The Shackled City

Garrett Enters the Party

Well not even a week back in Caludron and already the job opportunities just jump out at me. While sitting at a local pub a group of four entered, they were dust covered from the road but looked very capable of handling themselves. I sized them up as two fighter types, a wizard of sorts, and one unknown profession. They needed me they just didn’t know it yet. Being that this looked to be straight forward I didn’t even bother with a character change. I introduced myself as a master trap finder and locksmith, and gave a small demonstration with some slight of hand, as I said they needed me and I was part of their little merry band before the first round was through. We met the next morning on the outskirts of town, there was another addition to the party either a cleric or healer of some kind something that is always welcome, (as long as you don’t let them know too much about your profession). We set off in search of an artifact that they said they sorely needed, four days we trekked across the wilderness giving a wide birth to a large cave that they said was home to a monstrous creature and that they had apparently been this way before. We came upon a cavern it wound its way into the side of a mountain going who knows how deep and was completely dark. It was decided that this is the opening that we are looking for and I was given my first look at a map that Isaac held. He told me a little of the artifact and that there were three women that were said to be somewhere close be it. Powerful artifacts, possible damsels in distress how could I say no? I shook my glow beetle tube drew froth my pistols and headed into the darkness. It wasn’t long before the cavern began to split into countless passageways and we were forced to continuously check the map to make sure that we were headed into the right direction. After about four or five miles of walking we began to hear a loud sound, almost like the sound of a large gust of wind across gutter pipes but a hundred times as loud. We came to an open cavern were there was no ceiling and the light shown back in. There was slime covered ramp that curved along the right wall all the way to the floor. On the left side of the cavern there was a small bog with noxious fumes and a large portcullis just to the left of the bog. I whispered back about the danger ahead and began moving slowly down the ramp, no sooner had the words left my mouth than Victor slipped over the side and fell to the bottom, luckily he was unhurt and the rest of the party made their way down in one way or another. After a quick survey of the area we discovered a small opening above the portcullis, a quick switch of my mask and up and in I went. It was a tight fit but I was able to wiggle through, on the other side I was able to make out a large guard shack that held the controls to the portcullis, and a rather large giant. I crawled back through and told the party what I had saw, then it was decided that Isaac would get us through the gate with his magic. After we had stepped through his magical door we began to make our way down the corridor when the giant attacked, the first boulder that was thrown exploded on the wall showering the party in fragments. The party turned as one to see that the giant that was guarding the portcullis had heard or seen us get past his gate, he stood up on a twenty foot ledge and was reaching for another boulder. Without wasting time and in a very one sided fight the giant was dispatched but I was afraid that the damage had already been done and the noise of the boulder thrower had alerted the rest of the place to our presence. We continued down the corridor and as I looked around the first corner there stood five Ettins and they were ready for us. I gave a quick hand signal to alert the rest of the party of the danger and tried to move closer so that I could get a better shot off. As soon I fired the party rushed into the room. I had no idea of everyone’s fighting styles and it became apparent that they really like to keep it simple, fighters run to the front regardless of the danger around to them and everyone else attacks from a distance or supports. In no amount of time the two headed giants were defeated with little damage to the party. While the room was searched I made my way over to the adjacent hallway, the furniture in the room was massive and set in a style that I had never seen before. All of the chairs had three arm rest and there were strange runes and symbols that meant nothing to me. I heard a noise from further down the corridor and readied myself, but what came down the corridor I was not expecting. Three beautiful women floated down the corridor towards us, I called out for them to halt and to state their purpose but they didn’t stop and didn’t speak. I backed into the room and called out to the rest of the part they turned toward the door right as they came into the room and stopped. The fighters moved forward and began questioning them, they thanked us for saving them from the giants and they said for our hard work that they had a boon from the gods for us. The Cleric cast a spell and told us that they were Archons and that they were not evil. They passed the jug to the Cleric of Kord and he took a drink he said that he felt stronger and that there were no side effects, his other cleric took and drink next to the same effect. Judging from the two that these women meant us no harm I introduced myself and applied the charm like only I know how. Then the jug came to me and seeing the two fighters still standing I took a drink. The warm liquid filled my small frame with a strength that I had never felt, I could almost feel my muscle grow beneath my skin. If this was their boon I was glad to take it, then I began to feel weak not lacking in strength but just weak like a great sickness had come over me and drained me. The three women saw the way that I reacted and began screaming for my death and that only one that was evil in heart would react that way to the boon from the gods. The two clerics turned towards me and looked at me in a way that made me feel apprehensive, with one of them having cast a spell of growth on himself and now was as tall as one of the ettins we had just got done defeating.
I began to back away holding my hands up when all hell broke lose. Needless to say I was struck down by the cleric while trying to flee. He then did the strangest thing and revived me all the while acting like I had been slain. I lay there in the dark while they talked to the three women all the while expecting to be struck down at any moment, it didn’t take long after that for the “sisters” to turn on the rest of the party. They turned out to be Hags that had poisoned the elixir. After a fast a furious battle where some of our party was taken over by the hags for a brief time we were able to defeat them. We continued deeper into the dungeon a lot more cautiously than we were before when we came upon a room with a throne and a large mirror a man sat on the throne near to unconsciousness. Not trusting this at all I hide and moved around behind the man, the cleric walked up to the man and began questioning him, it looked just like the paladin that we were suppose to be looking for. He told us that there was some trick to opening the mirrors and he couldn’t figure it out. After a quick look around the room and the cleric sat in the throne the trap was sprung, the man was an obvious fake and tried to attack us when the mirror turned into a gateway to a different plain and three mirror men jumped out and attacked,the “mirror” men were dispatched quickly. After messing around with the throne some more we took the plunge and went through the mirror a quick puzzle room made of colors we were able to solve and we came to a room with a hole in the wall and a familiar looking man that looked exhausted. The paladin was again the man the had gone missing that we had been sent to find. Not trusting this again we question him and cast spells to see if we can tell if he is indeed the one we were sent to find. After not being able to find anything wrong with the paladin we head out through the hole in the wall. We were in a vast desert after Victor sent a message to his God he was able to find our location about five hundred miles south of Cualdrin. We decide to use any means to get back be it magical steeds, flying and just plain walking. About a couple hours into our journey we are set upon be a demon. The vast creature and the Paladin seem bent on destroying each other the barley notice the other party members. Victor begins the attack I jump in my new glass dagger almost having no effect on the powerful demon. The Shield Paladin keeps the party alive as Fen tries to overcome the demon’s spell resistance. After getting anonned with my attacks he turns and hits me with a spell the shoots me straight up into the air. Victor swings one final time and the demon is vanquished I begin falling back to the ground luckily I have my mask and feather fall safely back to the ground. With the demon gone Victor is able to contact his follower back at his temple. She is able to transport us back to Cualdrin we heal up and return the Paladin to his temple. I head back to the Tipped Tankard to tell the family of my first job back in the big city.

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