Shadows in the Abyss

The Giant King Falls

Battle in the flooded ruins of Gozreh's temple.

As the ship approached the giant camp we immediately became aware that something was off. The town was too silent, there was no movement. I ordered Tyrnn to land the ship, and smoothly. He’s been too incompetent of late, I didn’t spend all of that time tutoring him in proper shipcraft for him to go and break the ship. Thankfully we descended from the skies and landed without too much incident. I grabbed Treacle off her perch – I felt would need her insight – and rounded up the crew. I made it clear that we were in potentially hostile territory and we had to keep our wits about us. Tyrnn, Olo, and I descended from the ship and unfurled the magic carpet. We climbed aboard and made our way to the town. It was deserted, desolate. The temple looming above it cast a sinister shadow over the surroundings. All of the residents had presumably fled… but why? Had they heard of my coming? This wouldn’t be the first time that people have run in fear from the name Aramis Barbcock. The very sound gives even me chills. While Tyrnn and Olo clowned about I remained alert scanning the surroundings for danger. Ever since Jerome… No, I must focus.
We rode around the town to check for signs of activity before making our way to the temple. The courtyard was untended and unkempt. I had to resist the urge to build an effigy of myself there as tribute to our passing, it wasn’t the time. Perhaps later though… The temple was doorless and inside was dark and gloomy. I gave us some rudimentary light while Tyrnn brought out his torch, before continuing on our way. Very soon the corridor opened up into a chamber with a throne standing in the middle of the room. As we came closer we realised that it wasn’t empty. A massive figure was sitting on the throne. He was clothed in once fine rags and had bands of faded gold about his arms and neck. This could only be Altan.
I walked up to him, “I see you still had the courage to remain and face me! Commendable seeing as all of your lackeys have run off and left you.” Altan shivered and cowered in fear before me gibbering to himself like a maniac. Truly, word of my deeds had spread. I began to taunt him, goading him to face me in one-on-one open combat. No one had dared since Chadwick Blaze, and we all know how that turned out. With him broken and penniless, devoid of Elizabeth, and getting his breeches handed to him by yours truly. Altan simply kept cowering in the depths of his throne looking anywhere but directly at me. When Altan wouldn’t rise to the bait we decided to provoke him physically. However, as soon as we touched him he began spewing out a foul goop. Not knowing the nature of this substance we quickly jumped onto the carpet. Running through possible scenarios I reasoned that it probably would not be safe to physically touch this liquid making close combat out of the question. Olo and I fired a few shots at him before trying our luck with some dust of dryness that we had stashed away for a rainy day. This worked for a while until surprisingly; the dust began to get saturated. The liquid burst forth and eventually it began to fill the room, the corridor, and the land beyond. We decided to retreat to the ship and decide our next course of action. Upon getting to the door of the temple, however, we saw that the horizon and the surrounding area had now become partially submerged in water. We urged the carpet on over the deepening pools of water when, from below, the attack came. We were scattered, the most agile of us already back on his feet, goldsheen rapier in hand, scanning the water for danger. I began to feel a creeping sensation up the back of my breeches… it couldn’t be…ABOLETHS. I thought I had taught them to fear me all those years ago when we first did the dance of blades. I could beat this Aboleth single headedly, but first… I needed to look for my crew. We are strongest with my oversight. Olo was still on his backside, Tyrnn blindly searching for something in the water. “TO MEEEE,” I cried, trying to rally my crew. Then the tentacles came. Olo didn’t stand a chance. They began to wrap themselves around him, probing him in the most intimate places. Appalled, I surged forward. “BACK, YOU!” I screamed hacking away at them with my rapier. A few tried to sneak up behind me, so I released a cacophony of sound at them forcing them back. I used a burst of strength to free Olo from the remaining tentacles before dragging him towards Tyrnn. At this point it was difficult to tell where the man stopped and the tentacles began. I could only see his eyes, pleading with me to end his suffering, his sexual torment. “Not this day, Tyrnn!” I rushed forward frantically beating at the tentacles to release him. My fists had little effect, and I stumbled forward tripping over something in the water. I glanced down… Tranquillity! I submerged myself grabbing the sword before releasing a barrage of attacks onto my beleaguered crewmate. Finally, he managed to free himself, and handing him Olo we managed to retreat to the relative safety of the ship. I ordered Andrew to give us some height so that we may better understand the situation that we were under. A murky shape weaved its way through the buildings below in water that bizarrely was now above human height. I was about to order a blast of cannon fire to finish the fell creature off when the ship began to descend. The angle was too sharp though, and the decent to rapid. Tyrnn. Again. I looked over to the ship’s wheel only to find Andrew there grinning at me fanatically.
“What’s wrong with you, man?” I cried, fighting to make my way to him. He only rolled his eyes into his head and waggled his tongue at me. All around me crew members were rushing to right the ship, trying to wrestle control of the wheel away from Andrew. They finally managed it, only to have Andrew start attacking them indiscriminately. This unnatural behaviour, so out of character for Andrew had to be the work of the Aboleth. Some sort of mind control, I suspected.
Then all hell broke loose. Tyrnn began attacking Andrew, Olo began attacking Tyrnn, all the while the ship was still descending. Was I the only sane one?!
We reached a level where the the Aboleth was able to attack the ship directly, rending it with its tentacles. The battle between the crew however had moved below the deck. I rushed down the depths of the ship to find them in a standoff in the engine room. That jumped up jellyfish, He-who-Stickers doing absolutely nothing to defuse the situation [WELL ACTUALLY ARAMIS, OLO AND I WERE TAL-] Shut up. And stay out of my head. I began to try to talk Tyrnn down and stop Olo from peppering the inside of the ship with bullets. Then Tyrnn moved. Andrew exploded next to me, and Olo started shooting. I fell to my knees trying to gather up Andrew’s remains. Olo used his ring of invisibility to disappear and leave the engine room with Tyrnn hot on his heels. I could hear the cannons firing away at the Aboleth outside, but did it really matter anymore? Andrew was dead. [BUT I AM ALIVE!] YOU FOOL!
I gathered up the remains and stored them somewhere safe. Andrew would rise again. I guarantee it. Back on the upper deck, Tyrnn seemed to have regained his senses. About damn time. Did he even care that he just obliterated Andrew?!
We were outgunned. We needed help. We needed Mara. The reason I let her leave the crew was for moments like this. Moments where we would need her healing abilities, only grown stronger and more potent over time. Finding an opportune moment I conjured a permanent image of Tyrnn allowing him to use the portal in the oven to go to Mystcroft and commandeer her.



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