Ches 19th, 1373 (Year of Rogue Dragons)
We set off to find the two Shadow Folk and Hobgoblin Cleric and run into them quickly enough. The Cleric has set up some kind of temple and raised undead skeletons to assist him. It was challenging, but we slew him and dispatched his undead minions. There was an interesting set of bronze doors which I decided to open and I found the Shadowfolk hunkered down in a midsize room with a small burrow leading outside. I called out to my companions and one of the little buggers darts into a shadow across the room and instantly appears behind me. I knew this from the dagger protruding from my back as everything went black…
I awoke on a bedroll in the same room; my companions had dispatched the Shadow Folk, stabilized me and let me rest until I came around. Next time I will be opening doors with Mage Hand from a safe distance, lesson learned.
The Shadow Folk where carrying a scrap of paper with some notes on it. It seems they found a trap door switch in an old hearth from the Surinak Hunting Lodge. I remember the Surinak’s were a noble family from the Duchy of Arcata and they were granted control of a town called Ostrav. The family was lynched by the common folk for their demon worshiping practices and sacrificing of same said folks. This switch is noted to lead to stairs going to Temple Slaghtergarde. Also scribed is “Mu-Tahn Laa destroyed, complex survives in pieces throughout Vaasa”. On the reverse side is a drawing of a collapsed arch with “Ruined! No salvageable Sigils”
Rested and ready to explore further we find the collapsed arch from the note. I believe it was a portal, possibly a portal that traversed planes of existence. Indeed the sigils have all been destroyed in the collapse and I quail to think of what would happen if they are trying to open a portal to a Dread Plane.
We start to hear a muffled Howling the further we penetrate this complex. We encounter more goblins and hobgoblins and dispatch them. We locate the last magic cask and some treasures. Amongst the crates of goods, hanging on the wall, were multiple tools of torture dripping fresh blood. I determine they are magical in nature and they constantly ooze blood on all the sharp bits. The nasty evil things are also sharp and pointy in really weird places; we decide to remove them as they may be feeding the entrapped Howler Demon.
The Howler is trapped in magical runes just as the Pentadrone 1298 described. What is really interesting is the pattern allows the Howler movement to different areas and the ability to interact with beings in those areas. A permanently trapped guardian that can move about in a limited capacity is intriguing containment system. I cannot study it long as the Howler’s howls start to eat at the edges of your sanity the longer you are directly exposed to it. We beat a hasty retreat from the area, with the howls ringing through our entire being.
Ches 20th – Ches 27th, 1373 (Year of Rogue Dragons)
It is decide it is time to go. We load up as many good as we can in the wagon and on our way out, we honor Pentadrone 1298’s request and collapse both tunnels. We agree that we never mention the casks and will not enter the city with them. No need to have our names on anyone’s “needs to be silenced” list. We arrive outside Heliogabalus and make camp off the road, under cover. Jinx and I will enter South End and make contact with Angus. Since we are party of the city, we shouldn’t make too much of a stir. We speak with Bluto and arrange the transfer of the casks outside at the camp. Once that is done we head into town. I take the more arcane and rare items to sell, while everyone else help offload the more common goods. We then make arrangements to deliver the eight creates of spice to Mistress Marktunsel and collect from Angus Silverblade.