The Boathouse

Chapter 4: Enter the Doomguard
Where the lost heroes encounter the roving bands of Doomguard on the Seas of Fire

Doomguard wallpaper by deusuum
The aspect of Avandra that stood before the heroes had regained her senses and all shadow of madness had been lifted from her countenance. She explained that she had been trapped on this floating isle for millenia in the Elemental Chaos after her battle with the Prince of Storms. Wherever that primordial is now, she doesn’t not know. However this impostor Mephit took advantage of the enchantment of the cupola. To signal passing ships from her temple it would carry a voice across the sea, on this isle the mephit was searching for a valuable treasure that was depicted on the walls. Not knowing that Avandra had kept it to her at all times. The amulet she left with Content Not Found: Quibbs who had calmed her troubled mind. She bestowed on each of the heroes who saved her a magic item that could change their fortunes when most needed.

Then she bestowed her brand on each of the smugglers saying that while she can’t transport them directly to Sigil she bestows them luck on the strange oceans they must cross to make it home. Unfortunately as she comes to Labrith she stops and smiles, and explains she respects the Athar, but cannot give her brand to him.

She fades, and with her the magic that held the Temple of the Weeping Goddess together, as chunks of Earthburg exploded into the chaos and the timber of the temple got ripped into clouds of steam, the heroes were suddenly dragged aboard a ship as they passed out from the fighting and the chaos storm. Upon awakening they found themselves on the fishing boat of [:Drokan | Drokan}, a spiteful if harmless Azer fisherman. His only crewman a mute Goliath called Zrog

While Drokan didn’t know of a doorway to sigil, he knew of the Philosopher’s island. An iceburg not far, where a Ravaasta master of Al-Buraj lived. He said he would take them as far as the island but they would have to work the whole way there. Swabbing decks, manning the rigging, and pulling aboard the ship the hauls of lightning carp that Drokan sold in the bazaars of the City of Brass.

Elemental chaos rift to astral sea

As they neared the iceburg that rested in a plume of caustic acid vapor a ship bearing the sigil of the Doomguard burst forth and attacked them. Drokan cursed the Doomguard, who had dissolved from their previous role in the affairs of Sigil into a band of raiders and pirates. Their exile, instead of diminishing their numbers like the other factions, had only bolstered recruitment.

Failing to out run the ship a boarding party of Doomguard attacked the heroes. Led by their captain, a Windsoul Genasi, four Githzerai swordsmen, two Shadar-Kai archers, and a Dwarf bearing a Greatsword the raiders knocked Drokan unconscious, and turned to attack the heroes and Zrog. Labrith and Lucan scrambled to the masts and rained down attacks from above while Zrog and Quibbs engaged the Doomguard maruaders hand to hand. In the end they defeated the boarding party and the Doogmuard ship retreated. The heroes pressed on to the iceburg and find the Philosopher at it’s heart.

As they dismebarked they entered a long cave, a tunnel that led deep into the heart of the floating chunk of ice. Lit only be the flickering light of a sunrod the shadows of the tunnel loomed in close, yet there was no sign of any life to be found. As the tunnel opened up into a chamber the heroes found themselves face to face with a great blue Slaad. Slaad
Trying to reason with this frog creature of pure chaos seemed uneventful, but the monster seemed uninterested in making a meal out of the characters for the moment. So after they traded nonsense words with the Slaad they continued through the tunnel to where it opened up into a gorge deep in the center of the iceburg. Walls of pure ice shot up to the sky, and at one end of the gorge a cave that showed signs of being inhabited stood.

As the heroes made their way to the cave a wall of ice shot up. From inside the cries of a Ravaasta came screaming at the heroes for luring the Slaad to his cave. Sure enough the Slaad suddenly appeared, showing no recognition of the characters but clearly aggressive this time, launching himself across the ice. The heroes lept into action, fortunately the Slaad lost his footing and skidded out across the ground. Zrog brought the full weight of his Bastard Sword on the frog creature keeping it prone while Labrith and Lucan fired off at it. The crazed Ravaasta however shot forth bolts of chaotic energy at the heroes hoping to chase them away and bring the Slaad with it. To compound matters a pair of Doomguard who had been watching the battle dropped down on ropes to exact revenge on the heroes. Despite dispatching the Doomguard, the Slaad was only just starting to show signs of wear, when suddenly it seemed to lose all interest in the battle and headed off randomly across the gorge. The heroes calmed the Ravaasta and convinced him the Slaad was gone and the ice wall was lowered allowing the heroes to enter.

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Chapter 3 The Impostor Prince
Where the Heroes find that all is not what it seems in the Temple of the Weeping Goddess

As the heroes, accompanied by the cat Zelda ventured into the upper reaches of the temple the winds continued to howl and the cries of the Prince of Storms rang out throughout the earthmote. As they explored the upper floors of the temple they found murals of mosaics depicting Avandra, but as none of them were particularly versed in Religious knowledge the meaning was lost on them.

As Lucan Stellos opened a door he almost fell to the ground below as the door led to a demolished area of the temple. Continuting past the sanctuary where Avandra had been beheld they characters stole up stealthily to the room where the Prince of Storms could be heard bellowing. Peering inside they spotted minions of the prince, elemental creatures of air and water and spinning vortexes of wind guarded the cupola where the prince was belowing orders from. The heroes lept into action and with arrows flying and the magic song and curses being hurled the smashed through the creatures. During the melee Zelda the cat made a beeline for the cupola. As the heroes fought the bellows that came forth from the cupola rocked them with thunderous bursts, while skittering strikes of lightning glanced down from below.

The heroes bolted up the stairway to face the Prince only to find, not a great Primordial, but a tiny mephit whose voice was magnified by the enchantment of the cupola into thunderous blasts. Suffering arrows and spells the mephit was finally cut down by Quibbs. Who stared the mephit down at the end of his sword. Before the could interrogate the diminutive imp, the cupola filled with light and the aspect of Avandra came into view, no longer weeping but smiling upon the heroes.

Mephit8

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Chapter 2: Entering the Sanctuary
Where the Heroes come face to face with a Goddess, mad with grief

With one hand she reached out an accusatory finger that drew heroes to her altar, while the other hand conjured up wrathful blasts of divine light to punish the heroes she called defilers in an incomprehensible madness. The undead ended their dance and began to attack the heroes. With a few well placed arrows and eldritch blasts the ancient sailor corpses fell, however the Goddess herself could not be harmed. Dragged through divine power before her altar the heroes frantically implored the Goddess to recognize her error that they were not her enemy. The Warlock attempted to lie to the goddess that they were there to worship her, but she saw through this trickery. The elf Lucan recognized that as guardian of sailors she was acting out of character, this startled the Goddess’ aspect as she began to doubt her treatment of the heroes the Changeling called out for mercy as a sailor like those she was sworn to protect. As the Goddess came to her senses she vanished, but not before she smiled at Content Not Found: Quibbs. Quibbs suddenly noticed an opal pendant surrounded in platinum around his neck. Secreting it away under his chainmail he hid it from his party members.

Dretch.gif

The party continued to scour the temple when they came across the dretches that had been enslaved by the Storm Prince. Cloaked in a sickening miasma their demonic power seemed to be too much for the party, but the Dwarven Knight of the Unicorn strode forth and swinging her warhammer engaged in a brutal clash with the demonspawn. Struggling to go toe to toe with the swarm of dretches she protected the others who slung sword and spell and together they vanquished the miserable abyssians.

As they began to make there way to the second floor of the temple where the Storm Princes commands were bellowing forth from the North West tower the heroes chanced upon a cat named Zelda who they freed from the rubble. After healing the scared feline the cat began to follow them. Strangely fearless about the primordial who haunted the upper floors.

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Chapter 1: Shipwrecked
Where a battle on the Astral Sea set the destiny of our heroes in motion

While on a run the Boathouse smugglers experienced difficulty with their spelljamming helm. [[:Therad’luun]] negotiated a deal with some some passing rogue devils to purchase a spelljamming helm, however once installed on the ship it didn’t work well and was constantly stalling from some mystical interference. Nervous about the cargo on board from their latest caper the loaded the booty on the boathouse’s astral skiff and bet on making it back to Sigil with speed while Dusk and the junior crew tried to sail back to the Sigil portal on the malfunctioning spelljammer. Frustrated with the assignment Dusk weighed anchor over a color veil to Erishani and went to meet up with the Eladrin pirate queen Mel an old friend of his. Tasking the junior crew with watching the ship. While waiting the crew witnessed a portal open to the Elemental Chaos, and surprisingly quickly after a large comet like object streaked towards them.

The object revealed itself to be a giant city on a ship that came to a sudden stop right above them. From the ship descended a tall but stocky green humanoid with emerald skin and two faces looking out of both sides of his head. Wielding a maul in two hands he easily smashed through the smugglers and wrenched from the spelljamming helm a glowing shard while mentioning the name “Lakal.”

Before the heroes knew what happened the creature was gone and their ship was loosing it’s astral buoyancy and crashing towards the portal to the Elemental Chaos. They were moving so fast that the Elf and the Githyanki were unable to grab any of the riggings, as sails and masts snapped and half. Thankfully due to the quick thinking of the Revenant wizard they lept on to a Floating Disk ritual and suffered only minorly due to the impact of landing on an Earthburg in the elemental chaos.

Temple of avandra.jpg

Surrounded on all sides by fire and scalding steam, they began to explore the small island which was dominated by a giant temple in the center. Despite the whipping storms two voices could be heard, a weeping female voice, and the bellowing commands of some other creature. As they made their way around the isle they found the island was surrounded by ships crashed upon the shore, now frozen in a grey metallic ice. The deserted ships were being ravaged by a Changeling Dretch herder who had also crashed on the island who knew that the voices belonged to a Goddess of light who terrified his dretches, and a primordial known as the Prince of Storms who was enslaved half his herd to search the island for a stone. The changeling joined the group and they continued to explore the temple, coming across signs that the terrible Goddess was an aspect of the Good Goddess Avandra. When they entered the main sanctuary they came across dancing undead sailors and the vision of the Goddess herself. At first they were unnoticed, but when the Elf laid his hand on the weeping Goddess’ shoulder she exploded in anger. Avandra.jpg

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