The diplomatic group of Billywig, Shamgar, Tullie, Dash, and Hoerig receive a briefing from Captain Masaki on the two houses the group will be meeting with: Hlalu, the second most powerful of the major houses, led by a Tiefling known only as Heir 27 and Dres, the drow-led house holding the most sway of any of the houses.
The group, split amongst themselves where to start, make their way to the Hlalu headquarters once Masaki finishes the briefing. After a short wait, the VEx diplomats met with Heir 27, who brings along two of his own siblings/advisers, Lineage and Effort.
The negotiations start off simple enough, both sides opening admitting recent Redoran attacks, and on the surface Hlalu seems interested in an alliance. But as details start to be negotiated, the Tieflings are hesitant to commit to anything, leading the VEx contingent into making the first demand, men to bolster the ranks of the attack.
With a framework of the demands on the table, Heir 27 agrees to assist if the group handle a small task for Hlalu. One of the properties in Hlalu controlled land, owned by a Mr. Weatherstone made a request for armed assistance, making preposterous claims about demons stealing his livestock. Suggesting that taking care of this matter would be an excellent show of faith, the VEx group make their way towards the Weatherstone property, whose mansion is topped with an ominous giant steel crow.
Mr. Weatherstone is more than pleased when the heavily armed group arrives, not seeming to notice the VEx insignias worn by the mercs. His story is similar to what Heir 27 had said, claiming demons have been stealing his livestock and that they are hiding in a nearby cave. A quick investigation of the livestock area supports this claim; the smell of brimstone mixes with the normal muck of such a place.
Making their way to the cave, the group casually enters, not expecting there to be an imp swarm and a small pack of heretic shifters waiting for them right inside the cave. A fight that seems to be going somewhat too easy for the VEx group becomes chilling when a haunting female scream of pain and terror echoes from deeper within the cavern.
Dash, either in his battle rage or desire to save the pitiful victim runs ahead. Hoerig follows to watch over the half-orc, while everyone else takes a quick moment to catch their breath. When the remaining three pushed on, they find Dash standing on top of a small mountain of broken bodies, with demons composing the leeward and shifters composing the windward. Hoerig’s collection of bodies is somewhat more pitiful, but he is there mainly as the distraction that fuels Dash’s grisly engine of destruction.
Billywig’s arcane storm clears the cavern of most of the remaining demons and heretics, making room for the larger demon hiding in the back of the cave. It tries everything in its foul bag of tricks, including stampeding the VExers, but in the end it is not strong enough to take even the tired and bloody Dash down.
The horrific scream fills the cavern again, and this time, tired and battered, everyone pushes on. This final section of the cave has a small fetid pool of water, more heritic shifters, and a humanoid woman bloated to four times her size. The VExers watch as another shifter is born fully grown from the tortured woman, who gives no sign of slowing down her tainted reproductive ways.
The final onslaught is enough for Dash to fall, finally accepting aid from Hoerig and Shamgar that he had been refusing up to this point. Hoerig lets his new groupmates see the trick he can do when he disables the magic sword the priestess was going to gravely wound Dash with. Tired and nearly out of breath, the group clears the cavern and give the poor woman the release from her twisted existence that only death can grant.
As the group finally gathers their wits and their breath, Tullie notices a small portal that leads to some accursed plane. After tinkering with it and making things worse, Shamgar performs a ritual to seal it up, preventing any more demonic incursions.
Vicious Longsword +2 and Command Circlet from the cult leader
Ritual Books: Feat of Strength, Magic Circle and Duplicate
30 gp in coins
50 gp in contraband religious items
250 Fame and 450 Karma for defeating the cultists