Early in the morning, almost to early, there is a knock at the door. One of the maids is there after you unlock your door to report that High Priest Shim is waiting in the common room. Once everyone assembles Shim explains that this whole time the apprentices have been working to find information on the disappearance of Rorion and Tauwmeral. It seems they’ve only got a small lead. Shim points to an apprentice, who smiles weakly up at the group, then rambles on about what she has found. The young apprentice details the way she went back decade by decade looking for any information on the ruins. Nothing turned up, but she did run across something interesting, a page from a long forgotten book. Just one page was saved, most of it dominated by a picture, of a figure holding out one hand in the “stop” gesture the other hand holding a glowing slim bladed longsword. A shimmering “portal” seems to be closing before the figures power, a horde of scary shadows locked on the other side. On the bottom is a few lines of text, an ancient archaic version of common, that neither Shim or the apprentice can read fluently. The most important one is the word for portal, a word for open and close, with reference to magic. Another word that the apprentice can read is Intendant, with an honorific, as in THE Intendant. She isn’t certain but she remembers that honorific, from something else, but just can’t put her finger on it.
Walhand Sandtracker provides the Apprentice Arhanna the needed clue to get her mind working, an old elven tale. In it the elves of some southern country are enraged by a great even infesting their lands. The enemy uses portals to other worlds which is their greatest power and their weakness. Through an augury the Elven people find out the answer to their need lies in the north. So they put together a dozen ships and set sail into the great unknown. After many harrowing events the elves found the island, marked with a giant keyhole shaped cave, on that island one of them discovered great power. With it they returned home and locked the portals of their nemesis in their lands, thus winning the war.
Our heroes seek that power, or information on it, since it seems the power there was both for closing AND opening portals. Since the island is in the north the group quickly makes their way to the most knowledgeable people of the sea, sailors. All those men and women point a finger to one person the captain of the ship Coin Siren, one Neverlynn The Seacat.a Explaining to the group she is their only choice, she is almost certainly the only one to have traveled far enough to have seen the island, she will take the group… for a price.
The Price is the group helping her Haunt her ship, using a new magical ritual discovered in the south, she will imbue her prized vessel with certain magical abilities. The problem is that during it magical beings and creatures in the area become enraged, crazed, and attack. So she gets the Group to help in return for her help. The next day they they go to sea, to an area known for it’s infestation with Ice Mice, getting attacked soon after the ritual begins. Ice Mice of various sizes attack and are easily defeated by the group, lastly a Mermaid climbs the ship. Lash calls out, Emma punches her in the face, Walhand shoots her with a bolt almost before she can get on deck. Another quick couple of punches from Emma and she knocks the being out before it can say or do much, then chucks her over the rails, probably not never to be seen again.
Despite the danger Neverlynn takes the Coin Siren out the next day to the fabled island, to deliver the group. Inside the vast Keyhole shaped cave is a whole dock, with a hook that slams down on the deck of the ship, locking it in place. Off the ship the group go looking in the area for a way to release the ship, all they find are a bunch of dead yeti (blue ones), peppered with arrows. The dead or ancient, so is the writing used on the tablets used in the office they find, delivering back to Apprentice Arhanna.
Still looking for a way to unlock the ship the group searches far away from it, instead of right up by it. Going out into the city that stands above the cave and dominates one part of the island. From a high vantage they see all the doors of the city gates are open, the last of which is the only one active, with hundreds of blue distant shapes fighting hundreds of brown ones. The group assumes the blue dots are the strangely colored yeti of the area. From the high vantage point Borin Gromstock spots another Keyhole shaped cave, this one going down, the group decides to go there for their answer. After lots of steps the group treads into what they refer to as “The Downward Spiral” to discover a riddle set out for them. Putting the proper creatures to the proper pedestals they are granted access to the next level. Two more solved puzzles gets to an impossible one, but beings who came here before have solved the issue, ripping a hole to the next level. The group follows suit after Emma is temporarily turned to crystal, dropping down three more levels, to the ground floor.
A keyhole cut into the wall is glowing with unknown magic, the focal point of the room. After a little debate Emma sticks her hand into the hole, the power infuses her, she can now open and close portals. Up out of the Downward Spiral Emma tests her power by closing one of the gates, which was glowing to her eyes only the same way the keyhole once did, before she took the power. She releases the hook from the ship, jumps aboard, then lowers the hook for the rest of the group. While snickering about her joke she misses the evil glare of Captain Neverlynn and a dark shape in the water, seething with anger.