Nature's New Order
Temple of the Ancients
Built in the middle of the desert, the Temple of the Ancients appears to have been built as tribute to the Ancients, 7 legendary heroes of great skill who were tasked with protecting the world from an ancient evil. The temple stands as a pyramid above ground, and the temple’s interior is supernaturally hot, hotter even than the desert outside.
Inside, the party found an animated, talking door that was quite flustered with the party’s presence. The floor was adorned with a plaque that read “The password is banana” in Dihgnaran. The party tried saying the word in Dihgnaran to the door, which did nothing. Eventually, Theydrin asked the door to read the plaque, and once the door said “banana”, it swung open.
The next room contained a set of tracks with a massive marble sphere, and a pressure plate on the other side of the room. The perimeter is lined with sarcophagi, and the tracks wind past them. The Expedition starts pushing the marble, which releases mummies from the sarcophagi. The Expedition dispatches them, before moving on to another room with a similar set of tracks and marble sphere. After pushing the sphere along, the party finds a room with a red octagonal crystal.
After a bit more exploration, they encounter a room full of mirrors with a pedestal. The pedestal has an indentation matching the red crystal from before. Bram walks by one of the mirrors, and the mirror spawned a shadow duplicate of Bram, with dark skin, red eyes, horns and fangs. After dispatching him, the Expedition inserted the gem into the pedestal creating a beam of red light that sprung forth and reflected off one of the mirrors. Eventually they found a way to use the mirrors to bounce the light across the room into a crystal sphere on the opposite end, opening the door to the next room. They started to cross past the mirrors one at a time, with Bel Amn going first. After dispatching her duplicate, they found a safe route across the room, and moved to deeper into the temple where they found Areo.
Areo filled the Expedition in on the happenings in Snow Melt. He mentions that Frogar Vall has converted virtually everyone in town to Iron Inquisitors. He also tells them that the Grand White Wizard betrayed the Expedition’s location to their enemies, before being converted to an Iron Inquisitor himself. He reveals that The Storm has been working against both Astor and Cecil
Areo allows the party to rest at his camp, in exchange for 1 hour of privacy for himself, and they decide to press on. In the next room, they find a plaque with what appears to be nonsense written on it, and an expansive chasm with doors to the south. They try sprinkling sand on over the chasm, and find an invisible path crossing the chasm. Using his sword and sand, Theydrin is able to map a safe passage partially across the room, but he eventually hits a dead end. Reexamining the plaques, Theydrin finds a code using first letters of words to specify cardinal directions for crossing the chasm. Later, he also identifies that the letter J is used to signify jumps across the invisible floor. After crossing the pit, they found a room with treasure, and another leading down a hallway with fire runes lining the walls.
Further down the hallway, they find a room with a ring of white runes written on the nearby floor. Theydrin identifies it as a Teleportation Circle using his Oracle talents, and knows it’s designed to teleport someone from one circle to a matching circle, using a tuner ring. Without the tuner ring, anyone using the circle could be teleported anywhere, and any time. Such a Teleportation Circle could only be cast by White Robes.
In the next room is, written in chalk, the word “Clarity”, with an arrow. Next to the word is a sleeping giant red dragon. The expedition goes back to Areo‘s camp to rest, before returning to face the dragon. Bram Boulderhammer tries to talk to the dragon and offer it healing, which he responds to by breathing fire on most of the Expedition. Theydrin Durjss’Axle and Bel Amn work together to save Von Nocen, who was mortally wounded by the dragon. Farin Oinson was enlarged by Nest, before felling it with a mighty blow from his axe.
Behind the dragon, the expedition finds a tuner ring for the Teleportation Circle, which Von Nocen donned. Von teleports through the circle with Smith but leaves him partway through the teleportation, throwing Smith to Torch. Von Nocen eventually returns to the original circle, and brings the rest of the expedition with him.
Through the Teleportation Circle, the Snowmelt Expedition found 3 sarcophagi with the Haradul family crest seven statues, one for each Ancient, including one statue bearing the likeness of The Hisser. In addition to The Hisser, there were 6 other statues, each representing a different Ancient and each ancient representing their own element:
The room is blazing hot, and there is a magically locked door in front of a stairway down and out of the room. After much exploration, the expedition can not find a way to open the magically sealed door. Nightmare Tomas appears and attempts to slay the expedition on behalf of his employer. He morphs into a winged demon, and battles the expedition. He uses fire and flies around to evade the party, and uses his fire to heal himself, and Von Nocen and Farin Oinson work together to defeat him, and Nightmare’s demons drag him away to hell.
The expedition finds the portal to the Plane of Fire, and Theydrin Durjss’Axle identifies that the Port Key for the Plane of Fire is a torch. They find the golden cat for Patches MaGoo in a treasure pile in this room before finally departing the temple.