Ventured into the swamp south of WMC with Zak, Dimble, Tingork, Ogis and Joule acting as leader. The trek was uneventful until we encountered a woman and her baby being beset by a pack of direwolves, whom scattered after we approached. Twelve beasts. Odd, the animals here tend to be irrationally aggressive. After delivering her to her homestead and being rewarded with some ruebark to mask our scents in the night, we made our way south east where the presence of a large pyramid-like structure known as a Ziggurat is known to be. On the way there we came across some manner of panther which could make illusions of itself which disintegrated upon being struck. We did short work of the pair, despite them seemingly numbering in the dozens, and came upon the bodies of four folk of different races: a tiefling, a dragonborn, an elf and a human. With scant belongings and seemingly having had endured being chained based on the wounds in their extremities, they didn’t stood a chance against the illusory panthers and ended up their meal. We burned their bodies and continued forth.

Upon arriving nearby the ziggurat, we found a cave nearby, decided to check it out, clear it, make it a lair. We found a crystalline altar first, among the mushrooms, then were beset by a large conglomeration of dead people into a single body while checking out the remains of a camp nearby. Doing away with the foul creature quickly, we found some coinage, some actually healing mushrooms and a couple of journals. One in common, and one in Elvish. Nobody could speak or read the Elvish one, but the other mentioned some kind of expedition here to scout the premises. Sadly it didn’t mentioned to whom this expedition belonged, but it also discussed Orc sightings and the deceased scout speculated it to belong to the Orcs of The Way.

It also made note of one of their companions, the Elvish one, becoming obsessed with the crystalline altar. We would later find her and the wretched things that she made out of her people: A mimic/ooze-like thing that barfed petrifying acid breaths, which almost got me a new sheen of ruby scales and a zombie. Continuing to explore the cave we came across a hidden set of stairwells leading up to a well lit structure, which contained bonfires with escaping smoke out a window. I don’t know how we didn’t noticed the smoke in the distance.

Anyway, we explored little since it was already nightfall when we ventured into the cave, and we found some kind fused organisms together guarding the premises which quickly fell to our combined might. These were capable of at least dimension door. We tried to secure a place to sleep within but were literally smoked out of our barricaded position by a group of tortles flanking the room in which we were by a way of arrows. Joule decided to retreat and we did so, sought shelter through the night and could see a couple of campfires in the vicinity, which we did not approached as we sought a hidden spot, and finally we managed to rest and decided to head on back to “civilization”.

– Valorean.