Apotheosis

The Infernal Vault

A decade ago, the Decklands family, a house of Chelish nobles, were exiled from Absalom for treason. Their fate left several questions unanswered. When an unnamed agent in Cheliax investigating the family’s long history and exile from the City at the Center of the World ends up murdered, an ally of the Agents of the Varlokkur appeals for them to investigate the recently discovered Deckland Vaults in Absalom to see what connection the old family home might have to the murdered operative.

As the murders of religious figures continues throughout Absalom, the agents feel they have no choice but to pursue their own line of investigation. Tracking down the only witness to one of the murders, they learn that the suspected killer is a figure that appears in a tempest of storm and thunder. Using Alberts magic, the group infiltrate a meeting of several spokespeople from the various faiths. However, the agents are surprised to find Alexis in attendance. The diviner quickly she’s through his operatives disguises, but rather than chastising his agents he agrees that he has kept them in the dark too long. Alexis confesses to the group that he suspects whoever is behind this string of murders is also responsible for a stint of similar deaths a decade ago. The wizard further admits that his sister was one of the original victims and her death was instrumental in Alexis applying to join the Varlokkur and creating the role they now occupy. Despite their ability, Alexis admits that neither he nor the agents are up to the task of locating and defeating the killer. However, the diviner hopes that the favor the agents have been gathering across Absalom may grant them the resources and manpower to finally locate and defeat the criminal, unhindered by the bad blood resulting from Absaloms ‘Shadow War’. The heroes agree to see the plan through while the churches take defensive steps to protect their own.

With Alexis’ words still ringing in his head, Albert pays a visit to Artore, one of the tutors at his school. According to the sorcerer, several of the Chelish operatives in the city have ill intent, looking to unearth an old vault containing the secrets to the cities defenses. Assembling his fellow agents, the young wizard and his associates travel to the Decklands estate.

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It quickly becomes clear something is off about the estate and the team make the decision to head inside. The agents entrance is greeted with an ambush from a mercenary company known as the ‘Devils Claw’. Sadly for the mercenaries, neither they or the vaults traps pose any threat to the elite agents. Within a few minutes the heroes subdue the thugs and reach the vault proper.

Within the Decklands sealed vault the group discover Celeena Deckland and her hellhound pet. The vengeful daughter admits to seizing the plans to Absaloms defense to avenge her wrongfully disgraced father, before launching an attack on the agents.

A vicious fight ensues throughout the vault as Celeena brings are powerful sorceries to bare against the team. Nevertheless, victory looks certain for the agents until the vindictive spellcaster uses her magic to dominate A’hymhus mind, turning the deadly archer against his own allies. The heroes desperately try to subdue their dominated ally as he fights alongside the sorceress, with Lothaire acting as a bulwark. However, Set’nah’s arrows prove to many for the dwarf, and he collapses following a hail of bow fire. Eventually, the other agents manage to subdue both Set’nah and Celeena, but when Behnam reaches Lothaire side he finds that the dwarf sacrificed his life to protect them.

Stricken with grief and trying to surpress their anger a Set’nah, half the group escort Celeena to the watch, while the others report what has happened to Alexis. The diviner regroups with his agents at Bundins shrine, following a brief ritual they ask Bundins spirit if he wishes to return to life, but the dwarf feels it is his time. Saddened by their loss, and conflicted that the blood stains the hands of one of their own, the group carry out a brief service for their fallen ally and place him to rest alongside his brother. Alexis advises the heroes to take time to grieve, but that he will soon need their services.

Alberts reports of their pyretic victory to Artore, who thanks the wizard and the others for their help. Upon leaving, Albert destroys the retrieved defense plans to prevent them falling into the wrong hands.

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