Zarantyr 25, 1000 YK
The demonic orcs, corrupt Jhorash’tar called “tanarukks,” manifest their dark powers, one shifting into molten metal and another catching aflame before the battle begins. The fight is over relatively quickly despite the tanarukks’ self-resurrection abilities. Tam’elanath uses a number of his ice arrows after learning of the tanarukks’ vulnerability to them.
The sounds of combat draws the attention of more orcs further within, but they are stopped before they can reach the party by a number of barrels dropped from the ceiling, exploding with alchemical frost. Dwarves repel from above and introduce themselves as Droranathhold’s resistance force, led by Jark Droranath. The dwarves and the party take a moment to discuss the situation, and it is revealed that a stranger arrived recently, acting as an adviser of some kind to Durnnam Droranath. Not long after, the corrupt orcs showed up and took over, with the shield guard seeming to vanish entirely.
They make a plan to investigate the matter by searching the Shieldhall, the fortress at the far end of the cavern that acts as the patriarch’s home. It is heavily protected, the only area in the hold the tanarukks actively guard. After returning Rumham to the Phoenix Eclipse, they sneak through the hold, narrowly avoiding detection, to arrive at the fortress exterior. Once there, they create a distraction using images conjured by Tam’elanath’s mastery over his dragonmark, and careful commanding of the dwarves on the part of Zil’dejin. Conlon uses his thought phantom veiled with a cloak to carry him into the hall in the guise of a prisoner, while Xulgos sneaks in.
Once inside, the remaining tanarukks are dealt with, and the party enters. The interior is largely empty. After searching for some time, Conlon and Zil’dejin are sucked into a demiplane by powerful wards, but they discover the murdered body of the real Durnnam Droraranath. In the demiplane, both prisoners strike a deal with the one who put them there. Conlon is granted freedom in exchange for the two large Khyber shards in the Eclipse Keep, and is possessed by a balor as “insurance.” Zil’dejin is given the same on the grounds that he will fight their captor to the death, and his face is thus branded with the Mark of War, an aberrant dragonmark, so that he may be easily found.
Conlon makes another deal, now with Eltimar, to protect him from the repercussions of the other deal he has just made. Eltimar agrees, provided Conlon kills an entity known as the “Devilslayer,” rumoured to be in the vicinity of Frostmantle. After bringing the corpse of Durnnam to Torlan Mroranon, and discovering the impostor is missing, the party decides they will head to Frostmantle and return to Krona Peak in the morning for the next Iron Council meeting.
Experience Gained: 4800 (2800 from combat, 2000 from skill challenge)