It was a literal relief to sell that heavy and cumbersome armor we’d picked up under the mountain – it was a burden, but necessary. This new armor is so much lighter!
After a bit of celebrating and shopping, Khonnir comes to us, asking for assistance. We accompany him to a warehouse – there have been reports of contraband and the town council has asked him to find it. He wisely came to us.
Rather tactlessly (sometimes it can’t be helped), we break down the door. Khonnir has a tech sensor which leads us to an odd crate – one that perhaps shouldn’t even be here. On its side in Androffan is “a.c.e.”.
Upon opening the crate we see that it houses has a large dish with a rod sticking out center, pointed down. Below it, a number of wires run down what I assume is a hole in the floor that shouldn’t be there. Naturally, we all descend. When we reach the bottom we find a big metal box, with an odd word on the side: “trans-mit-tor”. Mr. Preston is able to deduce that it’s a power transmitter, configured to send power 105 miles to the NE ( roughly where there’s a “town” called Scrapwall).
Aakpesh, suspecting there is more than meets the eye in the room, finds a secret door, leading to a tunnel. Always the impulsive one, he darts down the tunnel. After a bit, he returns saying that while the tunnel dead-ends, there is a ladder going up – into another warehouse! Khonnir doesn’t know who owns them, but says that we can ask the council at our meeting tomorrow morning.
Apparently we have a late morning meeting with the council.
As it turns out, they warehouses are Garmin’s, and he’d rented them to Meyanda – the very ones those guards were protecting.
We have a good night at the tavern. The drinks are free, and I don’t have many, but we all tip well.
The council consists of 5 townsfolk, three we know:
- Dolga Freddert – the one who commissioned us to find Khonnir.
- Joram Kyte, the cleric.
- Khonnir Baine.
- Bazlundi Otterbie (don’t know).
- Soceal Murgave (don’t know).
Dolga is seated in the middle, her chair higher than the rest. She calls council to order. Tenlow and I (he provides some music, me the story) give a backlog of our adventures.
Dolga informs us that Meyanda’s false machine god is called “Hellion”, and her crew were called the “Lords of Rust”. Tenlow recalls some knowledge of a gang in Scrapwall (it’s all gangs) with that name. The council looks grave at that news – they’re concerned the LoR would be interested in Torch and don’t believe the town is safe yet.
They ask if we’d go there and find it out. We agree to.
Joram asks to see us after the council meeting. He tells us of an old associate of his, a woman named Dinvaya, lives there. She had fled from the Technic League. He gives us his personal holy symbol of Brigh, and offers us his lesser rod of extend metamagic if we deliver the message. We of course accept.
There are two ways that will get us to Scrapwall: we can take river (slower, longer) or land (faster on horses, more danger). I spend the last of my gold on the appropriate gear and a fine steed, which I’ve named “Artax”. I just hope we don’t come across any swamplands.
We spend one last night in town, and head out in morning.
After riding for a while, we head into an odd forest, which seems to be suffering from some sort of blight. Ahead lies a sooty black tower, belching trails of smoke that can be seen for miles.
Some of the trees around us are most curious – the have a fractal-like look to them. Vayu hits one with an electro stick – it rings like a bell, quite loudly too. Some of them though, look crystalline? It would appear that only the dead trees are like that. Jacques snaps off a twig from one, and it cuts him, quite cleanly – they’re extremely sharp. Seeing an ailing but not yet dead tree, he moves in for a closer look. The edges look burning look like they’re burning to nothingness, very slowly. He breaks off a branch, and it continues to burning. He doesn’t let it go until it starts burning his fingers – and it seems that there may even be some sort of transformation? I’m not sure, but either way I heal him.
And Jacques being Jacques, he picks the branch up again. Before I heal him, I cast diagnose disease. What is happening is not natural, and it’s not magic. It’s na-no-tech. I heal him, and give him a touch of good to help him resist this transformative effect. He fails, but eventually succeeds.
He picks it up a third time (ugh), but on an area away from the transformation, and throws it off trail. It explodes, making a castrophony of ringing. It is less than pleasant.
As we get closer to the dark tower, we can hear clanging, banging, and whistles. These are not the sounds of the woods, but of machines.
We’re approaching the “choking tower”.