Jak – please – tell – me – you – are – still – alive – down – there. The – city – is – being – overrun. Find – a – way – to – get – back – up – here – NOW. (explosion)
You awaken to the cool breeze of a cavern. You open your eyes – wait, they are open…wait, are they really? They are – it is so dark that you couldn’t tell at first. It takes you a moment to remember where you are. Your body aches as you attempt to move and regain kinaesthetic awareness.
There is a faint glow several yards away. It’s familiar…that is the stone that was powering the teleportation ritual. Oh gosh! – the mind flayers, the ruins, the battle – Evershade! Thoughts come rushing back to you after you awaken.
The group gathers in the ruins and scours it for treasure and clues.
D’nissa is nowhere to be found.
*Heal 22 Discerns from the dead bodies that you’ve been knocked out for 2-3 days!
2 Astral Diamonds (from the traps)
2,880 Residuum from the Mind Flayers’ ritual
Various Gnome Jewelry: 4 necklaces, 21 pure gold gears, 9 bracelets, 2 pairs of small bracers, 96 bullets, a letter opener, and 6 pounds of broken bits and shiny things.
The party regroups around the triangular gate on the floor.
The large crystal remains intact after lashing out at you and your group. It is a deep rich blue, with violet lightning bolts flickering inside of it. Somehow, you’ve got to do what the mind flayers were trying to do – hack into the teleportation gate in Evershade’s city hall. Otherwise, there’s no way you’ll make it back to the city.
Catherine and Ben take charge on the ritual casting. Jak tends to the blemishes and welts that form on their skin, evidence of how taxing the ritual’s magic is upon their bodies. Max is tired of the “mages” and their stupid bullshit and decides to scout out the area to make sure none of the other shitty monsters that live in the Underdark decide to mess with them. Afterwards, he takes a Total Don’tblowupmyballs Stance.
Remarkably, they harness the crystal’s energy successfully without injury. Not only does a portal to Evershade appear in front of them, but they should be able to link back to this very spot with Durk of Dude Street.
With a thunderous CRACK, the ritual is completed, and the inside of City Hall stands before you. Well, you think so, at least. It is dark on the other side. Catherine double checks her coordinates and confirms that this is the right place.
When you step through the portal, you feel a faint lurch before your feet make contact with the ground. Heavy boots on stone floor echo in the hollow chamber. Your light casts dancing shadows of the pillars along the left and right walls. Aside from the steps and breathing of your companions, the room is silent. You can her shouting and crashes outside, distorted and muffled from the thick walls of city hall.
“So the great do-gooders return. Judeth’s pets are well-trained…but perhaps a few days late.”
Any reactions from the party cause a Force Shackles spell to be cast. Fake some die rolls and give people Restrained (DM ends).
A thin figure steps out from the shadows at the far end of the great hall. “Our mighty city, once prosperous beyond measure, is falling down around us. Despite all of the hard work you put in, all of the errands Judeth had you run for him, our doom is at our doorstep. What a waste of time.”
The figure is draped in layers of white cloaks and shawls, a large silver-trimmed hood obscuring his face from you. “Was it worth it?? Was scavenging the alleys and hiking through the Underdark worth abandoning your duties? Teaching your classes? Seeing your families for the last time??”
He chuckles. “I imagine not. I half expected you to not even survive your foray into the deep…but then again, I know you to be a stubborn lot. Despite my efforts to convince you of forbidden knowledge’s evil hold, to frame you into some preposterous summoning crime, to threaten your mentor and have him captured and tortured, to incarcerate you for your petty thievery, to sabotage your excursion by destroying every damn underdark map in the city, and to bury you alive in a collapsing building, you still manage to stay on course. But not this time.”
“Damn you, Catherine Selden. Know that there is nothing left for you. The illithids have taken over, and the Church of Ioun is overrun. There is not much left on this plane for me to live for…except to see you BURN.”
Daran pulls out a strange, pulsing organ and a wretched bone knife. One swift motion – he raises his hand and pierces the bizarre flesh with the implement. Fluid splashes on his otherwise immaculate clothing. He holds out his hand, knife skewering the organ, and he begins to grow, violently, in random places. He laughs as his monstrous form consumes his humanity.