Black Sails over Leudendorf

Yarashad

 

 

After all this time…Yarashad.

 

 

 

 

Ketham

Sakari

Curtis

Gabriella

Fidanza

Dragomir

Draya

Vanev

Romany

Grey

Rook

(Jonathan

“Johnny”

Grey)

Elfin Archer

Human Witch

Human Anchorite

Deva Blademaster

Human Gypsy

Human Highwayman

 

 

AND

 

Aroth

Orlan

MacShane

Tianna

Conjurer

Human Druid Barbarian

Elfin Bladesinger

 

 

http://graphics.elysiumgates.com/images/bud6kybar.gif

 

November 17, 740

Act II, Scene XXXVII: The Isle of Mist

Yarashad brings its own weather. When it appears in the archipelago, the sunlight dims and the skies fill with rolling purple storm clouds that deliver a constant threatening drizzle.  The sense of towering mountains ringing the island.

The adventurers ask Captain Caladon to circumnavigate the island.  The good captain is all too eager to comply, seeing not only a king’s ransom in lost booty but also a route home in the misty isle before them.

About an hour after dawn, after the Sea Lion and Kraken’s Claw have sailed from the northwest edge to the southwest, Lucien seeks out Kari.  The mousy scholar says that he has determined something more.  He believes that the isle has come to the presence of the gathered artifacts, but they will not stay for long.  Lucien anticipates a window of twenty-four hours before Yarashad returns to wherever it has lain these last hundred fifty years.

Kari tells Lucien that she will spread the word.  She asks whether he will accompany them to the island, and Lucien is hesitant.  He says that he wants to accompany them, in order to bring Flint’s ashes to the beaches of gold sand.  But he is concerned that he will be a liability to the others; he is not a warrior, and Yarashad seems far more dangerous not that it has arrived.

Before running off, Kari assures him that they will take care of him if he chooses to come along.  They will make sure that Flint’s ashes make their way to the island.

She then gathers the others, and they begin to focus on a more immediate place to make landfall.  Someone recalls that one of Daen Danud’s maps was a sketch of Yarashad, and Kari finds it among the papers and scrolls she has collected over the last month and a half.  It seems to hold a clue—or at least a starting point.  The adventurers ask Captain Caladon to make all possible speed to the only landmark on Daen’s map of Yarash—the southeast corner and “The Devil’s Mainmast.”

As the ships make their way along the southern edge of Yarashad, Ketham joins Teodorus to look for a landmark.  Even with his elfin eyes, though, he cannot make out anything differentiating the hint of one mountainside from the next.

Kathem returns to the deck, where Caladon is making plans for the away team.  Lazarre will again row them to shore, but this time he is coming back.  They will not leave a man alone on the beaches of Yarashad, and, considering the fate of the last man who accompanied the adventurers (to the island of Moab Cys’Varion), Lazarre will not be accompanying them inland.

The adventurers will not go without a means to return, though.  They will tow along and leave the boat they brought from Libertyville.

As they prepare for the journey, Lucien makes the decision to carry Flint personally to Yarashad.  Kari encourages him, finding new courage in her protective instinct.

 

“Stay in the middle of us.  We’ll protect you.”

-Sakari Curtis to Lucien Buche 

 

 

Ketham attempts to use the power of the spyglass of Harrimast to see through the fog.  Three minutes later, when he comes to, Teodorus is holding him.  The spyglass lies on the floor of the crow’s nest at his feet.

When he has his bearings again, Ketham returns once more to the deck of the Sea Lion.  The adventurers briefly discuss passing the spyglass to Rook, and they consider using the sextant of Harrimast to attempt to part the mists surrounding the isle, but ultimately they decide to save these risky artifacts for situations that more clearly merit their use.

They set out with Lazarre to find land.

The fog turns into a torrential downpour as they make their final approach to the island.  Even better, a thick, soupy fog pours off the waves, occluding the island and reducing visibility to a matter of yards.  Through the forbidding mists they see just the hint of shapes. They glimpse the stony inclines of mountains, ragged and vast beneath the fog. At their peaks crags suggest themselves like faces under a shroud. Only as they approach do they get an idea of the scale: the fearsome summits soar many hundreds of feet into the air and begin almost at the waterline. And they form a high, unbroken wall around the island, a formidable gate around the treasures of Yarashad.

 

 

Act II, Scene XXXVIII: Stoney Beaches (Arrival +2.5 Hours)

Rowing through the driving rain dampens Lazarre’s normally devil-may-care attitude.  When the adventurers disembark, Lazarre is reluctant to go back through the storm.

Hoping to bolster the man’s spirits on the long journey back to the ship, Ketham hands him the book of erotic imagery he took from the Smoking Dragon back in Leudendorf.  Lazarre cheers at this, showing a bit of his old temperament. 

Then Draya delivers a limerick, and Lazarre—though at first disliking the tone of the limerick—comes away with a broader smile.

Lazarre vanishes back into the mists, and the storm surrounding Yarashad. 

In his wake, Lucien stands next to Kari.  He holds the urn and stares at the stones of the beach, unsure what to do.  Kari consoles him, assuring him that Flint will be put to rest when they find the buried treasures, and that they will leave.

Ketham jogs off.  He hears gulls in the mist bank but cannot see them.  Spurred by the gulls, he begins checking for nests among the rocks, and a possible way to climb through to the interior of the island.

Behind, Kari takes Lucien further inland, trying to preoccupy the little scholar with something to do.  Her movement away from the crowd spurs the others to take action, as well.  Quick decisions are made; Rook and Jhondal dash off after Ketham while the rest stay close to Kari and Lucien.

Romany stays near to Lucien for a darker reason.  Like Draya and Ketham, she is concerned that Lucien may reveal an evil nature at some point on this island.

Down the shore, Ketham, Rook, and Jhondal hear a moaning sound that comes from high above.  Ketham stops, listening—does the sound repeat when the wind picks up?  The sounds comes again after a couple minutes.  Then a faint breeze gusts down from overhead. 

 

“There is a cave mouth up there.”

-Ketham

 

As Ketham leads the way towards the moaning sound, Jhondal points out the gulls that Ketham heard earlier.  Ketham spots them, wheeling towards the source of the moaning sound.  He takes this as confirmation of a cave overhead.  He sends Jhondal to gather the others.

While the others gather, Ketham and Rook find a place to climb up.

The sound comes again. Then another warm breeze.

Ketham spots a series of ledges that he believes might let him start an ascent of the Devil’s Mainmast.  Romany follows, giving a short distance.  Draya follows her.

Climbing the Devil’s Mainmast is tough, sweaty work. It takes the adventurers the better part of an hour to struggle up the sheer inclines that form the mountain’s base. As they do, they begin to notice that some of the hand and footholds they’re using seem to be a little too well placed to be natural. Further investigation reveals the nooks in the rock have been scratched out with stone and, judging by the flecks of blood, fingernails.

Soon afterwards, Ketham discovers a trail, a zigzag path that leads steeply but surely to the tunnel overhead.  About halfway up the cliff face he sees a hole gouged into the rock, a mammoth fissure at least as big as the boat that brought him there. Vapor curls from the cave’s lip, and a dim red light comes from inside the cavern. In the shifting half-light of Yarashad it looks like an open wound

As Ketham considers this, and Romany and Draya climb nearer, pebbles skip down from the path above.  Later, an apparently startled trio of birds bursts from between a couple of boulders farther up the trail.

Using rope brought from the Sea Lion, Draya begins to pull up the others.  Jhondal goes first, and then he is able to assist Draya pull of Lucien.  When the little scholar drops thirty feet, nearly losing his life, the adventurers take further precaution.  Gabriella bandages Lucien and then prays for his healing, and then Rook lashes Lucien to him.  He puts his arms around Lucien and coaches Lucien regarding how to help climb the mountainside with him.

With assistance from Draya above and Rook just behind, Lucien makes the climb to the trail zigzagging up the side of the Devil’s Mainmast.

The next load up is a bundle of Gabriella’s armor with the note, “Can’t climb.”

Capitalizing on Lucien’s skill with knots, the adventurers lower another length of rope, this one fitted with loops.  They use these to pull Kari, and then Gabriella to the trail.

 

 

Act II, Scene XXXIX: The Blood Tunnel (Arrival +4 Hours)

Ketham stays one switchback ahead of the rest of the group.

As the adventurers approach the tunnel, the sanguine glow from inside grows brighter, and the ghostly groaning grows strong enough to rattle the surrounding rocks. Then, as they peer into the tunnel…

As the crimson mists lift, they see a roughly diamond-shaped tunnel with coarse red walls. It looks as though blood drenched the interior long ago, which then congealed into hideous bubbles, boils, and spider-web strands that stretch down from the cavern’s roof. As they look closer, they spot something odd where the corners of the diamond would be: deep black grooves in the rock that stretch the length of the tunnel.

Suddenly, from above, Ketham hears a cackle. “He tried hanging on, he did! But it didn’t work! The good lord threw him right through the mountain!”

The man hanging from the tunnel ceiling is as pathetic a creature as the adventurers have ever seen: leather-skinned and bone-thin, with impossibly long, wild hair, bulging eyes, and just one sturdy tooth. He wears only a pair of sailor’s pants ripped above the knee and held in place with a length of frayed rope. He’s enthusiastic and friendly with the adventurers, eventually shaking Romany’s hand with a strong grip, but his conversational skills have suffered after long years of solitude. For a good while, he won’t answer their questions; he just keeps babbling about the death of Yarash—which he appears to have witnessed firsthand.

Comments include: “He tried to go against the good lord, and look where it got him! Ripped and chucked! What a howl he let out when the good lord done it! Scrambling and struggling!”

Then, finally, something clicks, and his eyes go wide. “Hey now! How’d ye get here, then? My map—ye found my map. Praise the sea and stars!”

Kari produces Flint’s map, and Harry takes it joyously.  He capers with it, even going so far as to lick it.

When Rook asks Lucien about Harry, Lucien seems flummoxed, and not just by the man’s presence.

 

“I don’t know.  He seems strange.  And he seems to enjoy licking paper, which is not good at all for the longevity of the paper.”

-Lucien Bouche regarding Old Mad Harry

 

 

Harry’s story emerges when the adventurers ask for more details regarding his map.  He served on one of Leudendorf’s ships that attacked the Full-Fathom Five many decades ago. One of the corsairs rammed his vessel, and the impact threw him overboard, where a whirlpool dragged him in with the demon pirates. He saw them scatter to the Islands of the Damned; he saw their vile lord ripped to pieces and flung to Yarashad; he saw Yarash piled under a thousand years’ worth of sunken gold. The tides bore him to the treasure island before it vanished, and Harry scribbled out a map of the archipelago in his own blood. Just as Yarashad vanished, he flung the map as far as he could, and he prayed that it would find its way back to Leudendorf.

And it did!  It did!  The adventurers found Harry’s map!

As the adventurers creep through the tunnel, the walls start to get narrower and narrower and the congealed blood drippings become as thick as cobwebs. Soon enough, they have to hack their way through the hardened fluids. Harry, meanwhile, moves nimbly among the strands, declaring, “I know these caverns like the veins in me hand!”

Finally, the adventurers hack away at a cluster of blood webs and find themselves facing a passage the size of a torpedo tube. Even if they strip off their armor, it’s a tight fit. The squeeze becomes inhuman when Harry (who’s gone on ahead, cackling and scrambling on all fours like a greased weasel) rounds a few bends in the corridor, and then vanishes up a chute in the blood-caked rock.

Harry croaks, “He left a lot of his wine in this rock, Yarash did! And burns like brine, so the rock don’t want it!”

All of which is picturesque but doesn’t help the adventurers, who have absolutely no hope of squeezing through the ever-shrinking passageway.

Ketham produces the spyglass of Harrimast.  He attempts to gauge the distance to the far side of the blood tunnel, but Harry is of little aid.  Though friendly, he cannot be terribly specific.  He is impressed when he focuses on the spyglass.

 

“Powerful trinket ye have there!”

-Old Mad Harry

 

 

When it becomes clear that the adventurers are about to exit the tunnel, Harry excuses himself, walking back to the entrance.  Rook drifts along after him, keeping an eye on Harry.  He watches the old salt turn over a rock, revealing a cache of items.  He retrieves a rusty cutlass, a small bag of Leudendorf gold, and a small holy symbol of Harrimast. When he notices Rook observing him, he gestures with the medallion, saying, “It’s me good-luck trinket!”

Ketham uses the spyglass after a prayer to the sea god, and soon the blood tunnel opens before the adventurers.

 

 

Act II, Scene XL: Nature’s Way (Arrival +4.5 Hours)

The interior of Yarashad now lies before the adventurers, dark and dangerous. Looking down at Yarashad, they have an unsettling thought: from the outside, it seemed like the mountain range was intended to keep people out. Now, it’s clear the high crags were designed to keep things in. The island landscape spread out below them is a tableau of pure evil. A forest sends black-barked trees high into the mists—trees that seem to tremble and groan without wind to urge them on. Beyond the woodland lies a roiling, steaming marshland, blood-red in the dim light and giving off a sulfurous stink strong enough to reach them even halfway up the mountain. In the middle of this fetid bog, a black spire rises from the cursed earth.

“That’s where he lies,” Harry says. “The wicked one! That’s where the good lord flung him. He keeps him locked up fast. Buried like a pirate, he is—with a treasure chest on top!”

The Forest of the Damned begins at the mountains’ base and spreads to occupy about one-third of the valley. Just before the adventurers begin their descent, Harry warns Romany not to talk to the trees, saying, “They got nothing good to say!”

His warning is borne out soon enough.

As they step into the dense wood, the air fills with familiar creaks and groans: the sounds of a boat tacking against the wind, they realize with a start. The noise is no accident; in fact, it’s grotesquely appropriate. The trees aren’t made of solid wood. They are planks, the kind that make up the deck of the adventurers’ own ship, grown thickly together and bound with brass collars. And jutting out from the north face of every last one of these oaken grotesqueries is a figurehead—a leering, cowled figure with clenched teeth.

As they stare closely at one, its eyes spring open.  For a moment they appear to be black. But they quickly realize they have no iris. An emblem—a skull and bones with five stars—crowns the head.

The adventurers quickly realize that the figureheads are carved into the likenesses of cultists of Yarash. They are, in fact, the ghosts of cultists, damned by Harrimast to wander with their cursed lord in eternal exile.

The evil figurehead trees of Yarashad can’t attack the adventurers, but they can weaken their resolve. The cultist spirits quickly assess the party’s strengths, weaknesses, and motivations, and they begin playing on them. Their purpose: to persuade the heroes to return the artifacts to Yarash. They whisper that taking the artifacts off the island ensures that Yarash will linger on the island forever, his evil leaching off into the world. But if they revived the deity, they could destroy him once and for all.

Others whisper that Harrimast is playing the party for fools, that he will never let them have the gold. Yarash, on the other hand, would be more than willing to strike a bargain.

If that isn’t engaging enough, close to a dozen monstrous centipedes scuttle among the trees, and they attack the adventurers as they try to push through the forest without engaging the ghosts.  The creatures are the size of horse-drawn carts, and their pincers and stingers alike promise doom for the adventurers.  True to their word, the adventurers keep Lucien—and Harry, who fights with his pitted and rusted cutlass—at the center of their ranks for as long as possible. 

One centipede withdraws from the fight, badly injured, but the rest either fight to the death or are killed before they can flee the adventurers’ deadly weapons. 

In the wake of the battle, crouched in the haunted forest and drenched by pouring rain, the adventurers must stop and bandage their wounds.  Kari prayers to Ezra to neutralize the poison in Rook’s veins even though she has been stung more than once herself.

Then, she considers Kari.  Kari is already badly injured, and weakened by the stings of centipedes.  If Gabriella does not heal Kari, Kari may die.  But if she gives her last prayer to neutralize poison to her friend, then she will have to weather all the venom coursing through her own body without divine aid.

She makes a swift decision and saves Kari’s life.

Gabriella senses that there is no time for her to bolster herself before the poison works its course.  In desperation, Romany and Ketham give the anchorite their protective items to bolster her.  Gabriella prays for strength from Ezra, as well, and she manages to survive the ravages of the scorpion venom within her as it works through her system. 

In the soaking rain, Gabriella prays for her own healing, but the venom left her short of breath.  She knows her endurance will not be enough to carry her all the way to the tower.  She removes her full plate down to the back and breast; her companions agree to carry the pieces that she has removed. 

With the cultist spirits foretelling their doom, the adventurers huddle in the rain, performing healing and using curative herbs and praying for healing.

 

 

Act II, Scene XLI: The Boneyard (Arrival +4.75 Hours)

The adventurers resolve to cut the journey to the spire short.  Ketham produces the spyglass of Harrimast and attempts to open a portal to the far side of the island.  His conviction is tested and found lacking, and the power of the spyglass knocks him unconscious on the forest floor.

Rook takes up the spyglass and attempts the same, uttering a prayer to Harrimast before invoking the artifact’s power.  This time a portal opens, and the adventurers find themselves looking through a large, round opening in reality, like the enlarged end of a spyglass.

They step through, to entrance of the prison of Yarash.  The spire rises some 300 feet from the marshes, jet-black in the sulfurous mists, covered with ridges and crenulations and crude sculptures of tortured faces. At the base of the tower lies a 10-foot carving of a skull and crossbones, with five stars above the head. The jaw of the skull is open wide—a door leading in.

Beyond the door lies a narrow iron stairway that coils around a central shaft until it reaches the top of the tower. More faces line the stairwell, wrought into the iron of the walls and the steps.  As the adventurers pass them, they cry out in Yarash’s hissing, snarling voice. Yarash repeats the cajoling and threats of the forest spirits, but he taunts them more personally. The figureheads simply sussed the players by appearance; Yarash actually drops in personal details. He whispers to Draya that Jhondal let him be burned by the tiki guardians on Zoltan Zaska’s island, among other enticements to ally with Yarash.

He is particularly cruel to Harry.   “Thank you, maroon, for bringing me fresh meat…I will save you a shank or two, rest assured.

About halfway up the staircase, the adventurers hear a clicking from both ends of the staircase. Then, two huge monstrous scorpions come down the stairs; another two come up from behind.

Draya and Ketham work swiftly to remove the threat of the two coming from above, but the two at the rear face a weakened Gabriella and Romany.  Jhondal charges the scorpions, but is felled by their savage attack.  Their poison does not kill him, but he collapses, barely clinging to life.

The adventurers rally, killing the last two scorpions.  Kari brings Jhondal to consciousness with dytanny, but he is still ravaged by the venom.  Harry and Romany help Jhondal, who can no longer climb the stairs on his own. 

 

 

Act II, Scene XLII: …on a Dead God’s Chest (Arrival +5.5 Hours)

At the top of the stairs, the adventurers find a circular room with an enormous pit in the middle.  On the other side of the hole sits what appears to be a grotesque sculpture of black iron, a collection of limbs twined  horribly and grasping at the air with long wicked claws. Forming a backdrop for this misshapen array are a pair of wings, torn and broken but still spanning some 10 feet. Between them, hanging monstrously below the ribcage on a serpentine iron neck, is a face: a bare black skull with a shield-sized maw. Burned into the forehead of this villainous visage are five stars.

“There he lies,” Harry says. “The wicked one himself!”

Once again, Harry can fill in details for the adventurers: Harrimast flung Yarash into this island, and then piled treasure atop him. When Harrimast ripped the island out of the world and set it wandering, he coated his former first mate’s physical body with molten metal, and he made a tower of the same material. The treasure lies straight down the shaft, many hundreds of feet down. But Harry tells them to beware, for Harrimast placed some enchantment on it. Horrible things await anyone who tries to take the booty.

Memories are returning to him, he says.  He appears momentarily disoriented by the experience.  He hasn’t been here since he first arrived on the isle, after all.  Mainly, he’s been surviving on gulls and grubs along the stony beaches near the blood tunnel.

As the adventurers take in the scenery and Harry’s tale, something rustles behind the remains of Yarash.  A host of ashen, dead pirates steps into view. All of them wear cultist gear, their faces twisted in expressions of unimaginable horror! These are the Boney Lonesomes—refugees from the other Full-Fathom Five crews who made their way to Yarashad before it vanished, and they swore allegiance to the wicked pirate lord. When they plunged themselves onto the exposed claws of the entombed Yarash, they were reborn as beings of pure evil.

“Very clever of ye!” roars the ironbound skull. “You have done what my Five could not. Return the weapons that were rightfully mine, and I shall give you the greatest honor imaginable: I will allow you to sail at my side! Together we shall rule the oceans of the world and chain Harrimast the Coward beneath the waves! Refuse, and you will haunt these chambers for all eternity!”

Harry immediately calls out: “Fer the love of the good lord’s galleon, don’t meet their eyes! They’ll kill ye with a look, they will!”

The adventurers know that they will need to use the Regalia of Harrimast to survive this battle.  Gabriella begins her ascent up the steps, but in her condition she is slow to bring the bell of Harrimast into play.  The pistol, however, passes hands quickly to Kari, who reaches around the corner and unleashes a fireball upon the undead pirates.

The wounds are severe, but none of the creatures falls.

Worse, when she attempts to fire a second fireball, her conviction is found lacking.  Kari slumps to the floor of the steps, unconscious while most of the battle plays out around her.  Lucien rushes to Kari’s side, returning some of the bravery she showed him earlier, cradling her and trying to rouse her from her comatose state.

The adventurers stage a battle that they know is a losing proposition.  Though the pirates were badly burned by the fireball, each of them still poses a lethal threat with its dead, black stare. 

Ketham managed to fell one, toppling it into the pit.

Draya stands his ground before the onrushing horde, buying Ketham the chance to keep firing arrows.  His deva’s resistance to necromantic attacks serves him well, for a time, at least.

At last, Gabriella rushes to the top of the steps with the bell of Harrimast.  She sounds the bell, driving a half dozen of the Boney Lonsesomes to flee into the cold embrace of the pit.

Draya and Gabriella fall, their very souls wrenched by the gaze of the Boney Lonesomes.  For a moment, Ketham stands alone, with Lucien cradling Kari just behind. 

Rook pushes his way to the top of the stairs, taking the pistol from Lucien as he passes the scholar and Kari.  He uses the pistol to fire the third fireball the pistol can manage for the day.

The last of the Boney Lonesomes is destroyed.

 

 

Act II, Scene XLIII: The Payoff (Arrival +6.5 Hours)

Yarash rages against the adventurers.  Yarash barks, “Ye have won nothing! By challenging me, ye have steered into the wind! I will not forget ye nor what ye have done here. I am not through with ye…”

He is helpless in his iron prison, and the adventurers taunt the fallen demi-god.  Ketham is particularly offensive, going so far as to “decorate” the skull’s eye sockets with arrows and reaching out over the pit to paint a mustache on him.  Draya asks whether anyone needs to urinate, clearly insinuating Yarash would be a good lavatory.

Harry caution the adventurers, if not out of self-preservation, then out of concern for their progeny.  Yarash is eternal.  Eventually, he will be released, and he will carry out his threats of vengeance against the adventurers’ offspring, even a thousand years hence.  The adventurers show little concern for these warnings, but they do turn their attention to the stairs descending into the pit soon after.

Lucien whispers to the urn with Flint’s ashes that their journey is almost at its end.

 

“I think we’re almost there.”

-Lucien Buche to the ashes of Flint

 

 

The adventurers must climb straight down some 600 feet to reach the treasure chamber. Iron faces line the shaft way as well, and each one tosses a discouraging word to the players. (“How do ye propose to get all that treasure back to you ship?” “Do you really think he’ll let you leave with it?” “Don’t think I won’t find a way out. And when I do, I’m coming for you!”)0

When they get to the bottom, they see a huge round chamber filled with mounds upon mounds of treasure—all the gold coins, necklaces, goblets, anything they can imagine.

Nothing they imagined can prepare them for the sight. It isn’t a king’s ransom; it’s a god’s ransom. The wealth of 10,000 years of shipwrecks sits before them, arrayed in great swelling dunes that rise above their heads and nearly scrape the ceiling of this low, circular room. Piles of coins, gems, jewels, and masterwork objet d’art fill the room.

It’s all here. And it’s all theirs.

Lucien stops on the steps, some sixty feet above the floor.  Reverently, he opens the urn holding Flint’s ashes.  He upends the urn, and the cloud of ashes drifts out over the chamber, scattering in a fine dusting over the heaping mounds of wealth.

The adventurers give Lucien his moment, some more respectfully than others, and then they make their way to the floor of the chamber.  There, Jhondal slumps into the gold, too weak to stand and thrusting his hands into the sea of wealth.  When he touches the gold, however, the adventurers get a nasty surprise. The piles of lucre are actually treasure golems—and they prepare to attack at once.

Once again, an artifact holds the answer: the pistol, which gives control over the work of human hands.

Ketham says that the golems are man-made, and Lucien concurs.

Rook raises the pistol of Harrimast, uttering a prayer pleading to Harrimast to rescue his companions—particularly his sister Romany.  He offers himself in exchange for them.  He pleads for their survival.  At the last minute, Harry shouts out that Rook is missing the mark…

 

“Too compassionate!  He’s not gonna care about that!”

-Old Mad Harry

 

“All right, goddammit…Give the gold!”

- Jonathan “Rook” Grey

 

 

…and the treasure golems become docile.  They are Rook’s to control.

 

 

Act II, Scene XLIV: Harry the God (Arrival +7 Hours)

So, the adventurers at long last have their treasure. And they might even persuade the treasure golems to climb up the shaft, drag themselves across the island, and load themselves onto the Sea Lion and Kraken’s Claw.

But first, they must face one final test.

As they turn to leave they find that Harry is now standing next to Lucien on the steps some sixty feet above the treasure chamber.  After he’s got the adventurers’ attention, he gives his spiel:

“Ye’ve been through much, me hearties, and I salute ye. But nobody goes forth on the waters without paying Harrimast his due. All I ask of ye is a promise—to answer me call if I need a job done in the world of men. One promise, and ye’ll be wealthy beyond an admiral’s dreams and ye’ll sleep well the rest of yer days. Refuse, and ye’ll never spend a copper of that haul in peace.”

The adventurers agree to a service in Harrimast’s name, again some more willingly than others.  But even when the adventurers do agree to Harry’s terms, it’s not that simple. The old coot gives a gap-toothed grin and softens his tone considerably. The gold is cursed, he says, but he can’t rightly remember how to lift it, nor how to send them home.

Yarash’s boys on the other side are a clever bunch,” he says. “When they worked their wicked business in Leudendorf, it were like a punch to me guts. For a few moments I forgot meself; I forgot my place in the order of things—me responsibilities. That’s how old Carthy got himself found by them. And that’s what afflicts me now!  They cut the rope that bound this body to the Heavens! I remember some things—how to wreck things, and how to curse ’em. But putting things right…curing the treasure…yar, that’s much tougher work, and that eludes Old Harry. If ye can put me in me right mind, I’ll fix you up and set ye windward.”

The answer is the final artifact: the hook of Harrimast. Romany gives the hook over to Kari, who focuses upon its power, puzzling the best way to invoke the might of the Sea God to cure Harry himself.  Finally, considering the need to appeal to the nature of the pirate god, she stalks up the stairs towards Harry.  She still wears Billy Bones coat.  Her hair is an intimidating mass from the march through the rain and the forest.  She is haggard but brimming with fury.  She berates Harry for his weakness, and she tells him that he will not forget, because he is a captain, and the captain will not forget his crew.  She focuses her emotion and her strength of will into the hook that she holds, and counts on all of that—and a lot of luck—to carry her through.

Harry listens to her tirade.  Stares at her as she shouts at him.  He brims with rage. 

In the moment that follows Kari’s last words, Harry speaks.  He says that he should smite Kari for her temerity…but, it worked.  He remembers.

Harry whispers a few words over the treasure, cleansing it.

Harry gives the PCs a final warning before: “You’ve got yerselves some powerful trinkets there, me hearties. But don’t forget you’re not the only ones who know about them. And them that know has plans for ‘em, mark me well. Ye may have need of them toys again real soon, so don’t let them out of your sights! And some of ye may die trying to defend what ye’ve taken here today. Let that gold fall through yer fingers while ye may—ye won’t have long to enjoy it.”

Lucien murmurs that he believes that the winds will now carry them home from Yarashad.  They have only to return to the ship.

It becomes clear that Harrimast is about to leave the adventurers.  Before he leaves, though, Ketham has one final question for the god of the sea.  The answer comes in the moment after Harrimast’s departure, his laughing, boastful voice booming from the air where he had stood.

 

“Can we sail your colors?”

-Ketham

 

Yar!”

-Harrimast

 

 

 

Act II, Scene XLV: Exeunt

The adventurers make their way out of the spire, and across the isle of Yarashad on the shoulders of the treasure golems.  Only a few coins remain, just those that had been dusted by the lazily floating ashes of Flint.  As they leave, Kari wishes the murdered gnome peace.

 

“Rest well, Flint.”

-Sakari Curtis