Aberrent Bargains

General Shale called us in to extract information from a prisoner who had been sent from front by Captain Hibernius. The prisoner was thought to be able to provide location information for the giant’s Thrymspaker. Shale also cautioned us that the prisoner was surprisingly dangerous and had already “taken” a guard before they realized it. He warned us to ward our minds and ordered us to leave the prisoner alive.

With that in mind, we made our way to the maximum security brig and found that the prisoner was an Illithid, one who spoke to us through the guard he had under his control. On further interrogation, he had consumed the mind of the guard already, so it was a puppet, effectively dead already. The creature wasn’t exactly a prisoner so much as an emissary. Its race was aware of the peril presented by the breaking of the Chain and the Thrymspaker. They wanted to participate in our exodus. Their price was too high.

They wanted us to grant them free passage, a non-aggression pact, and the minds of one hundred thousand sentient beings. Though they coyly asked for the latter in the form of “a month of food”. It took more discussion to extract those details. Gareth speculated that we could just get Keffin in to extract the information. It volunteered that they had knowledge of Keffin, that his mind was unlike ours. Keffin might be able to extract information from the emissary, however, it also stated that this emissary did not have the knowledge and would not until the bargain was made. Weirdly, Gareth and Terhali started to speculate about feeding them goblins. Oli objected and pulled us away to discuss the matter privately.

We could not agree to those terms, period. Gareth proposed that he could make a counter offer that would be less terrible, so we let him. His counter offer was that we give them nothing and they tell us anyway. For they, like other vermin, would find a way to come along with us no matter what we did because we were taking too much real estate with us to be able to police it all. They didn’t consider it an acceptable deal and did not believe that we could turn away from their information. We made a convincing argument to the contrary and pushed back very hard.

In the process, I applied extreme pressure against it and forced it to reveal its home. The escape of the information from its mind came in a blast of images which hurt Oli and Gareth, but it did contain enough information for us to probably reconstruct the bizarre home of its kind and their giant brain vats. Having this information, I added to the pressure by saying that I would make sure they died first. The creature relented and suggested a counter offer.

In return for us giving them the coordinates of the destination, and our promise to not seek them out, they would provide the details to find the Thrymspaker. We took that deal to Oathsworn Command and they agreed, they also agreed to the creature’s added on stipulation that they get the coordinates within the hour of our learning it.

Their information came in the form of a series of images which revealed that the giants had weighted down a city sized mote, probably broken from their continent, and were polling it along towards the Chain. We considered various approaches to intervention.

Ultimately we decided to disguise some of the gnomish enclosed crablike walker vehicles for us to hide in. The Stormcrow, with rocket assist, was able to rapidly move along the top of the Maelstrom and place us between their mote and the Chain.

-Deacon Novius Carnifex Vergilius

Terhali's Tale (Part 3)

Terhali was in Gloomwraught, on a balcony of a townhouse overlooking the Hanging Wall. 

She could see the pale moon overhead, and the shadows lengthening at the base of the wall where an uncounted number had met their ends. She and Arjhun Medrash, he the last of the original Red Scales, stood, watching. A crowd had formed below. Hawkers moved through the crowd, selling sizzling bits of unidentifiable meat and filling held flagons with wine and stronger drink. The inhabitants of Gloomwraught always appreciated a spectacle, especially when one of the great was brought low in such a public fashion. She could see the horned head of a tiefling working his way through the crowd, slitting purses as the crowd's attention was drawn to the party mounting the scaffold. 

He of the Golden Eyes and Red Scales had finally been brought to the scaffold to face the headsman's blade. At least they'd granted him the grace of blade rather than the noose. 

Terhali looked at Medrash. "You and I need to keep his memory alive, his purpose." Medrash didn't say anything as he watched his clutchmate, the dragonborn who had given up his very name and who had founded the Order of the Red Scales centuries ago, calmly mounted the scaffold to meet his end. 

She could see robed figures on the dais. The raucous crowed fell silent and even the tiefling pickpocket stood to watch, the purse of a noble fop half-cut as his attention was taken by the scene before him. The gravity of the moment hit even the normally foolish and dissolute citizens of Gloomwraught, who ordinarily needed to be disciplined by the Deathless Watch. 

The ancient High Priestess of the Raven Queen, dressed in the obsidian feathered robes pronounced the sentence in a hoarse whisper. "Judgement "You shall have your head removed at the neck by blade and be returned to the Queen for Her judgment." 

Other clergy watched impassively, and Terhali swore that He of the Golden Eyes and Red Scales looked through to one in the back. He calmly knelt and held his head high, choosing to face the looming blade held by the shadar kai executioner, known for her artistry and expertise with all of the ritual weapons of execution. He nodded respectfully to her and held his head high. 

She reached her hand out to Medrash. "Love, we need to keep his purpose alive… don't you see? We can keep the Scales alive. Our cause is just. You can lead and I will be your second knife." 

Medrash stood impassively as the great blade came down with a meaty thunk, turned and walked away. 

* * *

Kallia watched Terhali on the balcony. She had no idea what the elf was seeing, or even if she was seeing anything at all. She didn't know what was happening but she sensed a… presence, something horribly malign. All the hairs on her body stood straight. She knew that whatever this was it was her moment. She reached out and touched her friend, finding Terhali's skin ice cold to the touch. Nonetheless, she pulled her in under the blanket, back into the house and away from the mists, back towards the heat-giving brazier. 

Terhali's Tale (Part 2)

Kallia wasn't asleep. She'd gladly, maybe desperately, participated in the revelry but she couldn't fall asleep afterwards and had lain on the overstuffed chair under the blanket. It had once been upholstered in fine satin, though it was, like much of everything else in Vergence, a more than a little worn.

So she saw her friend—-she hoped Terhali was her friend but had to confess she wasn’t sure—-standing on the balcony. She was staring into the empty, dark sky, and the cold mist was rolling through the streets. Kallia pulled the blanket close around herself and walked over to the curtain. Her breath came in the mist. Terhali was standing naked on the balcony, her back to Kallia. Kallia could see the elf standing, stock still and seemingly oblivious to the cold. A slight radiance seemed to emanate from her and Kallia could swear she could see the broken balcony railthrough her for a moment. 

Kallia had met Terhali earlier in the day. Ever since Lord Caudrian had died in the battle with the kraggen in Vergence, she'd been slowly decending from the heights of a Lord's betrothed to… well she wasn't sure because there didn't seem to be a bottom floor. She'd sold the jewels she'd gotten from him, but Caudrian's remaining men had made off with a lot and she knew her time was limited before everything was gone. Her family simply wasn't important enough and besides it wasn't even clear whether her father was still alive. And what difference did it make because he was in Vastia anyway? She'd come to Vergence with Caudrian and now she had no way of getting back to Vastia. 

She'd been looking for a new place to live after Caudrian's townhouse was confiscated for refugees and all her servants had left. But she'd gotten lost in a bad part of town, assuming any part of town except the Emperor's palace or the Oathsworn barracks could be said to be good these days. And she'd run into slavers. She'd done her best to run, but they had a wide-mawed war hound, and there were many, a half dozen at least, and besides, they were experienced at preying on such as her. Soon they had her driven into a cul-de-sac.

She'd found herself in the circle of them, her dress ripped as the Lumerian devil-blooded sergeant leading them tore it and nearly threw her towards the waiting rough hands of two of his men. "You're going to fetch a good price, bitch, but first we'll gentle you down.” He laughed. “Luigi, Umberto, you’ll get your turn… hold her!"

Terhali appeared suddenly out of the mist. Kallia knew who Terhali was. She'd been at the Emperor’s Palace with Caudrian when Terhali was there and Kallia had witnessed it. She'd also been in Vastia when Smergway was overthrown and the Emperor brought justice, and knew the elf woman dressed in motley who'd mocked Smergway and killed his men left and right with a blade from the shadows, with the Emperor himself. The last she'd heard, Terhali was dead, fallen in yet another of the titanic battles that seemed to be the fate of all now, but evidenty that was mistaken. 

Suddenly, for a third time, Terhali appeared out of the mists in the middle of the Lumerians, dressed in funeral garb and decorated with the Raven. They were simply too stunned to react. Terhali calmly walked through the line to the Lumerian sergeant. He stared, looking more like a landed fish than a veteran turned slaver. Terhali reached up and calmly plucked his left eye from its socket while a ghostly, mutilated great cat leapt out of the sky and savaged the wardog.

Kallia knew a good chance when she saw it and took the opportunity to slip from Luigi’s rough hands after bringing her heel down on the top of his, hard

Kallia had hidden and watched as Terhali methodically and passionlessly slaughtered the remaining slavers with her bare hands as the great cat ran down any that moved to escape. 

So she’d found herself with Terhali, who had few words for her, and seemed to be looking for something. She spoke in elven, a language that Kallia knew a few words in but she didn't understand what Terhali was saying. At this point Kallia didn't know where she was in Vergence or even have a place to be, and this was as good as any place, and so she'd followed. 

As she thought about it, staring at her friend on the balcony, Kallia realized that, more than herself, Terhali needed taking care of, and that she, Kallia d'Este, youngest daughter of Lord Antoni d'Este, once the betrothed of dead Lord Caudrian Agostino, and thus nobody at all anymore, was the one to do it.

Terhali's Tale (Part 1)
Terhali woke up, the scarred and Oathsworn-tattooed arm of a sailor wrapped around her. A ship's watch bell sounded off in the distance and a cool breeze blew in through the open window across the room from the bed, curtains moving slightly in the salt-tinged air. 

A woman—-her name was Kallia—-by her look and wavy dark hair, from the southlands and had a bit of fae blood herself, was asleep on the chair dragged into the room, covered by a blanket that was once a satin curtain. A Kodanian watchman lay on the floor, sleeping under a cloak. 

She didn't know who the sailor was, or care. She'd had many lovers in her lifetime of unknown length. (Or was this a second lifetime?) He was neither the best nor the worst, but his rough hands had been the first to touch her after… after she was cut in half by the centuries-old blade of a creature from the time when the Gods warred with the Primordials. 

She wasn't entirely sure who or what she was anymore, not since returning from the Shadowfell and she'd needed something tangible, so she'd left Raven's Hall for… somewhere. 

After wandering the streets, where she'd found Kallia, she ended up in a tavern on Vergence's waterfront. The tavern was in an abandoned, war-damaged townhouse that had clearly belonged to someone wealthy in the past. Now the rich man who owned it was nowhere to be found. Maybe he was dead, or a refugee himself. Others in the refugee-filled city had put it to use. A one-armed dwarf, as wide as he was tall, massive muscles rippling, watched over the place, mace at his belt. An old woman was selling beer from large clay urns and some dubious meat was roasting on a spit over scavenged building timbers. 

Terhali realized she didn't have any money, but no one seemed to care.

The sailor and his shipmates were singing drinking songs with a motley assortment of waterfront inhabitants, including a group of Kodanian guardsmen. Terhali had Kallia with her by then and the two of them had joined the sailors. They'd all sung songs together. She'd raised her clear soprano voice in an elven lament, accompanied by a sailor's concertina and an odd Kodanian lute. 

Eventually they'd made their way to the upper floor, the old master bedroom. 

The wind blew the clouds away from the full moon, and she stared at the rays of moonlight, entranced by the dust motes held in its light. She slipped from the soldier's embrace and walked to the open balcony and stood in the night, looking out through the darkness. 

When she was dead she'd not seen the best lover. Part of her wanted to, but she'd killed him and it was hard to know what he'd think of her shade, or that she had to rebuild the Red Scales that he'd betrayed to live again. 

She wondered where Keffin was. Maybe he could explain all this, or as likely he couldn't, but at least he'd say things in a way she'd believe. 

Council of War

We met in council with our allies, Dwarves, Gnomes, Elves, Eladrin, Shadar-Kai, Craggen, Orcs, and Goblins. At the Emperor’s behest, I brought them into our circle of secrecy regarding our coming doom at the hands of forces of apocalypse who work to free the mad god imprisoned within our world.

After they absorbed the issues before us, Kong Meng laid out our basic plans to have our civilian population flee from our Abyssal home to another world, one which the Raven Queen will select for us.

Commodore Shale was elevated to the rank of General, and will lead the exodus of our people.

Additional reports were made for us by various factions who need help to deal with challenges which have arisen.

The Dwarves reported that the deep guard have been betrayed from within. Some among them had planted charges along carefully chosen fault lines, chosen so as to explode out the heart of the deep guard of Kar Kanazan and drop it into the Maelstrom. This is a grave loss. To assist in holding back the creatures of the Maelstrom, we will send Imperrial troops of the Oathsworn who are familiar with close quarters urban combat. To assist in sussing out any remaining taint or corruption, we will ask Captain Keffin to investigate.

The Elves reported that the Maelstrom has manifested in the Feywild. This has disturbed the Fomorians, and their movements now endanger our grain harvesting operations. We will lend them troops to assist in the evacuation of our harvesting operation. I and some others may also personally make raids against the Formorians, for there may yet be elves who can be freed, and their wealth of residuum could be highly beneficial to our exodus operation. Similarly, through Mirage, any dragons who wished to ally with us had been invited to come and negotiate with us.

Baroness Castica reported that troop recruitment had been going well, but there was a significant shortfall in capable trainers to cope with the giants and maelstrom creatures that we face. Captain Hibernius will make constructs that mimic our enemies so that our troops can be adequately trained against our foes. Others who can be spared from other efforts will also assist in training when possible.

Oli agreed to the Emperor’s request to head up the magical and engineering challenge of making the Exodus possible.

Commander Reale brought up a contentious suggestion that the Devils worshipped by our infernalist citizens of Lumeria may have common cause with us against the forces of chaos. We agreed that no alliance or bargain would be sought. We would simply inform them of the situation to the best of our knowledge and allow them the opportunity to send forces to fight the demona and thrymspaker servants. With a variety of caveats regarding this not constituting any grounds for them to interfere with us in any way shape or form.

The Gnomes reported that they were completing their complete abandonment of the GIPTA homeland and were integrating their industrial and military capabilities with the Oathsworn.

The Shadar Kai reported that they were in the process of sending their fleet, along with ten thousand capable warriors, to join us on the battle line.

The Orcs reported that the depredations of the giant were driving them from their mountain homelands, and so they too would join us. Their price being that we allow their women, children, and blind old men to join the Exodus, and to burn the bodies of their fallen warriors as is right and proper. We’ve certainly had allies who are far more difficult to work with.

The goblins complained about their lodgings outside the dome of Vergence. We didn’t really have a good solution for that.

The Craggen reported that the Crag was being readied as the vanguard point of the battle against the forces of the mad god.

The Emperor informed us that he would not be leaving with the Exodus, but would instead be staying behind to lead our forces as best we can against whatever is loosed.

I confirmed that my posting is here, in the Abyss fighting against the ultimate enemy of the gods, and as such I would work with Hewalna to establish a proper shrine for Erathis in the Crag.

- Deacon Novius Carnifex Vergilius

An Audience with the Raven Queen

After climbing a few sets of stairs, we found our way back into the surface of the Necropolis. In the distance we noted spirits moving towards an ancient half ruined temple. Per our instructions, we blindfolded ourselves again, and proceeded for one final time upon the Paths of the Dead

Our stumbling through the rubble strewn city brought us to the stairs of the temple. At the top of the stairs, I called out that I Deacon Novius Carnifex Vergilius of Erathis sought an audience to propose alliance and information exchange. A sepulchral voice replied that supplication was the more expected request. I added that we also came to bear a request regarding the soul of Terhali. After a few minutes, our request was granted and we were ushered into the presence of an Exarch of the Raven Queen.

Along the way, we were allowed to remove our blindfolds. Around us we beheld a majestic, albeit damage and decaying, temple complex. We were escorted into a preparation room, its only decor being a slab for the receiving of the bodies of the dead. Oli sent back to Oathsworn Command and arranged for Sehan to reverse portal in to join us. Oathsworn Command had no additional instructions for us, other than “Hurry”. We’re supposed to hurry up a divine audience? Such replies sadden me in their indication of desperation and lack of foresight. Fortunately for them, I am an advisor, not an Oathsworn, so was under no compulsion to exercise undue haste.

The Exarch was an impressive being who resembled a larger and more formidable version of the Sorrowsworn guardians who had come against us in the labrynth. In our interview with him, Sehan pressed the case for Terhali, and was reinforced by both Oli and Gareth to such a degree that he agreed to press our case for her return. Furthermore, our unique experiences with the Maelstrom, and the Chains, and the perils which will come against us all, were passed on and given such weight that we were invited to the presence of the resident Aspect of the Raven Queen. A not quite unprecedented, but certainly rare and signal honor.

He conducted us to a large hall which terminated in a set of immense iron gates. The proverbial gates of death made manifest. Spirits passed through intact. We had to teleport. Oli and Lirra were able to accomplish this due to their natures. Gareth used a potion. I transported Guan Yu through, as I would have transported myself and a foe. He barely registered having even been struck. Beyond the gates, the Exarch paused the flow of the spirits, and indicated that we should rise to meet the large and mournfully beautiful winged woman who passed judgement upon the dead.

After some formalities, Gareth offered that she should take the knowledge of what he had experienced directly from his mind. The experience looked quite uncomfortable for him as she seemed to draw upon his life essence in the process. Nevertheless, his gambit was highly successful in that it gave her an instant understanding of the mysteries which we had uncovered and the challenges which faced us all.

There was a great deal of discussion regarding possible courses of action. She agreed to help us, as long as we would bring her people, the Shadar Kai, with us. We agreed to her condition as it seemed more than fair. In exchange, she offered
1. The Shadar Kai would lend military aid to our defense against the Thrymspaker’s forces.
2. She provided an adamantine urn suitable for the trapping of the spark of the Thrymspaker, once it has been enchanted accordingly.
3. She would seek among the worlds for a suitable refuge for our civilian population. Though large migrations are forbidden among primes, our people are not in a prime, they are in the Abyss, and therefore fall into a grey area which may be exploited by the Mistress of all that is grey. Once found she would send the coordinates for it to Gareth.
4. Emissaries of hers would stand ready to warn the gods, and provide immediate update regarding the when and where of the breaking of the chains.
5. She would give what aid she could in moving the parts of Zhia that we sought to save to the refuge.

Sehan spoke again on behalf of Terhali, though somewhat truculently when he learned that his soul did not carry sufficient weight to free hers. He also indicated that Terhali’s mother was Sehanine, which was somewhat surprising, but did little to sway the Queen. The Raven Queen eventually acceded to our request that Terhali be restored to work among us, at the cost of her giving up allegiance or claim of any other gods, save the Raven Queen. Oli, Gareth, snd Sehan objected to this and Gareth proposed a counter bargain that Terhali should instead promise to restore the Red Scales. The Raven Queen agreed to that deal, on the principle that Gareth should also assist in that by giving instruction for half of each year of his life, should he complete his mission and relieve himself from the curse of Torog. Once back in our realm, we should raise Terhali and she would have three days to agree with the terms. We agree to these terms.

In parting, the Raven Queen noted that she had not been so impressed with mortals since the First Emperor. An interesting remark, perhaps Emperor Marcus will have some comment upon it. She also warned us not to try the paths again, for she might not be resident at their end for much longer. Similarly, she could not vouch that any who die hereafter would lie within her power.

The Exarch then conducted us away, down a passage which mysteriously exited in Gloomwrought. We cleaned up some the undead disturbances in the streets before returning to the Stormcrow and thence to Vergence. Once home, we were debriefed by the Emperor himself, who was glad to hear that we had secured tangible divine assistance. We raised Terhali, and she was even more reflective and given over to brooding due to the recent discoveries about her history and obligations.

- Deacon Novius Carnifex Vergilius

Lord Shaes

Our search of the complex found it to be an ancient and long abandoned facility. Designed to imprison vampires. Though not just any vampires. Two rather unusually powerful and ancient vampires, along with a few of their servants.

Extraordinarily powerful wards had been placed to prevent any vampires who escaped their cells from escaping the complex. Tragically, these wards also destroyed any spirits who crossed them. As the way out was beyond the wards, the spirits were wandering into the wards to their dissolution. Oli determined that the wards were tied to the existence of something within the complex.

We assumed that the sealed vault, and its magical wards against the undead, held the target of the other wards which blocked the new Path of the Dead. Oli put up a circle against undead to prevent any more spirits from being destroyed by the wards, then we prepared to deal with whatever lay beyond the door of the Vault.

Oli unlocked the Vault to reveal a heavily armored figure who said something in a language we didn’t understand. Oli eventually figured out how to communicate with it, but was relatively neglectful in translating the conversation. Apparently it offered some sort of deal whereby we could leave and it wouldn’t kill us. Oli didn’t accept the deal and, in its arrogance, it did not regard us as a significant threat. Apparently the servants of the Raven Queen had been unable to defeat us, and so imprisoned it.

Negotiations collapsed and it attacked us. Guan Yu gave him a swift taste of the unexpected level of challenge we presented by catching Shaes initial charge on his halberd and knocking him to the dusty floor. Then another form, an eerily beautiful woman, rose from the sarcophagus and clouded our minds making it difficult for us to maneuver. She also did something designed to suppress the innate abilities of her foe, in this case she made the tactical mistake of choosing to use this power on myself. My training allowed me to cast her power off. Then by the glory of Erathis I was moved next to her, smote her, and then cast her down at Guan Yu’s feet with the burning light of purity seeping from her wounds. We made swift work of her, much to the chagrin of Shaes.

Shaes proved exceptionally tough, and it took us quite a while to bring him down. In the end, he turned to mist and fled. I pursued him, and lit up the Candle which Captain Keffin had made for me. Its light returned him to solid form. We then made swift work of him.

With his passing, the destructive wards went down. Oli broke her circle, and the spirits of the dead were now free to proceed up the stairs on the new Path of the Dead.

- Deacon Novius Carnifex Vergilius

Creatures of the Endless Night

I scouted the immediate area near our prospective camp site and found a hidden door. Hoping that it might present an area obscure to maelstrom creatures, I investigated the area and was fiercely assaulted by a hidden foe. I fell back to gain some healing from Oli. Soon afterwards, fanged humanoids burst forth from the soil of the excavated area and moved to attack us.

Guan Yu destroyed the tapestry that my assailant had hidden behind and smote him mightily. Backed up by Lirra, and her summoned animal, he was able to get the better of it. Meanwhile, I worked with Gareth and Oli to destroy the weirdly fanged bloodsuckers. Fortunately, their foul nature was unable to withstand the radiant majesty of Erathis.

On further study, we determined that they were all vampires. Furthermore, the ones below, who did not speak, were some sort of servant form to a greater vampire. That greater vampire was not the rapier wielding figure in the hidden room, but rather its master whom it had said was now awake and thirsty. As the Raven Queen is not generally favorable to undead, one such creature lurking in the Necropolis is somewhat mysterious. Perhaps it had lain buried and obscured until the recent uprising of the Maelstrom.

Oli secured an area for us to rest by using various warding rituals.

- Deacon Novius Carnifex Vergilius

The Shadow of the Maelstrom

After our descent into the depths we were assaulted by hideous amorphous creatures composed of the bones of the dead. They were enormously tough and had a deeply disturbing tendency to wrench the vitality from us to strengthen themselves. It took a considerable effort to destroy all three of them, although Erathis Clockwork Demand was extremely effective in reducing them to their constituent parts. Unfortunately, Guan Yu was significantly less successful in applying his halberd to the job. I think these creatures may have discomfited him more than he cared to admit.

Within each of them, after they exploded in a shower of bone fragments, was a dark shard. Similar in some ways to the Chaos shards which corrupt the creatures of the Maelstrom. As we explored the cavern, Oli deemed it to be highly unstable. This was doubly unfortunate, for most of us were on the verge of exhaustion and would have liked an opportunity to rest. Lirra used her uncanny ability to see around corners to scout ahead and identified the odd winds, vibration, and distant roaring sound as coming from an immense vortex at the bottom of a great chasm. A vortex which was unmistakably similar to the Maelstrom.

We followed a soul through a tunnel to the north and found ourselves in a more stable subterranean complex of worked stone. The part we were in appeared to be unoccupied, so we began preparations for a place of rest.

-Deacon Novius Carnifex Vergilius

Vestiges of the Dawn War

Our exploration continued until we came up a tower of bones. The room sealed itself shut when we attempted to leave, then the bones burst forth into a bizarre tentacled horror which tried to kill us. We surrounded it and bashed it to splinters, only to find the tower reformed just as we found it. But we could then leave the room. Peculiar place, even for the shadowfell.

Marching onward, we found a shrine to the Raven Queen. Within it, a large crevasse had opened along one side and ghostly armored figures occupied the pews. They were chanting, a language which Oli identified as a dark and ancient form of Supernal. I inquired as to whether they were praying in praise of the Raven Queen, or to do something else. Oli replied that it was something else, they were bad things seeking the return of the Dawn War.

The fight was soon joined, and they were further supported by an enormous abyss corrupted wraith which floated up from the crevasse. These creatures howled at us and approaching them assaulted our minds with terrifying visions from the Dawn War. Their insubstantial nature made retaliation against them ineffective, until I lit the Candle which Captain Keffin had constructed for such an occasion and lent to me. Within the light of the candle, they returned to solidity and were fully subject to our attacks. The fight soon swung in our favor and we dispatched them.

After the fight, we watched a spirit enter the room, and then go down the crevasse into the depths below. Perhaps the same depths from which Lirra had heard the raspy breathing of air into long dead lungs. We surveyed the crevasse to determine the best way to enter it, for it seemed likely that we must investigate it to clear out whatever interference exists with the Paths of the Dead.

-Deacon Novius Carnifex Vergilius


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