Garret, Selta, Sid, Carlos, and newcomer Grigg had every intention of finding and rescuing their possessed and abandoned friend Armen Hammerman. It would be so simple. Walk back to the mausoleum, smash the sorcerer-king out of him, then get back to the Stag’s Head in time for happy hour.
And for a time, things went according to plan. The march out the mausoleum was largely uneventful. The group came across a man attempting to haul a heavy iron chest to the nearest town. Our adventurers could not think of a good reason for why the man might be doing what he was doing, so an impressive salvo of questioning was brought to bear on the poor sod. His answers were found lacking. It was decided the mystery should be solved by more… direct means.
The pixie that burst from the forcibly-opened chest was visible for but a brief moment. It arced across the sunlit plains and out of view as the man chased after it cursing. Selta quickly took hold of the man’s mind with his black magics, and a new round of questioning was issued. Alas, the man proved an uncooperative dolt and his simple, useless mind was returned to him once he was discerned to be of no use.
Oh yes, the mausoleum.
Several miles later the cursed tomb came into view. It was still thoroughly haunted (as evidenced by the ghostly wind still howling within), and thoroughly vacant. Closer inspection was halted as undead skeleton warriors burst from the earth below. The adventurers quickly dispatched ghastly sentries, and the main force that protected the mausoleum proper.
Upon entering the ancient structure the group was surprised to find a mysterious planar gateway in the center. It is well known that such portals are not to be trusted, so they began to throw all manner of objects through it. Rocks, missiles, chaos bolts, anything that wasn’t bolted to the walls really. Through the process of elimination it was determined that a living being should be sent through the portal. Carlos was staunchly opposed to the idea of sending his magical ermines through. Grigg, being the newest member of the adventuring crew, was ‘volunteered’ as the next-best alternative and was quickly roped up and lowered into the abyss.
It was soon discovered that the portal had a sucking ability that could pull everyone into it, and apparently this ability was triggered by lowering halflings into it. Imagine our hero’s surprise! They awoke on the other side clawing themselves from shallow graves. An eerie purple sky and barren plains landscape lay around them. The only notable feature of the new realm was an enormous rock arch. Suspended at the apex of the arch hung an inverted castle structure. The adventuring crew was super creeped out by the whole ordeal and decided that a long rest was needed to come to terms with their new predicament.
Their rest was unnaturally deep. They awoke back in the same beds that they had began their day in back at the Stag’s Head. None of the inn patrons or staff could provide an explanation for the group’s being there. Such a mystery! Our adventurers were left scratching their heads and determined not to leave their lost comrade to an unknown (but probably gruesome) fate.