Edluar’s eyes flashed in rage as Fritz’s ice shard lanced through his flank. With a flurry of arcane incantations, a fog cloud descended upon the party. As the party scrambled to figure out what had just happened, through the temple echoed an eerie chant, “Kubli-ka, Dagon,” drawing ever closer. From the lower level, a mass of kuo-toa surged up from below.
As Akuma snapped his fingers, dispelling Edluar’s fog, the rest of the party surged forward. While the majority of the party swung around to protect the soft underbelly of the party, Damhsa danced forward to take on half of the kuo-toa forces alone. Luckily, Merek was flying nearby, still clothed in kuo-toa skin armor, much to their enemies’ chagrin.
No sooner had the battle lines began to settle when a pair of crustacean abominations rose up from the pools within the temple. Still, the party held firm, as Edluar moved off to the corner of the temple, buffing himself and waiting for the moment to strike. Unimpressed by Dagon’s toadies, the party held firm, despite Akuma unleashing perhaps the world’s most pathetic fireball.
They held until, from the back of the temple, Nhar`qual appeared. Almost gliding over the stones of the temple, he moved towards the pearl, unleashing arcane fury within the party, leaving several of their number incapacitated. This was the moment Edluar had been waiting for, springing upon the party and unleashing a series of spells to cripple those he could. Damhsa, finishing the last of her kuo-toa, charged up the dais to face the elven wizard.
Needless to say, the elf did not take kindly to this. With a flick of his wrist, he reduced Damhsa’s intelligence to that of a lizard – a very angry lizard. With a primal fury, she assaulted Nhar’qual, while the rest of the party mopped up the kuo-toa and aberrant crustaceans. Tired of his shenanigans, the party began taking pot shots at Edluar while moving towards the wizard.
Edluar, however, had his sights on Merek. Holding Teleost aloft, he hacked wildly at Merek, who was backpedaling around Elyas, who had joined the battle in dragon form. However, the battle was going about as badly for Nhar`qual as it was for Merek, who, just before Edluar was about to kill him, called the beguiler to his side.
Luckily, the gesture was for not, as Kiwi surged up the steps, and buried her great sword into the elf. Staggering back towards the pearl, he called out to Dagon for mercy as the inky black waters enveloped him. With this, the pearl plopped unceremoniously into the water below. Akuma stuck his hand in after it, but soon found himself screaming in agony as the vile acidic waters burned his flesh. Thinking his draconic immunity would protect him, Elyas volunteered to dive in after it.
A minute later, he emerged from the hole, jealously stroking his orb as he glowered at the party. Hardly eager to fight a dragon, the party left Elyas with the pearl and set about looting Nhar’qual’s horde. Their new-found gains secured, the party then turned their attention to finding a way out of the temple. First they investigated the lower floors, but only found an antechamber which seemed to turn into ocean halfway through.
As they stared into the inky depths, they saw a great grotesque tentacled form float towards a humaniod form floating in the water. They watched as the forbidding mass engulfed the figure before settling into dormancy once more. Confident this was not their way out, the party returned to the upper floor, only to notice the sound of water rushing into the outer hallways from the sewers above.
Slamming the doors shut for a chance to think, the party realized there was no other way out, and decided to open the doors once more. As the flood waters rushed in, the party struggled to stay together, eventually making headway out of the temple and up into the sewers above.
Not wanting to spend anymore time in the rank air of the sewers, they made a bee-line for Harcule’s manor, only to find it now abandoned, seemingly having been so for decades. However, Akuma had left his paramour a note in his room, bidding Harcule farewell. To his surprise, it had not aged as the rest of the building had.
Deciding they needed the rest, the party settled in for the night. As Merek finished his watch, he crept into Elyas’s room, and snatched the pearl from him, not wanting it to be in the hands of a mad druid who could shift into a dragon. Staring wide eyed as Elyas shaped himself into a bear, Merek quickly dimension doored from the room, leaving an unbearably distraught druid alone in his room. Gathering up the rest of the party, it was decided that Allyndor would carry the orb while Merek returned to Acanthus to resurrect his child (again).
However, it seemed that the cleric did not have Merek’s same resistance to the pearls effects. As soon as the warlock had disappeared, so too did Allyndor. And yet, with the party scattered across the world, worse things were yet to come.
Characters Present: Damhsa daughter of Scottia, Merek Falk, Elyas the Wolfhart, Akuma Bloodreamer, Kiwi Fuzzyfoot, Allyndor the Wanderer, Edluar the Seeker, Fritz, Saurok
XP Award (APL 8): 1125
Roleplaying XP Bonus: Elyas