After defeating Azul, the dreaded dominator of minds, the heroes were invited to the Merwyrm castle for celebrations. One of Azul’s thralls, a wise sage of the Merwyrm, knew of a Nexus path to Daemonis and could provide the directions to it. But before they left, Carric asked the Merwyrm about something Azul had tempted him with: A way to turn back time and see his mentor again. According to all arcane knowledge, such power was impossible, but the sage did mention a legend of a pearl that could turn back time: The Time Ebb. But without any further information but the name, the Party continued on.
Pausing only to briefly explore a haunted underground ruin, the Heroes of Dusk Coast found the Nexus path: A cramped tunnel that angled upwards, through the mysterious swirling Nexus to a smell of fire and brimstone: Daemonis.
An inhospitable plane where black stone and glowing lava battled for dominance under a blood-red sky, Daemonis offered the Party their next challenge: What next? Without any further guidance, except the hiding spot of Beligandir’s escape tunnel, the Party sent Khava flying up to find any landmarks. He found only one place that seemed to suggest some sort of life or civilization. With only that direction to go, the Party set off into the heat.
After some difficulty with a heated crystal, the Party found an observation outpost, manned by 3 winged demons. To gain more information, Khava and Althaea, under a spell of invisibility, went closer to investigate. Not getting anything relevant out of the demons’ discussion, Althaea decided to try the oldest trick in the book: A flying rock. One of the demons took flight and did investigate the disturbance from above. Remembering that Althaea could change her appearance, Khava concocted a plan: He lured the scout out of sight where he and the elven bard stabbed the demon to death. Then Althaea musicized her appearance to that of the demon, intent on covert interrogation. But the tiefling’s plan failed; Althaea couldn’t create the creature’s wings.
Before they were discovered, Althaea used her dimension door to teleport herself and Khava to safety. There they performed another, more familiar interrogation: They spoke with the demon’s corpse. From that brief questionnaire, they gathered important information: The name of the Spawning Pit nearby, Muralca and its leader, Maril. They also found out that they were enemies with Beligandir.
But as their activities were attracting attention, they decided to continue to Muralca from another direction. Khava managed to find a narrow canyon that led the group to the Pit of Muralca; A round pond filled with organic sludge, surrounded by spartan, stone-hewn platforms and ledges. But alas, their approach was noticed, and the Party emerged to a trap of demons at the ready, demanding them to drop their weapons. Everyone complied, except for Edessa, who was made invisible by Carric and the sorcerer himself. His refusal to give his staff was met by a shower of spikes from the tails of the guardian demons and the sorcerer fell. Thanks to Althaea’s quick healing, his wounds were not fatal.
Now disarmed, the group were paraded in front of an entire city of demons into an arena in front of the Pit itself. The jeering crowds fell silent as a winged, pale woman, clad in black and red platemail emerged, demanding to know who had walked into the heart of her domain. Dulkan answered, telling that they were as what they seemed: A group of planar travelers and asked her name in return. The woman chuckled, answering that she was Miral, the Pit Lord of Muralca.