Bob, Ahnold, Rei, and Pimkin stood and watched the mysterious stranger hawk his wares in the village of Greyden, knowing that this individual was connected to Skarda and the whereabout of their missing compatriot's body. However, while they watched the barker whisked off a sheet from a large standing mirror and Bob, Rei, and Pimkin found themselves drawn into the mirror while Ahnold managed to look away in time.
However, a large bestial fiend appeared behind the befuddled war priest, clawing him mercilessly twice and then tossing Ahnold into the mirror.
Once the party was reunited, they found themselves surrounded by a veritable army of heavy infantry and cavalry and surrendered their arms and equipment to their captors. The party was put in irons and escorted along with several townsfolk to the Ziggurat of Skarda and taken to the dungeons underneath. Taken to a small room, each member of our intrepid group was forced to remove their garb and put on tattered clothes and manacles put back on. Rei tried valiantly to call upon her power of the eldritch forces, but she found the manacles too much of a burden to successfully cast her spell on the guards. However, by the time they got to Bob the young warrior was torn between his desire to fight on against all odds or capitulate to their captors.
Well, he is a fighter after all, so Bob relented to his pent up rage and attempted to disarm one of the guards which failed miserably. However, Rei called upon her dark powers once again and managed to cause two of the guards to fall asleep. Bob took advantage of the situation and quickly grabbed a longsword from one of the sleeping guards and took on the commanding officer and remaining guard. Rei then cast Suggestion on the commander to give up, and he quickly complied. Rei retrieved the keys to the manacles and no sooner had she unshackled herself and Ahnold did the door to the inner cells open to two more jailers. Rei shot forth a lightning bolt striking the jailers and the remaining guard. One of the jailers fell where he stood and the other one quickly regained his wits and closed the door, locking it with the only set of keys that the party was aware of (the commanding officer only had the keys to the manacles).
In the confusion the commander pulled on a lever, sounding a bell in the distance and before they had time to regroup and re-equip themselves, Bob, Ahnold, and Rei found themselves facing opponents from both sides of the room. Rei was quick to act, casting confusion on a group of soldiers armed with crossbows. But the dungeon's master quickly entered into the fray, a large burly dwarf swinging a savage great axe at Rei, knowing that an active spell-caster is always a priority. The battle was savage but the party overcame the jailers and their master, with one of the subordinates understanding the true force arrayed against him and dashed deeper into the dungeon.
Rei and Ahnold gave pursuit while Bob decided mercy wasn't something he was willing to grant at the moment, other than that brought by the quick motion of the sword. Our two stallwart casters ran deep into the bowels of the dungeon after the remaining jailer, barely taking heed of the cries of confusion and pleas for help from those held within their caged prisoned walls. Ahnold and Rei soon found the last jailer banging fruitlessly on a large locked gate while two high ranking soldiers impassively ignored from the other side. Seeing the plucky Rei, both soldiers fired bolts from their crossbows but missed and after a less than optimal blast from Rei, decided to move away from the gate and get more help. Ahnold easily beat down the last guard into unconsciousness and retrieved the keys from the limp mans' belt. Rei then took the keys and passed them to one of the prisoners and told them to let themselves out while she and Ahnold returned to where they left Bob.
Wanting to know what lay before them, Bob, Ahnold, and Rei then went back to the gates only to find a small force of soldiers waiting for them. But it only took a fireball from Rei to turn all but one of them to ash. And Bob moved up and dispatched the last soldier. Feeling emboldened, Bob moved forward to another set of gates, getting ready to unlock them with the keys found from the jailer when he heard a whisper from just beyond "Why Hello Bob…". And just as quickly a large ravenous pit opened at the stalwart fighter's feet. But the gods had apparently been smiling on Bob and he managed to jump to the solid ground just as the pit appeared. A quick conversation ensued between Bob and the newest threat, and Bob not only found out he was facing Skarda, but the man was really the magician shop keeper that had assisted them in Specularum and Kelvin earlier. Skarda then whispered to Bob again to jump into the pit. And again, the fates smiled upon our intrepid fighter and he managed to resist the urge to comply with the wizard's request.
Ahnold and Rei also came forward to confront the apparent master of the mirror realm, with Rei sending out rays of intense heat against their antagonist while Ahnold called forth help from the heavens above. Surprised by the power of the party's newest associate, Skarda choose to tactically teleport away, leaving the party to their own devices for the present.
The party decided to take time to regroup and assess the situation and reflect on the revelation of the identity of Skarda. During this time, one of the prisoners came forward to thank the party for freeing him of his cell, a venerable elf named Eletha Eilstina, a devoted worshipper of Ilsundal. Eletha explained what he knew of the mirrored realm and what he knew of Skarda and the wizard's insatiable quest for power. While our adventurer's don't know what Skarda's end game is, all they know for now is their freedom is tenuous at best and that only by heeding Eletha's advice do they have a chance to get free of the dungeon first, and then the mirrored realm.