Nightmares

We fought off our assailants and headed back to the tavern only to be plagued by nightmares. We awoke to find ourselves in the care of Zecht Tribal, who told us that we were pretty restless sleepers.

We went searching for answers to the riddle of Varsuviux, and our search led us to the Black Market, the head of which was a Man by the name of Reginald. When he realized our predicament, he invited us inside.

We sat down to dinner, and shared our knowledge of this evil presence. Reginald kept his composure until I showed him the playing card with the address of the exact street corner where he had set up shop. His eyes widened.
“You fools, you led him right to me!”

Reginald was too right about this. In a split second, Varsuviux had appeared, along with two vile demons who carried spiked chains. He scolded us for plotting against him, and told us that this would not go unpunished. He then snapped his fingers, and a dark hand grabbed Winfrey and snatched her up through a portal. I jumped up to the table, drawing blade and wand in one swift motion, and fired upon the dark lord. He attempted to block my attack, but my rage fueled magic was too much for him. I knocked away his protective charm and started flinging all I had at him. Meanwhile, Gilder, Zecht, and Reginald all moved in to attack. Reginald was the first one down, after he was struck with a powerful bolt of lightning. Zecht was run through with a metal gauntlet, and crumpled to the ground where he stood. Gilder was blasted off the table with at least six magic missiles, and was sent hurtling towards the back wall, where he lay unconscious.

Varsuviux commanded his two demons to attack, bade us farewell, and disappeared. Clare, Alistair, and I struck the demons down, not without difficulty, and called in medical help for our friends. I must admit that I was still grieving at the loss of Winfrey. As soon as our companions were stable, I left to go blow off some steam. It was raining. How fitting.

We were eventually called back, and Reginald was kind enough to let us know that our best hope of beating Varsuviux was to get information from Clayborn Gambit, who was staying in a nearby tavern. Rumor had it that Gambit was the only one alive who had bested Varsuviux, so we set off in search of him.

Clayborn Gambit isn’t just famous for this, however, he is also one of the greatest bards of all time! His music is what inspired me to my trade. I looked forward to meeting him.

Still, it pays to be cautious. I wove disguises for myself, Clare, and Alistair. Clare and I were a couple of blond human boys, and Alistair was a crotchety old man. When we arrived in the tavern, Gambit was on stage, performing live music. I couldn’t help myself, this could well be the only chance I’d get! I hopped on the organ, and fulfilled my lifelong goal of performing on stage with Clayborn Gambit.

After just a couple songs, I asked him if my companions and I could talk to him in private. He reluctantly agreed, and told us to meet him in his room.

When we entered, he told us that we could remove our disguises. I was impressed, but not altogether surprised that he saw through me so easily, but nevertheless, I obliged. (And got him to sign my songblade! Score!) We then had a long chat about Varsuviux. Gambit had escaped from the underdark under the dark lord’s nose, and returned to the surface. Sadly, Varsuviux had done the same. Gambit told us that Varsuviux probably wanted his Phylactery, which was held in a highly secure Arcane tower. It held to reason that the dark lord wouldn’t be able to obtain it on his own. The rings of power that he had given us were also used as tracking devices. He was probably monitoring us right now.

Gambit decided that he had better leave. If the Dark Lord knew where he was, that would mean nothing but trouble for him. He told us that it would be alright if we used his room for the night. It was time for me to plan a heist.

Not even five minutes had passed, however, when we heard a magical shockwave emanating from a nearby graveyard. We rushed to see what was the matter, and were met with the sight of a large minotaur with Gambit slung over his shoulder. We drew our weapons, and told him to talk fast.

His common wasn’t great, but he introduced himself as Osiris and told us that he was a servant of Varsuviux as well, just following orders. Reluctantly, we let him go. We couldn’t do anything without invoking the wrath of the Dark Lord. Gambit was to be held as collateral along with Winfrey to ensure that we got his phylactery back.

Mark my words, I will have revenge. It’s just a matter of time, Varsuviux. You’ll get yours.

—Wilward Jones

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