Campaign of the Month: January 2013

DANgerous Kalamar 4

Temple of Brovadol Pt.1

Temple of Brovadol Pt.1
The Party


Deceased following their encounter with the Aspect of Undeath, the slain Agents of Cosdol were escorted by Alanthiess the angelic servitor to a meeting with five of the deities of Tellene where they learned of The Dark One’s scheme to finally bring about the Time of the Void and swallow the sun. Aided by murdered heroes transformed into aspects of evil, the dark god sought to stoke religious fervor to a boiling point before finally revealing the Herald of the Void, his Godspawn son conceived during the rape of the massacred heroes’ leader, Hanadrel Rolendar.

In need of divinely empowered agents of their own to act on the mortal stage and counter The Dark One’s plot, the assembled gods imbued the Party members with power anew, remaking them as aspects of light and returning them to life. Back in the world of the living, the newly minted Aspects moved toward the village of Blerden, intent on reclaiming a long lost temple and creating a religious symbol to blunt the impact of the Godspawn’s impending unveil. Along the way an old friend, Gram Swiftaxe made a surprise return and signed up for another adventure.

Godday, Sixth of Siege-hold, 1044 Y.K.

Joined by Guardian Glandal Strond, Gram Swiftaxe and a squadron of dwarven warriors from the Gramdal Clan of Grumstone, the Aspect Agents departed Blerden in the pre-dawn hours. Their trek to the site said to be the lost temple was a cautious one, with every effort made to ensure the approach remained hidden from any Broken Fang scouts that might be watching. By sunrise the company stood at the outskirts of their target’s grounds, ready to move in and hoping for a lethargic, if not slumbering enemy.

Stoat crept up first, scouting ahead and discerning the presence of a small number of orc tribesmen in the few remaining structures leading up to what was surely The Valiant’s temple. The dome roof was still in solid condition and the eye of Brovadol in relief on the massive doors left no doubt. Alamir and Strond exchanged a brief knowing glance before the former charged forth into the nearest structure – a dilapidated storage building, bringing “The Civilizer” to bear on the Fang warrior eating inside.

The resulting howl of pain drew additional enemies from the nearby weathered stables and grain silo-turned-guard tower. From a concealed position alongside the storage building, arrows loosed from the bow of Stoat found their mark in the enemy atop the silo while the wild shaped Hilg raced up the exterior steps to finish the creature off. The orcs from the stable fared little better, immediately blinded from Maldus’ flash of light.

As the area’s last enemy combatants rushed toward the Group from hidden places around a nearby hillside, Bardic music from the lap-harp of Cosdrelita filled the air, granting the Aspects further power to use against their foes. Rarnok drew the final humanoids, bringing them low and ending the fight. The scene fell strangely silent then, with no reinforcements from the temple proper as had been expected. Did the orcs inside perhaps sleep?

Agreeing to maintain security of the exterior area, Gram and the Gramdal Clan dwarves took up positions in the now empty buildings, allowing Guardian Strond and the Party to enter the temple itself. Long dead bones littered the stairs leading to the enormous entry doors, which proved extremely heavy and difficult to open. A daylight spell revealed the main level of the temple to be empty, with a large statue of Brovadol lying shattered and defiled.

Containing his anger in the face of this affront, Alamir contented himself with the knowledge that the temple would soon be reclaimed, and one day restored to its former glory. Contact poison was discovered smeared upon many doorhandles on the upper levels, evidently intended to prevent anyone from coming to the aid of the ancient corpses of clerics and worshippers locked inside. Only the infirmary and a barracks room were found to be readily open, with the latter containing a lone animated skeleton – a pitiful creature handled quickly by Maldus.

With the main and upper floors cleared, the Party made its way to the lower levels, assuredly reserved for clerics and paladins of The Valiant in the temple’s operating days. More poison guarded the antechamber below, as the entry stairwell floor was found covered in a fine lethal dust which was easily kicked up by passing persons. Conjured water rendered the trap inert, as Hilg and Rarnok put their magical capabilities together.

Inside the antechamber itself, another source of water could be heard. Alamir again led the way, quickly discovering a vile spectre hidden in the corner cobwebs. Both incorporeal and possessing a touch that drained the very essence of life from its target, the undead sapped the courageous cleric heavily before being destroyed by the remainder of the Group. Fearful of Alamir’s fate if left alone, the Party barricaded the room and made a makeshift campsite to tend to their ally’s need.

Veshday, Seventh of Siege-hold, 1044 Y.K.

Waking to find Alamir refreshed and able to continue, the Party broke camp and pressed onward. The audible water sound was found to be a well located in a side chamber, just prior to a room identified by Guardian Strond as a place for prayer. The doorway opposite the rotting wooden benches opened into the inner temple, a brilliantly decorated hall illuminated by magical light. From the inner temple the Party went first to a side doorway, a small robing room leading to the living quarters of higher ranking priests.

What first appeared as a largely empty space became the focus of much interest as a hidden room behind a ruined bookcase was discovered by Stoat. A shattered greatsword lay upon a wooden shelf and was found to be immovable by nearly all. Only Alamir – after a quick prayer to Brovadol – managed to remove the weapon’s pieces, taking the artifact with the intent of reforging it when time permitted. With the sword thus liberated, Rarnok aided his friend, wrapping the pieces for protection before the Group moved onward.

Crossing the great inner temple’s width next, a small chapel was found bearing tapestries and mosaics depicting heroes of old. A further secret lay within however, as a hidden door was located behind one of the grand decorations, revealing a corridor filled with the sound of dark chanting. Wicked spectres and men wielding shadowy blades of magic charged forth as the heroes were spotted, having apparently interrupted some manner of evil ritual.

Blinking out of sight with a quickened invisibility spell, the enemy leader rapidly reappeared on the Group’s flank, sending a powerful fireball into the Party’s midst. Rarnok struck next, immediately harnessing the lingering energy from the devastating magic and replicating the spell into the ranks of the cultists, slaying the men mid-charge. Almost simultaneously, a surge of divine power surrounded Maldus, Aspect of Life healing the singed flesh of his friends and destroying the oncoming undead.

Suddenly alone, the enemy’s leader fell next, as Stoat’s deadly projectiles struck home. In the span of mere seconds, the battle had begun and then ended. A half dozen men aided by four spectres and their spellcasting leader, gone. The Aspect powers bestowed by the gods had made them powerful indeed. For his part, Guardian Strond could only mirror the expression of shock and awe last seen on the face of the enemy leader seconds before.

A search of the ritual site revealed little, as the dark magic being invoked was now gone. Only one avenue of exploration remained, a door leading to a small empty room, and nothing more. Thinking that perhaps the way had been sealed, Hilg used his power as the Aspect of Nature, sinking into the stone of the floor and moving beyond the wall. His hunch proved correct, as another chamber lay on the other side, a large council chamber with a rectangular marble table.

Using his druid magic to shape the stone of the wall, the Half-Orc created the passage’s opening anew, permitting the rest of the troupe to continue alongside him. A room identified as a purification chamber lay next, leading finally into an inner sanctum guarded by six suits of plated armor. At the far end of the room, another statue of Brovadol could be seen, atop a large pedestal.

Entering bravely, the Aspects discovered the plated figures to be animated or perhaps alive. The knightly figures dismounted from their raised platforms, and moved to attack. Fueled by potent divine magic, the armored sanctum defenders proved formidable indeed, even to the Aspects themselves. Stoat found his arrows unable to penetrate their thick plating while Maldus learned of their apparently invulnerability to spells.

A massive earth elemental appeared next, summoned from the fingers of Hilg and augmented in size by the power of his Aspect abilities. Taking on four of the six armored defenders, the mammoth summoned creature bought the Party time by way of delaying the advance of two thirds of their foes. A second elemental followed the first, as Hilg sought to tip the scales in the Group’s favor. While capable of damaging the armored behemoths, the powerful strikes of the six proved more than a match for the beings of rock and stone.

Spotting an unwillingness on the part of the defenders to attack him once his comrades had withdrawn, Alamir brandished his holy symbol, ordering the pair of armored guardians before him to stand down. The tactic worked, and the first two of the six roughly stood aside, allowing the cleric access. Moving forward, Alamir readied himself as the last of Hilg’s elementals was destroyed. As before he issued an order to the guardians, demanding their obedience.

The second pair acquiesced, and finally the last, all six lowering into a kneeling position in unison. Alamir had bested a challenge of faith, and the Aspects were rewarded with the treasure cache below Brovadol’s statue before backtracking to the council chamber. A side exit led the Group to a set of barrack quarters, having at one time clearly housed Paladins of The Valiant. Thinking the temple liberated at last, the revelation of yet another secreted corridor gave the heroes pause. How much deeper into the depths of the ground did the temple lead..?



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