DM Notes: This is the end of our current campaign, but it is actually game number 17 with the same heroes as I like running shorter campaigns.
My wife is currently in Italy so all my players were remote for this game so I decided to make a Theatre-Of-The-Mind style game with more skills challenges than actual detailed combat and I think it worked fine.
Down in Azrael’s lair under the Pleasure Dome, our heroes was faced with Arcon, the screaming insane Angel trapped in hell, with his beloved, the fallen Angel Azrael wrapped around him, crying tears of blood.
But while this clearly was a tragic turn of events, the heroes still had two problems: the missing 19% of Seipora’s soul and the Demons attacking Dragonskeep back home. They had a contract with Azrael to help them with both.
First Seipora cautiously asked for the Soul Coin containing 19% of her soul. Azrael readily gave up the coin.
However, convincing Azrael to fulfil the second part of the contract, fighting the Demons, proved much harder, but in the end she gave in as breaking the contract goes against her Lawful nature… and even if she did, she would have to face the Diabolic Court, found Strict Side in Abriymoch.
Here we go
Angrily, Azrael got up and with lightning speed flew out. The heroes scrambled to keep up and as they came up in the Pleasure Dome, they saw the partying devils take flight and follow Azrael out.
With some quick thinking, Kari and Seipora jumped up and grabbed the legs of two devils, while Thorga Misty Stepped on top of a third one.
And off they went.
However, as the swarm of devils reached Styxhaven, the heroes opted to jump off fearing they might get dropped into the memory-wiping River Styx.
Instead, they convinced the resting Boat Man to take them back up the river by paying him 6 Soul Coins and a Grapper.
As the boat reached the 3rd layer of Hell, Minauros, the stench of the bog ridden realm mixed with the rocking of the boat, became to much for Thorga and he threw up over the railings only to pull himself together juuust before his dwarven nose touched the Styx waters.
The Boat Man, having actually been resting for a reason, was starting to struggle and as they passed the odd devilish shop by the shore, Thorga started helping with the ore to take them out of Minauros and up into Dis.
They recognised Dis, the 2nd layer of Hell, as the labyrinth of tall mountain sides and before they could gather their sense of direction, the Hellfire Cannon, fired at them, but they all hit the deck and did not get hit.
Next up was the pack of Hell Hounds, but here the party opted to commandeer the boat around to avoid confrontation.
With the mighty Cerberus up ahead, they had to make a decision whether to fight their way through or take a long way around avoiding conflict, but losing time.
Seipora opted for a third option casting Phantasmal Force on the three-headed monster to confuse it long enough for the boat to pass and sail up the river the the 1st layer of hell: Avernus.
Avernus was swarming with Imps and the party had to clear a path to get closer to shore.
Kari, used Hail of Thorns to clear the port side, while Miss Gentlefeet cleared the front with her 666 Shooter and Seipora clear starboard with a Thunderwave.
Almost there, the boat was slowed down by Imps attacking the Boat Man. Thorga grabbed Miss Gentlefeet and Polly the Owlbear Cub and Misty Stepped to shore, while Kari elegantly followed by jumping on rocks.
Seipora had a little bit more difficulty navigating the rocks but finally made it ashore and our heroes ran the final meters up and out.
They had returned to the Material Plane.
Follow that Devil!
As the heroes emerged in the sunlight, Kari quickly used her senses to locate the swarm of Devils led by Azrael and to no surprise they were heading for Dragonskeep.
Quickly the heroes followed and they made it to the battle field to see the Devils defeating the Demons while the brave defenders of Dragonskeep was holding the Undead forces at bay.
Unfortunately, some of the bowmen mistook Azrael for a Demon and fired a hail of arrows at her.
Raging, she turned around at the culprits, but the heroes tried to convince her that it had been a mistake to no avail.
As she crouched down, ready to take flight to attack, Thorga tried to confuse her by saying that her contract would be fulfilled when she had dispatched the Undead.
But her law-driven logic, quickly calmed her down as this did not align with the contract and with the simple phase: “Contract fullfilled. It is done.” she took off and flew back to Hell with her retinue of Devils.
The next morning, washed and refreshed, the heroes were brought in front of the Council of the High King, only to realise the Council was less than happy with the heroes having brought Devils into the Material Realm.
Now fearing the Devils would return, the High King scolded the heroes, but they all three posed well-articulated arguments for their contribution to saving Dragonskeep.
The heroes were sent back to their chambers to await the verdict of the Council. While waiting the High King came to their chamber in disguise explaining that he fully understood they had saved Dragonskeep, but that he had to follow the rules of the land.
He explained that in the end, the heroes would loose titles, lands and privileges they had earned from saving the city from the Drow Army.
He said he would find a way to restore their status as long as they accepted the verdict.
As the heroes were brought in front of the Council, they accepted the verdict.
A talk in a tavern
A few nights later, in a semi seedy tavern, the heroes were still mulling over their bad luck, when the High King approached them explaining that the Realm was still under threat as the unknown force behind the Undead uprising was never discovered.
Now with corpses of Humans, Drown, Dark Dwarves, Demons and Devils littered all around Dragonskeep, there was an even bigger looming threat.
He begged the heroes to find the source of the Undead legion and promised to restore their honour.
But the heroes also had another pressing problem: Thorga explained that the Troll Warband that had killed everyone in his village was still rampaging through Dwarven settlements.
And with the promise of gold as in the ancient Dwarven song, the Troll Warband had grown bigger, bolder and more organised unaware that the gold refered to in the song is actually the Dwarves families, not actual gold as no Dwarf would ever put the location of his gold in a song.
Ancient Dwarven song
Oh where to find the gold of our hearts?
Oh home behind our solid doors.
We will protect the gold of our hearts.
Along the base of Titanheights.
Strap your boots and away we go.
Oh where do we go again?
We go to protect the gold of our hearts.
Along the west of Titanheights.