Rhya is a female character. Colman, her player, is male. This is the second player to have an opposite-sex character for no immediately apparent reason (the other being Eli, who plays Ajeta in this campaign). You'd have to ask them what the reasoning behind this is, as I've no idea.
The mine shaft the Council was taking place in was surrounded by a massive Kobold camp of two thousand Kobolds, several hundred of whom were warriors. Several of the more hostile clans had moved their entire camp to the Council.
This does not bode well.
After Ven and his men leave to set up their tents, Ajeta is approached by a tall humanoid whose features are covered by a red cloak with a golden feather pattern on it and a skeletal mask resembling the skull of cattle. Rhya asked who he was in Elven, hoping to force him to ask for a translation, but Phoenix responded in perfect fluency "My name is Phoenix." Mortis and Ajeta looked at one another in slight confusion, so Phoenix stated again in Common "Hello, my name is Phoenix."
"What?" Ajeta asked in Draconic. Phoenix switched as well and said "Ah, Draconic. My name is Phoenix."
"We know what your name is!" Ajeta said, switching to Common himself.
Phoenix smiled slightly at the joke and continued. "I'm a representative of the Tenebrous Imperium," he said, "I've heard you have a vendetta with the town of Lusak."
"Yes," Ajeta said, "Why?"
"I think I may have a job for you. We're considering a strike against the town of Lusak and we'd like you to be a part of it. I'm willing to pay two thousand gold, each," Phoenix said.
"I'm a barbarian," Ajeta said, "I don't want gold."
"Ah, a shame," Phoenix said, and turned to leave.
"Hold up," Ajeta said, "I said I don't want gold, that implies I want something else."
"Alright, then," Phoenix said, "What is it you want?"
"I want the Kobolds out of this war," Ajeta said.
"Well, I can't give you that," Phoenix said, "The Kobolds are the army we intend to use for the strike."
They haggled for a bit longer, Ajeta asking if Phoenix had any magic items and Phoenix responding that he had none, though Rhya guessed he probably had plenty and simply wasn't willing to part with them. Ajeta asked why he was interested in Lusak, and Phoenix responded that they needed to get rid of the leader of the town guard, Nethmaethor. Regardless, the deal-breaker came when Ajeta said he would be involved only if it were a purely military strike, not involving the civilians. Phoenix stated rather plainly that there was no way they could make a strike on the town without harming civilians. War is not so kind as to discriminate.
In retrospect, I should've had Phoenix just lie outright about this. They wouldn't know it was intended to be a ruthless strike on both the military and anyone who happened to be within half a mile of them until the battle had already begun and their part was over (since they were intended to capture Nethmaethor at the very opening of the battle and bring him back to Phoenix, who would "persuade" him to give up some valuable military secrets).
By the time Phoenix took his leave, the Council was starting. Bidek was the leader of the Imperium Kobolds, and Ven and Vek together led the argument for peace. Ajeta represented collectively the guests of the Kobolds, who consisted solely of Ajeta and his group. Phoenix represented the Imperium.
When Bidek opened up the argument, saying that winning the war would place not only the surviving Kobolds but all of their children in a higher standard of living, Ajeta immediately responded that the Imperium would never retain its loyalties. The two argued back and forth a few moments before Phoenix stepped in.
"I find this concern for the Kobolds odd, coming from the Butcher of Lusak," he said, almost as if curious instead of confrontational.
"How about from the butcher of many?" Ajeta shot back.
The Kobolds were talking amongst themselves now, many of them unsure of where they stood. Phoenix stood at this point and said "My friends and allies, the Earth has tasted Kobold blood, and found it bitter, as it does all the blood of the innocent. Shall we allow the blood of these martyrs, of Alek and Zak, to go unavenged? Shall we allow these western savages to continue stealing your land and slaughtering your people until you are dead and gone, or shall you take this opportunity to fight back against your oppressors and become the heroes of the Imperium? Shall you allow Canis to fall before Alra's hand?! I say to you now, do this thing, take this risk, and you and your children and your children's children shall have the gratitude of the Imperium. With the Kobolds as our vanguard, the Imperium shall sweep away the races of the West, purging the Earth of their influence once and for all! Imagine a world where everywhere the Kobolds go, you will not be turned away. You will be never be hungry, never be cast out, never be hunted again! No man nor orc shall seek Kobold hides under the rule of the Drow! There can be no defeat in such an endeavor. Children of Canis, I say to you, god wills it! God wills it! Begin with these treacherous snakes who've come to deceive you into slavery to the West. Slay them first, and then on to Rabarac and the West!"
The soundtrack for this speech was Treize Khushrenada's theme from Gundam Wing. It worked rather well.
Several Kobold tribes were whipped into a frenzy and began to surge towards Ajeta, seeking to kill them, while the other Kobold clans kept their heads and moved to protect the guests of the Council. A battle broke out, and Phoenix drew his sword, slaying four of the Kobolds within seconds. Ajeta and his allies, who'd been preparing for a fight, suddenly decided that discretion was the better part of valor. They grabbed Vek, Ven, and Bidek and bolted. They dropped Bidek in the camp by his own people while Ven and Vek mounted their riding dogs and, abandoning their tents in haste, fled the camp as the battle spilled outside.
That night, they could see the smoke from the Kobold camp rising into the sky. The Imperium Kobolds had almost certainly won, which meant that the anti-Imperium clans weren't long for this world. Everything had changed.