Zarantyr 9, 1001 YK
The Eclipse Collective finds Marlamin Tarmikos in the Menechtarun desert. Apparently, he has killed ten angels and sealed the power of his arm. He rejoins the party.
Since their guide died in Fernia, the Eclipse Collective decides to return to Thri-Kal to hire a new thri-kreen guide. After another short chase they re-enter the city. They are told the best guide is locked on the top floor of the prison tower (the one Iadoes briefly tortured previously), so Adran, Namfoodle, and Marlamin go to retrieve him. Marlamin acts as a distraction and kills seven of the eight Sulatar stationed there before Jevan Ssambra is summoned. Meanwhile, Adran and Namfoodle retrieve the prisoner. Not wanting to deal with Jevan, Adran teleports himself and the thri-kreen to a nearby rooftop. Marlamin flees Jevan after a short duel, leaving Namfoodle to sneak out and slide down the tower’s wall with a crowbar.
Back at the hidden temple, Namfoodle is healed of his nerve damage but the party does not want to hire the wounded thri-kreen as a guide. Iadoes hires a mediocre guide instead, and pays him way too much. He gets lost and is recovered from a mindcotton den while the rest of the party sleeps.
Zarantyr 10, 1001 YK
The next morning the party decides to pursue a heavily-armoured Sulatar airship that is leaving Thri-Kal. On the way, the airship goes down when Iadoes gets distracted and Adran cannot recover control in time. The fire elemental that powers the ship is briefly lost before Xulgos somehow manages to intimidate it back to its post.
They resume the chase to find the Sulatar airship in the caldera of a volcano next to an old Age of Giants-era tower. They lower the ship to drop Xulgos, Namfoodle, and Marlamin (the latter on nightmare-back) into the tower. Namfoodle arrives first with a masterful leap to find Jevan Ssambra transcribing a spell written on the walls (one third of the giant artifact spell the Sulatar are trying to recover). He tries to kick the slate out of her hand but is banished first to a misty realm, and then to Fernia. Xulgos misses the jump completely while the ship is strafing, but Marlamin recovers him and they arrive soon after. While the airship is taking evasive action, Iadoes bends luck with wild magic resulting in a surge, causing the moonlight in the area to inspire lecherousness.
When Marlamin and Xulgos arrive in the tower, Marlamin tries to destroy the section of the wall containing part of the spell not yet transcribed, but is repeatedly blown back by fire magic. At one point the roof is damaged, causing the moonlight to affect Jhulae. She offers a concubine position for Marlamin, which he accepts to try and knock the slate out of her hand. He fails, the spell finishes transcribing, and Xulgos shoots her. Marlamin knocks her trademark chalice out of her hand but only after she drinks from it. She teleports away somewhere as a result. Marlamin collects the chalice and flies away with Xulgos. Jhulae arrives on Fernia near Namfoodle, where she claims they are trapped together.
Derli’s Pilgrimage: After stepping through the mirror Derli finds himself in the company of a spiteful grey dragon named Tezoth the Hungry. In exchange for his own life, Derli offers the lives of Prax and Tethris. Tezoth agrees and Derli sends them through. Tethris re-emerges a short time later, with his arm and a portion of his torso dissolved by some sort of corrosive sludge. He tells Derli that he has slain Tezoth, but Prax is dead and that the dwarf should go back through the mirror. Derli is skeptical, but Tethris tells him that all he wants now is to watch Derli get to the Face of Eberron and be torn apart by powerful dragons. Derli eventually goes through to find himself indeed closer to his destination. Tethris finishes burying Prax with some awkward help by Derli. The two of them then leave Tezoth’s cave, covered as it is in scorch marks, caustic slime, and the bodies of other unfortunate adventurers and dragons, not to mention Tezoth himself.
Secondary Character: Derli d’Kundarak
Zaranytr 9, 1001 YK
When the Phoenix Eclipse emerges from Fernia into Menechtarun, they find themselves over a small ruin. The area around it is littered with bodies and skeletons that look to be fallen undead. Standing among the fallen is none other than Marlamin Tarmikos, whom Xulgos recognizes. They land the airship nearby and approach, and learn that Marlamin has come here to slay the last of the ten angels he needed to seal the corrupting power of his cursed arm. He rejoins them immediately.
As their thri-kreen guide died when the Phoenix Eclipse went down outside the City of Brass, they decide to return to Thri-Kal to hire a new guide. Another short chase ensues with Iadoes and Xulgos on one firesled, Adran and Namfoodle on another, and Marlamin riding his nightmare. Adran manages to fly the sled out of the view of the Sulatar, but the others must first slay their pursuers before arriving at the hidden temple (and headquarters of the small thri-kreen resistance). Here they meet with the priest who held that post before the recently-deceased guide, an older thri-kreen who tells them that their best guide is the one locked in the prison tower. He offers Namfoodle healing for his nerve damage sustained during the Ring of Fire if they retrieve the imprisoned thri-kreen. Most of the party agrees, though Xulgos remains behind with Iadoes.
Meanwhile, Adran and Namfoodle fly on the firesled to the prison tower. Marlamin arrives soon after astride his nightmare, causing a distraction as the terribly intimidating blackguard touches down. He threatens the Sulatar, causing them to attack. He cuts them down one by one, laughing at their feeble attempts to injure him. His dense armour shields him from their physical blows, and the nightmare protects him from their fire magic. At the same time, Adran and Namfoodle kill the guard of the top-floor cell and they locate the thri-kreen, who has made himself invisible by replicating Iadoes’ spell. As they start to bring him out, one of the desperate Sulatar fighting Marlamin above summons Jevan Ssambra, who immediately challenges Marlamin to a duel. Apparently they have dueled in this way before.
Adran teleports away with the injured thri-kreen to a nearby rooftop. Marlamin flees from Jevan on his nightmare, but tells the drow that “it is not over.” Namfoodle cloaks himself in shadow and silence with monk disciplines, and tries climbing down the outside wall. He falls, but regains his balance just long enough to slide down with a crowbar embedded in the wall in dead silence due to his ki powers. There is now a deep groove in the tower. It will always be there.
Namfoodle receives his healing but the party decides not to take the wounded thri-kreen as a guide. Iadoes hires a mediocre guide instead, and then has to locate him after paying him 12 platinum pieces and leaving him to his own devices. While disguised as a Sulatar drow, he discovers the thri-kreen in a mindcotton den, and pulls him back to the Phoenix Eclipse with a group of mind-controlled Sulatar as escorts.
Zarantyr 10, 1001 YK
The rest of the party sleeps at the temple before leaving the next day, only to find a bronze mithral-coated Sulatar airship leaving the city. They pursue, but Iadoes is distracted from piloting mid-flight and leaves his post. Adran struggles to recover, but the ship is grounded, and the bound fire elemental manages to escape. With a hovering, eye ray-filled display, he intimidates the barely-sentient elemental into going back to the ship, and they resume their course.
Now delayed, they arrive at a volcano in the south, where an old giant-built tower stands in the caldera. They descend with the Phoenix Eclipse, which sustains some damage from the magical fire in the volcano and the fire-cannons being shot from the Sulatar airship hovering next to the tower. Xulgos and Namfoodle jump from the ship’s cargo bay to the tower, though the constant strafing causes Xulgos to land considerably off-course (while Namfoodle slides perfectly into the tower). Marlamin descends on his nightmare and picks up Xulgos. The two of them destroy some firesleds en route to the tower. Meanwhile, Iadoes bends luck with his magic to avoid the Phoenix Eclipse being hit, and in doing so triggers a wild magic surge that causes what little moonlight reaches the volcano to inspire lecherousness and debauchery.
In the tower’s top floor, Namfoodle encounters Jhulae Ssambra. She is holding a magical tablet which is inscribing in itself a copy of the writing etched across the walls of the chamber. It is, she claims, one third of a spell called Firebring. Namfoodle attempts to kick the tablet out of her hand, but she pours some of the contents of her chalice on him, banishing him to another plane full of mist. He stumbles out of it to end up back in Fernia, in the middle of some ash fields. Soon after, Marlamin and Xulgos arrive. She watches with amusement as Marlamin repeatedly drives his sword into the wall, attempting to ruin the carved writing before the slate can copy it, but fire magic blows him back each time. On the third attempt, the roof is cracked, allowing the enchanted moonlight to seep down onto Jhulae. She offers to spare Marlamin if he becomes her concubine, which he accepts. He steps closer to her and tries to knock the slate out of her hand, but she pulls it back and threatens to banish him as well. At this point, the copy on the slate is complete, and she prepares to drink from her chalice. Xulgos shoots her, and Marlamin tries to knock the chalice out of her hand. He succeeds, but only after she has taken a drink from it. She is whisked away as the chalice spills to the floor.
He picks it up and with Xulgos dashes to the rooftop to mount the nightmare, just in time to escape the negative energy cannon fired by the Sulatar airship, which destroys the top floor of the tower. Protected by some sort of fire shield, the Sulatar airship rises out of the volcano and flies away. On the nightmare’s back, Marlamin and Xulgos return to the Phoenix Eclipse landed in a clear area nearby. Back in Fernia, Namfoodle sees Jhulae appear next to him. She tells him they are “trapped here together.”