Dark Sun: The Tyrant of Tyr

Session 8

Excerpts from the journal of Eben the Freebooter

The morning of Haze 24 bursts through the shutters at the innix and its already blisteringly hot outside. I head down to the Inn bleary eyed with a craving for some sweet Kank nectar. Taking my fill I look around and see the Naraaku and Solzak puzzling over a piece of parchment scrawled with a random assortment of letters. It seems that after we retired they went out and returned to Narissa’s and found a note, I say found but it is more like the note found them. No sign of necromancy though as they both say they remember only silver dust and the scent of fresh flowers? Its not something I ever remember coming from Narissa’s…

We deliberate on the note for more than an hour, during which time we see no sign of Shalaya, it seems she has gone walking again. I think she is causing more trouble than she is worth – if the Cult want her they are welcome to her as far as I’m concerned! Eventually we decipher the note to say “SOLZAK. MEET ME IN ALTARUK. URGENT. NARISSA.” Solzak expresses the need to leave immediately, but right now there seems to be much that requires our presence here in Tyr and we elect to hold off for now and explore other avenues until we get time to make the trip. Altaruk is some days travel from here, and the rate at which events are accelerating here in Tyr there might not be much to return to!!!

As our discussion continued a group of gladiators arrived in the Inn, carrying a parchment indicating the games sign-up had begun and that all who were interested should go and sign up at the ministry of public games. There was a short discussion but so far no-one was willing to sign up, although the prize of 6000 gp for one of the matches I find very appealing.

Abdiel paid a street rat called ‘Neebit’ to send word to the man with emerald eyes to meet us at the inix as we had important information for him. He duly arrived and we told him about the house Ianto warehouse and silt cult activities and the necromancer. He was concerned about Stel’s apparent stealing or trading of slaves to the cultists and wondered what the cult was doing with them. He was grateful with the information and informed us that we now that we had accrued a form of favour with the house. We are not entirely sure what this entails but in Tyr favours are often far more valuable than gold. The man with emerald eyes also revealed his real name as J’Sek or at least the name he chose to give us. J’Sek then told us that a large caravan of slaves was heading for Tyr and was due about 6pm this evening. His concern now was for the safety of the cargo, which represented a size-able amount of house vordons slave assets from the Iron mines. Now that the cultists seem interested in slaves he requested we help with ensuring that those slaves didn’t fall into the wrong hands. He is unsure if his own agents have been compromised so now sees us as being able to provide the most reliable assistance in this matter and assures us of more favour with the house should the slaves be received as planned.

We then decided to go back to the asticles manor to see if Perseus had returned. Heading out to the noble district we found the mansion grounds to be deserted and the door was ajar. Everything was dark inside and the rooms had been ransacked – but in a destructive way rather than purposeful. We then noticed in the baths a body of a servant – severely decayed. I drew my Axe and cautiously approached when all of a sudden a flash of purple light flew from a tile on the floor that send a ripple of necrotic energy through the water. Immediately the body stirred and reanimated! Without hesitation I cleaved its head from its shoulders with one swing and fully prepared for more attacks we waited in silence a moment more but nothing came and so we ventured onwards. In the central area of the mansion there was an indoor garden and we found tied to the trees more bodies of servants, decayed and strung up like puppets, ready to spring to unlife. We then found another cursed arcane circle below them which we assumed would activate them. So with Axe and sword and magic ready we proceeded downstairs to find a huge cellar filled with barrels of a fine vintage of Asticles wine. Immediately I could see the Elf had the same thought as me, a large abandoned warehouse full of one of the most expensive and sought after wines in the Tyr region – all for the taking!!! We just had to make sure nobody saw us… Further exploration revealed another large arcane circle which would activate two more rooms full of ritually placed servant/zombies. Abdiel was able to deactivate this circle with relative ease and we headed back upstairs and up to the first floor. Taking each step one at a time we checked for more necrotic traps and sure enough at the top of the stairs we managed to avoid another which would have seen 2 house guards re-animated against us. The upper floor was deserted and ransacked also, but this time it looked like some of the rooms had been more carefully searched. The study had been searched in particular the study, and inside we found a small map detailing an area of the ringing mountains close to a halfling village named jalaka and the names of two individuals, chief ‘Zabul’ and a shamen named ‘Azeka’, both halflings as far as we could tell. Abdiel is taken by some of the books in the library detailing strange ‘histories’ of Athas, mentioning an incredibly powerful individual named Rajaat and a time when Halflings were one of the only races on the planet and when the rivers flowed with water?! It all seems a bit far fetched to me, but he believes it so much as there was an air of authority to the passages, enough to engage his interest anyway. As we finished our sweep of the upper floor we found a locked and barred room, the door was scorched around the edges as if a defiler had touched it and used it as a conduit for a powerful spell. We crashed in to find a room devoid of all life, sucked dry as if a necromantic leech had forcibly drained all the energy from every object in the room. It was a horrific sight, but we were able to discern a note written by the guard that indicated that he was sorry for failing his lord and master. A pity, but the weak will make way for the strong…

As we were leaving naraaku heard muffled sniffling from outside one of the barred windows, which on investigation turned out to be the servant Deacon! He’d run off when the attack began and only now had returned, feeling very sorry for himself and snivelling like a scorned child. We told him to pull himself together and tell the rest of the Asticles family in their vineyards outside of Tyr what has happened, and to not return until Agis does, at which he rushes off, still snivelling. Abdiel found another street rat called ‘nesbit’ (no relation) to summon j’sek to the inix once more, this time we had a business opportunity for him, and house Vordon!

Adbiel is met by a servant riding a Crodlu, dressed far more formally than your average runner and is summoned to the office of the head of state for Tyr – Gorask Tanik. From here we part company with Abdiel and head back to the inix, to await J’sek and the return of Abdiel (depending on what the templars want with him I suppose!).

I recount here what Abdiel chose to divulge to us, but the exact conversation was obviously templar business and not meant for our ears. I care not, for the templars’ will is their own, and as long as it does not interfere with us and our business it is of little concern to me. Tanik has knowledge of our investigations and of the cult of Silt. This is of little surprise as the eyes and ears of Kalak and the templars are everywhere, and it seems the incidents of deaths and activities has begun to raise some gold gilted eyebrows. Abdiel has been given the task to investigate the activities of the cult for the purposes of reporting to the templars so they can gauge the ‘threat’ to Tyr, and additionally it seems we have been invited to a celebration to be held after the gladiatorial games on Haze 27. What is of interest to the templar and us too is that one of the organisers for the party is Sycia – the illusive head of house Ur-Zola. She has been ruffling many feathers in Tyr it seems and I would relish the opportunity to do the same to her…

Back at the inix J’sek arrives shortly after abdiel returns and we waste no time in presenting him with our little ‘deal’ regarding the Asticles wine. Initially cautious, J’sek agrees and offers us 10% of the profits that the wine achieves when it is sold, of which he will try to go through the elves in the market so as not to arouse suspicion. Naraaku shows him the bow we found in the Ianto warehouse and asks J’sek if he knows of anywhere he can get it identified and repaired. J’sek points him to a contact he has in the market named ‘Chontou’ who is also a purveyor of potion-fruits. Additionally Abdiel hands J’sek the deeds from the Ur-Zola property to see if J’sek can assist in putting the correct heir to the Ur-Zola fortune back to his rightful place. J’Sek says that as templar Abdiel would have more luck with this but he would lend a hand if he could and would agree to accompany him to the office of the senior administrator ‘Gennet’.

Abdiel and J’sek set out individually to rendevous at the High bureau’s as Naraaku and the rest of us head to Shadow square to investigate the bow and try to re stock on fruits.

Again the shady business of the templars is beyond this simple chronicle but what I can gather is that upon visiting the High Bureau Abdiel met with some reluctance from the staff at his unscheduled visit and that Gennet himself was equally ill mannered and impatient. He seemed to care little as to the ‘genuine’ inheritor of the Ur-Zola mansion and offering minimum assistance. He would send a message to Sycia warning of her less than legitimate inheritance and attempting to locate Brevin, the rightful inheritor. Gennet revealed that apparently Brevin was disgraced after being caught in an uncompromising position with a local Elven minstrel, which could complicate matters, but it would still be possible to reinstall him as head of household were he ocated and his name cleared. J’sek seems to think that Gennet has been bought and will provide little assistance. A frustrating line of enquiry indeed.

Back in the Elven market, Naraaku speaks to ‘Chontou’ who examines the bow and immediately attracts the attention of the Sky singer ‘Deryssa’, one of the more important tribal members in the market. At first she accuses Naraaku of stealing the bow, but then she recognises him as a fellow trader and is more amenable – offering Naraaku to speak to a contact of hers in the veil named ‘Loubarra’ who haunts the house of fingers most evenings. The bow it turns out is a relic owned by the sky singers in Nibernay, who recently were subjected to a vicious attack by mysterious attackers. Seeing Stel’s handiwork in this Deryssa is outraged and vows retribution in blood. She will speak to the elders and contact Naraaku when they have made a decision on what they want to do.

So we leave and head back to the inix to regroup and discuss what the next plan of action is. It is now mid afternoon, still a good few hours until the caravan is due back in Tyr. Should we ride out to meet it or wait for it to come to us…


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