Following the vision of The Ineluctable Prison granted to Sigarda, the party struck a bargain with an ancient lich: Alderpash, the Runelord of Wrath. He advised the party to take on the prison’s lieutenants, and to plumb the prison’s Vault for some of the Demon Lord Baphomet’s most prized possessions — all for the promise that they would take on Baphomet which could release Alderpash from his prison. (-GM)
18th day of Erastus, 4728 AR
Barca and Fella were “too tired” to continue exploring, so we were operating in diminished capacity. The room we were in had the four artifacts on the ends and the four jars plus the replacement statue in the middle. Clearly we were supposed to do some sort of ritual to unlock the artifacts. But what? I decided to ask the altar itself.
“So, bowl, what do people usually fill you with?” I asked.
“Water. Dirty water.” it replied.
Fortunately, Alderpash had some unholy water on him, so we went and got it, then poured it in the four bowls. The first one unlocked Baphomet’s own glaive. The second unlocked a scimitar that was forged from the shards of Sarenrae’s battle with Rovagug at the dawn of creation. Maybe we could carbon-date it and disprove the “the universe is billions of years old” myth once and for all. The third held the Herald’s heavy heavenly heart. It probably wouldn’t be that useful, as I was planning on just resurrecting him. The last one had a ball of twine. Nothing special or magical about it, just a bunch of string. We threw it all in the sanctum.
We decided to go fight the inverted giant. On our way we fought some tarrys and found a corpse of an astral deva angel. We threw it in the sanctum, preserving it so I could resurrect it when I became powerful enough. At the double doors of doom, Alderpash informed us via telepathy that once we awoke the giant, the warden would be alerted.
“The warden? You mean Svendack? The one we killed?” I thought back.
“Pfft, you didn’t really kill her. She’s the warden. She has plenty of tricks up her sleeve.”
“Are you sure?”
“Of course I’m sure. I am Alderpash, immortal runelord and master wizard. My knowledge spans eons of study and research. I possess secrets from the height of the Age of Legends that scholars today could not even dream of. When I give you information, it is invariably an absolute, unquestionable, 100% factual truth.”
“Huh. I guess we’ll add her to our list.”
“Wait a minute. Let me see here… oh, looks like you did kill her after all. Never mind.”
The giant wasn’t there, just more demodands. I don’t think we’ve seen an single actual demon in this maze, except for that double marilith. We killed them all, but one of them managed to dispel Beckles’ bigness before his body was boldly butchered. We had to go all the way to Alderpash’s library and back just to make him big again. Then we decided to rest in the sanctum, and when we looked out there were more demodands guarding us.
Apparently my description of our previous whole scam was “not good enough,” so I’ll try to add a little more feeling to this one.
We waited, patient and unhurried, until all the demodands were looking away from the sanctum. Then we threw the portable hole unto the floor. The fabric spread outward like a cape, then slowly settled on the smooth stone slab. Our personal extra dimension opened itself to the world.
“Hey! Up there! I’m stuck in this hole! Can you help me out?” cried Sigarda.
“Who’s there? Show your face!”
“How can I do that if I’m stuck in a hole?”
“The hole right next to you! Be careful or you’ll fall in, too!”
“Well I’ll be damned! I could have sworn the floor was perfectly flat.”
“Yes, very interesting. Now get me out!”
“Okay, I’m coming down!”
“It should be noted that I am quite heavy, and require the strength of all of you in order to get out.”
“Anything for a good neighbor.” And they all dived right in. I reached out from our true location and swiped the aptly named portable hole, folding and pocketing it.
“What is this? The outside has disappeared! And… I feel lightheaded. There’s no air! We’re… we’re going to suffocate! Help!”
“I’m terribly sorry,” remarked Beckles. “But you have fallen right into our trap.”
With the demodands dealt with, we entered the alcove and summoned the inverted giant. It was agonizingly disgusting, with a gug-like mouth and intestines on the outside. It roared and attacked us.
Who will win? Us, obviously. Find out how next time!
Barca, merfolk conjurer 15 (archmage)
Beckles strix brawler 16 (champion)
The Incredible Fella, human ranger 6 / diviner wizard 1 / arcane archer 7 / slayer 3 (champion)
Nunya, gnome spirit-guide oracle 17 (hierophant)
Sigarda, ratfolk hagbound witch 12 / demoniac 5 (archmage)
8 mythic tiers