Rise of the Planar Trade Consortium

Run 77 Rise of the PTC: To Seize the Cage!, Pt. III "Die Orcus. DIE!"

Our Heroes, Sioned, Giilos, Rook, and Camillas, discuss current events with Glasya and Fierna. The discussion breaks down fairly evenly along two sides. Fierna wants to press the enemy aggressively, if the party of heroes can slay Orcus aspect the fight will be more evenly matched. Glasya wishes to consolidate territory and regroup with Grazzt’s survivors, if there are any. The group twists; Rook has no opinion, but Sioned, Giilos, and Camillas all waver from one side to the other.

It becomes apparent that both Glasya and Fierna have a plan, but are reticent to speak it, much less commit to it, as it has low odds of them surviving it. But if they both fall back towards Grazzt, and then aggressively press an attack on Orcus with their forces they may regroup with successfully and also distract Orcus’s forces. If they can be distracted there’s good odds that Giilos and the other three might be able to penetrate Orcus’s stronghold and attack his very aspect. (unspoken by the group is that this may also allow them to close the gate to the Abyss that is feeding Orcus’s army reinforcements)

There is much debate, but in the end Giilos (lies) asserts that he has authority, as he has the hellfire and is strong. Fierna and Glasya both accept his speech inspiring them to sacrifice their forces, and possibly themselves, for the greater good and for their allies. It is becoming very obvious by now that this close to “The Fall” the devils are still just angels of a god of Good, Order, and War, that have been cursed with fiendish forms, they have yet to be corrupted by the power of the Seed of Evil.

As Camillas holes up with Sioned to begin some magical preparations “the Girls” head towards Grazzt’s last known position with their forces. A combination of powerful magic, mixed with some good old-fashioned stealth and perception, allows the group to out-run anything they can’t avoid. Soon they come up against the gates of a fortified position, a great “wall” of rubble and fallen walls behind which they know the gate to the Abyss resides. Guarding it is a huge undead monstrosity the aspect of Orcus has raised up in his defense. The Bone Collector proves a cunning foe, retreating away from open positions to defend it’s gate from behind, but not even that saves it.

Searching quickly Rook finds the group a hidden place in a ruined attic to take a few minutes and rest up. Below they can hear, and occasionally see, masses of Abyssal ghouls, hungry and corrupted by Orcus’s power. With some magics to aid them, some stealth and some flat-out-running alongside a few quick and bloody skirmishes gets the group past a massive amount of ghouls and deep into a sub-Sigilan lair.

There they find a Deathpriest Heirophant, and the Aspect of Orcus which he has called to the Cage. (since it’s unguarded at the moment) A number of ghouls are also present. Camillas opens by cutting the battlefield down to size with a wall of ice. Orcus strides forward and engages, the heirophant maneuvers to get close to the party where his necromantic aura can weaken their defenses. Most of the ghouls die quickly, but the heirophant utters a blasphemous word, the Word of Orcus, and stuns a number of people for a time. Much use is got of pushing enemies into the gate to the Abyss, which might be one-way-in but still has a nasty damaging effect. Even after the ghouls and the heirophant are slain the battle runs for a long time (much longer than we play out). Orcus is a damn tough customer, but with Sioned’s magic, supplemented by her forge-mail’s enchantments, the outcome is in no doubt; Orcus simply can’t hit hard enough to overcome her healing magic.

Once Orcus is slain Sioned gets down to the business of examining the gate to the Abyss. She connects to it in the same way she connected to the one that used to house the Bone Gate, through the pain inside her. Using that pain she cuts away the power that sustains the gate, closing it, for now. Before she can finish the job there is an unexpected consequence, from the depths of the Abyss something climbs upwards, riding her power across the portal. Razorvine erupts from the gate before being cut-off and withering as it closes. Razorvine also climbs up from ground beneath Sioned’s feet and winds it’s way up her legs and torso, enveloping and cutting her ever so briefly (and sharply) before it too withers and is brushed away.

Thus endeth the session.

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