Sunday, 26 March 2017

ep 45 6-8/5/4713 The Therassic Spire



6/5: Group escape the Hanging Manse's guardians. Drop off Augustille & Rest overnight.
7/5: Group goes to Therassic Spire library with Vargun the Augur, meet librarians, enter dungeon beneath. Claw killed by chain devils, revivified by Jarrick. Group decides to retreat & rest overnight again.

Monday, 20 March 2017

ep 44 6/5/4713 Hanging Balconies of Bis



Overnight at Inn in Tarheel Promenade, hired by both Gadka the dwarf merchant and Vargun the troll augur. Drive off Tirana's gang from Gadka's magic item cart. Go west to Bis district and free Augustille the troll augur from a renegade Ardoc family member.

Quillax Account

Journal [19-March]
We woke at the Wheel Unbroken and went down to breakfast. Jarrick had left before dawn to deal with some Paladin issue.
As we ate, a Dwarf approached the group and enquired if we were adventurers. He introduced himself as Gadkah, a dealer in magical curiosities. He had some troubles with a street gang under Tyrannah (a sorceress related to the issue we are investigating for the Church *). The gang was expected to come harass him between 11am and noon and he wanted help.
While we were talking, our young urchin guide, Gav Nali, brought in a Troll from the Augers. Vargun was from the Troll Organisation of Asylum Stone. Her brother, Augustille, had been kidnapped by Berkanin, a young member of the Ardock family. Berkanin had taken Augustille right from the temple steps and was holding him captive and experimenting on him, studying him. Augustille does not have usual visions by the Auger's standards. His unusual visions are not marketable but still true.
We agree to help both parties with urgency. Moncey is sent with Gadkah in case the gang comes early. Gav volunteers to guide us to the place where rumours said Berkanin was holding Augustille.
We arrived at Bis about 9:30 in the morning to investigate the place in question. Gav points out a balcony about 40' up with no balconies below. We could see two entry ways, a series of pulleys for a wooden lift or an archway.
We left Gav below and chose our ways up. Neril disappeared from sight and ran up the walls. Sepheria took the broom. Claw, Clank and I took the lift. When Sepheria lifted above the balcony, some response was triggered and there was noise above us on the lift and it suddenly plummeted. Claw and Clank both took damage from the fall. My ring of feather fall protected me from that but debris fell from above. I stone shaped the lift pillars to try to deflect the debris. It protected Claw but not Clank.
Up above, Sepheria called for retreat and informed us of the two Giant Plant Monsters that appeared out of the bushes of the garden. Gav informs us that he saw something invisible yank the pins out of the lift causing it to fall.
Deciding that due to the time, we would be better suited to deal with Gadkah's problem with the gang first then come back, we hurried back. By the time we arrived, the gang was already there and trying to menace the Dwarf. The were dressed well and wore leather armour, carrying themselves as if they knew how to fight. I spoke with a woman, Jenna, and managed to scare them into retreating, which was not the expected reaction. Sepheria took the opportunity of them grouping up to hypnotic pattern them and Neril stunned Jenna, the only one to avoid the spell.
Sepheria intimidated them into spilling their secrets. The sorceress could be found at the Council of Truth (once the most powerful faction of Kaer Maga - made of wizards). It was at the SouthSide, close to the cliff face by an old watermill; there would be double doors cast in iron with an Owl, the symbol of the CoT. Supposedly there was a ventilation shaft on the cliff face, with perhaps a 1/2 mile drop (we assume this to be hidden within one of the eyes of the skulls that are carved onto the walls of the city). We stripped them of their armour and their weapons (and one potion of healing) and sent them running with a warning not to bother the dwarf again.
Gadkah gave us a lantern of revealing which makes any creature in the bright light visible. Sepheria was able to trade two wands for gloves of thievery and Keoghtom's ointment, which I hoped to study and work out how to duplicate when we next got some time to rest.
Before we could move on, there was sudden movement and commotion. A little golem made of a giant head and some odd arms (face of Runelord of greed), stole a tomato and ran. I gave chase before I thought it through with Neril and Claw behind me. It dove down a tunnel and I took a terrier form, following it into it's lair of rotten fruit. Before we could come to blows, Sepheria called out in a foreign language and it stilled. She called me back and I retreated to rejoin the others. Sepheria called out more in the other tongue and the little golem listened to her. We find out that these were made as sentinels.
Clank did not like it at all and appeared afraid of it, but Sepheria had it under her control, so we simply kept them apart as we headed back to the Inn.
Leaving the new Golem (now named Capita) to guard our things, we went back to Berkanin's place. Neril, in his invisible form, went up first and lowered down rope. Claw climbed up the rope while Sepheria carried me up on the broom. We had to leave Clank at the bottom as we would need to move fast to avoid the Plant Monsters. We managed to avoid engaging them by the boys taking to the roofs and getting out of sight and Sepheria and I simply flying high above them.
As an aside, rather oddly, there was a gazebo in the garden below us with an arrow sticking out of it.
Neril on the third level, spotted the Troll, badly hurt, strapped to the wall with a well dressed guy sleeping in a chair in the same room with an odd box strapped to his back. This was Berkanin.
Claw's movement across the roofs brought him to the second level of the building. He heard a strange woman's voice, whom we later knew to be the cat woman Kanya.
As we could not see Neril, I called out softly to him and he answered. He then went through the window and attacked Berkanin stunning him. There were two military clockwork soldiers that sprung to life in defence of the creator. Sepheria guided the broom in and attacked the clockwork soldiers with animated objects. I was able to see that they were clearly made by the Ardock family - different and not quite as good as the Golem Works. I could also see that they had some sort of fire runes and they could regenerate from damage.
The cat-women leapt up the stairs from the room below and she tried to attack Neril, missing him in her haste. Claw raged and burst through the door below and charged up the stairs behind her.
Out of nowhere, a clockwork psuedodragon attacked Neril with supercharged Magic Missile from a wand. It looked like the mini-dragon-clockwork was built around the wand.
The clockwork soldiers attacked Neril. As we were outnumbered, I threw up a wall of stone and was able to trap the clockwork soldiers inside, then I guided the broom across the room to Augustille to see what I could do to free him in case we needed to move quickly.
Neril attacked Berkanin and was able to stun him again. He then attacked Kanya the rogue but could not stun her. He retreated back towards me. Sepheria called her blade song and blasted Berkanin with scorching ray, partly to draw the rogue away from Neril, who was looking a little rough. Claw killed Kanya and the clockwork dragon (the wand did not explode thankfully) while Sepheria's animated objects continued to attack the clockwork soldiers behind the wall. I healed Neril somewhat and then turned my attention to the Troll, trying to free him while Sepheria's animated objects continued their barrage on the clockworks; we heard a heavy thump which we assumed meant the objects had defeated one clockwork. A harpy suddenly popped up from downstairs in an eclectic mix of clothes and an amazing hat. Surprised, I commented about the hat and she struck at me. Neril stunned the Harpy and Claw landed the fatal blow.
Certain that we could handle one clockwork, I dropped the wall of stone and threw a fireball at the clockwork. Neril, Sepheria, and Claw all attacked. Then the clockwork soldier self destructed. After Augustille was freed from the torturous device and his insides were back inside of him, we were able to salvage some of their pieces for further study, along with some random keys. At his request, we destroyed the recordings of his torture and the experiments done upon him.
Augustille had a sudden prediction: "The owl will seek but will not find, but Spire of Knowledge pays in kind. In secret kept in secret keep, In forest dark and cavern deep."
We know that the Owl is the Council of Truth and the Spire of Knowledge is the Thorasic Spire Library. We have also heard there is forest called the Dark Forest below Kaer Maga and we assume there is a cavern there.
The keys led us to a GolemBane scarab and invoices by someone called Dakar for Berkanin's experiments. There was also a mirror scrying glass and an eye ** which Neril pried from the archway as we reached the first floor.
* - stolen Sword of Lust.
** - CCTV equivalent
[4975 xp total, 700 in total for Clank]

Sunday, 5 March 2017

ep 43 29/4-5/5/4713 To Kaer Maga - The Asylum Stone #1

Image result for boggard

1 month in Turtleback Ferry & Ilsurian; Sephiria crafts Goggles of Night while Jarrick practices smithing. In Ilsurian the priestess of Abadar tells them that Stone Giants have been seen in the ruins of Sandpoint; the Scarnetti Black Dog mercenaries reputedly fled.
Travel on halfling riverboat to Biston, at night attacked by Marsh Giant & Boggards on the dock, then humiliate some annoying Korvosan royal knights.
Reach the Twisted Door and follow the Halflight Path, defeating an ambush by three Seugathi and their dominated hydra. Reach Kaer Maga, sleep overnight in the city.

NPCs
Wen Histani, Prelate of Abadar in Ilsurian. Seeks return of the Sword of Lust.
Othlo Janke, Halfling Bargemaster of the Lucky Jenny.
Abra Lopati, Duskwarden on the Halflight Path
Gav Nahli, teenage guide, Kaer Maga

Kaer Maga - http://pathfinderwiki.com/wiki/Kaer_Maga

Quillax's Journal 5-march

We received word that the Pathfinders Society was sending a boat to carry us to Kaer Maga but it would not arrive for approximately a month. Jarrick decided to study smithing and was able to secure his journeyman status before we had to leave. While he was doing that, we were able to secure a copy of Sepheria's Googles of Nightvision for a very decent price thanks to her excellent persuasion skills. We gave them to Jarrick to replace his stolen pair.

[In April equivalent] We met with Wen Histani, who reminded us of the task before us and told us of the rumours that the Black Dog mercenaries were driven out by Stone Giants in the ruins of Sandpoint.


We met with our arranged boat, a barge called the Lucky Jenny which ran by way of a magical waterwheel. It was crewed by Halflings and captained by Othlo Janke, who was cheery and talkative, unlike his stand-offish crew. The barge was a bit small for us, particularly Claw, but we were able to settle on desk without disrupting the crew or unbalancing the barge.


A day's travel brought us to Biston (Korvosa border town) located on the shore of Lake Syrantula. Othlo informed us we would moor for the night. Claw headed out immediately for the pub. Jarrick and Sepheria seemed content to lounge on the boat. Neril was nowhere to be seen, so I left Clank with Sepheria and went to keep an eye on Claw, who was working his way through a small barrel of mead.

The publican had rumours to share when prompted for news:
- Bloodsworn Vane and it's evil spirits, to which the Hellknights had been dispatched to investigate
- Rumours of Shoanti activity to which the King Tsadok had stepped up the number of armed patrols. There was some discussion on the King being possibly a half-breed but the publican dismissed that immediately.

Claw spoke to some Trappers just out of Ashwood and was told the following rumours:
- Giants and Ogres heading for Jorgenfist (we know this to be true)
- a riverman reportedly saw a Marsh Giant with a group of frogman (Boggards) at the Southern end of Lake Syrantula, well south of Biston.

Jarrick noticed that the crew of the Lucky Jenny were either freed or escaped indentured servants, which explained their reticence as Korvosans are not known for the tolerance of other species. This was relayed to us upon our return to the barge to sleep after we shared our own news. we were able to get below-deck with some of the crew standing guard on deck.

We were woken when the barge rocked wildly. The Jenny's crew was shouting about monsters climbing and hopping aboard.

Jarrick was the first to make it on deck, and he shouted down to us about a giant dragonfly and spellcaster as he attacked the nearest Boggard. The dragonfly tried to attack Jarrick but missed. Clank was next up on deck and immediately went after one of the Boggard. The halflings on deck escaped to below deck, unharmed.

Sepheria, once on deck, cast Tasha's Hideous Laughter on the Marsh Giant, which had climbed on board. The Giant boarding the barge from the water had been the cause of our rude awakening. The Giant, caught in the spell, fell off the side of the boat laughing and floating in the water chortling.

Over the course of the fight, Clank was hit with Bane. Claw killed the first Boggard and nearly killed another (in the water beside the boat - it escaped badly wounded).. Neril made good use of stun on the spellcaster and another Boggard. Jarrick was targeted by both the dragonfly and several Boggards. Clank killed the dragonfly. Sepheria killed the spellcaster with her magics, I killed another Boggard after Claw wounded it. Neril kept the Boggards stunned, allowing Jarrick to finish off the one beside him and Sepheria to kill the last. All the while the Marsh Giant laughed uncontrollably in the water.

We turned out attention to the Giant, with Claw, Neril, Jarrick, and Clank all striking with weapons and Sepheria with fire. I summoned a vine to pull the Giant aboard the barge so we could attack properly. Jarrick landed the killing blow, with the Giant falling off the side of the barge.


As we investigated the bodies, I noted that the Boggards were all diseased. The spellcaster also had a pathfinder's belt with the rune of Open Road upon it and the name of Yando Kline engraved crudely on the inside of the buckle. We know that he was a pathfinder who had been captured and held prisoner by the Boggards but had managed to escape. We gave it to Clank to hold.


As we were finishing up with our investigations, a small group of armoured men hurried towards us. We called out that the danger had passed. As they approached we could see they were Korvosan knights from the Arabesti house knights. They charged aboard the barge without permission, which Sepheria called them out upon, demanding that they show their manners and ask permission to come aboard of the Captain. Othlo gave it cheerfully when requested, and explained to the Knights what had transpired. Sepheria took up the conversation and explained more clearly to the Knight Captain. Claw offered to fetch the Marsh Giant body from the water and pulled it back aboard when requested. Rather unfortunately, the body rolled onto some Knights, and the Captain uttered a rather unacceptable slur about Claw, regarding leashes which I will not repeat.

I took great offense as did the others and in owlbear form glowered at the Captain for his comment. The Captain, although intimidated, decided to be stupid and attacked us. We dealt with the Knights quickly by simply stunning them with fist or magic - doing little physical damage. I sat upon the Captain to make my point and took his helm from him. We made it very clear that his comment was not acceptable. When he acknowledged that his actions were unacceptable, we let him go - sans helmet - and sent him on his way, chastised for his rudeness. There was some noise from the garrison so Othlo suggested that we head out.

It took five days from leaving Isle Syrian to reach the end of the waterway where we could travel no further by ship. We bid them farewell and headed towards the HalfLight Path with much speed. We were able to reach the gates just before they closed for the night and we were met by DuskWarden Abra Lopati, who would lead us to the city for a small fee. There was also a merchant with his two sons and his cart, who would be making the journey. We were given special crystals which shone like torches and could be used to summon help (the three nearest Duskwardens would be alerted) in the event that anyone got separated from the group. We were also informed that for a period of time we would have to travel silently as possibly when instructed.

The journey was slow but Sepheria had to be nearly forced to keep pace as the caves and walls of the path were covered with ancient languages, runes, and carvings and she could not resist trying to copy them or study them. Jarrick was drafted into making rubbings of anything possible and sketches using the paper and charcoal I carried for this purpose.

We came up to a bricked up archway that was carved with a falling star wreaking havoc on a human populous. This depicted StarFall and the fall of Azlant.

Abra stopped us as he examined the damaged and misaligned bricks, which gave us a small bit of warning before a Hydra burst through the wall. Jarrick could see down the tunnel that there were more odd, tentacled creatures approaching, which I was later able to identify as Seugathi (psychic mindflayer types). Sepheria quickly banished the Hydra to allow us to deal with the Seugathi and she backed off to maintain her concentration. Neril attacked and tried to stun the beasts but was unable to so he quickly retreated around the corner to rethink his strategy. Abra missed with his bow and likewise retreated around the corner.


Claw charged forward to attack and I moved up to use magic but we did not kill any before they were able to attack us psychically. Sepheria and Jarrick were able to shrug off the attacks but Claw and I were not so fortunate and were unable to move. Jarrick moved in to attack and Sepheria threw a fireball, killing two of the three. Neril darted in and was able to stun the last. Abra darted in and attacked with sword while Jarrick laid on hands on Claw. Neril landed the killing blow.

Shaking off the attack, I moved out of the cave to prepare for the Hydra. It took Claw a short while longer but he also regained his senses. After a short discussion, we decided to simply seal up the wall again as we believed the Hydra had been possibly dominated by the others. I cast Wall of Stone and we waited, listening. The Hydra made noises as it ripped apart the bodies of the Seugathi then it grumbled to itself and stomped off away from the wall.


We made it to the concrete bunker at the end of the trail where Abra informed the other wardens of the events and we returned the crystals. In thanks, Abra then gave Sepheria one of the Charm crystals and was able to recommend an urchin guide, Gav Nali.

[4800 xp each, 2400 clank]

Kaer Maga blocks magic, so Jarrick was unable to use locate object. We did find Gav Nali (after being pickpocketed a little) who chased off the other thieves and give us information:
- The Therassic Spire is library mysteriously closed
- Augurs on strike - argument with Ardoch family. Their temple is in Downmarket.
- Ardoch family - This family is known for their sorcery and automatons, as well as being sexist.


Gav eventually leads us to the Wheel Unbroken, an upmarket inn and <>. There are mostly merchants inside, although they have markings of academae ( rumoured to be devil summoners college of korvosa)

We rent two rooms and notice some Priests of Abadar, with whom Sepheria speaks. We later overhear them speaking of us and the missing sword. . There are also priests of Asumedaus in the corner, whom the Abadarians are watching covertly.

Claw, holding the shard of Lust, says that he feels the next shard is below us in the undercity.

[300 xp each for exploration]

Sunday, 26 February 2017

ep 42 22-29/3/4713 End of Kreegs, Lamatar Bayden & Myriana reunited HMM#13



The Pathfinders assault the Kreeghold at dusk, in a tough battle killing Dorella, the Three Hag Sisters, 7 ogre slaves and one last Kreeg, driving off their ogre slaves. The undead frost wight Lamatar Bayden is defeated. A weak later his body is returned to Myriana the undead Nymph. The spirits of the two lovers unite and ascend in the form of light, and the swamplands are restored to their natural state. Thoughts turn to Kaer Maga and the Sihedron shard that lies there...

Sephiria's Account

We decide to raid the Kreeghold as soon as possible after the fight with the patrol so the remaining ogres aren’t aware they have been killed. Using Neril’s Pass Without Trace ability we creep up the slope toward the cave entrance where we see a couple ogres standing guard. Leaving the Grey Maidens behind we circle around over a scree slope to get to the other side of the entrance and ambush the guards. On the way Quillax loses her footing but as we’re roped together Claw is able to arrest her fall.
The ogres are unaware of our approach. I manage to disable one with Tasha’s Uncontrollable Laughter while the other is quickly defeated by the rest of the party who in turn despatch the one I had enspelled. While we wait for the Grey Maidens to catch up with us Neril casts Darkvision in preparation to entering the caves.
The Grey Maidens are ordered to stand guard on the entrance while we enter the caves as stealthily as possible. At the crossroads in the centre of the cave three more ogres are standing guard planning to quickly kill them using the same tactics as worked on the guards outside. During the fight we hear the sound of reinforcements being mustered from somewhere deep within the cave. One of the ogres tries to flee but Quillax blocks its way with a Wall of Stone. We think the room it was trying to reach was the base for the hags and the ogre witch Dorella so hope that the Wall will stop their joining the melee for the time being.
A Kreeg ogre arrives from the direction of the Foundry and engages Claw and Clank. From the other direction the undead Lamatar shoots Sephiria with a fusillade of icy arrows before ducking quickly back into cover. While Clank and Claw continue to wear down the Kreeg, supported by Neril and Quillax, Jarrick hastens after Lamatar having a particular dislike for undead.
Using magical Haste, Jarrick is able to catch up with Lamatar and uses Misty Step to teleport behind him to block his further escape. Calling on the power of Iomedae he smites the undead who flees back towards the main cavern seriously injured, trying to achieve sufficient range to use his bow but Jarrick pursues him. Catching sight of Lamatar I use Misty Step to attack him with my rapier as I’d previously noticed he seemed to be resistant to fire magic. Neril is only moments behind and under our combined onslaught Lamatar falls.
At the same time, the Hags (who have been spying on us) attack Claw with a Phantasmal Killer spell but he is able to shrug off their attack. The ogre reinforcements from the deep caves finally gather behind the injured Kreeg ogre so I take the opportunity to Fireball them as they’re clustered together. I shout a warning of worse to come and they fall back in disarray. The irate Kreeg attacks one with his ogrehook trying to discourage the retreat but as it was so badly injured from the Fireball, he kills it instead. The remaining ogres run for cover.
The Hags then try to attack me with the Phantasmal Killer but I resist it aided by a Ring of Spell Turning. Quillax drops the Wall of Stone and we take the battle to the Hags and Dorella who had been trapped in the cave beyond. Quillax Confuses Dorella while Neril teleports into the cave and manages to tip over the cauldron that the Hags had been using to focus their magic. The Hags retaliate using Cone of Cold which proves far more effective than the Phantasmal Killer.
In a moment of clarity, Dorella Lightning Bolts Quillax, Jarrick and Claw while Neril is able to stun two of the Hags despite being serious injured after the Cone of Cold spells. The remaining melee is messy with the Hags catching Dorella in their Cone of Cold spells while she returns the favour and one of the Hags is likewise caught by “friendly fire”. The hags are much less resilient than the ogres and the two stunned ones are soon defeated.
When I reach the cave I animate the debris on the floor and send a tornado of bone shards to attack Dorella and the remaining Hag. Dorella Shields the first attack but the Hag is killed. Seconds later the bone shards tear into Dorella and she falls. In the cave we find a statuette of Lamashtu that Claw smashes. The magical backlash caused by its destruction injures him but he survives.
We return Lamatar’s corpse to Miriana in the Shimmerglens and break the curse on the place as the spirits of both are finally able to move on the next world. In thanks Miriana blesses Jarrick.
With the threat of the Kreeg ogres lifted from the region and the Shimmerglens returned to the light we make plans to head for Kaer Maga and the next Shard.

Gray Maidens of Fort Rannick

Grey Maiden Charter of Conduct 

In the name of Iomedae the Inheritor, I swear: 
- noble service cheerfully rendered 
- defence of any charge unto death 
- courage and enterprise in obedience to rules 
- respect for all peers and equals 
- honour to all above your station 
- scorn for those who are lowly and ignoble 
- military prowess exercised in service to House Kaddren in defence of Magnimar 
- death to all who oppress the cause 
- death before dishonour 
Let Iomedae strike me down if I should be foresworn. 

All This I Swear.

Numbers end M3 4714
Captain: Orianna
Corporals: 3  hp 45
Troopers: 12 hp 30
Recruit Trainees: 5 hp 15

The Gray Maidens have sent out recruitment notices across the territories of Magnimar and Korvosa.

Sunday, 12 February 2017

ep 41 7-22/3/4713 Revenge of the Pathfinders

Pursued by Longtooth the red dragon down the mountainside, Pathfinders kill him and escape, avoiding stone giant tracking party they make it back to Turtleback Ferry.

Two weeks later in a reprisal raid with the Grey Maidens, in the woods below Hook Mountain they encounter a strong Kreeg hunting party, killing 4 kreeg, 3 ogre mooks, and a hill giant. A captured kreeg gives much information prior to his execution. Apparently the gathering giant armies at Jorgenfist are led by one called Mokmurian, who the ogre believes to be a returned Lord of the Ancient Days...
___________________

Quillax Journal

Journal 12-Feb

We were able to escape from the giants by good luck alone. We managed to group up together and sent Neril ahead to scout ahead to make sure we had a clear run of it.

It turned out instead we should have been looking behind. Despite leaving the air elemental to distract the dragon, it still gave chase and bore down upon us from the sky. As it dropped from the clouds, we had a clear view of a glowing bronze sehedron embedded in it’s chest scales.
�Sepheria kicked off blade song and then cast Fly on Claw. Jarrick cast haste upon himself and Claw floated up about 12 feet towards the dragon. As it seemed to be focused on me, I taunted it and then dropped underground, having still retained my earth elemental form.

The Dragon stayed airborne and breathed fire upon the group.

In response, Sepheria drew her wand of acid arrow and cast at it. Jarrick drew his bow and struck the dragon twice.

As the dragon glided overhead, we could see it had a golden amber ring on one talon and a silver armband. Claw flew up and attacked the dragon, landing a blow. I surfaced for a taunt and threw a rock but failed to strike it before ducking underground again.

The Dragon decided that Claw was a more threatening target and bit and scratched at him. Sepheria blew out a second wand of acid arrow on the dragon while Jarrick continued to strike with his bow, landing two more arrows. Claw, injured, managed to disengage from the dragon, landing on the cliff.

As we were at a disadvantage while it was in the air, I resumed human form and cast grasping vine, pulling the dragon towards the cliff edge so that we might get within range. However, the vine does not hold and the Dragon pulled away and flew over to land behind Sepheria. She quickly cast animate objects on the nearby stones.

Jarrick quickly crossed to Sepheria’s side and attacked the dragon, managing to balance on some very precarious rocks in an awe-inspiring display of balance. He struck with all his power, smiting the dragon but not killing it.

Claw jumped off the cliff and ran up to throw a javelin at the dragon. I tried to cast confusion as I was too far and too injured to engage in melee but the Dragon shrugged it off. It did appear to try to run but Jarrick struck hard and killed it as it turned to fly off.

We very quickly looted the dragon, grabbing teeth, scales, skin for armour and the trinkets it wore. The sehedron in its chest was cracked and smoking, having broken when the dragon died - a very quick look revealed the amulet acted like Mighty Fists amulet but it was now broker. Very conscious that the stone giants might be giving chase, we turned with our quickly gathered loot and ran.

[xp = 2500 each]

While the Stone Giants attempted to track us, we met up with Neril, who cast Pass Without A Trace and we were able to avoid them. We returned to town to rest and heal.

There, I spent some time drying the land and casting Plant Growth to assist the farmers while Sepheria researched her spells from the Giant’s Spell Book with Claw helping translate.

We hear that the Grey Maidens are recruiting and are calling other Grey Maidens to the fort via an encoded message. Sepheria raised a concern that the Maidens may not have completely honourable intentions in that matter and we decide to have them sign a conduct charter, to which they agree.

As we need to head to another area for our next investigations into the Shards and other Grey Maidens groups are known to be there (although a traitorous branch of sisters following Faceless Kade. We agree to offer her followers a chance to defect back to an honourable branch. Any who accept will come to the Fort with the pass phrase “The wolf comes down from the North” so the Maidens know they were send by us.

While we were speaking to the Maidens about the Charter, they expressed concern about the number of entrances into the fort. Although I had shrunk many previously, they wanted several closed off completely. I made the necessary changes in such a way that it would not impact the Shocker Lizards or other wildlife but that the fortress was protected.

We spoke to Orianna and expressed a need for backup as we went to take on the Kreeg once more. Aurianna assigned 2 corporals (Masde and Halanda) and three regular maidens (Eleene, Timandi, and Jora) as well as herself to join us in our raids.

We took the Ferry up to Bitter Hollow and went to pick off another hunting group. We spend a night by the lake and then in the morning, Claw noticed some tracks. Sometime in the night the Kreeg party had walked right past us but had not seen us either. We decided to follow them, despite there being approximately 12 in the party. We catch up and encounter 4 Kreeg, 1 Hill Giant, and 3 orgres.

Sepheria, blade singing, casts fireball. I cast wall of fire, splitting the ogre party. The Grey Maiden corporals charged forward and Claw moved up and prepared himself. Jarrick drew his bow and shot at them from a distance. The rest of the Maidens and Orianna charged forward behind Claw.

The Hill Giant approached the group and the Kreeg move up and engaged with Claw and also threw javelins at Sepheria, which she shielded against.

Clank moved up following the Maidens, ending up at Sepheria’s side. One Ogre move up and attacked Jarrick but the other two ran away.

Sepheria threw a fireball and I called Lightning. The Corporals managed whittle down the health of a Kreeg, which Claw finished off. Jarrick cast Fear on another Kreeg. Orianna moved up but failed to strike any blow on her target. The Hill Giant tried to attack her but she dodged the blows.

The Kreeg were mostly focused on Claw but the Ogres were focused on Jarrick. Sepheria cast animate objects and I called down lightning while the Corporals ganged up on the smallest Kreeg.

Jarrick killed the Ogre he was fighting while Orianna and the maidens target the various Kreeg and the Hill Giant. The Giant struck Orianna, who managed to stay on her feet although another of the Maidens did not when struck by the Kreeg.

In the mist of the fight, Clank managed to strike the mortal blow on the Hill Giant while Sepheria’s animated rocks took out a Kreeg. I continued to call down lightning and the Corporals killed another Kreeg. The final Kreeg surrendered.

I quickly changed form to Giant Eagle and gave chase to the two running ogres with Jarrick and Claw behind me. I killed both Ogres then flew back to the party while Claw and Jarrick checked the bodies for anything of importance.

Orianna intimidated the surrendered Kreeg horribly and he told us there were very few (if possibly no) Kreeg remaining in the stronghold. He did mention there may be some in the mines or in the woods but he hadn’t seen any in days aside from those we just killed. He told us Dorella and the Hags were arguing about leaving now the weapons were done and handed over to the Giants. He continued to tell us that the Old Masters were coming back, like Stone Giant King Mochmurian. These were not regular giants but powerful and smart, servants of the Rune Lords. They were said to be gathering at Jorgenfist, the Stone Giant entrance to Hell where the Stone Giant King resides, which would possibly be found in the Valley of the Black Tower in the Iron Peaks (due North of our location). It overlooks the Mushkall River or one could go up the Storval Stairs? He repeats that Mochmurian - an Old Master - is coming back to being back the old ways.

As there is no further information forthcoming, Orianna kills the Kreeg.

[xp 3000 each; 1500 clank]

ep 40 5-7 (dawn)/3/4713 Stone Giants, Red Dragon



5/3/4713

Journal [5-feb]
Heading up towards the Kreeg Clanhold, we see a huge caravan of ogres in the distance, coming towards the Clanhold.
Over Storval Deep, we can see a Red Dragon, either scouting or just enjoying a flight. If it spots us, it could fly fast enough to reach us in just five minutes.
We decide to proceed anyway and climb up to the hole in the ceiling and send Moncey down to have a quick look. The Stone Giant King and his bodyguard are both inside, dozing, about 100 feet from the hole at the throne area. The Stone Giant king had a spell book and an interesting headpiece so our plan changed a little.
Neril jumps down first and casts Silence on the Stone Giants, which was important not only to our plan but also because Claw landed a bit harder than we would have liked.
Just as we were approaching the Stone Giants, a Kreeg entered the throne room from behind. Sepheria swiftly cast Hypnotic Pattern on him, ensnaring him.
We converged on the Stone Giants and started to attack with Jarrick landing the first strike.
Just as we started, Dorella unstealthed and dispelled the Silence spell for a few moments, which allowed the bodyguard to be awoken.
I took Earth Elemental form and went for behind the throne, surfacing in a gold pile. Neril immediately replaced the Silence spell.
The SG King used Necrotic Blast, which stuck multiple people, including his body guard. Jarrick stuck him and ducked back. Dorella woke up the other Kreeg and tries to run. While most of the group focuses on the giants, Neril ducked out to engage the Dorella, managing to stun her.
Sepheria animated the treasure pile and aimed it at the king.
Jarrick struck the killing blow on the Stone Giant king and then we all turned our attention to the bodyguard, except Neril who was keeping the other Kreeg busy.
Dorella manages to shake off Neril's stun and both Kreeg start to run, so Sepheria drops a fireball on them but they manage to escape.
Claw landed the killing blow on the bodyguard.
We quickly scavenge the spell book, hat and treasure from the giants and manage to escape the room. We retreat back to the nearby lake and have a long rest.
[2420xp each, 0 for clank]

6-7/3/4713

We decide to go back again, despite the fact the caravan would have arrived.
Sepheria and Neril go ahead on the broom (first and fast) to scout the movement.
The Kreeg have been supplying the Stone Giants with armour and weapons to be carried out on the Mammoths - possibly leaving at dawn.
We decided we needed to try to cause an avalanche and stop them. I flew ahead as a bird and met up with Neril who travelled on foot. We each had a short rest while waiting for Sepheria to arrive on the broom. Clank had to be left behind because there was no quick way to move him around and if we had to run, no way to get him out.
Jarrick and Claw were travelling on foot and were to meet up with us as soon as they could.
The Mammoths came out with 12 stone giants. As per the plan, I used Major Image to scare the Mammoths with some illusionary sabre-tooth tigers, and the retreated back inside. Only four giants gave chase to them.
We decided to try to wait until Claw (who had knowledge of the best place to cause an avalanche) had arrived, so we engaged to buy time. Sepheria cast fireball, I threw the air elemental summoning gem I had been carrying around, and then took earth elemental form.
One stone giant made an animal companion summoning call and summoned it's DRAGON companion. (LongTooth).
Realising, we were vastly outnumbered, and taking heavy damage, and nearly losing Sephiera, we ran. I sent the air elemental after the dragon to distract it.
Very luckily, we escaped. We met up with Claw and Jarrick and retreated hastily.
[300 xp for not dying]

Sunday, 29 January 2017

ep 39 to 4/3/4713 Fall of Jaagrath Kreeg

Journal [29-Jan]
We decided to go up to check on the dam to ensure nothing was trying to free Black Maga or flood the town. On the way, we agreed to keep an eye out for any Giant Eagles to repopulate the Fort.
As we were making our way to the dam, we bumped into four Trolls who had the high ground. Given warning by Neril, Sepheria (who was aloft on the broom) cast fireball on them while Jarrick and Claw climbed up the steep hillside to reach them. I cast Call Lightning and sent Clank after the others. Two trolls headed towards Claw and One towards Neril who had ducked around the side of the hill, out of sight. The fourth Troll was a bit slow but also joined in on ganging on up Claw. Sepheria continued with Fireball while Jarrick crested the hill and claimed first kill. He used his shield to bash another down the hill. Claw killed another Troll and Neril killed a third. The last Troll came around the side of the hill towards me but it was struck dead between Sepheria's scorching ray and Claw leaping off the side of the hill to land on it.
[1440xp each]
At the dam, we found it unguarded. Surmising that the four trolls we fought earlier were the ones previously in the dam, we fetched the treasure we hadn't previously claimed (including some pink magical gloves) and headed down to the scorpion construct room. It dropped on Claw and nearly killed him even as Jarrick and Neril fought to free him. Jarrick was able to heal Claw but Sepheria and I were unable to use our magics until Claw broke free. A wall of stone bought us a few moments of breathing room and then a combined Wall of Force and Wall of Fire destroyed it.
[1180xp each]
Sepheria and I examined the remains of the scorpion and worked out how it made poison (a combination of two chemicals that were mixed just before the tail spike). Sepheria worked out how to make a construct and how to manage the sluice gates. She planned to write up a guide for the locals on how to control it. There is an energy read out system that reads "Low" but we are able to work out that there is probably about 3 years of standard operation before the power runs out.
From the dam, we headed out into the woods to the East to look for Eagles. We find a mated pair and they agree to go to the Fort just in time to lay eggs. [Approx 2 March in game]
The Eagles tell us that they saw Ogres hunting near Storval deep, so we gather supplies and water walk out from Skull's Crossing.
We find a track which Jarrick determines is an often used Ogre hunting trail. We create a "plant-hide" in the nearby thick bushes and wait. The next day Ogres come down the trail. There are 5 Kreeg including Jaagarath, who spots Claw.
Sepheria casts banish on Jaagarath, temporarily sending him to another plane of existence while we deal with the others. She tries to intimidate the others but is only a little successful.
Neril hastes Claw and I call lightning, still hidden in the bushes, hitting two ogres. 1 Kreeg attacks Sepheria but misses. Three go after Claw. Jarrick fears the Kreeg going after Sepheria, making him unable to move closer to her. Sepheria casts fireball, catching Claw in the middle. Claw strikes at Haagrath Kreeg, with Neril striking the same. My lightning continues to target ogres. The one Kreeg throws something at Sepheria but misses and Haagrath spots Jarrick in the bushes but his attack misses. The other Kreeg continue to beat on Claw, who was looking rather bloodied. Jarrick heals Claw and Clank finally made it through the bushes to attack. Sepheria claimed first kill with her magics and my lightning claimed the second kill. The feared Kreeg threw a javelin at Sepheria but missed. Another Kreeg aimed at Jarrick but missed. Jarrick targeted him in response. with Clank assisting. Sepheria threw scotching ray on the same and it eventually went down under Claw and Neril's attacks. It was finished by my lightning. The final kreeg was struck repeatedly by the entire group and Jarrick landed the fatal blow.
Once we were prepared and in place, Sepheria allowed Jaagarath to return to this plane. We all struck out fast before he could react but when he did, he targeted Jarrick, who went down under his attack. We continued to hit him with everything until Neril struck him dead. A quick heal to get Jarrick on his feet and we investigated the body and decided to drag the bodies into the undergrowth to hide them.
[3903 xp (total 6529) with clank xp 1954]
We decided to rest and hide in the bushes some more to see if anyone would come looking for the ogres.
(I think that's what we decided in the end, anyway)

Monday, 23 January 2017

ep 38 to 15/2/4713 Winter

Journal (22-Jan)

{in game date = equivalent 19-Dec}

Appropriately dressed for the cold and with plenty of food and the materials for a Resurrection spell, we left Sepheria studying some vital scrolls and started out by Ferry, care of Skull and his mate Bones, up to Bitter Hollow.

As it was nearly dark when we arrived and snowing, a half-orc allowed us to sleep in the back room of the trading post in exchange for some gold.

As we were breakfasting, a party of gnomes from the nearby settlement came in complaining of something odd in the Shimmerglens. We spoke with them and found they were worried about the White-Willow area. We reassured them we were aware and were looking into a possible solution. We also suggested they avoid the area as best they could for now.

After breakfast, we set out along the bank of Lake Coal. Claw and Jarrick spot a pair of ogre tracks and we cautiously following it up towards the mountains. Night fell and we were fairly sure we could find them come morning; unfortunately, when we awoke the winds and snow had erased the trail. We followed Claw, who got us lost, so instead we followed Jarrick, who was able to pick up a trail. We ended up at the base of a steep cliff, but Jarrick was able to climb up and lower a rope for the rest of us.

The little hunting trail led us to a gaping cave mouth belching out black smoke and ringing out with the sound of metal-on-metal from a forge. Just inside the cave mouth were the ribs of some behemoth bracketing the entrance. We could spot at least large kreeg ogres - one patrolling the stone shelf just in front of the cave and two more huddling inside.

After intense discussion that included Neril, who caught up, it was decided that I go in as a small animal form to scout the caves. I darted in at dusk as a little bat.

The Cave mouth, leads into a 60' corridor. At the end of the corridor there is a Rune Giant statue - later determined for certain as a mummy. It appeared to be a high ranking officer of the runelord of greed's army. There is a sehedron medallion around it's neck, which draws my attention. Past that, there are stares which go up. To the right, a small cave with a deep pit used for disposal, to the left more stairs.

At the top of those stairs, a three way choice guarded by a hill giant and three kreeg, two of whom were arguing. To the left, a huge cave filled with forges and a huge number of large ogres. To the middle, a narrower stair case that leads to a larder of dead animals and cauldrons with the three hags the Dryad Mariana warned us about. To the right was a hall with a cave off to the left with a shrine to Lemashtu as indicated by a statue of the mother of monsters (3 eyed jackal head on a pregnant woman's body) and containing a very alert undead, lich-like with icy claws and an icy crown. He was quick on the draw and smart. It was a close shave to get out of there. Following the little hall further down, it lead to a room with a throne, upon which sat a Stone Giant. He was guarded by a body guard and talking to Jaagarth and Dorella. There were multiple alcoves in the room as well as a trough or canyon strip down the middle of the room, which led to a hole in the ceiling leading out to the sky - my escape was unseen.

After I reported the position and number of enemies to the others, we sat and worked on a plan. We decided to steal the medallion as point of priority as they may have been using the medallion to resurrect the mummy. I formed a little stone hut to protect us from the elements, and we rested overnight.

Before dawn, I took an earth elemental form and used earth glide under the ground. With a few periscopes to check my position, I was able to get into the cave unseen, however, I was right in line of sight of a kreeg - if hidden behind the mummy. Eventually, I grabbed the medallion but was spotted. I dragged the medallion back into the cave wall with me and retreated. We all ran (medallion in one of the bags of holding), dropping a few stone walls behind us to slow any pursuit. Neril covered our tracks and we pushed hard overnight to get to Bitter Hollow. We rested there than pushed on back Turtleback Ferry.

We dragged Sepheria from her research and passed along our information. The medallions are know to be used for scrying but also can be used for gentle repose to preserve a body. We had thought that gentle repose had a time limitation but the medallions (perhaps by channeling life force) seemed to be able to preserve a body almost indefinitely. If the medallion hadn't been potentially able to see through the wearer's eyes and speak through the wearer's mouth, the other benefits such as false life would have been tempting. Instead, we destroyed it with Claw's maul. There was some star-metal in the alloy but not enough to bother with, so Neril disposed of the remains (I will not disclose the location in writing)*

Sepheria decided more research was needed before we went against the hags and she was awaiting importance correspondence from her sister, so we left her while we investigated the presence of a werewolf.

We tracked it for 3 days and found it over the corpse of an unlucky hunter. We were able to kill it without much difficulty and upon examining the corpse of the dead woman it became, we were not able to find anything significant. We buried both bodies and returned to town. Sepheria had received a missive from her sister stating the Grey Maidens were on their way. She also reported that her dreams were becoming clearer and she was seeing the great ring city of Kaermaga, which might lead us towards the next shard.

The weather was too awful by this point to attempt any raids on the Kreeg stronghold, so we waited. It was a few weeks before anything else happened but then a ship filled with Grey Maidens under Auriana arrived. We led them to the Fort, which we had tidied up. Many of the Maidens seemed little leery of their new station but Auriana was very pleased, rousing the Maidens with a heartening speech about destiny and purpose.

Auriana bore a letter addressed to us. The letter was from the Church of Abadar from the Cleric Wen Histani. She bade us find her at Isle Cyrian south of Pendaka.

Leaving Sepheria to her studies once more, we went down to the Church and were sword to secrecy and asked to find something important for her.

As it is secret, I will not relate it here, not until we have further information. We returned back to Turtleback to see if Sepheria had discovered anything in our absence.

[* we dropped it in the lake].

{date equivalent = mid-Feb}

------------

Personal Journal / Not currently for Pathfinders

Wen Histani, Cleric of Abadar, informed us that a powerful Enchantress by the name of Tirana had walked right into their vaults, bewitching the guards into simply moving aside, to steal a Thassilian relic known as the Sword of Lust. It was one of seven swords known as the Seven Swords of Sin. The weapon alone is not very powerful but it would be very bad if all the swords were gathered together and there have been quiet rumours that other weapons of the set had gone missing. They had been able to track Tirana to Kaermaga, which is known as an outlaw city. The city itself is some sort of artifact where the city/buildings make up the walls.

Wen Histani provided us with a rough map of the city and explained possible ways to enter, including mentioning the secret paths. She told us of the Dusklight paths which lead from the cliff tot he base of the city. Dusk Warden Rangers would be able to provide an escort. Alternatively, we could potentially approach from over land, or other ways. Wen recommended we go to Sirathu. There is a branch of the church within the city which can provide us with basic support but they are not able to provide us any real assistance as there is no official leader or any real law to speak of within the city.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

ep 37 9-19/12/4712 Winter Sets In

9/12/4712 Party retreats 5 miles then sets camp. Next day they return to Fort Rannick and launch a raid that kills the last 6 mook ogres before retreating to Turtleback Ferry; Jakardros narrowly escaping Jaagrath Kreeg's vengeance. On return to Rannick a couple days later, they find the fort abandoned; Jaagrath Dorella and the last three Kreeg ogres have apparently fallen back to the Hook Mountain clanhold.

M12 4712 Winter sets in, with freezing temperatures and heavy snowfall. The party plan an expedition to Hook Mountain, while Jakardros Sorvak journeys west to Magnimar with news of events and letters for Vimandi Kaddren & Mayor Haldemeer Grobaras - send Oriana's Gray Maidens to garrison Fort Rannick, getting them out of Magnimar (where the Hell Knights are rumoured to be plotting a war crimes case against them for events in Korvosa) and onto a useful role defending the frontier.

1. Quillax Druid 10
2. Sephiria Kaddren Rogue 1/Wizard 9
3. Jarrick Rogue 1/Paladin 9
4. Neril Monk 9
5. Claw Barbarian 8

Journal (15-Jan)
Following our successful skirmish on the Fort, we retreated for a long rest and a planning session, which saw us heading back to the Fort well before dawn. It had stopped snowing but overnight, the snow had settled.
As we were travelling, we spotted tracks in the snow. After examining them, we decided that possibly 6 ogres had attempted to follow us, but they had turned back. We checked around us but found no sign of a possible ambush or scouts hiding, so we followed the tracks back and ended up at the Southern gate of the Fort.
As per our plan, Neril took me up on the broom to the upper level of the Fort where the small door that led out onto the parapet was set. There were no visible sentries. I used stone shape to make the doorway far smaller, so it would be a squeeze for a medium sized creature and impossible for a large one to fit through. There was no way to open the door, so the stone shape caused the door to explode and fly off the hinges. There was an angry bellow from inside the corridor and foot steps approaching but we did not stick around to see the approaching ogre. We hopped onto the broom and zoomed away, dodging a javelin thrown from an arrow slit from the Central keep as a warning bell sounded.
As we retreated to our meeting point, I used my shard to cast Major Image to darken the sky like Call Lightning had been summoned by the front gate, implying that was our planned attack position. We used the illusory clouds to cover our retreat.
Sepheria, upon hearing the bell, sent her Arcane Eye down the "Tunnel of Love" path. The door at the end of the tunnel was sealed so well the eye could not find a gap. As there were no enemies in the tunnel, we hurried through the waterfall and down towards the door. We ran into some of the Shocker Lizards, who thankfully remembered me, and after feeding them our rations (replaceable with GoodBerry if we were desperate), we passed safely by.
The door was somehow barred from the inside, so I stone shaped the walls around the door and it fell towards us, caught by Claw before it could make any noise. There was a large pile of barrels and crates which the Ogres had obviously used to barricade the door. Neril squeezed past into the room beyond and reported it was empty. Everyone but Sepheria and Neril worked on both sides to move the barrels and crates out of the way quickly but quietly so we could get past. Sepheria took the time to use the Arcane Eye to scout further ahead, however, she was once again met by blocked doors. Neril took a quick rest and kept watch on the other side of the door.
As soon as we were able to get into the room, we used a crowbar to push the draught extruder out of the way, but once again, the doors were well sealed.
We managed to open the door and walked up the stairs, at the top, Neril spotted an ogre and was able to surprise him. While the rest of the group moved up to attack, I secured our escape route by using stone shape to narrow the stairway so we would be able to squeeze back through but the ogres would not.
Claw and Neril were in position immediately to attack and did so. Jarrick, Jakardros, and Clank were not and so had to hurry into the hall way. Sepheria cast Mirror Image and I hurried after the others after the stairs were secured.
Claw killed the ogre, Neril tied the handles of a door together with some rope, and everyone else readied themselves for the fight we knew was coming.
Harlock Hookmore Kreeg opened a door and approached, hitting Neril with his hook, damaging the monk heavily. Neril managed to dodge the next strike, seeing another ogre in the room beyond (Dorella, the witch). Two more Kreeg were in the shrine room and they both struck at Claw, damaging him heavily and knocking him down. Jaagrath Kreeg stepped out of that room also, hitting Claw whilst he was down. Dorella moved into view (in the distant room) and threw a lightning bolt, which Sepheria dispelled. Dorella ducked back out of sight.
Four ogres burst out of the room that Neril had sealed with rope. Sepheria cast a hypnotic pattern, which unfortunately also caught Neril as well as the ogres, but not the Kreeg Harlock.
Seeing as we were vastly outnumbered at the moment, I cast Wall of Stone - strongly buttressed against the stone walls as the floors were made of wood - blocking all of the Kreegs from reaching us, so we only had the regular ogres to deal with for the moment. Claw attacked one hypnotised ogre and Jakardros shot that same one while Clank shook Neril awake and got out of the way so Jarrick could Lay Hands On Neril.
We could hear the loud thumping as the Kreegs attacked the wall in the areas where they were trapped behind it.
The one awakened ogre shook the others around him awake then tried to run, but Claw managed to pin him in place. Neril heard at least one more ogre in that room.
Sepheria threw a fireball at the ogres and killed one while I ready myself to recast the Wall of Stone in case the Kreeg burst through. Claw and Neril struck at the same ogre before Neril teleported to double check our retreat while Jakardros kept targeting ogres with his arrows.
As expected, the Kreeg were able to bring down the wall, so I cast the spell again quickly before they were able to strike anyone. Seeing as we were looking at a retreat shortly, I sent Clank down and out of the way so if we had to run, he wouldn't be in the way. We continued to attacked the ogres in the hall. Claw killed one and Jakardros another with Jarrick taking out the final one with his dagger.
We started to retreat but Jaagarath Kreeg managed to knock down Jakardros before he could fully retreat, luckily Sepheria was still within earshot and she doubled back to cast Tasha's Hideous Laughter on the Kreeg, giving Jakardros the opportunity to get through the narrowed stairs.
We returned to the town to rest and restock our supplies. When we approached the Fort again, it felt abandoned. We scouted it carefully and could find no sign of the Ogres.
We discussed what we were going to do. If we were going to follow the Kreeg and try to rescue the Commander's spirit from the witches, we would need to leave almost immediately as the weather was turning colder and high in the mountains would soon become bitterly cold and the witches could make the weather worse. Jakardros wanted to rebuild the Black Arrows and declined to travel with us further.
Rumours reached us that there was trouble brewing for our Grey Maidens - the Hellknights were looking to form a legal case against them - so we decided to request Sepheria's sister to send them out to Fort Rannick where they would be both useful and safe from politics. I spent a week casting stone-shaping spells, repairing the damage to the Fort and shrinking the secret entrances to be too small for Ogres.
[3008xp each]

Sunday, 8 January 2017

ep 36 7-9/12/4712 Raiding Fort Rannick



7/12/4712 Jakardros Sorvak reincarnated as Dragonborn
8/12/4712 Head north, wipe out ogre patrol (1 kreeg & 5 mooks), camp in magic hut south of Fort Rannick.
9/12/4712 Raid Fort Rannick, kill 3 ogre mooks then retreat.

Quillax's Journal (08-Jan game)

We were able to revive Jakardros' spirit into a new body. Had we failed, his spirit would have been lost within a very short time to three hags that were trying to rip his spirit apart. His new Copper Dragonborn body took him some time to get used to, but at least he lived once more.

The weather seemed to get worse with the rain turning to minor hail; were I less optimistic, I would take that as a bad sign.

We decided to be far smarter about our next parry against the Orcs. We headed out towards the Fort to try to ambush a couple of their patrols to thin their ranks.

Neril, Jarrick, and Moncey scouted ahead for us and spotted three normal ogres and one Kreeg across the river. Before they could advance or retreat, two more ogres burst out of the undergrowth beside them and attacked. Neril and Claw, who was not far behind the scout group, engaged immediately whilst the rest of us readied ourselves. Unfortunately, we lost any potential surprise against the group across the water.

Neril attacked the ogre beside him then teleported behind a rock to give himself cover to evaluate the situation. Claw raged and immediately attacked the other ogre. The ogres struck back against them. Neril attacked and killed the ogre attacking him. Sepheria attacked the group of ogres across the water with a fireball before I cast confusion on the same group. Moncey decided it was best to get out of the area and went to hide.

Claw continued to trade blows with his attacker and Jarrick joined the fight. Jakardros moved up to join Sepheria and I in attacking the distant group, using his bow. The Kreeg ogre, confused, attacked one of his party, killing it. Jarrick killed the ogre he was fighting and Clockwork moved up to guard the party.

The confusion continued to work in our favour, keeping the ogres from any meaningful actions. Neril darted across the water to sling some stones and retreated. Another of Sepheria's fireballs took out the last two normal ogres, leaving the Kreeg. I took an Earth Elemental form and burrowed under the river. Claw joined the others in the ranged attacks using his javelins while Jakardros continued to use his bow. Jarrick leaped across the river, while Neril waterwalked across to attack. Sepheria used misty step to cross the water and cast booming blade whilst I came up through the earth to strike the Kreeg while the rest of the group continued their distance attacks. Jarrick landed the killing blow with his dagger.

After a short rest to regroup, we went to recon the Fort. There were lights on the in upper level windows. We spent the night inside Sepheria's Leomund's hut and rested, watching for patrols.

The rain turned to snow overnight.

Sepheria cast Arcane Eye to scout the Fort and was able to find at least 7 ogres, including Kreegs. Neril cast pass without a trace and we split the party after some intense discussions on tactics.

Sepheria and I went to the ridge while the rest went to one of the underground passages. I Called Lightning on the guards and the cook house. Neril used stones and his bow, and all other used bows or javelins. Sepheria threw a fireball and scorching ray, while the rest used their ranged weapons and I guided the lighting.

The others moved forward once the lighting killed the ogres on the parapet or they had jumped and run towards the main building. We managed to kill another ogre in the same manner. One of the Kreeg got inside the building but the other was killed. Another Kreeg tried to get inside but I was able to block the door with a Stone Wall. Claw tried to lift the gate but it was slightly too heavy so he had to wait for Neril to crank it open. Neril was able to kill the ogre.

We had a quick look around and were trying to work out our next plan of attack when ogres surged up on the parapet from above, including the witch and leader, we think. We decided to retreat swiftly and hid in the woods to see what the response of the Ogres would be. We had enough resources for another raid but not to take on the Witch and Leader at the same time.

[1983 xp total, each. None for Clank]

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Hook Mountain Regional Map



Whitewillow is the domain of the nymph Myriana corrupted by her undeath. Gnomes live in the Sanos forest. The main human settlements are Turtleback Ferry, Pendaka and Bitter Hollow. Ashwood is a dangerous forest with scattered human habitation. To the north is Shoanti territory, south of Pendaka the Skull River flows south to the town of Ilsurian on the shores of Lake Syrantula. From there the great Yondabakari river runs west to Magnimar

Sunday, 18 December 2016

ep 35 29/11 to 4/12 4712 AR Ogres Victorious

29/11 Battle in Fort Rannick, Claw killed.
30/11 Survivors reach Turtleback Ferry. That night they sneak back to Fort Rannick and recover the heads of Claw & Jakadros Sorvak.
4/12 Quillax and the Mayor working together Reincarnate Claw in a new fresh body. Will take until 7/12 to have enough materiel to attempt the same with Jakardos.


Sephiria's Account

The Attack on Fort Rannick… continued
As we pause for breath, we hear the chaos outside in the courtyard as the barracks building that Sephiria had earlier fireballed collapses, trapping several ogres inside who are burned to death. There’s no time to rest as there are still two ogres ahead of us trapped by the door closed between them and their comrades in the rest of the fort. One is dissolved by an Acid Arrow from Sephiria while the other is slashed by Claw.
Rather than taking time to recover from the fight, we decide to push forwards, hoping that the ogres of the fort will still be in disarray from our attack. Quillax remains behind with Moncey to safeguard our exit. With a mighty kick Claw demolishes the door with such force that the ogre standing behind it is knocked to the ground. Between Claw’s axe and Neril’s martial arts, that ogre is quickly killed while Sephiria blasts Silas Kreeg, the ogre who had come up behind it. The spell staggers him but it takes a second scorching Ray then Claw’s axe before he too is defeated.
Neril rushes upstairs to get a clearer idea of the layout and spots a large room, apparently a chapel, from which he hears the deep voice of what is surely a large ogre giving orders to a smaller ogre. As we move up to support him it seems our luck has started to change as the ogres start to rally their defences. Within seconds the empty corridor we had been in fills with four ogres and we catch sight of a female ogre witch doctor.
The ogre in the chapel turns out to be Jaagrath, the leader of the ogres at Fort Rannick. The witch is another Kreeg ogre named Dorella. She blasts a lightning bolt down the corridor, heedless of the fact that she seriously injured on of her own soldiers. Vale ducked the worst of it; Neril dodges out of the way entirely; but Kib is almost killed.
Jarrick pushes into the chapel to take the fight to Jaagrath and is soon joined by Vale, Sehiria and then Claw. Sephiria blasts Jaagrath with the Wand of Scorching Ray pushed to its maximum, but the damage that would have obliterated any of us seems barely to faze the ogre chieftain. Outside the other ogres are continuing the fight and we hear the sounds of further reinforcements.
In seconds, with the ogres now fully on the alert, the fight has gone from a successful raid to a potential deathtrap. Neril reads the situation and urges retreat, so Sephiria grabs the person nearest to her – Jarrick – and Dimension Doors the tow of them to the tree line outside the fort. Neril slips into the shadows and evades the reinforcements as he races for the secret entrance to Lucretia’s chamber and the tunnel to the waterfall.
The ogres in the corridor manage to close of Jakadros and kill the archer. Kib’s last act is to attack his friend’s killer and that ogre will wear the scars from the cougar’s final attack. In the chapel Claw and Jaagrath are locked in a bitter death match as with each blow they both inch nearer death. Vale assists where he can but falls when even more ogres rush to their leader’s aid. In the end Jaagrath’s inhuman stamina wins out though he is reeling and near death when he finally manages to land the death blow on Claw.
Outside, tired and disheartened, we rendezvous with Quillax and return to Turtleback Ferry. On the way we hatch a plan to help Claw thinking that the ogre chieftain will likely want to display the head of so formidable an adversary as Claw, and that head is sufficient for Quillax to be able to reincarnate the Shoanti barbarian.
Using some of the gems we had put aside for Revivify spells, we pay the village Mayor to collect the unguents necessary for the spell while we return to Fort Rannick. In the meantime we continue to advise the villagers on constructing defences for the village against an ogre attack. Our plan is to reconnoitre the fort using Sephiria’s Arcane Eye to check if the coast is clear for a teleport. If a distraction is necessary to draw any ogres to the battlements, Quillax is standing by to create a diversion using Call Lightning should Moncey give her the pre-arranged signal to do so.
Not surprisingly the ogres are now on high alert and we spot a patrol of eight ogres led by one of the Kreegs leave the fort but we manage to avoid it. In the end the plan goes off without a hitch as Sephiria and Neril sneak in using Pass without Trace and then, once they’re close enough use dimension door to quickly get in to grab Claw’s skull before dimension dooring back out. It’s an unlooked for bonus that we manage to grab Jakadros’ skull as well and plan to reincarnate him if we can.
Back in Turtleback Ferry Quillax casts the spell, but even as she calls Claw’s spirit back to the body created for him, she senses three foul creatures trying to destroy his spirit. She relates what she sensed to Sephiria who links it to a Varisian story told before the Chelaxian invasion of four fey sisters, one of whom was Miriana (who we met in the Shimmerglens) and three others who were eaten up inside by their vanity. They became three annis hags, known as the Sisters of the Hook.
The stories give their names as Briselda, a hump back with huge talons; Gralthaga, tall, almost skeletal-looking with purple skin; and Larastine, with sagging breats and whose face is a mass of warts and weeping pustules. When each looks at her own reflection she sees inhuman beauty and laughs at the ugliness of her sisters… We think it’s likely that they, and not Lucretia, were the real power behind using the sihedron rune to drain the unsuspecting townsfolk.
Our current plan is to attack the ogres piecemeal, attacking their patrols when they leave the fort before once again risking an attack on the fort.

Sunday, 11 December 2016

ep 34 27-29/11/4712 Attacking Fort Rannick

27/11: Return to Turtleback Ferry after dark, meet with the mayor and the Rangers. Suspicions of Kaven Windstrike
28/11: South to swamps, meet Myriana the undead nymph ex-lover of Captain Lamatar Bayden, & back.
29/11: Go with Rangers to Fort Rannick, attack after dark using caves under the keep to enter the dungeon. Kill Lucrecia and the traitor Kaven Windstrike.



Journal 11-Dec
After resting in Razmus' cave, we started back towards town mid-morning. With the bad terrain and my lack of familiarity with the area, we ended up South West of where we meant to be, but luckily we had air support in the form of Sepheria and the broom and others with better geographical skills. We found the Willow River and followed that down to the lake but it was evening before we reached Turtleback Ferry.
We first spoke to the Mayor/Priest and after informing him of the entire situation with the Ogre-kin, the dam (and the remaining monsters), and the Giant, he in turn informed us about the rumour of underwater tunnels to the Fort; we assured him it Black Maga wasn't able to get through these tunnels as she was far too large to fit into any tunnel small enough to lead into the lake. In response to arranging the power necessary to activate the dam's controls, Jarrick came up with the brilliant solution to the lifeforce issue of using livestock in place of people - something like sheep as they could be carried down the stairs.
After finishing our discussion with the Mayor, we headed over to the Inn and found the Rangers, who were discussing tactics, including the possible employment of 'shocker lizards'. There was some subtle tension amongst the group, particularly towards Kaven, though they acted professionally still. Sepheria gave Jakadros a book on military tactics for the townspeople to implement some protection against any Ogres that may be driven out from the Fort once we attack it. Vale took it upon himself to discuss it with the Mayor as he had skills in this area.
Jakadros mentioned that his Commander had been acting most oddly in the proceeding months before the attack, not as if he had been charmed or replaced but distracted and somewhat neglectful with the defenses. He had been known to go 'walkabout' on long moonlit walks towards the Shimmerglens, which is a fair distance from the Fort. He had referred to it as 'Communing with Nature'. Most thought he had a female companion that he went to visit. Jakadros held out hope that his commander had been on a walkabout and may still be in the Shimmerglens.
Note: the Shimmerglens can be reached by way of WickerWalk, which is a path maintained by the gnomes. This leads to Sanos Trail, which in turn leads to the gnome village. The gnomes trade with a local town, not Turtleback Ferry, which is why they maintain the walk.
When the Rangers retired to bed, we continued to speak on the situation, and we spoke within our group on the possibility of the sehedron tattoo being a scrying or tracking device and the possibility of Kaven being a traitor or a thrall. I knocked on Jakadros' door and asked for admittance to discuss Kaven and the tension regarding him as well as the possibility of him being an enemy. Jakadros relayed that Kaven was conscripted into the Black Arrow Rangers following an incident where he beat a friend of his father's nearly to death.
With his permission, I called Sepheria into the room to discuss the tattoo and Neril stood by in the hall, waiting for us and keeping watch for spies. After some discussion, Jakadros revealed that Kaven had 'twisted' his ankle on the night the Fort had been attacked, keeping them from returning and causing them to be captured by the Ogre-kin. We sent Neril and Moncey to quickly check that Kaven was still in his room with Vale and that he had not slipped out to warn any master he might obey that we planned to go to the Shimmerglens to check for the Commander on the morrow.
Further discussion led to an agreement to keep Kaven with the group as long as his tattoo did not act as a scrying port or a tracking device. Sepheria stated she would subtly check in the morning at breakfast. We left Clank guarding the door and Moncey the window of Kaven's room to ensure that he did not leave without us knowing.
In the morning, Sepheria used her magics to check the tattoo but was not able to get an in-depth response other than knowing it was not active magic and was probably unlikely to be used against us. She was able to find the man we had spoken to before who also still had a tattoo and was able to read his tattoo more thoroughly. She highly recommended to him that he disfigure it to prevent his lifeforce and possibly soul from being pulled from him upon his death. He agreed and went to the blacksmith to do so.
Sepheria offered Kaven the same choice, explaining about the tattoo. He reluctantly agreed. Jarrick went with him to ensure he followed through and offered a healing potion as an excuse.
[650xp]
With the tattoo rendered inert, we then spoke with the Ferry Master, "Skull" (nicknamed such due to his ferry running Skull River) to take us to the Glens by Rowboat with the assistance of his first mate, "Bones".
About two-thirds of a mile from Turtleback Ferry, the rain suddenly stopped, forming an odd wall. This was not outside the realm of nature but it was extremely suspicious. If it was magic, there was no telling if it was the Shimmerglens keeping the rain away or Turtleback being engulfed.
The Shimmerglens forest was sick, poisoned with some darkness. This corruption of nature offended me and compelled me to find the cause. Neril was the first to spot a glowing figure, which turned out not to be a will-o-wisp but rather a distressed pixie, "Yap". He was crying that his mistress was ill and the land could not be saved while she was in distress. Yap informed us his Mistress' name was Miriana, the spirit of the woods, and she was upset because her lover had been stolen. We worked out that her lover was most likely Jakadros' commander.
We managed to get enough detail from Yap to work out that his Mistress was possibly a Dryad or some other forest guardian spirit. With the forest as corrupted as it was, we could only assume that she had also been corrupted. Dryads can be corrupted into a being like a Banshee (ban sidhe). We ensured our magic ear wax was to hand, just in case.
I enacted my Commune with Nature ritual and was able to sense a powerful thing about two miles away, both Fey and Undead. Sepheria sent out her Arcane Eye, scouting the forest in the direction I sensed the power.
She reported tall, dark robed figures in the peripheral vision but whenever she turned the eye, there was nothing there. She also reported about a bleeding tree and how the area was cursed. She came upon a pool of water with no life in or around it. It seemed very wrong to her a moments later she relayed the feeling of a magical/mental attack which she was able to cast off and guide the eye away. She spoke of ghostly, translucent forms dancing around and ghostly animals. She found a mangled body of a dryad, collapsed at the foot of a badly damaged tree; both dryad and tree were missing their limbs. The tree still lived and I knew I could save it and her with a touch of my nature magic, if I had time to prepare the spell and I could get to her.
Sepheria and I took the chance of splitting up from the group to approach Yap's Mistress. We followed him along a different and possibly safer path then the eye took, past ghostly figures and an old sailing ship far from water. He led us not to the Dryad as expected but to the pool of water, where a Nymph stepped out. She told us her lover was taken from her and stolen away by Ogres to Hook Mountain (Kreeg Hold), past the Fort. She begged us to find his remains as she had felt what they had done to him and bring what we could of him back to her. She told us he was undead but his soul was somehow locked away as she had tried to reincarnate him in a new body but his spirit could not come.
Sepheria asks how we would know him and the Nymph tells us he had a sword but she had also given him a beautiful blue flower. We promise to bring back whatever we could find of him so she could find her peace.
We returned to town for the evening.
[550xp]
Having prepared ourselves, we headed out to the Fort with the Rangers. We arrived at dusk, as planned, and could see Ogre guards on the battlements.
As planned, we split the party and all of us but Sepheria and Neril went through the secret tunnel behind the waterfall. We had Moncey so that Sepheria and Neril knew when to start their aerial attack. The tunnel was narrow and it lead into a small cave where we bumped into a pair of Shocker Lizards far earlier than expected but I convinced them not to attack us. I was unable to convince them to assist us as they are timid creatures and feeding them a bribe only made them sleepy.
Instead of the store room we expected, we stepped into some strange boudoir with pillows scattered about and silks draped about the room, and the smell of incense. A red-headed woman stepped out from behind a silk, and we knew her as Lucretia. She mockingly welcomed us and greeted Kaven with a pleased speech about how she never would have been able to take the Fort so easily without the details he had provided.
Upstairs Sepheria prepared to throw a fireball at the building we were told was the most flammable. Neril plinked an ogre on the back of the head trying to start a fight amongst the ogres just before Sepheria threw her spell; the building exploded and buried up to 12 ogres under flaming rubble as they were using the building as some sort of barracks. Neril continued to sling stones, striking Mintak Kreeg.
Meanwhile, Vale prepared to restrain Kaven while we attacked. I changed forms and when I confronted Lucretia, I noticed an intricate sehedron on her chest. As we started our attack on Lucretia, Sepheria and Neril teleported into the hall behind us.
Kaven kicked Vale into a pile of crates and ran into the hall past Neril and Sepheria, who struck at him in retaliation.
Lucretia called out for the ogres and changed shapes into her Lamia form. We could hear them coming down stairs behind us, so Clank blocked the door so we didn't have more enemies before we were ready. She tried to ensnare us using her Lamia charm-magics but only Vale was caught by her spell and he shook it off quickly enough. In response, we struck at her with concerted effort and Kibb ripped out her throat.
Sepheria cast Tasha's Hideous Laughter on Kaven to subdue him and I sent Clank to collect him as we needed Sepheria to help against the approaching Ogres. Jarrick and Claw and I readied ourselves by the door just as a Kreeg ogre burst in. He threw a corpse he was carrying at Jarrick, who dodged it, then tried to hook Jarrick with his weapon. He couldn't fit through the door easily and so stayed in the hall, which worked in our favour.
Vale decided we could handle the ogre and went after Kaven, forcing his way past Clank. Neril checked out the side room to ensure we would have no surprises from that side but it was empty cells and as such he ignored it.
Having seen the ogre hooks in action, I decided to relieve the Ogre of it and wrestled it from his hands. Jakadros pulled back to range attack and Kibb stayed with him as guard. Sepheria launched a barrage of Magic Missile and Claw and Jarrick ducked in, attacked, and darted back out of reach.
Seeing as he could not reach us, the Kreeg ogre turned and ran, shoving past the other ogres on the stairs but tripping over the second.
Neril gave chase. I dropped a flaming sphere in the upstairs doorway to prevent the ogres from escaping or more from getting in (at least without getting burned) then Sepheria dropped a fireball, killing the already injured Kreeg. Claw took out another Ogre leaving two on the top of the stairs and one trying to enter the landing.
Vale had executed Kaven and Clank forlornly brought me the body. Jarrick quickly searched the Lamia's body to see if there was anything useful and those not on the stairs regrouped while those on the stairs continued their attacks.
Claw was attacked by the ogres but was not badly injured.
The ogre trying to enter the room backed out and closed the door leaving two ogres in with us.
[xp for this fight unknown]

Image may contain: one or more people, table and shoes


Monday, 28 November 2016

ep 33 26-27/11/4712 Floodgates opened

In dam chambers. Grazuul the Scrag killed, Scorpion construct evaded in control room. Meet a pit fiend. Thassilonian gate system recharged, pit fiend destroyed. Come out and see water pouring through three open gates, and a sight of Black Magga. Kill ettin in cave at west end of dam. Returning through the Valley of Broken Trees, get into a fight with hill giant Razmus & kill him too. Camp in his cave overnight (from ca 2am-10am).

Quillax's Journal

Journal (27-Nov)
Sepheria had started some reading while we were resting and she couldn't be parted from her studies as she was on the verge on a discovery so she sent us ahead with Moncey. We continued down without her and eventually found the stairs opened into a room about half way down the dam. We judged ourselves to be roughly the level of the giant skulls that decorated the front of the dam.
We paused outside the room as it had a large pool of stagnant, slime coated water. Having previously encountered ooze and such hidden in water, we were cautious, as slime and the nearby pile of skull did not indicate it was a safe room.
Neril threw a copper coin into the water as a test. We watched the water expectantly but nothing happened. Claw then poked at the pool with the end of his staff, disturbing the surface layer long enough to see something move under the water. He was able to jump back and avoid the first lunge of a Troll as it rose partly out of the water. It bore a club studded with adamantium shards.
I recognized it as a large aquatic troll known as a Scrag, which can regenerate itself while in contact with water.
Jarrick stepped forward and attacked but was unable to knock it prone. I threw a spell from the stairs but missed, so I shifted to my animal form and moved into the room.
The Scrag struck at me and left painful injuries even as the water healed it some. Claw raged and struck the troll, followed quickly by Neril and Jarrick. Clockwork was unable to land a blow. I tried to pull it from the water so it could not regenerate but I was not able. The Scrag caught me with its claws again as I tried to retreat to free up some fighting space. With my animal form as damaged as it was, I was forced back to human form but I quickly summoned my form again.
The Scrag attacked Neril even as the water continued to heal its injuries. Claw was able to yank the troll out of the water and Neril then managed to stun him. Clockwork came to my side and stood guard over me. Jarrick maneuvered into a position and attacked. I stepped forward, attacked, and retreated to keep from crowding the others. Neril's stun held for a moment more and Claw, Neril, Jarrick, and I were able to land attacks. The Scrag shook off the stun and struck me again as it tried to retreat into the water. Claw failed to drag it out of the water a second time but Jarrick struck a heavy blow and killed the troll before it could recover. He dragged the Scrag's foot from the water before it could regenerate.
Jarrick pried the adamantium from the maul as we watched the body to ensure it did not return to life.
Once we were certain it was staying dead, I cast water breathing as a ritual and Claw, Neril, and I descended into the filthy water to investigate while Jarrick and Claw watched the body and the doors. There were two tunnels, East and West. Claw went East while Neril went West and I waited in the middle to play backup to whichever might need me. When both returned, we surfaced and spoke. Both East and West tunnels ended at small pools within larger rooms. Both rooms seemed empty at first glance but Neril had been able to locate a hidden door. Jarrick joined us in the water and helped pry it open with his crowbar. Neril swam down the tube which led North (Kraken side). It ended with another door that he examined; the damage indicated that the Scrag entered the dam here and closed the door behind itself. We decided to leave it alone.
We headed East next. There was a control panel set atop a set of stairs on a dais. I looked but it was too complex for me. We assumed the skulls with the jeweled eyes on the control panel represented the skulls on the dam. All the lights were off, so we believed the power was off.
We relayed the situation through Moncey back to Sepheria, who confirmed our assumptions. We turned on three skulls so that when we got the power working, it would open three sluices, not all five which would potentially be a disaster for anything along the river as it would certainly flood.
There was a noise above us and Neril and Claw spotted a skull-covered, scorpion-shaped construct crawling across the ceiling above us. I recognized it as a Skull Ripper. It would be immune to lightning, fire, and so much more as it was neither metal nor alive. Claw attacked, Neril moved in and attacked before he retreated to open the nearest door. Their attacks proved the existence of golem resistance.
The Construct lashed out at Claw and managed to grab him, moving as if to cut off his head. Jarrick tried to free Claw with the crowbar but could not, so he retreated back to open the other door so the barbarian had a quick exit route on either side of the room. I took a constrictor form and tried to bind up the construct so that it could not kill our teammate. I was not able to control it but Claw freed himself and jumped into the water. Neril darted in to attack and draw attention away as he called for us to retreat. I was grabbed by the construct but Jarrick was able to free me with the crowbar. I took owl form and hurried to safety before I summoned animals to distract the construct for Jarrick to escape.
We slammed the doors and waited to see if it would give chase. After a period of silence, we decided it was safe. We headed across the room and pushed open the double doors. There were two chambers in this room. One contained a pile of red dust of sorts; the other a large but weak looking demon/pit-fiend, Avaxial. It told us that if not freed the system would drain the last of its energy.
It tried to bribe us for its freedom, but we were not willing to let it loose on our plane. If we could have banished it, that would have been my choice as it had been trapped there with a second one for centuries powering the dam. After some discussion, we agree that it could not be released but we had no way to dismiss it. As our goal was to fix the dam, we were forced to make use of it to power the dam. I summoned an animal inside the other circle and the dam rumbled into life. The demon was destroyed and I banished my summoned creature as it was in pain. Without anything to power it, the dam stopped but the power was on long enough to activate the sluice gates.
We collected Sepheria as we left the dam and she deduced that two healthy adults would be able to power the dam's mechanisms long enough to change the gates without dying, so there are still options available to the local area.
We peered out over the dam and could see that on one side the water had dropped and on the other, the river had risen but not to dangerous levels. The Kraken popped up momentarily to look at us before it disappeared back into the water.
The only safe route down was the cave system which we bypassed previously. We prepared ourselves to take on the Ettin, with Claw raging and charging in. Jarrick and Neril and Clank all followed while I threw magic from the stairs. The Ettin landed several blows to Claw, but not enough to knock him down. Clank managed to land the fatal blow by cutting the Ettin's femoral artery. Claw beheaded the Ettin, just in case, and Jarrick took the skull necklace it was wearing.
Despite my reservations, we headed back towards town by way of the Valley, avoiding the Fort for the moment, where we ran into the Giant Razmus.
Though we could not understand the Giant-speech, it was quickly apparently that Claw failed at his diplomacy attempt as he bore the Troll head aloft. Neril attacked and retreated a safe distance away while I called down lightning. Jarrick tried to persuade the Giant we meant no harm, but Claw had truly angered him. We were forced to fight and as injured and exhausted as we were, we were ill prepared. Claw was forced to retreat and hide around the corner while Clank attacked. Neril kept his distance and went to the Giant's cave to look for anything to use in our favour. Jarrick was forced into the fight but his heart was not in it as he hoped still to stop the fight and he tried simply to knock the Giant prone.
When the Giant struck Clank hard enough to send sparks up and not long after also struck me, I was quite done. I called Clank to me and I called for a retreat as I prepared to shift and carry him away. Neril and Jarrick were already placed to run and Claw could outdistance the Giant given enough time.
Neril, from his spot outside the Giant's range, struck with some sling-stones and the Giant staggered. The sign that the Giant was so weakened heartened us and we regrouped and struck hard. I lashed out with lightning and claws while the others bore down on the Giant with steel. Jarrick and Claw struck hard but it was Clank who, once again, landed the fatal blow.
We settled into the Giant's cave, despite the smell, under Sepheria's dome of protection for a well deserved (long) rest.

Treasure:
- 1053 gp
- 1240 sp
- velvet pouch containing 6 large pearls worth 100gp each (keep for spells!) and a box with leather inset which we recognize as a phylactery
-- Phylactery of Channeling (positive channeling) needs to be worn on wrist or forehead and any positive energy is channeled ((to Jarrick))
--- channel against undead - 2d8 more damage
--- channel for healing - double the effectiveness
- ivory scroll tube set with jade (worth 300gp) which contains 3 separate spell scrolls (Cone of Cold, Hold Monster, Telekinesis)
- Ring of spell turning - resizes to wearer.
- Earthbreaker mace [+1 maul] 2d6 ((to Claw))

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Claw, Shoanti Goliath Barbarian Background

Ursal Claw-Born Arcus

Born in a small village in the northern mountains, Claw's tribe (Arcus) and the local Great White Bear's (Polar bear's I've heard people call them) co-existed in peace, on the day that his mother waters broke she was attacked by one of the bulls under some sort of malady of the mind. Even though she was about to give birth she attempted to help the beast, as is the way of the tribe. It lashed out and Clawed at her abdomen, expediting the birth as Claw's father fought off the beast the tribal heal pulled pulled his mother into a nearby tent and as the icy howling winds swept around, Claw was born. Given the events of the birth the tribal leader named the child Claw-Born (a fitting name). Years passed, Claw grew up trained by his father and his people to hunt and survive in the harsh environment.
14 years passed...
One day Claw set out, saying that he had located the cave of beast and would return victorious or not at all. The journey was long, but recalling his years of training with his father and the tribe he eventually found the cave and descending down the creature’s lair. After a few hours he heard the sound of heavy footsteps entering the cave…
It was no ordinary bear, over twice the size of even the largest ones back with the tribe this huge beast its shoulder height over 3 meters, this would be a battle to remember. Claw attacked; the battle was brutal but eventually, Claw was able mount the bear back and bring his axe down upon his head. Roaring in pain the creature fell with a thunderous sound. Victorious, Claw cut off front paws of the bear as a trophy and returned home.
Months passed by and the story of Claw and the great bear spread among his people. One morning the tribe leader called Claw to his tent. Claw has now come of age and is preparing for his tribal right of manhood, which will require him to journey to the south to experience what the other lands have to offer before returning home. Returning from his last hunt the day before his journey was to begin, he finds his village destroyed and tracks that do not match a Goliath's heading south…

Sunday, 20 November 2016

ep 32 25-26/11/4712 To the Dam





Quillax's Journal

Journal (20-Nov)
We were just fixing ourselves up when we heard footsteps from the house above. We were wary, expecting either one of the rangers or possibly another ogrekin, and so a little surprised to see a new face.
He introduced himself as "Claw", a Goliath Barbarian who's encampment had been attacked when he had been out hunting. He had tracked the trail back to the Ogrekin's home, and with us slaying the last one, found himself without revenge. We explained our purpose and he agreed it was a worthy cause and as it would allow him to fight such creatures that attacked him camp, he decided to join our group.
With our new companion in tow, we checked the final door of the three. It opened into a storage room, filled with useless junk and another doorway set in the far wall. We searched through the junk anyway – in case some of the Rangers' gear was mixed in – then continued through the door. It opened into a small corridor and led to another door, this one rife with rot and moss, with a puddle under the door. We all agreed that this likely led to the Shambling Mound's room.
Claw charged in first and attacked immediately. I followed behind and squeezed in between the monstrosity and the wall, then shoved it, managing to topple it over.
Sepheria was not able to get a clear line of sight with all of us in the way but Neril darted in and was able to land his attacks. The Shambling Mound struck out at Claw and I but missed us both. Jarrick entered and struck the enemy repeatedly. Claw and I attacked and Sepheria then landed the fatal blow.
There was a door in the far wall, which Claw ripped open, revealing a chest. After checking it for traps, we opened it and found some treasure as well as the Black Arrow Rangers' gear.
We decided the best thing for this cursed land was to destroy the house and barn so that nothing else could live there and after we all evacutated the premises, I called forth a localised storm and blasted the two buildings with lighting, burning them down.
As we prepared to part with the Black Arrow Rangers, Jakadros warned us of the following:
If we travelled too close to Fort Rannick on the way to the dam, we would have to watch out for the Ogres, both scouting parties and those watching from the Fort as the road would be visible.
If we detoured through the Valley of Broken Trees to the West of the Fort, we needed to watch out for Erasmus, a supersized hill giant.
Jakadros told us that if we were able, the better option would be to negotiate with the Giant as some rangers were able to do this successfully.
At our request, they drew us a map of the Fort, including the Eyries of the Eagles, where the Giant Eagles nested. None of the Giant Eagles had been seen since the attack, so it was assumed they were all killed. He also pointed out where a secret passage was placed.
We sent the Black Arrow Rangers and Kibb back to the town with their gear to rest and recouperate and we continued on our original quest to the dam.
We rested overnight in Sepheria's magical hut and when we woke, it was to even heavier rain. A quick ritual of water walk allowed us to step over the growing puddles of standing water, though Sepheria chose to use the broom.
Claw informed us that he spoke Giantish and so we decided to take our chances with the Hill Giant and headed for the Valley.
As we progressed through the Valley, there was a growl to our right and a very large Giant stepped close, growling in his language. Claw conversed with him, then informed us of the Giant's request for payment. We offered the Ogre Hook. Some more conversation and a further demand was made. We offered the head of the King Ogre in the Fort once we killed him. Our offer was accepted and we moved on to the dam.
We reached the end of the Valley (approx 4:30pm) as the sun started to set. Some of the party were able to see Ogres and Trolls fighting on the dam, and much damage to one part of the structure. We decided we needed to move quickly. While we watched, the Trolls drove the Ogres away from the damaged area and then they went into the bastion.
Both groups of monsters seemed unusually organised. After some discussion, we agreed that there were probably 5 ogres and 4 trolls. Jarrick mentioned he had seen the Trolls crawling out of Storval Deep (a body of water) and so they were probably aquatic based Trolls, so water walk was no longer the best option. We decided to go through the trees up the far side of the dam.
Looking at the dam, we could see that there used to be a floodgate system where water was regulated through the eyes of the giant carved skulls on the dam. It appeared that the system had either stopped working or been purposefully damaged and we would need to get it started before the dam simply flooded over. There were also several stakes along the stairway we were climbing that were marked with skulls in a Karzoug/runelord symbol.
Sepheria sent her arcane eye ahead of us through the cave, across the wall, to the bastion. We found an Ettin chewing on a bone in the caves, and a ledge 15 foot in height that we would have to scale if we proceeded that way but little else of interest. The top of the dam had a series of damaged areas and 5 ogres, one of whom was obviously their leader. They were injured still, with one of them having a badly damaged arm. Inside the Bastion, Sepheria scouted out the best she was able, finding the four trolls hiding inside dark, mossy corners in one room, and another more interesting room with a sign written on the door. With some effort, she translated it to "Below dwells Wet Papa Grazoul" or something to that effect.
With a little ingenuity, we were able to get the entirety of the party onto the far side of the dam without being seen by the Ogres. (About 8:30pm). The dark aided our movements. As we landed, an enormous horse-like head, at least 15 feet in size rose out of the water of the Storval Deep then disappeared back under a heartbeat later.
We all agreed that was a Kraken and Black Maga was not just a myth. We also agreed that it was very important we did not fall into the water.
Examining the crumbling damage, I was able to fix the bridge with a large outpouring of magic, shaping the stone back into a proper structure. It would hold against normal wear and tear but not against systematic destruction so we needed to stop the Ogres from doing further damage.
We were able to get over the Bastion before our spells wore off but we had to leave Clank behind, which I do dislike but it was necessary.
From there, we went after the Ogres, who were damaging this side of the bridge but had not done enough to destabilise it. We threw stones and javelins at them as we ran towards them. Sepheria was able to ensnare 3 of the 5 with hypnotic pattern and we systematically killed them one by one. Claw landed the fatal blows on two, Jarrick also claimed two (shoving one off the side of the dam, not the Black Maga side), and Sepheria killed the last with her magics.
We headed towards the Bastion, with the hope of avoiding the Trolls while we looked for the mechanisms and to fetch Clank from the other side of the dam. We opened the "Papa" doors and revealed a long staircase. We started down, pausing to catch our breath part way down.
[2800 xp total, each. None for Clank]