close now to the shard of Thuban, one of the strange items on Elbrecht’s list now being hunted by the adventurers, Elbrecht and now even Vecna, the party answer Ymrius’ arrogant summons.
First however, the party must activate and traverse his teleportation runes. Bel’estior recalls that devices like this attune to the darkest part of the soul and that only reciting their darkest secrets will open the way, the catch is that it is also shared wit hthe creator of the gate. Each of them in turn announce their innermost horror to their friends, and evaporates into cinders.
On the other side, the party comes face to face with strange, chaotic globules of black mass that float curiously above them, and four ornate sarcophagi arranged around the room. While debating furiously with Ymrius’ voice, they pay little attention to the caskets swinging open and soon they are surrounded by the decaying bodies of Ymrius’ family, now taken as his lieutenants. Having dispatched already their spirits back in the Barvalt crypt, the group makes short work of the family a second time.
Having watched the skirmish, the floating black masses, evidently possessed of an intellect of their own, offer the party a way forward. The party quickly find that in the darkness of the halls above, that they have lost each other, and themselves. One by one each of them finds a small room with several doors, and in each room waits an individual from their past, who confronts them over the horrors they have committed or the lies they have told. It takes some longer than others to realize they are facing illusions, Jonn finding help from the vicious intellect of his newly found weapon that reels against the assault by a similar intellect. Before long the party have navigated the twisting corridoors and unreliable doors and find each other, and in seeking a way out find and confront the source of the illusions: A Far Realm entity that seems to be part of the tower itself.
Having destroyed the creature, the adventurers find themselves back where they started, in the chamber containing the sarcophagi. Wary of more misdirection and traps, the group search through the room for possible exits, and find another plain door behind one of the enormous tapestries. Having learned her lesson, Tarja hacks a peephole and the party look through, to find the host himself, absently attending a large broken bronze mechanism. The adventurers decide it’s time to confront Ymrius, and burst through to a twisted, very insane host who reveals that the shard has been taken by another while they were making their way up. To confuse further, in his insanity he offers the intruders safe passage out of the tower. The party argue over the course to take, creating division within the ranks, but finally, wary, haunted, but unwilling to let the horrors of the spire continue, they attack and murder the mad necromancer.
Will the fall of the Spire’s creator, the tower itself crumbles into the marsh, taking the party with it. When the adventurers finally manage to dig themselves out of the rubble, they find themselves, and their new companion Brian the cat, irrevokably lost in the lower swamp as the sun comes up and the ruble ofthe Spire returns to it’s ghostly fom and fades away.