30 - 7/21 : Doom and Gloom
In the depths of Maelost the party now faced off against a terrifying eye-beast known as a Gauth. It babbled in an incoherent language the party could not understand, and floated towards the party while blasting them with energy from its eye stalks. Its primary eye could even stun someone with nothing more than a glance. With the aid from the spirit blessings of Star, the party was able to resist most of the Gauths attacks. The floating terror did not go down without a fight, and periodically blasted out sections of the caverns pillars, unleashing more Grell that had infested the hollow interiors. With so many pillars and the possibility of fighting so many minions, the party focused their attack on the Gauth while trying to evade its stunning aura. Gwynn was able to launch a devastating lighting bolt at the eye terror, but after her initial attack was unable to escape a pair of Grell that erupted out of a pillar. She went down after being struck repeatedly by its horrible bite and paralyzing tentacle attack! The party rushed to help, with healing words from Bliss and Star and healing salves to bring her back, but the Grell continually pummeled the poor elf to the ground. Unfortunately Gwyn was unable to recover until the end of the fight. Meanwhile Nagar, Shai and Ashton continued to pummel away at the eye beast. It was resilient, but after a combined assault of Nagars Tyrannosaurs head weapons, Shais blade and necrotic attack, and concussive bolts from Ashton, it finally fell! Unfortunately it had unleashed numerous Grell on the group, and they had to be dealt with! The Grell continued to pummel away at Gwynn and even struck Shai down briefly, but with Star and Bliss providing support and healing, the group was able to take them out one by one and claim victory! With the fight over, the party took a moment to rest. Gwyn was shaken by the horrible experience, and a sense of gloom settled over her as the party tried to provide comfort. The group investigated the cavern, and discovered a sizable hoard of treasure under a pile of bones. Star also convinced Gwyn to aid in harvesting and useful items out of the Gauth, and was able to extract some of its Eye stalks to use in future combats. After the rest was done, the group exited the cave and prepared to return to Aml. Gwyn flew to the top of the ravine with her new dragon wings, and using Tensers Floating Disk was able to ferry the rest of the group up. Finally the group made the trek back to the Hanims floating village, and was ferried across by one of the ferrymen. Back at Aml, the group was reintroduced to Zophiel. Still skeptical of her, she did not do much more than thank the party for their aid, and honored her agreement to bring Gloom before them. Shortly after, a tiefling barring all of the gaunt features of the hanim approached the party. She indicated that she was indeed Gloom, and after the party showed her some kindness and goodwill, she was willing to divulge much of the information she knew. She was a member of the Circle of Four, an adventuring group who formed late in the groups careers. Many had been all around the wheel, and some had lead exceptional lives even before they met. Vatosha was a friend of Shepherds and became Glooms love. She was an old elf even when they met, Shepherd had always said that Gloom brought life back into Vatoshas life. Vatosha was a prime from a world known as Oerth, some believe that Iggwilv (better known as Tasha) was also from this prime world. She told Gloom of the Demonomicon and the sheer power the volumes could harness. They were not simple spellbooks, they could control entire planes of the abyss. But none were as powerful as Volume 1. While Gloom did not know exactly what had been done to form the volumes of the dreaded book, she indicated it was something catastrophic. Star asked if she knew how Tasha had lost the books, and Gloom seemed to know. She had somehow lost control over the Demon Prince Graz'zt, and the two had a battle of apocalyptic proportions. She was able to vanquish her old lover, but was thought slain in the battle, and her Demonomicon were scattered throughout the planes. It seems that she had survived, and was intent on gaining back that which she has lost. Vatosha had feared what Tasha would do if she were able to collect all the volumes again, and had led their adventuring party through the Planes in an effort to seek the primary volume out. Vatosha had traveled to the City of Brass and visited the Great Repository, thought to be the combined sum of all knowledge, and was able to find a way to track down the Abyssal artifact. the party now had a lead, it was possible they too could travel to the mysterious city of the Efreeti and also learn how to find the Demonomicon before Tasha could get her hands on it, and perhaps destroy it. The party thanked Gloom for her help, and agreed to let Shepherd know on her behalf that she forgave him for what happened to Vatosha. Even if he wouldn't remember because he had drank from the River Styx, it would mean a lot to Gloom to at least have the words spoken. With the trip to Maelost complete, the party decided to return to Sigil. Here they intended on handling some unfinished business, before seeking out the City of Brass.
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