Tieflings Are People Too

   Posted by: Scott Owen   in Skamos Diary

I woke up today inside a tent. I think it’s my tent? There’s no one else here, and that looks like my stuff. I decide to get up, and step outside. I see a few other tents near a dying campfire. It’s morning. Off to the side I see a halfling tuning his lute. His hair is awesome. He glanced up at me, and it looked like he knew me. I bet we’re good friends.

Across from my tent, there’s  a gnome organizing a stack of books. One of her books looks familiar to me, and that’s as good of an ice breaker as any. I walk over, and it turned out I did recognize that book. It’s a great read, full of stories from people considered insane. It’s tricky to read though, ’cause it’s written backwards and can only be read in a mirror with two pages held up at once, with a light shining through.

I introduce myself to the gnome, whose name is Odaroe. She’s clearly already met me. Whatever, I’m used to that. I ask her what she thinks about the book, and it turns out she has no idea how to read it, so I teach her. For some reason she doesn’t seem surprised that I liked it.

I then notice a few other people around the camp. There’s a scruffy-looking ranger-fellow who’s probably half-orc. Interesting.

There’s also a magicky looking fella named Rolen, and a lady-monk (Nithral, I think?). They’re all talking about some guy named Laosin. Apparently he destroyed this Abbey we’re camping in (oh hey, we’re in an abbey!).

Guy sounds like an asshole.

There’s debate over whether we should follow his trail (the ranger seems to want vengeance for some guy named Marcon), or whether we should continue looking for a dragon cult.

Well, shit.

These people are clearly  familiar with me, though, so I guess I ‘ll just stick with them. Better waking up naked and confused with friends, than by yourself, right? Wait, am I naked? One sec.

While I was getting dressed, I heard pieces of conversation. Red Wizards, Cult of Tiamat, Morning…wood? Hehe.

The group decides to follow Laosin’s trail out of a secret tunnel. The tunnel leads to a path out of the abbey, and we ride out. Nithral really really wants to check out some old haunted Paladin fort. I am indifferent until Nithral mentions treasures. Let’s go there.

Around nightfall, we come upon a forest called The Forest of Sharp Teeth. I bet it’s nice. Everyone else seems scared, except the ranger. Dunno why night is so scary to people. Looks like I get a chance to be impressive.

I stride up to the ranger, and offer my hand. Here’s the gist of what we said:

“Hey, there…pal?”


“Cool. Cool. And I am…?”


“I know that. I was just seeing if YOU knew.” Smooooth.

“Uh huh.” (Apparently this guy is used to me asking questions like this).

“Sooo…you can get us through here?”

“Oh totes.”

“Cool. Let’s go.”

So we start walking in the forest. It’s full of super sharp brambles and thorns.

Ohh, Sharp Teeth. I get it.

Aff finds a trail of blood, and we follow it. We walk for probably 4 hours before we see some light up ahead. Near the light we can make out what appears to be a dark-skinned human and a reddish Dragonborn. Oh and there’s doggies! Three dogs sleeping! The Dragonborn looks pissed though. Dunno how you can be pissed when there’s dogs to play with.

The group seems concerned about these fellas. I just want to pet some dogs. I ask Aff what he thinks. Aff says “You’re pretty amazing at things. You proved that yesterday. I want you to go ahead of us and be our ambassador.” I reply, “Well obviously I know what you’re talking about. But I just want to make sure you saw the whole thing. Remind me…?” Aff recounts some incredible feat of flaming wall jumping or something. “Yeah that sounds like me. I’ll scout ahead.”

I expertly and importantly lead the group in creeping up to the fire. I’m sneaky as hell. Nithral is so friggin loud, though. Luckily nobody at the fire notices.

As I get closer, I notice that the human is nursing one of his dogs, who appears to be wounded. The Dragonborn looks irritated. Time to shine.

I stride up to the fire and give a cheery “Hello!”

Immediately the human grabs his great spear and levels it at me. The dragonborn conjures a fireball in his hand. This is going great.

“Whoa whoa whoa! Fellas! Buddies! I’m cool!” I assure them.

The dragonborn says, “Yoo’ve got about foive seconds t’ identify yerself, afore I explode yer nether-regions, demon.”

Okay, rude.

“I’m not a demon. I’m a Tiefling, you racist.”

The human speaks up “Tell us who you are, immediately.”

“I’m–” wait, shit. I turn around and call into the woods “Hey guys, who am I again?”

Suddenly the dragonborn and the human become even more alert. Nobody replies. “Guys?”

“Who are you talking to?”

“My friends. They’re cool. Not as cool as me.”

The dragonborn conjures another fireball. “Three seconds.” This guy, right?

Just then Rolen steps in with Tarmo. Tarmo is my best friend, I think.

Rolen tells everyone to chill, and man do I feel chill. Everyone comes out of the forest then, and starts talking. I play with the dogs. They’re so nice. They’re named Leeroy, Fritz, and Carla. Turns out these guys ran into Laosin, and Laosin hurt Carla. That bastard. He also stole the dragon-man’s staff (I honestly don’t remember his name, but screw that guy anyway). Everyone decides to go to sleep, and we’ll all look for Laosin together tomorrow.

The next day, we continue through the forest. Carla seems way better. Odaroe seems pretty happy about it. I think she did it.

We make it out of the forest and come across a…protrusion. It’s like a big stone…rod. Nithral says it’s Fort Morninglord (I’m pretty sure she’s just pronouncing Morning Wood wrong, but I’m not gonna correct her). She wants to investigate, but everyone else decides to continue following the blood trail, which leads down the road away from the Fort Bonertown. We come upon a wide open clearing, with a few boulders scattered around. There’s also some splattered deer. Seems fine. But then Odaroe swears she can hear some muffled laughter from the woods across the clearing. The dogs get restless. Their master says they can sense enemies.

I decide to go investigate. I get a little ways through the clearing, and see some dark figures. Huge figures. I get a bad feeling, and sprint right towards them. Smart, I know. I then immediately hide behind a tree. I’m so good at hiding! I peek around the tree, and see two giants standing right there. Neato! Too bad my followers are 100 feet away and I can’t warn them.

Just then, an icy arrow flies in and hits one of the giants. I decide to climb up a tree to get a better vantage point. I am super good at climbing.

I decide to check and see what kind of weapons I have in my pack. I find a bottle labeled “POISON. DO NOT EAT.” Perfect. I take out a dagger, and dip it into the bottle. No idea what kind of poison this is, or how it even works, or how to use it, but it can’t be hard to figure out right?

Time to be awesome. I run down the branch and leap off towards the closest giant, poison dagger raised above my head. I stab the giant and drag my knife halfway down his back as I fall to the ground.

I am magnificent.

The giant uproots a boulder, and I decide to hide in the crater left behind. Last place he’d look, right?

Oh, nope, it’s the first place he looks. The giant tosses the boulder directly at me. I roll safely out of the way because I am awesome. Suddenly, fire erupts nearby! None of it hits me. High five! The giants get hit though. The trees light on fire. I’m surrounded by flames. This feels right. I must’ve done this before.

However, I of course realize that fire bad. I decide to leave. I run back towards my followers, out of the forest. I shout “Giants in there!” and then go to hide. But I’m in a wide open clearing. I make myself look like a tree. I’m a great tree.

One giant lumbers out of the forest, right past me.

I’m the best tree. Other trees wish they were me.

The giant picks up another boulder and hurls it at my people. Man, I hope they know how to fight. Maybe the fire was from them. I decide to try and poison the giant again. I get out the bottle, but the stopper won’t come out. Maybe it needs gravity to help it. I lift it above my head, holding it upside down, and sure enough it comes right open! Awesome! Right into my mouth!

Ah, fuck.

Whatever. I’m going for it. I briefly consider trying to climb up to the giant’s eyes, but then I throw up and also I think I’m about to shit myself. I’m just gonna go for the back of the knee. I slash like I’ve never slashed before.

Weird, I don’t remember the blade part of the dagger looking so much like a hilt. I decide to hide again. I’m a shrub.

I just want to sleep. As I’m laying here, I see a giant club come swinging down at me.

“Come on, man.” I mutter as I roll easily out of the way. The club misses by inches before crashing down again.

“Dude, seriously.” I roll the other way. Miss again.

Fire erupts behind me. It feels nice. As I hear a giant collapse, I decide it’s time to go to sleep.


Books ablaze, Fire in the library!

   Posted by: Tyler Merry   in Skamos Diary

I am in a library, there is a massive fire in front of me… the searing heat hits my horns, and I can feel my tail begin to sweat… wait… what the fuck? Looking down I see I’m some sort of demon-man, or man-demon. A highly interesting development. I will have to deal with the existential crisis later, however — since right now I’m in a library full of books and fire, fucking great place to awaken.


I’m standing next to a lady in a long robe who doesn’t seem to be fighting me. She seems familiar to me. Maybe she is a librarian? Do I hang out with librarians?


Through the flames I see two men fighting: one dressed in robes, the other in armor. The one in armor seems to be attacking the robed monk. They too seem familiar. A strong wind blows across my scaly face… WAIT. “Why is there wind inside a library?” I peek around a massive column of books. WHOOSH, something whizzes between my horns — and then I see it, a massive tornado-human creature spinning wildly in front of me. I do the math: fire, fuel, wind =  this place is burning to the ground in another hot minute.


Suddenly a small dreadlocked creature sprints at the massive vortex of air and books that stands at least six times her size. Once at its base she seems to explode, blasting her into a set of bookshelves and the tornado-human through several bookcases toward the fire. “Yup, I’m outta here,” I murmur to myself.


As I sprint toward the stairs I see her unearthing herself from the small mountain of books she knocked over in the explosion. For someone so small, she really packs a punch.


As I arrive at the top of the stairs I spot the robed fighter knocking down the armored man as the librarian sprints after him. Maybe he has some overdue books? I also check in on the little one, who is now helping two others, a halfling and a half-orc, to climb out of the books she knocked over. As I investigate the area further I see an arrow fly at one of them from across the library.


I sprint to the highest point I can, the bell tower. From there I can see the archer, as well as the people from the books, now returning fire. But I can’t now see the man-nado — maybe the small one’s attack killed it? I look through my bag and am rather overjoyed to find a crossbow, so I pull it out and align the sights on the figure of the archer. Just as I find the trigger, a huge explosion under me rocks the whole structure.


Through the smoke-choked haze I can see the torna-human has hit the fire and seems to have doubled in size. The books he is throwing rip through the solid wood floor I am standing on like arrows through rice paper. Other than flying books, I can’t really see anything. Standing on this platform any longer will surely result in me being dropped on the ever-growing air beast, and that doesn’t seem an enjoyable prospect.


I start to wonder on my options, which seem pretty sadly limited, only being able to see a foot in front of me. But thats when it hits me — or rather, that’s when I hit *it*, with my head, rather violently. In other words, I’ve found the library’s massive bell. It’s large enough that if I can drop it on top of the wind monster, it may slow it till I can figure out where I am and what I am doing here. An option? I’ve got nothing better. Maybe I’m an idiot? How should I know.


I climb and start undoing its mountings, watching the beast continue to grow. I also see the people who were trapped under the books have made it out via the front door. Maybe I should follow their lead?


As I crawl out a window I feel the room get hotter as the mega-man-nado starts consuming yet more books, wood and fear, growing larger and larger by the second. As soon as I’m outside I sprint away from the bell tower and soon see a small wall just outside my jumping range. As I leap toward it, the building behind me explodes propelling me to land crouched on the wall in front of me, my tail coiling around my feet. Wow, I could get used to being me, with sweet moves like that. Just before breaking into my victory dance (or at least I assume it’s my victory dance, as it makes me feel uniquely awesome), I spot the archer from earlier and fire an arrow at his startled face. Too bad it only hits him in the arm… to be fair, his arm was probably startled too. The sorry people whose lives I just saved round the corner and stand facing me.


“DID YOU GUYS SEE THAT FUCKING MOVE!!!!” I yell out to them, continuing  to do my victory dance. Holy shit this tail really makes my dance moves look AWESOME.


With an extremely unimpressed attitude, they muscle out a collective “yeah.” I shrug. I must do this kind of awesome stuff all the time.


I learn their names are Aff (the half-orc), Tarmo (the halfling), Odaroe (the dreadlocked gnome), and Trainer Mendain (a human who lives here at the monastery). As Tarmo tells me his name I’m conscious that he’s likely told me his name several times before, and I’m also tremendously admiring of his rather rocking reverse mohawk. I think to ask him who his stylist is, but the mood doesn’t seem quite right so I hold off.


As Aff prepares to question the currently unconscious archer, who they’ve now restrained upon the lawn, the other three make their way to the far corner of the library. Odaroe turns briefly into a cat (I feel oddly unsurprised) and climbs the remains of the structure to peer into one room in particular. It seems they are looking for someone.  Odaroe tells the group that she couldn’t see a body amidst the wreckage of the room, and Trainer Mendain begins to sob as she remorsefully explains something about an abbot. Tarmo wraps an arm around her heaving shoulders —  they must know each other. We also must have known this abbot and it seems like he must have been a decent guy,  because it really seems to hit the group hard. As we take inventory of the party, we realize that we are short at least three people. Rolen, the fighter from Green Nest I saw battling the monk, and Nithral, the monk, are missing, seemingly swallowed by the library and the fire-nado. A towns member also brings up someone else called Marcon and everybody looks sad about that too. I didn’t see it happen, but apparently someone saw him go down. Whatever — I find I don’t grieve the loss of too many friends, as I don’t usually remember them anyway.


Everyone’s grumpy mood is interrupted when the archer starts to stir, coming out of his unconsciousness. Aff immediately starts to tie him up quite aggressively, and starts yelling about some ancient order, or maybe a mission, frankly I start to zone out.


History or planning doesn’t really matter to me, as I lose my memories nearly every couple of hours. I remember being able to remember when I was younger, but something happened and I lost all of the things everyone else takes for granted.


As I hear Aff continuing to berate the archer, however, I start to remember something from my past. I start to reconstruct a scene from my memory with bits of grass and branches I am finding nearby. There is a city, with houses, little by little things are coming back. I am working on a little grass figure to to represent me when Aff starts yelling at me. I fumble with my words and then feel him push me into my memory diorama. As he pushes me through my grass-city, a letter falls out of my cloak. The letter says “Aff” on the front and is sealed. So I figure what the hell, and hand it to him. His response isn’t exactly what I expected. He explodes in a blind rage on the archer.


Just then I see Rolen and Nithral arise from a well. Or at least I think it’s them — I am so bad with names and faces. Nithral, the one I thought was the librarian, walks over to Trainer Mendain, and they start catching each other up on their escape and their version of events. Turns out they had been crawling through the tunnels, Rolen carrying the badly wounded Nithral, chasing after the robed monk from inside the library. I learn this monk was a traitor, turning on his whole monastery, casting malicious spells and poisoning most of the monastery’s inhabitants and then quite literally riding off into the sunset. Sounds like a real douche.


As I look back to check on the archer’s situation, Aff is in full-blown torcher mode as he continues to interrogate the prisoner, who apparently isn’t cracking. I notice Rolen — who hadn’t said a word yet — putting an arm on Aff’s shoulder. In a low, foreboding, semi-demonic and don’t-fucking-say-no-to-me voice he says, “Aff, I like you, but you lack…” — his stony eyes turn toward the archer — “… elegance.” It’s all pretty intense; I would have told them everything I remembered, hehe! “See this guy?” he says to the archer, and with a snap of his fingers a smokey minion appears on Rolen’s shoulder. “I am going to have him climb up your nose, and hang out in your lungs, but he gets claustrophobic… so…” *SPLAT*, and Rolen’s interrogation is interrupted by the prisoner’s spit landing squarely between his eyes.


“Fuck it, give him to the monastery,” Rolen states defeatedly.


With a better understanding of what we are up against, Nithral tries to recruit some of the few surviving members of the monastery to join us on our journey and help us in our pursuit of the traitor monk. Sadly, none will follow. They do help us out with some gear, but as we are going through the distribution of everything it all gets a little blurry… something about a tuning fork for Tarmo…



Campaign Notes: Grey Roads Lead to Ghosts 8.12.10

   Posted by: Blackbird   in Wardlands

When we left the party in the last encounter they had captured a dangerous cleric of Norgorber put him into the back of a newly acrquired wagon and begun to make their way back to the road.

The route back proved perilous. First the group heard chopping ahead and brought the wagon up to a dangerous speed.  They flew past a small group of men chopping at trees by the road who could have been preparing an ambush.  After leaving those men in the dust they brought the wagons back down to a slower pace.  Night had fallen over the group and everyone was exhausted.  Nibil and Abdul remained in the back of the wagon keeping close watch over the bound and gagged cleric while Jamalamin and Bale kept watch up front.

The group rode on through the night and when they were but a few miles from town encountered men on horseback on the road with no light.  Sensing an ambush Jamalamin whipped the reins and tried to ride down the men on horseback but the horses spooked and jack-knifed the wagon by the side of the road.  One of the riders through a bag into the back of the wagon while two others raced up from hiding places in the trees.  The bag held a couple of angry captive snakes who used their new found freedom to try and strike at those in the wagon.  Bale ruined one of the men on horseback with his longsword but when he faced the second mounted attacker his courage waned in the sight of the man’s armored warhorse.

In the wagon Nibil managed to kill one of the snakes before one of the men tried to yank him out of the wagon.  Rystime had exhausted his magical power and was forced to defend himself with his dagger.  This worked out badly for Rystime who was stabbed through the gut with a short sword and collapsed into unconsciousness.  Abdul killed the second snake but not before it had a chance to strike the bound cleric twice.  Abdul finished off the thief that Rystime was fighting while Jamalamin fired arrows at the rider mounted on the warhorse striking him once in the side.   Nibil managed to keep the thief that was attacking him at bay and put him down.

Bale wrestled down his fear and then struck home against the mounted rider and managed to secure his horse.  With the enemies down Abdul attended to Rystime’s wounds but unfortunately was unable to save the cleric who had died from the venom.  They salvaged the weapons and armor from their foes and brought themselves the rest of the way back to town.

Their arrival back into town was met with enthusiasm by Barah who did not expect them back so soon.  Nibil dropped off a bunch of armor at the local blacksmith who complained about getting such a surplus from them and offered him a much lower rate which he accepted.  Bale took his new warhorse to the livery where it attempted to relive a few stablehands of their limbs.  It quickly earned itself a name “Smiley” Jamalamin and Bale spent some time trying to break the horse and saddle and mount it.

Barah rewarded each of those who came back with a gift salvaged from his personal stores.  Bale received three doses of red potion each marked with a bull’s head on the cork, Jamalamin received a fine bowstring for his bow, Nibil received the wizards old cauldron bottom which had been remade into a stout shield, with a place in the center for the symbol of Sarenre.  Bicklebrick was given an alchemist’s instrument which could be used to mark upon rocks and determine if they were Ortan-Rul the mineral that he seeks, Abdul was given a cloudy sphere with 8 compartments on it.  Each compartment can release a Gust of Wind but when all 8 compartments have been opened the item is exhausted.  Rystime receives a wand with 20 charges of obscuring mist, but his latest brush with death is too much for him so he decides to make his way East again and retire from this lethal life of adventuring (he takes his wand with him).  Efforts have been made to secure additional cures for those afflicted by the warerat curse.

Together with Barah the group poured over the parchment that they found in the thieves wagon and solved the code that it was written in.  The full text of the paper reads:

Gray Roads lead to ghosts
Trust no spirit but follow their heart to the grunting field
Track the sun until water runs black then grey
Cross the invisible bridge.
Black foots will guide you to greenwater keep.

Convinced that the dead cleric was not the sole person behind the attack on his shop Barah asks the party if they would follow the directions listed on the parchment and discover who is behind the attacks.  He has his own suspicions but needs to travel to Eddyton to confirm them.  He asks that the party track down who is behind the attacks and meet back up with him in Eddyton with what they uncover.

Concerned that the map could lead the group into the Reaching Marshes he offers to find a guide who knows the area.  Galen is a gruff and plain spoken resident of West Ward who hunts by trade.  He seems to have a fair bit of experience hunting and has survived a few excursions into the marshes.  Barah also suggests that they may seek out a group of rangers that live outside the marsh.  He marks a place on their map where they can begin to look for signs as to how to get there.  The group agrees to hire Galen and given the warnings of Ghosts and spirits they seek advice at the local temple.  Abdul and Nibil spend a couple of days researching through the temple’s modest archives and conclude that spirits can only be driven out through positive energy, consecrating the land that they inhabit and striking them with weapons embodied with magical or spiritual power.

The senior acolyte serving as the cleric is willing to bless a few kegs of water for them and makes a secret offer to Nibil.  The church has in it’s possession an artifact which was brought here by the senior cleric.  The item is a fragment of a sword not much bigger than a dagger which is said to have been sundered by Sarenre herself, he knows that it is blessed with magical powers and offers it’s use to Nibil provided that he ensures that it does not fall into the hands of an enemy.  Given the trials of the past week Nibil is unsure if he can make that commitment and chooses to leave it with the temple.

The group provisions themselves with a weeks worth of food and heads out.  The first day they encounter few people on the road but most seem to be traders with heavy slow wagons which they easily outpace.  They make camp at Bale’s family house and enjoy a meal cooked by his parents.

The second day they encounter a burned pair of wagons and with a little investigation find the bodies of 12 people just off the road.  Nibil and Abdul take time to bury the dead and as a result end up camping not far from the site.  A group of loggers meetup with them on the road transporting a load of heartwood to Jacob’s Bench.  They agree to travel together for a bit and split watches.  The loggers are mostly young boys half drunk on sap but they do appear fearless.  The wagon master of the group is a tough old lumberjack who’s missing his right hand from a logging accident.

The group travel together on the third day and make little progress rains fall through most of the day and the party ends up pushing wagons loaded with logs through the cold muddy bogged down road.  The forth day brings thick fog, but the group travels along the eastern edge of the Reaching marshes and passes the section that Galen calls “the haunted wood” without any drama.  Nibil spends time walking the edge of the wood and finds an unmolested corpse of a bear, a small piece of shiny hammered tin on a string and the utter absence of anything living in the area.

Keen to meet up with others of his trade Jamalamin suggests that they meet with the local rangers and see what they know about spirits in the woods.  He finds the ranger signs easily enough although the rest of the party is certain he’s leading them on a wild goose chase until they crest the top of a hill and see a small serene stone and log cabin located in a clearing near a pine grove.

They ride down the the clearing and find no rangers although a fully saddled horse is grazing in the field.  Concerened Jamalamin begins to search the property and find the bodies of 2 dead rangers each killed by a heavy military crossbow.  One appears to have been killed instantly while the other died with 2 bolts in him.

The cabin appears untouched with half chopped vegtables on the counter.  A writing desk is absent of any paper but otherwise appears undisturbed.  There are three beds made up and a total of 4 bunks available.  Nibil and Abdul head back to the loggers and tell them that it’s unsafe here and that they would be wise to relocate to the ranger’s cabin.  The news of the ranger’s death distrubs them greatly and the whole large group sleep like sardines in the cabin at night with 3 people on watch at all times.

Dawn arrives and the party begins to discuss what they need to do next.


Campaign Notes: Traps in the Trees 7.22.10

   Posted by: Blackbird   in Wardlands

After wrapping up a couple of details in town the freshly outfitted party tracks the thieves to their meeting place.  What they find there nearly ruins them all.

Here’s an audio log of the night:  http://www.blackbirddreams.com/recordings/7.22.2010.mp3


Campaign Notes: Wreckless Behavior – 7.8.10

   Posted by: Blackbird   in Wardlands

When we last left off Bale was about to be crushed by a cart which smashed into the front window of the wizard Barah’s shop.

The windowed wall of the shop seems to explode inward as the floor bucks wildly beneath your feet. Your ears are filled with the sound of breaking glass, cracking wood and collapsing furniture. The shop is filled with choking dust and it takes a second or two to begin to clear. You can hear the ceiling above you groan in protest at the sudden lack of support. From the back of the shop you hear a second crash, but not as loud as the first, then the curtain is thrown back and a young man dressed in black with a bandana pulled over his face reaches back and throws a flaming jar at a ruined bookcase.

Bale gets knocked prone as thieves begin to pour in from the back entrance into the shop, they hurl pots of alchemist’s fire at a nearby bookcase that Abdul is standing behind.  Although surprised, Barah is able to dispatch one with a powerful magic missile spell but quickly the thieves rush in and lay hands on his spell book.

Jamalamin and Rystime both see the crash from up the street, Jamalamin runs down to help while shouting at Rystime, “Go get the town guard!”  Rystime head off to collect the local soliders while Jamalamin charges down the steeply sloped cobblestone street toward the crumpled house which now has smoke billowing out of it.

Abdul calls upon the power of his deity who quenches the flames which are seeping through the bookcase and onto his robes while Bicklebrick manages to move one of the bookcases a bit providing a clear exit while shouting “get out of there man this whole place could go up in an instant.”  Nibil moves up and manages a solid slash against one of the thieves with his scimitar and the thief responds with smashing a jar of alchemist’s fire against his face.  Nibil is covered in flame which burns atop his armor and not helping his appearance any.  The thief is also hit by the spray of flame and starts putting out the flames while handing off the book to an adjacent thief.

Bale gets up and starts shouldering his way towards the front lines as Barah focuses his attention on another thief and shouts something arcane that seems like it carries an almost humorous tone.  The thief he was focused on laughs out loud like he got the joke, but then his eyes take on a look of horror as he keeps laughing while falling to the floor. He rolls around amongst the small pools of fire, still laughing uncontrollably.

Nibil tries to put himself out but has no success and begins to smell the sickly sweet smell of cooking dwarf as his armor continues to heat up. Abdul steps out around the burning bookcases and shouts through the smoke and flame “Zeypherion commands you to Give the dwarf the book!” The thief blinks heavily once and then passes it to Nibil who drops his sword so he can grab the book.  One of the thieves lunges for the book and misses as it passes to the dwarf’s smoking gloves.

Nibil sees this opportunity and quickly turns and ducks through the rising flames (still on fire himself) and runs towards the front door he deftly beats the flames out with the heavy tome.  Once the flames are out the holy symbols etched into his armor still glow red with the heat from the flames meanwhile his face is blackened from smoke.

Jamalamin arrives at the scene and crawls through the wreckage in the window to figure out what’s going on he looks around and asks “What all is going on in here?!?”  The rest of the party shouts out “Theives! Fire!”  Jamalamin hesitates for a second before continuing inward as he hears creaking from above and tiles on the roof coming off.

Bicklebrick heads outside and the others hear him shout “Hey the fire birgade is here!  Oh wait…they brought bows though….Something’s going bad out here!”  A couple of arrows sprout at his feet.  Abdul tries to delay the theives by creating a storm burst in their direction but misses.

The thieves redouble their efforts and lob a few more pots of fire, one at Bale whose simple cotton clothes catch immediately, another thief tosses another pot at Barah and misses creating an explosion of flame behind him which catches Abdul’s robes on fire.  Cinders and ashes are swirling about the ruins of the shop while the support beams continue to hiss and groan.  The last remaining thief throws another jar of alchemist’s fire at Bale and hits him dead on in the chest bathing him completely in fire.  In a blind panic Bale runs screaming out of the shop, he gets a quick look at Bicklebrick aiming at some unknown assailants on the roof before blacking out in the street.

Barah shouts again at one of the thieves who collapses in uncontrollable laughter.  He falls to his knees and comes up with his gloves covered in alchemist’s fire and laughs at them with a look of revulsion and terror on his face.

Nibil turtles up behind his shield and armor to defend the book.  Jamalamin decides that the shop is done for and head back out through the wreckage.  He spies 3 thieves on the smoking roof shooting down at Bicklebrick and pulls of a snap shot at one which narrowly misses. With the thief distracted Bicklebrick manages to put an arrow in one of the thief’s thigh.

Inside, Abdul takes note of his friend running out the door and summons the power of Zepherion which sends a cleansing blast of cool air through the shop healing the party a bit.  Seeing the party get restored makes the theives act rashly, they gang up on Nibil and attempt to disarm him while standing in the flames. Barah, focused on retrieving his tome demands it from Nibil and runs through the flames to the back entrace after Nibil hands it over. Nibil follows, planting himself in the doorway as a final thief tries to get around him to escape but he holds his ground and the shop crashes around him as the rest of the PCs run out the front.

The theives on the roof flee as the roof begins to cave in and Jamalamin runs around the side alley to try and head them off.  Out back, Nibil emerges from the wreckage covered in soot, and spies a glimmer of steel in the wreckage, reaching down he finds his scimitar surprisingly cool to the touch.  He joins Barah in the back of the shop clutching his book.  Barah offers his express thanks but still looks mournfully at the wreckage that was his home.  Jamalamin rounds a corner out back and sees a large trash pile but no signs of the thieves.  There is a narrow tight pathway through the trash pile and through that he can make out the shapes of Barah and Nibil walking away but sees no signs of the thieves.  Carefully and quietly he climbs up the side of the trash pile being exceptionally silent.

He reaches the top of the trash pile and spies two thieves below looking to ambush whoever comes through the path while Barah and Nibil walk in the opposite direction.  One of the thieves makes a bit of noise and alerts them, and Nibil and Barah square off to face down these final two opponents.  As Nibil charges at one Jamalamin jumps down from his vantage point and sheathes his blade between the collarbones of the arsonist.

The final thief tries to escape but gets bashed in the face by Nibil and falls to the ground disabled but conscious.  The town guard and fire brigade has arrived and a scarred, salty captain who seems very cross with Barah thinking he’s blown up his own shop but with a captured thief he changes his attitude quickly.  He talks of putting the thief up in a crow’s cage to die a miserable death unless the thief cooperates in which case he’ll get a merciful end.  The thief spits up a bit of blood and sneers at him then looks at Nibil and Jamalamin and says “You know what yeah I’ll tell you where we was headed with that book.  Down the grey road ’bout 12 miles, there’s an old burned oak that ain’t got no business being in a pine grove, turn off there to the Southeast.  That where we were taking it, you go there, tell those that were waiting for us why we’re late.”  As to any questions about who is waiting there they get no answers and the captain motions to a guard who kills the thief quickly.

Barah expresses his thanks to the rest of the group and tells them “you are a fine investment, I must say.”  He instructs them to follow him to the Dancing Dove Inn located somewhat close to the temple in a nicer part of town.  There he goes inside and orders rooms for each of them, plus a hot bath and full meal.  Bale for one has never known such decadence and eagerly soaks it up while Nibil returns the potion that was given to him earlier that day to the temple since he has been cured of his infection.  Abdul does what he can for the rest of the party’s wounds and while everyone looks pretty beaten up or covered in raw reddened marks no one looks too worse for wear.

After a near comatose sleep the party wakes and meets with Barah in a corner suite room.  In the room is a large chest that looks exactly like the miniaturized example used on his spellbook as a bookmark token.  He hands them a pillowcase sized sack and tells them “I’ve known you less than a day but you’ve already helped me far beyond that of many others I’ve known for years.  I’m eliminating your debt and to show my thanks I want to give you this.”  He lifts a pillowcase sized sack half full of something heavy and puts it on the table.  Inside there are gold coins.  Nibil looks at the sack forlornly and tells Barah that he’d much rather the wizard use his share of the money to heal the sick infected people who were outside the gate.  Abdul speaks up and says that his share should go to the same thing.  Barah agrees to hire porters and hunters to gather materials for additional cures and will perform the cures at the cost of the ingredients alone.  Confronted with riches beyond his dreams Bale is heartboken to see Barah reach into the sack and remove a dozen handfuls of coins before handing it back.  There’s enough remaining so that each person has 400gp added to their purse.

Barah sits them all down and asks another task of them, he needs them to discover who orchestrated this robbery.  He wants them to follow the lead offered by the thief even through it may well lead to a trap.  He plans to stay here in town and figure out how the town guard did not spot the thieves entering town or scaling the walls.  The party spends a bit of that morning resupplying themselves.

DM’s Note: This encounter was meant for the thieves to end up with the book in their hands, but that well placed command spell changed the whole encounter around.  I had a lot of fun with this encounter and thought the PCs played the senario out really well.  Rather than tracking the thieves down in the night now they will have to face a waiting trap as the thieves are overdue and their contact will suspect that something has gone wrong.  All in all a great game and I’m looking forward to the next one.


Nibil the Beardless’ Background

   Posted by: John   in Wardlands

Caution may contain some character spoilers, feel free to read it but try to avoid metagaming. Read the rest of this entry »

Jamalamin’s Background

   Posted by: Blackbird   in Wardlands

Caution may contain some character spoilers, feel free to read it but try to avoid metagaming. Read the rest of this entry »


Bicklebrick’s Background

   Posted by: Blackbird   in Wardlands

Caution may contain some character spoilers, feel free to read it but try to avoid metagaming. Read the rest of this entry »


Campaign Notes: Coin for a Cure – 6.21.2010

   Posted by: Blackbird   in Wardlands

5 riders are bearing down on the PCs when we started this session. Three of the rat creatues lay dead on the field while the Merris clan see to the children and try and calm them down a bit. Jamalamin spots a bit of gold on one of the beasts and looks closer to investigate while Abdul is more interested in the maggots and infection that the creatures seem to have.

As the riders pull up it’s clear that these are not men but rather boys the oldest can’t be more than 16, their armor fits loosely and while the youngest looks to be about 14 they have at least some sense of authority. The boys talk in a slow and deep slavic accent and explain that they do not know for sure what creatures these are they do know that those bitten quickly begin to become mad. They attack people at random and they too can spread the disease. Most of the attacks that they have heard of have been deeper in the wilds. This is the largest attack that they know of to date. Nibil asks if there is a cleric or healer in the city. The boys reply that there is a junior priest but he has been unable to provide a lasting cure for the disease. There is also another man named Barah in the city but they seem to have some fear of him and claim that his services are wildly expensive. They also warn that those at the gate will not allow any that are bitten into the city for fear of spreading the infection. After ensuring that the PCs do not need any assistance they ride off to secure other camps.

After the boys leave Jamalamin brings over a stretched out ring and shows it to the group. It is a simple wedding band but bent and stretched well beyond it’s ordinal size. A warped inscription on the inside reads “Forever: Rose.” Looking at the other two creatures there are scraps of clothing remaining on the bodies; a ripped and stretched out shirt collar rings one of the beast’s neck and the other has the remains of the upper part of a leather boot around it’s ankle.

None of the PCs have experience with this disease but they feel fairly certain that the disease somehow transforms men into beasts. In hopes of getting into the gate and trying to find some cure Abdul calls upon the power of his god to heal his comrades but while the wounds heal over a large red soreness remains ring in a black bruise.

The rest of the night passes without incident. On the following day Dun pays the PCs the promised 15 gp and thanks them for their work. You sense that he is a little nervous around the PCs now especially Abdul and Nibil. The group heads towards the gate as one. Near the gate there is a group of at least 10 people injured from the attacks last night. Abdul channels power from his god and does his best to heal those in the immediate area, preaching and praying and drawing a fair bit of attention to himself. As the wounds of those around him begin to close up and scab over, several of the commoners press coins into his hands and pockets as a means of giving thanks.

One of the commoners is a young farm hand, named Bale, he’s muscled like an ox. He too was injured in the fighting the previous night and is also infected. He’s come to the town in search of work to bring money back to his parent’s farm. Bale has a longsword and seems like he knows how to use it. Worried that the guards will spot his infection he has smeared mud over the wound to try disguise it.

Three guards all fairly young watch the gate collecting taxes from those that try and pass. Dun pays some heavy taxes to enter into the city and Jamalamin and Rystime also don’t have any trouble. Bicklebrick seems to get charged a bit extra for being a dwarf. Frustrated by this he manages an attack on the lead guard but disguises it as a bit of a drunken stumble. His attack is overly effective and he deals significant damage to the guard’s ear. Other guards are quick to draw their steel but the lead guard is convinced it was an accident. Bicklebrick and another guard exchange words and vow to settle the issue at the Cross Cut Inn.

Abdul is up next and manages to convince the guard that he can help him with his new injury in exchange for not having to pay a tax to enter the city. While he works on healing the guard Nibil comes up next. He announces that he’s been bitten and gets denied entry. He talks with the guard for a bit trying to use diplomacy to convince the young guardsman that it is the humanitarian thing to do to let him and the other sick people into the city. After a bit of discussion he still gets denied, and moves over to provide what comfort he can to the other sick people.

Bicklebrick heads to the Cross Cut Inn and buys half a gallon of the local brew called “The Sap” he tells Rystime and Jamalamin to wait for him there, and that he’ll be back when the others are in the city.

Bale is the last to try, Abdul is trying to convince the guards that him and his companions should be allowed into the city. As Abdul argues, Nibil attends the sick and then Bicklebrick returns with a jug of the local brew called sap. With all of this going on at the gate the lead guard takes Abdul aside and tells him that they should go to the bottom of Soapstone Way and that they need to wait for the guards who will check in to make sure that they are still there at the end of the day.

Allowed into the city Abdul, Nibil, Bicklebrick and Bale think of heading to soapstone way but Nibil and Abdul convince the rest of the group to head to the temple.

The city is a muddy maze of wooden buildings but the steeple of the temple is pretty visible and it does not take long to get to the temple. There they find a flustered junior priest who recognizes them as members of the church. He bids them inside and is surprised to find out that they have been allowed entry into the city with their infection. He has a fair bit of knowledge about the infections. He tells the group that the infection is in fact magical he fears that it is some form of corrupted lycanthropy. Most cases of lycanthropy leave the host with most of the their faculties intact, this form does not and the host quickly begins to go mad. He has never seen a man transform but given the corpses that some of the foresters and milita have brought back that seems to be the only explanation. Unfortunately, he does not have a way of curing the disease, the priest who built the temple knew how to cure nearly any disease but he left with most of the town milita and the mayor when they joined the army to hold off the orc tribes in the west.

He’s found that simple mixtures of feverfew and queen’s lace seem to strengthen the mind for a short period which can buy a bit more time for the infected but nothing seems to provide more than a week or two of clarity before the mind surrenders to madness. He suggests that Barah a wizard who lives at the bottom of soapstone way may be able to provide help but his services are very costly and claims that the man is dangerous. He slew several men who accused him of dark magic. Before leaving the priest gives them 2 doses of the resistance potion and prays for them.

The four of them then head to Soapstone Way. The road starts near the top of a hill and descends steeply towards the city wall at the bottom of the hill. At the top of the hill the Cross Cut Inn sits as well as a few other merchants. Laundries seem to line the road on the downhill slope which provides a natural avenue for drainage. At the bottom of the hill in the shadow of the town wall is a 2 story house with a dirty bay window. The entire building seems to not have a single right angle anywhere in it’s construction. It appears to be cobbled together from scrap wood. The man who answers the door tells him his name is Barah Cloudcaller.

Barah stands about 5’8″ and could be between the ages of 35 and 50, with a slender build and a somewhat weathered appearance.  He is wearing a cream woolen sweater with multiple holes and singe marks on it and wollen trousers reinforced with leather patches.  His clothes and skin are dirty, he looks far more like a blacksmith than a wizard.  A long leather coat with multiple pockets hangs from a coat rack behind the counter and a wide brimmed oiled leather hat lays on the counter top as if to try and make some claim that this man does in fact know something about magic.

The shop has a look of a horder’s warren, bookshelves are arranged in no sensible manner and bits of paper, seem crammed into nearly every available space. An arcane collection of beakers, glass, and alchemy ingredients are arranged on the countertop next to a large and heavy tome.

Barah appears direct and more than a little shrewd. He asks the PCs what their skills are he seems mostly satisfied by their skill sets and tells them that he expects 600 gold per cure but he does have enough supplies available for the three cures if they will agree to serve him until the debt is paid.  Bale seems most wrought by this but agrees along with the others. Bicklebrick is not injured but asks Barah about a mineral and Barah tells him that if he too will serve him he will provide him with information about that specific mineral. It takes a few hours for Barah to brew up the concotions meanwhile the group is milling around the shop trying to make sense of Barah’s insane filing scheme and identify various potions around the shop. When the cures are finally ready Nibil, Abdul and Bale all down them.

The cure tastes both bitter and hot and seems to almost crawl down your throat of it’s own accord burning out corruption as it goes.  After feeling subsides you feel rejuvenated and more alert than you were a few moments before.

Meanwhile: Jamalamin and Rystime have been in the Cross Cut inn and managed to find a nice roasted leg of goat, and a bit of ale while waiting for their companions. While seated near a window they notice a pair of young men loading a cart with rocks and rubble. Something about it seems a bit odd and Rystime goes outside to investigate. Jamalamin watches from inside the inn as the two of them talk before seeing a third man sneak up behind Rystime. Jamalamin gets up to intervene and starts to head to the door before being headed off by a serving wench demanding payment. Rystime gets cold cocked from behind and stunned while the other men shove the cart hard launching it down the hill. They then take off into the maze of alleyways, quickly disappearing. Jamalamin helps up Rystime as the cart crashes into a 2 story house with a dirty bay window and the two of them take off down the hill to see if they can help.

In Barah’s shop the cart explodes through the bay window just about where Bale was standing.

The windowed wall of the shop seems to explode inward as the floor bucks wildly beneath your feet. Your ears are filled with the sound of break glass, cracking wood and collapsing furniture. The shop is filled with choking dust and it takes a second or two to begin to clear. You can hear ceiling above you groan in protest at the sudden lack of support. From the back of the shop you hear a second crash, but not as loud as the first, then the curtain is thrown back and a young man dressed in black with a bandana pulled over his face reaches back and throws a flaming jar at a ruined bookcase.


Campaign Notes: Welcome to the Wardlands – 6.9.2010

   Posted by: Blackbird   in Wardlands

The PCs have been traveling for more than 3 weeks with the Merris clan, a pair of familes bringing textile materials to the frontier for sale and returning with goods for the cities to the east.  The Merris clan is made up of the following people:

Dun Merris – He’s the wagonmaster, father and head of the outfit, he has 5 children with him.  Dun is a suprisingly descent man, fair, honest and makes for a solid travel companion.  Dun lost most of his hair after he lost his wife 3 years past.  He is garbed in simple but well cut clothes that seem like they’ve seen many miles on the road.
Nel Colt – Nel is Dun’s oldest daughter, she has stringy brown hair and seems to constantly teeter on exhaustion.  She has two children, Derra and Maraih, and is married to Mal Colt.  She is a quiet woman and keeps to herself and her children for the most part, the constant toil of traveling, and herding her children seem to wear on her.
Mal Colt – Mal is Nel’s husband he’s older than her and in his late 30s, Mal has a strong jaw and the lean look of a man who’s known hunger before.  His brownish red hair is kept fairly short and is rarely styled.  He has an easy smile but tired green eyes.  A scar starts just below his left ear and gets larger before disspearing under his collar.  He walks with a bit of a limp but has strong arms and shoulders. Mal often has a distant, far-away look in his eyes and you’ve heard that he spent time as an archer in the army.  He has a long bow and quiver over his shoulder most often and seems a capable hunter.  He’s apprenticing to learn the textile business from Dun but seems to enjoy life on the frontier more than in the city.
Derra Colt – Derra is one of Nel and Mal’s daughters.  She’s 8 years old and has a strangely blank expression for a child her age.  She rarely laughs or cires.  She often wanders off and twice she’s been saved by Mal from a wild animal.  Her parents worry that she may be simple but she knows her name and will reluctantly give answers when asked.
Mariah Colt – Mariah is Mal and Nel’s younger daughter and an opposite in every way from her older sister Derra.  She laughs, runs, cries and is in every way a typical 5 year old.  She is often seen playing with a few simple toys in the dirt or climbing around on wagons when the adults aren’t looking.
Mennius Merris – Mennius is Dun’s oldest son at 22.  Mennius is often sick with a rough cough but his sharp mind and solid head for numbers has paired well with Dun’s salesmanship.  Mennius rides in Dun’s cart most of the day and emerges only to inspect materials or for meals around the evening campfire.  He does not seem very personable but among others of high intellect he can be quite engaging.
Hal Merris – Middle Son Hal is Dun’s middle child at 15,  Hal Merris has a wide lantern head with reddish hair and freckles that form on the back of his neck.  His eyes and mouth appear a bit too small for his heavy build, dispite his tall and thick frame he’s a nice quiet kid who likes splitting wood, tending horses and fixing broken goods.
Emon Merris – Emon is Dun’s youngest child, and twin his sister Ester.  He’s a young excitable child and loves playing with his cousin Mariah.
Ester Merris – Ester is Dun’s youngest daughter and twin to her brother Emon.  She’s quiet and spends much time with her oldest brother Mennius in the wagon.  The two of them have a very close bond.
The PCs have joined the group for a variety of reasons, Abdul the cleric (Drake) has joined up with them and often discusses the price and quality of materials from his far away homeland.  Mennius and him have spent many hours together debating the prices of goods and what trade routes would have the greatest return.  Others like the salty ranger Jamalamin Bushbeater (John M) and the shaved dwarf paladin Nibil the Beardless (John K) have joined up as guards protecting the caravan while trying to get to a part of the Wardlands that they both have an interest in.  Despite some misgivings by Mal and Nel Dun agreed to allow Rystime Alehame a Wizard (Nick) to ride with them with hopes that his intellect could she some light on which roads in the Wardlands might yield up the most profit. Bicklebrick the dwarf rogue (Lars) joined the group with his mule Snot.  Dun seems to have more than a little interest in Dwarven culture and is eager to try and create some sort of trading arragement with the barberic dwarf clans that live in the Grey Mountains.

After 3 weeks of slow plodding travel the group has come to the outskirts of the town of West Ward.  It is 3 weeks after the fall harvest, the mornings make dragons out of men with their smoky breath creating clouds about their faces and the nights are growing ever more cold.  The PCs are in the Wardlands a series of rough hills, low marshes and thick woods that jut up against the Grey Mountains in the West and fade into the expanse of plains to the east which stretch to the sea.  The Wardlands are the frontier, shallow wagon tracks connect pinpricks of light and civilization to one another and the nights are dark and full of terrors.  Ever since the border wars to the south ended 2 summers ago more armed men have walked the roads looking for coin and weakness in their fellow travelers.  The residents of the few established towns view those outside their walls with skepticism and distrust.

One of those towns has just come into view.  The town of West Ward looks shows it’s roots easily.  The town started as a logging camp and now has a wall of roughly hewn logs surrounding it giving it a prickly appearance.  Cookfire smoke and noise rise above them after many days on the road this view of civilization is a welcome one.  The gate directly ahead of you is barely open and a long line leads towards it. On the field outside the walls other groups of wagons, carts and travelers gather together.
The residents of West Ward have come up with a taxation system where each good brought into the city has a tax levied against it.  Some people try to do business outside the town on occasion but the security of West Ward’s tall walls are hard to ignore.  Unfortunately the PCs have arrived late in the day and they are unable to get through the line and the tax collectors before sundown.  Jamalamin thinks that they should camp a bit away from the road leading to town and away from the stink of the village.  They make camp in the field outside the town among numerous stumps and 24″ grass where the forest used to be.
Dun sees another trader he knows and heads off exchange greetings and catch up on old times.  Hal and Mal setup camp and Nel tends to the children.  When camp is settled and the evening meal is just about ready Dun returns with a small keg of ale the result of an old favor that he cashed in.  He thanks the PCs for their hard work in getting them to West Ward and tells them that they’ll be paid the 15gp promised in full on the morrow.
Abdul takes the first watch.  After huddling close to the fire for warmth in the cool night for several hours he hears some faint sounds over the wind at the other camps across the road closer to town.  He listens for a bit and then returns back to the fire.  Not long afterward he hears more sounds and wakes Jamalamin whose ranger ears clearly make out the sound of battle across the road.
Jamalamin shouts to the others to wake up and arm themselves, with both Nibil and Bicklebrick up their keen Dwarven dark vision allows them to see several beasts beyond the light of the campfire.

These beasts stand about shoulder height with a heavy stooped frame.  Corse long fur covers their enlongated sounts, heads, and body.  Dull yellow teeth hang out of it’s long mouth and it’s eyes catch the firelight like a cat’s.  The beast smells of strong body oder and fetid water.  Its monkey like hands end in small chipped yellow claws.  A long, bald wormlike tail trashes about behind it.  It lopes towards you using a combination of hands and feet while emitting a horrible shrieking sound.

Jamalamin is charged while Bicklebrick begins to suit up in his armor with the help of Rystime the wizard.  Nibil reached out with his senses to determine if the beasts had the touch of evil upon them but his heart was unsure if they were truly horrific creatures or just wild animals.  Abdul drew his scimitar and shouted at the beast that charged Jamalamin.  Jamalamin tried to gut the beast that charged him but the creature proved too nimble and slipped through his defenses.
The beast sunk its teeth into Jamalamin and the stink of it’s twisted mouth was nauseating, the salty ranger managed to shrug the beast off before the infection could take root, still the beast nearly crippled the ranger’s shoulder.  Seeing his travel companion and friend suffer a wound Nibil forgoes donning his armor and engages another of the monsters.  He fights with it for a short bit but again the creature proves evasive and soon the shaved paladin is bleeding as well.  The wound delt to him feels hot and aching in the cold night.  He worries that he may have suffered some infection from the creature.
Abdul sees the blood seeping through Jamalamin’s armor and calls upon the power of the goddess of winds to heal him so that he can drive back this evil.  Jamalamin feels a strong breeze at his back as if the wind itself wants him to fight on and retightens the grip on his scimitar.  Rystime sees his companions in trouble and lets loose with an arcane missile which strikes one of the creatures with enough force to draw blood.  A thrid creature charges out of the grass and crashes into the side of one of the wagons and begins to savage the wooden exterior.  Screams from Nel and her children can be heard from the inside.
With his armor fully suited up Bicklebrick moves to engage the first beast while Abdul sees if he can draw the attention of the one attacking the wagon.  Abdul calls upon the power of his god to try jolt the beast with divine lightning but in the flickering firelight the bolt goes wild but the bright flash shows that there’s at least 2 more beasts out in the field nearby, they seems confused or lost and don’t seem keen to attack though.  Unwilling to sit by while his family is attacked Mal jumps out of the wagon shouting “bar the door behind me Nel!”  He lines up a shot with his bow but the poor light and the frenzy of the melee cause his shot to go astray.
With a combined effort Bicklebrick and Jamalamin put down the first beast and the two move over to support Abdul who is engaged in melee combat with the beast attacking the wagon.  Rystime is trying to help Nibil with the beast that injured him.  Abdul manages to score a solid hit with his scimitar and by the light cast from his light spell he can see that upon opening a wound on the beast that it has maggots crawling on it’s skin and fur and now into the open wound.  The creature lashes back and bites Abdul on his side.  The dull teeth puncture his armor and he is soon bleeding and his wound also feels hot and foul.
Jamalamin tries to draw the beast’s attention while Bicklebrick moves around the wagon behind it and finds an opening in the creature’s defenses and puts a shortsword between it’s ribs.  The creature spasms for a second then lies still.  Jamalamin then moves over to help Nibil and by flanking the beast they manage to silence it as well.
5 men on horseback are closing in quickly on the group and shouts of “WEST WARD!” and “For the Ward!” can be heard heralding their arrival.  While help may be on the way, 2 of the PCs are injured and the greater question remains, what are these things and where did they come from?