27 Haring 27th Year of the Dragon Age
Shadows cast by the fire licked the walls. Dark tentacles that seemed to Boreas to envelop and grope at the companions, as embers danced through the air about the hearth with a grace that belay their creator’s insidiousness; this fire demanded flesh.
The party were momentarily hypnotised by the fire’s seduction, buying more than enough time for the Shades to guard up before committing their dirty deed. Elodie was struck by the weakness cast, but the Shade targeting Boreas fumbled, possibly intimidated by the over-powered-as-fuck warrior. Elodie drew her bow in response, pulling off a stunt in spite of the spell that ailed her. But the arrow whistled past the Abomination’s head and ricocheted off the wall.
The room appeared to darken around the Shits, as the Abomination slowly turned its head towards Mah’jeek venting a foul hiss at him. A sound that seemed to bend, twist and elongate. It took form around the Apostate, and became incandescent – snapping into life and scorching Mah’jeek before burning itself out. In his soul, the mage would long feel the malice with which those flames bit.
The Abomination then stretched out its arms, trembling and jerking its head to a sound of crackling cartilage and bone. The creature’s wrists split open to that sound, and snapped back violently. Blood sprayed out, anointing the group from this most evil font. Out of the gaping wounds bloody sinew and fetid grey soft tissues oozed. From the bones that protruded – like the remnants of trees snapped in two during a storm – dark red tentacles grew. Yeran’s nausea is overcome only by the sudden pain associated with taking a direct hit from a lightning bolt.
“Blood magic?!…” Mah’jeek grunted, as the bolt jumped from Yeran, to Elodie and on to Boreas.
Being first affected, Yeran was the first to recover from the shock. Spurred by the electrical charge echoing through him, Yeran pulled a fast cast out the bag – which was really fucking lucky, as he royally screwed up the first self-heal.
The group dispersed themselves, taking care to reduce the risk of taking further damage en masse.
Boreas owned it like a ‘roid raging gorilla and spanked the Abomination as if it were a naughty Circle child who needed to be taught a lesson. While this ensued, Mah’jeek cast a Walking Bomb on the Shade in the corner closest to him, Elodie and Yeran. It stuck, and both Shades continued to guard up.
The Shade opposite Boreas cast Weakness on the warrior, whose nostrils flared in rage at this insult. The bombed Shade mimiced its counterpart, casting on Elodie. But she was unaffected, and released a second arrow.
True to form, she missed.
The Abomination turned to face it only real threat – Boreas. It released another hiss and Boreas was wreathed in flames. It then let loose a bolt of lightning, intended for a singular target. Boreas staggered back dodging out of the way. His nostrils quivered so fucking hard.
Yeran let loose an Arcane Lance on the Abomination but missed. Boreas’ response to the Abomination’s lightning bolt consisted of a rage induced Mighty Blow, combined with a Lightning attack. Mah’jeek, feeling a need to make up for the last time he encountered their kind focused, only on the Shades, and cast Walking Bomb on the second. Both failed to resist the spell and were further damaged. One Shade guards yet again and attempted to cast Weakness on Elodie, but the spell failed. The other Shade changed the record and attempted to cast Drain Mah’jeek, but as the mage’s will is strong , he resisted the Shade’s attempt.
It turned out, third time was the charm, and Elodie’s attack struck true, forcing the Abomination to fall into the fire. The flames burning high and intensely hot as screeching damnation echoed throughout the chamber. The foul Abomination was no more.
Yeran prepares a healing spell, while Boreas’ blade sliced through a Shade, causing its form to whisp a little, before reforming. Mah’jeek decided enough is enough, and fast cast two Arcane Bolts, killing the Shade instantly.
The remaining Shade failed to resist the lingering spell, and as it exploded Boreas is rocked by it’s ethereal form. At that moment the Abomination’s carcass exploded, spending forth a wave of fire that broke on the group.
The battle done with Mah’jeek picked up the book they had been studying prior to the Abomination’s appearance. The group took a moment to catch their breath and then continued on through the Restricted Section. On exiting the room the party closed ranks, proceeding slowly and carefully through the corridors. Each of them looked around, but in the pressing darkness they perceived nothing of the dangers ahead.
Elodie stumbled into a trap, and while nimble and quick, she took some damage. Boreas did the same, but was less graceful in his escape. This clumsiness resulted in flames lapping across and beneath his armor, forcing a low growl to emanate from deep in his chest.
Elodie scurried around, disabling both the triggered traps before the group continued to inchworm their way through the basement. Along the way, Elodie continued to engage in her obsession with barrels. Then suddenly, they heard an all too familiar “click”, as Boreas triggered another trap. This time there were no flames, but darts. A flurry of clinking sounds disturbed the otherwise still air.
One of the darts found its way through a gap in the warrior’s armor, and struck him directly. Boreas looked down at his wound, examining it for a moment, before placing two fingers on either side of the torn flesh, and tearing the dart from his body with the other hand.
After a bit of dying, and a bit of healing, the Shits’ become aware that they are flanked by some very real looking spider statues, set atop plinths. Boreas – being the group’s resident juicer – swung at one of the statues. His blade carried through the air with the grace of a novice swordsman. To nobody’s great surprise, his sword stopped dead on making contact with the spider. Oddly, it did not bounce away.
Yeran tosses a heal spell at Elodie, who proceeded to set off another trap, much to the Circle Mage’s frustration. For some inexplicable reason the Rogue then decided to pick up a barrel, and put it back down again. The party stared at Elodie in silence, each wearing a quizzical look.
After a little more fumbling down the passage, a very live and mobile spider appears. Elodie quickly slipped into the shadows, disappearing momentarily before reappearing – outside of the spider’s periphery – and unleashing a backstab on the arachnid. It bled heavily from the wound she left.
Mid way through this attack Elodie noticed the four other spiders – all once as still as stone – now moving. Mah’jeek became aware also, dropping his torch, and then shooting an Arcane Lance at one of them. At that moment silver looking threads shot through the air. Yeran took a load to his face and was immobilised.
So began the Battle of the Silver Fish.
With uncharacteristic grace, Boreas evaded the pearly gloop that squirted from the darkness, but in so doing relinquished the opportunity to anticipate one of the visible spider’s attacks. It bit Boreas, injecting him with potent venom.
As Elodie maneuvered and drew her bow, Mah’jeek freed Yeran from his sticky prison. Boreas charged the orange looking arthropod, Mighty Blowing the shit out of it. Another shot of web flew towards Yeran but this time he dodges the spider’s silky spray, however Elodie and Boreas both fell victim to the stinking ejaculate.
Yeran walked up behind Elodie – who was still immobilised – smelled her hair a little (Ed: totally not a stalker), before freeing her from the web. Elodie threw Yeran a contemptuous look, then used that rage to fire at the spider that opened this battle. But in her ire, she missed. Mah’jeek then sent an Arcane Lance at the very same creature while Boreas freed himself.
Fate mocked the party, with both Boreas and Mah’jeek being attacked and becoming immobilised immediately after their small victories. Yeran attempted to free Boreas with his small effeminate hands, but to nobody’s surprise, he was unsuccessful. Yeran put those slender digits to good use by picking his nose. Elodie shot an arrow at one of the arachnids, killing it. Then ensued a war of attrition; entrapment, freedom, attack, counter. Eventually the spiders were defeated. But the victory was staggeringly short lived, as a huge explosion teared through the corridor with Elodie and Mah’jeek bearing the brunt of it, while Boreas and Yeran escaped harm. Boreas began to walk away and Yeran hid behind Boreas, his favorite meat shield, following him closely.
Using their better judgement, the group came together and progressed. Until yet another spider was revealed to them. However this time, the ratio is 4:1, and the eight legged creature was soon destroyed.
Much to the party’s confusion, when they doubled back they came upon a dead end. After discussing briefly what to do, they head back to where the barrels exploded. Only to find the wall that had originally been there had now disappeared. With haste they exited the basement, and were glad to be able to breathe untainted air.
They bumped into Jorvac almost immediately. He inquired as to where the party had been. After they had told him they had been through the restricted section the old mage frowned, and demanded to know where they had acquired the key to such a highly restricted part of the tower, not to mention why we needed to venture to such a place.. He was told the story of how Jorvac himself handed over the key, that the group might accomplish their task. Which jogged his memory a little, he was extremely apologetic for not mentioning the traps but was deeply concerned to hear of the Abomination and pleaded that the party not tell anyone about it as it would surely bring the Templars wrath upon the mages in the Circle.
The party rested up, except for Mah’jeek who acted shady as fuck and started scribbling from the text recovered. Yeran kept staring back at Mah’jeek suspiciously. His assumption that the Qunari understood anything about what he was copying both baffled and impressed Yeran.
Yeran decided to leave him to it as it had been a strange day. He then went to talk to his mentor, Wynne.
Meanwhile Elodie and Boreas had a stimulating chat with the Tranquil.
Yeran pestered Wynne for some lyrium potions but she told the young mage that ‘she’ll see what she can do’ with the subtext that Yeran read as ‘learn to make do, noob!’
After a few day Grigor arrived and the party were summoned to brief him, Irving and Greagoir on their findings. Before they were allowed in to the meeting they spied Wynne and Grigor discussing something. After Grigor had inquired as to the whereabouts of Brannek and been introduced to Elodie, Yeran was asked to tell the panel of the Shits findings.
They discussed the book they found, a journal of a Tevinter accolyte. It described a group of blood mages by the names of Davrik, Gianna, and led by Falinesti. They had sought to build an army of Darkspawn Abominations and use it to build a new world order however their plans were leaked and they were all killed before they could assemble an army. All records of them were expunged. The dating on the journal indicated that these events happened before the fall of the Tevinter Imperium. It was surmised by Irving that this new group must have been able to find enough information about the original research to attempt it again and had taken up the mantles of the original Tevinter mages.
After telling the story, the party was excused while Grigor, Irving and Greagoir could discuss an action plan. They waited outside for the next hour, while a raucous argument could be heard (but not deciphered) by the group.
Finally the Shits were summoned.
Grigor informed the party that he believed he had found the possible location of Gianna prior to arriving at the Circle – a small village called Dandervale. He instructed the party to meet him in Briarham in 6 weeks so that they could then travel on to Dandervale together…