Archive for August, 2010

19
Aug

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.

3
Aug

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