Siliceous

Further Into the Rift
September 1, 2013

Feb 13, 994 at 11:00 p.m.

The group talks for a bit before deciding to head back up the stairs in an effort to find a way to the frost giants on the ledge above. Before ascending, a booming voice approaches from the north.

Ja’Elle and Kissandi lead the charge into melee against the frost giant skeleton Kvaltigar and Wintermaw, his enormous winter wolf wearing spiked bones on his armor. Finding his weakness to radiant damage and critical hits, the group makes quick work of Kvaltigar. Before his death, he said that he thought the party was sent by his brother, Grugnur, to kill him again. Grugnur is the Frost Giant Jarl. Wintermaw did a lot of damage to those who willingly tried to pierce the bone spikes, but eventually succumbed to the onslaught.

During the fight, the group noticed strange powers bestowed on Kvaltigar when he stood in the blue luminescent haze.

Tyzzer took the Greataxe of the Glacial Rift from Kvaltigar.

The group decided not to follow the tracks left by Kvaltigar and Wintermaw coming from the north in an effort to get to the frost giants watching the ice dome from above.

Ja’Elle scouted ahead. Ja’Elle was able to get an attack off before the frost giants could act. One giant fell 100 feet to the floor of the rift, but survived the long fall. The other frost giant was mobbed by the party and quickly perished.

The frost giant who fell raced up the stairs and was slashed again by Ja’Elle as he ran past to call for help. The group was able to kill him quickly, but not before he had alerted a nearby cave filled with ogres.

The battle continued in the quarters of the ogres. Many dwarves are seemingly kept as slaves in a pit within the ogre den. The ogres, led by Thurbash were brazen as they withstood much damage from a wall of fire erected by Rowena for quite some time.

Thurbash was able to fool the group into thinking ogres were going to get more help. Ja’Elle tried to sneak around to find a back entrance or exit from the cave and was noticed by a frost toad, who started croaking. This set off other frost toads croaking. Ja’Elle returned to the group and let them know that an area with at least a frost giant and a winter wolf was likely aware of intruders in the nearby area.

The heroes have taken significant damage and expended many resources, but know they have learned enough to improve their abilities (by leveling up) when they next have time for an extended rest. A few ogres remain on the other side of the wall of fire. Likely reinforcements will probably arrive to help the ogres soon. The battle continues next time.

Party Gold = 66,145 g.p.
 (owe Ja’Elle’s taylor 500 g.p. more when receive final product)
Feb 14, 994 at 12:15 p.m.

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Into the Rift
July 27, 2013

Feb 13, 994 at 8:30 p.m.

Just after an extended rest the heroes descend into the rift. After moving along a ledge, the group entered a cave, snuck up near some winter wolves, but then woke them up.

Tonight’s game began with combat. The heroes very quickly dispatched the two winter wolves and then two frost giants, one who was a hand axe thrower and the other who fought with an icy great axe. The area was searched, but no treasure was found. It appeared to be an entry guard area. Both Rowena and Kissandi scored two critical hits in this encounter.

Next, the heroes followed some fissures in the icy ground and pathways. Ja’Elle was almost dragged into a pit by icy tendrils, but managed to hold onto the ledge. Bui recalled his ally.

After planning, Ja’Elle and Rowena were able to leap to safety and explore the nearby icy caverns. They found eight humanoids encased in ice as trophies. In a minute, Rowena melted one of the casings, the one with the female elf, then searched her. Ja’Elle and Rowena returned and reported back.

After following the cave passageways further, the heroes found another ledge. Choosing between entering another cave or descending stairs, Rowena convinced the party that the heart of the enemy lie down into the rift.

Descending the stairs, the group noticed many large snow drifts, jagged ice, some blue florescent mist above small areas of the ice and a misty haze through the rift. Rowena melted one of the snow drifts. The rest of the party was a bit distracted. Rowena convince the group to descend further.

Two of the snow drifts were well disguised white puddings, that spouted pseudopods and surprise attacked the heroes, engulfing and digesting them on a few occasions. Fire did extra damage against the white puddings. Every time the puddings were hit by weapons, they split and created another spawn. Despite this difficult battle, none of the heroes were knocked unconscious, but much of the energy and resources (heal surges) were spent in the battle. Rowena and Ja’Elle took care of several pudding spawn. Kissandi and Bui did a lot of damage to the larger puddings. Tyzzer directed many attacks by his allies and was digested twice, taking a lot of damage in the battle. During the battle, Kissandi spotted two frost giants stationed on a ledge 100’ above whose eyes were fixed on an ice dome not too much further to the south. Ja’Elle got a feeling that danger awaited not too far away to the north, too.

As the battle concluded, Tyzzer received a mental message from Elrilmarioum, shared the gist of it with the party and then responded telepathically as part of the sending ritual originated from Elrilmarioum.

Elrilmarioum: “Nan wishes you well. Mission is recover battle plans from Jarl Grugnur, who coordinates Snurre’s raids. Vaald offers end hostilities if Grugnur killed. Determine genuineness.”

Tyzzer: We are at cusp of frost rift. Will find plans and try to talk to Vaald. Will kill Jarl fo’ sho’. Stay strong!

The group posted lookouts, Ja’Elle to the south watching the frost giant watchers and others near the base of the stairs. After a short rest, the heroes have healed up and are ready to go.

Which way will the heroes head next? What dangers await?

We’ll find out next time.

Party Gold = 66,145 g.p.
 (owe Ja’Elle’s taylor 500 g.p. more when receive final product)
Feb 13, 994 at 11:00 p.m.

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Visions, Riddles, and a Shortcut to the Rift
June 29, 2013

Between sessions…
Fyrai summons each of the player characters into a small room to receive questions. Based on answers to those questions, each character is given a challenge.

Starting the session…
Feb 9, 994 at 8:30 am
Glint & Tegan both dead are being carted along by the sheep from the stone giants.

In Tyzzer and Ja’Elles’s vision, Tyzzer is a newly crowned king facing many challenges. Ja’Elle tells Tyzzer that this is the chance to take out the dragon. Tyzzer, convinced by Ja’Elle and the Highways and Byways Chair, decides to personally join in an attempt to destroy the dragon, forgoing other threats including finishing the threat behind the giant raids, a seemingly much more powerful threat in devils, and the ongoing concerns about elves.

In Bui & Rowena’s vision, Bui and Rowena make their way through Dis part of Hell. Choking on ash, they make great progress towards a source of power. Bui decides the source of power will be better than his prayers in saving multitudes of lost souls. Near the goal, Bui distracts devils and sacrifices himself so Rowena can reach the power source. Rowena puts on a helm of unfathomable power even though she knows it will not help her free the lost souls.

In Kissandi’s vision, she and Ja’Elle make their way through a crypt full of countless undead. In the name of the Raven Queen, Kissandi heroically takes out several undead before succumbing to the never ending horde.

After the visions, Fyrai and Thorbalt are somewhat satisfied and feel they can trust the heroes enough to share the wealth of the ancient empire with the group. But before sharing, the group must solve some puzzles.

Dragon Puzzle – Thorbalt tells the party that Bahamut will grant you protection if you solve the riddle. The party descends a staircase and enters a square room made of sandstone. The far wall has a 10′×10′ engraving of a dragon head with a black crystal in the center, a red crystal in the top, a blue crystal on the left, and a white crystal on the right. Runes are engraved above the dragon head.

A translucent rod lies on the ground.

Rowena uses her ritual and read the runes. They read in draconic, “Thrice blessed fire protects thy flesh against Adaelantar’s wrath.”

Kissandi, Bui, and Rowena are able to change the color of the rod. The party figures out that using different colors on the rod and touching it to the crystals on the engraving have different effects. Pretty quickly the party is able to turn all the exterior crystals to red. The center crystal is touched. Having solved the puzzle, the stone wall creaks open. The adventurers move into the hidden chambers as the dust settles. A wave of fire engulfs the room and the party. Nobody is hurt. All are energized, gaining the effects of an extended rest and regaining lost healing surges from their earlier visions. Not only this, but Glint and Tegan return to life!

Fyrai is impressed and now challenges the party to three riddles. For each riddle solved, the group will receive an additional reward.

3 Riddles – the group solves all three very quickly.

Riddle One given by Thorbalt:
I am all on my own,
Wounded by iron weapons and scarred by swords.
I often see battle.
I am tired of fighting.
I do not expect to be allowed to retire from warfare
Before I am completely done for.
At the wall of the city, I am knocked about
And bitten again and again.
Hard edged things made by the blacksmith’s hammer attack me.
Each time I wait for something worse.
I have never been able to find a doctor who could make me better
Or give me medicine made from herbs.
Instead the sword gashes all over me grow bigger day and night.

Answer: A shield – what you must provide the world

Riddle Two said by Thorbalt & Fyrai in unison:
Turn us on our backs.
And open up our stomachs. You will be the wisest of men.
Though at start a lummox.

Answer: A book – do not forget your studies

Riddle Three given by Fyrai:
I am, I’m not. I visit young and old,
Some I make timid and some I make bold,
Unwise is the one who pokes fun at me.
Beware, for I am a shadow of thee.

Answer: Death – will come for all of us, be sure to equip your world to thrive without you.

Rowena comes up with a riddle that stumps Fyrai and Thorbalt. Answer: Teamwork. An extra reward is earned.

Rewards:

  • A room full of ingots, each worth 100 gp – the group is able to put 100 in the cart (total 10,000 gp)
  • 5 potions of vitality (each PC takes one)
  • a map to the Frost Giants lair in a great rift.
  • Ashes of Royal Hubris x3 LVL 15 consumable (Kissandi takes all 3)
  • Symbol of Battle LVL 15 (Bui takes it)
  • Obsidian Sliver LVL 18 (Rowena takes it and gains the elemental origin)
  • Orb of Drastic Resolutions LVL 18 (Rowena takes it)
  • Information about the ancient dragonborn empire called Lantheon (Tyzzer learns more)

Lantheon (ancient dragonborn empire) myths/history learned (some from Tyzzer’s memory of his historical studies, some from Fyrai and Thorbalt):
Info: (learned last time with history check by Tyzzer is highlighted in yellow)
Long before Terkent, Rhendlich, Mar-Dir, and all of today’s continents, there were ancient empires. One of those was controlled by the dragonborn who worshipped Bahamut and lived on both sides of what you call the King’s Mountains. Many races existed in peace for many years. It was called Lantheon.

Many lords ruled. There were no kings. The lords needed to rely on one another for trade, for alliance against anything evil, and help in time of need. This worked to varying degrees, mostly very well for quite some time.

The ancient empires were before Millus Adreus and the elven written history on this continent.

For many years, under the rule of the Lantheon lords,there was a general peace and many thrived. It is when secrets crept in that the foundation crumbled, and crumbled fast. Backroom deals were made, leaders tried to preserve their power with better deals and select allies, not considering or sometimes intentionally harming others, even friends. In some cases a blind eye was turned. In others, rulers joined in on the corruption. Soon, many evils that had been for generations repressed, emerged again in strength until the empire collapsed under its own weight. We do not wish to see this happen again, but fear the process has already started over.

Nobody knows the specifics of what led to the corruption that meant the downfall of Lantheon, but there are many guesses, many centered around:

  1. The lords alliances broke down into petty land grabbing and fear
  2. Outsiders penetrated the leadership
  3. Faith in Bahamut dwindled

No matter what led to it, the lords of the Lantheon fell and haven’t been heard of for ages.

Fyrai and Thorbalt tell you they are the current generation of two families that have been set to guard their treasure and knowledge.

They hope to find the clues to the fall of the empire and hopefully one day bring it back to prominence in this land. They hope that you can help restore today’s world.

Choices made

  1. Not to return to civilization to touch base with leaders of the Silver Hand, the Sojourners, the Woodland Justice Network, or any other allies to give and get information. Forgoing checking in with those who sent you on the mission or finding out any more about your mission(s), the group chose to save time and avoid more raids by giants by plunging directly towards the newly learned location of the frost giants.
  2. To go directly to the rift where the frost giants live and attempt to lay waste to them.
  3. To send Tegan (Glaive) back to help Glint return home. They took a dimension door created by Rowena to the university in Lambasa. They were to deposit your money in a safe spot, Glint was to take his pre-determined cut of the money, and Tegan was to walk Glint back to his home near the edge of the King’s Mountains. Tyzzer told Tegan and Glint to tell Elrilmarioum and members of the Silver Hand whose paths they cross that the party is taking the attack to the frost giants at their rift and to tell them the party’s plans.

The heroes know frost giants are strategists and are evil, but do not know precise goals and have no particular quests as they proceed. They presume that the goal is to wipe out the frost giants and are confident in their ability to do this.

It takes three days and nights to traverse deeper into the King’s Mountains before the heroes find the location of the frost giants and are able to locate a cave a safe distance away.

FROST GIANT INTRO -
Your exhausting trek through the King’s Mountains ends before an icy rift that plunges hundreds of feet – a cold and cruel abyss. Steps carved into the north end of the rift split into two sets of stairs that descend the western and eastern faces of the rift, ending at a series of wide, icy ledges. From those ledges, tunnels lead into the faces of the rift. Below each precipice, white mist obscures the bottom of the chasm."

You found a nearby, but hidden cave. You discussed finding a raiding group, but decided instead to approach the rift at nightfall. You waited until night.

The rift is freezing cold with howling winds.

You descended down stairs on the north side of the rift.

Ja’Elle scouted ahead along a ledge slightly to east side of the northern part of the rift, called the group down to a cave face while he investigated.

After hearing two giants playing down a passage to the north, Ja’Elle discovered 2 (?) or more winter wolves sleeping in a passage to the south. The group quietly entered the cave.

Ja’Elle and Kissandi tried to quietly approach the part of the cave with the wolves. A loud crunch made by Kissandi likely woke the wolves…

Total Party Loot (most stored in civilization at “safe” locations) = 66,145 g.p. (owe Ja’Elle’s taylor 500 g.p. more when receive final product)
Current Date & Time = Feb 13, 994 at 8:30 pm

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Kissandi's Second Prayer and Unusual Guardians of an Ancient Dragonborn Empire
June 15, 2013

Feb 9, 994 at 8:00 a.m.

Minion Pyramid Scheme & The Hall of Dragons
Ja’Elle & Kissandi each get a boon for their reflections on last episode. Both selected the fortune Let’s Try That Again.

Upon entering the outpost area, the heroes heard the voices of Thorbalt, a dwarf, along with a female cackling gnome. Facing various and plentiful minion enemies, following Kissandi’s quick thinking and advice, the heroes figured out how to deactivate the replenishing of the minion groups and won the fight. Ja’Elle, despite going off on his own and getting separated from the rest of the party survived the encounter. Thorbalt and the gnome escaped. The heroes took 10 minutes to rest and recover before following where they believed the dwarf and the gnome were calling them to go. Through a hall of dragons, the heroes nearly bypassed the trap, fighting an animated colossus head and hand, along with 4 stirge swarms that emerged from the dragon mouths when the trap was triggered as Bui slipped off the rope while trying to stay above the pressure plates.

The group bested the first two of three challenges set forth by Thorbalt and the female gnome. Tegan had the life sucked out of him by stirges and has been added to the cart with Glint, pulled by the sheep. Rowena is ready to rejoin the fray. Everyone else is hurting pretty good. The heroes made it through the minion horde and the hall of dragons. We’ll see what the third challenge presents and if the heroes can earn the trust of Thorbalt and the gnome next time…

KISSANDI’S SECOND PRAYER:

My Lord:

I know that you have a purpose for each of these beings I travel with. They each serve a function- as do I. That is to allow the halfling the opportunity to destroy those who might oppose you. My faith is only strengthened when I am reminded that while two among us lead during times of communication and negotiation, it is I that must take control during times of conflict and challenge.

Thank you for giving me the strength to remind the “Warlord” to think of his lessons to remember how the Trickster works. Thank you also for reminding me to command the priest to let me do looking. Sometimes I wonder if his god has only given him one strength – albeit a powerful one.

I at times believe there is hope for the bald elf, but she too often takes our leave. Is she with us? Please give me a sign.

As far as the little one is concerned, I am continually amazed and know that you have chosen the correct vessel for delivering your vengeance, when I witness him getting himself into and out of trouble. I am honored that I have been picked to be his deliverer.

Please give me strength during our third test.

Forgive me for the brevity of this prayer as we must press on – but this you already know your magnificence.

K

Paused on Feb 9, 994 at 8:30 a.m.
Kissandi retains Let’s Try That Again fortune card, but needs to use it during this side quest.
Glint has been dead a few days. Tegan just died.
One encounter past milestone, three past extended rest.
Current Party Gold: 62,345 g.p. (owe Glint (dead) or his family 6,000 g.p. more after Feb 12; owe Ja’Elle’s taylor 500 g.p. more when receive final product)

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Deeper into the King's Mountains
April 25, 2013

Feb 4, 994 at 10:00 p.m.

Group just leveled up to LVL 15.

The group attempted to deal with the tenebrous assassins, but kept their cool to stay on good terms with Thane Arnak and Utanu, the three-eyed stone giant seer.

Venturing to find the ingots with the company of four goats and a small wagon, the group followed the directions of a stone giant and journeyed for four days deeper into the King’s Mountains. Mostly, the group stayed on course. On two occasions, the group got off the path and encountered troubles that presented challenges. Both challenges were easily met, but Glint was killed. His body preserved by Bui, the group continued on. The group left off approaching the presumed destination.

Today’s episode is told through the eyes of a few characters:

Kissandi:
I am Kissandi. I am cool. The Raven Queen is cooler.

The fools from the tenebrous cabal were allowed to live so that I might advance the wishes of the RQ here on Terkent. Soon enough they will feel the fate of her never ending winter.

Once again I allowed the talkers to waste their time and breath. It led us to an exploration through mountain passes. Are those others blind? Oh well. I saw many of the potential problems and even snuck through areas that were of no consequence to the the RQ. When my blade was needed I was more than up to the task. I must admit I find a strange attraction to the woman man Tyzzer. He has allowed me to see weaknesses in our foes defenses that I would have not noticed otherwise allowing extra attacks. Once he even shouted out a flaw as I flew past a gargoyle allowing me multiple attacks. The landing was not very smooth but I am working on that less important feat of skill even as we speak.

Ja’Elle:
As the party made its way toward and into the mountains, Tyzzer went to great lengths to demonstrate his athletic prowess. As impressive as Tyzzer’s displays were, he always found that Ja’Elle was one step ahead of him performing ever so slightly more impressive athletic displays. What’s more is Ja’Elle’s displays added just enough acrobatic panache to wow even the most hard to please audiences.

The gargoyle leader grabbed Rowena and carried her high up to a perch atop a wall. Despite struggling mightily, Rowena was neither strong enough nor limber enough to free herself from the gargoyle’s tightening grip. Ja’Elle saw what was happening, and knew he needed to act quickly to free her. He devised a plan, and sprung into action. His dagger became a blur as he made swift, sweeping attacks. His first attack found its mark, as one of the lesser gargoyles was hit and exploded into countless crystal shards. With lightning speed, Ja’Elle’s dagger was airborne again and heading directly for the gargoyle leader. He never saw it coming, and the sheer force of the weapon plunging into his midsection knocked him off the wall and sent him hurtling toward a crevice in the floor. The gargoyle was able to regain his balance quickly and save himself from what could have been a life-threatening fall, but in the process was not able to maintain his hold on Rowena. She was now free to start launching attacks from atop the wall. Meanwhile, Ja’Elle returned to his position in the shadows to await another opportunity to strike.

The party found itself surrounded by four umber hulks that had burrowed up from below the ground. Thanks to Tyzzer’s keen senses, he was able to alert the party before the ambush could be sprung. Ja’Elle jumped into action immediately in the hope of turning the tables on the umber hulks and catching them off guard. He dashed across the battlefield, taunting each umber hulk he passed. His quick movement and aggressive actions left them bewildered. The three umber hulks that were goaded into trying to attack Ja’Elle wound up attacking themselves instead. Unfortunately, only one of them landed an attack, but Ja’Elle was able to further use the confusion to his advantage as he moved to better position on the battlefield.

Ja’Elle had been waiting for this moment. An umber hulk who was not yet bloodied had left his flank exposed, so Ja’Elle decided to make him pay for the mistake. Moving from his hiding place, Ja’Elle quickly flanked the umber hulk and launched a brutal attack. A well-placed blow rendered the beast unconscious. Ja’Elle then followed up with a coup de grace that dealt devastating damage to the prone enemy.

Tyzzer:
Tyzzer took the lead in the discussions with the Thane and Utanu, and was very diplomatic and kept us in good standing with both giants (although some aggression might have helped us find out more about Utanu’s motives). He was also able to use his athletic abilities and crafting skills to help us navigate the tunnels. In the fights he just did his normal thing: he got pummeled and gave orders.

Current Date and Time: Feb 9, 994 at 8:00 a.m.
Current Party Gold: 62,345 g.p. (owe Glint (dead) or his family 6,000 g.p. more after Feb 12; owe Ja’Elle’s taylor 500 g.p. more when receive final product)

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The Ghal-Thrad
April 27, 2013

Feb 4, 994 ~ 5:00 pm

Group is awarded a milestone for bypassing the gargoyles successfully.

Kissandi confronts Dmitri, a shadowy humanoid who serves Merlian Saar. Kissandi notices markings on Dmitri and asks him if he serves the Raven Queen. Attempting to pull rank on him, Kissandi draws the attention of both of the tenebrous humanoids.

The group decides to have Glint wear the cap of disguise to pass Merlian Saar, who he would recognize, in hopes that Merlian will not recognize him.

Tegan and Glint join the group.

Glint informs the group that the Stone Giants suggested one of two paths, either sneaking by the throne room on an open-faced ledge or going through the gardens and trying to befriend Shoggo and Zorsa.

In an attempt to be fun guys, the group goes to the gardens. Quickly hearing shriekers piercing shrieks the group huddles in the doorway and notices a riot of fungi filling the cavern. Colorful glowing fungi grow on the walls, and heaps of refuse have given birth to towering mushrooms, broad toadstools, and carpets of thick, moss-like mold. Tiny cave crickets and beetles skitter around the garden, and fireflies flit about in great numbers. The cavern is dimly lit by the fireflies and glowing fungus.

The group initiates talks with Shoggo, a hunched male stone giant who wields a moldy great-club, carries a bulky sack, and wears a curtain of black mold as a cloak. Shoggo has various breeds of fungus growing on his head, face, arms, and shoulders. An enormous beetle with wicked mandibles and a large bell-shaped protrusion on its head follows him around as though it is his pet.

After Bui and Tyzzer diplomatically encourage Shoggo that they are there to help, while Kissandi and Bui notice the amazing plant life in the cavern, Zorsa, a female stone giant wielding a glaive, her flesh encrusted with fungus, wearing a breastplate and greaves made of insect chitin enters the conversation. She carries two small crates filled with carrion crawler hatchling swarms.

The stone giants are quickly convinced that the group’s intentions are not to harm the thane, but in fact to help. Shoggo and Zorsa put their lives on the line and give information to the party that provides two options. The first is to convince the thane that they serve the Elder Elemental Eye, because the thane believes he is a champion of the Elder Elemental Eye. The second option is to try to destroy the stone that was unearthed that seems to be controlling the thane.

The group chooses to go into the cavern and try to destroy the stone.

Before the party leaves, the party accepts the giants offer of Deathwort, Spore Bombs, Gorgonband, and Dragonheart Pods. The Deathwort is eaten right away, giving all a 1 item bonus to death saving throws for 24 hours. The Spore Bombs can be hurled as a standard action: area burst 1 within 5; +17 v Fort; 2d65 poison damage and target is slowed (save ends); exploding bomb creates a zone that lasts until the end of the thrower’s next turn – any creature that ends its turn in the zone takes 10 poison damage. The Gorgonbane, when applied to a petrified creature (standard action) restores the creature to flesh after 5 minutes. The Dragonheard Pods are eaten right away and give 10 temporary HP that last for 24 hours.

The group enters the cavern behind the throne room. It is brightly torchlit. Bubbling pools of hissing liquid surround massive columns of rock that support the 50-foot high ceiling. Dangling above the pools are wooden cages, some of which have been eaten away, as if by acid, others of which hold coughing, malnourished prisoners. Curtains conceal exits to the north and west, and 15-foot high ledges overlook the cavern to the north. To the south, the floor plunges into a jagged pit. Four skull-faced phantoms fly above the pit, their ghostly tentacles trailing behind them.

Kissandi uses and action point to charge and obliterate one of the spectral terrors. She notices in the 20 foot deep pit below, a large egg of smooth purple stone with black veins. Rubble surrounds it. Images reflected in the stone’s polished surface are horribly deformed. The stone immediately replaced the spectral terror Kissandi destroyed.

Tyzzer hurries to the rescue of one of the prisoners, leaping across the acid onto the wall, swinging the hanging cage to safety.

Kissandi gracefully tumbles into the pit to damage the Stone of Madness, the Ghal-Thrad. She calls upon the Raven Queen to help remove the power from this stone.

Tegan is ordered to help Kissandi. Ja’Elle scouts the ledges and then hustles to help Kissandi. Bui goes to help Kissandi, too.

Feeling the Ghal-Thrad being attacked, Arnak and those who served him entered the cave from the throne room. Five galeb duhrs were summoned. Bui tossed a spore bomb that slowed all five of them. Over the course of the fight, Tegan destroyed many of the galeb durh, once sliding down into the fissure to smash one.

Arnak threw rocks and did some heavy damage to the party.

Thundergore, the steel gorgon, charged in and did tremendous damage to Bui/Tyzzer. Bui quickly made it so Thundergore could not attack.

Then, Bui significantly reduced how much damage Arnak could do.

With Kissandi and Ja’Elle in the fissure for most of the fight, the spectral terrors tried unsuccessfully to keep them away from the Stone of Madness. With the power of the Raven Queen, Kissandi did immense damage to Stone and helped Ja’Elle find vulnerable cracks in the surface of the stone. Eventually upon Tyzzer’s battle command, Kissandi dealt the final flow to the Ghal-Thrad. The stone exploded damaging all near it, obliterating all the spectral terrors, a couple galeb duhr, and knocking Ja’Elle unconscious.

This couldn’t have come at a more opportune time, as Thundergore was finally going to be able to attack again, and Kissandi achieved the 12th success in the skills challenge while perched precariously with two failures. Another failure would have meant restarting the skills challenge, but this time in the midst of a difficult fight that was going in the wrong direction.

The thane came to his senses and called off his allies from the fight. Ja’Elle was healed.

The group gathered and tried to convince Thane Arnak to fracture the alliance he held with the fire and frost giants. Reminding him the alliance with these evil giants could not be trusted and that living in harmony with the surrounding creatures was important was convincing, but not quite enough to overcome the threats of repercussions from the other giants for fracturing the alliance. Coming very close to convincing him, the party couldn’t quite close the deal. Thane Arnak did make vague promises about limiting the number of stone giants he sends to bolster Snurre, the fire giant chief’s army. He did promise to reconsider his position if Jarl Grugnur, the frost giant leader, is eliminated. The death of the frost giant jarl would be enough to make Arnak sever his alliance with Snurre.

Thane Arnak thanks you for freeing him from the control of the the Stone of Madness and rewards you with his personal treasure. This includes:

  • +4 flamedrinker plate armor (LVL 19 item)
  • golden drinking horn studded with obsidian (value 5000 gp)
  • bejeweled alabaster pyramid (value 5000 gp)
  • 10 100 gp ignots stamped with imperial emblem of an ancient and ruined dragonborn empire (value 1000 gp)

He also tells the group that the ignots in his hoard are part of a larger trove hidden in the mountains. He divulges the location of this lost dragonborn trove.

The group asked Thane Arnak if it would be okay to destroy the tenebrous ones serving Merlian Saar. Arnak said that Merlian was coming to warn him of the party’s entry and attack on the Ghal-Thrad and likely were watching the whole thing, probably having fled at this point. Arnak said your dealing with Merlian and the shadowy figures serving him were yours, and he would not stand in the way.

The players level up to Level 15.

Current Date and Time: Feb 4, 994 at 10:00 p.m.
Current Party Gold: 62,350 g.p. (owe Glint 6,000 g.p. more after Feb 12; owe Ja’Elle’s taylor 500 g.p. more when receive final product)

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Unexpected Alliances
March 29, 2013

Feb 4, 994 at ~ 3:45 a.m.

Quick Recap = Impressing the adamantine dragon Ezevon and two stone giant cavestalkers, you have made progress, avoiding an earth titan and finding the likely villainous peace delegation on the way to the throne room has presumably positioned you much closer to meeting the thane.

Longer Story:
Diplomatic efforts led by Bui were a success with Ezevon who seemed impress by the group’s prowess and their offerings. Information about a better route to the thane was gained. A safe resting place was granted by Ezevon.

We learned Ezevon is allies, possibly even friends with the Thane. The Thane is in the warrens to the SW. The Humanoid group came through but did not leave and Ezevon does not think they were here for peace negotiations (maybe the giants told us this?).

The group took an extended rest.

Tegan “Glaive” was left to recover more fully. He is not dead yet. He’s getting better.

Glint requested more protection, stating he does not have the strength to survive another hit.

After the extended rest, Ja’Elle scouts and Tyzzer talked more with Ezevon.

Ja’Elle gains 6500 gp in numerous coins from the haystacks where the stone giants slept.

The group decides to head south, southwest. Ja’Elle uses the last ungeant of darkvision to scout ahead into a forest of stalagmites. One of the stalagmites is actually a roper and surprises Ja’Elle. Ja’Elle shouts for help. The others come to his aid. Another roper emerges. Two stone giant cavestalkers lob lightning geodes and then regular boulders at the party.

Well into a difficult battle, Kissandi stands alone vs. one crag roper and two stone giants. She uses bracers of speed to weaken the roper enough to allow Bui’s standard of the silver dragon to finish the roper. Ja’Elle and Bui recover quickly and help turn the tide. Tyzzer, on death’s door, survives, too.

Together, Bui & Tyzzer convince the stone giants to stop the fight, that the party did not come here to kill stone giants, but to broker a peace. The stone giants offer to help the party. The group finds a LVL 16 Horned Helm. Tyzzer keeps it for now.

We learned what bad guys are where and the most direct path to the Thane. Gargoyles should leave us alone if the giants are with us. They will help guide us and pass monsters but will not ignore other giants or orders given to them involving us.

We also learned from the cavestalkers that the female stone giant leader may actually be acting on behalf of the thane.

Avoiding a titan, the group takes the route east past numerous gargoyles perched on ledges that blend in well with the surrounding caves and water source. The gargoyles do not attack because of the stone giant escort.

A large block on wheels is moved to the side and the group continues south. The giants do not want to accompany the group as they approach a cavern currently inhabited by humanoids the giants say are working with the thane.

Ja’Elle scouts ahead again and overhears Merlian Saar, a noble from Unrick who was sent on a peace mission, apparently scrying on someone outside of the caves.

Ja’Elle, and soon later the rest of the group minus Glint and the two stone giants enter the conversation with Merlian Saar, his two goliath bodyguards and two female tenebrous (shadowy) creatures.

We think Merlian seems skeevy and untrustworthy. We don’t know what deal he has going on but he certainly isn’t here on for peace negotiations.

Tegan “Glaive” is ready to rejoin us, and we are ready to move past Marlian Saar and his associates…

Current Date and Time: Feb 4, 994 at 5:00 p.m.
Current Party Gold: 51,350 g.p. (owe Glint 6,000 g.p. more after Feb 12; owe Ja’Elle’s taylor 500 g.p. more when receive final product)

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Out of the Darkness, Ezevon the Adamantine Dragon
March 8, 2013

Continuing the battle against the stone giants from last time…

Tyzzer did some cool shit in the fight and protected Ja’Elle.

The last giant ran into the darkness and the shrieker erupted again.

Kissandi killed the giant, only to see a large adamantine dragon swooping down out of the darkness to bite and grab her.

Fairly quickly all but Ja’Elle were trapped within ten feet of the dragon, Ezevon, and unable to move without the Ezevon’s wings knocking them flat. Ezevon’s ability to fly, his thunderous breath, and his reach continued to keep the party down. Despite this huge disadvantage, slowly but surely, the heroes bloodied Ezevon. Bui and Tegan were knocked unconscious.

Tyzzer, without a heal surge left and bloodied took a big risk and offered the dragon his weapons. After a negotiation, the Tyzzer gave the dragon an amulet, a magical hammer, and his bastard sword. Kissandi gave the dragon a ring of fireblazing. With this, Ezevon accepted, allowed Tyzzer to keep his bastard sword, and flew back into the darkness from whence he came.

Tyzzer waits 5 minutes and then heals the Bui and Tegan. The plan, as the group left it, was to send Tyzzer to talk with the dragon without Ja’Elle or Kissandi, in an effort to gain information about the stone giants.

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Warrens Part Two: It's Electric
February 16, 2013

Feb 3, 994 at 4:00 a.m.

The encounter with the stone giant raiding party has gone south…

We awoke in the middle of the night.

The stone giants meet us on the Kings Road. We tried to negotiate. It didn’t work. It looked like they wanted to fight us. Ja’elle hesitated. Tyzzer charged!

They fight back.

Ja’Elle kills all the big Giants (under the direction and coaching of Tyzzer)
Kissandi kills Krenshar and a Minion.

Bui gets the remaining two minions to surrender.

Bui enters into negotiations vs them, with the translative services of Glint.

Bui offers safety to the minions.

We learn that Belastraya has been put into position to order raids. The Thane is her brother. For some weird reason, Belastraya has been taking more power than maybe she should.

It doesn’t seem likely to Glint that we could diplomatically negotiate with the stone giants. He suggests that we would pretend to represent some other group.

We tie up the two younglings.

Glint and Kissandi engage in deep and meaningful conversation. Glint urges the party to get to the Thane.

A rider approaches. He asks how we are doing. It is Tegan Sell. He was sent by Nan Hornberg to find Tyzzer Zanine. He slaps his horse who runs off. He wants to serve Tyzzer. Stories of our renown have reached Glim. Tyzzer will take him under his wing.

We sleep with the giants.

Feb 4, 994 3am

Tyzzer moves the boulder at the back entrance to Howling Cragg. We move in towards the Warrens. Strength check. Success.

We move towards the lightning.

and then attack it. Kissandi shuts it down. Moves in and discovers Vortices. They attack us.

Tegan and Sara help us out.

We kill the wind.

There is a pile of geodes. 2 small piles of melon sized geodes.

And then Primus!!!

Kissandi soothed the sheep with a 33 nature check.

The stone giants are in the sheep room. We leave. The stone giants intimidate the sheep.

FIGHT

Using the tunnels of the warrens, the electric stalagmites, and some decisive tactics, the heroes seem to have an advantage against the stone giants. However, Glint has fallen again and piercing shrieking from the dark western room could mean that this battle is not won yet…


PAUSE -

Feb 4, 3:30 a.m.

Party Gold = 45,500 g.p.
Owe Glint 6,000 g.p. more after Feb 12
Upon receipt of item, Ja’Elle will owe the taylor 500 g.p.

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Entering the Warrens
February 1, 2013

ENTERING THE WARRENS
February 1, 994 at 11:00 p.m.

• We enter the warrens
• Ja’Elle scouts and see to the east is a large cavern with stalagmites emanating lighting and bright light. The cavern crackles with electricity (and danger!!!!)
• There is darkness to the west.
• Ja’Elle uses one of the unguents of darkvision so he can see in the dark. (Last for an hour)
• In the dark cavern there are two stalagmites. Farther on, there is a ledge. To the north there is a large stairway.
• We need some action. I’m starting to feel like I’m writing an old school text adventure.
• Ja’Elle hears bleating up the stairs, and there’s light up there.
o He checks it out and it’s sheep and carts and stuff. Seems like raid spoils.
• We head over to the ledge in the dark.
• Something up on the ledge shrieks and attacks Ja’Elle and misses.
o We retreat and the thing keeps shrieking for a while.
• We decide to head up the stairs and pretend that that’s what we meant to do all along.
• We all see the bleating sheep and carts with merchant emblems.
o Tyzzer recognizes the emblems as from the nearby towns of Pontatana and Ibium.
• Some more scouting.
o Ja’Elle finds a room with something in it that he can’t hear.
• We go up the stairs.
• We enter a hallway lined with large dour stone giants heads about 15-18 ft. tall. It goes both north and south from here.
• Bui, Tyzzer, and Glint do some dungeoneering and decide to head up and north.
• Ja’Elle goes ahead and we follow.
• At the top of the stairs, Ja’Elle sees several stone giants in front of a dais and throne. One of them is a stone cold chick. There’s also a really big boar. And a fluttering curtain – gotta watch out for that.
• Bui and Tyzzer try to talk to the woman giant.
o We say that we are advocates for the local towns of Unrick and Clan Ironcrown of the dwarves. She doesn’t like that we bring them up.
o We continue to talk to her, but she is not happy that we have invaded her Warrens.
o Negotiations inevitably break down and one of the guard/advisors goes inside to get more giants to hurt us. Clearly she will not be convinced with diplomatic efforts.
o We learn she is the Castellan of Howling Crag, meaning she is in charge while the Thane is gone.
o Looks like we’re gonna fight.
• Belastraya is able to teleport/meld into the stone of the cavern.
• Kissandi goes after Belastraya
• Ja’Elle gets himself surrounded by 5 stone giants and starts doing some damage.
• It seems like the other giants are not as fervent as Belastraya
• Bui finally intimidates the other giants into letting us flee, but they still have to follow Belastraya.
• We flee.
• Belastraya reappears and commands the giants to attack.
o They do.
o We run.
• Everyone stumbles a little bit on the way out, but with Tyzzer’s encouragements, Bui’s deterence of the enemy, and Kissandi’s and Ja’Elle’s guidance, we make it through the first section.
• We continue to hustle out of the Crag, and everyone contributes to the escape.
o This time, Tyzzer knows which way to slide the door and throws it open for everyone to get out. He flips off Ja’Elle (in a friendly way) as he passes.
• Plans:
• Sneak back into the Crag?
• Wait for a raid on a merchant caravan and question them?
• We decide to wait for them to come out the main entrance to ambush a raiding party with the intent of questioning one of them about the Thane.
• One day passes.
• A raiding party appears in the middle of the night.
• Tyzzer and Bui address them.
• They demand we all show ourselves.
o We do, Ja’Elle hesitantly.
• Negotiations aren’t going well.

Now February 3, 4 a.m.
Gold = 45,500 g.p. (owe Glint 6,000 g.p. more at end of two weeks of service at end of Feb 12, owe Ja’Elle’s taylor 500 g.p. more when receive final product)

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