Date: 6/8/1479 DR
|Shadow Dancer’s Mask||Galidion||Marshaling Point||Found stashed amongst Kyrion’s belongings|
|Storm Shield||Searynox||Ritual Chamber||Upon the alter, waiting to be disenchanted|
DAMAIA AND SEARYNOX ANNOUNCED THAT THEY’RE GOING TO HAVE A BABY!! CONGRATULATIONS YOU TWO!!!
As the Outsiders are resting, part way through the night, they hear gnolls searching the fortress. They take out the new guards and continue to explore. They interrupt a Shadar-Kai training the gnolls on how to use Shadar-Kai weapons and discover secret passages running throughout the fortress. In the great hall, they find Fangren in the midst of his ritual to become an Exarch. They attack and finally disconnect his portal to the Abyss. With the gnolls cleared out of the fortress, they invoke the ritual to release Amyria from the sword.
The Outsiders were sacked out in the cells, trying to rest and recuperate, so exhausted that they fully relied on Vylify’s trancing to keep watch. After only about 6 hours of sleep, the Eladrin began to hear gnolls searching around the fortress, but he couldn’t understand what they were saying. He roused Elarinya and Galidion to stand guard, and then woke the others. From what the Ranger could hear, some gnoll patrols hadn’t reported in, so they were searching the fortress for the lazy, good-for-nothing…. The Outsiders didn’t want the alarms to be set off now, so they quietly got into position to silence the search party. As they did so, Timur reassured the three ex-captives to stay put, while the Artificer checked in on Gilgathorn. The Bounty Hunter was still tied up, but he was conscious and looking right at the Eladrin. As the Swordmage initiated battle, ‘Thorn indicated that he’d keep quiet.
The group rushed up the stairs, getting the drop on the search party and quickly silenced them… for good. Vylify indicated that their captive was conscious and Rinya wanted to question him, but the rest of the group was determined to clean out the rest of the Fortress before any more reinforcements could arrive.
The hallway they were following ended in double doors. The party listened and they could hear what sounded like combat practice and shouted instructions coming from the room on the other side. Galidion kicked in the door and they rushed into the Marshaling Point (#8). Many gnoll recruits were fighting against practice dummies or their Warmaster in the center of the room. Off to one side stood a Shadar-Kai instructing them in their drills. As the party rushed into the room, the gnolls reacted with military precision, getting into formation around their leader. As soon as Searynox stepped into the room, he recognized the saw-tooth blade, covered perpetually in blood, as the Wicked Fang blade that Bruenor Hammerstrike had been killed after crafting it. He also recognized the Shadar-Kai weaponmaster as Kyrion, Bruenor’s assassin. The Outsiders rushed into the room and hit the gnolls hard. Kyrion surprised Rinya by knocking her sword out of her hands, catching it, and then throwing at Galidion, where it stuck in his shoulder. He was clearly a master! Just as the group thought that they’d cleared away all of the recruits, Damaia noticed movement behind the arrow slits in the wall and heard the pounding of paws, just before more recruits burst up through the trap doors in the center of the room. With fresh recruits to attack, the battle grew even more intense. As soon as the leaders fell, the rest of the fighters lost cohesion. While Tim and Damaia held the room, Seaynox and Rinya took the western secret passage to take care of the archers stationed there. Galidion took the secret passage east, while Vylify began searching the room.
Let me make my orders clear: you are there only to train the gnolls, not to fight for them. Watch yourself; they are a bloodthirsty and violent lot, and they may turn on you. You may need to remind them from time to time that I pay them well for their services, and that I can withdraw my support for their butchery at any time. Be careful of their leader, for he is far more cunning than others would give him credit for. I would not have even considered trying to trick them into service with that “Emissary” deception that riled up that fool Sinruth. These gnolls have the power of their foul god on their side. They are not to be trifled with.
The gnoll that the Cleric and the Ranger were chasing, escaped down the dark passage, fleeing the fortress, never to be seen again. Galidion’s passage led to a fork, the eastern most one led to the Meditation Chamber (#7), the room that ‘Thorn had come out of, but which they’d never searched. The northern and southern chambers of the room were diametrically opposed, chaos and order and the Shadovar could feel the pull of the two forces on his very soul. The room made him uncomfortable so he returned to his companions. The three in the main room had found a lot of gold and precious gems that they could sell in Overlook. The Artificer spoke of using the Wicked Fang for himself, but Timur reminded him that the Dwarves were offering a reward for it’s return. On the body of the Shadar-Kai they found a note:
After the party had regrouped, they followed the north hallway. Every step they took, they could hear a deep thrumming noise coming from the room ahead, the air around them crackled with energy. Peeking through the double doors, they could see that they had finally made it to the Ritual Chamber (#9). Fangren and two of his robed disciples stood at the top of a raised alter, behind which glowed a bloody red portal. At the foot of the raised dais paced two demonic looking hyenas (Crocottas) and scattered around the room were the captives of the Rethild Vale, cruely experimented on and turned into Abyssal Wretches. Rising 10 feet above the floor was a curtained off balcony that ran around the outside of the whole room. Since Galidion had mentioned a fork in the eastern secret passage way, Vylify and Damaia wanted to see if that passage would lead them up to the balcony. The group waited while the two mages backtracked. Sure enough, their hunch paid off and once the mages were in place above the room, as the rest of the group snuck in to attack.
Galidion raced for the dais, but the rest of the group was cut off from their comrade by the wretches who were protecting their master. Fangren had no choice other than to break off his ritual to summon the power of Yeenoghu and become an Exarch, so that he could defend himself from the Swordmage’s Aegis of Assault.
I cannot stress the importance of holding Fortress Graystone. Among the assignments I have given you, this should be your top priority. I have armed you well enough that you should be able to repel all invaders.
Do what you will with your prisoners, but continue taking them. Focus your efforts on those who seem to be of some importance; do not waste your time with farmers and commoners.
I am sending someone to train your recruits in the use of our weapons, at your request. However, I expect you to leave this one alone. The witch I sent to you was one of my personal advisors, and now she is ruined. Do not treat my people so callously as you do your own.
Drawing on the power of the portal to the Elemental Chaos, Fangren called forth the Claw of Yeenoghu to help battle at his side. It was a long drawn out battle, where Galidion did his best to distract the gnoll Shaman, kept healthy once Searynox could make his way close. The ranger and the Paladin fought hard to destroy the wretches and the Crocottas, while Vylify and Damaia rained down spells from above, slowly making their way around to the rift so that they could work on closing it as Amyria had recommended. The fighting was intense with both sides taking serious damage. Finally, Vylify and Damaia made it around behind the rift, joined by Searynox and Timur. The mages used their magic which began disconnecting the portal from Yeenoghu’s realm, while the priests prayed to Tempus and Kelemvor to get their divine intervention in cutting the connection as well. Slowly but surely the great forces wielded by these party members tore Yeenoghu’s realm (the Abyss) away from the rift, leaving it only open to the Elemental Chaos. Severed from his god, Fangren was cut down by Rinya and Galidion working together, and the otherworldly Claw disappeared as well.
The Outsiders let out a collective sigh as their job was now complete. They spent some time looting the bodies before burning them in the three huge cauldrons in the room. In a pouch at Fangren’s side they found the included note.
Just as they were getting ready to leave, a weak voice from the platinum sword reminded them, telepathically, to perform her ritual, to free her. The Dragonborn took the sword from Rinya and held it aloft as he spoke the words to the ritual that he’d been taught. The rest of the group backed away from the dais, Galidion’s dire prophecy of the sword unleashing a dragon to eat them kept niggling away at their doubts.
A vortex of brilliant energy opened up in the air as the platinum sword was gently tugged from Searynox’s hands. It rose to hover in the air before the newly formed conduit, tendrils of silver light reaching out to touch it. The group was blinded by a brilliant flash, then an instant later, the ritual chamber fell silent.
(How Galidion saw things – Galidion’s Revelation 1)
Standing before them was a young human female of unearthly beauty and grace. Her silver hair hung down her back, a band of chalk-white pigment stretching from one temple to the other across her eyes. She was garbed in armor made of slender, overlapping plates. In one hand, she held a thin leather-bound tome; in the other, the platinum longsword.
“I am Amyria,” she said. “Who are you, and why am I here?”
Galidion had everyone so scared that a dragon was trapped in the sword so when they discovered it was only a Deva, it was quite the let down!