Again asking Devon to run my place, I began recruiting heroes. Aggie and Trevor were willing to help again, and I found another man too: Gaspar of the Pomarj, brave elven paladin. When he came through town on his white horse, I knew he was the man for the job. I immediately recruited him, finding that he was also seeking the man responsible for these unnatural rains. Us four set out across the flooded deserts, intent on speaking with the wizards once more, and finding out a way to stop Dark Lord Tabber. We were met at the edge of the deserts by Aramil; a headstrong barbarian of these regions who offered to aid us in slaying the wizardly, Tabber, as he hated magic with a passion. We soon got a boat together and sailed forth. There we met a rather odd fellow: a tiny Halfling by the name of Huerney White-Eye, or Huey, as I called him. He was very open with us: he was exiled from his town for stealing. Naturally, I didn’t care. I respected the kid for his guts. The others didn’t like it, but I figured he could be at least useful, so we took him along. It was a long and soggy journey crossing the new desert/ocean, but after nearly a month our group arrived at The Misspoken Passage, mountain city of wizards, seeing if they had any clue as to where this Tabber was and how we could defeat him. There we had to speak with the city council, to discuss our matters with the elders. We learned that a local druid named Malpankton was here studying the strange rains and other odd occurrences, dwelling underground with his band of gnomes. Supposedly he had some answers for us. We were allowed to see him, and with us came a rather unexpected guest: Frederick Tabber, the ?son? of King Jacob. Supposedly, he was our ally on this one, and supposedly he wanted to help us. I never trusted him, and thus I made sure to keep an eye on the bastard. We descended into the mines of the city, navigating several rooms of traps and monsters before reaching an intersection. It was there that Tabber betrayed us, as was expected. While the other party members descended down into a pit to investigate, Freddie did his work. He laughed and taunted, telling us the story of how he had marched into Andronia, destroyed the city with his orc hordes, then murdered King Phelps. He used magic to put up a wall of flames, then tried to run off and find Malplankton himself. Trevor immediately leapt through, and on the other side Freddie was waiting. With a lethal combo of attacks, Tabber stabbed Trevor, threw him through the wall of fire, where he slid down the pit and into a pool of water, to finally be devoured by a gigantic worm. I refused to let Fred escape. I drank a potion of invisibility, then leapt through the wall, where I managed to pursue Freddie until I saw him leaving town. At the city, I warned the leaders about Tiber’s treacherous actions. They immediately assigned a man to capture him. That man was Latheric, who many of you might know as the embodiment of all goodness. At the time he was hardly that. Latheric was a greedy, selfish, power-hungry and angry man. Naturally, I liked him. The two of us searched for some time in town before realizing that Tabber wasn’t coming back. Seeing that people were onto him, he had clearly fled back to his home. Soon enough, the two of us were joined again by Huey, who decided to come back out of the caverns early to see if I was alive. The others were busy talking to the druid. I decided to explore the city a bit. Looking through a shop, I found and bought an interesting item: an amulet that let me see invisible people. Soon after putting it on, I went to the local tavern. Immediately, I spotted someone, a little Halfling fellow, trying to rob me, invisible nonetheless. His name was Bigby, and he was more than surprised that I had seen him. I immediately took his ring, the source of his power and let the bugger go. I never saw him again, but his ring was a rather interesting thing. It let one turn invisible; without limits. With it, I could never be seen again. I could sneak up to any man, learn any information, backstab a master assassin, or outwit a dragon. It was an artifact of great and wondrous power, though at the time I only thought it was a nice trinket. Eventually, I met up with Gaspar and the others, along with Malplankton. The druid told us that he might have an answer to beating Tabber, who according to the ancient tradition, had formerly been a druid, back before he traded his humanity for undead power. He told us to come with him to a far northern town where supposedly his master awaited. Latheric immediately turned himself into a huge red dragon, to help fly us there. Aramil didn’t like this at all. The barbarian attacked, nearly killing Latheric before the rest of us pulled him off. For the remainder of the journey, the two would be suspicious of one another, though it never again resulted in violence.
From then on, we journeyed into the cold lands of the north, through pine-covered forests where we battled a traitorous druid turned werewolf, to a pristine lake where Gaspar discovered his legendary Holy Sword and famous armor. We visited a far north city of druids and rangers, now lost forever, where we finally spoke with Malplankton and his friend, the wizard Joseph. There they told us much of our enemy; how he was an ancient druid who had betrayed his earth, forsaken his duties in exchange for power and glory. Using a crystal staff of great power, he had drained the land of its life and made himself into an undead horror. He took the identity of King Jacob Tabber, and over the years had gathered a clan of similarly minded madmen to join him in his extra-planar home. Supposedly, he had been trapped for years, his powers limited by a good gnome who had given his life to stop the lich. Now he was back, and he wanted to conquer the world once more. I certainly wasn’t going to let him, however. I didn’t really know why, but something from my years in Andronia had made me care. I felt responsible for what Tabber did. I knew that me and my party were the only ones who could stop him. Thus, we headed out, taking to the skies on Griffon mounts, headed to the lands where we had first unleashed Tabber, knowing that his legendary crystal staff was somewhere far below the ground here. We landed, seeing a huge and twisted tree; the towering lair of the lich Jacob Tabber, an abomination that sucked the life from the land itself.
We soon discovered an orc-guarded cave, and below it the entrance to a vast gnomish city. Though the inhabitants were eccentric, they were marginally helpful. They directed us to a crystal staff that was held by a metal statue in a fountain. As we went to take it, we were immediately assaulted by an invader: Fred Tabber. After an epic battle, we brought him down, slaying him. The staff in hand, we marched towards Jacob’s tree, as Latheric tried getting used to using the wizardly item. We entered the demonic fortress of the tree, fighting through several devious apprentices before reaching the inner sanctum of the lich himself, a gigantic room covered in all manner of gems and crystals. There we fought Tabber, and though our weak weapons could not slay him, neither did he have the skill to kill us. As we hacked away at his neck, his chest and his arms, he eventually began to fall apart. A coward at heart, Tabber ran, leaping through a portal created by magic, leading back to his unwholesome home world. Only Aramil followed, and we never heard from him again. I can only guess what happened to that brave warrior; but most likely his soul has long since been eaten by some foul devil from hell. Latheric closed the portal using the crystal staff (which had proven ridiculously useless in the battle, despite our wizard’s numerous attempts at using it). We rested for an hour, and I managed to collect as many of the gems as I could. Our enemy was beaten. His plan was ruined. We were heroes, of a sort. As we went outside, however, we witnessed the devastation Latheric’s attempted use of the staff had caused; all the world, at least in this region, was shattered; a lifeless and hellish wasteland. Seeing what had been caused by the staff, we forced Latheric to give it up, and he grudgingly did so. At first Aggie wanted to take it, but after our work was done he decided to return home to the Pomarj, and so I was left with duty of guarding the artifact. Still a power-hungry young man, Latheric occasionally tried getting Tabber’s staff from me, but happy to say, he never succeeded.