Signs and Portents

Session: 1/24/98


Kathy - Vochma

Micah - Cardhu

Mark - Corlis

Ben - Drew

Liz - Quera

Joe - Moth

Josh - Thunder

The Chaos Altar - Mother of Gods - The Old One - Return to Kernan

Waterday, Fertility Week, Fire Season

Well, there we were, stuck on the shadow plain. Corlis severely used and abused from his battle with the portal guardian, the party surrounded by githyanki of questionable intent, and a mysterious portal opening in front of us…

Meanwhile back in the normal world, Moth, Slarth, the Duke, Herernavi, Walwyn, and some men at arms were planning the assault on the altar. They finally came up with a plan they thought reasonable. Herernavi would summon elementals of fire and water to burn out the evil infestation, while the Duke, Slarth, and Moth attacked the slimes and any other creatures of Chaos that showed themselves in the battle. They set out to rid the world of this one evil. On the way out of the village, Golga offered a packet of magical powder to the Duke, who accepted it and sprinkled it upon the party (was that a quiver in his hand?)

In the shadows plane, Corlis and Drew applied several healing spells and potions to Corlis, while the impatient githyanki urged the party to enter the portal. By this time there were thin tendrils of mist curling from the opening. Strange dark shapes appeared within, and a foul smell crept forth. Healthy again, the party stepped through the opening.

Before them, hedged in by magical wards, a huge hideous being awaited - an Old One, something that could put Cthulhu to shame. Luckily it was powerless within its confinement. To one side lay the corpse of an angel, to the other the corpse of a human. The party circled toward the human, eyeing the sword it held within its grasp. As we approached, a voice spoke from the far side of the circle, and a shape moved in the darkness. "Do not disturb the bones of my master," it cried. The party watched as a human figure stepped out of the shadows, shaking off the remnants of some sort of spell.

The man introduced himself as Thunder, and told us that he and his master came here to recover an artifact from the trapped Old One. Unfortunately, they could not recover the item, and ended up being trapped in this place, the master giving his life to keep the Old One (which was offering us the world to free it about now) in bond. We offered to help Thunder return to the mundane world in exchange for his help in defeating the githyanki, who by now were making hostile noises outside the portal.

Back in reality, the Altar killers were engaged in a fierce battle with the slime creatures that protected the altar. Slarth was cutting a path to the Altar, Moth was protecting Herernavi, who guided the elementals with deadly effect. Eventually, the black and evil woods were burned out, and Walwyn could approach the altar to destroy its evil influence forever. He incanted a mighty spell of blessing, and the Altar crumbled to the ground - destroyed forever! The party regrouped and headed back to town after having healing spells applied to remove some patches of the evil slime that had touched some of the group.

As the group rested and healed, Moth heard some elven music from the nearby woods. He went to investigate, and discovered a band of elves, apparently on the move to this area. They claimed they had heard of the destruction of Moth's village, and wanted to move to the area. Moth greeted them, and introduced their apparent leader, Frella, to the Duke.

On the shadow plane, the party made short work of the githyanki. Apparently their bark was worse than their bite. The last of the githyanki surrendered themselves, and the group began to question them. As we questioned the first prisoner, a strange keening noise sounded from nearby, and suddenly the other prisoner's head exploded! Fearing attack (scanners or worse!) we searched for the source of the noise. From the twilight, a group of huge humanoids in leaden armor came forth. They quickly slay the remaining githyanki despite the party's (half-hearted) protests. They then perform a strange ritual with the last of the githyanki, summoning a strange creature which steps to the still open portal and seals it with a leaden sheet of some kind. The creatures (who know the party somehow) tell us we should accompany them to "The Mother". Having no better course to follow, we agree.

Back in the real world, Moth, Lady Sernelia, Walwyn and the Duke discuss how to return the party from the shadow plane. Walwyn offers to take Moth there, but the Duke orders both Moth and Walwyn not to attempt a rescue, saying the risk was too great. The other three are unhappy with the choice, and later, they decide to disobey. Sernelia and Walwyn create a magical device that will locate the party once Moth and Walwyn reach the shadow plane, then Walwyn transports them to the shadow plane. Sernelia remains behind to cover their absence. Nothing like a little high treason to brighten one's day.

Once Moth and Walwyn reach the shadow realm, they set off in pursuit of the party. Their magical compass is pointing strongly, so they feel sure they will find us. Unfortunately, along the way they encounter a dragon-newt (or so Moth claims - everyone knows there's no such thing as dragon-newts). This creature seemed to have a grudge against Walwyn, and ended up slaying the poor cleric! Moth was trapped on the shadow plane as was the rest of the party. Moth elected to press on and find the rest of the party, leaving Walwyn's shattered and crushed remains behind.

Meanwhile the rest of the group has reached their destination, a fungi and insect filled vale in the shadowy realm. We reached a village of mud huts, and walked towards the center where a large spider-shaped temple dominated the square. We entered a space filled with un-light that seemed to go on forever. We walked a bit further, and came to a strange spider creature in a tattered red robe. It identified itself as the Mother of Gods, and questioned the party. We told her that we wished to leave the plane of shadow and return to our world. She agreed to aid us if we could pass her test. Having no real option, we agreed. She also told us that Moth was searching for us on the shadow plane, and that she would transport him to us when he came close.

The Mother sent us to Ulission, a desolate village, where we must solve the mystery of the place. From some writings we were given we determined that we must recover a number of jewels, created with eldritch magic, and replace them in their proper locations in the door of a tower and the crown of a queen. We searched through the ruins, and discovered several of the strange gems in various locations. Along the way we encountered a number of skeletons, which we defeat without great effort. Shortly thereafter we encountered a group of wraiths, which Drew defeated with a blast of fire from his wand. Unfortunately, he stood a bit too close and roasted himself as well.

About this time Moth caught up with us, and we rested and healed up for a short while. After our brief pause, we continued on our way, encountering all manner of traps and creatures along the way. The party was nearly done in by a group of umber hulks, which Vochma scared off with an effective illusion. A blue dragon made a brief appearance, and frightened off everyone save Moth with it's horrible aura. Luckily Moth used one of his potions of fire breath and scared the beast off (obviously a feeble example of the species).

Clayday, Fertility Week, Fire Season

Finally, we recovered enough of the gems to accomplish our goal, and were returned to the Mother of Gods. She healed all our wounds, and opened a portal to the normal world. We stepped through, and found ourselves near Veldman's Needles. The Mother of Gods last words were "Seek out Kragspider in Skyfall Lake". We left behind the remains of Walwyn, having no choice in the matter.

When we returned to Kernan, we discovered Lady Sernelia and Walwyn(!!) standing on the edge of town. We escorted them back to the village, and Lady Sernelia took her leave. We noted that Walwyn is not completely himself, and grew concerned when he started acting very strangely. We thought that his recent ordeal must have unsettled him, and put him to bed before we took our own well deserved rest.

Windsday, Fertility Week, Fire Season

We were awakened this day by the Duke's page pounding on the inn door. Magnild has asked us to come to the keep at once. We went and filled him in on what had happened. He was glad we were back, and told Moth he is glad that he didn't disobey the Duke and try and go to get us. We were less than pleased to hide the truth from Magnild, but felt the matter was best taken up with the Duke directly.

Session summary:

The party has (not including items distributed):

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