EDITED BY DUNGEONMASTER STEVE Participants: John A - Star (Elf Fighting-man) Rachel B - Mauve (Hobbit Thief) Fred B - Ansley (Human Magic-User) Norm H - Derpmancer (Dead), Beefmaster (Dead) The party sailed from Tycha to the Last Outpost. Upon entering the town, they were met at the gate by Skrell (a scribe of Sparn). Skrell had many questions for the new arrivals, and they for him. Skrell let them know he would pay handsomely for any firsthand information obtained from the Wild Lands to the east. He also talked of a strange obelisk that had suddenly appeared just south of the town at the edge of the farmlands, and sightings of strange creatures at night. Animals no longer approach the obelisk, and the people that do turn mad. Inside the city, the party took a brief look around, then headed to the Tavern (The Legionaire). Inside the tavern the barkeep Maximar, who had served with the Hydra Legion (Hail Hydra!). When prompted for rumors, Maximar offered that a group of adventurers had recently disappeared into the thick Jungles of Brool to the north. He also asked if the party had heard any news about The Oracle. The party had no knowledge, so Maximar proceeded to inform the party that The Oracle could be found in the mountains to the East. Adventurers can bring unknown items to The Oracle to have them identified (for a price). The Oracle will also, occasionally tell portents of things to come. Also inside the tavern was a group of local farmers, which the party engaged to see if any other rumors could be obtained. The farmers only spoke of their concern about the obelisk, stating that it was making their animals wild and they were killing each other or themselves. The farmers offered a reward of 5,000gp if the group could put an end to their problem. There was one adventurer inside the bar, but he did not choose to join the party. The group stayed at the Inn (The Cannibal's Cookpot) overnight. The next day the group headed South along the coast, in the direction of the obelisk. By the second day it could be seen from quite a distance away. As the party approached, Star and Mauve began to hear the faint whisper of voices upon the wind, but the party pushed on. A little further in and the rest of the party discovered what Star and Mauve already knew, there was something foul afoot. Ansley and Derpmancer fell into a stupor when the insane voices began telling them eldritch secrets. Star figured out that the party needed to stuff cloth into their ears to block out the sound. He tore his undershirt (risking chaffing) and everyone was able to mute the sounds. Ansley and Derpmancer were brought back around with the help of the party. Pushing on they arrived at the obelisk. A massive structure standing over 800 ft tall, with a base approximately 250 ft wide. The large capstone at the top, had a gaping mouth on all sides. Moving around the obelisk, the party was able to find an entrance (to the South) and moved inside. Once inside the obelisk, the party realized they no longer needed the ear protection. Moving cautiously through the first hall, the party came to the first chamber, a large room with 4 sets of circular stairs all in the middle on some platform that was constantly turning. The party was able to briefly look around when they encountered a Fire Beetle. Battle ensued in which our brethren Depmancer lost his life. After the beetle was defeated, the party continued to explore the central chamber. In the NE corner, there was a slightly elevated platform. Star took the steps to the top and found a secret door, but no means to open it. Thinking that one of the metal circular pads on the floor might trigger the door, Ansley stepped on the closest one and it unfortunately did not open the door. Instead, the pad was a trigger that called 4 pale white elves into existence, who immediately set upon the group. The battle was hard-fought as the elves wielded spells just as well as they wielded their bright weapons. Mauve was rendered unconscious during battle, and it was only with the arrival of Beefmaster that the day was won.  Licking their wounds, the party opted to return to the Inn (which is a 2 day journey from the obelisk). However, the party failed to remember about the voices and were again assaulted mentally. One of their number flew into a berserker rage, and lashed out at his friends, but the group was fortunate and were able to take control of the situation. The party safely made it back to the town. Star was able to buy some nice scrap linen (and a new undershirt) for the party to use to protect their ears from the madness surrounding the obelisk. The party passed this information on to the farmers, but they saw no value in the information, saying instead, "What do ya expect us to do? Stuff the ears of every cow, horse, and chicken on the veldt?" While at the tavern, the party was able to recruit the services of 6 out of 8 mercenaries thanks to the silver tongue of Mauve. Heading out again, the party moved in the direction of the obelisk. Unfortunately they did not follow the same path as on the first trip and encountered the lair of giant scorpions; a large outcropping of rocks. 3 giant scorpions were able to sneak up on the group. The hungry, savage arachnids made quick work of Beefmaster and 4 of the 6 mercenaries. One of the mercenaries struck a lucky blow to one of the creatures, freeing Mauve at the last moment as everyone fled. The scorpions declined to follow, more interested in the fresh corpses that littered the nearby ground. Quickly racing back to the walls of the town, the party found themselves again in relative safety. A quick check of retainer morale showed that only 1 of the 2 still living were willing to stay with the party. Tune in next time to see what happens to our beloved heroes! Total xp = 862 Loot = 200sp