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Sewn Up

Sprocket’s Journal

Nightal 4, 1373 DR, Pommeville

We very quickly decided to shut the door on the magic-eating nishruu, but still wanted to get the book out of the ring of runes. Maiyr was unable to reach the book; a wall-like force prevented him when he got close. Nosila decided to try going in alone, after we removed any items that were magical from her. She was in the room for a few seconds when the creatures decided to attack her anyway. Maiyr surmised that there must be something in the area to help us reach the book safely, so we decided to search the place room by room. We lucked out on the first room. Moldy sacks of grain, casks of wine turned to vinegar and a huge barrel of salt were inside. I immediately got an image of fried potatoes in my mind from Widget; luckily, my comrades decided one of these ingredients would likely help us get pass the nishruu. I thought perhaps they wouldn’t be able to cross the salt if we put it in a line around us. Nosila went back down the hall and attracted the nishruu’s attention while Maiyr and I got handfuls of salt. Salt very definitely made the creatures shrink back, but Widget and I must radiate a lot of magic, as I was promptly attacked! Those bites hurt! Maiyr quickly dipped his blades in the vinegar and then salt, using what stuck to the blades to kill one of the crimson creatures. Nosila stuffed me into the barrel of salt, no doubt thinking I’d be safer. The pain of the salt on my open bite wounds made me pass out for a few moments. I came to just in time to see Nosila kill the other nishruu by flinging a shield full of salt on it. After I cast a quick cantrip to remove the remaining salt and vinegar from our clothes and skin, we headed back to the room with the book.

The book was still there, untouched by the nishruu. In spite of how Maiyr had been blocked by the circle of runes, I figured I must try to get to the book anyway, so I took a deep breath and stepped over the runes— and picked up the book! As I held the leather and brass bound book, a fire spell was suddenly implanted in my brain, and I realized I was holding Azuth’s Book of Infinite Spells. A few troubling thoughts passed through my mind. Did the lich set us up so that we’d find this? Was he unable to pass the ring of runes himself? Why couldn’t Maiyr pass through to reach the book?

For now, we were too beat up to do more than barricade ourselves the room and rest. We looked through the other treasure in the room too. We found two potions to provide healing, two vials of oil that can transform stone to flesh, and coins totaling nearly 800 gold pieces. Maiyr found chainmail and a scimitar that is cool to the touch; Nosila found some good leather armor, a very sharp longsword and a spear— all are magical, but I didn’t have spells prepared to identify them.

We rested for what must have been close to a day, until we felt we had the stamina to haul ourselves out of the ruins and look for a way across the big lake. As we emerged from the ruin’s stairwell, a familiar form was waiting for us— Nedrezzar! He was accompanied by four zombies, one of which was Nosila’s long-dead husband. Nosila threw her spear at the lich. While he attempted to pull it from his chest, I cast the fireball that Azuth’s tome had planted in my brain. The four zombies were instantly obliterated (may Nosila forgive me for destroying her husband before she could), and Nedrezzar looked none too happy with the attack.

Maiyr, meanwhile, had managed to get behind the lich, and he and Nosila kept at the undead cleric while I cast some sonic and missile spells at him. I kept close to the temple stairs, so I could duck in and out for cover— that lich wanted me dead!

When I was out of spells that wouldn’t harm my comrades, I tried firing my pistol— if it did damage to the lich, it certainly didn’t show. As much as I hated to cast spells that would harm my friends, I felt I had little choice—the lich would kill them if I didn’t. So, I lobbed two more fireballs at it, making sure to spread the damage between Maiyr and Nosila with the brunt of it on Nedrezzar. Thankfully, the second one dropped the lich, and my friends survived with a few burns. They were so relieved I don’t believe either even minded too much.

We searched the lich’s body for anything valuable, and anything that might hint on where its phylactery was. We found several undoubtedly magical items— a ring, a breastplate, a short spear and a heavy pick— and of course a holy symbol of Tiamat. And then, amazingly, we noticed a row of stitches along the side of the corpse’s torso. Slicing it open revealed a small ornate box with a copper band. Who would have guessed Nedrezzar’s phylactery was inside Nedrezzar himself?

Now, I had hope that perhaps Nedrezzar had a portal between here and Pommeville. Though we’d only just broken camp a few minutes earlier, we were now so tired and, well, burnt, we decided to rest up for a while again. Maiyr spent some of the time trying to figure out how to destroy the phylactery.

By the next morning we were feeling well enough to travel, so we decided to make another attempt to find a way off the island. As we were leaving the ruins though, we stopped to look at the very realistic statue of the wizard. Something that had been stuffed in the back of my mind for weeks finally surfaced. There had been a wizard called Malvis from Pommeville, absent when we first arrived, and absent still when we were last there. We hadn’t thought anything of it; after all, wizards do travel. My companions must have come to similar conclusions, and we all decided quickly that this “statue” would be a good candidate for that Oil of Stone to Flesh that we’d found.

In an instant, the wizard returned to his more lively state. After introductions were made (and we learned that he was, indeed, Malvis), we tried to get him up to speed on what all had happened in Pommeville. Luckily, he knew of a portal from this island that would take us back right near his tower on the edge of town, but first he wanted to retrieve Azuth’s Tome from the ruins. He’d been trying to retrieve it nearly six months earlier, when an encounter with a beholder left him frozen till we found him.

From what I’d remembered told to me by the townsfolk, this Malvis was an asset to Pommeville and having him home sooner rather than later would be a good thing, so I told him Azuth’s Tome was in my possession, but that I’d be more than happy to trade him for another lesser, but useful magic item after we disposed of the phylactery. Malvis suggested that tossing it in the lava created where the silver rod rested would be a suitable end for this last piece of Nedrezzar.

Now, however, it was time to return to Pommeville. Malvis took us to the portal straight away and we stepped through, arriving just where he said we would. The town looked deserted. It made sense that the zombies had all fallen with the destruction of the lich, but where were the gnolls and few remaining humanoid slaves?

We entered the tower with Malvis; either he is a terribly messy person, or someone else had been through looking for something— the place was a shambles.

Posted by Kristin on April 21, 2005, 20:19 | Sprocket’s Journal