Gestalt:- Army of Light

Defiled Ivory, Part 2

The mekillot made its incredibly slow way in Bodach. Eventually, it reached a very well ordered market place, overseen by thousands of clone soldiers. As the group tried to sneak out of their cover under the mekillot’s saddle, the crew inside struck – revealing themselves as powerful members of the Veiled Alliance, they flew towards the painfully stretched and emaciated figure on a balcony observing everything.

Very few even got close. And those that did, that met the gaze of the figure, sagged to the ground and stared around in confusion, seeming lost. They were quickly overcome and dragged away.

Even stranger, the native Athasians collapsed during the attack, sharp pains filling them. Even Danara was effected, as where the hundreds of thousands of Kreen surrounding the city. Shortly after this, three bright lights were seen streaking across the sky.

Taking advantage or the confusion, the group managed to sneak up to the balcony Doubt had been occupying, and inflitrated his palace. Passing a number of the beaten and abused girls they’d seen at the gate, the group reached a large chamber. In the centre, Doubt was talking to a monsterous insect – The Sin of Consumption. He turned as they tried to sneak past, and nearly obliterated Keirna’s self will before Constance bravely intervened. Even an Eladrin Paladin quailled before the revealed power of a Sin, but Doubt had other plans than to obliterate them all personally.

Leaving, he removed the floor and let his test subject engage them. To Danara’s consternation, this was swiftly revealed to be her father Brandis. Despite all of their best efforts, none of the group could get through to the Mul – Keirna even tried reading his thoughts, only to find the Tower.

Just as they decided to get serious – that he must be a clone – Brandis channelled a spell Danara had never heard him speak of. As the air around them filled with hideous energy, everyone dived into the clear space around Brandis, who was all too happy to engage them in melee. This proved costly for him, as Constance stepped inside his guard and carved into him. As he staggered back, Keirna dived out of the roiling energy and cut through him with a single blow from Compensation.

As the energy cleared, the room was revealed – rows of coffin objects, each containing a growing clone of Brandis. After attempting to burn them, Keirna grew frustrated and cut the wires leading into each tube. This forced the unstable Brandis compounds out, and as they amalgamated, the group wisely hid from the Brandis Ooze. Finding that it had solified blocking the only passage out, they blew up a wall into a control centre. The Overseers inside proved barely a distraction before they looked around, saw a deeply suspicious vault, and blew a hole through the wall to get to that as well.

After clearing the traps here, they opened the door…and found Nothingness. Danara jumped through it anyway, and was apparently obliterated. After a time, Constance followed. Keirna decided against it, and waited outside, gradually more and more worried as the entire palace seemed to be shaking.

Inside the Nothing, Danara had found the true Brandis sitting alone in a dark sphere. Attempting to get through to him seemed to have little effect, and the sphere only got more cramped as equipment was thrown into it, followed by an armoured paladin.

Neither Constance nor Danara could find any exit, but strangely enough, Constance’s cat seemed quite capable of exiting and entering at will. They began using him to deliever messages to Keirna, informing her of what was going on.

Meanwhile, Keirna had rummaged through her pockets, and found the Caltrop. Not really sure why, she decided to throw it into the Nothing. Inside, it began swiftly growing – eventually it pierced the door and Keirna dragged it out. Throwing it back in again, it was noted that it pushed back the sides of the sphere surrounding Brandis, and was getting hot. Eventually, it ceased expanding the sphere, but cracks were appearing around its points.

Danara managed to get briefly through to Brandis, but it was minor at best. Still, it was enough to get the barbarian to throw Danara out of the sphere, something Brandis felt he would have no problem doing.

Thinking fast, Keirna realised that it was Brandis’ doubt keeping him imprisoned, and the cat could enter and leave because it was feline, and therefore simply incapable of doubting itself.

With this in mind, they re-entered and tried to persuade Brandis to stop doubting himself. Unfortunately, with some very poorly chosen words, he decided to end things. Taking up a shard of Ashkandi, he slammed it through his own skull.

Ironically, this dropped the sphere of doubt. Dragging the slowly healing Mul with them, the group ran for it through a steadly shaking and collapsing palace. Heading up some stairs towards sunlight streaming in through a breached Tower, they observed an immense, hundred armed monster fighting Doubt and his armies. Leaving the Hekatonkhire to its fight, the group ran into the desert, where they found a convinient hermit psionic master to heal Brandis…and then Dreamkeep dragged them back.

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