Lightcrash (Patrick) and Huan (Tyler) were expanding their show from their new quarters in a nice loft in the Singing Koi block.
There was an increased presence of Imperial troops in Kuan Loon, and the monks checked in with their rocherd friend Na Li Ka to discover that there was a new threat in the city.
The Small Swords society had sent adventurers over to the Yellow Springs Island to raid the 1000 Pagodas, and they angered some dark master over there, who had a devil bat assassin named Chan Yi at its command.
Chan Yi was able to somehow teleport his whole base, and he moved it to Kuan Loon to punish the Jade Empress for the presumption of her emmisaries; they had taken position on the South Palace first, stealing the porcelain wares specifically made for that location. They had jumped twice more since then, each time facing waves of attacks from the Small Swords; the Empress demanded they clean up their own mess this time, or she would revoke their license to raid the island.
Na Li Ka had once hoped to join the Small Swords, but life doesn’t work out the way you want sometimes. The monks decided they would check in with the Small Swords and see if they could get involved.
Small Swords Society
The monks got an audience with the Master of Arms Ruten, who saw past their showmanship and antics to trust the violent danger they represented as chaos monks. Ruten told them the devil bat’s pagoda was currently sitting on the Tranquil Trail Thinkers’ Guild, and the guild was not allowing any Small Swords society members inside. Therefore, it was up to the applicants to deal with the threat, and any survivors would be inducted into the guild.
They met about twenty hopefuls, most of whom were unfit to be henchmen, and did some rudimentary skills testing. When it was time to go, 15 were willing to accompany them. They went to the Tranquil Trail Thinkers’ Guild, passing through the Imperial troops and welcomed inside.
Huan had a brief flashback of being here before, and screaming, but he shook it off.
They were escorted in to meet with the leader of the Guild, Tynabi. He explained that the devil bat’s forces retaliated hard both other places the pagoda teleported, and while their forces were severely depleted by those battles, he did not wish to take that damage to this esteemed building, so he would not allow the Small Swords access. However, he was deferential to Huan, and allowed the chaos monks to lead their own assault. He also warned them there were many traps in the hostile lair. He also warned them that there was probably a threat from one of the devil bat’s commanders left, along with some bandits.
They were warned that if they tried to leave the pagoda once they entered, unless they had proof they had destroyed the devil bat, they would be killed by the defenders as possible shapeshifted or enslaved minions of the devil bat.
Four armored swordsmen intently guarded the entry to the pagoda that merged with the roof of this pagoda. Looking out the windows, the monks saw there was a squat central structure, and a tower off to the side, and the whole thing looked painted in tar, solid, horrible, and dark.
They identified three of the more promising henchmen types to stay with them, and the rest they sent up the steps into the pagoda–with a special edge.
Lightcrash prepared an altar made of a mirror and a spell for them to carry.
- Attracting Altar. 1 minute to set up. Attracts 2 HD per level within 1 mile per level for 10 minutes per level.
He tuned it for humans who served a dark master, aiming for the bandits in the structure above. This would draw them out! He also lied to his troops, saying it would provide some protection.
Meanwhile, Lightcrash and Huan took their 3 promising henchmen outside the building, climbing around and up to find another way in.
Into the Devil Bat Pagoda
They found a shaft leading up into the pagoda, but it was 15 feet away over a 120 foot drop. Fortunately Lightcrash had just the spell to cast, and he carried the rope and a grappling hook up the shaft and secured it.
- Serpent Chariot. Cast as a free action, astral snakes coalesce around the feet and allow 20 feet of three dimensional movement for 1 round.
As they tried to follow by climbing the rope, one of them lost his grip and fell. The other two made it up into the octagonal room. Chain Pot was one, bearing a cook pot as a weapon. The other was Dramo, who announced he would have his name remembered, as he braved the climb and was a full-fledged warrior with them! They told him to open the door out of the room, and a gust of chlorine gas burned the meat from his bones as his corpse hit the floor; everyone else leaped out of the way and got to some cover before the gas drained out of the shaft in the center of the room.
They went to the next room and found a door leading to a round art room depicting the victory of raiding devil bats. They detected the trigger to open a secret door, and also discovered it was a trap that dropped the floor out. Lightcrash clung to the wall and triggered it, then climbed inside, and the other two braved the leap across, then Lightcrash found the switch to close the trap.
They continued on, and Huan crept ahead when they came to a pair of arches. He spotted the devil bat sleeping, hanging from the ceiling above the sight line, in a dead end. Waving the others back, he trusted his life to a pebble.
- Petrifying Shard. Cast on a stone, anyone or anything touched saves vs. Will or turns to stone. On an inanimate target, 5 square feet per level.
Huan tossed the pebble up to touch the devil bat, and the spell worked, turning the monster to stone before it could wake and attack! They knocked the stone bat down, and triggered a secret door.
Following the corridor beyond, they found a treasure room with the Empress’s porcelain! They pocketed a teacup, 3 saucers, and a sugar bowl. Then the whole fortress twitched, and they realized the devil bat was the one anchoring it to this dimension.
Time to Go
They raced down the stairs, and struck off the stone statue’s head with a crowbar. Retracing their steps, they banged through the door leading into the main area, where they found that their troops had bravely held off the bandits.
They rolled the stone head down the stairs first, to show that they killed the devil bat, then they went strutting down–and the fortress twitched again, so they broke into a run. The fortress tore loose of the world and crumpled up into the sky.
Downstairs, Tynabi thanked them with a gem amulet worth 10 gold for the two chaos monks, and they were allowed to leave, past the soldiers, through the city, and into the Small Swords compound.
There they were give 50 gold pieces, and another 50 for the stone head. All of the survivors were awarded the red sash of membership in the Small Swords Society.
They took some of their wealth and asked the Tranquil Trail Thinker’s Guild for patronage to get a small theater going, and the Guild agreed, as long as some of their weird songs and poetry could be part of the show. (That was fine all around, Lightcrash acquiesced in his role as producer.)
They also celebrated, with Lightcrash losing significant funds gambling (and almost running afoul of his yakkish rival.) Huan’s celebrations were cut short by the need to rescue a homeless orphan boy from a terrible life in the flesh pits; he legally adopted little Khalid. They also kept Chain Pot around; he demanded respect as an adventurer, but was also happy to cook for them.
Spells for next time, Lightcrash first:
- Blossoming Call. Compel 6 months of growth per level from plants in a favorable way for 5 feet of plants per level.
- Levitating Steed. Ride something living or dead, it can fly for 1 minute (10 rounds) per level. Speed is 20 feet per round per level.
- Grasping Chaos. The target is engulfed in a puff of chaos. The target must make a save (difficulty 10, any stat) to be immobilized. If the save is failed, the target is immobilized and also takes 1d6 damage per level that ignores armor. The spell works on 1 target or round per level; at 3rd level it could work on 3 targets for 1 round each, or 1 target for 3 rounds, or 1 target for 1 round and 1 target for 2 rounds, etc.