The group continued through the tomb of the Dragonborn Emperor, and they were contacted by Nine/Sharaea. She told them that Illvanuel had helped her to get in contact with them, and that Illvanuel had scried the location of another gem nearby. She asked the group if they could use the airship to find it. They agreed, and she ceased the communication.
The group heard a voice inside their minds, a psionic presence. It told Zola and Fern that it had frozen their friend’s minds. They looked around and noticed that the rest of the party had stopped moving completely. The voice told them that they alone would be insufficient to take the gem from it.
After some deliberation, Fern and Zola decided to continue onward until they could find the power that froze their friends and defeat it.
The pair made their way through the second level of the tomb, evading traps and finding treasures. They found stairs that led downward and took them. On the third level of the tomb, they found a large number of rats. The rats had exposed brains, and they began to run towards one another, forming into a swarm. The swarm of rats seemed to possess a new sentience that wasn’t there before, and it spoke to them telepathically. It named itself Strength-in-numbers It told them to leave, for it served Vecna and would not let them take the gem. The rats fought them using powerful spells. After a long fight, the rats fled, scattering and running into small holes in the walls.
The group noticed a crack in the wall and Zola knocked down part of the wall, revealing a small room with a black gem sitting upon a table. Underneath the gem was a small card with a gem on it.
Activating the gem card gave the wielder of the card visions. They saw a vision of a bustling city filled with numerous different races (Sigil), a city of fire and rock with metal buildings (the City of Brass) and a mountain range back in Atlea that Fern identified as The Ethsmas Mountains.
With the gem, the two travelled back up the levels to find their friends had recovered, not remembering anything about the time they were frozen in place.
Returning to the surface, the group found that the airship was missing, but soon it was visible some distance away.
As it flew towards them, they saw Nine/Sharaea and Alathar/Hayne flying down on the magical disks, eager to greet them. The two of them informed the party that the Prince of Frost had tracked them down, stealing Alathar/Hayne away and telling Nine/Sharaea he would come for her next. Nine/Sharaea did not know what to do and in desperation, called for assistance from devils. Dispater came to her aid, granting her incredible power. With this power she pursued the Prince of Frost and ended his life, retrieving Alathar/Hayne. She told the party that he power would not last much longer, but she could return them to Hestavar. Alathar/Hayne swore to Nine/Sharaea that together they would have to find a way to undo her deal with Dispater.
In the city of Hestavar again, the group was greeted by an angel named Hanael. He told them that with their gem, there were now a total of three accounted for. He told them that since they were able to retrieve the gem so quickly, he would like to place them in charge of one of the operations to retrieve them. The celestials had worked together to create a demiplane known as Lyraldanis and built a fortress there that would serve to house the gems, keeping them safe. He told the party they would be placed in charge of all of the agents that worked there, all of them being experts in their fields.
The party informed Hanael that they were to travel to Sigil next. He asked them to ensure they were equipped well before they left and gave them access to the armoury.