Sep 16-17, 253AC
The three of you, along with a team of Spellknights, went to try and set an ambush at the drop site.
The plan was for Devon to cast Disguise Self and look like Bonte and complete the ritual as if nothing was amiss. Ideally, he would then “see” the location where the next set of artifacts were being kept, and you could then both investigate those and any other leads that happened to arise. Talm, Annalyn, and Seccain (another Spellknight would be hiding near the drop site to observe, while Vella, Bartooke, and a couple others would camp farther down the road to serve as backup if necessary.
The site had a house in the centre of a small clearing, and the “ritual” Bonte performed was to begin and end at an altar inside the house. Around the border of the house, however, was a strange magical aura, of intermingled Enchantment and Abjuration magic. (Not the two schools layered on top of each other, but some completely separate school that could be best described as a blend of the two.) Confident in the magical buffs you had laid on him, however, Devon continued through this magical barrier and into the house as planned, and continued with the ritual.
To get around the fairly small radius of Detect Magic, Talm cast an invisibility spell on Seccain, and sent him off to investigate more of the clearing than could be safely observed from hiding. From outside the house, he was able to observe an active field of mixed Illusion/Enchantment magic overlaid onto the floorboards in the corner of the house. Since Devon had been fine after crossing the mysterious Enchantment/Abjuration threshold, he decided to go inside and investigate further.
At this point, Annalyn (as a mouse on the windowsill) detected a spell being cast — divination/enchantment that morphed into pure enchantment — after which Seccain spoke aloud “We’re Spellknights, Bonte told some folks about strange magic going on here, and we came to help them investigate.” An abjuration effect then appeared as Seccain’s invisibility was broken, and he began running out the door signalling everyone to abort the mission. (After catching up with him, you learned that the abjuration effect was him casting Resistance on himself to help break whatever compulsion he had been put under, and that the act of casting that spell broke his invisibility.)
Devon initially attempted to keep the ritual going and proceed as planned, but after Vella convinced the others that the time for subtlety was over (they clearly knew we were there), you instead went for a full charge on the base. With some well placed Detect Magics, your team was able to lock and eventually capture the man, who was trying to escape the house invisibly by coming up from the well (apparently connected to the basement of the house via some underground passage).
Some preliminary (and largely unsuccessful) attempts were made to question him, while Enada performed a full magical-history sweep of the area. You then began to take him back to the prison where Mian are being held.and