Ladies in Hades and the Dyval Wears Prada
Journal - Trent - Entry 28
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This is what I believe to be the “sequence of events” which have led us to this point. I’ve tried to remove as many assumptions as I can. I hope to discuss this with the group and the mysterious naked man once I’ve finished sorting this out.
We followed the Deevil Reagent Baaz to the Demon-City of New Calgary. He was in possession of a powerful magical artifact. According to The Codex of Souls, this artifact was supposed to be in the possession of and guarded by a god, (possibly Moomoo of the Babylonian pantheon). But it was not obviously not in that god’s possession any longer.
While we were there in the Demon city, war broke out between the Deevils (from Dyval) and the Demons (from Hades). This fighting, according to The Codex of Souls, is going to continue to escalate until all of existence is destroyed by it. At the start of this war, in New Calgary, the Deevil Baaz used the artifact sword in his possession to kill a goddess.”
Some of us have already experienced the side-effects of this war upon their home dimensions.
Through subterfuge Baaz then allowed the artifact sword to fall into our hands. We had an audience with the gods and were told they did not want the artifacts back since they had their own problems to deal with now. They gave us information gleaned from The Codex of Souls before leaving:
1) There are seven of these artifacts somehow tied to seven sins, which were to be safeguarded by the gods in preparation for the end of the world.
2) There are seven demonic beings named, but their association with any side is not discussed.
3) There are seven virtues mentioned which may or may not have artifacts associated with them.
4) There is mention of seven ‘demon’ plagues which will be reach across space and time to impact every world, universe and dimension.
One of those plagues was called the ‘Tongues’ plague, and it seems probable that it’s affecting the people here.
After the gods made their speech and left us mortals to our own devices, we made our preparations and then set about trying to learn what we could from this artifact.
Jescha picked up the artifact, and heard someone talking to her. A portal then appeared, we all went through it, and blacked out. When we awoke it was in the desert and the naked man was with us but he was unable to speak until we used the magic spell of Tongues on him.
The naked man either could not or would not tell us anything, but something Jescha heard or saw when she held that artifact made her believe that we had to help him. She didn’t know how to, though. None of us did.
We followed him into an ancient city in chaos. The naked man walked straight to the ziggurat in the center of the city unmolested and unnoticed. When he stopped at the base of the ziggurat steps, we were attacked by Chaos demons. Once we repelled them the naked man climbed the stairs to the top chamber and went inside, ignoring everything which was outside.
Outside the top chamber was a woman laid out on an altar, inside of an active magic circle. She appeared neither alive nor dead and was in fact in a state of suspended animation. Her appearance was similar to the goddess Ishtar but we did not verify whether or not ‘she’ was under any illusions.
When we followed the naked man into the room we found that he had stopped and knelt in front of the throne. The throne had a skeleton wearing a crown sitting in it, and arranged around the room in positions of prayer or worship were dozens more skeletons, all seemingly people who pre-date the people here.
Both the throne and the magic circle outside contained the words “Drink blood. Live forever. All will perish.”
James tried to touch the crown and became possessed by some female being. Both his actions and his recollection after the event seem to confirm this. He was restrained and someone took the crown from the skeleton on the throne and placed it on the head of the woman in suspended animation outside.
At that point she began to bleed form every pore of her body and would not stop. She was removed from the altar and it was destroyed but that did not stop it. When we used negation magic on her the bleeding did stop.
The naked man was oblivious to all of this. When the crown was removed he got up, knocked the skeleton aside that was in the throne, and sat there himself. At that time the skeletons all throughout the room stood up and began clapping.
The ceiling of the room had a celestial map inscribed in it which appeared to direct the observer’s attention to seven locations around the world.
The woman still outside and wearing the crown woke up, had a conversation with Pall Mall, and disappeared. His response was to open up a portal himself and also disappear. Six days later when we met up with him again, he claimed not to remember those details.
Those of us still at the ziggurat went to meet with McGreggor at the tower. We came to the Gate of Ishtar but declined to walk through it – it was radiating a magic of some kind that I did not wish us to be exposed to without knowing more about it.
On our way to the tower, somehow, time wasn’t flowing right during our journey. Six days managed to pass during the journey, though it should have been considerably shorter, and felt considerably shorter.
In the tower we met the weaver spider demon called Widow. She seemed interested in finding a king, perhaps the naked man on the throne? We told her he was in that throne room.
The rooms near the top of the tower were filled with magically animated tongues.
At the top of the tower was Ishtar, dead and missing her tongue, and she was magically disguised to look like Marduk. When the naked man saw her, he wept.
There was a Pandemonium Deevil also in the tower who had disguised herself as Sonja. She appeared to have been tortured. We pulled her free, intending to question her. We brought her and the dead goddess back to the throne room.
James used his blood to re-activate the magic circle outside the throne room. His blood flowed into the throne room and when it hit the naked man, it seemed to make him more aware. Then the prison-light-energy-magic beams started to form and we escaped before we were trapped. This throne room now seemed eerily similar to the room we found in the Tolkeen library, though the time dilation is reversed.
Widow busted her way into the throne room. Illusions were placed on the battle but I saw through them. The naked man withstood Widow’s attack and defeated her. As she was defeated, though, the Pandemonium Deevil who was left in the room when we ran out assumed Widow’s form and escaped through the same tunnel the spider demon used to enter.
That’s the highlights, without any of the fine details I’ve already recorded in earlier entries. Time to talk with the naked man and see if he’s come enough to his senses to be able to shed some light on these events, or his own past, or anything, really.
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