Death of Torenal
A party of Glantrian heroes travels to Sundsvall, the capital of Alphatia, with another letter from Prince Etienne d’Ambreville to the Empress Eriadna. This is a follow-up to the letter wherein the Glantrians claimed to to know who murdered Troikithus, the Alphatia spy in Glantri City. In this new letter, Prince Etienne provides the Empress with more information proving that Troikithus was a an Alphatian spy; his intent is to further embarrass and inconvenience Eriadna.
While waiting for their audience with the Empress, these adventurers meet General Torenal, who is the leader of the Alphatian Empress’s elite guard and the father of some of Eriadna’s children. When last seen, the Glantrian’s and Torenal are chatting amicably in a waiting chamber near Eriadna’s throne room. What happens afterwards is in dispute.
Torenal and the Glantrians disappear. A day later, Alphatian investigators find the Glantrians, all drunk to unconsciousness, in a tenement in the Alphatian capital. Based on evidence in the tenement hideout — dust which turns out to be human remains, spell damage in the walls, and the use of a wish spell to extract memories from the Glantrian’s minds — the Alphatians conclude that the Glantrian emissaries teleported Torenal to their place of hiding, then murdered him with magical spells, burned his body, and scattered his ashes to the winds. Then, celebrate. Eriadna’s efforts to use a wish spell to resurrect Torenal fails for unknown reasons; the best guess is that the assassins used some sort of unknown magic to prevent his resurrection.
Naturally, the Empress is enraged. Her father, the former Emperor Tylian IV, takes charge of the investigation, and learns some interesting things with his magic.
The Glantrian assassins say the did not perform the murder, but have conflicting memories about the events. One set of memories has them speaking briefly with Torenal, who tells them to return tomorrow, as Eriadna cannot see them until then; in this memory, the Glantrians returned ot the inn where they were staying, fell asleep, and did not awaken until the Alphatian investigators found them in another place entirely (the tenement). In the second set of memories, Torenal told them to return tomorrow, and they were so offended by his presumption that they took him away to the tenement and murdered him out of petty revenge.
The Glantrians are confused by these twin sets of memories, but do not think of themselves as callous murderers and do not believe they killed Torenal. Eriadna, on the other hand, believes that the memories where the Glantrians are innocent have been planted somehow, in an attempt to hide the truth of the murder so they can escape justice. Tylian is sufficiently intrigued by the discrepancy that he hasn’t allowed Eriadna to kill the Glantrians yet.
Eriadna breaks off formal relations with Glantri, pending further information.