Dearest Uncle and Cousins,
On our return to Zeif from the Temple of Shame, we had some time to explore the city. Kylie was kind enough to treat us women to a day at the spa. I took the opportunity to ask their advice as to Villius’s theory that Jack is “sweet on” me. They all seemed to agree. I’m still not sure what to make of that, but their responses told me that it isn’t something I should be too concerned about.
We returned to Geoff where Sir Christopher gathered us and the various ambassadors to discuss things. It seems Bartholomew’s alternate self is gathering “boogiemen” from the Demi Plane of Dread. The Heroes of the Key had experience battling these monsters, and Sir Christopher expressed a great deal of worry at the thought of an organized army of them.
Not long after, Qui received a message that her sister-in-law was having a baby, so we quickly departed to the Isle of Pearls. Our reception there was quite warm and the Umari family welcomed us. We decided to supplement the guard on the family in case Haruka chose such a vulnerable moment to attack. Fortunately, our worries were for nothing, though we did have the chance to speak with some of the Umari’s about their wayward daughter in an effort to learn more about her.
Tulla had another dream about her sister and a workshop. There were priests of the Mad God putting spirits in black crystals that were then used to power Taren’s clockwork creations. I’m not at all sure what kinds of things that poor mad girl would be making, but doubt it means anything good for us.
Leaving Qui to reunite with her family, the rest of us returned to Geoff where Sir Christopher and the Queen had prepared things for us to go into the ruins of the City of Shattered Glass. They were able to open the magical shielding so that we could enter, but once inside we were on our own.
We found the ground littered with shards of broken crystal. It was Idrys who realized that the reason we saw no bodies was that the souls of all the inhabitants of the city were trapped inside the broken glass. Twisted elven creations and undead remnants of the native Flan attacked us as we headed deeper into the city towards the citadel. Evidence of the former beauty of the place was everywhere, but so was the corrupting touch of the Archlich.
The church of Sehanine Moonbow had a strange, dark energy surrounding it, so we decided to investigate. Getting closer, we were attacked by undead treants and mithril golems. Perhaps alerted by her distorted elven presence, Idrys noticed what looked to be the high priestess before the rest of us — and behind her was Bartholomew who tried to use his powers of fear on several of us. The elven priestess used a poisoned dart on Idrys that nearly infected him with the “severing” disease that Bart had crafted.
And that was when Ardes discovered the crystal dragon under the control of the mad priestess. We scrambled to stay out of it’s way, while noticing the black metal bands on various points of the dragon’s body. Realizing that was how it was being controlled, our archers and mages targeted the bands in an attempt to free the beast. Ardes used his impressive speed to get past Bartholomew and snatch the box that contained the fragment of the Song of Ages.
Using his Wings of Flying, Villius landed on the dragon’s back and broke the last of the bands. At which point, the poor dragon polymorphed himself before passing out and plummeting out of the sky. Wounded, we gathered the dragon and ran towards the outskirts of the city, not at all confident in our ability to battle Bartholomew AND a 10,000 year old mad elven priestess. When we returned later with reinforcements, they were long gone.
We spoke to the Queen of Geoff about what we had found. She theorized that the elven priestess had fallen to the worship of the Mad God or Incabulos. The crystal dragon may be able to tell us more once he recovers.