The party didn’t waste any time after taking care of Bayrd, and went on a shopping spree to quickly spend as much of their new riches as possible. Then they did some quick scrying, some quick research on local plagues, and tracked down Inropam. Cheryl knew that Inropam would definitely be where an outbreak of something lethal was spreading, and it didn’t take long for her to find an illness in Munich, Germany that fit Inropam’s M.O. perfectly.
The party made their way there quickly, and found a large hospital that was serving as the center of Munich’s attempts to contain the plague. A nurse named Thom showed them to the floor with the sickest patients, and asked Cheryl to use some of her healing magic to cure their diseases. She couldn’t, because she forgot to plan ahead and set Cure Disease spells when setting out to neutralize a fucking Disease Devil, but quickly agreed that she would be happy to set some the next day and start curing people then. Thom then led the party to a newly-arrived disease specialist, whom Cheryl immediately recognized as none other than Inropam.
Cheryl had planned ahead, and gotten Donavin to prepare a special gem which could cast the spell Trap the Soul. Inropam, unlike most demons or devils or extraplanar creatures, continued to be reincarnated in the material plane each time he died, instead of returning to his native plane. This was the reason why the Lawful Good plane’s enforcers had never been able to capture him. Every time they did, he simply died and returned to the mortal world.
Cheryl wished to give her booby-trapped soul gem to Inropam as a gift, but Inropam refused it. Repeatedly. He simply did not want the gem. No, seriously. He wanted Cheryl to stop trying to give it to him. Okay, fine, he didn’t trust Cheryl, that’s why. He wasn’t stupid.
The party stayed the night at the hospital, and Donavin came down with the plague. He didn’t get too far gone, but he did catch it. Sucked to be him, I guess. He was cured the next morning, so no harm done. In the morning, Cheryl and the party discovered that Inropam had fled the hospital. The party took to the sky in their airship and followed his most likely path, quickly finding him trying to escape on horseback. Donavin transformed into a dragon and flew the party down to confront Inropam. Inropam began coughing up blood and tried to talk to the party for a few moments, but Cheryl wasn’t having it and used the trigger word on the gem to bind Inropam’s soul. He failed the save, and, one round away from death, was trapped in the gem.
The party immediately planeshifted to the Lawful Good plane and presented the gem to Mikoto‘s secretary. Mikoto brought the party into her office and told them that she had pulled the strings she could, and gotten them an appointment to speak with the Lawful Good Lord. They were then escorted to yet another office, this one on the top floor. Inside, the Lord himself sat at a gigantic desk of the finest wood the party had ever seen, wearing a white suit so pristine it was nearly blinding. Raziel pointed out the similarity of the Lord’s suit to the one he was wearing under his armor, and the Lord deliberately ignored it, then mumbled that his suit was way better.
He agreed to sign the Judge’s contract, but wanted a contract of his own to be signed as well. Under the terms of his contract, the party themselves would become responsible for keeping extraplanar creatures from the aligned planes out of the mortal plane, and, should they fail in their duty or become unable to perform their duty (by dying, for example), the deal would be off and he would send his employees to the mortal realm once more. The party argued that they at least needed a grace period for finding replacements if they died, and the Lord acquiesced. The time period was kept vague in the discussions, and nobody bothered to read the fine print on the contract to see if the Lord had picked, like, ten seconds, or ten days, or had left it vague.
The contract was signed, and so the party had everything that they needed for the Judge.
I don’t remember if they actually tried to go to the True Neutral plane or not, but seeing as they weren’t supposed to have gone there the first time, I’m going to say that even if they did, it’s now retconned so that they didn’t. Instead, they…were back at Vardiss’s manor when an emissary of the Judge appeared. That’s what we’re going with. Everybody has to accept it.
The emissary told the party that the barriers between planes would be strengthened, as agreed, forcing the Lords of the other planes and all of the creatures of those planes from ever returning to the material plane. Which should have meant that the Lawful Good Lord’s agreement to stay out only under certain conditions was a lot of horseshit, but who knows, maybe he knew something that the Judge didn’t.
The barriers were set to go up in seven days. The emissary warned the party that it was very likely that the Chaotic Evil Lord and the Chaotic Good Lord would make personal appearances in the material plane right before the barriers went up, to try to snuff out the party, and then each other. Whichever of them won would then have uncontested rule over the world.
The emissary left, and the party wondered what they could do about this. When Balmorn and Thomas (not to be confused with Thom) turned out to have little information to share, they decided to visit the Kings of Chaos and see if they knew anything about the other Chaotic Lords. They did, having fought and been killed by each of them.
The Chaotic Evil Lord was the personification of Wrath, they said, and was a monstrous multi-armed brute who could summon swarms of minor undead at a time. His personal specialty, however, was that he could rage like a barbarian, and each round that he raged he would become stronger and tougher. He had no upper limit to how strong and tough he could become, but as soon as he stopped raging, his body would return to its baseline and he would need to start over if he wanted to get back to the strength he’d just given up by calming down. The Kings were able to put up a pretty good fight and keep the undead he summoned at bay, but eventually his strength was so great that he simply broke them apart with his bare hands.
The Chaotic Good Lord, on the other hand, was a powerful wizard as well as being a winged archer who relied more on summoning strong celestials to his side to help him overwhelm his foes with a small army with arrows and divine spells. Although less physically tough, the Kings had a hard time getting to him to do any real damage, and were outmatched by his range and speed.
The party decided that they would spend the next seven days training and preparing themselves by finding any ways to power up that they could. The first thing they chose to do was to have Donavin find Vicnal and learn the secret of full dragon transformation.