|Required hero||Master of Whispers|
|Preceded by||To Kill a Demon|
|Followed by||Moddok Crevice|
A Thorn in Varesh's Side
Old Woman River
You've agreed to help the elemental Dehjah to remove the Drought, a powerful demon, which has taken up residence in Mahnkelon Waterworks. If left unchecked, the Drought will corrupt the river Elon making it unusable for all those living in the area.
This mission represents a branch in the storyline which is determined by your choice of Master of Whispers or Margrid the Sly. If you have Margrid the Sly, you may return to this mission after completing Abaddon's Gate or enter with someone who has Master of Whispers.
- All party members must have accepted the reward for To Kill a Demon or No Me, No Kormir.
- Master of Whispers must be present in the party.
Destroy the Drought.
- Protect Dehjah until she opens the entrance to the Mahnkelon Waterworks.
- Make your way to the central reservoir.
- Weaken the Drought by shutting off the water pumps. [5...0] of 5 remain active.
- *BONUS* Defeat the Drought without shutting down water pumps.
|Normal mode||Pumps switched off||Rewards|
|Standard||2 - 5||1,000 XP||100||1||20|
|Hard mode||Pumps switched off||Rewards|
|Standard||2 - 5||1,000 XP||200||1||70|
At the beginning of the mission you follow Dehjah as she leads the way to an entrance of the waterworks. She seems to be in a hurry to get rid of the Drought, as she tends to run ahead as soon as each group of enemies is eliminated. Be very careful as she turns left off the land to head to the fort as you can be detained by the group of Kournans whom she will often not aggro. This almost always results in her being killed by the Steelfang Drakes. She will be overwhelmed if you don't keep up, so stick with her. Do not waste any time looting after each encounter as she will not wait. If she dies the mission is over.
Dehjah is the only one who can open the gates to the waterworks. If you miss this by chance, by straying off fighting, you'll be frustrated when you get back to the main gate and it remains locked (even if Dehjah is still alive). If you miss her opening the door just resign and start over because you cannot get in.
Dehjah leaves you at the entrance to the waterworks. There is an environmental effect in this area, Thirst of the Drought, which increases the damage you take from earth damage by 50%. This can make fighting Droughtlings more annoying, but really becomes a problem against the Drought itself who is an elementalist boss specializing in Earth Magic. You can get rid of this effect by turning off each of the pumps in the waterworks, of which there are 5 in total. Each pump gives a 2% morale boost and reduces the environmental effect by 10% until there is no effect at all; however, turning off a pump will cause your party to not gain the Master's Reward.
Travel to each pump indicated by the flags on the area map, killing anything which gets in your way. Switch off as many pumps as you feel is necessary as you make your way inwards to the Drought.
The Drought is accompanied by two Droughtlings and there are several more groups of Droughtlings in the area. Take care of any Droughtling groups you think will get in the way first. Then utilize the skills recommended below when you take on the Drought and stay spread out watching for Sandstorm. Kill the Drought and the Droughtlings in its group to finish the mission.
This is one of the few missions where you must do less, rather than more, to achieve the bonus. Take the most direct route, forgetting the water pumps, and head straight to the Drought. Make sure that you can handle its increased damage output; preprotting, interrupting and/or dazing are all recommended.
- Bring anti-caster skills for the Drought and Droughtlings. Examples would be skills which cause daze, spell interrupts, shutdown (such as Panic or Power Block) or hexes which cause damage to spellcasters (such as Backfire).
- Pain Inverter is especially useful if you bring lots of minions - the Drought will kill itself very quickly.
- The Thirst of the Drought environmental effect increases earth damage taken by your party by up to 50%:
- Damage reduction can be helpful, e.g. Protective Spirit or Shelter.
- The Mesmer skill Aneurysm can be used as a spike against the Droughtlings.
- Restoration helps to prevent wipes, especially during the boss battle.
- Enchantment-based builds are vulnerable to enchantment removal by Kournan Oppressors and Seers.
- Hex removal skills could be unnecessary; the only hex spells your party will encounter are Enchanter's Conundrum (the hex that is applied has no impact if your party does not use enchantments) and Life Siphon (ends when its caster dies).
- 20 Dehjah
- 20 (26) Steelfang Drake
- 24 (26) Droughtling
- 20 (26) Kournan Guard
- 20 (26) Kournan Bowman
- 20 (26) Kournan Priest
- 20 (26) Kournan Oppressor
- 20 (26) Kournan Seer
- 20 (26) Kournan Scribe
- 20 (26) Kournan Phalanx
- 20 (26) Kournan Zealot
- Master of Whispers: "There is a demonic force here, brought from the Realm of Torment. That creature now seeks to become the river."
- <Party leader>: "What do you mean, "become the river?""
- Master of Whispers: "Life here depends on the ebb and flow of the river Elon."
- Master of Whispers: "Should the demon bind the river to its will, nothing here will save Kourna from its taint."
- <Party leader>: "It's good to see you're concerned about your fellow countrymen."
- Master of Whispers: "Their lives are immaterial. But should Abaddon's influence spread further, the consequences will be dire."
- <Party leader>: "How do you know all of this?"
- Master of Whispers: "I make it my business to know. Now come. We must talk to Dehjah. She will help us defeat the demon."
- Master of Whispers: "We must move quickly. The power of the Drought grows stronger with each passing moment."
- Master of Whispers: "Dehjah knows how to access the Mahnkelon Waterworks. I have convinced her to lead us inside. Once we meet with her, we will be off!"
- Dehjah: "Come, Sunspears. I will show you the way. We must be careful. This area is well guarded. Kournans are everywhere, as well as the Drought's minions."
When at the entrance to the Waterworks.
- Dehjah: "As you head to the reservoir try to shut off as many water pumps as you can. This will reduce the flow of water to the Drought and weaken its power."
- Dehjah: "The Drought has placed an enchantment on the pumps. As long as droughtlings or Kournans are near the pumps, we won't be able to turn them off."
When Dehjah opens the entrance.
- Dehjah: "Good luck, Sunspears! Move forth and free the Elon from this plague."
At the first door inside the Waterworks.
- Agent of Whispers: "Stop! Who goes there?"
- Master of Whispers: "Agent of the Order, step aside and grant us passage."
- Agent of Whispers: "My apologies, Master. I didn't expect you to be traveling with Sunspears."
- Agent of Whispers: "Quickly! Pass through before the guards see you."
When approaching the second door.
- Agent of Whispers: "Don't be alarmed. I am of the Order."
- Agent of Whispers: "The Drought lies behind the doors up these stairs."
- Agent of Whispers: "Be warned...the reservoir brims with corrupted spawns of the Drought."
When entering the reservoir.
- The Drought: "Whissppperrssss...you are toooo late. I willlll consuuuummme the Elonnnn....."
- Master of Whispers: "Ready your strength, Sunspears! We shall purge this abomination from our lands."
- <Party leader>: "What is that?"
- Master of Whispers: "A friend of The [sic] Drought, mourning its passage."
- <Party leader>: "We're trapped in here!"
- Master of Whispers: "Don't be too sure of that."
- Master of Whispers: "Never walk into a room unless you're sure you can walk out."
- <Party leader>: "Which means?"
- Master of Whispers: "It means that there was a smuggler's hideout back here. An old corsair friend told me about it."
- Master of Whispers: "There. This should take us all the way north to Vabbi. Let's move."
- Bayel: "What is your problem, hound?!"
- The Hunger: "The Drought is dead. I can feel it in my bones."
- Bayel: "The Drought? Then there are Sunspears in the Waterworks. Go kill them. Kill them now!"
- The Hunger: "All in good time, mortal."
- Bayel: "We have them trapped. What are you waiting for?"
- The Hunger: "You misunderstand, little mortal. You are not my master."
- Bayel: "You are charged to help me hunt these Sunspears. You will do as I say."
- The Hunger: "I answer to my lord Abaddon. I answer to Warmarshal Varesh. I do not answer to you. Are we clear?"
- Bayel: "I am Varesh's general. You should respect . . ."
- The Hunger: "Varesh does not need generals any more. She needs us. Do not make her choose."
- The Hunger: "We are partners, at best, until all your Sunspears are slain."
- Bayel: "And then?"
- The Hunger: "Then? We will renegotiate. I know where these Sunspears are going. Follow me."
- Since you gain the standard reward if you switch off any more than one pump, the only practical benefit for skipping pumps after turning off two is that it will make the mission slightly faster.
- To capture Sandstorm from the Drought, ensure it is killed before the two Droughtlings adjacent to it.
- If you are having trouble keeping Dehjah alive to open the gate, do not approach her as you start the mission. Stay tight into the shadow of the cliffs, and clear the route to the gate. Then have a party member run back to trigger Dehjah.
- Survivors beware, for even in Normal mode, the Drought could kill a player in a single hit when going for the Master's reward.
- After completing this mission, your party will be teleported to Moddok Crevice.
- This mission is not required to complete the campaign.