Part 55: Now, the old man tells stories...
Chapter 42 - Now, the old man tells stories...
Alright, so we'd just been given a mission of EPIC IMPORTANCE to go find a way to kill Yaga-Shura. To accomplish this, I headed back to my pocket plane. I gotta tell you, it may not be teleportation exactly, but it's an almost acceptable substitute.
When ordered to place me on the road to the Marching Mountains, it put us down right about here.
Fun fact - the only things in this entire area that can hurt Asim at all are the Fire Giants and the occasional spellcaster if they decide to use something offensive. That's right, everything else in this entire area uses +1 or unenchanted weapons. It's really fun to do this as a Good-aligned tank, since you can just breeze through the army without taking a scratch, except maybe the fire giants.
We rescued this merchant, who was understandably thankful. He... didn't really have anything, unfortunately.
He DOES have an Obsidian Ioun Stone for +1 Constitution, but that's not really useful if no one in your party is at a borderline number.
It was about this time I noticed that my familiar had grown a little stronger. And fatter.
Ah, Fire Giants. Fire Giants, meet Minsc.
See the damage numbers? Yeah, around 50 each time. That's because Critical Strike makes everything for a round be a natural 20. Minsc has 7 attacks/round at this point. He can do a pretty easy 350 damage each round, and that's a lot of crushing squishy things.
Nothing else around here, so we moved on to a sort of temple in a swamp. At the entrance, there was DRAMA!
Yes. Gorion. Have you forgotten all that I had taught you, brought you up to be? Have you forgotten me?
What do you mean? What have I done?
I tried to save you from your destiny, Asim. I tried to turn you into a force for good. And what have you done? Carved a path of blood and murder wherever you go! You are a disappointment. You were supposed to be so much more, Asim. You were supposed to be something greater, and yet in the end you murdered even I!
Sarevok murdered you, not I!
A lie! You do not see the truth and you shall be made to!
And you have failed me and everything I hoped you would be. That is why I am murdered by you. You think this animal, Sarevok, is responsible for my death? I expect no better from him. He is a slave to ambition, and yet you resurrect him and hail him as comrade.
Beware, old man. You were in my way once. Do not tempt me a second time.
Where have you come to, my ward? What have you done? So many bodies left in your wake, so much pain and destruction that you have caused. Why? Why?!
But I have done much good as well!
Then you know nothing of yourself! You have learned nothing! You grow ever closer to being a slave of your blood... you will murder all that you love and die a monster! I will not allow it!
No! I refuse to believe that Gorion would cause this much pain!
You... you resist me?! Oh, very cunning. It shall be a pleasure to feast upon your god-child soul!
Yeah. Lots and lots of creatures that have level drain abilities. Pretty lame fare overall, though. Then, skeletons who were mad at me because I'm not my father.
No, it is but a vessel for the Master's power! An abomination! Kill it! Kill them all in the name of Bhaal!!
Crazy witches ALWAYS live in swamps. I guess it's just the fashion. They could go against it, I guess, but you don't mess with the classics.
Who is this Nyalee you speak of, witch?
Why, the Nyalee is I! The Witch of the Glade, I is called, and for good reason, it is! But questions... you have so many questions, know I! Answer all your questions, Nyalee will! Oh, yes! Nyalee has been waiting for you, and she knows why you come, she does!
Well, it's Asim's doing, of course. Everyone knows Asim and has been waiting for him. It's not like we're surprised by this anymore, you know.
It is the boy... that traitorous fool of a half-giant boy of mine. You come because of Yaga-Shura! My boy has been a pain for you and I both, and you wish his blood, yes?
What do you mean 'boy of mine'? Yaga-Shura can't be your son.
Nay, the boy did not spring from Nyalee's loins. Nyalee did see him for the spawn-child he was while but a babe and stole him from the crib! Raise him here in this temple as her own did she!
Why would you wish revenge on your own son, then?
Because a betrayer is the boy! Did Nyalee not raise the boy? Did Nyalee not teach the boy the old tricks, yes? And the boy did leave Nyalee here to rot! Steals her heart, even!!
Then tell me how to kill him.
That Nyalee will do. Hee hee! The traitorous boy will not even see it coming, oh no! Nyalee will haves her revenge! Listen closely, then, spawn-child... Once a great cleric of Bhaal was Nyalee! But then great Bhaal is dead, and Nyalee is forced to turn to the older arts to survive. Nyalee steals the spawn-child Yaga-Shura to raise in this temple, did she. A new Lord of Murder did Nyalee hope to create! Foolish old Nyalee. Teaches the boy the old tricks did she, teaches the boy to remove his heart did she. The boy has removed his heart, and he will keep it afired and bathed in magical flames. While his heart burns, no harm may come to Yaga-Shura. No death may come until his heart is quenched!
So I must find his heart and quench it. How?
Only Nyalee knows the words and the arts to extinguish the boy's heart, she does. But Nyalee needs her own heart to use the arts... and the boy stole her heart years ago. Keeps it, he does. Finds Nyalee's heart and Yaga-Shura's heart both, spawn-child... brings them both to her. Nyalee will quench his heart forever, then! Hee hee! So surprised, so shocked will he be!
Very well. I shall seek out these hearts and return.
Yes! Hee hee! Nyalee will haves her revenge, oh yes! Go, spawn-child... go and finds Nyalee's poor heart! Bring me the boy's, as well! Nyalee cannot wait!
Found a Nymph's Tear somewhere around there, fought off some more random undead, and moved on in search of Yaga-Shura's heart.
And so, we came to the Marching Mountains. I was very disappointed to find them quite stationary. We should start giving things logical names.
I... I don't understand what happened here.
Why, only the most bafflingly random Bhaalspawn sequence in the entire game! Also, I actually managed to kill them all this time. Usually I'll kill one or two and the rest run away before I get that far.
Right about here the game starts beating you over the head with mundane weapons, since they're the only way to hurt Magic Golems. Well, that and traps. I ended up killing the one in here with the Spike Traps I set up to be cheap to the spawns.
Into the temple we go!
Wait, are all those...?
OH JESUS CHRIST THEY'RE EVERYWHERE
In a sort of... container-like thing surrounded by lava (ouch ouch ouch hot) we found a Girdle of Fire Giant Strength.
I didn't screencap all of these containers because they're largely the same, but there's four of them, one for each of the wardstones you need.
Armed with the first two wardstones, we could touch these two doors and shut down the barriers protecting the other two containers.
One of the other containers held the Psion's Blade.
And so, I was able to shut down this stupid machine and get further into the temple.
Once further in...
Yeah, he got stuck in the door.
Aww, what's the matter fatty, too fat to get through the door?
I AM NOT FAT!
Are too, fatty.
I AM BIG BONED NOT FAT!
Yeah, yeah, and now you're dead. Fatty.
Upon his corpse I found a Baalor's Claw.
This was pretty obviously Yaga-Shura's heart.
I put his heart in my pack.
This door, and the one like it on the other side of the chamber, are why the Girdle of Fire Giant Strength is there - you need 22 or more strength to open them.
Ah, say hi to Imix. He is one of the two Elemental Princes of Fire.
You fight one for each element, including two elements you don't actually have access to summon. You can summon the princes of Air, Earth, and Fire.
We found on Imix's remains The Ravager and the Amulet of the Master Harper. The Ravager wasn't too nice now, but holy fuck did it ever get wonderful later on.
And here is Yaga Shura's bed or something I guess. Found inside it a Bag of Plenty and Nyalee's Heart.
And Jan decided to talk to this woman.
Why are you chained up in this place?
Why do you think, fool? I am Yaga-Shura's unwilling concubine. Now release me at once!
I'm sorry, my good lady. I will release you at once.
Ah... free at last. I suppose I am in your debt. Well, I will be beholden to no man. Though it galls me, I will tell you what I know of Yaga-Shura.
Truly, captivity has not tamed this shrew! Perhaps there is an idea for a play in this...
I demand you tell me who you are and how you got here.
My name is Ehlastra, a warrior from the Northern lands. I had heard legends of Yaga-Shura, a Child of Bhaal born unto a giantess. I came to this place to see if the legends were true.
You mean you were just curious? Surely there must be more to it then that.
You simple fool! I came here to join Yaga-Shura, to offer my sword to his service, to follow the mighty giant as his army laid waste to the Southlands! I wanted to become part of his unstoppable war machine, to revel in the slaughter, to have my blade drip with the blood of all those Yaga-Shura crushed beneath his mighty boot!
And instead you wound up as his pleasure slave. How ironic.
The fire giants in this Temple are short sighted fools. They recognized my warrior skills, but saw me only as a potential mate for Yaga-Shura, a chance for him to further spread Bhaal's seed. But now they are dead, and I yet survive. My only regret is that I could not kill Yaga-Shura's followers with my own hands. I have nothing more to say on this matter. Ask your questions, gnome, and I will answer them as best I may. But be quick - I desire to escape before the master of this place returns.
I have nothing I need to ask you. You may go, if you wish.
Then I shall return to the North; the sulfur stench of these lands galls me! But if rumors of my shameful imprisonment reach my ears, I will know who to hunt down for vengeance.
I honestly have no idea what the fuck that was all about. Then again, giants aren't famed for their intelligence... In another container there was some sort of book page.
Oh, and before I forget again, meet the Fate Spirit. It can summon anyone I want it to, provided they aren't dead or anything.
Anyway, we went back to Nyalee's crazy swamp-temple home.
I may have... I have two hearts, here. Are they what you need?
Oh! 'Tis Nyalee's heart, it is! The spawn-child has found Nyalee's poor heart! And, yes... this be the boy's heart, as well. Gives Nyalee her heart and she will extinguish the boy's, she will, oh yes!
And... there. It be done, a simple thing, it is. The boy's heart is cold, now. As... as cold as his mother's old heart... You... you will hurts my boy, won't you? No... no, what has Nyalee done?! My poor boy, the spawn-child will hurts him! Nyalee must stops him!!
I don't understand. The witch has her heart back... why is she not nicer to us? What? Oh... yes, I see. Uh-huh. Thank you, Boo. Boo is so smart.
Well, there's a bit of irony for you, my raven. We return her lost heart, and with it she rediscovers love for her traitorous son. I'd weep at the sentiment... if, ah, we weren't about to cross swords...
Come, spirits of the glade! Come, woodsies of the forest!! We... we must protects my boy! My precious Yaga-Shura!!
Yyyyyeah, she died, uhh, pretty fast.
Okay, sorry this took so long. I'll try to get another next week, but I have two or three papers due the week after, depending on whether or not I'm remembering all the due dates correctly, so no guarantees.