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Nefeshti can see that this will not be an easy decision so she encourages you to sleep on it. A miracle is powerful magic and should not be taken lightly certainly. She can wait to leave until the morning or if you would rather save your miracles until the assault on Pale Mountain, she will bestow them when she returns.
Varkata gets properly soused to draw on inspiration from the Drunken God and soon enough a doggerel of questionable worth slur from her lips.
"There once was a Kelmerane crew,
Alright, it sounds like Karethas is going for Greater Spell Control (or whatever you might call it- +4 to level checks.)
I just think that a magic carpet has to happen at some point so I encourage that.
Communal spells... well, Planar Adaptation suits the obvious end game well, but wouldn't be of immediate use. Though what I might allow is that the PC that took that wish could use it as Resist energy (non-communal) CL 11 here on the prime and then spread the love as Communal Adaptation on whatever plane you land.
Varkata Steeleye wrote:
Her brow furrows for a moment, "Would it be possible for that miracle to be cast when you return?"
The Peri smiles. "Of course. We would just need to do it before we approach Pale Mountain. The wishwarp would make it very dangerous."
As if reading Karethas' mind, she continues. "I do not know if a miracle could overcome the wishwarp. It would be like blowing into a storm, but perhaps one could wish for great control of your magic and have better success in your efforts."
Nefeshti's radiant face darkens as she speaks her enemy's name. "Jhavhul is no typical efreeti. It is no accident that he has recruited among the followers of the Rough Beast. Have you been to Pale Mountain? Yes, I see. Then perhaps you know what lies below the House of the Beast? Jhavhul is half-mad with lust- for power and for Ymeri, the most powerful being on the Plane of Fire. To impress her and prove his merit as her consort, he would do the unthinkable: resurrect the Spawn of Rovagug!"
"Katapesh was not always a desert waste. Millenia ago, in the Age of Destiny, the pharaohs summoned armies of genies- djinn, shaitan, marid and efreet- to build their cities and fight in their armies. We helped them take the green lands of the south and after Ancient Osirion fell, some stayed and ruled these fair lands in peace for millenia more ruling jann and human alike. But it was not to last for the land rumbled and a great heat rose from below to dry out the land and burn the fields. Xotani the Firebleeder, rose from the pit and lit the night with a thousand thousand fires. The green lands of what would become Katapesh, the peaceful towns, the gentle people, all turned to cinder and dust. It took a hundred wands- the greatest wizards of all Garund- to finally defeat it and the fool thinks that he could control it."
"Jhavhul built the House of the Beast on the ash heap that covers Xotani's remains. He lures in the wrathful and grants them one wish for their own use in return for two wishes disguised as prayers to the Destroyer. In truth, these prayers seek to resurrect the Spawn Xotani and bind it to Jhavhul's will. With a thousand wishes he could resurrect the Firebleeder, but not a million wishes will grant him power over it. It would turn Garund to ash, kingdoms burn, millions would die..."
"We trapped Jhavhul just before he succeeded last time, but those wishes remain active warping reality around Pale Mountain. How many more wishes does he need? Fifty? A dozen? We must move quickly- I have been gone centuries or more. You know this place better than I now. Free Kelmarane. Gather any who would join our cause. I will seek the unseen and rally those that remain."
"I have been told that this is now an Age of Lost Omens, but I sense this is your destiny. When I was Queen of these lands, I called my closest viziers and generals the Templars of the Winds and even now I feel their presence within you: Andrathi, my warm and worldly South Wind, is here in Spooky and Vardishal, the icy North Wind, somehow is linked with the Tempest staff. Perhaps it is just memories of old stirred by returning to this place, but I sense that this older gentleman here bears a blade which I would swear bears the mark of Davashuum, my stealthy West Wind that steals the sun. And this priestess, I sense some djinn influence upon her soul that makes me think of Pazhvann, my lucky East Wind. Maybe it is my own will to make it so, but I sense that indeed, you are the Heroes that have been chosen to to defeat Jhavhul once and for all."
"Even so, for all your power and bravery, I cannot think that you can face an army of Efreet alone. What aid can I offer? When I ruled this land, I had a great cavalry of Jann that patrolled the skies upon flying mounts. Many were lost in the Battle of Pale Mountain, but I am certain that the survivors remain hidden in the Brazen Peaks nearby. I will seek them for a second and final assault on Pale Mountain. Perhaps some Djinn remain in these empty seeming desert as well."
"I will gather what help I can and I advise you to do the same. Free those that are captive in Kelmarane and if you know any others that would save this world from Jhavhul's madness gather them quickly!"
She pauses and gives a brief peaceful sigh before continuing, "I grew old and died as all mortals must. I was judged upon the Spire by the Lady of Graves and sent to my eternal reward. The Bright Angel honored my sacrifice and made me Peri, one of the few immortal djinn that forsake their heritage to pledge themselves to Her. I thought I would never leave the Afterworld. All my grief was gone, I had no reason to think upon it again."
"Then word came that Jhavhul had escaped Kakishon and sought to finish what he had started so long ago. I admit that I could not help but think of Andrathi once again and even after all these years, a glimmer of hope. But I would never leave my Goddess' side unless she ordered it."
"We heard from an Archon that heroes had purged the stench of Urgathoa from a sacred oasis in Katapesh not long after. It was then that Sarenrae called upon me to find these heroes and support them in driving Jhavhul and the foul Efreet from this mortal realm before they could do the unthinkable."
The celestial smiles faintly at the little genie. "Rise, Little One. I no longer bear that title. I am only a servant of the Dawnflower."
Spooky finishes his circling of Nefeshti and returns to Kzrira giving his ragged ears a shake before fading away again. Rombard lays off Karethas' robe and turns to butt at Hadar and Hadra who just stand and gawk at the radiant being.
Nefeshti's glowing eyes dim slightly, "When Andrathi was taken into the very trap that he lay for the Efreet, I knew he was lost for all time. I grieved for decades, maybe a centuries. I do not know. I lost track of all: my knights, my people, time itself. No one could stir me."
"It was the simple monks here that finally touched me. The ones that established this Chapel to Sarenrae in the name of my lost general, Vardishal. What a strange thing to do. The djinn have no Gods. We live beyond the mortal realm. Why would we prostrate ourselves to our cousins?"
"But many of the monks had suffered and lost as well. Driven from their homes in Osirian across the deserts into the gnoll infested wilds of Katapesh. I found companionship in these simple men and women and their honoring of my lost companions. I realized that death is necessary for life and I used a wish to cast away my immortality to become mortal and worship with these simple monks."
"Andrathi was my world. I am Nefeshti." The darkened hall of the monastery is lit with brilliant light as a radiant being appears before you. She has skin as pale as a dove's breast and wings of fire, her eyes are blue as the hottest flame and her hair shines like burnished copper. She wears a gown of sky blue and yellow that flutters in a breeze that you cannot feel.
Suddenly, the Tempest staff jerks from Karethas' grasp as Gen appears and prostrates herself before the holy creature. "My Queen!" she gasps.
Rombard loses interest in the ghost cat and moves over to inspect Karethas deciding that his robe might taste good and grabs a mouthful of sleeve. Spooky floats down near the ground and pads on paws that hover a few inches above the floor to the darkened doorway. Somewhere beyond a feminine voice is heard- "Hello?"
Karethas ibn Faradin wrote:
"Beautiful woman? Has there been a woman with gnolls down in town?"
"No. We had never seen her before," Hadra replies.
Hadar adds, "She was beautiful. Pale as a dove with long red hair and great blue eyes."
"She only asked if you had returned yet and then disappeared," Hadra answers Amir.
The simple shepherds nod wide-eyed and begin their alternating narrative. Rombard, now quite large, tramps forward to give Amir a greeting butt nearly knocking the old rogue over.
"First, the fiery devils flew out of the sky-" begins Hadar.
Hadra finishes, "burning to ash all who resisted!"
"They turned the Battle Market to bronze-"
"and held hostages there to make sure no one else caused problems!"
"Then most of the devils went to the Pale Mountain-"
"and left Kelmarane to the gnolls."
"Brave Faelar tried to help, but he was captured by the devils and taken away."
"The gnolls took all our goats-"
"but we had to save Rombard-"
"so we hid here!" Hadar finishes.
Karethas ibn Faradin wrote:
"Hello? It is Karethas. Is Faelar or Qilue here?"
Karethas' query is met by another more welcoming bleat and the voices. Karethas?""The mighty wizard?"
The two shepherds, Hadar and Hadra, and their beloved goat, Rombard stumble out of the dark monastery.
"Oh, Masters! We are-"
"It has been terrible, Masters."
Though it has been a hard day of work, the morning will only bring the unbearable heat of summer once the group leaves the cooling greenery of the oasis behind so they say their farewells to the grateful Guardian of the oasis and leave with the setting of the sun.
The cycle of caravan life settles back over the party- long nights of travel and stifling days of rest under the harsh sun, but the powerful group encounters no difficulties for the remainder of the journey over the long abandoned route. The party finds that the new route has saved a third of the travel time from Katapesh City when the tall black obelisk marking the old route to Ipeq appears in the dawn's light. By the next day, you've taken the fork up the slackening flow of the Pale River and found the wadi with the burned out wagon that still remains from the time, which seems so long ago now, when you first met Garavel and Princess Almah after rescuing those slaves from Slow Idi. Idi finally met his fate in a most awful manner, but you wonder whatever became of those elven twins and more of the moment, what has become of Kelmarane under the efreet warlord Jhavhul.
the ignorant thief is correct.
Ashraf-Asim turns to the shining obelisk. "I believe Sarenrae will soon make it known to the faithful that this holy site has been restored, but notify the Vaultkeepers. They will be glad to know this trade route is open once more and so will the little town of Kelmerane which I believe you mentioned once."
The previous night, Kzrira once again feels as she did after her resurrection that her soul is worn and less than it once was. It is beyond the leonine lord's ability to repair and she falls asleep troubled. Her dreams beneath the obelisk are bright however and through its influence, she awakes restored the next morning.
just made it.
gonna need a fort save from Kzrira for the neg level, but +4 circumstance bonus.
The day breaks pink and gold in the east. The tall obelisk resembles a upright flaming sword in the dawn's light and is reflected in the oasis which has miraculously purified itself to become clear and refreshing with the coming of the day. Kzrira, ever on the look out for profit with her good deeds, sees something else glimmering in the now transparent pool. Old gold coins are scattered about the oasis' bottom: 3600 gp in all. Everyone sets forth to remove the dark stain upon the place and after a day of hard work, the ruined chapel though still broken, no longer bears the marks of desecration.
The guardian of the oasis sits as the sun sinks and takes in the view. "Noble Heroes, what you have done is beyond what I ever hoped, but I am sure others have need of your strength. I will stay and rebuild the chapel, but know that I am eternally in your debt."
It takes most of the rest of the day to gather wood and build the pyre. The deadly swarms have gone and only a scattering of mosquitoes bother those that enter the jungle for dead wood. After the pyre has burned down to hot ash, Assad can focus once more on the party. "You are tired and drained. This place is safe now. We can rest here. If you wish, I have the power to restore your lost vitality."
He can cast lesser restoration 7/day. so consider CON damage restored, if you wish.
The lammasu's deep brown face turns ashen with grief. With a single claw extended from his massive paw, he tenderly draws aside the shroud. "Her head," he says though it isn't clear if this is a question or statement. "All the remains should be cremated. Let her burn as brightly as the sun one last time. Then let us pray that her soul somehow reaches the Dawnflower."
It is not long after you have set to work that a rush of air is heard overhead and a great winged form glides down to where you stand. Assad Ashraf-Asim, lammasu warden of the desecrated oasis has arrived. The great bearded face of the winged lion looks incredulous. "You-You have done it. I had lost faith that this place could be restored, but I feel it. The curse has been lifted. The darkness purged. Did you find her? Fadiyah al'Qirym, the lost paladin?"
Varkata can see beyond the cracked wall to a small dim crypt lit by a sliver of light cutting through the crack.
I'll just wrap up this part.
Karethas uses his wand to form a passage into the chamber. The Archon easily overpowers the feeble vampire dragging it through the hole, from the pit, and out into the now bright sunlight that shines on the oasis. Four times is this repeated until all the unholy imams are destroyed forever.
Afterwards, the Archon bows his head to the conjurer. "It was an honor to be called for this task. Should you ever face such evil again, do not hesitate to call me again." Then he vanishes back to his higher realm.
Following the Archon, Kzrira finds that her light now shows the dark waters and slimy stone sides of the pit even after the enraged celestial teleports back out of the pit.
perception DC 25 in the pit:
You note that there are four evenly spaced gaps in the walls of the pit. They are mere cracks, but too straight and of uniform length to be natural. They are too narrow even for a finger, yet greasy black mist might slip through.
Surely, this is the most powerful being that Karethas has conjured so far. The robustly built being is muscular and man-shaped except for its canine head, but would never be mistaken for a gnoll. There is an aura of nobility that emanates from it and a bit of threat from its poise and the great sword it wields.
Its eyes catch the horrible blasphemy on the shrine and it growls and the aura of nobility suddenly becomes threatening. But it bows its head in assent to Karethas' request. "Destroying vampires, is it? Gladly." In a moment, its great sword is encased in flame lighting the area around it though the fire has no heat. Then the archon disappears and the light comes from the watery pit below.
"WHAT IS THIS!" Up comes an outraged shout and the celestial dives beneath the water to reappear beside you again with a great metal seal that seems to rail against the light cast by the archon's sword. The shield-sized bronze disc bears images of pestilence and blood orgy upon its corroded surface. "Urgathoan FILTH!" the holy creature howls and gives barking yells of outrage as it assaults the object with its heavy blade!