The Age of Man

Episode 2- Shell Game

Upon arriving in Abdera, the players were greeted by Mayor Orestes and invited into his home. Their prisoners were escorted to jail while they learned that the situation they had been sent to investigate had grown more complex. Of the four workers who had excavated the temple one had died, one had vanished, and one had picked up stakes and left town. There was also a break in at the Mayor’s home that resulted in the murder of the serving man- Michael. In addition, one of the items excavated from the temple was broken (a mirror) and the other was stolen (a knife made of glass).

The PCs questioned the household and began to notice holes in a few stories. It appeared that Paul, the oldest son of the Mayor (17), had broken into the basement and stolen the knife. He may also have uncovered the mirror, and when Michael was cleaning up in the room some sort of shapeshifting creature left the mirror and murdered him.

Paul took the dagger to his girlfriend, an elven woman who recently came to Abdera to ‘seek her fortune’ by seeking out others’ fortunes. She convinced Paul that if he helped her get some of the items from the temple they would have enough money to flee Abdera and set up in a real city together. Paul revealed he was intending to meet with her the following night, and would take them to the spot if they promised not to hurt her (since he was the one who stole the knife). When he went to his room, however, Adonia cast her senses up into his room and observed him holding a necklace and concentrating- it seemed he somehow had a device that allowed him to send her a message.

The Quiet Men decided to take the evening’s rest, and visit the uncovered temple in daylight. The carvings they found on and in the temple led them to believe it was a temple to Sin, the three-eyed white Dragon. Within they found a few minor items of power in the entryway, adjacent to a room with a teleportation circle, and two dead Dragonborn bodies. One had an unusual dagger, and the other bore a holy symbol no one had seen before, a shiny black eye on a flat black field.

The living quarters of the temple were explored, and in addition to numerous objects of art and rare books they found a hidden coffer containing 950 gp worth of coins and gems, 3 healing potions, 2 vials of Alchemist’s Frost, and a mostly burned collection of documents related to the sealing off of the lower reaches of the temple- a scrap of which said ‘… lower temple has been sealed off as well, and it’s entrance hidden. Traps have been set to discourage intrusion, so that the Fluid can be retrieved when needed. We should be ready to leave come nightfall. I only hope that all this work is wasted, and that Ariken’s Vision never comes …’.

The party then descended into the deeper parts of the temple, where a series of traps separated Katharos from the rest of the group for a few minutes. They overcame the traps and reunited, and Katharos described seeing evidence that what awaited them was a primal creature of darkness, and that several light sources would need to be lit to insure their safety. They continued on and were attacked by several swarms of twisted and malnourished Drakes before entering a massive ritual chamber.

A strange creature with fluid features loomed over the mayor’s daughter in the center of the room, as each mirror reflected her image back at them. A brief wave of emotion passed over Argent‘s features at the site, and he declared that the ritual must be stopped. Oz advanced cautiously, casting a suspicious eye on Katharos. Valentine charged forward to meet the strange creature in battle, driving it back and away from the girl. Katharos moved forward as if to help him, but then Oz’s suspicions proved well placed, as he drove his knife into his allies back. In the parties light, each mirror disgorged another of the foul creatures, whose flesh twisted into a mockery of the party as they swarmed them. Others slipped from the shadows to strike from surprise, and the battle was truly joined.

With Oz and Valentine binding the bulk of the mirror creatures, Argent and Adonia cast their magics through the mirrors to bring low groups of the foul shapeshifters. From the shadows at the far end of the chamber came another surprise, Argent the Panagyric’s faithful manservant Grouse swept in to lend his aid.

The party worked seamlessly together, pinning down the enemy as the mirrors were destroyed and preventing young Angela from being taken from the chamber (though she did suffer a most unfortunate stabbing, before Grouse’s stirring words strengthened her resolve). A single one of the creatures escaped into a mirror, and the rest were slain. It was clear from the condition of the girl that she had been held there since the day of Michael’s death, a second victim of the thing in the mirror. Cells behind the ritual chamber held Katharos’ body, an Elven brigand, the girl’s cell, and two other recently occupied but empty cells. A rocky outcropping above the ritual site held a dragon egg coated and surrounded by layers of choke frost

The party took custody of the Elven prisoner (in exchange for information about Isabella, the leader of the brigands), and the egg, then began their journey out of the temple.

Loot-
An Anunnaki idol- Functions as a dowsing rod, but with a +4 bonus to nature rolls when foraging.

An Ironskin Soulfang- Power (Consumable): Minor Action. Until you remove this soulfang, you gain resist 3 to all damage, and you take damage equal to half your healing surge value at the start of your turn or if you remove the soulfang on the turn you use it. Damage caused by this soulfang cannot be reduced by any means.
A coffer containing 950 gp in coins and gems
3 healing potions
2 vials of Alchemist’s Frost
3 Sending Stones
1 Dragon egg
1 Elven prisoner
1 recovered 8 year old
A number of rare books and art that would typically belong to the town of Abdera, though you could likely smuggle them out of you wish to keep the proceeds (likely around 100,000 gp worth of items)

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dspaulding

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