Location: The vicinity of Sihoan, the North
I am taking the opportunity of a short rest to update my notes.
The gnolls that attacked us must have been at this business for a while for they had collected roughly 20 human prisoners in a nearby camp. Imagine our surprise when we found a dishevelled Father Blackwell with the commoners. When I enquired as to how he could have fallen so far in such a short period (we had seen him at most a week prior) he indicated that our last meeting had instead taken place six months prior. He also informed us that Helm had apparently been slain by noble Tyr! I was a little troubled by the apparent coincidence between said incident and our quarry’s purpose, deicide. However, a short discussion with the father seemed to support the old adage that relation does not equate causation. Indeed, after a period of mourning, he had joined the forces trying to stop the god-killer’s rampage and was able to share what information he had collected before being captured by gnolls. Of particular interest was the notion that the creature has apparently stopped its travel.
Given our paltry knowledge of the creature’s specific intentions, we cannot simply assume that the creature harbours no further murderous intent. Tellan agreed that our plan to return to the strange shrine was probably the wisest course under the circumstances. I attempted to leave the other prisoners in the Kelemvorite’s hands, but he insisted to join us in our quest. I have no means to forbid him to do so, but I am still concerned by this stranger in our midst. Aaron, Franz and I have far too many untied threads in our past and some of our enemies have shown themselves to be far too “tricksy”. It must be said that his help has been so far crucial and that I am quite grateful. I simply wish that we could know each others true selves more clearly. Also, in the absence of a secure hold, the gnolls’ other captives will join us in our trek. A risky endeavour, but perhaps better than the alternatives.
Under Franz’ guidance, we set out for the shrine. After a time, we crossed a small unexpected canyon, likely the result of the blue flames chaotic effect on the land. Beyond the pass we reached a strange barrier. It stretched as far and as high as the eye can see. It reminded me of a passage I had read in an old tome at the Wizards’ College in Silverymoon. The passage spoke of rare instances wherein the world itself attempts to isolate potentially-reality-shattering (it is unfortunate how the common lexicon is so limited) singularities and judging by the chaotic state of things on our side of the membrane, we had been sealed off like an infection.
As I explained this to my cohorts and considered sending Ma’el through to test the effect on creatures, Lord Hornblade appeared on the other side of the obstruction and began frantically gesturing for us to stop. Although sound would not cross the divide, we quickly began communicating with written messages using the same cantrip I use to teach my classes. A quick demonstration showed that matter leaving the occlusion became unstable. As for matter coming in, I remained unsure as it simply failed to appear within our line of sight. It could simply be shunted in time and/or space, but, without knowing more, it was as, if not more, dangerous as the explosions. Lord Hornblade told us a little about the “bubble”; it is of irregular shape, mostly follows the god-killer’s path and appears to be slowly expanding. We told him of the shrine and its apparent relation to the monster and he agreed that we should continue on as before. He offered some course corrections to account for the land’s new morphology. Finally, with some data concerning the state of energy on our side of the barrier, old Thuderspells was able to formulate improvised enchantments with which to convey a panoply of equipment to replace our lost magical items. It took over 30 minutes for the bundle to cross and it required the sacrifice of a mightily enchanted cloak, but it was humbling to see such mastery of the Art.
On our way back through the canyon pass, we had a chance to put our new equipment to the test as we were ambushed by a group of creatures led by a gibberlng mouther. Here Father Blackwell quickly illustrated that his time away from us hadn’t demished his fighting prowess by starting the fight with an impressive use of extraplanar banishment. Indeed, thanks to his prayer, by the time the mouther had made its way back to the field of battle, we had dispatched all of the its allies and barely had a scratch to show for it. Simultaneously, our other priest friend stayed back with the non-combatant members of our group and ensured their safety as he did a little later when we dispatched a group of trolls and drow. As usual, the dark elves’ presence sent me in a reckless fury, but we were nonetheless able to make quick work of the group. My only concern is that at least one of my cousins managed to flee.
All in all: a good day; we are all becoming more comfortable with our somewhat altered abilities as indicated in our last two encounters and Father Blackwell and Lord Hornblade shed a significant amount of light on our current predicament. Now, let us hope that the cerulean fire has spared our destination.