In a hint of just how bloody frustrating he’ll be, Iluchtewhar teleported away the moment he declared he would enslave the party. Worried that he was preparing something quite bad, the party leapt into action and started opening up doors. Avarita found a strange, whispering stone behind her door but Quesh managed to find a giant stone golem in the shape of Iluchtewhar behind a separate one… with Iluchtewhar busily casting behind it. Ividia charged invisibly through the air at him but couldn’t interrupt him in time. His spell went off and the party was suddenly treated to the wall rippling like water just before a massive earth elemental charged through it.
The pile of stone certainly did its job of blocking the party off and Invidia found herself going toe to toe with the creature for a while until the party chopped through the unyielding mountain of rock. When the summoned creature was finally dispersed though, the party descended on Iluchtewhar with a vengeance, Invidia casually shattering his stone golem with a her characteristic flurry of strikes, unfortuately, with no allies left to damage, Iluchtewhar pulled out a powerful crystalline burst attack which tore through the party painfully… but most of them stayed standing. When Iluchtewhar noticed Chaaz forming the perfect weapon to get through his DR and that he was out of reinforcements, the elemental beat a hasty retreat, using greater teleport to vanish into thin air.
Knowing he’d hide and regain his strength, the party healed quickly and made an effort to search for him… but ultimately decided they would need to take this reprieve to better prepare for his tricks. That preparation being dimensional anchor. The party had 13 minutes of uninterrupted rest before setting off into the spire again.
Having already scouted the warped shining child from before, the party was more than prepared to attack when they kicked down the door and the warped, planar mutant didn’t last a single round before the violent, evil creature was cut down. The party briefly reflected on the strange, distinct crystal in the room before moving on, able to determine that the thing has the same make and energy of the emerald spire but… clearly distinct. Perhaps the seed of a new one? It would be hard to tell without a great deal of time studying it and time was something the party didn’t have.
The next room had a giant statue of a stone and crystal dragon dominating the southern end of the room. Though it was clearly an altar and there was clearly loot at the base of it, the party had little time to investigate deeply into it and moved on without even looting things. If you can imagine.
Next, the party inspected the strange room they had found the stone golem in. Without people trying to kill her, Quesh was about to tell that the map intricately carved on the wall was of Orv, the vast complex of underground vaults that housed perfectly preserved biomes filled with varying species. Only THIS map was far more detailed than anything the party had ever seen. Even an avid explorer of the darklands would kill for a map this detailed. With their curiosity piqued, Avarita inspected what looked to be the controls of the machine. The map lit up in response to the motion of the globes and when she pulled on a lever the entirety of the vault started glowing and a spectral image of a strange, tentacle-faced creature appeared in the funnel-like protrusion in the machine. The orbs then cycled through many, many different creatures until Avarita decided upon a weak looking one. As she pulled the other lever, the creature looked like it was resisting some kind of pull, making her come to the conclusion it’s a device for pulling specimens out of Orv. Curious, and downright amazing for scholars. But still.. a mad Vault Keeper was on the loose and they could scarce spend time playing with his toys.
Avarita also gloved a wall to spy a matching set of carnivorous crystals that the party could not Nope enough at.
Still on the search, the party went through the spire’s roots and popped up in a small, fungal cavern with rather violent plants. Though Invidia and Chaaz shrugged the smell of pollen off, Avarita, Quesh and Remnus all started hallucinating vividly upon inhaling it. Though there was some amusing screaming about snakes, the plants were chopped up quickly with barely any struggle and Quesh’s aura of purity ensured they would stop hallucinating while they cleaned up.
Finally, they returned to the alchemy lab to find a large section of it was walled off by stone. Figuring Iluchtewhar made a stone shape wall, the party used their OWN version of stone shape to punch through the wall. Unfortunately, Iluchtewhar was waiting for them, having heard them coming and was quick to cast spells.
We’ll come back to the fight for next week which will likely be our final session.