Author Topic: Session 30 Summary  (Read 58 times)

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Offline David Roomes

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Session 30 Summary
« on: October 18, 2018, 08:34:13 PM »
Session 30 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
Halimir - An elven archer/ranger. Good tracker. Expert archer.


The Current Non Player Characters

"Humble" Almahdi - A likable Padashani beggar with quick wit. Talkative. Funny. Fluent in several languages. Street smart, but somewhat cowardly.
Grim Rigor- A huge ogre warrior. A former slave and gladiator. Extremely tough. Good in a fight. Cured of a zombie infection by Belkor.


----

At the end of last session, the party began a sea voyage, traveling from Herota to the town of Tenlay in Anquar. They were aboard a small Juenta trade ship with their wagon on the deck of the ship, lashed down by ropes and chains.

The party was travelling with three Resistance members led by a man named Pardak. During the sea voyage, Pardak told them about the Resistance… that it was composed of many separate groups of varying size. The largest groups were in the capital city of Ipotal. Word had begun to quietly spread through the Resistance that the lost Talismans had been found and that Dalmoran’s reign would soon come to an end.

The voyage would have normally taken roughly 40 days, but thanks to the Talisman of the Sea providing perfect winds and currents, the party’s ship made it only 10 days.

During the sea voyage, William used the Talisman of the Mind to scry on Dalmoran. Now that they were heading into the kingdom of Anquar, William wanted to know more about the mad king who sat on the throne.

He varied the scrying time each day and did about an hour each day. It used much of the Talisman’s daily allotment of energy, but his Talisman was not otherwise needed. So, each day, he sat in the sunshine on the deck, pulled out his Talisman, closed his eyes and spied on the mad king.

Day 1 - William saw Dalmoran walking in a courtyard garden within castle walls. He was wearing some kind of plate armor. The four Talismans were worked into the chest plate, physically part of the armor. One of the Talismans was “detached” from the armor and Dalmoran held it in his hands. It seemed like he was casting a spell with it or using one of its functions. No obvious visible effect. Guards in the background followed at a respectful distance.

Day 2 – Dalmoran was sparring with another swordsman, practicing his sword fighting skills. Toward the end of the hour, he switched to wrestling with a different trainer. William judged Dalmoran was quite good at both.

Day 3 – Dalmoran was holding court, sitting on his throne. A line of tax collectors, nobles, guild masters and other officials approached with requests, gifts, problems and various mundane issues of state.

Day 4 – Curiously, William got nothing. The scrying was being blocked. He tried several times. Eventually, he got a successful image. Dalmoran was exiting a room with two near naked slave girls. Very lavish surroundings both in the room beyond the door and in the corridor.

Day 5 – Dalmoran was meeting with a trio of generals.  They were giving him a report on the search for the party. Based on the conversation, it sounded like more than half of the Black Guard was searching the continent of Qeshir for them. The generals indicated that several dozen people in Padashan empire who had seen and spoken to the party were being questioned. However, the party had vanished a month ago and the Black Guard army had lost all track of them. Dalmoran exploded in anger at the lack of progress and storming out of the room.

Day 6 – William witnessed some sort of religious ceremony. Several hundred people were in attendance. William realized that the religion was centered on Dalmoran like he was some kind of deity. During the scrying, Dalmoran suddenly got a concerned look on his face and looked up and directly at William as if he could see the scrying sensor. He stretched out a hand toward the sensor, but William ended the spell, severing the connection immediately.

Day 7 – William did not scry this day.

Day 8 – William decided two days was enough. He attempted again. This time Dalmoran was in a huge cobblestone plaza in a city. He was standing with several men at the foot of an enormous copper statue. Workers were putting the last pieces into place. William realized that the statue was of Dalmoran himself. Suddenly Dalmoran whirled around, clutching one of his Talismans and extending his hand, clearly casting a spell. William cut the connection even as he felt something affecting his own scrying spell. But the connection was severed in time, just barely.

After that, William stopped scrying.

The ship arrived in the port of Tenlay on the morning of the tenth day. They decided that it was possible that Dalmoran and his minions might have learned that the party was traveling in a large wagon. In any abundance of caution, they used the Talisman of the Sea to summon a slow, gradual fog to obscure the port. That way they could dock and offload the wagon and all of them without anyone seeing them.

Pardak took the party to the Wounded Wolf, a large inn and tavern which Pardak assured them was friendly to the resistance and was a safe place.

Almahdi also departed. He wanted to get a feel for the underground and talk to people.

Listig took the party’s wagon to wagon builder’s shop. The party is having a few modifications made and a new paint job to make it look more local so it will blend in more.

The party spent a couple of days in Tenlay, getting a feel for the culture and kingdom. During that time, they found a place called the Shield Hall which was the government building that hired, organized and paid all mercenary companies. With Almahdi’s help, they learned that there were three “tiers” of merc contracts. Tier I, II and III. Tier III contracts were awarded to the most skilled, most trusted companies. Generally speaking, Tier III granted the most rights to weapons and armor, the most access to government buildings and the greatest level of autonomy. So, naturally, the party decided to go after a Tier III group.

Humble Almahdi had already identified the perfect group. A small elite Tier III team that called themselves the “Iron Wolves”. There had eight members including a mandalar slave warrior and a human wizard. Almahdi already had their routine down. They spent most of their time at a gambling hall and tavern. But each day, in the late afternoon, they travelled through the warehouse district to the docks to check on their ship that was undergoing repairs.

The party set up an ambush the next day in the warehouse district. Listig, Halimir and William set up on the roofs of buildings flanking the alley. The rest were in the alley, invisible. They surrounded the merc group. Pardak and his two lieutenants followed the merc group at a distance.

Belkor positioned himself so that he had a clear path to the merc wizard as they group passed by. He lashed out with both blades in a blur of steel and the merc wizard dropped dead to the alley ground before he even knew he was under attack. Seeing Belkor become visible during the attack, the rest of the party launched their own attacks. Halimir, Listig and William fired arrows and spells down into the alley from above. Winlock and Grim Rigor charged in to join Belkor in the fray.

One by one, the mercenary group fell. All except for the mandalar slave. He was particularly large and strong and William’s spells failed against him. Grim and the mandalar squared off against each other. Grim lost his footing and went down. The mandalar took advantage of the opportunity, swept Grim’s blade to the side and then, with a wide swing, buried the blade of his glaive into Grim’s chest. Belkor and Winlock charged and battled the mandalar, decorating him with a half dozen wounds. The mandalar turned and fled but was brought down by an arrow.

The party checked Grim and the blade had pierced his heart. Winlock took the Talisman of Blood and began working on bringing Grim back. Meanwhile, the rest of the party searched the bodies of the mercenary group. They had coins, adventuring gear, weapons and armor. But what the party was interested in was their badges and documents – Tier III permits that allowed the mercenary company to carry weapons and armor. The party took all of these. Each party member now has a Tier III badge and permit.

Winlock was eventually able to bring Grim back, using the Talisman’s most powerful function, but it took a lot of energy from the Talisman of Blood. This was the second time that Grim had been brought back by the Talisman and it was getting harder each time. It is likely that the Talisman would not be able to bring him back a third time.

Now that they had the permits, the party would use the Talisman of Blood to assume the facial likeness of the mercenaries they had just killed. In effect, assuming their identity.

The party realized that, in the guise of this mercenary company, they could take their boat. They went to the docks to test out the disguises. It worked. The shipyard crew leader did not doubt that he was talking to the Iron Wolf merc company. He said the boat would be finished tomorrow.

The rest of the day the party purchased supplies for a short journey on boat.

The party returned to the shipyard the following day, with Pardak and his two lieutenants. They paid off the balance of the boat’s repairs and took the boat. It was a much shorter journey and, with the Talisman of the Sea giving them good winds and currents, they made the journey in less than two days.

As their ship approached the capital city of Ipotal, the party could see, even at a distance, that it was truly immense. One of the largest cities they had ever seen.

As their ship entered the harbor, it was stopped by a Black Guard warship. They were boarded and searched. Their badges and permits were checked, but the Black Guard soldiers accepted it all and waved them on.

Pardak took them to a meeting with the local resistance. There, they met a man named Matthias. He was a tall, lean man with a grey beard and a friendly face. Matthias was the leader of the second largest Resistance group in the city. Matthias explained that the city was preparing for a celebration… a city wide festivity that King Dalmoran was having to celebrate himself. It started tomorrow and would span four days and involve parties, speeches, a masquerade ball, a symphony and the christening of a new warship. But the fourth day was the most important. In a city plaza called Hindol Square, the central plaza of the city, all of the highest ranking military officers and nobles would gather with Dalmoran, his advisors and hundreds of spectators. There, they would dedicate a new statue of Dalmoran and Dalmoran would proclaim himself Emperor.

Dalmoran rarely left the safety of his palace, known as the Celestial Tower. But during this celebration, he would be out in public several times. He would always be surrounded by his personal bodyguards, a group of six knights known as the Eternal Guard. Matthias explained that the fourth day would perhaps be the best day for an all out assault. Although Hindol Square would be filled with enemy soldiers, it would also be the only time that Dalmoran would be gathered with all of his generals, officers, advisors, wizards and elite guards. The party agreed that this would be the best time to strike.

Matthias explained that he had been in contact with other group leaders and that they could summon nearly a thousand Resistance members to join in the fight. These people were not soldiers, he warned the party. They would be ill equipped and poorly trained, but they were ready to fight and die to try to bring the Mad King down. The party discussed how best to use these thousand civilians.

During this meeting, the party learned that the largest Resistance group was named the Fury. They were almost 500 strong and had a reputation for fearlessness. They were fanatical in the cause to overthrew Dalmoran. However, their leader, a man named Radik was imprisoned. The Fury members were absolutely loyal to Radik and would not fight without him leading them. Matthias said that if the party could free Radik from prison, the Fury could be persuaded to join the fight.

The party decided it was worth it to take the time to free this man and get another 500 to the cause.

The place where Radik was being held was the Black Guard fortress itself just outside of town which had a maze of caves beneath it.

Halimir used the “commune with land” function of the Talisman of the Land. This allowed him to become “aware” of all things touching the ground within fifty miles. The party hoped to peer into the tower and get an idea of how many guards were in there, where the prisoners were held and so forth. With that information, the party could fly up to the correct level and use the Talisman of the Land to simply walk through the outer wall and into the cells. It should be easy.

However, there was a problem. Halimir could “feel” the city, the hundreds of buildings, the thousands of citizens and so forth. But he could see nothing within the Black Guard tower. It was shrouded in darkness.

Matthias explained that the tower was built upon a former lead refinery and antimony mine. The maze of caves beneath the tower were the former mine shafts and the ground there was laced with lead. Furthermore, the bricks used in the construction of the tower were also infused with lead. Magic could not penetrated the ground or the walls of the tower.

Halimir noticed that the Celestial Tower and several other buildings throughout the city were likewise “shielded” from his Talisman. It seemed that critical chambers in certain buildings used these lead laced bricks.

So, it wasn’t going to be as easy as they thought.

Pardak suggested getting the floorplans of the Black Guard tower. Such plans would be on file at the city planner’s office and the security there would be less formidable. So it was decided… the party would steal the plans from the city planner’s office and use those plans to help them infiltrate the tower and free Radik.

The party obtained rooms in a city inn suggested by Matthias. The party rested that night and stayed out of sight for the following day while the city began its celebrations.

The following evening, while groups of drunken revelers filled the streets, the party went to the city planning office. Infiltrating the office was  fairly straightforward. Listig and Halimir used a combination of invisibility (from William) and stealth to enter the building. They snuck past a few guards and Listig picked several locks to get past a number of doors. They made their way down into the archives and started searching through hundreds of scrolls and sheafs of parchment. After a half hour, they found what they were looking for… the complete floorplans for the Black Guard tower. They made a copy of the plans by hand, not wanting to steal the original lest that alert the authorities. Once the copy was made, they made their way back out.

The party regrouped at their inn and reviewed the floorplans. The plans indicated a tribe of orcs and a group of trolls inhabiting the lower caverns that were used as guards. The floor plans also showed prison cells on the fourth and fifth floors. One area on the fourth floor was a maze of corridors and traps. At the end of that maze was a single cell. They guessed that Radik might be in that cell. But without knowing for sure, they would have to check them all.

Multiple barracks and guard stations and security check points were on every floor. However, they also noticed that there was a large water spring in the caves below and a small vertical shaft running from the caves up to the fourth floor. It was an internal well system of some type. The shaft was narrow, only about three feet in diameter, but enough for a person to get through.

The party made note of the fact that the floorplans had been made more than 70 years ago. It was possible that things had changed during construction or been altered in the last 70 years. But this was the best they could do.

The following day (day 2 of the festival), the party snuck out of the city and went to the Black Guard Tower. It was perched on a rocky hill and overlooked the city. The party positioned themselves where they could stay hidden behind some bushes, but where they had a good view of the tower and two of the cave entrances leading into the rockface beneath the tower.

William cast arcane eye and sent it into one of the caves. This particular cave entrance was chosen because it was closest to the sprint pool and William was not sure how deep his arcane eye could travel into the caves before the lead in the stone blocked it and the spell failed.

William wanted to get an idea of how many orcs and trolls were inside and also find the best route through the caves.

Almost immediately, William saw that things were different than expected. The floor of the caves was blanketed in thick clusters of putrid yellow mold and fungus with yellowish-white toadstools among it. William described what he was seeing to Halimir, but Halimir could think of no natural fungus that grew in such a way. They concluded that it was perhaps something that had been cooked up in a wizard’s lab.

As the arcane eye floated deeper into the cave, William saw an undead warrior – mostly skeletal with bits of flesh clinging to the bones. It wore rusting armor, a shield and a heavy blade was clutched in one bony hand. Further in, there was a second undead, then a third and a fourth. As the eye went deeper, he saw at least a dozen of undead warriors. Most were stationary and unmoving, but some were walking through the tunnels. As they walked through the thick yellow fungus, noxious fumes and spores were kicked up into the air around them.

Further in, the arcane eye spell began to weaken. The image William was seeing became dark and cloudy. He did manage to spot a pool of water and a hole in the cavern ceiling, directly over the water. This was the cistern shaft, exactly where the floorplans indicated. At this point, the arcane eye flickered and winked out of existence, blocked by too much lead and stone.

The party withdrew from the tower and discussed what William had seen. They decided the best approach was invisibility and flight. If they could go in with a small crew, both invisible and flying, they could fly over the undead, never touching the foul yellow fungus on the floor. They could also fly directly up the vertical shaft and get to the fourth floor. With luck, they would be able to elude the guards, find Radik’s cell and free him.
Since both invisibility and flight would require concentration, William would not be able to cast and maintain both for the whole party. It would be better to have some help. The party returned to the inn and asked Pardak to contact the resistance again. An hour later, the party was across a table from Matthias. They asked him for any invisibility and flight magic that his group might have. Matthias agreed to talk to his people and see what they had.

During this meeting, Matthias convinced the party that they should not simply take Radik out of his cell. If his absence were discovered, it would alert the Black Guard and King Dalmoran. Who knows what precautions the Mad King might take if the leader of the most notorious resistance group were suddenly sprung from prison on the eve of his great crowning. No. Better to replace him. Matthias said that he had many volunteers in his group who would take Radik’s place. And one of them bore a passing similarity to Radik. The party agreed, but said they could do even better. With the power of the Talisman of the Blood, Winlock could make this volunteer look exactly like Radik, for about a day.

They agreed to party company and regroup later.
 
That evening, they regrouped again and Matthias unveiled several potions of both invisibility and stealth. Combined with William’s magic, it would be enough. They also had a volunteer – a rotund man with curly black hair and beard. His name was Fazeel. Fazeel would accompany the party into the tower and they would leave him in the cell (with his face magically altered to look like Radik) while the party escaped with the real Radik. If the ruse was discovered, Fazeel would likely be executed on the spot, but he was ready to give his life to buy the party another 24 hours.

A few hours later, near midnight, the party ventured back out to the Black Guard tower. Humble Almahdi and Grim Rigor stayed behind. The party included Belkor, Listig, Halimir, Winlock, William and Fazeel.

Between William’s spells and several potions, they were able to get everyone flying and invisible and had one extra potion of invisibility left over which they would give to Radik in the cell to get him out. In addition, the party members covered their mouths and noses with scarves to help prevent breathing in spores or anything else from the yellow fungus in the caves.

They flew in to the cave, William leading the way, toward the pool of water. They flew over a dozen undead and managed to avoid touching any of the yellow fungus.

They reached the pool and, one by one, flew up the shaft. Listig and Halimir, the most stealthy, went first. They walls were wet and slick with green slime. It would have been impossible to climb. At the top of the shaft was a metal cover. Listig listened and heard someone moving about. When he heard them leave, he carefully moved the cover and flew up into the room. It was a small chamber. A female servant was moving away, down a hallway, carrying something. Listig waited until she was down the hall and well out of sight.

The rest of the party flew up and joined Listig in the small chamber at the top of the shaft. The inner walls seemed to follow the layout of the floorplans they had with them. They followed the floorplans toward prison. They encountered a pair of guards, but flew over their heads and managed to be quiet enough not to alert them. When the party was alone in the last corridor, Halimir tried using the Talisman of the Land to phase through a wall. It worked. Apparently, only the outer walls were lead lined. The inner walls were common stone. So he would be able to walk (fly) through the walls here.

Before they parted ways, Listig gave Fazeel two "plague arrows". These were arrows whose blades were coated in the blue slime from the infected from the city of Qazadeen (from many sessions ago). Listig had kept a pair of infected arrows with him all this time, sealed safely. He told Fazeel to keep them hidden and to use them only as a last resort.

Due to the layout of the walls, there was only one stout stone wall separating the nearest corridor from the prison cell which lay “behind” the maze of traps. Listig phased through that wall and confirmed that Radik was in that cell. He then came back out, grabbed Fazeel and Winlock and phased back through the wall, into the cell. Once they were inside the prison cell, William dropped invisibility on Fazeel and Fazeel woke Radik up. Fazeel quickly explained what was going on and told Radik the whole plan. Once Radik was caught up, Winlock used his Talisman to alter Fazeel’s face. Radik was given the last potion of invisibility, which he consumed. They wished Fazeel good luck. Winlock then picked up Radik and the three of them flew through the wall and back out into the corridor, leaving Fazeel in the cell, and rejoined the group.

The party, still invisible and flying, made their way back through various corridors, past several guards, down the vertical shaft, through the caves, past the undead warriors and back out into the night.

So here’s where we are:

The party has successfully rescued Radik from the Black Guard tower prison and managed to do it without alerting the enemy. Fazeel, in the guise of Radik, is in his cell and will keep up the ruse as long as possible.

It is 2 am on day 3 of the festival. The party has approximately 36 hours before the mass assembly in Hindol Square and the dedication of the statue. In that time, they plan to gather as many resistance groups as possible, including the Fury group, and then launch an attack on the dedication ceremony. This will be the final battle. Their primary goal in that battle is to kill King Dalmoran.


This is where we ended Session 30.



Session 31 is November 17th. Summary to follow a few days after that.

Session 31 may be the last session and the conclusion of the campaign.






« Last Edit: October 18, 2018, 09:34:26 PM by David Roomes »
David M. Roomes
Creator of the World of Khoras