The Key to the Tower

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The departure of The Carnival left the party with a focused goal: defeating Vosk. Zephyram began studying the Guides of Dr. Rudolph van Rchten that they had gained from Pacail’s wagon. The good Doctor’s works were insightful to lay people, but generally didn’t offer too much new information to the deva concerning the denizens of darkness. However, the last two volumes contained information on The Mists and the Darklords, a subject new and important to the party.

Van Richten’s Guide to the Darklords had offered theories about why their evil seemed insurmountable and possibly how to destroy them for good. Van Richten believed that the Darklords were connected to Ravenloft through “fetters”: items that related to their fall or depravity. If these items were cleansed, they could be used to destroy the corruption of the Darklord once and for all. What happened to the realm after that was unknown.

The party began thinking about Vosk and his possible fetters. Madame Fortuna’s statement about the “Key to the Tower, The Sword of the Brother, and The Crown of the King” all but gave them the answer. It appeared that fate wanted our players to challenge the Darklord of Miredus! Our heroes deduced quickly that the “Key to the Tower” was the Mantle of the Regent worn by Trogen prior to his death. The “Sword of the Brother” was likely the sword of Hans the First, and the “Crown of the King” no doubt belonged to Tobias IV, the last king of Miredus.

The resting places of these items were thankfully easy to determine. The Key was buried with Trogen in his family’s crypt. The Sword and the Crown were buried with their owners, in the Hall of the Kings outside of Miredus. The party, believing that their actions would draw attention from Vosk’s Champion, decided to go after the Key first and then grab the Sword and the Crown at the same time. There would of course be an inevitable showdown with the Champion, but the players wished to be holding all the fetters when that happened.

The players readied themselves and journeyed through the city at night. They reached the family barrows of Trogen’s line and broke into the crypt. They were shocked to find that another party had also been disrespectful to the tomb’s inhabitants. The crypt had been desecrated and the body of the former regent cast to the floor. Of course, his Mantle was missing. Goodman, increasingly comfortable with talking to corpses, performed a ritual to speak with the body of Trogen. The Regent offered information that a party of dark fey had stole into the chamber from underground and taken the Mantle.

The party found the floor of the tomb cracked and sundered, revealing a tunnel from below. Following the tunnel, they encountered a large stone room with a network of tunnels. Once discovering this, they were assaulted by a troop of dark elves. The heroes triumphed over the sentries and captured the last remaining elf. The creature explained that they were “shadow elves” from the “Shadow Rift” in the Core, and they served their mistress: Fanndís the Queen of the Cold Waste. Undeterred by a simple flashy title, the heroes insisted that the elf take them to his Queen.

Our heroes continued through the inky blackness of the Underdark, with Goodman’s light blazing a path. They encountered a vile dark troll and a band of dark elf marauders. After defeating the evil fey, the party then encountered two insectiod umbra hulks. The beasts’s rending claws were no match for the righteousness of our players.

They fought through these dark forces and burst into the Queen’s throne room. Braziers burning with cold, black fire offered no illumination, but the characters saw Fannis on the black stone throne with a murderous Redcap fairy at her side and the two surrounded by her retainers. The party attempted diplomacy to recover the silver mantle around the Queen’s throat, but the bargain she offered put the city’s children at risk Threats and violence soon followed, and the forces of good clashed against the dark fey. One by one they were defeated and the heroes recovered the Mantle of the Regent from the winter sylph.

Emerging from the darkness, the heroes now had the Key to the Tower. Now they needed the Sword of the Brother and the Crown of the King. And they suspected both items would be found in the King’s Tomb outside of the city.

The Key to the Tower

Lost in the Mists ignatiusvienna