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Session 10 - Are we home yet?!?!

Started by Dray, April 01, 2006, 05:08:32 PM

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Session 10.0


Erinalia = Fraz
Garbhan = Mudge
T?riad = Wildfire
Scale = Matt (alt)
Dariooq = Johan (alt)

Written By The Incredibly talented GM - Dray

The small little white Darfellan waif stood in front of the hulking frame of Dariooq. Although she was clearly but a child, the attention and reverence the others in the Village spoke volumes.

?You must go quickly to Scale?s village, they have need of you.? She said to the man knelt before her.

?When?? he asked.

?You must leave immediately.? Orca said calmly, but an uncharacteristic tear fell from her eye. In all of Dariooq?s experiences of his short life, earthquakes, battles with Sahuagin, and what have you, this moment was the most frightening in his life. This girl had never shed a tear in the five years she breathed.

The tribe needed to hear or see no more, the villagers rushed into action, packing foodstuffs and supplies for the adventurers. The adventurers caught off guard, could only watch as food was taken from the very hands and placed into bags and packs.

[color=darkred:c2286c8c61]The adventurers quickly asked the darfellan for anything they thought they might need and were off.[/color]

Prepared for the journey, all of you turn towards Dariooq, and with a nod he leads Scale and the rest of you across the makeshift wood bridges and paths of the Grotto. Following him, you work your way up a winding path in the rock to a large cave opening close to the rough ceiling. Pushing aside the leather tarp door, all of you walk into a tall but narrow cavern beyond. Although double the height of your guide, it is just barely wide enough to allow his passage. It appears to be a natural formation and without illumination, also appears to be quite dark beyond the leather covered entrance.

As if reading your thoughts, Dariooq picks up a readied torch on the floor and has it lit quickly. With the flames flickering back in your direction from a light breeze, he walks in, twisting his torso at a slight angle and holding the torch in the lead.

Your group follows him for quite some time, in a cavern that is even in elevation and away from the ocean behind you, further into the mountain. The floor of the path isn?t level in many places and each of you must be careful of your footing. Scale and Dariooq seem to be very familiar with the path, avoiding the small pitfalls quite easily.

They also appear confident on where they are going, and it is easily surmised they have taken this path many times before.

After about a hand of time, Dariooq finally makes his way to an eventual end to the passage. On the wall in front of him, an ancient plated iron door over 10 feet tall and four feet wide, blocks the way. A large iron grate opening, in between rivets of steel, is letting a considerable breeze through.

From a pouch, Dariooq procures a key and with a bit of effort with his webbed hands, unlocks the door. The heavy iron portal swings to the side silently and without effort.

At first, a gush of air bursts through, as if it was waiting entry, but the zephyr quickly disseminates into less of a gust. The torch flickering in the breeze, Dariooq steps forth and onto the landing of a spiral staircase, its passage carved upwards through the very rock.

?It will take some time to get to the top, we must pace ourselves,? he states to Erinalia, knowing she will translate.

Dariooq takes the lead and Scale moves to the back to cover the rear of the group as it begins the ascent up the spiral staircase. Your steps soon echo from both ahead and behind, and the group has to make many stops from the strenuous exertion.

Just when you think your legs will erupt in flames, fueled from the burning soreness, you reach a crack in the outer wall. One that Dariooq slips through, instead of continuing up the staircase. It appears to have been hand dug some time ago and is large enough for Dariooq to walk through without crouching. After only a couple dozen feet you soon realize the path?s purpose. For at the end of the tunnel appears to be an opening to the outside of the mountain you have spent the last several hours in.

The hand dug tunnel empties the group into a small cave that is about 10 feet in diameter and height. At the opposite end is an opening to the outside. Night has long since fallen, as the exit is fairly dark, the torch light masks the ability to detect starlight.

[color=darkred:c2286c8c61]Scale's and Dariooq's preturnatural senses told them something was amiss. Scale throws a Sahuagin leg out the cave entrance and a fooled Blackscale Lizardfolk takes the bait. Quite ingenius, for a lizard.[/color]

Three nine-foot tall, heavily-muscled reptilian humanoids erupt from their hiding spots. You recognize this race, for one of their brethren attacked you in the Dwarven Keep. Deep-socketed eyes and flat nasal openings give its face the appearance of a skull. Its scales are black, and a leathery crest running from the top of its head to the middle of its back rises up as it sees you. As they charge and jump from hiding they grab their great clubs with talon-tipped fingers and snarl revealing a row of viscous fangs.

[color=darkred:c2286c8c61]Battle ensued, despite the GM?s fearsome description, the three Blackscale no match for the Barbarians (Scale and Dariooq, alternate characters who have overshadowed whoever those other three main characters are, I forget their names, check the top of this post if care).[/color]

With the Blackscale killed, your party has a chance to look around.

You find yourselves halfway up the mountainside. Around you are the tropical plants and trees you are familiar with, but it is less dense on this angled terrain, and also shorter in stature at this high altitude. This allows your group to scan the surrounding terrain in almost every direction. A mile below your position, the dense jungle line is defined as it runs from the southwest to the northeast. You can discern the drop off of the cliff-face beyond it, bordering the ocean. The very beach you stood on this morning lies just below. Behind you, and above the opening of the tunnel you emerged from, is miles and miles of ascending mountainside.

Dariooq starts to walk away on a very slightly defined path that runs northeast and at a slight upward angle to the elevation. The suggestion to break camp is lost by the constant reminder of the missions? urgency. Scale?s people need your help. So tired from the already strenuous day, you trek on.

[color=darkred:c2286c8c61]I think I remember asking the group to roll a constitution check for fatigue, they all succeeded, but took the warning a bit more seriously than I had hoped. See me entry below.[/color]

It soon becomes apparent that Dariooq intends to lead the group around the northern circumference of the mountain from west to east. Walking at a slight incline, you walk over roots, around, over and under boulders and through the stunted vegetation. Despite the cooler temperature of the higher altitude, the jungle vegetation flourishes in sporadic quantity.

The exertion of walking starts to make itself apparent with the soreness of muscles throughout your legs.

[color=darkred:c2286c8c61]I think it was about this time that the party reasoned that they couldn?t get there from here without resting. Showing up to a knife fight in an exhausted state never a good idea. So they ruined about three hours of DM work and decided to sleep for 8 hours. Bastards, all of them.[/color]

Trek to the Swamp of Sorrow

For about the last half-hand the jungle vegetation has been quickly changed with each step. The familiar tropical vegetation has become less and less frequent, and the coniferous vegetation usually found on mountains tops has become more prevalent. But as you walk on, the shrubs, plants and trees get larger and larger in proportion until they are gigantic to the standard specimens found at home.

It also has been apparent that as you have traversed this side of the mountain that you are on a high plateau. This mountain your traversed was one of many that stood guard between the ocean behind and what appears to be a vast swamp forest. But it is a swamp like none other you have ever seen.

The tallest of pine trees, with trunks that are as wide in diameter as farmhouses, stand before you. Under the huge leaves of these trees, which make up the high canopy, is choppy undergrowth. Hundreds of rivulets of water travel to and from thousands of small pools and puddles amongst these hedgerows, small bushes and rushes. Fallen broken branches, many small enough only to be a hindrance, but some large enough to deter your path are everywhere.

Many long climbing vines hang from the dense canopy above. Many more climb the pine giants in a feeble attempt to reach sunlight.

The thick canopy above blocks all moon and starlight
[color=darkred:c2286c8c61](well, it was supposed to be night, but they went and slept, so I made it pour on them in revenge, the canopy blocked out the gray (as death) sky instead).[/color] You stand at the edge of that shadow, between the world that is the forest swamp and the land of the mountain jungle.

?It has always been known as the Swamp of Sorrow,? Erinalia says in a far-off voice.

The night
[color=darkred:c2286c8c61](day ? damn them)[/color] air is far cooler then you remember it ever being at the outpost. Soon all in the group are rubbing their hands briskly, covering in whatever clothing they have and looking to the torches[color=darkred:c2286c8c61] (HA! To wet for torches ? still had to edit on the fly though ? damn them)[/color] for warmth.

Scale gives all warm-blooded adventurers a stick wax that keeps the bugs off[b:c2286c8c61]
[color=darkred:c2286c8c61](Should have made it attract them.)[/color] [/b:c2286c8c61] and Dariooq tells the group they are headed to the Poison Dusk village, allies of the Lizardfolk as they are Lizardfolk themselves.

The night air is frigid, the want for having a torch goes beyond the need for light.
[color=darkred:c2286c8c61](Had to cut that whole sentence out).[/color] Dariooq and Scale expertly lead you through undergrowth and obstacles, on a path that only this hunting pair could follow.

Sounds of the Swamp are in abundance, the drone of the blood-seeking insects is the most apparent. A swarm of them completely surrounds the group as it ventures through the swamp. Yet not one, not a single one, defies the stench radius created by the wax, which seems to reach the edge of your illumination.
[color=darkred:c2286c8c61](Note to self never mention illumination again in this context.)[/color]

Once in awhile the party catches a renegade swathe of the swarm as it briefly encroaches, one arm of the swarm contains hundreds of bugs. Without the wax, every last ounce of blood would be lost to the Swamp.

[color=darkred:c2286c8c61]Anyway, to make a long story short, the group finished my ill-prepared spread sheet, so I attacked them with a ?legendary? (of like 2 seconds) creature I found some obscure pocket of the monster manual III(?) and then they reached the Poison Dusk Village, or actually they didn?t. It wasn?t ready so I simply had them move to Florida.[/color]

[color=green:c2286c8c61]Man, can I enter logs or what? This was the coolest, I like, should write a novel.[/color]