TradelandsOfDurnatel

Rites and Resurrection
A Sojourn to Yartar
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The Second Siege
Demonstrating overwhelming force

Flamerule 16 – Day 34

The party, early in the morning, see the arrival of a magnificent carriage bearing the scarlet letter “M”, denoting some degree of royalty. Stepping from the carriage was a white, grey, and black colored tabaxi, clad in traveling leathers and wearing a shield, sword, and lute. This individual, introduced as Savattarius, was awkwardly interviewed by the party, and enthusiastically interviewed by Demic.

As this continued, Terken and Cyril departed to speak with Endrith Vallivoe. There, he explained that the forces of Rivergard were indeed increased. Multiple priests, nearly two dozen bandits and thugs, half a dozen bugbears, and worst – a Kraken Priest had taken up residence within the Keep. Endrith revealed that a Harper mage known as Trish had infiltrated the keep after the party’s first culling of the keep, for the day the party needed to do so again.

Meanwhile, Savattarius left to meet with his contacts, the Tarnlars. Inside, he met Helvur Tarnlar and Maegla Tarnlar, along with their children. Interested at first sight at the appearance of a Tabaxi, Helvur asked what he might be able to do for such a confident and distinguished person. On mention of Lords’ Alliance business, Helvur took Savattarius in the back.

Many accidental remarks about “Savamarius’s” coat of fur later, a 50 platinum fee was passed to Helvur, who seemed excited to explore how might he would best serve an agent of the House Mathias.

The group, returning together, set out as a whole to Rivergard Keep.

At noon, a flyby of what seemed to be Feathergale ‘Monks’ with wingsuits startled the adventurers. Hiding for a few minutes with no apparent follow-up from the Feathergale people, the group set out again.

Late at night, the group creep up within the nearby forest to the Rivergard Keep. Here, Demic and Cyril work together to deliver a psionically linked pellet of ammunition into the keep. With this clever insight, Demic and the party learns that the keep is indeed fortified, and the Kraken Priest appears to be exactly what was warned. Additionally, Demic learns the location of Trish – on the western wall.

Approaching, invisibly, Demic reaches out to Trish. Trish certainly sounds battle worn, or perhaps her speach just reflects the mental cadence of a spy. In either case, she cautiously proposes a meeting the following day.


Flamerule 17 – Day 35

The party set out to the stone tripod mentioned by Trish. Following Kaelith through the miles of forest, it became apparent that even with aid from the party, that the groups survival skills would ensure that they would arrive nearly half an hour late.

Sure enough, Trish was no-where to be seen. Minutes go by, as she eventually arrives, a young deer around her neck. She offers help best she is able, and together the party kill off a few thugs to get disguises. Trish accepts Kaelith’s poison, and a plan is hatched.

Everyone, except Kaelith (bound by the Watchful Knight), snuck into the Keep. At night, after the poison had severely hampered the cult, the adventurers struck out.

A huge fight against impossible (no, really, impossible) odds, the group finish off the majority of the cult – priests, thugs, bandits, bugbears….

The group begins looting, as Cyril steps away from the group to loot a separate room. Inside he finds the commoners. Suddenly, he is unable to move, as five commoners drop their sniveling guise. Five swings of blades later, Cyril is unconcious.

The party, caught unaware, step into the battle. A fireball from Demic renders the room scorched. Three innocent commoners incinerated, and Cyril again nearly dead a round later.

As the assassin steps into the room, he is engulfed by the true form of the diguised Fathomer – a snake of pure water. Bludgeoning damage threatening to end Kaelith, the party rallies once more to end the fight.

Bloody, and severely wounded, the group make minor efforts to bolster themselves before once more going into loot-mode. They return to the large-unlocked-chest-of-tons-of-stuff-in-the-unguarded-room, where, after emptying nearly half of it, a trap sprung.

Nearly 40 points of acid damage burst forth from the wooden box, spraying all over anyone nearby. Two party members are suddenly very close to unconsciousness. Two party members are suddenly very surprised.

One party member is suddenly very dead.

The surviving characters begin doing what they can. Healing potions, spells. The shock is apparent, “If only we had…” is on the tongue of all in the room.

…….

The Keep’s defenses lie in ruin, what defenders there were have fled.

The valuables that lie within the Keep still sleep in their boxes, pockets, and other hidey-holes.

The party must now decide – leave the Keep to revive Cyril and thus risk the rehabilitation of the Keep to the Cult of the Crushing Wave,

or

delve deeper into the Temple that resides below the Keep, while the cult is still reeling?

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Delivering Devastation
A trip to Triboar

Flamerule 3 – Day 21

The brave adventurers, clear from their deadly encounter hours earlier, set out with the Devastation Orb of Fire in tow behind two horses in a cart. The party advance cautiously.

At midday break, the crew encounter a flying scout party from the Feathergale Spire — one Feathergale Priest and young lordling Trenton Gulduvan, Feathergale Enthusiast. They both offer support in the forests ahead, where the Cult of Eternal Flame is known to be guarding in search for their lost Orb.

Sure enough, mere hours later the party find themselves under seige by a flame warrior and his hell hound. Less that 10 seconds later after engaging the fight, a flame priest and another hell hound join the skirmish.

With fireballs and fiery breath consuming the area, the horses got spooked and began charging ahead, Orb in tow.

Demic charged forward, attempting to soothe the spooked beasts, as around him the Feathergale Knights rained death on the Fire cultists, and the party beat back the fire worshipers.

As the fire cult seemed defeated, the Feathergale Knights took the moment to their advantage, swooping down upon the cart and absconding with the Orb.

The damaged and now incensed party lay waste to the aerial thieves, mind controlling and pelting the griffin and vulture.

Eventually, the Feathergale Society members, showing their true colors, lay dead, and the Orb safely again in the hands of the party. Confused and feeling betrayed, Demic left a note on the enemy griffin as he sent it off. “Why’d you steal from us? We were friends. I don’t understand.”

The group grabbed the Orb’s crate, and slept the night, and in the morning walked into Triboar. This bustling city was immediatly familiar to Kaelith, whose Templars work from this town. It was immediate home to Terken and Cyril too, as the Lord Protector of the town Darathra Shendrel is a high ranking Harper agent, who set the group up with food and lodging for bringing the Orb back to saftey.

The Orb was returned by all except Kaelith to Xander’s Antiquaries, a small run-down building that only a few seasoned adventurers seemed to show their patronage. Inside, an ancient lich by the name of Xander Beauregard accepted the Orb and offered a reprimand against the Harpers, for being tardy in the return.

Kaelith, on the other hand, was visited by a different being, a half-elf named Derevi. Invited inside his tent, Kaelith saw much like the other party saw within Xander’s – a plethora of ancient and likely powerful items, flora, and fauna. Instead, however, Kaelith was the one recieving a gift, a simply silver ring with a strange runic engraving. Derevi’s tent was not seen by the others, as Kaelith could not see anything but an abandoned building for Xander’s.

The group decided to take a ten-day to themselves, crafting items, scribing scrolls, brewing potions, concocting poisons, spinning tales of sinister and ominous places far from here…


Flamerule 14th – Day 32
The party set out to Red Larch


Flamerule 15 – Day 33

The party arrive in Red Larch, and root out Justran Daehl as a Cult of the Crushing Wave spy, at the request of Endrith Valivoe. Justran outs Ghileeda, the maid of the Swinging Sword Inn as well, and both are taken by the Constable to face justice in the form most appropriate. The group learn that an ancient temple lies underneath Rivergard Keep, and since Jolly’s death, Gar Shatterkeel has extended his influence from the temple below to the surface. This influence takes the form of a much higher guard at Rivergard, likely including acolytes from the Temple below.

The party, with this news, contemplate for many an hour on what the best course of action is. Retaliate at the Fire Cult at the Scarlet Moon Hall, take vengeance against the Feathergale Society at Feathergale Spire, strike at the secrets in the valley nearby the Feathergale Spire, cull the growing army at Rivergard Keep and capitalize on the newfound information of a secret underground Temple, or slip into the now unguarded Sacred Stone Monastery and learn what lies below the basalt floors of the now silent halls.

Making a decision to set out to Rivergard, the group retire for the night.


Flamerule 16 – Day 34

In the morning, just as they are to set out for Rivergard, they are halted by a peculiar sight in the simple little town of Red Larch. Pulling in from the south of town is a magnificent scarlet and marble carriage, emblazoned with an undeniably royal crest, center to it a scarlet “M”. The carriage pull right up to the Swinging Sword Inn, at the feet of the party, and the door opens….

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Tracking Down a Devastation Orb
Grinding Money and Obliterating Assassins

Kythorn 30 – Day 18

The group continued the fight within the Sacred Stone Monastery, eventually fighting and taking out Qarbo and his elite guard. While the basement of the Monastery still held mysteries, the group set out to deal with an urgent issue in Yartar – the theft of a dangerous magical nuke, a weapon of the Fire Cult.

The group left the Monastery, to find a contingent from the Feathergale Spire resting outside. They explained they were about to lay siege to the evil that lies within the Monastery, and were eager to find that the group already had done so. Thurl Merroska and his knights suggested that the group defeat the dangers that inevitably lay beneath the Monastery, yet the party insists moving on to Yartar. The Knights provide the party a few griffin mounts, to the chagrin of Cyril, who had just finished building boats. Demic seemed very taken with the derpy griffin.

The party fly off to Yartar, where they meet various contacts, and learn of the thief selling the Orb of Destruction. They place a bid for 1700 gold, which exceeded the groups funds. After selling much of the groups capital assets, buying honey, fishing for trout, encountering mentally fortuitous seagulls, and spying on the Wink and Kiss Inn in Yartar, the group go in to buy the orb.

The thief selling it, however, is attacked as she begins to lead the group off. The party give chase to the would-be-assassin, wounding and binding her. She explains that the Orb is already sold to another party, but in exchange for her life would lead them to where the Orb is.

Wounded, the assassin leads the group to a graveyard, where they encounter a group of Kraken Society harbingers, including Ghald the Interloper. The group, with trigger finger unease, let loose a fireball instantly incinerating two of the Kraken Society fighters, and severely wounding the rest.

By the time the fight ended, a group of city guards came upon the adventurers, caught opening a tomb and disturbing the dead. And of murder.

Luckily, the original thief, wounded, came forward suggesting to the guards that the group were simply defending themselves. At her word, the guards uneasily acquiesced to letting the group leave, and in exchange the thief got her 1500gp as a ‘thank you’.

From here, the group readies a wagon drawn by two horses to leave to Triboar with the devastation orb.

Slither leaves the group, walking back home to his family, and moving onto more domestic Zhentarim work.

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Where to go, What to do, When to do it, and Who to Trust
Discussions, Deliberations, and the Duel at SSM

Kythorn 27 – Day 15

The party begin their day waking up in Red Larch’s Swinging Sword Inn. Three of the party find a letter on their floor from Terken.

The party begin gathering information from the Constable about the letter obtained in the Rivergard Keep detailing the presence of a spy in Red Larch. The party are advised to speak with one of the many business-people of Red Larch, as Harburk is unsure who the penmanship belongs to.

Terken and Cyril learn, and later share to the rest of the group, the knowledge that the dwarven genealogy books turned up a lead about Tyar-Besil, a very ancient dwarven kingdom founded underground some 2000 years ago. The ruins, if they still exist, would be a vast and deep network of hewn tunnels extending deep below the hills of the Dessarin Valley, and likely underneath the Sumber Hills. Combining this knowledge with the revelation of Terken’s secret map, it was confirmed that four natural entrances to the underground and extinct kingdom of Tyar-Besil exist, one each at the modern locations of Feathergale Spire, Rivergard Keep, Sacred Stone Monastery, and Scarlet Moon Hall.

The party, through their own sleuthing and from thier snooping later at Sacred Stone Monastery, also learn about the leader of the Black Earth Cult, Marlos Urnrayle. Apparently once a human nobleman who had gone lost in his seemingly insane musings, is now a monstrosity with cobra-like hair that wields a legendary warpick known as Ironfang.

Around noon in the day, the group meet again in the outside, open air ‘tavern’ constructed outside the Swinging Sword Inn as a makeshift attempt to bolster the city and build funds for the reconstruction of the now destroyed Helm at Highsun.

The party took close to an ingame hour talking in circles and attempting to come to a consensus about what to do next, the opportunities and options almost paralyzingly numerous. Coming to a tentative voted agreement, the party adjorn with the intent to set out for allies in Feathergale Spire the day following.

As midnight approaches, the party save for Demic meet in secret just outside of Red Larch, south of Mellikho’s Stoneworks. There they discuss Terken’s issues with Demic, who to Terken seems unnervingly friendly and complicit to the desires of what seems to be another elemental cult. That was also compounded by what Terken explains was Demic’s purposeful impertinence shown to Qarbo in the Sacred Stone Monastery only days ago, which Terken argued led the group being dropped into the Umber Hulk pen.

Ultimately, this meeting decided to eschew the gathering of Feathergale allies, with the hope of leaving one less volatile force out of the already complicated equation.


Kythorn 28 – Day 16

The party set out once more from Red Larch, en route to the Sacred Stone Monastery, overruling Demic’s concern with a majority vote.


Kythorn 29 – Day 17

The party arrive within mere miles of the Sacred Stone Monastery late at night. The party decides to rest for the night. Terken displays his school of choice by raising an undead skeleton.

As the party rest, the skeleton and Kaelith see a strange, almost motionless figure appear on the horizon. It appears to be a man in plate armor.

Kaelith ducks behind a tree, readying a devastating sneak attack in the event that the creature is dangerous, while also rousing the other. The figure approaches the animated skeleton.

As the armored figure approaches, it stops a few feet from the skeleton, and salutes it. The party at this point identify the entity as The Watchful Knight, the namesake centerpiece of the Watchful Knight Inn in Beliard. Those local to the area (Slither and Terken) recall that the Knight had gone missing some time ago, and it seems the group has found it.

The Knight seems harmless, acting as a guard to the animated skeleton.


Kythorn 30 – Day 18

The group set out early in the morning too the Sacred Stone Monastery, with the intent to clear it out. Sneaking close, Kaelith gives away the groups presence at the window of the Dojo. The party get into formation, waiting for the monks to leave their bastion of safety to confront the party in the open air. Unsurprisingly, the monks choose to stay inside their fortress.

The party begin to step inside, met with an overwhelming number of monks as well as Hellenrae, Abbess of the Monastery.

While the fight was quick, it was not without tense moments, including the near death of Kaelith yet again.

At the end, Hellenrae flees into the main enterance chamber, where she and two other monks meet their near instant death at the hands of a seemingly irrate Renwick Caradoon. Here the Lich invites the party that they should not delay any further in ridding the Monastery of the unwanted tennants. Renwick also called upon some of the world’s most mightiest spellcraft, hexing Demic with some unquestionably potent magic that left him dumbfounded for a moment. Renwick thereafter seemingly satisfied, if not chipper, made his way back to his study.

The party choose the rest as Kaelith goes out to investigate the Monastery, but not before two wandering monks find the resting party. These too are quickly dispatched.

Kaelith found three seperate dormatories, one belonging to average monks, one to a bunch of dwarves, and one to hgiher ranking officials. There too here found a lockbox of supreme design, although naturally, without its key.

The party continued to explore onward from there, gathing loot from the library as well as information about Marlos Urnrayle. Specifically that he is the Cult of Black Earth Leader, and that he found his Holy Vesture of Power Irongfang in the Fane of the Eye deep below the Sumber Hills. He serves the Evergrowing Mountain, and works with a strange natural formation known as the Black Geode to bring the Evergrowing Mountain and the grinding inevitability of the Cult of Earth to Faerun.

The party set back out, killing off a few more gargoyles, before the session came to a late night cliffhanger.

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Sleuthing the Sacred Stone Monastery
Seeking tomes, snooping cults, and slaying beasts

23 Kythorn – Day 11

The party return to Red Larch from their small rest from the fights at Rivergard Keep the day prior.

There they find the Constable and his three guards very busy with the elite of the city. In the morning, Terken and Cyril leaves the Swinging Sword Inn to visit the Alfaiths’ Shrine, to see if a cleric might be able to address Terken’s untreatable wound. Sure enough, the cleric of Tempus Imdarr Relvaunder identifies the wound as a mark of lycanthropy, but successfully is able to lift the curse before the next full moon ( 7 Flamerule).

From there, the two set off for Vallivoe’s Sundries, to get the latest news. Endrith reminds the two about the missing dwarven books, and their possible location in Womford, south of Red Larch. The two also ask about Marlos Urnrayle, a mysterious figure with cobra hair that Cyril saw in a dream. Unable to help, Endrith sold 150g worth of ink to Terken, and the two party members left.

Shortly after this, Demic approached Endrith, working his charm, logic, and his wallet to coax Endrith to investigate the “Master of Maelstroms, Foul Air, and The Eye”, to which Endrith – obviously feeling dirty for accepting – takes Demic up on his mission.

After a bit more planning, the group decides that it would be best to split into two small parties, and leave for Womford and the Sacred Stone Monastery separate, to gain a head start in scouting out the monks while Terken and Cyril would hunt down the rest of these books for Endrith Vallivoe.


24 Kythorn – Day 12

Cyril and Terken set out on the Cairn Road to the south, knocking a day off of their 2.5 day travel.

Demic and Kaelith stay in town. They are met with a pair of hellhound inside the Helm at Highsun, who terrorize the patrons, and citizens, while also setting alight the tavern. Kaelith and Demic seem the quarry of these hounds, who stalk up to them with the burning coals of hunger and hate in their eyes.

A perilous fight ensues, with more retreat that fight in the adventurers minds. As the fight consumes the tavern, the citizen guards arrive. Two of Constable Harburks guards are immediately incinerated, while the Constable himself leaves more than a few good blows upon the hounds. From afar, wounded and nearing defeat, Demic and Kaelith pelt spells and arrows at the hounds, who each eventually fall. The two obtain two glowing iron collars, each with a strange symbol emblazoned on them.

Kaelith picks up his now slivered shortsword from Feng Ironhead, and the two rest the day away, as the city mourns the half a dozen citizens slain in the tavern, as well as the last tavern within the city.

The two begin to set out for the Sacred Stone Monastery.


25 Kythorn – Day 13

Terken and Cyril, only miles from Womford, encounter a group of orcs slaying passing traders. Together, the wizard and artificer successfully eliminate this threat, collect their due rewards, and enter into the even-smaller-than-Red-Larch village of Womford. There, they approach a group of three ne’er-do-wells on the docks, who at the sight of a TON of gold (for these kids), they give up information of Shoalar Quanderil, a water gensai who captains the Rivermaiden and is responsible for the selling of the books. Terken and Cyril purchase one book off the teens, and learn the last three are with Shoalar as well as the description of Shoalar’s boat, which the two recall was docked in Rivergard Keep.

The two leave for the Bargewright Inn, to rest the day. The two-walled city of Bargewright Inn is very seedy, without a doubt that illicit deals are made here. Although the old, and almost keep-like Inn is very comfortable, and somewhat reasonable to stay at.

Demic and Kaelith encounter the Knights of Samular, who greet the two. They inform the pair that they are headed to Summit Hall (their base of operations), and would accompany the two on their journey. Along the way, Demic learns of the Knights’ past, having fought in the Second Troll War with their leader Samular Caradoon, and Sam’s brother Renwick Caradoon. The knights’ won the war, but Renwick fell in the battle. Samular fed his arcanist brother a potion of lichdom, however, saving his essence forevermore. Samular is long dead, but Renwick the Lich still lurks in the Sumber Hills, rumored to have holed up in the Sacred Stone Monastery.

The two camp out, protected by the Knights.


26 Kythorn – Day 14

The group once again meets together at the base of the large sandstone cliffs that mark the outer territory of the Sacred Stone Monastery. The Knights continue of the journey, as the party decides to delve into the cliffs.

Entering inside, they are met with the scent of scorched earth, and the same symbol carved into the sandstone walls that was on the hell hound collars.

Deciding to quickly look around the monastery, the party finds inside a group of beaten and burned monks, training roughly with a female monk of genuine skill. The Cult of Black Earth symbol clearly marked upon the wall inside.

Leaving Kaelith behind to spy, the three other go to the front door. Where they are met with the brass-gilded mask of a gargoyle, worn by a human monk. Asking that the party leave the monks to their meditation, Demic begins to weave an argument about potentially having useful information. The door closes, and eventually reopens, this time the party producing one of the hell hound collars. This new monk seems to deem this interesting enough, and leads the party into the monastery, past the basalt great hall, through a hallway, through a sandy courtyard with gargoyle statues, and into the main temple, where the group met Qarbo, the seeming in-charge member of this place.

Qarbo begins with accepting the story about the Fire Cult, and the hell hounds, but then launches into a minor interrogation, asking the party what they would do in various scenarios, what their greatest weakness was, and other open-ended questions. Qarbo quickly shut down anyone who did not give a succinct answer, or who used too much abstract or flowery language. He did seem taken with Terken, who took a good amount of time to thoughtfully reflect, “thinking as We do… slowly, surely… like the rocks we aspire to emulate.”

Demic, however, seemed to grate at Qarbo, however, insulting him on no less that two occasions, working on a third. Qarbo quickly seemed to make a decision, and stood up, asking the party to lead the way down the 40 foot staircase to the north.

The party, extremely suspicious and cautious, decided to do as was asked.

A click was heard, as the group was partway down the stairs.

The party fell into a dark, sandy hole.

As the group got their vision, they saw the beast behind the bars, not more than 30 feet away.

Another click, and the iron doubledoor seperating the monster and the party began to glide slowly open.

Thinking quick, Terken blasted the mechanisms of the door, preventing it from moving. The rest of the party began trying to hit the monster with ranged attacks, but found that cutting through the hide of the monster was nearly impossible.

Eventually, the party fled past an easily unlock iron door, and from there pelted the monster until it died.

From here, many underground paths were found. Two leading into what appeared to be mines, one that seemed to descend down to yet another subterranean level, and a staircase that led back up to the monastery level.

This ascending staircase was in a large, empty tomb/temple. Here, a tomb in the far end held the inscription dedicating it to Samular Caradoon. The party looted what they could, Terken taking the skeletal remains of one of the burial commitals, and the party began to ascend the stairs.

Just as a tall figure, in an old robe, skeletal in apperance, began to descend the very same stairs.

There was no denying – this creature was a Lich – and it had noticed the party.

It did not attack, but rather seemed curious about their presence in what was to be his brother’s Tomb.

Asking about the Knight of Samular, the Lich seemed to think over an idea. Eventually, it decided to lead the group upstairs to what seemed to be its study. Here, Renwick Caradoon handed out a few trinkets of power to the group, and informed that they were permitted to make noise if it meant removing the unwelcome tennants of the Monastery.

He also looked over the party, some spell augmenting his vision. His sight lingered on Demic, and Terken was able to decipher the Lich’s notes, as well as his statement: " Not all of you are cultists, and even then enemies of those who are here".

From here, the party got cold feet, no longer willing to fight through the Monastery, under the (likely) assumption that the monks would be alert and ready for a fight if the adventurers return from down below. They left the monastery, and began to set back out for Rivergard Keep.

Arriving late, Kaelith was sent invisible to inflitrate The Rivermaiden, which seemed to be in the process of packing up to leave. Eventually, Kaelith made it to the cargo hold inside the ship, and was met with the blue hair and blue skin sight of what could only be Shoalar. Ultimately, Kaelith went in for the killing blow, but found that Shoalar was more hearty than expected. He vanished in a cloud of mist, as Kaelith grabbed the bag of books and booked it out of there. The Keep, already on high alert, began raining down bolts at Kaelith, as he sank to the bottom of the river.

Here Kaelith was not safe, as the ship captain seemed at home in the water, and began pelting the skeleton with bolt after bolt of magic missile. As the party dragged Kaelith from the water, Shoalar left the group with one last angry Tidal Wave, bludgeoning the whole group, and knocking Kaelith out cold.

Wet, cold, and now dragging Kaelith and the soggy books, the party set back out for Red Larch.

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Riot at Rivergard Keep
"But the full moon is weeks away!"

Day 9, Continued – 21st Kythorn

The party, with their battle with the ruffians on the road just a night past now, set out for Rivergard Keep. Many in the party have their own reasons for this quick visit, from gathering Intel of their loot (Cyril), and gathering a very valuable sword (Slither), it was enough to pull the whole troupe in.

Arriving rather early in the morning to the hilly grasslands that meet the Dessarin River, the party see as they crest a hill the distant flag of a gauntlet amid a blue sea, a symbol of the keep. Here, they set out invisible spies to watch the motions and changes of guards, as well as get an idea of the conditions and security of the inner keep itself. Kaelith and Slither volunteered for this, and learned a bit about the guards, but also that there seem to be religious sermons daily, and that there are commoners that seem to work here against their will.

Regrouping and sharing this information, the party begin to formulate a few variations of a plan, from advancing under the pretense of joining the keep’s forces as new recruits, to sneaking in under the cover of magic and night, as well as a mix of these plans.

Ultimately, the party waited until the sun had set to send in two invisible and one disguised agent(s), and to have a rear-guard in case things got out of hand.

Before the sun had set completeyl, Kaelith went out herb huntin’, and Terken went out to see if any other boats were inbound to the keep. While he confirmed that no boats were coming, he did find a group of Black Earth Cultists seemingly attempting to create a land bridge / land diversion for the river, and seemed intent on completing this mission.

Night set, the party set out. The party successfully enter from the west and the southeast, but as the party begins to seperate from one another, the actions of Slither begin to rouse suspicion by the on-watch guards whose room Slither entered, and attempted to leave.

From here, Slither entered into the room of Urshorna the Fathomer, and where the alarm throughout the keep was sent out.

A massive battle began, starting out luke-warm at first, but gaining momentum as more and more bandits, reavers, and other guards began to take thier positions through the keep.

Downing many, the party eventually left with what loot and papers they could, thanking that the master of the Keep, Jolliver Grimjaw, was apparently “Out hunting”.

Unfortunately for the escaping party, they were the prey.

The large Boar charged and gored Terken multiple times, as the party began an exasperated siege on the wereboar. Slither found his attacks were useless against the cursed beast, while the rest of the casters were able to make headway. With two nearly dead party members, and Jolly seemingly animated by some strange force of relentless will, it took a massive blow by Cyril to finally down the man-beast.

The party scooped up thier wounded and gored party members, and left as the reduced, but still threatening forces of the Keep began to march out into the night in chase.


Day 10 – 22nd Kythorn

The party sleep the night in the foothills of the Sumber Hills, far from the Keep they had attempted to scout. Each party member tending to their wounds, some more difficult to treat that others, bandaged and healed as best as able, the group set out once more to the Feathergale Spire, to accept once more the hedonistic hospitality of the Feathergale Society, who played many games, provided aid and supplies, and for Demic reiterated his lifetime bond to Yan-C-Bin and the values of the Society, an invisible brand of his loyalty howling silently in his soul.

The party departed, arriving at night in Red Larch. In the few minutes walking through town, it is obvious that the investigation into the murders and the cult of the Believers had started to make changes, with Marlandro Gaelkurs shop being boarded up, and many shopkeepers keeping an eye on customers, and other shopkeepers at arms length.

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Feathergale Flamboyance
Hunting Manticore and Unconvering Cult Presence

Day 6 – 18th Kythorn

The party, after doing a bit of early morning shopping and talking around the town of Red Larch, encounter the shepard Larmon Greenboot, an individual who has found four shallow graves that have appeared in the last few days. Interested, the party readies to leave to the location, a day long journey.

At night, the graves await atop a small hill in the Sumber Hills. In the distance, the black outline of a towering spire, Feathergale Spire, can be seen. In these rocky graves are a dwarven smith from Mirabar, a human Gladiator from Mirabar, a human wearing a white robe with black feathers, and a human with the rocky robe of an earth cultist. Looking around, there seems to be evidence of a skirmish, and evidence of elemental magics still linger in the air.

The party decide to sleep with the shepard and his flock for the night, as the party rotates through a watch. Throughout the night, aerial shapes can be seen, some large and some small.


Day 7 – 19th Kythorn

The party awake, and bid Larmon Greenboot adieu, as they make their way towards the Feathergale Spire in the hopes to learn more about the bodies they just found. Upon arrival, they are greeted by a Feathergale knight by the name of Savra Belabranta, who after gathering their names and purpose, greet them inside the spire.

Inside, she leads the party to Thurl Merosska, the leader of the Feathergale Society, a group of wealthy and military elite from Wavemeet that enjoy mounted hunting, schmoozing, and other revelry.

As night descended – and the party had gambled, schmoozed, explored, and more – Thurl Merosska calls the group to a feast. During the lavish meal, the leader asked the party about their exploits, and seemed genuinely disturbed by the mention of the earth cultist in Red Larch.

But before more stories could be told, a knight burst into the hall shouting “Manticore!”. The chaos of knights leaving to their mounts ensued, with Thurl offering up his ring for any that bring the Manticore’s head!

The party began a daring hunt, with the moon high and the stars shining bright. The clouds were low, with the far-off shadow of the Manticore on the horizon. Together, the party began to set off, searching the clouds. After a few minutes, the party heard the horn of a Feathergale Knight, and set off. For the Manticore, this was the end. Over the course of nearly a minute, the party dogged after the beast, eventually snuffing the beast.

Upon returning, the party received their reward, and Demic – the Schmooze – was pulled aside by Savra. She, learning from the other F.G. Society members, seemed eager to offer Demic a spot amongst the Society, but he would need to speak with Thurl.

The rest of the party was asked by Thurl Merrosska to investigate the Sacred Stone Monastery, a location of reclusive monks that he suspects might be involved with the Cult of Black Earth. Merrosska indicates that “… of all the enemies of ”/wikis/wavemeet" class=“wiki-page-link”> Wavemeet, and thus the Feathergale Society, no enemy is of greater loathing than the Cult of Black Earth. A worthless and stubborn group that should be removed from this region, if not this world".

As the revelries continued, with some gambling with Trenton Gulduvan by Terken, Demic was drawn to a private ritual. There, atop the Spire, Demic was asked to execute a man who the Society called an enemy, specifically suspected to be an Earth Cultist. Demic did not even hesitate, blasting the bound man, who tumbled off of the tower, with the Society members whispering their ritualistic chants – chants that sounded like the gale of a tornado a mile off. A moment later, Demic felt the windy chill of a breeze about his person, a breeze of cruel approval, a breeze of unyielding membership, a breeze of fateful expectation. “You’ve been touched by ”/characters/yan-c-bin" class=“wiki-content-link”>Yan-C-Bin," Merrosska indicates to Demic, " Our leader, Aerisi, will have to meet you soon."

He then, gaining a level of exhaustion, joins his unaware friends in the early hours of the morning.


Day 8 – 20th Kythorn

The party begin to leave the Spire, en route to the Sacred Stone Monastery, as well as Rivergard Keep for a quick stop.

Halfway there, the party encounters what seems to be an ambush encampment of bandits and… barnacle people.

The party argues over what to do – leave and go around, leap into an attack, prepare a counter-ambush, simply speak with them – as a trader caravan approaches.

In a single volley, the bandits nearly kill both caravan guards. In a single volley, the party kill two reavers – the barnacle people.

A battle ensues amidst the sleet storm covering the area in ice, as the sounding of warhorns, smashing of trees, and roars of dragons pummel the area. The party however stay resolved, killing a number of bandits and scaring off a priest of some measure, leaving two bandits to interrogate.

The bandits explain that they are simply mercenaries hired by Jolliver Grimjaw in Rivergard Keep, and that they are one encampment of many. The priest that left the battle is one of the ranked members of Jolliver’s group, whoever they are. They steal things and bring it all to Rivergard keep.

The party spare the bandits, loot the area, and receive potions for their help from the traders. The party decides to burn the tents and destroy the camp, as well as finding a different place to camp for the night.


Day 9 – 21st Kythorn

The party begins their path to Rivergard Keep, interested due to party missions, as well as the ubiquity of banditry that seems now associated with the location.

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The Believers Below
Uncovering conspiracy and murder

Day 4, Nighttime – 16th Kythorn

The party wanders about the city at night, attempting to learn more about the hole in the city, and what might lay underneath.

Seizing the moment and change of the ‘guard’, Terken steps forward disguised as Ulhro Luruth, chatting to Ilmeth Waevlur, current ’guar’d of the hole. Here Terken learns that the ‘elders’ of town are likely to have another meeting in the Tomb, at the usual time. They were to discuss the sudden sinkhole, and what to do with the adventurers who might cause a problem.

Slither, on the other hand, uses this information to tail Ilmeth Waevlur to Albaeri Mellikho’s store, where he overheard a good number of elders aggressively chatting. As time went by, the workers in the quarry seemed to leave, and not too long after that the elders descended into the quarry below.

Returning with the information he had, the entire party decided to sleep.


Day 5 – 17th Kythorn

Slither speaks with Mangobarl, and learns of a Zhentarim mission at the Bargewright Inn, as well as some information that should be taken from Lordling Trenton Gulduvan, a Wavemeetian Lord, who is known to often partake in the festivities of the Feathergale Knights, an eccentric group of lords who fly by hippogriff and hunt manticore, to the east of Red Larch.

Terkyn and Cyril speak with Endrith Vallivoe, who speaks of a collection of what appears to be dwarven genealogical data that is being sold in Womford, and that these books should probably be acquired, so that they might return to a proper home.

During the morning, Albaeri Mellikho and her crew can be seen starting to board up the sink hole, placing many large wooden structure points, as well as sinking many large quarried stone blocks in as well.

The party begin to make plans to have Kaelith slip into town naked, scaring the townsfolk, traders, children, clergy, constable, and many other people as an undead skeleton. Kaelith would start at the Allfaiths Temple (a hornets nest of clerics and other undead smiters), and then be ‘chased’ by the party on his way to the pit, where the presence of an undead being fought off would be the excuse the party needed to enter the tunnels below.

Somehow, this plan was discarded.

Instead, the party skated by on a stroke of luck, as Aerego was the nighttime guard, and was more than easily distracted with conversation of intelligence. One by one, the party slipped by cover of darkness into the tunnels underneath Red Larch. Demic, convincing the young man to leave a bit of guard duty to him for a moment, then turns around to leave a sign on the chair:

BEWARE the Delvers. DON’T touch the stones. BY ORDER of us."

and then, he too, disappears into the tunnels below.

Under here, they found path to the Mellikho stoneworks, evidence of old dwarven miners, dead bodies of travelers, a reassembled petrified dwarf, the Bringers of Woe (a collection of bandits and others who were causing the workers to be afraid), Baragustras, as well as the cult of Black Earth member Larrahk. The presence of a secret group called the Believers was also discovered.

As the party went to rest, they returned to the tunnels below with the Constable, who seemed to be quietly fuming with both apprehension, but also righteous anger. He vowed to begin an investigation, and that those responsible for the dead bodies, as well as the presence of cultists would be brought to justice.

From here, the group began to make plans to journey to the East, into the heart of the Dessarin Valley and the center of the Sumber Hills.

An exciting journey begins to truly unfold for the newly tempered adventures!

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The Lord of Lance Rock
"The Eye you fools! Do you not fear it?"

Day 4, continued – 16th Kythorn

The adventurers continue from their exploits in Tricklerock Cave to the south of Red Larch, as they return to town. Shortly after their arrival, however, a terrible calamity draws the attention of the entire little town.

A gaping sinkhole, in the very center of the city, opens wide, consuming four children, and a concerned mother who got too close.

The adventurers, and a newcomer named Demic, arrive on the scene to shouts of “Get a ladder!” and “A rope, get us a rope!”.

Taking care to not fall in, the party makes quick work of descending into the hole, and saving the children. All the while being told off by three of the village elders, Ulhro Luruth, Albaeri Mellikho, and Ilmeth Waevlur, speaking about “The rocks must NOT be moved!” and “We must not disturb the Delvers!”.

Agreeing, for the time, to heed the elders words, the party retire to a corner of the Swinging Sword inn, to plot their next action.

Deciding to save the infiltration of the Waevler Wagonworks secret tunnel for the evening, the group leave for Lance Rock, to handle once and for all the evil that resides within.

Taking quite a bit of damage as the group make their way deeper into the ravine, facving oddly dressed zombies, crawling claws, a battalion of skeletons, and a relatively powerful necromancer who calls himself the Lord of Lance Rock, they party are triumphant.

They do, however, encounter a sigil floating above the claw within the room – a lidless, black eye that vanishes with the mortal coil of the necromancer.

sigil.png
The sigil encountered

The party gather the driftglobe, magic missle wand, and the valuables of the necromancer, and leave for a nights rest at the Swinging Sword.

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