Chornalth Adventures - Liga

Arc 2, Session 22, the Stone Archway
Okay, who brought a cart?

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was still the 14th of Ready’reat, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Adira, weretiger monk,
Akono, human gamba fighter,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Alianna, olven wizard,
Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Firax1s, fraal psion,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Omi, human druid, and
Tahiri, human jedi.

We left our merry band cooling their heels inside a glacier in the Land of Black ice, deciding if they really wanted to tackle the dragon they knew was waiting for them. In the end, greed won out, and they elected to go for it.

Though it was a close call for some members of the party, and some spent most of the battle trying to simply reach the foe, in the end a series of critical hits spelled the end of the dragon.

After the fight, but before the evening dissolved into arguing over treasure, Elzedar and most of the rest of the party set out to investigate a strange ice formation that he had witnessed the dragon addressing before the group launched it’s deadly assault. Frozen inside this block was what appeared to be a green-skinned humanoid figure dressed entirely in furs, holding out a carved wooden box in what appeared to be an offering gesture. After determining that the figure inside the ice was dead, Tahiri cut the box (and the creature’s hands) out of the ice so that the group could inspect the box more closely.

When opened, the box contained a large diamond… and a magic mouth. The words it spoke in draconic are these: “My servant Aximanin brings this gift before you so that you, Illinax, will know that I am as gracious to my friends as I am cruel to mine enemies. I seek your support; aid me in my goal and I swear: not only can I start you upon the Path; but even greater material wealth shall be yours. Fail me, and there is no hole deep enough to hide you from my wrath…”

While several members of the party recognized the words, the race of the bearer was in some doubt; his hands were lightly scaled though he could have easily passed for human…

Shelving the puzzle of the frozen gift bearer, the party returned to Dantredun to identify the items they’d claimed from the hoard…

It is now the 27th of Ready’reat, 599 CY.

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Arc 2, Session 21, the Stone Archway
The Replacement Killers

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 14th of Ready’reat, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Adira, weretiger monk,
Akono, human gamba fighter,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Alianna, olven wizard,
Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Tahiri, human jedi, and reintroducing
Omi, human druid, and finally, introducing
Firax1s, fraal psion.

We left our merry band in mid battle last week, facing two members of the foreign Cult of the Dragon and their assorted followers. Unbeknownst to the party, reinforcements were on the way, in the form of Firax1s, assigned to continue Tal4en’s work with them, and Omi, who, after the destruction of her druid circle, had been searching for the parties responsible and had tracked them as far as Dantredun (much the same way the rest of the group had arrived). Firax1s had met Omi in town, and both agreed to journey together to meet up with the group on the ice.

As Adira finished off the second ambush drake, Alianna poured a potion into Kitiana, reviving her. The barbarians began hacking away at Tahiri’s golden lions, trying to open space for a rush at the core of the group, but the narrow corridors were working against them now that the drakes were out of the picture in the center. The two cultists fell in rapid succession soon after, causing some of the barbarians to attempt to flee, only to plow into Omi and Firax1s as they ran up to join the fight.

The balance tilted until at long last the party held the field, with one barbarian as their captive. When interrogated, he claimed that he and his kinsmen had seen no dragons, but then neither had they been given leave to explore beyond the cultist’s base camp further into the glacier.

Exploring beyond the ambush site soon brought the party into a deep gallery in the ice, with a sheer 30’ climb up to a larger cavern located above them. Elzedar scouted the area but saw nothing, but when Tahiri followed him into the gallery, she was struck by a hurled boulder from an unseen assailant above the lip, As the party flowed into the depression, they soon spotted the frost giant behind his mound of boulders. Tahiri flew into his face, and nearly dies under the punishing blade of the ax he quickly swept up to meet her charge with.

Though most of the party spent most of the battle trying to ascend ropes to get into melee range with the giant, Alianna, Omi, and Firax1s’s spells/powers soon brought him low. A cursory exploration of the upper region allowed them to glimpse what they thought was surely the dragon and his horde, currently sealed behind a wall of ice.

A hurried conclave and unbridled greed soon found the group in agreement; having come this far, they would strike next at the dragon itself, for if they took time to recover the dragon would surely not sit idle. Though low on offensive magics, Kitiana’s spellfire was as yet untapped, and the group’s melee power was unabated (though Kitiana’s wand of cure light wounds was beginning to run dry…)

It is still the 14th of Ready’reat, 599 CY.
XP: still forthcoming.

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Arc 2, Session 20, the Stone Archway
New Friends & Old

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 24th of Patchwall, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Alianna, olven wizard,
Akono, human gamba fighter, and, introducing:
Tahiri, human jedi, and
Adira, weretiger monk.

On their slow trek back to town after last week’s midnight revel, most of the party met two travelers on the road, and after some talk, brought them back to their inn to discuss a more permanent alliance.

Tahiri of Athenia, a newly minted knight of her order, was on the trail of a mysterious figure who had slain her master, and who had escaped the scene in some sort of flying vessel. Rumors and intuition had led her here to the Land of Black Ice in search of retribution.

Adira, daughter of Andrella and Lance, formerly of the Spindrift Isles, was following her own instincts in an effort to lift the curse of lycanthropy that had plagued the females of her family for centuries, as well as to hopefully find a way to force the olves to allow her people to return to their homes.

After a night’s discussion, it was agreed that the two groups would join forces for a time. The next morning the group awakened to the sound of bells, and quickly saw that two large caravans were pulling into town, and that the city was rapidly turning into something of a carnival. Everyone was quick to notice that the local population of half-orcs and other humanoids had also increased significantly.

After a day’s worth of shopping, the group returned to their inn that night only to be quickly dragged away by Alexander, who had caught wind that one of the Tandover clan was in town. A quick search of the nearby whorehouses soon turned him out, but to Alex’s surprise it wasn’t Janus but his younger brother Kaleth. Akono, whose grasp of the situation was somewhat shaky, nearly escalated it into wholesale bloodshed when he attacked Kaleth in his perceived ‘sneaking up on’ his friend.

Once everything was sorted out, Kaleth revealed that he had neither seen nor heard from his brother in several years, and that since war was usually bad for his business, he could see no future in looking him up. On noticing that Kitiana was a foreigner, he mentioned another group of foreigners he’d encountered two weeks past in Blackmoor Town, twins named Deth and Lordik, a pair of certifiable nuts who thought that in the future, dead dragons would come to rule the world…

Kitiana recognized the names of the Gulgathor twins, a mage and priest who were known members of of the Cult of the Dragon in her homeland. While she did not know them directly, her past dealings with the cult had all been decidedly negative, and she quickly convinced the group that they needed to be stopped before they enacted whatever plan they were setting in motion.

Locals who were willing to answer questions told of an old white dragon named Illinax who had been known to lair up on the glacier somewhere in years past, but who had not bothered anyone in nearly four decades. Tahiri retired to her room upstairs to meditate, and was rewarded with a vision of the twins and their retinue of guides and associates descending into a deep crevasse in the ice to a floor that was littered with bones. Clearly there was no time to be lost!

Two weeks later they were making their own descent into that same crack in the ice, already having lived through one night of Adira hunting elk rather than two legged prey. Wanting to finish things before the moon rose again, they made excellent time getting to the bottom and into the vast cave that they found there.

Soon after Elzedar went in to scout he returned, reporting that the barbarians were laying a trap for them. Heedless of that threat, the group pressed on, and what should have been a simple reverse ambush reversed itself again when the barbarian guides were transposed with a pair of ambush drakes…

As we broke for the evening, the main barbarian force was just reaching the cul-de-sac in which the battle was being fought; one drake was down, as was Kitiana, who had been felled from behind by the spells of the mage and the cleric as they sprung their ambush exactly as they had planned…

It is now the 14th of Ready’reat, 599 CY.
XP: forthcoming

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Arc 2, Session 19, the Stone Archway
For the Fallen

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 17th of Patchwall, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Losien, elf rogue/wizard,
Tal4en, fraal psion,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Alianna, olven wizard, and
Akono, human gamba fighter.

The group took advantage of Nikolai’s offer of hospitality for the night, and set out the next morning for Blackmoor. Nikolai gifted Alexander with a small trinket that he promised would give them safe passage through most of the lands of the Wegweir, or Wolf Nomads. True to his word, on the second day the party encountered a large hunting party led by Hothor, son of Dracon, one of Nikolai’s old associates.

Hothor advised the party to avoid both forest and swamp, and to drive their mounts straight through the Neck to Dantredun. He also told them of the Egg of Coot, a mysterious figure that plagued the lands of the north, sowing discord wherever he went. He also told tales of the so-called City of the Gods, an ancient ruin located near the coast, which caught Tal4en’s attention.

Another four days of hard riding brought the party to Dantredun and the Inn of the Laughing Eggplant, where the party ensconced themselves to rest. Working the common room for information revealed that several weeks previous, all of the arcane golems in the city had simply stopped working for a day, then ran off to a strange, long abandoned fortress to the northeast, that looked much like a set of giant gears stacked one atop the other.

Retiring for the evening, Alex and Kitiana were preparing for sleep when they realized that the last cup of wine they’d shared downstairs had been drugged. As Alex sat on the edge of the bed, he fell into a void where the mattress should have been, landing in a cave beneath. As Kitiana screamed to rouse the others, a winged, vaguely demonic figure climbed out of the hole Alex had plummeted into, and attacked.

As the rest of the party joined the fray, Alex suffered several subduing blows from the bugbear guards he met at the bottom of the cave he’d fallen into. Also present were a dire ape and a wizard, whose attention was focused mainly on maintaining the portal that led to his room at the inn. A quick wave of the mage’s distracted hand brought blissful slumber to the swashbuckler, taking him out of the equation for a little while.

A second demon joined the first in the room, and both fought to either subdue, grapple, or bull rush Kitiana into the portal, but were killed before they could do so. Tal4en, Akono, Elzedar and Kitiana jumped into the portal before it closed, trapping Losien and Alianna on the far side. Losien attempted to locate the group with a scroll, but when that failed he simply kissed Alianna, performed a quick sweep of his belongings, and jumped out the window and into the night.

Meanwhile in the cave, Tal4en quickly earned the status of target #1 through liberal use of his psionics to decimate the forced there. In the end, this proved to be a flawed strategy, for the mage slew him while the fighters were busy with the bugbears and the ape.

Finishing off the rest of their opponents, the party trekked several miles back to town, with more questions than answers (as usual)…

It is now the 24th of Patchwall, 599 CY.
XP: 1550

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Arc 2, Session 18, the Stone Archway
These Guys Again?

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 8th of Patchwall, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Losien, elf rouge/wizard,
Tal4en, fraal psion,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Alianna, olven wizard, and
Akono, human gamba fighter.

We left our intrepid band resting up at the Albino Minotaur, planning a trip north to visit Kaverknoll, to interview Lord Nikolai about his knowledge of the Celestial Arch, based on the sketchy deduction that he knew of other gates in the area, having been present when the one between the old palace and Iggwilv’s hidden sanctuary was opened (and sealed) 20+ years in the past.

After nearly a week of travel through the picturesque hills of northern Perrenland, the party reached Kaverknoll, and were quickly intercepted by a pair of horsemen wearing Lord Nikolai’s livery. Upon learning of their business, the horsemen guided the party to Kaverknoll Keep, where Lord Nikolai, Lady Dianetta, and their innumerable children lived.

Though technically a retired priest, Nikolai would have done well in politics, as he talked the night away, retelling the glory days of his youth as an adventurer. He asked questions, too, though the party had never heard nor seen any sign of a huge host of black centaurs. Mabelrode’s dominion over the Bandit Kingdoms they knew off (ancient history to some of the younger members) and they’d had some dealings with the Black Rooks of Tandover.

As the evening wound down, a servant urgently sought Nikolai’s ear as a disturbance rang out in the road approaching the keep. A force of horsemen bearing the Black Rook device soon swept into the courtyard and began massacring Nikolai’s guardsmen. Nikolai asked for the party’s aid as he rushed off to gather his family into the basements beneath the keep, and from their vantage on the second floor they soon managed by use of spells, items, and psi to blast away the horseman’s arcane and divine (Mabbies, again) support. The bulk of the horsemen, however, proved to be locally recruited Wolf Nomads, who proved to be made of tougher material than the clerics and warmages in their group.

While two of the barbarians held the party’s fighters pinned at the main entrance, the leader, a marshal, and the bulk of the barbarians rode around the side of the keep, getting them out from under the party’s barrage of spells and allowing them to enter from the sides, lighting fires as they went. Losien tumbled out into the courtyard, seeking targets for his spells, and was found by the marshal, whose magebane sword nearly crippled him before Losien could kill him with a lightning bolt.

As the party finally felled the barbarians at the door, two more burst in from behind, though they too were much more quickly dispatched. As the battle wound down, the group divided their attentions between fire fighting and locating the source of a child’s crying somewhere in the house. After a few moments, Elzedar located young Gianne and freed her from the arrow that had penetrated the chair she was trying to hide behind, her shoulder, and the wall behind her.

Finally regaining some composure, Nikolai emerged from the cellars and thanked the group profusely, extending his hospitality to them for so long as they might wish, and gifting them with a copy of his journal from his adventuring days…

It is now the 17th of Patchwall, 599 CY.
XP: 3000

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Arc 2, Session 17, the Stone Archway
I wasn't aware I had that sort of competition....

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 6th of Brewfest, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Losien, elf rouge/wizard,
Tal4en, fraal psion,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Alianna, olven wizard, and
Akono, human gamba fighter.

When we ended last week, the party was fending off a large force of hobgoblins, and as the fight resumed, the hobgoblin’s leader, who had remained by the side of the road, broke cover and made a dash directly towards Losien, who had maneuvered himself to the far edges of the battle. The leader, a hill giant, brushed past the core of the fight in his rush to reach Losien, only to be halted in his charge by the advent of a bronze dragon, who chose that moment to do a flying charge/breath attack on the giant.

The dragon’s fear aura scattered most of the rest of the remaining hobgoblins and caravanserai (as well as most of the party), and the dragon’s mere presence scattered the hobgoblins who remained. While picking up the pieces of the battle, Alianna engaged the dragon in conversation, learning nothing much except that the hobgoblins were in league with the so-called Temple of Wounds. While the dragon, whose name was given as Hruuda, had heard of the Celestial Arch, he did not have any useful information concerning it at that time.

Arriving in Schwartzenbruin, they took shelter at the Albino Minotaur Inn, and took stock of their funds. While most of the men in the party went out on various errands, Kitiana and Alianna were approached in the inn by a young uberdritte of the Auszug, or elite militia, of Perrenland, named Hugo. Over a bottle of wine (which he drank most of, as the ladies were merely entertaining his advances), he waxed poetic on the vagaries of life in uniform, the fabled adventuring life, and, on hearing their tale of their passage through the Clatspurs, touched on a bit of history; Iggwilv, Drelzna, and the reactivation and subsequent sealing of a gate from Iggwilv’s mountain fortress into the Voorman’s palace nearly 22 years ago.

Though his tale was clearly anecdotal and fraught with exaggerations, he did mention that one of the adventurers in question, Nikolai, had married a local noblewoman and settled in Kaverknoll, to the north. The ladies thanked Hugo for his stories, lied about their plans for staying in town, and went upstairs to discuss the information gained without interruption.

A few minutes later, Alexander came bursting into their room, furious at what he thought was Kitiana’s infidelity (having been sought out by Akono, who had told him of Hugo’s obvious intentions, and then been told by the innkeeper that Kitiana and ‘a friend’ had repaired upstairs…).

It is now the 8th of Patchwall, 599 CY.

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Arc 2, Session 16, the Stone Archway
Damn, she makes Jabba look slim!

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 24th of Goodmonth, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Losien, elf rouge/wizard,
Tal4en, fraal psion,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Alianna, olven wizard, and
Akono, human gamba fighter.

We left our intrepid band preparing to leave Gul Shaledep without a real destination in mind. While the menfolk argued destinations in the street, Alianna and Kitiana wandered off alone, and were soon accosted by a repulsive crone who looked to have a fair amount of orcish blood. “Yorglok awaits you in the hills!” she intoned, after carefully scrutinizing them both and sniffing them a bit.

Returning to the group, they shared the experience, and a few questions in the local’s ears revealed that Yorglok was the name of a hill giant matriarch nearly 80 years past who had terrorized the region until her sons were all slain in battle and her tribe had turned against her. Thought by most to be dead, they were told she was a story now told to frighten children.

Undismayed by this information, the group rode out of town heading north into the Rakers, hoping to locate some trace of the whoever (or whatever) was waiting for them. The group promptly became lost, and wandered aimlessly for several hours until accosted by a sizable force of orcs. Initially the orcs merely wanted their horses, but when asked about Yorglok, they grudgingly agreed to lead the group, under heavy guard, to her location.

Hours later they were led into a large camp populated chiefly by orcs, and a few very young hill giants. Led into the largest of the buildings there, they met Yorglok, who was both incredibly ancient and massively fat (even for a hill giant). Though her eyesight was clearly poor, she stared at Alianna and Kitiana both, murmuring about them carrying the scent of ‘dragonscale and old magic’.

Both women made obvious displays of respect, and asked her why they’d been told she was waiting for them. In her youth, the matriarch revealed, she’d had a vision that she felt involved these two women, born of different races and widely flung lands of origin. The prophesy, which we are assured rhymed much better in it’s original Giantish, follows:

“In ages lost, once all were one, Our kingdom strongest beneath the sun.
Then men rose up with war machines to make our lifeblood run in streams.
Strangers came bearing silver flame, from the future, past, before magic’s wane.
Arrows eight with hidden faces, broke our Gate to other places.
Where once the lines were clearly drawn, now disorder ruled the Dawn.
Dragons, men, and Giants sundered, In Darkness sealed, so is it wondered?
We feel the loss of our better souls; turn for turn beneath the Poles….”

Though there was clearly more to the prophesy, Yorglok did not choose to share it at this time. Thanking her for her time, the group made a hasty retreat, protected, for the moment, by the matriarch’s proclamation that they were to be allowed to leave in peace.

Tal4en, for his part, felt that the beginning of the prophesy told of an ancient human empire that once united all, but this theory fell apart, coming as it did from a giant. Nobody missed the eight arrows with hidden faces; clearly, the Mabelrodians were involved somehow, and the Gate mentioned might involve the Celestial Arch that Kitiana had seen in her own vision.

However, the group still felt that they were not yet ready to face the Church of Celestian directly. Traveling south to Rel Mord, they did meet with the Celestines to further investigate the capsule which Progillius Oransiir had arrived in, which had been relocated to there after their initial studies in Trigol. They learned that on his last ‘visit’ to the site, he had broken into the temple at night with the assistance of a group of fire hobgoblins, who, previous to that night, had served loyally on the City Watch since the end of the wars. The party quickly put two and two together and realized that they’d already encountered a group of fire hobgoblins with some fairly outlandish devices not so many weeks past…

Checking over the capsule, Tal4en soon came to the opinion that it was perhaps the most advanced clockwork mechanism he’d ever seen, a masterwork item of truly impressive capabilities. Though this didn’t give the group any insight as to who had built it, it did remind them that they’d found a map in the tower the hobgoblins had held that charted a course to the north, not from the north as they had originally surmised….

Deciding that the easiest path north led through Perrenland, the party traveled west through Urnst, crossed the Nyr Dyv, rode through Furyondy, Veluna and Ket, finally arriving at the feet of the Clatspurs nearly destitute. Having been warned that the pass through the Clatspurs as treacherous with bandit activity (fueled by a wizened cleric named Maerdan (the Black) and his lieutenant, Flavius, whose base of operations was the thrice damned resurgent Temple of Wounds located in the mountains), the group decided to accompany a caravan through the pass, seeking protection in numbers while earning a few gold as guards on the journey.

When we ended for the night, the party was fending off a large force of hobgoblins, and, having sustained several serious wounds and counting themselves outnumbered, began discussing secondary character concepts… but the fight was far from over.

It is now the 6th of Brewfest, 599 CY.
XP: Forthcoming

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Arc 2, Session 15, the Stone Archway
The Flinty Hills of Bust!

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 22nd of Reaping, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Elzedar, mongrelman rogue (absent)
Losien, elf rouge/wizard,
Tal4en, fraal psion,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Alianna, olven wizard, (absent) and
Akono, human gamba fighter (absent).

(Needless to say, with only half the group present, we didn’t accomplish a great deal…)

We rejoin our intrepid band in Greyhawk City, where they had determined to spend a few days getting well and truly shut of the swamp. On their second night in town, Alexander (and Kitiana) were attacked in their bed by an invisible stalker, presumably sent by Venne the loan shark, who obviously no longer wanted to merely talk about recovering his loan. Though wounded by the elemental, Alexander and his companions soon slew the creature, and, having slightly burned their present apartments, moved down the hall to another room.

The next day Losien used his contacts at the thieves guild to investigate Venne, only to learn that he was highly placed and well protected, and unlikely to respond well to any sort of frontal assault.

Finally, the group decided that it was time to set off on the road again, and decided upon the Flinty Hills, so that Kitiana could question Nethin (session #8) about the archway in her dreams. They set off on horse and mule through the Cairn Hills, skirting the shore of the Nyr Dyv, bound for Urnst and proper roads.

Almost a month of travel brought the group to the city of Womtham in Nyrond, where they stopped for a few days because a carnival was in
town. Tal4en and Alexander soon found themselves running a con in which Alexander told fortunes, which he purported to ‘translate’ from Tal4en (who was actually insulting or merely rambling aimlessly most of the time anyway). Alianna and Kitiana attended the daily joust, and
condescended to give their tokens to Sir Elgar the Swift of Knurl and Sir Guillaume the Archer of Innspa, respectively. Though Sir Guillaume
led through most of the passes, he eventually fell to Sir Elgar in the end. Both ladies sent their regrets to the knights concerning the celebration afterwards.

In Womtham itself the group met Burke Hammertoe, one of the city’s most popular smiths, who not only knew Nethin (second cousin on my mother’s side, once removed), but gave them directions to the Gul Shaledep, the dwarven town where they both were from. Losien and Burke traded genteel insults throughout the exchange, as Burke boxed up some packages for the group to deliver by way of introduction.

Traveling to Gul Shaledep involved several more days of travel, and several off camera fights with bands of orcs and goblins met along the way. The trail to Gul Shaledep was well marked by stone monoliths, and the town itself consisted of a fabulous gateway carven into the first of the true mountains of the Rakers, with a small ‘tall town’ ghetto lining a 400 yard grotto that dropped away from the canyon floor (like cliff dwellings, wrought medieval style).

After finding a place at one of the inns, the party contacted a messenger to call on Nethin, who arrived in the early evening. Thanking them for the deliveries, he provided the group with a rough map of the site where the arch was located, though he warned that the Church of Celestian considered the site off limits to all but their most trusted personnel. He also intimated that they had managed to open the gateway only once, but that doing so had resulted in the deaths of all those present when they were sucked through the gate to the far side. As we parted for the evening, the group was preparing to set out once more, their next destination perhaps a bit uncertain…

It is now the 24th of Goodmonth, 599 CY.
XP: 500

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Arc 2, Session 14, The Stone Archway
Oh, the Humanity!

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 6th of Reaping, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Losien, elf rouge/wizard,
Tal4en, fraal psion,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Alianna, olven wizard, and
Akono, human gamba fighter.

We left our heroes on the roof of the Marsh Tower, finishing off the last of their foes and preparing for a descent. Wishing to know what they were up against, Kitiana used her spellfire abilities to drain the illusion blocking their view of what lay below, which bears some description.

At the base of the tower’s interior lay a wooden vessel not unlike a spelljammer. As the party stared down into the hole, the first gout of black smoke poured from what Tal43n identified as a probable steam engine, and two wooden screws projected from the flanks of the vessel, presumably it’s engine.

Staring back up at the party were several dozen hobgoblins, who unleashed a hail of arrows in response to the party’s revealing their intent. As the ship tore through Alianna’s web, the party responded with a variety of fire based magics, hoping to cripple the ship before it could outdistance them in the air. Alexander caught a grappling hook on the rail, and Akono jumped for the rope; the hobgoblins responded by simply cutting the rope, leaving Akono to drop into the shaft.

When their first salvos failed to down the ship, the party mounted their summoned hippogriffs anew and took off in pursuit, as they could see from the poorly executed flight of their quarry that it was aflame and sorely wounded; fortunately for the aerial team they failed to gain any distance on the ship, which eventually exploded, throwing dead hobgoblins and debris across a wide swath of the swamp.

Returning to the tower, the party spent most of the day searching it for treasure, and, after freeing the lizard folk prisoners and returning them to their kin, finally a small team went out to find the wreckage of the flying ship. Not much was left, but Losien and Tal4en did locate most of the corpse of a doppelganger they assumed to have been the ‘boss’ their captive had spoken of. A map located on his body charted a course between their location and a point on the coast of the Icy Sea, far to the north.

After securing the tower, the party journeyed north to retrieve their load of ‘floatwood’ from the druids they’d left it in the care of, only to discover their grove had been chopped down, their bodies in shallow graves, and the ‘floatwood’ gone. A single hobgoblin grave was located, and questioning the corpse via magic revealed that the bulk of the hobgoblins from the tower had left under cover of darkness, slaughtered the druids, and taken the wood – he’d been the only casualty on their side.

Returning to Greyhawk, the party reported back to the agency that had sent them out to investigate the tower in the first place. The proctor who they dealt with even bought the plans for the ship they’d recovered amongst their other treasure…

While getting ready for their next outing, Alexander learned that Janus Tandover and his fleet had run afoul of bad weather and lake monsters, and been decimated in crossing the Nyr Dyv. Tandover, however, was known to be among the survivors, and had last been seen in the Duchy of Urnst.

It is now the 22nd of Reaping, 599 CY.

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Arc 2, Session 13, The Stone Archway
Why won't he just die already?!?

Our Journey began the 11th of Coldeven, 599 CY.
Last session it was the 6th of Richfest, 599 CY.

Our Merry band consists of the following:

Elzedar, mongrelman rogue
Losien, elf rouge/wizard,
Tal4en, fraal psion,
Alexander, human swashbuckler,
Kitiana, human cleric of Mystra,
Alianna, olven wizard, and
Okono, human gamba fighter.

Guest starring in a 1 night cameo: Omi, human druid. (played by my daughter, Maggie)

As we rejoin our intrepid adventurers, they were securing their hobgoblin captive and moving further into the swamp, to better avoid another patrol. When they felt safe enough, they brought their captive around, and began to question him under a Zone of Truth.

The hobgoblin was surprisingly forthcoming, though Alex detected that he was trying to stall for as much time as he could in answering. The group learned that 200 or so hobgoblins occupied that tower, and that the ‘boss’, who was some kind of a shapeshifter, claimed it as having belonged to his grand sire. They had come to ‘bring civilization to this wretched swamp’.

When asked how the group might safely enter the tower, their captive suggested stowing away in one of the deliveries that a subjugated lizard folk tribe was soon to make. Scouting the lizard folk village, the group discovered that the village sat near a strange grove of large trees that resembled oak, and that the lizard folk were engaged in tending and milling these trees into planks.

On further questioning, their captive revealed that the lizard folk were kept docile by holding their shaman captive in the largest of the huts, and that perhaps another half dozen hobgoblins kept the populace in check. Elzedar and Losien elected to scout an approach to the shaman, hoping that if he were freed, the lizard folk would rise up against the hobgoblins. The rest of the group planned to take out the visible hobgoblins when their two forward observers were spotted freeing the shaman.

In the course of their approach to the shaman’s hut, Losien spotted two individuals approaching the village who seemed distinctly out of place; a gnome in full plate leading a bound human female in robes towards the camp. Losien tried to hide but failed, giving the gnome plenty of warning that an attack was coming…

Losien fired a poisoned arrow at the gnome, who seemed to shrug off the worst of it’s effects easily. As the gnome closed to melee range, Losien noticed also that the gnome’s helm was familiar in that it couldn’t be opened – obviously the gnome followed Mabelrode. An eye engraved on the brow of thew helm flashed once at Losien, but to little effect.

Elzedar joined the fray, but the gnome continued to concentrate his attacks against Losien, who he quickly drove into near unconsciousness; when Losien finally succumbed to his wounds and dropped to quaff a potion, only then did the gnome turn to Elzedar. Elzedar did note that when Losien finally stood up again, a voice inside the helmet seemed to call a warning out in a language that he didn’t understand.

The gnome quickly turned back to Losien, who unleashed a lightning bolt from a scroll, which seemed to stagger the gnome a little, and served notice to everyone everywhere that things weren’t going exactly as planned. As Alex, Tal4en, and Okono ran to free the shaman, Kitiana and Alianna moved to aid the rogues…

After several more rounds of bashing away at the gnome, he finally fell to Kitiana’s spellfire, which seemed to overload whatever magical defenses his armor was granting him. The others, having slaughtered the hobgoblins who held the shaman prisoner, joined in the brief melee with the lizard folk against the other hobgoblins.

After detecting that most of the gnome’s equipment was both magical (and as Tal4en detected, aware on one level or another), the group tied up the gnome with their hobgoblin and went to the village to talk to the lizard folk. Though Losien had promised the hobgoblin he’d be released, he promptly gave his location to the lizard folk; the lizard folk, however, could find no trace of him or the gnome – only broken ropes.

The gnome’s captive, Omi, revealed that she had been sent by a druidic circle on the outskirts of the swamp to investigate the disappearance of two members of their order, as well as the recent exodus of several lizard folk tribes from the central swamp.

The shaman thanked the group for freeing him, and told the tale of how his people had been enslaved by the hobgoblins, whose chief had directed them to plant the seeds that grew the trees the party had spotted, and who had also provided two druids who, after having their legs amputated, were forced to cast plant growth on the trees so that they could be harvested quickly. The wood from the trees, the shaman told them, when treated with chemicals that the hobgoblins provided, gained the power of levitation; a single board worked free of the straps that held it to the sledge it was on for transport obligingly flew straight up into the air and quickly disappeared!

The party then decided to escort the druids back to their circle, and left the shaman and his people to gather as many tribes as they could to take revenge against the hobgoblins. They would return in a week to lead the assault, and made plans to rendezvous with them on their return.

Using the sledge that the lizard folk transported the planks on, the group made the journey to the druid’s circle with Omi and the two former captives. The druids thanked the party for returning their fellows to them, and though they had no knowledge of the type of wood they brought with them, agreed to guard it for them until their return. Another plank was released, to the amazement of all. Omi was sent with the party to be of whatever assistance she could be.

Returning to rendezvous with the lizard folk nearly a week later, they discovered that nearly 300 warriors had been assembled to aid them. They planned to have the lizard folk mount a ground assault, while they would ride hippogriffs summoned by Kitiana to the roof of the tower, and fight their way inside. The blossoming of a fireball on the roof would serve as the lizard folk’s signal to begin their charge (and yes, they were fairly well aware that this would result in a bloodbath… for the lizard folk).

The plan went to spec right up to the point where the hippogriffs tried landing on the center of the tower’s roof, and discovered it was an illusion.Pulling up, Alianna webbed the area to keep anything from emerging (like hails of arrows, or reinforcements). A quick melee finished off the forces on the rooftop, and the party prepared to descend into the tower itself…

It is now the 6th of Reaping, 599 CY.
XP: 1100.

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