Episode Sixteen - Breaking Point
Episode Sixteen: Breaking Point (Level 9)
Vash, Tobias, Icthtaca, and Abasi arrive back in Forteth, with Thoelerran Mollathe still in tow, bound and gagged. The mob prince is unhappy, but the group have no time to cater to his needs. They find Father Othemarrel and his operatives under siege by military police, and quickly move to help them eliminate the threat. When the soldiers have been dealt with, the Avans leave the sewers, telling their friends that they are headed for a linen shop in the uptown market. Before they leave, the Avans fill them in on current events in Forteth.
The city is at war with itself. Duke-Regent Bergeth has publically blamed the mafia for the king’s apparent death, though his true reason for moving against them is much simpler. He has found the evidence Tobias, Vash, and Carmenith planted in his office, and he thinks the Mollathe have betrayed him. Before he can take his war to the world, he needs to secure bases here at home. His troops are assaulting the Mollathe lair under Crisis Monument Park, hoping to seize the weapons and un-activated warforged stockpiled there. The Mollathe have activated hundreds of warforged soldiers to defend themselves, and the streets are in chaos.
Meanwhile, starting with the few men the heroes told, word is spreading through the army that not only is young King Halden Thandemar alive, but that he was betrayed by his uncle, the regent. Loyalists are turning against the duke’s supporters in the army, and although outnumbered, entire regiments are falling into battle with themselves. Other units have delayed debate, working with the city guard to handle the riots and fires that are breaking out all over the city.
Magistrate Caral Viln is now the Chorrom, and although the Avans don’t know many details, and aren’t sure how this transpired, they thank the heroes for their role in the untimely demise of Arch-Chancellor Baledessar Galen, the assassination target Vash previously talked them out of killing. Although the heroes last saw Galen wresting with Magistrate Viln and the Mottan Arch-Chancellor Salomor Zoterra in a font of sacrificial blood, they happily give credit for the kill to Abasi, hoping to elevate his standing with his order. A rather abashed Abasi is congratulated by the assassins among the enclave, who worked hard to gain the intelligence that lead to approval for the assassination.
Also, though the city isn’t generally aware of it, the Avans inform the group that the prison has been taken over entirely by the eitharmos , and that they are openly using it as a base as they scour the city, the Avans assume, in search for Abasi, Ichtaca, and their companions. The heroes realize that Jodram Zabir Ouleithe’s men are scouring the city for them, and promise to be cautious.
The Avans plan to take advantage of the confusion and openly stalk the city for a time, scouring home to home for refugees and other good folk in need of rescue. The groups part ways, both headed for action.
Cátzin approaches them, finding them with strange efficiency, as if she knew exactly where they were. She takes Ichtaca aside, and tells him that the ambassadors (except Ambassador Vitali, who is gone) are virtual prisoners in the palace, supposedly for their own safety, but that she fears the Duke-Regent’s intentions are violent in nature. She asks him for his help in rescuing them, and, concerned for ambassador Losoran and the others, the party agrees to split. Vash, Tobias, and Abasi go looking for King Halden, but find him gone, with only a note left behind. The note states that he has received too many supporters to hide her any longer, and that the time has come to re-take his city and his throne. At this point, the furious Thoelerran becomes both a hindrance and a threat to the other three men. He threatens them, then tries to run, and Vash is forced to tackle him. They take the spoiled mafia-prince to the same sleazy in where they once interrogated Carmenith, intending to bribe the corrupt innkeeper there to hold him for them.
Unfortunately, the man is paying protection money to the mob, and is terrified to defy them. Even when intimidated, he demands a ridiculous sum for any help. A fight breaks out, and in the chaos, Thoelerran nearly escapes. Abasi grabs him, tossing him through a window, and Thoelerran turns to flee. Vash fires, shooting him in the leg, but he runs right into the hands of a military patrol, scouring the city for mafia thugs. They fall upon him and kill him, then charge into the bar, while the heroes escape out the back.
Certain that the Mollathe family hold the clues to finding Lyda and Carmenith, they go back into the sewers and below, to the Mollathe warforged manufactory under Crisis Monument Park.
Explosions, gunfire, and the clash of swords ring out from above, where a battle rages between the military and the mafia. The Mollathe have activated several units of warforged soldiers to aid them, and are holding their own against the military, and the neighborhoods all around the park are a war zone. Below, the factory is ablaze, dwarven slaves chained to their assembly lines and left to die. The heroes spring into action, controlling the flames long enough to save the slaves. The dwarves arm themselves heavily with the firearms stockpiled here, and head out into the streets to find the Avans at the linen shop, and hopefully be returned home, to Ykhel.
The men now rush to the Smithworks Shipyard and Refinery on the south side of town. They manage to avoid the various factions warring in the streets, and find themselves meeting with Yaelchath Mollathe, and his three remaining sons, Hochorrin, Rodellayer, and Gaurrestar. It’s a trap! Yaelchath is furious at the reports of what happened in the prison, and at the suspicious fact that Thoelerran has not returned with them. The Mollathe, besieged by the duke, and desperate for allies, have apparently allied themselves with their formal rivals, the Souliaydach and Gumayr, and try to kill the heroes where they stand.
In a quick, lethal display of weaponry, martial arts, and psionic combat, Vash, Abasi, and Tobias lay waste to the Mollathe family and their crew, leaving only Yaelchath alive, barely breathing, to tell them the significance of the clues they’ve gathered. He tells them what they want to know, then dies. The mafia built and owns the fine town-houses along the street facing the Smithworks, and rents them to tenants who want no questions asked. Further, they keep secret tunnels from the factory to each home, which the tenants do not know about. Vash scours the factory and finds the secret door to the tunnels, and Tobias guides them towards Lyda, his connection with her leading him unerringly through the branching tunnels.
They arrive, listening at the door, just as Ambassador Sansochin Vitali is leaving for the night, a serial killer off to stalk the streets in search of prey. Chorrom Dythan Mathis is gone, off on business. Anotros Bartoli Ciprano, chafing under the strictures of Mathis and Vitali, gleefuly takes advantage of his stewardship, opening the door to where the women are held, with sickening intentions.
The men storm into the basement lair, just as Ciprano is tearing at Lyda’s blouse. Tobias rips him off of the woman he loves, flinging him across the room with the force of his mind, and slamming him against the wall, his chest partially collapsed from the sheer psionic force. Vash follows through with his hammer, slamming it into the wall beside Ciprano, but leaving the man alive to question. Tobias embraces Lyda, and they share a passionate kiss and a touching reunion. Vash revives Carmenith, who had been tortured by the eitharmos before Mathis acquired her, and is badly wounded, since Mathis has been preventing Lyda from using any of her powers.Vash grimly turns towards the wheezing Ciprano, determined to get answers from the man. He only laughs at him, enjoying his own pain. A strange glimmering in the air, surrounded by glowing sigils, draws the attention of Tobias. As he examines it, Chorrom Dythan Mathis arrives, and a desperate fight begins. The heroes are terribly outmatched, and they quickly realize it. Tobias tries to hold him off, begging his friends to run, but they stand by him. Mathis dominates Tobias’s body, forcing him to choke Lyda, while the ghostly Chorrom taunts the woman, invoking memories of Tobias’s previous forced assault on the train to Forteth. She refuses to believe Dythan’s lies, prying at Tobias’s fingers on her throat even as she tells him she knows it was never him, that he would never harm her. Mathis unleashes a wave of punishing psionic energy, forcing Vash and Abasi to their knees, and demanding that they worship him. Vash struggles against it, striking Tobias away from Lyda, knocking his friend senseless for a moment, but ending the domination. Lyda runs to Tobias, healing him, helping him to stand, and he moves again to confront Mathis.
Mathis, seeing that Tobias is now near the shimmering magic of the ritual he has prepared, begins a fell chant, drawing the psion towards the light, where tendrils of magic begin to enfold him. He begins to fade. Lyda screams, runs towards him, and knocks him out of the magical trap. She is enveloped in the light, and vanishes. Tobias howls his fury at the ghostly Mathis, and lashes out at him with deadly force, but Mathis unleashes a wave of magic again, and all three men are knocked senseless on the floor, unconscious.
Sewer Combat Encounter: 1,500 xp
Navigating the city: 50 xp
Thoelerran’s death: 50 xp
Saving the dwarven slaves: 200 xp
Activating the warforged under Tobias’s command: 50 xp
Unleashing a unit of warforged soldiers on the King’s enemies: 50 xp
Blowing up Crisis Monument Park & dozens of military police and mafia fighting in it: 200 xp
Mollathe Family Story-mode Combat Encounter: 500 xp
Ciprano and Mathis Story-mode Combat Encounter: 500 xp
Rescuing Carmenith and Lyda: 200 xp
Roleplay with Lyda: 50 xp
Roleplay with Mathis: 50 xp
Total XP is 3,400, divided by 3 pc’s, is 1,133 each. Previous cumulative individual total was 17,795, and is now 18,928.
Vash found a cask of money, 300 GP in local currency.
Abasi found papers and maps, indicating where the Mollathe have shipped weaponry and crates of warforged, at various outposts from Forteth to the Norlythe border
Tobias found 32 warforged soldiers, who are currently in combat in the civil war, but may survive to obey his every command.