A Shadow over Port Klaenth
After enduring the exhausting events of the previous day, the party was long in their rest and recovery, sleeping nearly through the next day at the temple of den Morrad. They finally rose, aching with stiffness and yet satisfied with the outcome of their efforts – the Mask was in the hands of the high priest Alyss.
Their satisfaction was cut short however, as they entered the chapel wing where Alyss was to be studying the Mask. She met them with a defeated look and a sigh, “I won’t bandy words friends”. The party is shocked to see her casually toss the artifact roughly onto the stone altar. “This mask is indeed a fake. It was cleverly enchanted with an illusion to make it seem powerful as such an artifact would be.” Her beautiful smile returns after a moment however, and she continues: "I’m actually quite proud of our forebears for setting up such a believable ruse. They even fooled the High Priest, though I’m not proud of it! Sadly with the illusion disenchanted this is nothing more than a wooden carving. We will attempt to enchant it once more so that it can again be placed on display and ‘guarded’, though the secret is now out. There is nothing to be done about that, so we must continue as we had before.
She also explains that after searching the temple and speaking with the priests, they’ve discovered that the missing body for the initial attack belonged to Daves Sentrendis (Dav-ES), a peculiar priest of their temple who tended to spend most of his time in his studies. Alyss brought the three to the chambers of Daves, where they found scroll after scroll of etchings detailing anatomy of humans, elves, dwarves, and halflings. Alyss explained that he was something of an eccentric, and believed that understanding the ways our bodies work would aid in how we can tend woulds and heal the sick. Indeed, Daves was among the finest healer in the temple of den Morrad, who are known more for their battle prowess than healing skills. Daves was also one of the few priests who had passed the tests to become part of the elite guard tasked with guarding the Mask. There are 16 priests who have the honor of protecting the most holy artifact of den Morrad, though she reminds the party that now 3 are dead and Daves is missing.
Alyss offers the party her thanks once again, and tells them she will need to search deeply for the next steps as no one in her order knows the location of the true Mask of the Seas. Someone out there is after it, and she would prefer she found it first. She bids them farewell and dives back into the dusty tome from which she had been reading.
The day was late and soon the revels of the 100 Day Celebration would commence. With an hour of daylight remaining, the party decided to split up to take care of some tasks before meeting up the next day. Thelkion and Telthoris decided to search for a tavern to enjoy a well-deserved meal. Gumbo, Toshi, and Kamesh decided that they would visit the local purveyor of magical goods before turning in.