City of Splendors

Episode XV Recap

Beauty and the Beasts

Their next goal clear, the party approached the massive stone doors of High Priestess Luk’Tharin’s chamber. In a flourish of dexterity, Laire disarmed the trapped door, granting them access to the massive temple beyond. Within, the group was ambushed by Shursh, the High Priestess’ fearsome spider guardian, whom they dispatched with finesse. After dealing with another celestial insectoid beast, they found the priestess herself barricaded behind a seemingly impenetrable wall of reinforced webbing. While Havard attempted cautious experimentation, Vyurek wasted no time blasting a hole in the wall with his trademark fireball.

High Priestess Luk’Tharin was ready for them, but the party’s strength proved too great, and she was quickly slain before her entourage of guards could even come to her rescue. Having finally defeated all their enemies, the adventurers found only a brief moment of respite before the ghoulish Paladin Fidelio appeared before them yet again.

This time, Fidelio’s nature had changed. He granted the party the choice of completing the third and final task in exchange for his knowledge of the great secret of Undermountain. Halaster, he revealed, was dead. The infamous Mad Mage was killed while attempting to complete a spell to protect Undermountain from a great impending doom, using a tool of incredible power known as the Runestone. Meanwhile, warring factions of Drow and Dopplegangers fought to gain control of the device, in hopes of utilizing it to their own ends. Furthermore, agents of an ancient evil faction of liches known as The Twisted Rune had already infiltrated Undermountain and the city above, moving to undermine Halaster’s efforts. By finding the Runestone and stopping the invaders, Fidelio suggested the party could halt — or at least delay — a catastrophe that could destroy Waterdeep as they know it.

After sharing these dark revelations, the party fulfilled their end of the bargain and was teleported to a nest of Umber Hulks deep within the bowels of Undermountain. Here, they fought through a trio of guardians to find the Psi-Hulk, a massive creature imbued with psionic powers from the crystals protruding from its skull. Throughout the battle, the beast employed its mind control powers to confuse members of the party, turning them against one another. But once again, they emerged victorious, allowing Fidelio to finally complete the ritual that would grant him freedom from his terrible curse.

Just when the party thought Fidelio had betrayed them as he disappeared in a flash of light, a portal opened before them, and out crawled Preelix, the friendly portal drake the group had first encountered in Belkram’s Tomb. A companion of Fidelio’s, Preelix offered the party safe transport to anywhere familiar within Undermountain. Taking him up on this offer, they were whisked away to the Helmwatch, where Preelix left them with a pendant that would summon him whenever they should need him in the depths of Undermountain.

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