Protected Lands II

Fourth Dryday to Fourth Lowtide of Melaramoon

Off to Find the Parbane Gem

The new Legionnaires are joined at the ancient Minotaur city by Gottliest, a cleric of the Legion who was also sent on an escort mission to Flowrock.

After their contest in the arena with magma beasts, the party speak with the Minotaur shaman Kakaghu and his silent, nameless minotaur warrior friend. Kakaghu tells the PCs the story of Juliclast stealing the Rethbane Sheilds and heading north. He doesn’t know the whereabouts of the missing Parbane Gem, but he gives the PCs a small bag of dust ground from the horns of the Ancient Minotaur leader Mattan. If they enter the shrine of Mattan there in the abandoned minotaur city and burn the dust in the brazier before his tomb, his spirit may come and they can ask him their questions. He may also have a message for Kakaghu.

The PCs find the open plaza in the city and climb the stairs leading up into the audience chamber. Aelar thinks he hears clicking sounds behind them in the plaza, but they see nothing. They enter the audience chamber and notice that it doesn’t seem as run down and overgrown as the rest of the city. They find two sets of stairs down, but one has collapsed and is blocked, so they take the other and enter a stretch of hallway that has a couple small rooms. The first room has a dry well leading down about 50 feet. While investigating the room, mostly by throwing a sunrod around, they find an unconscious kenku and are attacked by two giant scorpions and a bunch of Kruthiks – the giant spiky beetles that seem to be able to sniff out elemental powers. Many of the dead bugs end up down in the well.

The party moves on and finds the large chamber that is the shrine and tomb of Mattem. There are a few Kruthiks there, which they lure back into the well room and kill. A couple of those bugs end up in the well too. They enter the shrine room and Asgeirr lights the brazier with his burning hands and throws the horn dust in. As the smoke coalesces into the shape of a large minotaur head, more kruthiks emerge from holes in the floor. After killing a half dozen more bugs, the party faces the image of Mattem in smoke, and he says “Speak.” They speak with his spirit and discover that the missing gem of the parable shield is far to the north, in the lair of Osfenix, the dragon that attacked Juliclast’s band of soldiers and then led the destruction of Minotaur civilization after Juliclast took refuge with them. They also learn that Osfenix died of wounds suffered at the hands of the Minotaurs.

The PCs set out for the north, hoping to find the abandoned Northern Fortress, now called Calimon’s Inferno. From there they plan to seek out the tall plateau under which Osfenix’s lair lies. Before they leave they stay the night in Flowrock and gather supplies, which they carry on a Tenser’s Floating Disk conjured by Gottliest.

On their way north, they see what looks like a huge humanoid carved from the dirt in the side of a tall hill, and then a fiery disk floating above the ground, guarded by magma beasts and melting the rock and earth below it into lava. after a few days travel across scorched badlands and festering marshes, they come to a more fertile, temperate area. While passing through a set of low hills into the next valley, they are warned to “get down!” by a voice in the brush. All but Asgeirr heed the warning and look around for threats. They see a group of humanoids shambling north through the valley below, but they look too far off to be a threat. Senirab gets close to the voice that warned them, and it turns out to be a Shadar-kai, a human servant of the Raven Queen. Then a huge blue dragon glides silently above them over the hills and down into the valley, and Asgeirr finally drops to the ground. The dragon makes slow, lazy passes above the walking creatures, who don’t seem to notice or care. The dragon glides off north and disappears suddenly in a flash. The Shadur-kai accepts the party’s thanks for the warning and asks for help destroying the undead and sending them to their rightful rest with the Raven Queen. The PCs agree and the fight goes well.

The Shadar-kai, whose name is Ratu Wyrmfate, travels with the PCs for a while, then heads off by himself. The PCs make it to the abandoned keep of Calimon’s Inferno and settle into the entry hall.

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