Escape from Fallcrest

North to Nen!
3/22/2013

Heading back to Hammerfest to report on the Duergar. The trip back is uneventful.

There is a commotion in town as we arrive. We are not the center of attention, something has the attention of the dwarves. Rok is chuckling as we approach. We then notice Korvus, laying naked naked in the street with his clothes and weapons stacked and folded neatly beside him. A vagrant attempts to grab Korvus’s clothes and weapons and a spirit griffin grabs him and flings him. The townsfolk and guard flee. We are left standing in the middle of bazaar… which no longer has customers. We have no clue why Korvus is in this situation and answers don’t seem to be forthcoming.

A pail of beer awakens Korvus who puts on some pants so he does not intimidate the rest of us. The watch finally shows up to investigate. They inform us Dulgar’s dad wants to speak with us. He congratulates us on a job well done and sends us off.

Rok has a clue to the location of the Book of Decadence. Some distant clansman may have it or know something about it. We must travel north to Lake Nen or beyond. Dulgar gets us mounts and packs. We head to Nenlast and resupply.

A halfling asks Tobias if he is here to slay Bitterstrike. Through the couse of conversation we learn that Bitterstrike is a great white dragon and is fed by the bad shifters. We are invited to dinner and are put up for the night by some kind townsfolk. We learn that it’s been a long time since the dragon has flown. Much of the rest of the info is speculation handed down from their fathers. The Tigerclaw clan is not allowed in town. Rok’s people protect the town since their failed attack twenty years ago.

Apparently there was a party that tried to slay the dragon, but only one returned. We go to visit Paulus and learn what we can. Paulus tells us rumors about the drow moving and possibly attacking outlying villages, but he has no confirmation. Paulus tells about losing his two sons and whole adventuring party to the dragon. He tells us that in the lair there is more gold than he has ever seen. Tobias’s eyes light with a greedy glint. Paulus becomes somewhat belligerent about his failure, but is able to give us the basic location of the old lair. We stay in town that night and head out the next day.

We head to to village located close to the dragon lair to scout it out. We find a Tigerclaw village and Rok thinks we need to attack it. There are some strange men dancing around a fire, some guards and a shaman who appears and disappears around town.

We commence our attack. Rok attempts to sneak up on the guard in the woods, but muffs the whole endeavor somehow. The rest of the party attacks. Well, except for Korvus who freezes up and mutters something. A long and bloody fight ensues. In the end, the shaman is the only enemy lefts and he surrenders after a mighty magic from Castar. As part of the surrender deal, he tells us to look for the dragon by the boats.

Korvus plays with the staff from the shaman and it seems to summon the dragon. He asks why we are here and what have we done with his feeders. Castar attempts to negotiate for the book, but the dragon smells Castar and leaps forward to attack. Another long and bloody fight ensues. Many of the party members exceed previous combat accomplishments, but again, Tobias delivers the killing blow.

We find a lot of gold, jewelry and gems worth another 2 thousand gold. A level 10 flaming spear. Level 5 gloves of Recovery (adventurers vault 2 p. 96). Level 9 Sureshot gloves AV 137). Level 10 healers shield 117 AV). Level 11 battering Craghammer +3 63 AV).

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January 18, 2013

Strange visions of Korvus on a basalisk… then on a griffin… screaming with pain. The griffin flies through the ceiling of the tomb and Korvus disappears. Tobias weeps.

Castar, Dolgar, Tobias, Mindartus, Rok, Elric and Buck are left standing in the tomb. We are looking at a fountain and a statue of a Mordain holding a glowing orb.

Castar places the cloth that might have belonged to Nar Tell the Damed over the glowing orb. The pool of water rises and morphs into a scene or vision. The first is a spellbook lying open on a table then we see a tower then a group of zombies feeding on the corpses of dwarves. Dulgar recognizes the Tower of Kzar Natr. A haunted tower outside an ancient dwarven settlement north of Hammerfast. Which is the area Thogrid is from. Book of Dead?

The water reshapes into another scene where lizard-like creatures are sacrificing an elven maiden by fire. The next vision is of a reptilian priest navigating a pyramid type structure disarming traps as he moves along. He enters a chamber where he must swim underwater to reach. The tunnel ends, he reaches up and does something, the door opens. He swims up and enters a cavern is an island with a pedestal and a spellbook on the pedestal. Book of Decay?

Rock recognizes some shifters, Tobias is also familiar with them. They travel a frozen road with bound prisoners. They meet some Drow witches who pay the shifters for the prisoners. The vision dissipates and our room is suddenly cold. A new vision appears of the witches leading the captives to a chamber with a white dragon resting on gold. The dragon appears blind. The witch elf cuts the throat of a prisoner, drinks some blood and tosses the prisoner to the dragon. As the vision fades, we see a spellbook amongst the treasure. Book of Decadence?

Another vision forms of clerics and avengers charging across sand on horseback. The desert air and our room are hot. The knights and avengers fight gnolls and humans, but they are losing. Some clerics are running through a maze, one is seperated, he trips and falls and right in front of him is a book. He reaches out to grab the spellbook and a hoof steps on his hand and an axe dismembers him at the forearm.

The water drops back into the pool, the cloth is gone.

We leave the tomb and begin our planning. We enter the temple and get directions to the tower where we think the Book of the Dead is located. The tower is supposedly the final resting place of a dead necromancer.

Dulgar’s father’s master of arms wants to meet with Dulgar. The meeting place is in the hills outside Hammerfast. We see Norin off in the distance waiting with a wagon. As we approach, Buck stops and won’t approach. Something in the cart is bothering Buck. Castar walks up and looks in to find 4 dead orcs, all preserved under the Gentle Repose spell. The Orcs appear to be ones from Stonefang Pass. The Duegar have established multiple outposts south of Hammerfast between Lake Dunmere and Glimmer Peak.

Dulgar’s father wants us to hit an ourpost and bring back intel. The Orc bodies are there to be dropped off at the site we hit. We should also make the place undesireable as a base. Don’t be seen.

Rock, Elric and Mindartus head back to Fallcrest to report to Lord Markelay. Dulgar, Castar and Tobias choose to complete the tasks that are before them.

Castar begins driving the cart, Dulgar in the compartment and Tobias scouting ahead. Twice Tobias spots others. We pull off the road to avoid detection each time. We find a Duegar party on the road, apparently resupplying an outpost. The resupply group leaves and we decide to wait until night to make our approach. Unfortunately, we are spotted as we start making our move. Buck shows himself for a moment. The Duergar talk some and then head back into the building.

Dulgar and Castar move up to the side of the building. Tobias starts dropping suckas with his bow. Dulgar and Castar bust in the building and surprise the dwarves at dice. A few moments of combat and the room is cleared of Duergar. We do find a trap door under a carpet. After a quick rest, we open the door and look down and find a raised stone platform and a room with four hallways leading out, each in a cardinal direction.

Tobias find a trap, sidesteps it and then finds a firetrap in the first hallway he checks. He incidentally sets it off, but escapes major damage. Dulgar steps up to take a look, but triggers the first trap which teleports him in to the fire trap. He escapes out the far end burnt rather well. Tobias makes a big leap down with only minor burns and begins to examine the control panel. Unfortunately the panel explodes damaging the dwarf and halfling.

There is a room at the end of the hall. We enter and find barrels full of mining explosives. We head down another corridor and hear eating and talking inside. As Castar and Tobias argue about a course of action, the door opens. Pandemonium ensues. We quickly win the fight however.

We try another corridor. At the end of the corridor we find a room with a statue of a Lion Knight. We search the room for objects or clues and Dulgar figures out that we are over a tomb. Dulgar and Tobias rob the tomb of a cloak and lift a nice cloak off of the decayed body of a Lion Knight. Castar shakes his head and prays for them.

We proceed to the last corridor and as we listen at the door, we hear dwarves talking behind the door with explosives. We bust in and charge the wizard. Castar beats him down pretty good and Tobias finishes the deed. Meanwhile Dulgar and the wolf take out one of the guards. Duergar reinforcements arrive and we close the door quick as we clean up the room we are in. We open it and try and bust out after we hear them sending one guard for reinforcements. Castar slays a demon, Tobias runs down the Duergar running for reinforcements and Dulgar mops up.

We plant the dead orcs, blow up the tunnel and head out.

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Castar's Epic Quest Begins aka the Tales of Tobias Took
July 27, 2012

We head back to a refugee filled Hammerfast. They are from Axefell which has been overrun by undead. Axefell is just Northeast of Winterhaven. Their king is Thogrid the Absent. There is also a council of clerics meeting in town. We are hailed as heroes as we enter, but everyone has business for us before we get a chance to party. Dulgar meets with his dad, Zulgar the Bold, who is leader of the Council of Lords in Hammerfest. Castar is supposed to meet with Ztasdil the High Priest of Pelor.

Dulgar meets with his father and the Hammerfast council. There is some chat about who is responsible for payment for our heroic deeds. It is finally settled that we can choose some armor to be crafted for us. There may or may be some kind of reward from Lord Farren Markelhay. The council is also sending a diplomatic message with the Dulgar.

Dulgar escorts Castar to his meeting with the priests. Zorbin the Dwarf, Tomwise the Halfling, Silvais is a Paladin to Bahamut and seems to be dominating the meeting. Silvais does the talking, which is somewhat unusual considering where we are. Ztasdil tells Castar that his Calling has come. My task is at hand. Nar Tell the Damed has a tower outside of Axefell. Unfortunately, they believe the Book of Death has been found. Castar needs to try and find the four books and return them to the Temple of Mordin in Hammerfast. They suggest I use a special stone to locate the books, they give me a cloth that might have belonged to Nar Tell. The stone is the Iron Tomb which nobody has entered for years. We are warned not to touch or remove anything from the tomb.

As we enter the Tomb a disembodied voice questions us about our intent. We explain and are allowed to pass. There is some kind of fire trap that Tobias trips as me enter. Mindartus is unable to disarm it fully. As Dulgar takes his turn at punishment in the fire, it goes out and restarts after he passes. Castar asks him to come back and then walks with him through the trap leading the wolf.

We head down the hall, crowded around Dulgar, and enter the first room. We are attacked by a Banshee and some Zombie Hulks. They hit hard and we immediately have to pull out the big guns. We eventually down all the zombies. Then they start getting up again. Castar shouts, “throw them in the pit!” Mindartis beheads a zombie in combat and he disappears. Castar runs over and beheads another that is prone and it poofs. The rest of the zombies start to rise. We finish off the zombies again.

Meanwhile, Rock has been keeping the Banshee busy with some late help from Dulgar. She is eventually slain by a massive strike from the bow of Tobias Took.

As we proceed into the next room, all hell breaks loose. We are attacked by Swordwraiths, Wights and some kind of four-legged, horned creature (basalisk) that Korvus Bronn immediately rushes and leaps upon. Korvus Bronn rides the basalisk into the room where the big fight is going badly and the gaze of the basalisk immobilizes two creatures. Tobias suffers some major injuries and Korvus continues to hang on to the basalisk. In fact, Korvus maneuvers the basilisk into turning a wight to stone. Castar bravely kills the second Swordwraith and the fight drags on…

Korvus guides the basalisk to another kill and we finally finish off the rest of the undead. Eventually, Korvus conquers the basilisk who runs off to another chamber before turning to stone.

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Titan Power!
6/22/12

As the dungeon guys exit Korvus greets us with the head of the Hammerfist Guard. Mudder. According to Mudder, the dwarves can hold back the orcs any longer, we need to bind Stonefang. As we enter the entrance, the Shadow Clan dwarves run up to us and inform us that Stonefang is breaking through. They want to know if we are ready and know how to complete the ritual.

As we enter the chamber, Korvus charges the hand emerging from the pit and strikes at it. The fight starts and our attacks against the Titan are mostly inneffective. Luckily, he only hits Korvus Bronn once. We get lucky on our first try at the binding and have two in the correct circle. Castar observes the dwarf attempt the ritual and when he is unable to complete his portion Castar yells for the dwarf to switch circles with him. Castar reaches the other circle and completes his portion of the binding. Meanwhile Korvus Bronn had knocked the Titan back into the pit and he was just emerging again to some timely attacks from Korvus and Mudder. Mindartis arrives hurriedly buckling his pants. It is apparent the healing in the first aid tent had been effective. No word on the Rock yet. He is probably still on profile. Obviously the adventurers need to set up an SOP on local girls and/or relations with dwarven women.

Meanwhile the fight continues, but Stonefang is showing signs of wear and weakness after the ritual. He is also much more vulnerable and our heroes seem to be doing some significant damage. After much punishment, the Titan is stuffed back into the hole with a parting shot from Tobias Took.

As we exit the chamber heading towards the pass we are jumped by a gaggle of orcs. As a hail of arrows descend on the party the boys get busy. Korvus Bronn yells “let’s hunt some Orc!” as he plunges into melee. The fight goes well for the boys. During the fight, Korvus Bronn has their leader troll at his mercy and gives him an opportunity to run in exchange for a treasure map. However, that doesn’t stop the halfling and wizard from going for the cheap kill. Pelor does not approve. Magma Beast apologizes for killing the troll after he notices the treasure map goes up in flames upon the death of the troll.

At the end of the fight, Korvus Bronn spares the last orc because he tells where the minotaurs and hill giants are… as he runs off, Rock and a band of dwarves show up, kill the fleeing orc. The dwarven sappers blow the bridge, cutting off the orc army.

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No fighter day!
June 1, 2012

Citadel cleared and pass area. We see a tower with a trail of dwarf bodies leading to it. There is currently a battle between orcs and dwarves going on. An important dwarf yells for us to retrieve the Eye of Stonefang from the tower catacombs.

Rock, Mindartis and Korvus join the dwarves in the battle with the orcs.

The tower is guarded by a stout crew of orcs. As we try and storm the entrance, a fierce battle takes place. Much knavery ensues. The end result is that our heroes are still standing and the REMF orcs are all dead.

Meanwhile, the battle noises in the distance have faded somewhat, although they are not over. During the fight, we heard a bit of noise from inside the tower, but nothing else came out. After the fight we grab a little gold off the dead bodies and then Tobias Took sneaks up the entrance and peeks in at 3 obviously magic using orcs.

After much wizardry, fire and poison, the orcs are dead. A hush falls on the room, seeming out of place after the chaos and noisy uproar of only a few moments ago.

An odd mirror with a ghoul, a plate of ribs and some other stuff comes into play. In the end, Tobias Took is poisoned and Elric gains potence (and a level). Dulgar and Castar feel no effects.

We move downstairs to explore. We come to a trapped door and the hobbit goes to work on the the trap and trigger. He fails. Magic spinning blades attack us.

The hobbit and wizard move down another corridor and spring a trap as they try to trip a lever. Luckily the hobbit makes it to the level disabling the trap. They continue down the hall and pick up a gem that looks like a rib.

Tobias Took explores past a trap down the next corridor and is able to turn a dial and light up the pegasus light on the door by the basement entrance. The other branch leads to a frozen lake, 6 sleeping wolves and a chest.

Tobias leaves the room and his chance at becoming a living legend.

We explore the last main branch. We send Tobias down the corridor. He finds some neato boots and we contemplate messing with a hallway that has a lot of obvious traps. We send Tobias to turn the pegasus wheel to blue. Minus the hobbit, we head to the magical door and open it. A weird chest with obvious mini-keys is found. We have one of the keys.

We find a big statue. We put the crystal ball in the hand of the dwarven wizard statue which slides back and gives another mini key. We now only need two.

In another room we find a color coded path to a chest. We send the hobbit and he makes it to the chest, retrieving another mini-key.

We head back to the wolf and ice room. Tobias Took sneaks in, sneaks across the room falling only once, he reaches the chest, pulls out the last mini-key and heads back to the rest of the party. Just before he reaches the party, his legendary status is shattered when he slips and falls, waking the wolves. A mad scramble to escape follows. The party reacts very quickly to rescue the fallen shorty. Tobias Took tries to scramble up the ice shelf, but falls again. The wolves charge, but one falls in the ice.

Dulgar was ready with the rope and with some quick thinking and a heroic pull that brings Tobias Took into the protection of the party leaving his legendary status in the pit with the wolves. The wolves attempt to follow and attack. Kindhearted Castar sadly leaves them as the party indulges in the base bloodlust instincts and slays the poor wolves.

In the end, with one injured wolf left, Tobias Took is able to befriend him. Somehow.

Our wizard figures out that the chest was demon trapped. Castar prays to Pelor for guidance and the trap is miraculously dispelled.

Inside the chest is the Eye of Stonefang. We have now assembled all the pieces.

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The Titan's Pit
2/24/12

We pick up the adventure as the boys are descending into StoneFang Pass which appears to be more of an underground tunnel than a real pass. Mindartis puts an orc down with a backstab at the bottom of the stairs. Korvus Bronn finishes the other two. We have now secured the entrance to the tunnel structure. Elric spots something odd with the rock and Tobias Took figures out how to open it.

Dulgar tells us he believes this is the binding area of the Titan, Stonefang. A couple guys peek ahead and see a commotion in a central pit. Some kind of badass magic goes off and peels a surge off of Mindartis. It would appear something is trying to break out of the pit. Since we have three of the bindings, we know that we need a 4th to complete the binding. Waves of magic continue to strip surges off the boys that are searching the cave.

Mindartis finds a path that leads into a wall, some kind of secret door that the hobbit is able to spot. Mindartis opens the door into a dark hallway with an old, but small, track leading through it. The hallway ends in another secret door that only allows two through at a time. As we start going through, we find orcs are on the other side torturing a dwarf. The room has other dead dwarven bodies also. Tobias takes a long shot down the hall at a couple orcs. The orcs Korvus is fighting yell for help. A door opens, many orcs fire their longbows and Tobias becomes a virtual pincushion falling to the ground with a sad squeal. Castar arrives through the door and, once again, saves Tobias from certain death. Rock blocks the hallway stopping an ever growing number of orcs from overwhelming us. Quickly, the tide turns in our favor. Many orcs go down under the wizard’s spells. Eventually, all the orcs are killed and we heal up.

Dulgar tells us the dead dwarves are from his brother’s personal bodyguard. We search the area and find two cells with prisoners. We also find Dulgar’s dead brother. With that, Dulgar becomes Arden’s Champion and even gets a helmet of office.

The dwarven priest survivors tell us the last binding for the titan is in the citadel. It appears the orcs control the citadel. As we approach, we must cross a bridge, held by a significant force of orcs. As we get to the bridge, a storm of arrows greets us. A big orc riding a boar also charges us. Party members are getting pin-cushioned by the archers. Eventually we get things evened and take the lead by playing defensive. After clearing most of the bridge defenders, we move up to finish the troll shaman, who somehow made it out of the river and finish off the rest of the archers in the tower.

Castar finishes off the last orc with style and the party takes a nice relaxing rest.

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Siege Day
1-27-12 You can do a fondle

Rock and Elric are already at Hammerfest with Dolgar’s father Zulgar the Bold. Hammerfest is a weird town where dogs and cats are living together. Politics and trade and Orcs make for a strange combination within the town.

Our uber sized convoy slowly approaches Hammerfest. Hot air balloons can be seen all over the city. This means that it is Siege Day or the Day After. Ghosts are re-enacting the siege in the town. Weird. Siege Day is also a feast day, however the town has little food. Until we arrive.

As we enter the town we notice some orcs watching us. Two of them run full speed into town. Two more approach, one being the shaman we let go in the tower. He greets us. As he walks off, he mentions that we won’t be alive next time we are in town. He says that in Orc, not realizing one of us understands us.

Orcs are everywhere in the city and they all seem to be watching us as we move deeper into the city. We eventually meet up with Rock and Elric. Dulgar’s personal guard joins us and escorts us to the palace to meet with his father. Zulgar the Bold seems irritated and asks if “this is the only help” that Dulgar could bring back. An argument ensues. Dad is pissed. Apparently Dulgar’s brother is doing something to bind the titan at Stonefang Pass. We are informed that we need to join his brother. We need to get away from the Orc’s prying eyes to avoid ambushes, etc. Dulgar suggests that we take a balloon.

We load up on the hot air balloons. Everything goes fine until the landing, we have a crash due to some bad flying skills. We dust ourselves off and move on. We are about a mile from the pass before Tobias Took notes that someone is following us. Tobias scouts out the pass for us. He notes two hippogryphs controlling the broken bridge over the water with some Orcs on the far side, obviously guarding the area.

After some scouting, Tobias is attacked by one of the Hippogryphs. The same Hippogryph is then jumped on by a charging Korvus Bronn. The Hippogryph flies off with Korvus on his back. Meanwhile the Orcs attack the rest of the gang. A bit of fighting goes on, but the most interesting fight is in the air. Korvus lands a couple nice shots on the Hippogryph, the creature tries to shake him and flies back at the party. Korvus tries one more time and stuns the Hippogryph, taking him to the ground and killing him. Korvus leaps off and does a nice roll, emerging unscathed from the whole affair. Yes. Unhurt. No wounds.

As the party is jumped from behind, Castar unleashes his new, and awesome, spell. The effect surprises everyone, even Castar. Every orc in range is killed. The Orc shaman jumps up next and sends some juju our way. Things go badly with Tobias getting knocked out and Dulgar and our wizard bloody, our cleric and Korvus wounded. Castar calls on the might of Pelor and casts two spells healing the wounded and prone around him.

The heroes make many fine attacks over the course of the fight. The orcs on the near side of the bridge are slain. So is the hippogryph. The Rock and our assassin continue to trim down the orcs on the far side of the bridge as the rest of us move to join them.

Eventually the party takes down the final hero-type orc. It was a long and brutal fight with our heroes expending most of their best powers during the course of the action.

After a short rest, and fearing more orcish ambushes, we descend the pass into what appears to be a tunnel. Immediately upon entrance we encounter firebeetles and stirges. The fight goes well. Korvus opens the door into the next hall and greeted by a roomful of angry orcs. A long fight ensues with many an orc dying.

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Food and Food

We arrive in Fallcrest and the gate guard tells us there has been some trouble (poisoning, etc) and our quarters have been moved to a wing of the palace. Styling. Rock and Elric have run off to Hammerfest on some kind of research errand for the Lady. Tobias Took has secured our wing and is waiting for us with lots of alcoholic drinks.

We head in to report to Lord Farren Markelhay who has a letter to Dulgar from his father. The letter mentions something about an upcoming war and his father is requesting help.

Lord Markelhay speaks to the rest of us after the Dwarf leaves. He tells us about the symbiotic relationship between Hammerfest and Fallcrest. Hammerfest is almost totally reliant on trade food from Fallcrest. The last two trade convoys have been ambushed. We are supposed to spend some time escorting convoys and Dulgar back to Hammerfest. The Lady gives a Sun Globe as a gift. We configure a temporary mount on our Battle Standard.

Dulgar takes the relics (pieces of the titan) from our previous adventure to the Lady’s wizard (Nicoderm) to figure out some of the properties. Between them, they figure out that at least two of the pieces of the titan are in the hands of the orcs.

Our mission: Escort convoy to Thunderspire, guards guard while we clear old hills, go back to Thunderspire, pick up the two additional convoys and escort them and Dulgar to Hammerfest.

About halfway to Thunderspire we come across the remains of an ambushed convoy. Everything is dead or gone. We find a gnoll body also. Most of the food remains.

We get the convoy moving and Tobias scouts ahead to the fort at Thunderspire. He sees no tracks but he does meet Fallcrest guards at Thunderspire. They say that they have not had a single convoy make it to them. A scouting party went out the old hills and didn’t make it back. The rest of us reach the fort with the convoy. Not everything can fit in the fort and it is only guarded by twelve men.

We head back to the ambush spot and attempt to follow the tracks of the gnolls and cows. As we expertly use our “skills” to follow the trail stealthily, and arrive at what appears to be a path that goes underground.

Tobias moves ahead and scouts as we move into an obvious underground lair. Mindartis attempts to sneak ahead but kicks a pebble alerting the gnoll guards. We charge in and engage the gnolls. Some doors on the side open and sand begins to pour into the room at a high rate of speed. We kill the three gnolls in the room and mostly avoid the sand trap. Near the end of the fight, Tobias peers through the portcullis and we see three more gnolls in the next room.

Mindartus figures out how to open the portcullis. We charge in and end up fighting three tough gnolls and four tough hyenas. Two of the hyenas are put down immediately by excellent work by our melee artists and a big hitter spell by Castar. The party performs admirably in the room with many hero-like blows worthy of paintings or tales of renown.

It would appear the gnolls were using some kind of tomb as a lair. The door to the next room appears ancient and of peculiar design and function and our great insight provides us references to the past. As the door opens, a very large gnoll opposes us and two longbowmen off in the corner began to fire. Tobias also senses something in the pool in the middle of the room.

Korvus Bronn puts the big gnoll on the ground and we beat him severely, but then a big nasty pops out of the well-like thing and attacks Tobias Took who puts up a valiant fight before being snatched by tentacles. Will he survive? Or will he be a tasty hobbit-sized snack?

The hobbit frees himself and then is immediately grabbed again. The party gangs up on the foul creature, but he is not going down easy. Dulgar engages the archers while we try to free Tobias Took. Tobias once again frees himself as his friends beat on the Grell. Eventually the Grell has had enough and flees. Korvus jumps down the well. Yes, down the well.

Eventually, we all end up down the well. We disarm a blade trap of some sort and Tobias does some scouting. He sees an open room down one hall and some kind of skeletal bowmen. As we move down the hallway, three ghoul like creatures erupt out of the coffins. Moments later, a mummy joins the fight. Some intense fighting follows with the members using the greatest skills. Displays of timing and finesse begin to take their toll on the undead. The fight drags on though, draining the powers of the heroes. Eventually, the mummy dies leaving one archer and one ghoul to oppose a weakened group of adventurers. We slowly and painfully finish of the last two deadites.

Then we sack the tomb.

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And then there were four

Now with the Hobgoblin dead, we begin to plan our next move. We find a scroll sitting on a table written in what appears to be Black Speech… aka orcish.

“Chieftan Grumbash,

Are nothing to do with the artifact. Keep Hidden do not touch. Party sent to get. Messenger come quicker. Two days behind is Shang to get bring to me. Hands off, kill any dwarfs around. No one get to Harkenwold ti I get hands on it."

Elric thinks Lord Markley needs to know what is going on immediately because of the artifacts and the apparent Orc invasion. Rock and Tobias head back to Fallcrest with the news and scroll.

The remaining four of us head up the stairs to investigate the rest of the tower. As we ascend to the second floor, we note arrowheads peaking out of a tapestry and a glowing red set of eyes near a statue and pile of bones. Arrows skip off the wall near our head and the party leaps into combat. Korvus Bronn attempts to cross the chamber and the center of the floor collapses. Only an athletic leap back saves him from going to the bottom floor. He engages the two archers behind the tapestry. Mindartis uses a racial ability called fey step to basically teleport up to the other two archers on the raised platform.

Skeletons pop up as Castar moves to join Korvus Bronn. Tonights healing word is bitch. Anyway… the fight continues and shifts up the stairs to the next floor. The party is slightly spread out because the healer and dwarf are slowed by the skeletons.

A circle of ruins, bedding and broken walls and a magic circle greet Korvus on the top floor. Oh, also a bugbear, the escaped goblin shaman and some guy in a lot of armor. Castar slays the final skeleton and moves to join the men on the top floor. The dwarf runs, but doesn’t get much further. Korvus moves to attack the bugbear and narrowly avoids a floor trap. His attack is powerful, knocking the bugbear down and then hitting him again when he gets up. However, the bugbear delivers a shot to Korvus, bloodying him in one blow. Mindartus joins Korvus and puts the hurt on the bugbear, but doesn’t kill him. Korvus finishes the bugbear and shifts over to attack the goblin underboss who is attacking the dwarf, Dulgar. Mindartus attacks the goblin mage and is attacked by two wolves that pop out of the bedding in the corner. Both wolves deliver critical blows injuring him severely. The party fights fiercely dropping the spellcaster quickly.

The fight goes about another minute, but the party keeps the advantage and ends the encounter decisively. Gems worth about 300 gp are found and a nice set of blades are found which we give to Korvus. We rest the night and head out the next day. Following the road east, we go to the Orc fortress, near the village of Harkenwold. The fortress appears to be underground and the trail we followed lead clearly to it.

As we head down the stairs, a large room opens up before us. Three fire beetles, two orcs and a dead goblin are in the room. Korvus and Castar take out a fire beetle, then the fire beetles breathe on the party. Two orcs also jump Castar, combined with the damage from the fire beetle, he goes down. Dulgar runs up and heals Castar in a timely fashion. Things are touch and go for a while, but our studliness sees us through. We find a dwarf near deaths door, he tells information regarding the titan. He says they only wanted the titan to destroy the orcs, then they were going to bind him again. He says we can bind him by taking the 4 parts to the magic circles and saying “Tarzak Stongmak” (This is old dwarfish for I bind you from the days when the dwarfs were the slaves of giants.

We approach a door leading further into the fortress/dungeon. We hear a lot of activity on the other side; the rattle of plates, laughing, talking, etc. A quick peek in the room reveals a large group of orcs are having a banquet and party. We Leroy Jenkins into the room and lay waste to the enemy. The surviving mage bargains for his life, gives us a nice hammer, tells us where the hidden stuff is and tells us about the chieftan, who he hates.

After prepping for the fight, Castar pulls the lever that opens the door and the fight begins. There is a chieftan, two orc berserkers and a wolf. The berzerkers are quickly dispatched, but the chieftan is a beast and takes much longer. After a super long fight, the chieftan finally dies. We search the room and find 400 gold. As we exit, we hear a dragon scream and see that Harkenwood is on fire. We rescue 20 villagers from their burning huts. There was much scorched skin and clothing, but we succeeded.

The Baron of the town, Stockmar, thanks us. Then notices the dwarf and gets angry with him about the presence of attacks when the dwarfs show up. The Baron tells us that at the winter and summer soltice he has to give the dragon 20 head of cattle. We check the dwarf warehouse in the city and notice a hatch where we find another part of the artifact.

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Dungeon
10/28/11

We free some dwarven mining prisoners after we clear the main hall. Unfortunately, one is already dead. He had the same exact appearance as the doppleganger.

The miners were brought here to do some repairs, then Targen Stoneheart arrived with an artifact and the whole operation went to hell with bandit attacks, etc.

With some clues about what lays ahead of us thanks to the miners, the party starts to head deeper into the dungeon minus our horseholding friends.

After taking out a couple archers, we make our way through the dungeon, past more traps and into a room with a cauldron and colored goblin skulls piled on the floor next to it. It appears a blue skull makes big dead things appear out of the cauldron. Corvus, the skull dropper, drops a red skull in as he engages the big dead things in battle. Nothing happens.

During the course of the fight, it seems the main objective has switched from conquering the undead monsters to putting as many colored skulls into the cauldron as possible. Elric is the winner when he uses a spell to lift all the skulls and throw them into the cauldron at once. Doors are flung open, more monsters appear in the next room. Many an “oh shit” is heard before combat ensues.

During the course of the fight Korvus enters berzerker mode and goes for the necromancer. The big monsters are slowly whittled down as the party shifts down towards the main chamber, killing along the way.

We finally defeat the necromancer after a little game of invisibility peek-a-boo. Castar performs the ritual and opens the tomb. Inside the tomb we see what appears to be a dwarven artifact in the shape of a beating heart. Dulgar says it is very important to the Hammerfest clan and he will take it back to them.

We take the King’s Road to Harkenwold. We are stopped by an elf named Slynias and warned about goblins waylaying people on the road. There is also an Orc fortress of some type near the village of Harkenwold. The tower guards the road. Dulgar warns us about some dwarf cultists from the Glintshield clan called the Shadowed Chain. They stole four artifacts that were binding an earth titan, one of which we have recovered.

Elf offers to guide us in to the tower. After arriving at the tower, we listen at the door. Lots of talking, laughing and gambling going on…all in goblinspeak! Hobbit tries to unlock door, but the goblins hear and are ready for us as we bust in. Approximately 15 seconds later there are about 15ish dead goblins with only a hobgoblin leader left alive.

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