Part 9 - The Cult of Rebirth
They emerged from the sewers when they reached some streets that were not buried. They found that part of the city had homes and buildings too small to house giants. Then they happened upon some red skinned lizard creatures who had been recently killed. Amongst the bodies they found one that they were able to keep from dying.
They camped in one of the homes as Kint and Valentine tended to the creature. The others scouted about and based on the artwork they saw, they learned that the lizard creatures were at one time the servants of the giants that inhabited the city.
When the creature regained consciousness, they spoke to it. It spoke a form of Sumerian even further removed than what was spoken in Ekabar. The creature said that the giants that had survived the crashing of the city either left the city, or stayed and eventually went mad. As the giants became even more unreliable, the lizard folk, called Oklu were forced to rebel and fend for themselves.
Recently a new cult had formed among the Oklu, called the Cult of Rebirth. The cult believed that the patron goddess of the city, Kamia would be reborn. They believed that she died when the giants stopped worshipping her, and that is why the city crashed. The problem was that the cult had become really aggressive, killing any Oklu that refused to join the cult.
When asked why the giants went mad, the Oklu said that the city’s water supply had become tainted when creatures called Chual began to infest the water channels.
The Nephilim went out and sought the Cult of Rebirth. They found them and were immediately attacked. The Nephilim slaughtered many of the cultists before the cult leader finally surrendered. The Nephilim convinced him they would help him if he ceased his attacks on the other Oklu. He agreed when he realized they could wipe out his entire following.
He explained that hidden amongst the city was a key that had been split in half that would open the vault at the center of the city. The cult leader believed that the way to Kamia’s rebirth was somewhere in that vault. The cult leader asked that they retrieve the body of the giant that had created the key from a burial vault for them. They would attempt a ritual on it to determine the location of the key’s two halves. The Nephilim agreed.
They were guided to the vault by the Oklu. The vault they first entered proved to be a false chamber. They found the secret entrance the lead to a passage. Once in the passage, they were hit by a flame trap that bathed them in fire. They managed to survive the gauntlet and get to the other side where they disabled the trap.
Beyond was a chamber that contained a coffin, a sword and some armor. They took the sword, but left the armor. They then opened the coffin and lugged the 9 foot tall body back out of the vault.
The cult took the body and attempted to resurrect it through dark magic. The ritual failed to resurrect the body, instead animating nearby statues. A battle ensued that ended with the destruction of the statues but not before many more Oklu cultists died. Most of the cult was now dead, and they were no closer to learning where the keys were.
The survivors informed them about some more intact locations in the city, including where the vault, the water ways, and a place they called the upside down gardens could be found.. It was time to go looking for the keys the old fashioned way.