I pretended to sip my beer, smiling and nodding along with the farcical tale being told by one of the humans at my table. I took my cues for when to laugh or groan from the other patrons listening, but I wasn’t really paying attention. Out of the corner of my eye, I was watching the human at the bar, drinking from a tankard unlike any of the cheap mugs used by the tavern. I was certain the tankard was what the amulet led me to.
When I reached Manu’s place, I found it deserted and ransacked. Poking through the debris, I noticed an illusion covering a trapdoor. Opening it revealed a small cubbyhole, in which I found the amulet. It looked just like my old Amulet of the Planes, but the only power it had appeared to be a locating spell.
Following the amulet brought me to this dive, and the man with the tankard. I had been watching for some time when a human and a dwarf walked up to him and began asking questions. If the human could be believed, Clanggedin Himself gave him the tankard. It also seemed like the dwarves were in an uproar because the clerics of Clanggedin lost their powers. The other human turned out to be a druid, and said Clanggedin was missing, which was upsetting the balance of nature.
I don’t think much of the clergy, but Clanggedin did all right by me, and this had a “divine intervention” kind of feel to it, so I decided to roll with it. I went over and said, “I met Clanggedin once too.” The first human was naturally suspicious of strangers, but I showed him my amulet. We decided to go meet with a local cleric to see how matters stand.
When we met the dwarven cleric of Clanggedin, he told us how his powers no longer worked. We had him hold the tankard and try a small spell and it worked, but seemed to drain the aura from the tankard. I touched the amulet and the tankard together, and the power flowed out of the tankard into the amulet. The amulet still would not transport us to the planes, but it gained some powers of protection. The tankard no longer had any magic, but inside was a gem.
The gem suppressed wild magic, and caused magic items to glow with a white light. So much for concealing my hidden tricks, I was glowing like the sun. We headed back out to gather more information, me staying well back, out of range of the gem’s power, when a portal appeared above us.
A dragon flew out of it and two more portals appeared; one carried the dragon away again, but through the other charged a horde of crystalline trolls. I set up a hypnotic pattern to slow them down while my new companions charged into battle. I got lucky, and pulled a rhinoceros from my bag of tricks, which charged the trolls. We made quick work of the trolls, but I could already tell, this is no longer a simple rescue mission.