- Recovering from their heroics in the Grey Garrison, the heroes discover that one of the distraction patrols has not returned. It is the patrol that Tarric joined. Last seen heading north near Saint Clydwell’s Cathedral, the 3 head out, loud words of praise and whispered curses of concern following them out.
- Near the ruins of the cathedral, the site where Terendelev lost her life, they feel a pull of power and uncover some her scales that pulse with power. From here, they find a tunnel heading below and eventually discover a large natural cave where a Vrock oversees a small battle arena. Only a few soldiers still live, Tarric included, and they are desperately trying to keep the small demons and cultists at bay. Launching into the fray, the Vrock welcomes them but becomes annoyed when his minions start be cut down rapidly. Joining the battle, he strikes hard but is ultimately defeated. The injured soldiers are escorted back to the base.
- Word comes that Queen Galfrey and her army are due to arrive. The defenders to a concentrated push to clear the way to the gates and set up an honour guard for her. She rides through, at the lead of her impressive paladin army and begins talks with the few commanders left. Shortly after, she calls for the heroes of the city as she wished to meet them personally. Weary but with grace and presence, she welcomes them and commends the three on their strike on the Grey Garrison. Unlike many others, she knew the sacrifice was a difficult one and informs them that she approves of their decision. It saved thousands of lives and millions more after the fact. Listening to their story and taking into account the power brimming from the three, she feels that they are blessed by Iomedae and asks if they would be willing to take a more direct role in the war. She wants a small force to head into the Worldwound and retake Drezen from Aponavicius while she is busy assaulting the southern borders. She will give them a force of 100 paladins as well as some advisers to assist. She hopes a small force will draw less attention and will not automatically call back some of the bigger demonic armies. She hopes they can restore the city after it was lost when the legendary banner of Iomedae was stolen, the Sword of Valor. When mounted, it prevents demonic teleportation in an area.
- Once agreed to, she leads them outside and addresses the defenders. She commends them for their heroism and bravery in the attack on Kenabres. With the great loss of so many, including the Triumvirate of Hope, she officially calls the end of the Fourth Crusade and the beginning of the Fifth Crusade. She then knights Alaenora Thalanis, Nyissa Veil and Ralthanar, allowing them to lead armies and own land in Mendev. She promotes Captain Irabeth Tirabade and then prepares to head off for the front lines while more armies begin to arrive and reinforce the fallen city.
- After meeting their new advisers: the cleric of Sheylyn, Sosiel Vaenic, his partner and forward scout, Aron Kir and Queen Galfrey’s battlefield historian, Nurah Dendiwhar, the army heads north.
- On the first day, they reach a small farming town that was near the borders of the Worldwound. They had been attacked over the last few nights by Hala Demons and were struggling. They had also been raided by a mercenary army and told to flee to the safety of either Kenabres or the in-land towns and cities, something they ignored. That night, the town is attacked again and several Hala Demons appear right in the midst of the the three heroes, their attack very directed. However, they underestimated the paladin army and they are destroyed. In the morning, the survivors are finally convinced to flee to Kenabres. Before they go, the say that a treasured artifact was stolen from them, a crown from their druid founder. They hope it can be found and put to good use.
- Pushing into the Worldwound, the army stops a bit before lunch as three men are brought back by the scouts. They are deserters from the Crusader Armies and speak of torture and cruelty by the demons. One was even more brutalized and as he tries to explain his condition, he vomits forth wasps, worms and other swarms, the stinging insects tearing his body open. The other two men are interrogated by Nyissa and Alaenora and convinced to return to Kenabres and atone for their crimes.
- Later that same day, another crusader is found, but this one is looking for aid. His army is trapped in a box canyon by a Schir army and their back-up never arrived. Their army was made up of ex criminals and have fought valiantly in return for their freedom. They are on the other side of the river ford. Spurring the army, they arrive at the river army base, only to find the stationed army obliterated, they seemed to not have even been prepared for war. A mercenary army are currently looting the battlefield and with no time to stop, the heroes ride past. In the box canyon, the criminal army is almost exhausted but the paladins shout out Iomedae and charge in. The opening charge is devastating to the schir but soon it becomes a prolonged and deadly skirmish. Eventually the paladins win the day and attend to the few survivors left. They were betrayed by their commander, who never intended to save them. But they paid their price by being slain by another another passing through.
- Returning to the River Camp, a few mercenaries finish claiming resources. Ordered to back off by the heroes, they warn them that they don’t want a fight and allow them to leave with their spoils. As tensions rise, a powerful voice calls out from a ledge and Alaenora spins in surprise at the familiar sound. The leader of the army, the fallen elven paladin Seralian stands ready for combat but calls his men back. He is surprised by her presence but speaks little before ordering his lieutenant, the beautiful kellid barbarian, Fasha Whitemane, to prepare them men to move. He wishes the army good luck and disappears from view.
- Resting the night, the surviving army of criminals agree to head toward Kenabres and inform them that the ford had been lost. The heroes army continued the next day and as they prepare to start heading west towards Drezen, an enclosed path through the canyons are scouted and two armies are spotted waiting. An army of cultists and an army of tieflings are well embedded but through the use of trickery and magic, the cultist army is lured and ambushed, slain to man with out a single retaliatory strike. Emboldened, the paladins charge into the canyon and take the tieflings by surprise and also slay them to the last.
* On the final approach to Drezen, the road is blocked by hundreds of thousands of vescavors, tiny abysal locusts that can strip a man’s flesh in seconds. It is quickly deduced that a queen is nearby to draw so many and the heroes descend into the nearby tunnels. Making their way through the ichor and slime covered caverns, they eventually confront the Vescavor Queen and slay her. A vrock also appears and is quickly put to the sword. A tear in the world is found, a direct portal to the Abyss and without any chance of closing it, collapse the roof and cave around it. Returning to the surface, they watch as the swarms quickly dissipate.
* At camp that night, an old shrine fort is spotted above, sitting upon a higher ridge. Seeking to explore, they find the stairs up treacherous and use magic to ascend. The building is dedicated to Sarenrae and looks to be in great disrepair. Heading to the roof, Nyissa quickly discovers some guardians in the form of gargoyles who animate and swoop down to attack. Heading in, they find the place heavily desecrated. Ghouls have taken over and worship a demon lord of consumption and cannibalism. Heading through, they clear the monstrosities out and eventually face down an incubus called Exorius, who presides over the fallen shrine. His defeat only heralds a bigger herald, a nabasu demon who appears in the courtyard and charges into the building which a clap of thunder. Battle turns poorly for the heroes as hold magics and other abyssal gifts are sent forth by the creature but it is eventually brought low. With the demon and undead presence eliminated, the building is reconsecrated by Alaenora back to Sarenrae.
- The army finally arrives at Drezen, a sprawling fort city. It currently appears to be a ghost town as many of the demonic defenders have left for the front lines. The army make camp and the scouts head out to gain battlefield intelligence. During the evening, the heroes get to rest and mingle a little bit and Sosiel reveals his artistic ability, painting the camped army. Soon, a paladin is brought to the attention of the heroes as he seems to be cracking and spreading doom and gloom through the ranks. A veteran of many battles, most of which ended poorly, he seems have lost his faith. Not consumed by evil, but fallen none the less, he is taken to Irabeth to be redeemed or counseled.
- Late in the night, Aron and Anevia return. They were quite successful but while describing their findings, Aron seems to have trouble concentrating and asks Anevia to continue the meeting. Anevia reveals several armies located around the ruins that include cultists, schir, tieflings and ghouls. She also advises that several key locations are taken to make their army movements easier. A bridge, guard towers and a creepy crypt.
* In the early hours of the morning, the heroes along with Anevia and Aron assault the towers, expecting to find lone Brimorak Demons in each one. They are ambushed and a protracted battle plays out. Aron freezes in combat and becomes a mess. After the battle, Nyissa blasts him for his incompetence and he is taken back to camp by Anevia. Soon after, they attack the bridge where a tiefling sorcerer and guards hold it and great man-eating beasts are tethered to the support beams. Nyissa releases the beast and soon chaos reigns as several attack the tielfings while Ralthonar and Aleanora start sweeping the bridge clear of enemies. Barrid Isen, the sorcerer makes and appearance but is belted around by axe and magic missile and eventually downed by arrows from the paladin.
- Feeling brave and pushing their luck, they move on the haunted crypt and discover a bone filled chamber that is home to a true horror, a flesh eating berbalang, an undead creature that can enter the dreams of nearby victims and slay them in their sleep. Their victory celebration is short-lived when a mighty roar alerts them to a new danger. Tired of these swift attacks in his city, Staunton Vhane unleashes his prized pet, the mythic chimera, Soltengrebbe. Crashing through the crypt, it opens up with icy breath and terrible fangs. Supernaturally fast, it tears through the heroes, sending them scattering. Nyissa attempts to hide in another room but it crashes through, trying to crush all in it’s path. In a last desperate flurry of swings, the heroes manage to bring it down, all three terrifyingly close to death. The last breaths of the creature, they are instilled with a sensation of raw power, their mythic presence increasing from their legendary fight.
- Meanwhile, the armies successfully manage to clear the outer enemies and take control of Paradise Hill. With that, they bunker in and the heroes return for well needed rest. Upon awaking, they discover that Anevia and Nurah have not returned from scouting the citadel itself. Giving it another night, they wander the camp and eventually came across a quite ill Aron. Suspicious of his actions and movements, they discover that is under the influence of a powerful narcotic called Shadow Blood, an extremely addictive substance drawn from Shadow Demons. It can even leave the user open to possession while under the effects. He admits that he was once a user but he cleaned up, that is how he met Sosiel, he approached the church looking for help. But several nights ago, he found some in his belongings and he broke and started using again. he is thoroughly reprimanded and Sosiel is called who has equally harsh words and storms out. He is placed under army arrest for the time being.
- The next morning, the paladins assault the citadel and the armies stationed there while the three break into the fortress. Quickly they come across a battery of ballista but all the soldiers are dead. A kellid woman leans against the wall, babbling in kellid. She blames the heroes for the death of her men, they forced her hand to give them a merciful death instead of what Staunton would have given them. She attacks and delivers an immense blow to Ralthonar before they subdue her and she surrenders. She agrees to switch sides and help them slay the dwarf. She introduces herself as Jestak. She gives a basic layout of the fortress and informs them that she believes Staunton’s brother may be turned against him.
- Fighting there way through several rooms, they arrive at a grand chapel where a succubus dressed as a priestess of Iomedae is overseeing an orgy upon the alter. She is slain almost immediately by the incensed paladin and allies and the ashamed crusaders told to go join the fight outside to redeem themselves. A secret door is found but only reveals a looted treasury. But a second room is found and amongst the treasure (and mimics), a mithril suit of platemail is discovered. Another vrock is slain on the way through before a prisoner is found. A handsome man, he looks tortured but is reasonable spirits. Nyissa recognises him as a famous swashbuckler called Maranse who went missing in the Worldwound some time ago. Dispelling the enchantment from him, he retrieves his rapier and promises to lend his aid in thanks. He radiates evil but talks about how the demons tried to instill evil essences into him.
* Eventually Staunton’s brother is found, Joran Vhane. Writing madly into a book when they enter, he seems surprised and looks to the babau demons in the room to see what they do. As the first demon drops, Joran is reduced maniacal laughter from Nyissa’s spell, causing a voice to boom from an adjacent room, threatening him for betraying Deskari. The doors slam open and two fiendish minotaurs and the commander of Drezen steps through. Maranse suddenly drops his disguise and appears as a beautiful, white haired demoness and turns on the heroes. Calling herself Kiranda, she tries to charm Nyissa and after some ineffectual strikes, is cut down by the barbarian. Jestak seems to have a moment of crises as she weighs up her best chances of survival but words from Ralthonar keeps her true and she continues to fight for the heroes. Meanwhile, Staunton and Alaenora call down smites on each other and cross blades. It is soon evident that Staunton is empowered with something as well. Unfortunately, it does not assist him when he is slowed by Nyissa’s magic while the heroes are then hasted. Ralthonar continues to carve through the babaus and minotaurs and after being hexed by the elven arcanist, Staunton is then reduced to painful, paralysing laughter and is cut down by a series of dazzling strikes by the elven paladin, his head flying free from his body and his evil diminished forever.