The Rising of the Old
|MIN LEVEL||START LOCATION||START REQUIREMENTS|
|960||Karthak (Temple Quarter) (13, 7)||SK VIII Medallion (Complete A Favor for a Friend)|
You return to the Temple Quarter, it's a relief to come to a place where the Thieves Guild have little hold. In the east side standing in a small plaza a Monk dressed in long white robes waves you over.
'May the Light shine on your path.' He pauses for a moment and smiles at you pleasantly, 'You look like a formidable individual. May I be so bold as to ask if you are with SK Acquisitions, I am waiting for an experienced Hunter from that Guild.'
He takes the Medallion and looks at the notches, 'We know. You have been busy haven't you. This is a good sign. I shall wait until you're ready, then we can discuss the Commission further.' He hands the medallion back to you.
'Are you ready Hunter?'
He nods slowly, 'We are of the Light. We guide the people of Karthak when they need it and protect them even when they do not realize they require it. The second half of that is the most challenging aspect of our work. But we must guide the people the best way we can.' He looks around the plaza, 'All this is far more fragile than you would ever dream. It is a magnificent city but is needs to be tended or it will become overgrown and choked with weeds like any garden.'
He sighs deeply, 'Removing the weeds can, unfortunately, require some unpleasantness. This is why I contacted your organization. We have some... problems with an evangelist of one of the Old Gods. I realize how this might look, but you must believe me that in our time here, we of the Light have had to keep some... secrets. We cannot have those treasures made wildly known. It will not go well for the City if they ever come out. Some wisdom should never be shared.' His eyes lock onto you, 'Do you understand my meaning?'
You have heard something very similar recently, you nod slowly.
Brother Matthews glares at you sternly, 'You must believe that this is not simply about silencing another religion. There are other matters which are in play here. I'm sorry I cannot divulge those to you. It's... complicated.' He looks around then folds his arms as if to protect himself from something.
His eyes do not meet yours, with a halting reluctant voice he says, 'The Gods of the Sea seem to be rising again. This would not bother us normally but they are walking a dangerous road. One we cannot allow. We have heard a disturbing rumor that these Disciples are carrying a certain object. A very dangerous object. We need to find out if it's true. Due to this - the decision has been taken to kill 200 Disciples of the Sea. Return to me when you are done the task and acquired the item. This is a description of the item we hope they are not carrying. May Sahria smile upon you Hunter.'
Brother Matthews is giving some directions to a man dressed in travel stained cloths. His smile vanishes when he sees you. He gives a quick blessing to the man and hurries to meet you.
'A pilgrim looking for the Statue of Lindarsil, it's surprisingly popular for pilgrims to come here to pray at the Statue. There are very few shrines to the four gods of Light in the Realms oddly enough. But that's beside the point, have you done as I ask, do you have the accursed Orb?'
Brother Matthews winces as you hand him the Orb, 'I was hoping it was all a vicious rumor. This is terrible. Well, at least you have taken it from them. This is a good thing. It's a shame this had to be done. But there are some things that cannot be messed with.' He covers the orb in his heavy woolen cloak.
'Can you tell me if all the Disciples had the Orb?' You simply nod. The Monk stares at you, 'All of them?' Confused, you nod again. 'But they can't have, a Darkwater Orb is a powerful artifact. They are not easy to make!' You shrug and simply say that you can do anything with the right kind of help.
You have little idea on how to find out who is making the Darkwater Orbs. You doubt it's the Disciples you have met, given what Brother Matthews said about the Orb. You are about to give up when a crazed man dressed in tattered robes stands in the street and screams incoherently at you.
The odd little man rants on about lack of insight but in between the lunatic ravings you hear a single coherent sentence, '....You...you are the one crushing the true faith!' You stare at him, this madman must be part of the Sea Cult! You need to make sure so ask him what faith is being crushed.
He gives a shrill disconcerting laugh, 'You know, I am talking about the Cradle of the Sea. You have been killing the devoted for the imperialist Light!' This might be a madman but he knows where in Karthak the Disciples of the Sea are hiding. They must be somewhere.
You can't have a reasoned conversation with someone like this, so you go on the attack. You smile and say, 'The Light protects the people of this City, not some watery bint!' You watch the anger rise deep within the fool. He points a a bony finger at you, 'Unbeliever! You would be destroyed by the majesty of the Sea!' An idea forms in your mind. Surely it could not be that simple...
You lean in closer and say, 'Oh yeah, bet I wouldn't.' His face turns a strange colour of puce, 'Come with me and I'll prove to you the power of the untamed Sea. If you dare...' You're not sure how you manage to keep the grin off your face, but fold your arms and tell him to lead on. If he know the way.
The crazed fool's eyes bulge with fury. He then spins on his heel and grips a large iron grate sunk into the pavement. He points down into the darkness, 'Enter the darkness to find the truth!'
The sewers are a dark dank place, you hear the laughter of the Street Preacher echoing through the damp tunnels.
You find the crazed Street Preacher standing next to a magical rune carved into a stone platform. You feel power radiating from the magical device. You then hear the soft chuckle of running water. You look around for the source of the sound. 'Looking for the voice of the Sea? Take a closer glance at the Sea Rune.' He steps back and you then see water running through the rune, the sound is quite beautiful.
'The blood of the Sea runs through the Rune. It is a blessing from the Old God, heeding the needs of the faithful. Here Salshara crafts the Orbs that sustain us through the periods of trial that the righteous must always face.'
A icy voice silences the lunatic, 'Who is this Jolkin?' The man freezes, he points at you and begins to babble. Salshara rises a hand. 'You bring a stranger into our sanctum and start to spill our most precious secrets?' You recognize the brittleness to her voice that precedes death. Jolkin attempts to speak, but a shape starts to rise from the rune at his feet. You watch in horror as the water quickly forms into a rough shape of a man. Its arms grab the fool and pulls him back down into the rune where he vanishes from sight. You stare at the softly trickling water with a new dread.
Salshara sighs, 'I was warned that he could not be trusted. It's so sad I was proved wrong, he was so passionate about the old wisdoms he discovered.' Her gaze lifts from the rune to you. 'Now then, I see that I must also deal with you. Such as shame, you seem a competent individual. But there is no avoiding it. I take it that you have been blinded by the propaganda of the Light. Now that I have found the Avatar I shall not be separated from Him. I shall also find a way to free him from the bondage of the Light!' She raises her hand and you see a spell begin to manifest. Instinct throws you to the side. You hear the Ice Bolt smash into the wall behind you.
Salshara sighs again, 'Such good reflexes as well, truly a talented Warrior. But there is no avoiding it. Such a shame.'
You return to the Drakwater Rune, you will need to deal with Salshara of the Sea (Elite) and find a way to destroy the Rune.'
The unnatural water gurgles beneath your feet. You grit your teeth as you raise the Sidon Spear above your head. Down a side tunnel you hear the splashing feet of other Disciples of the Sea rushing to see what has happened to Shalsara. You need to be quick.
You slam the spear into the center of the Darkwater Rune. The rune must have be carved with the power of the Trident as your Sidon Spear shatters it completely. You watch the blue seawater begin to harmlessly dissipate into the murky rain water of the sewers. You hear a tortured cry echo through the tunnels.
Brother Matthews is chatting merrily to a ragged man in travel stained cloths. He sees you and the smile vanishes from his face. He quickly blesses the man and greets you. 'Have you managed to stop the Darkwater Orbs from being made?'
You tell him about your meeting with Jolkin and him leading you into the the Temple Sewers. He listens quietly and when you mention the Priestess Shalsara he flinches visibly. 'Yes, we have had dealings with her. She is a formidable woman. The Old God is with her powerfully.' You remember the battle and the ease that she could throw magic around. The Monk looks to the sky and gazes at the blue above, 'I have no idea why anyone would choose to follow such darkness when the Light is all around. But we will need to deal with her eventually and that will not be easy.'
You smile at him and say that she was responsible for creating the Darkwater Orbs using a magical Rune carved into the floor. You had to destroy the Rune and Shalsara to stop the Orbs from being made.
Brother Matthews blinks at you, 'You have killed the Priestess of the Sea? Thats incredible.' His smile fades slightly and he gives you a sharp look. 'Did she mention anything else?' You remember the comment about an Avatar being imprisoned by the Light, but sense it would not be wise to reveal your knowledge of it.
You shake your head and say she just ranted about the imperialist Light and its propaganda. The Monk relaxes. 'It is a shame she had to be killed. But those Orbs had to be stopped. They were a way for the Sea God to influence the Disciples directly. Twisting them to his will. I am more than pleased with your work Hunter.'
The Pilgrims Rest is a tidy little tea house, which is completely deserted apart from a lonely Klines sitting at a neat table.
He smiles at seeing you, 'I have just spoken to a runner from the Light. They are thrilled with your performance and efficiency. You have done us proud Hunter. You deserve a reward for your diligence, go to our Hall of Vaults and pick up your reward from Vault 3. But give me your Medallion so I can notch it, I can't forget that now can I!'
He notches the Medallion and hands it back to you, 'I can tell you that with your success we are getting more Patrons by the day. Our business is off to a great start. Better than I imagined to be honest. Return to me here when you have got your reward. I need to sort out which contract you need to do next.'
You enter the small well lit vault, an elegant statute smiles at you and hands you a gift.
The Statue silently closes his eyes and appears to sleep.
Klines is staring at three sheets of paper before him when you return.
He looks up at you, 'Ah, excellent. I'm not too sure which of these I should send you out on.' He then makes a snap decision and picks up a sheet.
'Since we are here already, you might as well do this one. Go see Cardinal Byford, you will find him in the Cathedral Gate. Remember - be polite, the Light is a powerful player in Karthak.'