Call to Arms

Child of Malice, Part 9
Emberlyn

The PCs assault the temple of Malice and defeat a barbed devil, 15 cultists and Emberlyn, fire mage and consort of Malebrant. Sova slays Emberlyn with her rapier. Two cultists are taken prisoner, the rest are slain and the devil is destroyed. Anselmo sanctifies the temple and they claim a treasure chest.

(Serious, epic ass-kicking. Level up to 6th!)

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Child of Malice, Part 8
Bring the Fight to the Enemy

The day after facing Malebrant the Caetari question their prisoners and confirm the location of the main Temple of Malice is in the Undercity, not far from where the PC’s captured Deacon Karas.

Rested and equipped with 4 potions of greater healing from the Temple of Caetar, the PCs go to destroy or at least disrupt the cult on it’s own territory. They battle 4 gargoyles.

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Child of Malice, Part 7
Malebrant

Anselmo stations the 20 House Guard and 20 Vanguard in a perimeter around the merchant’s house to ensure no one escapes. Then they demand entry in the name of the The Chamber of Five and kick in the door.

Malebrant is there, dressed like a noble, along with a female mage, 3 Cult Fanatics, 4 Cultists and several citizens waiting to be initiated into the cult of Malice.

The initiates and the mage make their way out the back door and encounter some of the waiting Vanguard. Three are killed, two escape and the rest are captured. Another group of House Guard and Vanguard coming to help is hit by the mage’s fireball before she escapes. Two buildings are on fire and the guards struggle to quench the flames.

Inside the house the PCs fight a pitched battle Malebrant and his cultists. As the last cultist falls, Malebrant is backed into a corner. Dorn lands two massive hits on Malebrant with the Fellhammer and the fiend has had enough. He swears revenge and vanishes in a puff of brimstone.

Outside, they find a small crown has gathered, drawn by the battle. Sova persuades them that the Vanguard is keeping them safe and sends them home, but some view the raid as an unwarranted attack by the Caetari on civilians.

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Child of Malice, Part 6
Hate Rally

The PCs meet with Lord Glotton Tyron and the Champion of Caetar. They discuss plans for Rookhaven, the cult and Evard Zollis’ crimes.

The next day Sova escorts Evard back to one of her family’s gardens, when Titus Zollis (Evard’s father) calls his son to account for his treason. Evard owns his actions but begs Titus and Glotton not to send forces to Rookhaven. “It will be the ruin of the Zollis clan.” Titus executes Evard to appease Glotton. Harsh justice in Felleg’Avin.

Sova and her father speak about what comes next. The Chamber of Five may be asking Estaria for help, for they have some of the best rangers in the world and what the city needs most now is information about the enemy. Glotton gives Sova leave to fight if she must. He confesses she is the best suited of his heirs to lead their house when Glotton is gone.

The night of the cult meeting Anselmo brings 20 trusted guards of House Tyron and 20 Vanguard; they stay hidden in a nearby workshop. Over 1000 people show up to speak against the Dunsarro and House Fairbourne. There is no explicit mention of Malice, so Anselmo allows the meeting to break up pacefully. Anselmo and Sova (disguised) pretend to support these ideas and try to get invited to see Malebrant, but as newcomers they are just intrudiced to lower-level cult leaders. Instead Kendal (invisible) follows some initiates to a nearby merchant’s house and finds Malebrant and a mage waiting with about 15-20 followers. Kendal goes in and out undetected and reports back.

Outside, the PCs wait with 20 warriors and 20 clerics, ready to drop the hammer on the cult leadership.

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Child of Malice, Part 5
Zone of Truth

Anselmo interrogates the prisoners at the Temple of Caetar. Champion Dras is going to address The Chamber of Five so he takes a brief report and leaves the questioning to Anselmo and Brother Talas Heamy. Talas casts zone of truth and Kendal casts detect thoughts while Anselmo questions the prisoners.

The cleric is Deacon Karas Farthien (Olivetti, from Alesha). He was a fisherman who joined the cult 7 years ago after a money-changer took his home, his boat and ruined his livelihood. Karas’ wife and child took ill and died as a result of their poverty.

Kendal catches a thought of a meeting to take place in 3 days at a training hall in Riston’s quarter of Felleg’Avin, and Malebrant is supposed to be there. They confirm this with Evard Zollis when they question him.

They also learn Raven Rustheart was a devotee of Malice.

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Child of Malice, Part 4
Race in the Dark

The party tries to return to the surface with the cleric of Malice they captured as the cult tries to stop them.

Evard Zollis and his brothers-in-arms Allandro and Gant politely ask Sova to leave the cleric behind. They seem surprised the party is here if they haven’t come to worship Malice. The party duels the Zollis mercs over who gets the cleric and wins handily. The mercenaries are good to their word and follow them back to the temple of Caetar.

They take a short rest, hiding in a small room. Evard mentions the leader of the cult is a man named Malebrant, and he tries to convince Sova that she’s backing the wrong side.

Moving on, the group cuts their way through a dozen goblins and 3 Spined Devils before finally reaching the streets.

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Child of Malice, Part 3
You don't belong here!

Rested and ready, the PCs and Kendal return to the Tyron catacombs. Searching the area they find a goblin arrow and Dorn picks up the goblin’s trail, which leads them deeper into the Undercity.

A squad of 12 goblins attacks and is quickly defeated. Pursuing the fleeing goblin survivors, Dorn leads the group to a large cylindrical room dropping deep below them. It can only be crossed by a narrow bridge and is guarded by 8 giant spiders. Using the narrow archway as a choke point the party destroys the spiders without getting poisoned.

After a short rest, the party follows the goblin trail and finds a large square chamber full of 20 Grimlocks worshiping with a cleric of Malice (Cult Fanatic). The capture the cleric and slay the Grimlocks.

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Child of Malice, Part 2
An Ancient Hatred

While the PCs restore some order to the desecrated crypt, Dorn notices a black cat watching them. It runs off and he sees it was waiting beneath an old religious carving from the cult of Malice. More line the hallway every 20 feet.

This leads the group to a huge tomb (20’ ceilings, over 100’ wide) belonging to Cadmus Tyron, leader of House Tyron over 500 years ago, his hatred of the Bloodwicks has turned him into a Wight. He has 12 zombies at his command, some slain members of the Caetari Redguard.

Cadmus smells the blood of his ancient rivals and demands they turn over Kendal. They defend her and destroy the undead. Sova takes bracers of protection (+1 AC) from the dust of her ancestor.

Brother Dalca blesses and re-inters the remains in the tomb. Dorn finds a way to the surface nearby, after some discussion they agree to go home and rest up before having another try at finding the cult.

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Child of Malice, Part 1
The Crypt of Diano

Anselmo meets with the Champion of Caetar and discusses the growing threat from the cult of Malice in Felleg’Avin. With the Campion and most of the Vanguard focused on plans to retake Rookhaven, it’s up to Dalca to learn what he can about the cult. (If the opposition is too strong, the Vanguard will assist.)

Dorn is comfortable in the Tyron estates, yet it’s clear everyone is repulsed by his appearance the family tries to be polite and make him welcome. They have a long history with Hammerfall. Sova enjoys her brief time back with her family and take part in a private ritual to Vesta along with her mother and sister.

The PCs meet with Kendal Bloodwick at the Fountain of the Lost Children. She is dressed for travel. Kendall confirms Sova is now safe, the Bloodwick’s have dropped their case against her with an understanding the Tyrons will do nothing to embarrass Kalen Rustheart, like reveal how Kalen ignored the orders of The Chamber of Five.

Kendall learned what she could about the captive the Grimlocks killed. He was a bricklayer who disappeared repairing the sewer. They all agree to track the Grimlocks and discover what connection they have to the cult of Malice and the bloody hand.

Exploring the Undercity, the party comes across a swarming pile of 20 giant rats. Kendall obliterates half of them with a lightning bolt, some flee and the fighters clean up the rest. The rats were swarming over 3 dead dwarves (Fellhammer clan) who were killed by arrows. One of the bodies has a hand carved horn of Caetar, which Anselmo keeps.

Still trying to track the Grimlocks, the PCs enter a catacomb and stumble on the ancient crypt of Diano Tyron, an ancestor of Sova’s from about 1500 years ago. The crypt has been defiled by 8 ghouls, and a pitched battle ensues. Sova and Anselmo are briefly paralyzed but the cleric recovers and turns the 3 remaining ghouls, who flee.

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Rogues, Part 5
The Undercity

Sova and Dorn sneak into Felleg’Avin through a labyrinth of hidden underground tunnels known as the Undercity. Home at last, she reunites with her family and tells them of her plans.

The next morning the Tyron family has breakfast with Dorn and Anselmo. Brother Dalca tells them about the cult presence in the city. Sove asks Anselmo to contact Kendal Bloodwick and ask to meet in the very alley where her cousin Ellesh was slain.

Without her disguise, Sova cannot move freely about the city, so they again travel underground, along the same path she used many times to meet Ellesh in secret. There in the Undercity they see the sign of the bloody hand, proving the cult uses these same tunnels. They also hear a muffled cry and movement.

They find a group of 8 Grimlocks carrying a captive and give battle. They slay all of the Grimlocks but find the captive has already died from bite wounds.
ody of the captive the Grimp
The PC’s meet with Kendal. She is excited to see Anselmo, (especially since he asked her to come alone!) but is wary when he introduces her to Sova. Sova quickly explains that she did not kill Ellesh, and allows Kendal to detect thoughts to confirm the truth of it. Kendal is shaken, but apologizes to Sova for thinking she was a murderer.

Sova also tells Kendal about her brother Kalen’s activity fighting slavers near Dellenshire. Sova asks Kendal to broker a deal with the Bloodwicks: if they drop their case against Sova, the Tyrons in turn will not tell the other nobles that Kalen is flaunting their decree against attacking the slavers.

With all of that settled, Dorn, Anselmo and Sova return to the Undercity while Kendal summons the city guard to deal with the body of the captive the Grimlocks killed.

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