Scales of War
Grasp of the Mantled Citadel
Following the defeat of the new White Exarch of Tiamat, the heroes returned to the Manse Victorious for a well- earned rest. They had barely recovered from their battle and celebration when they were summoned to Sayre by Amaryia and Benjen. The party left the Manse through the teleportation circles Verne had created and arrived in the city.
Madmartigan’s Men and Ithyk were greeted by their old friends and told that a strange being had arrived in the city seeking their aid. This being was believed to be an angel of Ioun, but would not divulge any information to anyone save for the party. The heroes went to the citadel to meet the angel and learn of its quest.
Inside the grand library, the party met Rachaela, an angel of Ioun. The Angel identified itself as an “angel of secrets” and had learned of a terrible secret that threatened the entire world! Rachaela spoke of a terrible servant of Tiamat: the Black Exarch Mornujhar. Mornujhar was conspiring with the ancient lich master Irfelujhar and serving as a bodyguard for the creature. Rachaela told the tale of Irfelujhar to the party, explaining that Irfelujhar was once the greatest ritualist in the world and fiercely loyal to Vecna. Over a millennia ago, Tiamat seduced the lich away from Vecna. Irfelujhar escaped the world and created a domain in the Shadowfell called Vaerothim.
Rachaela had learned that in this dread realm, high in a gray tower, Irfelujhar was preparing a powerful ritual for Tiamat and Mornujhar was protecting the lich until it was complete. Rachaela bade the party to journey to Vaerothim and destroy the lich, and learn whatever dark ritual was being performed. The party agreed and journeyed to the Shadowfell through a magical portal.
The heroes arrived in Vaerothim and found it to be a dark forest of dead trees underneath a gray sky. In the distance, they saw a frightfully tall tower: the Mantled Citadel. Verne and Kage noted that there were wisps of powerful magic flickering through the land; the likely residue of a powerful ritual. Before they could even begin their journey to the tower, the party was attacked by an undead treant and armored wights. After destroying these creatures, the party began to make their way through the dead forest. The party had a quicker time through the forest due to information from Kage’s devil parton and Magmartigan’s past trysts.
They came to a black stream in the forest and saw two menacing figures on the far side: a skeletal wizard and a hulking undead brute. The wight sorcerer offered to parley with the party, citing that they sought the same goal: death to Irfelujhar. The wight identified itself as a high priest of Vecna, who sought vengeance for his lord against the traitorous ritualist. Opening a dialogue between the two groups, the wight tried to gain information on the party and their goals. The heroes rejected all offers of power from Vecna and the wight mocked them when they mentioned Bahamut. Madmartigan intimidated the wight to reveal all it knew, and the creature confessed that Irfelujhar had created a ritual that could slay a god. Realizing that it had surrendered a great secret to the party, the creatures attacked with earnest. The party made quick work of the servants of Vecna and raced through the forest.
As they made their way out of the haunted forest, the party encountered an undead dryad. The creature had been corrupted by Irfelujhar’s move to the Shadowfell and she rose as a lich. Bound to her decaying tree, the fey creature had been driven quite mad. She spit threats at the party, while begging that they remove a piece of the tree to plant in the material plane. She believed that this act would heal her. The heroes showed the creature mercy, and took the sprig to plant once they returned home.
Madmartigan’s Men and Ithyk reached the Mantled Citadel and fought their way up the stairs of the grey tower. They fought several ghosts and undead treants before breaching outer doors of the fortress. Inside they were attacked by ghostly flameskulls and a vile chain golem. With these foes defeated, they continued into the fortress to face the Black Exarch of Tiamat and Irfelujhar.
As they reached the second floor of the tower, the party encountered a fell elven lich named Uthnis who was guarded the second level of the tower. The lich was surrounded by undead husks of lesser liches who had been drained of their magical power to fuel eldritch rituals. The dead wizards attacked the party and were soundly defeated.
Continuing to the next level of the tower, the heroes encountered a terrible sight: a throng of grimlock servants and a massive dragonblooded warrior torturing an angel of Bahamut. The dragonblooded identified himself as Mornujhar, the Black Exarch of Tiamat. The sadistic Exarch gloated about enjoying the pain he was inflict on the angel and ordered his minions to take party alive so they could meet a similar fate. As the battle began a massive beholder rose from a pit, but even this addition didn’t help the minions of the Dark Queen and the heroes slew them to the man.
They rescued the angel Agrturnyte, who explained that she had entered the Mantled Citadel to uncover what foul plan Tiamat was concocting. She had been captured by Mornujhar and had been tortured for several days. With the angel safe, the partyand continued to ascend the tower.
Over the next three floors within the tower, Madmartigan’s Men and Ithyk faced foul servants of the dark dragon god. They slew a score of ghostly minions and warriors, defeating a dread death knight and elemental beasts. Finally they reached the topmost floor of the Citadel and came face to face with Irfelujhar. The powerful lich mocked the party, explaining that the ritual had been completed and Bahamut was dead! Even though the lich was the most powerful creature that had yet encountered, the rage of the party knew no bounds and Bahamut was avenged.
The heroes left the gloomy realm of Irfelujhar, and returned to Sayre. They found the city, indeed the entire plane, in deep mourning. The lich had spoken the truth: the Platinum Dragon was indeed dead. They delivered Irfelujhar’s book to Rachaela, who explained that, according to her experience, when a god was truly destroyed the core concept of the deity’s portfolio would also be destroyed. As there was still hope in the world, likely there was still some shard of Bahamut remaining in the world.
The party now had a new task: uncover a way to bring Bahamut back from the dead and stop Tiamat’s plan!