Critical Recap: Critical Role Campaign 2 So Far: E27 – E49
Written by Dani on June 30, 2020
Hello! Welcome to Critical Recap! In honor of the return of Critical Role and Episode 100 this Thursday, I (Dani Carr, your CR Chronicler) will be distilling all 99 episodes of Campaign 2 into four digestible recaps! Join me in recounting the exploits of the Mighty Nein (so far) with this look at Episodes 27-49!
The remaining members of the Mighty Nein (Beau, Caleb and Nott) and their new ally Keg bury the body of Mollymauk Tealeaf, leaving his colorful coat as a grave marker. Caleb and Beau stand firm on wanting to rescue Jester, Fjord, & Yasha and Beau is determined to live her life inspired by Molly’s declaration that he left every town better than he found it.
As they prepare to leave, they meet a firbolg druid, Nila, of the Guiato Clan, whose partner and son were also kidnapped by the Iron Shepherds. They arrive in Shadycreek Run and make contact with Ophelia Mardun, a tiefling woman running one of the Run’s foremost families. She wants to kill the Iron Shepherds in order to disrupt the Jagentoth family, so the Nein’s task for the Gentleman of helping Ophelia lines up with their goal of rescue and revenge.
They visit a magical hermit in the Savalirwood on Ophelia’s suggestion of locating help or allies. This is Caduceus Clay, a firbolg grave cleric of the Wildmother whose home in the Blooming Grove (a gravesite) is the last stand against the magical corruption eating away at the forest. His large family has already left to uncover the mystery of the decay and he is the last one protecting the Blooming Grove. Caduceus agrees to come with them, as the Wildmother has been hinting that he will need to join with others to find his destiny in the east.
They infiltrate the Sour Nest by disguising themselves as guards, killing a couple Shepherds before finding a torture chamber and some cages. Nila finds her partner and son, freeing them. The others urge Nila to take her son to safety. She thanks the Nein for their help and promises Caduceus to look after the Blooming Grove in his stead.
Despite losing one ally, they rapidly gain another when it is revealed that Shakäste has also been kidnapped and is in the process of breaking himself out. Despite some traps, the group manages to kill the other members of the Iron Shepherds while facing down Lorenzo in his true Oni form. A hard battle ensues, but the Nein achieve their full revenge when Caleb kills the fleeing Lorenzo and they find their friends safe and sound in the other dungeons.
After searching the Sour Nest and spending the night there (a night Beau and Keg spend together before Keg leaves), they return to Ophelia Mardun and begin their final task of escorting her to Zadash. Along the way, they stop at Molly’s gravesite, where Fjord and Jester say their goodbyes. A heartbroken Yasha leaves the group, saying she’ll find them later.
The Nein return to Zadash and successfully bring Ophelia to the pleased Gentleman. At Fjord’s request, they decide to follow a lead in a letter they found in the Sour Nest: a woman named Avantika wrote to Lorenzo, asking him to retrieve an item (the Cloven Crystal) and to deliver it to a man named Marius LePual in the Wayfarer’s Cove. That item bears a resemblance to the orb that Fjord absorbed under his patron’s influence. Fjord wants to go back to the Menagerie Coast and look for a former crewmate named Sabian, who is responsible for the explosion of their ship.
Heading south, they pay off Gustave’s debt in honor of Molly and purchase an owl (Professor Thaddeus), a blink dog (Nugget), and a crimson weasel (Sprinkle). Finally, they arrive in Nicodranas, where the party is introduced to the ocean and to Jester’s mother, Marion Lavorre – the Ruby of the Sea. Marion tells them about a possessive client that has been giving her trouble, Algar, and the Nein promise to look into it. When Jester tells her about the Gentleman, Marion is taken aback, as his description matches that of Jester’s father – Babenon Dosal.
Rejoined by Yasha, the Nein head to the underwater Sluice Weave, confronting Algar and freeing a marid, Xundi, from its enslavement powering Nicodranas. They frame Algar for Xundi’s release and demand he leave the city. Later, they attempt to spy on Marius LePual, but end up causing a fiery battle at the docks, accidentally kidnapping Marius and stealing a ship, The Mist.
THE CHOSEN OF UK’OTOA (UK’OTOA UK’OTOA)
Now steering a stolen vessel and feeling guilty about their actions on the docks, the Nein rename the ship The Mistake and dock in the Open Quay, hiring a crew. Caduceus is shaken by the last few days but Jester comforts him. Fjord christens himself Captain Tusktooth, with Beau as first mate, and they sail to Inkclaw Reef, where they meet Avantika and are brought aboard her ship, the Squalleater. Fjord learns that they are both the chosen of Uk’otoa – Fjord’s patron.
Uk’otoa is a leviathan, created by Zehir. He angered his creator with his ambition and was sealed away under the sea. Avantika seeks to restore his three temples with the three Cloven Crystals (of which she has one and Fjord has one) and break his chains. Fjord goes along with her, still haunted by dreams of Uk’otoa promising power. The Nein and Avantika reach the dangerous island of Urukayxl. They traverse the temple’s perils, but it is Avantika who places her orb first, breaking the seal and gaining the ability to control water. The temple rapidly fills with water and they nearly drown, causing Fjord to kiss Jester to give her his air, and the party makes it out alive.
Back on the ship, the Nein discuss the temple murals, depicting three godlike creatures – a leviathan with many eyes, a purple phoenix, and a great worm. Fjord swears that he has no intention of releasing Uk’otoa, preferring his life with the Nein. They urge him to continue playing along with Avantika in order to get as much information as possible.
Privately, Avantika tells Fjord that Vandran was the former chosen she had known previously, but that he abandoned her and took his Cloven Crystal with him. They map out the site of Fjord’s shipwreck and the two sleep together. They sail to Darktow, an island of pirates known as The Revelry, and meet the Plank King, whose only law is to cause no trouble among pirates.
Jester and Nott ransack Avantika’s quarters, stealing her coded journal. Caleb deciphers it, finding entries plotting against the Plank King. Avantika confronts the group and a firefight breaks out. Beau, in a show of patience, gets the book to the Plank King, who kills Avantika and banishes the Nein, giving them the Squalleater in its current, battleworn shape. Renaming it to the Balleater, they sail to Fjord’s shipwreck, which leads them to the lair of a sea witch, Dashilla, who had stolen the orb. They steal it back and Fjord absorbs the third Cloven Crystal (his second.)
Now back on the open sea, they discover a stowaway – Twiggy, a gnome rogue on the run after stealing a strange ball that spits gold, which she calls the Happy Fun Ball of Tricks. The group is accidentally sucked inside, discovering it to be a pocket dimension holding many rooms, created by a wizard named Halas. They explore, eventually stumbling upon a young blue dragon. They barely escape, with Twiggy killing the dragon. When they emerge, they discover that a few hours within the sphere equated to seven days in the outside world.
After fixing the ship, they sail to the second temple, revealed to Fjord in dreams. Fjord places one of his orbs, breaking the seal and gaining the ability to control water. He vows to keep the third orb safe and away from Uk’otoa, who cannot be released without it. Yasha has an encounter with a lightning creature sent by the Storm Lord. She tells Jester and Caduceus that she was known in her tribe as Orphan Maker and married a woman named Zuala against the tribe’s wishes. This resulted in Zuala’s death and Yasha fled, but has no memory of what she did afterwards, but knows the Storm Lord saved her.
The Nein return to Nicodranas, giving care of the ship to their navigator, Orly Skiffback. They visit a mage’s tower belonging to Yussa Erenis. Impressed by the Nein’s knowledge and their desire for non-political allies, Yussa allows Caleb to copy his teleportation circle in exchange for taking the Happy Fun Ball off their hands and having access to the dodecahedron. Caduceus divines that Vandran is alive and seeking amends, informing a grateful Fjord.
They journey to Felderwin, the village that Nott’s friend Yeza Brenatto lives in and that has been the sight of a recent Kryn attack. Upon arriving, Caleb sees two mages from the Cerberus Assembly – Vess DeRogna and the Martinet Ludinus Da’leth. Nott directs them to the Brenatto Apothecary, but it has recently been burned down.
In the basement, they find a chair, a vial filled with distilled dunamis, and notes from the Assembly about their experiments with Dunamancy, the graviturgical magic of the Kryn. Nott blames Caleb and ‘[his] people’ for what happened and leaves to find Yeza’s son, Luc. The Nein learn that their goblin friend Nott the Brave is actually Veth Brenatto – a halfling woman, Yeza’s wife, and Luc’s mother. Five years ago, Veth was murdered by goblins and reincarnated as a goblin by a witch. She took the name Nott the Brave, eventually escaping the clan, but her husband and son believed her to be dead.
Nott learns that Yeza was kidnapped by the Kryn soldiers, so the Nein agree to follow the underground tunnels that the soldiers and their giant worms left behind. Caleb confesses his connection to the Cerberus Assembly and his true name – Bren Aldric Ermendrud. Between Jester’s and Caduceus’s divine magic, they learn that an alive Yeza is heading to Ghor Dranas, the capital of the Kryn Dynasty in Xhorhas. After sending Luc and his caretaker to Alfield, the Nein enter the tunnels after the Kryn.
That is it for today’s full campaign Critical Recap! I’ll be back tomorrow with Episodes 50 – 72. Is it Thursday, yet?