Sar – Aryth 7th, 998 YK
Saturday – December 7th, 998 YK
It is hard to believe that it has only been a week since you defeated Khurystas at the Orrery of Vortuum and teleported back to Zilargo via your linked portal ritual. It honestly feels like a lifetime ago. You are back in Korranberg and staying at your modest estate. It is comfortable, but by no means as lavish as your son’s or uncle’s respective homes. Although you have had servants attend to the place in your absence, it has clearly been neglected. Caiphys and Sejik left Korranberg shortly on their return and presumably went back to Sharn. They left no word with you as to where they were headed. Kohl and Taveah have remained in town, though are in the process of making arrangements to return to Sharn. And when you think back on Morthos, the image of his gruesome death at the hands of shadowy abyssal creatures is hard to shake.
In the last week you have been furiously detailing what you learned about Open Matrix technology of the Beginner’s Luck airship. You believe you have developed a way to improve the technology, making it more stable and easier to mass produce. However, you will need access to the Beginner’s Luck to complete your work.
Fortunately, the ship’s captain sent you a message yesterday, indicating that he would be arriving in Korranberg to collect the remainder payment for his services. He was clearly irritated at being left behind in Argonnessen. You realize it will not be an easy task to convince Baklos of the merits of Open Matrix technology. He is quite old school and dedicated to Inmost’s Elemental Binding techniques. You are also keenly aware that this technology originated from House Cannith, and it has not well received by Inmost or its parent organization the Power of Purity (Zilargo’s state run elemental binding outfit). You are careful to not disclose your work to anyone and thus have been working quietly in isolation.
Complicating matters, however, is House Sivis. Your bloodline association has been confirmed. It turns out your family has no record of the Mark’s manifestation, because it’s last bearer was excoriated (exiled) from the house. All family records were destroyed and your family cast out. Ironically, this ancestor was none other than Argos. The same family member who Baklos told you about and the same who claimed to have visited Argonnessen and be rescued by a dragon named Anaarlasha. The reasons for his excoriation have not been made known to you. Such as that may be, your admission into the guild has been confirmed and now they seek to put your talents to work.
For the last 3 days, a member of the House has stood on your doorstep, seeking audience with you. His demeanor has become more and more hostile with each passing day. This morning, you are working on getting your documents in order in anticipation of Captain Blackwillow’s return tomorrow when the doorbell rings and the all too familiar know of the Sivis agent echoes through your home.
You hear his muffled words… “Master Miklos, you will not avoid me again today. I have been quite patient. Tasker Torralyn d’Sivis must speak with you immediately. It is highly irregular for a newly entered house member to act in such a rude and unfriendly manner. I demand admittance. Ignore me and we shall see your family excoriated once more…. perhaps for another 1,000 years!”
The story to follow entails Miklos being summoned by House Sivis to travel to the city of Io’Lokar in Argonnessen as part of a diplomatic team related to the Library of Korranberg’s information exchange program. After much haggling Miklos agrees and returns begrudgingly back to Argonnessen. However, his grumblings cease upon his arrival. The city is magnificent and once he gains access to its libraries, he is overwhelmed by the vastness of knowledge contained therein. Miklos learns that Io’lokar, translates to City of Knowledge, and is perhaps the most unusual location in Argonnessen. It is a humanoid settlement deep within the draconic free-for-all that is the Vast, Io’lokar is home to warriors, spellcasters, and scholars of unparalleled ability. The bright history of the city had dark beginnings, however. On the empty plain to the east stands the ruin of the city from which Io’lokar was built — Io’vakas, Gate of Knowledge. Centuries before, Io’vakas was razed as a result of the deceit of the yuan-ti and later through the efforts of a dragon named Arnaalash, Io’lokar was constructed. This was the city Miklos’ ancestor, Argos, spoke of after being rescued by Arnaalasha herself.
While in the city, Miklos’ primary role is to lead a research effort into advances in planar travel, specifically to Risia (The Plain of Ice), Fernia (The Sea of Fire) and Kythri (The Churning Chaos). Zilargo is seeking new ways to bind elementals for faster more efficient travel, and suspect their may be a way to harness energy from the plains directly. After a week trouble begins to brew. Miklos learns that the yuan-ti still lurk in the shadow of Io’Lokar. He is informed by the queen of the city that the presence of the yuan-ti threatens the very existance of the city. It was the presence of the yuan-ti and their dealings in forbidden magic that provoked the Eyes of Chronepsis to reign fire upon the city of Io’vakas long ago, destroying the city and nearly everyone within. In order to avoid the same fate as Io’vakas, Miklos and several others are tasked with putting an end to the Yuan-ti’s secret cabal and routing them from the city’s walls.
|During the adventure, Miklos learns that the yuan-ti serve a dark master of unknown origin deep within the caverns below Io’vakas. Miklos’ and team enter the yuan-ti cavern fortress and eventually reach the inner sanctum of their dark master. Many losses occur during the mission and Miklos suffers a permanent scar across his right cheek during a battle against a powerful Yuan-ti Abomination. Once, inside the inner sanctum, Miklos discovers to his horror that their dark master is a Yuan-ti Anathema, named Zsur’kulk. The battle is fierce, and the Anathema proves to be too powerful to defeat by force alone. However, Miklos is able to trick the Anathema into stepping into a planar portal to Kythri where Miklos seals it within.|
Upon returning to Io’lokar, Miklos and the remaining survivors (a female dragonborn warrior named Mishaan, and a human cleric named Onsten) are greeted as heroes. Miklos also learns that Argos’ visit to Io’vakas was indeed fact, and that Miklos has fulfilled his family’s debt as predicted by Arnaalasha to Argos ages ago. Once his team completes their research in Argonnessen, he and the Zil ambassadors return home. Miklos returns to Korranberg after the New Year, to find the city suffering from the worst winter season in history and that his uncle Baklos has passed away suddenly. A House Jorasco priest tells Miklos that no magic from his house could cure his uncle. He also confesses that the healing magic of Jorasco has been fading since the passing of the new year and the falling of a Siberys shard over the island of Farlnen to the north.