Serpent Skull

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What Has Gone Before
The Journal of Silas Velbur

28OCT11
Sypheros 27 Finally made it to Farshore today. This is the closest thing to civilization as I have seen since we left Q’barra. Many people were surprised at seeing me here, from what I have heard not many people have made the journey by land an unfortunately most of my friends hadn’t! It is hard to believe that I am all that’s left from the group that was hired to escort the ship here. Poor Dillane and Vance didn’t even make it too the Island! A comatose Khatari’ and curious Jelpair are back with the Drow, who promised not to eat them, while Greddark didn’t make it through the mountains. I will have to make some time to inform their families of what has happened to them. I guess I should be happy that Tonk is here with me still I remember finding him on that stranded ship floating out at sea on our way here.

As for my new companions, Xel’ Dren Joined me back at the drow, he seems to be a capable escort and very handy with his knives. Krylyk the half Orc is definitely useful I still am surprised every time he keeps his axe strapped to his back and continues to fire his bow but he is definitely dangerous with that bow. Cam seems to be a capable cleric even though he isn’t as useful as you would expect against undead. Well this is the group I am with now, I just hope they are around longer then the last group!

I informed the Lord Mayor, Manthaley Meravanchi of his sons surprisingly valiant death defending the young boy Tavey. Lavinia Vanderboren was actually with the mayor so was able to deliver the few people left from our original ship to her. She paid me my wages and set up a diner with myself and my companions to tell her about our journey through the jungle. From there we found an inn and I slept in a bed for the first time in what feels like months.

Sypheros 28 Today I bathed !!! How great that felt. I then headed to the House Kunderak and delivered Greddarks key to them. Boral d’Kunderak runs the house in Farshore with a Gnome named Snivin d’Sivis. Boral agreed to return all of the groups belongings to me that had been stored in the vault but it would take a day to do so. I checked out the local tavern where I ran into some old rivlals of sorts the Jade Ravens, Lavinia’s personal adventuring group of sorts Tollen and Liamae were the usual cocky selves, their arrogance gets under my skin!! They still look down at me and my companions. Zan however seemed ok he was actually interested in talking to me, probably only to get information from me about what I have seen on the island but it was nice talking to someone that I knew from before getting to the island. Kaskus was nowhere to be found but Zan said he was out and about in the jungle.

I went to the Library today and asked for several books about lost cities to include Saventh –Yhi but not only about that fabled city. Hoping not to draw too much attention to it. They told me it would take a day to gather all of those books, so I paid for a study room for a week at the library and and went on my way. To meet Nebucadnezzar a fellow wizard and member of the witch wardens.

Neb was at the burial grounds where he takes care of the colony’s dead. He was able to help me get a scroll of Fireball to write into my spellbook. I will not be so unable to deal with swarms again!!

That evening we met with Lavinia and told her about our Journey through the island and the temple that we had to rescue the other castaways from. She was extremely interested, she had heard some of it already it seems that Tavy has been talkative since our arrival here. Lavinia asked for another meeting the next night to talk about our future employment opportunities with her. After dinner we went back to the tavern where Xel’ Dren proceed to drink the barkeep under the table and the rest of the group just seemed to enjoy the evening, except Tonk that is he seems bored whenever we go to the tavern. I noticed Lirith, one of the other castaways talking to an elf. I brought everyone I knew in the establishment and anyone that they were with a drink before I called it an evening.

When the group left the tavern and headed back to the Inn we were met by Lirith and her friend, Shivayne. They told us that they had an offer for us if we were willing to hear them out, of course we were so we went back to the inn and listened to what they had to say. They informed us that they were from the House Thuranni (one of the elven houses, known as entertainers but it is actually a house of espionage). They offered 1000 gp for each of us and 500gp in difficult to acquire (and possibly illegal) items if we were to be advanced scouts for an expedition to find Saventh-Yhi. They also told us to expect other to make similar offers and that if we worked with them they might be able to slow other groups down. (which only seems logical that if we don’t work for them they will try and slow us down!). they are looking for 1 specific item that is said to be their houses first members original weapon.

Aryth 1 Started today by heading to the bank however before I could get there the group heard screams coming from the docks. We ran to see what was happening only to discover 3 large blue Euryptereds attacking the docks. We were able to kill them fairly easily (surprisingly to myself no one else joined in to the combat leaving us to defend the colony). Tonk decided at this time to try and take donations from the people for our services stealing a gnomes hat and holding it out. I returned their hat and apologized. I made it to the bank where Boral d’Kunderak informed me that my companion Greddark failed to charge the group the 10% fee for using the vault and because of that he would have to take that fee out of everything that we had stored in it. You would figure he might waive the fee since without me delivering the key he wouldn’t be able to use the vault but so be it. I also asked Boral if they would be willing to buy our ruby’s that we had found at the temple he said they would and gave me 5 letters each worth 1200gp’s which I gave to each member of the party.

After I left the bank I spent the rest of the day at the library studying some of the books about Saventh-Yhi. Until just before our dinner meeting with Lavina. The group went to Lavinia’s house for dinner, where we met Dargon Etters, they made us an offer similar to what the House Thuranni offered 1000 gp each and a total of 1000gp worth of scrolls and potions. They are representing the following houses: Deneith (basically a mercenary and soldiers house), Cannith (the house of makers), Ghallanda (house of hospitality), Jorasco (house of Halfling house of healing), Sivis (House of scribing), and Vadalis ( house of animal husbandry). As with the group from the previous night we asked to have a couple of days to think about their offer. Through our conversation however they did say that they were representing all of the houses present in Farshore. So they obviously are not aware that house Thuranni has any presence here at this time. They did tell us that if we found items that they wanted they would “negotiate” with us for them to have

After our meeting we went back to the inn where there was a card from Shimmeringglitteringbutterflywings Floral asking us to meet here because she had a proposal for us.

Aryth 2 the next morning we all went to the library to meet with Shimmering…………. (SGBW) a Gnome representing Morgrave University. She also offered to fund us as an advance scouting group to Savnth-Yhi. The university was willing to give us 1500gp each as well magical compasses and some commissions and covering our expedition in the Korranberg Chronicle. After this meeting we asked (SGBW) who else might be contacting us to do this expedition. She told us that the Lord Mayor probably would be as well as the contingent from Lhazaar Principalities. We decided as a group that we wouldn’t be interested in working for the Lhazaar group since they were more like pirates than anything else. From there we went right to the Lord Mayors to let him make his offer. He was surprised to see us but did offer us 1600gp each along with extra guards to travel with us and the possibility of land and titles when we returned.

At this time we sat down as a group to talk about what we thought would be our best bet. We decided that our best bet would be to try and work for two of the groups the house Thuranni and Morgrave University if they would allow it. My reasoning was two fold. First I didn’t like the part about negotiating for items that we had found and second the Jade Ravens have been sitting in their safe little seats with Lavinia long enough for my liking why should I agree to put my life and that of my companions in danger while they sit back with Lavinia and take it easy!

That evening as we spent yet another evening at the tavern, I noticed Lirith with a new female companion. Krylyk notice the new companion as well and he seemed interested in her. I let Lirith know that I need to talk to her. When the group got back to the inn her and Shivayne were waiting for me in my room, I noticed that the clothes that Shivayne was wearing were the same clothes that Lirith’s female friend from the tavern was wearing!! Shivayne could very well be a changeling, like Dillane! We discussed the fact that we would like to work for them as well as Morgrave university and our counter offer was that they did not need to pay us the 1000gp each but that they would still provide the 1000gp total of hard to find and illegal items for us as well as a possible escape route if needed as long as Morgrave University would agree that they could claim their of the historical item dealing with the House! Of course that would mean that they would also not hamper our progress at all and try to slow down any other groups.

Aryth 3 Met with SGBW earlier today at the library and explained the fact that we would like to work for her and Morgrave University and that we had already made arrangements with the House Thuranni that they would not interfere as long as we allowed them to take the artifact that they were looking for! She agreed and is paying each member of the group 1500 gp as well as helping with supplying us with some scrolls and potions, the magical compasses for each of us and an individual to chronicle our expedition! SGBW told us that the main expedition was going to be leaving on 21 Aryth and would like us to leave at least 10 days before the main expedition. I am going to try and not let Lavinia know about our decision for as long as I can.

I spent the rest of the day studying about Saventh-Yhi and trying to figure out its whereabouts. After another long day of studying this is what I have figured out so far:
In ages past, the Olman hero, Savith, led an army to defeat the serpent empire once and for all. After leading her troops on a fierce campaign through the Screaming Jungle in search of the serpentfolk city of Ilmurea, Savith built a small fort in a secluded area a mere stone’s throw from the deep scars in the earth that led to Ilmurea from the surface. Within this stronghold, called Tazion, Savith built a map of the region to plot her final assault on the serpentfolk city. When Savith ultimately perished defeating the serpentfolk god Ydersius, her followers built a city in the jungle above Ilmurea and named it Saventh-Yhi (“Savith’s Grave”) in her honor. With the rise of the city, Tazion waned in importance, though it still stood near one of the entrances to the hidden valley.

Decades later, cultists of Zura, the demon lord of vampires, were banished from Saventh-Yhi for their dangerous beliefs. The carvings in the alcoves of the Temple of Blood are written in Ancient Olman, and tell the history of this particular Zotzilla cult in three stages. They have been transcribed by the serpentfolk priest we killed into her journal in a language I identify, after much research, as Alko, a dialect of Undercommon that is different enough from undercommon to not be easily understandable by those fluent in Undercommon. Your knowledge of languages tells you it is used deep in the

The southern alcove tells of the cult’s genesis in the city of Saventh-Yhi -in the jungle, but is frustratingly vague when it comes to exact details on the legendary city apart from confirming that it was built by Ancient Olmans—this section ends with the cult’s exile from Saventh-Yhi and how they made a dangerous overland journey that ended with them near the shores of a Lake of Blood, which I think is Bloodwater Lake.

The northwestern alcove takes up the story at this point, detailing the cult’s exploration of this island , their discovery and defeat of a large group of serpentfolk who had gone into hiding after the defeat of their kind many years before at Saventh-Yhi, and the creation of this temple. The northeastern alcove plots the cult’s future plans, focusing on how they had hoped to earn the gift of vampirism from Zotzilla by undertaking extensive and vile rituals, and once this gift was theirs, how they planned on making the journey back to Saventh-Yhi to awaken (infect) that city with Zotzilla’s blessing (vampirism). Unfortunately for them, the magical wards surrounding Saventh-Yhi kept them from simply retracing their steps. Thus, they planned to enter the city through Tazion, where they could use Savith’s original magical map to find the “back door” into Saventh-Yhi.

These carvings present a wealth of new information about the Ancient Olman’s presence here, particularly all of the references to the lost city of Saventh-Yhi. Saventh-Yhi is one of the most sought-after lost cities, for legends speak that it was built by the Ancient Olmans. Such a discovery could revolutionize what is known about this ancient empire, and that information alone, properly transcribed and recorded, could be worth thousands.
My research is extremely vague about the location of Saventh-Yhi. I believe this is because of the magical wards around the city.

Aryth 4 -5 I continued to research about Saventh-Yhi and I think I have figured out a theoretical location for Tazion. My research keeps finding a Jaguar temple and Standing Stones in the Screaming Jungle. I have a map and have labeled it with what I think is the right locations. Now that I know this I need to get the group ready to go so we can leave as soon as possible! I would like to get some scrolls to add to my spellbook before we leave. We have 5 days to finish our preparations and be on our way.

12NOV11
Aryth 6 – I was able to purchase the scrolls that I wanted to add to my spellbook today as well as some potions of Remove Disease. Paulo, one of the aides from the library delivered a message to me from SGBW just after lunch. She has asked the group to come and eat with her this evening.

I was able to find everyone in the group except for Tibryn, for our evening with SGBW. When the group arrived we were introduced to a shifter named Iouan. SGBW (Shimmeringglitteringbutteryflywing) told us that Iouan would be a good fit for our group especially since we aren’t sure where Tibryn is. SGBW also gave us our Wayfinders this evening none of them looked the same and they all have a spot for an Ioun stone in them. She explained that if we were lucky enough to find an Ioun that if we place the stone into the socket in the Wayfinder it may unlock other powers from the stone as well as the obvious ones.

Aryth 7- Today I spent the day preparing scrolls for most of the day until Krylyk interrupted me to ask me if I had been here all day!! He explained that someone that looked like me. The individual came in walked up to the bar, ordered a drink took a couple quick sips and walked out! Obviously it wasn’t me we spent some time looking for the assumed changeling that was trying to distract us, and then went back to normal operations even though there was a fisherman that seemed to be watching us Iouan actually sat with the fisherman and talked for some time. Iouan said he (the fisherman) seemed fairly normal except that his glass seemed to empty quicker than he was drinking.

Aryth 8- We spent today finalizing our preparations to leave tomorrow. Cam went and found a Wand of Cure Light Wounds. Krylyk spent most of the day in the tavern, while I went and made sure that we had all of the supplies that we were promised. I think Krylyk is going to miss the tavern quite a bit when we leave tomorrow!

Aryth 9- We split up this morning into two groups to make the canoe trip to the main Island, the first group was Iouan, Tonk and I. The second consisted of Krylyk and Cam. We had hoped that by splitting up people may not have realized we were leaving. We reached Mora safely in about two hours and once Krylyk and Cam caught up with us we departed Mora and traveled by foot to Barrowane, where we were able to find a place to sleep in one of the locals’ huts for the evening. The landscape here is so much more colorful than what I am used to up in Breland, it is alive and vibrant. The natives had some sort of ritual that they preformed tonight as we were getting ready to settle in to sleep, their culture fascinates me.
Aryth 10- this morning we start out early hoping to make it to Tanaroa by midday. It was a quick and uneventful journey we did see some Monkeys and other indigenous creatures but none of them seemed interested in us too much.

When we reached Tanaroa I went to the village’s medicine man to check on T’Challi, she is still in a coma this saddens me as I had hoped that there was something that he could have done to help her. Iouan escorted me there to see her and when we went in to the hut he was horrified to discover that my companion was his wife! He asked me how long had I known her and if I knew where his children were. I had to give him the news that they were killed by Vanthus Vanderboren, whom we were originally hired to help Lavinia find. I also explained to Iouan that T’Challi had told us that Vanthus was a wereboar. I left Iouan with her for a bit while I went to see if any other groups like ours had been seen heading north of the wall recently. The medicine man told me that a group that matched the description of the Jade Ravens went north a day ahead of us. At that time I thought that might be why another me was seen in Farshore, what a better way to get our attention away from the docks then to have us go on a wild changeling chase!! What a fool I can be if that is the case!
After about an hour we regroup and decide it is time to find the Tempest! The locals tell us he has a cave half way up a cliff down the shoreline a ways. They also let us know that he is usually a very unhappy individual, but he does have a fondness for black pearls. On our way to his cave we see a small group of Olman natives with boats on the shore, and when we stop to ask them about the Tempest they show us where his cave is and let us know that they are pearl diving. We unsuccessfully tried to convince them to go out and dive for us and bring us a black pearl. We were hoping that if we bring the Tempest one, he would be more likely to help us. They do however tell us that we can use some of their gear to go out and do it ourselves. After a little bit of discussion we decide that Krylyk and Iouan are probably our best bet at diving for pearls, so the two of them go out and give it a try. After 20 minutes or so they returned with 23 oysters! 22 of them were regular pearls that we donated to the local divers, which seemed to make them extremely happy and friendly towards us. Luckily for us the last oyster had a black pearl in it! Iouan did tell us that he saw a green female down in the reef but Krylyk didn’t see her!

We went to see the Tempest and ask him if he would be willing to guide us on our journey next. Our conversation was not as fruitful as we would have hoped, before we could even offer up our gift he told us to leave him alone. Somehow I have turned into the groups’ diplomat, this is a job that I am not very good at and I will definitely have to work on, I do miss Jelpair and his ability to talk for us. After some discussion the Tempest tells us that if we bring him a black pearl and the feather of a Thunder bird he would agree to discuss the possibility of being our guide. With that we decided to try and find a Thunder bird’s nest since we already had a black pearl from Krylyk and Iouan’s earlier efforts. Again we ask the Natives were we might find a Thunder birds nest. They were more than happy to tell us that there was one up on the cliff above the Tempests Cave. With that knowledge Cam was able to dimension door himself up there to grab a feather quick. However there were none in the nest only a couple of eggs. Fortunately for us though the mother of those eggs came to defend them. In what was a fairly quick battle we were able to kill the bird and collect the feather that we needed, mostly because of Iouan and Krylyk’s ability with their bows and a well placed Acid Arrow spell on my part. Again we made the local native tribesmen happy by giving them the large bird and it eggs for food.

With our tribute in hand we approach the Tempests cave. He allows us in and has us sit around his fire pit where he starts a fire and starts mixing up the items we have bought to him along with some other items in a ceremony of sorts. During the ceremony he has us eat some form of root, which was definitely some kind of hallucinogen. I started to feel as if I was leaving my body and noticed that my companions were doing the same! All of a sudden I was no longer myself but had taken on the form of a tiger and I was flying above the island. The others all formed as a different creature as well, Tonk formed as a deer, Cam was an insect of some sort, Krylyk was a raven, Iouan was a hawk, and the Tempest was a giant crab. As we all “fly over the island we see a large lost city ahead of us with five different armies approaching it from different directions. In the middle of the city there was a blackness maybe even a large black hole. As we fly over the city a great serpent springs out of the blackness and attacks us. I am definitely not used to being a tiger since I had no abilities to cast spells! However we were able to destroy the serpent with Tonk the deer goring the head off of it with his antlers. With that we all seemed to exit the trance and the Tempest tells us that he would be willing to act as our guide. He tells us that there is a great darkness under the city and that he must assist us in defeating it, he also tells us his name is Nichechny, we decided to sleep in his cave tonight as we are all tired from our out of body experience. As I sit to write to night though I am thinking that the serpent has to represent the serpent creatures that I had read about in my study of Saventh-Yhi.

Aryth 11- We wake up and take the quick trip back into the village of Tanaroa to find our chronicler Garonne. We know that we have to get a move on since the main party from Morgrave will be now only ten days behind, and the Jade Ravens are now 2 days ahead of us! We travel fairly easily today seeing only the jungles natural inhabitants and none of them are aggressive towards us.

That evening we set up a watch system and I cast Rope Trick for us to sleep in. during Krylyk’s watch the group is woken up by his whistle blowing, actually I am woke up by Garonne shaking me screaming that there is something out there in the jungle. When I finally realize what is going on I notice Krylyk, Tonk and Iouan fighting 4 Giant Cobras, as we fight them one of them flees because of its injuries. In what turns out to be one of our groups longest combats in some time we were able to kill the remaining three cobras, with Tonk decapitating the last one much like his spirit form did in our dream combat with the serpent over the city and much like Saventh killed the serpent god Ydersius. Very interesting.

Aryth 12- We begin today by exiting the jungle and start our travel across the savannah towards the tar pits. We find a tree that has approximately 30 dead bodies’s hung from it, all in different states of decay! I remember that some of the local tribes like to do this sort of thing to chase away slavers and grave robbers, they try to defend their land and people in any way they can. After a long days travel we find a small camp of hide tents that are occupied by the Rakasta, a tribe of shifters that roam the savannah. We approach their camp with weapons drawn; this is their custom as it shows strength and courage. They allow us to share their camp and we notice that they are burning some of their fallen on the other side of camp. They explain that they have been attacked the last two nights by someone or thing that has killed a couple of their watch each night, after a little prodding they include that their fallen comrades were decapitated and that their heads were taken! We tell them that we will help keep watch with them tonight. Half way through the night I am awoken by screams, there has been another attack. Krylyk went out to help and by the time we had all gotten there all that was left were two headless bodies. Krylyk tracks the creatures for a short distance before he loses the trail. He marks the spot where we are and head back to camp, we can come back during the day to see if we can pick up the trail in better light.

Aryth 13- When we get up today the Rakasta are already pulling up their tents and camp. They tell us that they can no longer stay in this area and that we should think about moving on too. As a group we have decided that we will track this creature and kill it for the safety of the caravan that will be following us in 9 days. Krylyk with help from Iouan is able to find the trail again and it takes us most of the day to follow it to rocky out cropping we lose it again, but this time with the whole group looking we are able to find a bloody paw print of what looks to be an extremely large lion. With a little more tracking we find what we think is a den and check it out a little, only to discover that there is probably two of these beasts living here. We set up a camp in my Rope Trick for the night. Cam casts some form of spell that traps the area around the

26NOV11

Aryth 14- We exit the Rope Trick and check out the area only to find a fresh head at the outer limits of the trap spell that Cam had cast the night before. These creatures are intelligent and are toying with us! An’Atl summoned a dire rat to sneak into the den and give us a scouting report. The report was that the den was small and would be difficult for us to maneuver in to engage them in combat. After some discussion we decide that we are resting today and setting a trap tonight to try and deal with these beasts once and for all hopefully. I am going to take the rest of the day to restudy the spells that I think I might need for tonight’s encounter!

Finally it is evening, we set what we think is a trap for the beasts. Iouan sits out in the open just downwind of where we think they would be coming from while Krylyk and I are on one side, on high ground, and Cam, Tonk and An’Atl do the same on the other side. Fairly early in the evening most of the group spots the beasts coming, everyone but me that is! I don’t notice them until Krylyk who is standing next to me fires an arrow at one of them. When I do finally se them I notice that they are Dire Lions with jet black fur, and they seem to have some infernal blood in them. Krylyk hits one of them with a couple arrows and it decides to come our way. Meanwhile Iouan is attacked by the other and took an extremely hard hit. An’Atl morphed himself into an Allosaurus and rushed in to help Iouan out. Tonk followed him into battle as well. I cast at it and managed to damage it with Magic Missiles. Cam and I both summon Hound Archons to help us fight them, unfortunately Tonk killed one of them (yes one of the Hounds). The rest of the combat was rather easy and went in our favor. Afterwards While Cam was helping heal everyone that was injured I took a little time to dissect one of the Dire Lions and determined that they were in fact Fiendish Dire Lions.
Since we had spent the day resting and preparing for battle, we made the decision to travel by night since it is cooler to do so. As the sun rose up in front of us we notice that there were tents up ahead. The Rakasta tribe had camped here. We approach the camp the same way we had days earlier with weapons drawn, and informed them that we had killed the beasts and burned their bodies as they had requested

Aryth 15- We spend the morning celebrating our victory with them, and they give us a shrunken monkey head that was enveloped in a dweomer of moderate abjuration, they explain that that if we were to touch an evil outsider with it, the creature would be banished back to its home plane.

The rest of the day we spend resting, while the Rakasta continue to celebrate our victory and watch over us. That evening we thank the Rakasta tribe for their hospitality and ask them to watch out for the main group of our expedition that should be traveling behind us in about 10 days or so. We take the time to describe Shimmeringglimmeringbutterflywings and ask if the group is not led by her if they can possibly give false information to them.
After leaving the Rakasta tribe’s camp we realize that we have a decision to make. Cut through some heavy jungle or stay close to the Lake of Blood. We decide to stay just outside of the heavy jungle but still about a couple hundred yards away from the lake. About halfway through the night we see what we think is a fireless campsight with 4 or 5 sleeping body’s and decide that we should stay away from them, I am hoping that this is the four Jade Ravens and their guide. If we are about to pass them I am thrilled when we camp tomorrow in the Rope Trick I will ask our people on watch to keep a close eye if they catch up with us!!
As we skirt their camp and get closer to the lake we hear a Pteranodon screech and a sleet storm start up just off to our left. Now I know that An’Atl seems to like to turn into dinosaurs, I will however have to explain to him that technically Pteranodons are not dinosaurs but simply large flying reptiles that are common to this area, not that it matters though I guess. Anyways with the screech and a sleet storm showing up to our left we would have to assume that there is some trouble in that area! The group looks over towards the sleet storm and sees nothing while the Pteranodon lands and turns into a Stegasoris, as the sleet storm goes away. With all of that we notice a Dire Ape up in a tree about 30 feet looking like he wanted to jump down on Tonk. The Dire Ape let out a terrible scream that gave all of us a chill up our spine, but all of us were able to stand our ground, except Garrone that is he takes off running towards the lake. I immediately cast Ray of Enfeeblement on the Ape and Iouan takes off trying to retrieve Garrone. The Ape jumps out of the tree and bites me; Krylyk launches a volley of arrows into the creature killing it. As the ape slumps to the ground we hear a hideous laugh and notice a Shadow Demon rising up out of its lifeless body and dive into the shadows. I should have realized that there was more to that ape when it screamed and Garrone took off. After a couple of rounds of nothing happening I hear it chanting to cast a spell I unleash a fireball in the direction of the chanting hoping to hit it and disrupt its attempt to cast a spell. I think I hit my target however I did not disrupt the spell as 3 Alligators for the group, minus Iouan who is still chasing after Garrone, to fight. The Demon follows up his summoning spell with a fireball of his own, again following the noise of his chanting I cast another fireball off of my scrolls in his general direction. This Shadow demon is extremely difficult to deal with especially at night with there being so many shadows for him to hide in. I am hoping that I am doing damage to him as it is hard to target something that you can’t really see. Krylyk, cam and Tonk take care of the alligators while the demon cast Lightning Bolt at some of the group. I hear him casting another spell and as I try and pay attention to where he may be to read off my last fireball I feel the burning sensation of a Scorching Ray spell and I fall unconscious. I am not sure how long I am down for but I do wake up to Tonk standing over me with one of my potion bottles empty and in his hands! He must have grabbed one out of my haversack. Cam also ran over to me and asked his God to heal me. I was able to see the demon for a split second and use my last Fireball scroll against it. The demon survived my attempt to burn it to death though. An’Atl had summoned a Dire Bat which was able to find the demon and give us a clue as to where it was. Krylyk continued to let volleys of arrows off in the direction of the bat and demon. At that time Cam and I both summoned a group of Celestial Dire Bats determining that they could find it and hit it even since they were “good” creatures. One of Cam’s bats was able to finish the demon off for us with a smiting bite! We definitely need to work on our ability to communicate better during and even before battle. Especially if some of us are going to be in the form of creatures that can’t speak!!!
As we try and mend our wounds I realize that with all of this combat going on there is no way that the people sleeping in that camp should still be asleep. Once the entire group is back together (Iouan brought Garrone back) we go check and see if they took off during our battle. We find that the “sleeping campers” are actually dead people that the Shadow Demon had killed. 3 of them were Olman Porters, the other two were Liamia, and Tolen of the Jade Ravens. We quickly search their belongings and and dispose of the bodies of the Olman porters with their traditional ways. I however tell the group to leave the two fallen Jade Ravens lie where they are, if their companions didn’t think it was important enough to take care of their friends body’s then why should we! We do see some tracks leading off to the north and with that decide that we would be better off traveling for about an hour to get out of the Screaming Jungle. When we exit the jungle I cast Rope Trick and we climb up and rest and heal for the rest of the day! I take the time to examine what we found and inform the group of everything.

Our findings:

A broken Musket (Iouan is holding it for now)
Magical Leaf Armor (1). We all agree that it would be best for An’Atl to use
Two potions: one of Cure Moderate Wounds (myself), and one of Bears Endurance (Tonk)
A scroll of Fly (Me)
Amulet of Natural Armor (
1) (me)
Cloak of Charisma (2) Cam
A ring of Protection (
2) I take this one and give my ring of protection +1 to An’Atl
And lastly 150 gp for the group to split.

Aryth 16- We rest here for the day, during that time I take the time to do a little repair work on Tonk before we leave that evening.

Aryth 17- We rest today and travel by night again. Thanking our lucky stars that there have been no more encounters.

Aryth 18- Today is our 9th day on the trail, the main group will be leaving Farshore tomorrow and we are only a day away from where I think Tazion is. We decide today that we will continue to travel by night tonight even though we will have to enter the Screaming Jungle again halfway through the night and finish the nights travel in the jungle. After talking to the group we did also decide to go straight to Tazion and not to check out the Temple of the Jaguar, which is about a half a day’s journey out of the way. I am excited about the prospect of finding Tazion tomorrow morning and am hoping that tonights travel will be safe!

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The Journal of Silas Velbur - Tazion
18-21 Aryth, 998

Aryth 18- Today is our 9th day on the trail, the main group will be leaving Farshore tomorrow and we are only a day away from where I think Tazion is. We decide today that we will continue to travel by night tonight even though we will have to enter the Screaming Jungle again halfway through the night and finish the nights travel in the jungle. After talking to the group we did also decide to go straight to Tazion and not to check out the Temple of the Jaguar, which is about a half a day’s journey out of the way. I am excited about the prospect of finding Tazion tomorrow morning and am hoping that tonight’s travel will be safe!

Aryth 19 – After a full day’s sleep, we entered the screaming jungle [sic] this evening. Not to far into the jungle we realize why the jungle has been named that. The monkeys are extremely loud and annoying, not to mention the birds, bats and too many different insect to name! Our travel tonight is uneventful besides the noise. As the sun started rising above the trees, we entered a clearing with a stream running through with four Olman women near the far shore of the stream. They offer to feed us and talk to us about the area.

Zakea [sic] is their leader or at least it seems like she is. She sits with the group as the other three seem to do most of the work around the site to prepare the food for us. Zakea tells us that they are Zeng [sic] Spirit Dancers, which does make sense as to why they would be so far away from any settlements. After spending a little bit of time talking with them and watching how they are acting a couple of us notices that the other three women are acting strangely almost as if they are charmed. So I try and cast detect magic in a way as to not draw any unwanted attention, to see if that was the case. Unfortunately I am not as sneaky or nonchalant as I would have like to have been. Zakea [sic] is obviously upset at my doing so, and as a result she decides to show us what she really is. Zakea [sic] was a Succubus!! The group jumped right up and into action extremely quick. Tonk andIouan both engage her in melee while Krylyk peppers her with his usual volley of arrows. Their attacks do not seem to be affecting her like they should be though, so when it is my go at her I decide to try to use the Monkey Head Idol that the Rakasta tribe had given us a few days earlier, hoping that what they told me was true about that idol. I stepped forward and stuck her with it. She let out a scream of pain mixed with disbelief and was banished right back to the Abyss where she belonged. The Rakasta tribe was right thank the Gods!!

With Zakea [sic] gone the other three woke up out of her enchantment and offered to dance for us as our reward. Their dancing was amazing, and afterward they offered to perform a ritual tattooing of our spirit totems on each of us. After receiving our tattoos we rest for the remainder of the day, some of us actually rest while a couple of us enjoy the companionship of the beautiful young Olman women!

Just before nightfall Tonk climbs one of the taller trees to take a look around and see how far the mountains are. He informs us that they are about three miles away, but he also sees that there is a good size clearing of in to the south about seven miles away. After a quick discussion we decide to head for the clearing to the south. We thank the Olman women for their company and head south. After about 6 hours of travelling south we find a wall that seems to go for quite some ways, [[An’ Atl]] turns into an eagle to do some quick reconnaissance on the other side of the wall and when he comes back to us tells us that we have definitely found a large ruined settlement that is surrounded by a wall. With that information we decide that we might be better off resting here until day break. So I cast Rope Trick and up we all went.

Aryth 20- We wake to the sounds of the monkeys again this morning, there are times that I swear I can almost understand them now!Tonk tells us that just before dawn he saw three very large black widow spiders (about the size of horses) climb the wall.

After eating a quick breakfast we start to walk along the wall to see if there are any tracks leading into the ruins. Krylyk actually climbs the wall and walks along the top of it! After a short time traveling east we find a break in the wall but decide to continue our perimeter walk to look and see if there is any evidence that one of the other groups beat us here. Halfway around the wall at it’s southern most point there is another break. However not far from this one there is a three story ziggurat that has Girallon and three Chimpanzees wearing armor on the second level of it. We try very carefully not to be seen as we continue or walk around the perimeter wall. The west side of the wall seems to be engulfed by a tar pit and as we come around to the north almost where we started we find another opening in the wall. As we look for tracks of other expeditions again we notice a trap at this entrance. We continue on our way to where we started and decide that it would probably be best if we scaled the wall and entered Tazion that way. We are able to scale it fairly easily and proceed toward a set of ruins that are not far from the wall.

When we get to the edge of the jungle near the ruins An’Atl saw last night, we discover that there are 6 of the armor wearing chimps here sunning themselves. An’ Atl tells us that they are called Charau-ka, they are an extremely [sic] race of semi-intelligent primates that are native to the area. After a little discussion between the members of the group it was determined that our best course of action was to just attack them as opposed to trying and bargain with them. I am not sure if I agree especially since I have never dealt with them before and I would love to learn more about their culture. With that being said, we took this group totally by surprise as Cam dimension leaped into the middle of them and used his negative energy to damage them all, while the rest of us used missile weapons to quickly defeat them. It was some of the easiest combat we have had in some time; however we did take them totally by surprise. As we looked through their supplies six tentacles came up out of the well and lashed out at Cam. Four of them wear [sic] able to grab him and drag him towards the pit. Cam dimension leapt out of their grasp while the rest of us all jump into the melee attacking different tentacles. Cam took a beating by this 10 tentacle creature, when all of the tentacle either withdrew back down the well or laid there lifeless. Tonk took it upon himself to jump down the pit and make sure the creature was dead. That was not one of Tonk’s best decisions as the well is sixty feet deep. While down the well Tonk finds an old backpack along with a breastplate and scythe. On his way back up the well he also finds a dug out corridor about halfway up. Once Tonk gets finishes his climb to join us, I take the time to check out the gear he found down at the bottom of the well. The scythe is magical, while the breast plate is masterwork. Inside of the backpack we also find two potions of cure serious wounds!

We decide to climb down the well and check to see if that tunnel leads to anything. The tunnel seems to go for an extremely long way heading towards the heart of the ruins (South). After some time we start to smell tar, Krylyk moves out ahead of us to scout out what might be causing the smell. He comes back to us to tell us that up ahead is an intersection that has tar seeping through the ceiling and a large puddle of it covering the floor making it difficult to move through the intersection. Cam uses a stone shape spell across to the center of the intersection so An’ Atl can walk out and look in the three different tunnels. There is tar in all of the tunnels but he see’s an end to the tar in the tunnel heading east so we decide that Tonk could carry us one at a time through the tar to the safety in the eastern tunnel. Most of us get sickened by the smell of the tar but after a while we feel better. We travel east for what seems to be 30 minutes or more only to find that this tunnel starts to slope downward and the floor is covered by a liquid substance. The liquid is water to our relief so we decide to continue through the water. After a while the tunnel opens up to twenty feet across and the waters is almost chest deep, but I can see some light up ahead so we continue on. All of a sudden an extremely large water elemental pops up and engulfs An’Atl. The next round it moves forward and engulfs Krylyk as well. An’Atl morphs into some form of water lizard, which is too large for the elemental to hold and attacks it. Cam and myself both summon earth mephits to fight it. Iouan was the next one of us to be swallowed by this thing, while An’Atl summons a crocodile to help us out. Tonk follows Iouan into the beast and all seems hopeless as our three best fighters are drowning in the belly of this thing. I continue to use my wand of magic missiles against it and the crocodile and mephitis do what they can to help as well. Finally the elemental stops spinning and our companions spill out of it. Krylyk falls unconscious just as we finish off the elemental. We quickly check for treasure before we decide to continue towards the light I saw just before the elemental appeared.

The light is actually the end of the tunnel we come up out of some ruins at the eastern most part of Tazion. We look around a bit and decide to travel through the jungle towards a rock outcropping where there is another group of the Charau-ka sunning themselves. We sneak up on them to the best of our ability after another quick and fairly easy battle we kill all but one and try to question him. He informs us that his leader Ragaruru will eat us all. After a bit of careful interrogation he does tell us that there are more serpentfolk here and that they are in the ziggurat and that as far as he knows none of the other groups have arrived yet. With that information we decide that it is best that we kill him so he doesn’t go and let the rest of the Charau-ka or the serpentfolk know we are here. It has been a difficult day and we decide to go back to the jungle and camp for the evening. I cast rope trick and we all climb up to rest.

Aryth 21 morning entry- As I study for my spells this morning I have a breakthrough and realize that I now understand a couple of new spells that might be helpful to us, Minor Globe of Invulnerability, and Stoneskin. With all of the studying of the ancient Olman language I have been doing I now feel pretty confident that I am fluent in that dead language as well, again I am hoping that this will help us discover everything we need here to find Saventh-Yhi.

With us all rested we climb out of the rope trick cautiously. We would have to be dumb to thank that the two groups of Charau-ka we defeated hadn’t been discovered yet. As we get to the edge of the jungle we spot a group of Charau-ka patrolling by the ruins near the old aqueducts, we watch them head south towards the jungle. After we wait for a couple of minutes we make a dash from our hiding spot in the jungle across the clearing, it is about a 300 foot distance and we tried to be stealthy, however with our group it never seems to work out that way. We made it to the other patch of jungle near the northern most wall, and as far as we can tell we were not spotted. We were able to make our way through this part of the jungle with no issues until we get to the ziggurat that we saw yesterday. We again stay in the jungle and do our best to evaluate our situation. The ziggurat is about 100 feet from the jungle. The Girallon, and three Charau-ka are still guarding the second tier of the ziggurat, and the main entrance is guarded by two Serpentfolk wielding great swords. There is another entrance that we can see that is not guarded as far as we can see but we have to move a little more towards the side to make sure the serpentfolk don’t see us.

An’Atl summons a pony and sends him to the other side of the ziggurat to hopefully distract the guards long enough for us to sneak into the side entrance. It works; the Girallon and Charau-ka all head over to the other side of the ziggurat long enough for us to stealthily enter through the side entrance. One by one we sneak into the room which is little more than an entrance hall with a mosaic floor and ceiling. I start to study the mosaics and notice that the floor depicts the 13 moons of Eberron, which is interesting since there have only been 12 moons for nearly 1000 years or more. The thirteenth moon disappeared when the 13th house was destroyed.

As I was studying Iouan hears something in the next room/hallway and closes his Wayfinder killing the light that I was using to study the mosaics. Krylyk moved through the room to look through the doorway to see a serpentfolk patrolling that hallway, and he thinks he hears another one coming from the other direction in that hall as well. As we all try to hug the wall and stay quite [sic], two serpent folk burst through that entrance way to attack us. These guys are definitely tougher then the Charau-ka we fought yesterday. As we finish them off two more come from that same doorway and I hear something behind us. When I turn to look there are the 2 serpentfolk that were guarding the front entrance coming toward us, so I quickly cast web to close that entrance up, we do not have enough frontline troops to fight on two fronts! That seems to hold them off but I continue to watch that door just to make sure, if they try and break through I can always set the web ablaze. The group kills the second set of serpentfolk just in time for an extremely large serpentfolk to bulrush [sic] his way through the door! I quickly cast enervation on him as Krylyk peppers him with arrows. Tonk, An’Atl, and Iouan enter into melee with him. He was tough! It took a couple of magic missiles along with the rest of the group hitting him to finally down him. However as he falls the two that were trying to enter through the entrance that I cast web on (or at least I assume it was them) jumped in his place. Just as we think it can’t get worse, the Girallon roars from the other side of the webbed doorway, bursting through the webbing. Tonk, and An’Atl were fighting the Serpentfolk, while Cam, Iouan, and Krylyk tried to keep the Girallon and Charau-ka -ka from over taking the rear of the party! It was just so chaotic! Iouan decided halfway through this to attack Cam. The look in his eyes told us he wasn’t in control of himself. I notice multiple Charau-ka -Ka heads peering through the door behind the Girallon as if they were about to climb through the top of the doorway and stay on the ceiling. Cam tried to dispel whatever was affecting Iouan while I decided to cast my fireball of the other side of the door behind the Girallon hoping to catch as many of those Charau-ka as I could. As the situation calmed down somewhat, Krylyk and myself decided to run outside of the hall and there was only one Charau-ka out there and he was climbing on the side of the ziggurat. He attempted to cast feeblemind on me!! I was able to fight it off, thank the Gods!! Obviously this is no ordinaryCharau-ka. The rest of the group funnels out of the entrance hallway just in time to be caught in a lightning bolt cast by him!! We exchange spells back and forth, and Cam actually cast a stone shape on the wall of the ziggurat that incases its feet and traps him on the wall. With that the spell casting Charau-ka just disappears. It was an extremely chaotic combat. As we look about the area quick I realize that there are nowhere near enough dead out here to account for all of the heads I had seen earlier so I must assume that it had used a mirror image spell as well earlier. We decide at that time to grab everything we can from the dead and check out the rest of the ziggurat hoping to find him. I think it is a safe bet that he was not a Charau-ka, and that he was probably a serpentfolk deceiving us much like the original one we ran into at the one temple when we rescued the other castaways a month ago, but that one cast divine spells and this one is casting arcane ones! Here is a list of items we found after the battle:

4 Masterwork Great swords, 1 Large Masterwork Great sword, 2 Masterwork Darkwood clubs (I claimed one), 1 Masterwork Cold Iron Spear/blowgun, 20 Darts, 9 flasks of poison
1 Potion of Cure Light Wounds, 3 Potions of Cure Moderate Wounds We used 2 of them)

After we collected all of that gear we deiced [sic] to do a quick once over through the ziggurat hoping to find that spell casting Charau-ka/ Serpentfolk and finish it off. Unfortunately as we made our way through it we found no sign of him. We did find some other interesting things instead though. On the first level of the ziggurat there was one room that we were unable to enter. It had great bronze double doors that had no hinges or handles to open them with. Cam tried to dimension leap into that area with Iouan and Krylyk but they had no luck the actually ended up on the other side of that room in an adjacent hallway!

The second level of the ziggurat had a couple of rooms on it there was one area that we could not enter here as well it was protected by a cube of force about 20 on each side. We also found a room with a backpack in it. The backpack contained the following:

1 Heavy Gold Statue, 1 Gold Dragon Comb w/ red garnet eyes, 1 Ring of Force Fangs (holds 9 preloaded charges of Magic Missiles), 1 jeweled electrum ring, 3 large gems (Amber, Jet, Star Sapphire) all radiate magic!!

While I was studying the magical auras of the gems I noticed magic radiating from behind a wall. We examined the wall to find a secret compartment in it holding an ancient magical sword that we gave to Iouan.

There was also a journal from the serpentfolk spell caster in the backpack. The journal is written in a language that I am not familiar with so I read one of my scrolls of comprehend languages and started reading through the journal quickly. While I read the journal I found out that it was definitely a Serpentfolk that was casting at us and disappeared. Their name is Isslar and he (?) claims to have been chosen to prepare the way for his kind to find their way home. He has been studying the puzzle that Savinth had left behind and has still not able to figure it out. He talks about how some of his degenerate kin have joined him and that there will be more following soon. He talks about the Idols and the stones that are needed to open the way. And that he has three stones yet there are four idols, and that he has no clue which stone goes to which idol. He cannot tell the stones apart, and because of that he is having difficulty. Lastly he talks about how he has been able to enthrall the Charau-ka, and that he has tasked them with finding the last stone. He has little faith in their ability to do so, but is happy that they at least are able to keep others from disturbing his research. I can only assume that he is extremely unhappy that we have been able to disturb his research and stolen his notes and gems!

We decided to check out the third level of the ziggurat and discovered it held nothing of any worth that we could find. It was obvious that the Charau-ka and Girallon lived up here by the mess that they left behind though.

From the height of the third level we could see a garden on the north side of the ziggurat with four Idols in it all hovering a little of the ground. We all went down to the garden to investigate it. Each of these idols had their hands out like they could be holding a rock of some sort. The Idols also had coloring as well: Purple, Yellow, Silver, and White. With the knowledge we gathered from Isslar’s journal, and also realizing that serpentfolk, much like their slithering kin, are colorblind. We decided to place the Amber gem into the hands of the yellow Idol, it fit perfectly! As soon as we put it in the Statue said “Where night is banished I ride in triumphant glory” Realizing that this is going to be an important part of the puzzle on finding Saventh-Yhi we contemplated trying the other 2 gems into the different idols, but we could detect necromantic auras and decided that if we made the wrong choice there could be a significant penalty that we weren’t willing to pay. So we will find the missing gem before trying any other gems in the idols. That decision has led us to head off towards the Charau-ka’s area in the middle of these ruins. Since we know that they are looking for the gem for the serpentfolk that is our best bet at this time.

Aryth 21 evening entry – It is a sad evening tonight! Iouan laid his life down to help the rest of us escape with our lives. After An’Atl did some reconnaissance for us by flying over the walled in area that the Charau-ka lived in we decided that we could make a good assault on it by climbing over the main wall and attacking a small group of them. It made sense since we figured they would never thank [sic] to watch over the top of the wall. An’Atl and I flew over the wall while the rest of the group (Tonk, Krylyk, Cam, and Iouan). Once the group made it to the top of the wall Cam dimension leapt into an area, and used his ability to channel his negative energy to damage most of the Charau-ka that were there. The rest of us took shots with our different missile weapons from the top of the wall. To our surprise the Charau-ka were quick to react and were able to charge at Cam even though we thought he would have been safe where he was. The tar pits that were scattered throughout the area made it difficult for us as well. One of the Charau-ka had a large pet snake as well and was able to cast some divine spells at us. As the battle slowly started to turn bad for us Iouan, and Tonk climbed down the wall to try and rescue Cam, who was in a very desperate situation being surrounded by a group of Charau-ka. Krylyk continued to fire his bow from above as An’Atl tried to get control of the snake. I summoned three fire elementals to assist us in the fight but there were just too many Charau-ka for us to handle and we decided to retreat. Krylyk covered Tonk, Cam, andIouan as they tried to climb the wall and escape. Tonk made it no problem Cam used his last dimensional leap for the day and made it safely to the other side of the wall, but poor Iouan couldn’t make it up the wall. Every time he grabbed at vines to help himself up the wall they ripped right out of the wall on him. Krylyk had to jump off the wall for his own safety as they Charau-ka started climbing the wall to follow our escape. Iouan tried again to climb the wall but again he pulled out a handful of vines. I commanded the elementals to dive into the tar pits to cover our escape but it wasn’t enough to help Iouan. He screamed for An’Atl and myself to fly away and stopped trying to climb the wall and just started fighting the Charau-ka again. As I looked back over my shoulder all I could see was thick black smoke coming out of the tar pits and I could hear the sound of battle. We waited for a while hoping that we might see him coming towards the jungle that we are hiding in but we haven’t seen him. I fear if the Charau-ka didn’t kill him then maybe the heavy nauseating smoke that bellowed out of the burning tar pits did! While I only knew Iouan for 15 days, I will miss him he was a trusted companion and a brave warrior. I cast rope trick for us to climb up and rest in for the night, and as I look back towards the Charau-ka encampment I realize that setting the tar pits on fire may have helped hide our retreat, it also will be much easier for the other groups to find Tazion now, all they have to do is follow the thick black smoke!

As we started setting up our watch system, we heard a noise outside of the rope trick. There was a female voice calling out my name! We talked through the opening in the rope trick to discover that there was a female elf, named River Song hiding in this section of the jungle in the ruins looking for us. It turns out that she was travelling with Shivayne and the House Thuranni. They have already been here and discovered where Savinth-Yhi is. Shivayne writes me that whenever they tried to draw out a map and show us where it was their markings would disappear, so he left us some clues as to how to discover its location.

Clues:
Purple – Jet – South
White – Sapphire – North
Silver – Moonstone – West
Yellow – Amber – East

Sun = Flames
Star = Sextant
Circle = Blindfold
Moon = Women

The note also tells us that the serpentfolk spellcaster has 3 of the gems we need and that the Charau-ka has the other. Since we already have taken the three from the Serpentfolk we will have to find the last one tomorrow. We invite Summer up into the rope trick with us and we rest for the evening.

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The Journals of Silas Velbur - Savinth-Yhi
22-28 Aryth, 998

Aryth 22nd Waking up this morning I was hoping to find that yesterday was just a nightmare, but unfortunately it wasn’t. After talking as a group we have decided that Summer is welcome to join us if she wants to. We have also decided to head back to the Charau-ka settlement and check for the missing Gem [sic] as well as Iouan’s body.

The tar pits are still burning when we get to the Charau-ka’s tree house. An’Atl is able to put some of the fires out with a well placed spell. As we wander through the area we find Iouan’s body and take his belongings to redistribute among the group. Much of them are no good his Wayfinder included. The fumes in this area, from the burning tar pits, were extremely bad and a few of us were having difficult time breathing even to the point that we became ill. We continued to search through the area though hoping that the Charau-ka had left as quickly as we did and left their things behind. We found something in an area that looks to be some kind of shrine to a snake god. The wall of the shrine has a mosaic of sorts with hundreds of bones being used to make a large skeletal serpent; the bones are “tarred” to the wall as well as a large Moonstone that is in the place of the serpents eyes. The Moonstone has a magical aura around it as do a couple of golden lion statues; after I take a couple minutes to look at them I realize that they are Figurines of Wondrous Power. There was also some other treasure there; some gems, and ivory figures as well as some decorative metal statues everything is worth about 1500gp in our estimation! River seems to be good at determining non –magical items values!

With the last magical gem in hand we head back towards the ziggurat and the garden on the north side of it. We are cautious as we enter the garden not knowing if the spell casting serpentfolk is lying in wait for us. We place the gems into each corresponding idol one at a time. As we placed the a gem into an idols hands they spoke:

Black Idol – “Away from the guiding star all things are swallowed”
White Idol – “Fix your eyes to the light of heaven and you shall not be lost”
Silver Idol – “Where warmth is gone often a light still shines”
Yellow Idol – “Where night is banished I ride in triumphant glory”

As we placed the amber gem into the idols hand we heard a loud gong sound that we are sure everything in Tazion also heard. With that we decide to make our way to the second level of the ziggurat where the force cube was yesterday, hoping that it was now open. As we rush past the bronze doors that wouldn’t open yesterday we realize that they are now open. This rooms dimensions are obviously magically enhanced since there is no way that this 40 foot high by 60 foot wide and 60 foot deep room should fit into the this ziggurat let alone a small part of it. A stairway climbs clockwise around the room at a steep angle. Eight pillars rise from the center of the room to a height of 40’. At the top of the stairs stands a pedestal with a plaque of the same goldish/copperish metal as the doors, with a sextant, a woman, a blindfold and a flame engraved on it. On a dais on the south wall stands a statue of Savith standing on the severed head of the snake god Ydersius. In the stone at her feet are 4 circular depressions carved with the symbols for Star, Moon, Dark between the Stars, and Sun. Krylyk, An’Atl and I all make for the top of the staircase to check out the pedestal. Once we make our way halfway up the stairs the bronze doors slam behind us and we are now trapped and need to find our way out. Three sections of the walls with staircases on them started moving forcing anyone on the side off of the staircase, however Cam noticed that theses 5 foot sections of walls that move out are hollow with disks in them. A few seconds later those sections moved back to where they belonged and three other sections slid out. We realized that the disks would fit into the depressions on the dais and started trying to grab them. About every 5 or 6 seconds the wall sections would move again with different ones opening and closing. After about a minute of this happening over and over again, cam heard a hissing noise which we then realize was a poisons gas being released into the room, which made us pick up the pace at trying to find the right disks. Slowly but surely we emptied out all of the different areas behind the walls to find 30 different disks all which had different designs on them we were able to match the four we needed to the correct depressions. Once we had the disks in the statue of Saveth [sic] turned to reveal a portal that we all went through leading us to the “map room”.

We entered the “map room” from there. In this room there is a circular pool of silvery liquid standing at the center of this room under a domed ceiling decorated with crystalline patterns. At either end, passages open to the building’s exterior. Four elaborately carved columns stand in the passageways, one to the north one east, one south and one west. The ceiling represents the night sky and the constellations shown are slightly distorted from today. The four columns are decorated with arcane symbols for Sun, Moon, Stars and Dark between the Stars. Remembering the message that Shivayne had given us we quickly put the gems in the correct pillar, and with that the silvery liquid started to shimmer and it took on the characteristics of a topographical map of the area showing us a river that flowed through a wall in caldron [sic; caldera?] of an old volcano not far from here to the north. The river then opens up into a lake that is surrounded by crumbling vine choked buildings!!! Saventh-Yhi!!! We now know where it is and must make our way there.

We start off immediately and make our way to the river north of Tazion. I take the time to use the sending that SGBW had given us to let her and the rest of the expedition know where we are heading and that they can skip stopping at Tazion totally. We received a reply back telling us that they were only about three days behind and that we should find a good place to create a camp when we get to Saventh-Yhi and to make sure and clear a good path for them.

We travel along the river heading north for the remainder of the day until it is time to stop and camp for the night.

Aryth 23rd- As soon as we wake up today we break camp and continue to head north along the river halfway through the day we encounter a mated pair of small golden furred eight legged creatures. They are extremely aggressive and dangerous!! Poor Garonne was ripped to shreds by one of them! For such small creatures they definitely were one of our tougher challenges of late. An’Atl tells me that they are called Aurumvorax. Luckily for us the rest of us survived but An’Atl, Cam and River were all in bad condition. We did find their den and a baby Aurumvorax as well, whichAn’Atl tells us would make them even more aggressive trying to protect it. There was nothing else of interest in the den so we did the best we could to bandage ourselves up and move on taking all of Garonne’s stuff with us. Tonight I spent some time reviewing Garonne’s journal. His journal is pretty close to what mine is like with a couple of exceptions; He was impressed with how we dealt with the Rakasta tribe and the way we hunted down the two dire lions, he found it interesting and shocking at how An’Atl treats the dead, he was shocked at how we dealt with the Charau-ka in Tazion mentioning the [[Morgrave University] deals with many “typically violent” civilizations and that they should always be dealt with diplomatically at first. He was also very wary of Cam’s brutality, and savageness, and would prefer the group to try and be more diplomatic. He did commend our ability to solve problems and puzzles, with our intellect and ingenuity.

Aryth 24- After an uninterrupted night’s sleep we start heading north again. Before noon we see a group of humanoids heading towards us, and as we get closer to them notice that they are monkey like men somewhat taller than the Charau-ka. They are Venara [sic] a peaceful race of monkey men thankfully I had read Garonne’s journal last night and convinced the group that we should try and be diplomatic with them. We talked for a bit and they told us that they were pilgrims heading home from a pilgrimage. When they saw that some of us were wounded their leader actually stepped forward and healed Cam, An’Atl, and River. We left them before noon thanking them and warning them of the Charau-ka back at Tazion. The rest of the day was uneventful.

Aryth 25- Today should be the day we discover Saventh-Yhi!!! According to our calculations we should be there by midday.

It is just passed midday and we made it!! What a beautiful site it is, just like the shimmering pool suggested!! We entered by the waterfall on the edge of the crater the bowl itself is still extremely heavily covered by the jungle and the river continued right through it. We found a point where the river forked and we followed the southwestern fork only to realize that about 1500 feet downstream the two forks joined back up together making a decent size island between them. We take the time to explore the island and see that it is nothing special but could be a good location to make camp. Where the two forks meet back up we get our first real view of Saventh-Yhi. It is so much bigger than I thought possible!! It is easily a mile wide at some parts and at least a mile and a half long!! Oh to thank [sic] of everything that we will be able to learn by exploring this fabulous city!! One thing that we notice fairly quickly though is that we are not the only living creatures here!! There are numerous Pteranodons flying over the city and many humanoid looking creatures throughout the city. I also notice on the midway down the west side of the city a group of Chimera! I have only seen pictures and read about them I really want to get a closer look at them!!

Aryth 25 Evening- We proceeded into Saventh-Yhi for a little bit of exploration. There are two ways in from what we could tell one way was by using a rickety looking rope bridge which we decided to not use not only because I didn’t like the thought of falling into the river below but there seemed to be some Pteranodons that wear watching it closely. The second route was crossing the river below on little more than wood planks that were laid across to slippery looking rocks, which was being watched by a family of crocodiles. After crossing the planks, we continued deeper into the ruins. This area is definitely uninhabited by any creatures (save the Crocks [sic], & Pteranodons) that we saw near the bridge. There are many ruined building here as well as a couple of sink holes filled with water.

We decided to look into one of the areas with the sink holes, which were near some building that radiated necromantic magic. As we neared the area we started to see a swarm of undead army ants crawl out of the walls. Remembering the living Army Ant swarms that we had dealt with before we thought it might be best to wait for morning to deal with this. Until one of my companions noticed, what they described as a satchel a little bit farther into the ruins. With that knowledge Cam decided to dimension door himself in where it was described the satchel was grab it and run back out. He tried to at least. Once he Bamfed sic_] in to the ruins, he couldn’t see the satchel and the ants started forming up again, not to mention the ghostly Half-Orc that appeared and started screaming it mine I found it [_sic; Note “It’s mine! I found it!”]. We decided then to go find a safe place to camp and come back tomorrow.

Aryth 26- Woke up today and found a place to set up camp for our entire expedition, on the northeastern edge of Saventh-Yhi. We decided that it was important to be in some of the ruins that were separate from the main ruins but still close enough to water to make sure we could stay supplied. The Group took most of the day to set up camp. I spent the day scribing some scrolls that I thought might be necessary for the upcoming exploration, while Krylyk took some time to set up some traps around the perimeter of the camp. As the day was coming to an end, we noticed our old acquaintance Lirith walking towards us from out of the jungle. She told us Shivayne wanted to invite us for dinner this evening, and we decided to take them up on it.

The House Thuranni’s Camp is not that far from ours; however they decided to make their camp deeper into the jungle so it might be harder to find if you didn’t know what to look for. We enjoyed a decent meal while Shivayne told us what they had discovered so far. They have been here for a couple of days. They told us the area directly east of where we encountered the Ghost swarm was swarming with Charau-ka, and Girallon, and that the area to the south of that had troglodyte’s, and they think they may also have found Saventh’s Tomb!! She informs us that they were going to try and initiate contact with the Trog’s tomorrow and try and set up an alliance with them! She asked if we had found anything interesting and we could honestly say no. (I realize that keeping anything from her is not in our best interests as Summer is one of her colleagues). After dinner we headed back to our camp and rested there.

  • Aryth 27-* When we woke up today we realized that our main expedition should be arriving today. An’Atl went up and talked with the Pteranodons and convinced them that there was a better food supply on the other side of the lake, after he accomplished that he waited for the main expedition and then led them down to where we set up camp. SGBW was just as excited as I was and couldn’t wait to start exploring the city but we explained to her it might be best if we waited until tomorrow for her and her group to start doing that. SGBW did introduce us to Kreighton, an Elven Wizard and Keegensic;Note: Keegan], a Dwarven Cleric that are members of Morgrave University.

We did go and check out the area with the ghostly Half-Orc. I cast fly on myself and decided it may be best to go in myself, thinking that the Swarms couldn’t hurt me if I was flying and knowing that I have a couple of ways dealing with the undead that might be effective. The rest of the group set up and were ready to attack. Somehow, we managed this encounter without actually having to fight!! The Hal-Orc sic;Note:half-orc] was a member of an expedition sent by Morgrave University nearly 200 years ago. His name is Nareen Dares, and while he was definitely not the friendliest of individuals I have ever met I was able to tell him that we are working for the same employer and that we would be more than happy to let him be the original discoverer of Saventh-Yhi. With that we agreed to do everything we could to help him get the credit if he helped us keep other groups away as best as he could. He allowed us to take his old satchel and gear which consisted of; 1 heavy Mithral Shield, 3 Mithral spearheads, an Ivory Coffer depicting Olman’s fighting Serpentfolk containing Gems and coins (gems are worth 460gp, 170gp, 476sp, 276cp) a Journal, and a magic ring (which I later identified as a ring of Seven Virtues).

We returned to the camp and told SGBW’s about this and she has agreed to help Nareen get the credit he is due, even after he turned on his group.

Aryth 28- We started out today with An’Atl and myself flying over the ruins to get a feel for everything that is here in the city. We see many things of interest; the ruins are divided up into seven distinct districts.

The first of which is on the northern shores of the lake. Shivayne, was right with the large amounts of Charau-ka on the there, the ziggurat in that district has an interesting statue erected on the top of it of a horned, bat-winged gorilla. There is also a large marble statue of a Cyclops, holding a huge sword and staring into the jungle to the east, as if he is defending the area from something in that direction.

The second district is an island in the middle of the lake with only one functioning bridge leading to it (there are 3 other bridges that are in extremely poor shape). The ziggurat in this district had 50 or more serpentfolk on it with 8 large serpent folk guarding the top of it and a “humanoid” in a cobra hooded robe sic;Note: cobra-headed humanoid] addressing them all. The rest of the district had more serpent folk and zombies throughout it

The third district lies on the eastern side of the lake. Its ziggurat has trees growing on it and there are small humanoids on it, as we fly down to get a better look we see that they are Vegepygmies!! Out in front of the ziggurat there is a large plaza with moss and plants growing all over the paving stones. There is a wide flight of stairs leading underground but it appears to be filled with fungus and mold as well as stings of what could be silk crisscross the area in a web of color. (An’Atl saw something here but it isn’t in my notes)

The fourth district barely touches the lake and is on the south east side. Its ziggurat is decorated with images of giant mantis destroying various cities and killing many different humanoid cultures. We do spy a lone troglodyte riding a dinoncychus the size of a horse near here. There was another plaza in this district that was decorated with 90’ high stone pillars each of which is carved with complex religious images, but it is covered with vines and thick overgrowth so I couldn’t make out much. (An’Atl saw something here but it isn’t in my notes) there was also a golden domed building with magnificent towers all around it, as a fortress on the far eastern side of the district. Not to mention a large complex surrounded by a 30’ high stone wall where a Camulatz sic;Camalutz has created a nest, lucky for both of us we were able to get out of there before it could catch us!!

The fifth district sits at the southern most part of the lake; this district looks to be mostly lost to flooding and mudslides. The main ziggurat has carvings of humans working in fields and tending to livestock. There is a small mud and reed hut on the uppermost tier of it. There is a second ziggurat that is protruding out of some of the flood waters, it is covered in algae as is the lake surrounding it.

The sixth district lies on the south western part of the lake and has what looks to be an extremely wide road leading from the lake that turns into a long stairway with pristine gardens on each side of the stairs. There are statues of humans along the roadway and there are humans tending the gardens! The roadway leads to a group of three large truncated pyramidal structures on each side of the road with humans tending to daily chores in the area (cooking, crafting, ect…). The road continues right up to the ziggurat which is covered with carvings of humans and a beautiful woman with angel wings and a snake tail working together creating works of art. Behind the ziggurat is a large plaza surrounded by a 10’ high stone wall with many lifelike statues standing along the inside of the wall looking like a crowd watching something. (An’Atl saw something here but it isn’t in my notes) the last place of interest in this district is a forty foot tall statue of Saventh triumphantly holding the snake head of Ydersius in one hand and her curved blade in the other.

The last district seems to have no organized inhabitants. The ziggurat has images of carved treasure on it, and it has a large sinkhole along the southwest edge of it. There is also a pool with a small island in it that seems to be the home of a rather large reptile. A building that is low but is surrounded by sharpened stakes with impaled simian skulls and full skeletons hanging on the walls outside of the building. A building that is somewhat submerged in the water of the lake that seems to be muted in color compared to everything else in the area, and lastly we were able to find where we thank the Chimera are nesting.

After we discussed everything we saw de sic:Note: we] decided to head south from our camp and check out the last district. SGBW takes a group out to explore as well and finds some small trinkets but stayed close to the camp. Keegen took a small group to collect supplies for the day while Kreighton stayed in camp with a group to defend it if need be.

We decided to head to the area with the skeletons and simian skulls on sticks first. As we traveled towards our destination we were able to discern that this district looks like it was the economic district with many different merchant houses and banks in the area. We were able to make it there no real problem and as we started checking it out we attacked by a group of Kech. They put up quiet the fight and by the time we were done we had killed over 30 of them and I had used most of my scrolls that I had created just two days earlier. We were in fairly good shape after the combat and decided to check out their building. We found the following in their lair: A potion (Protection from arrows), a wand of charm animals, some ointment (that is magical, which I still need to identify) a bronze armband, a crystal decanter, a black jade idol of a bloated frog demon, a silver medallion depicting a discus thrower worth, 76 gp, 405 sp, and 858 cp.

After fighting the Kechs we decide to head back towards the encampment but take a quick detour to where we saw the large reptile in the pool close to our camp. This encounter was considerably more difficult than the Kechs were as Tonk was swallowed whole and most of the group took damage. Tonk was able to fight his way back out from the inside of the beast and we killed it. We searched the area and found a flawed Lavender Ellipse Ioun Stone. From there we return to camp with enough crocodile meat and hide to make pouches for everyone and feed us a couple days. We also find out that the camp was attacked by an extremely large crocodile. We ate all together as a group and shared what we discovered today. SGBW had very little to report. I tried to talk to Kreighton about possibly sharing spells with one another but he did not seem to be too interested in that, I will have to work on a friendship with him that will show him I am not just a power hungry young upstart.

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The Lost Journals of Silas Velbur - Part 1
1-7 Vult, 998

Vult 1, 998 – After an uneventful night we wake up looking forward to exploring more of the ruins in the merchant district. Before we set out for the day we do notice that the spire on top of the ziggurat in the district with the troglodytes is now emanating a purplish light from the top of it. I wonder if that means Shivayne and the House Thuranni, have managed to explore that ziggurat or did the troglodytes discover something. I will have to try and see if I can talk to Shivayne soon and compare notes.

We set out for the ziggurat this morning, while SGBW ventured into the merchant district too as did Kreighton and his group we told them it would be safest if they tried to stay behind us so we could clear out any inhabitants that were hostile first. Summer stayed behind today trying to help Keegen defend and supply the camp today. When we reach the ziggurat we can see that it is covered with images of merchant trading their good to one another and mounds of many exotic and normal treasures. The southwestern section under the ziggurat has fallen to a sink hole and is filled with water in the bottom of it; there is also a cavern under the ziggurat as well. Krylyk drew his bow and started down to get a good look into the cavern but he couldn’t really see anything so I tossed him a sunrod to throw into the cavern as deep as he could. That action woke up an extremely large Xen’drik Night Bat, which proceeded to fly out of the cavern and pick up Tonk and start to fly off with him. Cam fired off an extremely intelligent (and lucky) spell of silence on the bat, which blinded him!! The bat spiraled out of control, crashing into the ground doing damage to himself and Tonk. Luckily for Tonk the bat dropped him and as it tried to fly away again but Krylyk was able to fire off a volley of arrows that took the creature down silently crashing into some of the buildings near the ziggurat. We checked out the creature’s lair only to find more guano then we ever wanted to see.

We then made our way to where we saw the chimera’s fortress near the lake shore. As we approached one of us (I can’t remember which) was struck with a stream of acid. With that Tonk rushed into the darkened ruins and was hit by another stream of acid and then bit and dropped leaking fluid all over the place. An’Atl proceeded to cast a communal spell of resist acid on all of us, which makes the Chimera’s breath weapon useless against us. Cam and I both ran into repair Tonk as the rest of the group fought on and after a fairly short and somewhat easy battle, we finished them off. I unfortunately did not escape unharmed this time though as one of the lion heads was able to take a bite out of me before we could finish them off. We searched the ruins for any valuable artifacts and found the following: Gloves of arrow Snaring, A Potion of Delay Poison, a Potion of Water Breathing, a golden goblet studded with turquoise, a flawless red glass orb, seven silver rings, four amethysts, five bloodstones, 15 pieces of malachite, 44 pp, 1,281 gp, 2,373 sp, and 5,172 cp. In a separate room, an acid burned skeleton clutched a well preserved Satchel (Handy Haversack) containing a spellbook and a Wand of Daze Monster. After all of that we decide to head back to camp for the day to give me some time to check everything out, and prepare for tomorrow.

Vult 1 Evening- I am in the process of studying the spellbook right now. I cannot believe my luck with discovering this. Whoever’s this was, they were a powerful spellcaster, being able to cast spells that I am not even near capable of yet. With Time I can use them but for now the additions that I can use will be helpful to us, of that I am sure of! I am going to spend a couple of hours an evening to copy these into my books so I can share with Kreighton and then possible sell it to another mage.

What follows is a reconstruction of the timeline of events following Silas’s first journal, and the journal started by Krylyk. This is constructed mostly from the memory of the half-orc along with conversations the group has had with me. – SGBW

2 Vult, 998 – I was saddened today to hear that there was a casualty. Cam was slain in batttle with a clutch of undead Shadows in a partially sunken building on the edge of the lake. His body was not retrievable at this time. I have counciled the Adjunct Faculty to bide their time in retrieving the body, and prepare for what they know are there.

3 Vult, 998 – Determined to try something difference, the Adjunct Faculty decided to head to Farming District to investigate attacks. They take Morwynn, a dwarven priest newly come from Farshore. They head over to investigate some attacks on the Tribe of the Sacred Serpent which they said originated in the swamp to the south. They tracked the creature to an abandoned hostel where they fought a vampire-like creature called a Vrykolakas. Determining several among them to be infected with bubonic plague, the group camps the night in the Farming District

4 Vult, 998 – In the morning, Morwynn cured their diseases and they headed back to the Artisan District. On way back, they found a shadow and Silas tamed it. The group refuses to allow Silas to have a shadow puppy. They headed back to the Merchant District and went back to Cam‘s Grave to retrieve the cleric’s body. Unfortunately, things did not go well, again, and Silas is killed. Furtunately, his body is retrieved.

Our day was not a complete waste. We spent the day in the Merchant’s District, and learned that by sprinkling the steps of the ziggurat with powdered gemstones and having a priest associated with wealth or trade channel divine energy into the spear at the top of the pyramid, the spire could be activated, making appraising and artifact identification easier.

5 Vult, 998 – The Adjunct Faculty returned to Tribe of the Sacred Serpent to discover the attacks haven’t stopped. Osond, unable to raise Silas in his own body, reincarnated him as into the body of a ratkin. Heads back to Farming District, they track down the resting place of the Vrykolakas and kill it. To make sure it doesn’t come back, they stay in the hostel where it laired.

And we decide to turn on the Spear of Wealth.

6-7 Vult, 998 – As the Vrykolakas did not rise again, the Adjunct Faculty returned to camp. Silas teleported to Farshore and purchased a scroll of greater restoration to heal the spiritual damage of being reincarnated.

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The Lost Journals of Silas Velbur - Part 2
8-14 Vult, 998

What follows is a reconstruction of the timeline of events following Silus’s first journal, and the journal started by Krylyk. This is constructed mostly from the memory of the half-orc along with conversations the group has had with me. – SGBW

8 Vult, 998 - Silas returned to Savinth-Yhi from his excursion. The rest of the Adjunct Faculty enjoyed a well needed rest. We didn’t have much luck exploring today either. With the Adjunct Faculty making peaceful contact with the Tribe of the Sacred Serpent, we have decided to move our camp there. Their leader, Osond, has offered us a place in abandoned school of some sort. I have our people packing, and we will be moving over tomorrow.

9 Vult, 998 - The Adjunct Faculty made contact with some Boggards in the Farming District today. Initial contact was hostile, but after the Faculty had slain many of the frog-men, the boggards called for a truce, claining they would bring them before their chieftain. Bringing them to the shores of the swamp which had subsumed the district, the boggards said their chieftain would arrive soon. Well, what arrived was definitely NOT their chieftain; it was a Froghemoth!!! I am very surprised the group did as well as they did, but after swallowing Tonk, the creature swam off into the marsh.

Our exit from the Merchant District was exacerbated by the Dragonmarked Houses moving their cam into the district, at the end of a peninsula where one of the ruined bridges crossed towards the central island. I will have to set up a meeting with Lavinnia Vanderboren. Now that we are all here, we’ll need to start establishing working relatinships. I know the Provisional Govornment has been ove rin the Military District dealing with Charau-ka. We can hear the shots from the [[Ivory Cross] gunmen echoing all over the city. As long as they keep the monkeys in check over there, I am content to let them fight it out while we explore. We have seen some activity on the shores of the overgrown Residential District where we believe the Lhazaar Princes contingent has settled, but they have mad eno move to make contact with us.

Tonk returned this evening, stating that he cut his way out of the beast’s gullet, and walked to shore on the bottom of the swamp. From what he says, the beast still lives.

11 Vult, 998 – We established a new camp today in the abandoned academy in the Artisan District. To do so, we were required to join the Tribe of the Sacred Serpent, and display our artistic talents. During the morning, the district was attacked by a troupe of Charau-ka, which are quickly dealt with. That afternoon, we were contacted by Lt. Lefty LaFoote of the Farshore Provisional Govornment who were having issues dealing with a giant winged demon in the Military District. The Adjunct Faculty traveled to the Military District and slayed the demon, driving off a Charau-ka witch doctor off. They attempted to return back to camp through the Residential District, which is overgrown with vegetation, and inhabited by minute plant humanoids, Vegepygmy, who repulse the Adjunct Faculty’s incursion. They returned to the Military District.

12 Vult, 998 – The Adjunct Faculty attempted to return through the Merchant District, but were attacked by one of the Jade Ravens, the sorceress by the name of Liamae Teslikaria, and a unit of Dragonmarked Merceneries. Once they killed Liamae, the creature reverted to its true form, a serpentlike humanoid! They returned to Lavinnia with the creature to gloat, afterwards they return to the Artisan District. While they were out, reinforcements have arrived from the University. Among them are a half-Orc thug named Grotarg, a halfling named Lem, and a gnome artificer namedJelpair.

13 Vult, 998 – The Adjunct Faculty returned to the Farming District, attacking the ziggurat and killing the Boggard chief and sub-chiefs. They returned to the swamp and ended up killing the Froghemoth. They managed to bring the creature’s corpse back to the Artisan district, where, through magic and taxidermy, the body has been preserved and put on display in the grand courtyard. Our Research Team discovered that the courtyard in the back of the ziggurat in the Artisan District, is some sort of sports arena, and they discover how the game is played. However, two of their numbers reported seeing some large reptilian creatures in the arena. Osond has warned us to stay away from there as the creatures are favored pets of the Radiant Muse.

14 Vult, 998 – The Adjunct Faculty returned again to the swamp in the Farming District, where they explored a partially sunken ziggurat in the center of the swamp. In the process, they freed a frog demon from a bottle. The demon quickly disappeared rather than fight its liberators. They also discovered a series catacombs beneath that lead to a lead sealed door, which they decided not to open. After returning to the Artisan District, the camp is attacked by a horde of undead. Silas died again but the remainder of the group managed to take out the rest of the undead. Many others among the Uni and the Tribe had been injured or killed. In the wake of the attack, an amnesiac woman in tattered clothing was discovered wandering on the outskirts of the district.

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The Lost Journals of Silas Velbur - Part 3
15-21 Vult, 998

What follows is a reconstruction of the timeline of events following Silus’s first journal, and the journal started by Krylyk. This is constructed mostly from the memory of the half-orc along with conversations the group has had with me. – SGBW

15 Vult, 998Silas, Krylyk and Jelpair teleport to Newthrone, the Capital of Q’barra to make some purchases that aren’t available through our supply lines here or Farshore. Lavinnia has made indications that House Orien had been discussing sending representatives from the Transportation Guild to Farshore to establish stronger supply lines to Savinth-Yhi.

The Adjunct Faculty returned this evening with a scroll to cure the feebleminded woman. Her tale was quite interesting. Not only was she feebleminded, but suffering from extreme paranoia, which made her trusting us extremely difficult.

The woman bore a tattoo on her shoulder indicating that she was associated with the Wayfarers. Her name was Juliver, a Wayfarer from Sharn. She was the companion of the famous Thunder Guide, Eando Kline. While on assignment with the Wayfarers, Kline stumbled upon a subterranean city in the far north built ages ago by a strange race of snake men. But it wasn’t a dead city; it was just asleep—and it was ready to wake up. The clues that Eando had been following had been laid by the serpentfolk themselves in the hope that some explorer would unwittingly stumble upon them and rouse them from their age-long slumber to rise and conquer an unprepared world. Kline and the Wayfarers only narrowly avoided doing just that and barely escaped with their lives.

When they reported back to the Wayfarers, Eando refused to publish his findings and discouraged anyone from retracing his steps, knowing the dangers if others should stumble upon that city and wake those creatures. For this he was ostracized from the Wayfarers.

But Kline continued his researches on his own, and discovered something of even more immediate danger—the underground city under Xen’drik was not the only such slumbering city. Another city slept as well, and was already beginning to wake on its own. Kline gathered a group of like-minded Thunder Guides and Wayfinders —such as Juliver—and they set out to stop this newly discovered threat before it could erupt.

Following Kline‘s research, we entered certain deep caves in the Tempest’s Spine mountains in eastern Xen’drik. For weeks we followed the byways of the Khyber until at last they came to this new subterranean city, called Ilmurea. Unfortunately, it was much more lively than its sister city under Xen’drik and inhabited by numerous denizens. The Yuan-ti there are on some sort of mission, under the leadership
of a powerful priest. They ambushed us shortly after we entered the city. Kline and his companions were captured. Only Juliver managed to escape.

While fleeing the Yuan-ti, Juliver found an obscure tunnel that led up and assumed it to be as good as any. The tunnel led to a chamber with a magical portal on one wall. Her pursuers were right behind her, so to keep them from following her, Juliver smashed several crystals surrounding the portal, hoping the damage would deactivate it for a time.

Things are somewhat hazy after that. She doesn’t think the snake men followed her through, but she encountered what she thought was an undead yuan-ti, a wizard, perhaps. She is unsure of what exactly happened, as she kept losing track of time and what she was doing. Eventually she remembered no more until she came to my senses just now.

16 Vult, 998 – The Adjunct Faculty followed the trail of the undead to a ruined mansion on a hill overlooking the Artisan District, as well as a door in the side of the hill where the girl’s trail lead back to. Camping within sight of the mansion, they thought best to strike at night.

17 Vult, 998 – the Adjunct Faculty attacked the undead in the basement of the mansion, killing Sozothala, the ghastly yuan-ti necromancer. After a rest, they returned to the door in the cliff and enter. After encountering some Kech and some Sabosan (bat-people), Lem, Tonk and Darkfallen fall to paranoia. Silus managed to web Lem, and charm Tonk, but all of Darkfallen’s gear, right down to hus undergarments, were found in a pile outside the vault and he was never to be seen again.

18 Vult, 998 – the Adjunct Faculty finish clearing the first vault, including fighting a Stone Golem!. They discover the paranoia is caused by a substance called Midnight Spores, a strange extraplanar fungus of unknown origin discovered and cultivated by an Olman scholar named Urschlar millennia ago. Urschlar was also the seer who predicted the cataclysm that shattered Savinth-Yhi, and encouraged the building of the vaults below the city, where people could retreat to wait out the catastrophe. Lem has begun treatment under Morwynn, and Silas has Tonk securely under charm effects.

Deep in the first vault, the group discovered a portal, as Juliver described, with the focussing crystals smashed. Runes on the portal were also inscribed on a wall-sized map of the city, indicating the locations of six other vaults within the city.

They returned to me, sharing the information they have discovered. They all agree that this information is important to be shared with the other allied factions. The Adjunct Faculty headed over towards the Merchant’s District to speak with Lavinia. On their way, they run into Zan Oldavin, the roguish halfling. formerly from the Jade Ravens, and Lt. LaFoote, from the Farshore Government. They quickly explain that the Dragonmarked houses just got a new group of reinforcements, led by a man named Ivo Haigan. Haigan immediately met with Lavinia and her staff, and executed them, assuming control. Zan and Lefty fled. As they finish their explanation, the jungle erupts and the group is attacked by Dragonmarked Merceneries.

On their way back to the Artisan District, they are greeted by a troupe of winged apes, who announce the coming of Rhuthazek, the Gorilla King.

Returning to the Tribe of the Sacred Serpent, they called a council with myself and Osond about the events. We retire to think further on this development.

19 Vult, 998 – The Adjunct Faculty headed over to Merchant’s District this morning to check in on the situation with the Dragonmarked Houses. On their way over, they noticed some Charau-ka in the nearby trees. Lem stealthed in to investigate, and noticed ten of them watching her quietly. Highly agitated by their notice of her, she quietly moved back to the group, who headed on to Lavinnia‘s headquarters on the edge of the lake. They found a hastily abandoned campsite. Inside Lavinnia’s headquarters, they found her body, as well as those of her staff, and those of a couple of the Provisional Soldiers. In a satchel on the hip of one of soldiers, they found a sealed scroll from General Rotilius addressed to SGBW.

They returned to the Artisan District only to find I had taken a contingent into the Farming District to do some research there. Upon finding me, they delivered the letter. The General’s missive expresses an interest by the Provisional Govornment in attaching the snake-men on the central island, and was asking for assistance by the Dragonmarked Houses and Morgrave University.

I ask the Adjunct Faculty to take a message back to General Rotilius, and perhaps investigate the Lhazaar Princes camp on their way over, as there has not been much activity over there. They travelled through the Temple District, with no sign of House Thurrani, and into the Residential District. Skirting the edge of the lake in attempts to keep away from the Vegepygmy, the group came upon the abandoned camp of the Lhazaar Princes. In one of the tents, they find the journal of a young boy that some of the group is familiar with; Tavey Nessk.

When they arrived at the Provisional Govornment’s headquarters, a fortress complex on a massive column of volcanic rock over 100 feet high, Private Roberts took them to General Rotilius at the citadel. He explained that they were turning their attention to the central isle, and wanted to attack the snake-men there, but with the disappearance of the other factions (Dragonmarked Houses and Lhazaar Princes most notably), it may be prudent to scout out where the others have gone.

As such, the Adjunct Faculty decided in the morning to head over to the overgrown Residential District in attempts to make contact with the Vegepygmy.

20 Vult, 998Morwynn’s tending to Lem seems to be effective; the halfling is showing signs of improvement. Shile she still does not trust anyone, the irrational paranoia she has been displaying since first entering the underground vault seems to be abating.

This morning, the [[Adjunct Faculty] head over to Residential district. They attempt to make contact with the Vegepygmy, and while, they are able to make contact and communicate, the diminutive plant creatures have no interest in aiding the group in attacking the snake-men; neither tribes have ever been hostile towards the other. When asked about the Lhazaar Princes, Silus says that he believes the translation may be flawed, but that they said “They have joined the trees.”

Continuing on through the Residential District they made a pass by the mold-covered ziggurat. They noticed a number of vegepygmy emerging from the rust-colored mold covering the shadowed part of the ziggurat, as well as wooden cages with rodents of some sort, that are unidentifiable at this distance.

Continuing on the way to the wall of the caldera behind the Residential District where the mural depicted another vault location. Searching around for several hours, they are unable to locate the entrance.

Frustrated, they move on towards the Temple District. On their way, they notice a well preserved manor on the shore of a narrow inlet from the lake. Moving over, they notice an elven female standing in the shadows of a doorway. Suspicious, they approach and hail her. She greets them and invites them in, saying her name is Egzimora a druidic hermit who has lived here for years. She offers them refreshments, which they decline.

Eventually the woman dropped her disguise, revealing herself to be a Green Hag. She doesn’t stand a chance against the fury of the Adjunct Faculty. In a cavelikechamber deeper inside the manor, they find the remains of several of the Lhazaar Princes, their gear tossed in the corner, their bodies feeding a forest of highly unusual fungi. All but one of the men are dead. One, just a boy, his chest heaved and his fungus-encrusted eyelids fluttered open, and his mouth opened in an attempt to gasp. The boy, Tavey Nessk, was found alive, but his body had been used as a host for these fungi and the mycellium had integrated into him. Whether he will live or not remains to be seen.

Deciding to head back to the camp, they skirted the back of the Temple District. On the way, they found a secluded spot that almost looked like a garden, complete with a bench, and a door into the side of the cliff. Unfortunately, they were not alone there. Three yuan-ti arcane warriors had a makeshift camp set up there. The Adjunct Faculty managed to take the snake-men out, but not without injured.

Injured and carrying the fungi-infested Tavey, the Adjunct Faculty returns to a very bad situation in the Artisan District. The Sacred Serpent guards lie dead on the approaching stairs, smoke billows from the six artisan schools, and more of the Tribe lie dead In the middle of the square, the Radiant Muse lay dead. As they survey the damage, they find one of the corpses is not quite dead. A woman, beaten and bloodied, her legs crushed under a fallen statue, explained that they came out of the morning mist and attacked, killing many and taking many with them. They took Osond, Shimmeringglimmeringbutterflywings, Keegan Shator, Kreighton, Erin and many of those of the tribe. They had been attacked by the Dragonmarked Houses.

21 Vult, 998 – Following the tracks to Ivo’s camp in the middle of the night, Lem scouts it out. The group air walks up to the second cliff above the new camp. They make camp up there for the day to survey the camp and prepare for an assault. Morwynn fashions four knotted ropes, while Silus writes a scroll, Rikkan brews up some brews, Tonk counts birds (" One….two…more than two…), while Lem and Krylyk kept an eye on the camp. They see three groups of six come in and others leave during the day. As evening falls, Tonk and Lem see two Camalutz wing over.

Waiting until night, they make their assault. Krylyk and Silus raining down death from above, while the rest drop down into the camp. Morwyn and Lem attempt to free the prisoners, while Rikkan wreaks havok with his bombs and Tonk weighs in with his sword. Finally, Ivo appears from a tent, accompanied by two Girallon. Finally, the field is taken, Ivo Haigan is captured, and the rest of the Dragonmarked merceneries are either killed or too injured to be of consequence. Interrogation of Haigan doesn’t reveal his motives. What they do reveal is a series of blackouts, which started on the way to Savinth-Yhi. He remembers nothing of arriving at the city, or anything since.

Spent, the Adjunct Faculty decide to leave him shackled and under guard for the remainder of the night. They free the captives, SGBW and the rest of the faculty from Morgrave University assist the remainder of the Tribe of the Sacred Serpent back to the Artisan District.

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The Lost Journals of Silas Velbur - Part 4
22-28 Vult, 998

22 Vult, 998 – In the morning, they go to re-question Ivo , only to find he has died in the night. A strange green fluid leaks from his nose and ears, and dribbles from the corner of his mouth. Frustrated, they travel back to the Tribe of the Sacred Serpent. Osond spends the day preparing the Muse for air burial. Frustrated with the death of their captive, they go kill the Muse’s pets in the game arena; three Basilisks.

23 Vult, 998 – With the return of the people of the Sacred Serpent, they leave the cleaning up of the Artisan District to Osond, his people, myself and the rest of the faculty of Morgrave University. The Adjunct Faculty headed back to the Temple District to the hidden garden and the door in the cliff wall. Pushing open the door and entering, Lem, Rikkan and Morwynn step back wide-eyed, looking suspiciously at the group around them. But they don’t get much chance to let the paranoia take root, as four ghostly apparitions rise from the floor. The party fights for their lives against the Spectres with several of the party succumbing to the soul-draining touch of the undead. They return to the Artisan District, after only being gone for maybe an hour, and several of them teleport off to Newthrone.

24 Vult, 998 – After returning from Q’barra, the Adjunct Faculty decide to spend some downtime recuperating and engaging the faculty in some enchanting; increasing Morwynn‘s amulet of natural armor’s protection, enchanting Krylyk‘s backup bow and adding the monstrous humanoid bane ability to his primary bow, enchanting Morwynn’s breastplate, and Silus’s cloak of resistance.

While the enchanting is going on, Morwynn decides to do something they have never done and divine the location of something to assist them with the paranoia. He receives a vision of the central island, and zooming in to an area on the western edge to a rocky pathleading down to the shore to a dark cave.

While they are at it, the faculty and I discover that Savith-Yhi was built above a yuan-ti city as a guardpost against an incursion. Might have been nice to find this information before we received the information from Juliver.

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The Lost Journals of Silas Velbur - Part 5
1-7 Zarantyr, 998

1 Zarantyr, 999 – Keegan and Kreighton finished enchanting the items the Adjunct Factulty requested. While they do, my team and I make an interesting discovery in the Farming District; The sunken ziggurat in the middle of the lake imprisons something the Ancient Olmans feared greatly. Perhaps we should ward the ziggurat until we can explore it further.

2 Zarantyr, 999 – The Adjunct Faculty returned to the Temple District to enter the vault where they encountered the Spectres. Moving into the first chamber, Lem points out an odd slot in the ceiling where she states a pendulum with a big sharp blade would swing down and cut people in half if activated. She jammed a stick in the mechanism to make sure that it doesn’t accidentally go off, and then marks off the trigger stones on the floor with her chalk.

Moving deeper, the group encountered three sarcophagi, the center filled with a red liquid. Ajax stepped up to look in it and was attacked by a hand thrusting out of the blood. A creature jumped out of the sarcophagus, a humanoid, devoid of skin, it’s musculature seeping blood, and sharp fangs jutting from it’s mouth.

Concentrating their fire on the Terkow, the group did a substantial about of damage and caused the creature to flee. Ajax took off after it, as the rest of the group cautioned him. However, the brash fighter ran off down the passage the creature ran down, following it out into another chamber. Seeing the creature running across the room, he followed, to be struck down by another two skinned creatures, Rawbones.

Under the onslaught of the two creatures, and with their front line fighter lying dead in a pool of gore, the Adjunct Faculty wisely retreated out of the vault.

3 Zarantyr, 999 – After resting and recruiting Benaiah , a stealthy Olman warrior, the Adjunct Faculty return to vault. At the first intersection, Morwynn notices a secret door which they opened. As they stood there arguing about whether they should go through the secret door, the Terkow and Rawbones assault the group. They manage to kill the two lesser undead, but the Terkow managed to critically injure Silus and drained Morwynn of vitality before running off into the jungle. As the group was triaging injuries, three undead Dire Tigers assaulted them out of the open secret door. Most of the group wisely fled, but Morwynn in her weakened state wandered into the maw of one of the abnormally fast zombie tigers. Her body was unable to be recovered at this time.

4 Zarantyr, 999 – We sat down with the Provisional Govornment today to discuss attacking the Govornment District. With four bridges into the central island, there are four routes in. The bridge from the Military District is the only one that is completely intact, with the one from the Residential District being the one in the most disrepair. That leaves the two bridges from the Merchant District.

We decided that the ground troops from the Provisional Govornment would approach from the Govornment District, the Ivory Cross would set up and move in from the northern Merchant District and establish their artillery on the bridge there, while the spellcasting forces of Morgrave University, some of whom have the ability to create magical bridges to span the crubled bridge sections, would attack from the southern Merchant District bridge.

The Adjunct Faculty would be our special forces. They would drop into the district under cover of the morning mist, alighting on top of the ziggurat on pteranodon wings. They would be tasked with securing the ziggurat, and then moving to the location we believe to be the headquarters of their cobra-headed yuan-ti leader; a domed buidling on the southeast edge of the island. Cutting off the head is they way to secure the island. All forces would build beachheads at the point where their bridges met, and from there, they would converge on the ziggurat.

5 Zarantyr, 999 – The attack went well today. While the snake-men were not surprised and gave up quite a fight. Unfortunately, the leader of the yuan-ti, actually a Rakshasa, escaped.

6 Zarantyr, 999 – With the central island mostly secured, I tasked some of the faculty with assisting the Provisional Govornment in routing out the remaining yuan-ti in the Govornment District. With the district still unsecured, I returned to the Artisan District with Kreighton, Erin, Keegan and the remaining faculty to continue our research.

The Adjunct Faculty turns their attention to the rocks at the western edge of the island, near the northernmost bridge to the Merchant District. Benaiah moved out ahead of the group, climbing down the rocks, but then suddenly disappeared. Taking action, Silus and Garrion, another new recruit, flew out over the water to see a Giant Flytrap with Benaiah‘s cloak hanging out of one of it’s traps. With a combination of magic and artillery from Krylykm the plant soon lies dead.

Moving deeper into the vault they encounter a mud filled tunnel inhabited by several Ooze Mephits. They manage to cause the mephits to retreat, and using the folding boat purchased from another member of the tribe, they punt deeper into the muck-filled vault.

Entering a octagonal chamber with a high vaulted ceiling, they spy another two mephits near the ceiling. Suddenly a large humanoid figure composed entirely of mud, rises from the ooze beneath the boat, and a stone wall grows out of the muck, closing off the exit. A fight ensues and the Shaitan is forced to retreat.

Deeper in the vault, they find the Argent Font; the artifact which enables them to break free of the grip of the paranoia induced by the Midnight Spores. As they are attempting to load the font into the boat, they are attacked by an elder Mud Elemental, which they vanquish. In a pit under the mod they discover some of the crystals needed to re-open the gate in the first vault.

7 Zarantyr, 999 – In the morning, the Adjunct Faculty teleports out of the vault and back to the Artisan District. For the better part of the day, the group rests and replentishes their supplies.

In the evening, after things have cooled off, they head over to the Temple District to speak with Chivane and Lirith. On the way they are attacked by 5 [[Jungle Mantis]es and several swarms of venomous snake. Meeting with House Thurrani, they make an alliance to support each other. As part of the alliance, Chivane would like a key that she believes may be located within Savith’s Memorial in the Artisan District.

With the alliance discussed, the Adjunct Faculty returns to the Artisan District.

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The Lost Journals of Silas Velbur - Part 6
8-13 Zarantyr, 998

8 Zarantyr, 999 – The Adjunct Faculty entered Savith’s memorial, finding a series of traps involving water. At the lowest level, they found the key that Chivane had asked for guarded by an ancient stone construct, a Tiberolith!

9 Zarantyr, 999 – I returned to the Temple District with the Adjunct Faculty to secure the treaty between our two factions. With that in place, we returned to the [Artisan District]] I think tomorrow, I will take a contingent over to the Govornment District and do some research.

10 Zarantyr, 999 – The Adjunct Faculty headed over to the Residential District. With a fresh idea of where the vault was, they soon were crawling into the overgrown cleft. Within they fought many plant creatures including a plant-like dire lion, and some sort of non-aquatic anemone. Unfortunately, Benaiah was slain by the polyp, through a combination of acid burns, poison and finally being swallowed and dissolved in the things digestive acid. While his body was retrievable, his gear was mostly destroyed.

12 Zarantyr, 999 – With Reldig Fosget, another new recruit, the Adjunct Faculty headed over to the Farming District where they investigated the sixth vault. It’s entrance a sinkhole, leading into a submergedcavern system infested with Pirhana and fey creatures called Grey Nisps, they manage to fight off the guardians and find more of the focus crystals needed to open the gate in the First Vault.

12 Zarantyr, 999 – Tonight we were invited to dine with Rhuthazek, the Gorilla King. I attended with the Adjunct Faculty. I was shocked to see them using humans as slaves and even seats as the Charau-ka, gorillas, Girallons and other apes were treated as first-class. But, when in Usaro

Rhuthazek showed inteerst in our motives for being here in the lost city. He was convinced that he could easily take over the entire city with his army, and those that followed, but offered us a chance to ‘win’ the city from him. He proposed a series of tests. A Test of Strength, a Test of Storytelling and a Test of Combat.

While he described these tests, we were fed a series of unique foods most likely delicacies amongst the apes; fresh monkey brains, a bloody soup of eyeballs and wild onions, raw hippo steak with blood sweat sauce, pan-seared botfly larvae in honey and ice-chilled vegepygmy pulp seasoned with cinnamon and roasted coffee beans. This was all served with copious amounts of sour plantain wine. While I have eaten a large variety of fare from several different cultures, and was able to try most of the dishes, I could not consume the pulp of a sentient being. Others among us, Silus and others, looked a little green after consuming the meal, however it was not to deter them from the tests.

The Test of Strength involved breaking a bundle of human femurs. Garrion easily performed this task, although he was aided by judicious use of strength-boosting spells, and some encouragement from me.

The Test of Storytelling was left to Silas, aided by some charisma- and storytelling-bosting magicks, and my encouragement.

The Test of Combat was taken up by Reldig. However, even with the prowess-building majicks and my encouragement, he was no match for the Gorilla King, who left him alive, but unconsious, his body shattered.

Rhuthazek turned to us, and congratulated us on our win. True to his promise, he said he and his followers would be gone by morning. However, he warned us, stating “You may have won the rights to the city, but the jungle surrounds the city…and jungle eats all who do not belong. You do not belong, little coastlanders! When jungle has finished with you, Rhuthazek will add your bones to his throne!”

We carried the shattered body of Reldig back to camp, and helped those who were too sick to walk on their own. Tomorrow, after the apes have left, the Adjunct Faculty will enter the seventh vault to hopefully retrieve the last of the focusing crystals needed to open the gate.

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