They did end up using the scroll of Limited Wish to cure June, because it was too dangerous to leave him insane. About a half hour later, they joined up and discussed their findings, and decided to use the divination quill of the Peacock Spirit to figure out just what in the hell they were actually supposed to be doing in the Runeforge.
The answer was pretty cryptic, but it seemed to say that they needed two 'components' from opposing schools. You could tell a component because it would glow if you put it in the fountain, and if they dumped them in the central fountain together, it would glow bright gold and then the weapon 'that they already had' could be dipped in and would become a Godslaying weapon.
So Kaito ran back to Wrath and took out a bunch of stuff that he thought might be the component from Wrath -- but no joy. In fact, the most promising candidate (the proto-flesh) disintegrated when removed from the temple.
So they rested up, and decided to go visit Lust next. The temple of Lust was just one big room, with pillars inscribed with various sexual positions all around and cages hung from the ceiling. In the middle was a giant silk tent. Also, there were friendly succubi.
The paladin did not like the friendly succubi, but was not willing to attack even a very evil creature first, although he kept his scimitar drawn and warned them repeatedly not to try anyone. Er, anything.
The succubi took them on a brief tour of the cages, some of which had rotting corpses in them and some of which had trapped people that the succubi insisted were enjoying their imprisonment. It was hard to tell for sure since all the cages were sealed with walls of force, and only their mistress could put people in the cages, or take them out.
June snuck into the tent to reconnoiter, but didn't find much before the whole party was invited in to talk to the mistress. They passed a bunch of giants dressed up as harem boys, and then came to a throne room in the middle of the tent where they were able to explain themselves.
The mistress had a short temper -- maybe because her long-time lover from Pride hadn't visited her in literal ages -- but said that while she didn't know anything about the Godslayer, she thought she knew what 'component' they needed and would trade it for a similarly valuable magic item (as long as it was covered in gems or otherwise sparkly) or for five minutes alone in a room with one of the men in the party.
Kaito considered volunteering. "I know she's going to drain my life energy, but Zeddicus says he can cure that. So as long as she doesn't drain me to death..."
June: "What in the world makes you think she wouldn't drain you to death?"
Kaito: "But I had a vision from the fountain of giving in to her charms!"
Elyssie: "I'm pretty sure the visions from the fountain were all ways that we could die."
They ended up trading an expensive but only somewhat useful ioun stone Altei had for the magic 'component', which turned out to be an enchanted dildo. I mean, 'vibrating jeweled rod'. The mistress also asked them to check on Pride and see what was keeping her lover.
Then they were allowed to leave, in peace. A quick test verified that no, they hadn't been cheated -- the magic rod glowed when brought near the fountain, and made the fountain itself glow faintly gold when dipped into the swirling colors. So they just needed one more!
For some reason, they decided to visit Gluttony next. Maybe it was because the paladin really wanted to smite some evil after tolerating the succubi, and the necromancy temple seemed unlikely to lead to a peaceful resolution.
The first room was smallish, circular, and empty... except for all the secret doors to either side of the main passage, that continued straight through. They opened one of the secret doors, and revealed an alcove containing a mummy! It went down fast... but then all the other secret doors opened, and more mummies poured out to swarm the party.
They also went down fast, after June decided to just fill everything with fire. The party survived thanks to the Protection From Fire spell he'd used on them; the mummies not so much. He recast the protection, and they moved on.
Past the mummy room was a circular shaft, leading down hundreds of feet, with wide walkways bridging four doors in the cardinal directions, each with a different glyph. They'd come out of the Candy door --
Phoof: "The secret ingredient is mummy rot."
-- which left 'Bread and Wine', 'Cheese and Milk', and 'Cannibalistic Ghouls' as the other choices.
So, Bread and Wine. It had lots of wine -- really good wine. It had a clay golem in the shape of a naga that they had to smash (throwing the wine at it turned out not to be its secret weakness). It had an empty gold-plated sarcophagus with gems to pry out of eye sockets. That was about it.
So, at Elyssie's insistence, they opened the Cannibalistic Ghoul door next. By punching it. Unfortunately, damaging the door released a swarm of wraiths that they had to fight on the not-nearly-so-wide-now-that-we're-fighti
Opening the door normally, they and found an octagonal chamber full of blood and partially harvested bodies. Phoof had them turn back and open the Cheese door as well, then cast a massive daylight spell with a hundred-foot radius...
...which failed to pass the threshold of the Cheese door, because of the massive evil artifacts inside. Two crystals to either side shot black lightning into the walls, with a purple veil like some sort of portal between them. No one was willing to enter the portal.
So they headed back to the Cannibal wing... except for June and Noggin's valet, who kept examining the dark crystals. In the Cannibal wing they found an alchemical laboratory and a library of necromantic books, and then a surgical lab with a larger library of even more evil necromantic books, along with an evil necromancer that Zeddicus attacked immediately.
Kaito tried throwing a dagger at him and missed badly enough to embed it in one of the walls, releasing another swarm of wraiths. The wraiths mostly scattered, though, not wanting to spend time in Phoof's daylight.
The weird surgical necromancer got quickly surrounded, and even tearing out and eating his own liver failed to save him from Elyssie repeatedly punching him (and the Paladin smiting him, and Altei backstabbing).
But no one got a 'rune of gluttony' for beating him. Was he not the boss?
Meanwhile, June tried summoning a succubus to explore the purple veil. He got *five* succubi, which was a bit of a surprise. They spent a minute or so exploring, then came back to tell him that it was a portal to the plane of negative energy, and vast bat-winged creatures waited there to attack anyone who came through. There was also apparently some travel time since they'd immediately headed back once they arrived.
Kaito, carrying some magic items for Ash or June to identify, arrived right around the time the succubi should have vanished as the spell expired.
They did not vanish, at least not into thin air like they should have. They did seem protective of June, and at least acted like they were under his control. He still wasn't happy about it.
Zeddicus was even less happy about it -- he'd come to the undead temple to get *away* from friendly succubi.
Further exploration led to a tense battle against half a dozen mummies in extremely tight quarters, where their immunity to piercing damage meant that Kaito had to fight them in tiny fox form, by biting their rotting, diseased bones. The three succubi who hadn't wandered off also kind of helped. Afterwards they found a secret door, which led to closet, with a secret door that led to another closet with another secret door that led to a laboratory with another necromancer inside, this one obviously undead.
They explained their mission, and it was slightly cordial for a while. Kaito tried to get the succubi to sleep with the undead necromancer instead of constantly hitting on June, but they were grossed out -- there's no way they were sleeping with a lich!
At any rate, at some point the lich revealed that he was, in fact, working directly for Karzogg, and that was enough for Zeddicus to instantly roll initiative.
The lich cast mirror images, which absorbed a couple of Kaito's attacks before he teleported across the room. June tried to dispel more of the images with scorching rays, but they splashed against a wall of force. Not wanting to let the lich sit there casting all the buff spells he could eat, June grabbed Elyssie and teleported into the walled-off part of the room so that she could punch him... but on her first punch, the lich teleported away again, leaving them trapped in a little closet-like space.
So they searched for secret doors... and found one. Behind it was the QUADRUPLE SECRET LABORATORY where the lich was continuing to enhance himself.
Elyssie jumped down -- triggering a trap in the room that did massive damage to her, even though she saved -- and took a flying kick at his head. He responded with a Finger of Death. She responded by falling dead on the ground. June responded with a fireball. A massive, 141-point fireball.
...apparently, the lich hadn't gotten around to casting Protection from Fire yet, because that killed him.
June flew down into the chamber to look for the Phylactory, but the trap was still active even though he didn't touch the floor, so he just grabbed Elyssie's body and teleported out. Zeddicus wasn't afraid of no deathtrap, and -- once the wall of force dissipated -- jumped down to search. He found a bunch of books, a bunch of gems, a ridiculously magical staff... and the trap hit him again, and he buggered out, since the last sarcophagus was locked.
Altei had a wand of knock, and popped it open. Inside was a small wooden casket, which they retrieved. Inside was a scroll of cloth with runes all over it. Was this the component?
Hopefully not, sine like the proto-flesh it burned to ash as they tried to take it out of the temple. They never learned that it was actually the lich's phylactery, and they'd killed him by accident.
No one got a rune of gluttony though.
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Phoof: "Why isn't anyone else sad that Elyssie is dead?"
Kaito: "I'm sure we'll find a way to bring her back. Just maybe not in here."
Zeddicus: "Sorry for not being a real cleric, but I wanted to play a *fun* character."
Altei: "Does this mean she'll have to play one of the succubi now?"