Alight on the Wings Of Legend

Leaving Belliksburg, part 2

We made our way out of the city with Therai. We ended up a little split up, but mostly got together outside the (southern) gate.

Rae’s contact betrayed us and attacked when we attempted to pay for the distractions. Faldor died in the scuffle and Rae nearly did as well. The well-in-range gate guards did nothing to influence the fight.

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Leaving Belliksburg, part 1

We fled the underground complex, through a number of guards/residents. As we fled through the portal I sensed at least half a dozen exits.

Rae found us some tiefling distractions. We arranged to send them in various directions around the city while we grab Therai and flee the city.

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Keeper stronghold, part 2

Laurelai was able to push one of the cubes out of place, dispelling the wall and granting us access to the rest of the complex. The complex is huge, the hallway we were in is almost imperceptibly curved. Rooms of note we discovered were:

  • cafeteria (occupied)
  • alchemy lab? (possibly occupied)
  • library (unoccupied); was missing the same section of history as the university library
  • alchemy lab (unoccupied); a strange contraption therein marked Davaro’s arm when he toyed with it.
  • another library? (possibly occupied)
  • an alchemy storage (unoccupied)
  • a large secret library, that appeared to have connections to four other libraries.

We ransacked the secret library for tomes of possible use quickly, as residents of the complex closed in and chased us out.

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Keeper stronghold, part 1

We explored down sewer tunnels despite some concern that the Keepers-modern may no longer be using this route. We do find a secret door, and beyond that a short passage leading to a small room with semi-recent corpses, spectres, and animated arbalests guarding a portal.

After defeating the guardians we pushed through the portal, which required a certain amount of control (arcana) to force through. It felt like there may be multiple endpoints to the portal, rather than the usual point to point variety. The endpoint we arrived at led to an area of mostly barracks-style rooms, with some single rooms mixed in. Two gelatinous cubes roamed the halls, apparently under active arcane control (from a source we never discovered). The rooms were all empty but not abandoned. The area we were in was sealed off from the greater complex by walls of force which were anchored to rows of 4" cubes all around.

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An ancient tiefling needs help

We met in the morning with guard captain Gwendalyn Hawkins. She wasn’t overly helpful, but gave us some information regarding the Keepers-modern.

Finally got a chance to meet with Therai. He wouldn’t talk much for fear of the Keepers-modern, but promised to talk more if we could get him out of the city.

Mikale Heyworth came to find us at the boarding house, brought us back to her warehouse. There we discovered a trapdoor leading down, into the sewers.

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Meeting the (modern) Keepers

We were attacked in our rooms overnight by human thugs. They carried no orders, papers, or clues. The guards who took them away after the struggle were able to find out that two of them hired the others to attempt to capture us.

The next morning, we tried to meet Therai, a tiefling from the time of the Kal-cu-mesh empire who had been in stasis until recently. Unfortunately, he wasn’t willing to talk with us – he got up and walked away. He left behind a note saying (paraphrased) ‘not here, the Keepers are watching’. We figured out where he was staying (4th/top floor of a dorm), even there he still didn’t want to talk. There were six university guards packed into the room next to his, they jumped Davaro Longstride when he poked his head in, and chased us out of the dorm, but didn’t pursue into the university proper.

The guard who took away the thugs from last night let us know they learned that the thugs were to take us to Mikale Heyworth’s warehouse. We checked it out, and met Shayna, a recruiter for the Keepers-modern. She wanted to bring us to a meeting with other Keepers, but insisted on blindfolding us for the trip. When we refused the blindfolds she attacked us in concert with three allies we hadn’t seen.

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Arrival in Belliksburg

Next morning we headed to the university to attempt to get some answers. Met with professor Alexander Weylose, in the history department. He didn’t have much for answers, but was able to point us toward Therai or Joshua Felgrim as more likely sources. He did mention that several pages from one of his books regarding the history of the tiefling empire had been removed.

Did some research in the university library while waiting to be able to meet professor Felgrim. Learned that there don’t appear to be any scholarly treatises about the aftermath after the last tiefling/dragonborn battle, also learned our first information about The Generals, and found more books with missing pages – even some with whole sections that had somehow been rewritten (magically?). A young student was spying on our research, upon questioning he gave up that he was doing so at the behest of professor Stephen Heckelshen.

We had lunch with professors Weylose and Felgrim, then continued meeting with professor Felgrim. Learned that the ritual packing list we acquired is out of order/chaotic, and further appears to be written by two hands. The reagent preservation instructions are completely mistaken, possibly a form of sabotage. He agreed to start looking into the elemental portal.

We then caught up with professor Heckelshen, who claimed he had simply pointed the student in our direction as likely being involved in investigating interesting battles. I have my doubts of this explanation.

Finally, we sought out Gid, an archaeologist in residence at the university. We learned that the dome where the elemental pillar formed was over Ashurta’s tomb and resting place. Also that the tieflings destroyed their own cities before abandoning them at the end of the war. Gid has been working with adventurers to rediscover artifacts from the end of war era called the hearts of the elements, with some success.

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Desert dragon

Left the tiefling encampment and headed north, intending to follow the mountain line to Belliksburg. After two days of walking we notice a small dot on the southern horizon; Davaro and Edge claim it’s a large winged creature, but the rest of us cannot tell.

Another day out we are attacked by a brown dragon. It took a bit out of most of us, but it was mostly curious and taste-testing us it appeared. It eventually left of its own volition. There was some conjecture that the tieflings put something in our gear to attract it.

After the dragon left, and we managed to evade some circling burrowing creatures, we made it to Belliksburg without significant further difficulty.

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Tiefling tribes

I recovered consciousness in a tiefling encampment. Mareka, their high priestess, performed the raise dead ritual for us in return for our four cards. As much as I’m glad to be back, I’m uncertain of the wisdom of that trade.

We also met Nuala, another tiefling tribeswoman.

We had dinner with Mareka while I recovered. She told us a few things about tiefling history.

  • she knows nothing of the elemental pillar
  • that Tragar Mendor corrupted the empire, and prolonged the dragonborn/tiefling war
  • that Orehana was the keeper of the Deck of Many Things
  • that the deck was capable of great power or great loss, but was essentially random; it’s user could be banished, killed,… or made more powerful than a king.
  • It is her interpretation of history that Orehana used the Void card in battling Tragar Mendor
  • her card (Comet) was lying on her bed after the elemental column appeared
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Discovering Tragar Mendar

The floodwaters carried us into a large tomb, to Orehana, an arcane advisor to Galeth Agrenthol, the last imperial lord of the Kal-cu-mesh (tiefling) empire.

There were six words carved around the sarcophagus where Orehana lay. I was only able to decipher three before the guardian awoke. Those words were ‘preserved’, ‘entombed’, and ‘sacrifice’.

I was told later that during/after the fight with the guardian, the great demon-dragon Tragar Mendor awoke/burst forth into this world and flew off.

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