Session 32 Expanded
10th thru 12th day of Ready’reat CY 621
Location: Cania 8th Plane of Hell – World Map
Map Tab Color: Green
Drexella welcomes you into her hut……
Ahhhh…. apprentice it is good to see you unharmed, warned you I did of danger, did I not? Powerful forces are at work… powerful indeed. Tell me of this creature, spare no details.
As you tell of the creature, you note the flash of two emotions surprise and fear.
Interesting apprentice, interesting and unfortunate; Illithids are creature of terrible evil and alien powers of the mind. I am afraid even someone as old and learned as I has limited knowledge of these creatures. I am certain that I can create an object or objects that would impede or perhaps even block these creature’s attempts of divination, however the creation of this item(s) will not be cheap and will take some time. In truth the warding strength of the item(s) would be greatly enhanced if I had one of these creatures’s brains or better yet one of their souls (provided they have one).
I am willing to cover the monetary cost of the creation of these charms; however I require payment of a different sort, in order to do so.
As you know from the incident at the grove I have made an enemy of Asmodeus by trying to bind his daughter Glasya over 3 centuries ago. At the time I had just finished apprenticing under the witch Iggwilv and learned much under her tutelage. After she imprisoned the Demon-lord Graz’zt, I thought that I could do the same but in my arrogance I aimed too high; my attempt to bind Glasya failed badly and I was barely able to escape with my life. Sufficed to say Glasya was not amused by my effort to bind her and sought terrible retribution. The bitch killed 2 of my former apprentices who were sister witches and one of my daughters.
For a while it appeared that I was doomed, that is when Baalphegor appeared to me. Baalphegor is the consort of Mephistopheles and she made me an offer I could not refuse (part of the offer granted protection from Glasya) but the cost was terrible. I had to sacrifice my eldest and only remaining daughter’s soul to Baalphegor in a horrific blood ritual and swear allegiance to Baalphegor for eternity. She became my new patron, and provided me with a new familiar a foul homunculus named Gorack. After 50 years or so Gorack became complacent and thought of me little more than a slave. I however am no one’s slave and in time was able to trick Gorack into magic jarring into my Druidic animal companion. I then bound his soul into my animal companion and placed my animal in a form of suspended animation. Even in the suspended state I could still commune with Gorack and receive my spells. After only a paltry decade I broke Gorack’s mind and will and all of his mistresses secrets were mine. With the secrets divined from Gorack, I was able to construct this hut and become very powerful with wards and binding magic.
I know that my daughter Zruxsilla has suffered unspeakable torment at the hands of Baalphegor. I also know that there is a shakeup brewing in the hells; an ancient power grows and casts its shadow over all the tidings in that unpleasant place, within five lives of man something terrible will awake I assure you. Decades ago I found out that Baalphegor had given my daughter’s soul to one of her consorts trusted dukes as a reward for the service he had performed. This vile creature is known as Bifrons, a mighty duke, who commands companies of ice devils into battle at the behest of Mephistopheles.
The Cold Duke rules the glaciers of Caina from his ice palace near Nargus, and appears both vigilant and loyal to Mephistopheles. Bifrons is a clear-headed, rather dispassionate philosopher. He enjoys arguments and contests of reason and logic, but does not let these distract him from more pragmatic concerns. (Bifrons is exceptionally intelligent and evil.) He has the awesome strength of a cloud giant. He bears an envenomed scimitar and a flail. He is immune to cold damage of all types.
My spy ensures me that Bifrons has been called away from Nargus to meet with Mephistopheles himself. It is very unlikely that he will take my daughter’s soul gem with him. This is the perfect time to strike.
In exchange for my daughter’s soul gem I will create your precious charms and give them to you.
I will not lie this is a very difficult task that I require of you. There is a chance that Bifrons will return before anticipated, furthermore my spy has been given another task by Bifrons and will not be at the palace for quite some time, so there are no allies for where you go. To aid in this endeavor I was able to acquire and build two of these.
Drexella produces two amulets. These are good for a single use only. They produce an enlarged plane shift spell. The first which is red in color is keyed specifically to Bifrons Ice Palace. it will transport every creature in a 30 radius from the one who activates the amulet to a servants quarters within the palace. The second which is green in color is keyed specifically to the temple of Orcus that you all cleared out earlier this year. I have placed Maester there as a guardian.
You all have proven your measure in combat and have earned a measure of my respect and trust. I do not expect you to slay or imprison Bifrons, however if you encounter him and manage to slay or imprison him, I will grant your group three wishes in addition to your charms.
I also will make loan of this item. Drexella produces an Iron Flask. It is empty and has been enchanted not to work on me, a safe guard against ambitious apprentices that I learned long ago to incorporate into many of my more dangerous items. With this you may imprison one creature even as powerful as a Balor.
It should go without say that the longer you are in the palace; the more likely your quest is to fail.
Lastly – I have received several omens concerning the evil that hunts your group. I will tell you what I have seen out of goodwill:
- You will be betrayed by one you call your own
- A decision in anger will impede your quest
- A friend will arrive when least expected and that arrival will herald the doom of one you love
- That which was found will be found again
- Gratification of a desire well timed may save the world, ill timed will surely doom it.
The group then discusses what they will do and the omens that Drexella told them. After much deliberation and preparation, the party finally does the necessary things in order to depart to the layer of hell. The group is teleported into a servants quarters in Bifrons fortress. They find this room’s walls are covered in various faces, which ask the party for death, among other things. After skulking through a few of the halls, Ossobucco notices 3 devils down a hallway. The party plans what they are going to do about the demons, deciding to attack them and starts to make their way to do what was planned. However, the devils appear to notice the party and a battle ensues. After a slight battle, the party manages to defeat the devils with minimal injuries sustained. The party then continues on through the frozen halls.
After following a short hallway, the party encounters a doorway with a face on it that continually says, “You will die!” After trying several things, Rathan is able to get the door open, by putting a sword into its mouth. Inside the room, the party finds a 10 foot stone altar. While Ramona is holding Ossobucco up to inspect the top of the altar, two bone devils appear flying in the air and attack the two. After doing their attacks, the two bone devils wink out again and a battle ensues, ending with the bone devils disappearing. After caring for the party’s wounds, the party leaves the room and comes to another long hallway, with a Ice Devil appearing to guard a large door. Nearly all the party turns invisible and makes their way down the hallway towards it as Dracioletto Machiovella attempts to trap the creature in the Iron Flash Drexella provided to the party.
The Ice Devil resists the attempt to trap it in the flash and the party starts their attack. During the attack, Ossobucco , Durass Brawnanvil , and Kagan are separated from the rest of the group by an ice wall created by the Ice Devil. During the fight, Rathan was struck down and killed by the Ice Devil. Upon getting the door open during the fight, Dracioletto Machiovella enters the room and sees a flash of light, which Master Gilnaeus calls out “It’s a symbol of death!”. After several summoned creatures, Ramona included, help the party to deactivate the symbol of death. During the standoff in the chamber, the Ice Demon blocks the door with another ice wall, blocking Tervine outside of the room, as well. After turning the pilar into clay, Tervine was able to pull the stone from the pilar. Ossobucco tried to activate the amulet, but was not able to remember the exact wording required, however Dracioletto Machiovella was able to activate it, transporting the party, except for Durass Brawnanvil back to the temple of Orcus.