- Nick C (Quoben Darktracker)
- Brian (Jik Chelos)
- Alex (Gab Denton)
Our heroes found themselves, once again, in the Golden City. Now, if you’ll recall, the party had recently fractured: Jik, Gab and Quoben were pursuing Soltari, who had seemingly decided to start a new life for himself. The three, wanted men in this city, hid in a hotel in the warehouse district and put out word to the city’s underworld that they were looking for a drow.
Eventually the group’s efforts paid off, or so it seemed. They were summoned to a warehouse by a man who identified himself only as “C” and had promised them “information”. Upon arriving at the warehouse, the crew was escorted to a back room where they met this mysterious man. C informed them that he had captured their man and was holding him in the building. Quoben, immediately recognizing that this was NOT Soltari, nonetheless decided to purchase the elf, with the intent to ransom him to his family.“Say what you will about the group’s moral compass; their ability to recognize the moneymaking potential of a situation was second to none. 400gp for a healthy adult drow? That’s a steal! … I mean, as long as the whole ‘owning a person’ thing doesn’t bother you, I guess.” - Mandrake Berwyn (former CEO of Diaramacorp TM)* (footnote)
- The views expressed herein are the personal opinions of individuals and do not necessarily reflect those of Diaramacorp, its parent company or subsidiaries.
As the conversation turned toward the continued search for Soltari, C was interrupted by the sound of a distant explosion.
Annoyed, C began to speak again, only to be interrupted a second time. More explosions!
The group returned once more to the topic at hand, but were quickly interrupted – again – this time by a rather mellow guard. He casually informed them that the building was being attacked by a monster of some kind, and that there was panic in the streets. Understandably alarmed, C asked the adventurers to assist in killing the thing, in exchange for a reward to be named later.
So our heroes made their way to the front of the building, ready for a fight. They immediately spotted their prey: a three-legged abomination. Two of the legs were covered in suckers, similar to but larger than an octopus’s; the other was covered with eyeballs. The creature appeared to have already ripped the arms off of one of the men (now dead) who had been first on the scene. The majority of the guards, understandably hesitant to enter the fray, were terrified into charging the monster after a rather frightening speech by Jik. With a fair bit of grappling and with the help of the newly motivated warehouse guards, the trio dispatched the octopus-monster without suffering any further casualties.“It’s interesting. If you go back and read the transcript of that speech – if you just focus on the words, the diction – it’s really pretty underwhelming. But isn’t that the point? Isn’t that the reason it has been studied by generations of military officers, politicians, and even actors? He literally frightened these men into a battle that just moments ago they had considered suicidal. It really is a testament to the raw power of the barbarian.” - Prof. Markheim Zilwager
The group moved outside the warehouse and took in the scene. It seemed that mellow guard #1 had been correct; the streets were indeed chaotic. The Wizard’s Tower was destroyed along with its occupants, though it wasn’t clear how or why. The adventurers, lacking any real direction, decided to investigate it. On the way the group stopped to speak with several guards and citizens – they learned that the city was being evacuated by the town guard but that monsters had lain siege to the city gates, preventing anyone from actually leaving. Additionally, the Statue District (or Shadow District, as it is more commonly called these days, partially in reference to these events) had been quarantined, and most of its residents were dead. It was also clear that pretty much nobody had any idea what these creatures were, where they came from, or why they were here.
As if the monsters weren’t enough, 16 black ships then appeared in the sky above the city. Quoben’s owl was able to see that the ships held warriors, several thousand of them, though they didn’t seem at all interested in joining in on the siege below. After a while, these ships turned south and departed.
Our adventurers, upon learning that the Statue District’s population had been wiped out, decided to investigate. Despite Gab’s ardent protests, the trio entered to take a quick look around the district, hoping that it held a clue as to the source of all this madness.
It was clear immediately that these people had not been attacked, not with weapons at least. They had no cuts, bruises, sores… no clues of any kind as to how they met their end. The group moved deeper into the district, eventually coming to the amphitheater in its center. There they found a second sphere of translucent energy. Inside was a small pocket from another plane of existence, though it was different this time. When they put a rop inside the barrier, they saw no noticable effect; though the kobold that Quoben dropped inside fared much worse. It at first appeared to suffocate, though after a short time it sat up unexpectedly.“Jik’s diary actually goes on for pages and pages about this event… aparently he’d developed a bit of a soft spot for the kobold ‘Abigail’, as he’d taken to calling it. Such a confusing man: burning with rage one moment, silenced by despair the next. Barbarians were known for being hot-tempered, but this was something different, something more like mood swings.” - Prof. Wendy Perrybottom (child psychologist)
As they were investigating, they noticed a few ghastly creatures moving in their direction. These ghosts, seemingly unphased by any kind of physical attack, proceeded to sap the strength of the party as they attacked. Quoben took the worst of it; after enduring multiple rounds of the ghosts’ attacks his legs could barely hold him up, though he did manage to wobble out the back door of the theater.“The thing about these shades was that you couldn’t tell what they were planning. They seemed to be wandering, aimless, until the moment they converged on Quoben and nearly dropped him in a surprisingly well coordinated attack. There’s actually a moment in the footage where the old elf looks like he is about to drop to his knees (a sure death sentence), but the tough bastard managed to stay on his unsteady legs somehow.” - Kilton Strongwind
The three fled and escaped the ghosts, eventually meeting up again outside the district, with Quoben on death’s door…