God Maker, God Breaker

Session 13

Left alone in Mordecai’s mansion, Roxy and Steve do what any pirate and thief would do. They decide to steal the orb back. Maybe some other things, too, but Roxy won’t shut up until she has the orb. Unfortunately for them, the room was trapped. (What? Really? Mordecai doesn’t leave important things unprotected?) A couple of (very) poison darts and a few moving statues quickly changed their minds. So, the heroes turned their attentions to more productive ventures. Namely, hiding in the mansion and drinking Mordecai’s booze.) Until they noticed Alexi and the old man from scene 24. I mean, the cloaked man from session 4 (who has no eyes). And they were walking unmolested through the streets. Our heroes braved the battle ground of the compound, dodging fights and stray arrows and got the pair’s attention. They discovered that the two were somehow unnoticed by the beings destroying the rest of the city (and presumable everywhere else.) They seemed to know something about what was going on and more than that, would prove excellent allies in the plan to start the Terronist religion. However, the heroes were beginning to be noticed by the angels and the conversation had to be cut short. Alexi and the man said they would be in Trilake for a while and that they may be willing to help. The night passed and the heroes rested as best they could. By morning, the battle still raged on, and it seemed that demons and devils had joined the fray. Even parts of the compound showed signs of damage. The heroes realized that they could only hide for so long, and decided to head out to gather some followers. After all, what better time to preach a new religion than a time of widespread panic and destruction? On their way to the nearest temple, they found their old (well, month longish) friend Otto Sir Otto, merrily slaying the foul creatures that would threaten a city full of such soft and beautiful women. Never one to forsake friends, Otto rejoins the group. After only a few blocks, they come across a half dozen angels of Valor bearing symbols of Kord, Pelor, and Bahamut. Meanwhile, William Tacket, braving the streets in hopes of finding some sign of either Steve Quint or Otto Sir Otto, came upon the same group of angels. The battle started rough, but Vlad caught up and helped even the odds. It was still a close fight, but the heroes prevailed and took shelter in a nearby temple of Erathis. Steve began preaching about the only god not participating in the slaughter, Terron! The head priest of the temple was not in the mood to put up with some the derogatory things Steve was insinuating about the other gods, but was not the type to throw someone into a death zone. Steve set up a small alter in the corner of the temple which was soon burned by a fallen lantern. The priest took this as a sign that Erathis was angered and told Steve to leave. In a last ditch effort to garner some support, Steve stepped outside and got the attention of the nearest angel he could in hopes that he could lead in to slaughter a few people and prove his point. Unfortunately, the nearest angel was a servant of the Raven Queen who was more intent upon Steve anyway. And it was a big friggin’ angel. The good news was that it didn’t seem able or willing to approach the temple. So Steve stood there taunting the thing. Until the priest of Erathis prayed for an angel of Erathis to protect the temple from Steve’s brash actions. Cornered and scared, Roxy began praying to Terron for some sort of help. And her prayers (and a llucky random die roll and a couple of dick magic) were answered by a very surprised and annoyed Mordecai appearing beside the angel of the Raven Queen. Steve took the opportunity to run back home to mom, while the other stayed behind to watch. Mordecai fought and defeated both that angel and the angel of Erathis, and stormed off back to his mansion. The Heroes followed, and he briefly berated Roxy for summoning him and leaving Terron unprotected. When Will mentioned that he was working for Baron Zandakar, Mordecai consented to show him some his recent acquisitions, including the orb. Will took some notes and made some sketches. Mordecai went on to tell them the only way Terron could get enough energy to recall him was with a living sacrifice. And our heroes knew just the sacrifice. Roxy agreed to perform the ritual in exchange for the orb. Mordecai agreed, saying that the orb might be safest on her ship, hidden by the charm that Terron had given her. Chloe had already said that she would willingly sacrifice herself for her master and so she made good on that promise. Mordecai lead a ritual attended by Roxy and Magus (Otto, Will, and Vlad would have no part of it.) and as soon as Roxy stuck the knife in the girl’s heart and Magus played witness, they both became evil aligned. Her blood was absorbed into the alter and a portal opened behind Mordecai into some sort of void that was impossible to look at for long. He turned and stepped into it, reminding them to guard the orb with their lives. With the orb in hand, Roxy took everyone to the ship so that they could get out of the city. Will, unwilling to let them out of his sight for fear of losing the object (if, in fact, it was what he was seeking) went with them. Steve gathered up some things with his mother and led her to Roxy’s ship.

The day is First-Fourth: Adinor, Y1015

I’m going to retcon just a little bit and start the next session as you are preparing to set sail. There’s a couple things I want to get to get done before you leave. One of them being to official tie William into the group.

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Session 12

Who better to ask about bringing someone back from the dead than Terron? So, Roxy, Magus, and Vlad set out to Terron’s mansion. When they arrived, however, they found the entire woods burned to the ground and the mansion in very poor shape indeed. Terron’s servant girl (who they later learned was named Chloe) knew nothing of her master’s whereabouts, but allowed them to search the house. They found no sign of Terron, but they did find an angel of Pelor destroying the undead kept in the pit below ground. They tried to sneak out, but they were spotted and questioned. The angel warned them that they were treading a thin line and told them that their only hope of redemption was to serve Pelor by telling a priest the instant they knew anything about where Terron could be found. They left, taking Chloe with them and returned to Trilake. When they got back to their bar (formerly The Rat’s) they found the man with the white face paint searching through the office for a pouch. They found out that anything put in one pouch could be taken out of the other and that, somehow, the man was compelled to do anything that was written and placed in the pouch. They decided to use this to their advantage and claimed him as their “indentured servant” until he paid off the arbitrary amount that Roxy claimed he owed for the things he broke in the office.

Meanwhile… Steve was approached in the void by a being that only identified itself as True Death, a goddess without name who had been usurped in ages long forgotten by the Raven Queen. She expressed a shared hatred for the Raven Queen and offered to release Steve from the void, if only she had the power. Weakened from eons of lack of worship, she needed another life to return Steve to the realm of the living. Steve decided to see what would happen if he suggested a man who could never die. So he gave her the name Terron. She seemed pleased with the choice and Terron appeared next to Steve. He was confused, and seemed to recognize the goddess. She attempted to take his life, but was surprised to find that it was impossible. Terron, seeing a chance he’d likely never have again, returned the gesture, removing her heart and swallowing it. It worked, and the nameless goddess vanished. Terron, now a god himself, returned Steve to the material plane so that he could could spread the word and bring worshipers to Terron so that he could have the power to defeat the other gods. Steve appeared safely with his still living mother who was in a shed on the outskirts of Trilake. After making sure she was comfortable, he left to make sure that that he could find the others and see about leaving Trilake and taking his mother with them. And then the sky burst into flames and angels began descending upon the city. Steve went outside in hopes that telling them where they could find Terron might stop the attack and was immediately attacked. They defeated the angel and took refuge in the barricaded office until Rahm kicked the door in and told them that Mordecai wanted to see them. They followed, watching Rahm handle the angles like bitches and met with Mordecai who had also been visited by Terron. Terron explained that the gods were displeased by his (and Steve’s) actions and sought to teach the world to fear and respect them. He told them to eliminate worship of the greater gods and build a base of worship for Terron so that he could defeat the gods and move on to other things. He left them with a gift of power (in the form of XP) and a charm that would hide Roxy’s ship from the gods. Then he returned to an undisclosed hiding place to rest and await the energy of worship. He took Mordecai with him to protect him while he rests. Rahm took control of the business in Mordecai’s absence and is allowing the party to wait out the assault within the safety of the compound.

That brings the date to First-Third: Adinor, Y1015

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Sessions 10&11

Steve and Magus decided to see what could be done to get The Rat’s old business to work for them. His papers were pretty clear, and it seemed that The Rat was basically a black market middle man. His power came mostly from connections and the money that he has in a hidden safe somewhere. Steve invents a plan to sell peices of paper that give partial ownership to the purchaser, and eventually, it would result in a lot of money. Or something. They met Sgt. Rockwell of the city guard who was appearantly on The Rat’s payroll, and they talked him out of arresting them with the promise of more money. With the plan of visiting Velda in the morning to help with the business idea, they went to sleep off their wounds.

The next day, they grab Roxy from her usual inn, and convice her to buy into the scheme. Sort of. Then they met up with Velda. Velda was not particularly receptive to the idea, partly because it sounded illegal on several levels, and mostly because Steve Quint was involved and her response to a veiled threat from Steve was less than fearful. However, when Steve told her that he needed someone to run the business to help maintain the illusion that The Rat was still alive to help protect his mom while they searched for her, she agreed. Also, Roxy got an offer to work for the brothel, which she is considering. So, the plan after that was to have Magus talk to Mordecai while Roxy asked around the docks for any information. Dock workers see many things. And indeed she learned about a man who worked for The Rat. His face is painted entirely white, and he often looked into a pouch on his belt and started mumbling. Other than that, he is realatively normal. Magus, however, just went drinking. Steve searched through The Rat’s things some more and found an odd note that simply said “She lives.” He took it as a sign and ran to meet up wit hthe others. When he learned that no one had talk to Mordecai yet, he got thme to go with him and ask for help. Mordecai, for all his dickitude, offered to help as he could for the sake of Steve’s mom, and was able to scry her out, proving that she was alive, but not helping to find her. He also explained a little about what was most likely happenning to Steve’s fate. He mentioned that there was a slim chance that he could open a portal to her, but it would be dangerous even if he knew where she was, and basically suicidal as is. But Steve was not about to pass up a chance to find his mother, and told him to do it. So, a few moments later, Mordecai had a portal that showed an image of Steve’s mom in her cell, flickering with images of who-knows-what-else. He told Steve that there was maybe a %15 chance that it would work and the he would survive. So Steve went for it and was torn apert in horrible ways. While floating in limbo, he realized he had a choice. Three powerful forces had claim to his soul, and it seemed he got to choose his afterlife. He chose to confront the Raven Queen and went toward her. He immediately began to berate her for the curse she laid on him and how it ruined her life. She countered, unfazed, by pointing out all the choices he had made and how he was merely blaming her for how his knowledge changed his actions. She told him that he was not the only person to have ever known the date of his death and even implied that there were several alive today with such knowledge. She left him with the message “You have another choice to make.” and left him floating in limbo. Roxy and Magus joind Mordecai for some drinks, and eventually left to go figure out their plans.

The date of the next session will be Fourth-First: Avandor, Y1015 and may or may not include Steve. Hm…

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The Rat's stash

While you are sorting through The Rat’s office, you find the following: (I assume that Magus will use his mage sight, so anything with a ! is somehow magical.)

-A door key that doesn’t fit any door in this tavern (you checked).

-!A blood-red stylus with what appear to be Infernal runes on it.

-A stack of contracts, ledgers, notes, etc.

-!A set of four beautifully carved obsidian horse figurines.

-!A platinum-embossed leather pouch on the desk.

-A display case.

The display case takes up half of a wall and contains a plaque that says “Failed to Kill Me.” It seems you were not the first to try. Kudos for pulling it off. Kinda. Contained within are various small weapons and empty vials that presumably once contained poison. But there are a few displays that catch your eye:

-!Leather armour that seems to be made of small patches. The strings on it look suspiciously like rat tails.

-!With this armour is a dagger with an oddly green tinted blade.

-!Leather armor inlaid with odd runes.

-!A pair of falchions etched with unfamiliar symbols.

-!A pair of thin bracers.

-!A deep red robe with gold trim made from a fabric you do not recognize.

-!A fine black cloak that is slick to the touch.

-!A set of gold thin-rimmed glasses

-!A pouch with four very cold ice cubes that do not melt.

This is what you will find by asking me “what’s in the room?” Saves me describing it. I realize that it seems awfully convient that there are things for each of you, and I would say that it’s probably destiny, but the truth is simple. There is some freaking cool stuff in the Adventurer’s Vault.

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Sessions 8&9

The day started early as Steve set out to investigate some of the men working for The Rat. While lurking in the shadows behind the tavern of one such individual, a noise above drew his attention to a figure on a catwalk above. Without hesitation, he despatched the stalker with the power of Eyebite, only to find that it was one of the street urchins. He felt bad, but that is the risk children take following strange men in the dark. In a dramatic flourish, Steve burt through an upstairs window and rolled into the bedroom of the owner and his wife. The couple were startled, but the owner caught his cool when he saw that it was Steve Quint, probably here to pay off his debt. When Steve demanded to know the man’s involvement with The Rat, he moved the conversation downstairs. He was amenable, if hesitant, to help bring down the black market mogul and told Steve about the deals that take place in the bar. Steve planned to return and follow one of the men doing an exchange to get some information.

However…

When Steve returned to the tavern, he heard the old familiar call of a large mercenary emerging victorious. Otto Sir Otto, having recieved Roxy’s letter in the cleavage of a young lass, had come to rescue Steve’s mother. There was some discussion one the others awoke and it was finally decided that the best course of action was to simply barge into The Rat’s office and force him to release his hostage. Things went well, though the bartender proved somewhat more dangerous than than aticipated. Once inside the office, Steve made his demands. The Rat responded by opening a trap door and fleeing down a tunnel after a remark about “his masters”. Steve dove head-first a good twenty feet, managing to roll well enough to not die. The Rat was gone. Pretty quick for a fat man, huh? Then, things got rough… The tunnel turned out to part of the old sewer project and was infested with… oh yeah, that’s right… mother fucking snakes. Big ones. These wouldn’t have been too much trouble but for Steve’s impulsiveness. He knew that he couldn’t let The Rat get away, and took off down the tunnel only to be confronted with the raised skeletons of what had probably been enemies of The Rat in life. Smart enough not to temp fate too much, Steve returned to his allies bringing the surprisingly fast skeletons with him. The fight started going down-hill as Otto found himself surrounded and the others were driven back into the side tunnel. Eventually they defeated the enemies and without a moment’s rest, they took off after The Rat. Unfortunately, The Rat was waiting and jumped them from behind. It seemed his masters had gifted him with some impressive power and a dangerous new form. The Rat proved cunning and deadly, and despite a sudden hamstringing from Steve, he brought down the heroes one at a time, making full use of his hampered movement. Steve was first to go down, and he spent the rest of the fight drifting in and out of conciousness. Magus’ Icy Hand helped deal some damage, though The Rat proved too agile to be held for long. Otto soon fell, and while Roxy tried to keep Steve from dying, Magus went down to the Warlock/Rouge Wererat. The Rat made Roxy several offers to end the fight in exchange for paying for the inconvience of the fight in what was likely an unsavory way. She refused and tried to revive her fallen comrades while The Rat fired Eldritch Blasts and Hellish Rebukes and dropped them quick as she could get them to their feet. All the while, The Rat was regenerating his wounds. When Roxy finally turned to face him, she was no match and fell to his bite and blade. Cinematic cut-scene: Steve’s vision blurred as he struggled to regain his feet. The sounds of the fight had died and the only thing he could hear was the sound of The Rat, chuckling in his human form, brandishing a dagger. “You always were a fool, Quint,” he gloated. “All you had to do was work for me and do as I say, and you could have had her back.” He knelt down, pointing his blade at Steve’s neck and froze, a shriveled hand on his shoulder. “Get up, Steve Quint,” a voice that sounded like a whisper in his mind said. He struggled to his feet and saw the cloaked figure behind the paralyzed form of The Rat. “This is the only man left who knows where your mother is. I give you a choice: Take this man’s life now and have your vengence, or allow him to live and do as he says to save your mother.” Steve thought briefly and decided that The Rat could hold his mother over him forever, but this was likely the only time he’d ever have The Rat at his mercy. His slid his blade between the fat man’s ribs and into his heart. The robed figure laughed. “You betrayed your own mother for your vengance. An excellent choice.” And the figure was gone. Steve slit The Rat’s throat to be sure, and went about bringing the party to their feet. They dragged the body of the crime boss back to the surface where Steve stripped him and left a note stabbed into his chest stating simply “Steve Quint.” He began clearing out the bar of the bodies from the previous fight, While Roxy went back to her inn of choice, a bit squemish about the idea of moving corpses. Magus didn’t mind; despite Steve’s slightly unnatural greyish tint, they were still friends. And those guys were dicks anyway. Otto Sir Otto has bid is farewell, promising to find Steve’s mother at any cost, no matter how long it takes. Steve is now poised to take over The Rat’s operation, if only he can keep it. Roxy now finds herself with little reason to stay and the call of her ship grows ever stronger. Magus seems loyal enough to Steve, but this is hardly a path to the power he seeks. And how far can Steve go before Magus has to turn his back on him?

Is the the end of our favorite band of heroes? Will they find a new reason to join their powers? Holy crap, the suspense is killing me! I’ll post the contents of The Rat’s office later. For now, as promised, here is The Rat’s hit points during the fight: (It’s not quite real-time since I sometimes combined the regen in with damage, but it’s pretty close.)

260, 236, 228, 211, 216, 200, 184, 166, 171, 144, 134, 119, 93, 98, 162, 144, 123, 97, 109, 91, 96, 101, 106, 112, 101, 106, 91, 96, 89, 71, 76, 81, 66, 41, 46, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 39, 44, 49. You were so close. Roxy could have taken him if she had kept on him toward the end. Oh man, it was dramatic. All the thundering and booming in those sewers. What a fight.

So, that’s where we’re at. The current day is Third-Sixth; Avandor, Y1015. The next session will start the same day, as there are some things that need to be delt with before we can fast foward. So, try not to get into any fights. You guys are in bad shape right now.

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Session 7

Steve set out to begin his destruction of the man who so rudely attempted to rip him off with the armor. He man who caused him a fresher, more heinous wound would have to wait. After all, there was no way to find him, but the other man owned a shop.

After his original idea of breaking into the man’s house failed due to broken lockpick, he came up with a plan. The plan was (not remotely) simple: Roxy would seduce the man, get the key to his shop, and then they could rob him blind. This went south when the man proved a gentleman and made no sexual advances. (Also, Roxy forgot what she was doing.) But she managed a date out of him, and Steve and Magus decided to break in the old fashion way. WITH ACID!

So Steve began to loot the place when he realized that a mad wraith was approaching. He fled and watched from aross the street with Magus. The Eye of Vecna took this chance to give him a vision of being attacked by dozens of wraiths. Once this had settled, Magus pulled a bit of a dick move by Ghost Whispering some random gibberish into Steve’s ear, sending him running home to Mommy. Literally.

Meanwhile, Roxy enjoyed a pleasant dinner with a perfect gentleman who even saw her to the tavern.

When Steve reached home, he found his mother missing and a note from The Rat that he had kidnapped her. Well, this pretty much put Steve’s plans out of his mind and he focused only on his mother. (DM note: Sorry to interrupt the plans, but Steve’s mom had to be missing the next time he went for effect. The Rat doesn’t wait around.) He insisted that Roxy return what items he had stolen to the shopkeeper, then interrupted when she took to long, causing something of a dramatic shattering of a potential ally.

Well, Roxy had an idea. Who better to find a woman than ::drum roll:: OTTO SIR OTTO! Not sure where he was, she wrote a note and looked for a messenger. After all, someone must know where he is. When she turned around the note was gone, but she somehow knew that it had been delivered.

Until they could find her, they decided to draw The Rat to them. Relying on The Rat’s use of secrecy, they put together a plan to make him known in hopes that he would negotiate to keep his cover. Of course, Steve will kill him when his mother is safe, but he started it. NO ONE fucks with Steve Quint’s mother. Well, the devils did, but they’ll get theirs someday.

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Session 6

The battle set our heroes back. They found themselves faced with a tough choice. Grit their teeth and trudge the deadly forest, or return empty handed. So the bold adventurers went with the old standby known as fire. Steve lit a torch and set as many trees on fire as he could reach. This started a brief debate with Dolgun which ended with him heading off into the forest for lack of a better plot device to get rid of him. The rest of the party decided to set up camp and see how much of the woods would burn, either making their trip easier or driving the necromancer out to them.

Unfortunately, though the trees seemed to burn well, the flames died out overnight and a strange odor filled the air. The next morning, the group awoke to find the entire forest drenched in blood. Whose blood was a mystery, but Magus was sure that it was not human. He also noticed a large raven watching them from a blood soaked bough. As he approached, it cawed and dropped a note to which Magus responded by writing another note and holding it up for the raven which took it. A short wait later, it returned with another note and Magus declared it safe to travel through the woods.

The walk was long and winding and they were being watched from just out of the range of Magus’ staff. They finally reached a clearing, and rather than the tower they were expecting, they found a mansion surrounded by flesh golems tending a garden, trimming the undergrowth, and other domestic chores. The door was unlocked and led into a foyer with two doors and a very large mirror. In the center of the room were a chalice and a sharp dagger on a pedestal. Steve found the doors to be locked, and though there seemed to be an obvious answer in front of him, he was loathe to part with any more blood. Magus was not so worried and donated a small amount of blood into the chalice. After the blood was absorbed into the metal, Magus was able to open the doors. The one they chose led into a large sitting room with several doors and a stairwell. On door was under the stairs and led down into what appeared to be Terron’s laboratory. After a few rooms, they found the necromancer sitting in a throne over a pit of the undead. He humored them for a few moments before suggesting they move upstairs.

Despite their expectations, the man proved to be a decent host, providing them with food and drink served by a young woman who never spoke. He told them a little about himself and provided some insight into Magus’ condition and its possible connection to Mordecai. Around this time, Steve found that he could not remember the date of his death. As for Terron’s connection to the atheist activity, he explained that the insane priests and perhaps even the murders were the gods’ way of enticing someone to seek out Terron. He also explained that he has a method of hiding form the gods and even making it difficult for them to remember his existence. He claimed that he was a threat to the gods, who were hunting him. Somehow they got an idea of his whereabouts, and unable to follow up themselves because of his method of hiding, created this plan in hopes that mortals might find him, and upon returning, their knowledge would find its way to the gods. Just what sort of threat a secluded necromancer posed the gods that was great enough to warrant such a gambit, he did not divulge, nor were the heroes bold enough to ask. Suddenly, Terron produced a strange eye and set it on the table. It was the Eye of Vecna, and each member of the party saw their desires within it. In the end, Steve was the only one able to go through with the process of removing his eye (right there on the couch, to the disappointment of Terron) and insert the eye with the help of a mostly curious Magus. Terron made it clear that Steve could (and would likely) die suddenly and soon after leaving. Apparently, he had had the eye for a while and it was itching to get back to its master. When his motives were questioned, he said that it was a simple experiment.

The heroes rested the night and set out for Trilake in the morning. The trip back was relatively short and they were completely unmolested. Steve also found that he could no longer remember the date of his death, but now he was certain that he was not supposed to. (Note: I don’t remember if that’s what I said before, but if it’s not, consider this ret-con.)

They returned and Roxy found that her ship was fixed and ready to go and went to do some shopping in preparation for getting back out to sea. Steve had lunch with his mother and went to see The Rat. He told him what he had learned and then went on to threaten The Rat and insisting that Vecna was pleased and there was some talk of The Rat now working for Steve. The Rat was clearly angered, which was a new thing. The Rat has only ever been known to show smug superiority. Eventually, The Rat’s mood shifted back to calm and the conversation ended. Then Steve went to do some shopping.

Magus went to Mordecai with the report of their journey and then met up with Roxy for some shopping and drinking.

Steve was feeling saucy and was in the mood for something magical. His first trip led him to a small shop selling a particularly expensive piece of leather armor. Outraged at the price, and at the shopkeeper’s insinuations about Steve’s character, he promised to see his shop closed within the week. His next attempt led him to a man at the docks who had some boots that would allow someone to walk on water and another pair that would cause a person to always land of their feet. Again, the prices were high, having been influenced by recent events, and Steve proceeded to haggle. The man was reluctant, so Steve tried a different tactic. Claiming that by not allowing a person to test the product, he risked selling a faulty item, and finding himself on the wrong end of a grudge. He then offered to “take them off of his hands” for far less than asking price. The merchant was obviously not prepared for this and seemed hostile and offended. Eventually, however he caved and sold both pairs for two thousand gold. Steve went around the corner and tried out the boots that promised to always land on their feet. This left Steve with a bruised shoulder and the realization that he had been swindled. The merchant was gone however before Steve returned. Steve, now furious, swore to find and kill that man.

The date is now Third-Fourth: Adinor, Y1015

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Session 5

Upon waking, the party realized that the citizens of Khad were acting strange. They seemed distrustful and even afraid of our heroes. Dispite Dolgun’s attempts to discover the source, it remains a mystery. Deciding that there are better things to do than help a town that won’t tell them what’s wrong, they carried on after a brief debate about the merits of burning the town.

On their way to Elain, a small mining village, they managed to draw a band of demons toward an army of devils, creating a spectacular battle. They stayed in Elain for a few days, resting and enjoying the comforts of a very nice inn. Steve even pulled a quick con and won an expensive bracelet for Roxy.

Unfortunately, the adventuring lifestyle does not allow much time for such pleasures, and our brave heroes set forth for the forest to the north-east. The trip was surprisingly, perhaps even eerily, quite until they reached the forest. Though there was a narrow path, the undergrowth and low branches made travel by mount a poor choice. Not to mention that the animals were obviously spooked. Well, not the boar, but he was reluctant. So, they set out on foot. It didn’t take long for the woods to become pitch black, so they continued by the light of Magus’ staff. Almost immediately, they realized that they were surrounded.

Wights darted around, clawing at those who dared stand in front while a mad wraith’s insane whispers and icy touch tore at the minds of those in back and blazing skeletons hurled fire at anything they could see. And overseeing it all were a pair of deathlok wights. The fight was long and agonzing, lit only by the flailing staff of the wizard. Through sheer spite and grit, the heores overcame their foes and assesed the situation. They agreed that to continue in their current condition would be suicide, if what they had just encountered was indicative of what was to come. So, they decided to return the edge of the forest, regroup and figure out a plan.

It is currently Second-Second: Adinor, Y1015

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Session4

Finally, Steve’s contacts came up with something, though not in the way he had hoped. Word of his questions had reached the ears of The Rat, a “poor man’s Mordecai” who makes up for his comparative lack of resources with a vicious brutality. The Rat sent a messenger to tell tell Steve to visit him, but the message was delivered to Roxy and Magus, who had never heard of him. They found Steve, who had met up with Alexi at a small gathering of people listening to a strange preacher with unsettling ideas.

The Rat told the group that he had a mutual interest in the murders, insofar as such murders tend to make people paranoid and less susceptible to his plans. In exchange for not killing Steve yet over his debt, he demanded that he investigate some information. It turns out that someone The Rat had “questioned” mentioned the name Terron, and that he was a necromancer living in the woods somewhere to the east.

Steve decided to obtain some funds for this trip from Mordecai, who seemed more than willing to help and hended Steve a sack of coins with which to purchase supplies. When he returned to the group, Magus quickly claimed the money as repayment for the bad spell components. Magus then learned that the bag contained not gold, but fifty platinum coins.

The next morning, Roxy and Vlad turned over care of the ship to Hawkeye, while they left to find out what they could of this Terron.

Meanwhile, Dolgon the Paladin of Moradin had returned to his home after soem travel only to find that priests had been going mad, and that his tunnels had become infested with devils and demons in addition to orcs, now emboldened by the off-guard dwarven defenses. Once that was dealt with, Dolgon set out to investigate murmurrings of a necromancer named Terron. He headed to Trilake, expecting to find information there, but instead found a small group under attack by demons. Also, he rides a large boar. Did I mention that? A large boar that tends to snack on the remains of Dolgon’s kills.

Once the demons were dispatched, the group and the dwarf discovered that they shared a common goal, and that Steve was guilty of conning one of Dolgon’s uncles. Something about mining rights. While they discussed their plans, and small group of orcs attacked. It wasn’t much, but it encouraged the group to continue their discussions in the safety of a city. But before they did, they noticed that they were being watched by a large man-bat creature with a face very similar to Steve’s.

They stopped at Last Sretch for a night and the next day reached Tihl. There they met a man who intruduced himself as The Historian. He shared what little he knew of Terron with them. The infomation remined magus of something. Afterward, the group (Not the paladin, though) broke into what turned out to be The Historian’s cart and took a book containing a story about a man who tried to build his own steam jack. The Historian not only realized this, but knew exactly which book had been taken and to what story it had last been opened. He agreed to let them keep it in exchage for Steve’s story of his trip to Hell, and a promise that they would tell him their future story.

When they left the next day, they were attacked by a large group of orcs with a couple of rage drakes. It was a close fight, but they prevailed and carried on. They set up camp that night and were disturbed by an imp that attacked on Magus’ watch. It wasn’t much. Later, however, Roxy decided to drink on watch and play a prank on Steve. Unfortunately, she let the fire burn down, and a pack of wolves attacked. They killed off a couple, and a combination of a fake bear roar, a freshly sparked fire, and a thunderous roar from Dolgon’s axe scared the rest off, but not before Roxy took some damage.

The next morning, Roxy went off to bathe and Steve snuck off to watch. Which turned out to be a good thing, since skeletons rose up from the small pond and attacked. They made it back to camp and the group continued on, watched but unmolested, to the town of Khad, where Steve finially got to penetrate Roxy. Vlad didn’t even try to cock-block. Go Steve!

The Next session will begin on The Last of Avandor.

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Session 3

Steve awoke in an unfamiliar inn in the care of a young man named Alexi. Appearantly, he had been there for a few days, but Alexi knew nothing of Steve’s mother. Alexi earned them some breakfast with a dreadfully depressing song, following which they learned of the murder of a local priest of Pelor.

Never one to pass up an opportunity to make some cash, Steve decided to see if he could milk this. He presented himself as a doctor and examined the body. He was surprised by the cleanliness of the kill. The blade went between the ribs, through the heart, and stopped before exiting the other side. A clean instant kill, unlikely to have been delivered by anyone from this small town. Clearly, this was the work of a professional. Steve went straight to the mayor and promised (for a nominal fee) to find to culprit. He learned that the priest had studied in Trilake, and decided that if he had any enemies, they would be found there.

He decided to set out immediately with Alexi, who had been planning on leaving anyway. Curiously, they found no opposition, despite warnings that travel would be suicide by demon. On the trip, Alexi questioned Steve about his bargain with the devils and his trip to hell. Steve explained that he knew something the devils didn’t. And when Alexi asked what that was, Steve suddenly realized that he couldn’t remember the day he would die. He decided to take a quick nap to settle his mind and upon waking, he remembered the date, and carved the number of days he had left to live into his leg. Alexi, surprised and confused, asked what he was doing. Steve looked and saw his wound completely healed with now scar, and the date gone from his mind. He decided to get back to Trilake as soon as possible.

He found his mother safe and appearantly with no memory of her visit to hell. His next stop was to meet up with the others. Though Otto had gone to assist the guard, Roxy and Magus were found at their usual inn, drinking in the tavern. They celebrated by drinking. Alexi also favored the tavern with a song, that brought the mood down a bit, but did increase the drinking.

The next morning found a preist dead by the same method as the murder in Tihl. Steve talked Roxy and Magus into helping him find the assassin responsible. After all, the murders must have something to do with the devils, and thus may lead to clues about the location of the prison. Also, devils are dicks, and who wouldn’t want to hinder them? Other dicks, that’s who.

Unfortunately, Steve’s contacts turned up little other than the person or group responsible was likely not going to be known to anyone. So, they tried Mordecai, who was less than pleased to be bothered with them, and told them that they should not confuse their alliance with friendship. They left, and while discussing their next course of action, noticed Alexi talking to Mordecai’s guards. When asked, he explained that Mordecai had wanted to see him since they shared some hobbies and little information had made it into Trilake over the last week.

Steve spent the night staking out a nearby temple of Pelor, while Roxy and Magus returned to the tavern. Steve’s effort was in vain, however, as a priest of Bahamut turned up dead the next morning. Roxy and Magus also learned that Vlad is the Ionovan Mershan that the Tunadon guards have been looking for.

The next night found another priest of Pelor and a priest of Corellon dead.

The trio have little to go on, but Steve will be damned if he’s going to miss out on this reward. Also, there may be a little bit of legitimate concern there. Roxy, however is more concerned with Alexi, who is clearly a reverse vampire that turned into a bat and invited some other reverse vampires to attempt to have their way with her while she was passed out drunk. Clearly.

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