After meeting with our new friends we headed back to the Lost Refuge to enter the portal. With us came the ranged warrior Nick Hook, Dorn the Halbardier, and Maeve the sorceress. Jon received a message from Candlekeep, something about needing his presence. We gathered some items for our trip and headed out. Only took a quick couple days this time. With a heavy sigh we entered the portal, Quintus went first.
It was dark, light barely went passed 30 feet before it became a grey shadow and then black. We were warned that light and fire would be hampered in this plane. Once everyone got through there was a short discussion on clearing this place out to make it a base, a temporary one, just in case a need should arise. I thought it futile but agreed anyways. The layout of the Refuge was the exact same in the normal plane, save the statues in the normal one. It gave me the creeps. I walked to the door to the north of us with Hook and Dorn, I opened the door and gagged. The putrid smell of rotting flesh and decay was unexpected. The smell of those undead creatures we encountered two years ago smelled far better. The other two went in while I collected myself. Dorn stepped in and was immediately grappled by a man-tiger with four arms. I knew immediately I was going to hate the shadow plane. The damn thing was tough and what was worse was the macabre nature of the beast. Butcher like. There were meat hooks and dead bodies everywhere. Dorn was even placed on one. It took a while before he was put down by Maeve’s spell. Finally, someone else delivers the final blow for a change.
We continued upward to the stairs which revealed an observatory. Could see nothing but shadow and maybe a bit a head. There was a gatehouse and further down was a vessel docked. Before we left we took another trip back, since we hadn’t expected the high difficulty of enemies. Another few days, we were back in. Down the road revealed to be a river, I had a feeling once we went down there wouldn’t be an easy way back like Q had expected. As we closed in on the vessel and sneaked passed the gatehouse the vessel revealed to be full of skeletons and a shadow creature. I remember I took one of the Shar symbols and placed it on my chest, gave one to Q as well. I decided to bluff my way through, likely the only way to get in without drawing swords every other moment. After exchanging credentials, thanks to Q’s great memory, we played ourselves as underlings of some higher ups and delivering some dominated prisoners. Down the river we went.
The landing took us to a monastery. Departed from the boat and followed torch lit paths. Q got the idea of ringing the bell to signal our presence – it worked as the door opened ahead. Still leading the group, we went inside and found the altar. Standing guard was a mean looking golem. We tried bluffing again but it didn’t work, setting alarm to the golem which began to attack us. The attacks from the other three didn’t seem to hurt it at first, they were firing ranged weapons. I don’t know why either. But Q and I’s attacks seemed to have hurt it a bit. Maeve used a spell to create an image of a dragon to distract it, it had worked. Some of her spells seemed to have a great impact on it. It crumbled to dust.
Behind the altar, there was a little chest. I broke the lock to see the contents. It had a ceremonial dagger, chalice, and platter. They were for sacrifices. I’ll never understand the barbarism of some fanatics.