Sentinels of the Multiverse: Argent Adept
The Argent Adept features a multi-layered mechanic involving Instrument Cards which can activate the Perform and Accompany text of three types of Ongoing cards: Melodies, Harmonies, and Rhythms.
- Instrument Cards have powers which can activate certain Ongoing cards.
- Melody cards have Perform abilities, which are particularly strong.
- Harmony cards have Perform and Accompany abilities.
- Rhythm cards have Perform and Accompany abilities.
Perform and Accompany abilities are different from powers in that they must be activated by either an Instrument card or The Argent Adept's Innate Power. However, they are also more versatile as they can be used multiple times per turn, if there are multiple ways of activating them in play.
Incapacitated - Shadowy image Anthony Drake crucified on an X.
- Arcane Cadence (x4)
- Reveal the top 5 cards of your deck. Put 1 of them in your hand, 1 on the top of your deck, 1 on the bottom of your deck, 1 in your trash, and play 1.
- Art: A stylized version of the Argent Adept;
- Flavor-text: "Time for a little improvisation!" - The Argent Adept, Virtuoso of the Void #21
- Instrumental Conjuration (x4)
- Search your deck or trash for an Instrument card and put it into play. If you searched your deck, shuffle your deck. You may draw a card.
- Art: The Argent Adept bringing the instruments out another dimension;
- Flavor Text: "Virtuosos of the Ages, lend me your strength!" - The Argent Adept, Mother Earth One-Shot
- Polyphoric Flare (x2)
- The Argent Adept deals himself 2 Energy Damage. If he takes Damage this way, you may use a Power now.
- Art: Siege-Breaker grabbing the Argent Adept from behind;
- Flavor-Text: "Augh!" - Siege-Breaker, Vengeance #4
- Silver Shadow (x2)
- Activate an Accompany text. You may either draw a card or play a card now.
- Art: A picture of the Prime Wardens;
- Flavor-Text: "Now is the time for bold actions!" - The Argent Adept, Prime Wardens #1
- Vernal Sonata (x4)
- Each Hero Target regains 1 HP. Each Player may take 1 card other than Vernal Sonata from their trash and put it on top of their deck.
- Art: Tempest petting a dog with the Argent Adept in the background;
- Flavor-Text: "Our allies come in all shapes and sizes." - Tempest, Prime Wardens #6
- Rhapsody of Vigor (x2)
- Perform: Up to 5 Targets regain 1 HP each.
- Art: The Argent Adept giving help to the Visionary and the Idealist;
- Flavor-Text: "Prepare yourselves. The worst is yet to come." - The Argent Adept, Freedom Five Annual #10
- Sarabande of Destruction (x2)
- Perform: Destroy 1 Ongoing or Environment card.
- Art: The Argent Adept fighting Akash'Bhuta;
- Flavor-Text: "Your base machinations shall fail!" - The Argent Adept, Ra: God of the Sun #179
- Scherzo of Frost and Flame (x2)
- Perform: The Argent Adept deals 1 Target 1 Cold Damage, then deals 1 Target 1 Fire Damage.
- Art: The Argent Adept fighting Ruin with ice and fire;
- Flavor-Text: "A touch of the elements to keep foes at bay." - The Argent Adept, Prime Wardens #17
- Counterpoint Bulwark (x2)
- Perform: Select up to 2 Targets. Until the start of your next turn, reduce Damage dealt to those Targets by 1.
- Accompany: One Player may draw 1 card now.
- Art: The Argent Adept protected from the Arachnoid;
- Flavor-Text: "Once again, evil mindlessly strives for nothing." - The Argent Adept, Virtuoso of the Void #17
- Inventive Preparation (x2)
- Perform: Each Player may look at the top card of their Hero deck, then replace it or discard it.
- Accompany: One Player, other than you, may play 1 card now.
- Art: The Argent Adept playing his horn to help the Visionary;
- Flavor-Text: "He's noisy, but effective." - The Visionary, Burying the Blade #5
- Syncopated Onslaught (x2)
- Perform: Select up to 2 Targets. Until the start of your next turn, increase Damage dealt by those Targets by 1.
- Accompany: The Argent Adept deals 1 Target 1 Sonic Damage.
- Art: The Argent Adept emitting energy while surrounded by robots;
- Flavor-Text: "To me, heroes! We shall win this day!" - The Argent Adept, Freedom Five #629
- Alacritous Subdominant (x2)
- Perform: One Player may play 1 card now.
- Accompany: You may use a Power now. If you do, destroy this card.
- Art: The Argent Adept is playing his harp to help Tachyon;
- Flavor-Text: "Whoa! I'm keeping you around!" - Tachyon, Virtuoso of the Void #4
- Cedistic Dissonant (x2)
- Perform: Destroy an Instrument. If you do, destroy any 1 card in play, other than a Character card.
- Accompany: Discard 2 cards. Draw 3 cards.
- Art: The Argent Adept breaks his bell to rip apart a spaceship;
- Flavor-Text: "Power for power. Be no more." - The Argent Adept, NightMist #61
- Inspiring Supertonic (x2)
- Perform: One Player may use a Power now.
- Accompany: The Argent Adept regains 2 HP.
- Art: Mr. Fixer destroying a Blade-Bot;
- Flavor-Text: "Strike swiftly!" - The Argent Adept, Burying the Blade #5
- Akpunku's Drum (x1)
- Power: Activate the Accompany text of a Rhythm card and the Perform text of a Melody card.
- Art: An African drum in the Savannah;
- Flavor-Text: "How can this mere mortal counter my despair?!" - Gloomweaver, NightMist #21
- Drake's Pipes (x1)
- Power: Activate the Perform text of up to 2 different Melody cards.
- Art: Silver double pipes resting on a tree;
- Flavor-Text: "Ah, the pipes! My specialty!" - Anthony Drake, Toll of Destiny #3
- Eydisar's Horn (x1)
- Power: Activate the Perform text of a Melody card and the Accompany text of a Harmony card.
- Art: An ornate silver horn on a wood stand;
- Flavor-Text: "The call which heralds your destruction!" - The Argent Adept, Mother Earth One-Shot
- Musaragni's Harp (x1)
- Power: Activate the Perform text of a Harmony card and the Accompany text of a Harmony card.
- Art: A harp sitting on a table;
- Flavor-Text: "Its strings can play as quietly as a mouse, or as loud as a lion!" - The Argent Adept, Prime Wardens #2
- Telamon's Lyra (x1)
- Power: Activate the Perform text of a Harmony card and the Accompany text of a Rhythm card.
- Art: An antique lyra resting on a pillar;
- Flavor-Text: "I only hope that more virtuoso instruments have survived the ages..." - Anthony Drake, Toll of Destiny #4
- Xu's Bell (x1)
- Power: Activate the Perform text of a Rhythm card and the Accompany text of either a Rhythm card or a Harmony card.
- Art: An Oriental Bell on a table;
- Flavor-Text: "Hey, you can't touch that! It's a priceless artifact!" - Dr. Blake Washington, Toll of Destiny #4
|Power Source:||Song and Magic
|Occupation:||Info Box: Optional
|First Appearance:||Toll of Destiny #1
Virtuoso of the Void
- Base: If we work in concert, we will generate the harmonies of victory!
- Akash'Bhuta: Another singing magician. I have eaten many of your kind. You're next.
- AA: Your ageless chaos shall not destroy the world in this age!
- Base: Let us strike the chords of harmony! Stand fast against discordance!
- Akash'Bhuta: We meet again. You will fail again, but this time, I will take your voice. Prepare for the end, minstrel
- AA: I am no mere minstrel, just like you are not truly part of the natural order. Let us begin.
Xtreme Prime Wardens
Prime War: Argent Adept
Not Yet Released
Not Yet Released
Meta: Argent Adept
Main Episode: Episode 29
- Podcasts/Episode 3
- Podcasts/Episode 7
- Podcasts/Episode 12
- Podcasts/Episode 13
- Podcasts/Episode 14
- Podcasts/Episode I-5
- Podcasts/Episode 23
- Podcasts/Episode I-6
- Podcasts/Episode 25
- Podcasts/Episode 27
- Podcasts/Episode I-7
- Podcasts/Episode 29
- Podcasts/Episode 30
- Podcasts/Episode 31
- Podcasts/Episode 33
- Podcasts/Episode L-1
- Podcasts/Episode 35
- Podcasts/Episode 37
- Podcasts/Episode I-10
- Podcasts/Episode 39
- Podcasts/Episode I-11
- Podcasts/Episode 41
- Podcasts/Episode 45
- Podcasts/Episode I-12
- Podcasts/Episode 46
- Podcasts/Episode 47
- Podcasts/Episode 49
- Podcasts/Episode I-13
- Podcasts/Episode I-14
- Podcasts/Episode 52
- Podcasts/Episode 54
- Podcasts/Episode 57
- Podcasts/Episode 58
- Podcasts/Episode 59
- Podcasts/Episode 60
- Podcasts/Episode 61
- Podcasts/Episode 62
- Podcasts/Episode 63
- Podcasts/Episode 64
- Podcasts/Episode X-1
- Podcasts/Episode 67
- Podcasts/Episode 71
- Podcasts/Episode 72
- Podcasts/Episode X-3
- Podcasts/Episode I-19
- Podcasts/Episode 77
- Podcasts/Episode I-20
- Podcasts/Episode L-2
- Podcasts/Episode 79
- Podcasts/Episode 80
- Podcasts/Episode I-21
- Podcasts/Episode X-7
- Podcasts/Episode 81
- Podcasts/Episode 82
- Podcasts/Episode 83
- Podcasts/Episode I-22
- Podcasts/Episode 84
- Podcasts/Episode 87
- Podcasts/Episode 88
- Podcasts/Episode I-23
- Podcasts/Episode 91
- Podcasts/Episode I-24
- Podcasts/Episode 94
- Podcasts/Episode I-25
- Podcasts/Episode 95
- Podcasts/Episode 96
- Podcasts/Episode I-26
- Podcasts/Episode 98
- Podcasts/Episode 100
- Podcasts/Episode 102
- Podcasts/Episode 105
- Podcasts/Episode 106
- Podcasts/Episode 110
- Podcasts/Episode I-30
- Podcasts/Episode 111
- Podcasts/Episode I-31
- Podcasts/Episode I-32
- Podcasts/Episode L-3
- Podcasts/Episode 118
- Podcasts/Episode 119
- Podcasts/Episode I-34
- Podcasts/Episode 122
- Podcasts/Episode 125
- Podcasts/Episode 126
- Podcasts/Episode 130
- Podcasts/Episode I-37
- Podcasts/Episode I-38
- Podcasts/Episode 133
- Podcasts/Episode 134
- Podcasts/Episode I-39
- Podcasts/Episode 136
- Podcasts/Episode I-40
- Podcasts/Episode I-41
- Podcasts/Episode 142
- Podcasts/Episode 143
- Podcasts/Episode I-42
- Podcasts/Episode 148
- Podcasts/Episode 149
- Podcasts/Episode 150
- Podcasts/Episode 152
- Podcasts/Episode L-4
- Podcasts/Episode 153
- Podcasts/Episode 155
- Podcasts/Episode P-3
- Podcasts/Episode P-4
- Podcasts/Episode 157
- Podcasts/Episode P-6
- Podcasts/Episode P-7
- Podcasts/Episode 160
- Podcasts/Episode P-8
- Podcasts/Episode 161
- Podcasts/Episode B-1
- Podcasts/Episode 164
- Podcasts/Episode 165
- Podcasts/Episode B-3
- Podcasts/Episode 168
- Podcasts/Episode 169
- Podcasts/Episode 170
- Podcasts/Episode 173
- Podcasts/Episode I-45
- Podcasts/Episode 174
- Podcasts/Episode 175
- Podcasts/Episode 176
- Podcasts/Episode S-1
- Podcasts/Episode I-47
- Podcasts/Episode 182
- The card "Polyphoric Flare" features Siege Breaker, part of the crew led by La Capitan.
- "Counterpoint Bulwark" features the Arachnoid, one of The Dreamer's projections.
- "Cedistic Dissonant" portrays the Adept destroying the TCF Conqueror, Grand Warlord Voss' dreadnought ship. The instrument that the Adept is sacrificing to do so is Xu's Bell.
- Baron Blade's flying platform appears in "Inventive Preparation."
- "Alacritous Subdominant" shows Argent Adept using Musaragni's Harp to empower Tachyon in the Realm of Discord.
- "Rhapsody of Vigor" shows the Adept with the Idealist from The Southwest Sentinels and the Visionary.
- "Sarabande of Destruction" portrays the Adept blasting Akash'Bhuta.
- "Scherzo of Frost and Flame" depicts the Adept freezing Ruin.
- "Vernal Sonata" shows Tempest petting a dog while the Adept looks on.
- "Silver Shadow" features the Adept surrounded by The Prime Wardens, including Haka, Fanatic, Captain Cosmic, and Tempest.
- "Inspiring Supertonic" features Mr. Fixer crushing the robotic decoy that Baron Blade left in his prison cell when he escaped prior to the Vengeance events.
- Confirmed by Christopher during a Q&A session: The Argent Adept is a direct reference to the character Kvothe from The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss. In the the book Kvothe is described as having fiery red hair, and a major scene involves him playing his lute to earn an honorific, one that includes a set of "silver pipes." (A small brooch showing a pair of silver pipes, representing his talent as a musician.) A Kvothe promo card for the Argent Adept was displayed at the Vengeance release party, with the lowest starting HP (23) of any hero excluding The Sentinels.
- Dr. Blake Washington, the alter-ego of Ra, is featured in the flavor text of "Xu's Bell."
- This was the hero deck that required the most effort by Christopher.
- Virtuosos of the Void whose names, place of origin, titles, and instruments are known:
- Akpunku, a woman in Africa, The Amber Accompanist, Drum (AA's deck)
- Telamon, ancient Greece, The Cerulean Sorcerer, Lyra (AA's deck)
- Xu Li-hua, Han-dynasty China, The Jade Jinx, Bell (AA's deck)
- Eydisar Ragnarsson, Scandinavia, The Sallow Skald, Horn (AA's deck)
- Tomasina Musaragni, a nun in Renaissance Italy, Sister Saffron, Harp (AA's deck)
- Anthony Drake, bartender from California, The Argent Adept, Pipes (AA's deck, but this is AA himself)
- Franz Vogel, Germany, The Crimson Conductor, a conductor's Baton carved with rose thorns (the Carbon Adept in Biomancer's deck, plus the "Dark Dynamics" variant of AA's character card - Franz got involved with Blood Magic).
- Ruairí O'Ceallaigh (pronouned Rory O'Kelly), Ireland, The Chartreuse Chanteuse, Fiddle (Tactics)
- Argent Adept’s birthday is listed as February 15th which is also Christopher’s brother Anthony’s birthday. Anthony is also known for writing the “Christopher and Adam reading letters to you” theme song.
To Other Works
- "Inspiring Supertonic" portrays Mr. Fixer fighting a robotic version of Baron Blade. This "Blade-bot" is likely a reference to the "Doombots", the robotic doppelgangers of Marvel Comics villain Dr. Doom.
- Kvothe Six String from The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss.
- The art on Argent Adept's Virtuoso of the Void original incapacitated side is an homage to Wolverine crucified in a similar manner on the cover of Uncanny X-Men #251.
- The Argent Adept has some similarities with Marvel's Doctor Strange, as well. Both have alliterative titles representing a position held: Virtuoso of the Void vs. Sorcerer Supreme, both wear long capes and are often shown hovering around a conflict, both use collections of older relics to aid them, and when using their power there is often glowing effects around their hands.
Questions Answered on The Letters Page
- Notes from Letters Page 29 - Argent Adept:
- What exactly is the Void (we're told that there's just the one Void in the multiverse, but after OblivAeon and the timelines are closed off from one another, how does the Void factor into that)? If it's a "void" how do things live there? Why does it need a Virtuoso? Is it related to the nowhen/nowhere that Chrono-Ranger was stuck until La Comodora picked him up? Chrono-Ranger was not stuck in the Void - he was stuck outside of reality and while the Void is a weird part of reality, it's still part of reality. Every reality has its own The Void, but all The Voids are the same (as in, they always operate the same) - the Void is intrinsically linked to physical reality (each to its own physical reality). It's a place, but also an energy/force - the Virtuoso isn't required by the Void, but they're humans who have learned to use the Void; it's not like the Void calls them to a purpose. Even the border between the Void and reality is vague "like jelly in a cheesecloth" it just kind of seeps in. It's a place of magical and psychic energies, but it's not the source of psychic or magical power (except for the Virtuosos who learned to harness it) - although people like Nightmist might use it as a power source to fuel their other magical abilities. In short - it's weird.
- In the Nightmist and Gloomweaver episodes it was mentioned that the Void is separate from, but connected to all realities - post-OblivAeon, does the Argent Adept suffer from some power loss due to the separation of all realities? Does his connection to the Void mean that he could still work out some means of traveling to another reality? This goes back to the previous question, but brings up something that may have been less than clear in previous episodes - while every reality has a Void, and each of those Voids works the same way, they are still separate instances of "Void"-ness and so the end of the Multiverse doesn't really have an effect in these ways. Also, Virtuosos have an intrinsic link to the Void that is inalienable to them - it's not like he has access to a "little" of it or a "lot" of it, he just has access to it.
- Between AA, Nightmist, and Harpy who has the most connection to it? Have they talked about it? AA is connected to the Void. Full stop. The other two have had contact with the void and have used it somewhat, but they're just magicians who use spells and happen to have done some Void stuff - they're not "connected" to it. Void effects are different than quote-unquote "magic".
- How does the Void pick its Virtuoso? It is not sentient and doesn't pick the Virtuoso. Being attuned to it is more of a natural aptitude than anything, and somebody has to be both naturally attuned to the Void and have a natural aptitude for music to be a Virtuoso - a rare combination even in terms of the one-in-a-million level of rare that is Void attunement itself.
- Does the Virtuoso even have to be human? No - you'd need to be sapient. There's an argument to be had that even an AI could be a Virtuoso, but an alien with the right attributes are certainly capable.
- Nightmist entered the Void and gained power thereby; could anybody do this or would you have to already be somebody who could use magic? You'd have to have some magical ability to survive there considering the inherent danger of being there (you'd also need magic to get there in the first place, but it's possible that somebody else could send you there if you lacked the ability yourself).
- Can it just pick a person to give power to become a Virtuoso? No, as mentioned it's not sentient.
- Could it be a power source for RPG characters? Yes.
- Why is the Virtuoso of the Void a music-themed position? Does it have to do with the creative/logical dynamic involved in music? Yes, there is something about Void energy that music just tunes in to - it's an expression of both art and math and an innate talent for that is necessary to even hope to be a Virtuoso.
- It's stated that when picking up an Instrument a new Virtuoso would learn what goes with that title, but do they get knowledge of how to play that instrument or did Anthony have to fumble around with the Bell for a while first? Do the powers come from the instruments themselves or are they more of a focus? They don't give you an automatic knowledge of how to play them, but he has an innate talent for music and connection to the Void. That's part of the deal with how long it had been between Virtuosos and the fact that, normally, the previous one is around to teach the next. It was chance that Anthony even went to the exhibition and was exactly the right person who had the attunement and aptitude to even have this work out in the first place. The bell is fairly straightforward - the Lyra took him somewhat longer to learn as it's more complicated, but he was still able to pick it up relatively quickly given his natural aptitudes/attunements. Their power doesn't come from their instruments, they create their instruments with their power (see backstory above for the creation of "Drake's Pipes").
- In the Tachyon episode it's mentioned that magic doesn't have reproducible results, but his seems pretty consistent; what's going on? It's because his abilities are Void effects rather than "magic". Analogy to Jazz - there's a lot of precision to be found in something that's entirely improvised. Behind the scenes: Christopher and Adam learned about music together when young and their knowledge and love of music goes back a long way - it was important to them as they built out the setting details/talked about the Void, and created this character.
- What does AA think of Nightmist and Harpy (citing the chaotic/orderly differences)? Does he ever notice that Unity's powers are actually magical? AA is not a student of "magic" and is not a teacher of anything - he's trying to learn what he can from the instruments about the Void. He might run into a magician and try to get info from them, but then quickly realizes that it operates entirely differently from what he does and so they can't teach him much. He might recognize that Unity's stuff is magic, but he's not able to tease out why and he's also not the type to even bring it up to explain it.
- AA seems like the hero most focused on supporting others (having limited abilities to deal damage himself) - is he a solo adventurer or is he reliant on a team to be properly effective? Was this the case for previous Virtuosos? He's not really a damage-dealing sort of person, but he still is focused on neutralizing threats. What he does in the card game isn't necessarily a good representation of his non-team efforts. In solo books he rarely is dealing with "fightable" issues and so deals with it in other ways.
- On several cards we see him shooting beams of some sort, what's going on? First a single 40-card game deck is incapable of showing off everything that a character as complicated as a Virtuoso of the Void is capable of. He can to pretty much anything with Void energy and so it's hard to encapsulate this mechanically. When we see these energy beams, they're not doing "energy damage" - they're not doing damage at all, most likely, but they're the outward manifestation of his music/Void power doing something in the aforementioned "threat neutralization".
- Who/what is the "Silver Shadow"? It's a Void form that he can summon to aid him in the playing of music (kind of a "clone" of himself that he conjures to play an instrument). This is separate from the "play all instruments at once" trick and doesn't drain him.
- How do his powers "Vocalize" and "Conduct" work? Vocalize represents the fact that Anthony Drake is a singer and can summon some Void energy even without using an instrument. Conduct might be using Void energy to play an instrument rather than doing so himself.
- It's been mentioned that Anthony Drake is asexual, is that true? Has he had a romantic relationship? Yes, he is an asexual, aromantic character. This wasn't written into his character from the beginning in the '70s, though. It was the case that, unlike virtually every other contemporary hero, he didn't have a character written in as a love interest - his stories just didn't really allow for it. It was a later writer that decided that this meant that he was asexual/aromantic. He has had no relationships in the comics.
- Virtuosos used to hand down instruments, if things hadn't gotten screwed up by Akash, who would have been Anthony's mentor? Virtuosos wouldn't be passing down instruments. There isn't any person who "would have been" his mentor - the "screwing up" of things that Akash did didn't disrupt some kind of destiny/lineage thing. The mentor would have taught him and helped him form his own instrument (and may have given him an instrument to use to get things kicked off).
- Since "argent" means "silver" is/was there a Aurum (Golden) Adept? No. Each Virtuoso had a color associated with them for comic book reasons. More on past Virtuosos later.
- What's the significance of the "hero" being associated with the Void opposed to the "villain" associated with Nature? Have any Virtuosos been more evil? The first bit more of a topic for next week. There has been one malicious Virtuoso - but even he stood against Akash'Bhuta to protect the world - he was just also more selfish and power-hungry; The Crimson Conductor. More on him in the discussion of other Virtuosos below.
- How is the title/role of Virtuoso passed down? Going back farther than recorded human history there has been a Virtuoso of the Void. Occasionally there's more than one around at the same time. There's frequently one training up one or two (or very rarely three) new ones. The requirement is an innate musical aptitude and innate attunement to the Void combo is exceedingly rare which limits the chance that a Virtuoso would meet more than a few candidates in their life. Prior to the gap leading up to Anthony Drake becoming one, there hadn't been a time without a Virtuoso of the Void, but more on that next week.
- His bio said that previous Virtuosos passed on their instruments, does that mean that each one creates their own instruments? Does he share that ability and/or if all instruments are destroyed is that the end of the Virtuosos? With the merging of the timelines, has the "main" Argent Adept learned of any other Virtuosos? It was mentioned that he met the Void-forms of past Virtuosos, but he doesn't meet any as people. Some more in the Future section, but in the card game timeline he's self-taught.
- In the Ra episode it was mentioned that the first powered person on Earth was a Virtuoso - is there something about angry nature spirits opposed to musicians tied to Earth specifically or could there be Virtuosos on, say, Dok'Thorath? Akash'Bhuta is unique to Earth and so the dynamic happening with Virtuosos is unique to Earth too. Different planets have different things wrong with them.
- Can we hear more about his connection to previous Virtuosos? His relationship is more with the connection to the Void that they left to him via their instruments rather than to their individual personalities/experiences.
- How did he choose the pipes as his instruments? It's funny since he's a vocalist and he chose pipes - he realized that these instruments were a means to power and so thought back to the instrument he'd played most recently: a recorder back in middle school. He's much better at these pipes than he ever was with the recorder, though.
- Did he have any musical experience or interest prior to the encounter with the Bell? He was in a series of bands prior to becoming a hero, but hadn't found the right group. He always wanted to do something with music, and eventually figured it out.
- Are there any surviving instruments from prior Virtuosos that he hasn't found? Yes.
- The Dark Conductor variant shows him with a thorny baton also wielded by the Carbon Adept, is this an actual Instrument? How did Biomancer get it? This is a good place to talk about the various Virtuosos (many of whom we see in the Toll of Destiny flashback montage and then not again until OblivAeon). The first instrument was Akpunku's Drum, owned by a woman in Africa - the Amber Accompanist. Telamon was an ancient Greek Lyra player - the Cerulean Sorcerer. Next was Xu Li-hua in Han Dynasty China - the Jade Jinx. Eydisar Ragnarsson was a Norseman - the Sallow Skald. The Italian nun Tomasina Musaragni during the Renaissance was Sister Saffron. Last we have the German Franz Vogel - the Crimson Conductor who had a baton covered in thorns, representing the darkness within him and his lust for more power. He did a dangerous thing - mixing Void power with Blood Magic. Biomancer has been around a long time and has known about the Virtuosos for a long time (ask more about him for his own episode). After fighting Biomancer and the Carbon Adept, AA gets the baton and finds it's a real "instrument", but it changes him. This isn't a comprehensive list of Virtuosos or their instruments, it's just the ones whose instruments Anthony Drake has and whom he deals with.
- Does he ever contact previous Argent Adepts for training? First off, he's the only "Argent Adept", but no he doesn't contact previous Virtuosos beyond the events already discussed.
- How does he feel about Akash'Thriya being "good"? He's initially wary, but overall pretty pleased with how things turned out. He's not interested in fighting opponents, but in removing threats and having his greatest foe being on his side is a pretty killer way to have them not be a threat.
- Do Virtuosos generally get curb-stomped immediately or is he unique in this regard? He actually does worse than general given that he's self-trained.
- Did previous Virtuosos work with a team like the Prime Wardens? There have been teams consisting of multiple Virtuosos but not typically team-ups with other heroes.
- [Sign-off referring to The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss] This is a series (currently standing at 2 novels with a third fothcoming, a novella about a side character, and a short story about another) about a character named Kvothe who is a magic-using person who also is a magician. While there's some intentional similarities, they are by no means the "same" person and the Virtuosos of the Void as a concept has nothing to do with the books. However, because of the similarities, they did a cross-promotion with Rothfuss' charity Worldbuilders to make a promo character card with Kvothe in place of Anthony Drake. You don't need to know anything about the books to understand the Argent Adept.
- Given that the Legacy line has been around for a long time (as has Haka, Bunker, or others) has a Virtuoso of the Void interacted with any other heroes? The Legacy line has been around for a shorter time than there was a gap between Virtuosos, so no previous Virtuoso interacted with a powered Parsons person. No previous Virtuoso was a character in the past of Sentinel Comics. None have met Haka (although the timelines could have allowed it since he's been around so long). Of the villains, probably only Akash'Bhuta and Biomancer interacted with them in the past.
- Anthony Drake, the "Dark Dynamics" variant, and Kvothe are all gingers, but it's hard to believe that all Virtuosos were - is that a common trend with them? They're from all over the world. The Dark Dynamics variant is still Anthony Drake, none of the other Virtuosos have any reason to look like him.
- Could there be a Virtuoso who's tone deaf? What if AA lost his musical abilities? "Tone deaf" is tough, it's theoretically possible for somebody to be naturally talented in music but still be tone deaf, but it's probably fair to say that every Virtuoso so far has had perfect pitch. It's unclear how AA could lose his musical abilities (if somebody magically did something to his mind it's likely that the Void would somehow fix it). During that period, however, he'd retain the knowledge even if he'd be temporarily unable to use it. Even if he was deafened, he'd still be able to use his abilities (look at Beethoven as an example) and probably even use the Void somehow to get around that problem (like Mr. Fixer getting around being blind).
- How long was the Multiverse without a Virtuoso? How many instruments have been destroyed? It's been a few hundred years (and it's not just a destruction of an instrument that caused the gap in Virtuosos). Many have been destroyed. Probably more than are still extant given that up until the gap there was at least one created per generation going back into prehistory.
- "Dark Dynamics" Adept has a dal segno symbol on his chest - is there significance to this (re: its use in music notation to mark where to repeat a portion of the music)? He's also clutching a rose so hard his hand bleeds - is this tied to blood magic? It's not a rose, it's the Crimson Conductor's baton and, yes, it's tied to blood magic. The symbol is the insignia that the Crimson Conductor used, although it's interesting that he's also kind of repeating the sorts of things that the Crimson Conductor did.
- The Instruments are obviously important, old, and powerful, but why aren't they "Relics"? Why was Xu's bell specifically that was used to destroy one of Voss's ships? They aren't "Relics" in the game-keyword sense because they aren't imbued with power in such a way as to pass that power on to somebody - they work that way for Virtuosos specifically, and wouldn't mean anything to anybody else. Relics also have a degree of "invulnerability" that the instruments don't really have. The bell just happened to be the one he picked, no larger significance. It's a very good thing that he didn't destroy his pipes that way - destroying the bell disrupted the connection between the bell and the Void-form of Xu, leaving it as a husk of what it once was. If he'd destroyed the pipes it would have killed him.
- How is AA able to keep all of the instruments with him and ready to use? He keeps them in the Void and summons them when he needs them.
- Are there Virtuoso instruments that the comics writers created that we just don't see in the game? Are there some that remain hidden even after the end of the Multiverse and does that affect his abilities? There are some that haven't been recovered, some have been destroyed, the end of the Multiverse has no effect on his abilities. There are some the writers made that we haven't seen yet - they'll mention some in the Future section.
- Compared to the Scholar, he doesn't seem like a mentor person (big agreement there) - but he's worked with Nightmist, helped exorcise Dark Visionary, and helped the Naturalist get a hang of his powers; are there other heroes he's helped? What did he do with Tachyon and Mr. Fixer in "Alacritous Subdominant" and "Inspiring Supertonic"? The two major things he's done to help other heroes are the Naturalist and Dark Visionary events. He's speeding Tachyon up and making Fixer's punch do more damage - pretty straightforward augmentation stuff. He makes people better at the stuff they do.
- Who's the kid on "Rhapsody of Vigor"? The first (very early, not very refined) version of Idealist.
- Why does AA transform Naturalist into other animals instead of back to a human? From a functional standpoint, the story is supposed to sound like a fable. Story-wise, he realizes that he needs to do things this way to not kill Naturalist - he speeds the process along, but he can't just undo it.
- Does AA wind up working alongside Akash'Thriya (and Naturalist)? Not really - the other two work together more, but the three of them do all go to the Nexus of the Void together. They're wary of each other, but when they do work together it works well.
- How does AA feel about Naturalist awakening/helping to evolve Akash? Apprehension at first with a chance to grow into something more.
- What's the giant egg on "Instrumental Conjuration"? It's the Nether Egg in the Realm of Discord. Laid by the Nether Fiend. We see Portal Fiends in the deck and they can open portals to move around within the RoD. The Nether Fiend is the most ancient of them (and much bigger/more powerful, so much so that it's ignored humans running around). The egg is going to hatch a being capable of opening portals between the RoD and physical world (which is bad). He can't destroy it (and even if he did it would bring down the wrath of all of the Portal Fiends on humans), but he can make it so it never hatches. He has to summon all of his instruments to do this.
- What happened to him in MMFFCC? How did the Prime Wardens find him again? He fell through the bizarre swirling thing there that was known to swallow people. This let the other Prime Wardens trace him to this pocket dimension to rescue not only him, but other people who had been lost there. All things considered this was a good things because 1. finding/helping more people and 2. if somebody's going to fall into a weird pocket dimension thing, AA is a good candidate for being able to handle it.
- Has Anthony Drake ever put out an album? A mix tape? A YouTube channel? Not really - he likely put down some backup vocals that got used at some point prior to becoming a Virtuoso, but that's all likely in his past since he's rather more busy with other stuff now. He'd probably like to be able to do more stuff now that he's a better musician, but he's just too busy.
- [Stuff about how, as somebody who likes playing D&D Bards, it's nice to see a Bard superhero and, even more, one that people actually like it when you play him in-game] What kind of music does he like? Do he and Absolute Zero or Writhe ever talk about music? Does he even have fun anymore? He likes Jazz a lot. He likes a lot of things, but by no means everything (not really a "modern pop" guy). He likes hearing stuff that he hasn't heard before - even if he ultimately decides that something isn't for him, he's still always open to hearing new music. He might not even be aware of AZ and Writhe's interest in music - their interest is likely very different from his. They like to do stuff like relax while listening to a record - processing and enjoying it - while he lives music. They're also not likely to seek out a conversation with him about it - it'd be intimidating to talk to him about it. It'd be like trying to talk to a world-class conductor about what they do or something - it's not really easy to talk about things at their level.
- Does Anthony's first name have anything to do with a certain creator's brother who sings about people reading letters to us? Yes. Christopher's brother Anthony is a professional artist and so that was an obvious go-to option.
- What is the significance to his more practical/simple costume in tactics? Yet another segue...
- If Guise has "Yeah, I'm That Guy!" in play, and then uses "I Can Do That Too!" on the Argent Adept, the Perform texts on AA's songs should also be on "Yeah, I'm That Guy!". While this is technically correct, it's unnecessary and so is not implemented in the digital version.
- If "Cedistic Dissonant" is used to destroy the instrument that allowed it to be performed, it prevents the "Accompany" part of that instrument from occurring.
- If Guise uses an instrument to activate a song, all the decisions and effects from the song belong to Guise. For example, with "Cedistic Dissonant", Guise decides which card to destroy, and he discards and draws cards.
- One-Shots are not considered or counted as "cards in play". That means "Into the Stratosphere" or "Cedistic Dissonant" cannot destroy one-shots that are currently being played.
- Spite: Agent of Gloom has new text added on both sides of his character card: "Face-down Villain Cards are Indestructible." This prevents "Cedistic Dissonant" and "Into the Stratosphere" from affecting those cards.
- You must perform the actions listed on "Arcane Cadence" in order. If there are fewer than 5 cards in the deck for Arcane Cadence to reveal, you miss out on the actions from the end of the list.
- With Dark Conductor Argent Adept's power, the actions occur in order - first, a card is played. Then, a card is put into the trash. The second card does not count as a discard.
- If Xtreme Prime Wardens Argent Adept uses his power to give another hero a card play, and that card play incapacitates Argent Adept, the other hero still gets to use a power. If the card play causes the Argent Adept to be removed from the game, the other hero does not get to use a power.
- Performs and Accompanies aren't powers
- Because Performs and Accompanies are not powers, they may be activated more than once in a single turn if some power or ability allows it. This is stated in the "Infernal Relics" rule book but is easy to overlook.
- Infinite Loops?
- Argent Adept has a wide range of abilities which interact in complex ways, some of which may seem to introduce an infinite loop. For example: The power on "Telamon's Lyra" lets you activate a Perform and Accompany text. The Accompany on "Syncopated Onslaught" says Argent Adept deals 1 target 1 sonic damage, and the perform text on "Inspiring Supertonic" says one player may use a power now. If you use "Inspiring Supertonic" on Argent Adept and he uses the power on "Telamon's Lyra" again, what's to stop you from repeating that loop over and over, defeating the villain 1 sonic damage at a time? Remember, unlike Performs and Accompanies, you can't activate the same power more than once per turn, so no infinite loop is possible.
- Prime Wardens Argent Adept has this incapacitated ability: “Redirect the next damage that would be dealt to a hero target to another target.” There is no difference if this ability is used once or multiple times before a hero target would be dealt damage. It all still happens on the next instance of damage.
- The text “look at” is changed to “reveal” on these cards: Extrasensory Awareness, Gauge, Updated Intel, and Inventive Preparation. “Reveal” activates Shinobi Assassin but “look at” does not (this will be important for certain cards in the future).
Comic Books: Argent Adept
Small note: Items that are in bullets are from the Podcasts, so their form may not make sense, or feel like they are missing a part - its probably on another tab
Spoilers May Be Ahead - SCU and Miststorm Universe Tabs may contain spoilers for future products.
As long as human cultures have existed, there has always been a Virtuoso of the Void. A master musician who holds back the tide of chaos and destruction through their connection to the primal forces of the natural world. There is only ever one Virtuoso of the Void at a time, and each of these druidic songsmiths faced down the avatar of annihilation known as Akash'Bhuta as she rose time and time again to break all order in the world.
The Virtuosos of the Void always passed on their chosen instruments. The new Virtuoso would learn their fate when handed the instrument, the artifact itself imparting the title and the knowledge that order must be preserved. When a young bartender named Anthony Drake happened across an ancient Chinese bell in a cultural arts museum, he learned more about the ways of the world, as well as his own destiny, than he ever could have imagined. He was the newest Virtuoso of the Void and should have already been training in the ways of the Void, but Akash'Bhuta had disrupted the cycle early. She, over time, learned to destroy the instruments of the Virtuosos, and she had broken the fiddle of the previous Virtuoso of the Void before it could be passed on to his successor.
Anthony Drake set out, leaving his mundane life behind him. He sought the remaining instruments of past Virtuosos in order to learn to channel his new-found power. Calling himself The Argent Adept, he fights as an agent of order and restoration against the discord sewn by all manner of vile beings.
However, Akash'Bhuta is already aware of this newest Virtuoso, and she knows that the sooner she destroys him, the sooner she will be able to break the cycle of the Virtuosos entirely, leaving the world her domain to do with as she pleases...
Previous Virtuoso's of the Void
There have been many Virtuoso's. Since the first human's learned of music and the Void learned of them, there has been a Virtuoso. Many of their names and their instruments have been lost to time, but some remain.
- The Amber Accompanist - Akpunku, a woman from Africa. Her instrument was a drum.
- The cerulean Sorcerer - Telamon, an ancient Greek Lyra player.
- The Jade Jinx - Xu Lo-hua, a woman from the Han Dynasty in China. Her instrument was a bell.
- The Sallow Skald - Eydisar Ragnarsson, a Norseman whose instrument was a horn.
- Sister Saffron - Tomasina Musaragni, an Italian Nun during the Renaissance, whose instrument was a Harp.
- The Crimson Conductor - Franz Vogel, a German conductor. Franz was the last Virtuoso before Anthony Drake.
Franz Vogel, due to the influence of Akash'Bhuta, mixed Blood Magic with his Void powers, causing him to seek out other's who could have been apprenticed as Virtuoso's and stealing their power for himself.
- He was introduced in the early '70s in the 5-issue limited series Toll of Destiny. In issue #1 he's fighting the Cult of Gloom #2 finds him fighting monsters in the Realm of Discord where he also runs into a toothy, one-eyed, tentacle monster known as Balarian (the grin is supposed to look "almost friendly, except instead it's horrifying") the hive mind aspect wasn't in place at this stage, however, he's just a big monster that AA confronts. That issue ends on a cliffhanger with AA on the ropes.
- Issue #3 is a flashback telling the story of Anthony Drake, working at bars in California and just living life. He goes to a museum exhibit showcasing a lot of old artifacts and he's drawn to this old, bronze bell from the Han dynasty of China. It's not the same kind of compulsion to touch it like the Staff of Ra had on Blake Washington Jr. - but it's still intriguing and so he reaches out to touches it (drawing a reprimand from none other than Blake Washington Jr. who's in charge of the exhibition).
- As soon as he touches it, it rings out as if struck and his mind is filled with knowledge and portents of his destiny. It's as if everybody else present is held in place as he lifts the (large and heavy) bell and runs off with it. He has learned that he (should be) the Virtuoso of the Void - a tradition that's been dormant for hundreds of years, but is necessary to protect the world from some vague, chaotic threat of the natural world. Cue flashback-within-a-flashback to tell the story of the Virtuosos of the Void, back into history and beyond into prehistory as the Virtuosos passed on training and wisdom to their successors through the ages. The remainder of the issue is a montage of him traveling around, collecting additional instruments, each one adding to his knowledge as the Virtuoso. He winds up with 5 instruments of past Virtuosos in total, although he himself is more of a singer and didn't have an instrument of his own, so he summons a set of silvery pipes from the Void itself (bringing his total complement to 6 instruments).
- The final issue of Toll of Destiny returns to the Balarian fight where he summons all of his instruments at once and plays them magically in concert to defeat it (up to that point he'd generally been using one at a time). Then the Virtuoso of the Void ongoing title picks things up from there - quickly pointing out that him playing everything at once is very draining and he can't do it often - it's his last-ditch move.
- He becomes a regular feature in Sentinel Comics - showing up for guest appearances in lots of books. He becomes a pretty major character across the brand, but he's somewhat problematic for the writers in that he always wins, which runs the risk of him being less interesting than other more vulnerable characters. The better part of the '70s passes with him mostly having one-off stories rather than ongoing arcs - lots of cool and/or crazy stuff is happening in these things, but the overall shape of any story is pretty much the same as any other.
- They remedy this in the late '70s by finally deciding to do something with the vague threat mentioned in his origin story by introducing Akash'Bhuta. Up until this point the vague threat was just assumed to be the ongoing nature of his fight with these weird monsters and whatnot rather than one specific entity. Akash'Bhuta shows up in VotV as his primordial nature spirit who already knows all of his tricks, is immune to a lot of his magic, and is just generally a tough fight. She becomes a recurring threat and they fight a bunch of times, neither one of them decisively defeating the other.
- This all builds to another major fight, but it's seemingly fitting the same trend as his past stories (it's a struggle, he buckles down, gathers his power, unleashes his power, he wins, the end) except this time once he unleashes his power, she just absorbs it and lays him out - a definitive loss for the Argent Adepts. He escapes, but utterly drained. It turns out that while the Virtuosos are necessary for defeating Akash when she turns up, she also is able to absorb the Void energy they use and so, over the course of several encounters, actually gets stronger faster due to their conflicts. More about her next week, of course.
- That brings us to FFA #10 from the early '80s. This is a big crossover with AA, the Freedom Five, and others he'd worked with over the years (name-checks to Haka and Fanatic) as well as relatively new characters like Tempest and Captain Cosmic (so giving us ballpark date ranges for their introductions). The plot involves an attack on Megalopolis by Akash'Bhuta - the setting gives the Freedom Five element, but it's still really AA's book since he's so central to the conflict - that even if he's not as strong as previous Virtuosos, he has other heroes to back him up (Teamwork!). They still almost lose - see Chrono-Ranger's episode for why they win.
- The aftermath of this fight is when the non-FF heroes involved decide to formally team up - the advent of the Prime Wardens. As a programming note, we'll get an episode on the Prime Wardens as a team after the members' individual episodes have come out. They still don't have their own title, but they do show up in each others' solo books and do a lot of cross-over work (including many FFA books that tend to be big crossover events themselves - also they mention that these tend to come in batches, that there will be several years in a row that have issues, then a gap before the next chunk of them).
- This makes him start operating as more of a Super Hero than previous general monster-stopping or being on watch for Akash'Bhuta (now that she's been defeated she's gone for quite a while). He's around for the Voss invasion, he teams up with Visionary a lot, helps out against Baron Blade, is present for the Cosmitron fight, etc. When something big is happening, he shows up.
- During the Voss fight, a notable event is that he destroys one of his instruments in order to take out one of the spaceships (he destroys the bell, see the art on "Cedistic Dissonant") - this was done by binding the bell to the ship and then when he destroyed the bell the ship suffered the same fate. This has unforeseen consequences that had lasting effects on him, but that they'll discuss later.
Variant: Originally received from the Wrath of the Cosmos preorder event for 100 copies preordered.
A team that was formed to aid a neophyte Virtuoso of the Void against Akash'Bhuta, the Prime Wardens were led by The Argent Adept in that conflict.
After a terrible loss to Akash'Bhuta - nemesis of all Virtuosos of the Void - Anthony Drake knew that he was not prepared to take on the force of Nature's Chaos. Without allies, Akash'Bhuta would end the line of Virtuosos with the death of Drake, and the world would be in great peril.
Calling out to those heroes he'd fought alongside, the Argent Adept assembled a team to face Akash'Bhuta. Each who joined him in the fight brought their own skills, abilities, and considerable powers to bear, but without the entire team, they would not have defeated the Avatar of Creation and Destruction. The Argent Adept, Captain Cosmic, Tempest, Haka, and Fanatic joined in battle, though even they would been lost if not for the momentary appearance of an unknown figure with a broad-brimmed hat and a six-shooter.
Now, that team still stands firm against threats from this world and others. Known as the Prime Wardens, the five heroes protect our world from otherworldly opponents and beings from beyond the known cosmos. However, their greatest challenge is still yet to come...
- First Appearance: Virtuoso of the Void #58
The villain known as Biomancer had crafted a twisted flesh golem in the guise of the Argent Adept. This fleshchild wielded a true instrument of the Void, a dark baton that belonged to former Virtuoso of the Void, named Franz Vogel. Upon the defeat of Biomancer, the baton was taken up by the current Virtuoso of the Void.
With the recovery of the instrument, Anthony Drake set ot learning what he could from the baton's connection to the Void. What Drake didn't know until too late was how Vogel had used his instrument - in pursuit of blood magics. It was little wonder that Biomancer had been the one to locate Vogel's baton, as it was strongly attuned to powers of blood and flesh, and amplified those powers through the Void.
As Anthony Drake mediated on the power of the baton, his connection to the Void became perverted by the residual blood magic energy of his predecessor. So, while the Argent Adept continued fighting against the forces of evil, he also began to take on some of the darkness exhibited by the Crimson Conductor.
aka: Dark Conductor Argent Adept
Variant: The Kvothe version of this card was originally announced by author Patrick Rothfuss on his blog in November 2014. The character Kvothe is originally from Rothfuss' Kingkiller Chronicles books, and Christopher has stated that Argent Adept was originally developed as a direct reference to Kvothe. "Dark Conductor" replaced that card in the Variant Pack due to Rothfuss owning the Kvothe card rights.
All sale proceeds from the card are donated to Heifer International, a charity that helps people raise themselves up out of poverty and starvation by promoting education, sustainable agriculture, and local industry all over the world.
If you wish for a copy of Kvothe, please support the charity, and do not print and play that version of the card.
Argent Adept: Dark Conductor is the replacement in the Ultimate Variant Pack. He has the same power as Kvothe.
Variant: Originally received from the OblivAeon Kickstarter.
AA isn't a big part of Vengeance since the magical/extra-planar stuff doesn't really factor into the Vengeance plot, but there is Ruin to discuss. As has been mentioned in earlier episodes, he was a denizen of the Realm of Discord who wanted was sent by Gloomweaver to go after Nightmist, but once he's in the physical plane he runs into AA and can recognize the large amount of Void energy he contains. If he were to syphon off that Void energy, he'd be strong enough to dethrone Gloomweaver. So Ruin winds up fighting Argent Adept instead, and being able to feed on Void energy, AA's normal tricks are just making him stronger. This requires him to change tactics - instead of using his Void powers directly against Ruin, he has to instead use them to utilize the elements of the physical world around him that then, in turn, works out as an attack against Ruin (this is an instance where AA's powers wind up looking more like recognizable "magic" than his powers generally do - I'm assuming this is what's going on in the art for "Scherzo of Frost and Flame"). He freezes Ruin and then shatters him. Baron Blade has been watching this while AA was distracted with Ruin - and he knows that AA is very powerful and needs to be dealt with somehow if his plot is to succeed. He sees an opportunity when AA is fatigued after taking on Ruin and just sucker punches him to knock him out (this is likely just prior to the art on "Vengeful Assault"). He's largely absent from the rest of the story. This (along with, say, Nightmist having been Regression Darted) is a big reason why Baron Blade winds up trapped in the RoD for so long at the end of the story - most of the people who could have gotten him out were rendered incapable of doing so earlier.
Next up, the Ennead fight (see the Ra and Ennead episodes) where his major contribution was to try to counter the magical protective bubble created by Isis and to allow the heroes into Egypt. This is within his abilities and it would have worked had not Shu, y'know, stabbed him through the torso (see "The Grave Beckons").
- Then there's Progeny. He arrives to try to protect the cities Progeny's attacking - he's able to hold him off single-handedly long enough for the other heroes to regroup (see "The Inevitable"), which is pretty impressive. Progeny does eventually overwhelm his shield and knocks him out (and so AA wasn't helping during that last, finally successful stand against Progeny), but he was instrumental in making the final confrontation possible in the first place.
- AA is one of the most important heroes in both the lead-up to OblivAeon and in the actual fight. First up, he goes to the Nexus of the Void (which among other things is kind of a bridge between the Void and reality) and uses his connection to the Void to awaken some potent Void creatures to come to the heroes' aid (he's there along with Naturalist and Akash'Thriya). He also reaches into the Void and summons his instruments to call forth past Virtuosos - who even after death they are still more connected to the Void (Adam does an Obi-wan voice and they have a brief discussion about the Void and the Force - they're not the same, but there are interesting similarities).
- In the OblivAeon event he helps the Idealist with a side-project, but since it's her story we'll get to hear about it in the Sentinels/Void Guard episode.
This information is from the Miststorm Universe, one of two branching timelines. Products in this timeline are: Sentinel Tactics (and expansions). Prime War (and expansions)
Tactics - AA is seeking more instruments and power. He's already gathered Vogel's Baton and learns to manage it, then he gets Ruairí O'Ceallaigh's instrument, a fiddle - he was the Chartreuse Chanteuse. He's gained enough power that he can no longer contain all of it within himself. He goes to Pinion to see if a magician can do anything to help him maybe contain this some other way so he can keep accruing more. She finds a ritual in a book that she hadn't had a use for but might work, and Nightmist isn't around to tell her otherwise, and so they use it. This creates a book, the Libretta Obscura (approximately "Dark Booklet" - a "libretto" is the text of an opera or other long vocal work so it could also be "Dark Songbook") that wasn't conjured from the Void like the instruments were, but is still a songbook of his power, from within him. This also attunes all of the instruments to the book, rather than to himself. He uses the book, to then use the instruments. He's also got to deal with Akash'Dharsha in this timeline, but more on that next week.
This information is from the Sentinel Comics Universe, one of two branching universes. Products in this timeline are: Sentinel Comics RPG.
RPG - At the end of OblivAeon, Akash'Thriya was injured to the point that she needed to absorb Void energy from the Nexus of the Void (becoming somewhat Void-like and giving her an even stronger connection to Argent Adept). She releases a part of herself, which begins growing into a giant tree in Megalopolis - known as Akash'Flora - just enormous, at least 20 stories tall with roots going throughout the city. The rest of her form is destroyed by OblivAeon and so this is all that remains of her. Where we pick things up (in the RPG starter kit), AA is communing with the tree as a kind of magical, musical groundskeeper - helping her integrate with the city and protecting her. He also manages to learn more stuff from what's left of her consciousness regarding the actual history of the Virtuosos and how in the past they train each other up rather than his self-taught methods. It's not a job for one person, but something to pass on. He learns about instruments that she's destroyed and others that she's just buried (if the associated Virtuoso is already dead she'd rather slowly absorb the Void energy that they can provide). He goes about gathering more instruments, not to necessarily gain power like in tactics, but so he can learn what he can from them and use them to find additional people with the requisite combination of attributes necessary to be a Virtuoso of the Void (you know, like a potential PC out there in RPG land).