiths has met something of a reverse, due to the unexpected appearance of Sarine Elle in the middle of an intimate little tête-a-tête between overconfident Ensigerum honcho Warrel, his trainee Sara Amraphel, and the latter's brother Jon, who had been previously designated as the victim. This nearly had fatal results for the unsuspecting Sarine, but even Warrel couldn't handle bullets coming at him from one side and a magic-using, 3000-year-old Special Forces fighter on the other. The three survivors, after a typically good-natured exchange of insults, have gone off to have a private conversation, as soon as Sara wakes up from being cold-cocked by her bro (and maybe, as soon as they've rescued Ellis).
While they're off musing about old times and politics, the scene has shifted to somewhere in the Northern Confederacy, where a merry bar fight has broken out following the discovery of certain of Riley's oddities. Armed intervention by Leah may or may not be bringing this to a premature conclusion, however. And we don't know -- yet -- what Meji Hinadori and the divinely-supercharged Ian Samael are up to.
As of 20 December 2006, the scene has shifted to the Northern Confederacy, where Ian and Meji have arrived following a long flight (courtesy of Ian's supernaturally-supercharged spellcraft), spectacular re-entry, and drunken weirdness on Ian's part that leaves Meji wondering just what got into the guy. (Of course, she doesn't know about Anilis.) Unfortunately, while he's met up with his friends Riley and Leah, they've been less than candid with him on what happened to his sister Evelyn and mother while he was away from Santuariel. Suspicious, he's gone on ahead to town to make a shattering discovery, and we're all waiting for him to blow his cork...
As of 1 February 2007, the action is in Santuariel, where the divinely-supercharged Ian Samael has discovered a mission in life to make up for his failure to save his recently-deceased sister Evelyn: curing his fellow half elves of the various things that make some of them Errants. (Riley, to the delight and anticipation of a bunch of readers, has declined to get her little bit of anatomical uniqueness fixed.) The action takes a lot out of him, and he can only do just so many Omega-Heals at a time without collapsing from the effort and needing lots of rest. He's acquired an unexpected guardian/mother figure to help deal with the crowds when this happens: Meji Hinadori, who for once in her life is showing some maturity and concern for others (Ian, that is, not the crowds). Some of the people that he can't help before he collapses aren't terribly happy to be left un-healed, understandably enough; whether the dark rumblings from the uncured crowd are a portent of things to come isn't yet clear.
We haven't seen any scenes of the rest of the world for quite a while now. The last time we saw Sarine and Jon, they'd survived a close call in combat against the late time ninja Warrel and were going off to find Meji, reluctantly accompanied by Jon's "little sister magic zombie of slicey death," Sara. That was a few days ago in story time, so who knows where they are now. Life in Praenubilus Astu may also be getting interesting as the elves mobilize forces of their own to look for Meji and Ian; we just don't know. And Anita is due to discover that all of the little character flaws that Paul observed in Warrel turned out to be fatal flaws, which she's unlikely to take with much equanimity...
As of 9 March 2007, the action is still in Santuariel, where the Anilis-enhanced Ian has been trying to come to terms with his uber-magical powers. He's done all manner of healing of the Errant residents, but it's not just garden-variety fixing of owies; rather, it's a basic reset of the things innately wrong with Errants, which we in the outside world call Omega-Heal. As one might suspect, this has gained him a certain following, to the point where the townsfolk are becoming pests, with Meji doing what she can to keep them under control (by threatening violence, which after all is what Meji knows best).
Unfortunately, Ian's attempt to push the envelope and resurrect his dead sister Evelyn has gone badly. He succeeded in re-animating (and exposing) Evelyn's body, but realized, to his horror, that it was "empty," i.e., uninhabited by his sister's soul. His response has sent body parts flying in all directions, and now the question is whether the chapter ends before he has a complete meltdown. It looks to be a dead heat, so to speak.
As of 2 April 2007, the scene has shifted to somewhere in the boonies of Veracia, where Sarine and Jon (and Ellis) have acquired a somewhat unwilling fellow traveler: Jon's sister Sara, whom they subdued in the grand melee with her instructor, the late Warrel. She's looking a bit glum, not so much because of the magical manacles that Sarine slapped on her, but out of fear of what the Ensigerum will do to her if she goes back, since she "failed" by getting captured and "letting" Warrel get killed.
Not that it's an unrealistic fear, to be sure. Back in the Ensigerum village, Anita and Paul have had a tete-a-tete on Ensigerum strategy, during which Anita has characteristically jumped to all manner of bogus conclusions about collaborations or confrontations (or maybe both at once) among the Gewehr, Veracian Church, elves, and who knows who else. Her response is equally in character: kill 'em all. We also learn that the Ensigerum have noticed an increase in the number of elves wandering around in human territories doing who-knows-what. (Of course, we, the detached readers/Greek chorus, know they're looking for Ian and Meji, who are still safely ensconced in Santuariel, but Anita doesn't know that.)
In the midst of it all, there has been a marvelously innuendo-loaded little aside about Durus Flamma swords and "magic elf crystals."
As of 3 May 2007, the action is still somewhere in the boonies of Veracia, where Sarine and Jon (and Ellis) have acquired a somewhat unwilling fellow traveler: Jon's sister Sara, whom they subdued in the grand melee with her instructor, the late Warrel. She's been turned loose by Sarine, after an angry exchange between Jon and Sara in which a great deal of rage from Sara emerged, having to do with Jon leaving her to rot in an orphanage until she was rescued by the Ensigerum. (Jon basically shrugs his shoulders at this, reasoning that he didn't even know that Sara was in that "hell hole" until it was too late.) Sarine and Sara are currently engaged in a merry duel of sorts, the real purpose, not to mention seriousness, of which is not settled yet.
Back in the Ensigerum village, Anita and Paul have had a tete-a-tete on Ensigerum strategy, during which Anita has characteristically jumped to all manner of bogus conclusions about collaborations or confrontations (or maybe both at once) among the Gewehr, Veracian Church, elves, and who knows who else. Her response is equally in character: kill 'em all. We also learn that the Ensigerum have noticed an increase in the number of elves wandering around in human territories doing who-knows-what. (Of course, we, the detached readers/Greek chorus, know they're looking for Ian and Meji, who are still safely ensconced in Santuariel, but Anita doesn't know that.)
On the Santuariel front, all is quiet, but their time is coming, no doubt.
As of 3 June 2007, the action is in Tsuirakushiti. Meji Hinadori has traveled there following the messy end of her voyage to Santuariel with Ian Samael, who's disappeared in a flash of light following his unsuccessful attempt to resurrect his sister Evelyn. In the week or so since her arrival, she's mainly been moping around the house, worrying about Ian and also about the likelihood of failing her finals. Her friend Etsuko (introduced in the last couple of weeks) has first tried to cheer her up through a new hairdo and offer of a shopping trip, then tried to talk sense to her about the need to actually try in school, but the message isn't taking.
Meanwhile, Sarine Elle, Jon Amraphel and his reluctant sister Sara, and the ever-sarcastic Ellis have gated in to Tsuirakushiti as well, after some group bonding in the boonies of Veracia involving a duel and some gunshots, none of them inflicting any terminal damage. Presumably they're there looking for Meji, but contact hasn't been made yet, nor do we know what will happen when they do cross paths. And what of Anita and her murderous plans against the Gewehr Wraiths? No idea at all, really...
As of 6 July 2007, the action is in Tsuirakushiti, specifically in the pad of Meji's Mom, who we've learned is named Miyo Hinadori. Her recently-introduced housekeeper Nanoa has admitted two parties of visitors, one composed of Jon, Sara and Ellis (the latter using all manner of colorful descriptions for Miyo, who calls him "the monster"), the other of a worried Sarine, having extricated herself from the festivities at the warp gate. She has learned that her bluff with the portal mages and their security force wasn't a bluff: the elven ambassador (the love-'em-and-leave-em specialist Rarune) really is coming to town soon, accompanied by an "honor guard" that Sarine and Jon suspect is coming along not for ceremonial reasons but to snatch Meji, or worse. Sarine and Jon are trying to convince Meji (who'd rather stay to meet her dad, having forgotten what a bad idea this is) to go into hiding to avoid this unpleasant eventuality. Miyo, for her part, would like to relive the one-night stand she had with Rarune about 18 years back, of which Meji is the result, and is a lot more upbeat about the prospect of Rarune visiting again than the others are.
Elsewhere in the Poe-verse, nothing new. Meji has mentioned to Jon that Ian "did some teenaged magical godling angst bomb crap and disappeared," but we haven't seen anything in Santuariel or elsewhere to explain exactly what, where or why. And we can assume that Anita's murderous plans move forward, but no news on that front either.
As of 13 August 2007, the action is in Emerylon, where Ian Samael is raining destruction, if not necessarily death, down from the heavens on the headquarters of the Veracian Church -- we don't know why. Patriarch Jeramel and various underlings have sought shelter from the barrage while summoning Luminosita to do battle. This didn't work out well, however, as a quiet Dispel from Ian seems to have discombobulated Luminosita, with some collateral damage. All manner of shoes remain to be dropped here.
Meanwhile, back in Tsuirakushiti, Sarine Elle has linked up with Meji Hinadori, Ellis, Jon Amraphel and Sara Amraphel at Meji's Mom's place, and filled them in on the impending visit of Meji's elven father Rarune. Meji's mom (who, we've learned, is named Miyo Hinadori) was overjoyed to get this bit of news from Meji's Grandfather, to the point that Sarine, who sees the down side of the horny cad that Miyo misses, has resorted to a mild ... shaping ... of the truth so that she can spirit Meji away from the elven military force (or, if you prefer, honor guard) coming with him. Sarine, Meji, Ellis, Jon and Sara have found a hidey-hole in the form of the apartment of Meji's friend Bani Igaaru, while Miyo and her father have gone to the welcoming reception for the elven party. This hasn't had the expected shattering effect on Miyo yet -- at least not on stage. But it will, it will.
No news from the Ensigerum village or any of the other important locations in the story, but it's expected that when the ambitious Anita hears that something has taken a large bite out of the Veracian Church, she'll line up for her share of the church's corpse.
As of 8 September 2007, the Anilis-possessed Ian Samael has just taken a nasty hit in the chambers of the Veracian Church, which he invaded following some destructive spellcasting and a tussle with the seemingly-defunct Luminosita. Before getting carved up, he'd started a dialogue of sorts with the intimidated Jeramel for the purpose of finding out where the elves live. Jeramel claimed (in a state of near hysteria) not to know this little trivium, which Ian couldn't believe; time will tell whether he's lying to conceal the knowledge, or the Veracians really don't know. Ian may or may not be in a state to receive the information when it's imparted -- the sword wound looks pretty lethal, but there are probably some surprises coming...
No news in the last month from any of the other story sites: Tsuirakushiti, where Jon Amraphel, his sister Sara, Sarine Elle and Meji Hinadori (and Ellis) are hunkered down to dodge the appearance of an elven diplomatic party including Meji's father Rarune, or the Ensigerum village, where Anita and Paul are still stewing over the failure of the Winston Maurel ambush, and of course, plotting violence.
Lots of stuff going on right now. As of 8 October 2007, the action is in Tsuirakushiti, which is recovering from an energy pulse that did weird things to its levitation system. Meji Hinadori has made a typically impetuous decision to go see her pop, who's in town as part of an elven diplomatic mission and is at a party that Meji is trying to crash. Not too surprisingly, this didn't go well, as she and Ellis got snatched by a bouncer (or is it death squad? we don't know yet...) at the door. Fortunately, Bani's dad heard her leaving his apartment (where the merry crew has holed up), and while engaging in a bit of fantasizing regarding Sarine Elle, tipped Sarine off to this goofy quest. Sarine, Jon Amraphel and his sister Sara are about to go try to get Meji out of whatever mess she's gotten herself into.
Other fun stuff has happened at the diplomatic party. Meji's mother Miyo, unlike her daughter, was actually invited to the thing, since her own father is one of the high mucky-mucks who met Rarune and his honor guard at the warp gate and are squiring them around. Something -- we don't know exactly what yet, but we can guess -- happened there that caused Miyo to leave the party early and get roaring drunk, or vice versa. She's now at home pouring her inebriated heart out to Sarine, Jon and Sara (and, on the side, her servant Nanoa) as they try to persuade her to smuggle them into the party somehow.
Meanwhile, the carnage in Emerylon has (temporarily?) come to a surprise ending. Ian Samael, whom we last saw being incapacitated if not downright filleted by a sword back-stab after doing all manner of damage at the Veracian Church headquarters (and causing that Tsuirakushiti-disturbing energy pulse), is down and out. His assailant turned out to be a guard who was in turn blasted by the unexpected Sandel, apparently an Ensigerum monk who infiltrated the guard force protecting Jeramel and the other Church big shots. After doing a bit of gloating, he's departed, stage right and at monkish speed, with the splattered Ian as a present for his boss Anita.
As of November 2007, the action is in Tsuirakushiti, with a threat to remove it (or at least some of the actors) to Praenubilus Astu. Meji and Ellis did indeed get bagged when they tried to crash the reception for her father, the ambassador, just as it seemed last month. A pair of elves, the recently-introduced Peregin Barin and an unnamed guy in the regular elven army, have visited a severely drunk and heartbroken Miyo to try to pass off the transparent lie that her daughter is voluntarily going to visit her old man in the Elven Territories for a while -- where, no doubt, some tragic accident was going to befall her after she'd served as bait to attract Ian Samael. Miyo's unexpected house guests Jon Amraphel, his sister Sara, and Sarine Elle (who made a quick exit via a window) immediately saw through the charade, and after Barin left, nailed the unnamed muscle with a bullet to the belly, leaving him alive and in agony just long enough to spill his guts (so to speak) on what's really going on with Meji. Sarine and Jon are now out in the city trying to find something to do about it.
As of December 2007, Ian has regained consciousness following his back-stabbing in Emerylon, and is now Anita's guest in the Ensigerum Village, although he sports an impressive scar from the wound he got. He's showing some emotional wounds as well: en route to wakefulness, he had a big-time nightmare involving a giant, enraged elven deity on the warpath -- presumably Anilis. As a result, he wasn't in the best of moods on awakening, but Anita's ministrations seem to have calmed him down. Her second-in-command Paul didn't think this was such a great idea and just about tossed Ian off a high roof, but Anita intervened, and Paul has now gone off to sulk. (Anita thinks this is partly because Paul is originally from Emerylon, and she suspects that he still has family connections there -- rather at odds with the Ensigerum's usual expectation that its recruits will cut ties with their past. The implications of this aren't fully clear yet.) She's now trying to get Ian to partner with the Ensigerum against someone, probably the elves.
As of January 2008, a new chapter is starting, so we're at a temporary full stop on a slew of threads. Ian has regained consciousness following his backstabbing by Sandel, but in the Ensigerum village, not Emerylon. En route to consciousness, he's had a poignant dream -- or half-conscious reminiscence, hard to be sure -- about his childhood with his sister Evelyn, Riley and Leah. He's also had a ghastly nightmare/hallucination about a fearsome, demonic being that may be Anilis, who's still in residence somewhere within his psyche. This woke him up in a crazed, mad state, but Anita, who sees real potential in the boy, talked him down to normality, and has started to coax him into an anti-elf alliance. (Her lieutenant Paul, who's furious with Ian for doing so much damage to Emerylon where Paul's from originally, doesn't think this is a very good idea, but oh well.)
Meanwhile, Sarine, Jon and Sara have traveled into the Elven Territories via travel platform, with various entertaining vignettes along the way, for example a "horrific" song about Tarragon the Troll and Doodah the Dragon. Unfortunately, their plans to slip quietly into Praenubilus Astu have been interrupted by an elf patrol that materialized at just the right time to bag the whole bunch of them. The last shoe has surely not dropped here, although the chapter has ended. In the middle of it all, Meji and Ellis are in an elven prison somewhere, we know not where, but will surely find out ...
As of February 2008, the action is in the Ensigerum village, where Imperatrix Anita is in the middle of a mind-bogglingly risky sparring bout with Ian. This came about after he'd decided to cooperate with her in a crusade against the elves, and then interpreted her offer of a duel -- "you want to have a go at it?" -- in a slightly ... different ... way than Anita really intended. All was clarified, Anita landed some (pulled) punches on him, he flew off the magical handle and threw her into a wall, she's scolding him for losing control, and there the matter rests.
Meanwhile, back in the Elven Territories, Sarine has artfully talked her way out of serious trouble (for the Amraphels as well as herself) after being intercepted by a patrol under the command of the officious Rhee, a possible peregin. A very slight tweaking of the truth has gained her, Jon and Sara an (unwanted) armed escort to a safe house in Praenubilus Astu -- not her house, which she would have preferred, but you can't have everything. En route to this turn of events, Sara got to show off her time-ninja skillz by breaking the nose of one unsuspecting elf (Rhee) and the arm of another one, and also to pose an agrammatical but entirely comprehensible and menacing challenge in the elvish language. (This made something of an impression on the elves, who'd been treating her with dangerously ignorant contempt -- it's not a good idea to call someone a "cow" if they can vivisect you in milliseconds.) Of course, the puffed-up elves had it coming, but Sarine has shown what a sweetheart she is at heart by healing their injuries while a Viradior in the patrol was off getting orders from the elven high command. This band was last seen heading into the skyless city, to coin a phrase, while Sarine fusses about how this way of getting in was exactly what she was trying to avoid. Once again, that's just the way she is. At least she got the satisfaction of facing down the Viradior guy who went to get the orders from high command, which apparently doesn't happen every day -- the Viradior were apparently a lot tougher in the Good Old Days.
As of March 2008, Sarine, Jon and Sara are "guests" of the elves in Praenubilus Astu, where they're confined to a Consulate building of unknown history but with a great view of the Great Statue of Anilis. Sarine's friend Misa dropped by to see if the rumors about humans in the Skyless City were true, and was delighted to learn that not only are there humans there, they're with Sarine and include an Ensigerum monk -- a female one at that, which apparently is unprecedented (at least Misa is mightily impressed). Now Misa has been recruited to run a few errands for Sarine, who can't leave the consulate and has a bunch of elves mad at her for disabling the scrying devices that they wouldn't admit were there. One of the errands was to get a note surreptitiously to Meji, who's still locked up with Ellis somewhere in the city. Another was to cadge together an Ensigerum "uniform" of a sort for Sara, for purposes that we don't know yet. Finally, she picked up a case of Inanire 312 anti-magical hand grenades for Sarine, although it turns out that the case is nearly empty -- having just enough 312s inside to offer great prospects of dramatic tension later on. So it's fair to say that Misa has been pretty busy lately.
Nothing new of the outside world, including the Ensigerum village, where Anita and Ian are continuing to plot death and destruction against the elves, no doubt. There's also no news from Tsuirakushiti; quite possibly Meji's mom hasn't sobered up enough yet to even realize that Meji has been Errant-napped.
As of 4 April 2008, lots of stuff is going on, some of it behind the scenes. Sarine, Jon and Sara have started their "negotiations" with the Elven Council, with a certain amount of pomp and ceremony -- the Amraphels are the first humans to address the Council in centuries, and the "uniforms" they're wearing (courtesy of some help by Misa) can definitely be described as "colorful." Sarine, who's spotted her mother among the audience (to their mutual discomfort), is desperately trying to get the elves to handle their prisoner Meji with kid gloves (and ideally to release her), but the message isn't taking. We've learned that Tsuiraku is aware that Meji has been Errant-napped and is demanding her return, and to improve their bargaining position, have bagged the visiting Peregin Barin themselves. The elves aren't paying attention to the Tsuirakuans either, and at the moment it looks like this will end in fire...
And the fire is likely to involve an unexpected (from the elven perspective) arsonist, as up in the Ensigerum village, Ian's Anilis-enhanced efforts to make telepathic contact with Meji have finally succeeded. He now knows that she's a captive in Praenubilus Astu and in mortal danger. Ever the one to rescue a damsel in distress, never mind the collateral damage, he's lost his cool (a distressingly common occurrence these days...) and blasted out of the Ensigerum compound, and is now en route to Praenubilus Astu to join the party, leaving a bewildered Chris (who's been serving as his orderly) behind to explain what happened. Anita isn't gonna like this ...
As of 3 May 2008, the comic is in a brief holding pattern while Poe gets caught up, with omake filling in for a few days or weeks until he's ready to resume. However, there's plenty of action waiting to happen when postings start up again, as nearly all the main characters (except Anita, who's still scheming in the Ensigerum village) have made it to Praenubilus Astu -- Meji and Ellis via errant-napping, and Sarine, Jon and Sara "visiting" to address the Elven Council. And we certainly can't forget Ian, who's homed in on Meji, poked through some walls to extract her from the confinement vault, and snuffed quite a number of elves, growing more comfortable with it every time he splatters one. The earthquake announcing his arrival interrupted proceedings in the council chambers just as they were getting interesting...
So all told, we're in a real cliff-hanger state, with a new chapter about to start as soon as Poe has it all drawn. The next monthly update to Current Events will come in early June, or a few days after postings resume, whichever is later.
As of 2 July 2008, the comic has resumed following a one-month break -- life is good again! The action is in Praenubilus Astu, where a magical-destruction-slinging battle between Ian Samael (and his passenger Anilis, with Meji and Ellis along for the ride) and the elven military under Commander Nisotta has been raging. Ian had been getting the better of things until an unnamed elf (at least probably unnamed, rather than the recently-introduced Viradior Gilliam) tossed an Inanire 312 anti-magic grenade at his feet. In the resulting break in the magical mayhem, Ian looks like he's taken first a serious magical blast and then a ridiculously fatal sword thrust ... but it's probably not as fatal as it looks.
Meanwhile, Sarine, Jon Amraphel and his sister Sara have been offstage somewhere in the city, but are coming to join the fray, although Jon is marveling at Sarine's insistence on running toward, not away from, the fight. There's been a little humorous by-play between Sarine and Sara over a weapon that's probably not trapped, but that's a side show.
As of 8 August 2008, the physical violence in Praenubilus Astu has given way (although maybe not for long) to verbal sparring, as the Powers That Be among the elves try to assign blame (read: blame each other) for the Ian fiasco. High Commander Yenhael and Commander Nisotta are going at it hammer and tongs over just about everything imaginable, including tactical blunders during the fight, what to do with Meji (who's been transferred to higher-class digs where Jon and probably Sara are also holed up), freeing Barin from the clutches of the Tsuirakuans who've bagged him until Meji is released, and of course, each other. Sarine is, for the moment, a silent spectator at this little bit of badinage, and she doesn't think it'll end well --reasonably enough.
As for the battle itself, it's reached an inconclusive end, as the hacked-up Ian, after dispatching no fewer than 87 elves (a number that Nisotta and Yenhael rub each other's noses in repeatedly), has fled the scene like a missile launch. He's no doubt healing up and planning more violence against the elves, but we don't know where, when, or how.
As of 5 September 2008, the action is in Praenubilus Astu, where Sarine, Jon, Meji (and Ellis), and probably Sara are still hunkered down in the Consulate. However, that may change soon, as Sarine has received orders from the Elven Council to take Meji back to Tsuirakushiti. Sara's state isn't quite clear either, as she's temporarily(?) disappeared, and may be getting not-totally-appreciated fangirl attention from Misa.
There's been all sorts of fun as the elves dig out from under the damage inflicted by Ian and try to decide what to do next. There is a truce, for the time being, between High Commander Yenhael and Commander Nisotta, who'd been getting energetically into the blame game but were hauled up short by some sober analysis by Sarine and councilors Skena and Masaki, the latter making his first appearance. On the debit side, Sarine has been horrified to learn that the elves are thinking of awakening Senilis to join the fray. She's also had a little chat with Rarune (who's been dismissed as Ambassador to Tsuiraku and doesn't like it) that left him bleeding from a few orifices, but nothing serious -- yet.
Of Ian himself, nothing new, and this is definitely not one of those no-news-is-good-news situations...
As of 3 October 2008, Ian has crash-landed in Santuariel, right straight through the roof of the house where Leah and Riley live. He wasn't in the best of shape when he got there, but a small nap has set things right, and has also given him enough magical juice back that he could rebuild the house -- impressing, and disconcerting, his hosts. He's presently filling them in on all the stuff that he had been doing down south, and is coming to the realization that most of it is nothing to be very proud of.
Back in Praenubilus Astu, the session at the Elven Council has broken up, and Sarine has gone back to the Consulate to tell Meji and the Amraphels what's going on -- after first letting Rarune know that if anything bad happens to Meji, whether he's involved or not, his ass is grass and Sarine's the mower. Meji (and Ellis) and Jon hear the story, but Sara isn't there, having been invited out to a sparring session with 6'4" fangirl Misa. This didn't go well from Misa's standpoint, not just because Sara's time-ninja skills were far beyond what Misa could handle, but even more, because of the damage done to Misa's fragile, 1400-year-old psyche. Misa, it seems, went and hid when the dustup with Ian started -- quite a sensible thing to do, actually, but her sense of self-worth has been pulverized, and she's despondent about her chances of ever amounting to anything, Sara's clumsy attempts to console her notwithstanding.
As of 1 November 2008, the action is in Praenubilus Astu, where Sarine, the Amraphels, Meji (and Ellis), and Misa are dolefully contemplating what to do next. Sarine has told the others of the elves' plan to awaken the dormant Senilis, although we readers don't yet know what those plans are. She has also mentioned that she's to escort Meji back to Tsuirakushiti under safe conduct granted by the elves. After that, who knows? The crew are basically hanging around their quarters at the Consulate, having come to the conclusion that they're all outcasts who are breaking ties with their respective cultures. Ah, the pain.
Meanwhile, in Santuariel, Ian has been dismayed to learn from Leah and Riley that many of the Omega-Heals he did the last time he was in town haven't gone well -- in the case of Jason Darrow, a blind boy whose sight he'd restored, terminally not well. After berating himself over his inability to do anything right, he's once again launched into the stratosphere, to go who knows where and do who knows what, although violence against the elves seems like a pretty good bet.
As of 5 December 2008, Sarine and the Amraphels are in Tsuirakushiti, having just gated in (after some badinage in Taberna) to take Meji home. Meji's probably around there somewhere, but not seen yet, which is causing her grandfather a certain amount of distress as he meets them at the gate. (Presumably he's forgotten what a pain in the ass Meji can be.) They've reached this destination following a rather testy exchange with ranger Sarna outside Praenubilus Astu, during which Sarna took every opportunity to set barbs in Sarine regarding her preference for hanging around with smelly humans rather than helping defend the elven city or going to look for Senilis. Sarine uncharacteristically held her tongue and didn't tell Sarna that she was following orders and doing something the elves needed done, and didn't even rip her a new one on general principles, even though Sarna really had it coming. A contrite Misa was part of this exchange, but quietly returned to the subterranean city to do her part in shoring up the defenses.
Meanwhile, Ian, who'd launched into the stratosphere last month following a disconcerting visit to Santuariel, has re-entered at the Ensigerum village, to be scolded by Paul and Anita for pre-empting against the elves and squandering the element of surprise. Big mistake, as he'd already figured out that Anita was manipulating him, and was dropping by to announce that the shoe is now on the other foot. He put the kibosh on their attempts to bring him under their thumbs, showed them who has the real power, and in a surprising turn, now seems to be taking seriously a sarcastic remark by Paul that he might do better looking for allies among the trolls. However, the scene shifted before we could see where that little twist is going to lead.
As of 2 January 2009, the action is in Tsuirakushiti, where Sarine is desperately trying to get the city fathers (meaning Meji's Grandfather and the recently-introduced General Izayoi) to help deal with the I-bomb that's out there somewhere. This follows an exchange of hostages (Meji for Barin, whose attitude toward Sarine is not exactly one of appreciation), the usual sarcastic wit by Jon and Ellis, and a surprisingly warm welcome home for Meji rendered by her mother and surprise visitor Bani Igaaru (and Rape-kun). Alas, not all is sweetness and light. Bani has informed Meji that contrary to her hopes, Professor Yukiri is cutting her not the slightest bit of slack as regards her term project at Sashi Mu Academy of Thaumaturgy and Conjuration. Furthermore, she and Miyo have come to the realization that Meji was somehow connected with the carnage in Emerylon, which is probably not a good thing, although Bani opines that it may mean that Meji and Ian might be a decent match after all. Finally, Sarine's attempts at negotiation are not going all that well; the Tsuirakuans are having a hard time buying the notion that an elven goddess might have possessed an Errant and be running around causing death and destruction. They're also questioning the elves' motivation and moral posture in the whole thing -- which Sarine admits isn't unreasonable.
As of 6 February 2009, Sarine, who's showing a bit of wear and tear, is the center of action, as she desperately searches for some way to not only keep the I-bomb from going off again, but also keep the elves from making a bad situation worse by weaponizing Senilis. Her attempts to get the Tsuirakuan government to quietly put the kibosh on the elven plans didn't come off, to put it mildly, as Meji's Grandfather and General Izayoi have reached the conclusion that the only way to meet the threats is to use force. This didn't sit well with Sarine, and there's a hole punched in a wall somewhere in Tsuirakushiti to prove it.
Predictably, Sarine is berating herself for possibly starting a war rather than defusing a threat -- she does this a lot -- and is hatching a plan to get herself, Meji, Jon, Sara, and maybe even Bani Igaaru into a position to keep things from blowing up -- she does this a lot too. After Meji revealed that Ian had fenced the book on the Lorenzel Excavations at a Tsuirakushiti bookstore ("Arcana Unearthed"), Sarine swapped the proprietor an elven knowledge crystal to get it, and the gang is now trying to get clandestine access to a warp gate, via a ruse involving Sara posing as Bani's country-bumpkin cousin from Farrel. This probably will not end well.
Incidentally, in the parallel universe of Errant Road, both currently active threads are also careening toward encounters of some ill-defined but probably violent kind. It's just a violent world.
As of 3 March 2009, the action is in a state of suspended animation, in more ways than one. We're between chapters (38 and 39) while Poe does some omake until the action resumes, and in the story itself, the intrepid adventurers are in discorporate state, having just gated out of Tsuirakushiti bound for who-knows-where. (Well, Sarine presumably knows, although she hasn't given details.) They achieved this ethereal state with the help of a couple of semi-kidnapped portalmages whom Sarine first bagged, then bribed, and also with the help of a diversion created by Bani to distract battlemage Jiro. (Did Jiro and Sara Do It? Some things are best left to the imagination.)
Other areas haven't been heard from in quite a while. Ianilis is out there somewhere, possibly taking Paul's jibe about seeking allies among the trolls more seriously than Paul intended it. Paul and Anita haven't been heard from in a while; they've probably been busy licking their Ian-inflicted wounds (spiritual more than physical), but Anita can't refrain from hatching dastardly plots for long, so they'll be heard from again. And what are the elves up to? We'll find out soon enough, but for now, it's a mystery.
As of 3 April 2009, the action is in some unidentified place in the far north -- with the emphasis on "action." Sarine, Meji (and Ellis), and the Amraphels have gated up there to try to prevent the conflict brewing between the elves, who've sent a party north to try to awaken and exploit Senilis, and Tsuiraku, who are sending fast airships full of battlemages to stop them. However, the elves know Sarine's do-gooder tendencies and stationed Sarna at the gate to keep exactly this setup from materializing. Neither Sarine nor Sarna were able to convince the other to yield peaceably, so what looks like a serious, grim fight to the death between the two rangers has started, and will likely last a while.
As of 6 May 2009, we're in a brief(?) lull for some Errant Commentary, as Chapter 39 turns into Chapter 40. However, this isn't to say that things are exactly tranquil as the new chapter opens. We're still at some unidentified locale in the far north, apparently a dwarven ruin of some kind but details are lacking. Sarine and Sarna are locked in what looks very much like a life-and-death struggle, after some snarkage with Sarine insisting that the elves need to change their minds about awakening Senilis and Sarna insisting that Sarine has gone over to the dark side. About the only thing established so far is that elves (or at least these two) are seriously hard to kill. Interestingly, they're able to keep the snark going while trying to kill and avoid being killed.
Meji, Jon and Sara are getting in on the fun too, as it turns out that there was a whole squad of elves backing Sarna up. The fire fight has inflicted a hit on Jon, who's apparently not as robust as the elves, but it's hard to be sure how serious it is. Sara, for her part, has been clamped down by some manner of binding spell, leaving Meji (and Ellis, which may or may not be a good thing) the only one of the good guys still able to fight at anything like full strength. Things generally don't look good for the home team ... which is probably an indication that something weird is about to happen.
As of 5 June 2009, the fight continues between the band of elves who have traveled north to awaken Senilis, and Sarine and her colleagues who have traveled north to talk them out of it, or failing that, stop them. Sarine's remarkably evenly-matched death battle with former friend Sarna continues, although there have been hints that something may be about to happen to turn the tide -- one way or another. For the moment, the snarkage that accompanied the first phase of the fight has stopped; possibly the two combatants have realized that this really is a fight to the death, and they'd better devote their attention to more urgent things than witty insults.
The brawl between the larger parties, by contrast, is beginning to show signs of a clear winner and a clear loser -- and to all indications, it's the elves that are losing. Sara Amraphel has managed to escape from the Binding spell that had had her all trussed up, with some help from Meji and (remarkably enough) Ellis. She has inflicted one blow that is most certainly fatal, unless the elves have some ability to regenerate entire bodies from severed heads that we don't know about. Her brother has also drawn serious blood, although we don't know yet whether it's fatal -- probably not. Anyway, Sara's time-ninja skills are starting to turn the tide in this one -- probably.
As of 6 July 2009, we're starting a brand new chapter, one with what appears to be a troll's clawed hand on the cover. About time, we say; Paul's earlier barbs at Ian made it pretty clear that this one was coming, and the suspense has been killing us -- or at least it killed Sarna.
Speaking of whom, the battle in the Far North has ended for now, with our intrepid crew taken captive by the elves. They did get in their licks; elven warrior Rainae was tidily beheaded by Sara in time-ninja mode, various other wounds of varying degrees of severity were inflicted, and last but by no means least, Sarine killed her oldest friend (Sarna), much to her own horror. She's been trying to get the combat to end peacefully, but with the arrival of the second wave of elves (who have expressed a willingness to see Sarine taken out and executed on the spot), the chances of that have pretty well gone away.
Read this next chapter, folks. The other shoes are starting to drop.
As of 7 August 2009, the action, and there's plenty of it, is somewhere in the Far North, where an elven party under nasty High Commander Yenhael is trying to get to the whatever-it-is containing the slumbering Senilis. They have coerced Jon into trying to help them defeat the wards set up to keep elves out (one unnamed human already having been blown away by a Gatling gun in the attempt), using threats to Meji and Sarine as leverage. Thus far this hasn't gone smoothly, as Jon has passed a barrier that however did real damage to one of his elven captors. (Serves him right, say we.) Presumably there'll be some more action on this front over the next month.
Meanwhile, somewhere near the Ensigerum village, Ianilis, Anita and Paul have interrupted what appears to be a ceremonial execution of a troll. Their purpose in doing this is obviously to follow through on Paul's sarcastic comment about looking for allies among the trolls, but that isn't going well either: the chieftess of the trolls has figured out that Ian is nobody they want to do business with, indeed is a "Marime" (as Ian himself has stupidly confirmed) and therefore a dangerous, chaotic and generally cursed being, to be avoided rather than allied with. However, Ian's attempt at necromancy on the executed troll has worked a little better than it did when he tried it on his sister ... and that has given him an idea.
As of 2 September 2009, events in the Far North are coming to a head, as Jon, Sara, Meji, Ellis and a swarm of pursuing elves are all converging on what looks like a big radio telescope dish, but probably has something to do with Senilis rather than astronomy. This remarkable state of affairs came about after Jon somehow defeated the anti-intrusion devices at the site, following heavy-handed coercion by elven nasty Yenhael. Sarine is still being held by the elves, having informed Jon that she'd be "fine" in captivity for the moment. Were it not an anatomical impossibility, you'd really have to admire Sarine's cojones under the circumstances.
Presumably, Ian is still out there somewhere, creating an undead army after he failed to recruit the trolls as allies. The setting looks very much as if he and assorted other combatants may be arriving fairly soon, however.
As of 3 October 2009, the action is somewhere off the normal plane of existence, as both the elves and the Good Guys (Meji and the Amraphels) have succeeded in getting transported off to a weird site full of Paedagogusi, and probably Senilis. This has led to one rather messy casualty, as newly-introduced Concussion, one of the Paedagogusi, has proven to be as crazy as advertised, and wielded her hammer against elven big-bad Yenhael. Based on the amount of the top of Yenhael's head that was removed by this little love tap, there's a very good chance that he has joined the Living Impaired, although this encounter is wild enough that nothing should be taken for granted yet.
The humans quite understandably want no part of this encounter, and Jon is already trying to get them to decamp and head back for the battleground in the Far North, to release Sarine, who's still being held prisoner by the elves. This plan too has developed a complication, in that Sara has done a face-plant of unknown severity, and is being checked out by another of the Paedagogusi, newly-introduced Chicanery. As if that wasn't enough of a Paedagogusi presence, Nookie and Kawaii are on the scene too, trying to do something about Concussion and the damage she's apparently wanting to cause.
Sarine and the elves are still out there, and the Tsuirakuan airship fleet is also presumably on its way north. Finally, and never to be forgotten, Ianilis is still lurking somewhere, probably gathering an army of undead trolls. In general, it's a pretty violent world out there at the moment.
Incidentally, note that as of this date, the Errant Story site has undergone quite a bit of change, with considerable added functionality (e.g. improved search function for the archives). Give it a try. Some of the features in this wiki that refer back to the main site may be temporarily busted as a result of the upgrades, but that's getting fixed; archive links in about 3/4 of the pages seem to be back working now..
As of 13 November 2009, things are in a brief pause as a new chapter starts and Poe deals with some real-world issues. It's not a bad time for it, as the excrement has definitely hit the rotary oscillator in-story as well. The elves have finally made it to the resting place of Senilis, minus their leader Yenhael, who was semi-decapitated by a hammer wielded by generally crazy Paedagogusi Concussion. One other, unnamed elf is probably down for the count as well. Newly-introduced Chicanery managed to get Concussion calmed down before she did terminal damage to the rest of the elves, so they were able to convince Chicanery and Nookie, who's visiting from the Giant Magic Potato, to escort them to where Senilis is, or at least, was. However, the elves pulled a double-cross on the fairies, and consequently there's been a bright flash of light similar to the one seen long ago when Meji paid a similar call on Anilis, although of course the goddess had been Ian-ized before Meji came calling. Is Senilis there, or also out seeing the world? We don't know yet.
The new chapter title page has a bunch of stylized airships on it, so it's reasonable to guess that the Tsuirakuans are about to join the fun as well. Ian, Anita and allies haven't appeared yet, but their time must be coming. As for Sarine and the Amraphels, they're the ones getting dazzled by the appearance of the airships, so they'll be around there somewhere when the action resumes, probably.
As of 4 December 2009, years of anticipation and foreshadowing have finally given way to -- well -- something, as Meji Hinadori and Senilis have had their long-anticipated meeting of the minds, so to speak. She ("they"?) and the Amraphels are currently sprinting for the exit from Senilis' chamber -- more or less, anyway, as Meji herself is still sufficiently dazed from whatever happened that she's mainly being dragged along by Jon. Pursuit by Silman and the other elves has been at least temporarily delayed by the vengeful Paedagogusi Chicanery, Kawaii and Nookie, who didn't take well to the Binding the elves threw at them earlier.
We've learned a few things from Nookie and Chicanery en route to this exciting state of affairs. Senilis apparently woke up in a "cranky" state of mind, reasonably enough, and his vaporous form careened around for a while before settling on/in Meji. Needless to say, the elves aren't very happy with this development, having hoped to absorb Senilis themselves (and as a backup, having tried to coax Sara into stepping up), and in particular, having no interest in having another Errant out there with god-like powers. However, Nookie has explained that the elves are "hard coded" not to be able to "interact" with Senilis like that, and Sara -- well, she vowed bloody revenge on the elves if she was the one who got possessed, so it's probably just as well she didn't. Chicanery and Nookie also say there's "not much left" of Senilis; the meaning of this little comment isn't clear yet.
Meanwhile, Sarine is apparently still being held captive by the elves who didn't go into Senilis' chamber, although there are hints that a rendezvous is coming. And what of Anita, Ianilis, the Tsuirakuans and so on? We don't know, but whatever is about to happen, it's likely to be messy.
As of 9 January 2010, festivities have resumed following a shutdown over Christmas and New Years, with some filler art to keep things going. Meji (who has discovered that hosting Senilis hasn't had quite the same effect on her that Anilis has had on Ian, which is probably a good thing) and the Amraphels have managed to escape from Senilis' chamber and are looking for a place to hide somewhere in the ruins of the abandoned city. They've picked up some fellow travelers: Sarine, whom they've rescued from elven captivity (with some snarkage between Jon and elf Elanin, one of Sarine's guards and a victim of a head wound inflicted earlier by Jon), and Paedagogusi Nookie and Kawaii, who are tagging along for their own reasons.
"Escaping from what?" you might ask. Very good question. Of course the elves are still chasing them, but in addition, Sara has noticed something overhead that's now shining a light down on the fleeing group. Based on the chapter title, consensus is that this may be a fleet of long-range airships sent by the Tsuirakuans to check out what's going on. Time will tell ... although we're probably getting close to the end of another chapter.
Of Ian, Anita, etc., no recent news, which is probably just as well.
As of 5 February 2010, the Tsuirakuans have finally landed in the Far North, to start the process of determining just WTF has happened there. They've "freed" Meji and "captured" Sarine and the Amraphels, although Meji is asking them to treat her "friends" a bit better than they're currently doing. (Kawaii is flitting around too, and presumably Nookie is also around there somewhere.) They've started to do some divination with equipment thoughtfully brought along for that purpose, but as yet have discovered that, however Sarine, Meji, Jon and Sara managed to escape Senilis' chamber, they themselves can't find a way in. This is probably just as well.
So what went on in that chamber while we were away? Hard to tell, but the Tsuirakuans have noted the presence of a bunch of unconscious elves. Did this mean that Chicanery administered the promised beatdowns and dumped them outside? Possibly, but it's hard to be sure. At least one ambulatory elf has also been seen, so the Tsuirakuans might be getting ready for some elven encounters. All told, it's a great time for fact finding, subject of course to the little caveat that not many facts seem to be getting found -- yet.
As of 12 March 2010, things are moving a bit slowly owing to Poe and Impy spending much of their recent time getting Volume Three of the dead-trees version of the story off to the publisher. (Their priorities are right. If you're reading this and haven't pre-ordered the thing, go right out and do so. Please.)
That isn't to say there hasn't been some action in the Poe-verse, however. At the Ensigerum village, human punching bag Chris has been dumped unceremoniously on the ground by Ianilis after delivering a message and engaging in a wee bit of male bonding. Ian didn't like the message much -- apparently Paul is telling him that it'll be a couple more days before there are enough monks around to move against the elves -- and Chris didn't like what Ian had to say about Luminosita (Chris? religious? Whoda thunkit...), but it's all working out for the best, as Ian has terrified Chris enough to keep him out of the carnage that's about to break loose. Chris will thank him for that some day ... maybe.
Events in the Far North have come to something of a head, as the Tsuirakuan expedition has discovered that Meji is hosting some enormous magical power source. We know, of course, that that source is Senilis, but the Tsuirakuans aren't quite willing to accept that yet, despite Sarine's desperate entreaties to them to "get it out of her." All and sundry were last seen boarding airships bound for Tsuirakushiti, where presumably the next act in this little drama will be playing out.
As of 9 April 2010, the action is in Tsuirakushiti, where Meji Hinadori has regained consciousness following a hurried trip back from the Far North. She's mainly moping around and wondering why she hasn't been as magically supercharged as a result of Senilis as Ian was when he got Anilisized, but at the same time, she's worried that the "brain parboiling stuff" that happened to Ian is still going to happen to her, supercharged or not. (Ellis, of course, is about as sympathetic to this concern as usual, which is to say, not at all.)
Her presence has definitely caused certain ... issues, even if she herself has been unaware of them. Meji's grandfather, who we've learned bears the name Ichiro Hinadori, was quite anxious to see her back on her feet (and quite indifferent to the plight of Sarine and the Amraphels, who are apparently in custody somewhere in Tsuirakushiti). When he went off to "negotiate" with obnoxious elven ambassador Lucian, who was considerably less enthusiastic about Tsuiraku harboring an Errant (let alone one who "kidnapped" Senilis...), his concern boiled over into some violent spellcraft that left Her Excellency going back to Praenubilus Astu in a huff, threatening dire consequences. Gramps really doesn't care, however, having assured another, unnamed councilor that the elves are a paper tiger. We'll see.
As of 7 May 2010, the Paedagogusi have landed. Specifically, they're in Tsuirakushiti, where Nookie and Kawaii have been keeping Sarine and the Amraphels company while they're locked up. This hasn't gone over well, as Nookie in particular is getting antsy to find out what has become of the Senilis-possessed Meji (or more accurately, what has become of Senilis, as she doesn't really seem to care about his half-elven host). She's just blasted through the magically-protected door of the cell she'd been sharing with Jon and is now homing in on her quarry, wherever that is.
Meji has been getting restless too, with the usual whining to Ellis and all, but that got interrupted by a telepathic exchange with her boy toy, who has just sheared the top off a mountain to use to transport Anita, Paul and other Ensigerum monks to Praenubilus Astu for the great battle against the elves. For once, Meji is the one preaching moderation, but Ian, of course, isn't having any of it; nothing but out-and-out genocide will suffice as far as he's concerned. And what of the skyless city itself? No news, but the elves surely must be shoring up their defenses. All told, things are about to get violent in the Poe-verse.
In news of Caffeine Angel Studios, Volume Three of the dead-trees version of the story is now out and available for purchase. Preliminary reports say that it's Pulitzer Prize and Nobel Prize in Literature material all rolled into one -- well, not really, but people who've read it do seem to like it. If you're reading this and haven't pre-ordered the thing, go right out and do so. Please.
As of 8 June 2010, action has resumed at the beginning of a new chapter, in Tsuirakushiti, where a bunch of red-shirted ensigns are trying to figure out what to do about the "thing" that has forced its way into the place where Meji is being held. The "thing," of course, is Nookie, who wandered the city (rather ... quickly ...) looking for Meji, and on finding her, wiped out a pair of golems that one of the red-shirts ill-advisedly tried to use to stop her. (The term "small but mighty" applies to Paedagogusi in spades.)
There exists some question, however, as to exactly what it is that Nookie has homed in on. There's a disturbing amount of blood emerging from the unconscious Meji's nose and mouth (and, according to Ellis, other orifices as well -- don't go there...). At the same time, she's had what looks like an out-of-body experience talking to a couple she ran into on a featureless white plane -- one of whom looks like an older, mini-skirted version of herself, the other a splitternacht Ian Samael. They've at least reassured her that she's still alive, but clearly the whole story here hasn't been told yet.
Of the real-world (sic) Ian, no news; presumably he's en route to Praenubilus Astu, carrying Anita, a resigned Paul, and other Ensigerum monks on the sheared-off top of a mountain. He'll be heard from again, soon.
In news from outside the story, Poe and Impy have announced that the comic will be cutting back on frequency for a while as it approaches its inevitable conclusion (and as Poe starts working on what comes next). Comics will be posting on Mondays and Thursdays for now, rather than Monday, Wednesday and Friday. As compensation, there'll be little extras from time to time, the exact nature of which is still up in the air. Stay tuned.
As of 10 July 2010, we're not exactly sure where the action is, because it seems to be happening in Meji's mind -- although it's starting to explode out of same in decidedly unsettling style. Her "conversation" with the older version of herself and an exhibitionist version of Ian has ended, with the distinct impression that the other two know more than they're saying -- much more. In its wake, Meji has discovered that there's been another occupant of her brain all along, ever since the encounter in Senilis' chamber -- presumably " the ol' bastard" himself -- but "things were just drowning it out." Well, they're not any more.
No news from other corners of the Poe-verse; the switch to twice-weekly updates has slowed the pace of progress in the comic itself somewhat. However, as compensation, there has been good omake in the form of text articles on the weekends that have filled in some blanks concerning battlemages, the history of Veracia, and some curious characters. It's a good trade, particularly given the primo quality of the art while Meji debates with herself and Ian.
As of 5 August 2010, the weirdness inside Meji's head has finally ended, but weirdness a-plenty still lives on, to be sure, and a bloody climax seems to be looming in the near future. Ian has reached Praenubilus Astu with his flying saucer full of Ensigerum time-ninjas, including both Anita and the apparently airsick Paul. There are indications that he's started his attack on the skyless city; at the very least, there was a magical interruption in a testy "teleconference" between unnamed elven big shots and Ichiro Hinadori and other powerful Tsuirakuans. Given the way the diplomatic stuff was going, this may even be for the best.
On a much weirder note, the off-plane action has included an exchange between two beings that sound very much like Anilis and Senilis, under conditions so bizarre as to be indescribable, so no attempt will be made to describe it. (Check it out here and see for yourself.) It certainly didn't do Meji any good, and she's now looking decidedly the worse for wear in her cell in Tsuirakushiti. Nookie, bless her little heart, is still trying desperately to set things a-right, as magical chaos swirls around her (or rather, around Meji). Collateral damage from this chaos is the transformation of Ellis into what can only be described as a "catboy," which he finds horrifying, reasonably enough.
Nothing new -- yet -- of Sarine and the Amraphels, who are still being held prisoner in Tsuirakushiti. It's pretty clear that their time is coming, though.
As of 7 October 2010, all the forces are coming together for a grand set-to at Praenubilus Astu. Ianilis and the Ensigerum have arrived, Ian has started to raise an army of zombies, and apparently, the attack has started, with results as yet unknown. At least that's the way it all looks as seen from Tsuirakushiti, where a testy teleconference between elven high mucky-mucks and Councilman Ichiro Hinadori (Meji's grandfather) got interrupted and a "looping" emergency message from the skyless city started to be received in its wake. Gramps has figured out that all is not well, and has ordered the release of prisoners Sarine Elle and Jon and Sara Amraphel, so that they can join the fleet of Tsuirakuan airships heading to the elven capital to see what's going on.
What's going on with Meji herself? Very good question, without a clear answer yet. She dropped in earlier on her old instructor, Professor Yukiri, to explain what was wrong with all the textbooks in his office. It's fair to say that this gave him something of a jolt, but apparently some kind of order has been restored and Meji is under observation, although Sarine and the Amraphels have been given strict instructions not to take her along to Praenubilus Astu.
All told, we're heading for a grand climax to the story here. Stay tuned.
As of 8 November 2010, the final battle between Good and Evil (or at least between Ianilis and everyone else) is about to begin in Praenubilus Astu. Sarine, Jon, Sara, Ellis, and at least a couple of the Paedagogusi have been gated into some old chamber beneath the skyless city, and have emerged to see the carnage that the battle has produced. As yet, we haven't seen the battle itself, but that's clearly coming soon. Meji, meanwhile, continues to be confined to quarters back in Tsuirakushiti, while the Tsuirakuans try to figure out exactly what happened to her.
Watch closely, folks. The grand finale can't be far away now, although at the moment, some Errant Commentary is in progress while Poe gets it all ready to go.
As of 7 December 2010 (appropriately enough), Sarine and the Amraphels are finally getting a good look at just what's going on in Praenubilus Astu, and it isn't a pretty sight. Ianilis and the Ensigerum have arrived to start the final battle, and so far, they're winning, as Ian manages to ignore the Inanire 312s that have been hurled at him. Ensigerum honcho Paul has struck a lethal blow, and elven Commander Nisotta has taken one. We don't know how other named characters are faring, but things definitely don't look good for the elves. Meanwhile, Meji continues to be sequestered back at Tsuirakushiti, although one can't help but have the sneaking suspicion that her time is coming. Anyway, the final battle between Good and Evil (or maybe between Evil and Even More Evil) is definitely under way.
As of 3 January 2011, we're in a minor hold in Errant Story, as filler art by guest artists covers for Poe while he deals with a death in the family. Our condolences, and take all the time you need, first things first.
There's plenty of death going around in the Poe-verse, too, as the climactic battle in Praenubilus Astu lurches toward its no-doubt-bloody conclusion. Sarine Elle, the Amraphels, Ellis, and assorted heliomancers from Tsuiraku have discovered that the malign forces of Ianilis include not only fairly disgusting zombies, a piece of one of which is making revolting noises at their feet, but also the Ensigerum, with all that that implies. They've derived this unwelcome bit of news from an unnamed elf who's come running to them for help as a monk stalks him. It isn't clear where the battle is going to go from here, but it'll be grisly, you can bet on that.
Of the Senilis-possessed Meji Hinadori back in Tsuirakushiti, no news -- which is not necessarily good news. She was last seen faking unconsciousness in the office of Professor Yukiri, to gain some time in dealing with the thaumato-cops who showed up there to see what was going on. We can predict with some confidence that we haven't seen the last of her (them?).
As of 4 February 2011, the Senilisized Meji has regained enough control of herself for some magic use: first, to keep her touchingly loving grandfather from staying up worrying about her, then to fly off (for once, in a literal sense, without "the handle" appended) to visit her friend Bani Igaaru. Bani, not totally coincidentally, has been dragooned into helping arm the airship fleet (under the watchful eyes of General Izayoi and a military captain -- maybe the previously seen Captain Aphel, maybe not) for their imminent expedition to Praenubilus Astu. Meanwhile, Gramps is sleeping off the spell, which Meji also used on an unnamed guard, and which indeed the old man himself tried on her. Is insomnia a persistent problem in Tsuirakushiti? One wonders.
It certainly isn't a problem in Praenubilus Astu, where chaos, death and destruction seem to reign, although not necessarily in that order. Sarine, Jon, Sara, Ellis and an assortment of battlemages are coming to the conclusion that they are, as Jon puts it, "boned." This depressing conclusion follows from the fact that their expedition has been joined by an unnamed elf who's fleeing from a similarly unnamed monk -- a monk who looks like he's just stalking them (maybe for purposes of surveillance) rather than time-ninja-ing into an attack. This doesn't make the group very happy, although it's not clear that they're worse off this way than if the guy was attacking. In any event, it's now clear that the Ensigerum has linked up with Ian, which doesn't make anybody very happy.
As of 4 March 2011, the action is back in Praenubilus Astu, where the destruction of the Great Statue of Anilis is affording Jon an opportunity for some great snarkage. (Who would have imagined that "Planet of the Apes" was known in the Poe-verse? Not to be outdone, Nookie gets in a little snarkage of her own, playing resident art critic.) However, it's also giving him, his sister, Sarine and their Tsuirakuan buddies a sense of what they're up against.
Not to worry, though: help is on the way, not just in the form of the expected airship fleet, but also from some unexpected passengers. Meji has used her Senilisized powers to force her way onto one of the ships, causing General Izayoi to decide that he'd better go along to keep her company. This, in turn, causes Meji's friend Bani Igaaru, who was simply loading up the airship with supplies as grunt labor, to get dragooned into going as well. Bani's initial reaction was mainly shock at her friend's grossly amplified magical capabilities (she did a great double take on realizing that Meji was flying), but by now it has dawned on her that this isn't going to be exactly a low-risk junket. The Errant Commentary at the end of the recently-completed chapter makes this point too, not entirely to the liking of Misa, who sees herself being predicted to fill the red-shirted-ensign role. Whether this assessment is accurate remains to be seen.
As of 7 April 2011, the action is still in Praenubilus Astu, and the various combatants are still getting ready to fight. Sarine has more or less taken charge of the mixed force of Tsuirakuans and elves, splitting them into two groups, one to fight a delaying action while the other uses the warp gate to get out of Dodge. Sarine has put Misa in charge of the second group, at first meeting some resistance, as Misa had been hoping to show that she's actually worth something by fighting and dying valiantly. (What a great idea.) Since the second group is also going to be in all kinds of danger, Misa has been adequately reassured about her worth, and has taken on the assignment. Following a long-awaited (whether by Nookie or Sara Amraphel or both is not clear) smooch between Sarine and Jon, who's staying by her side like a nice loyal pet human, the rear guard is about to make their stand. The actual state of the battle isn't clear, but ominous rumbles in the distance suggest that something is about to happen.
No news of most of the other characters, but it won't be long in coming, probably.
As of May 9, 2011, push is about to come to shove, as Mejinilis, Bani and various Tsuirakuan battlemages are en route to Praenubilus Astu to join the party. And ah, that party! Jon has hatched a scheme to try to put one over on the seemingly unstoppable coalition of Ianilis (and his zombies) and the Ensigerum forces under Anita and Paul. This led to Ian "shooting" a pair of titmoths at Ian, which has caused a certain degree of confusion. Meanwhile, Jon's little sis has whisked him out of harm's way using her time-ninja powers. Of course, one can't help but have a suspicion that harm is still going to find him, but oh well.
As of July 4, 2011, the climactic battle is well under way. Sarine has had what she describes as an "insane idea": try to goad Anita into a one-on-one battle so that the Amraphels can escape from the Ensigerum, and everyone else can escape, period. This might indeed seem like an insane idea, given Anita's fearsome combat skills, but Sarine has, and uses, an ace up her sleeve: the last Inanire 312 anti-magic grenade, which stops Anita's time-ninja magic in its tracks. An actual duel between the two is getting started, as Anita's lieutenant Paul tries to deal with Jon and Sara.
Note also that to the approval of either Sara or Nookie -- each denies it, but there aren't any other choices -- Jon was sent into this escapade with a kiss for good luck courtesy of Sarine. It was all very demure, very reserved, no serious fanservice here -- yet. Sarine, meanwhile, is marshaling a band of elves, plus Tsuirakuan heliomancers, to fight a delaying action to let the main body of surviving elves, shepherded by Misa, escape from the underground city. It's too early to tell whether this tender moment will have lasting repercussions.
As of July 4, 2011, the climactic battle is well under way. Sarine has had what she describes as an "insane idea": try to goad Anita into a one-on-one battle so that the Amraphels can escape from the Ensigerum, and everyone else can escape, period. This might indeed seem like an insane idea, given Anita's fearsome combat skills, but Sarine has, and uses, an ace up her sleeve: the last Inanire 312 anti-magic grenade, which stops Anita's time-ninja magic in its tracks. An actual duel between the two is getting started, as Anita's lieutenant Paul tries to deal with Jon and Sara.
Otherwise, we don't know much about how the battle is going, and little new has happened in the last two months of real time to shed light on it. Beyond Praenubilus Astu, however, there has been excitement, as the Senilisized Meji Hinadori has become impatient with the airship fleet's slow progress toward the elven city, and has simply caused the Akizuki Maru, which she had commandeered, and its sister ship, the Ikazuchi Maru, to "poit" into a wormhole in space to speed things up. This has mightily impressed the other Tsuirakuans on the airships, notably her friend Bani Igaaru and commanding officer General Izayoi, but we don't know its significance yet.
As of September 8, 2011, the body count in the grand battle at Praenubilus Astu is getting rather high, and it promises to be higher yet before long. Anita and Paul appear to have been given their quietus, Anita by being cut nigh in half by Sara Amraphel in the middle of a duel to the death with Sarine (who had thoughtfully reserved an Inanire 312 for just such a contingency), Paul by a bullet to the head from Jon. The good guys have been taking casualties, too: Ellis, who had joined Nookie and Kawaii in harassing the mad Ian, made the mistake of falling literally into Ian's clutches, and has disappeared with a flash as a result of a hyper-powerful Dispel cast by Ian. It isn't clear yet whether this disappearance is permanent, but don't get your hopes up.
Meanwhile, the airship fleet that Meji had teleported through a hole in space has arrived outside Praenubilus Astu to join the fun. Meji seems to have realized, to her distress, that something has happened to Ellis. However, the warriors haven't yet figured a way through the magical Barrier erected by Ian around the underground city. Patience; if Meji really does know about Ellis, she'll be so enraged that she'll think of something to punch through the barrier and get at Ian -- if she doesn't just blow up the world entirely, using her Senilis-supercharged powers.
As of 8 October 2011, the grand battle in Praenubilus Astu is lurching toward its no doubt spectacular conclusion. The Senilisized Meji, enraged by the apparent destruction of her familiar Ellis (and believe us, an enraged Meji is a baaad thing), has figured a way through the barrier that the Anilisized Ian has erected around the underground city: bore through it with the world's largest, most magical auger. Remarkably enough, this seems to have worked. She's caught Ian gloating over his dastardly plan and therefore semi-unawares, although he's now figured out that things are going to go a bit -- differently than he intended. The two have collided in midair with a mighty crash and a flash of light, serving to illuminate (and possibly blow away) Sarine, Sara and Jon, who have been working with a Tsuirakuan Lieutenant (the woman with the long blond hair) to get as many refugees out of the place as possible before it collapses around their ears. How they'll fare in this noble endeavor, in view of the almost nuclear flash coming down from above, remains to be seen.
As of 5 November 2011, the grand finale in Praenubilus Astu continues to lurch toward its conclusion, slowed somewhat by real-world health concerns on the part of the indispensable Impy. (Get well soon, we miss you.) The Senilisized Meji Hinadori looked for a while like she might be willing to listen to reason(sic!) as expressed by Ian, but when she remembered that Ian had wiped out her familiar by means of a Dispel spell, the fight was on. Her Senilification seems to have given her the ability to cause magic to stop working, at least locally, so the combat is uniquely non-magical, having started with an exchange of head butts that don't do their noses any good. Something that we know, but perhaps Ian does not, is that Meji has found and scooped up a handgun left sitting around when Jon quite sensibly split the scene. Rumors that it has a "Chekhov" trademark are false, but one can't help thinking that it's going to enter the action somehow, probably in a way that Ian won't appreciate.
As of 3 December 2011, the grand finale in Praenubilus Astu might -- might -- have come to a conclusion, courtesy of a pistol that Jon thoughtfully left lying around so that Meji could find it. (Rumors that there was a big "Chekhov" label on it when found are false, probably.) As far as we can tell, she used this conveniently provided weapon to bring the battle with Ianilis to a sudden, violent, and messy end; at the very least, there was a scene with her holding Ian's lifeless body, the back of its head rather messily disrupted. The fact that both Ian's body and Meji's eyes started to glow right afterward is ... ominous.
Jon and Sarine have taken note of this finale, as they have popped out of a hatch leading to the escape tunnels, to be surprised by a levitating Meji rather nonchalantly asking "'Sup?" Well, she ought to know if anyone would, don't you think?
As of 7 January 2012, the grand battle in Praenubilus Astu seems to have finally come to an end, although one last bit of terminal(?) stupidity by the elves may lead to a bit more bloodshed -- their own blood, almost certainly. Meji has confirmed that Ian is dead, most likely blown away by a gunshot from a pistol conveniently dropped by
ChekhovJon earlier in proceedings so that Meji could pick it up. With the main Big Bad kaput and the surviving Ensigerum having left the scene for who-knows-where (the Ensigerum village, presumably), things should be heading for the happily-ever-after stage -- should.
Unfortunately, it's not that simple. Some unnamed elven idiot (we'll call him E.I. for short -- it would be nice if Poe would name a few more of these elf mooks) is now blustering at Meji to "surrender" (sic) Senilis and Anilis, or else the elves will come hunting her with everything they can still manage. E.I. has demanded that Sarine, Misa, and even the Paedagogusi on scene (Nookie and Kawaii) stop Meji from leaving with her divine passengers, which is producing some quite understandable snarkage from Jon, not to mention a look on Meji's face not unlike the one Indiana Jones had when he blew the sword swinger away in the memorable "Raiders of the Lost Ark" scene. It wouldn't be unreasonable to expect the outcome of this final confrontation to be much the same as that one. Anyway, there it all stands, and the end of the story really is drawing nigh.
As of 6 February 2012, the grand battle in Praenubilus Astu has finally ended -- as has the main part of Errant Story itself. All that remains now is an Epilogue, preceded by Errant Commentary from Bani and Sara, performed with their usual panache.
So what happened? Since last month, not all that much, really. In response to the blustering by a particularly idiotic elf leader that was going on at the beginning of the month, Meji has simply let it be known that if the elves keep going after half elves (any half elf, not just her), she'll simply cause every last elf in Praenubilus Astu to simply die, period, no ifs, ands or buts. Remarkably enough, this threat seemed to get through the thick elven heads, allowing Meji to levitate away in search of some long-overdue rest, and leaving everybody else (Sara, Jon, Sarine, etc. -- the surviving main characters are all in Praenubilus Astu) to wonder what's coming next.
So what a long, strange trip it's been. The Epilogue should be starting shortly, and that will be the end of Errant Story as we know it -- but take heart, there will be sequels.
In news of the wiki itself, almost all the pages seem to be displaying archived episodes properly now, although there might be some stragglers. And of course, Errant Road is still chock full of adventures and curious characters. Finally, note that Impy is finally regaining her health, at least to the point where she can post messages again, if not get the store fully back operational quite yet. Bravo, Scary Little Red-Headed Girl; we've been pulling for you!