Dark Sun: Grave Burden

E03: Unveiled

The party leaves the city of Balic with the Rees merchant caravan headed for Fort Glamis. The Caravan takes them to the rocky badlands near fort and the characters depart them (details of this trip are missing). At this point, the group is on their own. They must navigate the dangerous lands that lay before them. They climb through the rocky barrens, and after awhile they stumble upon a tiny oasis. The oasis includes a small cluster of palm trees and a mound of shrubs and dead sticks. Armeis goes to drink from the oasis, but discovers that the mound is actually a creature as it sends a volley of sinewy harpoons at him. A scrapping between the PCs and the Chathrang takes place, but the characters eventually emerge victorious when the group kills it.

The group picks up where they left off and travels through the narrow canyons in the rocky badlands to find Veloc. When they arrive, Veloc approaches them while his two tamed cilops watch on. Veloc takes them inside to discuss their plight and discovers that the visible signs indicate that the party is cursed. Veloc reveals black veins under Dalamar’s pale skin, one indicator of the curse (no mundane afflictions are known to cause this). Veloc concludes that the party was most likely cursed by the Praetors, and then thrown down into the old crypts to dwell with the other undead there eternally. The druid suggests that the only way to relieve themselves of this curse is to kill the templar(s) who created it.

The party stays overnight at Veloc’s home. At some point during this stay, Veloc uses a druidic ritual to attempt to stave off the curse’s effects long enough for the characters to rid themselves of it permanently. The ritual is overseen by Armeis, who isn’t afflicted. An hour or so later, the cursed party members notice that their symptoms have been reduced dramatically (almost back to their former health). Veloc says this remission is temporary, and the characters can expect it to last a few weeks at most. Because their mission to find and kill a specific Praetor(s) is dangerous, Veloc suggests that the party seek out a half-elf Patriciannamed Javairre. Veloc says that Javairre was the last person he spoke to in Balic and that at one point in time he had ties to the Veiled Alliance. The Veiled Alliance could potentially have resources to find the templars responsible for the curse that would eventually kill the PCs and reanimate them as undead.

The party gathers up food and water and sets out for Balic again after their curse is temporarily tamed. When they reach the city a couple days later, they visit the Villa precinct where Javairre’s olive & grape vineyard is said to be. The PCs arrange a meeting with Javairre, and discuss their predicament and association with Veloc. This prompts a response from Javairre, who asks them to join him at a nondescript warehouse near the agora the next night.

The party meets him at the warehouse, where they find several other various people of various races standing about and conversing. It is revealed that this is Javairre’s Veiled Alliance cell, which he leads. The party meets a few of the members, including Korvath (a mul preserver), Zagaulo (a human minstrel), and Grobulus (a dwarven teacher). They eventually come together to discuss current affairs. After this, Javairre introduces the PCs to the rest of his VA cell.

It is not long after this that everyone hears the loud slam of the warehouse door being broken down, and many rushing footsteps pouring into the building. The templars appear to have busted the entire meeting. Some of the Veiled fight the templars, but the PCs run with Javairre downstairs. Armeis seals off the hallway so that no one else could leave this way, which earns a malevolent glare from Korvath, who is trapped on the other side to deal with the Praetors.

The PCs burst through a door to come into a basement-level corridor, which may have another exit. They are cut off by templars who seem to have planned around this potential escape. The party begins to face the templars with violence, and they are rewarded with the same in kind. A dispelling duel ensues between Armeis and a few of the templars, but they eventually arrive at a stalemate. The PCs surrender after a time, and they are carried off and thrown into a caravan filled with several other Veiled members, who display broken flesh and broken spirits.

The party witnesses Javairre being beaten and then dragged away separately from the rest. At this point the crodlu begin to pull them away in their shackles and caravan. They arrive at the shore of the Estuary, where they are said to be transported to Uriah’s Keep

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