Lendore - Island of Adventure

To the Aid of Nolivari
Who's Organizing the Norkers?

Resting and recuperating for a few days, several members of the party take some time to get in some training for their new abilities. During this time Yoriek takes charge of reporting the results of the expedition to Portia. She is pleased with the results, and with the monsters cleared out, she can mount another trip that is more academically inclined. True to her word, she pays them the 650 Griffon fee she agreed to provide. Additionally, she reveals to Chiad, that Professor Washburn had left the scrolls and spellbook that Janus had commissioned in her charge. As the nearest folks to family, she gave it to her.

She also provided a letter of introduction for the intrepid group to the Professor so that he would see them. Yoriek took the lead in negotiating with him the identification of the nmagical item that they discovered while Searching for the Lost friends. They agreed upon a price and were able to identify some items relatively quickly, but needed to leave some behind as identifying items takes time and energy.

Yoriek spent some days in meditation and prayer while Arella, Chiad, Dinah, and even Argus completed some training in their various arts. After several days, they packed up and set out for Orlane. Yoriek wanted to investigate the “Haunted” House of Kanos that Artemis recalled. He wants to establish a base to return to outside the capital. The group decided that Mayor Ormond could provide them with a letter of introduction to the mayor of Farstead. He agreed to do so and so the party spent the evening in town before heading to Farstead the next morning.

Upon arriving there, they sought out mayor and judge Clayton Miles. They spent some time conversing with him on a number of Topics, including Janus’ insulting behavior, the vindication of Falrik Moondance, and the disposition of Kanos’ property. Before they could determine what could be done about acquiring Kanos’ mansion, a messenger arrived in Farstead seeking Dinah and Artemis. The message, from Aldrelle the Druidess, contained a directive for Dinah and request for Artemis to join her in the town of Nolivari to help the people there following an unusual attack by a tribe of norkers.

The party decided to join them in agreeing to meet with Aldrelle and the townsfolk of Nolivari to see if they could be of help to the town. Feeling that time was a factor, they traveled over field and meadow to the little town. Once there, they met with the druidess, the town ruler, Sir Corin and his wife, Siress Teliva. In that discussion, they learned of the increasing attacks by the norkers over the last few weeks. Aldrelle, concerned that someone was organizing the usually chaotic norkers, charged Dinah with determining who was marshaled the norker attack. Sir Corin added he would reward the group with 800 Griffons for neutralizing the norker tribe and bringing back any pertinent information. All members of the party, rewards and commands notwithstanding, felt as though helping the townsfolk of Nolivari was the right decision, and agreed to the task.

After spending the night in town, the rangers Artemis and Marty tracked the norkers back to their caverns, less than 10 miles away, in the southern foothills of the Dragonsteeth Mountains. Immediately as they entered the cave, they were attacked by a pair of norker guards. They quickly dispatched those and descended through a trap door down the ladder into the cave.

It leads to a small nearly square room with a door and a passage out. Choosing to force open the door the party finds a hallway that is “guarded” by a passed out norker. Having seen the destruction and damage caused in Nolivari and the surrounding countryside, Dinah killed the guard where he was befuddled is his cheap wine. Beyond the guard, the passage wound around to two doors. Opening the southernmost door, they found a room hewn out of the riock to form a prison of sorts. There they found a dead goblin and the skeletal remains of a dwarf. Among the living they found a merchant who had been captured and awaiting to die, a flind who had been tortured and was so close to death that they decided to put it out of its misery, and a norker named Kargh. Upon questioning him, they found that he was imprisoned for opposing the chief’s alliance with a human named Grakhirt. He said that if they would release him, he would show them how to find Grakhirt and the chief.

Yoriek and company debated this and finally agreed, releasing Kargh. Following him, he led them directly past two guards and into the throne room of the chief. Kargh, in his anger, charged the throne and attacked the chief. The guards and the warriors in the room with the chief, choosing not to take sides in this battle, attacked the party instead. While Kargh fought well and got into some telling strikes, the chief finally slew him. The party had magically held two of the warriors & guards, killing one other one in the process. A few well placed arrows took down the already injured chief and the group finally killed all the norkers present, just in time to have another one arrive to see what all the noise was about. They were able to dispatch him before he could go and sound the alarm.

Taking some time to loot the bodies, they grab some coins and jewelry and discover that the curtain behind the throne isn’t covering a wall , but an entrance to the chief’s chamber. There they discover a locked iron bound chest. Arella missed locating the trap in the lock and when she picked it, she was pricked by a poison needle. Fortunately, luck was on her side and she suffered no ill effects from the poison. The chest contained several thousand coins, some more jewelry, a magic spell scroll.

Emboldened by their good fortune and supported by the use of cure spells and healing potions, they pressed forward to find another locked door. Arella once again picked the lock to reveal a pair of chambers containing what looked to be the tribe’s supply of food and drink for the coming winter.

Taking another passage that led to a door, they open the door to find two norkers guarding another one who is sleeping. The close quarters combat prevents the entire party from getting involved, but noting the apparent layout, Yoriek leads half the party down a nearby passage to find a second entrance to the chamber, effectively surrounding the three norkers. After a short fight, they kill the norkers and loot their bodies.

Going back to look at the passages they passed through to surround the three, the party discover the norkers weapons cache (such that it is) and a cold storage cavern with more foodstuffs. They decide the best course of action is to leave the foodstuffs and let the citizens of Nolivari come retrieve them after they clear the lair. Making that call, they then head down the last passage only to have it branch. Sending a party member down each passage to listen, they accidentally disturb the female and young norkers in one of the caves, only to discover the two branches were connected and the screaming young alerted the surviving soldiers to the party’s presence.

Given the cramped and close quarters and feeling that they had pressed their luck enough for one day, they did a fighting withdraw, killing one more norker as they exited the lair. Once above ground again, they prepared for the expected pursuit, but none came and they retreated back to Nolivari without incident.

They reported to Sir Corin the events that had transpired and agreed to stay near in the event of another norker attack. With that, they went back to the inn for the evening.

Searching for the Lost
Sad News and Great Rewards

Training under the belt and gathering background completed, the company agreed to take the 500 Griffon ransom for the four hostages the bandits claimed to be holding. Guided to Bard’s Hill by Sean O’Leary, the party make the appointed meeting with Olberat, the bandit leader. Yoriek begins by requesting to see the captives and shows that they have the gold. By distracting him, Chiad is able to cast a Charm Person spell on him. Successful, she convinces him that instead of the full ransom, to accept on 150 Griffons and the magic horn she possessed. Without bloodshed on either side, she saved part of the ransom, unloaded a cursed magic item, and secured the release of the hostages. Additionally, she was able to determine that the bandits were leaving the area and heading toward Hommlet or Dagger Rock.

Deciding to return immediately with the hostages, they return to Lo Reltarma. Pleased with the return of the students and a good portion of the ransom, she offers to pay them to finish the mission of the missing Janus and party. The party accepts and they set off to return to Bard’s Hill the next day.

When they arrive, they find dead bodies of humans in the entry tunnel. Concluding that they were companions of the bandits, they pressed forward and found evidence that Mij’s passing by this area. In the entry, they found the bodies of the dead vulchings. Taking the passage to the north, they surprise a group of nine kobolds. Using that to their advantage, they are able to kill most of them before they can react. Combat goes their way and they finish them off without taking any casualties. They find about a hundred Bits, ten Griffons, and an unusual amulet.

Continuing on, out the West exit, they traverse a long hall to another chamber where xvarts are crouched behind a pair of turned over tables in a defensive posture. Having heard how quickly the combat went with the kobolds, the xvarts decided that an attack wasn’t worth it. The asked for passage to leave, that their issue was with the dead kobolds. Wary and suspicious, Yoriek made the decision to let them go. The xvarts used the opportunity to escape the vicinity and they departed without incident.

Deciding to leave by the north exit, a short corridor led to a narrower but longer chamber, that judging from the dust, had not seen a visitor in some time. Yet despite the dust on the tables, the lamps, and the strange hook with a tripod, the cabinets had been moved to block off the northwest corner from view. Exploring further, the party discovered a leathery skinned bipedal winged creature sitting in an apparent comatose state. Despite attempts to awaken it, there was no response from the creature. Finding little of interest, they decided to retrace their steps and check out the southern exit from the previous room.

They discovered a large circular room that seemed to be a hub of some sort for the carts they found about the complex. Unfortunately, this room also made a great home for several hundred bats, which the light from Chiad’s magic sword disturbed. While a bit scary, the party was mostly unscathed by the encounter, just a couple of minor bites from the bats. After about six minutes, the bats had cleared the room and the companions could see central hub more clearly. They came to the realization that the east-west exits were a continuation of the main entry corridor. Deciding that answers were more likely found deeper in the complex, they chose the west exit. A large gate blocked their progress and a door in the gate was locked. They made the call to be on the lookout for the unusual triangular key that appeared to be needed for the large lock.

As they continued south out of the main hub, Yoriek began to understand that the layout of the complex was symmetric. However they found the chambers to the south had more damage, not only to the rooms themselves, but the documents and accouterments contained within. In the next two chambers they found nothing alive. First they came across a dead Al-mi’raj, its head nearly sliced completely off and its horn carved from its skull. Pushing on to the next chamber to the south, they found the remains of Janus, Mij, and Samirah along with several bullywug corpses. While sad for their loss, they were not so sad to prevent them from taking the treasure the dead party had acquired.

They explored the southern end of the complex further, looking for the key to the gate off the west end of the hub. The discovered the rats nest and the papers that the rats had destroyed for nesting material. Finding no key, they had just made the decision to go back to the strange comatose creature, when it surprised them and attacked. Argus took the brunt of the attack by sheer virtue of location. Argus was injured, but well placed arrows from Artemis and Arella pierced the creature, while Argus gathered his wits and was able to finish it off. Yoreik used a spell to heal his wounds. Collecting the gemstones it was carrying, the rushed of to where he was located originally.

Arriving there, they found that the creature had treasure, but no key. They were perplexed until they realized that the hook and tripod item on the dusty table was, in fact, the key that they were looking for. Sensing that they were near the end of their search, they hurried back to the gate and unlocked it. The antechamber beyond contained a cart and the wall was partially crumbled. Their inattention and the camouflage of the attackers led to them being surprised by a pair of vilstraks. Sustaining some minor injuries, they were finally able to kill the rock creatures. The crumbling wall was where they had hidden some of their treasure that the party quickly collected.

They were about to enter the final repository when the columns came to life, swords drawn and blocking the way into the chamber. The warrior women that the columns had become said that they could not pass without the authority and the key. It took a few minutes but, Chiad realized that the key was in the document Portia had found. The key was the phrase, “Knowledge is Power”. Yoriek came to understand that the authority referred to the mantle of office mentioned in that same document. He was able to figure out that the strange amulet taken from the kobolds was that mantle. Presenting these to the columns, they were granted passage. Here they found they tremendous treasure trove of information that Portia was seeking. Taking the magical items they found and sample of some of the books they found, they returned to the capital, paid taxes on their gains, and retired for the evening.

Humanoids in the Hills
Back to the Caves

Taking stock of the need to bind a few wounds and divide up a bit treasure, the group spends a couple of days in Hommlet. They rest, settle tabs with Ostler Gundigoot, and prepare to make another run at these so-called Caves of Chaos. Caiolynn elects not to join them for this trip. So the seven of them, Atalanta, Oafee, Karl, Taylor, Spugnoir, Elmo, and Charles, make the half-day’s journey to the caves.

They decide to investigate the next Cave over from the last orc tribe they dispatched. They find no sentinels present but soon discover why that is so. Oafee sets off a trap intended to emsnare victims and warn the guards. The triggered trap brought a total of 15 guards in two groups from different directions. They dealt with first group injury free, only to be attacked from behind by the other. Charles took a pair of hits by crossbow bolts. Karl is able to cure those wounds while the fighters charge this second group and Oafee and Spugnoir hang back. As they fight the second set of guards, four females dart out from the direction the first guards came from attempting to sound the alarm to those deeper in the cavern. The party killed two of them, but the other two got by to sound the warning. Finishing off the guards, the party tried to block the expected attack attempting to block the tunnel with the trap net and igniting it.

The attempt to light the net on fire failed, but the attack did not come either. Debating a retreat, the decision was made to press forward. They came to another guard that they quickly dispatched. They were then confronted by the chief, who parleyed for the lives of his tribe. The party agreed to leave with the chief’s offer of his axe and his silver belt. They accept the offer and agree to retreat from the cave. They only stop long enough to loot the bodies of the dead guards. The group then returns to Hommlet.

After resting and recuperating for two days, the intrepid band returns once more to the caves to investigate the caverns in the southern slopes of the valley. They enter into the easternmost cavern to find a number of passages heading off in different directions. Oafee scouted the tunnel directly ahead to confirm it was truly a dead end, only to have a wandering group of goblins stumble across the main group in the entry cavern. The goblins do not notice Oafee, so as they attack the party, Oafee is able to backstab from behind. The group of goblins is killed with little injury. The south passage being a dead end, the group heads west stumbling into a guard post of goblins. These group fight valiantly, but are no match for the heroes. One of them did open a secret door and threw a bag into the cavern beyond before turning to attack. Before they checked the bodies of the goblins, there was a brief discussion about whether to go after the thrown bag.

It turned out to be a moot discussion, as an ugly ogre came through the door to attack. He struck a might blow on Elmo, who laughed at him and attacked the ogre, but missed. Spugnoir hit it with a Sleep spell and the creature fell into a magical slumber. Atalanta slit its throat while it laid there. Beyond the secret door were a pair of small caverns that were the home of the ogre. They collected up the ogre’s treasure and the bag that the goblins threw to him. (It contained 250 Griffons!!)

Emboldened by their success, the pressed on to the west, finding a short passage leading north and into the main lair for the goblins. At the sight of the armed intruders, the six baby goblins fled, the over a dozen women shrieked in terror and/or rage, and ten goblin warriors stood to defend their home. Spugnoir used his remaining Sleep spell and put the warriors and a pair of women to sleep. The remaining women fled out the exits to the north and west. The party (except Spugnoir) gave chase to the group that headed north. Elmo slaughtered 4 of the women goblins as they were fleeing, but the rest were to quick, As they gave chase to the north, the tunnel was guarded by four more goblin warriors. The women raced by leaving the warriors to attack by surprise with their crossbows. Oafee was injured but killed one. Elmo, Charles, and Atalanta fought the remaining guards, while Karl cast a Cure Light Wounds on Oafee. Taylor fled saying she didn’t want to die.

After the guards were killed, they decided to return to the main lair area. There they found Spugnoir killing the sleeping goblins and urging Taylor to rejoin the battle. Oafee, infuriated at her cowardice, attacked her from behind, severely wounding her. He threatened to kill her if she ever abandoned them again. They quickly looted the bodies, and retreated back to the east. Deciding as they went that there was no way to know who had been alerted to their presence. They left the caves and returned to Hommlet. Karl used his remaining cure spell on Taylor.

Upon their return they once again, settled up with Ostler and paid for a week’s lodging in advance. Both Karl and Oafee arranged to have their broken bowstrings repaired. The next day, Spugnoir was able to use his Detect Magic spell to determine that the some of the treasure collected was indeed magical in nature. Elmo returned to his farmhouse for some well earned recovery. The heroes settled in to recuperate and get some rest.

The End of the Serpent God
Finishing the Task... ?

While recuperating from their previous foray into the swamp and the Inn of the Slumbering Serpent, Artemis, acting on information she obtained while training with Thomas Stoutheart, comes to the Inn looking for them. To her surprise, Arella, Yoriek, and Chiad are there and quite alive. While they are catching up, Ramne arrives with a new aspirant to the druidic orders by the name of Dinah. She was led to Orlane by a vision to help rid the town of the monstrosity that has plagued it recently.

Ramne is convinced that that the arrival of Artemis and Dinah is a portent and is a good omen. He suggests that they again attack the lair of the naga because “the gods are with us in this.” The next morning the party head to the swamp lair to hunt Explictica. Once again, with Whiskers, leading the way, the party makes their way through the first level unaccosted and down into the burrows beneath. The weasel follows the trail of the foul troglodytes to their cavern. The corpses of the trogs and the mudviper they killed a few days previous were still there, undisturbed from the places where they fell. The group begins to explore the cavern in earnest. They find a small side cavern that contained troglodyte eggs. Noticing that they are within days of hatching, they debate whether to destroy the eggs or leave them be. During this discussion, a group of four zombies wanders into the warren. The party destroys the undead, with only Yoriek’s henchman, Argus taking a damaging attack. Yoriek cast a Cure Light Wounds spell to assist and the party moved further up the large cavern.

Exiting the troglodyte warren by the northeastern tunnel, the group came to a fork in the tunnel and chose the narrow northern branch. The narrow tunnel led past a creature resembling a smaller tyrannosaurus rex. Fortunately, it was in a side cave and chained to the wall of the cave so that it couldn’t quite reach the party. Dinah cast a spell to speak with it, but it could only express its hunger and desire to eat them. The only useful thing they gathered from it was that the snake lady had not provided him a meal lately. The party spent about twenty minutes going back and dragging the zombie bodies there to feed the creature. Then they continued on and came to an large, eerily lit cavern containing a pool that stretched out of sight. There was a large boat there to cross the pond.

The boat was large enough to hold the entire party, so they all piled in and began to propel themselves across the pool. Ramne, sensing that events were coming to a head, cast a Minor Globe of Invulnerability and told the group to stay close to him. A timely decision as the party was attacked by Explictica with a Fireball spell. Ramne’s magic protected them and those who had missile weapons attacked while Argus guided the boat toward the ledge containing the naga. Ramne’s prognostication seemed to be true as they rained arrow after arrow into the naga. Despite her own protective magics, accurate and deadly arrows pierced the creature and before she could even get another attack off, they had felled her with their aim.

The group plundered the naga’s nest for treasure, taking quite a haul of treasure. Perhaps the gods were truly with them that day quite a bit of the treasure taken was fit into a presumed bag of holding found with the treasure trove. Feeling victorious, they cut the head of the naga off and fed the rest of it to dinosaur-like creature and retired to Orlane for the evening. Casting a Detect Magic spell, several of the items were discovered to be magical in nature. For his part, Ramne selected one of the magic rings for himself, declining offers of coin to go with it and returned to his home because “old folks need their rest.”

Yoriek and Artemis took the naga’s head to the mayor for a trophy. He indicated to them that they would always be welcome in Orlane should they be looking for a place to settle down. They stayed the rest of the evening at the Inn and in the morning, they settled up with Ollwin & Belba, said good-bye and set off for an uneventful trip back to the capital.

In an attempt to identify some of the magical treasure they had found, Yoriek paid a visit to the Ferrantio Lirbrary to consult with Portia d’Ferranta. She was able to point him to someone who could help, but also had grim news. She told them the story of how Janus, Mijdrown, and Samirah had taken on a task for her. She had recently received a ransom demand for others that had been on the expedition, but there was no news of the three of them.

Fearing that it may be too late for Janus, Mij, and Samirah, the decision was made to first get training and identify the magic to see if it could be useful. These would occur concurrently with Portia trying to organize and raise the ransom. it took five days and a viisit to Professor Washburn, but the training and identification was completed and now they wait on Portia, hoping to see what can be done rescue the hostages…

Artemis Hangs For a Few Days
What Is She Up To?

Artemis has been seen in the northwest quarter of the capital, Lo Reltarma four days in a row, a little over a week from the split of the companions at Orlane.

In talking with Jarod at the Golden Gargoyle Inn, Artemis left word that she was seeking Thomas Stoutheart for some training. She then return to her apartment to rest for the day. Later that evening, she returned to the Rolling Roc for a meal of roast chicken before heading into the sewers for the evening. Since Will had been injured during the last trip, San himself accompanied her into the complex.

Staying to the east side of the complex, they re-explored everything that she and Will had covered. In doing so, they cleared a group of wandering giant rats, with only San sustaining a single bite. Finally, taking to the one corridor in the east side that had not yet been explored, they found themselves in a bedroom/lab where the companions had previously killed Albert Grimblade. Artemis and San found more giant rats nesting and feeding on his corpse. They were able to dispatch with ease.

They then headed north down the stairs that led to a graveyard or mausoleum where they found a pair of ghouls conversing with a frog over the most disgusting looking pile of large worm-like creatures with human faces. Catching them by surprise, Artemis killed them with well placed arrows and injured the frog. The frog began to morph into a small demon-esque creature. Not seeing San, Artemis flees only to realize that he was still inside. She headed back and called out to him as the worm like creatures were heading toward her. Her calling out gave away San’s hidden position, but nonetheless they were able to flee together.

They took a moment to plan a strategy and then returned to the area, but the little demon creature and the strange ugly worms were gone. They did not wait around, they returned to the entrance, only to be accosted by more giant rats. They killed them as well, again with only San taking damage. With that, they sealed the east side doorway, and returned to the surface.

The next morning, Artemis received word that Thomas was willing to train her (for a fee, of course). She consulted with San, who agreed they each needed a bit of a break from the sewers. With that Artemis, agreed to return after training.

Artemis Reappears
After the Kidnapping

Artemis was spotted in the capital, Lo Reltarma.

Waking up two and a half days after being kidnapped, Artemis wakes up to find herself the prisoner of a group of thieves under the command of San Snyder. San is “hiring” her (forcing her, really) to assist in clearing undead that have repopulated the sewers under the northwest quarter of the city.

Artemis agrees to help by requiring that she gets some assistance. San volunteers his cook, Will MacNeil to the task and the two of them head into the dungeon complex that night. Heading west into the old converted cult shrine, they encounter an ochre jelly. In their surprise, it launches an attack against Artemis, scoring a critical hit. She and Will flee immediately, probably saving their lives. San arranges for some partial healing for her and they enter again the next night.

They wander through the eastern portion of the old sewers, revisiting some of Artemis’ and her companions past exploits. They find a dead half-elf in the old prison, attacked during the clean-up efforts. A ring is retrieved from him and Artemis gives it to Wil. They also find the site where they had previously killed clerics of the cult. In honor of Yoriek (whom she does not know is alive), she collects some clerical robes found there. While at the site of the giant spider kill, a wandering ghoul finds them and attacks. Wil is injured and paralyzed by the initial attack. Refusing to leave him behind, Artemis continues to fight alone, slaying the monster.

As she searches the room for treasure, Will’s paralysis wears off. Agreeing that they have pressed there luck for the night, they make to exit, but they encounter a mantari flying down the hall. With two well placed arrows, Artemis makes short work of the beast and she and Will exit the sewers.

New Friends & New Adventures
Caoilainn Joins the Adventure

Taking time for Oafee to recover, the dwarf spends time drinking in the Inn of the Welcome Wench where he makes the acquaintance of Caiolainn Noigiallach, a halfling seeking adventure. She brings tales of a place called the Caves of Chaos. These caves are in the foothills of the Three Thanes near the confluence of the Whitefish and Yellowfin Rivers. There, rumors say, there are treasures to be had and dangers to be faced. Possibly a captured merchant and a magic wand held by foul humanoids, maybe even an ogre.

While intrigued, Oafee recalls the near disaster of just a few days earlier and decides to hire some extra muscle. He convinces four spearmen to join the party in quest for fortune and glory. The next morning, the fortified group set out to find the caves just after sunrise. They reach and find the caves just after noon that day, nestled in a small valley. They immediately spy three caves and choose the closest one to enter. Unfortunately, one of the spearmen is killed and another injured by triggering a pit trap. Rescuing the injured spearman, the first area they come to turns out to be a trash heap filled with dozens of giant rats. Deciding that this was not their cup of tea, they head another direction.

They find the warren of a small clan of kobolds. A battle ensues, Spuggy uses his sleep spell to put a number of the creatures to sleep, but they still have to combat nearly a dozen kobolds. They manage to kill all of the kobolds in the room except the young ones. While trying to decide what to do with the kids, they are attacked from behind by more kobolds. Another spearman was killed and the remaining one was injured. Oafee grabs a kobold child and tells the attackers that if the attack doesn’t cease, that they will kill all the children just like they have kill the men and the women.

Confused and unsure, the kobolds cease the attack and Oafee presses the advantage and tells them to bring the chieftain because he wasn’t dealing with underlings. They bring the chief and Oafee extracts a bribe from the kobold chief in exchange for the lives of the children. The party takes the treasure and returns to Hommlet for the evening.

The party takes a day to take stock of their situation. Atalanta and Karl decide to have the limner make them a pair of shields. One of the remaining spearmen, Brenton, decides that life is safer protecting caravans and rejoins a protection detail and leaves. The remaining spearman, Charles Magnan, agrees to stick around for another foray to the caves. Oafee asks around about anyone who may be interested in adventure and he is referred to Elmo, the son of a local farmer. After finding him, Elmo agrees to join the party for a new battle axe and a share of treasure. Three days later, healed and new shields in hand, the group sets out for another run at the caves.

This time they try a cave higher up in the side of the valley. This cave turns out to be the lair of a small clan of orcs. They attack one group of guards and kill them only to be attacked from behind by a second group. The guards overconfidence is their doom and they are killed without raising an alarm. Moving deeper in the cave, they discover the main common area without being discovered. Using Spuggy’s sleep spells, they manage to incapacitate 23 of the 30 orcs in the room. They make short work of the rest and have to kill the 8 orc children as well. They once again slay the incapacitated orcs, save one woman whom they question. after extracting intelligence on the chief they try to force her into helping with their plan to lure him out but she refuses and Oafee kills her. Without her help, they are still able to lure the chief and his wives out into battle. The wives are killed and Elmo tackles the chief and knocks him out. When he comes to, the question him about the area, but he refuses to cooperate and tells them to go to hell (not quite literally, but close). Oafee has Taylor kill him, but she guts him instead, leaving him to bleed out while his entrails spill on the floor. Atalanta takes some mercy on him and decapitates him.

They are able to raid his treasure area and they realize that they have completely cleared the cave. They take their treasure and return to Hommlet to divide the spoils.

Introducing Hommlet
The Rise of a New Group

An unlikely looking group of heroes entered the village of Hommlet looking for adventure. In this group was the unusually stealthy dwarf Oafee, the strange elf with an almost human name Taylor Fidgebob, the pious half-elf Karl Yandu, and the doughty human fighter Atalanta of East Lokris. Stopping at the Inn of the Welcome Wench, they order a few ales and ask and listen for rumors of danger and adventure. They hear that there have been strange happenings along the road of caravans and merchants disappearing. That’s when strange tales surface about possible brigands on the road to the east. The east road leads up into the Three Thanes, a trio of mountains that are home to all sorts of fouls humanoids and a gnomish village named Whitelake.

Of more interest, that road also led the way to an outpost of the Temple of Elemental Evil. The outpost and the temple were destroyed in a battle over 50 years previous. Locals didn’t remember many of the details from those days, but the heroes were able to ascertain that a strange cult, claiming to worship an Elder Elemental God tried to spread their influence and power with evil intent and the local forces for good came together and dealt it a death blow.

They also learned that this outpost was only a scant three or four miles outside the town. While the locals could not recall the exact location of the temple, the old moathouse that served as the cult’s outpost to lay claim to this part of Lendore was close enough to town that it was known that the place was in ruin and had become quite overgrown by the wilderness.

While at the Welcome Wench, they also met a wizard named Spugnoir, who was certain that the old moathouse contained some minor magical scrolls used by the old cult. He was looking for adventurers to accompany him there for exploration but his efforts were hampered by the rumors of brigands along the east road.

The heroes decided to hire Spuggy (as they came to call the wizard) to accompany them to the ruins of the moathouse. As advertised, it was in quite a state of disrepair. The drawbridge was flimsy after all these years and could not be raised if they had wanted to do so. One of the gates was nearly completely off its hinges and the other, while in working condition, had a large hole in it from a battering ram.

The group was able to easily enter the courtyard and gain access to the keep itself. Upon entering, they found themselves in a greatroom with many hallways and doors leading in different directions. They were exploring the greatroom when Taylor foolishly open a door without consulting the group and found herself confronted by a group of brigands. The heroes quickly came to the door and fought the brigands to a bit of a standoff. There were more brigands than in their group, but the heroes held the doorway to prevent them from using the numbers advantage.

Oafee took a grievous would and only the quick action of Karl saved his life. This gave the brigands the opportunity to push they heroes back enough that they could close the door against the standoff. The heroes backed off into the greatroom and readied missile weapons for the attack they knew would be coming. When the brigands had regrouped they launched their attack. Spuggy cast a sleep spell that affected all but the leader and the heroes were able to dispatch him after combat. They slayed the brigands that had been incapacitated.

They searched for treasure on the brigands and took what they could. Some weapons and armor and cash. Upon their return to the Inn of the Welcome Wench, Spuggy was able to determine that only 4 of the arrows they took were magical. Except for some chain mail (which was kept by Karl), the treasure was sold and the proceeds split amongst the heroes.

Bald Hill Expedition
Death Comes for Them

Janus spent the day negotiating with Professor Washburn of Eldoak College to remove the curse. Once they reached an agreement, it took a few days to prepare the spell. At the appointed time, Janus brought the required materials and Washburn performed the spell, paid the agreed amount, and made the arrangements for the other terms of the agreement.

Samirah, in the meantime, received a vision from Loki requiring her to go to the Church of the Big Gamble, make a 500 Griffon tithe and study for a few days. After the short period of training, she was able to cast more powerful spells.

While she was doing this, Portia d’Ferranta came to Janus and Mij, with a proposition. In going through lost material that Janus and company had uncovered a few weeks prior, they had discovered evidence of an heretofore unknown secret repository of knowledge. Portia wanted Janus to lead an expedition to find and recover the documents within. She provided horses, pack animals, provisions, linkboys, and guards.

The secret repository was located on Bard’s Hill, located about 11 miles west along the Elderson Pike. The journey only took a half day’s travel to reach the hill, but another day of searching to locate the entrance to the facility. In the search, they party killed a pair of fire beetles and a bear. Samira was able to use her spells to talk to a pair of badgers. While not terribly helpful, they did learn that there were other humans in the area and that the concealed entrance was about halfway up on the east to southeast side of the hill.

With this information, they found the entrance in about four hours. Entering the tunnel, they encountered five men. Samira cast a spell to immobilize three of them, and Mij and Janus quickly dispatched the other two after communication failed and the men attacked. The other three were questioned, whereupon the party learned that another man with them had fallen into some kind of sinkhole on the top of hill and that they were trying to get into the delve, but the door was locked.

Janus made the decision to press forward and tied up two fo the prisoners. Mij tied the hands of the third and was using him as a living shield. Finding the gate and door, Janus attempted to pick the rusted lock. After the failed attempt, Janus, Arris, and Mij combined their strength and forced the door open, breaking the door off of its hinges in the process. They found themselves almost immediately under attack by a pair of bird-like creatures. Mij and Arris killed them quickly and without a fuss. Fearing that their prisoners might escape and get help or attack from behind, Janus went back and slit the throats of the two that were tied up.

Not bothering to check out the room very much, they went down a side tunnel. This let them to a chamber that looked as though it had once contained many scrolls and or books, but most of the paper material had been shredded and/or eaten by rats and made into nesting material. Several hundred rats were there but only the giant rats attacked them. They killed the giant rats, the final prisoner being killed and Mij taking a minor wound in the process. With the normal rats milling about, they lit the lamp in the room, discovering that from a document standpoint, the room was a bust. They returned to the entry chamber, leaving the remaining rats to feast on the dead prisoner.

Janus led them down the main corridor, which lead to a large circular room. Their entry into the room, disturbed a large colony of bats. The bats swarm about them as they exited. The company killed a number of bats, taking some very minor damage, but otherwise remaining unscathed as the bats simply headed off down another tunnel. They then proceeded down a side tunnel off they circular room. This was a short trip to another chamber.

This chamber was much more humid and the content of the room had been damaged. The party was attacked by a horned rabbit. Mij killed it with one swing of his sword, nearly cutting it in half. They attempted to retrieve some of the documents but they were literally falling apart in their hands. They abandoned the attempt and entered a small passageway on the far side of the chamber.

This short passage was damaged and looked like it had shifted downward about a foot. It led to a chamber in which the floor was covered in about five to six inches of water. They saw eight small humanoid creature at the far end of the chamber that had built a sort of island out of the documents and books that remained. These creatures attack and the party engaged them. Unfortunately, they did not see the other three hidden in the shadows. The linkboys fled, and a pitched battle ensued, but the party was all killed. They were able to kill nine of the eleven before their deaths.

and the counter curse to fix it.

Taking a day in Stonebridge to recuperate and resupply, Janus, Artemis, Samira, and Mij make the decision to take on either a henchman or hirelings to strengthen their party. Janus, Samira, and Mij head to the local pub to look for prospects while Artemis remains behind to continue to heal. As they order their first round at the pub, they are approached by a man claiming to be a tax collector from Fairmont. After establishing, to the best of their ability, the credentials of the man, they end up paying a tax bill of 37 Griffons.

That being finished, they again turn their attention to the search for prospective henchmen. After interviewing two itinerant caravan guards named Jojo and Solo, they selected a young man by the name of Arris Nottington. After negotiating a salary with Arris, they are startled by a disturbance out in the street.

There they find an old man ranting and screaming about a person or persons (in his ranting, it is unclear) taking his magic, stealing his Art, etc. They begin to approach, but unexpectedly, he magically disappears from the street. Questioning folks on the street, they find that this is not the first time the man has been in town acting crazy, but the sudden disappearance is new. Mad Meerim, as they call him, often wanders about, muttering to himself, and reacting to the locals in quite a paranoid manner. They avoid him when possible due to his unpredictable nature.

As the three of them go back into the pub to finish negotiating with Arris and settling the deal, they inquire about Mad Meerim to the bar tender. He tells them that he has seen him in town off and on for years and that Meerim claims to be the apprentice of a powerful wizard, but until today he had never seen any magic performed by Meerim. the barkeep cannot recall the name of the wizard of whom Meerim claimed to be an apprentice.

They head to the general store to purchase some rations. Again, Meerim magically appears on the street and continues to scream at the top of his lungs, but also directing his accusations at the party and Janus in particular. Again he disappears into thin air. While they resupply, the proprietor says that is the first time that he has ever seen Mad Meerim teleport like that and that his paranoia seems to be getting worse. When Janus inquires further, he says that Meerim had always claimed to be the apprentice of a wizard named Iyam or Yeeram or something along those lines. Since he thought Meerim was a madman, he never paid attention to closely.

From the general store, they head to the blacksmith to get Arris a battle axe. While they are making their purchase, Janus again inquires about Meerim. They learn from the blacksmith that there was indeed a wizard named Iyarim, but that was years ago and further to the west. He was not sure if Meerim was actually his apprentice though.

As they are leaving the blacksmith’s workshop, Meerim appears right at Janus’ side. He grabs her arm and casts his curse on her. She immediately feels a spell leave her mind and a general sense of unease comes over her. Mij and Arris attack right away, but are unsuccessful. He teleports away and is not seen again. Lacking a better plan, they head back t the inn to retrieve Artemis.

Upon their arrival, however, they find the room ransacked and Artemis and her belongings missing. They inquire with the innkeeper to find that two men had come to the inn and asked about the four of them. They determine that the first one was the revenue collector from Fairmont, who the innkeeper verifies the identity and position of the man. The second man claimed to also be from tax collections, but the innkeeper had not seen this man previously and could not verify that he was actually with the government.

With no clues as to the whereabouts of Artemis and the curse continuing to work at Janus, the party made the decision to head back to Lo Reltarma the next morning to consult with Portia d’Ferranta at Ferrantio Library to gather information on Iyarim and Meerim. They set out the next morning, stopping at Fairmont to report the second visitor. They confirmed that the first agent was authorized and not an imposter. They continued on to the capital, arriving late in the evening. They acquired lodging at the PestFree Apartments.

The next morning they stopped at the Golden Gargoyle Inn to ask Jarod Walker if there had been any news of Artemis before heading to the library. At the Library, Portia was able to help them with information on Iyarim. They discovered that he was rumored to be buried on the easternmost hill of the Three Thanes under a black statue. Iyarim was said to wander the planes of existence before his death and it was on these trips that he discovered the secrets needed to create the curse that now afflicted Janus.

Portia was also able to warn the group that it was a day and a half journey overland to the hill. She recommended staying to the east bank of the Selane River as the Savage Woods were home to humanoid tribes that the guard has not removed. Following her advice, they made sure they had adequate provisions, and set out the next morning.

The journey was mostly uneventful, the only cause for concern a small band of orcs on the far side of the river near the edge of the forest. They did not antagonize the orcs, nor did the orcs pursue them. Indeed, it was not clear that the orcs even saw them though they were in open field. They camped for the night and completed the journey in the morning, arriving on the Thane around noon. Since the East Thane is not covered in trees and the statue that they were searching for was located near the top of the hill, it was not difficult to locate.

The statue was situated in front of a slab of obsidian. Janus, Mij, and Arris, attached ropes to the slab and moved it to reveal a staircase descending deep into the hill. The stairs were trapped to “buck” at random intervals, sending the half the party tumbling down the stairs with very minor injuries.

At the bottom of the stairs, they find a room with a throne which had a skeleton seated upon it. The skeleton had a staff in its hands. There were also a helmet and rotting cloaks hanging on pegs on one of the walls. Mij completely kicked over the skeleton and throne uncovering a niche containing bone scroll cases. Disturbing the throne also released an animated flying dagger that attacked them. They were able to damage the dagger enough to knock it out of the air, with only Janus taking any damage.

Examining the scrolls, they found that two of them contained spells, and one contained three strange words: “Archinon”, “Zabbalas”, and “Zoun”. They followed a hallway south to a door covered in the relief of a hideous laughing human face with hollowed eyes and mouth. The party spent several minutes taking the skull from the throne and the staff it was holding and poking them into the eye and mouth holes to no avail. Mij tries to kick the door open to no avail, and his touch triggered a second flying knife attack. Once more they are able to damage it enough to dispel the magic. They are about to give up when Arris suggests trying the door and checking to see if it is locked.

The door was not locked, nor trapped and the enter the next chamber. The only furnishings in the room were a small round table, a comfortable chair, and a footstool. The table had a small iron coffer and a book on it. Janus was not able to pick the lock, and the book was a worthless inventory of something from the past, but a scroll containing a spell fell out of the book. Next to the footstool was an old battered pair of boots.

The west wall had the frame of what appeared to be a mirror, evidenced by the shattered and broken shards of mirror on the ground. Samira picked up a shard and kept it. The southwest corner was hidden by a heavy curtain.

Looking behind the curtain, the party found a stone sarcophagus. When they touched it, a magic mouth appeared and spoke a warning to those who would disturb the rest of Iyarim. Janus and Mij lifted the lid and released another flying dagger attack. It was defeated with only Janus taking damage (again). The sarcophagus was empty of a body, but did contain a couple of old cloaks, a hat, some daggers. Additionally, an ivory box containing a brass ring, five potion vials, one with a red stripe, and a cedar box containing a wand.

No other means of exit being evident, the group made their way back to the entry chamber. A final flying dagger attack occurred. Again it was dispatched, this time only Mij taking damage. At this point, they decide to put the skeleton and staff, into the sarcophagus and re-close it. As they were leaving, Mij’s armor completely rusted off and was unusable. Taking the trapped stairs, they manage to make it to the surface with only minor injuries. They begin immediately to head back to the capital.

They stopped for the night and camped without incident. In the morning, Janus utilized the wand of magic detection and a read magic spell, to discern that she indeed had found the counter spell for her curse. They returned to the city without encounter. They rest for the evening and visit Portia in the morning. She agrees to introduce them to the wizards at the college the next day to see if they can help lift the curse.


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