Session Date: Friday 26 June 2015. Continued from previous session.
After dispatching the giants guarding the road to Xin-Shalast, the heroes followed the road until they entered a valley containing the most amazing sight they had ever seen: a city of massive proportions filled the valley, all the way up to the stern face of Ruenlord Karzoug looking down from the mountainside. Part of the city was destroyed by some volcanic activity, but most of the city was more-or-less intact.
To enter the city, the heroes had to get through an ancient black fortress that must have once acted as the gates to the city. While the gates themselves stood open, the fortress was not unguarded. Despite Ciaran’s attempts at diplomacy, the twitchy lamia-kin guards decided it would be better to slay the intruders than risk the wrath of their superiors. They started the fight by scaring their herd of aurochs into a stampede. Radha responded by trying to reroute the stampede. Unfortunately the panicking animals crashed into one another, causing a rather gruesome and pitiful pile-up in the midst of the battle with the guards.
Between the guards and the stampeding aurochs, the battle was a chaotic one, but the heroes eventually managed to finish off the guards. Most of the aurochs managed to escape, and the heroes were free to enter the city. Up close, it was clear that the city was not quite as magnificent as it had appeared from a distance. Many of the buildings were in poor repair, though many had held up rather well over the past 10,000 years.
A little way into the city, the party came upon some frost giants who appeared to be hunting something. Their wolves were frantically trying to get into an abandoned basement, but were too large to fit. The heroes offered their help, and found a terrified skulk – a humanoid creature with some camouflaging abilities – named Morgiv. In exchange for saving him from the giants, Morgiv offered the heroes refuge and as much information as he and his people could offer.
After a brief battle with the frost giants, the heroes followed Morgiv to the underground tunnels where his people lived. He told the heroes about the Hidden Beast, who had recently enslaved them, and the prophecy that claimed that they would be saved from their enslavement by heroes resembling the party. Upon close inspection of the ancient drawings, the heroes felt it quite likely that just about anyone would fit the description…