I quite literally do not have words to describe most of what I saw in Castle Greyhawk, but I’ll do my best. If it doesn’t make much sense to you, you are in the same position as I.
Our ritual to contact Aislin seemed to work, though the concern was that it would leave the Codex of Infinite Planes in control of Bartholomew’s body and, consequently, in control of Castle Greyhawk. Faern was the only one who felt that Asmodeus might be preferable, though I have to confess in hindsight that he may have been right.
Getting into the castle was simple, and we were surprised to be met by Zagyg in the courtyard. It was quickly apparent, however, that this was not at all the Lord Mayor. He explained he was the Codex of Infinite Planes and that he had control of Bartholomew’s body while Incabulos and Asmodeus were fighting. He then put on a fake goatee and declared “I’m evil me!” Since the Codex very rarely got to “play,” he decided to make a game of things. He transformed the key to the chamber where the God Trap was into three glowing golden triangles. Tossing them into different parts of the castle, he informed us we would have to pass three trials, but once we got the pieces we would be able to enter the room where Pelor was held.
He also warned us that we would be cast in the parts of different “characters” during the trials and if we lingered to long, we would start to take on these characters personalities. He demonstrated by pulling some of our friends, including Frederick, Jeremy, and even Idrys’s demon to the courtyard and making them look… strange. I can’t really describe it, but they took on the appearance of sort human-ish animals. The Codex said we wouldn’t all participate in all of the trials, but that everyone would be there for the final one. He then waved his hand and sent us off.
I found myself dressed in a suit of very bizarre armor that had a green glass faceplate in place of a visor and what seemed to be a cannon that fired blasts of light on the end of one arm. Faern looked like some kind of ape, making him very agile, Idrys had a whip, and Jack… well he said he was a half-vampire? And he looked rather more effeminate than usual, though I’ll admit his clothes were quite dashing. Qui, Kylie, Ardes, and Tulla were with me, all looking very peculiar as well.
The ground seemed to move under our feet and we were forced to hurry forward, being assaulted by turtle creatures that were easily defeated if you jumped on them and toothy plant monsters. We came to a structure built of ladders where we had to dodge barrels that rolled down on us. At the top was a… brain monster. Fortunately, my cannon weapon seemed particularly effective against it and we managed to destroy the thing. We snatched up the first triangle piece and were teleported to the next trial.
This… was very strange. We were… horse people. Not centaurs! That would make sense. But multi-colored horse folks with strange emblems on our rumps. Tulla, Jevan, Jeremy, Idrys, Loreli, Villius, and Kylie were with me on this mad jaunt. We found ourselves in a forest with a foreboding castle in the distance. We headed in that direction, deciding not to linger. We were attacked by some strange wooden wolf monsters that had breath weapons of thorns. They didn’t give us too much trouble, but Tulla discovered she could magically produce a cannon that fired cakes, pies, streamers, confetti and other things that would be associated with a party. She seemed to enjoy that.
The castle was guarded by three sort of zombie pony monsters which morphed themselves into dark versions of Sir Christopher, Villius, and Jack. Villius, deciding he was offended, attacked his own mirror while we fought with the rest. I will say that I’m very glad Sir Christopher is counted among my friends. I wouldn’t want to have to fight him. Idrys wisely pulled out a daylight stone that Emperor Akihiro had blessed for him, banishing the dark dopplegangers in an instant. The doors to the castle opened and we snatched up the next triangle piece.
We found ourselves again in a forest with everyone in the group present now. Tulla had a pointed straw hat and blue coat, her face in so much shadow that only a pair of glowing orange eyes could be seen. Idrys looked stylish again in a wide brimmed red hat that boasted a large white feather. Ardes was covered head to toe in black, but he had a companion hound and a bag full of sharp items he could throw. Marsys was sporting a monkey tale along with her two daggers, and Kylie wore pure white robes edged with red triangle details. Everyone, in fact, looked quite bizarre, but the changes granted us some interesting abilities.
We fought some horrible plant monsters with toxic breath and little cactus men that fired needles and then fled. There was also a little green lizard man in a brown robe, carrying a lantern and a knife that Faern warned could instantly kill a person. Marsys discovered that she had the ability to make us all flee from the fight without being pursued and our mages were equipped with some powerful new spells. The last monsters was a gigantic, purpleish beast that tossed flaming rocks from the sky. Hanna was able to use her new, and impressive, leaping attack to finish it off.
At the end of the forest was a cave, the only place to go. Inside, the Codex waited, wearing clownish makeup and clothing fit for a jester. His powers were terrifying, however, and the fight was very difficult. Several of us were knocked out during the fight, though our friends got us back on our feet quickly. Upon his defeat, the last triangle piece appeared and we quickly grabbed it, not wanting to tempt anything else happening.
We were teleported back to the courtyard, thankfully back to our normal appearances. Though, Ardes wistfully mentioned that he missed his dog already.
- Yours devotedly
Castle Greyhawk explanations:
The Codex transformed the key into pieces of the Triforce (Legend of Zelda) and appears as Discord (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic) and Kefka (Final Fantasy 6).
Section 1 (Random Video Games and related):
Ardes: Captain N (Captain N: The Gamemaster), Qui: Mario (Super Mario Brothers), Faern: Donkey Kong, Idrys: Simon Belmont (Castlevania), Will: Samus Aran (Metroid), Tulla: Beemo (Adventure Time), Kylie: Shanoa (Castlevania: Harmony of Dispair), Jack: Alucard Tepes (Symphony of the Night)
Section 2 (My Little Ponies):
Idrys: Twilight Sparkle, Tulla: Pinky Pie, Jeremy: Rarity, Jevan: Applejack, Will: Rainbow Dash, Loreli: Fluttershy, Villius: Big McIntosh, Kylie: Zecora
Section 3 (Final Fantasy):
Tulla: Vivi (FF9), Ardes: Shadow (FF6), Loreli: Garnet (FF9) and Cloud (FF7), Faern: Barret (FF7), Villius: Fighter (FF1), Kyle: White Mage (FF1), Marsys: Zidane (FF9), Jevan: Wakka (FF10), Will: Cecil (FF4), Idrys: Red Mage (FF1), Qui: Squall (FF8), Hanna: Freya (FF9)