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Warwick/Cassian Summary: Rage against Ignorance: The Destruction of ... oh I forgot.

Cassian, Cleric 9
Sirse, Cassian's owl friend/familiar/favorite bird
Mel, Fighter 5
Lily, Cleric/Fighter 2/1
Willis, Wizard 3

Warwick, Ranger 8.95
Snort & Snarl, 6-HD cave bear friends of Warwick
Tristan, Druid 5
Tristan's hawk
Lanoi, Cleric 4

Cassian and Warwick were bored. Sure, they'd recently saved a
Phaulkonian holy site, recovered a Dragon's hoard, and destroyed a
clone of Obmi, but what were they going to do next weekend? Warwick
spent thousands on Shabrundian sage research, looking for cool things
to do in the mountains north of Cromwell. Out of the dozen or so
leads, they selected an innocuous adventure - a rumored lost city
underneath the valley of the Noblink, located in the shadow of the
Horn of Iggwilv. "Look over your shoulder" The Phaulkonian duo
hoped to find an underground adventuring locale, allowing them to
spend a productive winter in the mountains. Since very few adventure
areas in Cromwell remained unplundered (by the current King, Stone
Soules, etc.) Warwick was not optimistic about the prospects for

Early research indicated that there was only one way into the lost
city, and that the noblink gave yearly tribute to some monster at the
entrance. When Cassian and Warwick arrived, the not-so-unhelpful
noblink confirmed those facts. Using the direct approach, the
Phaulkonian heroes announced their intention to explore the city.
The noblink agreed to let them have rights to all treasure, minus
10%, if they would destroy the demon who demanded tribute.
Additionally, they would spare the hostage dwarves who had been
slated as this year's current sacrifice. They were scheduled for
sacrifice at midnight on December 20, the longest night of the year.
The sacrifice would occur in two weeks.

The noblink led them to a set of ruined structures in the middle of
the valley. Warwick recognized the architecture of the buildings -
they were similar to a temple that he had visited in Botswile, where
he received a very gracious Regeneration from the Korians. The
entrance to the lost city, also the home of a hideous
tribute-demanding demon, appeared to be a Korian temple complex with
surrounding guard towers. Where stained glass windows should have
been seen in the temple - there were jet black panes. As this seemed
an unlikely place to find Korians, a Divination was cast upon the
area. The result yielded no information whatsoever, except that "Kor
has some interest in this place." A Commune returned mostly
"unanswerable" responses. The one interesting question was "Should
we Implore a deva to help us? YES." Something very bad lurked
within, and Warwick had a nagging sense of déjà vu.

With little other preparation, an assault was planned. OK, not
really planned; they just got ready to fight. The next day, battle
spells were memorized, and an Implore was cast at high noon.
Unfortunately, it failed. On the next day, the heroes used a very
expensive spell called Zane's Luck to improve their chances, and they
were able to successfully Implore a Phaulkonian angel (the same one
that Alegra has called in the past). After a very quick conference
with the party, the deva opened the doors to the temple.

Warwick was wearing his Korian continual light gem (which repels most
undead) as he moved into the long corridor beyond the doors. As he
stepped into the building, doors at the end of the hallway burst
open, and a wave of blackness rolled out. The deva fired flaming
arrows. Unable to see a real target, Warwick began firing his new
Korian bow, the Memory of the Fallen. Cassian cast Dispel Evil,
hoping to send the demon home. The henchmen quailed. It was unclear
whether any of the initial arrows injured the creature, but the deva
quickly communicated that she was unable to harm it. The heroes were
outmatched, and the best hope would be a Dispelling of the Evil.
Warwick was quickly stricken by a Curse, and he began crawling on the
floor, remembering some forgotten name (Thorizdun?). Tristan tried to
drag Warwick out, and everyone made a general retreat.

Although the details of the initial battle are hazy, the Beast
created a sphere of whirling blades around itself and advanced
unmercifully toward the party. Tristan was cut down, and Warwick lay
bleeding on the ground. The deva was finally able to free Warwick's
mind, and the whole party escaped into the courtyard outside the
temple. The deva explained that while she could not be permanently
slain on the prime plane, mere mortals would have their souls
destroyed by the monster. She insisted that everyone leave,
admitting that even she could not harm the Beast. Stubbornly,
Warwick continued firing on the advancing monster. As it moved
toward the circle of Korian light, Warwick could discern its
appearance - it was a huge armored warrior with a grey two-handed
sword. It had apparently been wounded by Warwick's first arrow, but
no other shots had landed since. Warwick dropped back as flying
shards sliced through him.

After less than a minute of combat, the Beast abruptly Dispelled the
out-matched deva back to heaven. The party fell back into the
courtyard, with the Beast in pursuit. As it enveloped Warwick in the
sphere of blades, the Korian gem shattered. Worse, his bow was no
longer strong enough to hurt the Beast, now that they were beyond
Korian Holy ground. The only hope was that Cassian would cast the
Beast from the prime plane. She successfully touched the creature,
but realized that it no longer had a home plane to return to! It
receded into its lair, with the doors slamming shut behind it.
Knowing that her Dispel Evil would soon fade, Cassian recognized that
everyone in the valley was probably doomed. Uh oh.

Still reeling from the encounter, the heroes were approached by the
noblink high shaman, who said that he could Implore an avatar for
them, if they were willing to give him riches to sacrifice. (He
explained that the traditional blood sacrifice would probably not be
agreeable to Phaulkonians...) After a quick discussion, a small
fortune in gems was given to the shaman. Cassian used a magical
Pearl to regain an Implore spell. Within minutes, the forces of both
Good and Evil were invoked to battle the Dark Beast.

The first arrival was a giant hobgoblin in battle-gear, who nearly
mistook Warwick and Cassian as the intended targets. Next appeared a
different Phaulkonian angel, one whom was reputed to be more
warrior-like. Of course, the hobgoblin avatar and the angel were not
pleased to meet one another, and the deva took an instant to Commune
with Phaulkon to understand His will. She received permission to
proceed and then healed the party completely. The unlikely allies
advanced back into the lost temple.

The team reached the back doors of the hallway before the Beast
reappeared. Without the Korian light gem, the entire area was
completely darkened, and the only light that was seen was from the
Phaulkonian deva's flaming strikes upon the Beast. Warwick used the
bursts of light to illuminate his own shots, while the hobgoblin
demon ignored the darkness and viciously attacked. The deva's bow
shots actually knocked the Beast backward! It appeared that the
party might really destroy the creature.

Unfortunately, the advantage slipped away as the Beast Dispelled
first the angel and then the hobgoblin demon. What kind of Evil
power did they face? As Cassian and Warwick backed down the
hallway, it was clear that they would soon be engulfed by unending
blackness. Alegra once said, "[sic] Divine intervention should be
invoked only when your eternal soul risks destruction." This
situation certainly seemed to qualify, so Cassian prayed that
Phaulkon himself might directly assist her.

[OOC: A high priestess is battling an unstoppable being of
unspeakable Evil. She has lost 2 devas in 10 minutes, and she is
functioning under the auspices of Zane's Luck. A call for Divine
Intervention rolls a 03! Unbelievable!]

From out in the courtyard, the henchmen yelled that the skies were
beginning to clear. Swoosh! A being more beautiful and majestic
than any deva appeared in the temple hallway; Phaulkon had sent a
mighty servant. Heavenly light washed into the area, and the battle
began anew. The Dark Beast unleashed its true strength as it spoke
an Unholy Word of power, and the party was knocked reeling. Without
warning, the doors behind the Beast opened, and a man in black robes
walked into the battle scene. A shimmer passed throughout the area,
and within an instant the man had hit the greater angel several times
with a staff. The angel withstood the attack, and spoke a Holy Word
rebuttal. Apparently, this servant of Phaulkon was more evenly
matched against the Darkness. Both of the evil ones were stunned,
and the angel Telekinetically ripped the sword from the beast and
hurled it outside the temple, where it began to dissolve in the
light. Then, she summoned an incredible wind, sealing her enemies
behind a wall of air.

The angel announced "My work here is done." Confused but uninjured,
the party certainly wasn't ready for her to leave! The angel
explained that she was there only to delay the Evil, not to destroy
it, and that appropriate resources would arrive shortly. Then she
vanished, the darkness returned, and Warwick and Cassian wondered
what could possibly happen next.

Just as suddenly, the now-familiar glow of Phaulkonian light
appeared, and a giant stepped in through the temple doorway. He
introduced himself as Grien, the legendary prophet of Phaulkon, and
he explained that the party must destroy the lich (!) while he
battled the Dark One. He released the angel's Wall of Force, and
phase three of the battle began. Cassian cast Dispel Magic upon the
lich and Beast, and Warwick began firing Holy arrows into the undead
horror. Grien began firing his Disrupting Bow, as he attempted to
obliterate the Extra-Planar Evil. Several minutes of combat
followed, including multiple Fireballs from Cassian's belt of fire.
Grien was subjected to a continuous onslaught of death magic, which
he resisted.

Fortunately the lich lacked additional Time Stop spells, and it was
unable to inflict killing damage upon the Phaulkonians (a volley of
10 magic missiles, etc.). Finally it crumpled, and everyone
concentrated their fire on the Beast. Grien's bow continued hitting
home, and eventually a Disruption occurred. The Beast evaporated,
and the heroes were left awestruck as they staggered out into the
streaming sunlight.

Grien explained that the temple had originally been a staging ground
for heroes battling the Dark Servant of Tram. While the main army
successfully trapped the Dark Servant in a cyst prison, a lesser Dark
One had crept into the complex and slain the entire base. Of course,
all records and memories of the events were lost to mortal
historians... Grien insisted that Cassian and Warwick contact the
Korians to deconsecrate the temple and recover any lost relics. He
predicted danger still lurked below, but nothing comparable to the
evils that had just been destroyed. Finally, he noted that Warwick
was particularly susceptible to powers of the Dark Being because of
previous bad choices made in the Lost Temple of the Dark Servant [a
Stone Soules adventure]. Alas, since Divine Heroes always have lots
of work to do, Grien left within minutes of his arrival, and the
clouds gradually returned to the skies.


The party rested and regained spells, recovered the dwarven captives
from the noblink, and then moved into the temple complex for
exploration. The main level of the temple was a beautiful dome, with
a circle of statues ringing a massive statue of Kor. The Dark Beast
had laired there for centuries, and the sun had been toppled from
Kor's shoulders. The encircling statues were images of Neutral and
Good deities, including Nevron, Phaulkon, and Moradin. Many
religions had apparently joined forces to battle Tram's Dark Servant.
Adjacent to the domed room were a library of books whose words had
all been erased, and the skeletons of guardians who had long since

Below the ground was a series of crypts and the Korian treasury. The
crypt complex had been ravaged by an earthquake, according to one of
the dwarves. Indeed, entire sections of the floor had collapsed,
with mists and steam rising up from a massive cavern below. One
unusual room had a steel winch and basket in the middle of it, and it
clearly wasn't part of the Korian motif. The party learned how to
operate the machine, and Cassian and Warwick were lowered down 700
feet into the cavern below.

The cave was enormous. Inside were the jumbled remains of a small
town, complete with upside-down buildings as well as relatively
unscathed city blocks. Warwick remembered that the lich had walked
into the temple above, so he searched for tracks around the basket.
Sure enough, a set of footprints/scratches led off into the city.
They slowly followed the signs into a city courtyard, where they
encountered a sleeping Behir! They breathed a sigh of relief as they
realized the blue monster had perished decades ago.

The trail continued into a building, and the party foolhardily passed
a set of magical guardian statues. For whatever reason, the
guardians remained inactive. Eventually, the tracks led to a set of
huge brass doors labeled "the sanctum of Flinga". Not surprisingly,
the doors wouldn't budge, and multiple Dispel Magics failed to open
it. Out of spell power, Cassian slept as the party stood watch.

Soon, the party was startled to hear a massive explosion behind the
brass doors. With renewed urgency, the party used a Dispel Magic
from a scroll. The doors opened and smoked billowed into the area.
Cassian's henchman Willis cast Zane's Big Gulp, which allowed the
party to hold its breath and enter the choking cloud. The scene was
incredibly disappointing. The entire laboratory/library had been
consumed in flame, and the smoking corpses of tiny mummies (Flinga's
helpers?) lay strewn on the floor. They had carefully destroyed
every spell book, chemical, and text that the lich possessed! The
lich had been destroyed, but his most priceless treasures had been
lost to us.

Discouraged, the party decided to explore the remainder of Flinga's
lair before anything else was lost. They found hoards of spare
alchemical gear, intricate sculpting tools, and a room full of "junk"
that the lich had discarded as unusable. [The junk included magic
items such as daggers, arrows, a shield, javelins, gauntlets, a huge
book, a Phaulkonian Cloak of the Storm, potion, dozens of gems, and a
2nd - level spell book!]


The party returned to the surface and began the methodical process of
gathering items from the lich's corpse, negotiating with the noblink
shaman, and requesting help from the Korian authorities (via
Cassian's owl, Sirse). The shaman and the party agreed to summon a
local stone giant archaeologist to identify magic items, arbitrate
the treasure division, and disassemble the temple's stained glass,
etc. The shaman was eager to remove the treasure from the city,
because it would be a beacon to anyone casting Divinations. While
the party waited for the stone giant to arrive, they continued to
scour the city below, but found little of value.

Apparently, a hive of dungeon mites had been captured by the lich and
mummified. The mummy-mites had completely scavenged the entire city.
All that remained in the city were dozens of ghosts, including an
entire tavern of spirits preparing a victory celebration for the
returning army. One by one, they were all put to rest or exorcised.
One particularly interesting specter was a sage, Ossassmas. He
explained in more detail the story of betrayal that allowed Tram's
lesser Servant to enter the town and wipe out the army's support
teams. Realizing that these stories had been completely lost in
history, Warwick and Cassian faithfully recorded every detail that
they heard.

The stone giant arrived in 11 days, accompanied by her sons. The
Korian treasury and relics were gathered, as well as Flinga's "junk".
Among the most interesting items were the lich's personal equipment
- including a robe, a staff, rings, bracers, and a glove. The
treasures were identified, and additional stone giant workers arrived
by early January. The total value of the gems, alchemical equipment,
and more "liquid" treasure was worth tens of thousands of gold
pieces. However, Warwick and Cassian could only imagine what the value
of a lich's spell books might have been (including Time Stop!)

Sirse returned with news that the Korians would arrive after the
spring thaw. The stone giants and newly-freed dwarves moved all of
the treasure to Shabrund, hoping to secure it before news of its
recovery escaped to Lludd or the surrounding giant kingdoms. Warwick
and Cassian spent the remainder of the winter exploring and mapping
the complex and the city below. In April, a party of four name-level
Korians arrived, and they promptly deconsecrated the temple complex.
They traveled with Warwick and Cassian to Shabrund, harassed
occasionally by humanoids who were quickly dispatched. By early May,
they reached the Gwaylar's Vale, paid the salvage tax due to
Shabrund, and contemplated the next opportunity for exploration,
death, and destruction (ED&D).



Many interested threads were connected in this adventure. The
history of the Dark Servant's imprisonment was revealed, Lludd's
missing clutchmate was discovered (dead), and evidence of cooperation
between Tram and the undead was found. Perhaps Horbani himself
allied with Tram's servants to oppose the Kraken?

All in all, the party would have been completely obliterated without
an exceptionally lucky prayer from Cassian. Matched with this
unimaginably huge risk, the treasure that was recovered was also
vast. Of the items recovered, a significant chunk went to the
dwarves, and 10% went to the noblink shaman (ugh). The party still
retained some cool stuff! Highlights include a Glove of Holding
(200-coin capacity), a Robe of the Mages (+2 saves, plus a bonus 1st,
2nd, & 3rd level spell), a matched set of +3 Throwing Daggers
(returning), and 50-coin weights of adamantite (which the dwarves
fashioned into arrow heads). Cassian also sacrificed the lich's Wand
of Wonder to Phaulkon, in thanks for his unending watchfulness.

Two other items were especially interesting to Warwick. The first
was a huge magical book that the stone giant sage/archeologist could
not identify. She surmised that it would allow someone to become
more talented in some way. It was sent to Zalk for identification,
and the party will receive a response in about 1 year. Perhaps it
holds the secret of longevity, or a prescription for beauty, or ?

The second treasure item is more surreal - the behir corpse.
Although the magic fluids that could be used for Longevity potions
were long gone, the carcass was completely intact. The dwarves
offered to buy the carcass for 7000 gp, since it could be fashioned
into armor (a la Razorback, owned by Alegra). Instead, Warwick
commissioned a team of dwarven armorers to construct a suit for him
for 10,000 gold. Unenchanted, behir armor is non-metallic AC2/AT4,
weighs 150 coins (same as leather), gives +2 on saves, and allows
movement at 12". With enchantment, the weight is halved and movement
increases to 15". The party plans to take the armor to the
Phaulkonian temple in Hochland, where Warwick will donate tons of
gems, gold, and magic to have it enchanted as strongly as possible by Mariah.
It's hard to imagine a better set of armor for a fast-moving ranger.

What's next?

The Phaulkonian heroes have sent a letter to the ranger Merriot (see
the Windsocks quest). Merriot is the owner of the mysterious Statues
of the Fates, which have the power to alter recent history and choose
the upcoming future. He has planned to disrupt the Fire Giant
kingdom - Warwick and Cassian want to join the plan! Note that
Shabrund (i.e., Mordrick), Cromwell, the Korians, and other
Phaulkonians are likely to be involved in what may potentially become
a full-scale land war.



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