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  1. - Top - End - #181
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    And we are back.

    The companions reunite at the staircase which Aeva and Breanna found. Upon climbing the stairs, the companions come to a large and empty room, with mounds of dead rats and other vermin on the floor. There is a door to their left and what seems to be a boarded up wooden wall. Another door lies on their right. Aeva rests a hand against the boards on the wall and is taken aback when she hears an ear-splitting scream.

    “What was that!?” – Aeva, panicked.

    “What was what?” – Harold, confused.

    “No one else heard that?” – Aeva, to the shaking heads of her companions.

    Attempts to recreate the sound are unsuccessful.

    “Okay, so what are we actually looking for in here?” – Aeva.

    “Well, Reinn is supposed to be in here somewhere, but I am interested in trying to find some records or an archive or something.” – Harold.

    “There is something alive above us. Hopefully that is Reinn.” – Kel’Serrar.

    “So, we split up then, yes?” – Maebh, standing at the left-hand door.

    Breanna, Kel’Serrar and Maebh decide to take the left door while Aeva and Harold take the one on the right.

    Aeva and Harold:
    I ask for Perception Checks again, and an Intelligence Check from Aeva.
    Everyone passes Perception, but Delphi fails Aeva’s Intelligence Check.
    “Can I use a Luck re-roll for that one?” – Delphi.
    “You certainly can.”
    “Will I be getting more information if I do?” – Delphi.
    “Yes, you would.”
    “Okay, yep, passed.” – Delphi, re-rolling.
    “How many Luck points do you have now?” – Dev, curious.
    “Uh, yeah, one.” – Delphi, slightly abashed.
    “Oh no…” – And there it is, proof that I really was concerned on her behalf for what she was about to get into without the Luck point safety blanket.

    I’m really a nice guy. Promise.


    Aeva thinks about the screaming wall a little logically and realises something. The spirits in this place are long since gone, either departed or deceased, insofar as they can be actually considered dead. So whatever it was could not have been a tortured nature spirit or something of the like, but rather an actual echo of something which occurred in the past.

    She shivers, and not from the cold.

    We all hummed the X-Files theme here.

    Harold and Aeva decide to go through the door on the right hand side of the room, and come into a smaller room, empty and bare save for a large, high-backed leather chair and another staircase.

    Cautiously, Aeva moves towards the chair and reaches out a trembling hand. For a moment she can see an old Invarrian man sitting in the chair, a small glass of alcohol in his hand.

    And then he is gone.

    “Harold, did you see that?” – Aeva, concerned.

    “No, what?” – Harold, startled.

    “There was an old man on that chair. He was drinking something.” – Aeva.

    “I didn’t see him. Did he look threatening?” – Harold, quietly.

    “No, he was… Reflecting on something.” – Aeva, still looking around the room.

    “I’ve been seeing, smelling, feeling things too. Earlier in the dining hall I swear I could smell fresh roast meat. And then of course when we came into this building I saw a woman walk through that boarded up door. I’m pretty sure Maebh saw it too.” – Harold, thoughtful.

    “So I’m not going mad. I thought stuff was only happening to me.” – Aeva, rubbing her temples.

    Breanna, Maebh and Kel’Serrar:
    Breanna’s eyes widen in shock as the door swings open before her. The floor of the room beyond is covered in a thick pool of blood. She closes her eyes for a moment, and when she opens them once more she sees the ghostly figure of a slave mopping the blood over the floor. He gives a chilling grin and vanishes.

    “Are you okay Bree?” – Maebh, to the visibly shaken Leathe.

    “Yeah, it was nothing.” – Breanna, shaking herself.

    “No, I saw something too. An Invarrian, hanging from the ceiling, throat slashed open, blood pouring from the wound. Is that what you saw?” – Maebh, to the wide-eyed Leathe.

    “No, I saw a man mopping blood over the floor. With that said, they’re probably connected.” – Breanna, walking over to the wall before her.

    “Now, if my theory is correct, that screaming from earlier should have come from, just about… here.” – Breanna, pressing a furry palm against the wooden wall.

    Nothing happens.

    The Leathe shrugs and makes to turn away, but Maebh groans in frustration and she blows a hole through the wall with her flames.

    Aeva and Harold:
    The Selkye and the Invarrian walk down a long hallway, with three doors set into the left wall. They open the first one and reveal an empty room. They do not bother exploring it and open the second door which reveals a long room filled with a maze of bookshelves.

    The two companions search through the records and realise quite swiftly that the newer ones are closest to the door and the filing system seems to be just to push the older documents to the back of the room.

    “Can we find any on your friend?” – Aeva, quietly.

    “He’s not really my friend. I didn’t know him well. In fact, I always thought he was a bit of a pretentious prat.” – Harold, before picking up a random file and starting to read.

    Aeva shrugs and follows suit.

    “Ah, I have it. Oh, look at this. Apparently he didn’t stop ranting about some ‘Grey Devourer’ since he got here. He believes that its kind ate his crew and the End Times are nigh.” – Aeva.

    “Check this out. Apparently servants and staff here and other inmates started ranting about the same stuff after coming into contact with him too. This servant, ah, yeah there it is, Ranulf, drowned himself hours after cleaning Reinn’s room.” – Harold, darkly.

    This does not bode well.

    “The last date I can find here is from about two months ago.” – Harold.

    “Yes, that’s more or less what I have here. Here, it looks like whoever was writing in Reinn’s file at the end here ended up the same way.” – Aeva, handing the parchment over to the Invarrian. A single note is scrawled at the bottom of the page in a spidery hand.

    They are coming.

    Breanna, Maebh and Kel’Serrar:
    Maebh’s flames have revealed a very, very small room. A stone wall is before them, but it is the gaps between the stones which causes the companions’ consternation, for the wall has been constructed using the remains of the dead as mortar. Skulls and other bones jut out from the wall in a macabre fashion, and on the floor lie yet more corpses. Amidst them is a small, golden amulet. Both Maebh and Kel’Serrar can clearly see that it is possessed of some very dark magic and that touching it would probably be a very bad idea.

    Breanna for her part goes very still and seems to be staring at the wall, locked in a trance of sorts. Suddenly, with a huge gasp of air, she falls to the ground, shaking. The Danann look at her, but she shakes her head as she stands.

    “It was nothing. Don’t mind me.” – Breanna, breathing heavily.

    Aeva and Harold:
    Aeva prepares a spell to contact the others before trying to find old references to the Grey Devourer in the records.

    ”Come to us, we have found the archive.” – Aeva’s Whispering Wind.

    Breanna runs to them, trying to ignoring the prickling on the back of her neck like she is being watched…

    Kel’Serrar and Maebh:
    Kel’Serrar looks on as Maebh swiftly undoes the curse on the amulet, rendering it safe to hold.

    “I believe it was some kind of mind-altering spell.” – Maebh, to the ranger who nods.

    “A cruel trick to play in an asylum.” – Kel’Serrar, sagely.

    Kel’Serrar carefully picks up the amulet and inspects it. On one side it bears an image of the waves with a large and powerful looking Invarrian emerging from them. On the other, a grinning Invarrian is depicted, flipping a coin. He resolves to ask Harold about it and the two make their way to the archive to join the others. When they arrive, Maebh, Aeva and Breanna start poring through the records, with the Leathe and the Danann looking at everything recent and Aeva looking through the older records, albeit those not written in Old Invarrian.

    Kel’Serrar meanwhile takes Harold aside and shows him the amulet.

    “Aye, they’re religious symbols, showing our dedication to the God of the Waves and the Golden God. We, like our gods are the same coin, but with two faces. We bless in the name of the Golden God, who represents all that is good and fun about our nature, while the God of the Waves represents our darker and more dangerous parts and so it is by him that we curse.” – Harold, going into theologian mode.

    “So how would it have come here?” – Kel’Serrar.

    “Well they are quite common amongst the nobility. Hell, even peasants might have them if they had any wealth at all. When you consider the history of this place, there should probably be dozens around here. Well here, look, I have one too.” – Harold, pulling out his own, practically identical amulet and showing it to Kel’Serrar.

    “Okay, the earliest reports of the Grey Devourer I can find and actually understand were approximately five centuries ago, but details are extremely scarce.” – Aeva, sharing her findings.

    “In the last couple of decades though, there have been several people who have claimed to see shark-men in the waters. A few have even said they have some kind of mind-controlling powers.” – Breanna, who has had more luck with details.

    Harold finds an old book of mythology and flips it open. It is hardly a record of anything, and he has no idea of what it is doing in this archive, but he finds that it details stories of the first Stormlord. Apparently he fought a great beast called the Devourer and defeated it with the Gilded Sword.

    “Looks like someone was on the same track we are.” – Harold, laying the book out and showing it to the companions.

    * * *

    After going through everything they could find in the archive, the companions move on. The next room they discover is almost like a maze, portraits hanging from every wall. Aeva gasps as she realises that she recognises one of the faded paintings as the Invarrian man she saw earlier, sitting in his chair. The plaque under the portrait reads Lord Steelshield.

    “Ah, Steelshield. He was the first lord of this keep, well before it became an asylum.” – Harold, reminiscent.

    Harold recognises other names, but he does not recall any details.

    The last picture on the wall looks like a real bastard of a person, but there are no plaques revealing identities after the first row, which means that the plaques were abandoned upon the death of the Steelshield family line.

    The subject of the last portrait bears a ring, showing the sigil of the Stillhet asylum, which leads the companions to deduce that this was one of the people in charge of the asylum.

    A stairway lies ahead, a closed door at the top. They open it and reveal one more room. In the centre of the room lies a chair, within which sits a black-furred Invarrian. He is wasted away, chained to the chair and wearing a thick leather muzzle. He looks up at them and groans weakly.

    And we left it there…

    The Wrap-Up:
    Sorry this took so long to post, but I have been seriously busy lately. We have another session this weekend, plus I am also one session behind anyway.

    Suffice to say this campaign is not dead by any stretch, and in fact things are just starting to rise to a crescendo.

    Cheers,
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  2. - Top - End - #182
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Session 5.2: Of Haunted Mansions and Poor Decisions

    You can feel the hatred in the very walls. This place is altogether evil. The air we breathe is a poisonous fume, which drives us all to madness and death. I would not wish to be here, not if it were the last safe place in the world. Do you hear me? You savages! Do you hear me? Let me out!

    I SAID LET ME OUT!”

    - The last words of Ogruf Safeport, warden of Stillhet in the year 211 CE. Safeport then hanged himself in front of the archivists he had held hostage in the asylum’s archive for the past three hours.

    Welcome to Session 5.2: The Siege of Stillhet.

    We begin where we left off, in the top room of the asylum of Stillhet, or Serenity.


    Harold barely recognises the sorry figure bound before the companions as Reinn, the brother of the late Stormlord.

    “Oh Reinn, what happened to you?” – Harold, sorrowful.

    There is a large window behind Reinn’s chair which looks out over the bay, and Breanna finds herself drawn to it. There, below, pulling into the docks beside the Tide Tremor, is an Invarrian longship. She recognises it immediately.
    “Oh ship.” – Delphi.

    “We have company.” – Breanna, over her shoulder to her companions, who then join her at the window.

    “Silver wolf-skull on sabres. Windchaser.” – Harold, growling under his breath. He walks over to Reinn and cuts the muzzle from him.

    “So, Reinn, how goes the Game?” – Harold, friendly.

    Reinn looks at Harold with a horrified expression.

    “Quick, you must leave now! Leave! Get out! Run, run now!” – Reinn, practically screaming in Harold’s face.

    “Unfortunately, Reinn you’re the heir presumptive. We need to get you out of here.” – Harold.

    “No, you cannot. I must not leave, they told me!” – Reinn.

    “You will die if you stay!” – Harold.

    “I cannot die. Do you know how long I have sat in this chair, with nothing to eat, nothing to drink? I have been here an eternity, and yet I have not died. When they took me, they changed me… I cannot be killed.” – Reinn, to the silence of the companions.

    Breanna, still at the window, sees Invarrians disembarking from the longship below.

    “Okay, we’ve got some trouble now. Let’s hurry.” – Breanna, trying to get them to get a move on.

    “Do you at least want to be unbound?” – Harold, to Reinn.

    “No, I cannot be trusted. Leave me and run! They can make me do their bidding at any time, with no warning. I can do nothing about it, and they force me to do things, horrible things! If I am free, I might turn on you, and you cannot kill me. They told me I am the Grey Devourer’s herald, and that I cannot die until my purpose is complete. Once they have hold of me, nothing you do can stop me. Now go! Now!” – Reinn, frantic.

    “GO ASHORE! TAKE ANYTHING VALUABLE! LEAVE NONE ALIVE!” – The magically amplified voice of Ovar Windchaser, directing his reavers.

    “I hate that bastard. I can’t be killed, but that doesn’t mean I can’t be hurt. I don’t particularly want to be stuck in a chair with that sadistic bastard stabbing me incessantly. Do it, release me and I will try to aid you.” – Reinn, who recognises Windchaser’s voice from years at court.

    “Will shortswords do?” – Harold, to Reinn as he cuts the ties. The newly freed Invarrian nods and accepts the blades.

    “Good, now don’t stab us in the back.” – Kel’Serrar, quietly.

    * * *

    The companions devise a plan to defend the fortress with Aeva’s and Maebh’s spellcasting. Maebh will put up a blade-wall on either side of the gatehouse, with Aeva snaring as many as she can as they run through the gates. Maebh will then move the blade-walls towards each other, basically mincing the reavers stuck in between them.

    “Someone is about to have a **** day.” – Sins.

    Spoiler: Map of the Battlefield
    Show
    INSERT MAP HERE


    With a growl, Maebh causes two walls of golden aethyric blades to spring into existence on either side of the gate. Beside her, Aeva takes the shape of a hawk and flies to the roof of the main structure before planting a magic snare on the gateway itself.

    A stream of Windchaser's reavers come through the gate, a half dozen of them caught in a flare of ice-blue magic as they try to enter the complex. They seem remarkably well-drilled, and they do not panic at the sight of the spinning amber blades. Instead, they do their best to get past them.With some effort, Maebh begins to push the blades towards the reavers, slashing into and through the tightly-packed Invarrians.

    Maebh’s initial assault decimates the first wave of reavers. Of sixteen Invarrians, none have managed to get through the ephemeral blades without injury. Six of them were mulched instantly, and another four slump to the ground with serious injuries. More of the sea-wolves get through the gate behind them.

    She feels a strain on her consciousness and redoubles her resolve, shrugging off the attempt to control the blades.

    To Kel’Serrar’s magically assisted vision, it is clear that tendrils of some power are coming from an individual near the Invarrian ship.

    “Something is trying to take control of the blades.” – Maebh, to the other companions.

    “I know, I can see it.” – Kel’Serrar.

    “Can you shoot it?” – Harold.

    “No, I can see where the power is coming from, but not the target itself. I just know it is near the ships.” – Kel’Serrar, frustrated.

    “Set fire to the ship then?” – Breanna, trying to be helpful.

    “If I do that, the fire could easily spread to the dock.” – Kel’Serrar.

    “And then to our ship. Yeah, not good.” – Harold, making a very good point.

    A few reavers coming ashore have bows, so Kel’Serrar and Breanna put a couple down with extreme prejudice.

    Aeva throws another snare just in front of the door to enter the main part of the asylum, which entraps another eight reavers, most of them still bearing severe wounds from Maebh’s bladewall.
    “You know, this name is a bit misleading. How are they getting through?” – Ladyhawk.
    “It’s a collection of ethereal blades, loosely held together with magic, spinning randomly. It is possible to get through, just very dangerous.”
    “See, if it were really a wall though, they wouldn’t be able to get through.” – Ladyhawk.
    “Right, yeah fair point I guess.”
    “So it is more of a blade-curtain then, right?” – Ladyhawk.
    “I don’t mind that actually, we might rename it.”
    “The hanging drapes of blades?” – Sins.


    Nine reavers manage to evade the blades and Aeva’s snares and get through the door and into cover. Half a dozen arrows answer Kel’Serrar and Breanna’s shots. One arrow grazes the Danann’s cheek and another thuds into his shoulder. The Leathe also takes a shot which manages to just punch through her chest-armour.

    Maebh, standing at the window, directs the movement of both blade-curtains. One presses towards the gate, the other to the doorway into the asylum. The sheer power involved in maintaining and shifting the blades is immense, but it leaves her slightly vulnerable to the reaver mage’s attempts to steal control. A gigantic mental force buffets her mind causing her to reel away in shock and anger. She beats him off, and still her blades keep spinning, but she knows that she might not be able to retain her hold for much longer.

    “We need to get rid of that mage.” – Maebh, to her companions.

    “Don’t worry, Bree and I are on it.” – Aeva, calling down from the roof above.

    “Harold, if they set fire to this structure, we will all burn as they laugh. We need to spread out and engage them. They won’t burn their own.” – Reinn, quietly.

    “Skirmish with them?” – Harold.

    “Aye, out in the halls and on the stairways. We can hold them off throughout this accursed building.” – Reinn, determined.

    The two Invarrians head out to protect the stairs up to the room.

    Kel’Serrar takes another archer out with an arrow and Breanna leaps out of the window. Aeva, in the shape of a giant hawk, swoops down and snatches up the falling Leathe in mid-air. The companions share a grin at the consternation of the reavers as they notice the sight of a truly gigantic hawk bearing a large possum replete with daggers, knives and a wicked smile.
    “I’m not too heavy am I?” – LD.
    “See LD, it’s not a matter of how heavy you are, but where she grips you. I assume by the husk.”
    I have been waiting for the opportunity to make that Monty Python reference for years.


    Aeva/Hawk and Breanna finally get a look at the reaver-mage, a hunched and greying Invarrian, who looks up at them and snarls.

    “Bring them down!” – Invarrian mage.

    Four spears and seven arrows fly up at the two companions, but Aeva is able to evade the missiles without too many problems. One arrow flies through the feathers on one wing, another hits Breanna but doesn’t penetrate her armour. Only one spear gets close to the two companions, but Breanna is able to parry it away with a knife.

    To Aeva’s sight, the mage has a multitude of spirits roiling around him and she knows that he is preparing a powerful piece of magic. So she drops Breanna from her talons as she flies past and then lands on the prow of the Windchaser longship before changing her shape into that of a dagger-lion.

    “Okay LD, Agility Check to stick the landing.”
    “Can we just make a rule that she doesn’t need to roll to pass these anymore?” – Dev.
    “I got a 6.” – LD, to the laughter of the rest of the group.
    “****ing dice Jesus.”
    “I think it saves time to just rule that she doesn’t need to roll.” – Dev.
    “In fact, let’s just not have her touch the dice at all to spare our feelings.” – Sins.
    “Okay LD, you’re surrounded by four reavers and a preoccupied druid, but you’re being backed up by basically a smilodon. What will you do?”
    “I’ll shank someone in the kneecap.” – LD.
    “Isn’t it flank someone in the kneecap?” – Dev, questioning.
    “No, shank in the kneecap equals flanking. It’s a note I actually have on my sheet.” – LD.

    As an aside, Sins owns a sentient dice which actually seems to loathe Dev. It constantly rolls high when he says he wishes to roll to hit, but never higher than a 3 when he states he is rolling to wound.
    “We need to microwave that mother****er.” – Delphi.

    One last note, I have referred to the Invarrian magic user as a mage, because that is what the companions guessed he was, but he was in fact a Druid if I remember correctly.


    Breanna’s attempts to strike at the reavers around her are thwarted by their blades and shields, and without the advantage of surprise, the Leathe finds herself overmatched.

    Aeva/Lion meanwhile has more luck, pouncing on an Invarrian and ending his life with her fangs.

    Maebh, Kel’Serrar and Harold:
    The companions can clearly hear screams from the building the Windchaser reavers just entered.

    “What the hell is happening out there?” – Harold, from the stairs where he waits with Reinn. They have exchanged their other weapons for two spears Harold picked up on his travels and which he carries with him for just such occasions.

    “You know how you have all been dealing with hallucinations and ****? Well to get to us now, they have to go through all that too.” – Kel’Serrar, calling back to the Invarrian.

    Nine reavers managed to enter the building. Five stagger out, terrified and hoarse, clutching at their weapons. One is missing his arm, torn off at the shoulder, the flesh blackened and dying where the limb had been removed. He staggers out into the light and stops for a split second, relief evident on his features. To the horror of the watching Maebh and Kel’Serrar however, the reaver’s ordeal is not yet over as a taloned ghostly hand reaches out from the yawning darkness of the doorway behind him, grasps him by the shoulder and swiftly draws him back into the shadows.

    I ask for a Perception Check from Dev. He passes.
    “Okay, keep in mind that you passed this time.”


    From the dark stairway below, Harold and Reinn can hear the echoes of a violent past. Screaming, shrieking, moaning, the rattling of chains and snarls of insane savagery waft up from below as if on a foul wind. Footsteps can be heard coming towards them, ever louder.

    Cue Nazgul screeching. Because, of course.

    Harold looks over at Reinn swiftly and the heir looks absolutely terrified, fists clenched around his borrowed swords. They can hear doors opening at the front of the building and they prepare themselves to fight off both the shades of Stillhet and the approaching reavers.

    Breanna and Aeva:
    Back on the longship, two reavers press in on the cornered Leathe, but she moves like lightning and is able to avoid most of their strikes, two heavy hits connect which batters her a bit, but she is able to get free of them. The others on-board move in on Aeva/Lion, swords, axes and boarding pikes ready. The beast that is Aeva takes a few flesh wounds, but nothing too serious.

    “Take the lion alive!” – The reaver-mage, who is staying well away from the blades and fangs.

    “Oh no, that doesn’t sound good.” – Ladyhawk.
    “I don’t like this at all.” – Delphi.


    Aeva finally realises that the reaver-mage must actually be a druid as at first, he entreats the spirits around him to form a terrible storm overhead. Then he becomes irate as it is taking too long, and he begins forcing them to do his will. Aeva is disoriented as all around the spirits of nature scream in agony.

    “This is really not good.” – Delphi.

    Maebh, Harold and Kel’Serrar:
    Dodging arrows from the handful of reavers below, Maebh leaves the window and moves to aid Harold and Reinn on the stairs. With a quick incantation, she shields herself in lightning and takes up her spear in between the two Invarrians.

    For his part, Kel’Serrar alternates between loosing accurate and deadly shots at the reavers below and taking cover under the windowsill. Locked in an archery duel, the Danann’s preternatural senses and abilities hold him in good stead. He has the high ground and stationary, heavy cover. Though outnumbered substantially, his foes never really stand a chance.

    On the stairway, Harold manages to put his spear into the throat of what he initially believes to be the first of the reavers to appear below them. The Invarrian vanishes into a pool of black blood which splashes over the stairs and walls before the companions’ very eyes. They have only a few seconds to marvel at this before a tide of Invarrian revenants stream up the stairs, eyes gleaming with a fell light in the shadows, jaws stretched impossibly wide. Only three spears hold the stairway, but any that get too close to Maebh are struck by the swirling tempest of magic which surrounds her.

    Aeva and Breanna:
    The Leathe manages to disengage from her opponents, sprints past her companion, vaults over the longship’s railings and legs it for the comparative safety of the asylum.

    Aeva, affronted and physically hurt by the torment of the spirits which is happening around her decides to put everything into a flat-out assault on the reaver-druid. She wears the attacks of Windchaser’s boarding-pike armed personal guard, taking a long and horrific gash down her side and flank, and pounces on the surprised and distracted druid on the pier, ripping at him with claws and fangs.

    The torment of spirits ceases, but now Aeva is in a completely untenable position. Cut-off, wounded, surrounded and with no support.

    At this point I gave the players an option. Their companion was in deep trouble, and also, crucially, out of Luck. So to help her escape, I bartered with them. A single Luck Point each to give her a chance to get free.

    Despite most of them being down on Luck, they all accepted without hesitation. I have such a good group. :P


    Aeva leaves the reaver-druid on the wooden pier, bleeding and battered and leaps into the ocean, upon which she turns into her whale-form and swims slowly for the beach, lifeblood trickling into the salt-water.

    Breanna sees that Maebh’s bladewall is still active in the gateway, the amber blades still spinning due to the Danann mage’s indomitable will. She stops, turns, and readies herself for the handful of reavers pursuing her from the ships.

    But the strikes do not come.

    Windchaser has told his men to halt, and strides up to the diminutive Leathe.

    “Tell Oakenshield that I will meet him out here for single combat.” – Windchaser, allowing Breanna to leave.

    Breanna gulps, nods and scurries over the wall back to her companions.

    “Ladyhawk, we’re not going to do a proper combat, you’re just going to fry them.” – Dev, laughing.
    “I don’t think I can just fry them Dev, I don’t think I have enough points for that. Cause someone changed the system.” – Ladyhawk, pointedly looking at myself. Ladyhawk is still upset about the addition of Soulfire.
    “Yeah Sins!” – I exclaim defiantly.


    * * *
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2016-10-13 at 11:04 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  3. - Top - End - #183
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    And we are back.

    Maebh, Harold and Reinn:
    The tide of spirits hurling themselves up the stairway at the companions halts. Reinn starts to run downstairs.

    “Reinn! Stop!” – Harold, but the mad heir does not stop. Harold follows him.

    “Harold, what are you doing?” – Maebh, who takes up her spear and follows the two Invarrians.

    Aeva:
    Having made her way to the beach, the critically wounded Aeva changes her form once more into a seilbak and shuffles along, trying to find cover. Thankfully, if any of the reavers see her, they ignore her.

    Delphi chose the seilbak because it has the highest health of any of her available creatures, along with the hakal, but she was concerned about staying in or near the water due to the possibility the reaver-druid might still be alive and capable of calling up some nasties from the deep.

    Finally, Aeva/Seilbak finds a rocky outcrop to hide behind and changes back into her regular form, grimacing in pain. She finds some bandages, and with shaking hands, manages to bind the worst of the wounds. She sits with her back against the rock for moment, trying to get her breath back.

    Kel’Serrar:
    Now abandoned up in the asylum’s main building, Kel’Serrar picks off the last of the reaver archers outside. His keen ears can hear the screams of the reavers which have entered Stillhet’s buildings. The Danann smiles, which if anyone had seen it, would have confirmed everyone’s suspicions that Kel’Serrar is a raging sociopath.

    Seeing no targets from his window, Kel’Serrar sits down on the floor, trusting that his companions will be able to prevent any enemies from gaining access to the room while he is vulnerable, and enters a trance.

    Sins activates Woodland Senses and enters the trance, but is not able to detect anything yet. He does however, remain in the trance so he can try again next round.

    Breanna:
    For the Leathe, she has two options. The first option, to climb and leap over the high internal wall is possible, but difficult. The second, to follow the reavers inside the buildings where they are screaming in terror, is easier, but by the sounds of it, might be more dangerous.

    She sticks with what she knows, and climbs the wall with no real trouble and darts around to the front of the main structure, where a few reavers are entering. Most of them are haggard and gaunt, and not a few are missing body parts. The Leathe flickers into shadow and then flits into the midst of the reavers, her knives flashing, and she puts two of the wounded Invarrians down. She then darts from reaver to reaver, slashing throats and shanking knees, all the while doing her best to get back to the room she left her companions in earlier.

    Harold:
    Now alone in a hallway, Harold notices puddles of what appears to be dark blood on the ground. He has lost Reinn and Maebh in the labyrinthine halls.
    I ask for a Willpower Check here from Dev. He passes, but not by much.
    A phantasmal clawed hand reaches out from the wall and claws at the Invarrian, tearing into his very soul. Luckily, the Invarrian’s will is strong enough that the phantom is not able to gain much purchase on him, but it is enough to hurt.

    Maebh:
    The mage has now lost Harold in the darkness of Stillhet, the hallways illuminated only by the constantly crackling shield of lightning around her.

    With no warning at all, an Invarrian reaver strides out of the shadows and plunges a blade into the Danann’s midriff before exploding into mist. The strike hurt her considerably, but when she looks at where she was assaulted, there is no wound, just a small mark, like a bruise.

    Ladyhawk couldn’t believe that she still took damage despite passing the Willpower Check I asked of her. She was also taken aback by the fact that she saw this obvious ghostly apparition despite her True-Sight spell being active.

    At this stage, the companions realised that earlier the hauntings were merely residual energy which they were reacting with, but the things they were seeing were not real as such. Now, however, the blood and activity has riled the ghosts of Stillhet and now they have become something real and tangible.

    From a pseudo-scientific perspective, due to the horrible events which took place here, Stillhet has an unusual concentration of electro-magnetic energy, which caused the characters to hallucinate earlier, which is why they only saw things when they failed Perception Checks and Maebh and Kel’Serrar with their True-Sight abilities were largely immune to it.


    Having lost Harold and Reinn, the Danann turns and makes her way back to the room they found Reinn in, where she hopes Kel’Serrar is still safe.

    Harold:
    “Okay, so I’m thinking, is it possible to try and influence these spirits?” – Dev.
    “What, like charm them?”
    “Yeah, kind of. At least get them to stop attacking us?” – Dev.
    “Like me or else, right?” – Sins.
    “Not sure what the, ‘or else’ is though…” – LD.
    “So basically, Charm Check. Punch the wall?” – To a smattering of laughter.
    “Yeah, okay Charm Check.” – Dev.
    “What are you doing sorry?” – Ladyhawk, who wasn’t listening.
    “I’m going to try and address the spirits.” – Dev.
    “Ah right, go on then.” – Ladyhawk, who then turns very attentively to Dev as if waiting for a grand speech.
    “Oh **** off.” – Dev, laughing.
    “Nah mate, you can’t say that to them, that’ll just offend them.” – Ladyhawk.
    “I like it.” – LD.


    “Denizens of this house, hear me! I am Harold Oakenshield, First Reaver of Varr!” – Harold, trying his damnedest. He can feel centuries of rage and hatred around him, but to his relief, he is not attacked. He figures it might well be worth trying to continue this conversation.

    Maebh and Kel’Serrar:
    At the very edges of his perception, Kel’Serrar can hear and feel Maebh shaking him and calling his name. He opens his eyes and slowly stands up, nodding a greeting to the mage.

    And there goes about half an hour talking about Tobuscus.

    “Kel, there’s some pretty freaky **** going on down there and I think we are safest if we try to stick together.” – Maebh.

    “Cause she’s scared.” – Dev.
    “I’m not scared Harold!” – Ladyhawk.
    “You’re a chair.” – Setting LD up for an ASDF Movie joke.
    “I CAN DREAM HAROLD!” – LD, who caught my reference expertly.


    The two Danann go downstairs together, hoping they’ll find their companions still in one piece each. The ranger casts a silvery glow around him as they run, hoping that it might deter some of the asylum’s supernatural entities.

    Harold:
    “Okay, Harold, what are you doing?”
    “Still trying to talk to the ghosts.” – Dev.
    “Still talking to the walls then, got it.”


    Convinced that he is capable of getting through to the hauntings, Harold keeps trying.

    “Residents of Stillhet, rest in peace. You have passed from this world… There is nothing here for you. The Golden God has now blessed you with peace, so please, leave. Be at peace, your game is over.” – Harold, doing his best to call upon the Invarrian traditions and psyche.

    “Okay Dev, roll your Charm Check.” – We were all quite impressed by his little speech. It was perfectly in-character with an impassioned delivery, which only made the following even funnier.
    “Ah ****.” – A despondent Dev, as he rolled a 99.
    After the gales of laughter have subsided, Dev re-rolls with a Luck Point and ends up with a far-more reasonable total of 36.


    Harold’s impassioned plea has a calming influence on the house, and the oppressive feeling lessens slightly, but other than that, there is not much effect. One positive however, Harold is not attacked.

    Maebh and Kel’Serrar:
    The two Danann come across Harold and silently watch the Invarrian give his speech to the invisible ghasts of the asylum.
    “Leave him, he’s done!” – LD, laughing.

    “We need to stop killing in the buildings.” – Harold, turning to face Maebh and Kel’Serrar.

    “Ah, no. They attack us, they need to die. Spirits of the house, please excuse us for a few moments.” – Maebh, feeling a lot more confident now that the three of them are together. Her words are met with an intensification of the oppression they felt lessen moments earlier.

    “Great, they’ll never listen to me now. Let’s go find Reinn, and don’t kill him.” – Harold, and the three companions leave together.

    Breanna:
    Now inside with the reavers in the main hall of Stillhet, Breanna is the reason for the main concentration of violence within the asylum presently. A great spectral wolf bounds through a wall and pounces on her, biting down on her upper arms with great savagery. With a cry, she slams a knife into its head and it evaporates, but the damage is done, a grey bite-wound left on her bicep.

    Grimacing with pain and holding her arm, Breanna retreats into her Shadowskin and makes her way upstairs, ignoring the last of the reavers, which are swallowed up behind her.

    A grey wisp of mist approaches her and takes a hold of her arms with an iron grip. Slowly and inexorably, it forces her against a wall and starts to try and tear the Leathe apart.

    This was getting quite dangerous for the party. Harold and Maebh had both taken damage, Aeva had dropped to 5 health before her first aid efforts and now Breanna was trapped and sitting at 4 with a Willpower Check to determine whether she took D10 or D5 damage next turn.

    Aeva:
    Recovered slightly from her ordeal, Aeva takes the form of a hawk and flies over to the gate, outside which Ovar Windchaser and his personal guards, the badly injured druid and what is left of the reavers have congregated. She tries to land a single-target snare on the druid, but with a snarl he smashes the butt of his staff against the ground and her hasty weaving is dispelled.

    Maebh, Harold and Kel’Serrar:
    The companions come to the main hall and see a horrific sight. Against the wall, Reinn is pinned by a spectral grey mist, writhing in agony as it tries to tear him apart. Already it has torn an arm away from his body, but despite this the Invarrian does not appear to be close to death, merely in horrific pain.

    Against the opposite wall, the keen and magically-aided eyes of the Danann see Breanna, caught in an identical embrace, straining with all her might to keep her limbs attached. Maebh’s eyes flash with amber light and a wave of golden fire sweeps the room, burning away the phantasms and the mists binding Breanna and Reinn.

    A wide range dispel using Remove Curse from Maebh.

    Harold picks up the mangled Reinn and carries him out of the main hall of Stillhet, followed by the others, Maebh helping Breanna stagger out herself. Behind them, the building groans and the screams of the long dead can be heard, still railing against their fates.

    Aeva:
    The hawk above the reavers tries to snare the reaver-druid again, but with another irritated snarl, he is able to ignore it. He looks up and his eyes gleam with a feral light as he notices the shape of Aeva/Hawk above.

    “I only have enough Soulfire for one more cast guys.” – Delphi. While she has been unsuccessful in actually snaring him, Aeva has been able to prevent the druid from doing anything other than resisting her spells, which has given the companions time to deal with the situation inside, without dealing with the negative effects of the druid’s magic.

    Aeva gives it one more go, desperately trying to ensnare the druid, and this time she finally succeeds. Ice-blue tendrils of magic wrap themselves around his legs and he curses to himself as he finds himself pinned. Aeva/Hawk throws herself into a swooping attack, but has to pull-out before she can take out the druid’s eyes as she notices the pike-armed guards nearby and she knows that in her current shape she would struggle to avoid them. Instead, she flies to the gatehouse, lands and turns back to her regular form.

    She takes out a dagger and hurls it with all her strength at the druid. The silvery blade flashes into his eye and he drops to the rocky ground.

    “Spears! Take her down!” – Ovar Windchaser, roaring in anger and hatred.

    Two spears are hurled at Aeva, but she is able to evade them and drop down from the gatehouse, taking cover behind the wall.

    There is some discussion here about how Reinn is feeling.
    “Considering he’s just had an arm ripped off, he’s actually surprisingly comfortable. His main concern, where most people would be worried about bleeding to death from their arm-hole, he’s most concerned with living eternity without an arm.”
    “Well he does have an arm.” – Sins.
    “Yeah, that was his spare. Who wants to be down to their spare?”
    “He can console himself with the thought that he doesn’t really need both to be king.” – Dev.
    “He’s actually not so keen on that either. He doesn’t believe that a king should come with the possibility of turning into a rage monster and trying to eat all his courtiers.”
    “Ah, yes. This is true.” – Dev, pensive.
    “We haven’t really thought this through at all, have we?” – Ladyhawk.


    Breanna scrambles up the inner wall and lets a rope down behind her so that the others can follow her up, none of the companions wishing to risk going through the buildings of the asylum. When Harold, still carrying Reinn, reaches the top of the wall, Windchaser calls out to him.

    “Oakenshield, you finally show your cowardly face!” – Windchaser, loud enough to wake the dead.

    “Get wrecked Windchaser!” – Harold’s response, before he wearily makes his way down from the wall to the gatehouse, where Aeva waits patiently.
    As funny as this was, it actually fits as an Invarrian threat/insult.
    There are half a dozen reavers around Windchaser now, the only survivors of the ill-fated siege. That said, it doesn’t look like Windchaser really cares overmuch.

    “Okay, so I want to use what’s left of my Soulfire to call up a serious storm. I don’t want this combat to get close to one of those other reavers and have him just finish Harold off with a sneaky stab from behind. If they’re distracted by being struck by lightning, they’re not going to be able to do that.” – Ladyhawk, to torrents of laughter.
    “If they’re distracted by, you know, death.” – LD.
    “It might shake up Windchaser too.” – Ladyhawk, deadpan.
    “Yeah, it might have a slight effect, seeing his crew disintegrated around him.” – Sins.


    “Windchaser, I am more than happy to duel you, but do you mind if we move this engagement to another spot, say a mile down the coastline? Blood spilt here is, well, this place doesn’t react well with blood.” – Harold, trying his best to prevent anymore horrible spirit events.

    “I don’t really care Oakenshield. I don’t intend to tarry here any longer than it takes for me to remove your head from your shoulders.” – Ovar, pacing with shield and axe in hand.

    "Before we commence then, what happened in Isenhjem after we left?" - Harold, trying to buy just a little time to get his breath back.

    Surprisingly, Windchaser takes the bait.

    "I followed your pathetic ship out of Isenhjem harbour, so I was not present for what occurred next. I received word that just hours after we departed, the entire small council was found dead, drowned in the council room. Aeluf Av-Bitterskjold was made castellan, as the only lord left of any real rank. Thanks to your speedy and inconspicuous departure, you've been declared a heretic and traitor to the throne, to be killed on sight if you approach Isenhjem. Your brother, who hid so desperately behind Bjarn's shield and happily took a seat on the small council, died with his head in a bucket of brine." - Ovar Windchaser, grinning murderously.

    Harold stands still and ready, eyes searching desperately for any hint, any sign that the gigantic reaver might be lying, but to no avail.

    “So be it.” – Harold, striding forward from under the gate, saber and axe at the ready.

    Overhead, the skies grow ominously dark, the clouds almost black, promising destruction and death…

    * * *

    Blades clash together under the darkening sky as Ovar Windchaser finally gets his chance to bring down his rival. Within minutes, both combatants are breathing heavily and they disengage for a moment. Both are bleeding from a few minor injuries, but neither are close to being incapacitated.

    One reaver from the ring of observers around the combatants draws a dagger and makes to strike Harold from behind just as the old duellist resumes combat. Maebh though has prepared for this exact eventuality, and a golden lightning bolt sears down from the sky and the reaver disintegrates into a pile of fine black ash. The crack of thunder is enough to throw even the most seasoned warrior off guard, and Ovar Windchaser stumbles in shock. Harold though is used to Maebh's powers, and follows up on the distraction with a solid hit to the face with the hilt of his sword.

    "What was that?" - LD.
    "That's a bit half-hearted really. It's not really that honourable. You've just hit him anyway." - Ladyhawk.
    "Seriously, you have a sword." - LD.
    "Why not hit him with the other end? You know, the pointy bit." - Delphi.


    Harold stands back and allows Windchaser to get back to his feet.

    "See that Windchaser? That was our mage. Next time one of your reavers tries to interfere, it'll be you on the receiving end." - Harold.

    Windchaser nods his agreement and waves a hand to call his men off.

    Another crack of thunder splits the air as a golden lightning bolt smashes the mast of Windchaser's ship.


    Breanna and Aeva, who has come down once more and taken the shape of a dagger-lion, make for the ship, thinking to take some of the valuables likely onboard before it burns and sinks under the waves. A handful of reavers move from the ring of observers to intercept the Leathe and druid. Four more lightning bolts are hurled from the sky and they immolate a few reavers. Aeva rips through two more with claws and fangs and Breanna's knives claim another. Both scamper onto the ship and start rummaging through the valuables onboard.

    They are confronted on their way off, laden down with a few choice treasures, by another reaver who clutches a sabre in one hand, and a horribly burnt face with the other, having been caught near one of Maebh's lightning bolts. Suddenly, an arrow bursts through his head, and he falls to the ground, one of Kel'Serrar's enchanted arrows flickering in what is left of his eye-socket.

    Harold meanwhile manages to bear Windchaser to the ground, and while his first strike is turned aside by Ovar's shield, his second bites through the vambrace and severs his combatant's hand at the wrist.

    Biting back a howl of pain, Windchaser drops his shield and draws another axe from his belt with his remaining hand. He swings wildly, but Harold sidesteps neatly and bats the weapon out of Windchaser's hand.

    Windchaser surrenders.

    * * *

    Directly following the duel, Windchaser's ship sinks swiftly, a few choice trinkets and such recovered from the wreck by Aeva, Maebh and Breanna.

    Harold forces Windchaser to sign a contract binding him as a vassal and as a witness of the party's innocence for the events which occurred in Isenhjem. As soon as their backs are turned, Windchaser draws a concealed dagger and slits his own throat.

    They retreat to their ship for the night and see to their wounds. For his part, Reinn seems to be coming to terms with living life without an arm. In fact, as a positive, he figures it might be harder for him to kill and horribly mutilate people in the future if he is missing an arm.

    Reinn offers to show them exactly where Werencha lies. He knows, more or less, where it is. It seems that when these creatures designated him their Herald, it was almost a two-way exchange of information. He believes he can find the location.

    The heir's wound would kill any normal person. In fact, it probably should have killed him already. Even with Kel'Serrar's and Aeva's ministrations, it is a wound which would have killed most people. But of course, Reinn believes he cannot die, and so is quite happy to accompany them to the temple.

    The companions set sail with Reinn on the Tide Tremor, a course set for the lost temple of Werencha.

    And we pretty much left it there...

    The Wrap-Up:
    So this session was actually played months ago, but I've been so busy I haven't been able to finish the write-up.

    I have a whole session, plus a solo mini-session with Dev to still go up before we are up to date.

    We are also hoping to play another session of Whispers in the Dark within the next fortnight, and then Three Coins as soon as LD finishes up with her rehearsals in November.

    Hopefully, I will be able to put at least Session 5.3 up before we play the next 3 Coins game.

    Thanks for reading.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  4. - Top - End - #184
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Hi there,

    If you have read the first post recently then you may have noticed a few things there which may be aware of a few interesting pieces of news I will share with you now.

    Firstly, the group has completed Arc 5 of Three Coins and picked up another player. Where I am currently a session and an interlude behind schedule, we have still planned a game day within the next month, so hopefully I can finish all that writing on time.

    Secondly, we played Session 1.3 of Dev's Whispers in the Dark this weekend just gone. That will be posted as soon as possible, but naturally the Three Coins material will take precedence.

    Thirdly, I have started running another campaign, The Great Maw, in which I will be both experimenting with an episodic structure and also testing the balance of the system in low level play. Our first session was approximately an hour and a half long and featured Ladyhawk, Sins and Dev trying desperately not to die.

    As you can see, I have a lot of material to catch up on, so I had best get to it.

    If you have read and enjoyed this thread, please comment. We get a real kick out of it.

    By we, I mean me. I crave the respect of my peers.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  5. - Top - End - #185
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    WhiteWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Female

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Session 5.3 (a): You Were Right, Werencha Baby?

    “Veita ek inn ofrelismadr vid brjota inn firar er standa orr leid. Sasi verold munu vera heimtamt inn Shakarli. Inn solbjorg munu andlit nokkurr verold grar logr. Inn saevargangr ek inn mestr kala koma. Banahogg bida…”
    - Reinn Tordenwulf, the late Stormlord’s brother.

    ”Give me the ______ to ____ those who stand in our way. The world will __ _____ the Devourer. The _____ will ____ a world of grey water. The _______ and the great cold comes. The murder-strike waits…”
    - Harold Oakenshield attempted to translate Reinn’s words in the days before his disappearance. He was only partially successful.

    Welcome to Session 5.3 of Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword.

    A fortnight has passed since the companions set sail from Stillhet, or Serenity, on The Tide Tremor. Short sea voyage, largely uneventful, did not lessen the dread any of them felt now. Somewhere above, beyond the clouds, an ominous presence builds. Each day, the light of the sun grows weaker. The Devourer's gaze has been drawn, and soon the world will feel its wrath.

    Reinn's condition has steadily worsened the longer he spends onboard the ship. Whether his injury or long confinement is finally catching up to him, or if it is the close proximity to the water and the entities which dwell below which is causing his distress, none can say, least of all him. He is reduced to standing at the bow of the ship, wordlessly staring towards what the party can only assume is the site of Werencha. When he speaks it is only in Ancient Invarrian…

    After almost a week of sailing, with the skies growing ever darker every day, the companions finally go ashore on the largely uncharted eastern coast of Varr. Reinn leads them wordlessly inland, for several days of what feels like hopeless wandering in the thick mist and labyrinth of razor sharp rock. Finally, they arrive at a great lake, set deep in the ancient mountains. A worn road leads directly to the edge of the water, and a small camp of what appears to be pilgrims is congregating near the water's edge.

    The companions decide to wait and see.

    The next morning they awake to find that Reinn has disappeared. Despite setting watches during the night, no one saw him leave. They are concerned, but resolve not to let it bother them too much. He seemed to be close to death as it was, despite all his earlier assurances that this was not possible.

    Basically they decide that if he were important, he’ll crop up again later. If he’s not important, ah well.

    Something stirs the pilgrims by the water's edge and the companions watch in horror and wonder as an ancient temple emerges from the depths of the black lake. A causeway links the temple to the worn road, and the pilgrims begin filing through the mouldering stone doorway.

    They then discuss how to get inside, and then once inside, what to do if it goes under once more.

    "Does anyone else here actually have ranks in Swim?" - Ladyhawk.
    "I do." - Dev.
    "I can turn into a fish." - Delphi.
    "You turn into a whale..."
    "Same thing really. How many people can fit inside the whale's mouth?" - Delphi.
    "Pretty much just Breanna. You're not a big whale."
    "You know with that new talent I can go whale and then just keep my usual arms and hold their hands as I swim." - Delphi.
    "Why don't you turn into an octopus and then you can grab up to eight people?" - Yohan.
    "I don't have an octopus. Yet. I do hope to basically become Ursula and take over the world." - Delphi.
    "With the terrible power of your eight arms..."
    "Yeah, and what was it called? Ah yeah, Illusory Pit?" - Delphi.


    The companions follow the pilgrims along the causeway, doing their best to just appear to be joining the march.

    Spoiler: Map of Werencha
    Show
    INSERT MAP HERE


    On either side of the doorway leading into the lost temple sit two statues which resemble the Beast Under the Waves. They give off an imposing aura, and the companions feel quite unsettled by their close proximity. They stop before the Watchers and have a quick chat.

    "Are these anything like the Watchers of the Way from Lord of the Rings?" - Dev.
    "Uh, no?" - But they totally are.

    We dissolved into a lot of off-topic chat here.


    "Did anyone bring a hammer?" - Harold, quietly.

    "You're a walking armoury and you didn't think to bring a hammer?" - Kel'Serrar.

    "I have a spear and a compass. We can make a hammer." - Aeva, mock brightly.

    "You won't have a compass anymore, but we'll have a hammer." - Breanna.

    "You also may not have a compass anymore." - Kel'Serrar, quietly to Aeva.

    "You stole my compass!" - Aeva, irritated.

    “Somehow it comes in handy when he steals our stuff.” – LD.
    “Handy is a strong way to put it…” – Dev.
    “I have four throwing daggers too.” – Delphi, still reading out her gear.
    “Ummm…” – Sins.
    “You stole my daggers too? LD, how could that be useful?” – Delphi.
    “You could steal my claymore. I wouldn’t recommend it though. I’d probably notice.” – Yohan.
    “They all thought that once mate.”


    “**** this.” – Harold, who steps forward and prods the statue with the haft of a spear.

    Nothing happens.

    “We set fire to the statue!” – LD.

    The companions walk inside, and so do they enter the lost temple of Werencha.

    The stone room opens before them, floor still slick with water. In the far left corner, a group of pilgrims have gathered. An archway lies before them too. The companions panic slightly at the thought that if the pilgrims turn around they are all in plain sight.

    “Dev, what are you doing?”
    “He’s now a pilgrim.” – Sins.
    “Okay, Sins, what are you doing?”
    “I’m now a pilgrim too.” – Sins.
    “How far can I make Aspect Mastery extend?” – Delphi.

    Aeva picked up a Major Talent last level up, called Aspect Mastery. It allows her to perform partial Wildforms on allies she can touch.

    “Cause I have a dog, right? So if I just give them the dog’s head and fur, they would, at least in the dark, pass for Invarrians, right?” – Delphi.
    “Yeah, I guess. They’d have the vocal capabilities of a dog though, so no speech, which means no spellcasting. They can only make dog noises.”
    “You guys cool with that?” – Delphi.
    “Woof woof mother****ers.” – LD, to great laughter.

    "Okay, they're both puppers now." - Delphi.
    "So we have two... dog-monstrosities now." - Kind of concerned.
    "You know, we're not really thinking about other uses for this new ability. It would, for instance, make a hell of a frightening experience for a captive. We could easily use this for interrogation." - Sins.
    Let the nightmare fuel commence.


    In the end, Kel'Serrar and Harold take point, disguised as Invarrian pilgrims using Kel'Serrar's illusory abilities. Maebh and Breanna walk behind them, appearing like Invarrians themselves, but unable to talk. Aeva herself sits in Harold's pocket as a mouse.

    The companions join the group of pilgrims ahead of them, Harold nodding a curt greeting to any who look.

    They go through the doorway, mingling with the other pilgrims and continue down a long, stone hallway. Water drips from the ceiling constantly, a reminder that this whole structure was underwater until very recently.

    Ahead of the group of pilgrims lies a shrine, of sorts. What appears to be a wooden block, chased with silver filigree sits upon the ground, and a statue forged of presumably dark iron stands upon it. The statue depicts one of the Beasts Under the Waves, one taloned hand reach out for the companions. Its eyes glint with a ruby gleam in the firelight emanating from the handful of torches held by the mob of pilgrims gathered around it.

    "It appears to be an offering to the god of fireball targets Ladyhawk." - Sins.

    The statue gives off an overwhelming aura of dread and disquiet.

    "That's it, leaving right now." - Dev.
    "Yep, going, going and gone." - LD.


    Aeva/Mouse vacates Harold's pocket and scampers across the stone floor, avoiding all the feet around her. She climbs up Maebh's leg, the mage having stayed hindmost of the companions.

    For the others though, the situation is a little more difficult. Harold, Kel'Serrar and Breanna are now stuck trying to get away from the statue, but the pilgrims around and behind them are pushing forwards, and the three companions are starting to draw a little attention to themselves.

    There is a horrific grinding sound, and the statue's head moves. The head tilts until the eyes are resting firmly on Harold, who is trying to surreptitiously shuffle along the wall and failing miserably. Murmurs of discontent start to raise from the crowd.

    "They're starting to think there's something not quite right about you all."
    "Yeah, these people have weird dogs." - LD, referring to Breanna and Maebh.
    "Well they haven't actually noticed Maebh yet. She's not done anything to draw attention to herself. Neither has Aeva."
    "Squeak squeak mother****er." - Delphi.


    The stony claw reaches up until a single talon is pointing directly at Harold, who has given up on trying to escape, and is now looking around, as if to determine who the statue is pointing at.

    Aeva leaves the safety of Maebh's person and scampers to the rear of the pilgrims before turning back to her regular form.

    "He's the chosen one!" - Aeva, before turning back into a mouse and making for the safety of Maebh's leg once more.

    The pilgrims around Harold seem to be getting quite irate. A few pull out daggers and other short blades. Harold answers this with his own blades and the **** really hits the fan. As the pilgrims fall on Harold, Kel'Serrar takes the opportunity to pull on an invisibility glamer and Aeva undoes the dog Aspects she placed on Maebh and Breanna, allowing both to cast if they wish.

    "Okay, so should I go lightning, or something more direct?" - Ladyhawk.
    "Lightning might be difficult, seeing as we're inside." - Dev.
    "Actually I took a Talent that allows me to call up storms wherever I wish." - Ladyhawk.
    "I was wondering about that. I was also wondering about what was more direct than lightning." - Yohan.
    "Could you Blade Wall again?" - Sins.
    "I could, but it takes so long to get it up." - Ladyhawk.
    Cue snickers.
    "The pilgrims are packed wall to wall." - Sins.
    "Could you do the sandwich press manoeuvre again?" - Delphi.


    Violence suddenly erupts in the hallway. Maebh drops a curtain of aethyric golden blades in the enclosed area, which causes a few of the pilgrims to fly apart into pieces. Breanna punches the nearest man in the stomach and Harold starts cleaving through them with swords flying.

    Breanna is able to avoid the retaliatory strike from the cultist she hit and watches as one of Kel’Serrar’s arrows erupts from the man’s head.

    “Aeva, watch my back.” – Maebh, to Aeva, who drops back to the floor and takes up her spear to engage the handful of pilgrims on their side of the blade wall.

    Maebh turns to face the oncoming cultists coming into the hallway from behind the companions and calls up a devastating gale which throws bodies into the air and into the walls. Bones snap under the pressure and the pilgrims are left broken and ruined by her power.

    The dozen or so surviving pilgrims are caught in a blast of ice-blue magic, held helpless in place by Aeva’s power as the companions mercilessly slaughter them.

    The statue remains, pointing unerringly at Harold’s chest.

    “Speak, or I will beat you with an axe.” – Harold.

    Unsurprisingly, the statue does not speak.

    “The statue is rock, no? Cause if it is, I might be able to use my Druid abilities to talk to it.” – Delphi.
    “Ah, no it is dark iron, so not really rock but metal.”
    “Metal is just refined earth really though. You should know this, from, say, Avatar.” – Dev.
    “We could use Speak to Sword...” – Sins.
    “See when you are using that ability, you’re not speaking to the rock as much as you are the spirits within the earth. So the spirits within the earth are no longer present due to it being worked.”
    “What if it has a spirit because it is a sword?” – Dev.
    “No it’s not a sword, it’s a ****ing statue and there are no spirits inside it.” – Says God.


    “Okay, whatever.” – Harold, who starts whaling on the statue with his axe.

    It has no effect.

    “Maebh, can you call up some fire on this thing? Can we try to melt it, or re-shape it or something?” – Kel’Serrar.

    Maebh presses a flaming hand into the iron statue, but it remains icy-cold to the touch.

    Ignoring the disconcerting effect of the continued pointing, Harold saunters up to the statue and begins prying the silver scrollwork from the wooden base with a dagger, figuring he should be able to sell the scraps.

    “Don’t worry Yohan, we’ll drop you in as soon as these guys stop faffing about.”
    “Meanwhile, he’s just sitting there asking himself if he really does want to join now.” – LD, laughing.
    “All good, I haven’t actually finished rolling my character yet.” – Yohan, who was busy putting together one of the tankiest tanks to have ever tanked. While tanking.


    Breanna meanwhile is slowly being overcome with the sheer evil of the place. The statue positively radiates dark energy and the temple is permeated with it.

    Maebh takes a moment to augment her senses with magic while Kel’Serrar sits down and tries to attune himself to the environment. His efforts are stymied somewhat by the maze-like structure of the temple, but he does know that both a large creature and a party of presumably pilgrims are somewhere nearby.

    The statue itself shows no signs of life. Because it is a statue.

    They resolve to forget about the statue for now and head back to the main room where they take the other doorway. They reach another hallway and follow it, trying to ignore the drops of water steadily falling from the ceiling. Another doorway opens out into a bare stone room, slick with water and algae. There are two doors at the other side of the room, one straight ahead, the other slightly to the right.

    Following an unusual scent, Harold could perceive, the companions take the door on the right. Directly ahead stands a group of pilgrims, all bearing blades of some description. Before them, tied to a stake is a large Feartarbh, a heavily scarred warrior. They appear to be preparing him for some kind of ritual, but the companions are having none of it.

    “Am I chained to the stake?” – Yohan.
    “Yes.”
    “The chains in my inventory are the ones binding me then, yes?” – Yohan.
    “Yeah, that’s cool.”
    “Are they using my padlocks?” – Yohan.
    “They can, why do you ask?”
    “I have two padlocks, but only one of them has a key…” – Yohan, to the laughter of the party.


    To the left there is dark water of indeterminate depth, and a very small island, upon which sits a small chest.

    Spoiler: An Amusing Aside
    Show
    I found out here that the death of Bjarn Tordenwulf might have been a little unclear in Session 5.1. When Yohan read it at first, he believed that the seneschal had beheaded the Stormlord and simply stuck the head in the bucket.

    Of course, I intended for that to read that the seneschal drowned the Stormlord in a bucket of sea water, but apparently it didn’t appear that way to readers. Back to the story.


    Aeva immediately springs into her dagger-lion shape and pounces on two of the pilgrims, bringing them down in a flurry of claws and fangs.

    Kel’Serrar, still invisible to normal sight, creeps over to the captive Feartarbh and picks the lock holding the massive warrior. In moments, the lock falls loose and Kel’Serrar stands back with a self-satisfied smirk.

    “Sweet, I’m free. Do I have my kit?” – Yohan.
    “No, but it is all intact and in the corner of the room.”
    “Ha, who needs weapons? I am a weapon.” – Yohan.

    He’s not wrong.


    Harold whirls through the last four pilgrims within a matter of seconds and the companions start riffling through the corpses for loot and small change. The Feartarbh, trying to rub some feeling into his arms has staggered to the corner of the room and arrays himself for battle. He’s seen enough weirdness in his life that he is not questioning the armed band smashing their way into the room with a lion, murdering everyone within seconds and his restraints just falling off for no apparent reason.

    Instead, he does the one thing which makes sense.

    “Greetings, my name is Xander Wrothgar. Thank you for your assistance.” – Xander, introducing himself to the nearest of the companions, who just happens to be Harold.

    “My name is Harold Oakenshield, and you are welcome.” – Harold. Behind him, Aeva transitions back to her natural form and offers a hand to the hulking warrior.

    “And you no longer have an arm.” – A running joke based on the truly obscene Strength and Toughness scores Xander boasts.

    Yohan asked about the money here too, which caused us to go quite in-depth regarding the coins and their values. I honestly don’t remember why I went with 12 coppers to a sulver, but I’ve stuck with it.

    “Why not make it easy and go with 10?” – Ladyhawk.
    “Because that would be six-ist.” – It took a moment before the collective groan went up.
    “I’m ****ing done hey.” – Delphi, laughing.
    “That was just bad.” – Ladyhawk.


    Various other greetings are exchanged, and they pretty much just assume that Xander will tag along with them, at least until they get out of the temple. Safety in numbers and all that.

    Back shortly.

  6. - Top - End - #186
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    WhiteWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Female

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Welcome back.

    “So that chest over there…” – Aeva, pretty keen to check out the chest on the other side of the water.

    “Yeah, I wouldn’t. There’s something in the water. I can’t see what it is, but I’m guessing that Xander here was probably going to be sacrificed to it. Good chance it is one of the Beasts.” – Kel’Serrar. If Xander is alarmed by the disembodied voice beside him, he doesn’t show it.

    “So swimming is out of the question… What about flying?” – Breanna.

    They ask how high the ceiling is. I answer around 16 feet above the water’s surface.

    “I can fly over there, but I wouldn’t have the faintest idea how to break into the chest if it is locked.” – Aeva.

    “Can you turn into something big enough to carry me over there?” – Breanna.

    “Potentially, yes. Maybe. Even better, I might be able to just give you wings…” – Aeva, thinking about the suggestion.

    “That ceiling is not really that high. Whatever’s in the water might still be able to jump out and get you.” – Xander, cautious.

    “I’m going to try and communicate with it in what little Ancient Invarrian I can. I succeeded on the Charisma Check.” – Dev.
    “Right, but, well, what are you going to try and say?”
    “Ancient thing, come out so we can discuss things with you.” – Dev, to the laughter of most of the table.
    “This is the same guy who tried to charm people by punching them repeatedly.” – Sins.
    “Like me or die!” – Dev.
    “Would you like to discuss politics? Maybe have some tea and a scone?” – Delphi.


    Kel’Serrar quietly mumbles an incantation under his breath and the water is illuminated by a soft silvery light, revealing a dark shape against the rocky bottom. His earlier guess was correct, the silhouette matches that of the Beasts Under the Waves.

    “I think we’ll go anyway.” – Aeva, who grabs Breanna by the shoulder and concentrates briefly before great brown wings spring from the excited Leathe’s back.

    “Okay, let me just tie this around you.” – Xander, who ties a rope around Breanna’s waist.

    “What’s this for?” – Breanna.

    “If the Beast jumps out and gets you, this way we can pull your mangled corpse back in.” – Kel’Serrar.

    Aeva shifts into her hawk shape and she and Breanna quickly fly over the water, hoping that the creature below them will not attempt to harm them in flight.

    They are left unmolested and safely arrive on the far bank where Breanna pulls forth her lockpicks and sets herself at the task of opening the chest. Inside lies a pile of ancient coins, a handful of arrowheads, some truly gigantic pauldrons, a couple of knives and daggers, a necklace and a rich, black cloak folded in the bottom. The chest looks like it is simply radiating preserving magics, which explains both the intact state of the items inside and the blueish sheen emanating from the steel of the knives and pauldrons.

    Aeva turns back to her natural form and they split the loot between them, leaving the coins behind. They turn and fly back over the water.

    The Beast erupts from beneath and grasps Breanna as she flies, pulling her down into the strangely illuminated water. The Leathe’s left leg is left lacerated by the strike and she is struggling to swim with the sodden great wings around her and the Beast’s claws still deep in her flesh. The rope Xander helpfully tied around her was shorn apart in the Beast’s initial strike. Seeing her fall, Xander and Harold start to strip off their armour once more. The Invarrian takes two daggers and dives straight in. Xander tries to be a little more circumspect and readies himself on the bank, massive greatsword in hand.

    Kel’Serrar nocks an arrow and readies himself to shoot at the Beast if it resurfaces, but is taken aback for a moment by Aeva taking the form of a hakal and plunging into the water herself.

    “Before Maebh’s turn, LD, I need you to roll a Strength Check.”
    “Oh ****, 89… I’m going to re-roll that one.” – LD, preparing to use a Luck Point.
    “Actually, you pass. It was a Grapple Check, you only had to roll better than the Beast did.”
    “Far out, what did you roll?” – LD, amazed that an 89 could still be a pass.
    “Yeah, not well, but I never do.”
    “Unless rolling to hurt important NPC’s. Then your rolling turns deadly.” – Sins, rubbing salt in the wound.


    Bleeding profusely from the gaping leg wounds, Breanna feels the Beast’s hold on her lessen, presumably due to the shock of having a whale fall on it. She struggles to the surface and tries desperately to get out of the deadly, ice-cold water.

    “Couldn’t she just fireball the lake?” – Dev, pointing at Ladyhawk.
    “No, she’s in the lake.” – Pointing at LD.
    “No, her.” – Dev, pointing at Ladyhawk again.
    “Yeah I know, but she’s in the lake.” – Pointing at LD once more.
    “So am I.” – Delphi, helpful.
    “So are you Dev.” – Sins, quietly.


    Breanna is startled at first by a gentle nudge beneath her, but it is only Aeva, who guides the wounded assassin to the safety of the shore where she is seen to by both the druid and Kel’Serrar. Harold and Xander follow them out, dripping wet. The Beast has disappeared.

    Maebh starts a small fire and the companions take some time to rest a little and dry out, particularly Breanna, who is still in a fair bit of pain.

    “Seven degrees of success on the Heal Check, with Aeva’s aid.” – Sins.
    “Seven degrees! Far out, good stuff!” – LD, echoed by the cheers of the rest of the party.
    “I did actually optimise Healing from the start guys, remember?” – Sins.
    “No, we just remember the poison sumac.” – Ladyhawk.


    They take the opportunity to have a quick bite to eat, and to hand out the loot from the chest. Harold gets a large curved dagger of an ancient Invarrian design, the blade of which carries a green sheen. Kel’Serrar takes the five arrowheads, ensorcelled bodkins, and starts fixing them to the shafts he has been crafting in his downtime with some enthusiasm. For Breanna, a keen knife, again glinting with that same greenish sheen as Harold’s dagger and Kel’Serrar’s arrowheads. The necklace is taken by Aeva as she recognises the jewellery’s affiliation with spirit magic, while Maebh takes the rich black cloak. Lastly, Xander takes the gigantic pauldrons.

    They resolve to head back out to the previous room and try the other door. Xander takes point, tower-shield first, warhammer clenched in a meaty fist. Harold is next, followed by Aeva, Maebh, fire wreathing her spear and providing light to the companions, and finally Kel’Serrar. Breanna sits on Xander’s shoulder, holding on to his horn with one hand, mini-crossbow in the other.

    “I have a turret.” – Yohan.

    Xander opens the door and the party troops into the room. Ahead of them lies another expanse of black water, presumably a separate body of water due to the lack of silvery light emanating from it. Kel’Serrar casts his illumination spell once more and the water glows with silvery light, revealing a massive shape under the water, a creature of great size with many limbs.

    A few minutes pass where they discuss how they would escape if the temple sinks. They all have a potential way out, save Xander, who they decide would be best served by tanking the water.

    Arms burst from the surface of the water and the calm of underground lake is disturbed by an ancient beast rising to the surface. The arms flail at the party.

    “Arms or tentacles?” – Delphi.
    “Can it be both?”
    “Do krakens exist in Norbayne?” – Yohan.
    “They do now.”

    I basically made the kraken’s attacks play out as an environmental hazard. Simply remaining in the vicinity of the beast would open up the possibility of taking a hit. Characters with high Agility would be relatively safe. Characters with low Agility… Well, we’ll see how that turns out.


    Some of the tentacles flailing about are tipped with bony blades, and all the tentacles are coated in some kind of viscous slime. Xander is knocked over by the impact of one of the tentacles, thankfully one of the ones without a bladed tip. Breanna flings herself free before the Feartarbh crashes to the ground, and even manages to retain her grip on her crossbow.

    The kraken’s strikes are answered by a golden bolt of lightning which springs forth from Maebh’s outstretched hand. The creature roars in agony and it is smoking and blackened by the powerful arcane strike she delivered upon it. The lightning bolt didn’t kill the kraken, but it really didn’t like it.

    From where she sits on the floor, hopefully out of range of the tentacles, Breanna looses a bolt from her hand crossbow, ostensibly at one of the kraken’s eyes. If she hit, it gives no indication.

    Kel’Serrar and Aeva both back away from the creature, the former back out the door with an arrow nocked and aimed at the kraken’s body, the latter with spear in hand and spell ready to cast. She then rethinks the situation, and turns into a mouse. And then turns invisible.

    “I’ve almost died too many times lately. I’m taking no chances.” – Delphi.

    Xander picks himself up and takes an almighty swing at the tentacle which rests nearby after knocking him to the ground. The heavy head of the warhammer pulverises the fleshy appendage, severing the last foot of it. What is still attached to the kraken retreats back, black blood spraying everywhere as the creature trumpets its pain yet again. The severed end of the tentacle spasms on the ground.

    Harold meanwhile takes out his boarding axe and hurls it with all his strength into the kraken’s face, figuring that targeting the body would be more likely to cause significant damage than going for the tentacles. It hits home and the beast’s agony intensifies, as does the thrashing of the tentacles, but the Invarrian does not think he caused any lasting damage.

    “Ladyhawk, use a telekinesis ability to take my axe out.” – Dev.
    “And then use the same ability to put it back in. But harder this time. More deadly.” – Sins.


    The tentacles lash out once more and both Harold and Xander decide to try and take the blows head-on. Xander receives the strike on his shield, and his knocked back slightly. Harold meanwhile shears through one of the bladed tentacles, but the severed appendage whips around and tears a rent through his armour and across the Invarrian’s chest, splattering his fur with a corrosive mucous. Gritting his teeth and ignoring the slight sizzling on his chest and neck, Harold continues the fight.

    We took a moment to view the Shark-ira video here, which is a gift to humanity.

    Breanna, ignoring the pain in her leg, pounces upon one of the tentacles and plunges a knife into the flesh. It jerks away from her, and she faces a split-second decision. Does she let go of the knife and possibly lose it, or does she hold on and let the tentacle take her?

    LD failed the Dexterity Check to retain her weapon, but I was feeling nice, so I asked LD for a Strength Check to see if she had the opportunity to hold onto the knife, which she rolled a 00 for.
    “So you have two options. You can choose to let go of the knife, or you can-“
    “Or you can just strangle the whole kraken with that roll. Your choice.” – Ladyhawk, to great laughter.


    In a heartbeat, Breanna decided that while her carving knife has sentimental value, her life has infinitely more, and she lets the blade go.

    Wrapping his arrow in magics which ensure it will fly truly, Kel’Serrar steps forward and looses in one smooth motion. The arrow sails across the cavern and punctures the creature’s eye. With a few spasms, its blackened and smoking body flips in the water, belly uppermost, tiny central brain skewered on a grey-fletched arrow.

    The ancient kraken of Werencha is dead. Aeva goes into hakal form and retrieves Harold’s axe and Breanna’s knife.

    “So the kraken is dead. Sorry guys, that is literally all there was in this room.” – With a laugh.
    “See I told you I wanted to opt out of this room.” – Yohan, to Dev, both laughing.


    The companions take another few moments to try and take stock. Harold does his best to patch up his rent cuirass, and he and both Breanna and Xander were spattered with corrosive mucous, which they spend a fair bit of time scrubbing out of their fur in the ice-cold water.

    Until repaired, Xander and Harold are both operating at -2 to their torso armour values due to the kraken’s acid mucous stuff. I ruled that Xander’s shield and their weapons were unaffected.

    Sins again rolled very well to heal, this time to patch up Harold, who took a nasty strike in the battle.
    “I noticed that there are no healing spells for the Guardian.” – Yohan, while we’re all getting drinks after a hectic combat.
    “Healing spells? What healing spells?” – Sins.
    “There are no healing spells.” – Dev.
    “Can that be a thing?” – Yohan, curious.
    “No.” – Deadpan, just about everyone in the room.
    “Is there any kind of magical first aid at all? Like just a wound-closing kind of thing?” – Yohan.
    “There is a Talent available to most spell casters, which gives a bonus to Healing Checks which is supposed to represent using their magic to try and help the process.”
    “There’s also battlefield cauterising. If you’re bleeding out, I can cause a little bit of damage to stop that bleeding by setting you on fire basically.” – Ladyhawk.
    “That sounds like you would make it hurt more than the bleeding.” – Dev.
    “Take your medicine Dev.” – Ladyhawk, the stone-cold killer.


    After recovering once more, the companions troop back to the room they found Xander in, hoping to find another door. After a few minutes of fruitless searching, they eventually decide to just have Xander make one in the wall directly to the right. Doing so opens up a long hallway, which they walk down until they find a closed wooden door, banded with iron.

    Opening this door reveals another long hallway, which Harold starts to walk down before he is stopped by Kel’Serrar.

    “Around ten paces ahead there is a snare trap on the floor.” – Kel’Serrar, quietly, with a hand on the Invarrian’s shoulder.

    Harold nods his thanks and Kel’Serrar helps to guide everyone carefully over the line. Despite all their searching and magically assisted sight, Maebh and Kel’Serrar cannot determine the purpose, nor function of the trap.

    Beyond the trap there is another heavy door, which leads to another long hall which opens out into a room, the stone floor to the left of which falls away into more dark water. Kel’Serrar illuminates this body of water too, revealing a moderately sized doorway approximately eight feet beneath the surface which leads into another cavern.

    Unfortunately, Delphi was struggling at this stage, feeling a bit nauseous and unwell, so Aeva pretty much dropped out of the session for this part as Delphi tried to recover for the finale.

    “So who is going to go explore?” – Maebh, clearly hoping it won’t be her.

    “I would, but there are no spirits here. I am growing weak. I must rest.” – Aeva, who has turned very pale in their time in Werencha. Shaking a visibly weary, she sets herself down on the ground, with the injured Breanna. Xander places his, admittedly musty and dirty cloak over the two of them.

    “I will go, for as far as my breath can take me anyway.” – Xander, once again stripping his armour.

    And I will leave it here for now…

    The Wrap-Up:
    This session has taken an absolute age to write up. I am not quite three hours in, and quite a bit of the action of the temple of Werencha hasn’t even occurred yet, but it has taken me around twenty hours of work to try and complete even this small offering.

    I was really happy with Yohan’s first session with us. Xander is a really entertaining character and Yohan himself really fits the group well I think.

    We’re going to play again this Sunday, so hopefully I can finish Session 5.3 by then. I also hope to have an interlude up by Sunday too.

    Cheers,

  7. - Top - End - #187
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Session 5.3 (b): Our Goal Has Been Reached

    “Ek njota smidad vid foerad brenna vid inn myrkr, daudr vid inn verdr eda lif vid inn firar Varri.”
    - Inscription on the blade of the Gilded Sword of Werencha.

    “I was forged to bring light to the darkness, death to the deserving and life to the people of Varr.”
    - Harold Oakenshield’s reasonably accurate translation.

    We resume with Xander Wrothgar, who is currently walking down a submerged hallway, able to see only by the light of Kel’Serrar’s Starlight spell, which is illuminating the very water Xander is walking through.

    Meanwhile, back on the bank, the other companions watch over the Feartarbh and take a well-deserved rest. The harsh conditions are taking their toll, particularly on Aeva.

    “So why did your people build an underwater temple?” – Maebh, to Harold.

    “It wasn’t always underwater I believe. Plenty of parts of this structure look like the ground was solid rock before whatever event occurred to drive it into this lake.” – Harold.

    Xander re-emerges from the water and shares what he found.

    “There is an underwater corridor through that archway. The corridor leads back to the kraken room.” – Xander, drying himself off near the fire Maebh quickly conjured.

    “How do you know this?” – Harold, likely not thinking clearly due to the heavy hit he sustained earlier.

    “I know this on account of the giant kraken corpse still floating in that room.” – Xander, blunt.

    “Fair enough.” – Harold, with a slight smile.

    “Unfortunately that was as far as I dared to go. I was running out of air fast.” – Xander, strapping on his armour and then helping Breanna up onto his shoulder once more.

    “I think I may have some strength left.” – Aeva, getting to her feet.

    “If you intend to go scouting we can’t have you getting hit.” – Kel’Serrar, laying an invisibility enchantment upon the Selkye.

    Aeva:
    Now invisible, the sick druid slips into the water as a hakal and with a slight splash and a ripple, is gone, visible only as a faint grey shadow in the light of Kel’Serrar’s illumination spell.

    She swims down the corridor and comes to the corpse of the kraken, where she makes a promising discovery. Hidden away in an underwater alcove under the shore where they fought the kraken not that long ago, is a tunnel, which leads down into the darkness.

    Having found a potential way forward, Aeva goes back to her companions and informs them of the tunnel. They resolve to meet in the kraken room and Aeva sets out underwater again, this time to scout out her newly found tunnel.

    Carefully, so as not to disturb the still water any more than necessary, Aeva/Hakal swims through the black tunnel, using the echolocation of the hakal to try and guide her way, hoping that anything in the area will not be able to pick up the high-frequency sounds.

    She emerges from the tunnel in yet another submerged hallway, but this time she is not alone. Judging by the faint shape she can make out in the water, it seems to be one of the Beasts themselves. Thankfully, it does not seem to have noticed her presence yet. As quietly as she can, Aeva tries to turn and head back to the kraken room.

    She is not careful enough.

    The Beast launches into action, unable to see her, but able to feel the disturbances in the water and just sense her presence. The talons of the Beast manage to catch a glancing blow on Aeva/Hakal’s tail as she swims, but it doesn’t manage to get a good hold of her. It does however keep pace with her as she swims at full pelt back up the submerged tunnel towards the kraken room.

    Aeva practically flies out of the water and beaches herself on the bank, which immediately puts the companions on alert. They can only see her as a very vague outline, but they hear the splashing and shuffling as she tries to pull herself up onto land. The water is still illuminated by Kel’Serrar’s earlier spell, and it reveals the shape of the Beast well under the surface.

    Kel’Serrar and Maebh stand ready as Aeva turns back to her natural form and tries to pin the Beast in place with a magic snare. She succeeds, and the creature is unable to keep swimming. It drops like a rock to the very bottom of the underground lake.

    Harold grabs a spear and tosses it to Xander before taking another for himself and the two of them stand on the very edge of the bank, ready to stab anything that comes to the surface.

    Breanna meanwhile, ignoring the fact that losing control of a daemonic entity while receiving a piggyback ride would be quite unfair to her steed, tries to fling an aethyric dart at the Beast, but is unable to hold the power together long enough to coalesce it into a dart.

    Aeva feels a straining in her mind, and then a sharp pain as the Beast breaks free of her trap with a surge of will. It knows there is a powerful caster among the companions, and can sense that Maebh is the most powerful of them, and so it tries to sink some insidious tendrils into Maebh’s mind. The Danann shrugs it off with some effort, but is quite scared by the ancient and otherworldly power which just brushed against her consciousness.

    While this is happening, Breanna manages to fling a dart down into the silvery depths, but the magical attack has no real effect on the Beast. Xander and Harold look at each other and dive straight in, spears outstretched. Together, they pin the beast on the polearms.

    Between the two of them they rolled 72 Damage on it, before Toughness reduction though.

    They bring the skewered corpse back up the surface, and again set about trying to dry off and warm up around Maebh’s conjured fire. They study the corpse for a small while, noting the massive black eyes, razor-sharp talons and the sandpaper-like grey skin. Repulsed, they throw the corpse back into the water.

    Aeva heads back to the corridor she encountered the Beast in. There are two heavy doors which seem to be holding the water in this room. Aeva picks one at random and bashes it down with her snout, which causes the water to drain out all over the floor of the room it reveals. She sends a Whisper back to the other companions.

    “I am safe. Go back to the room we found Xander in, and then head through the southern door. Follow the water.” – Aeva’s Whisper.

    In the far right corner of the room is another dark cavern, filled with black, salt water. The cavern leads downwards into a tunnel, and the companions strip off most of their armour and their outer clothing. So far they’ve done their best to try and stay out of the water as much as they can, but now they all need to swim to go any further.

    Breanna checks over her books, and is both surprised and glad to see they survived her earlier submersion. They all leave the majority of their weapons behind, putting their faith in unencumbered speed.

    “Xander, can you lock this door behind us?” – Harold, not realising that there’s an exactly 50% chance this could go horribly wrong.

    “Yeah sure.” – Xander, thankfully choosing the lock he carries a key to.

    Having left a lot of their gear behind, the companions dive into the black tunnel.

    * * *

    They emerge after some underwater twists and turns, into a rocky tunnel. It is completely without light, until Kel’Serrar uses his power to conjure a faint silvery light everywhere. The floor of a stretch of the tunnel ahead is covered in water, which they traverse as quickly as they can, Breanna still using Xander as her own personal steed.

    There are two passageways on the other side of the watery section.

    “Which way are we going?” – Maebh, after they have crossed the stretch of water.

    “Left. Always go left. If you always go left then you can just default right out. Doesn’t always work, but it is a reasonable bet.” – Xander, sharing his wisdom.

    “We could possibly split up?” – Aeva, weakly. The swim seems to have sapped the last of her strength, and she leans very heavily on her spear, skin pale.

    “No. Several of us are wounded already. Let’s not do that.” – Kel’Serrar, testing the edge of his dagger.

    They move forward, Xander first with his claymore, Breanna on his shoulder with knives ready. Kel’Serrar with his longsword and dagger is next, and crucially his Ring of True-Sight which they want right up at the front of the party. Following him is Maebh, with Aeva/Mouse safely in her pocket and last is Harold, two swords in hand. They figure that if anything sneaks up on them, better that Harold is there than one of Maebh or Kel’Serrar.

    In this formation the companions follow the tunnel, which winds ever so slightly down. Several parts are quite narrow, which is hard enough for Harold, let alone Xander. Luckily they had already left their bulkiest equipment back in the main part of the temple, and so they are not hampered by their gear.

    Finally, they arrive at a massive double door, made of a dark iron. Whatever the material is, it looks similar to the material used to forge the statue of the Beast Under The Waves which they encountered earlier.

    Upon the door is a carven scene depicting a great flood and destruction being wreaked upon the world. Engraved in the iron above the door is the following inscription in Ancient Invarrian.

    Quote Originally Posted by Inscription upon the doorway.
    Inn firar er bella vid vada sasi dyrr munu falla, nema inn firar eiga inn megin vid heimtamt vid Marglodmaegir. Gaetinn vid Shakarli. Gaetinn vid Hossaevargangr…
    Spoiler: Harold’s later translation:
    Show
    “Those who dare to pass through this doorway will be slain, unless they possess the strength to claim the Gilded Sword. Beware the Devourer. Beware the __________.”


    After taking some quick notes to keep the inscription for posterity, Harold nods to the others and opens the doors. A room is revealed before them. To the left is yet another stretch of dark water, presumably a waterway which leads to another section of this gigantic complex. To the right lies a massive shrine, crafted from the same dark iron metal that these creatures seem to favour. It depicts almost a hundred statues of the Beasts Under the Waves, which seem to be engaged in some kind of rite, or perhaps combat.

    But it is the denizens which were kneeling in front of the shrine, which now stand and produce all manner of rusted and corroded bladed instruments of death, which command the attention of the companions.

    These people were once Invarrians, pilgrims of the same kind which the companions faced and defeated earlier, but these look as if they have been down in the depths for far too long. They have been blessed, in their fashion, by the Beasts they have taken as their gods, and have been remade to suit the world the Beasts wish to bring into being.

    These pilgrims have almost all lost their fur, but are covered in skin similar to that of the Beasts’ themselves, like grey razorblades. Their heads are great fanged maws, like those of sharks, with teeth like serrated knives. Their fingers are webbed.

    But it is the eyes which are most disconcerting, black and lifeless.

    “The Invarrians are the dog-people right?” – Yohan.
    “Yo.” – Dev, in acknowledgement.
    “Yes. Dev’s people.”
    “Dude, your people are ****ed up.” – Yohan, to Dev.
    “Aye, at the moment, yes, they are.” – Dev.
    “So does that mean these things are dogfish?” – Sins.


    Silently, the dozen mutated creatures stalk towards their new prey.

    “Can I try a Charm Check?” – Dev.
    Collective groans and a few facedesks.
    “Ah, yeah sure. For everyone who wants to rely on Dev’s Charm attempt, feel free to skip Initiative.”
    Everyone, including Dev, rolls Initiative.

    I’m all for them trying to talk their way out of situations, but, well, does anyone honestly think that a shark can be reasoned with?


    “I understand that you probably want to kill us all, but can we perhaps try to discuss just what is happening here?” – Harold, swords held before him in a tentative guard.

    The lead mutant lets out a bestial hissing sound and charges Harold, axe raised.

    “You get the feeling that they didn’t even understand you.”
    “That’s a solid feeling right there. I can understand why you would feel that way.” – Yohan.


    Kel’Serrar surprisingly springs forward with his longsword in hand, striking at the lead mutant, but the blow is deftly parried by his chosen target, the ranger’s lack of experience with the melee weapon evident.

    Maebh looses a ferocious gout of flames from her outstretched hands, which incinerates two of the mutants where they stand, and causes another two to recoil in instinctive fear of the fire. Taking advantage of the confusion, Harold springs forward into their midst, blades flashing. Unfortunately, these are quite formidable opponents, and Harold is only able to fell one of them, one of his blades severing the horrific creature’s head.

    Xander pushes his way forward, and a golden orb of energy springs into being around him, which grants some protection to his allies.

    Xander pulled off a Shield of Courage, which grants armour bonuses to all allies within a certain radius. It is one of the highest casting value Guardian spells in the game.

    The Feartarbh immediately draws the attention of four of the beasts, and the hulking warrior trusts to his inherent toughness to weather the two strikes which hit him.

    Even without armour as he is, with Shield of Courage Xander negates 15 Damage from every strike. Against many enemies, with his plate armour this makes him almost untouchable. But then, this happened.

    *rolls Damage*
    “Okay. Exploding dice.”
    *rolls Damage again*
    “Okay…”
    *rolls Damage again*
    “Okay!”
    *rolls Damage again*
    “Right, sorry Yohan, that’s 40 Damage on you…”
    “That puts me at… Just below half health. That’s bull****.” – Yohan, laughing.

    If that strike had hit anyone else in the party, even a fully armoured Harold, they would be dead, probably at least twice over. But Xander is a truly ungodly tank.


    Unfortunately, Xander either forgot he had left his armour behind, or underestimated the savage ferocity of his opponent, because one of the mutants cleaves an axe straight into the Feartarbh’s side and then rips a ragged chunk of flesh loose from his shoulder with a ripping bite.

    “Hold on LD, I’m going to Frenzy.” – Yohan.
    “Oh ****.” – LD.
    “You’re not even going to try and restrain it?”
    “Well I can roll, but I won’t be able to stop it.”
    *Yohan rolls his Willpower Check*
    “Yeah, that’s a 90.” – Sins.
    “I’m bracing myself.” – LD, laughing.
    “I should probably look at getting her a saddle or something.” – Yohan, hopefully joking.


    “Hold on Breean-AAAAAAARRRRGHH!” – Xander, as he goes into a blood-rage.

    The Leathe manages to not only hold on to the giant Feartarbh’s horns, but is actually almost looking forward to the ride, as Xander goes fully on the offensive.

    “Awww yiss. I’ll call out occasional directions to you.” – LD, to Yohan.

    One mutant strikes at Kel’Serrar, but the ranger is surprisingly able to parry the blow.

    “This is up there with the weirdest sessions we have ever had.” – LD.
    “You think? I’m not sure. The murder mystery in Urik’s Landing was just, ‘what the **** man?’ the whole way through.” – Dev.
    “Yeah that one and then Bat-**** Insanity were the two weirdest ones before, but this one is up there I reckon.” – LD.
    “This one overtook them as soon as I started making melee attacks.” – Sins, to general laughter.

    Back in a moment.
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2016-11-22 at 11:01 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  8. - Top - End - #188
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    And we have returned once more.

    Harold takes a glancing blow from a mutant’s knife as three of the creatures converge on him, but the duellist’s speed and skill is able to keep him safe. Kel’Serrar backs off slightly behind the Invarrian, his initial burst of optimism ruined by his abject inability to cause any damage in close combat. Maebh readies an action just in case the mutants overcome their fear of fire and try to engage her.

    And then Xander cleaves into the mutants with his claymore, splitting one completely down the middle with an earth-shaking roar.

    “Can I roll to Intimidate the rest of them?” – Yohan.
    “Yeah sure. If you’re using the whole splitting an enemy in half, then the roll is keyed off your Strength, with any Intimidation modifiers you might have.”
    “Does that include the bonus to Strength that Rage gives me?” – Yohan, questioning.
    “Yes of course.”
    “Right, so with Rage, my Strength is actually 105 at the moment. So my Intimidate roll just needs to be under 130.” – Yohan.
    “Holy ****!” – Just about everyone.


    The three mutants still on Xander back off, respecting his prowess and sheer strength. Two of them move towards Harold, while the third attempts to engage Kel’Serrar. One of them lands another glancing hit on Harold, but does not cause any significant damage. Kel’Serrar, now facing two of the mutants decides to fight as defensively as he can.

    “Maebh, help, please!” – Kel’Serrar, desperately ducking and weaving.

    The mage releases another gout of amber flames, washing over the mutants attacking Kel’Serrar, immolating both of them. Half of the horrific creatures have been felled now. Only six remain, and four of them have Harold surrounded. The other two are stalking Maebh and Kel’Serrar, trying to avoid both the mage’s golden flames and the enraged Feartarbh in the middle of the conflict.

    Caught up in the whirling of blades, Harold puts a mutant down and causes a serious injury to another, simultaneously avoiding all their return blows. He is soon joined by the roaring Xander, who charges in claymore first. Yet another mutant falls under the warrior’s blade and the Feartarbh’s charge carries him into the one Harold injured earlier.

    “So Strength Check to knock him Prone thanks to Smite.”
    “What’s your Strength again?” – Ladyhawk.
    “Yeah, 105 at the moment. *rolls* And that’s a 05 on dice.” – Yohan.
    “Right, ten degrees of success… That is obscene.”


    The mutant pilgrim literally goes flying, pulverised by Xander’s attack. He smashes heavily into the stone wall on the other side of the room and crumples to the floor, undoubtedly dead. From her vantage point on Xander’s shoulder, Breanna throws a dagger into the throat of one of the mutants stalking Maebh and Kel’Serrar, who both gang up on the other one and put it down with spear and sword.

    The last mutant is despatched by Harold’s blade, and silence falls on the room once more, punctuated only by the heavy breathing of the combatants and the last little spasms from the butchered mutants.

    Xander falls to his knees, the red-rage leaving his eyes as the extent of the damage done to him becomes apparent. He is seen to immediately by Kel’Serrar, who pronounces that the giant warrior will live, and applies what bandaging he can.

    The companions take a little time to study the statues before them, which show no signs of movement, though the angle of the carven waves gives an illusion that they may be crashing over the scene. Of the statues of the Beasts themselves, their eyes glint with a ruby gleam and they appear to be locked in some kind of internecine war.

    Harold takes a few moments and tries to pry out the ruby eyes of one of the statues with his dagger, but doesn’t get anywhere.

    On the other side of the room is yet another dark underground lake, and once again Kel’Serrar exercises his power and illuminates it, revealing a large archway, again submerged. Together, the companions dive in, and eventually emerge in a round room, most of which is submerged. There is a small section of stone floor, and right on the edge of the floor and the water, stands a tall podium, roughly hewn from the rock, and within which, embedded almost to the hilt, is an ancient blade.

    “In true Arthurian fashion, a sword in the stone which apparently can only be drawn by the worthy.”

    The companions get up onto the stone floor and then stand there, observing the blade with wariness. To those who can see such things, the blade is fantastically magical and almost seems to exist in multiple realities at once.

    “So, who is worthy?” – Kel’Serrar.

    “Honestly, probably Harold. I’d be concerned about whatever power might be watching over this temple knowing if someone other than an Invarrian touched the sword. Harold’s our best chance I think.” – Xander, which the others agree with.

    “So what happens if, say, the temple starts coming down around us if we take it?” – Maebh, concerned.

    “Right, so here’s the plan. You all head out, except you Maebh. We’ll give you around ten minutes headstart before I try to take the sword. If the temple starts falling apart, you’ll at least have a reasonable chance of making it out alive. If it doesn’t, we’ll meet in the entrance room. If the sword won’t release itself, Maebh can send you all a Whisper and you can come back and we can try someone else.” – Harold, coming up with a very reasonable plan.

    They agree and the party troop out, save for Harold and Maebh, who hands the sleeping Aeva/Mouse over to Kel’Serrar before they leave. The minutes pass with agonising slowness until eventually Harold and Maebh decide it is time.

    The Invarrian approaches the podium carefully, and gently, reverently, grasps the hilt. He pulls, again gently at first, but then harder until he is straining with all his might, until finally, the blade shifts and he draws it out, revealing a gleaming golden blade, impossibly sharp and etched with runes in Ancient Invarrian.

    There is a sound like distant grinding and Harold and Maebh immediately dive back into the water and swim for their lives. They race past the statue-shrine, ignoring the alluring glint of ruby eyes. When they reach the camp the companions had set up before, they discover that the others had already grabbed their gear, and so they do not stop running and swimming as fast as they can.

    Finally they round a corner and see their companions standing in the entrance room, warming themselves around a fire Kel’Serrar managed to light using scrounged up axe-hafts from defeated pilgrims. They are all rugged up, and Aeva is almost being force-fed soup in an attempt to try and help her recover from her ordeal.

    “Did you not hear that grinding sound?” – Maebh, as Harold grabs a spare bit of oilcloth and wraps up their newly acquired ancient relic.

    “No, we didn’t. Doesn’t look like the place is coming down around our ears though. Want some soup?” – Breanna, replying to Maebh, with a bowl of piping hot soup in hand.

    * * *

    The companions make their way to The Tide Tremor, which is somewhat surprisingly, still in good shape and unpillaged, moored on the eastern coast. Xander resolves to join them after hearing of how the Devourer is not just a local problem, but a potentially world-ending one. He and Breanna strike up quite a close friendship, but with that said, Breanna just about gets on with everyone.

    “So the Prophecy of the Three Coins right, the prophecy I was sent to Norbayne to properly investigate to begin with? You know how the theory is that we are the ones who carry the Three Coins?” – Harold, sitting the group down to have a quick chat in the captain’s cabin. A world map lies on the table before them.

    “Actually no. Breanna told me a little about it, but she didn’t tell me everything.” – Xander.

    “When birds clash in fields of Summer, the struggle will be resolved by those who dare wield the Gilded Sword.” – Harold, reciting from memory.

    “Birds clashing in fields of summer must be the conflict between Elspeth and Naille around Summer Hill. The eagle and the robin, or whatever the Naillish sigil is.” – Kel’Serrar.

    ”Artefacts they shall possess, three in number and forged into vicious circles, coins of an ancient and powerful currency, an eternal link to the Aethyr. Only those of the utmost strength and the purest of intentions will bend the true power of the coins to their will, and they shall do so, bringing fire and death to the lands of the Queen of Eagles.” Now if we are the bearers of the Three Coins, then we’re supposed to bring fire and death to the lands of the Queen of Eagles, presumably Elspeth, which suggests to me that she might be quite involved in all this business. - Harold, offering his own interpretation.

    “Seeing as that is where the coins themselves are from, seems like a good bet.” – Maebh.

    “We don’t know the coins are from Elspeth, do we?” – Harold, questioning.

    “Not really, but we do know that Brewer was working for Elspeth, and had occult connections there. There is a good chance the coins were a gift from someone of Elspeth. I wouldn’t be surprised if they were from the Queen herself. She’d have the resources to at least procure artefacts like these coins and would probably be better served by lending them to someone who could use their power in enemy territory than try to use them herself.” – Kel’Serrar, delivering his own well thought-out theory.

    “The wielders of the ancient artefacts will be heralded by the demise of the Lord of Wolves, who will rise again before the end, the Bastard King, cursed to hold power for but a short while and the Storm’s Scourge, lord of the waters, yet undone by them.” – Harold again.

    “Well I put the Lord of Wolves down.” – Breanna, smug.

    “Yes, but according to prophecy he’s getting straight back up again by the sound of it.” – Kel’Serrar.

    “The Bastard King was probably Tremor.” – Aeva, quietly.

    “And the Storm’s Scourge, I reckon was the Stormlord of Varr. Lord of the waters, yet undone by them? Fits a reaver-king who drowned in sea-water.” – Harold, darkly.

    “So the Wolf King may not be completely dead… Do we go back to Dreven and try to put him down properly?” – Kel’Serrar.

    “I don’t know about that. I’m concerned about Elspeth. I think we might be running late on the fire and death in Elspeth. I fear that they’re much closer to their goal than we realise.” – Maebh, worried.

    ”If fail these companions do, death will reign in all the lands and the Devourer will come forth to reap its harvest. If success they can achieve, the Devourer’s reaping will be postponed for two-score, four score or fifteen-score years, but one cannot halt destiny forever. Thrice before has the Devourer been defeated, but it is ever poised to swing the Scythe of Doom and unleash the Greyflood.” – Harold, finishing his recitation.

    “Scythe of Doom sounds quite… Problematic. Let’s go with problematic.” – Xander, quietly.

    “On the plus side, if we succeed, we put their plans back by at least two-score years. There’s a good chance that if we do this, we may not ever need to worry about it again in our lifetimes.” – Breanna, not realising that Maebh and Kel’Serrar at least probably still have quite a long life ahead of them.

    “First things first though, let’s just try and stop them.” – Harold, rolling up his map.

    "Now I know we are on a time limit, but if we are up against the end of the world, then I really need to try and find my family. Harold and I heard rumours when we were in Nordtarnet that they were in Southreach. My mother is a Seer herself. She might be able to help us." - Aeva, hoping to convince her companions to come with her.

    "Aye, family is important. I would like to go and talk to Helga myself before we leave. Shall we got to Ravnsalm and then Southreach?" - Harold, putting it to the rest of the party.

    "Family is everything. Yes, we go to Ravnsalm to ensure Helga's safety, and then we find your family." - Breanna, solemnly and turning to Aeva.

    Maebh and Kel'Serrar silently nod their agreement.

    "I owe you all my life. Amongst my people, this means a great deal. I will follow you, wherever you may go, until you release me, or death takes me." - Xander, hand over his heart.

    The companions look slightly awkward.

    And we left it there…

    The Wrap-Up:
    This session was a pain in the arse to write up. Most of the writing in Part A was actually documenting only 20 minutes of gameplay. All in all, these two write-ups took me approximately thirty hours to write, which is really not an efficient use of my time. :P

    We have a session on Sunday, which should be fun. We are pretty sure at this stage that everyone is going to make it. I will be very disappointed if this is not the case.

    We also have an interlude, or we might do, which was supposed to cover what everyone wanted to do on the voyage from Varr back to Norbayne. I also haven’t gotten a definite on just where they are going, which has made trying to prep for the session an absolute nightmare.

    We shall have to see.

    I hope this was enjoyable. As always, please comment on here if you enjoyed reading it or have any questions.

    Thanks for reading,
    Cheers,

    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2016-12-09 at 01:08 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  9. - Top - End - #189
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Just another quick update everyone.

    At the moment I am three sessions behind on write-ups, but I have almost finished the conclusion of Arc 5. The table of contents in the OP contains some information on what is coming soon. I will hopefully have all the write ups done by Christmas, which will be a nice gift of sorts.

    If anyone is interested, I can post the current character sheets as well. I also need to remember to scan and upload the maps.

    We have something like three more sessions to play before 3 Coins finishes forever, but we will see.

    Cheers, and see you soon.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  10. - Top - End - #190
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Session 5.4: The Vaults of Ravnsalm

    “It would appear that there was a lost way of fighting in the fall of the Bovus Empire. Set on the shoulders of the greatest Legionnaires, Leathe auxiliaries from the Wardenfells could strike at the foes of the Bovus from an elevated position, or even weave magics from the safety of their companions’ shoulders. Specialised saddles were apparently crafted for this very purpose, but none seem to have survived to the present day…”
    - From the works of Eohelm Byre-Wulfric, Lord Historian of Araecan.

    "Welcome to Session 5.4."

    "You actually have maps today!" - Dev, excitedly.
    "Yes, I actually have maps."
    "Not like in the write-ups. I was reading them last night and Sins asked me if I had seen the maps, which of course I hadn't. So I clicked the spoiler, and boop! INSERT MAP HERE." - Yohan, disappointed.
    "The INSERT MAP HERE piece is without a doubt Norbayne's most common artwork."

    With that said:
    Spoiler: Map of Varr
    Show
    INSERT MAP HERE


    It takes the better part of a week for the Tide Tremor to make it to the safety of Ravnsalm. Thankfully for the companions, they do not encounter any of the Beasts From Under the Waves, nor are they attacked on their voyage at all. Finally, after days of sailing, they are approaching the port of Ravnsalm, late in the afternoon.

    In the distance, three Invarrian longships, moving very quickly and flying the banners of the Oakenshields. They hail from Ravnsalm, and it doesn't take long before they are within shouting distance.

    "Who are you? State your purpose here!" - Captain of the lead longship.

    "I am Harold Oakenshield and these are my companions! I wish to go home and talk with my sister!" - Harold, shouting back.

    "We will escort you to the shore! I am sorry Lord Oakenshield, but we are under orders to question anyone who approaches!" - Captain Ironhull, who then gives orders to his crew to head back to shore.

    The companions, aboard the Tide Tremor, follow the longships, wary of the welcome they may be about to receive.

    * * *

    Ravnsalm looks a bit different from the way it did last time they were there. A very light snow falls upon the town, muffling footsteps and the sounds of town-life. They disembark at the northern docks and make their way through the lower market and to the Winding Path, the narrow road which climbs the sheer cliff between the port, the lower market and the town of Ravnsalm proper. The market is a sad sight, a far cry from the vibrant, bustling place it was almost a month ago. A handful of vendors still try, vainly to hawk their wares, but no trading ships are being let into the harbour, and so most merchants have simply given up. Almost a hundred stalls lie broken and abandoned.

    Upon reaching the top of the cliff they see the craftsmen's district to the north, which is just about the most active part of the town. The clamour of hammer on anvil rings throughout Ravnsalm as the populace prepares for civil war.

    "What is it?" - As Yohan starts laughing to himself.
    "It's just that when you asked us all what we wanted to buy in the interlude, I finally thought of something. A saddle for Breanna." - Yohan, to general laughter.
    "I am running off around three hours of sleep. This will probably keep happening." - Yohan.


    "Why is everyone leaving?" - Xander, turning to Harold as they walk along the road in the centre of Ravnsalm.

    "I've been denounced as a traitor and a heretic." - Harold, quietly.

    "So no one wants to be under your rule? That's understandable." - Yohan.
    "Well my sister actually rules the town, not me." - Dev.
    "Yeah, but family names are easily tainted when your brother is a dangerous traitor." - Yohan.
    "Basically, Harold is divisive and Helga's a bit of a ****-stirrer."
    "Awesome, I love this town already." - Yohan, sarcastic.


    Xander approaches one of the merchants, a fruit-seller, who is loading most of his goods onto a small wagon.

    "Hello there. Why are you leaving friend?" - Xander, handing over some small-change for fruit.

    "Our lord, Helga Oakenshield has, in her wisdom, declared that Ravnsalm is a safe place for people to come and escape the drownings." - Fruit-seller, irritated at this turn of events.

    "So why would you wish to leave?" - Xander, taking the fruit he purchased.

    "It's made this whole town a target, hasn't it? Brigands to the east are killing anyone who tries to bring food in to the town and burning the outlying hamlets. Hells, they've been bold enough to actually raid the town itself. We're slowly starving to death, and what's more, the drownings themselves are starting to occur even here. As much as Helga may wish it to be so, the town is no safer than the hamlets, and it is only going to get worse." - Fruit-seller, saddened.

    "Surely a sanctuary like this is still safer than on the road?" - Xander, finishing his fruit.

    "This is no sanctuary. It's a tomb, and I would prefer to take my chances in a large group with the brigands than stay here any longer. Half the guard plans to join us, so we will have just as much protection on the road as here in the town." - Fruit-seller, who bids Xander farewell.

    The companions continue upon the road before coming up to the main gate of Herregard, the fortified keep on the northern edge of Ravnsalm, seat of the Oakenshield family. At the gate stands Helga Oakenshield, fully armed and armoured, with an expression of great displeasure upon her face.

    "Tell me you didn't kill them." - Helga, her voice breaking with sorrow.

    "I did not. I ended Windchaser up in Stillhet, but if you are speaking of Bjarn and Hosker, no, it was not me." - Harold, solemnly.

    "I had to ask. The rumours coming from Isenhjem, I just... I had to ask." - Helga, distressed.

    "It's okay sister. We will avenge him. Hosker will not have died in vain." - Harold, embracing his sister.

    She returns the hug and then shakes her head.

    "Please, come inside all of you and we will see to your clothing. You smell awful brother." - Helga, with a sad smile.

    "Hey, we've been fighting ancient underwater beasts in their own territory and we're most of us wounded. There's a reason we smell." - Harold, gently laughing.

    "Please, come on in and get yourselves cleaned up. After that, lunch and then we will discuss your next move." - Helga.

    The companions follow Helga inside and are shown to rooms for their personal use. Baths are drawn and they find warm, comfortable clothing laid out on the beds when they return to their rooms. The fact that the clothes fit quite well for all shapes and sizes is simply part of the beauty of a raiding culture, which takes everything which might have some value.

    After cleaning themselves up, they join Helga for an impromptu luncheon.

    "I have gifts for all of you. First, I will open the Oakenshield family vaults to you. Centuries of takings have been stored in there, and you are free to take from that what you will. Secondly, I have for all of you letters of receipt, entitling you to a share each in the Oakenshield Trading Company. My personal thanks for keeping my brother safe and for doing what you can to help my home." - Helga, ushering forward the servant bearing the letters.

    The companions receive the letters with varying degrees of gratitude.

    "So these letters won't really help you out in the campaign as such, but it is a nice reward for your epilogue and life after the campaign finishes for your characters."
    "Aww, neat." - LD.


    "So, Harold, you found the Sword? May I see it?" - Helga, anxious.

    Harold withdraws the blade and hands it, with great reverence, to his sister, who inspects the ancient craftsmanship and the inscription upon the blade.

    "I do have a question for you, if you wouldn't mind." - Helga, handing the sword back to her brother.

    "As you know, I have made it common knowledge that I consider Ravnsalm to be a safe haven from the encroachment of this cult, or whatever the hell these drownings are. However, this has led to quite a few events I am starting to believe, as is much of the populace, are repercussions. My question is thus: Should I continue admitting people and openly declare Ravnsalm against this business, or should I shut the gates now and try to prevent anyone from coming in, keeping everyone here already as safe as I can?” – Helga, deeply troubled.

    “These cults are powerful sister, and are growing more so by the day. We cannot stay either, we have business to attend to, both personal matters and ones which pertain to the prophecy.” – Harold, grim.

    “Essentially if things go downhill here, we won’t be able to save you. You would be on your own.” – Aeva.

    “Especially since half the guard looks like deserting to go with all the merchants who want out of here. You’ll be very much defenceless.” – Xander, applying his recently acquired knowledge.

    Helga nods to the Feartarbh. She already knows of the plan among the guards.

    “Lock yourselves in, choose carefully those you trust.” – Kel’Serrar, looking surreptitiously around the room. After all, they don’t know who may be listening.

    “I shall keep Ravnsalm secluded then. I cannot seem to prevent the party who wish to leave from going, but I would not see them murdered on the road. If I could ask one more favour from you all…” – Helga, sadly.

    “Bandits?” – Harold.

    “Indeed. Brigands in the wilderness to the north. They’re raiding, pillaging, killing. Preying on farmers. Picking off any merchants we try to send out to trade for food. I also cannot afford to send any guards out. I have no idea when we might be attacked again.” – Helga, sadly.

    “Do not worry, we will take care of them for you.” – Kel’Serrar, quietly.

    Helga nods her head in gratitude and makes to stand, but then remembers something.

    “Oh yes, did you ever find Reinn?” – Helga, questioning.

    “We did. We found him. He believes himself an immortal, uh, being… You know how Stillhet was considered to be inhabited by fey or something? I can confirm that. It’s a ****storm. We may need to get priests or druids or shamans or something over there...” – Harold, petering out.

    “So you found him, yes?” – Helga, confused.

    “Yeah we did, but, well, he, uh, how do I put this?” – Harold, uncomfortable.

    “He ran away I guess.” – Breanna.

    “Vanished might be a better term for it.” – Kel’Serrar.

    “The heir… vanished?” – Helga, astounded.

    “Ah, yeah. He didn’t really want to be the Stormlord anyway. He believed himself too dangerous for the role.” – Harold.

    “Yep. Ran off into the wilderness or some ****.” – Breanna, to Helga’s astonished expression.

    “Hey look, this whole trip has hardly been a great time for me personally.” – Harold, quietly laughing.

    Helga gives the companions directions to the Oakenshield family vault, and a key to get inside.

    “Would a locked door actually be any kind of deterrent to any of us at this stage?” – Sins.

    The general consensus is in fact, no, but Helga would like to keep her door intact.


    Upon reaching the vaults, they open the doors and uncover several rooms of cluttered junk. Plenty of it has already been picked over by Helga when she needed to outfit her militia, but there are still many, many pieces left behind.

    I told them they could ask for anything at all and I would roll to determine whether it was there. Yohan went first and asked for a shoulder-mounted saddle for Breanna’s use. I rolled very low, and lo and behold…

    Xander searches for only a few moments before he discovers the saddle of his dreams, chocolate brown and crafted from the finest Northland leather, it is clearly intended for some usage other than a common steed. He takes it eagerly and happily leaves the vaults, taking Harold’s armour with him to get it repaired.

    In the end they get the following items:
    - Breanna: A hoard of crossbow bolts and finely tooled leather vambraces.
    - Xander: The saddle.
    - Aeva: Claws made of electrum, engraved with Runes of Rending.
    - Kel’Serrar: Reinforced leather jerkin.
    Due to the players talking about bacon, eggs, potatoes and vitamin C, I cannot figure out what else they got. They did get two enchanted rings with unidentified effects and Maebh picked up some kind of improved armour.


    * * *

    It is early evening when Kel’Serrar points out a disturbance in the woodland to their right. They have been on the road for a good few hours now and the weak sun is slowly sinking under the horizon. Xander and Harold have point, with Breanna and Aeva/Hawk sitting on the Feartarbh’s shoulders. Maebh and Kel’Serrar walk behind them, eyes darting around looking for any sign of the brigands.

    “There are Invarrians in the undergrowth over there to the right.” – Kel’Serrar, who immediately cloaks himself in invisibility.

    Eight arrows fly through the air towards the companions, from both the left and right hand sides of the road. Thanks to Kel’Serrar’s quick warning, Xander is able to get his shield in between three of the incoming arrows and the party. One arrow punches into Harold’s shoulder, barely penetrating the plate of his cuirass.

    Aeva flutters into the air, barely avoiding two more arrows which flash over Xander’s shoulder.
    “I’m a pretty bird.” – Delphi, laughing.

    Maebh’s eyes glow gold and the sky overhead grows swiftly darker. Thunder cracks above and rain starts to sheet down, making archery even more difficult than the already failing light did. Despite this, Breanna takes her crossbow and looses a bolt at random into the bushes to the right of the road, aiming roughly for where the arrows came from. To her delight she hears a strangled yelp from someone she hit. Giggling a little to herself, she reloads the weapon. Maebh takes note of this, and resolves to send some lightning in there the first chance she gets.

    Kel’Serrar, invisible, makes his way stealthily through the undergrowth and uncovers a group of four Invarrians with longbows in hand. Two of them are wearing chain, which immediately makes him think they are too well equipped for mere bandits.

    On the road, a band of seven Invarrian brigands, armed with a mix of spears, axes and shields charge out ahead, angling for Xander and Harold. There is a particularly large Invarrian at the front, armed with a broadsword and a massive roundshield. Even in the deepening shadows of the overcast evening and the steadily increasing rainfall, Harold recognises the man as his own cousin, Dagor. One of the brigands hurls a broad-bladed spear at Xander and the hulking Feartarbh turns it aside with a deft movement of his shield.

    “Dagor, you traitorous bastard!” – Harold, drawing blades and charging towards his cousin.

    “Harold! I missed you cousin.” – Dagor, taking his sword in his shield-hand and drawing an axe from his belt, which he hurls with all his might. The heavy weapon sails far wide.

    “You certainly did. Your aim has not improved!” – Harold, mockingly.

    Xander concentrates for a moment and a golden orb of energy blazes to life around him, matching ones doing the same for Maebh and Harold. The Feartarbh, shield still covering Breanna as much as it is him, keeps pace with the furious Invarrian beside him.

    Above, Aeva/Hawk flies over the group to the left of the road, and unbeknownst to her, over the invisible Kel’Serrar. She alights on an overhanging tree-branch and prepares to unleash some kind of clawed assault on them.

    Maebh, following Xander and Harold into combat, raises her hands and with a great cry causes a wall of sheer force to smash into the majority of the brigands. Five of them are blasted backwards and left broken on the ground some yards away. Golden lightning flashes down from the skies above, immolating three archers on the right-hand side of the road and one on the left.

    Harold bashes Dagor’s shield to the side and thrusts a blade into his cousin’s chest. Dagor roars in pain and swings wildly in return, which Harold deftly deflects. Xander moves up beside the duelling pair, ready to support Harold if necessary. Breanna draws a knife and flings herself onto the surviving raider, tackling him to the ground and repeatedly stabbing the little blade into his throat. She then sits on the corpse and pulls out a peach to munch on as she observes the remainder of the combat.

    Kel’Serrar, still concealed and invisible in the treeline, spies Dagor and Harold duelling and decides to play some part in this. Weaving some malicious magic together, he sends the tendrils of confusing magic deep into the brigand leader’s mind.

    Dagor immediately drops his blade on the ground.

    “I have defeated you cousin. You should have realised there was no way you could have defeated me!” – Dagor, fully caught within Kel’Serrar’s Cruel Disappointment spell.

    Confused by this turn of events, Harold’s blow stops a mere hair-breadth from Dagor’s throat.

    Aeva takes the shape of a dagger-lion and springs from her vantage point above the archers, crushing one instantly and sinking her sword-like fangs deep into another’s neck. The last archer there looses an arrow at the gigantic predator, but the arrow flies way wide. He curses and runs, but Aeva/Lion is far swifter.

    The last archer, on the other side of the road, takes aim at Maebh, but he is obviously distracted by the fact that his three compatriots around him were all spontaneously immolated just seconds before. The arrow does not trouble the mage in the slightest. She responds with yet another lightning bolt.

    Breanna gets a bit annoyed with Dagor’s continued ranting and shanks him in the heel with her knife and he goes down. Xander involuntarily flinches.

    “You filthy scum. How could you believe you could stand against me!?” – Dagor, lying on the ground.

    “Why are you here?” – Harold, eyeing Breanna disapprovingly.

    “You think you can question me? Filth! I am one of Ovar Windchaser’s favoured. He ordered us here, and promised me lordship of Ravnsalm if I could disrupt your bitch-sister’s plans.” – Dagor, with obvious pride in his voice.

    Aeva pads around to the party and takes her natural shape. Beside her, Kel’Serrar rematerializes.

    “We have only a few minutes before he snaps out of it.” – Kel’Serrar, quietly, as the rainfall starts to lessen in intensity.

    “Right. Tell him to lose his pants.” – Aeva, laughing.

    “No, spare him his dignity. He fought honourably.” – Xander, gruffly.
    “Why am I the only damn good character? Harold and Kel are unapologetic murderers, Breanna’s a borderline psychopath, Maebh’s a torture-nut and Aeva is…” – Yohan.
    “There’s no borderline with Breanna’s psychopathy…” – LD, quietly.
    “Aeva is?” – Delphi, sweetly.
    “Adorably evil I think.” – Yohan, laughing.
    “I am not evil!” – Delphi.
    “I am not evil, I just… I just don’t care anymore I think.” – Dev.

    We then get a little bit sidetracked talking about the meanings of the characters’ names.


    “How many men did you have?” – Harold.

    “Ovar Windchaser himself placed his trust in me and I will never betray it. He gave me twenty-two of our finest reavers. The five who aren’t here are out on the east road at this very moment, laying a trap for those fools leaving Ravnsalm.” – Dagor, again very proud.

    “Do you have a stash and where is it?” – Harold.

    “Everything we took, we either ate it or burnt it.” – Dagor.

    “Okay, remove your pants please.” – Aeva, who has had enough of this.

    Dagor starts to try and remove his trousers, but Xander steps forward and tries to stop him.

    “No! No! Get your filthy hands off me!” – Dagor, screaming his defiance, all the while trying to wriggle out of his trousers.

    “Why?” – Harold, who can only muster enough enthusiasm for a single syllable.

    “I’m just trying to lighten the mood with some light-hearted entertainment.” – Aeva, sweetly.

    “This is not light-hearted entertainment, this is evil, taking advantage of someone while their mind is not their own. This man fought valiantly and you are disgracing him.” – Xander, who has picked the writhing Dagor up by the back of his trousers to prevent him from taking them off.

    “I am in command of my own mind!” – Dagor, still sprouting obscenities and trying to remove his pants while hanging from Xander’s ferocious grasp.

    “An unrepentant brigand who mercilessly slaughtered innocents on the road is excused by a moment of heroism?” – Maebh, quietly.

    “There’s also the matter of turning against his own family.” – Harold, a little louder.

    “No family of mine you filth!” – Dagor, still hanging from Xander’s fist.

    “Oh he will still answer for his crimes, but this is sadism, not justice.” – Xander.

    “You’ve not been with us very long Xander. Sadism is kind of what we do.” – Breanna, trying to diffuse the situation. Or enflame it further. I’m not certain.

    “Why did you betray us, your family?” – Harold, quietly.

    “Ravnsalm. Windchaser promised me Ravnsalm.” – Dagor, just before Kel’Serrar’s malicious hold over him falters.

    “Oh gods, what just happened?” – Dagor, who is released by Xander and falls to the ground.

    “Would you like the mercy of a swift death cousin?” – Harold, quietly.

    “Didn’t I just kill you? No, it seems you killed me.” – Dagor, realising the severity of his wounds.

    Harold hands the defeated reaver his flask of rum, and helps him drink some of it, then draws a knife.

    “It hurts cousin. Please, make it quick.” – Dagor, weakly.

    He bares his throat. The knife flashes.

    The companions make a large pyre and pile up the corpses before heading back to Ravnsalm.

    * * *

    “Dagor… Our own family, I can scarcely believe it…” – Helga, visibly upset by the news.

    The companions are seated in Helga’s meeting room once more. Various alcoholic beverages have been served, and Harold in particular is making steady use of it, obviously shaken by the run in with his cousin.

    “Five more of Windchaser’s men are on the road to the east too.” – Maebh, solemnly from where she stands in the corner of the room. She alone is not seated at the central table, instead looking out the window at the grey sky.

    There is silence for a time until Wolfgang puts his forepaws up on the table and looks around for any treats. Breanna pushes him back down with some difficulty. Both of the marcwolves have grown quite significantly in size now, and they are both quite unruly. One positive though, is that Breanna is fully capable of riding Wolfgang into battle if she chooses.

    “I will make sure guards are sent to ensure they are dealt with. You have more important issues to deal with.” – Helga, who pours a hefty amount of brandy in her glass before downing it in one draught.

    “Indeed. Southreach, to find Aeva’s family. We will resupply there and then go on to Norbayne.” – Harold, putting their plan forward.

    “Then I wish you all the best of luck. May the Golden God and the God of the Waves smile on your voyage.” – Helga, who then turns to Aeva. “And may you find your family safe and well.”

    She then turns and embraces Harold fiercely.

    “Come back to us Harold. I’ve already lost one brother. Don’t make me farewell another.” – Helga, whispering in Harold’s ear.

    “I will return. I promise.” – Harold, quietly returning the hug.

    And we will leave it there…

    The Wrap-Up:
    So this was actually just half a session, but it seemed that this was the best way to wrap up Arc 5, since the second half of our session after lunch seemed to cover what we wanted to do in the interlude and set up our next arc quite nicely.

    Apologies for the length, or rather lack of.
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2016-12-23 at 01:03 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  11. - Top - End - #191
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Just very quickly, I've put together a couple of tactics heavy combat tests which really go into detail regarding how the combat system works. If anyone is interested in the real crunchy aspects, it may be an interesting read.

    http://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=4970.0

    Follow that link over to Exilian and feel free to join in the discussion there or talk about it here.

    Session 6.1 shouldn't be too far off, and 6.2 has already been played too, with another game scheduled for the 8th of January.

    I've also enlisted Lady Darkmoon to assist in typing up the Great Maw games, which should see them churned out soon after Christmas.

    Cheers,
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2016-12-23 at 12:59 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  12. - Top - End - #192
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    A quick intro to our episodic campaign.

    The Great Maw

    The Campaign:
    I pitched this to the players as being something which could be played on days when the whole group was not available, or while waiting for some players for an extended period and so on. The premise was something that characters could drop in and out of without trouble from session to session. So far we have only played two sessions of the campaign, but both worked pretty well.

    The idea is that each session will begin with the players present receiving or choosing a mission which they will attempt to complete in the session, which has so far been around the two hour mark.

    The Story:
    The characters are all members of an ancient organisation, the Seekers of the Flame. The Seekers have existed, in some form of another for centuries. They originated as a mercenary band which turned against its employers in order to safeguard the smallfolk. Since then they have been involved in many conflicts, always seeking to protect those who cannot protect themselves.

    The Seekers are ostensibly heroes, but with a slightly dark tint to them. They are generally poorly equipped, as fighting for the poor doesn't pay well. They do not conscript, but must take volunteers and as such they take anyone to join their ranks, and so many Seekers are criminals escaping the law. That said, the Seekers do try to keep a tight rein on their own. Their enemies are many, and plenty of the nobility dislike them intensely for what they represent.

    Far to the west of Norbayne, over the sea, lies a chain of islands, sparsely populated. Unfortunately, these islands appear to be a staging ground for an invasion by the foul Krona, a race of hardy, war-like creatures with an insatiable appetite. The Seekers have been sent to combat this menace, but they are few in number and cannot afford to send more than a handful of troops at a time.

    It is time for heroes to stand up and be recognised...

    The Players:
    At this stage, we have had the following players.

    Spoiler: Duke Dev
    Show

    Name: Angus McFyfe
    Classes: Shaman 4
    Race: Midander (Northerner)
    Age: 26 years old.
    Eye Colour: Blue
    Hair and Skin Colour: Pale skinned with brown hair.
    Birthsign: Eagle
    Height and Weight: 6'0" and 185lbs or 84kg.

    Equipment and Abilities: Angus carries a mace and a wooden round shield and wears warm hide clothing he made himself under a long leather coat. Angus is capable of speaking with birds and communicating with spirits and is able to cause an enemy to grow weak or even fall asleep under his touch. He has a wide array of knowledge, from spirits to survival techniques, wildlife and poisons.

    Sessions Present: 1.1 and 1.3.

    Spoiler: Stats
    Show

    Combat Skill: 32
    Ballistic Skill: 31
    Strength: 30
    Toughness: 29
    Dexterity: 24
    Agility: 24
    Health: 6/6
    Initiative: 3
    Willpower: 27
    Charisma: 33
    Perception: 26
    Intelligence: 28
    Magic Level: 2
    Soulfire: -
    Luck: 4/6


    Spoiler: Ladyhawk
    Show

    Name: Mathlynn
    Classes: Necromancer 3 / Warrior 1
    Race: Dunscarth
    Age: 30 years old.
    Eye Colour: Black
    Hair and Skin Colour: White, with pale grey skin.
    Birthsign: Dragain
    Height and Weight: 5'9" and 66kg or 145lbs.

    Equipment and Abilities: Mathlynn wears light leather armour and a long coat over a light chain hauberk and carries a steel dagger and a high-quality longsword on her belt. She is capable of raising the dead in a wide variety of forms and can use Death and Blood Magic to both harm her foes and prime corpses for explosion. She possesses a wealth of knowledge of the Otherworld, daemons and Black Magic in general.

    Sessions Present: 1.1, 1.2 and 1.3.

    Spoiler: Stats
    Show

    Combat Skill: 32
    Ballistic Skill: 24
    Strength: 30
    Toughness: 40
    Dexterity: 35
    Agility: 28
    Health: 7/7
    Initiative: 3
    Willpower: 53
    Charisma: 15
    Perception: 39
    Intelligence: 44
    Magic Level: 1
    Soulfire: -
    Luck: 7/6


    Spoiler: Sins of Dusk
    Show

    Name: Elenthrus
    Classes: Rogue 3
    Race: Feartarbh (Enclaves)
    Age: 21 years old.
    Eye Colour: Blue
    Hair and Skin Colour: Dark grey pelt.
    Birthsign: Horse
    Height and Weight: 7'7" and 650lbs or 294kg.

    Equipment and Abilities: Huge and heavily built, Elenthrus wears heavy leather armour and carries two massive daggers on his belt. Somehow, for one so large, he is able to move very quietly and is an expert at concealment. He is deadly with his daggers, especially if he manages to sneak up on his target. Even in open combat however, he is a deadly opponent and an intimidating presence on the battlefield.

    Sessions Present: 1.1.

    Spoiler: Stats
    Show

    Combat Skill: 45
    Ballistic Skill: 22
    Strength: 50
    Toughness: 35
    Dexterity: 18
    Agility: 27
    Health: 15/16
    Initiative: 4
    Willpower: 27
    Charisma: 36
    Perception: 34
    Intelligence: 45
    Magic Level: -
    Soulfire: -
    Luck: 6/6


    Spoiler: Sins of Dusk
    Show

    Name: Whyliff
    Classes: Binder 3
    Race: Milander (Lowlands)
    Age: 23 years old.
    Eye Colour: Blue
    Hair and Skin Colour: Pale skinned with red hair and freckles.
    Birthsign: Hare
    Height and Weight: 5'9" and 140lbs or 63kg.

    Equipment and Abilities: Whyliff is a Midlander of average build, armoured in tough scale and armed with a sword and towershield. Whyliff is able to harness his arcane power with his blade and can increase the effectiveness of his armour with his shadow fields. He is more heavily armoured than most casters and can call upon a wide range of knowledge of various magical disciplines.

    Sessions Present: 1.3.

    Spoiler: Stats
    Show

    Combat Skill: 45
    Ballistic Skill: 21
    Strength: 44
    Toughness: 44
    Dexterity: 27
    Agility: 28
    Health: 16/16
    Initiative: 4
    Willpower: 45
    Charisma: 27
    Perception: 41
    Intelligence: 45
    Magic Level: 2
    Soulfire: 20/20
    Luck: 6/6


    Spoiler: Lady Darkmoon
    Show

    Name: Assar Eilert
    Classes: Ranger 4
    Race: Invarrian
    Age: 27 years old.
    Eye Colour: Green eyes.
    Hair and Skin Colour: Neat black fur.
    Birthsign: Wolf
    Height and Weight: 5'8" and 62kg or 133lbs.

    Equipment and Abilities: We've seen Assar before, in the Travellers in the Snow mini-session. Since then, Assar has picked up a little more experience and joined the Seekers. She carries a sword, several daggers, a bow and some throwing axes and wears sturdy leather armour and a chain hauberk. She is a competent swordswoman, a reasonable archer and a superb tracker.

    Sessions Present: 1.2

    Spoiler: Stats
    Show

    Combat Skill: 43
    Ballistic Skill: 30
    Strength: 35
    Toughness: 35
    Dexterity: 31
    Agility: 34
    Health: 3/12
    Initiative: 5
    Willpower: 30
    Charisma: 28
    Perception: 39
    Intelligence: 35
    Magic Level: -
    Soulfire: -
    Luck: 7/6


    Spoiler: Yohan Yorrvaskr
    Show

    Name: Uday Vel-Ramirez
    Classes: Engineer 3
    Race: Bruin
    Age: 20 years old.
    Eye Colour: Blue
    Hair and Skin Colour: Short black fur.
    Birthsign: Wolf
    Height and Weight: 4'4" and 200lbs or 90kg

    Equipment and Abilities: Wears heavy leather armour and carries around all sorts of equipment, up to and including a portable forge. Is capable of creating all sorts of things, and will use either a wood-cutting axe or smithing hammer in close combat if forced. He is an incredible craftsman, and has already constructed a cart with two Scorpion-pattern ballistas mounted on it.

    Sessions Present: 1.3.

    Spoiler: Stats
    Show

    Combat Skill: 27
    Ballistic Skill: 28
    Strength: 50
    Toughness: 45
    Dexterity: 40
    Agility: 27
    Health: 13/13
    Initiative: 3
    Willpower: 27
    Charisma: 23
    Perception: 22
    Intelligence: 50
    Magic Level: -
    Soulfire: -
    Luck: 6/6


    Spoiler: Redshirt No.482
    Show

    Name: Aella
    Classes: Warrior 3
    Race: Feartarbh (Enclaves)
    Age: 35 years old.
    Eye Colour: Emerald
    Hair and Skin Colour: Auburn fur.
    Birthsign: Eagle
    Height and Weight: 8'2" and 675lbs or 300kg

    Equipment and Abilities: Aella is a powerful warrior, armed with gigantic swords and armoured in tough scale armour. Her two swords would basically be greatswords in the hands of anyone but a Feartarbh, but with her astounding size and strength she can wield them at the same time. Aella's best attribute is hitting things really, really hard.

    Sessions Present: 1.3.

    Spoiler: Stats
    Show

    Combat Skill: 41
    Ballistic Skill: 30
    Strength: 53
    Toughness: 44
    Dexterity: 16
    Agility: 13
    Health: 1/16
    Initiative: 4
    Willpower: 23
    Charisma: 25
    Perception: 21
    Intelligence: 33
    Magic Level: -
    Soulfire: -
    Luck: 5/6


    Spoiler: OwlShifter37
    Show

    Name: Florian
    Classes: Druid 3
    Race: Leathe (Forest)
    Age: 27 years old.
    Eye Colour: Emerald green eyes.
    Hair and Skin Colour: Sandy blonde fur.
    Birthsign: Hare
    Height and Weight: 5'1" and 132lbs or 60kg

    Equipment and Abilities: Florian is a small Leathe who carries a spear cut to her height and wears a long leather coat over her warm homespun clothes. She has a wide range of knowledge of the wilderness and spirits and can be quite coercive. She is an accomplished shape-changer, able to take the form of an owl, a mouse or a crainn, which is basically a wolverine. She is also able to manipulate roots, branches and vines and remove curses on allies or items.

    Sessions Present: 1.3.

    Spoiler: Stats
    Show

    Combat Skill: 17
    Ballistic Skill: 35
    Strength: 23
    Toughness: 23
    Dexterity: 26
    Agility: 39
    Health: 7/7
    Initiative: 5
    Willpower: 20
    Charisma: 31
    Perception: 29
    Intelligence: 34
    Magic Level: 2
    Soulfire: -
    Luck: 5/6


    I have Lady Darkmoon helping me out with writing these sessions up. Thankfully. My workload at the moment is absolutely ridiculous, so a bit of help offered has been fantastic.

    Now it is almost 3am here, so I'm going to head off. The next session of Three Coins should hopefully be posted by the new year, with another, again hopefully, not long after that as we intend to play on the 8th of January and I would like both finished by then.

    Night!
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2017-01-09 at 07:07 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  13. - Top - End - #193
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Session 6.1: How to Disappoint a Farmhouse and Alienate People

    …Such clubs were rumoured to be the meeting places of ‘persons of quality’ who wished to take part in socially perceived immoral acts, and the members were often involved in politics. Neither the activities nor membership of the club were easy to ascertain, for the clubs were rumoured to have distant ties to an elite society known only as The Order of the Second Circle…
    - A Dissertation on the Helvetilds of Southreach, penned in the year 1242 CE.

    Welcome to Session 6.1: How to Disappoint a Farmhouse and Alienate People

    The companions arrive in the Bay of Spears, approaching the town of Southreach, ostensibly the capital of the realm of the same name. It has been a journey of about six weeks since they left Ravnsalm, and they have spent the time recovering from their exertions. They have been completely resupplied out of Helga’s treasury and each have a number of nice warm outfits to ward off the cold northern winds. Interestingly enough, Harold's birthday passed on the voyage, quite uneventfully.

    “Here it is. Southreach.” – Harold, as the Tide Tremor glides into the quiet dock.

    I was asked here about the various animals the companions have picked up over their travels.


    Down in the hold, Toirneach and Amadeus are calm. By now, both are old hands at these sea voyages, and the creaking and confined spaces no longer worry them as such. Kel’Serrar sits down there too, a lantern providing him with just enough light to practice his woodwork.

    On the deck above, Aeva/Hawk sits on the mast, observing everything quietly, hoping that her family can be found. Below her, Breanna plays with Wolfgang, throwing a stick from port to starboard for the young marcwolf to chase and bring back to her. Harold stands by the ship’s wheel, expertly guiding the vessel with Bach standing vigilantly beside him. Xander sits nearby, ready to lend his considerable muscle and weight to the cause if anything physical needs doing. In the main cabin which she has commandeered, Maebh sits reading, a glowing ball of amber energy illuminating the text. Slumbering on the floor beside her, Crithtaluin, now the size of a large dog, makes slight rasping noises with every breath.

    Spoiler: Wolfgang, Bach and Crithtaluin:
    Show

    Wolfgang is a bit bigger than Bach as Breanna has just about spoiled the beast. He’s almost fat, but that extra bulk translates to more mass and power in combat. Both are getting pretty close to full size by this stage, standing four and a half feet at the shoulder. The way Breanna has raised Wolfgang however means that he is boisterous, a bit loud and full of energy, where Bach is more disciplined and quieter. Neither is exactly well-behaved though.

    Crithtaluin spends most of her time either sleeping or eating, likely due to the cold weather, which is not conducive to a reptile adapted to a tropical climate.


    Spoiler: Why They Are Here:
    Show

    We were introduced to Aeva of the Aett’kviss Nordur-Vatn back in Session 4.4(a): When the Bat-**** Insanity Hits the Fan. She was in Nordtarnet trying to follow rumours she had heard about her family, having been separated from them for several years.

    Back in Session 5.1: A Matter of Prophecy, Aeva got Harold to help her out, asking the Invarrians of Isenhjem, great travellers (and raiders) for word of her clan. Apparently, a good few Selkye have taken up a nomadic existence on the southern coasts of Southreach, and Aeva believes, or at least hopes, her family may be among them.


    It is early morning when the companions arrive, and the rising sun illuminates the massive stone castle on the eastern edge of the township, around which the town was built, well over a century ago. On the surface, Southreach looks peaceful but it is a façade.

    Setting out into the town, it is quickly apparent that, in what is becoming somewhat of a common theme, Southreach is being deserted by the populace.

    Spoiler: Map of Southreach
    Show
    INSERT MAP HERE


    Aeva:
    Aeva sits down on a rocky waterfront and enters a trance to communicate with the spirits in the area. They are just starting to awaken once more after a long and harsh winter, slowly bringing some life back to the land. One small water spirit approaches the druid and curls around the arm of her astral-form.

    ”What is happening around here little one?” – Aeva, in a gentle and friendly tone.

    The spirit explains that they are all frightened by a powerful daemonic entity which is focusing its power on a small area somewhere in the northern part of the town. It also shares its concerns regarding irregularities in the tides and how much it longs to be swept out to the greater ocean one day.

    Understandably, Aeva only shares the information about the powerful daemon with the rest of the party. Breanna agrees to go and find a map of the town somewhere so Aeva can point out exactly what part of the town to avoid/investigate.

    Xander:
    Xander sees a marketplace, with not a lot of merchants plying their wares. He finds a fruit merchant and buys two coppers worth of fruit. (Another recurring theme.)

    “What brings you to Southreach my friend?” – Fruit-merchant.

    “We are searching for the family of a friend. Rumours said they had been seen in the area. I would like to know though, why are people leaving?” – Xander, munching on a pear.

    “A few things. First of all, the business with Nordtarnet to the north. That bloody Dwergar won’t stop expanding his borders. The hysterics say his armies are moving south as we speak.” – Fruit-merchant, darkly.

    “The others should be pretty familiar with what happened in Nordtarnet…”
    “Yeah, yet another recurring theme actually. Everywhere you guys go, things go pretty badly.” – Yohan.
    “Well we did rescue one town.” – Sins.
    “You did? Which one was that?” – Sarcastically.
    “The one which is now probably in ruins since I said that.” – Sins, laughing.


    Xander spends the next few hours helping out around the docks, offering some muscle for hire in loading ships and shifting goods, earning a little coin.

    Harold:
    Harold takes his equipment and finds the town’s last blacksmith, a stocky and dirty Dwergar, and gets it all looked over, an excuse to engage in much the same kind of small-talk as Xander.

    “Two reasons. The first is because of that bastard up north. Haha, he wasn’t the bastard was he? That was his brother if I heard it right? Doesn’t matter, this one is a right prick and he’s attacking everyone he can get his grubby little hands on. He’s got some queer ideas regarding people who aren’t of Dwergar stock too, namely that they need to die. As you can imagine, most everyone in this town wants out. I’ll probably be alright though. I’m a dwarf, same as him, and I’ve got some skill with a hammer and forge. I might get forced to outfit his army, but that’s less work than relocating at my age.” – Dwergar blacksmith.

    “What did you think of Tremor?” – Harold.

    “Who?” – Blacksmith.

    “Tremor.” – Harold.

    “Who?” – Blacksmith.

    “Tremor.” – Dev.
    “Yeah I heard! The character doesn’t know who you’re talking about.”
    “He doesn’t know who Tremor is.” – Yohan, in a stage whisper.

    “So those rumours I tried to spread about Bain being the real bastard didn’t work.” – Dev, upset.
    “If they did spread, they might not have spread here. Or this guy might just not be that clued in.” – Ladyhawk.

    Spoiler: The Extent of the Rumours:
    Show

    Sadly for Harold, the rumours didn’t get too far on Unterguardt. Kabysholm, where Harold did the majority of his rumour mongering, is a bustling port-city. This is good. On the other hand, the majority of the town’s trade is done with places on the Norbayne landmass, where the resources Kabysholm produces can be sold at a high price. (Kabysholm’s main export, like many Northmann towns, is leather. As such, most Unterguardt towns and the like produce their own leather, restricting trade upon the landmass)

    The rumours did get a fair foothold within Kabysholm itself, especially as the city prepared itself for Bain’s imminent assault as the city’s rulers did their best to use the horrific nature of Bain’s rule as a rallying cry to the populace. Unfortunately, their open disavowal of Ironfist did not endear them to Bain when he captured the city, and most of the population was massacred as a warning to those who would try to stand against him.


    “I see. You mentioned a second reason people were leaving?” – Harold, fishing for more information.

    “Oh aye, the Helvetilds. They were thought to have gone extinct, if you can use the term for a club, but they’ve re-emerged now what with all the crap going on to the north. They say they’re daemon worshippers, boys who are looking for a bit of a thrill.” – Dargrim, the blacksmith.

    “What else do they say about them?” – Harold.

    “They practise blood magic and they go around wearing masks made from animal heads. Or so they say. Sounds pretty messy to me.” – Dargrim, rolling his eyes.

    “Thank you for your time.” – Harold, taking his gear and leaving.

    “Oh, the authorities are blaming them for some fires in the last few months. They’ve been ‘arson’ around! Get it!?” – Dargrim, laughing at his own brilliance.

    Harold smiles politely and walks away, groaning inwardly.

    Harold rejoins the other companions and they make their way to an inn for lunch, a cosy little establishment on the edge of the town’s main road. Maebh takes the horses into the inn’s stable, having left Crithtaluin safely asleep on the Tide Tremor. Wolfgang and Bach are left tied up outside the establishment, where they happily doze together, in the process preventing a few potential clients from entering. The companions take a table in the corner, struggling to fit Xander’s massive frame into the booth, despite the increased scale inherent in all Northmann manufacture.

    Harold and Aeva head to the bar to order food and drinks for the group, and Aeva strikes up a quick conversation as the burly, bearded Northmann pours the ale.

    “Other than myself, have any Selkye been seen in the area? Refugees or anything like that?” – Aeva, earnest.

    “Not for a little while now. Last Selkye I saw was a little family who headed down the coast to the fishing village of Breddvind. They wanted to build a new home I recall. Literally just a fifteen minute walk out the south-east gate lass.” – Gilvar, the friendly barkeep.

    “Do you recall what they looked like? How many of them were there?” – Aeva, desperate for information.

    “Ah short, and dark-haired, as your people tend to be. A man there was, and his wife, and a daughter. The daughter looked like you, and had one of those strange sea-dog things your people like to keep. And the man’s eyes, pale blue they were, just like yours.” – Gilvar, scratching his chin thoughtfully.

    Aeva leans over the bar and gives the massive man a hug, tears glistening in those pale blue eyes.

    “Thank you so much.” – Aeva, quietly.

    She and Harold return to the companions’ table, drinks in hand and share the news.

    “Everyone used to comment on how similar my sister and I looked, and she took our hafhund, Narta with her when we fled. She loved that dog. I’m sure it’s them. I can’t believe that now, after all this time I am so close.” – Aeva, happily to the others as they settle down for their meal.

    * * *

    During the time between landing in Southreach and meeting up again in the tavern, Kel’Serrar went and bought himself a light chain hauberk to wear under his jerkin, and he takes a couple of moments to go and put it on.

    Coming back downstairs, he is just in time to catch the end of another argument between Harold and most of the party. It has been a fair while since Harold has been able to properly relax and have a drink, and that is just how he would like to spend the rest of the day. The others though would prefer to investigate a few things, namely the presence in the keep, the actions of the Helvetilds and the whereabouts of Aeva’s family.

    “I will burn this place to the ground if you get drunk today.” – Maebh, hissing under her breath to Harold.

    “If you and Aeva go look for her family and Xander, Kel and Bree go looking for the Helvetilds or whatever, you don’t need me. I haven’t been able to properly sit and have a drink for ages now.” – Harold, already looking forward to another nice, cool flagon of ale.

    “Helga gave us plenty of alcohol when we left Ravnsalm. You’ve been drinking the entire trip over here.” – Breanna, quietly.

    “Disclaimer kids, don’t drink and drive. Don’t be like Harold.” – Dev, laughing.

    “Come on Harold, you should go with Maebh and Aeva to protect them if they run into trouble.” – Xander, cautious as always.

    “They’re going to go find Aeva’s family in a fishing village down the coast, not heading off to battle.” – Harold, dismissive.

    “Exactly, a fishing village down the coast. Do you honestly think anywhere near open water is safe now?” – Kel’Serrar, sitting down with a biting comment.

    “Fine, I’ll go.” – Harold.

    Breanna produces a finely drawn map of the town and lays it out on the table, allowing Aeva to mark down where she believes the spirits told her the daemon was exerting its influence. It appears to be right on the northern edge of the Craftsmen’s District, which is dominated by tanners.

    “Right, let’s finish lunch and get on with it.” – Breanna, cheerful.

    * * *

    Aeva, Harold and Maebh:
    The three companions head out the southern gate to the village of Breddvind, Bach trotting along happily behind them. It is only a short walk to the village, passing a couple of isolated hamlets on the way. One man drives a cart along the road, hauled by a shaggy ox and stinking of fish. Aeva smiles a greeting, but is ignored.

    They arrive in the village and see a few people going about their daily lives. One middle-aged Northmann woman sits on the porch of her house, repairing a large net and Aeva approaches her.

    “Hello there. Would you happen to know of any Selkye in the area?” – Aeva, cheerful.

    “Oh no. I am sorry…” – The woman, who then silently points across the village to the burnt out wreck of a house.

    “When did this happen?” – Aeva, now less happy.

    “About a week ago.” – The woman.

    Aeva shoots a dark glare at Harold, who has the good grace to look at least somewhat apologetic. Their sidetrack back to Ravnsalm likely cost them over a week.

    “Was anyone inside?” – Aeva, daring to hope.

    “One body was recovered. A young girl.” – The woman, sadly.

    Aeva bows her head.

    “Let’s go examine it closer Aeva. We might find something in the ruins.” – Maebh, placing a consoling hand on the Selkye’s shoulder. She takes Aeva over to what is left of the house, but Harold remains behind to question the woman further.

    “Did they have any enemies in the village?” – Harold, quietly.

    “No, definitely not. They were well liked, for all that they were not here for long. They seemed happy enough, and then one night we could hear these otherworldly noises, screams and roars coming from the house. We all locked up our doors and hid. The next morning the blaze was dying down and we were able to search the wreckage. No one looked too closely though.” – The woman, making a warding sign with her hand.

    “Why is that?” – Harold.

    “I don’t know what made those noises friend, but I will never forget them. It was altogether evil.” – The woman, who folds up her net and walks into her house, the door swinging shut behind her.

    * * *

    Xander:
    Xander, Breanna and Kel’Serrar split up to try and find some more information. They have assumed that the daemonic presence Aeva was able to discover in the northern part of the town must be connected to the Helvetilds, and so decide that they should do what they can to find out about both.

    They split up for a few hours, wandering around the area trying to find something, anything at all.

    Xander treads warily down an alleyway, and has some luck. Before him, on the ground lies a dusty brass amulet, the chain broken. Engraved upon it is a rather daemonic look goat’s head sigil. Naturally, Xander’s first reaction is to pick it up.

    “Okay, let’s get a Willpower Check here then.”
    “Aaaaaaah ****.” – Yohan, who takes his dice out of their bag.
    Dev starts laughing.
    “What is your Willpower?” – Ladyhawk, concerned.
    “28…” – Yohan, who is already preparing for failure.
    “I believe. You will succeed.” – Delphi.
    “That’s a no.” – Yohan, upon rolling a 57.
    “Yeah, not good.” – LD.
    “Do I feel that this thing is going to do bad things to me?” – Yohan.
    “It will do very bad things to you, yes.”
    “Bad touch indeed.” – Delphi.
    “So Luck Point yeah? ****!” – Yohan, re-rolling and then failing again.
    “Can he spend 2 Luck Points and, just, pass?” – Dev.
    “Yeah, no.”
    “He can use a Luck Point and re-roll though right?” – Ladyhawk.
    “He just did.”
    “Oh crap. He can do it again though right? Pretty sure you’ve let me before.” – Ladyhawk.
    “I may have, but that would have been very rare. As a rule, you can’t re-roll a re-roll unless expressly stated otherwise.”
    “What about if I spend another 2 Luck Points to re-roll again?” – Yohan.

    As this is what the Luck Point system is all about, providing almost a ‘barter’ between the GM and the players, I was happy to do that. Seemed fair.


    As soon as Xander picks the amulet up he feels it start to burn in his hand and there is a slight pushing at the corner of his mind.

    “Nah, **** that.” – Xander, throwing the amulet down on the ground once more. It stands on its edge where it lands.

    He leaves it on the ground, but takes a mental note of where he left it so he can bring Breanna back later.

    “Can I just ask what would have happened to him there?” – Ladyhawk, concerned.
    “He would have been possessed by a powerful daemon.
    “Oh ****.” – Ladyhawk.
    “Yeah, there’s a good reason I threw it away from me.” – Yohan.
    “We would have had to put you down somehow…” – Aeva, thoughtful.

    They then spend a fair bit of time discussing the best way to take Xander down.


    Breanna:
    Being the hardened and unscrupulous criminal she is, Breanna spent most of the afternoon breaking and entering peoples’ houses and rifling through their personal belongings. She was generally unsuccessful when it came to finding any information regarding daemons or the Helvetilds, but she was able to line her pockets with some loose change along the way.

    After Harold shared what he found out about the Helvetilds, Breanna did her best to confine her searching to the houses and rooms of well-off young men, and eventually this tactic paid off. Under the pillow of one young man’s bed she found a letter, the wax seal broken, but clearly depicting a goat’s head wreathed in flames.

    Quote Originally Posted by Formal Invitation from the Helvetilds
    Dear Master Bogrufsson,

    Your interest in joining the esteemed Helvetilds, or the Order of the Second Circle has been noted by several initiates and so we extend this formal invitation to attend the ceremony to be held on the Fifthday of Tenthmonth at the Lysirkel Estate at midnight.

    You are expected to maintain a calm and respectful manner while engaged in activities with the Order. Please meet with the two initiates at the north gate of the town at a quarter-to the hour. They will be expecting you.

    We look forward to your presence.
    Breanna takes the letter, a small pouch of coins hidden under a loose floorboard, and flits out the window and back to the rooftops.

    Kel’Serrar:
    The Danann finds somewhere quiet to attune himself to his surroundings, and is almost overloaded with the feedback his senses receives. He can feel the presence of everything, the couple of hundred people who haven’t left Southreach yet, his companions, the horde of rats infesting the sewers beneath the town, even, at the very edges of his consciousness, the people in Breddvind to the south, and a small wolf-pack in the marshland to the north.

    And a presence, not really alive but very powerful which dwells in the keep….

    That place Aeva pointed out on the map earlier seems to be just about bereft of creatures, suggesting that they have fled, or they avoid the place now that the daemon has manifested there.

    * * *

    Aeva, Maebh and Breanna:
    Aeva sits down at the edge of the foundations of the house and enters a trance. There are a handful of seelie spirits nearby, all of them busily trying to return some life to the land after winter, and Aeva is able to get some information from them.

    The spirits share that the people who lived in the house were very friendly with them, and that they fled to the west one night before the fire. They aren’t able to share much more than that, but Aeva asks them to pass word on to them. The spirits are happy to try, but can’t guarantee it will work, as spirits are usually confined to an area. With that said, they may be able to try and pass a message along, and hope it doesn’t get too distorted by the time it reaches its destination.

    ”Brilliant. Thank you my friends. Please tell them Aeva is coming.” – Aeva, daring to hope that they may still be alive.

    Fair bit of concern regarding how this could go horribly wrong here. They’re basically playing Chinese Whispers with spirits.

    ”Was the little one able to escape?” – Aeva, hoping that the girl found in the wreckage may not have been her sister.

    She gets conflicting answers. Some spirits inform her that the little one left with the others, but others tell her that she was unable to escape the burning.

    Harold and Maebh inspect the ruins of the house and Harold is able to find an amulet in the ashes, carved from nahvalur tusk into the shape of a stylised crescent moon. The very same amulet that Aeva herself wears around her neck. Harold hands the jewellery to Aeva and she accepts it wordlessly.

    Asking around the village, it seems that everyone is blaming the arson on the Helvetilds. It is their way after all. As the Selkye were newcomers, the authorities have not exactly done much about it, much to Aeva’s disgust.

    Spoiler: Delphi, squid, ears and God knows what else:
    Show

    We had a bit of a tangent here when Delphi expressed a desire to interrogate people by turning parts of them into animals. Sins took it one step further.

    “Your head is now a squid. Now that you can’t breathe and you know that I can do this whenever I like, I’m going to turn you back and you will tell me what I need to know. If you don’t, you go squid again.” – Sins.

    Which of course got me thinking, how well do squid hear? Do they even have ears?

    It turns out they have primitive ear-like structures called statocysts, which can pick up vibrations in water. They can only hear vibrations ranging up to 500Hz though, which makes it about a quarter as sensitive as ours.

    Having done that research, it strikes me that this knowledge will probably never aid me in later life, but hey, the more you know right?

    “So with that in mind, it probably wouldn’t make for an effective interrogation technique.”
    “I can just turn them back and ask the questions.” – Sins.
    “Why not just waterboard them or something like that? It’s the same thing essentially.” – Yohan.
    “Yeah, but the body-horror of casting Head-to-Squid is something you don’t get with waterboarding.”
    “Except then you get that one weird guy who is just like, ‘I love it,’ and the whole thing goes out the window.” – Yohan, laughing.

    And then it got really weird.

    “Guys, can we stop the torture conversation? I draw the line at torture generally.” – Dev, to laughter.
    “You do not!” – Yohan and I simultaneously.
    “I have drawn the line.” – Dev.
    “You have not!” – Yohan, laughing.
    “How many times have you stopped Aeva from removing someone’s pants?” – Sins, bringing up the least of Harold’s crimes.
    “That’s not torture, that’s embarrassment and ultimately harmless.” – Dev, forgetting that usually everyone they do that to ends up dead.
    “If you’re observing it, you’re condoning it and that is pretty torturous.” – Yohan.

    “Session 2.1. You guys brought a captive back to Rangard and then gleefully observed his torture and death.”
    “I did not gleefully watch-“ – Dev, cut off.
    “You certainly did. You put bets on him!”
    “Oh yeah, that’s right. I did.” – Dev, laughing.


    “Aeva, I think if we are going to find out what happened to your family and where they went, we need to find these Helvetilds.” – Maebh, gently.

    * * *

    It is early evening when the companions meet up once more in the tavern, the Old Speckled Hen, and discuss what they have learnt.

    “Should we wait for Breanna?” – Harold, already into his third ale for the evening. The stocky Leathe has not appeared yet.

    “No, she should be here any minute. What did we find?” – Maebh, taking charge.

    “Well that place Aeva told us about near the Craftsmen District is dead. Nothing living wants to go there. There’s also something within the keep. One entity, I can’t tell if it is alive or not, but it radiates power.” – Kel’Serrar.

    “I found an amulet on the ground not far from there too. It tried to attack me when I picked it up, so I left it behind. I don’t know enough about magic to say any more than that.” – Xander, still a little shaken by the event.

    “I’d like to check that out.” – Maebh, quickly.

    Just then, Breanna strolls in, Wolfgang trotting happily behind her. The Leathe sits down with a slight jangling of coins and throws the letter she procured on the table.

    “We have an invitation to a private party. Can we go?” – Breanna, grinning.

    “Why is it always midnight?” – Harold, reading the note.

    “Full moon tonight too.” – Aeva, quietly.

    “Typical.” – Harold, grumbling.

    * * *

    Back soon.
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2017-01-11 at 01:49 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  14. - Top - End - #194
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    And we are back!

    There are still quite a few hours until the midnight meeting, so the companions eat a quick dinner at the Old Speckled Hen and then head out to find Xander’s medallion, both Maebh and Breanna keen to have a look at it.

    Xander is able to find the medallion again, and in the fading light, the companions cluster around it. Maebh and Breanna both bend down to examine it, careful not to touch the damned thing. Aeva meanwhile shies away as she can feel the spirits in the area warning her of the danger, screaming at her to get away from it.

    All Maebh can determine is that the thing is definitely of Black Magic origin and that there is a horribly malevolent presence held within it.

    Breanna though has far more luck. Immediately she can tell there is a daemonic entity bound within it. The daemons she drains of power are reasonably weak, ‘snaglings’ if you will. Occasionally she will attempt to draw in and drain a daemon of greater power, and that has backfired on her in the past. The thing within this medallion is at least five times more powerful than those. Whatever, or whoever, managed to force this entity into this receptacle must have been extraordinarily powerful or very, very lucky.

    Breanna mainly tries to call upon Level 1 Daemons. Occasionally she will go after Level 2’s, but this is pretty rare. This entity is the equivalent of Level 10.

    “Can daemons manifest in the material plane?” – Yohan.
    “Yes they can, but they need to be brought into it.” – Sins.
    “So if it is forced out of the amulet it will?” – Yohan.
    “Probably be very angry.”


    Aeva puts together a little carry-bag almost out of rope and a tarp from Xander’s kit and they are able to pick the amulet up. She can feel the presence within it is starting to get irate at being disturbed and the spirits are still telling her to drop it and run, but she steadies her mind and keep hold of it.

    “Can we use the tarp as an improvised weapon?” – Sins.
    “And then we need to kill the now-possessed enemy…” – Ladyhawk, pointing out the obvious flaw.

    “I wonder, will my poisoned bolts work on a possessed enemy?” – LD.
    “Poison bolts?” – Dev.
    “For my crossbow. I’ve got half of them poisoned for damage and the other half poisoned to sedate.” – LD.
    “But do you have any poisoned to seduce?” – Yohan.
    “What?” – LD, laughing.
    “Yeah I don’t know what that was about. I’ve got an alchemist character in another campaign and he uses pheromones to screw with people. I still don’t know what it was about though.” – Yohan, to more confused laughter.
    “To answer your question LD, yes the bolts will work on the possessed enemy. Can’t guarantee just what effect they may have though.”


    They still have a few hours before midnight, but decide to try and get an advantage on their enemies and scout the place out beforehand. They leave Southreach proper and approach the Lysirkel Estate as stealthily as possible. The hamlet appears to be deserted and possibly has been for some time, judging by the state of the iron gate across the path, propped open by the unruly undergrowth. Harold and Breanna briefly check out the dwelling’s interior and can see that whoever lived here did not have to leave in a hurry, but packed everything up and left at their own pace. Their departure was probably voluntary, and several months ago at least.

    Any livestock they would have kept in the pens outside are gone, either taken by the inhabitants, turned loose or sold.

    Aeva can tell that the handful of spirits in the area are apprehensive about what is to happen…

    For Breanna, it is almost as if the air itself is crackling with darkness…

    But it is Maebh who is most apprehensive. She knows a major magical event causes the equivalent of ripples in the material around it, like throwing a stone into water. The ripples that stone produces spread in the water both before and after the point of impact, and so it is too with magic. She can feel a dull vibration in the ground, the faint smell of ozone in the air, a feeling of wrongness all around. Magical shockwaves. Something big is about to happen and the companions are going to be caught in the middle of it.

    The companions spend a fair bit of time setting up in some kind of formation around the hamlet. Kel’Serrar makes himself and Xander invisible and alters Harold’s and Maebh’s features to appear like young Northmenn. Breanna cloaks herself in shadow and Aeva takes her hawk form and flies to the top of a nearby tree, depositing the bag with the medallion in it on a branch.

    Kel’Serrar enters a trance once more and attunes himself to his environment, hidden in some long grass and guarded by both Xander and Harold. He can sense some animals around, birds in the trees, some rabbits and the like, but over time they start to vacate the area. Something seems to have spooked them.

    Far to the north, a wolf pack howls up at the moon.

    “So you’re saying that cute little bunnies can feel black magic, bad stuff?” – Delphi.
    “Yes. They can.”
    “How long before they start to throw fireballs?” – Delphi.
    “They can sense it, not use it.” – Laughing.
    “So far that’s been a recurring theme actually. The wildlife in the area has known about bad **** happening before we did.” – Ladyhawk.
    “It’s primal instinct. People are just bad at it.” – Yohan.

    I would have liked to have heard what they were planning here, but unfortunately I just got Yohan’s anecdotes regarding his colour-blindness and he and Sins discussing Hearthstone tactics.


    It is almost an hour until midnight when a single figure is seen wandering up the path from the south. He is an Invarrian, quite young and lightly built. He carries a dagger at his belt and a large sack over his back, dripping a dark liquid behind him. He doesn’t seem wary of anything, and the companions allow him to walk through the gate, up to the house and enter unmolested and unaware of their presence.

    Some minutes pass and there a crash from inside the dwelling and a startled curse.

    To Kel’Serrar’s enhanced senses the shift in the air is palpable. All of sudden the air around the house gets very, very hot and for only a split second there’s an immensely powerful entity present inside.

    As soon as he hears the curse, Xander starts moving towards the door, alert for any danger, joined pretty swiftly by Breanna. Aeva takes flight too and perches on the windowsill, looking inside. The Invarrian youth is standing before a huge round table, immobile as a gigantic flaming entity forces itself down his throat.

    ”The game is on everyone. He’s done something bad touch. Looks like he is being possessed by fire.” – Aeva’s Whispering Wind to the companions. Her nose starts to bleed as she casts it, but it is only momentary discomfort.

    As soon as they hear Aeva’s message, the companions start to ready themselves. Taking up her spear, Maebh moves up, taking cover behind the fence of one of the livestock pens. She’s wary of disturbing the entity in the middle of the possession as it might view her as a more appealing target. Despite that, she does start to prepare some kind of casting. Kel’Serrar does likewise in his own manner, taking an arrow and nocking it.

    Xander focuses and manifests an aura soft golden light around each of the companions, except Kel’Serrar, who would prefer to remain invisible. Xander’s own invisibility is dispelled by his casting.

    The window before Aeva shatters, but she is able to avoid the storm of glass which whips out. She swoops back down and looks inside, seeing that the youth has disappeared and the table is charred and smoking. The air smells very strongly of smoke and ozone. Aeva/Hawk flies back to Maebh, landing on her shoulder.

    “He’s not there anymore. I lost track.” – Aeva, panicked.

    Harold turns around and notices with growing dread that the iron gate they walked through to get in is glowing cherry-red with heat. Slowly, the bars making up the fence levitate out of the ground and with a crack, shoot out at Xander and Maebh, leaving flashes of red in the air. Maebh is clipped by one of the bars and snarls at the burn across her shoulder, but Xander merely turns and accepts to projectiles with his shield, deflecting them into the house.
    “I am wall.” – Yohan.
    Xander focuses once more, this time on increasing his magical armour even further.

    Kel’Serrar cannot see anything inside the house, but he knows there is something there and so he prepares an enchantment of accuracy on his arrow and lets it fly. The grey-fletched missile swings through the air in flight, disappearing behind the wall.

    Harold has been keeping a lookout on the road, and now can see three more figures approaching. He runs quickly to Kel’Serrar and nudges the slightly built ranger in the ribs.

    “Three people coming up the road.” – Harold, whispering intently.

    “You take care of them then.” – Kel’Serrar.

    I ask for a Perception Check from everyone and then a Willpower Check from everyone but Harold.

    None of the companions can see inside, but from where they are it sounds as if there’s something throwing a tantrum in there. Things are being hurled around and hitting the walls, from pots to furniture. The house itself is starting to creak and the air itself is getting ever warmer.

    Maebh’s body crackles with power as she cloaks herself in golden lightning, and then she manifests a glowing disc of aethyric energy in front of her, hoping to protect herself from those burning iron bars. Aeva/Hawk springs off Maebh’s shoulder and lands on one of Xander’s horns, and drops an arcane snare inside the house.

    And then the house explodes.

    I ask for Agility Checks from Aeva, Xander and Breanna.
    “I’m not going to make that. Can I plant my shield and just try to take the brunt of it? My Agility is like 16. Let’s be honest, he’s not even going to try and dodge.” – Yohan.
    “I have +30 to Dodge with Skill bonuses and Talents and I rolled a 1.” – LD, demonstrating the breadth of difference we have.
    “What did you need to roll under to pass?” – Dev.
    “Agility 56, +30 bonuses, I needed an 86 or under to pass.” – LD.
    “But she could have 10 in Agility and still pass. ****ing Dice Jesus.”


    Aeva is able to flutter up and away from the blast and is only slightly singed, some tail feathers smouldering in the night air. Breanna is able to avoid the blast entirely with her preternatural agility. Xander on the other hand grits his teeth, plants his shield and holds steady as the fire billows around him. He roars in pain as the fur on his arms and face is singed but he refuses to yield and eventually the flaming gale dies down.

    The entire front of the house, and most of the floor of the second storey, has blown away, revealing a figure within, approximately ten feet tall. The head of the figure, if you could call it such, is reminiscent of a massive horned skull. The ‘body’ of the beast is made up of furniture and parts of the wall, feeding the infernal flames wreathing it, almost a parody of armour.

    “Are we fighting a house golem?” – Sins.
    “Kind of. A big, flaming house golem.”
    “Still not the worst golem I have fought.” – Sins.

    While Yohan decides what exactly he would like to do here, Sins starts going through his own options, and then finds one he really likes.

    “Hmm, that might be cool.” – Sins.
    “What is it?” – Dev.
    “Cruel Disappointment. I could cast Cruel Disappointment on an entire house.” – Sins. Surprise surprise, right?
    “Look at PG’s face!” – LD, noticing my confused expression.
    “I’ll be honest, I’m not entirely sure how to even play that, but hey, we can give it a go!”


    Xander sees the beast and feels something he hasn’t felt properly in quite a while, just the very first onset of fear, not so much for himself, but for the situation his new friends have found themselves in. Recognising the very real danger, he pulls out yet another magical trick, reinforcing their resolve and hardening their flesh before striding up to the flaming creature shield first, hammer gripped tightly.

    Xander casts Last Gasp, which prevents him and his allies from dropping beneath 1HP for a whole turn. It burns a fair bit of Soulfire, and is really of limited use, but if you think you might get hit with a one-shot kill, it can save some lives.

    “Okay, Sins, you’re up.”
    “Cruel Disappointment on the house. And, I cast it.” – Sins, rolling and succeeding.
    “I really don’t know how…” – Rolling the Willpower Check to resist and failing horribly. I just dissolve into laughter. I can hear LD screaming for no apparent reason in the recording.
    “I think after this I need to retire Kel. I will never be able to top this.” – Sins, laughing.


    The three Helvetilds coming up the road approach Harold, who still looks like a young man.

    “What happened to the house!?” – The lead Helvetild, who can’t see the figure inside, only the inferno.

    Dev gets a bit weird here. He says something like, “I am sooooo high, I have no idea bruh?” in what was, quite possibly, the most cringe-worthy impersonation of a stoned teenager I have ever seen or heard, before bursting into hysterical laughter, along with most everyone else.
    “Roll that Charm Check Dev.” – Sins.
    The bastard rolls a 03, which is something like 7 degrees of success for Harold.
    “Today is a good day for the party, but the worst possible day for PG. I’ve made the house lose the will to live, but Dev did one better. Dev actually made the campaign lose the will to live.” – Sins.


    “I am so high, I have no idea.” – Harold, actually able to pass himself off as under the influence of some narcotic.

    “So am I!” – One of the Helvetilds at the rear, a young boy with sandy hair under his hood. The other two don’t share the other’s enthusiasm.

    “The bloody house is on fire! And what the **** is that!?” – Lead Helvetild, who seems older than the others they have seen.

    He is, of course, referring to the gigantic figure which has just reach a flaming wooden hand out towards Xander and attempted to crush the Feartarbh, who rocks under the blow, grimacing under his shield.

    “It probably looks like Heaven vs Hell in that house.” – Yohan, musing.
    “Kind of, except in this case, Heaven also looks like a massive horned beast.”

    “Okay Delphi, you’re up.”
    “I’m going to try and Snare the mother****er and then Illusory Pit the mother****er.” – Delphi.
    “This poor house is going to be driven insane. First it is having an existential crisis, so it just thinks it is a normal house, then it starts falling. And it’s just going to be like, ‘What is everything?’ I’m actually legitimately feeling sorry for this daemon. All it wanted to do was help a few kids destroy the world and we are breaking its mind.” – Yohan.
    “Wait a minute, so if the house fails the roll to resist the Snare, due to Cruel Disappointment, it is going to think it succeeded… So, how does that work?” – Sins.
    “See this is where I got stuck earlier when you said you wanted to Disappoint it earlier. Like dude, it’s a house. What is it going to do? ‘They sold me. They don’t want me anymore.’ I don’t know!” – To the ‘aww’s’ of disappointment from Ladyhawk and LD.
    “See that is depressed house. Disappointed house would just be bemoaning not getting the kitchen wall repainted.” – Sins.


    Aeva throws yet another Snare down, but if it has any effect she cannot tell.

    Breanna thinks about it and decides to try something. She focuses and tries to harness some of the obviously daemonic entity’s power for herself. It roars in recognition at what she is doing and starts to stride toward her.

    “I’m going to try and drain it.” – LD.
    “Okay, roll over its Willpower. Good luck, it’s really high.”
    “Just some casual boasting there.” – Ladyhawk.
    “Not boasting at all. A warning, rather.”
    “94!” – LD, triumphant.


    The creature shrinks in size by about half a foot after Breanna’s mental attack, and the fires around it lose a degree of intensity. Now of course, it is the Leathe it sees as the main threat and it moves past Xander, intending to hit the little assassin.

    Harold mutters a quick incantation and a couple of molten silver arrows fly out of the blade of his sabre, killing the lead Helvetild immediately. He then beats the other two unconscious and hides the bodies in the undergrowth.

    After using the Silver Arrow Rune Tremor inscribed upon his sabre many moons ago, Dev was going to have Harold kill all three of the Helvetilds.
    “Dev, are you killing children again?” – LD.
    “Yeah.” – Dev, unrepentant.
    “No! Come on Dev! Don’t do that, I need to ask them if they know anything about my parents.” – Delphi.
    “They’re kids. People can be helped. Aren’t you supposed to be a ‘good’ character?” – Yohan, who obviously doesn’t know Harold that well. He then makes a sound which honestly sounded a little bit like he was breaking internally.
    “Okay fine, I want to use Deathsword to knock them out.” – Dev.
    “Different use of the Deathsword ability, but okay…”
    “Calm down there mate.” – Dev, jokingly to Yohan.
    “Argh! I just don’t get how you thought you were Chaotic Good?” – Yohan.
    “Yeah in hindsight, not sure why I thought that either…” – Dev, thoughtful.

    This conversation continued a little longer as Dev rolled Damage.
    “These kids are probably not all evil. A few of them might be daemon worshippers, but I don’t think all of them are.” – Yohan.
    “They’re just doing it to be edgy. Cause it’s the cool thing to do.” – Ladyhawk, nodding in agreement.
    “It’s like a cult of ‘dab-ers’ and you’re killing them.” – LD.
    “Ah, even I would probably kill a cult of dab-ers though. No offence intended. Anyway, point is, that kid you just killed might have just been part of the club cause it was the cool thing to do, and now you have to go knock on his mother’s door and tell her what happened here.” – Yohan.
    “Haha, no I won’t.” – Dev, laughing.
    “Yes, you will. I will drag you.” – Yohan, also laughing. I am pretty sure they were just joking about this.


    Maebh smashes the creature with a torrent of magical water, causing it to roar in pain and stagger back a few steps, steam billowing from its ephemeral form. It shrinks in size again, and is now about same size as Xander. Hurt and disoriented by Kel’Serrar’s curse, it is unable to retaliate, though it believes it has blasted them with a roiling blast of flame.

    Xander smashes into the creature shield first, trying to get its attention again. His warhammer smashes into the wooden board the daemon is using as a chestplate and cracks a sizeable hole in it, which liquid fire spews out of, burning the Feartarbh’s arm.

    Seeing the opening Xander has made, Kel’Serrar enchants another arrow and looses it directly at the daemon’s heart. 52 Damage here from Kel’Serrar, which is probably the highest damage we’ve had on a single target.

    Breanna tries to siphon some of the daemon’s power again, but is unsuccessful. She feels something inside her overload and break as the power drains away.
    LD failed her opposed Willpower Check by a lot and then ended up losing a Magic Level for five days.

    Maebh hurls another blast of water at it, hurting it badly. The creature drops to its knees and shrinks again in a burst of steam, roaring in pain. Hunched over, it looks up at Maebh, infernal flames billowing from the eyesockets of the skull forming its head. Flames blast forth from its mouth, but Maebh’s arcane shielding holds strong and Breana is able to dodge out of the way again, hissing in pain at the minor burns on her tail.

    “Creature! Are you the one burning the houses down!?” – Aeva, trying to get some kind of answer from the daemon.

    It stops roaring fire and then screams in agony and rage.

    “RELEASE ME AND I WILL TELL YOU EVERYTHING YOU WISH!” – A raging bellow from the daemon which sounds like fire and destruction unleashed over a millennia.

    “You’re going to trust a daemon?” – Dev.
    “Do we have anyone who could potentially bind it?” – Delphi, who is doing no such thing.
    “Maybe Breanna.” – Ladyhawk.
    “Just a warning, this thing was approximately Level 10 and she usually deals with Level 1’s and struggles with Level 2’s.”
    “And I’m now Magic Level 1 for five days. So that’s a no.” – LD.


    “Careful! It’s going to try and take someone!” – Breanna, who has a split second to warn the others to shield their minds.

    Xander stops, eyes wide and starts to shake violently where he stands. The creature disappears, the fire goes out and all the burnt furniture and wooden boards, the skull, everything which made up its body falls to the floor, charred and ruined or even in ashes. The golden auras Xander willed into being flicker and fail.

    Xander stops shaking.

    Yohan burnt a heap of Luck Points from the entire party to try and resist the possession, but failed three times.

    Xander’s mind is burning, and he is trapped within it.

    The daemon sits there, deep in his mind, pulling the strings to control the Feartarbh’s body like a puppet. Bars of red-hot iron and pain manifest around him, confining him, burning him even as he rails against the entity which has captured him.

    “I AM KHUBUDEYN AND YOU ARE MINE!” – Khubudeyn, the daemonic entity which has taken Xander over.


    Xander turns to the party, eyes blazing with infernal flame.

    “YOU’RE ALL GOING TO DIE!” – Xander, a blazing inferno roaring in voice. The possessed Feartarbh drops his shield and warhammer and draws the massive claymore on his back, and the blade bursts into dark flames.

    Kel’Serrar tries to enchant an arrow with unnatural accuracy, but is obviously thrown off a little by the events of the night and loses control over the casting. Grimacing as a cold wind blows through the area, Kel’Serrar fights off the headache from the arcane backlash and looses one of his three armour-piercing bodkins straight at Xander’s heart. The arrow hits home and rips straight through the Feartarbh’s heavy armour, almost dropping him.

    We’ve finally met something Kel can’t drop in one hit. He did do 22 Damage with a single shot, and that’s after the 8 negated by Xander’s Toughness.

    Locked in the confines of his own mind, Xander can’t help but lose himself in the ancestral rage of his bloodline. He smashes his fists against the mental cage the daemon has trapped him in and roars his anger and frustration to the daemon’s mocking laughter.

    “No! I can save him! Don’t kill him!” – Maebh, brain working overtime to try and contain this situation.

    “Feel free to do so. I’m going to keep shooting him until he goes down though.” – Kel’Serrar, calling back and nocking another arrow.

    “So what’s your plan Ladyhawk? Cause I’m not that keen on dying.” – Yohan.
    “I’m thinking Remove Curse, and if I pump it full of Soulfire it might be enough to just rip the daemon out.” – Ladyhawk.
    “Will that work?” – Yohan.
    “Sounds painful.” – LD.
    “Yep, it can definitely work, and yes, it will probably hurt.”
    “I’ve got a fair bit of the daemon’s own power I’ve drained from it. I can Channel that to you Ladyhawk.” – LD.
    “Problem is, I’ve got to get up close and grab him cause the spell is on touch.” – Ladyhawk, who obviously doesn’t want to get too close to Xander and his now flaming claymore.
    “I’ve got sedation bolts. Might work.” – LD.


    Breanna darts forward, knowing that her little handcrossbow is not going to even get close to getting through Xander’s heavy plate armour, and so she darts forward, ducking under the possessed Feartarbh’s swing and flinging herself up and into her saddle. From point-blank range she pulls the trigger and watches the little bolt sink into the slab of muscle that is Xander’s neck.

    Harold leaves the gate and starts sprinting towards Xander, blades in hand. He knows he is unlikely to get close enough, but figures he is more likely to be able to withstand a blow than any of the others.

    “I am sick of daemons! Come attack me creature!” – Harold, brandishing the Gilded Sword.

    The beast stops laughing and contemplates Harold, and Xander can see that its attention is drawn by the golden blade the Invarrian holds.

    “That, would be a worthy prize…” – Khubudeyn, musing to itself.


    Listening to this was quite interesting, as Yohan did his best to come up with something the party could do to put Xander down without Maebh using any Soulfire.

    Aeva/Hawk pumps herself full of arcane energy and increases her size by an order of magnitude, now almost the size of a Warden Eagle with a nine foot wingspan and swoops down, grasping Breanna in her talons and pulling her clear of the rampaging daemon/Xander.

    Xander forces the bars of the cage open and charges Khubudeyn, wrestling with the daemon for control of his body. For a moment, he is himself again, burned and bloodied, but he knows that it is only momentarily. He has only a few seconds.

    Xander hurls his claymore as far as he can away from himself and then drops to his knees, hoping his companions will be able to kill him before he kills them.

    And Kel’Serrar looses, an arrow flashing into Xander’s hip, punching through the Feartarbh’s armour, this time just a normal arrow.

    “Aeva! Fly me down! I need to be able to touch him!” – Breanna, to Aeva/Hawk, who turns and swoops down again.

    Breanna holds a furry hand out and for split second her hand brushes over the back of Xander’s head. The moment she feels contact, she pours all the magic she can into him, trying to force him into a magical coma.

    Because Xander was able to suppress the daemon, this was resolved against Xander’s Willpower and he failed. Kuhbudeyn is now trapped inside Xander’s unconscious body.

    “WHAT IS THIS!?” – Kuhbudeyn, throwing Xander’s consciousness away and raging against the forced lethargy Breanna has inflicted upon them.

    Xander smiles tiredly, battered in the depths of his mind, and is trapped once more in a cage of red-hot iron.


    Harold moves up with Maebh, ready to pull her away if Xander stirs. The Danann rests a slender hand on the Feartarbh’s head and prepares to receive Soulfire from Aeva, Breanna and what little Kel’Serrar has left.

    Maebh burns more than 70 Soulfire to try and get enough bonuses to pull Kuhbudeyn out of Xander.

    “AAAAAAARRRRRRRRGGGGHHHHH!!!!!” – Kuhbudeyn, screaming as Maebh starts to exert her inexorable will over it. All Xander can do is watch and roar in pain as the daemon is forcefully ripped from his mind. It tries to grab hold of him as she pull it loose, and he can feel its claws tearing his consciousness into shreds.

    “Kel, throw me your coin!” – Breanna, who has just been set down by Aeva.

    The ranger pulls out one of the Three Coins and hurls it to the Leathe, who pulls her own out and then fishes around in Maebh’s pack to get hers too. Now with all of the coins, Breanna latches onto the dark tendrils and tries to split the daemon across them. The coins in her hands are starting to glow and burn with power.

    Harold grabs Maebh around the waist and hurls her away, blades still held to threaten Xander just in case he makes a move. At the moment though, the Feartarbh is just shaking and convulsing on the ground.

    Success. LD is able to completely bind Kuhbudeyn in the coins.

    “Did it work Bree?” – Kel’Serrar, who has moved up to join the other companions near the prone Feartarbh.

    “I’m sorry?” – Breanna, still panting.

    “Did it work? Can I start patching him up?” – Kel’Serrar, still with arrow on his bowstring.

    Wordlessly, Breanna nods. The coins in her hands burn hot and then slowly, start to cool. And then, thirty seconds later, a collective roaring groan can be heard, faintly emanating from the coins.

    Kel’s Cruel Disappointment ended here.

    Aeva, Maebh and Kel set to trying to patch up the unconscious Xander, and are able to remove the arrows and staunch the bleeding, but it is some time before the Feartarbh awakens from his dark dreams.

    Xander cops an Insanity with six degrees of failure on the Willpower Check.

    “I’m glad we didn’t kill you.” – Ladyhawk, with a hand on Yohan’s shoulder.


    Maebh finds a cart in the barn, and Harold and Kel’Serrar replace the broken wheel with only a little bit of swearing. With a lot of straining, the companions struggle to bundle Xander and the two unconscious Helvetilds into the cart and Aeva takes the form of a seilbak to draw it back to the town. They leave Lysirkel Estate in flames behind them.

    And we left it there…

    The Wrap-Up:
    So the next session stays in Southreach, trying to find some information about Aeva’s family and to determine what this presence is in Southreach’s keep.

    We still have Session 6.2 to come, and Session 6.3 is being played this Sunday.

    Cheers,
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2017-01-08 at 09:43 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  15. - Top - End - #195
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Session 6.2: There and Back Again

    ”...Whatever those companions found in that keep, it was not of this world. Flesh rotted and simply died under its touch. Flames would gutter and die. It was as if all life simply suffocated in its presence. How they managed to kill the thing, no one knows…
    - From the records of the Southreach guardhouse on the events of the 30th Day of Secondmonth, the year 1649 of the Common Era.

    Welcome to Session 6.2: There and Back Again.

    The companions head back to Southreach and Xander wakes up along the way, insisting on walking. The guards at the north gate try to stop them, but one look at Xander is enough to make them reconsider. The evil amulet is rolled up tightly in the tarp-bag Aeva manufactured for it, and lies in the bottom of the cart.

    They all go and find beds, except Harold, who sits up in the common room of the Old Speckled Hen, drinking himself into a stupor, and Aeva who awakens the unconscious Helvetilds in the cart first and interrogates them, but they aren’t able to give her any important information.

    None of the companions know what happened to the captured youths, and none of them dare to ask…

    * * *

    The next morning the weather has made a turn for the worse, grey and overcast with a promise of cold rain in the clouds above. The companions gather at their table in the Old Speckled Hen, tucking into a breakfast. Xander is much the worse for wear, various injuries packed with bandages and concoctions to try and ward away infection. Despite this he is putting away a prodigious amount of food with what appears to be pained enthusiasm.

    Harold is eating far less, having drunk far too much the night previous.

    “As much as I want to help you find your family Aeva, I think this thing Kel’s told us about in the keep is too important to leave behind us.” – Xander, breaking the bad news to the disappointed Selkye.

    “With that in mind, I think this presence in the Craftsmen DistrictAeva told us about may be more important again.” – Maebh, concerned.

    “That’s a good point.” – Xander, head in his hands.

    “After all that presence in the keep is just there, and for now at least, minding its own business. Whatever that entity was in the craftsmen district is probably connected with the Helvetilds and was in the open where people can stumble across it.” – Maebh, eating an apple.

    “Quiet, I’m trying to listen.” – Kel’Serrar, under his breath as he slips into a trance.

    The thing in the castle, whatever it was, is gone.

    “It is gone. No idea where it is now.” – Kel’Serrar, snapping back to reality.

    “Not good.” – Breanna, quietly.

    “This daemon in the Craftsmen District, you think it is connected to the Helvetilds?” – Aeva, upset.

    “Yes, seems logical.” – Maebh, as Breanna nods.

    “Right, let’s go then.” – Aeva, who then physically pushes an inebriated Harold to the door.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Harold seems to have been hit pretty hard by the finality of losing his travelling drinking companion in Tremor. It has taken some time, but it would seem the grief has finally come around.


    * * *

    Southreach predominantly exports leather, and so the Craftsmen District smells foul due to all the tanneries. The sky overhead still looks ominous as the companions make their way to where the spirits inform Aeva this entity has been focusing its power.

    There is a small patch of ground which is completely pitch black, and a shrub nearby which looks like it has been choked of all life. Nothing grows in the blackened earth. Breanna bends down to examine the ground.

    “Whatever this was, it is related to the thing we fought last night. It isn’t the same though… If last night’s daemon was fire, this one is death… This is where it came into our world. Right here, on this very patch of ground, in the shadow of the curtain wall.” – Breanna, musing to herself.

    “So it isn’t here anymore… But this is where it… was born?” – Xander, trying to wrap his mind around this.

    “Yes. About two weeks ago… It is a daemon of death. It wants to take lives and steal life-force, but there’s no trail to follow.” – Breanna, still half to herself.

    “Not true. It takes lives you say? We need to find records of people who have died in Southreach over the last two weeks. Any strange deaths we may be able to attribute to this thing.” – Maebh, shaking the crouching Leathe by the shoulder.

    The companions find a guardsman and ask about any records of deaths in the town.

    “I’m sorry, I can’t help you with that personally as I am on duty. All records are kept in the guardhouse in the keep though. The captain of the guard should be on duty down by the docks. You can ask him for a key.” – Young guardsman, inexplicably nervous.

    The companions decide to hang asking for a key and figure that any door or lock they find won’t be able to withstand their combined power.

    * * *

    Aeva pauses at the gateway before entering the keep and tries to commune with the spirits in the area. The spirits around the castle are few and they are scared, unwilling to come and talk to the druid for fear of being seen by the entity nearby.

    And while the creature is not in the keep at the moment, it is surely nearby, possibly even waiting for the companions to enter before springing its trap…

    A wounded and weary Xander advances to the guardhouse doorway, shield and warhammer in hand. Breanna sits on his shoulder, crossbow in hand, and Aeva/Hawk sits on one of his horns. Harold comes next, sabre and arming sword drawn, and then Maebh and Kel’Serrar last, their own weapons ready too.

    As soon as the Feartarbh opens the door they hear a commotion from several storeys above in the keep, and then, a distant, muffled howl. Before them, the guardhouse appears scarcely used, dust coating most of the surfaces. The archives lay in the next room beyond a pitch-black doorway. Row upon row of parchments sit in dusty shelves, only barely illuminated by the golden flames burning fitfully in Maebh’s upraised hand. They swiftly browse through them, trying to find recent reports of deaths.

    Breanna finds a map of the town, and then starts to mark down the locations of all the deaths which have occurred in the last few weeks. In the end, she has made seven marks on the map, all of which are spread around the township, save for one in Breddvind: Aeva’s family’s house.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Deaths of Southreach
    1st Death: On the Twelfth-day of Secondmonth 1649 CE, the body of a 22-year-old female Northmann was found by guardsmen under the curtain wall to the north on the very edge of the Craftsmen District. It appears she fell from the wall.
    2nd Death: On the Thirteenth-day of Secondmonth , the body of a 67-year-old male Northmann was found in his house, which lies on the northern border of the main Residential District, by his family. Cause of death unknown.
    3rd Death:On the Fifteenth-day of Secondmonth , a family of four Dwergar, two adults and two children, were found deceased in their home in the Residential District, next to the Old Speckled hen Tavern. All appear to have suffocated, but no cause could be found. Area was quarantined for several days, but no repeat occurrences led to the reopening of the area.
    4th Death:On the Twentieth-day of Secondmonth , the body of a 9-year-old female Northmann was found under the first pier of the docks. It is believed she drowned.
    5th Death:On the Twenty-second-day of Secondmonth , the body of a young girl, likely Selkye, was found in the burnt-out remains of a house in the fishing village of Breddvind, to the south of Southreach proper. It is believed she perished in the fire. The location and fate of the other inhabitants, remains unknown.
    6th Death:On the Twenty-third-day of Secondmonth , the body of a 22-year-old male Dwergar guardsman was found in the southern-most tower of the southern curtain wall. His throat was slashed, probably by a knife. No leads on the potential murder as yet.
    7th Death:On the Twenty-fifth-day of Secondmonth , the body of a 12-year-old maleNorthmann was found under the tower on the southern-most edge of the keep-wall. It appears he fell from the wall, although some strange injuries were present around the eyes and mouth.
    One little spirit dares to come inside and flit around Aeva’s head, imploring her to leave. It doesn’t want her there. She is in danger.

    “Discounting Aeva’s family, it has basically just done a crescent if all these are connected. The burning seems to be unique among all of these, and these Helvetilds are supposed to do that.” – Maebh, putting it all together.

    “I managed to get that much out of our captives. The burning was the Helvetilds. This thing looks like it is killing independently.” – Aeva, downcast.

    “Quiet, I need to concentrate again.” – Kel’Serrar, slipping into a trance once more.

    Above, something is raging, moving at great speed. It is large, and does not seem to be alive.

    “It’s coming, it’s coming! Move, move, move!” – Kel’Serrar, snapping out of his trance and taking position right at the doorway, arrow nocked and ready.

    Spoiler: The Rings from the Vaults of Ravnsalm:
    Show

    Remember those two rings Kel’Serrar and Breanna picked up from the Ravnsalm Vaults? Remember how I couldn’t come up with anything to give them, and just copped out and said I’d come up with something later?

    I came up with something.

    What we decided was that those rings might just be able to do anything. If in a situation, like this one, LD and Sins can tell me if they want to see if their ring might be enchanted to help them out. They roll a D10 and I tell them if that was high enough to reveal that the ring does what they want it to do.

    A bit cheap, but it worked well enough. LD uses that here.
    “I want to try and find out what this thing is and how powerful it is. Can I see if my ring will help with that? A ring of daemonic sensing if you will.” – LD.
    “You certainly may. What did you roll?”
    “6” – LD.
    “Congratulations, you have a Ring of Daemonic Sensing.” – With a laugh.


    Breanna tries to focus on the entity rampaging through the castle above them, trying to determine what it is and just how powerful it might be. The ring on her finger blazes to life and helps her concentrate as her mind encounters the daemon.

    “Ah ****. It is at least as powerful as the one we fought last night.” – Breanna, preparing herself as best she can.

    “How long do we have?” – Xander, gruffly.

    “Thirty seconds, give or take.” – Breanna, the terse reply.

    “More powerful than the other one! ****!” – Delphi.
    “We dealt with the other one perfectly well.” – Dev, laughing.
    “Yeah, no we didn’t.” – Delphi.
    “Well no one died.” – Yohan.
    “About that, you’re welcome.” – Ladyhawk, laughing.
    “Someone died….”
    “No one died PG. No one died.” – Sins.
    “Oh right, someone did die. He only died cause of Dev though.” – Yohan.
    “I choose to believe that the important thing is that none of us died.” – Dev.


    Maebh takes a second to try and replenish her reservoir of magical energy. She knows that last night’s exertions took a lot out of her and another encounter of that magnitude might see her stripped entirely of power. Over the last year she has been able to develop some control over her soulfire and now she uses this ability to try and accelerate the process. Better this exhausting process now than having to sacrifice precious life-force in the midst of battle.

    Maebh has a Talent which allows her to make a Channelling Check once per day to try and squeeze a little more Soulfire out of herself in exchange for increasing the Casting Value of all her spells by +2 for a day. She uses that now, as the fight last session caused her to drop pretty low from her 115 Soulfire base.

    Kel’Serrar’s arrow starts to glow with brilliant golden light, illuminating the room with power. Xander too glows with similar energy as he tries to shield the party and Maebh creates a wall of force between the party and where she assumes the entity will emerge before cloaking herself in golden lightning. Aeva takes the form of a dagger-lion and prepares a Snare, ready to drop it somewhere the daemon will be affected by it.

    A roiling black mass bursts from the ceiling, blasting all the companions with tendrils of dark force. Where the tendrils hit, flesh turns black and necrotises, metal rusts and leather wears through, as all the forces of entropy are brought to bear.

    Kel’Serrar brings his bow up, arrow pulsing with golden light, and shoots, the most powerful arrow he has ever loosed. The missile flits through the air over the short distance between the ranger and the daemon, shining brilliantly in the cloying darkness and strikes home somewhere deep within the entity’s incorporeal form. After negation, the True Shot still cause over 40 Damage, and Stunned the daemon.

    Seeing it hurt by Kel’Serrar’s arrow, Aeva tries to snare it with a pulse of ice-blue magic and manages to get ahold of it, but only for a short moment.

    That is all the opportunity Maebh needs to blast the creature with bolts of golden lightning and the creature is repulsed again, blasting into the archive and causing records to go flying, or even simply disintegrate. Xander follows it, as is his wont, with shield and hammer at the ready. He tries to hit the ephemeral being, but can’t seem to pin it down.

    Harold meanwhile finds that he has, without realising it, drawn the Gilded Sword. Knowing what he must do, he calls upon the latent powers within himself, that have been there, dormant in his blood for many ages, since the very first Invarrians travelled to Varr and the first Stormlord calmed the tempests surrounding the island. Harold pushes, and there it is, control of the Bri that force which governs the weather and allows practitioners to master it. The Gilded Sword glows in his hand and then discharges a bolt of lightning at the creature, causing it to recoil yet again.

    Maebh charges in with her spear in hand, the same spear gifted to her by Aeva, and attempts to strike the daemon, which is still stunned by the sheer force of Kel’Serrar’s arrow, but she too is unable to find any purchase with the spear-blade.

    “So this thing has huge modifiers to hit right? Because it is ethereal?” – Sins.
    “Yes that is correct.”
    “Can I see if my ring is a ring of, say, Ethereal Striking? I rolled a 9.” – Sins.
    “Congratulations, you get a Ring of Ethereal Striking!”


    Kel’Serrar, Xander and Harold all attempt to hit the creature, but only Kel’Serrar’s arrows seem to have any effect. The most effective thing they do though is actually Breanna’s flurry of dart spells, which must punch into something vulnerable. It roars in anger at the companions, and even the walls themselves seem to shake. Seeing this, Aeva hurls a magical dart at it too and the creature tries to retreat through the back wall of the archive.

    It pulses again with dark magic and all the companions are hit again with necrotising magic, which this time causes significant damage to them all. Even Xander is close to falling now.

    And then the rage blinds him once more, and Breanna is almost thrown loose by the Feartarbh’s bone-crushing charge. Both of them take yet more damage as Xander practically dives into the ethereal entity, hammer swinging wildly. The Feartarbh takes the heavy hit, and Breanna is forced to react in a split second, leaping out of the saddle, and only just avoiding being completely eviscerated.
    Breanna is on 4 Health at the moment.

    But it is Maebh’s wall of aethyric blades summoned right in the depths of the monster which causes the daemon to try and flee. It has already shrunk noticeably in size, getting weaker the more they chip away at it, and now able to move and react clearly again, it tries to escape. It mentally probes at all of them, searching for a weakness, and then flings a tendril out at Aeva, knocking her on her side before trying to force an opening into her mind. Snarling, she mentally wards it away, but her side is marked by the daemon’s touch, fur and flesh slowly rotting. The dagger-lion which is Aeva roars and pounces into the middle of the entity, trying to find purchase with her enchanted claws.

    Between the two of them, Aeva and Xander are able to cause some kind of damage to the creature which gives out a primordial roar and unleashes a massive wave of force at them, knocking both of them over and stunning Kel’Serrar and Breanna. Harold focuses once more and unleashes another lightning bolt from the Gilded Sword which strikes the centre of the daemon directly.

    The daemon flickers, shrieks and then disappears through the hole in the ceiling, coils of black smoke and dark magic still permeating the air. All around the room are splatters of a dark, viscous fluid, still wisping and sparking with the daemon’s power.

    “Surely it has to be dead?” – Harold, panting, his sword still smoking in his grasp.

    “No, ‘tis only running.” – Maebh, hefting her spear and preparing to chase it.

    She is taken-aback however by Xander’s enraged bellow as the badly wounded Feartarbh smashes a hole straight through the stone wall separating the guardhouse from the rest of the keep. Hammer flailing wildly, Xander widens the gap and ploughs on through into the throne room which has long since been abandoned, save for the six automatons, stone statues bearing large black halberds. They turn their ornately carved heads to face the oncoming Feartarbh, heft their polearms and step down from their podiums.

    They still seem to love discussing how to bring Xander down.
    “Breanna would be the one with the best chance.” – Yohan.
    “I could.” – Sins, quietly.
    “How would Breanna be the one with the best chance?” – Ladyhawk, curious.
    “Xander has really low Willpower and Sleep checks against Willpower. She can magically coma me and then slit my throat.” – Yohan.
    “I have to get close enough to touch you first, and I’m currently on practically no Health, so I don’t think that’s happening.” – LD.
    “How would you take Xander down?” – Dev, to Sins.
    “An Aimed True Shot with my armour-piercing bodkins. Should just about one-shot anything.” – Sins, who is probably correct.
    “Personally think Aeva would cause troubles too. Snare keys off Willpower as well, and can be cast at range. Go lion and cast Snare, doing as much damage to an immobilised target as possible. When Snare wears off, go bird to get out of range and Snare again and go lion once more. Rinse and repeat until dead.”
    “No range weapons would make that pretty nasty. Can Aeva get through Xander’s shielding spells though?” – Yohan.
    “Aeva can actually dispel those shields, and for much less Soulfire than it costs to cast them. So yes.” – Delphi.


    Instead of immediately following the Feartarbh, Meabh and Kel’Serrar sit down to try and perform some kind of first aid on themselves and the others. Kel’Serrar has to pull out a knife and start gouging chunks of flesh away from where the daemon has made contact with their skin to prevent the necrosis from spreading. Maebh then uses her flames to cauterise the wounds before the two of them apply bandages. They are able to get the process done quite quickly, save for Harold’s injuries, which the still inebriated Invarrian insists on seeing to himself. He quickly botches it, his shaking hand accidentally pushing the knife a little too far into his flesh, carving away a bit more flesh than he needed to.

    Harold’s Heal Check on himself was pushed to over 100 due to the effects of the alcohol, so he takes 1 Damage.

    It was here that I in fact took 1 Damage myself in real life. I have an allergy to peanuts, and the group cracked out the peanut m&m’s at this point in time. I copped a fair whiff of it and my throat started closing up. I had to step out of the room for a couple of minutes and get some fresh air and a drink.

    “If I killed PG, I’m going to be very upset.” – Delphi.
    “He doesn’t look too good. Peanuts get him pretty badly.” – Dev, as I am retching outside on the other side of the glass door.
    “I’m worse, which reminds me, I should find my epi-pen.” – LD, leaving the room herself.
    “Is anyone here medically trained other than me?” – Yohan.
    “I did scouts for like three years?” – Delphi.
    “That doesn’t count.” – Yohan.
    There is silence for some time until LD re-enters the room.
    “You lost The Game.” – LD, who is a real bitch.


    Xander crashes into the first automaton, knocking it to the floor and smashing it apart with a few savage blows from his hammer. He then turns aside a thrust from another automaton and delivers a similar swift end to it as well.

    Breanna, having been patched up by Maebh and Kel’Serrar, is the first to follow Xander through the hole. She avoids the automatons deftly, and for their part, they are still far too focused on the immediate threat of Xander to be too concerned about her. Coming upon the sumptuous, but dusty and long abandoned throne, the Leathe notices a dripping from above, that same dark liquid. Using her ring once more she is able to determine that this liquid is essentially the daemon’s blood, and that touching it would probably be a bad idea. The fact that it is dripping from the ceiling suggests that the daemon is above, likely trying to reform itself.

    Aeva comes into the room next, padding around still in the shape of a dagger-lion. She takes up a position behind Xander, hoping to stay out of the combat unless he gets flanked. As she does this, the remaining four statues close in on the Feartarbh.
    “The four statues converge upon Xander.”
    “No.” – Yohan, deadpan.
    “Yes.” – Both Dev and I.

    Only two of the automatons manage to hit Xander, but both strikes are deflected by his aethyric shielding with flashes of golden light.
    Xander actually negates a strike of 24 Damage here completely. He is truly an obscene tank at this stage in the game.

    And then Maebh strides in and encases all four of the automatons in golden ice, locking them in place.

    “Please hurry up and smash them. I don’t know how long I can hold them all.” – Maebh, sounding like she could hold them in place all day if she had to. A slight trickle of blood drips from her nose, but she doesn’t notice.

    Kel’Serrar rolls his eyes seeing Harold’s failure at self-administered first-aid and practically forces the Invarrian to sit still and accept medical aid.
    Sins rolls well enough that Kel actually fixes things wrong with Harold that Harold didn’t even know were hurting him, pushing the Invarrian back up to full health.

    Xander smashes through the immobile statues in a matter of seconds, charges the throne and smashes that too before looking for some stairs to get to the daemon once more. The others can only look on in bemusement.

    “Xander, calm down!” – Maebh, hoping to get some sense out of the thing.

    “WE NEED TO KILL IT!” – Xander, lost in his rage.

    “Xander, please, I need to find my family. If we follow this thing we might die.” – Aeva, back in her natural form and quite shaken by the whole experience.

    “We followed the deaths here Aeva! Your sister’s death led us here! WE KILL IT NOW!” – Xander, howling his triumph as he finds the stairway to the next floor.

    Back shortly.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  16. - Top - End - #196
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    And we return.

    The companions follow him up the stairs and from there to the very top of the tallest tower of the entire keep, struggling to keep pace with the Feartarbh, even with the severe injuries he has withstood.

    Eventually they come to the highest room of the tallest tower, where a shadowy figure, approximately the height of a Northmann stands before a huge glass window, back turned to the companions coming up the stairs. Xander doesn’t even break stride, striking at the figure with his hammer, but the daemon flickers out of existence as the hammer passes through where it stood.

    Breanna takes out the Three Coins and tries to pull the daemon’s essence into them, draining it of power. Doing so diminishes it substantially, leaving it a small, smoking lump on the floor, which flicks a tendril of power out in retaliation. Breanna dodges aside and Xander takes the strike with his shield, ignoring the slight pain it gives him. The Feartarbh roars with rage and smashes it with his hammer, leaving a black paste on the floor. Breanna tries again, and the paste appears to be sucked straight into the coins.

    To the touch, one side of each coin is burning hot, the other deathly cold.

    We had a bit of discussion with regards to Xander Raging and whether or not that should mean that he should charge the coin, which is of course where the daemon is now hiding. Of course if he does that, the wounded Breanna is in the way and most likely dead.

    Which then lead to more discussion on how the Guardian spells work, namely that they work on allies, but if forced to deal damage to an ally through Rage, would that ally no longer be considered an ally, and so therefore no longer affected by the spells.

    We decided that spells which required active concentration would probably be dropped as soon as Rage is entered, whereas just flat “Remains in Play” spells would probably continue to act as normal.


    It would seem that Southreach was the preying ground of two separate daemons, and now both have been defeated and then trapped by the companions. Aeva contacts the spirits in the area, informing them that the time of fear is now over and they can go about their tasks without danger. The spirits pass on their gratitude to the companions and lay a blessing upon them.

    Every character picks up a Luck Point as the spirits’ reward for helping them. At this stage, a reward far more useful than loot.

    The next three days pass quite uneventfully as the companions do their best to try and lay low and recover from their recent trials. Maebh and Harold both explore the castle in their downtime, looking for anything interesting.

    Spoiler: What they found…:
    Show

    Harold: The Invarrian spent a few hours searching the keep for items of interest. He uncovered some old scrolls written in ancient Invarrian and beneath the throne-room, an oubliette filled with desiccated corpses of various races and ages, evidence of a particularly cruel lord who once ruled here. He also finds a small stash of coinage, which is split equally amongst the party.

    There’s also an armoury, long abandoned, but the equipment within is still of a high quality.
    - Bastard sword with a storm rune. (Maebh)
    - Longbow carved with the symbol of a Danann god of war. (Kel’Serrar)
    - Masterwork silvered dagger. (Breanna)
    - Large kite shield with runes of strength. (Xander)

    Ladyhawk took the sword and promptly forgot all about it, Sins didn’t want the bow, concerned about the (un)holy carvings upon it, LD took the dagger and probably forgot all about it too and Yohan decided to equip two shields for combat, figuring he doesn’t do that much damage anyway, may as well get an extra Parry.


    Maebh: The Danann restricted her searching to the nights, and kept it secret from the other companions. She knew of this castle, and of a particular item which should have been hidden here, a mirror, of sorts, one which did not reflect the material world but rather another one, where the Gods slumbered. She searched high and low, but was unsuccessful.

    The mage resolved to return when all this was done. She had unfinished business here.


    Aeva spends her time communicating with spirits and forming a bond between them and her companions. Over the course of the three days she grants a wisp to each of the company, which will watch over them and be able to inform her if any of them are in need or danger.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Aeva never reveals to them that these wisps were actually ‘birthed’ from her…


    * * *

    Dev decides he doesn’t like the fact that Ladyhawk is taking an interest in this castle and so resolves to give it away as quickly as possible. He finds the captain of the town’s guard, an irascible veteran of several wars by the look of him.

    The conversation does not go well. Harold begins by telling him to take the castle now it is cleared out and declare his rule. When the captain does not agree to this, Harold tries to intimidate him into it.

    “Who do you think you are to come here and tell us how to run our town? We have a system, and it works for us. Now bugger off.” – Captain Ulfrum.

    “Why the captain of the guard? What makes him suitable for rule?” – Ladyhawk.
    “Cause he is military. And cause he’s one of the few around here that the people would respect and obey.” – Dev, who you would not imagine from this is actually against ‘strong rule the weak,’ mentality.
    “Surely there’s a village elder or something who you wouldn’t be forcing it upon?” – Ladyhawk, who is so close to just giving up on the whole thing.
    “I’ll list all my titles and bring him around.” – Dev.


    “I am the scion of the Oakenshields, champion of the late Stormlord and the First Reaver of Varr.” – Harold, hoping to get his way through personal connections.

    “Aren’t you the lucky one? Pleased to meet you, I’m the Emperor of Drell. Now **** off.” – Ulfrum, sarcastic and thoroughly unimpressed.

    And then Harold punches him in the face.

    “Oh here we go.”
    “I join in on the guards’ side.” – Ladyhawk.
    “If I were there, I would be punching Harold in the face. You have to show some sort of respect to your superiors.” – Yohan.
    “He isn’t my superior though.” – Dev.
    “He is in this town. You’ve got no kind of jurisdiction here.” – Yohan.
    “I’m a reaver. I’ve got jurisdiction anywhere.” – Dev.
    “That attitude is exactly why I would be punching you in the face.” – Yohan, laughing.


    “Get your arse in that castle, take the job and start cleaning up this mess.” – Harold.

    “Take him to the dungeon lads.” – Ulfrum, rubbing his jaw where the Invarrian hit him. Four of his guards run forward, weapons threatening Harold.

    “Deathsword to knock them all on their arses here.” – Dev.
    “It’s okay, he’s not killing them, he’s just using Deathsword.” – Sins, sarcastic.


    One of the guards manages to lay a hand on the Invarrian, and Harold throws him off without pause, completely contemptuous. The other three hang back now, concerned by the ease with which their comrade was despatched.

    “Stop this ****! You’re all children!” – Xander, who has come roaring from where he was helping out on the docks.

    “Eight successes on the Intimidation Check.” – Yohan.
    “I roll to resist.” – Dev, who fails.
    “Did he just… He did! He used a Luck Point to re-roll that!” – LD, as Dev burns some Luck to resist.
    “I can’t believe you’re wasting your Luck on this.” – Ladyhawk, quietly.
    “**** it. And…. I fail anyway.” – Dev.


    The guardsmen still standing are edging away from the obviously furious Feartarbh and even Harold is given a moment’s pause. Ulfrum on the other hand still appears singularly unimpressed.

    “Thank you. You’re not wrong, but mind your own business.” – Ulfrum, nodding to his men to continue trying to take Harold.

    “This is my ally. He is my business. I know he’s probably being a prick, but we’ve had a trying few months.” – Xander, attempting to negotiate with the grizzled captain.

    “Fine. Stand down men. And you, Invarrian, if you ever try to even talk to me again you are going to be locked the **** up.” – Ulfrum, signalling his men to stand down.

    For his part, after the initial startle given to him by Xander’s sudden appearance, Harold looks keen and ready for a fight. It has been a good while now since his last real fight, the business with the daemons and the Helvetilds not really counting.

    “Harold, not now. We can come back and deal with this when the world isn’t at stake. Better to walk away now than to have to bust yourself out of a dungeon.” – Xander, quietly to the Invarrian.

    The duellist’s ears flick and he stands down.

    * * *

    The companions, minus Harold, travel west for around a week. Harold will meet them in Urik’s Landing with the Tide Tremor, but the others go overland in case Aeva’s family is on the road between the two towns. Eventually, they come upon a familiar sight. Well familiar for Maebh, Breanna and Kel’Serrar anyway. They approach the port-town of Urik’s Landing.

    “Burn it to the ****ing ground!” – Dev.
    “Time to put on my Dhara costume.” – Sins.
    “Do you really want to do that?”
    “No. Definitely not.” – Sins.

    Spoiler: Last Time They Were Here:
    Show

    Last time the companions were able to kill a monstrous beastie and solve a murder mystery, killing the lord’s personal sorcerer into the bargain.
    “We also killed a turnip.” – Ladyhawk, remembering the most important part of their time here.


    For their entire journey, Aeva has been in constant contact with the spirits, entreating them to go on ahead and tell her family to wait and that she is on her way.

    The eastern gate is guarded by two Northmenn with spears. The lord’s hall sits on a hill on the north-eastern edge of town. The guards inform the companions that if they wish to stay in Urik’s Landing they must sign into the ledgers of one of the two inns along the main road, and then allow them in. Despite the reasonably pleasant weather, the marketplace looks reasonably abandoned, presumably again due to the wars to the north.

    They find Harold in the Blackmane Inn, enjoying a drink and a chat with the innkeeper, Alrik up at the bar. The other companions take a seat too, and Aeva asks the brown-furred Invarrian if he has seen any Selkye come into the town.

    “There’s a family in the Irontusk Inn actually, arrived just a couple of weeks ago.” – Alrik, who is taken aback as Aeva drops everything and runs outside and across the road.

    Ignoring the man sitting in the booth beside the inn’s door, Aeva dashes inside and sees some familiar faces. With a little scream of delight and a couple of quick dance steps the girl runs across the common room and embraces her father, who has stood from the table he shares with two other Selkye, a massive beaming grin on his face.

    “Aeva!” – Aeva’s father, picking the slightly built girl up and spinning her around.

    She disengages from her father and shifts to her mother and sister who have both stood as well.

    “My sister’s alive?” – Delphi.
    “Yes, she is. Sadly, the dog is not, but your sister is.”


    Aeva’s father tells the Irontusk innkeeper to pour drinks for everyone, and the social war between the two eminent families of Urik’s Landing is postponed for a day as everyone enjoys the unlikely event which has just occurred in front of them. The drinks flow all afternoon and evening, and all share in the happiness of a family reunited in the midst of war and devastation.

    Over the night, Aeva’s family shares the events of their flight, from the initial Wrothdar assault on the Nordur-Vatn lands during which they were separated and their escape north, as far as Nordtarnet for a time, hiding in the woods along the riverbank in the west of that realm. They tell her of their time in Southreach and the fishing village of Breddvind, of the months they spent there, trying to make a new life. By then, all those of their tribe they had travelled with had been picked off, by the cold, brigands, wolves or some unseen menace from the depths. They tell her of the death threats they received while living in Breddvind, made by a group who called themselves the Helvetilds.

    They share a tale of fear and fire as the Helvetilds attacked in the middle of the night, lighting a blaze which consumed their home, their faithful hafhund and Aeva’s father’s apprentice. Lucky to escape with their lives, their flight began anew, and they braved the cold northern weather with nothing more than the clothes on their backs, fleeing the burning wreck of the short period of peace they just lost.

    “But Father, all of this came about because the Wrothdar came down from the mountains those years ago. Why? How did this all start?” – Aeva, to her father, later in the night when most of the revellers had withdrawn. Her sister lies on the seat beside her, head in the druid’s lap, sleeping soundly, still smiling.

    “How well do you remember the myths of our people my dear?” – Blaevar, Aeva’s father, quietly nursing his latest alcoholic beverage.

    “Reasonably well. It has been some time since I heard them recited.” – Aeva.

    “Do you recall the stafbrigdi around the village at the time of the attack?” – Blaevar, referring to a Selkic custom.

    Spoiler: Stafbrigdi
    Show

    Every month, many Selkye paint symbols on doors and mantels with religious significance. These images usually make reference to events in the Selkye mythology, or pay homage to heroes or the Great Spirits.


    “The World’s End...” – Aeva, realisation slowly dawning on her.

    “A great wave sent by the Golden Eagle to destroy the world, yes. Before we fled, I observed a Wrothdar shaman come forward and perform a rite or a ritual over the site of our village, using our stafbrigdi as some kind of focus.” – Blaevar.

    “Father, this event, it isn’t just a myth. The Invarrians have a prophecy regarding the same thing, a flood which will destroy the world.” – Aeva.

    “I believe it. The power this shaman brought to bear… You cannot imagine it, the screams of the spirits as he tore them asunder to fuel his ritual. He bound it to a timeframe. This flood, it will occur on the Harvest Moon.” – Blaevar, staring into his ale.

    It is clear that her father was quite shaken by the events of the fall of the Nordur-Vatn. After all, many of those spirits ruthlessly crushed were probably friends of a sort.

    Blaevar is a Shaman himself, though not of any particular power. Aeva’s mother is a Druid, like her daughters, and quite powerful, though by this stage, Aeva herself is probably more so.


    “Four weeks before the end of the world…” – Aeva, finishing her drink.

    * * *

    It is early the next morning and a slightly dishevelled group of companions in various stages of hangover have gathered in the Blackmane Inn.

    “One month until the Harvest Moon.” – Aeva, obviously distressed.

    “Do your peoples’ legends say anything about how to stop it?” – Xander.

    Aeva shakes her head.

    “The legend does say that the flood is sent by the Golden Eagle though, yes?” – Maebh.

    Aeva nods.

    “Elspeth’s sigil is a golden eagle on a field of blue.” – Kel’Serrar, quietly.

    “Back to Summer Hill then? According to the Greyflood Prophecy, we’ll be seeing war in fields of Summer or something like that. Good chance Queen Esmerelda will be with her army.” – Harold.

    “Or she’s a smart ruler and is safe in her castle, letting her army do the war part while she ends the world.” – Maebh.

    “I would like to go back to Summer Hill myself.” – Kel’Serrar, not letting on his reasons.

    Breanna at this stage is just sitting back eating a peach, happy to go with whatever the others choose.

    “Do we have the time to do that? It will take at least two and a half weeks to get to Summer Hill and that is with the absolute best of luck and going through Morne. We’d be cutting it fine to get to Elspeth in time for the Harvest Moon if we’re wrong about her being in Summer Hill.” – Maebh.

    “Did we ever find out what connection Dhara had to Elspeth?” – Sins.
    “Only that she was the daughter of the mayoress of Summer Hill.”
    “Dhara should be in Summer Hill then? We go to Summer Hill first, she needs to die.” – Ladyhawk.


    “We need to take that risk. Remember, Elspeth cared enough about Summer Hill that they tried to summon the Lord of Winter to pave their way inside. Obviously it is important.” – Kel’Serrar.

    “Okay, Summer Hill it is.” – Maebh, agreeing.

    Breanna stands and throws what is left of her peach out a window.

    “Let’s get a move on.” – Breanna.

    I then reveal some of my very finest foreshadowing.
    “The end of the Greyflood Prophecy guys, talks about the Devourer reaping a harvest.”
    “The Harvest Moon. Of course!” – LD.
    “And what was the name of Wilmund Brewer’s tavern in Summer Hill?”
    “Oh you bastard!” – Sins, the first time I have actually seen him properly impressed by foreshadowing.
    “Get out! Right now!” – Delphi.
    “Harvest Wolf… Is that two references in one go cause of the Wolf King too? I hate you.” – LD.


    The companions stand and get ready to leave, with one very notable exception.

    “Come on Aeva, let’s go.” – Breanna, furry hand on her friend’s shoulder.

    “I’m not coming Bree. I set out to find my family and, well, I’ve done that. In the process I’ve found out that the world is about to end. I have a month or so before we are all dead, and I have over a year of lost time with my family to catch up on.” – Aeva, quietly, but with finality.

    “Aeva, come on. We need you with us.” – Harold.

    “Don’t you see? We’re all going to die Harold! After all this time, after everything I went through to find them, we’re all going to die and it won’t mean anything! At least let me spend my last days with them. All I wanted was to find them again.” – Aeva, angry.

    “Stay safe then Aeva, and may fortune smile upon you.” – Maebh, who then walks out, followed by the others, leaving Aeva behind.

    The Wrap-Up:
    A pretty good session, which wrapped up a few loose ends and really ramped up the pressure time-frame wise. Revealing all the harvest foreshadowing felt pretty good too after so many years.

    Losing Delphi was a bit of a blow. Unfortunately she has some personal stuff happening at the moment that she felt needed to take the front seat and didn’t feel entirely comfortable juggling her time and efforts. Of course we wish her all the best for her future, and there remains some hope she will rejoin us one day, although I imagine that 3 Coins itself will be over by then.

    So now we’re off, back to Summer Hill with the original band, plus a gigantic Feartarbh.

    Hopefully I will have Session 6.3 up and ready to go before we play Session 6.4, but I can’t guarantee that at this stage.

    Until then, suffice to say there will be corpsewalkers. Lots and lots of corpsewalkers.

    Bye!
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2017-04-20 at 08:41 PM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  17. - Top - End - #197
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    Session 6.3: Three Coins, No Birds and Two Gilded Swords

    "...Having travelled back to where this all started and seeing it in ruins, I have to ask, have we actually ever succeeded in any of our goals? Everything we have done has played into this prophecy, each town we have "saved" has supposedly been ravaged in our wake.

    We've left companions behind, not always even alive. We've ruined the hopes of a nation and left chaos where our goal was order. More than one king has met his end around us. Now we march willingly towards the end of the world. We've so many defeats behind us, but this next battle may be the only one that counts and if we succeed here then at least all we have lost along the way will have had some meaning.

    Each of us fights for our own reasons and that will have to be enough. Naya willing, mine may even live to see another day..."

    From the journal of Kel'Serrar Naya...

    Welcome to Session 6.3.

    The woods around Summer Hill come alive with unearthly screeching and the companions ready themselves.

    We started this session with a huge set-piece battle, which I intended to have last for a lot longer than it did. I also expected it to be at least slightly more dangerous than it was…

    From the woods to either side comes a handful of corpsewalkers, and an entire horde has appeared on the plains ahead. But that isn’t all of them.

    “Careful, they’re coming from underground too!” – Kel’Serrar, whose keen ears have picked up the tell-tale scrabbling of tunnellers.

    "This is rocks fall, everyone dies guys." - LD, mock upset.

    For moment, the ranger disappears and then a slightly translucent copy appears some way to his right with sword in hand.

    Kel uses a Mesmer spell which grants him Invisibility and creates a cloned copy which he can control. I don’t remember the name of the spell at this time.

    Harold spurs Amadeus into action and draws his sabre, Bach darting along beside him. Arcane energies arc from the Invarrian’s sword, blasting a shrieking corpsewalker apart as Harold thunders into a clump of its compatriots.

    Xander takes up his two shields and takes a central position on the centre of the road. He gives a great roar, and with some mental strain he manifests golden aethryic shielding around his allies. The Feartarbh shakes his head, the strain having caused him a headache and a slight nosebleed, and one eye is bloodshot with burst vessels.
    “You’ve all been Xander-d.” – Yohan.

    Breanna, riding Wolfgang charges in herself, knives flashing, corpsewalkers falling apart in their wake.

    While her companions rush into combat, Maebh takes a moment to coalesce a shield of lightning around herself, and then manifest a wall of blades across the road, between the companions and the main horde of corpsewalkers on the plain ahead.

    It doesn’t dissuade the attackers. Corpsewalkers are approaching in great numbers, from the woods all around and the plains ahead. Every moment the engagement lasts, even more are attracted by the sounds of battle and the smell of blood.

    Fingertips worn to bone claws, hands stretch up from the ground, grasping at Xander, who crushes them without mercy. Another springs up from the ground beneath, tackling Breanna from Wolfgang, but the Leathe and the marcwolf turn on it and put it down in seconds.

    Charging towards the glowing Feartarbh, a mass of growling and shrieking corpsewalkers hurl themselves into Maebh’s blades. Two get through with serious injuries, the others get minced. Those two are simply thrown aside by the hulking Xander.

    And then they hear it, in the distance. Warhorns, signalling them to stand firm. Help is on the way.

    Still mounted on Amadeus, Harold charges down three more corpsewalkers, blades flashing. On the other side of the road, Breanna and Wolfgang are able to put down another between them, but it is Maebh who causes the majority of the damage. A great storm manifests overhead as Maebh projects her power into the sky and golden lightning crashes down into the horde, a corpsewalker spontaneously immolating with each bolt. Within moments the corpsewalkers have been cleared off the road and the companions get just a little bit of time to reassess.

    They can hear more of the walkers coming from either side of the road and of course the great horde approaches from the west. The lull is over all too quickly, and again the companions enter the fray, the sounds of blades puncturing flesh punctuated by the constant crashing of Maebh's lightning bolts.

    One corpsewalker makes it through Maebh's bladewall and charges straight at Xander, claws outstretched.
    "Well that's a mistake." - LD.
    The Feartarbh plants his shields in the ground and the corpsewalker scrabbles desperately at the lacquered wood, with no success. A few more walkers force their way through the bladewall, and start to try and climb over the Feartarbh's shields and even more emerge from beneath the ground, two charging at Maebh and others swarming Xander and Kel'Serrar's illusory copy.

    "Xander, push!" - Harold, scything through another corpsewalker as Bach pounces on another which was about to pull him out of the saddle.

    Gritting his teeth, Xander takes a step forward, and then another, forcing the corpsewalkers back into Maebh's wall of golden spinning blades.

    Harold passes a Command Check to give Xander an extra half-action to make a Strength Check to push the corpsewalkers into the Blade Wall. Very handy work from the team as a whole.
    "I like this plan. Do you like this plan?" - Dev.
    "It is a plan, that's for sure." - Yohan.
    "Better than my plan. I'm just going one at a time here." - Sins.
    "Still putting one down every ten seconds basically. That's pretty good."


    Behind him, the illusion of Kel'Serrar is overwhelmed by a tide of walkers, but upon doing so they are put down by a flurry of arrows from the ranger's real position and lightning bolts from above.

    I intended this combat to be a long set-piece full of imminent danger for the party. Unfortunately, they deal so much damage and Xander's high-level Guardian abilities mean that they're just about impossible to challenge, or even damage really, without magic or high explosives... Ah well. I ended up calling this combat off about halfway as it was abundantly clear that I was never going to get through their damage resistance. I was also rolling some absolute trash, which really didn't help.

    On the plus side, I had quite a bit of fun rolling Wolfgang's attacks in tandem with LD. I felt like part of a team. *sobs*


    It took the better part of an hour, but eventually even the corpsewalkers learnt the meaning of fear. These creatures, which know nothing but hunger and rage, retreat in the face of the companions. With hatred in their black eyes, the corpsewalkers fall back, wary now of the flashing blades and the golden lights which unerringly strike them down.

    Rather than try their luck against the companions, the corpsewalkers turn their attentions towards the approaching brigade, who bear the eagle banners of Elspeth. They fall upon the brigade, but the legionnaires stand firm under the onslaught, blades flashing.

    Xander leads the companions into the fray once more, and it is mere moments before the last of the corpsewalkers are put down with extreme prejudice. The Feartarbh is then confronted by the commander of the Elspeth brigade, a tall blonde Lowlander woman in half-plate armour. Wary, but not aggressive, the commander introduces herself.

    "Captain Sevara Ironhawk of the Third Legion of Elspeth." - The Elspeth captain.

    "Xander Wrothgar, mercenary. What news do you have of Summer Hill?" - Xander.

    "Not much, and the little I have is not good. What is your business here?" - Ironhawk.

    "I was travelling with my companions here to the town and we were ambushed by the corpsewalkers you see behind us." - Xander, motioning to the mountain of dismembered bodies on the road behind.

    "Mere travellers? I think not, but that is none of my concern." - Ironhawk, with a knowing smile.

    Xander has the good grace to look at least somewhat ashamed at being caught in the lie.

    "I will offer you a detachment from my company should you wish it, though I doubt you would need them." - Ironhawk, continuing.

    "No captain, I think we should be able to manage. I daresay you will need them more than we." - Xander.

    Behind the captain, the troops of her brigade are busy checking the bodies of the dead, decapitating the corpsewalkers. They look haggard and tired, yet professional for all that, the cream of the crop of months of hard fighting. A few men are grimacing in pain as they are administered needles full of some glowing green liquid.

    "What is the purpose of the injections captain?" - Xander, curious.

    "An antidote to the corpsewalker virus. The mages of Elspeth have managed to produce some kind of cure of sorts, but it must be administered to the bloodstream before the changes start to take effect. None of your companions were bitten in the conflict were they?" - Ironhawk, suddenly suspicious.

    "No, not to my knowledge, and my companions have faced this foe before, so they know the dangers." - Xander.

    Ironhawk's eyes narrow slightly at this, but she doesn't pursue it further.

    One of the members of Ironhawk’s company is quite familiar. A reconnaissance specialist by the look of her, dressed in worn leathers, accented with dark red cloth. A familiar tanned face, framed by shoulder-length dark hair. A hated face.

    Dhara.

    Spoiler: Dhara
    Show

    Ah yes, the hated Dhara. Daughter of Lady Silverwood, the wife of Mayor Redwyn of Summer Hill. Or, perhaps, the late Mayor Redwyn of Summer Hill. It seems Summer Hill no longer has a mayor, or at the very least, that Redwyn is probably not it.

    Since she betrayed and abandoned the companions, Dhara has reported to her mother, who sent her on to report to the Queen of Elspeth herself on the situation. As punishment for allowing the situation to get so out of hand, she was sent back to the corpsewalker-infested Summer Hill with the legions.


    “She is at the top of the murder list.” – Sins.
    “We can’t afford to get involved in a pitched battle against these guys.” – Yohan, thinking about Xander’s Soulfire reserves and how low they are getting.
    “You could try to Intimidate your way into becoming the new captain?” – Sins.
    “We could do that perhaps, but I fear that if it goes wrong, we’re low on resources. This isn’t the main fight remember.” – Yohan.
    “That’s true, something is waiting for us in Summer Hill.” – Ladyhawk, quietly.


    For her part Dhara tries to avoid the companions as much as she can, and despite a few pointed glares, particularly from Maebh, she is unmolested. Kel’Serrar can’t help but brush his fingertips against the fletching of an arrow whenever he sees her however, and Breanna lapses into a pleasant daydream about murdering the scout where she stands.

    "We must be on our way. Safe travels friend. I hope that you find whatever it is you seek in Summer Hill, but be warned, it is vile nest of the creatures, and the monster that rules it is both clever and fierce." - Ironhawk, shaking Xander's hand.

    The two companies part amicably.

    "That was nice. Not all Elspeth people are bad." - LD.

    * * *

    Summer Hill. It looks quite different from the last time the companions were there. The wide golden fields, the farmlands which sustained it, are now gone, replaced by a dry, ashen wasteland. Smoke rises from the township itself and the deep forests which directly surrounded it have been replaced by copses of burnt trees. Nothing seems to be alive.

    "We did good guys." - Sins.
    "Good saving. Really love our work." - Ladyhawk.

    They got a little sidetracked here talking about how everything they try to save ends up dead. They have a point.
    - Summer Hill: Look at it.
    - Dreven: Apparently the Wolf King wasn't killed properly.
    - Urik's Landing: Actually turned out okay. They killed the serial killer and the horrific beast, but left the 'good' doctor alive. Hope he doesn't turn up again...
    - Nordtarnet: Thanks to their efforts, the Resistance imploded and Bain is now the undisputed ruler, ready to expand his tyrannical rule.
    - Varr: Couldn't save the Stormlord, managed to lose the heir, pinched the sword and buggered off.
    - Southreach: Well they did cripple a cult and kill some kind of daemon monster in the castle, but they also killed a couple of kids in the process.

    Spoiler: The Fate of Harold's Captives:
    Show

    When Harold knocked out a couple of kids that night in Southreach, Aeva proceeded to 'interrogate' them regarding the burning of her parents' house. Of course, 'interrogate' here having the meaning, 'kill mercilessly.'


    “No chance of meeting Rangard I wouldn’t think.” – Harold, pointing out the burnt-out remnants of the farmhouse they last saw the merchant lord in.

    “So, why exactly are we here?” – Xander, asking a good question.

    “We’re checking on some things. We’re hoping, in a way, that this is where the Queen’s strike will fall.” – Maebh.

    “According to the prophecy, the conflict will be decided upon the fields of Summer. That suggests that it is here, or in the general vicinity, that we need to be.” – Harold.

    “So we are here because of prophecy.” – Xander.

    “Yes.” – Harold.

    “Great.” – Breanna, sharing an eye-roll with Xander.

    They continue on into the town.

    * * *

    More soon guys...
    Last edited by Phoenixguard09; 2017-06-07 at 05:58 AM.
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  18. - Top - End - #198
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    And so we return dear friends...

    For the most part, Summer Hill is abandoned, but near the main hall where Redwyn once ran the town from, a horde of corpsewalkers lie in wait. Some still wear armour, the bestial remnants of what were the guardsmen. Most carry weapons, and shrieking their awful cries, they fall upon the companions in a tide of blood, bone, claws, fangs and steel.

    At the top of the stairs leading to the main hall stand three corpsewalkers, all armed, the one in the middle carrying a large greataxe. The axe-armed walker retreats into the halls as the two others join the horde rushing at the companions.

    A wall of glittering golden blades materialises across the main road, eviscerating a handful of the corpsewalkers, but these seem more intelligent than the others the companions have faced, and they do not rush headfirst into the wall in bloodlust, but instead seek a way around.

    On the right-hand side of the road, mounted on Amadeus with Bach loping alongside, Harold charges into the midst of the creatures, lightning and molten silver arrows flashing from his blade. Between the Invarrian and his marcwolf, a knot of corpsewalkers clad in the tattered remnants of their uniforms are brought down.

    On the other side of the main road, a shadowy dervish on a shaggy grey blur whirls into another cluster of corpsewalkers, scything through another three in an instant. A fourth is picked off by a gleaming arrow to the eye.

    Another knot of corpsewalkers masses around Harold, trying to pull him from his steed, but the wily Invarrian is able to avoid their clutches. A few have managed to make their way around Breanna and Wolfgang too, but are confronted by Xander, who hefts his shields menacingly.

    The axe-armed corpsewalker reappears in the doorway of the hall, and the companions can see two more figures within. One is just a man, quite slender in build.

    "That's what scares me the most." - Yohan.

    The other is a gigantic Feartarbh, at least as large as Xander.

    A few gasps here, and not a few of recognition.
    "Ah, the ambassador! Alright." - Sins, in a tone that may have been admiration or disappointment. I'd like to say the former, but knowing Sins as I do, it was probably the latter.
    "Is that the one I hugged? Is he still my friend?" - Ladyhawk.
    I shake my head sadly.


    "What is this? Ebeurnus, call the horde. Kill them." - The rasping voice of the shadowy figure they assume is Edmond Carhold.

    A thunderous horn-blast rings out from the doorway as the gigantic jet-black Feartarbh strides out, a silvered war-horn grasped in one hand. In the other meaty fist, the bodyguard carries a truly gigantic greatsword, inscribed with glyphs which seem to change and shift. It is also gold, but not a wholesome shine like the Gilded Blade they recovered from Werencha, rather a sickly, tainted gold.

    "This sword, how big is it exactly? Like is it just a big greatsword, or is it big to everyone else, or is it actually big to him?" - Yohan.
    "It is about the same length as he is tall, so it is about eight and a half feet?"
    "Oh hell, I want it so badly." - Yohan.
    "You don't even use greatswords anymore." - Ladyhawk.
    "Only cause we've never seen one this cool before!" - Yohan.


    Another horde of corpsewalkers approach the conflict on the street, this time from behind the companions. At their head is someone they recognise, Royan Settwatch, the captain of the guard, sword and shield in hand. He has, of course, been corpsewalker-ed. Shrieking and screaming they charge towards Maebh, who drops her wall of blades and blasts the oncoming mass with a devastating gale. A score or more and Settwatch are obliterated where they stand, and that many and more again are sent flying back down the road from whence they came, but an even greater number are coming, drawn by Ebeurnus' horn-call.

    With the hulking Feartarbh now out in the street, Harold and Xander make their way towards him as quickly as they can, fighting their way through yet another knot of corpsewalkers. Another group tries to fall on them from behind, but Maebh conjures up an icy blast which freezes them in place, a situation which Breanna immediately capitalises on, daggers flashing as she dismembers them.

    Standing invisible beside Maebh, Kel'Serrar steadily picks off the corpsewalkers drawn towards the battlefield one by one. His keen ears can hear the sounds of the innumerable hordes still scattered around the township and he resolves to keep shooting.

    Going back over the recording and Kel just quietly picked up a nice little kill-count in this encounter. In game terms he only got twelve to this point, which is still good, but I feel from a narrative standpoint, he probably picked off a good few more.

    With a roar, Ebeurnus charges Xander and the two behemoths clash. The guardian grits his teeth and expertly turns the massive golden blade aside with a shield, but the sheer impact rocks him where he stands and it takes all of his strength not to be overborne in the charge.

    In game terms, Yohan rolled a hell of a Parry, but Ebeurnus' greatsword is an Impact weapon, so Xander still takes half damage on a successful Parry. Xander's damage reduction is so obscenely high that it barely hurt him though. In addition to this, Ebeurnus has a Talent which causes his Charge attack to inflict an opposed Strength Check. If that is failed, Ebeurnus' opponent is knocked prone. This is all well and good, but while Raging, Xander's Strength goes to somewhere above 110, making it very unlikely he'll fail the Check. (Norbayne's stats do not normally go above 80, let alone 100)

    That said, Ebeurnus is such a tough customer that he did actually come close to knocking Xander over.

    "Well he managed to do 16 Damage despite the Parry and almost knock me over on the charge. This guys would hurt like HELL if he attacked anyone else in the party!" - Yohan.
    "Yes, well, why do you think he's attacking you?"


    Burning the last of his reserves, Xander refreshes his wards and tries to buffet his massive rival into submission with his shields. He is not particularly successful.

    "Okay, Kel's up."
    "Successful cast, no doubles." - Sins.
    "What are you casting?"
    "True Shot." - Sins.
    "Ah, of course." - To the victorious laughter of all present.
    "Someone is going to die!" - LD, maniacally laughing.

    I'll say this for them, they do all seem to enjoy seeing the others succeed. I don't generally need to worry about members of the group being upset that another one is going to trivialise the encounter anymore. Instead they just pat the offender on the back and congratulate them, all while laughing at the forlorn look on my face.

    "Okay, so 13 degrees of success on the hit." - Sins.
    "With the armour-piercing arrows, yes?" - Yohan.
    "Of course. Now PG, does Dev's Lightning Aegis affect my arrows?" - Sins.
    "Yes, it does." - Sadly watching as they prepare to take my big impressive boss down in one shot.
    Sins gives a little giggle before he rolls.

    All up, Sins does 74 Damage, which is reduced to 66 Damage by Ebeurnus' Toughness. Dev asked me if armour might apply some more damage reduction, but I think it was just a sneaky ploy to get me to say once again that the armour was negated by the arcane bodkins.


    Just as Xander starts to wonder how he will ever manage to bring the other Feartarbh down, a golden streak flashes past, exploding in Ebeurnus' face with force of a wrathful god. The ground itself shakes with the power unleashed by the ranger's arrow, and even the massing corpsewalkers are momentarily halted by it. When the dust and smoke clears they can see that Ebeurnus is still standing, but not much remains of the Feartarbh above the neck and the handful of corpsewalkers flanking him were likewise destroyed. A long, silent ten seconds passes and what is left of the corpse finally falls to the ground.

    "He also misses his next action." - Sins, to the uproarious laughter of all present.
    "OH! Wait a minute...." - Rolling.
    "So you see guys, Ebeurnus has an ability which allows him to stay up for a single Round after being dealt the killing blow, and you see here, he passed his Willpower Check, so he does in fact get another Round, but he cannot use an action. Well played Sins."


    "Noooo!" - Carhold, from within the main hall.

    Harold answers the man's cry with a bolt of lightning from his blade, and the fallen ambassador screams in agony.

    "Are you angry cause I can shoot lightning now too?" - Dev.
    "No, cause mine is better." - Ladyhawk.


    Carhold runs out of the hall, grasping a sword and slightly smoking.

    "Wait, he's still alive? I thought Harold hit him with a lightning bolt?" - Ladyhawk.
    "The bolt did 9 Damage."
    "Oh right, I just didn't realise how much better my lightning was." - Ladyhawk.


    The ambassador hurls three gleaming daggers out, one each at Breanna, Harold and Xander. Breanna dodges and Xander is able to get a shield between the dagger and his flesh, but Harold takes a minor flesh wound.

    With the corpsewalkers fleeing following Ebeurnus' demise, Breanna finds the dagger which flew past her and examines it. It is masterfully crafted and enchanted with an armour-piercing rune, not dissimilar to that adorning some of Kel'Serrar's arrows. She resolves to keep it and obtain the other two from Harold and Xander later.

    Calling upon her reserves of power, Maebh calls down a massive golden bolt of lightning from the sky and fries Carhold where he stands.

    And so it is that the township of Summer Hill is liberated from tyrannical rulership once more.

    Xander picks up Ebeurnus' fallen sword and Maebh sidles over to examine it with him. She quickly determines that this blade grants some kind of power over the corpsewalkers, and it is inscribed with the Carhold sigil on one side of the crossguard and the flag of Elspeth on the other . It is no heirloom however, and seems to be only a few years old at most.

    Spoiler: Carhold
    Show

    All Edmond Carhold ever wanted was to rule. The companions learnt that his own lands surrounding the Carhold had been sacked some time ago, leaving the man landless while serving in his role as the Naillish ambassador to Summer Hill. Knowing that Naille was on the back foot against Elspeth, Carhold secretly threw in his lot with Queen Esmerelda, informing her of the corpsewalker infestation.

    Carhold was promised the lordship of Summer Hill if he aided the forces of Elspeth in the invasion. With the aid of Lady Silverwood and Dhara, he was granted the Corpselord Blade, newly forged in the image of the Gilded Sword which legend says is connected with the Devourers, but inscribed with the sigil of his house and that of Elspeth itself to ensure its loyalty. Esmerelda had her finest artificers dedicate themselves to its forging, using reagents from a corpsewalker Dhara managed to take back to Elspeth.

    Ebeurnus did not agree with the position his lord was taking, but it was his indomitable strength they required to bring the corpsewalkers to heel, and so, once more Lady SIlverwood was called upon, as even with the power of the sword, the walkers only follow those larger and stronger than they. She concocted a potion which would lay the massive warrior low, of an addictive quality which slowly bound the Feartarbh to the control of the one who gave it to him. By the end, he was little more than a mindless husk, bound to the will of Carhold.

    A sad tale indeed.


    Kel'Serrar starts bandaging the handful of wounds the companions have had inflicted upon them and then starts collecting his spent arrows. Harold takes the silvered warhorn hanging from the belt of the mangled remains of Ebeurnus and of course, Xander takes the Corpselord Blade.

    "That was a pretty quick session guys, only like two and a half hours."
    "Oh good. Reckon you'll get it written up on time?" - LD.
    "No, probably not."

    I picked that pretty well.

    The Wrap-Up:
    First of all, I apologise for how long this session took to write up. I have been really, really busy lately, and as such haven't been able to run a game either for several months now.

    Thankfully though, this is changing pretty soon, which should be a bit of fun.

    Thanks again to Sins for putting together the opening quote for this session too.

    Hope everyone enjoyed the read. See you all soon,
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

  19. - Top - End - #199
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Griffon

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: A Norbayne Campaign Log

    We're still alive! Session next weekend!
    Campaign Logs:
    Three Coins, Two Birds and a Gilded Sword: Approximately 30 full sessions so far, with a lot of additional material like side-sessions and artwork.

    The Great Maw:
    Only 3 sessions written up, but with 10 played and more to come.

    Exilian: A friendly place for gamers and repository of interesting content: A link to Exilian. Sign up and say hi!

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