Primordial Dawn

Into the Shadowfell

The session, as usual, starts with party member disappearing and appearing (depending on who bothered to show up that day). After they defeat the dimensional baddy du-jour (this time, a Dimensional Marauder accompanied by some sentient plant-life), the party continues their journey east, following the first piece of the Rod of Seven Parts.

As the party travels east, every once in a while the entire world seems to become dimmer for a split second. These occurrences become more frequent over time. After a while, the party comes across 5 oddly well preserved humanoid bodies. Three of them are boneless, and two of them appear to be skinned. Upon close examination, none of the bodies show any physical evidence of how their skin or bones have been removed. Within a few seconds, the world dims, this time permanently, and the party finds itself in the Shadowfell, surrounded by three skeletons and two empty shells.

After defeating the undead, Loin feels the rod directing him west, and the party starts traveling in the opposite direction. After a few random undead encounters, the party find itself facing off a Zombie Abomination. During the battle, the party spots a group of humanoids in the distance, coming to intercept the party. After the battle, some of the party stays to greet the incoming humanoids, while a few of the party members hide nearby.

When the incoming group of humanoid finally arrives the party can see they have ashen skin, raven-black eyes, tattoos, piercings, and what seem to be self-inflicted scars. The group claim to be soldiers in the service of the Raven Queen (Unaligned Goddess of Death, Fate and Doom), and ask the party to state their business. Loin, realizing the incoming group is probably not evil, emerges from hiding, holding up the rod. Upon seeing the rod, the group of warriors stand down and escort the party to their base.

The warriors, it turns out, lived on the mortal plane when the Blood Reaver’s prison was originally disturbed. Rather than relocate to Sigil, they pleaded with the Raven Queen for help. The Raven Queen agreed to aid them in exchange for servitude. The warriors then relocated to the Shadowfell and became the Raven Queen’s army. They are now known as Shadar Kai.

The Shadar Kai did come into contact with another part of the Rod of Seven Parts, but none of them was able to hold the Rod for more than a few seconds. Further research led them to understand it was meant for someone untainted by death. They then decided to safeguard the rod in one of their fortresses.

Unfortunately, the armies of the Demon Lord Orcus have grown stronger since the second shock-wave, and used that new-found strength to overtake large parts of the Raven Queen’s territory in the Shadowfell, including the fortress containing the Rod. If the Rod is to be rebuilt, the party would need to venture into Orcus’ territory and retrieve the next piece of the Rod.

The Story So Far

The campaign starts with the party waking up in cages with no memory of how they got there. The cages are being carried by bullywugs, who seem as afraid of the party as they are hostile to them. As they are being led back to the bullywug’s village, one bullywug, named Splug, pleads with the rest of the village to set the party free. He believes that the very existence of the bullywugs is a mistake, and that the party is the only one who can make things right.

Later, at the village, as night falls, the party members notice glowing messages on their right arms. Most read “seek the domed library”, while Exavior’s message reads “trust the surface dwellers”. Some time later, Splug sneaks past the guards to let the party out of their cages, and explains why he is on their side (after a number of encounters that may or may not be filler). Splug has been plagued with dreams of the simpler life the Bullywugs lived as non-humanoid animals, before something went horribly wrong. The world as he knows it is a wasteland, plagued by demons and elementals, and the party is the first group of humanoids he’s ever encountered. Splug isn’t sure what broke the world, but he is somehow convinced the party holds the key to making things right.

As the party travels to the library, members of the party vanish and reappear at random intervals. Every time this happens, aberrant monsters from the far realm appear and attack the party. At the same time, miniature portals appear on the battlefield that the party can use to teleport short distances during the battle. The portals dissipate a few minutes after the battle ends.

After 5 days of travel, the party arrives at the library and finds new gear and books that seem to be written by and addressed to the party members. Each member of the party has a book waiting for them, written by them and addressed to them. The books explain what caused the current state of the world:

When the gods won the war against the primordials who ruled creation, one of the primordials, known as the Blood Reaver, could not be killed. The gods then decided to imprison him in a miniature dimension, separate from the rest of existence, where he slumbered for tens of thousands of years.

Fast forward to the party’s era. A wizard named Farnum Elzwig is trying to find a way to conduct long distance travel without the use of portals. His experiments inadvertently cause the barriers between the planes to weaken enough to awaken the Blood Reaver from his age-old sleep. The resulting shock-wave kills one fifth of the mortal plane’s humanoid population instantly.

Before long the humanoid races band together and realize what is happening and what will eventually happen. The Blood Reaver is not yet completely awake, and the shock-wave was just the initial result of him stirring awake. Within less than two decades the Blood Reaver will be fully awake, which will trigger a second shock-wave that no intelligent humanoid will be able to survive. After that, he will start tearing at the boundaries of his prison, and when he finally breaks free, another age of primordials will fall on all of existence.

Farnum Elzwig managed to save himself from the gallows by coming up with a plan. The humanoids will evacuate the mortal plane as soon as possible to a place outside of existence. Farnum managed to create an area outside of normal reality that can connect to the planes of existence while belonging to none of them, and the humanoid realms then banded together to make it capable of sustaining life. The result is this campaign setting’s version of Sigil, the City of Doors.

At the same time, a party of adventurers will be sent forward in time, exploiting the newly flexible state of reality. Their mission will be to scout the world after the second shock-wave, find a way to re-establish the Blood Reaver’s prison, establish a safe haven for the humanoid races to return to, and, finally, reopen a portal for the people of Sigil to return to the mortal plane.

Because of the dimensional instabilities, the party members arrive in the future with no memory of their lives after the first shock-wave. Furthermore, some of the members randomly get sent back to their original place in time and are replaced by other party members (conveniently, this matches the list of current players in attendance). When back in their own time, the characters arrive with all of their memories intact, and are able to to report to the future population of Sigil on what they happen to find in the future.

The party also finds an item that will aid them on their quest: the first part of the Rod of Seven Parts. Loin, the party’s dwarf, takes the Rod, and immediately feels the urge to travel eastward. The party gears up, and starts their journey east.


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