The Solar heroes had just returned from a successful campaign against the bandit king Barrow Black and his army, the Eyes in the Hills. When they returned to the city of Nexus with their company of mortal followers in tow, they found a message waiting for them. The four Solars had long speculated as to the location of their fifth member, for all have had fl ashes of recollection from the First Age, and they know they once counted a fifth Solar Exalt amongst their number, a member of the Eclipse Caste who completed their Perfect Circle of fellowship: the Five Corners of Creation joined together.
The note was unsigned, but sealed in golden wax and pressed with the unmistakable sigil of the Eclipse Caste. Little Shoe explained to the Solars that he was entrusted with this note in the trading town of Northeast Spoke by a beautiful woman with pale skin and dark hair, wearing a white robe, and that he’d been carrying it for six months, trying to fi nd the Circle. Their campaign against the Eyes in the Hills had been long, and ultimately, he’d decided his best chance would be to wait in Nexus for the characters to return. After some debate, the Solars decided to depart for the ruins at once, leaving their tired mortal followers to recuperate in Nexus and await their return. The Solars traveled across the Yellow River that lies to the north of Nexus, and then further north and east for four days, until they reached Northeast Spoke. In Northeast Spoke, they heard rumors of local bandits sporting the symbol of the Eyes in the Hills, once again demanding the payments taken by Barrow Black before his army was scattered. Could these be remnants of Barrow Black’s band, fled to the north after their defeat at the hands of the Circle, or perhaps another group of robbers who sought to take advantage of Barrow Black’s reputation? The rumors point further north, into the Valley of Death, a desolate expanse that had been avoided by the people of the region for as long as anyone can remember. Once they arrived, the area seemed familiar, and all the Solars had flashes of First Age memory. They knew now where the ruins were and asked Little Shoe to wait for them in the town while they proceeded north to the meeting point. After another half-day of travel, they have nearly arrived.