Realm Runners

CHAPTER FOURTY FOUR: Reunion

Caikrek of T.H.E.C. (Thayan High Enclave Command)


Aces, Cliff, Ehd, Megilwath, Fanidea and Modreg inspect the green flashing ring on Valindra’s finger. Fanidea notices a fingerprint on top of the inlaid gem and Ehd takes the unconscious lich’s finger and swipes it across the green gem. They hear a raspy voice emanating from within the ring.

“Valindra! Where are you? The Shadovar are overrunning the elves of Neverwinter Wood! A legion of undead dwarves have come down from mount Hotenow. The time to attack is now! We need the remaining six! Valindra? Valindra!”

Thinking quickly, Fanidea puts on a deathly voice and pretends to be the lich.

Through conversation, the party discovers they are talking to a female named Caikrek at the Thayan High Enclave Command, overseen by the Red Wizard Szass Tam. Cliff and Ehd pretend to be “New friends and employers” of Valindra, and offer resignation on behalf of her to end her employment by the Thayan Empire. When Szass Tam asks for reason, they swipe off the Thayan linking ring.

They decide to wake Valindra to tell her the news that she’s been terminated by the Enclave and attempt to get further information out of her by threatening to cut out her tongue, chop off her arms and legs and stick her in a box for eternity. They learn about the Thayan Empire, their history of being slavers, and the Red Wizards being Undead and Necromantic. She is also forced to cough up her plans to ressurect the Neverwinter Nine to fight for the empire.

They knock her out once more, and Cliff throws her unconscious, undead corpse over his shoulder and they set off into the Tomb to locate the burials of the remaining Neverwinter Nine.

Seeking Rumors


Mentathenis, Sam and Nitzi continue to look around the Neverwinter graveyard groundskeeper’s shack for clues when Sam notices a cloaked figure approaching with a lantern from across the graveyard. As he draws closer, recognizing the eladrin, he pulls back his hood to reveal himself as Gendar. The drow explains that he was out looking for where Fanidea may have wandered off to.

Mentathenis asks Nitzi to assist him in Seeking Rumor and together they hear of Neverwinter’s canals getting warmer, the pending eruption of Mount Hotenow, a dracolich seen in skies, when the Broadbarn Fair may be back in town, the crumbling and flooded eyesore that is Castle Never, and the battle in Neverwinter Wood, fear of the Shadovar.

They decide to check out the canals, and Gendar accompanies them. When they get to the nearest waterway, they find the water to indeed be much warmer than is normal for Neverwinter this time of year. Mentathenis believes it to be geological and may mean that the mountain is truly nearing eruption. Gendar decides to retire back to his wagon, slightly perturbed of the idea of the volcano erupting. Mentathenis, Sam and Nitzi move on to investigate the ruined Castle Never.

Detours


Aces, Cliff, Ehd, Megilwath, Fanidea and Modreg finish locating the tombs of the remaining Neverwinter Nine and pulverize their bones under the advice of Cliff to ensure that they can never be ressurects by the evil armies of the dead. He also has Aces fill her bag of holding with the bone and dust chips of all six honored warriors. Then they make for the exit of the dark tomb, with Fanidea in the lead once more.

After many minutes of navigating the tombs many corridors and rooms, Fanidea leads them to a point that has been collapsed from above. Dirt, rock and stone block their way, and water pours along the walls. They trudge through a foot deep pool of water in order to assess their roadblock. Fanidea decides it far too dangerous to attempt to dig through and out. Megilwath investigates the pool of water and finds an exit flow through a couple shifted wall stones. Aces and Cliff think the wall may be weakened enough to push through to the other side.

After crashing through the wall and sliding down a wet muddy passage, they find themselves in the cisterns of Neverwinter. A crude carved map on the wall shows two rows of 20 large interconnected water pools separated by a 10 foot raised walkway leading to the exit.

Megilwath and Fanidea notice they are not alone in the dark of the pools. A lone humanoid figure stands down the walkway, staring blankly into the pool. His flesh is dripping with mucus and translucent, it twitches, and turns to look towards the heroes.

Castle Never


Mentathenis, Nitzi and Sam make their way across the flooded ruin of the old decrepit caste. The water is dark and motstly stagnant. The sound of bats and other vermin echo through it’s toppled walls and towers. Out of the corner of her eye Sam spots a ghostly spectre of a young woman shifting in and out of the darkness beyond a crumbled archway.

They jump across a broken pillar and head towards her. She doesn’t appear to pay any attention to the three. Mentathenis instructs Nitzi to make contact and the Eladrin hops down and tries to talk to the ghost. Immediately, the ghost turns and flies up to Nitzi silently begging of her. Nitzi steps back perplexed and looks to Mentathenis for advice. He and Sam approach and see the ghostly woman mouthing words. Sam is able to read her lips and they understand her to be Apple Alagondar, one of the royal daughters of Neverwinter. She tells them that a Lich has been digging in the area, and she fears that she may be searching for the Crown of Neverwinter. Then she beckons them deeper into the ruin.

The Host


Aces, Cliff, Ehd, Megilwath Fanidea and Modreg raise their weapons as the humanoid creature rushes down the walkway, gurgling. It lashes out at the mul, but Cliff slams it in the face, splitting it’s skull before it can get to her. It’s lifeless body falls into one of the pools to the side of the walkway.

Ehd looks the corpse over and figures it to be an Aboleth Servitor. Cliff draws the conclusion that there is most definately something called an Aboleth nearby. Ehd explains that the Servitors were once normal humans but were changed into some sort of mind controlled aquatic creature. As Ehd let’s the corpse back into the water, another servitor flies towards him. He falls back and Cliff kicks it back into the water. Aces draws her Maul and spins around as Fanidea and Megilwath slice up, and soul steal them each. Modreg steps back and hides.

A shadow moves under the water. A frenzy of tentacles, flippers, gills and yellow-green slime explodes around Aces, hitting everyone on the walkway. Aces slams the Aboleth in the face with her Maul and it shrieks. It lunges forward and stares into her eyes with it’s four fishy eyeballs. The Mul becomes dominated and turns on her friends. With Aces, the Aboleth is able to pose quite a threat to the heroes before she is finally able to shake off her domination.

The Aboleth is quick and crafty, darting from one pool to the next attacking and retreating. It flails and lashes and spits, hiding behind it’s many Servitors that it summons to it’s side.

The heroes take out the slippery minions as they come forward in defense of their master. The Aboleth drags the fight up and down the walkway and Cliff Aces and Ehd, give chase. Fanidea and Megilwath have no desire chase it around and they, with Modreg, watch from afar.

Everywhere the Aboleth tries to go, Cliff and Aces throw it around and kick it further down the walkway. Ehd supports them and tosses his hammer in for good measure. When the Aboleth is beaten to a more slimy pulp, it swims away quickly, but as fast as it can swim, Cliff can run. The shifter the fishy creature down the cisterns before finally diving into the water, and with a full body punch, sends the creature belly up.

The rest of the party catches up and sees that the cisterns in this part have been heavily sludgefied by the Aboleth. It looks like it was using the cities water supply as a slime coated lair. Ehd points out that there are more Servitors under the water, though it looks like they are brain dead with the Aboleth killed.

The heroes continue on down the walkway, and onto a rickety set of wooden stairs leading up and out of the cisterns back into the morning sun of Neverwinter. They emerge from a small shed in the north-west end of the city. As the heroes walk their way back to the Golden Griffon, the city is just beginning to wake up. Cliff breathes in the morning air, glad to be back in the light of Amanautor. He glances over at the ruins of Castle Never, and through the ruined structures, he catches a glimpse of three people standing deep within them, two of which look extremely familliar.

Reunion


Megilwath, Nitzi and Sam pour over the bones of three or more individual humanoid corpses, recently having been dug up and placed into careful organization. The ghost of Apple Alagondar faded away with the rising sun and left them trying to locate the Crown of Neverwinter in and around the grave.

They hear familliar voices and are surprised to look over and see Cliff, Ehd, Aces, Megilwath, Fanidea and Modreg bounding through the flooded ruins towards them. There are hugs and smiles, stories are exchanged, Nitzi is introduced to the others and though the whereabouts of Krushi and Ree’vr are still unknown, everyone is happy to finally be reunited.

Mentathenis explains what they are up to in the ruins, and Nitzi points out that Valindra’s corpse body over Cliff’s shoulder is kinda gross. Piecing things together, the group draws the conclusion that it was most likely Valindra who was digging through the ruins, and preparing the bodies of the royal family to be raised in undeath. Cliff promptly instructs everyone to pulverize the bones to dust for store in Aces’ Bag of Holding.
Mentathenis, not sensing the presence of any magic nearby, doesnt think the Crown of Neverwinter is in danger any longer.

The Interrogation and Sentencing of Valindra Shadowmantle


The heroes deliver Valindra to the Neverwinter Guard and are given their reward of 10,000 gold. They are formally asked by the head of the guard to conduct her interrogation. They also request the presence of the Mayor for her sentence.

Fearing Cliff’s threat of eternity in a box, Valindra admits to resurrection through undeath, the select bodies in Neverwinter’s Graveyard, the Tombs of Neverwinter, and in Castle Never including three of the honored Neverwinter Nine, and an attempt to ressurect members of the Royal Family. These crimes being done in the name of The Thayan Empire, by order of the Red Wizard, Ssazz Tam, in their effort to fight against the encroaching armies of Netherese, the Shadovar.

The Mayor of Neverwinter, an atrophied dwarf named Soman Galt arrives to advize and enact the sentencing. The group recommends against death for Valindra, and Cliff, given the Liches cooperation, decides against a dismembered eternity in a box. They tell the Mayor that chaining the Lich, alive, in their deepest darkest dungeon for the foreseeable future is enough punishment for her crimes against Neverwinter.

After being thanked once more by Mayor Galt, Balindra is hauled off to her new cell and the party heads back to the Golden Griffon. As Valindra is hauled off to her cell. Cliff, feeling off about his decision to pulverize the bones of the dead, heads for the Temple of Amanautor in Neverwinter.

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Trysta

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