Scales of War
The Shadow Rift of Umbraforge
Shortly after their daring defense of Overlook, the party began looking into the conspiracy with Modra, Bram Ironfell and the Elsir Consortium. They inspected the brass key they found in the Vents and determined it was a key to open a portal to the Shadowfell. While investigating the key, the heroes learned that someone in the underworld wanted them dead! The party set a trap for their assailants and ambushed a murderous gang of The Lost Ones. Quickly and brutally defending themselves, the party defeated the gang and captured one of the thugs. They learned that Modra had hired the Lost Ones to kill the group and recover the brass key. Thinking that Modra required the key to escape the city, Madmartigan’s Men (and Ithyk) realized he was still in the city. The party sought out Ulysses Conrad, who was eager to move on the Elsir Consortium, but required more proof before they could. He suggested that finding Modra or Sarshan, or any additional information would work fine.
Determined to uncover proof, the party began searching for the two arms dealers, but found that Sarshan had apparently vanished, but without the key Modra was certainly still at large. Investigation uncovered Modra was reported to be hanging around a poor house called The Happy Beggar. The party went to the Beggar and found that the owners knew nothing of Modra, but claimed the place was haunted. Kage the Black used his familiar Dio to scout the tavern. Madmartigan spoke to a suspicious old veteran who spoke of Modra and encouraged them to kill him as soon as possible. The veteran left, and Thanoril followed him. Thanoril’s search uncovered that the veteran was far from what he appeared to be, and the man disappeared into a shadowfell portal located in nearby warehouse. The party went to find out more about this portal, but Kage decided to stay behind and search the basement with Dio. The party inspected the portal that the veteran went through, determining that it used a similar brass key to their own to open, however their key would not work on it. While this was happening, Kage foolishly went into an underground cavern alone and was almost eaten by shadow bats. The party came just in time, saved Kage and defeated the bats. They realized that the cavern was massive and likely the place where Modra was hiding.
The party continued in the cavern and found a large passageway containing a large teleportation portal. The portal was guarded by a shardar-kai witch and a group of dark creepers, dragging a large cart with shadow hounds towards the portal. They immediately attacked the party when Thanoril turned the corner, but the heroes were able to defeat them. They discovered that the witch had a second brass key to activate a shadowfell portal. They continued into the next room and found Modra trying to activate a shadowfell portal out of Overlook. The fiend summoned terrible wraiths to defend him while he activated the portal. The heroes bested the ghosts and Madmartigan grabbed Modra before he could escape. While Modra slashed Madmartigan viciously, the hero tossed Modra into a pit where he met a bloody oblivion. Having defeated Modra, but destroying his body and evidence, the party began investigating the portal. Suddenly, there was a terrible tremor, and half of the group were sucked into the portal by magical forces! Having no choice, the remaining heroes followed their friends into the Shadowfell.
The party followed an old road where they discovered a large military encampment known as Umbraforge. There, the adventurers found thousands of mercenaries, making several small armies of sell swords, getting ready to deploy across the planes for coin. It was discovered that Sarshan was the mastermind behind this mercenary nation and, had been looking to cover up the embarrassment caused by Modra’s pairing with Tusk. The party decided that they needed to damage Sarshan’s operation for the good of the world and entered into the dark foundry. Once inside, the party faced the remains of Modra’s retainers and Sarshan’s biomagical monsters. After defeating the monsters, the heroes found a secret passageway into the Tower of Sarshan!
Together Madmartigan’s Men fought their way through the Tower Guards, facing many shadar-kai warriors. They found many riches and magical designs in the strange tower and, in the highest level, they found an onyx key that could take them back to the real world through a stone portal in the Tower. As they journeyed back down, they were surrounded by Sarashan’s men in the courtyard. The arms dealer greeted them kindly and thanked them for killing Modra, revealing that he was the sickly old man in the Happy Beggar. Sarashan offered to forgive the party’s killing of his men in exchange for their removing Modra and offered a place in his plans, hinting that he would move against the material plane soon. Madmartigan agreed to Sarashan’s terms, in order to buy the party time to escape. Sarashan saw through the ruse and left the courtyard, leaving the party to face his lieutenant Thunnel and a host of warriors!
The party fought valiantly and defeated Thunnel and his shadow beasts, escaping the Umbraforge base and returning to the material plane. Once there they presented all of their findings to Ulysses Conrad. Conrad was able to secure an arrest warrant for Bram Ironfell and charged the party to recover him. Madmartigan’s Men confronted the dwarf merchant. Bram revealed his undead servants and attacked the party with his body guard. The heroes were able to make short work of Bram and captured him alive. He was brought to the Elder Council to await trial for conspiracy against Overlook. Conrad discussed with the party that they would need to gather additional evidence against Bram and the Elsir Consortium.