Author Topic: Session 15 Summary  (Read 3247 times)

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Offline David Roomes

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Session 15 Summary
« on: November 13, 2016, 05:33:00 PM »
Session 15  Summary

The Player Characters  (aka the "Heroes")

Winlock – orc/dwarf barbarian, wearing heavy chain mail armor and wielding a big war hammer
William – the party’s wizard, human male, robed and armed with a broad array of spells
Belkor – the dashing human swordsmen/mariner wielding twin scimitars
Listig – the elven thief/archer equipped with several different enchanted arrows

The Current Non Player Characters

Halimir - An elven ranger, who has fought along side the party for several game sessions now.

We had left off with the party having just arrived on the docks of the city of Freeport. Freeport is a large  capital city built around a huge central harbor. Three enemy ships were pursuing the party and were only a half hour behind.

The party handing a bag of coins to the captain of the Cloud Hawk and gave him instructions. He was to contact the Harbor Master and warn him of the approaching three ships. He was also to tell the city officials about the occupation of Anquaran forces (i.e. the "Black Guard") in western Mercia. However, he was not to mention the party.

The party wasn’t sure what the three Black Guard ships would do when they reached the harbor. Nor did they know how many soldiers might be on those three ships. Having told the captain to alert the authorities, the party decided the best thing to do would be to get out of sight as quickly as possible and see how things played out. They ducked into the nearest tavern… the Fairwind Tavern.

While the others drank, Belkor went to the Mariner’s Guild office and asked what ships were in dock and available for work. He got the list and headed out. Several of the available ships were too large for his needs, but then he found the Wart Hog, captained by Sancho. It was a smaller vessel and would be about the right size for several passengers going on a long journey. He spoke with Sancho and hired the ship, exchanging some payment up front for a guarantee that the ship would be ready in four hours and was prepared to take five passengers and sail all the way to Aggradar.

This last bit was actually a deliberate lie… the first of several intentional misdirections. The party was actually heading to Qeshir which, according to the witch’s map, was where the other three talismans were to be found. However, everyone they would come into contact with would get a story about them heading to Aggradar. This was a ploy they had all decided on before they had arrived. They knew (or at least strongly suspected) that the Black Guard had some type of magic that could read minds of prisoners. If they read the minds of anyone that the party encountered, they wanted the Black Guard to get this false information.

Having secured passage on the Warthog, Belkor returned to the Fairwind Tavern and joined the rest of the party. While they drank and talked, Listig loitered near the door, smoking a pipe and keeping an eye on the harbor and the three approaching ships.

Before long, they began seeing activity build. First a messenger boy ran past, then a pair of city guards. Soon, they began seeing groups of men running about and long boats going to and from the Harbor Master’s keep. Men were seen rapidly running to ships and longboats, calling out orders and throwing off lines. It seemed the forces of the harbor master were getting ready to defend the harbor.

Before long, several Mercian ships were facing off with the three Black Guard ships in a tense confrontation just outside the harbor entrance.

There was a man in Freeport who William knew, a man named Merrick Druth who was a friend of William’s  former mentor. Although not related by blood, William had always affectionately referred to the man as “uncle”. The party decided to go see this uncle as William assured them he would be able to help.

At Uncle Merrick’s place, the party received a warm welcome. They were given food and drink and a place to rest and hideout for a short time while they planned their next move. William told his uncle about their adventures, the relic and so forth. All of it was the truth except for the part where they said they were heading to Aggradar to retrieve the other three missing talismans. This again, was a deliberate misdirection.

The party wanted to recharge the “gauntlet of fireballs”, but recharging it required the use of the delayed blast fireball spell, a spell that William did not possess and was not powerful enough to cast. But someone at the local wizards guild probably could.

Uncle Merrick was on good terms with several members of the local wizards’ guild and told the party of a fire mage at the guild who could probably help. He even penned a letter of introduction for William to help secure the assistance they needed.  With the letter in hand, the party said their goodbyes and departed.

Before going to the wizard’s guild, they decided to go back toward the harbor and see what was going on. When they got there, they saw that the confrontation of ships was rearranged. One of the black Anquaran ships had pushed past the blockade and was heading toward the harbor mouth. At the same time, Listig, who had the sharpest eyes, saw several large spouts of flame on a distant stone walkway near one edge of the harbor. When each spout of flame cleared, there was a robed figure standing there. It was the same robed figures they had seen fighting along side the Anquaran soldiers. They have iron masks, black robes, iron staves and use fire magic. [DM Note – these individuals are known as “Infernal Knights” and they are the elite warrior mages of Anquar]. Listig told the rest of the party what he had seen. Based on the description, William deduced that, despite the fiery display, it must have been some kind of short range teleport spell. The party guessed that these infernal knights had teleported from one of the three  ships into the city.

No time to waste. The party immediately headed to the wizards’ guild. The letter of introduction got them in the door and face to face with the fire mage. Initally, the old mage balked at the idea of how much magic he would need to expend to fully recharge the magic gauntlet. But once he realized that the party were serious about paying, they bartered. When he discovered that they had a large chunk of chrylomar in their possession, he agreed to do it in exchange for the chrylomar. An hour later, our heroes departed the wizards’ guild hall with a fully charged “gauntlet of fireballs”. [DM Note- just to refresh your memory, the gauntlet has six charges – that is, it can unleash six full scale fireball spells before being depleted].

Again, the party wanted to know what was happening down at the harbor. Listig stealthily made his way down to the harbor and climbed up to a second story balcony for a good look. The situation had changed again. One of the black ships had docked while the other two had positioned themselves in the mouth of the harbor, apparently in an attempt to prevent any ship from leaving.

There was a large crowd of at least two hundred people gathered at the edge of the harbor. A man in black robes was standing on a stack of crates at the very edge of the harbor by the black ship. All around him were Anquaran soldiers and officers. Listig listened to what the man was saying. He spoke in the Southern tongue, but had an odd accent. His booming voice could be heard by all.

Fair Citizens of Freeport, hear me. We are a diplomatic envoy from the far kingdom of Anquar in Qeshir, far to the south. Be it known that we seek four criminals, namely William a human conjurer who consorts with demons, Belkor a vile human swordsman known for despicable ways, Winlock, an uncivilized dwarven barbarian and Listig Felchkun, an elven thief and murderer. These four men of ill repute are sought for the theft of property from King Dalmoran, The Ruler of Anquar. These four men carry an item of great value which belongs to the King. This item is a talisman, fashioned from gold,triangular in shape and most curiously wrought. It bears strange markings upon it and a blood red jewel at its center. This relic is ensorcelled with dark powers and it poses grave danger to anyone who touches it. For the safety of your city and yourselves, this item should be returned to our care as soon as possible. These four criminals are sometimes known as the Knights of Endroad Keep and have, of late, been waging terror and war upon innocent villagers in the west of your kingdom. They have raided, pillaged and murdered without remorse. To escape justice in the west, they have fled with their stolen prize to this fair city. They have arrived in this harbor this very morning. King Dalmoran is a generous lord and has authorized a reward of 10,000 gold drokmire to any man, noble or common, with information that leads to the recovery of the stolen talisman. However, be warned, if the talisman is willfully kept from him, King Dalmoran will unleash his armies upon Mercia and this city will be trampled to dust. We beseech you to choose the more reasonable path. Turn over these four criminals and return the talisman to its rightful owner. Thank you for your attention. May Semorjon’s blessing be upon you this day.

After a short time, the crier repeated the message to the crowd of astonished onlookers. At the same time, Anquaran soldiers were passing around copies of the wanted poster showing the likeness of the party members, the same wanted poster that the party had seen in the ruins of Endroad Keep.

Listig scanned the crowed, the harbor, the docks. He noticed that he did not see any of the "stalkers", those stealthy ranger types.  Then again, those stalkers were stealthy bastards and obviously trying to remain unseen. Listig did, however, see several infernal knights and Anquaran soldiers. They were easy to spot because of their black armor and black cloaks.

Officials from the harbor master's office and city guards were talking with the Black Guard officers. It seemed that the harbor master and his men were trying to contain the Black Guard army to the harbor and, at the same time, avoid a political catastrophe. However, there was too much confusion down in the crowd and too many people. Groups of Black Guard soldiers being led by infernal knights were splitting off from the crowds and heading into the city.  Obviously, they were determined to search the city for the player characters regardless of any protests from the local officials. Those in charge had, so far, successfully avoided an armed confrontation.

Listig hastily returned to the group and reported all he had seen and heard. The party decided it was time to spread a few more rumors about where they were going before fleeing the city. Belkor, who knew Freeport well, led the party away from the harbor and toward a tavern named the “Ale Drowned Mariner”.

The party stuck to back alleys and out of sight as much as possible, with hoods drawn forth.

Belkor knew he could find an old associate there, a grum named Glassjaw, at the Ale Drowned Mariner. Glassjaw and Belkor had known each other for years and had sailed together, but Belkor didn’t trust him.  Glassjaw also owed Belkor a large sum of money from a card game years ago and had managed to avoid payment with various excuses through the years.

When they arrived, William cast an invisibility spell on Belkor. While the rest of the party hid, Belkor entered the tavern invisibly. The Ale Drowned Mariner is a huge tavern, built around a central fighting pit. A huge “betting board” hangs above the bar.

Belkor found Glassjaw sitting amidst a group of other sailors, talking about the arrival of the Anquaran ships and everything else. It seemed the whole tavern was talking about the “four criminals” and the talisman that this army sought. It was the talk of the town.

Belkor waited at the edge of the tavern, invisible and quiet. When Glassjaw finally went to go relieve himself,  Belkor followed. Out at the back of the tavern, Belkor waited until they were alone and then confronted Glassjaw. He spoke invisibly, a disembodied menacing voice in the grum’s ear. 

“Hold fast, little man. Do you know me by my voice?”

The startled grum tried to get away and draw his blade, but Belkor grabbed his arm and held him firmly in place. “Well, do you know me?” he growled.

“B-Belkor.”  The grum stammered.

“That’s right. And today I’ve come to collect the debt you owe me.”

“I don’t have the money, but if you give me a few hours-“

“Forgot the money. I need a favor. You do this for me and we’re square. Debt repaid in full”.

“I’m listening”.

“I want you to go down to the harbor, right now. There’s a boat down there called the Wart Hog. Captain’s a man named Sancho”.

“I know him”.

“I want you tell Sancho to cast off without us and run the blockade at the mouth of the harbor. I want you to tell him to head east along the coast and meet me in Brian’s Port in two days. Tell him if he meets me there, I’ll pay him triple what I’ve already paid him.  You got that?”

“Why would he risk running that blockade?"

 “Sancho is going to take us to Aggradar and I’m going to make him a rich man for it. He’ll run that blockade and he’ll make it to Brian’s Port. Two days. Tell him.”

Glassjaw readily agreed and the two parted. Belkor then stealthily left, circled the tavern and met back up with the party. As the party headed toward the western city gate, Listig followed Glassjaw as he hurriedly left the tavern. However, instead of heading down toward the docks, Glassjaw searched until he found a group of Anquaran soldiers. He called out to them and then rapidly told them everything that had happened, that Belkor had confronted him (invisibly) at the Ale Drowned Mariner. A moment later, Glassjaw was leading a group of the Anquaran soldiers back to the tavern.

Listig took to the rooftops and began heading back toward the west city gate to meet the party. From that vantage point, he saw other units of Anquaran soldiers from different parts of the city, all converging on the Ale Drowned Mariner tavern.

Listig met the party at the west gate and reported. Glassjaw betraying him was exactly what Belkor had expected.

At the west gate, the party found several Anquaran soldiers. They were checking everyone who passed through the gate.

The party paid a street urchin a gold piece to lure the soldiers away.

“Wait a minute, you’re the ones they’re looking for...” said the street urchin.

“Yes” the party replied, rather annoyed.

“FIVE gold pieces!” the street urchin demanded. The party reluctantly handed over 4 more gold coins and the street urchin smiled. Deal! He then ran up to the gate, yelling that he had seen the Knights of Endroad keep and pointed off in the distance. Half of the black armored soldiers followed him. Three stayed behind.

The party wished to avoid a battle. Even one they were sure they could win would attract too much attention. So they used a combination of invisibility and alter self spells and a well timed distraction to snuck through the gate, following a large wagon as it exited the gate.

The party quickly put as much distance between them and the city as possible. They got off the main road quickly and travelled overland, cutting through forest and farmland as needed. They traveled without stopping until the sun went down and then camped in a small forest. They made no fire that night.

The next day they did the same, travelling south, off of the road and away from the coast, avoiding all contact with others.  The party had left a lot of bread crumbs back in Freeport. No matter who they questioned or probed with telepathy spells, the Anquaran army would get the same story – that the party was meeting the Warthog in Brian’s port and ultimately planned on heading to the continent of Aggradar.

Now, travelling south, toward the town of Three Docks, they were confident that they had shaken all pursuit and they would not encounter anyone. As they travelled south, it started to get windy and rainy.

Late afternoon the next day, they arrived at the town of Three Docks, amidst a blustery wind storm.  Three Docks was an unwalled fishing town set in a deep natural harbor. While most of the party laid low at a dock side tavern, Belkor quietly and discreetly inquired about ships. There were five ships in port. They ended up choosing a two masted ship named the Falling Ash. Belkor met and negotiated with the captain. They told him that they wanted transport for five individuals to Aggradar and were willing to pay a hefty sum of money in advance for discreet transport and a departure as soon as possible. The captain initially said no, until they showed him a bag of gold. He could have that bag now and another bag at the end of the journey. He agreed and said he could have the ship ready in just a few hours.

Before nightfall, they boarded the ship and left.  As it so happened, they passed a huge Anquaran ship entering the town’s port, but the Anquaran ship made no change in course. There was no way that the Anquarans could know the party was on that ship and they still had the anti-scrying talisman with them.

The Falling Ash left Three Docks in its wake and headed out to deep sea.

Only once they were well out of sight of land did they tell the captain their true destination and change course. They persuaded him with another large bag of gold.
The weather turned bad almost immediately and a massive storm lay on the horizon. The captain wanted to turn back, but they convinced him otherwise. Over the next two days, as the ship tried to head south, the storm battered the ship and pushed them west relentlessly. On the evening of the second, the ship struck rocky shoals at the foot of small island. For more than an hour, the ship was battered between waves and rocky shoals. Only through some fine seamanship and all hands helping out on deck to they manage to push off of the rocks and get back out to open sea.

The hull of the ship was damaged and leaking, but they patched the seams and cracks with tar and straw and cloth as best they could. The repairs held for while, but needed to be re-patched more than once on the journey.

The map that the party had obtained from the witch had three locations in Qeshir marked as the locations of the three missing talismans. One was in the Borderlands between Padashan and Anqaur, one was in the south eastern corner of the Padashan Empire near the Broadlands and the Fekwar Hills. The third was far to the east, near the Darijun Jungle.

The party decided to head toward the second of these three. The nearest city of significant size was the town of Visaal so that was their destination.

Finally, after several days of sailing south and east, the ship sighted land, the continent of Qeshir. During the last couple of days, the repairs failed and the hull began leaking badly. The party and the ship’s crew took turns bailing water from the lower decks in order to keep the ship afloat. For more than thirty hours, they bailed water and hugged the coastline as they made their way along the coast and down into the Bay of Arratan.

The ship finally arrived, storm battered and leaking badly, after twelve days at sea. They limped into the harbor of the town of Visaal.

This is where we ended the session. The ship has just docked.

DM Notes -

This session, session 15, was a completely peaceful session. There was no combat in this session. No one even drew a blade!

This is the first time any group of player characters has reached the continent of Qeshir. I have never had any player adventure in these lands so, starting next session, everything will be completely new to them, even to those who have played in Khoras for years.

David M. Roomes
Creator of the World of Khoras

Offline tanis

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Re: Session 15 Summary
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2016, 11:57:54 AM »
I'm excited to hear their reaction to the new and wondrous land. Anquar and the Talismans were always among my favorite bits of Khoras.
He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.

Offline sid6.7

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Re: Session 15 Summary
« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2016, 04:18:06 PM »
fantastic story line david well done...
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