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Greenlake Notes Page 3

Page history last edited by Gillian 8 months, 2 weeks ago

Back to Greenlake, Notes Page 2.

 

Session 17 (Nov 13)

This session began with the PCs having just grabbed loot off the bodies of the ambush party in the alley in Cedarknot. Tension was high, and nobody quite knew why they had been attacked. After grabbing the loot, they all went through the Inn into the Common Room, and briefly debated running upstairs to search the rooms of the bad guys. Thori, on a brief trip upstairs before being charmed and sent away by the wizard, had seen that there were several rooms, and it looked as if they had lived there for a while. In the end, they decided they didn't have time to go upstairs, and so they left, just ahead of the city watch, which was coming down the street.

 

The PCs retreated to their camp near the "Firefly" (their pinnace) and spent a night recovering and healing. The next day, they staked out some main roads out of town, hoping to spot one or both of the surviving bad guys, but did not find them. That night they returned to the Inn and sneaked in, and searched the bad guys' rooms. It was evident that someone had been in the rooms, but probably NOT the watch. They recovered a sheet of paper, as below:

The Tripartate Amulet

 

A drawing of all three amulet parts was found in Drustan’s room, overlooked when he fled the Inn.

 

The first part is a ring carved with an endless rope/spiral pattern. There’s also a groove in one side of this ring, interrupting the pattern. The PCs have this amulet. 

 

The second is a star that fits into the center of the ring, over the five little arms, and locks into place. There is an ornate series of runes engraved on the star, one to each point, and an opaque green gemstone resting in the center. This is the amulet part that Drustan escaped with.

 

The third is a flat disc carved in a stylized humanlike woman’s face with long flowing hair and stars.  it has a post on the back, which can be slid into the groove on the ring-disc. Once the star is placed in the ring, and the post inserted, all three would lock together securely. The PCs have this amulet part.

 

In a different hand/ink, on the edge of the drawing is written:

 

5,000 from Mask 

Which one has them? Wizard? 

 

When flipped over, on the back of the drawing, in yet a third hand, are the following

Wizard - Eric - known to use fire - has not been seen to cast fireball

Cleric of Mikol - Vivian - also fire oriented - throws small flames - spirit weapon

Rogue - may be deceased - loyalty? 

Ranger - Rebexa - parents - cat companion - archer

Fighter - Thor - large weapons - melee - weak will? 

 

The PCs realized that they've been spied on for quite a while, and that the amulet was definitely what the bad guys were after. They left again, and decided to go to Candlekeep, an arcane library not too far from Cedarknot, where they might be able to research the amulet and the markings on it. They also discussed going to Castleton where they could sell some of the magic items they'd picked up from the bad guys (they got quite a haul, there, with a wand of fear, several weapons and armor pieces, two cloaks of resistance, etc...). They did not get the wizard's spellbooks, which ticked Eric off no end. Vivian finally decided to pick up a magic shield, raising her to a very high AC. They did find that the cleric with the group was definitely a follower of Mikar, the trickster moon god (Mikol's evil twin brother). 

 

Travel to Candlekeep was easy, and they paid the entry fee with a map of Kassem's tomb and a description of their adventure there, omitting mention of the amulet pieces. They then recruited a Librarian to help them do basic research, and found out a large number of possibly significant facts:

 The three amulet symbols - 

The spiral rope pattern is a classic one, used by wizards for centuries to represent eternal life. 

The particular variation found on the amulet was popular in the early centuries of the 2nd Miraborian Empire.

Some particular sects of Arcane Wizards believed that the only true form of eternal life that was proper was that which the Gods have determined - the endless cycle of souls from life to death to rebirth, and they used this pattern as their reminder of that cycle.

 

the star and green stone are an ancient version of the holy symbol of Nuthiar, a lesser god of craftsmen.

in ancient times, Nuthiar was once known as the companion of Aragh, and his role was to purify the souls of the newly dead, as they were prepared for rebirth.

the runes on the star are Ancient Miraborian symbols, referencing the destruction of the souls of the unrepentant dead.

Unrepentant Dead is an archaic phrase referring to the Undead, generally the intelligent free-willed sort. In the 2nd Empire, there was a famed warrior named Elcmar who hunted the Unrepentant and slew them. 

 

The face carved on the third amulet piece is done in a very old style of art popular in the early 2nd Empire.

Art such as this was usually used to represent folkloric stories, characters of folk and fairy tales told to children

Many of these stories were tales of adventurers and rogues who carried out impossible deeds, and it was popular to make jewelry that represented them.

this is the face of a 2nd empire heroine, variously called Aine, or Cliodhna - who was famed for stealing the very breath of a living man and selling it to a djinn for a wish.

 

Elcmar: sometimes said to be a priest of Nuthiar, and others a Paladin, he was a famed adventurer in pre-2nd Empire times. 

DC 15: Sometimes Elcmar’s name is grouped with Aine and Luchtaine, sometimes with Cliodhna alone. Sometimes Elcmar and Cliodhna are both portrayed as Nuthiar’s followers.

 

Aine: this woman was a rogue with magical powers of theft. She was a companion of Elcmar and Luchtaine. Sometimes her role is filled by Cliodhna, and sometimes both are present, described as sisters. 

 

Lastly, Vivian was able to remember that Nuthiar is a craftsman god, particularly favored by the Dwarves, especially those of Harothar in the north. Many of the stories about Elcmar and Aine in particular are set in the frozen northern wastes.

 

During their time researching, the PCs also stumbled across a book that contained a command word (Scepter) that seemed to open a set of magical doors in the study room they were using. Where these doors led was unclear, and they decided that it was probably not safe to go through them. They did learn that a wizard named Finuala probably created the doors; she was known for disappearing for long periods of time while at Candlekeep. Five years ago, she left on a journey and has never returned.

 

On the last day of their research at Candlekeep, the PCs returned to their temporary residence, only to discover they had a "guest": the wizard Drustan, the half-elf who had been part of the ambush on them in Cedarknot. He tried to bargain with the PCs for the amulet parts, offering them 5,000 sp for both; the PCs refused his overture, and told him to get lost or they'd see to it that he didn't survive for long. He left abruptly, with a warning that trouble would follow them.

 

On leaving Candlekeep, the PCs went to Castleton; there they visited the House of Ivorr and traded a magical piece of armor and weapon for Boots of Striding and Springing for Thori. At the same time, they asked the House to put out word that they had another, more powerful Great Axe (+1 axiomatic) that they wish to sell or trade. The House agreed (they'll take a commission on the sale) and told them it could take several months before a sale or trade could be arranged.

 

While this trading was going on, Eric disappeared. It is feared that he must have been kidnapped, as he would not wander off on his own. 

 

Sessions 18 & 19 

 As they are doing their trading, Eric, who went outside to the alley on "business", gets kidnapped. Using Bexa's ranger abilities, and Maxipus' scent ability, they manage to track the kidnappers and rescue Eric without TOO much trouble. Two locals hired as servants surrender, but two kidnappers get away. They make friends with Myron, a hobbyt of certain abilities, who is also a broadsheet gossip writer. He helps them figure out that the two escaped kidnappers went into a particular tavern, Celia's Favors (a "dancehall"). They follow, just a few hours behind the kidnappers, and discover a Temple of Mikar. A set of guards, a pair of chain golems, and a priest of Mikar manage to be dangerous enough taht the party retreats in short order. They inform the city watch of their discovery, and early the next morning the watch sends a crew in to raid the Temple. Twenty minutes later, the watch crew emerges in full retreat. A Paladin of Kehret, a priestess of Elanora, the Watch Captain, and 20 men-at-arms were driven off with losses, including the priestess, who was apparently cut off and captured by the cultists. The Paladin says he slew two chain golems himself, but the watchmen could not hit them. He says that the Evil Cult Priest escaped by "walking into a wall". Vivian heals the paladin, and he agrees to go back with the PCs into the temple on a rescue mission, with another priestess and a few more guardsmen. 

 

Session 20

The Party made a second raid on the temple, clearing it of several more chain golems, and eventually confronting the evil priest and his dwarf guards. However, the priest managed to flee as the dwarves protected his escape. He was traced to a secret entrance to the temple of All Gods, but no one there could discover who he might be. Several magic items, including an acid-bladed war-axe were recovered. The city guard captain praised the party, and the Paladin swore them an oath of friendship. In the belongings of the evil priest, they recovered the third amulet piece, and also enough correspondence between this priest and another, higher ranking one that proved the Priests of Mikar were hunting the amulet so they could use it to "recover a great treasure".

 

Session 21 (Jan 16)

Soon after, the party departed for Marig, in search of mysterious "tattoo magic" they had heard of; this magic could create a secret hiding place for their amulet. In Marig, the largest city of Greenvale, they delivered a letter for Myron to a cousin of his, named Saffron. Saffron is eager to go adventuring, and talks the party into hiring her as their rogue. They also visit the tattoo parlor and discover they cannot afford the tattoo they want to acquire. Then they hear about a missing wizard named Irtep; the man owes gambling debts to several establishments, and is being hunted by various threatening groups. The PCs come to an understanding about the debts with the owner of the Black Pearl; if they bring her the money, she will pay a 10% finder's fee. They sort of agree. 

 

They break into Irtep's tower, a rather nice piece of property, and immediately are ambushed by a troll (a guard?); Saffron screams, and their assault from above is nearly revealed to the city watch, but they kill the troll and dump it over the side; the watch are distracted and assume the troll screamed as it fell, or something. The PCs discover that Irtep is at home, hiding in a miniature magical world he created, called Minzoa, mooning over his lost girlfriend. They remind him of his debts, and he agrees they can have the money in his safe, if they pay his debts for him, and he will eventually come back to "reality". They search the rest of his house, kill a mummy in a crate, and steal a couple of magic items, including a magic invisibility ring. They then leave, pay off the debts(!), have enough funds for Bexa to acquire her tattoo, and leave Marig for Harothar. On the way there, they are attacked by ghouls, see a strange man with a mule, and are attacked again by a Hill Giant and two ogres. Sadly, Anchor, their pilot, is slain by the Hill Giant's fierce blows. It's a good thing Eric has been learning piloting!

Note: this is the session Bliss started playing with us, as Saffron, and where we no longer had Travis running Thorazin; he became an NPC.  

 

Session 22 (Feb 5)

The PCs backtracked the Hill giant to his lair and kill his two mates plus a youthful giant and several wolves. Saffron had to climb into the rafters to avoid being killed, and was nearly dragged down by one of the dire wolves, after a giantess tried to bash her. Eric fireballed into the Giant cabin, and slew them, but sadly they found the body of a dead prisoner inside later - oops... They did recover a bit of treasure, however. They continued on to Harothar, and reached Haroth the next day. Once there, they went to the Wizard's School and Library - they were able to spend a couple of days doing a massive amount of shopping, spent all the loot they had recovered over the past several adventures, and gained some nice upgraded equipment. They found a good bit of info in the Library, where they were able to get a lead on the location of the Amulet's original owners' home. Traveling there, they spent one night in the woods and were attacked by a Vegepygmy and thornies. It was a simple but brisk fight. A wall of fire (from Vivian) and entangle (Bexa) put them to rest. At last they reached the site they were seeking. A large pair of stone doors and a set of ruins. In the ruins they had a brief encounter with a giant ghost cat who seemed to really like Bexa. Sadly, they couldn't play with it, as its touch was damaging. They found her bones and laid her to rest before the hearth of the house which seemed to make her happy. Afterwards they went into the hillside, using the amulet to open the stone doors. There they found a dungeon, loaded with traps and mechanical creatures. Saffron aided them in crossing a rope bridge, but the giant mechanical wasps nearly drove them out. A Lightning Bolt from Eric was the only thing that really seemed to harm them. The next chamber was very odd- gleaming crystals in the walls, which appear to be small but somewhat valuable gems, and deep mud covered with a thin layer of dried earth have them stumped. There's a door, but they're afraid some effect will engage if they enter the room, possibly blasting them with lightning or similar. They decided to go back to the "lobby" and try one of the other routes (a stairs down, and a bricked over passage). 

 

Session 23 (Mar 5) Ooops, I skipped a session or two here: the PCs finished the Amulet Dungeon, and recovered a number of nice magic items, including the one which seemed to be the item all the other villains may have wanted - a Lich-bane Intelligent Longsword. This item is very powerful, and might easily control whoever tries to wield it. Bexa has decided to carry it, without drawing it, in her Haversack. After leaving the dungeon, they went back to Harothar, to the Wizard's school in Haroth-Underhill, and told the scholars there some of what they discovered, but they lied about the exact whereabouts of the ruins, and also told them the entrance is still magically sealed. They did tell about the ghost-cat. Then they returned to Greenvale. On the way, they saw movement in the countryside - something traveling in largish groups towards the south, but they did not investigate. Flying over Greenvale, they also saw a lot of movement of groups traveling around the country, many of them wagons being hauled west. Also troop movements to the west and south.

 

They flew on, first traveling as far south as the home of the Warforged, where they returned Anchor to his friends; they seemed dubious about being able to restore him. On the other hand, they were glad to have his body back to lay to rest, and did not blame the party for his death. They mentioned dwarves in the mountains to the southwest. On the way home, the PCs went by Thrakston, where Baron Thrak spoke with them - he is an old adventuring dwarf, now retired and become a leader of a group of hearty dwarves on teh southwest of Greenvale. Baron Thrak recognized the metal that the strange dwarves were using for their axes, and says nothing like it has been mined for centuries - it comes from "deep below the earth". He warned the party to be careful if they go investigating!

 

The PCs finally returned to their home in Greenlake, where they found Baroness Reynilda waiting for them. She told them about Baron Dmitri being arrested, about teh Deep Dwarves joining the Greenvale Guard in Greenlake, and also that she planned to go into Greenvale herself to rescue Dmitri and asked the PCs to please deal with the Dwarves, as she cannot both rescue her husband and keep her people safe. The PCs (at least Bexa and Saffron) began to think that they might be more ready to go after the Baron than the Dwarves...

 

Sessions 24 and 25:

After some thought - and the Baroness repeating her request that they deal with the Deep Dwarves, the PCs changed their minds. They decided they needed to find out exactly where the dwarves were coming from, and their purpose in Greenvale. So the PCs started at the far eastern end of Greenlake, in East End, and began hunting dwarves. They killed one set of dwarves there, then in Green Rapids and Briar Glen. In Wardel they had a little trouble, and in Hewe they were almost ambushed, but were able to take a lot of prisoners, and ran a bunch of Greenvale Guards out of the Barony (Saffron stalked and subdued six guards, one after another). They rescued some hostages, and killed eight more dwarves in total. Once the dwarves were all dead, they talked with the villagers, and learned that the dwarves all came up the south road, as if from Lifford Tower. But after investigating, they discovered no dwarves had ever been seen in Lifford. They captured several more Greenvale Guard, who tried to convince them that the Baron's soldiers in Lifford Watchtower were bandits. The PCs also paid another visit to Thrakston and the Dwarf baron there. He agreed taht the Deep Dwarves were very dangerous, again said that he'd be happy to provide a place of refuge for the Barons of Greenlake, Eldon and Pintar's Keep if needed. Back in Greenlake, the PCs traveled north on the road from Lifford Tower towards Hewe, looking for the Deep Dwarves. They spotted a party of them, moving south as if from Hewe, and were able to circle around and follow them - they veered off the road and traveled for about an hour through almost trackless woods and hills. Eventually they reached an ancient set of ruins. Here, they saw that the Dwarves' tracks went down a set of steps into the darkness. They decided to watch the ruins for 24 hours; in that time, they saw a Boalisk in the woods, and drove it away, and then at dusk a quartet of men escorting two human logger prisoners drew near the ruins. The PCs used sleep to subdue most of them, and captured the others. After questioning them they found out the following things: the four were cultists of something they called "The Centipede God", and swore that it would either convert the PCs or dine on them. They were quite creepy and deranged. They do agree that their temple was once "owned by the dwarves", and that "the ghost dwarf" has been tricked by them to let them use it. They called their cult leader Glynt, and his most faithful acolyte "Kathera". They also mentioned a "door that could not be passed". One cultist acknowledged it had something to do with the dwarves; both denied that they ever SAW dwarves in or near their temple. 

 

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