Our intrepid heroes were returning to Great Forks after meeting with the Walker in Darkness. Before they could reach it, however, each member of the Circle awoke to the profound sense that they were needed, somewhere to the East. It was not long after setting out that they realized they were returning to Oakhollow, nearly a year since last they visited. When they were no more than an hour from the village they heard the sounds of battle, and closing they saw a strange sight. A man they recognized from the village was battling a hobgoblin, one of the weaker Fair Folk foot soldiers but still more than a match for most mortals. Yet as they watched the man struck with a strange martial arts technique and his fist exploded with golden light, slaying the creature. Before any questions could be asked he greeted the Circle with relief, saying they were expected and urging them to push on to the village proper.
Our Heroes arrived to find Oakhollow profoundly changed. What had once been a moderate village was now a large town, and well on it’s way to being a city. New construction was evident, and nowhere more than in the center of town. Here a white marble temple had been raised, and before it stood four statues, expertly depicting each of our Solar heroes in heroic pose. They looked around in shocked wonder, trying to ascertain what had happened when they saw a familiar face. Joran, the man whose leg Tien Shan had severed seasons ago when first they came to Oakhollow, moved confidently across the town square on the elaborate prosthetic Arrius had forged for him. He smiled in greeting, and told all. He was now known as Steel-legged Joran, and was one of the town elders. Much had changed, he told them, and soon Pax realized his social magic had had much more far reaching consequences than he had thought. The cultural hatred of demons he had imparted to the town had shaped it, lending them will and resolve to battle the evils that beset the men of this world. Also, they had rapidly come to idolize their heroes and the god they represented, offering them reverance that bordered on worship.
While he spoke Joran showed them around the town. As the Circle watched, they heard the sounding of bells, and the townsfolk stopped to face the setting sun, offering him thanks and praise for the day and beseeching his protection. Surprised, they asked Joran who simply explained “Little Beam taught us.” Apparently this Little Beam had approached the village and taught them the rites of the Sun after their new temple was built. Since then, Joran said, they have had unprecedented prosperity, leading many to move there as word spread. Little Beam had also brought someone named Falling Star to train the town’s militia in that martial art they had observed earlier. “But we still need more,” he said. “We need you.”
In speaking with Joran, as well as Silk Blossom who was now the Sun’s priestess and a town elder herself, the Cirlce learned the firghtening truth. The Fair Folk raids, always a minor problem this far east, had intsified until they could only represent one thing; a major incursion. The militia drilled constantly, while the blacksmiths labored night and day to forge weapons of cold iron at Silk Blossom’s instruction, but still the raids grew worse until now the town was in great danger of being overrun. And so they had invoked a ritual, taught to Silk Blossom by LIttle beam, to call the Solars to them in their time of need, invoking the Unconquered Sun’s ancient role as the Guarding Star, warder of Creation. And so they had been called here, to save a place that now considered itself to be their home…