Monday, November 1, 2010

Seattle Campaign 5.0: The Tower of Tomasur Abrill

10/10/10: Return to Loxian, The Tower of Tomasur Abrill

--the adventurers are returned to Loxian by Ixix Jule (via the magical hoop); Wren leaves without telling Captain Jill where she is going
--the adventurers return to the Adventurine Inn and are welcomed by Ranparlin
--they rest, train, relax (XP is awarded)
--eventually, they are called to an audience with Lord Mayor Loxias; they discuss what situations remain at hand: 1) the wraith (the remnants of the power of Thanuran) must be destroyed; 2) the party of Mhitay/Abraxul Rul (including Rissa Ittar and Joven Iirago) remains at large; 3) though Mallux has agreed to not interfere in the Realm, he is still a cause for concern; and 4) from their visit to the Pillars of Luck, Wren used her moment of fortune to discover the location of something that would help the party find resources or items of power to help their cause
--Wren's knowledge is of a legendary tower that once belonged to a sage of Rune named Tomasur Abrill; Abrill lived during the Age of Devotion and was said to have lived for many hundreds of years; during that time, he penned three magical books: The Book of (Lost) Treasures, the Book of (Lost) Sanctuaries, and the Book of (Lost) Knowledge; each book would allow a reader to locate one thing; each book can be used only once in a lifetime
--meanwhile, the party begins to have strange, distressing dreams; the dreams often contain the presence of Mallux, who seems to simply be observing; at first, the party thinks Mallux is simply a part of their usual dreams but in some lucid dreams, Mallux communicates with the group saying he is simply "observing"
--the party decides to look for the Tower of Tomasur Abrill, which is located somewhere in the mountains between Dain and Gaurien on the first continent, in the Five Fists Pass; the tower is protected by magics that only allow "true seekers of knowledge" to find it
--Lord Mayor Loxias teleports the group to the capital city of Dain; the party travels southeast along the river to Toreth and then eventually to the pass
--outside of Toreth, the group discovers that they are being followed by three women; the women are dressed like mercenaries and wear cloaks lined in scarlet
--they decide to use an opportunity to try to spy on the three women; Galen overhears them talking about the party; the women seem to only be watching from a distance for the time being
--the women's names are Wand (who is in charge), Tilinth (who seems impatient that they are keeping a distance), and Zavery (the youngest)
--when they make it to Toreth, they discover that the three women may be assassins; Galen follows Zavery to a safe house; he manages to break into the house to try to find anything to identify their purpose or who they are; Zavery seems to be an apprentice or still in training (she is treated like a servant or a younger sister); Galen only discovers they carry a medal stamped with a stylized 'S'

10/24/10: Toreth, The Burning of the River Wheel

--in Toreth, the party stays at the Inn of the River Wheel, the innkeep is a portly woman named Dorrut
--while Galen is off "spying," one of the three women (Tilinth) comes into the River Wheel disguised as a merchant woman; the party does not engage the woman and both sides simply watch each other; eventually Tilinth leaves and Galen returns
--Dorrut recognizes Galen, who has been through Toreth some years prior; she hints at some "unnamed dealings" that Galen might have been involved in (though she claims to mind her own business)
--the party decides to trick the youngest girl Zavery into coming to the Inn (using one of their message medals and Riseif's mimicry); Zavery comes and is ambushed by the party; she almost escapes but Lanthorn manages to hold person her; they take her into the inn (to the chagrin of Dorrut) to question her
--Zavery reveals very little save for the fact that the three of them were hired to follow and watch the party; Zavery hints that they are hired killers or assassins of some sort; since she has been captured, she will become a liability (her friends will not save her) unless she can escape on her own; the party offers her sanctuary but she decides it best to return to Wand and Tilinth
--the party decides to leave the next morning for the pass, wary that the three women may try to ambush them
--a disturbing dream wakes some of them with a warning from Mallux that "they are coming"
--before they can leave the inn, there is a magical disturbance in the common room; Tirdim suspects some sort of dimensional magic; the fire in the fireplace reveals the face of Mhitay, who says, "You have been difficult to locate"
--the fire increases in size and two demons spring from the massive flames; a combat ensues; the party defeats the demons quickly but not before one of them manages to throw an explosive fire that mortally wounds Telisa and nearly burns down the common room
--the party must remain for at least twenty four hours for Telisa to recover; they set to help Dorrut repair her inn (and pay her handsomely); Galen goes out to find out what he can about the silver 'S' mark (and discovers it could belong to various groups called the "Sisterhood" or the "Scarlet Cloaks" or the "Scimitars")

10/31/10: The Five Fists Pass

--once ready, they leave Toreth; some of the party discover clothes are missing from their packs
--the party heads into the pass, stopping along the way at the small villages that have sprung up along the road
--the pass is well maintained, the road is generally clear and wide; though the land is part of either Dain or Gaurien, there is an informal truce that says it belongs to the darkling clans of the area, namely the Five Fists Clans
--several days out of Toreth and nearly halfway through the pass, the adventurers come upon a small group of darklings, who seem to be waiting for them
--the darklings, including a wisewoman named Ithra, and a hunting party, say they have been looking for travelers; Ithra uses a curious detection spell
--Ithra explains that a group of darklings from a nearby village has been killed by humans; those that killed the darklings left bloodstained clothing behind (the missing clothes); the party explains that they are being framed by three women (followers of the Mistress of Pain and Betrayal); Ithra believes them to a point but they must return to the village to speak with the village elders
--the party agrees and decides to help set things right and to fully clear their name
--the adventurers meet with the elders and decide to scout out the area where the darklings were killed
--eventually, the group is attacked by the three women and several of the darklings (who have been charmed); the battle is bloody and the women seem capable with poisoned daggers; eventually, though, the party is successful; Tilinth and Wand are incapacitated; Zavery is spared
--they discover that Zavery is a priest to Ittar; Zavery says that it is too late for her and she cannot leave her order; she kills both Wand and Tilinth and escapes

11/14/10: The Tower of Tomasur Abrill

--the adventurers leave the darklings and find their way deeper into the pass; they make their way into the foothills of the mountains and find a plateau that overlooks the center of the pass; the plateau might have been the location of the tower
--they arrive in the nighttime; searching, they find the foundations of an old building, perhaps a tower; digging they uncover a stone door in the stone floor of the building's remains
--they wait till morning to explore further and discover that the sunlight reveals a symbol (a sun made of quills) carved into the stone door; opening the stone door, they enter a simple chamber, perhaps a cellar or basement; the walls are inscribed with the words "FIND KNOWLEDGE IN DARKNESS THEN KNOWLEDGE IN LIGHT"
--the close the stone door, plunging the room into darkness, then invoke magical light; the light reveals a second stone door in the floor of the room; the first door (to above) disappears
--the second door, leading further down, is trapped; iron rings set into the door (to allow pulling the door up and open) are electrified; the party easily circumnavigates the trap
--the room below is curiously strange and disturbing: the walls are damp, bloodied, set with manacles around a large cistern or well set with a heavy wooden cap
--Tirdim uses psychometry to find out what happened in the room (touching a manacle) and sees a vision of himself caught in the cuffs and drained of life
--the party opens the cap partially and a magical effluvium escapes, tendril-like, that seeks out sources of magic; one touches Tirdim's mana reservoir ring and drains it completely of magical energy
--the party determines that the room requires some sort of sacrifice; Tirdim says that he will offer himself; the party opens the cap and tendrils drain Tirdim completely of ENDurance; then two scaly, serrated tentacles rise from the well and attack the party; they fight the tentacles defeating them with difficulty; Lanthorn's dark horse price is exacted during the fight and he throws his magical greatsword down the well
--the party makes their way down the well (there are rungs set into the side of the well wall); they find themselves in a large circular domed room; it seems the creature retreated through the only exit in the room, a large opening closed with a portcullis

12/12/10: The Tower of Tomasur Abrill (Part II)

--Telisa naps Tirdim to allow him to recover his lost mana
--the party examines the room and gate; there are small drains in the center of the room; the portcullis is heavy and slightly enchanted; a conspicuous lever is in the hallway beyond about five paces past the grate
--Telisa uses her ring of dwarfform and slips through the bars of the portcullis; she makes her way over to the lever, cancels the dwarfform, and raises the lever; the portcullis goes up
--the party discovers that the portcullis is trapped: a pressure plate just past the grate; Riseif foolishly uses the boots of jumping (which he has still borrowed from Galen) to jump past the floor plate; unfortunately, he misjumps, gets his backpack caught on the points of the raised gate, and falls onto the trapped floor; his left leg is caught by the falling portcullis
--Telisa raises the gate, Riseif is healed, and they get past the trap; the hallway curves and rises as they seem to make their way back upwards; the curve of the hallway tightens as they spiral inward; the architecture does not seem to make sense
--the hallway ends at a large circular door made of metal set with a wheel mechanism that opens the door, like a door that would lead to a large tank; the floor of the hallway seems slightly enchanted; Wren uses locate water to sense that there is a large amount of water beyond the door
--the party decides to tie themselves to the crank of the door; then open the door; Riseif opens the door loosing a deluge of water; the party is swept down the hallway, the floor of the hallway seems to freeze coating the floor in ice; the ropes of holding the party snap under the pressure and the party is swept down the spiral toward the portcullis trap; Tirdim manages to surge a barrier to stop their descent
--eventually, the water subsides but the icy floor remains; using climbing tools and various magics, they party makes their way back up to the doorway; they find a large cistern beyond, now empty of water; the cistern goes up three stories; the wall is set with iron rungs that lead up to a very small ledge where a second round door is set (near the ceiling)
--the party discovers they must close the first door in order to open the second; for some, climbing up the rungs is tougher than others (Tirdim is afraid of heights)
--they get through the door which leads to a square room set with three freestanding stone archways; ancient Gaurien inscriptions on the wall read "THERE IS NO GREATER KNOWLEDGE THAN THAT WHICH YOU SEEK"; each of the archways is inscribed with an ancient Gaurien word: the archway to the left reads "PAST", the archway in the center reads "PRESENT", and the archway to the right reads "FUTURE"
--after some debate, the party decides that the archways might reveal something they need to know about their current quest(s); Wren enters the Past archway; Tirdim uses telepathy to try to track her; he senses/sees her in the hold of a ship fighting zombies (which seems to be a memory or a scene from Wren's past); Telisa goes through the Present archway; again, Tirdim tries to read her thoughts and sees her tied to a torturer's table and Rissa Ittar is cutting her; both times the telepathy breaks
--eventually, all choose an archway (it seems it is the only way out of the room): Riseif goes through the Past and relives a battle with a fire mage that gave him his facial scars (except this time it is his late wife that seems to fight him using fire magic); Galen goes through the Present and is caught in some sort of Gaurien tribunal where he is being convicted and punished for treason; Lanthorn goes through the Future as is caught in a massive battle of some war where he is losing a fight; and Tirdim goes through Future and finds himself at the end of his Test for majority where he fails and the master mages are breaking his magic items as punishment for failure
--all of the experiences are terrifying or painful, some of them leaving physical or mental wounds, and all of the experiences also grant the characters some knowledge of themselves and of their place in the world
--the party wakes from their experiences to find themselves on the plateau, face up to the sky, the sun high above them, and a three-story stone tower rising from the hilltop
--the Tower of Tomasur Abrill is old but sturdy; they go to the front door where an plaque reads (in ancient Gaurien): "TAKE ONLY KNOWLEDGE"
--they enter the tower and discover the interior is clean though everything seems a little old, dated, faded; strange apparitions of golden light (vaguely humanoid shaped) seem to flit into view and vanish; they move about the tower as if they are going about day to day business; they surmise they might be servants of Celan, like daemons, helpful presences and most likely guardians of the tower
--they party make their way to the top floor where they find Tomasur Abrill's study; three large tomes of hammered gold sit atop his desk: the Book of Lost Treasures, the Book of Lost Sanctuaries, and the Book of Lost Knowledge
--each member takes turn reading each of the books; each time they seek some knowledge, the daemons require some sort of knowledge or power in trade
--the party realizes that they must leave the tower before the sun sets
--Tirdim finds knowledge of a mighty magical staff of Power, the location of a lost place of power dedicated to Mind magics, and the formula for Lorook's Mnemonic
--Telisa finds knowledge of an healing artifact of Mannan Aia, the location of a "pretty" sanctuary of Mannan Aia, and an obscure knowledge of monsters
--Galen finds knowledge of a long sword of power against demons, an obscure knowledge of secret societies, ___________________________
--Wren finds knowledge of a weapon of Possos to serve the goals of Possos, a lost sanctuary of Possos, and an obscure knowledge of languages
--Lanthorn finds knowledge of a magical item that enhances Perception and combat skill, a lost sanctuary of Turus (particularly for preparations for war), and an obscure knowledge of weaponry
--Riseif finds knowledge of a light blade that can penetrate armor/protections, a place of power to become a priest of Turus, and an obscure knowledge of mercenaries/mercenary guilds
--the party leaves, uses the scroll of teleportation given to them by Loxias, and return home to Loxian

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