Hellrunners

The Waves of Fate (or) Ship Out of Luck

From the Diary of Miladriel Aeravir, 12 Lharvion 998 YK

Current Mood: RAGE
Current Music: Right Next Door to the Demon Wastes – 333 Lunatic Lane

Dear Diary,

I write this on the soon to be shambles of what my old slave driver, Jon Kraeken, called his summer home on the island of Greentarn in the Lhazar Principalities. While I’ll regret destroying this comfy wingback chair, there is actually a reason why I decided to go all “hotel room” on his place, and it isn’t alcohol and Zil “pixie dust”.

It started the day before. Well… the week before. I was about ready to do a few appearances in Karrnath, promote the merch, do a few interviews, the usual when I got a message from Jon. All it said was: “I’m calling in that favor now Milly.” Nessie wasn’t too happy about that, but she gets 10% of everything else I do so she’d be fine. There wasn’t going to be a major tournament anytime soon and hell If I’m going to chip a nail fighting some idiot with his daddy’s old Longsword.

I find myself seasick on a ship out in the Lhazar Principalities. Still, it was a nice place all told. “Maybe if we finished quickly,” I thought at the time, “I could hit up Port Krez and have some real fun for a change.” The Gaslamp district is fun now and again, but it’s hard to gamble and drink when half the time people mistake you for the help.

On the ship were other poor bastards, who probably signed a devil’s bargain with Jon. Lin was there too. Good to see she hadn’t perished in the woods, after all. She still isn’t much of a talker, but I like to think we’re on the same wavelength. Alain d’Tharask was there. It’s a bit of a secret, diary, but I used to have a 333 Lunatic Lane poster not too long ago. Seems like a nice guy in person, not like the way the Skywayerati say. There was a ringmaster type named Kit Reinhart, which I can only remember because she likes to refer to herself in the third person. The last guy is a bit of a mystery. Sean(?), I think, seems the shiftiest of the group.

Stomach still uneasy, Jon explained that he was looking for a blueprint to some device…frankly I lost interest until he said “extra-planar”. Is this guy trying to open a planar portal? And this talk of madness and the Far Realm… what the hell is he up to? Unfortunately, he didn’t get too much farther when some creatures from the Far Realm… well Xoriat, attacked us.

At the same time of the attack, spears of coral punctured holes in the ship, as if we were being used for target practice. Gibbering creatures plus my illness made things really fuzzy for a while, but I got away and steadied my aim and popped a few shots while everyone else competently (for the nmost part) took care of things. Only thing that was awful was when one of the tentacled floaty things blew up in my face. Man, I haven’t thrown up so immediately since I was seven and I ate some bad journeybread Nancielle gave me.

Anyways, we had the creatures almost subdued when the boat snapped in half and we lost consciousness for a while. When we woke up we found ourselves on some old docks. A snappy magical automoton was turning on lights and switches. I noticed the colored levers and lights and began to work them when some sharks decided to play with us. I did some running around and yelling to Lin to operate the one lever I couldn’t reach. After a few tries we turned off the machine and opened an underwater door.

It was at this time that I and Alain were grabbed by sharkes and dragged under. Lin followed suit and she and Alain took care of their shark while a carfule sword in the mouth gave me a chance to get away. After finishing off the sharks, we swam our way towards the now open door.

The door led to a temple filled with large holes and an altar. It was at this point that I freshened up and tried to wring the water out of my ears. Luckily that feeling didn’t last as some overgrown lobster came up and attacked us. We made short work of it and found a holy book on the altar:

“Enlightenment: Contentment through Detachment – Revised Edition” by White Lotus Publishing. This was only odd in that, as a hermit, she didn’t have a relationship with this publishing company. Also odd, she never wrote a revised edition. I flipped through it seeing if they added some dieting and fashion tips, but no such luck.

The room behind the altar was a natural harbor and some losers in shoddy black robes (is that… terry cloth!?). They asked if we had met “Herbert” and, hoping they didn’t see the shell fragments on our clothes, we played dumb. They let us on their ship and told us they were going to go visit Jon at his summer home, obviously unaware of who we were and where Jon was at the moment (which was… fuck if I know, dead I hope).

Worst. Cultists. Ever.

We finally got to Jon’s house. While the cultsts were pissing their pants, I slipped from sight and tried to get in the back. unfourtunately the window jammed. I should have used the front door, which is what Alain did after convincing the cultists they should just turn tail. After finding a few things here, I declared our work done and will proceeded to rip the room to shreds. If I ever find that gnome (assuming he isn’t shark bait), I’m going to give him a piece of my mind. and if he’s finally dead, at least I got his damage deposit revoked.

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tholias

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