After the battle, Issander Korazane begins to carefully examine the magic circle and statue inside it. He nearly succumbs to madness as he crosses the threshold of the magic circle. He carefully pushes the statue out of the magic circle and begins to examine it.
Meanwhile, Leona Prax inspects the desk at the back of the room. There are piles of papers written in dwarvish but don’t seem to make sense. There’s a locked iron chest nearby and she opens it with the key on Narrak. It contains a jar of Keoghtom’s ointment (DMG page 179) and a small leather bag containing 45 gp and 15 sp. Harbeck Emberglow moves towards the other end of the room to guard against any unwanted visitors. He ends up discovering a shrieker, strategically placed near the room’s proper entrance that serves as an alarm.
Gerald Wolfway finds a second statue, this one with a more developed head. He checks it out and eventually finds a name written on the back of its neck: Rihuud. He accidentally touches the statue and it crumbles into dust. Issander Korazane moves the other statue out of the magic circle and begins investigating it. He discovers a lot of arcane, mad writing over the body and a name at the back of the neck: Dorhun. Luckily, the head is not fully formed and they believe they were able to interrupt the ritual before it could take effect.
The party follows Gerald Wolfway deeper into the Whorlstone Tunnels. After a steady upward climb, the tunnel opens into a huge, well-lit chamber. The glow of faerzress and bioluminescent fungi compete with shafts of white light that fall upon naturally formed shelves along the walls as well as a rocky mesa at the center of the cavern. Crudely formed ramps connect the different levels of the mesa up to the height of its two topmost tiers, which are linked by a sturdy bridge. Atop the far tier stands a 50-foot-tall obelisk made of smooth black metal with a few noticeable imperfections, as though small parts of it were somehow chipped away.
A female derro stands close to the obelisk, gently patting and stroking its surface. The obelisk flashes once, the glow of faerzress around the cavern flaring in response. The derro squeals with glee as she snatches an object up from the ground, then writes something down in a small notebook.
Meanwhile, on the Darklake
Alyndra Siannodel is making her way though the Darklake when she comes across Sloopidoop and a few merchants who just came from Gracklstugh. Sloopidoop introduces himself as a member of the society of brilliance and offers to teleport Alyndra Siannodel to Blingdenstone, where another society member, Skriss, is located. He casts the spell, and before he can do anything about it, he realizes something went wrong and says “not again.”
Back at the Obelisk
The party tries to sneak up on the derro when the obelisk flashes again, and out of the obelisk steps Alyndra Siannodel. The derro is startled and does what derro do: attack. The party joins in on the frey as does the derro’s friend, a spectator. At one point, Harbeck Emberglow casts a spell, triggering a reaction from the faerzress, the room flares up and a fireball explodes, centered on Harbeck. Another time, it responds to Pliinki’s (the derro) magic but doesn’t do anything immediately. The spectator turns its eye stalks towards Chen, who promptly turns in fear and runs out of the room. The party take down the spectator and later Pliinki, at which point, she is resurrected as a wood elf and continues fighting. She falls a second time and a minute later, Chen finally makes his way back to the room, declaring “nope, we weren’t being attacked from behind.”
Meeting with Bahadur
Gerald Wolfway makes his way towards the obelisk. Something is drawing him towards it. While staring into the obelisk, he reaches into a pocket and takes out the piece of black metal he found on Droki. He places it in his palm, looks deeply into one of the cracks on the obelisk and places it in like a puzzle piece. It fits well enough, and begins to melt and heal the obelisk and out comes a flask of smoke and fire.
When Gerald picks up the smoke bottle he is transported to another realm. Beside him is an elf woman shrouded in bright light (representing Dawnbringer’s sentience). The realm feels warm and has a gentle red glow and a booming voice speaks (Bahadur).
Do you remember our pact, the deal you made? Do you remember why you came down to the Underdark in the first place? You found what you were looking for and still haven’t realized it.
You are wasting your talents. The path of light is leading you astray.
Like a cloud being blown away, the bright light is sent away and dissipates.
Why did you deny my precious gifts. You were so close.
You do not need her anymore. We can be more powerful without her. More powerful than the Netheril Empire she came from. Use the gift I have given you. Do not forget the debt you owe me. Your life, your soul, belong to me. You know my gifts are not free.
To everyone else, they just see Gerald Wolfway pickup the bottle and Dawnbringer lights up so bright that it blinds everyone for a minute. Harbeck Emberglow walks over and picks up the sword hilt and holds onto it for safe keeping. The party, with one new member also trying to get to the surface, make their way out of the Whorlstone Tunnels for, hopefully, the final time.