Sunday, December 13, 2009

Mask’s Assam and the Lord of the Black Guardsmen

  • Characters: Bixtbie, Dak, Cromwell, Forkbeard, Jebeddo, Rog, Sentalial, V.L., X-Requinn, Zaytheon
  • NPCs: Uljary Blackshore, Armunestor the Mouth of Mask, Zedrick Neely, Councilman Dimlock
  • Synopsis: As representatives of the City of Assam, the horsemen lead by Captain Uljary Blackshore present to the adventurers Armunestor, the Mouth of Mask. The ethereal appearance of the man is astonishing, but Assam’s welcoming committee praises the group for passing the four tests of Mask. With Assam now a theocracy under the direction and guidance of Mask, all citizens are followers of the god. Those that were expelled and failed to vacate the city were sundered during the tests. Some of the group questions the methods, but the calm demeanor of the horsemen lead straight into negotiations. Zedrick Neely, exiled former leader of the Night Masks of Westgate, appears before the group summoning an exotic mansion to serve as a comfortable site to begin negotiations. Jebeddo, wizard class of the Year of the Gauntlet, represents the Army of Nature’s Wrath, and asks the Dark Lancers to join the war against the Black Legion. Zedrick is well aware of the war, serving on the Circle of Holundi as well as knowing the intimate details of Westgate herself. The Mouth of Mask speaks of the common enemy and agrees to join the war, working in conjunction with the attack against the forces of Mystenaculis. The Dark Lancers will fight against the Black Legion and retake the fallen Westgate, restoring Zedrick Neely to his command of the Night Masks. The plan unfolds; in three days time the army of Cormyr will reach the western front. Simultaneously the Dark Lancers will attack from the south and the Army of Nature’s Wrath will attack from the east. But in order for the coordinated effort to succeed Mystenaculis’ second-in-command, the Lord of the Black Guardsmen, must be defeated. The group is to travel to the fallen war mage College of the Fire Hawks where spectral forces are being dispatched by the Lord himself. Zedrick reveals that the Black Bard Mystenaculis is preparing a host entity for the lost god Myrkul, former god of the dead who seeks to regain the power. The group agrees to destroy the Lord of the Black Guardsmen. During the down time, Dak, Zaytheon and X-Requinn receive gifts from Zedrick to aid them in their scope. On the third day Zedrick teleports the group outside of the war college. Bixtbie scouts ahead and surmises that their target is in the largest building at the rear of the compound as spectral warriors are being dispatched in constant fashion. X-Requinn stone shapes an entrance into the building triggering a ward. Moving inside, the party is surrounded by eight stone golems. A lone figure standing the far corner is encased by a wall of force and begins directing the golems against the party before disappearing. Against the far wall is a mirror portal that appears to house the attacker. Moving through the magic portal, the group attacks the necromancer as he has erected another wall of force against the back wall of the new chamber. The maneuver works brilliantly as the stone golems can only move through the portal one at a time, creating a bottle-neck effect. As the rear warriors keep the golems at bay, Forkbeard, Bixtbie, Jebeddo and Dak attack the necromancer. The gambit is a massive success as one stone golem after another is destroyed. Jebeddo opens a dimensional door to access the Lord of the Black Guardsmen while Forkbeard squeezes through the crawlspace at the top of the wall. Relishing the opportunity to use his well-earned armor, Dak vaporizes into a cloud of gas appearing above the necromancer. The fighter’s attack is unrelenting as the spiked chain breaks again and again on the wizard’s body. Surrounded but not out-matched, the Lord releases diminishing spell after debilitating spell before his grand finale. Arced lighting bounces back and forth between his attackers pulling their life force apart in dramatic fashion. With their last breath and concentrated effort, the wizard falls. Immediately the wall of force vanishes and the stone golems cease the attack. Beneath the cowl is Dimlock, former Councilman of New Kelvin and one of Forkbeard’s and Cromwell’s old enemies. Before the dust can settle, the door to the chamber bursts open as a skeletal dragon rears. Cromwell calls on his god and the group is teleported to Threshold with their task achieved.
  • Encounters: eight stone golems, Lord of the Black Guardsmen Dimlock
  • Achievements: created a temporary alliance with the Dark Lancers of Assam, defeated the Lord of the Black Guardsmen Dimlock, and secured the Crown of the Stone Golem.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Calming of Carowyn Manor

  • Characters: Alrak, Belton Stoutshield, Crulamin, Domollo Blue
  • NPCs: Lord Carowyn
  • Synopsis: After searching what remains of Jocylina, the group discovers a hand-scrawled letter addressed to one Rolth. Piecing the text of blood together, the letter requests Rolth’s return after having taken several of her ‘guests’ from the party, including a minstrel. The words also incriminate the gray maidens, followers of Eliosa Arabasi, in the introduction and spread of the Blood Veil. With the bloodied axe, Barl and Zaos leave Carowyn Manor with the damning letter with intents on delivering it to the priest of Torm Eshtani Doctry. With only have of the manor explored, the group continues the room-to-room search after Domollo hears flitterings of movement in an adjacent room. Two zombies are preparing a garnished human for the main course in the kitchen. The sight of the depravity is sickening as the group harshly deals with the would-be chefs. Exploring the exterior of the ground floor, the group moves through the lavish and scenic back yard to the guest house. The winter wonderland is captivating in its peacefulness. That is until Crulamin spots the broken glass and unmistakable foot dragings of the zombies that fearfully exited the manor via the second story windows. Finding the guest house free of the undead, the group ventures to the cellar below, discovering a hidden crawl space that leads back to beneath the manor. A well-stocked wine cellar is also home to a locked room. Crulamin and Alrak blast the door to smithereens, which is more effective than Domollo’s efforts to gain entry. The adventurers find a cowering man who identifies himself as Lord Carowyn. Rambling about his missing wife Domollo calms him enough to drag out additional facts of the party gone horribly wrong. Lord Carowyn depicts the party as any normal gathering of the elite, until the crazed harlequin-dressed elf crashed it. The intruder began firing her crossbow into the guests. Evidently tainted with the Blood Veil, the wounded began succumbing rapidly to the effects of the disease. In the chaos he escaped to the cellar and locked himself in. Domollo assures that help is in route as their comrades have left with the evidence to the Temple of Torm. Lord Carowyn is instructed to remain in his niche until all remnants of Jocylina’s doing are extinguished. After securing the battered door as best as possible, the group returns to the second floor of the manor following the layout as described by the distraught head of the house. In the master bedroom they interrupt one zombie dressing another in a ruined gown. The description provided by Lord Carowyn matches one of the zombies; it is, or was, his wife. Belton looses an impressive array of electrical sparks, catching the two zombies. Alrak and Crulamin converge on the monsters delivering the killing blows. With the extermination of all uninvited guests the adventurers return to Lord Carowyn to give him the horrid news of his wife’s passing. They began extricating the man to bring to Eshtani as he is now a material witness of the crime that is the Blood Veil.
  • Encounters: two zombie chefs, Lord Carowyn, zombie debutante, zombie noble
  • Achievements: cleared the Carowyn Manor of undead, discovered incriminating evidence linking Jocylina to the Gray Maidens of Eliosa Arabasi, a member of the ruling merchant council, and secured the eye witness Lord Carowyn that Jocylina was spreading the Blood Veil disease.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Mask’s Assault on Assam – The Last Nail

  • Characters: Bixtbie, Dak, Cromwell, Forkbeard, Jebeddo, Rog, Roywyn, Sentalial, V.L., Vexander, Wicasa, X-Requinn, Zaytheon
  • NPCs: Julbin Cometstrike, Uljary Blackshore, Gilpin, Assam heckler
  • Synopsis: Beneath to wall of force atop the coffin, Dak and Rog are worthless again their entrapment. Repeated poundings have yielded nothing. The coffin lid slams shut, crashing their spirits so much as a boot heel does a bug. But as their hope dwindles, Julbin’s visage and voice appear in their minds’ eye. The sage warns that the ruins on the Giant Plane that they discovered are birthing gates to other planes, planes that are violating the order of things. The spawning of gates is allowing extraplanar creatures unnatural access to the Material Plane and threaten the Dragon Coast. The unhallowed mist encroaching on their ankles starts to disperse as Julbin’s work stretches across miles of land. The sage’s efforts free the pair as Cromwell, Zaytheon and Bixtbie arrive. Cromwell guides the group to their destination, the coffin on the south side of Assam. The rendezvous is not glorious as the successive battles are taking their toll on the party. Catching their collective breath the final coffin is the site of the extraordinary and devious. Three ghoulish souls sit atop the interloping chamber deep in conversation. Mention of someone named Gilpin causing them angst is overheard, but not much else. Attempts to engage their conversation are fruitless until Roywyn presents herself causing the ghouls to take a greater interest in their audience. Butting his way into the conversation X-Requinn offers his service as a follower of Mystra and is greeted warmly by the spirits Goren, Gavin and Paul as their goddess Mask has often worked with Mystra for the benefit of all. The lies break across X-Requinn’s countenance, shattering his demeanor. The sea elf presents his symbol of Mystra, but the ghouls are ready for the attack. Combat explodes at the feet of the final coffin, but an unseen wail grows ever nearer as once again darkness envelops the group. From outside the effects of the black sphere, the group works against the hidden assailants, but only a rare strike finds its target. The ghosts are well protected and their spirits are buffed by the growing crescendo that is the shriek of the dead. Cromwell and Wicasa are the only ones to see the true threat as a hideous ghost screams a terrible curse across the fields of Assam. The ghouls cackle with glee as their Mistress of Mask has arrived. The impenetrable globe of darkness hides the attackers well as the adventurers work to dismantle the three ghouls to focus on the spectre. Piecing together a plan from the clues, Jebeddo takes Vexander and V.L. to the previous coffin to retrieve the black knight in hopes of perplexing the ghouls. The knight in ceramic armor can be turned into an ally. Cromwell forms steps from the air and works his way to greet the abomination with his Fist of Helm. The two trade blows but her attacks peal back Cromwell’s layers of charisma and he is forced to retreat or become undead himself. After several repeated attempts Roywyn vaporizes the darkness, exposing their enemies. The ghouls are finally destroyed as the party refocuses everything in its arsenal againt the Mistress of Mask. The collective effort is only just enough to destroy the shrieking spirit, but not before it emits a call of death that catches not only the field of battle, but the wall’s of Assam. The wave of doom washes over the city walls catching onlookers and soldiers alike. The effect is devastating as those commoners who were cheering on the adventurers are taken. Numerous bodies keel overtop the parapet crashing to the uneven ground below. Ultimately the death of Mask vanishes leaving the party gasping for life. Jebeddo, Vexander and Zaytheon arrive, bringing along the black knight now known as Gilpin. Without another word or omen, Gilpin drives his fists into the last remaining coffin, shattering it to pieces. An almost peaceful mood overtakes the knight as its shoulders slump. With his head turned towards the group, the body beneath the armor seems to crumble and the armor collapses in on itself. Falling to the group, the ceramic pieces shatter to tiny bits against the hard, rocky surface much to the dismay of the poorly armored Zaytheon. Cheers erupt from the survivors of the death wail. From the same gate that arrived earlier, the four horsewomen gallop towards the adventurers, accompanied by the heckler. Wicasa snarls at the man, but before words and blades exchange, the dismounting man parts his cloack to reveal the etching on his armor. He brandishes the symbol of the Dark Lancers.
  • Encounters: three ghouls, deathshrieker
  • Achievements: destroyed the Mistress of Mask, freed Gilpin the black knight, and destroyed each of the coffin gates surrounding Assam.

Mask’s Assault on Assam – The West Coffin

  • Characters: Forkbeard, Jebeddo, Roywyn, Sentalial, V.L, Vexander, Wicasa, X-Requinn
  • NPCs: Julbin Cometstrike, Assam heckler, Uljary Blackshore
  • Synopsis: Jebeddo appears in Threshold frantically searching for allies in their battle. The gnome’s name and honor are at stake, as he has yet to even begin negotiations with the City of Assam. The wayfinder finds his way to Julbin Cometstrike’s hut and drafts Vexander the cleric and the breathtaking Roywyn to his cause. Julbin also provides the means to aid the party by repelling the magic surrounding the coffins, as well as freeing Forkbeard from his petrified status. Stuffing the items into his pouches, Jebeddo grasps his new allies and teleports back to Assam. As the party’s resources continue to dwindle, Bixtbie, Cromwell and Zaytheon return to the coffin that has trapped Rog and Dak. Their sheer brutality will be needed to win this engagement. The rest of the party fly after the departed Sentalial, only to find him undecided in his approach to the coffin on the west side of the city. Standing atop of the landscape’s intruder is a knight in black ceramic armor. Whispered advice escapes the helmet as it repeats “Do not listen to her. If you do you will die.” The parlay is worthless as the herald continues spouting his warnings. As if plagued by singular, unrelenting, and impossible to kill gnat, Wicasa is hounded by the heckler atop the city wall. Accusations hurl from the safety of Assam. But luckily the words are drowned by the pending combat. Surrounded by his allies, Sentalial leads the group, pressing the attack. Whomever or whatever the herald is, or what woman he bellows about, he is at the wrong place at the wrong time. Blows are delivered but not returned, but the melee triggers the lid of the coffin. Immediately surrounding the frontline warriors are undead creatures summoned from some barren wasteland of dust and dried-up seas. A swirling mist of gray envelops the adventurers, and Sentalial and V.L. quickly find themselves in a bad way. Jebeddo’s reinforcements arrive to prevent the murder as the gnome wizard dispels the mist. Even more undead join the fray, a pair of embalmed corpses and a walker of graves coated in spider webs. Vexander presents his holy symbol and sends two of the attackers away in fear. Sentalial and V.L. work quickly delivering righteous blow after righteous blow, sending chunks of salt and debris showering the ground. The exchange of attacks is epic, as the slams against Sentalial seem to suck his breath from his lungs. And the paladins belief is greater than his enemies; they are smited and Sentalial’s sword sends the salted adversary screaming to the soil. Only a fraction of time expires before the salted mounds reform into their former bodies and begin attacking anew. X-Requinn grabs his decanter of endless water to test his theory. True the the hypothesis, the water douses the creatures forming puddles that seep quickly into the disturbed ground surrounding the unholy coffins. Weary of previous attempts, Jebeddo cautiously investigates the coffin finding that permanent spells are in place making the chamber unhallowed with Mask’s authority. But more disturbing is the gate effect still in place, somehow allowing for interplanar travel. Despite their accumulated knowledge the group can only derive that the source is from one of the outerplanes. The group recuperates, quickly assessing their resources. Before they march onto the last coffin, the outlandish heckler once again scolds Wicasa, blaiming the secretive adventurer for the cities woes. In a burst of rage, Wicasa Wakan shouts back, “Will you not fight for your own city, will you not?!?” As a retort builds, the man is cut off by Uljary Blackshore, one of the city’s commanders and one of the four horsewomen that initially greated the adventurers. Seemingly the heckling stops, but not before Sentalial rides off to the last of Mask’s coffins. Moving after their ally, the group simulataneously floats to the ground. The warriors immediately feel weaker and less mobile. The spells put in place before the battles have been exhausted. Now they must face their last, and greatest encounter with but their swords, wits, and what little spells remain.
  • Encounters: three salt mummies, two mummies, webbed zombie
  • Achievements: defeated the attackers from the west coffin, and admonished the cowardly troops behind the walls of Assam

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Jocylina’s Party at the Carowyn Manor

  • Characters: Alrak, Barl Bloodbones, Belton Stoutshield, Crulamin, Domollo Blue, Zaos
  • NPCs: Eshtani Doctry, Tae Soldado, Daeanaria, Ruan, Jocylina
  • Synopsis: The spread of the disease Bloodveil creeps across the adventurers as the deep dwarf Barl Bloodbones succumbs to its depths. Arriving at the Temple of Torm, the group is granted audience with Eshtani who struggles with the dangerous outbreak. After healing Barl, Eshtani is slightly reprieved when the group offers to extend themselves on Eshtani’s behalf. The follower of Torm redirects the adventurers back to the Soldado homestead. Their success in healing the young Brianna reverberated throughout the community and a friend of the Soldado’s comes forward with an urgent request. Daeanaria reports that her brother Ruan is missing. Being a harpist, he was hired by the monied and elite House Carowyn to perform at a galla event two nights prior, but has not returned. She went to the house to investigate herself, but it was boarded up and shuttered. Since the Bloodveil outbreak, she fears contracting the disease but cries for her brother’s whereabouts. Accepting the grieving sister’s request, the group leaves for the Carowyn manor finding it in the exact condition Daeanaria descriped. Domollo and Barl make quick work of the fancy lock and push into the foyer. There they stumble onto a grotesque sight as undead dressed in fancy outfits are paired up on a dance floor, flittering about to unheard music. As inevitable combat erupts, cackling laughter comes from beyond the dance floor. The source is a femal elf, marred with bizarre make-up and dressed in a ball gown, its garish colors clashing. Announcing their entrance, the elf welcomes the party-goers to “Jocylina’s Party” and instructs the zombies to attack. The group plugs up the foyer while battling the undead, only to be the intended recipients of Jocylina’s attacks from afar. In the adjacent lounge more zombies linger, latent in there lack of response to the melee. Arlak is able to break through, tracing the hysterical elf upstairs where he finds more zombies in the gallery. Presenting his newly acquired holy symbol, the dwarf banishes them, sending them scurrying through the balcony windows and crashing to the streets below. A series of unfortunate events plagues the party as Jocylina douses Barl with alchemists’ fire. His return shot with the crossbow errantly fires into Belton’s back, crippling the wizard. Zaos and Crulamin continue decimating the horde as bodies continue to pile up on the dance floor, as the lounging zombies join the soiree. Barl gathers his wits and turns invisible, beginning his hunt along with Domollo Blue for the laughing elf. The two find her in the sitting room only to have her escape again. The crazed hostess is dancing throughout the manor, reeking havoc on her uninvited guests. Another batch of zombies arrives from the dinning room, only adding the great wall of zombies that the party is constructing. But the groups health dwindles even as their foes numbers do in turn. Barl and Domollo track Jocylina to the servants’ entry, rushing her position in an attempt to end this evil play. As she goes to retreat, Domollo swings, violently missing. But the still invisible Barl Bloodbones strike is as true as the Underdark is lightless. Bring his dwarven battle axe down on Jocylina, Barl drives the blow deep into the elf’s torso, sending her body violently in two opposed directions. Clan Bloodbones has earned its name once again as what remains of the hostess is all but red grafitti splattered across the wall. Domollo Blue is stunned at the massive display of brawn but redirects his ally to the zombie battle behind them. Reuniting the party and flanking the undead, the two join the rest and dismember the remaining “guests”. Now all they have to figure out is which head belongs to Ruan the Harpist.
  • Encounters: six zombie dancers, three zombie loungers, three zombie art critics, four zombie diners, and Jocylina
  • Achievements: discovered the horrific aftermath of an murdered party, destroyed most of the undead of the Carowyn manor, and split the responsible elven witch in two pieces.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Mask’s Assault on Assam – The North Coffin

  • Characters: Bixtbie, Cromwell, Forkbeard, V.L, Wicasa, X-Requinn, Zaytheon
  • NPCs: None
  • Synopsis: After defeating the astral demonoids, the group investigates the mysterious coffin, only to trigger a planar shift that steals Rog and Dak into the coffin itself. Unable to extricate their comrades, the group signals to them to hold tight through hand gestures and written words. Cat-calls from the city guard find the ears of the party triggering a decisive glare from Wicasa and a call to arms by X-Requinn. During the interaction, the follower of Mystra spots another ally Zaytheon approaching the city. The warrior has joined the battle just in time as X-Requinn summons a mount for Zaytheon and the two rendezvous with the group. But the delay in action is too long for Sentalial who summons his mount and gallops off towards the north. The party chases after the paladin only to quickly lag behind the charging Sentalial. After the separation, the group realizes they have lost another of their number as Jebeddo has disappeared. The wailing of Assam’s citizens rings throughout the city’s exterior; time is collapsing on the adventurers. They make the decision to gather their remaining resources and destroy the occupant or occupants of the north coffin. Bixtbie cracks the black stone lid with a borrowed wand of knocking and steps back from the unknown. As with the first coffin an obscuring darkness envelops the group’s surroundings, capturing them in a pitch black blanket. Only Cromwell and Wicasa can see their attackers as five earthen humanoids emerge from their crypt. The surrounding party is at an immediate disadvantage, unable to see their enemy. X-Requinn summons Mystra’s aid and banishes the darkness. The battle’s scales shift towards the center, but not in time to balance the combat. The undead stone humanoids emit a cloud of dust that collect on Forkbeard. Grimacing in pain, the dwarf succumbs to the magic effects, turning to stone. Wicasa rescues the statue from oblivion by shifting the plane of shadow while grappling the petrified Stone Lord. Zaytheon delivers a crushing blow, but the trade-off is devastating as his plate mail armor desintigrates, falling to pieces at his feet. But strike acts as the balance shift in balance towards the adventurers. In rapid succession, the five undead invaders are destroyed. The assault on Assam is only half-way repelled.
  • Encounters: five dust wights
  • Achievements: defeated the attackers from the north coffin.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Great Ball of Lightning, Part III – Assault on Assam

  • Characters: Bixtbie, Cromwell, Dak, Forkbeard, Jebeddo, Rog, Sentalial, V.L, Wicasa, X-Requinn
  • NPCs: Julbin, Quint, Uljary Blackshore
  • Synopsis: Erupting from the source, the ball of lightning breaks free from the ruins and collects in the sky. But it has ceased to be anchored to the Giant’s Plain and begins moving over the Giant’s Run Mountains. Quint assesses the path and determines that the target destination is the city of Assam. The party decides to seek reinforcements from Treshold and return to the small town. After hearing of their tales and the coincidental connection to Assam, several of the Defenders of the Dragon Coast join the group to continue the investigation. Traveling to Assam is a simple spell as the enlarged group appears in the midst of chaos. Outside of the city walls, merchants and city folk are in sheer agony and panic. With an unseen possession or some type of horrific curse, the affected begin collapsing or running in random directions. The Assam Captain of the Guard Uljary Blackshore intercepts the group with three of her captains in-command, investigating their strange appearance of the party. As the interview turns confrontational the welcoming committee sets up a barrier fire wall and retreats to the city. Jebeddo and X-Requinn combine to allow the party to fly invisibly over the city where they find mysterious stone coffins, one bordering on the outside of each city wall in all four directions. Without a doubt the focus of the disturbance emminates from these coffins. Choosing the east wall coffin, Dak cracks it up and is inundated with obscuring mist. Hidden darts target the group, but the attackers are nowhere to be seen. As the adventurers spread out, Dak draws the ire of one of their invisible assailants. Now visible to everyone, the group pounces on the muscular humanoid with leathery black skin and massive claws. After surrounding the newly found foe, another appears in a flanking position and drops Wicassa Wakan. The group works together to support and flank their opponents as yet a third demonic creature appears. Battling against the injured, the initial two beasts are destroyed, and the third is killed after attempting to flee. Before any inspection can be made the corpses vaporize in a cloud a blackened dust and smoke. It bodes poorly for the adventurers that there are still three coffins left surrounding Assam.
  • Encounters: Assam’s captain of the guard, three astral stalkers
  • Achievements: followed the ball of lightning to the city of Assam, discovered a city under attack by an unseen curse, and defeated the occupants of one of the offending coffins.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Wrath of Landryn Teriak the Shadow Lord

  • Characters: Aramir, Dorian, Forkbeard, Gallipolas, Henzio, Jebeddo, Lazbin, Rathgillian
  • NPCs: Landryn Teriak
  • Synopsis: The Defenders decide to travel to Assam to deal with the tyranny of the Dark Lancers. But not without dealing with their new captive, Landryn Teriak the Shadow Lord. The execution starts just outside of the city walls as the group surrounds the Shadow Lord. Gagged and bound, Landryn Teriak can only plead with his eyes, begging through Forkbeard’s well-placed sock. The muffled urges are ignored as Dorian contemplates only for a second before dropping the final judgement on his nemesis. Taking a step back the sorcerer begins to cast, but before the spell is completed the Shadow Lord lurches forward collapsing on Dorian. Shadows spin from every niche as the pair vaporizes into the surrounding darkness. The party is left standing in the wooded entrance to the city of Cedarspoke wondering what has just occurred. Moments later shadows engulf the entire area, plunging the woodlands into a nest of entangled shadow strands. From everywhere the voice of the Shadow Lord condemns the party for its lack of vision, promising to reveal his kingdom of all shadows. They will fall in line, or fall under might. Within the confines of the shadow strands vision is limited and the party is sectioned off. Each one feels the pull of the owners of the shadow nest. Flowing through the shadow stuff, the group discovers two shadow aberrations responsible for their predicament. Unimpeded Gallipolas flies to the skies and sees the two shadow domes covering his allies. The battle rages until both shadow creatures are dropped. Simultaneously the domes vanish to reveal the woods embraced by dusk. Gallipolas looses a wall of fire to surround the invisible Shadow Lord just as a trio of fighter brutes emerges from the vine-covered city gates. Their menacing stance and equipped spiked chains indicate they are foes. Before any engagement the fighters morph into shadow beasts and emit a fierce howl that slices through half of the group’s will. Others watch as their comrades run fleeing into the woods. The invisible Shadow Lord cries for support, screaming that the shadow devils have found him. Even Cedarspoke is susceptible to invasion as first the drow, and now the devils, have infiltrated the city’s walls. The beasts converge on the Shadow Lord who is now visible, tearing him apart. With their enemies clustered Dorian explodes fire upon them and Gallipolas summons a comet from the skies. The beasts are obliterated and the Shadow Lord is crushed from the impact. Even as shadows splinter back to their natural source, the Shadow Lord’s voice once again breaks the silence. His verbal attack is directed at Dorian and offers knowledge of his surviving kin’s whereabouts, should the elf be interested. The proposition is in line with rumors of survivors of the massacre of the Lothenar Elves. But before Dorian can respond the Shadow Lord’s voice is no more as their enemy shadow walks his way to freedom. Fits of rage finally subside as the Defenders choose to remain in Cedarspoke to rest and spend some of their accumulated wealth, for their future ventures will be the most treacherous of their career.
  • Encounters: The Shadow Lord, two darkweavers, three shadurakul
  • Achievements: could not prevent the escape of the Shadow Lord, drew out the presence of devils within Cedarspoke, and received additional confirmation of survivors of the Lothenar elves.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

The Assassination Attempt of General Freutin

  • Characters: Aramir, Dorian, Forkbeard, Gallipolas, Henzio, Jebeddo, Lazbin, Rathgillian
  • NPCs: Captain Brighton, General Freuntin, Zalaznar Crinios, Landryn Teriak
  • Synopsis: While leaving the Earthome library Forkbeard, Jebeddo, and Lazbin are stopped in place by Captain Brighton on the Army of Nature’s Wrath. They agree to a meeting with General Freuntin, but allegations are ledged against Jebeddo of the wizard class of the Year of the Gauntlet for dereliction of duty, failure to report, and desertion. In the presence of Freutin, Jebeddo is silenced as the leader of the Army of Nature’s Wrath rages against the absent wizard. Hearing about their research of the Firehill Runestones, Freuntin cries folly against getting the ancient runestones, revealing that the Council of the Divine explored this avenue months ago to great detriment. Half of the Divine Hammer has gone missing after two failed expeditions to retrieve the Firehill Runestones. Lazbin is released to bring the rest of the Defenders so that Freuntin can address them collectively before they speak with the Council. Lazbin returns with the others as General Freutin reassigns Jebeddo for his final task as a soldier in the Army of Nature’s Wrath. He is to travel to the warrior city-state of Assam atop the Windbreaker Mesa in the Shining Plains and convince the Dark Lancers to join them in defeating the Black Legion. The Dark Lancers alliance with the Wizards of Tendale has expired and their forces have consolidated to Assam under their new leader, only know as the General. Freutin’s strategy is to have the armies of the Dark Lancers, Cormyr and Nature’s Wrath converge upon the Black Legion and annihilate them once and for all. Without the Dark Lancers the Black Legion can flee to the south to the Orsraun Mountains. Freuntin also suggests the potential of infiltrating Westgate to kill the heads of the Forces of Mystenaculis who have enslaved the citizens. The Defenders ponder their multiple choices as Freuntin escorts them to the Council of the Divine. In route, a phaerlin giants erupt from the ground each with a drow archer supported on its back. Their target is obvious as all of the Defenders are ignored in an attempt to kill General Freuntin. Lazbin teleports Freuntin to safety while the group wipes out the giants and drow. Only a single archer escapes into the ambush tunnels below Cedarspoke. In front of the council the Defenders are praised for their actions. They have been in council with the Circle of Holundi and have coordinated strategies in dealing with the Forces of Mystenaculis and the Black Legion. Dorian offers the deceased members of Divine Hammer and the council offers custody of the Shadow Lord. Despite the misgivings of General Freuntin, the council asks for the Defenders help in retrieving the Firehill Runestones as they are invaluable to their cause. The Shadow Lord’s protests are silenced with a gag as the Defenders leave the council chambers with their hard-fought prize. General Freutin sees them to the gates of the city, briefly watching over the Shadow Lord during the group’s deliberations. The Defenders decide to travel to Assam to assimilate the Dark Lancers in the war. But not before dealing with the criminal Shadow Lord.
  • Encounters: General Freuntin’s inquisition, six phaerlin giants, two drow dark snipers, one drow ninja, and one drow priestess of Kiaransalee, Council of the Divine quest to Scarwall
  • Achievements: stopped a drow assassination attempt on General Freuntin, saving his life in the process, learned of the surviving Dark Lancer army, negotiated the release of the Shadow Lord to their custody, and received a map to the fabled keep of death Scarwall.

The Lighthouse Sting – The Fall of Lycast

  • Characters: Azla, Cheynar, Flannigan, Janora, X-Requinn
  • NPCs: None
  • Synopsis: The adventurers decide to pull out and regroup. Marlet has vacated the aerial assault, retrieving Vexander and Sentalial and returning to Threshold to help verify the words of Krullix. Finding the call to arms true, Marlet grabs Azla the war mage and the cat-folk scout Cheynar to continue the assault on the tower. Remaining outside the parameter the others scour the woods to find Krullix. Only moments after a rendezvous with the rogue, Marlet returns with familiar allies and the group returns to the tower. Traversing the stairs of the tower, the adventurers reach the second level and find more empty quarters and unoccupied rooms. The two largest rooms are breached and each contains a cluster of goblins sharpening weapons. Slaying the trespassers, the group continues to the next level finding a different layout. The locked room is infiltrated after female noises are heard. Convinced that the leader of the goblin tribe, the so-called Lycast, is just beyond the door, X-Requinn blasts the door to pieces as the lock-pickers cannot bypass the bound barrier. The quarters are empty save for a large chest and Flannigan gets to work quickly. Others move to the door to an adjacent room. Opening the door, a hidden opponent strikes out. The group rushes in to find no one before retreating. The invisible attacker shifts position as X-Requinn unplugs his ever-lasting decantor of water. The room begins to flood as the assailant’s footsteps give her away. Magic is loosed as Azla and X-Requinn use area-blast spells to flush out the invisible hag. The successive blasts reveal a fallen green hag, and no doubt as to the tribe’s gross ambitions. With only the remaining tribal champion, the mysterious Skrom, the group continues to the next level finding a barghest with his goblin minions. The battle is well orchestrated with the archers and spellcasters maintaining cover while the melee experts flanking opponents and quickly disabling the threat. Skrom fails under the blade. The stairs are checked at a trap door leading to the roof where other goblins are heard. Returning to the previous level and exiting the windows, the group attacks the roof by scaling the walls. Atop the tower are the remaining goblins that were not cast down by Marlet and her bronze griffon. Combat is spread throughout but the goblins are outmatched and they all are killed. With the tower vacated and the threat to passing ships removed, and the long journey home from their high seas adventures almost complete, the heroes begin their trek back to Threshold.
  • Encounters: eight armory goblins, green hag Lycast, three goblin minions, tribal champion barghest Skrom
  • Achievements: sacked the phony lighthouse, destroyed both the goblin tribe leader and the tribal champion

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Lavendar’s Riot

  • Characters: Alrak, Barl Bloodbones, Crulamin, Domollo Blue, Malhavoc, Zaos
  • NPCs: Aria Yelloweyes, Eshtani Doctry, Lavendar
  • Synopsis: The Teziiran City Watch has established an all-persons curfew at sundown following the massive spread of the Bloodveil. At the Smelted Horse Domollo speaks with Aria Yelloweyes who has heard of his name and is following the exploits of his group, specifically the lycanthrope-striken Belton. After giving Domollo a map of the sewers, she says that a follower of Vernon Archer named Geargz is amassing a following and weapons in the sewers. He was must be convinced to disarm, either diplomatically or physically. Given that the curfew has been established, the group decides to wait it out a night before checking Aria’s authenticity. In the morning Zaos receives a scroll from Eshtani Doctry of the Temple of Torm. A merchant named Lavendar is perpetuating a cure for the Bloodveil. As clerics of Torm cannot thoroughly investigate without being mobbed by plague victims, he requests that Zaos and his group verify the claims of the cure. Traveling to Lavendar’s Luxurious Linamints, they find another development in the outbreak. The city’s merchant council has issued a decree giving Doctor Duvalus and his physicians as well as Eliosa Arabasi and her Gray Maidens full authority in dealing with the outbreak. All citizens must abide by their demands or face extreme prejudice. The emergency powers given to the outsiders is truly frightening and the development reflects the dire situation brought on by the Bloodveil plague. At Lavendar’s place of business, word has spread and people are lined up through the streets. Muscling there way to the front, the two bouncers are intimidated into allowing the group entry. After purchasing a vial of the “cure” Domollo Blue confronts Lavendar, detecting a falsehood in her statements. Zaos presents the written request from the Temple of Torm, but the effect backfires as potential patrons start a riot. Domollo Blue attempts to subdue Lavendar but she escapes into the back alley to her apartment. The riot becomes full-scale as the store’s bouncers are caught in the shuffle and the store is thrashed. The throng of desperate citizens transforms into a stampede. As Domollo, Zaos and Crulamin give chase, Barl and Malhavoc strip the store safe from its foundation and strike fear into the looters. The store is vacated and Alrak is caught up in the rush, coming to blows with one of the bouncers and forcing him to retreat. Lavendar unleashes her deadly blade catching both Crulamin and Zaos with her poison-tipped dagger. She is quickly subdued and covertly escorted back to the Temple of Torm. The circumstantial evidence is presented to Esthani who questions the detective work, but finds Lavendar’s use of poison a criminal offense, enough to halt her peddling of the “cure” at least temporarily. The group rendezvous at the Smelted Horse finds everyone made it out intact. Barl and Malhavoc crack the safe, but do not find any additional incriminating evidence, only fine valuables. Perhaps the confusion of the riot will blur unwanted memories.
  • Encounters: Aria Yelloweyes, two rogue thugs, diseased mob, Lavendar
  • Achievements: received an inquiry regarding a militant wererat, intimidated store guards, initiated a riot, subdued a practioner of a false cure, and presented flimsy evidence of wrong-doing.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Bloodveil Over Teziir

  • Characters: Barl Bloodbones, Belton Stoutshield, Crulamin, Domollo Blue, Gonzor (Fash), Zaos
  • NPCs: Eshtani Doctry, Captain Redbeard, Grau, Crasidia Croft
  • Synopsis: The adventurers bring the body of their fallen ally Farthick to the Temple of Torm and have his body prepped for burial. The cleric Eshtani Doctry receives Farthick along with the cost for gentle repose of the corpse. Hearing of a rumor for potential adventure and rewards, group hikes to the point to investigate the use of a trebouche to destroy a pirate ice skiff. The watchguard is not aware of the activity but says that the city wall construction is continuing, having already been built to protect attacks from the dragonmere. Two trebouches account for the city’s defense along with two more already in design. Hitting a dead end with their lead the adventurers head towards the docks, finding the watering hole the Bitch’s Bed. They cross paths with Grau, a patron whose niece has fallen ill. With their connection to Torm, they decide to aid the despressed man. At Grau’s homestead they find Eshtani Doctry making a house call. The cleric of Torm believes the illness to be a derivative of Enterick Fever. The girl’s mother Tae Soldaldo is desperate to heal Brianna, so the group pulls together enough funds to finance a scroll with the spell to remove her disease. Eshtani successfully heals Brianna with the Soldaldo family’s eternal gratitude. The following morning the adventurers are summoned to the Temple of Torm. Disease has enveloped Teziir and the needy are swarming the divine pleading for help. The plague is being referred to as the Bloodveil. A dire Eshtani fears for his safety even as he travels the city to help others. Visibly shaken he hires the group to bring him to the City Watch where followers of the divine are assembling to address the Bloodveil. Arriving free of interlopers, they meet Field Marshall Crasidia Croft who has drafted Doctor Duvalus of Sembia. The doctor has arrived with his physicians upon request and joins the gathered clerics. Captain Redbeard also finds the adventurers and requests that they assist him. In the seedy section of Teziir lies Racker’s Alley. Redbeard has received reports that people are dumping diseased bodies there that may be contributing to the spread of the Bloodveil. At Racker’s Alley the group finds clear evidence implicating the owner of the tinkerer shop. During the investigation they uncover two undead vampires and destroy them. Amongst the remains of the shop keeper is a key to a lockbox that contains thieves’ tools and documents and patents for designs. The events warrant further investigation into the outbreak.
  • Encounters: city watchman along the city walls, near riot at the Temple of Torm, two vampire spawns
  • Achievements: removed the Bloodveil from Brianna Soldaldo, developed a strong ally with the Temple of Torm, networked with the City Watch, and discovered a potential connection between vampires and the plague.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A Debt (or Favor) to Teziir’s Redbeard – The Attack of the Goblin Raiders

  • Characters: Alrak, Belton Stoutshield, Dimak Cloudchaser Ogolakanu, Domollo Blue, Farthick, Qualen
  • NPCs: Sgt. Bartran, Captain Redbeard, Garsys the Merchant
  • Synopsis: After defeating the were-rat Vernon Archer, the group collects itself on the docks of Teziir. They are approached by the City Watch headed by Sgt. Bartran. Leading the inquiry Bartran’s attitude shifts from skepticism to reluctant acceptance upon verification of the party’s deeds. He orders the sequestered to the Smelted Horse until the morning when they must explain their activities to the Watch Captain Redbeard. The following morning Bartran’s expectations are met as the adventurers are escorted to the City Watch headquarters and are greeted by Redbeard. He has heard of their exploits and offers up an entirely different escapade to the group. A caravan mercenary survived an ambush from a tribe of goblins that looted the cargo which is desperately needed food stuffs for Teziir citizens. The mercenary produced a map that identifies the revine where the goblins returned to. As the party could earn the City’s good favor, Redbeard suggests that the merchant guild would hold the group in high esteem should they retrieve the goods and slay the trade interlopers. Under escort the group follows the map to the isolated revene and enters one of the several cave entrances. The cave network is only marginally explored before the group intercepts a cluster of six goblins. The bottleneck of the corridors prevents the full group from attacking, but the alarm is raised and another group of goblins attacks from an adjacent corridor. Splitting the party in two, Qualen, Farthick and Alrak challenge the initial goblins while Cloudchaser, Belton and Domollo Blue take on the flanking goblins. The massive battle is soon joined by additional goblins lead by an ogre skull crusher as the sounds of combat and dying goblins has alerted the tribe to an invasion. As Domollo Blue and Alrak are drawn away from Qualen and Farthick, the accompanying light source vanishes as well and the two are left in darkness. Farthick cannot stand against the multitude of goblins and falls to the floor just short of consciousness. The blinded Qualen horribly misses his intended target and lands a fatal blow on his own ally Farthick. Battling back to the others Quallen joins the on-going battle as the combined party forces the goblins to retreat. After a quick assessment and dispersed healing, the party persues their enemy. The encounter turns deadly as the goblins and ogre have been joined by the tribe’s warchief and shaman. Like water the adventurers spread to meet the demand as blades and axes fly. Again the combat shifts to the adventurers’ favor as the warchief is destroyed and the ogre falls. The bereaved shaman is pulled away in yet another retreat, the fallen comrade Alrak is revived and again the party gives chase, hoping to prevent the goblins from regrouping and healing. A locked door is found as Domollo Blue pulls out a rogue trick to give way to a bound and bleeding human. The man is Garsys, the merchant caravan leader, and he pleads for his freedom saying the goblins were planning on using him for ransom. Qualen and Domollo Blue convince the others to persue the goblins so that they cannot regroup. With reluctance the party continues into the chaotic caves on the condition that any additional forces encountered will force a retreat. Rounding a turn in the corridor, they spot the regrouped goblins, but this time reinforced with hobgoblins. It is enough to trigger the condition and the party withdraws from the chase, retrieving Garsys in the process. Returning to near the entrance, they spot the hidden door for the ogre’s personal quarters and loot it. The party hastely retreats from the revene with the saved Garsys and the fallen Farthick and force march back to Teziir. Belton does his best to cover their tracks with his spells but the odds are bad that the goblins know exactly where they are headed.
  • Encounters: goblin tribe, ogre skull crusher, goblin war chieftan, goblin shaman, hobgoblin cloister
  • Achievements: discover the hidden cave network housing raiding goblins, destroyed a significant portion of the tribe including their primary warriors, retrieved the kidnapped Garsys at the expense of one of their own comrades Farthick.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Earthome College and the Firehill Runestones

  • Characters: Aramir, Dorian, Forkbeard, Gallipolas, Jebeddo, Lazbin, Rathgillian
  • NPCs: Romualda the Librarian
  • Synopsis: Holding the cryptic writings of the Historian, the Defenders are at the crossroads. The scrolls identify the Firehill Runestones, documentation of historic dwarven lore, contained at the Earthome College in Cedarspoke. Discussing their choices, the group argues between seeking out these runestones and seeking out the destruction of the Shadow Lord, still captive of the Council of the Divine. The group has recovered Cedarspoke’s payment to the Wizards of Tendale and still has in their possession the bodies of the Divine Hammer. With these bargaining chips they may be able to procure the Shadow Lord and deliver their long sought after justice. Jebeddo offers a different strategy, at least one prior to negotiating with the Council of the Divine. He offers to return to Cedarspoke and investigate these Firehill Runestones before any negotiations take place. At least then they will know what the Historian’s scripture is leading them to. As the decision is being refined, Gallipolas spots a shadow swiftly moving across the snowy floor of the clearing. The bellowing black smoke rises from the forest canopy, providing proof of their conquest for miles around. Gallipolas readies himself as a huge white dragon with bolted on steel plates swoops towards the group releasing a cone of cold. The flyby attack is preceded by an announcement of defilement and breach of agreement by one Salricasa. The white dragon’s fear sweeps across the group, shaking them to their core. Spells are loosed and the group prepares for defense, as magical fire engulfs the attacking wyrm. The next attack proves near fatal for Jebeddo as the gnome imprisoned in the creature’s maw and flung into the nearby trees. But the dragon makes a critical mistake in hovering nearby the defenders. Despite the kick-up of debris, smoke and snow drift, the Defenders find their target and drop it to the snowy banks as it attempts to flee from the overpowering group. Speeding up the decision-making process the group teleports to outside visual limits of Cedarspoke. Jebeddo is joined by Forkbeard and Lazbin who alter their appearance to mask their presence from the guardsmen. The three gain admittance to the city and make for Earthome College where Jebeddo befriends the librarian Romualda. She is perturbed by their inquiries for the Firehill Runestones and leads them to an ancient wing of the library where many dwarf runestones are kept. A barren section indicates that the Firehill Runestones they seek are lost to time. Romualda speaks of the history of the dwarf commander Dessothal Firehill. Commander Firehill lead the dwarven armies against the giant-kind during the First Giant’s War. Tales of his success are epics as he almost single-handedly repelled the attack of the giant-kind and then pursued them back to their point of origin. Dessothal Firehill was the dwarven war strategist behind the ultimate victory over the giant-kind and saved the Dragon Coast. His relentlessness in vanquishing the forces of the giants became legendary as he was bent on their eradication from the lands. The giants fled to their mountains leading to the name of the mountain range, the Giant’s Run Mountains. Firehill pursued them into the mountains only to discover some lost secret that caused him to retreat back to his fortress Scarwall. Firehill took the runestones documenting his successes in combat against the giants, baffling war strategists. His runestones also are rumored to have documented his findings in the Giant’s Run Mountains. But Commander Firehill was so full of despair and grief that he cut off all contact from the region, sealed the gates of Scarwall, and cursed the surrounding lands. Romualda says that periodically foolish adventurers hear of the rumors and seek out the fabled treasures of Scarwall, only to disappear never to be heard of again. When the Black Legion attacked earlier this year, historians and war generals sought out the Firehill Runestones, only to find that the location of Scarwall was lost to legend and lore. Rumors within Cedarspoke say that druid and ranger parties were dispatched but never heard of again, and that the Army of Nature’s Wrath abandoned the effort. With a grave warning the elf librarian grabs Jebeddo and prays for him not to join the leagues of lost souls on a fool’s quest.
  • Encounters: Salricasa the Frostforged White Wyrm, Cedarspoke city guards, Romualda the elf librarian
  • Achievements: defeated the mansion guardian for the Wizards of Tendale, returned to Cedarspoke and infiltrated the city walls, and learned of the ancient rumors of the First Giant’s War.

Teziir’s Men of the Basalisk

  • Characters: Alrak, Belton Stoutshield, Crulamin, Dimak Cloudchaser Ogolakanu, Farthick, Qualen
  • NPCs: Domollo Blue, Jynn of the Kelemvor Sect
  • Synopsis: Domollo Blue has gathered a small band of adventurers at the Smelted Horse in Teziir. A secret contact has been initiated with the Men of the Basalisk, an underground guild rumored to be attempting to take down the Astorians, thieves guild of Teziir. Domollo Blue’s task is to gather a group capable of achieving greatness, but also of surviving. The first task of their initiation is to seek out a crazed were-rat that sought the destruction of Teziir through a series of politically motivated kidnappings and murders, as well as attempted take-overs of the ratcatchers’ guild, the garbage collectors’ guild, and the sewer workers’ guild. The were-rat, one Vernon Archer, was thwarted in his conquest but escaped capture. The target lives on a garbarge scow, frozen in place off the docks in the gulf. The band braves the winter stricken streets only to be targeted by a sniper and a watcher. Both escape and the group calls off the pursuit in lieu of grabbing the attention of the Teziiran guard. Down at the docks, the were-rat’s barge is easy to locate, stacked high with refuse and ill-smelling waste that even winter’s wind cannot disperse. They are immediately attacked by two giant cockroaches as they maneuver onto the barge. The guardians are destroyed after a lengthy melee, and the party proceeds to the lone shack nestled within the mountains of garbage. Through the trapped door, the band stumbles into the firing range of the were-rat, quickly surrounding their target and coordinating the attack to their advantage. Vernon Archer is well dug in, and succeeds in voraciously biting Belton Stoutshield on his casting arm. The were-rat is systematically destroyed before it can infect anyone else, as the group discovers the lair’s treasure, and the almost unmentionable decayed corpse of another female were-rat, propped and meticulously maintained inside a storage closet. Domollo Blue promises to report their success, and if they are still interested, periodically meet the group at the Smelted Horse for further tasks from the secret Men of the Basalisk.
  • Encounters: Astorian sniper, two giant cockroaches, trapped door, the were-rat Vernon Archer
  • Achievements: gained an ally one of the local blacksmiths, Potter Helm, stumbled upon a hidden sect of Kelemvor with the contact Jynn, drew the attention of Astorian assassins, defeated the crazed were-rat Vernon Archer, but Belton succumbed to the bite of the lycanthrope.

Friday, August 28, 2009

The Lighthouse Sting

  • Characters: Flannigan, Janora, Marlet, Sentalial, Vexander, X-Requinn
  • NPCs: Krullix, Carn
  • Synopsis: The crew of the Sea Serpent sails the vessel to Ice Flow, meeting Captain D’Ja Mode and his crew. They find Krullix who was dispatched to follow the group’s tracks. There has been a recall of guild members to Threshold. They Call Him Carn will rendezvous with the group back at the town, himself expediting his own travels via his centipede tattoo gifting him with the shadow walk. The rest ponder their options and decide to hire a skiff operator to take them to the shores of the Dragon Coast. Bracing against the frozen winds of the Dragonmere, the craft sails atop the ice-covered sea on massive metal arms, carrying the group quickly to their destination. After a long day’s travels they reach the shore line, only to find it obscured by magical mists. A lone lighthouse serves as a beacon for the travelers, but a ruse is quickly discovered. It isn’t the lighthouse they anticipated. The skiff runner has over-shot their goal by an unknown amount, and another lighthouse beckons. The illuminated shoreline is from a bonfire cobbled together by ten goblins, celebrating some ritual in dance and chant. Unconvinced the party ambushes the revelers and soundly defeats them before moving on to the lighthouse. One goblin survivor spills his guts and points to a green witch that commands his clan. The ruse has been in effect for quick some time, tricking vessels by having them run aground only to be smashed and looted. Surmising that more harm may come from the wicked trick, the group makes for the lighthouse to end the deception. Atop the lighthouse, more goblins ready their actions, spying the advancing group. Marlet rides atop her griffon summonded by the bronze statue, and begins plucking goblins from the parapet and hurling them towards the shoreline below. The rest enter the lighthouse and encounter three snake-like humanoids guarding the first floor, easily dispatching the threat.
  • Encounters: ten goblins, three gricks
  • Achievements: returned to the Dragon Coast and infiltrated the lighthouse

The Ruin of Chimera Cove

  • Characters: Carn, Flannigan, Janora, Marlet, Vexander, X-Requinn
  • NPCs: Azla, Sentalial
  • Synopsis: Deep within the magic-made complex that is the Chimera Cove, the group moves forward into the unknown, time now their biggest enemy. A water-logged chamber contains two undead seasworn warriors, bent on destroying the intruders. The battle is fierce as the seasworn attack from beneath the murky waters, dividing the party in two. Undaunted the party slays the creatures only to see them resurface momentarily, but eventually the blockade is put down and the group hurries towards the unknown location of the Terraken. The corridors below spiral around each other, but Marlet stays ahead of the pack, scouting potential threats. One chamber is invested with ooze mephitis, using highly polished silver to lure the unsuspecting. Drawing the adventurers into the champer, the mephits gargle with glee as Carns into a trap where a section of the ceiling collapses. The party focuses the attack on the spellcasting creature, quickly ending that threat before moving on to the remainders, who meet similar fates. Another chamber houses more water, but emerging from the depths is a seasworn captain of Sembia. She bears the emblems of a fleet captain from many decades prior, but the parlay is short as she sends a bolt of lightning bouncing through the group. Her post-life existence is quickly ended, drawing a close to too many years of undeath. Marlet discovers the crux of Chimera Cove, the champer referred to as Fluxhold. An ancient elder water elemental knows it is only moments from freedom as the ancient hold on it ended with the life of Poltur. The water elemental is only too helpful to the group directing them to trapped chambers holding the Terraken. Racing against time, the group proceeds through the underground channels to reach the pit of the Terraken, rising waters bringing it ever closer to freedom. A plan is devised to bypass the Terraken and retrieve the amulet capable of controlling the undead beast. X-Requinn volunteers for the task and, after receiving many blessings from Vexander, the sea elf disappears into the murky waters. Several minutes pass, bringing the water levels even higher, when the floating Terraken is submerged, and a flying X-Requinn rendezvous with the group. Fleeing to Fluxhold, the adventurers are given the route to bypass the underground caverns and return to high port. Sentalial has figured out the locks to retrieve the Silver Reign from highport, and Flannigan quickly claims the prize for his personal sacrifices. Escaping the hidden port in tact, the group sails to the small village of Chimera Cove and deed the controlling amulet over to the village elders. They will see to the destruction of the Terraken and return to Cormyr to reintegrate with the modern world. The adventurers begin the long return to the Dragon Coast with Flannigan doing his best to convince his crew of his rightful command.
  • Encounters: two seasworn warriors, two ooze mephitis, one ooze mephit sorcerer, seasworn captain, ancient elder water elemental, terraken.
  • Achievements: retrieved the amulet to control the terraken, returned the control to the rightful Cormyrean heirs, and freed the sailing vessel quickly redubbed the Sea Serpent.

Myth Drannor - The Demon Sword Seaker

  • Characters: Dak, Hlinthi, Karne, Pardonei, Softfoot, V.L., Zaytheon
  • NPCs: Jane
  • Synopsis: The party emerges from the tunnels below to mighty ruins overgrown with thick vegetation. What was once Myth Drannor is now a vast region of forgotten or ignored history with a cover of dense foliage. A large, relatively flat commons is flanked on either side by two buildings and headed by a mighty pyramid. Flashes of light reveal that the party is not alone. Breaking into small teams the group moves swiftly across the commons to investigate. Before they can reach the pyramid a mighty demon springs from another plane and challenges the party. But the demon is not the one who drew the party’s attention. A mysterious wizardess conjures an attack against the demon, assisting the group as the warriors wade in to attack. Towering over the commons the demon retreats after grappling Dak and V.L. The wizardess addresses the group introducing herself as Jane and directs them to the temple to retrieve their comrades. Again with their boots to the ground the party reaches the temple and envades, bringing the battle to the interior. The demon is defeated after the adventurers take advantage of their elevated position. Opening a dialog with Jane, the group discovers that the demon has a partner and that the two have been attempting to reassemble the “sword”. Each component of the sword is within the three buildings but the wizardess warns against completing the task sought by the demons. If they are to survive another venture into the abandoned city of Myth Drannor, they must regroup and rest.
  • Encounters: huge demon
  • Achievements: gained an ally with Jane the Wizard, defeated the demon and prevented the reassembly of the sword.

The Great Ball of Lightning, Part II

  • Characters: Hlinthi, Rog, Roywyn, Trebbor, Wicasa
  • NPCs: Sky Captain Quint
  • Synopsis: Following the split of the adventurers, Rog, Wicasa, and Quint move the volcano shaft being protected by dwarf warriors of the Small Canyon clan. The egress leads to an underground river which eventually and unnaturally climbs uphill before leading to a set of massive stone doors. Adorning the portals are images of the god Cyric, who replaced Bane during the Time of Troubles. Staring down the Prince of Lies, the Black Son, the three adventurers open the doors revealing a circular chamber. The river spirals into a whirlpool at the center of the room, but the group’s presence is detected as a massive humanoid with elephant features emerges. The battle is treacherous, but is eventually joined by Hlinthi, Roywyn and Trebbor from a shaft leading to the surface above. Again the chamber is alight with battle, and ultimately the guardian is defeated. The Skeletal Ruins above seem to be the source of the ball of lightning phenomenon. The group begins moving from the central fountain to explore the ruins, discovering a hall of statues surrounding a vase. Embedded within the vase is a gem of blue lightning. Below is the river of water, but above is a floating river of fire! Further exploration leads to a brief encounter with two humanoid guardians, each containing a massive toothy maw. They are dispatched, leaving the mystery of the great ball of lightning unsolved.
  • Encounters: Two sonic watchers, an elephant-humanoid guardian
  • Achievements: investigated the Skeletal Ruins, discovered a potential source of the ball of lightning, linked to strange elemental phenomenon.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Icy Plunge

  • Characters: Nobanion, Vall, Jebeddo, Krullix
  • NPCs: Gribbold, Los Calzo, Aldila, Hoinnia (Tiefling), Puennoki (Green Hag), Chirkka (Annis)
  • Synopsis: Nobanion, Vall, and Jebeddo arrive at Gribbold’s shop to purchase much needed supplies. The recent winter storms have slowed down shipments along the trade route through Threshold, but some items are available. While negotiating “friend prices”, Krullix arrives in a bit of a huff. He said he went to Los Calzo to see if Dak’s mithral shirt is complete. He informs the trio that Aldila, Los Calzo’s friend and caretaker, is worried something terrible has befallen him. The four adventurers decide to pay a visit to the town tinker. The townsfolk are aware of the tinkering that goes on in Los Calzo’s workshop beneath his home, so it is not unusual for him to busy himself for a tenday without so much as an appearance in town. Aldila looks after him during these times. Upon arrival, Aldila greets them and informs them that she has not seen him in almost two tendays. Aldila leads them to the stairway that descends to the workshop. Recent rumors around town tell of the strange locks appearing on door. Nobanion encourages Krullix to open the door before he breaks it down. Krullix is able to determine the best approach to open each of the three locks. Jebeddo seems nervous at the sight of the Blade Golem guarding the only path to the workshop, but they are able to pass without any trouble. Continuing down the hallway to the workshop, they spy an ominous red-orange glow coming from beneath the door. Vall listens at the door but upon hearing nothing, opens it to discover an activated portal. Vall searches the room for clues to Los Calzo’s whereabouts, finding a journal with scribbles regarding birds. But the name Peunnoki is scribbled in the margin. Nobanion questions Aldila who informs them that Puennoki is a bird collector who resides in a tower near the Thunder Peaks mountain range. Jebeddo examines the scene within the portal, surmising that it is indeed near the Thunder Peaks. Taking the lead, Jebeddo passes through the portal, followed by Vall and Nobanion, with Krullix taking up the flank. From their vantage point they see what appears to be a medium structure shooting up from a frozen lake, 100 yards from the shoreline. They carefully traverse the ice, but encounter a fair size moat surrounding the tower. It appears the rest of the tower lies beneath the frozen lake, with only the top portion at water level. A female humanoid in a hooded cloak greets them, announcing herself as Hoinnia, and allows them entrance via a rope ladder. Inquiries regarding Los Calzo confirm that he is visiting with Puennoki in the lower level of the tower. The party is able to see through Hoinnia’s ruse and advise her to bring Los Calzo to verify his well-being. She leaves and closes the door behind her. Vall makes his way to the door and picks up the sound of heavy footsteps and battle cries. The party prepares itself for what is behind the door. Hoinnia and two ettins appear in the doorway, brandishing their morning stars. Vall’s fists are a blur as they strike the closest enemy causing it to howl in pain. Jebeddo unleashes magic missiles into the other ettin and Krullix fires his crossbow with reckless abandon. An enraged Nobanion beheads the lead ettin, with the second ettin falling soon after. Darkness falls upon the party as they engage their final enemy. With a stroke of luck, the flat of Nobanion’s blade strikes Hoinnia and causes the dark veil to fall. Vall begins to hogtie the tiefling and secures her to a fallen ettin. Upon questioning Hoinnia, the party learns the other tower’s residents are now on the alert. The foursome drinks recently acquired water breathing and protection from cold potions before descending into the frigid waters. At the bottom of the stairs a swollen, wooden door blocks their progress. A cooperative effort proves no match for this simple door. A foyer leads to a set of double doors that easily surrender to Nobanion’s brute strength. The room is filled with blocks of ice, each with varying sizes of birds and each tethered to the floor. A green hag is admiring her collection, but her ogre companion appears perplexed at the intruders. Equipped with a long spear, the ogre begins tapping his weapon on the stone floor. Krullix fires his crossbow at the merrow, but the water inhibits the bolt from finding its target. Vall manages to wrestle the long spear from the merrow. Jepeddo unleashes a scorching ray, which instantly produces a turbulent arc of bubbling, superheated water on the way to its targets. Unable to discern words underwater, the party turns to hand signals to surround their opponents. Grabbing the long spear from Vall, Nobanion plunges it into the merrow sending it roaring in pain. Vall is able to understand the words spoken by the green hag, Puennoki and warns of a spell being cast. Just as before, the lights go down. Even with all participants blinded, an all out slugfest ensues. Vall’s fists pummel into the hag. Jepeddo’s flame blast produces an arc of superheated of water. Nobanion continues to poke at the darkness to find his target. Vall is able to pick up a final cry from the hag as she yells out “Chirkka”, a name perhaps, and the dark veil lifts yet again. The party is astonished they were able to defeat such a powerful spell caster. Not knowing what else awaits them below, they retrieve the tiefling and entice her to tell them how to get to the fifth and bottom level of the tower. Hoinnia advises them to gather stones before starting down the staircase that leads to the bottom level. On reaching the third level, stones are put at the door leading into the stairwell to prevent access to the stairs. On the fourth level, the stairway door is easily opened. A small foyer has a door directly ahead and one on either side. Hoinnia suggests to place stones on the side doors as she opens the remaining door. An odd-looking dome of oiled leather fills most of this chamber. Engulfed by a big net lashed to some rings in the floor, the mass seems to be held in place. But the whole dome strains upward against its binds. With a little more investigation the group discovers the dome holds some sort of air pocket on this floor. As a light shines from beneath the dome the air bubble’s oily surface forms a stable air-water interface, allowing one to enter or exit the bubble without disturbing the arrangement. Nobanion goes berserk, jumps through bubble, and lands with a ground-shaking thump. The others follow suit, finding themselves on dry land once again. The room is occupied by two more ettins carrying what appears to be a wooden box. Caught off guard, their package drops to the floor, splintering into many pieces. The contents are revealed; inside is a small creature completely encased in ice. The other occupant of the room introduces herself as Chirkka who states that this is her tower, and that all who enter shall be encased in ice for eternity. Recognizing their primary objective lying on the floor, the group swings into action. Vall unleashes his fury on an ettin knocking it senseless. Attempting to draw their morning stars, three ettins succumb to Jebeddo’s grease spell, falling to the hard, stone floor. Unable to obtain a sure footing, the party continuously strikes them down. Still enraged, Nobanian deals a deathblow to an ettin as Vall and Jebeddo search the remaining intact bodies to collect the spoils. Jebeddo uses a flame spell to accelerate the thawing of the small creature, who indeed turns out to be Los Calzo. He is in a daze and semiconscious, but alive. The party escorts Los Calzo and Hoinnia out of the tower and back to the portal, with a final warning to Hoinnia. She must leave this plane and never return, or face the most severe of consequences. They provide her with basic supplies, and release her. The five enter the portal back to Threshold as the patient Aldila is there to welcome them home, and Los Calzo pushes a hidden stone button that closes the portal. The unfrozen gnome heeds their advice not to travel to strange places without proper security. Los Calzo has witnessed their aid first hand yet again and promises to recruit them in the future. Ever thankful, Aldila sees the party out praising their actions. The four wary adventurers head over to The Verse to unwind and speak privately. With a new way to travel to the Thunder Peaks, what other adventures await?
  • Encounters: Merrow Warrior (Aquatic Ogre) (1), Ettins (4), Deep waters of a frozen lake
  • Achievements: rescued Los Calzo from the tower, and utilized the portal in Los Calzo’s workshop

The Great Ball of Lightning, Part I

Roywyn has been in seclusion at an undisclosed, secret location in order to make a greater wondrous magic item, gloves of dexterity. Some of her companions believed she was given haven in one of Gallipolas’s hidden groves where he has been known to craft items too. After nearly three weeks, thousands of gold pieces and some of her precious life-energy, the bard is able to create the special gloves. Upon ending her seclusion she receives news that the Bocklesdin Brothers have been commissioned by High Priest Hlinthi Crystalfist and Priestess Nilmith to build a temple in dedication to Garl Glittergold. She rushes to her old friend’s side in order to help his congregation in anyway she can.

Hlinthi speaks with Roywyn about crafting magical boots so that he may be quicker on the battlefield in order to better get to the wounded. “Curse me short kicking stumps!” After discussing this they decide to wait until they can get more resources together and garner more power in order to help fashion the greatest of all boots, those of speed.

The Sky Captain Quint flies into Threshold on his gnome-made flying ship. After a bit of fanfare and fireworks he lands his ship near the bazaar. With entourage in tow, he heads to the Verse looking for Trizoon in order to discuss some bizarre meteorological phenomenon he witnessed over the Giant’s Plain. “Where is my exuberant friend Trizoon this night?” Although he can’t find the bard, he sees two gnomes, Hlinthi and Roywyn, sharing a meal with pints of beer, singing and laughing all the while. Quint smiles and waves to them as he approaches, eventually sweeping into a low bow before joining them, “Well met to you friends!” After exchanging pleasantries and a few beers more, he shares his story about his latest travels with them.

“I have sailed from one end of Faerun to the other and I’ve never seen anything like the great ball of lightning that hovers over the Giant’s plain,” Quint tells them. Furthermore, he explains that this has been a reoccurring phenomenon and he needs some help investigating the remote region. “Great balls of lighting appearing in my skies pose a threat to my ship, my crew and my ladies this cannot stand,” Quint continues. He offers to fund an exploration of the skeletal ruins that he found in the area of the lightning as it is an expedition that only heroes can undertake. The gnomes explain to Quint that Trizoon is conducting a night-long ceremony with Priestess Nilmith in order to consecrate the new temple. Quint does however, manage to capture their interest and convince the heroes to explore the phenomenon. He insists upon a daybreak departure, but this strikes the gnomes as a bit strange as Quint is rarely up early considering his nightly exploits.

Quint also secures the services of the dwarf barbarian Trebbor Smallcanyon to serve as the party’s scout. In addition he enlists both Wicasa and Rog to round out the talents of the party. They plan to rendezvous with some of Trebbor’s kinfolk in the tunnels of the Giant’s Run Mountains on the western border. There they’ll set up camp in order to view the nightly phenomenon over the Giant’s Plain from the superior vantage point. Soon after midnight a giant ball of blue lightning appears, nearing 100 feet in diameter, and hovered hundreds of feet above the plain and several miles to the southwest of their camp. The ball flickers like a giant firefly and rains hundreds of small bolts of energy toward the ground. Although this goes on for only a half hour before the ball winks out of sight, the companions are able to pinpoint its rough position and take off in the Sky Ship at daybreak with Roywyn, Trebbor and Hlinthi. However they go without Rog and Wicasa as they were sent to approach the ruins from a secret tunnel system from below. They will rendezvous with their companions at the ruins.

Quint drops within fifty yards of the ruins which they pinpointed as the ball’s rough location. Once the heroes are ready Quint flies his ship back to their camp to await the heroes’ signals when evacuation is needed. Quint had given the heroes a set of Murty’s Magical Markers which were special magical lights that he used for landing his ship at night or inclement weather.

Hlinthi casts clerical protective spells protection from evil to add to their muscle, Trebbor and blesses the party with the favor of Garl Glittergold. Hlinthi then activates his ring of invisibility while Trebbor and Roywyn down invisibility potions and sneak into the Skeletal Ruins. “Its not dwarf construction so it’s no wonder why the ruins became skeletal,” Trebbor proclaims. The gnomes agree that the inferior construction was likely human-made. “The ruins aren’t even a century old and already crumbled? Hlinthi grumbled.

But one thing they all feel is that the ruins’ eyes looking for them even though they were invisible. On both the sides of the ruins along the remnants of the east and west outer walls, they see two red-skinned, hairless humanoid creatures skulking about standing approximately seven feet tall, but it would be taller if it stood erect. They move silently and swiftly, making their way towards the location where the part now held on the east wall. The combination of short legs, long arms, and stooped posture causes its hands to drag on the ground. One creature runs at them but does not leap from the wall halting just above their position.

It is then that they get a good look at the creature. It has massive shoulders and an enormous chest, which tapers down to a narrow waist and hips. Its head is triangular and its neck attaches near the top of its head, causing its leering, toothy face and pointed chin to hang below its shoulders. With eyes ablaze it lets loose a booming shout which resembles a loud, rasping cough. The shout becomes a sonic blast that makes the party’s very bones shake causing deep pain in their bodies.

But this attack did not ruin their invisibility or other spells. Roywyn is quick to act leveling her staff of frost at the creature looming above them and lets loose a cone of cold freezing the creature, blistering its face and red skin. Hlinthi casts his first healing spells to mend their wounds as Trebbor spies the second creature closing fast from the other side of the ruins. Trebbor readies her dwarven urgosh to take it out, but it too unleashes a painful sonic shout. This time the heroes resist its stunning affect. It continues to run blindly to their position where Trebbor, springing from her invisibility, makes short work of the monster.

The creature on the wall continues its attacks trading shouts for Roywyn’s staff of frost. Hlinthi administers healing throughout the melee. Roywyn breaks into a battle song that galvanizes Trebbor a she chops and dices. Soon Roywyn provides the party with a haste spell and in no time at all the second creatures is killed before it can flee.

Just then the heroes feel the ground tremor as a cloud of sand shoots into the air announcing the giant stone doors that fly open from the ground near a dried up fountain. The tremors continue as something rumbles out. The creature is humanoid in basic shape, standing nine feet tall and weighing a ton. Its hands appear oversized for its body and are tipped with claws. Its head is similar to a small-eared elephant’s head, having a mouth filled with tiny teeth, small rheumy red eyes, and a long, coiling trunk tipped with a long, thin spike. With eyes filled with malice it turns toward the companions. “It doesn’t look like a giant, but I’m gonna chop it down anyways!” Trebbor yells as she charges the new foe.

Friday, July 10, 2009

The Race Against the Terraken

  • Characters: Azla, Carn, Flannigan, Janora, Marlet, X-Requinn
  • Synopsis: The party explores High Port, discovering the decrepit quarters of the hobgoblins where three more lie in wait. The ambush is quickly quelled as Sentalial returns to the cave entrance to investigate the remaining hobgoblin guard. While venturing beneath the lock, Flannigan takes a terrible tumble down the steep stairs, nearly crippling himself in the process. But down below, the swashbuckler makes a discovery. His most recent adversary Poltur lies on the dried channel bed, his body twisted in impossible positions, a look of astonishment still etched into his face. Continuing along the underground channel, the group reaches a landing with double iron doors. Beyond the channel is blocked by a cave-in. As the mechanism for the doors is investigated, a trap is sprung and spikes descend from a hidden niche in the ceiling slicing Flannigan and Marlet. X-Requinn solves the conundrum by casting knock on doors, exposing another corridor and water-logged chamber. From beyond a hideous three-headed creature leaps at the group breathing an acidic burst on the adventurers. From old tales and myths, the creature can only be a chimera, but the beast is deformed with an unnatural black, leathery hide and features smoothed over by slime and over-exposure to water. Carn engages the beast, grappling the creature and occupying its direct attention. Janora and Marlet flank the beast as Azla and X-Requinn loose scorching rays, blasting the creature to annihilation. The wounded group spins to find that the iron doors were not disabled as the spikes retract and the door shuts. On their side of the doors, there are no levers to open the iron barricades. With no other option the group presses on, finding yet another flooded chamber. Marlet peers into the darkness, and sees the resemblance of a quarters submerged by the briny waters. But something stirs below, sending soft ripples across the water’s surface. The party has at least one more obstacle to overcome as time runs short to best the Terraken.
  • Encounters: three hobgoblin guards, trapped iron doors, sea-sworn chimera
  • Achievements: Confirmed that Poltur was killed, journeyed into the complex and reached the Dragon Isle, defeated the trapped doors and gained access to the caves, and killed the chimera guardian.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Crainich Makes a Deal

  • Characters: Dak, Hlinthi, Karne, Pardonei, Softfoot, V.L.
  • NPCs: Crainich
  • Synopsis: A celebration is underway for the groundbreaking of the Chapel of Garl Glittergold. Hlinthi’s and Trizoon’s relations with the gnome priestesses from Burrock have yielded an unexpected result. The gnomes recovered a hidden reserve and are financing the chapel’s construction, having returned to Burrock leaving only Nilmith at Threshold. Partying into the early morning, only a few guild members make it back to the guild hall. With winter’s onset, the days early hours are still dark when multiple explosions rock the upper levels of the guild hall. The investigation finds the source behind the locked door of Crainich. The isolationist doesn’t respond to the inquiries as Softfoot takes to dismantling the three locks. From within a deep voice speaking infernal booms loudly speaking of greater numbers and “it takes two to lose”. Crainich’s sanctuary is well-protected as Softfoot steps aside for Karne and Dak. Brute force wins the day yet again as the pair breaks into the wizard’s room to find the drow in chains at the feet of a burning infernal creature twice the size of a normal man. The room is utterly destroyed with broken glass and shards of wood everywhere. Heat is prominent, spreading throughout and making the room oppressive. Dak and Karne rush in to save their sometimes companion, receiving ranged support from those outside. The defense of the guild hall is going well when the party is split as a wall of fire separates the combatants from those in the hallway. Pardonei targets the extra planar attacker with a dismissal spell. It vanishes from sight only to reappear and renew its taunts against the party. The attack is unrelenting until finally the efreeti vanishes leaving only a chained Crainich, his annihilated quarters and a pool of rippling blue flame. Crainich is cryptic and short-coming in his exploits but Pardonei is able to extract details behind his scheme. After retrieving the enslaved genie from the pouch he accumulated from adventuring in Teziir, the drow wizard forced the efreeti to open up a portal to Myth Drannor, a fallen elven city now overrun with denizens of the Underdark, walkers of the graveyard, and drow returning to the surface. His plans including vacating the guild hall and joining other drow exiles in Myth Drannor. Once the efreeti opened the portal it reversed positions with Crainich, enslaving him. During the investigation Softfoot and V.L. explore the pool of blue flame, eventually jumping through the opened portal. The rest follow to find an underground pool and a shrine to the goddess Mystra. Crainich’s betrayal to the guild hall is judged as Pardonei transports him back to the guild hall to be reviewed later; they cannot risk his waffling loyalty. As the group begins to explore the shrine they are attacked by an undead wizard loosing spells from down the hall. Working quickly, Karne challenges the creature head-on as the others catch up and flank the attacker. Its demon-red eyes fade after the final blow, leaving the group looking down the dark corridor into the unknown.
  • Encounters: Efreeti, Undead Wizard
  • Achievements: protected the guild hall from destruction, saved Crainich from slavery, learned of Myth Drannor, and secured the portal between the Dragon Coast and Myth Drannor.

Oppol Strikes Back

  • Characters: Belton Stoutshield, Cheynar, Dimak Cloudchaser Ogolakanu & Snow the wolf, Domollo Blue, Fash Daergel, JadeBlade
  • NPCs: Thuldrin Kreed
  • Synopsis: Wessalen Arturia of Teziir, Paladin of Torm, has sent an envoy to Threshold to assess the town’s need for a shrine or temple to his god. More importantly, the envoy has brought along much needed supplies. The early winters and prolonged war has sapped the town of its resources; Threshold is starving to death. Part of the envoy’s protection includes mercenaries from Teziir, Fash Daergel, Belton Stoutshield, and Cloudchaser. One last item is a sealed letter addressed to Dak and Cheynar of the Adventurers Guild of Threshold. The letter finds only Cheynar; it is from Wicasa Wakan. Under the guise of the potter Wolsyn, he has been indicted as conspiring against the Lumber Consortium of Teziir. He needs them to clear his name. Cheynar and JadeBlade return with the envoy and meet with Domollo Blue who says that Thuldrin Kreed, Gavel of the Lumber Consortium is paying adventurers a massive sum of coin to investigate one of Teziir’s main lumber camps that was attacked. If they can find evidence, any “evidence” at all, that Wolsyn was the responsible party or even tangentally connected, there is a bonus for their troubles. The group departs for the lumber camp only to walk into a complete and utter ambush. The entire camp is rigged with traps, undead kobolds, and huge stone-devouring beetle. Managing to survive half of the ambush, the party collects themselves and spots the kobold leader fleeing into the woods, praising the name “Oppol”. Deciding not to give chase, the group returns to Teziir to regroup and draft several others to track the kobolds back to their hideout.
  • Encounters: kobold zombies, chariot beetle, kobold warriors, undead kobold leader, centipede swarm, crossbow trap, log-pile trap
  • Achievements: discovered that the kobolds are from the Black Spear tribe and that the tribe’s leader Oppol has returned from the dead.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Pelastour’s Hidden Cove

  • Characters: Azla, Carn, Flannigan, Janora, Marlet, Sentalial, X-Requinn
  • NPCs: Elder Marko, Elder Kenrick, Elder Bristol, Poltur
  • Synopsis: The village elders bring the adventurers into their private quarters and divulge the secret of Chimera Cove. Long ago, a Sembian merchant financed the creation of an undead dragon turtle called the Terraken. Using an amulet to control the undead creature, the merchant attacked rival vessels in the Sea of Fallen Stars, particularly targeting Cormyrean ships. Eventually the amulet fell into the hands of the Sembian government who issued it to various captains throughout the years. A harper agent from Cormyr named Pelastour accepted the dangerous task of destroying the Terraken. With a Red Wizard of Thay, Pelastour magically created a hidden cove in the Pirate Isles to strike out from. He spent years perfecting the caves in hopes that he would eventually be the target of the Terraken, and would lure the creature into his complex where he would kill it. In the event of failure the One Who Harps crafted an intricate magical trap to keep the Terraken from ever leaving. Pelastour took his devout followers and established the village to protect the cove’s secret and told them of the ritual to lower the waters of Chimera Cove to access the hidden port. According to plan, the undead dragon turtle did target Pelastour’s ship the Scythe, and chased it into the hidden cove, destroying it and Pelastour’s treasure in a ferocious battle. Pelastour and the wizard were killed in the ensuing chase, but not before trapping the Terraken. The cove’s magic prevented any scrying, and thus prevented the Sembians from commanding the Terraken. The keeper of the amulet came to Chimera Cove but never returned after entering the hidden complex, sealing the amulet and the undead dragon turtle within the trap. The village continued to guard the secret, or “treasure”, of Chimera Cove for more than two tenyears, until Pelastour’s grandson came of age and, betraying his legacy, decided to sell the secret to a Sembian baron. After the adventurer’s presented Poltur’s letter and the items necessary to perform the ritual, the elders surmise that Poltur has indeed betrayed the village and will release the Terraken. The group agrees to stop Poltur, and if they can destroy the dragon turtle, the Plight of the Pirate Isles, they can keep whatever treasures they find. After sailing to the center of the cove and performing the ritual, they are attacked by a giant octopus but force it to flee after dismembering four of its tentacles. Poltur’s hobgoblin troops greet the party at the mouth of the now-exposed cave, mistaking them for the humans Poltur previously summoned. Inside the group is lead to a massive underground lock that houses the pristine ship the Silver Reign. Delusions of grandeur flood Flannigan’s mind as he has already mentally claimed the vessel. Standing on the ships plank a man identified as Poltur instructs the new arrivals into the ship’s hull in order to complete the ritual. Goading Flannigan into a duel, Poltur retracts into the ships hull pulling Carn and Flannigan with him. Janora and Sentalial engage the two remaining hobgoblin guards while the others scramble onto the deck of the Silver Reign. The trap is sprung as Poltur escapes, leaving them three mimics to deal with. On the deck the real threat emerges as a hellcat appears and throttles X-Requinn. The chaos continues but the newest member of the group the war mage Azla targets Poltur, catching him with a lightening bolt. From the stern of the ship a mysterious ghost manifests and silently watches the battle unfold. Poltur does a drastic escape attempt, but seconds before his escape the relentless Azla blasts Poltur again. The dashing and overconfident man’s life spews out as he topples over the rear wall of the High Port into oblivion below. The group surrounds the hellcat but not before Flannigan is pounced upon and brought to death’s door. X-Requinn revives the fallen swashbuckler, but the Hellcat retreats to the ship’s hull to finish off the trapped party members below. The battle is fierce as the hellcat blends into the magical light of the ship and disappears. But the war-hardened group is quick to gain the upper hand. Sentalial draws his holy sword and brings the devil to its knees. Begging for them to spare its life, the hellcat promises to divulge the secrets of the caves below. The paladin of Torm brings his sword down with the might of his god, splitting the devil in two equal parts, spilling blood to the hull floor. The ghost that has been observing manifests in front of the party and tells them that the situation is worse. With the death of Poltur, the magicks holding the Terraken in its trap have been released. An ancient water elemental is now free and the waters of Chimera Cove are returning. Within the hour the undead dragon turtle will be free, and without a controller, the Terraken will destroy anything and everything in its path. Pelastour says that he can guide them through his traps but there are other horrors within the cove that they must defeat to reach the dragon turtle. The amulet to control the beast is in the same oubliette that traps the Terraken. The might of the creature is too great and it is hopeless to fight it directly. Getting the amulet may be the only way to keep it from escaping, from rampaging the Sea of Fallen Stars, and from falling back into the hands of Sembia. Outside Flannigan inspects the ship but is drawn to a door built into the south wall of the High Port. A quick listen reveals stirring from within.
  • Encounters: giant octopus, three hobgoblin guards, Poltur, three mimics, hellcat
  • Achievements: performed the Ritual of Chimera Cove, defeated the giant octopus Hand of the Deep, fooled Poltur’s guards, discovered the Silver Reign, defeated the bound-devil hellcat Zasril and his minions, killed Poltur releasing the ancient water elemental commanding the waters of Chimera Cove, and received the dire warning from the ghost of Pelastour.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

The Secret of Chimera Cove

  • Characters: Carn, Flannigan, Janora, Sentalial, X-Requinn
  • NPCs: Captain D’Ja Mode, Firstmate Helmswoman Stephae, Navigator No-Thumbs Qwerty, Quartermaster Pussy Terro, Cook Seagull, Bosun Deeno, Lookout Greenboy
  • Synopsis: Captain D’Ja Mode introduces his crew of his vessel The Iron Maiden and embarks on the tenday journey to the Pirate Isles. The sailing is swift, but the horizon is ominous as the dark clouds promise stormy seas ahead. Flannigan’s promise of weather control goes overboard as the heavy weather strikes on the sixth day. The adventurers convert to deckhands as Deeno barks orders to clear the deck of ballast and non-essentials. Then the sails are taken down in lieu of raw manpower. As the ship is cleared and the deck battened down, the entire crew shifts below to use oars to power the ship through the storm. Come morning, the work is still not done. The ship’s deck is encased in ice requiring everyone to spend the morning and afternoon breaking the rigging and mast arm free from the dangerously top-heavy condition. Arriving at the Pirate Isles after the accurately predicted tenday, Qwerty daftly navigates the Spoon Waterway to the island of Telfar. The legendary Chimera Cove is on the eastside of the isle and Captain D’Ja Mode is convinced to delay his departure, waiting off-shore only until morning. The group lands just south of the cove but before any proper investigation is made, they are attacked by another group of adventurers. The battle is swift but victory is owned by the Adventurers Guild of Threshold. Looting the bodies, they find correspondence from one Poltur “the Accursed” requesting a cleric adorned with a holy symbol of Umberlee, the Bitch Queen of the Depths and 30 feet of silver line. The werebear Targas introduces himself to the party, depositing his contribution to the battle, the body of a Sembian baron. Targas relays that his village is responsible for protecting Chimera Cove, but has been sequestered by Poltur and his hobgoblin guard. Poltur, the grandson of Pelastour the founder of the village, seeks to release the “terrible treasure” of Chimera Cove for Sembian gold. Lead by Sentalial, the party impersonates the dead mercenaries and fools the hobgoblin guards into gaining entry to the village’s boathouse where the 24 villagers are held captive. Sentalial’s ruse is fleeting as the paladin leads the attack, resulting in dead and surrendered hobgoblins as well as freed villagers. Targas is accepted back into the community after a prolonged exile and the elders pull the group aside to explain the severity of the most recent events. The villagers are tasked to protect the secret of Chimera Cove, the secret that Poltur now threatens which could let the corrupt Sembia control all of the Sea of Fallen Stars and result in the deaths of hundreds if not thousands. This is the secret that the elders are entrusting the group with in hopes that they can intervene.
  • Encounters: violent winter storms of the Pirate Isles, Poltur’s mercenaries, Targas the werebear, 8 hobgoblin warriors
  • Achievements: survived sailing the Sea of Fallen Stars, discovered the elements of the ritual to lower the waters of Chimera Cove, freed the captured villagers, and restored Targas’ honor.

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Treasure of Chimera Cove

  • Characters: Bixtbie, Carn, Flannigan, Janora, Sentalial, X-Requinn
  • NPCs: Wicasa Wakan, Captain Rumjack, Captain D’Ja Mode, Teldar, Paladin of Torm Wessalen Arturia
  • Synopsis: They Call Him Carn arrives in Threshold and recruits several guild members to help him retrieve an artifact of great importance. They must travel to the Pirate Isles to the island called Telfar, home of Chimera Cove. Because to the current political turmoil in Westgate, They Call Him Carn has redirected his route to Teziir where he has heard rumors of a vessel capable of traversing the frozen Dragonmere. Departing for Teziir the group finds their journey crossing the frozen Dragon Coast long and cold, but finally reaches their destination, the wall-less city Teziir. A brief stop at Wicasa Wakan’s pottery shop yields the needed results. The man they are looking for is Captain Rumjack who’s at the Smelted Horse. Wicasa offers to sweeten the deal for They Call Him Carn’s crew. If they can derive the method Captain Rumjack uses to power his vessel, the potter will pay them 500 gold pieces. Moving to the Smelted Horse, the group finds the unmistakeable Rumjack who cannot take them to the Pirate Isles. A trip to the center of the Sea of Fallen Stars during the winter season would be suicide. But the man does offer voyage to the seasonal port city of Ice Flow, a collection of vessels and docks moored together at the edge of the iced-over Dragonmere. Surely they can find a fool there to take them east to the Pirate Isles. While enjoying the experience that is the Smelted Horse, the festivities are interrupted by three drunkards causing problems and verbally assaulting the group. The situation resolves itself as quickly as it began, and the group delivers the unconscious men to the city watch for processing. In the morning the rendezvous with Rumjack goes off without a hitch and the group experiences the magical properties of Rumjack’s vessel, the Wavecutter. Sumberged beneath the ice of the Dragonmere it is only a half-day’s journey to the port at Ice Flow. As soon as Rumjack deposits his passengers, the port is in total chaos. One of the docked ships is under attack by a massive sea worm. The captain screams to any who might listen offering a reward for the killing blow to the creature. The adventurers race onto the deck of the ship and engage the mighty serpent. Several of the combatants are snatched into the beast’s mouth as it takes successive blows. Just before it succumbs to the multitude of attacks, the quelzarn swallows Sentalial whole. Jenora slays the creature with a stealthy strike sending the sea monster plunging into the icy waters of the Sea of Fallen Stars. The group works together to cut the paladin loose, saving their comrade. Not as promised the captain of the ship comes up short for the reward monies, but Flannigan barters a trip to the island of Telfar assuring the captain that they can control the weather and thus expediting their trip. Convinced Captain D’Ja Mode introduces himself to his new sea-worthy crew.
  • Encounters: 3 Astorian thugs, quelzarn
  • Achievements: reached Ice Flow and secured a ship to take them to the Pirate Isles