Legends of Hyrule

Session 40 Summary
Fire and Ice

Once more our party awoke on the outside of the Spirit Temple, perched safely upon the arm of the large statue that stood on the face of the stone mountain that the temple inhabited. Taking a short period of time to refresh themselves and replenish their empty stomachs, they quickly discussed amongst one-another the strategy headed into the remainder of the temple, and the lair of the witches Koume and Kotake. They took with them some words of wisdom from Kaepora Gaebora, the large owl whom they had met during the previous day, in noting that the twin witches hardly ever separated, and that perhaps making an attempt to try and separate them would serve as an effective means of crippling their powers.

Heading back through the chamber in which the previous night’s Iron Knuckle fight had occured, and back into the room containing the Armos puzzle, the party move through an alternate and newly-opened passage and into another chamber containing a variety of pitfalls and narrow walkways surrounding them. In this new room, they were confronted by three levitating Anubis creatures who promptly began mimicking the movements of three of the party members, while also firing flame spells at them at various instances. Navigating the room’s treacherous walkways and activating a series of flame circles, the party led the Anubis’ around the room until they had each been caught up in the activated flames, burning them away into ashes.

Moving up another flight of stairs, the party came into a series of hallways formulating in a squared shape, featuring a series of mirrors and a nearby beam of natural light. Sensing some familiarity, Albus Severus Potter began redirecting the light beam while Odaviing followed the passages ahead, redirecting each mirror to face the one after. Before long he had reached the final room, at the end of which the hallway connected back to the first room, albeit blocked by a series of steel bars. As Oda began redirecting the final mirror, two Dinolfos’ began to crawl their way out of a nearby gap in the ceiling and set upon both Oda and Albus, prompting the remainder of the party to rush around the corridor in an attempt to support them. Albus managed to escape further injury by magically shifting himself between the nearby steel bars, while Oda used what magic he had at his disposal to fend off the Diolfos’ before the remainder of the party arrived to slay the beasts.

Once the mirrors had been properly aligned, the stream of light shone back into the room that they first entered into, reflecting onto the face of a sun that has been hung from a nearby wall. Beneath the sun, on a floor space roughly ten feet below the surface on which the party currently stood, an opening was created as the floor began to descend into a large chamber below, suspended by four mechanical chain links. Before descending down, the party thought it best to take an hour or so to recover, with some party members taking the time to sleep off any fatigue that they had been encumbered with. During this downtime, Leiutentant Mae Lin experienced some concerning dreams, in which she vividly walked through a lengthy hallway inside the Spirit Temple, adorned with various hieroglyphs of the Gerudo people in worship of a tall female humanoid with differing skin tones on either side of her body. She walked in line with other women of varying humanoid races, until all around her turned to darkness.

As the party woke, with Mae choosing not to impart the nature of her dreams to the rest of the group, they descended down the lowered platform, finding themselves suspended high above a large chamber, with the meditating female colossus statue facing them directly. Taking the chance to closely inspect the structure, it became clear to several of them that the facial area of the statue appeared to be incredibly brittle, prompting Albus and Oda to each cast a Thunderwave spell at it, shattering the face and revealing a passage inside, leading to a large wooden door. Once through the door, they began to walk down a lengthy narrow passage, identical to the one that Mae walked down in her dream only hours before; a fact that she quietly noted at this time. Taking some time to study the Gerudo dialect that accompanied the images, which roughly translated to phrases such as “Twinrova guide us”, several members of the party began to liken the imagery to the description of Hylian women being marched through the desert by the Gerudo as provided by Kaepora. Sensing the severity of the situation, they hurried forward another hundred feet, coming upon yet another wooden door.

Peering inside, the party stared down a flight of stairs into a lengthy, well-kept chamber that featured a gallery of humanoid statues overseeing what seemed somewhat like an audience chamber, at the end of which stood an armoured humanoid bearing the identical likeness of an Iron Knuckle. Hovering almost directly above the armoured being upon wooden broomsticks were the twin witches, who cackled as they briefly spoke to one-another about their new “servant”, occasionally directing their speech somewhat mockingly towards the Iron Knuckle. Not wanting to waste a second further, Rocky barged into the room, shouting towards the witches to gather their attention. As the party followed in, they began an exchange with the witches that saw both sides mock one-another somewhat, with the twins promising to meet with vengeance. To further torment, the pair directed the party’s attention to the statue gallery up above, where two small Zora children stood encased in stone with fearful expressions upon their faces, with them being recognised by Talir and Albus as Talir’s daughter Areh and Princess Ruto, daughter of King Zora.

Talir and Albus immediately stood in shock and fury, preparing to charge towards the witches. Before any other actions could be taken, Koume and Kotake set forth their “minion” against the party, an Iron Knuckle that brandished two Scimitars, before disappearing through dimensional portals. The party leapt into action against the Iron Knuckle, employing previous strategies used against the heavily-armoured foes during past encounters within the temple. Despite a flurry of scimitar swings made towards them, the party found themselves quickly with the upper hand in the fray, with Rocky immediately chipping away at the being’s armoured exterior. As crucial fragments of metal fell away from the Knuckle, a slender, dark-skinned human form could be partially seen within, prompting all combatants to immediately hold back their attacks once it had dropped to the floor unconscious.

Standing before the fallen foe, the party hastened to remove its armour, uncovering the heavily wounded body of their former Gerudo companion Namoori. After taking a few minutes to recover, Namoori explained that the witches had taken her captive after she’d been instructed to head to the Spirit Temple prior to the party concluding their ventures in the Gerudo Trials. Since the witches had failed to brainwash her, which subsequently would have permanently turned her into an Iron Knuckle, she agreed to help them in their confrontation against them.

Talir wasted little time in the moments after the Iron Knuckle battle, rushing up towards the gallery of statues to locate his long lost daughter, waiting as both Albus and Oda followed to assist in removing the curse that kept young Areh in her petrified state. Once the spell had been lifted, Talir was shocked to find no sign of life in his daughter, prompting him to begin frantically resuscitating her. After several minutes of tension, during which the rest of the party stood by in nervous anticipation, Areh drew a deep and desparate breath, turning her suddenly widened eyes towards her father and embracing him in a tight hug. As the pair shared a moment of reconciliation, Albus and Oda moved to the statue of Princess Ruto, and began lifting the petrification curse that held her in place. The curse was lifted, and Ruto was also released into a state where she appeared lifeless. Albus began desparately to resuscitate her, spending several minutes attempting to breathe life into her form, eventually conceding that she had been lost for good.

Within moments, Koume and Kotake reappeared aboard their wooden brooms overhead, taunting the party at the loss of Princess Ruto. To bargain, they offered them a choice of two captives to take with them should they agree to leave the temple: either Areh, or another female, whom they brought through the temple and revealed to be Albus’ long-lost sister, Serenity Potter. Choosing not to play by the witches’ devious game, Albus cast a fireball at Kotake, infuriating the pair, who then issued a challenge for the party to face them in their most sacred chamber and then teleported away. The party agreed for Leoni Loyahl, Serenity and Namoori to take Areh and the lifeless body of Ruto out of the temple, while the rest of them ventured further in to confront the witches and dispose of them for good.

Heading through the next door, the party stepped onto a slightly-raised platform in the center of a large squared chamber, which quickly ascended 60 feet high once each of them stood upon it. The voices of the witches rang out from unseen places, foretelling their desires to "sacrifice them to King Ganondorf. Koume emerged from a nearby stone pillar, shouting “With my flame, I will burn them to the bone!”, as her hair burst into flames and her hands crackled with fiery magic; simultaneously, Kotake emerged from a pillar on the opposite side of the chamber, shouting “With my frost, I will freeze them to their souls!”, as her hair froze solid and emitted wisps of frost, much like the magical energy forming in her hands.

Almost at once, the two witches set upon the party from above with an array of devastating magical spells. Much of Koume’s spellcasting sought to batter and blast the party with red-hot fire magic, with Kotake spending more time bolstering the powers of her fiery twin sister. Much of the party’s spellcasters reacted quickly, with Albus, Mae and Oda returning fire with spells of their own, Rocky and Talir struggling more so to find ways of attacking the airborne witches. After spending several minutes, scattering attacks amongst both of the witches, each of the party members slowly began to concentrate their efforts on a single target; the ice witch Kotake. The process was slow, but the effects of their concentration gradually began to show. Within several minutes, the witch ceases to attack with her icy magic, crashing from her broom upon a nearby stone pillar, lying cold and – potentially – deceased.

As Koume screamed in agony at the loss of her twin, she hastily flew over to Kotake’s body. Within moments, the ice witch’s body disappeared, replaced by a single floating white orb. Almost in turn, Koume’s body also disappeared, with a red orb hovering in its place. The two orbs then began slowly circling around a small space of air, the space between them slowly growing smaller and smaller. Within moments the orbs had merged together, causing a burst of blinding light to emerge from that small space. As the light began to dim, a tall, humanoid form floated in its place, one that visibly presented two different skin tones either side of her body; one light, and one dark. From the humanoid’s two braids of hair, a burning flame and chilling ice poured down from atop her head. As she grinned and winked towards the shocked onlooking party members, the Gerudo Goddess Twinrova playfully remarked “Now, let the real battle begin!”.

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Session 39 Summary
A Rescue Mission

After a night spent resting upon the arm of the great statue standing outside at the forefront of the Spirit Temple, during which Albus Severus Potter bided his time spent out of sleep by throwing stones down towards Azir Salem, the party awoke and began some initial discussions with the newly-rescued Leoni Loyahl regarding his state of mind and what he could recall of his capture and fellow soldiers, learning that those of the royal guard who were not killed outright were instead imprisoned within the castle, while he alone was forced to march through the Gerudo Desert. At the near end of this conversation, the sound of beating wings could be heard somewhere overhead, the source of which could not be seen over the towering stone mountain. Thinking to inspect the source of the noise, Odaviing transforms into a small falcon and soars above the mountain, finding a gigantic owl perched on the mountaintop, staring at him with wide eyes. Terrified, Oda flew her way back down to the party, quickly changing back into Dragonborn form and relaying what he had seen to everyone else. Within moments, the owl flew its way down towards them, taking them further by surprise by calling out in the common tongue for them not to be afraid.

The owl perched himself nearby, then introduced himself as Kaepora Gaebora, a wise old bird who had long lived in and watched over Hyrule. He explained that he has feared the rise of Ganondorf for months now, and has seen much of the land become disturbed since his climb to power. Among the changes to the land, Kaepora had witnessed a collection of many different humanoid creatures being marched by the Gerudo across the desert, mostly seemingly female, including two blue humanoids most recently – a note that immediately strikes a cord with Albus and Talir. Immediately, the pair felt a rush of memories going through their heads, revolving around the recently-disappeared Princess Ruto and Talir’s daughter Areh, who was kidnapped long ago.

With this new information in hand, it became abundantly clear to the party that the lives of the lives of the innocent women, their Gerudo ally Namoori, as well as the potential fate of Ruto and Areh were all at stake, and that they needed to negate whatever plans the temple’s witches, Koume and Kotake, had formulated for them. With some assistance from Kaepora, the party descended back down to the ground in front of the temple, prompting Azir to rush up to them and ask if they’d yet found the “silver treasure” from the temple, to which Albus lied that they hadn’t. Kaepora promised to wait outside the temple for them, and so the party ventured back inside the temple.

Once back inside, Rocky equipped the Silver Gauntlets and found herself with even greater strength than she had previously possessed, and subsequently had no problem moving the large stone block that obstructed the path ahead, though not before finding some humour in seeing several other party members make an attempt at doing so. They quickly headed through the door at the end of the freshly-opened passage, re-entering the large chamber with the meditating female colossus statue. Here, they took some time to properly analyse their surroundings, with some of the party noting that the statue itself looked to become more and more brittle further up, though to what extent this was the case was disguised by the room’s general darkened state.

In the following chambers, the party met a small number of Anubis creatures and were forced to navigate their way around more pitfalls and devastating fire spells so as to lead them into particular fire traps; they then entered a room with five Armos statues surrounding a floor switch, four of which were animated and quickly destroyed by a well-placed fire spell. Once the animated statues were destroyed, the fifth statue was moved into the floor switch, releasing the bars that had been covering a nearby door, enabling them to head through.

In an instance of déjà vu, the party entered yet another stone hallways with a red carpet drawn down the center, surrounded by stone columns on either side, and resting before the feet of a large, heavily armoured humanoid with a large steel greataxe resting in its lap. As the being stood from its rocky throne, it cried out with an otherworldly roar as the party came to realise that they were facing down a true Iron Knuckle. In a quick moment of response, Oda used his magic to hasten Rocky the Rockette’s movements, enabling the Goron barbarian to charge at the menacing opponent before her. As she did so, Rocky found herself on the receiving end of several devastating greataxe swings, prompting her to retreat back slightly and immediately consume a healing potion.

To aid their large ally, both Talir and Leoni (after he had spent a moment of two shaking away the sense of fear at seeing the creature that he had once been forced to become) charged directly at the Iron Knuckle and began to lay their own blows into its armoured hide. Both Oda and Leiutentant Mae Lin kept their distances, utilising what magic they could wear it down from afar. Oda, in particular, found the use of his lightning magic to be particularly effective against the metallic opponent, dealing a significant amount of damage during the fray. Taking care to avoid as much of the Iron Knuckle’s swings as possible, even after it was forced to shed most of its armour so as to quicken its pace, the party managed to overcome the tainted warrior, watching as its shadowy figure melted away into nothingness, leaving only the shell of its armour and its greataxe behind; a powerful weapon that Rocky promptly picked up and took for her own use.

Venturing through the door behind the Iron Knuckle’s throne, the party emerged outside of the temple onto the opposite arm of the statue from the previous one that they’d discovered the Silver Gauntlets upon. On this arm, they found yet another chest with a shimmering golden sword inside, the Sun Blade, which Mae picked up and equipped by her side. Feeling weary from the previous battle, the party agreed to rest before venturing back inside the temple, allowing themselves time to recover in preparation for a confrontation with the vile witches.

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Session 38 Summary
Into the Spirit Temple

Thinking it unwise to rush their way directly back into the Spirit Temple without a good night’s sleep and a constructed plan, our party made camp under the stars, resting by a nearby pool of water. As has been customary, several party members took turns keeping watch, mostly to ensure that they would not be surprised by the witches or any other desert-dwelling creatures. During the night, Odaviing, Leiutentant Mae Lin and Albus Severus Potter each felt a strange magical alluring sensation emitting from the temple, with the party’s female members more easily having their attentions drawn towards the temple than anyone else.

The night eventually passed, and our party gathered their belongings in preparation for their venture into the Spirit Temple; a rescue mission that they each agreed was a top priority. Before entering, they came upon a wandering man dressed in garbs that suggested he was a foreign traveler. Through a mild nervous stutter, the man introduced himself as Azir Salem, a treasure hunter from a land far west of the Gerudo Desert who had come to the Spirit Temple in search of a “mythical silver treasure” that was said to lie in wait within the temple; a treasure that would apparently “make the wearer very strong”. Azir pleaded for the party to find the treasure on his behalf during their venture into the temple, in exchange for a pair of magical boots that he currently possessed that he said would “make the wearer move much faster”. As a down-payment, Azir even agreed to gift the party a magic Boomerang, which they accepted, agreeing to do what they could to find the silver treasure.

Once inside, the party agreed that venturing through the crawlspace passage would be an ideal starting point, as it appeared that they possessed no current means of moving the large stone block that prevented them from venturing through the opposite passage. Facing the dilemma of fitting a large Goron through a small space, Albus used his magic to shrink Rocky the Rockette down to a significantly smaller size, enabling her to follow the rest of the party through to a deeper part of the temple. They entered into a small circular chamber with two large doors, one seemingly unlocked and the other barred with a silver lock and chains. It also contained several piles of dried bones with ancient swords, shields and bows surrounding them, and a single spike trap rotating around a small red carpeted mat depicting the image of a yellow sun on its face. Whilst moving towards the accessible door, the bones suddenly began to reconnect, forming the humanoid figures of skeletal warriors; creatures known as Stalfos. The battle against these undead creatures was initially a bit of a scare, with the creatures moving fast and striking with precise blows, however these old piles of bones eventually proved to be of no match for our battle-tested adventurers.

After working their way through a brief puzzle room, the party entered into a small chamber with various pitfalls and narrow walkways around them, containing a single floating sarcophagus-like creature known as an Anubis. The creature immediately mimicked Albus’ movements, as he was the first person to enter the room. Finding to means of destroying the creature on their own, and no way to breach the sealed door out of the room, they soon located a pressure switch on a nearby platform that would activate a circle of fire on the floor on the opposite side of the room. Albus then cautiously made his way over to the floor switch, taking care to try and avoid the fiery spells that the Anubis cast in his direction (though other party members weren’t quite as lucky), so that the creature would begin hovering within the ring of fire, promptly causing it to burn up and disintegrate.

In the following room, the party began to scale a wall with dried-out vines and weeds up to a small chamber, appearing to contain a small Lizalfos nesting ground. The creatures were dispatched with relative ease, and now the party was left to ponder over a light puzzle that was set before them, with its solution necessary to open the next door. During this momentary downtime, Albus investigated around the Lizalfos nest and discovered a strange wooden staff with the head of a serpent carved into its top. Taking the staff for himself, he began to hear whispers into his mind from an unseen source, informing him that he now held in his hands the Staff of Khazash, and that he need only whisper the staff’s name to summon the creature of the staff to aid him in any fight.

Heading out of the room, the party entered into a significantly large chamber that appeared ascend up several hundred feet, tall enough to contain a large statue of a female seated in a meditative stance. An investigation of the room revealed some interesting insights into Gerudo history, with various depictions of Gerudo adaptations to living in such arid environments as the Gerudo Desert, along with a small few depictions of religious worship to various different beings, seeming to take place over different period in history. A staircase leading up from the door through which they entered the chamber carried them to a new door, currently barred with no clear means of gaining entry. Thinking outside of the box, Mae, Albus and Talir ventured back to the first door, in front of which they found a floor mat with the triforce symbol stitched into it, and brought the mat to the sealed door upstairs. Taking inspiration from the means by which his people typically gain entry into Zora’s Domain, Talir whistled the melody known commonly as Zelda’s Lullaby while standing in front of the mat, which immediately triggered the metal bars on the door to slide open, enabling them to exit the chamber.

In a room that immediately triggered some serious post-traumatic stress with Mae and Talir, the party entered a hallway-like room with a long red carpet drawn down the center, with parallel stone columns lining either side. At the end of the hallway, an armoured humanoid sat wielding a large greataxe upon a stone throne, tilting its head slightly upward to face them. Within mere moments, the armoured being had stood up and began charging at them, prompting Oda to react quickly by casting a spell of haste on Rocky, enabling her to charge at their foe in return. As Rocky engaged the being, which appeared to be an Iron Knuckle, with her Megaton Hammer, the rest of the party immediately took up various positions to support their ally with ranged spells or close-combat attacks. The Iron Knuckle was quickly overwhelmed, and slumped to the floor in defeat, not before wincing loudly in pain with a sound that sounding more masculine and human than anyone had expected. Closely inspecting the individual within the armour, several of the party was shocked to discover that it was in fact an old acquiantance of theirs, and the former Hylian Guard Captain, Leoni Loyahl.

As Talir used what healing magic he could muster to recover the wounds that Leoni had sustained during the battle, the captain recovered consciousness and awoke as his former self, explaining to the group that he had been captured within Hyrule Castle and led through the desert by the Gerudo for several days, all the while being tormented and labelled as a “fitting servant”. Leading their newly-rescued, albeit wounded ally through the door behind the stone throne, the party emerged onto a makeshift platform outside of the Spirit Temple, as the then found themselves standing upon one of the stone arms of the large statue that stood facing out from the front of the temple’s entrance. Within the palm of the statue’s hand sat a wooden chest, inside of which rested a pair of Silver Gauntlets. They each agreed that it was a fitting place to take their rest, knowing that the remainder of their journey through the temple was bound to be even more treacherous than what they had already encountered.

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Session 37 Summary
Across an Ocean of Death

As our adventurers escaped their respective trials, they were slowly led by an armed escort back to the forefront of the Gerudo’s Fortress. They were soon approached once more by Nabooru, who glared at them with contempt, and yet spared them any further grief by permitting them to venture forth into the Gerudo Desert in search of the sacred temple to which Namoori had already supposedly ventured out to. Wasting little time, the party gathered their belongings and set forth into the desert, recounting the tales of their triumphs over the Gerudo Trials to one-another, following a pair of humanoid tracks in the hope of following Namoori’s path.

Almost a day of journeying passed, and the wasteland of sands and dust appeared to go on for an eternity, with little to no features of interest, save for a large hill upon which several large stones sat, and which the tracks that they presently were following appeared to climb over. As they reached the hilltop, unidentifiable shiny objects could be seen gleaming in various spots, which captivated the eyes of several curious party members. Ultimately, these proved to be devious traps by a local nest of Like Likes, and so the party immediately sought to fight back the large carnivorous creatures, with Albus Severus Potter and Odaviing being unfortunate enough to have been swallowed whole at certain points within the fray. Resilient as ever, the party managed to slay the creatures and acquire what shiny loot they could recover from the corpses before venturing back out towards the western horizon, keeping a sharp eye out for what tracks they could still find.

After several more hours of journeying, with the harsh desert sun almost having been completely lost to the horizon, they came upon a stone structure embedded within the stands, rising to about 40 feet high and being completely cylindrical. Upon closer inspection, they were able to scale the structure via an outer ramp, and venture inside what now appeared to be a memorial shrine of sorts. Within the shrine they came upon an assortment of statues, depicting a variety of humanoid figures in differing poses. As certain party members, Albus and Talir in particular, studied the lifelike statues in greater detail, even suspecting that some of them may have been real individuals encased in stone, others poured over The Scrolls of the Sacred Realm, taking note from the Gerudo Scroll at how it mentioned that finding what it described could be achieved by following “one from beyond the grave”. They also took some time to look over one particular statue in greater detail, as it appeared to depict a woman wielding a scepter in each hand, with the left side of her body showing a much darker skin tone than the right side.

The moon began its climb over the desert landscape, and the party took the opportunity to recover from the day’s journey. Hours past without an occurrence or event, up until a disturbing chill was felt through the air, and the presence of an undead being was detected by the party’s arcane specialists. A ghostly voice spoke out from a nearby statue, asking from the group what it is that they sought. Albus noted to the being that they sought knowledge of what the Gerudo Scroll described, and passage to the place where Namoori could be found, prompting a Poe to emerge from the statue and request that they follow it.

The journey forward wasn’t simple, and tracking the Poe proved to be far more difficult that what it seemed, as much of the party’s vision was blurred by the rapidly-moving winds that carried large amounts of sand through the air around them. With the assistance of some timely magic spells, they each managed to stay within a reasonable distance of the Poe, and before long found themselves emerging from the mild sandstorm into a far more peaceful desert oasis, ripe with small beds of water and a few tall coconut trees. As the Poe departed and their visions grew clearer, the stood in awe of the mountainous stone structure ahead of them, as the feminine stone statue that marked the entrance to the Spirit Temple stood before them, almost greeting them.

Thinking it best to check the immediate chamber inside the temple, the party explored within the temple entrance, noting that it immediately steered their course into two separate directions; either through a passage that would require moving through a crawlspace, or through a passage that presently was sealed shut by a large stone block. Before having the chance to discuss their options further, the scream of a woman echoed out from the front of the temple, and so they rushed forth to find the scream’s source. Upon exiting, they each watched in horror as Namoori struggled to keep herself from being sucked through a dark magical portal in the ground roughly 60 feet away, as two crooked humanoid figures hovered overhead on wooden brooms. Taking a brief opportunity to shout “RUN!”, Namoori was sucked down into the portal, and the twin witches, Koume and Kotake, steered their brooms back into an entrance into the temple much higher up, leaving the party to ponder their next course of action.

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Session 36 Summary
The Gerudo Trials (Part 2)

Test of Heart
Licking their wounds from the previous Dinolfos encounter, Talir and Leiutentant Mae Lin ventured into the trial’s final room; a wide hallway lined with stone pillars and a single red carpet drawn between the entrance and a stone throne, upon which sat a humanoid figure adorned in charcoal black steel armour. The figure, a mighty Darknut, drew the greatsword that rested by its side and began to storm its way towards the pair of adventurers that had dared to enter its abode.

Both Talir and Mae immediately found themselves to be at an immediate strength disadvantage against the new foe, even despite outnumbering it. The Darknut attacked with a ferocity never before seen, even by someone with as much of a military background as Mae possessed. After sustaining several heavy blows each, the pair enacted a strategy in an attempt to overcome the fearsome, albeit slow moving opponent. As one of them took the attention of the humanoid creature away from the other, magical projectiles were used to gradually wear it down. After a short time, the Darknut collapsed under the weight of the damage its armour had sustained, as it shed down to a lighter chainmail armour while also disposing of its greatsword in favour of an estoc.

The Darknut now moved at a terrifying speed, all whilst seemingly maintaining the same ferocity and strength with which it had previously engaged Talir and Mae. Talir opted to take the brunt of the damage, keeping the quick-moving assailant at bay while Mae utilised a selection of magical attacks from afar. This strategy, while effective in wearing the Darknut further down, did also cost Talir several healing potions, which he was forced to consume in desperate efforts to keep himself in the fray. Unfortunately this plan didn’t sustain itself for long, and Talir was knocked unconscious following a flurry of precise estoc strikes. Mae then drew her blade and stepped back into direct combat, engaging with the Darknut and finding herself on the receiving end of more devastating attacks. With little margin for error, she managed to overcome the Darknut’s defenses and strike a crucial blow to its armoured torso, bleeding it out and ending its assault.

Taking a few moments to recover and scrounge up what valuables they could find, Talir and Mae exited through a newly-opened door, taking their time to ascend a tall stairway and depart the trial successfully.

Test of Soul
Entering into the room containing the assortment of mirrors and magical light, Albus Severus Potter and Odaviing began to action their strategy in redirecting the light while simultaneously adjusting each of the room’s mirrors. As Albus held his newly-acquired Mirror Shield within the downpour of magical light, it reflected towards the nearest mirror, which Oda began to move to reflect towards the next nearest mirror. Oda then worked down the sequence of mirrors until, at last, they reached the end of the corridor of mirrors, at which the constructed face of a sun peered out from the far wall. Once the light was shun on to the sun face, the puzzle was solved, and the room’s clue hinted that the chest that held the symbol matching that of the current room contained “an essential tool in unlocking salvation”.

Before heading back to check on the chests, Albus and Oda pushed on as far as they could go, solving more puzzles and noting more chests as those that they should not open. Entering the twelfth room of the trial, the pair were fired upon by stone dragon statues that emitted blasts of flame. Following the puzzle’s requirements, while simultaneously sparing themselves any more burns, the pair used a combination of spells to extinguish and seal away the flames coming from the statues, and were granted another clue in the process. The room’s hint noted that its corresponding chest held the true value of a king’s power, and that they could take a look if they were “curious enough to inquire”. Taking a few moments to consider the situation before them, Albus and Oda noted that a nearby door that lead into a new area that they had as of yet unexplored was sealed behind two key locks, one coloured red and one blue.

His curiosity getting the better of him, Albus insisted that he and Oda head back into the first room to gain access to the chests that supposedly held tools to help them escape, as well as open the chest that held the true value of a king’s power. Though they managed to acquire a red and blue key from two of the chests, Albus spent the opening of a fourth chest to uncover a mere pile of stones, one of which he pocketed just in case it proved useful in some way. Finding little other option than to head back further into the trial and unlock the final door, they trudged their way back through several rooms and utilised the red and blue keys to make their way into the trial’s thirteenth room; a numerical factor that neither of the pair had considered at any stage up until now.

Once inside the room, Albus and Oda stood before a large stone pyramid, at the top of which stood another chest. Before reaching the chest, a portal opened directly above it, from which entered a floating robed entity wielding a staff burning with strong magical energy. Feeling strong magical energies pulse with greater intensity throughout the room, it became immediately clear to both Albus and Oda that this creature, a Wizzrobe, had been the source that had been feeding them stronger magical abilities.

Using the stronger magic to their advantage, Albus and Oda engaged in a furious magical battle with the creature, quickly ascending the pyramid so as to not give up the high ground to their opponent. In a moment of panic and mayhem, the Wizzrobe summoned a relatively weak Darknut to aid in the fray, though the armoured creature was quickly disintegrated by a powerful fire spell. Despite the Wizzrobe attempting to use teleportation magic to its advantage, it was soon dispatched and destroyed, leaving nothing but its mundane cloak behind. The magical creature’s death also eliminated the strong magical presence within the trial, returning both Albus and Oda to their regular arcane states.

The pair then made their way to the pyramid’s peak, understanding that opening this chest would likely seal them within the trial forever. As Oda leaned forward to open the chest, Albus immediately called for him to halt, opting to dispel whatever magic might surround the chest to begin with. By doing so, Albus severed all magical connections that the chest held with the trial, effectively guaranteeing their escape as they claimed the golden key from within the chest. Yearning for fresher air, the pair hurried back to the trial’s start, inserting the golden key into the locked door and began their ascent above the stairs on the opposite side, the glow of natural sunlight and the warmth of the desert breeze but a hundred feet away.

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Session 35 Summary
The Gerudo Trials (Part 1)

Test of Body
Rocky the Rockette is slowly led down a flight of stairs, travelling down into the depths beneath the Gerudo Fortress for several minutes. She soon stands on solid ground, feeling the tip of a sharp spear prodding slightly into her back. Instructed by a guard to remove her blindfold, she is then told to descent into the large pit that stood before her. As she did so, Rocky found herself standing in a pit of sand, littered with old, dry dones of varying shapes and, seemingly, species.

Before long, the echoing sounds of a steel gate opening from somewhere above the pit could be heard, and snapping of claws from an unseen monstrosity shattered the silence that followed. Bracing herself, Rocky gazed up at the large scorpion-like creature that began to descend into the pit, scaling the walls like a spider. The creature bore on its hide a sturdy, thick scale shell, with a single red eye sunk into the front of its face. Stepping into the pit, the creature struck out at Rocky with its two large claws, and lethal stinger, which seemed to ooze a green, poisonous liquid as it swayed and struck out. Rocky retaliated with her Megaton Hammer, taking the creature’s piercing blows while retaliating with brutal swings of her own.

After a series of melee exchanges, the creature scurried its way up the pit arena walls, taking aim at Rocky with its stinger before unleashing its poisonous ray, crippling much of Rocky’s health. Taking moments to recuperate with her stock of red potions, Rocky began utilising her javelins for a long-ranged assault, finding that her aim wasn’t quite as consistent as she’d hoped for. After finally Rocky managed to strike a number of severe blows into its shell, the creature shed away its defenses and unleashed a flurry of fast-paced strikes. Feeling herself on the edge of defeat, Rocky fought back and hammered home two brutal strikes with the Megaton Hammer, prompting the creature to retreat back up near the top of the pit. Clinging to the wall, the creature unleashed a final burst of poisonous energy, before Rocky flung her final javelin directly through the creature’s eye, ending its rampage and its life.

Taking a few moments to recover, Rocky chugged down another red potion before beginning to scale back up the pit. As she returned to the chamber entrance, the stone door opened before her, permitting her to re-ascend towards the sunlight above.

Test of Heart
Both Talir and Leiutentant Mae Lin had their blindfolds removed following a descent into the Gerudo Catacombs. They were instructed by a Gerudo guard to traverse the trial ahead of them, or they may yet never see the sun again. Gazing out upon the long, wide hallway ahead of them, various obstacles stood before them. A large chasm, over which platforms shifted in a circular pattern between both sides while supported by a chain mechanism, needed to be overcome. As Mae and Talir coordinated their movements, they took care to avoid the deadly gaze of a nearby Beamos statue, whose lightning attack may have proved fatal if they were targeted.

Overcoming the chasm, the pair now stood before a towering stone wall, ascending at least 150 feet high, and covered with various growths of vines, bramble and other weeds. Both Mae and Talir scaled the wall with relative ease, and found themselves staring down into a dark abyss; a pitfall with seemingly no end, save for a small and faint light that glowed far below. Various tests were undertaken, revealing that the drop fell a little more than 100 feet, with the light emitting a splashing sound when an item was thrown down the roughly 120 foot drop towards it. After some deliberation, Mae made the brash decision to leap towards the light below, successfully landing in a pool of water. As Talir attempted to follow, he suffered a harsh blow from a solid surface as he misplaced his jump, then struggled down to the same body of water that Mae paddled her way across.

Exiting the room, both Mae and Talir now found themselves standing before yet another chasm, with two rows of separated stone columns leading makeshift paths along the far left and right sides of the large room. Though neither path led to the door that stood in wait upon the other side, they observed that a separate pillar standing in the center of the large, dark descent seemed to bear openings for a bridge to extend, with the mechanisms for its activation potentially lying in wait across either path. Each took a side and began the leap across, activating switches along the way to as to extinguish flaming barricades on either side, freeing up more of the path for the other.

As Talir reached the final platform on his side, he was greeted by the screech of a creature dropping down on him from an opening in the ceiling above; a vicious Dinolfos. Despite enduring a few nasty cuts and scratches, Talir managed to overcome the beast, shoving its body into the seemingly endless decent below. He triggered another floor switch, enabling Mae to reach her final platform, and come face to face with her own Dinolfos opponent. This fight proved to be far more challenging for the foreign fighter, with the Dinolfos knocking her unconscious with a flurry of ravenous swipes. Thankfully, Talir ran to his ally’s rescue, putting down the vile creature and bringing Mae back to consciousness. The pair then activated the final switch, extending the drawbridge in the center of the room, and heading through into the next chamber.

Test of Soul
Albus Severus Potter and Odaviing have their blindfolds removed, finding themselves sealed in a large square chamber, the center of which contains a circle of 12 chests surrounding a monument with text engraved upon it. The text details the nature of the test before them, in that they must choose from the chests within the trial up to four times in order to find the key to their escape, or else be sealed within the temple forever. A nearby plaque with different text etched into it provided an important clue, as it noted that the number of chests within the trial corresponded to the number of rooms that were altogether contained. It was at this time that they also became aware that each room had a designated symbol that corresponded with the chests in the main room.

So Albus and Oda began to make their way progressively through a number of rooms, finding that each room contained a unique puzzle themed to the nature of the room, mostly requiring a simple enchantment to solve. Upon solving each puzzle, the pair were given a clue as to to whether each room’s corresponding chest was worth the time opening, with most seeming to imply that their chests were not worth the time or the risk. A small number of the rooms seemed to hint that their chests may provide some assistance in escaping from the trial, and these were also noted.

While they were able to solve a small few puzzles at first, they soon encountered certain rooms that bewildered them, including a room that featured a hallway of adjustable mirrors and a seemingly magical source of light in the room’s center; as they possessed no means of redirecting the light, they pushed on to explore further rooms, before redirecting their path in a different direction from the beginning chamber. Interestingly, they noted that their use of magic within the trial seemed to have become somewhat infinite, and that they were being fed stronger magical energies as they progressed deeper into the trial. Though the source was unclear, they felt somewhat determined to discover by what means they had been gifted stronger arcane abilities.

Their journey soon brought them to a puzzle room containing a stone guardian statue, in which they were required to put the statue “to rest”. After a thorough investigation of their surroundings, and some timely magic on Albus’ behalf, the pair gained quick access to the room’s clue, which explained that the chest that held the room’s symbol would “hold a tool that would brighten the way”. Taking some time to head back to the main chamber, Albus and Oda made the decision to open the chest that linked back to the stone guardian’s room, finding a Mirror Shield. Knowing that their chances of overcoming certain puzzles had likely improved, they quickly pushed further back into the trial, obsessed with finding a means of escape as quickly as possible…

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Session 34 Summary
Friends or Foes?

The party, with Namoori, stood upon the bridge across Gerudo Valley, taking a few minutes to discuss the impending situation. Namoori made clear that they would be unable to ascertain what side each individual Gerudo was on until they themselves made it clear through conversation or action. Agreeing that they must move cautiously, Namoori, Talir and Rocky the Rockette began to walk across the slightly-unstable bridge, with Albus Severus Potter and Odaviing taking only a few short steps onto the bridge before coming to a complete stop, and Leiutentant Mae Lin waiting back behind the rest of the group on the near side of the valley.

After approaching the Gerudo sentries, Namoori attempted to reason with them that she and her newfound companions were on the side of the Gerudo people, though it quickly came to realisation that the sentries were aligned with Ganondorf’s cause. Talir reacted quickly by engaging the women in combat, prompting the rest of the party to follow suit. Despite several of the group enduring a few small wounds, and Namoori taking a hefty amount of damage, the sentries were successfully dispatched, save for one who managed to escape towards what Namoori identified to be the Gerudo Fortress.

Whilst tending to their wounds, several of the party members entered a nearby tent, which contained an assortment of adventurer’s furnishings, with maps, trophies and an assortment of boxed goods (including food supplies). Hearing a muffled noise coming from a nearby wardrobe, Mei sent her blade piercing into the wooden structure, stabbing a human man who then fell out of it, bound and gagged with rope. After his freshly-cut wound was healed, the man reluctantly revealed that he was a merchant whose fellow troupe members had been taken by the Gerudo and held hostage in the nearby fortress. The party agreed to search for and rescue the man’s companions, directing him to take refuge at Lon Lon Ranch in the meantime.

Moving forward as stealthily as possible, the party soon ventured to the forefront of a small hill that rested before the Gerudo Fortress. They took note of a large gate nearby – one that appeared to lead out into a larger desert region – and found no means of opening it at present. Namoori cautioned them that the Gerudo may very well have laid out a trap for them, and as such the party was successful in spoiling this trap, engaging numerous Gerudo warriors and assassins in combat. The battle proved too much for the Gerudo, and a booming female voice echoed over the fray, demanding a halt to all attacks.

A Gerudo woman clad in golden jewels emerged from the fortress entrance, and began to converse with Talir so as to come to more peaceful terms. As Talir noted that they sought to venture out into the Gerudo Desert, the woman made clear that only those who had passed the Gerudo Trials would be given the privilege of venturing past their borders. She then laid out the terms that should the party succeed in overcoming the trials, they would be permitted to head out into the desert; if they failed, they would surrender themselves and be brought before Ganondorf at once. Talir struck the agreement on behalf of the party, and they were each given a small amount of time to decide which of their group would take on one of the three trials, which Namoori would not take part in given that she had already overcome them before.

Rocky quickly agreed to take on the Test of Body, feeling herself to be more than physically capable of overcoming any bodily task. Talir and Mei felt themselves brave enough to venture into the Test of Heart. Albus and Oda, being the party’s two primary magic users, agreed to enter the Test of Soul. The party was divided accordingly, with each team being led down separate staircases into their respective tests.

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Session 33 Summary
Reunions Along the Western Road

As the party made its descent down Death Mountain, they each took some time to discuss the road ahead. Despite the growing situation in Hyrule Castle, as well as the uncertainty that presently surrounded Kakariko’s haunted well, they each agreed that it would likely be well-worth investigating Hyrule’s Western region, the Gerudo Desert, especially to confirm the rumours that captured refugees had been taken in that direction by Gerudo soldiers and mercenaries.

Taking little time to stay in Kakariko, only briefly to confirm their intentions with Impa, they moved toward the road heading down into Hyrule Field. As they did so, they paused to note a large, ominous cloud-like substance flying overhead, back towards Kakariko Village, then disappearing over the mountainous horizon. Despite being rather alarmed at the sight of the mysterious entity, the party decided that it would be safe enough to leave un-investigated for the time being, prioritising their journey west.

After a few hours of journeying the party arrived safely at Lon Lon Ranch, greeted instantly by ranch owner Talon Cramhen and shown to the inside of his farmhouse. Once inside, they were reunited with Talir, who recounted [[Session 32.5 Summary | his previous adventure into Castle Town]] and insisted that his place now rested with the people he had saved, whom he currently guarded at the ranch. He also confirmed that Namoori had joined him after she’d been rescued from Hyrule Castle, and she was quickly found and brought to meet with the rest of the group.

Namoori spoke with the party in great detail about their plan, including the status of enemies and potential allies in Gerudo Valley. While it was clear that there would be a significant number of loyal Ganon supporters in the desert region, it was quite possible that there would be a number of rebellious individuals who may yet take the party’s side as Namoori herself had done.

As they spoke with Namoori and Talir, another young woman stepped into the farmhouse, quickly locking eyes with Cyrus von Belradg in a mixture of longing, shock and frustration. She stormed up to him and slapped him in the face, not before taking hold of him in an embrace that quickly confused much of the surrounding party. Through conversation they learned that the woman was, in fact, Cyrus’ lost love Allira Nahla, whom Cyrus was now willing to completely devote himself to. This decision resulted in a compromise within the entire group, as Namoori and Talir would rejoin the party while Cyrus remained with Allira and the rest of the Hylian refugees, promising to protect them as best he could while keeping spirits high with his bardic tunes.

Come next morning, the reformed party set out back towards the West keeping just off the main road to keep unfriendly eyes off them. Despite these efforts, they were eventually set upon by a wandering band of Bokoblins, similar to the ones that Talir previous encountered. A few cuts and bruises later, the creatures were all slain and the group was free to continue their venture, sharply bringing them onto a less green terrain as they wandered into a long, stone cavernous road.

Before long, the party stood before a steep valley, connected by a wooden bridge that stood over a drop that lead into a furious river. On the opposing side stood two Gerudo sentries, who had not yet given sign that they had notice the group’s presence…

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Session 32.5 Summary
Bravery and Foolishness

As Talir strode out into Hyrule field, it didn’t take long for him to notice the overcast of dangerous looking storm clouds that seemed to be slowly spreading from, and hovering over, Hyrule Castle. As he began to proceed over the stone bridge that connects the road to Kakariko Village with the greater stretch of Hyrule Field, the sounds of hooves and the shrieks of echoes closed in from some distance ahead. Taking rash action, Talir dove into the nearby river, submerging himself as dark shapes eventually began to move on to the bridge. After noting that the creatures were seemingly of Goblin descent, riding upon large boars, Talir floated patiently as the beasts rode off back into Hyrule Field once more, seemingly losing interest in whatever had gathered their attention in this area.

Emerging from the river, Talir journeyed across the field for several hours, soon arriving at the broken gates of Castle Town. Once inside, Talir silenced a few Redeads on the way to the Temple of Time. He met with Durian Vosterku, who had continued to upkeep the temple in the wake of the Gerudo invasion. Talir presented the black box he’d taken from beneath Kakariko’s well, and while Durian could not confirm what was inside it, he urged Talir not to take a chance on doing so, as there was something “rather off” about it. While conversing, Talir also learned that there were still a number of Hylians surviving in Castle Town, and some had been captured and were being kept in Hyrule Castle, either alive or dead. He decided that it would be best to set out and see if any of the people could be located and saved, and bode Durian farewell once more.

Once back in the town, Talir headed towards the Drunken Goron Inn as his first place of search for survivors, he managed to hide from a passing trio of humans, one a red-robed cultist and the other two mere mercenaries. Seizing a moment when the man wandered out on his own, Talir captured and gagged the cultist, demanding that he inform him of where any prisoners would be being kept. Somewhat begrudgingly, the cultist revealed that the jail cells of Hyrule Castle were full of captives, and agreed to lead Talir inside.

Talir, after disguising himself in previously-acquired cultist robes, held his captive in front as the pair walked cautiously into Hryule Castle, quickly descending down a flight of stairs into the dungeons. Aside from a collection of Hylian prisoners, Talir discovered that Namoori was alive and also being held hostage in a cell. Quickly formulating a plan, Talir freed and united with Namoori to combat the now-hostile cultist priest and mercenary guards. The pair then freed around two-dozen captives and led them all through the castle’s sewerage system, escaping back into Hyrule Field.

The escaping Hylians were led swiftly to Lon Lon Ranch, where they were led into the main farmhouse by a jovial Talon Cramhen. It was upon their arrival that the dreaded horns of unseen creatures began to blow in the distance, growing louder each second. Talir opted to defend the ranch entrance while Namoori stayed to defend the people, and now met the same goblin-like creatures from the previous day, now revealed to be a pack of Bokoblins, including one that was far larger than the rest, seemingly their leader.

Unable to scare them off, Talir quickly found himself overwhelmed by the numerous creatures and their boar mounts, and made the rash decision to open the black box. Almost immediately came an explosion of dark energy, knocking back all of the attacking creatures and sending those who had not yet entered the fray scurrying, including the leader. Talir gazed up as a large, shadowy cloud dotted with purple, glowing blots formulated from the energy, and began moving rapidly eastward, towards the mountains and Kakariko Village. He opted not to give chase, instead heading back inside the ranch to attend to the needs of the people and protect them in the absence of a guard force.

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Session 32 Summary
Evil sleeps no more

Our party ventured deeper into what had now become the Dodongo’s Cavern, finding themselves crawling through a series of passageways that combed the deeper reaches of Death Mountain. Taking time to rest in a room filled with steam, Rocky the Rockette and Odaviing spent the night ravaged with nightmares, fiery walls that surrounded them, whispering evil thoughts, eventually culminating with a pair of red and evil eyes taking shape within the flames. The pair awoke in sweat, unusual for either race, disturbed by the event.

Their travels took them into a deep tunnel, emerging into a small cavern with various lava pools on different sides of the circular room. They found themselves suddenly under attack by Salamanders, seemingly disturbing the creatures’ nesting grounds. After disposing of the hot-headed serpents, the party began searching the room for any clues of where to go next. Rocky happened upon a large chest, containing the Megaton Hammer, which she took as her new prized weapon.

Leiutentant Mae Lin came upon a series of Draconic messages that forebodes the return of Volvagia, a mythical red dragon that was thought dead or sealed away by ancient magic. Fearing that the legendary beast may have indeed returned, the party agreed to bring warning to the Goron tribe once they had departed Dodongo’s cavern.

Heading back upward, the group eventually returned to the cavern’s main chamber from a higher vantage point, taking hint from a nearby stone carving and using explosives on the large stone Dodongo face’s eyes. After doing so, a new pathway was opened via the structure’s mouth, and the party descended back to the floor of the cavern so as to proceed through. They soon came upon a large steel door, heading through and finding themselves in a room populated with naught but bare stone. Moving in to investigate, much of the party was instantly swallowed by a suddenly plummeting floor, sending them crashing into a new chamber, centered with a large pool of lava.

Once the entire party was down there, they quickly found themselves face-to-face with a terrifying creature; the gargantuan King Dodongo. The beast breathed a heavy amount of fire upon them, initially devastating them with its ferocious embers, before devastating them with brute force as it curled and rolled through their ranks. Albus Severus Potter and Oda furiously cast spells at the creature while Cyrus von Belradg, Leiutentant Mae Lin and Rocky provided a more physical presence. The battle was intense, and long, but the party eventually managed to slay the beast, leaving it to melt within the same pool of lava that it would have once called home. As the lava quickly dried and crusted around the dead creature, a large, shining red ruby was discovered amongst the heap, none other than Goron’s Ruby.

Using a combination of wits and explosives, the party found an exit from the chamber; one that thankfully lead to a small opening to the cliff-sides of outer-Death Mountain. Scaling the treacherous heights, they soon returned to Goron City and Darunia, giving him the stone and being officially pardoned of all offenses and mistrusts, and dubbed sworn brothers and sisters of the Goron people.

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