As Far As You Can Tell – Episode 24
The party continues into the tower. Upon reaching the door, the party learns that it’s magically sealed, but Veil is able to unlock it. Light from within spills out. The party is standing within a small foyer featuring a staircase leading both up and down. In the foyer there is a single coat hanging on a rack. It’s a nice coat befitting a noble gentleman. The walls, floors, and ceiling of the structure are made of the same material as the bridge and stone outside, which one could assume is granite. There is a table with two glasses.
The first room on the main floor is 20 feet high and the room smells fresh. The party continues upwards, and the next room they encounter is a sitting room. There is a desk flanked by a chair and a section of the wall that is a window. An unseen servant walks past the party. The third floor opens to a small kitchenette and attached dining area. A recently made steak with asparagus is waiting on the table. The party continues up the stairs and hear someone on the next floor. The area is lit, but everyone is unsure of the source of the light. This room is darker than others. Amiddle aged human man sits in the room. He appears of Isril descent, with blonde hair and blue eyes, and looks as if he could be a brother to the man in the photo from Mazie. The main is fairly well dressed and appears to have no weapons on his person. The room itself seems to be a magic experimentation room. He greets the party by saying, “It’s taken you a long time to get up the stairs.” He is named Antonias. He knows who the party is, claiming to have been informed by the man upstairs — the man that he works for. He says that the time is up for something about the party’s cowardly actions that are taking them away from the hands of justice.
Antonias keeps track of this town, but doesn’t know why the townsfolk stand around the tower during the night. He assumes that it has something to do with the man upstairs. He refers to Veil as the ‘failure’ and mentions something about removing his mistakes. The man upstairs is also the master of darkness and the lord of darkness. He wants to kill Veil, and the whole party, really. Antonias signed up for this job willingly. His room features no personal effects. The party decides to leave the tower, and on the way out they realize that when Antonias is speaking he is mouthing the word “help”, and when doing so his mannerisms would change. Raziel notices that his ring is the same color as the crystal on top of the tower.
While trying to leave, combat ensues and the party is unable to pull the ring off of his hand. Before resorting to killing him, the party successfully cuts off his ring finger and Hove heals the wound, then Raziel carries his unconscious body out of the tower and to the inn. During combat there were loud beasts in the lower levels of the tower that Violet is able to successfully web, but upon arriving at the inn, the party hears the sounds of large beasts making their way across the bridge and up the hill of the town. Large beasts of shadow lay waste to the town.
Back to the Keep…
The party makes it back to the keep and Antonias is still unconscious after the eight day trip. They take him to Matron’s room and try to take the ring to the room, but the ring cannot be pushed through the magical barrier. After two days of being in the room, Antonias awakens with a start and pulls off the ring of sustenance that the party placed on him. Antonias only knows the party’s faces and that they took him from the tower, but knows nothing else of what transpired. He does remember Dewdrop. He is happy that the party removed the black ring.
Antonias whispers a prayer to Matron and then tells the party a little more of what he remembers. The dark one calls himself Aerilis and he could probably track the ring here, but not immediately. Antonias has been controlled for 14 years. His brother and father are also being controlled and wearing rings. Antonias has been at the keep before, four years ago, to get the scepter and materials. The scepter acts as the beacon of power linking all of the rings together. The scepter couldn’t be corrupted without significant power. They put the scepter in the museum because security was tight and had Veil steal it when it was needed. The crystal on top of the tower was the first attempt at mind control. Antonias only remembers bits and pieces of his life while controlled. He knows that his brother, Velus Snowtulip, stayed in Anchorage, and that his father, Lucias Snowtulip, handles other matters in Dragonheart.
Violet inspects the ring, and as far as she can tell, it’s not magical or evil. She tells Luca about the ring and he doesn’t want to be involved and leaves the keep.
Raziel is pleasantly surprised to find he has a new baby owlbear.