Forgotten Things

The Townhouse of DOOM!

…Where Davian snuck in to find a room with several goblins milling about. He managed to eliminate one of the scrawny creatures, but before he could take down another he heard the hissing of a pair of reptilian drakes attacking Pint at the front door. As soon as the sounds of battle filled the room, two doors on the east wall opened, a large half-orc wielding a longbow emerging from one, a mated pair of razorclaw shifters from the other. These three had dyed their hair a garish red-orange; perhaps they belonged to a local gang? The fight went well for our squad at first, but things soon became critical as Kel’iah was taken down by the surviving drake; the half-orc kept muttering “wizard dies first,” and loosing arrows at Veneficus; and Swaggart dropped the female shifter, but her mate then focused all his rage on the Cleric, charging across the room and leaping over furniture to tackle Swaggart, ignoring all attacks by any others, only to be physically dragged off the Templar to a corner and finished by Plunkett. Soon after, all the enemies lay dead.
After a short rest to catch their breath and patch themselves up, the team was shocked to hear what sounded like a lightning strike from upstairs, followed by what could only be described as an earthquake, the walls and floor bucking wildly. Immediately a voice could be heard shouting, “What’s happening? Check those over there!”
Again, Pint and Davian led the way, creeping silently upstairs, where a peek through the double door revealed a room consisting of four corridors surrounding a central block. In each corner, tables covered with components of some kind of eldritch machine hummed and crackled with arcane energy, which with increasing frequency would build up to a critical point, causing a discharge of black lightning from one corner to another, leaving flash spots across their vision and the scent of ozone in the air. As soon as the bolt stopped, one of the two corners would suffer the earthquake-like effect, the floor and walls rippling like water out from the table of equipment.
Standing in front of the table closest to the door was an emaciated, horrific figure out of a nightmare. Possibly human at one time, the thing now had a pair of tentacles emerging from its back, and where its eyes should have been there were only dark, ruined sockets. Despite this, it immediately turned when Davian snuck into the room and shouted a warning to whoever else was there. From around two corners charged two humans, and the three tried to hold our heroes to the landing. Once the dolgaunt fell, it was a fairly simple matter to convince the two “humans,” actually twin changelings, to surrender. Speaking quickly, Davian convinced the two changelings, Gan and Xan, that they’d been had. Not so simple was disabling the machine, as the frequency of the lightning discharges and quakes were increasing rapidly. The entire contraption was a huge bomb, designed to destroy the base of Dalannan Tower, bringing down the mile-high structure and potentially a significant portion of the entire Menthis Plateau, killing tens of thousands!
Gan and Xan seemed to be just two unemployed dockworkers, who took the job because the pay was too good to pass up; even if they had died, what little they had received would feed their families for weeks. Davian gave them a handy sum of gold, hiring them to be his eyes and ears on the docks of Sharn. He also managed to learn the name of their employer: one Aric Blacktree, one-time aide to Lord Major Bren ir’Gadden, missing these last four years since his ordeal and rescue from the hands of dolgrims who chained him in the aura of a mysterious, dragonmark-like sigil found underneath the broken flagstones of the Tower of Scars, now within the borders of the Mournland.
This crisis has been averted, but the squad now has more questions than they have answers. What is Blacktree up to? More important, why would he want to bring down the tower that houses Morgrave University at its heights? What of the dead professor’s magical journal, and his killer, or the killer’s employer? Are they the same person, maybe Blacktree? Are these events even related?

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Pyrik

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