The agents of Oronis of Kurn continued to enjoy the fruits of the hidden city while they planned not only the attack on Dregoth, but also what would come after.
The first obstacle was to find a way to prevent Dregoth from killing everyone in Raam to fuel his own defense. One method was via Dhaara’s great-great-great-great-grandfather, the potent elemental spirit of fire, who could possess someone and utilize his intrinsic connection to the Elemental Chaos to neutralize Dregoth’s death-magic. The problem was finding someone other than Dhaara powerful enough to contain such a spirit before combusting. They suddenly remembered that their old companion Safa was a potent pyrokinetic, and that affinity might come in handy.
Safa grudgingly agreed to allow herself to become possessed. As Dhaara’s ancestor filled Safa’s body, she burst into fire that did not burn her, her eyes became blue coals, and her flesh shifted to that of a powerful-looking male half-giant… although that latter effect had more to do with Safa being of the Khayal-race. The Ancestor seemed bemused by Safa’s shifting form, and indicated that this enabled even greater resistance to being burned up from the inside. He demonstrated Safa’s true appearance, much to her later shame and consternation, and managed to maintain his possession for about 45 minutes before she began to crisp, and he departed.
The second concern was how to prevent Tyr’s fate from happening to Raam once Dregoth was resurrected and had departed the world to become a god. Someone who had passed through the Pristine Tower would be required to rule over Raam. During their stay in Kurn, Oronis’ pupil, Eloyas Ardian, returned from his own sojourn through the Pristine Tower in the company of Kiran, Sa’asha, Aetolos, Banowir, and Kard, the party whose vigil the agents encountered before. At Shahzadi’s urging, Eloyas revealed his true form, that of an elongated, winged humanoid, clearly a much less mature stage of Oronis’ glorious state.
In studying Eloyas and his transformation, coupled with his previous studies, Najaf felt he had a much better understanding of what, exactly, the Tower does to people. It forges and purifies, transforming a person according to their deepest ideologies, and ties them intrinsically to reality itself. They become more real, and the world becomes more like them. In subsequent discussion with Oronis, Eloyas, and the others, Najaf speculated that he and his fellow agents could pass into the Tower as a group, much as the original 13 who became the Kings and Queens did so long ago, so long as they held to a common ideology or goal. Oronis, obviously, wished to present his own belief system, and Najaf made placating noises, but it was clear Najaf intended to forge himself and his companions into something entirely new…
But that all could wait until after Dregoth was dead. Eloyas demonstrated a greater sense of savvy when it came to politics than Oronis, and made it clear that if Raam was to be truly safe, Oronis himself would have to openly claim it, as the other Monarchs know of him, and consider him an equal. But, much like the Shadow King, or Abalach-Re down in New Antalus, Oronis would not actually have to set foot in Raam. He could stay in New Kurn and govern the city through powerful proxies, such as, say, his new Agents who were mostly native to that city.
This plan seemed the best one, and Oronis delegated Eloyas to accompany the Agents in their assassination attempt to provide backup for Dhaara’s Ancestor just to ensure that Dregoth’s ability to turn all of Raam into instant undead was curtailed.
The agents retreated to a carefully prepared room to discuss if there was any ideological common ground at all that they could forge to make a unified attempt at the Pristine Tower. The eventually came up with an ideology of cyclical change, that the world had become too static and decaying, that old needed to be torn down for new growth, new fertility, which in turn should be allowed to mature and die. Cities could fall, and rise and fall again. Change, natural cycles, rise and fall of ordered societies, would permit for a growing new world.
They then departed for the deep desert from which they contacted Mon Adderath, who met them. They reached a tentative final agreement. Mon Adderath gave them some pointers on Dregoth’s capabilities in a straight-up fight, and indicated the ways that he himself could indirectly aid them.
With that, they prepared to be presented to Dregoth as the champions who had advanced his interests in Tyr… as prelude to an attack.