A Fugal Restitution - Week 2 Day 2 (17/02/19) Edit
The party awoke from a deep slumber, confronted by Haera who appeared to be responsible for their hazy memories, and she demanded to know why Zsaeryus sent them. She had clearly been trapped in Gina's Gauntlet for an extremely long time and was prone to violence, particularly when the party said that they had no idea who Zsaeryus is. The party escaped their manacles when Haera left, and Claudius appeared from the stasis block as it melted in the corner of the room. The party decided to jump Haera with a surprise attack on her return. She made easy work of them, demonstrating powerful magical abilities far beyond anything they'd seen before in modern-day Nova - even turning the party against one-another. They escaped thanks to Claudius' divine spells clearing their minds and Zenyth's bear attack on her Hook Horrors, leading her to release a magical scream that made all but Zenyth run in fear. On their hurried escape, Magnus accidentally triggered a couple of traps, including reading some cursed arcane runes that started turning her to stone, and opening a cursed tome that released a Gibbering Mouther. Hawkin seemed most affected by the fear and ran straight into a series of puzzle rooms, even escaping Ludo's grasp who tried to stop him. The party eventually regrouped in the puzzles rooms and eventually solved them. The first room had a lever that opened the floor into a fresh, parallel version of the three rooms. The second room had a long, floating staircase with a lever at the top and undead attackers attempting to guard the lever. The third room had a number of ornamental and magical items (which Hawkin scooped up into his Bag of Holding) and a simple lever in the middle of the room. Magnus used her potion of gaseous form to easily bypass the traps and pull the levers, but was separated from the others as they couldn't fly. They had to use a rope to avoid falling in the first room, and Zenyth was able to climb the stairs from the underneath as a giant spider in the second room to avoid being hit by arrows (after Hawkin's unsuccessful solo attempt when he was getting no support). The party escaped the puzzle rooms and regrouped outside, ready to continue looking for the exit to this dungeon.
Portentous Liberation - Week 2 Day 2 (03/03/19) Edit
In the hopes of avoiding any more conflict in their precarious situation, the party searched for the safest route to reach the Holy Enchanter and get out of Gina's Gauntlet. A cave-in blocked their way, but Magnus opted to avoid crawling through a tunnel to get past, after she heard some scuttling and saw an antenna. They also avoided a water-logged room, and instead used Elreon to block a broken Sentinel so they could all run past. The dungeon began to look familiar and they found their route back to the Holy Enchanter. They had enough silver, but they realised that they would struggle to get enough Elven blood from Magnus alone to work the enchanter, so had to come up with a plan. Not really wishing to risk her life and experience immense pain for a plan that might not work, Magnus wasn't happy to be the sole donor, kept alive through Elreon's and Claudius' healing magic. Instead, she decided to parley with Haera. Surprisingly, she convinced Haera that her cooperation was required for everybody to escape the dungeon. Eager to escape, Haera went along with the plan and sacrificed much of her own blood. The party healed her from the brink of death and successfully enchanted Elreon's maul. Zenyth, who had been keeping watch for the party, decided to keep a low profile upon hearing of Haera's cooperation since she clearly remained hostile towards him for attacking her Hook Horrors. They all left the dungeon together through a stone slab that created a portal for them. Upon finally being freed Haera passed out. Magnus left her a note and the party began their journey back to Oilan. After a minute or two, they heard Haera's laughter in the distance.
A Welcome Return - Week 2 Day 3 (24/03/19) Edit
Half a day from Oilan, the party encountered a troop of soldiers led by Reus Scorn in the midst of a fight with undead. The soldiers had suffered a number of casualties, but healing from Claudius and Zenyth saved a number of them that may have succumbed to their injuries otherwise. Magnus took out some of the remaining skeletons from long range, while Elreon charged in and tested out his new enchanted maul, finding it to explode with radiant energy when destroying undead. Reus later explained that they had been sent by Duke Fuke to assist in the undead problem that Oilan was being threatened by on the behest of General Rhall. Reus promised to do what he could to get the party an audience with General Rhall. The unit was nearby so could act as a rapid response, but Fuke was unwilling to send any more aid due to their own threats of demons in the north. During the night, Fluffy was spotted approaching the camp, hungry. Zenyth was able to calm Fluffy down with some leftover meat and calm down the soldiers who weren't happy with a giant two-headed dog near their camp, although they subsequently gave them a wide berth. Once the party reached Oilan, they were escorted to see Queen Valerie in her throne room who questioned them about the undead threat after a number of reports of undead had come back. The party explained that they had discovered silver to be effective against the undead, and that there was a powerful flaming skull with the undead. The scarred, grey-haired man to her right was interested in starting a conscription programme and pushing more funding to military, but the Queen was reluctant to take money away from her people. Magnus noted muted surprise from Queen Valerie towards the man after Magnus mentioned the troop from Mert. She also mentioned that they may require more assistance from Chancellor Brunt after the party emphasised the importance of magic over steel in this war. The lady veiled in purple to the Queen's left communicated only in whispers to the Queen, but Elreon discovered her to be Yuan-ti by using his Divine Sense. Queen Valerie told the party that there was an emergency council meeting today and that their presence may be requested again tomorrow. The remainder of the day was spent shopping and identifying the magical items they had found. Zenyth stayed outside the city with Fluffy and sent an animal messenger to his mentor asking for advice.
Check - Week 2 Day 3 (07/04/19) Edit
Leaving Magnus to identify their treasures, the rest of the party separated to complete various tasks during this downtime. Zenyth, still adamant on keeping Fluffy safe, attempted to train Fluffy to not attack humans and to instead find nourishment elsewhere. Although this didn't initially go entirely to plan, Fluffy showed some promise after Zenyth forcefully stopped him from attacking a group of travellers. Hawkin and Claudius went to the Lion's Head in an attempt to uncover some information on the lady veiled in purple. Hawkin used his knowledge of thieves' cant to attract the attention of any individuals who may have information that can be bought. He met Fam who, after sufficient payment, explained that the person in question is Lady Mai - the Régan ambassador and counsellor to the Queen. He also explained that she's sometimes called "The Undrowned" as she was the only survivor after her ship from Réga was destroyed in a storm. Elreon felt uncertain as to what course of action he should take in dealing with Lady Mai so chose to pray to his god for advice. He felt reminded of the importance of putting an end to any Yuan-ti threats that he discovers, but that care must be taken due to the political ramifications of attacking her. Discretion is required even if it can seem somewhat underhanded for a paladin. While the party were separated, Lady Mai visited the Badger and Rabbit and spoke to Magnus. She explained that she had discovered the poisoner who was responsible for the recent illness in Westriver and emphasised the importance of swiftly tackling internal threats in these uncertain times. She came directly to the party in the hopes that they could deal with the matter quickly and quietly. Magnus assured her that they would look into it. The party later visited the accused - Roger Delenno. They discovered him to be a weapons seller and had a number of more exclusive weapons and information that could be pried out of him. He mentioned being able to source specialised scabbards that were effective at safely preserving daggers coated with poison, which Hawkin took great interest in and went out of his way to provide him with a mold of his dagger. He advised them to seek Garker at the Waterwatch docks who could provide poison for their needs. He also told the party that Lady Mai had recently made a few purchases of some basic, low-end weapons. Magnus encouraged Roger to find her at the Badger and Rabbit later if he wanted to get a drink with her. Garker seemed surprisingly upfront and was happy to provide them with a poison similar to that which recently afflicted Westriver, although it would take him more time and money than usual due to a shortage in the required supplies. He seemed very surprised at the suggestion of Roger using poison, being quite sure that he's purely a businessman and doesn't have it in him to use any poisons himself. Magnus left a deposit for the requested poison and went to meet Roger at the Badger and Rabbit. The party managed to get out of Roger that he was a weapon smuggler but he doesn't know why he's being framed. They eventually persuaded him to escape from Oilan and they tried to make it appear as though he had been killed. The following day, the party was summoned by Queen Valerie. She explained the dilemma they were in and asked the party for advise, and potentially their help. The party encouraged them to bide their time, researching into better ways of tackling the undead army, rather than taking any hasty actions. Although unwilling to really ally themselves with Queen Valerie, Magnus reassured them that they would be heading in that direction and may find a way to help.