Crucibal Beyond

Session 19 - A Mistake Made and A Blessing Received

16th of Morpheus to 2nd of Treedirge (Fall)
Year 333 of The Dark

Dramatis Personae:

Needrik as Taki – That Damn Cat!
Glen as Azule von Trunt – Confused wannabe vampire
Setho as Malygos Onyxian – Dragonelf of Darkness
Gary as Kellan Warfang – Half-orc Chop!
Dave as Manus Firebeard – Mumbling standard issue dwarf

So… after slaying a few frost giants with uncommon ease, and facing some rather peculiar traps, and facing some Melmoth poser sorcerer, the party raids the Hall of the Frost Giant Jarl and demands the Sunshard. Only… there isn’t one. The party goofed. This wasn’t their destination after all. They were to go to the Taiga giants to the north on the shores of the Northreach peninsula. The Jarl quakes before the power of the party and asks them to leave lest more of his giants perish by their hands. The party agrees and leaves the fortress of the Crimson Snow.
They finally reach the encampment of the Taiga giants in a conifer forest near a river. Malygos decides to stay behind while Azule and Taki go invisible and make their way into the camp to steal their Sunshard. The object of their desire is located in their shrine which is heavily guarded and headed by an old crone of a Taiga giantess who is apparently blind. They did the impossible and secured the Sunshard off the high, iron tripod from which it was ensconced. But the crone noticed the theft and they RAN! They were chased by three dire tigers that the giants loosed after them. Now visible, Taki got to Malygos first after killing the lead tiger. They then waited for Azule who was being chased by the remaining two. However, one of the tigers left the side of the other in her lust to get Azule. Bad mistake for the beast. Now Azule could single them out. Just as Azule made it to the safety of Malygos and Taki, the party attacked each tiger as they came in. Soon, they were all dead.
Having successfully secured the Sunshard, the party made their way back to Northreach and paid for passage on board the merchant caravel, The Twilight Eternal, manned by Cap’n Edward. They then set sail for Cape Rapine on the Blood Coast.

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Session 18 - A Barbarian Befriended and some Frost Giants Felled

9th to the 16th of Morpheus (Fall)
Year 333 of The Dark

Dramatis Personae
Needrik as Taki
Setho as Malygos Onyxian
Dave as Manus Firebeard
Gary as Kellan Warfang
Mike as Gromulongus Tendersack

  • The party spends a week in Northreach as Taki creates scrolls and magic items up the wahzoo!
  • During this time, Azule’s Transformation occurs.
  • Malygos does some legwork as to where the sunshard can be located. He finds out about a tribe of exiled barbarians called The Rimereavers who may know where to look.
  • On the 14th of Morpheus the party moves west of Northreach to find the Rimereavers. They are located beyond the hilly pass guarded by winter wolves. They introduce themselves to the warriors of their tribe and eventually to their leader, Argus the Elder.
  • After being told of the situation, Argus says that they know of a clan of giants who worship a ‘piece of the sun’. They live to the north and are harassed repeatedly by the frost giant clan called The Crimson Snow.
  • Argus gives the party a barbarian called Brundeis Wolfsnout who can sniff out the way to the giants.
  • So the party wishes Argus and his tribe well and leave for the giants. Which giants? When Brundeis asks the party, “Where are we going?” His answer is, “The frost giants.” “Are you sure?” asks the barbarian. “Yes, let’s go.” the party retorts. So, Brundeis leads them to the lair of the Crimson Snow.
  • En route, they are attacked by a pair of vicious dire snow tigers which they quickly dispatch.
  • Two days later they make it to a an incline to a mountain where Brundeis says the Crimson Snow fortress is located. As they make their way in, Kellan warns the party about ambushes which the frost giants are known for.
  • Indeed, three frost giants attack from the snows above the valley, hurling rocks and then closing in for the kill. Taki, Kellan and Manus were teleported into the midst of the giants and took the battle to them. The giants were scattered and did not expect such an attack. Malygos and Grom air walked to the site. One giant tried to escape and Taki and company teleported back and stopped him. By the time Grom and Malygos made it back to the party, the giant was slain.
  • Then the party encountered another trio of giants en route down the mountain. This was a bad place for the giants as they could not maneuver well on the narrow road which fell eighty feet below on one side. One giant tried to climb his way to the party but slipped, fell on Manus and almost took him with him down the eighty feet to his doom. In the end, all the giants were killed.
  • The party continued onward…
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Session 17 - A Recalcitrant Ranger and a Waterbound Witch

13th of Exregulan to 9th of Morpheus (Fall)
Year 333 of The Dark

Dramatis Personae
Needrik as Taki
Setho as Malygos Onyxian
Glen as Azule von Trunt
Gary as Kellan Warfang
Dave as Manus Firebeard
Mike as Gromulongus Tendersack
Brian as Icarus Thornbirch

  • While en route to Northreach, Taki and Kellan make out a strange noise in the distance behind them. It is an avalanche. A lone horseman approaches the party from the direction of the avalanche. He introduces himself as Icarus Thronbirch of Evercrest. He came to warn the party that Linnaeus’ intentions may not be altogether altruistic. He hands the party the Sunshards that were in Linnaeus’ keeping. Icarus stole them and came to return them to the rightful owners so that the quest may be completed.
  • The weather then turns foul and Icarus, a ranger and demon-hunter, guides the party to make shelter in the hillside to wait out the blizzard.
  • After the storm subsides, a voice calls out the party from their shelter. It is a lone, two weapon wielder. An elf by the look of him.
  • The elf declares that he is from Evercrest acting on authority of the High Priest Linnaues Hardcastle of Apollo. He demands that Icarus the traitor be handed up for judgment.
  • The party refuses and immediately attacks the lone elf. The elf then shapechanges into an adult silver dragon!
  • The fight is brief as the party makes short work of the dragon. Battered and bleeding, Taki calls off the fight and tells the dragon to return to Linnaeus and tell him that he is to be trusted no longer and that the party’s only concern is the quest to eliminate The Dark Firmament. The dragon limps away.
  • The party then travels east and a couple days later encounters a strange, watery, fey female embracing a halfling in the cold river ahead. There is a stone bridge crossing the river.
  • After Taki and Malygos try to talk to the river sprite (a rusalka), they get the impression that the halfling is mentally controlled and is being sexually assaulted by the rusalka’s animated hair.
  • A long and drawn out battle ensues over the liberation of the innocent halfling. The rusalka’s animated hair batters the party and captures a few of them (Kellan and Taki to name a few). Meanwhile, she conjures some water elementals to aid in her survival. The party is hard pressed to find a tactic that works against her, but eventually and at a huge expense of resources, the party is victorious. The rusalka and her elemental companions are slain.
  • The halfling is grateful indeed and introduces himself as Gromulongus Tendersack of Northreach. He is a lorekeeper and is en route to San Simeon to eke out a new career there as a sage in their ancient, ancestral homelands.
  • The party informs Grom that they are heading for Northreach, not San Simeon, but Gromulongus relents and says that he is obviously not equipped to survive such a journey and will instead aid the party in their quest.
  • The party then fights off a rampage of four female frost drakes searching for food.
  • A few days later, a frost worm explodes from the snowy pack and attacks the party. This battle nearly became a TPK! The frost worm was bad enough, but when it made its death throes it nearly finished off the party. Many hero points were spent in that conflict.
  • Weary and seeking civilizaton, the party nears a hilly pass guarded by two winter wolves. They decide to pass them by and get to the city of Northreach. Which they do.
  • At Northreach, a large city on the shores of the cliffs overlooking the Ocean D’Arque, the party splits up to do their respective things. Taki holes up at a tavern, sets up his lab and starts making magical items. Azule and Malygos go to the marketplace and buy some badly needed items and do some legwork on where the Sunshard can be found in this region. And I think Azule hypnotized a shopkeep into giving away all his wares and then say the word, “Dick.”
  • The End
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Session 16 - A Green Dragon Freed and a Blue Dragon Felled

Dramatis Personae
Needrik as Swatulu Taki, Earthmage huntress and barbarian Aw’Zinti
Setho as Malygos Onyxian, half-elf scion of Skylurk Fei’s legacy
Glen as Azule von Trunt, female dhampir violinist
Gary as Kellan Warfang, half-orc barbarian of the Gruul Mountains

10th of Exregulan to the 18th of Exregulan (Fall)
Year 333 of The Dark

  • The party disembarks from the Pisces and hitch rides on river barges to Lor Pando. There they have an audience with Steward Malcom Thunder letting him know they have returned successfully with the skull of Airoquinn and plan to re-hire Gareth Blackhammer to guide them to Vitriolis’ lair again.
  • The Steward grants their request. Blackhammer guides them to the Norderwoods and to Vitriolis Vyle’s lake as before.
  • But en route, they are attacked by a trio of Invisible Stalkers just as they reach the Norderwoods. After a long and drawn out battle, Taki tries a Glitterdust spell and finally reveals the attackers. It isn’t long after that the party dispatches them.
  • Taki remarks that these creatures are usually solitary; that they have united against them means only one thing: Mages have sent these stalkers to assassinate them. But what mages would do this? Are they in the employ of someone else or are they working on their own?
  • Whatever the case, the party makes it to the dragon’s lake. When they get there, Malygos and Azule notice the bodies of strange, skeletal corpses lying about.
  • Taki calls up Vitriolis and he emerges from his underwater lair. Taki is alone at the island with the iron throne and places the skull upon it. He intones a plea for Airoquinn, twin brother of Thraxx the Maker to appear and release the curse on the dragon.
  • The ghost of Airoquinn speaks out of the whirlwind arising from the skull, enveloping the throne and the island. “I am the friend of dragons. Sacred they are to me and all my kin. By the power of Thraxx, they have returned to Crucibal. Who dares to shackle what should have been free? Let all curses be dispelled for this dragon and Death to all Hardcastles!”
    Then he disappeared.
  • Vitriolis Vyle launched into the air. “I’m free! I’m finally free! I shall soon see the limits of my boundaries no more!” the dragon proclaimed as he flew away to the south.
  • At this time, Azule dove into the lake and investigated the underwater cavern that housed the dragon’s treasure. Realizing she had little time to dally, she took her Bag of Holding and tried to stuff it with as much gold as she could.
  • Meanwhile, Taki calls for the green dragon to return to finalize the deal and get the Sunshard.
  • The dragon hears her cry and returns quickly. He lands on the water. Taki tells him that she needs the Sunshard as he promised. He agrees to honor the deal and dives into the lake to get the party’s reward.
  • Vitriolis swims into his cave and finds the hapless Azule turning around to face him with a bag in her hands. Vitriolis, knowing she can’t be down here forever, waits her out by blocking the only exit and staring at her…smiling.
  • Azule finally drops the bag and then passes out. Vitriolis grabs her (leaving the bag behind) and brings her up to Taki on the central island. “Is this how I am paid? With treachery?” the dragon roars. “What are you talking about?” Taki asks. “This woman was in my lair trying to steal my hoard. Give me one reason why I shouldn’t kill her right now.” Taki implored that if he just hands over the Sunshard they will leave him in peace." Being successful with her diplomatic speech, the dragon dove once more to fetch the Sunshard. He came back up with it, spat it at Taki’s feet and said, “The deal is done. Get thee gone.” He then went into his lair to sulk and protect it from further invasion.
  • An incensed Taki ferried the body to Malygos on the eastern shore just as two Baykoks flew over them and fired a battery of negatively-charged arrows at them.
  • Taki was knocked down before she had a chance to act. Kellan and Malygos had to fight them off which was difficult since they remained flying all the time. The Baykoks were undead and so Malygos had a few tricks up his sleeve. But in the end, the Baykoks were slain and Taki was stabilized. Malygos also restored Azule back to consciousness.
  • The party left before more them came. Kellan and Taki surmised that these Baykoks which matched the skeletal corpses they found around the lake were the vanguard of the demonic/undead army that attacked Mt. Evercrest.
  • They returned to Lor Pando and took their respite at the Hack and Slash Tavern. They didn’t dare announce to everyone that they just freed a green dragon to the north. So, they kept their adventure secret and drank a few ales.
  • The next day, at the same tavern, a pair of bounty-hunters tried to apprehend the party. They were not successful. As a final act of audacity, Azule turned into a tree right in the bat-wings of the tavern. Her spellblight was in full swing.
  • The party then said their leave of Gareth Blackhammer and Malcom Thunder and made for the Teleport Chamber in Silverhome.
  • Taki now knew the spell Teleport and used the Teleportation Dais as a focus to get back to Mount Evercrest. (I think this is how they got around using a Sunshard to power it for the return trip).
  • The party teleported to Mt. Evercrest much to everyone’s surprise. High Priest Linnaeus meets them and asks how they fared. When Azule mentions the Airoquinn ghost and that he said “Death to all Hardcastles”, Linnaeus gets paranoid and calls up a contingent of Apollonian Guards to protect him.
  • The party, especially Kellan Warfang, is incensed at this display of bravado. After the half-orc tries to explain to Linnaeus that they did not share Airoquinn’s views, the party learns that Linnaeus’ surname is also Hardcastle.
  • Linnaeus apologizes for the mixup and sends the guards away. He says that Evercrest has been rebuilt in their absence and the Sunshards are safe.
  • The party informs him that they need to secure the next Sunshard. They agree that Northreach would be the closest destination, so they rest for the evening and leave in the morning.
  • The party heads south until they see the Tyrus Border Towers. They decide that they should keep to the hills until they reach Northreach since they don’t want any attention from Tyrus.
  • They journey for a few days through the cold and snow. They are increasing in altitude and they afraid of getting lost. Then, overhead, an adult blue dragon swoops down on them to consume them. The party gets into action and after another long, protracted battle, the dragon was slain. Highlights of the battle: The blue dragon connects on a vital strike after casting shield on himself. Taki casting Mirror Image and Enlarge. Azule turning into a tree for the second time and getting fellow compatriots in area effect spells. Malygos channeling his negative energy into his weapon. And Kellan playing dead after being walloped by the dragon’s bite and claws. I believe the party got hit a couple times with his lightning breath.
  • And that was where we ended…
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Session 15 - A Dragon's Deal and a Relic Stolen

Dramatis Personae
Needrik as Taki
Setho as Malygos Onyxian
Gary as Kellan Warfang
Dave as Manus Firebeard
Glen as Azule von Trunt

4th to the 10th of Exregulan (Fall) — Year 333 of The Dark

  • The party decides to use the Teleportation Disk to Vitriolis Vyle. In so doing, they give up one of the Sunshards.
  • Much to their surprise, the party ends up in the undercity of Lor Pando called Silverhome. The dwarves there are surprised to see anyone come out of the Teleport Chamber since it hasn’t seen use in over two centuries.
  • Manus befriends a dwarf commoner called Antril Megahelm who shows them the way out of Silverhome and to the Palace of the Steward, Malcom Thunder.
  • They meet Malcom Thunder and he is very amiable and concerned for the party’s welfare and the success of their mission. He introduces the party to Gareth Blackhammer, a ranger familiar with the Northern Wilds who knows the way to Vitriolis’ lair.
  • The party informs the Steward of Lor Pando that a band of undead and demons are en route to Vitriolis Vyle to take the Sunshard from him. This alarms Malcom.
  • He immediately sends them with supplies and healing elixirs to the Northern Wilds. Gareth leads the way.
  • They find the lake and the island in the center of the lake. On the island is an iron throne. Bubbles emerge from the west end of the lake. Taki water walks on the lake and addresses the dragon.
  • The dragon answers from a place other than the bubbles. Off to the east in the forest. Taki and Vitriolis strike a deal. If Taki and her party can secure the skull of Thraxx the Maker’s twin brother Airoquinn’s skull from the isle of Ganat-Pyr, and set it upon the throne, then the old curse that Darin Hardcastle laid upon the dragon will be nullified. Then Vitriolis will give up the Sunshard to the party. He swears this upon the blood of Io.
  • Having secured the word of Vitriolis Vyle, the party returns to Lor Pando. They inform Malcom Thunder of their deal. He offers them a seagoing vessel in the port city of Monrovia. The party takes a river barge down the Silverlode river with the aid of some water elementals which Lor Pando has a treaty with, at least for the next 34 years.
  • At Monrovia, they meet Captain Harmoza, a human, manning the caravel, Pisces.
  • They set sail for Ganat-Pyr. En route, they encounter a trio of yrthaks using their sonic lance attacks to tear the ship apart. In the ensuing struggle, Azule is too close to Taki as she casts a spell within a Null Zone and fumbles her spell. In so doing, Azule catches a spellblight and is the victim of random wild magic whenever she casts her musical spells.
  • Three days later they sight land: the shores of Ganat-Pyr. Vitiriolis Vyle warned them of a Thanatopic Titan who reigned here after the Iparians left. The party were on the alert.
  • The party lights a dinghy and rows ashore. They move through conifer forests and ancient ruins left over by the Iparians. They find a great city in ruins at the foot of the highest peak on the island. One of the party notices that the top of the mountain is shaped ominously like a gargantuan humanoid in armor sitting on his haunches. The Titan?
  • The party encounter some frost giants which they avoid.
  • They make their way to a mausoleum in the great city which has Airoquinn’s name on it in Ancient Sejannese.
  • Taki melds into the marble of the mausoleum and goes under the building into the tomb of Airoquinn. He takes his amulet and his skull and rises. This triggers the two stone golems to activate and they ponderously move toward Taki. Taki runs for the exit and the party shirks in horror to see the Titan has risen and is making his way down the mountain!
  • Azule and Kellan linger to witness the golems turning and tending to an urn and securing it. Apparently, it was more important to them than Airoquinn’s tomb…
  • The party splits and separates to confuse the Titan. One of the groups encounter the frost giants they avoided earlier. After a small altercation, the party avoids them again.
  • They make their way to the dinghy and push off for the Pisces.
  • The Titan wades after them from the shore and makes huge waves with his arms trying to capsize the intruders. But to no avail. The party just made it onboard the caravel and Capt. Harmoza put up full sail for Sejanna, avoiding the Titan.
  • The party make it to Monrovia without incident with the relics. Next destination: The Dragon.
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Session 14 - A Death Averted and a Haven Defiled

18th of Alborath to 4th of Exregulan
Year 333 of The Dark

Dramatis Personae
Needrik as Swatulu Taki, barbarian, ranger and earth mage
Setho as Malygos Onyxian, direct descendant of Skylurk Fei
Gary as Kellan Warfang, Baaaaar barian!
Glen as Azule von Trunt, dead or living… you decide!

  • Kellan catches up to Azule and Taki in Desiderata and decide to continue to Mt. Evercrest which is due north of Tyrus somewhere – I guess you can’t miss it.
  • They fight giant scorpions and dire lions and cave bears — oh my! (no cave bears, actually)
  • Eventually, thanks to all the time that Azule and Taki spent doing research on Vitriolis Vyle last session, Malygos Onyxian rides up to the party and demands an explanation for what happened to him in Sangria. What happened you ask?
    Well, let me tell you….

Exactly 28 days ago…

  • Malygos awakens in his armor during Brightening and is accosted by two silver dragon riders in the livery of New Iparia. They land and ask him a few questions regarding the Counterweight of Iparia. Malygos concedes that he did in fact take it and decides to make his case to the magistrate of Sangria.
  • Malygos is ‘escorted’ (this involves being hogtied, gagged, blindfolded and having all your gear taken) to the Magistrate of Sangria, a human called ‘Your Honor’.
  • Malygos makes his case to the magistrate but he will hear none of it. Malygos’ argument is this: “True, I took the Counterweight from you, but you have no idea of its legacy or its destiny. I have transformed this artifact into something that can save this world, you use it as a means to save one city. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.”
  • The magistrate’s counterargument: “How are we to know if you speak the truth if you are a known thief? How do we know if this Counterweight can do what you say it can do? This could be a clever ruse. Even though my priests detect no lie in you, I have learned that untruths can be spoken by those who are ignorant, deluded or insane. You have broken a treaty that we have held dear these two and a half centuries and your explanation is an admission of your guilt. You shall hang immediately until dead within the walls of this city to show the ultimate fate accrued to a thief and a traitor.”
  • Malygos ascends the scaffold, to hang with another malcontent. A crowd awaits below, a dozen guards, a couple of young silver dragons look on.
  • After the proclamation of death read by the priest of Io, Malygos casts a spell which causes some of the guards and citizens to rebel.
  • In the confusion, Malygos casts painful clouds of darkness into the guards and sends the priest falling off the scaffold.
  • He then mentally controls one of the silver dragons to rescue him and she does. The other silver dragon is incensed at this betrayal and chases after the dragon calling after her.
  • A cinematic air chase through the skies of Sangria ensues as the chasing dragon breathes jets of cold at the prisoner and Malygos firing back with searing darkness only to learn that the dragons are vulnerable to fire.
  • Past the city walls, the dragon holding Malygos drops him lightly on the sand. The priest of Skylurk immediately injures her with a slay living spell. The other dragon lands nearby and breathes paralyzing gas at Malygos.
  • Malygos’ luck holds as he shrugs off the gas. An epic battle begins between the dragons and Malygos. Just as Malygos slays the last young dragon. A formation of adult silver dragons and their experienced riders vault over the walls of Sangria to approach the convict.
  • Malygos, battered and bleeding, melds into the nearby rock formations and they lose him after an hour’s search.
  • In the darkening that follows, Malygos leaves the rocks and goes out in search of his former party…
  • En route, Malygos visits Jandria Astrakhal in Thraxx-Arkana and asks for some assistance since he lost all of his gear in Sangria. Jandria breaks out her stash and helps him out as best as she can.
  • Malygos is incensed at what happened to him and demands that Thraxx-Arkana go to war with them immediately in a conflagration of flame and dust!! But Jandria tries to calm him down. “We learned our lesson after the Desiderata War of Annihilation. We won’t go to war again unless our very nation’s survival is threatened.” Malygos retorts, “Well, what do you think The Dark is? A joke? All Sangria cares about is itself, they say fuck Crucibal. Well I say, fuck them. Did you know they made a treaty with Orcus? You believe that? Taking away their forcefield was what they deserved.” Jandria said she would try to get the Council to send some delegates to Sangria and ask for the Counterweight for the good of Crucibal, but if that fails, it will up to the Magisterium to decide."
  • Malygos rides on into the east…

And that’s what happened to Malygos.

  • Malygos makes it clear to the party that this betrayal has been noted and that he is finding it near impossible to journey with a party that despises him.
  • Taki brings it in point-blank: “I have always believed in justice, honor and the defense of the innocent. I have always had issues with your philosophy, you know that, I’ve made no secret of it. I had nothing to do with what happened to you in New Iparia, but I must admit that your attitude needs to change concerning your beliefs out here in the open. I don’t know what to do to be quite honest. Every time I adventure with you in that armor, seeing the spells you cast, I feel like I’m trading in my soul.”
  • Kellan and Azule reiterated their moral issue with leaving a city defenseless.
  • Malygos repeated his argument made to the magistrate of Sangria and added this: “Has it ever occurred to you folks that we need ALL the gods released to banish The Dark Firmament?”
  • The rest of the party objected saying that this was news to them. Kellan asked, “How do you know this to be true?” Malygos responded, “Skylurk himself told me.”
  • Then Taki and the others made the case that Skylurk is an evil god and has a vested interest in being released before the others. What’s to say that he’s lying in an effort to get released sooner.
  • Malygos waved off the naysayers, “Look, I have to do what I have to do to save my deity. If I have to do it without you. I will.”
  • On that somber note, the party remained silent and continued on to Mount Evercrest.
  • After fighting off a gang of hill giants armed with boulders in the foothills, they make it to a dwarven settlement in the Northern Mountains called Kor-Khamath. There they resupply and learn that it’s not a fun place. The place is constantly pinging to the sound of hammers and the forge. Apparently, they trade weapons with the Tyrus Empire and with Evercrest. They have seen Kzinti on chromatic dragons over their town. They have also seen them on occasion in merchant airships. After Azule nearly starts an incident with one of the dwarves, Taki and the others quickly move on through the valleys and canyons of the Northern Mountains toward Evercrest.
  • En route, they notice a despoiled caravan of weaponry and a formation of manticores overhead looking for human meat. Luckily, no one in the party is human.
  • A few days later, the party encounters a treant guarding the road to Mt. Evercrest. He informs the party that a small army of demons just raided the place a fortnight ago. The treant escorts them to the city limits and then returns to the surrounding woods.
  • Within the marble and gold city of the Sanctuary of Evercrest, they meet Theodoric, the warmaster of the haven. He explains the situation, “We were attacked a fortnight ago by a vampire and his whore companion. They led a small army of demons through a mystic gate that opened right there near the fountain. (He points at it). It disappeared only two nights ago. I had our paladins stand vigil near that gate for almost two weeks. Nothing else came through and no one was foolish enough to enter it. One of my men remembers an acolyte spilling the blood of one of our priests on that very site just before the gate opened up. They must have sent in a spy to complete the necessary lynchpins for their ritual. In any case, we were not prepared. We lost many. Luckily, our high priest, Linnaeus, is still with us, healing the wounded and curing the diseases they brought with them. We had to slay some of our dead since they emerged as vampire spawn. Damn, this was a terrible business. A terrible business!”
  • Theodoric then escorts the party to meet Linnaeus at the Apollonian Acropolis. He is a simple human in white and gold robes. He wears an amulet and a pair of gold bracers. “Greetings, pilgrims. As you can see we are unable to help with your requests at this time. We are still trying to repair the damage left by the evil spawn of Orcus who swept through here last fortnight. I think it is time for us to ask you for help. Can you help us to heal our sick and wounded? Or perhaps help to reconstruct the fallen homes and buildings of our haven?”
  • The party is eager to help (though Linnaeus loses his cool when he sees Malygos on an undead steed. Malygos repairs to the outer edge of the city) and they learn that the demon army is moving toward the lair of Vitriolis Vyle. They also learn that Apollo is here! In the grotto above the Acropolis… sleeping. They also find out that they have a teleportation disk but it doesn’t work anymore, not since The Dark. A Sunshard may be able to power it temporarily, however.
  • The party gets to work helping out the haven, but while doing so they try to come up with a plan of what to do next…
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Session 13 - A Quest Deferred

1st of Averni to 18th of Alborath (Autumn)
Year 333 of The Dark

Dramatis Personae:
Needrik as Taki, female Aw’Zinti wizard huntress of Earth magic
Glen as Azule von Trunt, female Dhampir bardess
Gary as Kellan Warfang, male half-orc barbarian of the Gruul
Dave as Manus Firebeard, male dwarf axe-grinder and armorsmith

  • Taki makes some decent magic items in the town of Stoneridge (one month)
  • Manus works for the local armorsmith for some cash (one month)
  • Azule and Kellan finally make it in to Stoneridge (one month)
  • With the party assembled, they decide to take on Vitriolis Vyle north of Lor Pando.
  • They journey
  • And journey…
  • And journey…
  • They fight a rampage of forest drakes chasing some wood elves.
  • A couple of shambling mounds guarding a bridge.
  • Fun and experience was had by all.
  • They lose Kellan and Manus in the Metropolis of Iv (that’s easy to do, btw)
  • Taki and Azule spend days looking through ancient tomes and manuals in Hamadi and the Great Library of Iv trying to find a weakness for Vitriolis Vyle.
  • They discover information on a curse that keeps the dragon trapped in the Norderwoods, but they decide at the last minute to head for Mount Evercrest and discuss the quest with the Hierarchy of Apollo.
  • They journey
  • And journey…
  • And journey…
  • All I have to say is fist-sized ticks
  • I should further say – gargantuan tarantula. The kind that pump you full of venom such that Taki and Azule can’t even make it back to town (well, Azule did, anyway).
  • Taki was rescued by a scout band of Aw’Zinti heading back to The Vale.
  • They make it past the town of Desiderata, encountering a racist orc and his bandit buddies (including a hill giant). Taki hurls a fireball, and they run like dogs!

The End

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Session 12 - A Curse Ended and a Weapon Mended

8th of Drydust to 20th of Infernus (Summer)
Year 333 of The Dark

Dramatis Personae
Setho as Malygos Onyxian, male half-elf priest of Skylurk Fei’s legacy
Glen as Azule Von Trunt, female dhampir bard of the Council Remnant
Gary as Kellan Warfang, male half-orc barbarian of the Gruul Mountains

  • Malygos Onyxian stays in Stoneridge for two weeks to meditate on a new spell from Skylurk Fei.
  • Azule and Kellan drink, party and explore the town.
  • On the 18th of Drydust, the party heads north to Lor Pando to secure another Sunshard.
  • On the 19th, they enter the small city of Per-Saltire, Crossroads of the Ivrian Kingdom.
  • There, they meet Alanna, a radiant elf oracle. Malygos pays her for a divination. He wants to know where the other half of Hell’s Hammer is located, i.e. the Counterweight of Iparia.
  • Alanna uses her crystal ball and informs him that what he seeks is in Sangria, the City of Blood, in the Kingdom of New Iparia. There, it is in the possession of one who believes himself to be of the True Blood of the Iparian race.
  • They change course and head east toward New Iparia.
  • They encounter and slay a rampage of five river drakes near the Sejanna River (20th Drydust)
  • They meet a legion archon named Pax and a group of peasants fighting off a gang of 12 bandits and their highwayman leader. They dispatch the rogues and Kellan is given a potion of Cure Serious Wounds for their trouble.
  • They encounter a pair of hill giants stealing a herd of twenty oxen into the highlands. They are both killed. The oxen stampede into the distance. (1st Infernus)
  • That night, a pack of six werewolves move in for the kill. The party wakes up in time and sends them all to perdition.
  • They journey through the small town of Pachomius – an academic town. (2nd Infernus)
  • On the night of the 4th of Infernus, the horrid, bloodied form of Solphi returns as a Vulnudaemon. She is covered in writhing, venomous snakes. She has come to bestow a Curse upon Malygos for letting her die in the clutches of Rastiel the Fallen. The snakes slither loose and transform into ten Cacodaemons who attack the party. Solphi is blurred and invisible and sneak attacks Azule. Malygos air walks twenty feet above while a Ceustodaemon dimension doors in and breathes flame at Malygos. Eventually, the daemons are all slain just before Solphi can utter her doomed Curse at Malygos Onyxian.
  • They meet a patrol of a pair of silver dragons and their riders. They bear the livery of New Iparia, and they warn the party that they have entered their domain. After the party declares their business and purpose, and emphasizing that it was they who brought the Twin Powers back to their temples, the riders agree to escort them to Sangria. (5th Infernus)
  • They enter the small city of Sangria on the 7th of Infernus. They hang out at The Hollow Haystack Inn to quench their thirst. They talk to the barkeep and feel out their surroundings.
  • Malygos and company relocate to the Ruby Circlet Inn since it is closer to Council Hall. He casts Spiritual Weapon and Locate Object to try to get the relative position of the Counterweight. They find that it is, in fact, in Council Hall.
  • Azule goes into the merchant district and finds someone who knows The Fence of Sangria. He scribbles down a cross street and tells Azule to meet him there at the sixth hour.
  • Azule goes to the corner of East Street and Grunauer Alley and waits. A sinister, dark form walks toward her from the end of the alley. He wears a black cloak and two eyes of flame dart from within the shadowed cowl. He offers Azule a set of three badges of office that will give them access to the Council Chamber within the Hall. Azule can only afford one of them. For 5,000 gp, Azule buys the Office of Sanitation necklace and goes back to the Ruby Circlet.
  • In the stable near the Inn, Azule changes into his noble’s outfit and dons the necklace of office. Kellan and Malygos are to be his ‘bodyguards’, and that morning, they go into Council Hall.
  • Malygos has his Locate Object active and finds that the Counterweight is below the fountain inside the Antechamber.
  • They are admitted into the Chambers and wait in line to see the Bureaucrats. When they are finally up, Azule bluffs the functionary into giving him a Writ of Construction in the sewers a block away. They then leave quickly.
  • Later, they enter a manhole near the Council Hall and notice that all their sewers are lined with lead. They find a place to tear the lead lining away, revealing the stonework behind it.
    Malygos stone shapes it into a small passage and peers inside.
  • Inside is the Counterweight of Iparia spinning at 5,000rpm ten feet above the strange, black, dais underneath it. There are 1 inch diameter tubes of iron connecting the floor corners to within two inches of the spinning Counterweight. Zaps and shocks of electricity cause vapor to form which is then summarily sucked into the surrounding tubes and out of the chamber. There is a door to the south which is guarded by two Huge sized Earth Elementals who appear to be inert.
  • Kellan scouts ahead in the sewer and finds a pair of strange sigils carved into the lead sides of the pipe. No one can make out what they mean.
  • Azule feels the rush of wind suddenly and ascertains that a flood is imminent.
  • After Azule tries to dislodge the Counterweight with a daemon horn (thus activating the elementals), Malygos drops a weight over it with Mage Hand and sends the Counterweight zipping and ricocheting more than a dozen times inside the chamber. Daylight floods the chamber and a magic mouth intones “Alert. Alert. The Sangrian Forceshield is Down.”
  • Malygos tries to weave through the huge elementals to retrieve the artifact, but he discovers that the dais is a gigantic magnet and is nearly adhered to it. He grabs the side of the doorway and pulls himself back out.
  • Azule goes invisible and sneaks in and retrieves the Counterweight, but the Elementals have tremorsense and see her. They attack and MISS!!! Azule grabs it and runs out into the sewers.
  • Azule hands Malygos the Counterweight which Malygos IMMEDIATELY makes whole with a spell and the added power siphoned through to it via Skylurk Fei himself. Hell’s Hammer exists again.
  • The party chases her out into the streets of Sangria where guards are scrambling every which place and herding the citizenry to their homes. Magic Mouths throughout the city proclaim, “Remain calm. This is an emergency. Return to your domiciles. Walk, do not run. Obey the Guardians.”
  • Azule cancels her invisibility and moves past some guards to The Hollow Haystack Inn and waits there until Darkening.
  • It takes them three hours to find their way through the maze of alleyways and streets to the city walls. Malygos cloaks himself in Darkness and stone shapes a passage through the city wall to the outside.
  • Kellan and Azule run quickly through the passage and notice that a guard in a walkway in the wall has noticed the opening. The party blazes through to the outside anyway, ignoring the guard who has already left to report. Malygos seals back the passageway with his spell and they all run into the darkness for two miles until they rest in a copse of palm trees.
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Session 11 - A Treasure Lost and A Treasure Found pt. II

5th of Drydust to 7th of Drydust (Summer)
Year 333 of The Dark

Dramatis Personae
Needrik as Swatulu Taki, Aw’Zinti, barbarian earth-mage huntress
Setho as Malygos Onyxian, half-elven priest of Skylurk Fei’s legacy
Glen as Azule, female dhampir minstrel of the Vampire Council
Gary as Kellan Warfang, male half-orc barbarian of the Gruul

  • Having no ‘party mapper’, the party decides to retrace their steps to get their bearings in Eggmandoo’s lair.
  • Discovering another set of stairs going down, they decide to explore further.
  • Going below they find a band of Morlocks who leap on Kellan Warfang and try to overbear him.
  • Moving south, the party finds a gang of four violet fungi; Taki fireballs the hell out of them.
  • Azule moves a curtain at the end of one of the corridors and meets the gaze of a basilisk. She quickly averts her eyes while Taki casts a pit spell beneath it and the basilisk thrashes about in acid at the bottom until it perishes.
  • Azule later breathes in some hallucinogenic gas near a wooden door and starts attacking the floor thinking she is overcome by millions of spiders.
  • Malygos rejoins the party at this time.
  • The party finds bas-reliefs throughout the complex showing a history of the Morlocks.
  • They fight more Morlocks and Malygos triggers a pit trap, falling eighty feet.
  • A basidrond escapes his chamber and chases the party. Azule is overcome by its LSD gas and thinks she is three inches tall. The party eventually kills the plant creature.
  • They find another lead-sealed stone door and eventually knock it down. Inside is the underground lair of a purple worm. It tries to chase after the party. The party flees through a secret door behind a bas-relief. They end up in a stone giant warren.
  • The party slays three rock trolls and a stone giant chieftain, Borgon.
  • Azule plays her violin, soothing the two stone giant guards, while the party moves past them to the next chamber.
  • While conversing with another stone giant guard, he is attacked from behind by an unknown assailant. It turns out she is a vampire assassin. She goes invisible and flees north while the party tries to discover her. The stone giant falls to his poisoned wound, but is saved in the nick of time by his stone giant compatriot who makes him eat some ‘magic mushrooms’.
  • Other stone giants join the party against the vampire and hunt her down in their treasure room.
  • The female vampire is the companion of Desmond Koriah, a vampire inquisitor. A great melee ensues.
  • Azule kisses Desmond and warns him to leave before stealing his Bag of Holding which contains the stolen Sunshard of Eggmandoo.
  • In the end, both vampires escape via gaseous form. One giant died.
  • The party tricks the giants into thinking their chief was slain by the vampires and steals their treasure.
  • They leave the lair, evade the purple worm and go back to Stoneridge.
  • The local shrine of the Twin Powers give Taki a map of Sejanna with four areas with X’s. It was scribed by the Three Archangels and are the locations of the remaining sunshards of Apollo’s Crown.
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Session 10 - A Treasure Lost and A Treasure Found - Pt. I

2nd of Drydust to 5th of Drydust (Summer)
Year 333 of The Dark

Dramatis Personae:
Needrik as Taki, female Aw’Zinti Earthmage Huntress
Setho as Malygos Onyxian, half-elven priest of Skylurk Fei’s Legacy
Glen as Azul the female Dhampir bardic rapscallion
Gary as Kellan Warfang, half-orc barbarian of the Gruul Mountains

  • Party reunites with Azul and Kellan.
  • Eggmandoo’s cave has an anti-magic field.
  • Party finds pond of black oil.
  • Small opening leads to kobold lair, the loyalists of Eggmandoo.
  • Slay Kobolds!!!
  • Traps are tripped.
  • Party fights a destrakhan.
  • Find a demon and his gate. He is searching for a sunshard. Party is confused: Does he want the one they have or Eggmandoo’s. Demon is slain and Azul hurls his head through the gate before it closes.
  • Fight fire drakes and magma elementals!!!
  • After tripping a cone of cold trap, the party finds treasure, but no sunshard.
  • Going upstairs, they come across a Nessian Hellhound in magic chainmail barding.
  • The hellhound guards another treasure chamber – but again, no sunshard.
  • Malygos is nearly slain twice – both incidents by party fumbles! (One by Kellan as he swung at a teleporting foe and slammed into Malygos. Another when Taki overswung her Aw’Zinti weapon).
  • They decide to go below…
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