Chronicles of Khaldun: Crux of Eternity

The Tatters of the King, Part 3

Waterday, Harvester 19, 552 CY (50 AN)

The Shields of the Sorrowfell make their way through the silent halls of Skyfall Delve. They approach the next room to find the door already open, revealing the grey-skinned, bulbous-headed humanoids within. They appear to be milling about, partially engaged in reverence of the trough before them. A large tank on one side of the trough is leaking a faintly-glowing green goo and a hot, faintly-glowing sand. Bezaldooz and Torinn quickly move into the room, with Torinn engaging one of the humanoids while Bezaldooz menaces them with spells. As Peren enters the fray, the other grey-skinned humanoids rush to engage the two warriors in melee, with their leader leaping over the pit to engage. Peren’s sharp eyes swiftly determine that the trough reacts to things placed within, burning or electricuting them somehow. As Valna moves into melee and one of the creatures falls, some of the humanoids move to engage Bosabrieln and Bezaldooz. Bezaldooz’s quasit servant, Bonatos, touches the humanoid engaged with Bezaldooz, possessing it with a demon and sending it after the humanoids’ chieftain. Bosabrieln, however, is forced to hold his own against the savage, grey-skinned humanoid. Meanwhile, Peren, seeing an opportunity, shoves two of the creatures at the trough; one manages to catch itself on the edge and tumbles to the ground, shaken and injured but still in fighting condition, while the other stumbles backward into the trough. Immediately, a flash of light overtakes the creature, badly burning it. It survives and manages to escape the pit, rejoining the fight. However, it is quickly slain.

As the creatures regroup on Bosabrieln’s position, he finds himself overwhelmed, but is quickly rescued by the timely intervention of Peren, Torinn, and Valna. The assembled group quickly slays another one of the grey-skinned things and then takes down the leader. The remaining two creatures do not even have the chance to flee or surrender, as the Shields vanquish them so quickly.

After resting, the Shields move to the room next door. As they open the door, they see two large constructs. One, roughly conical in shape, hovers slightly above the floor and bristles with attachments resembling rifles as well as two tentacles. The other, a bit more domed in shape, features tentacles and wheeled treads. It appears to be sifting through garbage as the Shields approach.

The floating construct perceives the Shields first, generating a smoke screen and then launching some manner of grenade into the hallway. It detonates, sending the Shields stumbling throughout the hallway and sending Torinn cascading into the room. The construct then pulls him closer with a tractor beam, and proceeds to shoot at him with a rapid-fire beam weapon. In the chaos, Bezaldooz conjures a wall of flame skirting the wheeled construct and blasting its chassis with the extreme heat. As the Shields struggle to regain their footing after the opening assault, the second construct moves from the flames and grabs Torinn and runs him over, knocking him unconscious. As the Shields attempt to regroup, an alarmed Bosabrieln rushes into the room in an attempt to help Torinn. However, the floating construct reacts, bringing the bard closer with its tractor beam and then assaulting him with a volley of beam blasts. Bosabrieln, too, falls quickly before the savage assault. Knowing that they must save their comrades, the other Shields rush into the room. Quickly, however, their attention is divided; Peren moves to menace the floating construct, while Bezaldooz and Valna move to attack the large, wheeled construct. The thing starts attacking Bezaldooz as Valna revives Torinn, forcing the construct to deal with the renewed threat from the dragonborn. Meanwhile, Peren is faring poorly alone against the hovering construct. Valna rushes around the wall of fire and prays to heal Bosabrieln, menacing the hovering construct with spells. As Torinn moves to engage the hovering construct, Bezaldooz is left alone with the other as it begins to savage him with its tentacles. The floating construct uses its tractor beam to shove Bezaldooz into his own flames, and then the wheeled construct grabs and crushes him. He flees, but the thing pursues, sending tendrils into the hallway to grab him. He loses consciousness, and the wall of flames falls.

As the thing turns its attention to the other group, they scatter in an attempt to rally and present a less obvious target for its guns and grenades. Bosabrieln revives Bezaldooz, who finds to his surprise that Bonatos is on his way away. Bonatos congratulates him on his swift recovery, and suggests that he was going to retrieve help. Bezaldooz angrily orders him to return to him.

As the hovering construct moves within its own smokescreen, the desperate battle continues with Torinn and Valna menacing the thing. Bezaldooz manages to catch both constructs in a well-placed fireball, and finally, the combined might of the Shields sends the hovering construct crashing to the floor. Able to turn their undivided attention on the wheeled construct, they make short work of it. Exhausted, they search the wreckage and find a piece of alien technology. Then, they rest, determining that they will likely hit one more room before they must retreat and gather their strength again.