Content of the article: "A Devilish Deal"
Obligatory warning: if your name is Cicero, Twiliq, Morgan, or Selene, turn back now.
This is a long one, so TLDR: a wizard trapped a daughter of my warlock's Archfey patron using power borrowed from a fiendish pact. Need ideas on bringing him into the game, plus possible ways to undo Imprisonment. Low level party in an urban environment.
The long version: I'm DM'ing Waterdeep: Dragon Heist as my first campaign, close to 30 sessions in. I will warn of spoilers where relevant but most of this is homebrew. My party consists of an Eldritch Knight, Archfey Warlock, Whisper Bard, and Spore Druid. I spent a lot of time working with them on character creation; partly because we're all new to the game and partly to incorporate as much of their backstory and flavor as I can.
The Eldritch Knight decided on the Haunted One background and penned a scene where his character watched his pupil vanish into a magic circle, leaving behind only a skeletal hand. Turns out the circle was a ritual to beg favor of the devil Zariel. The pupil bit off more than he could chew, paid the price, and Eldritch Knight unintentionally reaped the gain (cursed sword). He'd been trying to figure out what the circle meant ever since, and did so in-game after asking the right people.
Meanwhile our warlock tells me she wants her patron to have a daughter trapped in some jewelry that is her job to free. So I pen up a story of the fey daughter taking interest in a wizard, then moving on after a short (to an immortal creature) while. Wizard loses his cool, goes to any lengths to "have her back." Not long ago, the Warlock learned that when her patron had the wizard's home investigated after the daughter's disappearance, they found a statue of the daughter (likeness required by Imprisonment spell) and a ritual circle similar to what Eldritch Knight has been asking about. Enter fiends – this is where I need help. More details below.
At this point, Eldritch Knight has had a few encounters with Zariel and seen his pupil transforming into a Bone Devil. I sprinkled some cultist encounters in, and eventually our Whisper Bard stepped into a sacrificial circle two turns before the ritual was completed. He was sacrificed to Belial, and we closed the session there. We talked about it, and his character is widely loved, so next session sees the surviving PCs make a deal with Zariel to rescue him from Belial. As it turns out, Zariel is gunning for Belial's seat on the 2nd level of Hell and is willing to cross him if the players shut down an important ritual devoted to him.
SPOILER FOR WATERDEEP AHEAD: The Cassalanters are a powerful noble family secretly worshipping devils, and a potential primary antagonist of the campaign. Their ritual will be party's target, but the PCs are just starting to get clues that the Cassalanters are bad news.
So my Fighter and Bard are (as characters) unwillingly linked to Zariel, I have NPCs linked to Belial, and I've set the two Devils against one another. I haven't yet clarified if the wizard was consorting with Zariel or Belial, so I have a lot of flexibility on how to introduce him to the game.
It makes sense to me that the wizard would be turned to a (bearded?) Devil by now, but I'd like to mix things up if someone has a good idea. I could have him working for the nobles under Belial, or I could have him help the party under Zariel, or anything in between. Right now my standing idea for breaking the Imprisonment spell is to immerse the gem containing the fey in the wizard's blood, whatever his current form, but please share any creative solutions you've seen or thought of. Finally, I'm also looking for neat ideas on what my Warlock could learn about the wizard with some research in the city. That's how she wants to spend her downtime while we're on break, so thanks for any help!
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