Origins of Magic

So Close, but Still So Far.

Day 3

The following morning the party sets out after the the members of Marcaus’ army who caused such a ruckus the night before. They follow their trail for only a short whil until they overhear the sounds of battle in the distant forest. Following the sounds the party soon find Marcaus’ men in a heated battle with one of King Rayor‘s battalions. Remembering Gregor’s advice the party decides it best to not get involved into the battle.

Unfortunately it is clear to notice that the battle is taking palce in front of a small shack, and through the open fourth wall they can clearly see that the archmage has been tied up inside. They also notice a small warding circle on the ground around the archmage. Kylin identifies this to be an explosive trap that will burst if anyone crosses over it.

They soon realize that the archmage is their only true way to find Marcaus and regardless of what they may want to do, they must rush in and free the archmage before either group takes him away. Edward Van Nelah quickley begtins devizing a battle plan, but in the minutes it takes him to do so, Urd grows impatient. Unbeknownced to the party Urd wildshapes into a velociraptor and rushes after Marcaus’ men.

The rest of the party moves in a panic to assist Urd. Edward finds the leader of King Rayor’s men and attempts to convinve him that they are here to help him. Although Edward gets no response from their leader, it is clear he has convinced the lower members of the battalion, as well as Heinrich, that they are there for the full purpose of serving the king’s orders.

After the battle, none of the King’s men are felled and they immediatly form a line in front of the shack, preventing the party from entering. Their leader stands behind them and reveals himself to be Sir Gareth, the general of King Rayor’s army. He thanks you for your help but then tells you to vacate this istant.

Edward, ever the sweet talker, manages to convince Sir Gareth that they are there to help the king and to return the Archmage. Whenever Sir Gareth ask to see papers demanding such and order, Edward SLyly mentions that the papers were burnt during their battles with the fire elementals withing the town of Vadian. Sir Gareth finds the story questionable, but after their aide, he cannot find any reason why their story should not check out.

He allows them close to the Archmage and Edward dispels the wards at the Archmage’s feet. When he moves in to do this the Archmage speaks that he is not who they think he is. After conferring with the party and Sir Gareth, he dispels the imagery spell to reveal the archmage as a commoner.

THe man explains that he is a villager of Quarion, who was kidnapped by Marcaus and his men. He does not know where the men left to, but he overheard them mentioning The Swamps of Ruurg. Edward talks to Sir Gareth and tells them that they will return the man to Quarion. Gareth agrees and says he will report back to the king to prepare their next action.

The party walked the villager back home, and began their crazy antics in the city of Quarion. Edward recruited more people to his fan base, and Moultager and Heinrich continued theior attempts to find the love of a beautiful woman at the town pub. They managed to find an elven woman they deemed suitable for their wooing, although she was not so willing to submit to their whim. Kylin thankfully interveened before the two men were beaten senseless for their annoyances.

Kylin apoligized for the two and the woman perked up at hearing about the parties involvement in completeing odd jobs. She asked if they would be interested in taking on some jobs for the not so average men. When Kylin accepted the woman showed her true form, transforming into an older human man.

Moultager and Heinrich left discussed as the man spoke of a bounty board set up in Port Ilia. He explains that the board was set up by Bazrak, and that it is not for weak travelers. Kylin shares a few drinks with the man as he continues to explain Bazrak’s ability to make items that you cannot find anywhere else in Terah.

The party meets back up and Kylin explains what he heard to the others. They venture off to Port Ilia and find the board. They notice that the BattleBriar is located directly within The Lanoldren Forest, and they decide this would be the best bounty to collect first. They search for days before finally finding the BattleBriar hidden among the wilderness. The dispatch of the Briart and claim there prize from Bazrak.

With one bounty down the party looks to capture the bounty on the Spellgaunt, as they can grab the bounty on their way to Krusk, a Orc village located withing The Swamps of Ruurg. They venture across The Plains of Telara and onto the middle bridge stretching over The Great River Gorge. As the party makes it halfway across they see a figure come riding towards them, though it does not appear hostile.

As the figure gets closer they soon recognize it as Marcaus. He does not have his weapons drawn and slows down as he approaches. He tells the party that he first thought their pursuit to be cute, but now he finds it highly agitating. He gives them what he says is his final warning, “Back off now and I’ll let you live. Continue and you won’t like where you end up.”

He rides off, back to where he rode in from. The party waits briefly and then decides to ignore his warning and continue across the bridge. When they arrive on the other side, they see Marcaus, sitting on his horse and waiting for them. By his side is another man riding horseback. The man wears no armor and holds no weapons, but sitting in front of him is the archmage.

Kylin unleashes spells towards Marcaus, but an unseen Wall of Force prevents the spell from making contact. Upon seeing this magical barrier, Heinrich decides to make a leaping charge. This tactic also fails as Heinrich bounces from the wall. Marcaus laughs at their failed attempts, “I warned you to stay away.” He lifts a small device from his waist and presses a button.

Immediately both side of the bridge explode, sending the bridge and the party falling down into the Great River Gorge. With a little luck the bridge manages to wedge itself into the ravine as it gets closer to the party and the party, through some quick thinking, is able to arrive relatively unharmed at the bottom of the gorge. A little north on the bank iof the river, a large caverne entrance can be seen. It’s the last place they would like to travel into, but with the archmage’s Wall of Force still holding them in, they are left with no other option.

Upon entering the cave they immediately detect a terrible odor in the air. The further into the cave the move, the worse it gets. They travel for days and soon begin to find piles of dead animals and humanoids. Their corpses only enhance the smell that stings their nostrils. They soon find themselves standing in a massive chamber. In the center is a large pool of shallow water. Corpses are floating within it, and by their bloated and pickled appearance, it looks as if they have been there for days, possibley even weeks.

As if this was not enough to elude to the resident of the caverns, a large pile of gold was visible on the other side of the water. As the party approached closer, an Adult Black Dragon, lept out over top of the party, landing himself in the center of the water. His mighty roar caused the party to rear back. They stood ready to fight.

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