The Adventures of Annalax: Volume XXI
It has been a while since the last Annalax update. Partly because our D&D group missed a week or two, and partly because I wasn’t quite in the right state of mind. As such, I would like to thank the DM for helping me with the resulting summary. We resume at session forty three.
When we left off, the local Nightmares in the town were demanding the sacrifice of Yvette, a wholesome young girl.
It also turned out the town’s current Priest of the Eternal Flame is so young because he’s a recent replacement. The old Priest had been lynched. Specifically, he had been sending off birds to summon help against the Nightmares, and the corrupt Mayor/Burgermeister had spread a few lies among the populace, with predictable results. The Burgermeister, incidentally, is not only corrupt, but a bona fide sleaze-bag. The party did some investigating of this fellow, but could not find anything else to pin on him. Sometimes people are just sleazey without being monsters.
(Besides, Annalax has done far, far worse in his time).
Speaking of Annalax, he had been spending his time in the town disguised as a wandering Cleric of the Eternal Flame. To an over-the-top Poe’s Law degree. As such, he was being treated as annoying-yet-trusted fellow, and had a degree of hold over the young Priest. Annalax being Annalax, he decided to abuse this trust. His idea was that if he could but sideline the fellow, he could take control of the town’s Church, on behalf of Her Ladyship.
So he got himself a bottle of methanol from the tavern’s distillery, and lured the young Priest away for a religious chat. Annalax told him he had often heard of religious experiences, whereby people experienced visions, or even temporary blindness. Then, while our Goliath Barbarian caused a distracting commotion, he spiked the Priest’s drink, and used Prestidigitation to disguise the taste. Well, he is a Drow. Spiking a drink is a cultural pass-time, and his plan was merely to make the Priest ill, not to kill him. The Priest would even think he was having a religious experience, while Annalax took control of the town’s religious sensibilities. All Hail Her Ladyship.
But before the methanol could take effect, Ember and Zhan interrupted proceedings. They rather like the Priest, simply because he is a “good person,” and were appalled that Annalax was trying to poison him. Ergo, the plan was short-circuited.
I think this rather speaks to Annalax’s moral compass (yes, he does have one) being rather alien to modern eyes. While the rest of the party may think that the sleazey Burgermeister is worse than the nice Priest, Annalax thinks the Priest is morally much worse. For him, preaching a False Religion – with the associated afterlife implications – is far more monstrous than being a bit of an arsehole in your day-to-day life. And this Priest of the Eternal Flame, however kind he may be, is indeed preaching a False Religion. And despite this, Annalax was not even trying to kill him.
But Annalax was genuinely distraught about this. This is his Greatest Failure on behalf of Lolth. And if Her Ladyship’s favour has been withdrawn, what does this say about his likelihood of continued survival?
Session forty four. I was unfortunately not present for most of this.
NPC assistance had arrived in the form of Emissaries of the Shadow Cat. Manya our new Bard made some clothes for one of them, while Ember and an Emissary Barbarian called Bethany had an exhausting sparring match. Einarr, our Goliath Barbarian, had a friendly boxing match with one of the Emissaries, and much to the surprise of the newcomers, he actually won. Meanwhile, a snake person tried to console Annalax, suggesting that a more subtle illusion might have achieved much the same thing.
To cheer the town up, there was a night-time drinking and bonfire celebration. One of the Emissaries (actually Bethany, the female Emissary Barbarian, who apparently looks vaguely like an anime girl) came out as a lesbian to Manya, but Manya was not interested. Our party Bard is the most wholesome member of the group. Bethany actually ended up shagging Lolth’s sister instead, who made a surprise guest appearance.
As part of the general build-up to freeing the town, we used Elknel’s Silver Key (remember those?) to send the townspeople through into the Dreamland. They will be safe there, so the hope goes… though the time differential between the Waking World and the Dreamland might well leave them for months at the other end.
Back to the Annalax Index: https://phuulishfellow.wordpress.com/2021/01/07/the-adventures-of-annalax-a-compendium/