Storm of Chaos

Session Nineteen: The Drow

Var’Helrikk, Ilthia, Obsidian, Morg, the warlock, one of the grimlocks and Maramros climbed the rope, finding themselves again in the cavern with the underground stream. Soon they discovered though that the cavern ahead of them had changed. It was a large, open section where before they had been in the old dwarven mines. Rumours of the Underdark’s propensity for changing structure on travelers and making them lost appeared to be true.
They heard another group approaching and identified them as a band of drow. The matron, Sal’eena of the House Ja’zahl led the band and their male drow slave, addressing Var’Helrikk and asking why a lone drow male was traveling through the underdark. She asked him what house he was from and when he answered with House Var, she scoffed and told him that his house was exiled from the Underdark generations ago for cowardice. She ordered him and the rest of the party to offer her tribute otherwise she would not let them pass.
They refused. It was a bloody and deadly battle, blades clashed and spells flew through the air, the slave drow being led by the band even transformed into a drider with a word of power from Sal’eena. When the dust cleared though, it was the party who was victorious. They took Sal’eena prisoner and Var’Helrikk forced her to apologise to him before he killed her.

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They left the cavern and began to try to find their way back to Thel-Agos. After a few hundred metres of travel in almost complete darkness, they saw a figure up ahead materialise before them. It was a young woman clutching a metal sphere. She introduced herself as Alicia Dalamar and she told them she was a traveler from Ovifirth. She told them that the sphere was her sister and was cursed millennia ago to teleport once every 24 hours to a random location in all the planes. She told them that she had been trying over and over again to find a way to cure her sister, but has not been able to find one. Any time she had got close, had a lead on a contact that would be able to help her, she found herself running out of time, then not returning to that place again until well after whoever could help her had passed on. She’d even tried setting up plans so that information would be transferred down the generations, but it failed each time. She traveled with them and after a few hours, they made it to Thel-Agos again.

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Session Eighteen: The Sage Council

A vision, or a dream.
Morg saw a battle taking place outside, explosions and flames everywhere. He was unable to move, but could see straight ahead. Morg was in a tower, seemingly on the top floor. He could hear the tower being bombarded. An old man in long, silvery robes stood before him. He had aged, grey long hair and similarly long beard. The man seemed to be tinkering with something in his hands, a small metallic object. The man waved his hands around the object briefly and it began to float before him. Purple waves emitted tiny sparks as the object seemed to be absorbing the energy. The man then reached to push the object towards Morg. It began to pass through his body, becoming one with him.
“There ye go. That’s the last enchantment. I’m afraid I’ve run out of time.” The man sighed. “I wish I could have seen ye awakened. Just once. Ye’re my last work, my greatest. Morg. I spent weeks trying to think of a good name. When ye wake, ye’ll know that yer name is Morg.” The man turned, then started to walk to leave. He then turned back around and put his hands on Morg’s shoulders.
“I wish ye all the best. Ye’re going to be an incredible person, to be sure. But yer life won’t be easy… Gods. I’m such an old fool. Ye can’t even hear me… Sentimental old fool.” He sighed. “There’s nothing for it. Goodbye.”

Then a blur of images and sounds that were indecipherable made way for another scene.

An ornate marble tower with incredible architecture. There are massive columns that stretch all the way to the ceiling and this circular room is punctuated by the sound of softly trickling water from the sides. There are seven aged people, each in long robes of varying colours: deep blue, dark grey, brown, green, pale yellow, violet and maroon. A last man, the same man from before, but younger, walks into the room, coming into the centre of the circle. The others look at him with disgust. Morg can recognise Rary, the Kenku as the one in the brown robes.

The one in blue yells at the man in the centre:
“You CANNOT disband this council. You don’t have the authority!”

The man in the centre coughs and says back, fairly calmly, “I am the founder and leader of this council, and it has betrayed it’s purpose. Thus, it shall be disbanded. We are to remain neutral!”

The man in maroon says: “As a neutral force, we can do nothing to stop the evils of this world! It is necessary that we intervene as often as we can to change the world for the better!”

The others all agree and call out “Yeah!”

Mordenkainen says: “We are all powerful mages. Perhaps the most powerful in all history. We have forged spells ourselves the likes of which this world has never seen! These past few centuries have been a revolutionary increase in our understanding and mastery of magic. It is important that we wield that power with responsibility!”

The man in green says: “We have had much time to discuss this, master Mordenkainen, and we, as a council, elect to remove you as leader! It has been far too long that we have lived under the heel of your feeble rule!”

Mordenkainen: “You what!? Do you not see? I do not care about leadership! I thought that I taught all of you to temper yourselves, to keep your emotions in check!”

Grey robed man: “Think about it. We are supposed to be protectors of this world! Yet gnolls, orcs, all manner of monstrous creatures attack helpless people, destroying their lives! Children die. Hopeless, because we stand idly by and let it happen!”

Mordenkainen: “I do not relish the deaths of innocent people, but it is not our place! We were formed to defend the world from bigger threats! We must keep our vigil and steel ourselves. Before we formed this council, Tiamat invaded this world! She had thousands, maybe even millions of dragons at her command! There was death everywhere, on a scale you cannot even imagine! Bahamut and I were barely able to expel her back into the Astral Sea and defeat her dragons to restore peace. Though she may not return now, there are other evils like her, that plan to exploit our world. But they are not overt in their methods! She had millennia to gather her forces and it took her days to bring the world to its knees! And if we hand ourselves over to distractions, give up our post for even a minute, something like that may happen again! I CANNOT. I WILL NOT. I know that you have not had to deal with a threat such as her before, you feel ennui, boredom, but we are the Sage Council. I formed this council so that in the future we would not have to rely on the gods for help if something happened.”

Pale yellow robed man: You speak too much, old fool. We are powerful enough that we can do both! We can keep the world safe from ALL threats, large and small. And we will start with you. You, in all your neutrality, all your false wisdom, would hold us back from the greatness we could achieve!”

The pale yellow mage launches a fireball from his hands at Mordenkainen and the smoke clears to reveal that the silver-cloaked wizard had put up a magical shield.

Mordenkainen: “I do not want to fight you all.”

Blue robed man: “Oh, but you see, we WANT to fight you. Show us why you deserve to be leader! Show us if you’re so powerful! But I think you’re a decrepit old man who’s past his prime!”

Mordenkainen launches himself into the air, breaking open the roof of the building with magical force and then escaping into the sky. A second later, all seven of the others are in pursuit, streaming spell after spell at him. Streaks of green acid and white frost launch past Mordenkainen’s head as Morg’s vision blurs again and he awakens.

He finds himself aboard a ship in the dim darkness. He can feel the gentle rocking as he lies on his back and hears the sound of oars rowing in the water.
There are small lights all around the ship, what appears to be glowing fungi that provide very slight luminescence. A drow stood over him as he heard Ormathulak order him to go down into the underdeck and row.
Down below, a red-haired gnome named Ilthia in tattered clothes and chains clutches an oar. The rest of the party waited for Morg. Ormathulak had forced each of them to give up their weapons and armour. Eventually, Ormathulak and the drow order Morg to come with them to the gold island so they might uncover the mystery. In the meantime, the warlock uses his powers to pass insubstantial through the wall of the ship to another room below the quarterdeck, luckily finding their gear. He could not take all of it with him, but chose some supplies and brought them back with him to Obsidian and Maramros.
Meanwhile, Morg reached the golden island and found that he seemed to feel an energy resonating between him and the island. He began to let his conscious mind go and started to go into a kind of trance, moving unbidden, finding the runes on the edge of the island and activating them. Suddenly, the island began to lift high into the air, until the gold colour from the slab disappear and jumped into Morg. The island fell back to the water with a loud slap, leaving everyone, including Morg, not sure what just happened.

Returning to the ship, Morg, the drow and Ormathulak went back below deck to speak with the others (who had cleverly concealed as much as they could of their weapons). They negotiated, Ormathulak agreeing to allow them to return to the surface in exchange for their ship. He could not go with them because all they had to climb back up the waterfall was a rope and the town they went through to get into the underdark would not be hospitable to beholders, even passing through, but he asked that Ilthia and the drow go with them to ensure they would hold up their end of the deal.

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Session Seventeen: Island of Gold

The group followed the map they had discovered to a waterfall that led down into a underground sea. Cautious, they sent Morg down to investigate first and he found an island, ordinarily featureless, that became golden as he got closer to it. He heard the sound of oars rowing and decided to duck underwater and escape notice. The island maintained a slight gold hint at the edge where he had gone underwater and soon the shadow of a beholder and a few humanoid creatures lingered over the water above him. He continued to stay still, acting as though he were a statue. The beholder seemed interested and got its allies to dive down and bring him to the surface. They dragged him ashore and noticed that the island had become completely golden and covered with slight runes around the edges as he reached the centre. A drow came ashore as well, speaking to the beholder about whether they should take the ‘statue’ apart and try to understand how it’s making the island change. Finally reaching the limit of their caution, the rest of the party jumped down into the water as Morg activated his jade statuette of a tri-horn behemoth and tried to fight his way out. The beholder had one more ally though, an owlbear that had been chained up.

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Though his allies had come to his rescue, Morg was clearly in trouble. The beholder shot eye rays at the group who struggled to swim ashore quickly. Though they dodged a few of them, it was too much for them when the drow pulled out his axe and charged them. The drow was surprised to find that Obsidian almost took him out of the fight even fighting in the water. Maramros killed the other humanoid creatures that served the beholder with his potent magic while the warlock threw spell after forbidden spell at the beholder. The air was thick with tension as it seemed that the party might not survive. The beholder turned them all to stone, one by one, but Obsidian resisted and broke free. She decided whether to desperately try to fight her way out or to bide her time. She called for parlay and the beholder took them aboard it’s ship, the Death’s Gaze as crew members.

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Session Sixteen: Thel-Agos

The group sailed north to Ongondalos, finding that the island was barren, covered in rocky crags. A bit of exploration revealed that there was a small bay however that housed a cave that lead deep into the earth. They moored their ship and made their way down. They found an underground city ruled by minotaur named Thel-Agos. They figured that these tunnels must be the maze and they could ask people about the gold tablet. They did not find any leads on the tablet, but found that the city had a strong mining industry. They bought a map of the local surrounding area and decided to head to the Lost Mines.

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Thel-Agos
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Ongondalos local map
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Map key:
1. Thel-Agos
2.The Chamber of Eyes
3.Bloodreaver Hideout
4.The Shining Road
5.Avenue of Glory
6.The Road of Shadows
7.The Horned Hold
8.Houses of Silence
9.The Deep Stair
10.The Well of Demons
11.Cisterns
12.Entrance
13.The Road of Lanterns
14.Hall of the Broken Dragon
15.Ruined Tower
16.Palace of Zaamdul

When they reached the mines, they found a group of smelly rock-lizard creatures which attacked them. They managed to defeat the creatures easily enough, but decided to avoid further conflict when they saw another creature skulking in the dark. They found a map that seemed to mark a place of treasure nearby and decided to follow it.

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Session Fifteen: Ikawu

The Protectors of Etherium were led by a dragonborn named Providence. They seem to be a religious group, but instead of focusing on a deity, they were reverent of history. They wanted to protect the past and catalogue history for the future. They told Morg that they had been tracking Rary for some time and he had led them here. He was famously trying to pursue Mordenkainen’s work and they had hoped he would find it so they could protect it. They asked Morg to follow them to Oldaka, where they had a temple for such artifacts. He declined, and so they instead decided to provide him with protection and aid on the condition that he would return to them someday. The group accepted their help, receiving an Exodus Knife and a ship from them.

The group decided to head northwest to Ikawu, but it was slow travel with only a few people to crew a ship. They came upon a strange city which rose from the sea as they passed it. It turned out to be a city of green-skinned aquatic creatures which came to the surface once every twenty years for a meeting with Marid. The blue-skinned giant Marid arrived shortly, their pharaoh thinking that the group had come as observers of the ceremony. They decided to go along with it and watch the ceremony. They offered a gift to the pharaoh but he did not find it satisfactory and seemed offended. They all entered the shell-covered city and entered a great hall where the meeting formally took place. The Marid and the green creatures seemed to be making a kind of deal, which the group discovered meant that they could move their underwater city at will in exchange for their obedience. They group eventually found a gift they thought would be worthy of the pharaoh and he was pleased with it. He gave them a boon, enabling their ship to be aided by the waves beneath it (meaning they could pilot it with a minimal crew).

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They departed the city, which sank again beneath the waves. Northwest they sailed, soon arriving in Ikawu. The island was mostly uninhabited, covered with thick bamboo forest. Eventually though, they met the hermit who lived there, who told them his name was Ikawu. After a frustrating conversation they managed to discover an obelisk that resided in a nearby cave, unlocking some of Morg’s magical barriers created by Mordenkainen. Ikawu decided to train Morg and Obsidian in martial arts if they could prove themselves. He told them to go to an island named Ongondalos and find a gold tablet in the maze and bring it back to him. They departed soon after.

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Session Fourteen: Rary

The group stayed the night to rest after the werewolf attack. The next day they heard rumours about a sea serpent that had apparently washed ashore. Since they had to wait a few hours for their ship to depart, they decided to investigate. They discovered the serpent, which looked as if made from bone, but did not appear to be alive.
They heard a noise from behind them, which turned out to be a voice. It belonged to a kenku named Rary, who claimed to have been searching for Morg, the final creation of Mordenkainen. He told them that he had been lucky to find them, overhearing Marble whining about them in Xin-Tijh some time ago.
He told them that he was a remarkable wizard, once a companion of Mordenkainen himself, but now he would prove himself stronger than Mordenkainen by destroying his last work! He brought the serpent lying on the beach to life and conjured a fire servant to assist him.

Morg was swallowed by the sea serpent, but retaliated by summoning his trihorn behemoth inside the creature, blowing out its sides and injuring it severely. Meanwhile, Obsidian and the Warlock took on Rary, fighting to defend themselves.

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When they defeated Rary, they broke his legs and arms. They took his captive and returned to the town to find a group of dragonborn known as the Protectors of Etherium who wished to speak with Morg.

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Session Thirteen: Escape from the Elemental Chaos

The group headed towards Fumeran’s Palace, having completed their mission for him. They discovered he was not there, and spoke to an Azer about him briefly. They then discovered that he was disguised magically as that Azer and he was testing their loyalty. As reward, he offered Morg and Obsidian his patronage. He asked them all to be his agents in the Isles and gave them a companion who would fight alongside them. Fumeran provided them with a portal back to the city of Xin-Tijh, where they discovered that the other pirates had left when the Dragonborn Emperor’s palace disappeared suddenly.

The party acquired the services of a local dragonborn captain to catch up with the pirates, but the ship only went as far as Osae.

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In Osae, they discovered a farming community. The next ship sailing was going to be the next day, so they stayed the night. They soon realised that the town had been attacked regularly at night by werewolves, and evacuated the small town to the ship. The werewolves gave pursuit however and only quick thinking and quick reflexes saved them from becoming the next victims of the beasts. Morg summoned his trihorn behemoth, managing to knock the werewolves into the water and scaring them away, for now.

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Session Twelve: Sea of Fire
The party investigates the City of Brass and completes a task for Fumeran.

Now in the Elemental Chaos, the group decided to head to Fumeran’s palace to seek a way home. With Alhezid as their guide, they made their way through the City of Brass with minimal danger, finally reaching the palace. With a bit of dealing, they managed to buy their way home from Fumeran with a task they could complete for him. They were asked to head to the Sea of Fire and destroy a vessel that carried a cargo for a rival Efreet. Fumeran granted them a protection against fire so that they could traverse the magma. They made their way to the city docks and were provided a small rowboat. Some way out they encountered a creature swimming in the magma that attacked them.

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They destroyed the creature with some difficulty and began to search again for the vessel. Eventually they spotted a ship with a crew of Azer aboard that had the markings of Abdul-Azim Abassi, the Efreeti Sultan on the side. They moved close to the vessel then jumped it, defeating the crew. The Azer panicked, releasing a small blue slaad upon them in desperation. The party killed the slaad, but not before it infected one of them with its terrible phage. The group took what they wanted from the ship’s cargo then destroyed the rest. They sailed both vessels backs to the docks to report back to Fumeran about their success and find a cure for the slaadi infection.

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Session Eleven: Death of an Emperor
The group breaks into the palace, steals the treasure and kills the dragonborn emperor, but their escape may have been thwarted.

The group headed over towards the palace to find a protest going at the entrance to the building over city taxes. Seeking easier entrance, they riled up the crowd. The crowd grew uncontrollable, pushing their way bit by bit into the palace. The palace guards did their best to hold back the protestors, but did not have the numbers they needed. When the crowd had pressed their way halfway through the palace, the royal wizard appeared. He cast some kind of unusual spell that made the entire palace shake. Then he fled. The party realised that they could smell sulfur, but decided to continue further into the palace. The crowd roared its way into the throne room and the party slipped away from the crowd, heading upstairs.

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Obsidian made her way upstairs first, confronting the royal wizard as he attempted to halt her progress. After a short time, Maramros and Morg joined her upstairs. They fought against palace guards as they flooded the top floor, dispatching the royal wizard with haste. Maramros ventured further into the rooms on the top floor, finding the Empress and her children huddled together. He attempted to calm them first, but Obsidian came into the room disguised as a palace guard and was more successful.

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Morg caught up to them after defeating a room full of guards and together they led the Empress and her children through the floor, asking her to show them to where the Emperor was so they could ensure he was safe.
Morg and Maramros worked together to bar the entrances to the rooms they passed through, confounding the newly arriving guards at every turn.
The group found the Emperor hiding inside a panic room past the slave quarters with a few guards. Morg and Maramros kept their distance while Obsidian went in with the Empress.
Hearing more guards arriving, Morg went to one of the doors he had barred and threw aside the table with absolute ease, opening the door for Maramros. He then unleashed a blast of flame that burnt nearly everyone in the hallway to a crisp.

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Meanwhile, Obsidian questioned the Emperor about his treasure, telling him that if she knew where it was she could prevent it from being stolen if the crowd made its way upstairs. When he told her it was in a secret compartment under his bed, she attempted to attack the Emperor, but the Empress had quick reflexes and caught her dagger hand before it could kill him. She tried to convince the woman that her husband had been replaced with an imposter, but she would not believe her. Eventually, she broke away from the Empress and stabbed the Dragonborn Emperor deep.
He was poisoned by her attack, but managed to keep on his feet. He attempted to fight back by breathing golden flames at Obsidian, but she managed to stab him again, this time taking him in the neck. He died immediately and Obsidian threw her blade aside, severing his artery and splattering the Empress and her children with blood.

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They headed to the bedroom, finding quickly the secret chamber and took the treasure. They wasted no time escaping from the palace, making their way as quickly as possible to leave. When they reached the front, they were bewildered to find that the palace was no longer in the city of Xin-Tijh. Alhezid, Maramros’ familiar, told them this was the Elemental Chaos and across the way they could see the City of Brass. It appeared that the royal wizard had transported the palace here in the wake of the emergency.

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Session Ten Point Five: The Past
Two flashbacks reveal a bit of Morg and Maramros' past.

This session was a flashback to two major events that happened to Morg and Maramros.

Morg’s flashback was to his time with the monks of Mnelasi who, upon finding him in the snow, took him in. He could not speak, but slowly he began to learn by listening to the monks and through their teachings. He noticed after some time staying with them that they practiced daily rituals that involved strange movements and even brief bouts of controlled fighting. He was interested, and joined them. The monks taught him everything they could about their martial arts over the next few weeks. Morg became quite skilled at fighting quickly. One day, a wyvern and it’s babies came to attack the monk village, almost killing everyone living there. Morg fought valiantly, but was not strong enough yet to defeat the creature. He lost consciousness fighting it, but a strange thing happened. He felt a power within him gathering and the energy was expelled in a massive blast that knocked the creature unconscious. He awoke the monks, who remarked that he must have some kind of magical power locked away inside him. Eventually, Morg decided to leave the monks to search for clues about his creator and why he was made.

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Maramros’ flashback was to a task he was given whilst in the city of Xin-Tijh not too long ago. Alhezid had returned on his daily visit to the Elemental Chaos with the spells that Maramros needed but had other news as well. Fumeran, Maramros’ benefactor had requested that he find and destroy a group who were trafficking something illegal beneath the city. Al-hezid told Maramros that the Efreeti competed for power in the mortal realm through their agents (in this case, Maramros) and having domination in an area was incredibly useful to them. Maramros accepted the task and headed under the city as quickly as he could. After a brief search, he uncovered a cavern that was host to a small storage room. Maramros carefully snuck up to it in the dimly-lit cavern to find that it was locked. After a short bout of attacking the door, he had weakened the wood enough to bash through it with his shoulder. Inside the room he found crates and barrels containing a fine powder substance he recognised as Dla’iss dust, a narcotic that was illegal in most places. He decided to destroy the crates and lit the whole building on fire. As he left the building, he heard noises coming from across the cavern and discovered that there were several dragonborn coming down a stairwell. They bickered about their task of moving the heavy crates of the dust until Maramros acted. He sent over Alhezid
to fight them, utilising his familiar’s ability to cast a single spell to engulf the dragonborn in flames. It wasn’t long before there was nothing left of them but ashes and Maramros destroyed the rest of the crates. Alhezid revealed to Maramros that he knew the name of the efreet that the dragonborn ultimately worked for: Abdul-Azim Abassi.

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