Legends of Adamast

On the case

The party returned to Overlook leaving the Nexus behind them. Traveling all night, the party arrived at the High Hall with Kalad and made their report to the grateful council. The party learned that the siege on Bordin’s Watch was still ongoing, and that the King had sent part of his army to end the orc invasion there. Since the Watch was at least a 2 day ride away, the council had no more information regarding the invasion but they were sending a messenger to get the news from the front. Asking that their actions be kept quiet for the moment, the party advised the council not to release to the public the state of the invasion just yet and the council agreed to not build hope until it was clear that it was over. It would be 4 days until official word would arrive in Overlook and that would give the party time to find this MD person. Sleeping at the rooms provided at the high hall, the party rested after the long journey and then began to plan. Merric tried to get the more information about Davin from the council, but they had nothing more to provide. Somewhat defeated, the party returned to Beldin’s Rest where they were greeted warmly by Rory and Ruth who had kept their rooms for them. Taking a moment to set up a base, the party decided where to go next. Eman needed to report in with her order and complete some of her prayers and devotions, so she left the party to their planning and headed off on her own for a bit.

Looking at overlook, and the note that they had found, the party decided to head to Blister (one of the more notorious sections of Overlook) to find out some information. Deciding to start with one of the more popular Inns in Blister, the party made their way to the Mountain’s Hearth Inn to see if they could gather a lead. The Inn was busy and the female dwarven owner Reggen was very pleasant and welcoming at first, but quickly turned sour as she began to believe that the party was working for the lost ones. When Merric started asking about purchasing weapons somewhat loudly, Reggen pulled them to the side for a more private conversation. Telling the party that she would not stand for the Lost Ones running any business in her Inn and that she has made that very clear in the past, she offered them the possession that the Dark Creeper Iranda had left when it had stayed there. She demanded payment of 3 gold for the box, and wouldn’t budge in the face of Trazelle or Vesis. One the price was paid, Reggen told them to leave and let the others know that she will not deal with the Lost Ones ever. With a the box in had, the party returned to Beldin’s Rest and retired to their rooms with Ruth and Rory doting on their needs. The box was locked, but Merric made quick work of that and the box was quickly opened. Inside were a number of letters that were written in a strange language and a brass key. Not sure what any of it meant, the party slept for the night to get a fresh start in the morning.

In hopes of finding a scholar who could read the letters, the party went to Tradetown and asked about. One Eladrin, Mellis, was the only one of any help. He couldn’t read the writing, but knew that it wasn’t based on any of the surface world languages he knew. He also could see that they way it was written looked to be invoices or manifests, stating that he had heard a rumor that someone was arming the monstrous races in the outlying areas of the kingdom and these letters seem to somewhat confirm that fact. Thanking him for his time, the party moved on to Nine Bells in hopes that one of the temple clerics might know the language. Sahir felt the most comfortable in the Temple to Bahamet and felt that he has some sway there. Meeting with the head cleric, a Dragonborn named Charles, they offered up the letters in hopes that he could read them. Sadly, he could not, but he recognized the writing as that of the ‘little dark ones’ he sometimes saw in town. After some questioning, he stated that the dark ones, also known as dark creepers, are often seen in the presence of Lost One bodyguards. Thanking him for his time, the party decided to make their way back to Blister to find more information about the dark creepers and the Lost Ones. As they traveled in the streets, they found themselves in a mostly empty alley and two burly humans approaching with the intent to kill.

Sahir spotted the other humans in hiding, and it was clear that it was an ambush. From a distance, their mage fired lightning down on the party, while the others tried to overwhelm the party. However, they weren’t as skilled as the party and they were quickly dispatched. Searching their bodies, the party found symbols that clearly showed they were members of the Lost Ones. The mage was wearing a Necklace of Keys, which Merric took, and two strange letters. One letter was a bounty to collect the brass ring the party had found signed by someone named Modra. The other was a list of bounties that place a price on the heads of the party – everyone but Merric was on the list. With a whole new direction opened, the party decided to return to Beldin’s Rest to regroup and plan. Eman was waiting and chatting with Rory and Ruth, who had made a huge meal for the party. Eating and sharing stories, the party quickly became aware that something was very wrong with the situation and one by one, they passed out on the table, the last thing they could see were the now evil looking smiles of Rory and Ruth.

View
Operation Orc Boil

Kalad quickly prepped the party for the last bit of business in the Nexus, sealing off the tunnels to stop the orc invasion. In the center of the room is a platform with controls to close off the tunnels with the hot water from the pipes. All they needed to do was get there and make it happen. Upon entering the final room, the party was faced with a large, open room with the ceiling 100 feet above them. Along the wall was the stone catwalk that gradually led to the main platform and the control panel. 6 tunnels led off into the underdark at various points in the room, and it was these tunnels that the party needed to make sure were sealed off. As they began the climb toward the center, the orc army arrived. The first wave came out of a nearby tunnel and were easily dealt with, but they weren’t the only ones coming. Soon, Orog militants blocked the parties path and two orc bolters and their bellybows took position at the far end of the room so they could rain pain down upon the party.

Orcs began appearing from tunnels behind the party and in front and while they fought, the Orog chief Tusk and his Shadar-kai Warlock companion Myrissa made their way into the room. Each had a plan, and for Myrissa she needed high ground to be able to lay her curse on each member of the party. Tusk knew about the control panel and what it meant from the dwarves he killed that used to guard the Nexus. He slowly made his way up the catwalk to the control panel, while the party was locked down by his army of orcs. Sahir remained near the back of the party, dealing with the threats that kept appearing from tunnels they had already passed, while Vesis and Trazelle took the main push, trying to finish off the Orogs. Merric and Eman did their best at dealing with the ranged attackers. Merric would take shots to clear paths for the party, while Eman did her best to blast the bolters with righteous fire – forcing one of the bolters to fall from the catwalk to the ground below, a fall that the bolter just survived with her minor skill with acrobatics but destroying the bow in the process. Tusk was undaunted by the numbers of dead orcs that were piling up, since many more were coming. He focused his attention on smashing the control panel and making it inoperable. Myrissa took her time cursing as many party members as she could, but her attacks often missed.

With the Orog militants finally taken care of, the party hurried up the catwalk to stop Tusk and Myrissa. Eman forced another bolter off the edge of the catwalk, where she fell to her death, while Merric killed the incoming grunts that might threaten to block the party’s advancement. Sahir was busy with the seemingly infinite amount of orcs that kept coming from the tunnels they had already passed. Kalad ran up front with Trazelle and Vesis, knowing that they needed to get to the control panel before all was lost. Myrissa kept on taking shots at the group, but fell to Eman’s sliding trick, tumbling from her high perch. In fury, she unleashed her most powerful attack, ripping the life out of those that she had cursed before shadow jumping back to her place at the top of the center platform. Trazelle, Vesis and Kalad all charged Tusk once the path was clear, and Tusk showed them why he was leading the army. Huge swings of his sword cut everything around him, and Kalad jumped in front of one of Tusks swings to keep Vesis safe. Myrissa chided Kalad’s actions and wished him a quick death like his friends. She last curse was all he could take, and Kalad fell. However, the party had enough time to regroup and pressed the attack on Tusk, bringing him down before turning to Myrissa and ending her life as well.

The control panel was badly damaged, and initial attempts to repair it were proving to be futile. Merric quickly brought Kalad back to life, and with his expertise, they could start repairing the controls. But the tide of orcs was far from over, and more and more orcs kept pouring out of the tunnels. Trazelle and Vesis formed a protective line, allowing Sahir, Kalad and Merric time to repair the control panel. While Trazelle and Vesis fought, Eman kept up her ranged attacks, thinning out the orcs as best she could. But the army wouldn’t stop, and about 40 orcs had filled the hall all making their way toward the party. But it was too late, the control panel had been repaired and with a few switches, the giant plug that kept the water at bay was opened, and boiling water poured into the room. Within seconds, the first tunnel was sealed and the steam and heat was quickly growing unbearable. With at ladder nearby, leading up to an escape hatch in the ceiling, the party grabbed what they could from Tusk and Myrissa and fled up the ladder, sealing the room behind them and the orc army tried in vain to stop the flow of the water. Within minutes, they could hear the screams of the orc army and the heat from the water and then it was silent. The last route was sealed and the orc invasion had been thwarted. Kalad led the group back through the winding tunnels and out to the abandoned campsite.

In Myrissa’s bag, they found a note that added to the mystery. The note read:

“Myrissa,

I hope this letter finds you well. Our partnership in this endeavor has already proven quite fruitful and I believe that the orc army will find great success. I trust that the supplies that I sent are in order and to your liking, and that more awaits you once the orcs control Overlook. The payment we have agreed upon is to my liking and as promised I have sent one of my trusted servants – Iranda – to meet you with two more samples of what I can offer. You will know him by the hammer and sword he carries. Iranda will have further instructions on how to meet me upon your arrival in Overlook.

Glory to the Orcs, MD”

Gathering their horses and the ones left by the Farstriders, the party returned to Overlook victorious.

View
Fate of the Farstriders

After a brief rest, the party pressed on, into the next room of the Nexus. This was a large room, more industrial than the others with two long solid pipe along the west and east walls. Near the entrance, the headless body of one of the Farstriders lay out on the ground. The orc army had placed a small guard here that had been dealing with a pit of fire beetles before the party arrived. Near the pipe on the west wall, a strange small creature in a dark cloak fiddled with the controls for one of the pipes, but quickly stopped his work to help the orcs kill the invaders. The orcs put up a brave, but futile fight and the fire beetles decided to take advantage of the weakened orc forces to attack. Both threats were quickly ended and Sahir made sure that the dark creature didn’t survive. With the orcs down, the party could better take in the room and examine the body. Judging by the clothes and memory, the headless body is that of the Half-elf warlock, Jen. Looting the bodies and supplies, it seemed the dark creature had stolen some nice items from somewhere. An avalanche hammer and a longsword. The longsword seemed plain, but when Sahir held it, he could feel the eyes of Bahamut upon him and the sword was revealed to be a tool in fulfilling Sahir’s oaths.

Kalad informed the group that in order to seal off the nexus tunnels, both pipes needed to be opened with the controls. Easily done, Merric threw the switch and could hear the rushing water and feel the heat coming from the pipes. With that task completed, the party continued north and deeper into the Nexus. In the next hallway, the party had three choices – a door to the north, orcs rummaging in a room to the west and orcs rummaging in a temple to the east. The orcs to the west seemed busy and not paying attention, so the group charged east. Quickly killing the lowly grunts outside the temple room, the party was faced with a more pressing issue. Not only had the orcs destroyed the temple to Moradin, they had brought along a cave troll who was busy chewing on the remains of the rest of the Farstriders. With the party’s arrival, the orcs and troll turned their attention to killing these new arrivals. Trazelle and Vesis rushed forward to deal with the troll, while Sahir, Merric and Eman did what they could to put down the firebomb throwing orcs. But the layout of the temple and the size of the troll made it hard to maneuver and the party was set on fire by the bombs of the orcs. Trazelle discovered not only was the troll resilient, but it was also very strong as it grabbed Trazelle in it’s huge hands. Unable to break free, Trazelle was promptly used as an improvised weapon against Vesis. The troll swung Trazelle like a club, battering Vesis where he stood. Merric cleaned out the grunts with many well placed bolts and Eman helped Sahir wear down and destroy the orc bombers. Soon, all that was left was the troll, who was busily grabbing people and slamming them into their friends. Without access to fire or acid, the troll constant regeneration was difficult to overcome. But with numbers on their side, the party brought the troll to its knees and Sahir – who was on fire from one of the cinderbombs – threw himself atop the unconscious troll and allowed the fire to do its work. The party took a moment to carefully inspect the bodies of Edgar and the rest of his Farstriders, before finding more items of the orc army. A fine set of piecemeal scale armor was claimed by Vesis, and the group went back west to deal with the last of the orcs.

The western area consisted of bunk rooms, the kitchen and dining hall and the orcs who were ransacking them were completely unaware of what was happening around them, allowing the normally very noisy party to get the drop on them. Caught unaware, the orcs were no match and fell quickly. It was unclear what they were looking for in the bunks, but anything of value had been removed from the area and there were no signs of dwarves who used to protect the Nexus. In the kitchen, a choker had moved in and tried to kill Vesis as he explored, but it was no match and quickly came to an end. With the rest of the Nexus cleared and safe, the party only had the door to the north left .

View
Through the Vents

While the other orcs fell quickly, Og proved to be a formidable warchief. Dealing with the lesser units of the orc invasion, the party was soon left with Og and his two trusted defenders. Vesis did his best to keep the two orc berserkers occupied, dealing out damage but slowly being worn down himself. Sahir and Trazelle took the fight to Og, but Og wasn’t big on standing in one place for long. Dashing past the two, he sliced his large blade into Merric and Eman, who scrambled to put distance between the Orog and themselves. Sahir moved to intercept, while Merric did his best to keep Vesis alive with the onslaught from the orc berserkers. Eman called upon her gods fury to burn and slam the foes and soon the two berserkers fell. Og, seeing that the tide had turned, rushed to finish his first act – killing the dwarf paladin. Under the judgment of Torm, he stopped his attacks and rushed across the room. Merric hounded his actions with precise crossbow shots while Vesis moved to intercept. However, Vesis was low on health and energy and once the party trapped Og, he released his fury upon Vesis, felling the mighty fighter. That act of defiance proved to be Og’s last, and he was soon lying dead on the ground. Merric rushed to the paladin’s aid, while the others made sure that Vesis was patched up.

The paladin introduced himself as Kalad, and told them his story. He had been to Bordin’s watch and sealed the tunnels below the watch to stop the army from using that passage into the human lands. He made his way to the monastery, and did the same here, closing the tunnels off forever. There was one set of tunnels left, and that was in the Nexus below the Vents. This was the same place the Farstriders had gone, led by the arrogant Edgar. Kalad and the party were in no shape to move, and decided to spend the night in the lonely monastery to gather their strength before heading out to the Vents. Setting out before the sun had completely risen, the party made their way out of the mountains and across the plains to the Vents. There, they found the horses and campsite belonging to the Farstriders. The horses were nearly starved, having not eaten for days. The heated steam and smell from the Vents filled the air, making it hard to breath and kept any plant life from growing, stopping the horses from feeding themselves. Trazelle took care of the horses while the rest of the group looked for clues regarding where the Farstriders had gone. Sahir’s eagle eyes spotted faint tracks leading into one of the larger vents in the ground and once the horses were dealt with, the party made their way into the tunnels. The tunnels wound in strange patterns and the smell and heat made the trip almost unbearable. The tunnels would suddenly narrow from time to time, making progress slow, and pockets of sulfur made it hard to breathe. But soon enough, the party found the entrance to the Nexus. Just inside, Trazelle could see a group of orcs arguing about their next course of action. It seems that the path that they took getting here was too dangerous and one orc was suggesting they try their luck in the vents when they all spotted Trazelle.

Quickly springing into action, the party engaged the small band, putting them down quickly but not before one of the orc bombers blew himself up and on Sahir as a last defiant act. As they moved deeper into the Nexus, the party could see the hallway the orcs were arguing about. Kalad called it the gauntlet and the orcs has spring the trap. At the far end of the hallway, they could see a crossbow on legs that seemed to move freely with two iron dogs guarding it. On the walls, the magical crossbow trap has been sprung and the crossbows attacked anyone foolish enough to walk in the hallway. Standing at the top of the stairs, the party was relatively safe and Eman and Merric were able to destroy the two closest crossbows on the walls before their attacks proved to be useless against things further down. With no other choice, the party made their way down the gauntlet, destroying the mechanized terrors in the processes. Winded from the battle, the party took a moment to rest in front of the door that lead deeper into the Nexus.

View
Into the Depths

Unable to see down the spiral staircase, the party descended into the depths of the mountain and the Monastery. The stairs opened into a large hall that was once the sleeping and training chamber of the monks in the Monastery, but now it was the scene of a massacre. Bodies of dead dwarves littered the hall, while their murderers rummaged through their belongings. The Orcs turned to face the party, and the group noticed that more than just plain Orcs had joined the raid. There were also Orogs – half orc, half ogre monster who are move vicious than the Orcs. With the sight of the intruding party, they orcs rushed to attack. Trazelle and Vesis took to the front line, while Sahir, Eman and Merric spread out across the back to deal with any surprises. While the main force of the Orcs and Orogs fought the party, one Orc held back, not sure of what to do. When the tide of the battle turned, he took off to warn the others. The party made quick work of the Orcs and Orogs, and when the battle was through they surveyed the room. The hall was beautiful and very ornate, a large statue dedicated to a dwarven hero featured predominately in the center of the room. A quick searched showed that the Orcs had cleared out anything of value. Most interesting was the fact that it was clear that the Orcs had not attacked from above, but rather had somehow come from below. It was most likely this surprise attack that caught the Monastery off guard and lead to the slaughter.

Pressing on for more answers, the party followed the Orc runner down the hall and out into a large open cavern lit by glowing fungus and natural lava pools. It was hot, and the cavern fell sharply away from the ledge they stood upon down to a strange cave off in the distance. A sturdy, but treacherous stairway had been built into the cavern allowing the dwarves access to the cave at the foot of the stairs. While the slope of the stairway was more gentle than the floor of the cavern, it was narrow and one could easily topple from it into the depths of the cavern below. The Orc runner was waiting for the group on the first landing, having summon support to deal with the party. Not only had the Orc called archers that could strike the party from anywhere on the stairs, but a large Orc Sergeant , his underlings, and pet drake joined in the defense. Trazelle charged forward down the stairs, throwing herself into the fray but away from support that could keep her alive. While Merric did his best to get to her, Trazelle took the brunt of the attacks, arrows and clubs striking her from all sides. Merric also had reach with his crossbow, and took aim at clearing as many drudges as he could while trying to get to Trazelle. Vesis and Sahir kept the Orc runner occupied on the first landing, while Eman divided her attention between the swooping drake, the Orc runner, and the approaching drudges. Merric was able to clear out many of the lower Orcs, which bought Trazelle some much needed breathing room, while Eman, Sahir and Vesis put down their orc. The Orc Sergeant rushed up the stairs to confront Trazelle and effectively stopped the party in their tracks, allowing the archers to try and pick them off. Sahir used his connection to the feywild and slide through the planes of existence to grab the Orc Sergeant before teleporting with the Sergeant once more. Sahir and the Sergeant reappeared, with Sahir on the stairway and the Sergeant hovering in mid air. The Sergeant scrambled to grab hold of the side of the stairs, but was unsuccessful and fell a long way to the cavern floor, being gravely wounded in the fall. With the path clear, Trazelle and Vesis brought the fight to the archers and Eman and Merric turned their attention to the swooping menace that was the drake. Merric tooks shots at the drake while the drake took chunks out of Merric, but it was Eman’s blast that finally took the drake down. The Orc Sergeant limped and slide down the cavern floor toward the cave, but Merric put a quick end to that with a well placed bolt to the head. Vesis, Sahir and Trazelle wiped out the last of the archers and the party made it down the rest of the stairway and stood before the large cave.

Carefully making their way into the cave, they could hear shouting. Peaking out from behind the rocks, they could see a full platoon of Orcs, lead by a large Orog Warcheif. The group of Orcs was watching the Orog beat a dwarf into submission, while demanding that the dwarf reopen the tunnels. Looking around the cavern, they could see a collapsed tunnel and a large fire of molten rock and debris slowly spreading in the middle of the room. With their backs turned to the party, they decided to make the most of the opportunity to attack with surprise. Quickly clearing out most of the underlings, the party turned to face an Orc Eye of Gruumish, two strong Orc bodyguards and the leader, Og the Orog. Filled with anger and frustration, Og launched himself at the party, doing what he could to wipe them out. The Orc Eye hindered the party the best he could, but Trazelle knew his power, and made sure that he fell quickly. With Sahir’s assistance, the Orc Eye fell, but Og was soon upon them. Bent on their destruction, Og’s skills proved to be a force to be dealt with.

View
Orcs Abound

The warchief proved to be a powerful full and his band of true believers did their best to bring down Trazelle and the rest of the crew. But mostly Trazelle because of the past. Sahir focused on the eye of Grummish while Trazelle and Vesis kept the warchief occupied and locked down. Merric and Eman peppered in shots where they could while avoiding the crushing blows of the warchief’s lieutenants who moved around the battle field trying to wear the whole group down. Eventually, the orcs fell before the might of the party and only warchief Damok was left standing. His pride wouldn’t let him stop until he saw Trazelle subjugated before him or dead, but that wasn’t meant to be. The advance scouting party had been dealt with, and the party began to examine the bodies to learn any information possible. Trazelle noticed that the Orcs being lead by Damok were all from different tribes, tribes that used to be hostile toward each other. The Orc priest had a few rituals, an everlasting basket of rations and a divine rod that the party was able to put to good use. Dealing with the bodies, the party continued their trek to the mountains, camping at the foot of the mountain climb as night fell to get a better start on the day.

The winding mountain pass to the monastery was easy to follow and the large walls and massive gates that protected the monastery loomed before the party of heroes. Small wisps of smoke could be seen behind the wall, and Merric called out to the protectors of the monastery to let them know they had arrived. Silence and shuffling footsteps were the only replies. Sensing something was wrong, the party moved to the gate to see that it was oddly open already. Pushing their way in, they discovered that the Orcs had already arrived and a few had made camp in the courtyard of the Monastery. Eager for a fight, the Orcs quickly engaged the party but were quickly put down. It was clear that the Orcs were not expecting anyone to arrive and had place only a minor guard at the front. Quickly moving forward, the party entered the Monastery proper and found a blood bath in side. Bodies of dead dwarven monks lay on the floor before them and Orcs infested the walls.

Upon the main dais of the Monastery, an Orc Eye of Grummish stood and ordered an attack. The Eye had shattered and desecrated the holy alter and howled angrily at the party as they made their way into the Monastery. Two orcs peppered crossbow bolts down upon the party from catwalks above while the Eye called forth dark magics to try and slow the party down. Trazelle and Vesis rushed forward to bring this to a swift end, while Sahir, Merric and Eman took care of the Orcs with the crossbows. The Eye was not alone, and reinforcements showed up from behind the dais to help finish off the party. Ultimately, they proved to be no match for the heroes and quickly fell. Standing on the dais, the party could see that the reinforcements had come from a doorway located on the back of the dais. Peering into the doorway, they could see a long, spiral staircase that disappears into darkness and leads down into the depths of the Monastery.

View
Old men and Old Flames

Spending a nice night in Belden’s Rest, the party was ready to start another day of investigation. The owners, Ruth and Rory Teng – a half-elf and human – were a pleasant couple and answered as many questions as they could. The town was clearly on edge with the impending orc invasion, and that was on most people’s lips. Any trails toward the mystery of Davin’s death were fading away. With no solid leads, the party went to the Grey Redoubt of Rufus Crumley, a rumored necromancer in Shantytown. Making their way back to Shantytown and the grey tower, they pound on the door of Rufus Crumley. Rufus is an older man, with a raspy voice, who is clearly paranoid as he opens only a small window in the door to see who was there. The party asked about a job, but with Eman and Sahir in view, Rufus doubted their willingness to work with him. Things went downhill in the negotiation and Eman demanded that Vesis knock down the door. After an initial and surprising refusal, Vesis agreed that the door should come down. Seeing that the party would not leave and would easily damage his door, Rufus let him inside. In the poorly furnished salon that served as the entry, Rufus wanted to know what they wanted from him. Sahir could smell the faint smell of death, very cleverly hidden and then saw something shamble past behind the only other door in the room. As Sahir moved to see what was behind that door, Rufus blocked the way demanding to know what they wanted. Teleporting behind the door, Sahir could see a zombie roaming the hall. Insulted and angered by the invasion of his home, Rufus threw open the door and demanded they all leave. At that point, Merric could see that the zombie used to be one of Davin’s crew. The party demanded to know where Rufus got the body and he told him that he paid for it fairly from the Lost Ones. He even offered to pay Merric for the body since it seemed to upset him, but negotiations were done. The party had a lead, and left the old man alone with his dead.

Questioning the populous of Shantytown about the Lost Ones netted few results. Most people seemed very scared by the question and one person told them that if they keep asking so many questions, the Lost Ones would find them. Deciding to set a trap, the party went to find a local inn to stay in Shantytown. The easiest to find was an establishment called Clean Sheets. A run down, dirty and completely questionable establishment – Clean Sheets fit the bill. Trazelle lead the group in and met Yarrin Dalovoy, the Halfling who runs Clean Sheets. A strange looking fellow with a large scar on his left cheek, he did his best to try and set the party straight. According to Yarrin, there is no group called the Lost Ones, it is just a trick people play on Rufus to get him to give them money for corpses. Not, according to Yarrin, do you need much of a story for Rufus to pay for the dead since he went crazy years ago and just stays in his tower talking to his dead. Eman did her best to find any lies in Yarrin’s story but the Halfling was speaking truths. Thinking that the best course of actions was to pose a rich patrons ripe for a thieves guild to steal from, the party paid a very small amount for a few rooms in Clean Sheets. Seeing the rooms, it was clear that Clean Sheets was a complete lie and the conditions in the inn were worse than sleeping outdoors or in the gutters. Before they could settle in, Megan Swiftblade found them and told them that the council was calling all adventurers together for the news.

The party went with Megan to High Hall and through the maze of corridors to the council chamber. The all dwarf council let the adventures know that the orc invasion was true. Elder Cadrick, the youngest of the dwarves, spoke to the crowd. The plans were that most of the adventure groups would stay in Overlook to help defend and a segment would be sent to Bordrin’s Watch in the mountains, which is on the main passage into the Orc lands and has stood as the main defense against any uprisings. Edgar Sommerfield and his Farstriders would be going into the vents, tunnels near the mountains to make sure that orcs could not use that as an entry point. The party would be going to the Monastery of the Sundered Chain to make sure that the monks are warned and evacuated in case of orcs. This seemed to anger Edgar for some reason, and it was stated that Edgar wanted to make sure his group was on the most difficult and glorious of the tasks. With their payment arranged and task in had, the party left overlook with a map on how to get to the monastery.

About 5 hours into the trip and almost to the mountain range, the party came across what must be an advanced scouting party of orcs. However, the lead orc and war chief was thrilled to see Trazelle again, and it was discovered that this orc was the leader of Trazelle’s tribe. Believing that Trazelle was bring him a sacrifice, Warchief Domak was quick to anger with Trazelle turned on him. And the epic battle began as the party of orc looked to spill fresh blood and start a new war.

View
Never split the party

Each member of the party went to their own rooms to rest for the evening, or at least that was supposed to be the plan. A distraught Merric had a very different idea however, and quickly penned a note to Trazelle who he thought was the only person actually interested in helping. Slipping the note under her door, Merric slipped out of town and summoned up his ghost horse to ride to Overlook on his own. Merric wouldn’t get to Overlook however. Surprised by bandits on the road, he was quickly overtaken in his exhausted stated, bound and gagged and brought to the camp of the bandits. It was clear that they were going to rob him and most likely kill him once they had everything they needed but that quickly changed when the Big Man who was their leader discovered the secret seal of the King. Merric could only hear snippets of their conversations and learned that they had deserted the army out of fear of facing the Orc armies again who were said to be moving against the kingdom in direct violation of the treaty. When Trazelle awoke back in Brindol, she found the note.

“Trazelle,
Thank you for offering to come with me to Overlook. I’m sorry I couldn’t wait, I’ve decided to go on ahead because I didn’t want the trail to get any colder than it already has. Also, if the half-orc Vician is involved, it might be easier for me to get some answers without you at first. If you are still wanting to help, I’ll leave word for you at the Inn closest to the Western entrance to in Shantytown; just outside of Overlook proper. Tell the others I had a great time working with them on the last job and that I wish them the best of luck with whatever they pursue next.
-Merric”

Waking up the group, they all rounded up their supplies, saddled up their horses and quickly pursued their missing friend. Without the benefit of Merric’s traveling chant and ghost horse, they could not move as quickly and nearly wore their horses out. It was near sunset on the second day that they found the scene of the struggle. Trying to sneak toward the campground, Trazelle took lead and walked forward into the camp. The Big Man (clearly an old and grizzled soldier who had seen many a fight) and his bandits immediately went on guard and demanded to know why they were here. Sahir’s hawk like eyes spied a Halfling in a nearby tree with a crossbow trained on Trazelle and he slowly made his way into position. Trazelle did her best to hide the truth and told them she was looking for a Halfling not knowing that they had found Merric’s seal. Already paranoid, the Big Man shouted, “The King’s men are here! Kill them!” and charged at Trazelle. The Big Man was truly a strong fighter and his large and ugly cudgel was punishing. He slammed it with full force on anyone who was nearby, while his crew held back and took harassing shots from a safe distance. Merric finally finding his opportunity to act, worked free of his bonds while Sahir teleported himself into the tree to deal with one of the Halflings. Eman pelted the Big Man from afar while Vesis took up dealing with the Big Man allowing Trazelle transform into her panther form to break free to deal with the resident Mage and bandits. The Big Man was undaunted by the things the party was throwing at him and his cudgel’s brutality was only matched by his hard head that the Big Man liked to slam into Vesis. One of the other Halflings moved into combat and pelted the party with poison tipped crossbow bolts while Sahir fought melee in the tree with a Halfling who now had a poisoned short sword.

As the battle raged, it was clear that the crew of bandits was well trained and Merric shouted in anger and vengeance, urging the party to bring down the Big Man who had captured him. Attacking from all sides and all angles, the crew kept the party on their toes, poisoning sapping their strength and the Big Man’s brutal head butts and club knocking them senseless. Trying to buy some cover and time, Trazelle summoned up a field of planets to give them cover, but the Big Man would keep most of the party out of it, attacking less armored folks with his frenzy. But the party proved to be that much better and brought the Big Man down. His crew, the mage already dead, one of the Halfling quickly falling to Sahir, were completely demoralized at the death of their leader and made a break to run. But their crimes would not go unpunished and each one fell to the party’s version of justice. Merric thanked his new friends for saving him, admitting that it was foolish to run off on his own. He let the group know that the bandits were soldiers fleeing the army and dug through the bag that the mage was holding for his stuff. The bag was a Bag of Holding and had more treasures than just Merric’s items. Inside, they found a rare Brooch of No Regrets and a strange gem. At first, no one knew what it was but Sahir examined it and realized that it was a Polyglot Gem and holding it would allow the person to understand Deep Speech, the language of the Underdark – a very odd and rare find. Exhausted, the group decided not to let a perfectly good campsite go to waste and settled in for a night’s sleep.

Up with the sun, they made their way toward Overlook. The roads got more crowded as they approached Overlook and those few they met on the road said that adventurers would coming to help fight the Orcs and refugees were heading to Overlook for the safety of the 4 walls. Overlook came into view, the large stone walls and gates clearly visible from a good distance away. The outer walls were 100 feet tall,—taller where they travel over higher elevation. Each inner wall stood another 20 feet tall. They were approaching from the west and entered the outer district of Shantytown. The streets of Shantytown were little more than mud paths and the buildings were mostly tents and lean-tos with a few wooden buildings scattered hear and there. However, the was one large tower that leaned slightly and was made out of grey and black stone. It stuck out of the morass of Shantytown like a index finger above a fist. When pressed, the people of Shantytown said it was The Gray Redoubt of Rufus Crumley. Rumors about Rufus Crumley were that he was a dabbler in necromancy and the dark arts and people said that he buys cadavers. Most people seemed afraid of him.

Merric, needing to find out what happened to Davin, went to the most likely place he thought Davin would have sought work, the rich and opulent section of Overlook called Stonehammer. The glorious and soaring buildings of Stonehammer were a stark contrast to the piss and squalor of Shantytown. However, no one would talk to the party on the rich streets of Stonehammer, the upper crust not willing to lower themselves to talk to a band of adventurers. Servants in the quarter suggested the group head to Tradetown where most adventurers spend their time. Tradetown was a lesson in diversity. Every race was here, shops sold anything people wanted and taverns and restaurants dotted the streets. It smelled real in Tradetown and the group found themselves in the Coxcomb Spirits, a very fine restaurant. The tavern was full of adventurers, which seemed to stress the staff out slightly. Making their way inside, the party picked out to clear adventuring bands. Merric introduced himself to the first group, discovering that they are the Freeriders. While they were helpful, they had only arrived a few days ago themselves and had never heard of Davin. The other group, rumored to be more famous, were the Farstriders lead by a haughty man named Edgar Sommerfield. Edgar seemed to know Davin and didn’t think very highly of him. He didn’t know where Davin was and clearly didn’t know he was dead, and was too absorbed in himself to see the damage his words were having on Merric. Eman worked the gossip angle, but most people just wanted to talk about the Orc invasion. Most didn’t want to talk about Vician the cruel because it was too dark of a subject. Ragnum Dourstone, the dwarven cleric of the Freeriders, did his best to comfort Merric, promising to give him any information they could find and strongly suggesting they sign in with the city council. With no real leads, they went to the city center and signed in with Elder Cadrick.

Not sure what to do, Elder Cadrick suggested that they stay in High Hall, near the council should they need them. Once they informed him they were looking for Davin, he produced records that Davin had signed in about 3 weeks ago and was staying at Belden’s Rest in Tradetown. Hoping to find more information there, the party agreed that Belden’s Rest as also where they would stay and made their way back to Tradetown. A lovely inn run by a older couple, Rory Teng a human and Ruth his half-elf wife, the party found the place to be pleasant and welcoming. After a short negotiation with Rory, the party retired to their rooms to get a fresh start in the morning.

View
A surprise party

The party continued to press forward, after examining the altars that the goblins had changed to worship Gruumish, instead of Vecna. It was hard to tell which was worse. Moving south through the doors, they found the room with the displacer beast statues and the cook, Mirtala, tied to another altar at the far side of the room. They weren’t alone as three large dire rats charged at them, protecting the room and their prize. At first, it seemed that only the rats were in wait, but soon their spriggan masters appeared. However, the forces would get no help in fighting the party and they all soon fell. Mirtala was nearly catatonic, and Eman could tell that she had not only suffered physically (Mirtala was wracked with filth fever) but that the time as a play thing for her captors had left her mind broken as well. Attempting to bring her out of her stupor, Eman tried to speak with the woman but lack the skills or empathy necessary to elicit a positive response. Merric’s softer tone and more charismatic manner brought Mirtala out of herself just enough to get her to follow the group. Trazelle forced Sertanian to be Mirtala’s watcher and the party gathered back together to find the last prisoner.. the witch.

Knowing that Zerriksa was held near mushrooms, and that north from the entrance was the mushroom room according to the goblin, the party asked the townsfolk to remain in the entrance while they rescued Zerriksa. The room they found was indeed full of strange mushrooms. It had a wet and moldy smell and bits of debris from what might have been furniture. The room was guarded as well by three rage drakes who immediately set upon the party. The mushrooms themselves were hazardous and Trazelle and Vesis were able to warn the group to be careful around them. Vesis and Sahir did their best to split the attentions of the drakes while Trazelle charged head long into battle, and was savaged by drakes as a result. But ultimately, the drakes and mushrooms proved to be just a small bump in the road and were quickly overcome. As they approached what was to be the final room of the crypt, they could see an old woman trapped in a circle of green light. The woman was Zerriksa and was less than happy to be hungry and left alone in the dark dungeon. When Eman suggested that Zerriksa was a witch, Zerriksa took her to task informing the group that she only said that to scare the goblins into treating her better which landed her in this prison. When Trazelle tried to poke the circle with her hammer, she got a nasty shock in response. Sahir, being quiet and observant, could tell that the power of the circle fluctuated on a regular basis and while Eman made her case to the group about not trusting the old woman, Sahir simply pulled her free of the circle and the magic protective circle depowered itself.

With the treasures and citizens rescued, everyone made the 8 hour trip back to Brindol. Arriving at night, the town was overjoyed at the party’s success. The councilman showed them back to their room to allow them a good rest and paying them properly for their service. The next morning, the town has a surprise for them. A party was thrown in the center of town to celebrate the triumph over the goblins and the return of the citizens. Eman found some locals to gossip with, Sahir and Vesis watched the crowd while Sahir was happy to have completed his mysterious mission for the monks. Trazelle ate and drank and was given a cool shoulder by the town instead of the ice that she had received before. Merric took to the stage and sang songs of glory and joy. The party was in full swing and everyone was having a wonderful time. As the party played on, a small chest was delivered to Merric. Curious, the party gathered around while Merric opened the surprise. Sadly, the chest would hold no joy as the head of Merric’s best friend and closest thing to family was stuffed inside. Davin’s mouth held a note written in his own hand asking a simple question, “Where were you?” Devastated, Merric fell back, unable to keep the shock and tears from his face. Trazelle was more curious than disturbed and Sahir took a moment to quietly close the chest and suggest returning to their room.

The party quickly left the now ended celebration and returned to their room. Once Merric regained a small sense of composure, he cast the last sight vision ritual to gain any clue as to what happened. As the world went dark for Merric, he could suddenly see through Davin’s eyes and hear through his ears. Merric could see the note on the table that Davin had written and could hear Davin’s plea for mercy. Then Davin’s head hit the table with a sickening thud and Merric could just see the body of a half orc looming over the bodiless head of Davin before the vision faded and he was back in the room. Once relayed to the group, the most likely answer was the half orc was Vician, known to be a problem in the area. The group did their best to try and find out who delivered the chest but it was just part of the normal trade and delivery from Overlook and nothing remarkable happened to make it memorable to the inn keeper. The councilman had no answers either, about the delivery or Vician. But he had heard that Overlook was claiming that the Orcs were gathering to invade and that Overlook would be the next stop for work. Merric knew that Davin was also in Overlook on some job, but didn’t know what. Trazelle agreed to help Merric, more out of curiosity perhaps than concern and the group decided to make final decisions in the morning. Vesis remained strangely quiet through most of it, however Eman’s keep insight convinced her something more was there.

View
There rat.. there castle!

Bruised and battered from the fight with the wight, the party took a moment to rest and try to figure out the next move. Trazelle noticed something in the adjacent room, and saw a demon pacing back. Moving a bit closer, the demon saw Trazelle and flew into a rage clearly wanting to kill her. However, it was trapped in some sort of invisible prison, and the demon could do little more than throw itself against the clear walls. Curious, the group moved closer to the trapped demon to see just what was going on. It was a strange and vicious looking creature but safely on the other side of the wall, that was until a wererat appeared from the hallway to the north and yelled, “Crypt guardian, I release you!” The demon was immediately freed and attacked the party, throwing itself at Trazelle in an attempt to rend her limb from limb. The party quickly formed up to fight the demon as two more wererats appeared from the north hallway to join the fight. The wererats were not the best fighters, but it didn’t matter since they liked to bite and their bite carried disease. The demon fought with mindless ferocity, claws and scratching anyone that was within range, and the wererats weren’t much better in the intelligence arena and all of them were quickly put to rest. But the toll of fighting was getting to be too much for the party. Those bitten were doing their best to fight off the filth fever that was carried in the rats bite, but it was getting clear that they were going to need to rest and do it soon.

Checking out the hallway where the rats came from, they found an another door, behind which they could hear movement. Attempting to get a small peek inside, Trazelle attempted to open the door quietly, but misjudged and threw the door wide open. Three more wererats and another spriggan had made this new room their home. The room was clearly some sort of temple with a giant black obelisk at the north end that absorbed light just like the strange sun pattern they had found earlier. The rats and spriggan quickly sprung into action, and the spriggan summoned forth a mighty wind that blew most of the party down, sliding them across the ground. Vesis charged into the room, catching one of the rats and the spriggan nearby. Trazelle made her way into the room and summoned forth mystic plants to help protect her new allies and hinder the rats. Two of the wererats avoided the plants and dashed into the hallway to attack Merric, Sahir and Eman. Eman seemed to be the focus of their attacks, and they did their best to bite and claw her. Sahir ran forward and called upon Bahamut to teleport himself and one of the rats back into the plants for a little alone killing time. The spriggan tried to get away from Vesis, which proved to be a fatal mistake and the dragonborn fighter’s axe split him in two. Trazelle, Vesis and Sahir made quick work of one of the wererats and a lucky shot from Merric’s crossbow finished off the other, while Eman was plagued by the last remaining wererat. With the tide turned, the party surrounded the last wererat and force it to surrender. Transforming back into it’s human form, the wererat was nothing more than a teenage boy. Intimidated by the group, especially by Vesis and his deadly axe, the teen spilled everything he knew, which wasn’t much. Wishing the world to be cleansed of this evil, Eman suggested that Vesis finished the job. Much like the goblin before, Vesis’ axe was true and deadly and the young boys cursed existence was ended, release into death being the final mercy given.

The room held the last of the stolen treasures of Brindol, and the sword that Sahir was sent to find at last recovered. Studying the strange obelisk, it was clearly an idol to Vecna and powered by the dark energies that spring from the evil deity. Too massive to move or destroy in their tired state, it was a problem left for another time. A quick recap of their party members brought to light that Jalissa, Sartanian and Thurran were all missing, after being told to stay behind in the battle with the wight. In desperate need rest, the party made their way back to the scrying pool to sleep and locate the missing townfolk. While they began to bed down, Sertanian snuck back to see if things were safe and they were overjoyed to find the party again. Jalissa was especially thrilled to find Sahir and happily slept near him for the evening, the first restful night she had since this whole mess started. While the party slept, the remaining goblin troupes began to worry. No guards were seen, Sinruth had not appeared and their minor explorations turned up dead bodies of their comrades. Someone was in their headquarters and they were loosing. Banding together, they pulled into one room and waited to make a stand and formulate a plan to escape, if possible.

Trazelle’s snoring was annoying loud in the echoing pool room, and even Vesis in the restful bedroll found it hard to sleep well. Waking after 8 hours, the party made their way back to find the last of the townsfolk. Thurran wept again at the sight of his dead father’s body in the spider room, and found minor comfort at Setanian’s side. Exploring to the north, the party found the spiral staircase that Sertanian had mentioned and the former quarters of the remaining goblins. Quietly moving up the stairs, they could see the goblins, huddled together in fear, waiting. A quick charge up the stairs, the party engaged the foes and the battle began. The hallway clogged the room, making it hard to break the goblin line. Two goblins near the back of the room ran off down a side hallway, seemingly out of fear while an archer took shots at the party held by the goblin line. Sahir ran forward ,sliding between worlds to get past the goblin soldiers and straight at the archer. Soon, the goblins were overpowered and fell. However, things were not over and Jalissa, Sertanian and Thurran were confronted by the two goblins who looked to have run away. They actually ran to try to catch the group from the rear, and found the townspeople they had kidnapped. Sertanian did his best to fend them off, but one of them managed to stab Jalissa, her cry of pain alerting the group upstairs. Running back down the staircase, they quick ended the goblin threat. Luckily, Jalissa’s wound was minor and she would survive.

View

I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.