Crystalline Dreams

Draconian Conditions

Of devils and giants.

After observing the battle between the two tribes from a high altitude, and gleaning information from them via psionic and magical means, it was decided that they had waited long enough. Khalaan, using several Wall of Force spells, separated the two sides, while Balthezar gathered the Jaguar tribe members that were still alive into a Telekinetic sphere. Further questioning of the Eagles, and telepathic probing of the Jaguars, ended with the decision to transport the remaining Jaguars back to the Eagle’s settlement for trial and punishment. Terelk did not like seeing the Jaguars imprisoned, but could not deny that they had wrongfully attacked the Eagles.

Soon the party was underway, with Balthezar standing atop Harry the Hut, keeping the Jaguars imprisoned. Meanwhile, Khalaan had retired to study his spells and ponder what their purpose for being sent to Aevquin could be. Terelk found herself pondering the day’s new trials and adventures and considered the possible intentions her god might have for her.

Eventually, their path led them to a giant tree with obvious special properties. Leaving the Jaguar prisoners within Harry, with their cohorts to watch over them, the four ventured inside the tree. It was discovered to be a many floored temple to Touvaun, with vast riches and elaborately decorated rooms. However, finding no one within, and nothing to help them in their journey aside from cryptic messages carved into a wall, the three decided to continue on their way, marking the temple for further exploration later.

Continuing their journey to the settlement of the Eagle’s tribe, the party discovered a dark skinned, bald pated woman walking through the jungle. On Khalaan’s silent command, Harry descended to the ground and the woman was questioned. Terelk quickly knew the woman to be an avatar of Fharlanghn. This avatar, though calm and terse, was eager to accompany and aid the adventurers on their way. She advised them on two paths that would lead them to the Eagle’s settlement, and then to the coast and their way home. It was decided that the quicker path would be best despite the avatar’s warning that the quick path would be more dangerous.

The next day, the party found themselves at a large river that flowed across their path. Deciding that the Jaguars needed to rest and exercise, Harry was lowered to the ground once again, and Balthezar released the Jaguars from their telekinetic prison. As soon as their feet touched the ground, a single Jaguar let out a furious roar and, grabbing up a fallen branch, charged the Psion, the branch held high like a club. Without a word, Balthezar raised his hand, pointing a finger, and the man disappeared in a flash of green light. The rest of the Jaguar, bewildered and frightened, raised no more voice in protest of their imprisonment. They were soon returned to the sphere of force.

Almost immediately, the party was seemingly under attack. With no apparent source, the water of the river rose violently, seeming to aim itself directly at Terelk in an attempt to drown her. But Terelk’s keen eyes and strong will saw the deluge for an illusion and stood her ground. And, as the wave of immaterial water passed through her, she saw within the river a pair of massive orange dragons, almost aligator like in shape, swimming down river toward the party. She knew them to be under attack and shouted a warning to the others. As Balthezar stowed the Jaguars in the safety of Harry’s confines Khalaan and Lunara moved toward the embankment to see what hazard was coming.

Terelk drew her mighty bow and took aim at one of the dragons. With preternatural speed and skill, she rained energy tipped arrows down upon it. It was dead before the last volley pierced it’s scaly hide. Khalaan immediately followed with a flash of magical energy. With arcane powers few mortals posses, he seemingly disappeared from the view of the others. In actuality he had temporarily stopped time for all but himself. Using his time craftily, Khalaan flew into the air to gain a better vantage of the battle. He then raised four successive walls of scintillating prismatic energy in front of the second dragon. As he reentered normal time, Khalaan watched with a smile as the dragon helplessly collided with layer after layer of differing energies and effects. Even with all it’s might and toughness, the dragon was helpless against the onslaught and quickly was no more. With their demise, the dragon’s caves were soon discovered and it was taken upon the group to explore in search of answers and treasure.

The party split into two groups. Terelk and her cohort, Kostael, Lunara, and the avatar of Fharlanghn went into one cave, discovering a mixed clutch of dragon’s eggs and their reptilian caretakers. After dispatching the guardians, Lunara decided to take the eggs for herself and placed them, one after the other, into her Bag of Holding. Balthezar and Khalaan, accompanied by Khalaan’s cohort, Tuilira, entered the other cave and soon encountered an antimagic field, which caused Khalaan’s Bag of Holding to vomit up a mountain of sand. Unable to dispel the field, Khalaan urged that they continue quickly to escape it’s effect. On the other side they came to the edge of an underground chasm, at the bottom of which lay a great whirlpool. Encasing the three in a sphere of telekinetic force, Balthezar lowered them into the water and through the center of the torrent.

Hours later, Khalaan, Tuilira, and Balthezar found themselves in a tunnel of black rock. Using a spell to strip layers of the rock away, Khalaan converted it into sand and refilled his bag. He was quick to mention that they appeared to be within a volcano, given the color and substance of the rock around them. With a Sending spell, Khalaan also alerted the others of their location and urged the first group to join them. Upon wakening the new arrivals and making a quick search of the area, the party found themselves to be within a large structure shaped like a volcano. It was ringed with a spiral stair leading to several immense doors all the way to a gigantic opening at the top.

Emerging from the aperture via a fly spell cast upon the whole party, they were shocked to find three blazing suns shining down upon a vast wasteland of volcanoes, flowing rivers of lava, and massive crystal formations of varying colors. As Balthezar went about gathering samples of the crystals, Lunara’s keen eyes spied a line of draconic looking devils, called Abishai, traveling a small distance away. After discussing matters and questioning the avatar, it was decided that they were likely on a demi-plane created by an Obsidian dragon.

Not wanting to be discovered just yet, the party retreated inside once again. It was at this time that they heard a tremendous cacophony and the very walls shook, dust falling all around them. Curious as the cat she truly was, Lunara flew to the door that seemed the likely source of the disturbance. Looking inside, she saw several more of the devils and a large group of Kobolds of different colors. All of which were gathering in a wide corridor with several doors along the walls. And at the end was a rather large door which shook and rattled with the struggles and roars of some unseen thing. Before she could act, Balthezar used his telekinetic powers to pull her away from the door and open it.

Upon entering, Balthezar promptly targeted the door at the end of the corridor with a blast of psionic power, destroying it and many of the Kobolds with devastating sonic energy. Quickly following, Terelk flew into the corridor and prepared to riddle the remaining occupants with arrows. However, Khalaan, with a wan smile upon his face, noticed two of the devils chanting in unison and two large circles of arcane power emanating from the floor. He asked Terelk to spare the two devils, hoping that they might summon something that might provide a greater challenge. Frowning in disappointment, Terelk complied, aiming for the remaining devils and last few Kobolds. With the same alacrity of a few hours earlier, knocking three arrows at a time, she let fly with another barrage of arrows. Her arrows flew through the air, each one split into two. Every arrow passed through it’s initial target and riddled the one behind. In a matter of a couple seconds, every remaining devil and kobold lay dead, even the second of the two devils that had charged Balthezar, the first having been disintegrated by his own hand. Leaving just the two devils in the midst of summoning.

As the two devils finished their summoning, the party saw a most bizarre creature within the cell behind the shattered remains of the door. It’s height easily reaching ten feet or more, the creature was a mass of rippling muscles under tough purple skin and a thick mane of bristly black hair. It’s head that of a cross between an Ogre and a Minotaur, with great horns jutting forward. It strained against blood red shackles, trying desperately to get loose. Thinking this creature could be no friend of the devils and their company, Khalaan decided to free the monster. Just then the devils finished their summoning and two Pit Fiends appeared in the corridor. Their terrible power and evil aura breaking over the party in waves.

Again freezing time, Khalaan wove magics in quick succession. He first shattered the magical manacles restraining the great purple monster. Then he turned the stone beneath the devil’s feet to sand, and then to molten glass. With his last moments, he let loose a massive flow of magic and wove protections around all his companions. Chief among them was a powerful spell of invisibility. As time returned to it’s normal flow, the devils and Pit Fiends found themselves sinking into the molten glass. Though unharmed by the heat, the lesser devils discovered they could not escape, and soon drowned. The Pit Fiends were too strong for such a thing though and lumbered forward, searching for the enemies they had been called forth to fight. The first was met by Kostael, who charged forward, calling upon the gods to smite the devil, and it fell to his martial ferocity.

It was then that three things occured. First was the shattering of another door at the rear of the corridor, from which emerged a haggard looking human male. The second was the great purple monster who ran forward out of his cell, leaping over the steaming pools of molten glass. Landing on the other side with a great shaking of the floor, it gave a roar and turned to meet the remaining Pit Fiend. The third thing was Tuilira, who had turned herself into a raging whirlwind, approaching the fray.

The second Pit Fiend, having more time than his companion, was able to release a swarm of meteors upon the giant purple creature before him. The great blazing boulders, flowing with lava and wreathed in flame, streaked down from seemingly nowhere. However, unseen, Balthezar had bestowed a protective power upon the giant purple monster to protect him from elemental harm. With this protection, combined with his tremendous might, the creature was able to shrug off most of the terrible onslaught. Roaring with rage, the purple goliath pulled his fist back, ready to strike a mighty blow. But it was never to land as Terelk let loose with another barrage of arrows, this time calling on her god. The arrows, now blessed with holy might, felled the Pit Fiend. Its body fell to the ground looking like some large scaly pincushion.

Things were not quite over though. Tuilira had gone through some sort of metamorphosis into a great tornado of thrashing winds and coronal bolts of electricity. This soon abated, forming itself into the windy form of the godling Isamr√©. Alone, Balthezar knelt before the deity and was given a nod of bemused approval. Terelk and her cohort stood in surprise and some confusion. Khalaan, however, was perturbed at the seeming hijacking of his cohort, and spoke with no small amount of ire. This was all received with good natured amusement by the windy god. He had come among them, but could not stay long. He answered Khalaan’s questions with a lightness only a god could have in such circumstances.

Meanwhile, Balthezar took it upon himself to discover the identities of the two people that they had apparently freed. First, he introduced himself to the human. The human spoke the tribal languages of the Aevquin lands at first, but the two of them soon found that they could communicate in the language of the dragons. The man named himself Bodizzorak, and claimed to hold the power of dragons within his body. Balthezar then went to find the great purple behemoth’s name, if he had one. The giant named himself Garah, and told them all of how he had been sold by his creator to a great glassy black dragon. But he had rebelled and had been sent to the prison, being occasionally used for brute physical labor. With that, Balthezar invited the two former prisoners to travel with the party. At least until such time as they were escaped from the strange demi-plane of devils and dragons. And when all were agreed, Balthezar telekinetically swept the bodies of the Pit Fiends into his Bag of Holding.

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