Wrapping up from Horde of the Dragon Queen:
We leave off seconds after the fall of Wyrmspeaker Rezmir and the great white dragon Glazhael.
Lia, Kitai, and Amara work with the kobolds to butcher and take the skin, scales, and other valuable parts of the white dragon.
Blagothgess goes to the steering tower to fly the castle out of the lake.
Celine, Rurik, Liana, the quasit, and three Ogres visit the lower levels.
Celine uses knock to open the door to Rezmir’s quarters. The party is careful to walk around the rug (as we saw Rezmir do this). A couple of drowned guard Drakes are in the room.
Celine unlocks the chest and finds a sizable treasure horde: 400 gp gold chain, Silver torque with Dragons heads (200 gp), 6 moon stones (50 gp each), 20 pearls (3000 gp total), 600 sp, 200 gp, 50 platinum pieces.
After exploring the storeroom, the party visits the Red Wizard quarters. After quickly dispatching a lone gargoyle, the party focuses its attention on a book attached by iron chain to the lecturn. After casting comprehend languages (Infernal), Celine identifies the book as "Beyond the Iron Gates", a treatise on devil summoning. The last chapter describes the process of summoning Tiamat. Celine removes the last chapter and destroys the rest of the book.
A thorough search of the room yields several letters to Rath Modar (likely the red wizard that disappeared) from Severin (supreme leader of the cult of the dragon) that prove the Red Wizards and the Cult are linked. Other letters show some Red Wizards aren't keen on the cult's plan. We take the letters. The wardrobe contains some red wizard robes. We take them for disguise purposes.
We go to the dragon treasure hoard leaving the ogres behind to clean up. The treasure is submerged under a small lake some 100ft by 60ft. Rurik with his new water-breathing mask casts detect magic and heads for the closest magical presence, about 25 ft underwater. The water is extremely cold, so Rurik is constantly making Con saves to avoid accumulating exhaustion. The quasit changes to toad form and accompanies Rurik underwater.
Rurik retrieves a potion and long bow before fashioning a “boat” from some flotsam which includes barrels, beds, bench, bookcase, arm chairs, wagon, desk, and a small catapult. Rurik uses the wagon as a diving raft and makes two trips before collapsing on the shore, freezing and unable to continue. The quasit dons the mask and retrieves the final items. In total the loot includes:
- Arcane Scroll (Detect Undead, Whispering Wind)
- Arcane Scroll (Protection from Arrows, Deep Slumber)
- Arcane Scroll (Cure Moderate Wounds, Protection from Arrows, Hold Person)
- Circlet of Persuasion (+3 Cha based skill checks)
- Cloak of Elvenkind
- Hand of the Mage (allows wearer to cast mage hand)
- Oil of Bless Weapon
- Potion of Aid
- Potion of Hide from Undead
- Potion of Shield of Faith (+2)
- Potion of Gaseous Form
- Long Sword (+1)
- Long Bow (+1)
- Leather Armor (+1)
- Bracers of Defense
The party recuperates, feast on dragon meat, and celebrates!
The next day the party loads the wagon/raft with 300 pounds of dragon scales and hides. Celine takes dragon teeth, claws, and dragon blood.
Travel To Waterdeep:
Celine asks Blagothkus to take us to Waterdeep. (persuasion > 20)
Blagothkus: "Thank you for removing these treacherous creatures from my castle. I will be happy to drop you off."
Celine: "You are truly noble."
It takes 5 days to get to Waterdeep.
Digging for gems in the underwater horde, Lia’s familiar finds a the following:
- Amethyst (90 gp)
- Black Pearl (700 gp)
- Chalcedony (50 gp)
- Citrine (70 gp)
- Eye Agate (11 gp)
- Lapis Lazuli (8 gp)
- Onyx (50 gp)
- Red Garnet (100 gp)
- Rhodochrosite (10 gp)
- Violet Garnet (300 gp)
Halfway through our trip Blagothkus says he saw a black dragon heading to the south east.
Celine uses the book to research the ritual to raise Tiamat. She finds that it requires massive summonings and the sacrifice of hundreds of souls to bring Tiamat’s body from Avernus, first layer of the Nine Hells and into the world. The details of the ritual make it clear that this is something that requires enormous preparation and expense—but the actual magical formulae and chants are not in the volume.
Celine researches destroying the mask. It appears that the mask is an artifact and therefore must be destroyed in a specific and special way that is currently unknown to the party.
On the 5th day of travel we notice a smoldering village on the planes below.
We get to Waterdeep. The Cloud castle lands and the party disembarks. Rurik summons a warhorse to pull the wagon laden with dragon parts.
We notice herds and crops have been abandoned. The people out there seem skittish. As we go through the countryside we learn of dragon attacks and raids.
Leosin welcomes us with open arms at the gates of Waterdeep.
Leosin: “You've arrived just in time for the council. The council has been meeting for a few days already and they are anxious to meet with you.”
Celine asks Leosin about how to destroy the evil sword and dragon mask. Leosin suggests showing it to the council. He says the Harpers might be able to help you find magic. Leosin takes us to a Harper safe house to rest.
Lia goes to Leomund’s Emporium (magical item shop). After much haggling the shopkeep agrees to take the evil sword and dragon parts in exchange for the following items delivered to the party:
White dragonscale cloak
+1 studded leather armor (x2)
flaming 1d6 upgrade
bag of holding
rope of climbing
+1 shield (x2)
slippers of spider climbing
winged boots (x7)
+1 hand crossbow
Meanwhile, Celine is researching how to destroy the mask. The Harper leader, Remallia “Remi” Haventree, suggests that Candlekeep and Silverymoon are the best options for discrete research. Or we could share it with the council. She says “your secret is safe with us”. The Harper leader agrees to use their resources to research at one or both libraries.
Episode 1: The Council of Waterdeep
The party revisits Leomunds Imporium and purchases chain mail barding for Kitai’s Worg.
Leosin escorted the party to the council meeting. He points out that there are multiple factions who will be evaluating the party’s words and actions, and it will be difficult to please all of them.
Recap of recent events
After introductions, Lord Dagult Neverember brings the meeting to order and recaps what we know about the cult and their ambition to bring Tiamat to Faerun:
- Black dragon eggs are recovered and in the possession of the Emerald Enclave.
- The cult is collecting treasure.
- A flying castle mysteriously arrived yesterday along with adventurers.
- Unusual dragon sightings.
Lord Neverember asks to hear from the adventurers.
Celine: "Honored lords and ladies we can confirm much of what the statements you shared. We have found evidence their plan to raise Tiamat. This will require the sacrifice of 1000's of souls, untold riches, and the 5 dragon masks. We have found evidence of Red Wizards and the Dragon Cult's alliance."
The letters are produced and passed around the table.
Celine: "Rath modar fled the scene when we encountered him on the flying council. We convinced Blagothguess to join our side against the cult. We encountered Rezmir with the mask of the black dragon. She was killed in self-defense. A big hit, but truly only a temporary setback for the cult."
Lia: "We killed the white dragon defending the treasure hoard when it attacked us."
Celine: "There is no limit to the evil creatures they will have among their allies or in their employ. Vampires, etc. They have a number of outposts throughout the Sword Coast. We have found 3 of their outposts. They are very large, they are very spread out; they have reinforcements; if you kill them in one place they will. Our goal must be to prevent them from raising Tiamat."
Ulder doubts the evidence.
Onthar pounds the table. "Ulder, what more evidence do you need? They are throughout the Sword Coast. We must stop this evil from spreading further."
Ser Roland Sommerset joins the party
Ulder Ravengard pledges Ser Roland Sommerset (Andrew’s character), a lieutenant of the Flaming Fist, to join the party in their quest.
The Black Dragon Mask remains with the party
Lord Neverember: "You defeated a Wymspeaker."
Celine: "Yes we recovered the artifact and are attempting to destroy it."
Ruik shows the mask to the room and explains its powers.
Lord Neverember: “seems cult may be using mask to persuade the dragons to do their work.”
Taern speaks up. "Clearly a threat of great magnitude. It is a key piece. I do not trust that there are hidden alliances among this body. Don't trust anyone of us to take it."
Ontharr supports Taern's words.
Ulder: “we should take the mask.”
Connerad: “Who do you propose should hold the mask.”
Ulder: “need a trusted magical power to hold it. Taern.”
Taern: “I see many of you looking at me. I would be willing to be the steward of the artifact. I need someone with far more magical ability to attempt to destroy it.”
Celine: "We have not yet been able to determine how to destroy it."
Ulder: "why not give it to us?"
"Melandrach: "just let them keep the mask."
Ulder: "I refuse to leave it with a group."
Taern: "You mean the unprotected group who flew in on their own ice castle."
Remallia: < clears throat > "I think you are all are forgetting we all have been attacked – successfully."
Neverember: I think it is to a vote. Ulder votes to take the mask; rest vote to leave with the party.
Giant’s Ice Castle flys away.
Next on the agenda: what should we do with this ice castle.
Celine: "It belongs to the cloud giant Blagothgess. It is his home. He is a reasonable man."
Ulder: "As for the issue of this castle we search it and destroy it."
Celine: "I don't believe it would be fair to search his castle"
Ulder: "Is the dragon affiliated with the dragon cult?"
Celine: "He is no longer working for them."
<Background: Giants and Dragons like to fight each other.>
Connerad: "We should not allow the giant to keep the castle. We want to use it as a weapon."
Isteval: "Perhaps we can convince the giant to join our cause."
Ulder: "A giant owning a flying castle would be a very good ally."
Ontharr: "I support but the giant should not benefit from his ill-gotten gains."
Ulder: "I say the same thing. The people will have their possessions and money back."
Celine: "You may "
Neverember: By force or negotiation? Unanimous to negotiate. "We will send Isteval to negotiate."
Isteval: "May not be the best negotiator."
Neverember: "We will form a subcommittee to select the negotiate led by Sir Isteval."
< Perception check >
Celine, Kitai, Liana – notice the castle flying away through the skylight.
Kitai: "I suggest you accelerate your negotiations."
Black Dragon Eggs will be ransomed to parents
Next on the agenda: the Black Dragon Eggs held by the Emerald Enclave.
Delaan: I am against destruction of the eggs as they are part of the natural order.
Remallia: I may have a solution. These dragon eggs are merely babies at the moment. However they have parents who are being courted by the cult of the dragon. Perhaps we can convince the Black Dragons not to add to the cult.
Neverember: As you know we need cash for the army. We should sell them.
Connerad: "Can we create our own dragon army?"
Delaan: "I am completely against destroying them. They are evil chromatic dragons. Second of all to raise them would take a millinia . We don't have that time. I think we should return the eggs to get the dragons."
Taern: "Use them as ransom."
Ulder: "Hold them as ransom for money."
Onthar: "We use the eggs to find there parents and dispatch with that evil."
< Lia casts mage hand and sits on it. >
Remallia: "I move the emerald enclave send a representative to the parents."
Onthar: "And who would that representative be?"
Celine shares that at Castle Naratar we looked through the telescope and saw a black dragon. On the 3rd floor we discovered the farseer of illusk and saw black dragons in the swamp (in the mere of deadman).
Vote: destruction of eggs – 3; ransom eggs to parents – 5
Party is granted investigative powers
Neverember: Move this party as worthy and give emergency investigative power under the council.
Onthar: "I wholeheartedly second."
Neverember: "All in favor:
Vote: 7 yes; 1 no – Melandrach
White Mask lost; White Wyrmspeaker Varram seen at Boareskyr Bridge
Remallia: "As leader of the Harpers I have sad news to bring to the council. My husband Lord Albretter was murdered recently in Waterdeep. My husband had been investigating the location of Varram the White. We know the white mask was stolen from Varram. We do not know who or where. Track to the settlement of Boareskyr Bridge near the Serpent Hills. Unfortunately, assassins were dispatched. When we found him there was no question it was members of Varram's entourage killed him. The assassin was a bearded devil."
"You know I was instrumental in bringing you all hear today. Adding the emotional impetus of my husband’s death I am sworn to defeat this cult."
Taern: "Thank you lady Remallia. The council joins me in giving condolences. To my peers on this council this cult is an ever present threat. I believe we should form an alliance to bring down this cult now."
Ulder: "I am not convinced. I feel this alliance would be misguided. How can we all trust each other. I must use my resources to rebuild Balder's Gate."
Neverember: The topic is the murder. Vote: unanimous. Any other new business.
Draakhorn must be stopped, find Maccath the Crimson in the Sea of Moving Ice
Delaan: We all felt the weird occurrence before the meeting. The emerald enclave knows something. I have a witness named Dala Silmerhelve.
Neverember calls forth Dala Silmerhelve. This woman dressed in noble clothing comes in. She is a noble. This disturbance is known as the Draakhorn. Chromatic dragons hear it clearly and will answer its call.
Neverember: We must clearly stop this horn.
Ulder: "Can we not use this to attract the dragons and kill them."
Melandrach: "That could be 1000s of dragons."
Neverember: I move we task our heroes to find the and stop this horn.
Taern: Second the motion.
Remallia: The harpers pledge to research the location of this horn.
Ulder: "Why don't we just follow the dragons?"
Dallas: I have information that the last known location was in the sea of moving ice in the north. Maccath the Crimson, a tiefling sorcerer, knows much of this. No one alive knows more about the horn. I have heard from the Arcane Brotherhood they received reports from her. We located only her ship (heavily damaged).
Ulder: "What shall we compensate these adventurers?"
Neverember: "What would you offer?"
Ulder: "I am willing to pledge my troops if they complete these quests."
Episode 3: Death to the Wyrmspeakers
The party decides to track Varram the White (dwarf) and the White Dragon Mask.
Varram was recently seen at the camp near Boareskyr Bridge.
Everyone gets 1 healing potion and a mount.
The party travels to Boareskyr Bridge. Amara relates the history of Boareskyr Bridge. Constructed of black granite it bears images of two deities who fought during the Time of Troubles. This way-station settlement is little more than a tent city. A contingency maintains watch over the bridge in a newly built keep.
At Bolo's Tentside Inn, Lia asks the barkeep (Bolo, a female Halfling) if she has seen a dwarf in purple robes.
Bolo: "I saw him. He asked for escort to the hills. He killed one of the scaled folk in cold blood. You aren't going to hurt him are you?"
Lia: (rolls deception) "No. Our dwarf friend is looking to meet up with him."
Bolo: “He traveled north with about a dozen cloaked and hooded warriors.”
Liana easily finds the trail. The party follows to the serpent hills. After a day the party arrives at a ruined settlement in a canyon between 2 bluffs. There are 2 magical statues with hands raised as a warning. There is an entrance 30 feet up the cliff wall atop a stone stairwell that stops 10 feet short of a platform jutting out from the cliff face. A ladder has been placed to reach the final 10 feet. There is a recent camp near the ruined fountain with 3 bedrolls. There are 7 shallow graves east of campsite.
The party looks at the statues. When approached, the statues turn toward the party and speak: “Halt. You come before Diderius, ether walker and conduit of clairvoyance. Behold ye now his wondrous triumphs. Diderius extends wisdom, and Diderius offers knowledge. Which do you seek?"
Party: "We seek knowledge."
Statues: “Diderius shall grant you what you seek, but only if you heed him and continue to show proper respect!”. The statues revert to their original position.
The party knows that Diderius is a powerful mage that specializes in divination.
The graves are fresh and dug within 2 days. It appears that people were dragged off by some creatures towards the well. Two feet, five toes, claws. Lizardfolk have 4 toes.
There is a well and campfire 20 feet to the west of the graves. It appears that creatures came out of the well and grabbed the creatures and dragged them into the well. The quasit goes down the well to have a look. It finds a narrow passage with fresh blood. The quasit squeezes through the hole and finds 3 trolls eating 3 bearded devils (poisonous beard. 2 attacks. Glave creates an infernal wound).
Entrance to the Tomb of Diderius
The party climbs the stairs and ladder to the entrance. Celine, Amara, and Liana turn invisible and enter. The find an Antechamber with illusionary decorations, alcoves that contain splinters of bone, and a stone door that has been forced open.
Upon passing through the door a thought pops into everyone’s mind: "some secrets are not meant for mortal minds are meant to know. Look away from the knowledge." There is a room containing 6 status of cowled wizards leaning on staffs, their faces obscured by deep hoods. The party crouches down and avoids looking at the statues as they traverse the room. The floor is litter with bones from about 12 people. Very old bones. As Celine walks she hears grinding sound from the statues. They get to the door on the other end.
The next room is a 40×40 rotunda chamber with four exits and a balcony 10 feet up around the rotunda. The floor has an elaborate mosaic of a knight with a shining sword fighting a Chimera. “Safe” is written in chalk on the left door.
As Celine searches for traps, the mosaic shifts and the Chimera claws its way out of the mosaic into the room, however the Chimera seems to be two dimensional and made of tiles.
Celine, Amara, and Liana retreat and close the door just as a gout of fire springs from the Chimera.
Liana knows that Chimeras are not intelligent. Attacks are bite, horns, claw, and fire breath.
The rest of the party joins and and opens the door. Dispel magic is ineffective. Amara casts bardic inspiration.
The Chimera springs from the tapestry and attacks the party. Liana runs up to the ledge with her spider climb slippers. The Chimera manages to hit Roland, Kitai, and the Worg with fire breath. The party retreats into the left hand door marked “safe” and closes it behind them.
Safe Room with Well
Behind the door is a room with a well in the middle. Along the west wall is a stairs 8 feet up to a ledge where there is an empty basin and a brass lever. The well has bright red and slippery mushrooms on the walls and floor around it. There are sleeping rolls and camping gear around the room. “Safe” is inscribed on the wall in chalk.
The party doesn’t recognize the mushrooms (nature check), but thinks they are harmless. Roland eats one and reports that it tastes like raw liver but is edible.
There are no traps and nothing interesting about the gear and 5 bedrolls.
The well is about 30 ft deep. Ruik climbs down with a rope of climbing and climber’s kit. The bottom has water chest deep. There is an underwater tunnel big enough for a small creature. The quasit goes through the room with the trolls and ends up in the well with Rurik.
Kitai examines the basin and pulls the lever. It returns to the up position and nothing happens. Kitai hears a mechanism beneath the drain in the basin. The party pulls a bucket of water, fills the basin, and pulls the lever. The water drains out of the basin.
Roland drinks some water. It smells like troll piss. Rurik comes climbs out of the well.
Chimera Room part 2
The party opens the door. The mosaic appears to be damaged. Liana runs along the wall and the Chimera emerges from the mosaic and attacks. After being hit by one more fire breath, the party destroys the Chimera and tiles fly everywhere.
Liana goes to the north double doors. They are plated and engraved with copper. The doors are oversized and bulging out towards the room from their frame. As Liana yanks on the door, the hinges break and a wall of rubble pours in. Liana takes 22 pts damage.
The party examines the east hallway and discovers a secret panel that reveals a vertical shaft for a dumbwaiter. The quasit explores the shaft. The bottom the shaft emerges into a stairway leading up to a door marked “Danger?” in chalk, and down to a room containing 5 bearded devils seated at a table. They are sitting there motionless.
The party earns 4100XP for a total of 38,379XP.
5/28/2016 Session – Tomb of Diderius part 2
The bearded devils are sitting at a dining table and ignore the quatsit. There are three exits. 1 door and two hallways. One hallway down with a spiked shut door and in chalk the word "Danger." Another short hallway goes up to a door marked in chalk with the message "?Danger."
The quatsit returns to the Chimera room, then goes down the hallway into a large room. The smell of incense permeates the room. Rich tapestries ring the room. A few chairs in the room. There is a chute letting in some sunlight. It looks like some kind of waiting room.
Celine explores the hallway, finds a mechanical plate installed on the floor, and disarms the trap.
The quatsit hears a whisper in its ear "Humility proffered in the manner of Mystril shelters those opening the way to seeking knowledge." Everyone knows Mystril is a fallen goddess with a common gesture to turn your head down and raising the hands as if holding a lamp.
Looking for traps Celine finds 6 sarcophagi in the niches behind the tapestries. Lia detects magic on the door to the north and on the sarcophagi. We go through the door without magic in the manner of Mistral. The room is the same size as the previous room. It appears to be a library with bookshelves and tables. The shelves are now empty.
As we go down the aisles of empty bookshelves a ghost pops out. She has tattered robes.
Ghost: "What are you doing in my master's library?"
Celine: "We humbly seek knowledge."
Ghost: "Go away" and vanishes.
The ghost pops out again and yells "Don't touch that" at Lia.
Kitai: "Who's your master?"
Ghost: "Why Diderius is my master."
Lia points and says "there are no books."
Ghost: "What? The books are all gone! I am such a failure."
Ghost: "My name is Ilda"
Ruik: "what's beyond the door there."
Ilda: "Why should I tell you?"
Celine: "Tell us and we'll leave."
Ilda: "You're not going to take my books are you?"
We tell her we are here seeking knowledge from Diderius.
Kita: "Is he a ghost like you… You know… dead."
Ilda disappears crying.
We open the door after checking for traps.
It opens into a big room with a dias resembling a floating cloud. On the dias there is a throne and an imposing figure on the throne. Off to one side is a pile of treasure. There is a door off to one side. On the throne there is a 12 foot tall male with a white beard.
Party: "Oh great Diderius we come seeking knowledge."
We enter the room.
Man: "Yee who seek Diderius’s insight must first furnish tribute, that Diderius might work his mighty magic. Lay such tribute at my feet or depart."
Celine pulls out the Dragon Tork (200 gp). "You may pass."
Lia gave them a citrine (70 gp). "You may pass."
Ruik gives 10 copper pieces. "You may pass."
Kitai and Liana 5 copper pieces. "You may pass."
Warg 1 copper. "You may pass."
Sir Roland gives 10 copper. "You may pass."
Celine investigates and sees though the illusion and sees a wood chair with a clay golem.
The party opens the door and sees stairs going down to the room with 2 tables and 5 bearded devils. The devils are likely controlled by Varim the White.
Ruik goes into the room and approaches a bearded devil and waves his hand. The devil swipes it away and yells something in infernal.
Celine casts comprehend languages.
Celine: "We do not wish to disturb you. We are just passing through. Can you tell us what's through that door?"
Devil: "Our master did not tell us what is through the door."
Celine (21 deception): "Oh you're speaking of Varim. We seek him."
Devil: "Our master is Varim. That is where he went."
Celine: "What's beyond the other door?" (the door marked danger)
Devil: "There is treasure behind that door."
Celine: "Why is there danger?"
Devil: "There are pesky undead in there."
The party goes through the door. After a short hallway it opens into a large room with a large pool in the end. Double doors to one side are bulging into the room (like the ones with the cave-in behind them). Broken arrows, blood stains, and a dead body in the chamber. The water has an eerie dark glow to it.
Celine searches for traps and the dead body. It is a relatively fresh body, killed by stone arrows from the north doorway. It's a human dressed as a dragon cult member. The arrows are carved in stone with a cobra head. They are not magic. We recognize the symbol of the Yuan-Ti god Merrshaulk.
As Celine goes near the pool she glances at the water and gazes into the pool. Lia walks up and gazes in the pool.
Rurik: "Celine, Lia, whatcha looking at?"
Celine: "I see the gates of hell opening. If we drink of the precious water we shall be saved."
Rurik casts bless on Lia, Rurik, and Celine.
Celine dances with Rurik. He drags her away and she falls to the ground and lays motionless.
Lia is gazing into the water singing.
Rurik goes up and grabs Lia to drag her away from the pool.
Lia falls to the ground too.
After some time Celine wakes up as if form a long sleep. "What happened? That was fun." Lia wakes too.
Celine's arcana check knows she's seeing visions. Perhaps some kind of scyring pool. It is extremely powerful and you couldn't handle it. Likely Diderius' divination scrying pool.
Cast Bless on Kitai, Lia, Rurik
Kitai (buffed – rolls a 20) – he looks into the pool and realized that he needs to make a meaningful sacrifice to have his question answered. He feels a sense of hunger. Something like the death of a sentient creature. Kitai ponders the next step.
Lia approaches the water to try and bottle some of it. Her quatsit grabs water. As she stares at the water it evaporates from the vile.
Kitai tries to sacrifice his rat throwing him into the pool. His intuition is that he must kill or sacrifice a significant part. He murders his rat and puts it into the pool. Kitai goes into a trance. "How can this mask (black dragon mask) be destroyed permanently?"
Kitai has a vision and sees 5 (red, black, green, blue, white) dragon masks coming together and transforming into a new mask with all 5 heads of the chromatic dragon. Kitai passes out. The pool is bone dry. The empty pool no longer affects anyone.
We open the exit door and see a chamber. A massive stone sarcophagus sits on a dias in the center of the room. The walls are decorated with life size frescoes.
Approaching the sarcophagus we hear "You approach Diderius in repose. I know what you seek. Yuan-ti have taken the one called Varram beyond their portal in the northern wall. Be prepared, for I shall open the way to peril." We hear a chime and a secret door opens in the north.
We see a rough natural cavern and 6 lizardfolk. After some failed diplomacy, the party slays the lizardfolk and proceeds down some stairs to a deep pit crossed by a mossy bridge. The party fights off 6 more lizardfolk and 2 yuan-ti malisons before trying to cross.
Ruik slips and graps onto the moss. On the second try across the bridge.
Roland slips a few times too and gets across the bridge.
We measure the bottom its 120 to 80 ft. At the bottom see a lizardman who fell off being eaten by a Yuan-ti babies. The quatsit goes around the Yuan-ti hatchery. Many Yuan-ti babies and several adults looking over them. The walls are undulating. The quatsit returns to the party.
We take a short rest and recover a lot of hit points.
We are in the lower level and explore the various rooms. A rhomboid shaped room has statues around the edges with suits of plate armor at the feet of 2 of the statues.
The quatsit goes through several corridors until she finds a large room full of 8 Yuan-ti and 4 lizardfolk. It sees Varram beaten and bound. The Yuan-Ti are standing in shadows. 4 lizardfolk and 2 snake-headed Yuan-ti at the door. 3 Yuan-ti look more human female. 1 looks like a full snake.
Varram begs for his life and offers great wealth in exchange for his freedom to no avail.
We decide to wait and watch what is going on. And we burn off the moss to the bridge is not so slippery.
We see 4 lizardfolk start walking towards us. They turn and go through a door. A few minutes later 3 different lizard folk come out of the door. We wait for an hour and watch.
We go into the room with statues. Celine searches the room. 100s of snakes start slithering out of the holes in statues. They slither into the suits of armor, rise, and attack.
The party kills the statues and takes the plate armor and 4 ruby gems (1000gp each) from the statue eye sockets.
The party opens the door and quickly dispatches a yuan-ti pureblood and 3 lizard folk.
The room contains two totems in the forms of asps. They are magic abjuration. A dozen shafts in the floor 3 ft wide and 7 ft deep. Rubbish and things in there. Junk and padding. They could be dens or beds. Celine burns the totems.
The party finds 600 cp, 200 sp, 150 gp, and a potion of poison.
The party opens the door and finds a dead end. Celine finds and disarms a pressure plate, then finds a secret door. The party goes through the secret door and finds a room containing empty prison cells.
08/13/2016 Session – Tomb of Diderius part 3
Missions discussed with council:
- White mask was lost and we investigated that finding him in this tomb (full of Yenti).
- Drachorn must be stopped. Go to the see of moving ice.
- Concince Black dragons to stay out after giving back their eggs – delegated to council
The quatsit turns invisible and re-observes the room containing Varram. The room contains:
- 3 purebloods – limited spell casting; attack with weapons
- 2 malisons – shape changers – snake head, arms, or lower body; can poison, constrict
- 1 abomination – shape changer – full snake or snake with human arms; limited spell casting (mental)
- Varram – unconscious and lying on the floor.
At the end on a Dias with stone alter there is a female abomination and an altar carved with a giant cobra. Varram lays on the floor. He is bound and appears beaten.
Celine casts disguise self and disguises herself as a half orc mercenary. Celine opens the door and walks in: "Hello."
They eye her with suspicion. Abomination: "What do you want?"
Celine: "I'm on a job hired to look for this white mask." (Persuasion roll)
Abomination: "Why have you invaded our homesss?"
Celine: "I'm just looking for this mask. Happy to leave right now."
Abomination: "What is this massssk you speak of?"
Celine: "I don't know too much about it."
Abomination: "We have not seen this mask."
Celine: "Does that ugly dwarf there know where it is?"
Abomination: "This dwarf as invaded our homessss as well. He did not speak of a mask."
Varram appears unconscious.
Celine: "Thanks. I'll be going now."
Abomination: "Are you leaving our homesss?"
Celine: "Yes. If it is not here I'm going."
Abomination: "I will send my guards to escort you."
Malison: "The way out is to the left"
Rest of party hides as the guards follow Celine. Celine walks to the left to get out. Turn right at the corner. We recognize the way she came in.
Celine leads the guards towards the entrance and the party ambushes them from both directions.
After the surprise round, the guards call out: "It's an ambush. Help!" The party quickly overkills the guards with magic, blocking the main hallway in the process.
The quatsit peeks into the main room and sees everyone retreated into the central room. Sees 2 abominations and 5 pure bloods. They are talking about ambushed by adventurers.
Ruik goes up to the prison door and says "Hold your fire. I propose a deal. Give us the dwarf and we will leave."
Abomination: "We hassss a deal and you broke it."
Ruik responds: "We have altered the deal. Pray we don't alter it further."
Ruik earns inspiration. Who hoo! Go Star Wars!
And then Ruik tries again and fails spending the inspiration :(.
Abomination: "Your threats mean nothing"
Lia casts dancing lights
Lia: "Give us the dwarf or I will unleash my Eldridge magic on you all."
Abomination: "We will give you the dwarf if you promise to leave without anymore the bloodshed. His soul has been temporarily drawn from his body by Yuan-ti Magic. After you leave his soul will be returned."
Lia: "Deal. We agree."
Roland and Ruik go in to pick up the dwarf. Ruik throws the dwarf over his shoulder and we carefully walk out of the dungeon.
They follow at a distance but not too close. The party leaves uneventfully.
Varram is incoherent. The party gags him and Liana checks his bindings. Rurik's medicine roll leads him to think he just needs time. The party takes a short rest and after 4 hours Varram wakes up.
Rurik casts zone of truth, but Varram resists. Celine casts a spell that detects surface thoughts.
Lia: "Where is the white mask?"
Varram: "Why should I tell you?" His surface thoughts flash back to a vision from the pool.
Lia: "We need the white mask to complete the ritual. How could you lose it?"
Varram: (thoughts: who are these people) "Who are you and how do you know about the mask?"
Lia: "You know where we're from. The only value in your life is in telling us where the mask is."
Varram: (thoughts: clueless or lying) "Who sent you? You are not very well informed." (thoughts: if they are from cult then why am I still alive?)
Lia: "Tell us where the mask is."
Varram: (thoughts: seems to be overcome with fear.) "If you were informed by the masters you would know that the cult has the mask."
Lia: "Then what are you doing here?"
Varram: "Using the magical pool to track down the location of the white mask which is with the cult of the dragon. Severin has beat me to it."
Rurik: "Is there any reason why we shouldn't kill you right now?"
Varram: "I may be able to exchange information about cult tactics in exchange for my life."
Rurik: "Does the cult have all 5 masks now?"
Varram: "The black mask was taken from one of our leaders. The other masks are in the possession of Severin and his minions."
Rurik: “What is the cult doing to get that black mask back?” (thoughts: Sense that spies are being sent out to search for it.)
Varram: "I need some assurances for my personal safety."
Rurik: "Are all the preparations for the ritual ready to go?"
(thoughts: armies are being collected. The Draakhorn is part of it. The ritual is not complete yet but getting close.)
The party takes Varram back to Waterdeep and turns him over to the council.
The party picks up the magic items that were on order at Leomund’s Emporium.
- White dragon scale cloak – Amy
- 2 +1 studded leather Armor ready – Amy, Helen
- Flaming 1d6 upgrade – Bryan
- 7 Winged boots – all
All characters are level 9 with 48,000 XP.
At the First Council of Waterdeep, Dala Silmerhelve (Waterdeep noble) told the party that the strange feeling across the Sword Coast are caused by the Draakhorn. Dragons will eventually respond to the call of this horn.
The Sea of Moving Ice is the last known location of the Draakhorn. Tiefling sorcerer Maccath the Crimson of the Arcane Brotherhood was investigating the Draakhorn at the Sea of Moving Ice when she disappeared.
Maccath’s last report to the Arcane Tower was that she was following Ice Hunters paddling towards a huge iceberg. Through scrying, the wreckage of her ship was located. It is known that the lair of powerful dragons are often protected from scrying. The Arcane Brotherhood would be grateful to get Macath back.
History: Ruik has heard of Arauthator, a white dragon in the north nicknamed "Old White Death." He has more than one lair; one is known Oyaviggaton, an iceberg in the Sea of Moving Ice. More than a century ago, during one of the cyclical periods of draconic violence known as the Rage of Dragons,
Arauthator joined with a dozen other dragons in attacking the Hosttower of the Arcane in Luskan. Their assault toppled the west arm of the tower, and Arauthator was seen scooping up numerous items of great magical importance and power, including at least three tomes of rare spells. The possibility of recovering those books is part of what drew Maccath the Crimson to the Sea of Moving Ice.
Celine went to Leomund’s Emporium, and exchanged the 2 giant plate mails for 2 cloaks of protection +1, to be used by Rurik and Sir Roland. Also the party exchanges all of their gems for diamonds as required for use in Rurik’s revivify spell.
Remallia Haventree (Harpers) arranged for cold weather gear and passage on the vessel Frostskimmr, with Captain Lerustah, to the Sea of Moving Ice. The party detoured to Luskan at noon on the 3rd day to visit the Hosttower of the Arcane Brotherhood.
The party speaks with head master Arklam Greith about the mission. He confirms the information provided about Maccath and about the stolen magical tomes. He requests that party recover Maccath and the tomes.
Arklam provides some items to assist the party:
- 6 scrolls of sending (locked to the Hosttower) to share progress.
- 5 potions of greater healing (4d4+4)
- map of the location of the wreckage of Maccath’s ship
Lia visits Leomund’s Emporium North and purchases a cap of water breathing for 500gp in gems.
Frostskimmr sets sail at dusk. After two nights and a day the party reaches the sea of moving ice (at dawn on the 5th day.)
Unfortunately for all involved, Sir Roland attracts the attention of several lonely sailors (Corky McSwaggers and Sharky Fibssomuch).
The party shows Captain Lerustah the map provided by the Arcane Brotherhood. The party begins searching the ice flows for Oyaviggaton. (making a d6 roll 3x/day). Morning and afternoon go by uneventfully.
After much discussion the group decides to spend the night on an ice flow. The crew drags Frostskimmr up on an ice flow and secures it. In the morning and afternoon nothing. As dusk approaches a crew member yells out "Over there. Look!" Celine see a polar bear stalking a wounded Ice Hunter tribesman.
Lia Eldridge blasts the polar bear until it runs off. Captain Lerustah informs the party that Ice Hunters speak Uluik.
Rurik, Sir Roland, Liana, and Celine fly over to the wounded Ice Hunter. Celine casts comprehend languages. Rurik assesses him and is able to splint his leg and stop the bleeding. He uses his lay on hands to heal him fully.
Ice Hunter: “Thank you for saving me.”
Celine: "It is the least we can do. We humanoids need to stick together in environments like this. Can you help us? We seek Maccath the Crimson and the Oyaviggaton Iceberg."
Ice Hunter: (points to the north east). "It is that way. But I warn you to keep away. Old White Death flies around there and eats many a crew that wander by. There is a tribe of my cousins there but they keep to themselves and don't interact with the rest of us."
The party introduces themselves.
Ice Hunter: "My tribe calls me Little Knife. My khyek will get me home."
Morning arrives and the party sets sail and finds nothing for the next two days. Finally on day 6, Oyaviggaton is sighted.
Oyaviggaton has cliffs rising 100 feet above the water to a plateau, then jagged ice peak add another 200 feet above that. There is a 60 foot wide ice shelf with bones, some ribs larger than a human. Liana believes they are from whales and huge seals. The captain pulls Frostskimmr onto the ice shelf. After examining the bones Liana and Lia find smaller human bones. Many bones have a large bite marks suggesting a gigantic predator. (dragon anyone?)
There is an ice chasm splitting the cliff face with obvious stairs carved into the ice. Lia creates an illusion to make it appear as there is a set of stairs above the stairs. The party ascends.
At the top of the plateau there are 10 corpses frozen in the ice. 3 warriors, a dwarf, and 6 Ice Hunters. The top is hilly and uneven. Lia sends her quatsit up a hundred feet and can see that 100 feet down the path is a village. 20 structures make up the village. There are all kinds of tribal people walking around.
The party hears dogs barking from down the path. A few dogs appear and stare while loudly barking and growling. Liana uses her animal handling calm the dogs. The quatsit notices about 50 people from the village is running or walking towards the party.
Celine casts comprehend languages to speak with them. Several come up over the hill.
One is the Chief and the other is the shaman.
Chief: "I Barking Seal. What are you doing on my iceberg?"
Celine: "We are friends of Little Knife. I am looking for an entrance to rescue our friend who may have been taken by the dragon."
Shaman says "I Bone Carver. Old White Death was killed a year ago by frost giants. You can see his bones on the ice shelf below."
Barking Seal: "There is no one here except for us ice hunters."
During the exchange, other members of the tribe start fanning out in a distant circle of 10 on each side. Anyone who looks like a magic user is attracting scornful looks. Some male villagers are going into the big hall. Lia sends the quatsit to follow them.
Liana and Celine knows the bones aren't dragon bones so the story is likely a lie.
Barking Seal: "Is there anything else we can help you with? Or will you be on your way?"
Celine: "I guess we'll be on our way." The party retreats back down the stairs.
In the main building the quatsit sees it has a wooden floor made of planks that appear to be scavenged from ships. The villagers move a large seal skin to reveal a trap door and go down. There is an ice stairs going down 100 feet in a spiral, ending in a chamber carved from ice. In this chamber is a sick villager laying on furs. They make their way through 3 rooms. The first is a store room. The 2nd a room full of junk. In the 3rd they speak with a dozen kobolds.
Lia tries to translate the language to Celine. It is Uluik. Some of the words are intruder, warning, and prepare.
Meanwhile, the party reaches the ice shelf where Frostskimmr is docked. Ice Hunter warriors are watching from a distance. After embarking, Frostskimmr sails away and around to the side of the iceberg.
The quatsit searches and finds an alternate concealed entrance leading to the Shaman’s hut. In the hut there are many animal totems and the shaman is sleeping on the floor.
The party uses the boots of flying to travel to the Shaman’s hut, sneaks in, and grapples with the shaman until he goes unconscious. After binding the shaman, Sir Roland and Rurik carry him down the ice stair. It ends at the center of a rectangular chamber. It is empty except for a dozen baskets. The party puts the shaman behind the baskets.
The passages are 15 feet wide and 20 feet tall with draconic imagery on the walls. It is the fanciest ice cave we've ever seen. Dim lights are lit throughout the place. A lot of vapor rolls through the corridors and causes fog, especially in the lower places.
The party goes down the corridor to the right, descends, and the visibility goes down due to the fog. There is a side passage to the right that opens into a large cavern. Frozen into the ice walls are the bodies of 8 frost giants, 1 fire giant, and 1 cloud giant. They appear to be dead and are displayed as if in a museum. The giants have torn armor and claw wounds. The party notices kobolds polishing and maintaining the ice. They try to run and hide in corners of the room.
The party tracks them down and kills them.
The party continues down the hallway, up, and to the right, skipping a left hand passage. The quatsit notices that the left hand is the first room he went in down the trap door beneath the main village building.
The right hand passage goes down and reveals a dozen giant ice toads scribbling writing on the walls and parchments, and filing items in hundreds of small cubicles carved into the wall. One toad hops over and croaks at the party. Celine recognizes they are speaking Uluik (a toad version of it), so Liana casts speak with animals.
Liana: "Greetings. Looks like you're doing good work here."
Toad: "Oh you speak ice toad. How surprising. How did you come to speak ice toad?"
Liana: "It's my life's work to study natural animal tongues."
Toad: (avoiding temptation to make a tongue pun) "Allow me to introduce myself. I'm Marfulb the chief seneschal of Oyaviggaton (the iceberg)."
Liana: “I am Liana and these are my companions. “
Toad: “We don't often see visitors in the lair. How can I help you?”
Liana: “We are searching for Maccath. We need to question her about some important stuff, if you know what I mean”
Toad: “Why she's just down the hall on the right.”
Liana: “Thank you“
Toad: “I'd advise skipping the first right hand turn as ice trolls can be so impatient. The second right hand turn would be a better choice. If you don't mind can you spell your name? This will be an exceptional story. We never get visitors down here.”
Liana: “What do you do down here?”
Toad: “We run the household. Ensure the supplies are adequate for the master. And that everything is running spic and span. It is our job to know every last thing about the lair.” (after an awkward pause) “Do you have any next of kin you would like us to notify?”
Toad: “Well it will be a mystery what happened to you then.”
Liana: (after prodding from the party) “Oh then please notify Arklam Greith in Luskan.”
Liana: “Do you know the location of the Draakhorn?”
Toad: “Oh the Draakhorn. It was such a beautiful artifact. Alas a group of humans after some negotiations with our master took the device.”
Liana: “Was one of them Severin?”
Toad: “Oh let me think…”
Marfulb goes over and finds retrieves a scroll from cubicle N47.
Toad: “Ah yes. I believe one of the people was associated with Severin. I believe the name was Galvan the Blue.”
Liana: “Do you have a forwarding address for Galvan the Blue to send him a message?”
Toad: “Unfortunately Galvan did not leave his address.”
The party thanks the toads and leaves.
The party follow the corridor down, past the first right passage, up, out of the fog, and to the second right. There is an 80 foot chamber that is empty except for a passage on the right. After this passage is a long narrow cavern with a large shelter seemingly built of scraps, and in the style of the tents used by the desert nomads of Calimshan, some two thousand miles to the south.
The party is surprised by an ice troll attacking from behind. He damages Lia for 5, 9, 14 pts. Lia responds with Hellish Rebuke which rains fire down on the troll for 33 points. After another exchange between Lia and the troll, the troll goes down. Ruik gives Lia back 20 hit points Lay on hands.
The troll surprises everyone by getting up and attacking Lia again for 10 pts damage. This time the party takes down the troll and burns it with the flaming sword.
Celine approaches the shelter and says "Hello. Maccath are you there?"
Female voice: "Why yes. Come in."
Celine sticks her head in and finds the interior surprisingly warm. Seated at a writing desk is a female tiefling. Two kobold attendants are nearby and look nervously at Celine.
Maccath: "Have you come to save me or kill me? Not that there will be much difference between the two."
Celine enters the shelter: "We come on behalf of Arklam Greith who has not heard from you in 3 years and fears you may be dead.”
Maccath: "Clearly I am not dead. You can tell him that. I see then you are here to rescue me."
Celine: "If you wish."
Maccath: "And how to you plan to leave. Arauthator will not allow it."
Celine: "We plan to leave the way we came."
Maccath: "You do not understand. If you leave he will kill you. No one leaves the island alive. He will attack your ship and drown or eat you. I do appreciate the attempt though."
Celine: “Does he like visitors?”
Maccath: “He likes those that serve him or are served to him as a snack. When I first arrived he murdered my crew but proposed a deal to me. I am to translate and interpret the tomes and scrolls that he recovered from the Arcane Brotherhood decades ago. It is quite interesting work. If I am to go out and I may as well accomplish something great before I go.”
Celine: “What about the Drakhorn?”
Maccath: “Ah yes. It was here but humanoids came about 6 months ago to get it and made a deal with Arauthator”
Celine: “Why were they allowed to leave?”
Maccath: “I don't know the specifics. He must have made a bargain with them. The only way for any of us to leave this place is to slay Arauthator. That is quite an accomplishment. Nobody leaves without his permission. Trying to escape on a ship is suicidal.”
Celine: “What if we fly?”
Maccath: “Be my guest if you think you can outrun him. The only way to leave is to kill him. Is that your intention?”
Lia: (showing off her white dragon scale cloak) “Well we have killed a white dragon before, Glazhael.”
Maccath: “Hmmm… If you do want to take a crack at it I can assist you. His lair is on the level below. If you'd like to avoid any more contact with his minions there is a tunnel that leads straight to him in the next room.”
Maccath: (after seeing flying boots) “I see you are well prepared. I have crafted a ring of cold resistance and 2 arrows of dragon slaying that may aid you.”
Celine: “That would be most helpful.”
Maccath: “If you are captured you are to say nothing about my help. Do I have your word?”
Celine: “You do.”
Maccath: “About the lair. This tunnel leads to the west end. There are pools of water that lead out of the cavern that lead to the ocean. He tends to stay towards the west end. Another tunnel after a right and a left from my chambers leads to the east end of the lair.”
Maccath takes the party to a chamber with shelves of items stolen from the Arcane hosttower. The kobolds follow nervously. She warns us not to read the materials. Over here is the tunnel to the lair. Good luck.”
To be continued…