Journey through Madness

Debout of the ChaosWeave
Magic goes Mad!

9/ Kythorn/1392 DR

Durnan the 6th was quite helpful to us when we returned back from killing the ooze horde. I don’t know what else he has in mind for us, but it’s clear now that he at least views us as assets. He offered to pay us for seeking out The Crows in the Dungeon Level, and seemed deeply disturbed to hear that the layout of Undermountain itself is changing.

He directed us to Wilril Tallcrippler, who described The Forsaken to us, and who promised to secure some gnomish explosives for us. From there, we went to see Quicaryn Velate, and learned of the Chaosweave, one of the many new hazards we would face. Finally, we descended back into Undermountain.

After solving the riddle binding the main entrance, we came across an abandoned campsite. Kraven found a hidden treasure stash, and we followed the trail of blood from the campsite, which led us to a series of Raiders and a very insane bandit brandishing a magic staff.

It was a fierce battle, but we defeated the group. The Chaosweave tied to the magic staff ultimately backfired, summoning a Scaladar from an abyssal pit. That horror then set about attacking everyone indiscriminately, but Ghesh’s valor put it down.

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Secret of the Ooze
A group of misfits forms, wins the trust of Durnan, and descends into the abyss!

You must be a brave man, cracking open Ebony’s diary.

8/ Kythorn/1392 DR

The priests had all been very kind to me, but I had healed, and it was time to move on. I’m still not sure about who it was that attacked me, but for now, I need to get out of Waterdeep. Oddly enough, during my fevered rest, I had a strange dream about a place I’ve never been to before. From my asking around, this place can only be Undermountain. It’s a dangerous place, but I need answers, and I feel oddly confident that Undermountain will give them to me.

The only remaining entrance to Undermountain was in The Yawning Portal. While a scummy den of profiteers, it was the only entrance, and word on the streets was that adventurers were gathering here. Ghesh was the first I met – he stuck out like a sore thumb, though, oddly enough, all my companions did. While naive and overconfident, he seems a truly noble sort, and should prove a reliable ally and a combat powerhouse. Most of the others were gathered around his table – Thatari, who seems a slightly strange priest – but I find him a very likeable sort, and Sankisch, who, in a moment of stupidity, I referred to as a Bullywag. Sankisch seems to be the leader of the group, and his mastery of the spell-sword should come in handy. We then approached Kraven, who I had learned was a very talented assassin. With my natural persuasive talent, I was able to convince him to join us, though I’m sure he has an angle of his own for coming along.

With our team together, Durnan the 6th approached us and offered us a job. I know enough about him to be wary of him, but he seems reliable so long as there’s money in it for him. He asked us to clear the cavern beneath the well – something down there was killing adventurers by the score, meaning he wasn’t making any money on the bets so popular in this establishment. He went so far as to offer us a magic ring up front as a “token of good will”. While useful, I’m nervous about why he offered it. Has he taken a genuine shining to Ghesh or does he have something else planned?

The cavern below the well smelled like a thousand rotting bodies, and most of the cavern was covered in a waist-deep black sludge. The sludge seemed harmless, but it slowed our movement substantially. Roughly a third of the way to the door on the other end, we were ambushed by a swarm of ooze creatures, though they proved no match for our team. Perhaps most interesting was that Ghesh‘s axe was engulfed in a grey light during our battle and has become something… other. I don’t know anything about it, but the light seemed very faintly familiar.

We rest for now, but next I imagine we will speak with Durnan again and move deeper into Undermountain.

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Before They Began

They were relative no-bodies, really. Adventurers in their own right, most certainly, but still young and inexperienced in the grand scheme of things. They would find their legends merging at Waterdeep. In response to the aftermath of the magical cataclysm that was the SpellPlague, the Undermountain of the notorious Mad Mage Halaster has gone berserk.

Gone are the original denizens of this madhouse, replaced instead with the profane, the nauseating, and the outright bizarre. Traps once thought understood have mutated into something completely other, and even the layout of Undermountain itself appears to have been under reform. Even picking up an item is now a dangerous venture – identification magics have no effect in this new Undermountain, and most items carry a maddening mix of blessing and curse effects.

Beyond the knowledge of our party, a familiar laugh, once long-forgotten, echos through Undermountain halls. Apart from his puppetry, the Divine themselves have taken a personal interest in the matter, which could see one of their order redeemed and one finally brought to justice. Before it all plays out, a Succubus Paladin and Elminster himself will offer aid (though that may be less unusual than one thinks) and famed Waterdeep itself has a hand to play in the matter, to avoid Undermountain’s freakish new creatures from flooding the city itself!

Undermountain is a mad laboratory once more, and frankly, no one believes this ragtag ensemble will last even a day in such a hell. But it is by doing the impossible that legends are forged.

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