Moonday, 13th of Nerth, Year 3033
Kvothe, seeking to confuse his charmed allies, uses Foxfire to create an illusion of a forest over the span of the river, encompassing everyone and the weeping willow. Soon the party realizes that the forest is not real, but is unable to see through the illusive terrain.
Korag-Gora, still raging and under the lorelei’s charm, swings at Alonwyn, taking her down and incapacitating her. Lilith manages to break free of the lorelei’s spell. Kvothe taps into Foxfire’s power once again, healing everyone within range.
The lorelei, feeling her control over the group breaking, retreats into the trunk of the weeping willow tree, freeing the rest of the party from her will. Alistair, still lost in the illusive woods, tries burning through the trees with a fireball, but the fireball passes through the spectral illusion and lands harmlessly in the river.
Korag-Gora, no longer under the power of the lorelei and regaining his wits, realizes what has happened and charges for the willow tree after the lorelei. Lilith flies at the willow and uses her sorcery to grow spikes and claws to tear through the tree’s bark and branches. Kvothe lifts the illusion, realizing that his allies are back to themselves again. He conjures an ice knife, sending it flying into the heart of the willow and piercing its bark. Alistair sends a fireball into it, scorching its surface.
Korag-Gora, flying into another rage at being used by the lorelei to hurt his allies, swings his mighty greatsword and slices through the tree’s base, cutting it from its roots. An unearthly wail emanates through the forest, and the lorelei is no more. The fallen willow begins floating downstream, and the party realizes they should jump on and use it to reach Lake Muscarine.
While floating south, Korag-Gora, feeling remorseful for his actions while under the spell of the lorelei, offers a dagger to the party members he attacked, saying that they should return the favor. All of them forgive them, but Lilith gives him a good slash for good measure, which the hulking barbarian barely feels. Alistair manages to quell his thirst for souls, and feels the dull presence of his sworn enemy in the distance.
The further the party travels south, the more aware they become of a steady pulsing sound and vibration, like a disembodied heartbeat, which resonates in their bodies and ears. As time passes, the pulse becomes more and more powerful, and soon the immense figure of Aman Agar, the colossal mushroom cap growing from Lake Muscarine, can be seen above the tree tops. The gigantic mushroom pulses with a dull, reddish glow, a pulse in sync with the thumping heartbeat felt and heard by the party.
As night begins to fall, Lilith uses her light spell on the floating tree, lighting their way. Korag-Gora prays to Arctura, asking for her to help him find his shield, but is discouraged when the goddess does not directly reply to him. Alonwyn suggests that Arctura typically does not respond for such trivial matters, but says a short prayer herself. As she finishes, the missing boats appear before them upon Lake Muscarine, with Barkley and Korag-Gora’s shield atop them, illuminated by a crimson ray of light from the setting sun.
Above them, the impossibly huge parasol of Aman Agar stretches over the lake, casting an immense shadow over everything. The gentle pulsing glow of the titantic fungus, along with the other luminescent fungi around the lake, gives the lake’s surface a magical quality.
The party rows over to the boats, finding that the “bridge-boat” is sinking with Barkley whimpering, standing on the unsubmerged end. Magnus produces some dried meat from his rations, and is able to coax the mastiff into jumping from the sinking boat to the SS Lorelei. The willow log approaches Sphagnalis’s raft, and Korag-Gora leaps to the raft and grabs his beloved shield.
The lake’s placid waters leaves them floating aimlessly, so the party begins rowing across the span of the lake and towards the towering stalk of Aman Agar, looking for signs of an east-flowing stream to follow. Magnus fashions a fishing pole from his pack, and throws it into the murky waters, but doesn’t manage to catch any fish.
After a while, they near the island from which Aman Agar sprouts, but they find that the island is not earthen, but instead part of Aman Agar itself, made of a spongy, fungal material that stretches below the lake. Kvothe notices what appears to be a glowing, fungal reef growing along the bed of the lake near Aman Agar, and dives in in an attempt to harvest some of the strange fungi. After submerging himself in the lake, Kvothe immediately begins to feel nauseous and ill. He struggles his way to the shore of Aman Agar, dragging himself at the foot of the mushroom god and vomiting violently.
Magnus leaps to Kvothe and fashions an antidote from his poisoner’s kit, lessening the effects of the poisonous lake. The party joins them at the foot of Aman Agar, and begin discussing what move to make, as night is falling. Lilith takes the mushroom spores that Alonwyn had collected within Myconopolis, thinking that they could make Kvothe reconnect with the myconids in the meld, and releases them in his face.
The spores send Kvothe into the meld, and he sees what appears to be a circular doorway at the foot of Aman Agar that was not there before. He enters through the gateway, and to the others not affected by the spores, it looks like he disappears into the mushroom stalk without explanation.
Kvothe emerges from the doorway, and finds himself in front of a pristine lake under a clear night sky dotted with stars. Behind him, a colossal redwood tree towers above him, the doorway at the foot of its trunk. The shores of the lake are covered with dark, dense forest.
The rest of the party, concerned over Kvothe’s disappearance, investigates the point at which he vanished, and finds that an invisible door exists there in the surface of the stalk. They peer through and see Kvothe on the other side, and the alternate reality. Lilith explains that this is likely a planar gateway, and that the Feywild, a mirror of their own world, has criss-crossed over with their dimension, creating the Sporest in the material plane.
Magnus and Lilith pass through the gateway, joining Kvothe in the “normal” forest, which is contained within the Feywild dimension, taking a rope through the door, in case it were to close or be compromised. Alonwyn, Korag-Gora, Alistair, and Barkley remain in the Sporest, and the separated parties set up their camps on each side, respectively, and rest.
Treesday, 14th of Nerth, Year 3033
Early next morning, they awaken, fill their waterskins with fresh water from the newly-discovered, mirrored forest lake, and then regroup in the Sporest once again, bidding farewell to the lost forest once part of their world.
The party boards the meager raft and willow log once again, with Lilith’s wings serving as a sail for the raft and Alonwyn and Alistair rowing with large tree branches. After a while, they reach the eastern shore of Lake Muscarine, and disembark. After traversing the shoreline for some time, Kvothe hears the distant sound of a splashing stream.
They eventually come to the stream, which begins as a small waterfall which flows from the lake over an overhang and cascades down a steep, rocky incline. Standing at the top of the waterfall, the party debates on how to best descend, as there is no easy descent. Korag-Gora throws caution to the wind, and uses his shield as a sled, scraping down the rocky waterfall while barely managing to keep his balance. Lilith jumps down but loses her footing, sliding down on her behind and getting scraped up. Magnus and Kvothe climb down carefully, and manage to make it down without any harm. Alistair tries to climb down, but misty steps when he loses his footing. Alonwyn leaps from the top of the cliff, and Korag-Gora attempts to catch her, which injures them both.
Once at the foot of the waterfall, they realize they left Barkley at the top of the incline. Alonwyn climbs back up the incline, grabbing the large mastiff and jumps from the cliff foolhardily with him in her arms, but Lilith casts a feather fall spell so that they land safely in the stream bed.
The party travels down the stream for hours as its winds through the Sporest’s thick growth. After some time, they reach a ridge overlooking a vast swath of forest below. The stream flows down the ridge and collects in a pool which splits further into rivulets which disappear into sponge-like cavern openings in the terrain. The largest stream flows from the pool over the edge of a gaping, jagged ravine, a jarring sight which stretches before them – the Maw.
The Maw’s cliffs are cracked and broken, festooned with huge, sharp rock formations that seem to have grown out of the cliffs like teeth, and overgrown with foliage and fungi, giving it the appearance of a monstrous venus fly trap or a sickly, snarling mouth. Beyond the opening of the ravine, naught can be seen but darkness, and the dim glow of luminescent fungi.
Kvothe uses his ability to commune with nature to sense for the Bleeding Tooth, and is able to feel its presence emanating from the menacing depths of the Maw.