Max is approached by his order, and asked to retrieve the Black Book of Tharizdun. A vision has come to one of the priests, and they have a basic idea of the location. Hearing of the quest, Orrin asks the party to also retrieve some money owed from a Businessman in Varisia. Orrin pays their way and sends them out.
It takes around 3 weeks to arrive by ship. The group decided to hold off on getting the money back, and headed into the wilds to find the hidden temple. Entering into a vale, they find a band of Halflings who speak of goblin raids and offer to send three members of their tribe to aid the party in ending these attacks.
The party uses a map the halfings have of the area to explore. They quickly surprise a Lamia and her Lucretous (spelling) and kill them. They manage to avoid a large band of orcs, and by providence find the ancient temple.
The temple itself is the lair of an exceptionally bright giant, who has organized the goblins and gnolls as well as some trolls and ogres to defend his home. When the party entered into the top of the temple, all hell broke loose. storm cloud In a running battle, the party ended up killing most of the defenders in the upper temple. After the slaughter, the party barricaded themselves in the upper chamber in order to rest and recover, and then explored the temple.
After exploring the temple, they killed the coffer corpse of the last high priest, and freed the guardian demon in the old crypt. They obtained a lot of loot, and items. Along the way, they found a missing Halfling, a dwarf fighter, and a human wizard, Alistair Leeds, in the cells in the temple. They managed to nurse them back to health. The dwarf headed off on his own, when he discovered the party did not trust him (with good reason). The Halfling and human were nursed back to health by the Halflings while the party cleared the temple.
Then the party, having obtained instructions on how to enter the Black Cyst, descended into the unnatural darkness and cold to confront the secrets hidden there . The Black Cyst is a series of odd chambers, traps and creatures. Dealing with the final guardians, the group obtained the Black Book, as well as the hidden treasure of the priests of evil god. They also encountered the trapped form of Tharizdun, a sitting black shape.
After returning to the light, the group bade farewell to the halflings. Alistair came with the party, choosing to follow the bold Kaneth Stearan. They easily collected their debt and headed to Absolom as it was the next ship out. There they spent much of their treasure, arming themselves against future threats.
Upon return to Almas, however, they were told Orrin was arrested for murder and conspiracy against the Lumber Guild. Our group of heroes is lucky not to be taken into custody themselves.