Karameikos

Journey to the Blight Swamp

At the tavern in Knosht, there is much pondering and discussion around the use of something (barrels of quicklime?) to help neutralize Falorax’s acid. The debate is disrupted by the arrival of a haughty Glantrian woman who appears via portal, announcing herself as Francisca. Francisca says she has been sent by the Glantrian Ambassador to assist the adventurers.

Whilst Althea sh*t stirs gleefully, Francisca introduces and elderly man as Bób, as the greatest Wizard in all Glaantri. The wizened Wizard apparently sensed trouble with a linked portal Ozzy was building which raised the alarm as to Ozzie’s demise and prompted the Ambassador’s mission of help. Whilst the other ponder how happy the-powers-that-be may be to discover Ozzie was assisting a foreign power to have a backdoor into Karameikos, Tol notices that the beer isn’t quite up to its usual standard. The innkeeper agrees, saying that he just hasn’t been able to brew it the same lately…

Moldain 25th Thaumont
In the morning Francisca summons a convocation of celestial Eagles to fly the party to rendezvous with Memnon at Eltan’s Spring. There, evidence of the dragon attack and the machinations of the Black Eagle Barony are evident in the scorched partially-constructed temple, the razed smithy and some burnt-out homesteads. They swiftly reunite with a very somber Cleric (well, he has just lost his father..?) and within the hour, Memnon is good to go, delivering a rousing oratory to the villagers (natural 20!) before departing, firing them up to help see them through the present difficulties in his absence. The cleric has diverted funds from the construction of the temple to rebuild the destroyed smithy and homesteads. Mhorgash has made his excuse and left earlier in the day, along with the Black Eagle Barony guardsmen, making something of a mockery of the apparent thirst for vengeance displayed yesterday for his fallen brother.

On the approach to Threshold, the party is intercepted by an Order of the Griffon patrol, but all is well after a friendly conversation. Later in the day the convocation reaches Luln, causing something of a commotion as it lands. The excitement soon fades and the adventurers settle down in the tavern for the night.

Moldain 25th Thaumont
An early morning visit to the local alchemist yields nothing of any value. Francisca summons the convocation of eagles and once more the adventurers take flight.

Arriving over the Blight Swamp, visibility is low due to the mists rising from the morass. Dropping lower and passing over the Caymen village, there are no fires burning, nor any signs of movement. The water level in the swamp has noticeably risen too.

Blight swamp

Shortly, the convocation arrives at what Tol remembers as being the site of Falorax’s lair. What are now four islands sit around the pool from which Falorax emerged. The air is cold and clammy with an acrid smell of dying vegetation. Any trees and vegetation on the islands are shriveled and blackened. The party puts their plan into action. Memnon and Althea stand guard on the largest island, whilst Fran circles the area on her eagle. Switch dons his Cap of Water Breathing as he and Tol prepare to dive into the pool and attempt to locate the dragon’s lair.

Diving, they discover a noticeable drop off in the centre of the pool –almost like a flooded tower. Descending, they encounter several openings on the sides. They explore one together, the acrid water stinging their eyes and throats and Tol’s gills, eventually coming out at the surface of the swamp, some distance away from where they set off. Summoning their eagles, they return to the pool.

The duo dive again, this time exploring separate shafts. Tol ends up back at the surface of the swamp. Switch swims down and down to a silt-choked curve in what turns out to be the u bend of a shaft. Rising, he eventually bangs his head on a rock ceiling. He can sense a wider space around him, but see little, despite the sun rod, and he is slowly burning from the acidic water. He returns to the rest of the group, picking up a few coins from the silt at the bottom of the shaft as he passes.

Upon hearing his report, all agree that the journey switch has just undertaken is most likely to lead to the Falorax’s lair. Tol communes with nature (Natural 20!) and receives answers to several questions:
• Yes, there is an entrance to a sub-aquatic chamber below this island
• It contains air
• The entrance is via this pool
• Falorax is not currently there
Fran protects Tol from acid damage with a spell and the ranger sets off by himself to explore further.

As the others wait on the island, Fran nervously passes the time studying the magical emanations she senses in this location. Focusing her mind, she realises what she is sensing is old magic. Far older than any she has experienced before…

Tol makes it to the bottom of the u bend, pocketing some coins himself and finding many bones in the silt too. Further up the shaft, he spies barrels, crates and other non degradable items stashed in alcoves. Spying an opening near the ceiling of the shaft, he passes through and emerges into a pocket of air. Before him lies a treasure trove of items, including an immediately recognisable ‘horn of plenty’ that formerly belonged to the Heroes of Dymrak!

Topside, any lingering doubt as to the nature of the lair is obliterated, as a furious voice booms “INTRUDERS!!!” and Falorax descends towards the island, spitting acid. Switch heroically leaps past his eagle and into the swamp (Natural 1!), Memnon goes diabolic and a startled Francisca is able to slow the dragon with her magics. This doesn’t stop him from biting Althea, although her fury shakes the earth in return, wounding the beast. Memnon’s Lance of Faith arcs past Falorax, as behind the dragon, Switch clambers onto his eagle and draws his sword. The third conflict begins..!

Falorax in swamp

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