Our group decided to a long rest during our trek towards Devil’s Deep. Kas alerted us of enemies during his watch; it’s nice to know the skirmisher is keeping out of our belongings and watching over us as we rest. The enemies turned out to be a large handful of kobolds, which we defeated and continued to rest through the night without further trouble.
Morning came and we began traveling through the forest, which was difficult with the muddy terrain and rainy weather. We came upon Hardwick Grove and spoke to the leader and fort shaman Fareg and Fordava Highlander. The fort shaman carried a symbol that looked similar to those of Asmodeus, but with a Dwarf instead of a man. The shaman told me that someone who went by Pyotr taught Highlander of Asmodeus. I gave the shaman my holy book of Ellina and explained how the fort is already following some Ellina doctrines, in hopes of the shaman deciding to teach the fort about Ellina.
After we gathered in the morning and left the fort; we made our way south to the Hills of Iron. We were stopped by the sight of a graveyard in the woods and decided to explore since the graveyard seemed out of places by not being owned by any nearby towns of villages. Three statues stood out so we gathered around to inspect them closer. One of the statues had two gems in the eye sockets and when Ithryn reached out for the gems, a flash of light shot out!
Waking up in front of the statues, it seems that we all had dreams about a relative or someone close to us. Once we were all fully awake, Steve decided to steal the gems! I asked him to return the gems since I don’t believe in grave robbing and forewarned him that I’d take the gems from him by force if necessary, but he refused to return them. Things got physical and Kas decided to join in by hitting me over the head, but that didn’t help Steve! Imtari announced that he replaced the gems with gold pieces so we could all move on. Making our way to the Hills of Iron, we crossed an old bridge and camped at the other end. During the night we were attacked by strange creatures (turned out to be ken kus?) that stole any horse they could! After a long battle we defeated the creatures and didn’t lose any horses; which thank Ellina because my horse had all of my food! We camped the rest of the night without trouble.
We ran into two dwarven miners named Muffy and Drimy and they lead us to their camp for the night. The 3rd we woke and immediately started our trek, but decided to leave the horses at the miners’ camp. Made it just a day away from the Hills of Iron and had a safe night.
Our group was able to make it into the town of Devil’s Deep, which is just an absolute horrible place on this land; the buildings were gloomy and the very ground of the town is unholy! Kas suggested that we should attempt a low profile by acting shady (seemed to fit the town), but he lead us to a bad location, we talked to the wrong people and accidentally joined The Game, a contest of Astaroth and we’re marked within the Astaroth temple. I immediately felt Ellina frown upon me after being marked and suggested that we leave this temple, quickly locate who we came for (Vasha) and GTFO with him as The Game was about to begin and I did not want to participate in such an evil ‘game’.
We were tipped off that Vasha may be in the nearby temple of Hela and left to look for him and Ithryn (who for some strange reason left to wander this dreadful place alone) at that temple. After Rowena acted pretty for the giant guards and said please, we were granted access to the Hela temple and took a sharp left and began exploring. We ran into the temple barracks, which was filled with troops and bad news for us since we had Diesa, our Dwarf barbarian, and Hela hates Dwarfs! Luckily we had Steve, our crippled Gnome wizard, who made Diesa invisible so she could hopefully dodge guards on our way through the barracks. The troops avoided our group, thanks to my intimidating presence and displaying my military rank.
While continuing to explore the temple past the barracks, we ran into a few gibbering mouthers that we easily defeated and came to a dead end. Doubling back towards the temple entrance, we ran into a wealthy giant that took a few moments to take down, but we looted 21 pp and three gems from em’ and found the temple prison. Vasha was inside a cell, I guess because most citizens in Devil’s Deep find him annoying, along with a few Humans who were looking near death and a Dwarf; all in separate cells. Diesa insisted that we free the Dwarf and bring him with us. I advised again it as we were in a temple that hated Dwarfs and Dwarfs are notoriously known to be stealthy, but was out voted and we ended up bring the Dwarf along. I gave what food I had on me to the Humans and we quickly left the prison and began looking for a way to escape Devil’s Deep.
We double timed it to the temple entrance, but upon exiting the temple, we were greeted by Aluin, a powerful demon bitch, as well as a good number of guards and temple priest! Surrounded and outnumbered, we surrendered and were marched to Astaroths’ temple and put into the arena that The Game takes place in. I don’t remember exactly what happened in that arena as I was stunned when Aluin threw Ithryn’s head at our feet! I know that words were exchanged and we were allowed to leave Devil’s Deep peacefully, but without Vasha and cursed by the demon bitch.
Once we were out of Devil’s Deep we headed back towards the dwarven mining camp to collect our horses and discuss the curse that was laid upon us. The group decided to travel fast back to Tiara – City of Swords to inform Katy of our misfortunes and report on the mission we received to retrieve Vasha. Our horses became ill and weak from the fast pace and no rest, so we all decided to stop back at Lady Scomi’s castle in hopes of resting for the night. We arrived early in the morning and I offered to work for the day if my group was allowed to stay the night and she tended to our horses. She allowed our group to stay and offered each of us a Lady Wood Token and I was able to sleep with the Lady herself that night! An awesome reward if I do say so myself…
Morning came and we got ready to depart. Lady Scomi asked if I would stay with her indefinitely, but I had to refuse as I was in the middle of a mission and could not just abandon my duties. I thought of returning to her once I am finished with my adventuring life. Once we were ready, we left towards Tiara and arrived safely. The group immediately wanted to report to Katy. We informed her of our failure and exchanged some information about our curse and possible ways to rid ourselves of it. Katy suggested that Alex the Bard may know of a possible way, but he would not be in Tiara for another month or so. We decided to stay till Alex arrived and I volunteered my time to the Church to gain kudos.