Serpent's Skull

The Trade District

A ghost of a chance

Golarion date 10 Abadius, 4711AR

While Drasheen was enchanting weapons and Mastuuk was deciphering journals and writing scrolls, the government and free captains expeditions arrived (together) in Savinth-Yhi. The government camp was dangerously near the depression where the angry ghost of Nareem Daress haunted, so Zelshee, Joque, Teyla and Mastuuk went to talk to them. What they found was a military camp filled with soldiers. They met Jask Derindi, an old friend from the Shiv and told him about the ghost, hinting that they might know some details that might put him to rest. Jask wanted them to tell their tale directly to the government expedition leader, Rotilius Havelar. General Havelar was a gruff military man, and didn’t take kindly to Mastuuk’s and Joque’s suggestion of selling their info when it was good peoples lives at risk. Zelshee was more diplomatic and was able to smooth things over and gain a small amount of trust from the General. Havelar asked them to work with Jask in dealing with the ghost and putting him to rest.

Eventually the plan was to write a Pathfinder Chronicle crediting Nareem with the sole discovery of Savinth-Yhi. Mastuuk wrote it, but he had no intention of it ever being submitted. Mastuuk got to work on that. Meanwhile Zelshee and Teyla visited the pirates camp, which was also in the ruins on the outskirts. The pirates were sprawled amongst the buildings, a motley crew lounging about. They talked to Aerys Mavato, another companion from the Shiv and eventually Kassata Lewynn, the pirate captain. Kassata toyed with Zelshee, making a show for her men, but they left without incident (other than Zelshee almost falling on her face when a pirate tried to trip her while leaving). As they left Aery caught up to them and asked a favor. Aerys was still working to complete her epic poem, the “Abendego Cantos,” but her trip to Saventh-Yhi proved to be a huge distraction. She began a new saga—the “Song of Saventh- Yhi” not long after arriving in the city, and asked them to find six different secrets of the city for her by studying the ancient wall carvings.

The next day they took the fake manuscript to the haunted depression. Joque went down to the cenotes and buildings while the others stood at the edge with the manuscript. Soon enough the phantom ants and angry ghost appeared and attacked Joque. Joque ran, but not fast enough. The others ran to his aid, but Joque fell at their feet as the ghost struck him down. Zelshee presented the manuscript, and the ghost reached out a phantom hand and sighed “Finally! Yes…..” as he disappeared to the great beyond.

Jask helped heal Joque, then asked a favor of them. Jask had long studied the history of Nethys,
and those legends all agree that he came into being in the earliest days of the ancient Osirion empire. Yet some texts he’s studied imply that Nethys may have replaced an even older Azlanti god of magic. Jask was curious to find out if there’s any evidence of such a now-forgotten god of magic hidden somewhere in the ruins.

Continuing their exploration of the city, they returned to the trade district south of their camp. They took a closer look at the bone covered island, and noticed the grasses and weeds had been smashed down by something large walking across them. Mastuuk transformed into an eagle and flew around the island at a distance and spotted a depression on the far side with an overhang. He thought he saw something large just in the water under the overhang, but did not dare get any closer. He returned to the group, and they decided to leave it be for now and explored the rest of the trade district. By the end of the day they had determined this district was wild and abandoned, there were lots of signs of creatures (bones, spoor, old nests) but was otherwise largely abandoned. There were 3 places of interest other than the bone island: The old vault where no vines grew, the underground cave at the collapsed portion of the ziggurat sinkhole, and the fortress on the island across the water.

Investigating the old vault, they found 3 stories of rooms above ground and downstairs a circular room surrounded by what appeared to have been secure vaults. The room was covered in blast marks, some of which were humanoid in shape. The rusted doors standing open or fallen on the floor. The room was silent. They crept in an were surprised by 3 shadowy forms that rose from the floor and attacked. Zelshee stood toe to toe with the largest one, two others flanked Drasheen by the stairs up. The shadows icy cold touch sapped the very strength from their bones, and Zelshee collapsed under the weight of her armor and gear as Drasheens prayers forced the undead back for a short time. Soon enough the undead horrors returned, this time Teyla collapsed from the weakness brought on by their touch, but the combined positive energies from Drasheen and Zelshee finally defeated the horrors.

Exploring the old vaults a little more, they quickly realized the whole place had been looted long ago. The blast marks appeared to have been traps that had once protected the valuables stored here, but there was nothing left for them. They returned to camp and recuperated from their adventure in the vault.

From the Log of Jocque Tarr

We are accumulating quite a set of debts:

We owe the Mantis their Mantis Blade.

We owe Gelik Aberwhinge info on past expeditions to Savinth-Yhi. Although we already handed over info on the Pathfinder expedition led by the ghost, Nareem Daress, we found in the depression by the three ponds.

We owe Ishirou a safe place to land if he needs it.

We owe Aerys Mavato six different secrets of the city for for her new epic saga, “The Song of Saventh-Yhi” by studying the ancient wall carvings.

We/I owe Jask Derindi a favor. He has long studied the history of Nethys,
and those legends all agree that he came into being in the earliest days of the ancient Osirion empire. Yet some texts he’s studied imply that Nethys may have replaced an even older Azlanti god of magic. Jask is curious to find out if there’s any evidence of such a now-forgotten god of magic hidden somewhere in the ruins.

And of course we owe Ieana/Yarzoth a beheading.

How did we get this far into debt? I just want to pay the last debt and get the hell out of here alive. If I wasn’t afraid of ghosts before I got here I sure as hell am now. It doesn’t appear that blessed armor slows them down any more that a piece of drift wood would slow down a sword and, again, I have felt the clutch of icy fingers closing around my heart.

Got to get in back and stay in back, Jocque, or you are going to die here.

Note from Zelshee Venso

I must admit, I’m enjoying the adventure Mastuuk has drug me on. Oh yes, it’s scary! But very exciting, too. We actually were able to give Nareem rest after hundreds of years. Never again will he haunt and kill. He is at rest. Probably, not at peace. But at least he is not able to do evil in this world ever again!
The government and the free captains, and the pirates have all arrived and joined the party. Interestingly, they all want something from us. Which makes me happy. They must all think we are the strongest group and have the ability to deliver. Of course we are, and we can.
Although, I didn’t feel very strong after are little escapade into the vault! I certainly hope Mastuuk is keeping a record of all the different undead we’ve run across! They are all so different and take something different to defeat. These last things were shadows. But, there was one VERY BIG shadow. It must have been bound to the vault, in fact, the very room that we discovered them in. Probably all the cursed souls of the people who died trying to rob the vault.
Again, justice! Never again will they harm another living soul.
What to do about the island? That thought nags at me. I don’t swim. There is a monster on that island that does. What to do?
The zigarot. Probably more ghosts. Which really should scare me. But, that island scare me more. Or should I say the swimming monster scare me more. It’s one thing to die in battle while dealing justice to an evil foe. It quite another to die while sinking to the bottom of lake. I guess I’ll be the bait that stays on the shore.

From the Journal of Drasheen Rettig

As I pray and meditate my main concern is enhansing armor and weaopons and praying for lessor restorations.
I am mindboggoled by the turns of events. Doing favors and giving favors to the other groups who may just as soon kill us as keep their word. But my soul and the souls of my friends is all I care about. I could feel myself being pulled into the dark side as Joque starting telling the Captain of the dangers concerning the shadow captain and how he killed his crew. I wanted them to find out for themselves and if they should die. oh well! And not how we thought we could work together on getting the evil shadow capt. back to the world he needs to be in. The evil in this place is rubbing off on me. The evil its everywhere when we came into circular room and the 3 icy shodow forms began taking all our strength and my friends started falling I didn’t know whether to fight, dimiss, heal or slash… That was a close one and I didn’t like seeing my friends so hurt. I will try to turn my mind off and sleep so I will be able to pray well in the morning.

From the journal of Mastuuk Venso

10 Abadius 4711AR
I’m not sure how to feel about the military camp. General Havelar is not to be trusted anymore than the cut throats and assassins; he will always choose the safety of his men over any trust or loyalty we obtain from him. At least he can be predicted. Jask, on the other hand, still owes a debt to our group and I think he is less frightened of his employer than out other shiv-mates. He may prove to be a useful aly so we should play nicely with the military and the general for now. Fortunately my sister is much better at being cordial than I am and smoothed over a few wrinkles.

Aerys, I’m not sure what to make of her. When we knew her she was a barely functional drunk. Now that she’s stabilized she seems more interested in her poetry than in the pirates she associates with and that could be a boon. However, we still know little about her so she could end up being the most dangerous of all.

We’ve also managed to free the soul of our departed half orc brother. While I don’t intend to give him full credit for my grand discovery his purserverence deserves some note or preface. His name will live on in Pathfinder history even if it’s not quite as he had hoped. His release was far easier than that of the shadows whose icy touch gave Zelshee some idea of how I live my life. Note to self, locate a handy haversack in case this happens again.

I feel we’ve nearly cleared this section of the city. There is a great beast in the water which we will have to deal with somehow but at least we can plan that encounter so that it goes in our favor. I’m not so sure about the building on that small island. And the ziggurat has some danger beneath it in that sinkhole, I’m sure of it. I think we should tackle the ziggurat first, I’m tired of islands right now.

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