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Narrator
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A dwarf headed into the chapel before them. The chapel had two main doors on the front which lead the group into a long vestibule. On the walls hung many tapestries – primarily of blue,
gold, and white – depicting a long-haired man with a gentle expression performing various miracles. Clearly it was Lothian in the depictions.

With no one to greet them in the vestibule, everyone proceed through one of the two sets of heavy wooden doors. Together they stepped into a large sanctuary which had three rows of wooden pews stretching toward the front of the church.

At the western end of the sanctuary, wooden steps gave way to the platform which was raised about the rest of the room. In the middle of the platform stood a large gilded altar. Two small alcoves on either side of the church – one pair on the dais flanking the altar and one
pair in the lower part of the sanctuary opposite the steps – each held 4-foot-high marble statues of saintly figures.

A huge relief of Lothian crucified on an ankh dominated the wall behind the altar. The relief was flanked by two small, innocuous doors, likely leading into back rooms for the priests and storage.

The dwarf who preceded them inside had his hands steepled, head bowed, eyes closed, and was praying in dwarven seated near the back of the church in one pew.

A sprightly halfling approached to greet them warmly.

“Greetings! My name is Brother Feldon. How may I serve you today?”

[Private to GM: He explains that he is an acolyte here; Brother Heth Neferul, the pastor, is not present. Brother Feldon does whatever he can to politely get the PCs to leave.

Feldon is no cleric. He’s a rogue who works for Brother Heth. His job is to make it look as though this is an actual, functioning chapel, while Brother Heth goes about his real business: serving the Pactlords. Allow PCs familiar with bone Quaan rings to notice Feldon’s (Spot check, DC 18). That’s most likely a dead giveaway that “Brother Feldon” is not what he claims to be. If attacked or accused (to the point where there’s no more use pretending), he runs to the belfry.]

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Vogh
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Greetings brother felden. I was wondering if you could help me I would like to see your balconies because I heard that they have fabulous views of the Gorge  Vogh asked the priest.

Felton said, “Oh, how true! how true! Unfortunately, as you could see from outside, our bells are not in the tower at the moment because the floor is unsafe and we are going to have it worked on. If you went up there I couldn’t guarantee your safety. You could easily fall right through the floor! We would love to have you back once the floor is repaired and indeed the views are breathtaking.”

Thank you so much for your concern brother felden we wouldn’t want any accidents would we? It is a good thing that we are schooled in the arcane arts and are capable of levitation in case the floor were too break apart. If there is something that we must sign before going up there I would readily sign it so that you are not held liable for anything that may happen. My friends here are from out of town and are only here for a short while and I would love to show them your balconies. As you said they are the most breathtaking views.

Feldon screwed up his face in confusion. “Miss, forgive me, I don’t understand. If you have the arcane power to levitate yourself, then couldn’t you simply levitate outside up as high was you wanted to go?”

Vogh smiled, well of course we could do that but as you know many spells have a limited time frame for when they work and we couldn’t sit in marvel at the wonder that is the view from your balconies, we have checked with other places and it is said that yours are the best view.

Feldon: “Oh. Ok. Well, that makes sense. To be safe, are you okay going up one at a time? Or, you could levitate up there from outside and enter, then remain inside the bell tower?”

I think going up one at a time would be just fine. I wouldnt want to levitate up and lose the ability if something were to happen with the floor.

“Ok, then who is going first? I will escort you up to the fourth floor, then you can activate your magics to ascend to the bell tower above.” Feldon said.

Vogh looked at him, oh I guess I can lead the way right behind you.

As they move Vogh is going to be looking for signs of life with her mind. Julia will be casting detect evil and Deacon detect magic.

Vogh reached out with her mind and cleary senses the halfling and the praying dwarf.

Then she extended her senses beyond this room to the floors above.  She sensed a half orc, 5 humans, and a childlike consciousness she didn’t quite understand.  Then Vogh got concerned as she felt the presence of a basilisk, a dark naga, and a bugbear higher up…

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Vogh
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When Vogh caught sight of the ring on the hand of this priest she said something quickly to the others in their mind.  The Quaan is here this one has a ring and I sense others above.  Don’t make a scene yet but once we get to the next room we need to subdue this one.

Vogh followed behind the priest into the next room.

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Narrator
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The northern corner of this large, L-shaped room holds an ornate wooden cabinet sitting atop a nicely carved wooden table. The southern part of the room is a tidy but cramped storage area for all manner of things. A number of large wooden trestle tables stand piled high with bales of cloth, stacks of dishes, candles, incense, a small tin oil drum, tools, clothing, and more. On the southwestern wall hang more tools and clothing. A wheelbarrow sits in the western corner of the room.

Feldon steps inside and begins leading the group across the tidy, but full room to a far door

Vogh follows as she said she would and the others come behind her.

Feldon turns to address the group about in the middle of the room.  “You are no fools. Neither are we. We know why you’re here. If you leave now, your friend will be returned to you this very night safe and sound, for a small price… If you never again enter the Banewarrens, we will never have need to cross paths again…”

Vogh was ready for this and as the Halfling turned to face them and offered what he did, she only said, You will all pay for what you have done. Trying to take control of the Banewarrens is not something that will go unpunished.  With that, she pulls her blade.

Feldon: “Miss Vogh, this is not a wise course of action. You are on OUR ground here. I know you have come only for your friend. The Banewarrens is of no interest to you. Let the Inverted Pyramid or the Church worry after these things. We will bring Talin to you this very moment if you will only leave now… We have no desire to kill you or your friends. We have need of our resources for other circumstances.”

Vogh responded back by saying, Both those entities have given us the mission to make sure the Banewarrens are sealed forever.

Feldon: “But why is that your problem? Why endanger your friends and put Talin’s life at risk for these people?”

Vogh: I have done no such thing, you and your members have put Talin’s life in danger and you will pay for it with your very life. If you turn yourself into us now, perhaps you can save yourself.

Feldon: “You understand there is a dagger at his very throat at this moment, and if you attack, you’ve forfeited his life?”

Vogh: You do understand that we have very powerful friends, and a simple death is not something that will deter my friends and I from stopping you.

Feldon: “Last chance miss Vogh, what can we do to get you, and your powerful friends, to leave this place and stop meddling in our affairs?”

Bharash was trying to be patient but this halfling in front of him was getting pretty cocky with his words so he took a 5ft step towards the Halfling and slashes with his Rhoka’s.

Bharash: 20:42, Today: Bharash rolled 25,11,25,15,22,13 using 1d20+13,1d8+8,1d20+13,1d8+8,1d20+8,1d8+8. Attack and Damage.

(GM): Bharash lands 2 solid hits and felt the final one connect with an upraised arm but instead of opening a wound the halfling’s skin felt much harder than it should.

20:45, Today: Julia Graymantle rolled 4 using 1d20+3. Roll Initiative.
20:45, Today: Deacon Havenhold rolled 22 using 1d20+9. Roll Initiative.
20:44, Today: Vogh rolled 10 using 1d20+7. Roll Initiative.

Belie: rolling 1d20+8(3)+8= 11
Avach: rolling 1d20+2(6)+2= 8

Deacon begins to cast haste to give everyone better alacrity in the battle.
Active Spells: Detect magic 8/mins, Detect evil 80/mins, Haste 8 rounds
Feldon’s armor, mace and a necklace are all magical

Feldon screams out, “Attack!” as he tumbles back away from the brute

(GM): Just then, a half orc barrels through the door on the left (as we look at the map) and the dwarf that was praying opens the door behind Avach and swings at him 1 hit on Avach for 19 damage.

Belie tumbles to the other side of the half orc and misses… rolled a 4…

Vogh will sing her song and move towards the halfling.

Avach urns and slashes at the mean dwarf rolling 1d20+14(17)+14= 31, rolling 1d20+9(10)+9= 19 landing 1 hit rolling 1d10+8(4)+8= 12, rolling 1d6(1)= 1, 13 dmg

(GM): Four men who look very similar, and all 4 wielding double bladed swords rush from another room and attack. rolling 1d20(17)= 17, one of them tumbles past vogh to get at bharash.  Two slices manage to get past Vogh’s and Bharash’s defenses for 17 damage each.

Julia will cast protection from evil communal 1/min ea.
Active Spells: Detect magic 8/mins, Detect evil 80/mins, Haste 7 rounds, Protection from evil communal 10 rounds.

Round 2
(GM): The dwarf’s turn as she attacks Avach twice but misses.

Deacon will attack the orc with his staff 22:13, Today: Deacon Havenhold rolled 20,14 using 1d20+10,1d8+6. Attack and Damage.

Bharash now with multiple targets tries to take out one of the quadruplets. His slices are so severe that the man drops before him in a pool of blood.
22:16, Today: Bharash rolled 25,17 using 1d20+13,1d8+13.
22:16, Today: Bharash rolled 16,17 using 1d20+13,1d8+13.
22:16, Today: Bharash rolled 38,20 using 1d20+18,1d8+13. crit check.
22:16, Today: Bharash rolled 36,18 using 1d20+18,1d8+13.
22:16, Today: Bharash rolled 33,18 using 1d20+18,1d8+13. Attack and Damage

Feldon tumbles to the other side of Vogh to flank and then attacks. rolled a 15 to hit
rolling 1d8(3)= 3, rolling 3d6(4+5+3)= 12, 15 total

He tumbled past her and found a weak spot in a kidney as she tried to fend of 3 attackers…

The orc rages as he focuses on Deacon who attacked him. rolling 1d20+6(14)= 20
His great axe slams into Deacon defeating his protection. rolling 1d12+8(8)= 16

Orc has half plate armor he has a movement of 80 feet… sheesh, barbarian + special boots…

Belie is stabbing like a mad man, but simply cannot find an opening in the big brute’s armor Belie rolled 5,7,6 using 1d20,1d20,1d20 ((5,7,6))

Vogh will attack the halfling as he stung her some with his attack.
22:33, Today: Vogh rolled 26,21 using 1d20+14,1d8+19.
22:33, Today: Vogh rolled 24,21 using 1d20+19,1d8+19.
22:33, Today: Vogh rolled 34,26 using 1d20+19,1d8+19. Attack and Damage.

Avach attacks the dwarf again, rolling 1d20(14)= 14, rolling 1d20(17)= 17, rolling 1d10+8(3)+8= 11, rolling 1d10+8(4)+8= 12, rolling 2d6(6+6)= 12

The triplets attack Vogh and Bharash, but only manage to hit Bharash once. rolling 2d20(11+8)= 19, rolling 2d20(11+6)= 17, rolling 2d20(1+16)= 17, rolling 1d8+1(2)+1= 3

Julia seeing her friends get quite injured decides to channel her healing energies their way. Julia Graymantle rolled 30 using 9d6. channel.

Active Spells: Detect magic 8/mins, Detect evil 80/mins, Haste 6 rounds, Protection from evil communal 9 rounds.

(GM): The dwarf takes 5 foot step back and drinks potion.

Deacon goes full defense

Bharash moves to better position himself with Vogh and then slashes at one of the trio.  His blades dice up another leaving just twins.
22:49, Today: Bharash rolled 23,14 using 1d20+19,1d8+13.
22:49, Today: Bharash rolled 33,21 using 1d20+19,1d8+13.
22:47, Today: Bharash rolled 26,16 using 1d20+13,1d8+13.

The orc attacks Belie but misses with both attacks.
rolling 2d20(2+12)= 14

Belie attacks the orc back rolling 3d20(9+1+5)= 15 9+12+5+1, rolling 1d6+4+5(2)+4+5= 11

Avach steps and attacks the dwarf once more.  rolling 2d20(14+10)= 24, rolling 1d10+8(4)+8= 12, rolling 1d6(4)= 4

Vogh now turns her attention to one of the twins and attacks and kills him.
22:58, Today: Vogh rolled 30,27 using 1d20+19,1d8+19.
22:58, Today: Vogh rolled 22,20 using 1d20+19,1d8+19.
22:57, Today: Vogh rolled 30,26 using 1d20+14,1d8+19.

The dwarf takes the withdraw action

Deacon moves while doing so chants for a spell and shoots a scorching ray at the dwarf which kills her.
23:02, Today: Deacon Havenhold rolled 15,28 using d20+13,8d6.

Julia holds her action.

Active Spells: Detect magic 8/mins, Detect evil 80/mins, Haste 5 rounds, Protection from evil communal 8 rounds.

Bharash turns the next guy into confetti
23:04, Today: Bharash rolled 31,17 using 1d20+14,1d8+13.
23:04, Today: Bharash rolled 18,15 using 1d20+14,1d8+13.
23:04, Today: Bharash rolled 22,21 using 1d20+19,1d8+13.
23:04, Today: Bharash rolled 31,19 using 1d20+19,1d8+13. crit check.
23:04, Today: Bharash rolled 37,14 using 1d20+19,1d8+13.

The orc ran past Belie and up the stairs.
Belie’s AoO: rolling 1d20(12)= 12, rolling 1d6+9(2)+9= 11

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Vogh
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With their bluffs still fresh Vogh urged the others to continue up the stairwell.

They were halted and could give chase to the orc easily enough.

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Narrator
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OOC: I need you to post a marching order as the spiral staircase will only allow you to go up single file. In an effort not to slow you down, I posted spoiler text below.

Don’t read it [spoiler text] until you decide the marching order… 😀


Spoiler text: (Highlight or hover over the text to view)
The group quickly collected themselves and started after the orc up the spiral staircase. As the first person topped the stairs to the second level they immediately saw a massive reptilian creature with eight legs and armored ridges protruding from its heavily scaled body. Its eyes were glowing like two malignant, green lamps and looking into them was deadly…

Roll DC 21 Fortitude save or be turned to stone.

OOC: It’s a basilisk.


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Vogh
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Before the group heads up, Vogh asks Julia to cast prayer on them for added protection.  Then Vogh heads up the stairs first followed by Bharash, Belie, Deacon, Julia, Avach.  She told the others don’t to look at the basilisk for it can turn you to stone.

As Vogh reaches the next level up she sees the basilisk that she sensed from below.  She didn’t expect it to be where it was though and she looked at it squarely.  Thankfully though, between the prayer and protection from evil spells protecting her, she was able to fight the power of petrification.

Don’t look at she called to their minds again.

13:04, Today: Vogh rolled 22 using 1d20+11.

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Narrator
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I effed up again. You don’t ascend the stairs and immediately face the basilisk. Instead you come up into a room with four doors.

Vogh felt the presence of a monster, and several other sentient beings above. She also sensed a new presence, that of a clearly frightened man.

Ascending the stair led Vogh into a room which had four doors. The stair continued up and the telepathic bard could sense the basilisk on the next floor up. Her mind searched out the rooms immediately around her and couldn’t feel any other minds in them.

Room #8


Spoiler text: (Highlight or hover over the text to view)
This appears to be a very tidy bedchamber. You see a bed, a small bureau, a table covered with tools and carved stones, a few chairs, and a round rug with an anvil and hammer symbol woven into it.


Room #9


Spoiler text: (Highlight or hover over the text to view)
Crates, sacks, barrels, and other containers fill this storage room. All the listed items are mundane supplies, including some food as well.


Room #10


Spoiler text: (Highlight or hover over the text to view)
Four cots and a wooden ambry furnish this room, along with a long table covered with books and holding a pair of lanterns. The books here are all about combat techniques and physical training. The ambry holds clothes and personal items.


Room #11


Spoiler text: (Highlight or hover over the text to view)
This maelstrom of a room might be a bedchamber, but if it is, the person who lives here is probably disturbed. Clothes, broken weapons, tools, food, shoes, rags, blankets, and other things cover a bed, a table, and what are probably a couple of chairs. A target hanging on the wall is full of knives. The place reeks of urine. A character Searching this room (DC 23) can find a gold ring worth 50 gp amid the clutter.


Room #12


Spoiler text: (Highlight or hover over the text to view)
This large area on the third floor looks relatively empty, except for the angry basilisk staring right at Vogh. A suit of full plate armor stands in the northeast corner, and on the floor lies a large rectangular rug of blue and white.


Room #14


Spoiler text: (Highlight or hover over the text to view)
A large room was empty save a few more boxes of mundane supplies.


I can just delete my previous post and yours and move them to after this action is resolved. OR, if you decide not to look into any of the rooms, then I can just move this into my previous post.

I’ve revealed rooms 7-14, Second and Third floor on Roll20

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Vogh
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Still relatively fresh after the burst of healing from Julia, Vogh tells the others that a basilisk is in the room above. If you are going to join in the battle you will need to close your eyes for its very gaze can turn you to stone.

With that Vogh began to go up the spiral staircase she steeled herself in anticipation of the coming battle concentrating on not looking directly at the eyes of the beast.  With the last two rungs of the stairwell left, Vogh bounded up them and into the room with her blade out and ready to defend against an attack.  To her surprise, Bharash likewise came rushing into the room right behind her his blades flashing back and forth as he launched himself wildly at the basilisk.  One, two, and three slices of his blade had opened great slices across the shoulders of the beast as Bharash looked like he tried to take the things head off its shoulders.

Vogh came right behind him then and cut the beast thrice herself.  Blood sprayed about the room, but this thing seemed otherworldly in its strength and managed to fight back as it slashed and bit at Bharash.  The dragon warrior took the attack, but it seemed to wound him greatly as his blood mixed with the basilisks about the room and on the floor.

Bharash was forced to take a step back.  He recalled a potion from his back and drank it down fearing the next attack may well kill him if he didn’t heal up some.  Vogh now stood toe to toe with it.  Vogh again struck the beast three more times even as the beast clawed at her scoring a decent wound on her leg with one of its claws.

Bharash saw the beast claw Vogh and came forward once more and finished off the beast with a final flurry of strikes.

Julia had been watching the battle below and with the beast now down she came forward and unleashed a healing channel that fulled closed the wounds on Vogh and many of the ones on Bharash as well.  The others came up into the room then to look at this beast.  It was some abyssal creature for sure Deacon said to the others as he looked it over.  Vogh concurred while pulling out a few vials from her pack.  She filled them up with the some of the creature’s blood knowing that the blood was capable of restoring a petrified person to flesh once more.

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Narrator
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THeir spells were beginning to wear off at this point so Vogh cast haste on the party just as Deacon had earlier and they were once more ready to move up the stairwell.  When they got to the next floor, Vogh knew that someone was in the room next to them.  Belie can you check the door for traps and if it is locked, Vogh asked her friend.

After unlocking the door and opening it, Vogh immediately recognizes the person in there as Vesto, the assistant to Ishara Jare the loremaster who aided them in learning more about the Banewarrens. Vesto is clearly very happy to see her as his eyes open wide in recognition.

Vesto, what are you doing in here? Vogh asked.
Vesto replied after being ungagged, “Oh my word I’m happy to see you Miss Vogh. These monsters captured me and lady Ishara. They stuck us both into some strange contraption on the upper level. It forced us to sleep then they extracted information from our minds. They wanted to know all we did about the Banewarrens.”

Ishara? Where is she now, do you know? She isn’t here.  Vogh further asked.

Vesto replied, “I don’t ma’am. I have not seen her since we were abducted.”

Are you able to stand and walk? Talin is upstairs and we are going to free him.

“I think so. If you’ll cut these bindings. My body was not harmed, but my head feels like a mess of goo, like someone squished my brain.”

Vogh touches Vesto, she is feeling a little weird that he is here. It seemed odd to her.
Vesto remember why I came to you the first visit?

“Yes. The strange prophecy… Um… About the rune heroes of old. Yes?”

That is correct, Do you remember what Avach told Ishara?

“I’m sorry Vogh. I don’t believe Avach, who is that?, has ever met with myself or Ishara.”

Okay Vesto, I think perhaps you should leave. We are about to get into a fight above and I don’t want you to get hurt or worse

“Ok. Ok. Just promise me you’ll bring Ishara back safe…?”

I will do my best for sure!
Vogh escorts Vesto out of the church making sure he was okay then her and the others return back up the stairs. While we headed to the bottom floor Deacon and Belie check the bodies quickly picking over everything and throw it all into bottomless backpacks.  As they went up, Vogh decided to check all the room to make sure they didn’t miss anything along the way.

When they got the room with the basilisk again, Vogh tells the others to move and be ready.
If she sees someone come down the stairs she casts Haste.  Deacon is going to cast grease at the bottom 2 steps and on the floor in front.

You all see the half-orc look down at you from the stairs and tosses something down the area
it makes it only partway down the stairs and bursts open, starting to burn an oily liquid which drips down the stairs and burns.

Deacon begins to cast a spell and 2 scorching rays of fire burst from his hands.  The first ray hits the stairs to no effect but the second hit his target and singes the half-orc for 13 fire damage.

The half-orc curses in his language and stepped down the stairs to chuck another bag again he doesn’t’ make it all the way around the rungs but it adds to the fire on the stair.

With two fires burning now on the stairs, Bharash who has yet to show his breath weapon to the others decides this is the time.  He opens his maw and unleashes a cold blast of energy.  As it hits the fire it manages to extinguish the flames.

Next, the orc tosses down a bag that splatters open and starts to hiss on the metal.

Instead of advancing, Vogh and the others decide to wait out the orc but then suddenly Vogh senses the mind-flayer moving toward them.

The mindflayer unleashes a mindblast at Deacon, Julie, Bharash, and Avach.  Bharash, unfortunately, isn’t able to make the save and just stands there stunned.  The companions under Vogh’s guidance still don’t advance and then another blast comes down the stairs at Vogh and Belie.  This time Belie is suddenly stunned as well.

The orc throws down another bag of alchemist fire lighting the stairs and floor on fire once more.

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Narrator
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Vogh sees that the fire is probably going to burn the building down and trying to get to the enemy above is becoming more and more fruitless she calls to those not stunned to help bring Bharash and Belie downstairs and to the exit.  Avach can you go notify the Inverted Pyramid that we have found where the Pactlords have been hiding here in Ptolus.  Deacon can you go tell the city watch about the fire and that there are criminals inside who have kidnapped a friend to Castle Shard?  Julia, can you go tell the church, we need them here as well.  One of their own, High Priest Heth is clearly serving the Pactlords.  I will stay here with Bharash, and Belie till they can move again and make sure no one gets out.  Vogh knew Talin was up there but there was no way she could help him right now.

WIth the smoke billowing out of the chapel, someone clearly notified the fire brigade for they showed up and began to put out the fires.  That was then when Vogh couldn’t sense the mindflayer or others in the belfry anymore.  She could sense Talin still so she decided to dare it and dashed inside the burning chapel and to the top to rescue Talin.  It wasn’t easy and she was coughing from the smoke but she finally reached the top and freed Talin from some weird contraption.

The top level of this tall church tower measures 60 feet long by 40 feet wide. A staircase on the eastern side of the room spirals downward. On both the longer walls, a 40-foot-wide open balcony looks out over the city. Rather than the expected church bell, this belfry houses two large devices of arcane and devious nature. One, 5 feet tall and almost that wide, surrounds what appears to be an operating table fitted with iron manacles. Hanging down from the device are fiendish-looking attachments fitted to someone lying on the table. The other device is similar in size to the first and looks like an oven—a large steel contraption surrounding a rounded section fitted with a hinged door.

When Vogh unhooks him, he wakes up and starts to cry upon seeing her.  Vogh can see his equipment is on a table across the way.  It is okay Talin I have you now! Let’s get your things and get you out of here. They were about to jump off the balcony and use there feather fall when Vogh looks back at the view she recognized from the Scrying image, she noticed a strange distortion in the air just over the southeastern edge of the ledge.
Talin do you know what that is?

He shook his head. “I’ve been locked in that awful machine having them attack my mind for gods know how long”

Vogh sees the distortion, but not knowing what it is yet she decides to get Talin to safety.
Now outside Vogh waits for the fire to be put out. Vogh is going to tell whoever is there from the church or IP about the items upstairs and that she wants them destroyed!  She will also describe the distortion as well.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
A large group of people had gathered around the Church. Several Order of the Dawn guards had shown up with a couple clerics of the Lothian Church. City Watch members spoke to Vogh and the others about what had happened while a couple guards went in with members of the Fire Brigade to put out the flames before they spread. The Watch set about roping off the church and locking the doors as there was going to be an investigation for sure.

No member of the Inverted Pyramid was reachable as the group had always simply left messages for Jevicca at the Ministrel. Avach assured them he would inform his group about the situation and check in with them back at the Inn.

Later that day, the 25th of Sun, two couriers arrived within minutes of each other. One was a formal request from Sister Mara von Witten to meet her, with Brother Fabitor Thisk, at the Grand Cathedral that very day. The second was predictably from Jevicca Norr notifying them she would be coming to the Minstrel that evening to debrief them.

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Vogh
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Vogh and Talin talked long about what he had remembered about the incident in the belfry.  She asked many questions to jog his memory.  They both sat in their room on the bed talking. when the two messages came in for the meetings.  It was about midday now so Vogh asked if he was okay to go talk to the church now while it was all fresh.  When he agreed Vogh and Talin grabbed the others and headed to get Brother Fabitor and head to the Grand Cathedral.

When they arrived Vogh said they were there to see Sister Mara von Witten and that it was urgent.

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Sister Mara von Witten
———————————————————–
“By the Spire and by Lothian’s Robes I am so sorry for what happened!” The lady stood from her chair upon the groups entrance and moved quickly over to Vogh to embrace her.

“We had no idea of Brother… No, he’s no longer a brother! Of Heth’s involvement with these beasts. The church is in debt to you wonderful citizens for sussing out his crimes. As you well know, he has disappeared but agents of the Church are seeking him out to bring him to justice. If he dies by your hand, you will be richly rewarded for ending such an evil man!”

Sister Mara stopped to catch her breath. The older lady was clearly disheveled by the betrayal in her church. She turned to see Talin and hugged him too.

“Master Talin, Lothian be praised you are okay and that those brutes didn’t harm you. It is wonderful to see you healthy and well. Please come! Sit! Sit!”

She gestured toward several plush chairs and waved over a couple young people in simple, white robes of the church. One held a platter of meats and cheeses, the other a tray of fluted glasses with very weak wine.

“I also have gifts for you from the church.” The young woman who had held the tray of glasses moved to the wall and replaced the platter with a small box. She brought it to Vogh and bowed her head as she handed it over.

“Inside you will find a powerful healing potion for each of you, and a scroll with the most powerful healing spell available to us. Is one of you able to use the spell?”

OOC: cure serious potions and a scroll of Heal.

“It is so important to myself, the Clergy and the Emperor of the Church himself that you know Heth’s actions and manipulations were not known to the church. He is condemned and branded a blasphemer. Any of our number encountering him know he is to be killed on sight. While I find the act distasteful, the method has proved effective: the Emperor has even put a bounty of 1,000 thrones on his head. Dead or Alive. But! On to happier business! I know Brother Faber has told you of the Sword of Lies, or rather the Sword of Truth under a terrible spell. We hate to ask you to return to that evil place, but retrieving that sword is of the utmost importance to the church. We offer twenty thousand (20,000) gold pieces, or double that in spellcasting services, or even divine magic item creation if you will retrieve this wonderful artifact for us.”

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Vogh
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Vogh was very surprised by how Sister Mara reacted when she first saw Vogh and the rest of her friends.  She was more taken back by how the elder woman almost acted like a mother to them, especially her and Talin.  It was a nice thing to see that even these higher ranking folks could be personable.

Vogh had nodded and smiled when she told her about Heth and how the church was reacting to the news about his treachery.  When Sister Mara then asked them to come to sit, they all moved over and sat to speak with her.  When Vogh was offered the gifts of the potion and the scroll Vogh said, we all thank you for the generous gifts.  Julia will be able to use this scroll to great effect should we need it.  Vogh then turned to Julia and handed her the scroll.  Vogh then turned to Bharash who had drunk a potion in the battle and handed him the potion.  Here you go Bharash, this can replace the potion that you used in the battle with the basilisk.  Both of them thanked Sister Mara for the gifts, then with a short bow of their heads to her.

When Sister Mara mentioned the sword of lies (truth), Vogh said, yes he did mention it to us.  We will welcome the chance to return back down to the warrens.  We want to see this adventure until its end and seal up the warrens forever.  We thank you for all your support in the matter as well.  Also, so you know, the church is not the only entity we are working with either.  Deacon here and Avach have put us in contact with the Inverted Pyramid.  THeir resources are wide much as your own and have aided us in the adventure so far.  I know that both don’t exactly get along but we must use all that we can to get the warrens sealed, for that is the ultimate goal here.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
It was clear Vogh’s statement about them working with the Inverted Pyramid was the first Sister Mara had heard of this. She quickly covered her surprise with a nod. “I understand. No effort should be spared in preventing that evil place from being accessed by anyone, ever again. Such evil should be locked up for all eternity. Go with Lothian’s blessing and the knowledge that the Church is behind you.”

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh and the others thanked Sister Mara once more and then headed out of the Cathedral.

They hailed two carriages once more and made their way back to the Minstrel to await their next meeting.  They talked lightly about what was said but since they weren’t all together Vogh didn’t make any snap decisions about what to do next.

When they returned, they went to their rooms.  Vogh wanted to check on Degar to see how the weapons were coming along in their redemption.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
OOC: I’m not entirely sure how long it’s been so I’m going to say he’s only completed one item.

Avach departed at the church, stating his intent to meet them with Jevicca at the Minstrel later that same evening.

Belie looked shaken by the entire thing and he didn’t speak for the entirety of their return trip. Vogh and her entourage entered the Minstrel once more and made their way up to the duo of rooms they were renting for everyone.

Degar was happy to see them, as was Thariad. The dwarf wizard was quite happy with one piece he had already completed. The enchanted longsword had taken on a completely different visage and Vogh marveled at the piece.

“Miss Vogh, look at this! The very construction of the item has changed with its redemption.”

The bard could clearly see the previously evil weapon’s shape and look had indeed changed. Previously the entire blade was black with streaks of red resembling blood. The cross guard had been serrated and resembled evil, devil’s wings. Its pommel had ended in a skull seemingly frozen in mid-scream.

But now, the countenance of the sword had completely changed. The entire blade gleamed a reflective silver with streaks of blue replacing the red. Rather than black, battish wings, the guard now resembled feathered, angle wings. Finally, the pommel showed a beautiful woman’s face with eyes closed, looking regal and peaceful.

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Vogh
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Upon seeing Degar and Thariad safe Vogh was glad for it.  Their group had done quite a bit of damage to these Pact Lords and they have some interesting people that are able to travel ethereal and portal here and there with ease.

When Degar had shown Vogh the longsword he had redeamed she beamed with a great smile.Degar, this blade is gorgeous!!   Vogh had asked about if the features of it changed as it became redeamed or if there was some magic of his tossed in there.  I can’t wait to see how the others turn our Degar.  Keep up the great work.

The rest of the day was spent relaxing and waiting for Jevvica and Avach to show up.

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Avach Ur-Tesstrin
———————————————————–
Avach returned to their room at the Minstrel, alone. The tall blonde man had a blank look on his face when he entered and regarded the group. It seemed to fade away as he looked over all six of the Banewarrens Delvers and explained the situation.

“Jevicca sends her regards but is unable to attend us at this time. The Pyramid has dispatched wizards to inspect the disturbance you saw in the air on the belfry of the church and they will inform us of their findings. Jevicca assured me that all your efforts have not gone unnoticed, and you will all be handsomely rewarded for your amazing contributions to this endeavor and the safety of Ptolus. She has asked me to accompany you all once more into the Banewarrens in an effort to finally seal the accursed place before any other evil entities get the idea to go searching for artifacts.”

He stopped to regard the faces of all those assembled he had now accompanied for several days of intense danger.

“If there is anything you all need which the Pyramid can provide, please let me know now and I will take your requests to hopefully be fulfilled before we return. Might we be braving such a venture come morning?”

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh listened to what Avach had to say and what the Inverted Pyramid wanted.  Even if they got the sealing rod to reseal the banewarrens, the key was still out there and could be used to open the warrens back up again.  It would be fruitless to seal it without the key.

Avach, I realize we need to seal the banewarrens, but we must locate the key.  As far as we know the key was with that Illithid that we met twice now.  One thing we need is a way to stop the thing from affecting us.  I am not quite sure what that could be, but it may be the only way to stop him.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
After much deliberation with everyone, they all decided to head back to the disturbance in the morning to see what they could do.

As for magic items… to be continued.

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Belie
———————————————————–
During the deliberation it was clear Belie was not happy about the situation. “Hold on… You have no idea what this thing is, what it does, where it goes – if it’s even a portal – but you all want to just jump through it?! I’m not sure about you, but that seems a little like a suicide mission. Listen, we killed a bunch of their people, er, monster-things. And that tentacle-headed-freak thing has escaped us twice. But now we want to mess with something of theirs we’re completely ignorant about…?”

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Talin
———————————————————–
Talin listened to what Belie had to say and though he didn’t disagree with what he was saying Talin who had been taken by these Pactlords wanted the most revenge against them.  Talin didn’t quite remember all that had happened to him, but he did remember the tentacles boring into his brain to find information.  Talin had no idea how much they got from him, which is why it seemed that Vogh had taken obvious precautions and moved everyone to The Ghostly Minstrel.

Belie, I know it is a bit scary not knowing what is inside.  Perhaps when we get there tomorrow something will have been found out about what it is.  We need that key and it is probably through that disturbance.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
Deacon too had watched carefully what was being talked about.  Deacon had the sneaking opinion that the disturbance was a portal to another plane.  It is probably this Quaan that these creatures are all tied too.  This also means that there are probably a lot more creatures there as well.  This was his only worry.

Vogh I think I can say that we are with you, but know that if this is a gate to another plane.  There will be more creatures there that we will probably have to defeat besides the human, mind flayer, the spider thing that took Talin, and the bugbear.  We would be drastically outnumbered there.  I think what we should do is head back down into the banewarrens and figure out if we can find the sealing rod.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
As the others began discussing the decision to head to the disturbance, it was Deacon’s words that caught her the most and had her thinking about her decision.

Deacon does have a point.  We have no idea what we will face there and so maybe you and Belie are right.  Vogh then turns to Talin.  I am sorry Talin but I think we will head to the Banewarrens first.  Let the church and the Inverted Pyramid learn more about the disturbance before we just go blindly there.  Besides, if they are so bent on finding artifacts in the banewarrens then they will send others there that we can exact our revenge on.

Change of plans… in the morning we head to the banewarrens.  You can have us arrive at the Manor for your post if you want.

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Belie
———————————————————–
Belie visibly breathed out a sigh of relief. He had already gone farther and encountered more than he ever intended to after asking the bard duo for help. The rewards had been substantial, but he found himself in worse and worse situations with more and more powerful beings. Other than his equipment, he had no magic of his own like nearly everyone else. Even Avach, a member of the Inverted Pyramid – a huge group of wizards – had been bested by the tentacle-squid-faced thing. Belie was just a rogue. A simple “locksmith” and trap handler. He felt things were rapidly going beyond his depth. Still, going into the Banewarrens once more, with physical traps he could deal with, was far preferable to jumping into some portal to only the gods knew where.

OOC: Where is G the construct?

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Narrator
———————————————————–
With the evening waning Vogh wanted to discuss with Ishara and Vesto their capture. With a rap on the door Vesto opened it to see Vogh and greeted her.

“Well, Miss Vogh, what brings you to see us this evening? It’s getting rather late.”

When they came before Ishara and Vogh asked them about their capture and inquisition at the hands of the Pactlords both of them looked at her with complete confusion. Both said they had not encountered any such thing and Vesto himself sword he had not been in the church, nor had Vogh escorted him out of the church after rescuing him. The man and woman were both quite confused.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
G is in the room working on scorpions 😉  He will come with us when we head back down.
Would the Inverted Pyramid have cloaks of resistance that we could borrow at the least? Trying to think of the value they are trying to offer.

When Vogh and Talin began to talk with Ishara and Vesto, the happy look she had on her face at first was then erased by a look of worry.  I am soo happy that it wasn’t either of you but we saw you in the church Vesto, plain as day.  It wasn’t an illusion and I couldn’t detect any magic whatsoever.  Whatever the thing was, it had to be powerful.  Ishara, might you know of any such creature that can so fool someone even beyond magic?  Vogh asked Ishara.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Ishara and Vesto were taken aback by the story Vogh told regarding them being impersonated. The wise and studied woman thought for a moment on Vogh’s question.

“There are a number of monsters capable of changing their shape physically, which once completed would not show as magical. Anyone with powerful enough spells could do the same. If it was a true change of their form to another, and not an illusion, then that would not be revealed as magic by anything less powerful than a True Seeing spell. I’m not a caster, but I’m well red on magics. Monsters I’ve read about with such abilities start with dragons, phasms, vampires, yuan-ti, many demons and devils. The list is long Miss Vogh. Without more information, there is no way for me to narrow down the options for you. I’m sorry.”

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Talin
———————————————————–
Talin spoke then, I think how they got the image of Vesto was because of me.  They had me connected to some machine that could see my memories.  Honestly, I am not even sure what all they saw but they must have seen you both.  That leads me to a point.  If you have somewhere to go for a little while it might be wise.  These monsters are looking for answers about the banewarrens and since you are a person which excels at finding knowledge, you may be a target now.

Talin certainly didn’t want anyone else hurt at this time.  We are going to try and go back into the banewarrens and see if we can’t get them sealed once and for all.

I think while Talin and I are doing this Belie and the others could go sell the stuff we can sell.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
… placeholder for roll20 fight …

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Narrator
———————————————————–
The following morning everyone awoke in the cramped room together. Geristranomos had not “slept” that night, but instead remained on vigil through the remainder of the evening to ensure there were no more disturbances. No other excitement disturbed the friends and morning dawned without further incident.

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Belie
———————————————————–
Since Talin had returned, so he thought, and things had calmed a bit with two defeats and retreats of the  pact Lords, Belie had opted to return to his regular room at the Welcome Inn.

The rogue knew nothing of the night’s events and thus his excitement was not well received when he burst into the shared room to showcase his new shield which had been in his room when he awoke that morning.

“It’s here! This is amazing! You have got to see this!” He rattled out breathlessly.

Belie released the shield from his grasp and the metallic barrier floated before him. He moved left and right quickly only to have the shield follow his every move.

“How pitchkettled is that?!”

The surface of the shield gleamed nearly as reflective as a mirror. Mithral made it incredibly light and there were hand holds to use the shield mundanely. In addition Belie had a new addition to his pack which allowed him to latch the shield into place. In the right light the mithral surface gleamed with a crimson hue.

Belie’s exuberance quickly waned when he saw the tired eyes of his companions, noticed both Vogh and G were in the shared room – instead of her private one – and that someone was missing.

“Where’s Talin?”

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh was a little ragged after the night was interrupted.  The rest of her sleep was restless.  She was still missing Talin and she had no idea where he was though she had a sneaky suspicion that is was pulled through the portal in the church.

When Belie arrived and was shocked to see everyone there Vogh meekly smiled and said, He never was here.  It was a Dark Naga that was changed to resemble Talin.  It attacked me in the other room.  I battled her and called for help which is probably the only reason why she lived.  She put me to sleep with one of her attacks.

She then turned to everyone and said, I know we had decided to head to the banewarrens today, but I can’t in no way delay freeing Talin.  There is no doubt to me that the disturbance will lead us to where he is.  So I am going to the church and then through the gate or portal or whatever it is.  Will you all come with?

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Belie
———————————————————–
Belie just shook his head, once again frustrated by magical abilities to cause so much damage. The rogue had been thinking a great deal about these powers brought against him recently. He was contemplating two courses of action. The first would be to learn some magic of his own, but that would be entirely new and foreign to him. He did know several magic users currently, so at least he had some options there. Secondly, Belie had been wondering about the possibilities of negating magic. Clearly he benefited from magic on his own person, his armor, his shiny new shield, his weapon, backpack, and on-and-on it went. But maybe there were ways to stop these magic users. All these thoughts rolled about his mind as they made their way to the Temple once more to see about Talin.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
The group got two carriages again and made their way to the Temple in Rivergate. Outside, two City Watch guards were stationed, as were two Order of the Dawn guards. After stopping in front of the church all six of the friends disembarked. Vogh approached the guards and explained who they were, and what they were doing, which quickly gained them entrance.

Vogh knew right where to head. There had really only been a couple rooms they didn’t inspect in the tumult of the moment. One was the small room trapped behind the felled basilisk, and the other was the locked room across from where they found the fake Vesto.

Together the group moved the basilisk’s corpse out of the way enough to reach the doorway and Vogh’s breath caught as she saw Talin standing as a stone statue in the room. Her quick wit with capturing the monster’s blood saved the man she loved. It took all the vials she collected, but Talin once more stood before her.

OOC: I’m hand waving equipment and just saying he was petrified with all of it. I know that’s less realistic b/c the dark naga probably would have kept all his stuff but that just seems wrong at this point in time. Not to say I won’t do that in the future 😀

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Belie
———————————————————–
While Vogh was taking care of Talin, Belie went up to the room across from the one they had encountered the other shape shifter and worked on the very good lock.

The room appeared to serve as a bedchamber as well as a practice room. A wooden sparring dummy on a turning base stood in the middle of the northern portion of the room, where all manner of melee weapons hung on the walls amid a few shields. A bed, a dresser, a full-length mirror, a ceramic tub, and a wardrobe furnished the southern portion of the room. Then a stack of towels and clothing rested upon the dresser. A book lay open on the bed.

The book on the bed was Fighting Techniques of the Pirate Kingdoms. All the melee weapons were simple or martial, and none were masterwork or magical. All were sturdy and serviceable. The dresser and wardrobe held clothing and personal effects.

He came back down and handed the book to Bharash. “Maybe something you would find interesting? I would like to read it after you.”

[Private to GM: Belie rolled 26 using 1d20+13 ((13))

A secret compartment in the back of the dresser (Search check, DC 20 to find) holds a bag with 294 gp and a potion of cure moderate wounds.]

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Vogh
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When Vogh saw Talin as a statue, she almost fell over and cried.  It was then that she remembered that she had the vials of blood from the basilisk.  Carefully she uncorked and poured the blood all over the statue.

When Talin began to move around as the blood soaked into the stone, Vogh took a huge sigh and once he was completely free she wrapped her arms about him.  Is it really you Talin?  I thought I lost you!

The others then move up and begin clapping Talin on the shoulder and telling him they were glad to see he was okay.

Okay, I think enough is enough, we need to go speak with Jevvica and arrange better payment for this for them.  We have been turned to stone, kidnapped, stunned so we can not react and last night I almost died.

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Bharash
———————————————————–
Bharash had just finished patting Talin on the shoulder when Belie returned and handed him the book.  He opened it and let the pages go by as if he was paging through it.  He would have to look at it more thoroughly before he had a decision on it.  Thank you, I will make sure it gets to you when I finish!

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Belie also told the group there was a number of weapons in the same room he found the book. Of course the group decided to head up there and stow of them away in their magical backpacks. A quick spell determined none of the weapons, and nothing else in the room, glowed with magic.

  • Battle aspergillum
  • 2x Punching Daggers
  • 2x Spiked Gauntlets
  • Morningstar
  • 3x Short Spears
  • 2x Long Spears
  • Longsword
  • 2x Throwing Axes
  • Kukri
  • Scimitar
  • Light wooden shield
  • Short sword
  • Flail
  • Ankus
  • Bardiche
  • Guisarme
  • Halberd

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Once more the group returned to the Minstrel. Everyone was happy to have Talin returned. Belie road with the mostly blind lady, Julie, and the deaf wizard, Deacon, to have some quiet as Vogh, Talin and Bharash were chatting quite a bit.

Avach was drinking from a large cup when the group entered. He set down the cup along with a silver piece and stood to greet them. “Hello my friends. I’ve met with my superiors and Jevicca will be joining us momentarily. May we convene upstairs in your shared room for privacy?”

The tall blonde man followed after the group and entered the room behind them, shutting the door. Avach pulled a small stone from his pocket and spoke softly into it. “We are all here.” Only a few minutes passed before the beautiful Jevicca Norr entered the room.

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Vogh
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Once inside the room Vogh turned to Avach and spoke plainly, We need a meeting with either Jevvica or someone that can make a decision about us being rewarded for what we are doing. Or giving us a way to defeat this illithid stun thing!

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Jevicca Nor
———————————————————–
Jevicca strode inside the room like she owned it and shut the door behind her with that mysterious red glass arm of hers.

“Hello friends of Ptolus. Banewarrens Delvers. Pact Lord Defeaters. Church of Lothian Cleansers. Your titles are many, and increasing. Although it’s no surprise to the Pyramid that a cleric of their order would be corrupt, it seems not to be going over well in their organization. Thankfully, no matter of ours, as it seems the Pyramid and the Church have the same goal currently: closing and Permanently sealing the Banewarrens. Avach has told us about the monsters you all have defeated to date, and they are considerable. He shared with us about the debilitating presence of the illithid, or mind flayer if you prefer. We have borrowed an item which should assist you in this endeavor.”

With a snap of her glass fingers a flag with a strap appeared in her hand.

“I stress, this is on loan from a powerful friend who has dealt with these psionic beasts before. It should be returned promptly.”

The banner was a rectangular military standard depicting a white, two-tailed swirl—like a stylized overhead view of a hurricane—on a dark green background. The banner fluttered even in the room where they all stood, despite there being no wind.

“When this banner is held it will automatically suppress, but not dispel, any magical fear effects on everyone within twenty feet. It will also prevent anyone in that radius from becoming stunned. That should let you bring that abomination to its knees. There is also a way to strap the banner on a backpack frame to leave your hands free.”

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Vogh
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Even as Vogh was explaining to Avach her feelings about protection, Jevicca strode right in the door.  The woman certainly had a flair for showing up at the right moment Vogh thought.

Vogh was about to say something but Jevicca spoke first.  Vogh listened to what she said and when Jevicca pulled out the banner Vogh’s eyes widened.  When Jevicca began to explain the properties the banner had, Vogh looked closely at the banner trying to identify anything she might know from her studies.

Jevicca, that is just what we needed.  The powers from the mind flayed has stopped up twice now.  This will definitely give us the upper hand at least in the initial stages of battle.  Vogh took the banner and looked at it even more while saying, I will guard this with my very life.  Thank you again.  Now I would like to talk about what rewards are to be given to us for sealing the banewarrens.  I think that risking our lives demands a lot more than what is offered based on the threat we have seen thus far.  What do you think Jevicca?

Vogh looked to the others and said, We have Talin back and now this great boon to our power shall we head back to the banewarrens?

Once all agreed they said thanks again and bye to Jevicca and headed to the manor.

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Jevicca Nor
———————————————————–
Jevicca gave a wry smile at Vogh’s question of compensation and nodded once.

“The reward for serving your fellow Ptolusites and saving people from many evils is not enough for you…?” She kept that wry smile and it was easy for all to catch the hint of sarcasm, but no judgement, in her voice.

“What reward do you feel would suit?”

Vogh explained she felt 5,000 gold per person would suffice, to which Jevicca nodded.

“Would you accept your fee in casting services and magical item creation, or enhancement?”

The group all nodded in agreement so Vogh responded for them in confirmation.

“Then it’s settled. You shall each be afforded five thousand gold in compensation for sealing the Banewarrens. Avach will still accompany you as our liaison and assist in any way necessary. May the magic of the standard protect you from the illithid.”

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh was pleased with herself for haggling out a better reward for everyone.  She knew they too were putting their hides on the line as well as her and the added bump would help in the end.  Though it seemed way too easy as Jevicca said YES too fast…

Once Jevicca was gone, Vogh talked to the others and they all decided to head to the manor and get this business taken care of once and for all.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Together everyone rode carriages once more to the old manor house. The large white structure seemed out of place in clean kept Oldtown, but there it stood. Grass and vines continued to grow in the yard around the place. Nature wouldn’t likely have a chance to reclaim the great house before someone in Ptolus did something. Few knew the secrets hidden beneath the manor.

Belie commented, enjoying his shield floating before him as they walked, “You know, like that family which was squatting in here before, anyone could just stumble down into the Banewarrens… We should tell the church or the wizards to post some guards here. Ya know?”

With that the group entered as they had several times now. Down into the wine cellar, which contained nothing anymore, they stepped into the dug tunnel and began their descent into the earth. Without incident the group of eight stepped into the Broken Seal area. At first glance nothing appeared to have been disturbed since their last visit.

The great door into the Banewarrens still stood partially open, unable to be resealed without the Sealing rod. G piped up, “We really must reseal this place my friends. Perhaps I should focus on finishing this Warding Generator while you explore deeper. But… I will have you word that you’ll not open any Vault Doors or Sealed Doors.”

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Vogh
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When they got to the Manor Vogh wondered if the family was still inside, but as they got inside she didn’t see them. Belie could tell that Vogh was looking about and commented on having a guard posted.  Vogh thought about that before, but the last guards that were posted were killed.  Perhaps, We should just stay in the Manor until the mission is complete.  Vogh responded to Belie and also to the others.  Vogh didn’t want anyone else falling inside the banewarrens either.

After a short talk about it, they continued down into the banewarrens and to the unsealed outer door.  At G’s thoughts about finishing the warding generator, Vogh smiled and thought that a perfect idea.  Yes, please get this thing in working order so that once we have the sealing rod we can finally seal the warrens for good.  We promise not to open anything we shouldn’t.

With that, the group headed deeper inside.  Belie knew where all the traps were thus far and so they made their way to the chamber where they fought the mindflayer the first time.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
The floor of this odd-shaped room lies about 3 feet below the level of the door. Blue tiles, each about 6 inches across, cover the floor and the walls up to a level just below the bottom of the door. Here and there, at the top of the level of the tiles, a rectangular grate covers a hole about 10 inches wide and 6 inches high.

Near the middle of the room, two tall columns made of glass rise from floor to ceiling.They are filled with water,and each also contains what appears to be a giant, monstrous octopus. The pillars stand about 30 feet apart and have a diameter of 8 feet each. Between them, hanging down from the ceiling to a point about 6 feet from the floor, you see a steel cylinder. The bottom of the cylinder has a heavy, hinged metal cap with a circular wheel-valve in the middle of it.

OOC: I deleted the big image b/c it skewed the page

Full Size: https://ptol.us/img/3507

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Bharash
———————————————————–
Bharash saw the creatures inside the pillars of glass and licked his lips.  Living in Ptolus had alotted him ample opportunities to eat fish and it was something that he enjoyed.  He had on occasion eaten other creatures that came from the bay as well and one of those things was octopus.  It was something he enjoyed a lot and now looking at the things in the pillars had his tummy growling.

Can we eat them?  Bharash asks.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Even down in the banewarrens, Vogh manages to put a smile on her face when Bharash makes his comment.  I think we best not do anything to them.  They may be evil octopi.  I mean they are down here after all.

With nothing else leading out of this room, Vogh makes sure to have the others look around.  There may be something hidden as she couldn’t just see this being a dead end.  But maybe it was.  Everyone pan out and let’s give this place a thorough look before we head back and find another route.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
The group searched all about the blue room. No one messed with the circular valve in the center of the room just yet. Everyone was tapping on the walls, looking for magic and trying to find any way beyond his strange chamber. What kept the octopi alive all this time in a closed dungeon?

Finally, Belie was in the far corner of the room when he hollered. “I found a door.” The southeast corner of the room hid a secret door. It was on the same level as the regular door entering the room, 3 feet above the floor and right above the top edge of the tile line.

“I didn’t find any traps. Would one of you check for magic?”

A quick check revealed no magic so the rogue slid a dagger into a space in the tiles and slowly pried open the door. It opened silently to reveal a small hallway which ended in yet another door. Again, no magic was seen so the rogue proceeded very carefully and slowly down the short path to another door. Meticulously and painstakingly the young man looked over every inch of the dead end.

Finally Belie pushed against the wall and it too swung open. The door had granted them access to the far side of the room divided in half by the wall of force.

15:19, Today: Narrator rolled 20,16,25,19,17,15 using 1d20+10,1d20+12,1d20+12,1d20+2,1d20+1,1d20+3 ((10,4,13,17,16,12)).

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Narrator
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As the group looked around the room which appeared to be yet another dead end Belie once again discovered something.

“I don’t think this is a wall…” He was running his hands along the very end of the hallway. “Look, there are creases here between where the side walls end and where this wall is located. But I cannot find a method to open it. Plus…” He tapped on the stone with the back end of a dagger. “This thing is REALLY thick… It can’t just be a hinged door, especially since there are no hinges on either side that I can determine. Clearly that magic wall was put there to keep people from reaching this thing.”

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Vogh
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Vogh wasn’t quite sure what to do but there had to be some way.  Then it came to her, If this is indeed a doorway what do you think about that one room with all the gears?  That place may have something to do with this, if this is as heavy as you say Belie.  How about we go back there and try the levers G told us about, least we know the sequence on how to do it.

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Vogh
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When the group returned back to the levee room Vogh asked Deacon to summon one of his creatures to do the task of pulling the levers.

Deacon nodded and agreed that the added precaution was smart.  So, Deacon summoned 2 earth elementals and had one go to begin activating the levers.  First one was the South West levee, then the NE, SE, and finally the NW lever was done.

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Narrator
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The group stood back in the safety of the double doors on the ruined floor trap as they watched Deacon’s elemental go to work. Lumbering forward the great beast first had to move switches to rotate the entire room to expose the South West ceiling hole. Amazingly the ancient device still functioned, turning with a squealing protest of metal against stone.

When the column stopped rotating, the SW hole lined up with the ladder. Deacon instructed the elemental to climb and move the lever. Thankfully the bulk of the earth beast didn’t destroy the ladder. Nothing seemed to happen when the lever was moved to the appropriate position.

Deacon guided the elemental through the process Geristranomos had told them. Great pilar, platform and ladder rotated with a little less noise each time. When the last lever was thrown the group felt a rumbling beneath their feet and through the very walls.

Everyone stepped back and saw the end of the corridor beyond the wall of force start to rise into the ceiling. It appeared to be a gigantic block of stone, a plug, which revealed a corridor beyond that immediately turned right.

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Vogh
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When the final lever was thrown and it seemed like the whole place was coming down.  This apparently worried Geristranomos as well as he came down the corridor to see what was happening. The group had already made their way around through the secret passage and beyond the wall of force before G caught up to them.

Geristranomos was a little agitated on the other side of the wall of force, but Vogh reassured him that they wouldn’t open any sealed doors once more.

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Geristranomos
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It was hard to read the facial expressions of a construct which had none of the facial muscles which humans possessed, but it was not hard to tell the centuries old, sentient, metal-man was pensive about them proceeding deeper into the Banewarrens. He nodded at Vogh’s reassurance then watched them pass through the ‘plug’ covered area after speaking plainly,

“Be careful where you go friends. The banewarrens house some of the worst evil this world has ever seen, and when Master Danar fell a great number of evil creatures came to reside in here. I know not which of them remain. Proceed with caution…”

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Narrator
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The group made the right turn and immediately saw three Vault Doors one right after the other.

These doors were steel, covered with etched runes of warding. Currently shut, the seams are filled with a magical metallic substance to further keep them permanently closed.

Looking down the hall they could tell it opened into a larger room.

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Vogh
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Vogh and the group had told G that they wouldn’t open any sealed doors, so as they passed these vault doors and found them sealed, they bypassed them and went towards the big room at the end of the hall.

When they got in they could see a set of stairs that led to a raised platform with a door set in the north wall.  Being cautious Vogh asked Belie to check for traps and as he entered the room he was suddenly blasted by some lightning.  As they traced where the flash came from they saw what Vogh described as a Will o Wisp, highly resistant to magic.  After a short battle with the wisp, they killed it easily enough and then proceeded on.

When they opened the locked door, thanks to Belie’s masterful work of his tools, they saw another hall and stairs leading up.  As they approached the stairs, Belie spotted more of the statues that shot spears which they had experienced before.  Vogh had been the one to get the amethyst gems before but at great risk.  This time Vogh asked Bharash, who was heavier armored than her, to retrieve the gems and disarm the trap.  It seemed he did so with ease as the spears just bounced off his armor or he nimbly dodged the spears.

They moved on once more up the stairs and then turned right and to more stairs leading higher.  In the room before them stood a massive marble statue of a winged horse rears atop a foot-high,5-foot-wide pedestal in the center of this room. The walls are covered in plaster, much of which is peeling, cracked, and chipped. All the plaster has faded to a brownish yellow, but it still bears painted images of majestic temples and regal looking warriors in shining armor. Angels and eagles fill the skies. A few bronze sconces hang empty on the walls.  Julie could feel a powerful sense of goodness in this room.  After looking with her detect magic she could tell that there was an active hallow spell placed upon the room.

In the adjoining room, there was some writing on the wall which many couldn’t read, but Deacon could and so he read it aloud to the others:

For I see a future day when all the darkness is gone and the taint of evil has been forever banished. Even now, the demons have returned to the Abyss, and the legions of Hell itself fear the light of our world’s day.  I have chosen not to slay, not to destroy, but to contain.  Just as nature renews itself, the living gaining life from the dead so too does evil draw upon even that which is destroyed.  To crush evil is to free it and let it become new darkness.  A new bane.  The banes shall be sealed away.  Sealed away, along with their evil essence.  Trapped forever.

The long eastern wall of this chamber is covered in large, flowing script etched into the stone and filled with white plaster. At the north end of the room, a large alcove holds a white marble statue of a man wearing long robes, holding a wooden staff. He has a gentle look upon his face and a wistful look in his eyes. The southern wall is damp.  After a quick search and not finding anything hidden the group moved on again.

When they got past the statue of the Pegasus, Belie noticed something that was hidden.  A secret passage, but there was no way to open it that they could find.  Frustrated, Vogh pushed everyone forward once more.  Just then Talin and Belie heard faint moans and what seems like screams coming from the right corridor.  They head that way to follow the sounds which once more leads them to a dead end room with a sealed door.  The screams and moans were quite clear to everyone now, but there was no way they were going to break a seal as they had promised.

The group checked the dead end for anything secretive but found nothing and thus moved back to the other direction and headed north.  At the promptings of Vogh, Belie had been checking every intersection and turn for anything secret.  Having found nothing they finally came to an intersection and decided to head forward to a room filled with few bits of wood lying on the floor in the northern section.  A few holes drilled into the east wall suggest that, at one time, some sort of structure was in place here.  With another dead end, they backtracked and went north down the next passage which turned right and ended with another door.  Belie picked the lock once more and as he opened the door he saw some gorilla looking creatures lying on straw bedding.  They had 4 arms instead of two which Vogh described as girallons, viscious beasts.  Vogh mentally asked Belie if he could kill them in their sleep?  Not liking the idea but deciding it best, Belie entered quietly and managed to kill the four girallons.

A short, dead-end section of the girallons’ room hosts a small shrine with a delicate trellis of carved wood arching above it. Strangely, green ivy vines wrap around the trellis, apparently alive and thriving despite the lack of natural light. The shrine itself boasts a small wooden idol of a woman wearing a long gown of leaves, with birds perched upon her shoulders and small animals scurrying about her feet.  After checking for traps Belie says, I cannot find anything mechanical around this. How on earth are these creatures alive, and this ivy alive, when these rooms have apparently been sealed for centuries?

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Vogh
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Having checked for any further traps on the idol, Belie told Vogh that nothing could be found. Vogh stepped up then and grabbed hold of the idol and tried to pick it up. As it left the pedestal the idol crumbled to dust in Vogh’s hands and fell to the floor. Vogh looked to the others in disbelief as the idol crumbled, well guess that wasn’t something we were supposed to touch. Vogh said with a giggle.

With all of the areas having been checked now besides the sealed vault doors, Vogh told the others to comb the place thoroughly to find what they had missed. Moving from section of wall to section of wall to include looking up at the ceilings and floors, the group scoured the place on this level. Finally in one of the rooms they had been in before, Belie noticed that the roof was an illusion. Belie enacted his spider-climb boots and ventured up into the darkness beyond the illusion. He found a lever in which he pulled and as he did so the wall in front of the others moved to show a secret hallway. Traveling down the hall they found more vault doors which as promised to G they left alone. They continued on to another dead end and looking again for secret doors Belie found one and expertly unlocked it. What was found on the other side of the door was a 10×0 room with a glass door on the opposite side. On the other side of the glass door it was clear that the very large room was filled to the top with water. After watching a little while they noticed that there were two rather large octopi inside that came out briefly to capture a fish and return back down in 2 circular holes in the floor.

On the north wall of the small room there was a fountain looking thing with 2 levers sticking out of the wall. After much thought and deliberation and trials of the levers, they found that if they closed the door they had opened and pulled a lever, water came pouring inside the room. So they decided to flood the room and then just before the room filled, Deacon cast a pit into the other room to lower the water level so they could have an air pocket at the top to breath if needed. When the room was completely full Vogh pulled the other lever and the glass door opened up. Deacon then cast a summoning spell and summoned 2 water elementals to assist them in case the octopi decided to come out and fight. The group edged forward into the large room and almost immediately the first octopus came out and attacked the group. The second one emerged a moment later and moved to attack as well, that was when Deacon went to the surface and summoned 4 more water elementals to join in the battle. After less than a few seconds though, the octopi were killed as the water elementals and Bharash made quick work of the animals.

With blood in the water now, deacon ordered the elementals to escort the group to the other glass door that was open on the opposite side of the room. When they all got inside the room Vogh once more moved the lever and the glass door closed and the room began to drain. After a minute the room was empty and they began to look around once more. What they found was a chain that was dangling from the ceiling. Belie once more checked for traps but didn’t find any so Vogh just grabbed hold of the chain and pulled down. With nothing seeming to happen Vogh told the others to look for something secret once more. In a moment they found a secret trap door in the floor and after opening it, deacon sent the elementals down the rungs to the floor which was 12ft down. The elementals went to the bottom and then moved north along a passageway. After hearing or seeing nothing the group moved down into the darkness and followed the passageway themselves. At the end of the tunnel was another set of rungs that went up 12ft to another trap door. They followed through the door and was in another room much like the previous without the chain dangling down. There was a door in the east wall though which they opened only to find that they were back in the room with the statue of the Pegasus.

Back to where they were before Vogh looked around once more and to the north they found that there was now a section of the wall that had moved and showed more hallway. Moving to the area they noticed that were three more vault doors on the west wall. Moving past them as promised once more they moved forward and began to feel a slight wind upon their faces. Not knowing what it was they advanced when suddenly they were hit with real strong winds that picked up everyone except Talin. When the wind was identified as an air elemental Talin attacked and after some back and forth and some key healing from Julia the group finished off the elemental. With only one way out of the room via a door in the north wall that was covered by a screen, the group checked for traps and unlocked the door and went through. The hallway went to the east and after about 20 ft as they walked, they were suddenly jolted by a spell that was cast into the floor to forbid people from entering the area. Having moved to the other side the group healed up again thanks to Julia. Julia then said that the area may be password protected but she had no way of knowing what it was at this time.

As they all moved into the next room they found a sealed door which needed the banewarrens key to open. Discouraged Vogh thought about camping at the door, but Talin reminded her that they had an appointment to make with the Priest Helmut and also the fact that they didn’t have enough food for a long wait.

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Vogh
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When the group got to where G was once more at the beginning, Vogh told him that they would be back within a few days.  She told him how far they had gotten and what they had seen to that point.  So, unless we find the key or the Pact Lords come back we can’t get any farther than that.  Deacon is going to cast an alarm spell to notify us if anyone comes down into the banewarrens.  I would like you to accompany Deacon, Bharash, and Julia to an Inn to stay for the few days.  Deacon will be returning every day to redo the spell with you all as well.

Vogh then told the others what they were going to be doing while they did that.  We will also gather up enough supplies to make a long camp down in the warrens if needed.

With everything set up the group cast the spell and headed their own ways as planned.

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Narrator
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The group wound their way back through the door and hallways, shutting everything behind them to ensure anyone else “visiting” would have as hard a time as they in finding the Sealed Door entrance.

Finally they descended the stairs where the will o wisp had attacked and filed down the hallway with three vault doors. Much to their surprise, the hallway dead ended where there used to be an opening.

The levers in the rotating room where Geristranomos had provided them the combination to lift a huge stone “plug” must have been reset, and the plug replaced. The golden construct must have locked them inside after they entered?!

Vogh closed her eyes and reached out with her new mind powers and touched a surprised consciousness, which felt very mechanical. Geristranomos was very surprised at her telepathic touch but quickly discerned it was his friend and opened the plug.

Huge and heavy, it rose slowly to once more reveal the hallway which was divided with the wall of force. Geristranomos was already waiting for them by the time the large block reached the ceiling height. Impassivity on the construct’s face made it difficult to discern emotion, but G’s tone was certainly happy.

“My friends! It is good to see you whole and well!” He exclaimed with stiff arms extended in a mock open-armed greeting. “I trust you were not harmed, and that you stuck to our agreement not to open any Vault Doors?”

Upon seeing their nodded agreement he continued. “I apologize for sealing the plug after you entered, but my duty is to keep the banes sealed and protected. Had anything escaped that was the only preventative measure I could take. My intention was to open the plug to check for you regularly.”

The group understood and bode him no ill-will. G was very trepid about leaving the warrens unguarded, but he also knew he would be no match for the pactlords if they were to return. Like the group had in the other vaults, they retraced their steps, closing both the secret doors which led behind the wall of force, then resetting all the levers to drop the plug back into place, and retracing their steps back to the opening.

Once outside the original banewarrens door the group first entered what felt an eternity before, Geristranomos revealed the secret panel which hid the special combination lock, and mundanely sealed the door once more.

“Unfortunately the door will not be properly, magically, sealed until you have retrieved the sealing rod, but hopefully this will at least slow down the brutes. Yet, if they have the Banewarrens key, Danar’s own hand, then this lock will open at its touch.”

He seemed sad about this prospect, but there was nothing else they could do.

“At least the plug will not raise just by the key’s touch. One must correctly move the rods, and even then the hand will not bypass the magical wall, so any intruders must find the secret passage inside the Drainage Pool room.” At mention of the drainage room he stopped and looked to the group.

“Oh bother. You all clearly did not drain the Water Tank or it would have flooded the Drainage Pool room. Yet you said you reached the Sealed Door. What happened to the squids and the girallon guardians?”

Again the construct was sad at the loss of more protectors. Likely irreplaceable protectors. But there was nothing for it now, and he harbored no resentment toward them.

Everyone retraced their steps uneventfully through the dug tunnels and into the abandoned manor’s wine cellar to finally step foot into the failing light of evening over Oldtown.

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Vogh
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Before leaving the banewarrens, as planned Deacon had placed an alarm spell on two different spots, the first was the main door that was first opened with a wish spell by the pactlords, the second place Deacon had decided to place the alarm spell was one of the areas with the levers.  That would let Deacon know that not only did someone enter but also that they used the levers to enter deeper into the banewarrens.

After that, as they came out into the last glimmer of sun they all said their goodbyes and went about their separate ways.

Vogh, Talin, and Belie made their way back to the Ghostly Minstrel to have a good nights rest.  While the others found a place to stay that was close enough for them to be able to receive the alert from the alarm spell.

Not doing much else for the rest of the day besides eating and sleeping.

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Narrator
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Once again the group had a bit of down time on the 27th of Sun, waiting for their meeting with High Priest of the Watchers of the Skies, Helmut Itlestein. Vogh had instructed him to meet them at the Ghostly Minstrel. It was very unlikely the man would try anything against them in one of the most famous places in all Ptolus, which was often filled with very powerful people. One could hope anyway.

Belie remained at the Minstrel as well. There were so many things going on with there being a traitor in the most respected church, these monsters which ALL seemed able to just appear and disappear at will, not to mention their ability to imitate someone so completely as to fool a lover. Indeed the young man had found himself in the most dangerous situation of his life. He was terrified and excited all at the same time. Things certainly weren’t boring!

None of the group realized how exhausted they were from the constant adrenaline rush. They all ate voraciously and slept soundly, despite the dangers. Belie reminded the bard duo he needed only two hours of a sleep so they easily remained awake for him to rest in exchange for him guarding their sleep.

At breakfast on the 27th their old Paladin friend, Kalerecent, showed up at the Minstrel looking for them. He was slightly perturbed at the group exploring further without him, but he also had understood the group’s worries considering a man of his own order had turned out to be in league with the Pactlords. He swore to them he knew nothing and would do anything to aid them in their quest to seal the warrens as long as they allowed him to accompany them.

“My deepest apologies for the slight to my order. I pray the disgrace Heth does not sully your impression of Holy Lothian. I will kill the beast myself if we encounter him again…”

Kalerecent decided to remain at the Minstrel to be at quick hand for any needs the group had, and he further promised to watch over them during their meeting with Helmut the following day after Vogh & Talin explained the reason for them being here instead of in the warrens.

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Vogh
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As Vogh, Talin, and Belie are enjoying their meal and listening to the entertainment which was a comely young lady that was playing the flute.  She was really good too and had others humming along to her playing.

When Kal came inside the Minstrel, Vogh spotted him right away though didn’t call him over quite yet.  She didn’t want to bother the paladin in case he had something else going on.  Kal spotted them and came over though and sat with the trio.

Ah yes, we were in a bit of a hurry to return to the warrens.  I am sorry I didn’t seek you out beforehand.  Oh, and don’t worry about that fallen priest we won’t name.  His failures don’t have any effect on my beliefs.  Lothian is still mighty in my eyes.  We would love for you to join us when we return.  We may be heading back in two days.  Vogh then explained about the meeting with Helmut which Kal had agreed to accompany them on the morrow.

Thank you for the offer to join us with Helmut.  It might actually help as well.
He will be coming here to meet so we don’t have to travel anywhere.  We may very well leave right after the meeting to return to the warrens so please come prepared for a long time.
I am looking into getting something that will allow us to remain until we can seal them and we have no idea how long that will take, a week, a month even?  We don’t know.

After the talking and eating Vogh and Talin returned upstairs to check on their friends and see how they were fairing.  Vogh was particularly interested in how the weapons were coming.

Before retiring for the night, Vogh placed her Dream token under her pillow and dreamt of something that would help feed the group indefinitely for a long siege of the banewarrens and that she needed the item in a day and a half.  She then fell into her sleep with Talin close by her side.

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Helmut Itlestein
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In typical Belie fashion the rogue transformed himself into a nondescript person that should draw little attention among the crowd. He ordered food, drink and held a book to make it look as though he were merely passing time.

Kalerecent stuck out, but not horribly thanks to the eclectic patronage of the Ghostly Minstrel. Delvers, armed and armored, and people of renown frequented this establishment more than any other in the city. A lone knight bedecked in full plate was not abnormal.

Neither Vogh nor Talin had seen Helmut Itlestein in person before, but it was obvious who strode into the room. Following him was a construct which stood half a man taller than its ward. The High Priest of the Watcher of the Skies was dressed to impress. He wore a full length robe of spotless white. White shoes of soft leather peeked from beneath the fringes as he walked. Completely impractical for staying clean while walking through the city, his shoes made the statement he didn’t walk far. Over the robe he had a second layer of leather dyed blue and studded with silver circlets. A walking stick tapped the floor with his steps and finally a silver and blue holy symbol representing the magnificent telescope of his Order hung about his neck.

Wood floors creaked beneath the weight of the construct accompanying the older priest. Likely in his fifties but still venerable Helmut had short cropped hair and a clean cut beard which were as white as they were brunette. His clear blue eyes searched the crowd quickly and landed on Vogh.

Helmut and his guardian strode over to the group and the man extended a hand in greeting to Vogh first, then Talin.

“Greetings. Vogh Kath and Talin Ursalato? Yes?”

With their confirmation the high priest sat in a chair opposite the duo while his automaton took up a position behind his chair.

“Thank you for meeting with me. It has come to my attention you seem to dislike me and not understand my goals and motivations for our glorious city. You must understand that I love this city and all its inhabitants. I would do anything for the safety and prosperity of Ptolus. First, I’m certain you’re aware of the Republican Movement. This city is the center of everything happening today. The Empire is no longer of consequence. Soon, we will all realize that the next phase of our history is in our hands now. I doubt you’re vehemently opposed to my political feelings, however. Second is the situation with the future of our city, our very survival. After lengthy studies of the stars I have ascertained that children would be born with certain runes upon them, like the runebearers of old. These children are harbingers of a doom that is coming. You must understand the danger that faces our city, our very world. The Watcher’s have portended dozens of events correctly over the centuries. I believe you even benefitted from a piece of information my own studies revealed relating to a certain dark elf…? Yes…? None-the-less, we are on the same side. You are protecting Ptolus, and I am working to do the same. We should not be at odds my friends…”

[Private to GM: Notes for Helmut Meeting

“I would ally myself with Raguel himself if I thought it would save the city,” he has been quoted as saying.

Remember Helmut still has Phon and the baby is due any moment.

Various members of the Fate Weavers also belong to the republican movement. Considering that the Watcher and the Fate Weavers both specialize in divining the future, the republicans may be destined to grow more powerful in days to come.

Republicans want Ptolus to secede from the Empire and form its own new independent government run by representatives elected by the people.

After lengthy studies of the stars, he ascertained that children would be born with certain runes upon them, like the runebearers of old. These children are harbingers of the doom that is coming, and he will do whatever it takes to stop them. Even if it means slaying these children. Even if it means obtaining powerful artifacts of evil. Even if it means slaying the Commissar, the Holy Emperor, and whoever else stands in his way, and taking control of Ptolus by force.

Helmut is neutral in alignment, but the staves of Ghul are slowly turning him to evil. Accompanying him at all times is a shield guardian with a cure critical wounds spell stored within it, to be cast if Helmut drops unconscious (or if he commands it to cast it).

He has only the city’s best interests at heart and honestly loves Ptolus and its people more than anything. He is even right, after a fashion—the children being born with runes are related to a coming time of great change and possibly doom (see Chapter 6 in The Night of Dissolution adventure on the CD-Rom included with this book).

If the PC’s confront Helmut, they discover that he is preoccupied with some very strange sights in the sky. He believes that something is coming toward the world from far off, but he doesn’t know what it is or why it approaches.

The Ethics of the Situation

Over the course of this adventure, the player characters may find themselves on two different sides of the issue at hand. In other words, if they learn what Helmut believes, they might agree that, as distasteful as harming children is, it might be worth doing so to save the whole city. This, of course, assumes they believe his visions of doom brought about by runebearers. This adventure is more about roleplaying and character development than it is about killing things or getting treasure.

RUNEBEARERS AND HELMET ITLESTEIN

It is, in fact, a vague and misunderstood precognition of the Final Ritual that prompted Helmut Itlestein’s belief that runebearers pose a danger to the city. Once the Final Ritual is prevented, the “threat” that the runebearers present ends, although Helmut may not know that. (See Ptolus, page 389, for more on this important character.)

The DM may wish to involve Helmut in events after the adventure ends, as the player characters attempt to return the children to their rightful homes and families. Alternatively, Helmut may be blamed for the children’s disappearance and may be grateful to the PCs for helping to clear his name.

THE FINAL RITUAL

Spoken of only in whispers even by cultists, this ceremony is rumored to be the ultimate expression of loyalty and fidelity to the Lords of Chaos. It can be performed only by someone whom the dark masters choose to invest with power as they did in the ancient days, and it can occur only in times of widespread fear and panic. If completed, this ritual actually brings about the Night of Dissolution before its predestined time.]

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Vogh
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With Belie disguised and sitting about the room ready to aid her and Kal having joined them at the breakfast table, the trio waited for Helmut to arrive while they had a bite to eat.

When Helmut entered the Minstrel Vogh knew almost right away that this older gentleman had to be him.  If it wasn’t for his clothing, the rather large construct that entered behind him bore the truth.  Belie and Talin had spoken of the construct when they had spied on Helmut a few days past… course now that seemed forever with all that had occurred with the warrens and the church.

When Helmut greeted them, Vogh accepted his hand and gave it a firm grip while nodding.  Talin did likewise next and even said, Yes that is correct.  Clearly, the high priest was doing a little investigating on his own to know Talin’s last name.  Before Helmut took his seat and began to speak, Vogh introduced Kalerecent then let the priest speak.

Vogh listened very closely to the words being spoken and paid close attention to his mannerisms which often told much more than someone’s words.

High Priest Helmut, it isn’t that we don’t like you, its that as you say, we don’t know you.  There are many things that have happened over the course a the past few months that have led us to an opinion of you yes.  It is an opinion that if you want to be changed, will have to be reinforced with the truth.  I am not talking about prophecy either.  The problem with prophecy is that it can be interpreted wrong at times.  Certainly, there have been many situations where the Watcher’s have been right, but that doesn’t make them perfect.  We do not doubt your intentions to have a safe and prosperous Ptolus but as someone who I hold in high regard once said, Killing children is almost always evil. Follow your heart.

Vogh ignored the part about the politics of the city not wanting to get into a discussion about this without more knowledge of it.  She continued on and the next question she had was said in a hushed tone as she leaned closer to him, do you deny killing children with these runes?  Vogh then leaned back and waited for a response.  There was more that she wanted to say and instead of speaking them aloud she took a chance to enter his mind and said, what about the attempted murder of Phon?  We know that you had something to do with that even if we don’t have the proof.  Vogh then stopped the connection and waited for a response.

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Helmut Itlestein
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I hadn’t intended Kal to be sitting with you all, but rather at a nearby table similar to Belie. But we will run with what you wrote. 😀

If Vogh was expecting some kind of blanch or fearful expression from Helmut, she was disappointed. The older man did, however, raise an eyebrow at her mental intrusion.

“Well, well. So you’re a telepath as well Miss Kath? You are just full of surprises. I of course deny harming any children with runes. While my resolve is unflappable, no harm has come to a runebearer by my hand. Regarding the attack on my dear Phon, it was terrible. I believe you even broke into my home and saw that she was not only salubrious, but also well guarded. Am I correct?”

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Vogh
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Two could play the word game that Helmut was playing.  Course HE hadn’t killed or tried to kill any of the runebearers to date, but he had hired others to do just that and though Vogh hadn’t the proof needed at this time it was only a matter of time.

Vogh smiled harmlessly at the provocation of the comment about her breaking into his place.  I had done no such thing.  Though it is curious to me why Phon is at your home in the first place?  There are many questions that will remain unanswered at this time I guess.  So, High Priest Helmut, why did you want to meet with us?  Surely, it wasn’t to just clear the air that you have no ill will towards these children whom bear the rune.  Vogh looked at the high priest with a questioning look.

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Helmut Itlestein
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“Phon is a friend and very dear to my heart. I would not see her harmed in any way, so I’ve brought her in for protection. Indeed I do wish to clear the air. You seem good people, working to better Ptolus and make her people safer. Vogh, your adoptive family has a centuries long tradition with our fair City, one that predates the Empire…” Helmut paused for effect, reminding Vogh that at one time Ptolus was ruled only by the Noble families, Kath included. Then he moved on with a hand flourish and an innocent smile.

“But not to get into politics again. You are Friends of Castle Shard, another wonderful group of people benevolently looking over Ptolus and the residents. I would not have us on opposite sides of a coming conflict. My desire is only to inform you that the Watchers, and other future focused groups like the Fate Weavers, know something is coming. Something dangerous. Evil. Destructive. Would that we could partner to protect this city we obviously all love and have put our very lives on the line.”

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Vogh
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She wasn’t going to get anywhere blaming this man before her.  The best strategy as she had read in some texts in her studies was to keeps your friends close and your enemies closer.  So, Vogh decided there that she would try and work with this man

You are quite right.
Talin, I, and our friends have been trying to do right by Ptolus.
You speak of something coming? What has been seen?  I would like to work with you but secrecy is not going to be how we will succeed.   

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Helmut Itlestein
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Vogh was fairly certain her tactic was working. The older priest seemed to relax at bit at her final words.

“Ah. Excellent question. There are two happenings we are following. Repeated visions, auguries and research has led us to the belief runebearers are a key part to the doom of Ptolus. All of them must be removed from the city apropos. Secondly, there is something large moving toward Ptolus. Very large. But all attempts to divine the source are being foiled. What I can tell you, is this form is not of our world. We believe there is something in the heavens moving, changing, happenings occuring which none alive, even among the elves, have ever witnessed.”

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Vogh
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Listening to what Helmut had to say about what the Watchers had seen un their visions had given Vogh evn more questions.

I would like to know more about these visions and auguries you speak of.  I would also like to know what the doom is you speak of.   Vogh let Helmut answeer before asking her other questions, So, as far as the children are concerned you know that that is only opinion.  There are others that believe otherwise.  Do you tuikk killing the children or even sending them out of the city will stop whatever prophesy you speak of?
What if the runebearers are just now showing up to defeat the large thing that is coming our way?

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Helmut Itlestein
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Helmut reclined and scratched at his beard with some irritation. The older priest looked up in thought then leaned forward to engage once more.

“Miss Vogh, I hold nothing back from you. I present myself transparent. You should know that prophecy is never an exact science. It’s an art. A wizard casts a spell and a ball of fire erupts, but the stars, and the gods, are far less exact in their assistance. Auguries, communes, signs in the stars, the work of the Fate Weavers, and written prophecy have not told us exactly what is going to happen. I’ve been truthful with you. Vogh, Talin, if you will not assist, then at least, please, do not resist. My efforts and purpose is only to see the best life for all our city and her inhabitants. Help me!” High Priest Iltestein was either an incredibly gifted actor, or very genuine in his plea.

“Help me make sure no ill befalls. Harming anyone is distasteful, yet these runebearers have been shown to be instrumental in the doom which portends. At the least, they must be removed from the city. We have a list of all living runebearers currently in the city. Perhaps the combination of my word, and Friends of Castle Shard, would be enough to convince these families to depart Ptolus, for a time. Partner with me, or at least don’t oppose me.”

The group discussed a few things back and forth, with every question Helmut either had an answer, or seemed honestly not know. Finally, with all parties equally frustrated, Helmut stood and shook hands with the trio.

“Miss Vogh, if you still believe me to be anything less than completely earnest, have a cleric you trust subject me to a truth spell. I will do anything to see Ptolus’ future protected.”

With that the High Priest and his heavy shield guard automaton turned and departed the Ghostly Minstrel. By the look of those around the Minstrel’s common room, Vogh knew the rumor mill would already be spinning a mile a minute grinding out stories all over the city.

Belie left the room not long after Helmut, ascending the stairs in disguise only to return several minutes later as himself to join the bards and paladin.

“Well… What now?” He asked with a shrug and raised eyebrows.

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Vogh
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Vogh did have one question that was brewing in her head and so she had to ask, I know you have said that you are not responsible for the attacks on the runebearers we have protected thus far.  Let’s say I belive your honesty for now.
Who would want to have them killed? Even Phon the woman who bears your child was attacked at one point.  If you help me find out who is doing this I will consider helping you with figuring out a way to deal with the runebearers that is acceptable for all parties concerned.

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Helmut Itlestein
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“To which attacks are you referring?” Helmut asked, somewhat unconvincingly. Vogh’s response caught the Priest off guard and he quickly steeled his face to erase the surprise reaction, but not before the perceptive young woman caught his eye.

“Dullin Balacazar and Phon of course. Her child is a runebearer, is it not?”

Helmut stuttered a bit before he got his next words out. “How… How did you know Phon bore a runebearer? She doesn’t… I mean. How did you know that?”

Vogh revealed nothing with the look she returned the man’s question.

“Well, no matter. The Balacazar’s have no end to the list of their enemies, and I was under the impression Phon was merely accosted in an unfortunate mugging? I’m not sure how I could aid you in finding their accosters, or why you would care to protect a Balacazar, but I will do whatever I can to assist.”

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Vogh
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Vogh was smiling when she saw that Helmut was stumbling a bit with his words.  She had him a bit and for certain the next bit of news may make him squirm a bit more.

Phon’s mugging wasn’t just an ordinary mugging.  No, we did a bit of research and leg work to find out who was responsible.  We found out that the Pale dogs were hired by Toridan Cran.  We found in Toridan Cran’s ledger that he was hired by a Methul Watcher.  Vogh, of course, didn’t let the cat out of the bag quite yet as she wanted to see his reaction to the news and the name that she had just revealed.  Vogh had already put the name to Helmut as the name Methul incorporated the letters that spelled Helmut and Watcher was simple enough as Helmut was the High Priest of the Watchers of the skies.

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Helmut Itlestein
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“I’m not familiar with any of those names. I’ve heard of the Pale Dogs who plague the Warrens, for sure, and a mugging seems right down their dark alleys. This Cran is not someone I’ve ever heard of, nor Methul. Please proceed with your investigation and if you do find someone indeed hired Phon to be harmed, I will reward you with coin from my own pocket for their capture.”

Much to Vogh’s disappointment, the next information she dropped did not trip up the High Priest. Either he didn’t know that name, or he had simply regained his composure to a point that his face gave nothing away.

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Vogh
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Vogh thought she had him, but Helmut played it off pretty well if he was this Methul guy.

Okay, Vogh said as she took out a piece of parchment, ink bottle, and ink pen and wrote the 6 letters down.  She then took and Wrote another 6 letters.  One of the words spelled Helmut and the other Methul.  Vogh the struck off the H in both.  Then the e in both.  She did this till she was done with the t.  She then looked up to Helmut with a quizzical look.  How do you think it looks when all the letters match.  Not to mention the last name of Watcher?  I would assume that is what someone in the watchers is called.  I think it is time we start speaking the truth.  Or we could head to the Lothian high church now and we can do as you suggested and we can have one of the High Priests there cast a spell to see if you are lying.

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Helmut Itlestein
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“Miss Vogh. Do you honestly think I would use such a foolishly, simple pseudonym were I to engage these criminals? Why, a child could have unscrambled that anagram. More likely someone used such a simple subterfuge to implicate me in a crime. I have a long list of enemies who wish to maintain the status quo, politically. Phon and I took great pains to hide our relationship for exactly this reason, but it’s possible someone found us out. Regardless, as an act of goodwill, I will be happy to accompany you to a Lothian cleric for a truth spell.”

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Narrator
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I edited my post from above which had Helmut leave, you’ll need to do the same with yours.

Helmut stood with the others and made his way toward the door, his heavy shield guardian clunking after him, sending vibrations through the wooden floor. Outside an ornate carriage waited. Each wheel was not spoked traditionally, but had a representation of the curved dome and long telescope tube the Watchers of the Skies used to observe. Additionally, where a luggage rack would traditionally be situated on the back to accommodate chests, there was instead a thick, steel platform.

One driver stood from his seat, nodding to the High Priest, while another jumped down from the double seat and opened the door for Helmut. A young man, dressed with colors matching the Watcher’s, he sported a polished breastplate embossed with the Watcher logo and a short sword.

“These fine folks will be accompanying me. Miss Vogh will tell you our destination.” Easily less than twenty winters the man had a clean shaven and symmetrical face. His bright blue eyes looked at her in anticipation of an answer. “Ma’am?”

After Vogh instructed the driver and all four were seated the heavy platform’s use became apparent. The entire carriage squatted a bit as the several hundred pound shield guardian stepped onto its place and gripped the carriage. They could see its chest plate out the narrow, rear window.

Once the shield guardian was in place the driver released the brake with a clunk and leather snapping preceded the carriage beginning to move forward slowly. The drivers had to shout a couple times to get folks to make way in the crowded Runihan Square. Most called it Delver’s Square today, but nearly every Ptolusite knew the story of Abesh Runihan. Vogh could see his statue standing tall over the descending stair entrance to the undercity. Abesh had defeated the ghost-lich Kagrisos rose in 602 IA to cast a spell that would have spread a plague throughout the city. Runihan had struck him down, but it cost the hero his life. The parallels to Vogh’s, and her friends’, current situation was not lost on her.

Something tickled Vogh’s bard sense as she looked at the statue she had passed hundreds of times. She couldn’t remember the story exactly, but she knew Abesh had something to do with the Fate Weavers.

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Vogh
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Vogh had directed the carriage to head to the grand cathedral, she wanted to see if Sister Mara von Witten would be able to perform the spell for them to see if Helmut was lying.  Naturally, Vogh would have to explain why she needed the spell to be cast on a High Priest, but she figured that it was worth it in the end to find the truth of it all.

After explaining the need for the spell Vogh waits for Sister Mara von Witten to perform it while Vogh and Talin look on.

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Narrator
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Who sat next to Helmut?

The group made light conversation as the carriage moved along smoothly. Rich shock absorbers and plush seating made for a very comfortable ride. Once in the beautiful Temple District church after church passed outside the windows. Vogh and Talin became worried when Kal widened his eyes at one point. He went to speak up but was cut off by a word from the driver above.

“Apologies High Priest! We passed Sunrise Street, so used to going to the Observatory, we forgot to turn. No worries Sir, we will take Starchild Street and circle back.”

Kalerecent nodded in understanding and seemed to relax a bit, but the man kept his guard up, sitting stiff and turning all about with a firm grip on his scabbarded sword’s hilt that lay across his lap.

There was no need to worry as the carriage wound through the more narrow road back toward the Grand Cathedral. They turned past the very strange Temple of the Fifty-Three Gods of Chance. Vestiges of multiple deities were carved into the chaotic looking temple, adorned with all manner of symbols for luck and randomness like dice, bones, cards and more.

Finally they pulled before the beautiful St. Valien’s Cathedral.

The young man who greeted them also opened the door before the temple and allowed the group to exit. He scowled a bit when the High Priest was not given precedence to exit first when Kalerecent stepped out and strapped on his sword. Unable to hold the scowl in the face of the holy paladin the young man looked down and waited for the others to exit.

“I will accompany you High Priest, if you will permit.” Helmut nodded.

“Indeed, Gleven. Join us.” The priest waved him forward just as the carriage creaked with the adjusting weight of Helmut’s shield guardian stepping off its platform and fell in behind him.

“Lead the way Miss Vogh.” The priest seemed completely at ease, which made the bards tense, but what could the man do in such a high, holy place?

Kalerecent actually stepped forward to take the lead and waved off two Order of the Dawn guards at their approach. They saluted him, obviously knowing the well regarded warrior and said nothing as the group passed, despite their eyes going wide at seeing the towering construct clunking after the obvious High Priest.

Kal dispatched an interior guard to fetch the Sister and led them down a couple hallways to a room not unlike the one Vogh and Talin had waited for Linele’s resurrection. The paladin never sat, simply standing at parade rest with all the formality of a, well, paladin.

They were not kept waiting long before Sister Mara von Witten stepped into the room. Her eyes opened in surprise upon seeing High Priest Helmut inside with the bards. Mara blanched, then gave a shallow bow.

“High Priest Itlestein. Well… Welcome to St. Valien’s. Miss Vogh. Master Talin. Welcome. What brings this group together today and requesting my presence?”

When Vogh explained they wanted her to cast a spell of Truth her eyes went wide indeed.

“High Priest, you have agreed to this casting?” Despite Helmut being of a completely different church and priestly order, the position of High Priest was still an honored one.

“I have Sister.”

“Very well then. This is highly irregular.” The woman went into prayer, holding her Lothian Ankh holy symbol. She remained facing the standing priest. “It is done. We have several minutes until the prayer expires”

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Vogh
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As the group got into the carriage, Kal sat next to Helmut while Vogh and Talin sat across from them.  The talk was light and actually, Vogh had asked a little bit about the Republican movement, which Helmut was more than welcome to talk about.  It seemed to Vogh that Kal was quite nervous, or at least his actions seemed a little different than usual.

When they got to the Cathedral and Kal jumped out first it must have been something he was used to doing… or he just wanted out of the carriage.  Either way, Vogh watched as they advanced to the doors how effective Kal was and how much respect he garnered from other knights.  Vogh held her smile back so as not to have her thoughts be misconstrued for being happy about the situation, for she wasn’t at all.

Once Sister Mara von Witten stepped into the room Vogh watched everyone’s reactions.  Sister certainly didn’t expect to see the high priest, and Helmut was way too relaxed for comfort.

Vogh had explained about what was needed and after Helmut agreed, Sister Mara von Witten cast the two spells that would aid in detecting a lie.

Vogh bowed to Sister Mara and asked may I ask my questions now?  When the sister said yes, Vogh began.

High Priest Helmut what is the name of your order? Does Phon live at your house?  Did you have an affair with Phon while married?  Did you get her pregnant?  Are you aware that her child is a runebearer?  Do you know Toridan Cran?  Do you know who Methul Watcher is?  Are you Methul Watcher?  Did you have anything to do with Phon’s mugging?  Did you have anything to do with any runebearers being attacked?  Will you promise to not have anything to do with harming any runebearers from this point forward?  Do you trust me?

Vogh had paused for answers to each question before asking the next.

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Narrator
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High Priest Helmut what is the name of your order?

“The Watcher of the Skies.”

Does Phon live at your house?

“Yes.”

Did you have an affair with Phon while married?

“Yes.”

Did you get her pregnant?

“Yes.”

Are you aware that her child is a runebearer?

“Yes.”

Do you know Toridan Cran?

“No.”

Do you know who Methul Watcher is?

“No.”

Are you Methul Watcher?

“No.”

Did you have anything to do with Phon’s mugging?

“No.”

Did you have anything to do with any runebearers being attacked?

“No.”

Will you promise to not have anything to do with harming any runebearers from this point forward?

“If you will agree to help me get all of them out of the city, yes.”

Do you trust me?

“I’m getting there…” He finished with a small and friendly smile.

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Vogh
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Vogh turned to Sister Mara and asked the obvious question.  Sister Mara, what do you think about his answers?

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Chapter 4: The Banewarrens by Sister Mara von Witten
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“As far as I can tell Vogh, they were truthful. Keep in mind these are not infallible, but as far as my understanding, he spoke the truth each time.”

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Vogh
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Vogh thanked Sister Mara, I am so sorry to have to have brought you into this, but I needed to know whether or not he could be trusted.  I am sure you can understand given my recent experiences.  We will take our leave now.  I wish you a good day.

With the pleasantries aside and the group back into the carriage, Vogh said, I will assist you in getting the runebearers safely out of Ptolus only if you keep you word.  I assume you have a list of who they are or will be?  Just so you know if you don’t already.  We have some pressing things that can’t wait.  So, if you will allow us to complete a mission we are currently on then we will aid you as promised.  Vogh looked to her two companions then and nodded.  Each nodded in turn after Vogh had spoke.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Helmut agreed that he did and promised to send the list to them at the Ghostly Minstrel if they so choose. If they didn’t want to wait then he offered them a ride to his temple where he could make a list immediately to send with them.

As another act of good faith Helmut even offered his carriage to return them to the Minstrel after their business was done. Vogh, Talin and Kal entered the common room and Vogh approached Tellith when the young woman waved at her.

“Miss Vogh, you have a note delivered by carrier.” The red haired lady handed over a parchment sealed with the Rogue Moon symbol. A simple letter from Jessie let her know that Lipthsu and his kin had been living in luxury on their spoils for some time but they were ready to make another run for more items to sell.

Back in their room a wooden box sat on the bed. It was well crafted with brass hinges and a simple hook latch which would keep it shut, but was not a locking mechanism. Covering the wood were symbols of every manner of food imaginable. Fruits, vegetables, meats, breads and more overlapped one another in a tapestry denoting abundance. Clearly this was the Field Provisions magical box Vogh had requested of the Inverted Pyramid.

Belie followed after them in the same disguise he had worn downstairs during their meeting.

“Pretty hard to follow you all when you disappear into some back room. Is everything well? I tailed you to the big church and then the little one of Helmut’s. He let you take his carriage back here? That was mighty nice of him…” The rogue made the sarcasm in his voice obvious at the end, not having been privy to the exchange shared with Sister Mara.

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Vogh
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Vogh decided to get the note later since they were all going to be heading back to the Banewarrens shortly.  As the carriage arrived at the Minstrel and the three walked in and received the note from Lipthsu Vogh almost cracked up.  So many things to do and no time to do it.  If she went down into the banewarrens for a few weeks, Lipthsu may find another helper and that just wouldn’t do, she thought to herself.  She could hold off on the banewarrens for another 2-3 days.  Guess she would have to talk about this with the others.  She thanked Tellith for the message and they went upstairs.

When she returned to her room she saw the magical box laying on her bed and knew immediately what it was based on the look of the item.  The box was built with exquisite craftsmanship and she could feel the power of it.  This will help us in many ways, she said to the others.  Now then, we have a decision to make.  I just got word that Lipthsu is ready for another shipment of the magical items to the city.  It only took us a short time to make the transaction last time, but we have the everpresent threat of the banewarrens as well.  What would you all like to do?  Vogh knew that Talin would do whatever she decided so it was up to the others to make a decision.

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Belie
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“I would far prefer traveling the open air to going back into an insanely dangerous underground death trap. Honestly though, I’m worried about the monster bastards getting into the banewarrens while we are away.” Belie huffed in frustration at his own words then thought out loud some more.

“But why the dung should we even care? What’s going to happen if these Pack bastards get in there? Why is that OUR problem?”

He threw up his hands in angst as he paced, still thinking verbally.

“How much did you earn on that last run? Could we make just as much? No offense Kal. Anthus. But it makes sense your organizations have a stake in this. Why are little old ‘we’ the ones after this? All this gear is worthless if we die in the most evil place in the world…?! I’ve got more gold, nine hells, platinum, than 10 generations of my family combined. Why not tell the IP and the Church we ain’t going back down there?! Yeah, let’s go take a leisurely stroll to sell some magic items for some goblins instead of risking life and limb down there!”

😀 The DM PC is arguing with the course the DM wants to take… haha

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Deacon Havenhold
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Deacon was thinking about the possibility of expanding his spellbook. That was an idea that delighted him, however not only would they have to wait for the transaction of the magical items he’d have to procure the spells he’d like to add while also taking time to transcribe them. That might be time they did not have at this time.

Still lightening their load might make room for more magical goodies. “Well how full are our packs. Going back in without a way to retrieve more items might be counterproductive. I’d love to expand my spellbooks but I’m not sure we could spare that much time.” he replied to Vogh’s inquiry.

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Bharash
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Bharash didn’t really have a strong opinion either way. Though Deacon made a good point if they had sufficient room for another delve into the dungeon, he didn’t want to be the pack mule dragging the next haul out behind him if they filled up the packs.

“How long is it between these runs? I mean if they run them weekly we can just wait til next week can’t we? If not perhaps we should do it to lighten our current load. It would be nice to shop as well to get some extras though I can’t think of anything right immediately except I’d like a pair of boots like that one guy had.” Bharash offers his opinion.

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Julia Graymantle
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Julia was the soft spoken one of the bunch.  She had been with Deacon and Bharash long enough to know that following them around would ensure that she was using her goodly Oracle powers of healing, for they often fell into trouble.  The Banewarrens was no different than any other dungeon she has been in before.. well almost..  there was definitely way more evil in the warrens.

I am with them Vogh.  I think heading to the warrens is the best option.  As you said, there is no telling when the Pactlords will return.

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Vogh
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Vogh had heard enough from everyone to make her decision. Okay grab your things and dont worry about rations.  We have a new item that is supposed to be able to feed us till we die.  Let’s just hope that death doesn’t come too early for us.

With the decision made, everyone gathered their gear and they headed back to the warrens.  G once again stayed out of the inner warrens to make sure he could open the lever door to let them back in.  Unlike before though, this time he hid for if Vogh was right, the Pactlords would be coming sometime…

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Talin
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Talin spoke up as well, he addressed Belie and his questions, We made almost close to 50,000 gold on the last run we did with Lipthsu.  It was a grand haul for sure.  We don’t know if they will have something like that again or more.  It was an easy mission and one that Talin would love to do again, but he also had a personal beef against these Pactlords and he would rather head down to the banewarrens to stop them then have more gold in his pockets.

Belie remember we will earn about 50k again for sealing up the banewarrens.  So, you could consider the warrens as a run.  That is not too mention if we find anything else down there as well…

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Belie
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The Rogue grumbled, “No good if we’re dead.” But he was not going to abandon his new friends. Recently Belie had been on the opposite side of this argument with his long time travel companion, Jamir and their new friend Anthus. Belie had wanted to return to an area where some gnomes were enslaved by what they thought was a lich, but turned out to be a rakshasha in disguise. Belie refused to leave the gnomes to their fate, despite Jamir and Anthus refusing to return. That situation was the one that actually led Belie to Vogh and Talin in the first place. The irony was not lost on the young man. No, he wouldn’t abandon these friends. Besides, they needed him the most with all the traps that crazy old man put down there.

“Well, you would all probably die without me, and I can’t have that, so let’s get this godsforsaken place sealed and take a long vacation…”

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Belie told the group he had been doing some shopping the day before and was anxious to try his hand at some trapsmithing he had been practicing. Vogh penned a quick response to Jessie explaining that they simply didn’t have time at the moment due to pressing, and dangerous, business. There was no time to find out if the Rogue Moon lady, or the goblins, would be willing to wait but it was a chance they simply had to take at this time.

The trio met up with the bards and rogue, then they picked up Kalerecent the Lothianite Paladin and Avach the Inverted Pyramid sword and spell slinger to head down into possibly the most evil, and dangerous, place in all Ptolus: The Banewarrens.

Split between two carriages, as the weather itself seemed to understand the solomness of their task and was pouring water upon them from the heavens, they arrived quickly at the manor they had entered several times to date. In they went, down to the wine cellar, and beneath the earth once more. Belie was on high alert, moving ahead with Bharash not far behind, aiding with his dark vision. The rogue was checking for traps and anything new that might have been left for their detriment. Vogh kept her eyes enhanced to see any magic auras. Finally, the troop stood before the massive Sealed Door that entered the outer reached of the warrens catacombs.

Geristranomos moved forward, revealing the hidden panel and spinning the combination dial with inhuman speed and accuracy until the lock clicked open. Kalerecent insisted on taking lead and moved forward with his Falchion raised, glowing with holy power. The paladin was not quiet in his magical full plate, but he was the most heavily armored.

Like a well oiled machine, the group moved through the hallways they had learned and arrived without incident inside the large, rotating Plug Control room, gingerly crossing over the damaged floor. Geristranomos fussed after the destroyed trap remarking, “I simply must fix that apropos.” The construct efficiently moved up the ladder, adjusted a lever, descended to press a button, rode the pivoting pillar and repeated the process in the required order. Once more the ground began to shake as the huge “plug” raised into the ceiling which allowed passage deeper into the warrens.

G told Vogh he would close the plug once more upon their entry, but promised to reopen it daily to check if they needed to leave. Across the damaged floor, G disabled the freezing trap area to allow them passage, reactivating it once they were through, into the blue room – which now had bloodied and murky water in both glass tubes – through the secret passage and into the vaults they went.

Kal jerked his head toward the wall of force to see G pounding on the magical barrier, shouting a warning. He quickly moved forward in a defensive position, followed by the rest.

“By the gods! One of the vaults is opened!”

Vogh and the rest could easily see the first vault door in this deeper section was indeed opened. As Kal moved around the corner the group’s hearts sunk as they realized all three Vault Doors in this hallway stood open.

The first was a 20 foot square room which had a simple, stone block pedestal in the middle of the room. Unfortunately the column sat empty.

The second room likewise was 20 feet square but had nothing save an inset shelf cut into the stone of the south wall. This nich too, stood empty.

Finally, the third room mirrored the first two yet had no pedestal or shelf inside. Instead, on the floor were shards of shattered glass.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
As they checked out the rooms, Vogh was worried about not only what was inside the room but also what opened the rooms.  She had no idea at this time about any of it.  So it seems that someone came down inside.  It was curious to Vogh because she knew that Deacon had trapped the entrance with an alarm spell which should have warned him if someone had come through.  Vogh didn’t know where he set the trap so didn’t know where to check for the magic of the trap.

We had better get moving cause if they just came through then they may still be looking for a way inside to the vault door.  Vogh said to the others.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
“Whoever it was didn’t come through the door and didn’t trip my alarm spell.” Deacon tells Vogh “Do we know what these vaults may have contained? Perhaps someone more adept at it should look around for clues for who might of penetrated them.”

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Bharash
———————————————————–
Bharash seems to shiver with anticipation. “I believe conflict is inevitable in this situation. I do hope that whoever it is has not left us any more nasty surprises in traps along the way.”

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Talin
———————————————————–
Talin didn’t like the look of it either.  If what Deacon says is true, the pactlords teleported past the alarm and probably to the spot where we fought them in battle.  Deacon there is no way to know what was inside these vaults for we, of course, didn’t open them.  I think we should just press on.  Talin said as he looked over at Kal and Vogh and lastly the others.

I suggest we use our resources to make sure there isn’t any magical traps or anything else magical that was left behind.

With that Talin cast a detect magic to look in each of the rooms as they pass.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Talin is right, we should keep going.  Vogh saw Talin cast his spell and knew what he had cast.  He would be able to see magic auras now.  Vogh did so likewise and then suddenly she too could see magical things.  She began to move to the rooms and then into the room where they fought the willow wisp.

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Belie
———————————————————–
“I will be checking thoroughly. Talin, keep your eyes peeled for magic and give me a heads up.” The rogue requested as he readied himself to begin moving forward. His new magical shield floated before him while he started searching around the rooms entrances and with Talin’s all clear, inside.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Nothing revealed itself to be dangerous inside the rooms. Likely the danger from the rooms was now released, or taken. “Keep an eye out for invisible, blue trolls that appear and disappear at will…” The rogue quipped sarcastically, simultaneously looking around with his rapier at the ready.

Everyone moved together, through the will-o-wisp den, up to the door. There was writing on the door in a strange language, using red ink, or possibly blood.

Secret Roll: Belie rolled 27 using 1d20+10.  Appraise.
Secret Roll: Belie rolled 27 using 1d20+13.  Perception.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Vogh noticed the writing was magical and immediately warned everyone not to read the writing, “There’s a good chance it’s an explosive rune, and reading it will detonate an explosion.” Thus, Belie averted his eyes and focused on the door for any mundane traps. Finding none the rogue opened it and ascended the stair with Kalerecent hot on his heels.

The paladin, having never been in this part of the warrens was awestruck as he looked upon the magnificent pegasus statue. He even knelt before the regal creature and prayed for a moment. Likewise he knelt and prayed before Danar’s statue, hoping the man’s soul found respite in death.

Belie searched about the place and commented that the secret door they came out of, after navigating the water filled room, was shut and locked once more. “I cannot open it from this side. Unfortunately I think that might mean having to swim through that accursed room again. Um… Guys…” Flattening himself against the wall, Belie peaked around the corner and gestured for someone to join him.

Anyone who closed the distance heard the same screaming and yelling as before, but most unsettling was that the voice was far louder, and to cap off the fear Belie whispered. The door is open…

Echoing down the halls they could hear. “Release me! I demand you release me! Hellfire and Damnation Danar, I will leave now! You can banish me to my rest and let me leave this plane! DANAR!!!”

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Vogh
———————————————————–
WHen Vogh heard the much louder screams coming from down the corridor where the moaning and muffled screams were before Vogh knew that the door had been opened.  Her and Talin moved up that way and at the same time Vogh cast a spell to aid her friends.

Time for a few buffs I am thinking, she called back to Deacon and Julia and Talin.

Cast Elation:
Affected creatures gain a +2 morale bonus to effective Strength and Dexterity, and their speed increases by +5 feet. 9 round duration

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Julia Graymantle
———————————————————–
Julia already had her shield other spell activated on Bharash as per her usual, but when Vogh had called for some buffs Julia felt the arcane spell fall over her from Vogh.  Julia grabbed her Lothian symbol and prayed for a spell to protect her friends from evil.

Cast Protection from evil, Communal
+2 deflection bonus to AC and a +2 resistance bonus on saves. 10 rounds duration.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Belie and Kalerecent moved forward, Kal out front until they arrived at the opened Vault Door. A dead goblin lay just inside the door, less than two paces away. A long, narrow room stretched north from the door. Stairs on the left side of the far end led to a higher area beyond. The upper half of a suit of full plate armor – the cuirass, vambraces, and gorget – hung from a black chain over a wide pit in the farthest section of the chamber. A tattered red surcoat hung about the armor, as well as various bits of a chainmail hauberk.

A ragged face appeared where the head of a person would be if someone were wearing the armor. The face appeared ancient, ill-used, and contemptuous. After regarding the duo from his prison the translucent mouth shouted at them in an otherworldly voice. “Who are you?! Where is Danar?! Where are the monstrous bastards who opened the damnable door?! Release me! I am ready to leave this wretched place! Tell Danar I will go peaceably now!”

The strange apparition rattled the chains which held his armor, causing the whole contraption to sway about over the pit.

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Belie
———————————————————–
Belie knelt and checked around the floor, looking for any manner of traps. He was thorough in his search of the floor and door and surround. He even inspected the goblin’s body from affair, looking for signs of death but he saw no wounds nor blood which suggested what caused its demise. It was possible whatever killed him was beneath his body.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
Deacon used his lesser rod of extend to cast Mage Armor on himself while Belie was checking the floor for traps.

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Talin
———————————————————–
When Talin moved up and looked into the room he saw the head above the armor and the goblin on the floor.  Quickly Talin grabbed his grappling hook and rope and swung it out to hook the goblin so he could pull him back to see what killed the thing.

Once the goblin was back on this side of the wall he turned him over to see if he could see the reason for death.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Before Talin even got the goblin to the door he figured out what killed the little beast. While dragging the body across the seemingly normal floor sparks of lightning shocked the body and caused dead muscles to twitch. When the bard rolled over the poor wretch its front was blackened and charred, giving off an awful stink.

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Talin
———————————————————–
Talin called back to Vogh, there is a spirit that is suspended over a big pit that is wanting to be free!  I don’t think we should mess with it.  The room floor is trapped with electricity.  I think we should head the other way!

Seeing that Avach was at the other hallway he called, what do you see down that way?

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Julia Graymantle
———————————————————–
Julia moves forward to see how long the goblin has been dead for.

Take 10 for a 21 heal check.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Julia could tell the goblin had barely even begun to decay, so it was unlikely the thing was dead even a full day yet. Possible mere hours, but the earliest hours were the hardest to tell

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Bharash
———————————————————–
Bharash was happy to go where the others wanted, he was not to keen on the idea of walking with full plate into an electrical trap “Yeah the other way sounds better.”

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
“Usually the trapped way is the correct way, besides this place is full of traps, the other way may have even more dangerous traps.” Deacon cautions.

Deacon will try to take a look without getting on the electrical part and see if he can spot a cut off lever or anything that might disable the trap. Though being that he’s not a thief he probably won’t see anything worth a shot he figures.

00:16, Today: Deacon Havenhold rolled 29 using 1d20+10.  Perception.

If he spots such he’ll use the mage hand ability provided by his cloak in an attempt to disable the device.

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Belie
———————————————————–
With Deacon’s help Belie was able to figure out the device and together they got it disabled, they believed. There was only one way to figure out if the electricity was gone…

Belie rolled 25 using 1d20+18.  Perception (traps)
Belie rolled 28 using 1d20+23.  Disable Dev. (traps)

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Avach Ur-Tesstrin
———————————————————–
Avach peeked around the corner, holding up a torch to illuminate the hallway. He spoke back to the group, softly. “It seems there is another dead goblin at the end of the hallway, but the door which led deeper, hidden in the wall, seems to be shut once more.”

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh heard the exchange between Talin and Avach.  When Avach said that the secret door was once more closed, she knew that they would once again have to get wet and got through the water chamber.

Oh wonderful, seems we need to go through the water area again.  Let’s check out all the areas quickly before heading that way.

As long as Deacon and the others followed the group went up past the girillons and to the end to make sure nothing was there before returning down and finding the secret lever and then into the hallways beyond and to the water area to pull the one lever again.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
The group was able to quickly retrace their steps. Belie once again enacted the magic of his boots and scaled the wall to release the lever which opened the secret door into the water themed room. Together Belie and Talin went into the transition room, pulled the levers and swam across the cube of water to the far room matching the first. There they continued to hold their breath and breathed deep when the transparent door had closed and the room drained enough for them to have space once more.

Together the two men pulled the chain in the ceiling, then descended through the still open trap door. They followed the narrow and wet passage to the far ladder and room. Out they popped into the Pegasus statue main area and everyone was ready to head deeper into the Banewarrens. As a courtesy Talin cast prestidigitation to dry he and Belie out.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
As Talin came out of the secret door with Belie and used a spell to clean both of them, Vogh caught his eye.  The secret door is now open, let’s get moving!  We have no idea how far they are in front of us and we don’t want them opening too much.  We may need to fight the air elemental again so not everyone should move forward into the main room.

Deacon, I wish there was a way for you to speak with the elemental and tell it we are friends.  Certainly would help.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
“There is a spell that would enable me to, however I have yet to acquire that spell and I have not yet learned the elemental languages. Therefore I do not believe I’ll be able to communicate with it.” Deacon responds to the inquiry.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
As soon as Kalerecent moved the goblin body off to the side, the group knew today was not their day. Inside the sound of rushing wind could be heard and air was whistling out the narrow door opening. Peeking inside it was also clear all three vault doors in the long hallway had been opened.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Belie, We need to tie up Bharash and send him in to kill that thing again.  I will provide him the strength and power to get it done.  Can you tie him up before he goes?  That way we can pull him back if we need too.  Vogh asked Belie as she looked over to Bharash as well.

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Belie
———————————————————–
Belie nodded and retrieved his magical rope from his magical backpack. Holding the seemingly normal coil he mentally commanded the cord to wrap snugly around Bharash’s waist and tie itself securely.

“He’s a big one, give me a hand.” Belie winked at the dragonborn good naturedly. The rogue wanted some extra help holding the length to ensure Bharash wasn’t swept away. Kalerecent was happy to grab just behind Belie.

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Talin
———————————————————–
Talin jumped in as well and nudged Avach to grab hold as well so that if something went wrong they could easily pull Bharash back.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
With Bharash secured and with at least forty feet of rope to move the big dragon-man could step inside the door. Once more he spotted the air body of a huge elemental. The living being of air had not yet turned into the raging cyclone they faced before, but already it was bellowing at his presence.

Bharash’s keen eyes saw the bodies of several goblins laying lifeless and bloodied on the floor between himself and the elemental. The dragonborn also caught that the screen which was once in the room lay smashed and tattered.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
“Why don’t I just cast the communal spider climb on him that I’ve got memorized, surely it would be easier for him to walk on the walls or the ceiling than for you to attempt to pull him back against the current?” Deacon suggests.

09:57, Today: Deacon Havenhold rolled 6 using 1d20+5.  Initiative.

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Bharash
———————————————————–
“I like Deacon’s plan, rope might get in way of combat limit my mobility” Bharash says.

09:58, Today: Bharash rolled 24 using 1d20+10.  Initiative.

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Belie
———————————————————–
Belie shrugged and uncurled the rope from Bharash. “No scales off my hide.” The rogue joked with the dragonborn. “Scream like a little girl if you need assistance. Any other screams and we’ll assume you’re well…” Belie truly chuckled at that point and gave a full smile to Bharash.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
“It’s a communal spell, there is no need for him to go alone, the rest of the fighters could help him as well.” Deacon explains. “There is more than one wall to walk on and the ceiling.”

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Vogh
———————————————————–
With Deacon casting his spell of spider climb on everyone, Vogh and Talin followed in after Bharash making sure to get on opposite sides so that they could do the most damage.  Vogh also began to weave her battle dance into her moves which for those watching they were boldened with the power of her Dragonfire.

20:27, Today: Vogh rolled 11,9,14,20 using 1d20+7,1d20+7,1d20+9,1d20+3.  Vogh/Talin/Belie/Julie.  Initiatives.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Air Elemental has a 20. Tie goes to the PC, Julie. Bharash has first go at 24.

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Julia Graymantle
———————————————————–
Julia stays back and prepares herself to aid her friends with any healing needed.

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Bharash
———————————————————–
Bharash will use the spider climb and approach the western wall and climb along it. He was beginning to think the rope was no more encumbering than this wall crawling, still it was nice to see someone do something different.

He would move to be just beside the elemental and then attack with his sword. He could only get one attack in since he was moving this moment, he hoped in the next moments one of his friends would take up a side opposite him.

01:31, Today: Bharash rolled 26,15 using 1d20+13,1d8+8.  Attack and Damage.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
Deacon will use Summon Monster III and summon a celestial electric eel to attack the Water Elemental. He’ll summon it where I drew a white ziggly line.

He doesn’t go until 6 initiative (this assumes this isn’t the round I have to cast the communal spider climb)

Deacon Casts Summon Monster III
Celestrial Dire Bat attacks

Link to stats: https://www.d20pfsrd.com/besti…ed-creature-dire-bat

He is augmented.

01:42, Today: Deacon Havenhold rolled 12,4,17,6 using 1d20+5,1d6+3,1d20+0,1d6.
That’s Bite, Bite Damage, Tail (which is a touch attack), and Tail Damage (electrical).

I thought was water not air, strike the eel…now a dire bat

03:52, Today: Deacon Havenhold rolled 20,8 using 1d20+7,1d8+7.  Celestial Dire Bat .

 

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Initiative: Round 1
Bharash 24 (attacked)
Julie 20 (delay)
Deacon (summoned bat)
Belie 14 (attacked)
Vogh 11
Talin 9
Kal 9
Avach 7

Bharash moved forward, sticking to the wall for some reason, and slashed at the elemental. The brute roared as it seemed part of his air swished away with B’s magical sword swing. Unfortunately, Deacon’s bat was ineffective as it tried to strike, but seemed not even to catch air.

OOC: Get it? He couldn’t hit the air elemental… haha 😀 #BadDMhumor

Belie enacted the magic of his boots, rooting himself to the floor with the same effect cast on the other members of the group. The rogue stabbed his magical rapier into the living air, but it seemed not to even register his thin blade, until fire raced around it’s form like Bharash’s attack as well. The beast let out an otherworldly howel which sounded like wind through the trees.

Belie rolled 30,5 using 1d20+13,1d6+4.

Belie rolled 18 using 5d6.  Fire Dmg from Vogh’s Bard-uh-stuff.
Narrator, on behalf of Bharash, rolled 13 using 5d6.  Fire Dmg from Vogh’s Bard-uh-stuff.

OOC: JR: You’re at +5 to Atk/Dmg from Vogh’s Inspire and you get 5d6 extra dmg from her Dragon Fire Inspiration she said she was activating.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Vogh moved forward towards the air elemental and moved opposite Bharash so that they could flank the large elemental.  Once she hit her spot she turned and slashed across at it.  Flame trailed the slash of her blade as it cut into the air.

19:39, Today: Vogh rolled 30,24,14 using 1d20+21,1d8+19,5d6.  Attack and Damage.

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Talin
———————————————————–
Talin came forward opposite Vogh as she turned.  He joined Bharash only Talin was on the ground and not on the wall.  He too slashed at the air elemental with his burning blade.

19:43, Today: Talin rolled 25,21,17 using 1d20+19,1d8+18,5d6. Attack and Damage.

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Kalerecent
———————————————————–
Kalerecent charges with his falchion waving in the air before him.  AS he nears he takes an overhead cop through the air elemental.

19:48, Today: Kalerecent rolled 29,18,19 using d20+22,2d4+13,5d6.  attack and damage.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Before Avach even had a chance to step forward and swing, the coalesced air simply puffed out of existence with a roar, then a whisper like a slowly escaping fart. Finally the group could take stock of the three open vault doors, and the two dead goblins.

The first door opened on another 20-foot-square room with a single, marble pedestal in the middle of the room. This was empty like the others. The second door was opened, but not empty. A sphere, easily ten feet in diameter shimmered as it floated in the similarly sized room. Within the orb, a greenish mist roiled and seethed as if stirred by some powerful air current. Detect magic reveals a Force Evocation effect of Moderate power. Finally, the third door was opened into an empty room.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Once the air elemental was dispatched Vogh quickly looked over the rooms that they had passed.  There were more banes that were released and Vogh hoped that they were creatures they may have to fight later on.  When she peered at the whirling green mist within the force field that was containing it, Vogh worried what it was.  The sphere was too large for them to take with them, and Vogh had to hope that nothing would release whatever it was.  She closed the door once more leaving it behind them as she told the others to move forward.

When we get to that intersection lets make haste in case the forbiddance spell is still active.  I want to get to the door as fast as well can with our spells still active.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
I can send the dire bat there and see if he can cross. Deacon suggests.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
That is a sound idea Deacon.  Send him off.  Vogh replies to Deacon as they move forward past the shreaded screen.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Belie moved forward and checked the very well hidden door worked into the wall just beyond the now destroyed screen. He pronounced the door safe to open so Kalerecent stepped forward to work the portal. As soon as the door opened Vogh immediately sensed the minds of several beings in the room, one of which she recognized as the mind flayer!

Two goblins stood on their side of the forbiddance spell while the illithid stood on the far side, chin tentacles waggling in frustration at the group’s presence. Vogh could tell there were at least two more beings just around the corner nearest the Sealed Door. Strange to the bard was the absence of thought seeming to come from the minds other than the illithid.

Both goblins turned with blank looks on their faces and charged Kalerecent with short spears. The paladin barely had to move to deflect their passionless stabs with his shield.

Keep same initiative, top of round.

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Julia Graymantle
———————————————————–
When Kalerecent opens the door and gets attacked by two goblins, Julia spots them and rushes forward towards the door.  Not knowing what else is out there she waits to cast anything.

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Belie
———————————————————–
Posting Out of Turn

Belie dove forward, past Kalerecent and came up in a roll behind the goblins. The rogue’s rapier dove through the back of the little beast’s chest and exploded through the front. Blood pumped down the thin blade as the heart ceased pumping with steel piercing the muscle.

Belie rolled 35 using 1d20+18 ((17))

Crit! With 5d6 sneak attack damage, and 5d6 fire damage and 2d6+4!

49 points of damage! To something that had maybe 10…

Openly weeps… haha 😀

===========================================================
Narrator
———————————————————–
Initiative: Round 2
Bharash 24 (watiing)
Julie 20 (delay)
Deacon (waiting)
Belie 14 (attacked)
Vogh 11
Talin 9
Kal 9
Avach 7

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Bharash
———————————————————–
Bharash will charge the goblins (someone already moved me there) attacking with one of his blades.

07:33, Today: Bharash rolled 19,20,20 using 1d20+16,1d8+13,5d6.  Attack and Damage.

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Deacon Havenhold
———————————————————–
Deacon moves up to get a better look and has his bat move thru the goblins in the air and over to the right of them.

07:35, Today: Deacon Havenhold rolled 25,14 using 1d20+7,1d8+7.  Dire Bat attacking 2nd goblin.

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Narrator
———————————————————–
Both goblins lay dead. The group feels a mental blast roll over them, which they’ve felt before, but the Inverted Pyramid’s loaned item did its work, and none of them were stunned.

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Julia Graymantle
———————————————————–
When Bharash had charged and killed the last goblin Julia made her move to the hallway.  When she saw the mind flayer down the hall she hoped that the banner the Inverted Pyramid had given them worked.  When she felt the power of the mind flayer wash over her Julia called to the others, its the mind flayer again.  He just tried to stun me with his blast, thankfully I was able to mentally defend against its power.  The group had talked about how to deal with the mind flayer and that they would fake that they could be affected by the mind flayer.

Julia then grabbed her holy symbol and called to Lothian.  She summoned the power to anchor the mind flayer so that it wasn’t able to just get away so easily.  Julia could feel that her spell took effect but didn’t let on to the others or the mind flayer either.  The green ray of light hit the mind flayer and seemed to coalesce around the creature before dissipating.

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Vogh
———————————————————–
Upon hearing Julia call out that she was just hit with the mind blast from the mind flayer Vogh motioned to Talin and Avach to move forward and into the hallway.  Vogh was ready to charge through the forbidden area and accept the backlash that it would give to her.

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Kalerecent
———————————————————–
Kalerecent too felt the power from the mind flayer wash over him but as he steeled his mind he shook it and looked down to the mind flayer.  You will pay squid head!  Kalerecent with blood from the goblin still quite fresh on his blade moved down the hallway towards the mind flayer.

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Talin
———————————————————–
Talin and Avach moved up towards the hallway but waited on Deacon to move into it before they left the room completely.

To aid everyone he cast Good Hope on all. +2 to almost all things..