Through the Prophet's Eye

November 25th, 2009 Session
The Death of a Paladin.

Evening on the 24th day of Barrakas.

When the session opened the party stepped through the last door of their tests to confront Paladin Genero. The door opened into a large natural cavern, with an altar on a raised platform in the center. Several tunnels lead out of the chamber, all set into the far walls.

As the characters entered the chamber, they saw Genero standing on a raised platform. Before him was an altar of stone. Plunged into that altar was The Keystone. Surrounding the platform were four snake-like demons. As the characters entered the room, Genero declared that his “Master” had commanded him to kill them. With that, the demons attacked by spitting forth a liquid that seemed to corrode flesh and steel.

During the battle with Genero, Armigero was able to stand blade to blade with his enemy. Genero’s well known battle prowess was aided by a strange suit of armor that he was wearing. The armor seemed to be composed of an inky blackness, and at the end of Genero’s arms, the armor slid off onto the Greatsword that he was wielding. When Genero’s blade swept, his strength was combined with that of the armor, and their combined blow was devastating. The Armor also seemed to leave some of its demonic essence behind, when it struck, as each blow brought a poisoning effect with it. To make things worse, each blow struck against Genero was shared with the armor itself.

The party struggled against this dual natured foe, and his speed and power allowed him to drive Armigero back several times so he could get in amongst the casters in the party. Gaius was able to teleport away from Genero’s strikes a couple of times, but Corvus was forced to take several strikes from Genero’s poisoned blade.

The team’s prospects became very dark, when Genero’s armor dragged one of his wounded allies next to the paladin, so he could use a demonic ritual to increase the potency of the poison already in a few of the party member’s bodies.

The team pressed on though. Thorn, mounted on Chomper was able to move freely about the battlefield, and used his mobility to harry and kill the snake-demons. Corvus, and Armigero focused on Genero; leaving Gaius free to help their or Thorn’s efforts as needed.

The turning point that started to bring the party victory was when they attacked Genero’s Demonic Armor rather than the paladin himself. Eventually surrounding and focusing their attacks, they were able to shatter his armor. In that weakened state, the party was able to hammer in blow after blow upon the paladin, eventually killing him.

Armigero took a moment to savor his revenge, while the rest of the party searched the room. Corvus was the one to discover the bad news. Checking the altar, Corvus was able to decipher the runes upon it, and from them he determined that the Keystone had already been activated. In fact, Corvus determined that the tests the team performed were the events that unlocked the altar, allowing the Keystone to be used in the first place. The Nine Seals had already been revealed, and were now open to being broken.

As the party considered their next course of action, a purple fog drifted out of the altar, and coalesced onto the broken paladin’s body. The body animated, and eventually hovered above the ground surrounded by the necrotic fog.

The puppeted corpse spoke with an unnatural voice, and told the party that they had not only enabled the use of the Keystone, but that, in killing Genero, they had already broken the first of those seals. The creature then launched itself at the party, and attacked them.

The animated paladin proved to be a tough opponent, as the party was fairly weakened by the tests earlier in the day, and their conflict with Genero. The creature was surrounded by a mist that weakened the party’s ability to resist its necrotic influences, and it employed this weakening to great effect. Everything about this creature seemed to echo the grave. At one point it even caught several of the party members grouped together, and blasted them with cloud that reeked of rotting corpses.

The party did their best though, and eventually surrounded the beast, and tried to keep from bunching up. The creature countered with massive blows from its cloudy arms, which brought with them the chilling feeling of death itself.

The beast was eventually able to knock Thorn unconscious, but the constant blows of radiant might that Armigero was able to bring to bear on the creature rang in to massive effect. Gathering their combined fury the party was able to eventually defeat their enemy.

The party gathered together, and left the chamber through the same door they had entered, but this time it led straight out of the temple. Once outside, the team found the Dark Elf villagers waiting for them. The elder asked them if The Keystone had been activated, and if the first Seal had been broken. When the party revealed that they had, the Dark Elf seemed relieved. Gaius and Armigero were quickly roused to anger at the elder’s reaction to the terrible news, but the Elf assured them that these things were a sign of their eventual victory, not their defeat. The elder revealed, that the breaking of the seals, and the death of The Silver Flame were inevitable, the only question was whether or not the party would be able to defeat the Adversary. Apparently the events of the day were seen as omens that the party was on the right path.

As the session closed the team was contemplating their next actions. The Dark Elves promised to escort them to Stormreach, so they could travel back to Khorvaire, but beyond that the party was not sure what their next step should be. Regardless of their possible choices, Ja’Co’Bari plotted their downfall, and the return of his demonic god.

Late Evening on the 24th day of Barrakas.

View
October 28th, 2009 Session
The tests of Khyber’s Temple, continued.

Midday on the 24th day of Barrakas.

Special Note: Yay! Jason was able to attend this session, so to cover what happened with Chomper: Jay wanted to do the Gryphon Master class, so… back during the morning, the chrysalis cracked open revealing a large winged version of Chomper. Thorn was able to use him as a mount, so while he looks like a giant winged Chomper, he’ll act in game as a Gryphon Mount.

Now the story continues.

As the session opened the party was standing before three doors, each for the remaining party members who hadn’t completed a test yet. One showed a large flame, one a single eye above two cogs, and one had animal tracks leading to a spear. Gaius suggested that they attempt Corvus’s test next, and the party agreed.

When they passed through the door, they found a large room, that’s only features were in it’s four corners, and a fountain set in the middle of the right-hand wall. Each corner of the room had a discolored floor tile, that the team had come to understand as starting points. Three of the four corners also contained a unique set of objects.

Starting with the corner on their left, and proceeding clockwise: The first had an old faded fresco on the wall, the second had a stone table built into the wall, with three boxes on it, the third had a stone face set into a wall with two jugs, and the fourth was empty of all features except for the discolored tile.

Corvus started with the corner containing the face and two jugs. When Corvus stepped onto the tile, a field of energy sprang up cutting him off from the rest of the party, but leaving him with a path between the tile and the fountain. The face animated, and said, “I am thirsty. I would like some water from that fountain; however I can only drink so much. I require one unit of water. A few sips too much, and I will choke and become angry, and then I will punish your friends. A few sips too little, and I will not be satisfied, and I will punish your friends. I am also impatient, so your friends will suffer for as long as I thirst.”

Corvus did not want to make a mistake, so he sat and thought about the puzzle before him for a bit. Outside of the puzzle area, his friends were overcome with a wave of heat and thirst, that caused them to be greatly fatigued, as if they had been without water for several days. Corvus finally thought he had the solution, so he rushed over to the fountain with the 3 unit jug, and filled it. He returned to the face, and poured the three units of water into the 5 unit jug. He then rushed back to the fountain, and refilled the 3 unit jug. Outside his friends continued to suffer, and began to weaken from the pain. Finally Corvus returned with the filled 3 unit jug, and poured it into the 5 unit jug, filling the jug, and leaving only a single unit in the 3 unit jug. He then poured the jug’s contents into the open mouth of the stone statue, ending the challenge.

The rest of the party was a little angry with the nature of Corvus’s challenge, but seeing no other alternative, Corvus went to the tile with the three boxes.

Corvus again stepped onto the tile, and was walled off from his friends. A voice spoke to him saying, “Before you are three boxes; one contains red balls, one contains green balls, and one contains both red and green balls. They are labeled incorrectly. If you ask I will show you only one ball from one of the boxes. Each time I do, your friends will be punished. When you are ready you may remove all of the labels, and then place them back in the order of your choice. If you are wrong, your friends will be punished.”

Again Corvus took his time trying to puzzle out the nature of this challenge. He asked to see one of the balls, from a box, but felt no closer to the solution, and eventually asked for another ball from a different box. On both occasions his friends felt as though a portion of their own innards were ripped from them, and then shoved back in. The pain was massive, and they began to question whether or not they would be bale to withstand Corvus’s test. Corvus though felt like he might have things right, and changed the labels on the boxes; he managed to get the labels right, and the challenge was ended.

By this time, Gaius had had enough of the tests, and decided to try and squeeze into the challenge tile before the fresco with Corvus. Once they were both in, the painting cleared up, and looked as good as new. They looked, as the image animated, and they saw two small dwarven children on a swing together, they were both sporting the beginnings of beards, and were almost impossible to distinguish from each other, except that one had red hair, and the other had black hair. While they stared at them, the child with black hair said, “I’m a boy.” The child with red hair said, “I’m a girl.” Then a voice spoke and said, “These are the children Gromril would have had. One of them is a boy and the other is a girl. One of them is a liar. What color is the boy’s hair? Answer incorrectly, and your friends will be punished.”

Gaius was convinced he knew this puzzle, because he believed he had heard it before. He then asked one of the dwarven children, “If I asked your sibling what color the boy had what would he say?” The picture did not respond, and as they wondered what to do next, Armigero, Gaius, and Thorn’s heads became a wash with a fiery burning, and for those with hair, some of it fell out. Corvus thought for a bit longer, and finally decided that the boy’s hair was red. When he spoke this aloud, the challenge ended.

Corvus and Gaius approached the final corner with some trepidation, but as they entered, Gaius was yanked back to the middle of the room. Corvus stood on th tile, and noticed that his glass I was now missing as well. He spun around and saw Gaius, Uther, Thorn, and Armigero tossing his glass eye back and forth between them. His good eye itched, and he could not resist scratching at his eyelid. In the brief time that he was blinded, he heard a crash and shatter. When he opened his eye he saw the glass eye shattered on the ground between his four friends.

Gaius said, “It wasn’t me!” Uther said, “It was Armigero!” Thorn yelled, “No, it was Uther!” Armigero said, “Uther is lying.”

A voice told him, “Only one of your friends is actually telling you the truth. Who broke your eye? A wrong answer will punish your friends.”

Corvus tried to put all of the evidence together, but he initially guessed incorrectly by accusing Uther. His friends were pounded with the sensation of their right eye being stabbed as a result. Corvus realized his mistake, and came back with a guess of Gaius, which proved right.

After the end of the forth challenge, Corvus heard a voice in his head tell him that he must now face and defeat his own reflection, but that he would be given the chance to rest first. The party rested for a bit and regained their health, and when they were ready a massive statue of Corvus appeared amongst them. The party readied themselves for combat, and so did the statue.

Gaius struck first with a blast of lightning, and immediately a chunk of the statue fell off and became a stone copy of Gaius. The dopple-Gaius responded with a bold of lightning as well, and it struck the real Gaius with the same force that he had sent forth. Thorn charged the dopple-Gaius, and was rewarded with an attack from a dopple-Thorn mounted on a dopple-Chomper that broke free from the main statue. Armigero attacked the main statue, and another chunk fell of forming into a dopple-Armigero, that returned the blow. The now normal-sized statue of dopple-Corvus stood waiting, and Corvus struck out at it as well, only to be attacked back in kind.

Several rounds of action went by with the party trying to attack the different statues, each time they had their damage returned to themselves. Armigero even tried to attack the real Corvus, and when he did, he knocked poor Corvus unconscious. In the end the party realized that they could not fight themselves and hope to win, so Gaius surrendered to his own form, and as he did, it too surrendered to him, and disappeared. One by one the party members surrendered to their own forms, and were rewarded by their counterparts disappearing from the battlefield. When the dopple-Corvus disappeared the challenge was over. The party wondered what the nature of that final test truly meant, and the frustration was evident, but in the end a mask lock appeared in the center of the room, and Corvus placed his face into it to unlock it. It was interesting to the party to note that Corvus’s mask bore a blade where the right eye was at, but when Corvus removed his glass eye, he could lay his face into the mask without the blade reaching to deeply. This mask could only be unlocked by Corvus, unless someone else wanted to lose an eye for the cause.

Three doors appeared this time. The party had expected only two, but since they had now completed three tests, a new door appeared to test them with their final goal. The new door was solid black in color, and its surface looked like it was boiling.

The party decided that each of them must at least attempt their tests, so they opted to ignore the new door for now. They instead chose Armigero’s door.

Passing through the flame door the party found a large room that had an intricate maze-like pattern of grates set into the floor. Looking down into the grates the party saw that the maze was set to a depth of ten feet into the ground, and was filled with water. One part of the grate, in the middle of the room, was discolored like the tiles in the previous rooms. Following the teams normal pattern, Armigero stepped onto the discolored grate. The grate disappeared, and Armigero fell into the water below. Corvus ran up to check on him, and both he and Corvus could see that the grate was back in place now. Upon close examination, it looked to be a solid part of the other grating, like it could never be removed in the first place.

Armigero was trapped below. Luckily Warforged don’t breathe, so he trudged along the bottom, heading towards the front left corner of the maze. As he went the party followed from above, and kept an eye out for any trouble. Eventually Armigero made it to a slightly more open space in the maze, and there he found a hole in the floor of the watery maze. Looking at the hole, he found that it was a depression in the shape of his holy symbol. Armigero removed his holy symbol, and placed it into the hole. When he did, the tile around the hole became loose, and he turned it. There was an audible click, and the holy symbol popped back out.

After that though, all hell broke loose. Three wraiths slid out of the walls, and surrounded the party above. The creatures proved to be quite a challenge for the team. Each blow from the wraiths would weaken the party cutting them off from some of their more potent healing magics. With the party already weakened by their previous tests, this battle might prove to be too much for them.

Meanwhile below, Armigero moved through the maze trying to find another lock. As he did, he saw a disturbance in the water move towards him. This would prove to be another form of wraith as well, but this one was composed of the water itself as well. The creature attacked Armigero, producing a field of deepest cold, and entropy. Armigero responded by calling on the Silver Flame to bless his weapon, and struck out at the creature with his holy might. The blow was massive, even through the resistance that moving through the water caused.

Armigero would exchange blows with this creature for a bit longer, but the thing could not withstand the force of Armigero’s faith powers. Up above the party was able to start eliminating their enemies, but the pain they suffered was only magnified, when they found that their slain foes simply rose again to fight on. The party’s resolve did not waiver, but their confidence briefly did. Eventually the team was able to steer their enemies into a central location, and bring them all down. After that they played Whack-a-Wraith, and kept the undead fiends busy while Armigero found and released the other three locks. After the last lock was turned, the three remaining wraiths disappeared, and a mask on a pillar rose from the ground, in the water, under the discolored grate. Armigero placed his face against the mask, and the grate above released, and Armigero rose out of the water.

Two doors appeared this time, Thorn’s and the black door. The party knew that they did not have enough energy to go on at this time, and settled into the test chamber to rest and grab some guarded sleep.

Refreshed by their rest the party went into the final testing room, wondering what kind of test would be in store for Thorn.

Thorn’s room proved to be quite large, but somewhat featureless. They saw five discolored tiles set into the floor in much the same way as the pips on the five side of a six-sided die. Other than that they saw that the feeling reached to a 20 foot height.

Thorn rode his Chomper-Gryphon forward, and had the mount step onto the middle tile. When he did, a mask descended from the ceiling, mounted onto a pillar. Thorn flew up to the mask, and laid his face against it, hearing a click, and causing the mask to ascend again.

The party decided that this must mean that their were four other masks to click through. By this point of the “Testing” process, they knew things would be getting difficult soon, so they readied themselves, and waited as Thorn rode his mount to the next trigger space. It too released a mask from above, but this time when he flew up to it, two massive green and warty humanoids appeared, bearing massive chains. One of them lashed out at Thorn, and wrapped the chain around him, preventing him from being able to reach the mask above. Joining the massive chain wielders, were three demons, wrapped in chains themselves.

The battle opened when the troll that had snagged Thorn yanked him off his mount, and slammed him to the floor in between the three chain demons. This sent the battle off to the races, as the party wrestled with their enemies. With the two trolls directing traffic, by ensnaring the party members with their chains, the demons ran wild, focusing their attacks on Thorn. They apparently did not want him to complete his test.

The party worked really well together this time though, and while the trolls seemed to be able to recover from the wounds set upon them, the demons did not enjoy the same advantage. The party would gang up on a demon at a time, and eliminate it. The trolls did their best to try and keep Thorn and Armigero tied to one place, but through the party’s use of magics, arcane and divine, they were able to shake loose from the trolls attacks, and kept from being sent flying like Thorn experienced earlier.

The battle was going well, and the team seemed to have things in hand, when the two trolls gave up on catching their enemies, and started whipping their massive chains around their bodies, mowing down the party, and the trolls’ allies as well. This turned things for a bit, but the party kept to their tried and true tactics, and hammered on a single troll till it went down. It rose a bit later, but by that time, Gaius was able to get close, and burn the troll down, guaranteeing it’s final death. With only one troll left to beat, the team surrounded and finished the creature. The troll put up a good fight, but in the end the party was too tough, and they finished it.

Thorn remounted, and unlocked his four remaining locks.

As the session closed the party was staring at their final door, and Armigero contemplated getting his final revenge on the man that had killed his mentor.

Evening on the 24th day of Barrakas.

View
October 21st, 2009 Session
The tests of Khyber’s Temple.

Morning on the 24th day of Barrakas.

Special Note: Jason was not able to attend this session due to an illness in his family, and therefore the events surrounding Thorn and Chomper’s chrysalis were not covered in this session. Hopefully Jason’s family will be well for our next session, and we can cover it all in a flashback format.

When the session opened the party had just awakened in the dark elf camp, ready to face the Khyber Temple. The elder of the village told them that he would take a group of warriors, and lead the party to the temple. The dark elves gave the team some food and water for when they would be in the temple itself, then the whole group set out for their journey.

When the party arrived at the temple the found a large stepped pyramid structure that appeared quite ancient in construction. The elder told them that at this point they had two options: they could enter through the Khyber entrance, or take the Path of the Nine. The elder further explained that the Khyber entrance was also called the Labyrinth, and that it was directly connected to the Khyber Underdark. The Path of the Nine was supposed to be an access to the temple that only The Nine could use.

The party chose to examine this Path of the Nine, and went to the east side of the temple, where it was located. When they arrived they found nine plain stone doors evenly spaced along that entire side of the temple. Of the nine doors, only seven of them were still intact, the other two appeared fractured and damaged. When the party got within a hundred feet of the doors, five of the seven intact doorways changed to show patterns that had been carved into their surface: One showed a large flame, one a single eye above two cogs, one covered in clouds and lightning, one had animal tracks leading to a spear, and the fifth had a pyramid with a sun and eye motif. The party recognized themselves in the symbols on the doorways: Armigero, Corvus, Gaius, Thorn, and Uther respectively.

As they got a little closer to the doors, a ghostly image of a human male appeared before them, and instructed them about the Path. He told them that the Path was a test to prove themselves before the coming battle with the Servant of the Adversary. The shade further instructed them that they would each need to face a test, but in each test their allies would be allowed to assist them. They would be allowed to quit a test at any point, but if they did, then any individual who’s test was failed would have to face the Servant with “the full weight of Khyber upon them.” It added in that in order to open the gateway to the servant, that they must pass at least three tests.

The party thought that meant that the entire team could enter one door at a time, and face its contents together. The party began to debate about who’s test should be tackled first, when Uther opened his door and stepped through. The rest of the party followed.

The door opened to a pane of pure light, stepping through the party saw a massive room; 85 ft. by 85 ft., with a 30 ft. ceiling rising above it. That ceiling was filled with large holes that followed a regular pattern. Set within the floor were many tiles, nine of which contained stone circles that appeared to be separate from the tile they were set within. The nine circle tiles were set in a three by three pattern perfectly squared with at least 25 ft. between each circle, like a nine that would appear on a die when displayed in pips. The middle pip on the bottom of this pattern was set right in front of the party, after they entered the room, and the tile it was set within was a distinctly different color than the rest. When the party had all entered the room, the door behind them vanished as if it had never been there.

Corvus and Uther examined the discolored tile for some time, but in the end, Uther chose to step on to it to see what would happen. The disc in the center of the tile was in fact the top of a long pole, and it rocketed upward propelling Uther up with it. The agile monk was able to maintain his balance, and as he looked about him, he found that the four corner discs had extended to be 20 ft. poles, the four poles directly between those corners, to include the pole that he was now standing upon, rose 10 ft. into the air, and lastly the pole in the center stayed flush with the floor. More terrifying was the rows of endless screw-like blades that descended 20 ft. from the holes in the ceiling. They did not extend over the poles themselves, nor over the space between each pole in a grid-like pattern. Dropping down from over the top of each corner pole was a 5 ft. pole with a mask fused into it.

The party surmised that Uther must need to reach the masks, and while he might be able to jump that distance, it would be very difficult. Uther dropped off of the pole he was standing on, and within a few moments, all of the poles and devices retreated back into the floor and ceiling. Corvus suggested that Uther stand on top of one of the corner poles, and then he would step onto the discolored pole, theoretically sending Uther up to reach the mask. Uther got ready, and then Corvus stood on the discolored pole. When they did this, all of the poles, and devices started to extend to their previous positions, however the Artificer was not quite as agile as his monk friend, and was instead thrown to the floor, causing the poles to start sliding downward. Uther capitalized on the upward motion though, and leapt up to the mask above him.

The mask did not come off, it was part of the pole in the ceiling. Everyone else shouted from below for him to place his face in the mask, and when he did, he felt the mask heat up for a few moments, and then he heard a click from above. After the click, that pole started to recede, and Uther was forced to drop to the floor below.

Since that went so well the party decided to try another corner pole, but this time Armigero was tasked to trigger the device; even with his great mass and size, it turned out that he was more agile than Corvus. The poles all rose into the air, and everyone maintained their balance this time.

As Corvus reached out to the mask, a huge entity manifested in the center of the room. The creature was a swirling mass of tentacles, that turned in on each other with such writhing intensity, that they seemed to be all tentacle with no actual body. The creature flung a wave of black energy out of the end of a tentacle, and it struck Uther, knocking him into the screws, and those drove him to the ground below.

Surprised the party started to move against this new enemy, and as they did three snakes made of stone dropped down from where the three remaining mask poles connected to the ceiling. One of the snakes was right next to Uther, and it attacked him, injecting poison into his body from its bite. The others joined the tentacle mass, and moved against the rest of the party.

The battle was quite frustrating for the party, the tentacle beast had a tendency to writhe and flail its tentacles about it, this made getting close it very difficult since it assured a person of at least being accidentally struck by the creatures burning tentacles. The snakes were no slouches either. There poisoning bites, and shifty movements made them cagey opponents.

At first the party ended up spreading their attacks to thinly, merely wounding all of the creatures, but killing none of them. The party ended up prevailing over these enemies, by finally singling out a single creature at a time, and bringing it down with combined attacks. Gaius was particularly impressive when he called up a wave of fire to deliver the death blows to both the tentacle creature and a snake with a single incantation.

Once all of the creatures were dead, the party continued the process of launching Uther up to the masks, and having him unlock each one. Once all four corner mask were unlocked, the central pole rose into the air, and Uther unlocked that one as well.

After all of the masks had returned into the ceiling, four doors appeared on the far wall of the room bearing the symbols of Armigero, Corvus, Gaius, and Thorn. The party chose to open Gaius’s door this time.

Gaius’s room was much smaller, but no less an enigma at first glance. The room was composed of large metal gratings, that covered the floor. The only unique feature to the flooring was the single stone tile that was the same color as the triggering tile in Uther’s room. The ceiling though seemed to be composed of a stormy sky, and the walls were carved with the images of storm clouds and lightning. Gaius walked to the center of the room, and stood on the discolored tile. When he did this, four metal statues appeared; one against each wall, centered to that wall. The sky/ceiling changed too, and the clouds seemed to gather over each of the statues. Each statue was identical, and they all looked like Gaius, posed like he was expecting something.

The party was quite perplexed about what they should do next, so Armigero tried hitting one with his hammer, but this barely even dented the solid metal statue. Gaius tried stepping off and back on again, this caused the statues to wink out, and the clouds to spread out again, and then when he got back on, the statues reappeared, and the clouds gathered once more.

The party told Gaius to shoot lightning at one of the statues, so he fired off a blast of electricity, at the far statue. This caused lightning to arc and spark across the statue, and one quarter of the floor area. The blast was intense, and seemed to be lingering over time. The really interesting part was that after Gaius’s blast four whirlwinds appeared, and they too had lightning playing across their funnel like forms. Two of the creatures attacked Gaius with bolts of lightning, while the other two lashed out at the party with bursts of lightning, that propelled them away, and knocked them to the floor.

Gaius responded by firing lightning of his own, but that only seemed to strengthen the creatures. Uther and Armigero engaged the two that attacked the party, and Corvus conjured forth a rain of magical shards to rain down on the two attackers.

The party’s attacks seemed decently effective, and they even seemed to have one of the attackers on the ropes, but then Gaius moved off of the tile to attempt to assist Corvus in the fight. When he did the statues disappeared, and the whirlwinds went with them.

The party rested for a bit, and got their breath back, and once they did Gaius jumped back onto the tile, causing the statues to reappear. He fired lightning at one of the statues, and the whirlwinds appeared again, fresh and ready for the fight.

This time Gaius would stay in place, and tried using bolts of Chaos energy instead of his usual lightning. The rest of the party engaged the creatures, and while they were able to damage and eventually kill the creatures one by one, the creatures inflicted grievous harm on them as well.

What truly perplexed the team, was the fact that the the room never changed. Gaius noticed that the lightning would play out over the statue and floor that he struck over quite a period of time, before eventually fading. This time he lashed out at a statue, and when he did only two whirlwinds appeared. The party engaged the beasts, and as quickly as he could Gaius fired on each of the statues. Unfortunately Corvus happened to be standing on one of the grate sections when Gaius unleashed his lightning on the statue attached to it, frying poor Corvus like a baked crow. Corvus weathered the blow, but was peeved at his shocking friend.

When Corvus fired on the last statue, the remaining whirlwinds were greatly damaged by the blow, and looked severely weakened. The party continued their fight against the creatures, while the lightning settled over each statue. As each statue’s charge wore off, a click was heard. The party finished the last of the whirlwinds off, and watched as each grate section and statue settled and clicked. When the last one did, a column rose from the floor in the tile where Gaius stood, and it had a mask upon it. Gaius placed his face in the mask, and three doors appeared on the far wall.

As the session closed the party was considering who’s door to tackle next.

Midday on the 24th day of Barrakas.

View
October 14th, 2009 Session
That’s a Lot of Bugs!

Afternoon on the 23rd day of Barrakas.

When the session opened the party was surrounded by the Necroficer Scarabs. The Scarabs were spilling out of the corners where they had apparently been lying in wait for the party to arrive. The creatures quickly moved to cover the two sets of doors that comprised the only exits from the room.

Gaius opened the battle with a couple of blasts of arcane power into one of the corners of the room where a pile of Scarabs was still built up. The spread of arcane energy seemed to have a strong effect on the creatures, but did not completely deter them. The creatures advanced from all sides shrinking the clear space that the party was standing on, and at one point several thousand of the creatures moved as a single unit, and formed a 25 foot long sword blade, that immediately fell over onto Gaius, Thorn, and Chomper. Gaius teleported away, but Thorn and Chomper took a hit from the massive blade as it fell. When the blade struck the ground though, it immediately fell apart into it’s constituent Scarabs, and they scrambled back into the greater mass.

After the Sword, and the Scarab swarms movement, Corvus noticed that there was far too much coordination from the constructs for the creatures to be acting as individuals, and that their must be some kind of centralized brain controlling their actions.

Thorn acted next, and moved towards the edge of the swarm to lash out with his Zulaat; as he moved, Chomper followed behind. The swarm reacted to their movements, by jumping out at them, and attempting to burrow into their flesh. Thorn slapped as many of them away from Chomper as he went; this would become a recurring theme for Thorn, as he used his pet to draw the Scarabs into his range.

Corvus attacked the swarm as well, and dropped his Punishing Eye construct onto the ground near him, so it could add its firepower into the party’s.

Armigero stepped forward, and summoned forth the magical power contained in his Mordenkrad to blast a whole section of the swarm at once. The blow destroyed a whole swath of them, and stunned many of them.

Gaius blasted away at the swarm again, hoping to create some havoc in the swarm. The swarm skittered forward some more, reducing the clear space down to just a few square feet, leaving the majority of the party standing in the swarm. The swarm responded to Gaius’s attacks by forming the Sword again, and dropping it on the party. It appeared that it had a few other tricks as well. A pack of Scarabs formed into a large pile, and slid out underneath the party, and formed into a bed of spikes that sprang up off the ground, impaling several of the party member’s legs. The swarm also formed a pair of arms and grabbed Gaius’s legs, holding him in place.

This time though the party was ready, and they were watching as the swarm committed each action. Thorn and Corvus were able to point out two masses of Scarabs that had formed hard ball-like structures. They were in two of the corners of the room, and one appeared to be responsible for the Sword, and the other for the Spikes.

The party immediately concentrated their attacks on the two control nodes. Thorn threw a series of blows at the Sword node, smashing it to pieces. Armigero, and Corvus teamed up on the Spike node, and shattered it as well. Gaius again took some general shots at the boiling mass of Scarabs, but since his feet were still held in place, and he was now standing in the swarm, the creatures rushed up his legs, and began to burrow into his flesh.

The party began to feel confident with the two nodes down, until the mass responded by partially reforming those nodes. It also formed a new pair of arms, and grabbed Corvus. The dread of seeing the nodes reform was mitigated slightly, when Corvus and Thorn spotted the node that was doing the healing, and the node responsible for the grabbing arms as well.

Each of the four corners of the room held a node responsible for the major actions of the node, and the party decided to concentrate their attacks on the healing node. The combined onslaught was more than enough to smash the healing node to pieces, and the party destroyed the Sword node again for good measure.

With the understanding of how the swarm worked, it was only a few moments later before the party destroyed the remaining two nodes, and the swarm lost its ability to coordinate its actions. From that point of the battle forward, it was just a matter of smashing the disoriented swarm.

Before the last few Scarabs were scrabbling into holes in the edges of the room, and under the doors. The team looked around the room, and the moment at least three of them were looking at either set of doors, they opened. The doors leading back to the elevator opened revealing a tired Uther who apparently had run from his last meditation session to rejoin the team.

The doors that previously concealed Mr Jacobs, and his ally the Paladin Genero, opened to reveal a small room. The party entered and discovered a stone pedestal with a pair of stone rests that obviously held some kind of large object, but were now empty. In either corner of the room the party could see what looked like a bolt of lightning caught halfway between the floor and the ceiling, like vertical rips in the air.

Corvus studied the bolts for a few moments, and recognized them as the arcane debris from a pair of very powerful teleportation effects. The are under the library must have been warded against teleportation, and as a result, the effects that ripped through the wards were now leaving a lingering portal to both of their locations. A few moment of concentrated viewing showed the briefest glimpses of the locations on the other side of the portals. One showed glimpses of a room in some building, and the other showed a view of a jungle.

The party recalled having seen carvings earlier that showed the party in a jungle setting. Corvus reached deeply into his memory, and recalled the scene with such clarity, that he remembered seeing the Paladin Genero in a clearing surrounded by the members of the party, with Genero holding some kind of large staff. Deciding to embrace their destiny the party leapt through the portal leading to the jungle, and found themselves atop a massive giant-built pyramid surrounded by an endless sea of jungle. Breaking up the monotony of the jungle’s green were the tops of ruined stone buildings of similar design to that which they stood upon. Corvus recognized the area from one of his archaeological digs, and told the party that they were in Xen’drik; a whole continent away from where they just were.

The party scanned around the horizon, but Mr Jacobs and Genero were nowhere to be found. Thorn thought to go to the bottom of the pyramid, and start looking for tracks, but as the party made their way down, they realized they were being watched. Multiple creatures were watching them from the jungles trees, and as they looked the jungle became still and silent. Armigero started moving towards the pyramid base, and as he did the party crept slowly from behind as well.

Once Armigero set foot on the earth below, a Dark Elf stepped out of the jungle. It spoke first. Speaking in Giant, which only Corvus understood, the dark elf asked if the party was The Coterie. Corvus and the Dark Elf first assured that the two factions would not be attacking each other, and then Corvus explained that he did not know who this Coterie was. The Dark Elf then said that the Coterie are those who will directly oppose The Adversary. Corvus and the party had heard The Librarian refer to Mr Jacobs as The Adversary before, and asked the Dark Elf if Jacobs had come by this area. The Dark Elf told them that he did not, but The Adversaries Minion had. The Dark Elf then described Paladin Genero. The team asked to be taken to Genero, but the Dark Elf explained that Genero had a significant lead, and would make it to the temple before them. He also told them that Genero would find allies in the temple when he got there, and the party appeared to be physically exhausted by their ordeal so far. The Elf then offered to take the party to see the wiseman of his village.

Several hours later, the party found themselves in the Dark Elf village. It was built into the remains of a Xen’drik Empire slave quarters. The dark elves fed the party, and while they finished eating an old dark elf told them what they understood of the legends surrounding the team.

According to the wise man the party were known as The Coterie in the legends. The Coterie were those members of The Nine, that would specifically oppose The Adversary. At this point in the stories the forces of The Adversary were trying to take an object known as The Keystone into the Khyber Temple nearby, and with it they would be able to unlock a Ley Line of power that would then extend back to Khorvaire, and reveal The Nine Seals. With the Seals revealed, then the Nine Eyes of Fate would unlock the Seals, and the Silver Flame would be killed. Armigero did not react well to stories of his god being killed, and was visibly disturbed by the discussion. The only thing the party had going for them was the timeline for these events. Genero apparently could not open the Ley Line as soon as he got there, instead he would have to wait until an appointed moment before he could crack the lock. The party had two days to stop Genero, and recover the Keystone, or the Nine Seals would be revealed. At the wiseman’s urging the party rested, and took the opportunity to prepare, for a Temple to Khyber would be a demon filled hell hole, and could not lightly be entered.

As the party discussed their further plans, they asked the wiseman if he could check them for Scarab Sickness, as it turned out, all of the party members that fought the swarm were infected, and with Corvus’s help the wiseman cleansed the party of their infection. The wiseman also told them that they were avatars of Fate, and as such they could tap that power to render themselves immune to the Scarab Sickness. The wiseman performed a ritual on each of them that involved ritual scarification connecting to the Mark of Fate that each of them bore upon their chests. After the ritual Corvus sat down to make some arcane items of power to further strengthen the party. Each of the others took rest, and prepared for the coming battle.

As the session closed Thorn noticed that Chomper had encased himself in a massive chrysalis, and feared what new form his friend would bear when he hatched.

Night on the 23rd day of Barrakas.

View
October 7th, 2009 Session
If you only knew what I could see with your Eye.

Midday on the 22nd day of Barrakas.

As the Session opens the party is still in the streets headed for the House of Welcome. Corvus had spotted someone from the House of Sivis, and followed him with the party in tow. The run through the streets was fairly quick, but the party caught glimpses of people following them.

When the party arrived at the House of Welcome, they saw a couple of gnomes standing before the doorway. One of the gnomes gestured in front of the door, and a field of energy covered the threshold. The other gnome stepped forward and asked several pointed questions about the party’s latest activities. Gaius kept on referring to the gnome as Burble, but the whole party just played it off as Gaius’s usual eccentricities. While it seemed that the gnomes knew the party to be evasive about their activities, they did not press the issue too much. After a fairly quick series of questions, mostly about the people that attacked the party, the gnomes delivered a warning that they did not like troublemakers in their city, and dropped the field so the party could get inside to safety.

Once inside the party was able to secure some rooms, and Corvus was able to get some medical attention from a House Jorasco Medic. The Jorasco Medic offered to attempt to regenerate Corvus’s eye, but Corvus opted to just have the hole patched up for now. The Medic cleaned up the area, and offered him a selection of glass orbs to put in the socket so he wouldn’t end up being too scary looking. Corvus opted for a black orb with red swirls.

After the doctor’s visit, the party met with Corvus’s contact The Voice of Sivis. The Voice informed the party about the current status of Breland’s war with Thrane. It seems that Breland capitalized on the accusation’s that the party had assassinated The King, and that Armigero is a Paladin of the Silver Flame, as a pretense for war. The Voice also informed them that some of Thrane’s most loyal troops had mysteriously turned on their nation, and defected. The affected units were all near the border with Breland, and this caused the party to suspect that the Scarab Sickness may have had something to do with it. The Voice also told them that House Sivis would make a master librarian available to them to help them research their role in the Draconic Prophecy.

After The Voice left Armigero and Thorn asked the House Ghallanda servants if they could get messages out through them. The woman from the front desk assured them of House Ghallanda’s discretion, and told them about House Sivis Message Paper. Thorn and Armigero bought some paper and sent their messages. Armigero’s message went to the head of the local Church of The Silver Flame, warning them about the Scarab Sickness, and its possible role in the recent desertions. Thorn’s message went to his tribe, and was intended to also warn them of the impending disease.

The next day a gnome from House Sivis showed up and performed an illusion, that he called a veil, over the party so they would be invisible. He then escorted them through the streets to the Library of Korranberg. The trip was quite interesting as House Sivis had coordinated a series of carts to move through the various parts of the city, allowing the party to slip in between them so they could pass invisibly through the city without anyone bumping into them.

Once they arrived at the Library they were escorted through the massive complex (It occupies over half of the city) to one of the oldest sections; an area built by the Goblin Empire. Once they were settled in, the party met with the Master Librarian and several of his assistants. They briefing about the Draconic Prophecy regarding The Nine was fairly informative, Gaius slept through most of it, and it revealed to them that The Nine are considered to be Gatekeeper’s of key events that will take place throughout the coming times. It also states that the Eyes of Fate (The Nine) would unlock Doorways to Power. It also referenced that there were specific numbers that are significant throughout the prophecy those being one, three, and nine. Where these numbers relate to The Nine is that a number of the Eyes of Fate must be present to open certain gateways. Ones are common, threes are rare, and that there is one gate that must be opened when all nine eyes gaze upon it at once.

One of the Librarian’s assistants revealed that there were several of The Nine’s Gateways buried in the forbidden sections of the Library. The party immediately asked for access to that section, and sent away one of the assistants to get the Master Librarian.

While the party was waiting for the Librarian to arrive Corvus was hit with a wave of pain in his eye socket, and a sensation of double vision. When he closed his good eye he saw before him an image of Mr Jacobs looking at his eye that was taken, and then placing it in one of his empty eye sockets reserved for the eyes of The Nine. Mr Jacobs then looked about the room he was in, and spoke to the Eye Taker, and a few robed men in the room with him. Mr Jacobs then opened a door to what looked like a balcony. Once the window was opened Corvus could see a view of Korranberg before him.

Shocked by the sight, Corvus warned everyone that Mr Jacobs was in the city. The party sent another messenger for The Master Librarian to warn him that Jacobs was in the city, and they needed access to the forbidden areas as soon as possible. Corvus was then thrown into another series of images that showed Mr Jacobs on the move through the city. As the images progressed, Corvus could see Jacobs getting closer and closer to their location, soon entering the Library itself. As Corvus watched he soon saw Jacobs moving down familiar corridors before eventually moving into an unfamiliar section of the library.

It took only a few moments for the party to realize that Jacobs was headed into the section of the Library that they were waiting to get into. Not wanting to wait any longer the party left to give chase after Mr Jacobs and his entourage.

As the party traveled Corvus was periodically wracked with images of Jacobs marching through corridors confronting and killing Sivis guards along the way. When the team finally made it into the first of the forbidden corridors, they happened upon a room containing two gnomes in Sivis colors, accompanied by three human knights in armor. The guards all seemed a little wobbly, but before the party could get to close one of the gnomes shouted for them to halt, and as he did the party noticed a small Scarab crawl out of his nostril and squeeze into the tear duct of one of his eyes. Corvus tried to calm him, but as he stepped forward the gnome shouted out, “They are going to burn the books!”, and the knights drew their weapons.

Gaius acted first by lashing out with a crackle of lightning followed up with a thunderous boom centered between the two gnomes. The gnomes responded by shouting directly into the minds of Armigero and Gaius, compelling them to move away. Corvus told the party that it would not look good for them to kill Sivis guards, and pulled everyone away from the fight.

Heading back into the more heavily occupied sections of the Library, the party again sent a messenger for the Master Librarian. As they waited for him to arrive, Corvus again saw visions of Mr Jacobs as he entered a large room in the deeper regions of the Library. The room’s walls were covered in carvings, and as Mr Jacobs glanced around at them Corvus could make out scenes of their lives, to include the fight on top of the Lightning Rail, and the escape of The Ill Wind from the keela. Mr Jacobs gaze finally fixed on a large pair of doors that had the Draconic Rune for the concept of Three scrawled across it. Mr Jacobs then placed all three of his stolen eyes in the foremost eye sockets, and as he stared at the doors they opened of their own accord.

The party was soon joined by the Master Librarian, and once he was made aware of the situation he gave them permission to accompany him below. The party with the Librarian and a group of well armed guards moved below, and when they got to the Guards below, The Librarian spoke words out of his mouth that formed into a wall of air and sound, he then used the wall as a tool to bend around the afflicted guards so his men could engage them. With those enemies held the Librarian told the party to run after Jacobs, and that they had leave to do whatever was necessary to any who sought to block their passage.

As it turned out the halls were empty of any life, instead filled with the dead and mutilated bodies of those Sivis defenders who tried to resit Jacobs advance. Eventually the party found the room with the carving that Corvus had seen in his vision. When they looked at the now closed Runic doors, Armigero, Gaius, and Thorn’s right eyes began to tingle, and the doors swung open. Beyond the doors was a short hallway leading to a dead end room that was a massive circular domed chamber. The party saw that the floor was not attached to the walls, and when the stepped on the room’s floor, the floor sank deep into the ground.

When it stopped, several minutes later, they saw two massive doors before them. As the doors swung open they were immediately set upon by a wave of heat and bright light. Once the doors had fully opened they saw three great warriors seemingly made of pure flame, with two of Mr Jacobs robed men standing behind them.

The party asked no questions, and Gaius leapt to the forefront of the battle running straight up to the warriors, and evoking an arcane blast of thunder from about his feet and into the fiery warriors, and then sailing over their heads, propelled by the force of the blast to land between them and the robed men, again unleashing a massive peal of thunder that knocked all of them aside. The fiery guards turned to attack him, but he quickly teleported back near the party, and made way for Armigero’s charge. Armigero plowed into one of the guards, delivering a mighty blow. Unfortunately for the party the following moments would not go as well as the opening did.

After Armigero’s charge two of the guards sliced him with blows from Greataxes made of pure flame that they seemed to conjure into their hands. The blows were massive, and Armigero was bathed in flame. The robed men decided to make sure that the rest of the party wouldn’t feel left out, so they sent two massive blast of flame amongst the party members still on the elevator. Corvus charged forward, and set out a small figurine that would assist him in his healing, and he immediately went to work on tending to Armigero’s wounds with one of his healing infusions. Thorn meanwhile ran close to the guards, and struck out with his Zulaat at the warrior that had been the focus of Armigero’s first attacks.

With the melee now set the party would engage in all out combat with the fiery warriors while the robed men would blast away with evocations of fire and flame. Gaius would try and get a bolt of lightning in amongst the enemies as often as possible, but the smoke and haze often confounded his shots.

The battle was mostly uphill as the party’s enemies seemed to have no end to the amount of fiery pain they could bring down on the heroes in the tight hallway. Finally one of the warriors fell, and as he did the battle tide turned. The party would beat these foes, but Corvus had to use every healing trick he knew to keep the party from being burned down by their enemies.

As the party surveyed their victory Armigero noticed a tattoo on the neck of one of the robed men: it was a warped version of the mark of The Silver Flame. It was a version meant not to honor the Silver Flame, but the Demonic godling that it held at bay. These men were followers of The Shadow in the Flame. Their mark was also underscored by a sword symbol that looked like the mark of soldiers from Paladin Genero’s unit.

Not wanting Mr Jacobs to get too far ahead the party ran down the hallway, and pushed into another large room, with minor carvings, and a Runic Door. This door had already been opened by Mr Jacobs, and he was standing just on the other side of it. Beside him stood the betrayer Genero. The party entered the carved room, but before they could reach the Runic door and their adversary, Jacobs shut the door. The door behind them slammed shut too, trapping the party.

As the session closes the party is watching in dread as hundreds of thousands of Mr Jacob’s Scarab constructs pour into the center of the room from the shadowy corners where they had silently waited.

Afternoon on the 23rd day of Barrakas.

View
September 30th, 2009 Session
And then he took my Eye!!!

Dawn on the 18th day of Barrakas.

The session opened with the party having just rescued Prince Oargev ir’Wynarn. The party made its way back to the Inn of Welcome in town, but after looking it over they instead decided to stay at a local warehouse that the Prince had cleared out so he and the party could rest.

After sleeping off the previous evenings battles the party met with Prince Oargev, and Lord Langrish. Prince Oargev and Lord Langrish offered to back the party in their actions against Mr Jacobs and The King. Prince Oargev also announced that he had chartered the services of The Ill Wind, and her Captain, Jenna d’Lyrander. The party expressed their gratitude for the ship’s services, but also told the Prince that they felt that they must first try to understand their role in The Draconic Prophecy. So it was decided that the party would fly to Korranberg, to seek the aid of House Sivis and the knowledge contained within the Library of Korranberg.

Before setting out Corvus was contacted by The Voice of Sivis, a person he had worked for in the past. Corvus did not reveal too much about the conversation, but he did say that The Voice would be arranging a distraction in Korranberg, when the party landed, so they would not draw the notice of The Trust.

Feeling confident the party started preparing for the flight when Thorn decided to investigate the bodies of the creatures that attacked them the night before. Armigero, Gaius, and Uther joined Thorn in his inspection of the bodies. After examining the bodies Uther was able to determine that the flesh of the creatures was killed very recently, and was then animated almost immediately. Gaius examined the construct aspects of the creatures, and was able to determine that the metal construct was not one construct, but hundreds of smaller scarab-like creatures. After learning these little tidbits, the party was able to determine that the scarabs were behaving in a more disease-like fashion, and were turning people into these creatures from the inside out.

Thorn was the first to realize the implications of this discovery, they all fought Rubel the night before, and he has used bursts of scarabs to attack them then, so they too might be infected. After this realization Corvus inspected everyone with his knowledge of healing. Corvus found that Gaius, Thorn, and Uther were all infected, and that he and Chomper showed signs of having been infected but that they had fought off the disease. With the application of Corvus’s ritual magic knowledge he was able to remove the diseases from all three of them, but at quite a bit of cost to the infected persons health. Gaius and Thorn were able to recover quickly, but Uther needed the rest of the day. Corvus looked over the crew of The Ill Wind, and found that some of them were infected as well. Rather than wait for her crew to heal up Captain d’Lyrander instead swapped out her infected personnel with non-infected personnel from another ship. Following all of this, the party informed Prince Oargev of their findings so he could take similar measures to clean up the population of New Cyre.

The party finished their preparations and left for Korranberg. During the flight that night the party was drawn into another Prophecy Dream. In this one the party were gathered in The King’s audience chamber with all of the members of The Nine, except for Gromril. Mr Jacobs and The King were there with the machine, and in short order Gromril was brought in. Without much preamble Gromril was fed to the machine, and The King was one life stronger while Mr Jacobs became one eye richer as well. Gaius took the opportunity to make some obscene gestures at Mr Jacobs, and was shocked when Jacobs returned the gesture behind The King’s back. In the closing moments of the dream Mr Jacobs picked up the bloodied remains of Gromril’s Gufu Bag, and whispered, “ Burble ”.

Following the dream Gaius called Burble on his Whisper Stone and warned him that Mr Jacobs was on to him. Burble told Gaius that he would have to leave Three Rail Junction, but that he would be in touch.

When the party got close to Korranberg Corvus called The Voice of Sivis, and let him know when they would be arriving. When the party made landfall, they started to head to a Ghallanda House of Welcome near the library, but they found that the town square surrounding the Sky Port was filled shoulder to shoulder with people. The party started to squeeze through the crowd, with Corvus, Gaius, and Thorn making good progress, while Armigero and Uther started to fall behind. About the time that the lead party members noticed the stragglers they were attacked by cloaked assailants. At first the attackers took quick swipes at each of them, using the crush of the crowd to attack and blend back in. The enemy was mostly successful, except for the ones that attacked Thorn and Chomper. Once the party moved to engage Thorn’s assailant the rest revealed themselves, and the party found themselves in a difficult melee.

Not wanting to harm the innocents in the crowd the party had to squeeze themselves into the small spaces left between the panicking crowd members. Unfortunately for the citizens and the party, the assailants did not seem to have the same concerns. Gaius fell back to where Armigero and Uther stood, so he could assist them, while Corvus, Chomper, and Thorn teamed up to eliminate their attackers. Unfortunately for Corvus this left the three of them outnumbered, and the enemy used that advantage to surround and attack him.

In the back of the battle things faired a bit better with Armigero’s powerful armor able to turn back his attacker’s blows. Uther lashed out with his monk’s fighting strikes, and abused his opponent. Gaius delivered a few bolts here and there, but the crush of the crowd caused a few of his strikes to go wide.

The conflict seemed fairly evenly matched, when another attacker appeared on top of a small building looking over the square. It was The Huntress. She stepped forward and flashed out a chilly blast of ice and wind that split between Corvus, Chomper and Thorn isolating Corvus with his previous attackers. The ice and wind then solidified into a wall that kept Thorn and Chomper from being able to get to Corvus. The Huntress then yelled out “Now!”, and a shadowy form sprang from the roof near Corvus, he delivered a quick blow with a dagger that completely paralyzed Corvus for a moment. With the opening of Corvus’s paralysis the attacker then produced a device in his other hand that he used to stab into Corvus’s eye socket, and yank out his eye.

The party was shocked for a moment but Gaius quickly used his own wind powers to throw The Huntress from the building top right to Armigero’s feet. Armigero reacted quickly dropping two mighty strikes onto The Huntress, staggering her.

Gaius was impressed by the fact that The Huntress was still standing after the attacks, and said, “That’s some impressive armor. Where did you get it?”

The Huntress responded, “It should be impressive. You made it for me, lover.”

The Huntress proved to be both powerful and shrewd though. She stepped away from the combat, and told Gaius, “I’ll see you again soon, my husband”, and showed him a marriage ring that she was wearing on her finger. She then teleported out of sight.

Once the Huntress left the Eye Taker followed suit and made ready to leave. Just before he teleported away though, Uther got a few good blows in on him. With the Eye Taker and The Huntress both gone, the remaining assailants quickly began to fall. A couple of them tried to surrender, but Corvus would not allow the insult of his lost eye to go unanswered, and quickly killed any of the enemies that tried to surrender. One of the attackers did run away into the streets, and the party gave up the pursuit so they could get to safety quickly.

As the session closed the party had finally made it into the House of Welcome, and were tending their wounds.

Midday on the 22nd day of Barrakas.

View
September 23rd, 2009 Session
Wow, he’s a lot bigger than before!

Just after Midnight on the 18th day of Barrakas.

As the session opened the party was headed out in front of the Inn, and preparing to do battle with Rubel. Rubel had grown into a very large monstrosity, and was covered in undead flesh, reinforced with steel structures inside. Rubel held Lord Gladwin aloft in one of his hands, and was stomping amongst the lifeless forms of many halfling defenders.

Gaius Stormcaller cut loose a bolt of lightning into the monster, while Uther rushed forward leaping the distance between himself and Rubel, to deliver a furious blow. Rubel knocked Uther aside and drove forward to where the rest of the party stood. Rubel’s attack would prove to be a disgusting event as his threw off an explosion of tiny metal scarabs; where the scarabs found flesh they burrowed. Corvus, Armigero, Uther and Gaius all had the pleasure of experiencing the scarabs’ stinging touch. When the creatures finally left their hosts they would drag the portions of the hosts with them. When the scarabs could not be brought down before getting to Rubel, they would add their ill gotten gains to the greater mass that was Rubel.

Thorn rushed towards Rubel, and quickly wrested Lord Gladwin away from his grasp. Thorn then sprinted away from the battle to drop off Gladwin in a safe location. Eventually Thorn returned to the battle, but he ordered his pet Chomper to stay away from the battle as the destructive activities of Rubel proved to be too much for the animal.

Besides his scarab trick, Rubel mostly tried to smash his massive fists into the party sending individuals sprawling away from him when he struck home. Rubel also utilized a mental attack that confused members of the party causing them to turn and attack one another. The party mounted a strong offense though, and with their combined might they eventually brought Rubel down.

After the battle, the party attempted to catch their breath when Lord Gladwin revealed to them that Prince Oargev’s “Palace” was under attack as well. Rushing to the scene the party found that the structure was on fire, and that Prince Oargev was supposed to be trapped still inside. Armigero attempted to bash the front doors in, but they didn’t fall until Thorn rushed in behind him to help.

Once inside the team moved through the smoke and haze until they were able to get to the Prince’s chambers. Once there the team found the prince surrounded by six of the Undead Construct Doppelgangers like the ones that attacked the Inn. As the party entered the room the Doppelgangers were finishing off the last of the Prince’s guards.

Uther rushed forward to the Prince’s defense, followed quickly by Thorn. Meanwhile the rest of the team isolated and proceeded to cut down the enemies. The battle proved to be difficult for the team mostly due to their battle weary state. The creatures were quick and aggressive, but the real threat was their tendency to go berserk once they were highly injured. Armigero suffered the worst of the creatures’ berserker rages at one point finally being knocked unconscious by the attacks. The Prince himself attempted to motivate the party members, and was able to use healing magic to help get the team through the battle. In the end the creatures were brought down by the superior tactics and skill of the team.

Prince Oargev was extremely thankful, and between him and the Breland Lords the party was well rewarded for their activities that evening. Oargev was interested in what the party’s next plans were, and offered to help them bank roll their continuing war against the conspiracy of Mr Jacobs.

Dawn on the 18th day of Barrakas.

View
September 9th, 2009 Session
We’ll be safe once we’re on the airship

Mid-Day on the 16th day of Barrakas.

After receiving the signal from Gaius the party left the alley and approached the remaining guards. The Starilaskur Watch Captain, backed by two soldiers and an archer told the team to halt. When they didn’t slow down he sent one of his soldiers forward to halt them. As the soldier approached the party noticed that four more guards were hidden on top of the buildings around them. When they thought they could get no closer with out the soldier attacking them, they made the first move.

Gromril, Thorn, Armigero and Corvus surrounded the guard, and began an abusive melee. Gaius threw forth a couple of arcing lightning bolts that killed all four guards on the roof tops. Things seemed well in hand until the Watch Captain started blowing a whistle to summon more guards.

The Captain and his two soldiers were not too difficult to handle, and in time the first soldier fell. The archer proved to be a bit more difficult to deal with as he seemed to be using some kind of blunted arrows to rattle the party members. As the battle continued new guards would run towards the battle, but many of them would quickly be cut down by Thorn as he tapped into the techniques that he had learned by observing snakes in the wild.

The party continued to push closer to the airship tower and the safety of House Lyrander’s territory. When an opening finally appeared Corvus shouted for Lord Langrish to make a run for it. Hot on the heels of the noble, Corvus followed and got the both of them onto the tower platform. Seeing the actions of their comrade the rest of the team started making a break for it as well. Soon only Gromril and Thorn were left in the melee with the guards, but unfortunately their were more coming, and some of these were archers. As Gromril tried to move past the remaining soldier, he was knocked unconscious by the blunted arrows of the archers. Thorn valiantly looked to drag him to safety, but seeing the disadvantage of numbers that he was suffering from, he was forced to abandon his friend to his fate.

On the platform the House Lyrander guards immediately halted the party members as they arrived and were told that House Lyrander did not want to be involved, and that once on the platform the party would not be allowed to interact with the battle below. Resigned to the fact that Gromril could not be helped right now, the party pressed forward with their mission, and delivered Lord Langrish to his ship.

Lord Langrish produced tickets for himself and the party members, and with ticket in hand the party boarded the Lyrander ship, The Ill Wind. Once aboard the vessel the team was introduced to two other members of Breland’s House of Lords; Lord Thomas Wright, and Lord John Gladwin. Lord Gladwin had the interesting ability to always be able to detect a lie when spoken to him, and under his gaze the party related all of the events of their dealings with The King, and Mr Jacobs. While they are speaking to the Lords the party noticed that another member of The Nine was on board. Uther introduced himself, and explained that he made it on board after escorting Lord Wright to this location.

The party eventually took rest while the ship was underway, but during the night Thorn noticed an immense shadow move quickly across the ground below them. Fearing something horrible coming Thorn looked ahead to see a stone tower on a hill sized ball of earth descend from the clouds before them. Thorn awoke the party, and rushed to the captain of The Ill Wind. The captain dismissed Thorn’s warning saying, “That is a Breland warship. They would never damage their standing with House Lyrander by violating our neutrality.” With the Captain unwilling to listen the party awoke Lord Langrish. When Lord Langrish saw the tower coming, he ran to the captain to tell her to turn away, but it was too late. As the ship began to turn the Tower fired to ballista bolts into the ship’s port side, and with chains attached, the ship was dragged towards the tower. The party began to scramble, and prepare for the coming assault when the tower dropped a draw bridge onto the side of the ship.

The first wave of troops rushed across as the bridge fell, but immediately after them Gaius called forth a whirlwind to blast the next group of soldiers. With Gaius’s whirlwind blasting soldiers off of the bridge, and plummeting to their death, the party engaged the few troops that had made it across. These initial soldiers were an easy task for them, and seeing that his friends had things well in hand, Thorn moved below deck to see if he could dislodge the Grappling Bolts. The tower archers let loose with a hail of arrows that struck party, and The Ill Wind’s Captain.

Below deck Thorn started hacking at the grappling hook that had pierced the hull. A few solid blasts knocked loose the first of the four prongs on the hook, but Thorn recognized that there would be quite a bit of work before the ship would be free.

On deck the team was mopping up the last of the first wave and the single soldier from the second wave, when soldiers riding griffons descended to the decks and charged Armigero and Corvus. The griffon riders’ assault and the constant volleys of arrows turned the tide against the party. While the team struggles against their enemies, they could hear a female voice calling out orders and shouting abuses at the tower troops. It was the elven mage that attacked them in the sewers earlier that day. Gaius continued to manipulate his Whirlwind eventually moving it against one of the griffon riders while Thorn and Armigero concentrated on the other one. Eventually they were able to kill one of the griffons and his rider. When they only had one team left Corvus called on his arcane power to banish the rider to a pocket dimension, while Armigero and Gaius brought down his mount.

As the last enemies were being killed on deck, Thorn broke the third prong off of the grappling hook, and watched it tear free of the hull. Thorn then moved into the next room to find that the crew had been busily working on their hook, but with significantly less success. With Thorn their to do the heavy lifting the last hook was broken loose, and the ship tore free from the tower’s hold.

As the session closed The Ill Wind sailed free from the tower as the enraged elven mage’s words echoed across the expanse, and with an audible pop the poor banished Breland soldier reappeared from the dimension that Corvus sent him to, and plummeted to his death.

Just after Midnight on the 17th day of Barrakas.

View
September 2nd, 2009 Session
To Starilaskur

Late Evening on the 8th day of Barrakas.

As the session opens the team is preparing to set out for Starilaskur, and The Inn of Happy Wenches. Gaius picked up the horses that he had arranged for, and the group got on the road. Thorn had some trouble sorting out the best path to take, but luckily Gromril was able to get him pointed in the right direction.

While on the road the party was overcome with fatigue, and was thrust into a state similar to that of The Prophecy Dream. This time they were not shown the distant future, but instead the current time in a distant place. This dream opened with eight members of The Nine present again in The King’s reception chamber. While they could all see each other, they didn’t seem to be able to hear one another. The chamber brightened, and they saw Mr Jacobs, King Boranel ir’Wynarn, and Prince Boranel ir’Wynarn II; also present was the construct from The Prophecy Dream. Mr Jacobs spoke to the King and told him that the Moons were properly aligned, and that they could begin.

The King ordered the guards to “Bring her in.” Upon his orders Aviel Sulamon, one of the members of The Nine, was brought into the Chamber. Aviel appeared beaten, bruised and incapacitated. She was dragged to the machine, and like in The Prophecy Dream, she was fed to the construct. The King then turned to his son, and told him that he was sorry, and ordered Mr Jacobs to begin the process. The construct seized The King and The Prince, and an energy transfer happened between the two of them.

At the same time each of the remaining members of The Nine felt a surge of power and pain pour into them. A burning feeling formed on their chests, and they felt some of the energy from the machine pour into them as well.

The King’s body fell limply to the ground, and The Prince moved away from the machine’s grasp with a sense of confidence and intelligence not previously seen in the dim-witted youth. The Prince, and now new King, stretched himself, and commented that at least the boy was in good shape. He then looked to Mr Jacobs and asked “Did everything happen as we planned? Am I whole once again?”

“As I told you, my King. The transference is not complete. With the other members of The Nine still alive some of her power will have gone to them as well.” spoke Mr Jacobs. After this the scene faded and each of the party members awoke still in the saddles of their mounts.

Each of them looked at their chests and noticed an Aberrant Dragonmark that appeared over the center of their chest. They could feel within them a new pulse of power. When Corvus looked at it he recognized it as the Draconic Rune for the concept of Fate. While this mark does make itself known in Prophecy, he could never remember it appearing directly; instead it appears in the patterns in which Dragonmarks manifest. None of the characters knew what this event will mean for them, but there is no mistaking the increase in power that they each felt.

Over the course of the next seven days the party made their way across the Brelish farmlands to arrive in Starilaskur. After taking some quick measures to disguise themselves; the party broke up into a few small groups and attempts to mingle with the crowd entering the city. Unfortunately Thorn and Corvus are not quite up to the task, and draw attention to themselves by angering a caravan that they are trying to slip into. Two guards from the front gate move to investigate, but before they can single Thorn and Corvus out, Gaius sweeps in and distracts the guards with questions of brothels and the beautiful women of Starilaskur that await a road weary traveler.

Once they were all within the city, the characters individually made their way to The Inn of Happy Wenches. Along the way they found that Wanted Posters are up within the city depicting each of the members of The Nine, and claiming that they are responsible for the assassination of The King. The bounty on their heads is set at 1,000 GP per person. Gaius was the first to enter the Inn. He attempted to make contact with Krinkle d’Ghallanda the owner of the Inn. Gaius enjoyed the spirit of welcome that fills the establishment, and after speaking to the woman at the front desk, he went into the bar and waited. A short while later a halfling appeared behind the bar, and introduced himself as Krinkle. Gaius and he moved into Krinkle’s office. After entering the room Gaius noticed that Krinkle had several Wanted Posters on a wall behind him, and one of them includes The Nine. Gaius asked for the protection of the party under the terms of Welcome that House Ghallanda is known for. Krinkle agreed, but explained that such welcome is not without costs, and that the standard rates of protection for wanted men is one forth the requested bounty per night. At the stiff rate of 250 GP per night, Gaius calculated that the team would be bankrupt in short order. Krinkle seemed to notice Gaius’s discomfort, and suggested to him that the rates are very different for friends of House Ghallanda. Gaius asked what must be done to earn the friendship of House Ghallanda, to which Krinkle replied that he has a job for Gaius and his friends. Krinkle then told him that he will charge the party 20 GP each for the night, and would discuss terms for earning the House’s friendship in the morning.

The next morning the party was brought back into Krinkle’s office, and offered the job of escorting a friend of House Ghallanda off of the premises and onto an Airship bound for New Cyre. Upon arrival in New Cyre the party is told that they can enjoy safe haven at the Ghallanda enclave there for free for two weeks. The party accepted Krinkle’s terms, and were then introduced to Lord Michael Langrish, a member of the Breland House of Lords, who is apparently also on the run from the King of Breland. Gaius talked Lord Langrish into changing into slightly less obvious clothing, and to leave his luggage behind. The party then used a secret exit from in the basement of the building that leads into the sewers.

The team hurried as quickly as they could through the sewers, concerned by a report from Krinkle that one of the last groups to leave The Inn of Happy Wenches this way encountered some “Trouble.” Things were going well with Thorn leading the way, until the party was ambushed by an elven woman, and her allies.

The first to appear was the woman, reaching around a corner to conjure forth a waterspout of elemental force in the middle of the sewage. Then two shadows slipped around a corner to appear amongst the party, and attack Corvus and Lord Langrish. Thorn attacked the woman first, but her powers over the wind battered and pushed him back towards the group, and the oncoming waterspout. The two shadows coalesced into dark elf warriors, and they carried blades made of shadow. The waterspout continued to draw party members towards it, dragging them away from the elven mage, while she pushed Thorn back into the melee every time he escaped. Corvus, Gromril, and Gaius concentrated on the two dark elves, while Thorn and Armigero engaged the whirlwind, leaving the mage alone to snipe at the party.

The team of Corvus, Gaius and Gromril did well at first. There attacks seemed to be weakening the shadowy rogues, while Gromril harried the elves forcing them to concentrate their blows on him. The only down side was the shadowy blades seemed to ignore Gromril’s armor, and the damage they did prevented his wounds from closing easily. All was going their way; Lord Langrish even had time to slip away from the melee, when one of the dark elves produced a zone of complete darkness around Gromril, his ally and himself so intense that Corvus and Gaius were blinded to what happened within.

Meanwhile Armigero and Thorn moved against the waterspout. Whatever the thing was, it seemed to almost ignore the attacks of Thorn, but when Armigero cut loose with a blow inspired with The Silver Flame’s holy might, the whirlwind howled in anguish. Blasting the creature to the edge of death, Armigero struggled to finally land a death blow on its willowy form, while Thorn continued his attacks from behind.

The other three heroes finally gained headway once the wall of darkness fell, but with in seconds of finally seeing their opponents again, Gromril fell to another shadowy slice. Gaius and Corvus redoubled their efforts on the more wounded of the two elves, and when they seemed to finally have him on the ropes, the elf turned into a shadow again, and ran through a wall of the sewer. Corvus quickly healed Gromril, bringing the dwarf back from the edge. The elven mage commanded the remaining dark elf to “Ignore the guards, they mean nothing. Kill Lord Langrish, he is all that matters!”

About that time Armigero finally landed the death blow on the waterspout, but in death the beast dealt one last blow to the party; it exploded in a blast of elemental power, and each of the party members was tossed about the sewers like twigs. The lone dark elf then turned and ran towards Langrish attacking in the confusion of the moment. Luckily a boost of arcane vitality that was placed on Langrish earlier in the battle by Corvus acted to ablate the attacks of the dark elf. The party righted themselves, and split to attack the mage and her dark companion.

The attacks against the dark elf were quick, and decisive. Seeing himself outnumbered, and already bleeding from multiple wounds, the remaining rogue also turned into shadow, and slipped through some cracks in the walls. With the last of her allies gone, the mage pronounced, “We shall meet again.”, and then she teleported away.

After taking a brief rest the party moved the rest of the way through the sewers, and exited close to the airship docks. Lord Langrish explained that they need only get onto the platform to be on House Lyrander territory, and from there they would be free from further attacks. Feeling confident about their prospects, the team rounded a corner on the street, when they saw an array of Breland Military guarding the roads to the docks.

Gaius thought a distraction would be best, so he started a small fire in an alley. Gaius then ran up to the captain of the guard team, and told them that he saw some strange people starting a fire. He also told them that he thought they might be the men they are looking for. Surprisingly the Guard Captain bought it, and he sent a few of his men away to check out the disturbance.

Waiting until the dispatched guards were well out of view, Gaius turned back to his team and gave them a go signal. As the session closed the team prepared to do battle with the remaining guards, and make a run for the airship docks.

Mid-Day on the 16th day of Barrakas.

View
August 26th, 2009 Session
The Great Train Ride

The Night bridging the 7th and 8th day of Barrakas.

The Session begins with the characters preparing for the Rail Guards to enter their car and attack them. At first only Thorn is holding the door, and is forced to give ground by a rushing Rail Guard, but in quick order the team formed a front line and dealt with the four warforged attackers.

With the human agent on the move the team quickly gives pursuit into the second car. The human rushed towards the car before his, only to find that a line of gawkers were blocking the door. The agent climbed a ladder next to the door to the top of the box car, and ran out of sight. Corvus was the first to make it to the ladder, but when he climbed up he found not only the human agent, but also seven warforged Rail Guards waiting for him. Corvus quickly dropped back down to the space between the car doors, and allowed a more “hearty” ally to lead the way. Thorn and his Pet took up that challenge, moving to engage the warforged. Unfortunately the warforged appeared to be ideal for fighting on top of the Lightning Rail. Not long after Thorn had finally gotten on top of the car, two Guards in the back used some sort of force weapons to push him of the back. Thorn was able to recover and grab the side, but this event would prove to be a theme for the upcoming battle.

As the group members were able to gain a place on the roof of the car, they proceeded again to form their defensive line against the Rail Guards, with the added nuisance of the two Snipers in the back taking potshots at them, and occasionally knocking people off the roof, or at least prone. Gaius was the first to try and deal with the annoying Snipers, by way of a thundering leap of arcane power. Unfortunately the warforged seemed to be anchored by their feet to the roof of the Lightning Rail. As the battle back at the defensive line continued the warforged Captain made his way to the front, and added his powerful attacks to attempt to knock members of the group from the top of the train. Corvus summoned one of his Punishing Eyes to add pain to each blow the allies landed on their enemies, and Armigero landed brutal hammer blows upon the Rail Guards before him. Gromril was able to start forcing his way amongst the enemies ranks, and with the force of his shield and hammer, he was able to start pushing the guards around too. As with Gaius’s attack earlier, it seemed that the guards were secured to the roof through their feet, but after a mighty blow from Gromril one of the guards foot anchors broke loose, and he seemed unable to secure himself again.

Gaius gave chase to the human agent, but when he finally got close to him, he found that the agent appeared to be waiting for something. From the Lightning Rail Engine came forth a wave of lightning, that rippled down the length of the train, as it came towards the agent, he performed an acrobatic leap that escaped the wave of electricity; the party was not as lucky. The wave rippled past the entire team causing burns and scorch marks in its wake, but the Rail Guards with working foot anchors appeared undamaged by the wave. Corvus, Thorn, and Armigero would all endure attempts to knock them off of the car, but none of them were ever thrown off; in fact at one point the Armigero even remembered his earlier investment in some spiked sole components that he had installed, thus preventing him from being pushed off at one point. Through the use of his shield and hammer Gromril was able to knock defending guards around, eventually pitching a couple of them off the side of the rail, while a bolt of lightning from Gaius was able to bring down one of the Snipers. As the numbers shifted to the party’s advantage, they were able to surround the Captain, so as to bring him down with repeated attacks. Thorn sent his squig after the remaining Sniper, and while the beast could not bring the enemy down, it at least was able to keep him busy, while the party was engaged with the Captain.

Gaius seeing that his friends had the battle well in hand took off after the agent again. The agent proved to be crafty and agile, but in the end he would be no match for Gaius’s arcane power. The chase eventually ended when the agent was not able to get into one of the forward cars, and had to double-back into a cargo car. There Gaius was able to fry him within an inch of his life, and force his surrender.

The rest of the team joined Gaius within the cargo car, and began to question the agent, Bob. Bob proved to be quite helpful, and gave forth the limited information that he had, including an understanding that the King had been assassinated, and that the group responsible matched the descriptions of the party members. At the party’s urging Bob disconnected the cars that the party had fought in or around, and made up a story for the remaining guards and engineers that the Rail had been attacked. The trailing cars would now act as a road block for any Lightning Rails chasing the party, and the loss of the weight allowed their train to speed up on its way to Three Rail Junction. The party had Bob consume a Sleeping solution so he would not be able to cause any further issues, and later the Engineers gave the party a reward for “helping repel the bandits.”

Upon their arrival in Three Rail the team got away from the train station as quickly as possible. The started searching through the town, and were eventually pointed to Burble’s House of Books, and the owner Burble. Corvus was entranced by a magic sign hung above the counter in Burble’s store, and was only released from it once Burble was assured that the party was not there to take his store from him on behalf of House Sivis. Once the party had the chance to meet him they found Burble to be a friendly enough character, and he seemed fairly forthcoming with information, especially after he was told of the Parties connection to The Prophet David.

During their conversation with Burble, he revealed that The Prophet David was in fact Da’Vidorak, a dragon that was an expert on the Draconic Prophecy. Burble explained that in his relationship with Da’Vidorak the dragon had spoken about The Nine on multiple occasions. It seems that the dragon was preoccupied with finding and saving them. As the party explained their predicament to Burble, he outlined key groups that may be able to help them in the future. Burble’s strongest form of assistance was the production of a Gufu Bag for each of them that would apparently help shield them from being tracked magically. The gnome did ask for something in return though, the one thing he apparently craved the most, knowledge. Burble gave them a small Whisper Stone that the party could use to communicate and trade information with the gnome.

The gnome had many suggestions, they included winning the favor or support of certain power groups: House Ghallanda, the house is well known to provide safe house protection to all guests within their Houses of Welcome; House Tharashk, this houses finders would end up being some of the primary people sent to collect them; House Medani, for the same reasons as House Tharashk; House Orien, because of their control of overland transport; House Lyrander, for their control of Airship and Seaship travel; and House Sivis, because of their influence within Zilargo and their knowledge of the Draconic Prophecy. Besides the Power Groups, Burble also suggested that there may be some locations the characters could consider running to: Sharn, anyone can get lost in that city; Thrane, due to their already well known dislike for Breland; Zilargo, its not one of the Five Nations, and while its allied with Breland, it is renown for its neutrality in most situations; Darguun, the goblin nation has almost no laws; and The Mournland, because only fools go in there anyway, so likely no one would chase them.

Armed with the knowledge that Burble gave them, the team went to a local inn that was licensed by House Ghallanda. At the inn Gaius made contact with the Innkeeper, and got the name Krinkle d’Ghallanda, a halfling that is a ranking member of the house, and the owner of The Inn of Happy Wenches, an official Ghallanda House of Welcome within the city of Starilaskur. Gaius was also able to get the Innkeeper to purchase some horses for the team.

As the session closes the team is preparing to set out for Starilaskur, and The Inn of Happy Wenches.

Late Evening on the 8th day of Barrakas.

View

I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.