The Envoys of Spark- A D&D Chronicle- Part XII

Roleplaying table top games make for great stories! The Envoys of Spark is a Dungeons and Dragons campaign created by Elyse T. Join hilarious and entertaining player characters on their voyage in an unknown world, as they try to accomplish an enigmatic mission.
The Envoys of Spark Chronicles are published every Monday! Check back for new adventures!

Check Out Part I of The Envoys of Spark

Check Out Part XI of The Envoys of Spark

 

Moral Implications

The Envoys followed the Governor of the Extinguishment Effort (E.E.) down a series of corridors, undercover as specialist mages. Somehow, they had to lose their constant escort get to the lower level of this Enshanee base. The underground complex was dug through an active volcano, where the magician Xelif, who had first conjured the eruption, was held captive.

The objective of the E.E. was to slowly render Xelif’s volcano dormant with ice magic, as it was an important obstacle for the Enshanee, who utilized the ocean routes surrounding it to conquer and govern the northern kingdoms. To accomplish the E.E., the Enshanee took the Juuls, a powerful mage society with no military, under it’s wing.

The heroes had no real intention of helping the Enshanees, headed by their king, Lord Duzuaac, whom the Envoys had been tasked to defeat. They wished to speak to Xelif and somehow help his volcano erupt once again.

The Governor opened large and beautifully decorated wooden doors, showing the group into a vast suite where at least sixty mages worked busily. Medea and Regor III, who still argued about the true identity of the real specialist among them, were introduced to many tired and stressed mages. Upon exploring a bit, Beatrice discovered that the families of the mages, spouses and children, also resided there; innocent souls that would be scarified if the volcano did manage to erupt.

The Envoys asked to be escorted back to their quarters for an opportunity to discuss, having no real idea what awaited them below. They discussed; the Juuls mages were exhausted, as though their work effort was more difficult than usual, many had been asleep, they worked in shift perpetually- perhaps Xelif was starting to win against them.

“This might be the right time to incite the mages to seek employers other than Enshane? If we can convince them that they could be sustainable on their own, they might all decide to leave! Beatrice said.

“ Who wants to live in a volcano anyway?” said Regor.

 

Improvisation

The group decided that splitting up might be the best way to get to the lower floor unnoticed. Kohmai decided at this moment to run out of the room and quickly accost a guard in the hallway:

“Excuse me, I am a mage, and the facilities in these quarters are inexcusable.”

“Eh wha?”The guard said, confused.

“I require soil, dirt, natural things. Not that water nonsense you people use.”

Faced with Kohmai’s large stature and blank determined expression, the guard acquiesced and admitted that only below, where the digging was still happening, would he find what he needed. He led Kohmai to what he explained was the special path for soldiers, when the main entrance, situated in the audience chamber, could not be used. The Governor was apparently holding a meeting with his captain and head mages, at the moment. Kohmai was shown to the private quarters of the Governor, where a secret passage led to the lower level.

Once down the stone steps, the soldier presented the “ice bridge” to Kohmai, an icy structure built and continuously frozen with magic by a small horde of frantic mages, above a flowing river of lava streaming out of the floor. The areas surrounding it consisted of rough dirt and stone. Kohmai picked up a handful and asked the guard to be led to a private place. Still confused, the guard nonetheless did as he was told, and even agreed to enter the small chamber when Kohmai feigned needing assistance. Kohmai deployed a blade from his lower arm and ran the guard through, making sure to avoid his clothing and not splatter it with blood.

In the corridor, Kohmai emerged with the guard’s uniform fitting him very tightly.

Meanwhile, Beatrice snuck out of the private specialist mages quarters, and was followed by the clumsy Medea who quickly ruined the hobbit’s attempt at sneaking. They were discovered by a passing guard and brought to the Governor’s audience chamber where a small council convened. The Governor was pleased that the mages were getting to work and welcomed them to use the passage to the lower level, accompanied by two soldiers, of course.

Virgil was not feeling well and decided to stay behind and keep and eye on the upper level, so Regor decided to make his exit through the quarter’s back door. There, he told a guard that someone was greatly sick in his quarters, and that he needed to go find his friends and make sure they were not infected by the same virus. In the meantime, Regor ordered this guard to fetch what was required to clean a disgusting mess, and snuck away on his floating chair as soon as the guard had turned his back.

 

Fire and Ice

The Envoys reached the lower levels and just had time to notice the strange ice bridge to the east, when they heard screams and agitation down a corridor to the west. The Enshanees present begged who they knew as specialists, to help them. In a recently dug area elevated above a pit where lava flowed abundantly, mages and solders fought against strange fiery creatures. Some looked like oversized burning arachnids, while others floated above the ground as ghosts of fire. On the floor, the corpses of Enshane and Juul burned vividly. The heroes realized that not helping in this desperate situation would mean blowing their cover, and had no choice but to help dispatch of the volcano’s defences.

Soon, the mages worked again at building and endlessly maintaining thin walls of ice. Kohmai, in his disguise, managed to appear as the group’s soldier escort and led them away from the scene. They headed back to the ice bridge, wondering if the captive they sought might be on the other side, but were sidetracked along the way.

The heroes came upon a small, unguarded, prison hold, where a few labourers had been imprisoned for mild or unfair reasons. Medea used her Etching of Truth, and discovered that none of them had any true malice in their hearts. She asked Beatrice to tease the locks and set them free.

A last prisoner was a bit more difficult to read, he said: “Down under, mountain fights for freedom. You, knifes in the back of the king, you will stop the cold?”

The Envoys were unsure if they should kill or free the strange prisoner, he seemed to know too much. Close inspection revealed that he wore ragged and torn mage robes, and had been badly burned on his arms and face.

“We…want to set the volcano free.” Medea carefully admitted. The deranged mage seemed pleased by this answer.

“Mountain can be unleashed, when the mages look elsewhere,” he said as Beatrice unlocked the door of his cell. “Secrets of Spark will not be detrayed.”

Medea believed the strange man to be genuine and instructed him to stay hidden and get ready to flee.

 

Xelif the Volcano

They left the prison area and finally found the ice bridge again, which they crossed without problems. A group of guards, who had not come to help the burning mages and soldiers in the western corridors, were guarding a large door on the other side, clearly something important.

Medea and Regor attacked the guards with rhetoric, claiming that the Governor had requested their presence in the next room. With enough convincing, they even managed to get all soldiers to exit the room, giving them privacy with whatever awaited inside.

On a dais at the end of a large room, surrounded by magical walls of ice that seemed to be slowly melting, rested Xelif. The man was about eight feet tall, with a build as tough as a mountain. His was skin made of blackened stone, with fiery hints of a molten interior at his joints. Xelif’s eyes glowed with apprehension as he saw the Envoys approach.

“We are the Envoys of Spark,” said Beatrice after making sure that no one was within earshot, “we know that you were fighting Enshane back with an Etching.”

“If you are here,” Xelif said with contemplation, “then Duzuaac has found his catalyst. He may not yet have enough Etchings, but he is halfway to bringing about the Sea of Stars.”

“Spark didn’t leave much about that, please, what is the Sea of Stars?” Medea asked.

“The Sea of Stars is when Ocean will meet Sky without distinction. The Above will become the same as the Below, Flight will be the same as Swim”

“Oh great,” said Regor, “more riddles.”

“The Etchings were a great discovery of Spark, but he only realized too late that too much power drawn through the Etchings is dangerous to our world, to reality itself. In the wrong hands, it could mean ending the world as we know it.”

“Where is Duzuaac now?” Kohmai asked.

“He was able to pass through these waters about ten years ago, and has moved his armies to Dunnri, who I suspect without the protection of my volcano, were not capable of countering Duzuaac and the Juul’s magic. You must help me erupt again!”

“We understand,” said Beatrice, “but we need to warn people somehow so they can evacuate. How will we get out ourselves?”

“There is a passage that leads outside, south of here. First, make the mages stop maintaining their walls. When the ground begins rumbling, you will know you have about an hour before the eruption begins.”

They thanked Xelif and promised to help however they could. Medea pretended to loudly intimidate Xelif to trick the Enshanee soldiers in the hallway, as they exited.

“Haha, thanks to me, he is weakening in power!” she exclaimed.

“No No,” Regor said patronizingly, “my mere presence has him almost defeated!”

Beatrice took advantage of the distraction to approach the mages who were magically feeding the ice bridge. She asked one about his work conditions, and if he was happy. With a great deal of imagery, she described all the possibilities of taking contracts with other nations, aside of Enshane, could bring such talented mages as the Juuls. The mage seemed intrigued, but was all the more convinced, when the much more urgent possibility of the volcano’s eruption was carefully mentioned.

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