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.

Quillax's Account

Journal [26-March]
(Still in the house of Berkanin)
In the downstairs room, there was a big carpet. We start to roll it up.
The little manikin disappears. We quickly use the lantern of revealing.
-Meanwhile- Jarrick follows our trail and makes it to the base of the cliff-side and finds our rope. He spots the Triffins. He thinks about how to maneuver around them. He was able to evade them.
The little manikin, revealed, attacked Sepheria and latched on to her. I tried to grapple it but failed. It is made out of carved whalebone.
-Meanwhile- Jarrick cast locate object on Sepheria's googles and could hear our scuffle.
Neril attacked the manikin and Claw grappled it and was able to pull it off Sepheria's arm. Sepheria stabs it with her dagger. The construct bites Claw and clamps down on him.
Augustille spoke, caught in a vision :
[ The Abbey of the Glutton Moon / Will flow with blood / The Wind in Tune / To finish that began before / and open wide the doomsday door ]
Note: Windsong Abbey is on the Coast.
We could hear a clockwork booting up behind us and Neril could hear another on the opposite side of us.
-Meanwhile- Jarrick picked the lock of the main door and could see a hallway with an enormous clock and two clockwork soldiers that were headed away from him (towards the rest of the party in the next room). He retreated and climbed off the
Neril struck the manikin. Claw smashed it against the wall twice and was able to break it.
Sepheria cast wall of force to block the two clockwork soldiers behind us. Unfortunately, it trapped the rug, which we had to abandon as we couldn't free it. Claw moved forward to hold the hallway in front of us, blocking the two terracotta clockwork from being able to get into the room. I tried to convince the insensate Augustille to go back upstairs but he would not listen.
-Meanwhile- Jarrick had climbed back down to the ground level and started to cross under the balcony to try to approach from the other side to avoid the Triffins.
Neril ran up the wall and kicked one terracotta clockwork in the head. Claw hit the terracotta in front of him. Sepheria managed to convince Augustille to go upstairs and I followed him. One of the terracotta pushed Claw back.
I cast wall of stone as a bridge to the ground. We sounded the retreat.
Jarrick went to the bottom of the stone bridge that suddenly appeared, knowing it was us.
We all retreated and made it down the slide and then I vanished it so we could not be followed easily.
[1700 xp each]
We returned Augustille to the Augers.
The Troll Augers consulted and they confirmed that the sword is held by Tyrannah to the South. In regards to the Shard, two powerful factions have allied themselves to recover a powerful shard artifact (from undercity). These two allied groups are Council of Truth and Thorassic Spire. Council either reformed or returned. They teamed up to send an expedition after the shard.
Augustille had another vision:
[ The Shattered Star with Seven Shards / For Seven Lords with Seven Swords / The Queen of Blue in distant Skies / Will kindle new the ancient wars / The seas will rise and men will drown / and what was lost shall claim the crown ]
We know that :
- Distant Skies - other world or planes
- Azlanti : lost underwater city
- Emperor Zin, one of the Azlantians, founder of Thessalon, wore a crown of all the shards in a slowly rotating halo.
We made it back to the Inn. We pass two gnomes running with ropes tied to a third gnome who was tied to a kite. Sepheria casts Fly on the gnome. We ask them to tell us if they see anything interesting from that height, especially if there may be deep shafts in the rock to the South.
The next morning, Sepheria empties her bag of holding of books and leaves Capita to guard them. We then head out to the Thorassic Spire with Vargun to introduce us.
The Thorassic Spire librarians are rumoured to worship another deity "the Peacock spirit" in secret - an ancient god of Thessalon tied to Pride.
Vargun pounds on the door until someone finally answers and we convince them to let us in using the Stone Giant's spellbook. Vargun leaves us there. Sepheria converses with the librarian who seems very nervous and convinces them to let us help.
The Librarian leads us down into the lower levels (storerooms) and shows us a stone door that had long been hidden behind a now abandoned tapestry. The librarians put up a crude barricade and were guarding the opening. The tell us they sent four people into the depths a few days ago but they haven't returned.
These four are:
- Monk, female, Harari
- Rogue, male, Petrotus
- Bloatmage, male, Luonim the Vast
- Dark Naga, female, Silasni
The Caulborn told the librarians about the secret door and helped recruit the party that went in. The Caulborn live in Xavorax, which is somewhere below Kaer Maga. They used to work for the RuneLords. They are paid in memories - they read the minds of adventurers after they complete an adventure, or so it is assumed.
They tell us, the door leads to a Chamber of Black Menhir, beyond the River of Memory. There is a standing stone obelisk, to transport adventurers to the heart of the Black Forest where the Shard is.
The Librarians asked us to investigate the missing adventurers in return for a lifetime library pass.
Sepheria writes a note to Abra the DuskWarden that we have found an unauthorized entry point into the undercity and have gone to investigate some missing people. Moncey will wait 24 hours after Sepheria loses mental connection then will deliver the message to him.
The door leads down the hall to another secret door leading to a chamber.
There is a floating pulsing purple blob that speaks in Thessalonian, asking "What is your query?"
Sepheria starts to ask a question but is his with a psychic blast which she is able to resist. She finishes her question: about a location of a collection of books. It provides the answer which she believes to be true. She then asks about the River of Memory. It provides an answer: Proceed through the door ahead, then take the third right door, then left, left again, and finally straight ahead.
Her ring of spell turning bounces the attack back but the answer-blob recovers. Sepheria works out the attack spell is a symbol of death.
Neril opens the door ahead and then opens the first door on the left of the hall - there is a disembodied snake-head floating in a sehedron. He then opens the door opposite (right side of the hall). Woven mesh of spikey chains interwoven on the ceiling. There are cloaks hanging on the wall. Three figures drop down from above: all three female Kyton Chain devils attack.
The snale head (type Couatl) also attacks, speaking in Celestial which Jarrick understands, saying "I'm sorry". Claw engages with the Kyton.
The Kyton attack Claw and do a substantial amount of damage to him and then grapple him. Neril swiftly closes the door to the snakehead to try to keep us from being attacked from behind.
Claw attacks the Kyton again. Sepheria's fireball doesn't work as they are immune to fire. A Kyton kills Claw. I tried a wall of stone to seal off the Kyton but the chains on the ceiling prevent it. Neril dodges in, attacks, then teleports out. Sepheria dimension doors Claw's body out. The Kyton attack Jarrick (in the hall), preventing the door from being closed due to the chains. I used Sunbeam, killing one and blinding the other two. Neril ran in and killed one. Jarrick stepped in and killed the last.
The snakehead shoot a scorching ray at me. I responded by throwing another sunbeam. It speaks and tells us that is can still see us due to true sight. It also tells us that the chamber is a conjuration chamber will empowers conjured spells. Neril tries to break the floor's sehedron but fails.
Down the hall, Jarrick revivifies Claw. Sepheria tries to shatter the inlaid floor. There is a psychic attack against her which she resists. The Couatl head tells us to press a shard against the sehedron. I do this and the shard suddenly feels supercharged and I feel very prideful.
The Couatl, now freed, tells us it's name is Tsikinal and gives us two scales/feathers. We can call it to us with a Planer Ally spell (Conjure Animal will work) and it will come to aid us. He tells us he is going to regenerate his body and also that the RuneLord of Greed is still alive or else his magics would have failed.
We retreat to nurse our wounds and put up a wall of stone to block off the secret door and the blob of psychic librarian. We tell the Librarians we will be back after a long rest.
[200 xp exploration each]
[3900 xp each]

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 Kaer Maga - 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.

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 -

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]