The party quickly learns that the thorn bushes that grow on the stairs are there to protect from intruders. The damage from the thorns is too much to just charge through them. Melech decides to test to see if there are any weak spots. His method of testing involves several squirrels, glue and feathers. Much to the squirrels dismay, there are no weak spots in the defenses. The group, with a little help, is eventually able to figure out the secret to ascending the first two levels of stairs of the ziggurat.
The third set of stairs requires the party to test their constitution in order to complete the required ritual. When seeing the ritual for the first time, Hew makes it really clear “I'm not doing that!”. Hew will fight a dragon, but will not do the ritual. Hew stands guard on the second level of the ziggurat. The good infused ingredients interacts with Melech's less-than-good personality and causes him to fail his constitution saving throw. Melech has to perform the ritual twice in order to ascend to the next level.
The group learns that Artus Cimber apparently has a weak stomach as he has to perform the ritual three times. Finally the group arrives at the top level and are standing outside Saja N'Baza's Shrine. Cautiously they enter and find a completely decorated shrine and occupied instead of the abandoned shrine that they expect. The guardian naga rises from the couch, slithers over to the group and says “I am Saja N'baza. What do you seek in this ancient place? Speak truly, for I hear your hearts!”
While conversing with Saja the party learns; the history of Mezro and it destruction, how the defeat of Ras Nsi lead to his infiltration, metamorphosis, and eventual take over of the Yuan-ti. The guardian naga shares her visions of Ras Nsi and his followers scheming to end the world. When asked about the death plague and the soulmonger, she knows very little except that it fits with various omens of Omu.
Artus Cimber get the answer he was seeking from Saha N'Baza. He is not happy once learning the secret. However he is determined to accomplish this feat in order to be reunited with his wife.
The group decides to head out towards Omu. Artus and Dragonbait offer to continue traveling with them since it seems that the answer to what both parties seek is in Omu. The group travels for the remainder of Day 16.
Camp is set and watches are posted. Artus sits beside a pond and reflects on the knowledge that he has accumulated today. The group turns in while Gudrun takes first watch. Gudran is taken by surprise when a tribal warrior emerges from the bushes and attacks. The group has a tough time when the rest of the tribe shows up.