Ground Zero

Inception

Be careful what you ask for.

Maximus returned from his personal errands. He comes looking for Aldebaron to help answer some questions about some missing spells of his. After doing some digging, Aldebaron discovers that a number of spells no longer seem to exist in addition to the _Wish_level magics for magic-users and illusionists. The full list is:

Magic User
1st: Unseen Servant, Shield, Tenser’s Floating Disc, Armor, Taunt
2nd: Zephyr, Rope Trick, Deeppockets, Magic Mouth, Forget
3rd: Blink, Windwall, Phantasmal Force, Material
4th: Dimension Door, Hallucinatory Terrain, Massmorph, Rary’s Mnemonic Enhancer, Wizard Eye
5th: Animate Dead, Contact other Plane, Distance distortion, Fabricate, Leomunds Secret Chest, Rock to Mud
6th: Water to Dust, AntiMagic Shell, Geas, Legend Lore, Reincarnate, Stone to Flesh
7th: Limited Wish, Statue, Simulacrum, Phase Door, Mass Invisibility, Duo Dimension
8th: Clone, Trap the Soul, Sink, Permanency, Mind Blank
9th: Wish, Astral Spell, Imprisonment, Succor, Gate

All Bigby’s Spells as well. Doesn’t appear to affect all of any other “named” spells.

Illusionist
1st: Gaze Reflection, Spook, Light
2nd: Whispering Wind, Misdirectin, Hypnotic Pattern
3rd: Delude, Non-detection, Continual Light
4th: Emotion, confusion, phantasmal killer
5th: Tempus Fugit, Summon Shadow, Magic Mirror
6th Phantasmagoria, Mislead, Conjure Animals
7th: Astral Spell, Weird, 1st Level Magic-Use Spells

There was no easy connection between all of them but they seemed to cross divination, resurrection, reincarnation and communication. But it wasn’t consistent across MagicUsers and Illusionists.

While we are investigating the missing spells, Angela, the person that manages the orphanage in New Critwall comes and notifies Maximus (and us) that something really crazy is going on in the Lands of Iuz. There are reports that a large physical gate (that might also be magical) has appeared in the capital city of Dorakaa. Hundreds of humanoid golems have come through and are decimating the city. The golems look familiar to us as they are identical to the ones that the doppleganger to Jet sent in a while ago. These dopplegangers were full of evil squirrels but so far the golemns that have been reported have not seemed to disgorge them. Reports say that the center of Dorakaa has fallen including the physical buildings as well. Anatoli uses the Eye of Thera to scry one of the clerks in Dorakaa that he remembers from the time we rescued Angela’s daughter from there. He confirms via scying that City Hall has been razed to the ground and all individuals inside appear to have been slain.

Other information also makes its way to us. Apparently the 8 tribes of Orcs in the Pomarj have voted Turrosh Mak to be the War Leader for a great assault on the surrounding lands.

At this point, Maximus calls “shenanigans” and says that this can’t possibly be true. Its just not possible. Orcs are Chaotic Evil, not Lawful evil. The world may be screwed up magically but there is no way that all the Orcs would change since they aren’t inherently magical in that way. Anatoli suggests that perhaps we never left Al’s head.

As we began to discuss this in earnest, one of Al’s highest level simulacrums came in and acted oddly and then collapsed and turned into a pile of snow and slush. That was odd enough and then apparently, it happened again. And again and again, the exact simulacrum did the exact same movements and the exact same motions. After doing this 5 times, it stopped. This further made us indicate that the world we were in wasn’t real.

At this point, Maximus put forth the concept that the reason we are trapped in Al’s brain is that it’s the only place that he can completely control everything and be able to cast 9th level spells. Maximus posits that if Al accepts his limitatins and that there is nothing special about him that should allow him to cast 9th level spells if no other elf can do it then they will be released. It takes a while but eventually all accepts that at least the current scenario won’t work but never quite accepts that he is just another elf like all the others. Apparently this was enough to get us out of the Ego World and back into reality. Mini, the psychic warrior that had brought Maximus into the Ego World then proceeded to remove a psyhic spike from Al’s brain. She said it was the psychic remnant of a powerful Psionic entity and was most likely what was interfering with the original surgery. The scarring that it left makes it extremely unsafe to do any more psionic surgery on Al and they are lucky to have escaped as it is.

Al still cannot cast 9th level spells. However, he has discovered that the Staff of MetaMagic that we retrieved from the Elven Graves Adventure can let him cast 9th level spells as 8th level spells at the cost of some charges from the staff of meta magic. All has also determined how to recharge the staff using the gems that were also found with it. its not obvious as yet as to where the energy is coming from.

After this was over, we did some tests to verify that we were indeed outside of Als’ brain. Once we were satisfied we decided to celebrate surviving by going to one of our favoriate bars in Greyhawk: The Crypt.

insert writeup of The Krampus here

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