Dukas Journal – Date – 08.22.2011
So the four ‘Adventurers’ I have been expecting have finally arrived. They are somewhat more… inexperienced than I had hoped. I was hoping that I would be able to work with heroes a little further along in their careers. There’s also the obstacle that they are, as a whole, a little more … pious than I would prefer. There’s a paladin AND a holy Avenger who arrived together from Corellon’s Temple of the Moon.
Upon arrival the drunken -dwarf-* deva sea captain was showing them around town as their tour guide.
The trio arrived safely at Pelor’s Temple of the Light. There they rendezvoused with paladin Captain Vladimir and received orders to investigate the death cult plaguing Westport. The bodies buried in the sacred chapel graveyard had been disappearing and causing gravesites to collapse in on themselves. The posted guards saw nothing over the last few nights.
While exploring the chapel grounds, they met the refugee red dragonborne sorceror Medrash scouring the sacred chapel of ‘Holy goodness’ for forbidden texts of evil.
In hindsight, I should have paid more attention to Medrash’s arrival. Apparently the red dragons of this world are more martial and military minded whilst the blue dragons are magical and academic. I had previously just assumed he was a refugee of the war up north, but it might be a bit more personal with that one.
ANYHOW, after briefly exploring the chapel grounds, the party discovered that William the Groundskeeper had in fact lost his faith in Obad-Hai (the neutral but relatively benevolent nature-ry god of nature) and discovered his faith in Malar, a far more cruel god of nature and lycanthropes. It has been widely speculated that this faith realignment occurred after his daughter disappeared several years prior.
NEVERTHELESS, it appeared to be a red herring as Malar would not have been allied with a death cult. Evil nature gods still hate the undead the same amount as non-evil nature gods do. Blech. The party decided to watch over the graves that evening.
Like clockwork, the death cult summoned one of the coffins to their lair, leaving behind an astral trail for our heroes to follow. Unfortunately, they lost the trail midway there and I had to step in. I’m still not sure if I regret showing myself so early, but it was OH SO VERY frustrating trying to watch them parse the transmutation imprint from the conjuration/summoning ley line. IT’S THE GREEN ONE FOR AZMODEUS’S SAKE! ARGH!
Upon arrival, they found the sewer entrance to the Death Cult’s lair. There was some contrived, idiotic riddle upon the manhole cover, but the answer was blood. It’s an amateur death cult, the answer is always blood.
Upon entering, they found a small hole in the wall through which they watched a small initiation ceremony. Crude map below:
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The paladin proceeded down the corridor incapacitating several cult members (and triggering a few traps) along her way. Whilst the rest of the party tore a hole in the wall while the cultists escaped. They noticed the cult leader as he left and made sure to summon up a special skeletal surprise.
(Note to self: though Eli may often be uninspired, do attempt a necrotic aligned skeletal construct with hellfire aura at some point. It was far more effective than it appears in theory.)
Dan, Dave, Jordan, Mike
Death Cult for Cutie