Campaign of the Month: April 2011

Planejammer: The Spelljoined

Klattu Veratta Cenobites!
What's in the box?
(Vedis bowing out for health reasons)

Dinya’s Detect Chaos goes off more than ever as Deadite rears up and screams “I’ll swallow your soul!” Behind it is a cloud of flying skulls.

Lenats casts Consecrate. Finn casts Summon Spell Dampening. Initiative.

Kenari notices they’re coming towards us but not at us… more like they’re heading to another spot.

Dinya pulls out her Arc Pistol to Smite Chaos against the Deatite. – 35/16. Pierced belly and goo as it turns and all the flying skulls noticed us. 2nd shot drills it’s head as head explodes.

Eturiko perception – sees 4 human sized figures inside the cloud. She runs and jumps into the cloud to grapple the leader. She barely grapples and stabs him with sai and a critical hit – 16 and target at -2 to escape grapple and deprived of attack as arm is severed.

Lenata channels 44 positive energy and wipes out a 3rd of the cloud and a pair of zombie forms drops to the ground. Len casts Weapons Against Evil.

Mel perception – Sees a smaller swarm breaking off down the side of the hill. 35/40 ft down hill is a human figure in pain. Male in terror. Throws Polar Vortex on smaller skull cloud. 15 cold 22 bludgeoning.

Kenari pops over to get the man in danger and teleports him back to our group as he passes out. “Need a lift?”

Finn uses Wand of Haste on the group. Flying skulls bite at the edge of the consecrated space as it starts to rain. Ef Utan activates flight in his armor and casts Scorching Ray Critical – 22pts. Blows cluster of skulls into dust.

Dinya perception – shiver on back of neck but can’t pinpoint it. Lenata perception – blacklight hitting treakle as something desecrated the area.

Dinya Detects Chaos – Skulls approach, wrenching sense of chaos 20ft up 30ft out. Smite Chaos – misses then just misses.

Etsuriko hanging on creature just manages to continue grapple and stabs again for 18 as bottom half falls off.

Lenata – Protection From Evil Communal / Mel – Emotion Sense – senses madness from area Dinya shot at. Mind Thrust. Huge desecrated corpse with tattered robes appears carrying a large scythe.

Kenari shoots 3 times on the Grim Reaper. Finn moves to flank. The unconscious dude we rescued wakes up and starts fiddling with something as a strobe like blue light flickers and more deadites rise out of the water.
A vertical doorway of light opens up and a trio of hooked chains launch out and yank the deadite in. Whatever appeared did not activate Dinya’s Detect Chaos. Finn ducks out of the way of the chains. Cenobites?

Ef Utan – large spectre of death – attacks with large sword confirmed crit – 18/56 – 1 pt STR dmg. The silent scream becomes a piercing shriek .

Pinhead shows up and looks around, spots at dude and chains launch into his body and drags him towards the doorway. He then looks at us and the undead, raises a hand and two figures in the light/doorway halt.
It’s gaze stops on Dinya.

Grim Reaper swings at Ef Utan for 21pts /18pts / 17pts of dmg. Lenata makes it reroll. Still hits. Dinya smites with pistol – but misses. Etsuriko leaps to the Grim Reaper to grapple as he throws her off and she lands on her feet.

Lenata channels positive energy. 43pts. Blasts away 70% of it’s substance but the Grim Reaper is still going. Smaller skulls dissapate. Damages Pinhead too.

Melisande – Corrosive Atmosphere. 10pts. She notices it speeds up and rears back with it’s scythe and Vedis body falls into dust and are absorbed into the blade of the scythe as she stands between Kenari and Finn.
Knowledge Arcana – Drow weapon experiments? Ef recognizes the Soul Slash crit hit. Their soul becomes imprisoned inside the blade of the scythe.

Kenari scoops up the box and dimension doors behind Lenata so she can investigate the box.

Finn speaks to Pinhead in Infernal. We must destroy this #%# fiend. We’re here to kill the demon if you leave us alone. Deliver unto us the abominations and the one who fled and you may stay this time. I have no need for garbage like that when it comes to the scythe.

Ef Utan attacks Grim Reaper and destroys what’s left of it except for the scythe that clatters and Ef scoops it before it falls. He hands it to Dinya as she knows souls. Dinya looks at it like it’s slimy but accepts.

Mel picks up at the far range of her emotion sense some extreme panic going westwards. Lenata heals Ef Utan. Etsuriko abundent steps in that direction and a skinny Asian girl in late teens Blue Oyster Cult t-shirt covered
in mud, blood and bruises. Etsuriko – “You want this?” “She called us, so we must take her. We have sights to show her, you as well. Cleave to the bargain we made if you don’t want to see them.”

Finn – She made her bed she gets to lie in it.

Mel – reads the woman. Terrified, been through shit, subcurrent of guilt. “You’re guilty. What did you do?” Girl looks guilty/busted. All we did is play the audio file! She activated the Necronomicon, dude activated the Box.
Finn attempts to get girl talking and attempt to bring Cenobite along so he can shove the girl toward him. Do Cenobites want to get a hold of the Necronomicon?

Kenari attempts to reverse it when parts start moving on it’s own. Just miss slashing damage to hands from the box. It glows and goes back into a cube. The gate then expands as 4 figures are silhouetted now.

Etsuriko stabs the girl since she admitted her guilt and then throws the body to Pinhead. You did not specify alive or dead. And I did not specify anybody but Finn could walk away.

Chains leap out of the portal. Kenari notices a small rectangular device similar to Mel’s gadgets underneath the body of when the chick got stabbed. She scoops up the iPod / Necronomicon.
Mel attempts to renegotiate the deal as she offers the iPod instead of the girl. Finn analyzes the portal – similar to Baetor. He then scrambles the portal as it collapses in a burst of pink and plaid.

Lenata moves up on Pinhead and casts Dismissal as Pinhead is sent back to his dimension. Well now we have a Box and the Necronomicon. Now what?

Etsuriko - Journal Part 34
IRLG Game date 9.8.23

Dear Anya,

Out of the frying pan into the fire, into the volcano, into the hell realm – you get the gist.

We are staying at Tyrex’s mansion on this quarantined alternate. He’s not too shabby for an undead Illithid Lich. (yes, you read that right). He gave us a lengthy lecture on Illithid factions (he calls them Creeds) and, I have to say, it explained some things. We are taking this opportunity for some much needed rest (and baths). We also spent some time messing around with motor-cycles. They are these 2 wheeled machine bicycles that go really fast that Melisandre has. They are so much fun!! I have to get one of these.

Our exotic matter duplicated itself at some point during the crossing. It took out everything in Kenari’s pouch and she’s sad enough about it that she’s been wandering the house putting random spoons in her bag just to fill it up. I put my gold in her bag too and put the exotic matter in my pouch – maybe if we cross another dimension it will duplicate AGAIN and we could have more? With enough of it, we could maybe build that machine I told you about. We need a more reliable way to cross alternates on our own! I’m tired of being dragged willy-nilly across alternates.

Tyrex has been chatting with Finn and the others about his efforts to escape this quarantine. He shows us his lab and some crazy machinery that he built – your Uncle (whose abilities are improving daily) makes some suggestions and we agree to try to use the machine tomorrow morning to get out of here. TBH, I kept an eye on your Uncle and the others, but I pretty much tuned out the conversation. It was nice just to relax for a while and not worry about things trying to kill us. It helps that Tyrex is just as interested in escaping this reality as we are. And while normally I would not align with an Illithid – this one is rather different. And as we all know – the enemy of my enemy is…well not a friend maybe – but temporary ally works too. So tomorrow morning we are going to use this machine and hopefully be somewhere else. How much worse could it be?
Escape From Quarantine Earth
I Can't Believe It's Not Brains!

Lady Liberty – Woman Holding Torch

MIB and Tyrex in helicopter with crew as it takes off. Mel wakes up as she shakes off purple electricity. Finn continues to gesticulate silently. Mel stands, straightens her clothes, bows, and brushes her mind
against Tyrexes. Picks up on the alien thought processes – straight up Illithid, but feels scarred.

The reason brains are req for Illithids is a combo of base line nutrients and a consumption of psionic energy. This is why animals will not do. There are processes that I have developed that allow us to make synthetic foodstuffs with psionic residue to eat.

Much like your own species there are numerous factions. The Creeds. I was of the Creative Creed whose goal was research and new uses for psionic energy etc. Sadly my discovery took a very long time.

Mel/Lenata realize that the Illithid is not injured, he’s Undead (Illithid Lich). Among my people the Alhoun are outcasts. We continue our discoveries from beyond the grave. Separate from the Hive Mind. Illichid.
Tamers/Military Abysmals/Fear & Terror Influncers/Secrets

In a place effectively sealed off from the alternates for those who know what to look for it’s easy to see when something is coming. I must confess I didn’t expect anything as interesting as you “points at Finn” and you “points at Kenari.”
The Aboleths were here when the Illithid arrived. Just under a century now. Can we use one of the “Stamps” to communicate with a group outside to coordinate a dual effort to weaken a point in the quarantine field around the planet?

We land at a massive estate with private security. Sizeable meals buffet style. Tyrex excuses himself as he is fatigued. Let the staff know if you need anything. There are definitely a lot of cameras around.

Mel’s armband is fine, so Kenari checks her bag again. There’s a purple light again. I empty my bag and all that is left is a single grain of exotic matter with a second one right on the ground.

Mel has heard about this – rumor has it that one of the few places exotic matter has turned up is Edge Station. Impossible to synthesize and usually at the center of time travel experiments that causes them to disappear.
Something made that particle divide in a fission process that caused everything else to be destroyed. Everyone checks their bags now. Give Etsuriko the particles in her Pathfinder Pouch as I carry her money in my bag.

Mel pulls out her motorcycles from her bag. 5 Tron Bikes – see Starfinder book. Len takes to it easily. Ef hobbles on it slowly as he drops the bike. Kenari moves slowly but manages. Finn fumbles the bike and flies off
the back of it as the bike crashes into the underbrush. We practice for the afternoon as the guards are highly amused.

Kenari tours around the house as she checks out security and camera monitoring. She heads to kitchen and pushes random things into her bag as she walks around.

Dinner is served. Tyrex doesn’t show up until after dinner when the MIB bring in the brandy. I am as interested in leaving as you are as I have a bone to pick with several creeds of the Illithids. You two with your odd ability to control your baseline quantum signature might be the key I am looking for. In order to properly do so however are you willing to undergo some tests? Can you explain an MRI please, Melisande? Mel has the patient data files and is willing to share info with some limits. Ken – can we see your research? Finn -what’s in it for us if we can do this without you?

We are taken down to a lab with a lot of machinery and Illithid tech integrated with other tech. Looks similar to Edge Station to Mel. Finn – “probability travel” comes to mind through his circuitry. Mel – an advanced version of this is how I ended up with this group in the first place.
Finn – what do you need us for? He points at a chamber and says stand in that chamber for 5 minutes and let it read your quantum signiature. Finn – where is the device that punches through? Here or somewhere else? When active the arch between the two posts opens up a gate.
Finn agrees and steps into the chamber as he gets scanned.

Well I see why they put you here. You ARE an interesting group. I think we may have the proper key now. Finn analyzes it while it’s on – and uses Super Genius moment – under most circumstances this would work but there’s
some kind of interference going on from the multiverse similar to what we encountered earlier. He then directs Tyrek on how to improve his machine as he shows off.

Tyrek points to those of us who have the Spelljammer tattoo. The quantum history of you are quite interesting. In the meantime I think getting you back into play will make the Tamers too busy to deal with me. Interesting
how you all met in Ravenloft. It certainly fits the God Brain of Butspar. Undead brain of thousands of dead illithids – first of the Illithid Vampires. The Lord Elder Brain sought to remove you from the view of our species.
It’s easier for the undead Illithid factions to stay hidden if the Illithids aren’t running everything.

The next day we have a big breakfast and begin the Beta Testing. Finn can tell it’s barely getting through. Detecting another Prime Material on the other side. Statue of Liberty, seems the same as where we are now. Just slightly different as they don’t have the Twin Towers.

We go ahead of him. Thanks for not messing with me (despite Kenari’s great desire to because LICH and all). You are not among my enemies. He casts Plane Shift and he and his dudes disappear.

We are on the edge of the Jersey Pine Barrens at evening. As we stare out over the city a half dozen skeletal undead looking figures fly upout of the river. One with wings shrieking “I’ll swallow your soul!” as Dinya’s Detect Chaos goes off BIG TIME.

Lenata's Journal #36

Lenata’s Journal

Surprise, surprise the ship in the mountains was an Illithid trap. Rather nasty one too. I was wondering how we were going to make it back to the shuttle in one piece. I’m still wondering how we are going to retrieve the shuttle but for now, we appear to be safe.
Something has changed, in all of us. Made us more powerful, faster, stronger, smarter… The burst of purple lightning before we crashed through the space portal and to whatever version of Earth we are on now, catalyzed a shift. For me, while I have always, being a cleric, have had a connection to the divine, I am now an active conduit. I can cast spells with more power and will be able to overcome more spell resistance. I can cast some spells with no components. I can cast abundant healing which spreads throughout my entire party. And I can be sustained by my faith, requiring no food, water or even oxygen if I can meditate for an hour a day.
We had been doing what we set out to do; getting rid of the chronomancers since they were infected and could not be saved. Ultimately, the plan was to finish and destroy the ship with the shuttle from the air, We didn’t get the chance. In the last room was a Neolithid. Apparently, at some point the tadpole pools had been restocked but abandoned. They fed upon each other until only one was left, this is considered an abomination in Illithid culture (hence my assumption they had been abandoned). We defeated it, surprisingly quickly (that should have been a clue). Then the floor beneath it began to collapse into a star field that kept changing. Only a single constellation, Pleiades was a constant within them. Not wanting to risk losing my friends at random I cast reverse gravity so that we clung to the ceiling. The overbearing one-eyed, steel eyepatch Illithid couldn’t resist boasting about the trap they had laid for us.
That’s a big Fuck NO! I cast again; this time Planar Retreat, instantly a forest appears around us and a bubble of atmosphere, water runs from a stream and edible fruit and vegetables grow. As this pocket dimension appears, we disappear. The neolithid, reactivated remotely by other Illithids moves and Cor attacks. The Neolithid combusts into purple lightning and Cor is lost to the space portal.
The lightning penetrates our haven and into us. I don’t believe it had the intended effect. It didn’t kill or damage us, quite the opposite. Ultimately, we realized there was no going back to the shuttle, and we used the portal key to find an earth that it somehow recognized as significant, and more importantly what in Qualleth was labeled Quarantine, according to Fyn. We went through the portal and crashed onto this earth. We were met on the beach by humans that seemed to be expecting us. (?) Ever the pull of the Fates and Fortunes seem to direct our way. Perception checks told us while there was no magic except us and what we were carrying, there were powerful Psionics close by. Curious.
Fyn the mouthpiece zeroed in on the woman in charge bypassing the dozen suited monkeys running interference. Just as they were about to begin their parlay a beast emerged from the sea.

I knew what it was, an Aboleth. This explains the Quarantine and why people here would be psionic. Noticeably, the people were unfazed by its appearance. We defeated it with both magic and psionics though they didn’t expect us to. Then we boarded the helicopter of our new host and the employer of all the people we had been interacting with. A strange, scarred individual in a wheelchair named Mr. Tyrex. Mr. Tyrex of Tyrex Amalgamated in a world resembling the one from X-Crawl. He sat facing away from us at first, apologized as his countenance was disfigured and alarming. We assured him we had seen far worse in our travels. Eventually, he turned around and emerged into the light. We saw why he hesitated. Not only due to the horrible disfigurement but do to the fact he was an Illithid. We found the Illithid turncoat.

Kenari's Letter to Dassam

How do I even begin?

For someone who keeps being told by mystical beings that they are free from the strands of Fate, we sure do keep getting pushed around by it, don’t we? They must have had quite a laugh when we promised each other that we would never be separated again all those years ago. I would much rather be in your arms and our hammock as we discuss our plans for our new community of rescued slaves… but instead we’ve fallen victim to an Illithid trap that has thrown us who knows where this time. Oh, and the Illithid who did it? Steel eyepatch and snooty as all get-out. And boy did he monologue…use that to your advantage if you ever encounter him. Goodness knows I will.

When we went to that crashed ship in the Barrier Peaks there were definitely plenty of chronomancers in tubes that I hope we sent to a better place, but when we explored deeper into the ship there was a shift that I couldn’t put my finger on until it was too late; It’s like there was a point where we crossed from the ship in our reality to the ship in another reality. Could the ship be one of those weak points in the fabric of the multiverse? All I know is that after we defeated a rather grotesque Neolithid a trap was sprung… and we found ourselves not crashed in the mountains, but out in space over Oerth…Aerth…Earth? The reality kept changing as we fell through space, but apparently our view of the planet did not. That, and a peculiar set of stars that I did my best to sketch the position of for whomever might be able to find us. Lenata called it the Pleiades? I had hoped the Dimensional Key would at least provide a point of reference for any who might come to rescue us… but all it says (according to Finn) is “Quarantine” in the Illithid language. On the plus side, no Illithids; am I right? On the negative side… what would scare Illithids?

Well…Aboleths, apparently. Makes you wonder… I mean if the Illithids were not originally from this existence… and the Aboleths are supposedly from a time before creation… did they both originate from the same place? And if so… are they afraid of each other? Or are they competing for some other purpose?

But I digress… very big and nasty Aboleths aside, this Quarantine Earth seems a lot like the planet where we competed in that X-Crawl game I told you about. Advanced architecture and flying ships, and those “automobiles” that Melchior loves to talk about… and secret organizations to boot, who of course knew we were coming. These guys didn’t have dark robes… more like fancy suits and reflective goggles and guns. Do you think they’ll let me have another one for my collection?

Gods…that reminds me… I hope my collection is ok. Apparently opening a dimensional bag on the quarantined planet wasn’t a good idea. Does that mean the planet is in its own demiplane, maybe? That’s one big bag of holding, lol!

So after the fight with the Aboleth (did I forget to mention that? Eww. Seriously. Eww.) we had a conversation with a gentleman named Mr. Tyrek who runs some corporation front (Tyrek Amalgamated I think) and has a whole mess of issues. He didn’t want to show us his face at first, and I totally get why. If you ever thought about what would happen if the creation of an Illithid went wrong (and why would you ever think about that – yuck)… this guy probably fits the description. The part of his face that wasn’t tentacles was a scarred mess and he had to use a weird machine to speak… but the biggest surprise of all was when he said he discovered an alternative to Illithids eating brains.

I mean part of me wants to go “Yay!” but the other part is “OK, but is the alternative worse?”

I will continue writing in the hopes that we can read this together some day and laugh… and take some small comfort knowing that if those stars are a constant, perhaps you’re looking up at them now too.

Etsuriko - Journal Part 33
IRL Game Dates 4.7.23, 4.21.23, 5.523, 6.2.23, 6.16.23, 8.11.23 and 8.25.23

Dear Anya,

I can’t imagine how this is going to reach you this time, so I am just journaling. We’re safe. For the moment. In some other alternate with a rather interesting host (I’ll get there – just read on).

One day, I (or your Uncle Fenelyn) will just give you my journal. I miss you and I hope you are well and staying safe. Or, how about just being less reckless than the rest of us.

Oerth was a mistake. The Barrier Peaks was a trap and we should have known better. We should have DONE better. But we went. Melisandre’s ship had a smaller ship…a “shuttle” according to her that carried us all down to the planet. In a valley we find a snow covered metal wall and Kenari manages to find a door then get it open. Lenata covers us in various blessings and we head inside. Mistake the second.

Turns out Dinya has been here before and is able to give us quite a bit of description about what to expect. We head in and then down into a some kind of tube lift. This is a ship of some sort – or was – so Melisandre starts messing with the computer things and manages to get emergency power going. We go down one level and hit a balcony where Dinya says her group had fought Illithid before. Kenari thinks we’re being monitored and Melisandre notes that there are functioning cameras in the area. Fenelyn tells us that there is some kind of dimensional anchor on this space that is flickering somehow. We go check out a room that is filled with something called radiation.

We get there and get the door open. Fun fact: doors do not stop us. Pretty much ever. One of us is getting in. Somehow. But we get in. There’s stacks of crates, some kind of tube with a human floating in a liquid that has a…thing hugging his face. The crates are locked. They say “starship warden” and seem to be locked. Melisandre spends time on the computers trying to get anything to work. After a bit of conversation we manage to agree to leave the person in the tube with the thing on its face. Not everything is a problem we need to fix. Eventually Melisandre gets the door to a lift open and we head further in. As we are going down – something shifts. This is apparently where we shift realities. Mistake the third.

But we exit the lift thing and head into a hallway and another door. Fenelyn’s psionic circuitry is shining and in this space, it lets him open the door into a room full of tubes that are full of people – all kinds of people – all out cold. All infected. So we destroy the place… It doesn’t take much (by our standards). Your Uncle and I waltz through the chaos to the next door and your Uncle opens that one too. We head down another hall – then another door – and more people in tubes. This time, we’re attacked. An Illithid tries a mind blast but fails. We start fighting. Fenelyn starts searching around for items of value and manages to find three power stones.

Turns out we’re not really fighting Illithid – those were holograms (? I think like spirit projections – but tech somehow). What does appear is a 9’ tall brain golem. Because those are great. Kenari starts ripping up the wires to destroy the tubes. Fenelyn starts messing with the machinery (finds a striathor – an Illithid writing too) and everyone else throws what they can at the brain golem. Mostly to little effect. At first anyway. We get into a rhythm and start dealing it some serious damage. There are some silver tendrils whipping out at us from between the tanks and we realize that you don’t want to get touched by them as they will make you quite a bit dumber than you were before. I manage to cut the end off of one and they zip back between the tubes fast. Fenelyn and Kenari get another set of doors open while I yell at everyone “break this” pointing to a set of conduits leading from the tubes into the floor. Fenelyn is opening a series of doors, tossing in alchemist fire and closing them again while Kenari breaks the conduits I found. The liquid in the tubes starts boiling. Guessing that’s not great. Ef Utan and Lenata fly around and try to get the thing with the tendrils. Melisandre gets a door open to a room full of tech that reminds her of her ship – there’s no time to steal anything so she decides to break it. Kenari opens a door to a room full of shelves of jars with a light amber fluid. She takes 3 of them. Just in case. The last door leads to a room that has a brain floating in the middle of it. Fenelyn thinks it’s a computer. So Melisandre hits it with a mind thrust while I am counting heads to make sure we are all still together.

We end up taking all the jars of amber liquid and storing them in Melisandre’s dimensional space since Fenelyn thinks that it’s the source of their spell resistance. We finish destroying the tubes. All the people inside are chronomancers. Their collected energy is being sent towards a single point across planar boundaries – somewhere in the dreaming. Dinya says “Oh good. The dreaming. My favorite.” As sirens go off.

At this point, an Illithid monk appears next to me and attacks. And he’s good. Melisandre keeps working the computers and Dinya guards her – while I, Ef Utan and Lenata start in on the Illithid monk. The bastard manages to hit me a bunch of times and I strike back, but he’s hard to hit. Kenari manages to shoot him in the back. Ef Utan goes down from a mind blast and I get dropped to my back. We trade blows, all of us versus him and he’s holding his own annoyingly – though his grapple on me fails because I cannot ever be held by anything and he chooses to disappear when Dinya relieves him of an arm.

Melisandre has a break through on the computer thing and starts being able to read the Illithid project notes about enslaving the chronomancers. She finds some notes about alternate universes including which ones are under Illithid control or under Aboleth control. Melisandre discovers that these Illithids came from somewhere else and were all followers of “Thoon” before the computer starts to self-destruct. Fenelyn pipes up that the cultists of Thoon are a weird branch (even for Illithids) who were explorers and used something called a probability drive to get around. They had returned from an expedition to “the far realm” a weird – non-Euclidian kind of realm.

We’re discussing this while we investigate the last door in this space. Team work gets it open – with Kenari ably disrupting a trap. Then several more. The traps are wrapped around a box and are intended to keep whatever is in the box – IN the box. So we decide to open it. Lenata scrys and is able to see a dark-haired humanoid male inside. So we decide to open it. The guy falls out. He’s kind of thin, groggy. He’s a monk (according to Fenelyn). He says “thank you for releasing me.” And gulps down water like he’s been in there a while. Mel gets a green crystal pried off the side of the box. The guy tells us that his name is Kor. The Illithid imprisoned him in a box because he was the leader of a movement that fought the Illithid. We ask him where and he says “Earth” so we ask which one – which he finds rather confusing. Fenelyn says “Maybe he’s an American.” So I ask him if he is. He says he’s from the colonies. So we enthusiastically explain that we’re Americans too. Basically. Melisandre is still trying to get into the computers to get information out – but most of it is locked somewhere. I don’t really get computers to be honest. Books, but not books? Kor is talking about how he led the fight against the Illithid for many years till a final battle in some place called New Amsterdam. Melisandre is able to find his quantum signature in the computer with a note – Kor from the House of El – Enemy Number 1.

Kenari tries her best to bring Kor up to speed, but it’s a lot for him to take in. I’m still fuming about the Illithid monk slipping away – so Ef Utan gives me his dimensional shackles to use. Lenata casts some spells to try to find him, but no luck. Fenelyn leads us down a hallway following a bloody trail. We are stymied by a door that has a force field on the other side – when purple mist hits three separate spots in the hallway – it’s kind of a corridor nexus really – and large groups of thralls appear in each location. Melisandre casts her favorite polar vortex and uses it to block two of the groups – they’re thralls though so they try to come through – just get churned into soup doing so. Kor-El joins us fighting against the third group – he can fly. Literally. Ef Utan stumbles and knocks himself out with his giant sword. Dinya heals him yelling “I unstab you.” Kenari seems more thralls approaching from a different direction and throws tangle foot bags to hold them up. Fenelyn manages to disable the force field on the other side of the door and we all head in. It has a methane atmosphere but we all have life bubbles (courtesy of Melisandre) and so, in true gallows humor form, we all start referring to Melisandre as “Bubbles!”. Fenelyn gets in the room and is grappled by something he can’t see. Ef Utan and Melisandre attack it. Kenari swaps places with him then does her own escape trick swearing “What the fuck is in this room?” Lenata floods the room with light – it’s an Illithid. We all attack. Fenelyn talks to it saying “I brought snacks.” The Illithid munches some brains and hugs Fenelyn.

The mob continues attacking us as an Illithid Ulitharion joins the melee. Everyone splits between the mob of thralls and the Ulitharion. Ef Utan is temporarily enfeebled by an attack that Lenata manages to reverse. I run in with a full attack and hit him with a Quivering Palm that connects! He drops and we pivot because we can hear marching feet heading our way. More thralls. Fenelyn can feel someone/thing trying to get in past his dampening field. There’s a column with viscous fluid and swimming figures – the Commodore says “this needs breaking.” We move around the column and then we see the Neolithid. I’ve never seen one of these before. It looks like an Illithid tadpole but enlarged somehow. Melisandre drops a corrosive atmosphere spell in front of the thralls who just continue marching into it. The best rears up – Kor El is thrown back, but Ef Utan ducks. We start attacking. Melisandre drops a polar vortex on this thing. It gurgles a bit. Kenari (who’s been building a bomb) manages to chuck the thing into the beast’s mouth. We keep hitting on it and all at once it starts to decay – its body falling away into a starscape – that looks like our X-crawl Manhattan – almost. There is a blinding light and a wave of force rolls through – and I feel something shift inside myself.

The next bits get confusing. We’re trapped. The hole beneath the beast is widening. The star scape that we can see is shifting. We can’t get out of this room and the room itself is dropping away from us. There’s a portal that Fenelyn can sense and we try to go through – but as we’re doing so – he realizes that this is a trap. The whole thing. We’re stuck in a box of some kind. The neolithid is gone – if it ever was really there. Lenata tries planar refuse and we are safe for the moment, but still in a box. The face of an Illithid – older, with a weird metal eyepatch appears and starts monologue-ing. We’re pieces on a board and this whole thing was to get rid of us – blah blah blah. Let’s just see about that.

Kor El loses it and punches a whole in the box and winds up floating away from us. We head towards it (Bubbles!) holding onto Ef Utan who is flying through space while the rest of us are actually roped together. Which may rank as one of the crazier things I’ve done. Ever. We can make out land masses and head towards the one we know as New York. This time when we land – the big statute on the island is a woman with a torch in robes. We hit the beach. Kenari’s key now says something along the lines of “edict” “quarantine” or “exile” – but it says it in qualith. So that’s interesting. We’re milling about when a black machine thing that makes a lot of noise lands and a group of people in black clothing with black glasses head towards us. Fenelyn discerns who is actually in charge and heads right for her – with some help from Ef Utan. Kenari tries to stash her guns in her back – which does a weird poofy thing. I resolve to not open my pouch for the time being. The Commodore notes that there are psionics here and the most powerful one she can detect is in the helicopter.

There’s some back and forth. Kenari decides to entertain the crowd. An Aboleth arises from the ocean and we kill it. Quickly. We wind up in the helicopter to meet the Boss. His name is Mr. Tyerex. He’s in a wheelchair. And he’s an Illithid. Who invented an alternative to eating brains.

Well. The enemy of my enemy?

Interlude: Reality Aftershock


Reinvigoration protocols executed and successfully completed. Navigation coordinates successfully installed. Destination: Penumbra. Awaiting launch command, or alternate coordinates. Artificial attraction field initiated. Air generators online. Heating filaments energized. Lockdown on exists successful. Psychoportive propulsion initiated. Remaining travel time to Penumbra estimated at six sleep periods.




…is anyone receiving this? Repeat: This is the starship Primorata, we have been caught in a Drift event of some sort and our ship has fused with that of a pirate’s. We’ve been falling through realities due to a….malfunction…with our Drift Drive. Please, is anyone rec…..


Cmdr. Alanar Mirani’s Investigation Summary

INS Stormbreaker put to space five years ago in 2002 DR but is currently under quarantine at Lionheart Imperial Elven Navy HQ pending investigation.

The captain and crew claim to have spent a tenday in Realmspace engaging and destroying a Scro battle fleet (our allies, of all things!)… in the year 1374 DR. Gun camera footage from her Flitters do record an engagement between 2 mint condition Goblin Arrows (a very one-sided battle, the goblins had a bad day), and CIC data feeds do record engagements with unclassified hostiles. Still, the captain and crew’s claim is preposterous, and investigators are looking for evidence of psych weed in the ship’s hull or in the crew’s possession. Even Arindale, the elven spirit bound to the ship’s mythal, seems to be affected.


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Big Bad Ascension - Part 2
We're not in Kansas anymore...


Ken and Finn get the impression that we’ve skipped across a reality boundry as the above ship is on our plane and below the ship is in the sky. Lenata casts Reverse Gravity.

Bright lights and lens flares – another plane shift? Ef – plane of radiance? Len – Nothing on the Prime I know of. Ken – Not the positive energy plane. It’s bright but not glaring. Feels like a random gate? It goes through a couple of shifts. Seems to be a similar perspective as there’s always an overlap. The one constant constellation that’s always there. Ken sketches the placement of the constellation on a parchment. Something familiar but
can’t quite put a finger on it. Not the House 7 Stars banner. The Pleadies constellation. Sets Finn and Etsuriko’s teeth on edge. Finn – Analyze portal – shifting 2-way connection, not familiar with destination each time
it shifts. Multiversal portal to the same location? Gut feeling that it’s becoming unstable. Ken pulls out the Dimensional Key to see if it’s affected by the portal shifting. At first nothing, but then after a shift
the coating on the key changes to another number. The shifts are speeding up. We should leave? Can we? Trying to teleport feels off like going from plane of fire to Greyhawk. Failed Will saves, Vedis and Kenari think it’s a good idea to go in the portal.

Vedis – Whee! as she pushes off to go into the portal.
Ef flies and grabs her. Kenari checks the key to see if she can at least recognize which portal we’re going through.

The Neothelid has purple lines of energy spring up around it. A moment of white light and screaming almost digital noise for a moment for everyone but Mel and Finn. Mel passes out. Finn – uses surge of Super Genius for Knowledge Illithid. Finn interpets it as a burst of neural data that is deliberate. This is a trap and the walls of the box are decaying around us. Finn throws the crystal dagger at the Neolithid with no effect. Something has been using the corpse as a puppet to set up the trap.

Len – casts Planar Refuge and uses what’s left of the structure to create a safe place like a pocket Eden. I could Plane Shift but it’s weird – it’s like 5 options but 3 are uninhabitable. There’s something that’s kind of like the Ethereal and one that feels like the Plane of Fire, and one that’s just weird.

The face of a Mindflayer with a steel eyepatch and a leather band HUGE semi-transparent appears above us and we get the telepathic equivalent of high-brow laughter. We will of course wind the grand game depite your
slim grasp of greater things. Your end is being recorded for entertainment since we’re not using you for food.

Ef- scroll of greater planar adaptaion. 12 hours.

Ken – screw this monologue. She grabs everyone and plane shifts to what looks like the Ethereal. It’s got the foggy insubstantial feel with distant screams eminating with no visible source. Dark blots that are mirrors
of the starfield are visible. We maneuver to see if we can get out of “the box” so to speak. Nope, the “box” is flying through alternate dimensions.

Len – Casting portal? Won’t work as we’re not on the same plane. Kenari keeps an eye on the key as Korel fumes in anger and the others discuss other possibilities. Finn – I could scamble the portal to randomize where
we end up?

Korel punches the Neolithid in anger and we’re all covered in the crackling purple energy and make Fort saves. Will you stop doing that? OMG SIT DOWN! The dmg heals back over time. The corpse is now in multiple pieces
drifting off. The skyfield perspective is starting to spin. Korel is either unconscious or dead as the stars go bright, lens flare, new star field and Korel is gone.

The floor shifts and a blue planet appears that’s a similar Oerth type planet. Kenari ties us all together as we decide to jump. Apparently the box went spinning when Korel punched the Neolithid and we realize the planet has been a point of refence all the time. Ef casts fly so he can take everyone along with him and drinks a Bull STR potion. As we make out parts of the planet it looks similar to the X-Crawl world.

Ken teleports group to what she remembers was Ellis Island from the X-Crawl world. Here the status is holding a TORCH instead of a SHIELD though. Much of the skyline seems the same, but it’s a lot more developed.
What does the key say? It doesn’t have a number as such but a series of glyphs of the Illithid language instead. Finn – hard to translate into common, but it’s something like “Quarantine or Exile.”

Are there people around? We appear in an out of the way area and we’re attracting a bit of attention. One or two here or there aren’t human (elf, dwarf, etc). Early 2000s Manhattan. Multiple boats in the river. Coast Guard helicopter in the distance. We put our conspicuous things away. “Ya’all are great you look like a bad 80s movie!” Finn – what kind of money do they use here? As we strategize a sizeable black helicopter lands and a dozen guys with black suits and sunglasses come out and head our way. Lead goon in front is a skinny blonde chick, 5’1".

Kenari opens her bag to put her guns in it. When she does she makes a REF save as she dodges as a splash of purplish energy shoots out. She closes the bag quickly and says “Sorry, it wasn’t supposed to do that!”

Ef bodyguards Finn as he walks up to the blonde to talk to her. We need to talk to whomever is making the decisions. Blonde – we can do that. Vedis – detect psionics – detects psionic auras inside helicopter and
woman in trenchcoat and one of the goons. Len – Detect Magic – only auras are ours. Food stands that say “corn dogs” as Finn looks around for a place of comfort as he’s not going anywhere in private. “I was told you’d be an odd group.”

And who was that, exactly? Mr. Tyrex of Tyrex Amalgamated. Vedis looks at the helicopter. Larger troop copter type, back half unoccupied other than a single figure sitting in a wheelchair, scarred and in a suit. Psionics
on par with us. He’s a good telepath as that’s all she can tell.

We go over to eat some corn dogs and chill as we’re not going in the helicopter. Crowd starts to form. Kids “I didn’t think kids liked anime!” Kenari does some Acrobatics and lays out a pouch for coins as Lenata
casts Prestidigitation to provide light effects. Zan – detect Chaos ability triggered – Order from the helicopter. Under the water about 40 ft left of the island. Mid-tier Tanari equivilent. Ef moves closer to the
water’s edge and says “Where are we” in lower planar tongue.


A greenish light under the water and a massive fish-like tentacled figure rises up – a large Aboleth explodes out of the water creating a field of mist around it. The air bubbles protect us from the first FORT save.
Tentacles attack Ef and one hits as 3 our of 4 miss. Slime causes FORT save that he makes. Patch of forearm where the skin is transparent and can see muscles underneath.

Finn talks to bald dude – This is a native problem, please handle it so we can complete our discussion.

Len casts Scourge of the Horsemen to do damage. 48 acid dmg. It turns towards Len and a swirling pattern of air/ball forms between the tentacles – She overcomes the hypnotic pattern and has to reroll the will save to come much closer to failing the 2nd time as she feels the burst of mythic energy.

Ken hops into the helicopter and pulls her dragon pistol to attack once that rapidly heals. Her surprise strike however overcomes DR and does 22pts dmg. Can we take off please? Don’t worry our guys can handle it – pilot. Guy in wheelchair isn’t doing anything yet.

Etsuriko turns Omniweapon into a spear and attacks hitting multiple times. She crits and it suffers 1pt per round INT bleed as she concusses an Aboleth.

Vedis uses Marshall’s Order – Advance – Dinya puts Mel’s body in the helicopter as the others move up and Ken stays in the helicopter. Vedis gets on the helicopter and tosses mind blade at the Aboleth to crit it. Decapitation – double dmg & save or DIE. The Aboleth fails as Vedis slices off it’s head. SKA-DOOSH.

The lady motions us all to the helicopter. If you told us an Aboleth was going to come out we’d have gotten on the helicopter sooner. Nasty Old Things rivalry between Aboleth and Illithids exist apparently. Medic checks out Mel and says she’s stable but not sure why she’s unconscious. The wheelchair guy keeps his back to us and speaks with an electronic device to his throat. You will pardon me my appearance is disconcerting to many.

Finn – We just proved we don’t need you, why do you need us? Will save failed as Finn squeaks and no sound comes out. He then makes himself comfortable as Vedis introduces herself and Kenari assures the guy that we’ve seen some weird shit and won’t get offended if you want to turn around. He’s a tech visionary leader who does research that alerted them of his arrival. Your obscured origins might give us common cause. I oppose the Illithids across the multiverse. You’ve tapped into something more which is why you’ve been directed here. There are few if any here who are able to breach those barriers of quarantine.

His wheelchair turns around and he’s scarred, burned, purplish scarring removed a 3rd of the face on one side. Tentacles and hourglass eye prominent on one side. I created an alternative to eating brains.

Vedis's Last Letter
A letter to Violet

My dearest child,

I write this with the knowledge that I may never see you again. I’ve given instructions as to where you will be taken should we fail, should we succeed but perish, and should I be transported to another reality for an extreme period of time. Penumbra knows my will, and she has pledged to keep you safe.

I don’t know if you will remember much about me when you’re grown, I have been assured that you will, definitely, some day, have sentience. It is difficult to know yourself when you don’t know where you came from, and I have no idea where or when you came from. I just know that for some time, I have been privileged to be the one to protect you and guide you as best I can, since you were entrusted to me by the Sapphire Mage. I know you are a refugee out of your own time, and that you are important enough to the true flow of things that you must not be erased.

I have loved you, dear sweet child, and I regret that I will not see you grow to become the magnificent adult you promise to be. One with such a voracious appetite for life was never meant to stay still. When the song of adventure stirs your blood, I hope that you may carry a piece of me with you, a touchstone of sorts. This necklace contains within it, a small egg, laid by my pet Simmi, the only one of his/her kind. Made entirely out of the Dreaming, and quite possibly the most endearing Kiwana I ever lay eyes on.

If that egg ever hatches, please take care of Simmi’s baby, as I have cared for you. Simmi loved to snack on Tanglefoot bags. Perhaps her young will do the same, or perhaps, as are all things of dreams, it will take on a form determined by your deeper, slumbering mind.

I will always be proud of you. Survival is no lean feat when hunted by forces such as these. I hope that I may strike such a blow as to keep you safe from them forever.

With Love.
-Vedis Valentine

Big Bad Ascension Time!

Mel senses the Illithid. Len remembers Klassath saying that these are Illithid Nobles with more tentacles and more powerful. Eulitharin. Mel attempts a Mind Thrust. 61 dmg halved. Nasty brain burn. She then shoots it
with her Eris pistol but misses. Kenari tosses fire then grabs the two then grabs Dinya and Finn and teleports out of the room over by Ef and Superman. Ef swings with his sword at the masses and crits. 95 dmg. Wipes out the troop on that side.

Dinya shoots the Illithid with her pistol but misses. The illithid attacks Ken, Dinya and Ef. For a moment we feel like we’ve got epic Covid level brain fog but then we’re ok. Ef however feels his INT and CHA drop to 1.
Len casts Restoration on Ef – heals his intelligence, but still Goblin Ef. “I’ve got something you can goblin!” Etsuriko dimension doors in front of him with a Quivering Palm. 5 hits. Hero Point used. The Illithid DIES.

Vedis – Guys, I think there’s something further in.

Finn perception check. Picks up on to the south of us from ther rest of the complex is the sound of zombie like marching feet. The dampening field – feels taps against it ever stronger and more frequent.

Len casts Communal Protection From Evil. Vedis is ectoplasmic and floats into the room. Large crystal spheres with pale violet viscus fluid. Swimming around in them are 3/4 humanoid figures in each one actively moving.
Finn and KorEl enter the room. Mel casts corrosive atmosphere outside the room. Kenari sneaks behind a column and starts building a bomb. Ef flies up next to KorEl. Dinya moves up. Len casts Flame Strike on the right sphere.

Everybody up front makes reflex saves. the shockwave blows Vedis back as the sphere blows. Mel narrowly avoids taking an ancestor to the gut as she gets blown back to Len. Ef is blown back and KorEl is slightly staggered. Shockwave of force energy.

The crystal shatters down one side and begins leaking as the room gets brighter and reveals the back end of the chamber and the flowering Neozealot. Abandoned tadpole that consumes the others and becomes huge and feral.

Etsuriko moves forward of Finn and holds. Fin goes to the Eulitharid to cut its head off and search the body. Us in the back hear a popcorn sizzling in a pan sound as we see the ranks of thralls marching into the corrosive
atmosphere until they disolve and fall over and build up a pile of mushy flesh.

The beast in the back rears up and flail for a moment as a heat distortion goes through the air and hits KorEl and blows him back. Ef reflex save to avoid being crushed. THAT HURT! He flies up to take a swing and misses as it shimmers.

Third punch hits and he nails it for 30 rocking it back slightly. Mel slides behind a column and drops a Polar Vortex on the creature. Ef moves up to attack the left sphere. The sphere shatters and figures flow out.
Will saves as we hear a psychic scream reverberate through the room. The Neothelid roars. Ef will save just makes it against a beam of psychic energy. Len casts Holy Ice on the Neothelid.

Etsuriko does full Hong Kong jump into the beast and uses Quivering Palm. Vedis uses her psionic focus. Maximized Cold Energy Push.

Finn finds a crystal dagger with a static feel. He then closes and locks the door to the room.

There is a cloud of sparks around Etsuriko. She just makes Will save. 32 dmg. Psychic Crush. KorEl moves up flying punch. Misses 3 times.

Mel casts Control Atmosphere in front of polar vortex. Toxic atmosphere.

Kenari runs up and tosses her bomb into the critters maw and blows out one of the tentacles and ports back behind a column. 20 dmg. USED HERO POINT. Immediately feels like being watched as it’s staring at me.

Ef casts scorching ray and then moves up to attack. 23 dmg. As the Neothelid dies purplish electric currents run across it as it decays. The floor falls away revealing space underneath it as the floor slowly collapses.
The space isn’t one we’ve mapped but Ef places it as almost the same as the skies above the city of Manhattan in the X-Crawl world. The starfield fades as a blinding light comes through on that side.