Siliceous

An Unexpected Arrival: Skyblade - Spy, Assassin, Silver Hand Employee?
An Unexpected Arrival: Skyblade - Spy, Assassin, Silver Hand Employee?

March 16, 994 8:00 a.m. Party Gold = 419,856 g.p.
The group just leveled up
Reunited: Tyzzer Zaneen and Nan Hornburg
The plan to descend to level 3 and take on any drow and all evil that lurks there (excepting Brazzemal). The first plan is to destroy the emanating sense of undeath that Bui sensed below the temple of the Elder Elemental Eye.

As the group discusses plans and talks with Nan, Charzin and Rowena hear and sense the tentacle wall moving and then notice shadows flickering as something has entered the curtained room. Rowena announces there is an intruder and casts light to brighten the room.

Out steps a blue skinned, transparent white-haired medium female humanoid. The group questions her and senses tension between her and Nan.

Nan seems to know her, or of her. She says her name is Skyblade and that she was sent by the Silver Hand. Nan says she is a known spy. She says she is an assassin.

She claims to have been sent to ensure the victory over the giants and the dark force behind them.

The group has developed more trust in Nan, despite Skyblade’s questioning of his reasons for joining. Nan suggests that either option comes with its benefits and its drawbacks. Accepting Skyblade is a risk worth taking, as long as they keep an eye on her. He believes it would not be good to turn down help sent by Sarax (via Carnavon, as stated by Skyblade). The risk is if she assassinated a member of the Silver Hand and now is tracking one or more of the party.

Her story of entry into the Fire Giant Hall seemed right, but the group didn’t trust her.

She stated that pay is her motivation, not some greater ideal. She made light of Bui and Tyzzer’s greater ideals and, after being told about Thalra, asked how well those ideals stood up in the group saving Thalra from her drow compatriots?

Skyblade questioned Charzin’s entry into the group, too.

The group’s options seemed limited. She joined and the group descended towards the cold feeling of undeath.

Exploring the tunnels to the south, with Tyzzer’s axe the source of light in an otherwise pitch black part of the mountain, two troll wraiths floated near a large pit in a cavern filled with stalagtites and natural posts. A battle broke out. There were five troll wraiths and one more huge troll wraith who ascended from the large pit.

The battle lasted and lasted as the trolls regenerated and took partial damage because they were incorporeal.

Bui momentarily rebuked violence, making it so the enemy could not attack for some time.

The heroes found out that if they hit the troll wraiths with fire, it momentarily shut down their regeneration. When the heroes hit with radiant energy the troll wraiths became temporarily corporeal.

The troll wraiths only dealt necrotic damage. Rowena gave the heroes resistance to this type of damage.

Towards the end of the fight, Rowena put a fire defense on herself and threw herself into the whisps that were left when trolls were defeated, before they could reform and reanimate.

The trolls were defeated. All of the heroes and the two new allies aided in the fight.

Bui sensed that the bones in this area were still not at rest. To ensure they did not reanimate, the group took time to burn all of the bones to ash. Bui felt the souls released and the air cleared.

The group explored the nearby tunnels.

The group took a short rest.

The group realizes that just to their west is where the dragon resides, a little south and west is where the lava pit is below the bridge the group crossed above. Further west is the home of the chimeras. There may be some other areas near there, but the group is not interested in any of these parts now.

Based on what Keak, and to a lesser extent Obmi, told them, they need to go north and then possibly later northwest to get to the stronghold of the drow, the place the heroes seek to defeat that darker force behind the giant raids, likely led by Eclavdra, the one who escaped the group in the Temple of the Elder Elemental Eye.

Instead, the group took the northeast passage and will uncover what is there next time.

Next time:
The group goes into the northeast passage…

March 16, 994 2:00 p.m. Party Gold = 419,856 g.p.
One battle since leveling up
Rowena still has a disk of awesome for her use of the portal of surprise magic

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The Fiery Rain of Terror Extinguished?
The Fiery Rain of Terror Extinguished?

March 15, 994 4:15 p.m. Party Gold = 416,615 g.p.
The group has Chest #5 unopened, the head of Frupy, the fire giant forge priest head, and a piece of the volcanic iron golem ready to deliver to Brazzemal. Clever & hand from Royal Headmaster and part of the Torturer. They still need Snurre’s sub commanders.
After 6 battles (past 3 milestones) – very close to leveling up
Rowena holds Thalra’s staff

START:
With renewed energy from their gods, the heroes planned their next move. Thinking about seeking out Obmi, the group remembered the wall of tentacles. Rowena grabbed a tentacle rod from one of the drow under priests they defeated and headed towards the wall of tentacles with Charzin following right behind.

Rowena thought to use the tentacle rod but thought the last time the wall of tentacles was touched it triggered the wall to writhe to life. When the rod came near the wall, the wall moved a little. Charzin grabbed the tentacle rod from Rowena and jammed it in there. The wall opened to a dimly lit room.

The party entered and with their strong perceptive skills, noticed shadowy figures trying to hide on the ceiling, two driders. Rowena and Bui were quickly webbed within reach of the wall of tentacles, now that had come to life. Tyzzer spotted a descending staircase. The driders blinked in and out and were able to get a couple of good cuts in, but nothing that really hurt the heroes. The wall tried to grab Rowena and Bui, but both were able to avoid it. Charzin, aided by the other heroes, drew the driders in and quickly destroyed them. Nothing of value was found in the room.

Charzin and Bui were interested in where the stairs led. 75 feet down the stairs, it opened up into rough hewn passages. A dim light that smelled of sulfur came from the north. Bui sensed an unwholesome presence nearby. He felt it was undead connected to the power from the Elder Elemental Eye in the temple above. The group retreated back up the stairs and readied themselves to go to the supposed fire giant barracks.

As the heroes entered the hall on the temple side of the bridge, they saw 3 fire giants, a large firebred hell hound alpha, and Obmi Ironwhisper. Obmi had a chain wrapped around Keak’s neck.

Tyzzer and Aarth, the fire giant hound master, mocked and threatened one another, trying to draw the other into a battle.

The group quickly planned a surprise attack. It worked like this:
Rowena began to incant her spell as the group moved quickly forward together across the bridge. A portal appeared, the heroes jumped in and appeared right behind their unsuspecting enemies. Bui rebuked violence and shut down the enemies attacks. Before he could act, Aarth the fire giant hound master was dropped. His firebred hell hound alpha, Nvilka, masterless now, dropped his tail between his legs and fled. Obmi, became insubstantial and phased through the wall to escape. He then went invisible and got away. The fire giant knights put up a short fight. Keak was saved, again.

The group intreated with Keak, learning that he had been on an expedition with elves as a scout into the Underdark. After a cave collapse, he had been separated from the group. Soon later, he was captured by drow and brought here with them. Keak new of more drow that served Eclavdra and that they sought the power of the Elder Elemental Eye, thought to be found in the temple here. They also sought to use the giants to raid the lands above ground. This group of drow were said to no longer be welcome in their old society, those who worshipped Lolth. Keak said two fire giant death knights loyal to Snurre guard the passage to Erelhei-Cinlu in the Underdark. The group believed Keak would not double cross them, but they didn’t fully trust him, either.

The group searched the now empty barracks and found 2500 gp, 25 pp (250 gp), and gem inlaid manacles emblazoned with the symbol of Torog (worth 1500 gp).

Rowena used her ritual of magic map (325 gp) to find Obmi. He had gone to the throne room of the first level. The group went and found him.

After a short discussion and an attempt to get info from him, Tyzzer and Charzin charged Obmi. Bloodied, Obmi tried to escape again, turning invisible. As he reached the front gate, it opened and he ran into Nan Hornburg. At Tyzzer’s direction, Nan walloped Obmi with his hammer, knocking him unconscious.

Tyzzer healed Obmi.

Tyzzer and Nan hugged.

Charzin took Obmi’s ring of invisibility.

Nan was asked why he was here. He said it was just the right time? He was asked what happening with the giants and with Adalaentar. Nan said tribute was paid by the king to the dragon and that the Goodwell was taking credit for the decrease in giant raids, despite the fact that it was the Silver Hand’s work, led by the heroes.

Tyzzer was elated to see Nan, and to finally have an opportunity that he never dreamed possible, the chance to fight beside him to make things right in the world. Bui and Charzin had a different sense about Nan’s reasons for showing up. Rowena was simply in tune with herself, being the first to sense her heightened power.

The group leveled up.

Keak, threatened with what would happen if he didn’t fulfill his duty, was sent with Obmi to return Obmi to the dwarven clan holds and told that he could keep the reward given from them. Keak seemed excited to leave and that he would be dutiful in this task. Keak was also given Obmi’s +4 dagger. Bui gave Keak a phantom steed (ritual 144 gp) and used find the path (ritual 70 gp) sent them off. (We’re going to say that the body of Dram Blighthammer was sent off with Keak to be given a proper burial, as well.)

Charzin questioned Tyzzer about Area 24 and the hardbacks. Tyzzer didn’t realize that Charzin knew about the hardbacks.

The group, with all of the dragon tasks accomplished, and now feeling as ready as they could be to face Brazzemal, climbed the mountain and yelled down into the chimney that led to Brazzemal’s lair. The red dragon said to drop his demands down the chimney. The heads and trinkets from all of the kills were dropped.

Brazzemal emerged from the chimney and confronted the heroes. The group opened chest number five, at the dragon’s demand, and found the head of Snurre covered in gold pieces. The heroes were amazed at the powerful magic of the dragon, took the head, and gave Brazzemal the chest of gold.

After a few tense moments when Brazzemal alerted the heroes that he knew they had killed his young (to take their home base cave), the heroes convinced him not to destroy them and that they had fulfilled their end of the tenuous new alliance. Brazzemal returned into the mountain and the group breathed a collective sigh of relief.

Next time:

  • Reunited: Tyzzer Zaneen and Nan Hornburg
  • The plan to descend to level 3 and take on any drow and all evil that lurks there (excepting Brazzemal).

March 16, 994 8:00 a.m. Party Gold = 419,856 g.p.
The group just leveled up

  • Rowena earned a disk of awesome for her use of the portal of surprise magic
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The Temple of the Elder Elemental Eye
The Temple of the Elder Elemental Eye

March 15, 994 4:00 p.m. Party Gold = 359,115 g.p.
The group has Chest #5 unopened, the head of Frupy, the fire giant forge priest head, and a piece of the volcanic iron golem ready to deliver to Brazzemal. Clever & hand from Royal Headmaster and part of the Torturer. They still need Snurre’s sub commanders.
After 4 (4.5) battles (past 2 milestones)
Rowena holds Thalra’s staff

PREVIEW/RECAP:
Dram Blighthammer, saved from the prison, joined the heroes in hopes of destroying fire giants, azers, and mostly Obmi Ironwhisper (dwarf traitor). A handful of enemies have escaped the heroes including Snurre and a drow from the great hall, Obmi (dwarf traitor), Virchilin (drow interrogator) and a group of rakshasas. Thalra Yauntyrr, a drow, but not an enemy, was disarmed but left the party when the group entered the prison.

The dragon Brazzemal convinced the heroes that he had killed Snurre. The heroes have collected near everything they promised the dragon in exchange for Snurre’s head. They just need to find and defeat any additional sub commanders.

After a daunting battle with flame skulls and bat swarms on a bridge above lava, the heroes barely made it safely across the bridge over the lava pit, the opposite side as Keak. Keak, is a gnome the heroes saved, but he tumbled to safety towards the other side of the bridge.

The heroes push forward in hopes of finding the rumored temple, possibly of Imix.

START:
As the heroes hustled away from the bridge, Tyzzer called out for Keak with no response. Charzin, Bui, and Rowena noticed a section of the hallway wall was illusory.

On the opposite side of the illusory wall was a wall of that resembled a tangled nest of shiny black tentacles that looked, more like supple flesh than hard stone. Rowena touched the wall and it began to write. Charzin tried to push his way into/through it unsuccessfully. A short fight between the group and the wall broke out. A screem was heard coming from beyond the illusory wall, from in the temple. Rowena figured out that there may be some special key, implement, or command word that is needed to pass through the wall unmolested. Quickly, the party freed themselves from its grips and entered past the illusory wall and up the stairs.

At the top of the stairs, a scene like nothing of this world greeted the heroes eyes…

Beyond the illusory wall, a wide staircase leads up to a balcony overlooking a strange temple. The balcony railing is sculpted from purple stone, carved to resemble entrained tentacles. The twisted black pillars that support the balcony and the ceiling overhead appear to have screaming faces reflected in them. Torches along the temple’s purple walls burn with a multicolored flame but leave the balcony in shadow. In that dim light, you can see a black stone pedestal rising from the balcony floor, a purple orb nestled on top of it.

At the far end of the temple, three steps rise to form a wide, semicircular dais. On the lowest tier sits a large blackened drum and a wooden rack festooned with silver chimes. On the middle tier, an altar block of dark gray stone is flanked by two bronze braziers and six candelabra wet with black cables. Hanging from the ceiling above the topmost tier is a small black metal triangle and a matching metal cylinder. Set into the cloudy purple wall behind the dais is a twenty-foot-tall inlay of amber-like stone – an inverted equilateral triangle inscribed with a “Y” that touches the triangle’s three sides.

At the dais, two female drow wearing purple and black ceremonial robes have lit the black candles while one fire giant clad in chain mail stands on guard nearby. On the altar lays a clearly dead Thalra Yauntyrr. Cutting into her with his ceremonial dagger is Virchilin, the drow hypnotist that the group saw coming out of Moonshadow’s cell before they rescued her. Standing next to Virchilin is a dark, beautiful woman who drinks from a black vial whose liquid pours down her throat and over her face and she speaks in an undistinguishable language, leading the ceremony.

The heroes watched what appeared to be the end of this evil ritual play out as they whispered their plans to one another, hoping to maintain the element of surprise.

The altar, clearly made from stone from another word seemed alive. All of the heroes got a terrible sense of foreboding about it as they even got closer on the balcony. The altar is the centerpiece of a religious ritual that required the lighting of black candles, the beating of a drum, the ringing of chimes, and the striking of the iron triangle, all of which the drow under priests did. Bui understood that touching the altar is the first step in calling the power of the Elder Elemental Eye, which might grant a boon, but the altar is anathema to the gods, so that touching it with a holy symbol might damage it. Doing so is likely to destroy the utilized holy symbol, reducing it to residuum.

ACTION!!!
Bui handed Charzin his old +3 holy symbol. Charzin moved quickly and leaped off the balcony, teleported to the altar, touched it with the holy symbol. Immediately the altar shook and a crack became visible – it clearly was damaged. The holy symbol fell apart, turning to residuum that dropped onto the floor in front of the altar, Bui called up his god to recall Charzin back up to the balcony and the battle was on…

Dram took a running start and used his war hammer to smack the orb. The orb did not break or even fly away. Instead, 24 small golden glyphs appeared on its surface. It appeared very strange to Dram.

During the early stages of the battle, Rowena inspected the magic glyphs on the orb and figured it to be a teleportation orb. With a minute or so of concentration later after the battle, Rowena is convinced she could activate it.

The fire giant climbed onto the balcony only to be knocked off multiple times by Tyzzer and Rowena.

Meanwhile, Bui made his way towards the altar and enemy leaders to take away the attacks of three key enemies for a short period of time during the battle. He also sacrificed his +5 holy symbol to do more damage to the unholy altar.

Early in the fight Tyzzer was shot by Virchillin with a poisoned bolt. Tyzzer was unable to resist the poison and fell into a deep sleep. Bui was unable to wake Tyzzer. Dram was unable to arouse Tyzzer.

Most of the battle continued on the main level of the temple.

Another drow, Taz’zt, appeared from behind a pillar and tried to use his sneak attack several times, but was not very effective.

Between Charzin controlling and defending the battlefield, dashing back and forth, teleporting, and keeping the enemy within reach, Bui using his glorious presence, the battle standard of the Silver Eagle, and his healing, and Rowena’s attacks on the altar and some attacks on the drow, the heroes held their own.

For moments, things looked bleak, but then it turned around fast. When Charzin was dominated by the altar, the altar sprouted two massive tentacles out of the eye. These were used to pull in Charzin, and occasionally Rowena, too. Each time, the heroes were able to escape.

Rowena, near the end of the encounter, came within moments of her death and annihilation, but Charzin was able to cut her free. This attack struck the final blow, sending the tentacles back into the altar and ending the power of the Elder Elemental Eye, at least for now in this temple.

When the altar stopped, the drow under priests looked at what can presumably be Eclavdra, their leader, and then followed her lead in fighting on.

Eclavdra did battle with Dram on the balcony, killing him while Tyzzer had an unnatural sleep.

Meanwhile, Rowena, Bui, and Charzin continued the fight against a very noteworthy opponent in the remaining drow. The under priests and Eclavdra used their tentacle rods to harm the heroes. Eclavdra’s entrancing beauty was hard to resist, but her insidious offer “Serve me and I’ll spare you” which turned into, “Serve me and be our next sacrifice,” was never accepted by Charzin. The drow poison was quite problematic, but nobody other than Tyzzer felt its full effects. In the end, Virchillin, Taz’zt, the two drow under priests, and the fire giant guard were all destroyed.

Eventually Tyzzer awoke. He sunk his axe into the drow leader. Then, Eclavdra used the teleportation orb to depart.

The heroes were left bruised and beaten, but alive. Noteworthy when you are in the temple of an evil god that seemed to have a strong desire to have you as a sacrifice. The gods the heroes worshipped must have other things planned and a collective will to keep them strong.

The residuum from Bui’s holy symbols was gathered (value = 57,500 gp - +5 holy symbol @ 20% value for common item & +3 Holy Symbol of Battle @ 50% value for uncommon item)

RECAP:
The battle left Dram Blighthammer dead. Thalra Yauntyrr also lies dead in front of the Altar of the Eye, a sacrifice of her own drow brethren to the Elder Elemental Eye. The party discussed whether or not to return the body of Dram to his clan and to tell them the tale of Dram’s heroism in confronting a powerful evil that set the giant raids in motion against Terkent.

The heroes defeated the Altar of the Eye, several drow and made their female leader flee. This leader is likely Eclavdra, the woman of the same name on the note to King Snurre.

The heroes used most of their resources to defeat their enemies. Charzin (25 hp left, 0 surges left) and Bui (17 hp left, 0 surges left, 0 holy symbols left) are bloodied and without the reserves of regaining any of their health. Tyzzer is not quite bloodied and has one last burst of energy left in him to heal up his wounds 66/124 hp with 1 surge left). Rowena was near bloodied (43 hp, 0 surges left), too.

Bloodied and battered, the characters accomplished a key part of the mission and have been blessed by their gods. This has restored some of their health…

  • For sacrificing both holy symbols to save the party from the Altar of the Elder Elemental Eye and by acting as the legs of his god in bringing his fellows protection and luck, Fharlanghn has restored half (round down) of Bui’s healing surges.
  • For her major role in destroying the drow who were harnessing the power of the Elder Elemental Eye, Corellon whose goal is to thwart the drow (and who banished Lolth to the Abyss), has restored half (round down) of Rowena’s healing surges.
  • For a valiant attempt to control the battlefield including shoving a fire giant off the balcony, and overcoming the drow sleep poison, Pelor – he who is against all that is evil (that would include drow and an evil alien altar), whose voice Tyzzer may have heard while asleep, has granted Tyzzer a third (round down) of his healing surges.
  • For his ability to control the battlefield, keeping the enemy off his allies and from escaping, Charzin’s has recovered a third (round down) of his healing surges.
  • In addition to those granted by the respective gods, for coming up with and executing the plan to teleport and recall Charzin after using the holy symbol on the altar, both Bui & Charzin each gain a disk of awesome.

The heroes reached a milestone – all heroes receive an action point.

The dark force behind the giant raids has been found and confronted. Can it be defeated? The heroes will find out.

The heroes are within an eyelash of completing Brazzemal’s demands in hopes of trading for the head of Snurre. It seems like little stands between them and Obmi, perhaps only what lies in the barracks. And now the dark force that is behind it all has been uncovered. With the completion of any of these quests, the heroes know they will have obtain more powers (level up). We’ll find out if they have enough resources to do it next time…

March 15, 994 4:15 p.m. Party Gold = 416,615 g.p.
The group has Chest #5 unopened, the head of Frupy, the fire giant forge priest head, and a piece of the volcanic iron golem ready to deliver to Brazzemal. Clever & hand from Royal Headmaster and part of the Torturer. They still need Snurre’s sub commanders.
After 6 battles (past 3 milestones) – very close to leveling up
Rowena holds Thalra’s staff

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Into the Prison Ward
Into the Prison Ward

March 15, 994 9:00 a.m. Party Gold = 314,665 g.p.
Leveled Up (full strength)- after 3 battles (past 1 milestone)
Rowena holds Thalra’s staff

• We walk brazenly into the prison ward and take on the azer guards.
o Azers in the control room shut the sliding doors to the hallway and drop the portcullis to their little room.
o Thalra is left locked out. She leaves and is not found by the party later.
o A couple unique fire giants come in and join the fight, a torturer and a headsman.
o We take down the bad guys pretty quickly.
• Rescue the prisoners.
o One of the elves is Fonkin Hoddypeak and is not a part of Moonshadow’s group.
• He offers to join us.
• Gleep Worp is a human traitor from Fonkin’s party who is now working with the fire giants.
• Virchilin is a drow who works with the fire giants.
o Boldo the fire giant offers to help us, but we’re not so sure.
o Talking to Moonshadow.
• She is an annoying bitch who wants to lead us.
• Virchilin was the consort of Eclavdra
• Eclavdra is gaining information and giving it to the giants.
• We need to kill all the drow; they are in charge.
• Bui is very diplomatic and convinces Moonshadow to do what we say.
• Tyzzer talks to the bodyguards and they want to take Moonshadow back to her people.
• Charazin frees Dram Blighthammer who wants to kill all fire giants and Obmi. So Charazin takes him over to Boldo and Dram starts beating the hell out of the chained up fire giant. None of the other PCs know this happened.
• Dram promises us that his father will reward us when this is done.
• Dram’s father is Zolco Blighthammer, a wealthy merchant.
• Dram seems to REALLY happy that his hammer has blood on it now.
o We take a lot of jewelry from the torture room.
• 6000 gp of jewelry
• 10,000 gp of gems
• 5000 gp of dragon statues.
• Two Potions of vitality
• 2500 gp of a ship in a bottle
o We loot the fire priest’s room
• A gem to be used to create +5 magic weapon.
• This amazing statuette of Imix worth 15,000 gp.
• 4,000 gp
o We fulfill the Moonshadow quest. Woo. Hoo.
• 2500gp for rescuing her.
• We head over the bridge to the temple (we don’t know who the temple is to, but we assume it’s a temple to Imix)
o On the way we see Keak, a gnome, in a cage suspended over the chasm.
o Bui teleports him to the bridge.
o Bats and flameskulls come flying up to the bridge. FIGHT!
• We are pulled off the bridge several times by the pesky flameskulls.
• Eventually, we take out the bats and leave the bridge and head to the temple.
• Keak escaped to the other side of the bridge and left the group.

March 15, 994 4:00 p.m. Party Gold = 359,115 g.p.
The group has Chest #5 unopened, the head of Frupy, the fire giant forge priest head, parts of the fire giant torturer and headsman, and a piece of the volcanic iron golem ready to deliver to Brazzemal. They still may need Snurre’s sub commanders.
Leveled Up (full strength)- after 4+ battles (past 2 milestones)
Rowena holds Thalra’s staff (Thalra is gone)

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The Forgemaster is Taken Down, and a Princess turns out to be a Demonic Pussy
The Forgemaster is Taken Down, and a Princess turns out to be a Demonic Pussy

It is March 15, 994 at 8:00 a.m.
Party Gold = 314,335 g.p.
The party has fought one battle since their extended rest.

  • The night begins with the heroes making plans for how to take down the forgemaster and rescue any prisoners held by the fire giants. This planning is done quickly and in a very organized fashion as it always is.
  • During this planning, Rowena’s wards start screaming that the door to the giants’ room has been opened. With a clear path now, the heroes quickly set up an ambush in the barracks.
  • For the fist time ever, the ambush works! We don’t bother to even get the hill giant leader’s name as Charazin, Ja’Elle, and Tyzzer take him down during the surprise round.
  • The other hill giants look around nervously, but the stone giants behind them won’t allow them to bug out.
  • The heroes finish off the giants fairly easily.
  • Throughout the battle, Tyzzer continues to yell out to Obmi the F*in Traitor. It soon becomes clear that Obmi was merely using the giants as fodder so he could escape. The heroes assume Obmi is going to warn the rest of the giants. He’ll get what’s coming to him.
  • Also during the battle, the elven princess’s guards prove themselves to be mighty weak and unwilling to fight much. More on these pussies later.
  • The drow looks on with disinterested disdain. We’re not sure how long she’ll be willing to travel with us.
  • After the first fight, the heroes decide to take a short rest even though Tyzzer and Rowena are still high on adrenaline and stoneskin.
  • Ja’Elle and Tyzzer investigate a secret tunnel that leads to a vast cavern with several chimeras. * Ja’Elle and Tyzzer politely decline an encounter and run away.
  • The heroes return to the original plan, but suck at sneaking up on the forgemaster, so he’s ready for us when we get there; although, it doesn’t seem like Obmi was the one to warn him. Hmm. An epic fight ensues.
  • The forgemaster manipulates the battlefield. The azers use walls of fire. But, the heroes aren’t really that bothered by them, charging confidently through the ash and flame.
  • The elven archers, whom we had left to defend our rear flank, reveal themselves to be rakshasas. Seriously, Scott, WTF?! The heroes have now been duped twice. We’re just gonna kill EVERYONE from now on just to be sure.
  • The party is now split, but in a tactical way. Bui takes control of one half of the fight, and Charazin surprises everyone with his bravery and skill in the other half. Ja’Elle bounces around and pokes bad guys with his dagger and calls them mean names which is how I assume charisma relates to fighting. Tyzzer plays the roll of defender, trying to keep the giants away from the casters, but when this strategy fails, Rowena shows once again that she can handle herself even in a close-quarters fight.
  • The bad guys fall, and the heroes are poised to rescue the real prisoners.

It is March 15, 994 at 9:00 a.m.
Party Gold = 314,665 g.p.
The party has fought three battles (including 1 milestone) since their extended rest.
Rowena hold Thalra’s staff
The party still seeks Snurre’s sub-commanders heads for Barzemal, the red dragon.

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A Dark Elf, an Elven Princess, and a Missing Dwarf
A Dark Elf, an Elven Princess, and a Missing Dwarf

March 15, 994 at 4:30 a.m.

The heroes had a long talk with Javok and Thalra about what to do.

The group decided to keep Thalra close and not to let her leave to find her drow brethren. Javok was sent on a phantom steed from Bui to find Nan and deliver all of the information they had gained about the Hall of King Snurre and everything that happened to date. He left.

The group descended to level two. During the descent a maniacal cackle was clear above the constant din of steel on steel.

Ja’Elle scouted stealthily and found a pair of two-headed fire giants with smoldering morningstarts along with a gangly creature with warty green skin, its face set with a single unblinking eye (nothic). The nothic was constantly cackling.

Ja’Elle went a few steps north and approached what appeared to be the forge and the entrance to a prison area on opposite sides of the hall. It appeared four azer guards were just inside the entrance to the prison area. Something was clearly banging steel in the forge. Ja’Elle could not safely get close enough to gain more information there.

To the south and then east, Ja’Elle found a large mountain yak attached to a cart and three sets of double doors. The double doors to the east seems like it would lead to the room filled with hill and stone giants that Ja’Elle could only slightly remember, as the last time he entered through a secret door before quickly being pelted and knocked unconscious by their rocks. There was a closed double door to the north and an open double door to the south. Ja’Elle snuck up and noticed a well dressed female elf and three bruised male elves, their clothes in tatters.

He alerted the party. The group decided to attack the nothic and the fire giant ettins. About half a minute into the battle with them, a sound coming from the south hall could be heard. Tyzzer directed Ja’Elle to swap positions in the initiative order with him, allowing Ja’Elle to check it out. It was four frost giants.

Meanwhile, Rowena turned three of the frost giants into miniature puggles. The puggles ran away and eventually returned as frost giants. This bought the others time to weaken and destroy the remaining ettins and the fourth frost giant.

Charzin locked down the fire giant ettins pretty well. The nothic was destroyed before it could mess up the heroes minds. The ettins took some effort to dispatch, but with Bui’s ability to weaken them, it was only a matter of time.

When only two frost giants remained, Thalra offered to help intimidate them into submission. Tyzzer aided Thalra and were convincing them as Ja’Elle sprung up and over one of them to deal a killing blow. The remaining frost giant dropped his axe, knelt before Tyzzer, and gave up.

The heroes, through Thalra’s translation gained information that Obmi was the same dwarf as the one they described, and that he was an advisor to Snurre. The giant was eventually allowed to go to return to the glacial rift. He left.

Meanwhile, Ja’Elle found a hidden stairway to level 3 behind a curtain in the ettins’ room. He also looted an unlocked chest and gained 2000 gp.

Next the heroes went to the elves. After meeting them and discovering the female to be the princess Moonshadow, the group discussed why she was here. She said Snurre let her live and was taunting them by allowing them to keep their weapons. She said they knew not to try an escape because it would only make things worse for them. She said her people would pay a big ransom for her safe return. She said there were more prisoners in the prison and asked the heroes to save them, too. The heroes trusted her (insight checks) and want to save the prisoners.

The heroes discussed various plans about how to block the door to the hill giants and stone giants, how to use the yak and the cart, etc. Rowena placed 5 magic eyes to watch the door and scream the alarm, “They’ve escaped, defend the throne room!” if the giants open the door.

Thalra was disarmed and kept with the group. The group said we will not kill you, but we cannot trust you because your people are allied with our enemy, the fire giants (Tyzzer’s words paraphrased).

The heroes searched through the frost giant room and found a sack with 500 gp and an ivory and malachite horn (1500 gp).

The heroes plan to go to the forge and the prison next to free the prisoners and defeat the blacksmith. They are also still looking for Obmi.

The heroes have fought one battle since the extended rest.

It is March 15, 994 at 8:00 a.m.
Party Gold = 314,335 g.p.

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Obmi Found and Lost, Uncovering a Dark Alliance, and Saving Trapped Souls
Obmi Found and Lost, Uncovering a Dark Alliance, and Saving Trapped Souls

March 14, 994 11:30 p.m.
Party Gold = 222,750 g.p.

The group introduced themselves to the dwarf, who described himself as Prince Malak Thunderhelm. Tyzzer and the others felt so comfortable with him that they told him of all of their victories over the giants and said his escape was safe. The heroes noticed that he looked able to hold his own in a battle, but maybe not as powerful as the party. He convinced the party that he wanted to remain safe and not be seen by his torturers. The party let him go.

Soon later, after letting Ja’Elle nose around through a supply room and after inspecting the room he emerged from and finding a nice bed along with a locked and trapped chest that Ja’Elle triggered, the heroes decided that the dwarf must have fooled them and he must be Obmi Ironwhisper, the dwarf traitor they were sent to find and return to the dwarven clan holds. They quickly, but unsuccessfully tried to track him thinking at first he may have bolted from the fire giant hall altogether. It seems he did not.

The group found a room with a great battle plan room with giant seats and another for a dwarf. There was a map layout of 100 miles by 100 miles that had plotted areas that had been attacked by the giants along with likely future attack locations.

Rowena, with the help of Charzin and Ja’Elle was able to use a magical mapping ritual, but the mystery dwarf did not appear on it. The group searched through various scrolls and parchments and found a note from Eclavdra to Snurre. It read:

“Your Highness, King Snurre of the Fire Giants:

I request an audience with Your Majesty on a matter of great importance. A glorious opportunity awaits us. I have been granted permission by my superiors to offer you tribute for a few precious moments of your time. It has been years since representatives of our two peoples last spoke and shared a flagon of hot wine. On this particular occasion, Erelhei-Cinlu brings you a new promise of victory over your hated enemies.

If you will hear my words, please convey your interest with all haste. I look forward to hearing from you and visiting your great hall.

Eclavdra of House Eilservs"

The group decided to not rush to find the dwarf, but instead to go slowly and smartly forward. Next the headed back towards the treasure room that housed the volcanic iron golem. On the way they searched for a secret door at the end of a long passage to nowhere. Charzin opened the door, which entered into Frupy, the fire giant queen’s, room.

A battle ensued. Frupy, protected by two female fire giant knights, two fiendish dire weasels, and 8 azer hall wardens put up a decent fight.

Frupy activated her soul trapping mirror to draw Tyzzer out of the fight. Rowena clouded the area in front of the mirror, frustrating Frupy and stopping her ability to trap more souls. Rowena also dispersed many of the azers quickly. Charzin, Bui, and Ja’Elle did battle with the nasty dire weasels and the defending fire giant knights. It took some teamwork, but the party was able to break through the queen’s defenses and destroy her.

Tyzzer sensed another soul had been trapped within the mirror, so after being freed by Rowena, and after Charzin confirmed that destroying the mirror would free the other soul(s), the group crushed the mirror and out popped two, Javok and a female crow named Thalra Yauntyrr.

The group questioned Javok. He said he was scouting for Nan Hornberg, to send information that would be helpful for the heroes, but was captured and put into this mirror.

Thalra Yauntyrr provided lots of interesting information that could prove useful in future encounters with drow and possibly others.

According to Ja’Elle, Thalra told the heroes the drow had:

  • Rejected Lolth
  • Driven out of home city

Thalra wants to:

  • Given away as tribute by “friends”
  • Wants to find friends
  • Wants to harness power of elder elemental eye against Lolth followers

According to Bui – put another way, the enemy of our enemy is our friend. She wants to harness the power that is currently being used by giants to kill innocent surface dwellers in order to wage war against Lolth’s followers. We are pretty okay with that trade, though we should be aware this is not without its risks. Will we have to go back to afga…the underdark… to deal with the nice drow not using the weapon we game them how we see fit?

The group agreed to let Thalra go and Javok stayed on with the heroes (the heroes later changed their minds about both). The group gained treasure.

Next, the group headed for a rematch against the volcanic iron golem. With Bui’s ability to shut down the golems attack for a few rounds and Ja’Elle knocking it out for a round, the heroes destroyed the golem.

After unlocking and opening four of the five treasure chests, the group was much richer and had various magic items to distribute. Rowena took a LVL 22 +5 Blackflock Robe and a LVL 21 Ring of Resourceful Wizardry. Bui took a +5 resounding mace and a LVL 18 Bag of Tricks Rust. Charzin took LVL 20 +4 Deathcut Leather Armor. Lots of wondrous and valuable items were found.

Along the way, 3 potions of vitality were found and distributed amongst the group.

After these experiences, having learned more about themselves the heroes found more powers they possessed (as they leveled up to LVL 19).

The heroes plans to go one level down, probably not into the den of giants, but instead to follow the descending passageway likely taken by the dwarf they seek to reacquaint themselves with next time.

March 15, 994 4:30 a.m.
Party Gold = 310,850 g.p.+ 3 vitality potions
The group has Chest #5 unopened, the head of Frupy, and a piece of the volcanic iron golem ready to deliver to Brazzemal. They still need the fire giant forge priest and Snurre’s sub commanders.

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Almost an Angel
Almost an Angel

Kissandi Saga Part 7

Recently, the group had found their way into the Shadowfell, trying to find a way to destroy the rift that had opened into Lambasa, the capital city. After an arduous path, the group found themselves at what seemed the heart of the maze.

March 2, 994 @ 3:00 pm

Completing the challenge, Kobhein, Drake, and Rabbit shut down some of the active powers on the altar, in the crystal balls, and in the cultist.

After reviving Kissandi and Tilly, the group discusses the difficult choice that lies before them. The realization that if they see out their mission to shut down the rift, they will not be able to leave the Shadowfell the way they came in, but if they leave now the rift will remain open.

As they are talking, they notice the presence of another humanoid hiding in the room. He is called out and met. His name is Malgrim and he is an experience human rogue. He seems only interested in helping Kissandi and seems to think Kissandi will help him someday in the future. The group does not appear to understand him, but he has gained enough trust to join in the mission.

The scholars continue to be argumentative and want no part of staying in the Shadowfell and insist on someone helping them return to Lambasa. Rabbit sees this as a chance to help save Tilly who has clearly been affected by entering the Shadowfell. Ven “Drake” Roberts also says he must leave, and wishes Kissandi and Kobhein well. They all depart.

Kissandi, Kobhein, and Malgrim continue on. They begin more work on the altar area. Kissandi is drawn to face the demon that possessed the shadar-kai and heads through the arcane archway. Kobhein and Malgrim follow.

The gray haze settles throughout this space. A slight wind blows through. Nobody can see beyond 10 feet away. Malgrim’s attempt to break a sunrod is not effective.

Therapin, the suicide demon’s voice can be heard echoing in the space. A clouded battle is fought in what seems to be an MC Escher painting.

The suicide demon demoralizes the group, at one time making Kissandi cut herself, at others suggesting the heroes give up and to release themselves to her control. This sometimes stops the heroes, but only for moments as Kissandi, Malgrim, and Kobhein continue on in the battle.

Therapin says, “there is no way to escape the Shadowfell if you close the gate and there is no way to call Fyria back here! She has been loosed upon your world, you gnats!”

Partway through the battle, Kissandi is confused about whether is was Therapin’s face or the Raven Queen’s face she saw in a vision and carved into her thigh. The feeling of unease eventually lifts with Kissandi reassured in her faith.

When Therapin is bloodied, she starts to spawn demonic manifestations that repeatedly do flyby attacks and annoy the heroes.

Barely surviving, the heroes defeat Therapin. Kissandi destroys four of the remaining six manifestations before being knocked unconscious. With little health left, Malgrim is able to destroy the remaining essence of the suicide demon. Unfortunately, Kobhein did not make it.

Reviving his comrades, Malgrim and Kissandi realize they need to recuperate before continuing on. They are inspired by their heroic victory, but demoralized that their battle with Therapin was not needed to shut down the rift or to find Fyria.

Rabbit and Tilly arrive back in the hall, stating they have brought the others to safety and want to aid in closing this rift.

After recovering enough to carry on, but giving more time for the rift to solidify, the heroes work again at the altar. Malgrim studies the symbols, Kissandi prays to the Raven Queen, while Rabbit and Tilly help out.

The walls of the hall dissipate and now the group stands at the base of a hill, atop which is a marvelous pool of radiance. Four tents stand at corners of the base of the hill. Above the pool of radiance flies Fyria, shadow angel, not looking to happy to have been recalled to this space. Also hovering around the edges of the pool are four shades of fallen heroes.

Kissandi and Fyria challenge one another about the path of the Raven Queen and whose path is true. Kissandi, for today, is unsure which path has been chosen by the Raven Queen, or are both true paths?

A battle ensues. Kissandi and the others quickly fell the shades of fallen heroes.

A githyandki shade appears and does battle with Rabbit and Tilly as Malgrim works at defacing the many markings on the well, seemingly battling the power that has opened the rift.

Kissandi, after becoming invisible to Fyria, the shadow angel, does a flying charge just hitting Fyria in mid-air. Kissandi falls and lands in the pool of radiance. The liquid is thicker than water. Fyria uses shadow wings to obscure the zone around Kissandi, and then charges into the liquid, battling Kissandi in a space now unseen to the others. The two fight. Kissandi is able to make it to the top of the water by using various escape powers, only to be pulled back under by Fyria.

Eventually, the killing blow is leveled on Fyria. She bursts and those near her are swallowed by darkness, almost knocking them out. One of the halflings is able to offer a final prayer that helps mute the power of the well and close the opening to the rift to Lambasa.

The heroes have done it!

The essence of the area itself seems to shake. The darkness gives way to light. The groups reemerges in the hall they had found the shadar-kai who were controlled by Therapin.

Treasures are found including:

  • Shadowfell Signet LVL 19
  • Shadowfell Gloves LVL 16
  • Shadowrift Blade LVL 17 (short sword)
  • A bag that Kissandi knows she needs to take and not open, the Raven Queen told her about it earlier – it is to be a gift to help convert a powerful unbeliever later.

March 3, 994 @ 1:00 am

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A Deal with the Dragon
A Deal with the Dragon

March 14, 994 9:00 p.m.

The party heads in the direction of the front doors, 4 severed fire giant hands stored to use for safe reentry…

Spotted high above by Tyzzer, the dragon, Brazzemal effortlessly flies down towards the party.

Neither side intimidated, a negotiation is made. The dragon says Snurre is dead. Brazzemal says he killed Snurre because he ran to him seeking protection, not a very kingly thing to do.

Brazzemal wants the heads of the Queen, the fire giant forge master, Snurre’s sub commanders, and the volcanic iron golem in exchange for Snurre’s head. The party seems content with the deal. Brazzemal tosses what appears to be Snurre’s iron net to them and leaves.

Charzin leads the party back into the fire giants home, using the severed hand to seemingly deactivate the door.

The group first goes a new direction, listening first, then surprising the kitchen staff led by Sulfuria. A handful of azer servants were quickly destroyed. Sulfuria seemed to try to escape but was quickly boxed in and destroyed. A seething flaming shard was freed after the fight. Rowena made a brief kinship with it and it followed the party until the next battle began, before escaping. The party found a small sack of coins with 250 gp.

The group continued until they reached the armory where they dispatched 4 hell hounds, two fire archons, and a azer pyromancer who led them. Lots of giant weapons and armor here, but nothing of note. The group reached a milestone and gained an action point.

Next up, the group headed into an area with 6 azer blackguard. Ja’Elle tried to start the fight off with a bang, but ended up taking lumps from many of the very prepared azer blackguard. Rowena immobilized and moved the encroaching azer. Charzin kept them at bay. Tyzzer commanded his allies to strike them while they were down. Bui magnificently weakened the enemy with the power of his god and the standard of the silver dragon. After half of the azer fell in the battle a dwarf slave in manacles stumbled out of a nearby doorway asking for help. Tyzzer went to see how to help. The group defeated the azer. The manacles on the dwarf prisoner came off very easily when Ja’Elle looked to remove them.

We left off about to take a short rest, to talk with the dwarf prisoner, and to continue on through the entry level of Snurre’s lair.

March 14, 994 11:30 p.m.
Party Gold = 222,750 g.p.

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Running Away?!?
Running Away?!?

March 13, 994 1:15 p.m.
Party Gold = 222,500 g.p.

Snurre was the first to run, but wouldn’t be the last…

The party had Snurre fleeing for his life. A quick conversation about whether to press the pursuit or to catch their breath did not hinder the group from pursuing Snurre. The secret tunnel split in two directions. It was dark.

Charzin tracked and found fresh footprints. All but Ja’Elle headed that direction. Ja’Elle scouted the other direction and searched unsuccessfully for a secret door at the end of the hall.

Charzin discovered an illusory wall. Behind it was a volcanic iron golem that looked exactly like Snurre. Charzin charged it. It’s volcanic aura was intense. It was very difficult to get away from it. Tyzzer, Rowena and Bui joined the fight as Ja’Elle slipped past and ventured down a long stair-well.

Charzin and Tyzzer locked their focus on the iron golem. Rowena and Bui heard loud crashes from down the stairwell and then the groan of their halfling ally as he received a barrage of hurled rocks from hill and stone giants readied behind a secret door he pulled open.

Bui was able to save Ja’Elle. They made their way back up the stairs with the hill and stone giants ending their pursuit. The volcanic iron golem battled on. Charzin was knocked unconscious. Tyzzer was dying, too, but stayed on his feet groggily.

The group slowly made their retreat to the secret door leading to the great hall of Snurre. Barely escaping, the volcanic iron golem did not follow them into the great hall.

The group limped back out of the home of the fire giants and back to their cave. They took an extended rest, but their dreams were dark and full of questions.

The giants and their allies now knew their home had been breached and by whom. Where did Snurre go? How could they defeat the volcanic iron golem? What was in the treasure chests near the iron golem? How to get past those hill and stone giants? What about Brazzemal the Red Dragon?

It has been rare if ever that the group has needed to retreat. The question of their mortality pressed into their minds. Charzin reinforced this with his requests to return to Lambasa. Tyzzer insisted that they return with the head of Snurre.

On March 14, the party set out and hid until they were able to find fire giants leaving their home and heading out. They found 2 and 4 medium hell hounds. A quick fight that took very few resources of the party led to a victory and 4 fire giant hands, intended for use on the front door for safe reentry.

March 14, 994 9:00 p.m.
Party Gold = 222,500 g.p.

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