Revery bids goodbye to Arwen, Gwen, Nogglegrop and all the others. It's like a big family they are leaving behind, something none of them really had a lot of. He feels rested, more healthy. Indeed, stronger from all the construction work - even though he didn't get his hands dirty all that much, he did some, and it has paid off in his improved physique.
His boots do not feel cold, nor does any of his body, thanks to the electrum and diamond amulet he had crafted himself. He's also thankful for his simple hat, which keeps the sun, snow and rain out of his eyes.
He looks back at Justis, and hopes they will be back in time for the Winter Festival.
Thinking ahead, he wonders what obstacles lie in store for them on the path. The hunger for the promised weapons has been stronger of late, and he wonders if that, too, means something. He has not had a waking dream in many weeks, but now something appears in front of them; it is a large Iksar, speaking to them in the tongue most of them now understand, even old Ksenya. It tells them, "hurry to your deaths," and laughs.
He shakes his head, knowing it is just a dream, nothing real, nothing to worry about. Nothing to worry about...
Suggested watch order:
Suggested marching order:
You move single file more often than not due to the leader needing to carve out a trail for the rest of the group to walk in.
Revery and Kwen get constant wafts of the wizard's sweet pipe smoke.
Age has stolen much of the old evoker's muscle mass, forcing him to travel light and use the walking stick to keep his feet. Even being careful about his footing he pulls himself out of snow drifts more often then he is able to glide over them.
Each and every time there is that infectious smile and he comes up brushing away the clinging remnants of his tumble and laughing good-naturedly.
Of interest is that Ksenya can keep pace with the best of the group, and Kwen will call for a halt long before he is winded. You can just imagine how fit this man must have been in his younger days to still have this kind of fortitude.
Despite walking all day through the snow in sandals Ksenya does not appear to suffer from the cold.
Nonsense flows from his lips, nothing more than bawdy tales better-suited to rough bars than travel across the Faydwer Plains, but he occasionally wrestles a smile free even from the most grumpy of the party.
As the group makes camp the human pulls out a tinkered lantern very similar to the one Sajeek carries and lights it so he can take the first watch.
If anyone can sleep with the addled old man watching over them.
Having so much equipment strapped to him, it's difficult to tell where it ends and Gramorn begins. Somehow, the halfling manages to trundle along with the rest of the group without slowing them down. His new armor is polished to a brilliant sheen, with the holy symbol of Quellious emblazoned on the breastplate. He casts a striking image, when he can be seen around the rest of his supplies.
Gramorn has no trouble sleeping, even with Ksenya watching over them. The old man seems capable, just a bit daft and the journey through the snow is particularly tiring for the small halfling. He nods at Revery's watch order, deferring to his experience with the rest of the group.
Kwen had managed to glide over the snow, his balance keeping him from the worst of trudging through the snow. Kwen didn't mind the pipe smoke and was rather impressed with the old man keeping pace with the party and even surpassing the limits that Kwen thought Ksenya would have. Kwen managed to get tired before Ksenya did, still the half-elf was getting less worried about Ksenya outside of combat. 'We shall see what may come our way, this could be a boon to say the least.' Kwen thinks to himself.
Kwen didn't mind the watch order, it made sense; Kwen didn't have too much difficulty in the dark, as for Ksenya taking first watch, Kwen had slept through worse.
A night among the ruins of the elven stronghold remind the group the importance of vigilance. So many forces are arrayed against goodly folks, so many monsters cruise the darkness, that any show of weakness might be your last.
Your pace is kept fast enough to cover ground, but slow enough to permit Sajeek to hunt, for the rest to watch for dangers, to ensure your heading, and possibly most importantly slow enough to ensure you are all combat ready should the situation call for it.
It gives you time to consider what you know of the places you travel through and to.
The Lesser Faydark
Brownies and faeries watch from hidden places throughout the ancient forest. They care little for visitors and even less for evil individuals. This hasn't stopped dark elves from setting up several logging camps within the wood.
The Greater Faydark
Unlike its smaller, quiet cousin in the Lesser Faydark, the Greater Faydark is abuzz with activity. Orcs and ogres constantly tramp through the underbrush, leaving trails a blind kedge could follow. Meanwhile, wood elf rangers and druids follow these trails in a never-ending battle to thin the numbers of their foes.
The high elves call Felwithe their home and many others have longed to do the same. A quiet, serene palatial city in the Greater Faydark, Felwithe does not have the bustling markets and riffraff of a larger city. In their place is a quiet undercurrent of magic and old, but living, tradition. A river runs through the town, and the wizard, enchanter and magician guilds claim an ivory spire rising high above a pool of water on the far side of the city. The shining city is under the benevolent rule of King Tearis Thex.
Perhaps you should travel to the wood elf city. Being half human, and half wood elf, Kwen will feel right at home in Kelethin.
Not far from its sister city of Felwith, Kelethin is the home of the wood elves and many half-elves. The wood elves live safely on their platforms in the treetop city above the marauding Crushbone orcs. The platforms have no railing, which can be disconcerting to visitors. Dwarves especially feel intimidated by the city since they are used to living far below ground, not far above it. However, the residents need no railing or other such safety measures, and the guardsmen appreciate the flexibility it gives them in firing on targets below. Around the city lifts carry people and goods from the grounds to the platforms nestled within the treetops. Visitors who aren't interested in nature may find that the city has little to offer them due to Kelethin's close ties with its environment. The druids and rangers watch over the city as its protectors and guardians.
Your Faydwer map is so crude it is of little use to you beyond knowing that once you come far enough north you should start in a general eastward direction to get to Felwithe. This does not become more apparent than when you reach the place where your map suggests there is a massive opening leading northward into the forests.
Here you only find mountains and a narrow and precarious trail that leads up to the craggy peaks above. Those that miss a step here will risk a deadly fall down hundreds of feet. The season does little to make you confident in every step you take.
Only dwarves would work this hard for a caravan to pass down, and seemingly back up, this tight corridor. It must be an amazing sight to watch them unload everything, and then move their wagon with heavy ropes.
Ksenya only laughs and continues forward, this being but another barrier in a lifetime of barriers that he has dominated.
Suddenly Ranthok's Ridge makes more sense in why the Seeking Clan didn't simply come around this way to attack Kaladim.
Sajeek was pleased to find out that Ksenya could at least keep up with them and did not slow them down in the least. Being able to keep a faster pace was a nice change. Unlike like their gnomish friend, Gramorn had no problem, sometimes plowing a trail for the others. In addition, the old man didn't seem bothered by the chill. And his fingers or lips weren't turning blue from the cold, so it wasn't a case of Ksenya forgetting about the cold.
When they camped for the night, Sajeek ended up staying up for both Ksenya watch and then his own. The vah shir only need a relativity short cat nap, about 4 hours or so. He spends the time looking over his map and looking over spells in his book.
"I think the best way to go, after we make it through the mountains, is to Kelethin," Sajeek says after the others have woken up and begun moving about. "There, we can find a guide to take us through Greater Faydark to get to Felwithe."
Emerald eyes looking up at the mountains and the path they would be taking, his tail twitching as he thinks.
"I'm glad we didn't leave any later then we did," the vah shir says with grin. "The mountains are going to be a bit trickier to get across."
Revery looks up to the range of peaks before them, and nods. "I have little in the way of spells to help us, aside from a small muscle booster and some misty protection in case we're attacked. We'll have to just trudge and climb, I suppose."
He wonders if Ksenya might have some spells to help them travel, but does not ask at first. Then he thinks, why not, and decides to ask, just to be sure the wizard doesn't forget. After all, Revery forgot to use his Serpent Sight last night. It's easy to do, forgetting...
"Ksenya, do you have any spells that will help us climb that? Or fly over it?"
Ksenya chortles, slaps his knee, and snorts, as if the mere suggestion was ridiculous. He pulls up the bottom of his robes high enough so his bony knees are showing and starts his ascent. A powerful wizard he might be, but none of you have seen anything to suggest his is more than a strange old fool.
The climb is tediously slow, made all the slower by the ice and snow that clings to the mountain stone. Several slips demonstrate how dangerous this climb is, leaving more than one skinned knee or elbow, though the worst by far is suffered by Ksenya. Even the most fit among the group, unexpectedly being wizard and enchanter, not counting the kejek tiger, are panting by the time the top is reached.
You find the top as the last afternoon sun smiles down upon you and have entered the forest called the Lesser Faydark.
The Lesser Faydark is certainly forbidding to any outside observer, yet it retains a dark and enchanting beauty. Despite the brightness of the day the woods are shrouded in shadow. From the Steamfont Mountain Trail, the hidden valley spreads out like a dark carpet of shaggy conifers, perpetually wreathed in shadow and mystery. Occasionally murders of crows rise up from the trees, or a lone eagle or hawk cruises in the empty skies, but beyond this the valley appears to be entirely uninhabited.
From your high vantage point you can see a low range of craggy mountains dividing the Greater Faydark from the Lesser, and this winding trail is seemingly the only way to get from one region to the other. You are confident that you can find this pathway.
Descending into the valley confronts you with a tangled overgrown realm that seems to be a living thing in and of itself - thick, tangled, and almost malevolent in its attempts to prevent outsiders from entering.
You are confident that the trail you saw from above should be right here, but it appears to have vanished in the descent.
After the long climb, and then the easier but still tricky descent, Revery suggests a rest stop. He takes out some water and rations, and says to the others, "Didn't we see the path somewhere around here? Perhaps I will go up and take another look." He points straight up, into the sky.
"Then again, Kwen is half elf and has better eyes than I do. Kwen, do you want to go up about a hundred and fifty, two hundred feet at most, and find the the path?"
He will sit and start to study his spell Levitate, both the regular and Quickened versions.
Gramorn is coming along with learning the language of the iksar. Months among the group at Justis had afforded a great deal of time to do so. Ksenya shows no interest in learning the tongue, and simply wanders away when the lessons are being given. This becomes the default language the group has at their disposal to speak right in front of the addled wizard.
A late lunch fills bellies as pulls from waterskins slakes one's thirst. The short reprieve, after snow is cleared enough to sit, gives everyone a chance to catch their breath and rest weary muscles.
Climbing up takes time, as does the descent that follows, but the sure-footed rogue is the perfect choice for the job. Having shed the mortals the eagle made bipedal half-elf glides upwards until he has a sufficient vantage point to see the pathway below. It takes Kwen a moment to connect that the group is unable to see what is so obvious from his position.
Climb (Kwen): 1d20 + 19 ⇒ (20) + 19 = 39 (critical success)
Kwen guides the party to a section of the twisted undergrowth and urges them to walk into it. Expecting to get caught in the tangle turns out to be the right path, and while the first few steps are paradoxical and blind, the group finds themselves en route to the Greater Faydark.
(Revery, Sajeek and Ksenya: please include a spellcraft DC 32 roll for more information)
Spellcraft (Ksenya): 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (10) + 15 = 25
Kwen gets to the bottom and has the exact same problem as the others, and needs help to find the entrance as well.
You stand in a narrow, winding animal trail. barely distinguishable among the thick undergrowth. The sun never finds the ground, but the snow has worked its way in making it even harder to find the trail.
(Sajeek and Revery: please include a wilderness lore roll in your next post)
As Kwen descends, Revery is a bit nervous his spell may end, but he's ready with another fast version of it just in case. It is not needed, however, because of Kwen's efficiency in finding the right path.
Passing through the hidden area, Revery wonders what caused the undergrowth to form like that, but he is really not sure if it was a spell, a druidic or fey effect of some sort, or just a bizarre natural occurrence.
Spellcraft for undergrowth source: 1d20 + 23 ⇒ (3) + 23 = 26 (+2 more for alteration spells)
Wilderness Lore: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 5 = 20
He is prepared to impart a misty enchantment upon each member of the group, should they need it, to help ward off the scratches and scrapes from the brambles and nettles.
Sajeek looks about, a puzzled expression upon his muzzled face. He glances back behind them trying to figure out what just happened. Seeing Kwen looking confused, the vah shir calls to him, bringing hims to the rest of the group. (Spellcraft (DC:32):1d20 + 8 ⇒ (20) + 8 = 28)
As the vah shir brings his emerald gaze back to the front, looking about the the winding animal trail, his moist nose twitching as he breathes in the crisp mountain air. Well, he could almost it a game trail, the path was rather overgrown. (Wilderness Lore:1d20 + 14 ⇒ (10) + 14 = 24)
Revery and Sajeek (success factoring in the bonus from aid another) work together to ensure the group remains on the path, it being more of an intuitive exercise, to get into the mind of the animals that carved the trail, rather than anything the senses can deduce.
Branches block your path, and the snow-slick undergrowth slows your progress, but the group continues on without too much in the way of discomfort.
Surprisingly it is not one of the arcane geniuses that works out the puzzle before them, but the part time spellcaster. Sajeek has seen this magic before and is sends a shiver up his spine: the capricious and malicious fey uses magic just like this to send travellers to a horrible demise.
It is perhaps less surprising for the beastlord when Gramorn steps onto a pit trap.
(Gramorn please include a DC 15 reflex save to avoid the fall onto the punji sticks)
Looking back once more, a shudder dancing along the vah shir's vertebra making his hackles stand on end. It had struck him suddenly, as to why the confusion seem somewhat familiar. Year ago on Luclin, he had run afoul of fey while he had lived in the jungles on his own. The mind twisting magics were not something one easily forgotten. Assuming one survived running afoul of the fey.
"That was fey magic," Sajeek blurts out as he looks at his friends. "And not the good kinda fey magic." Scratching Bast's ears as he looks around once more. "It would be a good idea for us to be on guard. It's likely something knows we are here."
Ksenya takes the news that the oft-psychotic fey were about in stride. So calm is he that you would imagine someone just told him it might rain later. He continues to puff at his pipe and keeps pace with the others, his hat kept low to ward off the rays of sun that could not pierce the trees, and his cane leaving a trio of tracks.
Each of you had heard of the fey. Brownies, Bixies, Pixies, and Faeries. Creatures that occupied the forests of Norrath, so it was no surprise that they would be found in the Faydarks, for they are the largest forests on the planet.
Revery might know more about their capabilities beyond what Sajeek mentioned about their illusionary magics.
(Revery please include a single monster lore roll to learn more)
We all know about the fey. Chaotic, annoying creatures of the forest. Like enchanters, they use illusions and charms to fool people and lure them to.... whatever.
Knowledge/Monster Lore (fey): 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (8) + 11 = 19
"Sajeek is right, of course. We must be careful."
Gramorn senses the danger just in time and jerk back, falling backwards, but out of the mouth of the trap. "Great, so we can expect more of this moving forward? Just what we need, dangerous pranks by forest creatures who get their jollies by preying on travelers, while climbing a dangerous mountain pass. Aren't there some friendly fey creatures too though?"
Gramorn calls Kwen up to take the point, deferring to his better observation skills.
Reflex Save: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (15) + 3 = 18
Kwen gives a grin that seems to say "What a trap?" The rogue felt invigorated after the climb, the view had been enjoyable enough that Kwen almost didn't want to climb back down. Clicking his tongue at the pit trap the rogue looks for a way to avoid the trap for everyone, or at least the best possible route.
Disable device if needed 1d20 + 20 ⇒ (2) + 20 = 22
Search check to find some means to bypass the trap 1d20 + 16 ⇒ (16) + 16 = 32
spot check 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (15) + 9 = 24
Revery remembers reading that Faydark fey are a territorial and suspicious lot, who view the outside world with fear and hatred. Faerie, Brownies and Fae Drakes will be hostile to all they meet, where Pixies are not automatically hostile to outsiders.
Gramorn feels the "ground" 'neath his lead foot simply collapse. Showing unexpected fleetness, considering that he is built like the older stronger brother of a brick s#@#house, he simply drops back keeping his extremities free of danger.
The ground was simply a pit with some dead branches and leaves covering it. The snow make it nearly impossible to find.
Kwen approaches the pit, probing to find the edges, and carefully clears the debris out from around the 9 evenly spaced and wickedly sharp punji sticks. They appear to be covered in some sort of resin, which turns out to be old excrement. Such a foul coating would cause any wound inflicted by these sharpened sticks to become infected almost immediately. The rogue efficiently knocks the weapons over making the trap nothing more than a pothole in the pathway.
Looking down into the simple, but very effective trap, Sajeek frowns, looking at the resin coated sharpened sticks. A scowl finds it's way to the vah shir's muzzle. This was similar to how cowards hunting large hunting cats or bears.
Given the small size of fey, it made sense, that they would trap their lands. Aside from their tricky magics, it's not the magical creatures could do much of anything. They couldn't really fight, they only had their tricks, and as long as nobody started taking apart the forest they should be okay.
"Oh, I'm sure there are fey that don't want to drink our blood. I just doubt there living here," Sajeek says with a short grin as he lifts his gaze from the pits. "Of course, I'm sure if we were a bunch of high elves or wood elves, we'd have fey throwing themselves at us as we traveled through the forests."
"And we should be very careful of how we treat the forests while we are here. No setting huge bonfires, and if we need to make a fire, we should use fallen timber, rather then cut any down," the vah shir adds.
7 hours and 3 disabled traps later, placing Kwen at the front of the marching order was ideal for finding traps before they drew blood.
Something about the woods ahead does not feel right.
(please include a spot vs. DC 30, listen vs. DC 29, and initiative roll in your next post)
Spot (Ksenya): 1d20 - 2 ⇒ (8) - 2 = 6
Listen (Ksenya): 1d20 - 2 ⇒ (10) - 2 = 8
Initiative (Ksenya): 1d20 - 1 ⇒ (15) - 1 = 14
(Kwen: please include a DC 25 search roll to see if you discern that there is a trap in this area)
Hide: 1d20 + 27 ⇒ (5) + 27 = 32
Sneak: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (16) + 15 = 31
Hide: 1d20 + 27 ⇒ (3) + 27 = 30
Sneak: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (14) + 15 = 29
Hide: 1d20 + 27 ⇒ (11) + 27 = 38
Sneak: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (16) + 15 = 31
It turns out to be a perfect ambush point for the trail is only wide enough for one person, or maybe another person squeezing through.
Revery enjoys the hike through the forest, even though he knows it has its dangers. He has picked up a stick, useless as a weapon, to help him navigate through the path before him.
After some time, he says, "I believe the sun may be going down soon. Should we make camp?"
Spot: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (6) + 3 = 9
Listen: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (7) + 8 = 15
Initiative: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (6) + 0 = 6
Kwen looks around not, his senses tingling, he starts looking for what sent off his senses.
search check 1d20 + 16 ⇒ (1) + 16 = 17
spot 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (17) + 9 = 26
Listen 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (3) + 6 = 9
intitive 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (17) + 8 = 25
Kwen continues on as if nothing happened, because nothing had set ofg his senses (failed sense traps vs. DC 25).
It is a bad day to be the lead of this group, but it is something that the rogue signed up for. Hopefully he lives through the experience.
Nodding at Kwen's whispered words, the Beastlord continues padding forward. The vah shir looks around out of habit. They were entering a very narrow part of the path. Bast "murred" from behind Sajeek.
In other words, a perfect ambush spot for a predator. Or worse, a handful of fey eager for blood.
Listen Check:1d20 + 8 ⇒ (14) + 8 = 22
Initiative:1d20 + 3 ⇒ (6) + 3 = 9
Bast's Spot check:1d20 + 8 ⇒ (16) + 8 = 24
Listen check:1d20 + 8 ⇒ (16) + 8 = 24
Initiative:1d20 + 7 ⇒ (5) + 7 = 12
A stream of drool falls from Gramorn's gaping maw at a time when it was crucial for his attention (no post, lost action).
You march single file in an area that another person could squeeze past with some difficulty. Being in a narrow, winding animal trail. barely distinguishable among the thick undergrowth, has ever been the perfect place for an ambush.
Marching Order: Kwen, Gramorn, Sajeek, Bast, Ksenya, Revery
What follows is an explosion of poisoned smoke as Kwen's ankle trips the vine crossing the path. The front three choke trying to throw off the effects of the powdered whore's bane. Kwen instantly recognizes the poison as Lethargic Bliss and understands how devastating that could be to the group's combat effectiveness.
(Kwen, Gramorn, and Sajeek: please include a DC 25 fort save in your next post)
As three tiny javelins leave three tiny hands, targeting the first two of the group, focusing on the heavily armed halfling, you see your first fey creature in Faydwer. The diminutive fey creatures are similar in appearance to faeries - small, beautiful, elfin creatures - but are somewhat more delicate and slender, with dark hair and fragile-looking antennae. They are dressed in light, loose garments, suited to their nomadic ways and to quick escapes into the shadows of the trees.
Pixies. Revery's information seems to be incorrect since they look ready to murder you. If this reception is indicative to "no automatically hostile to outsiders" you would hate to see how the other fey will treat you.
You are totally unprepared for the attack (flatfooted), but so is the middle pixie who throws her javelin behind her (critical failure) due to a far too early release.
Tiny Javelin (Kwen): 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (6) + 12 = 18
Damage: 1d2 - 2 ⇒ (1) - 2 = -1 1 damage
Tiny Javelin (Gramorn): 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (1) + 12 = 13 (critical failure)
Damage: 1d2 - 2 ⇒ (2) - 2 = 0 1 damage
Tiny Javelin (Gramorn): 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (10) + 12 = 22
Damage: 1d2 - 2 ⇒ (1) - 2 = -1 1 damage
(Kwen and Gramorn: please include a DC 16 will save in your next post or be confused for 1D4 rounds)
1 - Wander away for 1 minute (and do not roll another action until the minute is up)
2-6 Do nothing for 1 round
7-9 Attack the nearest creature for 1 round
10 - Act normally
They flutter ahead of the party about 10', but the confinement of the pathway makes it difficult for all those behind Kwen and Gramorn to engage them without flattening those in front of them. Ranged weaponry appears to be the thing.
- (3) Pixies
Coughing after the odd colored smoke hits Sajeek full in face, the vah shir shakes his head. He snaps his eyes closed for a moment, hoping to avoid smoke in the eyes (Fort Save (DC:):1d20 + 7 ⇒ (17) + 7 = 24).
Not that it works in the slightest. Sajeek is slowly drawing a javelin when a big, goofy smile splits his muzzle. He felt good. Really good. Sajeek better then then when he had a headful of Healfling pipe weed and a gutful of potent booze.
"Hey guys, maybe we should just sit down and watch the snow fall, man. That'd be cool," Sajeek says slowly. His emerald eyes slowly watching the glittering wings of the little buggy fey thingies.
Bast on the other paw, was not amused in the least. A dark, violent sound snarl grows to full force in the tiger's throat. The hunting cats instincts screamed danger. And the reddish-orange tiger knew just how to respond. With a roar the reverberates through the narrow pass and near deafens those nearby, Bast snaps into motion.
Sajeek gets his chance to sit down and look at the snow. Well, he is more or less slammed into the ground. Bast uses his spirit-brother like a spring board. And 800 pounds of tiger did a fine job of bouncing Sajeek off of the snow covered path.
Bast's bite attack:1d20 + 17 ⇒ (4) + 17 = 211d6 + 9 ⇒ (3) + 9 = 12
Shrugging off the momentary disorientation caused by the magic of the fey attack, Gramorn advances to the pixie on his left and hefts his earthbreaker, attacking it if possible.
Will save vs DC 16: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (8) + 8 = 16
Fort Save vs DC 25: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (20) + 10 = 30
Initiative: 1d20 ⇒ 11
Attack on middle pixie: 1d20 + 20 ⇒ (4) + 20 = 24
damage if applicable: 1d8 + 11 ⇒ (2) + 11 = 13
Sajeek, spear in hand, is unable protect himself from the trap, but gets too much on his furry flesh (contact poison) and feels his world slow down around him. Each step is a forced labour as the drug induces a pleasant euphoria that detaches the mind from the body (slowed).
Bast clears Kwen's head, with a bit of paw to face action, putting him in biting range of the tiny threats. His attack misses by a fraction of an inch (Pixie AC 22).
Gramorn, perhaps protected by having more of his skin covered, but more likely just the innate toughness associated with his vocation, crosses the distance in a heartbeat, roughly knocking Kwen aside in the process, and brings his earthbreaker into the side of middle pixie. The tiny creature offers little resistance to the attack, and appears sorely wounded by the strike.
(Kwen: please include a reflex save vs. DC 12 to avoid all of the friendly jostling that is coming your way in the confines of this tight path)
It is nearly impossible to target a specific pixie since they flit about so much.
Ksenya stares intently at the others, seemingly in his own world while the blood is flowing. The upside is that the old man is not hindering the party in any way, but he is not helping either. It is a bad time to freeze up.
Perhaps those that did not want him here were right.
Revery, lucky to be at the back as long as the attacks don't come from that direction, tries to disable the whole situation. First, he targets the farthest one he can see with Tashan. Then defensively, he casts Mezmerization on a spot far enough back to catch all the pixies and none of his friends (just less than 20' back from the nearest). An array of scintillating colors erupts from the enchanter's hand above the pixies.
Tashan (free action, no AOO, 2 mana)
No save, recipient receives -6 Magic Resist, -1 saves versus spells with [Magic] descriptor.
Duration: 10 min
Mesmerization, (cast defensively, DC 20, 14 mana)
Channelling: 1d20 + 20 ⇒ (2) + 20 = 22
Subjects in 20' radius are mezmerized.
Duration: 4 rounds
Will Save, DC 24 (includes -1 CHA mod)
(HP: 70/70, Mana: 186/202)
The party will need to be educated of the enchanter's capabilities for area of effect crowd control in the future, lest they be caught in the spell's area later on.
Revery finds that the each of the Pixies have innate protections against magics affecting them (SR 12), and though it is a light "armour" of sorts, it does foil one of his attacks.
Spell Penetration (Revery vs. DC 12 Pixie 1): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (12) + 10 = 22 (success)
Spell Penetration (Revery vs. DC 12 Pixie 2): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (1) + 10 = 11 (critical failure)
Spell Penetration (Revery vs. DC 12 Pixie 3): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (17) + 10 = 27 (success)
Will Save (Pixie 1 vs. DC 24 Mesmerization): 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (20) + 6 = 26 (success)
Will Save (Pixie 2 vs. DC 24 Mesmerization): 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (3) + 6 = 9 (N/A)
Will Save (Pixie 3 vs. DC 24 Mesmerization): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (2) + 5 = 7 (failure)
The furthest back fey creature stops flapping and falls to the ground. There is a moment where the enchanter must be holding his breath, for even a bit of damage (1 damage) will break his spell. Luckily the pixie weighs next to nothing, and the soft snow works in the group's favour.
Three pixies had attacked the group, one has been sorely injured, and now another is lying on the ground tashan'd and oblivious of its surroundings.
This is one of those moments where one just giggles and pretends like the spell was slated for a single target.
Fort Save DC 25 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (2) + 5 = 7
Will save DC 16 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (5) + 4 = 9
Reflex Save DC 12 1d20 + 16 ⇒ (14) + 16 = 30
Confusion 1d10 ⇒ 7
Confusion duration 1d4 ⇒ 3
Kwen takes in a full breath of the poison, knowing as soon as the effects hit that he is in major trouble as the sweet smell hits him. The poison he knew was Lethargic Bliss, Kwen lashes out with his fist too stoned to remember to draw his weapon provoking attacks on the rogue as everything around him takes on a weird shape, even the tiny javelin that has stuck him seemly fades into a type of undead. Even as that thought strikes him the pleasing feeling of the poison makes his blows feel like he is moving through water.
1d20 + 12 - 4 ⇒ (4) + 12 - 4 = 12
damage 1d3 + 4 ⇒ (3) + 4 = 7 subdual
Kwen is at the leading edge and gets hit with the most contact with the poison (failed fort save, slowed) and while he tries to get his bearings he is impaled and the javelin steals his senses for a time (failed will save, confused), luckily he is able to dance around the onrush of bodies without slowing them or being thrown to the ground.
It is a lumbering strike, that misses Bast by a wide mark, but the attempted strike is missed by no one.
It appears one of each of the sides of this fight were taken down in the opening exchanges.
Ksenya does nothing.
The pixies work to put down the two melee combatants with tiny javelins and while the first misses Bast by a wide mark, the second finds purchase in the halfling.
Tiny Javelin (Bast): 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (4) + 12 = 16 (1 damage)
Tiny Javelin (Gramorn): 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (12) + 12 = 24 (1 damage)
Each fey flies up to above the expected attack range of the frontbliners (fly 20'), but in doing so they give a chance for Bast and Gramorn to attack (incurs an AoO).
(end of round)
(start of new round)
Gramorn reaches up in an attempt to swat the malicious fey creature out of the sky. As they fly out of reach, he calls out, "SURRENDER NOW AND NOONE ELSE WILL BE HARMED!" He holds out a flicker of hope this can be resolved without further bloodshed.
AoO: 1d20 + 20 ⇒ (8) + 20 = 28 damage: 1d8 + 11 ⇒ (5) + 11 = 16
An explosion of thorns erupts from the ground 'neath the front liners.
(Bast, Sajeek, Kwen, and Gramorn: please include a DC 25 Reflex save to only take half damage from the thorn trap)
Delayed Thorn Trap Damage: 4d10 ⇒ (10, 5, 7, 8) = 30
Kwen finds that he his senses have come back to him (affect ends after this round) and he can see clearly again, acting completely normally even though he remains under the affect of the Pixie's spell.
Confusion Duration (Kwen): 1d4 + 1 ⇒ (1) + 1 = 2 (2 rounds)
Confusion Affect (Kwen): 1d10 ⇒ 3 (act normally)
The innate madness connected with the pixie's poison steals the little halfling's sanity for the time being, causing him to stand still staring into the distance.
Will save (Gramorn vs. DC 16 Confusion): 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (5) + 8 = 13 (failed)
Confusion Duration (Gramorn): 1d4 + 1 ⇒ (2) + 1 = 3 (3 rounds)
Confusion Affect (Gramorn): 1d10 ⇒ 3 (do nothing for 1 round)
Pravus Mortis sees its second group member lose their minds to the tiny creature's attacks and from the sounds coming from the woods you expect company soon.
What follows is truly a thing of beauty, stealing your words and making you feel like you have drawn your last breath. Ksenya (60/60 hit points, 42/140 mana remaining) raises his hands to the sky and draws down a 20' radius, 40' high pillar of flame directly on top of the group, and then totally ignoring the cries to stop does it again (quickened spell).
Each of these magical creatures are especially resistant against such attacks, and as such the wizard has a separate unseen battle to shatter their mystic defences.
Spell Penetration (Ksenya vs. DC 12 Pixie 1): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (11) + 10 = 21
Spell Penetration (Ksenya vs. DC 12 Pixie 2): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (19) + 10 = 29
Spell Penetration (Ksenya vs. DC 12 Pixie 3): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (9) + 10 = 19
Reflex (Pixie 1 vs. DC 22 Pillar of Fire 1): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (1) + 10 = 11
Reflex (Pixie 2 vs. DC 22 Pillar of Fire 1): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (16) + 10 = 26
Reflex (Pixie 3 vs. DC 22 Pillar of Fire 1): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (13) + 10 = 23
Fire Damage (Pillar of Fire 1): 5d10 ⇒ (4, 9, 5, 5, 10) = 33
Spell Penetration (Ksenya vs. DC 12 Pixie 1): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (5) + 10 = 15
Spell Penetration (Ksenya vs. DC 12 Pixie 2): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (19) + 10 = 29
Spell Penetration (Ksenya vs. DC 12 Pixie 3): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (10) + 10 = 20
Reflex (Pixie 1 vs. DC 22 Pillar of Fire 2): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (16) + 10 = 26
Reflex (Pixie 2 vs. DC 22 Pillar of Fire 2): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (7) + 10 = 17
Reflex (Pixie 3 vs. DC 22 Pillar of Fire 2): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (14) + 10 = 24
Fire Damage (Pillar of Fire 2): 5d10 ⇒ (4, 10, 10, 3, 3) = 30
For some reason you cannot comprehend you are untouched by the flames (quest spell), though your surroundings are all aflame and destroyed.
Three charred Pixie corpses lie at your feet.
(end of combat)
Apparently Ksenya is of use.
It does not take long before the halfling has his senses again.
Confusion Affect (Gramorn Round 2): 1d10 ⇒ 2 (do nothing for 1 round)
Confusion Affect (Gramorn Round 3): 1d10 ⇒ 10 (act normally)
Something is approaching at a high rate of speed, and it much larger than a pixie.
Twisting and diving the two feline's try to avoid the sudden explosion of thorns that were part of the pixies trap.
Slowly getting to his feet, something that wasn't the poison's fault. The vah shir was pretty much stunned by the fire magic that had just been summoned down my the old man. Bast seemed to be having the same problem. The big tiger looked around and "murred"
Sajeek looked at Ksenya with new eyes. He wasn't just some crazy old man following them. He was a crazy old man that could summon powerful magics.
Their day got a little bit better.
At the sound of something big moving towards them, Sajeek's ears twitch.
"Nice magics, Ksenya. Thanks for that," the vah shir says with a grin. Still feeling the effects of the poison, he nods slowly. "It sounds like we need to get moving rather quickly."
Revery just about falls backward when the forest erupts in flame. A pang of jealousy runs through his head, down his spine, and out his toes, leaving him with a jumble of thoughts. This is interrupted by the sound of something large coming through the dark forest. He notes with perversity that the pixie must no longer be mesmerized.
"Which way?" is the only thing he can think to say at the moment.
(HP: 70/70, Mana: 186/202)
Ksenya continues along like nothing happened, seemingly oblivious to the conflagration that he called down upon the area.
Pravus Mortis' steps are harried for many miles, which is difficult for those that are bleeding from the traps, and pixie strikes. Forward is as good as back, and your every step might be your last. Only through teamwork does the party avoid the majority of traps and keep ahead of whatever monster lies behind them.
Hours pass and the exhausted party is able to clamber up the winding trail over the low range of craggy mountains that divides the Lesser Faydark from the Lesser. Such becomes a good place to camp, and after a restless night they awake tired and sore, but safe (full health, full mana) and are able to climb down to the larger of the forests that Norrath boasts.
From your high vantage point you can see that the Greater Faydark is very dense, at least in terms of foliage. The trunks of the forest's great Broadroot trees (as the locals call them( are in some places spaced widely enough to allow a large wagon to pass, while in other areas they are packed so closely together that a man drawing a handcart or dressed in bulky armour would have some trouble passing through. The trees are invariably massive and old, towering several hundred feet into the air and usually at least twenty feet across at their base. The lower trunks have no branches, making climbing difficult for the novice, although the trees’ thick and craggy bark does provide some footing. When the lowest branches do begin — at impressive heights of 50 feet or more — they spread out rapidly, often intertwining with those of neighbouring trees. These branches are thick enough for a man to walk along quite easily, without the supporting branch moving a single inch. Broadroot leaves are broad as well, roughly the size of an ogre’s head and shaped rather like a bearskin rug, with a thick body, two tapering stubs on either side, and another at the top. Most of the leaves are dark green on the top and a pale grey-green on the underside, but among the very top layers the leaves are lighter and more golden from contact with the sun.
Very little plant life exists beyond the Broadroots because their large leaves block sunlight from reaching the forest floor. The little undergrowth present consists of occasional vines, plus moss and lichen. Moss does grow well in the low-light conditions, and many of the tree trunks are coated with it, providing a brighter green contrast to the dark wood of the bark. Mushrooms also grow well in Greater Faydark, and are usually found clustered about the base of the trees — some of the larger varieties of these mushrooms reach four feet in height, and can be eight feet across the cap. Vines are sometimes seen draping across the high branches, linking trees together; they also trail down around the trunks and even onto the ground. Ground vines may be hidden beneath the fallen leaves in some places, and these are thicker and darker than their aerial cousins.
One of the oddities of Greater Faydark is that, although its trees are not evergreens, they do not lose many of their leaves in winter. Instead, the leaves seem to curl upward, as if striving for more sunlight during the cold winter months. Snow never falls in Faydark, and rain only filters down gently even during a heavy rainfall, for the foliage above is so dense it does not allow large droplets or flakes to pass. What rain does reach the forest floor is usually reduced to a fine mist, filling the air with tiny sparkles.
One of the forest’s other oddities is that it has few if any saplings. The trees do bear nuts and fruit, and these do fall to the ground or get carried away by animals, but not enough light reaches the floor for a young tree to grow, except in the rare situation when a nearby tree has fallen, allowing a narrow shaft of sunlight to reach the darkened forest floor below. Because of this, Greater Faydark has not altered its borders in centuries. Even if a new tree manages to take root, it generally has nowhere to go.
Greater Faydark is surprisingly warm, given the lack of direct sunlight, because the sun’s rays warm the leaves of the trees, which then transmit that heat into the forest proper; the leaves are so thick that they prevent warm air from escaping again. As a result, the forest is warm but muggy, the air thick and filled with moisture. Skin and clothing become damp within minutes, and metal rusts easily if not oiled every night. Fog is common in the forest, so that at times the tree trunks are vaguely seen dark pillars and the mushrooms loom suddenly out like boulders. Wind cannot breach the heavy foliage either, and the air is still and stagnant, rich with the smell of decaying plants.
Those who choose to walk through Greater Faydark are advised to come properly equipped. Metal items should be wrapped in oilcloth whenever possible. Clothing should be kept light, or else oiled against moisture. Thick boots are wise, since the ground is often soggy and the rotting leaves make for slippery footing. Skin should be covered to avoid a multitude of insect bites unless one has access to herbal mixtures or other means designed to repel such creatures. Full waterskins are essential, since most of the water in Greater Faydark is found in small, stagnant ponds.
Gramorn takes the full brunt of the thorns and shakes his head to clear it from the effects of the fey poison. Smiling at Sajeek, he says, "Told you I figured he burn us to a cinder if he was of a mind to."
Given the state of the forest, Gramorn is thankful he does not need to eat or drink. He spends evenings polishing his armor and tending his weapons against the humidity. He offers up his 2 full waterskins if they are needed by the rest of the group.
Reflex Save vs DC 25: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (17) + 3 = 20
" Well this is going to be a nice fun trek." Kwen says to himself, glad they had survived without anyone being slain. Removing the extra lining from his coat, glad that he had payed so much money for his clothing, so it had been treated for various weather condition.
Still Kwen hated this forest, there was something about it that was aggravating, of course it could be the insects that were already staring in on what little skin the rogue had available.
"Much better then being chased angry fey creatures," Sajeek says with a grin as he looks over at Kwen. The vah shir sticks out his tongue at the rogue. Ears flicking at the new noises, Sajeek looks around at the Greater Faydark.
Glancing at Gramorn, the Beastlord chuckles. It looks like he was going to be buying the first round. The halfling's gut had been right about Ksenya. And Sajeek was glad that the warrior had been right. He had been worried that they were simply escorting the old man to a painful, grisly death. At least now the vah shir knew that Ksenya wasn't a helpless old man. He had his own fangs.
Flicking his ears to keep the bugs away, Sajeek looks at his friends. He hides a smile with his hand, as he looks around keeping busy. Their exposed flesh was practically screaming "Dinner" to the local insects.
"Must be rough not having fur," Sajeek grins at his friends. "I'll see if I can find some herbs or the like to help with the bugs a little."
It really is an impressive feat to have killing magics cast upon the party, but to have the control that Ksenya demonstrated is incredible. Flames had fallen atop of you yet none of you had been singed in the process (quest spell feat). Revery might see benefit in attaining that sort of control, especially since the others he traveled with showed a great proclivity for charging into danger.
As you come down from the rocks you catch a flash of a number of faeries, but they do not appear to have seen you and the tiny creatures disappear in short order.
Keeping ahead of the rust is a nearly full time job. Sajeek is able to provide a berry blend with mud to keep the bulk of the insects away, but those that walk with heavy armour/clothing are suffering. You expect to find water, but it is only stagnant.
There appears to be no discernible paths, so you will need to attempt to stick to a heading (Sajeek's wilderness lore roll is sufficient to ensure you will be able to maintain a heading today), but first you need to decide what heading that might be.
Revery says to the others, "Perhaps we should find our way to Kelethin, for surely there must be a well-used road or path between there and Felwithe. Sajeek, do you not have a detailed map of this forest? My recollection is that if you head east, following between the mountains and the Greater Faydark, you will eventually reach Kelethin. But that is solely based upon a poor map I saw when I was sixteen."
Knowledge/geography: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (4) + 12 = 16
"Thank you for the berry mud, by the way. The mosquitoes find it as stinky as I do, apparently."