Abyss Modified-Session 35
Notes from the DM: Abyss Modified is a Fifth Edition Dungeons and Dragons campaign based on the Out of the Abyss prepublished adventure, so there might be spoilers if you are planning to play that campaign. It has home brew content mixed in to make it more unique and better facilitate fluctuating party numbers found when running a public game in a game store.
The party, tonight consisting of Thelrum, Orion, Drifting Cloud, Xanaphia, and Tamin, contacted their allies to fly above the dome of the Moon Well and drop a rope for them to climb out. They left the beholder behind, amazed the beast had not killed them. Back on their ship they contacted the Companion to see if their allies, Pulldiver’s Delvers, had finished up with the Thayan temple and heard back they were successful. The group decided to go to the temple on Chult next, the Sunset Mountains were not further away but sounded pleasant. While sailing above the water they watched for any strange monsters or demons and were lucky, nothing attacked or even noticed them.
Eventually they could see an island off in the distance, and as they approached, they noticed the corpse of a giant dragon turtle split in half, floating in the water. They remembered hearing this creature was a protector of the harbor of Port Nyanzaru and guessed they would not have to pay tribute, so they flew on. Once they found their way into port, they found the town deserted. The normal sounds and sights were missing. Thelrum used see invisibility and noticed a leather clad figure breaking into one of the building’s rooftop vents and called out to him as the group dropped to the city streets, sending their airship to circle above. The figure, startled, dropped the wooden venting cover and it clattered loudly to the street. The group paused, feeling an odd quaking in the streets and could hear something large approaching.
The group turned to see from two of the alleys two huge sized tyrannosaurus rexes, no longer living but undead. The beasts roared and the party went into action. Orion charged up to one of them and laid into it with multiple strikes and was close enough to see dozens of humanoid forms within the belly of the beast, also zombies, pushing against the ribs trying to reach out and grab Orion. Drifting Cloud prepared to turn the undead when they got into range and the second rex charged him and Thelrum. Divine energy coursed through Drifting Cloud and hit the rex, causing it to turn and flee, but not before it coughed up a zombie, which turned to ash from the divine energy. Tamin made his way into one of the buildings and closed the door, finding himself surrounded by unmoving husks, corpses that had been mummified rapidly. Xanaphia slung eldritch blasts at the wounded rex, scoring multiple hits. The wounded rex coughed up more zombies around Orion and attempted to attack him but failed to find its mark. The zombies were ineffective as well. The group could hear someone bumping around in one of the buildings, hearing someone say that the group seemed to have it handled. Thelrum blasted the wounded rex with more magic while the turned Rex fled into the quiet jungle. Tamin made his away to the second floor of his corpse building and could see out one of the windows and launched a few arrows at the wounded rex, which eventually fell and burst open, releasing the zombies. The group made wuick work of them. The door to one of the buildings opened and a leather armored mask wearing figure came out to thank the party for their intervention. They could see a fancy jade dagger on his hip.
The figure introduced himself as Ladwin, it turned out he was scouting for any survivors and loot when the party came along. The group was rightfully concerned and asked what happened to the city. Ladwin explained that a new guy showed up and was pissing off his boss, taking control of the jungle and making an army of the undead. The party inquired about Ladwin’s boss and was told he specialized in making tombs, one was here on the island, the other had been around for a long time. He mentioned the name Acererak and the group went pale. A few of them relayed what they knew about the Lich and his Tomb of Horrors and Tomb of Annihilation. Ladwin asked if they wanted to meet the boss and they unanimously said no. He mentioned that the rival was some guy named Orcus, the group was equally pale from that name as well, knowing that getting between a demon lord of undeath and a super powerful lich would be dangerous. Ladwin took off his mask, revealing a skull and scratched his bare skull before returning it to his face.
Drifting Cloud broke off from the group to ask for guidance. He asked if Orcus was still on the island, finding Anubis answering yes. He asked if Anubis wanted him to deal with Orcus, and was given a strange no. He asked for a sign from Anubis, and was answered yes. The Khopesh Drifting Cloud was wielding lit up, now glowing brightly. When he started walking around with it out it glowed brighter when pointed to the south eastern direction. The party got back on their ship, Ladwin tagging along, and headed the direction the sword told them to go.
They soared above the silent jungle, seeing large areas of devastation and places where demonic creatures were burrowing out of the ground. They chose to avoid all that nonsense. The sword led them to an abandoned lighthouse with golden flame iconography. The structure was overrun with plant life and the once glass covered atrium was completely shattered. From the deck of the ship they could see the torch or brazier for the top of the lighthouse was missing. When they made landfall, they went in the atrium windows and found numerous bodies of slain monks, now skeletal, laying around the ground. Drifting Cloud used eyes of the grave and they dinged as undead. He turned undead, causing a few to rise and flee into the jungle and another to stand up start mumbling about the snake men and the beacon. Thelrum cast detect magic and massive energies were radiating from the basement of the structure.
The group left the undead alone and made their way into the dark interior of the lighthouse, finding a large room stacked with bits of shipwrecks, broken furniture, lumber, kitchen supplies, and paper. The doorway was strange, there seemed to be numerous teeth set in lines across the threshold of the room. The room had a high ceiling and many of the items within were stacked about fifteen feet high, cutting off the party’s views of each other. They split up and started searching for the beacon and Thelrum could feel the magical energy at the edge of his spell, and suddenly it was charging towards him.
A large spell stitched creature with the body of gargantuan bipedal lion, odd mantis armor, and multiple eyes crashed through the garbage in the room, and around its neck was a large stone beacon. The group jumped into action. They were unsure if it was a construct or an undead, but either way they unloaded everything they had on the monster. Orion got in close and the beast knocked him down, it spread out its attacks, bowling over most of the party, mauled Drifting Cloud and Xanaphia /dealing massive damage, this monster was not messing around. Drifting Cloud put up a guardian of the faith behind it, dealing some nice damage. Thelrum attempted to banish it but the magic was resisted. Xanaphia cast eldritch blast and shot at the beast with her crossbow, hoping to get a bolt to stick for heat metal. One of her higher spells surged, causing her to teleport around every round. Drifting Cloud cast spiritual weapon, which followed the monster around, the khopesh glowing with radiant energy.
After a few attacks were traded they could hear Ladwin using a spell to talk to someone mentioning the terrifying monster. Moments later a figure walked out of a shadow. Covered in purple robes, metallic staff at hand, large demon faced amulet around its skeletal neck and a massive helm, Acererak entered the fray, and he was pissed. He threw magical bolts into the creature and granted Tamin greater invisibility. Ladwin jumped on the beasts back and started stabbing into it with his jade dagger.
Thelrum got in a great lightning bolt on the beast and could see the strange lich summoning a ball of pure darkness between his hands. Tamin used his sneak attacks to great effect, Drifting Cloud kept himself and everyone else alive while dropping toll the dead on the beast. Orion constantly was bashing on the beast with multiple landed punches and sword slashes. Xanaphia was able to land the killing blow with eldritch blast. They watched as Acererak passed the black orb of shadow over the body of the beast, disintegrating it slowly, and as he finished he grabbed Ladwin’s shoulder and they teleported away without a word to the group. The group took the beacon from the room and carried it up the lighthouse, finding a grove on the floor sized perfectly for it and lit it. the party gained another level for their struggle, now hitting 12th level.
The Abyss Modified table meets every Wednesday as part of a public weekly Dungeons & Dragons event.
Join us any Wednesday evening at Board Game Barrister—Mayfair!