Blood of the Dead Gods

Pit Stop

With the party finally together again, they proceed deeper into the pass. Wedgd into a side door, they find the body of Flinka’s sister, as well as the spirit of the dwarf child Dori, who thanks them and fades away.

Nas overhears several orcs arguing over spoils, allowing her and Finch to surprise them, cutting them down before they can raise an alarm. The party cautiously descends a stone staircase lined with friezes, each depicting a dwarven battle with what Cale determines is an earth titan. In each vignette, a piece of the titan is cut away: an eye, a rib, its heart, and a giant stone hand, exactly like the one they already have in their possession.

The stairway ends in a large, high-ceilinged cavern ringed with orcish archers. They face the center of the cavern, which houses a large pit, four glowing magic circles, and a large, brutish ogre being reprimanded by a cloaked figure in a troll mask.

The party surprises them, hacking apart two of the archers before they can respond. Cale and Johan charge the cloaked figure, finding that each of the magic circles provides a different benefit, though it grants the same powers to their enemies.

The masked shaman orders the ogre to attack and begins hurling spells, but he is quickly laid low. Other archers appear from the shadows and skewer the party with volley after volley.

Finch pulls the earth titan’s hand from his cloak and binds the ogre to his will. He commands it to drop its weapons and leap into the deep pit, which it does, with relish. A loud thud let’s them know it’s not bottomless. As they circle the pit to approach the archers, the masked figure suddenly stands up, his wounds healing before their eyes. Cale runs him through with his sword and rips off the mask.

The earth shakes, throwing everyone to the floor, and for a while the battle continues on hands and knees. The shaman rises yet again, declaiming, “The magic is not in the mask, but in the wearer!” and is put down yet again before Alek crawls over to him, lights a torch, and stabs it into the shaman’s eye. He lights like a pyre, burning away to ash in seconds.

Meanwhile, the archers take up advantageous positions, and the ogre climbs out of the pit. Finch uses the strength of the hand to push the ogre back into the pit, but is knocked in after him by an archer. Several tense seconds pass as they trade blows in the dark. Then the shaman’s voice rings out again. “You fool! Stop hitting me and get us out of this pit!”

The ogre complies, and the rest of the party sees Finch on his shoulder, but his arms are mottled green, like a troll’s. A few seconds later and he seems normal again, hopping off the ogre’s back and telling everyone to finish off the brute. The ogre goes down, and the archer’s finally succumb to steel and fire.

Alek is very suspicious of what happened in the pit, questioning Finch but receiving no answers. Before it escalates to a fight, they hear dwarven chanting and orcish battle cries.

They rush down a hall to find a cadre of Shadowed Chain cultists engaged in a protective ritual as a horde of orcs lays siege to their position. The party routs the orcs, though Alek takes a few potshots at Finch, and all is calm for now.

Loot
bunch of gold and platinum
Bracers of Archery

Comments

Ekrule

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