Black Heart

Heading Toward the Light

Following the defeat of the raven atop the clocktower, Adiah examined the third eye on the raven and noticed a faint aura of enchantment around it. Taking a closer look, Adiah also believed that the eye was that of a human. Adiah took the icy-blue eye and carefully placed it in a pouch for safe keeping.

The party descended the clock tower and made their way to the docks in an attempt to get to the lighthouse, hoping to light the beacon and thus weaken the undead. The party piled into a couple of row boats and with Adiah and Goeban piloting the way, headed toward the lighthouse’s island. The water was surprisingly choppy and Lonys could see scores of undead fish, some skeletal, some more zombie-like, scurrying through the water as the party passed. Other, larger, undead sea creatures also attempted to batter the boats in an apparent effort to capsize them, but Adiah and Goeban were able to make it to the island without too much difficulty.

Once at the island, the party looked up at the surprisingly tall lighthouse, standing some 300 feet high, and prepared to go inside. The air on the island was particularly cold, much colder than in the town, and the air tested the reserves of the party, except for Elexara whose natural resistance to the cold made her mostly immune to its effects. Some thought was given to trying to climb the outside of the lighthouse, but ultimately it was decided to try the front door.

Lonys carefully disarmed and unlocked the door then quietly pushed it open. Peeking in, Lonys saw that the inside of the lighthouse was much larger than the outside and that furthermore, the inside really looked nothing like a lighthouse, and rather, looked more like the inside of a lord’s keep. Grand hearths and luxurious furniture appointed a large room, and along one wall was an ornate desk. Lonys was able to carefully open the one locked drawer, disarming the crude trap before doing so, and recovered a diary that appeared to have once belonged to Lord Cadmus Zelkan. The diary had also been enchanted, seemingly to preserve it. Flipping through the diary, Adiah saw that much of it seemed to be little more than thoughts on the day to day affairs in Mistmarsh. However, toward the end of the diary, Zelkan mentioned the arrival of the gypsy and the joy of he and his wife when she became pregnant. The writings grew darker though and when the time of the birth arrived, Zelkan mentioned not being allowed to be present during the birth and of hearing the painful shrieks of his wife. He did eventually hear the cry of a baby, which was soon followed by a shriek of pure terror.

As the party investigated the main entry hall, they could hear the sound of a child’s laughter in the distance. The laughter would filter in through the walls and then disappear just as quickly. Looking around the main hall, there were two sets of staircases, one going up and one going down. Given that they were here to try to light the beacon, the party decided to go up first. As they climbed the gently winding stairs, they could again hear the sounds of a child laughing, followed by an admonishment from an adult female who appeared to be trying to get the child to behave. The admonishment was firm, but not angry. As the party reached the landing of the second level, they saw a one time luxurious room that had been converted into a battlefield. Several devils now occupied the room and had set up defensive bulwarks around the room. There was also a cloud of necrotic mist floating through the room.

The party moved quickly to get a bit closer and Elana was able to fire off a couple of her arrows at one of the devils before they had noticed the party’s presence. As the battle broke out in full force, the devils struck at the party with their chains and a shadow creature approached the back lines of the party, creating a cloud of obscuring fog. Although the devils had Lonys surrounded early, they still proved to be little match for the party and only the shadow was able to put up much of a fight — primarily due to its insubstantial nature. Elana’s arrows turned the devils into pin cushions while Adiah’s divine power scattered them and Lonys and Goeban finished them off. Elexara meanwhile, kept the shadow occupied, allowing the rest of the party to fight the devils.

Having finished off the devils, the party continued their ascent of the lighthouse. The stairs continued to wind up until they eventually reached a trap door much like the one in the clock tower. Lonys carefully opened it and peaked in, seeing a large, magical cauldron that was unattended. Lonys slipped into the top of the lighthouse and soon noticed a small panel fairly well concealed on the base of the cauldron. After disarming the trap on the panel, he slid it open and found a second eye, almost identical to the first contained within. Like the first eye, this one also had a faint aura of enchantment on it as was an icy blue in color. Elexara then used her arcane talents to light the cauldron and discover that the cauldron should remain lit until more arcane energy was spent to turn it off, or it was otherwise destroyed. Looking at the cauldron, it was also clear that the sides could be raised and then the base turned in order to focus the beacon on a particular spot.

As the cauldron was lit, the party was able to observe the reaction in town. As soon as the light began to shine, undead creatures began to rise up from the ground, mainly within the graveyard, and rush toward the island that housed the lighthouse. The party realized that they would have a significant fight on their hands just to get back to shore. They also realized that there was still a section of the lighthouse, the basement, that they had yet to explore. Not wanting to have enemies attack them from behind while they tried to cut their way through a horde of undead, the group decided to turn off the cauldron, with Adiah taking care of it.

Lonys then lead the party back downstairs and into the basement. When he approached a set of double doors he could once again hear the childish laughter that had been teasing the party throughout the lighthouse. Lonys decided to simply open the door, rather than try peeking in. With the door opened, Lonys was able to see a small child, no more than a couple years old, sitting in the center of what looked like a nursery. The child appeared to be playing and sitting next to a couple of slumped over forms. The child turned to look at Lonys, blood covering its arm, and asked “Did Nanny Caly send you?” As Lonys answered no, the child’s face turned a bright red and the room morphed into a cement room housing six arcane circles. The child disappeared and was replaced by a huge goristro and a second demon.

Lonys charged in to attack the goristro and scored a solid hit on the demon, but was then pummelled by it in response. Worse, the goristro when it stepped into one of the circles was able to close the doors to the room, leaving the rest of the party outside. Goeban empowered the attacks of the rest of the party, except Lonys, with the power of Ioun and then forced the doors back open. Elexara and Elana came into the room to engage the goristro as well, but Elana was forced to retreat back out when the demon charged at her following one of her deadly arrow strikes. It was then that the true danger of the circles revealed itself, for the second demon launched a ranged attack, stepped into a circle, and then once again closed the doors, leaving Lonys and Elexara trapped in the room with the two demons.

Fortunenately for the party, Goeban was again able to open up the doors and enter into the room and the rest of the party soon followed. At that point the fight was on in full force and both sides poured everything they had into the battle. Elexara kept the ranged attacking demon occupied, keeping it from effectively using its most powerful attacks while the rest of the party fought the goristro. Even with the five members of the party facing off against just the two demons, it was very touch and go. Three different members of the party would fall unconscious, and it was not until Goeban unleased a massive flurry of blows on the goristro and followed that up with all the healing energies that Ioun could channel into him that it finally started to look as though the party would make it. At last both demons fell to the might of the party and they could catch their breath.

It was at this time that they noticed one of the demons was in possession of a magical suit of chainmail. When Adiah examined it, he noticed that it appeared to be especially useful for devas. Slipping the chainmail on, Adiah was given a vision of a set of one hundred foot high adamantine doors, which he suspected were located either on Tytherion or Carceri. In addition to that vision, he also caught flashes of the life of another deva, Beriah Nadil, and it was then that Adiah realized he had found one of the famous Implements of Beriah Nadil. With that, the party reclimbed the stairs to the top of the lighthouse, preparing to make camp and rest up before lighting the beacon.

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