Curse of the Crimson Throne

Hell's Heart

Legacy of Blood, Part 11

The Crimson Blades continue to battle with the exiled infernal duke Lorthact.

Three greater devils teleport into the room, a strange skeletal-looking creature and two rage devils. Lorthact snarls at them in Infernal, demanding what took them so long. The skeletal devil Vorbitor explains that the castle is under attack.

Vorbitor then slashes two holes in reality and thrusts his claws through to reach across the room to slash Flint. Egan, mistaking Vorbitor for an undead creature, blasts him with the radiant light of a sunbeam. While the light does little harm, Vorbitor is blinded by the spell. The adventurers redeploy to try to keep the rage devils busy.

Lorthact continues to flit about the room, avoiding the blades of the adventurers. He arrives at the portrait of Volshyenek Ornelos and tears the canvas away to reveal a strange mirror. While the rest of the party resists its allure, Ashla finds herself drawn to it—literally. She is sucked into the mirror and finds herself trapped and bound in a white void.

Lorthact then presses the attack, with help from his rage devils, while Vorbitor flounders blindly.

Ashla frees herself from her bonds and explores the blankness, discovering Armaitya is likewise trapped. Ashla retrieves the archon’s trumpet and blows it. The thunderous blast shatters the mirror, releasing Ashla and Amaitya. The archon rallies to the heroes’ side.

The Ornelos manor shudders under impacts from siege weapons. Suddenly, an earth elemental crashes through the floor. The creature then braces itself over the hole in the floor, while a chain rattles around its neck.

Ashla excitedly shouts that reinforcements are coming.

Lorthact, furious, unleashes blasts of prismatic spellfire. Flint is caught in one of the rays, which burns through him. His vision fades to blackness, but in his last moment of consciousness he feels a strange stretching sensation, as if his whole soul was being pulled out through his navel.

Laori and Chammady scale up the chain being held by the earth elemental. They gang up on the rage devils, while Lorthact flits around the room, hurling magic. Ashla is caught in a stray blast and is turned to stone. Lorthact grabs Nox and drains more of the fighter’s wits.

Flint feels a cool breeze on his skin and sea salt on the air. The ground rocks beneath his feet. Disoriented, he opens his eyes but is blinded by light. As his eyes adjust, he realizes he is on a boat, and not alone. Briefly concerned that he is riding the river Styx with Charon, as his vision clears, he sees that he is on a small yacht at sea with a beautiful blond half-elven woman. He has never seen her before.

But he knows exactly who she is. He met her outside of Korvosa, a little while after he had manifested there and encountered the devil. The two of them initially tried to kill one another, but once over that hurdle, they’d fallen in together and come to the city. She is Clairian Arrowsong, and the two of them had hoped to steal the Thassilonian medallion in order to perform the immortality ritual.

As two sets of memories rattle around his head, Flint comes to realize his soul has merged with the body of his missing clone. They are on a boat off the coast of what used to be Korvosa. Once she is assured that he is okay, Clairian points out a strange glowing shape in the sky, around which floats three beating hearts. The half-elf urges him to try to shoot them down.

Flint takes aim and lets fly, but the arrow goes wide—or so it seems at first. But Flint had unthinkingly adjusted his shot to correct for the wind. The arrow drifts back on course and strikes true, knocking one of the hearts from the sky.

Clairian lets out a cheer. “If you’d done that in the Magnimar tournament, you would have won 100,000 gold pieces!”

Back in the floating Ornelos mansion, Lorthact is shocked and distracted by this development, which creates an opportunity. Nox, clinging to the last shred of his wits, charges the infernal duke and seizes hold of him.

While Lorthact struggles to free himself, Arlynn, Irabeth, and Azeret charge him from three different directions. Serithtial pierces the fiend lord’s heart first, followed by the Harrowed Holy Avenger and Azeret’s spearpoint. The three blades clang together and are then repelled by a blast of infernal energy as the infernal duke finally dies. The entire Ornelos Manor lurches from the explosion and starts to tilt to one side. The adventurers realize it is starting to lose altitude.

Outside, Flint and Clairian witness the city of Korvosa bursting back into place. Flint sees the Ornelos Manor slowly tumbling out of the sky and grabs Clairian’s hand. Asking her to trust him, he drinks a potion of fly and sets out for the manor.

Within the falling fortress, the adventurers who are able to fly work to evacuate those who can’t. Egan, assuming the form of a giant roc, clutches the petrified Ashla in his talons. They also take care to bring Flint’s corpse. The party flees through the hole blasted in the floor.

They meet Flint in the air and he briefly explains his situation. Changed by the experience of merging with his clone, Flint decides to officially stay “dead” and plans to depart the city with Clairian after making his goodbyes to Valeria and his friends.

The rest of the party returns to Castle Korvosa, where they are welcomed in the throne room by Ileosa and her Gray Maiden followers. She leaves the throne to Nox and Cressida, and instead leaves the city with Sabina and a small band of loyalists.

The party updates Cressida and Neolandis about the demise of Lorthact and the passing of Flint. Egan takes some time to de-petrify Ashla, who reunites with Vencarlo. Headmaster Ornelos thanks the adventurers for saving his family. They apologize about destroying his house, but he insists it’s fully insured. In fact, bricks from the Ornelos manor are already starting to snap back into place.

The cost to the city was high, but the threat of the Infernal Duke has finally been put to rest—and with it, hopefully the curse of the Crimson Throne.

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