Sunday, September 17, 2017

Intersections and Interactions - Princes of the Apocaverse - Session Twenty-Four

The Chapters and Cast of the Ballad - Also mentioned: The Journal of Aisha Yethtai

Elivia sought out Marle at the bard's inn;
Finding the after morning of a carnal meeting;
A jaunty Ruathym half-drow stepping from within;
And the tiefling seeing the peace pass most fleeting.

Unconcerned with the personal matters;
Elivia relayed the suspicions that they now faced;
That Merosska's end of many clatters;
Had been undone by a family of questionable taste.

Taking to the cemetery of the Waterdhavian nobles;
They spoke to Caretaker S'Elliot of Kelemvor;
A thin frame and mustache that was somewhat mobile;
Marked the gruff old man as his garb marked his chore.

The Merosska crypt was pristine and large;
A recent addition purchased by a young family;
Mostly as a symbol of their aristocratic charge;
And the sight of Thurl's post-humous amnesty.

Following a search by Elivia's arcane eye;
The locksmith of Union 271 set to the task;
And opened the door with no mark left to lie;
Giving them entrance to that deathly cask.

Pulling the body out onto an unused sepulcher;
They found it within a cheap coffin;
And holding a body that lacked certain ruptures;
No trace of the injuries that had struck often.

S'Elliot left and returned with incense and tools;
To perform a ceremony of peaceful rest;
Removing the necromantic veil that made fools;
Of officials and others who saw only the crest.

With the Merosska deception clearly unveiled;
Marle sought out Bruldenthar and Mogren;
Finding the second in a state well-aled;
And the second in a library wrestling pen.

The former statue had taken up work with city guard;
As an adventurer on retainer for special cases;
Something which the officials found a bit hard;
But a semi-independent dwarf could reach the right spaces.

He spoke of a young dwarf named Gargosh Blusterhelm;
Who sought an artifact of Morgren's king;
Though at the time Mogren was no longer within the realm;
Torhild Flametongue's axe yet did sing.

Disappointed with the lack of knowledge;
The young archeaologist turned to the historian;
And within the bonds of Oghma's college;
Compared his notes in manner Valedictorian.

Bruldenthar confirmed and agreed with several points;
But suggested that Gargosh's quest was unnecessary;
Faced with many dangers and other counterpoints;
Though by now the young man had no wish to tarry.

The older dwarf did relate the legend of Orcsplitter;
And warned the axe had a will of its own;
A thirst for crusades would arise with flavor bitter;
In the wielder who walked in the stone.

The sage informed the bard and the assassin with her;
That Gargosh was staying in Yartar seeking funding;
And would be there until a thing did spur;
The quest into action with a ballad on lips humming.

As the dwarven sage asked for Marle's tale in return;
Aengus the assassin, slipped into the crowd;
And left to seek information on his own to earn;
Allowing Marle the spotlight moments most proud.

The tiefling's story stirred the Oghma priests;
To scratch out the words upon parchment with pen;
While many of their order sparred with power of beasts;
In the arena surrounded by the library within.

Then aasimar reported her findings to Lady Silverhand;
With a surprise offer coming to her consideration;
A Lord of Waterdeep masked and hidden within the band;
And within the Alliance in an exceptional position.

As she accepted the matter a new interest appeared;
Floating overhead a massive stone castle;
Followed by a dignitary titanically geared;
A cloud giant speaking of rogue giants making a hassle.

Leaving Elivia to be on hand to see a drunken dragonborn;
A knight of Silverymoon born of a tiefling bloodline;
A hunter out of the elven forests with an arrow like a thorn;
And a half-born celestial through him ancient light did shine.

These adventurers she was part of the decision to send north;
But then did they have their own troubles to face;
As the siege of Riverguard was planned in Gauntlet's hearth;
By Fennle and lieutenants of the Samular trace.

The band traveled north with only one stop remaining;
To see the Dark Lady at Rundreth Manor;
A shadow dragon of ancient sorrow and mourning;
Whom the Zhentarim wished to deal with more.

The negotiations started well enough;
With the dragon speaking through an illusory drow;
Familiar to Lohn from recent dream stuff;
The duergar stayed in thoughts behind the dragon's brow.

Information for information the dragon did trade;
About the cultists she found intolerable to her peace;
Before her their news, piece by piece, they laid;
And received in return a new puzzle piece.

Nurvureem, the name the dragon claimed, spoke of many things;
Of a drow heretic building a shrine in the darkest depths;
Below where Tyar-Besil would house the place a hammer sings;
There did Vizeran Devir craft four cursed artifacts.

Also to their knowledge of Yan C Bin she added;
With names like Olhydra of the Crushing Wave;
And Ogremoch who by all life was maddened;
Lastly Imix the Eternal Flame who ashes did crave.

At last though as Nurvureem's illusion turned to withdraw;
A memory rang true and sharp through her mind;
The illusion froze and shadows flooded around them all;
And dark eyes in the edges of the murk they did find.

As the shadow dragon sought to question the body of a murderer;
Worn now by a the locksmith of union 271;
Questioning how the betrayer of her one drow daughter;
Did bizarrely stand in piece but one.

Lohn kept calm and unafraid as the dragon demanded;
And turned to Elivia to confirm what she knew;
That the Trickster's Gauntlet had a joke played;
And given her the body of wielder with whom it was through.

Nurvureem reluctantly withdrew her terrible rage;
Trusting the word of Mystra's priestess;
And allowed that Lohn's body still owed her a wage;
In the form of a daughter sent to Lloth's breast.

Leaving behind as the shadows receded;
Marle played the greatest number of her time;
A song of soothing and tragedy blended;
In a cathartic melody and intricate rhymes.

The offerings of romantic fiction and beautiful gown;
Were left behind at the dragon's porch;
As they traveled onward toward the path down;
North past the town where it all began: Red Larch.

Stopping briefly for food and rest and to pass on orders;
Lohn collected their prize from the Zhentarim bakery;
Before they moved on north to Scarlet Hall borders;
Held now by Emerald Enclave rangers rather than cult fakery.

They received tale of the Gauntlet's siege;
Pointing to crows and smoke arising south and east;
And to Talindra they gave the respect of a liege;
Reporting that the passage below had been released.

Lohn slipped on their belt of gender flexibility;
And found their body once again conforming to male;
Though the Trickster's Gauntlets had not the docility;
To let it's prank be so easy to make fail.

An illness and pain swept through the locksmith's form;
As they went to bed that night for the quest tomorrow;
They would wake again with something outside the norm;
Another wielder's shape which the Gauntlets would borrow.

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