Dammasae's Journey

Assault on the Spire Part 2

Unexpected Allies...

This adventure log is meant to serve as a summary of our last two sessions. I did my best to summarize everything that happened, but because I was trying to recall two sessions worth of events, not everything that happened will necessarily be here. The order of events below should be fairly close to accurate. If something is out of order, it was because it was not listed in the roll20 chat log, and I had to weave it in where I thought it went. If something that happened is missing, it too was not in the chat log, and I didn’t remember it, so deal with it. If you feel any of the events listed below are not how it happened, or how you remember and/or perceived it, you are wrong, see earlier statement on how to deal. Enjoy!

After their epic charge through the ranks of the red wizard forces, the party assisted Lord Deuckeglu Oocoa and the other Wearers of Purple with fighting back the red wizard forces from that area.

Once the immediate threat had been neutralized, Lord Deuckeglu Oocoa warily approached the party to ask what they were doing there, and why they were helping the Keepers of the Secret Hoard.

Anciano explained that they came to help, and that surely the battle would have been lost were it not for the party’s assistance. The Lord’s snort of derision made it pretty clear that he was not buying the story, but he was not really in a position to look a gift horse in the mouth.

He quickly explained that while the mythal around the Tower of the Talon was still intact, three individuals who appeared to be aligned with the red wizard forces had figured out a way to teleport short distances despite the powerful wards around the area preventing it.

This had allowed them to even breach the mythal, and enter the tower proper. This was of great concern because the lord feared that they were seaking a very powerful artifact contained in the tower which would grant the red wizards power enough to threaten the entire realm.

Lord Deuckeglu Oocoa gave the party an amulet which could be used to enter the mythal, and asked the party to hunt down these trespassers, and prevent them from reaching the secret room with the artifact (which he begrudgingly gave the party the location of after they made the point that it would be easier to defend if they knew where it was).

With this new knowledge, and armed with a way to enter the mythal, the party proceeded to the Tower of the Talon post-haste. What they found there however, sickened even the most battle-hardened amongst them.

As the party entered the tower, their nostrils were assaulted with the sight and stench of death. Whoever had come through here, had massacred the Purple Dragon Cult’s defenders in the most heinous and gruesome ways possible. The party noted that many of them look like they had been torn apart by animals, while others had looks of sheer terror on their faces, but otherwise seemed completely unharmed.

Following the path of destruction was quite easy, even without the help of Anciano’s army of flying eyes scouting for them. The path led them almost directly to the secret chamber, where they found the secret entrance wide open. Ztegk stealthily moved up to investigate, and peered inside just in time to see three cloaked figures lift a book off of a pedestal and disappear.

The party rushed forward to investigate, discovering that they were of course too late to stop them. Lord Deuckeglu Oocoa then appeared asking for an update, and was visibly very upset that they had gotten away. He quickly grabbed an item from nearby and touched each of the party members, explaining that it would allow them to teleport freely within the mythal. He then beseeched the party to go after the thiefs, for the sake of all the realms!

Never ones to back down from a chance to save the realms, the party traced the teleport, and teleported themselves to the exact location on the battlefield where the intruders had gone. When they arrived, they were greeted by 3 cloaked figures atop their steeds, the very leftmost (from the party’s perspective) of which raised a large greatsword and pointed it at them.

He was a mountain of a man, clad tightly in his dark robe and cloak, and surrounded by shadows. He appeared to have another battle-worn greatsword strapped to his back, in addition to the one that he was currently leveling at the party. Some bulges under his robes hinted that he was wearing other equipment beneath, bracers, boots, maybe a mask (hard to be certain), but strangely, nothing that seemed to indicate any armor…although Anciano noted that his arcane sight showed that he appeared to have many powerful magic items on his person.

The figure in the middle was tall, but slender. He wore his robe and cloak more loosely than the rest, revealing that he had black, straight hair and olive skin. A very large sword was strapped to his back also, and when he moved and his cloak parted, the glint of hundreds of metal shurikens, all arranged in a tightly knitted pattern resembling scale mail, could be seen attached to his person. The bulk under his robes betrayed that he wore some type of heavy armor, and Anciano once again noted that he was riddled with powerful magics about his items and person.

The figure on the far right stood in stark contrast to both of the other two. Though this figure too was hidden beneath a dark robe and cloak, the frame and features (though hard to discern) betrayed it to be a humanoid woman. What was most interesting about her was that she sat atop a skeletal steed, and that she didn’t appear to be wearing hardly anything for equipment. Her robe, cloak, a brooch, and a necklace with some dull gems were about all the party could discern. Anciano noted that while all of these items were magical, they appeared to be the only magical things about her, which again was in stark contrast to the brilliant radiance of magic that surrounded her companions.

Before anyone could do anything brash, the figure in the middle bid the one on the left to lower his sword, and then strode forward on his horse to address the party. He explained to them calmly that today had been a day with enough bloodshed, and that they had no quarrel with the party, and only sought to leave with their forces, ending all of these unpleasant hostilities. As he spoke, the other two figures just scanned the party, their heads and barely visible eyes taking turns staring at each party member in turn, as if trying to make sure they weren’t up to anything (or perhaps sizing them up?)

Anciano then spoke up for the party, saying that they too would rather not have to further the hostilities, and that as long as they returned what they had stolen, they were free to leave. This caused the figure on the right to sit up suddenly and yell out that they had “stolen” nothing. Her words rang with truth, but Anciano’s great intellect deduced that perhaps they only “believed” it was not stealing, but that they were indeed in possession of the relic from the tower.

He tried again, this time stating the fact that one of their party had seen them take something from the tower, and asking them again to return it to the Cult of the Purple Dragon. This caused the female figure to exclaim that they were only there to retrieve what had been taken from them, and she once again insisted that they had stolen nothing.

Again her words rang with truth, but Anciano was now intrigued at what it could be that they had taken. Lord Deuckeglu Oocoa had insisted that the relic was immensely powerful, and that the red wizards could threaten the realm if they were in possession of it…what could it be?

He decided to try a different tactic, and instead asked what it was that they had taken, he knew it was a book, but what knowledge did it contain? The female figure answered him, saying that it contained alchemical notes, and did not possess any power outside of the alchemical knowledge within. She restated that the Wearers of Purple had stolen it from them, and that they were retrieving what was theirs.

For a third time her words rang with truth, but Anciano was still not entirely convinced. He stated that he believed that the Purple Dragon Cult may have indeed stolen it from them initially, but he was not at all convinced that only alchemical notes were contained within…

The middle figure strode even closer, and Euphemia had to make handle animal checks to keep her animal companions from bolting. He again addressed the party, eloquently stating that they need not throw their lives away, and although they could stand around all day debating the particulars, he instead would like to offer the party a gift, which he described as “the thing which they were seeking”. It was a small bundle, wrapped in cloth, that he placed on the ground, before striding back to his horse.

Although his words rang with truth, and many members of the party were nodding their heads along to them because they made sense, Anciano stated that they should not be allowed to leave until the party was sure that they had retrieved the item that was taken from the tower.

As the figure attempted to remount his horse, Euphemia took Anciano’s statement that they not be allowed to leave very literally, and decided the best way to do so was to prevent the remounting of the horse, and so she urged her great triceratops Zarven to charge the unsuspecting horse, easily impaling it on its horns. At the same time, her hands became a blur as she loosed a hailstorm of arrows at the figure who had just been speaking, and who’s horse Zarven had just impaled before he could mount it.

The arrows did not seem to phase him, as he was able to avoid most of them, and the others appeared to be deflected by his armor. The now horseless figure tried to regain control of the situation, insisting that fighting was not necessary, but now the figure on the left once again raised his sword, and started chanting the words to a spell. The horseless middle figure looked at him and asked in exasperation, “Are we really going to do this now?” When the leftmost figure did not lower his sword, and did not stop chanting, the horseless middle figure said in an annoyed voice, “Oh, very well then!”

Just then the chanting finished, and faster than the blink of an eye the figure with two swords (started as leftmost), and the figure with the olive skin (started as middle), were both in different places. The party members who had been standing in the vicinity of the “gift” that the olive skinned figure had left on the ground for them, felt compelled to now look down at it.

As they did, they saw a small, circular metal ring emblazoned with a sigil depicting the five-headed dragon tiamat. Those that were not of a very high will, found themselves wracked with pain, and less able to resist such affects.

Those that were not busy staring at the sigil, were greeted by a veritable army of Kahradi Skeletal Warriors, and the dreaded Ghasts of Shenrath, all of whom seemed to appear instantly, and had them all completely surrounded (except for Lily and Anciano who were both flying).

Marmaduke, who was not affected by the Sigil, took the opportunity to reach back and firmly grasp the shaft of one of his spears, sending electricity crackling and arcing into the air. Several mighty throws later, and it was raining electric spears on the olive-skinned figure. He once again either deftly avoided them, or they were deflected off of his armor with no apparent damage.

Elaanni, having regained her composure after looking at the sigil, turned to the nearest Kahradi and attacked with all the fury she could muster (which was far less than usual, but still fierce). She was very surprised however, when her target was still standing (barely) after she attacked it with Soulfire and Winter’s Wail, her two kamas. She informed the party that these undead were far more powerful than they appeared.

Hearing this, Euphemia gave the order for her animal companions to attack, and although Zarven was too busy trying to get the impaled horse out of his eyes to participate, her other companions were eager to comply. The mighty dire tiger Thrash, the powerful dire lion Toreline, and the terrifying dire bear Amaryllis, all attacked Kahradi near them, causing considerable damage, but not destroying any of them.

In reponse to this, the olive-skinned figure set his eyes on Euphemia, and they seemed to pierce right through her, causing a feeling of absolute dread to crawl up her spine, leaving her very frightened. A second later, and a Shuriken pierced her right through the heart, leaving a large exit hole as it exploded out of her back, causing her to fall from Zarven’s back and hit the ground, lifeless.

Now the female figure, still sitting atop her skeletal horse, reached up and touched her small brooch, causing her to take a sharp breath as she did so. The entire party began to feel their heat draining from their bodies, and found themselves unable to move as quickly due to it. Anciano quickly worked to counteract this by casting haste, which caused everyone to be able to move normally again, but did nothing for the heat draining from their bodies.

Anciano then cast the spell Undeath to Death, causing 12 of the Kahradi to be destroyed. It was then that Anciano learned that his Death Ward had been unknowingly stripped from him, as bursts of negative energy erupted from the undead he killed, striking him, and almost killing him outright.

While this was happening, Elaanni drew upon her years of martial training to still her soul. An instant later, she attacked with unparalleled fury, her entire body performing an intricate dance as her kamas sliced one of the Kahradi again and again, sending bright flashes of fire, bursts of cold, arcing electricity, and claps of thunder with each hit. When she had finished, only a smoking pile of bones remained. She took a moment to steady herself and breath, as she appeared to have been heavily hurt by negative energy, much like Anciano was only a moment earlier.

Zafire having now buffed herself, unleashed crackling, biting lightning into the nearest Ghast of Shenrath, which arced to other targets, appearing to hit something like 20 of them. It was readily apparent by the smell, sight, and screeches that she caused definite damage, although none of the ghasts go down from the attack.

Recognizing the threat that the olive-skinned figure represented, having just killed Euphemia so easily, Anciano decided he would take care of him. He cast Time Stop, and then placed a bag of exploding fire seeds at the feet of the olive-skinned figure, and spoke the word to activate them immediately once time returned to normal.

This caused a spectacular series of explosions, but what was even more spectacular, was the acrobatic display that the olive-skinned figure put on the instant they exploded. Moving with a preternatural speed, he appeared to avoid many of the explosions, and come out of it with little visible damage.

Lily then teleported herself in close proximity to the female figure, with Norendithas choosing to come along also. Upon arriving, Norendithas attacked with fury, but although his attacks hit, they don’t appear to cause damage. There’s a very disturbing sound of bone crunching and breaking with each hit, but there is no blood, and perhaps more disturbingly, the figure didn’t seem to hardly even react to it.

As Lily drew herself back to retreat, the female figure’s finger flashed out as quick as lightning, and touched Norendithas on his forehead, seeming to go right through his helm as if it wasn’t there. An instant later, Norendithas crumpled to the ground dead.

A collective gasp was heard in the Mindlink as the party saw their mightiest warrior fall so easily, and a second later the entire party swore that they could hear soft female laughter in their heads…

Zindelo, who had been concentrating his efforts on moving his allies around where they needed to go, saw that he needed to act. He quickly used the resources available to him to teleport himself to Noren’s side, and then teleport them both to a distance that Lily had just determined was outside of the range of whatever was siphoning their heat away.

Gerishel then unleashed his own version of Time Stop, one that also affected his allies. Anciano, having seen how easily she had dealt with Norendithas, and knowing that some of his protections were gone, spent the time renewing some of his defenses, making some wishes, and placing a second bag of exploding fire seeds in the lap (he surmised that given that she was sitting, it would be much harder for her to avoid the explosions like the olive-skinned figure had, if he placed the bag in the lap) of the female figure. When time returned to normal, he said the word to immediately trigger the fire seeds, causing another series of violent explosions.

Meanwhile, Zindelo took this opportunity to cast revivify on Norendithas, bringing him back to his body immediately, before a more permanent death set in, which would have required more time and resources to bring him back from.

After the explosions stopped, and after the smoke cleared, the party was greeted by the sight of the female figure standing calmly with her hands clasped in front of her, on the fractured bones of her skeletal steed, and the almost completely annihilated remains of Ztegk’s body. Several party members noticed an ornate dagger sticking out of the back of the female figure, which she calmly reached back, plucked out, and let drop to the ground. It became apparent that Ztegk had likely attacked just before the fire seeds had gone off, and due to his stealthy nature, Anciano simply had not seen him crouched on the skeletal steed behind her.

Marmaduke heard the explosions, but he had no time to look, as he once again sent a rain of spears at the olive-skinned figure. This time his efforts were rewarded, as two of the spears actually did find their mark, and the olive-skinned figure let out a low, guttural growl as he ripped them out.

Now Cairon, not realizing that his own defenses against negative energy had also been removed, unleashed a cone of energy at the same group of ghasts that Zafire had hit earlier. He too caused much damage, and although many of them looked nearly destroyed, still none of them were. The backlash of negative energy that Cairon received would have killed him, had his teleport contingency not gone off the instant he was about to die. He was not seen for the rest of the battle.

Elaanni again attacked one of the Kahradi, and again managed to destroy one. This drew the attention of a pack of ghasts which where waiting nearby though, which rushed her, and because there were so many, she was scant able to protect herself from their gnawing maws. She summoned all of her willpower, and performed an extreme act of tumbling and evasion, which allowed her to barely escape from the pile of ghasts. She stumbled, barely upright and bleeding everywhere, as quickly as she could towards Gerishel, the closest ally she could see.

Meanwhile, Zafire having had enough of the large group of ghasts who just won’t seem to die, causes an earth shaking boom of thunder as lightning erupts from her hands and does it’s own version of the spell “Undeath to Death”, albeit much more spectacularly. Again, she received no backlash of negative energy for her actions, as electricity crackled from her to the ground around her.

Tragically for her though, this impressive display drew the attention of another group of ghasts who were biding their time nearby, which rushed her in the same way they did Elaanni. Unlike Elaanni, Zafire is unable to escape, and the ghasts tear her apart before the party’s eyes.

There’s no collective gasp this time, only an overwhelming feeling of despair, as the party witnesses yet another mighty member of their group fall. Although they can’t be 100% sure, a couple members of the party swear that they saw almost invisible tendrils of some kind of energy flowing out of the bodies of their fallen comrades, and into three of the dull gems on the necklace of the female figure. Did those gems begin to glow even?….

Suddenly, the sound of tumbling bones and bodies was heard, as the fallen pieces and parts of the Kahradi Skeletal Warriors, Ghasts of Shenrath, and other dead bodies in the area from the earlier battle, were being pulled by some force into two fastly growing grisly piles of death.

Gerishel beseeched all party members to converge on his position if they wished to live. He quickly explained that he is now sure he knows who the olive-skinned figure is, and that he is a powerful vampire lord that the party is not currently equipped to deal with. Gerishel lets them all know that they don’t have to come with him, but if they stay, only death, or something much worse, awaits them.

No sooner had he said this, then Euphemia’s body began to stir. Her head lifted up and looked in the direction of Gerishel. She sneered at him, her tiny mouth revealing an even tinier set of fangs.

Before they could get away, the Kahradi attack one more time, facing off against all of Euphemia’s animal companions. The animals survived the attack, but all of them, even the mighty triceratops, found themselves very near death, and ready to outright flee now that their master was…something else.

The vampire lord formerly known as the olive-skinned figure, yelled out at the top of his voice, “Trying to run are you Gerishel? No no no… That simply won’t do!
YOU AND I HAVE MUCH YET TO DO
I WILL HUNT YOU DOWN AND MAKE YOU AND YOUR FRIENDS BEG FOR DEATH
BUT IT WILL NEVER COME
I’ve taken one token already today, I look forward to many more…
Let there NEVER BE A WAKING MOMENT IN WHICH ANY OF YOU FEEL TRULY SAFE.”

As the vampire lord finished this last statement, the party members all felt terror in their souls (even though most of them believed themselves to be immune to such effects), and were only too happy to make their way to Gerishel’s position in any way possible, and follow him to his diety’s home plane of Arvandor.

The session ended with the party arriving on the plane of Arvandor, along with some tag alongs…

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