Tales from Elrond

An Uneasy Alliance

After more rest and recuperation after yet another bout with the undead wraith, Az’Al’Bani, Surina, Takashi, Magnara and Lester again head toward the cisterns. Enroute they encounter the wraith yet again but this time things seem different. Az’Al’Bani offers a temporary truce to join in an alliance to further both group’s goals.

He explains that he has the key to an ancient Minotaur site called the Court of Bones, which is hidden in the cisterns. In return for his assistance in clearing out the spider infestation in the cisterns, the party will assist him in locating the door to the Court and help him retrieve a crystal that lies inside. Az’Al’Bani explains that this is an ideal situation for the others- he will leave this place once he has this crystal, his foul presence will no longer be an issue, and Erathis’ will will be done. Surina agrees and the others reluctantly agree as well, wary of the wraith’s true intentions. D506A4D8-E7C2-419D-822D-863714D8FC38.jpegAz’Al’Bani appears true to his word and he helps the party rid the cisterns of the phase spiders. His ability to surprise the spiders as he emerges from the stone walls and suck the life from them is a great benefit in the battles. The party makes good progress and seem to fare better than in their previous attempts. Even in their toughest battle in what appears to be the heart of the spider infestation, in which Surina and Lester go down (paralyzed by poison), seems only slightly more difficult than the previous ones. With their bags full of scavenged treasure found on the web strewn floor of the spiders’ lair, the party heads toward the final area of the cisterns and it is here that disaster strikes.

Walking into the lair of two basilisks, Magnara and Lester are barely able to fight off the effects of the creatures’ petrifying gaze. Unfortunately, Takashi is not so lucky and in the process of notching an arrow he is turned to stone. The rest of the party is able to vanquish the beasts but lack the magic to revert their friend back to normal. With his alchemy background, Lester salvages some of the fluids from the basilisks’ gullet in the hopes of later creating a potion to save his half-brother. B6925D5E-4F39-4E67-A8B5-92DA3E4EDAD9.jpegCoincidently, Az’Al’Bani can sense the door to the Court of Bones is near and leaving Takashi behind with the intention of returning for him later, the party finds it after searching a nearby tunnel. Using his key, Az’Al’Bani opens the ancient lock and the portal opens to a bone-filled tomb with the depiction of a large bull skull embossed on the floor, bone-covered pillars and two mummified Minotaur skeletons sitting in thrones on a raised platform, one of which is clutching a large crystal.

Az’Al’Bani makes for the crystal and snatches it from the grasp of the Minotaur mummy. With this act the tomb comes alive with an ill-wind and the rising of two Minotaur skeletons from the piles of bones, as well as ghastly spectral figures. Some of the undead flee after their initial assault when Magnara calls upon the holy power of Bahamut but what follows is a challenging battle that gets even harder when Az’Al’Bani’s opponents are vanquished and he flees from the Court with the crystal, leaving the rest of the party to fend for themselves. 323AC239-4F86-400B-9D44-435CC937FB60.jpeg Desperate to survive, it takes Magnara, Lester and Surina‘s remaining magic and might to destroy their foes. Battered and exhausted, but alive and victorious, they search the Court and are somewhat rewarded from the ordeal when they find a hidden compartment in one of the thrones that contains some gold and a spell book. Now they must find a way to cure Takashi.

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Severius' Journal- "Assasult on the Sacred Stone Monastery"

I do not have much time to write, for I fear that the enemy is making preparations to root us out and kill us for our intrusion into their home. My comrades are bloodied and battered and few of us have any unspent magickal power left. I only have the barest gifts of Gorm at my disposal, the majority of my powers having been spent in the massive seemingly never-ending melee against waves of Sacred Stone Monks which immediately assailed us when we made entrance into their monastery and the later challenging engagement against the gatekeepers of the monastery’s subterranean level, a group of orogs accompanied by an ogre.

Reflecting back now on the tense discussions we had after Allegro returned from his night time scouting of the Sacred Stone Monastery, I believe that we have chosen the correct path to find the Delegation and strike out against evil. These monks seem to worship the same symbol of allegiance that we found as the insignia on the uniforms wore by the bugbears found in the shallow graves near the Delegation battle site in the hills. Their obvious reluctance to engage us in conversation about the Delegation and their recently revealed associations with the foul and evil Dwarven race known as the Duergar shows that there is more than enough suspicion to breach their sanctuary and investigate.

So far we have not found any of the Delegation here or clues to the monks’ involvement but we have only begun to explore the sub level. The current state of my party cannot be ignored and without time to recuperate, which I do not believe we will have at the moment while in the domain of the enemy, I fear we will be hard-pressed to emerge victorious from another major engagement. I trust in Gorm’s wisdom though. His guidance has protected me thus far and I have no doubt he will see me through this test of faith.

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Lesser of Two Evils?

Lester, Magnara and Surina return to the Seven-Pillared Hall. Figuring that Takashi is not going anywhere in his current state as a stone statue, they take their time getting some much needed rest and recuperation. Lester purchases alchemy supplies from Gendar, and with the biologicals he extracted from the Basilisks, intends to brew a potion to transform Takashi back to his normal state. A conversation with the Dwarven owner of the Deepgem Company, Ulthand Deepgem, and appealing to his previous positive interactions with Takashi as a worshipper of the Dwarven goddess Ulsan secures a space in his holdings for Lester to construct a make-shift lab to go about his work.

Heading out the following day with two vials of hope in hand, Lester and Magnara make their way back to the cisterns they find Takashi as they left him. After Magnara asking for Bahamut’s blessing, Lester administers one of the transmutation potions on Takashi and are relieved when Takashi’s natural form is restored. After catching their friend up on what happened after he was turned to stone, the party heads out of the cisterns back towards the Seven-Pillared Hall.

E8E9A092-C549-4511-A191-E7774ABE8C9C.jpegEnroute, they cross paths with a tiefling warlock named Meredith who is in the service of Asmodeus and leading a small force of devils and warriors against the demon worshippers of Yeenoghu who have taken residence in the aptly named Well of Demons- an ancient area of the Thunderspire Labyrinth that was coincidentally used during the rule of the Minotaurs to worship the demon lord Baphomet. Meredith and Lester converse at length about the individual tasks they have been assigned by their patron and Lester learns that his charge is to cleanse the Well of Demons of the demon worshippers. He explains what is expected of him to his comrades and Magnara seems the most disturbed by this revelation, not entirely comfortable with being used as a tool for one evil power to thwart the evil agenda of another. Lester tries to convince the Dragonborn that his master is the lesser of the two evils but Magnara remains conflicted. Departing ways with Meredith, the party returns to the Seven-Pillared Hall where Takashi retires, Lester goes to do work for Gendar (as part of their agreement for the purchase of the alchemical supplies) and Magnara seeks the company of Surina.

After he awakes, Takashi joins Magnara in the common room of the Halfmoon Inn feeling more exhausted and ill than he was when he went to bed. Using the power of Bahamut, Magnara cures what’s ailing him and the two discuss the situation before them regarding aiding Lester in his patron’s task. Magnara eventually agrees with Takashi that they are still fighting evil and should Asmodeus’ followers fill the void left by the vanquished demon worshippers, then they will be the next enemies to fall.

At the conclusion of their meeting one of the locals, a kobold named Charrak, hands them a message from an unidentified individual praising their work against the Bloodreavers and claiming to be a member of the evil organization who the slavers work for who is seeking its downfall. With the individual requesting a secret meeting in two hours in one of the rooms off the main corridors leading from the Seven-Pillared Hall, the pair gathers Lester and the trio head out to see who this mysterious person is.

9D3ED1C6-8B23-40D9-B314-826D13B42ACB.jpegUpon arrival at the meeting site, the party steps into an ambush as a large bronze golem in the shape of an axe-wielding Minotaur pushes a massive boulder to block the room’s sole entrance while two tiefling archers rain arrows on the party from a ledge over-looking the room. The fight is pretty one-sided as Lester and Takashi struggle to protect themselves from the skilled archers while the bronze golem beats down Magnara with powerful blows. As his companions fall, Lester uses his magic to turn himself into gaseous form and escape through the boulder-blocked passageway.

Following as long as he can in gaseous form, Lester sees their attackers bound Takashi and Magnara in rope and then take them from the room to the Well of Demons where they will be turned over to the gnolls to be made into slaves or sacrificed. When he is forced to transform back to normal, Lester’s failed attempt to continue following by using stealth results in him surrendering and joining his companions as a captive. With things looking bleak the party struggles to figure out a way to get out of their predicament.

3B2DD01F-27F3-4E9B-847E-66578BE6D033.jpegLuckily, Meredith and her small force intercepts the party and their captors and a fierce battle erupts between the two forces. During the fighting Lester, Magnara and Takashi are able to free themselves and contribute to the mayhem as best they can with fists and spells still left at their disposal. The battle proves to be a bloody one and in the end only Lester, Takashi, Magnara and Meredith remain alive. A search of the bodies reveals some messages from the rogue Mage of Saruun, Paldemar, to the leader of the Yeenoghu-worshipping gnoll leader Maldrick Scarmaker talking about the party being interlopers and offering them as a gift. It seems pretty obvious that all paths are leading to the Well of Demons.

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Severius' Journal- "Action Uncertain?"

Dovak tells us that the ancient stonework of these caverns below the Sacred Stone Monastery are Dwarven in origin and that has lead to some speculation considering the presence of Duergar fighting alongside the Monks during our battle at the Monastery’s entrance. In our wandering of the sub-level below the Monastery, we came across a locked gate barring an ancient staircase leading further down. This gate was unlocked using a key that was found on the vanquished orog leader and after a long descent, we have arrived at a grand chasm spanned by a stone bridge. Aszh and I have discussed our observations and considered that perhaps Duergar reside in the subterranean realm below the Monastery and are in an alliance with the monks above.

Our foray into the Monastery has been a challenge certainly, and laying here in prayer to Gorm in the darkness of an ancient Dwarven hallway still surrounded by enemies my comrades and I are uncertain of our next action. Allegro has become separated from the group. His attempt to lead away our pursuers was not successful and his fate remains unknown. I am asking Gorm to bless me with a Sending spell so I might commune with my friend and ascertain his status. Above us, in the subterranean level directly below that Monastery a deadly Umber Hulk stalks the passageways. Aszh and I were nearly killed by the creature as we attempted to hold it off while the others retreated. The creature left us unconscious while it pursued the others. Fortunately Gorm was with us and he ensured the beast was lead astray while our companions returned and dragged us to safety. 690767B2-D7E3-4651-BCB0-314128653EE7.jpeg

The ancient stair and the area it lead to appears to be of questionable safety. Immediately upon attempting to cross the stone bridge across the chasm we were attacked by gargoyles which were concealed amongst the stone surroundings. The creatures were difficult to slay, our weapons seemingly not as effective as they should have been, even Dovak’s normally devastatingly powerful axe blows were significantly reduced in effectiveness. After killing two of the creatures, the third flew off into the darkness. We decided to not proceed forward. We are too weak to continue further without rest and recuperation and most of us feel a need to reunite with Allegro before proceeding further. I do not know if I have been in worse circumstances than I currently find myself in but I have faith in Gorm’s ability to provide and protect.

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Severius’ Journal- “Reunited and Retreating”

We have learned more regarding the fate of the Mirabar Delegation during the last two hours than we have during the entirety of the proceeding month. This information is indeed very much cause for concern and speaks of a great evil growing and threatening to corrupt and destroy the Dessarin Valley, and most likely beyond, if not stopped. But I must pause and collect myself…Starting from the beginning would offer a complete explanation, yes?

After successful communication with Allegro by the blessing of Gorm’s Sending spell, we were able to reunite with our halfling friend in the room where we have vanquished the orog and ogre guards; their bodies still lay where we left them, the blood from their wounds now dry and thankfully still too soon to display the bloat or putrid smell of decomposition. After a hasty reunion and exchange of information to update each other on the past day’s events we headed upstairs intent on exiting the monastery as soon as possible to both get clear of danger and so I may treat Brunldenthar injuries. We had only just exited onto the ground floor when we were confronted by one of the Sacred Stone Monastery monks. This woman, which I only deduce based on the sound of her voice and shape of her body was different than the others we had fought. There was a conviction in her voice and an unnerving feeling about her presence which I believe was mainly due to the realization that her gilded demonic mask lacked eyes or vision slits.

The woman demanded our immediate surrender so that proper “justice” may be meted out but none in my party had any interested in complying and battle was soon joined. The sightless woman was not alone and invisible Duergar revealed themselves and joined the melee, as did another monk and a warrior covered in strange armor made of Stone. Much majick was spent by myself in our party to face such foes and I am indeed thankful to the blessings that Gorm bestowed to this humble servant. I knew in my heart that our cause was just and Gorm would provide victory. The sightless monk’s allies were slain but unfortunately she was able to escape and we elected to leave the monastery rather than engage in pursuit not knowing what more potential foes await. FB91E724-FD76-4A6E-BD2E-55D7E3A093F1.jpeg

Arriving at camp, we found Brunldenthar as Allegro described, in good spirits but malnourished and injured. Aszh and I both utilized the blessing from our patrons to heal the dwarf and much of his health was restored. With strength returned the dwarf told us what befell the Delegation- an ambush by Sacred Stone monks shortly after the Delegation had left Beliard and was enroute to Summit Hall. Brunldenthar told us that many of the Delegation were slain and those that survived were taken captive where they were escorted to the River Dessarin to meet with river pirates who were paid by the monks (using Brunldenthar’s collection of valuable books) to take the prisoners across. Before the prisoners were placed aboard, another ambush occurred, this time by vulture-riding bandits that attacked the pirates and the monks. In the confusion Brunldenthar was able to confirm that the bandits were able to capture and get away with at least one of the surviving Delegation members, Deseyna Norvael, a noble from Waterdeep. EB94A196-DC8F-4473-BBB0-EEF516A8D4B3.jpeg

With the surviving bandits retreating, Brunldenthar confirmed that he and two others of the Delegation, Rhundorth (one of Mirabar’s finest smiths and a veteran warrior) and Teresiel (a moon elf from Silverymoon) were taken to the Monastery and held as prisoners with other people that the monks had kidnapped from the neighboring towns and countryside to excavate and mine the subterranean level below the monastery.

During his captivity Brunldenthar learned that the monks were in fact an elemental cult of Earth, this particular sect being made of evil worshippers that had established a base in the Dessarin Valley. Brunldenthar admitted that he was no expert but based on the limited knowledge he did know, the cult posed a great danger to the Dessarin Valley and beyond if they were allowed to continue to grow in power. He did not know what the cult was up to, especially in the deeper subterranean level that lay below the subterranean level that was immediately below the monastery but he fears the worse, especially after the cult took Teresial and Rhundorth to the lower level a tenday or so ago. After hearing Brunldenthar’s tale, everyone in the group was in agreement that we must take action but Brunldenthar cautioned us that these were powerful enemies indeed.

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The Assault on the Well of Demons Begins

In the morn, Magnara, Takashi and Lester have found that tensions, alliances and life in general has gotten more complicated by their cooperation with Meredith. Surina, having heard of the party’s relationship with the tiefling follower of Asmodeus, confronts the party on their commitment to help her facilitate conditions to encourage settlement into the Seven-Pillared Hall and surrounding areas. She believes that the next step in this process is to secretly remove the Duergar presence in the Seven-Pillared Hall to send a message to the slaver Dwarves and others that support the slave trade that they are not welcome; with the threat of slavery gone, Surina believes that more outsiders will come to settle the area.

There is a heated discussion between Surina and the party that ultimately results in Surina stomping off in disgust at their failure to commit to an immediate assault. Before she departs she honors her agreement to provide the party with secret location of the oracle, the Witching Hour’s Sage. The party discusses amongst themselves what to do and by the time Meredith returns from her meeting with the Duergar they have decided to proceed to the Well of Demons and cleanse the demon-worshipping gnolls from the area.
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The trip to the Well is uneventful and the first opponents the party fights when they enter the Blackclaw Tribe base are gricks accompanied by a ghast. Despite being ambushed, the party vanquishes the creatures without much trouble. Proceeding deeper into the gnoll tribe’s lair, it becomes apparent that something supernatural was occurring at the Well. The veil separating the prime material plane and an unknown plane of evil was weak and Lester informed the party that this would mean that it would be easier for denizens of the two planes to cross over.

Continuing with caution, the party is able to ambush a group of gnolls in a mess hall and after easily dispatching them become involved in a protracted counterattack by a gnoll directing a pack of giant hyenas. Using the terrain their advantage, the party is able to funnel the enemy to attack piecemeal and with a combination of martial prowess and the magic of two warlocks, the hyenas were killed and their pack master ran off. The element of surprise now gone, the group readied for harder battles to come.
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Severius’ Journal- Assaulting the Monastery Again, Disturbing News and There Be Giants

Despite the ambush in the night by the pack of hell hounds we were able to recover enough to go forward with our plan to conduct yet another assault on the monastery. I must admit that I have some apprehension about breaching the monastery’s confines yet again. The monks know we’re here and will be ready. Only Brunldenthar’s worry about his comrades in the lower levels keeps me on this course but Aszh and I suspect that the enemies are replacing their losses from the lower levels and only Gorm knows how many their ranks hold.

Their leader, the eyeless masked monk, was able to escape our last encounter and Allegro suspects that she may be found in the north western section of the monastery. We decided to enter the monastery on that side, using the same door that Brunldenthar used to escape; the now rotting body of Brunldenthar’s fellow prisoner still laid on the ground where the monks had struck him down seconds from freedom.

Our approach was anything but stealthy, heavy weapons and armor saw to that, and Dovak lead the blitz inside. Ahead, Allegro’s Mage Hand picked the lock on the door. As we suspected the monks were ready for us and Dovak was attacked the second he entered the door. Led by the eyeless monk, the monks put up a fierce resistance. I have never seen someone move so fast, and to use nothing but punches and kicks to inflict damage was a sight to see- too bad my comrades and I were on the receiving end of that combat prowess.

We were able to dispatch all our foes, with the exception of the eyeless monk, who fled through a door. We gave chase but did not know where she had gone in the maze of corridors and doors beyond. Electing to proceed with caution, we continued through the monastery, clearing the area room by room. We still had much of the monastery to search when we arrived at the main entrance, and it was here that we found the monks had been reinforced by Minotaurs. These bull-headed creatures were formidable warriors and a deadly melee ensued. DAD2DDE4-E174-4DC6-83F9-8C17BB73FD1E.jpeg

Again we vanquished our foes but were too wounded to continue our search of the monastery; if there were further Minotaurs about we would be hard pressed to survive that confrontation. Wounded, we departed the monastery to head back to our campsite to recuperate. There we found Lady Savra waiting for us.

The young noble seemed distraught and told us of her recently discovered suspicions that some of the members of the Feathergale Society, including Commander Thurrl, were part of an inner circle conducting nefarious activities. She recalled our description of the mysterious dark-clad vulture-riders that attacked us and secretly observed similar persons going to the Feathergale Spire.

D230DB77-184D-4825-AB0C-F74DBC018336.jpeg During our discussion, we noted a plume of smoke rising into the sky in the Sumber Hills not too far from our position. When we asked Savra about this she told us that a gathering of Druids was taking place at the ruins of an old abbey. A Druid circle called the Circle of the Scarlet Moon claims to know a magical rite that will stabilize the chaotic weather patterns in the Valley. Druids from afar were going to the ruins to witness this powerful rite.

Aszh told us that he had a bad feeling about this Rite, and urged us to investigate this situation. After a brief discussion, we decided to proceed to the abbey ruins to investigate this Rite, telling Lady Savra to go back to the Spire and wait for our return. Brunldenthar was disappointed in our decision due to the worry about his missing comrades but seemed to understand the difficulty we were having in fully breeching the number of enemies in the monastery.

On the way we came across a pair of Hill Giants. I have never seen such tall humanoids before, though I have heard rumors of giant-sized humanoids in the subterranean, but thankfully the confines of most areas keep these creatures from the populace. The brutal creatures tried to make a meal of us but we didn’t obliged their offer. They won’t be bothering anyone again.

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Severius’ Journal- “Where There’s Smoke, There’s Fire”

I have only recently awaken…my wounds are deep and many but they will heal. To come so close to death’s door…to almost come to stand in judgement before Gorm….both a blessing, because I know that I have been his ever-loyal servant, and a fear, because I know there is still much work for me to do in his name.

I am still unsure of what happened…what provoked this attack on me and my friend Biggle. We had only just arrived at the campsite of the Druid Gariena and her two faerie companions…sprites I think…and were enjoying friendly conversation when the Druid and her three Ranger companions from the previous campsite approached us with weapons drawn…hostile looks on their faces. Biggle stepped towards them, most likely to exchange a friendly inquiry when they charged to attack us. Their Druid leader unleashing a magical fireball in our midst. Biggle and I were able to avoid most of the blast but the sprites were cremated where they stood and Gariena suffered horrendous burns.

Confusion gripped me briefly as I could think of no reason for being assaulted…I thought our conversation with these people was pleasant enough despite my feeling that they were being elusive about some of their knowledge of strange happenings of the Dessarin Valley and how they acted nervous during our conversation. Perhaps Biggle had shared too much of our party’s exploits.

Outnumbered and boxed in by the three warriors, we were at a massive disadvantage. Luckily my armor and shield protected me from most of the blades but the Druid was free to cast magic unmolested. Fortunately aid came to us by an enraged Gariena. In a fury because of the deaths of her friends, she called down lightning from the sky to blast the other Druid. The two became involved in a magikal duel as the warriors focused on me and Biggle. I believe that Biggle and I owe our lives to Gariena’s efforts…without her involvement we would have surely died.

Consciousness left me when one of the warriors struck me down. I remembered briefly being in sorrow because the battle was so sudden that I still had many gifts of Gorm left at my disposal and was not able to unleash their fury on my foes.

When I came to, I was relieved to find Biggle and Gariena alive and our foes vanquished. As I looked through the smoky haze to the ruins of the towering abbey and the massive burning wicker man effigy nearby I couldn’t help but to feel a sudden moment of dread…something was not right…420067A8-7B27-4922-A764-FCE098838498.jpeg

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Severius Journal- "Call for Aid!"

As Biggle and I recuperated from our battle and conversed with Gariena, Allegro stumbled into our midst, frantic and wounded. He told us that he and the rest of the group had been attacked by the Druids of the Scarlet Moon after Aszh tried conversing with them. He seemed to think that Aszh caused some type of confrontation. The Druids summoned a creature made of fire and killed the party, only Allegro was able to escape. Aghast, Biggle and I couldn’t bear to believe such news, though Allegro insisted on seeing it.

Biggle and I were eager to check on the status of our comrades and find out the reasons for the hostilities with the Druids of the Scarlet Moon, but we were also wary of danger, considering the battle we had just been involved in, and the potential battle to come. We enlisted Gariena for aid, and the elf, still angered at the murder of her friends, agreed to help us. We then approached the first Druids that we met upon our arrival at site of the Wicker Man Rite and explained to them what has befalling both our party and Gariena’s. They seemed concerned but not quick to judge the altercation without more information. They explained to us that the leader of the Circle of the Scarlet Moon, a man named Elizar Dryflagon, told them the Rite of the Wicker Man was a complicated and delicate Rite that could not be disrupted before it’s completion. Perhaps Aszh and his group had disturbed this Rite and action had to be taken. Regardless, these Druids (Varigo, Mahoon, Inari and Fariya) agree to accompany us to speak with Dryflagon and inquiry about our comrades.

Deciding to warn others, and perhaps garner more support, we decided to talk with another camp’s inhabitants, two Druids accompanied by a bear. The conversation went pleasant enough (the bear was very agitated) and we departed ways with this pair on what we thought were neutral, if not friendly, terms and were quite surprised when they sent a pair of fireballs to erupt in our midst while we walked away. We survived this treachery, just barely and immediately counterattacked. Our newfound Druid companions joined us in the fight and the battle was quick and brutal. The two Druids that attacked us lay dead and their bear liberated by Varigo, though their fire spells nearly cost myself and Varigo our lives.

After attending to the wounded, we started towards the ruined abbey, now called the Scarlet Moon Hall, and stopped at two other camps to provide warning and enlist aid in our endeavor. The Druids at one camp, which included a sea Druid named Sauruki, agreed to accompany us but would hold judgement until they heard from Dryflagon; Sauruki Did shared with us that he too felt some apprehension about this Rite of the Wicker Man.

The last of our following were two rough-looking men who spoke little but appeared to be no strangers to violence. Biggle believes they are perhaps mercenaries, and paid them a generous fee to protect me should hostilities commence. They accepted his gold, and nonchalantly followed. I’m not sure they can be trusted, and still don’t understand their interest in this Wicker Man Rite, but if they earn their gold then I guess that’s all that matters for the time being…

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Severius’ Journal- Scarlet Moon Hall Battle Royale!!

By the time the fires finally died we had lost more of our newfound allies. The battle was intense and were it not for the assistance that Biggle and I had gathered to our cause before confronting Dryflagon we would surely have perished.

B66BCFD0-9F20-4331-82B8-38798C6328F7.jpegWhen we initially confronted the Druid leader he tried honeyed words to sway the masses, while puffing casually on his pipe, but his skills at persuasion were child’s play when compared to my teachings as a priest of Gorm. I was taught since birth to influence others, to inspire courage, devotion and yes fear, fear of the unknown, fear of what Dryflagon’s true intentions were with his foul ceremony.

Seeing his efforts at speech craft failing, Dryflagon turn to violence. Unleashing fiery majicks and summoning a being from the elemental plane of fire from the giant Wicker Man. More of his followers emerged from the ruined abbey to join the battle and soon there was the smell of burnt flesh from the dead and dying on both sides. I saw nothing of the mercenaries that Biggle had hired to protect me, but I had no need of them for Gorm saw to my safety, gave strength to my cause and used me as his divine vessel to punish the wicked.

Though it cost us dearly, we pushed through the tough resistance and Dryflagon and his followers sought refuge in the abbey forcing us to ascend the wooden scaffolding that lead to the breach in the upper wall that served as its only entrance. It was during these last moments of the battle that we found my companions- Aszh, Dovak and Enna unconscious and bound in the tents surrounding the abbey, wounded but alive. I give thanks to Gorm for their return.

The scaffolding finally collapsed from the flames as Dryflagon made his escape into the abbey and my companions and I saw no need to immediately pursue him into unknown danger while many of us were on the brink of death from our wounds. No longer sustained by the majick of the Scarlet Moon Druids, their giant Wicker Man succumbed to the flames and collapsed. It made a nice bonfire to rest by as we planned our next course of action.

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