13th of Kuthona of 4707
The heroes descend the stairs as Ysermil continues to check for traps. Calach opens the door and they observe a large aquatic troll wading in a large pool in the damp room. A combat ensues. After knocking the it unconscious, the party notices that it continues to heal. They continue to attack it with their weapons to no avail, as it continues to regenerate. Calach finally castes a burning hands spell, killing it. They continue forward to find a fantastically detailed scale model of Skull’s Crossing using actual human skulls in an adjacent room. As the party approaches, the scorpion-like statue made of human skulls lumbers to life and a battle ensues. It was a harrowing battle, as Bruiser’s neck was caught between the pincer claws of the beast. The mêlée ends with the heroes victorious, but bruised. After searching the model, they find a human skull embedded with a magical ion stone.
Next the heroes find a narrow chamber that ends in 2 curved alcoves each enclosed by a portcullis. A winch next to each provides a way to raise and lower the gates. Beyond each, a circle of runes glows with a faint orange light on the floor. Inside the circle to the west is a pile of crimson ash, while inside the circle to the east is curled what appears to be a long-dead devil, its flesh taut and dry on its bones. The heroes enter the room and hear the hoarse whispers of the creature plea for “freedom.” After some verbal parlay by the heroes to attempt to wrested information from the creature without freeing it, they decide to leave it. They agree to split up to search the rest of the dam to try to find some other way of operating it.
While searching, the entire dam rumbles with perhaps what appears to be the motion of some sort of massive gears. The heroes find a drained Calach in the previous room, and in place of the diabolic creature on the other side, they find a pile of crimson ash. When they exit the dam, they find that it is functioning, mat least for now. Com uses a spell to help Calach with the effects.
The heroes decide to return to Turtleback as a stop before heading to the Shimmerglens to investigate the disappearance of Lamatar – the leader of the Black Arrows. It is still dark out and they are tired. After one hour of travel, they set up camp during a thunderstorm. They are waylaid by a giant bearing familiar runes in the middle of a watch. The battle ensues in the shadows lighted by the campfire, magical lights from Calach, and lightning. They emerge victorious. As they return to the tent to settle in, Ysermil is seen leaving. Barrik asks him where he was going and he responds that he was going to relieve himself. It was the last they would see of him that night. A few hours into the watch, Barrie makes 2 perimeter checks using his darkvision in hopes of finding some sign of Ysermil but returns empty handed. The party agrees to take up the search in the morning.