mast cure wounds
Smoke on the Water
The gang arrives on the shore to see their ship on fire. They are freaking out, thinking of all those great NPCs they love, like Guldo from the Ginyu Force who they kind of hate I think but kind of saved from being enslaved by Hespero; Teo Ramsen, who is kind of Livius’s employee but also his training manager at the same time, but no one likes him; Barty Cromwellus who became captain after those harpies ate the captain; Winona Pona, the new first mate who is just trying to get by with no one noticing that she keeps eating all of the graham crackers; Boatboy Bucephalus who loves to fix ships, I mean just loves it, and knows the difference between carpentry and carpetry (which isn’t a word); Salty Sabrina the weapons engineer, who is about to be your new best friend with the monster hunting; Hungry Hamboy Hugo who is running low on ham and running high on liquor because he just found the stash hidden by the old captain (and he’s sharing, don’t worry, he understands the importance of morale); Know-it-all Nausicaa who feels like she really has got the hang of these islands by this point; and finally of course everyone’s best friend, our jaunty hatted gal, the skeletal alchemist, who would never betray you or make you second-guess her intentions.
The One Hundred Years Speech
Time stops! The Unspeakable One appears before you, worms stacked up in a trenchcoat, I mean a cloak. He says a prewritten speech to Mallory because he’s nervous you guys, and he says:
I am called the unspeakable one and the many-bodied, for the smallest larva contains every multitude
Whisperbottom, I knew you were worthy. You found the Deathless One’s book. These are but the scrawlings of a mad woman, who had to die and return to even have a thin film of understanding of what is here today. But she has mocked me for the last time.
He points a hand behind him, where the ship would be.
All of the Whisperbottoms before you were but trial runs for who you are today. Even the one who helped Natalya. Your ancestors came to me generation after generation, century after century, and failed. But you will succeed. You saw through time, did you not? You saw this fire. You saw their deaths. You saw how my guardian could be destroyed.
The book you hold is the pinnacle of what you can achieve as you are now. All knowledge is within me. Within my book. Come with me and you will know everything. All of the mysteries of the universe. Time will be laid out before you as a map and you will be a god among these mortals. Leave these petty fools to their own devices. That flaming ship is nothing compared to the fires of the stars beyond.
I can take you out of this demiplane prison. It is an easy task. The Hidimba cannot contain me.
I can even break the curse he has over you. I will destroy the Hidimba. The one who is called Hespero. I will do this, if you submit.
Man, he just spills that plot everywhere, gang. Lap it up. It’s pouring this episode.
Weirdly Mallory doesn’t betray his friends. Imagine that.
Mangler D, MVP
The gang fights the Unspeakable One, who has some fun powers. A hulk appears, but he gets to do more this time, so good for him, and those manglers just weave in and out of the heroes’ spaces and lay it down nasty with a 50% chance on the recharge? Woof. One of them even gets away! They were the real stars.
Nasty grub monsters come in, but they’re just there to impose disadvantage on everyone who isn’t an aberration and also the Unspeakable One loves it when you fail saves because he gets some of that good, good worm karma. But the gang figures it out, even after being blinded and restrained by worms and like half the team going down. And the Unspeakable One peaces out and blasts everyone with necrotic damage (Livius: “lol”) but he gets squashed out in worm form.
Just a couple skill checks and you’re good
The heroes then run away to the burning ship to bail it out. They succeed in not letting anyone die but fail in preventing all damage to the ship. The Kodama are also afraid of worms and so appear on the ship to hand the heroes a zone 3 charm! Hooray! The mast has to be salvaged and the gang risks violating Cloud Giant airspace to get back to Lemba for repairs.
They hand the Alchemist the book, Interpretations of the Many-Bodied, and she reads all day. The heroes make a stop at Osteros, no time to chat or have dinner, because they have to also just get right back to Lemba, but the Dragonborn are really happy to see them again, but understand that the ship is right fucked.
“No time to talk, Abe, gotta bust open this plot”
The heroes reunite with Abraham and Baltsaros, and the fairies who do not help, even though they are begging for a chance to snatch you all into a contract. I mean you must owe them something for taking care of Abe and Baltsaros.
The Alchemist remembers that she is Natalya! Raise your hand and tell me how fast you figured that out. Tell the truth!
Natalya theorizes that Hespero has been torturing generations of people, especially those in the demiplane. She also states that it is likely that you all descend from people who failed or fought against the Rakshasa in the past and Livius recalls reading that Rakshasas take vengeance as a multigenerational thing. Raise your hand and tell me how long it took you to figure that one out too!
She points to the following evidence:
- Sora might be related to the Dragonborn Nemmonis clan who fought against the Hidimba on Osteros
- Casimir might be related from the tibbits on Hama who fought on both sides of The War of the Devils and the Dead
- Abraham’s ancestor definitely fought against the Burr, who you guys figured out was the Hidimba and Hespero. You guys also met Abe’s ancestor in the labyrinth, who died soon after meeting him. Theo and Fornorio were the other two who fought The Burr and The Lich of the Godsbody. Theo was flung into the future, to where you guys are, in the labyrinth, and Fornorio was an early The Ambassador experiment, who you guys freed and is now somewhere in Hespero’s mansion. Hobbes has already revealed that Hespero was behind the murder of Abe’s master.
- Mallory is reincarnated from the first Whisperbottom who worked with Natalya to steal the Hidimba’s and the Unspeakable One’s secrets of undeath, power, and immortality
- Hespero is known to hire dopplers and impress them into service, people like Hobbes, but the connection is unclear
- Rho is imbued with the power of the islands and the Hidimba’s inability to control the islands made him cut the islands out of the world out of spite
Livius and Nahk have no clues as to why Hespero would be out to get them.
Please recall from Regarding Demiplane Engines
Demiplane engines are used to keep parts of a plane in a pocket dimension for reference, storage, or long-term infliction of suffering. Conventional demiplanes can be created via powerful spells, but ripping part of a plane into its own demiplane requires immense power and security measures to prevent escape and ensure optimal torture.
All the major hidden plot turns are getting revealed and you still have like five islands to go!
Sora slowly realizes that every single person who works for Hespero is probably descended from someone who fought against him or failed him. She does not tell the crew. Too much of a bummer.
When asked who she will side with, Natalya signs that she considers the heroes all close friends, best friends even, and she is afraid that her brother the Deathless One is far gone. “Maybe we can still salvage his mind.”
“But Hespero and Aramestes treat this like a game. Aramestes gets stronger and stronger and kills Hespero, but the Rakshasa comes back, and it’ll keep going, until everyone becomes the Deathless One, until no one can be manipulated by Hespero again.”
Dude is barely in the story and he breaks his legs off-screen
Five days pass in the port as Bucephalus and the sailors try to fix the sails. They succeed in getting the ship able to move at full speed again. So that’s good! Ready for monster-hunting, which is Natalya’s suggestion.
Also this happened off screen but Guldo and Teo Ramsen decide to fuck off and live on Lemba with the fairies. Good luck to them, amirite? I’m sure they won’t get charmed and enslaved by Princess Roswyn and her court. Oh wait, they already did that to Melody and the kids from Findalos who brought the hag? Yeah they’re screwed. You guys see one day that Guldo and Teo are dancing with the fairies. The next morning Teo is still dancing, his legs broken and ruined as he moves feebly in the dirt to the discordant tunes of the laughing fey folk. Guldo drags Teo back to the ship and decides that maybe not, maybe we’ll just chill right here.
The Findalos kids are mindlessly serving the fairies, treated like tables or footstools, getting pelted with fruit, but not minding any of it because fairies do not give a shit.
Abraham and Baltsaros? They’re just trying to lay low on the other side of the island. Those fairies do not fuck around.
When the heroes are on the island though, the fairies steer clear. They will not fuck with you, due to help you provided before, but also they can just sense that you would annihilate their entire island. In fact, you could probably rescue those kids fairly easily, by force (but never be allowed back) or with a deal.
Hot springs episode! But off-screen!
After eating some fairy fruit they mistook for a ration fruit from the ship while investigating and trying to fix the Archdruid’s Fountain, Casimir, Nahk, Abraham, and Baltsaros disappear into the Feywild, but Casimir is in his cat shape the whole time. It’s an awesome adventure that we all miss out on. Truly the hot springs episode we all deserve. If you three can each come up with a singular plot point, I might reward you with something that you kept from the Feywild.
The others decide not to wait for their return and dive right into hunting a monster.
For the monster hunt: Don’t forget! You have those harpoons from the fish folk of Morodos. You remember those guys, the ones that said glub glub all the time.
Don’t forget! Nahk has his silver glaive and Mallory has that weird thing that lets him summon demons or something? Uh oh.
Also the sorrowsworn, those creepy monsters in the depths? Those are all the people who tried to summon the Unspeakable One and failed and became aberrations. Just putting a bow on that one.
Also Natalya knows a shit ton about these islands and can help you out with info. Knows less about the beasts though because Hespero / Hidimba picked them out after she escaped his employ.
Previous Episode: the seer could swap itself with a hulk as a reaction so thanks a lot
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