This is a follow-up post to my recap of episodes 1-100. Hopefully between the two, people can catch up with adventures in The World. Special thanks to Adam and crew for providing the previous episode recaps on twitter. It made this much easier and probably more detailed.
Ramus awakens from a coma and can eat, drink and be merry once again. After leaving their camp, the party fights and kills an undead giant monster (unrelated to Maharib’s clan). White lotus bursts from the mouth but Ramus lights it on fire. Yotta uses his soul-seeing mirror on the giant. Ramus then uses the mirror on himself. He instantly blacks out (with lasting consequences). Seeing that, Yotta looks at Ramus through the mirror and now needs alcohol to stay sane. When Maharib later sees Yotta completely drunk, he calls Yotta a disappointment and leaves him with a family of peasants. Yotta will remember this. Everyone else heads towards the monastery of The Sun.
The people of the riverlands have lost faith in the gods, instead follow the Necromancer King, called “The King of Black Rivers”. After a physical, the party is told Ramus will recover given time. The monastery seems to be in the hands of a Necromancer King lieutenant, Mouthful of Worm-ridden Grave Dirt. The party meets back up, though tensions are still high. Yotta tries to apologize to Maharib and gives his jug over for safekeeping. This is not only the source of his sanity, but his monastic weapon. Berg meets Grave Dirt’s son Sen, who is incredibly creepy. He fails a performance check with his lute, and the kid eventually backs off. A later check, however, results in Berg making a few friends and sharing food in drink at camp. Yotta fights with a rowdy group called the Bloody Scale Revenge Society. I am sure we have never seen them before, and never will again.
The party has a meeting with Grave Dirt. They eat peaches. The pit hatches into the same white lotus the party has seen a few times now. They are given a mission to kill a Court of Swords captain, Southern Wind. They are told they may meet with Abbot Rama (Yotta’s dad), so they do so. He looks sickly, and his eyes are gouged out. He is chanting, alongside a contingent of priests in similar condition. Above them is a cursed pool. Yotta fights his dad (both are monks), but it does not go well for the son. Ramus banishes Yotta’s dad and breaks the ritual. The pool collapses and the party (and mansion) ends up in a strange, disturbing place. Ramus is the only one who is at ease here.
The party (except Ramus) can’t rest in this world. While searching the surrounding area for vessels to contain food and water, they encounter maggots/demons/shadows eating from a green glow. The light calms the party, except for Ramus. Some strange people show up, claiming the “vein”. The new party shoots Maharib with some kind of bug gun. The newcomers notify the panicking party that it is too late, and that Maharib will die. Obviously the party struggles desperately to save him, while the onlookers don’t understand what is the big deal about dying. Eventually they extract the bug and Maharib lives.
The newcomers are the blue-skinned and horned “Formidable Gun Princess of Black Onyx”, “The Business”, and the drug-addled vein-finder “Too Much Talk Too Little Action”. They explain that the eye of the moon returns all things to life (once per cycle). This is the realm of the Mara, the Court of the Void.
After chatting up their new companions, Yotta drinks void liquor and can finally rest. The party offers them food from The World, but it tastes disgusting to those from the CoV. Maharib and Yotta still argue about Yotta’s need to drink.
Three Mara fight for control of nearest necropolis- Opportunity. To enter, the party requires either papers from a mara or vein-hunter permits. Mara currently in charge of the city is The Divine Comedy (The Fool Inverse). The other two groups are the Basilica and the Dragon Knight. Ramus gives his Bag of Devouring to the Judge as a bribe to enter the city. Apparently, items dropped into the bag end up here. Berg tries to bribe his way in with a song, but is found blasphemous, and guards try to take him away. He fights the Judge with his hammer lit, panicking the crowd. Yotta gets taken captive, Berg escapes into the city, Ramus has already paid the bribe, and Maharib doesn’t get involved in the fight.
Berg meets “Idle Hands”, who says he will take him to Ramus, hoping to extract a fee from Berg’s old friend. Ramus crits a charisma save and becomes friends with a bunch of merchants, apparently in the fleshcrafting business with “Where Did I Leave My Aorta”. Yotta is thrown in jail with some kind of wolf-monster, but is then extracted by The King of The Divine Comedy. She has the appearance of a small girl, and is joined by The Knight, a sickly, bed-ridden fellow. The King says Yotta reminds her of a toy she once had (It was Chuckles, who is never, ever, going to return). Yotta is dolled-up to be presented to The King’s Mara master. Maharib goes to the bug-ranch of Obstinate Bug-******, mentioned by Gun Princess as the source of her ammunition. She had been headed there as the others entered the necropolis.
Maharib fights a baby/grub/beholder thing and lots of grubs. Apparently the creatures had taken down Gun Princess. They also dispatch Maharib. Ramus, Berg, and “One Last Job” (Ramus’s friend) go to visit Aorta. Aorta is a grotesque creature with many, many arms. The two consider getting Berg wings by letting Aorta examine him. Yotta begs The King for his equipment, but no luck. Maharib meets Bug-****** and saves Gun Princess’s heart so she might be reformed at the end of the cycle. Berg and Ramus stay at Miss Tippet’s, and learn of a new vein set to form nearby (Aorta’s claim). Ramus uses magic to track down Yotta. The two set off for the Divine Comedy’s playhouse, with Little Action alongside them (he has yet to learn what happens to those who stick around Berg).
Yotta meets The Queen and The Paige. The Queen is a dandy, and the Paige is monster. The Queen knows about the party, and their origins in The World. He tells Yotta to reunite with them, and that he would offer assistance. His plan would certainly stick it to The King. Maharib learns that his new friend at the ranch used to be an intellectual, but lost parts of himself with continued death. Gun Princess reforms, but doesn’t wake up. They are both upset, but Maharib gains fake IDs for the group in exchange for his help. Yotta is unveiled in a performance at the playhouse, then escapes using a key given to him by the Queen. Yotta, Ramus, and Berg fight to escape the playhouse, but leave Little Action behind (oops!). Maharib and his bug-loving friend decide to give Gun Princess a juice-transfusion with Maharib’s blood. Gun Princess awakens, but her eyes are that of a goliath.
After abandoning Little Action in the playhouse, the fighting group heads to the neutral ground of Miss Tippet’s. Gun Princess speaks giant now, has no memory of her past-self. Our resident bug enthusiast is upset by this, since he has lost many of his own memories (and he obviously had a thing for GP). The Knight gives Yotta back his gear. The Knight is a diviner like Little Action, and can sense changes coming to Opportunity. Maharib gives Gun Princess a new name, Amira. The two of them head towards the city, and Maharib promises to burn it down.
Amira and Maharib reunite with the group in combat against the King and a Judge. Overall, this doesn’t go very well. Everybody except Berg and Ramus die (as seems to be their fate), with Berg and Ramus knocked unconscious and left alone by the victorious Judge. They go to visit Aorta. Aorta has a vein they may be able to use to get home. Things turn south, and Berg kills Aorta so much that even the green moon will have trouble reforming the paste.
The King takes the body of Yotta away and tells the Judge to find the others. Amira and Maharib end up with the other dead bystanders from the marketplace, awaiting the cycle to be brought back to life (a common occurrence here). Amira wakes up, but Maharib does not. She decides to transfuse her blood into Maharib, since the opposite worked for her. He awakens, but finds Bahath distasteful now. She takes it instead. Maharib is now part tiefling, like Amira is part giant. Someone is following them.
Berg and Ramus go through tunnels that once contained Aorta’s roots, heading towards Miss Tippet’s. The one following Amira and Maharib is a tiefling named “Unfailing Redeemer of Broken Promises” (zeke’s new character, shadow sorcerer). She works for The Basilica, but wants to leave the Void with them- to The World. Ramus and Berg meet an associate of Ms. Tippet’s named “Mr. Nice Guy”, who says he will help them reunite with their friends. Mentions that they will need a diviner to find the vein (Oops! Little Action is in the possession of The Divine Comedy still!).
Everyone meets up. Little Action is in the Wolf Pit, an extremely well-guarded prison of The Fool Inverse (Yotta was there earlier). Broken Promises wants to make a deal to get their diviner back, and Maharib insists that any deal should also give them Yotta’s body. Berg gets new armor, and Maharib gets a shield and an axe, provided by Broken Promises’ network. BP meets with an associate, “Still Hands Holding A Large Knife”, and she hands over her intelligence network in exchange for smuggling them out of the city. She asks around about the Wolf Pit, but is overheard by one of her rival’s informants. The rest of the party decides to leave Yotta’s body behind if it means saving their own lives. BP goes to meet with a contact from the Divine Comedy, but it turns out to be a trap from the informed rival. Luckily, Ramus had been scrying on her, so the party is not far behind.
After the battle, Maharib, Amira and Broken Promises go to Miss Tippet’s, but find the allegedly neutral grounds to be desecrated by the Divine Comedy. Among the ruins, the group finds a corpse with a message, or perhaps a joke. Berg and Ramus wait at the safehouse/bar of Still Hands, resting up. The punchline is the body exploding. Ramus crit-charms bar toughs, eventually crit-gambles to take everyone in the bar for all they are worth, but crits again so there are no hard feelings- all the bar patrons have a drink “on him” and the merry-making continues. Amira and Broken Promises make a vow to help each other escape the void. BP goes to The Divine Comedy while the other two return to the safehouse. Among the riches Ramus acquired were a magical necklace of protection and new armor for Maharib. With the peace of Miss Tippet’s broken, all three Mara begin lurching towards the city.
BP bribes a court official to meet with the Divine Comedy. She sneaks around and finds the entrance to the Wolf Pit. She then meets with the Paige and the Knight and exchanges Yotta’s body and Little Action for all of her memories of her employment. They are violently removed. Little Action and Yotta’s body are returned to the party, as promised. Reunited, the party goes inside. After removing a note from within the mouth of the corpse, Yotta’s body attacks the group. After defeating what remains of Yotta, they ignite the corpse and hold a funeral.
The party goes to meet with Mr. Nice Guy in order to leave the city. Juice is bursting from the vein beneath the city, and with it, the blue sky of The World. The party has to fight with creatures infected with juice energy, and Little Action is killed (but this is The Void, after all). They take the body with them and head towards an old brothel. Ramus’s friend from the bar, “Ten Billion Tiny Legs”, gives Ramus an amulet designating his protection, then goes back to fighting the Divine Comedy. In the brothel, they meet a former associate of Broken Promises - “One White Moth”. BP doesn’t remember her. One White Moth tells Maharib that he shouldn’t trust BP, and that Mr. Nice Guy is either dead or in the Wolf Pit. In order to find a safer escape, the party searches the basement for one of Aorta’s tunnels. Berg finds such a tunnel, but it is full of grass and other plant life of The World.
Little Action says he needs juice in order to do his job. It is unclear if this is true or he is just an addict. It is reminiscent of Yotta’s alcoholism. The party decides to go through the tunnel. Ramus hears wind chimes from his childhood somewhere in the tunnel. The party encounters voidlings (cosmological anti-bodies) trying to repair the damage to the vein. Party nearly wipes in battle to the voidlings (LA dies, again). Towards the end of the fight the party encounter some random void-born that seems to have a portal to The Void (proper, what seems to be some kind of anti-Fountain) in his chest. Ramus’s unconscious body and BP are both drawn into the darkness. BP uses her cloak to dimension-door out of the dark, empty destination. She and Ramus were isolated, so she cannot bring him with her. Maharib goes in after Ramus. This seems to be the same location that the dead in the CoV go to toss their unwanted things (including memories) into oblivion. Ramus, however, is not alone. He is with some grand and wicked king. After a confrontation, the king offers Maharib a cursed weapon and Ramus’s return in exchange for a pledge of fealty to Ramus, as his dark knight. A great green worm can be seen in the background. Maharib agrees, and returns to the tunnels with Ramus and a new Axe, The Wicked Edge of The Void.
Amira and Berg don’t like this new axe. The party makes it out of the tunnels and head towards Bug ******'s ranch. There they meet a pair of bumpkins who claim to be disciples of some holy prophet that lives there. Maharib confronts this prophet, who is his “friend” after what must have been many more cycles of death. He doesn’t seem to remember Maharib, or much of anything. He has become a priest of nihilism, calling all to the oblivion of The Void. BP and the disciples work on cutting a giant spiral into the farm grounds. Ramus and Berg realize that Little Action is acting strange- like a vampire. Eventually, this problem is solved rather efficiently: LA is decapitated and his head kept in a bag on Ramus’s belt. Add “magic item craftsman” to Ramus’s resume. After the spiral is complete, BF shoots both of his “disciples” and the blood fills the spiral, activating it.
BF’s circle summons a massive green worm (but much smaller than the one seen in The Void). Upon its defeat, there is a staircase leading down. When denizens of the CoV come near it, they find themselves giddy and hallucinating. After convincing the prophet that Ramus and Maharib are emissaries of the Great Green Worm, he agrees to help them (though he won’t go with them). He grants Amira and BP the gasmasks needed for them to vein-hunt, as the staircase seems to be Aorta’s claim. He also grants the party three tarot cards (VII of Cups, IX of Wands, and V of Coins), which seem to have something to do with the vein.
As they decend into the vein, the walls are marked with images of an ancient people (the blue ancestors of giants) battling some unrecognized enemy. Maharib even recognizes the stars in the sky of the image, and could use them to find this location in The World. The tarot cards entrusted to them seem to be keys, opening the doors to further passage. The doors open to a sacrificial chamber, and the bowl containing the sacrificial flame is adorned with celestial writing. Berg reads it out, a blessing for the founding of a new city: one of brass. The room has no visible exits, and eventually Berg decides to make one. He strikes at the wall with his ignited hammer, and the light makes the wall lose its opacity. Maharib goes through the wall and enters a desert of ash, a remnant of the city that once stood there. He also sees some ghosts or memories of the Immortals before the city was founded. The memory is looped. BP also pushes through the walls, but Ramus, Berg, and Amira decide instead to give sacrifices to the flame. Amira sacrifices her horns, Berg the feather of Jubulent Black Gale, and Ramus an amulet of The Sun from his youth. Each sacrifice causes the flame in the room to brighten, changing the walls in the same way as the hammer’s light. BP removes her mask and immediately regrets it, as the air is drugs. The party then defeats a high-level undead, and head into the desert.
Ramus uses a spell to create a massive temple of a new religion, one of balance, of which Ramus sits at the head. Amira shows that she is slowly learning common, a language that she has not had since she was Gun Princess. She and BP are also working on forging a friendship, but it will take effort. The temple slowly gets devoured by an ash-storm, and the party thinks it may be a punishment for Maharib and BP not giving sacrifices. Maharib wishes to sacrifice Bahath, but it is no longer his sword. Maharib instead sacrifices something scrawled on a note, and BP gives up her name. This doesn’t change the storm. The party connects themselves with rope, and head out into the storm where they are immediately lost. The place seems to bear a grudge against Ramus and Berg in particular. After leaving the storm, the party reaches the road into the Orc slums from the City of Brass.
The group fights with a Hag disguised as an Orc lady after she fails to tempt Berg. Amira is attuned to Bahath. Berg should have died in combat, but he can now rage beyond death (14th level), and his wounds burst with the light of the Fountain. The hag falls. The party discovers that Berg’s artificial body (a spacesuit for Heaven) has made its way to this place. On its waist is the second magic item of Emperor Fei, “The Pillars of the Gate”, setting the attuned wearer’s strength to 25.
The party meets with the God of the former City of Brass in the remains of the temple plaza. He came here in sorrow when the city fell. He bears no grudge against Berg and Ramus, but says that the less enlightened spirits may not share this quality. He had sought the assignment for the city to be close to his friend, the sleeping Maru Bhavatti (I’m sure I butchered the spelling). Ramus says that he may have a job for the despairing god in the future. Berg confronts the ghost of an orc child who blames him for the destruction of his home. It gets emotional. The party performs a tarot reading at the former temple to The Star. The cards aren’t of the normal set, however. Everyone sees all the cards except Amira, whose card is only seen by Maharib. [Cards: Ramus- The False God, Maharib- The Black Knight, Unnamed- The Queen From Darkness, Berg- The End, Amira- The Sacrifice] The party reaches the final hurdle between the CoV and the World: the fortress.
The fortress is guarded by a god of Heaven, specifically of Judgement. Berg and Ramus are allowed to cross over, and one of the Maharib/Amira pair. The other, and Unnamed (formerly BP) must stay behind. A soul is needed to reach the other side. After negotiations break down (the party had compelling arguments, but this is the god’s reason for existing), they do battle. Immediately, the god kills Unnamed with Power Word: Kill. Unnamed nearly counterspells it (missed the target by one), but is unable. While the others fight desperately, and Berg discovers his new talent for throwing boulders, Ramus picks up Unnamed’s body and heads toward the gate. Dan states the Ramus had begun to love Unnamed, and that is why he is broken at that moment. This changes, however, when Berg successfully brings the god to the ground. After a grueling fight, the loss of Amira, and the (multi-hour) stupification of Maharib, the party gathers the bodies and weapons and walks through the gate to The World. Berg, Ramus, and one of the Maharib/Amira pair, just as Judgement had stipulated. They forget to close the door behind them. This will obviously have no repercussions.
The party is now between level 13 and 15. What will happen when they reach The World again? Keep watching Court of Swords to find out!