(6/26/02 7:22 am)
Player Campaign Log (sorry for the delay)|
Starday 15th Readying
Our trip back to Hommlet turned out to be quite enlightening. Rae asked to stop an hour’s ride from the Moathouse saying that we needed to discuss some things. She appeared to wish to clear the air a little and explain her motivation, I think in an attempt to rebuild a little trust within the group. She told us that the core of her motivation is simply to defeat the enemy, nothing more nothing less, and was saying this so we could understand her as she would prefer to have companions she could trust and rely on. She spoke at length describing her troubled upbringing as a Half elven child sold into slavery, her training to fight and her interest in a secret society that I will not name here as Rae states that they are homicidally touchy about their existence being known about. She spoke of her efforts to join the society and her eventual success. Rae even acknowledged some of her own flaws and offered to try and moderate her aggressive attitudes to people we meet, recognising that alienating them was harming her cause. That should be interesting to watch.
Rae followed up with perhaps the best revelation of all, certainly from the point of getting reactions. As a final guesture of trust she revealed that the society was formed exclusively of people who’s abilities mimic those of the infamous Black Guard.
This did tie up many of the suspicions that had been forming in my mind.
Reactions amongst the group were interesting. Bane looked decidedly worried. That’s the first time I have seen him look less than confident about anything. Ichabardpromptly dredges out an infamous Blackguard from history, thinks for a minute and goes pale as a sheet. The conversation went on for a while, mainly with Rae reassuring Bane and Ichabardthat she was not going to kill them and asking if they were committed to fighting the Enemy. In the end I thin Rae’s gamble worked and we are a slightly more stable group. Out of interest I asked if Rae would be willing to repeat her assertions and promises with me reading her thoughts. She readily agreed. That with the fact that I have never known her lie or break her word is enough to convince me she in sincere. Frankly I have no intention of looking inside her head. There are some things best left undisturbed.
We returned to Hommlet and left Tangrels body with the church of St. Cuthbert. Rae is getting interesting reactions from there, somewhere between fear and distaste. We returned to the house to rest.
Early the following morning I received a letter asking if I would meet one Azannyrovar Drukardwarovar at the Welcome Wench.
We returned to the church immediately after breakfast and spoke with a Priest by the name of Turgeon. A pleasant enough fellow and apparently the second most powerful priest in the church. The Canoness was absent, possibly becoming so at news of our arrival. Rae then demonstrated her more diplomatic self. An interesting technique. Whilst discussing the circumstances of Tangrel’s death Turgeon said that if his soul had been taken then they could not bury him there. This clearly irritated Rae (the throbbing vein on her neck being one good clue) and she promtly handed the discussion over to me and clamed up, refusing to say another word for the rest of the meeting. In the end we left with Tangrel unburied and the Priest willing to ascertain the true state and situation of Tangrel’s soul. That could be bad.
The Welcome Wench has changed a little. There was a barmaid I did not recognise that turned out to be the owner’s daughter. She was helpful, nice to talk to and a stark contrast to the staff that had been there previously. Apparently they have a staff shortage there at the moment. Wonder who we killed?
Azannyrovar was to be found behind a small wall of ale tankards. A dwarf as the name did indicate he was jovial and welcoming and actually pleased to see me. Makes a change to encounter someone who does not seem to want me dead. It turns out that my second cousin (who I do not think I have even met) was owed a clan debt by the clan Azannyrovar belongs to. The debt has been willed to my Father who has apparently asked Azannyrovar to look after me. I believe the terms of the agreement is to watch over me for a year and a day or to save my life three times. The way things are going Azannyrovar may have discharged his clan debt by the end of the month!
Proof that the world is a lot smaller than it seems came with the introduction of Azannyrovar to the rest of my companions. He knows, respects, and has fought alongside Bane and has encountered and worked for Rae in the past, apparently whilst we were in Brindinford.
During the afternoon I penned a letter to Rufus and Burne about the situation in the Moathouse. The letter served as a good opportunity to pass on the information that they, as leaders of this community, need to know, and to start to patch up relationships between us. It’s careful wording should arouse their interest. I wonder how they will respond to it.
(6/26/02 7:24 am)
Sunday 16th Readying
We returned to the church and again spoke with Turgeon. He gave us the good news that Tangrel’s soul has moved on and was not, as Tangrel thought, with the Enemy. You would think a Cleric would know where his soul was. I get the feeling a little more was known about the circumstances of Tangrel’s death than Turgeon was letting on though that may just be the paranoia these last couple of months have brought about in me. Tangrel was buried that morning in a simple service. The concept of getting him raised barely cropped up, with the only comment being a question from Bane about whether it was possible. I don’t think either Rae or I would like to see him back, possibly for different reasons. Knowing Tangrel he would immediately try exact revenge, regardless of the reasons for our actions and we have to kill him again. No one wins.
I spent the afternoon finishing the exchange of spells with Zirosh. That provided a pleasant counterpoint to the morning. Azannyrovar is taking his debt very seriously and waited the whole time Zirosh and I were talking. I see there is a lot I need to know about Dwarves.
(6/26/02 7:26 am)
Moonday 17th Readying
Two successes in one day.
Captain Elmo tracked me down this morning to ask about the Moathouse. He has been ordered to investigate it by Rufus and Burne. He listened to what I had to say about it, and to the advice I gave. I think that on the whole we parted at the end of the meeting on better terms. A first step towards improving relations with this town. Perhaps letters will provide a better method of communicating with the towns leadership.
The second success was a visit to Spugnor. He actually seemed happy to see me and we were able to agree on a small exchange of knowledge, filling a gap in my spell selections. There is still some restraint in allowing each other to know what spells we have but that serves to make the negotiating more challenging.
Starday 22nd Readying
The last few days have been spent working on spells and items, a welcome change of pace. My companions have been running around asking questions of the sage and others and this evening we sat down and decided where we should go next. A few worthy notes came out of the discussions. We have identified three places we should look at; the Temple at the crater; the village of Rastor from where the wagon came; and the ruined town of Nulb to the north.
It was also important to note that I, according to Rae’s servants, removed the chest from the Mill from the house. This would indicate that there is someone else in Hommlet working for the Enemy who is adept at disguise or magic.
We established a system so we could identify ourselves for certain to the servants without putting them at risk and made the decision to visit Nulb.
A last note for today. Rae told us that she spoke to that Canoness. By her account Rae’s concept of diplomacy is still a little unusual however no blood was shed so all in all there has been an improvement. Still the account suggests that Rae was somewhat more blunt that most people can cope with and I have no idea the kind of effect this will have on the Canoness. Most concerning was Rae letting slip that she is continuing to put me forward as the ‘diplomatic’ face of the group when she feels people don’t want to talk to her, even when I am not present.
We took the time to sit down and divide the spoils of earlier expeditions. Fortuitously, within the hoard, there was a ring that shields the mind from varied forms of detection. I have backed Rae’s desire to obtain this as about the last thing I want is a potential ally successfully determining Rae’s tendency towards evil or getting a look inside her mind.
Moonday 24rd Readying
We visited Nulb yesterday, a dangerous and unpleasant place.
The trail there was quiet and we were unmolested save by the weather. Clouds, wind and rain made the latter half of the trip truly miserable. Spirit dug herself deep into my pocket in an effort to stay warm and dry. I wish I had the same option. We reached the edge of the town, facing a rickety bridge over a rain-swollen river with woodland to our left. The town looked silent and deserted, a grubby ruin covered with moss and vines and half hidden by the downpour. Az went forward to scout and check the bridge whilst we sat in a growing state of nervousness. One by one we began to notice things amiss around us. My eyes caught glimpses of movement in the town but could not see what made them. Bane began to get jumpy as he noted that the woods around us were utterly silent, with no hint of the usual background noises of birdsong or wildlife. Az, on returning, noted the woods around were decaying and unhealthy and went to check to see if anything lay hidden within them.
Perhaps unsurprisingly something did. One moment the woods to our flank are silent and empty, the next Az is bracing his spear to strike a charging animal of quite unnatural size. Ichabardexclaims that it is the largest wolverine he has ever seen, a fact not lost on Az who was nose to nose with it. With the arrival of Bane and Rae the creature was doomed. I felt it unnecessary to use spells against it as well and sure enough moments later Az rolled to the side, stood and skewered the poor beast.
We took some time crossing into the town as Rae’s horse had to have the barding removed before we crossed the creaking bridge. One in the town the silence was more noticeable. We selected a nearby building that looked largely intact, apparently once an inn, as a potential place to rest for the night and entered. Rae and Bane moved further into the inn and Rae commented that she felt and unnatural chill in the air.
A few of the horses were brought inside and Rae and bane moved deeper into the inn. Az started to check the area around and above us, climbing to the balcony. He was there but a moment when Ichabardjumped, whirling around, and exclaimed, saying he had been struck from behind. Az was back down with us with commendable speed and we scanned the room for signs of an assailant, calling out to Rae and Bane as we did so.
The two warriors had just entered the room when Ichabardslumped a translucent sword visible running clear through him. Holding the sword was the apparition of a man who must have been young when he died. My companions weapons swung through it with little or no effect. Indeed only the stream of missiles from my hand appeared to cause it discomfort. It rose up from the floor and changed, transforming into a hideous image of it’s true dead self. Bane and Azannyrovar paled and shuddered as they saw it. More ineffectual attacks and another stream of missiles forced it to withdraw, filling the room with mist as it went. Given cover it was time to leave and within a few seconds everyone had reached the street. Fortunately the horses followed Rae’s as she rode it through the inn’s door. None of us had any desire to return inside and elected to return to Hommlet with our deceased companion. More as a guesture of annoyance that in an attempt to harm the apparition I flung a fireball through the door as we left. It caused a satisfying amount of damage and succeeded in setting the inn aflame despite the rain. The slight lift in spirits was worth the spell.
We rode through the night and reached Hommet in the early morning, most of us making for the church of St. Cuthbert (Rae elected to find something to do elsewhere fortunately).
The Canoness was good enough to speak with us and agreed to return our fallen comrade to life the following day. She is a very different person when Rae is not present. It is nice to know that her feelings towards Rae do not effect her attitude towards the rest of us.
Az and I took an hour to have a drink and some decent food at the Welcome Wench before retiring. He makes quite good company.
(6/26/02 7:27 am)
Godsday 25th Readying 501
Ichabardwas returned to us today by the Canoness and Bane and Az restored to health. It took a quite sizeable donation. The Canoness was good enough to restore Ichabardto full health at the same time. I imagine that receiving enough funds to pay for a new wing to the church as one handy lump sum put her in a good mood.
I can only assume that my wits had deserted me yesterday. It was not until this morning that I associated the apparition of yesterday with the research I have done into the manifestations of ghosts. Coming face to face with the unfortunate soul must have rattled me more than I thought. An important lesson to remember there. Take the time to think!
Yesterdays encounter was unusual in that the ghost was able to physically attack Ichebard. Unlike anything I had read about it seemed able to bridge the gap between incorporeal and corporeal beings without striking at its preys life-force. The manifestation of its decayed form was every bit as horrifying as I had heard. I should have remembered that ghosts are usually tied to a location and could possibly be destroyed buy destroying the location that they haunt. Perhaps my fireball came close to destroying it than I first thought. It is also worth noting that this particular ghost was able to use the abilities it had in life to great effect. He may well have been a capable man in life, just as he is a menace in death.
I could do with finding a source of the spell my old master mentioned that could detect the presence of undead. I think if I manage to find that spell I will try to take time to travel back to Nulb and destroy any places there that may contain other ghosts, such things should not be left to suffer eternally and prey on unwary travellers.
We have made camp a goodly distance from Nulb so that we can reach it during daylight. I think that tonight I will spend my time in a rope trick.
Watersday 26th Readying
A broken nights sleep. During the night some men tried to steal our horses. Not the brightest of individuals all things considered. Still since only Rae and a sleeping Bane were down camped in the open they might have thought that they had the advantage of numbers. By the time I was awake only screams and the sparkling blue glow of Rae’s flail swinging gave away the locations of the bandits. In the end we lost nothing, and they lost everything. Only one of them survived. We left him, stripped and unconscious in the woods. If he is lucky enough to survive then perhaps his stories may dissuade others from stealing horses in the night.
The weather changed for the worse again as we approached Nulb for the second time. Remembering the state of the woodland I wonder if this weather is entirely natural. The constant damp and half-light would explain the state of the trees. Another reason to look at this area. Is it the town or the remains of the temple that causes this, if indeed it is a real effect.
Nulb was as unsettling as it had been the first time with glimpses of movement caught just on the edge of vision. We went through it at a canter, fortunately without any incident more serious than Ichabard trying to fall off the bridge. I am beginning to wonder if he is in some way cursed.
Rae has once again managed to irritate a member of our group, describing Az and Ichabard as being ‘along for the ride’. Spirit fortunately was alert enough to hear a distant scream of pain and that gave me an excuse to halt the argument. My companions seem to have a talent for locating the most idiotic places to have arguments.
We spotted the thin wisp of smoke from a fire in the distance and Spirit flew up to get a look at the source of the fire. She reported that ahead of us was a huge building with many creatures around it.
Az more than proved his usefulness then. Despite his disagreement with Rae he volunteered to scout and with the aid of a little invisibility crept forward. He was some considerable time but when he returned he was able to draw out the layout of the buildings and their surroundings, inform us of the presence of Hobgoblins and give locations for guards. I must admit the provision of such detailed information had us at a loss. As a group we are so used to acting without reasonable information that it’s provision caught us out utterly.
More concerning was his description of the courtyard. Two hobgoblins were chained to posts in front of the temple, one burned down one side and the other clawed to death. The courtyard itself had a number of long burns and a single roughly circular burn a few feet across marked the temple doors. His description of a conversation between the gate guards suggested something bad had happened recently. The whole scene, as described by Az was so reminiscent of the courtyard of the Moathouse I could not help thinking that maybe the Blue dragon was here. A huge assumption to make with so little evidence but it was a feeling I could not shake off and articulated the suspicion to the others. I do not think any of them really believe me but Rae at least is willing to plan for it, in the hope it is the worst possible of eventualities.
We circled round to the rear of the temple laying up the horses in a small copse and settling in to wait for dusk.
For a destroyed temple the place seems remarkably intact and is likely to prove difficult to enter. At least with Az watching from a treetop there are no arguments going on while we await the fall of dusk.
(6/26/02 7:30 am)
Apology from the DM|
Let me apologise for not posting the previous sessions until today, work has kept me rather busy
Second, thanks to all the ppl that mentioned about having Big U retreat to the temple and re-inforce the Hobgoblins, last nights session was terrific (post to follow...)
Third, my other players have started to create logs (well one writes letters home, and the other keeps a journal) all of which can be read at:
[If people would prefer i can post them on this board, but dont want to fill it with similar stories]
(6/26/02 7:34 am)
Campaign Log (Wooo im up-to-date now)|
And now for last nights session (and boy was it fun)...
Earthday 27th Readying
We advanced with the oncoming night, using the dimming light to help hide our approach to the temple wall. Az lead, climbing the corner tower and waiting there. He managed to shoot an arrow with a message saying that there were goblins inside and appeared to be waiting for us to advance. We did so, with the continual clanking of Rae’s armour muffled by a spell of silence from Ichabard. We were quite close to the tower when Az beckoned urgently and disappeared from sight. We broke into a run (leaving Rae far in the rear). Reaching the tower I was faced with a sheer wall and a need for haste. A potion of levitation allowed my safe ascent though I arrived at the top only moments before Bane who appeared to barely break step as he went from running to climbing. A small hole at the top of the tower appeared to be the most likely means of access, a conclusion confirmed by the bloody evidence of Az’s passage.
I got stuck. Nasty feeling realising that you just managed to block the route in and are making a nearly helpless target. Bane provided a somewhat painful solution, assisting my struggles with his boot.
Inside I heard the sounds of a struggle lower in the tower, drew a wand and headed downwards. A pair of flasks of alchemists fire met me as I rounded the corner. Who would trust goblins with alchemists fire? Slightly scorched and thoroughly annoyed I carried on with the flame theme and torched the two goblins with a burning hands spell from the wand. Bane was following so I carried on, drawing a second wand as I went. Arriving on the ground floor I spied Az struggling with three assailants that were trying to hold him down while a fourth stabbed him. Colour spray and the arrival of Bane put a virtually instant end to the fight.
All this and not a single spell cast from memory. Wands are most useful.
Now that we had a moments pause Spirit, who had flown to the wall to watch the courtyard interrupted to point out that Ichabard was standing at the base of the tower still having successfully climbed to a height of 2 feet before falling back into the undergrowth. In the end it took a rope.
With the last ghost of daylight providing illumination we moved along the rear wall to a ruined building seeking a hiding place. For once I had not memorised Rope trick and I think the rest of the party were a little put out at not having a safe bolt-hole.
The ruin contained stairs to the cellar. The cellar contained a trapdoor to a wine cellar below. The wine cellar contained hobgoblins, briefly.
With us relatively fresh we decided to try to obtain entry to the Temple proper. Ichabard chose this moment to declare a belief that dragons are noble creatures worthy of our respect and that we should talk rather than fight should we be fortunate enough to encounter one. It’s rare that the entire group is rendered speechless. The peace would have been enjoyable if I was not suffering a flashback of our first encounter with a dragon at the time. There followed a few brief enquiries into Ichabard’s state of mind, a state put into greater doubt when he volunteered to go in first to talk. Apparently he had forgotten about such trivia as the hoard of Hobgoblins guarding the entrance and the fact that the dragons existence was speculation (spurred perhaps by paranoia on my part). With the presence of the hobgoblins back in mind he decided that the best course of action was for him, in the event of a dragon appearing whilst we were fighting, to break off and go and talk to it. I don’t think he took my request for him not to come between the dragon and myself well, particularly on my explanation that I did not wish to be caught in the blast when it breathed on him.
There were few objections to his suggested second course of action, probably in case it caused him to come up with another, even less sane suggestion. I think the others were assuming that we were going to have to get him raised again. I feel a little ashamed to write that it did occur to me that his intention to face a dragon alone, should we encounter one here or in the future, would buy us a few additional seconds to act whilst the beast drew breath again.
We crept up to the side of the temple and, as we moved carefully towards the door, Az took the opportunity to look in a couple of windows. He said that he could see a fair number of beads and some large creature chained in the main room. Again we moved forwards, Az in the lead until we were within a few paces of the steps. Once again our ability to sneak up on opponents came to the fore as I managed to fail to notice a small pile of rubble and knocked it over. Az froze, listened, then charged and the battle was joined.
By the time we reached the entrance there was but a single hobgoblin there desperately fending off Az’s blows. Ichabard joined Az and Bane leapt past into the doorway to the temple. It was of course pitch black in there. A hastily hurled sunrod provided illumination inside the temple and revealed a couple of hobgoblins hiding there. We dispatched the one outside and moved into the temple.
It was at this time that we heard the guards at the outer gate become aware of us, though we hoped that it would be a few rounds before they arrived.
Within things were working quite well. The hobgoblins were no real match I was able to launch a few more sunrods from my crossbow to illuminate areas of the temple. A javelin flew through the doorway announcing the arrival of the gate guard. Ichabard faced them from inside the door and was a little put out when they elected to stand outside and throw javelins at him.
Deep inside the temple we could hear alarms being raised and someone in there released a pack of hounds. Their baying drowned out other sounds as it echoed round the temple. Then they charged at Rae. Definitely a mistake.
The pool of light from one of the sunrods revealed Hobgoblins massing to charge us from one wing of the temple. A nice close group of warriors, lovely. It had to be the perfect time a place to let them know that someone in our group could cast fireball. Nothing survived. At my side Az shouted a warning about some creature he had just seen released. I caught a glimpse of a huge furry form climbing up one of the pillars into the darkness.
Ichabard seemed to be in trouble. Unwilling to rush four foes he was trying to avoid their javelins instead whilst blocking their way into the temple. I rushed past and incinerated three of them with a sheet of flame from my wand and Ichabard charged.
At this point I could not help feeling that things were going rather well. Aside from a few minor cuts and bruises we were in good shape and the Hobgoblins seemed largely impotent. The creature was a slight concern but if the Hobgoblins had been able to control it I felt that we were probably able to handle it.
Far back in the temple we saw a Hobgoblin appear on the steps that lead up to a large set of doors, he appeared to be watching us and was joined by a second. They made no move to attack as Rae and Bane advanced. A deep rumbling voice echoed through the temple. Az told me later that it said that the Hobgoblins should ‘leave us to him’. One of pair seemed to leap aside landing badly and the other pressed himself against the stone railing at the side to the stairs. It looked as if something large had moved between them but there was nothing visible at all.
Rae spotted the creature swinging closer, using the relief carvings on the pillars for handholds. It appeared to be at home leaping from cloumn to column far from the floor. She readied herself and it leapt, snarling and spitting to land in the pool of light in front of Rae. A huge ape with deep black fur and enormous arms faced our party’s Blackguard. I almost felt sorry for it. It shuffled forwards and swiped at Rae, catching her a blow that made her armour ring like a bell. Rae responded with two mighty blows from her flail. Bane raced in from the side and drove his sword into the creature’s side. It fell.
Any sense of victory was short lived. A thunderclap overwhelmed all other sound within the temple and brilliant white light illuminated the hideous frescoes that covered the all the stone surfaces. We gained our first look at the entire interior of the temple as Rae and Bane danced and jerked within the bolt of lightning. The detail was pretty much lost on us as we focused on the blue Dragon (I think it deserves the capital letter) that faded into existence beyond Rae and Bane.
Though I would not tell the others I could not help but admire it’s restraint and timing. It waited until it could catch both our warriors in its breath before entering the fray.
A stream of magic missiles snaked towards our foe winding though the pillars only to be drawn splash against it’s skin without apparently harming it. Not good at all.
Then, from behind me, came words that challenged my belief that I was awake. ‘Alright, leave the dragon to me’
Ichebard raced past, a flat out sprint down the centre of the temple as Rae and Bane dived for cover and began guzzling potions. I had a moment to incant a spell of protection. Even from this distance I could see the dragons chest swelling again. I was forced to fall back on what is becoming a traditional last-ditch defence. The dragon vanished in a mass of webbing that hung between the convenient columns around it.
Ichabard arrived, sliding to a halt in the open before the great beast.
I had hoped that he had a plan, some clever ruse to gain the creatures attention and interest.
‘Erm’ was not a good start.
‘Hold dragon, your life depends on it!’ was definitely a worse follow up.
The dragon reared up as if affronted, an embodiment of arrogant power, focused on Ichabard and exhaled.
Ichabard must have succeeded in annoying it for the bolt of lightning that issued forth shattered the stone floor around him and hurled Ichabards corpse flew a full fifteen feet leaving a trail of smoke and the stink of burned flesh. The lifeless body came to rest against a pillar. There was a moments stunned silence as the echoes died out.
Our fortunes had reversed. In the space of a dozen heartbeats we had gone from victory to near defeat. Ichabard dead, Bane and Rae seriously wounded and a dragon enraged and unharmed intent on hunting us down. Bane and Rae were feverishly quaffing potions and trying to heal themselves. Az rushed in with a curing wand and aided Bane.
The webbing shuddered. The faint shadow of the Dragon became more distinct as it tore its way towards the edge of the web. I heard the dragon call for our surrender in the common tongue. It got no response.
Bane told me later that I shouted something about beads, probably referring to the bead of force he already had in his hands though in truth I don’t remember. I was busy trying to think it any of the spells I had would have much effect. It’s negation of my magic missiles was causing me severe problems.
I saw Rae lean around the stonework she was using for cover and throw something at the dragon. I would swear it looked surprised as it was hurled backwards as the bead of force detonated. I imagine it’s surprise turned to pain and confusion as Bane hurled a second striking it from the side. Neither trapped it but in many ways that was good. It must have still been dazed from the impacts when my fireball exploded directly above it. It didn’t appear to make any attempt to dodge as it’s upper torso was enveloped in flame. Now truly enraged it tore itself out of the remnants of the webbing around its legs and turned just in time to receive Bane’s charge. Bane himself was in a frenzy. His first blow struck true and he seemed to barely notice as the dragon bit and clawed at him. Az arrived, flanking the creature, and Bane struck again two more blows, each cutting deep into the dragons hide. It was clearly in pain now, bleeding heavily and almost as unsteady as Bane appeared to be. I had a fleeing that it would flee and as I could not hurl my last fireball without harming my companions, waited in anticipation.
Another blast of lightning was spat forth. Bane twisted aside catching only a small part of it. Fortunately the bolt seem weaker than the others, perhaps a reflection on the Dragon’s state of health. Wings unfurled and beat downwards lifting the stricken Dragon’s body into the air. Bane and Az struck at it and I heard it bellow again before starting to fly towards the stairs. My last decent spell streaked towards it and erupted into a sadly inaccurate and weak fireball that did little more that singe it as it flew. Our foe seemed to be in a terrible state, unable to lift it’s bulk more than a few feet from the floor and intent on reaching the doors and the waiting Hobgoblins as if there was some succour there.
The end came in the form of Az. Seeing our quarry escaping he levelled his spear and charged towards it, those boots of his giving his short legs the turn of speed he needed. The bright spearpoint took the dragon in its soft underbelly and bit deeply bringing the dragon to the floor unconscious.
In focussing on the Dragon we had forgotten the Hobgoblins on the steps, or discounted them. They surged forward, one cutting Az deeply whilst the other reached the fallen dragons side and reached forward.
It got up.
A hobgoblin healer with a curing wand! I sent magic missiles curling into the healer as I ran forward. I saw Az strike at the Dragon and miss. Rae leapt forward, over the other Hobgoblins attempt to trip her and landed a huge blow on the flagstones where the dragon had been lying. It looked for a second as if the creature would be able to escape or attack again. Bane, staggering and bleeding from dozens of wounds leapt at it and struck it down with another blow from his greatsword. More magic missiles and a flurry of blows from Rae cleared the Hobgoblins from around the Dragon.
It was over.
Another note on Dragons
If this encounter has taught anything it is the cunning that these creatures can show. The timing of its attack to get the greatest effect from it’s breath was awesome. It’s efforts gather protections from those attacks that had been most telling before caused we serious trouble, negating one of my key methods of attack. I believe that it managed to use the Hobgoblin to further enhance its strength and power before it attacked us. This was and example of a foe that should never be underestimated.
Ichabards demise has also given a slight insight into the character of these creatures. Whilst flattery may have worked, threats, or words that a creature of such arrogance may take as a threat will bring immediate aggression. It is interesting to see how it had, in a few short weeks, taken over a tribe of ‘lesser’ creatures and was incorporating them it’s efforts to protect itself, apparently controlling them through fear. I do not look forward to meeting another of it’s kind.
After the death of the dragon there was no resistance from the temple. Any remaining Hobgoblins must have slipped away quietly. We had time to scour the building before relocating to the tower in the corner of the curtain wall. Az appears to be well pleased with the dragon’s teeth that he claimed. They appear to be of some significance to him. We will have to do something with the carcass in the morning.
(6/26/02 12:39 pm)
Re: Campaign Log (Wooo im up-to-date now)|
It's great to see you back!
Your player has a very good writing style. I love some of his asides and comments on various creatures that the group has already encountered.
My favorite line, though, was: "The wine cellar contained hobgoblins, briefly."
Nice use of the dragon -- even BADD would be proud of that fight, I think.
I'm looking forward to seeing more of your players' exploits... please keep posting them!
(6/28/02 9:53 am)
Re: Player Campaign Log (sorry for the delay)|
Just had to say that was great! Tell him to keep it up!
(7/10/02 12:04 pm)
Re: Player Campaign Log (sorry for the delay)|
Oh, sh*t... I just have to ask to insure myself: You can register, right? You're just unregistered because you didnt bother for some reason?
Cous otherwise we will now never learn what happened to Muratis Smithison, vulcan necromancer extraordinarie...
Edit: Ah, nevermind... just thought I'd check out that link (d'oh!) and found...
Edited by: Sacremas at: 7/11/02 10:47:25 pm
(7/31/02 6:32 am)
Re: Player Campaign Log (sorry for the delay)|
Has there been a hiatus? Do we get to hear more of the character's experiences?
I love the point of view from the player rather than the DM...
(8/1/02 7:30 am)
Re: Player Campaign Log (sorry for the delay)|
Check out the link you too, the Diary of Muratis Smithison is there too... but then again, that havent been updated either the last time I checked.
A mysterious stranger
(8/6/02 12:59 pm)
Player Campaign log|
Ok, a 3 week holiday followed by 2 weeks downtime....
We started assault on CRM on Monday, so hopefully journal updates should be landing on my desk soon
(and its taken me like a week to register!)
A mysterious stranger
(8/7/02 1:01 am)
Re: Player Campaign log|
A mysterious stranger
(8/8/02 6:48 am)
Re: Player Campaign log|
Good to see you back in action, then.
Between your campaign log and Andorax's players... well, it's no wonder I spend so much time checking this board.
A mysterious stranger
(8/12/02 11:29 pm)
Player Campaign Log (continued)|
Sorry for the dely, for some reason ive had problems logging on to this board...Here is a continuation of the Necromancers Journal, Enjoy!
Before we retired Az decided to make a thorough search of the tower, perhaps to avoid cooking. That said he uncovered a hidden trapdoor in the stone floor of one of the side rooms. It opened into a vertical shaft some 30 feet deep that ended in a small room. After Az ensured that it was safe we descended and found a tunnel, only five foot high led away from the temple, out under the curtain wall. After only a short distance we found that it was blocked by rubble, a collapse that appeared Az said had happened years ago. Bane thought that the tunnel had not been used in a long time so we returned to the room. The only other contents of the room were a box and a coffer. They were opened with some care and found to contain a small fortune in coin and a pair of vials, the contents of which radiated magic. Strange things to leave there unless this was some kind of escape route. Perhaps the identification of the contents of the vials will provide an answer.
The night passed quietly and a faint and hazy sun greeted us as we left the tower. Interestingly clouds are still visible in the direction of Nulb.
I have noticed that Az seems to need almost no sleep. Now I come to think on it I cannot recall ever seeing him sleep for more than a couple of hours in a night. I must remember to ask him whether that is common amongst his people or particular to him. It does not fit with what little knowledge I have about Dwarves.
We checked the horses before breakfast and found then to be more than fine. All traces of the decrepit state they were in after their encounter with the ghost in Nulb were gone. Bane could find no tracks in the area where they had been and I could see no lingering magic. I find it hard to believe that all the horses would recover on their own in the same night and have to conclude that someone or something aided them. Considering the amount of effort it took to return Bane and Az to health healing the horses would take a great deal of effort. Fortunately no one was in a mind to go looking for our benefactor and we are making preparations to leave.
Freeday 28th Readying 501
There were few events of note on the way back to Hommlet. We elected to travel back by the route we knew, via Nulb. Rae helped make the decision with a simple comment, ‘Better the devil you know’. I can only assume that she was referring to the route home. We passed through Nulb at a fair pace and were out the other side before Az mentioned seeing a figure in a wide brimmed hat tending one of the gardens. He said that the rain was washing down the hat so the figure was not a ghost at least. Again nobody wanted to investigate further.
If this figure was a man I cannot help wondering who would chose to live in such a place. Several times when here we have caught glimpses of movement. Might this be the source? I wonder if this figure could shed light on what happened to restore our horses to health?
We reached Hommlet late in the night without any further incident.
Today has been quiet. I have spent the day examining the items we retrieved from the temple. A mixed bunch but they will be useful. Bane and Az took Ichabard’s body to the temple. The Canoness must be getting used to having us around. She had the spells to raise the dead memorised and returned Ichabard to life there and then. His demeanour appears to have changed. The spark that drove him seems to have been quenched along with his illusions about dragons. He has made the decision that our lifestyle is not for him and that he intends to apprentice himself to a sage. With his share of the coinage from the temple he should be well able to choose whatever lifestyle he wishes.
Az reported that the Canoness had a visitor when they arrived. A knight, wearing the symbol of Heironeous, with a most commanding presence. He is apparently here investigating something. Perhaps he is looking into the death of Torea and disappearance Alein the two paladins from Brindinford.
Starday 1st Coldeven 501
I encountered Elmo this morning. He appears to have had a most educational visit to the Moathouse and seem genuinely grateful for the information I gave him about the dangers there. The priest that went with him, Yether of the Temple of Pelor, had them reseal the pit and place wards there so that they would know if it was disturbed. He was good enough to recommend an inn within Verbabonc, the Bronze Unicorn. I get the feeling that a fair number of people in the village are looking forward to our, or at least Rae’s, departure.
I managed to get to talk to the Sage before we left. I have asked him to look into what happened at Nulb. Perhaps with a little more knowledge some of the ghosts there could be permanently laid to rest. If he has the time he may be able to compile a list of other dwellings in the area that were ruined and have not been reoccupied along with what they were, their means of support and why they have not been rebuilt. It should be interesting to see if there are some that are not sited over evil temples, hideous artifacts and the like. One such site may make a good place for a home.
A quiet days journey, fair weather, and a lack of bandits queuing up to attack us. All in all a good day. Bane was amusing whilst we set up camp. He seems to view my rope trick much in the same way many would view Rae’s armour. He can see how it is useful, even and important part of my abilities but he would really rather not know what is inside.
Watersday 5th Coldeven 501
We arrived in Verbabonc this afternoon. An impressive place and quite the largest example of civilisation I have visited. The gate guards were civil and provided directions to the Inn recommended by Elmo. It appears to be just what he said, a little pricey but calm and trouble free. We had a good meal in the evening and relaxed. Everyone seemed to be in fine spirits and Rae even extracted herself from her armour in and attempt to blend in and not attract too much attention. That said she still wore armour, just not as much and without the spikes, bloodstains, and smell. In effect the meal was a farewell to Ichabard and had something of a party atmosphere. He will be missed though I do think he was not suited to the level of danger that we as a group have regularly faced.
Earthday 6th Coldeven 501
A really productive day. Az and I left early after breakfast to explore a little and see what we could find of interest. There were any number of ‘guides’ who could use their knowledge of the city to lead us to the sorts of places we wanted to go. We started off with seeking out weapons smiths for Az. He appeared to need to trade in his bow for something different. There appear to be a remarkable number of enchanted weapons around. The first place we visited showed us a bow that transforms it’s arrows into small bolts of lightning. The second was more interesting to Az and was run by a dwarf. I am afraid I forgot the name of the place but Az seemed to be most interested, talking with the owner in the Dwarven tongue as he tried various weapons. The only thing of interest to me was hearing the language spoken at length. The arrays of sharpened steel whilst clearly of good quality contained little that I could use. We left a little later with a couple of well crafted javelins and went in search of somewhere more to my tastes.
By one route and another we ended up at Bethains coffee house. I have never encountered a place like it. We walked in to a discussion on the merits of different forms of dispel magic. There were half a dozen mages sitting and talking or reading quietly. I talked with Bethain and secured access to a couple of spells missing from my repertoire and got involved in the discussions. Az was clearly feeling out of place and after a short while decided that I had little need of protection and left promising to return later in the day. I would swear he was only gone five minutes but when we left the sun was low in the sky and the torchbearers were appearing on the streets ready to light the ways of those who would pay them.
At the Inn we settled down to another meal. Rae appeared a little late bringing with her a figure garbed in spiked plate armour, now covered in mud and fruit. In essence it looked like a miniature Rae though I think if anyone had decided to through fruit at Rae more blood would have been evident. He was introduced to us as Krallovar, a cleric of Wee-Jas and was looking to join our group. He got off to a poor start. Virtually his first words were directed to Az in Dwarvish. I picked up a couple of words from context. He seemed to be asking Az to do something and whatever it was was not well received. When the food was brought to our table the barman had to ask this newcomer to remove his armour if he was planning to remain in the common room. Instead he elected to retire to his room. It seems that Rae has managed to find someone more antisocial and less diplomatic than herself. I can see the need to explain a few things to him in the very near future about the level of unwanted attention he is going to attract if this is a true indication of his character. If he wants to remain with us he is going to need to be a really good warrior and cleric to make his company worthwhile. He has invited us to a private breakfast tomorrow to talk. We will see what he has to say for himself then.
Rae has spoken with a member of the secret society she is associated with, apparently telling him everything that has gone on, including the death of Tangrel. She seems to see no possible consequences of this. I am sleeping in a rope trick tonight.
Freeday 7th Coldeven 501
The day started with a clear bright dawn and breakfast with Krallovar. I held on to my suspicions of him and cast detect poison before entering the room, ensuring that none of the others were in a position to see me do so. He had had quite a banquet laid on, so much so that I believe even Snub would have been hard pressed to make a dent in it. Krallovar had the sense not to turn up in armour, a better start than last night, and was covered with a hooded robe worn in a fashion that hid his features. He apologised for the night before and introduced himself giving his old clan name (Kormaikovar Havintakovar Krallovar Helliekovel Khorflintov of the Stoneforge Clan) and identified himself as a priest of Wee Jas. His manner of speech was somewhat different to last night, so much so that I think he has spent some considerable time deciding what to say and rehearsing it. He spoke of a ‘gift’ given to him by the Goddess that he sees as a double-edged one and was daft enough to look to Rae for confirmation. He didn’t get it of course and verbally slapped him down for presuming to know anything about her. Nice to know there are some things in life to can rely on. Pity one of them is the consistency of Rae’s character.
Krallovar told us that a creature was bound into his flesh and talks to him, and that the process, and presence of the creature has left him hideous to look upon. At that point he drew back the hood of his cloak. I have seen worse, though seldom on anything living. Scars, tattoos, bloodshot eyes, and a truly mangy looking beard. I think he is more sensitive about his appearance than is truly justified. He is deeply unpleasant to look upon but does not come close to the worst things I have seen.
I felt it important to point out the amount of attention that wandering around in armour drew and how unwelcome that kind of attention is to us, a point seconded by Az. He took that without comment. Questioning about the creature in him and what it would mean to us brought little information of use. He says he feels healthier and more ‘resilient’, and that the creature speaks to him, but beyond that he either does not know or is not saying.
The presence of this ‘presence’ is concerning. It clearly talks to him empathicly and he does not seem to understand what it is thinking. If it can talk to other beings then we will have a spy in our midst continually. Being on the brink of ensuring that I cannot be spied upon by magic it would be most annoying to find that everything we do is being reported to another without our knowledge, no matter who that is. Krallovar seems certain that this creature cannot control him. I wonder if this belief has a basis in fact or in his hopes.
Starday 8th Coldeven 501
Last night was on of those nights where I found myself unable to sleep properly as thoughts tumbled through my head. It is amazing how many insights can come to you in that state halfway between dreaming and reality. I finally understood the missing piece to effects that I have been studying and on waking I was able to commit two new spells to memory. One of these I cast immediately as, should it work as planned, it should grant me knowledge of when I am being spied upon with magical effects.
After some consideration I again spent the day, and a not inconsiderable amount of money augmenting my spell selection. Looking at my performance in our recent conflicts I feel that the ability to increase the rate at which I can cast spells is becoming essential rather that a nicety. Hence I have purchased and transferred a spell of Haste to my spellbook. This meant that the bulk of the day was spent at Bethains.
On returning to the Bronze Unicorn I was treated to the first demonstration of my latest defence in action. As I walked through the door I clearly saw a shimmering in the air above Rae and Bane and, when I concentrated I found I could follow the spell back to it’s source and see an individual covered up in robes with a heavy hood. I got to see that his arms were covered in tatoos much like those I have seen on Rae. I was surprised to find that I could tell the rough direction and distance of the spy and that he was within the city.
I joined Rae and Bane and since they were discussing little of importance waited till the spell had ended before telling them that they had been under observation. Bane looked around. He really is unhappy around magic. Rae appeared to dismiss it in her typical fashion. If you can’t hit it, shrug it off.
The others turned up and a member of the inns staff told us that a back room had been booked to meet with us. Az investigated and found that there was a note asking us to meet at seven.
We waited, we went, we knocked, we entered.
Within the room were two men, one seated, one not, both sporting tatoos. Rae promptly went in and sat down next to the seated man. Her kind of people perhaps? She certainly seemed to know what they were if not who. Still I had no intention of sitting in there till I was comfortable. They didn’t object too strenuously to my casting a spell to check the room for invisible creatures and having assured myself that they were they only two strangers present locked the door and sat.
They were apparently members of the order that Owliver and Tangrel were part of and Rae associated with. It became rapidly clear that they either had no clue that their Enemy was active near Homlet or had been in Brindinford, or that they did not think it important. They did manage to clear up some misconceptions about who we had encountered and that the bulk of the priests we had fought against were part of another cult who worship the ‘Elder Elemental Eye’. The two in the room were clearly not interested in this cult and were somewhat against our having killed Priests of that cult to get to the one or two worshippers of the Enemy.
On the whole the meeting was a farce. Rae walked out in disgust after only a couple of minutes and attempts to get any useful thoughts or information were met with an apparent lack of knowledge on their part. Not a single clear or useful insight into the methods or servants of the Enemy was gleaned from them and the only useful aspect of the meeting was to give us a feeling for the level of interest, competence and dedication the Med Jai. Sadly lacking on all counts. I am fairly sure it was another of their order scrying us earlier. I asked them not to do it again.
Watersday 12th Coldeven 501
Arrived in Brindinford to quite a welcome. Within an hour of getting to the Reality Wrinkle we had received invitations to dine with the Baron, the high priest of Pelor, the new priest in charge of the temple of Heironeous and with the city council. The town seems to be thriving. The streets are clean, the guards efficient and proud of their job and while less busy there is a generally good-natured feeling about the town. The exterior to the Reality Wrinkle had been done up thought there was no clue as to who by. We elected to accept the Barons invitation that evening, not a hard choice there, and sent out messages to the others arranging to for various members of our group to see them over the next day or so.
The evening was friendly and on the whole went well. Rae was at her most diplomatic and managed not to cause offence. Az appeared to be uncomfortable there and was somewhat gruff and ill mannered. The Baron filled us in on events in the town over the last month or so. I got the impression that he has a little less power now after the events at the festival but on the whole that is no bad thing. He mentioned that the disappearance of Alean and the murder of Torea had drawn a group of Priests and Paladins from the temples of Heironeous and St. Cuthbert to the town to investigate. The have apparently declared it a church matter and, having talked to many of the people here at the time left without letting anyone know what they found.
Earthday 13th Coldeven 501
Had lunch with members of the town council in the Stony Gaze. Another friendly get together. The whole set up was very informal and the choice of venue was one of my old haunts. Similar stories to yesterday, slightly different slant. It is fairly clear that the council is more powerful than it was and is grateful to us for the part we played in saving the town. The second meeting of the day was at the church of Pelor. Rae unsurprisingly elected not to come and instead volunteered to visit the new Priest of Heironeous. Another meeting, another warm feeling. Comfortable and positive without any world shaking information.
I originally intended to look into selling the Reality Wrinkle in order to build a home somewhere. After the last couple of days I have decided to retain the Reality Wrinkle for a while and look into setting up home in the vicinity of Brindinford.
Starday 14th Coldeven 501
Rae has been having fun I fear. We had to delay our departure so that she could attend a church service at the temple of Heironeous. I have no doubt that there was a less than pure motive to this and judging by the length of time the service took something occurred. I must remember to find out what when we next pass through.
We set out to journey to Rastor in the early afternoon. So far it has been a quiet trip.
Moonday 17th Coldeven 501
Rastor, what an utter armpit! Now definitely top of the list of places I don’t what to stay in. The town was mucky, the Inn grotty and I will have to apologise to the horse for the state of the stables. We sat in the Inn while Az went hunting for information. He returned after a while with a fair bit of useful information. The Crater Mine is only a few miles away and the inhabitants known within the village. They see people travelling up to the mine to work and there are occasional visits for supplies. He said that he had talked with a Dwarf that was at the mine when the current occupants took over. A few important points came out.
Firstly the dwarves were removed from the mine by force, or at least threat of force. Secondly the current occupying force appeared within the mine rather than at the entrance suggesting that they tunnelled up into the mines or gained access through magic. Thirdly, whilst not liked the current occupants have left the village alone.
Later in the day we talked briefly with the Dwarf and he provided us with a partial map of the layout.
We could not help wondering if someone from the town was likely to let the mine know of our arrival (though we had said that we were invited up there to get work) and in the end we trekked a mile or so out of town and set out a camp close to the trail. Again Bane has elected to sleep in the open rather than the rope trick.
Godsday 18th Coldeven 501
I am tired. I haven’t worked at spellcasting this much since my apprenticeship. We moved up the mountain until we could get to a concealed place to camp from which we could see the entrance to the mine. I turned Az invisible and he went off to scout. I then started to cast clairvoyance to get a look inside the mine, starting a little behind the doors and using the knowledge gained from each spell to direct the next one. On the whole the trick works well and we started to build a picture of the mines interior, and more importantly it’s inhabitants. As the mine fortunately contains humans the place is, at least partially lit. I saw gnoll and human guards and a strange creature. This thing, kept chained in a room directly across from the entrance, looked like a cross between a dog and a porcupine though a little larger. In the image I got from the scrying it appeared to be about the size of a horse.
Decoration inside was unpleasant, consisting mainly of murals of scenes of the destructive side of then four elements. Why does every evil temple we come across seem to use the same decorator?
It was worth noting that they inhabitants do not keep the door barred. Confidence perhaps?
Az returned, was turned invisible again and went off whilst I retreated up the rope trick to rest. I listened to his report when he returned the second time and after I was rested used the information to scry the rooms either side of the entrance and get a better look at the corridor getting a good picture of the layout and occupants.
Az also told us of the contents of the inside of the crater.
The mine is dug into the outer wall of a caldera, the interior of which is flooded with the exception of a central spire. The spire appears unnatural and purple in colour. Leading to the spire are three bridges extending from points in the crater wall (none of which coincide with the location of the mine). Az took a look in windows in two of the buildings set into the wall and spied a Stone giant keeping watch at one and a strange creature with wings and the head of a lion in another.
The conversation returned to how to gain entry to the mine. The two guard posts were going to cause a problem. We eventually settled on a plan that gave us a chance of gaining entry without alerting the rest of the mine and I settled down to rest and learn the appropriate spells.
Watersday 19th Coldeven 501
Once again a well-conceived plan failed in the execution. Another comrade to mourn and more wounds to heal.
We readied ourselves for gaining entrance to the mine. There was little thought of subterfuge, we just are not suited to that as a group, though after today main force seems not to be our forte either. We approached invisibly, a feat that uses a huge proportion of my spell casting ability and reached a point where Krallovar could get to the outer wall of the left hand guardroom. Az was already above the arrowslit looking in at the guard who was looking out through him (I am told this can be quite disconcerting). Rae held a stone on which silence had been cast that conveniently masked the clanking of armour that is the traditional accompaniment to our cautious advance and readied herself to sprint. I saw Krallovar cast a spell and a good sized section of wall vanished. Az poped into sight as he stabbed at the guard, unfortunately missing and I suddenly found myself able to hear again as Rae charged into the room.
A moment after the wall flowed away the room became a melee, Bane faded into existence in the act of loping a gnolls head off and Az continued to stab at targets from near the ceiling. Krallovar appeared trying to hit the guard nearest the hole in the wall but was having little luck.
Then, of course things went wrong.
From my position outside I heard a gnoll shouting. An impressive feat whilst standing in a silenced area. My comrades within were apparently having a bad morning as instead quickly dispatching the gnolls the fight was dragging on. At the end of the room I saw a man start to open the door only to find it slammed shut by an invisible force. At least that much of the plan was working. Deeper within the mine something produced a howl that chilled the blood.
I was forced to duck as a gnoll jumped out through the hole in the wall. Minor problem with invisibility there. If you don’t watch what is going on around you, you end up getting trampled. Krallovar shot at the gnoll. I shoot at the gnoll. The gnoll ran off into the distance.
Now visible I looked back into the room. The gnolls were all dead and Bane had moved through to where Rae, now visible, was causing carnage. A few minute later it was all over.
Worth noting that after the last of the men fell Rae walked back to the middle of the room and dropped the stone with the silence spell on it. Wonderful. At least now we know where it all went wrong.
A small lesson I must remember, viewed with the benefit of exceptional hindsight, is when invisible remain that way until absolutely you are needed. Shooting at the gnoll was a mistake. Hopefully I will remember this after the wounds have finished healing.
At that point Bane decided to check the corridor. He listened and heard someone approaching. A man opened the door and was promptly struck by his worst nightmare, or at least Rae which is close enough. Bane leaps past and stopped, staring down the passage at something. I moved closer as Rae entered the corridor and saw something behind Bane. I stepped through the door just in time to hear the call for our surrender.
Stood at the crossing of the passageways a mere forty feet away the creature I had spotted earlier. It seemed a lot larger in real life, about twice the size I expected. On its back sat an ogre with a greatclub and an attitiude. Behind him stood four archers. Joy.
The sound of a slamming door hinted that Rae had found something nasty. The shout of ‘Undead!’ confirmed it, though was wonderfully free of useful detail. Foes in front and behind I elected to reduce the threat with a well-placed web.
I have the feeling that Bane is less than pleased that I elected to use him as cover as I cast, more so because the act of casting caused the rider to spur his mount into a charge.
Not since our first encounter with the dragon have I been hurt so badly in one attack. I felt jaws close on me a sharp stabs as it’s spines stabbed and slashed at me as it shook me about. A moment later I wiped the blood from my eyes to find that somehow I had completed then spell and the creature was tangled from the shoulders backwards. This was clearly not a good place to be though with then pain from the wounds I was having trouble deciding what to do. Az decided for me and the next thing I felt was a shove that carried me to the wall, thankfully out of range of the creature. A potion eased the pain and allowed me to get a look at our position. The creature was biting an thrashing about and already Bane looked ready to drop, Krallovar had run up beside him and caused a minor distraction. Rae was braced against a door that shook with retreated blows from the other side. I headed towards her and arrived just in time to here her curse, step back and throw an object at the ground.
The appearance of a five foot wide tree (oak I think), directly in front of the door was something of a surprise. It certainly seemed to sort out the problem of holding the door shut though for a moment I thought the ceiling was going to collapse. Over my shoulder I glimpsed Az Tumble under the creatures snapping jaws, come to his feet and drive his spear into the creature’s side. The spear point bit deeply and the creature howled in pain. It was hard to believe how much punishment it was taking. A spray of magic missiles from me and it still stood. Az had clearly hurt it badly and with fury in its eyes it turned on him. Jaws closed on Az’s shoulder and the creature lifted him and shook him. Spines pierced his limbs and chest and when the creature released him he slid, lifeless to the ground. It fell to Bane to get the killing blow as Rae arrived.
The ogre on the creatures back had not been idle during the fight but his efforts had been overshadowed by the ferocity of the mount he rode. Now he leapt from the creature’s back and spat a challenge at Rae. I don’t think Rae even bothered to answer. She simple swung her flail and struck him hard enough to spin him right round. He lurched a step, possible seeking to escape and died with another blow.
No–one considered carrying on in the state we were in and Krallovar lacked any real skill at healing. We left, at some speed. Any pursuit would have been hard pressed to keep up. None of us has said anything but I think that we will be taking Az back to his clan before thinking about the mine again. I intend to even if no one else does.
Until the next installememt....-Lorrin
A mysterious stranger
(8/13/02 6:39 am)
Re: Player Campaign Log (continued)|
Good to see your wizard is still up to keeping his journal of the temple.
Looks like they had a tad more success than average facing the main entrance -- that is just one nasty brawl.
I really like your portrayal of Bethain's. Sounds like the mage did, also.
Finally, who is this new cleric of Wee Jas? It almost sounds like he's a lich or something... Could you give a quick rundown on the current makeup/levels of the party, possibly?
A mysterious stranger
(8/14/02 12:28 am)
Current Makeup of Party|
Okay here goes:
The fixed members are:
Muratis Level 7 Hu Wiz Necromancer (Nrly Loremaster)
Ra Level 7 1/2E Fight6/BlckGrd 1
Bane Level 7 Hu Barbarian
Az has been replaced by a Human Level 7 Cleric (of Vulcanos).
The new cleric of Wee-Jas was an acolyte of the skin, but this player has just told me he is retiring until at least the new year, so he is going to be removed.
A mysterious stranger
(8/15/02 6:07 am)
Player Campaign Log (Long)|
Starday 22nd Coldeven 501
Arrived in Brindinford. Nice to be back. The journey from Rastor to here was at quite a pace and it is nice to be out of the saddle. I think that if Bane does not want it I will have the head of that creature stuffed. It will serve as a good reminder of the lessons learned in the mines. The group was a little subdued after the fight and the loss of another comrade. There even seemed to be the hint of a chink in Rae’s usual callousness. Fortunately a member of Az’s clan lives here and has taken responsibility for the body. He was a good comrade who’s skills and bravery will be missed. As a minor note Krallovar left us during the journey. He didn’t say a lot when he was with us, he said little when he left. I doubt we will notice that he’s gone.
Sunday 23rd Coldeven 501
We had a visitor this morning. A little while after breakfast, whilst Rae, Bane and I were discussing the problems with the mines and gaining entrance a second time, a man in chainmail and priestly robes knocked at the door. He was seeking us out and had followed our trail from Verberbonc. I invited him in (for once pleased that Rae chose to breakfast in full armour) and asked him what he wanted.
He introduced himself as Halgar, a priest of Vulcannis and said that he had interests that may coincide with ours. I personaly had never heard of this deity but their seemed to be a faint recognition from Rae. Halgar told us that he had been tasked with finding out about an organisation he referred to as the Elemental Eye, a group who were using elemental power for evil purposes and that his investigations had lead him, at the suggestion of the Med-Jai clowns in Verberbonc, to us.
We spoke for the bulk of the day, and he seemed to be honest. It was decided that Halgar would join us when we return to the Rastor. I use ed the latter part or the day to Scry the mine and was treated to a view of some of the other denizens of the entrance. I got to watch a group of soldier types being talked to by a male half-elf with a robed figure looking on. I would guess that these were replacements for those we killed. Interesting that the figure in the background was trying to ensure that no part of him could be seen. Our point of entrance was being blocked up by undead labour. Not the best job I have ever seem, in fact far from it. Other than that the only point of real note was the increased level of paranoia evident in the barred door and general nervousness.
Moonday 24th Coldeven 501
Spent the day making preparations for our return to the mine which, in my case, consisted of scribing a scroll with a few useful little spells. When I had finished I found that the other members of the group had procured a wagon and stocked it with supplies, our cover for getting into the mine.
Earthday 27th Coldeven 501
We are close to Rastor now, tomorrow we will be in the mine, or possibly dead. I must say I am not looking forward to another visit. I used a trick this evening casting vastly overpowered versions of the darkvision spell on myself and Bane. They should last well into tomorrow and remove one of the little problems that plagues our party when underground. The plan for getting into the mine is a little different for us. Drive up to the front door with Bane disguised, Rae invisible and myself disguised as a mercenary and, with the aid of a potion talk our way in. This really has the potential to go badly wrong.
Freeday 28th Coldeven 501
Incredible, we lived. Even more amazingly we are inside.
Gaining entry to the mine was so easy it was almost comical. Halgar quaffed the potion of glibness that Az had carried walked up to the gate and fed the poor soul inside a quite reasonable story. The half elf was summoned, another brief exchange and the gates opened. I think Halgar was enjoying himself as he then proceeded to persuade the guard to let us bring the wagon in, all the way to the room where the creature had been chained up. We start to unload the wagon, disguising the noise as Rae climbed out of the wagon whilst Halgar nosed around, spouting semi-plausible reasons for everything he was doing that the guard swallowed without fuss. The half elf wandered through, departing after a brief conversation with Halgar.
That potion is an absolute wonder. It is hard to imagine the limits to the applications, certainly in a group within which diplomacy and negotiation have always been a major problem.
Once alone it was decided, quietly to eliminate the people in the barracks under the cover of a silence spell. Typically, mid spell a gnoll sticks his head out of the door to the gnoll barracks/lair and Bane promptly charges, and misses. Rae charges, and misses. I was just beginning to suspect that things were going to go completely to pot when Halgar charges the gnoll shoving him into the room. I took a moment to make sure nothing was going to come out of the other barracks then walked over to the double doors and roped them shut. By the time I was finished there was smoke coming from the gnoll barracks and a scene of silent carnage going on within. With Halgar, Rae and Bane in there with them the gnolls stood little chance. My comrades came out, had a moment to ready themselves for the next room then Rae opened the door and was promptly met by a half dozen arrows. The men inside had made a barricade and were firmly ensconced behind it. It bought them a few extra seconds.
In the midst of this fight the main doors rattled, then rattled again. For once we had a plan to deal with this and I threw a sunrod into the fray in the room.
Halgar came out to see what was going on, correctly surmising that Rae and Bane needed little help with the last of the soldiers. The door rattles again and he promptly shouts though the door something to the effect of saying that the wagon was stuck under the handles. That potion works wonders. If I had not been inside staring at the doors that I had roped shut I would have believed him. A minute later someone shouted back through the door for us to hurry up and was given another believable response, though we heard shouts for someone to fetch ‘Teringet’. Bane and Rae were just finishing up as from beneath the door that shadows moved. An undead Shade entered the room (most commonly referred to as shadow nowdays but I prefer the older term). It looked at Halgar. Halgar looked at it. I just sent a spray of magic missiles into it. Halgar recovered and called on his deity and it slipped back under the door.
Rae and Bane joined us and the hastiest of plans was hatched to take the fight outside.
As this happened I took a moment to cast a spell of hastening upon myself. It is a most curious effect seeing those around you slow down in both actions and speech. There is a slight feeling of light-headedness that is not unpleasant.
Judging by the expression on the face of the half elf, they were not expecting the doors to be kicked open and a wagon, driven by our unfriendly Blackguard, to be charged at them. The well flung coin, upon which Halgar had cast his silence, added to the consternation. The half elf was stood at the junction with the Shade, a couple of gnolls and the robed figure.
In the passage I saw Rae swerve the horses (a feet aided by the horses desire not to run into the Shade) aiming them at a couple of startled gnolls and leap backwards some thirty feet to land in the doorway in front of us. The robed figure cast a spell and I countered poorly and was grateful to see Rae, the spells intended target, shake off whatever effect had struck her. I cast a spell at the priest and missed hopelessly. Bane charged the half elf whilst Rae moved to the area directly in front of the priest and paused, waiting for him to do something. Halgar moved forward casting spells. The priest stepped back and cast another spell on Rae who promptly froze. The bane of our warriors strikes again!
The priests spell casting finally allowed me to get a decent look at him. A lizardman priest, similar to the one we met within the Moathouse and using the strange variant on the holding spell that we have come across before from the Enemy’s priesthood.
The hastening effect I had placed upon myself was wonderful. I found myself able to launch another spray of magic missiles against the Shade destroying it and before the priest could do another thing struck him with a beautifully cast enervation. He seemed to pale and sag as it struck him. The half elf was in trouble, the priest was not looking like a threat to Rae. On the whole things were going well.
The priest legged it round the corner. As the only person not fighting I had to pursue. Again the haste spell allowed me to both match his pace and cast spells at him. There was a nasty moment as I located the missing ballistae by getting shot at but with the sped I was moving they gnolls operating it had little chance of hitting and merely alerted Bane to their location. Not the best of moves on their part.
The priest took a fair bit of punishment before he got far enough away from the group to make pursuit too dangerous. I sealed the tunnel he left down with webbing and returned to the group, passing Halgar on the way.
I must endeavour to remember that Halgar cannot see in the dark.
After that we fell back to mopping up. The loss of Az was seriously felt at this point. His ability to root out hidden objects, unlock chests and determine if there are traps is going to be sorely missed. Still we located some papers and cash and found a room in which then symbol on the wall gave us a very unsubtle hint that the Enemy has significant influence here. Papers in the room consisted of a couple of divine scrolls that Rae wishes destroyed and a letter. I will have to read through the letters after I have slept a little.
At least Bane has entered the Rope trick. Now we just rest and wait over the stump of Rae’s tree. It will be interesting to see what comes to investigate our actions.
After a little sleep I have had time to look through the letters.
It appears that the person in charge of the defence of the Main Gate was called Terrenygit. The first of the letters appears to be praising his efforts and urging him not to ally himself with the temple of earth. This might imply that the elemental temples do not always co-operate. Perhaps we can play on this? It would also seem that the author of this note, who simply signs as ‘High Priest of the Outer Fane’ does not want the temples co-operating. We really need to catch one of these priests alive and get some better information.
The second letter is to a person called Mereclar and from the tone suggests that he is one of the followers of the Enemy. I would hazard a guess that this would be the lizardman who successfully fled from us earlier. The letter mentions the search for a ‘Champion of Elemental Evil’, another thing we need to follow up on. The suggestion that Mereclar should recruit more help to defend the main gate seems to have been a good one. Happily he was a little slow. This letter was signed Naquent of the Inner Fane. This name has cropped up more than once and it would appear that he is someone of note within our opposition.
A mysterious stranger
(8/15/02 6:10 am)
Just as a note about the last couple of sessions. One of my players has retired (been on the cards for while), so the party is back down to four PCs.
I replaced the zombies with a shadow (extra pair of eyes), hence its appearance during the adventure.
The remaining guards have done a runner...(some screams where heard), and so the Main entrance is secure.
A mysterious stranger
(8/15/02 7:25 am)
Re: DMs Notes|
Kudos to the player for a very nice journal, and it sounds like you have the CRM off to a great start. Look forward to reading more.