It takes very little time for Baphomet to arrive in Alderpash’s chambers. He brings with him three minotaurs filled with fiendishly mythic power. His superior speed allows him to cast both time stop to summon three balors and to attack bob and I with spells. Bob easily counters his attacks and we overcome the rest.
I do not easily admit that my heart held the tiniest bit of fear in facing a Demon Lord. I am sure we could have easily plane shifted away safely without facing him, but our desire to deal a most suffering blow to the war was too great. I pray to the goddess that we will see victory in this our most glorious challenge.
Jay kills a Balor in a flurry of bolts, and it explodes over the battlefield critically injuring Waxberry. If not for my Shielding effect she’d be dead now. Rui then stepped up and killed a Minotaur. Aureshalae peppered another with arrows. The Balor she hit then stepped forward and entangled her in his lash to continue hitting her with his flaming sword. My heart twists in a strange way at seeing her in mortal peril. Bob steps up and attempts to disintegrate the other two balors, and they save against.
I fly through the fray to unleash my holy fury upon Baphomet, only landing a critical blow once. I dealt 862 (1923) in one hit, the rest throughout the round. He survived the onslaught admirably. I would not expect the fall of a Demon Lord to be easy!
His follow-up is also admirable, though he only hit me 2-3 times. I fought off the worst of his attacks to keep myself up and protecting the party. Then the thing we feared would happen occurred – he cast Maze on me. Shunted into the extradimensional space, I had to find a way back out quickly so I could get back to the fight and protect the others.
Iomedae guide my steps so that I may continue to provide you glory. She indeed guided me out of the maze, though by the time I had returned, Jay had taken the lead in filling the demon lord full of so many bolts he could no longer stand against us. Praise the Inheritor!
With Baphomet’s defeat, Iomedae herself congratulates us on our achievement. The Hand of Iomedae has however lost his confidence and she needs someone to take his place until he regains his confidence, or the Crusades is completed once and for all. The weight of this responsibility is not to be taken lightly. If one of us were to take on this incredible honor, I am certain it would have further reaching effects than we could imagine at this time. None of the rest of our party, including Rui, seem confident in accepting. I am not confident, but I know I will try my best to be what the Inheritor needs for this Crusade.
We return to Drezen victorious, and send word to Queen Galifrey that we have dealt the Demon hordes yet another sturdy blow. It becomes quiet for awhile, the enemy is merely preparing for it’s next onslaught. Indeed after a time, the hordes of the Abyss come out to play. We are warned that a portal is attempting to be opened in Drezen’s basements, so we head down to keep them from invading us from within. The locust demons are no match for our combined power, and at the next opportunity we rush into the portal to take the fight to the Abyss. We find Aponavicius herself and several allies attempting to ruin a crusader’s day, so we decide to ruin hers instead. Among her flock is a great phoenix – whom I immediately recognize as Pyralisia. She was lost in the First Crusade, sacrificing herself to close a rift that threatened the completion of one of the Wardstones. It seems she didn’t die, but instead fell to the darkness and must be saved!
While my companions take out two iron golems, the locust demons and even Apona herself, I channel the might of Iomedae to bring Pyralisia to unconsciousness so that we may redeem her properly. We are successful. My hope is that the horrors brought upon her are not too scarring for her to continue to aid our efforts within the Worldwound. We have lost too many to the evil of this place. It hurts my heart to think of all the good and courageous souls who sacrificed themselves only to be corrupted to the evil they once so bravely fought. If only it were so easy to bring these evil creatures to the light.