-01/16/10 - Taur Rast
Since arriving in this port city, a combination of man's conquests and the remnants of elven civilization, you have managed to secure a room at the Inn of Shelyn's Grace, witness the townsfolk response to a recent rash of vandalism and cryptic graffiti, and become recruits in a town wide attempt to find those guilty for the disturbances.
Achievements thus far - Trudy has managed to earn some coin plying her bard skills and gambling, Matt has discovered some of the history of the once proud elven shipwrights who had constructed the port and left their glorious mark, Jesse has struck up a working relationship with the local smith and his apprentice and became acquainted with Trudy's bard.
-01/17/10 - Taur Rast, continued
After receiving the charge from Harbormaster/Mayor Heinrich, the party split itself amongst volunteers and the regular city watch for night patrol against the vandals. The elven cleric of the group traced back the graffiti to an area of its highest concentration, and amongst the inane blather found evidence of foot and hand prints. After some prodding he discovered a goblin traveling through a refuse pile that obscured a secret stone door in the town wall. At this point the group bard and sorceress were silently exploring the top tier of the town, and the bard happened upon the roof of the smithy next to the fight between the cleric and a goblin that emerged from the refuse. She literally dropped in after the fight as the sorceress took the safe way round and the party, assisted by volunteer watch and town guards, unearthed, through the refuse, what further inspection revealed to be the previously mentioned door.
The town guard carried away the dying goblin's body for interrogation and the party was left wondering and expecting answers from the mayor the following day. Receiving nothing more than a cold shoulder, and discovering that there was a mysterious murder of a town guard by the very door they discovered in the late night, the party rushed back to the site to discover the opening mechanism and descended down a dark, fine quality, stone stair way. Here they encountered a pair of goblin dogs which they slew, and after long inspection, they discovered the remnants of an ancient elven tomb.
While probing the first room of the tomb, the cleric discovered an irregularity in the statuary, the bard investigated old sarcophagi, and the sorceress discovered an old, locked door. The bard, seeking rope after the cleric narrowly avoided a trap door leading to a mysterious burial pit, was apprehended by the town guard after leaving the tomb, the cleric discovered a mysterious door behind a trigger statue, and the sorceress tried to avoid capture by attempting to kill a guard that descended the stairs to investigate and apprehend trespassers. She was beaten nearly to death and taken for healing and questioning at the harbor master's tower, which is where the bard was just explaining the mysteries found below to the ever curious, yet quiet mayor.
The sorceress was revived by the elven priest Jacen and held for questioning, the cleric locked himself in an ancient elven tomb to avoid capture and ended up discovering the hidden tomb of Earendil the Mariner, his map of the ancient world, his jewels, and a mysterious torque. The bard managed to convince the mayor of her innocent curiosity and escorted back a pair of guards to explain her findings in the mysterious tomb.
Total XP received 475 per PC. Great game, guys! Let me know if you have any suggestions, ideas, or criticism.
-01-23-2010 - Taur Rast, continued
With the Sorceress recovering under the supervision of the town's elven cleric Jacen, the Bard reporting back with the town guard, her findings in the catacombs beneath the town, and the cleric sneaking out of the tomb undetected, back to his room at the inn, the night began. After standing before the mayor to report their position and receive their judgment, the Bard and Sorceress were allowed to go back to the inn for the evening, charged with a request to report back in the morning. They learned of the interest of the elven cleric in the findings of the elven tombs beneath the city, that he wished to report this to the local elven enclave's emissary, and that they were to be requested to further exploration into the depths of the tomb.
That night the Cleric had a chance to finally meet Clifford, the owner of the Inn of Shelyn's Grace, as the Sorceress entertained herself at the tavern, The Oaken Whale, and the Bard encountered Clifford, who has a deep hatred towards bards due to past encounters. The Cleric made his way to the Traveler's Temple and had a chance to become acquainted with the holy side of life in Taur Rast, and review tomes and scrolls in the temple's library. The Bard, after smoothing over her presence with Clifford, also visited the temple, paying respects to her god, the god of luck, and conversing briefly with a cleric of that god's order. The Sorceress spent her time attracting drunken sailors eager for a groping and sharing of ales. She did, however, fall unconscious after drinking what was freely offered to her by the local dock hands. The Bard and the Cleric eventually made their way down to The Oaken Whale for a chance to encounter a different part of town, and, for the Bard, a chance to earn some coin plying talents. They were informed of the challenge Humbold, the pub owner, placed forth to win an item called the “Sailor's Purse.” The Bard was discouraged by an off night and retired to the inn, the Cleric made his way about, avoided a fight, and had to carry the drunken, unconscious Sorceress back to her room at the inn.
The next day the party left on their way to make good with the mayor by attending a meeting he arranged to schedule a group, especially those interested, or, for what he knew in the case of the Bard and Sorceress, folk who had been in the catacombs to explore those same catacombs. They arrived during a period where a recently arrived caravan from the mountains was unloading to have their cargo put aboard ships. The Bard managed to talk to the dwarven guards, who accompanied the caravan from their home in Stradtdam, about the happenings of the area. They disclosed that there was a threat of an old enemy in the woods and that the roads, especially trade on the river, were very unsafe as of now. The party eventually managed to make their way inside the tower to hold a secret meeting with Heinrich the mayor who proposed that they, accompanied by two of the town guard, explore the catacombs, find the length and depth of them, and determine any immediate threat to the town and destroy it. He offered generous reward for their part.
The party left Heinrich then, accompanied by Falk and Emil, two of Taur Rast's guards, to the opening of the catacombs and down into the darkness below. After some exploration of the familiar first room, the party made its way down a narrow corridor that opened onto a slightly wider hall that was inhabited by two stray goblins that put up a fight, wounding the torch-bearing town guard Falk, but were bested by the party's skill. The Cleric fought skillfully on the front line of combat as the Sorceress sent her magic missiles to their mark, and the Bard successfully inspired courage in her comrades by playing her instrument skillfully, driving the party towards victory. After searching the bodies, the Cleric discovered an amulet bearing a symbol of an black, upside down tear drop with two curly horns coming off of its widest end. They then pressed forth, after Falk broke down the door at the hall's end, into another tomb, this one in great disrepair, especially where the ocean managed to wear away the floor and cause the tomb to slope down into the briny depths. While exploring this space, and the sarcophagus within, the guard Falk was grappled by an octopus that was frightened into action, but with the party's quick response, was frightened into fleeing back into the depths, saving Falk from a horrific death. The party, having realized they just discovered the tomb of Glorfindel “The Second, Rudder of his people,” seeing that they could go no farther since the tomb ended in eroded ruin, back tracked to the first room where they realized that their recent combat had stirred up a goblin offensive that was emerging from a formerly locked door. There ended this night's events.
-02-06-2010 - Tomb of Earendil the Mariner -
Tonight the party continued on the cliffhanger where they left off last week. Rounding a corner they came face to face with a party of goblins and their goblin dog. Battle was had and an NPC death occurred, much to the despair and grief of the other, town guard, NPC. They pushed onward after slaying their goblin foes to enter a new portion of the tomb, The Tomb of Sorrows, where, amongst 3 sarcophagi, set the makeshift goblin quarters and a big old hobgoblin, ready for action. The party valiantly fought this menace and his two goblin companions, slaying them, and finding a parchment bearing the symbol of the Sect of the Dark Blooded (which the Sorceress remembered hearing, was an ancient, long extinct order of evil mages in the northern lands).
After searching and finding that the sarcophagi were, in fact, the tombs of the "Daughters," and finding a miniature statue of, as far as the Cleric knew, Earendil, they pressed on to a passage in the eastern wall. Straight down they encountered a large statue unlike the others of the tomb thus far, and a passage leading off to the south that was the remnants of a cave-in and thick, dead vegetation, mostly thorns and bramble covering up a gap. The Sorceress worked at removing this obstacle with her spear as the Cleric inspected the statue to discover a pendant that, once moved, revealed a key slot. Based on script engraved on the tombs in the previous rooms on the daughter's sarcophagi, the Bard suspected that the keys lay within those hallowed, stone caskets. After retrieving a key from one of the caskets they were able to open a lock that caused the statue to descend. Another lock was behind that, hidden in the symbol of a star. They found yet another key in another casket and were able to open this lock. After gaining entry to the room beyond, they found a large, high ceiling chamber, with a hole worn in the ceiling, that held a monument to the mariner and was magically guarded by skeletal, elven sentinels, that the Cleric defeated with sound tactics. During this event, through accident and shock from fear, the Cleric finally revealed his class to the curious Bard. The party, after exploring the room, back tracked and hacked their way out through the bramble and debris into a forest clearing at the base of a steep hillside. Here they encountered an elven archer hiding in the wood who had made his way to this clearing after tracking a party of goblins through the woods. After a discussion and his notice that the Cleric was an elf as well, he followed them inside and briefly surveyed the tomb he previously had no idea of. He offered them a chance to accompany him back to his camp to discuss their time in the legendary tomb. Falk, the town guard, NPC, was upset at the dealing with the elf and set off back to the town through the tomb. The party decided to follow the elf in this case, possibly losing their chance to enter Taur Rast again or to reap their reward from the mayor/harbor master.
-02-20-10 - The Drümelhelm -
Tonight the party started off on their journey into the wild woods of the Drümel, led by a mysterious elf named Kamroth. After getting acquainted and picking up on a little bit of elven opinion on this new land, especially concerning the distrust between humans and elves, they journeyed on into the night and set camp. The next day they happened upon a burned out campsite, old by a few days, and then came to the trade road that leads from Taur Rast, inland to the other settlements of the massive wood. Kamroth, wary of the peoples they might encounter on this road, advised their quickness and stealth when crossing. After the bard and sorceress crossed, just before the cleric attempted to cross from the safety of the thick wood to the other side, an owlbear tore its way out of the thick branches just a bit down the road. It managed to spot the party watching it and engaged them in a combat that led to its near death.
After an intense and frightening battle, in which the bard convinced the beast that the party was poisonous and shouldn't be consumed, the cleric deemed the beast worthy of saving and stabilized it. They then dove back into the woods, hurried off the road by Kamroth, and after hours more traveling through the thick forest, they came upon a magnificent structure of ancient elvendom. Before them, in a slight raised clearing was a massive humanoid statue, worn from years, cracked and overgrown. Just as Kamroth was prepared to explain the significance of the monument, he and most of the party detected smoke and sinister cackling from beyond. After quiet surveillance, Kamroth discovered an orc and goblin encampment, the very group he had been tracking. Using their skill and wits the party managed to sneak up on the fiends and battled ensued. Combat ended with the party victorious and, after heated, hate-filled interrogation between Kamroth and a prone, sole-surviving goblin it was learned that this was a party delivering supplies to the goblins inside the Tomb of Earendil, prepared for infiltration and invasion. He quickly dispatched the beast. The sorceress found, while searching the bodies, orders, written in fine common, to prepare for "the Coming" and for the retaking of the wood for the goblin and fell folk. With that the party settled in to camp for the night as the sun quickly fell.