Requiem of Oblivion

Year 1 after the defeat of Atropus
year 1

Excerpts from Rayne’s journal

408, Novion 3
It was wonderful to see everyone again after so long. Chauncy and I have a sweet riding lizard farm set up and we go into Four-falls for other supplies we might need. Like salt. You’d be amazed how quick one can go through salts. Whenever we’re in town we’d check out the Delver’s office in case Arshes has left a note there. We get sent by the office from time to time to take care of some of the left over undead wandering outside Four-falls. It’s fun to travel together again during those times. It’s also nice to not constantly be worried if you’ll be dead tomorrow.

Because it takes about a week to get to the imperial city, we’d planned to stay there for two weeks to thoroughly enjoy ourselves. Gilresh was fretting and running around trying to make sure the first Tiamat day went on without a hitch. You wouldn’t believe how many times a straight male dragon could say, “No! Not chartreuse. Green, like leaf green!”

Tiamat day was wonderful! There were kiosks selling all sorts of sweets and rare treats in our empire. There was a bread baking competition on who could bake the most Tiamat inspired bread. Some strange boy with solar hands or something like that won. It was beautiful. The five heads were interwoven in their 5 colors. I was so surprised you could get those colors in bread! I’ve only ever seen brown bread. Unless you count the time Chauncy and I tried to eat some moldy green bread in the dwarven ruins.
Kids ran around wearing crazy dragon masks pretending to fight one another. The dragon parade began about midday and they would through sweets to the crowd if anyone fed a gold piece to a dragon.

We were all a little surprised to see Thorn at the reunion. Thorn seemed a little surprised himself. He’d spent the last year travelling from village to village acting as a Saint come to heal the sick and maimed. Seems he’s been curing corruption left and right left by the undead. I think one of the villages we passed on the way here worshiped him as a god or something.

Chauncy and I slipped away to leave flowers on all our fallen comrades. Chauncy looked very upset while we stood above their graves. He must have been thinking about the lich bitch. We still haven’t found a lead on Caira, she all but disappeared from the face of the planet when Atropus fled.

Random made it to the first Tiamat day! I guess even an incredibly private individual likes to celebrate once in awhile.
Our vampire looked a little sad about something but he wouldn’t say why. Best not to delve into an older beings problems. Especially when you have so many of your own. He did have interesting news though. He said he was writing down the tale of our adventure. I suggested that if it makes him beaucoup bucks we should definitely have share in the royalties.

After all that catching up, we all went on our separate ways again. Chauncy and I returned to our humble riding lizard farm.

Erevan’s Contemplations and Records

A Particularly Dreary Day-The sun was shining
Written In Elven and in Code
Gave my report of the events that occurred while I was traveling with the most misfit, yet most effective, party I had ever seen. My superiors understood my disposition towards open fame and agreed to keep my involvement in saving the world under raps. Come tomorrow, life shall return to what it was before.

On the night of a particularly bright full moon
Written in Elven
Tirhashkan, that little sneak, finally enlightened me as to who my arcane sponsor is. 200+ years together, and only now does she decide to speak to me on this topic, after all those years of avoiding it. Apparently the Raven Queen was more than pleased with my part in the events that occurred over the past few months. That aside, we at least have an understanding that I will in no way change who I am as a result of knowing my patron.

A Windy Morning
Written in Elven
Radu has become quite anxious with my constant meditation. He doesn’t seem to realize that nearly dying and becoming mildly corrupted can have devastating effects on a person. Perhaps because he hasn’t sensed any real change in me. Really, this is merely because I have been putting everything on hold until I’ve had the time to truly contemplate such traumatic events.

A Windy Afternoon
Written in Elven and in Code
Meditation over. Only now does Radu realize the depth of the changes that have taken place. I’ve realized my own mortality. Though we be Eladrin and Dampyr, we are neither immortal nor incapable of dying. I have been reminded of my true purpose for leaving the Hold of Kas all those years ago, and as such, most of my free time has been spent in the local library, much to Radu’s dismay. He doesn’t understand my obsession with her. If they’re not family, or classified as family, then as far as he’s concerned, they don’t matter. It doesn’t help that even I am incapable of explaining it. Nor can I explain the other product of my meditation. Corruption sat well with me. Far better than I thought it ever would.

Tiamat Day-Sunny, too sunny
Written in Common
Radu insisted that he join me on what he called the annual Tiamat trip. It seems that we will be doing this every year…We encountered Arshes first, and as soon as Radu extended an invitation to visit us at any time in the Feywild, leaving me to provide the appropriate directions, I left them to talk about whatever two swordmages talk about when left alone. I saw Rayne and Chauncy in front of a bread competition. Rayne’s childlike fascination prompted me to retrieve Arshes and Radu. Children seemed to be more their forte than mine. On the way back to the competition we happened upon Thorn who proceeded to join us and tell us of his adventures this past year. We were disappointed to find that Rayne and Chauncy had moved on, but after hearing the victor express a desire to have his bread eaten by the High Priest Gilresh, Radu, upon the insistence of Arshes, managed to somehow charm him into letting us bring the bread to Gilresh for him. Only the strength of Arshes’s morals prevented us from eating the entire colorful, five-headed masterpiece before Gilresh had a chance to see it. Though, I must say, Gilresh did seem to enjoy the leaf-green head. Rayne and Chauncy did eventually catch up with everyone, but only after the delicious creation was decimated. As the festivities neared the end, Radu and I slipped away to find ourselves a partner with which we could satisfy ourselves with.

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The Siege of Bonderaal

After a day’s journey through the surreal beauty of the feywild, the party entered Brokenstone Vale. Swarms of lycanthropes ambushed them, but were scattered like the wind by blade and spell. Upon entering their lair, a coven of night hags led by Kayline begged a truce, desiring no more bloodshed. Hearing the pc’s news of Atropus, Kayline reluctantly offered to go to Mithrendain and attempt to entreat a temporary truce with the Maiden of the Moon. With the lycanthropes and Eladrin allied, the party’s mission might be successful.

Surrounded by mortal foes, Kayline braved the wrathful presence of the Maiden, pleading for her to lay aside her hatred in the face of a graver threat. Begrudgingly, the archfey agreed to a temporary alliance. Even still, the hags and lycanthropes were to be at the vanguard of the assault, in the hopes of eliminating them indirectly. Maximum Pain assured Kayline that they would do their best to keep lycanthrope casualties down, and that their bravery will not go unnoticed.

Arrayed in formation around Mithrendain, the armies of the Autumn Court, and Brokenstone Vale waited for the Maiden to open the Lunar Door. Within seconds, the crystal spires of the city faded away, replaced by the white stone walls and squat white buildings of Bonderaal. An unnatural chill swept from the city, now mostly covered in the black ice from Thanatos. The party secured one of the two city gates, while the lycanthropes were sent in to storm the other. Despite major casualties, the lycanthropes took the gate, securing a strong foothold into the ravaged city. In the Maiden’s war tent, Kayline described the column of violet energy over the temple that dissipated during Worldfall as a Demon Gate. If they reopened it, the Abyss would have a way into the feywild. It was decided that the pcs foremost priority was to make their way through Bonderaal, gain entry to the temple of Erathis, and prevent the gate from reopening.

After successfully evading notice by the droves of now-undead citizens, the party arrived at the temple. A powerful Oni barred their way in, but was destroyed. The main chamber of the temple lied ahead, blocked by 2 massive portcullises. Visible beyond the bars, necromancers and cultists stood amidst the toppled statue of Erathis, aiding a vile undead beholder in the ritual to reopen the Gate. Racing against time, they scoured the rest of the temple, locked in battle with foul undead. With the levers to the portcullises opened, Maximum Pain strode into the desecrated hall, bent on stopping the Abyss from being unleashed on Faerie.

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Last time on DnD

Rayne’s update

We managed to convince the Nighthags to fight with us and make a truce with the Maiden of the Moon. The maiden of the moon was almost inconsolable. Clearly she’s the bad one more so than the ones she accuses of being evil. But who are we to talk? Of course the truce included had putting the werewolves at the front along with us.

She opens the gates. Now, the battle starts.

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6/9 Into the Fey Wild

Rayne’s Update
“Welcome to Fey-Ree,” Thorn said as we entered the magic rock. At least that’s what it sounded like he said. Chauncy and I said together, “Fairy?”

Thorn led us to the Eladrin city Mithrendain, ruled by the Maiden of the Moon. We seeked out her help in finding us a door that would drop us in the middle of the purple glowing village, and maybe a few warriors to help clear it out.
She of course had other ideas. It seems opening the Lunar door has more consequences than we were led to believe. Opening it would leave the city vulnerable to attack from their enemies, the Femorians in the Fey Dark. The only way the Queen would help us was if he helped her clear out some pesky Lychanthropes and some Night Hags from Bloodfang Redoubt in Brokenstone Vale. Thorn would be able to lead us there. I hope what they say about how time isn’t moving here is true.
Atropus is coming and he’s not going to wait until we finish all these side quests to get here and enslave us all.
Why can’t all these rulers see that there are greater problems than some ancient feud they have? Call a truce! Gather together to stop Atropus now, and fight each other to the death later. Sometimes I wonder if I’m really the evil one, or they are. At least I’m trying to stop the red star without putting conditions on my helping. And that demon lord is a fool, hindering us every chance he can get just because he has it in for some goddess. He’ll suffer just as much as the mortal realm should we fail.

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6-3: We have the chalice!

Rayne’s update

We battled our way through the tomb. I have found that I do not like mirrors. I was thrown in front of one at the beginning of the battle, and before I could strike again I was sucked in. I could see my friends battle the zombies and cultists by themselves. The cultist would not tell anyone how to free someone from the mirror. Chauncy decided to just kill the cultist and figure out the mirrors later. Arshes studied the mirror while the rest of the party distracted the zombies. If you threw someone in front of the mirror, they would be sucked in and the other person inside would be thrown out. A zombie took my place inside, and I ran at the cultist. I stabbed him until he could see his guts falling out of him. I ripped his face off and added it to my collection.

The next room had a glowing platform in the middle of it, and there stood a lackey of Caira trying to steal the chalice from its pedestal. She summoned creatures to defend her. The ghost creatures could enter our bodies and attack others. Arshes was mind raped by one and attempted to take out Chauncy.
We focused our attacks on the lackey, and when she fell so did her minions. Her face was also added to the facebook for completeness.
Arshes took the chalice from its spot and drank from it. It is full of an incredible healing potion.

We made our way out of the dungeon lake. The lake had completely frozen over with black ice. The fishing village was glowing purple. Typical, we finally save some important thing for our quest, and the nearest village gets taken over by bad guys. Well, worse guys than us.
We decided to cut through the fey wild to get to the city instead of crossing the lake. Maybe we can reason with Orcus’ lackeys. He will suffer too if Atropus wins, maybe we can convince him to back off while we take care of this red star of doom.

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5-26: The King is Dead

Stepping over the crumbling body of the Dark Pharaoh, the party entered a large audience chamber, complete with pews, and a tall balcony where a pair of Orcus necromancers stood. They summoned their fell servants, but were cut down by the heroes’ combined might. Kaetien had to purge Rayne of a foul infestation of undead worms; she was exhausted by the ordeal. Entering a side room at the balcony level, the party encounters a ghostly apparition of King Torolf flogging himself in penitence for his sins. Amongst the pews below, another ghost of Torolf stood raping a little girl. With baleful expression, the penitent king warns the PCs that in order to secure the key to the vault, they must free his soul from the evil that has consumed it.

Leaving the haunted room, the PCs battle a host of demons from Tartarus while crossing a cavern covered in the abyssal layer’s black ice. Turning to the far side of the cavern where Kaetien stood, the party is shocked to see the cleric impaled upon a massive spider-leg encased in rusted metal! The crippled death knight Throzak the Defiler reveals his new form given to him by his master, General Gorguth. The party was unable to reach him in time to stop his requisition of the Amulet of Al Akbar. Before Kaetien expires, he makes the PCs promise to find his sister and free her from undeath. Disheartened, the party trudges forward.

Soon they enter a caved-in room dominated by an ancient and mysterious standing stone. The Varosi worshipped primal spirits, and very few of these Guardian stones remain intact. Leaving an offering of food, the energies around the stone form a gateway to the Feywild, from which a shifter shaman named Thorn, and his bear spirit companion Brother, emerges. Guided by the elders of his tribe, Thorn has stepped through the portal here to complete his rite of passage. It is a lofty task of helping to rid the world of this undead menace; Atropus will unmake all life, so he will do what he can to help before time runs out. The party agrees to have him join them.

Beyond ornate doors of solid bronze lies the burial chamber of King Torolf the Cruel. Rayne snuck undetected across the chamber to the throne where the dead king’s skeleton sat. After scattering him bones across the floor, four wailing spirits fled the body, into each of the four pillars supporting the tomb. Out of the pillars stepped the four aspects of the shattered psyche: The Heartless, The Conquerer, The Rapist, and The Penitent. Each aspect was overcome by the heroes, though their forms were terrible to behold. Though individual spirit was near as powerful as its final manifestation. The King’s disembodied skull blazed with the combined might of its fragmented evil, unleasheing rays of entropy and soul-shrivelling pulses. Long the PCs fought the ancient spirit, and Torolf was vanquished. An apparition of him appeared before the group, seemingly at peace. He thanked the PCs for freeing his soul of the evil within him, and fades away to be judged by the Raven Queen. Before he disappears, he gives the team the vault key.

Entering the massive necropolis, the party fights hordes of Varosi spirits as they spiral downwards to the bottom of the cavernous hall. Crossing the bridge across water now locked in with obsidian ice, the PCs reach the formidable vault door.

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4-1-12 Oh dear! Mummy!

Rayne’s Update

We followed the tunnel up to a 50 foot drop, at the bottom of which was a lake. We debated climbing down a rope to see what was down there, but the cleric noticed there were 4 vrocks sleeping on the ceiling above us. It was decided that maybe going down the other tunnel would be a better option.

The tunnel forked at the end of it. To the right we saw a statue standing over a chest and to the right a pair of doors with two carvings of the king in the book we acquired. We figured it would be a quick trip to pick up what was in the chest then head on over to the double doors. The treasure chest had a simple trap on it, no match for my skills. We easily rescued the treasure within. Of course the chest was guarded. The second I had the item in the bag, the statue came to life. He was no match for our combined might though.

The door proved to be the bigger challenge for our group. It wasn’t a normal lock, so I could not pick it. It needed some sort of magic blast to open, though Gilrush insisted that we need only make faces at it, then it’d open. Since I’m the only one in this party who can’t do even basic magic, I was useless in this venture. After about 20 minutes of screwing around, Chauncy and Gilrush finally unlocked the door.

The room was lined with pillars that looked like the old king. Half of the floor glowed blue, while the other glowed red. Stepping onto the different colors brought about different emotions. On the blue I felt calmer than I thought possible; I could almost part with the facebook and move on with my life.

As I thought these things, the doors in the back burst open. Two giant bone creatures stomped in and hidden behind them was an armored mummy. The colors on the floor suddenly intensified, and in the center of the room they swirled together to form an elemental beast. I almost didn’t want to fight, but I knew if I didn’t strike them down, they would do terrible things to us.
In the midst of the fighting I fell onto the red side. In an instant all of my rage returned; every enemy that had dared to touch me had to die. I threw myself at the elemental, and Gilrush and I managed to take it down easily. At which point it blew up in a ball of fire. Some days, I am glad I was born a Tiefling.

The rage subsided, but the calm did not return. I almost wish the elemental’s power had not faded
with his death.

We were able to take care of the undead enemies. Their claws had been difficult to move past, and the mummy seemed near invincible. I can’t help but feel stronger after such a hard fought battle.

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RESOURCE - King Torolf the Cruel

King Torolf the Cruel, author unknown, written in The Age of Tears 2365 (986 years ago)

Torolf, later known as “The Cruel”, was the last king of the native men which lived in the lands of Saboria prior to Sabor Nerelon’s arrival, known as the Varosi. Not many structures of Varosi origin are left standing, though their vast burial tombs are among the most intact. The ruins in which you are delving is the most preserved of Varosi tombs, and also the most infamous, being the sepulcher of the last Varosi King, burned alive by his own people after Sabor Nerelon offered them a life without tyranny while under her rulership. The Varosi were obsessed with the afterlife, and took great pains to preserve the bodies of the dead, and constructed massive necropolises to inter them. Despite the cruelty of King Torolf, the Varosi still respected his strength, and gave him all the proper burial rites befitting his status.

Oh, sundered King/ what
spikes of pain you have
driven into thy kingdom/
Of ragged breath your
weary people curse thy
name/And thou dost laugh
in the voices of the
many men which crowd thy
soul/What horror to live
with four minds in one
mortal shell, what sear
of the spirit to drive
thine own self to madness/
In the darkness of hearts,
In the crucible of anger,
In the cauldron of battle,
In the quiet halls of wisdom.
In Boros’ name we bury you/
with respect and honor, nay
do our hearts forget the blood
thou hast spilt in the soil/
Yet you were our King, the last
of our people/the fires of your
pyre died, as the fate of Varosi
blazed like a beacon on the shore.
Long we drink to you, ’O mad King/
Last of his kind, may you find
peace in Death/ your many selves
free of this mortal coil.

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CINEMATIC - Drodasool, Gilrush, & Malar

(The scene opens on a muddy hill sparsely covered with weeds. The hill overlooks the moorlands surrounding Ebonvault Temple, and the burning ruin of a small village. Bodies of the villagers are still warm, as Tiamat’s disciples strip the settlement of all valuables. Two dragonborn children, and a grizzled, blue-skinned one sit on this hill to witness the carnage.)

GILRUSH: They are all dead?

DRODASOOL: Correct, child. Tiamat teaches us to exact total retribution. Mercy is a weakness that divides the spirit and causes one to hesitate. To hesitate is to fail both from within and without. Remember this.

MALAR: Won’t the clergy of Bahamut attack us for slaying these humans?

DRODASOOL: Perhaps, though I doubt it. Korhaviin is younger, weaker, and wise enough realize his position. He should not have slain so many of our warriors, or helped so many of the people living in our territory. By Io’s blood, Tiamat must create balance, else the scales topple, and the end-times begin.

GILRUSH: Who is Io, master? Why must Tiamat and Bahamut follow his orders?

MALAR: Yeah, why doesn’t She just try to kill Him?

DRODASOOL: So young.. I always forget how young you two are. You see, when Gaiya formed the First Gods from her breath, it was Io who was firstborn. He was the first Dragon, and created us in His image.

GILRUSH: Io created Tiamat and Bahamut?

DRODASOOL: In a sense.. But not intentionally. You all remember your lessons on the Dawn War? When the gods took up arms against the mythic Primordials, it took 2-3 deities to bring down one of the great chaos-beings. Even then, many were beyond the gods’ ability to slay permanently, thus the Primordials were imprisoned for all eternity within various divinely crafted prisons, far from our world. Io was the mightiest of the gods, and slew several Primordials before facing one such beast named Huer-Ket. It was a being of monolithic proportions, wielding an axe large enough to cleave mountains. Arrogant in his power, great Io fought this creature alone. No records account for the battle itself, but one thing is certain. Huer-Ket‘s axe cleaved Io in twain with a single blow. From the two halves, our queen Tiamat, and her counterpart, Bahamut were born. Weakened by the battle, the Primordial could not survive the terrible onslaught the two reborn gods inflicted upon it. That was the first and last time the two ever worked with unified purpose.

MALAR: But they do work together, in a way..right? They both try to preserve balance. It makes sense, I didn’t realize they are two halves of a whole. One cannot be without the other.

DRODASOOL: Correct, child. Light cannot be without darkness. The brighter the light, the deeper the shadow that is cast; one cannot overtake the other.

GILRUSH: But what if it does happen? You said it’d be the end-times. What does that mean?

DRODASOOL: Well, it is written on the Wall of Dragonkind that if one of the two ever perishes, the survivor, driven mad by the loss of the other, would seek to cover the world in darkness, or light. Another theory among some members of dragonkind is that perhaps the surviving god would absorb the other’s essence, becoming Io reborn. An optimistic theory, but I don’t think it’s that easy.

MALAR: Is there anything left of Io’s body?

DRODASOOL: An astute question, child. The gods were able to preserve a small quantity of his blood. It was entrusted to both Tiamat and Bahamut, and they both have half the amount locked away in their dominions. There’s also blood stained on the colossal axe that killed him. The weapon is somewhere in the Elemental Chaos, guarded by dragons of all colors. These dragons still worship Io as the true God; our queen sees them as deluded fools, yet useful guardians.

GILRUSH: Why do they guard the blood?

DRODASOOL: There is power in blood, child. The gods protect their blood from falling into the hands of those who would use it against them, or their creations. King and Queen are made from the Firstborn’s ichor; and though they should destroy it to eliminate the risk, both consider it sacreligious to do such a thing. Thus, the blood of Io remains the only known preserved ichor in existence… aside from the Crawling King’s, though his is unique in that it only has power in the Underdark, much like the tortured god himself.

MALAR: The fires have gone out.. Can we go home now?

DRODASOOL: Yes, let us return. Remember this lesson, today.

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3-25-11, Alright we got a throne! Oh wait...weren't we after a cup?

Rayne’s update
We ran into a demon painter and a vampiress on a throne. The painting of the demon felt ominous, but we decided to hang onto it. We also found a throne and a chalice in the room. Sadly it wasn’t the chalice we were looking for.

Black ice covered much of the surfaces in the next room. A cool wind blew from the upper level, and a slight ice chipping sound echoed in the room. I hopped on Gilrush’s shoulders to get a better look at the next level. I saw a Vrock staring back as I finished climbing. As we started our battle with the beast the ice chipping stopped and from beneath the ground a swarm of demons burst forth.

We made quick work of the vrock, but the demon swarm proved trickier. Each time someone hit it, it spawned more beasts we had to battle. Luckily it appeared stupid, so it was easy to fool.

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