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Mind Flayer

JamZilla's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 2,247 posts (4,749 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 11 aliases.


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Davos knowledge check :
The Shudderwood is one of the largest forests in northern Avistan, with half of its area in Ustalav and the other half extending as far north as the Worldwound itself.
The Shudderwood in Ustalav is almost entirely within the county of Lozeri covering most of that county to the point that, for many, the Shudderwood and Lozeri are synonymous. There is a small part of the wood in eastern Vieland. Many rivers flow through the wood including: the Buestral River, the Calscroix River, the Mothburn, the Moutray River, and the Troll's Tail. The Dippelmere Swamp lies in the Vieland portion of the wood.

The wood itself is said to be one of the wildest and untamed places in Avistan and is infamous for both the packs of wolves that roam the forest and the werewolves that are said to control them. You know that whilst there are dozens of packs within the wood, they are all derived from, or pay homage to, one of five powerful tribes; The Demon Wolves, the Silverhides, the Broken Ones, the Princes Wolves and the Primals. The werewolf mentioned that Mathus Mordrinacht was the leader of the Silverhides and called him a betrayer.


Below is a spoiler containing the portraits and information you have found out about the residents of Ascanor Lodge. As you find out more I will add to it and continue to update and I would highly recommend checking back through this information as I post it periodically to keep up with who is who.

Duristan Silvio Ariesir:

Duristan Silvio Ariesir
A young thrill-seeking aristocrat hailing from one of Ardeal’s wealthiest families, Duristan has come to Lozeri to make a name for himself as a werewolf slayer. He’s already had a few successful hunts and to date has slain three of the beasts.

As a result of his success, he’s grown dangerously overconfident. Still, he becomes somewhat star-struck in the presence of real adventurers, and eagerly attempts to discuss his hunting tales with them.

Duristan is somewhat contemptuous of most of the lodge’s other guests. While he considers himself a hunter, he views the others as pampered politicos who use Ascanor Lodge to escape from their nagging spouses. Duristan rarely denies himself the opportunity to pique the ire of his fellow guests, whether by wearing his bloody armor around the lodge or by f lirting with the lodge’s “low-born” staff members and even inviting them to participate in “upper class” social events.

Delgro Kroitzcer:

Delgros Kroitzer
Delgros Kroitzcer serves as Ascanor’s huntsmaster and leads (or at least accompanies) the majority of hunts for the lodge’s guests.

Delgros is in his early thirties, and he possesses a fine physique. Still, his appearance seems to complement his gruff demeanor.

Belik of Courtaud:

Belik of Courtaud
Tidy, well dressed, and officious, Belik works as Ascanor’s porter.


Davos - if I recall, the party's original knowledge local check on the Shudderwood was fairly low. So whilst you knew there were werewolves present in the wood, you didn't know enough to be able to make supplementary checks, such as on the name of Mathus Mordinacht

The party retreat from the clearing, the sound of wolf howls still ringing in their ears.

I had no idea the tribes were this riled up. says Duristan, looking somewhat shaken. It looks like I'm going to have to change my tactics... he says to himself.

You all pack up your gear and head back toward the Lodge. Duristan and Delgros seem deep in conversation at times and at others, they ride in silent fury.

Once at the gates to the Lodge, Delgros and the surviving hirelings take the horses toward the rear of the Lodge whilst the rest of you and Duristan walk toward the gate.

For everyone it has been a long day and now that the adrenaline from the confrontation with the wolves dying down, you find yourselves exhausted. The last thing you need is another argument with the halfing porter, Belik.

Unfortunately, as you approach, you see him hurry toward the gate with something in his hands.

The porter, still immaculately dressed in his small blue suit, also now wears an apologetic look on his face.

Please accept my most sincere apologies for my inappropriate behaviour earlier. I was not informed of your coming and acted hastily on behalf of the lodge warden. I can assure you that you will suffer no further ill treatment during your stay at Ascanor Lodge.

He carries a wooden tray that holds a silver pot and several ceramic mugs. He offers you hot coffee and then continues;

If it is convenient for you, my master requests your company at this time for a brief introduction and to offer his apologies as well.

You can tell that it is obviously causing Duristan untold delight to see Belik squirm before you.


This werewolf doesn't look in a talkative mood and his patience is running thin


The howls seem to be everywhere and at least a dozen pairs of eyes have appeared all around you.

NEEDLESS!? THE WOLF HAS NO SYMPATHY FOR THE SHEEP WHEN IT BLEATS FOR ITS LIFE! This is our territory and any who enter here, our prey.

Long lines of blood and drool fall from the wolf's snarling lips at it stares down Jon. Even in his demonic for it shows no fear.

I think we are at the disadvantage here, sirs. Duristan whispers.

You're f#cking right we are! Delgros curses. I'm not going end up as meat picked from some wolf's teeth. he begins slowly backing toward the horses.

It's obvious you are clearly outnumbered.


The wolf growls, a deep, primal sound. You can see the fur along it's neck and shoulders begin to stand on end - it's hackles rising with every word that Sebastian utters.

RRRRRrrrrraaaaghhhhhh! Lies! What fool would hunt the tribes of the Shudderwood?

The bulky wolf rears his head to the skies and releases a long, braying howl. Within moments several more pairs of yellow eyes appear in the dense undergrowth and another howl answers the first. This is echoed by a third howl - close by. And another. And another. And suddenly the still of the night is shattered by the sound of dozens of individual howls ringing out.

You have to strain to hear the werewolf's next words.

As he points a bloody claw at Sebastian's chest he growls:

Your false explanations are meaningless. Go tell whoever sent you to stay out of wolf affairs! Let him know that Mathus Mordinacht and the Silverhide pack do not sit well with the other tribes of this wood. There shall be much blood spilled between our kin before a Silverhide packlord sits upon Highthrone.

Mathus the betrayer shall never claim the title, and should you and yours continue to support him, the wrath of the wolf packs shall fall upon you all! Now leave our territory and run back to your cozy wooden den, or share the fate of these poor little sheep!

He squeezes the throat of the dead man dangling in his claws, sending another gout of blood spurting out of his multiple, grievous wounds.


Sebastian creeps forward, his gentle steps barely disturbing the delicate foliage beneath his feet.

The light is dim now, the last beams of sunlight barely penetrating the heavy forest canopy but for his outsider eyes, it proves no obstacle.

He finds the first trap, a wickedly barbed affair reminiscent of a bear trap except with longer, silvered teeth.

Just beyond, he sees the distinctive shape of a body lying in the undergrowth, drenched in blood. His eyes follow a blood trail, the scarlet red seeming almost black to his nightvision until the trail ends at another body. This one held in the clutches of a savage-lloking heavily muscle lupine humanoid.

The beast stands on two feet like a man but it's entire body is covered in thick, coarse fur and it's head is that of a massive wolf. One with razor sharp teeth and eyes and reflect the dying light like mirrors. It wears iron bracers on it's thick forearms and a long wickedly-shaped greatsword across it's back in a sling.

The werewolf drops the body of the hireling and sniffs the air once, twice and then glares directly at Sebastian.

At that moment the rest of the party catch up and lay eyes on the creature.

A low growl, emanates from deep in it's throat and through gritted, pointed teeth it addresses them;

Stop! it shouts, almost like a bark. Why have you entered Vollensag territory? it demands.


Delgros and Duristan draw their weapons and begin heading toward the tree line


Hmmm? You know, you're right. Delgros, where are the men, have you seen them? Duristan calls.

The woodsman looks up from his tent and frowns before shaking his head.

I think we'd better check on them. he says grimly.


Duristan and the party share stories until the bottle of brandy is nearly dry. As the last remnants of sunlight dapple through the tall trees the sky is turned a beautiful blood red.

Perception DC 15:
As you look around you realise that only one pair of hireling And Delgros are putting the finishing touches to the camp. The others, those who were setting the traps, haven't been seen for a while.


Duristan nods seriously at Morbar's words. You get the feeling that if he had a quill and ink with him, he would be taking notes.


Duristan seems almost bashful at Markus' question.

Oh I came here from Ardeal. Father has done quite well in the shipping trade there but sails and lists and tar and lists were never for me. I'd rather make my name as a hunter.

Knowledge Nobility DC 12:
Unlike some other nobles you have met, Duristan is being falsely modest. Ariesir is the name of one of the richest families in Ardeal, with a huge trade and export industry behind them

I always enjoyed hunting and sports. But when you have a thirty beaters flushing out the game just for you to take the final shot, the novelty soon wore off. So I decided to throw myself in the deep end and I came here to the very edge of civilisation to hunt the most fearsome prey I could think of. Werewolves! he grins broadly.

Father was easily able to get me an invite to the Lodge thankfully. At least that was one good thing. But the other occupants are such tiresome bores. Nothing but pampered politicos who play at being one with nature or pretending to hunt. In truth, seeing the reaction you got from that little urchin Belik and some of the others, I would have happily hosted you even had you decided not to accompany me - just to get up their noses!

I've had several successful hunts so far in the woods - three in fact. But with the tribes of the Shudderwood all here, that's too great an opportunity to miss and I'm determined to obtain a pelt from all of them.


Duristan hangs on firstly Jon and then Cara's every word, a small boyish grin on his face.

When the tale is done, he leans back and gives you all a round of applause.

Bravo! Bravo! What amazing adventures you have had! Far more impressive than anything I have accomplished. These days my only real pleasure in hunting and annoying those pampered ingrates at the Lodge. I'd like to see some of them in a haunted prison let me tell you!

Wound-weaver eh? he says, turning to Jon. A fearsome name! And well-earned I'll warrant. Perhaps I should name my own blade. Something like.... oh I don't know.... Wolfsbane! he cries delightedly. Oh no, that's a plant. That won't do. Perhaps as my hunts continue I can think of something better.

He swallows another shot of brandy and passes the bottle back to Morbar as it appears only he and Markus are joining him in the tipple.

And Dawnbreaker. Another fascinating tale. As experienced adventurers you've faced far more dangers than I. Perhaps you could give me some advice or help me learn from your experience?


YoU CaNnOt KiLl WhAt DoEs NoT LiVe...!

Jon recalls the Splattermans final words all those months ago, as if they were yesterday. And weren't those other words he has been hearing so different and yet so similar?

You are damned to Hell Jon... But there is another way...


Oh there are well over a dozen distinct wolf packs in the woods. No one knows how many individuals but they must number in the hundreds. Duristan says, matter of factly.

You chaps! he calls to the hireling. Be good fellows and bait the perimeter won't you?

The men set about following his instructions, pulling hunks of raw meat and large, deadly looking traps from the crates.

As they do so, Duristan himself opens a smaller box and withdraws a single bottle.

I shall tell you all about my meagre exploits later but please, prey tell me how you came by the name the Heroes of Ravengro and spare not a detail!

The bottle is a particularly expensive Andorian brandy that he uncorks with a satisfying pop.

May I offer you a drink? he asks, already pouring. And prey Mr Dwinhak, that hammer of yours. Why I've never seen the like! You put it to use like a brutal artist, wherever did you learn the skill? And I must admire your blade, Mr Moulton. It looks as light and deft as my own rapier and yet cuts like a cleaver! All of you, please I'd be honoured to hear your stories!

The star struck young hunter eagerly awaits your response.


You hear that, Delgros! Duristan shouts triumphantly. Mr Valon just confirmed it - "something big." Just like a werewolf! He looks off into the dense forest with a half smile on his face. I knew it. I knew the tribes were all here. Just think, I could hunt all of them and be the first to collect a pelt from each one!

He turns back to the group his excitement almost at fever pitch.

That settles it, we'll set up camp here. We'll set a perimeter and wait to see if they return to their kill site. Besides, what better way to trade stories than by moon and fire light, haha!

He then sets about ordering his hirelings to set up camp for the evening.


Just lost my post. Great

Combat Over

Through a combination of sword thrusts, crushing hammer blows and arrows the final boars are felled.

Delgros and the hirelings have gathered the horses some disatance away and the woodsman approaches;

You're damned lucky, Duristan. Those boars could have skewered you. There could well be a pile of guts where you're standing now.

Nonsense. the nobleman replies, checking his wound and finding it nothing but a scratch. What challenge could a trio of smelly pigs provide for the Heroes of Ravengro, seriously man?

He moves to Cara and says quite seriously;

My thanks for your aid good sirs and madame, I trust you weren't injured badly Miss Caradwen?

Delgros moves to the carcass and looks down at the bloody mess.

No telling what attacked that. Not now the boars have had a go at it.

Heal check DC 22:
Despite Delgros' negativity, the trained eye can differentiate between the tooth and tusk marks of the boars and the bites and lacerations of some other creature. Though what that other creature was is impossible to determine.


As the party wades in, Duristan drops his bow and pulls the rapier from his belt. It gleams in the sun and you notice that the slender blade is made from pure silver.

Duristan, boar 2, Rapier, piranha strike: 1d20 + 11 - 2 ⇒ (17) + 11 - 2 = 26
Damage: 1d6 + 3 + 1 + 4 ⇒ (2) + 3 + 1 + 4 = 10
Duristan, boar 2, Rapier, piranha strike: 1d20 + 6 - 2 ⇒ (12) + 6 - 2 = 16
Damage: 1d6 + 3 + 1 + 4 ⇒ (3) + 3 + 1 + 4 = 11

His first thrust pierces the enraged boar's cheek, already slashed and bloody from Jon's assault. It roars loudly and as it opens it's mouth revealing filthy yellow teeth, Duristan lowers onto his haunches and launches forward into a perfect fleche, a thrust through the roof of the creature's mouth and into it's brain, at which point it's momentum sends it past the hunter to slump on the ground.

Round 4 - Enemy

Boar 1, Gore, Duristan: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (2) + 8 = 10 Miss
Damage: 2d6 + 9 ⇒ (4, 4) + 9 = 17

The first boar once again tries to rip out Duristan's guts but the nobleman proves too nimble for the lumbering beast and gives it a disdainful smack on the rump as it charges past him.

Boar 3, Sebastian, gore: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (3) + 8 = 11 Miss
Damage: 2d6 + 9 ⇒ (5, 5) + 9 = 19

Sebastian is similarly light on his feet and easily side steps the enraged beast.

Round 4 - Heroes


Cara also dismounts and readies her bow, knowing that should this turn into a fight, she will have little chance of controlling a panicked horse.

The boars, wild with blood lust, charge!

Round 2 - Enemy

Boar 1, Duristan, charge: 1d20 + 8 + 2 ⇒ (5) + 8 + 2 = 15 Miss
Damage: 2d6 + 9 ⇒ (5, 6) + 9 = 20
Boar 2, Duristan, charge: 1d20 + 8 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 8 + 2 = 20 Hit
Damage: 2d6 + 9 ⇒ (1, 5) + 9 = 15
Boar 3, Cara, Gore: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (15) + 8 = 23 Hit
Damage: 2d6 + 9 ⇒ (2, 2) + 9 = 13

The first boar charges Duristan, it's razor sharp tusks aiming for his soft belly but he dodges to the side, avoiding it entirely. The second however gores him across the ribs, tearing through his armor. For a soft-skinned noble, he takes the blow well and fires his bow like a trained soldier.

The thirdd rushes into the midst of the party and buries it's tusk into Cara's upper thigh.

Round 3 - Heroes


Cara and Morbar to act


Standard action to cast Bull strength, move to dismount and move to draw weapon so you'll have to draw weapon next round Jon


Mmmmhmmmm... Duristan says distractedly, bending down to examine an area of flattened grass and broken shrubbery.

The trail leads this way. Jon and Delgros agree.

Duristan pushes back the bushes and follows in.

Knowledge nature DC 13:
The tracks that Jon and Delgros identify are not consistent with normal lycanthrope hybrid prints, seeming more like dire wolf tracks, though with strange elongated claws.

The bushes part into a second clearing, this one occupied by a trio of hugely fat snuffling boars that dig hungrily into the carcass of the great stag Duristan has been looking for.

They look up angrily with blood covering their tusks and snouts, beady eyes fixed on the interlopers.

Morbar: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 2 = 6
Davos: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (12) + 3 = 15
Markus: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (4) + 1 = 5
Jon: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (1) + 2 = 3
Sebastian: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (3) + 2 = 5
Cara: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (2) + 4 = 6
Duristan: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (19) + 7 = 26

Average is 10

Boar 1: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (12) + 4 = 16
Boar 2: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (4) + 4 = 8
Boar 3: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (19) + 4 = 23

Average is 15

Round 1 - Enemy

The boars snuffle and tramp their feet. One takes several steps toward the party and bares a set of blood-stained teeth.

Round 1 - Heroes

Duristan sees the carcass of the stag and gives an angry yell;

Away, filthy pigs!

He then quickly looses two arrows at the nearest boar.

Duristan, arrow 1: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (7) + 11 = 18 Hit
Damage: 1d8 + 4 + 1 ⇒ (2) + 4 + 1 = 7
Duristan, arrow 2: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (19) + 6 = 25 Hit
Damage: 1d8 + 4 + 1 ⇒ (2) + 4 + 1 = 7


Crime? Whilst it's true that the werewolf tribes have attacked and killed travellers in these woods, either devouring them or turning them into their kind, I must confess it is the sport for which I hunt them rather than any sense of justice. Imagine a creature with the strength and savagery of a dire wolf but the cunning and intelligence of man! A truly worthy adversary. he replies.

It is a shame you do not share my passion but I would be glad to host you at the Lodge nonetheless. But for now, I want to find this stag!

Jon and Delgros set about examining the scene. Each points to tracks and signs written in the broken foliage and Jon and cannot help but respect eachothers ability to read the ground. However, with the amount of blood present, a fairly obvious trail leads into the undergrowth some distance ahead.

Duristan excitedly heads in that direction, bow in hand and arrow nocked.


The trail leads to a small clearing, where the trampled ground and snapped brush shows signs of a great struggle. The soil is soaked with blood, and more has splashed upon the tree trunks and leaves. Despite the telltale evidence, Delgros' jaw drops and his eyes dart wildly with shock at the situation. It's gone! he cries.


Duristan lights up at talk of the slain man.

My trap! Did it work, were there other werewolves around it? Ingenious, I thought and it'll show those other beasts that there is a master hunter on their trail1 Haha!

Reasoned with? Whatever for, sir? These are creatures that stalk the night and feast of the flesh of any poor soul that wanders into their clutches,


Man on the way? Duristan says, excitedly. Have the wolves attacked an actual traveller?

The group, now joined by Duristan and Delgros as well as half a dozen rag-tag hirelings, follow a worn trail through the dense trees.


The werewolf tribes in this region are savage and rampant. They are Beasts of the highest order but they are a most excellent quarry!

A party from the Lodge were out hunting a magnificent stag yesterday afternoon and they came upon it flayed and torn. Delgros is going to lead us to the kill site to see if we can track them!

Although young, perhaps in his mid twenties, Duristan has thinning brown hair and a plain face. He wears a large wolfskin cloak and wears an elegant rapier at his belt.


Of course! he says giddily. You shall be my guests. I will happily host you at the Lodge.

The woodsman just rolls his eyes but doesn't say anything as he lights some kind of foul-smelling tobacco in a horn pipe.

Oh don't mind him. Duristan says. That's Delgros. A fantastic tracker but his conversational skills leave something to be desired.

assuming you agree to go with them...?

So the 'Heroes of Ravengro?' I don't believe I know it. What did you do to earn such a noble title? he asks eagerly as he pulls his wolf-skin cloak tighter about him and urges his horse into an easy trot back toward the forest.


My name is Duristan Silvio Ariseir. And my dwarven friend we shall be hunting tge deadliest game imaginable - the noble and savage werewolf! he says with a flourish.

Then, perhaps noticing the exquisite blade at Jons belt or the nicks and dents in Morbars armor, he becomes somewhat flustered.

Wait you're not... Gods you are aren't you? Adventurers, real adventurers! Oh but you must tell me your tales! Of dungeons delved and dragons slain! Say you'll join my hunt, I'd be most honoured!

The noblemans pomposity melts away and oddly he seems somewhat star struck in your presence.


The halfling stares at Morbar with the tiniest hint of a smirk, all while Jon expounds on the lie.

When he has finished, the porter responds to Morbar;

My good sir. You may have gone through life being brash and brazen, smelling of cheap ale and sweat. And that may have brought you happiness and pleasure and success. And yet for all that, all those moments of discourtesy and violence, have brought you to this very gate at this very spot. Before this, as you say, 'piss ant.'

He cocks his head ever so slightly to one side.

But what here has it brought you? Save for rebuttal and inadmission. Your character and demeanour speak more strongly than the words carried on your foul breath, sir, and you are not the sort welcome at Ascanor Lodge.

Now. Good morning.

He turns on his heel and stiffly walks back toward the Lodge.

Just as he does so, a rough-and-tumble woodsman heads for the gate, followed by a young noble dressed in finely tailored, studded hunting leathers.

Despite the commotion, the two men push through the crowd, oblivious to anyone else's concerns. Several scruffy-looking hirelings follow behind them leading a pair of horses and carrying wooden crates bearing heraldic symbols.

As they reach the gate you begin to overhear parts of their conversation. The nobleman appears to be speaking very quickly and excitedly while the woodsman has a face like thunder:

....but were there any howls or footprints? Did you try to track them? Tell me you at least took measurements of claw or bite marks on the body...? Perhaps if we had the hounds we c-

For the last time, Duristan. the woodsman replies through his teeth. I'll take you there but I ain't bringing my dogs!

The guards open the gate and they pass quickly through, followed by their retinue. The nobleman looks at you all, probably noticing you for the first time;

You there. he calls, somewhat pompously. You look capable. Fall in with me, quickly now. I need more able sword-arms for the hunt!


You are correct in some of what you say, sir. Count Caromarc is no longer the ruler of Vieland, having abdicated his position before he was, shall we say, encouraged to do so by the populace. His name doesn't carry the weight it once did I am afraid. I cannot admit you.

By now, a small group of other guests have gathered in the courtyard. Some seem curious, while others wear haughty sneers, but all whisper to one another, as if anxious to see the outcome of the disagreement.


I've played since 1e and how I've played the game has evolved as much as the game itself. Even five years ago I would have found it unlikely that I'd be playing in a forum-only game, now I find pbp to be a brilliant medium.

Similarly, I went from full paper and books in an enormous plastic storage box to designing custom character sheets in excel and printing them off to just running Hero Lab on my laptop. All the guys at the table now use a laptop or ipad and I agree that the biggest danger is making sure everyone is engaged in the game and not checking Facebook every five minutes.

But once we finish ROTRL in about a month, it's back to my turn as table GM and I'm really excited to try the next level again with this.

I honestly don't know how it will work out but I'm more than willing to give it a shot!


Good morning, sir. one of the guards says, taking the invitation from Markus. He looks it over carefully and passes it to his fellow guard for a further inspection.

The names here refer to yourself and your companions, sir? the question is rhetorical and seems to be for no other reason than to stall.

This tactic goes on for close to ten minutes as the other guard looks through a thick, leather-bound ledger - all through the closed gate. Eventually, as your patience wears thin, a small, thin halfling with an immaculately pressed blue suit.

He nods curtly to you and takes the invite from the guard. He takes a further few minutes before turning back to you and handing the invite back to Markus.

I apologise for any misunderstanding, but as the porter of Ascanor Lodge, I cannot permit you entrance at this time. You do not have reservations in our books and despite your claims, I have no evidenceto justify allowing strangers into the lodge. From the looks of you, unlike the rest of the guests, you haven't come here to take a peaceful retreat. I want no trouble, so please be off, and take whatever troubles you bring somewhere else.


The rest of the afternoon passes quietly. After the discovery of the body, the mood is sombre.

Once again you make camp where you find a small clearing between the trees although this time all of the watches pass without incident save a long, low howl in the dead of night that momentarily gives Davos chills.

By the morning of the next day the narrow path you have been following joins a wider, though still wild, route. Not worthy of the name road, it does bear the tell-tale signs of the passing of heavy wagons making it the closest thing to a thoroughfare you have seen thus far.

You follow it for several hours to the south east until it breaks through the trees into an enormous cleared area, in the middle of which sits a wooden walled log cabin - although fortified manor house seems a better description.

Ascanor Lodge is constructed out of layers of interlocking pine logs set atop a shallow stone foundation. Far from a simple cabin, the main lodge rivals some of the grandest mansions of Caliphas. Even from this distance you can see the grand scale of the lodge and the many levels and balconies that adorn it's face.

A ten foot high, vine-covered stone wall surrounds the entire property, accessed by a double arched gatehouse. You can see a pair of guards chatting for a few minutes just outside the gate which opens as they approach and then closes promptly behind them again.


In their humanoid form, werewolves look like normal people, though some tend to look a bit feral and have wild hair. Eyebrows that grow together, index fingers longer than the middle fingers, and strange birthmarks on the palm of the hand are all commonly accepted indications that a person is in fact a werewolf. Of course, such telltale signs are not always accurate, for such physical traits exist in normal people as well, but in areas where werewolves are a common problem, the traits can be damning regardless.

Of all the various types of lycanthropes, it is the werewolf that is the most widespread and the most feared. Stories of werewolves haunting lonely forest roads, prowling misty moors on the outskirts of rural societies, or dwelling in the shadows of the largest cities are widespread as well. In most societies, werewolves are feared and despised—and with good reason, as the typical werewolf personifies all that is savage and bestial in a lycanthrope.

Just as wolves are pack animals, werewolves have been known to gather in colonies and live among their own kind, humanoid by day and beast at night. Visitors to werewolf villages are generally rushed out of town before nightfall so as not to discover the citizenry's dark secret—unless, of course, the pack decides that the unlucky visitor won't be missed by friends back home.

All lycanthropes have three forms—a humanoid form, an animal form, and a hybrid form. Equipment does not meld with the new form between humanoid and hybrid form, but does between those forms and animal form. A natural lycanthrope can shift to any of its three alternate forms.

A natural lycanthrope's bite attack in animal or hybrid form infects a humanoid target with lycanthropy, a magical curse.

In any form, natural lycanthropes can communicate and empathize with animals related to their animal form.

They are notoriously susceptible to silver and Wolfsbane is said to cure the affliction


Jon and Cara attempt to piece together the movements of whoever hung this poor man from the tree.

The tracks of several small animals criss-cross the clearing and their movement, along with the fairly rapid growth of the plan life here, make following the tracks that they do pick out - those of perhaps half a dozen or so humanoids - extremely difficult. The best they can manage is to determine that the tracks came from the south east and appear to lead back that way.


Markus casts his keen eye over the scene and picks out the more prominent details.

The flowers are Wolfsbane - a toxic plant that is said to drive off werewolves and even cure the curse of lycanthropy

Crossbow bolts:
The bolts that fired into Sebastian and Markus from the trap are smeared with a greyish substance. It appears to be Silversheen, although has long since lost it's potency

Silver knife:
The fact a silver knife was used to kill this man as well as the presence of Wolfsbane suggests this man was afflicted with the curse of lyncanthropy, or at least whoever killed him thought he was.


Markus and Sebastian move cautiously forward to investigate the corpse.

As they near, there is a thrum of crossbow strings and a barrage of bolts hail toward the pair.

Markus, FF: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (9) + 15 = 24 Hit
Damage: 5d8 ⇒ (1, 7, 1, 8, 4) = 21
Sebastian, FF: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (1) + 15 = 16 Miss


Rod of extend, lesser: 1d100 ⇒ 100 Sorry Markus, no Rod in stock


The crows scatter at Sebastian's approach, taking flight to land in the branches of nearby trees where they caw angrily at the monk for interrupting their meal.

With the birds gone you can see the corpse of a naked man hanging from a large yellow pine, bound to the trunk with rough cords. His mouth hangs open at a somewhat odd angle - clearly the jaw is broken - and it is stuffed with large, pale purple flowers.

His wrists and ankles are swollen and dark with bruises marking where his bindings cut into his skin, but the large silver hunting knife buried deep in his heart seems the most likely cause of death for this unfortunate man. Where the blade has carved an enormous gash along his stomach and chest, the same purple flowers have been rammed into the cavity.

Image above


As Morbar settles in to take his watch, the hours begin to drag by and at times he struggles to keep his eyes from closing.

The horses appear to be extremely nervous. Tied up a short distance away from the fire, they shy and whinny, eyes wide and bright in the moonlight. They catch a scent of something that frightens them and they tramp and stamp in discomfort.

Morbar moves to the treeline to investigate, every leaf and branch made clear to him despite the darkness due to his dwarven heritage. He sees nothing to give him concern but cannot shake the feeling of being watched and for the rest of his shift, he keeps Dawnbreaker handy.


Thr next day dawns bright and clear sending shafts of light scything through the dense forest canopy to create beams of glittering sunlight that dapple on the streams surface.

The horses have calmed somewhat but seem sluggish due to their disturbed rest. Nonetheless you press on. The Lodge is no more than a day away now and you should arrive there before noon the next day.

Later that afternoon you pass through a small natural clearing. The air is filled with the caws and calls of carrion birds and your throats go dry at the sight in the centre.

A single tall pine tree reaches toward the sky. It's lower branches have been cut away and a person lashed to its bough ten feet up. Dozens of black birds squabble over it as the peck and tear at the flesh. From this distance you cannot make out any detail beyond the murder of crows


With whatever creature it was long gone, the group explores the ruined tower.

Soft webbing wreathes the walls, ceiling, and floor of the ground floor of the tower. A broken staircase leads up into nothing but mid-air now and the walls crumble in several places.

Several lumps bulge outward along the floor, unidentifiable under layers of thick webbing.

You cut into them and find the dessicated bodies of half a dozen humanoids that are too wasted to be identified. There is also one body of a human male dressed in fine clothing that is only partially cocooned. The blood on his tunic is fresh leading you to believe he was only recently killed.

There are several items of interest on the bodies in the webbing.

Potion, DC 20 Spellcraft:
A potion of Heroism (Caster level 5)

Ring, DC 16 Spellcraft:
A ring of Feather Falling

Blood-soaked letter from the fresh corpse, DC 25 Linguistics check:
The sealed envelope is soaked in blood. It contains a severely damaged letter that is barely legible but you just about make out enough to tell you this is a reservation for a room at the Ascanor Lodge for a minor nobleman named Echtmoor Dravin and is dated a week ago.

There is also 762 gold in assorted coins.


The Lodge is about two days away anyway Sebastian, this forest is enormous, covering well over a thousand square miles


Ok I'm going to head this off a little bit. I've been away with work and not really able to keep up but it would take a significant amount to cutting and burning to get through these webs. I don't think Markus could just send his chain in there for example, it is too choked with webbing. In any case...

The party hacks and burns it's way through the webbing into the tower. The stench as the thick strands take flame is almost over powering but you press on, determined to put an end to the insidious presence here.

By the time you cut a path through to where Jon describes the shape he saw, you find a thick mass of webs and detritus that acts as some kind of nest. A hole dug through the packed earth floor appears to lead to an underground tunnel that leads off into blackness.

Whatever lured Jon here is no longer present.

Essentially it could feel the number of people entering the tower through its webs and decided to make its escape. Should you follow the tunnel you need to crawl for about half a mile and find it exits into thick forest. It's possible to track the creature if you really wanted to but honestly this encounter is just to show that the forest is a weird and dangerous place.


Yeah of course


The DC to climb the tower is only 15 as it is crumbling and offers plenty of hand and footholds. However, it doesn't look particularly safe to do so.

Round 1 - Heroes

The webs in the tower act as the spell. Therefore you can cut your way through a 5ft square at a time with relative ease.


Web creates a many-layered mass of strong, sticky strands. These strands trap those caught in them. The strands are similar to spiderwebs but far larger and tougher. These masses must be anchored to two or more solid and diametrically opposed points or else the web collapses upon itself and disappears. Creatures caught within a web become grappled by the sticky fibers. Attacking a creature in a web doesn't cause you to become grappled.

Anyone in the effect's area when the spell is cast must make a Reflex save. If this save succeeds, the creature is inside the web but is otherwise unaffected. If the save fails, the creature gains the grappled condition, but can break free by making a combat maneuver check or Escape Artist check as a standard action against the DC of this spell. The entire area of the web is considered difficult terrain. Anyone moving through the webs must make a combat maneuver check or Escape Artist check as part of their move action, with a DC equal to the spell's DC. Creatures that fail lose their movement and become grappled in the first square of webbing that they enter.

If you have at least 5 feet of web between you and an opponent, it provides cover. If you have at least 20 feet of web between you, it provides total cover.

The strands of a web spell are flammable. A flaming weapon can slash them away as easily as a hand brushes away cobwebs. Any fire can set the webs alight and burn away one 5-foot square in 1 round. All creatures within flaming webs take 2d4 points of fire damage from the flames.


Yeah no problem, Sebastian. I'm away with work so my posting will be sporadic until Thursday as well.


Unless you decide to go back in there it's Combat Over


The rest of the party moves up. Davos, Cara and Markus reach the tower (unless any of them cast spells) one round later.

Sebastian and Morbar reach there one round after that.

Round 6 - Enemy

There doesn't appear to be any movement from within the tower.

round 7 - Heroes


Jon strength check: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (8) + 11 = 19 Success (just!)

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