Tales of Alentha

Downtime #3 (One Month)
Everyone has a hobby

Jordan’s Crossing and surrounding area

The month between the liberation of GrainHollow Game 6 and the transportation of the traitor Bishop Palamar Game 7

Activity Overview:


Avria

  • Upon acquisition of the Villa, Avria chose the smallest room to store her meagre belongings and bedroll. For smithing practice, she had constructed a small but sturdy lockbox to keep her most important possession stored during her time in Jordan’s Crossing.
  • While she appreciated a safe and secure place to sleep and her small blacksmithing setup, so many years spent alone made Avria weary of living amongst her adventuring companions. Thus she spends many quiet afternoons in Thaddius’s backyard working on her warhammer.
  • While she had mastered the creation of a common warhammer, the detail she was after for the sigil and lightning bolt were still beyond her level of skill. Thaddius gave tips here and there, but still insisted that she needed to keep practising. With this in mind, Avria typically returned to the villa each evening with a handful of small steel warhammers and lightning bolts.
  • Some of these she saved for use while fishing (the tiny warhammers for weights, the small thin bolts for lures), others she offered to her companions to do with what they wished, and with the balance she adorned the flagons that Bornel left behind.
  • Upon learning that she was still fishing on occasion, Konang asked Avria to bring home some fish so that he could test out his new smoker. Although Avria was still annoyed that Konang had insulted her skills in the past, she agreed, happy to smugly deliver a sweet haul of creek loaches. Apparently her hammers and bolts made for lucky fishing.

Gronja

  • Gronja takes it upon herself to transport all ten barrels of cloud giant ale from her earthen cellar to the new villa. She does so as her land lady is present, fearing the ire of Rufus the Rooster whenever she is not around. The single mother of five children is sorry to see her go, but Gronja leaves the woman a healthy stipend to get through the lean times.
  • Despite the fact that plenty of room exists in the main house, Gronja eschews the civility of sleeping indoors and makes her bed in the stable hay lofts so that she can enjoy the fresh air. The barbarian does, however, take a room for herself indoors, to store her barrels of ale in a cooler temperature.
  • Gronja pays periodic visits to Thaddius the dwarf as her new set of breastplate is being completed. She has been making payments in small instalments while the old dwarf has tailored the armour to her strapping build. Soon she should be able to pay off the balance, perhaps after another mission with her adventuring companions.
  • The barbarian spends the balance of her month concocting a new brew with a strong kick that she calls ’Gronja’s Animating Grog’, which she offers freely to her comrades. She also takes over the villa garden by planting hops and grapes. Not being a terribly good farmer, she leans heavily on Nevyn to ‘encourage’ the growth of her seeds with his magical knowledge of Druidcraft.

Gronja’s Animating Grog (GAG). Drink grog. Constitution saving throw DC 10 to activate effects. Duration 1 hour. Success grants bonus action move up to one-half your speed. Failure forces movement in random direction, regardless of opportunity attacks provoked. Roll 1d8 for each square around Medium size imbiber (1d12 for Large size imbiber) and move one-half your speed in that direction.


Indus

  • With his companions scattered and pursuing errands of their own, Indus sets to deciphering the old ledger he had been given. Though he didn’t immediately recognize the language it was written in, there were small clues that provided him with a starting point for his research.
  • The better part of a week was spent hidden away among wobbling stacks of dusty books and reams of cracked old scrolls in the Jordan’s Academy Library. Guided by the collected knowledge of hundreds of lifetimes he applied the sharp edge of his intellect to the ledger, slicing through layers of linguistic obfuscation and teasing forth a few glimmering threads of understanding.
  • When the reading tired his eyes and his mind felt near to bursting, Indus unwound with extended sessions of target practice. While in the library he had uncovered a text detailing the teachings of a blind Mulan master archer. The lessons were as much meditation as archery instruction and served to soothe his overworked mind. Soon, within the space of a slow blink, he was able to load his crossbow and send a bolt sailing into his target with practiced ease.

Konang

  • Konang hangs out now and then with Maven the animal handler who looks after his young Hippogriff, Gary Too. He’s picking up some tips on how to handle and train his new found animal acquaintance. in between spending time with Maven and Gary Too, he spends time hunting for wild game to try out some new recipes he’s been developing for a cook book. If only he could catch that wild pig that has been alluding the party for so long, almost as if it’s tormenting him. He finds out his long time rival and best friend has been hanging around town. He meets up with his old arena buddy Krang who he looked up to in the fight-pits as a sort of older brother and mentor. They sip at the local watering hole and reminisce about the early days of the arenas, and how Konang’s escape inspired old Krang to set out on his own himself after being born into the Arenas. As they were both getting into a bit of a good time argument, Konang’s long time annoyance and most unliked bodies fell into a chair at their table and drunkenly proclaimed that Konang is a big wuss who was favoured by the fight fathers and bought most of his wins. Konang was in a jolly mood and made a quip that soured Knievel’s face and injured his pride, something about his fighting being compared to a pile of ropes, we think?.. They break out into a fight and Krang starts taking bets to get the pub patrons into a frenzy. The fight was short and sweet as Konang flipped Knievel onto his back and bopped him on his head to put him to sleep. It wasn’t too hard as Knievel was already deep into the Mulderberry Ale that evening. After paying Clint the Barkeep his share of the winnings and still having a good time but not welcome in the pub anymore that evening, Konang and Krang leave to finish singing songs and drinking from their flasks back in Konangs Inn quarters, looking forward to another night of friendly banter and perhaps matching their skills some time in the future. He wakes in the morning and Krang has left from the couch and he gets up to start his new dinner special of Roast Field Hare with Jamfigs and popper root veggies.

Vondulyth

  • The paladin takes advantage of the new villa and immediately commandeers the workshop. Vondulyth spends the month making several modifications to the party battle wagon. The industrious half-elf adds a host of closable arrow slits to the vehicle, access to the driving seat through the second floor, cover for anybody driving the vehicle or riding up top, fixed hooded lanterns on each corner, and a trap door on the bottom level for surreptitious exits.
  • There are still some small flourishes left to build and the largest addition by far intended for the roof, but those will have to wait for another time. His disciples can’t help but speculate that the paladin has been keeping himself busy to avoid dealing with his unfair suspension from the church of Trithereon. His party members, however, can plainly tell that Vondulyth has never been more light-hearted or emotionally unencumbered.

Wennicus

  • Upon reaching the next tier of Ranger knowledge and skills, Wen decides to pursue the path of the Beast Master. He heads into his old and familiar turf, the nearby forests of Jordan’s Crossing. Using his gnomish ability to speak with small animals, he approaches the forest animals for counsel.
  • They inform him of a Giant Badger that lives deep within the woods. A veritable warrior amongst its kind, and also one of the friendliest creatures to be found. Wen befriends the Giant Badger, and the two start to train together. The Badger soon becomes his companion.
  • Amidst this, Wen also uses his wiles and charms with the forest animals to acquire a pet Owl. Although the Owl prefers the term “Guide” over “Pet”.
  • Wen, using his abilities with tinkering, also sets out to make a tiny saddle. So that he might ride atop his Badger when the need arises.
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Power Vacuum

Characters: Gronja, Nevyn Verulai, Toth, Vondulyth Grimtoken, Wennicus
Game Date: 26/10/14
Grainhollow, Hamlet of Jordan’s Crossing

Plot Overview:

  • A note stained with blood is delivered to Gronja at her usual haunt. It was lifted off a young woman found dead outside Jordan’s Crossing and delivered by a stranger. The note is from a farmer named Willem that Gronja befriended back at Grainhollow, asking for the barbarian and her companions to return and dispatch their ongoing gnoll problem.
  • The heroes load up the battle wagon and head out during the night, sleeping on the way. As they approach Grainhollow, their vehicle is attacked. Thorn, one of Vondulyth’s disciples, is injured by a gnoll arrow. The party spring into action, leaping out the back door of the battle wagon, attacking through arrow slits on the side, and climbing a top the roof for a better vantage point.
  • Wennicus, the newest member of the party, understands every word the gnolls are saying. The matriarchal leader means to steal their battle wagon for herself. Vondulyth stabilizes his disciple, but can’t land a single blow against the enemy, too distraught by his disciple’s injuries. Toth comes to the paladin’s rescue with a Sleep spell from inside the wagon and slumbers his gnoll opponent.
  • Gronja cleaves through the gnolls at speed the moment her feet touch the ground. Nevyn transforms into a bear a top the battle wagon and trades attacks with the gnoll leader. The battle is evenly matched between the pair, until a flurry of arrows sink into her chest. Several human archers appear out of the wheat, demanding tribute for the militia that has formed to deal with gnolls such as these.
  • Vondulyth pays the toll to resolve the stand of peacefully. The barbarian explains that she has been called here by Willem, only to find out that has he been branded a traitor by Gideon and locked in manacles. Gideon, the party recalls, was the mercenary they encountered on the road almost six weeks earlier, heading to Grainhollow as they were leaving.
  • As the party drive their battle wagon into Grainhollow, militia soldiers can be seen everywhere, haughtily throwing their weight around. The villagers, however, look miserable. Their expressions clearly blame the heroes for abandoning them to their current fate. One villager throws a tomato at Vondulyth, hitting him squarely. He recognizes the woman as Patricia and leaps down off the battle wagon.
  • The paladin disarms the woman with unexpected patience by offering to let her throw as many tomatoes at him as she likes. Exasperated by his tolerance, she decides ‘not’ to spit in his face. A small victory. Vondulyth promises that he and his comrades will get to the bottom of whatever happened in Grainhollow since they left.
  • The party approach the building wherein Gideon is holed up and guarded by his militia. He welcomes the heroes with open arms from atop a rustic throne. The heroes humour Gideon as he brags about his operation, noting that he has about ten mercenaries for every one of their number. Not only that, but Gideon seems to have brought every villager to heel beneath his protective might. For their own good, as he sees it.
  • Neyvn, Toth, and Wen are actually persuaded that Gideon has enforced a tangible good in Grainhollow, but Gronja and Vondulyth see Gideon for what he really is. A self-installed petty warlord reigning over the hamlet with a tyrannical fist. The barbarian and paladin decide to give the mercenary enough rope to hang himself in the eyes of their comrades.
  • The party split apart and tour New Grainhollow with free run of the place. Gronja is entertained by Gideon, who shows her around town, a walk which ends by visiting Willem in chains. Apparently the farmer tried to kill Gideon in his sleep. Willem seems broken, but the barbarian can tell he’s only mouthing words of obedience. She leaves a carving tool in Willem’s possession without being noticed by Gideon, hoping the farmer can pick the lock of his shackles.
  • Vondulyth and Wen venture out of the hamlet in search of gnoll tracks with a group of militia soldiers, one of whom used to be a villager. The tracks circle Grainhollow in an organized manner that Wennicus regards as highly unusual for gnolls. He believes they must be commanded by an exceptionally strong leader. The tracks are two weeks old, consistent with the last gnoll attack according to the villager guard.
  • Toth visits the outlying farms to learn everything he can about the raiding gnolls and pieces together their haphazard tactics though anecdotal stories.
  • Nevyn means to explore the town and size up the mercenary militia abroad, but realizes that he is being shadowed and ambushes his follower. It turns out to be the young boy, he had seen in Gideon’s employ earlier that day. The kid had served him wine…what was his name, Franklin.
  • Nevyn learns that the boy is actually a branded slave whose parents were killed by Gideon for defying him. The wood elf assures the boy that he will be freed, but to play along for now, even if that means continuing to spit in his master’s mead. The lad disappears, wide-eyed and amazed that he was spared a beating for speaking ill of Gideon.
  • Returning to the ‘Hall of Gideon’, Vondulyth realizes that all three of his disciples are missing. He looks for them in the building where they have been supplied accommodations, but to no avail. The heroes confer with each other about what to do next. Everybody is on the same page now. Gideon must be deposed.
  • The plan is to divide his forces and conquer. Wen will lead the heroes, along with a large group of militia soldiers, to hunt down the gnolls. Gronja will goad Gideon into joining their expedition. The heroes will deal with the gnolls first and then cut down any surviving militia afterwards, including Gideon.
  • Gideon likes the idea of hunting down the gnolls. He’s even willing to come along after some obvious reservations. Vondulyth demands to know where his disciples are being kept, as they possess important insight into gnoll tactics. Gideon assures the paladin that Wennicus is clearly the expert on gnolls, but that his disciplines are in good hands. The paladin isn’t prepared to let that stand, even if it means compromising their plan.
  • Suddenly the Hall of Gideon is set alight by flaming arrows. The gnolls are attacking the village. They burst into the building with their commander, a fiendishly-possessed gnoll. Toth can tell right away that the commander is merely a host body for the Queen of Rot. The gnoll archfey who grants him his warlock powers.
  • Gronja charges into the gnolls with her axe. Nevyn transforms into a dire wolf and flanks the barbarian. Vondulyth casts Bless on his party members. The gnolls, however, swarm Toth and cut him down with extreme prejudice. They even tear into his body as he lies unconscious on the ground. Wennicus miraculously heals the tielfing before he succumbs to his wounds.
  • Toth sneaks away to safety in the chaos of battle and Vondulyth draws the Queen of Rot’s attention with a righteous smite from Trithereon. A gnoll grunt is about to chuck his spear at Toth, who is still barely clinging to life, but the paladin attracts his ire with an unbelievably offensive insult (“Your father was your primary parent!”) and suffers the spear instead.
  • Gronja pales at the sight of Vondulyth falling to the ground and calls out his name before she realizes the words have escaped her mouth. Enraged, she finishes off the gnoll grunts as Nevyn wrestles the Queen of Rot to the ground with his feral teeth. Close to death, the gnoll archfey casts Darkness over herself and escapes out of the building, taking the shadows with her as she goes.
  • The heroes turn to Gideon, now defended only by two guards, and attack the man with every intention of arresting him. Gronja wrestles Gideon into a grapple and demands that he surrenders. Gideon is profoundly hurt that Gronja would turn on him and sheds a tear at her perceived treachery. The petty warlord calls out to a pair of guards on the second level who appear with two of Vondulyth’s disciples, bound with ropes and knives at their throats. One of his disciples yet remains at large!
  • Nevyn turns back into a wood elf and tells the guards to lay down their weapons. He Thunderwaves the petty warlord and his personal guard out of Gronja’s grasp. Amazed by the devastating show of magic, one of the guards drops his weapon and releases his disciple prisoner. The mercenary hired from abroad, however, does not. He pushes his captive over the ledge, whom Nevyn manages to handily catch.
  • The wood elf heals Vondulyth back onto his feet, who in turn restores himself to health while also cutting his disciple free. Now the heroes mean to put Gideon down. Toth retreats to the battle wagon with the two rescued disciples as Gideon makes a run for it. Nevyn turns into a dire wolf again and chases the petty warlord out of the building. A pitched battle is taking place outside between gnolls and militia soldiers.
  • Willem is spotted in the distance with a spear, having escaped from his manacles with Gronja’s help, and impales the Queen of Rot, killing her host body. The gnolls under her command, more dead than alive after being driven to exhaustion by the archfey, fall to the ground as if their puppet strings were cut. Vondulyth’s third disciple appears, having disguised himself as a guard.
  • The heroes help rebuild Grainhollow for the next week, during which time they remand Gideon into the custody of provincial soldiers and set the mercenaries free with their lives. One of them jests that, given the chance, he would do it all over again. Vondulyth warns the man to never darken Grainhollow again, but ‘Nedeck’ remains devoid of conscience. The paladin marks the man as his foe with an ensnaring vine and remembers his name.
  • The heroes return to Jordan’s Crossing where they learn that the Church of Trithereon has gone completely dark in the absence, closing their doors. The city Captain Bornel has been stripped of command and Bartimaeus has been promoted in his place. Jordan rewards the party for saving Grainhollow and bequeaths the estate of Captain Bornel into their collective ownership, along with informal authority as deputies in Jordan’s Crossing.
  • The Team parks the wagon in their new home, Nevyn begins to feed the animals as the other go to claim rooms. He hears a cough under the wagon, he looks down to see finds the Franlin stowed away under the battle wagon looking at him with surprise and apprehension. “Oh, uh….Hey mithter…”

Memorable lines:

  • “Your father was your primary parent!”

Unanswered Questions:

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Jordangate Exposed

Characters: Avria Wyndhammer, Gronja, Indus Ederix, Toth, Vondulyth Grimtoken
Game Date: 19/10/14
Jordan’s Crossing

Plot Overview:

  • Avria, Gronja, Indus, and Vondulyth meet with the shipping foreman in Jordan’s Crossing. He hires the heroes to protect a vessel in one of his dockside warehouses. The ships under his control have either been attacked by other vessels and pirated or outright hijacked and set adrift after the hold is emptied. He doesn’t know what to expect this time, but wants the party to safeguard against any criminal activity.
  • The party arrive early and hide around the shipping bay in anticipation of a raid. Nothing happens for hours. Instead, supervisors and dockworkers begin to show up and start loading the ship. City guards appear as and confer with the workers to make sure everything is running smoothly. All is proceeding as it should. Until Indus spots a tattoo on one of the workers taking inventory.151px-Vecna_symbol.jpg
  • It’s an old image. The holy symbol of a god that many regard to be long dead. Slain by Trithereon thousands or years ago. A god who known for horde secrets in order to keep them for himself and let them die. Vecna. The one deity against whom Indus, an academic seeking to share knowledge, stands firmly opposed.
  • Indus watches the man very carefully after that, to the exclusion of all else. Although unknown to his party, Indus arranged for many of his thieves’ guild acquaintances to be preoccupied elsewhere tonight, securing their dockside wealth in anticipation of being raided themselves, and thereby thinning the numbers of any brigands they might potentially face.
  • Gronja, hiding atop the loading crane, spots a tiefling peering in through one of the warehouse windows. The fiend doesn’t move against anybody, but seems content to watch from his elevated vantage point, suspended from a vine. The barbarian watches the suspicious character intently while remaining hidden in the shadows.
  • It is not until several robed men arrive dressed as acolytes of Trithereon that Vondulyth grows suspicious. He doesn’t recognize any of them. When one of the pseudo-acolytes walks up behind a dockworker, the paladin swings down from the rafters and grapples the charlatan off his feet. At the same time, archers appear in the rafters and fire crossbows, having arrived even before the heroes did.
  • Vondulyth is beset not only the acolytes and snipers, but the dockworkers as well. They have merely pretended to be employees of the shipyard this whole time. Gronja runs across the crane arm and repels into the ship’s hold, where she is assailed by a dockworker and two supervisors. They ineffectually attack the barbarian, much to her amusement.
  • One of the four guards Captain Bornel sent as backup attacks a turncoat dockworker. The remaining guards flank Vondulyth to create a united front, but then turn traitor and attack the paladin with surprise. One of the men pass along a greeting. “Captain Bornel says hello.”
  • More corruption. The paladin smites the acolyte he grappled to oblivion with Trithereon’s wrath. The acolyte cackles with his final breath, claiming that Trithereon hasn’t been in control for a long time.
  • Vondulyth heals himself as Avria runs to his side and Sacred Flames the guards and dockworkers. She summons a Spiritual Hammer to do her bidding while swinging her own weapon. Indus hasn’t been noticed yet and sneak attacks one of the crossbowmen in the rafters, taking him out with a single shot that sends his lifeless body into the water below.
  • Gronja bisects the dockworker and two supervisors with her axe and vaults above deck to lend a hand. The tiefling who Gronja spotted in the window makes his way into the warehouse and casts Sleep on the turncoat workers, knocking out the fellow with a Venca tattoo just as Indus was about to sneak attack him from behind.
  • The guard commander, Bartimaeus, seemingly the only one not on the take, cuts down one of his underlings.
  • The tiefling walks away from an attacking acolyte who he decides is beneath his notice. Enraged, the acolyte takes a cheap shot at the warlock and suffers icily for his impudence. The tielfling proceeds to cut the acolyte down as an afterthought when the man tries to flee. The last two surviving ambushers retreat, one diving into the water within an inch of his life and the other crashing through a warehouse window.
  • Indus vouches for the tiefling as being on their side and stops Gronja from charging down the caster. Unable to slow her momentum, the barbarian body slams the tiefling and gives him a hug instead. He introduces himself as Toth.
  • The heroes loot the bodies and clean both ship and warehouse with Mending and Prestidigitation. They warn the honest guard, Bartimaeus, to be careful around his obviously corrupt captain. He agrees to hide and tells the heroes where to find him.
  • The party bind up the dock working imposter with a Vecna tattoo and are guided unseen through the city by Toth, their new tiefling companion who knows his way around the lower-income boroughs. They leave the captive with Nevyn in his treetop abode outside Jordan’s Crossing and then turn around to meet with Professor Swanson at the King’s University.
  • The heroes wish to secure an audience with the city’s lord, Jordan, the latest in a long line of Jordan’s who assume the title as ruler. As an academic and lover of knowledge, Swanson is disturbed by the resurgence of Venca in any form. He agrees to do his ready best in bringing the heroes before the city’s ruler to plead their case.
  • Indus sneaks off and secures a private audience with Jordan through his archaeological patron, the Countess Sybil Ambrosia. She meets with the party and tells them in no uncertain terms that they are now in her debt now. The Countess guides the heroes through the castle where they encounter no resistance whatsoever, causing Vondulyth to speculate with Indus that she must be one of the lord’s mistresses.
  • The current Jordan, Jordan IV, of Jordan’s Crossing turns out to be a man of rationality over faith. The heroes warn him that followers of Vecna, a religion long since believed dead, has infested not only his city, but the church of Trithereon in particular. They offer their living captive and confiscated unholy symbols as proof of this claim, along with their own sworn testimonies that Captain Bornel is working with them.
  • When asked what they hope to see accomplished, Indus and Vondulyth agree that an inquisition would be best, along with the impeachment of Bornel as Captain. Vondulyth pleads for Damien the priest, framed by bishop Palimar for knowing too much, to be cleared of all wrongdoing. The heroes part ways with the lord, offering to avail their services as needed.

Memorable lines:

Unanswered Questions:

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Crook in Faith
What's good for one is not always good for another...

Characters: Avria, Gronja, Indus Ederix, Konang, Nevyn Verulai, Vondulyth Grimtoken
Game Date: 12/10/14
Jordan’s Crossing

Plot Overview:

  • After a month of downtime, the heroes leap at the chance to police gnoll raids threatening the nearby borough of Grainhollow. Apparently the attacks are more frequent than they realized, because an alarm is sounded the moment they arrive. Vondulyth blesses Gronja, Indus, and Konang who all charge into combat. The half-orc is quickly isolated, surrounded, and knocked down.
  • The paladin is harried by the enemy as he runs to protect Konang’s body, currently being fought over by slavering minions. Avria heals Konang back to life and drops a Shatter spell on the gnoll leader and his followers, but inadvertently takes out the corner of a house as well. Fire spreads through a grain store as the heroes whittle down the cackling beasts until only their glaive-wielding commander remains.
  • Indus runs through the collapsed house to get a clear shot, but is tagged by the long reach of a gnoll polearm. He returns the kindness with a skull shattering bolt through the leader’s eye socket. The heroes repair the village and perform last rites over all the slain peasants before leaving. The party heads back to Jordan’s Crossing and meets a mercenary on the road named Gideon.
  • The man is full of bluster and tall tales. He’s heading for Grainhollow to deal with the gnoll problem the heroes already vanquished. Gronja flirts with the mercenary as they compare weapons. Vondulyth checks the bounty boards back in Jordan’s Crossing for anybody matching Gideon’s description. A quick visit to Professor Swanson at the university promises more protection work if the party return tomorrow. Jewelled artefacts have been turning up in large numbers from several new archaeological digs.
  • The paladin returns to the church of Trithereon where he learns that Damien, a respected priest of the church, has been excommunicated for unspeakable crimes. The deacon is almost intimidated into telling Vondulyth what happened until his personal guards intervene. The surly paladin spends the day trying to find Damien in Jordan’s Crossing, but nobody is talking, except to drag the priest’s name through the dirt for unnamed crimes.
  • Meanwhile Avria, Gronja, and Konang encounter a beggar in the street whose priestly vestments have fallen to disrepair. The fellow turns out to be Damien, who tells Avria that he has been accused of consorting with devils, a crime that conveniently coincides with a number of missing street urchins. Damien professes his innocence and Avria believes him. Gronja decides that the priest is being framed. They agree to meet at Avria’s hovel later that night.
  • The heroes meets up at their tavern haunt for dinner where Vondulyth is told about Damien. They wait for him to arrive at Avria’s cave when Indus spots several thugs from the local thieves’ guild getting ready to ambush the priest. He doubles their pay and sends them off, sparing Damien from a beat down.
  • Sitting around the fire, Damien is persuaded to open up, admitting that he witnessed the local bishop of Trithereon stealing artefacts sent back to Jordan’s Crossing from the archaeological digs. Sensing he didn’t approve, the bishop used his religious authority to smear Damien’s good name. Vondulyth swears his disciples to secrecy and leaves the priest in their care with the battle wagon.
  • The heroes wake up the next day and head out to see Professor Swanson when they are attacked in broad daylight by a gang of archers and brigands. The party are made savvy to the attack when Indus detects the ambush beforehand. Gronja flies into a frenzied rage that unsteadies any opponent within cleaving reach of her axe. The adventurers huddle near the barbarian and beat back their assailants.
  • Vondulyth gets in a good smiting, but falls to a devastating sneak attack. Avria makes sure he gets back on his feet in enough time to potentially deflect an arrow from hitting Gronja. The attack narrowly misses the barbarian and Vondulyth ends up caressing her lithe yet sinewy back (that he can’t get out of his mind for some reason). It makes them both uncomfortable.
  • Gronja finishes off all but one of the rogues, who Indus ensorcells with his newfound arcane abilities. The thug instantly becomes his friend. The brigand reveals that the bishop of Trithereon is paying them to steal artefacts at the docks and ship the valuables up river by boat. The man of faith needs only throw his religious weight around and nobody asks questions, least of all the city guards who have no idea what’s happening.
  • Avria finds a message on one of the bodies directing the erstwhile attackers to not only eliminate Damien, but his friends as well. The charmed rogue tells Indus where the dockside theft is taking place and then Vondulyth knocks him unconscious, dropping his body in a sewer grate. The paladin directs his disciples to take Damien and the battle wagon out of town and return in a day when events calm down. The party continue to see Professor Swanson as planned.
  • Indus is introduced to the professor and the two men develop an instant kinship, almost as if they had long been mutual admirers of each other who never met until now. Swanson offers work to the party protecting the very same warehouse that the charmed brigand mentioned was being robbed tonight. The heroes accept the work and then meet with Captain Bornel of the city guard, minus Indus, who wanders off to parts unknown.
  • Vondulyth persuades the captain to post four of his best men, adept at being inconspicuous, near the warehouse. The paladin explains that he and his friends mean to infiltrate the operation as hired guards. They will signal for reinforcements when the culprits are exposed. The heroes deliberately leave the bishop of Trithereon out of their story, setting the stage for the next part of their evening.

Memorable lines:

Unanswered Questions:

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Downtime #2 (One Month)

Activity Overview:


Avria

  • Upon return, Avria heeds the advice of her new smithing trainer to practice, and helps Vondulyth work on the battle wagon. After 10 days the project is near complete and Von wants to take if for a test run. Gronja offeres to go along, for which Avria is thankful, as she desperately needs to assuage her urge to wander. Happy to have her feet back on the ground after their airborne adventures, Avria can’t shake the feelings that overcame her as she sailed through the clouds. As sick as she felt, between bouts of vomiting, she couldn’t help but notice a deep sense of peace and belonging welling within her as she felt the moisture from the clouds touch her skin, the wind blowing through her braids. She felt so conflicted now, safe on the earth. As a dwarf she loved the ground, being on it, in it, surrounded by it, but at the same time being in the clouds somehow felt so right. As she passed the gates of the city, heading out into the surrounding farmlands with her small camp pack, her satchel, and her warhammer, she began to attempt to understand these feelings. The thought of her magical manifestations, most revolving around thunder and lightening. Her own house sigil, two ornate crossed warhammers superimposed over a lightening bolt. Even her name, Wyndhammer, evoked feelings of the sky. Of course there was the excited restlessness of the Other whenever there was a thunderstorm. Could being on that skyship, walking among the cloud giant ruins, have awoken something deep within her? Avria knew this walkabout would have to end sooner than she wished, with work seeming to come often back in Jordan’s Crossing. As she walked, she turned over and over again in her mind the conflicting feelings involving earth and sky, hoping to reach some sort of conclusion and calm her thoughts. Her evenings were spent beside a small fire, working on smithing plans for an ambitious new project. As much as she loved her tried and true warhammer, she one day hoped to craft a new one, inlaid with her house sigil and with a beautiful, stylized lightning bolt gracing the center of it. Perhaps one day she could hold that lightning bolt up to a certain halfling’s throat.

Gronja

  • Gronja brews and barrels the experimental cloud giant Blue Lightning Ale in a day. Then it’s all about the fermenting and waiting. She decides to help Avria and Vondulyth build the battle wagon. Seeing as how the other party members are busy, Vondulyth and Gronja hit the road for a test drive with Thorn, one of his disciples. She names the four draft horses Barley, Honey, Hops, and Malt.
  • Pulling into a thick forest one night, Gronja dreams about wolves as if she were seeing through their eyes. She is awoken and drawn into the woods by howling and tracks down the source. The curious barbarian is confronted by a black dire wolf named Vidar in the depths of those primordial woods. Vidar is the wolf pack leader of this territory and doesn’t like humans sneaking about.
  • Gronja discovers she can communicate with the dire wolf and tells him she comes from an Eastern wolf clan who speaks Winter Wolf. Vidar looks at her differently when she utters a few words in that unique tongue. He accepts her presence in his forest, and — having surprisingly good humour for a dire wolf — tells her that she is welcome to stay and embrace their ways. Her life, however, is in her own hands. If she endangers the wolves of his pack, he will feast upon her entrails.
  • Still feeling partially asleep, Gronja cedes to the strange pull that brought her into the woods and accepts Vidar’s terms. From this moment forwards, the barbarian loses track of time while running with the pack, but learns their habits and territory quite well. She occasionally wanders away alone, allowing her human mind to resurface, but then she hears a wolf howl and joins the pack again.
  • Gronja only fully comes back to her human senses when she returns to the battle wagon. She can only recall snippets of the past several days, and would have thought the whole thing was a hallucination, if not for the overpowering scent of wolf enshrouding her body.
  • The barbarian is surprised to see Vondulyth stumble out of the forest at the same time, looking equally unkempt, although relatively cleaner by comparison. She is more surprised by the memories the sight of him brings back. Fragmented images of meeting Vondulyth in the woods under a bright moon. A primitive encounter. Biting and scratching, but it didn’t end there. It became something else. Something carnal and utterly exposed. Gronja knows exactly what happened. She tries to suppress the memories, but they only cause her thick swarthy skin to blush.
  • An awkwardness settles between the two of them. She can tell he remembers as well as they greet his worried disciple. Apparently they were both gone for ten days. A feeling of clumsiness persists between the barbarian and paladin all the way back to Jordan’s crossing, where they quickly part ways. Gronja returns to her earthen cellar, checks on the ale, and reminisces about all that happened.
  • The trip reminds her of stories from childhood. The tale of Tömör and his winter wolf Sarangerel come to mind. Their stories of camaraderie and heroism were her favourite legends as a child, especially considering how easily she was able to learn the Winter Wolf language. Those tales filled her head with dreams of having a Winter Wolf companion of her own someday, but she never gave up on them. Less so now than ever.

Vondulyth

  • Gronja and Vondulyth build the battle wagon with the help of Avria in ten days. And of course, the first order of business is to try out their new wheels. The two adventuring companions grab young Thorn, one of Vondulyth’s disciples, and head out on a spontaneous trip.
  • The triptych travel Northeast for five days. During the trip, Gronja and Vondulyth begin to experience weird dreams and waking visions, especially as they approach a primordial forest. Thorn remains completely oblivious to their hallucinations. Gronja dreams of running with wolves above ground and Vondulyth dreams of fusing with trees below ground.
  • The pair slip away in what Thorn later describes as a fugue state, not entirely aware of their actions. Vondulyth communes with fey creatures and spirits. They separate him from Gronja and lead him to a sacred grove where he cocoons among ancient tree roots.
  • The entire experience devolves into an incoherent blur, but he does recall meeting up with Gronja for a less than platonic rendezvous during a full moon. Vondulyth eventually regains his senses and returns to the battle wagon at the same time that Gronja lopes out of the forest from a different direction. Thorn has been worried sick. They’ve both been gone for ten days.
  • Gronja and Vondulyth say nothing to each other, but they clearly remember what happened. The two adventuring companions can’t look at each other as Thorn drives them home. An unspoken agreement forms between the barbarian and paladin, as they pretend like it never happened.
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Test Drive, Part #2
The Icarus factor

Characters: Avria, Gronja, Indus Ederix, Konang, Nevyn Verulai, Vondulyth Grimtoken
Game Date: 5/10/14
In the Sky, West of Jordan’s Crossing

  • The heroes bed down for the night as Nevyn takes first watch. He becomes convinced that the party is being watched and wakes up Gronja before he attempts to stealth around and surprise the voyeur.
  • Moments before Nevyn kicks a stone, the watcher warns him of the rock from his path to make sure he remains silent, after the druid spots him he invites the fellow to warm up by their fire.
  • When pressed for his story, the slightly built, but rakishly handsome human implies that he may have stowed aboard the Southpoint, which is why nobody recognizes him from the ship.
  • Indus introduces himself to everybody the next morning and offers to augment their expedition with his vast archaeological knowledge. The party accepts his expertise and heads out for the castle.
  • Tom leads the heroes to a largely intact building within which the tapestry to repair his dirigible is located, but adds that if the party is willing to explore the adjoining room, they might find a firestone gem inside which would prove useful when attempting to steer his questionable vehicle. Tom assures everybody that the building is completely safe, having scouted the place last night, which the party accepts as either an addled-minded or bold faced lie.
  • The party enters the room and see’s the massive doors still in tact after thousands of years laying crossed on the floor. Long since broken off the frames.
  • Konang and Vondulyth pick up one of the unhinged front doors, which turns out to be heavier than it looks. They prop it up against a wall beneath the tapestry and secure it in place. Indus offers to investigate the tapestry first, but Gronja is already running up the ramp.
  • The barbarian leaps up, grabs the tapestry, and handily climbs the length of it. Ninety feet up, she takes Vondulyth’s advice and secures herself with a grappling hook and rope.
    Swinging back and forth to build up momentum, Gronja runs up the wall and deftly detaches the tapestry from its mooring. She acrobatically descends in a nimble arc, trailing the tapestry behind her like an impossibly long cape, and gently alights on the ground (before succumbing to the self-consciousness of her unintentional grace).
  • Meanwhile, Avria and Nevyn notice several sets of crisscrossing tracks that are at varying levels of dust, indicating time passing between when the tracks were made. Some were devoid of dust.
  • Konang spots something moving under the rubble at the far end of the vast hall. Gronja gets the tapestry clear before he throws an ignited flask of oil on the broken stone. Nevyn Thunderwaves the fire to spread onto the moving rubble which prompts a grey ooze to lash out and strike the half-orc’s armour, scarring the metal. The half-orc keeps his sword sheathed and drops a rock on the ooze instead, killing the abomination.
  • This prompts a second ooze to appear, which Vondulyth attacks, damaging his blade but smiting the beast with Trithereon’s wrath. Avria and Gronja attempt to squish the ooze beneath the door ramp, but the creature is repelled away from under the frame, as if the two were oppositely charged magnets. The ooze scurries off back under the rubble.
  • Indus, possessed with curiosity, explores the side room on his own, and inadvertently walks into a perfectly transparent gelatinous cube. 248662.jpgHe manages to escape, but not without suffering a healthy dollop of acid damage. He disengages to safety, allowing the party hammers to take his place.
  • Gronja slashes the ooze nearly in half and Vondulyth lends his acid-bitten sword to the effort, but then both are engulfed by the creature and rendered unconscious. Konang suggests a clothesline manoeuvre that he once used during an themed gladiatorial battle. Running with the idea, Indus and Nevyn (now a dire wolf) pull a rope through the gelatinous cube and rescue their companions, even as the hempen line disintegrates. Kongang delivers the finishing blow.
  • Indus promptly searches the adjoining room and discovers giant-sized tomes and a heavy chest atop a tall shelf, which he deftly picks. Not only does the rogue find a firestone gem inside, but an ancient magic longsword as well, which replaces Vondulyths damaged weapon.sword.jpg The remains of a human female body, presumably the original Jenny or Loretta, is curled up on the shelf as well. Indus takes extensive notes of all that he finds.
  • As the heroes emerge out of the building, Tom snaps back to lucidity for the first time in decades. Nobody has ever come back from inside the building before, let alone with the materials he needs. All of his companions died trying.
  • The heroes slowly bring Tom up to speed with current events and respectfully collect the remains of his friends. He spends the next six days are spent repairing the dirigible with the Southpoint captain and crew.
  • Avria spends the intervening time repairing her comrade’s armour. Gronja goes looking for indigenous roots to brew unique ales. Indus extensively records cloud giant history. Konang cooks nourishing food packages for his comrades. Nevyn studies the firestone gem. Vondulyth assists with dirigible repairs and studies the design intently.
  • Finally, the heroes and Tom lift off with the Southpoint survivors, firing immolated arrows into the mist to avoid hitting any obstacles, as they float away from the cloud giant ruins.
  • Shortly after departing, the vessel is pincer attacked by a griffon and dive-bombing peryton that takes Vondulyth out in its first dive. The creature is poised to devour his half-elven heart when Nevyn heals the paladin and Thorn Whips the predator bird away from a blood-pumping meal. The crew fires arrows at the flying beasts. Konang slices into the griffon and sends the beast spiralling out of the firmament. That’s when the hippogriff from the previous airship, he named Gary, unexpectedly arrives to join the fight.
  • The griffon is taken out mid flight by Gronja and Konang and it plummets into the clouds below
  • The peryton uses his cunning to slash open the tapestry. The heroes repay this sabotage in lethal force and kill the malicious beast. The dirigible, however, is now venting hot air. Avria is capable of making the needed repairs, but unwilling to climb atop the inflated bladder. A second attempt to fly her up on Gary when the hippogriff senses her nervousness and rears up.
  • Finally, a rope is slung over the blimp and firmly attached to Avria, allowing the still reticent dwarf to be hoisted up safely. The dwarven cleric struggles to summon inner-calm, wanting to help the party but paralyzed with fear, when the godly voice of Muamman Duathal casually assures Avria ‘You’ve got this’, strengthening her resolve. Half-way into repairs, however, Avria spots more flying creatures approaching the dirigible and insists on being lowered back down.
  • The creatures turn out to be a flock of hippogriffs and their chicks. Gary nudges one the chicks at Konang, passing her parenting duties along to the gladiator. The hippogriff family departs, but the dirigible is still in danger. Tom overtaxed the firestone gem to keep the vessel aloft, and the tapestry balloon ignites from the excessive heat.
  • Avria both unwilling and now unable to go back atop the balloon, curses as the ship begins to lose altitude.
  • Fortunately, Jordan’s Crossing looms ahead. The floating cloud giant peninsula moved near the city over the last week. The broad inland river that runs astride the burgeoning metropolis provides a soft landing which everybody endures without injury. The derigible does not share the same fate and after skipping along the shor tearing open its hull, sinks to the bottom of the Jordan River.
  • The party, and crew, swim to shore and walk back to the city with a patrolling escort, whereupon they meet Captain Bornel of the city guard, who turns out to be a card-carrying fan of Tom the Inventor from back in the day.
  • The heroes leave Tom in good hands and meet with their benefactor Devalyn Shore, to whom Gronja gleefully breaks the news that his investment crashed on a cloud giant promontory, the location of which continually scuds through the unknowable sky. Indus feigns happiness to see Devalyn, whose fiancé, the Countess Sybil Ambrosia, not only remains his treasure-hunting patron, but also his secret paramour.

Memorable lines:

Unanswered Questions:
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Test Drive, Part #1
Iiiiiiiiiiii'm saaaaaailing awaaaaaay

Characters: Avria, Gronja, Konang, Nevyn Verulai, Vondulyth Grimtoken
Game Date: 28/09/14
In the Sky, West of Jordan’s Crossing

Plot Overview:

  • A message is left for the heroes at their usual haunt, which Gronja retrieves. “~Work at dock. Find the ship. D.S.~” The barbarian happily relates this message to her party, utterly oblivious that it was signed by none other than Devalyn Shore. The man who broke Gronja’s heart by choosing a high society doxy over her rustic charms. Devalyn continues to hire the heroes occasionally, but the party shields Gronja from that truth.
  • The companions-in-arms travel to the docks where they meet with Graf’mol, a centaur captain, and negotiate terms for their employment. The ship is looking for capable men and woman to join them on their maiden voyage, should they encounter any hostile creatures. A deal is struck. Vondulyth inquires as to how a mastless ship means to sail, but Graf’mol simply smirks and carries on with his duties. The heroes accept that the mysterious method of mobility is integral to their hazard pay.
  • The party returns several hours later amid a hullabaloo of high society types rubbing shoulders; Investors from the Banker’s Guild, Kings University Professers, Including Swanson. Devalyn Shore and his investors bless the vessel, named The Southpoint, with a bottle of fine ale. Gronja had been kept distracted up until that point by Vondulyth’s disciples, but now, as the ship rises up out of the water and leaves him on the docks below, she sees Devalyn for the first time and launches a mouthful of sputum across his face.
  • The Southpoint is borne aloft by a ring of fire that encircles the vessel , trappped by two aerodynamic arms extending out from the hull.101320.jpg
  • Vondulyth insists on a tour, during which time he learns that the ship is powered by a fire elemental which is mentally controlled by a helmsman. The party sail aboard The Southpoint for three glorious days, high above The Great Plains. On the fourth day they are awoken by screeching outside.
  • Rushing to the deck the heroes find the ship flying through a cloud and unable to pinpoint the loctaion of the screech. Most of them lash themselves to the main deck by rope, but Konang refuses to follow their example. Vondulyth watches for signs of trouble on the Starboard side, where he is descended on by a hippogriff that slashes him wide open.
  • Nevyn returns the paladin to his feet with a Healing Word. Kongang leaves his greatsword sheathed, runs across deck, and leaps off The Southpoint (without a safety line), hoping to grapple the hippogriff before the creature escapes. He lands on the creature’s back and begins to control the beast. A second hippogriff flies over the prow and attacks the barbarian.
  • The party subdue the errant hippogriff while Konang wrestles his new-found mount onto the deck. Rope harnesses are thrown over their necks. The sound of young chirping hippogriffs can be heard through the fog as the ship continues sailing.
  • Suddenly a castle tower breaks through the cloud directly beside the hull. The starboard wing is sheered off against the castle, along with a fire conduit, extinguishing the ring of flame that levitates the ship.
  • The Southpoint shudders and descends in a controlled free-fall. Nevyn revives the subdued hippogriff and climbs a top the creature’s back, swinging Avria up with him.
  • Suddenly there is ground beneath the ship, which comes rushing up to greet the heroes. Gronja leaps off the ship with her rope, but forgets to tether it first, and falls thirty feet. Vondulyth swings down on his rope, alights on the ground like a cat, and cuts his rope before becoming an ineffective anchor.
  • The Southpoint continues to be torn apart by the angry fire elemental as Avria, Konang, and Nevyn fly to the surface aback the two hippogriffs. The Southpoint runs aground in a catastrophic shattering of timber, after which the flying mounts are set free.
  • The heroes rush to the aid of any survivors and find ten living souls, including the centaur captain, who simply lifts out of the rubble of the ship and bushes some ash off his shoulder, not a blemish on his uniform.
  • Supplies are salvaged from the wreckage, during which Gronja scavenges for food in this ruined land of ancient structures. Vondulyth realizes the dilapidated buildings are intended for creatures much larger than themselves.
  • The barbarian remembers he training in the wilderness of the variety of airborne predators that feed upon hippogriffs and warns everybody to seek shelter before nightfall.
  • The heroes and crewmembers erect sturdy shelters from the destroyed ship and sleep for the night. Konang keeps watch in the skull of a giant skeleton, wherein a golden tooth is extracted by the party. Vondulyth climbs the highest structure he can find to get his bearings. It’s nothing but ruins to the horizon and blue sky above. They appear to be in the centre of what was once a giant-sized town.
  • The heroes head out for the castle and tower against which the Southpoint collided. Nevyn examines what little flora and fauna he can find and realizes that their altitude is still extremely high.
  • Halfway through the day, the party is attacked by a flock of pseudodragons, one of whom drops Konang with a poison stinger. Nevyn Thorn Whips the psuedodragons into a cluster and Avria drops a Thunderwave on them all. The two remaining pseudodragons flee, but one is shot down by an unknown archer.
  • Vondulyth nullifies the poison-stricken Gronja and Konang, after which they are approached by an old man that the paladin recognizes from Jordan’s Crossing. An inventor named Tom who disappeared twenty years ago in a dirigible. He mistakes Vondulyth for somebody named James, so the paladin plays along and agrees that yes they do have work to do, yes he has been avoiding it long enough, and yes it is time to finish what they started (not really knowing what Tom is talking about, but encouraging him to reveal more).
  • The old crackpot guides the party to his basecamp just outside the castle, where the heroes find a bedroll already made up for them. To that end, Tom starts calling Avria ‘Jenny’, Gronja ‘Loretta’, Konang ‘Toothface’, and Nevyn ‘Tin-Tin’. He claims that his hot air contraption would be repaired already if not for the slime creatures that lash out at him and keep the castle clean. The giant tapestry he needs can be found inside the massive fortress.
  • The heroes share a meal with Tom and rest for the night before exploring the castle. More skeletons are found, along with gut ripper swords identical to the blades found in the archaeological dig, but all giant-sized.
  • The party members realize that they have found the remains of a cloud giant city, a race of colossal humanoids known to manipulate the affairs of smaller mortals from up high. These cloud giants, however, met their end long ago in a bygone age.

Memorable lines:

Unanswered Questions:

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Downtime #1 (Two Weeks)

Activity Overview:

  • The heroes return to Jordan’s Crossing with the surviving archaeologists, the seeing-stone that never answered Nevyn’s question, and a book filled with indecipherable script identical to what was found on the obsidian pillars. Near as Professor Swanson and Vondulyth can tell, the book is actually a ledger. An accounting of what, however, remains unclear. The paladin elects to leave the book with Professor Swanson with the understanding that any future discoveries will be shared.
  • Avria spends her down time trying to catch fish in the forest, instructed by a gnome sage named Wen. Konang throws himself into the fighting pits and raises the renown of his gladiatorial name. Gronja acquires brewing supplies and rents an earthen cellar from a widowed mother (who takes pity on the homeless barbarian). Nevyn retreats into the forest, meets with his Druidic kin, and joins the Circle of the Moon. Vondulyth designs a battle wagon for the party and starts collecting resources to make it a reality.
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Special Delivery
Curiosity killed the scholars

Characters: Avria, Gronja, Konang, Nevyn Verulai, Vondulyth Grimtoken
Game Date: 21/09/14
Excavation Site

Plot Overview:

  • The heroes set out from Jordan’s Crossing with oxen and cart, across the golden planes of wheat that surrounds the city. A not insignificant stipend awaits them upon delivering supplies to archaeologists of the King’s University, three day’s travel abroad. The second night does not fair well, when the heroes are set upon by skeletons that creep out of the tall prairie grass.
  • The party engages the undead unarmoured, but it’s not until Nevyn the wood elf druid Thunderwaves the tall grass flat that the real villains are spotted. Two shades that drain the strength from anybody they touch menace the heroes. The party disperses the necrotic abominations, whose remains, along with those of the skeletons, whirl-wind away to Eastern parts unknown. The same direction in which the heroes has been heading all this time.
  • When the party finally come upon the encampment of archaeologists, they find bodies and carnage, the count of which still leaves twenty-five men and women missing. Signs of struggle are everywhere, along with tracks that lead into the main tent. The canvas pavilion hides a massive entrance-way, seemingly opened by the claw of a great beast, and book-ended by two obsidian pillars. The pathway within is made from a similar substance.
  • The heroes venture inside as a group, until they reach an intersection with two sets of stairs. Half-suspecting an attack, they are ambushed by a giant spider and her offspring. Vondulyth the half-elf paladin is caught up in webbing as his party members are swarmed by arachnids. He manages to free himself in enough to time to aid his companions, allowing Gronja the human barbarian to cleave through the spiders, both large and small.
  • The party continues downwards, spiraling thousands of feet underground. They come upon a sturdy rope bridge which looks like wood, but according to Vondulyth is actually constructed from the same obsidian material they have been walking across. Konang the half-orc fighter is the first to cross this bridge, whereupon he is descended on by bats that sweep him over the side. Gronja lifts him to safety single-handedly.
  • The heroes discover a massive amphitheatre next, all of which faces an isolated dais connected by two narrow bridges, all seamlessly carved out of a single piece of rock. Konang decides to investigate the shaft of light centred on the dais with his hand. Not only are his digits frozen by the effort, but skeletons are summoned throughout the semi-circle of stone seats by his impetuous actions.
    IMG_20140926_151605964_1_.jpg
  • The party engage the skeletons on multiple fronts. Nevyn cast Thorn Whip and pulls a skeleton off a ledge. Konang pushes one to his doom. Gronja fairs less well, caught in the clutches of her undead opponent, during which an insidious voice worms into her mind. Avria the hill dwarf cleric comes to her rescue and pulverizes the skeleton with a mighty warhammer smash.
  • The heroes listen for more activity in a narrow corridor and follow the sounds of voices. They walk down into a room adorned with a wrap around fresco that depicts the division of society, separating the poor, from the wealthy, from the godly. Two doors present themselves directly ahead, but the party goes through a door to their left and ascends into a dungeon of sorts.
  • They explore a room filled with an arsenal of arms and a desk. In doing so, however, they disturb another contingent of skeletons, lead by a shade again. The party tidily beat the skeletons back, but the paladin fights the shade until he drops. The heroes prevail, but after nearly exhausting themselves. Avria and Gronja watch over Vondulyth as Konang and Nevyn explore the adjacent rooms, which turn out to be filled with captive archaeologists.
  • After finding an old key that sets the King’s scholars free, Gronja notices a sash beside the desk that stretches up into the ceiling, and pulls it. A keening alarm is sounded that immediately disturbs the lead archaeologist. The creature that brought them all here will be coming for them now. The party has to flee if they mean to escape with their lives.
  • Gronja picks up Vondulyth and the archaeologists pick up any spare weapons from the storeroom. Together they run back through the caverns as a minotaur skeleton, flanked by a horde of undead, pursue them at speed from out of the double doors. Konang seriously contemplates taking on the minotaur skeleton alone, but is collectively dissuaded by his companions.
  • The heroes barely manage to escape from the cavern ahead of their pursuers. Vondulyth regains consciousness on Gronja’s shoulder in just enough time to hurl a javelin at the minotaur, striking the first blow against the unnatural creature. Nevyn intimidates the lead archaeologist into telling him what they found inside the cavern. They removed a giant seeing stone from where the moonlight now shines on the isolated dais.
  • Wasting no time, the wood elf druid seizes the stone and tries to commune with the magic artefact as Avria casts the spell of Guidance on him. Nevyn’s eyes roll into the back of his head as he succeeds to not only calm the undead chasing the party, but sends them back from whence they came. Not sleeping, but merely reset to attack again. As an afterthought, he asks the stone “Who are you?”

Memorable lines:

  • “Orcs only go prone for meat!” – Konang to group when told to drop to the ground

Unanswered Questions:

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