The Disciples of Ashael

In The Footsteps of Turtles

The Dragon-slayers returned to the city with the artifact in hand. The Disciples relished little fanfare as they handed the relic of endless swamp to their superiors. After all, this operations was covert. Had the city known it was days away from becoming yet another bog for a Black Dragon panic would surely have consumed the city far sooner than the swamp itself. Lack of city wide admiration aside, the team did however enjoy their loot from the remains of the Black Dragon. These mystical items would surely come to use in the near future, and beyond. In the meantime, a good days rest is probably more appreciated than anything else.

For some of the team a day off not only meant recuperation, but also meant a day to put their acquired gold to some use. Carric, Jin, Nila, and Raven all had the same idea to pay their disgusting merchant acquaintance Blister a visit. Blister presented the group with a list of items that he was willing to part with. Eagerly Carric grabbed up a singing clam, knowing that it would prove to be quite an amusing form of entertainment. Raven purchased a rag of filth, and tracking coin. While Jin nearly emptied his wallet to buy the monocle of vigor presence for the sake of having a monocle. The monocle also had a strong sounding name, although he didn’t quite know what use it had. Mako arrived just in time to envy Carric’s singing clam, at which she found much glee from it’s serenades. The evening drew near as did the shopping spree. So our daring shoppers returned to their abodes at the Disciple’s HQ.

Back at last, Jin decided to rest before the night came. However, others within the temple were did not have such boring plans. Raven, despite the urges of secrecy his book instilled in him, sought out the assistance of his comrade Carric in deciphering the secret code his heart’s former host used to scribe his memoirs. Together they were able to determine a hidden passage existed in a room within the Disciple’s Temple. The duo left to inspect the room, careful to avoid detection. The singing clam, however, did not exert a bit of subtlety after Carric wished it’s company for their secret mission. The two found a candle stick, one which the two believed was a switch of some kind. Inspecting the item, Raven recognized it as a mechanical mechanism. They activated the device, which opened a door behind a painting within the room. Upon removing the painting the pair discovered a descending passageway leading to what… they didn’t know. As Raven and Carric entered the staircase, with singing clam in tow, Nila reclined in her room listening to the clam’s crooning grow quieter and quieter.

Curious as she was, a gaze out the window of her room proved more curious. The familiar figure of Doomblade, their recently discovered foe and mastermind behind the Black Dragon’s plot, was seen in a deep conversation on the streets of Blackburough just outside their headquaters. Nila left in such a hurry, that she did not even alert her comrades to the villain’s appearance. Upon exiting streetside, Doomblade had vanished, but the mysterious person whom he spoke with was still within the area. Nila bravely attempted a pursuit, but was spotted easily. Even her shifting powers did not aid her in dropping the man’s suspicion. The man slipped around a corner, and vanished before Nila could apprehend him. However his escape route was found. An opening to the sewer lay nearby. An ominous feeling washed over her. Tales of the sewer’s dangers are known to every citizen of Blackburough.

Back in Disciple HQ, Carric and Raven were just as unsettled. At the end of the staricase lay a laboratory, recently used, eery, and completely mysterious. (I can’t recall any specifics so anyone one else in the know fill in here – matt). Above the duo in the room where they staircase was discovered, Mako appeared. Intent to investigate why the singing clam became silent, she was only confused to find an empty room with a new doorway that wasn’t there earlier. Before she could pursue this new discovery, Nila rushed into the room! “Doomblade is within the city!” she said, “I lost him, but found where an associate of his is hiding… the sewers!” Raven and Carric overhearing a commotion from above, and learned of Doomblade’s discovery. Deciding that a day off was not in their best interests after recent events, they roused the reluctant Jin, who was enjoying his lazy day, into hunting down this new Doomblade ally.

They followed Nila to the location of the sewer entrance where their quarry slipped away to, and entered as well. Immediately, to their dismay, they were faced with an onslaught of undead creatures. The ghouls were slow to attack, but the Disciples went on the offensive first. Striking and attempting to draw the enemies in for the kill. As the battle began, Jin grinned as he began to realize the magical purpose of his monocle. Numbers representing his enemies’ vitality floated above his foes’ heads, and diminished as they were injured. Nila let out a volly of arcane power and smited several minor skeletons as they approached. Mako did her best to gather her enemies’ attention, however one powerful ghoul slipped her attention. Raven, ahead of the pack and in the midst of the ghoul horde, garnered the undead creature’s ire, and nearly paid for it with his life. Seeing his cohort fall, Carric was quick to lend aid to Raven by doing whatever it is Bard’s do. Raven arose and slipped back into a defensive position. Nila summoned a thunder pillar admist Raven’s attackers in order to better defend her injured allies. The bulk of the undead monsters ran to avoid the danger of staying too close to the arcane attack, but Nila was quick to shift the pillar in chase. This however gave an opening to the most powerful ghoul to slip by. Undaughted, Jin attacked the creature in several failed attempts, but nearly suffered the same fate as Raven when the abomination attacked him. Watching Jin retreat in pain, Mako irate with the creatures audacity assaulted the creature to protect her comrades. The remaining ghouls fell one by one, as Mako faced of with the most dangerous of them. Raven avenged his earlier, embedding several shadow darts into the creature’s body. Mako, while distracted by be assaulted on two fronts, was struck down by the creature. The paladin collapsed in the retched muck. Carric was too weak to lend aid after such a rough battle, the monster had to be taken down first. The group assaulted the creature together in order to lend aid to Mako before it was too late. Then Jin, rushing toward the creature delivered a solid slam of his boot to the battered being. The living corpse collapsed as it crashed against the wall. “Look at you! Again you sneak in and take the kill!” Raven complained. Jin smirked and chuckled despite the severity of his injuries. Carric rushed to Mako’s side and lent his healing knowledge to stabilize her before she bled out. The group caught their breath. They had just entered the infamous sewers of Blackburough, and managed to avoid succumbing to it’s dangers luckily. As they rested the wondered how they would fair as they ventured further in after Doomblade’s mysterious new ally.

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