((For this session, Sin (Sintera Barona)’s player did not join until the third encounter. Otherwise, all players were in attendance. DM machvergil did not play Alia Dawnedge as a PC to keep the party size to 5))
((This adventure was 5 encounters worth half the XP necessary to go from level 15 to 16))
Days after the Fortress of Arkanon was banished back beneath the sands, Hadron Rook completed his work on the Arcane-Primal Inverter. Our heroes sat with him and Alexus Salvador to discuss how to deploy the device and put an end to the spell afflicting the Dry March. The problem, as Rook saw it, was that our heroes’ recent adventures made it clear that at least three forces of considerable threat and power would oppose them if they tried. The first being the forces of Orcus attempting to raise the Fortress of Arkanon in the first place. While we don’t know what else they’re up to, it’s likely that was not the last they heard of them. The second was Brandis Aldrin and his Black Dragon allies who recently made their presence known. Finally, there’s whomever is behind these Aberrant assaults across Touria as of late, who the party assumes are originating from the Chaos-Scape. With these powerful forces gathering in the Dry March, deploying and protecting the inverter for the time it would take to work it’s magic would be no simple, if not impossible, task.
Ten and Caelestis Nailo seem primarily concerned with striking down Orcus first, and Brandis and his Black Dragon allies first. Norlan Donaaran, on the other hand, expresses his concern that Brandis hinted that Ravekai may still live, and if that’s true, he’s a great threat to Gahzrital and Bahest, making his clan loyalties draw him to want to take them out first. Alia Dawnedge showed her continued drive to strike down the corruption of the Far Realm by insisting that the aberrants be dealt with.
Ultimately, it is suggested that rather than hunt down these foes on their own, perhaps it would be best to place the inverter in the Dry March, and draw their enemies to them. It seems unlikely that their foes would act in tandem with each other, and if they could successfully fortify a position, they could fight them on their terms. Alexus’ concern with this plan is that while Guardian’s Peak might be able to muster the resources to build such a fortress, protecting it with adequate soldiers might be more difficult. They would need help from other Vanguard posts, and possibly allied nations. Alia is quick to suggest she could probably get the help of Riddel, and others suggest that perhaps Norlan can work his connections with Bahest to get help from the Gold Dragons as well. Rook remembers the Acktavian warship they liberated years ago, the Queen Hannah and how it wound up in the hands of the Gargant Tribe. He suggests that maybe Ash and Eve can get Doroga to bring the ship in tow for defense as the ship has proven itself quite capable in ground assault and defense. The shifters agree to the idea. The more they talk, the more Ash likes the idea of a fortress defended by a coalition of their allies striking down these great enemies, and the party builds in support for the plan.
Alia takes off on her own to speak to Riddel. Meanwhile, Ash and Eve lead the party through a linked portal to see Doroga. After a short time, they are granted audience and the gregarious chieftain catches up with our heroes. He sounds more than willing to bring the airship to the fortress’s defense, and says he will await for their signal on when and where they need him and his men. Afterwards our heroes teleported back to Guardian’s Peak and boarded the Gungnir to head to Bahest to make their requests there.
On the way, our heroes encounter a pair of suspicious looking airships. Upon further inspection, they see that any national icons or flags were ripped from the ship, leaving only tattered cloth in their wake. When they approached, the ships changed course to try and ram the Gungir. Lacking any weapons themselves, the merchant airships could only give futile chase as the Gungir and her crew “sunk” the first ship, causing it to crash land via the Aero-Burst Cannons’ ability to ground airborne targets. They gave chase to the second ship, and sufficiently damaged it to cause it crash to the ground and explode into a ruined hulk of wood and steel. During the air battle however, our heroes did see aberrant monsters on the deck, so rather than allow the survivors of the second ship roam the countryside, they decided to board it and exterminate any survivors.
They met first with a group of aberrant beasts, lead by a pair of Heralds of Hadar. Despite their odd powers, our heroes triumphed in their battle. Sin (Sintera Barona) left the at this point to join the party in their purge efforts. Within the bowls of the ship however they found a party of Foulspawn, lead by a Mystic who warned them to leave least they become corrupted followers of “The Avatar of the Stars.” The party mocked his warning and tore into the foulspawn with all their might. The monsters make use of the cramped confines of the ship as well as their powers to keep the party at bay, even managing to injure a couple of heroes before they were struck down. With the creatures purged, our heroes got back aboard the Gungir and made their way for Bahest, proud they’d prevented another November Nightmare.