Sep 28 2012

Chronicles of Netheril, September 22nd, 2012

We departed for Zelbross the day after the feast. We were accompanied by Ashurta and two of her Sand King brethren; all of which looked much healthier following the feast. {As a result of the feast, the DM has granted all three Bedine NPCs a +1 to attack rolls.} Also of note is that Sand King is the name the Bedine use to refer to themselves.

Zelbross – Lord Mutashi’s Ruined Estate

We reached Zelbross without incident, and once there, it wasn’t difficult to find Mutashi’s estate on the outskirts of the abandoned town. The estate, although in ruins, was so massive that you couldn’t miss it even if you tried.

We made our way to the main house thinking it would be a good place to start our search. Once inside, we heard some noises coming from the basement. As we went down to investigate, we ran into a team of Netherese soldiers.

The Netherese were spread out across the basement room and therefore had a tactical advantage over us; we were bunch up on the staircase. Nonetheless we were able to defeat them. Our Sand King allies proved to be quite useful in such a tight spot.

The room itself was empty, except for a large pillar in its centre. On one side of the pillar was an opening that exposed a malfunctioning portal inside an alcove. The doors that had blocked the alcove had been ripped off by the Netherese and cast aside on the floor.

The scroll fragment we were looking for was wedged underneath one of the doors. We were all hesitant to take the fragment, because during the fight, we had noticed that anyone who approached the doors was attacked by a phantom-like creature. Most likely a magical ward designed to protect the portal. A ritual {skill challenge} would have to be performed to deactivate the ward; but in order to perform it properly, we would have to be close enough to the doors for the phantom to attack us.

Ash suggested we simply burn the scroll fragment to prevent the Netherese from getting; but as Ashurta explained, that would not work because the Netherese had the ability to make a new one.

Basically, the only way to prevent them from using the Spiral Gate was to reconstitute the entire ritual scroll and use it to permanently shut down the portal network. Each scroll fragment controlled one of the portals. The fragment we were attempting to obtain controlled Mutashi’s portal, and the fragment we already possessed controlled the third portal whose location we didn’t know.

By using the local fragment, we could open a link between Mutashi’s portal and the one in the ruined temple of Mystra. The fragment in the temple would link the temple’s portal to the third portal; and from that location if we combined the scroll fragments and performed the whole ritual, the Spiral Gate network would be permanently closed. The magic from the ritual scroll would be expended and the Netherese would be unable to rebuild the scroll.

Following Ashurta’s explanation, we performed the ritual to disable the protective ward on the doors. The phantoms attacked us, but we completed the ritual before they could do any real harm. We then lifted the doors and moved them out of the way so that we could take the scroll fragment without damaging it.

With the fragment in hand we took a short rest before activating the portal and travelling to the ruined temple.