Critical Recap: Critical Role C3E85 “Intense Interrogations”

Written by on February 21, 2024

Hello! Welcome to Critical Recap! I’m Dani Carr, the Critical Role Lore Keeper. Let’s dive into our recap of Critical Role Campaign 3 Episode 85 Intense Interrogations!


Bells Hells gather the bodies of the three Ruby Vanguard members they knocked unconscious, which includes the Reiloran Willmaster Edmuda, and put them in the portable hole. Some hide in a small basement when other Vanguard members come to investigate the noise. Surprisingly, it is Evon Hytroga, owner of the Twilight Mirror Museum, who arrives at the door. Hytroga is a Ruby Vanguard member and was in the newly arrived caravan. Imogen convinces him to let Bells Hells join the caravan and claims that the Willmaster left after the stampede.

The Ruby Vanguard members leave and the group decides to begin interrogating their captives. Ashton opens the hole and their mind is immediately taken over by the Willmaster. Ashton attacks Imogen and everyone scrambles to break him from the psychic hold. Closing the hole prevents the Willmaster’s influence from coming through, ending the attacks, and a hit from Orym allows Ashton to break through the control.

They open the hole more strategically, with Ashton knocking the Willmaster out. Chetney ties up and blindfolds the captives and Imogen notices that an even brighter shimmering red tether than the one she shares with Fearne connects her to the Exaltant teenager. Orym puts on the harness, or Quintessence Array, and makes the Willmaster touch it for one minute, giving Orym the ability to cast dominate person once before his next long rest.


Imogen gets the Willmaster talking, though the Reiloran has to remember how to speak with her actual mouth instead of psychically. When the Willmaster proves difficult to open up, Orym uses dominate person, forcing her to talk more in-depth about the Imperium’s plans. Predathos wants to be woken up—it wants to feast. When the gods are gone, Exandria will be theirs. She is cagey about their plans for the Exandrians, saying that once the Reilorans carve their place, they will talk more. Some wish to live in harmony and others know of the potential for violence.

The Imperium needs Predathos to awaken before coming to Exandria, despite the presence of the Bloody Bridge. The strength of Exandria lies in divinity. When the gods are gone, the playing ground will even out. Dominate person fades before the Willmaster can tell them what the final key is to release Predathos. She tells Imogen that she is walking the path as expected and will know in time. They return the Willmaster to the portable hole and bring out the teen Exaltant.

Imogen speaks gently to the teenager, Petrov Godo, who is a new recruit sent with the caravan. His dreams called him to Marquet, where he was told he was following his destiny. He was brought to the Malleus Key and built a kinship with the Reilorans. He was to be brought to the Weavemind for Exaltation so he could learn to control his powers. Imogen claims that her mother, Liliana, told her the Willmaster was betraying them and they had to stop her. Petrov is relieved that they’re all part of the Vanguard and promises not to tell anyone else. They convince the other captive, a half-orc named Verdo who is not Ruidusborn, of the same story.


Bells Hells discuss using the harness again, but worry about its cumulative chance of breaking with repeated daily uses. Fearne is concerned about using the harness to kill people, wondering how such usage makes them any better than Ludinus Da’leth himself. Chetney uses Grim Psychometry on the harness: he takes the place of Ludinus, standing in a tower and wearing the Quintessence Array while servants mill. A beautiful fey air nymph with butterfly wings hangs in chains.

Chetney-as-Ludinus pages through a book and feels a sense of hunger. He approaches the nymph and backs into them. He can feel the screams of the nymph as their life force is plucked and funneled into his neck. Chetney returns to himself, still hearing that silent scream. Before making a decision about the Quintessence Array, they send Petrov and Verdo back to the caravan. Fearne and FCG accompany them for safety and to scope out the caravan itself. As they approach, however, they immediately spot Otohan Thull talking with a Vanguard member.


Fearne turns around, claiming to have forgotten her purse. FCG casts Misty Step into the red brush. Unfortunately, Otohan has already seen them. They try to walk away, but she jumps in front of them, where she holds them at swordpoint. FCG claims they are here to deliver a message from Imogen, saying that she wants to arrange a meeting and that she’s far away. Otohan reveals that she felt where Imogen was and that’s why she came to Razora.

Otohan realizes that Fearne is the one that ‘he’ spoke about, though it is not clear who she is referring to. She can’t harm Fearne and speaks of her importance, but their plan does not require FCG. She attacks him and Fearne tries to stop the assault by saying that Imogen is in the capital city of Kreviris. FCG mentally tells the party to run, as Otohan has found them. FCG casts banishment on himself and Fearne, sending them to a gray demiplane for a minute.

Bells Hells receive FCG’s message and begin to turn into mist, along with Fearne and FCG on another plane. Laudna, however, doesn’t want the Willmaster to be wasted and casts hunger of the shadow. Delilah’s presence fills her spirit and Laudna momentarily pities the Willmaster, but the hunger overpowers her. Laudna says that the Willmaster’s power should have been Laudna’s and not gone to ‘the halfling’. The Willmaster dies and Delilah praises Laudna.


Everyone transforms into mist and leaves Elder Barthie’s home. Fearne and FCG successfully transform, but they appear in the same spot they left and are attacked by two of Otohan’s echoes. They zoom into the sky, with Otohan leaping after them, but their mist speed outpaces her and allows Bells Hells to escape. Imogen realizes that her delving into Predathos is likely what revealed her location to Otohan. They travel for an hour and see a dust storm approaching in the distance. They hide in a cliff cleft and decide to explore the interior of the cliff.

They find an underground river, as well as the branches of trees that resemble capillaries. A tunnel opens into a chamber that resembles the inside of a geode, with sharp-textured walls. They drop their mist form and Fearne casts water breathing, allowing them to swim in the river and follow its current. They follow it to a cliff face, where above sits a partially crumbled, ancient elven temple. They explore this frozen place, realizing it hasn’t been seen in a very long time.

Laudna finds an enchanted garden with living plants, as well as numerous bones fossilized in the walls representing dozens upon dozens of people. Chetney’s Grim Psychometry catches only feelings and images of a blue sky going red. They discover goodberries still growing on a bush and an elven doll that Laudna takes. They track the source of the water, which is pouring out from a spout in the still-climbing cliff face.


Fearne decides to wildshape into a leaf sheep sea slug to go through the spout and see where the water is coming from. She swims through the water and against the current before breaking past it and floating in calm water. She sees light above and swims towards it, where she breaks the surface of the water.

She finds herself in a large lake, surrounded by trees with a gray sky above. Fearne is no longer on Ruidus – but where is she?

That is it for Episode 85 of Critical Role!


  • Back door to Ruidus! Back door to Ruidus! BACK! DOOR! TO! RUIDUS!
  • Hey Laudna, uh, how ya doin, girl? You doin okay? Love to see a queen accessing her power but worried about the ramifications of that power on the queen’s soul!
  • Otohan Go Away Forever Challenge!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Evon Hytroga was the absolute last living person I expected on the other side of that door but it also makes perfect sense somehow. Who’s watching your museum, dude?!

Catch Episode 86 on Thursday, February 22nd at 7pm Pacific on and on or a week later on our podcast. Is it Thursday yet?

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