The fifth quest can be activated if you talk to Ormus after entering the Kurast Causeway:
|You have done well, my friend. Your courage and valor are an inspiration to us all.|
But now the time has come to face those responsible for the evil that has stifled our land. You must destroy the High Council of Zakarum!
Long ago, these elders were charged with the stewardship of Mephisto, the Lord of Hatred, who was imprisoned within the Guardian Tower.
Through the generations, these pious men slowly fell more and more under the sway of Mephisto's malevolent power and the Council became an evil mockery of its former glory.
It is Mephisto's Hatred that has corrupted Zakarum and turned its devout followers into paranoid fanatics. That is why you must travel to the Temple City of Travincal and slay the Council.
Once they are gone, Mephisto's hold over this land and its people will be broken!
|The Blackened Temple|
|Find the Blackened Temple within Travincal.|
If you talk to anyone before leaving, some responses may differ if you haven't returned Lam Esen's Tome to Alkor:
The Temple City is randomly populated by Hierophants (2) with Zealots, and Night Lords. There are also two Water Watchers in each of the pools to either side of the path leading to the entrance of the Blackened Temple, one each by the edge on either side of this path, and one each by the northeast edges.
The layout of Travincal is always the same, though: the only entrance is the Kurast Causeway, crossing the moat that surrounds it on its southwest side (to the northeast of Upper Kurast). There's a raised walkway around its perimeter which can only be accessed on its southwest and northeast sides, and it's divided into quarters by walkways, with a raised platform at their junction in the center of the City: a waypoint can be found in the building at the end of the northwest walkway, and activating it should be your first priority.
The Blackened Temple itself is in the middle of the northeast side, directly opposite the entrance from the Kurast Causeway. Approaching it with activate this quest if talking to Ormus has not already done so.
|The Blackened Temple|
|Kill the High Council.|
If you return before killing the High Council, some responses may differ if you haven't returned Lam Esen's Tome to Alkor:
This quest is mandatory in multiplayer if you aren't completing Khalim's Will to access the Durance of Hate, but instead relying on another player to create a portal for you inside (usually on the second level, by the waypoint): you cannot use such a portal unless you kill the High Council, although you only need to kill the three Super Unique Council Members, not their minions.
Otherwise, only one Super Unique Council Member needs to be killed, since this drops Khalim's Flail (a second only needs to be killed if you don't have a Horadric Cube for some reason). However, it's safest to kill all of them (including their minions) so they don't get in your way.
The three members of the High Council are usually inside the Blackened Temple itself, through the only entrance in its southwest side. However, sometimes a few of them are outside, to the left of the entrance on the columned walkway around its perimeter. It's best to clear the north quarter of Travincal beforehand, to provide room for maneuver.
The first sign that any Council Member is aware of you is likely to be the appearance of Hydra, whose cumulative fire damage can make short work of any mercenary or pets... but shouldn't be that dangerous for your character, since Hydra are pets which only inflict 17% (~1/6) damage on players: reasonable fire resistance should significantly reduce the danger, and it's even possible to equip enough Magic Damage Reduction to negate their damage entirely.
However, aside from massed Hydra, and the ability of the Council Members to heal each other, the main reason to try to draw them out of the Temple and fight them in isolation, rather than charge in and take them on all at once, is the potential for their Unique bonuses to magnify each other, particularly in Nightmare and Hell: Ismail Vilehand is always Cursed and Geleb Flamefinger and minions are always Extra Strong, which is bad enough, but if any of the three also become Aura Enchanted with Might or Fanaticism (or both, from separate Council Members) in later difficulties, things can get very, very ugly...
Ismail Vilehand should be the priority target, and the fact that he and his minions are normally faster should make it easier to separate them from the rest of the High Council by retreating. Once he's been killed, if you've been cursed then drink from a Well or return to Ormus on the Kurast Docks to cure yourself, particularly if you haven't killed Geleb Flamefinger and his minions yet.
Toorc Icefist has no minions, and is normally the least threatening of the High Council. However, the cold length added to his attacks and inflicted by the cold nova upon death can significantly slow down attacks and movement if you don't have Cannot be Frozen.
Once the three members of the High Council have been killed, those in a multiplayer game can now use a portal created by another player to enter the Durance of Hate. Otherwise:
|The Blackened Temple|
|Ask Cain for help.|
If you talk to anyone but Deckard Cain upon your return to the Kurast Docks:
|Ormus is grateful to you, stranger. You have broken the long, dark reign of Zakarum and delivered the first paralyzing blow against the Three.
Yet still, the true test lies ahead. For he whom the Council guarded still lives within the Blackened Tower.
|You've accomplished the impossible! By killing the Council, the curse of Zakarum will be lifted and our land will be free!|
Oh. Thank you!
|The followers of Zakarum lacked all sense of moderation. The collapse of their tainted religion gives me hope.||The sun has set on the Religion of Light.||I can hardly believe you did it. Your power blankets you like a shining aura.||It seems the jungle is already dying back. You've broken the curse, my friend! May the Light bless you!|
Ask Cain for help:
|Ridding Kurast of the Council of Zakarum was essential. Still, there is more you must do. The Compelling Orb, too, must be destroyed.|
Diablo and Baal must be close to finding their brother, Mephisto, by now. You've no time to waste.