Wending their way through the dismal backdrop of Greypeak Mountains, the party trekked through light rain and a cloud-strewn sky, before eventually realizing that they were lost. Orienting themselves to some of the local trades-paths, they eventually fell prey to what appeared to be an ambush that never would happen; the duskblade fell through a trapped false-floor in front of a wooden chest. Later exploration revealed three would-be assailants who had perished some days beforehand.
Pressing onward, they eventually found the Moathouse amidst the rocky hills of the Greypeak Mountains. The wall had partially collapsed and one of the towers was burnt-out. The gnome took notice of some new planks securing the open bridge to the vaulted door. Suddenly, a frosted tongue lashed out from a nearby rocky, salt-marsh and swallowed the poor gnome in one bite, leaving little but certain doom. The rest of the party sprang into action, as a giant frost toad lurched partially out of the icy marsh. The duskblade and psychic warrior closed for melee, but their attempts were fraught with an ill fate: the duskblade nearly sliced the psychic warrior with his crackling blade and the latter dropped his jagged orkish blade into the salty marsh. Thankfully, the gnome focused his mind intently and manifested a dimension door to warp out of the belly of the beast – a move that easily saved his life.
The sickly toad croaked and the marsh water froze instantly around the burst of icy cold this fell bellow brought. The duskblade and psychic warrior fought onward, while the gnome pelted the massive beast with psychokinetic bursts of fire from afar. The cleric continued his defensive prayers and levelled a wand that belted fiery bursts at the beasts’ thick hide. Then, the beast lunged and the duskblade was swallowed, but later cut out by the psychic warrior, who landed a telling blow and tore the beast’s flesh wide open. Taking stock of their situation, the cleric tending to their wounds, they then pressed onward.
Immediately inside the shattered courtyard, they notice a large smear of dried blood along the floor, leading to a nearby step that rose into a further court, its doors frayed and splintered long ago. They strode through the rocky, dwarven court – the gnome reflexively reaching out with his mind to psychically sense any danger. They entered the far court and found a shattered tower, with a few doors, the light darted through the sagging and beaten roof of this large, chapel-like place. They could see a few bodies arranged in strange positions, with their weapons placed on top of them. Suddenly, the psion sensed danger and sprang to action, using a force shield to ward off harm.
A trio of dog-sized, scaled lupine creatures emerged from the shadows and rubble and sprang their attack, breathing a weird, mind-numbing mist upon the heroes. It slowed their reflexes as the world around them became a blur. The screeching beasts closed for battle with vicious claws and dripping, venomous bites. The gnome realized these were ambush drakes and tried to inform the party through their magical stupor. The mist prevented effective movement and they stumbled to parry the beasts’ claws, and stinging poisonous bites. Their hides resisted some minor magics but the psion was able to consistently blast them with searing pyrokinetic blasts. The cleric’s prayers ensured his allies wouldn’t be seriously harmed, as he cautiously backed away, his mind resisting the mists.
Just as the pitched battle seemed even, the gnome’s energy blasts tore two of the beasts apart in a fiery, screaming explosion. The final beast panicked and wild-eyed, took advantage of the confusion to retreat into the courtyard, leaping over the wall and escaping.
The group gathered themselves and then searched the dank room, discovering the remains of a bounty hunter they’d spoken to earlier, as well as what appeared to be an unknown thief and a man in clerical robes. They discovered some weaponry and gems, as well as several strange artifacts that seemed to be linked to The Elder Elemental Eye: the gnome and cleric confirmed the nature of these strange and chilling religious objects. The drakes’ perhaps had a last laugh, as their venom lingered through many terrible bites, but the gnome’s disciplined mind ignored the poison through sheer power of will. His friends weren’t so favoured, and suffered wracking pains, leaving the duskblade in anguish and nearly paralyzing the psychic warrior.
The group decided to withdraw to the nearby rocky hills, to rest and aid their envenomed friends.