Adventure Log: Desnus 12, Year 4712 AR, Oathsday
Our heroes burst into the vestibule of Morningstar Abbey, and were immediately met by a pair of staff-wielding, robed men. Xxamtwiz fled before them, screaming that the party should “STAAAAYYY!” Hugh De Payen went down quickly under their flurry of blows. Maurit and Egon held their ground and managed to finish them off, discovering, in the melee, that the men were, in fact, very big chickens…literally.
XXamtwiz ran back and got Hugh de Payen back on his feet, just as five more of the bird-men came charging out of the nave. The first went down with one of Egon’s crossbow bolts in his head, and another was turned into roast chicken by Guy’s well-placed explosives. XXamtwiz disappeared in the ensuing chaos…
The bird-men finally defeated, the party made their way into the nave, where they found that the church floor had been dug up in many places, and they could still hear the sounds of pick-axes from below. Despite the party’s initial assumptions that the abbey was a church to Sarenrae, the altar of the church held statues to a variety of deities, and showed signs of great age. They poked their heads into the rectory in the back to find Father Dosol cringing on his bed, plugging his ears against the sounds of his church being destroyed. Blocking the rectory door with a large pew, they descended into the basement, Guy in the lead.
Guy snuck down the stairs and nearly tripped over a human-looking man with an incredibly long nose. The man apologized for bumping into Guy, in fluent and very formal Tien. Guy apologized for bumping into the man, with equal formality. They went back and forth, apologizing for quite some time…then Egon shot the man in the back.
Beyond the big-nosed man, two more chicken-men had finished digging a large hole in the back wall of the church basement. Hugh and Maurit rushed them. One drew a long, curved sword, but was quickly dispatched. The other produced a sword of solidified flame in one hand and grabbed a metallic object from the hole with his other. He lasted only slightly longer than his friend, but managed to knock out Hugh again with a well-placed blow before he too fell and bled to death on the stone floor.
As the last bird-man fell, he dropped a strange object, resembling a seven-pointed star the size of a small shield, with each spoke of the star being made from a different Skymetal. As Guy was handling the thing to appraise it, the star exploded, shattering along the seems between the various metals. The seven pieces flew out in all directions, vanishing before striking the walls. In the aftermath, everyone found themselves fully healed and somewhat stronger than before.
Egon quickly dispatched one of the long-nosed fellow, who had also been healed in the explosion, while Maurit and Guy paralyzed and tied up the last living bird-man. They dragged the bird-man upstairs, and, after releasing Father Dosol from the rectory, began to interrogate the both of them. Father Dosol proved generally clueless, apparently only recently freed from his domination by the death of the bird-men, and unaware of anything that had happened in the previous weak. The bird-man was equally unhelpful, either lacking the ability to speak or having taken some sort of vow of silence.
The party learned, from Father Dosol, that the seven-pointed object that they saw was a Sihedron, an ancient symbol of Thassilon representing the seven virtues of rulership: wealth, fertility, honest pride, abundance, eager striving, righteous anger, and well-deserved rest. The specific one they saw, large and made from seven different skymetals, might, in fact, be the original Sihedron, made by Xin, the first emperor of Thassilon. Father Dosol claimed to have no idea that a Thassilonian artifact lay buried beneath his church, but did point out that Morningstar Abbey was the oldest extant church in Varisia, older even than its northern rival Windsong Abbey.
Eventually, after many binary questions, roundabout answers, and some additional coercion, the party learned that the bird-men had come to the abbey to find the Sihedron, traveling all the way from their home in Tien to find it. The bird-men considered the Sihedron to be a holy artifact of their (undisclosed) faith, and had learned of its location beneath the abbey from a book called Milian’s Tome, which their leader had purchased off of a trader from Sandpoint. The bird-man being questioned claimed that, if released, he would return to Magnimar and attempt to locate a contact of the bird-men, a female Pathfinder by the name of Natalya Vankaskerin, at a place called the Shadow. Though, he implied, only their leader had ever spoken to this contact.
Exhausted from the lengthy, and complicated, interrogation, the party went aside to discuss what they should do now…and how to dispose of the bodies and their prisoner…