Dark Side of Ptolus

Bloody Hell (Well, Halls)

Do I see any bloody footprints?

As it was late in the evening when the heroes left the house of the Green Dagger Gang, they decided to retire for the night, returning to their apartment in Oldtown (or the Temple of Bahamut in Content Not Found: eoni case or Tent City for Pieter).

The next morning, the heroes noticed a new bulletin board erected in the entry hall of their tenement. Examining it, they found several advertisements for used gear and fine clothes, as well as two wanted posters, one for a dark elf named Shilukar and one for a murderous mage called Rulus Hobb. Pieter noticed that a delving party based out of the Ghostly Minstrel in [[Delver’s Square]] was seeking a cleric and happened to possess a key. Thinking that this might possibly be the key they were seeking, Pieter headed to Midtown to find them.

Arriving at the Ghostly Minstrel, Pieter was directed to a salon in the back. Knocking, he was admitted and found the room filled with several litorians and dragonborn. A very petite gray-colored dragonbord introduced himself as [|Hakaster], speaking in a high-pitched shrill voice. Pieter explained that he had found their ad and wanted more information about the delve. Hakaster responded, telling the cleric that they possessed a map directing them to a previously-unknown vault in Dwarvenhearth. They also, by chance, acquired the key to said vault. A tense negotiation ensued, with Pieter eventually convincing Hakaster to let him see the key, as it posed no threat. Seeing that the key was not the key he sought, he politely excused himself, stating that he would be in contact if he could ditch the incompetents with whom he currently traveled.

Meanwhile, in the Temple District, Jaecyn, Kel, and the ranger arrived at the Temple of Bahamut and found Eoni praying in his chamber. The group began to argue about how best to glean information about the [seeming crimes] of the priest of Kharos Veltargo. This discussion lasted long enough that Pieter was able to arrive and quickly grow frustrated with what he found to be pointless debate. Taking matters into his own hands, he marched into the Temple of Kharos. There, a floating rose-colored cloud told him that a childhood friend had grown to be a wizard and had just died in [[Ghul’s Labyrinth]]. An acolyte by the name of [[|Altamic]] approached him and asked if he needed help.

Back out in the streets, a guard of the City Watch came up to the gathered party, recognizing them as Delvers and gave them a broadsheet proclaiming that early the previous morning, at about the time at which Theldrat’s shop was looted, the City Library was robbed by a priest of Kharos, losing a valuable tome entitled “The Prophecies of the King in Yellow.” The guard asked if they had any information. Having none, Eoni quickly responded in the negative. At about that time, they noticed a group of well-dressed and well-armed individuals wearing broaches with the seal of the City Library on them enter the temple aggressively. Eoni and Jaecyn moved to follow.

Inside the temple, Pieter dropped Veltargo’s name, stating that the mysterious cleric had won a prize which Pieter was to deliver. By this point, Jaecyn and Eoni had entered to find Altamic easily seeing through Pieter’s spotty bluff. Growing tense, Altamic stated that no Veltargo was associated with the temple and asked why he was really there. Deftly stepping in, Jaecyn explained that they were investigating the claim that a priest of Kharos by the name of Veltargo had infected a street gang with a debilitating disease after hiring them to rob a shop in the North Market. Watching the library officials enter the administrative offices of the temple angrily, Eoni interjected that they believed he was also responsible for the recent theft at the City Library.

Intrigued by the concern and trustworthiness Jaecyn seemed to display, Altamic glanced about warily, then ushered the rogue into a small prayer chapel. There, he confessed that he had been robbed by frail, balding, crooked-toothed man two weeks prior. The man had beaten him and stolen his clothing. When the incident was reported to the Watch, Altamic was given a silver piece to cover the cost of the garments, but the incident was not investigated. Altamic relayed that, during the struggle, he had pulled a small stone pendant inscribed with a crooked star from the wrist of his assailant. He gave this pendant to Jaecyn. When the pendant was shown to Pieter, he recognized it as a stone which frequently sealed doors in Ghul’s Labyrinth, especially to tombs, but he did not know to which door this pendant belonged.

With this new information, the party headed to Oldtown to inquire at the Library. They found the front yard in complete disarray as mages, librarians, chroniclers, and passers-by searched the grounds for evidence and clues as to the identity and location of the thief. Finding a young scribe, they asked if he could explain what happened. Thinking they might have some information, he introduced himself as [[|Thelian]] and told them that early the previous morning, a priest of Kharos had arrived in the Department of New Acquisitions stating that he had heard that they had a tome of prophecies which they could not open. Not knowing how he had learned this information, but assuming that he had had some sort of divine vision, they allowed him to see the book. As soon as he had the tome in his hands, he muttered some incomprehensible words, and the room filled with an inky, semi-solid black smoke. When they were able to clear the smoke, they saw the cleric jumping out the nearby window. Running to the portal, they saw he had fallen the three stories seemingly unscathed and watched him disappear down Yarrow Street.

The heroes told the scribe about Altamic’s having been robbed and stripped two weeks ago, explaining that the thieves were probably one in the same. Thelian thanked them for the information and prepared to leave to tell his superiors the information. Jaecyn quickly stopped him, however, and asked if he where they could use Veltargo’s pendant. He responded, saying that he could probably find the information in the Ptolus History section of the library. Thankful for their help, he ushered them inside, waving the normal 1 silver shield fee for admittance. Thelian quickly searched some records, but could not find the particular symbol. He recommended that the party inquire at the [[Delver’s Guild]] library nearby.

Heading to the Delver’s Guild, they found a petite, shriveled halfling woman working the front desk. To gain access to the map room, they each payed to gain membership in the Guild. After about 4 hours of searching, they were able to find a map of the location, placing it under the Warrens. They paid the fee to have the map copied and left, heading for Delver’s Square.

The party descended into the Undercity and followed their map to their destination, the Halls of Blood. The ranger spotted some bloody footprints which implied that their was a secret door nearby. Finding several small niches on the back wall of the chamber, he ascertained that the door the pendant open was there. Inserting the pendant, Jaecyn open the door, draining the pool of blood and revealing a tunnel. Entering the tunnel, the party emerged to find a large cavern at the center of which was a 40 foot drop to the pool of blood below.

Starting to follow the narrow tunnels and walkways which spiraled to the bottom, the party was attacked by zombies. Combat ensued, with Pieter and Eoni each coming close to death on several occasions. When they were victorious, the party continued its descent, finding a looted tomb along the way. The ranger open the large sarcophagus in the center of the room, find it empty, as though the corpse had risen and walked out. He also found a hidden cache of burial treasures not removed by looters. Despite the protests of his companions, he took them.

Reaching the bottom of the chasm, the party dispatched three skeletons, one of whom was wearing ceremonial robes and bearing a holy symbol of a bloody flail, matching the one on the looted sarcophagus.

Entering an adjacent chamber, the party met Veltargo, the bent cultist wearing an iron mask painted to appear to be a skull, who raised an owlbear zombie and swarms of skeletal rats. The party fought hard, taking many hits as the the cultists spells, the confusion of the swarms, and the poison of the two imps wore at their defenses. Eventually, the mad priest was slain, causing his creations to fall to dust and his imp allies to flee. On a podium in the center of the chamber, the party found the missing tome, a third of its pages in the middle ripped out and Theldrat’s key still in the lock.

In a storage room off to the side, the party found the corpses of the remaining cultists, their skin seemingly melting off their bodies. On a table, a note read “I shall come and investigate the book tonight. Make sure the key and chest are ready. Should you have found out more about Neveran’s All-Key; I am very interested. S” Under a mattress, they found a torn note reading “The Bell will herald the Night of Dissolution!”

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