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Session #44: A lesson in Fey creatures
When Lena found out the shocking truth about her father, she flew to the canopy above the elvish community to be alone. Irthir, more concerned with all of the knowledge these people had to offer, accompanied the group of Wild Elves tasked with trapping the Devil to the library. Igan, who did not see which direction Lena had gone, took off into the Feywild to look for her. Sklooh decided to mingle with the elves because he knew he could not pursue Lena even if he wanted to.
The Wild Elves took Irthir to a shimmering pond of glowing red, translucent liquid. After pouring the water out of his wine-skin (which had now, for some reason, taken on a vibrant green color), he filled it with a bit of the pond. The elves began singing and waving their arms about in a mesmerizing fashion and the pond began to move around the group. Keeping close, Irthir followed the elves down into a small structure at the bottom of the pond -- the library. Once inside, Irthir beheld scrolls covering the walls and a few unraveled on the floor being studied by two Aquatic Elves and a Wood Elf. The Wild Elves he had come with took a scroll from the wall and began reading through it. Though Irthir recognized some of the infernal sigils, he could not read with them because he could not decipher the Elvish language.
Irthir asked the Wild Elves for scrolls on Tar'ok, and the Wild Elves said that he was welcome to look for it himself, but they were busy with their own task. Irthir looked through the library, unable to make sense of any of the foreign language, so he absentmindedly opened the door to depart. In gushed a torrent of the vibrant red liquid -- Irthir had forgotten they were underwater. He closed the door as quickly as possible and he and the elves cleaned up the mess he had made. In order to keep him busy, one of the Wild Elves relented, sighed, and looked through the library for the scroll Irthir desired. Once it was in his possession, however, he was no closer to reading it. Irthir ventured to disrupt the Wood Elf sitting on the floor in intense study. Irthir asked if the Wood Elf would assist in translating; the elf turned away from his own scrolls and began reading quietly, sharing information with Irthir.
Meanwhile, Igan scanned the canopy for his adopted-daughter and ward. A bit of movement caught his eye -- flapping wings in the trees. Focusing on the movement, Igan discovered that it was not Lena he had come upon, but a vicious beast with the body of an eagle, the maw of a dire wolf, and the horns of a stag, called a Peryton -- a creature that both sustains itself and reproduces by eating the hearts of humanoid creatures. The Peryton attacked Igan, diving and swiping at him with its talons. On one fly-by, Igan managed to take hold of the creature. Unfortunately, he underestimated the strength of the beast, and it swiftly took control of the situation by rising into the air with Igan in tow. Igan fought back with a series of headbutts and with a spiritual war-hammer while the Peryton hoisted him higher and higher, all the while goring him. Once a sufficient height had been reached, the Fey-bird released Igan to plummet to his death, but Igan barely managed to grab hold of the wing of the Peryton, causing them both to enter a death-spiral towards the ground. Keeping it from flying away, Igan grappled it all the way to the ground where they both impacted painfully. Igan stood up, assessing the damage, and realized that while he had only barely survived the fall, the Peryton was dead. Igan healed himself by magic and proceeded to bathe himself in the blue blood of his attacker and ripped out both of its hearts form its chest.
Sklooh's day was far less perilous thus far. Visiting structure after structure, he fascinated himself by the elves' magics and singing. With wine in claw Sklooh came to a Sun Elf singing a strange creature out of one of the many trees in the area. A female form of intense beauty emerged, formed out of wood and leaves and glistening dew. The Sun Elf conversed with the driad in elvish as Sklooh watched, and when it took notice of the hulking Lizardman, it became skittish and hid from view. The Sun Elf bid it retreat back into its tree, and began singing a change into the bark. Sklooh interrupted, however, causing the Sun Elf to cease his song and implore Sklooh not to disturb the driad.
At about this time, Lena had composed herself enough to seek out Sklooh's companionship. Seeing him down below conversing with an elf, Lena descended. Upon her arrival, the Sun Elf bowed and apologized for the revelation she had received at the council. He told her that his elder was trying to protect her from that knowledge and the burden that came with it. Nevertheless, he offered Lena consolation and comfort to the best of his ability, offering to break the orders of the Wild Elf elder if she wanted to discuss the matter personally. He introduced himself as Sai and offered to entertain and host her companions for the evening. When Lena asked where Igan and Irthir had gone, Sklooh shrugged and Sai announced that he saw Irthir leaving the council with a small group of Wild Elves and that Igan had gone alone into the woods. When Sklooh and Lena elected to go search for him, Sai warned them that the woods were dangerous in general, but in the Feywild, they can be even more so.
Igan wandered about aimlessly, more or less keeping track of where he had gone, but staying vigilant for Lena. Igan could keep silent no longer as a satyr had been conspicuously following him for the last few hours. He addressed the creature and asked what it wanted, causing it to jump with surprise and tumble over before darting behind a tree for cover. A few words were exchanged, and clearly the satyr wanted something from Igan, but in Igan's attempts to find out, he only succeeded in intimidating the creature. It took to "hiding" once more and continued to follow the cleric at a distance.
Lena and Sklooh encountered their own mysterious creature. As they called out for Igan, they saw a figure in the woods that looked exactly like him. Fortunately, Lena's perpetual skepticism and magical acuity led her to deduce that it was not Igan at all, but some mischievous creature masquerading as her adopted father. Sklooh engaged the creature at Lena's suggestion, but was shocked when he took a strange psychic damage. Sklooh ran up to destroy the creature, and after one good swipe at it, the impostor vanished.
Back in the library, the Wood Elf revealed to Irthir that a total of seven pieces had broken off of Tar'ok. Up until this moment, Irthir had only known of five. The elf described the original landing sites of the shards and what had happened to them since then. The shard that was present here (that Irthir had already encountered) was called Azurite and is under the protection of the Wild Elves and the Green Elves. The piece of rock that Lena, Igan, and Sklooh had described to him was called Bismuth and had been broken apart by a Kenku tribe and scattered about -- a bit of it, Lena admitted, had been taken from her in Telor by Artel. The scroll described that a small shard had landed nearby Tar'ok itself and had been moved into close proximity by the Moon Elves. When the Moon Elves left the mountain to the new Telorians, they were compelled to leave behind what had become known as Metorin due to the small cult following that had arisen around it by the Arakokra and local Kenku, as well as the leadership of Telor. Three other shards of Tar'ok were guarded by the elf tribes: the Merfolk guarded Cuvitriol in the sea, the Drow kept Munwo in the underdark of the mountains, and the Grey Elves possessed a shard referred to as Aluminica in the frigid north. The final piece described, which had landed the farthest from Tar'ok, was retrieved and carried about by a roaming herd of centaur. They called their piece Zino.
Satisfied with the new information and not wanting to distract his translator any longer, Irthir asked to be excused. Looking over at the Wild Elves he had come with, they were still deep in their studies, drafting what looked like a magical scroll. The Wood Elf told Irthir that he would keep the pond from spilling in, but he'd have to swim to the surface. As Irthir had seen one of the Merfolk do, when the door was opened and the liquid held at bay (which had now turned from a bright red to more of a purple color), Irthir leaped into the water and swam effortlessly up to the surface edge of the pond. He shook himself off and went back to the council area, climbed the tree up to the grotto where Azurite resided, and confronted the Wild Elves who guarded it. Irthir desired to chip off a piece of the boulder, but the guards refused to let him. Detecting their thoughts and attempting to beguile them, Irthir pleaded for just a bit of Azurite to take away for study. The elves said that it would be granted if they received permission from their elder. Irthir, not inclined to confront him, sat and waited in the grotto with Azurite and the elves for the rest of the evening.
After a long time of wandering around the forest, Lena and Sklooh finally came upon Igan -- the real Igan this time. They shared their experiences of the strange creatures they'd encountered, including the Peryton, the Satyr, and the strange doppelganger, when suddenly Sklooh felt an invisible hand rest upon his back. A creature became visible -- a old, crone-looking haggard woman with green skin. A hag. Sklooh became cursed by the woman, and just as the party made to retaliate, both Igan and Lena felt the touch of two more who had joined the fray. A hag coven. A battle began in which celestial warriors were summoned, curses were broken, and all manner of combat ensued. Eventually, one hag was felled, one flew into the woods, and one was under Lena's magical control and was compelled to lead the Pillarmen back to the elves' society.
Upon approach, a fire erupted forth which consumed the hag. Then a lightning bolt after that. Sai came forward from the borders of the elvish village and assaulted the hag. The Pillarmen joined in taking care of this last witch with the elf. Sai wondered why they would allow themselves to walk with such an evil creature, but nevertheless expressed gratitude at having broken up a hag's coven so close to their borders. The three of them followed Sai back to his home and prepared themselves for dinner and sleep... and tomorrow when the council would be reconvened.