Tomorrow was indeed an interesting day. We’re eating breakfast when Jaros comes forth with an idea, a surprisingly radical course of action. We slay the Layer Lord, and then destroy the first layer or Carcerei, and free everyone wrongly imprisoned.
Two things about this plan strike me straight away
1) it’s an excellent solution to the problem of Carcerei and doesn’t involve wholesale slaughter.
2) Secondly it sounds awfully similar to what Klarissa told us Lucan is up to. I can’t remember if I made a note of that here, but he plans to open a gate between Carcerei and the Material Plane and unleash all the prisoners.
Zenrith Splintershield, the dwarven cleric says that rearranging the cosmos is not a new concept. He tells us the story of Oxipatus the Layer of Celestia that was lost to the Abyss. He tells us the tale of Adimarcus, a fierce military layer lord who led an unending war against the demons of The Abyss. Described as a mighty purple skinned angel, Adimarcus sent his armies and generals against the demons until they had had enough, and laid siege to Celestia. He was driven back to his keep whereupon he commited a high crime in the eyes of the rulers of Celestia: He gave his lead general (an Aasimar Paladin) Athax the gift of Immortaility. I confess to not understanding why this is such a crime as deities and other power houses are immortal also. Perhaps what was meant was that Athax was unable to die?
Regardless this is a fascinating concept.
Meerthan chimed in with his suggestion, a small strike force to tackle the layer lord. Maybe we can recruit the blacksmith who made the wee-jas mural to make some armour for us.
Zenrith comments that the layer lords have a “twisted insanity”. I make specific note of this because the mysterious note that accompanied the planar cage referred to an insanity that was stirring. Perhaps the mantle of the layer lord comes with an inherent madness?
If were are able to defeat the layer lord and take his mantle of power, presuming it doesn’t corrupt the wielder, would we be able to replace that hole in Celestia with this layer of Carcerei?
I can think of no better place than Celestia, the angelic archons have a keen eye for justice, if memory serves. They would have the wisdom and experience to handle the sheer number of souls on this plane in a case by case appropriate fashion.
Enough of my ramblings on the nature of planes and so on. The libraries of my mind are cluttered with such theories and errant facts as it is. I will not confuse this record of my memories with the facts in my head. We continued through the list of people to see; the Mayor of Caldarra. I was fairly apprehensive of this meeting, but we went to his mansion to speak with him regardless.
His orcish guards told us he was enjoying dinner at the Lady Rivaldi’s, and so we went there instead. The means by which we infiltrated the mansion are unremarkable; the doorservant didn’t ask many questions. I’ve committed an image of the lady’s dinner room to memory, as it was very interesting. There was a large selection of magical enhancements to the beauty of the room, Jaros later told me much of this was illusion. Bringing it back to my mind I can see the dining table has being overshadowed by a large tapestry, emblazoned with the same symbol that was Calimus’s birthmark; the symbol of the Layer Lords of Carcerei.
The mayor himself is a half elf, sporting symbols of Corellon Larethian, a surprising fact. I would have suspected a darker deity, or the misused symbol of Heironious at this point.
We were asked politely to wait outside, and whilst waiting Jaros indicates that what we’ve seen and what he’s seen are distinctly different. He saw a Beholder in the seat of the mayor. He explains this is due to some alchemical process as part of his training, to pierce illusions.
Anyway time passes and the meal is over. One of the guests takes a moment to us. Melogorn Thorek, a half-elf vampire indicates he’s aware of the mayor’s dual nature (confirming to use that Jaros isn’t just seeing things), and that the mayor has some form of deal going on with the temple of Wee-Jas.
It took a while but this connected some dots together: The note makes reference to the soul cage, the insanity, and “continued donations” to the church. At this point I’m drawing a mental line to connect the mayor to the note. There is something going on here which we’re edging around, perhaps Lucan’s plot?
If so then everything can be lined up like so: The mayor is involved with Lucan’s designs, he’s researching the nature of the soul, is funding the temple of wee-jas who is keeping the cage for him, “whilst the insanity continues to stir”. I believe once “the insanity” is sufficiently stirred some action will be taken involving the layer lord and the cage, maybe forcing the layer lord to open the portal back to the material plane?
Again, back from my musings: The mayor emerges from dinner and walks back with us. We explain the situation to him that the church needs money for repairs. He offhandedly says that “6000 gold should be enough” (that’s a LOT of money to just hand out like that) but insists on heading to the temple with us.
Upon arrival the reason for this seems clear: he thought we were just using his benevolance to church to take money under false pretenses. Of course we weren’t, and the damage to the temple from the battle with the golems is clearly visible to him. Everything is happily taken care of and we return back to the inn to consider what to do next.