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The Caron Campaign 
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post The Caron Campaign
This is a campaign I ran in 2006 when I was visiting Chicago. I'll start

with character back stories and then run through the campaign diary.

Since I got back to Detroit in 2007 the campaign has crawled forward

due to how hard it is for us all to get together. If any one is interested in

C&C in the Detroit area, let me know. I would like to start a Detroit based

campaign set in the same home brew world.

David


Mon Jul 09, 2007 2:05 am
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Red Cap
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Posts: 210
Post Elf Ranger Back Story
Aislyn of Sapir it is lost in the depths of time, even to the

long lived Elves, as to how and when they came to live on this world.

The oldest among you speak of their ancestors telling them of a home

world that is a paradise that they were abruptly torn from by capricious

gods. For a while this world seemed a paradise. Elves shared the world

with beasts and fey creatures. The Elves call this the Idyllic Age.

This age came to a horrible end when out of the Chaos Lands fell

creatures ended the Elvish idyll. There was a great slaughter among the

Elves and evil ruled the world. The survivors hid themselves

in the deepest woods and learned powerful magic which

was much easier to learn on this world than the old

home world. This age of defeat and seclusion is called

the Bitter Age.

After a thousand years of darkness the Elves were ready

to retake their place in the world and as they boiled

out of the forests led by their most powerful mages

they found that the evil creatures were already under

assault by Dwarves. They too had been ripped from their

home world by the gods, and they joined the Elves in

the War of Vengeance. The two races working together

were unstoppable, and the fell creatures were driven from

the fair places of the world. Not being satisfied with

this the Elves and Dwarves decided to cleanse the Chaos

Lands of evil. Great armies were outfitted and powerful

magics prepared. They marched off to great fanfare and

with hope of ridding this world of evil. They disappeared

into the Chaos Lands and for 250 years the world knew peace

and prosperity. The great armies may have disappeared,

but apparently they had succeeded as the Elves and Dwarves worked

together to build a world spanning civilization untroubled by evil.

This rapturous time came to a horrible end when out

of the Chaos Lands armies of even more horrible fell creatures descended

on the forests of the Elves and the excavations of the Dwarves. Most

foul was that these evil armies were led by the Elves and Dwarves who

had years before entered into the Chaos Lands to rid the world of evil.

They had been twisted into the Black Elves, the Red Dwarves, and things

even more foul. They are known as the Twisted Ones and they trouble the

world even to this day. The Mad Armies led by the Twisted Ones were

eventually defeated at great cost. A second Idyllic Age dawned as the

Halflings appeared in the world. They also were ripped from their home

by the capricious gods.

The sages among the Elves and Dwarves studied carefully

the history of their people and aided by great magic came to understand

that that this world waxes and wanes between chaos and order. They

surmised that after a thousand years of idyll, evil would rise again out

of the Chaos Lands to trouble the lives of the Dwarves, Elves and

Halflings. The Chaos Watch was founded, being the Elvish Order of the

Vigilant, the Dwarvish Unbreakable Stone, and the Halfling Warders of

the Bounds. They felt prepared for the next horror to arise from the

Chaos Lands.

To Elven, Dwarven, and Halfling shock and consternation, sowing

confusion that reins until this day, at the appointed time rather than

an invasion of evil from the Chaos Lands, men appeared in the world.

They arrived on great oared ships telling stories of being tossed by

horrible storms and when the end seemed near suddenly the waters became

calm and they found themselves in a world not their own. The capricious

gods had struck again.

The Elves took pity on these refugees and taught them

much. The Dwarves mistrusted the Humans and became estranged from their

Elven allies. They were certain that the Humans were the latest wave of

evil, and counseled making war on them. The Dwarves left the Chaos

Watch and the Unbreakable Stone was abolished. Over this issue the

Elves and Dwarves disagreed and occasionally came to blows. Finally they

were reconciled when a wave of fell creatures attacked the mighty

Dwarven excavations from below. The Elves, Halflings, and Humans rushed

to help, but the Dwarves were grievously lessened and many of their

excavations were abandoned to evil before the invasion was defeated.

There followed a series of Human Barbarian invasions from the Chaos

Lands. The Elves came to learn that these were ripped from

the same world as the sea faring Humans but at different times and

brought here at the same time. These Barbarians devastated the Elves

and the Halflings in the forests and plains. The Chaos Watch was

broken. The sea faring Humans who built walled port cities withstood

the Barbarian assault, and in time after many bloody wars came to

conquer them and construct Empires that rivaled those of the Idyllic

Ages. The Humans, advised by surviving Elves, even saw the wisdom of

reforming the Chaos Watch. Humans, unfortunately, are constantly

restless and nothing they do seems to last. Eventually their great

Empire, centered on the city of Mora, descended into Civil War and

succumbed at the hands of yet another invasion by Barbarian Humans, and

the watch on the Chaos Lands sleeps again.

From an early age such stories stirred your blood. It seemed

clear that you are destined to be a member of the Order of the Vigilant.

The mages who lead your clan cast predictive magic on you, and despite

muttering that their vision was clouded by something they did not

understand they agreed that you would best serve the Elves by training

as a member of the Order. It was five years ago that you left your

father, Alfre, and your mother, Vessa, in the Elven metropolis of Sapir

to train with the Order. Your mentor is Mortain, who affects a sour

disposition, but as you have come to realize is by nature cheerful. As

you hear his stories you begin to realize that he fought in the

Barbarian Wars, and was a Captain in the Moran Army until the Moran

Empire could no longer defend the Elven lands of the Northern Forest.

You train far from home in the Galban Hills just west of the

human city of Venga. The Jura mountains separate the cultivated lands

around the

city from the Northern Forest, the realm of the Elves. You spent many

long months patrolling the Wild Mountains that form the eastern border

of the Elvish Northern Kingdom north of Venga. You learned the ways of

the Humanoids (kobolds, orcs, etc.) and Mortain trained you well in how

to fight and defeat them. The Elven way of war is to remain hidden and

strike your enemy when he least expects it. You can spend weeks

surviving off the bounty of the

forest, tracking your foe, leading him astray, and then silently

finishing him off. After a recent arduous patrol Mortain tells you that

he has no more to teach you. The clan council must decide what to do

with you. You and Mortain return to Sapir, you reunite with your proud

parents, and meet with the clan council. The mages are even more

puzzled now than they were five years ago. All they can see is clouded

by powerful magic, but they council that you remain in the Order of the

Vigilant. All others agree and is it coincides with your wish it is

decided. Mortain takes you to the headquarters of the Order where a

female Commander called Turola meets you and Mortain. Mortain, Turola,

and you review your skills and accomplishments. She looks weary and ponders long in

silence. Finally she gets up and begins to pace about the room and

talking rapidly, "We have so many problems on the Eastern border. You

two well know that Wild Mountains are filled with evil. Fortunately

they do not seem to be organized, so we can afford to send one as

talented as Aislyn somewhere more pressing. Venga is a problem. Not

only are the humans encroaching on our territory, but something

unspeakable is stirring in that city. I have people on that. The mages

have been

squawking about this." She pulls out a 1.5 inch tall gold statue,

encrusted with semi-precious stones of a foot soldier and slightly

taller statue of a round castle tower clearly of similar make. "Take

these and go see Master Thorakil. He will explain. They want someone to

go to Caron to investigate. Apparently they can be quite dangerous in

the wrong hands. They have already caused some trouble here."

Mortain takes you away from the Commander and says, "This is not

good. When the mages want something done and do not want to do it

themselves it usually means big trouble."

Master Thorakil is found in a well appointed

lab. He is a wizened figure and you think he may be the oldest Elf you

have ever met. Mortain is very differential as he introduces you to

Thorakil and explains Commander Turola's orders. Thorakil mutters,

looks at a crystal ball, and chuckles. "I see why Turola wants to send

you. If anyone is going to get to the bottom of this it is going to be

you. You are awfully green to be sent to a cess pool like Caron, but

the signs are clear. These little statues have quite a history.

About two hundred years ago I was working late in the lab, and suddenly

they teleported in. Needless to say I was shocked. I spent the next

twenty years or so investigating. Whoever built these was a genius."

He pauses, fingering one of the statues, "Completely insane, but a

genius. Apparently there are 30 more statues like this. They are all

magically linked. When they are brought together, placed on a grid in a

certain way, and moved about according to some simple but arbitrary

rules, they activate a teleport spell. As you move them more and more

following the rules the spell gets stronger and stronger allowing the

teleport to go farther. Genius. It would be very useful to gather the

whole set." As he tells this story he seems to get more and more

excited with his voice rising and gesticulating wildly to emphasize his

points. Despite his excitement he does not seem capable of rising from

his chair. "Unfortunately something happened to them. I think they got

hit by a burst of magical energy just as they were full of a very long

ranged teleport and it caused their magical circuits to short out. I

have no idea what it might do now. It could be very dangerous. Besides

their main function they have secondary functions. The little one and

the big one both seek out the other statues. Here, take the little one

in your hand, and close your eyes." You do so and in your mind's eye

you see a ghostly arrow pointing at Thorakil. As you open your eyes you

see that Thorakil is holding the other statue. He continues, ignoring

your bewildered look, "You get more range on the seeker when you hold

more of them in your hands. I managed to enhance

the effect, and was able to locate 29 of the other 30 statues. Then I

forgot

about it. I figured that one of the statues got destroyed in whatever

shorted them out. With one destroyed no one would be able make them

work. The big one can cast a Haste, without any bad effects, once a

day. With the damage it works kind of randomly. It seems that three of

the other 30 are specially linked to the big one and if you have them

together you can cast more Hastes. Very valuable in combat. Following

me?" he asks, but

does not miss a beat waiting for your answer.

"Just last month one of my assistants decided to investigate

them again. That is already a bad sign. Powerful magic items have a way

of manipulating those who come into contact with them for their own

purposes. My assistant got obsessed with the statues and tried to steal

them. He is still with the healers recovering from the protections I

put on these when I put them away so long ago. He'll never do magic

now. Hopefully he will be able to walk again. Those healers can work

miracles. Anyway, that caused me to check them again and I discovered

that many of the other 30 statues were concentrated in Caron which is

not where they were last time I looked hundreds of years ago."

He stops his rant, realizing that he is barely making sense, and

says slowly, "These things are gathering in Caron, and someone, you, has

to go there and investigate. I cannot send an apprentice. It is likely

that a mage would be taken over by the statues and start doing who knows

what. I cannot travel myself as in the last hundred years I have grown

too infirm to travel." His words begin to tumble out, faster and faster.

"That bitch Turola is only willing to send an apprentice, but I

convinced her it had to be you. Something big is swirling around you,

and this could be it. Gather as many of these statues as you can by any

means, fair or foul, and get them back here. This thing is very

powerful. We cannot let it fall into the wrong hands, I have to have it

to be sure it won't hurt the Elves. You will need help. Take these two

statues to help find the others and this letter to an old friend of

mine,

Leofwine, a great mage in Caron. He can help. Go. As soon as possible.

I have not got much time left." As he finishes he slumps down in his

chair, and his eyes close. While you think it is impossible he seems to

look even older than when you first came in.

Mortain grabs your arm and drags you out of the magic lab. You

start to ask questions, but Mortain motions you to be quiet and

continues to hustle you out of the mages area and back towards the

chapter house of the Order. You note a look you have never before seen

on his face-terror. There he continues to not allow you to speak and

drags you into a room deep in the center of the building. You note that

the room is lined with metal, and finally he lets you speak. He ignores

whatever you say and finally responds, "I had no idea this what they

intended for you. Thorakil knows more than he is telling you. If he

thinks this thing is dangerous then why not just destroy the ones he

gave you? He must want whatever it is they can do. He can't send his

own people, so he bullied Turola into sending you. No one argues with

Thorakil. I would tell you to look at that letter, but if a mage

apprentice nearly got killed messing with something Thorakil thinks is

important, he has likely made it sure that no one but his friend in

Caron can open that letter. You are going to need the help of someone

you can trust. I too know a friend in Caron. She is a priestess of

Artemis called Darthia. Tell her I am your mentor and she will help in

any way she can. If you are searching for more of these things, then

someone else is likely searching for the two you will have. Hold them

in this." He gives you a heavy metal box. "While in here no one will

be detect the magic these things radiate. I am sorry how this worked

out. I thought they were going to move you to deal with the troubles on

the Jura, but you can never tell. Let me help you pack for the

journey."

Mortain spends the rest of the day helping you prepare for the

journey. He will not let you ask questions about the statues shushing

you whenever your conversation strays that direction. At the end of the

day he tells you to say your good byes to your family, and that he will

meet you first thing in the morning to start you on your journey. "Say

nothing of this to anyone," Mortain warns as you part.

Your family continues to gush over you, which is a welcome

respite from the unease which is beginning to over take you. You sleep

fitfully and in the morning meet Mortain. You ride out towards the

west. He offers much advice about how to get along in human cities.

Stick close to the clerics of Artemis who are predominately elves.

Elven mages are highly respected by humans, but can never be trusted as

their long association with magic and veneration by humans makes them

arrogant and

haughty. Rarely will they lift a finger to help a fellow elf without

expecting something in return. Elves can usually be found in rural

areas making their living as hunters and foresters. Mortain escorts you

to the eastern border of the Elven lands. You arrive late in the

afternoon and see the ridge of the Jura Mountains rising out of the

Northern Forest. The Elves manning the border crossing advise you to

end your journey for the day here. "Night is coming and something in

the Mountains and creeping into the Woods is merciless with our folk.

Stay with us for the night, and push on to Venga first thing in the

morning." You and Mortain take the advice and learn that over the last

20 years or so Elves have been disappearing near the Jura. It started

with single Elves disappearing randomly, but in recent years it has

grown into entire families taken from their tree houses. No one has

ever seen anything and the mages council that the evil stems from

something in the city of Venga, but all efforts have failed to find

anything and some of those brave enough

to try to find out what is going on in Venga have also disappeared.

They tell you not to tarry even a day there and continue on to Caron.

The next day you and Mortain crest the pass and see Lake Venga

spread below you glittering in the morning sun. You see the city

clustered around its southern end. Mortain says his good byes and

wishes you good fortune, adding

that he suspects that you will need it. You head down the pass, the

forest gives way to fields well tended by Halflings. You pass over the

great bridge over the River Nor and into the city. Despite what you

have been told the city is bright, clean, and bustling. While there are

few Elves, no one bats an eye as

you ride through the town and catch the southern road that leads to

Caron. You pass out of the Vale of Venga and back into the Galban Hills.

On this side of the Nor the Galban Hills are ruled by the Duke of Galba

from Castle Caron around which the city spreads. At first the Duke's

lands look much like the Elven lands in which you trained, but gradually

you find an increasing number of villages in the river valleys amid the

hills. Mostly there are humans, but many villages have a Dwarven smith,

enclaves of halfling farmers are not uncommon, and the occasional single

Elf or Elven family can be found on the fringes. There is often a shrine

to Artemis and by asking there you can find shelter for the night with

Elves eager for news of their own kind. Failing that the larger

villages have Inns where your coin is accepted without question.

After a week of travel you see Caron rising above the trees.

Caron sits on a low, gently sloping, cone shaped mountain. You pass

through city gates without minimal trouble and ask after Leofwine. He

is apparently well known as you are immediately directed to him. On the

north side of town is an up scale commercial district surrounded by the

homes of the rich and powerful Leofwine has an ostentatious magic items

shop there, and as you enter a well dressed human asks if he can help

you. You tell him that you want to see Leofwine, which elicits

laughter, but when you hand him the letter from Thorakil, he suddenly

goes rigid, and escorts you to the rear of the shop. He gently knocks

on a heavy, ornate door, and a commanding voice bids entry. Inside is a

room empty except for a large desk, behind which sits a human who is

dressed as in a cliche costume of a wizard. "What is it?" he asks

impatiently. Your escort hands him the letter. Leofwine's eyes grow

wide and he snaps at his flunky, "Leave us."

When you are alone he takes off his pointy hat, pulls off his

star covered robe, and turns to you. "Just the thing to disrupt my day.

A dust covered elf from the sticks. Still when Thorakil says to pay

attention to something, one is forced to pay attention. He is right

about this. Something is stirring with Kuttner's Game. I have seen one

of the pieces recently. Of course I did not notice what it was, but

Thorakil knows exactly the right spell to jog the memory, break through

the fog that the game is throwing to stay unnoticed, and to make me want

to help you when I would rather do something else to you." This last is

followed by a creepy leer, that induces a shudder in you. "I was seeing

a woman who got a job with a hustler doing a cheap magic shown down in

the Low Square Since she was so fine I did sully myself by going down to

that section of town to take a look. He calls himself Kalabash and he

has a piece. A knight I think. He does the show every afternoon. If

you hurry you can catch the next one. Here is your letter back.

Thorakil says that I will forget all about this, and that two more times

you can use this letter to get someone to help you. He advises you not

to see me again, as I am a nasty piece of work. Go now, as the effect

wears off quickly," he stands holding out the letter to you.

You snatch it from him and flee the shop as quickly as possible.

Confusion boils through your head, but you follow your lead and ask

directions to the Low Square. You see the seedier side of the city as

you descend the mountain and arrive at a square crammed with market

stalls. Off to one end an ornate wagon proclaiming "Kalabash the Great"

forms the backdrop to a stage. Already a crowd is gathering in

anticipation of a show. You tie up your horse and join the crowd.


Mon Jul 09, 2007 2:13 am
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Mogrl

Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 20660
Location: Arizona and St Louis
Post 
Nice! Very nice. Looking forward to more. Welcome to the boards. Again?
_________________
The Ruby Lord, Earl of the Society

Next Con I am attending: http://www.neoncon.com/

My House Rules: http://www.freeyabb.com/phpbb/viewtopic ... llordgames

_________________
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.


Mon Jul 09, 2007 7:55 am
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Halfling Rogue Backstory
Thanks for the encouragement. I lurk on the boards. I will post the

back stories one by one to build some tension. Then on to the campaign.

You are Rivery Gammond, a halfling from the village of Crofton,

which is somewhere in the Galban Hills. It is a sleepy, tiny place with a

petty ruler called Roger DeLace who lorded it over the cowed locals.

There was not a permanent contingent of Guardians of Galba, just a small

tower that was visited once a year by a contingent of troops whose arrival

always heralded the dreaded tax collection. Besides the excitement of tax

collection the wanderings of beasts were the only moments out of bounds of

law and order. During the spring, summer, and fall a small fair was the

only time that visitors from outside the local area would be seen.

Crofton is not along any of the major trade routes. Unusually Crofton is

home to a large contingent of halflings in the village which did make for

well cleared fields and tables groaning with food. You never knew your

father and your mother was mean and bitter. You had an older sister

called Hazel who married young to get out of her mother's house. You had

a better idea. At the close of one the fairs you broke into Roger's

manor, helped yourself to some small valuable objects and hitched a ride

with the departing fairsmen out of town. Eventually like most of the

restless in Galba you ended up in the teeming capitol of Caron. To enjoy

the pleasures of the capitol takes money and your haul eventually ran out.

As you helped yourself to the five fingered discount to continue your high

living you were caught by Osburn, a fellow halfling who brought you into

the Guild.

Osburn and his friends refined your raw skills and gave you a

support network of spies for good scores, of bought town guards and

magistrates to be sure that the legal system will not be a problem, safe

houses to lay low when the heat is on, and trusted fences to turn your

booty into ready cash. They seem to have steered you into jobs in the

ritzy north quarter of Caron on the Upper Scarp. Apparently the Guild has

turned a private security service that protects many of the homes in the

area, thus the jobs have been simple breaking and entering. The hardest

part is usually getting over compound walls with the large sack of booty

taken from the main house. While the money is good you are getting a bit

bored.

Your last job went well and you went to Alwine's Book Shop, which

is your usual fence. Alwine is a plump human who for some reason has

taken a liking to you. You enter and Alwine greets you, "Kid, good to see

you. It's been too long. I pay you too well, and you don't read enough

to visit between jobs." You make some chit-chat as he sorts out the

booty. He stops at an ornate puzzle wooden puzzle box. "You open it?" he

asks gruffly. You have not, but your experience is that these things are

usually a waste of time. Valuables are usually better protected than

this; puzzle boxes usually have valueless trinkets or worthless objects of

great sentimental value to the former owner. The boxes themselves are

usually more valuable that what is inside. This one is not particularly

nice and you cannot recall why you grabbed it. Alwine works at the box,

mutters, "Not been opened in a long while." and exclaims in triumph as he

manages to open the box. Out falls a silver, semi-precious stone

encrusted two inch high statue of a Priest of Zeus. It is faintly

glowing. Alwine turns the silver statue over in his hands, his eyes grow

wide, and he sharply draws in his breath. He discards the box, gathers

the statue in his right hand, mutters something inaudible as he passes his

left hand over the statue, you notice a ring on his finger glow brightly

as it passes over, and the statue left behind is glowing brightly.

Alwine looks up at you very gravely and says, "I know this is breaking

the rules, but where did you get this?" You and he haggle back and

forth, but you eventually reveal where you found the box. He asks you

stay put and leaves the room. You hear him muttering and note that he

is moving about his shop apparently rummaging among the books. He

returns placing the statue on the desk in front of you.

"The people who had this, probably had no idea what it is," he

begins. "There is no record that they collect magic items or dabble in

the arcane arts. I probably would not have noticed if I had not seen

another one recently. Can you read?" You nod, and he continues, "I knew

you were ignorant, rather than stupid. Read this, and come back to talk."

He hands you a book, which is a sheaf of scrolls bound together.

Back in your garrote you open the scroll. It is not very ornate,

in contrast to most scrolls you have seen, but is written in a bold, clear

hand. To give you some context the Black Duke was the ruler of the Galban

Hills about 200 years ago. His rule is generally thought to have been

benign, but it was marred by a terrible plague, thus earning him his

alias.

The Game of Kuttner by Gaetan of Caron

Among the Black Duke's most heinous crimes was the waste of

public money on a series of insane arcane projects. Criminal not only

because of the lost money, but also in how he treated those Sages,

Wizards, and Illusionists who took up the work. Many came from the other

side of the world attracted by the Duke's reputation as a philanthropist

and the rumors that were spread by Guardians of Galba of the altruistic

nature of the projects. They came to cure disease, protect the innocent

from evil, and make the Galban Hills a paradise on earth. It was called

the Great Work. Instead they were made virtual slaves forced to work on

projects meant to flatter the insane Duke. I was one of these

unfortunates. Trained in Caron by the Wizards Guild I was thrilled to

join the Great Work even if my effort was limited to assisting the senior

researchers. It was only after years of being locked in Castle Caron

that I came to realize the truth. I saw effort diverted from the Great

Work to the petty, and set back or failure being rewarded with death or

fates that to this day I shudder to recall.

One of the most impressive of these Sages was one called Kuttner

who came from the farthest east. His skin was brown and he spoke the

common tongue with a accent such as I have never heard before or since.

While Kuttner came to cure disease he was soon working on the Elixir of

Life, the legendary arcane process that grants eternal life. One thing

the Black Duke feared was death as he knew his likely fate was eternal

torture in the nether regions. Kuttner who knew much of potions and

elixirs was able to achieve early success by making Mayflies survive one

week instead of the usual one day. Kuttner's Elixir of Life Extension

soon became the Duke's drink of choice. All others working on the Elixir

of Life were killed, "To encourage the others." I joined Kuttner as an

assistant at this time and being one of the few surviving who understood

magic Kuttner confided closely in me.

First he told me that his Mayflies were simply a trick. He had

purchased a Time Slow scroll which on the short lived Mayflies extended

their short lives. On humans the effect of Time Slow is maddening as it

caused the target to be out of sync with the surroundings. Probably this

was why the Black Duke grew increasingly insane and incoherent in the last

years of his reign. In any case Kuttner confided in me that he had a

plan to escape and return to his homeland. He would have to build a

magical device that would enable him to teleport away upon completion.

Key was to have the power of the device build gradually as it would not

attract the attention of the Duke's spies and rats. He also planned to

base the device on the game of chess which was a passion of the Duke's.

Basically the pieces of the game would each be magical, and as the game

was played with the pieces the power would build until at a certain point

the teleport gate would open. The longer the game was played the longer

the distance the teleport would be. The details of the last move, what

piece and in which direction, would control the location of the target of

the teleport.

Kuttner's plan was sheer genius. In its execution the staff of

the Duke's Great Work were kept busy manufacturing the chess pieces, one

side in gold the other in silver. They were encrusted with semi-precious

stones which were used to hold the pieces of the spells that created the

magical effects. Enchanters were constantly busy as each gem had a spell

fragment embedded within. Craftsmen who earlier had prepared the gems and

statues had to then precisely and carefully place the gems in an exact

order and with precision timing on the statues. Failures were legion and

we spent more than five years on the project as Kuttner kept the Duke at

bay with Time Slow and steadily producing chess pieces that had

demonstrable effects.

[There follows a detailed description of the chess pieces, what

each gem is enchanted with, and the effect and use of the individual

pieces. If you do not know there two colors (silver and gold) each with 8

pawns, 2 knights, 2 bishops, 2 rooks, 1 queen, and 1 king). This section

is summarized in the following table:

Type-Look-Effect

Pawn-Foot Soldier-

Detects other pieces by glowing and user sees a

ghostly arrow or arrows which points towards other

pieces with a length indicating the distance away.

1 pawn detects to 100 feet. 2-3 pawns to 1000

feet. 4-7 pawns to 10,000 feet (2 miles), 8-15

pawns to 100,000 feet (20 miles), and 16+ pawns to

1,000,000 feet (200 miles).

Knight-Mounted Knight-

Blink as the 3rd Level Wizard Spell, 1 Knight

1/day, 2-3 Knights 2/day, 4 Knights 4/day.

Also detects other pieces and can be combined

with other pieces and pawns for this effect.

Bishop-Priest of Zeus-

Spider Climb as the 1st Level Wizard Spell. Use

as Knight.

Rook-Castle-

Haste as 3rd Level Wizard Spell not including bad

effects of age and possible permanent loss of hit

points. Use as Knight.

Queen-Lady-

All effects of Knight, Bishop, and Rook. 1 Queen

4/day, 2 Queens 8/day.

King-King-

Mass Suggestion as 6th Level Wizard Spell. 1

King 4/day, 2 Kings 8/day. Also detects as

pawns and can be combined with other pieces and

pawns for this effect.

After this section there is a description of how to use the full

device. Basically the pieces have to be arrayed as if on chess board as

if at the start of a chess game. The board must be flat. Below is a

cartoon (N = Knight, E = empty square):

R N B Q K B N R

P P P P P P P P

E E E E E E E E

E E E E E E E E

E E E E E E E E

E E E E E E E E

P P P P P P P P

R N B Q K B N R

Then a standard game of chess is played. After 10 legal moves the

teleport gate can be opened next to the chess game. The maximum distance

of teleportation is controlled by how many moves are made:

Moves Distance

10 100 feet

11-12 1000 feet

13-14 10,000 feet (2 miles)

15-18 100,000 feet (20 miles)

19-26 1,000,000 feet (200 miles)

27-42 10,000,000 feet (2000 miles)

43+ Gaeton is not sure what happens

The direction of teleportation is controlled by picking up the king of

appropriate color that is due to move, touching it to the center of the

board, and them moving it in the direction of the desired teleportation.

The board limits define the maximum range and the king is moved the

appropriate distance on, above, or below the board to define the direction

of the teleportation.

If an illegal move is made or the king moved not in the

prescribed manner the gate will not be opened and the game has to started

over from the beginning. The chess set automatically also passes through

the gate as it is being used. The chess set works once per day and takes

a full 24 hours to work again after one successful use.

Gaeton then spends a considerable amount of time warning about

the dangers of teleportation to an unknown location, etc. The text

continues:]

I will never forget the fateful day when the chess set was

finally ready. Kuttner displayed much more discipline than I am capable

of, and waited until late at night to do a test. Kuttner assembled the

pieces, played a short game and stepped into the portal. I was amazed and

excited that after our long years of work that it actually worked. The

chess set followed him in and disappeared from our lab. Mages showed up

within the hour and questioned me about what was going on in the lab. I

told them a well practiced story that Kuttner and I had prepared in the

previous days. It seem to convince the mages who left, but threatened to

return in the morning. Kuttner awoke me early. He declared that the

chess set had been a complete success, and that he would be leaving that

evening. He thanked me for my long service and told me where I could find

a reward. At this point the alarm was raised in Castle Caron. The Duke

had been murdered in the night by someone who had some how managed to

enter his private chambers.

It was a tense day as chaos gradually took over in the castle.

The Duke's secret police were settling accounts, but the spell of fear

that they had brought over the Duke's household and the land was broken by

the Duke's death. Servants and courtiers banded together and fought

pitched battles with the overwhelmed guards. Looting broke out. Kuttner

seemed to be well prepared and using magical devices plus the unswerving

loyalty of those of the Great Work we defended our lab. Finally as night

fell, an attack led by mages threatened to break us. Kuttner abandoned us

at a critical moment to power up the chess set, and his leaving allowed

the mages to penetrate into the lab and begin to wreak their vengeance on

us. They spared me and forced me to lead them to Kuttner's private

chambers. He was finishing his game, the portal appeared, and he began

to step in. A mage launched some sort of fireball at the fleeing Kuttner,

I heard him scream, there was a loud explosion, and all of us crumpled as

a wave of magical energy swept over us.

I woke hours later as morning broke amid a scene of carnage.

Many of the mages were killed as the magical backlash they had unleashed

overloaded and exploded their brains. I had a terrible headache.

Apparently I was saved by my lack of magical talent. Of Kuttner I could

find no trace. The chess set was apparently the center of the explosion.

I found a pawn and a king in the wreckage. I fled the castle where order

had completely collapsed. It did not take long for the city to also

descend into chaos as the long suffering people realized that the Black

Duke was dead and a general rising erupted. I found myself "rescued" by

the Guild, and eventually forced to reveal all I knew of the Great Work

that had been going in the Castle. Apparently they had known for some

time that Great Work was a lie and burned to know the truth of the matter.

The king and pawn that I saved from the Castle never pointed to

another piece for as long as I had them. They have been taken from me and

I do not know what happened to them. I never heard anything of Kuttner

again.

I swear by Skyfather Zeus that this is a true and accurate

account set down by my own hand in my own words.

Gaeton of Caron

You stare in amazement at one of the Bishop's of Kuttner's game.

You barely sleep and the next day hurry back to Alwine's shop. He ushers

you into an office, and looks at you with a serious visage. "I don't have

to tell you how valuable what you found is. Of course the value grows

with more pieces. Notice yours is glowing." It is, but it is hard to

notice in the bright office. "Hold it and close your eyes." You do and

see in your mind's eye a short arrow pointing at Alwine. As you open your

eyes you see that Alwine is holding similar statue of a foot soldier,

shorter than yours. "I have a Pawn. The Guild has more. Hold them both

and look again." You do and see a faint long arrow pointing towards the

south side of the city. "There is another piece. I have seen it, but it

did not realize what it was until I saw yours up close yesterday. There

is a guy called Kalabash, putting on some kind of show every afternoon in

the Low Square. I think he has a Knight that he uses in his act. He

also has one of the best pieces of tail I have seen in a long time working

with him. She brings in a big crowd. Take these, get down there, and

come back with the other piece. Don't talk about this to anyone. Not

your buddy Osburn, not your girl Lauret, and not the one you are cheating

on her with. Sherelle is it? She dances at the Golden Parrot?" You nod

feeling a tinge of fear that Alwine knows so much about your business.

"I'll have to catch her act. It must be true what the girls say about

halflings if you've two hot girls on the string, or maybe they like the

money I have been paying you. Well, if the wrong people, like the

Guardians or, the Gods help us, the Orphans, or someone even worse,

although I cannot imagine anyone worse, find out that some of Kuttner's

pieces are in circulation it would not be good."

You ask what he means by the Orphans, and he looks away with a look on

his face as if recalling a bad meal. "Thank the gods you don't know,

and pray to them if you ever find out, as they will be only ones who

could help you at that point. It is best not to speak of them."

He continues, "I'll make this worth your

while. It'll make any other score you've had look like chicken feed. Try

not to attract any attention. Good luck." You leave in a daze, clutching

the Bishop and Pawn, heading for the Low Square, and wondering what

exactly you have gotten yourself into.


Tue Jul 10, 2007 2:34 am
Profile
Mogrl

Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 20660
Location: Arizona and St Louis
Post 
I love the womanizing halfling! I don't think I have ever seen or heard of anyone playing a halfling like that! Great!
_________________
The Ruby Lord, Earl of the Society

Next Con I am attending: http://www.neoncon.com/

My House Rules: http://www.freeyabb.com/phpbb/viewtopic ... llordgames

_________________
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.


Tue Jul 10, 2007 6:07 am
Profile
Red Cap
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Human Cleric Back Story
Aurelia is the youngest daughter of Trevelyan and his wife Bodigga

Your father is the Vale Lord of Ashton, which is a prosperous

town located west of the City of Caron. As you have come to

realize your parents relationship must have been exceptional

as you have three brothers and two sister. One brother is slated

to inherit the Vale and the other two have joined the Guardians

of Galba in hopes of eventually be rewarded with their own Vale.

Your two older sisters have been married off in hopes of expanding

the family's holding. Even from an early age it seemed clear that

you were not going to fit into the mold your family has set. Your

father doted on you and said that he could never give you up to

a mere man. Perhaps this is what started your fascination with

the gods. Also the clerics identified you early has being one

of the rare individuals that possessed the talent to contact the

gods and preform miracles on their behalf.

Those great ones that dwell on lost Olympus are separated

from their children here. No one knows how humans came to this

place. The Elves say that the gods are capricious, which is certainly

true, and that Elves, Dwarves, Halflings, the fell creatures, and

everything else in this world have been brought here to amuse them.

No one really knows, but those with the talent and devotion to the

gods can preform miracles in their name even across the void that

separates us from them.

The king of the gods is Zeus the sky father who rules

Olympus and is the patron of nobles and controls the weather.

His wife, Hera, is the patron of mothers and families.

His brother Posiedon rules the seas and his other brother

Hades rules the lands of the dead. The sisters Athena, learning

and cities, Demeter, Agriculture and Halflings, and Artemis,

Nature and Elves, and brothers Ares, god of war, Hepheastus,

industry and Dwarves, and Hermes, travel and communication,

serve under their elders. Mother to all the gods is Hestia

who looks after hearth and home. Still powerful, but exiled

from Olympus are Aphrodite, Apollo, and Dionysus who have come

to be worshipped by barbarians and generally shunned in the

civilized lands. Note that this is basically the Greek myth, but

imagine that it has survived and been strongly buffeted by invasions

of barbarians driven insane by their contact with the chaos that

brought them across the void to this world. Those gods who were

most close associated with the excesses of the barbarians,

Dionysus patron of wine and excess, Apollo whose

clerics entered drug induced trances to vaguely prophesize about the

future, and Aphrodite who endorsement of unbridaled sexuality

have been driven by the others from Olympus. They are only

worshipped sureptiously along with the foreign gods of the

barbarians and the easterners. The remaining Olympians are

worshipped in the western lands. In even the smallest village

there is a shrine where sacrifices are made to Demeter for a

bountiful harvest, Skyfather Zeus for justice and good weather, Mother Hera

for healthy children, Poseidon for calm waters, Hades for safe

passage to the lands of the dead, Athena for wisdom, Artemis

for the animals and trees, Ares for prowess in battle, and

Hestia for a safe and happy home. Priests and Priestesses

dedicated to a god or goddess serve the needs of the people,

at least one in every village and a traveling corps to

insure that all the Olympians are represented to all the

people.

In these Galban Hills there is a great academy for the training

and education of the priests and priestesses in the town of

Thesala. Thesala is quite near the capitol, the great metropolis

of Caron. You entered the Olympian Academy when you were twelve

and have been there since, much to the pride of your parents.

Your love of knowledge and your sophistication led you to devote

yourself to Athena. Athena has many aspects. She is the patron

of knowledge and learning. Most of her devotees without the ability

to contact the goddess and perform miracles are trained as teachers

and large villages and towns have temples of Athena that act as schools.

Those, like you, with the ability and devotion to contact the goddess

study the ways of magic and try to understand the arcane knowledge

of the Elves and the fantastic mechanical constructions of the Dwarves.

You were quite adept in this area and you have learned Elvish and

Dwarvish to further your study of the arcane arts.

After ten years of study you were taken by your mentor Junya

to see the High Priest Ganz who runs those devotees of Athena who study

the arcane arts, called the Order of the Owls. The three of you discuss your training and your

future assignment. Ganz mentions an arcane mystery that is most intriguing.

"Kuttner was one of the mystics from the east who came to work on the

Black Duke's Great Work." To give some context the Black Duke ruled

the Galban Hills about 200 years ago. He is known as the Black Duke

as a horrible plague struck the area during his rule. The Great Work

was a magical and technical effort by the Duke to ease the suffering

of the people in the wake of the plague. You have been taught that

the Black Duke did his best to help the people in this time of horrible

troubles. "Apparently he was working on some sort healing or life

enhancing device. Something must have gone wrong as it seems it

never really worked, at least no one has ever heard of it beyond

what I have to tell you. I have here a plan, apparently written by

Kuttner himself, of what the device was meant to do, and how it was

supposed to have worked. Also we tracked down a component. Read this

and I will have you posted to Caron. You two talk to me before you

go. Be ready to move in a week."

He hands you a box in which is a faded manuscript and a

small silver statue encrusted with semiprecious stones of a foot soldier.

Over the next days you read the manuscript which is clearly a summary

of some more complete document:

Method of Desease Eradication and Life Enhancement

My earlier experiments have been quite successful at enhancing the

quality and length of life of small creatures such as insects and

mice. To further this and enhance the life of creatures as large

and as complex as humans a much larger device has to be built. The

magical power required is order of magnitudes beyond what can be

generated by even the most skilled single mage. The method is to

emulate many mages working together in concert to cast a very

powerful spell. Thus game pieces of various powers each represent

a mage and they interact with each other obeying simple rules

to produce an infinte array of increaslingly complex patterns

resulting in exponentially growing stored magical energy which can

be released to acheive the most powerful possible magical effects.

A human targeted by this device would have even the most horrific

desease, such as the Field Plague, cured. A healthy human would

have his life enhanced or extended, but this would not be the

primary purpose of the device. Limitations include the difficulty

and expense of manufacturing the device. Each game piece would

have to be manufactured by skilled artisans and made of noble

metals such as gold and silver. To control the magical energies

stored within them the pieces would have to be encrusted with a unique

pattern of magical nodes made from semiprecious stones. Each

node would have to be specifically enchanted in a specific order and

precisely emplaced to achieve the desired magical effect. Each

piece would be a unique construct and would most valuably include

specific magical effects to ensure that the piece continues in

working order. Another limitation is on how often the device

could be used. Such a large amount of magical energy would

take a certain amount of time to build up. I calculate that

each use would require 24 hours for the stored magical energy

to recharge. Thus when complete the device would be able to cure

or enhance one human each day.

[There follows a summary of the materials required to build the

device, a list of the skilled artesians and mages who would

be needed, an estimate of how long it would take, and the cost.

The estimate is the device would cost about 1M GP, take five

years to build, and occupy the efforts of about 10 mages,

4 precious metal smiths, and 4 jewelers. The document ends

with a signature in the script that you recognize to be used

in the far east. The name is Kuttner.]

You cannot help but be astonished. While the device

sounds amazing, the effort and expense required to create it

are astronomical. If the goal was to cure the Field Plague

it would be far more economical to train clerics than to build

Kuttner's device. It is beyond belief that anyone would make

such an effort. Yet the statue in the box exactly fits the

description of one of the pieces. Clearly someone at least

started on Kuttner's device.

Also in the box is a recent report from a mage in

the employ of the Olympian Academy. He notes that statue is encrusted

with 33 stones. 31 of them apparently activate

when in the presence of other parts of the device. The 32nd is always

active drawing on the natural magical energy around it. He has

forced this to turn on and it causes the statue to glow. He

guesses that this statue has some sort of light spell on it

which will activate when some certain condition is met. This

spell would get stronger if more parts of the device were nearby

this one. The 33rd is apparently turned on only when the device

is assembled, attempts to activate it have failed as it requires

more magical energy than can be supplied, and it apparently only

contains part of the complex spell that is the device's main

purpose. He cannot hazard a guess if it functions as described

in Kuttner's note as there is just not enough of the main spell

in this one small part to tell what it actually does.

He guesses that there must be 31 other parts and all

must have similar appearance encrusted with at least 33 precious

stones. He concludes that without more information or more parts

of the device it is impossible to figure out if it actually does

what Kuttner's note says it does. He suggests that further

investigations should take place in Caron. Probably some

records of the Great Work survived the events at the end of

the Black Duke's reign and could be found in the library of

Castle Caron or in the Library of the Temple of Athena.

On your next meeting with Ganz you are presented with

a letter of introduction to Biossay, the cleric who leads the

Order of the Owls

in Caron. You are told that within about six months you should

report what you have found about Kuttner's device.

You make a quick trip to Ashton where your parents are distressed

to learn that you are going to Caron. They warn that it is a wicked

place and that despite your noble blood you should avoid getting

involved with Duke's court at Castle Caron. Your father says,

"Many good men and women have come to ruin at court. They

get caught up in the petty intrigues and are destroyed, or worse

they get lost in the vices that run rapant. Stick to the scholars

in the Temples and University." Your mother tells you that no matter

what happens you can always come home. One of your brothers, Bancel,

is posted in Caron, and you should visit as soon as you can.

Your trip to Caron is a revelation. The squaler of the

lower city is a stark contrast to Castle Caron and the Temples

dedicated to the gods which occupy the top of mountain on which

Caron is built. It is raucous as Caron is a free city ruled by

its people owing to the Duke a troop of foot soldiers and the

proceeds of a tax on trade rather than the usual feudal service

obligation and 10% tithe from the harvest as is common

for most Vale Lords, such as your father.

You find your way to the Temple of Athena and meet Biossay.

When you tell him of your project and show him your statue. He seems

to zone out, and you have to grab him as he almost falls over.

After recovering he says, "Every few years someone digs up this

old story and wastes some acolytes time on it. Normally it is

harmless, they learn a great deal exploring the libraries and the

best students actually try some experiments. There is an undercurrent

of danger. Powerful magic items are dangerous, but Kuttner's

Device has apparently been broken so it was safe. But I think it is not

broken any more. Look what happened to me. Seeing your statue

I realize that I have seen another one recently. I had not noticed.

I suspect Kuttner's device, or someone who is trying to assemble it,

is trying to keep the other pieces hidden. Even though I

am familar with the story and had seen your statue before I failed

to remember anything when I saw another one. There is a conjuror

who calls himself Kalabash, and is using another of Kuttner's

statues in his show. He does it down in the Low Square every

afternoon. I happened to see it when I was ministering to the

poor in the Low city. You should go and have a look. At least

you will have something different to tell Ganz than the usual

stuff in the libraries. You should try to get a hold of the other

statue and I suspect that we will learn much more than we have

in years of library work. Get going now and you should

get down to the Low Square in time to catch the show."

After getting hasty instructions on how to get there, you

hurry from the Temple District, down the mountain, to the Low

Square. It is surrounded by the teeming slum of the lower city.

The square is crammed with market stalls selling all manner

of goods. Off to one end an ornate wagon proclaiming "Kalabash

the Great" forms the backdrop to a stage. Already a crowd is

gathering in anticipation of a show. Not knowing what else to do

you join the crowd, and wait for the show to start.


Wed Jul 11, 2007 12:45 am
Profile
Red Cap
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Half Elf Mage Back Story
Berana's earliest memories are of your father trying

to teach you to do magic. He taught you Cantrips that you

could do by the time you were five years old. It is around

then that you began asking for your mother. Your father never

gave a satisfactory answer. As you got older he told you that

she had to return to her people and that she promised she would

be back for you some day. Her people were the elves and your

father is a human making you a half elf. Now your father tells

you that your mother is in the Elven Lands. He claims

not to know why and not to know when she will be back. He

does assure that she will be back.

You live in the great city of Koda on the eastern

side of the Northern Continent. Koda is a cross roads city

standing between the lands once ruled by Mora to the west

and the lands to the east across the Koda Narrows on the

Eastern Continent once ruled by Kanar. Koda was a great

prize in the struggle between these great powers and the city

changed hands depending on the ebb and flow of the conflict.

As the two empires battered themselves into exhaustion,

fell into civil war, and finally succumbed to barbarian invasions

from the Chaos lands Koda finally threw off its foreign

rulers and became independent.

Koda is a great port and its ships ply the Middle

Sea and the Northern Sea. The intrepid sail into the far Southern and

Western Oceans. Trade goods from all over the world can be found

in the markets and shops of Koda. It is also the center of

learning and knowledge. The tides of war and trade have made the Kodans

open to all who can add to the glory of the city. Besides

humans from all three continents there are Elves, Dwarves,

and Halflings, and all are welcome as long as they maintain

the peace of the city. All the religions of the world are

practiced in Koda.

Your parents met at the University of Koda. This great

institution not only teaches magic, but all the other arts and

sciences. Your father has never really told you where your mother

was from. There is a thriving Elvish community in Koda, but

apparently she was from elsewhere. This is not unusual as

talented student come from around the world, but as you have

grown older you begin to wonder why your father has not

been forthcoming about your mother's origin.

Your father on the other hand was originally from

Mora, but he had talent for magic. He left Mora for the

more cosmopolitan University at Koda. He has said that

the Morans were too driven and all their efforts were

focused on the recovery of their lost empire. Thus their

mages were being trained for battle and other pursuits

that the Moran military would find valuable. He has

consistently said that it would not be long before the

Morans would be trying to recover their empire. Indeed

recent news in Koda tells of a revived Mora on the march

under their new emperor Devit who has begun rebuilding

the Moran Army and recovering the territory Mora once

ruled. The response in Koda has been to strengthen

the city walls and build new war ships for the navy.

Your father's talents would clearly not be

appreciated in martial Mora. He is skilled at illusion,

and uses his talent to create things that are pleasing

to the senses. He has various personas that he uses

to provide entertainment. His most popular is Kalabash

the Great. Kalabash is a comical figure, dressed as a

caricature of a sage from the Eastern Continent. He wears

a brightly colored turban, white robes that trail ridiculously

behind, and enormous sleeves out of which are pulled just about

anything that Kalabash could require. Kalabash is a

popular figure on the stages of Koda where his performances

are greeted by gales of laughter. You both live comfortably,

you have had the best education, and you look forward to

entering the University. You plan to study magic.

This idyll is interrupted one day when an elf appears

at the door of your home. He asks to see your father, but does

not say why. They meet in private for a long time. The elf

finally emerges as you have anxiously waited. He pauses as he leaves

and looks you over. Finally he says, "So you are Berana. I see

the resemblance to your mother. We are anxious to have you

join us. I am sure your father can see the wisdom of what

we are suggesting. We are all your servants if you just say

the word." After these cryptic words he bows deeply to you

and leaves.

Your father comes to you. He looks pale and distressed.

"Berana," he begins haltingly. "We have to go on a dangerous journey.

That elf brought news of your mother's family. We cannot stay here. People

will come looking for you. I have hidden this from you, hoping that

a day like this would never come. Your mother is a member of the

Elvish Royal House. Apparently her branch of the family was on the

wrong side of a dispute which is why she made her way here to Koda.

Apparently something is reviving this dispute. That elf wants you to

come back and lead some sort of rebellion. Your mother always wanted

to shield us from this, and that is why she left. She was trying to

resolve it. I have not had word from her in over five years. This

elf says that her enemies have found out about you, and that they are

coming. I have no idea what they intend. Your mother and I were aware

that something like this could happen and have a plan. We have to

go to friends of hers who can help. Pack a bag for a long journey,

and this is for you." He hands you an envelope. In an ornate hand

written on it is "For my daughter". Your father leaves you alone.

You are shaking as you open the envelope. You begin to read:

To my dearest Berana

I know that no words can make up for the time I have been

separated from you. You have to believe that this is the only way

to ensure that you could grow up away from the shadow that haunts

me. I am cursed to be born to a family that contends for the

rulership of the Elves. This contest among the three great

clans has been going on since the Elves came to this world thousands

of years ago. It waxes and wanes and our family was

much aggrieved twenty years ago. It was decided that I should

leave, gain skills in magic in Koda and return to the struggle.

I did not expect to fall in love with your father, and certainly

did not expect to have a child. Duty to my family compelled me

to return at the appointed time. I managed to convince your

father that you and he had to stay behind and not to get swept

into the endless conflict. I could not bear to see your father,

and you my precious girl scarred as I had been. My years in Koda were

the happiest of my life and I could not tear your father away and

wanted you, my daughter, to grow up there.

If you are reading this it means that you have been

discovered. There is nothing but danger in this. My own family

will want to use you as a pawn in the endless struggle, and the

others certainly have an even worse fate planned for you.

Your father and I agreed that if this day came to pass

that you must flee. I have prepared a safe refuge for you in

the city of Caron in the Galban Hills. The Mage's Guild of

Caron has long ties to my family and there you must find the

mage Uthnel. This elf you can trust and he will ensure that

you and your father are safe and hidden from those, whoever

they may be, who are looking for you. Show Uthnel the enclosed

ring, and he will know you.

I realize that you may not want to follow this course

of action. Your father has a second letter which details the

struggle for the rule of the elves, my part in it, and who

among the elves you can trust, those you cannot, and those

who I am uncertain about. He will give you this letter

when you are ready to stand on your own and make your own

choice on the course of your life. I have left it to him

to decide which letter to give you, but I have begged him

to do whatever he can to keep you from getting involved

in the struggle. If he is doing as I ask he may even deny

the existence of such a letter. I beg you not to make his

path even more painful than it has already been. He was

broken when I had to leave, but he recovered due to his love

for you. If he looses you, he may never recover. I could not

bear having caused this, so again I beg you to respect his

choice for you.

Finally, and I know that mere words are inadequate,

please forgive me for the years that I have been away. Know

that I did it out of love for you and your father. Once you

are safe in Caron word will be passed to me, and I pray

that I can see you.

With all my love...

Your Mother

Princess Zaria of the Aleanadeth

Tears well up in your eyes. You are confused. You clutch

at the ornate signet ring that was enclosed in the letter.

Eventually your father returns and comforts you. He

tells you that he is prepared for this journey. He has a wagon

that can serve as a traveling stage for Kalabash's show. He will

hire some mercenaries to escort you both to the west. He suggests

that you prepare yourself to leave in the morning. He never mentions

a second letter, and refuses to answers any questions you have.

You pack your

things, you notice your father casting spells and packing too, late

that night he tells you it is time to leave, and you enter the ornately

painted wagon and leave the only home you have ever known. As you leave

the house the elf who visited during the day approaches, shouting at your

father and drawing a sword. To your complete shock your father reaches

into a pocket, and throws

a bag at the elf. The bag explodes as it strikes the elf covering him

with dust. The elf screams and falls rigidly to the ground. Your father

leaps off the wagon, approaches the unmoving elf, and casts some spell over

him. He rushes back to the wagon, telling you that the elf is unharmed,

will forget that he found you due to something your mother left behind,

and handing you the elf's sword.

It takes days for you to recover from the shock. You barely notice

that four men on horses join your wagon as it leaves the city and rolls to

the west. You barely stop in the first month. It takes that long to get to

the Canvil, another port city on the Middle Sea where the River Oran drains

into the sea. There your father dismisses his guards, and arranges to give

some performances. They are very popular, and he incorporates you into the

performance as his assistant. You note that the climax of the performance

is when Kalabash shows to the audience a statue of a mounted soldier which

is made of silver and encrusted with semi-precious stones. He says that

he found this magical statue far to the east and then he disappears,

reappearing at some other spot on the stage. He then does other

disappearance tricks, with a combination of magic and prestidigitation,

using you as a distraction. He claims that all this is enabled by the

power of the statue. He tells you that he found the statue in Koda, it

has some magical power, but he has no clue what. It makes a good prop as

in the darkness it glows faintly.

After two weeks the wagon is loaded on a barge and you are poled

up the river to the city of Oran. It takes about a week. There you spend

two weeks giving performances. Oran is on the eastern side of the Lombard

plain. The city was once much larger and you learn that it suffered greatly

during the Barbarian Wars. They swept down from the north, out of the Wild

Lands, over the Palian Mountains and into the plain. They abhorred structures

and any town they took they would level. Oran never fell to them, but the

rich farm land around was depopulated and Oran's only connection to the

outside world was via the river. The city's population fell leaving

neighborhoods within its walls empty ruins. Compared to the vibrancy

of Koda, Oran is a rude shock.

Your father hires more guards and the wagon is loaded on a river

boat and heads further up river to the north west. As the river dwindles

your boat can make it no further, it stops at a small town equally populated

by Dwarves and Humans. You give a performance there, which is, as usual, well

received. You and your guards follow a very well maintained road that runs

north. Eventually it goes to the very feet of the towering, snow covered

Palian Mountains. Your father pays an enormous sum to the Dwarves and your

wagon enters their underground kingdom. The guards do not accompany you

and a group of Dwarves act as your escorts. They tell you that you are

following the Underground Way which runs for 2500 miles from the city

of Venga at its western end to the Northern Sea north of Koda at its

eastern end. You turn west and follow the Way until you get to the Dwarven

city of BarFluge where you turn south. The entire journey is a revelation,

as the Dwarves use engines and gadgets of a sort that you

have never seen. You do not even understand how some of their machines

work, and any questions you asked are met with silence. Your father tells

you that the Dwarves have mastered a different sort of magic and combined

it with their prowess at metal and stone working they can produce devices

that are incredible. At the Dwarven underground town of BarFluge you exit

the underground kingdom you join a caravan that is heading south to Caron.

You pass through the Galban Hills. The caravan guards are very nervous,

and tell you that you are passing the Cracktow. They explain that this is an

area of rough country on the eastern edge of the Galban Hills. It is infested

with fell creatures who have no greater pleasure than robbing Dwarf

caravans. The Duke of Galba has been unable to clear it out, but some of

his troops meet the caravan and help guard it. Fortunately you arrive without

incident.

Caron rises out of the forests being cited on a low mountain rising

above the Galban Hills. You pass through the gates of the walled city. Gate

guards thoroughly inspect your wagon. They find the Elven sword you gathered

in Koda, they marvel at it while your father gives an evasive answer as to its

origin. They tell you that no long or missile weapons are allowed within the city,

and leave you a token for the sword. Present the token at the gate and you can

recover your sword when you leave the city. They warn you that magic use is

strictly forbidden within the city unless a permit is obtained from the Mage's

Guild. Your father protests and they give him a "Temporary License to Practice

Magic" which is good for a week. They collect 10 GP for this. They also charge

you 10 GP for the wagon, 1 GP for each of your horses, and 1 SP for the two people

to enter the city. Your father asks after Uthnel, and the guards know of

his shop and they direct you there.

This city is much more to your liking. It bustles with activity and

you see a good number of Elves, Dwarves, and Halflings mingling among the

dominant Humans. As you climb towards the top of the city you pass through

an area of large homes and smart shops. Uthnel apparently runs one shop, called

Uthnel's House of Rare Magic. There you are ushered to the rear when you ask

for Uthnel. He is a wizened elf, and when he speaks with your father, they

turn to you, your father saying, "Berana, show him your mother's ring." You take

it out on its chain that you have been wearing the ring around your neck. Uthnel,

an older, but elegant elf, stares in amazement at the ring, falls to his knees

saying, "Lady, I am yours to command." Your father pulls him up, admonishing,

"Restrain yourself. If you act like that then it will not be long before everyone

knows who Berana is. She needs to remain hidden until we can figure out what is

going on. This is as Zaria commands."

The name of your mother seems to strike Uthnel like a blow, "Of course,

anything you say. Where are my manners, but Lady," he nods to you, "your family

has directed our folk here for countless years. It is difficult to not show the

deference that you are owed. Forgive my presumption, but as usual the commands

of the Aleanadeth are laden with wisdom." You spend the next days in near seclusion at

Uthnel's home. You learn that there is a colony of Elves here in Caron, that

are held in high regard by the humans. They lead the University of Caron,

the Mage's Guild, and are held in high regard by the Duke of Galba who rules

the city and the lands around. Uthnel tells you and your father that the elves

here are divided into factions, miniature versions of the wider elven society, and

thus councils you and your father to stay hidden. You and your father argue that

it would look for strange for Kalabash the Great to disappear and thus should

give some performances. It is very unlikely that anyone will be able to connect

you with Kalabash. The only elf who knows for sure was left paralyzed in

Koda. Eventually after but a few days your father and you prevail. Kalabash

gives a performance in Caron.

Kalabash is a smash. In fact demands for his performances are so high

that you and your father almost forget the intrigues of the Elves over the next

weeks as you seem to be constantly appearing before adoring crowds. Your father

is swept up by this. The crowds are much more boisterous than those in Koda, and

in fact both you and your father grow uncomfortable by the unwanted attention

they give to you. To distract them from you he hires a beautiful young woman,

Susan, who is willing to dress provocatively on stage. The crowds take to Susan

and in fact many of the patrons seem far more interested in watching her than in

Kalabash's tricks. Uthnel frets over this unwanted attention, but both you, your

father, and Susan are swept along by the enjoyment of being the center of

attention in this very exciting city. Uthnel continues to try to investigate why

it is and who from Elf society is trying to find you, and to contact your mother. He has seen

to it that you and your father are registered with the Mage's Guild and are allowed

to use magic within the confines of the city. He notes that it is not a good idea

to try to recover your weapons while in the city, as that would arouse the suspicions

of the Town Guard. You also make plans to continue your education at the University

here.

As spring arrives Kalabash plans a benefit performance out doors in one

of the city's great marketplaces, the Low Square. As the three of you prepare

for the show, your father remarks, "It has never glowed that brightly before." He is

holding the statue of the mounted soldier that has become one of the highlights

of the show. It is glowing noticeably in the dim light of the wagon that

you use as a dressing room. Foreboding washes over you, but Susan says, "Too

bad it is not night time. That would be a great effect. Come on we best get

started. Can't keep them waiting. Crowds at the market can get ugly." Indeed

the crowd is chanting for Kalabash and Susan, and your father waves you towards

the stage.


Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:04 am
Profile
Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Dwarf Fighter Back Story
Last back story. Tomorrow I start with the campaign diary.

The Servants of the Great Smith themselves do not know why

the people we brought from their home to this place.

Some say our ancestors delved too deep, and that in punishment

the people were sent here. Others laugh at this pointing

out that the Elves who only delve in the magical realm and

the Halflings who delve into nothing beyond the soil

and their next meal share

the "punishment." Punishment also seems to be an extreme

description. While this place is troubled by Fell creatures

that contest with the people for the under surface realm, it

is hardly worse than home where battle has raged from time

immemorial. The Elves claim to understand, but they talk too

much and do too little.

The Humans are a puzzle. They arrived only a few

hundred years ago, but they have come in a bewildering array

of sorts. Some are allies in the struggle with evil and chaos,

while others are evil and chaos incarnate. Initially we were

wary of them. The Elves taught them magic, as they did us

when we first arrived here. This

angered the Servants of the Great Smith, and harsh words and

even some blows were exchanged between the people and forest

dwellers. Fortunately cooler heads prevailed and all united

in the struggle. The Humans are energetic and in fact some began

to lead the fight. They ruled from the city of Mora and we

were happy to join their Moran Empire and work under their

leadership for the good. Eventually they fell to petty squabbling,

and to waves of Human barbarians who swept down from the Wild

Lands. The people were safe in their mountain realms.

The magic of the Elves is strange; shouting and gesturing

to produce something that lasts but an instant. The Servants

of the Great Smith have learned their own way. The making of

things and improving their function with magic is more suited

to our tastes. We have produced great engines that carry cargo

and people around our underground realms. We have weapons the

likes of which are unknown to the others. None can stand against

our armies. If only our underground homes were secure. Constantly

the Fell creatures attack from below as we burrow for the resources

and secrets that we need.

Thus our lot is difficult. We need to dig, but digging

brings our enemies closer. All help is welcome, and the Servants

of the Great Smith seek knowledge and resources wherever they can

be found. Thus every Dwarf before he can claim his full place

must find something out or increase the resources available. Most

dig, some follow another path and go out to the surface world.

The Elves, Humans, and Halflings have their own ways, and learning

from them can often open up new paths beyond the imagining of the

Great Smith.

It is your time, Rir, to find a secret. Digging in the mines

does not suit you and you appeal to your father, Mir, to be allowed

to go out into the world. Your father is great crafter and is well

known among the people as a great weaver of magic into seemingly

ordinary things to create wonders. "You are not patient enough for

my way, Rir, but too smart to waste in the mines. Going out and

learning from the surface dwellers is your path." He takes you

to his shop which is lit by Lightstones. Wondrous variations of

this ancient invention are your father's signature creation.

He rumages on a work bench and pulls out a statue of human soldier.

It is silver and encrusted with semi-precious stones. "This arrived

in our lab long before I was an apprentice. Apparently it was attracted

by our magical work. For many years no one knew what to make of it. In the

last weeks my thoughts have turned to it. This already is an unusual

sign. I have discovered it is part of a larger device. Whoever made

it was favored by the Great Smith as it is not only intricately made,

but also magically complex. It is part of a magical machine. There

are many other pieces but with only this one I am unable to figure its

function. It must have something to do with travel through space

and time given that it got to our lab. Look at this table." You see

a great stone table in which is a deep scratch leading to a circular gouge.

Your father takes the statue and fits it into the gouge. It fits

perfectly. "This table has stood here since this Undercity has been

built. Look at this map."

The map he shows you has the location of your Undercity of BarFluge.

On it is a rectangle, circle, and line presumably representing the table.

The line is extended and you see it going south through the hilly region

south of Pelian Mountains and reaching a large dot labeled Caron. "Caron

is a great Human city. It is built on the slopes of a volcano, and the

Elves long ago knew it was a place of power. Long ago in the Mad Wars,

the Elves used the place to train Mages. The Morans built a city there

as it dominates the Galban Hills. They were not fools. We trade with Caron,

and our caravans regularly travel there. I am guessing that

the machine that this is a part of was in Caron. Its pieces got flung

away by some powerful magic. Maybe something went wrong with the machine

or some powerful magic hit it causing a malfunction."

He stops, growing thoughtful, "In any case, the machine is stirring

again. I have no idea why, but powerful magic items have a way of making things

happen. That is probably why I started working with it these last weeks. You

should take this, go to Caron, find more parts of the machine, and see if you

can figure out what it does. I did figure out one thing. It seems to seek

out other parts of the machine. Take it in your hands and close your eyes."

You do, and notice that the statue is strangely warm. With your eyes closed

you see in your mind's eye a spinning arrow. "I think that that arrow would

point at a nearby piece of the machine. Here under the mountain we are too

far away to get a signal. If you get to Caron, you should be able to find

more parts. Take it my son, find out this great secret. Make me and your

clan proud."

Your father has apparently prepared for this moment as he leads you

to a room well stocked with traveling gear and some weapons. He also gives

you an unusual device. "I have been working on this in my lab, and you can

try it. It is called a Luminous Lance." It looks like a glass bottle with

a handle on which there is a trigger. Inside the bottle you can see wires,

metal disks, and crystal disks. Your father grasps the lance by the

handle, and aims the spout of the battle at the wall and depresses the

trigger. A beam of intense light shoots

out, melting a crater in the wall, and leaving a burning smell. He

explains that it is technomagic device. It needs to be fueled, typically

with lamp oil, but anything that burns will do. It has three power settings

and a full charge can fire six low power shots, three medium power shots,

or two high power shots.

Your father says that there are Dwarves in Caron, and that a former

apprentice of his, called Fahet, is there. You can look to him for help

an guidance on your quest.

Later that day you are traveling with a caravan south to Caron.

While you have been outside before this is the first time you have been

away from the Dwarven lands. The caravan takes about a week to travel to

Caron. On the first days of the journey the caravan is tense. Those

that have made the journey before tell you that Cracktow, an area of

broken land on the eastern edge of the Galban Hills, is filled with Fell

creatures which the Duke of Galba has been unable to clean out. Each

night you arrive at a town or village with a well used stopping ground

for the caravan. Rich travelers stay at the town inn, while others

rest in the wagons of the caravan. The towns are walled, clean, and

prosperous. Merchants in the caravan do a brisk business trading Drawven

manufactured goods for food that is abundant even though it is early

spring and planting has just begun.

You arrive at Caron, a great walled city set on the slopes of

a low cone shaped mountain. The human guards at the gate are polite, but

they collect a tax (10 GP/wagon, 1 GP/animal, 1 SP/being), and confiscate

all long and missile weapons. They leave you a token that can be redeemed

for the weapons when you leave the city. They have no clue what to make

of your Luminous Lance and let you keep it. You ask after Fahet and are

directed to his shop. As you walk through the city you recall your

quest, you grasp the statue, and close your eyes. You see clearly an

arrow leading you on. You follow it, and eventually find yourself in

market square. Half the square is full of merchant stalls vending all

manner of things. The other half of the square is full of people mostly

humans, but there is a smattering of Dwarves, Elves, and Halflings.

They are gathered in front of a stage. The backdrop of the stage is formed

by a large wagon on which a garish sign proclaims, "Kalabash the Great".

The crowd begins to chant for the show. With your eyes closed you see

one bright arrow pointing at the wagon, but there are other fainter

arrows pointing in all directions.

Your quest seems to be beginning, as you begin to push into the

crowd to get closer to the stage.


Fri Jul 13, 2007 1:03 am
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post First Session
Party = Aislyn, Aurelia, Berana, Rivery, Rir

In Caron

In the Low Square where Kalabash the Great is putting on show. It is

going not well with much of the crowd being more interested in the beautiful

Susan who is on stage with Kalabash and his daughter Berana. As the show

nears the end Kalabash pulls out his Kuttner Knight and says that this statue

from the far east allows him to disappear and move at will around the stage.

As he begins his routine a cross bow shot from a roof top hits him and he

tumbles to the ground with the statue rolling to his right. Berana rushes

to his side to find him unconcious and bleeding. The bolt was coated with

Baneberry, he made his saving throw and will be unconscious for 20 days.

Susan flees to the wagon. Rir saw the whole thing and fires his Luminous Lance

at the shooters, which he notes as two figure. It does not have the range

and has no effect.

The others head for the stage and see three "men" in cloaks jump

on to the stage. Aurelia is moving to try to heal Kalabash and is impeded

by one of the figures, which she recognizes to be a skeleton. Aislyn picks

up the fallen statue. The others close in on the stage. The skeletons menace Berana,

with short swords who responds with a Magic Missle which strikes home. Aurelia

tries to Away the skeletons and fails. Rir and Rivery strike at two skeletons

with little effect. Aurelia sees to the fallen Kalabash, Aislyn, Rir and Rivery

battle one each, and Berana finishes one off with a Magic Missle. The other

two are killed one by Rir and the other by Rivery.

The town guard steps in and sweeps up the party, Kalabash and Susan bringing

them to the South Tower. There Captain Andretta questions them. He gets little out

of them, but does reveal that they are all carrying a magic item. He gets Rivery to

reveal his one bishop, but no one speaks up. A doctor comes and says that Kalabash

will be OK, but out for at least a week. The Captain questions Susan, she reveals that

she has a past, but claims to know nothing about this incident. Working with Kalabash

was a great deal and she mentions that Kalabash and Berana are known to Uthnel.

A town guard comes in saying that they trailed two persons fleeing the scene to a mauselium

in the cemetary. Captain Andretta looks distressed and asks for volunteers, but saying

not to take anyone with a family. He looks to the party with exasperaton saying that he

knows that there is more to the story than they are telling him, but that he would be

willing to not pursue it further if they were willing to explore the cemetary with

him. Some months back he had led an expedition to the cemetary and lost some men. He

does not want to have that happen again. The party agrees and Andretta sends out

some men to collect their weapons. Uthnel shows up, shows great deference to Berana

tries to convince her to come with him, but she is firm in wanting to find the people

who did this to her father. Aislyn notices the old elf mage following orders from the

young half-elf women. Weapons arrive and everyone notes Berana's fine elven sword.

Aislyn notes that it is the sort of sword carried by elf nobility. Also great defference

is paid to Aurelia, who is recognized as nobility.

The party plus Captain Andretta heads to the cemetary. Aislyn sneaks up on the

mauseluem and is overwhelmed by the stench of rotting bodies. Rivery thinks of throwing

a lit torch into the mauselium and they see a wrecked interior and a tunnel entrance at

the back. As they pass in with Rir in the lead Rivery and Aislyn are distressed by the

stench, but they move slowly through the tunnel. They are ambushed by a skeleton who

jumps Rir. He and Aislyn finish it off after a brief fight. It does get a good hit

in on Rir. They follow the tunnel until it joins the main sewer. Aislyn is able to

see that someone got here and turned right which is out of the city. Captain Andretti

is delighted and tells them that the sewers under the city are very dangerous with

something horrible living under the main city. They come to a grate that is bent open.

Going out they are in a ravine at dusk. Berana smells smoke and in a nearby

copse of trees they find a small hut burning down. Rivery rushes in and recovers a map.

Aislyn is unable to find any helpful tracks. After a discussion where Andretti tells them

that he will not go back into the sewers and it is his guess that whoever attacked Kalabash

has fled the city, and he cannot help them beyond the city. He thanks them for their efforts,

wishes that again that he will be more forthcoming with him, will pass on a report to the

Guardians of Galba. They decide to head back into the city, have their weapons confiscated,

and plan to meet for breakfast the next morning. Rivery uses his pieces to scope for more.

He finds them on all but on Berana but sees a confused mess at her. To be clear he did this

while exploring the hut when Berana had both the ring and sword.

Aislyn visits Darthia, a priestess of Artemis, who lives at the Temple of

Artemis, which is not on the Corniche. Darthia knows nothing about the statues, but gives

her a place to stay.

Aurelia returns to the Temple of Athena and speaks with Bioassay. He is excited

to hear about the discovery of more statues, but is not much more help. Examining the map

he identifies some locations in Caron as the Temple of Athena, and Castle Caron. He identifies

"Z" as Zagyg, a mage who left the Mages Guild of Caron and went rogue. The rumor is that

he is in the Cracktow. He also notes that one of the locations outside of Caron corresponds

to a Halfling village near Caron, and another is near the city of Yggsburg on the Nor River.

He also suggests that the church would love to gather all the pieces available and analyze

them. If they are some sort of super healing device, as they believe, then they would be

willing to pay handsomely for the extra pieces.

Berana returns to Uthnel's. Kalabash is resting comfortably and his own doctors

agree that he will be unconscious for at least a week. Uthnel listens to her story, asks

if Elves could have been possibly involved, and both are stumped. He looks at the

map and ID's Blacktooth Ridge as a nearby town recently beset by goblins and have asked

the Duke for help. He also IDs Zagyg describing him as a rogue mage who left the Mage's

Guild of Caron. The Z is his chateau. For some reason she does not pass this along.

He councils her not to go out, but she seems firm in her desire to get to the bottom

of who tried to kill her father. Uthnel mentions that he has hired Susan to be an

"ornament" in his shop. Later he gives her some history of the Elvish royal houses

and cautions her to be careful showing around the ring and sword. He also notes that

he suspects that Susan has more to do with this than she is letting on.

Rivery sees Alwine. He has noted that one of the locations on the map corresponds

to Alwine's bookshop. He also uses his pieces to scope out the locations in Caron finding

the Temple of Athena, Castle Caron, a grocer in the Low City and a non-descript house in

the High City. The house has a larger than normal "garage". Confronting Alwine, who is

very excited to see that Rivery has gathered more pieces, Alwine tells him that yes he has

more pieces, but he is not willing to hand them over unless they can make eight and be more

useful for finding others. Rivery asks after the grocery store. Alwine tells him that that

is a location of the Orphans and tells him to avoid it. Rivery asks for plans of the house

in the High City, and tells him that it will take at least a day.

Rir visits the shop of Fahet, a Dwarven smith. He knows nothing about the pieces,

but he offers Rir a place to stay and work if he needs it.

They meet the next morning. They agree to work together to find the pieces.

All put theirs on the table, Rivery holds back a pawn. Rivery says that his only

interest is the money. Rir asks about other parts of the "machine" and that he

thinks it was made by elves. Aislyn disagrees and mentions that she has been asked

to retrieve it by an elven mage. Talk turns to Berana. Now she turns up nothing

when looked at with the pieces. She shows them her ring, and tells them it was

from her mother who was an Elven princess. They check the map for magic and see

nothing. They conclude that Zagyg is behind the attack in the Low City.

They decide to check out the grocer.

It seems ordinary. They buy food for a day trip. Aurelia commands the

clerk to give them the jeweled statue. He is confused, goes in back, and comes

back without the statue and forgotten why he is trying to help them.

They decide to head to the halfling village.


Sat Jul 14, 2007 2:55 am
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post First Session Comments
Idea for the first session is obviously stolen from "The Usual

Suspects". It went very well with a good fight in the square

and tense moments in the cemetery, tunnel, and sewer.

Of course Kalabash had to be out to cut off one source of information,

and they had to find the map to give a focus to the campaign.

Good role playing as they warily decided to work together

after the excitement of the previous day. C&C works great.

Everyone picks up the rules pretty quickly and there is minimal

paper shuffling and looking things up. The rules are simple and flexible

enough that I have little trouble making things up in response

to unexpected player actions. No one complains about unfairness

or silliness. Lots of plot hooks for them to follow, but they make the

choice that will lead them to "Shadows of the Halfling Hall".


Sat Jul 14, 2007 3:22 am
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Mogrl

Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 20660
Location: Arizona and St Louis
Post 
Very nice. I have always liked chess and to see such a cool magic item made out of a whole chess set has always been cool.

Its also nice how, now that the time is right, pieces are showing up and being seen by people all over the place.

Do you have any write ups for your various orders, like the order of the Owl, etc...?
_________________
The Ruby Lord, Earl of the Society

Next Con I am attending: http://www.neoncon.com/

My House Rules: http://www.freeyabb.com/phpbb/viewtopic ... llordgames

_________________
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.


Sun Jul 15, 2007 12:48 am
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Reaction in the newspapers
Thanks again for encouragement. The chess set magic item is also a stolen

idea from Katherine Neville's novel The Eight. I started home brewing

this world when I was a graduate student in the early 90's. I made

notes by hand in a lab notebook. Thus for some things there are not

electronic versions of the write up. I will have to dig around for the

Order of the Owl.

In the meantime, I would produce newspaper stories based on campaign

events. We were meeting once overy two weeks so it kept the players engaged and hopefully entertained between sessions. Here are two from

the first session.

Under the Heel - Newspaper of record in the Low City front page headline

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Town Guard Breaks Up Public Performance in Low Square

=====================================================

Yesterday afternoon in the Low Square a free public performance by

the popular prestidigitator Kalabash and his lovely assistant Susan was broken

up by the Town Guard. Guardsmen cleared the peaceful crowd in response

to their enthusiastic response to the performance. At least 20 citizens,

including a number of women and children, were arrested and brought to

the dreaded South Tower for "questioning." Their fate is as yet unknown,

but this newspaper fears the worst. Kalabash

was seriously hurt in the incident, but his representatives decried the

Guard's heavy handed tactics as further evidence of the Guard's, "...

over reaction to the people having fun."

Captain Andretta of the Guard, well known to the readers of this

newspaper for numerous reports of his use of excessive force,

claimed that undead attacked the stage and the Guard moved in response

to the ensuing panic. The undead were defeated by the Guard, and some

were seen fleeing the scene. Subsequent Guard action forced whoever

was in control of the horrors to flee the city.

We do not need to comment on the implausibility of the official

story from the Guard. We continue to call for citizen control of the

clearly out of control Town Guard, which is clearly demonstrated

by this display of brutality. The Duke continues to ignore

our petitions for redress from this an other problems such as, the

high cost of food, lack of proper educational opportunities, lack

of affordable health care, and decaying infrastructure in Caron's

Low City. How long can these conditions be expected to last

before this newspaper is forced to call for citizen action to

remedy their miserable conditions? This brutal regime is not

even able to temporarily relieve the people's suffering with an

entertainment without revealing its true face when the people show

even the slightest sign of enjoying themselves.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Caron Chronicle - Newspaper of record in the High City front page headline

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Riot in Low Square

==================

Yesterday a riot broke out during the performance by the famous prestidigitator

Kalabash and his lovely assistant Susan. It was a free performance supported by the

good graces of our beloved Duke offered to the denizens of the Low City. Apparently

the crowd was not happy with the performance and attacked the performers. Kalabash

was badly injured before the Town Guard intervened. A number of the rabble were

taken to the South Tower for punishment, and have been remanded to the mines.

The Town Guard claims that undead within the crowd attacked the stage and tried

to assassinate Kalabash. They claim to have chased suspected perpetrators from the scene and

out of the city via the sewer. The crowd did panic when the performance was interrupted,

and that the precipitous flight from the square was understandable given the circumstances.

Besides Kalabash the Guard claims that no one else was seriously injured. Currently

no one is in custody in connection with this incident.

We do not need to comment on the implausibility of the official

story from the Guard. This riot in the Low Square is yet another example

of why the authorities must adopt a no tolerance policy towards the continuous

criminal behavior by the denizens of the Low City. They cannot even show

proper thanks for largesse from our beloved Duke, and this newspaper again calls

for ending such wastes of money. Such attempts to elevate or enlighten are simply

wasted in the Low City. Such resources could be better spent on more Guardsmen,

stricter enforcement, and more severe punishment for the guilty to ensure that

they never darken the streets of our beloved city again.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Sun Jul 15, 2007 1:29 am
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Red Cap
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Posts: 210
Post Second Session: Shadows of the Halfling Hall
Loose ends in Caron. Aurelia picks up potions of Heal Serious Wounds

and Holy Water for each member of the party. Rivery meets Osburn who is suprised

to learn that Rivery is doing a job for Alwine. Rivery goes to Alwine and asks if

all is well. Alwine says to forget about it and leave it to him. Rivery tells

Alwine where he is headed, and Alwine directs him to pick up a package from Kyann.

Rir learns the use of the Luminous Lance, and packs some Lamp Oil. Fahet gives him

two lanterns using Lightstones. The lightstones last about one month. Aislyn

gives Kalabash's Knight to Berana and asks her for more information. Berana says

that she is from Koda, raised among humans, and she and her father journeyed to Caron

to visit relatives of her mother's. Pointedly she declines to tell them the origin

of her sword.

They head out to Newbriar, the nearby halfling village. They do not expect

to make it by the end of the day and plan to stop for the night. On the journey

they encounter a troop of the Guardians of Galba. They have been on patrol, but

have no valuable news for the party. They stop for the night in a nameless village

staying at an inn in two rooms. They experiment with Berana, her ring, and sword.

They figure out that all three of them are required to get a signal from the

pieces. Otherwise nothing. Berana casts Summon Familiar. In the morning

she is awoken by an infant Gold Dragon that is dubbed Enya. Aislyn begins to

recall the Prophecy of the Return.

They arrive at Newbriar just before noon. They meet Janice Grayice, who

is a priestess of Demeter. She thanks the gods that they have come, expressing

suprise they have arrived so quickly. She tells them that the Mayor, and other

local worthies including her superior have disappeared into Willoc Brambletoe's

home. They were attending a party on Friday night. As of Saturday noon the Reeve

and two town guards went to investigate. When they did not return as of that

evening the town worthies sent a plea for help to local villages and Caron. The

party claims they learned of the problem here from a passing Galban Guard company

and came here. She leads them to the Inn, the Portly Partridge.

There they meet Redd Softfoot who owns the Inn and is the deputy mayor.

He tells them what he knows. Willic is the newphew of Janos Brambletoe. Janos

was an adventurer, died a year ago, and left Willic alot of money. Willic used

the money to buy some land and build a large home north of town. He spends too

much and owes the Inn and others money. He then finishes the rest of the story

as Janice. He offers them free room and board, and says the town will give

them 100 GP/persons if they figure out what happened to the mayor and company.

While this is going on Merrin Fireheel, the Deputy Reeve shows up. She expresses

displeasure at hiring the party, but agrees to help them get to the place.

Redd does tell them that he heard that Old Man Longbottom was paid a bunch

of money by Willic to deliver some sort of message the day before the party. No

one knows what the message was. Redd gives them directions to the Longbottom

place. They go and find Longbottom. He does not know what they are talking about,

and has three sons who are desperate to joins the party on the expedition to Willic's.

Aurelia Commands him, and he expresses distaste at Willic saying he would never

do anything for Willic. As they leave the boys show up with a pitchfork, shovel,

and pick eager to join the expedition. Heading back into the center of town they

meet Janice, who directs them to Brambletoe, and takes the boys back home.

On the grounds the party sends Enya to scout the out buildings. They find

the barn filled with unhappy ponies, and are unable to get into the locked shed.

They enter the hall, and are attacked by Zombies. Aurelia successfully aways

them and the party sets about killing five of them with holy water. The spider

lands near Rivery and they surround and kill it with Berana delivering the killing

blow. They methodically clean out the first floor. Rir uses his Luminous

Lance to kill the Zombie Dogs, all smash on the beetles (Aislynx2, Aurelia, Berana, Rir,

and Rivery), and the two big Zombies by Aislyn and Rir. They find the two diaries.

They realize via Rir and Willic's diary that the hall was not built from scratch,

and that Willic saved much money by doing this. They only note that a few of

the halfling zombies are missing their left hands and eyes. They find the Reeve

in the webs. They gather all the treaure and note that the wine and the crockery

and dinner ware is valuable, but difficult to get out. They leave it for later.

They head down finding the secret door in the fireplace. They use Enya

to scout ahead. They have a tough time with the Death Grips (Rir x3, Aurelia x3,

Rivery, Aislyn). Rivery uses one of the Healing Potions. They find the secret door,

get frightened by the snake, discover the trap, Rir is slightly hurt as they pass

over it. They follow their pieces and trigger the trap in the halucination room.

Berana is convinced she is invisible, Aurelia fights imagineary demons, and Rivery is

knocked unconscious having very nasty dreams. Rivery completely figures out the

double pit trap, but Aislyn is slightly hurt and poisoned when she stumbles while

crossing. They dither enough that the big zombie comes out to fight them.

Rivery climbs up and around to back stab. The Shadow comes out to attack him, leading

to Rivery screaming like a little girl. Aurelia aways the shadow. Rir breaks his

Luminous Lance, and he and Aislyn finish off the zombie.

They find the secret door and the false tomb. Rivery triggers the gargoyle

trap and Rir finds the trip to go down. In the real tomb, Aurelia aways the mummy,

and the ghast is killed by Rir and Aislyn. They find the two pieces and some gold.

They begin to leave and decide to explore one more room and encounter the Bag-o-Bones.

It goes badly with Rivery and Aislyn going down, and the Bag finally being defeated

by a critical hit from Rir. They are running on fumes with no spells left, low on

healing, and hurt. They make their way out, carrying the mobile treasure.

They head to the Temple of Demeter. They distrust the Inn keeper due to

the "lies" he told them. They are met by Janice. They say that the halflings

are all dead, were turned into zombies, and that they want to stay here for the night.

She is a bit confused, but very sympathetic. They have obviously been very battered,

are carrying a large amount of booty, and need to rest up for the night. She also

notes that at least two of them will be "indisposed" for a few days (Rivery and

Aislyn).


Mon Jul 16, 2007 12:45 am
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Second Session Comments
Another very good session. Shadows of the Halfling Hall is an excellent

introductory module. It could have easily have been a TPK when Rivery found the Bag-o-Bones. Actually it probably should have been as I forgot to

do half damage for edged weapons. Not really sure what Rivery was thinking when he went had to explore that last room. Entertaining moments when they tangle with the Deathgrips and the halucination trap. They are beginning to realize that Berana seems to come with lots of secrets.


Mon Jul 16, 2007 12:58 am
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Red Cap
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Posts: 210
Post Third Session: Newbriar, Caron, and Looking Ahead
Party = Aislyn, Aurelia, Berana, Rivery (levels up to 2), Rir

Sunday: Evening

Party settle spends some time testing their treasure. They find some magic items,

and a scroll. They discover there is very little in the range of extra help here, but

Janice does all she can for them. Rir discovers his Luminous Lance is beyond fixing

by him.

That night Aureilia is woken by Janice. They go out and see a fire to the north,

which Janice says is Brambletoe Hall. Aurelia contemplates bringing the whole party

to investigate, but Janice advises not to wake Aislyn and Rivery who need to rest. Aurelia

decides against investigating and let all sleep. This was done by the Kobolds and not

found out by anybody.

Monday

The party awakens early. It is clear that Aislyn and Rivery are bed ridden

today and there is not a Heal Spell available to get them up. They hear Sir Ranulph's

troop of ten cavalry arrive and efficiently and competently deploy about the town. Ranulph

speaks to them hearing the tale of death and gets the report that the barn has been

opened, ponies missing, shed ransacked, and the floor of the main hall collapsed.

While Ranulph leaves to see to his men, the mayor's daughter comes and collapses

in tears when she learns of the death of her parents. She asks for her parents lost jewelry

and gathers up a ring and necklace. Janice points out to them that more such bereaved

will be coming wanting the return of their stuff. After some carping the party agrees to let

Janice pick through the treasure and gather up the halfling stuff. She is scrupulously

honest and picks out jewelry and the ex-Reeve's sword. She points out that the other stuff

is old and probably comes from humans who lived here long before the halflings settled.

She dose find a dose of Baneberry, crossbow quarrels, in a bag with 200 GP of coins

from Venga. They speculate that they have found the attempted assasin of Kalabash.

Ranulph comes back and organizes a meeting with the party, Janice, Merrin, and Redd.

After hearing the halflings story he asks the party for theirs. He figures out that they came

not in response to the halflings message for help, but probably were drawn here for the same

reason that the Necromancer who zombied the halflings. Rivery does try to use his visit to

Kyann as cover. Kyann is dragged in and gives corraboration to Rivery's story, but is very

uncomfortable and gets out as soon as possible. The Halflings say that Willic was a feckless

child of a rich family, and inherited money from his uncle. Some adventurers returned

the dead uncle about a year ago. Willic then bought the land and built his house.

Willic's diary does say that he discovered a pre-existing building and saved lots of money

and time building in it. He also kept it a secret, and the halflings do remember that the

dwarves who did the work were only here for a few months rather than the year it should

have taken.

Ranulph apologetically does point out that by the

"Fell Creatures Act" the land is forfieted to the Duke and the Adventures and anyone

else are able to take away any "movable" wealth. This upsets Redd who points out that

Willic owed money around town and the expectation was that he was going to sell off his

disused farmland to pay his debts. This would have been good for the town and Lord Remigius,

who is the Local Vale Lord and has his base at the nearby village of Reepham.

as the land would have gotten back into production. Ranulph is very sorry, but he points

out that there is very little he can do about it, unless the party wants to show some

charity to the town. After some consternation Aislyn convinces them that they should

forgo being paid their 500 GP and return it to the town to settle Willic's debts.

The halflings are very greatful and do whatever they can to help the party for the

rest of their stay. Ranulph also thanks them on behalf of his Lord, and promises to

help them as much as he can, and he tells them that he and his men will be here for

a few days as something unpleasent is still lurking about the village.

The party argues about what to do. They want to go back in, but realize that

they cannot use the route they used originally. They contemplate asking the halflings

to help them dig a new shaft.

In the evening Sargent Belton plus two men of the Galban Guard arrives. He is thrilled that

the Duke will be gaining the land, and clearly wants to gather something more from the

Duke. The party puts him off until the morning. Consulting with Ranulph they note

that the dried weeds in the old pots might placate Beltan. They need to test it and

decide to consult with Kyanne in the morning.

Tuesday

Aislyn is well enough to do a tracking check at the Brambletoe estate. She

finds that 5-10 clawed feet came from the north, ransacked the shed, led the ponies

away, and moved around the entrance. She is unable to track them away.

Rivery visits Kyann. He finds a dilapidated estate run by a "stoner".

He hands over a package, mushrooms, and agrees to try the dried weeds. He collapses,

has pleasent dreams, and takes a sample. He tells Rivery that the new Reeve has

it in for him so that care should be taken in the future.

The party gives half of the dried weeds in an old jar to Beltan who is happy and

rides off. He tells them how pleased the Duke is with new land, and tells them

to check out the "Trouble Board" at the Guardians Tower in Caron. Lots of opportunities

there to continue to please the Duke.

Ranulph is pleased to have him go, and says that this way his Lord can

lease the land back to the farmers while handing over the deed to the Duke. He tells

them that tombs of this sort are rare, but not unheard of around here. The party never

really tells the halflings or Ranulph exactly what they found.

Wednesday

The party heads back to Caron. The Halflings of Newbriar send them off nicely

and the Longbottom boys try to go with them adventuring, but the party sends them home.

On the way back they encounter a Guardian's patrol. Fortunately they have no trouble

at the gate and enter the city.

At the temple of Athena, University, Alwine and Shops they get stuff appraised and

discover that they have

to make donations. Rivery runs about getting things appraised and sells off much.

He saves a +1 Shield and +1 Chainmail for Aurelia and +1 Longsword for Aislyn.

They also gather a potion of Extra Healing. Rivery sees Lauret, one of his girlfriends

and brushes her off. Alwine takes the drugs and says he will get them dealt.

Aurelia remains there learning a new spell.

Rir sees Fahet and he says he can fix the Lance, but it will take a couple

of days. No charge for the labor, but if any material is required Rir will have

to cover it.

Berana and Aislyn see Uthnel. He is floored by Enya and is reminded of

the Prophecy of the Return. He shows them a copy of a book on it and they note that part of Berana's story seems to fit, but that the Prophecy is vague. They

do decide to keep things secret, and Uthnel promises to redouble his efforts

to try to contact Berana's mother. He deciphers the scroll and finds the spells

Shocking Grasp (1st), Knock (2nd), and Hold Person (3rd). Berana settles down

to learn Shocking Grasp. He tells them of Zagyg. He tells them Zagyg is insane, not

evil, not a Necromancer, and specializes in making "giant" things. He tells them

that insane mages often move north towards the Wild Lands. Venga is a likely destination.

He thinks it is unlikely that Zagyg is in the Cracktow.

Aislyn goes to the temple of the Artemis and asks Darthia about the Prophecy

of the Return, but she is clueless. The library there is also no help.

Thursday

They meet for breakfest. They try out the pieces they have found. They discover

the one Rivery has been holding out. They find one at Orphans Grocery, one at High House

(Copelia), and one at Dukes Palace. Newly they notice two fuzzy at Alwine's Bookshop, and

three at the University. They explore the University and find one in the Tower of the Mage's

Guild, one in a classroom/Professor's office building, and one in a warehouse. Rir wonders

how Rivery knows so much about the pieces. Aislyn points out that they all have different

motivations. Rir says his is for the money. Aislyn and

Berana check out the Library on the Prophecy of the Return and find a variant that mentions

"Green Forests" and "Forest Lord who commands the beasts".

They go the Guardians Tower and see the "Trouble Board". It is a giant map of the

Galban Hills with trouble spots connected by strings to little boards describing the

trouble. They identify Botkinburg afflicted by Goblins (east of Caron), Halder's Gap

afflicted by Kobolds and an Ogre, and the Mysterious Tower. Looking again with their

pieces they note the Botkinburg pair is moving towards them. Also Rir wonders how his

piece ever got noticed since it was held in lead, and the party puts their nine pieces

in Aislyn's lead box. They decide to head to Botkinburg first thing in the morning.

Folks will weapon up and learn spells.


Tue Jul 17, 2007 9:29 pm
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Red Cap
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Post Third Session Comments
Good session with lots of role playing. The players learn that they live in a wider world and glimpse some of the story behind Berana. On to Blacktooth Ridge.


Tue Jul 17, 2007 9:35 pm
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Red Cap
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Posts: 210
Post Fourth Session
Party: Aislyn, Aurelia,Berana, Rir, Rivery

Thursday

Party decides to head straight to Botkinburg. As they do they find that the pieces

are heading away from them. They pass a mechant's caravan with wood products and

spend the night in an inn. There they learn that Botkinburg is known to have fairies

in it. Fairies are small and magical. Live in deep woods and generally are helpful

if appeased. They can be prickly and make life unpleasant if they are ignored.

Elves and Fairies often work together, as Fairies are great scouts and guards.

(Based on Sprites in the MM).

Friday

First Drug related deaths in Caron. Rivery can be paid for his drug running.

Traveling towards Botkinburg. Just outside of town they are approached by

a group of 25 or so fairies. Led by their queen. Frosty Flower, she approaches Berana

and begs her to help them chase away bad fairies led by Marrow Bone who have

taken over and are killing the giant tree that is the heart of their forest.

"Please Lady, will you lead your army to our rescue?" Aislyn asks why the fairies

approached Berana. "She is the one, at least she bears some of the signs that

the one has. You too would know if you saw her use her ring, sword, and dragon."

Berana and Aislyn are inclined to help, Aurelia and Rir want to. Rivery is convinced

when the fairies tell him that the Dark Fairies have been capturing and killing

victims and keeping their treasure. The fairy champion, Angus Ack-Dack, will

accompany the party to guide them and help versus the Dark Fairies. Aislyn and

Aurelia note that Dark Fairies are Twisted Ones.

The plunge southward through increasingly heavy forest along a narrow game

trail. Slow slog as the party has to lead horses and cut their way through low hanging

branches. About an hour from the tree as it is getting dark, they decide to camp.

They maintain good discipline and decide to bury their collection of pieces in

a lead box and recover it after the adventure. During the night a herd of deer

wanders by.

Saturday

Resume trip towards the Tree. A party of wolves moving towards the

party along the trail. Angus is sent ahead and manages to convince the wolves

to let the party pass without harm.

At the tree they see the Harpy in the tree lazily guarding the clearing.

Angus detects a couple of dark fairies with her. The party gets the drop on

them, Angus misses with a sleep arrow, but flushes the Harpy up. The party manages

to pepper her with missles and eventually she falls to Berana wielding her sword.

She was too startled to use her song. The Dark Fairies converge on Angus, striking

him. One is Commanded to Die by Aurelia, the other goes invisible, and casts

an Entangle to slow the party down. Rivery manages to snatch the downed Dark Fairy,

but he is killed during questioning. Angus drinks one of the party's healing

potions.

The party sees the entrance the Harpy and Dark Faries were guarding.

They note the Owl who hoots at them and opens a portal in the tree. The

party goes into that tunnel, follow it, and see the destroyed roots.

They get to Marrow Bone who is trying to burn the Heart of the Tree and attended

by only two Dark Fairies, the others are waiting in ambush in the other

tunnel. They move in on Marrow Bone and the Dark Fairies, but seeing the large

party, they go invisible and flee out the other entrance. Marrow Bone covers his

escape with Obscuring Mist, which discomfits the party.

The party spends some time collapsing the tunnel behind them and covering

the Heart of the Tree with soil. They resume the chase and Angus detects four

Dark Fairies waiting in ambush before a bend. The party can figure no way through

and plow into the ambush. Rir in front sees what looks like a Hydra, Marrow Bone

using his Polymorph, barreling down the corrider at him. While Dark Fairies slash

and fire darts at Rir and Rivery, Berana puts on her

ring while clutching her sword. Music begins to play, blue light shines from her,

the Dark Fairies scream and flee in terror, the others are impressed, especially

Angus. But after a moment the light begins to flicker, the music stops, and Berana

collapses. Two Dark Fairies are killed by Rivery, Aislyn, and Rir as they flee.

The party drags Berana to the surface, and the owl indicates that the

Dark Fairies fled in terror and thinks they are very confused to be asking about

a Hydra. He thanks them for saving the Heart of the Tree and suggests that

they close off the entrances to the tunnels. The party works on that while

Angus goes to fetch his people. They arrive a few hours later and thank the party

profusely. At the owl's prompting Frosty Flower writes a rune on each of

their weapons that when they go off will make the weapon +1 magical for

10 rounds. They gather the

Dark Fairies treasure trove (a set of chainmail, some rusted weapons, shields,

and helms, a +1 Dagger, jewelry worth 200 GP, and a spell book (Mage: 1st Comprehend

Language, Feather Fall, Magic Missle and Second Protection from Arrows). The

Fairies also heal up Rir and Rivery.

They spend the night in the Old Man of the Forest clearing guarded

by the Fairies.

Under the Heel Headline

Another Working Girl Brutally Murdered

======================================

A woman known only as Escalane was found brutally murdered

on a Low City side street yesterday morning. This is the

fourth working girl inhabitant of the Low City found

dead in similar circumstances in the last two weeks.

No details have been released but local residents

report that there was much blood and the unfortunate

victim was the victim of a bladed weapon. Many

are reminded of the still unsolved case of the Ripper

of Caron who murdered at least eight women in similar

circumstances in the same area of the city

over one hundred years ago.

The Town Guard has increased patrols in the area, and

warns unescorted women to stay off the streets after

dark. While this advice is valuable, it is hardly

realistic for the women of the Low City who are forced

into this profession by the lack of realistic

opportunities or any sort of social safety net provided

by the brutal regime of the Duke.

We have long called for legalization of this trade

as a means of removing the criminal element from

its activity. Any women in the trade should visit

our office, preferably when our wives are not likely

to be visiting, for further discussion of the legalization

issue.

Caron Chronicle

Rash of Prostitute Murders in the Low City

==========================================

The Town Guard reports that in the last two weeks four

prostitutes plying their trade in the

Low City have been brutally murdered. These

murders invoke memories of the Ripper of Caron who

was active more than 100 years ago. The Ripper was

never apprehended and is believed to have been responsible

for more than ten deaths.

The Town Guard warns that unescorted women should not

be on the streets of the Low City after dark, and claims that

they have increased patrols there. It is well known that the

Low City and its immoral denizens keep this reprehensible

trade alive. It would be far better if the Town Guard were

to round up any unescorted female found on the dangerous streets

of the Low City at any time and send them to the mines. They

would by much more valuable to the Duke there than creating

immorality and opportunities for murder and mayhem on the

streets of the Low City.

Sunday

The next day they travel on to Botkinburg. They arrive

before lunch and go the Bent Hook, and take rooms. They gather up the

rumors that there is a witch in the woods and there her familars infest

the town and war the goblins of people heading up the pass, that the halfling

food is dangerous, and that the Vale Lord is going insane and being poisoned

by his son. They meet the couple on their honeymoon, the Dwarf Gurdin who is

an agent of the Vale Lord trying to subvert this one, and the magic user Malin.

Gurdin tells them he is a mason trying to get work on the castle. Malin

tells them that the town is not over run with familiars, and that he was

part of an adventuring party that got ambushed as they went up the pass.

The others went back to Caron, but he offers to accompany them on another

mission.

They repair to their room, use their pieces, and detect two hits up

at the top of the pass.

Gurdin heads up the pass to warn of the party and gets captured by the

goblins. He told people at the Inn that he was going to Ludenshiem

where he claims to have relatives. They wonder why he would have left

so late in the day as he would have been out on the road at night.

The Goblins capture him and put him in the cell with Barldus.


Thu Jul 19, 2007 12:53 am
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Red Cap
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Posts: 210
Post Fourth Session Comments
Lots of fun with the first Blacktooth Ridge PDF. A really great value for $1. Also setting them up for what happens back in Caron with news reports and the consequences of the drugs from their last adventure. Another really good session.


Thu Jul 19, 2007 12:59 am
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Mogrl

Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 20660
Location: Arizona and St Louis
Post 
The full A1 module has a lot more to it as well. Including info about the Faerie Tree in Botkinburg near the Barons Keep. In the town circle by the river, I believe.

My group left offerings of pies to the faeries at this tree to placate them. They eventually found out the Faeries loved to use the pie tins as frisbees.

Plus the main antogonists in A1 are the "Red Hat Bandits" or some such name.

Have you gotten a copy of the nice Botkinburg area map?
_________________
The Ruby Lord, Earl of the Society

Next Con I am attending: http://www.neoncon.com/

My House Rules: http://www.freeyabb.com/phpbb/viewtopic ... llordgames

_________________
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.


Thu Jul 19, 2007 6:43 am
Profile
Mogrl

Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 20660
Location: Arizona and St Louis
Post 
This map:
http://www.trolllord.com/newsite/downlo ... ge_env.pdf
_________________
The Ruby Lord, Earl of the Society

Next Con I am attending: http://www.neoncon.com/

My House Rules: http://www.freeyabb.com/phpbb/viewtopic ... llordgames

_________________
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.


Thu Jul 19, 2007 6:45 am
Profile
Red Cap
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Fifth Session
Party = Aislyn (Lvl 2 Ranger), Aurelia (Lvl 2 Clearic), Berana (Lvl 2 Mage), Rir (Lvl 2 Fighter), Rivery (Lvl 3 Rogue)

Sunday

They visit the Vale Lords manor and note that there is no construction

and can see no need for some. They gate guards discount any tales of goblins,

but do tell the party that there is a bounty on killing fell creatures, but no

standing reward for the goblins. They head over the halfling side of town and

visit the Swilling Swan. Here they learn that the ridge is riddled with caves

and such and contains more gold than Caron, and that they should be sure to leave

food for the local Fay.

They head out of town and pass the bridge and investigate the ruined tower.

Rivery and Rir enter the tower and get set upon by four stirgies and with the

help of the rest of the party they survive. From the top of the tower Angus

can see the windows of Kruggle's Lair. Back at the bridge Rir can see the construction

and they head above it. Aislyn sees the tracks leading to the boulder. Rivery

pokes it with a stick, and the find the small passage ending in an unmoving door.

They climb down via ropes to the windows. When Berana tries to do this Kruggle awakens

and comes out to investigate. Aurelia commands him to die and he collapses. Aislyn tries

to bind him as the party surrounds him. He awakens tears off the bounds and seeing him

self surrounded he makes for the door trying to bash Rir out of the way. He trips over

Rir and the party finishes him off. They gather his treasure, explore the lair,

avoiding the Carrion Worms by having Angus check it out. They find the prisoners

who can tell them nothing about goblins. They kill the Koblolds and manage to free

the halfling. They find a map that has on it the location of the ruined tower (T),

Kruggle's Lair (W), the Varglog (V), Botkinberg (B), and an (S). The halfling says that he

was in a caravan, ambushed by he knows not what, fled into the forest and was captured

by the ogre who threatened to eat the prisoners and starved them. He is from Lundensheim,

and says his family owns an Inn there and will be pleased by his return. He is called

Waddo Brikker, and is not in very good shape even after a Heal Light Wounds. Angus ID's

the (S) as where the witch who can see into the future lives.

They head back to Botkinburg, given the lateness of the hour. The folks at the

Bent Hook know of Waddo and are supportive of the party. They give "sage" advice

on how the party could cross the river to get to the (V). The party decides to try in

the morning noting that the pieces are still there.

Using Detect Magic the party notes that Berana's sword is now faintly magical.


Fri Jul 20, 2007 5:21 pm
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Red Cap
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Fifth Session Comments
Shorter than normal session due to real world interference, but good

fun. Kruggle wins incompetent opponent award as I could not roll

anything decent for him except for a 20 to escape the bonds when

he awoke. He should have been tougher, but he was just a speed

bump. I punished the players with an experience point subtraction for

killing the captive, starving kobolds.

While I used the Return and Assault on Blacktooth Ridge modules (the

third was not out when these sessions took place) I have rearranged the

geography and story line for my own purposes. I had the next module in the A series, but realized that weaving the A series into the story line was not going to work as our sessions were wildly out running the pace of module releases from the Troll Lords. I also came to the same sad realization about Castle Zagyg and started to scramble for other things to fill time. Thus the use of Dungeon Crawl Classics for random events, and building a new story line on the fly.


Fri Jul 20, 2007 5:32 pm
Profile
Mogrl

Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 20660
Location: Arizona and St Louis
Post Re: Fifth Session Comments
Quote:
cinabro wrote:
Shorter than normal session due to real world interference, but good

fun. Kruggle wins incompetent opponent award as I could not roll

anything decent for him except for a 20 to escape the bonds when

he awoke. He should have been tougher, but he was just a speed

bump. I punished the players with an experience point subtraction for

killing the captive, starving kobolds.

While I used the Return and Assault on Blacktooth Ridge modules (the

third was not out when these sessions took place) I have rearranged the

geography and story line for my own purposes. I had the next module in the A series, but realized that weaving the A series into the story line was not going to work as our sessions were wildly out running the pace of module releases from the Troll Lords. I also came to the same sad realization about Castle Zagyg and started to scramble for other things to fill time. Thus the use of Dungeon Crawl Classics for random events, and building a new story line on the fly.



I've had to do much the same thing. Like when Wicked Cauldron came out I had to beef it up for 10th level play. Fortunately I know where I want the story to go and generally how I want to get there. I also have tons of modules and Dungeon adventures to use to help me get them there.
_________________
The Ruby Lord, Earl of the Society

Next Con I am attending: http://www.neoncon.com/

My House Rules: http://www.freeyabb.com/phpbb/viewtopic ... llordgames

_________________
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.


Fri Jul 20, 2007 5:42 pm
Profile
Red Cap
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Sixth Session
Party = Aislyn (Lvl 2 Ranger), Aurelia (Lvl 2 Cleric), Berana (Lvl 2 Mage),

Rir (Lvl 2 Fighter), Rivery (Lvl 3 Rogue)

Monday

Two notes waiting for the party when they awaken. One is from the

Brikkers in Luddenshiem. They thank the party for rescuing their son and

promise a reward and free room and board at their inn if they return

their son. Checking on Waddo they find him recovering. He will be fine

and able to travel in two or three days.

The other note is from the Vale Lord who congratulates them on killing

the Ogre, and invites them to the manor for a reward. They go and are ushered

inside. They meet grandfather Clement Botkin who mistakes them for his lost

companion Lewis who died twenty years ago. Volkmar Botkin has his grandfather

taken away, gives the party 50 GP for the ogre, tells them that his patrols

have not seen the goblins, and denies the existence of fairies and witches.

They ask after the Dwarf Gurdin and he directs them to Aldadius. They

meet him in a wizard's lab/library. He tells them that a group of goblins

called the Red Caps, wearing red head gear, have been raiding to the south.

Since the pass is the only way over the Scarp for some miles he guesses that

the Red Caps are based near there, but despite trying they have been unable

to find it. He tells them that there is a witch in the forest who can see

a future, but that seeing her costs a price and will leave you changed.

He has seen her, but declines to share with them what they spoke of.

They decide to visit the witch. Angus leads them there down a

very narrow and twisting path. On the way Forsty Flower comes and replaces

Angus who has Fairy business. They get to the witch after lunch, who is

wary but when they offer food to her she is happy to grant them a glimpse

into a future. They decide to do a party prophecy and she says "A canyon of

stone, a river of blood from someone you know, a black figure with red eyes,

and a desert underground." They then bicker about whether to have individual

prophecies and decide to do it. They push Berana to go first, and she gets,

"A broken elf, who needs you to complete a plan, which would be very bad,

and his creatures are all around." All the others fail to get a prophecy.

They ask about goblins, and she says they are horrible creatures who she

deals with. Her dwarf cleans up the mess. He does not know anything about

red caps as there is usually not too much left to haul away. She asks if there

is something they would like, love potions, healing, but she points out that

her magic only seems to work when there is a need.

They head back to the Bent Hook. There they see newspapers from Caron

with news of the return of the Ripper and the death of prostitutes. That night

they use their pieces and note an extra set in Caron.

Tuesday

In the morning the Malkin family begs for their help as their two sons have

been missing for the last few days. They left with a sword.

First thing in the morning the party heads up the pass. Aislyn detects tracks

that lead to a thicket of bushes. They see behind the bushes a short cleft ending

in a door that is ajar. There is rubble in the cleft and they note ancient runes

among the rubble. Realizing that it would take hours to rebuild the stuff they

peak in. They see a goblin getting a beer who does not notice them. They

jump him and try to intorrogate him. He dies under Rivery's knife work. They

move in and kill a second under similar circumstances. They move beyond the entrance

hall and take out two more goblins. At this point the four remaining goblins

weapon up, and sortie out. One strikes a good blow on Rir, and the noise attracts

the two Gnolls from the central hall way. The party defeats them and looks about.

They smell cooking to the right and Forsty Flower exploring ahead hears a large

group of goblins. They head towards the quieter left, surprise and kill the three

gnolls, and find the four prisoners. They confront Gurdin who admits that he is

working for the Vale Lord of Luddenshiem paying off the Red Hats to raid here.

The party decides that leaving now would make it very hard to re-enter thus they

arm the Malkin twins, shackle Gudrin and the human, Barldus, together, and tell them to

take them back to town. When they get back to town Gurdin will be watched

closely, no one ever trusted him, but the human will slip away and flee to

Luddenshiem. The Malkin's are not particularly competant and the new administration

is also slow, thus it will be some time before a patrol comes from town.

They head down the middle passage and are stymied by the evil chapel. A goblin

priest enters and Aislyn fells him with an arrow. They get a clue to use a Detect Magic

and note that the black strip down the middle is not magic. They enter the sub-leader's

room, and hear the argument going on in the priests room. In the hall way they are surprised

by another priest who tries to command and darkness. Forsty Flower charms the priest and

convince him to attack into the priests room. The attack goes well with Berana's

Sleep taking out a goblin and the hobgoblin guard. The charmed goblin takes out a goblin,

but is felled by the leaders thrown dagger. The priest fires a fear which sends Rivery

and Rir fleeing. Forsty Flower is able to calm Rivery, but Rir is almost to the entrance

by the time he stops. Another Sleep fells the priest and a command from Aurelia fells

the leader. The party kills the fallen, gathers treasure, and contemplates what to

do next. They do find a box that connects back to Luddensheim.


Tue Jul 24, 2007 11:41 pm
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Sixth Session Comments
Another short session due to real world interference. Excellent fun in Blacktooth Ridge. Great module with its PDF additions. Three sessions

so far and at least one more to come. Foreshadowing of the next adventure works well as the characters wonder what is going on back in Caron.


Tue Jul 24, 2007 11:45 pm
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Red Cap
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Seventh Session
Party = Aislyn (Lvl 2 Ranger), Aurelia (Lvl 2 Cleric), Berana (Lvl 2 Mage), Rir (Lvl 2 Fighter), Rivery (Lvl 3 Rogue)

Tuesday

More Drug related deaths in Caron. News reports in Under the Heel.

Under the Heel

Rash of Unusual Drug Related Deaths

===================================

Over the last few days the Order of Aescapulus from Mercy Hospital in the

Low City reports an unusual number of drug related deaths caused by a

previously unknown drug. Apparently the drug is a dried leaf that

when smoked becomes a powerful hallucinogen. Its effects vary with

some falling into a trance-like state and reporting dreams of a nature

that cannot reprinted in this newspaper. Others report the feeling

of being invisible or acquiring similar supernatural powers. The most

dangerous effect seems to be the illusion of being surrounded by demonic

creatures which invokes a violent response in defense against the "demons".

The altercations that break out have resulted in a number of deaths,

the Order thinks at least five, and warns against the use of dangerous,

substances of unknown efficacy.

We cannot help, but be suspicious of this new dangerous drug

sweeping the Low City. The Town Guard claims that their efforts

to suppress the drug trade are primarily hampered by a lack cooperation

from the citizenry. This is hardly surprising since no one with any sense

willingly cooperates with their oppressors. The only solution to this

problem is more opportunities both educationally and economically for

the oppressed citizens of the Low City. Rather than this sensible approach,

the instruments of the Duke's repression, report that they will increase

patrols and send anyone caught dealing or trafficking illegal substances

to the mines for at least five years. Even casual users are to be punished

to the fullest extent of the law.

===================================

After some debate the party decides to press on. They try to pick

the lock on a door through which they hear some movement. They fail and

Rir tries to break it down with his axe. He fails and the Bugbears within

call out. The party claims they have brought some beer, but the Bugbears

come out ready to fight. One is Slept by Berana, and the other surrendurs.

The party kills the sleeping one and questions the other one. He tells him

that he simply works to guard the priest who promises that the Horned One is

returning. He tells them that there is a harem with more Bugbear guards,

and some guards on the caverns at the rear of the dungeon where the priest

conducted sacrifices. They tie him up and continue to the rear of the

dungeon. They fight with the five goblins at the rear of the dungeon,

aided by a Hold Person scroll from Berana, and Rivery sneaking around

the rear to back-stab they kill the five. They ignore the yummy worm pie,

and press into the rear of the dungeon. They see the lake room, send

Frosty Flower ahead who senses something about to fire off, and decide to

leave. They get out fine.

Back in Botkinburg the town is in an uproar. The Malkin twins

brought the prisoners back to the Swilling Swan. They locked and shackled

the Dwarf and locked up the human. They find the human gone and the

Dwarf with his throat cut in a locked room. They are brought to the

lords manor where they find controlled chaos as the lords guards are

preparing. They are planning to raid the goblin dungeon and seal the

entrance. The vale lord Malkin is planning to lead. The heroes tell

him that their magic users need to recover their spells for six hours,

and they will be ready to go back. Malkin siezes on this and decides

to call up the town militia. Forsty Flower and Angus interchange.

They talk with the Halfling from Luddensheim and he points out to them

that the actual Vale Lord of Botkinburg is sick and if Botkinburg is

under duress at the time of succession the Lord of Luddensheim might

be named the successor.

Some hours later as the sun is setting, the party, Lord Botkin,

a knight, a sargent, 15 guards, and about 20 townsmen set out to the dungeon.

The guards lead with the leaders in the middle and the townsmen bringing

up the rear. At the dungeon the guards lead over the river. The remaining

goblins release their dam and the guards are caught in an avalanch and

flood. Two are seriously injured and those plus four townsmen retreat

back to Botkinburg. The rest enter the dungeon and find it empty. The

goblins have left. They head to the rear. There is a short sharp

fight with the Ghost Naga versus the Knight, Rivery, and Angus on the

other side of the lake. The Knight does most of the work in slaying

to Ghost Naga (note to self: forgot that they had no armor and that the

Naga regenerates).

The whole bunch tries to explore the caverns. They provoke

a cieling collapse that injures Berana and Angus. Angus needs healing

by Aurelia. The party alone continues on. At the treasury room, Rivery

is nailed by the trap, and Berana reads a scroll of Knock to opens the door.

Inside they gather the rings and rune stones. They also find the sacrificial

altar. Their pieces show that the pieces they have been pursuing have left

the dungeon and are heading west.

They all depart the dungeon. The Vale Lord and his men stay behind

to seal up the dungeon. The party recieves 1500 GP from the Vale Lord, Berana

and Aldadius look at the treasure. They find a magic shield, a magic whistle,

and a scroll of Bless that Aurelia reads to learn the spell. Aldadius does

not know what to make of the rigns and runes and suggest that they bring

them to the University in Caron.

Wednesday

The party debates what to do next. They want to head to Luddensheim to

chase the pieces.


Thu Jul 26, 2007 1:34 am
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Seventh Session Comments
Generally a good session, but the party was mostly reduced to spectators at the end. I am sort of torn by this as they did well to leave the dungeon when they were depleted learning their lesson from the last module, but they leave no watch on the dungeon exit letting their quarry escape and letting the goblins escape and leave a trap behind. They want to chase the pieces that they missed, but I do not think a party of mostly Lvl 2 is ready for A2. I launch a scare campaign to get them to return to Caron.


Thu Jul 26, 2007 1:54 am
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Red Cap
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Posts: 210
Post Eighth Session
Party = Aislyn (Lvl 2 Ranger), Aurelia (Lvl 2 Cleric), Berana (Lvl 2 Mage), Rir (Lvl 2 Fighter), Rivery (Lvl 3 Rogue)

Wednesday

Upon being scared to death by the Castle Keeper the party decides to return

to Caron before taking on the problem at Luddensheim. They speak with Waddo Brikker

and he tells them of the Gipsheim, Dredstun, the Diamond Dale (diamond mine), and

of the bandits led by Miles. He tells them the Dwarves of Diamond Dale have

disappeared in the last few years. He thinks he can catch a caravan back to Luddensheim,

and thanks them for their efforts.

They are approached by the towns mayor and Aldadious who asks them to stay on

for a bit to participate in a celebration and talk to a reporter. They relunctantly

agree. There is a small town celebration with food and honoring of the injured

militia. The party is given credit for defeating the Red Hats, but a prominant place

is given to the Botkin Vale Lord heir. Nothing is said of the Vale Lord of Luddensheim.

The reporter, Dranat Rotholia, arrives from Caron. He interviews them and they give

him some information. They claim they were attracted to Botkinburg by the Trouble

Board, and do make it clear that while they delivered a blow to the Red Hats,

that further trouble should be expected from them. They also mention that they defeated

an ogre and rescued some prisoners. They cannot come up with a name

for themselves. The reporter tells them he writes stories and submits them to the

editors of the journals in Caron where they are then heavily editted. He lies low

since some of the stories are upsetting to the authorities.

The party heads back to Caron, stopping at an Inn as night falls about half

way back to Caron. Using their pieces they note that one piece has moved south of

Luddensheim in the region of the villages.

Thursday

Newspaper headline story in Caron:

"Attempted Robbery in High City" Foiled by Dr. Copelius mechanomagical creations.

When the party arrives at Caron they are caught in a long line of people

being delayed by the inspections at the gate. They see vendors, one of them

selling Fried Rat is working fo the Thieves Guild. He speaks with Rivery telling

him that the inspections are for counterband, that he can get stuff through to be

picked later at the bookshop, and that trying to get around using Aurelia's nobility

will only lead to a longer and more thorough inspection. Of news of Caron he

reports that the Ripper seems to be back and the drug related craziness. They spend

the afternoon in the line. It begins to rain.

The inspection takes some time. There is much delay as they go through the

boxes with rings from the Varglog and the party dispenses a bribe to get in as

darkness falls. As they plan to break up for the evening winding their way through

the Low City they hear a scream. Rivery recognizes it as is Laurette, one of

his girlfriends. They rush to the sound and amid the darkness and rain they

see a black figure with glowing red eyes bending over something in the street.

As they approach the figure jumps up on to a near-by building and they cannot

track it the darkness and mist. They find Laurette and see her chest has been

ripped open. They hear the Town Guard who comes up on the scene. A search finds

a large square toed, bloody footprint. They also notice a bird bone. The

guard is led by Captain Andretti who recognizes the party. He is very distressed

by the death, and has his men recover the parties weapons and escort them to the

Ten Bells. He covers Laurette's body with his cloak, admonishes Rivery to

take better care of his friends, and waits for her to be taken away.

On the way the sargent tells them that the Ten Bells is an abandoned tavern

where the Ripper's last victim was found, the area around it is unpleasent,

haunted, and a guard has been posted near it since the new victims have started

to show up. They find the body of the posted guard who has been slain and

carefully dissected. Their weapons show up. They have a great deal of trouble getting

in being very frightened by the entrance, but eventually they get in.

The town guard is too frightened to join them.

Within they avoid fighting with the ghost Mary Kell, trying to soothe

her and ask why she is so violent. They kill the dire rat, Aislyn falls into the Bone

Jelly, but they pull her out on robe not even noticing the monster. Mary

directs them to the basement where they tangle with the thugs. They kill two

and capture one. They learn of Back Alley Clah. They find the secret area,

have sense enough not to disturb the pentagram, gather up the books there,

Rivery solves the blood fountain, and they go down below to the Undine's

prison. Aislyn takes a fireball recovering the key, Rivery gets electrocuted,

and they are stymied by the desert room. They use the pieces and note the

absence of Alwine's pieces, an extra one somewhere below the Low City,

and the one within a day oscillating in distance with it disappearing

at its furthest. They plan to go back and collect

supplies stored in the smuggler's lair. The Redcap attacks them as they

come up the elevator. The battle is tough with all of the party contributing

to the kill. Key was Rivery scoring a critical hit which imobilized the

Redcap. Berana powered up, scoring a sword hit, and lasting few rounds

before collapsing. As proof of the death they take a foot and hand.

They burn the rest.

They decide that they have to recuperate at the Temple of Athena. On

their way out they find Captain Andretta and the guards. They tell them of

the death of the Ripper and the guard moves in on the tavern. At the temple

they are healed up. When they describe the Undine's prison, Biassay realizes

they have found the prison of a Twisted One from the Chaos Wars. He immediately

informs the other religious leaders, the Mage's Guild, and the Duke. They

have decided to reset and isolate the prison, rather than do something more. and it takes them seven days.

Friday

Newbriar appears on the Trouble Board.

The party scatters to their respective lairs.

Rivery gets an earful at the bookshop. Osburn tells him that 1) Alwine was

trying to take over Thieves Guild. Apparently he was bankrolled by someone with

money. He has been defeated and has left town. He has a girlfriend called Inatia.

2) Vergo Lister the head of the Thieves Guild does not trust Rivery. He will test

him at some point. Osburn advises that responding to the test with complete

obediance is the only option. 3) Rivery earns 1600 GP from the sale of drugs

from Newbriar. 4) The "Working Girls" of Caron appreciate his efforts on the

Ripper. Rivery gets a coin from them good for free access to their services

for the next year. Osburn advises him that they are a great source of information.

Aurelia gets a note from her brother Bancel asking how she is doing?

Berana tells Uthnel of what happens when she wears the ring and welds

the sword. He opines that her kit is not complete. The light should be like

the sun. Thus the power is fed by her and she will only be able to sustain it

for a short time. Her father is doing well and should be awake within a week.

There is no news on her mother.

Rir visits Fahet. His weapon is repaired and there is no news from

his father.

Aislyn goes to the Temple of Artemis and Darthia gives her the letter

below. She tells Aislyn that no one knows how the letter arrived. It just

showed up among the regular letters. She can send a reply via the regular

mail back to the Elvish lands.

Letter for Aislyn arrives via Darthia. It is Thorakil congratulating Aislyn

on gathering seven more pieces and asking if she requires any further assistance.

Dear Aislyn

I cannot tell you how pleased I am that you have managed to gather seven

more of the statues. I hope you have not had too much trouble finding them.

Unfortunately I suspect that I will not be able to ascertain more of their function

until you have gathered at least half of the total. Have you learned anything

yourself? Are others seeking the items? If so what do you know about them?

That is why are they seeking the statues and do they know anything that would

shed light on their function? I look forward to your prompt reply.

Thorakil

Ace of Sapir

Aislyn plans to write Thorakil giving all she has learned of the pieces and those

seeking them. She explicitly will not will not mention Berana and the

Prophecy of the Return.

Rivery spends time selling and IDing treasure. He has a cursed dagger

that presents as +1, but is actually a Backbiter (wound caused shows up on the

welder). He also gives Bitter Root (+1 to Wisdom, -1 to Intelligence

for one hour, addictive) to Osburn he will get 100 GP in 8 days. They have

a scroll which gives a new spell of Chill Touch (1st Level Wizard, Burning

Hands accept delivers cold damage), and a spell book which gives new spells

of Disrupt Undead (0th Level Wizard, destroys single 1hd undead, does 1d6 damage

to higher level), Gentle Repose (3rd Level Cleric, preserves dead body or

body part for 2hr/Level), Halt Undead (3rd Level Wizard, Hold Person that

works on Undead).

An extra edition of the newspapers come out with news of the demise

of the Ripper.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Under the Heel Extra

Ripper Brought Down

===================

In a remarkable development the Ripper, believed responsible for

at least five deaths in the last month, was destroyed yesterday evening

by a group of adventurers. Unfortunately in a final orgy of violence the

Ripper is believed to have killed three more people yesterday evening.

Sources within

the Town Guard report that the evening began with the death of an exotic

dancer known as Luarette in a Low City street. In typical Ripper fashion

she was eviscerated in a public street. Apparently her screams attracted

a group of adventurers traveling through the Low City, and a troop of Town Guards.

The only trace of the Ripper was a bloody, square toed foot print and

some manner of bird bone. The Guard convinced the adventurers to

investigate the Ten Bells.

The Ten Bells is well known as the locale of the last of the original Ripper

murders, and is shunned as haunted by the citizens of the Low City. There

the adventurers found the body of the Town Guardsmen Halbrand who had

been neatly dissected by the Ripper earlier in the evening. Entering

the abandoned tavern, after much hesitation during the height of one of

the noisiest thunder storms this spring, the adventures tangled with a

dire rat and its brood, some sort of corrosive ooze, and apparently the

ghost of the original Ripper's last victim, Mary Kell. The ghost revealed

that the Ripper was hiding in the basement. There the adventurers stumbled

on some thugs who work for the notorious smuggler Back Alley Clay who were

hiding in a secret warehouse connected to both the Ten Bells and the sewers.

Two of the thugs were dispatched and one was captured and will be remanded

to the mines.

In another secret chamber the adventures encountered the

remains of a necromantic laboratory apparently set up by Henry Crofter,

the last known owner of the Ten Bells. Members of the Mage's Guild speculate

that he was attempting to revivify Mary Kell, and that his clumsy necromantic

dabbling attracted the creature perpetrating the recent Ripper murders.

Beyond a disgusting trap room the Ripper confronted the adventurers.

Members of the Mage's Guild describe the creature as a sort of Dark

Fairy imbued with necromantic powers. It was probably attracted by left over

negative energy from the original Ripper murders and powered up by the lingering

necromantic energy in Henry Crofter's lab. The struggle between the adventurers

and the creature was desperate, with a key blow struck early in the fight rendering

the creature immobile. Apparently the creature was able to regenerate itself

by sucking life energy from some of its victims with an icy stare. Eventually

the creature was defeated and the its body burned. Its lair was a horrofic

torture chamber with blood and viscera coated walls.

The battered adventurers left the building turning things over to the

Town Guards and repairing to the Temple of Athena where they received care

and were allowed to recuperate after their heroic efforts. Upon exploration

of the building the Town Guard found another eviscerated victim, an unknown

woman, in the building's attic. Accompanying her was Ewan Treborn a known

confidence man, who had apparently been forced to watch the murder of the

woman. He has been turned over to the Order of Aescapulus who

report that he will be moved to the Mare Stone asylum for long term care.

Currently the Ten Bells has been cordoned off and is the subject of

intense efforts by both members of the Mage's Guild and the Temple of Athena.

They say that they are cleansing the locale of lingering negative necromantic

energies to be sure that Ripper murders do not occur again.

The adventuring party is new on Caron scene. There are five

and they are a diverse mix. There is a male halfling who is known to have worked

in the appropriation of property trade. It is gratifying that he is putting

his talents to more beneficial pursuits. It is said that he struck the crucial

blow on the horrible creature. There is a female elvish ranger who apparently

struck the killing blow. There is a stereotypically dour and taciturn dwarven

warrior armed with an oversized battle axe. There is a priestess of Athena

who has been identified as Aurelia Ashton, the daughter of Trevelyan, Vale Lord

of Ashton. It is most gratifying that a member of the nobility can be found

putting herself in harms way for the betterment of society. Finally there is

a very young half-elvish mage, who is the daughter of the famous entertainer

Kalabash. Kalabash is still recovering from injuries suffered two weeks ago

during a performance in the Low Square that was marred by Town Guard violence.

Lacking anything better we will call them the Ripper Five, and hope that

we see more of them in the future.

While this newspaper normally takes a dim view of the activities of

the Town Guard we cannot help but applaud their efforts yesterday. They

realized that they were unable to deal with the Ripper on their own and

turning to adventurers such as the Ripper Quintet was a wise course of action.

We only wish that wisdom had come to them earlier and that similar wisdom

would come to the Duke who could have dealt with the Ripper by sending in

the Guardians. The butcher's bill from this incident stands at eight, which

could have been much reduced by prompt action from the Town Guard or the

brutal regime of the Duke.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Egged on by Rivery they decide a suitable reward will be to take

possession of the Ten Bells. They first go to Captain Andretti. He is sympathetic,

giggles when they threaten to expose the calousness of the city administration.

He tells them that abandoned property reverts to the Duke. Thus he will happily

write a letter suggesting that they be awarded the building. They have to

go the Office of Abandoned Property. Come back tomorrow for his letter.

Thinking this is a good idea they go up to the Mage's Guild and meet

Master Ingram. He mentions that they are busy dealing with what the

party uncovered and that if they came back in a week

he would be happy to help them out on this matter. At the Temple of Athena

where they find that Biassay is too busy to see them. They leave a message.

Rivery goes to see Inatia. She is upset with Alwine and demands

75 GP to tell Rivery that Alwine has returned to his home town of Graham.

The party learns that Graham is where Zagyg, the famous rouge mage is from,

and that its location corresponds to the "Z" on their map.


Fri Jul 27, 2007 2:49 am
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Red Cap
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 210
Post Eighth Session Comments
Excellent session. Dungeon Crawl Classic Legend of the Ripper is

an excellent module. Both players and Castle keeper have an

excellent time. They are also getting set up for the next adventure and a meeting with Dr. Copelius.


Fri Jul 27, 2007 2:55 am
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Mogrl

Joined: Mon May 01, 2006 7:00 am
Posts: 20660
Location: Arizona and St Louis
Post 
Very cool. Yes I would save A2 until they are third to 4th level. Who is the "rouge" mage?
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Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.


Fri Jul 27, 2007 4:50 am
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