The party takes a 1-hour short rest in the pipes of the Derro Citadel….and takes too long. Enough time to worry Edith enough to send Orrin after the party.
OH HAI, ORRIN (Join the party!)
Now a party of five, they discover that they need a FIFTH vial of demon blood to enter the demi-plane.
- Edith convinces the Stone speakers to transport Orrin to the party’s location! So close in fact that he manages to emerge in the WATER (or whatever it is) filled with Devil Fish!
- Of course, now that means we need FIVE vials of demon blood….and not four.
- When tracking our way back through the pipes, the party discovers a magic Sarcophagus! Against better judgment, we open it (by spilling our blood on it)
- Upon opening…..THE HOT WIND FROM GREDA’S PAST EMERGES!
- Reiker is downed! (once)
- The party fights in magical darkness, frantically, and it is not clear whether it’s Orrin’s vicious mockery (“Bansee’s”…..hah!), Zazz closing the Sarcophagus, or Greda fighting with the flag that surely saved her back when her entire platoon was massacred, but these demons are taken down swiftly.
- +1 demon blood!
Back to the Door of the Demi-Plane:
- Foolishly, Orrin asks how to open the door (Really, you should know better) only to have Zazz show him how by opening it and walking through himself. Reiker quickly chases after him and the others regretfully follow after him.
- Immediately our heroes are set upon by a couple of Homunculi (aka “two homunculus’s”) and a Derro witch.
- The beasts and Derro are slain, dropping a key to a door and not much else.
- We find the Derro’s lab (empty – hurray!) and loot it, discovering a demon statue – SOMETHING MORE THERE THAN MEETS THE EYE?
Since we hear rushing water, we journey upwards to a river. Reiker’s superior dark vision shows us enemy encounters on all paths. But Zazz luckily prepared “Water-walking” today and opens a path that was not open to us before. We walk along the river’s path and up a wall – discovering a (secret?) passage – AND THE FINAL BOSS FIGHT.
With monsters dissected, yet somehow alive, chained to work tables, the Derror Hierarch beckons us towards him, almost gleeful with the ways he plans to kill us. He recognizes Zazz in his “Wizard of Thay” garb and regards him with the respect it deserves. The others, though…..!
A pitched battle ensues between Zazz and the Hierarch, and Reiker is downed (twice), while Merrick, Orrin, and Greda are mostly ignored. Greda, though, will not be ignored as she finally has a lead on what killed her platoon. She rushes the Hierarch, demanding an answer with each blow:
The Hiearch responds admist the volley of blows: “Those are Vogo’s** Wardens….!”
Greda’s unrelenting barrage, along with the mercy killings of the demons chained to the tables, makes quick work of the Hierarch, but not before landing a killing blow of the Exalted Ulzazz Zazz Saviux, Grand Master Sage of the Arcane and Scroll of the Queen (may he rest in peace).
This is terrible. Zazz is dead. WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?? (To be continued)
**NOTE – Vogo, we discovered, was a Derro who didn’t believe in the sacrificing and experimenting on monsters and Duergar.