Rites Of Passage

Session #18: The Gates of Neverwinter

With the siege of Luskan in full swing, the Quartet decided what to do next. After Emily fell at the reluctant hands of Bud, both Constance and another mysterious young girl named Nazzah emerged from her remains. The group remains ever watchful, dodging patrols of undead as the deliberate on their next course of action. Nazzah offers the Quartet a reward if they bring her back to the House of Knowledge in Neverwinter. Constance wants nothing more than to get back to Mirabar.

After much talk, the group decides to head south to Neverwinter (and to get their phat loots!). Illythian explains to Constance that heading south to Neverwinter and going east through the Neverwinter Wood is a much safer route to return to Mirabar. She reluctantly agrees and the group trudges south….. except for Bud! He seems to have slipped away during the night without even an explanantion.

One man down and low on supplies, the group continues south down the High Road toward Neverwinter. Heading south without incident, the (now) Trio passes several encampments. It seems that the Lord of Neverwinter has sent his Mintarian mercenaries to guard the High Road in case the Thayans unwisely travel south toward Neverwinter. All in all, the trip was exhausting but uneventful. The Trio attempted to talk to Nazzah several times but she remained secretive about her account of what happened. She only told them that she was known as a “Star Child” and must return home.

On the last day of travel, the Trio set up camp a short distance off the main road. Everything seemed as it was in the beginning, except this night would be different. Illythian was on watch and noticed that Nazzah had slipped away. He heard her speaking some distance away and snuck over to investigate….. and what he saw blew him away (literally). Nazzah was arguing with 2 figures, one fiendish and one angelic. Each one was pleading with her to come back with them to their respective planes. As Nazzah refused she got more and more upset. Out of nowhere, and Nazzah began to emit and energy around her… the very ground beneath her begain to shake and the air around her seemed to swirl and crackle with energy.

The 2 planar beings continued their bid to take her home, only upsetting Nazzah further. Seemingly unable to contain this building energy, she let loose a scream that pierced the night. Suddenly, beautifully feathered wings sprouted from her back, but just as quickly, the feathers aged and decayed until all that was left was skeletal wings. Before Illythian could even react, the energy that had been building around Nazzah exploded outward. Illythian was blasted back off his feet and almost killed.

The explosion awoke the others and when they went to investigate, they found Nazzah on her knees in a crater, charred earth and wood all around her. She looked physically drained and smoke was whisping off her body.

The group decided to not press Nazzah on what happened in her weakened state and press on to Neverwinter the next day….

After a tenday of travel, they finally reach the grande gates of Neverwinter. The group doesn’t waste any time seeing the sights and go straight to the House of Knowledge. The House of Knowledge is huge circular building that is one part university, one part study, and one part bard college. They were greeted happilly by Professor Caralaan who invited everyone in to stay and replenish from their long journey.

While they were there, they received a reward for bringing Nazzah back… and they also learned the why Nazzah was taken as a Star Child. The Trio learned that there is more than 1 “Star Child” and Nazzah was kidnapped by another Star Child names Esius and given to the Arcane Brotherhood for their ritual against the Thayans.

During the next couple of days, the Trio met several other members of the The House of Knowledge including a young portly human named Hogworth who is an apprentice to Caralaan. Both Hogworth and Caralaan are fascinated by Illythian’s appearance and would like to study his peculiar nature further. Pavo took a couple of days to study more of the Fugue plane and learn more about his research. And Velnaar, more conflicted than ever, took a time out to re-evaluate his very nature.

On the 2nd night, Illythian received a note from one of Caralaan’s apprentices. The note stated that Caralaan had discovered some exciting news regarding Illythian and to come to his study. Excited and curious, Illythian walked to Caralaan’s office, but discovered a gruesome sight. Caralaan was on his chair at this desk, his skull cracked open and his brain cleanly removed.

From the darkness, a sinister creature slowly emerged. It was the thing of nightmares. A tall slender Mind Flayer stood before Illythian. It had 6 tentancles jutting from it’s octopus shaped head that were about 5ft long. It’s long clawed hand carrys a staff of twisted black metal that seems to ebb with psionic energy. It telepathically speak to Illythian, but Illythian would have none of it.

He immediatly ran out of the room and back down the hall, alerting his companions as he ran past in terror.

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