The College of the stars has put out a call for skilled private investigators following a theft from the dept. of Esoteric Arcana. Interested parties should report to the office of Prof. Black.
The party are hired by Prof. Black to recover the Jade puzzle-box that both contains and is the legendary Arch-Mage Vulstragorn. The party determine the theft was magical in nature and decide to try to trap the thief as they pretend to hand over a ransom for the cube. As they make their move however the mysterious thief unleashes the power of the cube and in a blinding flash of light the party fall into darkness.
They awaken within the cube, a diabolic maze of rooms each containing a seemingly random set of traps or strange constructs. In one a desecrated shrine to the Tender, which Vincent insists they rescue, and in another a dragon shaped construct which bargains with the party for their freedom and consumes the Draconic curse upon Rowan (drawing its essence into Vulstragorn's forged reality)
Eventually the party find the jade puzzle-box within a room of the cube, learning, in a nose-bleed inducing way, that they are trapped within it and it in turn is within itself. Vulstragorn reveals some Mage is manipulating his reality to their own ends and that to escape the party will have to find the exit, which he should be able to open.
To escape the party must overcome one last fiendish room, wherein one must chose to sacrifice themselves to save the others by drinking a magical potion. Alastair bites the bullet but is returned to life with a powerful wounding spell worked by Rowan.
At last they reach the exit and Vultragorn attempts to pull the party through the Gordian knot of twisted realities to free them. After some brief interference from the void within Carl, which momentarily hurls the party into the fractured realm of Vulknut, they are free.
They find themselves within the city sewers in a hidden enclave of the Magisterium, who have been using the Cube as a testing environment to psychoanalyze Acryn's adventurers to replace them with convincing clones.
The party defeat their mindless clones and capture the Magisterium sorcerer, who cutoff by the mystic ward around the city, is lacking the self confidence of most magisterium mages. All is not well as Vulstragorn, infected with the Draconic taint that once resided within Rowan, begins to lose control of his physical form, melting into tidal wave of jade flesh. As the sewer collapses Rowan calls upon his miraculous power and in a way he cannot pin down is able to halt on onslaught of Draconic energy within Vulstragorn, who is able to reform his cubic shape…albeit now as a 100m long cube of greenish flesh crushing part of the docks district.
The party are arrested for yet another major magical crime in the city but place the blame squarely on the Magisterium. Chiara Walker is delighted that finally they have captured one of the crimson mages alive…until the symbol on the man's head begins to burn as Carl and Rowan feel an arcane presence of immense puissance attempt to breach Acryn's wards. The sorcerer is kept alive by Vincent's healing as the party rush to the college and insert the Mage into the Probulator.
With the help of several faculty members Carl and Rowan weave a ritual to break the mystic connection linking the mage's mark to the powerful external presence. At the climax of the ritual, for a moment, reality is torn asunder and across countless leagues the party see a four armed figure upon a throne that burns with vast amounts of raw mana. For an instant it regards the party with a look of boundless arrogance and then the connection is severed.
Chiara takes the Magisterium Mage for questioning and thanks the party for recovering the first living source the city has obtained on the Mysterious group of wizard supremacists. Prof. Black rewards them for “safely” recovering Vulstragorn and helpfully probulates Rowan to tell him just how doomed he is. Vincent and Alastair are thanked for recovering the blessed Shrine and Alastair is pointed toward Captain Hopkins the recently appointed commander of Acryn's special top-secret military squad set up to deal with arcane threats (Thaumatergic Endangerment and Magical Peril Limitation Attack Rangers).
Over the next few weeks the talk of the city is the ornate green cube that now dominates the city southern skyline. Many citizens of the city are expressing increasing displeasure with the actions of the cities mages and several students of both colleges are beaten outside taverns by gangs of youths.
Everyone - 75 Acra from the college + 75 Acra from the City.
Everyone - Meat puppets; mindless clones of themselves, will stay alive as long as they are fed but without further magic are insensate.
Carl - The Grimoire of Vulstragorn - details his research on 'draconic spaces' and allows Carl to use +1 protomana in crazy draconic realities.
Alastair/Rowan - Having been brought back from the brink of death by Rowan the two are now linked by powerful wounding magics. Alastair cannot die while Rowan lives. Should Alastair ever bleed out he will find his wounds magically cured and take a heal 1, this will permanently decrease Rowan's body hits by 1. They will always be able to sense when each other are close.
Alastair - may have ceased aging after drinking the mysterious potion from the Cube…only time will tell.
Rowan - is purged of his draconic taint, passing this into Vulstragorn's cube.
Rowan - animates his meat puppet ritually, inserting his heart into his clone. There are now two Rowan Darrishes; either (but not both) may go adventures and GMs are free to have the other Rowan go off and do do Darrishesque things during larps. Rowan may also take the Favour Transcending Death Epic tree to represent one of the two copies surviving, or being rescued by his own clone.