Kingmaker. The shadows behind the throne.

Game Master DBH

An odd group gathers together. Their purpose to reclaim the Stolen lands. But what secrets do they carry with them into this dangerous land?

Charter

Party loot

KIngdom tracking sheet

Greenbelt map

Terrain costs and improvements

Tangled web


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Are you sure you want to do that?

Restov. 24th of Calistril.

Though the long hard Brevoy winter has left finally the midday air still holds a chill edge, even in the bright spring sunlight. You step from the town hall, blinking at the midday sun.

You look at your fellow party members, None of you known to each. Thrown together by chance and necessity more than by fortune. You watched as several other groups were granted charters to explore regions different from that area you have been given. Some looked like veteran adventurers, others were more mercenary in appearance.

It still gave you the knowledge that a group would be needed to get that final charter, and so you and the others banded together in a desperate scramble and presented yourselves as one such party. They must have seen something in the group for you have achieved your first goal. A new charter held in your hands.

Around you Restov bustles with life. With the end of winter the trade ships and caravans have arrived. The market is crowded with those wishing to end winters hardships and enjoy a taste of plenty again. The streets are filled with people and a ceaseless barrage of sounds.

Your destination lies south. a small trading post manned by Oleg Leveton and his wife Svetlana. Perhaps now would be a good time to discuss the parties equipment and travelling needs, and also to learn more of the people you will be entrusting your life to in the coming days?


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

Richard stands in studded leather armour with a finely crafted buckler on one forearm. At his hip as an Aldori Dueling Sword but the keep of eye will notice daggers also secreted away upon his person. Over his back he has slung his backpack in a relaxed and confident manner.

When he speaks it is with a slight accent giving away his birth in Mivon but more dulled than the average person from his homeland. His voice is rich and as he speaks his tone is deliberate and with his cadence easy to understand. "I suppose I should introduce myself, I am Richard Harmon of the Noble House in Mivon of the same name. I have studied the Aldori ways for some time so can add this to the education my family imparted upon me."

"I have much of the basic gear needed for our initial operation but I am a little embarrassed to say I'm not the most accomplished rider and during the winter my horse stumbled while out riding and broke it's leg. Up until now I have not had the need to replace it and currently do not have the currency needed for the purchase of such. My apologies if the rest of ye all have a mount and I am inconveniencing the group in any way by my current circumstance." As the group wanders his step holds a certain swagger, one of a man who is ready to roll with the circumstances.


Male Human Arcanist 4 ~ AC 17* (t 12, ff 15*) *-4 if no mage armor | F+2, R+3, W+6 | Init +7, Per +2 | A.R. pts 4/7 | HP 18/28

Niadroub Kliip hated Restov. It wasn't anything like he expected. But since he'd never been in a city before now, he didn't really know what to expect. He just knew it wasn't like the farms and forests of the Riverlands. Come to think of it, he hated those, too. Maybe the Stolen Lands will be better.

"Niadroub Kliip hev a herse. Bought it. Et's real mean.

"Niadroub Kliip hev all the gear et needs, mebbe. Kin't efford mooch else, eenywey."

Niadroub Kliip hefts his own pack to accentuate his point, his wiry arms almost struggling to briefly lift it slightly off his shoulders. As much as he hated the horse, at least the beast was good for carrying things, even if it did try and bite him whenever he put saddle bags on it.


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

Colwyn's first introduction to his new allies is an embarrassingly large yawn.

After being released from his cell yesterday, he was given a bunk in the garrison to rest before visiting the town hall in the morning.
He had spent the night awake, staring at the ceiling, waiting for a vengeful guard to approach with a knife.

One of the guards had visited Colwyn before lights out to offer the former bandit some advice:
"Pardoned doesn't mean forgiven, you trash," he had hissed with ale on his breath.

At first light, Colwyn bolted from the garrison like a spooked hare. He sprinted out to a copse of trees beyond Restov's walls to recover the only one of his caches he was sure his former comrades had not pillaged after turning him in.
He arrived to the town hall panting, out of breath, but just managed to arrive on time.

Now, standing in the daylight with his new allies, Colwyn regrets having packed this "escape kit" so thoroughly before being arrested.
The straps already dig into his shoulders, and he is not looking forward to traveling the long road ahead on foot.
At least he has his armor, perhaps his pride and joy. Unlike the bow and stout blade given to him by the quartermaster, his armor is not of common craftsmanship.
The studded leather coat's fine fit will be one less discomfort as he marches to the Stolen Lands.


Female Aasimar (Angel-Blooded) Fighter (Aldori Swordlord) 4 | AC 17 (t 13, ff 14) | F+5, R+4, W+1 | Init +3, Per +4 | HP 39/39

Cloak pulled around her shoulders and wearing a coat over her usual armour, Xantria looked over the other members of their new group.

"Name's Xantria, and I don't have a horse either. I did bring coffee, though, if anyone else drinks it." The others would learn soon enough that she was most definitely not a morning person.

She braced herself for the expected remarks about her heritage from those who noticed - it hadn't happened as much since she left Mendev, but it was still a hard habit to break.


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

"Colwyn Orlack," he introduces himself, leaning against a wall to rest. Not only does his pack weigh heavily on his shoulders, but his legs still feel flimsy after his morning run to his cache and back to town.

Scanning his eyes over Harmon's dueling sword and noble trappings, Colwyn inches away nervously. Xantria's tattoos and yet more impressive sword leave him no more allayed.
Although Niadroub reminds Colwyn of the folks he's used to consorting with, it's little comfort considering how well that ended.

"Only at introductions and already I'm afraid of my new companions," he thought to himself. "You can trust these folks, Colwyn. Gotta remember that."

"I don't suppose I could convince everyone to pool our coins to purchase a mule and a cart, eh? It would ease our travels and could come in handy down in the Stolen Lands."


Male Human Arcanist 4 ~ AC 17* (t 12, ff 15*) *-4 if no mage armor | F+2, R+3, W+6 | Init +7, Per +2 | A.R. pts 4/7 | HP 18/28

Niadroub Kliip picks something out of his unkempt black beard and flicks it away.

"Kin't use a keert where ther ein't no roads."


Female Aasimar (Angel-Blooded) Fighter (Aldori Swordlord) 4 | AC 17 (t 13, ff 14) | F+5, R+4, W+1 | Init +3, Per +4 | HP 39/39

"Not a bad idea," Xan replied, "assuming we have the spare cash for it - I've got a platinum but I don't remember how much the stables charge."

If Colwyn was paying enough attention, he might've noticed some of Xan's tattoos shift ever-so-slightly. She hadn't intended for the Numerian tattoos to be animated, but it seems they still had a bit of it regardless. Being superimposed over normal tattoos in places also led to a rather interesting effect for those keen enough to notice.


Cleric 4 | HP 27/27 | AC 20 : TAC 13 : FAC 17 : CMD 13 AC 24 : TAC 17 : FAC 17 : CMD 17 | Fort +4 : Ref +4 : Will +7 | Perc. +13 (DV 60') : S.M. +8 : Initiative +3 | Move 20' | Longbow +7, 1d8 | Wand 28

The quiet woman with the longbow looks everyone else over.

She wears an eyepatch over her left eye, and warm furs and woolens colored in greens and browns, beneath which studded leather can be seen. Around her neck there is a medallion made out of scrimshaw in the shape of antlers fashioned into a bow. She leads a mule loaded with supplies.

I thought the church of Erastil was sponsoring this mission? These don't look much like the faithful of Old Deadeye to me. Well... maybe that one. Perhaps the ones who planned this asked the church for volunteers? Well, if it gets me out of Brevoy then I shan't complain.

"I am Sister Elena. It's an honour."

"I do have a mule already. Frankly, if you don't know how to look after a horse, it's probably better if you don't bother with one. And I agree with Niadroub here, that a cart won't be much use if we have to blaze a trail through forest or steep hills."

"But a train of mules can carry just as much, and they don't mind eating grass. When there is grass to be had. There's no shame in walking."

"We may be having a mild spell right now, but bring warm clothes. We still have another month of winter."

For the record guys, horses are useful but are also a target for predators. If you don't plan to invest in things to protect your horse, like combat training and barding, you may be better off not sinking money into them. Mules, on the other hand, are cheap at only 8 gp.


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

"I have only five gold currently at my immediate disposal but would lend it to the cause if needed, that would go a sizable distance towards adding a mule. The journey wont feel half as long walked if we don't have to carry every blanket and pan ourselves." Less than a year back he probably would have made some playful turn of phrase to Xantria or Elena but his heart wasn't in it these days. Perhaps he'd invite Xantria to train with him noting the strangely tattooed woman's equipment but he wouldn't be using it as a pretext to try and have her sitting on his knee in an inn somewhere by dusk. He was foolish and carefree back then, and he missed it.


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

Colwyn rubs at his eyes with his thick knuckles. He sees the shifting of Xantria's tattoos but chalks it up to his imagination left unfettered by sleeplessness.

"While I would be grateful to any sort of beast that would carry this pack for me, seeing as how I have only two crowns to rub together, I guess I'm just gonna have to grin and bear it.

"I may invest in a blanket, though, now that you mention it. Should only cost a couple links. I'll work up a sweat on the road, but it could come in handy when we arrive. Can't say I miss those cold nights spent in the woods.

"Mind if I nip a bit of that coffee, miss?" Colwyn asks Xantria, trying to stifle another yawn.


Female Aasimar (Angel-Blooded) Fighter (Aldori Swordlord) 4 | AC 17 (t 13, ff 14) | F+5, R+4, W+1 | Init +3, Per +4 | HP 39/39

"Sorry, I meant I had a coffee pot and the grounds to brew it with, not that I had any ready to go."

She did nod to Elena's suggestion of a mule. "Well I don't remember the price of mules, but I should be able to afford one. We shouldn't need too many, should we?"


Are you sure you want to do that?

Donkey or Mule 8gp. Carries 600-800lbs.

Now who has any ranks in animal handling? :)


Cleric 4 | HP 27/27 | AC 20 : TAC 13 : FAC 17 : CMD 13 AC 24 : TAC 17 : FAC 17 : CMD 17 | Fort +4 : Ref +4 : Will +7 | Perc. +13 (DV 60') : S.M. +8 : Initiative +3 | Move 20' | Longbow +7, 1d8 | Wand 28

I actually don't - I took Knowledge (geography) and Profession (hunter) as my background skills.

But you can give orders to a trained animal with just a charisma check. I have +1.


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

"If we get one mule and some extra rations, it's been a while since I've done any hunting and I'd rather not rely on that while we make our exploration." Richard seemed content enough to walk knowing he wouldn't be slowing the group down.


Portrait N Female Human Ranger 1 | HP 11/11 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMD: 14 | F 3, R 6, W 1 | Init +4 | Per +5

Switch leans against a wall, scratching at her scalp beneath her strawberry-blonde hair and listening to the conversation. Her mind strays to the coin-purse hanging from her belt—full even after giving her family enough to make it through the next couple of months, and she shakes her head slowly. ”Seems a bit foolish to be buying more animals when we have a couple horses and a mule already.” She looks over the group, then offers a handshake. ”Besides, some people have obligations on their coins beyond what they want. I’m Switch. I’ve got three mouths to feed besides my own, and my coin’ll go to them next time I’m in the city.”

”You can use ‘Lexis for your baggage until we get to the trading post. She’s not a pack mule, but I don’t mind walking if I have to, until we're in the Greenbelt and away from the roads. And one other thing. That way isn't the safest. Trust me on that.”

I have 4 ranks in Handle Animal. Could be useful.


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

"Well, I won't fault you there, Miss Switch. If'n my old man had been a bit more considerate of my mother and me, she wouldn't have been eaten.
"Damn trolls,"
he curses after a pause.

"Anyhow, if folks would be kind enough to offer their animals so we can occasionally take a load off, I think the road would be more bearable for all of us."

Colwyn grimaces when he hears the faint clink of his small iron pot, hanging off his pack, tap against the wall where he rests his back.
Of all the supplies he had stashed away, this one is proving the most onerously needless in the moment.


Male Human Arcanist 4 ~ AC 17* (t 12, ff 15*) *-4 if no mage armor | F+2, R+3, W+6 | Init +7, Per +2 | A.R. pts 4/7 | HP 18/28

Niadroub Kliip agrees. "Do meh nag sem good to take en sem eextra berden."


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

Colwyn pushes off from the wall and adjusts the pack straps on his shoulders, resulting in much clinking and rustling from his gear.

"Well, I'm not such a lay-about that I can't pull my own weight for at least the first stretch of road. I'm ready to sally forth when the rest of you folks are, eh?"


Are you sure you want to do that?

The journey is without incident, this close to Restov the patrols ensure the road is safe. As evening draws closer you see ahead the small village of Nivakta's crossing. The gates on the palisade wall are still open.

Nivakta's crossing has barely 150 people and is populated by trappers, anglers, hunters and the tradesmen who provide the services they use.

The only inn the village has is the Shrike River inn. Not luxurious by any stretch of the imagination. It has tables with benches to sit on. One end of the long room is curtained off and contains cots. The nearest the Rest has for a private room. Outside there is a small well, with attached bucket for those who hold with the strange notion of cleanliness, and a small barn attached to the side of the inn for stabling animals. It's empty at the moment aside from a local youth who blinks at you with disinterest as you pull the wagon up outside.

"3 sillers to watch yer mule er horse overnight. More'n if it bites." He says by rote.

Inside the innkeeper looks nearly as friendly as the stable boy. "A gold a night for a cot." He states. "Gets you a meal as well, but no drinks."

You can smell a mutton stew cooking, which actually smells very tasty, aside from the stew with vegetables and a chunk of bread the other choice is whatever fish or game the locals have bought in that day.


Male Human Arcanist 4 ~ AC 17* (t 12, ff 15*) *-4 if no mage armor | F+2, R+3, W+6 | Init +7, Per +2 | A.R. pts 4/7 | HP 18/28
GM_DBH wrote:
"3 sillers to watch yer mule er horse overnight. More'n if it bites." He says by rote.

"Et oonly bites Niadroub Kliip," Niadroub Kliip mumbles as he hands the reins of his horse over along with the silver. As if to accentuate the point, his horse nips him in the arm, drawing an unintelligible tirade from the skinny man.

The group was delayed in leaving Restov because Niadroub Kliip refused to load the saddle bags onto the horse, insisting the hand at the stable do it, but it took the man a while to understand the arcanist's request. The horse then bit its master numerous times on the road to Nivakta's Crossing until it seemingly grew bored with it.

Inside the inn, Niadroub Kliip pays for a room, and sits down to sulkily eat his stew, wondering what a horse meat stew would taste like.


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

Colwyn slaps the gold coin into the innkeeper's palm.

He wants to argue about price, to point out that this place was barely worth three silver links, and to vent about what amenities one whole gold crown could buy elsewhere.

However, he lets the issue go with only some unintelligible grumbles.

With Miss Switch near at hand, he feels too guilty to be a miser.
He even considers offering his only other coin to cover her lodgings, but thinks better of it, worrying it would be too forward.

Not to mention, Colwyn fears he's already left a bad impression on his new companions and that pinching every copper bit would, in their minds, paint him as a greedy skinflint.


Portrait N Female Human Ranger 1 | HP 11/11 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMD: 14 | F 3, R 6, W 1 | Init +4 | Per +5

Switch, for her part, doesn't look forward to her visit to Nivakta's Crossing at all. She pulls her hood over her head, quietly slips a few silvers to the boy outside for her horse, and pays for a cot wordlessly. Once it's paid for, she heads over, pulls off her armor, and collapses into it, where she tosses and turns, struggling to sleep.

When sleep fails to come quickly, she heads back to the innkeeper, puts a handful of silver on the counter, and looks toward the bottles in the back. "What can I get to drink around here, and how much for a couple of them?"


Cleric 4 | HP 27/27 | AC 20 : TAC 13 : FAC 17 : CMD 13 AC 24 : TAC 17 : FAC 17 : CMD 17 | Fort +4 : Ref +4 : Will +7 | Perc. +13 (DV 60') : S.M. +8 : Initiative +3 | Move 20' | Longbow +7, 1d8 | Wand 28

Elena pays the coin without complaint. "May be the last stay indoors in a while. Might as well enjoy it while we can."

She pats her mule and goes inside.

"That stew smells quite good," she says to the innkeeper. "Let's get some of that, and some bread to clean the bowl with." She looks at the others. "Anyone else?"


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

Richard hands over the gold, he'd stayed in better for less but there was little other choice and as Elena said it might be there last chance for a while.

The prospect of the meal perked him up a bit. "I'll have to give in too or my grumbling stomach will keep me up half the night."

Richard attempted to try discovering some of the local news and rumours. "Ye must get many passing through on the road with news. Heard anything of interest, particularly any coming from the South East?" He would ask the staff as well as the clientele in general.

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (3) + 6 = 9


Female Aasimar (Angel-Blooded) Fighter (Aldori Swordlord) 4 | AC 17 (t 13, ff 14) | F+5, R+4, W+1 | Init +3, Per +4 | HP 39/39

She couldn't argue with Elena's remark so forked over the gold while managing to keep her remark about daylight robbery quiet (and muttered in Celestial for good measure).

"Think I'll have some of that stew as well, if there's enough left," she answered when Elena asked.


Are you sure you want to do that?

Nivakta's crossing is a small insular community, not hostile but strangers are watched carefully here.

While a gold for a cot is a bit pricey the meal that comes with it is actually very good. Whoever the glum innkeeper has doing the cooking is very skillful. The meat is fresh and cooked properly till tender, along with plenty of onion and garlic. The vegetables are all fresh and crisp, even the bread is made that day and is thick enough to sop up the gravy.

Ale is 4cp a tankard, and shares the quality of the food, a thick dark ale, cool and strong enough to give the drinker a little buzz.

As evening comes in the fireplace is feed more logs until it's nearly roaring, and the locals wander in. Conversation is in low voices and the looks your way are wary. Alcohol serves it's purpose as the great befriender though and after a few tankards the locals unwind and even converse with you.

It seems since the guards were called back to Restov things have become more dangerous around the crossing, even with the river as a defense, and the towers watching the bridge over it there have been increasing numbers of bandits trying their luck in the area.

This has affected the inns greatest source of income, the merchants and traders who ply the south Rostland road are choosing other, safer routes rather than passing through Nivakta's crossing. As one local confides in a low voice after several tankards. "Needs a lot more coin coming in here to get old Josef even close to smiling."

When asked about the south there are looks passed among the locals. One shrugs. "Bout what you'd expect. Guards head back to the city and the bandits and other vermin get bolder. I heard from one of the traders that Oleg down at the trading post has been asking the city for guards to be stationed there tis getting so bad."


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

With a bowl of stew on the table before him, the rich aroma wafting upwards makes Colwyn forget - mostly - about parting with an entire crown.

"Not bad. Certainly makes me glad I didn't collapse onto my cot right away."

He holds off on the ale, though, remembering how falling deeply into the tankard one night helped him fall into the authorities' lap.
Sticking to water is not pleasant, but hearing the locals complain about bandits reaffirms his desire to keep sharp.

Although he digs right into the stew and crusty bread, Colwyn waits until all of his companions have taken their seats on the creaking benches before talking.

"While I may have, admittedly, dozed off a bit during that charter meeting with the lord mayor," he says in a low voice, idling pushing a large chunk of carrot in his stew with his wooden spoon, "I certainly took notice of talk regarding the bandit problem. I suppose that will be our top priority once we arrive at the trading post, eh?"


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

"That it will and bandits need weapons to threaten with and horses to make getaways. Once we deal with a few we should have shored up our supplies a bit. Routing them out will be tough. Once we successfully sorted out a few we could be dealing with a counter strike or they may move on to another area that they feel is less of a challenge."


Cleric 4 | HP 27/27 | AC 20 : TAC 13 : FAC 17 : CMD 13 AC 24 : TAC 17 : FAC 17 : CMD 17 | Fort +4 : Ref +4 : Will +7 | Perc. +13 (DV 60') : S.M. +8 : Initiative +3 | Move 20' | Longbow +7, 1d8 | Wand 28

"This ale is quite good," Elena smiles at Josef the innkeeper. "Perhaps I can get some in a jug for the road. I have empty jugs with my mule I think."

GM_DBH wrote:
One shrugs. "Bout what you'd expect. Guards head back to the city and the bandits and other vermin get bolder. I heard from one of the traders that Oleg down at the trading post has been asking the city for guards to be stationed there tis getting so bad."

"Thanks, friend. Here, you look thirsty," she remarks, and she calls for the barkeep to pour a mug of ale for the local man. "Least I could do for useful news." she nods and raises her mug in a toast.

"You said guards are bein' pulled back to Restov. D'you mean from here? Or from Fort Serenko down the way? And what do they need more soldiers in Restov for?"


Female Aasimar (Angel-Blooded) Fighter (Aldori Swordlord) 4 | AC 17 (t 13, ff 14) | F+5, R+4, W+1 | Init +3, Per +4 | HP 39/39

"If they've a leader, taking him out could also calm things down. Tried to do the same back in Restov to a gang leader."


Are you sure you want to do that?

The local nods appreciatively to Elena and takes a long draw on his ale, wiping the foam off his upper lip with the skill of long practice. "Well I'da thought you'd know about it coming from up northways. Ever since the Rogarvia vanished them Surtova have been acting like'n they are in charge now."

He looks around in the reflexive way all political talk brings in Brevoy. "What I hear is that Rostland don't want no damn Issian ruling over them! So if the Surtova start to push Restov wants all it's guards where they can use'em."

He looks a lot less happy now. "Fort Serenko used ta have a squad stationed in it. It's empty now and the patrols on the road are way down. So for sure the bandits can see their chance now." He spits throatily into the fireplace.


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

"Too far from where we will be exploring but it will be better shelter for a night than the roadside at Fort Serenko. Likely it's locked up as best as they can manage however the sturdy walls will shield us from the elements well enough. If we don't come across it at an opportune time for setting down for the night it might still be worth poking around and make sure the bandits haven't gotten ideas towards putting it to their own use."

Richard dips some bread in the stew and eats it before continuing. "If there's any bandits there we could learn a lot but I doubt they've headed there yet. But are there any spots along the road the bandits have been striking more regularly, if we take extra caution at these spots we might send a few Pharasma's way and make the roads safer for your customers."


Cleric 4 | HP 27/27 | AC 20 : TAC 13 : FAC 17 : CMD 13 AC 24 : TAC 17 : FAC 17 : CMD 17 | Fort +4 : Ref +4 : Will +7 | Perc. +13 (DV 60') : S.M. +8 : Initiative +3 | Move 20' | Longbow +7, 1d8 | Wand 28
Xantria Aldori wrote:
"If they've a leader, taking him out could also calm things down. Tried to do the same back in Restov to a gang leader."

Elena thinks about this and nods.

She turns back to the local man.

"Any bandits makin' a name for themselves? Or gangs? And are there bounties up for them?"


Male Human Arcanist 4 ~ AC 17* (t 12, ff 15*) *-4 if no mage armor | F+2, R+3, W+6 | Init +7, Per +2 | A.R. pts 4/7 | HP 18/28

One of the first things Niadroub Kliip learned after he spent some time away from home was that nobody brews a drink like he and his grandfather used to. He doesn't bother with an ale, instead thinking about how, when he finds a place to settle down, he can see about setting up a distillery and making some proper moonshine to wash down his horse meat.

And then the others start talking about the situation to the south, whereby he listens attentively.

"Whet heppen to the Rogarvia? Why es the Issians the boss now?" he asks the local.


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

Knowledge: Local: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (12) + 6 = 18
Slurping up another spoonful of stew - making sure to collect the last bits of carrot, onion, and mutton swimming in the broth - Colwyn mulls the information swimming in his skull.
It’s been some time since he prowled the Greenbelt, and even if some of his knowledge is outdated, surely he’s overheard useful tidbits about the local banditry while imprisoned.

As he plumbs his mind, though, a terrible thought occurs, and suddenly the stew sits uneasily in his gut.
”If these local rubes find out I used to be one of them bandits, they’ll riot,” he frets to himself. “They’ll string me up from a tree, or drown me in that well.”

His eyes dart across the common room. Each farmer lancing a turnip on a fork, each angler cutting into a bit of perch with a dull knife, each trapper nodding his head grimly before spitting into the corner - they all take on a semblance of danger.

”Maybe if I keep to whispers after the place clears out for the night and we all bed down, or maybe I should just keep my mouth shut until we’re back on the road…” Colwyn thinks as he both recollects useful knowledge and ponders how to safely pass it along to his compatriots.


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

Richard leans forward in his seat as he answers the question. "That's the question. One night ten years ago every member of the royal family disappearred and no one knows how or where to. The Regent set himself up to keep things in order til the royal family return... or to be th most ponwerful man in the country depending on who you ask... though those aren't exclusive. Some of course say worse things." He shrugs nonchallantly but out of habit makes a mental note of the man. He was a noble from Mivon his view on the matter was a moot point more or less...

. At least publicly.


Are you sure you want to do that?
Elena Voritzova wrote:


Elena thinks about this and nods.

She turns back to the local man.

"Any bandits makin' a name for themselves? Or gangs? And are there bounties up for them?"

The local man eyes his now empty tankard with a hopeful air then replies to Elena's question. "Aye, some jumped up bastard calling himself the 'Staglord!' Is said to be the latest king vermin. But he's well south of the Shrike. what we get this close to Restov is the independent pests."


Are you sure you want to do that?

It turns out that breakfast is also included in the cost of your cots, simple but filling. The morning meal provided by a quiet, middle aged woman who doesn't speak much, but still seems friendlier than the innkeeper.

A thick porridge, cooked with smoked sausage and bacon mixed in, along with slabs of bread toasted on the fire and served with butter, honey or a berry preserve. Mugs of strong black tea are also provided to accompany the morning meal.

The morning is still and chilly, thought the skies have no clouds in sight and it looks like the day will be very clear. Your mounts have been feed and even groomed, looking eager to be moving again.

The stablehand looks at Niadroub with some confusion, wondering why he was maligning such a gentle horse the previous night?

The woman running the inn has also baked what was left of last night stew into pasties and gives you some to serve for a cold lunch.

She looks you over noting the air of purpose you have and nods. "I'm sorry for my husbands manners." She tells you quietly. "Since the trades dropped off he's grown more and more surly. I hope you can get things more settled again. I wish you luck."

She watches you leave, and you can see more than a few of the villagers are also there to see you cross the Shrike and start south.


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

"I hope when next we pass this way things will be more settled. We aren't the only group sent to weed out these bandits." He gave her and the other villagers a reassuring smile and gestured towards his Aldori Dueling sword. [/b]"Beside they might be able to hold a blade but some of us have studied the old ways. I aim to give them a final lesson about not upsetting talented cooks before they meet Pharasma."[/b]

--------------------------------------------

Once across the Shrike he spoke again. "So the Stag Lord. Its an impressive enough name I'll give him that but he might just earn himself a few arrows from Elena for using Erastil's symbolism."


Cleric 4 | HP 27/27 | AC 20 : TAC 13 : FAC 17 : CMD 13 AC 24 : TAC 17 : FAC 17 : CMD 17 | Fort +4 : Ref +4 : Will +7 | Perc. +13 (DV 60') : S.M. +8 : Initiative +3 | Move 20' | Longbow +7, 1d8 | Wand 28

"Stag lord, eh? It's not right for a bandit to take his name after Erastil's sacred beast. This bandit king sounds like a blasphemer, mocking the gods."

She shakes her head knowingly.

"But gods are not mocked. Old Deadeye will have his due sooner or later."

Can we have a map? If we are crossing the Shrike then this is different from the published module. If so, that's great! More surprises. But I'd like something to get my bearings with.


Are you sure you want to do that?

No need for the map just yet. Nivakta's crossing is built on the Shrike. The bridge you will use is the south exit from the village, it has two towers on the far bank, manned now by nervous locals rather than professional guards. Maps are coming though. :)


Female Aasimar (Angel-Blooded) Fighter (Aldori Swordlord) 4 | AC 17 (t 13, ff 14) | F+5, R+4, W+1 | Init +3, Per +4 | HP 39/39

"Just so long as we don't go relying on any divine aid from the man himself," Xan remarked snidely, "we go counting on the gods for aid and, at best, we'll get nothing done."


Male Human Arcanist 4 ~ AC 17* (t 12, ff 15*) *-4 if no mage armor | F+2, R+3, W+6 | Init +7, Per +2 | A.R. pts 4/7 | HP 18/28
GM_DBH wrote:
The stablehand looks at Niadroub with some confusion, wondering why he was maligning such a gentle horse the previous night?

"Yer yoong, yet. Eeveryoone et betray yer, soomeday. Jes wait."

Niadroub warily tugs his horse into line with the others when they cross the bridge.


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

"That breakfast was the best meal I've had in years, and their morning hospitality was a surprise, to be sure. I still wouldn't want them folks to know my past, but I must admit that I feel all the more obliged to settle these bandits for them."

Nevertheless, in a pocket of his mind, Colwyn grumbles with news of this bandit lord.
Barely concealed under his breath, he can be heard to mutter, "He gets to be the Stag, and I'm stuck as the Toad? At least I'll get to be the justice brought against him."

This last thought twists his mouth into a wry grin, eager to see doom brought upon this Stag Lord.

Did my Knowledge: Local roll tell me anything useful?


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

"Well if all goes well the Toad will outlive the Stag." Looking out at the road before them he sighed "We've got a long road ahead of us, lets start seeing what's around the next bend."


Are you sure you want to do that?

The days travel passes steadily as you move south, finally as evening draws closer you see the looming shape of Fort Serenko atop a rise in the distance.

The shadows are growing longer almost as you watch and the light is getting dim, evening and the following night will be on you soon.

GM Screen:

Perception: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (1) + 1 = 2
Perception: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (8) + 9 = 17

Elena frown as her eye catches something out of place? The fort was supposed to be abandoned when Restov pulled it's guards back. Why can she see 2 men standing guard outside it's gate?

The players with dark or lowlight vision had the advantage in the falling light. The fort is unlit and has no one on the walls. But Elena has detected two armed men outside the gate and clearly watching?


Male Maps: Thornford, Republic of the Kamelands

"Confound this hastened dusk. It's like the very season is against us," Colwyn says in a hissed whisper.

He squints his eyes to pierce the darkness, but to no avail.

"I see the fort, but little else, and I am hardly fond of blindly blundering my way in."


Male Human (Chellish) Richard's Map Vigilante 4, HP: 30/35, AC: 19, FF: 15, Touch: 14, CMD: 18 CMB: +4 Fort: +2, Ref: +8, Will +4, Initiative +4

Able to see the looming outline of the fort but not the guards Richard still draws his rapier in one hand before speaking. "We will see little without lighting a lantern or torch but if we do any hope of approaching unseen will be lost. To use what light remains I suggest we start moving in now. Who is more confident in making a covert approach?"


Cleric 4 | HP 27/27 | AC 20 : TAC 13 : FAC 17 : CMD 13 AC 24 : TAC 17 : FAC 17 : CMD 17 | Fort +4 : Ref +4 : Will +7 | Perc. +13 (DV 60') : S.M. +8 : Initiative +3 | Move 20' | Longbow +7, 1d8 | Wand 28
Colwyn the Toad wrote:
"He gets to be the Stag, and I'm stuck as the Toad? At least I'll get to be the justice brought against him."

"I reckon the 'Lord' is more important than the 'Stag.' If you become a Lord I'm sure you can call yourself the 'Lion Lord' if you like."

---- once at the fort ----

"I can be quiet when I need to, though I don't have cause most of the time. Those of you who make a living sneaking around will be better at it than me."

I have +2 in Stealth thanks to armor. Could be worse.

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