After returning to Water Forge I found myself feeling most bad for forgetting that I possessed the heart artifact that could potentially have saved Mana for her bloody fate. As even the possession of her many fine bits did not ease my guilt, I set out alone to return to the underground passage where we had left her body, to try to bring her back to life.
It took me three days, but I did not encounter any undead until I reached the passage itself. I was able to sneak past them, and also steal a map which outlines the future movement of the undead into the greater portion of Immoren. When I reached Mana’s body, I attempted to revive her by inserting the heart into her chest, but sadly I had to replace each and every bit I had removed from her (except of course for her natural heart) in order to bring her back. It was rather difficult to slide the gloved skin of her hand back into place, but I managed to piece her back, and then bring her back to life. Mmmhmm.
Mana was a bit perturbed at the loss of her mechanical arm which had, of course, been transplanted to Anastacia, so we set off for Waterforge to reunite with the others. As we left we unfortunately alerted the undead to the loss of the map, and were chased into a ravine where we jumped into a river. Since neither Mana nor I have the capacity to swim, we nearly drowned in the river, and unfortunately escaped from the undead without collection even so much as a single bit.
When we returned to Waterforge, we began the journey to the Wyrm ceremony in the desert where last year we were so blessed by the Wyrm. On the way we sent messages to our contacts around Immoren to warn them of the coming of the undead, but we didn’t receive responses from anyone but Redbeard, who seemed more concerned with his dating service than with the invasion of the many undead future-bits, which he will no doubt burn to ashes and destroy without much effort. It truly is tragic I haven’t yet convinced him to learn to use cold. We could have quite an enterprise together, Redbeard and I. I must remember to address the issue with him when we see him next. Mmmhmm.
When we reached the shack near where the ceremony would begin, we were sent out after several cyclops, with the direction to bring back their hearts and eyes as a sacrifice to the Wyrm. Some members of the party felt it would be necessary for us to plan, but as it turns out we are barely capable of such a task. MmmMmm. Ug (who, in his clerical human shape is much squishier, though no less full of bits) was ambushed by the cyclopes, and Tobe was knocked out and carried away. We were attacked in particular by a hidden javilineir, who nearly killed several of us before I magic missiled him and threw an illuminated Drudge fallopian tube to light up his area so our fighters could see. I was able to collect many fine bits from the cyclops, save of course the bits which we were required to bring back for the ceremony.
During the ceremony we ate our bits and were blessed by the Wyrm. Hog seems to have aged several years, and I was blessed by the Wyrm with small wings and a tail, which raises the number of bits I am possessing significantly. Haakim was able to grow back his leg, and Anastacia her arm. We will have to return for the ceremony next year, to receive further blessings from the hand of the Wyrm.
We then set out for the Thornwood to ensure that they received our message about the invasion of the undead. We discovered there several dangerous large rocks, some of which are able to stand and nod and seem moderately intelligent (if bitless.) Delilah decided to hit on the lovely Tharn ladies, which nearly got us all into a fight with the lot of them. We were also attacked by many vines from above, like the one that choked me the last time I climbed a tree. Several of our party members were carried away into the treetops, but we managed to get everyone back without fatalities, and which is more I was able to collect a sackful of plant bits, which will be most useful for creating low level enhancers, even if does increase my load considerably.
During the course of the fight, Ug set the woods on fire with his fireballs, but I was able to use my newly learned pyrotechnics spell to turn that fire into a choking smoke before it spread and burned down the forest like we did in Ios. That is proving to be the most useful spell I know, and I will make good use of it in the future, I am sure.
When we reached the village, we were met by the cleric whose powers Ug stole, who was still rather disgruntled, as I don’t think he has yet returned to full power. I didn’t tell him that even his bits will be much less useful these days. Under the circumstances, I didn’t think the news would be helpful. Mmmhmm.
We were also met by a giant of a man who tells us while they are fortifying themselves against the possible future invasion, they have not heard from Kaya in some time. He asked if we would check on her, as she has gone to confront Krueger near my swamp and the fort where I first found my party of slayers who have helped me to acquire so very many fine bits.
When we neared my swamp, I went to visit my mentor, who has asked me to travel deep into the desert after a beast that changes and shifts. I think it may be a while before we are able to venture out that far, but I look forward to finding the pit dweller, as he has promised me two bits from his collection, and I have my eye on some particularly fine ones.
We then flew over the pit where we had long ago encountered mechanithralls (fine bits, those had) and Mana and Vasili remained in the ship, airdropping us from above. In the pit we found Kaya, sadly turned to stone (the state of those poor bits! I cannot even check on their health in that condition!) and were surprised from behind by a voice, who told us we should not have come.