The Evils of Illmire: When Three Become One (session report)

Spoiler alert: if you plan to play The Evils of Illmire, don’t read this!

I’ve been a bit neglectful of my Illmire blogs and just didn’t find the time or have the inclination to write up the previous two sessions (I’m blaming it on Euro 2020). So now with that third session done and a little time before the next game, I thought it was high time I showed a bit of grit and got this thing written!

So where were we… oh yes, the group had just lost Kivarg in the Observer’s tower…

  • The remaining three heroes decide to leave the Observer and his tower, they can’t see a way to rescue Yorivar just yet and consider the sorcerer’s demand to kill all of the Chimera Goblins just too much (and that is just for starters, who knows what he would ask for after that!)
  • Heading down the stairs the Observer spots them and asks will they carry out his request (which will in time lead to Yorivar being released from the glass tank in which he is suspended). They refuse and he becomes quite irate… an attempted charm spell fails and the party flee.
  • On their descent down the tower they tell the Chimera Goblins to flee to safety, but these poor creatrues are reluctant to leave the tower, even knowing what the Observer plans for them.
  • As the party step out of the tower a huge glass tank plummets from the uppermost floors and smashes into the ground, shattering into a million pieces and making a right mess of poor Yorivar; not even a the most powerful of divine magic could save him now! It is clear the Observer is not happy with their actions, but beyond this hasn’t taken any other action just yet.
  • Not quite sure how to proceed the band decide to try to recruit the lumberjacks who may help them raid the cult lair, but first decide to head back to Illmire.
  • The journey back to town takes a couple of days and along the way they encounter a half-elf who identifies himself as Vigark. Without any great fuss Vigark joins the party, realising they need help dealing with the cult (how hugely convenient from a gameplay point of view!)
  • Once back in Illmire, the party see things have improved in the town since they were last here, order has been restored with Lord Crellmont leading the good folks in repairing the place after the damage the cult caused.
  • Still reeling from the loss of Kivarg (although still having a chuckle at how he met his end), our heroes were happy to be reunited with Gravik. However the dwarf’s eyes had grown milkier and he had clearly lost some weight. It seemed he was clutching onto the spade retrieved from Rancidius’ quarters in the crypt.
  • A plan is forged and put into place to separate Gravik from the spade, but he freaks out and has to be secured in the gaol to calm down.
  • Meanwhile a conversation with the priestess Nivendra, once a victim of the mindphage worms, leads to some interesting revelations. While under the control of the cult, she had terrifying nightmares but came to understand that there is a strong bond between the Fearmother and her three Fearspawn – and that harming them will weaken her. The party have already destroyed one Fearspawn and know another is in the basement of the Old Watchtower, and the priestess gives a final clue to the third… she heard chains clinking and had visions of dark stone tunnels with rails.
  • The next day they head back to the Old Watchtower. As they approach the basement once more the gnawing fear starts to get to them. By the time they reach the Fearspawn’s chamber, all but Kristos have fled in fear.
  • Not wanting to let the side down the brave rogue summons Shalmaneser’s Lion and shoots arrows at the Fearspawn while the lion charges in (but only after the Fearspawn attacks Kristos, it only defends it’s owner).
  • Heroic Kristos and the lion are starting to harm the monstrosity, but it focusses it’s barbed tentacle attacks on Kristos (it is intelligent and realises he is the cause of it’s problem), and within a couple of lucky rolls, the poor thief is sliced and diced and lies on the floor bleeding to death.
  • Anistor is able to briefly overcome his fear and heads back down the stairs where he finds the fallen thief. Gathering him up he rushes outside and joins the panicked and fleeing Evalore and Vigark.
  • Luckily the stout lion is able to finish off the Fearspawn and with the overwhelming sense of fear no longer present the party are able to return to the basement where they set the monster’s remains on fire – the stench is overwhelming as the beast and the rotten corpses surround it are engulfed in flame. Exploring the chamber after the flames have died down, Evalore picks up a black handled blade from an altar which he recognises as the Athame of Haruspex, but after Gravik’s experience with the cursed spade, he is reluctant to use it.
  • With Kristos in a bad way and the rest of the party in need of a change of underwear, they decide head back to Illmire for some R&R.
  • With Gravik now recuperated from his spade induced malady he is ready to rejoin the party – with what lies ahead they’ll need him. They also learn about the old Copperclaw Mine to the north of Illmire, abandoned not long before the cult started operating in the area and reportedly haunted.
  • Once more refreshed our band decide to try their luck with the mine, maybe they can deal with the Fearspawn there. A few miles travel sees them on the mountainside near the mine entrance. A couple of shafts seem to head down and there is a locked and chained gate leading in. A search of the area reveals a half eaten body, and signs of a campfire. Groans and moans can be heard from one of the shafts – the party decide not to go that way!
  • Evalore’s portal spell sees the lock and chains quickly removed, and in no time the party are exploring the mine. While it has been abandoned for some time, there are still traces of comings and goings, footprints in the mud. The party stumble across a couple of groups of shambling undead which they tidily dispatch, but have yet to find the Fearspawn – and when they do, how will they deal with it?

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