Episode 3 – Sidetracked to the Underworld

Maximoff, Carlos, Harlock, and Marik were looking over the documents stolen from Rathess and found something odd about the notes about Deathlord invasion plan. It did not have any plans for moving into the city, it is as though the invaders planned to suddenly appear in Lookshy. They were puzzled by this and noticed that Bravo was taking a lot of time to catch up with them. Shortly after they heard loud noises coming from Rathess and saw a few flight artifacts launch into the sky. Figuring something might have happened to Bravo, the rest of the party decided to flee the area. Because of the aerial scouts Carlos decided against fleeing via giant magical chariot. Harlock lead the party safely through the forest, but when night began to fall Maximoff noticed the scouts had begun to turn back. At the same time Marik felt that they were surrounded by death and might have wandered into a shadowland.

Despite the risks of going into the Underworld, it was the perfect way to avoid being found by the scouts. They pressed forward through the shadowland and entered the Underworld, it was a very different place from Creation. Carlos, Maximoff, and Harlock immediately felt the effects as their essence regeneration changed. They carefully pressed on and reached a small village of spirits called Lavender. Marik grabbed the first ghost he could find and began to interrogate him and asked who was in charge around here. The poor ghost directed him to the church where a Father Gerrard acts as mayor of the town. Marik knocked down the door and began browbeating the priest, who thought he was an Abyssal working for Corpse Stitcher Joshua.

Marik was intrigued by the presence of an nearby Abyssal to kill and pressed the father for more info. He learned that an Abyssal residing in a tower outside the village was terrorizing the village occasionally and dragging residents back for materials. The rest of the party eager to not spend more time in the Underworld than necessary asked him where the nearest way back to Creation was. Gerrard wasn’t sure, but said that the archives in the tower might contain such info. Having gathered all the information they needed, Marik punched the priest’s head off, tied a rope to it and attached it to his belt in case he had further questions.

The party rested until morning in the village before heading out to the tower. At the end of the road they found a large gray and black jagged tower with a few zombies with swords stitched to their arms by entrance. They were easily able to dispatch the undead and Carlos picked the lock on the door. Inside there was a simple room with a desk, some bookshelves and a staircase spiraling along the wall leading up to higher floors. Maximoff checked the bookshelves for any interesting books and found mostly books on anatomy, the undead, and surgery, while Carlos checked the documents on the desk and found order forms detailing zombies constructed and delivered. Most of the orders came from the Forsaken Lion.

The party proceeded to the next floor and found many zombies similar to the ones outside grouped together in several cages. They proceeded to higher floors and found different types of stitched together zombies caged up on each floor. They finally reached the second highest floor which had a few giant, burly zombies. Carlos, Harlock, and Maximoff stealthily peered up to the next floor and saw a cloaked man at a table with several more tables around the room with bodies on them. They began discussing an angle of attack when the cloaked man shouted, “I know you’re there. Come out.” Marik opted to come out on his own to try and hide the party’s numbers. The two of them exchanged banter and insults, the usual for two Abyssals meeting for the first time, while keeping his attention on him so Carlos and Maximoff could sneak into the room. Carlos ducked under one of the tables with a body on it and tried to stab the zombie in case it was planning to get up later. This didn’t go as well as hoped when it let out a pained scream and combat began.

Corpse Stitcher Joshua made the first move by snapping his fingers and summoned a large stitched together suit of armor from Elsewhere. He leapt into the air and black tendrils pulled the armor on to him. Marik who had been waiting for this to happen immediately began casting a necromantic spell. Joshua quickly responded to this by setting his armor aflame and pinning Marik in a full nelson and burning him a little. The zombies on tables in the room began to stir and Carlos grappled and killed the one he was near. Meanwhile, Maximoff fought seared one zombie with his heat vision and Harlock threw an ax at Joshua to try and assist Marik. Joshua climbed out of his armor while it was still squeezing Marik and summoned a new armor and a sword made of bone and flesh.

With a bit of help from Harlock and Maximoff, Marik managed to throw off the flaming suit of armor and complete his spell. A tornado of of bones and flesh swirled around Marik sweeping up the zombie armor. Carlos used this time to draw his bow and pin a zombie to the floor. Corpse Stitcher Joshua growing tired of having so many enemies charged at Marik hoping to cut him in half, it didn’t work. A well placed punch from Marik plus a laser blast from Maximoff injured him forcing him to abandon this armor and switch to a flying one to try and gain the upper hand. Carlos tried to shoot him down with an arrow, which was swatted away. Harlock threw his trusty knife, which was also swatted away. Finally, Maximoff tried to blast him with eye lasers, which just plain missed. Joshua, feeling pressured decided it would be best to get out and set up shop elsewhere. He dive bombed Harlock who was still by the exit, but Marik was waiting for him to lower his altitude and punched him with his boney fist. Joshua, who was now feeling nostalgic towards the last time he died summoned a cannon like weapon from elsewhere. He fired it which released a large burst before fleeing down the stairs. Harlock chased after him, slashed him, and knocked him down the stairs as he tumbled until his dying health levels disappeared.

The party descended and found the dead Abyssal on the first floor, whose body had knocked over a bookshelf revealing a basement floor. Downstairs was a study which contained several maps, more books, and more zombie orders from the Forsaken Lion. The party was able to decipher the maps and learned that first the zombies were being sent eastward and that the nearest reliable way back to Creation was to the north and controlled by the Guild and lead to the city of Nexus.