After defeating the Dracolich, the party decided to take a short rest and heal up. It isn’t every day that you face an undead dragon. The rest of the group still wanted to rest awhile, but Nixero, Shemuel, Sarin, and Faust decided it was time to move along. The four of them packed their things and headed into the next room. As the group entered, they each felt something tugging on their mind. Sarin and Shemuel both fell unconscious on to the floor immediately, but Nixero and Faust were able to shake off the effects of whatever just happened.
Shemuel woke and found himself back home. He was at his farm, and his wife was standing in the doorway beckoning him. He thought this was a dream of some kind, but the longer he stayed and the more he felt happiness from seeing his wife again…the more it felt real. Eventually, he was consumed by the dream, and it became his new reality. For almost an entire year he lived here in this world. He did nothing but be with his wife for an entire year, what more could a man ask for? Then, one day, he found himself outside his home watching it burn. His heart sank and he felt ultimate dread. He remembered now. This happened before somewhere, and he knew that he would find a corpse in the fire.
Faust and Nixero were now engaged in one of the most fearsome battles they had yet faced. They were battling a Mind Flayer. Both Nixero and Faust had taken quite a bit of damage at this point, but so had the mind flayer. Suddenly, the flayer cast a spell on Faust, causing him to become paralyzed. Faust could do nothing but watch as his comrade battled this thing head on. It wasn’t looking good for Nixero. The blood dripping from his head was getting into his eyes and he had a hard time making out where the flayer was even standing. At one point, Nixero attacked way off point, and the flayer grabbed Nixero’s sword and swallowed it whole. Feeling unprotected and desperate, Nixero drew Graveyard from the Scabbard.
Shemuel had ventured into his house and retrieved the corpse of his wife as he had done once before. His heart broke and he was left with nothing…again. Suddenly he felt that something was wrong. He couldn’t place it, but something was off, it wasn’t how it should have been remembered. Then suddenly, the corpse began to move. He dropped it on to the ground and his wife suddenly had life flowing through her veins once again. Shemuel’s heart was taking so much stress from the constant ups and downs. She stood and drew two daggers from her cloak. Confused, Shemuel put his shield up and blocked her attacks. He made no offense maneuver against her save for shoving her with his shield. Out of the blue, her arms became tentacles, and Shemuel knew for certain that this had to be a dream or a spell of some kind. He ran towards the thing, mace out and ready to kill.
Shemuel woke in the corner of the room. He sat up and saw Nixero putting away Graveyard with a mind flayer standing in front of him. Suddenly the mind flayer’s body broke off into four pieces as if some thing had slashed an X into his body. His body fell to the ground, and then Nixero dropped to his knees, exhausted from the use of Graveyard. Faust fell tot he ground with cramps in his legs from being paralyzed for so long. They looked over at each other and then to Sarin, who was laying on the ground slowly being covered in Ice. Without hesitating, Shemuel ran over to Sarin and used the flayer’s lingering influence to allow himself into her unconscious mind. Nixero and Faust followed shortly after.
After entering the dream, they found Sarin inside of the Red Manor. Everything was engulfed in fire. There were multiple instances of Sarin inside the manor however, and it was difficult to tell which one would be the real one, or at least the one in charge. Suddenly the group saw Ignis walk into the room as an ice wizard. He starting to cast ice spells on the manor, slowly engulfing it into a wintery grave. Faust gave a speech to Sarin, explaining to her that Ignis was her enemy and she was more than he could have ever been. It seemed to have worked somewhat, as 3 instances of Sarin disappeared, but that was not enough. \
Nixero gathered his courage, for he knew now it was his time. He grabbed the nearest Sarin and he held her in his arms. He spoke to her in a voice true and sure. He told her of all the happiness she gave him, even if they were just traveling along the road together. He told her of all the times she had made him laugh. It was just a job and a mission when he first started out on this journey, but now it was more than that. He wanted to spend more time with her, go on more adventures. He confessed his love for her, and in that instant, everyone woke up. They were back in the dungeon once again. Nixero had saved Sarin with love, and they instantaneously started kissing each other with passion that none could comprehend.
After traveling through a trapped hall of psychic force, the group made it to a room with a pool of water in the center. Standing at the floor of the pool, were two large tentacle monsters, ready to be fed. The group moved in for their attack. Nixero felt the lingering effects of wielding Graveyard, and used an energy surge to cast an ice spell at one of the ropers. It created an ice blast so strong, that it encased it with ice and shattered the block along with the roper into a hundred pieces. Everyone including Nixero had surprise written on their faces.
They battled the second roper for what seemed like ages. It used its tentacles to snatch them off their feet and dangle them in the air. Suddenly Faust got fed up with the whole thing and decided to use telekinesis. He shoved it to the wall, splattering it everywhere. With the enemies dead, they decided to look around the room. In the corner of the room, they found a slit in the wall, just big enough for Graveyard to fit into. Around the slit were 12 white stones glowing in a circle. Above the circle was written “Courage is all it takes for man to overcome certain destruction”
Nixero thought it would be a god idea to find out anymore information he could about the sword, so he decided to insert the sword and turn it like a key. As he did, a small opening appeared on the wall next to him revealing a small leather pouch. At the same time, Nixero’s conscious mind went somewhere different. He found himself in a forest walking along a path with a small child. The child seemed very wise however, and told Nixero that he may ask 3 questions. Once Nixero had asked his questions, he was suddenly tackled to the ground by Shemuel (whom saw Nixero was no longer himself).
Nixero gathered himself and told the party about the information he had received. The party then decided it was Nixero’s time to give up the sword. They all agreed that he seemed a little too friendly with the sword, and that probably wasn’t goof for any one. It took some convincing on everyone’s part to get Nixero to hand over the sword to Shemuel, who had made some poor decisions in the past, but he allowed it. He gave Shemuel some words of advice as he handed it over, and proved to everyone that he had not succumbed to the will of the sword. Then, Shemuel was knocked unconscious and taken to the field where he would speak to Bloodthirst/Graveyard
The sword and Shemuel spoke, but they were not friendly words. The sword told Shemuel that it would destroy him if he ever tried to destroy the sword before every last bit of Vecna’s power and influence was erased from the material plane. Shemuel told the sword point blank that he planned on destroying the sword form the beginning, and his thought process had not changed. The sword then sent Shemuel back to consciousness, and immediately resumed its attempts to take the wielder over. Shemuel shrugged the attempts off with the help of the Scabbard. The group then divided the treasure among them and decided it was time to get moving.
T-t-tim the P-pegasus
Before entering the next room, the rest of the party finally caught back up with them. The four of them caught them up on what they missed (including a lot of XP). They then proceeded to enter the next room. After entering, they were surprised to see a Pegasus standing on the other end of the room. He greeted the characters as they crossed a bridge spanning over a chasm in the floor. He told them that they needed to be rewarded for making this far in the dungeon. Hesitant of taking handouts from anything in Mt. Nex, the party proceeded with as much caution as a party of this caliber could muster.
They approached the Pegasus and tried to speak with it. Apparently the Pegasus had a name, and a stutter. He called himself T-t-tim. He told them about the wonders that he could reward them with, seeing as he was a pegasus and all. As the party approached the pegasus exclaimed “fools!” and ran towards them to attack.
They battled Tim, but it was not a very long battle. A Pegasus does not have a very good build for combat. However, as Tim started to fall to the ground when he was defeated, something terrible happened that the party could not have foreseen. Tim morphed into a Beholder! A beholder can wipe a party of unprepared adventurers, or more if they aren’t strong enough. Luckily the party was strong, but they would be in for a fight for sure this time.
They began the battle, but right from the beginning it looked grim for our heroes. They attacked the beast and maneuvered around its anti-magic field and attacked with precision and tactics. Most of the magic users were rendered completely useless due to the cone, but they helped in every way they could. Just at a critical moment, Faust decided he wanted nothing more to do with this being and left the room. The rest of the party stood their ground and kept slamming it with all they had. The beholder was using its eye ray abilities and targeted most of his attacks against Shemuel, the bearer of Graveyard.
They party fought long and hard, taking just as much damage as they were dealing. The creature was tough and the party was not going to give up, not here and definitely not now. They had sacrificed so much to be here in Mt. Nex, to end the mystery behind the bluesword, and to avenge members of their friends and family. The dug deep and found the courage within them to keep fighting the losing battle which they started. Suddenly something very unexpected happened. The beholder gurgled and fell onto the ground. All of its eyes rolled back into its stalks and head. The flesh on the creature sagged, and it was no more. In its place was a white gem, the same size as a socket on the portal the group first inspected before going into one of the wings.
The group has finished with the west wing of floor 2, but what else could be lurking behind the corner? Can there be anything worse than a mind flayer, beholder, and a dracolich all in the same corridor? Find out next time!