Sunday, February 6, 2011

Isle Imperium: Episode 1.05

A more advanced version of the Thornthumb
shard, which allowed Catalina to avoid pitfalls.
Returning to Finger Cave, the party is beset with a variety of troubles, including numerous pitfalls (fortunately negotiated by CATALINA), a shadowy flying predator, the heavier and more corrosive ashfall, and the loss of three shards (Sanomagus, Cepi Monstrum, and Specialis Vesica), apparently to the strong winds.

After fending off the flyer and doing their best to mark the spot where the shards were lost, they attain shelter, where it is decided (after a startling but thankfully uneventful confrontation with a manticore attempting to seek shelter in their cave) that their best recourse is to return to the mausoleum of search of the supplies that the humans they saw earlier presumably would have stored.

As they take turns resting and keeping watch, they experience multiple earth tremors, which they soon deduce is attributable to the active volcano that VARIAN (with his new clarity of eyesight from the Nunzio Caecus shard) identifies nearby. Following the terrifying experience of Varian becoming acquainted with the shard and his summoned entity, CARNELIAN, they return to the mausoleum, suffering significant damage along the way, spotting a new cave en route, and transforming their supply sled into a sort of mobile shelter.

At the mausoleum, they find that the earth tremors have caused significant damage, leaving both human and inhuman corpses behind in their wake. Defeating a Chainer, a Puppeteer, and several Bone Golems, they manage to locate some supplies as well as the apparent remains of Bartomeo’s missing daughter Rima, who has become a sort of zombie. Continuing on (and opting to leave an apparently terminally injured pit creature to its fate), they enter a hidden door and find themselves in a corridor of hewn stone, which is guarded by four Will o’ Wisps.

Dispatching the creatures, they press on into a wider chamber with a table and steps leading down to an area where they discover an evidently dormant Bone Dragon. Choosing discretion as the better part of valor, they retreat to the upper chamber, to which they are soon followed by a man calling himself GENARIUS, who clearly bears a shard similar to Ossis Potior. He is fairly cordial with them and they exchange names (with only ALECTO opting to conceal at least her full name), despite the party’s wary refusal of his offer to trade shards (which he refers to as ‘stones’).

Genarius takes his leave of the group and goes back downstairs, whereupon Varian promptly commences to spy on him, eavesdropping on the man’s conversation with an unnamed woman below. Aside from naming the terminated Wight as ‘Aelurius’, they also mention their amazement that the party is composed of no less than seven shard bearers; their decision (spearheaded by Genarius) to leave the party their “claim” on the ongoing “small Catastrophe”; and an intimation that, possibly, they have traveled backwards in time from the future.

Following this, the pair makes rather dismayingly short work of the Bone Dragon, and thereafter disappears.

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