Cartographer's Quest

This is why you don't fight Monsters past 11 O'Clock.

After their near calamitous encounter with the Blue Slime, the party discovered a map to the first floor of the Shadowfell Keep, and in turn discovered note of a secret area close by. Seeking shelter, they took refuge in a small and well hidden cavern. Inside they discovered a motley bedroll and some provisions.

Feeling that this was the best place to take an extended rest and deal with the events that had occurred, the party barricaded the small entrance passage, and settled down to rest. Rendar took comfort in the corner opposite the entrance to keep watch on anything that might try to infiltrate the room, and thus leaving him in the best position to react. Aster set up further down the room, and overcome with exhaustion, promptly fell asleep without even bothering to remove her new found mask. Morthos, wary of the events that had just occurred, settled down to rest opposite of Aster. His last thoughts were ones deeply troubled by suspicion and doubt.

As sleep overtook the party, so too did strange, and even terrifying Dreams. Rendar was beset by strange visions, and found himself caught in a bizarre and fantastic world that rapidly changed even as he stood in the midst of it. Environments blended, and merged, shifting seamlessly between wild fields, dark caverns, and lonely underwater depths. His last sight was of a strange woman wearing a blue dress of peacock feathers that seemed to flow into eternity. Dreams of being pulled down into water, only to find himself falling through the sky bring him back to consciousness.

Morthos in turn, suffered under a strange vision as if brought to him straight from the vibrant madness of the feywild. As he became lucid enough to comprehend events around him, he found himself flying (or perhaps Falling might be more accurate) through a amber, violet, and crimson sky. A Dwarf with Antlers on his head rode across the sky on a horse of pure white, battling against a dark pack of Azure Wolves. Ravens fluttered across the starlight above, while clouds drifted around the sunset below. Falling through the clouds, he emerged into a realm of pure darkness. Within this darkness, he was surrounded by laughter as wild as it was genuine. A face appeared to him from the inky blackness. A Elven (or Eladrin?) appeared before him, garnished in a stunning array of neon colors. Blues, Greens, and Reds flowed and wove into a luminescent mane of blond hair. All features below the face merged into a indescribable flux of colors.

Retreating from Morthos’ vision, he was once again surrounded by dark… only for the darkness to suddenly part like curtains upon a stage. A blinding orange radiance overtook him as he found himself in the presence of a neon hued … Woman? Swathes of colors skimmed over the surface of her body in a state of flux, while crimson red hair drifted off her head, shifting into a bizarre plumage of red feathers just above the neck. Two brilliant yellow eyes stared out and then Morthos dove into a inky patch of skin. Teal Skies filled with jellyfish were violated by the falling outline of a humanoid shape that acted as a window to bright crimson tones. Morthos caught brief glimpses of Swamps decorated with banners, and filled with Elves, only to reveal their lower forms to be serpentine. He saw the reflextive glimmer of a crystalline court ruled over by a Mermaid decorated in vast riches. Finally, he saw a mysterious figure being fought over by two monstrous forms, their red and blue colors reflected each in one eye as they each pulled at a arm…

This only leaves Aster. Poor Aster suffered the worst out of all our Heroes. First a vision of a drowned skeleton, surrounded by Sea Grass and Flowers. Then the horrific sight of a Paladin who’s very form was coming undone. The Dark Outline of a Skeleton with Sword and Armor contrasted by a overwhelming white background. This blinding light incinerated the Paladin, and from his dark ashes, something took shape. Against the white, the face of a Woman, and a monstrous beaked figure with thick billowing clouds of smoke pouring out of it’s nose. Piercing white Eyes stared out with menacing intent. The vision shifts to the shaft of a ethereal stringed instrument. A sad, sorrowful melody resonates from the ghostly instrument and the vision slowly transforms into the shape of a young man. Flanked by Gold, Sepia, and Shadow, a young man appears to hang his head with his eyes shut softly. He holds something, yet it is not quite clear what it is. It could be simply a flower such as a Rose, or perhaps a rod of some kind.

The vision dramatically spirals and erodes like sand in the wind, and inky black rain to begin to splatter onto canvas. Three twisted Avian-Man creatures descend and begin to viciously attack a young naked woman. White light radiates from her form as she struggles against their claws, and the frightful snapping beaks, with her black hair painfully fearfully shaking back and forth Faces fly at Aster, faces wracked with pain and suffering. Misery is etched onto their features. New visions of people who’s flesh slowly transforms into Wood and Marble, with talon like hands. Mountains of Stone grow faces and lie in slumber as a giant Wyrm descends from the heavens to unleash fire onto a small village. It’s terrible form snakes across the sky, seeming to stretch for eternity, while vast feathered wings block out the sun. Black clouds of smoke overtake everything.

A form reveals itself from this blackness, it’s skin covered in all fashion of strange inscriptions etched like a painful tattoo. The eyes focus with devilish intent, and fanged teeth reveal themselves from behind humanoid lips. A red tongue licks the teeth and lips. A whirlwind filled with violet feathers sweep across and dissolve the dark figure. Staring out at Aster from a small gap in the feathers, facial features, and a Amber eye with the diamond iris of a cat reveal themselves.

Everyone awakens from their uneasy dreams, but does not speak of what they have seen.

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