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This will be the page where I detail the first campaign I have ever hosted that was of my own creation, and past middle school. I honestly expected doom and gloom from all the horror stories I've read from other people here on the forums, but what I have found so far is...interesting. Very interesting.
If this is the wrong forum, would a Moderator kindly move this where it's more appropriate?
This was a heavily homebrewed setting with equally heavy homebrew rules and the like, so don't expect these to conform to any one system too well. The world that this adventure is based in can be found here.
So without further ado:
K: K is a very close friend of mine. He's a pretty good RPer and is, like C, deeply enamored of The Spoony One's antics. Thus he wanted to do clever things and be a useful skill monkey to the party. S: S is K's girlfriend and a pretty fly gal (they still say Fly, right?). She's very new to D&D but she has played PC RPGs so we assumed she could handle it. C: C is a fairly new friend I met through K. He's the most experienced among us and managed to build a very powerful character right off the bat. He's deeply paranoid about everything I set in front of him, always looking for a greased hole filled with acid. V: I just met V tonight, and he's quickly grown on me as a player and a friend. Very cool guy, though as new to D&D as S, and has the loudest, most building rumbling laugh I've heard in a while. Also became the Favorite of the Party.
Slepnir Silver-Tongue: K's character. A bard from the frozen north and one of the Isleut, a raider peoples. Called "Viking" by Bohemnir and "Iceman" by Astor, a DMPC. Slepnir is the Face of the party and tries to be an eager skill monkey. Thus far he tends to lead the party, though he often defers to others. Don Peithos: A very naive Halhvannen (Half-Elf) Sorceress who for some reason works with these fools. She acts very calm and peacefully towards others, and is still feeling out who she is. Played by S. Zephyr: C's character and a particularly paranoid/cynical Druid of the Deniri. He tends to look every gift horse in the mouth, bite every coin, and make sure the Bard is constantly sweeping for hidden doors. Has a peculiarly powerful build for a Druid and partly serves as a tank (what is this I don't even). Bohemnir: Played by V. Also known as Bo, the Invisible Hulk! He walked in, wrote up an Elf Monk, dumped everything accept Str, Dex and Con, and proceeded to roll 18's and 16's for his stats. The man is a combat BEAST. Also a bit of a kleptomaniac and has a move silently check through the stratosphere.
The party is a band of Assassins working for the Temple of Nol, the Dread Father. They have been tasked with replacing the previous group of assassins who performed their duties for the city of Icharus. This is very specifically a True Neutral organization.
The big mystery the party has been confronted with has been the assassination of all the assassins. The local priests haven't a clue (and Nol has forbidden their resurrection), and so are willing to defer to the replacements. The one odd thing is that one of the old assassins never turned up, not even a body.
How'd it go?
Oh joy. As we began, an Elf named Astor was leading Slepnir and Don to Icharus. En route they were waylaid by imperial soldiers. The guard botched his bluff check and Slepnir figured these soldiers weren't collecting a lawful toll. He intimidated them to drop the outrageous price from 50 gp (everything they had) to 5. Once the party was past and at the gates to the city, one of the guards there also asked for a toll. When confronted about it, the guard admitted that the previous one was probably the 14th Cohort screwing around for drinking money, but there was nothing he could do about it. The Guard Captain had served with the 14th.
So Slep and Don entered the city and passed by the stables where Zephyr worked. Zephyr was with Bo, the Hulk, and they introduced themselves. They'd been ordered to the city as well. The four hit it off and were ordered to make their way to the Temple of Nol in the temple district by Astor, who left to run his own errands.
This is where my notes ended. I hadn't worked out anything else.
The party decided to visit the Forum. At first they just mulled around the stalls, looking over sheets of contracts and the like. Then Bo decided he wanted to hear what the newsreader was jabbering about. The reader was just talking about some slaves that had fled from Aufidius Lento's home, and gave an advertisement about the grain-workers and sandals. Just some flavor. Nothing special.
And then Bo decided to pick his pocket. In front of the man. And his guards.
If Slepnir wasn't there to convince the armed men that his friend was a simpleton, there would have been a bloodbath. They got out of there quick, though not before they used Don's feminine wiles to lift a magic scroll they spotted. Sure, it was just a scroll of Darkness, but this is a pretty low-level game. Now in the Temple District Bo revealed his awesome power. After a nat20 from Slep revealed that muggers were closing in on the party, Bo slipped away and scaled the side of a building.
When the muggers got close, Don tried to convince them they didn't mean any harm. After Slep yelled that she'd cost them the element of danger with that remark, Bo decided he'd seen enough. He descended upon them like Batman, instantly turning the last mugger into mulch. The second one went down to a combination of Magic Missile and Bo kicking the man's head off his shoulders. The last one got off a startled slash at Bo (2 damage), Slep hurled his spear into the dark alleyway, Don cracked him one with a sling, and Zephyr split his helm with a spear thrust.
The muggers had three daggers and two silver pieces. That's what you get for lingering in an alleyway when the DM wants you to get on with it.
They head to the Temple of Nol where a zombie is out front begging with a bowl. For charity. The priests usher the party inside, Bo finally failed his astounding Move Silent check, and they were brought before the High Priest. He was unimpressed. Specifically, he thought they were a bunch of blockheaded numbskulls who'd be dead in a week. He did point them towards the old home of their predecessors (whose bodies were on display in the temple), and the party was away. On the way out they did note that two of their kills in the alley were already zombies and already holding bowls.
At the old hideout for the previous assassins, the party looked around for clues. Bo rolled beautifully on his silent checks and basically hung around as a 6'5'' Hulking Elf that no one could see, while Slep led the search for clues. After rummaging through the debris, they found a note where the old assassin leader Flavio Massius had written that he wants another of his kind, a lizardman named Castra, to undergo treatment at the temple. He was apparently a little mad. Eventually, they found Flavius' body at the bottom of a staircase hidden from vies. He had scrawled a letter that appeared to be an "F" on the wall. Castra's body was not discovered, and the party and the priests believe he may have something to do with this.
The party made sure to head to the next place they were told to by one of the Priests: The Sloppy Mare Tavern. There they met a Brutum bartender (imagine an entire race of Klingon-Shaquille-O'neals) named Jok who was an ex-assassin. He showed off his peg leg, and answered some of their questions regarding Castra, mostly confirming the poor guy was a conspiracy nut and probably stayed in the sun too long. Still, the general antics of a huge, hulking bartender reciting the drill sergeant bits from Full Metal Jacket got Bo to laugh himself silly and finally lose his move silent check. Jok just congratulated him on being so stealthy "for such a big bastard!" and offered him and the others free drinks. The druid purified the water as best he could (it tended to rot metal spoons), but Slep got himself horribly drunk.
They decided to call it a night and work things out later, though not before Slepnir rolled a natural 20 on a perform check and brought the house down with "Freebird". Of course there were only two or three people in the bar, but that was okay.
This was some of the most fun I've ever had, and even C thought I was the best DM he'd ever been with. After a wildly successful night, we've decided to continue playing next Thursday, when I'll update again.
So we had to take a week-long break for some of our players to get work done, so we now return to our regularly scheduled adventure!
Our intrepid...um...assassins got to look around the city, figure out how things worked, found their predecessors' blood sprayed all across their bedroom, and decided that an Elven Monk with 20's in Strength and Constitution (Homebrew races) and an exceptionally high Move Silently Check means that they're traveling with Death Incarnate. Also, the Bard screwed up and drank the beer, becoming blindingly drunk due to a failed Fort save.
The saga continues
So the party wakes up in the Sloppy-Mare Inn to the sight of their friend Astor hovering over them. He explains that Bo left early in the morning for something, though he didn't ask what he was doing. The Party was given a short list of missions, one being a summons to the Collegia in the market (the Elven Mafia) and the other being a plea from some woman living in the Narrows, a particularly nasty part of town (though not the worst).
They headed to the woman's house, learning her name was Dilihla, and that she was the wife of the guard who robbed them at the false-Toll when they got to the city. Turns out he was an abusive git and she was with another man's child (Lucius Varro, Petros' friend).
Magnificent, said Slepnir. They took half the payment (20 silver) since they figured gutting her husband Petros would be just as rewarding. They immediately left for the Forum, beating up on a pickpocket when he tried to cut Slepnir's purse. For some reason (my fault, I'm sure) they kept asking around about those slaves that fled from Aufidius Lento, the flavor text from earlier. Well...I started to think I should put something there, just so they didn't feel stupid for constantly asking about it.
Anyway, the get to the Forum and they see a huge blood smear on one of the columns to a building. The column was watched by guards while someone tried to clean the stuff, but Peithos was able to convince one of them to talk. Apparently some old, distinguished elf was crucified there last night.
Taking that info they headed to the market, but found very little of value (I hadn't had time to come up with anything good there, and Magic items would have been sold at the Mage's College). Eventually though someone barged into a shop they were in and flipped right out. "When the Collegia sends you a message telling you ta show up, YA SHOW UP!"
So they get dragged to the Collegia by, like, twelve thugs. When they get there, they get the whole story about how the elf who died was the Elven community leader, a Godfather of sorts. He was killed by four Deniri men (gathered with Speak with Dead) in retaliation for the death of a similar figure among the Blue Crescents, a Deniri clan who basically runs the Narrows.
The Collegia doesn't want to start a shooting war if they can find the culprits and publicly make an example of them (spook the Crescents into not attacking). The Party ventures off on some leads (a Deniri Leader named Cabo who might be helpful, and the Elven crew of The Ruby, a ship at the docks.) On the way there, they stumble across a horde of Deniri carrying their fallen leader's body. It's here that the party recognizes the corpse as one they found lying in an alleyway their first day in the city.
They sneak past the horde, but realize the mob is heading towards the Elves. Zephyr orders his Monkey companion to carry a note to the Elves warning of the attack.
While the party makes their way towards the Narrows, the Monkey was engaged in a skill contest to outrun the mob. Throughout the session I would have Zephyr make another check to see if his Monkey fell behind or outran the mob for another block. It got exceptionally intense after a while, with the players actually groaning when they had to take control of their characters because they were enjoying the racing sequence so much. The monkey actually missed a jump once, landed at an open window, and had to race through a room full of women sewing clothes (and throwing things at the monkey) in order to make up time. Eventually, near the end of the night, the Monkey made it to the Elves and collapsed from exhaustion. Through their Link, Zephyr was able to report to the group on what was going on with his Monkey, and got to watch the huge battle that ended up happening between a ravenous Deniri mob and a prepared Elven defense.
The Party decided to hit Petros first while they were in The Hole, a part of the city that was made up of tall, sturdy buildings due to the fact that most the lower levels were underwater during certain months. Petros (who in the meantime had left them a message asking them to kill his best friend since he thought Lucius was sleeping with his wife) liked to visit a pub in the Hole, since there the crooked guards maintained a powerful presence as their own mafia.
They managed to arrange Petros to lead Lucius into an empty street on their way home, where Slepnir hogtied Lucius and Zephyr slit Petros' throat. Lucius also got gutted while screaming about how they were just supposed to kill Petros (both guys definitely deserved what happened, and both had payed for the hit). The party figured Dilihla didn't like either man, since she asked if they could kill Lucius too.
The Party ended up racing against the clock again though, since the Deniri mob lost the brawl, and were being herded back to the Narrows. The party managed to get back into the Sloppy Mare and barricade the doors. I basically said that they were trapped for two days while the Narrows partly burned around them (metaphorically, sort of).
When they reached the Inn of course they were suddenly contacted by a woman, the runaway slave of Aufidius Lento. She asked them to kill her former master (offering his mountains of gold in payment). Feeling generous (and a bit greedy) they said yes.
The Party is going to figure out what happened to the elf Godfather, and then plan a heist/assassination!
So, what do people think? Interesting? Not interesting?