Monday, October 9, 2017

Session 46: Hammer of the Gods

After we assembled the four gems we found in the dungeon we used them to open the locked door to the last room. As we entered a large chamber we spotted three figures in the center of the room. As we approached them we were spied by one of the fiends who yelled: "you are not with our master, you must die!"  Springing into action Flint cast a spell of silence on the area to prevent the fiends from casting their own spells. Catching the fiends off guard Flint also engaged them in a melee. One of the fiends who was less confused by his actions spread his wings and took flight above the area of silence, lobbing balls of fire at the group. Goblin, Lynna & Tywill all took turns attacking this villain as Flint deftly handled the two devils on the ground. Tywill bore the brunt of the attacks from the winged terror and nearly fell. The creature was no match for our combined efforts, however. Once we defeated the fiends the group discovered a magically locked case. Tywill was able to open the case and discovered inside a rare treasure indeed: the hammer of thunderbolts. Could this be a clue to where our quest is heading? Time will tell.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Session 45: The Broken Medallion

The companions continued their quest in the subterranean area to which they had teleported from the Sorcerer's tower. Remembering they had successfully shattered the vials in one of the hallways off the first room, they hoped the night's rest had given whatever the result was time enough to disperse. Passing through, they came upon a room with a blue river running through and multiple deep blue pools. The room also had a strong anti-magic aura. On the far wall, there was a doorway with an indentation. Worried about poison, Flint leapt over the river, and inspected the door. There was also an insignia of a familiar looking ruby stave they had found earlier in the tower. Flint looked in the last pool and saw something glimmering that might have been part of the pendant. He used the stave to fish it out, thus not risking whatever might have been in the water.

Backtracking, they found a hallway filled with a strong poison gas. Remembering that Tywil was now immune to poison, he entered and looking around, retrieved a second part of what appeared to be a 4 piece medalion (a triangle surrounded with three annuli to form a full circle. Further down the hall, there was a split. To one side, a quick bit of silent spying revealed 9 large statues surrounding a pedestal with perhaps another pedestal piece. Tywil chose to use his boots of spider climb to mount the ceiling in the hallway and walk across the ceiling to above the pedestal. Doing so awakened one of the statues who looked at him and began approaching the pedestal. Thinking quickly, he dropped to the pedestal, grabbed the pendant piece and used his boots to leap up to the ceiling before the golem could reach him. The construct, confused, continued to stare at the pedestal as Tywil made his way back to the hall. Some force appeared to keep the great contraptions from following the party in to the hall.

The other hallway was on all sides with mirrors. Additionally, when Flint looked at the ceiling, he felt as if something was trying to rip his soul from his body. The door had an indentation that looked like a pendant should be inserted there. The group backtracked, eyes glued to the ground.
A bit more exploring revealed a secret door leading to a bad hallway where the walls and ceiling were covered with red fungi. Attempting to sneak through, Tywil found a doorway on the far side, perhaps 50 feet away. On the way back to report, he slipped, and the small noise he made apparently caused the fungi to emit spores, causing him to go mad. Goblin pulled him out with his staff of entanglement, and Flint was able to cast a spell to help him recover his wits. When the screaming stopped, so did the spores.

Trying again, Lynnya crept down the bad hallway with red fungi. Unluckier still, she immediately triggered the defenses and frankly went completely gibberingly insane. Not even a light restoration would calm her. Regrouping after gagging her to stop the trap, the group slept an uneasy sleep, and Flint prayed for the ability to completely restore her insanity.
Finally realizing the correct course of action, Flint cast silence on the hall.
On the far side of the hall, past the door, the party faced a tribulation (by combat?)
In the room, after looking around, there was a pit, covered tautly with leather.
Quietly, Flint asked Goblin to tie him up and lower him into the pit, where he found another piece of the pendant. Restored, the group decided to go back to the mirrored hallway to use the pendant. To avoid the effect of the ceiling, this time Flint broke the soul sucking mirror above.
Out from the mirror fell, a ghast, a black pudding, and 2 wizards, one of whom appeared to be fighting the rest. Quickly casting silence on the group, Flint and company made short work of them all, including the potentially innocent wizard.
Repairing the medallion was easy work for a craftsman of Flint's caliber, and they used it to open the door at the far end of the mirrored hall.

Within, there was a portal similar to the one leading back to the tower, and with a minimum of conversation, the party began killing summoned creatures from portal who must be susceptible to protection from spells.
The battle continues in earnest...

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Session 44: The Sorcerer's Catacombs

Image result for persian lion monster

As we stared into the eyes of the Erinyes we realized we had lost our advantage. Luck was on our side, however, and we were able to defeat the Erinyes without suffering too much from her attacks.  We may have had tougher fights but this could have gone better if we had been smarter. While we were still under the effects of battle magic we decided to enter the final room of the tower. As we entered through a door in the ceiling we expected an ambush and were surprised to find an empty room. Flint realized that there must be an exit from the tower in the room so he and Tywill swept the room. Tywill did find a door but, fearing a trap, the group left Tywill to work by himself. Tywill was not able to crack the lock and couldn't understand if it were a mechanism or magic. He called the group for assistance and Goblin was able to dispel the magic on the lock with a prayer, revealing a blinding light leading to a portal. We knew that the main entrance to the tower would kill us if we breathed in the poison so we passed through the portal.

It transported us to a room Flint identified as a subterranean vault. We found two doors there that had stone lion statues stationed in front of them. Flint decided it was his turn to examine the door and locks. Surprisingly the door opened without any difficulty but sadly this was a trap. Inside the room was a flying magical sword but our biggest fears were realized when the statues came to life and attacked. We defeated both sword and statues but the battle took its toll. We agreed that we could remain in the room with the once flying magical sword for a short rest. We licked our wounds and recouped our strength. Our respite was short lived as the next encounter against chain devils nearly killed poor Volodemir. Flint and Goblin bore the brunt of the attacks after Volodemer went down while the group retaliated from range. Where do devils go once defeated on the mortal plane? We would hopefully never know. [Ed. - Back to hell, of course!] We did know that we could not survive another battle without a proper rest. Heading back to the tower of the Erinyes we were lucky enough to not run into any one and were able to pass through the magical barrier to safety once more.
What comes next as we head back through the portal?

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Of Hades

What happens in Arden Est when you die? For a few particularly noble souls, the weight of their sins in less than the weight of their souls, and Maat or her servants escort them to heaven. But most were not as virtuous. Most souls go south when they die, to the river Styx, which winds its way down into the earth like a worm. Especially wicked souls might miss the landing, and continue into the abyss. But most find themselves beached on a gray shore deep below the surface, facing the gate that leads into the realms of Hades. This gate is guarded by Cerebus, hound of hell and progenitor of the kobold race.

Hades was one of the three great primordials charged by God to help him order the world. He organized a realm for the winnowing of souls. When each soul arrives at the gates of hell, the devil Abaddon judges them. The most wicked are condemned to hell until the end of the age, to serve the devils, but most are assigned a region in hell. Here through penance the soul can atone for its misdeeds, and proceed on to heaven.

The devils are a varied race. They have two main roles -- to give penance to the souls in hell, and to test the souls on Arden Est, allegedly to allow them the opportunity to prove their goodness. But most devils love their task more than they should, and seek to entice mortals into wicked deeds to increase the ranks of their slaves. Still, they remember the deal they made with God at the beginning of the world, and do not break the letter of the contract.

There is one more task Hades has undertaken: it is he who guards the prison of Hadeth. He is almost omnipotent in his own realm, as much as this frustrates Asmodeus, and so is capable of keeping one of the Valharim in check. Yet it is said that one day she shall escape...

Friday, August 25, 2017

Session 43: Sorcerer's Citadel

During the downtime, the Abolitionists heard rumors around town. The dwarves of Thunder Mountain found a wizard's tower while they were clearing the island of monsters. Some bandits were operating out of the Dimwash Mire, just west of Roskilde, disrupting trade between the forest and the city. And, of particular relevance to Volodemir, a bag of monsters similar to the one he was looking for had been possessed by a ranger living in the forest, but hasn't been heard of for a while. Some say he was killed by bandits. There was no word on Markessa's whereabouts. The party decided to visit the dwarves, and so they made their way to Thunder Mountain.

The trip to Thunder Mountain was uneventful, and the dwarves were happy to have the party take on the tower. They didn't know what was there, but it appeared to be heavily trap-ridden, "An' we all know how cunning wizard's be, aye?" Making their way along the coast as to make better time than in the hills [yay retcon], the party came across a shipwreck, and they decided to explore with Flint and Lynnya entered the hold where it had been staved in, and the rest of the party exploring the deck. There wasn't much of interest on the deck. The ship appeared to be of southern design, Lyonian or perhaps Solarian, and outfitted with mounted crossbows and ballistae.

Tywyll, who did a heroic amount of lockpicking, unlocked the door to the captain's room, and was nearly surprised when a wight, dressed in captain's clothes, jumped out at him. But with his quick wits, he was able to stab the undead fiend and withdraw behind Goblin, who made quick work of the monster. Below decks, Flint fared worse. He heard Volodemir yell when the wight attacked, and moved into the water so that he could climb a ladder to help. But when he hit the water, 8 lacedons emerged and moved to attack. Fortunately, most went to attack him, but 2 moved towards Lynnya. It was tough going at first, but Goblin and the others were able to make it down to help end the threat. In the water, they found a chest of gems, including a periapt of proof against poison.

Having looted the ship, the Abolitionists made their way to the sorcerer's citadel, seated on top of a tall hill. They ascertained that the exterior was made of a strange, unearthly material and there was only one way in -- a long smooth hallway with animal bones covering the first 40 feet. Flint walked in, and immediately felt a strange tingling in his feet, as if the hall was poisoning him. He kept going, trusting his dwarven constitution to keep him from harm. As he moved down the passage, he took a bit of damage, but nothing he couldn't handle. After 180 feet, he ran into an invisible wall, with bird skeletons scattered around the bottom of it. He felt around the wall, and found a door. He opened it, and instantly the tunnel was filled with noxious fumes. Flint ran back to the rest of the party, but was noticeably weakened by the experience. The party discussed how best to proceed, and decided that Volodemir would cast fly on himself, and levitate on Goblin, Tywyll, and Lynnya, pulling them along, while Flint would run quickly. They did so, and were successful at entering the tower.

The first level of the tower was a storage room, while the second was a finely appointed sitting chamber. On the third level they found some sort of alchemy lab. A secret compartment in one of the cabinets contained a safe, which Tywyll was able to disarm and unlock. Inside was some gold, a few potions, and a black talisman on an adamant chain. The next level was a bedroom, with blue lotus flowers in vases around the room. A woman was lying on the bed, and greeted the party with a sarcastic "Aren't you a little short to be adventurers?" to which the 7' tall Goblin shrugged. Before she could say anything else, Volodemir cast Tasha's Hideous Laughter, and before they could blink, Melissa was on the floor laughing for a straight minute. The party blinked at each other, not knowing what to do. One minute passed, and as the spell wore off, the pollen of the flowers took effect. Goblin became convinced Volodemir was a devil, and Tywyll collapsed in despair. After the first round, however, they managed to shake off the effects.

The Abolitionists have been in worse fights, but this is definitely a tough one, as the Erinyes focuses her attacks on the bard who attacked her first...

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Session 42: The Rod of Seven Parts

The party moved deeper into the faerie lair, eventually making their way to a throne room, where a particularly malicious looking goblin in a wet, red cap mocked them. "Your blood will wet my cap!" he cried, as he went on the attack. But he was no match for the Abolitionists, and was swiftly killed. As they left the rooted cave, the entrance shimmered, and then vanished. Returning to Thornlet, she placed her hands on Volodemir's head, and prayed to Ryanna. Volodemir felt for a moment like there was a strange swelling in his head, and then he knew, somehow, that he could speak with blink dogs. "They will come when you call," Thornlet said, "But only call them when you are in dire need." She suggested that the party should head back to Darkshelf.

On the way back to Darkshelf, there was a deep ravine, crossed only by a rickety bridge. Suspicious, the party glanced around, and Lynnya saw spyder demons hiding in the bushes! Flint yelled at them, and they teleported away in fear. Moving closer, they saw that there was an old woman on the bridge, ranting and raving. When they went to help her, they saw she was offering them some sort of stick. When they took it, it turned out to be the smallest piece of the rod, marked with an "I". They escorted her back to Darkshelf, to leave her in the care of Kwon.

Kwon welcomed them back warmly, and told them he did not know much about the rod, except that this piece had healing properties. "Arquestan will know more," he said, "But he is gone, and I don't know when he'll be back." The party nodded, and inquired about the slaves they had rescued about a year ago. About half of them are still in the city, doing well, and about half they managed to send south to find their way back home. The party decided to rest for a few weeks, so that Flint had time to build another mechnotron.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Session 41: Return to Valdemar Woods

The party returned to the cave Thornlet told them about, where Boreas was trying to establish a forward base to strengthen his hold on the region. They may have lost last time, but they were stronger now after their defeat of Markessa's kobolds. The first cave had been refortified in their absence, but only with myconids, which posed no threat to the seasoned adventurers, though Goblin was befuddled by the spores for a moment. Further in, they came to a large, moss covered cavern, with a single Domovoi in the middle. As they moved to attack, the moss came alive to defend the faerie. Once this fight was won, they continued on deeper into the complex. Three tunnels led to different parts of the base, north, west, and east. The Abolitionists went north.

The next room appeared to have once been a garden, with a reflecting pool, now drained, in the middle. North, the party found goblin breeding pits, but none of those foul folk were to be seen. They turned east, and entered a bedchamber, guarded by a Domovoi and an Aridni, an evil pixie. This fight proved to be the most difficult so far, but the party overcame the threat. They then had to consider which exit to take -- the door to the northeast, or the passage south-east.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Session 40: Markessa Lives!

After a short rest, the party regrouped in a room with 3 exits. Moving straight ahead, they found themselves in a wide cavern with a bridge crossing it. Up and to the right, sharp eyed Tywill spotted a group of 10 kobolds waiting in ambush. Reacting quickly, Flint smote one with a guiding bolt, illuminating the rest. Lynnya unleashed the fury of nature on one with a hail of thorns that tears him to shreds along with 4 of his small comrades. Tywill climbs to the ceiling with his spider boots and bolts across the deep crevasse surprising one of the lieutenants with a backstab, only to be ganged up on by the remaining leaders. One of the kobolds knew enough magic to send scorching rays at Flint, which singed his whiskers. Goblin killed the caster with a radiant attack, and Volodemir and Lynnya finished the last few before they can act again.

Tywill explores the exit behind the ambush, while the rest of the party crosses the bridge, only to meet up again on the far side at an intersection in the tunnels. To the west, there is a large dark cave full of bubbling mud and a path of stepping stones across. Sensing danger, Tywill once again takes to the ceiling, and notices a sleeping kobold floating near the center of the cave. A few shots in the dark dispatch the would be ambusher. Not wanting to risk the safety of the rest of the party, Flint attempted to cross the stepping stones, bravely triggering the perilous trap. After falling in the thick mud, he was helped out of the mud, sputtering but unfazed, by Goblin with the help of his entangling rope.

Moving ahead, the party came to a room with a mural of Cerberus and about 20 prone bodies of kobolds seemingly sacrificed ritually. As they were feeling there way through the dark abattoir, four kobolds jumped out to ambush the party. Two were killed by Flint's spirit guardians and spiritual weapon before they could act. The leader fell victim to hideous laughter followed by an Eldritch Blast and sacred flames. Adreham's servant was further protected by the spirit guardians as they dispatched several remaining kobolds who were only pretending to be sacrifice victims but were in fact lying in wait.

Within this room there was a collapsed exit which sadly held the body of a dwarf of a local noble clan, cut down by kobolds but had apparently triggered a collapse to hold them off.  Some investigation showed him to be of a local noble family. Flint noted the identity and laid her body to rest at the site of her noble sacrifice.

Passing by the rubble, the party noted an ankle high rope connected to nothing, and stepped past it to avoid any traps. Half way up the slope in the following passage, the sound of a tumbling boulder gave way to the snickering of a group of 6 kobolds who thought they had set a cunning trap. The boulder bounced off of Flint, and the party did not flee, but after dispatching the kobolds, discerned the true purpose of the tripline they had passed.

After this, they came upon a large room with 5 colored pillars surrounding an altar, and 5 colored tapestries on the far wall. On the altar, a young blonde man stricken with agony tried to warn the party to leave, just as his heart was replaced with a stone and he transformed into a demon. Accompanied by an invisible tormentor, the demon did battle with the party, at times breathing fire upon them. Tywill found his way past the circle of pillars, which appeared to deal elemental damage according to color, and disengaged the acid trap from the black pillar. After some more hideous laughter and a long fight involving many missed attacks, the demon was dispatched, and after some more blind lunging about, it was determined that Markessa had escaped for now.

Some thorough searching after disabling the pillars found some treasure. Perhaps this was an altar to Tiamat, the many headed dragon goddess? The party took a moment to regroup and decide what to do next...

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Arden Est's Planar Cosmology

Arden Est lies at the center of the universe, and all other realities revolve around it. It is known. Arden Est is a flat disk, at the center of which lies a great lake of lava with a whirlpool in the middle. The dimensions of the Land are unknown -- some sages have speculated that there lie lands beyond the Last Sea, but these have not been seen. Underneath Arden Est lies the Underdark, a land hundreds of times more vast than the surface world. Here are countless tunnels and caverns and the civilization of the drow. Here too winds the river Styx, leading to the realms of Hades, and the river Lethe, leading to the Hells the devils conquered from the Lord of Death. Further down, mad titans delve more tunnels and angels and devils both beat back attacks of demons seeking to free their mistress from Hades's prison. Even further below lies the elemental chaos.

The elemental chaos is divided into six semi-distinct areas. The planes of fire, water, air, and earth blend together at their edges and at their borders with the positive energy plane above and the negative energy plane below. At the center, all of the elements combine in a maelstrom of primal energy, and at the very midpoint, a whirlpool stands, leading the way down into the Abyss. The abyss, it is said, has no bottom. But it is also said that Fayon made his infamous bargain with Tiamat at the bottom of the abyss, so who can know the truth of these things.

Above Arden Est are the heavens. On the moon sits Fiat Lux, home of the Valharim. The moon rotates, shining most when Fiat Lux lies directly overhead, and not at all when the fairest city looks the other way. The sun makes a circuit around Arden Est's disk, renewing her energy from the positive elemental plane each night. Beyond the sun are other worlds, such as the platinum sphere of Bahamut and the copper sphere of Ares.

Two planes exist coterminous with Arden Est. Faerie is the cumulation of the hopes and dreams of the people of Arden Est. Here the Courts of Winter and Summer war with each other, causing the seasons to change as Koschei is first ascendant followed by Titania before Koschei takes the crown again. The fears and dark urges of the free folk, on the other hand, create the realm of nightmare, also called the ethereal. The edges are largely safe, but horrors lurk in the depths.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Session 39: Kobold Kapital

The party continued their exploration of the mines under the Tower of Bells. While resting Marcus the warlock comes through (or kicked out) of a portal he claims was from the Land of Faeries to rejoin the party, cheerfully asking what they have been up to, and if they speak blink dog yet. The party immediately sees a use for the sometimes slow (but not mentally handicapped) warlock and have him go back to the frightening looking black device in the other room inscribed with runes. Casting comprehend language Marcus is able to tell them is says that "he who opens this will be damned as is the demon trapped inside." The group decide to leave the demon trapped and move forward in the mines.

They quickly come across a kobold and an evil looking imp creature, Marcus thinks it is a quasit, meaning the kobold has a demon familiar. This is quickly confirmed when the kobold himself transforms into a demon. The party begins an attack, Flint is grabbed by the demon, but quickly drinks a potion of enlargement to break free. Marcus attempts to slow the demon, but it resists the spell and goes on pummeling members of the party, the next to get grabbed is the rogue, Tywill who had been backstabbing him. The party further their attack until the demon is slain, saving Tywill and collecting a map that the demon had on him. The map leads to the kobold headquarters.

The party quickly patch themselves up and go on their way to the kobold stronghold. Outside they see rows of Viking heads put on spikes. Undeterred they walk up to the guard kobolds and ask to see their master. The kobolds are pretty skeptical of the party and despite the amazing charisma tell them to stay put while they inform their master of the groups arrival. Despite trying to talk their way in, the group quickly abandons peaceful solutions and sleeps some of the kobolds and slays the rest as to not ruin their surprise on the other kobolds.

The party moved inside, with Tywill scouting ahead, he finds a trap in the hallway, disabling it for everyone else and moves into a large cave with a guard tower in the middle. Immediately he is set upon by a band of kobolds. The rest of the group runs ahead to catch up, with Flint falling into a pitfall trap that had been undetected. After pulling him out the party engage the kobolds and after a bit of effort chasing down stragglers, they defeat the kobolds and begin to look around to get their bearings.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Session 38: Kwaint Kobold Kennels

After emerging from the underground lake, the party walked up one of the side paths to a room dominated by a large pool. Flint's sharp eyes noticed a shimmering in the water, which on closer observation turned out to be a gelatinous cube. Several rounds from his wand of magic missiles took care of that creature, and he dove into the water to see if it led anywhere. The silvery walls of the tunnel led to a new room, and so he went to bring the rest of the party along. Goblin in his heavy armor had some difficulty traversing the waterway, but was able to hold his breath long enough to make it to the other side.

In this room, 6 dwarves and 22 kobolds were mining a wall at the far end of the chamber. Their attention was focused on a strange black mineral deposit, but as the Abolitionists filed into the room, their attention turned to the party. But they were quickly turned to ashes. The zombies, meanwhile, had continued to mine, but were quickly put to rest. Upon examination, the black mineral deposit turned out to be the same material they had seen earlier, where it was in a cylindrical shape with a hatch -- this appeared to possibly be one end of the object. But, not having anything useful to do with it at the moment, the party explored the caves further. They eventually came across the entrance to a warren, with side passages leading to three obviously trapped rooms.

The main passageway led them to a guard chamber, where some elite kobolds awaited them. As always, they were no threat to the party. After wiping them out, the party decided to retreat back to an easily defensible room to recover their resources for what must be the central chamber of this complex.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Session 37: The Kobold Gem Mines

Making our way into a cave, we came upon a great hall that appeared to be of Dwarven craftsmanship, wherein lay a number of piles of rubble, most likely leavings from whatever mining operation the Dwarves had undertaken before they had been beset. In the distance, we could hear the faint scrape of metal against metal. Flint suggested it may be the sound of mining carts on metal track. After a quick examination of the rubble, we discovered a trap door in the floor with a steep slope leading downward.

Following the shaft, we found ourselves in a large, perfectly octagonal room hewn from the rock. There, at the eastern end of the room, a great forge lay. Flint explained that forges of this nature were typically used by Dwarven smiths to infuse their crafts with magic, normally through empowered elemental gems set into the sides of the forge. In this case, however, it appeared that some thief had pried the gems loose. The thieves didn’t seem to get far however as there were two scorched skeletons lying near the forge with six rubies strewn about them.

Striding forward to investigate, Flint was suddenly engulfed in the fury of a fire elemental, presumably freed from the rubies when the thieves pried them loose. If not for his Ring of Fire Resistance, the dwarf would surely have perished under the elemental’s anger. Nonplussed, the dwarf summoned a hammer of faith and called upon a spiritual guardian to aid him. As flashes of holy light burst from the ethereal hammer, the rest of us lashed out with arrows, bolts, and spells to send the creature back to its fiery plane. The elemental was clever, however, and surrounded Flint, hoping to prevent us attacking for fear of harming the dwarf. Luckily, the creature found one of my spells particularly amusing, allowing Flint to maneuver outside the elemental’s corona. With another flash of holy light, the creature was banished to its plane.

Having dispatched the elemental, we gathered the gems and explored the two passages leading from the octagonal room. We discovered they led to either side of a large subterranean lake. One led to a room containing a cylindrical object, with a wheel that looked like it would open up the tube. A rickety raft lay nearby in the other room but, looking at it dubiously, the goliath called upon his god to grant us the ability to traverse the lake as if it were solid ground. As we crossed, a black mass of goo rose up from the lake ominously. The amorphous creature, no doubt attracted by our footsteps, hungrily attacked us. The rogue, Tywill, struck the thing with his straight sword and caused it to rift, splitting it in two. Much to our horror, the two halves surged forward independent of one another. The rogue had only managed to double our enemies. One of them then surged forward, trying to envelope the rogue in its acidic touch. While Lynnya and Tywill, fearful of increasing our foes, ran to shore, the two clerics and I combined our magic to burn away and disrupt the ooze. We quickly joined Lynnya and Tywill on shore in case our battle stirred more of the creatures.

On shore, found several tunnels that had been hidden by the darkness of the cavern. Following one shaft inside, were all at once beset by three kobolds with their hunting dog. We managed to get the drop on them. Though it pained me to do so, I was forced to injure the poor canine in my efforts to destroy the kobolds. Weakened by my thunderous spell, the kobolds were quickly dispatched. Luckily, Flint was able to heal the dog. The dog, who he has named Petey, has taken a liking to him. I’m certain little Petya will enjoy living with us a great deal more than the kobolds.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Session 36: Medusa Cuckoo

Upon reaching the summit of the cliff, we surveyed our surroundings and spotted a small tower rising out of the forest below. After a quick search, we found an old trail leading into the forest. The tower appeared to rise from the rock almost organically for there were no visible doors to be found. Following this trail further led us to what appeared to be an old, dilapidated villa. With the tower looming nearby, we surmised that there may be a passage leading to the tower within.
Approaching the gate house, we noted a number of lifelike statues of dwarves littering the area. The status were of incredible detail and might have been true works of art had not the expressions of the dwarves conveyed such horror. Tables had been overturned to form a barrier but appeared to have had little effect in halting whatever force had overrun the manor. Moving further in, the manor was largely empty and appeared to have been ransacked of any of its valuables.

Eventually in our searching, we discovered a passage leading down into the earth beneath the manor. There we found ourselves in a large antechamber whose primary feature was a titanic column in the center. As we surveyed the antechamber, we were ambushed by the slings of four kobolds who had hidden at the top of the column. We weathered their first volley of stones and then took action while the little ingrates reloaded. In a flash, Lynnya and I teleported to the top of the column through a gate of magic. Meanwhile, the rogue, Tywil, made his own magical relocation, disappearing in a puff of mist and appearing in the midst of the kobolds an instant later. The goliath, being half the height of the column to begin with, merely climbed up to join us. Startled as they were by our sudden appearance, the kobolds fell quickly to arrow, spell, and sword as they fumbled with their slings.

The battle ended, we now saw how the kobolds were able to sneak upon us. A spiral staircase rested atop the column and led upward, seemingly into the tower. Mounting the stairs, we found they indeed rose up into the tower. We only found one chamber, all the way at the top of the tower. It was a semi-circular chamber with a wall cutting through what would have been the center of the circle. Upon this wall, there was a great clock face looming ominously over us.

Just then, the clock struck midnight and began to chime. As part of the clock’s display, a small door opened twenty feet above where we stood. Expecting a small animatronic dwarf, as is customary within their craftsmanship, we were instead horrified to see a medusa step through the door. Suddenly, the dwarven statues near the gate house made much sense. I felt the lethargy of the medusa’s gaze grip my body just as I was able to look away. Thinking quickly, I unstoppered the Eversmoking Bottle Flint had given me (and he thought I would never find a use for it!) and the room quickly filled with a quick smoke, obscuring the medusa. Tywil leapt up to the platform where the medusa stood to engage her directly but was nearly brought low by the short sword she wielded and the poison of her writhing, serpentine hair. While the rogue fought her directly, Lynnya, Goblin, and I engaged her with spell and arrow. Certainly, the smoke filling the chamber made the battle more difficult but it protected us from the medusa’s deadly gaze. The odds against her, the medusa retreated back through the door which closed tightly behind her. We refused to be deterred, however. Mustering his strength, the goliath moved the hands of the clock to the top of the hour, causing the chimes to thunder through the tower and thrust the startled medusa back into the room where we quickly made short work of her.

Following the battle, we searched through her chambers behind the wall and found a small chest with an array of treasures, including a magic ring of protection. We then rested, anticipating the battle against whatever foul force  was holding this kobold rabble together into an army.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Session 35: Alice in Chains

As we continued our search of the caves we entered a large chamber with a pool. Before we were able to check the room thoroughly we were set upon by a group of Kobolds. Unlike groups we had encountered in the past these few were up for a fight, and they had magic to aid them. Through coordinated attacks we made short work of them. After the battle we took some time to examine the room properly. We saw a staircase leading out of the chamber but were more interested in a rough rock staircase on the other side of the pool. We could not reach this staircase without passing through a shark filled pool. Goblin suggested dumping the bodies of the Kobolds in the pool to feed and distract the sharks. This worked just long enough for us to cross the pool and continue up the rocky slope, where we arrived at a platform covered in mushrooms. Our stout dwarf friend thought it best to examine the area first as the mushrooms wouldn't affect him if they were toxic. As Flint entered the mushroom patch he was attacked by two myconids. Flint was able to hold off the creatures while the rest of us took turns striking from afar. After the fight was finished we all joined Flint on the mossy platform and Tywyll took the spoils - a pair of boots of spider climb. 

As we continued our climb upwards Flint stepped on a stair that was booby-trapped and fell down into the shark pool. Goblin came to his aid with a water walk spell and Flint rose out of the waters before the sharks came after him. Goblin and Tywyll anchored themselves on the next platform and dropped a rope for the rest of us to climb up. Flint, annoyed that he had fallen for the booby trap, left it to the rest of us to search the area. We found a door and, though we didn't hear anything from inside, we decide it best to not leave our backs open to unexpected assault. We entered the room and found a human waiting for us (according to him). He tried to convince us of his desire to punish those that try to stop others from achieving their desires, even if those desires are to enslave others. Eventually Flint had enough of this blasphemy and attacked. Much to our surprise this creature defended itself with chains. Flint and Goblin knew then that this was a devil and needed to be destroyed. The gods favored us and we were able to dispatch our foe without any of our group getting hurt. Examining the rest of the rooms on this platform we found three humans who claimed to be buying supplies. Goblin was eager to kill them if those supplies turned out to be slaves. Eventually we let them go and they went down the stairs. If they lied to us the Gods would punish them and let them fall into the pool of sharks. The final doorway we came to led out of the caves and we decided it was time to take a rest and recoup our strength. 

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Session 34: Up the Wall

Image result for stairs in rock faceThe Liberators spent the night at Falcon Keep, and in the morning, received the maps they needed from the knights. They showed the escarpment running along the south-west side of the territory controlled by the kobolds, and where the path up the mountain lay. After two uneventful days of travel, they found themselves at the foot of a cliff, looking up. It looked possible to scale, but they decided that it would be safer to climb the stairs that had been carved into the cliff's face.

They proceeded cautiously, and when they were just two flights up, Flint discovered a secret door. It led inside of the wall, curving around to a carved hallway. One of the doors turned out to be a jail, in which were interred two hill giants. They were no trouble for the party, and they continued on to a larger room with a long ladder in the back. It was guarded by kobolds, and a spiritual weapon helped them see the error of their ways. At the top of the ladder, another party of kobolds was waiting, but twin spirit guardians proved to be too much for them. After that, the Liberators took a breather to prepare themselves for the second half of the ascent.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Session 33: Spyders and Hags

Image by Unded
After recovering our strength and nursing our bruised and battered egos we decided it was time to complete the second of our three tasks. We decided to take the spider house to make better time through the countryside. On our journey we ran into the knights of the local keep riding their bear mounts. We brought them up to speed and asked what brought them to this area of the forest. They told us of the witch they were hunting and of the mischief she was creating. We figured this was the same witch whose house we were using for transport so we decided to help our allies. Flint surmised that the best location to find the witch would be where we first came across the spider house. We returned to the ridge where we were immediately set upon by the witch. Rather than fighting us directly she cast a summoning spell and brought forth three demon spiders to battle for her. The knights took on two of the spiders, leaving just one for our group to dispatch. Luck was on our side, or so we thought. Just as we felt the battle was won the demon summoned six more spiders to its aid. Though not as large they proved no less dangerous. First Goblin and then the rest of our group were bitten and paralyzed by their poison. Fortunately they were less powerful than their master so we were able to shake off the effect pretty quickly. Through our combined efforts we were able to take out a number of the smaller demon spiders and then concentrate our attacks on the true monster. After a lengthy battle the demon was killed and sent it back to its own dimension. Once the largest was dead, the smaller ones disappeared as well. We had destroyed these demons but were still on alert in case the witch returned. We were all too spent to engage in yet another battle. We took time for a brief rest before returning to our original quest.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Session 32: Caverns of Boreas

Once again unemployed and hoping for a way to speak with blink dogs, the band took up Thornlet's advice and tried to clear out a horrific feyhole the north wind was using to try and establish a base.
Finding some rough-hewn stairs leading out of a tree, Flint was immediately suspicious. Stalwart as ever, he barreled in, only to notice two horrible Quicklings. Luckily he dispatched one with extreme prejudice via divine might. The second quicklinged its way up and stabbed him in his ribs, shoulder, and kidney in a split second.

About the same time, a monstrous Domovoi emerged from beneath the threshold, behind him.
Well and truly screwed, Flint hoped his companions could drop at least one of the two so Adreham could guide his hammer home on the other.

Lynnya was also briefly downed by one of the Quicklings, but Volodemir remedied the situation rapidly. That fight ended in some way. The haze of battle makes it hard to recall. Flint was good enough to delve deeper, thinking the worst was over.

Girl, it was not. Don't stumble in to a storeroom with a roughspun cot against the wall and assume you're good. A flippin' Blemmys jumped out of nowhere and pummeled the shit out of Flint as he protected his less blessed companions with some divine guardianship.

The group did their usual pummel/magic/shoot business on the awful beast for a while, but eventually Flint found his head potato rattled against his brain box and couldn't move. This was a real first. To be followed shortly by another first. Being swallowed whole by a Blemmys. Without many options, Flint chugged his emergency major healing potion and hoped for the best from his companions. Just as he was about to open his ever-smoking bottle just to see what would happen, Goblin struck down the beast and Flint started acting like being eaten and digested wasn't the scariest thing that had ever happened to him. In unrelated news, he advocated for a retreat, to see what Thornlet Thistlekin had actually known about what she had sent the Abolitionists in to in the first place.

Gotta find some sort of ring of stomach acid resistance...

Friday, May 12, 2017

Session 31: Falcon Keep and Winter Wolves

The next morning, Flint prayed to Adreham that he would heal the gypsy child, so that they might see the benefits of civilization, so one day they might come to settle down. The gypsy child was healed, and so the Abolitionists climbed into their spider vehicle, Volodemir following behind on his otter.

After about a day of wandering, they came across a battered keep, with a pennant bearing a black falcon on gold. They asked for entrance and a place to sleep, and after verifying that they were not evil, the knights let them in. The castle was rundown, but still sturdy, and Volodemir marveled at the stable of bears the knights kept as mounts. They had an excellent meal in the dining hall where, despite the thick accent of the knights, they were able to learn the location of the priestess of Ryanna. They discussed the problem of the kobolds, with the knights indicating there had been some minor skirmishes, but no real contact.

 The next morning, they set out to the west, and near nightfall came across the small cottage that housed the hermit, Thornlet Thistlekin. She was blunt and abrasive, but allowed the party to stay the next morning. The next morning, she told them "I know why yer here. But you gotta prove yerselfs first. Three quests. There's a pack of werewolves laired in the woods. If you take them out, I'll tell ya the next one." Needing to learn the language of the blink dogs, the party set out towards where Thornlet had indicated the werewolves had their lair. Before going there, the party returned to Falcon Keep to buy silver arrows to aid them against the werewolves.

On the way there, the party was astonished when Flint tripped over his own shoelaces. They heard laughing in the bushes, and went to investigate. There was a small purple dragon! Flint reached for his warhammer as it hummed angrily, but Volodemir told him to leave it alone. It was a faerie dragon which, while puckish, were generally friendly creatures. They were able to befriend him, and he offered to help distract the werewolves.

So, while the party snuck up on one side of the werewolf camp, the faerie dragon created a huge light show on the other side. It worked, and the werewolves were quickly decimated, not least by means of Lynnya's silver arrows. They turned to head back to Thornlet's cottage. The way back was not uneventful, however, as they were ambushed by three winter wolves! The Abolitionists nearly succumbed to the cold breath of the wolves, but survived, and were able to defeat them. On returning to Thornlet's cottage, she told them that they were servants of Boreas, the north wind, and it was probably related to the next question she had for them...

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Session 30: The Blood Hag

After saving the cursed centaur from killing himself and convincing him to help us, we continued on our quest to save the pregnant woman and child. Approaching a ravine we saw on the other side of the water several child size coffins. Knowing that time was of the essence we left the area without investigating this strange site. Sadly, the gods took issue with this and we were set upon by small wooden constructs. In all my years I have never seen their like and the effect they had on my comrades took us all by surprise. Poor Volodomir became so full of himself I thought it may take a mountain to crush his ego. Lynne was stuck with the complete opposite affliction, overcome by sloth. Luckily we were able to destroy these creatures and their magic had no long lasting effect. Undaunted we pushed on.

Eventually we came upon a house that looked like a huge spider hanging over the ravine. Flint attempted to climb down to the spider house but lost his balance and landed in the fast moving river below. With the use of his magical rope Goblin was able to rescue Flint and get him to the spider house safely. Searching the house turned up nothing but a strange chest. The odd device was larger on the inside than it appeared as poor Volodomir soon found out. As he stuck his hand inside the chest, searching for a vase to help us save the women and child, the magical box swallowed him. We looked to the Imp to help us free Volodomir but this creature was of no use. Thankfully the quick thinking of Flint saved the day and together we were able to stop Volodomir from suffocating -- it took eight arms to make anything inside the chest solid. After finding the vase we knew it was time to return.

At this point the Imp proved its usefulness, telling us that this house was indeed a spider like structure we could use as a transport to cover more ground. We must have been quite the sight for anyone wandering by. Arriving at the inn we gave the vase to the gypsies but thought it best to wait outside as the exorcism was performed. Waiting, we prayed for salvation but planned for damnation. Sadly, events went as we assumed they would and after the screams stopped we entered the bedroom. Once in the room we saw all of the gypsies dead and a ghastly hag covered in blood. Through our combined efforts we were able to defeat her but not without severe cost to Flint. With time his face will heal but we were blessed that no soul was lost to damnation that day.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Session 29: The Gall Crone

The party had just defeated the decidedly non-vegetarian werebats, including their leader, El Aviador, taking some heavy damage and expending a lot of resources in the process. The party took some time to search their lair, finding a nice tiara for Volodemir in the process. Alarmingly, they also felt a sickly feeling as the castle began to fall from the sky as whatever arcane power held it aloft wore off. Wasting only a little time, the party bolted for the rope they had used to ascend, with Lynnya leading the way. They all climbed down the now sagging silk ropes as the castle and rock below plunged into the water. They then kept running to avoid the inevitably large splash it produced. Standing clear, they saw the entire structure sink into the lake below.

The party next rested up for a little to pray to remove the curse from Flint to avoid dealing with any unexpected consequences of the werebat bites he suffered, then made back for the inn in the forest. After checking on the horses, the exhausted party went to bed for a well deserved rest. On waking, however, the inn seemed a bit creepier than before. Dark rain fell outside to intermittent thunder. The innkeeper was in denial, however, claiming that the lighting of black candles and setting of knives point up were merely local customs. Hearing screaming and seeing a woman coming by with bloody towels sealed the deal for the party to intervene, however.

Upstairs, they found a woman in a birthing bed, but where a pregnant belly would be, instead there was a large parasitic gall. She said her name was Jedza, and claimed that there was a demon within her that would surely swallow her soul when it emerged and begged us to help her by retrieving a special jug from her sister nearby. Flint recalled the bizarre wizard creation that is a magic jar and asked the woman how having one would help her now. She said she was far more concerned with her soul being devoured than her body destroyed. Tucking that info away for now and hopefully remembering to warn his comrades about the danger this plan entailed later, Flint held his peace. He would research whether protection from evil would suffice as a defense/deterrent later.

A gall
 She claimed that some other gypsies had been sent for it but had not returned. Another woman was nursing a sick child, and claimed that they wanted the woman to survive so she could cure the babe. A little disturbed by all the demonry and unlicensed and decidedly secular medical practice, Flint decided to cast a spell to cure the cut on the woman's abdomen, and provide a potion of keoghtosis to the babe. As a precaution, he left behind an additional one for the demon hostess, to prolong her survival if the party were delayed.

In order to get to the sister's house, they were warned that a magical seal would not let them pass without the woman's imp familiar by their side as the party was not family. The dying woman produced a cage from the innkeep's wooden leg and handed it to Goblin.

After some debate, the party hurried off to find the sister to retrieve the jar to store the woman's soul while they would do what needed to be done with the demon and her body. In the woods along the way, they found a man dressed in gypsy clothes clinging to some vines and badly injured. Assuming he was being pulled into a bog or quicksand, they went around and pulled him to safety. He confirmed that he had been sent on the same errand and was attacked by some horrible lizards. He was confident that he could make it back to the inn unharmed and set off to return.

Not long after, the party came across a centaur graveyard and some unruly centaur skeletons attacked. The party dispatched them with a combination of bludgeoning and magic and kept going towards the location of the sister's home. Along the way, they met a suicidal centaur with some form of body dysmorphic disorder. They managed to talk the creature out of suicide and attempted to enlist its help on the mission at hand. Hopefully within a few hours, the jar will be in the hands of the party and a plan will be hatched for how to deal with the demon and its hostess. [Surely, nothing else will happen to complicate things! -ed.]

Monday, April 10, 2017

Session 28: It'll drive you batty

Bats are curious and magical creatures. Despite their cute and fluffy appearance, they carry many diseases and are much less fun to play with than they appear. As night fell at the inn, we resolved to set a trap for whatever corrupt force plagued our friend Bickle. I dressed myself as Mickle and rode out into the darkness on horseback while the others trailed behind in secret. Otters are very protective of their friends so, naturally, Dmitry was resistant to trailing behind with the others but, with a perturbed chitter, he agreed.

Everything seemed quiet at first but then, as a cloud obscured the moon, I heard a high pitched shrieking and a loud flapping sound swooping down toward me. I narrowly dodged to the side as two were-man-bat monsters tried to grab me. I quickly found my voice and screamed for the others to spring their attack while the were-man-bats hovered overhead. I then conjured a cloud of choking vapors amidst the creatures. While one of them managed to keep its focus, the other was taken by the vapors and, retching and convulsing, plummeted to the ground. While Lynnya loosed arrows at the flying were-man-bat, to reduced effect, Flint charged forward to attack the grounded monster. As Goblin unleashed magical fire, our new friend Marcus unexpectedly brandished a giant weasel from a small pouch and tossed it at the grounded were-man-bat.

So distracted was I by the sudden appearance of the giant weasel that I was taken unawares when the flying were-man-bat caught me in its talons and prepared to wing me to certain doom. Rallying, my friends mounted a vicious attack against the creature until I was able to thrust upward with all my might to end this threat. Meanwhile, Flint worked to destroy the other, which had since recovered from my spell. The creature, in a flutter of wings and fangs, managed to bite the dwarf, no doubt hoping to corrupt the cleric with its impurity but, due to his stalwart nature, he merely growled and bashed the monster to a pulp.

Bloodied but victorious, with Goblin hoisting the bodies of the were-man-bats on either shoulder, we returned to the inn. Upon our return, we found the corpses had shed their batty attributes and had become men. We questioned the innkeeper and other patrons on the identities of the two men thus revealed and were told they, though somewhat malformed, resembled a certain Erik and Ted.

Not seeing Pickle among the crowd in the inn, we decided to visit his room and inform that he was now safe. To our horror, we discovered the window had been smashed in and Bickle was nowhere to be found. We ran outside to scan the horizon to no avail. Luckily, several passersby informed us they had seen what looked like large birds flying to the northwest.

We gave chase, tracking the were-man-bats and our dear friend Mickle into the forest. After a hard day of travel, we came upon a clearing with a small lake at its center. To our astonishment, a keep, darkened and decrepit with age, hovered fifty feet above the waters. As if from thin air, a large raven appeared on Marcus’ shoulder. With a few words of instruction, the raven flew up to the keep to anchor a rope.

Flint was the first to begin the arduous climb up the rope. He was nearly at the top when a great cry sounded over the glade and its source, a giant eagle, plummeted toward the dwarf. Surprisingly nimble for a boulder with feet and hands, the dwarf managed to scramble the rest of the way up the rope, though not before sustaining a sizable wound from the attacking eagle. Meanwhile, the rest of us began our own climb (except Dmitry, who patrolled the lake). Flint summoned a hammer of light and faith to harass the eagle as we climbed, distracting the raptor from its prey. Though the climb was difficult, we were all able to reach the floating keep intact and, by the time we got there, the threat of the giant eagle was no more.

Making our way into the decrepit keep, we began searching for our friend Bickle. The guard towers, ruined and decaying, were empty so we made our way into the courtyard and the keep proper. We came upon a room where the floor and part of the wall had collapsed in, possibly as the keep was ripped from the ground. In the room below, there was a great pile of refuse and the half eaten remains of what used to be an ogre. Goblin carefully climbed down to the lower floor to see if there was anything salvageable within the remains. Unfortunately, his movements stirred the scavengers, hiding within the refuse, that had feasted upon the ogre and a pack of ghouls emerged.

No stranger to the cravings of the wretched undead, Goblin called upon his faith to castigate the creatures, causing three of them to cower, huddled in a corner of the room as far from the Goliath as possible. The damned hunger of the other two helped them overcome their fear and attack. A quick spell of thunderous potency obliterated the three cowering in the corner while an axe and arrows raining down from above felled the remainder.

Continuing our search for Pickle, we came upon the Great Hall of the ruined keep. There, seated at a large table, with flickering candles casting shadows over them ominously, were two more of the were-man-bat monsters. While one of them, with an air of gentility, plucked pieces of mango from a platter of fruit, the other sipped from a bowl of red, viscous liquid that I hoped was gazpacho but feared was not. To our surprise, the were-man-bat eating mango eloquently introduced himself as El Aviador, and his companion, Bob. They invited us to their table. While Marcus and I sat and chatted at the table, the two clerics quickly made for the kitchen, hoping for a sign of Mickle. Instead of Bickle, they found a human chef stirring a large kettle of boiling red liquid over a fire. He greeted them warmly and, seeing their discomfort with the kettle, assured them that it was only animal blood and, regrettably, claimed he had not seen any sign of Pickle’s whereabouts.

Goblin and Flint rejoined us at EL Aviador’s table where we briefly discussed the nature of were-man-bats. Eventually, the conversation turned to our dear missing friend, Mickle. Sympathetic, El Aviador gave us free reign of the keep to search for Bickle and sent Bob with us as guide. Our first stop was back at the kitchen where we questioned the cook once again. As conversation turned to the pantry, the room became tense. As we made for the pantry door, Bob and the chef attacked. Once again conjuring his magical weapon, Flint harassed Bob with it and then withdrew to meet El Aviador in the Great Hall who, hearing the commotion, was moving in to flank us. Meanwhile, I once again proved my comedic prowess and incapacitated the chef in fits of hilarity. Bob uttered the words of a spell and his fingers began to crackle with electricity. Just then, Marcus hissed a word of power and the corona of electricity Bob held suddenly winked out of existence. Marcus then threw the giant weasel at him for good measure. Out in the Great Hall, Flint fought El Aviador but the creature was a skilled combatant. Maneuvering through the dwarf’s defenses, the were-man-bat sank its fangs into the cleric. This time, the dwarf was not so lucky as he felt the creature’s plague wash over him.  The battle was fierce but, with perseverance, we were able to prevail and, at the end, three were-man-bats were no more.

Suspicious of their sudden tension at our interest in the pantry, we searched it and there, at last, found our friend Mickle. In conclusion, as I said in the beginning, bats are cute and fluffy but much less fun to play with than they would appear. They are best avoided if possible and never to be trusted if confronted.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Marcus the Red Warlock

Marcus was born a noble, but as a third son he was almost universally ignored. His education certainly is left wanting, and he often doesn't grasp exactly how everything works having himself never needing to know anything as he lounged his days away in his family's castle. Eventually however boredom gets the better of him and he starts asking questions of their fiefdom that people don't appreciate, and quite by accident he learns how his noble family has stayed in power by rather dark means, mainly worshiping Mephistopheles. His family brings him to Mephistopheles as an offering. Mephistopheles however sees a charming, rather athletic, and most importantly easily influenced mark and strikes a deal with him, form a pact and become a warlock and he will continue his support for his family. He gladly accepts, realizing the alternative would most likely be murder at his family's hands and tries to take his new found power and find a use for it. He is given an imp as a familiar to be his guiding 'conscience' and he goes out into the world for the first time.

Asmodeus and the Devils

When Hadeth rebelled, and was cast out of heaven, many of the powerful spirits joined her in her rebellion. These spirits had many different reasons -- Asmodeus thought that he could bring a stronger order out of the chaos she would create, one that had him as it's master. Dispater out of loyalty to the dark general. And Mephistopheles out of resentment of the new order that Fayon had created after his ascension. During the war, especially as it grew more desperate, Hadeth grew more crazed, seeking allies wherever she could find them -- most infamously, Miska the Wolf Spider. The devils grew more and more concerned, but they would do nothing. They had, after all, sworn her oaths. They served her loyally during the war, but once she was imprisoned in Hades, they did not believe serving her would bring any more gains. So under Asmodeus's leadership, they crafted realms in the underworld they called hells, and seek to increase their power by corrupting creation.

When they are not engaged in creating enormously complex plots of betrayal and counter-betrayal, the devils are trying to corrupt souls. The economy of hell runs on souls, but the only way devils can get souls is to convince a mortal to freely agree to give theirs up to them (typically, a soul is claimed by Hades upon death). Fortunately for the devils, men are greedy and short-sighted, and are often willing to make a deal. Asmodeus has proven adept at maintaining power despite many upheavals.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Session 27: The Otter-Tack of Senet

Last week the Abolitionists went back into the crypt to finally put to rest whatever was causing the undead infestation. They made their way past the pillar of salt that were the remains of a woman and into a room with multiple alcoves.

Mattock had been keeping to the shadows and once he entered the room he saw three ghostly shapes. Not wanting to waste his opportunity he took a shot at one of the apparitions dealing a bit of damage. Now alerted to their presence the specters turned their attention to the Abolitionists and a fight ensued.

One of the ghosts moved up and let out an unearthly yell to Mattock who had struck the banshee. This was enough to cause him to keel over in fright falling unconscious. As well as causing Volodemir, Gilyf, and Lynnya to flee in terror. Volodemir and Lynnya managed to regain their bearings and turn back to fight quickly so as not to leave Flint on his own. Gilyf however ran for quite sometime before finding his courage and turning back around.

Volodemir gave some healing words to Mattock while Flint summoned spirit guardians to help them defeat the ghosts. Mattock barely had time to stand when the undead let out another terrible scream, this time giving Mattock a fatal heart attack. Volodemir was able to recover and the group fought back against the banshees and specter, finally besting them.

Upon inspection of the crypt Volodemir found tack suitable for a giant otter, and the group made their way back to the inn to recover from the ordeal.

Inside the inn they encounter Marcus, a robed individual who seemed to be talking to himself. He smells ever so faintly of sulfur and happily introduced himself as a warlock currently without work. The Abolitionists were down a man and Marcus seemed charming, if not a little dull, and invited him along.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Session 26: Go West Young Man!

Following their defeat of the Fyrsnaca, the Abolitionists decided to go west in search of the priestess of Lyanna who could teach them the language of the Blink Dogs. Their first obstacle, however, was the large swamp just west of Roskilde. The first day of travel was uneventful, but on the second day, they came across a giant otter under attack by a small group of skeletons. The skeletons were easily dispersed, thanks to the power of Adreham, but it seemed the otter wanted to tell them something.
They followed the gestures and chirping of the giant otter, and there they found the trail the skeletons left. The trail led through the swamp to a small mausoleum. The mausoleum was empty, but stairs set between two sarcophagi led deeper into the darkness.

Flint walked fearlessly up to investigate the coffins, and was rewarded for his courage by a bite from a bone naga! The naga and its partner attacked, and a fierce fight ensued, but the Abolitionists were victorious. They then proceeded deeper into the grave, down a staircase labeled with a single word: SENET. At the bottom of the stairs, they found a few side rooms, including one containing the vestments for a priestess of Kilmar. In the main room of the tomb, there was a large sarcophagus, but the tomb was empty, guarded only by a pit trap. However, a couple of natural looking tunnels led deeper into the barrow.

In a large chamber to the left, they fought two spider demons, tougher than the ones they fought several months ago. In another chamber, this time to the right, two umber hulks awaited and were easily defeated. There was still, however, one path to explore, leading upwards into an area of finished stone, and at the base of the path, a stone pillar shaped like a woman screaming, running from that path.

Session 25: Defeating the Fyrsnaca

The records are lost as to the details of the defeat of the Fyrsnaca and the restoration of Thunderdelve to the Brakespear dwarves. It is said that the ancient spirit Chalcidar told the heroes of the secret's of the Heirstone, and they used its power to defeat the vile wyrm, sending whatever bandits had taken up residence in the fortress fleeing to the hills.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017


The Fyrsnaca is a wyrm native to the cold north, often found in the vicinity of hot springs and volcanoes, which it uses to reproduce. When it enters its reproductive cycle, every 100 years, it dives deep into the heat to lay a sac of eggs. It then stays with the eggs for 25 years until they hatch into the immature state of the Fyrsnaca, a clutch of red worms. During this period, the Fyrsnaca cannot survive outside of the heated water or lava, and it is quite irritable as it cannot hunt. Otherwise it is a fearsome predator, eating polar bear, seal, and whatever else it can get its teeth around. The Nords view the killing of a Fyrsnaca alone to be an exceptional deed, and often if there is a kingship crisis, at least one of the contenders will go Fyrsnaca hunting.

AC: 15 HP: 138 Speed: 60'
Str: +4 Dex: +1 Con: +5 Int: -1 Wis: 0 Cha: +1
Saves: Dex: +4 Con: +8 Cha: +4
Perception +3
Damage: Immune to natural fire, resists magical fire
CR: 8

Multiattack Bite/Crush
Bite +9, reach 10' 3d12+6 piercing
Crush +9 3d12+6 bludgeoning
Fire, 30' line, 5'. Recharge 5-6
11d8 fire damage, Dex(14) for half.

Originally printed in XS2: Thunderdelve Mountain, by William Carlson, (c) TSR (1985). This content produced under the Open Game License and may only be used under and in terms of that license. The license can be viewed here.

Open Game License v 1.0a Copyright 2000, Wizards of the Coast, LLC. System Reference Document 5.1 Copyright 2016, Wizards of the Coast, Inc.; Authors Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Chris Perkins, Rodney Thompson, Peter Lee, James Wyatt, Robert J. Schwalb, Bruce R. Cordell, Chris Sims, and Steve Townshend, based on original material by E. Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

The Singing Sword

It is well known that Alexander enjoyed singing while he explored, There is nothing he loved more than striding through the forests of the north, belting out a popular tavern song or a church hymn with equal vigor. What is less well known is that Kilmar, his frequent companion, was completely tone deaf. Alexander desired someone who could accompany him when they were traveling, so he created the Singing Sword.

The Singing Sword is a Longsword +1. When it is attuned to a character, that character can make the sword begin singing as a bonus action. While the sword is singing, the character has advantage on savings throws made against musical attacks and disadvantage on stealth rolls. She also gains +2 uses of bardic inspiration, if she is a bard.