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Faced with the potential for a trip to Pandemonium, the group decides to spend some time in investigation. They consult sages, commune with nature, contact other planes, delve into bardic lore and ask the druids for hidden knowledge.

Unfortunately, all this poking and prying into the planes reveals some information. The first bit of information is that some sort of ancient arcane dragon thingy is drinking straight from the font of souls, thus all the soulless children. The next bit of info is that they will need to break into the tomb of a long-dead god to steal something that will allow them to gain access to the soul fountain. Beyond that, they learn that the tomb is guarded by an angelic being of some sort – undoubtedly loathe to allow entry to the tomb.

The final piece of information is that the dragon thingy is not happy with being spied upon, and greatly resents folks trying to find out tings about it. This becomes clear when the group is attacked by a snake-woman-demon thing that attacks Demming, screaming all the while about his bloodline. The battle is swift and fierce. Demming is slain and the fiend attempts to stick a helmet upon his head.

This alarms Dalliance so she turns the corpse of Demming into a child’s wooden letter block. The fiend departs, in a decidedly foul temper. The group remains in a decidedly foul mood, until a strange sumo-wrestler grey frog pops out of the aether and demands to know ‘where did the bitch go?’ Dalliance gestures vaguely and says – out of this plane. The frog follows. The group is puzzled, then paranoid.

They stop to recruit another of Demming’s sect, invoking the name of the great druid to try and summon a replacement. They succeed and prepare themselves for a trip to pandemonium to fight angels and break into the tomb of gods. Good times, good times.

Deciding to investigate a lead from not too long ago, the group troops off into the badlands to investigate tales of children born with no souls.
The phenomenon is verified and Demming pushes for action, as his constituency is most affected.
The group agrees and information-gathering commences. The lead that develops points the group towards a sect of dreamers who believe answers are to be sought in the dream state.
The subsequent investigation finds a dreamhold. The group enters and is told that their inquiries into the font of souls can only be answered by the Prime Dreamer. They awaken her at their own peril.
They advance into what could be perilous peril indeed, were it not for the array of spells they bring to bear. The Dreamer is awakened.
Questions are asked and answered and it appears as though the next stop could well be Pandemonium…..
Oh nooooo!

The group ransacks the tiger-man’s lair then puzzles over the lack of options. Oh well – back down the stairs and into an unexplored room. This one is an assembly/storage area for the steel lions currently prowling around the outside of the tower. Onward through some doors and a hallway is revealed. It is guarded by two immense machetegolems.
Cue Demming and his metal repulsion spell. He pushes the golems into a corner so Dalliance can eliminate them. She then eliminates the scary glyphs on the doors, which lets Barada determine that they are quite uncomfortably warm to the touch. Fire up the scroll of fore resistance and off they go, up the stairs.
Upon reaching the top, it is clear that the end is near. A vast army of partially incorporeal figures works in a frenzy – smelting and forging and scurrying and stoking and so forth. A trio of overseers roams the crowd, exhorting the spirits to greater efforts. Dalliance slams a wall of force in front of a large metallic dragonne, then triple-bolts the overseers into a fine dust with a massive surprise attack. A second dragonne is disintegrated and the group charges for the forge.
There they find a trio of immense fire elementals engaged in the heating of a massive and clearly impressively magical blade. The elementals are being directed by another overseer of sorts, so the group does its best to disrupt the goings-on. Multiple cold-based spells are unleashed, and Nils is battered into a smoking heap, but the group rallies him and presses the attack. They manage to defeat the elementals and the overseer and then pour a lot of cold-based magical energy at the now-cooling blade. Dalliance hoses it down with the cold from her staff of power until the metal begins to emit some pinging sounds,
Fairly confident that they have at least eliminated whatever threat this would represent, the group absents themselves in rapid fashion, wind-walking out of the tower at top speed, then plane shifting back to Shadowdale. There, they relax momentarily.

Returning to the lair of the mind flayers reveals that the expected has happened. The surviving occupant has found a less hazardous space to occupy, and the loot has been looted. The group presses on, ascending a short stair to a landing and two doors. Neither is trapped, both are locked, and one is guarded by a spell-absorbing protection. One door is knocked open to reveal a dusty room, with a trap within. Demming hurls a missile from his necklace into the room and they pull the door shut.
While the fire burns, the group continues to scout the doors. The first two are barred and as the group then doubles back to the burnt room they think they hear a door creaking behind them. A quick and paranoid pause, then a peek into the hallway. Not much is seen, so they climb the stair and investigates the ashes and crushed bones that litter the floor of the fireballed room. Nothing much is found. Hmm. That is a bit of a stumper.
Anyhoo…back downstairs to the large set of double doors. As they approach, a side door bursts open and a lichified hydra attacks Ron’j!. He battles and as Nils moves to reinforce, the door bursts into flinders as a devilish cloud giant-like entity strides forth, swinging a mighty flaming morning-star. He pummels and pounds on the group members almost slaying Nils before falling victim to a polymorph spell that leaves him in the shape of a large fish, quickly running out of oxygen.
The group pauses for a second to apply healing to the downed fighter when another door opens and a 5 armed nightmare from the pits of evil appears, casually dangling a flayed human body from one hand. Although Demming downs his potion of demon protection in preparation for battle, the beast seems forrnidable, almost slaying Abe with a single word. Dalliance opts for a more direct approach and disintegrates the nightmare. It is definitely time to go.
They rope trick the ‘night’ away and return with a fresh spell complement in 10 hours time. The fortress now sports a metallic lion pack doing laps around the perimeter and a duo of machete golems at the front door.
Into the shape of the wind and the group walks past all the guards, rapidly ascends the stairs and confronts the spell-absorbing door. Taking advantage of the general clamor that permeates the iron fortress, they begin to batter down the door with brute strength, gauntlets of rusting and an acid-weeping magical hammer. After about a minute, a hole is opened and Ron’j! sticks his arm through to unbar the door. He receives a large dose of electricity for his troubles. As Nils drags him away from the door – muttering about undetected traps – the real cause for alarm becomes evident. A rakasha! OSR! No…just a minute. Dalliance projects her image into the room, then slams a Wall of Force across the opening, then proceeds to batter the creature to death with a spell of clenched fist. The group rejoices, then presses on…

After defeating the door guards the group presses on down a hallway – Detecting Traps and Thoughts. No traps, but some thoughts are picked up on the radar and the group bursts into a room.
There they see a golem surrounded by a shimmering soaplike bubble. Oh, and a heavily tattooed ogre. Ron’j! charges and attacks and meets with a repulsion sphere that bounces him back to the party. Turns out that is a spellcasting ogre. Hmm.

The golem ogre duo is joined by a pair of mind flayers, and this alarms Dalliance greatly. She casts phantasmal killer and slays the ogre. The group suffers a Psionic Blast attack that panics Nils and Ron’j!, causing them to depart the scene at high speed. Hmm. This is looking grim. Right. OSR!

They flee down the hallway and Dalliance uses her Staff of Power to erect a wall of force, Then she casts Project image into the bubble containing the golem. From there an wildly arcing chain lightning finishes off the golem and one brain sucker. The remaining flayer departs at top speed and the group does the same, albeit in opposite directions.

They re-enter the lair after about 3/4 of an hour and begin to explore again – moving swiftly towards the mind flayer lair, though they fear the last occupant will have plundered any loot…

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