» Galifar Calendar / Campaign Timeline     » Amassed Loot     » Monster Roster     » Current Party Stats    

February 3, 2007


Alunys' Journal

Nymm 2, 998 YK
near Mossmantle in the Eldeen Reaches

Well, I didn’t exactly find “evil” in Mossmantle, but I did find a cause to champion. I had just entered the local tavern of this tiny village, with a warforged named Defender in tow (I’d found him by a signpost at the edge of town— to all appearances he was waiting for instructions that the sign wasn’t providing), in my normal travel attire and Templar tabard, when the town council (who evidently has their meetings there), came up to us and expressed concern over bandits hitting caravans on the 200-mile road between Varna and Mossmantle. While I don’t think for a minute that the bandits are the Evil falling from the stars, it is good to know that they felt they could trust me with this task. Defender volunteered to go readily, as did a local shifter woman named Alayi. The council also “provided” us with Tomas, one of their wayward youth, who needed to do some “community service.” Apparently they felt his could best serve them by leaving town for a bit.

I suggested we travel by night, both for the sake of my eyesight and the better opportunity to come across any evil keeping late hours. The others readily agreed (well, Alayi and Defender agreed, anyway), so we rested up and headed out at nightfall.

This proved to be useful; several hours into our walk, for we weren’t provided with mounts, we saw a glow over a hill. Alayi, with her wolf companion Fang, and I decided to head towards it, and soon we heard shouting as well. A barn was a blaze, and a bucket brigade of local farmers was doing its best to put the fire out. An old man from the next farm over told me it was “Mevin’s farm” and that there were no apparent survivors in the nearby farmhouse (also ablaze, and we could not get close enough to enter). He indicated that about a dozen humanoids had been seen leaving the scene heading north. There was little left to salvage at the farm, so we opted to track down the arsonists.

Fang and Alayi were able to easily track the group. We followed their path for four hours, through forest, eventually arriving at a low hill with a cave entrance. Entering this, we found the way forked left and right— we headed right first, soon coming to a cavern with water pooling in it, faint voices coming from an exit at the far side. Alayi crept over and determined that it would be unwise to pass through the cavern beyond, as it was filled with purple shriekers (mushroom sentinels). We backtracked and went to the left fork, hoping to avoid having the fungi announce our presence.

Defender insisted on leading at this point (he was “protecting” us), and he accidentally stepped on a tripwire. With an ominous sound, a gate came down at the far end of the hall, and right between Tomas and the rest of us! Worse, a large, growling blue creature with tentacles came skulking towards us, blurring and shifting with each step— a displacer beast! I attempted to smite it but my attack seemed to go right through it. Frustrated, I wanted to get closer but Defender insisted on “protecting” me from getting around him in the narrow hallway. I tried hitting the creature with an arrow and managed to hit the warforged in the back instead. A few more arrows and none were managing to hit, though the shifter and warforged had a least wounded it. Unfortunately, it was holding its own and wounding them as well.

I heard Tomas manage to get past the gate behind us and was running towards the beast. Worried, I yelled, “Get back!” and produced a flame from my hand, intent on hitting the beast. Instead, Tomas tumbled past the beast, coming up behind it. I lobbed the flame at the creature, and it went right through without harming it. Worse, Tomas thought I was trying to hit him!

Thankfully Alayi managed to strike the beast a fatal blow. While Tomas ranted about our situation (and my method of attack), we searched through the creature’s den, finding some gold, a potion and a gem, plus the bones of its untold victims.

Posted by Kristin at 15:13 | Alunys’ Journal

February 4, 2007


Defender's Journal

We travel to help protect caravan and see strange lights. Find a farm burning, decide to stop people who caused it. Fall into trap, and with much arguing defeat strange beast. We move on now.

Posted by Fred at 10:41 | Defender’s Journal

February 9, 2007


Alunys' Journal

Nymm 3, 998 YK
near Mossmantle in the Eldeen Reaches

I healed Defender as best as I could, and Alayi healed Tomas. Before we could plan our next actions, we heard voices behind us in the corridor. Someone had seen our torchlight and mentioned it to his companion, who said “Go tell Darvin” and “The beast is dead.” Not wanting a bigger fight than we were about to get, we charged down the corridor, coming to four somewhat startled bandits. We made quick work of them, making sure no one could go back and alert any more thugs to our presence.

We decided to go in the opposite direction from where the bandits had come; and soon heard more voices and saw lights. Creeping forward, we found ourselves looking over a cavern with torches, tables, benches and dozens of male humans gathered; at the far end, a wooden pen was filled with what appeared to be captive farmers. There were two more passages leading out of the cavern. As much as we wanted to rescue the prisoners, there was no way we could fight our way to them— we needed to encounter those bandits a few at a time.

Deciding we could wait for another patrol to come looking for the first, we went back to the displacer beast’s lair and moved the bodies of the dead bandits and closed the gate. It wasn’t long before we heard voices from beyond it: “Damn gate is closed; where the hell are they?” and “Tell Nature Boy his beast is loose.”

While they obtained keys and fumbled with the gate, we had prepared to ambush them, and though the ambush didn’t go quite as intended, we killed two of them. Unfortunately, “Nature Boy” was an Ashbound druid who sicced at least seven wolves on us, so he and another of the men made an escape while we dealt with the summoned creatures.

After the battle, we noticed that Defender wasn’t moving. We were not capable of healing him, but somehow Tomas new that the warforged had a “repair kit” with him, so we dragged his 300-pound mass out into the forest and set about trying to repair him. Well, Tomas and I did, Alayi had to care for her wolf companion who had not fared so well against the summoned wolves.

repairing a warforged is not a quiet affair— it took hours, but eventually he was able to move and talk again, which also meant he could handle further repairs on his own— but only at the expense of the rest of us getting any useful rest.

One of the retired priests in the Cathedral uses a small device to quiet his snoring during services— perhaps we could get something like that for Defender when he’s “fixing” himself. Though, a potion of some sort to restore his body the way a healing draught restores a flesh-and-blood creature may be more effective for now— it would certainly be quieter and quicker.

Posted by Kristin at 00:26 | Alunys’ Journal

February 11, 2007

Why did that dumb hunk of iron just WAVE at the bad guys?!?!?

Tomas' Journal

Well, I wanted to leave, but everyone else insisted we stay.

It was almost the death of us, but we did manage to find the bandits along with a bunch of captured farmers. Despite our weakened state, we decided we had to try rescuing the prisoners.

I came up with an ingenious plan to take on the overwhelming numbers of bandits with our small group, but it was foiled by the warforged’s refusal to hide! (apparently, he thought “waving” at the enemy was a suitable alternative!)

At least we managed to escape with *our* lives! (dragging the Incredible De-Activated Defender behind us!) I hope those big scratches on his face from being drug across the stone floor of the cave will remind him.... listen to the rogue!!!

Once we got out into the woods, we hid in a clearing while I beat the crap out of Defender with his Hammer and other “repair” tools. Good stress relief! (It also seems to have knocked him back into some kind of fighting shape... Bonus!)

So, now it looks like we have to go back in the caves and deal with these bandits before they kill any more innocents.

Time for another plan!

Posted by Dave at 15:19 | Tomas’ Journal

February 14, 2007

For starters

Alayi's Journal

I’d been living around Mossmantle for a while, having heard of some trouble with their supply caravans. When the town council made an announcement at the local inn, I made sure to be there to hear it.

Bandits have been attacking folk on the road between here and Varnar; they need to find out who, and put a stop to it! The council looked for volunteers, and I was quick to step up.

The others who wanted to help are a mixed bag; an elven Silver Flame paladin, a young human named Tomas, and a warforged. I thought about calling him Al, but he wants to be called Defender. Because he wants to defend someone. Thankfully, he chose the Silver Flame (Alune, I think. No, Alunys is it).

Although there was some talk of getting horses (or a wagon for the warforged), we walked out of town on our own two feet. “Getting to know you” talk quickly left me wondering about Tomas - he seems half juvenile delinquent, and almost proud of being warned out of town before sunset. Eventually, I scouted ahead of the others, leaving Fang to “track” Tomas. Better to keep an eye on him - and I thought I’d be watching out for the Silver Flame on this jaunt!

We agreed to continue walking past nightfall, partly in hopes of meeting one of the caravans, and partly in hopes of finding trouble before it found us. Tomas thought this was heresy. Apparently “people sleep at night” (I mused aloud if he wanted us to sleep so he could “share” our stuff). The Silver Flame passed her time in converting Defender... sort of.

Eventually, I was distracted by a glow off to the east; it seemed like a fire well off the trail, and I wanted to check it out. The others wanted to follow, but they were not very quiet! Alunys and I outpaced the rest quickly, and soon heard shouts ahead. Over a rise, the glow was brighter, and from the top of the hill we saw a barn and farmhouse in flames. There were local farmers throwing buckets of water at the structures, too.

When we came down to help, we asked about the owners of the farm, but no one knew where they were. When Tomas and Defender caught up, I asked the warforged if he could withstand the flames to check inside. Apparently warforged can be damaged by fire, but although he was willing to look, the places were collapsing in on themselves - too late! Alunys asked aloud if anyone knew what had happened, and an old man stepped forward.

He was from the next farm over; on seeing flames, he’d sent his son to call out the neighbors and come to the farm himself. As he got closer he saw a group of men heading north. Hmmm... we saw no one on the road, the group must be off across the plains, somewhere. Alunys began looking for signs of magic, but I pointed out that Fang and I make a business of tracking...

Fang had better luck than I, quickly scenting a trail to follow. We left the farmers to finish putting out the flames, and headed north to see who and why the farmstead had been attacked in the first place. Some four hours later, we reached the wood. Sure enough, these bandits were using the forest for cover.

Once inside the treeline, we came upon a low hill with a cave entrance half-hidden among some boulders. I called Fang, and we waited while the whole party discussed the best way to approach the situation (and Defender pulled out a sword and attached it to his arm. Hm). We had little in the way of stealth, of course, and before I knew what was happening Tomas was looking innocent as Defender strode across the clearing and down a narrow passage. Thanks for instigating this, Tomas!

I quickly followed, quietly as I could. Forty feet in and the passage widened slightly, finally opening to a rough cavern. On the far side the passage continued, but forked left and right. Defender fetched up here, unsure of which way to take. I tried using my skills to discern which passage was used - both, of course, although the right-hand side was the most popular. Fang was unsure, herself, as was the Silver Flame who was sensing for “evil”.

I decided to take the right-hand passage, and the others followed, so I emphasized to the warforged to stay with the Silver Flame. After many twists and turns, the tunnel opened into another larger cavern. This one had water dripping into pools, and mushrooms and fungi growing on the floor. A path was worn across the stone, leading to yet another tunnel, from which voices could faintly be heard. I told the others to wait, then sneaked across for a better look-and-listen.

Defender blocked the passage, conveniently enough, since Tomas still wanted to follow! I snuck up the passageway until I reached a curtain, pulled across the path. I muffled my torch until only a faint glow, then crept up to the curtain and gently lifted a corner. A small cavern was revealed, another curtain across the way, and several large purple mushrooms to each side. How lucky that I can see in very low light! Shrieker mushrooms, just waiting for movement or light to give the alarm!

I gently lowered the corner of the cloth, then snuck back down the tunnel to tell the others of my discovery. The Silver Flame was all for calling them out and attacking them openly, I was hoping we could sneak across somehow, and Tomas made a quick trip for himself in the hopes of finding a secret passage around the trap. Unable to find anything, he returned, and we decided to explore the left-hand passage instead.

Back to the fork in the tunnel, and Defender first in line with his torch held high. I warned him to stop quickly if he saw anything at all, so I could go ahead and check it out. I might have saved my breath; we were walking along when I heard “Oops” as he walked right through the tripwire, breaking it! A wood-framed gate crashed down from the ceiling, trapping everyone except Tomas. From up ahead, we heard another crash - and then a low growl.

Here came something - a large panther, with tentacles! It blurred and shifted as it growled at us, and then Defender stepped up and blocked the hallway. I managed to squeeze in next to him and shoot at the thing, but my arrow passed right through its body. Alunys was trying to shoot it, too, but her arrows went wide - Defender was in her way. He was quickly in combat with the beast, so I put my bow away and pulled my scimitar.

Unfortunately, I had to pull my bow again due to the trouble Alunys was having. I told Fang to stay back, while the warforged and the Silver Flame argued about the meaning of “defending” - he wouldn’t let her fight, although he was taking a beating. He even got hit by one of her arrows but it didn’t make him let her by! I started shooting past the argument and into the fight, even though I knew the displacer panther was only half-likely to notice. As Defender got more beat-up, I decided to ask Fang to trip him so we could fight, too.

It took a couple of attempts, but finally Defender hit the floor and I pulled my scimitar again. I heard the sound of the wooden gate opening, too, and hoped it was Tomas! But with no time to waste, I sicced Fang on the beast, and shifted into the fight. We traded blows for a short time, but then the Silver Flame told us to back up - despite that, Tomas suddenly tumbled through the battle and popped up behind the beast - and then Alunys began to throw fire at the panther.

Tomas was swinging and hitting it from behind, while also yelling that we were “leaving him” and calling the paladin names. He seemed to be surprised that she was throwing fire at the beast with him behind it. As she seared it with her spell, I finally got some shots in with my bow - and finally finished it off. While they argued over battle tactics, I pointed out that he was acting like a kid. Unfortunately, that’s what he is...

Posted by Kate at 00:54 | Alayi’s Journal

And next

Alayi's Journal

After a bit of healing magic, Defender walked right off down the passage again. Alunys called him back quickly - what about more traps? - and we ended up following Tomas who searched for traps, while Alunys searched for secret passages. I tried to talk to Defender about fighting tactics, but quickly realized that although he has lots of training, he has little real-world experience. The wars ended right after he was built!

I also listened for people coming to check the trap we’d set off; it only made sense that they would. Sure enough, Fang and I caught the sound of steps behind us; Defender quickly covered his torch. We all listened intently, and Alunys told us that someone had seen our light. She told us not to move, listened - and then told us to attack! I immediately dashed back down the passage.

Around a corner I ran into four armed guards. I decided to barrel right on through, unsure if there were more further up the tunnel. I took a couple of hits, Defender came up behind and killed one of my attackers with a blow, and I ran on up the tunnel with Fang at my heels and my sword and torch ready. Almost to the fork in the tunnel and I turned back, confident that we were alone. I was healing myself a little bit as we went, when one of the guards came fleeing toward me! I pulled my scimitar and smiled.

An arrow flew by, then Defender came running up, which spurred the guard on; he even got past me as I slashed at him! Fang and I chased him back up the tunnel and finished him off, then listened closely for anyone else coming. All was quiet, so I took his money and his club and we went back to the others yet again. They had finished off the other guards, so I replaced my arrows from their gear and we headed up the tunnel, searching fast before someone came looking for the search party. Alunys said she’d heard that the leader’s name is Darvin.

Finally, we heard voices, and saw a light. I told the others to wait a moment, then crept close. The passage ended, opening out to a larger cavern, and I saw that we were on a ledge above the cavern floor. The ledge was also barred firmly with wooden poles. No chance of getting through them without being noticed, I fear! In the cavern I saw wood tables, benches, and torches on the walls. There were about a dozen more human guards, and on the far side, I saw a group of peasant farmers imprisoned by more wooden poles in a pen. There were two passages out of the cavern. I listened to the talk, but it was mostly about dice and drinking. I realized that the furniture was made of broken-up wagons, and there were even wheels piled in a corner. We had our bandits red-handed!

I crawled back to tell the others what I’d seen, and discuss what to do. Back to town? Hide nearby and heal up? Ambush more search parties until there was no one left? Somehow get the farmers loose and armed, and hope for the best? Eventually, we headed back to the trap, hoping to reset it and hide the bodies and somehow get a little rest. I also tried telling ghost stories about the bodies to Tomas... but now voices were heard at the gate. No rest for the weary!

The voices were commenting on the gate being closed - apparently, they assumed the searchers trapped themselves, so they sent someone to get keys, and “nature boy”, who controls the beast. I peeked around the corner, and sure enough, the light was fading. We had a few minutes to decide what to do. Although we were still hurt, the consensus was to wait in ambush. Tomas was hidden under a pile of bodies, while Defender stood in the panther’s lair. Alunys and I stood up the passage, bows drawn.

Soon, we saw several people, including a druid with a bone-plated giant rat. They stopped when they saw the pile of bodies, then caught sight of Defender. Who said “Hey” and waved at them with his sword arm. While I stared in disbelief, the first guard quickly stepped back and whispered to the rest, and the druid began to cast a spell. NOW Defender chose to charge into battle! Alunys and I had to walk up to shoot with any chance to hit, after that!

Defender was plowing through the guards, and Alunys shot and killed another, but the druid cast a spell to summon three wolves to fight us. I sicced Fang on one, then shot the spellcaster - but he summoned three more. They pulled Defender down, Fang was bitten, and the other druid ran away with his rat-thing. We were left to fight the horde... which lasted longer than Alunys expected, making me realize this “nature-boy” must be Ashbound. Tomas killed a wolf, and the last guard ran away. We were still fighting the summoned wolves; I found out that the paladin can use her bow to bludgeon things, but Fang went down before her attacker dissipated.

I dropped everything to stabilize my friend while the battle raged around us. When I looked up again, I realized that Defender was down, too, and that Tomas had killed several of the wolves himself. He and Alunys dragged Defender while I carried Fang, and we made a run for the safety of the woods outside the cave. Somehow, we made it, with me covering our tracks all the way.

Tomas and Alunys spent hours figuring out how to fix Defender enough to wake him up, while I stood watch. As soon as the warforged was awake, I crashed!

Posted by Kate at 01:00 | Alayi’s Journal

But now

Alayi's Journal

I was pleasantly surprised to wake rested - no emergencies! I prayed, then healed myself and my wolf while we talked over what to do next. We felt some urgency to rescue the farmers, for we had no idea what the bandits had in store for them. We were too far away from the cave to see how many have entered and left since we’d escaped. So, we decided to hide near the cave and watch for a while.

After some time, four men came out of the trees and entered the cave; the druid was not among them. Defender immediately suggested moving over to that spot, hoping to ambush the next “patrol” on their way out. We managed to move without too much noise, then settled down; Defender insisted that the next patrol would be out within an hour. An hour was too long for Tomas; I had to chuck a rock at him to stop his whistling.

By the end of three hours even the warforged was losing patience! We were talking over a frontal assault on the screaming mushrooms when I decided to take a quick scout around the area in search of some other opening to the bandits’ cave. Fang came along; once in the brush, I think we both were relieved to have a little peace and quiet. Even better, we found a narrow cleft in another rock outcropping!

I climbed down the steep entrance a short way, listening in the darkness, but heard and saw nothing. Still, it was something to tell the others about, so we returned and I told them of my hunch that this was somehow the “back door”. Tomas was unconvinced, but in the end, we all went back for a closer look. Defender pulled out his everburning torch and climbed right in, while we waited at the top. Soon, he was back, telling us that the cave widened out to a deep pool of water.

Hmm. Now I was not so sure of my hunch! Warforged might not need to breathe, but... Defender decided to go back for a closer look, and we waited some more.

His next climb out had better news: the pool of water was deep, but fifteen feet under the rock it led to another cave, which had torches and buckets in it! A short swim would reach it, or a pull from a rope. Tomas immediately refused to consider the idea! He did promise to come back in the front way to provide a distraction, and I knew Fang would have trouble climbing, so I sent her with him while Alunys and I climbed down to the water with Defender.

We reached the beach with ease, following a new tunnel worn through the stone until we came to another cavern. This one had lanterns on the walls, but was full of boxes, not people. More loot, I guessed, and edged around to the opposite side to look out the door while Defender and Alunys had a look at the stash. The tunnel out of the cavern curved, so I followed it until I reached a door in the wall - and could see light at the end of the passage.

The other two caught up with me at this point, and Defender tried the door, but it would not open. Since all stayed quiet, Alunys looked under the door. It was dark. So, she knelt down with a torch and shoved it close, and we both looked and saw - boots! We got up fast!!

Then, as if the gods were watching over us all, the shrieking mushrooms suddenly went off.

We heard lots of movement in the tunnel ahead, and movement behind the door. We stepped back for Defender to bash the door in, but he couldn’t get enough momentum in the narrow tunnel to do it. As he headed off down the tunnel, paladin in tow, I pulled out a dagger and used the club as a hammer to try to wedge the door shut on its mysterious occupant.

Of course, as the warforged and the Silver Flame reached a room full of guards getting ready to hunt down Tomas and Fang, I heard something being drawn behind the door! I quickly dropped the club and put my dagger away, pulling my scimitar and swinging wildly as the door opened to reveal a man with a shield, wearing a chain shirt, and wielding a big sword. Defender and Alunys attacked the guards, who were yelling “Get them!” and probably very confused; then Alunys was backing toward me, trading arrows with someone in the room.

I had to focus on the man in front of me, despite hearing Defender screaming “You’re all going to die!” down the hallway, and Alunys cheering as she shot her foes to death. Thankfully, I was able to dispatch my opponent to an early grave, and take a quick look into the room behind him. Some twenty feet across, it looked like a bedroom, and it appeared empty, so I ran down to see what my comrades were up to.

The cavern was full of the bodies of guards, and Alunys, who pointed out the exit for me to follow Defender. I found myself on the other side of the shrieker cavern, ran through to the tunnel, and found Tomas and Fang and Defender and the rest of the guards, also dead. I greeted my big bad wolf who’d killed a guard herself, then Tomas gleefully stabbed the shriekers. We headed back to the main room, which I finally recognized from when I saw it from the displacer panther’s tunnel.

The prisoners were still in their cage, and I thought of the man I’d killed, so we checked his body - sure enough, there were keys! We gave the man’s longsword to Alunys, and found a locked chest in the room, but first took the keys out to release the farmer, Mevin, and his wife and sons. Although we’d seen no sign of the druid, we decided to wait out the night in the cavern and help get everyone home in the morning. Mevin hadn’t heard much while imprisoned, though he thought they were to be sold as slaves (which the druid was angry over - he didn’t want anyone taken from the farm in the first place).

Tomas came down to tell us that he’d gotten the chest open, and found bags and bags of coins to go with the stolen goods from the caravans. I was pleased to think we could give farmer Mevin a head start on rebuilding his home! As Tomas discovered a secret compartment in the chest and revealed a suit of armor emblazoned with the symbol of the Emerald Claw (yech!), and some potion vials, it dawned on me that we would need help getting everything back to Mossmantle.

While the rest stayed to guard the farmers and the goods, I decided to make a run for Mossmantle on my own. I left Fang behind to help guard, and swam out through the “back door”, hoping not to meet the Ashbound druid!

Thankfully, it was a quiet run through the nighttime woods, and near dawn, I was thumping on the door to the head of the town council. Garsay was already awake, and I quickly told him of our adventures. He agreed to get wagons together, and volunteers, so I curled up for a nap!

I was a slow trip back, but eventually I led the wagon train as close to the bandits’ cave as possible, and found that everyone was safe. It took the rest of the day to clear out the caves and send Mevin and his family home, but we all pitched in to help. We found ourselves hailed as heroes, and given the rest of the coins we’d found as a reward, and invited back to Mossmantle for a festival in our honor. It promised to be quite a party.

It took a couple of days for all the events, and I had a chance to get to know the Silver Flame a little better. Although I was worried that there were more bandits to find on the road to Varnar, Alunys had a more specific worry. She’d come to Mossmantle following a prophecy, that foretold evil falling from the sky in this place. She spent a lot of time watching.

And, midmorning after the festival, her prophecy seemed fulfilled! Something was sighted on the eastern horizon, approaching rapidly. It turned out to be a large airship, a ring of fire encircling it, and headed westward over our heads. There’s nothing but the Wood and the Demon Wastes to the west, why were they so far out of their normal routes? Tomas was jumping up and down with excitement, but I was worried about fire in the forest...

And as the ship passed overhead, we saw it lurch to one side, heard explosions, saw smoke. Defender was shouting at everyone to take cover, although it quickly passed us by. Trailing smoke, it descended over the rise beyond Mossmantle and crashed nearby. We immediately ran after...

Posted by Kate at 01:02 | Alayi’s Journal

February 16, 2007


Alunys' Journal

Nymm 8, 998 YK
Mossmantle in the Eldeen Reaches

After declaring ourselves more or less rested, we decided to watch the bandit cave for a while to learn more about their comings and goings. We were quickly rewarded by seeing four bandits, apparently coming back from patrolling, enter the cave. Defender was quite sure that there would be a replacement patrol emerging soon….

Three hours later, the cave entrance was completely undisturbed by comings and goings. We needed to get those farmers out of there! Recalling the other doors from the great cavern inside, Alayi circled around to where she thought those might lead if they led to the outside; soon she came back with news of a crevasse fifteen or twenty minutes’ walk away.

The crevasse led 45’ down at a sharp angle, into water. Defender, who did not need to worry about drowning, went in and discovered that it was only a short “walk” under the water till he emerged in a cave with a small beach with buckets lining the edge. The bandits knew about the cave, but perhaps not about the opening to the outside, as there were no guards. While the shifter and I were willing to let Defender lead us the fifteen or so feet under water to the cave, Tomas said there was no way he was going in that way. Alayi didn’t think her wolf would do well underwater either, so the human and the wolf went around to the front entrance, planning to provide some sort of distraction for us, though of course it would take a while for them to get back to that entrance.

The remaining three of us went through the watery entrance and soon found ourselves going through a cavern lined with lanterns, crates and boxes, all no doubt stolen from the local caravans. We went a little ways down a tunnel and came to a door— a door apparently bolted from the inside, and Defender could not open it. Alayi and I peeked under with a torch and saw… boots. Before we could react to that though, Tomas found the perfect distraction to provide.

The shrieking mushrooms were announcing his arrival beyond the bandits’ main cavern. Defender and I ran towards the sound and found that we were at the opposite end— bandits were grabbing weapons and running towards the shrieking, past the imprisoned farmers, so I started firing arrows into them as they went to attack Tomas. Defender waded in beside me and started to cleave a swath through them, and I was glad he did, for they seemed to have a particular dislike for me!

I was wounded so severely in the first few seconds of the fight that I had to retreat a bit to heal myself. I could hear Alayi fighting someone behind me. I kept my back to her, as it sounded as though she had the upper hand, and continued to shoot arrows into the bandits. Finally all that could be heard was the shrieking mushrooms— I ran out to check on the farmers while Defender and Alayi went to find Tomas and Fang. Moments later, the four of them returned, the mushrooms having been silenced by Tomas.

Tomas went to the room Alayi indicated to search what we assumed was the jailor (Darvin) for keys. He returned and let the farmers out, then went back to search Darvin’s room more thoroughly. He found a good bit of gold, a nice longsword (which I now carry), some potions, and a tabard of the Emerald Claw. I am sorry to see the Order’s influence beyond the Five Nations. Or anywhere.

The farmers, it turns out, are Mevin, his wife, and two sons— not lost in the fire as we feared. Mevin believes that Darvin was planning on selling the family into slavery. He wants to rebuild where his barn and home stood, and though his neighbors will pitch in to help, we gave them a good portion of the gold we found, hoping it will pay for anything else that needs replaced.

Now came the matter of returning Mevin’s family to their land, and getting all the stolen goods back to Mossmantle. We figured Alayi could make it back faster on her own than with us in tow, so she took off on foot while we waited in the caves. The night was uneventful, and she returned a few hours after sunrise with half the village and as many wagons as they could provide.

After our return, the people of Mossmantle held a feast in our honor! We spent a few days just healing and recuperating from our time fighting the bandits, but soon everyone was restless again. My companions were considering heading to Varnar, or helping Mevin rebuild, but I told them about the reason I’d come to Mossmantle in the first place; I was reluctant to leave again now that there were not such urgent matters of evil to attend to elsewhere.

When the “Evil falls from the stars at the mantle of moss” arrived, it was not subtle. A large galley ship with with a ring of fire driving it— a Lyrandar airship— came into view just east of the hamlet. I don’t believe Alayi or Tomas had ever seen one. I’ve seen plenty, but never this far from the normal travel routes. And, this one was clearly in distress as it passed over us; it shuddered, smoke pouring from it, and with a lurch and the sound of some explosions, began an alarming descent to the west. It was going to crash….

Posted by Kristin at 23:56 | Alunys’ Journal

February 18, 2007

I Help

Defender's Journal

Ambush didn’t work, I fight as many as I could before everything went dark. When I came to we were in the forest again. I watch while others sleep, then we head back to cave. Set another ambush, but no one come, so wolf lady go look for back entrance. She find one and I go for walk under water. Tell them it a short swim to other side, no guards watching. Human not want to go in this way so he go with wolf around to front. I lead elf and wolf lady in back entrance. We fine stolen items, and a locked door, suddenly alarm goes off. I run to help human, and start killing bandits. When fighting over wolf lady goes back to town to get help and in morning we load wagons and head back to Mossmantle. Help raise barn and build home for farmer. Then flying ship goes over head. They’re not supposed to be out this far. Suddenly it starts to fall from sky, people will get hurt, I go help.

Posted by Fred at 11:48 | Defender’s Journal

February 21, 2007

Yet Still

Alayi's Journal

The airship came down on the plains, not in the forest, only a couple of miles away from Mossmantle. We quickly arrived on the scene, only to find the ship in pieces. The ground had been gouged deeply by wreckage, but the fire elemental was nowhere to be seen. Bodies, of course, were scattered hither and yon.

As we spread out to check for signs of life, the paladin scanned for signs of evil, too. She focused quickly on a faint trace to the northwest, but Defender discovered someone still alive under parts of the ship. He began hauling pieces of junk off of a gnome, Alunys scanned him and said he was not evil, and I reached in between rescuers to give him a quick stabilizing healing spell. He needed more help than I could give; his legs were crushed.

The ship itself was named the Silver Star; its crew consisted of humans and half-elves, all dead. Fang and I took a quick sweep around the area, looking for signs of anything leaving the crash site, and ran into a farmer telling the Silver Flame that he’d seen a large stone man heading northwest; a tall granite giant that was missing an arm. Back to the gnome we went, hoping to learn more.

The gnome was awake, and asking what had happened to his golem. We asked if it was the stone man, and he told us how it, his bodyguard, had gone berserk. The crew couldn’t stop its rampage. We asked him several other questions - who are you, why was the ship headed this way? - but he lost consciousness again. The warforged was ready to charge off into the unknown right then and there!

The gnome woke up again, thankfully, and was able to tell us a bit more. The golem wasn’t evil, he said (!), and it would not harm the ringbearer. He gave an iron ring to the paladin, telling us that the golem was supposed to obey the wearer’s instructions. When he fainted again, we searched him for more clues, and found papers identifying him as Roland Bramble, from the city of Sharn, Morgrave University. Alunys said that people from there spend their time looking for “things”.

I decided to find the golem’s missing arm, if possible, for our evil detector as well as for an idea of what to look for. I was glad to find it, and gladder still that it wasn’t moving. I half expected to see it crawling off to the northwest... Alunys saw evil within the thing. Defender decided to take it along “just in case” and slung it over his shoulder. Tomas found a golem footprint, and I found more; back toward the Towering Wood we went!

It was a slow trip, and I didn’t dare speed up; although it went generally northwest, the footprints didn’t take a straight line. After some miles, the Silver Flame tried calling it back with the iron ring, but we looked over the plain and saw nothing. After almost twenty miles, we could make out the treeline of the Towering Wood ahead - but Tomas was keen on getting horses from somewhere, and detoured to a farmhouse nearby.

The farmers hadn’t any horses to spare, but pointed us toward a horse ranch some hundred miles out of our way. We thanked them and continued. Of course, Tomas was tired, and didn’t mind letting everyone know. Defender even offered to carry him but he kept trudging and talking until the paladin started to take pity on him, too. When he plunked himself on the ground and refused to take another step, I shrugged, curled up, and went to sleep!

In the morning (thanks, Defender, for watching for us!), Alunys could still sense an evil aura to follow. We set out on the trail, despite Tomas’ opinion that we’d gone plenty far enough on this chase. The Silver Flame disagreed, telling him about the Voice that had told her a prophecy that seems to fit this event. She seems a little obsessed! They argued over philosophy for a while. The warforged commented on the increasing number of trees (although still a day’s walk from the Wood), and insisted that someone should climb up a thirty-foot sapling for a “better look”. I climbed one to make him happy, saw nothing, and we walked on.

We stopped at nightfall, and in the morning, the paladin had found berries for us to eat. Apparently, no one had much in the way of trail rations - hence Tomas’ desire to turn back! I was able to cast a spell on several of the berries to make meals for my companions, and we kept on. Finally, at the end of the day, we reached the treeline. There was a definite trail to follow through the underbrush!

That night, we could hear wolves howling, but they didn’t come too near. In the morning, I found blackberries to cast Goodberry on, shared them out, and prayed while Alunys worked on converting Defender again. Of course, all he wanted to know about were the military prospects within the Silver Flame organization...

We walked through the forest all day long, following the trail of footprints and faint evil. At nightfall, I went searching for more food, then went to bed, leaving Defender to stand watch. It is nice that he doesn’t have to sleep...

I didn’t get much sleep, either. We were woken by shouting from the warforged as he swiped at a black shadow with red-lit eyes. The paladin shouted that it was a wraith, then hit Defender with one of her arrows again. I saw Fang heading for the other end of the clearing - good girl! - and focused on casting a healing spell as I took a swipe at the shadow for myself. I got its attention - ow! - and Defender slashed it again with his magic sword arm, causing it to dissipate. I healed myself up and went back to bed!

In the morning, I cast my spell to feed us, and we were on our way. We hadn’t been travelling for long when we reached the outskirts of ancient ruins... and heard the sound of stone hitting stone! I quickly snuck up to see what was happening. I found our one-armed quarry, picking up rocks and throwing them to one side as if he was uncovering something. Interesting!

I snuck back to the others to tell them what I’d seen, wondering aloud how long he’d been at this project? Alunys put on the iron ring, and the warforged prepared to “slam” it; I think he’s been imagining a battle with someone like himself the whole time! Defender and I agreed that we did not want the golem to uncover whatever it was working on; it’s possessed by evil, after all.

Out walked the Silver Flame, and commanded the granite golem to stop digging. It stopped, stood up and looked at her. Tomas turned out to be curious about what was being uncovered, but she ordered it to re-cover the spot anyway. Then, she decided to sense the evil in the area - and was stunned by the intensity! Naturally, as soon as she went into shock the golem lurched toward her.

It drew back before it hit her, at least, which gave Defender his opportunity to “slam” it. With the golem occupied, Fang and I ran to the spot it was working on to see what was there. We found a stone shaft leading down, and a lid partially pulled away from capping it. Who knew what was down there? I quickly started shoving it back into place!

Alunys shook herself and pulled out her bow, but her arrow bounced harmlessly off the golem. It turned and swung at her, anyway! She was hurt, backed up, and gave the iron ring to Tomas. He told it to stop again; it looked at Tomas but did not back down. As it walked toward the two of them, Defender hit it again. It still swung at the paladin but it missed; she got out of the way as Defender slammed it a third time.

I kept shoving at the lid, the Silver Flame circled behind some ruins so as to heal herself, and Tomas backed away fast while telling the golem to stop - repeatedly. The golem kept turning to chase after the paladin (all that good energy!), which gave the warforged lots of chances to hit it. He was taking big chunks of granite off it. He was also taking a good deal of damage as the golem fought back.

Alunys decided to try her fire spell again, and blue flames were soon arcing over the ruins and searing the golem. Tomas was still shouting orders at it, so I called to him to help me shove on the lid. It was heavy, and I wanted only one enemy at a time! Thankfully, Defender was able to crush the golem to pieces; he immediately set to repairing the damage to himself.

While he did that, we peered over the edge of the shaft. Still quiet, and the paladin sensed no evil - that was a relief! The golem’s body still had a faint aura to it, which left us a mystery as to how it had become possessed. Tomas searched through the golem rubble and discovered an adamantine disk with a ruby in the center. On the disk was a relief-styled map to these ruins. And it wasn’t evil, either. The place seemed more interesting to me, after that!

I suggested closing the lid for the night (just in case), then checking out what was inside in the morning. So, we shoved it over the opening, and I went out to forage. I came back to find Tomas checking out the iron ring and the warforged still at work; at nightfall we went to bed. The next day, Defender had to finish his repairs, so I went out to find food to last us while exploring. I came back with four days’ worth.

The disk looked to be some sort of key, too - it had odd bumps on it. We tied a light to my rope and lowered it down the shaft, finding it to be about forty feet to the bottom, and opening out to a chamber of some sort. I decided it would be better to leave Fang outside, and gave her a hug and directions to be careful! Tomas tied the rope to make it easy to climb, and down we went...

Posted by Kate at 00:19 | Alayi’s Journal

February 25, 2007

Following and Finding

Defender's Journal

We found a lot of dead at the crash. All those people fell from the sky and only one survived. A farmer saw a stone giant walk into the forest. The survivor told us it was his bodyguard, but it went berserk. We followed it for several days. We found it at some ruins attempting to uncover something. We stopped it and found a small disk with a map on it. Now we are looking for what it wanted.

Posted by Fred at 14:17 | Defender’s Journal

February 28, 2007


Alunys' Journal

Nymm 13, 998 YK
Towering Wood in the Eldeen Reaches

We arrived in a field about two miles from town to find a horrific scene. The broken bodies of the Lyrandar ship’s crew and passengers were scattered in a wide swath, among fragments of the broken and smoldering Silver Star. The fire elemental that powered the ship was gone, and it seemed no one could have survived. Knowing I’d find evil, I attempted to search the field for it, and was rewarded with a faint aura near the edge of the wreckage. I went to find Defender for help clearing away debris, and found that he had found the only survivor of the crash, a gnome with horribly crushed legs. He got the gnome out and Alayi provided some stabilizing healing for him. While she did that, I turned back to where I’d sensed the evil, and found a huge stone arm. A farmer told me that he’d seen a one-armed stone man walking towards the northwest, away from the crash site. The gnome, Roland Bramble of Morgrave University (Sharn), was going in and out of consciousness, but said he knew stone man; it was supposed to be his protector on his journey. Something had caused it to go berserk and smash up the ship, causing the crash, but it had not been “evil” as far as he knew. He handed me a ring that would prevent it from harming the bearer, and asked that we find it. The gnome passed out again and was being carried back to Mossmantle to rest; we agreed to leave immediately, as there was nothing we could do for the dead other than bring their killer to justice, if possible. Defender decided to bring the stone arm along, though I doubted we’d have any trouble recognizing an evil, one-armed stone man!

The aura of evil was easy enough to track, as was the trail the construct left through the fields and forest. Our only real problem was that it was outpacing us, and did not need to stop for rest. If only we’d had some horses! We attempted to pay to borrow some from a local farm as we passed, but they needed their animals to bring in their crops. Still, we covered at least two dozen miles before I noticed that Tomas looked like he was going to pass out from exhaustion, so we made camp. While Defender took watch, I found some berries and asked Alayi to use her druid magic to fortify them; they’d have to last us if the journey took more than another day.

We did the same thing the next day, and the next, thought that night our camp was attacked by a wraith. I smote poor Defender again in the ensuing combat, but he just shrugged it off and went back to watching over us.

After another day of travel, we found ourselves deeper in the Towering Wood. Soon we heard the sound of stone hitting stone, and followed a trail to some overgrown ruins.

We entered the clearing and found the one-armed man pushing rocks away from a stone well cover. Whatever its reason, I felt that we shouldn’t let it finish the task. I ordered it to stop and help up the ring, and it hesitated. I attempted to detect for evil again; the results provided me with such a sensory overload that I actually had the wind knocked out of me— I don’t recall ever sensing such evil in my life! Perhaps noticing my distress, the construct decided to attack and hit me so hard I thought its fist had gone through my torso. I dropped the ring in Tomas’ hands as I staggered back to heal myself; he attempted to get its attention while Alayi tried to pull the well cover back over; Defender waded in and just started pummeling the other construct. When I felt I could stand, I attempted to smite the thing (and didn’t hit Defender this time!), and then cast fire at it. This helped wear it down, but I think Defender’s strength is what really did the evil thing in. After it crumbled to the ground, a disc of adamantine was found in the debris; it had a ruby placed in the center, and a map of what looked like this clearing engraved on it.

With the demise of the golem, the evil aura was gone— and I didn’t sense any in the well. Alayi thought it should be closed while we rest anyway, and I agreed— I didn’t want to deal with any surprises for a few hours at least! Defender helped put the heavy stone cover on and then began repairs on himself while Alayi foraged for us. Tomas identified the ring we had attempted to use on the golem as a “Shield of Faith.” Too bad it hadn’t worked!

After a blissfully uneventful night, we pushed the stone cover off the well and Alayi put a rope down the opening, a magical torch suspended from the end. It revealed a floor about 40’ down. We all climbed down (with the exception of Fang) and found ourselves in a 30’ by 30’ chamber with three exits….

Posted by Kristin at 16:56 | Alunys’ Journal