Chronicle: The Forgotten Realms

Discussion in 'Silver Flagon Tavern' started by Yndrofian, Oct 9, 2016.

By Yndrofian on Oct 9, 2016 at 10:19 PM
  1. Yndrofian

    Yndrofian Powerful Silver Dragon

    Talon of the Crest
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    My fellow dragons, behold!

    A new adventure awaits. A saga will be chronicled and you will have front row seats! Watch and read as the story develops.

    Six brave souls will face dangers and mysteries in an unknown world. Strategizing, fighting, and working their way to answers which they hope will solve their most dire problem.

    Who are these brave souls? Why do they have such problems? The video below will begin to answer these questions. Follow this thread for weekly or bi-weekly updates!

     
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Discussion in 'Silver Flagon Tavern' started by Yndrofian, Oct 9, 2016.

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    1. Seldonia
      Seldonia
      .
      Family. It's a funny word if you really think about it. Family usually means a group of individuals bound together by the same bloodline. A unit that grows together and share similar views and values. Except for Seldae. She never felt as if she fit with her family unit.

      She was born as all of her kind were, in the Underdark and with great ceremony. Seldae was the fifth daughter of seven, much as her mother was the same. That would be the only thing they shared between them. All aspects of their lives were on the opposite spectrum thereafter.

      Her family were devote followers of Llolth and were quite prominent in society due to their strong willed women. Seldae's Mother was a high priestess among the followers of Llolth and her sisters were falling in line right behind her.

      Seldae had done as she was taught by her mother and sisters before her but, somehow, it never felt right to her. Sure she knew the history, she had been schooled in it since birth, she knew the religious rites as they were practiced daily. Seldae went through the motions but never felt as connected to what she was doing as the rest of her family. She despised her family more than expected because of it.



      It wasn't until the most unlikely of sources enlightened her that she understood why. Caspar had been a slave to Seldae's family for all of her thirty six years. He was a Human captured and bought on the market by her mother when he was a young man. Seldae had secretly taking a liking to the man and felt sorry for him. She would sneak food to him when she was younger and spent time speaking with him out of ear and eye-shot of the rest of the family as she grew older. He had fallen ill and at his advanced age it did not seem he would recover.

      Taking a dire chance Seldae had gone to see him as his illness took it's last turn. Closing and locking the door behind her, she sat on a stool next to the bed. Caspar's eyes visibly brightened, and with a weak voice he said, "Dear mistress, all these years you have treated me with kindness, for that I am eternally grateful. Have I ever told you the story behind my capture? Why I was in Waterdeep that fateful day?" Seldae only shook her head no.

      His answer was one word at first, "Qilué." Seldae was quite puzzled and her expression must have shown it, she answered the only way she knew how, "I don't understand what that is." The dying man's smile made him look worse, "Not what but Who." Seldae's eyebrows raised questioningly, "Okay, who. I don't know who that is."

      Caspar reached over and took her hand in his, "It's you. She is in you. I saw it the first time you brought me food and I have watched it grow ever since." Seldae was now quite convinced the man was losing his mind, that the sickness was eating his brain as well as his body. She looked at him a mixture of confusion and pity on her face.

      Caspar cleared his throat with a deep body twisting cough. When it finally subsided he continued, "Eresseae Qilué Silverhand, was a priestess of Elistraee, the goddess of good aligned Drow. It was her followers I was in search of when I came to Waterdeep. I believe that it was my inquiries about them that led to my capture." He coughed again, this time he sprayed some blood on the sheets. Seldae could see he was getting worse before her eyes but the story he was telling was too intriguing to let it end. "Tell me more," she pushed for further information.

      He told her all he knew about Qilué and her followers. It took time to get it all out as his coughing fits grew longer and closer together. Seldae knew he was suffering but wanted all his knowledge. So many possibilities and questions ran through her mind and she pushed to get as many answered as she could. Caspar's speech slowed and he started to drift in and out of consciousness. He was not much longer for this world of this Seldae was quite positive. As Caspar slipped in to sleep one last time Seldae thought about all that he had told her. Good aligned drow? Was there such a thing?



      She formulated a plan in her head, one that would help her find the answers to her questions and also get her away from her family. She grabbed a pillow and smothered Caspar face. There was no fight and he slipped quietly in to his death. "Step one complete. Never leave alive those that can hurt you." That was a lesson her mother had taught her all her life. One that she was never sure of until this moment. "Sorry old man, your weakened mind might make your mouth work when it shouldn't." She removed the pillow from his face. Caspar looked peaceful, a look Seldae had never seen on his face before. She turned without another thought of him and headed toward her second step of the plan.

      With a rucksack of her belongings on her back Seldae entered the grand entrance. Some of the remaining slaves were cleaning the floors on their hands and knees. Seldae stepped to the closest one, "Stand up!" she said in a stern voice, watching as the slave did so without hesitation. Looking the smaller man straight in the face she said, "Tell Matron Akorae, that I am leaving for Skullport to acquire a new slave to replace Caspar. I will return when I have found a suitable replacement." The news of Caspar's death hit the slave at that moment and he looked saddened. "Do not dawdle or you shall meet a similar fate not long from now." This seemed to snap him out of his mourning and he nodded his head before stepping aside to allow Seldae to pass.

      Seldae knew Imtran's caravan came through twice weekly, once heading out of the port, filled with wares and goods, and once heading back to port, empty or close to it. This had been the cycle Seldae has known for years. Imtran generally does not stop at every village or city on the way back as there is not much to sell. However, Seldae's village was a resting spot for the animals and she used this to her advantage.

      She approached Imtran and spoke with him briefly. After a bit of haggling and an exchange of money Seldae had a safe passage to the final stop of Skullport. Along the route Seldae kept busy gathering what information she could. She questioned some of the merchants in the caravan about Skullport and what she could expect to find there. Only when she felt it safe did she add some off-hand comments about Qilue and her followers. Caspar had told her he had heard there might be a temple in and around Skullport. Her inquiries had given that possibility not only a truth but a name as well, The Promenade. One of the merchants with the caravan had not only heard of the place, he had seen it. He told Seldae all he knew after a bit of money changed hands. The final part of the plan had fallen in to place.



      That was fifty years ago today. Seldae had found the Promenade and had set herself to learning. She was a fast student and quickly rose through the ranks there becoming a Cleric of Elistraee. Her work had brought her to the upper surface on multiple ocassions. The first of which was the most painful experience of her life. Her eyes burned as she was blinded by the bright sunlight. Her skin dried quickly and deep cracks formed on the upper most layer. It was all part of the ritual. The more time she spent in the sunlight the easier it got for her to recover once going below ground again.

      After time Seldae could spend whole days without issue, taking small breaks in the shade for relief. She found that the people in the world on the surface treated her with disdain at first sight. The dark color of her skin and her red eyes put people on edge. It wasn't until she would start helping them in ways that they couldn't help themselves that they eased their minds and allowed Seldae to do her work.

      Oh what work she has done. She has healed the masses old and young, rich and poor. It was a life she knew she was meant for and since birth, this is the happiest she had ever been. Recently, Seldae had heard a group of her peers were going to Anauroch. There have been reports that artifacts from the great battle between the Chosen of Mystra and the Phaerimms had been unearthed by the shifting winds. Seldae could not consciously pass up such an opportunity to see such wonders and worked her way in to the group just before they departed.
      Last edited: Oct 16, 2016
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    2. Thumbdrive
      Thumbdrive



      Kinsyn Thalon, was raised by Oghma clerics in a monastery upon the Thunder Peaks. Since he was five, he had been taught by these monks, that with his blade, he can bring forth hidden knowledge of the world. As he matured, he learned that thousands of years of knowledge slept within the ruins and caves of Faerun. His enclave of paladins, the “Shield of Oghma,” believed that through their pursuit of relics and artifacts, they served their god by unveiling their power to the world. These Paladins, explored the furtherest reaches of the realm and did not allow anything, even if it meant their own life, to impede their path.


      Kinsyn, was known among his unit as a fierce, although compassionate, warrior of Oghma. He has delivered blood to the battlefield on numerous occasions, often even with overwhelming odds against him. Kinsyn feared nothing, for he knew, Oghma guided his path. Like the clerics research their ancient scrolls, and a wizard studies his spell book, Kinsyn wields his blade, and will raise it against all those that obstruct his pursuits, in the name of his god.


      Recently, his order was sent on an assignment to Hulburg. Once financing had been secured for this expedition he sought out a ship that will get his unit to their destination. Within Sulzail, there certainly wasn’t any shortage of ships and crews, but they needed a swift ship, a discrete crew, and a sign, from Oghma.


      Kinsyn sat one evening within Bindle’s Tavern. He was amused by the sailor playing his lute, singing in the old tongue. A lost language only few in this region were familiar. This, he felt was a sign from Oghma! Kinsyn, joined this man in the song……


      Kinsyn felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand on end. He knew Oghma’s voice was being delivered through this fellows music. So inspiring. So much passion. Kinsyn quickly bonded with this man for he sang with an honest heart.


      When the song came to an end, Kinsyn and Xiin shared a pint of ale. Kinsyn discussed his mission and a deal had been brokered. Xiin gave instructions to meet at the docks aboard a ship he called “The Messenger”.
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    3. Sook
      Sook
      : Xiin has been a man of the sea since he was a young lad. His father, as well as his father’s father, all men that have lived, as well as died, by the life they chose on the rough “Sea of Fallenstars.” For the last 12 years Xiin has served as a shipman aboard a modest trader called “The Messenger”. She was a sturdy ship indeed, but well beyond her prime. Generally, her cargo was simply citrus fruit, which traveled from the Gulf of Luiren by land and was later retrieved by the crew in southern ports throughout the Sea of Fallenstars. Due to her short draft, she was a swift little cog easily able to out pace local pirates. Her crew was very seasoned. Citrus trading however has been tough, with profit margins thinning with each season. “The Seven Suns Traders” taxed the hell out of imports coming into Suzail. Times were hard.


      During the cold winter months, Xiin made his living singing wildly exaggerated tales of his adventures on the high seas. He generally preferred Bindle’s Tavern, in the royal city of Suzail, since it frequented some of the more affluent of merchants, they were, after all, the best tippers in the city. Not to mention, Xiin liked to keep a close eye and ear on the the rising and falling demand of various commodities. Rubbing elbows with these business types helped keep his flagon full.


      Xiin had a gift, he can sell Tel-quessir lumber to copper elves. Those that knew em, saw him as a scoundrel. Those that didn’t, an honest, sincere, businessman, and musician. To men, a lying, despicable, untrustworthy, swashbuckler, chasing the nearest copper piece… To the ladies, a poet, song writer, and musician. Xiin, let’s just say, was all of the above.


      One evening, a year to the day, a representative from an organization calling themselves the “Shield of Oghma” approached him in Bindle’s Tavern. They were seeking a ship that would deliver them to Hulburg in the north. They offered a hearty payment for this voyage. These, “Shield of Oghma” folk were religious researchers and warriors, in the business of recovering ancient relics. This is exactly what the crew of “The Messenger” was seeking! Times were hard, and these religious folk were paying in jewels!


      Later that winter………


      Lightening pierced the obsidian sky followed by the booming crashes of deep thunder. There was a chill in the night. The icy sea winds pierced to the bone. This band of hardened warriors aboard Xiin’s ship, have been at sea now for 3 long days. Within her belly, relics retrieved in the name of their god, bound for the royal city of Suzail in southern Cormyr. Home.


      The ships captain looked grimly at the thundering sky ahead. These were bad omens he thought. In the back of his mind he felt, perhaps, the cargo was cursed. With a shout, the captain rang the order, “Bard, lead us in song! Sing us through this storm!”





      Xiin nodded and retrieved his drum. With the salty sea permeating the air, he sat among these warriors. He closed his eyes. These defenders of ancient knowledge, these warriors of Oghma, deserved a song in the ancient style. They deserved the song of their god. Xiin knew these lyrics would fill their hearts with fire and inspire courage within their soul. For this, was going to be a rough night. The Sea of Fallenstars was notorious for consuming lives… it has taken his father, and his father’s father.


      Xiin, slowly beat his drum. And sang:


      Kinsyn Thelon, the young paladin among this band of warriors smiled grimly as the song filled him with warmth. He too, as well as his brothers in arms, joined the bard in song. The powerful seas hammered the small cog through the night, but the old sea bones held. Waves towered over the deck and then slammed into the men, holding on for dear life….yet the men sang.


      As the song came to and end….and the thundering roar of the sea was all that remained. Xiin stared off the starboard bow, and the sight caused all the blood in his face to vanish, he felt a cold chill in his spine. A rogue wave, eight times the height of the ship. This was it. As the wave towered over head, he saw young Kinsyn Thelon reach desperately into his pack. His lips were moving rapidly, Xiin couldn’t understand what was said… Suddenly, a bright flashing light…..then total blackness.


      He heard these words echoing in his head as he swirled within the unconscious void, as if a whisper....





      Xiin, awoke face down on a beach. Small waves crashing over him. Coughing up sea water, he sat up.


      There, sitting on the beach near him, wiping the water from his eyes, was the young paladin, Kinsyn Thalon.


      Xiin asked, “How is it that we live?”


      Kinsyn stared blankly as Xiin, “I don’t know.”
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    4. Syrbryce
      Syrbryce
      (Origin of Prettymad Squirrell)
      Prettymad Squirrell was born to nomadic traders in Amn. Her family came under attack when she was very little by a band of Kobolds. She was the only survivor. Another caravan took her in and named her Squirrel because she was so little. Once she started growing up, her temper would flare up, especially when taunted about her size, and she took down the strongest of her antagonists with swift and deliberate strikes to their ankles and knees. One of her opponents said, “Whoa, that Squirrel is Pretty mad!”, and the name stuck.

      Growing restless in the caravan of peddlers, Prettymad decided to go adventuring and teamed up with a band of like-minded folks that roamed the Forgotten Realms.

      Battledale, Dalelands


      Prettymad ducked under the lumbering humans grasp and kicked hard to his left knee. Rolling to her left she popped up and gave a knee to the jaw of her staggering opponent. As he started to fall backwards, Prettymad sent him across the floor with a spinning sidekick that sent him into the far table that had been moved for the bout.

      “Well, that's number seven! Who's to be my number eight?” shouted Prettymad. The loud cheering around the room died swiftly when the other guards saw their comrade slip into unconsciousness under the table. Sullen whispers and cursing murmured about the room as the other soldiers returned to their tables and drinks. “So, that's it then? No one interested in getting back their money?” taunted Prettymad. “Fine, you bunch of girl's blouses! I'll find some better sport in the next tavern.”

      Outside the tavern two guards stand in her way. A third guard, actually the captain approaches her. “I think it's time for you to move on. I'm having a tough time covering all the watch schedules with half of my men in the infirmary,” said the captain.

      “I'm helping train yer stupid guards, besides, I need to make some more gold before I can leave,” exclaimed Prettymad.

      The other two guards bristled at her comment but the captain chuckled a bit, “Yes, they have definitely learned a little about wrestling halflings as well as some humility. Tell ya what, I'll kick in a months guard wages and a guard spot in a caravan that is going to Waterdeep for you to move along.”

      “And if I refuse?” questioned Prettymad. “Well, we could always use a dungeon workout program, but I don't think that would be very fun for you.” the captain said narrowing his eyes. The other guards sneered a bit at his comment.

      Prettymad shrugged, “Alright, you got a deal. Wasn't going to find to many more bouts anyway.”

      The next morning, with her purse a little heavier, she reported to the caravan heading to Waterdeep.
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    5. Thraxes
      Thraxes


      Sit back and hear the sorrowful tale of Corin’s past

      Corin was a born to a blind father and a very ugly orc mother in the foothills of the Spine of the World. This relationship upset not just the Humans but the Orcs as well. Corin was a direct insult to King Obould Many-Arrows grand plan to reshape what he had planned for the grand Orc society. Out of fear for Corin’s safety he was sent away to hide him from the danger that he faced. He was brought to the Dalelands where he his great skill with an axe was put to use as a lumberjack felling trees with a single blow. Being separated from his family only fueled his anger for those that forced his banishment. The anger and hate bubbled over and allowed him to allowed him to display great feats of strength. Several years had passed and a message arrived from his human family. they might not have approved of his birth but they had enough respect to tell him that his parents were brutally slaughtered. Many people had different ideas on who had tortured his parents but it was clear it was a message from King Obould Many-Arrows, that only approved Orc behavior would be allowed. When he finished reading the message he grabbed his axe and swore upon all that he held dear he would destroy everyone that played a part in the death of his family. Corin used what money he had and booked a ride on the first caravan headed to the spine of the world where he could exact his revenge on all involved.
    6. Yndrofian
      Yndrofian



      A sharp metallic tap-tapping noise rang out from the front door of the workshop. Through the front door one could see all manner of tools, gadgets, and bottled fluids. One gnome attended the front counter and it seemed the whole of the front of the shop was used for storage which would have been proven true if one could see into the back room where an variety of immaculate workstations were set up.

      The workshop itself was a fine establishment, manned by a handful of the best craftsmen in Sambar, and situated on a very busy corner in the marketplace. Arguably , the best miscellaneous repair and workshop in Lantan, Correlan Calibrators was a very successful family owned and operated business. It specialized in repairing and even increasing the effectiveness of all the inventions that gnomish ingenuity could throw at them. Often times they did all their work in the back of the shop while other times the contraptions were too large to transport; they would then work on site.

      There was no reason Yndrofiun should have been standing at the front counter unhappily twiddling with an assortment of tools. He, like his siblings, were some of the best tinkerers around and were well compensated for it. Yndrofiun preferred to use the term 'tinkerer to describe his family's trade,' but he used it exclusively in his head. If his father heard it then he would have to spend even more time at the front counter watching the shadows outside shorten then lengthen and occasionally helping a customer. They didn't get many customers, but those they did get paid well and expected to be helped immediately and treated very well.

      Tinkerer.

      He just couldn't let it go. That's all his family did was tinker. Sure they were, he was, very talented and they made great improvements on some amazing inventions, but it was all the same thing and none of it was new, original. They fixed other peoples' gadgets, never made their own. Tinkerers.

      Besides this, or perhaps corollary to this, was Yndrofiun's penchant for the arcane. Since early in his life he has been able to sense, in a way, the weave. Simple magic, like cantrips, came to him without having studied it. He just picked it up by watching others, like street performers or festival attractions. While far from the most athletic or agile of gnomes, his fingers were quite deft which enabled him to not only be a great 'tinkerer,' but also enabled him to cast what few cantrips he knew so subtly it was difficult to determine their origin.

      Tinkerer.

      How his father hated that term; it was so demeaning and belittling of not only the profession but also of the skills that took decades to develop. Yet a tinkerer is all Yndrofiun saw it as... saw himself as. He spoke with his father, very diplomatically and strategically, about wizardry and apprenticing, always talking more in passing and about other people in other situations, and what he gleaned was always the same. His father respected wizards and believed some people were destined to learn the arcane arts, but he and his family were not those people. They were skilled craftsman, renown in Lantan and earning a more than comfortable living doing things that kept them safe and out of trouble.

      Yndrofiun wanted to study magic, though. He loved the feel of the weave as he took it from its base form and molded it into his choosing, even if it was just a disembodied voice from the corner of the room. The rush of taking such power and creating something from it, something original and new, is what drove him. His father, though, would not stand for it. Yndrofiun did not ask directly, for fear of reprisal, but he knew it, so he purposed to quietly leave Lantan

      Ideally, he would go to the sister island of Orlil, where many gnome wizards learned, taught, and created, but that was too close to home. Only trouble would come of that. Instead Yndrofiun, using his small stature and meager cantrips, snuck on board a human trading vessel headed... somewhere.

      By no means was this day an impulsive decision. This day had been gnawing at his soul for years. He chose to stow away rather than book passage to deter his family from finding him. Many doubts, justifications, and questions like this plagued him all the way to the ship's final destination. The ship stopped at a few ports, but he was unable to sneak away due to the amount of activity from crates leaving and coming onto the ship. Finally the ship was nearly empty of cargo and sailors so he scampered off the ship and onto the docks. It did not take him long to figure out where he was. Waterdeep.

      He had taken what was his from Lantan, nothing more, and while that was a decent amount, it would not last forever and would not buy him an apprenticeship. He found a place to stay and a shop that would pay him well enough for his expert tinkering services, but it was just a stepping stone he told himself.

      Waterdeep was one of the best places that ship could have gone. It was easy for him to hide among all the people, it had demand enough for his skills to keep his income flowing, and it had wizards aplenty. Finding one that wouldn't sear him to a crisp or even speak to him was another thing all together. But Yndrofiun was an intelligent creature. What he couldn't get easily he could manipulate and work the different tangential angles to create an opportunity which he would then take. People were so much like machines; after you figure out how they work, you can tweak things, then wind them up and watch them go.

      In this way did he secure his apprenticeship. A few days in, his master figured out Yndrofiun's machinations, but kept him on anyway since he had done it so well. The worked well, together, master and apprentice. Yndrofiun studied very hard, followed instructions to the letter, and quickly learned many basic spells.

      Soon, though, his money began to run out. He had spoken of this with this master, and while his master was a decent man, he was also a powerful wizard and powerful wizards keep expensive habits in arcane lore, objects, and rare spell ingredients. Yndrofiun would need to secure more funding.

      According to his master, this was working out well. That statement confused Yndrofiun, but his master explained that multiple times throughout his apprentices' tenure he would send them out on an adventure. This served many things but the two most important were that it gave the master time alone to develop new spells and it gave the apprentice real world experience, a chance to apply what they’ve learned. In Yndrofiun's case, it could also be the chance to join an adventuring company and go search for treasure. If he could find a suitable magical artifact, it would grant him more time under the tutelage of his master.

      Hoping to get his feet wet with something a little less risky than an all out treasure-hunting monster-killing adventure, Yndrofiun took a position as one of the wizards for a caravan headed to the Dalelands. While it was unlikely he would find what he wanted in just this trip, they were going through the Anauroch Desert, where the ancient Netherese flying cities crashed and left untold legendary magic behind. There was a chance he would find what he wanted out in the desert.
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    7. Yndrofian
      Yndrofian


      The sands of the Anauroch have always been a treacherous place. Whether it be a band of raiders or the harsh environment, danger is ever present. With the return of the Shade Enclave to the area a few years ago and the advent of the spellplague, this danger has taken on new meaning. Only the brave, the foolish, or the ignorant seek treasure from the Anauroch these days, and there is no shortage of each.

      Well to the west of the Anauroch Desert lies the famed city of Waterdeep. Known as the most important trading hub of the central to northern reaches of Faerûn, Waterdeep plays host to more merchants than the Spine of the World has Orcs. One merchant in particular had a misunderstanding with some Drow... only the Drow don't misunderstand and this put the merchant in a very difficult position. Some might call this a unique position for large gains while others would call it impossibly desperate. Regardless, to fulfill his obligation and keep his head, he needed to get his goods to the Dalelands and back in a very unreasonable amount of time.

      As Tymora would have it, he found enough brave, ignorant, and foolish adventurers to escort his caravan. He also found these adventurers, besides being brave, ignorant, and foolish, were very greedy. Maybe they could smell the desperation, but it did not matter; his options were limited and it is hard to spend any gold at all when you're dead. The only good thing about it was also a bad thing. It was summer, a great time to trade and travel, if the normal trade routes were taken.

      But this particular merchant didn't have the time to take the safer routes. He planned to head due east to the Dalelands. His route would take him through a little known, little used pass through the Greypeak Mountains, straight across the Anauroch Desert, and into the Dalelands. The easy part is that if he keeps the sun in his face in the morning and at his back in the evening, he will make it there. The hard part is .... all the other parts. This would have to be a fast journey which means little sleep. The shorter route also carries with it significant threat from bandits and monsters.

      To protect his goods, the merchant hired half again as many guards as he normally does. Of note, in this company was a small group of mostly Drow priestesses of Elistraee and a couple initiates, a particularly dense half-orc with rage issues, and a quiet gnome who practiced magic regardless of the instability of the weave. A handful of bowmen, swordsmen, and cavalry bolstered the ranks giving them a very intimidating appearance.

      It worked too. The caravan had no threats from its start in Waterdeep all the way to the Dalelands. After unloading his goods, the merchant restocked with supplies and more wares to resell in Waterdeep. Some of the caravan guards bid their farewell and continued their journey, happy to be paid so well for such an easy job. Others, soon after having found the bottom of too many flagons of ale, found themselves in shackles for things they would never remember and no one else would ever repeat.

      Not unused to this, the merchant began recruiting. Among the new hires was one shifty halfling with anger issues. While the half-orc would go berserk in the heat of battle, this little one seemed to have a chip on her shoulder bigger than she was. Often, though, they make for great short-term contract work. After filling the empty spots the caravan headed back to Waterdeep by the same route.

      Early into the first night's rest a pair of figures appeared on the road ahead. Attention was called and the guards readied themselves. The pair, having very much seen what was going on with the back light of the campfire, held up their arms and declared their peace, even asking for food and water. One of them happened to be a bard which made for the most fun-filled evening that caravan has seen since Waterdeep. By the next morning the bard and his paladin friend were given shelter: no pay, but food, water, and a place to sleep on the way to Waterdeep.

      As the new arrivals debated whether to stay with the caravan and continue to Waterdeep or to find their way back home to Suzail, one of the Drow priestesses approached them.

      "You should come with us," she stated. She then bowed her head and walked away. The bard looked at the paladin and the paladin nodded once. Waterdeep was their new destination.

      It was days into the return trip and it could not have been better had Tymora herself been a passenger in the caravan, except for one small problem.

      One night as their mounts, and as many others that could, rested, a pink purple ribbon of light simply appeared in the sky halfway to the horizon. Like a neon sidewinder slithering across the sky it moved toward them. The closer it got the bigger it got. Not just in perspective, but it was actually growing longer and wider as it approached. Most everyone awake recognized it as the spellplague manifest, the Weave buckling and heaving in its instability.

      Some people welcome such an event with the hope of coming out the other side reborn with supernatural powers, most people run the other way, and the few that have seen it before and survived realized there really is only one thing to do. Nothing. If you have a deity you serve, prayer is a viable option, not for deliverance though, but for your soul to find its way home and not get lost in the oblivion of nothingness.

      Of the brave, foolish, and ignorant adventurers in the caravan that night, most were running away, some were praying, and a couple, while not running toward the disaster, were silently welcoming it. What followed was almost a beautiful cacophony of audible anger, fear, and anticipation: perfectly predictable chaos.

      By morning, most everyone had regrouped at the caravan. The events of last night too fresh in their minds to talk about, most of them wandered about camp picking up the mess. The mess, not caused by the spellplague as it seemed mostly to pass overhead, was made by the adventurers as they panicked and ran desperately for their lives. Eventually things were cleaned up and people accounted for.

      The priestesses were missing one of their own. The half-orc's stench was noticeably absent. Of the handful of replacement security they found in the Dalelands, the paladin of Oghma and his musical companion were nowhere to be found. Also among those who disappeared were the quiet wizard and the angry little halfling.
      Sook, Syrbryce and Seldonia like this.
    8. Yndrofian
      Yndrofian



      Chapter One
      The Incident





      As he slowly woke, he realized he was prone. Much as he would like, moving anything at this point, even his eyelids, was impossible. It seemed he couldn't connect his brain with his body. So much disorientation. Why?


      His face was cold and wet. No, it was hot and dry. By the gods,! he thought. And the harder he thought the more he hurt. Mostly it was his head that throbbed, but his extremities were also sending mixed signals. One second they tingled and the next they were numb followed very quickly by an intermittent sharp stabbing or a dull pounding. Although what confused him most was the cold hot.


      Finally, he managed to open his eyes. Too late he realized his mistake as the morning sun blasted him in the eyes forcing him to shut them again. His headache intensified at that, but what he saw confused him even more. A beach.


      He was lying on his side on a beach, waves pushing past his cheek on one side and the sun baking the other. Taking a moment to relax and stop trying so hard, he let his thoughts slide around until they settled into an understandable notion. The surroundings began to form in his mind and with that he realized he was able to hear. Had he been deaf or just ignoring the sounds? A thought for later, he decided. His legs and arms began to reply to his will, though reluctantly and with much painful protest.


      He pushed himself to his hands and knees and opened his eyes. Yes, a beach. The surf was chilly and the morning sun promised a warm afternoon. He planted himself in a sitting position with the sun at his back and began considering his circumstance when he saw someone coming toward him. Looking around he noticed the beach was strewn with washed up flotsam and when he looked closer he noticed bodies among the debris. As the figure approached another figure stepped out from behind him. Both now coming toward him.


      Too tired and weak to bother doing anything else other than watch them, he noticed as the first figure got closer that he wore full plate armor while the one who flanked him was more outfitted for a grand ceremony except that he looked like he had been drug through a field and a desert behind a rampaging horse then left out in the rain all night. Both looked more worried and confused than threatening.


      “Well met, friend,” said the armored man. “Are you injured?”


      “Besides feeling like I spent the last month as a plaything in an ogre nursery, I think I’m unhurt,” he replied.


      “That is good. My name is Kinsyn. This is my… business partner, Xiin,” he replied.


      “I’m Yndrofiun. Well met,” Yndrofiun said. Then, after a pause and hoping for some answers to his own reason for being on the beach, he added, “All apologies for my poor manners, but you seem as disheveled as I. What happened to you?”


      Kinsyn looked concernedly at Xiin. “Go on. I’ll get this,” Xiin said. Yndrofiun turned to watch Kinsyn walk past and down the beach. He was headed directly to the first of the other bodies. As Yndrofiun turned back, Xiin started to explain, “Kinsyn found me like he found you, and he found himself the same way.”


      Indicating all the debris with an outstretched arm, Yndrofiun asked, “Did your ship wreck? Is that what all this is?”


      “We don’t know. The last thing we remember is the desert--”


      “Yes! A desert! I remember that too,” Yndrofiun blurted. “And… I was… I was… we were going somewhere. I remember the desert and a red-pink light…. Oh, again, I’m so sorry for my poor manners. Excuse my interruption, please. I am very perplexed by all of this.”


      “As are we. Would you care to join me as I catch up to Kinsyn and help him look for survivors?” Xiin asked.


      “Yes, I would love to help. Maybe it will help my memory. At the very least, it will keep me productive rather than sitting here cold and wet,” Yndrofiun said. He stood up, with a little help from Xiin, and they both hurried after Kinsyn as fast as Yndrofiun’s aching gnome legs would take them.


      During this conversation, Kinsyn had found someone else. At first, he thought it was an extra-large burlap sack of grain lying on the beach, then it turned over and opened its eyes. Kinsyn was surprised to see it was in fact a half-orc. Not that they are particularly rare, but seeing one washed up on a beach implied they were at sea and that is a bit unusual. The half-orc sat up and stretched, moaning and groaning as if he just woke up from a very fulfilling night's sleep, “Ahh. Mmm. Hnnnng,” The noises seemed to go on for minutes and Kinsyn was almost mesmerized by the display.


      Like a fawn stretching out its legs for the first time and trying to walk or a bird testing out its wings and trying to determine their function, the half-orc continued to stretch and vocalize, “Hm. Urgh. Ahhmuumm,” until he finally opened his eyes. Aside from the clear surprise of his surroundings, the presence of a fully armored human standing beside him startled him, “Ah! Fibblekicker bonstobish! Apinna hornslap! What!? Who??!” He fumbled for his great axe, which was lying right beside him.


      “Easy friend. Be at peace. I mean you no harm,” Perhaps it was the absurd and inexplicable scenario or the sincerity behind the man’s words, but whichever cause it was, the effect was marked. Corin planted his axe head in the ground and used the haft to pull himself up.


      “You surprised me. I could have killed you. You should be more careful,” The half-orc said.


      “Yes, I was careless. Please accept my apologies. My name is Kinsyn.” The half-orc answered with a hmph and a nod of his head. Kinsyn continued, “Are you injured? Do you know how you came about lying on this beach?”


      “I’m Corin. I’m not injured and I was sleeping then I woke up here. Where is here? I can’t remember anything, but I know that this is not where I want to be. It’s not where I was going. Where is here?” The half-orc asked.


      A female voice then spoke up, “Good morning. I had a feeling I would see you again.” Both men turned to see a drow walking toward them with a halfling not far behind. If this morning had not been as bizarre as it was, both Kinsyn and Corin would probably have armed themselves in defense at the appearance of the drow, but instead they looked at the drow and then the halfling, then at each other and almost shrugged.


      “Heya,” greeted the halfling, “I’m Prettymad.”


      “I would be too, if I was that small,” said Corin.


      “What did you say?” Prettymad retorted angrily. She quickened her pace and her hands went to rest on the pommels of her weapons.


      Seeing this, Corin up-righted his great axe and answered, “I said I would be pretty mad too if I was that small.”


      “Hold, please, friends,” Seldae interjected. “I believe we have a misunderstanding.”


      “Indeed,” said Kinsyn supporting Seldae and trying to avoid unnecessary conflict.


      Seldae explained, “Prettymad is this halfling’s name.” Corin’s face contorted as he processed that idea. “It’s her nickname.” His face, still contorted tilted to the side. “What is your name?”


      That one was easy, “Corin,” he answered.


      “Great! Corin, may I introduce you to a halfling who is called Prettymad Squirrel?” she said.


      “Your name is Prettymad Squirrel?” Corin asked.


      “No. Weren’t you listening?” Prettymad bristled, “It’s not my real name, it’s just what people call me.”


      “Why would you let people call you a pretty mad squirrel?” Corin genuinely asked.


      “Why-- I-- You-- I oughtta--” Prettymad started, but was interrupted by Seldae.


      “Let’s not worry about that right now, ok? I think we have bigger problems on our hands, like where are we and how did we get here?”


      From a short distance away Xiin’s voice came back and said, “A fair question.” Yndrofiun and Xiin walked toward them curious about the brandished great axe and a clearly on-edge halfling, but more so about the answer to the stated question.


      “Does anyone remember anything?” asked Prettymad, finally settling down some.


      Yndrofiun answered, “Xiin and I remember a desert and pinkish red lights.” After this statement it went silent. It seemed everyone agreed on this point, but no one had anything further to add. No one could remember anything more.


      Then Xiin said, “But when was that? It’s clearly morning now, so does that mean it was last night we saw the lights? It seems so long ago and I don’t remember anything else, not even what I was wearing… but you all do look familiar, as if we’ve met... years ago.”


      “I can’t say much about time, but now that you mention it, you all do look familiar, the ugly half-orc especially,” Prettymad said slyly.


      The others tensed, waiting for the inevitable, but Corin surprised them all by calmly saying, “I may be ugly but I can drop a tree as thick as you are with one swing of my axe. Just think what I can do to you.”


      “You’d have to catch me first,” Prettymad replied.


      “Do you all think you could speak civilly to each other for a while? I’m going to go over there,” she pointed at some sand dunes in the distance, “and pray. Perhaps Elistraee will shed light on these questions,” Seldae said.


      “I also will pray and meditate,” said Kinsyn. “Perhaps Oghma will reveal this knowledge to me.” Both of them went off in separate directions while the others found seating.


      “I’m hungry,” stated Corin. No one had thought about food up until now, but now that it was mentioned stomachs started churning and gurgling. They all patted themselves, feeling for full pockets and searching purses and bags. There was not much between them, but they shared the rations, saving some for the two absent people. Then they scrounged through the wreckage but found nothing of use.


      They did speak civilly to each other until the sun distinctly rose higher in the sky. They tried to piece together what was going on, but it was all futile. They could remember random places but could not attach them to any concrete memory. The faces of their family and friends were not forgotten, but any specifics were faded. Ideas and concepts were rooted firmly in their minds as were any skills or beliefs, but the precise facts of it all were gone. It was not that they were erased as much as it was like the memories were so old they could not be recalled any more.


      Kinsyn was the first one to return. He carried with him a backpack which seemed full. As he sat down with the rest of them he opened up the backpack to reveal several large fruits. “What are those?” asked Corin.


      “I’m not sure,” replied Kinsyn, “but I’ve already eaten two myself. They are not very ripe, but it’s better than nothing.”


      “Thank you, Kinsyn,” Yndrofiun said, “Your generosity is appreciated. Here is your share of some rations we collected earlier.”


      “Thanks,” Kinsyn said and immediately began to eat them while everyone else grabbed some fruit and started eating.


      Not long into that meal, Seldae returned and was given her share. “I’m surprised you all aren’t asking me if my petitions were answered.” They all looked at her with mouths full of food. Understanding, she also ate.


      When they were done, Kinsyn spoke up first, “Oghma is distant and revealed nothing to me. I feel, though, this is a path I’ve been set upon to discover, accumulate, and disseminate great knowledge for the glory of Oghma.”


      “Elistraee is also distant, though there is a peace about it. I will continue this path also until I’m led elsewhere,” Seldae said.


      Prettymad, having finished her food, was looking at the sky and something piqued her interest. “Do you guys see that?” she asked. “Look up in the sky. There are more moons than just Selûne up there.”


      They all looked and were just as surprised. “That is very interesting,” Yndrofiun said. “Are we in a different land entirely?”


      “It would explain the distance Kinsyn and Seldae feel from their gods,” said Xiin. “But if we are, there’s not much we can do about it now. Normally in this scenario, I would play us a song to lift our spirits, but alas, my instrument is nowhere to be found. So instead, I beg you listen to these lyrics as I sing and allow them to encourage you.”


      Xiin then sang, acapella, a beautiful and vocally rhythmic song about a farmer, his horse, and a massive ancient tree. After he was done, no one could recall exactly what Xiin sang about, but they all did feel a lot more hopeful about their situation.


      Then, having finished all the food, they picked up what few things they had with them and began to walk down the beach in search of some answers… and some more food.

      Last edited: Oct 28, 2016
      Seldonia, Sook and Syrbryce like this.
    9. Seldonia
      Seldonia
      .

      While getting somewhat acquainted, the group made their way down the beach. They could see smoke rising from what might be a campfire up high on the back side of the dunes. As they approached, a voice came to them from behind some broken crates.


      “Oi there, you look as if you could use some assistance. We might just be able to help each other out.” As the last word faded a halfling stepped from his hiding spot. He was dressed similar to Prettymad, in tight leather, and he moved with a cat's grace as he approached the group.


      “The name’s Jeets, but you can call me Jeets,” he chuckled as he said this. “That one always makes me laugh.”


      It was Prettymad that spoke first. “Where are we?” The question was simple, but Jeets seemed to be a little perplexed by it.


      “You are on the beach of course. I imagine it is because your ship was smashed by our local dragon nuisance. But my, you all look cold and dreary. Why not come up to the camp and we can discuss this further by the campfire.”


      The group, still not sure where they were, needed answers. The offer seemed genuine so they followed Jeets up over the dunes. The camp consisted of two tents and small campfire. Some crates littered the area here and there. Most of them solid but a few looked to be busted pretty badly. “Welcome to our humble home, for now at least,” Jeets said.


      This time Xiin spoke, “Our? How many people do you have with you?”


      Jeets turned and smiled at Xiin, “No worries. It's just me, Talbron over there, and Cellimas is just up the ridge.” he said as he pointed to a path leading away from the camp and into the hills beyond. Standing at the foot of that path was a being none of them had ever seen before. It looked like a metal plated humanoid. From head to toe nothing but metal plates, in the gaps between those plates could be seen what looked to be muscles with no skin covering them.


      The group was quite shaken by this sight and it must have shown on their faces. Jeets regained their attention, “It's okay. He's a good guy, a little dull and straight laced for my liking, but overall a good guy. Come on, I will introduce you.” With that he walked toward the being, looking back over his shoulder to see if the others were following. They weren't at first but the need to get the information regarding their whereabouts was first priority. Seldae's curiosity got the better of her and she stepped forward first, quick stepping to catch up to Jeets.


      Corin tightened the grip on his weapon, he looked to the others to see if they too were preparing to fight. Yndrofiun, tearing his eyes away from the abomination on the path in front of them, looked Xiin directly in the eyes and said, “This place is definitely not home.” The rest of the group murmured in agreement but found themselves stepping forward anyway.


      They caught up to Seldae and Jeets and all stood with their mouths agape at the sight in front of them. Jeets observed the group with a look of amusement on his face. He addressed the entire group, “Where did you say you were from? You act as if you've never seen a Warforged before.


      Talbron started to feel a bit uneasy with all the staring and spoke to the group, “Do I have something on my face?” He looked at Jeets, “You did not tell me you were bringing a group of friends along.”


      Jeets told Talbron of how he found the group walking along the beach and he thought they could assist with the task at hand. “Cellimas is just inside the cave up the path, follow me and we will get on with it,” Talbron stated as he turned away from the staring group and headed up the trail. He spoke a few more times on the way but none of the group heard a thing as they were still awestruck by this being. It wasn't long before they were all entering the cave.


      About thirty paces in they saw a woman standing by a large doorway as they approached she spoke to them, “Hello, I am Cellimas. We will be heading through the doorway you see here and will hopefully find a way out of the cave on the other side. Can someone please pull the handle on that mechanism over there?”


      The group had no idea what they were getting themselves into, but these three might have some answers to their questions, if they could just stop moving long enough to have a talk with them. As fortune would have it, that wasn't going to happen. The giant doorway slid open, Jeets and Talbron were already moving through the opening, beckoning the others to follow.


      The inner cave was warm and damp, the lichen on the rocks was slick and keeping one’s footing was difficult. The entire group entered a large chamber, a gate could be seen on the far wall blocking passage. Cellimas spoke, “Perhaps there is a way around by using that ladder. Would any of you like to investigate?” Prettymad was already climbing the flimsy rungs before Cellimas had finished speaking. The agile halfling was on the top ledge in seconds and disappeared just as quickly.


      The group stood in the middle of the large cavern waiting for something to happen. A loud creaking noise startled them all as the gate blocking their passage started to slide open. Everyone made their way through the opening and ahead of them they could see Prettymad standing over what looked to be a very large Sahuagin with a smile on her face. The beast had two gaping wounds on it's neck still oozing blood. “Well, that was invigorating!” she exclaimed with a tinge of excitement in her voice. “Will there be more?”


      The group pressed on through some smaller passages and before long entered a large open chamber. The ceiling was very high and along the outer edges there were pockets where the light did not penetrate. Cellimas was saying something about her client when her words were cut off by the sound of hissing. It seemed to come from everywhere. The group was looking all around the cave for the source of the sound. Kinsyn spotted the first sahuagin as it edged into the light from one of the darkened areas above them.


      Someone screamed, “Ambush!' Just as the flood of sahuagin came pouring out of the darkness. There were more than twenty of them and the group spread out to fight. Corin charged into a group, his Great axe swinging wildly. The weapon struck true several times and lifeless bodies dropped to the floor. Yndrofiun, was chanting and waving his hands in all directions, the arcane energy surrounding him shooting off toward the enemy. Kinsyn had pulled his weapon and was also swinging at the enemy dropping body after body to the floor.


      More sahuagin men came from the darkness. Xiin had pulled his sword and was keeping the ones around him at bay while Seldae was moving from spot to spot casting spells to keep her group healthy and taking her shots when she had the chance. It was a beautiful dance of spell and sword as she lithely weaved her way through the chaos. Prettymad was working with Jeets and Talbron as Cellimas were blessing the whole group to keep up morale.


      They worked well together as they fended off wave after wave of sahuagin. The battle went on for quite some time but in the end the nine of them were victorious. The entire cave was littered with bodies, some of the dead looked like they were sleeping peacefully while others looked as if they'd been ripped apart piece by piece.


      Seldae wandered among the carcasses and tended to the party’s wounds, surprisingly there weren't many to treat. Each of the group had worked so well together that the sahuagin never really got close enough to harm them. Seldae was impressed by each of them. Whatever happened to them they certainly hadn't forgotten how to fight.


      Prettymad was inspecting the cave's outer walls when she turned to Jeets and asked, “You see anything?”


      Jeets looking a little worn from battle said, “No, but there has to be a way out of here. You would think there would be at least some sort of door!” He was starting to get frustrated thinking this might have been a dead end.


      “WAIT!” It was Prettymad, “I feel a draft here. It looks like a solid wall but there is most definitely a draft. Can you feel it?” Jeets nodded in agreement.


      “Here, look! It's a tiny mechanism. It looks like a button,” Prettymad said as she pushed the little rounded rock. The scraping of rock on rock pierced the quiet in the room as the wall slid to one side, revealing a room just beyond.


      Jeets cheered, “Well look at that! You did it. Very impressive, but don't tell Cellimas it wasn't me though, please? I am trying to impress her, you finding the door first is not going to help.”



      “Your secret is safe with me,” Prettymad said as she waved the group toward her. They all gathered in the little room. There was a wooden doorway and a bunch of barrels and crates in the room. Cellimas thanked each and everyone of them as did Jeets, who threw a wink at Prettymad, sealing their pact to keep secrets. Talbron was also thanking them for the assistance. The group, still leery of the Warforged, kept their distance even though Talbron had saved a few during the fight. It seems they are much tougher than any being the group had seen before.


      Exhausted and still not sure where they were the group exited the cave through the wooden doorway. They stepped out and found themselves in a little town. It was snowing but yet it was somewhat warm and the sun was shining. Corin looked at the group, “Weird place keeps getting weirder.” The group found it hard to disagree with his simple logic.


      “Indeed,” Kinsyn replied.


      There was a man in the path up ahead, his clothes were tattered as if they were rags sewn together. The group approached him. “Well Met Sir,” Yndrofiun said to the man.


      “To you as well,” the disheveled man replied.


      “Perhaps you might help our group here, can you please tell us where we are?” Yndrofiun continued. The man had the same look on his face that Jeets had when posed the same question.


      “Why, you are in Korthos of course,” He replied.


      Yndrofiun posed the question again this time emphasizing in a different way. “Again, can you tell us WHERE we are?”


      The man thought the gnome slightly insane but, looking at the group he was with, didn't want to anger anyone. He decided that someone else might be better off dealing with these people, “Perhaps I wasn't entirely clear, I apologize, this is not my home so I assume everyone here knows where they are. To answer your question, you are in K OR THOS.” he said the word slowly like talking to a child. The frustrated look on the gnome’s face told the man that perhaps it was time to depart. “Why don't you seek the answers to your questions in the Wavecrest Tavern, it is in the center of town.” With that he turned and hurried off.


      Xiin heard the word tavern and perked up. “Well if there is a tavern then this place can not be all that bad, can it?” he said to the group as he walked off in the direction the man had pointed. The group shrugged collectively and followed him. Their hunger overtaking any rational thought at this point.
      Sook and Yndrofian like this.
    10. Seldonia
      Seldonia
      [​IMG]

      The scene had been playing itself the same way for the past couple months. The party would gather in the tavern after sundown to discuss the day's activities and plan a strategy for getting off the island. After all this time they still hadn't got a firm answer on where they were or even when they were. They did have some leads from a few of the locals though. The problem was getting to Stormreach to follow up on those leads.


      The ships in the harbor feared sailing due to the dragon that has kept all traffic in or out of Korthos at a complete standstill.


      In the meantime the party had spent their time helping out some of the villagers with various issues. It has proven a pretty easy way to make a little money and the locals had caught on that if they need something done, the new strangers in town are the people with whom to speak.


      The owner of the tavern didn't mind them hanging around until closing every night either. The musician of the group, Xiin, was pretty solid with an instrument and quick with the words, as well as the ladies. The big guy in the group most folks feared so they never tried to pick fights while he was around. The rest of the group kept mainly to themselves but could drink quite a good amount. There was the main issue the owner had. He was running low on alcoholic beverages and would need a supply from the mainland soon.


      One recent evening he made mention of this to the party. He told them if someone didn't do away with the dragon soon he would be dry and unable to serve anyone. That seemed to spark the party a little. They all turned away from the bar and headed for their usual table in the far corner grumbling to each other.


      “That is the last straw! We have to do something about this dragon,” Prettymad stated to the group as they found their seats. “Not only is it keeping us on the island and away from getting answers, but now it is threatening to dry up the only place to get a good drink around here.”


      The rest of the party nodded their heads in agreement. “We could track it to find out where it lives,” Corin stated the obvious.

      “Are we strong enough to take on a dragon though?” wondered Seldae and added, “It's not like we we’re home. We barely have enough clothing to cover ourselves let alone decent weapons for fighting.”

      Kinsyn looked at Seldae, “Indeed.”


      They fell silent for a few moments, each contemplating their current situation. Yndrofiun spoke, “We have to do something. We can not stay here much longer for many reasons, no alcohol being one, but the bigger issues is, I want to go home. Getting off this island is the first step to that and I for one am not willing to let anything stand in my way.”


      Yndrofiun's words seemed to resolve the party. Each one of them stood straight and one by one they put a hand in the middle of the table and stated what had become their mantra, “I am in.” When everyone's hand was in they broke with the words, “Let's do this.” Then one by one they picked up their drinks and finished them in one long draw.
      Yndrofian and Sook like this.
    11. Yndrofian
      Yndrofian
      [​IMG]
      The Ship to Stormreach





      The party secured passage to Stormreach on a ship called the Sojourn by striking a deal with Rinar d’Thuranni, the ship’s captain. He was very anxious to set sail as he was losing money daily with his ship tethered to the docks. It was a simple matter of defeating a white dragon and a megalomaniacal mind flayer when all their resources were a realm away and all the help they received from the townsfolk involved speaking to them as if they were just born.


      “We charged the great ice dragon with a shout and a volley of magic. Swords and maces sliced and cracked into the dragon’s thick hide,” Xiin flourished his arms about in arcane gestures and the back-and-forth of a swooshing sword.




      [​IMG]

      Everyone was bored and in need of some good entertainment and Xiin was just the man for the task. His voice danced as he weaved the story for the ship’s passengers. The dim light from the fickle few torches gave the listeners just enough light to see and just enough darkness to whisk away their imaginations. Corin even found himself wondering at the true events of the past few weeks on Korthos. He seemed to do some truly amazing things! The other party members ignored the exaggerations and enjoyed the tale.


      Xiin continued, “Our combined might quickly defeated the dragon with nary a dent in our armor. Cellimas even said that--”


      “Yeah. That never happened,” interjected Prettymad.


      Xiin looked sternly at Prettymad, but tried to look nonchalantly, then tilted his head a little and motioned his eyes to the pair of pretty lasses in the back of the small audience, who, up until Prettymad’s interruption, were quite riveted on Xiin and his tale.


      Xiin’s audience looked at the halfling unhappily. It had been a good story, full of danger, magic, and mystery. Then the halfling spoke and tore them from their beautiful fantasy story back into the real world: a poorly lit world below-deck on a rocking ship steadily making its way across the water.


      It was stuffy and smelled of lantern oil and stale body sweat. While not a long voyage from Korthos to Stormreach, most of the passengers on the Sojourn had been in Korthos much longer than they planned and simply wanted to be in Stormreach with its amenities. Though most already missed the smooth maltiness of Old Sully’s Grog, a little more sophisticated venue for food drink was very much in order.


      So to lighten the broken mood and perhaps to defend Xiin a bit, Seldae spoke up, “While my friend here may have aggrandized things a bit, we did defeat a great evil and freed the island of Korthos from its neverending winter which allowed all of us to be here on this ship, finally on our way to Stormreach.”

      There was light cheering at that, but the mood had been shattered so everyone got up and went their own way. Most of the party still sat there, but Yndrofiun got up and said, “I’m going up to the deck to get some fresh air.”


      “Me too,” said Corin. “There is wood all around me, but it’s not a forest. I miss solid land and fresh air.” So he followed Yndrofiun up the stairs but once on deck they both occupied very separate spaces, happy to be alone and under the sun.


      [​IMG]


      Yndrofiun sat at the stern of the ship with the sun at his back. He closed his eyes for a moment, exhaled slowly, then pulled a tied-shut leather bound book from inside his robe. He untied it and began to flip through the pages. Selecting one page in particular he began to study it intently. So deep in concentration was he that he did not notice the shadow fall over him, but he did hear the shadow’s owner plop down beside him on the deck. Yndrofiun looked up from his book and saw a human female looking down at his book, squinting and trying not to go cross-eyed.


      “Be careful, lady,” Yndrofiun said. “Untrained eyes looking too long at arcane symbols like these can cause a mind to go mad.”


      “Yes, well, I prefer to call upon my god for any spells I may need. I’m called Solarcaine and I guess you’re the famous Yndrofiun.”


      “I guess I am too,” Yndrofiun said with a half-smile. “Xiin means well. He just likes to… garnish the details sometimes.”


      “That may be, but we all were there and we all know if it weren’t for you, gods only know how much longer we would have been stuck on that backwater island,” Solarcaine said. “I went to Korthos with Rylee because our wizards and seers had foreseen some very ambiguous, yet seemingly very important, things taking place. I suppose a white dragon being controlled by an illithid fits that bill pretty well. Add on top of that the sahuagin issue and you’ve got the makings of a lot of drama for such a little island. I also know you had a hand in helping with the sahuagin too. My thanks to you for that as well.”


      “You’re welcome. While we do have our own problems, we certainly try to help others along the way.” He paused, then continued, “I don’t mean to pry but you said you had seers? Are they in Stormreach?” Yndrofiun asked.


      “Well, they are not mine exactly. They are members of an organization of which I’m a member, The Order of the Silver Dragon. And yes, they are in Stormreach,” Solarcaine answered.


      Yndrofiun smiled a bit at the good news, then asked, “My party has a number of individual problems, but one, collectively, overshadows the others. Could we meet with your seers? We are short on funds, but given enough time, I am sure we can appropriate enough to pay for their services. We seek answers and are willing to go to the ends of the realm to find them. In fact, that is exactly where we need to go,” he said mysteriously.


      “I believe that can be arranged. They are usually very busy, so it may take a few days or even weeks,” said Solarcaine, her curiosity piqued, but unwilling to pry… yet.


      “We will pursue other avenues in the interim then. Certainly Stormreach offers a variety of resources in this regard,” Yndrofiun said.


      Solarcaine nodded and said, “Yes. There is great power and wisdom throughout the inhabitants of Stormreach to be sure. The ruling body is a group of people known as the Coin Lords. They have heavy influence on most things and people of note in the city. It could do you well to garner their favor. If they can’t help you, I’m sure they can point you to someone who can.”


      Yndrofiun smiled and bowed his head, “Thank you for your help. I look forward to meeting the others in your order.”


      She smiled a knowing smile back and said, “Ironic you should say that. I think they may be looking forward to seeing you too.” At this, Yndrofiun’s pleasant look turned perplexed and she continued, “We are always watching for people who we think will fit in well with us. We look for brave and selfless people and if they can handle themselves in battle as well, then we might have a special place for them. Your group has demonstrated everything we look for in a candidate. In addition, after this conversation, I’m no longer certain we were sent to Korthos to help the locals, as bizarre of a set of problems as they had. I’m beginning to believe we were sent to find you. If that is so, by the time we arrive in Stormreach, I suspect there may be people waiting for us.”


      Yndrofiun stoically took it all in for a few brief seconds, “This is very interesting. We should go and speak with the others about this.” He put his spellbook back in his robe and rose to his feet. Solarcaine joined him, and as they walked toward the hatch that led below deck he commented, “It seems Lady Tymora may have a hand in this after all.”


      “Tymora? Is that the name of your drow companion?” she asked.


      “What?” Yndrofiun came to a slow stop and looked up at her. “No, her name is Seldae. Tymora is the goddess of luck. She seems, lately, to be the bedfellow of fate. The circumstances that have gotten us to this point are very vague up until we arrive in Korthos, but one thing is certain; it seems no accident.”


      “This gets more and more curious as we talk, doesn’t it? Around here, Olladra is the goddess of luck and has been for a very long time. Where did you say you were from?” she asked.


      Yndrofiun succinctly replied, “I didn’t.” Solarcaine became a bit defensive at that and Yndrofiun noticed it. “No offense intended, but it is not my place to tell someone else’s secrets. Please, let’s meet with the others. We clearly have a lot to discuss before we arrive in Stormreach.”


      “Would you mind if we got Rylee on the way? I think she could be of some help as well,” Solarcaine asked.


      “I think that is a good idea. I need to get Corin too. He is probably at the bow sleeping.” Yndrofiun answered. They split up and Solarcaine headed below deck.


      After Yndrofiun woke up the grumpy half-orc they both headed to the hatch. When they reached the bottom of the ladder, Solarcaine and Rylee were waiting for them. “Yndrofiun, Corin, may I introduce you to Rylee?” Solarcaine said politely.


      “Who’s she?” Corin asked.


      “She is called Solarcaine. They are members of the Order of the Silver Dragon, and I believe they can help us,” Yndrofiun answered.
      Sook, Finleyville and Seldonia like this.
    12. Yndrofian
      Yndrofian

      Our party has finally arrived in Stormreach! Now the reality of finding food and a way back home begin to set in. They must create a life only to eventually leave it... but first... beer! and a place to sleep.

      enjoy!
      Seldonia likes this.
    13. Yndrofian
      Yndrofian


      The air was cool and damp. Very damp. It reeked of stale cold sweat and stagnant putrid water. Occasionally, in the tunnels beneath the city, water seeped down the walls, or dripped from the ceiling, and pooled on the floor creating a perfect place for moss and algae to grow making for treacherous footing at times. There was always some trickling or dripping sound in the Waterworks of Stormreach. This time though, there was an accompanying din of sharp metal on metal, animalistic barking, and the intermittent roar and yell of a very angry… something: the distinct implication of battle.


      Kinsyn’s greatsword made a massive horizontal arch, right to left, mostly in an effort to keep a group of kobolds away, but also scoring a few minor hits against those stupid enough to get within range. While Kinsyn defensively played a game of patience and tactics allowing Prettymad and Xiin the distraction they needed to flank the enemy, Corrin had no such subtlety. He charged another group of tiny kobolds, his huge half-orc frame causing as much chaos as his greataxe which he used to cut through the kobolds like a scythe through wheat.


      Seldonia called upon the power of her goddess and channelled that awesome presence into the mind of a kobold. Struck numb and immobile by the divinity, the kobold fell prone. Seldonia took the opportunity for a coup-de-gras. When she wasn’t beating on helpless kobolds, she kept the group on their feet, healing them from the numerous minor wounds inflicted by the jabbing swords and spears.


      Yndrofiun stayed back, out of range from most of the missiles and spells being thrown at the group, but close enough to evaluate and respond. He incanted briefly and a massive, thick sticky web grew from a spot on the floor out in all directions at an intersection in the tunnels ahead of the main fight as yet another group of kobolds rounded a corner there. Most of them became entangled in the mess and the more they struggled the worse they got stuck. Some managed to circumvent or slide through, but as they approached to reinforce their dwindling numbers another spell shot forth from Yndrofiun’s fingertips. The simple-minded kobolds were easily subdued. Confounded with magic, they just stood there as if hypnotized into a trance.


      * * *

      Kobolds were a funny bunch. Most were well on the side of stupid, but there was the occasional melee-savvy fighter or powerful spell caster. For the sake of argument they were a nuisance and served only to waste resources and time. Sometimes, though, one of them rises to the top, smart enough to lead the rest and smart enough to cause a lot of trouble. Often times it goes overlooked as not worth the effort to remedy. Unfortunately for the kobolds, this time they upset a powerful man: The Harbormaster.


      * * *

      Yndrofiun watched his party skillfully finish off the last of the kobolds. It was so interesting to see it all play out. The term skillful can mean so many things, he thought: Prettymad, so deft and quick, always waiting for that right moment to strike causing the most damage in the best place at the best time; Xiin, still a little sloppy with his rapier and buckler, but using the distractions of his enemies to make up for it and more importantly he was armed with all the arcane support they needed; Kinsyn, wielding his two-handed greatsword with tactical prowess, as much offensive as defensive; Corrin, who fights with the end in mind and figures it all out with his double-bladed axe as he goes; Seldonia, with the interesting amalgamation of wrathful magic hand delivered to her enemies, healing support for her allies, and peppered melee attacks; and Yndrofiun himself, watching and waiting, using his art in the most effective way by manipulating and controlling the flow of the battle, occasionally picking off single key opponents as the opportunities arise. “I should write a book about this,” he thought. “Or at least a journal of sorts.”



      * * *

      Stormreach was a port city and as all port cities go, its docks were its lifeblood. Without the tariffs, taxes, and trading, the city would be but the tiniest of dots on a map. And Harbormaster Zin was the man responsible for keeping the harbor running smoothly. Sometimes that meant overlooking questionable things and sometimes it meant a heavy-handed response. When it became clear that the kobolds were kidnapping children and that some of those children were relations of a very good friend of Zin, there was not a second thought to his decision.


      He spoke with the Coin Lords and they recommended a group of mercenaries, or adventurers as some would call them. This group had consistently proven themselves as not only effective, but also as loyal to the Coin Lords, so Zin paid them a visit to enlist their services.


      * * *

      The party made their way through a seemingly endless maze in search of the kobold’s leader. After what seemed like miles of stinking kobold-infested tunnels, the group found a large chamber where they saw a makeshift wooden throne placed at the back of the room. As soon as they entered, a trapped portcullis dropped behind them with a loud resounding thud. They were locked in.


      Out from behind the pillars in this large open room came the guards. A handful charged the party. Corrin and Kinsyn met them head on with Xiin and Prettymad following close behind. Moments after melee was engaged, several flasks of alchemical fire began to explode all around the fight. It seemed the kobolds either had terrible aim, or didn’t care if they hit their own. Xiin and Prettymad both noted the threat and split off to different sides of the room to deal with the kobolds throwing the fire bombs. As they rounded the two large pillars they were met with a barrage of magic missiles and lightning bolts.


      “A little help here!” yelled Prettymad as she engaged the kobold thrower she had initially targeted, putting him between herself and the shaman. It did little to shield her from the shaman’s endless cursing, but she trusted that arcane support would arrive soon.


      Xiin chose a different means of conquering his foes, he let out a short “EEP!” and ran away, again putting the large column between him and the kobolds. He also awaited spell support.


      Seldonia saw the threats on all fronts and realized this fight was going to be much different than the close quarter combat skirmishes that led them to this point. She called upon Elistraee, imbuing her allies with courage and bravery and then began to work another spell.


      From behind her a spherical green spatter shot past and smacked into the shaman harassing Prettymad. By no means did it kill the shaman, but as the blob of acid slowly ate away at the kobolds clothing and then into its skin, the shaman was unable to focus on casting and instead just smacked at the goo which only served to spread the acid onto its hands and all over its torso effectively taking it out of the fight.


      Seldonia noted this out of the corner of her eye as her spell casting finished with a loud POP centered around the kobold thrower nearest to Xiin. The earsplitting sound was like an increased pressure on its ears due to a quick high altitude change combined with the shriek of a banshee. Both the thrower and shaman on that side of the room were sent reeling. They stumbled around clutching their bleeding ears. Xiin, protected from the noise by the big pillar, noted his cue and sped back around the pillar, divinely emboldened, and attacked the thrower and shaman, making short work of their demise.


      A barrage of magic missiles aided Corrin and Kinsyn in finishing off their opponents. When the battle was finished Prettymad’s keen hearing picked up a high pitched whine coming from the back of the chamber. The closer the party got to the source of the sound the more distinctive it became. There was still a kobold alive, a very scared kobold.


      Corrin tore the crude throne away from the wall. Behind the throne there was a small alcove dug into the stone in which a kobold was hiding. Kinsyn reached in and roughly pulled him out, his excessive whimpering making it nearly impossible to distinguish any actual words. Corrin hefted his axe and readied for a killing strike, but Xiin bade him hold. Reluctantly, Corrin acquiesced.


      * * *

      Harbormaster Zin did not have to try very hard to convince the group to help find the children. Not only was the offered reward lucrative, but the fact that the Coin Lords themselves were involved and the lives of innocent children were at stake, it was an easy decision for the group. As they explored the upper levels of the Waterworks, they came to the end of a hallway. Shadows played around corners and the dim light of torches revealed a set of doors in the floor, clearly an ingress to the lower levels.


      Snoring met the group as they began to consider the passageway in the floor. Quickly they moved their torches in the direction of the sound and found a Stormreach guard, or someone dressed like one, sleeping, sitting with his back supported by the corner. His face was bruised and his light armor was damaged, even torn in places. Blood was spattered all over him and it seemed some of it was not his.


      Seldae approached him and nudged him with her foot. He jerked awake and managed to pull out his sword halfway before she pinned his hand to the ground with her foot, “Who are you and what are you doing down here?” she asked.


      “My name is Tember, I’m a Harbor Guard. Now, if you will be so kind as to remove your foot from my hand I will consider not arresting you for assaulting a Stormreach Guard.”


      “My apologies, sir,” Seldonia apologized. “Actually you were the one we’ve been looking for. Zin sent us to find you and your cousins. Seems you’ve found some trouble.”


      “Yeah. Tried to find my cousins, Arlos and Venn, myself. I had no idea how many kobolds there were down there. They’re breeding like rabbits!”


      “Then let’s thin the herd,” Prettymad said.


      “A herd of rabbits?” Corrin said to himself out loud. His quizzical expression showed how he must be imagining such a thing.


      “What can you tell us about their numbers, strategies, and locations?” Yndrofiun asked. And for the next hour Tember recounted his tale.


      “The chief of that clan, Clan Gnashtooth, is the only one who will know anything. You must find him.”


      * * *

      “Chief Eechik, allow me to congratulate you on the great clan you have established here in these tunnels,” Xiin began. At this the chief looked up, curious. Xiin continued, “It is unfortunate though, my friends and I have killed most of them trying to find you. They did attack first, mind you.” At this Eechik began whimpering even more. “But fear not, Chief,” Xiin explained. “You can still have a chance to be great again.”


      “What you mean?” Eechik asked through his sniveling.


      “You’ve taken children from the surface. Tell us where they are and we consider sparing your life,” Xiin replied.


      “I not take!” Eechik said surprised. He was about to say more but was quickly cut off.


      “Absolutely not!” exclaimed Seldonia.


      “Kill him. Then we find the kids,” agreed Corrin.


      “He is unarmed and very unaggressive. Cold blooded murder is not our way,” interjected Kinsyn.


      “Well, not for some of us,” Prettymad said under her breath with a half-smile.


      “Relative morality notwithstanding,” Yndrofiun started, “it would be much easier if he told us where they were rather than trying to find out ourselves. So let’s start there, shall we?”


      Xiin continued, “I’m sorry for the interruption, Chief. You were saying?”


      “We no take them. Well, we do take them, but for Bloodletter, he make us. We no want trouble. You want them? You take them. Prison is that way,” Eechik says and points down the hallway, “but they no listen to Eechik down there, only Bloodletter.”


      “Now can we kill him?” asked Corrin. The chief began whimpering and sniveling again after hearing this.


      “The devil you know,” said Yndrofiun. The party looked at him with questions. “Let’s head to the prison. I’ll explain on the way.”


      “So we’re not killing him?” asked Prettymad.


      “No,” Yndrofiun said flatly. “Trust me. If you really don’t like what I have to say, you can come back and finish him. Go on ahead. I’ll catch up.” As the party exited the large chamber, Yndrofiun turned to the chief and said, “For the most part, you have been quiet down here. Make sure it stays that way. If you make too much trouble for us, I’ll come back down here myself and see how long it would take for my flaming sphere to slowly kill you.”


      Chief Eechik nodded as if spasming.


      Yndrofiun caught up to his party quickly. Seldonia wasted no time in asking, “Please tell us why the chief of this stinking kobold clan is still living.”


      “Yeah, Yndro, I was just kidding when I told him he could be great again. We just needed information,” Xiin said.


      “The devil you know,” he answered.


      “You said that before. Repeating yourself does not explain anything,” he retorted.


      “Eechik is not the cause of this trouble. Zin lets a lot of things go unchecked in the harbor so long as the coin flows. Eechik mostly stays to himself and keeps his trouble below ground. He is a known variable. If we kill him, someone else will take his place, an unknown variable. That’s a fact. Any way you look at it, kobolds will remain down here. If Eechik is replaced maybe that someone will have more aggressive ambitions that make a lot more trouble for us and Zin. If we have a choice between the devil we know and the one we don’t, I highly recommend the docile homebody one we know over the alternative.”


      “Indeed,” added Kinsyn.


      Everyone else, more or less, conceded the point. They also brought up the thought of food, sleep, and supplies. With Eechik’s approval to go to the prison, it also seemed he’d quickly spread the word to give the party safe passage through all the upper part of Clan Gnashtooth, so they made their way back to the surface, updated Tember and Zin, resupplied, and got a few hours sleep before going back. This time deeper even into the sewers.
      Sook likes this.
    14. Yndrofian
      Yndrofian



      After a time, the most abusive of odors dulled the senses enough to when the party was occupied with other things the smell really did not bother them. Now, though, after having washed up and slept in a clean room, their noses were assaulted anew as they descended deeper into the sewers to the prison in search of the missing brothers.


      Snapshot - 7.gif


      This area of the sewers seemed so much the same as the last: swarming packs of kobolds with the occasional shaman seemed to harass the party at every turn. In addition, there was a large cistern of sorts with a very wide raised platform in the middle and from each of the cardinal directions ran a bridge, spanning the water, leading into other sections of the sewer.


      The party cleared their way to the platform and emptied it of its kobold guards. They stood in the center and had three choices of bridges, all of which were raised and had a wheel valve beside them.. “Which way now?” asked Xiin.


      Kinsyn spoke up, “I say we continue straight ahead. It’ll be easier to remember where we were if we have to turn around.”


      “I say we see what’s to the sides first then continue forward,” contested Yndrofiun.


      “What if forward is to the side?” asked Corrin. “What then?”


      The group stared at him as he moved forward to peek around the raised bridge. “Well I don’t care which way we go as long as we get going. I don’t want to be down here any longer than I have to be!” said Prettymad.


      Seldonia moved toward the valve beside the bridge on the right and turned it. A creaking noise came from the rusty mechanism and seemed to reverberate around the inside of the big room for a very long time. Everyone looked around anticipating a horde of kobolds, awoken from their sleep, to descend upon them at any second, but nothing happened. She continued to turn the valve until she heard a faint hiss of air and a slight rush of water. The bridge slowly fell into place at the opening across the way. “We’re going this way,” she stated. Yndrofiun shrugged and started across.


      Within a short time they came upon the prison. There were cells lining the walls, upstairs and downstairs. It seemed the prison also served as a barracks because the entire place teemed with kobolds. The area was too open for a tactical approach as missing kobolds or small scuffles would easily be noted. The group therefore decided for the direct, suprise approach. Corrin liked this very much.


      Corrin’s axe lead the way and with great efficiency the entire compound was dispatched of its jailers. The party searched the cells and released many prisoners, one of which was Arlos.


      “Oh, thank you so much! But my brother! He’s been taken captive! I’m not leaving without him,” Arlos blurted out with barely time to think between thoughts.


      “We’ve released all the prisoners, Arlos. He’s not here,” said Prettymad. “And I’ve searched all over for secret doors or passages and there are none. Could he be in a different section of this place? There are two other bridges we didn’t cross back there.”


      “No. Bloodletter is back there, but no, Venn was taken by the worms,” Arlos replied.


      The group looked to each other for a clue, but no one knew what Arlos was talking about. “What worms are you talking about?” asked Seldonia.


      “Clan Tunnelworm.”


      “What!? You mean there’s a whole other clan of kobolds down here?” Xiin exclaimed. His shoulders sagged and he looked a bit defeated. “It’s not that I mind righting wrongs…


      “...but it gets a little old after awhile,” Kinsyn finished Xiin’s thought. It seemed everyone was mirroring this sentiment.


      “Well then... we finish this. We rescue Venn, keep our word, and finish the job. And then… no more jobs with kobolds!” Prettymad proposed.


      “Agreed,” Yndrofiun said. The others nodded their agreement.


      “But,” Prettymad continued, “you’re not coming with us,” she said to Arlos. He began to argue, but one look from that little halfling closed his mouth. The party escorted him back to the surface and immediately went back in to find Venn.


      * * *

      ScreenShot00009.jpg

      The deeper they descended the more they began to question the motives and competency of the engineers that designed these tunnels. “No, I’m serious. What is this passageway for? And the room we just passed, was someone expected to actually live down here?” Xiin asked.


      “They would need a maintenance crew,” Yndrofiun pointed out.


      “Sure, but these are storm drains and sewer tunnels. What exactly is there to maintain?” asked Kinsyn.


      “There are many valves and gates down here that could malfunction and possible blockages and collapsing walls,” Yndrofiun said.


      “Which again begs the question of the engineers. Why are there so many valves and gates if this is supposed to be just sewers and drain tunnels? And how poorly constructed is it if they need full time live-in staff to ensure the walls don’t collapse?” asked Seldonia.


      “All fair points,” Yndrofiun conceded, “but I’m not defending them or answering for them. I’m just making conversation while we have a lull in this seemingly endless fight against the kobolds.”


      “Now that you mention it, Yndrofiun, do these Tunnelwormers seem to hit harder than the other clan?” Prettymad asked.


      “I don’t know. I make it a point to not get close enough to get hit,” he replied.


      “Yeah. They hit harder,” said Corrin. Kinsyn and Xiin nodded in agreement..


      “‘Tunnelwormers?’” Seldonia asked, looking quizzically at Prettymad.


      “Tunnelwormians? Tunnelwormarians? Tunnelwormese? I dunno. They all smell the same,” Prettymad said.


      Feeling confident but being cautious, the party continued through the tunnels. There were so many passages and alcoves that if it weren’t for Yndrofiun’s auto-mapping spell, surely they would have lost their way.


      Soon, they entered a very wide circular room. It was hard to see the other side, but above them they could make out a wooden ramp that, in one revolution, spiraled around the room from top to bottom. They made it into the center of the room before the kobolds sprung their trap.


      Darting out from behind large pillars and revealing themselves all along the ramp, the kobolds began a fierce offensive. Throwers were lobbing their alchemical flasks and warriors charged the group with weapons brandished. As the well-practiced adventurers began to split up to their kobold exterminating routine, Yndrofiun cast a spell to hasten their reaction and attack speed and then ducked behind a pillar to avoid any fire bombs while determining his next move.


      Seldonia invoked the presence of her goddess and revealed it to a kobold warrior. Struck by awe, he fell on his face blubbering. As Seldonia ran to finish off the prone kobold, a lightning bolt struck the ground where she had been standing and casting the spell. She glanced back at the charred floor and ran even harder.


      Yndrofiun had missed the shaman. It was safe to say everyone had missed the shaman. As Yndrofiun took another look around the area he noted more than one shaman. There were two or three up on the ramp, peaking over enough cast spells, but tucked too far back for any long range weapons to reach them. And the party was stuck at the bottom of the ramp being harassed by warriors and throwers.


      “Shamans above us!” Yndrofiun shouted to the party. “I’ve got them!” he said as he ran towards the center of the arena, making himself a prime target, but also getting the kobolds on the ramp within range of his spells. If he could position himself just right he could get them all with one spell. He began to cast Hypnotism: a beautifully simple spell that immobilized the enemy for a short time. It should give just enough time for his allies to break through the stalemate at the bottom of the ramp. As he reached the center he began his casting. At this point he was close enough to the other side to see a shaman begin his casting too.


      With a quick mental prayer to Tymora he finished his spell, but not before the lightning bolt left the leathery fingertips of the kobold shaman. Fully committed to the spell, Yndrofiun was not able to move out of the way and took the lightning bolt fully in the chest. Not conscious enough to yell or groan, only a weak exhale left his mouth as he was blasted backwards into the pillar he was just hiding behind and then slumped to the ground limp and lifeless.


      At this Corrin yelled, “You’ll pay for that stinkbaggin figgleboggwater barkbashlacking trucklyhow deeeeead koooobold!” Thrown into a fit of absolute rage, he began to push through the kobolds taking many glancing blows, but not caring. He had one goal in mind. Seeing this and quickly determining what Corrin had in mind, Prettymad cut through the slight spaces and openings in battle and raced in front of Corrin.


      As she ran up and around the ramp she counted 3 shamans, the middle of which was the one responsible for the bolt that felled Yndrofiun. She came upon the first one so quickly that he didn’t have the time to get a spell off. Instead he got ham strung as she ran right by him and farther up the ramp.


      Kinsyn and Xiin redoubled their efforts against the kobolds at the base of the ramp, both of them working together like melody and harmony. The monotonous drudgery of this quest suddenly changed and the purpose gave them all focus and clarity.


      With a quick flutter of her fingers and a prayer to Elistraee, Seldonia cast the biggest heal spell she new on Yndrofiun, but to no avail. He lay there unmoving. “I can’t get him up!” she told Kinsyn and Xiin.


      “Well if we don’t put these kobolds down soon, there will be more of us looking like he does,” Xiin replied. And with that bit of encouragement, Seldonia entered the melee with spell and sword.


      Corrin finished off the hamstrung shaman with two swift cleaves of his greataxe and pursued Prettymad, “That one is mine!” he yelled to her. He watched as the second one cast yet another lightning bolt at Prettymad, but this time the bolt hit only the wall beside him as the halfling sped by and toward the last shaman.


      The shaman turned around, following Prettymad with his eyes, intent on casting what seemed like the only spell he knew. He began to lift his arms, but they suddenly fell to his sides. His body lurched forward as Corrin kicked him from behind then shuddered as he pulled his great axe from its deep resting place the kobold’s back. The barbarian was surprised the kobold was not split in half. “For Yndrofiun,” he said matter of factly.


      Dodging back and forth to avoid spells, Prettymad finally reached the last shaman. She threw her dagger at the kobold, but he twisted to the side dodging it easily. It was only when he turned back did he realized the thrown dagger was simply a distraction. And that last thought was literally cut short as Prettymad’s shortsword pierced his chin and when straight up through his skull. A little twist and yank had the blade removed and the last shaman fell to the wooden ramp, his blood already seeping through the boards to the floor below.


      “Let’s go,” she said to Corrin pointing with the dagger she’d retrieved at the melee at the bottom of the ramp. Corrin turned and ran back down followed closely by the halfling. In the few seconds it took them to get there, most of the fighting was done. They finished off the breathing kobolds and turned as one to Yndrofiun.


      Seldonia knelt over him, felt for a pulse, and prayed again for his healing. Again, nothing happened. Frustrated and fighting back tears she said, “I can’t feel his pulse and my heal spells have no effect!”


      “If we get him to the surface fast enough, I’m sure we can find someone who would be willing to resurrect him. Maybe the Coin Lords or the Order of the Silver Dragon would help us,” Prettymad offered.


      Kinsyn looked at Xiin with a question and Xiin answered, “You better than any of us should know that some things only Oghma knows.” Kinsyn nodded, a gesture thick with sadness and hopelessness.



      Last edited: Mar 11, 2017
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