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Messages - Johan

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16
General Info / PF MECHANICS: A Little Help From Your Friends
« on: February 03, 2016, 08:37:35 AM »
Nice...is that a core mechanic of PF, or is that from some other source?

17
In Character Discussions / Gnarcheon's Festival at the Grove of Needles
« on: August 09, 2015, 08:08:38 PM »
Kaltya's lesson was well delivered, greatly needed, and made Shankaria more than happy. In fact, Kaltya had greatly alleviated Shankaria's burden, since the little feral gnome had been struggling with how she might deliver just such a message: change was not to be feared, but should be seen as an opportunity, and seized like a wild mount to be ridden according to your own bidding.

Shankaria lowered her face to the earth, hiding her smile lest the assembly mis-read her to be frivolous. She had always loved Kaltya, but in that moment, her affection for the Fra Shathor filled her nigh  to bursting.

She breathed deep, gathering her wits, and once again took the Grove.

"We have all been the beneficiaries of change." She said. "We have grown, learned, befriended, loved, birthed, and more."

"Granted, we have also been at times the victim of change. We have had loved ones die, we have perhaps been maimed, and we have perhaps lost our purpose at one time or another." She concentrated on not looking at Maragarn as she spoke. It was clear to her that some unwanted change had befallen her friend, and such a statement, while necessary, might just be incendiary to him.

"On this night," she continued, "we have remarkable change to consider, and on the forefront of that change is a most esteemed visitor." She turned and held her tiny arm wide in Ashe's direction, beckoning him forward.

"Ashe Clearwater." She announced. "Come. Speak to us of change."

18
Most of those gathered at the Grove of Needles tonight understood that Kaltya was different from other soldiers. She had clearly been a dryad at birth, but to the eye, in contrast to the normal elegance that is the hallmark of those sylvan tribes, Kaltya was quite ugly to look at. While not misshapen, she did have numerous bulbous cysts about her body that were reminiscent of tree burls.

Also, there was a sheen to Kaltya’s grayish flesh that made her look like she was slightly wet. As long as Bal-Jhor had known her that sheen had always been there. Though, aware of her sylvan ancestry as he was, he was confident that she was born either very pale or slightly green as any other dryad he had ever encountered or heard about.

Those who were familiar with sylvan languages and dialects understood that Kaltya was ancient, even by sylvan standards. Fra Shathor is what Kaltya’s people’s tongue called the Gnarcheon, and that title, Bal-Jhor knew, had fallen out of use long before the birth of any currently living elf. For the past few thousand years, the most of the sylvan races favored terms such as the elves did: Tra’Baellyan, or that of the sprites: Sho-Atraliar as in the case of Varshya or Mirriam.

A small part of those gathered tonight also knew Kaltya as the Lady of the Spore. Kaltya had walked the Lichen Path, and now lived in a symbiotic relationship with the Fungal world. Few understood what the meant, exactly. Shankaria likely did, but it was far beyond the ken of Bal-Jhor.

But then, there was something that Bal-Jhor knew about Kalta that few others could…possibly not even Kaltya herself, and that was that Kalya’s spirit was completely tangled with that of the fungal world. She was inextricably one with the world of mushrooms, lichen, molds, and such. By the astonished look on the half-orc’s face, Bal-Jhor understood that this newcomer saw what Bal-Jhor saw as Kaltya moved to take the audience.

“Caterpillars.” She said in her leathern voice. After a pause, she added, “Tadpoles.” Then, after another pause she added, “Kossuth’s descent”. Pause. “An erupting volcanoe.” Pause. “Venric.” Pause. “Puberty.” Pause. “The Blood Tear.” Long pause.

Bal-Jhor was confused, and the brief murmur that spread through Grove of Needles told him that he was not alone. A lesson was coming, surely, but what lesson?

At length, Kaltya continued. “The lesson of the tadpole is the same as that of the erupting volcano. It is the same as that of the caterpillar or Kossuth's descent: change is at Mahiya’s foundation.” She let that sink in. “Change is not a thing that we should fear; it is everywhere about us and it is vital to life…without it, there is nothing. Stagnance, leading to withering, leading to oblivion…to the Void of Zxyxu.”

“The question in many minds is why do we fear the volcano, but not the tadpole? Why do we fear the Blood Tear but not the caterpillar?” Bal-Jhor felt very much like a new acolyte just then.

“The answer,” Kaltya said, “is because we lack the certainty of understanding. We know that the change that the caterpillar goes through will result in a butterfly. The tadpole will be a frog. But what of the volcano? What change will that create? We know that ultimately it will create new land, but what will be destroyed in the making? We can’t know.”

“What change will come on the heels of the Blood Tear?” She asked no one and everyone. “We can’t know. No one can, and so the Blood Tear sows fear.”

She paused even longer now. Looking directly at all the gathered assembly at once. Through the power of the ritual, she scrutinized all faces simultaneously. “Let us fear only the Void.” She said. “Let us not fear the Blood Tear. The change that is heralded is yet to be wrought…let us make it as we wish it to be…as we understand Her will for the change to be.”

“The only other lesson that I have for you tonight, children, is that of the leaf.” She held high an oak leaf in her hand. As to be expected this time of the year, it was large and green. “The lesson of the leaf is this: Do your work well, and age with grace and dignity.” In her up-stretched hand the leaf began to curl slightly, then it changed colors from its brilliant green into the splotchy but beautiful reddish-yellow of Rynnyx.

As it changed to deeper red and brown, Kaltya completed her lesson, saying, “…and be ready to depart when She shall call.” She let the browned leaf fall to the floor of the Grove. It drifted into the white pine needles.

Even the wind and the peepers were silent as Kaltya ceded the audience.

One of the great lessons the fall of the leaf teaches, is this: Do your work well and then be ready to depart when God shall call.
~Tyron Edwards

19
In Character Discussions / Gnarcheon's Festival at the Grove of Needles
« on: September 28, 2014, 01:24:20 PM »
Dakhaire watched as a tiny sprite flitted up toward the front of Mahiya’s fire to address the gathered brethren. His minute, spritely  stature was distractingly accentuated by his proximity to the giant centaur who had earlier admonished Dakhaire; the sprite barely stood as tall as the centaur’s ankle.

Although Dakhaire had only seen Miriiam twice before tonight…at Dakhaire’s previous visits to this festival…it always seemed to Dakhaire that Mirriam carried his own blueish glow about with him, much like the color of Akadi’s fire. That glow played with the iridescent light strands that rained down to canvass the Grove of Needles as a result of the communal ritual that all present had cast. Even more: Mirriam’s diaphanous wings caused the falling light to refract and eddy about his little person, making him seem so much more like a small air elemental.

Dakhaire was fortunate, in a sense, that Mirriam first spoke of the eastern-most part of the Great Forest, which was where Dakhaire spent most of the year. Mirriam picked up on Varshya’s narration of Shadow Riders in the plains east of the Great Forest. They didn’t stop there, he had said.

Mirriam was an orator at heart, and he had a powerful presence that lent emotion to his listeners, whether they wanted to listen or not. Shadow Riders, he said, along with their Shade Wolf mounts had come to their forest, and had even gained a foothold in the city of Kurr, just north of Lake Vallensun. This was Dakhaire’s homeland, and the gravity in Mirriam’s voice was easily internalized: the Great Forest was as war with Xankathos, even if she didn’t know it yet.

This explained the strange things that Dakhaire himself had been hearing and seeing in his homeland: wolf conversations in the night there were NOT wolves...these voices carried through the night on a malevolent air, and made Dakhaire’s spine crawl. Dakhaire had found huge, black, hooked claws at the scenes of numerous marauder attacks on caravans, travelers, and settlements. And the occasional dead outlander that no one seemed to be able to identify.

Mirriam went on to talk about war in the middle portion of the Great Forest too: Prince Ravenwood had declared war on the wildlander tribes there. Dire news, indeed. News that angered Dakhaire almost inexplicably. With Xanthakos pushing west, it would do no good to have the west at war with herself. Dakhaire wondered fleetingly whether the Rhohannus / Wildlander war wasn’t part of Xanthakos’ machinations.

But the Rhohannus / Wildlander war wasn’t as black-and-white as it might be. It seemed that Rhohannus herself had split allegiances. Not all the barons of the city-state of Rhohannus were sympathetic to Prince Ravenwood’s efforts to subjugate the wildlanders. The Barons Ashburn (of the Barony of Mharqual), and DeMorgyn (of the Barony of Naulgrath), along with the Baroness DeMorgynand (of the Barony of Verindoc) all aligned themselves with Prince Ravenwood. Meanwhile, the Barons Spearson (of the Barony of Spearson), Jalgraxa  (of the Barony of Travantias), and  the Baroness K’Aviak (of the Barony of Durthain) all had allied themselves with the Wildlanders. The two Wildlander nations – the Wildlanders and the Bavaan Scyth – were united due to this declaration of Prince Ravenwood’s, but overall these were bleak happenings.

By the time that Mirriam had completed his speech, Dakhaire didn’t know if he should be angry or sad…or both. He also wondered whether he was the only one to suspect that this Rhohannus / Wildlander war might be promulgated out of Xanthakos.

20
General Info / Bones
« on: September 26, 2014, 10:50:46 AM »
Sooo...we get CANDY??

21
In Character Discussions / Gnarcheon's Festival at the Grove of Needles
« on: August 31, 2014, 12:16:33 AM »
As she-gnome elder spoke to Bareglar it was hard for the half-orc to not scrutinize the colorful filaments of light that in the wake of the ritual drone continuously rained down in the Grove of Needles. It was like standing amidst a shower of streamers of cloth that fell to the earth, but of light instead of cloth. Vibrantly colored light that continued to pulse in time to the rhythm that had carried the drone.

But the little gnome was speaking to Bareglar, and he did his best to attend her. He did not know her…he did not know anyone at the grove this night…but she had a remarkable presence that compelled Bareglar such that he could not pull his attention from her bright green eyes that seemed to look directly into him.

After the roll call of those who had returned to the Great Cycle, she allowed a few score of heartbeats to pass before she continued. Enough for anyone present to offer silent respects to the newly dead, should they need.

“Many of you have seen,” she started again at last, “the Blood Tear.” As she uttered these words, the raining lights swirled and coalesced, highlighting a portion of the night sky, low on the eastern horizon. Bareglar’s eyes followed the lightshow and landed – as intended, no doubt – on a comet of sorts that was so small that it might be completely missed by anyone who was not a stargazer. Although many of those collected nodded gravely and agreed that they had seen this heavenly body, at least some had not seen it. Bareglar was comforted to know that he was not alone in his ignorance.

“The Blood Tear”, the elder continued, ”in many parts of Elsenban is regarded as a symbol of doom. Of destruction. And it is feared as such. But we are aware that it is not a sign of fate, evil, death, or doom. Rather, it is a sign of change. Great change that is coming to the lands and her people. And we Children of Mahiya know that change is wrought often with pain.”

“There are tumultuous times ahead.” She said with conviction. “There will be change. There will be pain. There will be blood. Her face was serious now, as a parent that is delivering an important message. “There will be a return to the Great Cycle, possibly for many of us here in the grove this night.”

“Bear in mind that with the Blood Tear evident, the change has already begun. But by the same token, the Tear is yet low on the horizon, which tells that the change is still in its infancy. There is a long road of change ahead.”

“Let us first talk of the significant changes that have come upon us this cycle past.”

22
Character Info / The Line of Jarren Godsmith
« on: July 28, 2014, 06:28:07 PM »
In the second era of the Droung'Knaqt Empire, a time of great expansion for the empire, Jarren Godsmith, known as "The Incorruptible", was a General Commander in the Droung'Knaqt army. Jarren was a military genius who exhibited tenacity, tactical ingenuity, and great honor. Many were the battles that he saw and great were the deeds that he did.
 
It was held as common knowledge during that time that Jarren was descended of such parentage as could trace their blood directly to Moradin himself. Jarren's line earned the clan-name "Godsmith" as theirs was a line whose smiths could craft wondrous items directly from metals that no other smiths could work.
 
During this time Jarren had been married to a combat medic that had been assigned to his army, and raised a son, Schervick. During the war of The Hundred Warlords he lost his wife. As demanded by honor in that time, when Jarren returned victorious from that campaign (having subdued the Hundred Warlords, exacted tribute and fealty, and brought them into the Droung'Knaqt Empire) he gave his only son into his wife's clan as compensation for losing her. Jarren's wife's name was Charina Fireforge.
 
Schervick Fireforge was many things: Dutiful Son, Loyal Warrior, Gifted Seer, Ardent of the White Lady, Honored Nicht'Luraw. In the decades that followed his mother's death, Schervick served his father as well as his new clan. Jarren was a man of the hammer and shield though, and did not hold with Schervick's gifts of vision or Arcana and the two, while friendly, did not build a familial relationship.
 
Nearly 100 years later, a growing empire to the south - the DrachkParjun - declared war on the Droung'Knaqt. Jarren was commissioned to put the DrackParjun down. Schervick came to Jarren and beseeched his father to let another have this glory. Schervick explained that he had a vision: if Jarren put the DrachkParjun down, the Droung'Knaqt Empire would fall, and the Godsmith clan (at that point Jarren was the only Godsmith in existence) would be stricken from the face of the earth.
 
Jarren was enraged at his son's request; he accused Schervick not only of trying to unman Jarren and make a coward of him, but also of trying to steal Jarren's glory and by doing so jeopardizing the Droung'Knaqt empire. Jarren thrashed the young seer near to death, then left to war in what turned out to be a bloody 70-year-long campaign.
 
Jarren put down the DrachkParjun, but in the doing he fell in love with the Princess Indalia Shieldstone, the only child of DrachkParjun's royal family. He claimed her as his war prize, and after a time he announced his intention to marry her.

Schervick once again approached Jarren; it was the first time in over 80 years that the two had spoken. Schervick renewed his warning to Jarren as the White Lady had shown him: Indalia Shieldstone was already dead, and Jarren and all his children but one would follow. That one, should he be born, would bring about the end of the clan of Godsmith, destroy the Droung'Knaqt empire, and make the Gods weep. Schervick was ready for Jarren's attack, and left his father alone with his anger.
 
Jarren and Indalia had many children over the next decades while Schervick shared his visions among the Kharan'Jhul. But never could any evidence be brought to bear; no other seer had seen what Schervick had. The removal of Jarren's wife would not be met with approval, and among the Kharan'Jhul it was held that doing so would bring the Droung'Knaqt to their knees as readily as NOT doing so. And, as doing nothing afforded the Kharan'Jhul time to perhaps plan, it was decided to do nothing but watch, and protect who we could.
 
As is the case in any civilization, there came a time when a plague descended upon the Droung'Knaqt. In this particular plague the entire Godsmith family was wiped out while their 20th child was only a few years old. Some of Schervick's visions, at last, had come to pass. Many looked to Schervick as the lone survivor of the clan of Godsmith, but every seer in the Kharan'Jhul said no: Schervick had ceased to be Godsmith on the day when he entered the Fireforge clan. One, then, survived. And all the seers agreed: that one would be the vulture that gorged upon the carcass of the Droung'Knaqt Empire.
 
5 decades passed, and a new name entered the Droung'Knaqt Empire: Vorntoque Dramwall. Vorntoque and his wife came out of the hinterlands of what had at one time been the DrachkParjun Empire. It is believed that he was raised in the Wretched Swamps.
 
His wife, it is said, was odd to the extreme: intelligent, and elegant in company but frighteningly dark in solitude. She eschewed the public eye as much as she could, and cloistered herself indoors, claiming to suffer from extreme photosensitivity. She often made mention of things that happened so long ago that only the most learned of scholars might know them. It is said that she had a taste for blood, and sometimes dined on hapless citizens of the empire...especially the elves.
 
In the Empire, Vorntoque was a soldier in the Droung'Knaqt armies when he joined the Tareen'Phol; he was a gifted dispatcher.
 
Vorntoque grew in prominence within the Tareen'Phol and in the political arena of the Droung'Knaqt societal circles, although it was frequently whispered that his wife was more likely the brain behind his standing. Over the course of but a few decades, he had grown from a virtual nobody to a powerful force in the Droung'Knaqt senate.
 
Then the blight, which left him the only survivor of the senate. Vorntoque proclaimed himself emperor, and there were none to challenge him.
 
It is written in the library of the Marin'Thar that Vorntoque had only a few children with his odd wife, and only one survived: a lad named Kervan. Before that son had come of age, his parents plotted his death, as they did not deem him worthy of their bloodline. The child, Kervan, had been warned by Schervick Firforge, and understood their intentions. He fled the Droung'Knaqt Empire, never to be seen again. Kervan begat children that eventually led to a number of dwarven clans, notably:
Ironaxe (a great warrior clan far to the north-east), Granitesoul (long extinct clan of ill repute), Stoutspear (plains-dwellers to the west) and the Stonehammers of Derkenwold.

23
The opening drone ended as it had the last two years: with a multi-chromatic rain of lights floating down from above the grove to settle into the pine needles that carpeted the ground.

Da’khaire watched and listened to the little druid who seemed to reign over the forest’s warders – the Gnarcheon, in her own tongue – as she spoke of those brothers and sisters who had died since the last festival. Da’khaire spent a great deal of time isolated from his brethren, however, as there were not many druids where he lived, west of Kurr and Lake Vallensun, so he didn’t recognize any of the names.

This, he was beginning to understand, was the boring part of the night.

He supposed that if he knew any of the names uttered by the little gnome, it might have a different meaning to him, but as it was this was nothing more than listening to a roster of names of people he had never met.

He was very curious therefore why the half-orc who stood just a stride or two to his right emoted so much at this roll call. It was possible, Da’khaire supposed, that the half-orc knew some, many, or even all of the names called out. But one might not expect quite the level of happiness that the half-orc showed during this funeral account. With every name uttered by the little gnome, the half-orc seemed to grow happier.

Da’khaire watched as the goliath that had earlier been wrestling – the very same who had led the drone – leaned into the half-orc and held a close and quiet conversation with him. After that conversation, the half-orc seemed to settle in and attend with the sort of sobriety that such a telling warranted.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Bareglar attended happily while the little gnome spoke to him. She opened her conversation with a remembrance of those Brothers and Sisters who had returned to the Great Cycle over the last year. There were few more than a score of such departed, and as she uttered name after name Bareglar watched as one spectral spirit after another graced her presence at the center fire. There were a few feral gnomes, more than one human, a great antlered centaur, and Bareglar was amazed to see his own wolf friend in the front of the audience when the little gnome uttered the name “Sharchute”. The wolf started straight into Bareglar’s eyes and smiled.

In his weakened state through the cold moons, Bareglar had not had the mental acuity to understand that his wolf-savior had been of such intelligence. Thinking on it, he could not until now have told whether the wolf was a male or female, though the spirit-form was that of a she-wolf. He was also not until then aware that the she-wolf might carry an orcish name. ”Sharchute” in his father’s tongue meant “Delivering one”.

In this confusion, he looked about, and met Bal-Jhor’s eyes. The goliath was standing next to him, and leaned down to whisper to him. “I did not know Sharchute.” He said, “But I know her story and I will tell you tomorrow, if you wish. Know now, however, that she was no typical wolf. She was chosen by Her and through her life whelped many Wolf Lords. Some of her children are here tonight, others are in distant lands doing Her will.”

That thought brought great comfort to Bareglar. “Thank you.” He said. “I would be grateful to know more…tomorrow.” Bal-Jhor placed a huge and heavy, but comforting, hand on Bareglar’s shoulder and nodded earnestly.

24
Game Log / Forest Keep Session 39 “Ancient Halls with Dirty Walls”
« on: April 11, 2014, 04:41:14 PM »
Thanks, WF

25
The deep, constant vibration of the drone, delivered by the gathered gnarcheon, was felt in the bodies of all who were at the grove that night. Pine needles danced upon the floor of the forest in response to the drone, and lights from each of the four fires flowed through the night on the energy currents driven by the drone and seemingly guided by the four Chankathur who threw their wild spirits into the night.

Then Maragarn’s flute joined the voices of the Ritual, and the swirling halo that encircled the Grove of Needles reached in towards the center of the circle. Towards the white light that thrust up from Mahiya’s fire.

The physical world in the grove quivered with the power of the drone. The divine fires put forth their lights according to the will of the song that Varshya sang, Eswarth and Mirriam beat, Cailyder graced, and Maragarn knitted together. Every living thing in the grove was joined as one body for a brief moment.

Then, when the drone seemed set to break stones asunder, and the song of the Chankathur seemed set to shatter the lines that kept two from becoming one, the lights all mingled together in a flash of brilliant luminence that left a spectral image in one’s eyes and rained down upon the grove as from a Vallenwood. In that instant, when the fires’ lights all joined in one silent explosion, silence fell suddenly upon the Grove of Needles. The drone abruptly ended.

Most of the convened gnarcheon had participated in this ritual in the past and knew what to expect. Some who had not before participated had been briefed by their mentors and preceptors. Still there were others for whom this was a real experience; these few could only look on in wonder, somehow able to see with great clarity Mahiya’s fire and the few participants there. As though the distance that separated each gnarcheon with Mahiya’s fire was but a few strides.

They looked on in silence while a tiny figure stepped forward, somehow looking simultaneously directly into the eyes of everyone present, and she spoke softly though the power of the ritual brought her matronly voice throughout the Grove to all who were there, speaking to each in their native language…such was the power of the ritual: to bring all gnarcheon together as one, so that all understood each other.

“Welcome, children,” Shankaria said, “to the Grove of Needles. This year there is much to speak about, much to learn, much to share. We have come far, but there is more work before us than there is behind.”

Bareglar sobbed his joy, recognizing in an instant his true family.

26
Game Log / Session 38 "The Iron Orc"
« on: March 06, 2014, 08:11:20 AM »
Thanks, WF. I appreciate the effort that it takes to pull these things together.

27
Game Log / Session 27 - Captain Tindarin
« on: February 11, 2014, 03:46:59 PM »
Play Date: Unknown, 2013

Players: Huntmaster Jarmok (Conlon the Elder), & Darian Firefist (Buccella the characterless)

Qwydeon Albyr Basque VY. 237 (June 5)

In the morning, Sayer got all craven on us and went back on the boat. He claimed that he was looking for "fire wood".

Jarmok and Darian forged a path in-land to approach Ivy Berry from the North. Hopefully, in the daylight, the resident Shadow Riders might be able to be overtaken. Guile, tact, and no doubt bravery will be needed as well.

The companions came upon a farmland, overlooked by a watch tower. Jarmok snuck up into the fields and got within a few feet of one of the guards watching over the fields. The guard was clearly a Shadow Rider. Not wanting to start a ruckus that might be overseen from the watch tower, Jarmok crept away from the field guard. He came upon a field worker who told him that he needed to get out...the fields are closely watched from the tower in addition to guards in the fields themselves (nothing we didn't already know by then). She did state that the tower had a few Kurr guards in addition to Shadow Rider guards. They needed Kurr to send troops.

Darian and Jarmok decided to attempt to take the tower, and thus boldly walked up to the tower's gate.

The two were stopped by a Shadow Rider guard, and they told him that they were looking for Captain Tandrin...they had news from Kurr. The guard was suspicious, but he was a quick kill too. The duo pressed into the tower. However, it did start a sequence of combat that was hard-fought...nearly to the loss.

At the end of it, two shadewolves were dead, numerous Shadow Riders were dead, all of the Kurr guards that were resident in the tower were also dead, and Jarmok & Darian had captured Captain Tandrin (a female Shadow Rider captain who was extremely tough to best). At first sight, Captain Tandrin became affectionately known as "Captain big tits". I'm not sure why! :)

The companions interrogated Tandrin, and learned the following (if it be trustworthy):

    In the boathouse, there are supplies & bodies
    An "associate" is supposed to animate the bodies
    There shouldn't be any other people there
    There are 3 Shadow Riders in the fields
    Tandrin was born a Shadow Rider - "Not all of us take the vow of Umbrage"
    The goal is the conquest of Kurr
    All of the bodies that are set for animation are out of Kurr
    When asked whether there were other Shadow Rider cells, she said "most assuredly", though for the protection of the overall Empire, she did not know where they might be
    The population of the tower would have been 3 Kurr guards (all now dead), 4 Shadow Riders (3 bodies at this point accounted for)


In the tower Darian found quite a bit of correspondence between Tandrin and Fitzsimmons. These correspondences indicate that the Ivy Berry cell has been in operation for about a month-and-a-half.

Also, they learned that Fitzsimmons' superior was the same as Tandrin's. With fire, she uttered a name: Nightstar.

Believing that they had gotten as much as they could from Tandrin, they searched the remainder of the tower, finding in a war room on the second story the last Shadow Rider...dead.

28
Game Log / Session 26 - Like Shooting Dwarves in a Barrel
« on: February 11, 2014, 03:39:17 PM »
Play Date: October 26, 2013
Players: Councilor Sayer (Phin of the Vision), Huntmaster Jarmok (Johan the Elder), & Darian Firefist (Chassic the characterless)

Qwydeon Albyr Syncath VY. 237 (June 3)

After the evidence of Fitzsimmon's treason was sealed and delivered, Archduke Corwynn had an assignment for the companions:

Search Markel's warehouse (from where Argen McKenzie’s family was rescued). Corwynn Would like to know what’s being trafficked into and out of Kurr. Need an inventory. Also, we need to try to find out where these shipments are coming from and / or going to.

Note: Markell's is a distinguished family and upstanding citizens of Kurr (hopefully). Erikarn Markell is the son of the owner, and he accompanies the trio (and the detachment of guards put at their disposal) to the warehouse.

In the basement of the warehouse, where the fight on the night before occurred, the group proceeded to inventory the barrels that were there.

Barrel 1: body of a dead male dwarf (stabbed in the back of the head, dock laborer).
Barrel 2: body of a dead male elf (Fop, dead ~1 week, stabbed in chest)

In all 18 bodies are found. The demographics are:
    Mid- & Lower-class
    Male & female
    All races
    All dead within the last week
    All stabbed...nice, clean stab wounds from sharp blades...wounds expertly placed


There are crates here too, and they contain foodstuffs and weapons.
The weapons are smithed by many different smiths, from all over the country.

Essentially, there seems to be nothing that ties these victims together, and there's also nothing to point to a specific smithy that might be supplying the SR cause.

The companions decide to question Jeeza MacKenzie, who had been captive there for some time...she might have some insight.

    Crates & barrels came in and out constantly
    She heard Ivy Berry mentioned more than once (Ivy Berry is a fishing & farming community on the far side of Lake Vallensun)
    The people working in this subterranean dock weren't "normal". They had dusky skin.


Looks like a trip to Ivy Berry will be in order. A man called Dorith is Magistrate of that community.

FIRST: Let us wait to see who shows up here tonight.

Sometime between sun-down and midnight, a small dingy pulls into the dock. The dingy is occupied by two men: one dark-cloaked human, and one scale-clad human.

The companions set an ambush, and the dark-cloaked man is killed. The scale-clad man is eventually captured, as he found himself swimming in scale!

The scale-clad fellow spoke pretty readily (it's amazing how the threat of fire loosens a coward's tongue!!) We learned as follows:

    The boat is from Ivy Berry (it is the Ivy Berry Annie); it is here for a pick-up, and is due back before dawn
    The boaters identify the destination dock by the color of the lanterns on them (doesn't know if it's the same technique as docks in other places) - we later took care to look at the lantern on this dock...it is a very normal-looking lantern with green glass. Along the docks, lanterns might have any of a number of different colors of glass...more than one are green
    The sun hurts the Shadow Riders; They can't move normally
    After pick-ups, deliveries are made to Ivy Berry; Boats are guided into the community by a light that only Shadow Riders can see.

Sayer then issued a task for the Kurr guard: Take a small boat under the docks. We would like to know how many of these docks have what we have come to call "under-docks".

It is late...to bed now, and on the morrow: Ivy Berry.

Qwydeon Albyr Arkus VY. 237 (June 4)

With Sayer's accompaniment, we embarked upon a very comfortable boat to Ivy Berry.

Landing on the docks of Ivy Berry, we were approached by a haggard-looking fellow (haggard, although he yet bore the posture of faded authority). He introduced himself as Dorth - he is Magistrate of Ivy Berry. Dorith was quite nervous, and clearly frightened. He begged the companions to leave, for the sake of the village. With some uneasiness, we agree to leave. Dorith then whispers, "They are here."

"How many?" We asked quietly.
"Less than 10...in the boathouse."

With this information, we took again to the water. Once out of sight, we took the boat north with the intent to disembark and make our way via land, circling back into Ivy Berry.

We camped that night, listening to Shade Wolves calling each other.

29
In Character Discussions / Gnarcheon's Festival at the Grove of Needles
« on: February 10, 2014, 04:32:04 PM »
To the west of the Dale of Wolves stand the glacier-tipped Dragonteeth mountains. Some of the run-off from those glaciers create two great rivers that careen down the mountain slopes and come together to flow as one under the Tower of Zebulon, thereafter falling four hundred feet to carve a great gorge in the valley below. It is said that in that place, Istisha makes love to Grumbar.

Standing near the falls in the valley below, one is deafened and shaken by the vibration of the water smashing into the ground. You do not have to be in the water proper for the falls to fully envelop you…it carries its power to you. Through you, more aptly put.

Shankaria couldn’t help but think of Zebulon’s Falls when Bal-Jhor’s drone filled the Grove of Needles. The mist and fog that was so persistent at Zebulon’s Falls were here replaced by the chromatic ghostly fingers from the four fires, and the Falls’ thunderous voice was replaced by the Drone of the assembled Gnarcheon. But the drone filled her body as much as the halo of ghostly lights filled her eyes.

When the Drone had been lifted on the voices of all Gnarchon around the perimeter of the Grove of Needles, then did Shankaria take it up, as did Kaltya and the few others who were at Mahiya’s fire.

The tendrils of light from the four childrens’ fires reached towards the center, as if attracted by the Drone that was taken up there, and the light that was a flowing halo constricted to become more of a dome. Shankaria looked to Maragarn. It was time for him to complete the Ritual.

30
Game Log / Session 37 A Torch in the Dark
« on: February 04, 2014, 11:15:14 AM »
Thanks, WF. I'll consider "polishing" this at a later time. It certainly captures the salient points!

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