The Beast Beneath the Mountain
Agree to form a strike force
If you have sought me out then you must be ambitious. if you have foubnd me, you must be wicked. These aspects combined make you perfect for the tasks I can place before you.
Very well. You wish to prove you are capable? You wish to prove that you are without compunction? Good. Not far from here there is an office wherin a group who could cause this enterprise trouble have gathered. They are members of the pathetic Legacy Chain, and even now they cast spells of augury to ascertain my ends. You are to enter this place, take what they have uncovered so that no others will know it, and crush any survivors. Leave none standing. Then, we will begin.
To cement this pact, I shall confer to you a name for this band of rogues. I shall call you TaskForceName. A name that shall echo in the dark halls of infamy.
Office @ Cap au Diable (Circle of Thorns,Vindicators,Bat'Zul,Legacy Chain)
Objective: You found what they had discovered.
These notes are all about the Legacy Chain's ritual.
'The first group is reporting results. Now that we know what to look for, it did not take long to verify it. So obvious, why didn't we see it before? It explains so much.'
'The second group has begun. They're trying to trace it out now. It's immense power, spreading out everywhere. Does Dr. Aeon even know? he must suspect! It would explain the clockwork, too. The ones out here, they're not under the control of the Clockwork King of Paragon City. They're under it's control. Incredible.'
'First group is back in. They've traced it's origin back. We will need Henri's journals. We must get them, and soon.'
'The second group had to stop. They've been discovered. The Circle is watching. They're planing something. Something only their twisted monds could comprehend. I worry even more about Tarikoss. I warned that he would go too far and should have been stopped earlier. It may be too late now. I only hope I can get what we've discovered to my superiors.'
Mission Complete: You broke up the Legacy Chain's ritual.
I felt their rituals break from here. you were merciless and efficient. Just what I've been looking for. I know now that you are exactly what I seek for this grim work. If you help me in this, then all the riches and wealth of the world shall be yours. If you have no stomach for darkness, if you are a mere poseur to villainy, then I have misjudged you, and you may leave. But if you are willing to risk all the lives in the Isles and the world for your own power, then speak to me, for we will be ready to begin.
Commit yourself to Tarikoss's dark plans
This is your last chance to leave all of this behind. If you have any remaining moral qualms, If you still entertain pretensions that you are simply misunderstood, if some small part of you believes that there is a golden heart deep within you, then it is not too late for you to go.
I am not going to trifle around with petty games of position amongst the rabble. I seek a greater power. If you wish to profit by this, then there can be no hope of redemption for you.
But we are not unoposed in this quest. The Legacy Chain seek the truth and will try to stop us, and the dread mages of the Circle of Thorns are also after the power we seek. It is this later effort which worries me the most. The Circle have unleashed a horde of demons to attack the power transfer system, and I would like to know why. Discover their reason while I continue to prepare.
Now, you are committed. There is no turning back. Very good. Very good. Now, as to the Circle:
Their attack on the Power Transfer System proves that they know a great deal about it's true nature. The question, then, is why attack now? Your goal is not to stop their attack. Let Arachnos worry about that. Your goal is to beat the truth from the attacker's leaders.
Instanced Outdoor [Hell Forge] @ Cap au Diable
The PTS is always unsettling, even without the Circle's presence.
Objective: You beat the truth out of one of the mages leading the Circle's attack.
Mission Complete: You found the information you needed to know.
That this power drop from the PTS should co-incide with the Circle's attack would be enough, even without the words of the Foreman and that fool Circle sorcerer. This confirms what they've done. They must have known that I was close, and that with your aid we could succeed, and so were moved to rash action. Action we can take advantage of. but first, we must deal with some of the others who will have noticed what the Circle has done before they become a problem. our moment of victory comes, but we must first clear the way.
You have proven to me that you may be capable, Dread Tomax. Capable indeed.
Take book from Legacy Chain
That you have dedicated your dark heart to my endevour seems to have forced the Cricle's hand. This will actually help our plan in the long term, but the action they have taken was so blatant that even the pathetic dabblers in the Legacy Chain will have noticed. We must stop them from learning enough to be a threat to our plans. To prevent this, I am sending you to retrieve a book they would need to stop us, for it contains information they would need to find what the Circle has taken. The book will be well guarded by the Legacy Chain's finest. You would be well advised to recruit a gang of extra villains.
The book in question is a translation of the journal of one Padre Henri. It could be quite informative for you to peruse. Taking the book from the Legacy Chain should put an end to their interference in the plan. You will also need to deal with the leader of the investigation. He knows too much already, and must be removed from the game board.
According to Tarikoss, the Legacy Chain should be meeting here to discuss the book and what to do next.
Objective: You found something.
This book is a translation of the Journal of Father Gerard Henri, a French monk and reputed master of mystic powers who worked for the French government in the 17th century. According to entries in the Journal, Henri came to the Rogue Isles in response to tales og a demon-worshipping cult called the Children of Enos. he arrived to find both the Cultists and the garrison sent to fight them wiped out. There are pages missing, but what's left talks at great lengths about the preparations Henri and his cohorts went through to face something the Cultists had summoned from the depths of the netherworld in their desperation. Something Henri felt was too powerful for him to destroy, but could be contained within the mountain. Something called Bat'Zul.
Objective: You have defeated Investigator Toddsworth.
Mission Complete: You got the journal of Padre Henri.
Toddsworth told you I would betray you? Preposterous! I have no plans of the kind. I need your power, your skills, and your willing participation to complete this. I have my plan and I would not dare cross one of your power and demonstrated viciousness. Toddsworth was just making a poor final attempt to insert doubts that woulld stop our plans. And they must be our plans, now, you have earned it. if you have read the Journal, then you already know much. I will do as I can to clarify the rest so that you will understand your next task.
You have proven very useful to me, Dread Tomax.
Discover the Circle's plans for Bat'Zul
It is now time that you learned the truth of this enterprise. I have promised power and the riches of the world to you, but have not told you how this would be achieved. If you've read Henri's Journal, then you probably are beginning to understand, but I will clarify. When Father Henri came to this island, he discovered that the Cultists living here had summoned a great beast of the netherworld in their desperation. It was bound within the volcano, and Henri siezed on this. He bound it tighter, and trapped it within the mountain, where it lay until now. Dr. Aeon's geothermal experiments accidentally began to tap the fiend for power, and began to weaken Henri's seals. Now it approaches freedom, but is still weak enough to be re-bound or threatened with it. I seek to bind this beast, this Bat'Zul, to my will. The Circle seeks the same. And no doubt the Legacy Chain seek to imprison it with the best seals they can manage. With the beast properly bound, not even Lord Recluse will be able to stand against it's power. And that is the power I promise you a share of. But first, we must find out what the Circle has done and prevent them from gaining control of Bat'Zul.
As you are aware, Aeon's power system truly draws it's power from Bat'Zul and the spells imprisoning him. The drop in power could only occur if the Circle has somehow interfered with the spells, or with Bat'Zul. My portal is ready, and I will send you through it to a section of the Circle's hidden city. Discover there what they have done with the fiend we will control.
Oranbega @ Cap au Diable
Perhaps it's the mystical power flowing through this place, but you feel as though a thousand eyes are watching you.
Objective: You found something in one of the books.
These books are written in the strange language often used by the members of the Circle of Thorns. You cannot read it exactly, but it is copiously illustrated with images of the volcano, and of a great demonic beast imprisoned within it. Further illustrations look as if the demon and it's prison has somehow been closed off from the rest of the Volcano with mystic wards.
Objective: You defeated the Librarian.
Mission Complete: You found the information and defeated the Librarian.
You did well to recover the book, but I have bad news. The Circle were also visited by the hero Infernal, who seeks to banish bat'Zul for his own glory. His heroic presence will no doubt enrage the fiend, possibly causing it to break free from its weakened bonds with devastating consequences.
As to the book, it is written in the ancient tongue the Circle's cultists have taken for their own. it's called 'Oranbegan', after the lost city of Oranbega where they've taken residence. Fortunately, I can read it. According to the texts, they did not merely sever the link between Bat'Zul and the Power system, they have actually seperated his prison from the rest of the mountain using power wards. This actually makes our task easier, once we've found a way to breach their barriers. And I know just the place to learn such a technique.
Force a Portal Corporation technician to divulge a method to pierce the barrier around Bat'Zul
The Circle thinks they can buy time to strike a bargain with Bat'Zul by sealing him away while they attempt to bind his will? Unfortunate for them that I have found a way through this obfuscation. The portal in my control could pierce this barrier, but I will need some more information to direct it. The Circle would never betray such information, but it could be possible to force a Portal Corporation technician to divulge the secrets I need to penetrate the barrier around bat'Zul's prison.
The Portal Corporation's technology can not only detect the barrier, but should allow them to circumvent it. Once I have the principles, I can duplicate it magically with the portal I control.
Energy crackles around you as you pass through the portal.
With this information, all is ready. I will prepare the portal. Bat'Zul's power is almost free. We must be done before then. Prepare all of your wickedness and all your fell powers. You will need all that you can muster.
The way is prepared and the Gate is ready. Now is the time to bind bat'Zul's power forevermore. Be warned that it will be difficult. Bat'Zul will not allow himself to be bound easily, and there are many forces opposed to it. The Circle will try to stop you, as will Infernal and the Legacy Chain. Tell me when you are ready.
Listen carefully: Bat'Zul is very strong, but the Circle has already beun to bind his power. He cannoy appear until you have used the 5 altars they have placed within this stolen inferno. Once you have brought him forth, destroy his material form, and I will do what needs to be done from here.
Bat'Zul's demon spawn will try to stop you, but there are other threats. Infernal and the members of the Legacy Chain may have found a path into Bat'Zul's prison. Infernal seeks an answeras well as the end of the beast, but due to his heroic nature, he will be weakened in this place. Do not allow him to stop you. He mustn't try to cage the beast. That is solely your honour.
Bat'Zul's Prison @ Cap au Diable
This place is a small slice of the underworld, forged as a prison for the Demon Bat'Zul
Objective: As he was recalled back to Paragon, Infernal whispered something to you...
Objective: You have activated one of the 5 altars
Objective: There is a horrible echoing in your mind as Bat'Zul's physical form is destroyed.
Even as it's physical form failed, and the demonic beast was forced back under the Volcano to be bound forevermore, it's voice rang in your head like a thunderstorm:
'KNOW THIS: THAT THE ONE YOU CALLED VIRGIL TARIKOSS IS KNOWN TO ME AS TARIKOSS THE VIGILANT, A GUARDIAN OF BALANCE AND AN ALLY OF THE GOOD AND THE JUST. TARIKOSS EXPECTED ME TO TAKE OUT ME WRATH UPON THE ON EWHO BOUND ME BENEATH THE MOUNTAIN AGAIN, AND BIND THAT ONE WITHIN MY PRISON FOR ALL TIME. YOU WERE TO BE HIS SACRIFICE, BUT I SHALL DEFY THESE PLANS! HE MUST FEAR YOU GREATLY, AND SO I SHALL TAKE ME VENGEANCE IN YOUR FREEDOM.'
'GO, AND SEW WICKEDNESS AND DESTRUCTION IN MY WRATH!'
A master of demon binding and summoning from another dimension, Infernal's boundless willpower allows him to control the many fiends he has forced into his service. As a member of the Vindicators, he often assists Numina of the Freedom Phalanx.
|Bat'Zul the Imprisoned [Arch-Villain]|
A demon-lord of the lowest planes of existence, Bat'Zul's immense power has been shackled beneath Cap au Diable for hundreds of years. Should he escape, he could turn all of the Rogue Isles into an inferno of destruction.
Mission Complete: Bat'Zul has been re-imprisoned, but you are still free!
|Binder of Beasts|
Awarded for completing the last mission of the Strike Force
Bat'Zul is imprisoned, yet you return. I admit that I am dissapointed. I was counting on bat'Zul taking his revenge on you. Perhaps it was Infernal's heroic presence that kept the energies in balance. Perhaps the fiend saw through my scheme. It doesn't matter now, I suppose.
Did the fiend tell you? it's all done, and there is no need for my deceptions now. Virgil Tarikoss was a mask for me, for I am called Tarikoss the Vigilant, and I lied to you from the start. The demon Bat'Zul needed to be bound once more, but I feared that anyone with a pure heart or heroic motive would be trapped with the beast for all time. So instead, I went on my own and decided to use someone vile and wicked whom no one woudl miss. Someone like you. The Legacy Chain thought it was too cruel and tried to stop me, but they couldn't understand that it had to be done.
I can do you no further harm, and were you to harm me your part in this matter would be revealed to all. So we are at an impass, and neither of us gets what we truly watned. Take this as a lesson, then: When you choose a life of darkness, you will find no one to trust. But let's not leave on completely grim terms. Consider this: You saved the islands, and possibly the world. I doubt you'll take satisfaction in it, but the achievement is yours all the same.
Goodbye, Dread Tomax
We are done.