The Summer Heroes considered the best way to use their three wishes, and settled on wishing for the following:
- knowledge of how to defeat the demon gargoyle (answer: using artifacts of great power while it is not in its protected state)
- knowledge of how to get to the Temple in Varcrist (answer: through the remaining portal in an adjacent chamber)
- that Mirth’s soul be immediately transported to the Mindscape
Mirth granted the first two wishes, invoked the favor that the Summer Heroes owed, nominated Abajeet as the replacement Guardian, and disappeared, leaving the gnomish skin to collapse to the ground, empty.
While Mina and Abajeet had a tearful goodbye, the rest of the Summer Heroes tried to notify Aryeon of the latest developments. They narrowly avoided being eaten by the Primal magma Dragon—the Guardian of Aryeon’s Temple—and returned.
Exploring Abajeet’s new domain revealed only one other active portal and 1,000 Sorian soldiers—the legendary Vanished Legion. Leaving Abajeet to explain their situation, they collected the items on Mirth’s body and left for Varcrist.
Varcrist’s Temple was empty (as best they could tell) but still functioning. Exploring Varcrist revealed signs of orcish occupation, as well as an opportunity to spy on Glaysa communicating with Mellitus. They learned that she is the source of the plague statues, and that she has more coming.
Following the direction of the rings from Elegabalor’s horde, they found themselves in the Garden of Light. The rings pointed to one of the pieces of art, which contained the first piece of the Staff of Prophecy. Erlindar attempted to find a way to the rest of Varcrist by exiting through the damaged skylights, but the mountainside would be too treacherous and lengthy of a journey, though the scenario was beautiful. Digging out a collapsed tunnel, they moved onward into Varcrist.
After marveling at the sight of the lost city, they spied Krina and a group of orcs and golems leading some chained prisoners, Erlindar’s Uncle Jojen among them. Glaysa and her two Hell Hounds teleported in, handed Krina three of the statues, and dismissed Krina’s (apparently repeated) concerns about how much trouble the Summer Heroes could cause if not dealt with. Leaving one of her Hell Hounds behind to watch over the prisoners, Glaysa and the other left.
The Summer Heroes launched an ambush, dispatching all of their foes except Krina. Four prisoners died, and several of the Summer Heroes almost did as well. Cursing their interference, but expressing glee that killing the Hell Hound would bring Glaysa down on them, she teleported away.