Encyclopedia Lorica

Pages to Persand
7th Edition

Pages, Yello "the Sidekick" (Chad) - sneaky worshiper of Homer, boon companion and left-hand man of The Pat. Member of the Verteux Loonies.

Pandoland - an area on Vorn.

Pandolingua - Twilight van der Rohe: "Pange lingua gloriosi corporis mysterium, / Sanguinisque pretiosi, Quem in mundi pretium / Fructus ventris generosi, Rex effudit gentium!"

Parapanisades - Seige of..., Alonzo Coatline, Iceland, Water Monopoly.

Patmos - an island on Vorn.

Pat, The (Ryan) - a "Grand Druid" rogue who first appeared in Carp Center associated with the Order of the Ring. He was installed as mayor of the village after the old mayor was killed, and it was renamed The Patville in his honor.

Pat, The "some call him Stryder" (Ryan) - a mentally unbalanced human warrior. Member of Pike Group. He was clobbered in te face by an Eck mace in the temple complex, smashing hir mask (and hir face too). Missions: Eck Temple Mission.

Pat, The (Ryan)- a fellow in some very tattered armour and a big stupid-looking reflective mask, chain-fighting cook and worshipper of Homer, a Plenapoteninary Extraordinare for the Patville with diplomatic immunity, who finds it easy to make friends with young, draftable people. Leader of the Verteux Loonies. Gabrielle Monsoir and Yanni claimed to have met The Pat in KDPW or E in an uneventful street scuffle several years before they joined the Verteux Loonies.

Rafe Leckenbee challenged the Pat to a duel. They fought at the Yuji Observatory, an old Sudibin observatory on western Vyrica, north of the Tyflyc River on 7 Aug 10042. The Pat somehow won. (Fern Dunn saw it.)

Patville, The - a village on the Uchebinik penninsula. Formerly a small poor village plagued by pirates called Carp Center until the Order of the Ring came in search of special bark. Squire Reyl went there to perform charitable building work. The month before the O.R.'s arrival had seen the contruction of a record-breaking 5 houses, and a fence around the mayor's private garden (at his insistence).

A woman in the town who had a small business of selling special (sarin?) bark potions revealed that the mayor had raped her daughter. Squire Reyl led a few of the party members to the mayor's house to confront him with this charge. When they reached the house, they were greeted by a thug, and fired upon by crossbow bolts. The party retaliated, and several were felled by crossbow shots before they entered the building to find the mayor. He had his feet burned off (courtesy Peregrine's Flame Staff) and then was hanged for his crime. The Pat was appointed to replace him and the village was renamed in his honor.

Pavel (NPC) - A cowardly dorc entomologist who seemed to be hiding from something, when he joined the Verteux Loonies in October 10039.

Pavel of Guernica () - tribal orc encountered by the Greymar Grendeling Group in Feb 10043. He and his companions were attacked by an unknown creature, perhaps some kind of lizard, and came to the group for help.

Pavimentum - Crops: wheat, vegetables, peas, cabbages, some poor vineyards, orchardry. Livestock: pigs, sheep, some goats in the mountains, cattle in the south.

Pavimentum Volcano Portal - the portal used by El Ouhdians to send a splinter group of SOAK to Vorn along with several other El Ouhd teams.

8 March, 10044 - The teams arrive on Pavimentum on a Thiverol boat, and head for the mountains.
12 March, 10044 - The teams arrive at the mounts and begin to ascend.
14 March, 10044 Night - The teams head through a small cave. Zakath says it will be a three day trip.
16 March, 10044 - The teams climb up a sharp cliff and spend the rest of the day descending the other side.
17 March, 10044 Midday - The teams are wandering through a grassy river valley. On the left is a lower, flatter mountain - a volcano. The teams climb up into a a lava tube somewhat covered in a rock slide and wander through criss-crossing lava tubes until they come to a place where sunlight comes down in the crater tube. The procession stops some distance on where there is an octagonal black spot mounted with stone and some metal. Suddenly Agent Tanor's demeanor changes and in a strange voice he starts shouting something about "home" and pushing his way toward the portal. He is knocked unconscious and when he regains consciousness he is back to normal. Zakath pulls out the "key", one (?) of the Portal Rings, and moves it around within the blackness. Fifteen minutes later he pulls the ring out. World invasion ensues as the Mock Turtle Group emerges at the Island Cave Portal.

Peabody (NPC) - a tall commanding psionic 65-year-old man. A Wizard General of the Alliance Grand Council on Vorn.

In his original meeting with the Sword Group, he took possession of the Captain with an interesting display of telekinesis (pulling the sword toward him across the table) and some kind of mind control (putting asleep Gray Armstrong's protests). He sees the Sword Group as his own little mine o' knowledge of EOW and is trying to milk them for all they're worth. Peabody is VERY interested in EOW technology and magic, believing it to be the key to defeating the Ecks. Probably completely loyal to the Council, but doesn't mind buttering his bread along with theirs.
He tried to pressure the Sword Group by saying that he knew the most about EOW and so he would be the most likely to detect contradictions or omissions in their story, so they should tell him everything and then he would tell them what it would be safe to say before the Council. (Anyone hear that knowledge is power?) It was also disturbing that he took the sword so nonchalantly.
Peabody also gave the distinct impression that he had left certain things off the statement that he turned in to the Council. While the Group's initial reaction was that he now has dirt on them, it occurred to them to wonder what sort of hot water he would be in if he airs that dirt and they find that he was not completely truthful with the Council? It would seem that he has put himself at a bit of a risk as well...

Pearson, Drew (NPC?) - museum employee. An old colleague of Genevieve L'arnot, he ran into her in Jacketz and arranged for her and a group of adventurers she gathered (The Western Wind) to transport ancient gnomish artifacts for his museum. He has an infuriating way of fidgeting with his cigarettes. The box of "spell components" he gave the Western Wind to trade with the deep gnomes for the artifacts exploded under suspicious circumstances. See Western Wind.

Pegasus - a flying horse. On Vorn, they're used as steeds for elite troops.

A fabulus, magical black pegasus accompanies Guanerius Guaneri. It's saved his skin many times. See the Greymar Grendling Group.
El Ouhd also has a pegasus.

Pegasus Cavalry (or Corp) - elite military unit on Vorn. Many seem to come from Pandoland. Known or suspected members: Twilight van de Rohe.

Pelicon - On the First Dragon Adventure, the group was hired to go explore Island 2. They did not encounter anyone or anything before reaching the volcano, except it is possible that [Nick] shot his first pelican on the boat ride to the island (it was carrying a mirror also).

Pelican of Holding - telemantic storage device. After opening the mouth, the user can put an item about the size of a ring or a spell component into the opening. It can hold up to about 400 items of this size. Owned by OMNICo as of July 10040.

Pentagon - shape with special significance to the gnomes. Gnomish rings are often made in the shape of a pentagon, as found by the Bysshe Commandoes. There is also a theory about the arrangement of major gnomish sites on EOW in the shape of pentagon or Gnockagon.

Percell, George (NPC) - not to be confused with Henry George.

Persand Armbands - bracers found by Pike Group on the scorpion dude and Eck priest killed on "Eck Temple Mission." The Eck temple complex was divided up by bronze doors (split in half horizontally and decorated with images of the scorpion dude) which could be opened by clinking the armbands. The armbands had various other cool powers (most notably, they absorbed magickal attacks and turned them into healing). But they also provided a nice psionic toehold for the balrog later on. (?)

Persand Expeditionary Force - group made up of members of the Order of the Ring, Omnico and the erswhile Pike Group who set out to destroy the Persand Portal in November 10039. Katie Thrax had wanted to destroy two portals, one on the southeastern side of Vyrica and the other on Persand.

Known or suspected members: G. Armstrong, I. Cardinoff, J. Cerano, A. Coatline, A. Correllion, C. Cromwell, Richard Folder, G. Ghiberti, D. Idaho, C. Lloyd, J.P. Marat, C. Meleshka, Thom Merrilin, T. Noolya, R. Stat, Katie Thrax, Thumbilina, R. Wildgrass, A. Wiles. - see Persand Portal Destruction Mission.

Persand Island - An interesting island with an Echyebrech base, an extensive cave system, portal(s) and a habit of growing and changing. Suspected by the Delmarintha Dig Group of being the subject of a puzzle map they uncovered. Explored by the Order of the Ring, the Pike Group, and SOA

The cave system contains: *The Eck Temple area blocked by "scorpion doors" ingeniously made of brass or wood which are opened by special armbands. *The "Big Split-level Room" requiring the use of rope and climbing skills in making passage across a chasm and up a precipice. *The passage to the "Head Mindflayer Room" which has an open ceiling up to the crevasse of the big split-level room on the entry level of the cave from which Eck like to stand shooting arrows down at players and where one must be careful to avoid being trapped by a gelatinous cube. *Room 49 has a depression in the floor that once housed a gelatinous cube. *Rooms 60 and 62-64 have had many Umberhulks.
If memory serves, the exit from the caves on the upper plateau of Persand was whipped by raging winds, but there were never any winds at the bottom entrance. One would think that a raging wind at the upper entrace should require a corresponding, opposite wind at the lower entrance. Unless there are other entrances... Other entrances to Persand. Multiple ways to meet death. Not surprising if we've only explored about 10% of the cave system. The winds up top were not at all surprising for such a high elevation on an island; there's nothing to stop the prevailing maritime winds up there, after all. We did not notice strong wind on the lower part of the island, and never have as far as I know. Nor have we ever noticed more than a minor draft in the caves, even up near the top. Although I think that following the drafts was how we finally found our way out to the top. Presumably, high winds up there would create a pretty strong suction over the comparatively small opening at the top of the cave system.
In exporing the island, adventurers have encountered tribal Echyebrech, gelatinous cubes, uxors, balryg, umberhulks, wraiths, xorn and scorpion dudes.
A touch of sensible strategy has been to prepare pyromancers to send a couple fireballs through any doors being opened to clear the area, although crates, etc. tend to get destroyed.
It is also recommend that in exploring, adventurers number rooms on maps and even (when possible) by chiseling numbers into the walls. The walls eventually grow back, but the chiseled numbers last long enough to help in double-checking work during the trip they're carved. The big advantage to numbering rooms is that it makes it easier to talk about them and keep them straight. It also makes mapping and navigation quite a bit simpler and more useful.
In 10037 (?), Kendra, Folger, and the Dig group go to Persand, and enter the caves. Inside the caves, we come to a room with the wraith in it, the center of the room is entirely made up of a hole. The wraith calls this hole "The Abyss". During the conversation which ensued, between Kendra and the thing, we learned the exsistance of a ring, posessed by Kendra, and wanted by the wraith. We also learned the true name of Katie Resnik, as the wraith referred to her as Miss Thrax. A small battle ensued for possession of the ring. During this battle, Kendra was injured by the blade of the wraith. The battle ended with Kendra faking out the wraith by pretending to throw the ring in the abyss. After returning to the boat, Folger informed the Falcon brothers that Kendra could heal herself with the ring, however she did not know exactly what effects the ring would cause on a person and their life force. When landing, Taniger took the ring off of Kendra during transport to the wagon. When they arrived at the wagons, Folger was informed of this, and suggested nicely that it be put back on her hand, as the people we were travelling with could be trusted completely. He also stated, that if she woke up and it was gone, she would be PISSED!
The topic of her healing herself was brought up by one of the Falcon twins, after they witnessed her heal herself with it during the battle with the wraith.
When the wraith left, the room we were in began to fall apart. It seems it was his power which created and was keeping the room up. When he dove to the abyss to get the ring his power dove with him.

In early July 10037, the Pike Group made the following observations on the "Eck Temple Mission." The overwhelming psionic feeling of Dread experienced on every single expedition to this cave was conspicuously absent. Theories included: (a) That defense mechanism is no longer needed, since the Enemy is returning in force now, (b) The Energy used to create that ambience which made regular adventurers uneasy and drove psionically sensitive party members straight out of their minds is being used for other things, (c) the mind-flayers have all been killed. * On the upper level, new passageways were forming, stairways ascending and descending from the original shaft. The mouth of the cave had "opened" wider--the ground in front of the entrance had sunk by approximately ten feet, along with the floor of the entrance. The rock at the entrance seemed to be etched to resemble a coiled snake winding along the frame. In fact, the cliff seemed to have been transformed into a DIFFERENT KIND OF ROCK, thought to be limestone before, but now a kind of banded feldspar. Wild, Wierd Stuff. Inside, other than the new passages and a large pillar taking up the centre of what used to be room 31, hardly any changes in layout were found. Measuring the ambient magic radiation showed that outside the cave it was approximately 60 (on a 1-100 log scale). Inside the cave, readings were basically 70. In areas where new passageways were forming, readings were in the middle and high 70's. They proceeded to an area where they had long ago blown up some other Cubes and fought some tribal Eckyebrech. All was as it had been, except that the wall-of-stone thrown up to seal off the tribal Ecks had been broken through. This passageway led to an enchanted iron door (reading: 69). Dispelling the enchantments cracked the door straight in half. The reading on the other side was 80 or so. A natural stone bridge crossed over a dark river (magic reading around 90), which seemed to be the same thing that ran through rooms alpha and beta, and which consisted of fresh but psionic water. Here was the first (?) encounter with a "scorpion dude." A complex believed to be an "Eck temple" was found beyond the Dark Psionic River. The complex was divided up by bronze doors (split in half horizontally and decorated with images of the Scorpion-dude) which could be opened by clinking a pair of magic Persand Armbands which were obtained from the scorpion-dude and from the Eck priest (killed by the Pike Group after being frightened by Hugo Down and Co.). The rooms (numbered 70-79 on the maps) were all obviously artificial, and they converged on a huge arena with an altar, a series of rainbow-coloured potions, a little pool ornamented by perpetual pecking-bird things, and a mirrored shaft into the ceiling. See the Persand Island Portal(s).
In late July, 10037, the Pike Group made the following observations on the "Black Wall Mission:" The island had been fortified by a black wall with thin, ugly towers along it, inhabited by swarms of tribal Eckyebrech, which pursued the team to the cave. The feeling of STERILE DREAD, which had been absent on the last trip was back in full force, and the team found at least one mindflayer and suspected more. One was killed in the un-numbered "Head Mindflayer Room", which might have been a new mindflayer or an old one resurrected or reanimated. A few un-interesting rooms and passageways had formed in an area which had not been visited on the July 3 trip.
Speculations under Persand, 30 July 10037: *Barron: Something evil is spilling out of the ether, pushing through the cracks in Persand. A slow intelligence is slowly evolving. *Ben. Evil seeps into it...two independent events. A soul taking an available body. Transmigration? *Barron. It acts like its alive, but this is a coincidence. It doesn't really make a big difference. *Pike. What's really important is what's going on magically and ethereally "behind the scenes." That caves are forming is not important [Why?] There is a closed water system [guess] sustained by a pumping device or magically lifted or a huge reservoir [No]. Waterfalls off the edge, after rains. Rivulets on top. Reservoir theory doesn't hold water. River flows continuously. Cooling device, boiling could induce cleansing and/or cause it to rise. We should block it up before we leave.
See also Robert and Caroline Bittle.

Persand Island Portal(s) - The portal is associated with a little pool of lights in a temple-like area of the cave system which Pike's Group discovered on Persand Island. It's possible that the pecking birds surrounding the pool (which the Pike Group stilled in July 10037) kept that water disturbed and actually disrupted the setup and made the portal inoperable. Perhaps they were installed there by the Scorpion Dude to keep everyone else out, so that he could rule his little clan of tribal eck in secure solitude. The area can be reached only by passing through the scorpion doors (see Persand Armbands). It is suspected that that may not be The Portal or the only portal, since the Enemy seems to be bringing ships across, and it would just be ridiculous to bring materials in down there and carry them all the way out through the cave system. However, it is possible that the network of mirrors in the shaft above (which are believed to be an important part of the control of the portal, if not the actual engine) might serve both the portal down there in the temple room and a portal up on the plateau directly, or that the portal could be operated from this room such that the payload came through above on the plateau. Then again, there's balryg and ringwraiths and sh!t hanging out there; perhaps they have multiple means of portaling things, and perhaps the nazgul can make the jump themselves.

Pike Group, early July 10037. The pool is interesting in that, after a battle which broke a few of the birds (due to players falling on them), they were stilled, and with the surface of the pool undisturbed, we saw in it lots of lights (various colours) which were spots of sunlight (through the shaft, apparently) reflected in bizarre and perverse ways in that mirrored shaft. Also, as the dropping of our phase dagger in the pool necessitated further exploration, we noted that when one reached into the pool (only a foot or so deep) one felt a sense of distance, as though one had reached farther (by orders of magnitude) than just a foot and a half. Hugo Down went so far as to stick his head in it (D'oh!) and described the same sort of sensation. It has been suggested that the array of lights in there is analagous in some way to the array of little lights in The Black Box. It should be emphasized that Hugo has shown none of the effects we have on other occasions seen after contact (or immersion) with the psionic water in the caves; thus the pool is probably not psionic. It should also be noted that the water's magickal radiation was consistent with the general ambient radiation of the area, a rather cool 65 (compared with reading near 90 at the surface of the psionic river) SO here's a hypothesis about the Pool being Relevant: It's a portal, which was active long ago (say, 8500 yrs?), through which the old tribal eck we've been spotting down there came. However, it had been deactivated (perhaps just by putting those pecking birds there to keep the surface ripply?) and the community of tribal ecks simply lived down in the cave (we doubt that this complex was a living area, but maybe), isolated until we started coming in and killing them off. It may be that they were not so tribal when they got here, but that isolation and lack of resources caused a decline in their level of civilization. Then, after we stilled the birds (as an accidental result of a major firefight with ecks and an invisible ghost thing) it was able to act again as a pipeline of evil, which accounts for the DRASTIC changes the island will be seen to undergo later on.
Jean-Paul Marat - "There seem to be two relevant components to the 'portal' in the temple room, as Marie described it in her last letter before she... well, in her last letter.
* THE SHAFT-- a cylindrical shaft extending up into the ceiling for an indeterminate distance. Its walls are far from smooth, and coated with reflective substances. Light enters the shaft from above (perhaps a very tiny opening; it is extremely difficult to determine the nature of it. It's unclimbable.
* THE POOL-- the little pool there bears some kind of enchantment; it's only a foot or two across and a foot or two deep, but it was clearly not just mundane water. I propose that we set about (somehow; with whatever tools we have at hand) to damage both as much as possible.
First of all, we should empty out that pool. The portal was kept inoperative for centuries just by having those birds pecking at the surface of the water. There's not much water there; it shouldn't be an insuperable task. In fact, members of the other group even drank this water and found no ill effects; I suggest we ladle it out into vinskins and consume it ourselves; that will make it pretty well unrecoverable. It is also possible that there is some enchantment in the structure of the pool itself. We should examine the basin once emptied and consider dismantling that in some way as well.
Alternatively to emptying out that pool, we could try befouling it in some way-- a few obvious possibilities spring to mind. If it's anything like potion water, it wouldn't take a drastic change in the chemistry of the water to break its magickal utility-- if it is a part of the portal mechanism.
More difficult is the shaft above. It is described as being coated with shiny reflective material, (like glass) which, alolng with its irregular surface, results in the coloured lights reflected in the pool.
The best thing would be to damage the physical structure of the shaft such that the reflections are no longer coherent. If any part of this assembly were an Ancient Orcish Technique which cannot now be reconstructed, I believe the physical shape of the shaft-reflectors is it. It is greatly regrettable that we no longer have the football for this. An explosion up there would be just plain ideal. Perhaps a very high level fireball would generate sufficient heat to melt some of the reflective stuff. (I do not believe the reflective surfaces are glass; glass, as you'll recall, is actually a liquid; in a century or two the reflective structure would be sufficiently different that I think it would be useless.) A good high-level dispel might also be a thing to throw up there.
One final possibility exists, which we must consider. The Enemy forces may have constructed additional magickal equipment around the existing structure. If so, I recommend we *ignore* it and concentrate on messing up the existing structure. Anything they've build around it, they can rebuild. What was part of the cave to begin with, that may be harder. Blowing up magick batteries is fun, but the belryg and/or the nazgul have been known to act as magick batteries THEMSELVES; wrecking their lab would not be a severe setback to them, and in my opinion would not turn the tide of the war in any important way." -- Jean-Paul Marat, physomancer and sorcerer.
We are unable to get to the little pool of lights which Pike's group (which included my dear little sister, Marie) described, as (unlike them) we have no way to get through the scorpion doors. We suspect that that may not be The Portal, since we know the Enemy are bringing ships across, and it would just be ridiculous to bring materials in down there and carry them all the way out through the cave system. However, it is possible that the network of mirrors in the shaft above (which they believed to be an important part of the control of the portal, if not the actual engine) might serve both the portal down there in the temple room and a portal up on the plateau directly, or that the portal could be operated from this room below such that the payload came through above on the plateau-- which (as I think of it) seems even more likely. Then again, there's belryg and ringwraiths and sh!t hanging out here; perhaps they have multiple means of portaling things. Perhaps the nazgul can make the jump themselves.
Then again, it's imaginable that the pecking birds (which the Pike group stilled in a fit of incompetence) that kept that water disturbed actually disrupted the setup and made the portal inoperable; perhaps they were even installed there by the Scorpion Dude to keep everyone else out, so that he could rule his little clan of tribal eck in secure solitude.
First, the time-warp thing. Isn't this the same portal that is apparently pulling in Ecks from 2000 yrs ago? Perhaps Pike and crew _did_ manage to accomplish something after all... (from questions from Rob)
First: Why the dippy birds? One common answer (and one that kinda satisfies me) is that the water in the pool needed to be kept in motion to prevent the points of light from coming into focus. This would prevent the portal from being used by doorknobs like us (unless we are clever/brutal enough defile the birds). But wouldn't it be more realistic just to cover the pool, or disconnect whatever magical battery drives the little lights?
Second: The pool would need to be regularly refreshed with new liquid, since the birds will actually increase its rate of evaporation. How long has this portal been there? I always assumed thousands of years. Have there been attendants the whole time to refresh the water supply? (Possible) But then why the need for the elaborate "perpetual motion machines" to keep the surface rippled?

Persand Portal Destruction Mission -

Nov 10039 - Accepted a job from the Ilico Trading Co., headed by Katie Thrax. She wished to destroy two portals, one on the southeastern side of Vyrica and the other on Persand. Of course we chose Persand, and set sail. We were joined by Katie, Folger, and a couple of people from past Pike adventures who are buddies of Folger. We got to the Island and could not decide on the best way to approach the island. Blew up the entrance with the boom dust meant to destroy the portal, watched Katie fight Mowcrot, etc. See also Persand Island and Persand Expeditionary Force (PEF). (Used black box to portal out?) [Team: AC, ]
Persand... the word won't leave my mind. It sits on my cerebrum with its dreadful stinking cave. Enemy activity has *GREATLY* subsided here. We should capitalise on the diminished presence to take another look.
November 10 Expedition finished preparatory training and makes final arranges for trip. Thom's plan of attack is perused and critiqued.
November 11 Sets sail in The Nightwanderer. Spirits are generally high. Plans to try to get on the island: Plan 1: Send Chad in with Kendra, Idaho, and one other from the O.R. We leave and hope they can get out though the portal. Plan 2: Sneak everyone off the boat, maybe blowing up the boat in the process and hope we can get through the portal. Plan 3: Leave 10 or so people to die as "acceptable losses" so the rest can sneak off the boat. Plan 4: Sneak one person off boat to cause diversions and then try to get plan 2 to work. Plan 5: Leave now. Plan 6: "Hey Egg-dude, guess who we found on the boat...."
November 13 Ship is met by guardships south of Ilum Alpha and, following Merrilin's plan, allows itself to be escorted in. Our fearless (read stupid) adventurers mangaged to get them selfs docked at the Persand Docks by telling the Eggs that we would hunt down Kendra (who was sitting in the room cleverly disguised as herself.) After talking under a blanket writing notes to each other trying to plan how to hit the wall and caves. So here is what happened at the "2 hour game" tonight...
November 14 The PEF negotiates with the controllers of Persand to capture Kendra Thrax in exchange for travel to a world full of adventure. They return to their boat and debate the merits of attempting another landing later or sneaking ashore now. The party in favor of sneaking ashore wins. They rig the boat to explode upon tampering or the release of one of the homing pigeons, and slips into the water to swim to the southern shore of Pike's Bay. (Its canons were set to go off with grapeshot right into the docks.) C. Lloyd, Thumbilina and A. Coatline never reappear from the swim. We get to the wall, wait a little while, kill an egg and go over the wall. At this point we are missing about 5 people. The rest of the party scales the wall and regroups on the other side before heading north. We meet up with Thom and Gray an hour after crossing the wall. After 2 hours, we hear a loud explosion. We assume it is the boat. A little after that we get to the cave entrance at the bottom of the 500' unclimbable cliff. Everyone curses as we find that the entrance has been closed by a rockslide to a depth of about 10 ft. After several minutes of thought, we chose to clear by using the magical bomb brought to destroy the portal. (We used walls of stone and shape stone to shore it up a bit, then blasted all the excess out.) After we went in, the rock caved in after us. They explore the southeastern area (across the landbridge) but cannot penetrate the bronze scorpion doors (12th level magic) to get to the portal. In returning across the landbridge from the portal complex, they are attacked by minotaurs and egyebrech. (5 minatours, 3 fighter and 2 mages, backed up by 8 egg from below and a bunch from across the bridge.) Cromwell, Wildgrass and Rheo Stat are slain and Grey loses the silvery, bejeweled ring believed to be telemantic. We regroup at the top of the bridge.
The party then explores near the chasm room and is attacked by egyebrech and uxors. Kendra engages the balrog in a firefight in the chasm room during which she disappears; the rest of the party fights egyebrech in the halls until the explosion stops. They proceed north out of the chasm room attempting to reach the top of the island, but are stopped by a trapdoor. They return, map some new areas in the old spider area but are prevented from continuing by the stifling, napalmy remains of a gelatinous cube they incinerate. They then decide to return to the scorpion area. In the scorpion statue room they are attacked by a scorpionman and several egyebrech. Catherine Meleshka, Duncan Idaho and Tri Noolya are slain but the enemies are overcome and a pair of bracers recovered. Thom is regenerating from a severed left arm and fractured right arm. The grappling hook is destroyed when it is brought into contact with one of the bronze scorpion doors. One day of food remains. "
In any case, massing with that thing was one of the major things we had in mind as we came; but since we couldn't get to it, and since we knew our retreat was blocked, we figured we might as well make our way to the plateau and look for some trouble up there. So, we elected to make our way up to the top. We had several butt-kicking battles where we just rocked on against flocks of eckyebrech. Finally, we got to the Big Split-Level Room. The first major problem here was that there was yet another mindflayer hanging around downstairs, who would mindblast us as we climbed up and cause people ot let go of the rope, etc... One of the more amazing party members went off and killed it, but by the time he got back most of us were already up except for one or two who had fallen to their death or as-good-as-death (i. e. any broken bone).
The second major problem is that before all of us had gotten up the cliff, some nasties came pouring in after us; how annoying.
The third major problem was the eck that met us on the upper level. Fight Fight Fight. I don't recall anyone dying here, but one or two people got smashed into that Needs-A-Regen-OK,-we-regenned-him-Good-He-Can-Walk-Around-Again-In-Two-Weeks kind of shape. The fourth major problem greeted us as we were fighting those Eck; it was Big, it was Black, it was Leathery, it was a Balrog. Not just any balrog, K. or Folger. confided to us; this was the big one, Mowcrot himself. Mowcrot called out in an incomprehensibly huge voice, "Greetings, RingBearer". This was clearly between Kendra and the Balrog. She drew her cool invisible-sheath sword, and annoyed the beast with a lucky hit. Mowcrot had a mace and a bullwhip, both of which were fairly effective. One of us had a lucky thrust with the phase dagger, which definitely caused it pain. But M. was [obviously] just toying with us; eventually we ran out of lucky shots. When it became clear that ordinary measures could not pull us through, Kendra pulled out her Ring.
At the moment, she and the Beast are locked in a truly awesome firefight; it isn't clear to us who is ahead, although the effects on Kendra of channeling that kind of power have already made themselves visible. She looks to have aged twenty years in a couple of minutes of combat, and that's bad because she is already something like 60. Nonetheless it's pretty amazing to think that an old woman with a ring can take on Mowcrot and it's not clear who's winning.
"Persand Expeditionary Force, 15 (?) November 10039, Richard Folger, Diary Page" I am seizing the time to write this in between guard shifts as we recuperate from a terrible fiasco. Following my last entry on the fiery disappearnce of K., we decided to explore some of the area near the chasm instead of descending it. The chasm room, naturally, was damaged considerably during the battle and is dangerous to occupy for reasons of both magical radiation and falling rocks.
We headed east into the old spider area (though nobody's seen spiders there for two years, I think) and found some minor changes: a few new rooms had gone but the topology remained roughly the same. We did try to explore the drop shaft south of room 90 but found it to be unstable and near a dripping ceiling. Given our poor experiences with the Persand water supply, we decided to stay away. Northeast of room 90 was another drop (25') which is the site of these current scribings. G.G. was good enough to drop down but was attacked from above by a gelatinous cube in the room just beyond the narrow passage below the drop. He miraculously was missed by the mass of the creature (?), but was splattered. We managed to clean him off quickly though. Then, recklessly, he descended again in order to incinerate the cube with a fireball. For whatever reason he lost control of the pyromancy and burned himself severely without hurting the cube. Thom immediately tried to climb down to blow up the slime with his football bomb, but slipped and fractured his arm (marginal note: don't feel sorry yet) and dropped the bomb into the fire. Tri Noolya climbed down and fell, also, but had the presence of mind to arm the bomb and throw it down the hall. The explosion flung sticky, burning fireballs over the three of them. Julie had to climb down and administer to G.G. who was near death and set Thom's arm (as she is doing now). We had to use nearly the last of our healing supplies on G.G. and Thom (each needed a regeneration and several heals). Tri, apparently, is nearly okay despite protecting G.G.'s body from the blast with her own. It has proved impossible to explore any further down the corridor due to the oily fires and suffocating smell. Hope it smokes out a rog or two. Hope Thom stops whining. Everyone gets regenerated eventually. Time to move, I guess. I was wrong. We talked some more and decided that our best bet was to return to the area of the scorpion doors and try the grappling hook trick on the doors. I wish I knew enough magic to predict whether or not this would be successful; for all her mastery of swordcraft, it's times like these when Kendra showed her true genius and, sadly, indispensability. Things have gotten bleaker...three more of my friends--three of the most valiant men and women I've been blessed to meet--are lying dead on the floor of this accursed system. In addition, Grey is missing and Thom is mangled. We were only saved from annihilation by Angellene's acute hearing and Armstrong's heroics. While in the room with the scorpion statue, we were surprised by six egyebrech in red robes, tricorner hats and scimitars from the west and an scorpionman to the north. Catherine Meleshka, our pilot, was killed defending I.C.'s flank, Tri Noolya died at my side fighting the hideous half-human monstrosity which godlessly trampled her to death, and Idaho, my great and private Idaho, died in a combat he should never have entered, having returned to realm of the conscious not an hour before. If possible, I shall have him ressurected. The scorpionman retreated under the onslaught of G.G.'s bow and the swords of Grey and myself. It disengaged and rushed backwards into the room to the north; Grey slipped in as the door closed. Even after twenty minutes of attending to the wounded, he has not reappeared and there is no sound. Perhaps he cannot hear our knocking. No physical attempts to open the door have succeeded. At the start of the combat, four of the egyrebrech made it into the room; Julie, Grey, Isabella and Catherine engaged them. Angellene lost a lightning bolt that felled her (she got up and some point and then did lost another one so we let her lie) and damaged Catherine. Tri and I engaged the scorpionman. Idaho hung back. G.G. hit the creature in the head, disturbing it and allowing us to take an early advantage. Unfortunately, Tri was not prepared for its tail attack and was downed by it. She returned after a quick healing, but wasn't quite the same...the creature dropped her after a lightning quick parry and then trod her down. By this time, three of the egyebrech had been slain, but they had a healer who was doing his duty. Catherine and J.C. were down and G.G. was forced to fight as well. After Isabella went down, Grey had to fight two, but emerged the victor. It was now that Duncan took JPM's flaming scimitar and killed an eg but was struck down from behind by the beast. I was also temporarily knocked out by his weapon, though I regained my composure quickly. In the meantime, I guess, the creature hew down Andrew and Thom, but Grey and JPM had finished off the egyebrech. Grey, I forgot to mention, felled their healer with his trademark hand axe-to-the-chest on the riposte from his thrust. An admirable, if sneaky, tactic, I must say. God, would that I had better things with which to be impressed. The creature ran, as I said before, and Grey followed him into the other room. Thom was in terrible shape, having landed across the statue when thrown and then losing his arm completely after a wild swing at Grey by the creature. Only by using G.G.'s last regeneration potion were we able to prevent his death, though we knew we couldn't awaken him given the circumstances. He also appears to have a minor skull fracture, though perhaps the sunkenness is natural.
There are seven of us left, not counting Thom: myself, Andrew, JP, Julie, GG, Angellene, Isabella. We have two days of food remaining and no healing magics. I am beginning to believe that it has become impossible to locate and destroy the portal and that using the black portal which G.G. has bravely carried this whole way may be the best solution. If we could only get these doors open, though, we could investigate the portal that lies beyond them, unlikely as it is to be useful for transporting ships. Using the box, though, would make it impossible for Thom to come and would strand Grey here if alive. What would K. do?
JP just tried a dispel magic on the door; nothing happened. Might as well try the grappling hook...we paid in blood for the chance.
The Sacrifice, combat, death, and mutilation of Jean-Paul Marat as portrayed by the inmates of the Omnico Asylum under the Direction of Miss Kendra Thrax Conclusion: [[[ There is, to my sorrow, yet another gap in the record. Briefly, the party was busy fighting other eckybattles. We heard explosions and things from the battle between Kendra and Mowcrot. By the time we had our hands free to go check on them, there was silence in the Split-level Room; apart from manifold and obvious signs of damage to the cave, there was no trace of either Kendra or the Balrog. We made our way down to the lower part of the room ]]]
Our attempt to make an intelligent decision as to what to do failed miserably; the general sentiment among the party (particularly the little Gnome) was "No Talk. Fight. Talk Bad. Think waste time."
We set out on a half-hearted attempt to explore some new parts of the cave, and this indeed led us to some adventure. Our little Gnomish friend scouted ahead in a passage with a dropoff and found himself a Gelatinous Cube. He prepared a fireball for it, which in fact should have done nicely, but his spell was disturbed and he ended up incinerating himself instead. Several party members (including the valiant minstrel Thom with the football we had recovered from the Ecks earlier) went to his aid, but nobody seemed to be able to make the trip down. Eventually, we succeeded in blasting the cube with the football (I wish we had saved it for later!) which was effective in destroying the cube but left the passage too choked with fumes to pursue for the moment. The one good thing to come of this horrifying debacle was that we learned that our little Gnomish friend was in fact none other than the legendary Guanerius Guanerii, and he intimated that he had with him a black box which we could use to portal out of there when the time came. Hope! We may yet survive this place.
At this point we decided to make our way down to the portal room and blow it up real good. It is not clear to us that that is the real portal, but it remains possible that the mechanism of this portal (or some part of it) functions as part of the portal they are using. I maintain that for that reason the sabotage of this portal is eminently worthwhile, especially as we are in a good position to do so, whereas we have no idea as to where another portal would be or how to get there. Not much seemed to be happening in the cave as we made our way towards the religious complex.
There was a battle, wherein we "kicked some eckyebutt" (what a formulation! I saw this on a poster in KDPE), with some heavy casualties. Thom Merrilin was not only downed but fairly badly mutilated. Catherine Melushka, Tri Noolya, and Duncan Idaho were killed. In addition to a whole bunch of Eckyebastards, we also had to contend with a particularly hideous and particularly large half-human, half-scorpion monster. We drove the monster into retreat in its little private room, and Grey managed to follow it inside, destroy it, and retrieve its arm-bracelets, which we knew to be highly powerful and useful for opening doors. Retrieving Grey from the room unfortunately obliterated our fancy magical grappling hook.
Recovering the bracelets from the scorpion-monster was an exceptionally gruesome process. We proceeded into the large room to do our work. There was an invisible personage watching is from the bridge, but we frightened it off. In addition, the other party members preferred to stand around stupidly rather than take action. Thus, we wasted our chance to destroy even the small portal; long before anyone was ready to snap out of their stupor we were attacked.
Spearheading the attack was a wraithlike figure with a football, whom I recognized to be Marie. My little sister, reanimated and forced to destroy herself and us! Fortunately, the explosion did relatively little damage to our party, but soon more Eckyebrech were on us, and our fate was sealed. Hopefully, some of us will be able to escape via Guanerius' box; it seems unlikely that anyone will bother to take any productive action against the portal. One Dispell sent up into that shaft may well have succeeded in shutting down the whole portal, but no-one could bother.
[[[ In the combat following, Jean-Paul was killed, and it was necessary to make sure that his remains were unresurrectable. Several party members did escape via Guanerius' portal. However, Jean-Paul's despairing prediction was realised; nothing was done whatsoever about the portal. ]]]
From the notes of G. Guanerius Guaneri-- I had that day dream again. The one where Uncle Gary scolded me for not practicing my archery enough, saying, "It's hopeless Guanerius, you are a lost cause." I always remember that at the bleakest of times, usually not consiously, but in that subconsious state of shock or dismay. Shortly after that day some fifty years ago, Gary left us to go adventuring and never returned. I never got a chance to prove Uncle Gary wrong and have spent the rest of my life trying to prove to myself that he wasn't correct in his criticism.
I let him down but I won't let that happen to these poor souls that I've dragged to Persand.
The blood and death slowly came into focus as I saw the wreckage caused by the battle with the scorpionman and the echebrech priests of doom. What was the toll? Thom, severely hurt, and Duncan and Tri dead. Well, I can save the rest.
"Julie, come here." I called across the room as the woman tendingthe injured finished wrapping Wile's arm. "I need the restore mentality potion you have in order to heal those people still alive." I said in a firm voice. I didn't feel at all easy about our situation. She came without a word and produced the potion shortly. After assessment, I healed as many of my comrads as I could, however, no one looked as good as they did before the battle.
The next order of business was opening the doors. the grappeling hook did the job on hte first door to free Gray Armstrong from the filthy scorpion tomb. The answer had to be those magical bracers. After grotesquely removing the foul hide of the beast from the bracers, I used a scroll to identify the magic involved.
"So, what do they do?" Jean Paul inquired.
"These bracers are sixteenth level sorcery bound with absorb magic, heal, and telekensis magics. I don't want them, bracers chaffe my arms." I said, knowing that by taking them I may never get them off and with magic-antimagic reactions,.... Julie was the most willing of the crew to take the responsibility of the magic, however, I don't think she fully understood the possible repercussions of her actions. May the gnomish gods bless her in her ignorance. We proceeded into the antechamber before the suspected solar portal room with the help of the bracers. It was empty. An empty room always makes me edgy.
I readied an arrow as julie opened the door to the portal room. We walked into the seemingly empty room. I sensed trouble, but couldn't see it. It was quiet, too quiet. Everyone entered the room and I approached the pool. It was still, the opening to the sky was dark and the portal lights were not there. Solar energy must be the key - quite a powerful battery. Wait...
I pulled out a detect magic scroll. If we're going to attempt to destroy this portal, we need to know where the magic is. I looked at the pool and saw that the rim around the edge of the water was magical. Then I looked up past the bridge and saw...oh,no. I slowly backed away from the bridge and motioned everyone to do the same.
"It's either a phase creature or an invisible one," I whispered to Folger as we backed away.
"Who is it that watches us." I called in an unyielding echebrech tongue. The creature did not answer, but disappeared behind the railing.
"Watch out everone, he's probably getting away, but a visitor has been watching us from above." I slowly headed toward the door and suddenly heard a *FWAP*. Looking toward the arched portion of the chamber I saw a zombie carrying a football bomb. Troll Trilk. BOOM! We were all fried. Luckily, I wasn't hurt badly. I readied my bow for a second wave and when I heard the FWAP I turned and fired, hitting the football, causing the zombie to spin and turn, finally exploding in a ball of flame. My friends ran toward the door as a third zombie with a football appeared by dimension door. FWAP. I shot. Another direct hit and another burning zombie. I turned to leave. FWAP FWAP FWAP FWAP FWAP FWAP. Almost simultaneously, six dimension doors opened with six red cloaked echebrech entering ready to fight.
We all were in the antechamber now and julie shut the door. Folger, Isabella, and Gray readied for combat as Julie battled to keep the door closed. It seemed that there was another pair of bracers on the other side of the door! I readied my bow again to kill the first thing that moved through the door.
Folger commanded,"We're ready Julie. Let 'em in."
"Yeah, they're wooses." Grey piped in.
The door fully opened. I shot the first echebrech through the throat. Five more flooded into the room and combat began. A mass of confusion proceeded with Gary, Folger and Isabella fighting bravely against the echebrech priests. After a couple were taken down, one of the echebrech got a lucky hit in and Gray went down.
The head echebrech priest, with the scorpion bracers miraculeously rose from the neck wound and prepared to engage me. Another pair of ecks went down to the swords of Folger and Isabella. Folger came to my aid as I began to fight.
My mind fails me now as to the horror of the next few moments, however, it was a mere instant til we were standing alone in the antechamber with the doors closed - Folger, Julie, Isabella, and me. The head of the echebrech had escaped.
** More to come ** G G
From the notes of one G. Guanerius Guaneri-- (A continuation of a previous summary.) "Well, I think it's time to leave," Isabella stated. "One escaped and other echebrech priests may be coming very soon." Folger and I agreed.
"What are we going to do about our friends?" Julie asked looking at the slain members of our party that fell during the expedition. "We can't just leave them here for the ecks to zombify. Can we take them with us?"
I thought about it. I hadn't tried it before, but it might just work. "If they're dead then they should just act like equipment. I won't be able to carry anyone if I am going to be able to take the box with me. We'll have to take all of the people that we can and, well, destroy the rest."
It was a silent consensous as I prepared the box on the portable table I had brought so that I could take the box with me. Folger decided to take Jean-Paul and Duncan. Isabella took Gray and Andrew Wiles, while Julie picked up Angeliene. I got Julie ready to port to the Sprines as Folger made our companions who would not go home indistinguishable. A sadness filled me for a moment, but I had seen so much death, so many friends pass, I needed to be sure that the ones still living would survive to avenge the deaths of the others. Julie slowly faded into the box and Isabella followed.
Folger had just completed his task as his turn came to port through. I vaguely remember a tear coming to my eye as he placed his head into the box. (I think it was dust, of course.) A moment later I was all alone - in Persand. I took one last look over the room and seeing nothing unusual I prepared to port while carrying the box.
I found myself on a high ledge of the Sprines holding the box in my hands. I saw Julie and Folger together about ten feet below on a ledge and decided to join them. I looked for Isabella, but she was no where to be seen. I began thinking about how we were going to get out of enemy territory with the dead bodies when I noticed Julie and Folger stareing at me. I looked around and then down and almost fell off the cliff from the shock. A death head amulet was around my neck. It hadn't been there before we left Persand.
"What the hell is this?" I blurted out in Gnomish as I often did when I was surprised. Julie and Folger just looked at me. The moment passed as Isabella ported through with her two bodies. At least we were all together. (that was odd she left before me and appeared after. The weight she held was not as much as that of Folger, who seemed to not have any trouble being first through.)
We headed down the Sprines toward Trade City, where we expected we could find a way to Kissing Dragon Pass West. During the third day, while I was hunting, a number of tribal echebrech attacked the camp, but were easily dispatched by Folger and Isabella. After bringing in the largest buck I'd ever seen, we continued on our way. A little wary of our vulnerability.
The next night, during the second watch, I caught a few more tribal echebrech on top of the ridge watching us. I shot an arrow, trying to scare them off, but accidently killed one. A sudden explosion on the cliff showed a little luck on our part. We made it back to Trade City without any other disturbances. Folger got a room and passage for us to Forsythia with a SETCO caravan. (The man is amazing.) Astro and the Order of the Ring group met us there. We left shortly after reaching Forsythia on the Order of the Ring boat "The Tempest".
Astro performed three of the most amazing resurrection spells that I've ever seen. Gray, Andrew, and Duncan were brought back to life after being dead for about two weeks. Knowing that it was something that I was not expected to help with, but feeling a need to help those who were my comrads, I joined in the resurrection, giving some of my life blood for Duncan.
I rubbed my stubbily goatee, as we left on a dark, cloudy morning from the KDPW port. It had been a few weeks since the resurrection and we all had taken a rest, to recover from our most recent Persand experience. Our boat was in prime condition for this voyage, however, I could only think it was too good of timing for the blockade to break just as we were planning a mission to get more saren bark from Uchebnik.
** more to continue **
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