The Chronicles of Etinerra

X marks the spot - Gambler's Curse comes to Izil
"Eastern Borders" There's always a price...

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“That Gypsey!… Vanir!?, help ”/campaigns/the-dark-ages/characters/50481" class=“wiki-content-link”>Izil bring curses upon her!" Izil realized Gina put something in his wine. The black X on his face meant that she plans for him. Her attraction might become fatal to her if she does not pay her debt to Izil. If Gina wanted something from Izil, she would send someone to come for him. Her beauty was so unique, so radiant, that Izil wondered if she was the white wizard. "uuughghghghg…Izil now know Gina’s tricks Izil will have her".

A night of carousing throughout town brought Izil more knowledge about Enonia. Interestingly, at the Mug and Pot and other taverns that Izil could afford (The Eagle’s Alehouse close to center of town, The Fox’s Flagon (north) and Sword and Flagon (south), the bards sang songs about foolish adventurers who’ve braved the wilds, to win some gold and glory, but also songs of those whom had found brutal death. To Izil, these sounded suspiciously like stories of the travels that Izil and his fighting companions have taken! If Kjeld was here to hear their adventures together.

Interestingly, whilst at the Eagle’s Alehouse, Izil heard that Anya and her band of hoods have not be heard from since they left for New Hope a fortnight ago.

The night pressed on and Izil passed food and drank to the other patrons. A nice tip to the most beautiful one of the bards, Gina, brought stories of the Sithasten Mountains. “Uuuuummmmm??…she thought resting on ”/campaigns/the-dark-ages/characters/50481" class=“wiki-content-link”>Izil‘s lap. She whispered low into Izil’s ear as he took a large swig of wine, “They are a long sweeping range of mountains stretching far to the north and bordering the eastern edge of Valenia far to the south and continuing on to the Oceans. Beyond them are foothills and more forest and the wild lands – some of which is held by the littlelings. From ”/campaign/the-dark-ages/wikis/enonia" class=“wiki-page-link”>Enonia, they are roughly a 10 day walk to the east".

Before Izil hit the floor Gina held his head against her breasts. “There were villages around ”/campaign/the-dark-ages/wikis/irecia" class=“wiki-page-link”>Irecia, but nobody has been to the mountains in memory and it’s not known if any villages survived". “”/campaigns/the-dark-ages/characters/50481" class=“wiki-content-link”>Izil be warned for it is said that in the Days of the Doom, orcs and goblins swept from the mountains to overtake the lands – and worse creatures as well. It is also said that giants and dragons also inhabit the mountains. Nobody has gone there in 2 generations, as nobody wishes to cross the Bestial held lands". “Buh-bye beloved” was the last thing Izil heard when he hit the ground.

Izil‘s risk to woo Gina the Gypsey to Izil’s bed ended in mishap. The gambler’s mark left upon his face made it very clear. What was not clear is whether it was Gina who placed the mark upon his face.


Treasure or Trust
Requisition this magic knife out of my back

Spring in Enonia has not just brought ruin or danger, but new adventurers as well. One of those new adventurers, Valen the Elf, came to the Mug and Pot with tales of a hunting lodge and a magic knife. The hunting lodge, located east of the Monastery of St. Eggyx was claim to a local hunters guild and lost two generations ago to the darkness.

Valen’s tale moved the local heroes of Enonia and found allies in Izil, Dolf, Joraan, Irem, and Dul. Valen’s good intentions convinced the party that adventure was to be had and the heroes agreed to help Valen in his journey to reclaim the knife.

Valen invited Dul “The Lone Ranger” to accompany him to the older part of Enonia to meet with the sad man named Johann who had shared the tale of the hunting lodge and the Magic knife with Valen. Johann explained that the knife was a family heirloom and passed down for generations from a time when it was given as a reward for his ancestors fight against the Dark Ones. 20 years ago his Grandfather had left on a hunting trip and both he and the prized blade were never seen again.

The heroes headed out on a miserable rainy spring day to find Johann’s ancestral knife and claim any other treasures the wilderness might offer. As they traveled through the ranges toward the monastery rain beat against them and warnings about the Spider Queen echoed through their head. Around mid day the party came upon the monastery and entered the woods searching through the Dark Woods late in the day into the evening.

Darkwoods clearing and goblin encampment

As the adventurers set-up camp in an improvised and abandoned goblin clearing they ate and decided to continue their search the next day when the weather cleared. Again Dul’s keen sense of the wilderness predicted the rain would be lighter and the lodge would be found as the party stumbled upon an old path that crept it’s way through the forest.

Dul’s keen direction sense lead the party to a clearing where the lodge lied quiet amongst the belly of the forest. Cautious as ever Dul stopped the party and informed the party of the lodge that lie ahead. As Irem began to move forward Dolf stopped him boasting of his experience stealth and stepped ahead of Irem. As Dolf crept through the forest even the dim witted Izil could point pointed out Dolf’s way through the forest as he approached the lodge. Quickly Dolf was out of sight as he turned the bend and entered the clearing. Death lied about the outside of the cabin as bodies from generations ago lay on the ground with roots and weeds coving their bodies. They had no clothes to distinguish who they are or what business they had there. It was there alone in the clearing that Dolf decided to test his mettle.

Dolf knocked an arrow and let it land into the body of the dead only to find that it was one of the damned! Two undead scavengers sprang to their feet and Dolf sprang back to the party where a quick battle was won and victory was to be had. Cautiously the party regrouped and combed the edge of the clearing to make sure no more damned lied about literally preventing stumbling over four more damned who liked in the tall grass. The party continued to comb the outside coming across a pile of bodies in the back of the house which were lit on fire using oil and slain quickly with blades. The battle was swift and the damned dispatched quickly. All that lie left was the cabin itself.

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With windows open and doorway ajar the party spied the insides of the building to find 6 more of the damned face down on the floor. The party prepared their attack shooting an arrow through the door and into the damned awakening them. The damned did not stand a chance, death by a firing squad and one damned in particular (donned in rusty ring mail) meet his end when Dolf launched a magic missile toward it. The ensuing melee ensured that the party was safe from the ravenous claws and bites of the damned. In the heat of battle they lost sight of each other for an instant and Dolf the rouge located and swiped the knife and its scabbard from the rusty ring mail protected damned.

In victory Izil took the bold of the damned and painted tribal tatoo’s across his body and face praising Vanir for the opportunity to battle and the wealth won from the day. The lodge was searched, minor items of interest were found as the insides of the lodge and it’s attic where cleared. Once the party was sure they were safe they camped in the attic somber about not finding the ancient knife heirloom to Johann. In the morning as the party set back towards camp they wondered what happened to the lost knife put thankful again that some of the wilderness, (at least for now), was claimed for humanity.

The Teachings of Inlaw from the 25th Day of Spring

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We headed east out into the woods skirting the troll bridge only to “almost” run into the troll out for his daily constitutional. Reached the vast field around Irecia about mid day of the 2nd day of travel. Headed south trying to spot a rumored mine. Spent the 2nd night just inside the edge of the woods where we were attacked by very GIANT crows on first watch. We ate crow the next morning.

Continued our search towards the south east then back north swinging further out into the plain. As we got almost back to the Enonia-Irecia road we came across a deserted farm hamlet. One building overgrown with man-eating vines. We had just gotten somewhat recovered when a dozen skeletons erupted from the earth. The clerics sent them running.

We spent the night away from the hamlet but a little further east. The next day we went south again. About mid day we came upon a stone tower with only one visible entrance. After breaking down a magically locked door, we encountered an imp (perhaps) guarding the inside on the 2nd floor. The imp was far more interested in being released from bondage than guarding any treasures. The second floor has 4 doors. The two center doors lead into a dinning room which may have been magnificent once, but is no mostly decay. Unseen servants rushed to take our cloaks and have us seated. With an effort we exit the room with one corroded silver goblet. The 1st and 4th doors appear to be magically held. When webbing started appearing on the stairs, we decided to leave. We forced marched home bearing that tarnished silver goblet and a few giant crow feathers as our only treasure.

Towering above the rest
A foray into "Death's Tower"

Alarms and commotion meet the townsfolk and heroes of Enonia at dawn. The alarms mustered the the best knights out Eastgate past the heroes of Enonia Inlaw, Soteria, Douzane, Valen, Joraan, Kjeld and Izil who banded together to venture towards the wizards tower in the distant plains of Irecia.

As the heroes headed out of town their attention was called to the Floating Crystal Tower: about a 1/2 mile north of the main road. What was distressing about the Crystal Tower was that it was now the edge of the Dale woods floating, inching ever so slowly towards Enonia. Marshall Roen and his knights bravely rode out to encounter it. Yet, they were unable to establish communication with anyone who may have neen in the tower.

Kjeld, Izil, and Douznae briefly meet with one of the Marshall’s lieutenants sharing their knowledge about the Crystal Tower. Once the party offered their expertise they pressed onward to the East.

The heroes pressed towards the Derelict Wizards Tower reaching it at sundown. They picketed their ponies and mule to the ground and spent the night outside. In the morning the party awoke and inspected the door that was breached from their previous visit. Unfortunately, the front door had been repaired and the party battered their way in only to encounter a thick magical fog that saturated the inside and out of the tower. The stairs were still webbed from their previous escape and smartly the adventurers torched the webbing lighting it on fire to clear the stairs stairs. As they went up the stairs some sort of confusion spell impeded the adventures from going directly to the doors they wanted to Investigate. In the process we provided much entertainment for the guardian imp. The heroes finally found their way to the left most door and battered their way in. Once the door was ajar Douzane encounter some sort of undead creature which attacked and was defeated swiftly by Kjeld.

The room also some sort of magic spell prevented that prevented the part from lingering near the door into the room. The room, a bedroom was in extreme disrepair had a mirror, which was promptly covered, plus one other door. A third door was discovered when the mirror was moved. This door was guarded by explosive runes, which blew up when Valen attempted to read then.

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Valen and Barney, one of Joraan’s loyal followers died in the blast. Several others were injured and Douzane lost his spell book to the fire. Additionally, the mirror was shattered. Since we believe that the mirror had entrapped the wizard of the tower, it is Inlaw’s belief that its distruction caused the death of said mage, whom the party never meet, and released the guardian imp, for the imp was not seen after that event. The party spent the night inside this room demoralized but optimistic that there was treasure to be found. To add insult to injury the second door in the room lead to the toilet. The 3rd door, no longer guarded by runes, led to a study. A crack in the wall had allowed the elements to destroy almost all the contents held inside the library’s shelves. However, the adventurers did discover one scroll and 4 potion bottles. While the scroll remains unidentified the party tested the potions and believe that (do not know) that they are:

  • DWT 1 – Find treasure/Gold

  • DWT 2 – Slow

  • DWT 3 – Clairvoyance

  • DWT 4 – Etherealness

  • where DWT stands for derelict wizard tower

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Having the procedure down to travel throughout the tower the party checked the door at the far right only to discover an empty room, and a secret door. The secret door lead to a room filled with confusion gas and to another door. This door lead to another empty room with a well that lead downward into a deeper and depth less dungeon. Daunted, the explorers collected their ponies, mule and limped their way back toward Enonia.

Shortly after getting back to the road but before they got into the woods, the party encountered an orc scouting party. 5 orcs mounted in full armor, horses in barding sounding a horn came out of the woods from the direction of Enonia, heading towards Irecia. At the sound of the horn, The explorers quickly left the road and hid in the grass. Luckily, they did not see the party, and the party did not attack them; they were in no condition to punch our way out of a paper sack.

Fatigued by poison and disheartened party made it back to Enonia without further incident minus 3 of their original group, and badly chastened by their plight of coming home empty handed

The Monastery and Beyond
St Eggyx Points the Way

I report herein upon events both glorious and sobering for followers of the Light and, indeed, all of Enonia’s peoples.

My long-delayed desire to return to the Monastery of St Eggyx and address unfinished business there was finally fulfilled. To aid in this matter, a robust company of 10 was fashioned. Myself and Alana were the official representatives of the Light. While not of the order, elven warrior Kee has been a devout follower of the Light, too, and is rarely far from Alana. The rest, I knew only through indirect references, and the second and third hand rumors that swirl through a small town with much intrigue – Inlaw, Jorann (a priest of another belief) and her two hirelings, Irem, Tistislium (with mule in tow), and Hamgrin (yet another of the Little Folk).

When word of our intentions reached Averin’s ears, we were summoned for an audience with her. She spoke of fears for what the arrival of the Crystal Tower might mean, and of a desire that sacred items of the Light not fall into malevolent hands. And so we were tasked with retrieval of a Holy item of St Eggyx.

We passed the aforementioned Tower as we and it headed north to the Monastery. The surface was clear, as expected, and we descended without incident. Lacking detailed diagrams, we were guided mostly by vague recollection. We first encountered a handful of the neo-goblins picking through trash and dispatched them with ease.

Next our wanderings found us in the barracks room with the lesser of the crevasses. We saw a small cluster of large rats – on this point, and indeed on all parts of this incident, we are unquestionably in agreement, having compared our individual perceptions most thoroughly afterwards. As we began to assault the nasty little things, an unthinkable quantity of them began gushing out of the hole and towards us, as if a dam had burst. We fended off the first of the onslaught as best we could, but quickly saw that the situation was untenable. Just as we were making plans for retreat, even more quickly than they had appeared, the rodents vanished without a trace. Had someone deliberately set a delusional enchantment here? Did the noxious gasses wafting upwards have a hallucinogenic quality to them? Unfocussed excess magic and evil from below producing nightmares? Fine theories, but questions without answers they remain, for now.

We arrived next at the Fountain Room. We set to work carefully burning away the offending mold/slime that marred this otherwise tranquil place. As the job was finished, our main body found that our rear guard had been overrun by giant arachnids, and we made haste to assist. The fight went quite poorly until fire and oil turned the tide. Even so, two of our company were felled with bites that swelled and discolored disturbingly. We put our recently purchased antivenom to use, and they pulled through, however.

Our attentions returned to the fountain, and we did our utmost to purify it – we used fire and oil to burn away slime, poured holy water into the fountain, and blessed and re-consecrated it. Our efforts were rewarded with pure Light streaming in from above and the appearance of the Holy item we sought. Quickly we returned home that night to rouse Averin and display our find. She was pleased, but felt that it might be of assistance to us, and declined to keep it.

We rested and returned the following morn. A special place within the Monastery seemed to give me a sign that St Eggyx wanted us to unseal the Warded Door and proceed. Still, we feared the consequences of such an action, and delayed to search for the Temple. When we arrived, the bodies of the two creatures I had heard so many months ago were there, felled by others sometime in the interval. The altar had been treated most foully, but there was naught to be done about it. We turned our attention to the large crevasse here. Hamgrin may only be half the size of a human, but he contains twice the courage, for he volunteered to be lowered into the dark alone, which was done. He reported a large, cavernous area, but nothing of note and no signs of life.

With nowhere else to go, we had to choose between descending into the crevasse and the great Door. The majority opted to heed the sign, and thus the Door was unsealed.

Beyond it was pure, thick blackness. After a few cautious experiments, there seemed to be nothing to do but to chance crossing the threshold, and so was it done (although not without spiking the Door open first, nor without considerable coaxing and bribery where the hirelings were concerned).

We emerged…elsewhere, huddled on a freestanding platform, with stairs descending further than the reaches of even the most keen-sighted. Again, with little alternative, we pressed on. At some point, we became aware that the stairs were twisting and corkscrewing gradually, but gravity’s orientation seemed to match the stairs, for we held to the stairs like a bug underneath a table. We also took note of some growing specks in the distance. Our hope of reaching ‘bottom’ before they arrived was in vain, as was any hope that they would be benign. The giant mosquito-bats swarmed us and feasted well upon Irem and a hireling before being driven off. The former was salvaged, but latter was last seen tumbling into space.

Blessedly, the stairs did not spiral about infinitely, but deposited us in a hall of pillars and blackness. The carvings depicted atrocities, reminding one somewhat of the tortured souls in the Dwarven Mine carvings.

Whist we examined the room, a duo of blobbish things formed from nowhere. We defeated them without incurring significant harm, but the battle was of note on two counts. Firstly, some attacks, however well aimed, seemed not to have the desired effect. There is cause for concern about invulnerabilities. Secondly, the chief means of their defeat was via a sword Kee had long possessed. The blobs brought it to life, claiming itself to be “DemonBane”, a name it soon well earned. DemonBane covered itself in frost and, under Kee’s stewardship, split both creatures (which I ne’er would have recognized as demons) in twain.

Though we were intrigued by the banging sounds of metalwork in the distance (which put us in the mind of Dwarves again), we retreated to report back to Averin and contemplate our next moves. We discovered, to our great relief, that the Door re-sealed itself behind us, ensuring that the Evil below will only be encountered at a time of our own choosing.

Mazlor, beacon of the Light

The Monastery Revisited

On this day, we re-assembled much the same personages as our last foray, losing only Tistislium and Inlaw, and adding a pair of newcomers to the region in their stead – a wizard named Selwyn, and Oliphas, an outdoorsman.

We entered the Monastery and descended into the Otherworld without incident.
Upon arrival, we discovered that the remains of our slain mud-demons seemed to have dissolved…or been deliberately cleansed and removed.

Our party quickly headed in the direction of the previous banging noises, leading to a chamber of cruelty, where a crew of the bestial goblins held and had been torturing a handful of the regular goblins. In short order, the Red Ones were disposed of. A few implements were pocketed, to see about resale value. The victims were left temporarily, for we could not possibly escort them about through this outpost.

Opposite the torture room, Irem heard noises, and we massed before flinging the door…only to be greeted by a painful volley of sharp bolts. I closed the door and we considered our response. It took the form of oil lobbed through a slight crack in the door, followed by a mass charge. This overwhelmed the majority of our foes, though a few squirmed free and ran for it. We pursued briefly, until being forced to admit but a few of us were too laden to keep pace.

Guards were set at the passage unto which they had disappeared, while the remnant of our number investigated the room we had conquered. It was a singular area, to be sure. The place contained portraits on the wall, veiled by draperies. Most of the ‘portraits’ – perhaps ‘gateways’ would be more accurate – seemed to lead to or contain one the four elements of matter. One, however, led into what seemed to be a storage room of wizardly and alchemical implements. We gathered what we could of value, interrupted briefly in our task by local vermin, and returned to Enonia, being rather wounded at the time. In our haste to be gone before reinforcements arrived and carry away as much as we could, we left behind the prisoners, for which we received a scolding from Averin, upon our return.

After waiting out a terrible deluge of rain lasting days, we went North and Below again.
In a new direction, we found a huge hallway, lined with statues of stone. Adventurer’s Paranoia produced fears of medusae or animated statues. To worsen our fears, the statues were in poses of horror and terror, rendered in stark detail. And further still, the main bodies of the statues were ascertained to be of clearly different material than the bases to which they were attached. Our nerve crumbled – nay, disintegrated – and we proceeded in this direction no further.

We returned to the main entry hall and selected the third, and only unexplored, branch – the direction the savage goblins had fled. There existed a strange flickering quality not far in this direction. Though we considered and probed for traps and delusional magic, naught was discovered. Continuing along, the walls became rough natural stone, contrasting with the smooth, worked surfaces encountered previous. With this evidence, we theorized the flickering to be an imperfect spatial linkage to another place.

Our lofty thoughts were soon interrupted by yet another barrage of pointed shafts launched by the accursed red goblins. Belying their beastly appearance, they have proven to be progressively more and more organized and militaristic in nature. With their formations and powerful crossbows, the battle was viscous and desperate. Several in our front ranks were hurt greatly, spells were employed, oil lobbed, and formations charged, before we emerged victorious. After this great clash, we quickly retreated home, chastened by how dangerous goblins can be, with order and numbers on their side.

The Crystal Tower appears to be advancing slowly or not at all, of late. I have naught to guide this feeling but instinct, yet I find this comforting, somehow.

Mazlor, beacon of the Light

[OOC: I don’t recall some of the order and details too well. Feel free to correct anything and I’ll edit. In the portrait room, I have 6. But if 4 were elements and 1 was the lab, what was the other? And what attacked us while we searched the lab?]

Getting the Lay of the Land

So I finally get away from the “civilized” world and land in this run-down town in the middle of nowhere called Enonia. I figure I’m home free and can take my time, grab a drink or two and then see about heading out to the woods to see how the huntin’ is; get the lay of the land. Nothin’ to worry about out here, right?

I’m sippin’ on some ale, thinking about going out to land some game the next morning, when I overhear a group of folks arguing about where they’re going tomorrow in the woods. And what’s IN the woods. An old monastery overrun with critters? A tower that was used by some scumbag spellflinger full of traps? An inn that’s been turned into some sort of goblin fort? Terrific.

So, I walk over to ‘em and say, "Hi, name’s Dargellon. I take it the huntin’s not exactly safe around here." Then I really start to hear about what’s out there; kinda wish I hadn’t. Trolls under bridges are bad enough, but a flamin’ SPELLFLINGER troll? I’m takin’ that thing out if it’s the last thing I do.

Finally, one of the holy warrior-types at the table, Jorann, mentions something about a lost gold mine, and we agree to head out together to look for it. It’s only later I find out that it’s just a rumor overheard (with much drinking involved) by some fancy character in the group dressed like a fop that goes by the name of Irem. Ah well, at least it’ll be a chance to check out those woods and see what’s really out there.

So we stock up and head out the next day. All seems pretty normal, except for this big patch of scorched earth we pass. No vegetation in there, or wildlife, bugs.. nothin’. A quiet girl named Kallista pulls out some seeds and starts to plant ‘em on the spot. Seems kinda shifty, plantin’ seeds where nothing’s growing… I’ll have to keep an eye on her.

Next day, with the hoods of our cloaks up to keep off the rain that’s started to fall, we trudge on. Jorann’s got himself a hired hand named Fred to help keep his armor all shined up; must be nice. I’m a little worried about the littleling in the group though, Content Not Found: 80379. He says he’s ready to fight, but he looks too small to be of much use if we get into a scrap.

We spot some smoke rising in the distance, and when we check it out, we find out it’s a pile of human bodies piled on some burning coals. Plenty of signs of a battle, and clues to what the other side’s about: Wicked arrows in the bodies, and trails into the woods that suggest marching by ranks. An organized enemy – not good. We decide to leave the site far behind, but not long after, the other holy warrior-type, Kjeld, starts to twitch.

Now I’m not much for religion; I figure super-powerful deities and such have their own games to play and I’d just as soon not get involved with ‘em. I also figured that if Kjeld and Jorann could get along, following different gods as they do, that we’d all get along just fine, but I never expected the preacher to say a prayer and hear “FIND ME” back as an answer.

So Day 3 had us searching the woods for a god. And we found one. Sort of. We came to an ancient pile of stones and boom! Kjeld gets this ecstatic look on his face and starts talking to us with the voice of a god. If it wasn’t some spellflinger trick, it had to be the genuine article; nobody could fake that. He tells us to “remove the scourge” in the area, and afterwords Kjeld is so excited he starts askin’ if folks want to join his faith. I tell him I’ll think about it. We head for the plains north of the main road.

That night, I’m about done with my turn on watch when I hear somebody walkin’ in the grass out of range of the light given off by the campfire. I kick awake Kjeld and we get everyone up and alert, then head off towards where I heard the sound. Still can’t see a thing, even with Kallista’s hooded lantern at the edge of the campsite. That’s when the arrows started to rain in on us.

Now, my studded leather’s easy enough to sleep in if you don’t mind a few lumps, but some of the folks in the camp were caught in their smallclothes, and to make matters worse, while Fred was helpin’ Jorann get into the heavy stuff, 5 orcs charged in from the other side of camp, nasty scimitars drawn and ready to kill with ‘em. I fire off a few bow shots as they rush the camp but don’t hit a thing, and with arrows startin’ to punch into my armor and flesh from a spot out in the other direction I can’t see, I figure I’m done for. So I decide take a few out with me.

I toss away my bow and pull the halberd off my back and run into the fray, where the others have already started fighting back. Kjeld yells out an order to “Die!” and one of ‘em drops to the ground and I’m thinking, “Hey, why don’t you just say that to all of ’em?” I manage to take the head off one with the axe blade of the halberd but those scimitars are starting to draw blood from folks, myself included, and those damn arrows are still flying in.

That’s when Hamgrin showed us how much guts he had; the little guy was the only one that could see in the dark, and he ran out to go take on the archers alone. The arrow attacks stopped soon after, and we were able to take out the rest of the orcs we could see, but not before one of ’em whacked Fred. Rest in peace, Fred. I ran out screaming into the dark, hating the thought of what those orcs might have done to Hamgrin and hoping to maybe scare the remaining ones off.

When I was out of range of the campfire light, in complete dark, I dropped to one knee to let my eyes adjust. Couldn’t see, hear, or smell any sign of ’em… until my eyes focused just in time to see the shape of an orc rushing me with his scimitar. I thrust up the halberd at him.

I don’t know if was just dumb luck, or some god taking a hand, but I felt the sudden impact as the spike end of the halberd drove clear through the orc’s back, with the axe blade half-buried in it’s belly.

Letting him drop, I looked up and could just make out 4 shapes in the dark – was Hamgrin in there? I couldn’t leave him, and besides, with the fire in my blood, I figured one on four was a fair fight. I charged. I felt a sharp pain, started to scream, and that’s when the light really went out.

When I woke up, it was morning, and for a wonder the rest were all alive. Seems they managed to take out the last of the orcs, with the help of Kjeld doing some sort of trick with his war hammer that I wish I’d seen. Another strange thing.. the last 2 orcs committed mutual suicide at the end, driving each other through with scimitars. The preachers did a hell of a job patching me up; must have used every spare bit of cloth they could find. They say it’ll probably leave a nasty scar.

We made way for town the next morning and got back ok by the end of the week. We made a report at the Enonia Keep and got, well, let’s just say a nice reward. We decided we’re going to need to take over that inn that the goblins are holed up in to the east, so we can have shelter from which to fight back the orcs. No more camping out on the open plain! As we were making plans, something clicked in my head about all this.. Kjeld’s contact with that deity and his instructions, the organization and strange behavior of those orcs.. I’ve just landed in the middle of a flamin’ holy war.

Why did I come to this town again? Oh, yeah.. better huntin’. I’m beginning to learn that just when you’re starting to feel safe, you may have just gone from the frying pan to the fire.

Who Watches the Watchers?
Discoveries of a Great River and a Dwarf

We reached the foot of the Great Stairway without incident and were left to choose ‘twixt a door in the statue room or the rough passway guarded by organized goblins. Selecting the former, we found ourselves in a deformed garden of sorts, with bramble ‘walls’, giant brown plants, and a winding walkway. Following it, we were led to a thorny ‘tunnel’, where small figures above it fired their usual crossbows at us. We exchanged fire briefly, then ran into the tunnel. The ceiling was solid enough that we were temporarily shielded. Having determined that the vegetation would not support our weight, we did our utmost to set fire to the tunnel and flee. We watched some minor burning from a distance, before the creatures launched an ambush volley from the side walls whilst Irem attempted more pyrotechnics. To our surprise, these were not the typical deformed goblins (if such unnatural monstrosities can be called ‘typical’), but, rather, fat, bloated, bird-legged things, seemingly suited for perching upon the plants of the chamber. Realizing we were subject to fire almost anywhere, unenamoured with our chances in a missile war, and unable to find a way to engage the bird-creatures in melee, we retreated and sealed the door behind us, but not before sadly noting that our fires seemed extinguished without noteworthy effect.

Passing the library, we succumbed to its temptation, and entered for a quick perusal. I called upon the Light to help me find enchantments, but found only disappointment. Still, Teela did find one bit of writing she suspected of being an incantation, and pocketed it.

Next we girded ourselves for another foray into the perpetually defended rough corridor. Charging in, we splintered their lines with relatively little difficulty this time, but our success was tainted by two of them escaping, screeching for reinforcements all the while. We pursued to an intersection of four, hesitating at the obvious potential for ambush and crossfire. Indeed, we felt the pinch of flanking fire, but there were not many reinforcements, and without enough ranks to protect them, the bowmen were easier prey.

None escaped our wrath this time and we continued forward, until reaching what would seem to be a guard chamber. Three stools, a few crossbows, and a slew of bolts populated the cavern. The stools were not of wood, but of some other mysterious plant fiber. The far end was open to an underground river, so large that the opposite shore could not be sighted. We acquainted the store of armaments with the river, and they drifted away into the darkness.

Left from the fork, we discovered another chamber adjacent to the river. Here, though, was a dock, 2 rafts, and poles, all made from the same odd flora as before. Rafting the river was both an intriguing and daunting idea, but for now the right fork awaited.

In that direction we found what would seem to be a living room, adorned with sleeping furs, a fire pit, and what presumably passes for comestibles. Less mundane was the stack of rocks in one corner, sealing off a passageway.

We debated what the goblins might fear or be feeding, then sent some of our company to learn. What was discovered was the corpse of a Dwarf who had left this world quite some time ago. His diamond medallion and short sword seemed to have aged much better than his person, though, sadly, they were absent of dweomer. A wire and bell were cleverly rigged to alert him of intruders and a chest with a few solid bars of gold made fine compensation for our day’s effort. The most intriguing find was a tapestry, telling a tale of the Dwarves – their enslavement to the Dark Ones, how some (like this fellow) escaped and became Watchers, scattered about, ever vigilant for the return of the Dark Ones, after their original overthrow. This may indeed be the first actual Dwarf seen in decades, if not centuries!

Liking not the prospects of traversing home and back, nor the idea of re-experiencing the Darkness of the library area, we bedded down right in the corridor, just before the intersection.

Our first interruption came when the watch spotted the slowly creeping bloodsuckers, of which Dargellon had spoken of encountering in the countryside a dozen or so days back. Most were dispatched quickly, although one succeeded in making a fine meal of Dargellon for a bit, before being burst like a giant wineskin under a wagon wheel.

Precious few hours passed before we had to be roused again. This time the watch heard goblins yelping and cursing as they approached from the docks – the red devils had found the caltrops Irem had left behind!
Those who had armouring such that one could drift off to sleep within it went charging into battle, while those of us who sleep in no more than cloth were less enthusiastic and might rather have used the warning to retreat. Still, after our comrades plunged in, we followed. Again, the telling point in the fight was the Elven warrior Teela rendering goblins comatose with her mystical power for the second time this sojourn.

Depleted of spells and despairing of getting rejuvenated here, we trudged home in the light of the morn, to rekindle our vitality in the tranquility of our own beds.

Mazlor, beacon of the Light

The Bowels of the Earth

Treen, Oliphas (+henchmen?), Alana, Mazlor, Hamgrin

For adventurers only – not the general public | Whilst in town we discovered that a contingent of elves was visiting. Inquiries determined that they were communicating their plans to seal parts of the Dwarven Mine. Unfortunately, Roen indicated they were not inclined to join with humanity in a joint effort against the orcish horde.

Soon after we traversed to our frequent destination, the Monastery of the late St Eggyx. The tower was low in the air, but we had no interest in another visit therein. We made our way to the Altar Room and deployed our wooden ‘rope and pulley constructs’. Stout little Hamgrin scouted for us and spied a large pile of bodies beneath our ropes. I sprinkled some Holy Water as a precaution against any Living Dead, but we saw no wicked ones stung by its purity, and so we made to descend. While they may not have been possessed by vile spirits, they most assuredly were possessed of a vile stench, which quite upended my stomach. The corpses were that of unusually deformed goblins, and we supposed these to be the failed transformations.
A passage led out unto a cavern of immense proportions. We circled round its perimeter as water circles a drainage hole, searching for exits. Rock formations and minor opening were found, but none such as could support a human’s girth, until we had gone quite a ways. We forced our way in and proceeded not far until a thing like a heavy blanket landed and enveloped a hired hand. Dispatching the thing without doing the same to the man within was no easy task, but with the aid of the Light’s healing grace, the man fared less poorly than the thing and escaped with his life.

The passage opened into a low chamber, with a sunken indentation and a chest therein. After numerous precautions, Hamgrin raised the lid only to be assaulted by a squadron of animated woodcarvings. Their diminutive stature and our desire to not harm the littling greatly vexed our attempts to target them, and forced us to take drastic measures. Hamgrin was doused in oil, protected by the strength of the Light, then set ablaze. The devilish dolls were turned to cinders whist Hamgrin was left unharmed. What coin we could carry was taken home.

Reports on our journey were made and we enjoyed the Town Festival while mending. In less than a hand’s worth of days we returned for the last of the coin, circling the opposed way as before. We then backtracked to a curious puddle we had spotted the sojourn previous. Summoning the glow of the Light, we found a hole in the ceiling. Using grapnel, we scaled and investigated. A wet, winding tunnel led away. We followed to a point of wonder – the trickle of water was flowing uphill at us! Still, with nothing of obvious import in sight and the footing treacherous, we chose to pay our caution more heed than our curiosity and retreat.

Next explored was the shallow pool in the center of the Great Cavern. Nothing of note could be found. This left us but with one wide tunnel leaving the cavern to test. It led to a ledge down. Seeing nothing, the littling led the way down a rope. To our collective horror, he was immediately beset by a swarm of fiery beetles, who rent him apart before he could ascend again. We delivered harm on the beetles from above, but there was naught to be done for poor Hamgrin.

Further along, we heard and smelled a great ogre. Still stinging with anger, we merely crept in and assaulted the hapless beast into oblivion. He wore a medallion and was covered in dreadful sores and protested mightily our treatment of him, insisting that he had served loyally. But as life escaped him, he whispered thanks for delivering him from what must have been a tortured existence.

As a postscript to this entry:
Though I hath gone on many travels of grave danger, I have seen firsthand blessedly little death come to pass on our side – but a few mercenary sell-swords. Tis the first full, experienced member of our band I have had the misfortune to witness fall, and a gloomy experience it is. Fare thee well, brave Hamgrin. The Light will glow a bit brighter for your contributions to the world.

Mazlor, beacon of the Light

The journey to Irecia
Birthplace of the Damned
Jorann, Priest to the wise and benificent God Tangorin, having consulted with her god had learnt that a holy area was off to the east. Thus she assembled a group of brave adventurers to accompany her on her holy quest, and search for a lost gold mine on the way. The brave troop led by Jorann consisted of a cleric of the light named Alana, a Tennage elven fighter named Kee, a magic user named Treen, A ranger named Oliphus (and his 2 henchmen) and 2 brave followers of Tangorin. Together we set forth into the sleet of winter.

Many days did we head east each evening I consulted my god who warned of danger ahead.
on the 3rd day we saw large fires ahead and having decided it was probably the orcs, chose to detour southeast. There we came upon a battlefield littered with dead orcs and humans as we continued on we found a semi-circular wall of corpses which looked like they had climbed into place and died. The faces of the orcs were clawed. We were mightily disturbed by this and the elf was sick. We decided that this was too much for us and headed back northeast to continue our search.
The next day we began to come across varius homesteads, mostly emptied. we spent the night in one and were discovered by a pack of feral dogs. However the real adventure began when the elf went to get some water from the well and 5 giant spiders attacked us. But we slew them with no injuries to ourselves.
As we continued on the homesteads became more and more common as well as becoming clearly more prosperous. And ahead we could see the white towers of Irecia. Onward my stalwart companions and I went towards Irecia. We searched a few houses, all had been abandoned until we were within 2 miles of Irecia. There we found a partially burnt house that had not been abandoned and decided to spend the night. after searching through the lowere level we came upon a courtyard which led to a stairway to the upper floor. However, night was Upon us and Alana and I both felt somthing horrible in the courtyard.
So, we barricaded the courtyard enterence and spiked and barricaded ourselves into a room. Soon after we heard an unearthly scream, shattering glass and the pounding of something upon the courtyard barricade. Then the spiked door began to ice up and the pounding began on it. The spikes shattered and the doorway gave way to reveal 2 undead figures unlike anything we had ever seen before. I tried to turn them to no effect. We tried to burn them, to no effect (except that Oliphus dropped his molotov cocktail on his head). Normal weapons had no effect, yet we found some silver utensils in the house and these were effective upon them. Both of Oliphus’s henchmen died from a single touch of these horrid creatures. Luckily, Alana and Kee both had holy water which they used on the creatures. This made them scream and run away!
So we fled this house and spent the rest of the night elsewhere. In the morning we went on to Irecia. We came within a quarter mile of Irecia, but the damned were laying, sitting or standing all around. There was a strange mist or smoke coming from several areas, but we dared not get any closer. And so we chose to return home and tell of our adventure.