Way of the Wicked
28 - The Watchwall
Chapter 27: On to the Vale
With Raiju having joined us we headed into the Darkling lands and met with the Duergar chieftain. Thanks to the silver tongues of Tylus, Frohike, and Dunn we managed to convince him to loan us his son and a hundred warriors. They were to await a signal and charge forth at our time of greatest need while in the Vale.
We then returned to Ghastonhall to prepare for the assault on the Vale. During our rest a strange devil named Dessiter came to visit us. He told us he was an emissary of Asmodues and offered us a trio of Nessian Hounds in exchange for a pledge to seek out and destroy a creature at the Temple of Aroden Made Manifest called Ara Mathra. After this we decided to head there in advance of the Bugbear forces and also stop by and visit the medusa that Tiadora mentioned.
Frohike used the upcoming battle as an excuse to feed his addiction to vision juice and we learned that in order to defeat the medusa we needed to destroy her pride. When we arrived at a ruined temple the medusa, a woman named Izevel, immediately attacked in an almost suicidal fashion. We managed to defeat and bind her. When questioned she proved to be filled with terrible anger and grief and claimed that she had long been trapped in the temple after being cursed by Desna. I had Grumblejack toss her over a shoulder and carry her out. With this simple act she was free and swore us eternal loyalty. The woman was clearly insane from her long imprisonment but this did not prevent her from being of use to the cause.
We then proceeded to the Watch-wall of the Vale which proved to be a formidable obstacle. We attempted to infiltrate as pilgrims but our disguise was detected and we were rebuffed by the arrogant watch captain.
We then sent in Raiju with his gaseous form and invisibility to get us a layout of the place. He determined there were nearly sixty armed guards in the building and a pair of strange creatures on the roof immediately detected him even in his gaseous form. It was these beasts that likely spotted us when we tried to infiltrate.
We had a few days before the arrival of the Bugbear warriors and there was also the possibility of using our Duergar allies to breach the fortress. The battle for the Vale was about to begin.