49 Summer, 2979
Lord Agdread pulled a cloth from his pouch and wiped his face clean of the blood that had splattered over him. He then knelt next to the body that still held his sword in its chest and tilted his head in thought. He still felt nothing from the kill; no joy, no sadness. Only a void of emotion. He frowned slightly and then looked at the face of the human on the ground. His face was frozen in terror as he died. At least he died feeling something, thought Agdread.
The lord stood to his feet and surveyed the field of battle. He had not expected to encounter a band of treasure hunters so soon after landing ashore. They were a mix of human and cushani, most likely from Karsari based on their clothing. The battle was quick and efficient which he preferred though the carelessness of the man at his feet did allow a handful of the hunters to escape. The thought should annoy him but once again, he felt nothing. He pulled his sword from the chest of the man and wiped it clean with his cloth before sheathing it. He then placed the bloodied rag over the face of the dead human and offered a prayer to the Winter Wyrm to guide the soul to the River of Souls.
Putting his helm back on, Lord Agdread turned and walked back over to the rest of his men. He withdrew a map from his pouch and unfolded it. He quickly figured the distanced to the ruined city of Iso’Farsh and the location of the dream orb in the southern quarter. The city was sure to be populated but he didn’t care. There was little in the world that gave him pause. He folded the map and stowed it away before turning to a half-orc in black plate armor. “Jouston, get the men ready to move out. We will reach Iso’Farsh by moonrise,” he ordered.
55 Summer, 2979
Cliffside Cave, Iso’Farsh
“Everyone alright?” asked Chaus as he looked at the dragon and then the rest of the group. Everyone appeared to be alright minus the occasional cut or bruise and waved off attempts for healing. Spirits were high in the group. They had just defeated a dragon together. Any doubts that they could not work together were now gone.
“Where to now?” asked Kang to the group as he cracked his knuckles.
Vincent moved over and peered out the hole in the wall that the dragon had made. “There are at least two more dragons in the city. One is to the south,” he said as he made a vague motion towards the looming mansion on the other side of the courtyard. “The other is below at the cliffs. I took a look earlier, it is a pretty steep drop down. It might be easier to head down the hill and loop back around along the beach.”
“Sounds good,” answered SOL as he helped Chaus finish stuffing the dragon horde into the bag of holding. The rest of the group nodded in agreement.
A short time later and with an ample use of shadows, the group made their way through the ruined city of Iso’Farsh to the lower quarter and docks. They easily found a path along the beach that headed back westward towards the cliff. Soon, they found themselves looking up a two hundred foot cliff side. It took a few minutes, but soon they found the cave of the dragon about forty feet up the cliff face. The rain was still coming down, making a climb up rather dangerous.
After a few failed attempts at climbing the cliff, Pen elected to fly up to the cliff and drop a rope down to the group so they could climb up. Once everyone was up at the cave entrance, they drew their weapons and a lantern and made their way inside. The tunnel headed inward at a slight downward slope for roughly forty feet and then opened up into a cavern. At the mouth to the cave were several dead bodies of something roughly humanoid. Upon closer inspection, Pen was able to determine the creatures as cambions, half human, half devil. Chaus pointed out that they had no killing wounds, though their wings had been removed by something sharp.
Cautious, the group then made their way into the cave. They held close to the cavern wall, letting the light slowly reveal the room. After a few moments of slow moving, Vincent caught sight of a pool of blood which he elected to investigate. The rest of the group followed suit. The light soon revealed the body of a huge silver dragon, its head severed from its body. Upon the neck of the dragon was a symbol of the Spring Wyrm which was mutilated by a symbol of the Winter Wyrm. Disgusted, Shan offered a prayer to the Spring Wyrm in apology for not arriving sooner. A quick search of the cave revealed nothing but a few loose coins. The dragon hoard had been taken.
Chaus then called out to the group to a collection of boulders where some blood had run to and under. Carefully moving the rocks, the group found a large passageway downward. Curious as to what they might find, the group began to make their way down. After roughly fifty feet, they immediately noticed that the walls of the tunnel were coated in a slick, greyish slime. Pen examined the slime and once he realized what it was, quickly brushed the slime off his hand. He looked to the group. “Slaadi,” he said with a hushed voice.
With frowning faces, the group pressed on. Only a few feet later, they noticed light coming from a turn in the tunnel. They covered their own light and peeked around the corner to see a group of slaadi of green, gray, blue, and red listening to a man dressed in black spiked ceremonial plate armor. His helm looked like the skull of a black dragon with horns pointed backwards. As the group looked on, the humanoid in the armor stopped talking and peered around one of the slaadi to look right at the group, in particular, Shan’s furry head sticking out. He then spoke in the language of primordial to the slaad, “Kill them,” before turning around and stalking out of the cavern through another passageway.
The slaadi quickly turned around and charged the group. Cursing their luck, the group quickly moved out from the tunnel and met the slaadi head on. The fighting was quick and brutal. The slaadi were able to get the upper hand at the beginning of the fight as the adventurers worked to establish their fighting line and tactics. The slaadi proved to be difficult opponents.
Kang and Vincent handled the slaadi directly while Chaus and Pen flirted around the edges of the fight. Shan and SOL both kept themselves at range which proved to be highly effective. One surprise the slaadi pulled on the adventurers was their ability to manipulate the planar barrier. With the ability to slip in and out of the chaos realm, they could teleport around the combat and even attack by correspondence against the group. Vincent in particular was targeted by these attacks but, for the most part, escaped grave injury.
At the conclusion of the fight, Chaus found that himself and Pen were both infected by chaos phage. The infection, inflicted by the slaadi, impregnated the two with a slaad embryo that would eventually hatch, kill, and then consume the host. Chaus calmed Pen’s fears however, as the infection took awhile to complete its cycle, which was enough time to overcome it. Not completely convinced but willing to accept the statement, Pen and the rest of the group moved forward after the man in black dragon armor.
The new tunnel was not as steep as the last one but was still covered in slime. Considering the last fight that they were in, they all made sure to stick close together and in the center of the tunnel. The dragon knight they followed had a good lead on them though it was easy to follow him since the tunnel didn’t fork off in different directions. They raced down the tunnel until they reach another cave, this one with a small run of water through the center. On the opposite end of the cave were three more slaadi as well as a medusa who was holding a longbow. The group was able to catch a glimpse of the dragon knight as he was leaving the cave through another tunnel.
The slaadi quickly began to teleport across the river to begin the fight with the adventurers while the medusa held back at the edge of the river and sent a volley of arrows. The group moved to engage the slaadi while Chaus decided to confront the medusa directly. SOL and Shan held back and provided ranged support for the group. The medusa, now engaged in melee combat faster than she liked, dropped her bow and drew her longsword in a quick, fluid motion.
The snakes upon her head began to hiss and snap at the cushani as she swung her blade but the cushani held his ground. Seeing that she could not frighten the cushani away, she instead, drew upon the power of her gaze to the group. Her eyes lit up with a sickly pale green color as well as the eyes of each snake upon her head. The group, minus Shan and SOL who were away from the gaze, began to feel their bodies weaken and stiffen though they shrugged off the effects the first time. The medusa, unwavering in her determination to end her opponents, continually began to use her petrifying gaze.
The group, beaten down by the medusa, had a tough time dealing with the slaadi at the same time. Shan and SOL proved to be a huge help as they were not hampered by the medusa and managed to put the finishing explosions on the slaadi. The group then turned on the medusa who gazed right back at them in defiance. As they launched themselves into a flurry of attacks, Pen suddenly stopped moving. He looked down to see that his feet had turned to stone. He looked on in horror as the rest of his body quickly began to succumb to the petrification until only a statue remained.
Horrified by what had just happened, Chaus looked down to his own body and saw that it too began to turn to stone. Defiant to the end, the cushani dropped his bag of holding roared at the medusa as he turned to stone. The rest of the group, stunned by the turn of events, pressed forward and slew the medusa a few seconds later. They then turned and looked at their two allies made of stone.
XP per Player: 1,700 or 1,870 with 10%
Treasure Found: 2,000gp, Death Spiral Ring, Remove Affliction ritual