Gar’s suspicion that Rowen’s Staff of St Elisas is more than it seems is vindicated when the two receive a vision of the fall of the temple and are ordered to find the last paladins of St. Elisas. A Lantern Archon appears to the PC’s and relays the story.
Ten years ago the Temple of St. Elsisa, One of Aarth’s favorite Saints, was plagued and destroyed by an evil scourge of demons. The Clerics and Paladins fought back the foes but not before Markus, leader of the paladins in a tactical move, forced a retreat from the temple. The fall of the temple and the disgrace of the defeat made the surving Paladins (except one) lose their Paldinhood with no hope of antonement. The remaining Paladins continued to strive to carry out the work of St. Elisa but soon died out leaving only three, Markus, Darius and the one who stood behind, Diana.
Olimar, The cleric was the last surviving member of the priests after the fall. He also managed to hold on to the Churches Artifact, the Staff of St. Elisas. Olimar was attempting to gain information on how to bring back St. Elias, a prophecy that he discovered in the Church of Aarth archives while studying there. Olimar’s inquiries however brought attention by the High Church officials that were responsible for St. Elias church’s demise. Olimar chose to take the passageway in the Catacombs but was slain by creatures roaming the catacombs. The staff and Olimar’s knowledge were all but lost till Rowan and Gar found the Staff and Rowan began to use the staff consistantly.
The Prophecy St. Elias is to come back from the dead and head the Church of Aarth. This is written in the Gospels of Elisas and is very controversial to the Church Hierarchy as it basically trumps what they have been doing for a past hundred years of careful negotiations of power sharing. Allowing St. Elisas to inherit the head of the Church would cause a split in the Church (which is exactly what Aarth wants.)
The only way he can come back is through a true Resurrection. His body still lies in the ruins of the temple of St. Elisa. The legend states that two strangers will come and help the warriors. The Paladins have been waiting for Olimar, the last cleric to order them when the time is right. Since Olimar has been dead these past five years the Paladins have given up.
The Lantern Archon leads them to the Hoard, a cursed part of a city where they find Milo, a halfling Dancer who ended their hear after a failed robbery. The Group finds Markus, the fallen commander of the Paladins who is actively hunting down vampires. When he is shown the staff he agrees to accompany them to find the the rest of the Paladins. After several attempts to escape the horde fail, Rowen finds a escape through one of the groves and performs a task for the guardians to allow the rest of the group passage out of the Grove.