Summit Apocalypse

Druids Gathering at Scarlet Moon Hall
Come feel the burn

Things got hot, but cooled off eventually.

Breaking and Entering at the Sacred Stone Monastery
Brazen or Sneaky? Maybe decide

As Harburk and the rest of the butchers start putting things in order in Red Larch, Zoltar offers to help with the investigation.  The rest of the party gets started on investigating the Sacred Stone Monastery.  First thing, Alfar wants to go compare notes with Thurl Merosska at Feathergale Spire.  After hearing about the interference of a suspected Earth cultist in Red Larch, Thurl offers the team the use of aerial mounts to carry them to the monastery.  Alfar has to remind Thurl that he is too large to ride a hippogriff.  Thurl smiles and says is he is half the man that he looks, he could tame a mount that none of the Feathergale Knights have been able to.  They had captured the recently deceased manticore's mate and only needed convincing.  

Alfar makes a contract with the manticore, who agrees to bear Alfar to the Monastery and back if released from imprisonment.  Using directions provided by Thurl Merosska, the party quickly finds its way to the Sacred Stone Monastery.  The manticore and hippogriffs land nearby and remain hidden.  From the skies, the party had seen a stone building with some openings above, one of which is a huge walled garden.

The party approached directly at first and were greeted at the front door by a monk wearing a golden face mask and robes.  They asked for food and water as they were weary travelers.  The monk soon returned though, dropping a small pile of supplies in front of them.  The party asked if they could come inside and rest, but the monk just turned and closed the door.  The party went back out of sight and waited until nightfall.  Under the cover of night, they broke into the walled garden and soon found themselves facing off against 

The Believers
w/ special guests, The Bringers of Woe

This is the story of how the heroes of Evermist brought to light the rotten underbelly of Red Larch.  Why must the underbelly always be rotten?

The gang had returned to their quarters at The Swinging Sword and decided that the following day, they'd infiltrate the Believers' hideout to find out what was really going on there.  Zoltar found Grund and let him know he'd have to make a choice between the Believers and the Heroes of Evermist.  Grund chose his best buddy Zoltar and agreed to give the party access.
Previously, Zoltar had really only seen the cage trap and a dwarven statue.  This time, the full party took a different passage and quickly came upon a room with a few decaying bodies within.  Each of the bodies had a symbol cut into the forehead deep enough to mark the skull and were being fed upon by rats.

In the next room, they found a rock, which hovered in the center of the room.  And in the next, the dwarven statue that Zoltar had caught a glimpse of before.   The statue is labeled as a Petrified Ironstar dwarf and is surrounded by a ring of gravel and offerings that have been left behind at the base of the statue.  Mila knicked a dagger with the name "Reszur" graven into the pommel.  When speaking the name, the blade glows and provides dim light in a 10-foot radius until the name is said again.  As the party continue their investigations, they are interrupted by a group of six warriors identifying themselves as the Bringers of Woe.  Their armor bore the same symbol as had been cut into the corpses' skulls. They were soon defeated by the heroes.

After the battle, the party find and question Baragustas, one of the Believers who is unarmed and afraid.  He begs them not to disturb the rocks in the Chamber of Moving Stones lest they bring down the wrath of the Delvers.  He explains that from time to time, the great stones change position when no one is watching and show signs of coming danger and judgement.  Under great intimidation, he also tells of the Believers' recent involvement with the earth priests who have helped to translate the stones movements.  Larrakh is the name of the priest that is given and Baragustas claims he doesn't know of any murders or corpses.  The group tie him up and prepare to enter the Chamber of Moving Stones.

Once inside, they find, surely enough, a bunch of stone slabs laying on the floor.  They also find Larrakh, who they question.  He did not part with much information and was subsequently killed when he tried to escape.  He was carrying a four Mirabar trade bars, a very distinctive currency.

After the fighting is done, the party collect Baragustas and their witness Grund and bring them down to the butcher to tell Harburk (town constable) what is going on.  They also round up a few other Believers and set the wheels of justice in motion.

Next on the agenda will be a visit to the Sacred Stone Monastery to investigate the earth priests.


Sumber Hills Investigation
Exploring Red Larch and the surrounding hills

After returning to the Red Larch and getting some rest, the party spent the day in town looking around.  It was market day and everyone went down to the market area to check it out.  Grund was working on selling his pickles but Zoltar discovered that Grund was working for a secret society as well, and convinced him to take him on a tour of his other workplace here in town.  Brunhilde and the rest of the gang took over the pickle stand while Zoltar and Grund went for a walk.

Grund showed Zoltar to an underground complex that runs between Waelvur's Wagonworks and the Mellikho Stoneworks.  This is the lair of the Believers, a group of businessmen in town who are aware of the supernatural properties of the complex and, according to Grund's minimal understandings, try to run the town from the behind the scenes.  While there, Zoltar was shown an elaborate cage trap where Grund usually stood guard and found a young child, Braelen,  weighted down by stones as punishment from his father, Rothar Haverhand.  He was being punished for failing to deliver a message to Ilmeth Waelvur.  Zoltar felt it best to leave the boy undisturbed and he and Grund returned to the pickle stand where the rest of the party had set a sales record on the day.  Zoltar did manage to glean that Baragustas Harbuckler, Marlandro Gaelkur and Ilmeth Waelvur are all Believers and that they guard the Moving Stones (levitating stones in a cave) that a priest uses to divine the future.  The levitating stones are believed to be related to the Delvers, ancient dwarves entombed in the caverns overseeing these ancient mysteries.  Also, Believer activity has increased since the arrival of an Earth Priest several months ago.

That night, the party continued to keep their ears open at the Swinging Sword as well as some of the less reputable joints in town, like The Helm at Highsun where the locals get drunk, and Gaelkur's, where not only can you get a drink, but also a haircut, the occasional magical item of interest and drugs.  Here the heavy drinkers of the heroes of Evermist heard from the sheperd, Larmon Greenboot, about some shallow graves that had recently appeared nearby in the Sumber Hills.  Rumors were also heard throughout town of a missing delegation from Mirabar.  They were supposedly a large, well-armed party, but nowhere to be found.  The last place they were seen was Beliard.  

The following morning, the party set out to examine the graves, accompanied by Larmon.  They exhumed the graves and found three humans, a woman wearing a symbol of Mirabar, a man in stony armor and black cloak, and a man in a white robe with black feathers on it.  There was also a dwarf wearing robes.  Tracks indicate a battle, with arrows and javelins being found.  A few miles to the north, a large spire reaches into the air surrounded by birds.  Larmon says that is Feathergale Spire, a hunting club of some knights from Waterdeep.  The party decide to head that way to see if someone there had perhaps seen something.


On the way, two ankhegs attacked and were pretty easily defeated.  When reaching Feathergale Spire, the party was greeted kindly at the gatehouse by Savra Belabranta, and escorted to the pinnacle of the tower to meet Thurl Merosska.  While some are talking to Thurl, Brayowen sneaks a peek through a telescope mounted at the edge of the tower but pointed downward.  She glimpses a hooded figure entering a concealed passage across the valley. Thurl is the leader of the Feathergale Knights who are indeed an aerial hunting society, riding and hunting flying mounts for sport and excitement.  After sharing stories over dinner, the party is invited to a manticore hunt and provided mounts.  Alfar must decline as he is too large to ride a hippogriff.  The rest of the party give it a whirl and Adri ends up killing the manticore, taking the prize of Thurl's (non-magical) ring.  

Thurl, suitably impressed with the party, offers them some information about some reclusive monks of the Sacred Stone Monastery.  She believes that they may have evil intentions and perhaps were responsible for the graves that the party had found.  She enlists their aid in investigating the group.  As the party was leaving, Savra was very excited that they had all been so successful and made such a good impression on Thurl.  Savra encouraged them to return so that they could help the Feathergale Knights to "master elemental air to annhilate Waterdeeps enemies", a strange turn of phrase from a member of a hunting club. 

Everyone made it back to Red Larch without further incident.  

The Plague of DJ Lance Rock
Making Friends in Red Larch

After a long journey from the South, the party arrives in Red Larch and are greeted at The Swinging Sword, by the owner, Kaylessa.  She offers to treat them to dinner in exchange for tales from the road.  Brayowen the elf and her wolf companion Chippy make themselves comfortable.  Brunhilde, a fighter sits next to them and are joined by Mila and Zoltar, a roguish halfing and tiefling warlock, respectively.  Kaylessa also seats a new traveler at their table, Alfar Norling.  Alfar is a literal giant of a man but also a pious fighter for Ulaa,  goddess of Hills, Mountains, and Gemstones.  Mila, by chance, is also spotted by her cousin Leo, who happens to be in town.   He also sits at the table.

After briefly sharing their backgrounds with each other (but none of their secrets) Kaylessa asks if they've heard of the troubles in the Dessarin Valley.  More bandits than usual on the road, strange unseasonable fogs, hot winds sweeping down out of the usually cold West.  Lightning blasts on clear days.  She believes is caused by fell magic, emanating from an evil presence at Lance Rock.  She offers the group 50 gp to investigate, which they accept after initially sniffing at the paltry (?) sum.

After dinner, they explore town a bit.  Alfar goes to the Allfaiths Shrine next to the inn and meets Imdarr Relvaunder, priest of Tempus.  Zoltar, Mila and Brunhilde head across the street to the seedier Helm at Highsun for more drinks.  Zoltar is befriended by Grund, the half-orc pickler who plies his trade near the market area.  Brayowen purchased some silvered daggers from Feng Ironhead, a much savvier half-orc than the pickler, who runs Ironhead Arms in the middle of town.  Brunhilde flirted with the boys at the bar, but the night passed without incident.  Leonardo disappeared after dinner.

The following morning, as they were preparing to leave for Lance Rock, some children in town convince them to remove a freaky skull near the path to the swimming hole.  Upon investigating, they find a skull pierced through the eye with an arrow.  The arrow had a message wrapped around it.  Alfar removed the arrow and skull from the tree, burying them nearby.  The message, actually written on some type of dried skin:

The Last Laugh
You'll be next!

Continuing on to Lance Rock, a huge spike of granite sticking out of the ground, they find another sign warning them away from a trail leading to a cave mouth.  It was signed by the Lord of Lance Rock and tells of a disfiguring plague.

Journeying through the cave complex, they battled zombies, skeletons, ghouls, maybe even a ghast. Mila hid and attacked from cover.  Chippy the wolf leapt to attack the ghouls, but was temporarily paralyzed by their attacks.  Alfar and Brunhilde leapt into battle, swords swinging.  Zoltar tossed Eldritch Blasts from a distance, yelling out words of encouragement, close to the exit. Nobody was really an expert on undead, though Zoltar claims to have seen the walking dead before.  Eventually, they came upon Oreioth, the Lord of Lance Rock and his troupe of performing zombies.  After a relatively quick battle, the assorted undead in the room were laid to rest and Oreioth was slain.


Mila took a glowing crystal orb that was atop a cone of severed hands and beneath a holographic sigil.  When she took the globe, the symbol faded away.  She also recovered a wand from the body of Oreioth.  With that, the party returned to town to discuss their next moves.



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