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De Exilio
Chapter 5 — Durbuluk
The fiendish hobgoblin dropped back to the ground, his goo-covered, arrow-punctured wings barely preventing him from crashing. Landing on one knee and bent over in pain, he dismissed his spell. Then, he strangely began laughing.

"What is so funny?" demanded Leokas.

"I find it humorous that even his enemies do not know his actual name."

Szordrin continued to point his wand at their captive. "One more taunt and you will not be left to recall his true name. Now, tell us all that you know about him. Do not try to hide a thing." The tiefling made a motion with his other hand to imply that he was watching the hobgoblin closely.

"I want a guarantee that you will let me live to leave this cavern and return to the Marching Mountains, before I speak," replied Durbuluk.

Kytharrah had seen the others interrogate prisoners before, so he figured he'd try to imitate them. Tapping the bottom of his axe handle on the ground, he snorted, "Talk!"

"By Torm," swore Szordrin, choosing a god who supposedly cared a lot about oaths, "if you give us all the information that we seek, we shall allow you to go free... eventually. If we intended to kill you, we would have done it by now."

Belvin and Leokas stood by defensively, while Hakam and Solisar seemed to be studying the hobgoblin's body language.

After a short pause, Durbuluk finally answered. "His name is Allustairimarinastralmindivu. Most pure-blooded hobgoblins are too stupid to remember something with that many syllables. I do not have such a handicap."

Now that this was revealed to them, it was not too shocking to Hakam. He remembered learning a little known fact that the names Calim and Memnon were also shorted forms of those famous genies' true names.

"As for who he was," continued their prisoner, "I do not know much of anything about his past. He has never told me his true background, but I suspect that he was just someone at the right place at the right time."

Leokas suddenly seemed to recall something and interrupted the current topic with a new question. "Wait! You mentioned the Marching Mountains. Are goblins gathering in force under the Marching Mountains? Are they preparing for an attack?"

"I promised to tell you of the efreeti, not of the Marching Mountains. Nevertheless, I will tell you what you should already know: the goblins are too weak to ever war against the surface world without guidance. Good for nothing but arrow-fodder are they in combat. That is why they needed someone like Allustairimarinastralmindivu."

Hakam uttered a quick prayer, and instantly, everyone felt a strong compulsion to speak only the truth.

Durbuluk smirked. "Your god cannot overcome the power in my blood, human cleric. Save your magics; I intend to speak the truth on my own."

"In that case, I affirm that you will be allowed to return to your home, provided that you answer all of our questions truthfully," said Hakam. "First, you say that you do not know much of Allustairimarinastralmindivu's past." (Szordrin looked at Hakam with shock that he so easily pronounced the name.) "When and how did you come to learn of him? And why did you join him?"

"I was high priest of Nomog-Geaya and chief advisor to Guthash, King Under the Marching Mountains. About this time last year, messengers came to King Guthash through the goblin tunnels from Calimshan. These messengers claimed to have been slaves to owners in Calimshan yet were set free by followers of Allu, a new god of hobgoblins. Seeing as I serve the only true god of hobgoblins, naturally, my ears perked up at this news. They were evangelizing, recruiting for an army with which to retake Calimshan for the goblinoid races."

"Nomog-Geaya?" asked Leokas. "Who is he?"

"Nomog-Geaya is the General, the god of authority and war. He is the true patron of my people."

Leokas was under the impression that Maglubiyet was god of both goblins and hobgoblins, and this was what they had heard some of the other goblins and hobgoblins whom they had encountered say, but he did not sense deceit in Durbuluk's voice, so he let the matter pass.

Szordrin opened his mouth to say something, but then doubted that he would be able to lie with Hakam's spell in effect, so he thought better of it.

Durbuluk continued. "Even though I knew that this new god, 'Allu', must be an imposter, I was intrigued by the message. King Guthash had been planning for years to build an army to unleash on the overworld. Perhaps this Allu could be an ally of sorts. A genie is a powerful adversary or a powerful friend. I advised Guthash to send me as an ambassador, to observe Allu and his schemes.

"I have thus pretended to be a 'priest of Allu', but while he can grant us three wishes a day, which is not a minor thing by any means, he cannot grant spells. I still serve Nomog-Geaya, and Allustairimarinastralmindivu knows this. The other hobgoblins do not. That is all that matters.

"Nomog-Geaya knows that I am faithful to him. As I bide my time, so Nomog-Geaya bides his time for when he will rebel against Maglubiyet."

Belvin, with singed hair and leathers, asked, "I suppose that you attacked us thinking that we are enemies of Allu-stair-into-the-astral-sea-or-whatever. Could we not have come to a peaceful resolution, considering that we earlier freed your kin? Or does that not matter to a hobgoblin?"

"My goal was to flee this place. You were in my path. I know nothing of any kin of mine that you freed; I only saw my opportunity to escape, since the mummies below had been destroyed. You were not goblinoids nor efreet, so you would be no friends of the efreeti, even if you are enemies of his enemies. For all I know, you are simply greedy adventurers. Whoever you are, you made my task easier, and I took advantage of this, as anyone with any intelligence would."

Hakam jumped back in with a question. "Tell us more about these mummies. Was there another mummy with them, one called El Sadhara? She would have been dressed more ornately than the others that we destroyed."

"What her name was I do not know, but there was another, yes, without a veil like the others, extremely thinning hair, terrifying presence. She commanded the undead and elementals of air and slew many of the hobgoblins with a single word, turning them instantly to ash."

"Is she still here somewhere?" asked Leokas.

"She only left just recently."

"Why did she leave?" asked Solisar.

"Someone summoned her back." Durbuluk shrugged. "I do not know why. She left her handmaidens behind."

"What do you know of her designs?" asked Hakam, "Why was did she come here at all?"

"Allustairimarinastralmindivu, when scouting the desert, had learned of her ancient temple. He discovered that she was seeking to restore the djinni kingdom that once ruled here, one that warred against the efreeti kingdom to the north.

"Her designs were thus completely at odds with Allustairimarinastralmindivu's. He sabotaged her works. Allustairimarinastralmindivu did not expect her to find this hidden palace of his, and he trusted in the 'protection' of the blue dragon lairing 'next door'. But with the dragon gone, she must have seen an opening for her revenge.

"Her forces annihilated us. While I am drastically more powerful than the poor miserable pure-bloods, I am no match for the mummy,... nor was Allustairimarinastralmindivu."

"The dragon Yrevkethend is gone?" asked Hakam. "Where did she go?"

Durbuluk shrugged. "She was last seen flying to the northeast, and she has not returned."

"The hobgoblins whom we freed said that she had been absent since the beginning of the year," added Leokas.

Durbuluk nodded in agreement.

"And where are Allustairimarinastralmindivu and his archwizard now?" asked Hakam.

"When he saw that his plans here had failed, miserably, he fled to the Spinning Keep."

Hakam knew that he should be familiar with the term, but he could not place it.

Solisar sensed this and explained, "The Spinning Keep of Siri'wadjen is the great prison of the genies Calim and Memnon, created by the High Mage Pharos nearly 9,000 years ago."

"Why would he go to a prison?" asked Hakam.

Durbuluk chuckled. "Do you not know the legends of the Calimmemnon Crystal and the Spinning Keep?"

"Clearly I do not," Hakam replied.

"Within Siri'wadjen lies the Calimmemnon Crystal," said Solisar, "in which the entrapped essences of the two noble genies strive ever for freedom. Legends say that anyone touching the gem would obtain the powers of both Calim in Memnon. Other legends say that, if the Crystal were to come into contact with the wind of the desert or the crackle of its dried sands, then the corresponding genie would be freed. Of course, the elves protected the Crystal. No one has ever entered Siri'wadjen or successfully solved its puzzles. In fact, it is impossible even for anyone to pass through the magical field of protection surrounding it."

"Typical of snobbish, arrogant elves, your definition of 'anyone' differs from that of other races," said Durbuluk. "In truth, the protections on the Spinning Keep bar genies, humans, and elves from ever touching the surface of the magical structure, but nothing prevents a hobgoblin or a goblin, like Booyagh, from touching it." Durbuluk gave a truly devilish smile.

Hakam suddenly understood the gravity of Allu's plan and why he was so interested in hobgoblins as a race. "Curse you elves," he said. "Calishites would have protected the prison with better magics!"

"Oh, we shall just go back 9,000 years and fix that then!" said Belvin.

"History has already been written," said Solisar. "We must deal with the present."

"So, Allustairimarinastralmindivu desires the power of the Crystal and needs the hobgoblins to bypass the prison's defenses," said Hakam.

"No, Allustairimarinastralmindivu knows that the power gained from touching the Crystal is only temporary. He wants the permanent power that a fully restored Memnon can grant him. He does not want to simply touch the Crystal; he wants to free the Trapped Terrors within."

"Why would he want to free both genies?" asked Hakam.

"He only wants to free Memnon, of course, but it is likely impossible to free one without the other. His original plan was to have the backing of an army of efreet behind him when the Crystal was removed from the Keep. With the aid of a multitude of genies, surely Calim would immediately be subdued and slain, and Memnon would rule."

"Why release Memnon only to be subjugated by him?" asked Hakam.

"I have always suspected that Allustairimarinastralmindivu is no one of note on the Plane of Fire. He is not noble born. None of his efreeti kin would ever follow him. I think that he believes that if he succeeds at his elaborate plan to restore Memnon to power, then he will be rewarded handsomely or even appointed to higher status among his kind."

"It seems foolish. There is no guarantee that a genie such as Memnon would reward him."

Durbuluk shrugged again.

"What do the hobgoblins get out of all of this again?" asked Leokas.

"Allustairimarinastralmindivu's ultimate goal is to free Memnon and to restore the kingdom of Memnonnar, but he knows that he needs the help of hobgoblins, and in exchange, he will return to us the hobgoblin portion of the kingdom that was once ours."

"Calimshan was never yours!" protested Hakam.

"Typical Calishite human, seeing your history the way that you want to see it! Travel north to the nation that you humans call Tethyr. To this very day, you will find a gorge with the remains of a massive monolith that my people raised thousands of years ago to the greatness of Nomog-Geaya. How many human nations have monoliths that have persisted for so many ages? Do you think that wandering bandit tribes of hobgoblins could build such a thing? No! We were a kingdom. The lands of Tethyr were fully ours, not those of the Calishites!"

Hakam thought it best to return to the matter at hand rather than argue about ancient history. "Where exactly is the Keep?"

"East of here, several day's journey on foot. I do not know the exact location, but Allustairimarinastralmindivu had obtained a journal from a gnome adventurer, who claimed to have bypassed the Keep's defenses and entered it. She left a map to the site in the journal as well."

"Was the gnome's name Samber? or Ramseb? or anything like that?" asked Hakam.

Durbuluk shook his head. "No, she only signed her name as Stumblesparkle, a typical foolish nickname among those ridiculous people."

"Is this journal and map still here?" asked Solisar.

"It is," Durbuluk replied, "in on of Allustairimarinastralmindivu's storage chambers."

"Beyond the fire traps?" asked Hakam.


"How can they be disabled?"

"They cannot be disabled," said Durbuluk, "but that is not a problem for a fire genie or for a hobgoblin with magical blood like mine."

"I assume that they reset."

"They do."

"Are there other traps?"

"No, but the very walls of the inner chambers are composed of fire, not of stone. You natives of this plane would not fare well."

"Are there other hobgoblins still alive here besides you?" asked Solisar.

"I know not. Remember, I was just trying to escape through the tunnel behind you with my own skin, and now I have lost a good bit of that."

"Did any other hobgoblins go with Allustairimarinastralmindivu?"

"He only took Booyagh with him."

"Why did you not also go?" asked Solisar.

"My talents are not with ancient artifacts and mysteries. I was to remain as long as I could to defend against the undead. Clearly, I failed at that task, as you have now subdued me."

Kytharrah now asked a question. "What do you guard?"

"Allustairimarinastralmindivu's inner sanctum."

"What do you know of Allu's dealings with Samber?" asked Hakam.

"Samber? The same name that you mentioned earlier as a possible name for the gnome? I know nothing of anyone by this name."

"He is a wizard of great power. His was the island where the Allustairimarinastralmindivu first entered our world."

"Ah, the one from whom Allustairimarinastralmindivu stole the gate."

"Stole the gate?" asked Leokas.

"This gate here?" asked Hakam.

"Yes, the gate directly behind you."

"Why would Allu steal a gate to the Plane of Fire?" asked Solisar.

"To lead through an efreeti army for Memnon to lead," said Hakam somberly.

"Yes, exactly," confirmed Durbuluk. "As I said before, Allustairimarinastralmindivu was supremely fortunate to have found an open portal to his plane, and he simply passed through it. He came upon the abode of some powerful wizard with a portal on an isolated island and a band of hobgoblin pirates — with a sailing ship no less. Is it so surprising that he saw this as an opportunity? Everyone knows that to this very day a deep and ancient magic still bars all genies from using their own magic to enter Calimsham or wizards from calling them here. No such magic prevents a portal to the Plane of Fire from operating, however. All Allustairimarinastralmindivu had to do was dismantle the portal and transport it here to Faerûn to rebuild. As you can see behind you, he succeeded."

"Allu told the hobgoblins that the gate would bring warriors from Clangor," said Leokas.

"A lie that appealed to their simple minds more than the truth."

"How is it that Samber has not already located his missing gate and taken it back?" asked Solisar.

"The gate is protected against attempts at scrying. Allustairimarinastralmindivu is not foolish. He knows that the one from whom he stole the gate is a powerful spellcaster who could scry on the gate to find him and teleport here on a whim."

"Why has he not opened the portal yet?" asked Hakam. "Why has the Army of Fire not already come through?

"Because a petty and weak human wizard, a stowaway on Allustairimarinastralmindivu's ship, stole the key."

The party knew that this "petty" wizard was Malick of Darromar, the very one who had set this whole adventure in motion by hiring Leokas many months ago, but they tried hard not to let on to Durbuluk that they knew this or, worse, that they had the very key on one of their persons.

"Is the army waiting on the other side now?" asked Hakam.

"I do not know; I only know that until this mummy attacked us, Allustairimarinastralmindivu was still searching for the lost key. It was a major missing component to his plan. With the loss of the key and now the destruction of his army, the efreet's last chance is to free Memnon earlier than he had willed."

"Is there a way to destroy the portal?"

"I do not know that either. Booyagh might."

"Should we destroy the portal?" asked Belvin.

"There is no need for the portal to be destroyed if the key is still missing," said Solisar.

Kytharrah was growing noticeably bored of the interrogation by now and was scratching at his itching, rotting flesh, causing more fur to fall out.

"Are you satisfied yet," asked Durbuluk, "or do you have further questions?"

"Does the path behind us lead out of the caverns?" asked Solisar.

"It does, to the desert sands."

"How do Allustairimarinastralmindivu's magic bottles work?" asked Hakam. "Is he actually summoned when someone opens the bottle, or do we merely view an image of him?"

Durbuluk seemed thoughtful. "How would you know about these bottles?"

"We found one in the past and foolishly opened it."

"You. You are the ones who have the key. He has searched for so long, and had he only waited, you would have come to him!"

"Were it the case that we had the key," threatened Hakam, "we would have to eliminate anyone who might inform Allustairimarinastralmindivu."

"Now, now," said Durbuluk, "your so-called worshiper of Torm here already gave me a promise."

"Our agreement with you says nothing about finding you again after we let you go."

"After you let me go," said the half-fiend, "you will never find me again. I assure you."

"Nevertheless, you will tell us about the bottles."

"Unlike the bottles crafted by your own people to entrap efreet for their own purposes, these bottles summon Allustairimarinastralmindivu himself for a short time, after which he returns from where he came."

"If one were to open a bottle and then destroy it before that time had passed, what would happen?"

"I have no idea," said Durbuluk.

"Does Allustairimarinastralmindivu have any weaknesses? Or are there any means we could use to bargain with him?"

"You could offer him the gem key." Durbuluk smiled, but then he continued. "If that fails, you could use ice magic, which tends to work well on fire creatures. To be honest, I have never considered attacking him, so I do not know. It seems a foolish thought."

"Bored, bored, bored," complained Kytharrah.

"The fire traps in the chamber below," said Hakam, "what triggers them?"

"They only trigger for non-hobgoblins," Durbuluk replied, "and they only trigger moving away from the center of the four columns."

"So the way into the inner chambers are blocked? Is there any other way in?"

"That tunnel is the only way in. Are we finished here? Are you not yet satisfied? I have told you everything."

"To satisfy us and our agreed-upon conditions, you must tell us everything written in the gnome's journal."

"What? Absurd! I cannot read the language that the journal is written in, and even if I could, do you truly expect me to have memorized it?"

"Can you at least recall the map?"

"Not well enough to draw a copy for you. I only saw it once."

"Then you must retrieve it for us," said Hakam.

"That does not seem to me part of our agreement."

"You agreed to answer all of our questions, and we are questioning you about information found in a document that you clearly have access to. In any human court, this argument would be upheld."

"Perhaps in a human court," said Durbuluk.

"That is the only court that matters at the moment," said Hakam.

"Stay here, and I shall retrieve the the book for you."

"And risk you escaping?" said Leokas.

"We will escort you as far as to the fire traps below," said Hakam.

"So be it. That is only fair," answered the fiendish hobgoblin. "Lead the way."
Session: 99th Game Session - Thursday, Dec 21 2017 from 4:00 AM to 7:00 AM
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Aedda: A Calamidade
Ato III, pt 2 - A Calamidade
O Ato III ocorreu entre os dias 9º e 15º do Mês do Dragão de 2978 p.C. (pós-Criação)

O destino é algo engraçado. Você nunca sabe se está no lugar certo e na hora certa ou onde ele vai te levar. Ou então, quem você vai conhecer e que impacto isso terá no futuro. As pequenas coincidências que ocorrem no nosso dia a dia moldam toda uma cadeia de eventos que culmina no que somos hoje.

Um terremoto separou o grupo de aventureiros que voltava dos esgotos de Vom Garohm após derrotar um convento de bruxas. O primeiro grupo, composto por Àster, Akin, Dremian, Robb e Olara, caiu numa fenda criada pelo terremoto, enquanto o segundo grupo, com Nelath, Ragnar, Katyusha, Zoë e Halzin, conseguiram se segurar até que a fenda fechasse novamente.

O primeiro grupo, sem muitas opções de voltar para a superfície, decidiu explorar os túneis que se abriram perante si a fim de buscar uma saída. Durante o trajeto, conheceram um trio de drows que fugia de um quarto drow recentemente transformado em drider pela malévola Rainha Aranha, Lolth. Com a promessa de que ajudariam o trio a encerrar o sofrimento do amigo em troca de direções para a superfície, uma aliança foi forjada. No dia seguinte, a criatura veio de encontro ao grupo, e com um um esforço conjunto, pereceu. Áster, com sua imensa devoção a Tyr e à Triade, fez um ritual de purificação no corpo do drider, que trouxe sua presença à Rainha Aranha, e a irritou.

Enquanto isso, o segundo grupo concluiu a missão, trazendo Finelien Windhorn, uma das regentes da cidade que estava desaparecida, de volta. Logo no dia seguinte voltaram ao subterrâneo para encontrar seus amigos. O começo dessa busca, no entanto, mostrou o quanto a arrogância pode ser fatal, quando o grupo se viu cercado por uma trupe de goblins e de seu proclamado rei, um hobgoblin chamado Kuktat. Mesmo vendo sua desvantagem estratégica, Nelath continuou lutando, para logo em seguida ser dominada pelo rei, que a levou para seu covil, enquanto Kathy se viu executada pelas flechas dos goblins após acertar Kuktat com um Scorching Ray.

Em cativeiro, o segundo grupo precisava achar uma forma de sair das mãos de Kuktat. Felizmente, Arkud, o anão que cuidava da biblioteca de Vom Garohm, Tinta & Pena, que havia sido descartado pelas bruxas e, a partir de um acordo com o rei dos goblins, virou o cuidador dos prisioneiros. Uma vez sozinho com os prisioneiros , os instruiu dos desafios que poderiam esperar de Kuktat. Em troca, pediu para que o levassem de volta à superfície e junto com ele, Moi, uma svirfneblin que viveu sua vida inteira nas profundezas. No dia seguinte, Nelath foi desafiada a uma série combate (como previsto por Arkud) e em troca conseguiria a liberdade de seus aliados. Surpreendendo a todos com sua proeza em combate, Nelath derrotou cada inimigo que o rei goblin colocava em sua frente. Frustrado e impressionado, Kuktat pulou o último desafio, trazendo o maior guerreiro de sua coleção, um minotauro enlouquecido com o tempo em cativeiro. Seguro de que seu campeão destruiria a centaura em um único golpe, o hobgoblin permitiu que ela escolhesse dois companheiros para lhe prestar assistência, e Nelath decide por chamar Ragnar e Halzin. O combate se mostra brutal, com Nelath e Ragnar caindo inconscientes, mas Halzin felizmente garantindo o golpe final. A dupla é estabilizada e eles caminham para fora do covil. Já longe, eles montam acampamento, e ganham um tempo para descansar e honrar a vida de sua aliada falecia, e Ragnar se abre com Moi, contando um pouco do seu passado. No dia seguinte, encontram o drider purificado, e com a certeza de que estão no caminho correto, seguem viagem.

O primeiro grupo, seguindo caminho, começa a notar a presença de Lolth no seu trajeto, sendo atacada por grupos de aranhas. Durante o descanso, Áster é confrontada novamente pela Rainha Aranha, quase curvando sob seu poder, mas provando como sua devoção a Tyr é mais poderosa e expulsando qualquer resquício de Lolth em seu espírito. Essa batalha interna, porém, levou a paladina a um coma. Com Robb carregando Áster pelo caminho, o grupo seguiu viagem, passando por um posto avançado de drows sem chamar atenção, e chegando no que parecia ser o refúgio de um aventureiro, com um baú fechado. Adentrando o refúgio, o curioso Akin descobre que o baú está sendo guardado, quando uma estranha criatura, com vários olhos, o ataca. O confronto se mostra simples, e o pequeno kenku descobre uma bolsa mágica, contendo várias moedas de platina e alguns itens.

No dia seguinte, Áster acorda e o primeiro grupo segue viagem, para encontrar um grupo de inimigos composto por mais mais aranhas, uma delas gigantesca e um par de drows. Felizmente, o segundo grupo consegue chegar de encontro ao primeiro, e a força em números se mostra suficiente para derrotar os seguidores de Lolth. Mais três dias seguem até o grupo, agora reunido, chegasse a Vom Garohm. Na cidade, os aventureiros dividem as experiências que passaram na última semana, e decidem acompanhar Zoë e Olara até Thaldell, em Valenheim e posteriormente para Ark'hala. Nelath, no entanto, tem outros planos, decidindo seguir ao Norte, para concluir sua exploração do continente de Umend e suas diferentes sociedades. Ela presenteia todos com quem passou um tempo considerável um nome centáurico e pede a Ragnar que dê um enterro digno para Kathy.

Sem Kathy e Nelath, os aventureiros sentem um vazio surgindo, mas com a adição da curiosa Moi e um futuro brilhante a frente, não há o que lamentar no momento, somente esperar o que os deuses lhes prepararam.


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Aedda: A Calamidade
Ato II - Aliados Desaparecidos
O Ato II ocorreu entre os dias 6º e 9º do mês do Dragão de 2978 p.C. (pós-Criação)

A chegada a Galrey trouxe algumas surpresas ao grupo. Após receber suas recompensas e explicarem o ocorrido n'As Fazendas, Kriv é recebido com a notícia de que o que item que procura se encontra nas Ilhas Umnia, um lugar sem regras ou supervisão, conhecido por reunir os piores dos piores de toda Aedda. Junto de seu aliado Firahel, ele partem imediatamente, deixando o grupo com suas comemorações ao fim do Festival das Escamas. Essa comemoração, no entanto, não durou tanto.

Nelath, que se direcionava À Torre para mandar uma carta para sua amiga Áster, em Ark'halla, um retiro de aasimars, recebe da mestra da Guarda Leswin Windhorn a notícia que esta mesma amiga foi selecionada para uma missão de escolta até a cidade anã de Vom Garohm, onde desapareceu, junto de Finelien, mãe de Leswin e uma das regentes da cidade, Zoë Imlerith, a diplomata de Ark'halla, e o resto do grupo de escolta. Leswin então propõe um trato para o grupo: se eles a escoltarem até a cidade, lhes dará uma boa soma em ouro, uma vez que o caminho, mesmo nas trilhas reais, é recheado de perigos.

Já no dia seguinte, o grupo começa sua jornada. Os cinco dias de viagem passam um tanto tranquilos, com exceção do encontro com um elemental de terra, o qual o grupo lutou com facilidade.

Chegando à imponente cidade de basalto, com suas angulosas e altas muralhas, o grupo vai diretamente para a Torre falar com os outros regentes. Eles lhes informam que uma invasão de duergars aconteceu meses atrás que os forçaram a fechar partes do esgoto e que, pouco antes do desaparecimento de Finelien e da caravana de Ark'halla, crianças vinham sumindo.

Os aventureiros resolvem investigar a casa de Finelien, onde todos estavam hospedados e posteriormente pesquisar mapas dos túneis do esgoto na biblioteca local, que vai pelo nome de Tinta e Pena. Dentro da construção, que muito lembrava o formato de um livro aberto, se deparam com um estranho anão arfando, que se apresenta como Arkud Steelback. Desconfiados do anão, eles o interrogam sobre seu passado. Passado uma série de perguntas, Nelath consegue, com seu firme olhar, notar a ilusão por trás da aparência de Arkud, que imediatamente fica invisível e foge.

Buscando desesperadamente rastrear os traços de Arkud, o grupo sai pela cidade, mas sem muito êxito. Após alguma discussão e busca, eles resolvem descer para o esgoto, sua única pista.

A viagem no esgoto não foi das mais agradáveis. Ragnar mal conseguia se concentrar devido ao mal cheiro, chegando a vomitar algumas vezes. Uma armadilha quase tomou a vida de Áquila, falcão de Akin, que com seus gritos desesperados, acabou atraindo um bando de goblins.

Seguindo curso, eles encontram finalmente o covil do que vem atormentando a cidade: uma dupla de bruxas verdes, chamadas Annie e Matilda. No fundo do covil, amarrada por correntes, Finelien e em gaiolas, a caravana de Ark'halla.

A luta se mostra frustrante para ambos os lados: as bruxas, em menor número, utilizam-se de feitiços de Blink para tentar atacar mais adversários sem se machucarem, mas sem sucesso. O outro lado, por conta do mesmo feitiços, precisavam acertar golpes certeiros. No fim, Annie acaba abatida e Matilda, furiosa, lança um feitiço de Blight em Nelath, torna-se invisível e foge.

Sem conseguir acompanhar a criatura, os aventureiros são deixados no covil, sem nenhuma baixa e buscam retornar para superfície.

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Aedda: A Calamidade
Ato I - Destinos Entrelaçados
O Ato I ocorreu entre os dias 2º e 6º do mês do Dragão de 2978 p.C. (pós-Criação)

A cidade de Galrey traz várias surpresas para os residentes e visitantes durante o Festival das Escamas, mas ninguém esperava uma invasão de mortos-vivos. Não fosse a rápida resposta de alguns aventureiros que coincidentemente visitavam a cidade e da guarda da cidade, quem sabe o que poderia ter acontecido.

Durante a competição de culinária anual de Galrey, um incêndio tomou conta da cidade. Carvell, o regente da cidade, após receber uma mensagem de um dos guardas, pediu para a população esperar calmamente enquanto a guarda cuidava da situação.

Sem pensar duas vezes, Nelath, a corajosa centaura guerreira, galopa o mais rápido que pode para o centro da cidade, seguida por Ragnar, o charmoso meio-elfo bardo, Kathyusha, a gananciosa meia-elfa bruxa, Robb, o calmo firbolg druida, Kepesk, o curioso clérigo lizardfolk, Kriv, o azarado feiticeiro draconato, e Firahel, o estranho alto-elfo arqueiro. O grupo de estranhos encontra dois ogros em estado de putrefação, destruindo a cidade enquanto passavam. Com uma coordenação inconsciente, eles conseguiram derrotar os ogros, que insistiam em levantar, enquanto Kathy vasculhava pela casas em busca de alguma coisa para roubar.

Enquanto Kathy e Ragnar aproveitaram a confusão para invadir a Torre, o prédio central da cidade e sede da Regência, por um buraco em sua estrutura, o resto do grupo foi convidado a entrar pela porta da frente e encontrar a mestre da Guarda Leswin, uma anã da colina de cabelos roxos presos num rabo de cavalo e olhos amarelos, para conversar sobre o incidente. Eles descobrem que além dos ogros, uma série de humanoides em variados estados de decomposição "visitaram" a cidade. Leswin oferece um contrato para investigar a origem desses mortos-vivos, por 200 peças de ouro por semana e 10 peças de ouro por escalpo (inclusive para Ragnar e Kathy, que foram presos e intimados a pagar uma fiança de 70 peças de ouro pelo mestre da Lei, Alnan).

No amanhecer do dia seguinte, um guarda informa o grupo de que eles encontraram rastros que direcionam para norte do reino, e eles o seguem imediatamente. No meio do trajeto, encontram fazendeiros indo de carroça para Galrey, e recebem a informação de que a região conhecida como "As Fazendas", na mesma direção dos rastros, vem tendo problemas com a produção de carne desde o mês passado. Ao fim do dia, os aventureiros decidem acampar à beira de um lago rodeado por um bosque, e turnos de vigília são decididos para que todos possam descansar em segurança.

No fim do último turno, Nelath e Firahel percebem movimentos nos arbustos do bosque. Tentando investigar mais de perto, a guerreira encontra 4 bandidos de trilha. Estes, no entanto, não parecem interessados nela, e continuam correndo, acabam sendo massacrados pelo grupo agora acordado. Um instante passa e o motivo da pressa aparece: um par de lobos atrozes em decomposição. A vantagem em números faz o combate ser fácil, mesmo com o retorno à vida dos lobos.

Com um belo café da manhã preparado por Robb, a companhia segue viagem e chega Às Fazendas ao pôr-do-sol. A visão não é algo bonito: quatro celeiros, ocupados por dezenas de figuras mortas-vivas (humanoides, ogros, animais), rodeiam um obelisco, com hieróglifos em abissal e uma safira no topo, emanando um brilho azul fantasmagórico. Na sua frente, uma figura humanoide empunhando uma espada de duas mãos, vigiando.

Antes que qualquer um pudesse agir, um barulho na orla da floresta que cercam os celeiros chama a atenção dos aventureiros. A investigação revela Akin, um peculiar kenku ranger, que informa estar caçando o mesmo alvo que o grupo, e decidem unir forças.

Alguma especulação segue em como terminar o encontro sem baixas, até que Robb, percebendo que os mortos-vivos não os atacavam, resolveu se comunicar com a guerreira na frente do obelisco. Esta se apresenta como Aliz, uma meia-orc fadada a proteger a mesma coisa que a prende nesse mundo e que deseja descanso mais do que tudo. Ela diz que ''quando o Sol e a Lua encontrarem", a maldição será quebrada.

Ragnar, através de seu conhecimento arqueológico, decifra os hieróglifos no obelisco, identificando os símbolos para Sol, Lua, Campo e Montanha, mas vendo parte da sua essência ser sugada pelo obelisco. Ele então instrui o grupo a girar as peças de forma a colocar os símbolos do Sol e da Lua na mesma face.

A simples ação de Robb ao tocar no obelisco fez todos os mortos-vivos se movimentarem em direção ao mesmo. Aliz perdeu seu tom pacífico e atacou ferozmente todos que estavam na sua frente. O grupo consegue neutralizá-la antes de que seus reforços pudessem chegar, resistindo inclusive às propriedades sobrenaturais do obelisco e, enfim, desativando-o.

A queda dos mortos-vivos não foi algo bonito de se ver. Enquanto algumas pessoas pareciam apenas acordar de um longo coma, outras simplesmente espatifavam no chão, sem vida.

Após enterrarem Aliz, que descobriram ser uma guarda que protefia o local há alguns anos, depois de conversar com Jim, o filho do ancião líder d'As Fazendas, os aventureiros descansaram e partiram para Galrey completar sua missão, coletar suas recompensas e pagar suas dívidas.


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Down under the Observatory, part 2
(Day 23)
We returned to the Observatory and began looking into the room adjacent to the "Catalogue of Days", which was the "Catalogue of Nights", a repository of deaths of ancient Wati.
A room across the hallway from that was full of sarcophagi and mummified animals, including an elephant.

Down the stairs, we found a room with blue tiles laid across the whole floor. These were a magical trap that flung the tiles with great force across the room. Amestri disabled the magic, and we moved on.
Beyond that, large doors led to an almost-octagonal room, very large, dominated by a 15'-tall statue of Pharasma as Matron. It had hieroglyphs on the walls, interrupted by floor-to ceiling curtains. Most of the curtains hid alcoves which contained shrines to different aspects of Pharasma.
One curtain led to a dormitory area. In two of the beds were deceased women, well dressed and not mummified. Magical and medical examination showed them to be young priestesses of Calistria, dead from exposure to the desert. Their corpses were preserved by magic, but they were not undead. Since Nebta-khufre had recently come from Tefu, perhaps they came through the desert from there? One large bed in this area had been slept in recently, and had many notes in his hand.
Another alcove hid a crypt thing, an undead guardian who told us to leave. He magicked away Khismia and Amestri, fortunately they did not go far, and then began to battle with us.
Khismia only went as far as the unoccupied dormitory. Amestri ended up in a long room occupied by a ghastly half-orc. She fled, and luckily ended up in the same room as everyone else.
Ostog held the ghast while the others dealt with the crypt thing, then Khismia moved to cast upon the ghast. Unfortunately, everyone's timing was off, and the ghast ripped Khismia apart before Sallah, Jes, and Novid could kill it.
We took her body with us, and returned to the Pharasman temple to request her return. Ostog sold off most of the magical cloaks and other items we'd collected to pay for the spell's components. We all rested for the night.

Day 24
When we returned to the room we had just left, the bodies of the undead had not been altered, and the tile-floor-trap had not only restarted, but had replaced the tiles destroyed in yesterday's attack.
Beyond this, and down more steps, was a silent room that had deep pits along both walls. These had once been fire pits, it seemed. A bubbly fountain lay in the center of the room, in front of a large statue of Anubis. This Graven Guardian fought us for a long time before I was able to finish it with a Ray of Acid.
After that was a Really Big Round Room with a pyramidal platform in its center, a walkway high around the outside of the room held up by statues of Pharasma. Bodies lay all around the room, but two mummies flanked the steps up the platform.
Atop that stood Nebta-Khufre, wearing a very magical golden mask. We fought. It was a LONG Fight. My spells kept him at bay most of the time, while the others fought two mummies and 6 zombies that he raised from among the many corpses on the floor.

After finally defeating him and his protectors, we took all of the magic items from the room and returned to inform the Pharasmins of our efforts. The mask was indeed that of the Forgotten Pharaoh, and was highly magical.

Days 25-26 We rested, and then escorted an eager Amestri (hopefully fully recovered from mummy rot?) into the Observatory's several genealogical libraries. There were no more monsters remaining in the lower levels.
There was an interesting room, with a miniature representation of Wati laid out on the floor, complete with running water, miniature people, animals, and buildings. The only difference is that a large obelisk (representing Pharasma's Judgement) arose from the site of the current Mausoleum.
Ostog busied himself with the spellbook of Nebta-Khufre, as well as any plans or other information he may have left in his papers.

Seti the Crocodile was busy with a 2-day-long ritual, intended to lay to rest the remaining undead who rose in response to Nebta's actions.

The Pharasmins had almost no information on the Sky Pharaoh, Forgotten as he was. They suggest the libraries of Tephu for future research.

We shall head there, but after a week or so of preparations and recovery from our labors here in Wati.
Session: Game Session 15 - Saturday, Jul 28 2018 from 10:00 PM to 5:00 AM
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