Chris (Seb), Dean (Elmond), Matt (Valadin), and Jeff (Rumble) are returning cast members playing alternate characters.
We left the party attempting to return a princess to her arranged wedding, but our viewpoint shifts to follow a new group of adventurers, some of whom were last seen in Restenford fighting wererats or fighting undead near Darkshelf, and some who are entirely new to us. Elmond, an elf with attention-deficit disorder, was traveling with some chance-met companions within the Bandit Kingdoms, heading towards Rookroost. His companions were: Rumble, a wood elven druid; Valadin, a fallen paladin with an unholy passenger; and Seb, a halfing thief.
The caravan stopped at an inn for the night, where everyone arranged to stay. While having dinner in the common room, however, the four adventurers could not help but overhear four of the locals talking about their plans to explore the lair of a lich that lay conveniently nearby. They had a crudely-drawn map, and a poor explanation of how they came across it, but the four adventurers agreed – after quite a few rounds of the local ale – to accompany the locals on their exploration. There would be enough treasure for all.
The map depicted a nearby lair, apparently with four entrances, each with some sort of symbol associated with it. After arguing about the meaning of the symbols and not coming to any solid conclusions, the group decided to go to bed. Seb set a trap on his door in case of intruders; a bell tied to a string…
Around 3am, the ringing of the bell woke Seb from his dreams. Someone was busting in the door! Startled by the intrusion, but forewarned somewhat due to his preparations, Seb quickly slipped into the shadows and watched as three rough thugs tossed his room for valuables. They found only his coin pouch, not exactly stuffed full of gold, but apparently it was enough to excite them. As they slipped out the door, Seb slipped his hand ‘round the pouch – pickpocketing his own bag of coins back from the thieves without being noticed.
The thieves broke down Valadin’s door next. He sat up in bed and invited them in with an ominous tone. The leader moved to enter the small room, and Valadin raised his hands in an arcane gesture, casting Burning Hands. The flames flooded into the hallway, doing a small amount of damage to the thieves… but setting the wooden building material aflame. The leader, undaunted, stepped into Valadin’s room and slashed at him; blood began to drain from the wound.
Seb took advantage of the distraction to backstab one of the thieves, lowering his body to the floor silently.
The leader of the thieves attacked Valadin again, and Seb again used the distraction to take down one of the others from hiding.
Elmond opened his door to assess the situation, noting that the building was on fire, and began shouting “Fire! Fire!” in a crowded hallway. Seeing that their cover was blown, the thief nearest the stairway ran out and escaped, while Seb, Valadin and Elmond killed the one who remained before fleeing themselves. Rumble, who had slept through being robbed, did wake up in time to flee the fire.
The inn’s staff formed a bucket brigate from their well to put out the fire, and managed to succeed – though the smell of smoke remained strong. The group went back to bed for the rest of the night.
In the morning, the four would-be local adventurers returned to the inn and met up with the three party members still interested in the expedition to the lair of the lich, bringing a rented cart “to haul our treasure back”. A short journey brought them to a crater-like depression, with a central mound and four satellite mounds oriented to the cardinal compass points. Each of the four satellite mounds had an entrance, apparently open to all, marked with some kind of symbol on the lintel.
After even more discussion, the party decided the symbols were the four elements – earth, fire, water, air – and chose to enter the one marked “fire”. Two of the local adventurers took the lead, with the rest of the group hanging back about twenty feet in case of trouble.
Before long, there was a colossal boom, and a fiery explosion obliterated the two characters leading the group. The rest of the party retreated to re-think the situation, and tried sending arrows down each of the four passageways to judge what might happen. Elmond’s arrows seemingly did nothing, until he returned to the passageway labeled with fire. His arrow set off a second explosion. The group decided fire was not for them, and tried air instead. Seb looked for traps near the entrance, failed to find any, but did find a large footprint from some kind of strange creature.
They sent the two locals in first, with a large distance between them. After a few minutes, the furthest one in yelled back that he heard breathing… then the torch he was holding suddenly fell to the ground. The group advanced together far enough to see that he had died from a massive bite wound, and his entrails were missing entirely.
Elmond prepared another fire arrow, and shot it into the distance… it hit something, and stuck in it, still burning brightly. A moment later the flame began to move rapidly towards the group!
Hurriedly backing out of the tunnel while firing arrows at the charging creature, they gradually whittled it down to size. The last of the locals made a heroic stand at the mouth of the tunnel, inflicting small wounds while the rest of the group continued their archery practice. He fell even as the creature turned on Valadin, slicing his throat with a single clawed swipe, and falling almost immediately thereafter to the party’s arrows.
Quick action saved both Valadin and the local would-be adventurer, and the group dragged their kill to the cart and returned to town with triumphant thoughts of skinning the creature for its scaly hide and making a belt, a pair of boots, perhaps a purse… The complete and true accounts of Seb Mertins or, A book of alibis
The doctor says I should keep an account of my whereabouts, as I seem to regularly end up being unjustly accused of all sorts of shenanigans. Racists. It’s been a few weeks since the entire affair with the killer frogs, mudtigers, and strange hobgoblin wearing only his tightie-whities. I’d hired onto a caravan, protecting gods know what, with three others: an elf calling himself Elmond, another elf, called Rumble (he’s got twigs and bird shit in his hair), and a paladin? Fighter? He alternatively goes by Paladin the Paladin (PtP) or Window. He’s alright, some of the time. Honestly, they all seem to be.
After a short trip from Dunwitch, the caravan opted to stop for the night at a roadside inn. I’m feeling nervous about our proximity to Rookroost, and was happy to stay the night. That said, I sometimes can’t help myself. Before we went into the inn, we left our horses at the stables. I fine, champion of a pony, I left. Worth at least 1,000 gp, and in the bags, I’d forgotten to take most of my coin! Another 500 gold! But I got distracted, you see. PtP had gone into something of a trance. Praying, maybe? Seeing a great opportunity to endear myself to my new friends, I borrowed the shovel from the stable, and quickly piled horse shit in a full circle around him, at least six feed wide in all directions. It was awful. When he snapped out of it, I’d already hidden in a corner. He was immediately disgusted, and when he tried to step over the circle, he SLIPPED!! Fell face-first into giant pile of shit! Glorious! And better, when he tried to get up, he slipped and fell in again! I hope he didn’t get in any his mouth!
Inside, some locals were drinking and (loudly) discussing plans for an expedition. Didn’t take much convincing for these guys to include us in their treasure hunt. I think I overheard the caravan say that we weren’t needed; we’d never have just abandoned them, afterall. After we calmly and quietly had a few drinks, we each took our leave. Like normal, I went ahead and tied a string to the bedstand from the doorknob, and set a small bell. Living in Rookroost all your life, you pick up a thing or two.
Just after I’d started to doze, the alarm jingled quietly. As the door opened quickly, I hopped out of bed, and hid. A couple really big guys popped their head in, but I couldn’t make out their features. They rifled through my bags, but didn’t take anything (as if I’d keep any of my valuables away from my person!). After they left the room, I paused a few minutes, then smelled something burning. Poking my head out, I saw two or three bodies lying in the hall, a dark dressed man running down the stairs, and a growing fire! Obviously, I took off, yelling “Fire! Fire! Wake the hells up!”, just in case. My new friends weren’t far behind, and we ran outside. We escaped the inferno, and I noticed the jerk had stolen my pony!! With over 3,000 gold in it’s saddle! A loss of, at least, 10,000 gold! Surely, the authorities will see fit to award me my lost funds immediately.
While the constable puts together the funds to compensate me, we did stick to our planned expedition with the local yokels. Half a day’s travel, and we found a crater, with five raised mounts. Four, matching the cardinal directions, had a cave entrance, and the fifth, in the middle a large pillar (?) with some glyphs. The caves had a similar structure with more glyphs. I didn’t recognize any of them, but the guys settled on the symbols referring to the four elementals and the void, I guess? Whatever, I’m here for the loots. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I faintly recalled that the locals had said something about a lich, but I couldn’t be bothered; this was a fun chance to explore!
Gathering the guys, we marched into the tunnel labeled with a ‘fire’ symbol. About 100 yards in, I swear to the gods, the fucking exploded. Just boom and they’re gone. We took this as a warning sign, and backed out. A little debate, and some fine speechcrafting on my part later, and the remaining folks are ready to try again. This time, Elmond wanted to shoot an arrow down each corridor. Air – nothing. Water – Nothing. Fire - boom. We’re not going that way. Following his lead, I lit an arrow that’d been wrapped in cloth, and shot it down the ‘air’ corridor; it hit something. Not a clank, but a thud. Then some screeching. I tried to speak it’s language, and was making progress, when a DINOSAUR emerged from the cave. On two legs, little arms hanging uselessly, with the biggest, scariest teeth I’ve ever seen. I shot it. E shot it. Jim the local tanked marvelously, until he almost got eaten. We were able to kill the lizard (good skinning in town!), and saved Jim’s life (“You’re lucky, buddy! I assume you’ll be passing on your share since we had to save your life?”). Feeling like we may need some help, or to simply re-think our plans, we loaded up the dinosaur, and headed to Rookroost. I guess the cart is ours, now? Elmond’s Diary
After a wonderful trip through the Bandit Kingdoms, I have found myself in Dunwich. I thought it was going to be as exciting as a pocket full of lint, but some traveling companions and locals have provided an interesting opportunity. Some locals had a map to a “lich’s lair” full of treasure. We thought about leaving them behind and getting the gold for ourselves, but decided to go with them tomorrow morning.
Well that was quite an exciting day!!! It started before the sun was up with a fire at the inn I was staying at. The fire appears to have started during a scuffle in the hallway. I missed most of the excitement. As soon as I saw the fire I grabbed my belongings and ran outside. No one I knew was significantly injured, but a few bodies were found. And that was the least interesting part of the day! We went with the locals to follow the treasure map. After some messing around and discussion of obscure languages, we decided to go in. I think some of the poor locals were vaporized. I have heard the term “cannon fodder.” I think I now have a personal reference. We decided to try a different entrance. We managed to kill a big lizard after all of the locals died. As soon as I realized there was another lizard coming I started leading the cart with the dead lizard away. I had had enough excitement for one day. I felt that if I had anymore excitement, it would be my last day.
To be continued…
Multiclass Fighter/Magic-User characters may cast spells in armor if: the spell has no somatic component, or they accept a chance of spell failure per 2nd edition rules, or they spend a non-weapon proficiency slot per spell level to learn how to cast spells in armor. Dual class characters may do the same ONLY after both classes are active. Note that this means higher level spells will probably not be castable in armor at all (because it would cost many NWPs). Exact details on spell failure will follow.
For reference: 200 cp = 20 sp = 2 ep = 1 gp = 1/5 pp Skinned dinosaur: 400gp Treasure: 400gp (100gp each)
Base xp for showing up: 100xp each Journal entries, sketches, or baked goods (Seb, Elmond): 500xp (individually) 100 xp each for treasure Seb: 100xp bonus for trapping his door Retreating from the lich's lair alive: 16,190xp Foiling the robbery at the inn: 481xp Cerotsaur: 875xp Group Total: 18,346xp (4587xp each)
Roleplaying moments and quotables
Dangling Threads of Fate
Thic Duc, Pyrcival, Ahira, and Barron have struck the Princess and done her harm Leah, Amathar, Warin, and Tiberium have so far managed to tolerate the Princess The princess has been... taken on a grand tour of the slaving operation? Barron is fascinated with the princess Warin owes the church a lot of money for his restoration spell Pyro has fallen in battle... How to invest your ill-gotten gains...