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Bobby
Posted by the GM
The Wounded World
Spawn of Rovagug
Ulunat Festering Ulunat, the Unholy First ca. -3470 AR; possibly -3923 AR A colossal beetle, around whose shed carapace the Osirian capital of Sothis has grown.
Tarrasque The Armageddon Engine -632 AR The most terrible of the Spawn. Sealed in a hidden cavern beneath Avistan.
Volnagur The End-Singer 909 AR A winged beast seen across Garund, Casmaron, and Arcadia.
Chemnosit Great Doom Chemnosit, the Monarch Worm (Year unknown; after Ulunat) Feared throughout the Darklands. Reportedly defeated multiple times, but always returns.
Kothogaz Unyielding Kothogaz, The Dance of Disharmony (Year unknown) A Spawn in Casmaron that reportedly slew a million Vudrani before being defeated by Khiben-Sald, the first majarajah of Vudra.
Xotani Wrath-Blazing Xotani, the Firebleeder (Year unknown) Slain by the Legion of Wands. Its grave lies in Katapesh.

Ulunat
Ulunat was said to be a hulking, three-eyed monstrosity with four wings, ten limbs tipped with blades, and a black mirrored carapace. Its single great horn was said to absorb arcane energy and reflect it back on the caster in the form of horrific, literally heart-stopping terror. Ulunat ravaged Garund in -3729 AR. It destroyed six legions of the Jistka Imperium. Its activities continued until -3470 AR, when it is said that Azghaad, the man who would eventually found Osirion, killed Ulunat by channeling the full power of Nethys. This is untrue: spawn of Rovagug are unkillable, and Ulunat was merely banished to a pocket realm beneath its physical carcass, where it still sleeps. Many cultists have tried to free Ulunat throughout the years; all such attempts have failed and been erased from Osirion's official history so as not to encourage subsequent ones. However, currently there are at least three cults dedicated to freeing this Spawn. These are: the Chime of Doom, run by a pit-born tiefling names Kurdashir the Everflame; the Grey Slayers, a guild of rogues and miscreants run by Clewadyn, a annis-spawned oracle; and the Black Blade, a mercenary company run by Thrask, a half-orc barbarian/fighter.

The Tarrasque
The Tarrasque is a colossal, hunched, relatively simplistic-looking land vertebrate. Its most notable features are a carapace capable of reflecting magic and a huge jaw with sharp teeth capable of swallowing whole villages. Its horns and tail are also deadly weapons in their own right. It is thought to have been created by Rovagug while in the Pit of Gormuz, the Tarrasque is one of the most powerful and destructive creatures known. Those not touched by the Ravager believe that this creature is the current herald of the god of destruction. It is drawn to human settlements, brutally exterminating the populace and hunting down escaping survivors.

The Tarrasque emerged in Casmaron from the Pit of Gormuz in -632 AR. It took three months to destroy most of the nearby nation of Ninshabur and force the elite to hide in magically-shrouded Tabsagal, where they eventually succumbed to famine, disease and suicide. After exterminating Ninshabur, it turned north and surged north towards Iobara and into the lands that are now controlled by the Rho. It fled that land after an encounter with a shaman armed with nothing more than pink powder.

After that, the Tarrasque turned west and rampaged into Avistan, destroying the city of Oppara in the process. It then crossed the Inner Sea, seeking old foes of Rovagug in Garund and brought about the fall of the flying city of Kho, capital of the Shory Empire, causing it to come crashing down in the Barrier Wall mountains in the Mwangi Expanse. It was eventually stopped, apparently once again crossing the Inner Sea, and imprisoned in a cave somewhere in Avistan; the anniversary of its defeat is celebrated as a national holiday in many nations, including Taldor and Osirion (Lamashan 14).

Volnagur
Volnagur, the End-Singer, is one of the Spawn of Rovagug. It arrived after Ulunat, though the date of its arrival is unknown. Volnagur had wings and has been spotted throughout Garund, Casmaron, and Arcadia. There are further reports of Volnagur in the traditions surrounding Sarusan, an island located in a trackless sea south of Tian Xia's Valashmai peninsula. It is possible that this Spawn may make its home there.

Volnagur's first known appearance in 909 AR was at the site of what is now Holy Xatramba, in the eastern jungle of the Mwangi Expanse, southwest of the city of Kibwe. It was defeated there, apparently with the help of the Serpentfolk. If this were its first appearance, it must be the last of the Spawn. It was been defeated above the Zho Mountains (which run through Qadira) in 1540 AR, and in the valleys surrounding Mount Na-Ken, a peak in the Shining Mountains of Osirion, in 2062 AR.

In 4540 AR, a mining colony in Sargava consisting of 8,000 people went out of communication. A later expedition discovered that all had perished in a chaotic internal melée. The recent consensus is that it was Volnagur's work. Prior to 4711 AR, most assumed that Volnagur was dead. I remain unsure.

Chemnosit
Chemnosit, also called Great Doom Chemnosit or the Monarch Worm, is among the four spawn best known on the continent of Avistan. When it arrived is unknown, except that it escaped the Pit of Gormuz after the great beetle Ulunat. After breaking free from its prison, Chemnosit burrowed into the Darklands, where the urdefhan in Orv and certain of the more debased humanoids there worship it. On occasion the drow and duergar of Sekamina have called it up, usually to the ruin of their settlements. Svirfneblin have also witnessed it, but perhaps not (yet) in their own domiciles. The book Way of the End-Name includes a description of the beast, stating that "it rears up like a snake about to strike".

Chemnosit is not known to be deceased.

Kothogaz
Kothogaz is not well known in Avistan or Garund, but surviving parts of the acid-scourged Ezida Scrolls provide a most detailed known description of it: a shell like a horned beetle's: veined wings of broken glass; a torso resembling a humanoid with a slug-like abdomen and moist, chitinous armor; four arms, two tipped in pincers; a drooling maw that forms most of its head; and dozens of eyes arrayed above its mouth.

(Ezida is a city state on the southern coast of the Castrovin Sea on the continent of Casmaron, and is ruled by the followers of a religious figure known as the Namzaruum, an ancient hero-god of Casmaron.)

Only bits and pieces of lore is available about Kothogaz:
    [li]Kothogaz was first spotted near old Ezida, then a city of Ninshabur. Hathga-Tah the Ninshaburite also described Kothogaz as "pus of raw and bursted wounds" in his list of the Spawn of Rovagug.[/li]
    [li]A bit from Kothogaz is blamed for the disfigurement and madness of the gold dragon Trilochan in the Nahari Desert.[/li]
    [li]Kothogaz is said to have scattered three pieces of the Champion of the Gilded Host, a powerful construct, when it trampled across Vudra.[/li]
In the mid-4th century AR, Kothogaz came upon Vudra, then disunited, and wrought much destruction in it. The legendary hero Khiben-Said, whom the current maharajah claims as an ancestor, led the defense of this land. In a battle that tales claim cost a million Vudrani lives, the hero-priests cast it into the ocean and boiled the ocean, weakening it to the point where the creature's heart could be extracted.

The heart was then shattered into "101 pieces", and the largest is said to lie beneath Padiskar on Jamleray. The rest were scattered to the four winds.

Xotani
Wrath-Blazing Xotani, the Firebleeder, haunted northern Garund and its portion of Nar-Voth, the uppermost region of the Darklands. Scholars blame it for the wastes of Katapesh, Nex, and southern Osirion. It did not cross the Inner Sea and appears not to have delved into Sekamina (which lies below Nar-Voth).

Circa 2100 AR, the Legion of Wands-comprised of genie binders from Katapesh, sand mages from Osirion, archmages from Nex, and others from across Garund-formed, and in 2104 AR the Legion trapped Xotani in the Brazen Peaks of Katapesh. After a battle lasting "a day and a night", they defeated it. The Legion of Wands disappeared from all records, apparently disbanding in the defeat of Xotani.

Lesser Spawn
An unnamed creature terrorized the Vudran realm of Ninshabur in -3923 AR. Most scholars believe this to be Ulunat, but records are unclear and undiscerning.

The asymmetrical Slohr, which trampled the Arthfell Forest in 3537 AR

The multi-headed Gray-Stag-Devourer of the Crown of the World and Irrisen

Urtleytlar, the Tempest Queen, a scylla cleric of Rovagug came from deep in the Darklands, perhaps even escaping from Rovagug's cage. The first reference I found of her cites that she swam the Sightless Sea for centuries, raiding drow coastal settlements in Sekamina before emerging into the broken continent of Azlant.

Urtleytlar spent her first millennia on the surface terrorizing the Arcadian eastern coast. After Aroden's death, Urtleytlar felt the ensuing surge of chaos and the call of Rovagug to the east, to the Inner Sea region. She saw the Eye of Abendego as a manifestation of the Rough Beast's destructive power, delights in it, and preaches Rovagug's words of destruction through the ruin she sows.

Urtleytlar has gathered numerous evil aquatic humanoids and sailors, who extend her reach to the Sodden Lands and Shackles. Some say she guides foolish sailors hoping to sail into the storm, providing them temporary safety in exchange for a taste of their souls. A handful of Urtleytlar's boggard slaves offer slaves to her as sacrifices. She makes choice selections among them, leaving the scraps to the boggards. She enjoys their adoration, even though the boggards are not necessary for her plans of conquest. Urtleytlar also counts in her service hundreds of skum in the sunken ruins of Lirgen. They deal with the boggards and humans in the Sodden Lands, provide Urtleytlar with slaves and food, and she strengthens their reach by aiding them in their destructive endeavors.

Urtleytlar uses Megrexti, her charybdis counterpart, as a living weapon, sending it into the middle of fleets and delighting in the ensuing mayhem.

As allies, none of these creatures seem suitable. Though, at least, Urtleytlar will listen to reason even if she can't be bargained with. It would be worthwhile to send an emissary there, though I should expect it to be a one-way trip.

A visit to the isle of Sarusan should also be planned. Especially if the pink powder from the legend of the Tarrasque can be verified and isolated.
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Into the Pit
Dill peeled off his shirt, he stood at the edge of the ring in his leather breeches and bare feet. He inhaled deeply, the smell of sweat, blood, sand, smoke mixed with spilled ale. Intoxicating. The usually laughs, catcalls and insults of “Who let a child into the pit?” and “Your mama’s calling boy,” rained down from the stands. He paid no heed as he oiled up his chest and arms. He shot a furtive glance over his shoulder to the party. They seemed to be enjoying themselves, Valindra sipped from a tankard the length of his leg. He turned back to size up his opponent, “Bruiser.” And then Dill did something he hadn’t done in days, he smiled.

In theory, they are not for mere butchery but a display of courage, skill, and strength for the gods. Though of course, the fighting pits also bring in a large amount of coin from spectators, and those who gamble on the fights. As a result, the games are quite popular with both the rich and poor, and many fighters willingly participate in the games because it is their chance to achieve wealth and glory. Dill isn’t here for any of those reasons.

The combatants wear no armor in the fighting pits as it is blood the crowds have come to see. Usually, fighting pits feature combatant against combatant, man against beasts, or beast against beasts. But there are also pits in which slave children are forced to fight beasts, and "follies" in which children, cripples or old people are placed with fake weapons against wild animals for the mockery of spectators. There are even pits in which slave children are covered in different foods so that patrons may bet on which child a given beast will devour first. Dill had no stomach for any of that.

This is the bullshit world he lived in now. The Undead, plague, monsters, and decades of winter to come. Now you throw man’s inhumanity to man on top of it? No wonder Dill lost all hope.

He wandered and fought for survival at first, enough to win a little coin to afford a meal or warm shelter at night. His emotions became as calloused as his hands and knuckles.

But a peculiar thing happened along the way, he felt a kind of release and satisfaction at inflicting pain on another. In a world where he became desensitized to everything around him, the physical contact of fighting woke him up and made him feel truly alive.

Dill charged across the pit at “Bruiser,” how off-putting his wide grin must have been that fleeting moment before impact.

Losing all hope was freedom.
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Lucas
Posted by the GM
O Mundo de Aedda
Ato III, pt. 1 - Calamidade
A viagem de volta pelo esgoto não foi melhor do que a ida. Exaustos do trajeto, e com mais cinco pessoas que também não estavam nas melhores condições, o grupo seguiu uma marcha lenta em busca da saída mais próxima. Com o mapa em mãos, Ragnar buscou a saída mais próxima, mas o cheiro, os túneis destruídos e a tensão pelo inimigo que fugiu para lugares desconhecidos atrapalhavam sua leitura, aumentando ainda mais o percurso. Nelath, mesmo feliz por reencontrar sua amiga, não tirava os olhos das curvas, esperando inimigos ou armadilhas em todo canto.

Após encontrarem, um local seco e menos fedorento, decidiram parar para comer algo e retomar o fôlego. Conversaram, comeram e vigiaram por uma hora. Quando retomaram a viagem, aconteceu.

O tremores começaram leve, e foram ficando cada vez mais potente à medida que o tempo passava, chegando a um ponto que era impossível ficar de pé. O chão começou a se abrir, e parte do teto, a ceder. Todos tentavam se segurar, porém era inútil. Quando os tremores chegaram a um ponto em que parecia que o mundo ia acabar, Robb, Dremian, Áster, Akin e Olara são engolidos pelo escuro. O buraco fecha e os tremores param.


fin



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Epic!
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Genet Fouts
Posted in Lankhmar
Spiders in the Swamp
South and east of the city is the great salt marsh. It is reached via the marsh gate. Margon makes the peat cutter Taraz “pinky swear” to guide us back to Lankhmar when this is all finished.

Flossin and Margon tie a rope to each other. They fear one of them will fall into quicksand and that this strategy will save them. While marking a bush so he can find the way back to Lankhmar, Jenet rouses several large salt spiders who attack him. Jenet kills one with his rapier. Flossin tosses a pint of oil into the midst off the spiders. Margon lights a torch, runs up to the oil, and is stopped by the rope tied to her and Flossin -hilarity ensues. We eventually kill all the spiders.

We reach the peat cutters camp. The party splits up. Jenet joins some of the peat cutters as they search for game to eat. Flossin, Margon, and Ricky stay in camp with two of the peat cutters. Flossin finds a small crumpled note on the edge of the fire ring. It looks like it was intended to have been burned in the fire.

“Still not time to return to Lankhmar. Food and water will be delivered as scheduled. Dispose of letters after reading -Taraz”

We suspect the missing peat cutters aren’t really missing and that Taraz is in on the scheme.

That night, while we are sleeping, Taraz wakes up some of the peat cutters. Flossin is awake and quietly wakes up Ricky. Jenet and Margon are asleep. Taraz signals something to the peat cutters and runs off into the woods. Flossin follows Taraz into the woods and knocks him out. The peat cutters attack. Flossin threatens to kill Taraz if the peat cutters don’t surrender. Jenet convinces two of the peat cutters to drop their weapons. The rest drop their weapons and we tie them up. Margon eats Taraz’s pinky finger. Taraz tells us he, and the Peat Master Freylug, were frustrated with the low cost of peat and devised to poison some peat to stop black market peat sales in Lankhmar. They blamed the poisoned peat on the wood cutters. They decided to sell black market peat as well. The peat cutters brought us out here to add legitimacy to their schemes. When we became suspicious, Taraz wanted us dead. We decided to give Taraz to the Wood Cutters guild and the hired help to the Slayers guild.
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Epic!
Session 0: And so it begins


“Now what?” Trinique adjusted in her seat and strained to hear what the young magic student was saying. He was called Sparrow, but the rumor was that he was the great grandson of Reslin Kine, the famed adventurer. And as some knew, Kine’s fortune had never been found. It seemed that Sparrow was booking passage on a caravan to Drellin's Ferry. Was this related to the treasure? Perhaps it was just an errand for his masters in The Citadel.

Every time she thought of that name it made her laugh. The Citadel sounds so foreboding. Indeed, the Brindol Academy of Magic Arts was headquartered in a large tower complex near the middle of the city, but it was by no means a citadel. Yes, there were some magical wards around the place but there were also mortal guards and any mortal guard was a weak point in any defense. Of course, while they had not been sufficient to block her from getting inside, they had been more than enough to keep her from gaining any magical training. Even with her father's influence and wealth, she had not been able to make the planets align for her to be admitted as a student.

Yes, he was booking passage. The mage was trying to convince the man to take him all the way to Oakhurst but there was no way the caravan master would agree to that. He was one of the Black Knives men and he would surely be arranging a way to steal the cargo before they hit Drellin's Ferry. Perhaps to rob young Sparrow and leave him for dead too. So, if the mage was going, Trinique would make sure to be on the trip too . . .

*****

A golden apple? Why was she dreaming about a golden apple? That and a death white apple, twirling in torchlight. And those beasts with their pointy ears and feral eyes? There was something to it. Were they the ones who took her from her family? No, that was not it. She touched the scars on her neck. Then why did it terrify her so much? Surely an apple could not grow in darkness whether it was golden or not. But she got the distinct feeling that that apple was in her future and it was not in a place in which she would be comfortable.

This was not the first vision Quinn had had. Ever since she had “returned” she had a jumble of dreams which were surely more than just her brain trying to figure out the day. Sometimes they were premonitions and guided her in the face of danger. Sometimes they led her to new discoveries including her new ability to cast spells. But this golden apple was new. She needed a sage to help her explain.

Quinn splashed her face with water, ran her fingers through her hair since she had no comb, then shouldered her pack. It had been a long time since she left Witchcross. Too many days to count. However, she should be in Brindol City by night time and perhaps she could get an answer about this golden apple.

*****

“Hello little one. How was your day?”

Trinique did not think her sister even knew the possible darkness in her future. If she could not find a way to buy her freedom, Jasmine would definitely become a prostitute or a gangster’s wife if she stayed here much longer. The money Trinique was able to scrape together for extra jobs was enough to keep her sister in the kitchens away from the worst of the crowd but she could tell by the way the rougher men and women looked at her, that it would not be long.

Jasmine, covered in the smell of cooking all day, looked up from the wash basin where she was cleaning dishes. She broke out into a smile at the sight of her sister. “Hey you. What are you doing here?”

“Checking on you. Going to be away for a while. Have to go to Drellin’s Ferry for work.” Trinique came around the side of the wall, grabbed a dish and began drying. Jasmine frowned, “work? What type of work? Is it dangerous?”

“Nah,” said Trinique, drying another dish. “Just a little bit of an armed escort. But the pay may be good enough that we could leave this place behind once and for all.” With that Jasmine smiled but her mind was elsewhere.

The sisters washed and dried in silence for a while then Trinique moved over to Jasmine and brushed hair out of the young one’s eyes. “I will get us out of here soon, Jaz. I promise.” Trinique left the room and went back into the streets.

*****

Quinn did not like this city. It was big and fascinating, but it also stank, felt stifling and was way too noisy. She did find a respite. The garden within the walls of The Citadel was quiet and filled with plants, flowers and trees. She could not exactly ignore the walls that seemed to jail the growth of the wild things, but it was better than nothing. She also found information about the golden apples. Talking to an apprentice who had the misfortunate of being assigned to the entry and public question area on the day she arrived, she discovered that the golden apple was real. The apprentice was named Sparrow and he said that he was on his way to Drellin’s Ferry, near the place known for the golden apple, Oakhurst. He invited her to share his wagon at least that far. He was to meet a priest named Derny who had information about his great grandfather, an adventurer of some sort. Apparently, the old adventurer had hidden away some treasures and Sparrow believed there were things too important to be left to the dead.

As for the golden apple, Sparrow said that legend has it that a goblin tribe from near Oakhurst has turned from raiding to trading with the town (that in and of itself sounds like a tall tale). However, every year, slightly after the summer solstice, these goblins sell a single piece of magical fruit to the highest bidder in Oakhurst. The fruit, apparently an apple of perfect gold hue and shine, heals those who suffer from any disease or other ailment. The townspeople sometimes plant the seeds at the center of each fruit, hoping to engender an enchanted apple tree. When the seeds germinate in their proper season, they produce a twiggy mass of twisted sapling stems. Not too long after the saplings reach 2 feet in height, they are stolen — every time. The townsfolk assume the goblins send out thieves to ensure their monopoly of enchanted fruit. Of course, this must be a myth, but it is the only story that seems to involve a golden apple in this area of the Vale. How could a band of wretched goblins ever possess such a wonder, and how could they steal every sprouting sapling grown from the enchanted fruit’s seed without the townspeople noticing? This is a mystery worth pursuing.

*****

Sparrow was apprehensive about the caravan driver and his crew. Luckily there were other passengers heading his way. There was safety in numbers. And at least he had met Quinn, a traveling Druid, and Trinique, a guard of some sort, before the start of the journey. They were the only passengers with him on the way to Drellin’s Ferry. Of course, Quinn was going beyond, all the way to Oakhurst. But it would be good to have their companionship on his journey.

For now, they had been on the road for several days, stopping in the towns of the Dawn Way and either dropping off or picking up goods. Mostly it seemed just heavy barrels and crates with markings indicating linens, ceramics, weapons and other sundries. Nothing too exiting and hopefully nothing that would attract the attention of ruffians. Today they had left behind the last of the towns before Drellin’s Ferry, Terrelton. The only memorable thing about Terrelton was the smell. In the early summer heat, the smell of the tanneries that lined the way into the town from the east, hung low over the entire place, making being outside difficult. Luckily, they were there just one night. Tomorrow, they should reach the banks of the river and his destination. He hoped that Brother Derny had received his letter and knew he was coming. To think that he was close to finding his great grandfathers tomb and treasure was exciting. Particularly exciting was the thought of bringing the Sryix back to the Citadel. Magical artifacts were too important to be left to the dead and had to be studied and observed and used to better the lives of the living. That is exactly what he would do even though he was not sure exactly what a Sryix was . . .



*****

“We have to pull over and water the horses,” said Goran, the caravan driver. The man hopped down from the first wagon and motioned for everyone else to stay put. He then walked a bit away to the side of the road, making no move towards the barrels of water on the second wagon. Shortly thereafter, a group of armed men came out of the woods. While Sparrow was consumed with reading over the notes from his great grandfather’s old journal, Quinn looked up from her notes long enough to notice a man in leather armor and a crossbow hiding behind a nearby tree. She started to say something but Trinique put a hand on her shoulder and shook her head to indicate they should not do anything quite yet.

One of the armed men, clearly the leader, began a friendly looking conversation with the caravan driver but the words were indiscernible as they were too far away. Goran soon returned to the party though and explained that he needed their help in making one of their deliveries. The men were concerned about receiving their shipment in town due to bandits and decided that they could just have the items they were expecting offloaded in a nearby cave. It would go quicker if the three adventurers would help with the unloading.

The cave was just a short distance away from the trail. It was clear that it was an encampment of some sort and had been for some time. Quinn and Sparrow began helping with the cargo while the man with the crossbow climbed into their place and observed. Trinique made no effort to hide that she recognized the men as Black Knives and spoke to the leader.

“So, what is the plan here?” she asked.

“Well, which one do you like the least? We have to kill at least one of them to make this look good. Perhaps both of them.” He laughed harshly and wiped spittle from his red beard.

“That’s not going to happen” Trinique said calmly. “Seems we are going to have to lose two of your men on this job.” She looked him in the eyes without hesitation.

“Fine, we can just hurt them if they will play along. I will talk to them.” The man walked away from Trinique and entered the cave.

“Hey, you two look like smart people who could use a few kronas. You may have figured this out already but you see, this here is an arrangement. We help unload some of this cargo early, make sure it looks like bandits attacked the caravan then we sell it and the owner gets some insurance money for his loss. Everyone wins. You can win too, 10 krona for the two of you to split. But to make it look real, I am going to have to hurt one of you. Fair?” The man looked at both Quinn and Sparrow expectantly.

“Fifteen” said Sparrow. “Just not in the face. I know how this works. I’ve been through this before.” The mage braced himself for a punch to the gut. When it came it was a bit more painful then he expected but not too bad. Quinn looked very uncomfortable. Between the darkness of the cave and this whole situation, she was starting to hyperventilate and panic.

“Well,” said the man, “that’s not enough. I am going to have to hit you both . . . a few times. You’ll heal.” He grinned and took a step towards the hunched over Sparrow. In a flash, Quinn and Trinique were there. The fighter stabbed the man in the shoulder as he looked on in horror. “Trinique! What are you doing? Your father will never stand for this!”

“I am not my father,” Trinique said as Quinn struck with her staff and pushed the man backwards.

Sparrow scooped up a pebble from the floor of the cave and gripped it tightly while saying something arcane. Light burst into the cave, illuminating it like sunshine and the wizard dropped it to the ground. “Now that is better,” he said. Quinn said nothing but appreciated the darkness’ retreat.

Seeing the other men beginning to enter the cave she raised her hands and pleaded to Obad-Hai. The patch of ground around the cave mouth quickly sprouted into a tangled mass of vines, flowers and shrubbery. The bandits barely escaped being entangled in it.

The bandit leader was alone in the cave with the three adventurers now but underestimated their battle prowess. He quickly succumbed to their blows but not before scoring a hit on Trinique. He was supplemented by bolts from the crossbowman but none of the others dared cross Quinn’s barrier of flowers and brambles. After his death, they were at a stalemate.

“Come out and no one gets hurt any worse than they are. We can work out something,” the bandits outside the cave yelled.

Sparrow cupped his hands around his mouth and they glowed ever so slightly. “Leave here and you will be spared. Stay and be doomed.” His voice came out as an incredible deep and loud bass, echoing in the cavern and shaking the leaves on the trees just outside.

There were a few chuckles from the bandits and two ran off at the direction of the caravan driver. He had shouted something about bringing wood and oil to the cave mouth. The closest bandit growled into the cave saying that the adventurers would soon be crispy unless they surrendered. None of them seemed concerned about Sparrow’s trickery.

Quinn responded by producing a ball of flame in her hand and flinging it at the man. He screamed in agony as his beard disintegrate in a twist of foul-smelling smoke. Hands slapped the fire out but not before dropping him to his knees from the pain.

Quiet settled in again as the bandits awaited the arrival of the fire making materials. The three adventurers stayed out of sight as best as they could but occasionally a crossbow bolt streaked into the cave, letting them know that they were trapped. Quinn and Trinique quickly consulted each other. Perhaps there was a way out after all.

Quinn stepped into the light and held her hands outstretched. With a whoosh of air and tinkling like icicles snapping in the wind, a snowy, icy dagger of pure ice appeared then streaked toward the ruffian. It struck him in the chest then exploded in a shower of jagged crystals, showering both him and the Goran in a storm of deadly ice. Both men were knocked back then fell into the dirt. Their faces were pocked with bloody shards which began to melt and their beards were frosted as if from a blizzard. Their eyes flickered and remained open, staring at the sky above but without any sign of life.

Sparrow again cupped his hands around his mouth and shouted for the men to abandon their siege. A crossbow bolt was returned in response. Still an impasse but the effort to smoke them out would soon be underway.

Trinique looked at Quinn and shouted, “Now!” Instantly the bramble of flowers and vines were gone and Trinique was in a run. She passed by the bodies of the dead and leaped up towards the wagon’s side, vaulting over it and right beside the crossbowman. Her rapier flashed and was at his throat before he could blink. “Drop your weapon,” she said through clenched teeth. He did and got down on both knees, his hands in the air.

Quinn and Sparrow followed quickly, rushing out of the cave with fire bursting from Quinn’s hands and Sparrow’s booming magical voice echoing through the cave and out into the clearing beyond. Fire sparked from the balls of it that Quinn threw, none hitting their marks but certainly adding dramatic effect. The remaining bandits surrendered without further combat. But one, Jarrald Halfgiant, who had been returning with a load of branches, turned and ran. Trinique sent the remaining wagon driver after him but the tall bandit eluded him.

The adventurers searched the dead, finding numerous kronas (gold pieces), soldats (electrum pieces) and talents (silver pieces) as well as a heart shaped bloodstone. The crates and barrels were filled with mundane items which may fetch some krona, but were not worth the trouble of having to fence them by the party itself. Trinique told the remaining bandits to carry on with their theft and insurance scam but add that a rival gang, perhaps the Shadowbanks, had attacked and killed the others. They all swore to Trinique that the true events would be kept secret and there would be no hard feelings.

Once everyone had their stories straight and the dead were buried in the cave, Trinique motioned to the new caravan driver and they continued on their way. She could not help thinking that allowing Jarrald get away would present a problem but also knew that he was a coward and would likely disappear for long enough to allow her to make appropriate arrangements. Either that or she could ensure that he turned up in the Elsir River after a tragic accident.

The rest of the trip was uneventful and before nightfall, the thatched roofs of the village could be seen up ahead and the caravan entered the town of Drellin’s Ferry . . .




Session: Session 0 - Friday, Nov 30 2018 from 11:00 PM to 2:30 AM
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