Fixing a broken world

A Veil Torn

As Mordenai touches Tog and casts his spell you all feel an explosion go off in your head and memories come flooding back. You remember the four of you meeting in Antiva along with a fifth, a human wizard named Aureon. You slew the mighty dragon Sartharion, helped defend a group of innocent Kobolds from an invasion force intent on their destruction. Monarch’s once knew your name, looked to you as heroes. And heroes you were, the stuff of legend yet flesh and blood. And then it all went to hell.

Literally. Tersius warned his servants that the Dragon with 7 heads and 10 horns was beginning to weaken his prison. The Dragon’s name was Lucifer, a being bent on making creation bow to him. The five of you were assembled for the most deadly mission you had faced. One of you allowed a servant of Tersius, his greatest warrior Michael, to possess you. You were to take him into the Cage where he would hold Lucifer at bay while you repaired the cage with magic far beyond what any mortal could accomplish. Epic magic. Your power then was unlike any other, no one alive could defeat you. Or so you thought.

You began your descent into hell, fighting your way closer and closer to the Cage. The details are blurry, bad memories best left in the past. But at last you stood before the cage. You prepared to complete your mission, to fix it before he escaped fully. And at the last moment you were betrayed. Aureon turned his arcane might against you as the cage was opened, revealing he was possessed by a demon. He lashed out at Michael, distracting him enough for Lucifer to gain the upper hand. And then Michael was sealed within the cage. Lucifer removed all of you from hell before you could free him and then cursed you, draining most of your strength away. Gaelic succeeded in stabbing Lucifer once. Not a fatal wound at all, but Lucifer’s pride lead to wrath and he burned hundreds of miles in all directions. Then as he prepared to kill you in your vulnerable state, Joshua appeared and used old magic to shield you from Lucifer. So long as you could not remember Lucifer, he would be unable to find you.

As the burning begins to fade from all of you, you get the fleeting sensation of a chuckle and a whisper “I’ve found you.”

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The Countdown

With only six days left before the scheduled meeting between the Lycanthropes and Mayor Wimbleby, the party begins to plan in earnest. A fact made all the more difficult by the mayor’s suicide the night before.

Tyr, Draevin and Tog stayed at the temple to try and work things out, while Erskin went in to town to speak with the villagers about other possible occurrences that may be linked to the werebears. While being social with the villagers, the blacksmith divulged to Erskin that a caravan was late in coming to Magosi, by almost a week. There were no critical supplies that the village as a whole needed, but there was iron and other materials the blacksmith needed to do his work. Theo asked if the blacksmith knew of any trackers or woodsman and the blacksmith gave him directions to the Rhys, the best tracker in Magosi. Erskin traveled to the temple to gather his companions and set out to the Woodsman’s hut.

Meanwhile, Tyr Draevin and Tog were at the temple discussing their options and concerns about the beast overtaking Father Paitr. In the midst of their discussion, Draevin smelled an awful scent of blood death and decay. When he turned he saw a man in a dark grey robe with a bastard sword on his side and a small sack tied to his belt. After some conversation, the man revealed his name to be Morgan, a paladin of Tersius, who’s mission was to seek out recover and destroy evil artifacts like the one in his possession now. Unsure about the effect this would have, Tyr asked that Morgan wait for Father Paitr.

While waiting for Father Paitr, Tog asked why the item needed to be destroyed. Wouldn’t it be more prudent for it to be put to serving good? Morgan and Draevin were both adamant about not using the vile thing and once the High Father arrived, Morgan strode to the alter and sundered the thing. Theo arrived shortly after, and seeing that he was underequiped to handle werebears, Morgan loaned him his Silvered Sun Sword while he recuperated from his journey.

Erskin presented options to fooling the Lycanthropes, such as disguising one of themselves as the mayor or using Rhys to try and locate them. Draevin went to speak to the mayor’s wife to see if he might borrow some clothes and his cologne to make the disguise more believable. The wife was happy to help Draevin bring the beasts that killed her husband to justice, but couldn’t seem to find his cologne anywhere in the house. Tyr managed to locate the cologne in the Air Shrine, where he had left it earlier as a gift. The air spirit was beginning to lose followers because of the werebears and was very eager to see them stopped. Soon after that the four set out to Rhys’s hut.

The journey wasn’t long and when they got there they met Rhys. He was very wary and standoffish at first, denying (badly) any knowledge of lycanthropes in the area. After speaking with his animal companion, he seemed to have a change of heart and agreed to help them track down the missing supplies.

They traveled the rest of the day and well into the night when Rhys caught the scent of a fire. It was easy to track and soon they found themselves in the woods seeing a large bonfire with a man just staring at the flames. The four sneaked closer, before finally revealing themselves. Draevin was snubbed by the stranger who wished no company and refused to name himself. Tog asked if he could meditate with the stranger and he grudgingly agreed. As he passed around a pond behind the stranger, he had a startling discovery. This man had no reflection. After a careless word, the stranger attacked, pinning Tog and biting into his neck.

The party quickly leaped into action to free Tog and quickly subdued their inferior foe. They followed it back to it’s coffin, blasting several long tunnels to be able to follow it’s descent. They uncovered an ancient burial chamber with symbols of Takhisis on the walls. Draevin directed Theo to destroy the sarcophagous while he beheaded the vampire and sprinkled holy water on it’s ashes. To Draevin’s surprise the vampire began to regenerate. When Draevin attempted to turn it, it began to regenerate faster. Finally it sat before them, naked and looking thoroughly confused.

The Vampire, Klaus, claimed repeatedly that he was not evil and that he had not awakened since he had been laid to rest here. He claimed that Takhisis was not an evil god, but a good one, much like Tersius or Eidon. After some discussion, Klaus told them how he was sustained by positive energy and was a good person in life, preserved so that he might one day bring prosperity back to Orlais and Takhisis. They realized that the amulet that Klaus was wearing was cursed and destroyed it, then going their separate ways from him.

The next day they came across the caravan. The guards and merchants were all dead, the food spoiled. Even the water had somehow been corrupted. There were several shoddy weapons of orc make left at the campsite, tracks leading southwest and a mass grave hastily covered with leaves. Draevin worked to give those in the mass grave a proper burial, while Tog gathered some of the water to have examined later. After that, the group followed the tracks coming to a clearing where the orcs appeared to have camped. There were no tracks leading away from it, just from the caravan to here.

They quickly gathered the salvageable supplies and fixed one of the wagons, and then began the trip back to Magosi. After they returned, they separated for their errands. Erskin began unloading the caravan, Draevin went to the temple and Tog and Tyr went to Ackbar’s Alchemy and Magic Supplies to see if Ackbar could determine what had caused the water to spoil. Quickly learning it was beyond his means, he suggested they go to the mage’s tower. Tog went while Tyr returned to the temple.

At the tower, Tog waited for an hour or two before a man named Koschei arrived and let him enter. He agreed to examine the water for Tog but it would take some time. Tog agreed to come back the next day. As he traveled back into town he and Draevin had a standoff about Tog’s sleeping arrangements, until finally Tog went to the temple for the night. Draevin asked Father Paitr to have someone speak with Tog as he had lost his way. Father Paitr said their newest acolyte should be up to the task and introduced him. Draevin was shocked to see that Joshua was the new Acolyte, but was quickly shushed by a smiling Joshua before he could reveal they had met.

Joshua went to speak with Tog about the path that they were on, and the one they had already traveled. He seemed genuinely sorry to be unable to reveal their past or why he had brought them here. After a back and forth discussion with Tog, he left Tog to his rest, saying that he would mature soon and understand the path better. He then went to Draevin’s room.

He acknowledged Draevin’s doubts about his companions. Two who regularly flaunt the law are odd traveling companions for one who studies Celestial Mysteries after all. Joshua attempted to show that their actions were on their own consciences and then revealed bits and pieces of their shared past, showing them taking hits over and over for their teammate. Draevin remained pessimistic of his patience with his companions, to which Joshua just smiled and stated his faith in Draevin.

The next morning, Joshua fled the temple, pursued by Draevin and Tyr. Joshua seemed genuinely frightened that a man was coming to the village who would be able to recognize him. The repercussions would be terrible for everyone, so Joshua fled, warning them to keep their distance from the stranger.

The two quickly located Erskin in the inn, watching the newcomer arrive in town. He seemed to dote on the children, earning their affection and the nickname grandfather, though he was at most 25. Before they could find Tog, he introduced himself to the stranger who seemed to recognize him. He asked several questions as would an old friend, referring to the three in the inn as well as Aureon. After Tog told the story of what had happened to this man who he could not remember, he pulled out a crystal and began to cast a break enchantment to clear the fog that had settled into their minds.

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An investigation

After Tog was taken away to prison along with Mayor Wimbleby, Draevin went to speak with Father Paitr. Draevin explained that he believed Tog wasn’t in his right mind when he attacked the mayor and asked the Father to speak to the City Council on Gaelic’s behalf. Father Paitr agreed, believing that all the help would be needed to combat the Lycanthrope threat. Tyr went to ground in Ackbar’s Alchemy and Magic Supplies, knowing that the alchemist and kobold had barricaded the doors.

Eventually, Tyr goes to the temple and explains himself to Draevin and the Father. As the sun rises, they travel to the jail so that Tyr can hand himself in and the Father can speak on Gaelic’s behalf. As they approach the jail, however, they see the mayor being carried out. His wrists were shredded and he had blood smeared across his face. Tyr quickly vanished, and invisibly searched the jail inside and out for animal tracks. While he failed to find any tracks, he did find clumps of animal hair inside the cell (along with copious amounts of blood.

After he returned, Father Paitr offers to cast a spell to speak with the imprint of the Mayor’s soul still left in the body. After Tyr gives the hair to Father Paitr as a scrying focus, they return to the temple to cast the spells.

After casting his spell, Father Paitr deferred to the group about the questions to be asked. The first question (who killed you?) was answered with a simple word: “me”. When asked why he killed himself, he responded that he “felt the beast inside me growing”. Focusing next on the Lycanthropes terrorizing the outlying farms, the group asked for their location. “Outside the town, always moving.” Draevin asked how the werebears were contacted and the mayor divulged meeting them “in a grove about an hour east of Magosi on the night of the full moon.” He revealed that he was not changed to a Lycanthrope by the werebears, nor did he know why they were acting strangely. His own beast started growing last night.

After the questioning, the Father went to the jail to plead Tyr and Tog’s case. Tyr hands himself in and asks for mercy. After a bit of haggling and a promise of discount services at the temple, Tog is released into Draevin’s custody under the condition that a guard accompany him while he remains in Magosi and that he spend his nights either in the temple or in the jail. Tyr is fined 100 gold for breaking into the mayors home and is to spend a day in the pillory. They are willing to waive the day in the pillory if you aid them against the lycanthropes.

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Half Man, Half Beast

The players came to themselves in the wasteland confronted by a huge demon, 20 feet tall. His flesh was rotting and appeared to be seeing without the use of his eyes. He forced a link upon the paladin, shifting some of the damage away from himself. They made short work of the demon who exploded, killing the party.

Who then woke up in a very cramped hut. The smell of cat waste was very heavy, making the lupin sneeze several times. The owner of the hut soon revealed herself as Agatha, and commented that she was getting ready to call the grave digger. When asked how they arrived, Agatha merely claimed that “Mr Tumbles brought you.” while gesturing to a very small kitten. Quickly taking their leave of Agatha and her plethora of cats, the party headed to the nearby village of Magosi, unsure of who they were, where they came from or why they traveled together.

As they approached the town, a change in the breeze brought the scent of Lycanthropes to the lupin’s strong nose. Choosing to investigate they found a cave, with several sets of tracks. The lupin studied the tracks and narrowed down their numbers to 6 or 7, 3 of the sets were very small and childlike. The Warlock also noticed a glow in the back of the cave and went to investigate, discovering a mangled ghost. Deciding there was nothing more to be done here the party continued on to town.

The town showed signs of wind damage, several of the buildings having been knocked over. The players split up to gather information to plan their next move. The Binder began asking about Agatha, but learned that she was reclusive and a little insane. The lupin headed to the Temple of Tersius where he was welcomed as “Sacred one” and given a room to refresh himself and rest during his stay in Magosi. The Warlock traveled to the inn, but learned nothing except the price of a room and the Incarnate traveled to the town hall to speak to the mayor. He learned that Mayor Everett Wimbleby was about half an hour out of town investigating the latest farm burning.

After cleaning himself, the lupin spoke to Father Paitr, the high priest. The Father shared news of murders happening in town. The bodies were found in the middle of town, mauled as though by a large animal. Remembering the cave from earlier, the Lupin decided that the murders were the work of Werebears and went to investigate the body of the first victim, the only one that wasn’t cremated, the mayor’s daughter. Meeting with his companions outside the lupin finally smelled the curse of Lycanthropy on Father Paitr, and the warlock used his psionic might to pierce the disguise. It was revealed that Father Paitr is in fact a wereraven, and he swears that he is not evil. While not trusting him completely, the party has decided to let it be for now.

Arriving into town as the mayor returned from his inspection of the farm, the Lupin’s nose was assaulted by a very powerful cologne from the mayor. He seemed aloof and cold to the party, mistrustful of outsiders. He showed them the door the bodies were left near, that led to an underground shrine, and then left to speak with the city council. After descending to see the Air Spirit, the party decided he knew nothing and left to investigate the farm.

The farm house was destroyed, a few timbers still standing but ash everywhere. The crops had also been methodically burned, it was deduced that Flaming Sphere was used. An old man was picking weeds and when questioned told them to make themselves useful and help him. The warlock quickly knelt down to assist. As he worked, he spoke to the two of the recent troubles in Magosi. He claimed to know who they were, and that he was the one who broght them here. He also said that for their own safety, he could not reveal anything to them. After some insistence from the lupin, a loud noise sounded, and the old man revealed his name to be Joshua. He said he had obtained permission to give them their names and as soon as he revealed it, part of the fog shrank back in their minds. The lupin, Draevin, has heard of a servant of Tersius named Joshua who appears to the repentant to show them the way back to the path of righteousness, but is unsure if the two Joshua’s are in fact the same.

Joshua apologized for not being able to help more, as he has been watching the Lycanthropes attack, and the raids are unrelated as far as he knows. He also reveals that the Wimbleby is in fact a werewolf. He is allowing some farms to be attacked so that a majority of the town will stay safe. Joshua asks Draevin and the warlock, Tyr, to be merciful to the mayor as he is not evil, just lost. Draevin says he will try but that if it comes to it, the mayor will be put to death. As they leave, the Incarnate, Theo, sees Joshua fade away.

On the return to town, the Binder Gaelic, wandered off to summon a pair of Vestiges to bind in case they confronted the mayor. He was able to bind Halphax but Marchosias exerted some influence over him. Tyr traveled to Ackbar’s Alchemy and Enchanted Items to see if they had any weapons that were silvered, but the owner, a gnome named Ackbar, said that the mayor had banned the creation of alchemically silvered weapons. Any such weapons in town were melted down, and the materials to create more confiscated as contraband. After letting slip that there were lycanthropes about, Ackbar and his partner, a Kobold named Meepo, began to panic and close the shop, barricading the doors and windows.

The others made a beeline for the temple to speak with Father Paitr. He seemed shocked to learn that Mayor Wimbleby was a Lycanthrope. Draevin asked Tyr to go keep an eye on the mayor in case he contacts the werebears. After falling asleep in his study and waking several hours later, Mayor Wimbleby smelled Tyr and demanded he reveal himself. Tyr did so and told him that they knew of his affliction and his involvement with the murders before fleeing to the Ackbar’s Alchemy.

Having declined a room at the temple and instead taking a room at the Inn, Theo saw the mayor calling the guard to arrest Tyr for breaking into his home. Theo stopped them and asked Mayor Wimbleby to submit to questioning by Father Paitr as to the truth of his accusations. After a brief arguement he agreed and the two made their way to the Temple. After entering the temple, Draevin’s disguise faltered, alarming the guards. Father Paitr calmed them and cast a Zone of Truth to question the mayor. The Mayor affirmed under the spell effect that he had seen Tyr in his home. Draevin, taking advantage of the fact that the Mayor could not lie, asked if he had any involvement with the lycanthrope attacks. After Father Pait reprimanded him for taking advantage of the Mayor’s willingness to verify that he saw Tyr, Father Paitr allowed Draevin to interrogate the mayor.

After affirming that he had contact with the Lycanthropes to protect his people, Gaelic, under Marchosias influence attempted to kill the mayor. This prompted an angry response from Father Paitr who dominated Gaelic into lowering his weapon. Gaelic was questioned briefly before being led to the jail along with the now deposed mayor. The Mayor mentioned his meetings occur on the full moon, a night six days from now.

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