The Demons Bowl
The Despair were challenged to head out to the demon kingdom to seek out a scrying bowl the House Mother Agna desired. The crew were quickly provisioned and headed out. They were also sent our with an emissary who set all of the Drows teeth on edge. On the way their Joruus proved himself in practice as decent gunner and under Vixia’s orders was to relieve Kalan. Unfortunately they were attacked by giant eagles and in a panic Joruus managed to shoot the bolt through the side of the ship and damage the bolt thrower. Henkle the Duergar dwarf engineer fumed at Joruus shouting about the expense and time it would take to repair the bolt thrower. Joruus was immediately demoted and Kalan restored to gunner, but without a bolt thrower at his point. The rest of the crew killed several eagles and saw off the rest and the journey commenced.
At one part a strange magic washed over the crew and the ship it was emanating from the emissary. As the pilot and most of the crew succumbed to its influence the Despair increased its speed and dived towards the canyon floor heavily populated by giant evergreens. Kalan himself was taken over by the thrill feeling and was unaware of the danger. The emissary threw off his long coat revealing himself to be a demon. He unfurled his wings and loped to the bow of the ship cackling with laughter and evil delight. He had the pilot completely under his control so he sought the fastest speed as the ship recklessly weaved in and out of the tops of the giant firs and just inches from the edges of the cliffs walls in the canyon. Some of the Drow that managed to resist the magic started to bring the others around and managed to get the pilot to regain his senses and control. The demon sensed is loss of persuasion let the magic drop and the Despair quickly gained height and lost the excessive speed. As most were under the control of the demon they were unaware of the danger and could just sense the loss of thrill and adrenaline that had been pumping through their system just a few seconds before. As they came to and Kalan with many others expressed their distaste for a demon on their ship. Captain Vixia set them to their tasks and informed the crew that the demon was their honoured guest. None really new how close they came to complete destruction in just a heartbeat.
The crew arrived at their destination just after midnight. The tower they sought stood on a hill with half a mile of open ground around it in the middle of a forest. The Drow spotted a camp fire with several beastmen sleeping around it while two kept watch. By sneaking up on the two watchmen the Drow were able to take the Ibixian’s by surprise and killed most in their sleep. They covered the bodies to make appear they were sleeping and disposed of the watchmen’s bodies in the woods.
The tower was more like a keep and the Drow decided on a lateral strategy to get in. Gul and Kalan would levitate and make themselves invisible to gain access to the top of the tower. They would kill any watchmen on the top then make their way down to allow the others in. They were met with two guardsmen on the top who they quickly dispatched. When they looked down they could see a large patrol of Ibixian’s walk around the tower and head off to the north. They then made there way carefully down through the tower to the ground floor. To their surprise they did not meet any opposition on the whole way down – the tower appeared deserted. When they arrived at the door they signalled for the others and the group were quickly inside the tower. After making their report to Bae it was decided to check out the lower underground floors. In this part the crew were met with heavy resistance fighting off many Ibixians. At one time Bae fell badly wounded but Kalan used his magic to heal her. In the next and final chamber there were beset with more Ibixians and a Mind Flayer. The Drow were spared a direct assault by his dreadful creature with a direct hit from a viper bolt. In this last big battle Bae was killed and Kalan thoroughly enraged was also heavily wounded. Only with the support of Gul who dispatched the Ibixian standing over Kalan did he survive himself.
The crew healed themselves and then started looting the lower corridors seeking out the scrying bowl. The party became split Kalan and Joruus chasing down a small group of remaining Ibixians while Gul, Dreggs, Zaen, Kargoth and the Priestess Syltanya went off down another corridor. At one point as Kalan and Joruus fought the Ibixians Kalan was hoping to use this as further training for the merchant when he noticed Joruus slow his attack and then pull back from the fight. Kalan briefly caught the strange look over Joruus’ face but then had to throw himself in to dispatch the remaining two beastmen. Joruus turned and ran down the corridor to where the rest of the group were.
Kalan later found out that the Priestess Syltanya with the rest of the group had come across a strange almost mutated spider. As the priestess had prayed to commune with it the spider had ignored her, and had attacked her instead. The rest of the crew had then been forced to kill this tainted creature – not something that they could admit to back at Shanizar. Tainted or not to the followers of Lloth to kill a creature of their God was sacrilege and the penalty would be death. Kalan could not help but notice that the wound on the priestess looked more like the bite of 3” of Drow steel far bigger than the fangs of the mid sized spider lying in bits next to her body. He kept his mouth shut and accepted their explanation. Joruus had said he had heard the alert and had run back to help. The demon had shouted with glee as Sultanya died and disappeared to gather her soul.
Since the crew were left to themselves they located the scrying bowl and several thousand in gold. They each took their own share leaving enough for the captain not to be too suspicious. Kalan took the scrying bowl away and tried it out. He was tempted to try and locate Cero but realised it worked on locations rather than people so daringly tried spy of the House Mother Agna. To his surprise it worked but at that present time nothing of any real interest was happening. Another bonus for the crew was to uncover a complete laboratory. The crew set to packing up all of the equipment in order to install it at House Kobra. This would give them the additional benefit of creating their own potions and trying their own homemade spells. The crew then returned to the Despair and then back to Shanizar. Captain Vixia was not at all pleased to find out that she had lost her first mate and a priestess on this quest. Since the stories of the crew all matched she had to take them as truth. To Kalan and Gul’s chargrin Vixia named Birz as her new first mate.