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The Fifth Passage
The party cautiously approached the village of Ellis, warned so by Tepra upon noting how there flew a deviated flag of Pelor's symbol upon a red field. Dividing the party to investigate further, Izetti, Tarquinius, and Quill advanced to the village center, learning that said village was currently barricaded and under assault from an unknown entity. Sending a pantomimed warning to Mersire, Tepra, and the goblinoid thief pair, the exterior four hurriedly sought shelter within the village, harried by the entity.

Within, the party discerned the village's assailant to be predatory perytons which appeared after they undertook the teachings of the militant Pelorian cult. The hypothesis for their enhanced aggression was the village's application of a curiously powerful herbicide, destroying the natural cover of foliage and exposing them as easy prey. Determining the general direction the perytons were ranging from, the party set off to dispose of the creatures.

Along the way, found victims of the perytons were seen to deny the natural influences of rot that beings of the cycle would be subject to. Purification by fire seemed to resolve the issue. Likewise, the villagers were found to have been exceptionally prolific with their herbicides, decimating an unnecessarily wide swathe of the forest. This, however, was found to be and issue for another time.

Uncovering the perytons' abode, the party found a flock in hibernation with two more still active. Upon dispatching the pair, the party fell into a discussion over how to eradicate the remainder, when on the horizon they spied a concernedly portly man approaching astride a worryingly exhausted pegasus. He introduced himself as Ilitca.

Ilitica then proceeded to exposit at length - from there and for most of the way back to the village of Ellis - in exchange for inquiring as to the party's role in recent events concerning the cult of Mephistopheles in Prinlac. From this the party learned of the enforcers from the Church of Three (specifically this pair of Ilitica and Naz), some formal information on the perytons, the name and whereabouts of the Pelorian cult's local leader, and the casual - if rapidly silenced - acknowledgement of Quill as a warforged.

More important than all of this, however, is that this is the day that Mersire learned she's furry.
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Chisisek's Pyramid
Desnus 2 Our assault on the pyramid began with 4 cultists shooting at us from across the gorge with their crossbows. Between our fly potions and other magic, we were able to defeat them fairly rapidly. As soon as we finished fighting them, the lamia matriarch began to fight from her tent. She had very strong melee skills, but we were able to overcome her by main force.

We searched her tent once the fire was put out (Ostog's fireball that drove her out of it) and found food and cooking supplies. This is about when we saw the seps, a very venomous snake-like creature, crawling across the floor of the gorge. We were able to run it down with multiple ranged weapons and magic missile spells.

Outside the pyramid, we found many carvings in the walls of the gorge behind the pyramid. Tetisurah said that they were carved over 2500 years by the guardian sphinxes, Tetisurah and her mother, covering the history of Chisisek and his guardians.

Inside, Ostog scouted by Arcane Eye, finding one chamber emptied and two with closed doors.

Desnus 3 Amestri led us into the pyramid-tomb, confident that any traps in the first hallway would have been set off or disarmed already by Jamira and her cultists. Instead, we were hit from behind by a rolling boulder! That took quite a while to get around with a stone shape spell. Tetisurah was unable to get under the boulder, since it was a tight squeeze even for humans.

The second chamber contained grave goods and many, many, scrolls. These turned out to be architectural plans, the fruit of Chisisek's lifetime, except there was nothing from Hakotep's reign.

The third chamber had Chisisek's cartouche on it, and it was his tomb. The sarcophagus, lying under a statue of Ptah the creator or architect patron. The sarcophagus was empty, and the statue was a golem that we had to defeat. Amestri had a good time reading the walls of hieroglyphs, which covered Chisisek's life, but --again-- nothing from his years of working with Shori technology on behalf of Hakotep. She also suspected from experience that Chisisek's greatest treasures lay elsewhere.

Finding the secret door to the treasure chamber wasn't hard, and it led to a short hallway to double doors. Those were defended by a clockwork golem, perhaps built by Chisisek himself? We left it alone, to restore spells and health.

Desnus 4 With prepared spells, it wasn't hard to defeat this golem. Amestri rushed in as soon as the cloud of gears and debris cleared. This was his architectural library, and also held some magical devices.

Reading in the library, Amestri and Jes learned:
- Chisisek's greatest achievement was the flying pyramid of Hakotep.
- It was probably constructed in an area that also held a great earthwork, built with bound elementals to fight the Shori. Many slaves died in constructing this weapon.

We suspected that we needed to go north, to find the remaining cultists and their camp, and a divination with Pharasma confirmed that our quest led in that direction.

Through all of this, we were unable to find any larvae from the bee-folk that we'd met weeks ago, even though it was the cultist who had taken them.

Amestri plans to take a few days to digest more of the historical riches found here, before we head out. Ostog will take some of that time to finish learning some new spells.
Session: Game Session 23 - Saturday, Jun 29 2019 from 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM
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Under the bath-house
[Day 40] In the evening, Jes noticed a trio of persons trying to watch our table unobtrusively. When they noticed our noticing, they quickly left the Inn's restaurant, ignoring Hadia's calls to halt. Jes followed them down two streets, whereupon they turned on her. She led them back to the rest of the party, but the tail team disappeared, perhaps down some alleys. We did not pursue further.

[Day 41] Some of us carefully asked about town, seeing if anyone knew what the height of the (now-fallen) Tower of Ra's Glory had been. Sallah found 3 old men who had played on it as boys, they all agreed that it had been 125 feet high. Meanwhile, someone else found the Solar Observatory, and they let us know where the sun's rising would have been on Midsummer.

Using that data, we returned to the main hall of the library. With a little distraction of the library staff, Amestri had the undisturbed time to locate the potential location of the Vault of Hidden Wisdom.

Meanwhile, overheard among the stacks, was that a ranking Nethysite priestess in Sothis, Sarafet, had found something interesting under Azghaad's Spire-- perhaps the Heart?-- and now She Had Disappeared.

We go to the spot, which is on a side street, and is a wall of a bath-house. Amestri detects that it has a secret door, but we don't enter it. First, a bath for everyone! Novid received special attention from the staff, and cleaned up pretty nice. No one found any secret entrances inside the building, though.

Checking after dark when street traffic was decreased, the secret door turned into a tunnel descending a short ladder. Novid first found an ornate chest across the first chamber. There was a trapped floor under it, and he fell it. Amestri caught him with a Feather Fall.

Beyond that, the first reading room had a clockwork servant inside. Before we found a key to wind it up, two clockwork guardians arrived and attacked! Sallah died! Novid was knocked out and Jes had to carry the fight for a while.

We returned to Wati with the body, but not before Amestri discovered:
- the remainder of Khmenti's journal was here! He told that Hakotep's ib and ka were trapped, and the 3rd part of his soul put into the pyramid. Rejoining the 3 parts of his soul could push him into the afterlife. OR, it might bring him back to life.

[Days 42-43] We rest in Wati, Sallah was raised, but he remained in Pharasma's hospital to recover from dying.

Returning after dark to the Vault of Hidden Wisdom, we wound up the clockwork servant, and it led us to a triangular reading room. Here, we were attacked by a pair of eight-armed glowing balls of crystal! These aeon were named as theletos, and they were a very difficult fight before we sent them out of the world.

This room was full of architectural drawings of many Pharaoh's tombs!
- Hakotep's flying tomb was NOT on display here.
- It was mentioned that it could fly, but as soon as his body was interred, the whole tomb disappeared from view.

We search the rest of the Vault, and find a large dome-shaped chamber. Among the many books here, the clockwork librarian retreived the following for us:
- Chisisek was the architect for Hakotep, and he was killed to preserve the tomb's secrets. His funeral was recorded, though his corpse was laid in its own secret tomb.

Having already detected that this dome had a false ceiling, we put Novid to work on breaking into the hidden chamber. The crashing-down of the ceiling brought two large mummified (bashki) lynxes. Novid took a lot of scratches from their paws, Jes evaded and stabbed to finish off the mummies.

- Up on a fresco around the ceiling, we found Chisisek's personal cartouche (an owl in a house), and that his tomb lies "across two bridges, where the sphinx condisers the Crook, the Asp, and the Sun" which seems to mean the Parched Dunes, a moderate journey to southern Osirion.
Amestri also considered that the layout of the Vault itself:
- refers to the shape of the Shori weapons that the the Sky Pharaoh built to blast other flying cities.

We carefully recorded the location of this library, apparently lost to the Nethysites. Perhaps someday we shall tell them about it.

Our next plan is to rest in Wati in order for Sallah, Ostog, and Amestri to completely recover from their deaths. (to Day 61) We might also undertake magical crafting or research and prepare equipment and animals for the journey.
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Jack
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Heroes of Cambria
Episode 11: Treasure Dragon
Moving through the large cavern, the party navigates past the mounds of treasure, taking care to not take any coin from the piles. Running into some Kobolds and Yuan-ti, the party finds some powerful magical items. Encountering a platform with a clockwork lever, the Party rides the moving stone across a 500ft abyss... with their cursed treasure waking a treasure-clad dragon. After an EPIC battle with the Dragon, the party defeats the flying lizard, claiming much of his treasure. Venturing deeper into the Dungeon, the party encounters the God of Moon and Seas, Swae Lee. Finishing his trials, the party gains many Boons. Advancing further through the cavern, our heroes destroy the demon corrupting the area. The God Swae-Lee then offer to teleport the players anywhere they want on the map.
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Jack
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Heroes of Cambria
Episode 8: War!
Our heroes ventured down to Cambrian, where they discovered that the forces of Dracon had besieged the city. Rushing to the aid of King Cain, our heroes fought off the majority of the attacking army. Taking a quest from King Cain and Sir Alex (Head Console of the Free city of Aelton), our Heroes teleported to ElfHeim, where they discovered that Prince Magnus, long thought to have been in Dracon, was really hiding in the City of ElfHeim!
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Tags: Level Up , Recap , Summary
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