The group continues going down the stairs, lanterns lighting up on the side, always 100 feet ahead of them and the same behind. Cautious they keep to their fine formation, they eventually are more than three thousand feet in to the tunnels, far farther then they were expecting to go, when they reach a dark point, nothing to be seen. They cautiously halt, unsure of their next steps. Maza uses her spells to see a cloak figure aiming a bow towards them hidden in the darkness. The group calls out to the stranger who replies in the jackalla tongue, warning them to stay away, this is not their bounty. Arlel knows jackalla, a lawful guardian race often dedicated to city crypts; she understands this is not their enemy, nor is this, their quest, she tells everyone they have gone the wrong way. Not wanting to face a lawful figure who should be an ally, they head back, and it takes them just a few moments to return to the stairs, realizing there was a magical binding in the tunnels.
As they emerge out of the stairwell, they focus on the the Evil Pyramid entrance, Hervandos is able to avoid the traps by remaining perfectly calm. He fails, utterly, in opening the locks, so the halfling rogue comes over. But she fails her saving throw on the poison, she vomits, turns green and falls down, convulsing in pain. She is in tremendous pain but so disoriented, she is unable to do much more than shiver. The ranger and psion drag her far enough away, as the ranger heals her Tenderfoot sister, giving her another chance and the rogue passes her check, and is given help from the ranger once again.
The entire group hesitates: the entryway of the good aligned pyramid causes other problems, and as much as they dislike having to face the poison, that seems like a lesser problem then the induced ecstacy and loss of complete control. They need to find a way around, to go deeper into the evil pyramid where they believe their sarcophagus should be.
The soldiers herald something coming through the doors, as they turn to face a dozen or more of sand mephits, small rocky creatures with multiple sharp fangs, claws and bony appendages. The paladin and cleric face them front face, as the psion attempts to put up an energy wall. The ranger and rogue squirm around looking for a spot to strike. The creatures surround the cleric, cutting and clawing her, but not doing serious damage, at least not yet. They see at least another eight approaching. Finally the psion launches the energy wall, creating the barrier they need for defense. The others knock down the only two still inside the wall. The psion closes the large front doors and the soldiers seal them up with spikes.
In catching their breath, the group is left with what to do once again.
One of the lesser soldiers, wonders how they got through other traps, which gets the group thinking about what they could be missing. The rogue suddenly realizes in their haste to explore the passageways SHE didn’t search around, and when she does she eventually finds a false panel…opens it up, containing two levers, pulling them closes the obvious traps on the two other entranceways, it leaves the Pyramid of Darkness open and a heavy metal gate blocking entry to the Pyramid of Light. Now they are refocused again.
Going down the stairs they head back into another passageway, this one is wider than the one far below, none of the walls are decorated, or having hieroglyphics as they would have expected in a place like this. The bard tells the group the place is perfectly acoustic, sounds travel, far better than one would expect. Again, just as before, the lanterns are synchronized, coming on one after the other. Soon they start to hear a painful moaning, that reveals an inhuman voice in incredible torment, they see a hole in the side of the wall.
Looking in, they see a sight none ever expected to see, a chained Efreet, in horrible physical shape; the paladin detects an other-world evil. Everyone is a bit in awe, these creatures of pure fire were thought not able to come to the prime world of nyssa. No begging or screaming..it speaks in its own tongue, asking to be freed, though only the Phaetox understands it, as Galdahad shares the language of flame with it. When its polite requests fails to convince them, it returns to its riotous cacophony, begging to be let out.
As they are about to walk off, when another being, covered in chains come out to tempt the paladin into battle. The bard tells the group this is an Kyton, an evil race not devils but similar. they often work for mortal creatures, torturing is often their primary task. It’s evil tempting words crush the paladin, promising an epic battle. But no, their focus is too strong, the paladin, who shows composure and decides it better to leave, leaving the jailer in his cell with the prisoner. As they continue down, the hole in the wall is gone or at least no longer visible.
They continue down, and see the crossway turns, one direction turns into a short passageway to the right, a heavily armoured Ox Demon guarding a very elaborate door. While horribly named, they have run into these paragons of lawful order, unwilling to deviate from orders, certainly not something they have an active dislike of. In the other, a set of stairs heading down on a sharp angle.
Having no other way, they head down the passageway, when they see a small red flash dart across the passageway; Arlel summons a celestial blast, scorching an unnatural red rat that had fled from them but was still seeking to watch. Moments later they hear from a bellowing from below the stones, something in anger and mourning loss. Galdahad calls out to comfort it, but the red liquid beast roars out even louder, they see a long red snake-like entity, hungry but fearful. Not something that would strike out with treachery but of hunger, it seethes with anger, but goes back into the stone.
They look at each other and once more head down the stairs…