Isle of lendore

[Day 93-98] Coral and Locathah

Drasin green scaled human Dragonfire Adept level 4
Rzogas hobgoblin Swordsage level 3 (ECL 0)
Pyfiravin raptoran Druid level 4
Terent kobold female Monk level 3, Aerynn elf Rogue level 3
Josh human Fighter level 4
Absent hélas:
unknown spellcaster – just saying at this point in the adventure, an arcane caster with fireball would be great. Short sighted view, but… we Need you!

[Day 93 almost] We’re heading north up the East coast of Lendore on our way back to Restenford. We stop at the bridge just above Restenford itself and I glide off the Skate and head over to see Almax, while the rowers turn her around. I take the shark statue of Sekolah with me, and use it as part of the payment for the reincarnation for Terent. Drasin coughs up the rest in gems and whatnot. While I’m gone, right there at the bridge, the rest of the party is accosted by Aerynn, Terent’s friend. He’s kind of hard to see at first, but Drasin spots him and they have a talk. It appears Terent wants Aerynn to help us out, and Aerynn is willing.

Terent is reincarnated as a female kobold monk, and goes off to discover the kobold world. [Unknown to us over the next thirty days or so: She gets rejected by the kobold clans and returns to Almax in Restenford for jobs and tasks to do in the name of good. Almax has Terent running errands, collecting pieces for the gnarliest bong, and she is returning from Garrotten when she is ambushed by the Steel Vipers (the mercenary group, the leader of whom, Luka, gave us our first task in this whole adventure) who are attacking a lone kobold. Terent doesn’t fight, tries to insist she is not an enemy, and is killed. Almax learns of this, and retrieves Terent and reincarnates her again, this time as a male dwarf.]

We leave on the Skate back up the Resten, and head down the coast to Mochdrev to return the statue of Deep Sashelas to the church. On the way, I call a poisonous coral sea snake as my animal companion. It is a beautiful creature of rich red, yellow and black, about six feet long. Aerynn knew Terent for about a month before Terent joined us. They became fast friends and enjoyed lots of discussion and debates together. We negotiate with Aerynn to let him use the ring of invisibility and Josh’s boots, to enhance his abilities in assisting us. I ask only that I be able to use the ring when seems necessary, and he and Josh work out an equivalent arrangement. We see some extremely large great white sharks, but we don’t stop. As we arrive in Mochdrev, we are greeted by Cyric, the aquatic elf, who seems surprised and not completely happy to see us. We ask Aerynn to follow him and see what he is about, but all we learn is that he is engaged in taking people deep sea fishing – not of much use there. When we take the statue of Deep Sashelas back to the church, they are still cleaning up the wreckage. They are very happy to have the statue returned and offer us a coffer of silver pieces. It comes in very handy and we purchase supplies there, two mirrors (steel), and gillyweed – an airweed used to allow us to breathe underwater for 10 minutes at a time.

The ship continues to resupply for the rest of the day, so we depart the following day [Day 97], South along the coast. We succeed in taking advantage of a very good North wind, and make it 56 miles down the coast before nightfall. The following day [Day 98] we reach the southern most tip of Lendore’s East coast and turn westwards and back up toward the bay where Sucia is to be found. I go to sleep at 4 am to, and the others awaken to, a cold day, snowy, and stormy. Drasin catches snow flakes.

As we reach the cove where the ruins of Sucia are, we see the wide mouth of the river. The land has fallen into the water, and most of the town is partially underwater. The buildings are submerged 5 feet or more. The river mouth is wide, perhaps 500 feet across, Sucia on the west side. We spend a couple of hours watching the ruined town for signs of habitation. And though we see a Merrow, and a couple of sharks, we don’t see other signs. We decide to check some of the larger buildings for records. There are two groups of larger buildings, one closer to the land, not so submerged, and the other closer to the river. We head in a couple of launch boats for one of the further ones, since we think the records are less likely to be damaged farther from the river. We circle around much of Sucia, and when we get there we are attacked by a crab, a very large crab. It knocks out the sea snake, but we end up enjoying a meal of crab and seaweed (no rice to be found unfortunately), before exploring the building. As we explore, we learn this is a large house of some previous important person. This isn’t where we want to be at all.

And then I remember! I have the Yuanese map of Sucia. Drasin can’t believe we forgot we had it. Rzogas didn’t remember either, and they were the two with me when we found it. I pull it out, and we pinpoint where the building that holds the archives and records is. So we retrace our steps (or paddles), and travel into the city along narrow water alleys only 15 feet wide. The launch boats take us as far as they can, sculling, which is slow. And then we get out and slosh through the water, all except Rzogas of course, who is astride his dire wolf. The water is deeper, perhaps 4 feet.

We don’t get far when we meet a group of five Locathah, red and white scales, maybe 5 feet tall, fish faces, fish folk in sharkskin leather armour carrying long spears and crossbows. We attempt to talk to them, explain we come in peace. The don’t seem very interested, and attack us. Despite our disadvantage in the water, we succeed in killing them. We pull the bodies up onto one of the buildings. I go ahead up top, to scout out the way, and I see the smoke from three fires. I use the ring of invisibility and check the two closest. In each there is a fire being doused, fish folk donning armour and weapons (in one case three, and in the other eight people.) I head back and we work out a way to go around them, and then to move faster. By setting alternating grappling hooks with ropes that those in the water could pull themselves along with, we double our speed. At one point Drasin spots a Locathah sentry, but Josh succeeds in taking it down with his cross bow. We take it up to the roof also, and continue on our way. We are about three quarters of the way to the archives, when we here drums. We need to find a place to defend ourselves as we will be sitting ducks against a large attack. From the building top, we see a three story building that looks in decent shape. We succeed in all getting up into the building, including the dire wolf. We hide in silence. Shortly after a group of sentry Locathah swim through. They use crossbows and they move fast. Of the three fish folk, one gets away and shortly after we hear drums.

We know we need to take a stand here. Our estimates of their fighting force is between 80 and 160 strong. We need to come up with some tactics to survive. On the ground level is about 4 feet of water, part of the floor to the second storey is missing, and at that level are Drasin, Rzogas, Josh, Coral the sea snake, and Rzogas’ dire wolf. On the top storey are Aerynn and Pyfiravin.. It is about 4 pm[, now day 99]. We may also need either to go for help from the marines, or to scout out the archives and see if there is even anything there worthy of our time.

Pyf

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[Day 6- A brown magical tome to recover

Pyfiravin here,
Once Terent and I recovered from the poisonous gas, we purchased a flask of holy water which Josh is carrying (to throw at any more undead we encounter). I had heard that getting strong spices to add to the holy water would help burn the undead, but Restenford is very lacking in any kind of hot peppers or hot spices. It was most disappointing. (and although Al’lien and I had reminded ourselves, we forgot to purchase cards, playing cards.)

So we headed back to the guardhouse, and removed the flagstones, and let ourselves down the hole. Marlow continues to carry the everburning torch, as he can function using only one hand, unlike the rest of us. Several times as we explored, mostly Al’lien with his strong sense of smell, and occasionally all of us smelt the scent of vanilla.

We went back past the kitchen to the room where the dead rat is. We investigated the room to the right. There was nothing in the room but a table and chairs, a target and some rusty knives. Al’lien broke down a locked door that led to a very long tunnel. We decided not to pursue it right away, but went back to the room with the dead rat. On the opposite side of the room, the wall didn’t appear quite right. It turned out the wall was a concealed door. Behind it, when we eventually worked our way through it, were three chests. The first held 4pp, 77gp, and 210sp. The second chest held an empty box. The third chest, a pair of boots (which I tried on, but they didn’t fit me. Turns out they are magical. Don’t recall what we did with them.) and a small velvet pouch containing 3 blood-stones, an emerald, and a diamond. (We tried appraising them, and we think they ’re worth between 500 and 550gp). Josh is carrying them.

Then we headed to the passageway beyond the dead rat. It was too big to step over. The passageway opened into an intersection. To our right was a cavern with rat nests, ahead was a cavern with a narrow passage only the rats could get through, to our left another cavern with a passageway leading off. We set up a defensive position in the intersection as we were attacked by many of these huge rats. It took a long time to kill them, there ended up being 19 of them. I felt uncomfortable coming into the rats’ territory and killing them all, when there was not a good reason to aggravate them. Several of us, Josh, Al’lien and wolf contracted a disease carried by the rats.

We had a bit of a debate before heading back in. I wasn’t sure I could wantonly kill the rats, just because I came into their space. It felt good to have a good discussion, we hadn’t done that in a while. When we headed back, I agreed to assist any of the group, my friends, but I didn’t want to kill any more rats.
We had cleared out the rats from the passage to the right, so we headed to the passage to the left. There didn’t appear to be any more rats coming from the passage dead ahead. I was hoping I could convince the rats not to attack, so I was in the lead. Suddenly we were surrounded by them, and they did come back through the centre passage. I managed not to fight any of them, although I healed Marlow. It felt good to be able to do something to help. We finally managed to regroup and fight the remaining rats off. We were just searching the space, and some of us looking to the passage continuing off to the left, when Lord Lankin (the camouflage elf) appeared. It is quite eerie how none of us can detect him, except Al’lien because Lord Lankin smelled strongly of vanilla.

Lord Lankin explained that someone had made off with the magical tome. In fact they managed to get to it before we even went down to search. He was willing to give us the healing belt as a recompense. He said a necromancer, who makes much use of undead, had taken the tome to a Yuanese Keep in some ruined fortifications to the North/Northwest of Restenford. There are bugbears there. Lord Lankin asked what we would accept to continue with this quest to retrieve the tome on behalf of the Lady of Brightwater. He took several suggestions, better armour for a couple of us. Other suggestions were made. He even thought he could get me another footbow. He is native to Lendore, and knows of Osprey Raptorans somewhere on islands not far away. He seems to be able to get us all sorts of things. I don’t understand his altruism. Why would someone charge us with something, and then compensate us when we haven’t achieved it. Lord Lankin took the time to explain a few things to me. The Lady of Brightwater wants this tome, not to use its magic, but for the prestige she gains. It is a kind of competition. Lord Lankin believes the necromancer may have taken the tome for another who is also engaged in this competition. This is quite a foreign concept to me. Lord Lankin did explain that he is on a kind of task, which he needs to fulfill, and so is willing to hire us to continue with this quest. He gave us an indication of the direction to head in, and agreed to do a reconnaissance of the keep to give us some idea ahead of time, of what we are up against.

First though we headed back to the Inn. Wolf and I are both afflicted by the rats’ bites, and need to heal. I was given the Healing Belt, and used it to heal. It is most effective, an amazing gift. We had found and took to a mage some pipes, which turn out to be Pipes of Sounding – ghost sound. Marlow said that with some research, and instruction, he could learn to make use of them. He kept them. While I was recovering, Marlow received a letter from Lord Lankin. He said we had missed a couple of items in the rat warren, and gave Marlow a cloak broach which makes him less vulnerable to attack, and a ring, that allows him to float down gently rather than falling.

Once we were healed up (and again without purchasing the playing cards), we headed out along the road. I didn’t want to go that way as it is treeless, and I need to keep practicing my flying, well gliding. So we went overland, which after discussion will take no longer than using the road. But, we ran into a group of gnolls. They were very powerful attackers with battle axes. I spent more time keeping people in one piece, including wolf, whom Al’lien saved from a vicious head splitting blow. The gnolls were very dangerous. We did find on them 42pp, and 60gp. We have reached the top of the first hill, going westwards. We are ready for a break, since the Healing Belt enjoyed much use. I am just waiting to float down this hill.

Pyf

Our DM was very patient with our comings and goings this game. The players of Josh, Al’lien and Pyfiravin started off the game, Marlow arrived a while later, then Terent showed up. Josh’s player had to leave on schedule, then we played a little more, went off to find something to eat, and came back and played the gnoll encounter. It made it long and a little awkward with the party composition changing. Hats off to him.

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[Day 6- ] Dungeons aren't for Druids

DM, Pyfiravin, Al’lien, Terent
Absent Josh Marlow

Well we went to Restenford, crossed the bridge, walked another 440 yards or so,and searched around the burnt out guard post as Lord Lankin the camouflage night elf suggested. There were the remains of a common room, a barracks, an armoury. Around the back (south entrance), was the remains of jail with cells, and a bedroom.
It took us a while to find the entrance, of course it was the last place we looked. We lifted up the flagstones in the bedroom, and found a hole down into the ground. We ended going up and down out of the hole a few times, back above ground, which is fine by me. Fortunately Al’lien had a rope, cause the hole was too small to glide through, and wolf needed to be lowered and raised. We’d recover, and purchase things like new spears, and other items, or sell off what we found. I managed to commission a new foot-bow, but it is going to take a long time to have it made by the boyer, and it cost a lot.
The place down there is dark as all get out, so we needed more sources of light (that was the first time we left), and it isn’t like the raptoran caves at all. First there is much too low a ceiling to properly spread and flap ones wings, the doorways are so narrow I need to keep my wings all tucked in. And the creatures down there are nothing I have ever seen before. They aren’t natural creatures at all. They don’t feel right. We succeeded in killing them all, although I’m not sure that is the right way to say it, since they were already back from the dead; I’m not sure what it is called to make them dead again. How Terent kept smashing them I don’t know, they are repulsive. There weren’t any plants that we saw. Which means I am having to use different spells. And not having a foot-bow, not that I can use it down there, was difficult, I was glad to go back up and get a sling at least.
The first cavern room was limestone with a somewhat shaped out room, and it had skeletons in it. They were hard to deal with. They didn’t lie quietly on the floor, or in their graves. They attacked us, and some of our weapons weren’t much use against them, as my spears and weapons like that just go through them. There was the remains of a chest in that room that held an ornate dagger, silver and obsidian hilt and sheath, with a leather belt, a gold medallion with a jade centrepiece on a chain, and a ducky little wooden box that unfortunately held a broken vial.
Al’lien put on the dagger, and when he did up the clasp on the belt, he was paralyzed. I tried to take it off him, and that paralyzed me too. Fortunately the paralysis didn’t last too long. We sold the dagger after that, and the gold medallion (we found out it was a golem bane medallion). Al’lien needs better armour, and I am trying to replace my foot-bow.
We opened the door to the next room and found it contained, the remains of a pantry and kitchen, a small hearth, and a rack that used to contain spears. Here we were attacked by zombies with heavy shields, long swords, and protected by scraps of chain mail, slow moving, and then ghouls, which had nasty claws and a dangerous bite. We managed to keep them from coming out of the kitchen at us, and fought them one at a time, so we could handle them. I think we would all have suffered much more otherwise.
The last attempt we had going underground took us through two doors that lead off the kitchen. The first room, on the left was the remains of a bedroom. Nothing of interest in it, except a secret door. When we opened it, the room filled with a greenish gas, and we suffered from a poison. Terent and I were weakened, slower to react. We went on ahead through the secret door though into a small room with nothing in it. It had another secret door into a very small room with a chest. We carried the chest out into the first room, where there was fresh air coming in from above. In the chest we found a small wax sealed vial. I tasted and smelt it. It was a strong cure. So I wrapped it in feathers and put it in my ducky little box and asked Al’lien to carry it. That way if I’m ever knocked out, he’ll hopefully be able to assist me.
Then we waited for the gas to clear, I did use my wings to waft it away, and then we headed for the right hand door. We again heard shuffling noises behind this door, so we used our now well planned strategy. Marlow stands well back and holds a light so we can see. Pyfiravin opens the door so that she is protected by it, Al’lien and Terent and wolf attack whatever comes through. If there is more than one creature, we shut the door so we only deal with one at a time. Unfortunately, although we could see the ghoul and the skeleton, neither came through the door. Al’lien went through first to attack the ghoul, Terent went for the skeleton. Wolf went next, and I was last to take on the ghoul with my spears.
When we had a chance to look around, we saw a short passage leading off into a small chamber, and then the passage continued beyond. There was a huge rat, dead in the passage. And there the chamber seems to be shaped by claws rather than tools. We decided to stop there, as Terent and I were still suffering from the effects of the poison. We’re holed up in the Tavern of the West Wind (mage run), but it is dreadful. A tree is a much better place to be. There are people all around, and wolf and I aren’t very comfortable. I’m going to see if I can go spend some time on the roof, and perhaps drift down from there. I need some air in my wings, not smoke from the common room hearth. The food is very cooked, breads, and stews and whatnot. I’d prefer to be in the bush. But I need to help Terent heal up, and he needs to help me, so I’ll suffer through this. We’ve paid for our lodgings for everyone for the next few days.
But we haven’t even found the rats Lord Lankin spoke of, nor the magical tome, nor any sense of a magical aura. It looks like we might find them on our next attempt, but the dead rat we saw was nothing like rats I’ve seen, it was almost three feet long.

Pyfiravin

Our DM ran us through a great game, lots of traps, which we triggered regularly, and a great mix of horrible undead creatures. We had a good time and missed Josh and Marlow. We’re hoping we can play next weekend, so speak up and let us know availability.
Levelling was very exciting. Imagine level 2. By fluke (die rolls) I have the most hit points in the party, although a low AC still. And now that Al’lien has some healing ability, I may be able to afford to take an interesting spell or two occasionally.
Thanks so much to our DM.

Nespin wrote:
> For the benefit of those who weren’t there – the three of us who were there have hit Level 2. Pyf has another foot-bow commissioned (though it will not be ready for quite a while). I took a level of Crusader, so our healing problem isn’t quite as bad. We cleared out a decent chunk of a dungeon (y’all missed some fairly good treasure!).

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[Day 4-6] Account of Humans arguing

DM
Five players -
monk Terent
warblade Al’lien
fighter Josh
kineticist Marlow
druid Pyfiravin
Absent – spell thief Jack

So we all arrived on time!! That was cool! DM had a little difficulty dealing with that. But we were all good, Marlow’s player had to go home to get his electronic character sheet, and Josh’s player with Terent’s player’s help needed to finish up her character sheet. So we didn’t start on time or anything.

The players remembered that they were in the forest in a discussion about how to stop Alex Ward (human) and the Kenku village from (hired to) attacking travellers, (hired to) selling weapons and armour to nearby natives (lizardfolk, etc), making profit from coinage found on travellers, making profit from selling weapons.

Pyfiravin here,

So the party had a discussion about attempting to stop travellers, about intercepting Kenku as they attack travellers, about intercepting weapons’ sales… Non-violent solutions to the problem. And more discussion about who is hiring them to a) attack the travellers, b) sell weapons to arm native groups.
More violent solutions: If we attacked 50 Kenku living on the platforms, we would die. We had a hard time in a fight with three of them. We did discuss withering their trees or in some other way affecting the coffee plantation and their habitat so they couldn’t focus on economic gain.

Frankly, I revel in discussion and debate, raptorans really enjoy that.
Then there were long discussions – about the disposition of the weapons cache – a quarter ton of weapons – taken from Kenku cart. [That took a while, DM sat back and smiled. While the arguments were circular, overall the party dynamic and understanding of roles was developing. It was important in a new group who hadn’t all played together.] To deal with them locally? To take them back to Kronten with a sit rep (sorry situation report)? Pros and cons…
As a raptoran, I felt it was rather a short discussion. We usually have someone to represent the absent parties perspectives, and our discussions/debates can go on for some days. So although I find this band of humans I have joined through the Walk of the Four Winds strange and hard to understand, it was nice to see that they engage in similar activity, although rudimentary. We usually convene to our debate chamber for these matters, but this discussion just happened everywhere.

We quickly agreed we needed to pay the blood money. I collected the three black pearls we had stolen from the Kenku, and paid the blood money back to them, using those three black pearls. This was accepted by the Kenku.

Eventually on Josh’s suggestion, we took the weapons cache on the cart south toward Restenford. It was grand having all those strong folk able to pull the cart, since we have no horse, Al’lien, Josh, and Terent all took turns.

The wolf and I foraged for food for the party. While we were in a stand of woods, the wolf was surrounded and attacked by a wolf/dog pack. I managed to pull the wolf into my tree (still hunting by climbing and gliding) and we ended up being treed for an hour or so. When I attacked the lead wolf with my foot bow, it loped away, and shortly after, a 5’ tall, dog-headed humanoid creature, covered in red hair told us to go. Wolf and I were happy to do so, and left the woods immediately. The rest of the party had realized our absence and was coming to the rescue as we were heading away.

The following day, we were getting close to Restenford when we were ambushed by a half orc and some goblins on the road. The half orc suggested he had been looking for us for five days, and wanted us to immediately stop in our task of stopping the attacks along this road.
We dealt with this much better than our namesake Hobgoblin attack. Terent, and Al’lien got on the cart and used it as a defensive position and cover. Marlow joined them. Josh headed off into the bush beside the road to take on a goblin, as did wolf. They each killed a goblin, with Marlow’s help. I was in the air at the time and managed to only tip the half-orc before it reached the cart and was dealt with by those there. The goblins were all killed, Josh made his first kill, Terent again managed not to kill anyone. The half-orc was captured unconscious. We brought him back round, and questioned him, but he refused to cooperate.

The half-orc had a scroll describing us, but including the hawk animal companion that we lost shortly after leaving Kronten. Someone is looking for the party whose information is based on when we left Kronten. It appears not to be a safe place to go.

[Josh’s player has to leave about here]
The half-orc escaped. And first wolf, and then the rest of us, raced after him. We caught him again, and again he was knocked out. (Lots of fun grapples, and sub-dual damage.)

Al’lien and Pyfiravin go to Restenford, and learn that anyone arrested would be executed for assault. So bringing him there to be tried would not be an acceptable solution to members of our party. The rest of the party guards the half-orc. The party negotiates with a farmer on the way to Restenford to dig a ditch for him. The cache of weapons is buried in the ditch on the farmer’s land.

Pyfiravin cures the half-orc, which is not doing well. Marlow, in secret, tries to kill it. We appear to be working at cross purposes toward the same goal – not have a prisoner tagging along with us for an extended period.

The half orc is tied with silk rope this time, but not as well as last time. He escapes again, on Pyfiravin’s watch. She loosens the half orc’s bonds, and cures him before he goes. Officially, she doesn’t really notice, and passes the watch to Terent, who then wakens Marlow. Marlow, furious at the escape, wakens everyone to track the half orc. Tracking takes some time to succeed. We eventually find an orc cave entrance a mile or so north of Bald Hill, and are attacked by orcish archers. Since we are fatigued, and in no state to fight (especially me with just about no rest at all – Marlow and I will have to have this out), we withdraw to rest, closer to the road (near initial half orc ambush site). We sleep 12 hours or so to the next day, enough to banish the fatigue.

Pyfiravin

That is where the game ended.

[There was a discussion post game about experience points being granted for role-playing. The DM broached an idea of players nominating other players who role played well: My nomination overwhelmingly is for Marlow’s player. So if this is instituted, I really feel he should be getting extra experience points for this evening.]

[Terent’s player thinks that if long discussions become common, a party leader will have to be instituted. Al’lien’s player thinks so too? The discussions, while very good for role playing and character development, are bad for most other aspects of the game, especially plot advancement and party cohesion.
Terent’s player also thinks that the dog-headed creature is a hound archon, a celestial. He has yet to research it, however. (Pyf and Terent’s players believe that researching monsters during game or before the plot regarding them is resolved is tantamount to cheating).
Terent’s playe also thinks that voting experience to each other, while a good idea, could be divisive. He also feels that his character has more stringent alignment restrictions than everybody else, and so would/should receive the vote the most or least times, depending on what you qualify as good role playing. Is withholding yea/nay vote on the issue until further discussion and thought.]

DM’s party progress statistics

After sessions 3
Hours played: 13
In game days completed: 11
Total exp earned: 2400/7200
Net treassure aquired: 1150/6000
Planned encounters overcome: 4 1/3 /17

Nominal expected progress:
After sessions 3
Hours played: 15-18
In game days completed: 5
Total exp earned: 3600/7200
Net treassure aquired: 3000/6000
Planned encounters overcome: 9 /17

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[Day 3-4 ]Meeting Alex

Evening all, back from the mess dinner (as usual, formal dress, and then freeze cause it isn’t warm enough in February for skimpy dresses, great to see some people, and the occasional loser (OK, offensive assholes, who I would prefer not to have to deal with), and I’m the designated driver, but that is fine since I don’t drink).

Overall preferred playing D and D. Here’s my take, feel free to correct, add…

Well today was a short game (maybe an hour). Two players developed their character sheets. First one is almost there, working on a human fighter with aspirations (she had to go before we played). Second is a human spell-thief, named Jack. Neither has yet figured out how they know the rest of us. (Same deal, we have to work out how they know 2 of the others) And its looking like I’m saddled with a party of humans, strange folk humans, they have a different way of thinking, worth watching though.

So Jack and Terent and I and wolf, of course, having respectfully laid out the Kenku dead, followed the traces of the runaway horse until we found her (DM is ruling that all party members are with the party, just nothing is happening to you). I relieved the mare of her traces and she indicated she wanted to go home. So we ended up on the other trail, with the cart tracks we hadn’t yet followed. It took us to the road between Kronten and Restenford, which we crossed and continued through a forest that was being cultivated. Shade grown coffee at the base of tall deciduous trees. The horse led us to a hut that was built around the base of a tree. Scratches were on several trees, much as we raptorans cause when we climb a tree. So we returned the horse to the owner of the hut, one Alex Ward. Terent and Jack discussed how we came across the horse. I tried climbing a tree, but Alex Ward suggested it was not a wise idea as the platforms I saw up there were Svet’s people’s village. I asked if I could get permission to climb up, and so Alex Ward called Svet down. Svet is the leader of the village of 50 or so Kenku, who live up in the trees, hence the platforms, and climb up and down the trees to get up there. I was not allowed to climb up, so I mostly stood back and absorbed as Jack and Terent did the talking.

Terent then explained that he needed to speak to Svet alone, but Svet doesn’t speak Common, so Alex Ward came along to interpret. We went to the very edge of the village, and explained that although that wasn’t the intention, our altercation with the Kenku who had the cart had resulted in our killing them. We wanted to do what was necessary to pay our respects and to know how they wanted to deal with the situation. Alex Ward and Svet conferred and let us know that Whergeld was the mechanism that they use. (Rather than ongoing feuds, and retribution, they ask blood money, in this case 300 gp in compensation). We said we would be back with the blood money, and they said as long as we were in the forest, they would watch us.

Terent asked Alex Ward one last question before we left. What did he know about the robberies happening in the forest over the last while? After discussion with Svet, with a smile, his answer was that he was responsible for the robberies. He is paid to do it, and was proud to explain that he is paid four times over:
1 – he is paid to launch the attacks, and capture weapons and armour;
2 – he is paid by taking the coinage of the travellers he steals the weapons and armour from;
3 – he is paid to arm the locals (lizardmen, kenku, goblins);
4 – he is paid by the locals (trade).

So we were allowed to leave the village. We gathered together to discuss our alternatives. I felt that since they don’t hurt anyone, we shouldn’t do anything that would kill them.
So we engaged in a discussion where we engage in an attack of economic impact. We need to remove any incentive for Alex Ward to continue to want to do this – suggestions were to:
1 stop supply of arms ie somehow remove the people who are being attacked, or
2 stop him from getting paid by the locals (stop the trade), or
3 we stop Alex Ward from getting paid – ie figure out who is paying Alex Ward and stop him getting paid (suggestion was it could be the mercenaries; and it could be someone different paying for the attacks than who is paying to arm the locals)

Discussion pretty much ended there as I needed to get to said mess dinner.

Pyfiravin, druid

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[Day 1-3] The Hobgoblin Group

So finally four of us showed up, finished making up our character
sheets, and got started.
DM pulled a fast one and said we each had to know two of the other
characters, so much for not being comfortable around all those human
types…

So I met Marlow, this human guy, four years ago, we spent a couple of
months in the bush. Nice enough guy, but couldn’t find his way around
an oak tree. Someone had to keep an eye on him as he crossed our
territory, and he wasn’t going to make it without help so we travelled
together for a bit.

I’m on the Walk of the Four Winds now, for all of you non-raptorans that
means I need to build up enough strength in my wings to be able to fly,
I only glide now. When I can fly far enough, as in up into our home in
the cliffs, I am welcomed back to the flock as an adult. I’ve been on
the Walk for a few months now.

I left my home island of Tiranée (sp?) and took a ship to Lendore.
While I was waiting for the ship I met these two types, a monk named
Terent and his companion Al’lien, a warblade. They were these monastery
types, who are journeying, but good for debating, which we had plenty of
time to do on the ship. Terent has some strange ideas but he and
Al’lien are almost as lean as raptorans, though not quite as tall, so
they were alright.

So when we get to Lendore, Terent takes us to meet this childhood friend
in Kronten, who he hasn’t seen since he left for the monastery. Turns
out it’s Marlow, now a psion. We end up taking a commission to stop
bandits who are lifting travellers of their armour, weapons, and money,
but nothing else. They’ve been at it for a couple of months. Al’lien
did most of the bargaining fortunately. I’m not much for taking the
lead. Marlow wasn’t too sure but we worked it out. There were three
types hiring us, Noff, the town constable, Brendan Wade an influential
burgher type, and this weird mercenary of the Steel Vipers named Luka,
who Al’lien told us after didn’t smell right, not a people smell

So we left headed off south towards Restenford, since that was the road
where these night-time attacks were taking place. So there was this
type on the way, a hobgoblin with a wolf. The hobgoblins were native
here before all these new peoples came and took away their place. So he
wasn’t happy we were there. He said something about his boss not wanting
us there. And he just shot at us with his bow, then pulled out his
falchion, and took us down. All of us, first my hawk, then me when I
attacked him, then Al’lien, then Terent, and finally Marlow who ran away
and still got taken out. Fortunately some kindly farmers looked after
us for a few days, til we got back on our feet. I can’t believe it.
One guy took us all down. We’re like as nervous as a bull in teashop
now. When we see that guy again with his wolf, I’m sure we’ll all just
turn tail and run. He was impossibly difficult. You should have seen
Al’lien, his fighting is like a mystical dance, there is such grace and
power in it, it was almost hard to concentrate watching him. And Terent
is a blur.

I met a wolf who has agreed to be my companion. It is strange having a
four legger, a walker instead of a flyer, but we get along well. We
ended up following the tracks of a cart, for sometime off the road and
through the forest and out. It turned out it was a merchant travelling
to a lizardman’s village to trade. Ah well, so we headed back. Then we
came across a second set of cart tracks which we followed. We had the
most exciting time.

We found the cart with these interesting folk, small, like small, maybe
four feet tall, black feathered but they don’t fly, or even glide. We
chatted with them, and Marlow has this interesting psionic crystal which
sneaked onto their cart and found that the bags on the cart had weapons
and armour of various types in them. Seemed cause to look into it
more. So Al’lien and I went to talk to them. I made friends with the
horse, which they had harnessed to the cart, and started leading it
away, while Al’lien tried to get them to sell him some of their goods.
They weren’t too keen on that, so we got into a fight. Marlow made this
great move and set the cart on fire. The wolf jumped into the cart with
Al’lien and they attacked these critters. Terent got knocked out and I
went to help him out. So, then, after I had left the horse, it spooked
from the fire, and took off. Then it got exciting. Al’lien and the
wolf got knocked out of the cart. Al’lien and I tried to get back in to
stop the cart and put out the fire. We both forgot to stay low, and
fell out again, so we had to start all over. Practically a comedy, so
we jumped back in. I put the fire out by summoning a water elemental,
and Al’lien cuts the traces so the cart would stop. And the horse is
truly gone, too bad since we were becoming friends.

So here we are in a smoky wet cart, with some loot, and no one left to
ask where these black feathered folk came from. No doubt if we could
take them out, they weren’t the ones doing the attacks, but they are
connected somehow, since they have this gear.
Pyfiravin, druid

DM comments:

Whoo! Now I don’t have to write my own AAR. Well mostly I just no longer have to summarize the campaign session. I still have to write my own notes.

Overall the session went, hmm… well, for the most part. Not as much was accomplished as I’d though, I’d planned on the party making it through the first three combat encounters rather than the first two, and for them to make more progress in five day of game time. I think my initial requirement of prior character association worked as well as I’d hoped with the debates between characters being kept relatively cool and intellectual. A relatively in medias res opening also helped bind the characters quite closely from the beginning despite using five different books for four characters (PHB, ToB, XPH, RotW, BoeD). I’d say that this experiment in campaign design was a success. It also interesting to point out that the major split in party opinion has been over the law/chaos divide rather than the good/evil. I’ve already rewritten, added or removed several future encounters in order to keep party growth moving appropriately towards my level two with appropriate equipment at end of adventure goal. You know it’s really hard to find a CR 1, primarily ranged fighting enemy that isn’t humanoid.

Most epic campaign moment: No action by the party is yet worthy for this title. For now it is held by a nameless hobgoblin fighter 1 who held a road against four enemies.

Least epic campaign moment: Two party members fall out of a cart when the horse pulling it bolts, one manages to jump back on only to fall out again (Balance DC to stay upright 10, balance DC not to fall out 6)

Amusing note: that hobgoblin defeated a EL 4 encounter earning 1200 experience which was enough to level it up to fighter 2. That thing just got a little more dangerous. Quickdraw was its level 2 fight feat if anyone wants to know.

Duscussion of next game date: I’ve had Monday February 16th suggested to me as the date of the next game how are you guys for then.

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