Chapter Fourteen: Halls of Ruin (Part 1)

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Summary

Watcher’s Rest, Sanctuary

  • the heroes attend Zerefin’s funeral where they have bagpipes playing funeral songs
  • Ellestriel, Zerefin’s widow, tells Ezekiel not to blame themselves after Ezekiel tries to apologize for not arriving in time to save him, but doesn’t look sure that she really believes that
  • heard rumors that a dark elf by the name of Virion Vanmarthak would likely become the new Lord Protector
  • Kronus finds the heroes and tells them that it could be him in that casket if they hadn’t gone to the Black Spire
    • he also says that the party’s ship looks familiar, asks if he may have a look around it
    • he finds that the control sphere of the ship is actually the Trevusphere, an artifact that can be used to locate any treasure
    • seeing the sphere jogs his memory and he remembers that the ship used to belong to Harken Hawk
    • Kronus explains that the stronger connection to the item you’re looking for, the easier it is to home in on it
  • Ezekiel asks Tarkonus to see if he can find the stones with the Trevusphere
  • Tarkonus uses the Trevusphere, and his eyes go blank as he grips the sphere
    • he sees the blue gem, the Spirit of the Sky, is back west in the Imperial capital of Harthanmoor around Seraphina’s neck
    • he finds the black gem is in the same city, but the vision is cloudy and he’s not sure who has it
    • and his vision crosses the world and dives deep into a familiar place to him, the Halls of Tharum Tor in the south
      • he sees an armored dwarf sitting on a throne with a yellow gem, the Light of Dawn, in his hand
      • the dwarf has two burning yellow eyes that turn to him and he says, “I see you,” in a distorted voice
    • Tarkonus releases the Trevusphere in a cold sweat and explains what he saw
  • news from the north is grim, the Red Dragonflight has ravaged most of Greyfell and is pushing towards Delrune’s capital
  • Ezekiel and Azeem asked Virion if he would be interested in forming an alliance with other nations, like the dwarves of Kor Garan and the men of Elemey
    • he said if he could convince them, then sure, but doesn’t seem very enthusiastic or cooperative

Caerwyn, Elemey

  • the party makes a short stop to speak with Queen Siana, who receives them warmly
  • they have dinner and the party explains about the gems and asks Siana if she’d be willing to form an alliance to stop the Empire and the Red Dragonflight
  • she agrees and gives them writs with her royal seal and makes them official ambassadors

Tharum Tor, Kor Garan

  • the heroes fly to the dwarven mountain ranges to the south
  • Tarkonus had been to Tharum Tor four decades ago, and he remembers where the entrance gate into the mountain is there should be a small town for receiving guests and travelers
  • they find the town and the gate, but it’s all in ruins
    • seems they’ve been destroyed for 15-20 years
  • they travel deep into the dwarven halls and find bones and broken armor, cracked weapons, the entire stronghold in ruins
  • as they make their way through the cavernous halls and across the massive bridges, they find packs of demons and devils
  • eventually, they arrive at the throne room and find a single being, the former dwarven king, Bardrok Kragmaul, now an immortal death knight
    • on the arm of his throne sits a shining, golden gem, the Light of Dawn
    • they ask him to fight with them against the dragons and the Empire to redeem himself
    • King Kragmaul says he shall test them first
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Chapter Thirteen: Siege of Sanctuary (Part 3)

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Summary

Watcher’s Rest, Capital of Sanctuary

  • the heroes face off against Gorram Man-breaker and the elite warriors of the Bleeding Hand, the Orog-hai
  • Corbin cuts down each of the Orog-hai warriors as fast as they can come at him
  • Tarkonus is thrown around like a rag doll by the warchief
  • Azeem finishes Gorram with an enchanted arrow that he fired out the window of one building, across the streets and the canal, through another window into a different building, and through the warchief’s skull, blasting it apart
  • Ezekiel checks Zerefin and finds that he’s succumbed to his wounds
    • recovers his body and his sword, Baxicurel
  • with the warchief defeated, Sanctuary’s army manages to fight off the Horde of the Bleeding Hand, who slowly retreat from the field

Chapter Thirteen: Siege of Sanctuary (Part 2)

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Summary

The Fields Outside of Watcher’s Rest, Sanctuary

  • the green dragon Shadowthorn emerges from the river and ambushes the party
    • Azeem finally uses his magical arrows, which streak though the air like shooting stars, and together the party cripples Shadowthorn’s wing
    • Corbin’s sword Moonfall effortlessly slices through the dragon’s hide
    • Tarkonus saves Corrac, who’s almost killed by the dragon’s deadly poison breath
    • Ezekiel unleashes a literal storm of lighting, and finishes Shadowthorn with a bolt of lighting as the dragon tried to flee back into the river
  • Ezekiel takes some of the dragon’s webbing
  • Tarkonus finds nothing but rusty swords in the dragon’s belly
  • Corrac carves off a few of the dragon’s scales
  • the Imperial dreadnought continues to approach as does one more storm cloud covering the orc advance
  • they fight their way back across the battlefield to the city

Watcher’s Rest, Sanctuary

  • the heroes meet Zerefin at his command post in the city square
  • the entire city is rocked by a huge explosion that came from the last storm cloud, and they see huge chunks of the city’s wall go flying into the air
  • Zerefin rushes towards the wall even as the Imperial dreadnought passes over heading straight for the Black Spire
    • the heroes decide to head to the Black Spire to stop the Imperial Magi
  • as they near the Spire, the heroes are confronted by Grandmaster Seraphina
    • Seraphina says that Ezekiel’s mentor, Nathan, was a traitor to their order
      • before they joined the Empire, they were known as the Knights Shadow
      • she draws the Sword of Shadow, a blade of shifting void, like a black scar in the fabric of reality
      • Ezekiel draws the Emerald Sword in return
      • Corbin gets a few solid hits in before Seraphina locks him in a forcecage
      • the Grandmaster stuns Azeem with a word of power
      • Seraphina blasts Tarkonus with ice and lightning, before pulling him into a whirlwind
      • then she teleports away
  • they see the Imperial dreadnought retreat
  • Ellestriel arrives and frees Corbin from the forcecage, and asks if they’ve seen her husband
  • she says that Kronus and the others were able to hold back their attack at the Spire
  • the heroes head towards the front line
  • they find Zerefin laying in the middle of a legion of orc corpses, and standing above him, the orc warchief, Gorram Man-Breaker

NPCs

Grandmaster Seraphina of the Imperial Magi

Leader of the Imperial Magi, and apparently the Knights Shadow. She is a master of abjuration and evocation, and she wields the Sword of Shadow, an artifact passed down from the very beginning of their order. Around her neck hangs the Spirit of the Sky, one of the six gems that everyone wants.

Ellestriel, Daughter of the Moon

The former princess of the now extinct moon elven kingdom, she is now Sanctuary’s first lady alongside her husband, Zerefin. An archmage in her own right, she has been instructing new pupils in the ways of the moon elves’ arcane traditions so that their magic might live on, even if their people do not.

Gorram Man-Breaker, Warchief of the Horde of the Bleeding Hand

A force of nature who has gathered first a clan, then a tribe, then an army, and now a horde under his primal might. There hasn’t been a horde this size in almost three decades, not since Terym marched on Ley Seren.

Chapter Thirteen: Siege of Sanctuary (Part 1)

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Summary

  • Caerwyn, Capital of Elemey
    • there’s a somber funeral for King Griffith Rhaewyn
    • Princess Siana is crowned Queen Siana Rhaewyn I
      • her first official act as queen is to present medals of heroism to the party for saving the capital
    • there are two letters among Illarion Voronov’s belongings
      • the first letter is signed “S,” who they suspect is Grand Master Seraphina of the Imperial Magi, berating Voronov for breaking their deal
      • another they suspect is from someone in the Knights Torment, signed “A,” wondering what the hell Voronov is doing
    • the party has no time to waste, and takes the Crimson Hawk east to Watcher’s Rest
  • Watcher’s Rest, Sanctuary
    • as their airship approaches Watcher’s Rest, they see huge storm clouds approaching the city
    • the party meets with Zerefin, Hero of the Demon War and Lord Protector of Sanctuary, in his war room where he briefs them on the situation
      • the orc horde of the Bleeding Hand is lead by Gorram Manbreaker, an orc of extreme strength to gather a horde of this size
      • the green dragon Shadowthorn has been spotted throughout the orcs’ ranks
      • storm giants have created huge storms to conceal the horde’s advance on the city’s walls
      • he doesn’t know what the horde wants with the city, but he suspects their after Magus or want to break the Abyssal Seal under the Black Spire
      • Ezekiel suspects they’re after the gems, because everyone is after the gems
    • Zerefin asks the party if they can handle one of the storm giants
    • the party marches to battle with Sanctuary’s troops, fighting their way through through the orcs and the storm
    • they find one of the storm giants on the other side of the river
      • Tarkonus unleashes a storm of fire across the bridge that mows down a squad of orogs, the orc elite
    • after they defeat the storm giant, the storm lets up in their area
    • as the sky clears, they see blue dragons and an Imperial dreadnought in the distance
    • as they turn return to the city, something explodes out of the river behind them, and they hear a booming roar
    • Shadowthorn is upon them

Chapter Twelve: City of Darkness

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Summary

  • Caerwyn, Capital of Elemey
    • as the Crimson Hawk nears the city of Caerwyn, a globe of darkness sits ominously where the city should be
    • they land the ship outside the globe, leaving Princess Siana with Dash and Edana while they investigate
    • they enter the globe of darkness and find that everyone inside is in a deep slumber
    • the heroes make their way to the palace
    • Royal Palace, Caerwyn
      • the gates are all open, the guards are asleep at their posts, but uninjured
      • they enter the throne room and find King Griffith Rhaewyn laying dead beneath his throne and a man, the Warstranian enchanter Illarion Voronov (the guy who cursed the Princess in the first place), standing above his cold lifeless body
        • before Voronov even speaks, the heroes charge forward
        • it becomes apparent that Voronov is a vampire
        • Tarkonus manages to turn the undead enchanter, and Voronov retreats further into the palace
        • wolves burst through the stained glass windows and vampire spawn rush to meet them
        • they see Voronov flee into the Royal Crypts
    • Royal Crypts, Caerwyn
      • the heroes explore the crypts, finding a few Elemey guards still alive that they send back, and battling some wraiths and banshees
      • in one of the rooms, guarded by some deadly traps, they find a spell book and an exquisite flute
      • in one of the crypts, they find a coven of night hags
        • the hags turn Corbin in a frog
        • they were maintaining the ritual spell that kept the city in perpetual darkness
      • at the other end of the crypt, they find a flooded chamber
        • they find the Cloak of Ascension in a king’s tomb
      • they don’t find any sign of Voronov inside
    • Royal Palace, Caerwyn
      • as they make their way back into the throne room, they see the bodies of the guards that they’d met in the crypts
      • Voronov attacks from the shadows
        • the vampire dominates Ezekiel for a bit, forcing him to turn his radiant blade on Corbin, before Tarkonus dispels the enchantment
        • Voronov moves like the wind, dashing around the room
          • Corbin grabs him to keep him in place, but the vampire turns into mist in his hands
        • Azeem uses the Cube of Force to trap himself, the vampire, Corbin, and Ezekiel in an inescapable arena
        • Ezekiel fills the cube with a wall of fire, but gets charmed by the vampire, and Voronov tricks him into dispelling it
        • Corbin gets cursed repeatedly, preventing him from cutting Voronov to pieces
        • Azeem is laid low by Voronov’s blade and magicks, almost dies twice
        • eventually Corbin cleaves Voronov into mist, and Ezekiel uses the Emerald Sword to obliterate the vampire for good
        • a ring falls from the remains
    • Princess Siana mourns the loss of her father, and frets over the fate of her kingdom
      • allows the heroes to keep anything they’ve found in the Royal Crypts as a reward for saving her and defeating Voronov
    • Elemey scouts report that the orc horde is far larger than they had imagined
      • orcs bearing the banner of the Bleeding Hand have emerged from the forests to the east, but instead of heading here, have turned east towards Sanctuary

Items

The Cloak of Ascension

A snow white cloak with shining gold trim, blessed by Aurasanna. When activated, the cloak transforms into a pair of glowing, angelic wings that shine like beacon of hope.

The Ring of Freedom

There are no strings on me.

Chapter Eleven: Forgotten Temple

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Summary

  • Reunited with Dash and Eldana, the party takes Princess Siana of Caerwyn east aboard the Crimson Hawk
  • they travel north, around the border of the Elven forest of Ley Serne
  • as they near Grayfell, Tarkonus mentions an abandoned Ethereal Knights temple that’s on their way, which may contain some forgotten treasure
  • Plains of Grayfell, near the ruins of Vanyard
    • Encounter – Orc Raiding Party
      • Azeem saw a group of orcs, ogres, and a hill giant in the distance
      • as they approached, he mowed them down with a rain of arrows
      • they belonged to the Bleeding Hand tribe, as signified by the red hand symbols in their tattoos, markings, and banners
  • Ruins of Vanyard, Grayfell
    • the party enters the ruined city, leveled during the Demon War
    • Encounter – Orcs and Trolls
    • Ethereal Temple
      • the temple is mostly intact
      • Encounter – Orc Elite
        • inside, the party faces a group of orog-hai with a giant, supported by some orc shamans
        • during the battle, an orc chieftan swoops in atop of wyvern
      • after the battle, Ezekiel finds a stairway behind the altar
        • he follows it down into a small chamber with two stone statues flanking an ornate set of doors, with orc corpses strewn before them
        • Ezekiel approaches and the statues come to life and attack him, he turns around and finds that the exit is blocked by a sphere of annihilation, and is beat to near death
      • as Ezekiel falls, the sphere disappears and the party is able to enter the room
        • they heal Ezekiel and defeat the stone guardians
      • past the door, they find a chamber with the same circles of runes that they saw in the previous temple
        • Tarkonus plays his flute, activating the runes, and transporting them into an ethereal vault with a chest full of treasure

Items

The Emerald Sword

Spellguard Shield

Candle of Invocation

Cube of Force

Adamantine Breastplate

Chapter Ten: Imperial Escape Redux

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Summary

  • Imperial Palace, Harthanmoor
    • Tell Princess Siana of Elemey they’re here to rescue her
      • Siana tells them the Imperials cured her illness, but are now keeping her hostage as leverage over her father, King Griffith
    • As they open the door of the throne room, the full might of the Imperial forces is arrayed outside
      • Grandmaster Seraphina, four Magi, a company of guardsmen, two blue dragons, and two gunships
      • the party is encased in a wall of force
      • Corbin promptly shuts the door
      • the Magi teleport into the throne room
        • Seraphina tells the group to surrender
        • she recognizes Ezekiel as the Dragonslayer and Nathan’s ward, and says that was strange since Nathan had vowed never to train anyone again
        • she says she’s known Nathan a long time
    • suddenly, the world becomes hazy and all color fades from it, one wall collapses behind them as the arm of a Nightmare reaches in and snatches one of the Magi
      • Seraphina teleports away, and the wall of force drops
    • the party runs outsides as the Magi attack the Nightmare
    • the entire company of guardsmen are standing in a stupor, in the next courtyard a dragon circles a giant Nightmare that towers over the wall
    • an Imperial gunship crashes through a nearby wall, and lands in the courtyard
      • Corbin rips open the door, the entire crew is in the same dazed stupor
      • they through out the crew, tie up the Navigator, and Ezekiel pilots the gunship, flying them north, over the mountains
    • an Imperial gunship gives chase
      • Azeem and Korrac man the two cannons, while Corbin and Tarkonus reload them
      • Azeem fires a shot that nearly tears the Imperial ship in half
      • after slugging it out, the Imperial gunship eventually falls out of the sky and crashes, but their ship isn’t looking much better
  • Mountain Range North of Harthanmoor, the Empire
    • they take a short rest while they come up with a plan
    • they decide to head to Kendreoth to warn them of the Imperial attack, and then bring the Princess home to Elemey
    • they force the Imperial Navigator to fly the ship overnight to save travel time
    • shortly after they take off, while Azeem is watching the Navigator, the Navigator turns invisible
    • Azeem wakes the rest of the party, and they search and find one of the exterior doors is open
    • they park the ship in the forest for the night
  • Overland, The Empire
    • after days of uneventful travel, they hear the roar of a dragon as it lands on their ship
    • they go up top and find a Magus riding a blue dragon
    • Corbin tears into the dragon, and before it flies off Korrac finishes it with a well shot from the cannon, and the Magus detaches herself and falls through the sky
    • Ezekiel does some fancy flying and catches the falling Magus, as she hits the top of the ship, Corbin removes her head, and Azeem puts an arrow through it as it sails through the sky
  • Tortaron, Kendreoth
    • Ezekiel lands the ship outside of the city and they destroy it
    • they arrive in the three-walled city safely

Chapter Nine: Another Castle

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Summary

  • As they approach Harthanmoor, a giant blue, beam of lights shoots into the sky from the city’s direction
  • Harthanmoor, The Empire
    • the city is in high spirits as they prepare for St. Aldren’s Day
    • they hear news of a big annoucement later in Aldren Square
    • Aldren Square
      • the Imperial Magi and Knights are lined up, with Grand Master Seraphina at the head of the assembly
        • she announces that the Empire has an ancient artifact that controls blue dragons, the nation of Elemey has allied with them, and they’re going to war with Kendreoth
        • two dragons land with magi riding them for emphasis
        • Eldaine, an Imperial Magi that Ezekiel had met when he helped Cynder the gnome warlock escape at the start of the campaign, sees Ezekiel and sends him a message telling him to meet her at the Silver Sparrow
    • Silver Sparrow Brothel
      • the party meets Eldaine in a backroom
        • she explains that the Princess has been cured of her illness, but is being held hostage to blackmail Elemey into helping the Empire in the East
        • she also says no one knew that the stones they’ve been looking for could control dragons
        • she notices that Tarkonus is an ethereal knight, and says that they might have had a way to get into the palace, as they were close to oligarchy before the Empire took power
      • Tarkonus remembers the location of an Ethereal Temple in the mountains north of the city
  • Ethereal Knights’ Temple, Mountains North of Harthanmoor
    • after a day of travel, they find a hidden entrance in the mountain range
    • the temple is abandoned, but has demons, traps, and treasure
    • at the end, they find a rune circle, which is actually the notes of a song
      • Tarkonus plays his pan flute and it transports them into the ethereal plane, where a passage leads back towards the city
  • The Imperial Palace, Harthanmoor
    • the ethereal passage leads them into Imperial Palace
    • they sneak through part of the palace, then fight through Imperial Knights and Magi in the courtyards, to the main keep and in the throne room
    • Ezekiel notices that the Imperial Magi have a familiar fighting and casting style
    • find Princess Siana in a lavish bedroom

Items

Bracers of Archery

Wand of Fireballs

The Belt of Crimson Might

 

Chapter Eight: At A Loss

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Summary

  • Kiryat Masana, Auranoch
    • The party regroups at the Aurani stronghold with Lethias and Selendriel
    • Silvaras and Valandriel arrive and break the bad news to Corbin, their father, King Myer of the Desert, is dead, killed by Mawganar
    • rumors have spread about how Ezekiel killed one of the red dragons, earning him the title “the Dragonslayer”
    • Ezekiel finds an ancient fairytale about a boy who finds six stones and summons a powerful spirit, who asks if he wants to save the world, or destroy it
    • the halfling smuggler, Korric, has heard there’s a miracle gemstone keeping the Princess of Caerwyn alive
    • Lethias gives Azeem a Quiver of Souladil and twenty magical arrows
    • the party decides to travel to Watcher’s Rest and speak with Kronus
  • Highpass, Delrune
    • the town seems fearful in the light of the attack on Auranoch
    • short stop for supplies, and the party keeps moving
  • Along the Highroad, Sanctuary
    • to the south, at Vanyard, now a ruin since the Demon War, there was a chapter of Tarkonus’s extinct order, one the six ancient knightly orders
    • Encounter – Elemental Ambush
      • the party is ambushed by air and earth elementals
      • Tarknous exploded an earth elemental for 104 damage with a crit, lvl 5 inflict wounds
    • a mile off the Highroad, they find half the wreckage of a airship, possibly destroyed by a dragon, picked clean by orcs
    • find the remains of a caravan, attacked by orcs
  • Watcher’s Rest, Sanctuary
    • meet with Jacques, the door guard, and Kronus the Black
    • Kronus has had no luck extracting the stones
      • they have homogenized with each other and the host, Magus
      • unable to manipulate them as they are, would probably have more luck with a sample
      • Corbin asks if they could somehow use the demon lord inside him to fight the dragon, which Kronus tells him is pure crazy talk, the demon lord would kill them all
    • the halfling smuggler finds an airship that’ll take the party to Caerwyn
    • hear that orcs and gnolls are warring to the southwest
  • Overland, between Sanctuary and Elemey
    • they pass over the forest where orcs and gnolls are warring
    • Azeem detects a dragon presence in the forest as they fly over
  • Caerwyn, Elemey
    • Azeem detects a dragon presence in or around the city
    • dragons have been sighted around the country
    • the castle guard tells them that the Imperials were here a couple days ago and have taken Princess Siana to Harthanmoor, the Imperial Capital
    • they get an audience with King Griffith of House Rhaewyn, Rightful Ruler of Elemey, and Faithful Servant of Aurasanna
      • he says the Imperial Magi came and said they could cure his daughter if they could bring her to the Imperial Academy
        • desperate to cure her, with no other options at that point, he agreed
      • Princess Siana was cursed by a Stranian sorcerer, Illarion Voronov, the former heir of the now defunct Warstran, a month prior
        • Illarion sought the Princess’s hand in marriage as his first step in restoring Warstran
        • the memories of the King and the guards gets fuzzy after that, they don’t remember what he did exactly or how he left
        • she grew severely ill, and it seemed her death was certain
        • one of her mother’s gemstone necklaces, a blue sapphire, miraculously seemed to stave off the sickness and stabilize her
      • the party decides to travel to Harthanmoor, resecures the services of the same airship, pay him enough to brave the dangerous skies