(My writeups will be shorter from now on because of my limited time. But if any of you want to add, feel free!!)
15th day of Lamashan, 4712 AR
Blood continued to run out of the alchemist Wolf’s head, but a gray-robed priest of Razmir rushed up to him and staunched the flow with his magic. The barbarian Grog, still in rage, gloated his victory to the sky. Their overseer, the cultist Krant, handed him a bottle of wine and befriended him instantly.
For the next two days, Wolf, the barbarians Grog and Katrina, the druid Glondorfin, the gunslinger Henri and the ranger Lillian did menial chores in the temple, including writing paragraphs of Razmir’s teachings, at one point being led out by the temple’s leader, Egarthis, to conduct a sermon during which the party had to distract citizens of Magnimar so that Razmiran priests could pick their pockets. However, while orating toward the audience, Lillian accidentally gave away that their pockets were being picked — drawing suspicion and resulting in their “sermon” earning no money that day.
Egarthis and Krant interrogated and beat Lillian in a private room — after publicly flogging her the day before — as punishment for failure. They then made her wear the Mask of Shame, which prevented him from speaking.
While infiltrating the cult, they spoke to priests around the dinner table and found them to be not very concerned about the greater good and focused on advancing in rank within the order.
In the barracks, the party heard from other white-robed members that screams often could be heard from an area in the temple basement that was strictly off-limits to initiates like the party members. Some members of the party cooked up a plan.
Late that night, as their fellow initiate Evlar slept, Henri and Grog knocked him unconscious and called on the temple priests to come! They accused Evlar of trying to escape the temple. Evlar denied it vociferously, which did not stop the priests from dragging him into the forbidden part of the temple. As the door was about to swing closed behind them, Henri and Grog caught it before it could shut.
They tiptoed inside, where they saw Evlar dragged to the cells they all had woken up in days earlier. When the priests began walking back toward them, Henri and Grog snuck down another door and down some stairs. The stairs suddenly angled forward sending them sliding down into a chamber where a giant snake attacked them!
(Meanwhile, Lillian, Wolf, Glondorfin and Katrina were back in the barracks playing a game with some initiates who were rolling dice and pretending to be cultists of an evil temple.)
After killing the snake, Grog and Henri climbed out of the chamber. They went behind another door to find an opulently-furnished room with a pillows and a throne at one end. After prying the gems off the throne, they found a concealed door behind a curtain. However, when they touched it they were attacked by several small earth elementals!
Grog and Henri defeated them and went into the secret room. There, they found a bunch of treasure and magic items, as well as an accounting ledger for the Temple!
Later, they found a trapdoor leading into a secret tunnel leading back to The Ranger’s Lament: a way out of the temple! They sneaked back to the rest of the party and led them out!
They waited for Starday to reunite with their contact, Tegan, at The Matador’s Lodge. However, in the interim they discovered that Wolf’s new ice cream shop was torched by vandals! He would need to find a way to start his business over…
When they met up with Tegan, he congratulated them for witnessing the Temple’s shady dealings and taking wealth from the Temple, but said that he was afraid that the accounting ledger — showing that money was sent to their main temple in Razmiran — was not enough to get the government on their side. He suggested that they sneak into the Temple leader’s private chambers to find evidence indisputably implicating the Temple in crimes. He said he would see what support he could get within the government with the limited evidence the party had brought them, and get back to them in a couple of days, but that if they wanted to take more direct action themselves, he would not interfere…
Lillian leapt at this invitation! They would return to the Temple through the secret tunnel and try to reach the leader’s quarters!
They entered the secret tunnel again, and emerged in the Temple basement behind the Temple’s jail cells. Here, they found that Evlar was no longer in the cell. As they sneaked toward the common area, a grey-robed priest happened upon them in the hallway. The party attacked him quickly, before he could yell an alarm to alert the temple…
XP at the end of the session:
Glondorfin – 5,025
Grog – 7,060
Joshua – 4,783
Katrina – 4,705
Lard – 4,626
Lillian – 5,925
Wolf – 4,613