Thursday, December 7, 2017

OLD SKOOL CAMPAIGN DIARY: BACK TO THE MOAT HOUSE

The Heroes:
  • ·         Anton Loyalar: Oeridian Paladin of Heironeous
  • ·         Coppyr: Halfing Monk
  • ·         Eli Pendar: Flannish Cleric of Pholtus
  • ·         Tharn: Dwarf barbarian of the Fireforge clan

Our heroes return to Hommlet and are told by Ostler that Burne is back in town and is interested in their offer to clean up the bandit issue.  The heroes then head over to Burne’s tower and meet with him.  Burne agrees to pay them a sum of 500gp to find the bandit’s nest and end the threat, provided they bring back proof that their leader has been captured or killed and if they will look for any signs of a missing collegue of his, Prince Thrommel.  The heroes agree and mention that they learned the leader is a Lolth worshipper named Lareth.  Although Burne did not know of Lareth, he was interested that a Lolth worshipper was leading the bandits and seemed concerned about the demoness’ ambitions and plans for the region.

After meeting with Burne, the heroes head back to the Welcome Wench behind a number of villagers that had just finished their militia training for the day.  Eli takes advantage of the crowd and begins touting the virtues of Photus.  He garners great interest and spends a couple of hours answering questions.  The heroes eventually go up to their rooms (convincing Ostler to let them use the missing Spugnois’ room) and settle down for the night.

At around midnight, after tossing and turning several times, unable to sleep due to Tharn’s incessant snoring, Eli hears someone walking around in the hall.  The movements sound suspicious enough for him to get out of bed to investigate, but he finds the hall empty.  He proceeds to walk the hall to see if Anton’s door was locked when he hears a creaking sound from inside.  He knocks on the door and Anton sleepily opens it.  That’s when a shadowing assailant attacks them from the darkness of the paladin’s room!  The would-be assassin presses his advantage against the two unarmed and unarmored heroes and manages to cut Anton with a poisoned blade.  Eli blasts the attacker with his holy power and drives him back, jumping out the window and escaping.  He wakes Coppyr and Tharn and they tend to Anton’s wounds, healing him with prayers.  The four decide to lock themselves in Spugnois’ room for the rest of the night.

The following day, the group heads out to the moat house to finish what they started before.  They take a different route, approaching the structure from another angle.  They find that the bodies they’d left behind have been removed and the place appears to be abandoned.  They head down the main stairs and into the dungeons below.
At the bottom of the stairs, Coppyr discovers a batch of green slime and warns the others.  Eli burns it with a spell.  This alerts the zombies, who begin attacking from the chamber beyond the stairs.  The heroes fight through the shambling corpses, destroying them all, then begin to explore the dungeon.


End of session.  

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

OLD SKOOL CAMPAIGN DIARY: THE ROAD BACK TO HOMMLET

The Heroes:
  • Anton Loyalar: Oeridian Paladin of Heironeous
  • Coppyr: Halfing Monk
  • Eli Pendar: Flannish Cleric of Pholtus
  • Tharn: Dwarf barbarian of the Fireforge clan
After exchanging the Moat House loot for items they need, the heroes hit the road back to Hommlet.  As they near the town, they reach a crossroads and encounter two of the people they saw in the Welcome Wench a few days earlier – Zert and Furnok.  The two offer to tag along with the group offering their “protection” from bandits on the road, for a price.  The heroes decline the offer and the two head on down the road towards the town of Nulb.

The heroes continue on towards Hommlet and as it starts to get dark, they see what appears to be wagons on and off the road ahead of them, but no people around them.  They approach the wagons and spot movement in the brush off the side of the road – AMBUSH!   Zert and Furnock fire crossbows at them from one side of the road, while two others – also from the Welcome Wench, Kobort and Turuko – charge them from the other side of the road!

Zert and Furnock focus on the cleric Eli, while Kobort and Turuko attack the other three.  Eli holds the two off for a time, but is taken down.  Zert steals the cleric’s pack and boots and runs into the brush.  Furnock joins the fight against Coppyr, Tharn and Anton.  Turuko managers to kill the halfling Coppyr and turns his attention to Anton.  He manages to knock the paladin senseless, but not before Anton helped Eli back up.  Furnok is killed, which makes Turuko reassess their situation.  He tells the heroes that if they want to see their friend, the wizard Spugnois alive, they’ll let he and Kobort go.  He tells them that the wizard is being held at the Moat House.  Eli, angry at Coppy’s death, kills Turuko.  That causes Kobort to go mad with grief and he continues his attack against  the remaining three heroes, but goes down fighting. 

The group takes the body of Coppyr to Hommlet and to the church of St Cuthbert.  There, Calmert the priest says that Cannon Terjon could perform a Raise Dead ritual, but that it would require a 500gp diamond (which they don’t have) and would have to be done within 10 days.  Calmert prays for Coppyr to preserve his corpse and the heroes take him back to Verbobonc, trade some of the loot they got from the road fight in for money to buy the diamond, then find a Heironeous temple in Verbobonc to perform the ritual.  They then rest a few days in town, allowing the restored Coppyr to shake off the effects of being brought back to life, and then they head on back to Hommlet.


End of session.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

OLD SKOOL CAMPAIGN DIARY: THE VILLAGE OF HOMMLET PT. 3

The Heroes:
  • Anton Loyalar: Oeridian Paladin of Heironeous
  • Coppyr: Halfing Monk
  • Eli Pendar: Flannish Cleric of Pholtus
  • Tharn: Dwarf barbarian of the Fireforge clan
Upon finding Eli Pendar seemingly dead under the giant spider that sprung upon in him the ruins of the tower, the rest of the group move in to save their companion.  Between their attacks of steel, fist and magic, they drive the spider back up into the shambles of the collapsed 2nd floor and set the webbing on fire.  This allows them to pull Eli's inert body out of the tower, but it also drives the spider out and it tries to escape along the top of the adjoining wall.  Anton skewers the spider with a javelin and it falls upon a pile of rubble, dead.

​The heroes decide to take Eli out of the moat house to see if he can be revived, and they move to safer ground some distance away.  After an hour or so, Eli recovers and the group use this time to tend to their wounds.  Then they returned to the moat house, only to come under fire by unseen assailants firing crossbows from the arrow slits of the interior buildings.  The group rush inside the opening and confront the bandits holed up within.  The fight ends with the heroes taking two prisoners.  They search the ruins and find a few items of interest, a large snake and a large lizard that they must deal with.  But they do manage to locate the bandit's loot chest, hidden under a pile of rubble, and an older chest in one of the rooms.  

​While deciding what to do next, they question the one conscious bandit and learn that there is a master of the moat house, named "Lareth the Beautiful", and the bandit claims that he is a priest of Lolth and her "chosen one."  The bandit seems certain that Lareth will exact his vengeance upon the heroes for killing his pet spider and daring to invade his moat house.  

​The heroes decide to leave the moat house, taking the two bandits with them, and go back to Hommlet to decide what to do next.  En route, they encounter a town guard, whom they give the bandits to for proper handling, and then they go back to the Welcome Wench Inn.  There they divide up their findings and decide to go back to Verbobonc to sell some of their acquisitions before returning to Hommlet.  The wizard Spugnois decides to stay behind to see if anything happens in the moat house or with the bandit activity while the heroes are gone.

​Back in Verbobonc, the heroes sell their items, do some additional shopping for themselves, and learn that one of the items found - the very fine broadsword - belonged to a knight of a minor noble family, the Taberts.  This information came from a representative of the Knights of the Hart, who informs Anton and also asks him to see if he can learn the fate of the Tabert son, who went missing at the same time that the beloved Prince Thrommel did, nearly a decade ago.  The prince was to marry the Noble Ladyship of Velune, Jolene, which would benefit the knighthood and strengthen the defenses of both nations, but that marriage has been postponed due to the princes' disappearance, supposedly at the hands of the agents of Elemental Evil that escaped their defeat at both the Battle of Emridy Meadows and the subsequent Battle of the Temple of Elemental Evil.  

​End of session.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

OLD SKOOL CAMPAIGN DIARY: VILLAGE OF HOMMLET, PT. 2

The Heroes:
  • Anton Loyalar: Oeridian Paladin of Heironeous
  • Coppyr: Halfing Monk
  • Eli Pendar: Flannish Cleric of Pholtus
  • Tharn: Dwarf barbarian of the Fireforge clan


Our heroes spend the evening hours in the Welcome Wench.  Anton Loyalar retires early to get a bath and the others go to the dormitory later.  Prior to this, however, a few of them hung around the common room to try and gather information.  Eli spoke with Ostler Gundigoot, the proprietor of the inn, and learned that the structure being built is a fortress that is being funded by the viscount of Verbobonc to try and stabilize the area.  Eli also learned that any attempt to start up a temple in town would probably meet fierce opposition by the local chief cleric of St. Cuthbert, Terjon.  flaming eye symbol belonged to a cult of “elemental evil,” which caused trouble a decade or so ago that culminated in the Battle of Emridy Meadows.  That costly battle resulted in the army raised by the cult being destroyed and the cult’s leader’s driven back to their headquarters, a temple near the town of Nulb.  The Knights of the Hart called in powerful wizards and priests to lock down the temple to prevent any from entering or exiting, and such has it been for the past 12 years or so.  The news of bandits bearing that symbol concerned Ostler, who summoned the town council for a meeting that night at the inn.  Eli tried listening in, but heard only concerns and skepticism on the validity of the claim with no affirmative action being decided.

The following morning, the heroes arise and meet Spugnois in the common room.  They eat breakfast and Eli hits up Ostler with the idea of hiring adventurers to look into the bandit/cult connection, but Ostler said the council wouldn’t pay for such an effort without more solid proof. 

The heroes finish their meals and hit the trail to the moat house, following Spugnois, who had already done some research on the place.  Just outside of town, the moat house was an outpost used by bandits and brigands and caused much trouble to Hommlet, but it was basically destroyed and the bandits scattered when a connection to the Temple of Elemental Evil was made.  It has been a crumbling ruin ever since, but Spugnois believes it to be the likely hideout of the brigands troubling Hommlet currently. 

They travel through some woods and some bog, finding prints along the way suggesting recent traffic to the moat house.  A trail leading up to the structure comes into view and Coppyr tries sneaking up to get a better look.  The moat house looks very dilapidated and unlikely to host any groups within, but the heroes approach to check it out.  As they near the moat house, several giant frogs emerge from the moat surrounding the structure and attack!  The heroes manage to fight off and kill the frogs and then enter through the front opening.  Eli checks out the dark tower at the entrance and is confronted by a giant spider, who gets the drop on the cleric and poisons him with a bite!


End of session.

Monday, November 13, 2017

OLD SKOOL CAMPAIGN: VILLAGE OF HOMMLET PT 1

It is a time for adventure!  An eon after the Twin Cataclysms reshaped Eastern Oerik, referred to as the Flanaess, opportunity abounds!  Ruins of old are being discovered, ancient treasures unearthed and the spirit of exploration has been rekindled.  As a tentative peace is maintained across the central Flanaess, adventurers take to the hills, valleys and mountains searching their fortunes. 

One such group gathers in Verbobonc.  Drawn together by happenstance, the group find common ground in a tavern, where so many such compacts are formed, and together they hit the road to learn what troubles the village of Hommlet. 

Anton Loyalar, Oeridian paladin of Heironeous and member of the Knights of the Hart
Eli Pendar, Flannish cleric of Pholtus
Coppyr, Halfling monk, and
Tharn, dwarf barbarian of the Fireforge clan

Together, this group travels the trade road from Verbobonc in to the Kron Hills and towards Hommlet, but they encounter a group of brigands in the road, intent upon relieving them of their purses.  The heroes quickly show them the error of their ways.  Though one escaped the scuffle, the others will harass travelers no more.  Hidden upon one of their number was a strange parchment bearing a symbol of a flaming eye.  Not knowing the significance of this, the group tuck this away for future reference and continue onward to Hommlet.

Upon reaching the village, they are immediately accosted by a member of the local church.  Calmer greets them upon the road, hands full of the writtings of St. Cuthbert of the Cudgel, and attempts to lure them into the nearby temple to fill the offering bin.  The heroes bypass the cleric and continue on into town towards the large inn. 

Outside of the large structure, a sign bearing a smiling, buxom young lass and the words The Welcome Wench Inn, greet them.  They enter the structure and find a few patrons partaking in food and drink.  They are welcomed by a young lass who escorts them to a vacant table and takes their orders with a smile.  They survey the room and see a number of locals and a few others that appear to be passing through as they are.  A couple of Flan or Baklunish  travelers speaking in a tongue none of them are familiar with, give them an unfriendly glare before returning to their private conversation.  Another fellow seems to be trying his luck in convincing the serving girl to return to his chambers.   Another sits alone dining in the center of the room, casting glances back towards the heroes’ table. 

Eli, skilled in reading lips, tries to discern any interesting conversations, but abandons that for a more direct approach and goes to the bar when a couple of locals speak animatedly with the barkeep.  Near these three, a stranger watches and listens to that conversation with great interest as they speak of the financial troubles of Hommlet due to the reduction in traffic thanks to a rash of bandit attacks on the roads. 

Eli and the stranger, who introduces himself as Spugnois, talk and the latter reveals himself to be a mage seeking adventure so that he may grow in his magical prowess.  He tells Eli of rumors of activity in a structure on the outskirts of town that the locals call the “moat house.”  Apparently, some time ago, the moat house was used as an outpost for a cult of evil doers, but that cult was wiped out and the moat house has been abandoned ever since.  Spugnois believes it to be a perfect hideout for the bandits that have been plaguing town and has been looking for others to go check it out with him.  Eli takes the mage to meet the others and as a group they agree to accompany Spugnois to the moat house.  The group agrees to meet at first light, and the mage excuses himself to study and to get some rest.


End of session.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

SOTDL CAMPAIGN DIARY: THE END IS NEAR PT 3, 10/24/17 - THE FINALE

The Heroes:
·   Ecna Lubma: dwarf priest grudgebearer healer
·     Gruntbelly: dwarf magician sorcerer wizard
·     Kane Arroway: human warrior fighter sharpshooter
·     Mathias: jotun jotun juggernaut spirit warrior

Picking up where we left off, our heroes had just confronted Katandramus and the Brotherhood of Shadows as they performed a ritual that tore a hole in the sky above Crossings in order to let the Demon Lord into this world.  Gruntbelly had been killed by a spell cast by Inquisitor Masivar and Katandramus himself was in the center of the town square, surrounded by a protective field of magic as he completed the ritual while his Dark Brothers and demon servant attacked the heroes.

Ecna recovered from his injuries enough to restore Gruntbelly to life.  Gruntbelly used his magic to get out of the danger zone and, after healing up, they provided support to Mathias, who was fighting the demon and the cultists toe-to-toe, while Kane rained down arrows from his perch.  As they whittled away at the cultists, the tear in the sky widened revealing a great, red eye (the Demon Lord?).  Also as they fought, Kane saw several cultists disappearing across the square as a blur moved from building to building apparently taking them out. 

To make matters worse, the ground begins to tremble, and at a distance outside of the city, they see the enormous bulk of the Destroyer of Worlds, approaching Crossings. 

Katandramus completes the ritual and focuses his attentions on the heroes.  Using the Eye of the Demon Lord, he unleashes wave upon wave of destructive energy upon the heroes, forcing them to use every resource at their disposal to avoid being disabled or killed. 

Gruntbelly uses his magic to pound away at the barrier protecting Katandramus and finally brings it down.  Mathias risks moving away from the demon to confront the cult leader and draws the Sword of Unmaking to end his threat, but as the weapon comes down upon Katandramus, it stops and refuses to hit him!  Katandramus laughs and explains that the sword and the eye are brethren and will not harm each other.  But his amusement is short lived as Gruntbelly strikes him with magic that stuns the cultist and then the blur that had been aiding them throughout the battle, emerges from a building and reveals herself as Lucretia!  She attacks the defenseless Katandramus, tearing out his throat and feasting upon his blood.  As he dies, his connection to the ritual maintaining the tear in the sky ends and it begins to close, locking the Demon Lord away once again.

At this point, the tremors become so intense that its all the heroes can do to stand and they see that the Destroyer of Worlds is at the city gates.  Buildings around them fall, and the very earth erupts in stone and magma at the demon prince’s approach. 

The heroes find their magic carpet nearby and use it to fly to the Destroyer of Worlds.  They fly above the enormous abomination and Mathias drops down upon it from above, attempting to use the Sword of Unmaking on the monster.  But Mathias is unable to get a good strike on the demon prince initially, and the Sword of Unmaking begins to unmake him instead!  Finally, thanks to assistance from his friends, Mathias gets two solid strikes on the Destroyer of Worlds, and the demon is unmade and disappears.

The heroes scoop up the falling Mathias, head back to the partially destroyed Crossings and take stock of what has happened.

Kane’s family are found safe.

Ecna recovers Stohk Ironbrow’s body and uses his magic to restore the dwarf to life.

Most of the town’s leadership is dead, along with the inquisitors that had imprisoned Randofus, Crowley and many others.  Randofus remains alive, but gives up his title of Inquisitor to wander the land seeking a deeper truth. 


At this point, the heroes settle down for a well-deserved rest, as they have saved the world from certain destruction.  But elsewhere, the Great Dragon stirs in its mountain, awakened by these disturbances, and a great hunger burns in its belly…

Friday, October 20, 2017

SOTDL CAMPAIGN DIARY: THE END IS NEAR, PT 2, 10/17/17

The Heroes:
·     Ecna Lubma: dwarf priest grudgebearer healer
·     Gruntbelly: dwarf magician sorcerer wizard
·     Kane Arroway: human warrior fighter sharpshooter
·     Mathias: jotun jotun juggernaut spirit warrior

The heroes finish off the cultists in the tower and spot out the windows activity happening outside.  They look and see that the wall that had prevented them from entering the central part of town was going down, probably as a result of their stopping the cultists.  But as this occurs, the glowing fey spires begin to glow brighter and then each emit a bright beam of power that converge upon a central location in the skies above Crossings.  There, the space begins to warp and a dark hole appears in the sky, unnervingly similar to the hole that the Destroyer of Worlds emerged from just days earlier.  The heroes also spot activity on the ground directly below the hole in the sky.

The heroes rush down to the ground level and take their flying carpet towards the area where this is occurring.  The turbulence caused by the energy beams and the hole in the sky causes the rug to go haywire and it bucks the two dwarfs and jotun off.  They fall roughly to a nearby rooftop.  Kane holds on to the rug for a few moments, then drops to another nearby rooftop.  The group converge in an alley and spot the area where they saw activity and see more cultists in the town market square.  They also spot someone having been crucified in that area, likely being sacrificed in the ritual that is activating the fey towers.

Mathias moves in first, sneaking up to the nearest building and climbing in the 2nd floor window, surprising the cultist there.  Kane follows and the two fight the cultist while Ecna and Gruntbelly proceed on the street level.  Gruntbelly spots a spellcaster on a nearby roof and uses his magic to summon a burst of wind, knocking the cultist off the roof.  This alerts other nearby cultists, who proceed to move in on the two dwarves and attack. 

The market square is a flurry of activity.  The center of the square is a whirlwind of energy with the leader of the Brotherhood of Shadows, Katandramus, at its center, apparently driving the ritual.  Surrounding him are several cultists, many appearing inhuman with red skin and horns, others appear to be normal humans, but all bearing the robes of the brotherhood.  Among them the heroes spot Inquisitor Masivar and they also spot a large demon on a rooftop. 

Mathias and Kane finish off the cultist in the building and the joten changes into a bird and tries to fly to Katandramus, but is stopped by the barrier created by the energies swirling around the cult leader. 

Ecna and Gruntbelly manage to kill some cultists, but the numbers pressing in on them result in Gruntbelly going down.  He survives for a time until Masivar casts a spell in that area and the dark tentacles he summons kills the dwarf!

Kane, Ecna and Mathias are left and things look grim as the cultists and demon bear down upon them and, as they look  upward, the see an impossible large, red and inhuman eye peering through the widening hole in the sky…


End of session.