Critical Recap: Critical Role C3E46 “Night at the Ligament Manor”
Written by Dani on February 1, 2023
Hello! Welcome to Critical Recap! I’m Dani Carr, the Critical Role Lore Keeper. Let’s dive into our recap of Critical Role Campaign 3 Episode 46 Night at the Ligament Manor!
Bells Hells enter the Ligament Manor, the home of the hag Morrigan, Fearne’s Nana Morri. She is welcoming, making drinks and telling them to call her Nana since they are Fearne’s friends. Fearne introduces everyone, telling her of their adventures. She has Nana look at Ashton’s head – when she touches the glass, Ashton sees flashes of forgotten memories.
Nana calls herself an observer, not a master of Fate but someone who can add a thread to the tangle if she chooses. There are so many tangles over the apogee solstice. The three Malleus Keys were Ira’s project and she doesn’t know much about them. She hasn’t seen Ira in years, but is intrigued to know they’ve seen him. She made the Weave Lens as a favor to him.
Nana knows little about Ruidus beyond the superstitions, but the red moon is how they’ll find the Fey Realm’s Malleus Key – it sits directly underneath the moon and is what keeps it present in this plane. Ira worked on the machine until he was fired. The Unseelie have been building their defenses and keep the machine hidden in the Shiver Keep, which resides in the Sablecast Grounds within the Sun’s Shadow realm.
Nana says they should ask Ira himself if they have more questions. The two had a flirtation once, many years ago. Nana considers herself a crafter, prompting Laudna to show her Pâté. Nana would love to add him to her collection, but she returns the rat to Laudna. Nana’s conversation switches to the torso face, as the head gets sleepy. Torso Nana explains that they take shifts, as the torso is the night owl.
Nana says that Fearne was gifted for safekeeping and that she also used to watch over Birdie. She doesn’t recall Fearne being part of a favor. Nana is a protector of things she takes a fancy to. Fearne takes the group on a tour, showing them her bedroom. It’s covered in fabric and paintings, including skin curtains over a barred window that overlooks the swamp.
Nana allows them to enter her collection room, which is a nightmarish Ariel’s Grotto containing hundreds of glass jars, figurines, eyes, and dead things. Individuals come asking for things and she takes her price, keeping it here. They gift Nana the magical bust and she shows them a favorite from her collection – the still-beating heart of the champion of the Lion Guard, the famed protectors of the midlands.
CHAOS & THE GARDEN
Ashton asks Nana to give their head a poke again, as he actually felt something when she did it the first time. The swirl of color doesn’t remind her of anything, but she does poke them again. A small galaxy cloud appears outside of Ashton’s head and vanishes. Nana doesn’t like that and won’t touch it again, but is intrigued by what happened. Ashton shows her one of his rages, hitting their Hyper Rage and gaining intense speed. Nana thinks that the mysterious magic feels both very new and very old.
Fearne takes them to the garden at the top branches of the tree to sleep for the night. The garden contains a menagerie of strange plants, including topiaries that resemble tortured people. Fearne claims that she made these dense and detailed plants that emit a soft thumping noise. They’re joined by a sun bear named Sweet Pea, who helped take care of child Fearne. She leads them to a purple vardo that is bigger on the inside, with beds and unsettling paintings.
Now that they’re alone, Imogen tells everyone about the Reilora and how Otohan and Liliana can push themselves into other people’s dreams. Maybe Imogen can do the same thing, especially if they find a way to calm and soothe her before sleep so she can control her abilities better. They discuss Ludinus Da’leth’s visit and Kadija’s theory that the flares are tethers to the Ruidusborn. Fearne says that Ludinus is not Ruidusborn but is very jealous of them.
Imogen thinks the Ruby Vanguard makes some good points and questions if the gods are really that great. Orym thinks some of them are. It all makes FCG want to learn more about the gods, to understand why the Vanguard is so opposed to them. Imogen doesn’t want one man to decide the fate of everyone. There’s no guarantee that he’s correct – would they be free? Would Predathos stop at the gods or would it devour the world?
They believe that the people making these keys are bad people. Ashton says that anyone can make a clever argument, whether or not it’s accurate. They have been shown to be cruel. Liliana has been telling Imogen to stay away. Orym has no need to debate this. He lost his husband and his father to the Vanguard. Who are any of them to decide who lives or dies? Chetney knows a bit about the Calamity and doesn’t think it’s something to aspire to. He suspects that Ludinus is up to more than just releasing Predathos.
They prepare for bed and FCG casts shared dream on Imogen and Laudna. When Imogen dreams, FCG and Laudna join her as two floating orbs. A red glow in the darkness beckons her and the three pass through its opening. They seem to be over the Fey Realm – the opening they exited was Ruidus itself. Imogen goes back to the moon and thinks of her mother. The three find themselves at the Tishtan ruins north of Yios, being pulled to Liliana.
The ruins are located in a large excavated pit, with scaffolding and platforms and structures. They see shadows, the imprints of people working within the ruins, some of whom have a red glow. There is one large tower in the center of the ruin, a three-pronged fork that curls into itself at its apex. At its base is the Malleus Key. They see Liliana, who is awake and working. Imogen touches her head and Liliana sees her. She tells Imogen that she shouldn’t be here and has to go, thrusting her out of the dream.
FCG is cast out with Imogen, but Laudna is unmoored and left behind. She tries to talk with Imogen and remind her that Laudna is there and still holding her hand. Laudna forces herself to wake up and successfully returns to the others in the Fey Realm, but with a point of exhaustion. They discuss the implications of Imogen’s newfound ability and wonder if she could spy on people or plant ideas in people’s dreams.
ADVICE FOR THE ROAD
In the morning, Nana gifts them three Harrowcall Veils – fabric that will help them remain unseen when standing still. She also gives Fearne a beautiful Gloomscale Breastplate, as well as directions to the gateway that will take them home. It resides where the brambles are thickest. She warns them to beware the Festertree blights, as they have a rusted sense of humor, and if the ground grows wanting, to pay it the iron tithe.
Nana will keep an eye on things, watching the threads. She gives them a paste to help with the time shift – before they go through the gate, they need to smear a bit on their faces. Her advice regarding the Unseelie depends on who they encounter. There are nomads among the perimeter of the Court who hunt, dangerous soldiers, ominous and eternal politicians. Be mindful and respectful. Sometimes it is safer not to fight.
Fearne talks to Nana about her parents. She feels like she barely knows them. Nana explains that the Unseelie are cruel and unrelenting, with long memories. The Calloways knew the Unseelie would come for them, so they left Fearne in the care of Nana. The Unseelie know better than to come to her manor. The Calloways stayed here as well, until they sought out their answers and Ira, stealing the crown with some help. Nana kept Fearne safe and is happy to still keep her. Fearne is going to return with her friends, but she plans to come back and retire here.
Bells Hells leave the treehouse and head for the Ruidus projection, guided by Fearne and Imogen. Fearne’s owl-like friend, Dr. Nesbitt, joins them for some of the journey. He is deeply talkative and his skills are in companionship and conversation. Fearne convinces Dr. Nesbitt to return home in order to keep him alive and so that his chatter doesn’t reveal them to enemies. They make their way into the Sun’s Shadow realm and leave the Harrowcall Fens behind.
They hear hooves behind them and attempt to hide, but FCG accidentally awakens a giant flower that unleashes steam. Three centaur archers arrive, speaking Elven, which no one speaks. FCG casts tongues to converse with them and accidentally reveals the rest of the party. The centaurs plan to take the group to the Unseelie for payment. FCG and Chetney try to explain that they are friends with Morrigan, but their intimidation doesn’t work.
The centaurs magically awaken a tree and Imogen commands them to ‘don’t’, which pauses the fight for a round. While these centaurs are not Unseelie, they are working with the Court. Bells Hells consider surrendering in order to be taken to the Court, but choose to fight instead. Ashton knocks out one of the centaurs and kills the tree, while the three witches do a combo move of scorching ray, eldritch blast, and witchbolt. Their shots braid together and knock out the other two centaurs.
Imogen’s attack activates her metamagic shard and causes a fog cloud to emanate from her mouth. The group decides to try and use this cover to their advantage. Ashton breaks the arrows of the centaurs and the group leaves them behind, heading into the Sablecast Grounds.
That is it for Episode 46 of Critical Role!
- Nana Morri’s Ligament Manor is so incredible. Make sure to check out the TikTok of Ashley’s inspiration for the house, her mother’s handmade birdhouse!
- Even Nana is unnerved by what’s going on in Ashton’s head. Intriguing.
- Imogen can enter other people’s minds during her dream! But if Imogen can do it, then so can the other Exaltants. Spying goes both ways!