DragonHawk - Hidden Dragons

Request from Prince

“My City is in bad shape right now. You all have saved us from disaster, but you are also in a unique position to help bring us back from the brink. Your efforts have not gone unnoticed and your words will all have lot of sway. I understand if some of you so not want to work long term in our City, but for near term, I urge you, for all our sakes, to stay and contribute to our recovery. I also know you are probably anxious to go after Craven. I assure you, I am as well, but my duty is here, for now. Until we find out where he is, I have some favors to ask you. The nation will be very grateful.
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> Jerok, I ask you to rebuild the Palace Guard, both in body and spirit. I am afraid they are broken from their failure to stop this attack and protect me. Anyone could refill their ranks and purchase new equipment, but I think right now only you could rebuild their spirit. If you accept I will also have the Captain of the City Guard coordinate with you and hopefully repair both forces.
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> Quill, I ask you to take over Command of our Rangers. We have had an extensive network of rangers all around the Synerg capital. We have lost touch with all of them. Most I hope are in hiding since the Ranger Commander’s death, but I fear it is a false hope. I know you have a quest to Northern Synerg. Perhaps at the same time you take care of that, you can repair the Northern Ranger network and also visit the Keltic Chieftains and Druids across our northern border to re-assure them of our survival. They will likely send aid as soon as they know the fighting is over.
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> Binol, I ask you to quickly talk to the Midori Elves, reassure them of our survival and convey our deepest apologies for the treatment of their merchants. We need those merchants back to fuel our recovery. I will waive all tariffs and fees for a month for those that return. They will need help finding places in the city to set up. I would ask that you organize this. You remain respected by the Synerg Nobles as an Elf that did not desert us. They will give you monetary aid if you ask.
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> Amaryliss, I do not have a great relationship with the leader of the organization you belong to. I implore you to aid us in repairing that relationship. Of the three power centers of the city they have emerged the most untouched. I want to encourage their participation in rebuild and will offer many incentives and make concessions to previous policies. I would also strongly advise them not to take advantage of our current comparative weakness. We need to continue our previous balance of power.
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> Yrock, I know you are not a diplomat, but I think you are in a unique position to aid us in that area. We have rarely had long periods of peace with your peoples. IN our current situation, the last thing we need is an attack from the tribes to the west. Our border forces are mostly untouched, but they are small compared to the many tribes size. Also, we will need many of the troops here. I can’t pull them from the border if an attack might be brewing. Can you travel there and find some way to dissuade their natural inclination to attack use at this opportune moment?
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> All, By some miracle, your missing companions are alive and back on the Earthly plane, though I doubt they are untouched by their experience. Once they have returned I have similar favors to ask of them. I don’t know if Moriah knows this, but she accepted appointment as Mayor of the Capital city when she accepted the magical Medallion from the previous Mayor. I need Bealse help with rebuilding the Merchants Guild and desire Thyunder to establish a new Temple here and perhaps ask Mythagem for aid as his family is not without influence there. Moreover, they both have scores of devoted followers clamoring for word of them. “chuckle”
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Epic Craven Battle

This is how I remember it, please offer corrections…
After a large battle defeating the army of lesser devils before the Palace, the party met the Prince of Synerg’s sons, two half-dragons; Ulrich the wizard and Patrick, the Knight of Siron. They pleaded for the party’s aid to help their Father. After getting aid from the Gnomes in the Temple of the Great Wanderer you and the half-dragons crossed the central bridge in Synerg.
You hear the sounds of battle; you see before you a city on fire. A large oval hemi-sphere of the darkest black hangs over the central part of the city. What at first you thought to be smoke from the fires, you now realize is some magical barrier to sight and who knows what else. (Moriah’s scrying cannot penetrate)
To the north, you can see the 5-story merchant’s guild building burning among the others. A second army of devils along with multitudes of undead surround it, blocking the way north.
Toward the east, just south of the impenetrable black dome, lay the cemetery the Lich had told you to meet her in when she communicated to you in the dungeon.
The party made their way east toward the cemetery. They move past a couple of smaller houses which turned out to hold undead. After dealing with them, came up to the south end of the cemetery. The entrance lay on the west side, but was guarded by undead. The group felt it better to scale / levitate over the fence.
Upon entrance, you see the Lich, Liquwener, standing in the center of the dark graveyard, her attention focused on a gap in the otherwise impenetrable black dome that lay just beyond the cemetery. Her hands are raised toward the done, in an unwavering spell gesture. The gap is actually the back side of some kind of portal, allowing you to see though the dome barrier, but not into the portal itself. You feel waves of vile darkness and evil beyond description emanating of the portal. Tendrils of unknown magic snaked from this oval toward an enormous dragon, seeming to drain his essence away into the void.
Surrounding the Dragon was an army of Devils and undead. They were locked in ferocious combat. The Great Devil the party previously encountered in Craven’s dungeon stood in front of the now collapsed and burning spymaster, (Percy) headquarters. He grappled with the Dragon, while fireballs exploded around them. More devils streamed out of the burning merchant’s guild building on the opposite side of the Dragon. Through the commotion you can surprisingly hear Craven’s voice yelling out viscous commands to the devils. Hundreds of dead bodies surround the Dragon, protectors who have now perished.
In the cemetery, floating beings, half-shadow, half vampire, circle Liquwener protectively. As the party approaches more shadow vampires emerge from the dark places of the cemetery. They quickly surround the party. Someone yells out to the Lich (think it was Jerock or Quill). The Lich turns toward you at the call and the shadow vampire stop motionless just as they were about to attack.
In a voice that is quiet in volume yet cuts through the noise and command you attention as if shouted, she says, “Finally! You have waited until the very last moment! Do your puny brains comprehend what is as stake here!” Her furtively dart to each of you. “Do you have it? Quick you must show it to me!”
After some short, nervous indecisiveness by the party Thuynder ( I believe was carrying the Lich’s book/phylactery ) passes the book to her. The Lich focuses on the book immediately and appears to cast some sort of spell over it. The party did not know what to expect, but the despairing moan that came from the Lich took them by surprise.
“I cannot focus on it. Even now in my hands, Craven’s magic somehow prevents me. So we are lost, and must continue to bend to his will and end things.”
The Book of Nergal that Binoll held then spoke to him. “I know the spell she tried to cast. Perhaps I can do it for her, through you?”
Binoll passed this on to everyone, but the Lich shook her head. “You need Trap the Soul, Soul Bind and Greater Dispel. Do you have all these?”
Nergal had the two necro spells but not greater dispel , but Moriah had that. The party then agreed to cast the spells for her, but the Book of Nergal revealed then to Binoll that the only way to do this was for Binoll to allow it to take control of his body. Binoll agreed and warned the party of this. Jerock kept close watch on Binoll.
During this discussion the assault on the Dragon continues and the Dragons two sons are impatient, and insist the group goes to his aid. The Dragon utters a tremendous roar at that point; to hear a dragon roar is fearsome enough, but to hear one riddled with pain is quite unnerving. The Great Devil’s laugh rolls across the battlefield and ground shakes like the skin of a war drum.
Thuynder’s staff had also been urging him to rush to the Dragon’s aid. Now, the staff will wait no longer, it insists on going now or it will break its word and take over Thuynder.
Thuynder agrees, and as the Binoll/Nergal takes the Lich’s book and casts the spells Thuynder, Ulrich and Patrick race off toward the Dragon.
When Binoll finishes, he looks a bit perplexed, and Jerock is concerned about him, but Moriah steps up and casts the Greater Dispel. At that same moment Craven materializes in the graveyard.
“You fools! I warned you not to trust this creature. Now give me the Book.” He gestures to the blue Book which suddenly flies out of Binoll’s hand toward Craven.

“No!” Faster than the blink of an eye, the Lich flashed across the tombstones and intercepted the flying book. She disappeared before touching the ground.
At that moment, the undead in the city turned against their former allies, the Devils. The shadow vampires fled the graveyard (and Craven) to join the battle.
Craven was livid. :I will kill you all, grind your bones to dust, and turn your souls into screaming masses of burning despair! And then I will retrieve the Book, end the Lich and your efforts will all have been in vain.”
The battle with Craven starts then as the party attacks and he responds with spells.
Meanwhile, Thuynder, Ulrich and Patrick fight their way through to the Dragon. It is a tough fight, but thanks to the Staff granting protection from Fire, Thuynder makes it through, taking out a few enemies in the process. The Dragon lies in the center of blackened and desolate area. The Devil now sits atop the ruined spy headquarters watching his minions finish the job. He shows no concern for the three newcomers.
Tendrils of darkness still feed off the Dragon and snake toward the open maw of vile darkness floating nearby. From this side Thuynder can only see the deepest darkness. The Dragon dies and his sons howl in despair. The Staff however, demands to be brought to the Dragon. It believes it can Raise him from the dead (Special Dedicated power of Intelligent magic item)
The Devil flies off the building and lands abruptly in the midst of Craven’s battle with the party. His sudden appearance brought an anxious pause to the battle as the party feared they would have to battle the both of these powerful foes at the same time.
The Devil rumbles out a command to Craven. “I must interrupt your play time here. My agreed upon task is done, the Dragon is dead. I demand my payment.”
(The party will remember that in the lowest layer of the dungeon they had encountered the Devil and learned he had made a pact with Craven to protect the Book and it other guardians and also kill the Dragon in the final battle. The Devil had tried to get the party to help him break out of this agreement.)
Craven, a little surprised at how long it was taking to kill these trouble makers offer the Devil double if he kills the party. HE refuses. “My payment now or your protection ends.”
Craven grimaces; “It lies in the second level of my retreat, in a secret room, off the Necromancer’s room. It lies buried in the floor and will reveal itself at the password –Triumph.” The Devil instantly teleports away and Craven turns to attack the party again. He uses Death touch, blasphemy and other spells. His armor hurts anyone who attacks him though Yrock seems to be able to resist the effect of the armor.
Thuynder reaches the Dragon and uses the staffs magic to Raise the Dragon from the dead. Ulrich and Patrick guard Thuynder from the surrounding devils while he does this. The Dragon opens his enormous eyes and focuses on Thuynder, staring into his soul.
“You are touched by the Dragon above” the Dragon whispered in wonderment. “I know what brought you here, even though I am in awe of it, but your efforts and His are in vain. I am too weak to survive unless this portal closes. It is meant to me and will close upon my entrance, but I would perish forever in that Shadowy plane of Death and Craven and his devils would have free reign here.”
Thuynder asks if there is anything he could do to close the portal. The Dragon stares at him for along moment before responding. “You could fool the portal into thinking I had entered; you and your Staff have the Dragon essence, but you yourself are not powerful enough, it needs to feel a great and powerful soul entering. Perhaps if there were another of you, another good soul, a cleric perhaps, it would be enough.”
Thuynder immediately thought of Jerock and the staff agreed. Thuynder explained his idea to the Dragon.
“Yes, this might work. IF you do this for me, I will do my best to get you back and restore you to life.”
Thuynder and the Staff make their decision and head back to the party stumbling right into the battle with Craven.
Quill made some amazing shots with his bow that hurt Craven. Jerock and Binoll hurt him with spells and Yrock had cut him with his axe, but he seemed unstoppable. So far Jerockand Beales were keeping everyone alive with healing spells, but he was nearly out of healing energy.
The Devil reappeared then, but was double his previous size and glowed with an angry magic energy. “YOU DARE TO CHEAT ME?” it roars. “IT IS NOT THERE.”
Craven himself then grew larger and yelled back, “I do not break my word, ever! These interlopers tramped through my retreat. They must have taken it…” but as the Devil turns toward you, the Dragon roars as it reneges in battle.
Craven trembled with rage. “you dare to accuse me when you have failed to finish your task? Either you are a liar and a cheat, or you are stupid enough to leave behind a body to be raised.”
The Devil stared toward the Dragon in shock, “I will finish him for all eternity this time.” He spread his wing and flew toward the Dragon. This time the party did not wait, they attacked Craven the moment the Devil spread his wings.
Thuynder arrived soon and offered his aid while trying to explain what needed to be done. At the same time the Lich reappears.
Craven bellows at her, obviously losing control of himself, “I am going to destroy you and the very memory of you will be wiped from this plane or any other you dishonorable beast!”
The Lich cast strong ropes of black energy at Craven while sending a mental message to the party that Craven is too strong while the portal is open. They must find a way to close it.

Thuynder in frustration yells out, “I have been trying to tell them I know how to do that!”
The party quickly confers in between attacks. Jerock feels he is too vital in standing up against Craven to leave,(the The Great Warrior’s influence is driving him to not leave a battle that is joined), but Beales gloriously volunteers, as he is partly a cleric of The Great Wanderer and a holy bard.
Unfortunately, after the arrival of the Lich, large number of devils swarmed around and into the graveyard, apparently summoned by Craven. There was no way to fight their way through so many.

Moriah had been supporting the party with her spells and staying clear of Craven’s deathly spells, but now she saw her chance to really help. She had her flying spell active. She cast Bull strength on herself, then grabbed Thuynder and Beales and flew them over the masses of attacking Devils. They flew straight toward the black portal and Moriah let go of the two at the right moment for them to arc through the portal. When she tried to veer up to avoid the portal herself though, the tip of her feet caught the edge, and she entered along with the two of them. The portal collapsed moments after entry.
The Lich and her enthralled undead were able to keep the masses of devils back while the others fought Craven. He was seriously hurt by now, but he still had no fear of them. That changed when the portal disappeared. He screamed, despair, terror and pain in his voice all at once.
As Yrock swung back to land a killing blow on the now kneeling Craven, he somehow teleported away. The party was furious at his escape.
At the disappearance of the portal, the black dome covering the city disappeared. The Dragon roared a new kind of roar, a triumphant, somehow prayerful roar.
At that point the Heavens opened up in a thousand tiny stars (though it was daytime) and hordes of celestial beings, angles, poured onto the battle field. They drove the devils back, destroying or banishing them. The Dragon clashes with the boss Devil with renewed strength. It was over in a few short minutes, viscous destructive but short minutes.
As the celestial beings finished the battle and cleaned out the city, the Dragon descended on them, landed menacingly right in front of the Lich, staring eye to eye with her.
They negotiated back and forth (I forgot the exact words) and it seemed that the Dragon had forgiven her involvement, placing the blame fully on Craven, but when she refused to make a promise, he suddenly and unexpectedly destroyed her. Spitting out the pieces of the Lich before the party (Binoll, Jerock, Amaryllis, Yrock and Quill) be addressed them, “She is not destroyed. She knows I know of her other bodies and phylacteries. This was a lesson to her to stay out of my Kingdom.
The Dragon Prince then gave the party his eternal gratitude especially the three who entered the portal. Jerock asked if there was anyway to rescue them. The Dragon told them, no. It was almost certain that they had perished in the other Plane, but he would try to resurrect them after he put his city in order and regained his strength.
-————
The moment they entered the portal Shadows grasped at them and drain some of their strength. Thuynder tries to use his staff to plane shift away, but he cannot maintain his concentration. Beales and Thuynder cannot focus on cleric spells, but they still feel their god, though distantly. Moriah is dazed and confused, but can cast her spells. The plane is an endless plain black shadows flickering like candles flames from one fire to the next. Hundreds of shadow creature surround them, but are confused and do not attack. It seem the three adventurers were not what they expected.
They immediately engage and destroy the Shadows attacking them, but the activity bring more shadows and they must fight them off as well.
An NPC (a cleric they rescued in the bottom level of Craven’s dungeon had recently taught Jerock how to use his turn undead to slowly fill an area with positive holy energy which would bless an area and remove or suppress negative, evil influences. Jerock had taught this to fellow clerics Beales and Thuynder
After some battling with more shadows they notice the shadows arriving are getting stronger. In the distance they see a giant shadow approaching and behind him, something the size of a mountain moves. They realize, they have very little time.
Now, Beales begins to use the turn undead ability to surround the area with positive energy, hopefully enabling Thuynder to use his staff to plane shift them back to their home plane. This leaves Moriah and her spells to keep them safe, free from shadow touch until enough positive energy can be released and Thuynder can concentrate.
She manages to fight off the giant shadow, but the mountainous shadow nears ever closer…
-

As everyone pitches in to clear the city Jerock grows concerned about Binoll. When he presses him for answers he reveals that during the spell casting on the Lich’s book, Binoll’s soul ended up in Nergal’,s book and Nergal in Binoll’s body. Nergal claims not to know how this happened. and aid the wounded, one of the Celestial angels approaches the party. He seems very interested in Binoll. With his help, Jerock’s concerns are confirmed. In fact, the Celestial being knew of this Nergal, and expressed grave concern about his spirit still being active in the world. After much negotiation, Nergal agreed to not fight the spell to remove him from Binoll, and the Angel restored Binoll to his body, but took possession of the Book of Nergal. Binoll was disappointed to lose Nergal’s knowledge, but was relieved to be free of his evil influence. (He did however, retain many of the spells Nergal had taught him.)
I forget how the main party found out that Thuynder, Beales and Moriah were still alive, (the Dragon prince?) but they did get word that those three were alive, back on this plane, but far, far to the north.
Thuynder, Beales and Moriah had plane-shifted, luckily, to this right continent, only around 500-1000 miles from their friends. In fact they were close to Mythagem. So after some rest, Moriah flew them into the Mythagem mountains and Thuynder’s family connections there got them aid and a place to rest. The next day he arranged for a teleport to Synerg to rejoin their friends and help the city and the Dragon Prince of Synerg.
Their time in the Shadow plane however, had not left them unaffected, ..far from it.

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Gnomes help after demon battle

So the Gnome clerics were not equipped for battle but have plenty of healing
spells – so you should all have your wounds healed to full without expending
further spells.
Binol wants to quickly ask if there are any scrolls in the temple that we can have to help save the Prince.

“Many of us are spent, and without time to sleep, are limited in our ability to form an effective offense. Do you have any scrolls that we can utilize in your temple that would be fitting for a wizard or cleric?”

one Gnome will run in quick and blindly grab some other scrolls while the Rogues talk.

Scroll case – Prayer ©, Plane Shift ©, Freedom of movement (B), Mind Fog
(B), Greater Shout (B) and Veil (B). C = cleric only, B= bard only

Thunder notices that Black Pearl is magical…

- At same time he hands a bag of scrolls to you as fellow Gnome cleric

and says loud enough for all to hear – “Here are some” (with a shudder) “evil
scrolls we picked up in the fighting – will you destroy them for us?”
Bag of evil scrolls – Energy Drain, Control Undead, Magic Jar, Enervation x2 ,
Halt undead x 5, Soul bind.

Group destroys scrolls.

Dragon roars and sounds of a building collapsing are heard in distance.

As soon as heals are made and ice walls are gone, Ulrich the wizard and Patrick,
the Knight of Siron want to rush across to aid the Prince. They both have
strange accents that mark them as from Siron, a human kingdom far to the north,
by the northern coast. They also both have obvious signs of reptilian / dragon
blood. (Slightly scaly skin, cat-like pupils…)

As you make to cross the bridge a gang of Rogues dash across it. One of them
recognizes Amaryllis and wants to talk to her…

Also Binol has private converstaion with “Book”

Book also says in a whisper….

“Let me take you over and I can cast all my spells!!!” Then with an Eager
maniacal laugh it says “I’ll let you have control back later….”

Binol- "
“I don’t think I will let you do that! I will never give up control of my body
to someone else’s will”.

Book – “OK, ok, I was just offering. We make a good team; I don’t want to
upset you. Forget I said anything?”

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Moriah's vision

A pale red moon hangs over a dreary landscape of dirty buildings. I see people milling around those dilapidated buildings, aimless, moaning lowly, as if too tired to protest. They are dirty, unkempt and despair fills their eyes.

A low smoke hangs over the scene, filling the empty spaces between the people. Fires burns along the streets where some people have gathered to keep warm. Others wander between the fires, the cold not touching them.

I notice, from time to time a passing recognition comes over their faces when they see each other in the dim light. They approach, nod at each other and grasp hands or hug. At the first touch though, the pair rapidly separate as if the coldness of the grave is felt.

No one is working, no one is smiling and no one exhibits any signs of caring. I see children, but no one plays, or laughs. The stores are closed, except for a few stands of food…. Few buy food though.

I see a fight break out, a sword flashes and cuts a man. His blood flows bright against the gray light. He returns the blow and severs a man’s arm, but blood does not flow. The two collapse, as if exhausted. The gathered crowd watched the collapsed bodies in apparent anticipation. 5 minutes pass, 10 minutes, 15. Then the two brawlers climb awkwardly to their feet and the crowd moans in despair and deep disappointment.

I hear a rustle of movement at the far end of the street. I see a large retinue of well dressed people striding confidently down the street. Craven walks in their midst.

He surveys the people and seems proud, like a painter proud about a completed masterpiece. A man steps up to him and raises a sword. “You did this to use! You stole our lives!” He raises the sword to strike, but Craven glances at him; his eyes darker than the darkest pit of Hades. What little life filling the man evaporates like dew in the sunlight. His pale body shrinks back against the wall and he stays there, motionless.

Craven turns to the crowd, but does not use his power on them. Instead, he speaks, “You are an ungrateful lot. Through the Power of my Lord, Death I have granted life to all of your departed loved ones. We all live here now, without death because the land of the Dead and the Living are Joined. We need never be separated from our loved ones ever again. And all you ungrateful retches can think to do is complain about your contribution. If you have complaints, I dare you to walk up to the Palace and ask the Lord Death to help you.”

If the crowd appeared apprehensive at all before, it became ten-fold at the mention of the Lord Death. I looked toward the Palace myself, and felt myself speed toward it. I saw a Great Black Dragon of Death and Shadow there. It stared back at me with divine power and somehow knew I was there.

NOTE – do not speak this part – ‘The trance breaks at that point and Moriah returns to herself.”

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Craven monologue

Who do you think you are? Why are you here? What do you want? Why have you come down here into my private sanctum and destroyed everything? For you have destroyed much here, much more than many would think possible for you. Myself included…

I ‘AM’ impressed … You are quite capable. But I am also dismayed, appalled even at the waste. You, (pointing at Yrock) the strength of your arms is matched only by the strength of your determination. And you (pointing at Binoll) your genius is apparent in the powerful spells you have used against your enemies. And you (pointing at Moriah) a more beautiful and charming genius I have never seen; I am sure you have proven that victory can be achieved without the strength of arms.

All of you have definitely achieved greatness. From the devious tricks of the Gnome, Beasles is it?, to the extraordinary skills of this small person (gesture to Amyrillis) and the wise guidance of your clerics, (looks long at Jerock) the guard who “respects?” the rule of law and (Looks at Thynder) and elf with a sword fights with the ferocious of a dwarf… <pause> Thyunder isn’t it?, you are different, changed…<peer> Dragon worship? Really? My, my, what a strange twist of events. Indeed.

Yes, I know all about all of you. There is not a lot my spies cannot uncover, at least the ones left after you killed them. The cousin of Binoll there, the Ranger responsible for your superbly successful tactics, was one of the hardest; but even the solitary leave a trail, if you know how to look. Fitting that you travel with family, for I know your family connections and where they live as well.

Mmm, yes, but back to my first comment. It is a tragic waste of talent. Adventurers you may be, but HAVE you never wanted a focus in your life?, a reason for living?, to make a difference this world beyond just defeating the next monster and getting more gold or magic? Why not do something with your skills instead of tromping through my private center of operations? What right do you have? DO you not have respect for the rule of law? Why have you come down here if not for gold and fame then?

The book? That is your plan? Intriguing, yes quite devious in fact. Again you dismay me. But think about it. You are doing this the bequest of a creature of UNDEATH. A lich is created with the strongest of evil acts and evil powers. You would chose to aid a creature like this why? Promises of gold or power? To aid such a creature against the force of law and justice, is not an act of goodness.

You think you have valid arguments, but you are misled and foolish adventurers. You think an ancient intellect such as this Lich could not or would not lead you down a path of her own choosing, A path of destruction? Did you know she is thousands of years old?

I am the protector here. I am The force for law, order, and justice. There is great wrong-doing in Synerg and I mean to see an end put to it; let justice be done not the will of a Lich. <shake>

I do have to admit your interference has altered my plans somewhat, and added an element of risk, where before it was foolproof. I have lost most of my spies, but can make do with the ones I have left. My primary connection to the barbarian tribes is dead, but I have others. My Chaotic elves stopped negotiating with me, but I have other ways to gain their assistance. You stole a large portion of my magical weapons and let the elves take them, but I have enough remaining. You uncovered my faked rejection of the elves by the people of Synerg, but I still achieved my desired result and they will be gone long enough. You revealed and destroyed my doppelganger replacements, but I had achieved my goals by then, so it was of little consequence. In fact, you cleared up a loose end for me there, so I owe you thanks.

Adapt and Overcome is my motto and I have. I WILL still prevail, and you, you are stuck down here where you cannot interfere. Ironic is it not, I built such an impenetrable fortress down here, that you cant get out and I myself cannot get in…but then you have help in that area, don’t you. Care to tell me how you convinced the Balnorn to aid you?

I have proposition for you, I will provide you a way out, afterward, if you will do something for me. I in fact, need some assistance in getting the book. Some of the creatures I arranged to guard the book have proven to be… unmanageable. I can no longer deal with them. They are very good at lying and manipulating to reach their own purposes despite any binding agreements they may have made.

Now I know what you are thinking, but I intend to give the book back to the Lich, in my own time, which is to your benefit, if you think about it. She is not a trustworthy creature and it is best to return her property in such a way that she can not take retribution on us or the town.

Oh, and please don’t be fool hardy enough to destroy the book… You cannot imagine the owner’s (Lich’s) rage if you would. I don’t fear for myself, or my even my plans, they will succeed either way, but I fear for the town, for the lives of the people that live here. The vast majority of the town residents would not survive the calamity that would result.

Yes, my plans will succeed and my destiny will come to fruition . Time is short now, which is why I will not come down there and greet you personally. So consider yourselves invited guests; dance the dance of death with the other guests, and if you fare well, we will speak again.

<interruption> <looking> Irritated sigh.. yes, if you will cease your complaining about your death…..yes?… good! <back> I have a message for you before I go; Therena passes her fondest wish for your survival, she wants you to stay very much alive until she can kill you herself. She promises a very slow death. <shrug> I cannot stand her way, since you killed her first, it is a just request.

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Getting the Book

Well I already gave out the 5000 for the Half Fiend Cleric.

Role playing Bonuses;

Jerok, Beales – Roleplaying with Devil – 500XP saving kids from Forbiddance spell

Binol – Idea for Servitude instead of soul – 500XP

Thynder – Use of rods to open shields and convincing others to take on knowledge shield – 500XP

Moriah, Binol , Thuynder – defeating Knowledge shield – 1000 XP

Quill, Jerok, – detecting, fighting Rakasha and saving kids – 1000XP

Beales – 500XP -

Amrliys – 500 XP for disabling symbols

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Message from Great Warrior in Dungeon

…”Normally, that spell would have only worked on beings similar to humans. I will not be empowering that spell for you again, a cleric of your wisdom and experience should know better. Your turn undead uses for the day are used up, powered to convert this Spell. You may be able to learn to apply this conversion on your own in a similar manner in the future, if you continue to please me. Continue fighting valiantly in my name, a great glorious conflict approaches and many of my followers are being drawn to the area. Beware the Great Death’s Priest you strive against. Death’s divine attention and power is fully focused on him and the coming conflict."

The Great Warrior


Original Message——-
From: Timothy Asplin [mailto:tjammer21@hotmail.com]
Sent: Friday, March 25, 2011 4:51 PM
To: Al&Theresa Hoffman; John&Carol Romanus; John Romanus; Matt Asplin; russcobraball@hotmail.com; Sarah Ball
Subject: DND

After our fight with the female Abyssals last game, Jerok gets a message from his deity, The Great Warrior. “Jerok, I know you’ve been frustrated lately with the past few conflicts you’ve had. I wanted to inform you that I empowered your last holding spell so that it would have an effect on the being you asked me to cast it on. Normally, that spell would have only worked on humans, or beings like yourself. I will not be empowering that spell for you again, a cleric of your wisdom and experience should know better. Continue fighting valiantly in my name”.

Realizing how lucky he got being able to hold a monster with a hold person spell, Jerok sits down to study and meditate in hopes of coming across a better way to utilize his divine given power. While deep in study and meditation the party is startled as Jerok suddenly lets out a groan and smacks his forehead. While he has the attention of the party, Jerok explains:

“I apologize to everyone, I could have made these last few fights less frustrating. I forgot about a very important, yet very basic/easy spell. I’m sure everyone recalls how our weapons hit, but don’t do as much damage as they seem they should. I need to be Aligning our weapons as Good weapons. This bypasses the damage reduction of many evil outsiders. I’ll definitely be using this next time we fight.

Thynder! Make sure you use this as well!"

With a sigh, Jerok sits back down continuing his meditations…feeling much better about the next fight. One thing still seems to be troubling him. The female abyssals warned that we should not try to fight the spiny/spiky monsters in melee range. Trying to use his wisdom and common sense, Jerok thinks about Moriah’s desciption of the spikey monsters, trying to understand what they would do that would make them so devastating in melee. Then, a scene pops into his mind, almost as if by divine origin. Not something from memory…almost as if it were someone else’s memory. Jerok chuckles to himself as he watches the scene unfold in his mind…an extremely small, plain dressed man trying to wrestle with a scorpian. The chuckle fades away as he imagines the scorpian with barbs, and spikes like the upcoming monsters have been described. “That’s it!” he thinks…but what good will Align Weapon be if our best melee fighters are being grappled by these spikey monsters?

A grin spreads across Jerok’s face the same time the idea spreads across his mind…“They’ll never see this comin’”!

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Rakashas room in dungeon
Bealse, Amaryliss, Yrock entered the room, and immediately notice the

> room looks different.
>
> The polish on the floor and wall is gone, replaced by dust and dirt.
> Rock instead of painted walls. The fine china that was on the table is
> now old and cracked. The jeweled goblet no longer sparkles and appears
> ordinary silver with simple garnet gems. A search of the closet found
> silk clothing and a small one-inch version of the keg that Bealse and
> Amaryliss drank from. The bed covering no longer shined either, the
> gems in the sheet now just colored circles of fabric. Under the bed
> wrapped in the bundle of fabric, she finds a bastard sword and a katana.
>
> The others come in during the search of the chest under the table, which
> after opened revealed all the jeweled combs, scrolls and gold I
> described in the other email. The detect magic reveals the swords, keg
> and scrolls are magical.
> The altar now shows and many reliefs in the alter depicts a battle.
> They reveal more of Ba-La-Na’s kind in battle with monkeys and a
> ten-headed version of Ba-la-na, named Ravana, standing over a friend
> named, Kumbhakarna, slain with arrows. Before them bows a monkey with
> a crown, but another strange humanoid with four arms and a bow is
> pulling the monkey king back.
>
> A while after the battle, Yrock, Moriah and Amaryliss start to feel
> weak, and suffer -1 to all stats. Also Bealse and Amaryliss feel
> strange. You feel heavy, tired and distracted. (speed 1/2,
> listen/spot – 10, Reflex and will -5, no dex to AC.)
>
>
> Quill – didn’t say it at time, but you took should have taken damage
> when you scouted the level and found the other guardians of keys. You
> entered an area that SIN-ON did not work. It was when you stood near
> doorway of big room and peered in. But since I forgot, then you
> automatically made your will save for half – still you took 13 damage.
>
>
>
>
>

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Fight after Shields are down

Binol, Thynder, and Moriah tackled the shield of knowledge. They answered enough questions successfully to pass the test.

WBetween the 4 of them it worked out so you don’t have to fight the guardian. Moriah got 1 question, Binol got 2, Thynder got one, and the Staff got another.

Beales had his head in the knowledge shield too, but it didn’t ask him any questions. The Knowledge Shield first tries to charm Beales; failing that it tries to bribe him to become a Chronicler for the history of the Great King because all have forgotten him. He offers great knowledge (Immediate + 5 to Bardic Knowledge and + 10 knowledge ancient history)

The scrolls are hidden under the coffin, you would have to retrieve them, read them and commit to translating for other scholars.
Beales,: "I assume, is communicating telepathically? He does not see a conflict with what this “intelligence” is offering-surely no member of the party would think Beales could turn this down, even with no bribe. Beales’ only question is how to get the scrolls without disturbing the sarcophagus. Specifically, are they buried under the coffin, in a compartment in the coffin, is the coffin on a pedestal and the scrolls just laying underneath in a tube-what is required to get the scrolls? As part of the deal, what is required to get the adamantine box off the pedestal previously belonging to the Great King? Is there a sense (motive?) that this is all a ploy to get the supposedly evil being released from his tomb? He is not only willing, but excited at the proposition to learn history! If it is a simple process to get the scrolls (I’m sure it won’t be!), he will tell everyone that he was contacted by the essence of the force field, who could tell the end was near, and could tell Beales would be interested in preserving history. If it’s not a simple process, honestly, he would be even more frantic to want to get the scrolls to preserve the story. Side note, not that it matters, someone cast true seeing on Beales long before they got to the children-it ran out before they got to them he will tell everyone that he was contacted by the essence of the force field, who could tell the end was near, and could tell Beales would be interested in preserving history.

" As part of the deal, what is required to get the adamantine box off the pedestal previously belonging to the Great King? " The other three did this by answering historical and religious questions (Knowledge rolls)

You Sense only the motive to preserve its legacy. You can tell that the Positive Energy filling the room has a calming effect on the Being.

BTW Thynder was jabbing the box with the dagger (without touching it) for 5 mins or so before the others returned.
Considering the questionable actions of Thuynder with the staff and Bnoll with the book, Beales is cautious about proceeding, but he is really into gaining more knowledge. The lure is more than enough to offset the risk. He is looking forward, between this information & the books back in the room, to getting that honorary doctorate from The Traveling Bardic Institute for the Preservation and Advancement of Cultural and Indigenous Customs, Practices, and Knowledge

After extensive and careful search Beales and the Halfling can find no hidden compartment near the sarcoughucous. Thyunder’s magic vision tells you that the pedestal holding up the Box of Book is magical. Probably the source of the Knowledge Shield. A careful search there leads Amaryllis to believe there is a mechanism on the top of pedestal that probably activates something in the next room, but she cant activate that without touching the box (to move it).

While they were doing that, Quill and Jurok were leading the children up to the 2nd level to join the other escapees we freed. Quill noticed one of the children was lagging behind. When he went back to check on her he became charmed, and the child cast magic missile on Jurok. Jurok told the other children to get behind him so he could stand between the magic weilding child and them. He then cast True Seeing and found that the child was actually a Rakashah (spell resistant, evil, tiger headed monster that we’ve fought before). Jurok dispels the charm from Quill, and cast blade barrier around the Rakashah, while it pummels Jurok with magic missiles. Jurok tells Quill to get the kids to safety while he heals himself, then casts spell resistance on himself. The Rak takes damage going through the blade barrier, and comes forward to attack Jurok. By this time, Quill is back, and Jurok casts Align Weapon on 50 of Quill’s arrows. Quill starts raining arrows on the Rak. It casts mirror image and retreats. Jurok follow slowly, and manages to harm it with a Searing Ray. After a few rounds, the others come upstairs to see what’s taking us so long, and because of the telepathic link, Jurok is able to let Moriah know about the fight. Jurok then discontinues the Blade Barrier spell so they can join the fight. This proves too much for the Rakashah. It casts haste on itself, and runs down the hall, but takes damage from everyone’s attack of opportunity. Thynder charges after it in anger, gets a critical hit of 30 damage (bypassing the 15 damage reduction of good/piercing by 15 points), and finishes it off. Jurok goes to the inform Newman, the kids, and the other ex-prisoners that the magic casting child was a Rakashah, and that we defeated it.

That’s where we left off. We need to get some ideas for dates for the next game! Jurok still wants to examine that altar.

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Thyunder finds Staff of Dragon

When Thynder grabs the Staff -— he goes catatonic, limbs rigidly locked,
staring at the staff, gripped tightly in both hands. He says nothing so you
know nothing about the staff, he does not respond to any questions or speaking.
>
>
> After few minutes he begins to shake slightly and sweat. His face grows very
pale, the blood draining from it. His breathing though is deep and full.
>
> [The Staff itself is a masterwork Quarterstaff, with metal shod ends. The
metal ends have gems embedded in them, amethysts. The amethyst seemed to be cut
to provide sharp points.]
>
> The gems on the Staff begin to light up and his lips begin to mumble
unintelligible words. (Does anyone speak Draconic?)
>
>
Jerok’s feelings were a bit hurt by having a fellow brother leave the faith, and was feeling quite obstinate toward him. To bring to light the thoughts going through his mind:

“oh! gonna leave the Great Warrior eh? well then, he won’t need this anymore (holy symbol), and with his nice new fancy staff (sarcastic tone), he won’t need this either (greatsword +2)!”

From what I remember, Thynder’s response at the time was “Fine with me, I really don’t care”.

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