The Days of High Adventure

Birthright, Part 3
A battle for the fate of the Honorable Blade Clan!

The party is able to talk Tamara down from a fight. Tamara gives them a map to Marsh Hold where the dragonborn are besieged by lizardmen.

Birthright 3A

Kryath leads the party into Marsh Hold but goes forward to speak with the guards so that they do not attack the party.

Birthright 3B

Vashta’s attention is caught by a pile of rotted flesh and bones. He reaches in and deftly removes a lizardman femur without contracting any disease.

Kryath returns and tells the party that he cannot go with the party to meet the clan elders since he has not completed his rites. Kriv and Enri enter and are introduced to the dragonborn clan. The chief, Vyar Coldstream lies on a pallet and is missing a leg. It was taken by a lizardman in the initial ambush. Huntmistress Katra is the clan hunter and cook. Warleader Tark eyes the party with suspicion. He bears a scar. He speaks rudely to the party and insults Kriv’s honor.

It becomes clear to the party that the clan is divided on how to best handle the siege of the lizardmen. Katra says the dragonborn provoked the lizardmen, and they should move out of the area. Tark suggests gaining the aid of Shadowmire, an old powerful black dragon living in the Fens.

Kriv is shocked at Tark’s suggestion, and asks the clan if they serve Tiamat. Tark hesitates, but Katra says “No. We are of the honorable blade.”

A horn blows in the distance. “The dread tails have returned!” The party goes out to help with the clan’s defense.

Birthright 3C

They are surprised when Tark’s men close the barricades behind them! They are left to fight the enemy alone!

The party battles several Dread Tails and a mysterious, cloaked figure moving through the distant trees, flanking the battle. The figure appears to be headed directly towards the Chief’s quarters, and does not engage the party in battle. It is difficult for the party to divide their attention between the lizardmen and the cloaked figure, but Vashta and Enri manage to give chase and interfere with what turns out to be an attempted assassination of Vyar.

After the battle, Enri attempts to perform Object Reading on a blade dropped by the assassin. Tark tries to stop her and have his own mages perform the ritual. Enri is able to determine that the blade was poisoned with Basilisk venom. The clan medicine woman, Tagora comes forward and tells everyone that the venom will act like a slow poison, turning Vyar into stone.

Tark challenges Kriv to a ritual duel. Katra sponsors Kriv into the company but not the clan, and gives Kriv instruction on the rules of the duel.

Birthright 3D

Tark wins the duel but breaks the rules by switching to a different weapon, and prepares to deliver a killing blow! Enri steps forward, stopping Tark from killing her adventuring companion. Tark’s warriors enter the circle and the party members step forward as well.

Thohand works his way over to Kriv to deliver a healing potion and some of Kriv’s gear. Eventually the party is triumphant and Tark is killed.

Katra inducts Kriv into the clan of the Honorable Blade after having him swear an oath. Vyar Coldstream, about to petrify, asks to speak with Kriv. He tells Kriv of his own quest – to find and destroy the 5 hearts and 5 eyes of Tiamat.

Kriv recalls that Jeddak used a heart in his ritual to summon a black dragon. Vyar hands Kriv two Eyes of Tiamat and asks him to continue his quest. Kriv agrees.

XP/GP Summary:
6900XP/5=1380XP each
3500GP/3=1166GP each
500XP to Kriv for Honorable Blade
250XP to Enri for saving Kriv
Tark’s sword – qualities unknown
Jet black crystal Eye of Tiamat
Sparkline white crystal Eye of Tiamat
-200GP from Kriv for (4) healing potions for Kriv & Thohand

Birthright, Part 2

Haldor guides the party past the pickets and into the Witchlight Fens. There is a camp over the hill. There are lots of soldiers. Haldor helps the party blend in and they avoid drawing attention. Haldor speaks with Commander Rylin and learns that there are artifacts in a cave where the soldiers recently caught a troll by the name of Burly.

Several soldiers enter the camp dragging heavy chains attached to Burly. When the party asks Burly “what’s in the cave?” he goes nuts and breaks free. He begins to attack the soldiers. Commander Rylin asks the party to show their stuff by trying to subdue the troll.

The party makes a half-hearted effort, not really wanting to harm the troll, and find a way to “accidentally” free Burly so he can get away. Commander Rylin is furious and demands the party follow Burly and capture him.

The party enters deep into the Fens.

Birthright 2A

They are attacked by a medusa hiding in a tree.

Birthright 2B

Dryads appear and attack the party.

Birthright 2C

Eventually, the party wears down the enemies but is interrupted by the appearance of Tamara, leader of the forest people.

Birthright 2D

The party explains that they are trying to recover an artifact from the troll Burly. The artifact belongs to Kryath’s people. Tamara seems unconvinced, but allows the party to continue, with the understanding that if Burly does not wish to relinquish the artifact, he is not to be harmed.

Birthright 2E

The party approaches a cave and sees TWO trolls milling about. Enri and Vashta discover a ritual circle that emanates strong magic. It seems to link the two trolls together. They approach Burly, who seems upset. Burly says his brother Hurly has “the shiny” and Burly wants it back, but mostly seems interested in eating the party members. The party convinces Burly not to eat them and offers to retrieve “the shiny” from Hurly. Burly tells them he is not supposed to go near Hurly so they will have to get it without his help.

Birthright 2F

Upon seeing the party, Hurly attacks immediately. The party has no choice but to defend itself. During the battle it becomes clear that “the shiny” is actually Kryath’s artifact. Burly comes over and looks to join the battle, fighting against the party, but is fooled by Vashta who suggests instead that he bring over a sack for them to put “the shiny” in so they can give it to him. Burly returns to the cave and is heard rummaging around for a sack.

Meanwhile, the party continues to battle Hurly.

Burly returns with the sack and Vashta places Kriv’s extra Light Shield in it. He then tosses the sack over to Burly while the party kills Hurly.

Birthright 2G

Burly becomes angered when he sees his brother killed and attacks the party. He is killed as well.

The party looks out from the cave and sees Tamara and her people approaching, and they are not happy.

Rewards Summary:
1167GP each
620XP each
Magic item for Vashta
Badge of the Berserker +3 for Kriv
Kriv gives Enri his Amulet of Health +1 (680GP)

Birthright, Part 1

The party returns to Markelhay Keep to much fanfare. Flowers are thrown at our feet. A banner bears the device of a blue lion and two chevrons over a white field. Tarsus, Laird and Markelhay are in the midst of preparations for guests. The door opens and a booming voice asks Farin if these are the ones he spoke of. A human soldier, Alan West, and a weak old dwarf, Sigurd Darkshield, enter the room. The dwarf has a vacant expression, and a bit of drool slides down his chin.

Kryath 1 Markelhay Keep

Sigurd is famous for leading away the “last legion” of Nerathi imerial guard. He was their commander. Alan has collected a menagerie of beasts form the Witchlight Fens. The Fens are home to more beasts than have been seen anywhere. Alan has engaged the services of a wrangler to manage the beasts. It becomes clear during conversation that Alan is a rude sort, who seeks to find the last legion in order to reclaim his lands in northern Nerath. He refers to the native people of the Fens as “tree people” with scorn.

Suddenly a dragonborn bursts into the room and accuses Alan of stealing something. Kriv asks him what and the dragonborn says to follow. He turns and jumps out the window. A chase ensues.
The party catches up with him after using a disguise kit to mislead the guards. He introduces himself as Kryath from the Witchlight Fens. He has been tracking Alan West – to take back what was stolen: A powerful artifact, a blade, stolen from Kryath’s people. Alan murdered their elders and looted artifacts. Alan’s camp is between Fallcrest and the Fens.

Kryath 1 Object Reading

Kryath leads them to a tavern in a bad part of town. They are suprised when they enter; it is quiet inside. A spell makes the tavern sound packed and rowdy from the outside. This is clearly a smuggler’s den.

Whispering quietly at a corner table, Kryath tells about Alan’s caravan, and that 40-50 beasts were taken from their habitat in the Fens. Kryath has a scrap from one of Alan’s personal guards which Enri casts Object Reading on. She has the following visions:

  1. Kryath knocking out the guard with the hilt of his sword coming around the corner
  2. The guard whining about watching animals. The trainer is not much better. Creatures in the background, huge monster whipping them into submission. They appear to be in a natural cave. Boxes and crates are scattered about.

The group agrees to help Kryath recover his family artifact. They step outside the tavern and are immediately confronted by Sigurd, still with a vacant look in his eyes. Sigurd hands them a map.

Enri performs Object Reading on the map and sees:

  1. Fallcrest – Sigurd looks out of the keep. Stars at night. Armed guards watch him.
  2. Moon Hills – Top of hill. Large pillars in Bael Turathi ruins. Wagons being loaded/unloaded with beasts and loot. Soldiers. Sigurd in shackles.
  3. Witchlight Fens – Swamp locale. Alan conversing with beautiful high forest Elves. Alan exchanges trinkets with them.

The party sets out for the Moon Hills.

Kryath 1 Menagerie 1

Battle with Displacer Beasts, Owlbear, Duelists.

Kryath 1 Menagerie 2

Battle with Minotaur, Bullettes, Owlbear.

Kryath 1 Menagerie 2 Adrie

They interrogate Haldor the Minotaur. Animals for sale. Treasure in cave. The party recruits Haldor as a hireling. Party member #7.

Rewards Summary:
800XP each PC for 2 combat encounters
100XP each PC for chase & roleplaying

Markov Tower, Part 2

Markov Tower 1

Kriv, with his hand crossbow at the ready, climbs the rope to the first floor that is fully intact. Bandit ascends with him. Kriv finds no one around and signals the party to climb up. There is nothing around except a pile of broken furniture and useless equipment. They can hear a tapping sound of metal and stone being worked from higher up in the tower. Small pieces of stone and metal occasionally fall down from above. The party decides to continue up the rope to the next floor.

Markov Tower 2 Corellon Puzzle

On this floor they find an altar to Corellon. On it is inscribed “The gifts of Corellon may be found within” in Elvish. On the altar is a stone tablet, with an array of circles. The tablet exudes magical power. A chisel is attached to the tablet by a mithril chain. Some of the circles are engraved with arcane symbols. Vashta figures out the puzzle and unlocks the altar. He receives Corellon’s Boon of Arcane Might. Stairs in the corner lead up, closer to the source of the tapping sound. Kriv carefully sneaks up the stairs to see what is above. He fails to sneak and the tapping stops, then resumes after a while. Kriv peeks up and sees many works of art in stone. Armor hangs from statues of elven warriors. At the far end of the room a minotaur works at a forge. It is clad only in a loincloth, with its back to the stairwell.

Markov Tower 3 Minotaur Blacksmith

The party climbs up the stairs and confronts the minotaur. The minotaur introduces himself as Sammon, servant of Saro. He asks what the party is doing here. Vashta explains that he was summoned by Saro. Sammon seems suspicious but does not attack. In the ceiling is a trap door with a pull chain anchored to a ring set into the wall near the middle of the room. The trap door is closed. Sammon points at the trap door and warns the party not to take any of his master’s things from the workshop above. The party pulls the chain, opens the trap door and climbs up.

After climbing up into Saro’s workshop, the party is surprised by a group of orcs who are looting the room! Vashta calls down to Sammon that the master’s workshop is being robbed. Sammon says “They will keep” and closes the trap door, sealing the party in!
Vashta asks one of the orc leaders where Saro is. The orc points to a metal sarcophagus standing against the far wall and says “He is nothing but bones!” and all the orcs laugh.
Several of the orcs are armed with twin crescent chain axes and move in to attack the party.
Markov Tower 4 Orc Thieves 1Markov Tower 5 Orc Thieves 2Markov Tower 6 Orc Thieves 3
Enri, Vashta and Adrie take on the main group of orcs while Kriv and Thohand focus on the orc leaders. After wiping out the other orcs, the rest of the party joins Kriv and Thohand to finish off the leaders. Kriv, overwhelmed by emotion in service to Moradin, cuts out the black heart of the orc leader and holds it up high, as an offering to Moradin, and throws it into the fire.

Markov Tower 7 Vashta Sarcophagus

Saro is nowhere to be found. Vashta and Enri explore the workshop, looking for places he might be hiding. Vashta approaches the sarcophagus. He cuts his hand and places it on the lid. The lid slides open to reveal an empty sarcophagus!

Vashta calls out “Saro, I have come as summoned!”

There is no response.

Markov Tower 8 Vashta yells to minotaur

Vashta yells down to Sammon that Saro is not up here. Sammon says he does not know where Saro is.

The party explores the rest of the workshop. They find several furnishings enchanted with arcane magic, which Enri uses Object Reading on:

  1. A brain in a jar
    Enri sees a shadowy figure at the ritual circle, with one hand on the jar, completing a ritual, then a blinding flash…A young minotaur presents the jar to the shadowy figure. The brain within is not human, but metallic in construction…The minotaur making the top plate for the jar, fashioned from mithril harvested from elven corpses the minotaur is dismembering.
    Vashta places his bleeding hand on the jar and nothing happens. He tries to move the jar but it is too heavy. Kriv is also unable to move the jar.
  2. A ritual circle
    Enri sees orcs looking at it, not interested in it at all…The completion of a binding ritual. A figure of an ill tiefling, eyes sunken, cuts and boils on its body. Upon completion of the ritual the tiefling seems happier and walks away…The minotaur holding down a creature with an obsidian arm, thrashing, a shadowy cloaked figure performing a ritual over it and taking the obsidian arm…Saro trading with a Githyanki, pocketing a jewel…A hooded figure staning over a winged demon and removing its heart with a knife.
  3. Blue flames
    Enri sees orcs leaning in, flame bursting out and startling them…Saro cutting the throat of a young tiefling…Saro lighting the blue flames with a wave of a hand.
    Vashta places his bleeding hand into the flames and nothing happens. He places his black dagger in the flames and it is wrenched out of his grasp and slowly consumed by the flames.
  4. A fountain that heals
    Enri determines that the fountain has healing properties. Each member of the party drinks from the fountain.
  5. A fountain that weakens
    Enri sees orcs pointing at one orc who is moving slowly…A shadowy servant forcing down a tiefling before torture…Servants filling the fountain.
  6. Silver sarcophagus
    Enri sees a group of orcs prying at its lid and failing to open it. Their leader gives up…The sarcophagus opens and a robed figure steps out. A skeletal hand pulls a hood over its head, and villagers are sacrificed…The same skeletal figure falling out of the sarcophagus but in a different room. The minotaur helps it up.

Vashta decides to seal himself into the sarcophagus. The lid closes easily and Vashta is enveloped in darkness. Moments later he finds himself in a circle of light. Saro greets Vashta, and says “It has been a long time. When we began the quest we thought we could increase power through pacts. I grew tired of it. He is me. He is out there continuing his search for power. I killed your mother, you know. I cut her heart out. I don’t know why but here we are. Mother demon one and the same. Where’s my body? Hard to say – it’s not on this plane. Not in the mortal plane either. Maybe the Shadowfell. You were called by the Beacon. We have been seeking you. Don’t let Saro find you, it won’t turn out for you. he seeks a pact in the far realm. He will exhaust the sister planes soon.

Vashta offers his body as a vessel to carry this part of Saro. He stumbles out of the sarcophagus with all of Saro’s memories.

Markov Tower 9 Fighting Minotaur

Vashta swears vengeance against the minotaur in the name of the Summer Queen for the elves it has killed and dismembered for raw material. The party opens the trap door and descends to the minotaur’s workshop. Sammon turns around and says “You took something from my master, didn’t you?” and the party attacks.

Some of Sammon’s statues transform into gargoyles and attack the party!

Markov Tower 10 Killing Minotaur

A swarm of rot grubs damages Adrie’s blade. The party focuses on killing Sammon then flees the room to safety.

Reward Summary:
2500XP/5=500XP each for Orc Treasure Hunters
1700GP/3=566GP each
Raise Dead and Make Whole rituals for Enri
350XP to Kriv for Moradin Deed
2000XP/5=400XP each for Minotaur Battle

Markov Tower, Part 1

After the battle in front of Ander’s estate, Kriv finds a mechanical dagger device strapped to an assassin’s arm. He chops the arm off from the body and takes it. The party also discovers 72sp in Nerathi currency and a scroll on the body of the leader. It is written in some kind of cipher, and bears a seal of two crossed swords and a rose motif. Adrie says the seal belongs to Balwer.

The party returns to the keep and finds Tholomin still enjoying a haunch of meat. Thohand moves to Tholomin’s left and confronts him about the assassins. Tholomin says he heard those girls he was sent to protect “got into trouble” – the assassins were clearly Balwer’s courtesans.

Kriv attempts to slip the severed arm and dagger device onto Tholomin’s plate. Tholomin notices and simply orders another plate from the serving girl. Kriv removes the arm from the plate. When the new plate arrives, Kriv throws the arm onto the new plate of meat to intimidate Tholomin and proceeds to empty his pockets. They find more of the Nerathi silver pieces identical to those found on the assassins.

Intimidating Tholomin

Enri encourages Tholomin to leave this land and let their paths never cross again. Kriv and Enri tell him he is always up to no good and if they see him again they will kill him. Before he leaves, Enri switches one of Tholomin’s coins for one of hers.

The party then speaks to Commander Laird about Willaver Spellsword who spoke of going after orc slavers. Laird fills in the party on Willaver’s quest to track down orcs who purchased slaves from the Bloodspears. He assures the party that Willaver is only tracking and will not engage in battle.

Meanwhile, Vashta chats up Adrie while Ander thanks the party for killing the assassins. He offers them rooms at his estate for the evening. The party accepts, and Adrie asks Vashta if he would like her company. Vashta agrees eagerly.

* * *

The sudden shaking startles the miners enjoying their evening meal. They hear a child screaming from inside the mine and decide to investigate. Deep inside they come upon a tiefling child in front of some arcane ritual materials and across the room is an old woman floating off the ground.

Young Vashta summons a demon
One of the miners attempts to interrupt the ritual by knocking out the child. The old woman is consumed by fire and in her place appears a succubus!

Saving young Vashta from the demon

The miners flee, taking the child with them, and barely escape with their lives.

“And that’s all I can remember.” Vashta tells Adrie. “So you will go to the Warlock Saro?” asks Adrie. “Yes.” “Take me with you.”

Vashta and Adrie

They head down to Ander’s dining hall to join the rest of the party for breakfast.

Breakfast with Ander

Ander tells how Balwer bragged his way into Nerath with a criminal group and envies Ander’s high class business. Enri decides to use Object Reading on one of Tholomin’s coins. She receives 5 images:

  1. Enri taking the coin from Tholomin
  2. Tholomin dividing treasure and scrolls with assassin/courtesan girls
  3. Tholomin receiving a pouch of coins from a fat man in a great city
  4. A disgusting-looking person throws coppers and goes into a back room to see a courtesan
  5. The same man brutally stabbing and robbing someone in the street

Enri asks Ander if Balwer is fat and Ander says yes, he is a huge man.
Vashta cuts himself on the black dagger of Lolth he carries in his bag. The wound bleeds profusely and Vashta begins to weaken. Suddenly his eyes glaze over and he grabs the black dagger. He lunges for one of the serving girls and tries to stab her! He misses, and Kriv restrains his dagger hand. The ring on Vashta’s hand starts to glow hotly. With his free hand, covered in blood from his wound, Vashta smears words on the table that say “Come to me my pupil” then passes out. Ander runs from the room.

After Vashta regains consciousness, Adrie has the help clean up all the blood. Vashta’s wound heals. Enri and Vashta purchase components to use for rituals and to make healing potions.

The party heads out for Markov Tower.

As they pass into a forest, the come upon the remains of 4 humanoids. The bones are stripped clean. There are holes all over the ground, which is covered by slime. The slime burns to the touch.

Enri casts Speak to the Dead on one of the skeletons. “The Beastmaster serves the master of Markov. This is his hunting ground. There are unnatural creatures under his command. The slime is from a creature with tentacles and a big mouth.”

The party camps for the evening, leaving Bandit up to watch for intruders. The next day they encounter a man standing alone on the path. He is the Beastmaster. He summons several creatures from the forest to attack the party.

Battling the Beastmaster

The Beastmaster casts a spell that turns Kriv into a mouse!

Kriv turned into mouse

Vashta almost kills the Beastmaster but makes him yield. The Beastmaster tells of Saro, his master, who lives in Markov Tower. There are no secret ways in and the front is guarded by the Queen of Skulls and a group of undead. The party tells the Beastmaster to leave this place, be free, and do no harm. He agrees quickly and is on his way.

As the party approaches Markov Tower, they see the Queen waiting for them, with her undead minions. One is a large dragonlike creature! Vashta and Enri recognize it as a Dracolich.

Queen of Skulls 1

Thohand and Kriv are hit by spells that slide them off the edge but are able to climb back up to rejoin the battle.

Queen of Skulls 2

After defeating the Queen and her minions, the party enters Markov Tower. The first few floors are destroyed. A rope ladder leads to the upper levels.

Reward Summary:
125XP each for Mine vignette
1500XP/5=300 each for battling the Beastmaster
1750XP/5=350 each for Queen of Skulls battle
+2 Shimmering Armor for Enri
72sp Nerathi coins split between Kriv and Enri

The Siege of Fallcrest, Part 3

Kriv swings Wicked Fang and opens a seeping gash in Singe. The attack invigorates Kriv, restoring his vitality. Kriv speaks to Wicked Fang and a bolt of power shoots from his sword into Singe. The fresh wound continues to spew ichor for some time.

Vashta, Enri and Smoke attack Singe while he is down, while Nor attempts to escape from the dragon’s mouth. He is able to escape but is hit by a blast of fire from Singe that strikes him dead on the spot.

Angered at the death of their friend, the company lashes out with renewed strength, killing Singe. Kriv immediately begins hacking away at the dragon’s neck to sever its head while Enri casts Gentle Repose on Nor to preserve his body for a Raise Dead ritual.

They find 1100 gold pieces in Singe’s hoard and set out for Fallcrest. Outside the gates they meet with Og Skullsplitter and present him with Singe’s head. Og pays the bounty of 1650 gold pieces, and as agreed, orders his people to quit the siege and return home.

After entering Fallcrest the party meets with Faren Markelhay in the Great Hall of the Keep to deliver the good news. Commander Laird is enjoying some fine leaf with his old friend Simon Sweetleaf, visiting from Fort Strongblade.

Willaver Spellsword is nearby, regaling a small audience with tales of his exploits. He has been hunting and driving off gnolls in the Gardbury Downs. As he tells it, the infestation of the area with beastmen is worse than ever. His squire, Mutt, is not around. He plans to rescue slaves from the bloodspear slave pens which are about a half mile from the warrens proper. The Orc slavemasters, Hagmar and Vangril are keeping slaves in violation of the recent agreement between the party an the Orc chieftain, Og Skullsplitter.

Vashta learns from the seer Tarsus Nighteye that a gypsy may be found at Five League House on the road to Hammerfast – perhaps the one he has been tracking since picking up her trail in the adventure Beauties and the Beastmen, Part I. He also learns that the warlock Saro is at Markov Tower which lies north of the Winterbole Forest. Markov is said to be filled with treasure including a ritual book of Raise Dead.

Also present are Ander and his assistant who Vashta recognizes as the one that pounced on him in Winterhaven. Ander introduces her as Adrie. She seems distracted by someone she is watching through slitted eyes. The party looks around and is surprised to see Tholomin Pegason at a far table, enjoying a haunch of fowl. He and Adrie appear to be watching eachother with suspicion.

Fallcrest 1

Adrie tells the company that Tholomin works for a competitor of Ander’s who goes by the name of Balwer. Tholomin helps smuggle Balwer’s courtesans in and out of Fallcrest to perform their services. His courtesans are branded with an X on their backs. She has learned that Balwer plans to assassinate Ander, and asks the company to help prevent the crime.

After much argument the company agrees and sets out for Ander’s estate. As they approach they are attacked by several archers. Balwer’s courtesans are actually assassins! Tholomin is nowhere to be found.

Ander 1

The two Battle Dancers and three Sharpshooters prove quite difficult to fight. Their armor is thick and their arrows fly true.

Ander 2

Kriv rushes out and hits several of them with Dragon Breath, focusing their attention on him.

Ander 3

Smoke and Vashta fall unconscious but are healed just in time by Thohand. Smoke retreats to the side of one building to take cover from the deadly arrows.

Ander 4

Eventually the company prevails against the assassins.

They decide to travel to Markov Tower to find the hoard and confront the warlock Saro. Before leaving, Kriv purchases Horned Helm at a local outfitter.

XP/GP Summary:
3250XP/5=650XP for slaying Singe
1100GP/4=275GP from Singe’s hoard
1650GP/4=412GP Og’s Reward
1850XP/5=370XP for preventing the assassination of Ander
600GP/4=150GP Ander’s Reward
Kriv -1800gp for Horned Helm
-125GP x 4 to Raise Dead Nor, he takes -1 to checks for 3 milestones

The Siege of Fallcrest, Part 2

Tsof2 crossing

The party takes an extended rest after battling the cave trolls then heads towards the river’s edge.

They find a small dock where a barge moves from one side of the river to the other through a chain and wheel system operated from the Fallcrest side of the river. The barge is at Fallcrest and no one can be seen. It appears the outer city has been vacated.

Kriv attaches a note to a crossbow bolt and shoots it into the door of a building near the wheel, but no one comes out to read it.

He then crosses the river by climbing along one of the chains.


Kriv turns the wheel to move the barge to the side of the river where the rest of the party is waiting but is unable to bring the party back due to the additional weight.

Enri climbs the chain but falls into the river. She reaches the shore but loses some alchemical components and a vial of holy water in the strong current.

Vashta and Nor climb the chain across and join the rest of the party.

They find that all of the gates to the inner city are barred and covered except one which is manned by guards. They approach and yell out greetings. They tell the guards that they were sent by Clarissa DeGarmond to help fortify the city against the siege of the Orcs.

The company is met by Captain Doragan. He says his mercenaries are down to 140 men, and mentions having some problems with Faren Markelhay not wanting his men garrisoned in the city. Because of this, the mercenary camp was outside of the fortifications and took heavy losses in the last wave of attacks by the Orcs.

Kriv asks Doragan if Faren is incompetent as evidenced by this tactical folly. Doragan assures him that Faren is only interested in the town’s defense but also wants to know why the Orcs are here. It is unusual that the Orcs have brought their entire warren – families and children – with them to the siege in such great numbers.

Fallcrest 2 - Meeting Markelhay

Captain Doragan takes the party to see Faren.

With Faren is his Seer, Tarsus Nighteye, and Commander Laird, leader of the town militia.

Kriv introduces Lost and Found to Faren, and informs him that they successfully stopped Og Skullsplitter‘s plan to use Cave Trolls to attack the town’s defenses. Tarsus interrupts and states that this confirms his visions. Kriv squints at Tarsus and asks, “Yes, we killed the blue shaman. Right, Tarsus?” – knowing that the shaman was indeed red, to test Tarsus. Tarsus is intimidated and retreats to his pensieve.

Faren and Laird believe that in order for the Orcs to have brought their warrens this is more than a raid. Normally the Orcs might raid for food, weapons, or slaves, but these forces are intent on capturing the city.

Kriv asks Faren quietly if Tarsus has brought any unusual artifacts back to the city recently.
Faren tells Tarsus to show the party what he has found. Tarsus reluctantly waves the party over to a table and shows them three objects:

  • A portion of a granite column from an underground site. Vashta determines that it is Dwarven in origin; he touches it and has a vision seen through the eyes of an Eladrin warrior in a scouting party underground. The last thing he sees is a flood of kobolds clubbing him to death.
  • A misshapen rough gem, size of a melon, cloudy as quartz. Blood dark red. Vashta senses the gem is unnatural. Enri find it has no discernable arcane purpose. Might be a raw material.
  • A mask made from the skull of an Eladrin, hollowed out to fit a small head. The eyes have been hollowed out and raised vertically.

Tarsus tells of dwarven ruins north of the city that are connected to crypts below the castle. The crypts have been filled in to prevent invaders from using the ruins to gain entry into the city. Enri uses diplomacy to get Tarsus to admit that he does not understand the visions he has been having of kobolds, underground, participating in some form of ritual worship.

When the party learns that Og may be responsive to parley, they set out for his camp to the north.

Fallcrest 2 - Parley with Og

The party is conducted into Og’s presence. They are surprised when he greets them in the common tongue. When asked why he is attacking the city, Og goes on and on about how the orcs have for too long put up with their miserable existence, driven back by the humans and other races. He longs for a return to old times when orcs roamed the land freely.

Kriv gestures magnanimously with his hands and in a bold voice tells Og that he should take his warren to Hammerfast, where orcs live well. Og is unimpressed, and tells Kriv that the orcs at Hammerfast would not take his warren in. He does not want to live as they do either.

Vashta suggests that something must have chased Og’s people to Fallcrest. Tension fills the air as Og asks “what do you know of this?” Og tells the party of the dragon Singe, spawn of an old red dragon who lived along orc territory for years in relative peace. The old dragon died and Singe is greedy for the orcs’ treasure and lands. He has grown an army of kobolds who live with him underground. Orcs don’t like to fight underground.

The party offers Og a deal. The party will kill Singe and his kobold army if Og agrees to stop the siege of Fallcrest and take his warrens home. They also get to keep any treasure they find, and want 1600 gold pieces upon delivery of Singe’s head to Og.

Og reluctantly agrees. The party sets out for Singe’s lair.

Fallcrest 2 - Entering the Lair

Shortly after entering the lair the party is confronted by a decision. Take the left or the right passage? The party pools ingredients to help Enri cast Hand of Fate. The hand points them to the left passage. They proceed.

Fallcrest 2 - The Left Passage

Here the party fights a dragonborn cleric and a plethora of kobolds, who enter the room in waves. Even though the party kills many kobold minions, more come to take their place.

Fallcrest 2 - A Plethora of Kobolds

The kobolds are wearing Eladrin skulls as masks. Nor knocks the cleric prone where it spends most of the encounter. Eventually the party kills the cleric and all of the kobolds, and takes a short rest. They then proceed through the big double doors where the kobolds came from, and find themselves in a grand chamber. At the far end they can see a red dragon. It is Singe.

Fallcrest 2 - Lair of Singe

Flanking the dragon are two Exemplar. Nor Commands one of them to jump off the platform to its death. Battle ensues.

Lair of Singe II

Once the party kills off all of the kobold minions, Singe takes flight and begins to attack the party from the air with various attacks such as bite, claw, tail strike and breath blast. During the fight, Enri and Nor get grabbed by Singe. Enri is able to escape but falls to the ground because Singe was in the air. Vashta invokes Diabolic Transformation to get protection from Singe’s fire breath while regenerating health slowly. Kriv uses Boundless Endurance to regenerate when bloodied.

Fallcrest 2 - Singe Battle

Nor dishes out healing to party members, eventually sacrificing his own life energy, bringing him down to a low level of health.

Vashta comes up with the idea to use the rope and grapples from their adventuring kits to try to rope Singe down to the ground and restrict his movement. Vashta and Kriv, with Smoke’s assistance, are able to get two lines hooked to Singe and bring him down. Smoke becomes grievously wounded. Nor uses all of his remaining healing surges.

Singe strikes out and bites Nor, holding him in his mouth, dealing ongoing damage. Soon Nor will fall unconscious. Kriv steps forward to swing his longsword at Singe, who is down on the ground…

To be continued!

Encounter Continuity Photo:
Fallcrest 2 - Session Save

XP/GP Summary:
1500XP/5=300 for crossing the river
1750XP/5=350 for Plethora of Kobolds

The Siege of Fallcrest, Part I

The company travels to Tiandra’s tower in Mithrendain to report to Alan Grimm. The Eladrin receive them but are visibly nervous. Enri speaks for the company and tells the Eladrin that the war has been averted. Alan asks about Querelian, and Enri tells him that his whereabouts are presently unknown. Alan tells the company that Querelian is no longer Lost and Found’s problem.

Alan awards the company with several items of treasure, including a healing potion. Alan then walks over to Vashta and asks if he will accept Tiandra’s kiss. Vashta accepts, and Alan kisses him on the mouth. He tells Vashta that Tiandra has delivered her kiss to Vashta through him, and that he has received a boon. He gains +2 to knowledge skill checks but -2 to saving throws underground.

All the company’s diseases are cured.

On the night of the next full moon the company returns through the portal to Silverlake to a hero’s welcome. Regina returns home. The company visits Omaphara at the Fae Barrow. She is happy they stopped the war, but Querelian recently visited her and will not change from his path. He is here hunting the outcasts from the Jagged Fangs who fled to the mortal plane.

Enri determines that Omaphara is bound here by a curse and is able to dispel it. Pohr is happy and goes home.

The party returns to camp.

The hirelings present a letter from Clarissa. The letter states that Weyzig has been sent to Fallcrest for punishment. Clarissa needs the company to break the siege of the Bloodspear Orcs at Fallcrest. Clarissa has half of her mercenaries in the city of Fallcrest but she wants the company to run the blockade.


The company sets out for the Cloak Wood west of Fallcrest. They send Vashta east over the hills towards Fallcrest to spy on the Orc siege and determine the best point for clandestine entry into the city.

Vashta find a small picket of Orcs surrounding a deep pond near the entrance to some ruins. He is able to understand Giant speech and hears one of the Orcs say “Og has brought in a shaman to help break past the city defenses but he will not be ready until night.” Vashta returns to get the rest of the company.

The company is unable to surprise the Orcs so they attack while moving to block the Orcs from entering the ruins. Nor casts a spell on the leader of the Orcs and makes him fall prone into the pond. Meanwhile Kriv and Enri move towards the ruins while fighting the Orc Warriors. Vashta takes down one of the Warriors with Nypacian Serpents while Nor finished off another with his Sacred Flame. Enri kills two Warriors with her Fireball and Fire Shield while Vashta kills off the Archers. During the battle the Orc Captain tries to parlay. He offers to tell the company what is in the ruins if they let him flee the battle. He promises to run home. The company hears him out and learns that there are three fearsome creatures in the ruins that the shaman is trying to bring under his control. The party decides to finish off the Captain anyway.

They enter the ruins and find themselves trapped in a corridor. In front of them is a door with four locks. Vashta opens one lock but fails to open another. The room fills with poison gas and everyone takes damage.

Enri opens the remaining locks with Knock and the door is opened. They send Quiziri to investigate the corridor to the right and Bandit to check the way to the left.

The company is not certain which way to go. Enri casts Hand of Fate and it points to the left. Bandit opens the door and the company moves into the next room where the Orc Shaman is waiting.

From the three doorways appear three Cave Trolls! The company moves quickly to kill the Shaman first. While attacking the trolls they notice that the wounds are regenerating. Nor tells the company that the only way to truly kill these trolls is to finish them off with acid or fire after they are unconscious.

Cave Troll Battle I

During the battle, the trolls grab Kriv and Smoke and use them as improvised melee weapons to attack the other party members! Vashta turns into a diabolic brute and uses Fey Switch to swap places with one of the grabbed party members, effectively breaking the grab!

Eventually all the trolls are slain. Enri and Nor use acid to finish off two, Vashta uses fire on the other.

XP/GP Summary:
Awarded by Alan Grimm:
Mithril Crown 250gp
Moonstone Ring 250gp
Eladrin Circlet 250gp
Ivory Statuette 250gp
Citrine Ring 250gp
Eladrin Amber & Garnet Necklace 250gp
1 to Vashta
2 to Enri
2 to Nor
1 to Kriv
Healing Potion for Kriv
Kiss for Vashta; boon from Tiandra: +2 to all knowledge skill checks, -2 to saving throws underground.

+350gp Kriv sells Amber & Ring
-70gp Kriv purchases Religion components
-100gp Kriv purchases Arcane components
-100gp Nor purchases (2) Healing Potions
-100gp Vashta purchases (2) Healing Potions
Enri exchanges Amber for (2) Healing Potions
-50gp Kriv purchases (1) Healing Potion
-50gp Nor purchases Arcane components
-140gp Enri purchases Religion components
-250gp Enri purchases Arcane components

600XP/5=120 for freeing Omaphara from Querelian’s curse
1650XP/5=330 for Orc Picket
1150XP/5=230 for Orc Shaman and Trolls

Weapon of Myrdroon’s Shard +2 for Vashta
1500GP/4=375 treasure
Level 8 magic item for Nor

Bark at the Moon, Part IV

Vashta’s Story

While the company was crossing south through the forest in pursuit of Pohr, the party noticed that Vashta had wandered off on his own.

During the party’s rest after the last fierce battle, Vashta had been craving something other than the typical breads and dried meats that filled his pack. He decided to go see if he could hunt or scavenge something with a little more flavor. After a good hour or two or wandering, he came upon a lovely bush filled with the most succulent berries he had ever seen. Not waiting around to see if they were suitable for consumption, he crammed a handful of the delicious looking berries into his mouth……only to hear the gentle weeping of the berries on the way down. Just as he stopped and thought to himself that it was a bad idea, he heard a voice in his head saying, “Vashta and Rubiss in the Fey Wild.” just before he passed out. He awoke in a small clearing in the forest lying on top of what appeared to be a ritual circle, completely paralyzed by some unknown force. Next to him was a beautiful woman, who turned to him and said, “Vashta and Rubiss in the Fey Wild. The blazing death is gained by the blood fed to the darkness.” Not knowing what this woman meant, he at least realized that she was the ‘Rubiss’ inside his head. His efforts to respond in his native tongue were apparent not understood by Rubiss. What seemed like an eternity went by as she kept repeating the phrase. Eventually, Vashta replies with, “The darkness knows the murderer by name.”, which rewarded him with Rubiss’ crooked smile. Rubiss began chanting softly in an unknown tongue and a thin veil or darkness descended upon them. Rubiss finished her incantation and plunged a knife into both his and her chests, just missing their hearts. A pain like no other he had ever felt shot through Vashta’s body as his blood spilled out on to the ritual circle and he (yet again) found himself passing out.

Vashta's Trip 1

Vashta awoke in the same clearing with his head spinning far worse than the feelings he awoke to after another near death experience. He arose to find himself a bit…….taller. The trees seemed vaguely shorter and the ritual circle much farther away than he remembered. He hears a large cracking sound as a large demon pushes its way through the tree line! He had left his weapons back at the camp so the only choice was to raise his fists and tear the demon apart with his bare hands. After all, he had a demon form, right? He begins to chant his incantation to begin the transformation, and that’s when he notices his hands aren’t quite the same. Looking down now, neither was his body! A little startled, he falls to the ground over his own tail. The demon takes this chance to maneuver within an arms length. The demon says to Vashta, “The darkness blesses those with the black blood!”, gives him a light embrace on the cheek and vanishes……as does his surroundings. Vashta looks around only to realize he is back at the camp, and completely alone. He feels a sharp pain in his chest and removes his shirt to find the healed wound from the dagger Rubiss had plunged into his chest. Realizing that the demon was Rubiss, and that she too had a similar benefit from the ritual, he sets off after his companions, new form obtained. Thoughts of this woman would not fade quickly.

Vashta's Trip 2

Back to the Company

A pine box containing scraps of paper correspondence is discovered in the Jagged Fangs’ lair.

Enri reassembles the scraps and determines that they came from two separate letters. One invites Akadela to the gathering hordes to stand for leadership. The other letter is from Querelian. No other details can be found, so Enri casts Object reading and receives two visions:

  1. Querelian at White Thorn, signing the letter. About to depart. The letter is addressed to Akadela. Something about recent developments.
  2. Night at the lair. Akadela’s wererat is reading the letter and it is making her furious. She rips the letter into pieces.

The company returns to the werewolf settlement to pick up Victor Mazen’s body. They head for the bridge to Mithrendain but are stopped by the guards. Talaran, Knight-Captain, is in charge.

Enri convinces Talaran that they can prove there is a conspiracy to restart the War of the Pelt. Talaran comes down to listen. She inspects one of the arrows in Victor’s body and discovers that while Eladrin in style, the fletching is of ancient Third Age tradition. Not current Eladrin fletching. She dispatches a courier to escort the company to Mithrendain and suggests they speak to the High Priest at the Temple of Corellon if they want to try to raise Victor from the dead.

The High Priest, Salen, is able to raise Victor from the dead. Victor asks for an update on the situation. When the company says they need to take him to the gathering hordes to stop another war, Victor wants assurance that the Eladrin will not attack.

The company visits Alan Grimm, consort of the Summer Queen, and gets him to assure Victor that the Eladrin will not attack.

The company takes Victor to the gathering hordes. Victor tells them that it is his people’s tradition that a new leader will be chosen for the Broken Stone Clan because even though he was raised, he did die. He says he may have to fight to be leader but does not have the strength. The company offers to fight on his behalf.

As they pass through the encampment, Victor points out the various clans.

Surefoot Clan is allied with Broken Stone. As they pass Broken Stone, Victor separates from the company for a moment to enter the clan pavilion to much commotion and cheering. His cousin Tong greets him and tells how he has been outmaneuvered by Akadela for leadership on a technicality.

Victor rejoins the company and they go into the ziggurat to speak with the clan leaders.

Clan Leaders

Akadela and Tyron give eachother a furtive look as Victor enters the room. Clearly they are in on the conspiracy. They object to his challenge and the company as his champions. After much boasting it is agreed that the Hook and Claw Clan and the Jagged Fangs Clan will fight the champions of the Broken Stone Clan.

The company walks up to the top of the ziggurat and takes position. Battle begins.

Ziggurat 1

Enri and Regina take on the left flank while Vashta presses forward and takes on his demonic form. He then invokes Armor of Agathys to surround himself with energy that damages adjacent enemies throughout the encounter. Kriv breathes acid on Tyron’s group, marking them all. Nor and Kriv use Vashta’s form to create a chokepoint while they take on two werewolves from Akadela’s group.

Regina continues to use her Twin Shot power with silver arrows to prevent the lycanthropes from regenerating. Kriv continues to wear down the werewolves, invoking Wicked Fang’s daily 13 ongoing damage against one of them. The company is harried by Akadela’s illusionist who deals massive damage from a safe range. Enri releases her (chain lightning or fireball?) to hit three enemies. Vashta takes too much melee damage and falls unconscious. Kriv moves up gradually to assist but before he can administer first aid to Vashta he is hit by several attacks and ongoing damage that knocks him unconscious. Enri administers a healing potion to Kriv.

Ziggurat 2

After the battle, Victor gives a speech. He tells the gathering how the Jagged Fangs have been in league with Querelian. The crowd growls angrily. He decrees the following:

  1. The Jagged Fangs are outlawed. They have until daybreak to be sponsored by another clan or leave the valley. Otherwise they face justice.
  2. Victor will work with the new Hook and Claw Clan leader to allow trade between the Eladrin and the forest lycanthropes.
  3. Lost and Found is inducted into the Broken Stone Clan
  4. The gateway to the mortal realm to the south is out of bounds to all lycanthropes.

XP/GP Summary
1250XP/5=250XP each for saving Victor Mazan
2350XP/5=470XP each for ziggurat battle
1250XP/5=250XP each for stopping Querelian
+2 Staff of Elemental Prowess for Enri
250GP Fomorian Bas Relief for Enri
250GP Werewolf Bone Pipe for Vashta
118GP to Enri
116GP to Vashta
116GP to Kriv
-100GP from Kriv to shorten Raise Dead ritual
-100GP from Nor to shorten Raise Dead ritual
Broken Stone Clan medallion for each PC

Bark at the Moon, Part III

The company hears the faint sound of a flute playing somewhere south of the gateway and decide to investigate. As they pass through the forest they find small hoofprints and blood stains but passage becomes more difficult. The trees grow more closely to one another. Branches weave together. The company is having trouble finding their way through without injury.

They come to a clearing but discover that Vashta is no longer with them. He has become lost in the forest. The flute goes silent. Kriv calls out, “We know you’re here Pohr, come on out.”

Pohr tells them that he now knows they are working in the best interests of his mistress, and comes out of hiding. He has been playing his flute to help heal from their last encounter. The company is able to find out that he has been sent here by his mistress to observe their progress. He agrees to wait for them at the gateway, and the company sets out back through the forest.

They are attacked by two Displacer Beasts!

Tentacular Spectacular

The beasts are almost too much for the company to take on. Thohand is nearly killed.

The sound of something large crashing through the forest frightens off one of them, and the party uses the distraction to finish off the other.

Everyone turns to see a stampede of three Spire Horn Behemoths heading right for them!


The company decides to leave the area. They climb over a large felled tree and return to the gateway to find Pohr there, waiting.

They leave Pohr behind to heal and set out for the werewolf settlement to the north.

The settlement is deserted. There is a stone bridge at the settlement that crosses the river to Mithrendril, the city of the Eladrin. The bridge has been barricaded. The riverbanks to the east are staked and Eladrin soldiers can be seen milling about on the other side near a watchtower.

They find the dead body of Victor Mazen on an altar surrounded by flowers. It appears that his body has been magically preserved somehow. Enri casts Speak to the Dead using some ritual components from Kriv. They are able ask Victor one question: Who killed you? Victor tells them he was killed by Akadala the Yellow Fang and her clan of Jagged Fangs whose lair lies to the east. Victor tells them that Querelian and Akadala are working together to start a war between the lycanthropes and the Eladrin.

The company is unable to decide whether to (a) take Victor’s body to the Eladrin city to try to stop the war or (b) to go after the Jagged Fangs. Vashta’s voice, strangely altered, speaks from out of the air and suggests they follow the Jagged Fangs.

They head east through the forest with Bandit in the lead. After a difficult journey Bandit stops the party just before they see a small campfire beyond the edge of the forest.

They see two werewolves reclining by the fire, a wereboar, a Dire Boar and a Howling Hag.
Battle begins.

Jagged Fangs

The company is frequently harried by the Hag who is able to blast each party member with psychic damage on their turn. Kriv and Regina deal out massive amounts of damage while Thohand and Enri swing their silvered weapons into every lycanthrope they can, halting their regeneration.

The wereboar jumps up on the Dire Boar and uses it to trample Enri and knocks her unconscious. Kriv is able to stabilize her in the nick of time and Thohand administers first aid to help her regain health.

Eventually the company is victorious, all foes slain. They find the lair devoid of clues and find nothing to help them stop Querelian. They realize they should have kept at least one of the creatures alive for questioning.

Covered with blood and completely exhausted, they have no idea what to do next.

XP/GP Summary:
1250XP/5=250 for Displacer Beasts & Spire Horn Behemoths
1500XP/5=300 for Jagged Fangs
50gp/2 for Kriv & Enri
Amber 100gp for Enri
Healing potion for Enri
Garnet 100gp for Kriv


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