Leaving Oyaviggaton – Slack Time

We made a bit of progress outside of regulation play. Here’s a significant portion of the transcript.
DM: After the final two trolls burn and hiss into oblivion beneath Terredon’s fiery spell – the cavern grows quiet. An occasional scrabbling here or there recedes into foggy darkness, probably a surviving Kobold or two.
Several of you are badly injured – including and especially Terredon and Brokk. But all are standing – by the Gods – surprising after facing Arauthator in his lair – even if a lesser lair.
Here are some big questions:
Will you be able to escape the Island of Eternity?
Will Arauthator return before you can flee?
What will happen to the Ice Hunters of Oyaviggaton?
What about Maccath and the Arcane Brotherhood (They would make a great asset in the fight against Tiamat)
What about Marfulb – Ice Toad and lore master of the north?

What happened to the crew of the Frostskimmer?
Tan Meng: Well, I’ll start discussing the pros and cons of my Water Walk Spell versus Polymorph. I need to be able to cast “Send” in Human Form. If I am polymorphed, I cannot do that. I could become a sea mammal, swim down, out, around, and back to the “beach”, then transform back to human. Polymorph kind of implies that Terrendon would have to drop it, not me. Depending on the sea mammal, I would not be quite as smart as I am…
Or we could just get up to the chambers directly. Use fire and melt the passageways upward. I’m thinking that Maccath might help with that. Sounds logical to get her take and a motivation read on her. This is the smart move I think. Let’s see what others have to say.
DM:You get the impression that there is a zone of obscurity around The Island, not just inside or on top of, but for some radius around. Half a mile? A mile? The exact distance is uncertain.
Tan Meng: Yes. Definitely. Understood. I think we should secure the area here and take terms with the villagers and Maccath, and any possible boat survivors. Maybe after a quick assess of looty loot loot here in the bottom caverns. Once on the surface, we could paddle some kayaks beyond this zone of silence.
Terredon: I doubt any of the “villagers” will want to venture with us for fear of his vengeance when he returns. At this point trying to convince Marfulb we are the best chance to save the repository is an idea, and trying to convince Maccath to come with us as well. I can heal myself up and possibly Brokk as well, but we also need to think about getting out while we can and how to go about doing that exactly.

—–

May 3rd

—–

DM: The first step will be the climb back up the ice-chute to the floor above – where Maccath dwells. Give me the word and your plan for approach (and allocation of healing) and you’re on your way.
Tan Meng: We have that rope that still is secured. I think a short rest is in order. At which time I get to dish out 80pts of channeled healing. Should be good. The ones that aren’t meditating are probably scrounging around and about. Just to get a fix on LOOT. If there is any (done here). How about we get a read on that?
DM: OK. Just to be clear – the party has at least a couple hundred points of cumulative breath weapon damage. :simple_smile: I’ll get back to you on loots soon.
Tan Meng: It seems we have cleared out just about all of the potential harm. Except for potential environmental damage. I know I exhausted a lot of spells in combat. But I gain 80 channeling back every short rest. That’s without Druid healing. As long as this is text narrative and not sheet dynamics, I’m ok with it. As soon as we get to a safer point, maybe upstairs, we’ll do a long rest and get some proper healing. Making party members use all of their fighter points, etc.
DM: After a short rest and some examination of the treasure (can someone cast detect magic?) It becomes clear that it would take quite a long time to even begin to excavate (thaw) the majority of the treasure. At least an entire day to get a significant portion. There are several thousand coins of varying denominations, as well as bits and bobs of finely crafted and lesser crafted items – all smeared and layered in deep centuries worn ice and lair debris. (if someone can detect magic, I can get into specific items easily.) Otherwise, within that short rest, it is pretty easy to recover 2900 copper, 1800 silver, 1200 gold, and 150 platinum pieces. (no electrum) along with a finely crafted bardiche and a matched pair of long swords with gold and bejeweled scabbards, as well as a chest containing an ornate set of silver and gold service.
Varieties of jewelry and precious and semi-precious stones. Many other objects, fine and ordinary, but all heavily depreciated by the wear of the beast.
Tan Meng: (I can cast detect magic as a ritual, 10 minutes)
Tan Meng:Alright. We do that. (Get the grabables). And then with detect magic, we might get some directed digging in. Perhaps you can provide any interesting descriptions of notable magic items within reach. If it takes more than an hour of digging, we’ll just note the location. After that its upwards back to see the Tiefling and Librarians.
DM: Some (now empty) potions of healing. A Philter of Love in a red crystal flask. A Potion of Giant Strength in an iron flask. An ornate wood and metal case 2′ X 4′ associated with a large copper and brass bound magic mirror, which was carefully hung on the wall. The bardiche is also magical.  The magic items were actually well taken care of and not buried in the ice. Easy to locate and retrieve. With that – you all ascend the rope easily back to the level of Maccath. She is surprised to see you all alive (if somewhat worn and tattered). Yes, she agrees to flee with all of you as soon as possible and to take what books belong to the Arcane Brotherhood with you all. There are clearly two obvious exits – melting to the surface, or fleeing downward beneath the Island and into the icy (dark) sea.
Tan Meng: It would pay to ask her, her own assessment of her burnin’atin capabilities to get through the ice. Also, we must speak to the Frogs and deal with books. Or are the Arcane Brotherhood Books all belong to Maccath?
Tan Meng: Or… We can let the arcane brotherhood come in here and deal with the Frogs… We can give our recommendation to the council that these sage historians should be left to their business, but they have some dangerous books. We need to make allies of the Arcane brotherhood it seems.
DM: All of the books effectively belong to Maccath – Marfulb has no interest in the volumes. There are some wizard tomes as well as the books containing “dark knowledge” … all of these would make nice returns/offerings to The Arcane Brotherhood in service of siding with you and the Council of Waterdeep against the Dragon Cult. She can do some burning, certainly, but you guys would probably be best at this. Particularly Terredon and Raynard.
Tan Meng: Well OK then. Let’s start melting upwards. I Think I Remember that the Frogs had mostly historical documents… I think telling them that there might be more visitors in the future would be at  least polite. They may wish to leave. And safeguard their writings. Or they are welcome to stay and we’ll vouch for them to the Council.
I’d like to get a read on Maccath though. She did aid us with information and arrows and a ring. Thanks for that Maccath btw.

—–

May 14th

—–

Terredon: So the priorities I see are taking magic items, spell books, important documents, clues, and Maccath and running away as quickly as possible. So finding any still living boat crew, and also any villagers that want to leave. How are the frogs?
—–
May 15th

—–

DM: Once you melt your way to the surface through many feet of ice, you emerge into the dark of northern night. Winds whip snow and ice. Around you lies the ruins of Oyaviggaton. Nearby, bits of hide flap in the wind from the whale bones that supported the walls of Kug’ruk’s home. In the distance, a few semi-intact structures lie  heavily drifted. … After some investigation, you discover that many of the Ice Hunters survive and now huddle in the remains of their crushed and broken homes. The survivors struggle to rebuild. The dragon spared quite a few, but more than a dozen died. Among the dead, Kug’ruk, Orcaheart, and their chief, Barking Seal.
Terredon: We give a rousing speech of this being the time for action! A chance to escape the oppression and evil that has held them captive for so long, a return to being proud and free, to pursue their own fate and course, join us in the exodus and find glory, or remain and be killed or face a life of servitude.
Also looking for any of the crew of the boat, and gathering food for the journey. Loading the treasure and magic and making haste with our exit, rallying by example of action in hopes of galvanizing their spirits.
DM: The rousing speech goes over well. An older man, missing one hand and one eye, named Oyakuk, agrees with your assessment. The dead are gone. But all now have a chance to be free. As soon as this storm has passed, they will take their kayaks and umiaks and make a run for it.  
Maccath suggests getting free of the area of influence of the Dragon and trying a Sending to one of the Arcane Brotherhood – Brother Micram perhaps? (You remember the good brother Micram as the one who greeted you all when you first ported to the Host Tower of the Arcane Brotherhood. He’s a large bulky man, pallid of complexion, smooth of voice.
A couple of you journey down the narrow icy ravine to see what remains of the Frostskimmer and crew. Timbers and debris float in the wake of the great ice berg where the Frostskimmer used to be. There are also bodies and parts of bodies. Some of the timbers and a few bodies are scorched as well as frozen. Arauthator’s wrath was considerable.

Terredon: I agree getting out of here and sending a message is the best current plan. Using our newfound friendship I will ask for being able to borrow boats for our party. I can polymorph Maccath, or Tan Ming and carry them by flight quickly to an ice flow outside the area of influence to allow them to send a message while the rest of the party goes by boat. Or we can all stick together and paddle fast to escape the zone.
Terredon: Also I was thinking that I could transform into a whale and tow a fleet of boats swiftly far away.  We can gather ropes and make a harness and a bunch of leads.
Tan Meng: I vote for being polymorphed. A small mouse perhaps? That the bird/Terendon could carry me to an ice flow? Contacting Brother Micram sounds good. I’ll also send a message to Lady Haventree.
I need to consult with Terrendon on the items in the message. I think: We’ve driven the dragon away. Some treasure. Some info. Maccath. Refugees in tow. Any other details?
DM: Oyakuk says that with their diminished numbers, the Ice Hunters can spare a large umiak.
You all guess, and Maccath can confirm – a teleport type rescue at sea would be difficult. You all were about 7 days sail north of Luskan.
Terredon: What about transforming an iceberg? Burn some chambers into it, then I can tow it as a whale? Or I tow as much of the fleet as I can and we just book it.

—–

May 16th

—–

DM: The umiak will reasonably hold all of you and some of your freight. Probably hold 10 people and some goods.  So, the ice-berg strategy might not be necessary? Let me know when/if you do the bird/mouse combination to fly some distance and do a sending. Let me also know what you say.
And to whom.
DM:  Just let me know regarding the sending – and to whom. Tan Meng will have to be polymorphed into something small, flown to an iceberg a few miles away, transform back, and then cast Sending. … Can Terredon cast Polymorph twice? To get back?
Tan Meng: Two sending spells: One to Lady Haventree, the other to Brother Micram:
Have driven Arauthator away from iceberg hold in the Sea of Ice. Maccath rescued. Treasure and Info Obtained. Refugees in tow. We need transport.
Terredon: Maybe add, in need of immediate assistance. :slightly_smiling_face:
DM: 25 word limit.
Lady Haventree: Congratulations! Help is coming. Hope to find all well. Hope you have recovered the Draakhorn or information as to its whereabouts.
Brother Micram: Stay visible. Prepare for departure. Help coming.
Terredon: Should we return? Or wait for our companions to join us? Two less people in the Umiat means more for transport. :slightly_smiling_face:
Tan Meng: I do forget as a character, what we have learned about the Draakhorn. It’s not here anymore. It was used here. Some colored members of other cult sects where here. I don’t remember where it went. What else?
Also, depending on that, I will reply to each soon. I need to let them know I’ve sent to both, so that resources are not wasted and no one gets mad.
DM: That’s the big thing. It was here. Members of the cult, “wearers of the purple” showed up and made a deal with Arauthator and took it away.
Tan Meng: Right on then. OK, reply to Haventree in a minute…
To Haventree: I also sent to Micram in Luskan. Please coordinate. Draakhorn in possession of purple cult. Elsewhere. Unknown. On a flow 2 miles from others.
DM: One round later: You feel you are both telepathically linked with Brother Micram. “Help is on its way. I’m sending an assistant with a scroll which Maccath will be able to use. It will aid you in teleporting here. It should take a few hours to reach you. Do you have a few hours?”
Reminder to you both, this is at night, in a storm…windy, nasty…waves are white caps. Big bergs aren’t troubled much by the waves and you found a sheltered spot on one of the larger icebergs.

Tan Meng: I reply, “Safe at the moment. Ready to meet assistant. Have spoken with Lady Haventree also.”
DM: Brother Micram begins to ask many questions. How’s Maccath? The Dragon? The books and spells of The Arcane Brotherhood? How are Captain Lerustah and the crew of the Frostskimmer? Did you find anyone else of interest?
Tan Meng: Maccath is well. Much of the Arcane Brotherhood Library is intact. The Frostskimmer is lost and all of her crew (I believe there are no survivors). The dragon killed it while we  explored underneath. Native village also raized. Met with Marfulb the Arctic Frog/Humaoid leader of the librarian/researchers. Most servants of Arauthator are slain. (maybe a handful of kobolds remain…) The drago has fled, but who knows to where, and how long? Clearly enraged, but calculating. Probably went to its main lair.
DM: Maccath responds. We are grateful and glad to hear that Maccath is well and library is intact. Sorrowful news about Lerustah and the crew of the Frostskimmer. Arauthator is a mighty foe. Marfulb is intriguing. … Lady Haventree sends word that a ship, The Mithalquacir, patrols just south of the ice, awaiting signs of your success….
Tan Meng: I would fear for the crew of the Mithalquacir, if Arauthator knows we are trying for it. Unless it has a battalion of fire wizards. And plenty of magical defense. I wish we had killed Arauthator, but he wisely fled. We are also honor bound to make restitution to the families of the Frostskimmer.
Terredon: It might be more effective for me to start ferrying people to our new ice flow to wait extraction at a point where communication and teleportation are possible.
DM:. Up to you guys. Let me know what you plan. You are also in communication with Br. Micram. He clarifies that a scroll will be delivered. From there… you may have to get away from Oyaviggaton to where you are now before it can be cast.
Tan Meng: that’s a good option. IT becomes a matter of travel time and numbers. ie math. Also, the bulk of the treasure, and books, will be difficult. I have an idea.
DM: Brother Micram agrees that is a good idea. But the weather is particularly nasty at the moment.
The Ice Hunters aren’t going out. … Especially not in boats.
Tan Meng: If still in contact with Micram I let him know that the use of some bag of holding, would work really well here, for transport
DM: Sorry. A scroll is on its way. That is all.
Tan Meng: I let him know of the weather conditions, and at least have the associate dress very warmly.
DM: Micram says, “by my estimation, the scroll should arrive in about 3 hours.”
Terredon, start ferrying? Or wait a bit?
Terredon: I think ferrying is the best option, all of us together away from that place is safest. It is a short distance by air, I start moving people. As far as carrying goods, a couple of options, one is people load me up, I transform, all of that comes along, or, I can also polymorph someone that is loaded up and they can be the mule, and if I polymorph them into a flying creature as well they can be carrying someone as well, and I can polymorph someone into a very large creature (CR8) which should be able to carry multiple people and poundage, possibly the entire party in one trip.
DM: Ok. Awesome. Sounds like there is ample capacity to get all of you out to the iceberg in a timely fashion. Do you want to leave any coins or treasures for the ice hunters?
Terredon: I think some coins and gems would be good for them, and well earned with the servitude and wrath they faced.
All the magic items would come with us, and unusual and valuable items/treasure, but some gold and silver and items of value to help them establish a new life would be donated. Is their a new chief? Or should that be distributed to each individually?
Tan Meng: I can promise them refuge at any Temple of Chauntea with my name as a reference. I’ll script a note to that effect Along with some amount of coin, that should allow them comfortable stay in any major town on the Sword Coast. Certainly at Luskan.
Our names carry the weight of the council as well.
What are the ice hunters’ plans?
DM: Finally, you all are gathered atop some slowly heaving great ice berg. The wind continues to howl driving ice and snow. Maccath has asked for her ring back – her ring of protection. You work your spells and gather your cloaks closer. After what seems like too long, the wind suddenly stops. You can hear it howling all around you but right in the little leeward shelter where you’re gathered, there is calm. In that calm hovers a bright, white bone scroll tube. Maccath retrieves it. There is a few moment’s pause. All is stillness. Maccath opens the tube and shakes out a roll of fine parchment. She reads and marks a large circle – and says to step in.  In seconds, all are transported far away – to the Host Tower of the Arcane in Luskan. You stand in the same courtyard where you stood now 11 days ago. The weather is warmer, just above freezing. A gentle snow is falling in the growing light of dawn. … Brother Micram is there. “Welcome!” … “Come, we have food and drink…you have much to tell and we have much to learn.”
Tan Meng: Sending: King BrawnAnvil, We are back in Luskan. Without the dragon hide, but only because the wyrm fled. It is a deadly foe. Will keep informed.
To Haventree: Lady Haventree, We are safely back in Luskan. Will a council member hear our news? The Arcane Brotherhood is eagerly awaiting our tale.
DM: Lady Haventree: Come to Neverwinter and speak to the council. We are eager for your news and here have been some changes. Seek alliance with Arcane Brotherhood.

—–

May 18th

—–

DM: The eight of you stand in the courtyard of the Host Tower. The contrast between your frosted faces and blood covered, tattered clothing and the clean starched robes of Brother Micram is remarkable and somewhat jarring. Soon you shed your cold-weather gear and after washing up in porcelain basins of clean warm water, you gather in a comfortable room with a great fire burning. Soon, a very ordinary, middle-aged man with dark eyes, a sturdy build and rough, inexpensive clothes enters the room and Br. Micram grows noticeably deferential.  “Ladies & Gentlemen… Adventurers…. This is Overwizard Blaskar Lauthorn…” Two attendants wearing fine robes of dark blue, a pale man with thinning gray hair and a female moon elf with fine features and long white hair follow and bring wine, brandy, and breads and cured meats. “Welcome,” says Blaskar. “How’d it go?”
Tan Meng: Overwizard Blaskar. Our mission was only partially successful. Gratefully we were able to locate Oyaviggaton and delve into the dragon lair. As you can see, we met Maccath, and she is in good form. We have retrieved several tomes which I believe your brotherhood has a large interest in. But we were not successful in other crucial areas. There was a tremendous loss of life, both of sailors and ice hunters. We were unable to end the reign of Arauthator.
We were able to retrieve information of interest to the Council of Neverwinter regarding the Draakhorn, involvement of cult factions, greater plans of the Dragon Cult.
One of the things we learned is that Arauthator, in his cautious plotting, actually keeps other dragons, especially potential rivals, at bay, sometimes by killing them himself. It may be that by not killing the old white wyrm, we’ve maintained some stability, however dangerous and cruel that is to those directly in Arauthator’s path. While run off, and injured, he is not defeated, will be a future danger and force to be reckoned with.
You may know that our actions have the blessing of the Neverwinter Council. We also seek information about cultist activity and try to gather respected allies where we may. What news does the brotherhood have? And what role do you see the brotherhood in defeating the cult.
And of course, let me shame myself for not thanking Micram and the brotherhood for the expeditious transport from the Sea of Ice first off!
DM: “It is our pleasure to assist in your efforts, and we thank you for returning these important and much valued volumes as well as for the safe return of Maccath here. We are greatly indebted and very appreciative. We will have much to discuss…. But to the matter at hand, the “cultists” as you call them, do not concern us much. The doings and affairs of dragons and their loyal followers are something that we keep an eye on, but we do not see a roll for ourselves in actively opposing this “cult” as you say. … But tell me more of this race of ancient ice toads and their records, especially this one called Marfulb?”
Tan Meng: I’d like a read on sincerity and intent here. I will purposefully pause and spend enough time looking at each of the wizards, including Maccath. I get a +8 bonus on insight. Not trying to be sneaky, I want them to know I am pondering my answer. I roll a
slackbot [1:49 PM] you rolled an 11
Tan Meng: 19 bitch. I know their souls. Please explain what I perceive.
Terredon: I am rather alarmed at their complacency in regards to the cult and also internally questioning their motives and possible reasons for that.
DM: It seems clear that Overwizard Blaskar is in charge or at least significantly outranks Maccath and Micram… and is perhaps someone to be feared by these lesser members of the Arcane Brotherhood. It also seems clear that he is focused on The Arcane Brothehood’s interests and not particularly on the interests of others. … You all know that the Arcane Brotherhood are an organization that has some dark moments in their past, if not their present. More than one ancient wizard has outlived the life of their mortal body and become some sort of lich-lord – and potentially maintained ties to the Brotherhood… They are largely a self-serving organization… with questionable ties. You remember that Onthar Frume was against association or relations with these “types”…  However, they are very powerful… And one of their great enemies is the Red Wizards of Thay…of which you’ve met a few.
Also, the higher level leadership of the Brotherhood is unknown – even more than the Zhentarim.
They are shrouded in mystery.
Terredon: I understand that our goals may not always align, yet I am hopeful we may all profit by our involvement and ongoing cooperation. It does seem, that at times such as these our motivations may remain divergent, yet we are brought into concordance  by the movement and workings of an organization involved in many areas. This cult you may dismiss, yet they have been instrumental in the theft of many powerful items of yours, as well as imprisonment of one of your own.
Tan Meng: Tan Meng will diplomatically try to bolster Terrendon’s argument that even crudely looking at the big cities’ ability to conduct commerce, grow food, and arrange for portal travel, could affect everyone, including the brotherhood. A balance must be obtaied, and the cult has disrupted it. With plans of bringing Tiamat to this plane, cities would burn, libraries would be plundered, and payments would cease.
Tan Meng: I add, that is merely the crude level. We know the Brotherhood’s vision extends way beyond singular incidents though. We have uncovered direct evidence of the involvement of the Red Wizards of Thay in alignment with the cult. We can get you access to the diaries and organizational plans of two such wizards traveling with Glazhael and the cult aboard Blathogokus’ cloud fortress. They fled, but we have the docs. These docs are now in possession of the Council. Perhaps you would be interested in sending a representative to learn of their exact contents? We would be willing to speak to the Council on your behalf, but ask you to take this new information into consideration…And re-think your outlook on the cult and the threat it poses.
DM: Blaskar says, “…yes, our goals may not always align. … The cult is not so much our concern…but this upstart faction of the Red Wizards of Thay – of course we are aware of their activities. We did not know you were also aware of them… we would be interested in an alliance against them. Especially if we were granted access to their resources, their belongings, their spell books and documents. We would be able to offer some assistance in return for such access… Again, we are already indebted to you all for your assistance and service – but to the Council – with them, we might form this alliance of which we now speak. Aid in return for access to information, documents, items…magic items.
Tan Meng: It is natural that there are diverse interests. But we are talking! Which is good. All eight of us have personal reasons for pursuing the cult and to this task we are committed. Perhaps you or another from the Brotherhood would return to Neverwinter for a council meeting. After we dine, of course, and share more information. I suggest we raise a glass to Maccath and celebrate her return! The end of prison, the beginning of freedom.
Terredon: I believe the Council will have interest in your willingness to investigate an alliance based on a mutual concern. We are happy to help in this endeavor and the potential for beneficial cooperation.
DM: “It is settled then. Brother Micram will join you at Waterdeep* for a meeting with The Council.” At this, Micram looks noticeably uncomfortable. “But first – we dine and you will tell more of your discoveries…” A long dinner ensues.
Blaskar and Micram are very interested in your stories from the north, and your experiences with Arauthator. They nod knowingly to themselves with the description of each magical effect… They are especially interested in the stories of Marfulb and kin – and tomorrow an expedition of Arcane Brotherhood will be dispatched to speak with them and record their knowledge…
*Waterdeep is the actual location of the council and not Neverwinter.
Tan Meng: “I wonder what more magic lies in Arauthator’s real lair. What wonders lie there. We’ve proven that he’s beatable. What do you think would happen to the region without the dragon’s presence?”
DM: Blaskar smiles amusedly at this question…. “Yes, we wonder what else may lie in Arauthator’s lair as well.” He seems disingenuous on this point. Arauthator is many times more dangerous in his own lair than where you found him – it is centuries older and has many more layers of designed deception and traps. The old paranoid wyrm – that would be a difficult task indeed – to take him in his lair.
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