The sun begins to dip low on the horizon as the party travels down the spire to regroup and decide their next move. Rilken's acrophobia makes hoisting him thirty meters in the air difficult. As they reach the botton, they inform Terron of the treasure at the top, as well as the specters. Terron reaches into a pouch and withdraws a yellow paper ribbon with the word DEMOLITION on it. He explains that hoisting gold out of a tower full of specters is much more difficult than picking gold out of rubble. They will commence the dig in the morning.
The party exchange nervous glances as they head back to base camp.
Night falls and the party prepares for a long day ahead. Illiaph calls for a one-on-one meeting with Terron and the two engage in a lengthy telepathic conversation.
Shalazar, Al and Rilken hatch a plan to confuse the demolition team with false demolition ribbons, but Dael informs them that sabotaging any of Imzaeras's work puts him at too much risk. The party hope for the best and prepare for the worst. They inform Gianni of the presence of specters in the tower. He shows concern but does not shirk his duty to Findle. Without the gold, Findle won't survive the famine.
Illiaph gathers his party and tells them his understanding of Terrons plan. He claims that Terron plans to use a shadowpool to travel to the ancient dwarven city of Kalzomor and unlock the Black Curtain that seals the city. This may release the ghast plague which felled the old Empyrean empire. Terron seeks a piece to revive the Founder of Flesh and bring the power of this god into the world again. Illiaph explains to the party that Terron must be stopped before he revives the being, although Illiaph himself plans to do something similar in the future. First things first. The party is suspicious of Illiaph. Not all of what he has said makes perfect sence. Although, why Terron would tell Illiaph of his plan is unknown.
The party rests and moves out with the dig team at dawn. Imzaeras has prepared several demolition barrels of dragonpowder and travels with the team. Reaching the marked spire, the demolition team get to work arranging the explosives, not to collapse the tower into the underground caverns, but to topple it over into an empty sector. The explosives are primed. The party move towards Blackwell on Illiaphs suggestion.
Explosions rock the earth and kick up a massive dust cloud, blocking out the sunlight. The tower topples and the screaches of specters and clash of swords linger after the sounds of falling rock. Blackwell and his squire rush to a shorter tower. Blackwell downs a potion of spider climb as his squire simply jumps down. The party is left coughing and disorientated. They gather themselves and head into the black earth behind Terron.
Caverns honeycomb the earth below the spires like a massive insect colony. The tunnel comes to a large spiral ramp heading deeper into the ground. Rilken lights a torch, allowing himself to see Terrons broadsword and breastplate lying on the floor. His torch ruins everyone elses darkvision and Dael heads further into the cavern to scout ahead. Her darkvision doesn't save her, as the darkness itself clamps down on her arm. Teeth sink into her flesh and she shouts to her companions. Torchlight reveals a large smoky serpentine creature with a ridge of spines down its back. It reels back and unleashes a breath weapon of choking darkness.
Shalazar identifys the horse sized creature as a juvinile green dragon, and Illiaph adds that it's a shadow dragon, a creature who has embraced the energies of the umbreal plane.
The fight is fierce. Dael knows first hand that unless he is lit up, the dragon will be invisible in shadowy darkness. It swoops in and out of the torch light pouncing on Dael and Shalazar. Alistyr casts a Faerie Fire spell preventing the dragon from escaping into the darkness again but the illuminated serpents fierce teeth and claws fling the party like ragdolls and Illiaph is hurled 20 feet off the cliff edge. Alistyr, Rilken and Dael are repeatedly clawed to the ground but Shalazars arcane prowess prove too much for the dragon to overcome, and as he reels back to finish them off with his necrotic breath, the effects of shalazars Acid Arrow spell put him down.
The party is scattered and heavily wounded, but have no time to rest. They must find Terron and put a stop to whatever he is doing down here.
TO BE CONTINUED IN PART 2