Today my friends and me had an adventure. First we went to play near the golemworks. Epher said he knew a way into the gecko. The gecko helps hold up the big bridge. It is supposed to be haunted. The whole gang climbed down outside the gecko. It was a long way down. We climbed in a window. We found some old stuff and some nasty rotten food. Vex ate it! I guess dragons eat anything. Yuck. It was very dark in the gecko, but we found some torches and lit them. And some candles. I kept a candle and a fintandsteel. I found three silver in an old pile of straw. We found lots of locked doors and a stairway down. There were more locked doors down there. It was very dark and spooky even with our lights. One locked door had a giant spider skelington behind it. We all took a piece to show where we had been. Another locked door had a skittering noise behind it. Kelynn was going to open it, but we stopped him. Something in there talked at us. The words were wrong. Then we heard a big door close and big footsteps coming our way. We all ran. Once we got out in the sunshine, we all laughed. Then we went to the bazaar. Edwin and Nina bought us treats. The treats tasted good. After lunch we will have another adventure. This time we will go to the big clock under the brige. Some of the gang traded the spider bits for money. I think they got a lot. I didn't trade mine. I hid mine in my private box at home.
Under the bridge we stopped at a shrine. Lugh said it was to his momma's goddess Dawnflower. Inside it was very old but not dusty. The statue of the goddess glowed bright with magic! It felt nice there. Felu came late to find us by herself. There were too snatchers following her. When they saw all of us they looked mean and went away. Maybe they won't follow us to the clock.
Nobody, we've been doing this a LONG time; I think Mordean Gray started the journal thing in a Hero System Planescape game nearly twenty years ago (we were still playing in the back room of the local gamestore then), and it has always been tied to some minor in-game reward. In that game, I think it was an extra experience point, in Useplanb's RotRL game it was a single d20 reroll. So, us munchkins who like our extra stuff have just gotten into the habit.
I've remarked in the past that we all just naturally follow the rule of improv, that there is no denial. If someone writes it, that is what happened. Doesn't mean that another character might not remember it differently, but we all try not to contradict one another. It really adds to the story if you're not arguing all the time about who did what when.
Hello my name is Sam. I am seven years old. I live in Magnimar. I have a bunch of friends. I call two of my friends Huge and Dickory. Huge is a very big kid. Dickory has a metal hat and a stick horse named Hickory and a pet dragon we call Doc. The pet dragon can talk! I live above my papas shop next to the bazaar of sails. Papa buys stuff off of the ships in the harbor and then sells it to people who come in the shop. Mama helps him and cooks and cleans and teaches me to read and rite. She says I am very smart. Everyone else says I am cute.
My friends and me have a secrit. Sometimes we go and play under the bridge where mama and papa say I shouldn’t go. It is very dark under the big brige but its fun too even though it smells bad sometimes.
My mama and papa have a secrit to. They whisper about our family curse. They say that if I manifest that I will have to go and be with my uncle Boris in Chelleaxe. My uncle Boris is funny but scary. He always smiles and laughs and says funny things but his eyes are hard and meen. He wore big robes and smelled like spices when he came to visit. He looked at me a long time with his scary eyes before he went away again.
I have a secrit too. I can do a magic trick! Mama and papa don’t know I can do it. I won’t tell them cause they are afraid of magik. My frends don’t know either. Maybe I will tell them someday. They think magik is neat. I do too.
From the diary of Kori'el Shalani, 2 Abadius:
The group had vanished again, just as the company I was traveling with was nearing the Storval Stairs, and Calypso said that we had to return to Magnimar right away. Once there, I met an old scholar at the Stone of the Seer, who needed someone to carry a message for him to a certain Feiderich B., a member of the Storm Guard who had been researching the Rimeskull mountain just yesterday. He gave me his letter along with detailed directions to reach the mountain and cast a spell on me that I'm not familiar with. Long story short (too late), I arrived at a circle of standing stones below a grim spike of mountain with a skull carved into its face, the mouth a gaping cave entrance. There were copious blood spatters on the ground about, and the only clear path (with the occasional crimson splatter to lead the way) led up a giant-sized staircase to the cave entrance.
The stairs were guarded by two large elementals, but they were easy to evade. Inside was a long tunnel, and an icy fog followed by a long slide to a precipitous drop. It was a good thing that I had elected to fly the tunnel (I'm not terribly quiet walking, and Calypso warned me to try and be stealthy), and so avoided the trap. Along a winding ramp, I heard an ominous flapping, and far below me a white dragon (!) emerged from a tunnel and lay on the floor of the cavern.
There was some sort of strange portal magic going on down there, and this dragon didn't seem to like it one bit, as it kept directing its breath weapon into the portal opening. Before long it seemed to come to a decision, and entered the portal. While tempted by the dragon horde on the cavern floor, I resisted as I waited what seemed to be a prudent interval, and followed the dragon in.
No sooner had I gotten through than the magic keeping the portal open failed, and it snapped shut. I found myself in a corridor with a disgruntled dragon ahead of me; it was squeezing and scraping along, but didn't seem aware of my presence. Eventually it emerged into a large circular chamber with seven large statues; the dragon smashed one, apparently out of spite, then chose a different corridor and crawled away.
As I was taking in the awesome chamber in which I found myself, a spearhead laid itself gently on my shoulder, and the bearer asked me to identify myself. I did so, and indicated that I had come a long way to deliver a message to Freiderich B. of the Storm Guard; but that we should give some thought to leaving this chamber in case the dragon decided to return. The fellow introduced himself as Sheldor, also of the Storm Guard, and we went to find his companions, thankfully in a direction other than the dragon had taken...
Xan-a-du! (clap-clap-clap) Xan-a-du! (clap-clap clap). I saw that movie in about 1980 (a friends was a REALLY big ON-J fan) and still have that crap in my head. Too bad it was Gene Kelly's last film.
Ok, end threadjack.
I kind of expected some email chatter about tonight's fiasco, and am currently deafened by the silence. I can't wait to see how everyone's assumptions play out. Not well, is my thought. I'm kinda looking forward to Useplanb's very first TRK.
Tangent, I have some ideas, two of which I have presented to Useplanb, about how we could get someone into the Runeforge. I have several character concepts that could be adapted to those ideas; it just depends on what the party needs when the introduction rolls around (i.e., who else dies). Freiderich's player and I have pretty much agreed to switch roles if he bites the bullet in the next few rounds. I'm trying to keep an open mind.
What comes next for me depends on a) who else dies, and b) how Useplanb decides to introduce possible replacements. I heard some player rumbling about retreating to Magnimar to regroup, but who knows if that's even possible at this point?
It would be nice to get away from the front-line-fighter concept for a while, but if everyone survives, I'm kinda stuck with it.
Simon came around the corner with 87 hit points, 34 AC and a Jingasa of the Fortunate Soldier (once per day ignore a critical or sneak damage), so I wasn't worried about Moxie and thought Freiderich was out of bombs (I missed his comment of "I need to save these...). Also, Simon had no clue what was going on, was pissed off at Rikert for being such a wuss; everything we had faced so far in this part of the Runeforge had been a pushover as far as Simon was concerned, and... he was worried about Moxie. I thought I played it pretty well, and really didn't expect 130 points of electrical damage out of Freiderich. Ouch.
Action report 2 Abadius, moments later, Simon Roque reporting.
1) Once Rikert engaged, the… whatever they were, they quickly swarmed him. Freiderich tried some electrical thing which didn't seem to affect them, and the rest of us joined the assault. I drank a Fly potion followed by an Enlarge potion, and managed to flank one of the… women for Rikert and Lynn; we all got in good hits. Two of them fell dead from the combined attack (I sort of wanted to save one for -ahem- "interrogation," but the other two blinked away, and I heard Lynn grumbling once again about enemies that did that.
2) After that, the group went all stupid. Xandu was healing Rikert, Freiderich and I went to examine the cage with the "living" occupant, Moxie and Lynn headed for the big pavilion, and Davok had an arrow nocked and was watching for more enemies. As Freiderich said something about a 'powerful Force Cage', I heard Lynn shout, "Davok: giants!"
3) Lynn and Moxie were no longer to be seen and the opening that had been in the silk of the pavillion was closed. Everyone headed that way (Xandu out front AGAIN), and I could hear giantish voices and the sound of clubs pounding away inside the silk walls. It certainly seemed that the main doorway was a trap, which I planned to play turnabout on. I headed at full speed to the nearest of the silk walls, shouting "gods dammit, Xandu" and slashed at the fragile silk intending to run through and flank the giants in the doorway.
4) Whatever that stuff was, it wasn't silk. My sword hung up, and it felt like a brick wall when I slammed into it; I barely managed to keep my feet. Xandu was inside now, and Rikert was hesitating for some unknown reason; I've never met a Paladin as unwilling to engage the enemy as this kid -maybe he plans to live forever. Even Sheldor was in front of him, trying to get at the bad guys. I charged for the entrance. Davok was pouring arrows into the gap, and by the time I arrived all but one of the giants was dead.
5) Inside, there was another opening to the left, so I asked Rikert (who had finally found the guts to close) if he had the last one, and headed deeper into the interior. Lynn had managed to extricate himself, but he looked pretty banged up and Xandu was seeing to his wounds; Moxie and Freiderich were nowhere to be seen. I heard Rikert flapping up behind me as I turned a corner to the right at a dead run, and spotted Freiderich. What the...
Player note- we got Useplanb's permission to go ahead and post updates last night, so here goes my combined update for the last two sessions:
Action Report, 2 Abadius, about 20 minutes later, Simon Roque reporting.
1) After the dragon retreated, those of us still on the hill returned to cloud form and wafted up the mountain to the cave entrance. Two very large earth elementals were standing guard, and Freiderich just had to talk at them. They spoke back, but we continued past; they obviously couldn’t stop us. We found Xandu and Sheldor some distance down the tunnel, dropped back to human form and got healed up. Freiderich spread some darkvision around, and we continued on into the mountain.
2) Encountered an area of freezing fog obviously left behind by the dragon. No trace of the dragon fear, so it didn’t seem to be nearby; however, the other side of the fog was a trap: really slippery ice at the lip of a downward slope. I was still embiggened, and luckily was the only one to fall victim to it, and I slid down the slope as the others scrambled onto a ledge and desperately tried to help me. Weighing well over a ton, I had to slap Lynn’s hand away; he was flying and I knew that he wouldn’t be able to stop me, and might well be dragged to his doom. I wasn’t particularly worried, as I had replaced my snapleaf. The only real worry I had was whether the “deathslide” would end at a precipitous drop or simply jagged ice and rocks.
3) The correct answer was ‘a’, the precipitous drop. I managed to latch onto the edge and spent a few seconds dangling over what seemed to be a bottomless pit before I was able to clamber back up to my feet. I shrank back to normal size about then, and Lynn and Rikert (also flying, as he still had the wings and glory shone round about and all that jazz) were able to assist me over to the ledge and the others. Bracing, I tell you. (Player note- I let out an Archer-esque “WOO-HOO” as Simon went sliding)
4) The ledge spiraled down about 300 vertical feet, and ended in a cavern containing a) seven heavily carved standing stones set around b) a large central pillar of ice with c) a dragon horde off to one side. Seven keys, seven stones, eight of us. Freiderich assigned the keys to the stones, and we set off the BIGGEST TRAP EVER. The keys turned, the stones vibrated and glowed, the central pillar changed into some sort of portal, and like fools we stepped in.
5) A short almost normal stone corridor led to an immense chamber, with seven 20 foot tall statues of what could only be the Runelords Themselves. Right vain bastiches, every last one of them. Something that looked an awful lot like what had been described to me as a “runewell” glowed and bubbled in the center of the chamber, and seven corridors led off into darkness.
6) We wandered around a bit, and settled on the corridor that seemed shortest to explore first. As we stepped across the threshold, a voice boomed out, something about the abjured halls of striving and we weren’t worthy and would die, blah blah blah. I did feel some sort of disquiet, like I wasn’t welcome there, but I just shrugged that off. The corridor opened up into a partly collapsed chamber, where it looked like some sort of magical battle had taken place. A silvery rod fizzed and crackled in the center of the floor, and I was all for just checking out the passages that led away, but the brainiacs just had to screw with it. It took notice and pulsed out some sort of wave that cancelled out nearly all of my magic stuff. THEN they decided to vacate that area, and we went on exploring. We had to stop while some of us dug some suddenly inconveniently large and heavy stuff out of our haversacks and leave it in a pile.
7) We soon found a small room with a floor covered in some kind of silvery liquid, and the brains spent a minute or so putting it in flasks. They seemed pretty excited about it. Back to the main chamber with the rod, and we waited a few minutes for it to pulse again. After it did, we hustled across to a passage on the opposite side. More collapsed stuff, and a room covered in nasty smelling goo. Davok went in to scout it, and found some kind of hidden panel, so I went in to watch his back; fat lot of good that did either of us. A big ooze-thing humped up in the middle of the room, and swatted us both hard, then bound us up in blorps of itself, and it was stupidly strong; neither of us could break away, and the weapons we could bring to bear didn’t seem to hurt it at all. Luckily for us, the others came to our aid (Xandu first, the idiot, poking the thing with his pointy stick). Eventually, Freiderich threw enough bombs onto the thing that it gave up the ghost.
8) Behind the panel we found a lever and some potion bottles. We gathered up the stuff and threw the lever, but despite it taking considerable effort nothing seemed to happen. So back to the first chamber, where we once again waited for the rod to pulse, gathered up our stuff and headed back to the central Chamber of the Seven. Lynn said that the effect that turned our magic off would wear off in a few minutes, so we waited a bit and it did. Man, is plate armor ever hot and scratchy without that comfort feature; I really don’t know how I got along without it.
9) Counterclockwise around the chamber to the next corridor. No magic warning this time, and after a short walk we came to an enormous (lit) space that could only be described as a temple or a cathedral to the more carnal delights. Part of me felt right at home there, but again part of me was repulsed (I really don’t get that part, it wasn’t THAT much different than any number of cat-houses I’ve patronized). There were gargantuan statues of the Naked Runelord (Freiderech said she was named Sorshen, but he could be making that up for all we know) held up the roof, and there were gilded “human cages” I guess, spaced around and some sort of silken pavilion in the center. Most of the cages held bodies (which was UNLIKE any of the cat-houses I’ve visited), but there seemed to be a survivor in a cage off to our left. Xandu (of course) led the way, and I cussed and followed along with the rest. Four flying seductresses jabbered at us (and made motions that did not need any translation), but I stayed focused on the job; maybe if they didn’t force us to kill them all, we could have some fun before we went back home. Rikert, of course, was having none of it (various thoughts ran through my head having to do with how monastic orders seemed to draw poofters like sewage draws flies), and did the angel thing, and flew up to engage…
Action Report, 2 Abadius, Simon Roque reporting.
1) After recovering from the paranoia trap in the Lamashtu temple beneath Sandpoint, we were determined to go to this “Runeforge” and obtain weaponry with which to defeat Karzoug. Since Haytham and his pet Roc were no longer around, we couldn’t use the flying/scrying/teleporting scam we’d used to find Jorgenfist. The spellcasters decided that Wind Walking would be the best option. While they were hashing out the logistics, some of us took a brief trip to Magnimar to sell Falchion-boy’s junk and replenish consumables (If I’ve got the money, I’m never again going ANYWHERE without a Snapleaf).
2) The next morning Xandu cast his Wind Walk spell on us and we spent the next six hours looking like clouds and speeding north to where my map indicated a mountain with a skull carving in it. Once we arrived, we found that there was indeed a skull carved into the mountain, with a cave for the mouth. A stairway led down from the mouth to a hill with a circle of seven standing stones carved with faces. Friederich said that they matched with what he’d learned about the entrance to Runeforge, so we gathered there so that the various spellcasters could do their thing and get the keys that we would need up at the real entrance inside the cave. Davok and I stood guard.
3) We didn’t do well as guards today, because we were taken completely by surprise. A huge white dragon came out of nowhere and proceeded to kick our a$$es. Breathed on Xandu, Rikert and Moxie first thing, then made a flying pass and bit me. I thought that little guy we fought in Sandpoint had a nasty bite; this fellow took me completely off the ground and dropped me a good ten feet away. Barely kept my feet. I turned to face him, and braced for the next pass, but he diverted to the east, swept around and breathed on Friederich and Sheldor. I drank an enlarge potion (you know, maybe I should look into getting another trick too. Rikert ain’t the only one in a rut) in an attempt to draw his attention from the casters, and succeeded beyond my wildest dreams. I thought that his first bite hurt; the second one nearly left me in two very large pieces.
4) Xandu blipped over with Rikert and laid some healing on me, Friederich came over and hit me with something weird that made me all… bendy, and the fight went on. I got in a couple of hits, but the dragon didn’t seem to care. GrAnnie conjured up something, and the dragon shredded it in a blink, but that gave me and Rikert a chance to rush over and engage, we got breathed on for our audacity. I got in a couple more hits before my player’s damn dice froze solid, but then Rikert, Friederich and Davok all got in solid hits and the dragon bampthed away. It looked like we had all the keys, Xandu and Sheldor had already turned to clouds and fled up the mountain, so I gave the order to follow…
After Action Report, 30 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting.
1) Once gathered, the group headed into the underground complex. Moxie kept up a running commentary on what had happened where on the previous foray for the benefit of us “newcomers.” Arrived at what seemed to be a recently cleared stairway choked with webs, descending into the darkness.
2) Rikert led the way with his flaming sword; I don’t believe that the webs gave a crap about the “holy” bit. At the bottom was a partially collapsed room with two corridors leading off with obviously magical fog. Scribbled gibberish was on every available surface, and a disembodied voice held a conversation in some ginzo language with the brainiacs who go in for that stuff. The smaller corridor led to a hidden room with (Friederich said) a Lamashtu (ptui!) birthing pool. Interesting thing, whenever someone approached one of the walls of fog, about half the time they would just turn around and head the other way. Annoying, epspecially when we decided to head (three abreast) into the larger corridor. Rikert, Moxie and I led the way but the others had trouble, and the three of us wound up stepping into what was obviously a temple; complete with an 18’ tall four-armed demon occupant.
3) The new gear came in handy; Rikert did some sort of spell (and the demon laid into him for it), I drank an enlarge potion, and then the world turned upside down (yay, snapleaf). Moxie and I drifted to the new “floor” on what used to be the ceiling; Rikert wasn’t so lucky. The boy had two more days to shop than I did; apparently he doesn’t know how to do it. Maybe servants always did that for him. Anyway, Davok arrived late to the party, and fell to the ceiling just as the demon flipped things around again. I had the sense to drink a Fly potion in between, Moxie had vanished (oh, me too come to think of it. I turned that off as I flew to attack); Rikert and Davok landed like two tons of ironmongery. Rikert grew wings (again) and glory shone round about (again; is he always gonna use the same trick? The bad guys are going to wise up one of these days, they seem to have a line on us), and I took the opportunity to Shield Slam the demon over to the wall, and followed up to keep it there. Moxie’s gun was barking, Davok’s bow started thrumming, and Rikert got into the action too. I think all of us got hit at least a couple of times, but we were all still standing when the thing went down for the count.
4) It became clear that there was an altercation going on back where the others had stayed. Without thinking, I charged right through the fog; only to get stopped short by some falchion-weilding lunatic on the other side. Long story short, the disembodied voice had got tired of talking and brought some demon friends to play with Xandu, Friederich and Lynn. The amazing thing was that the good guys were all still standing when I got there. With all of us in the fight, falchion-boy found out right quick that he hadn’t brought enough guys.
5) Falchion-voice had apparently let slip that the key to the Runeforge was hidden in the wall-scribblings. It took us several hours to track them all down (did I mention that the fog was annoying? It was), and a bit longer to piece together what it all meant: where it was, how to get in, etc. In the meantime Moxie, Friederich and I got hit with some sort of magickal trap. I don’t know about the others, but it made me… just a little bit paranoid. I remember being ready to attempt to kick Rickert’s holy a$$, when he kindly stepped aside and I made myself scarce. (Player note- I was looking forward a bit to that fight, it would have been a good one).
6) So now we know where this Runeforge thing is, and how to get in, and that we can use it to make weapons that this Karzoug guy might be vulnerable too. Looks like we have a little side trip ahead of us.
Now, that's not really fair Mordean. As far as I know, the near forcible rape of a PC only happened once in the Mighty Cron's game, and that was instigated by other players and was defused before the "deed" could be, ahem, consummated.
And wow, I sure did misread "Armor of Fornication" above, didn't I?
After action report, 30 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting.
1) Spent a few hours figuring logistics, then Xandu teleported us back to Magnimar in stages. Spent two days arranging trades in the Bazaar of Sails, and an additional day shopping for upgraded gear. For once, I have some cash left over; I’m sure I’ve forgotten something important.
2) Lynn finished shopping around the same time, and we decided to ride out to Sandpoint. I had an overdue appointment at the Pixie’s Kitten, while I believe Lynn plans to sit around the Rusty Dragon and make goo-goo eyes at the proprietress. While others seem to find Lynn abrasive, I had to change my opinion of him on the ride. He is surprisingly good company if you don’t want a whole lot of jabber all the time. At the Half-Way Inn the first evening, he said, “Two rooms, and your finest bottle of wine.” When we got to Sandpoint and saw Xandu bampf in with Rikert just up the street from us, we both said, “Damn.” That there is my kind of travelling companion. He also looks spiffy in his new robes; covers up the armor and makes him look more elfy.
3) Two captured giants still in town. Earthquake opened up a sink-hole next to the town garrison; 5 men sent in to look around never came out. Bad sounds were heard, and no one has come or gone in several days. After Xandu and Rikert wasted some time yapping at the town bigwigs, the four of us present took it upon ourselves to go in and Lynn and Xandu knew where they were immediately; it was a portion of the tunnel complex that Xandu hadn’t shown me before the giant attack. Found the 5 bodies, and pulled them out for burial.
4) Xandu headed back to Magnimar to gather the others; looks like we have a little side job to take care of before we figure out how to assault Xin-Shalast (wherever THAT is).
I suppose we can forgive the half-orc's slight faux pas of jumping the gun on Useplanb. But maybe HE won't.
For the record, Simon's armor is (now) plain old run of the mill +3 Comfort Plate Mail. No fortification in sight. I prefer just "not getting hit" and trusting in my re-roll boon (from writing the journals) and a Jingasa of the Fortunate Soldier to save Simon from crits. :D
In unrelated news, I discovered that Simon is pretty close to what he could do damage wise and AC wise with the Two Weapon Fighter variation, and faster on his feet with cheaper gear (not needing Mithral plate to get the dex bonuses to AC).
Simon also cranks out considerably more damage than the Shielded Fighter variant, though at a lower AC and without the ability to share an AC bonus of 5 to 7 points with an adjacent ally. Talk about heaven for a certain paladin! Still faster on his feet with cheaper gear.
We just made 12th level, so he can take the option of switching an earlier combat feat (weapon specialization, here I come!) which will go a long ways towards evening up the damage output as well. He's in this for the duration.
After action report, 26 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting:
1) After the fight, Conna cautioned us to remain in the lower complex for a few days to give her time to disperse the giants from the encampments above (apparently, giants gain their authority via challenge and trial by combat with previous chieftains. Conna had gained a considerable amount of authority with our assistance). A search of the remains turned up a key to the giant golden doors on which Flak (deceased) could not find a knob. Entry proved anticlimactic, with no further enemies encountered. The room beyond was a library of impressive extent, complete with a mechanical servitor of some sort. Most of us collapsed into various chairs while the healers treated our wounds and Lynn engaged in conversation with the… clank is probably as good a term as any.
2) Over the next two days, we finished exploring the lower complex and gathered what loot was to be found. We eventually discovered that while in the library, we did not need to eat or drink, and thus saved on some dwindling rations. Xandu took Rikert to Magnimar via teleport (false start there, with some mumbling about the library being “shielded” or some such. He’s never going to get the hang of that spell) and returned the following day with our old friend Freiderich. Lynn had convinced the clank to bring a number of tomes, and after a wide-eyed look around, Freiderich got to work on them. He was able to glean a considerable amount of intelligence concerning this “Karzoug” character (bad-a$$ wizard from 10,000 years ago, maybe vulnerable to enchantment and illusion magic and weapons infused with such) and his stronghold of Xin-Shalast (deep in the Kodar mountains near the highest of peaks in the range, mystically linked with other worlds including a nightmare plain called “Leng” or some such). I expressed the opinion that we should find some of these magical weapons (probably a quest in and of itself), and go find Xin-Shalast and kill this Karzoug in his sleep.
3) Lynn scouted the upper areas and found all the giants gone, so we spent a day exploring the upper complex and keep. No loot to be had; the giants had taken everything of value with them.
4) The largest tower in the keep above turned out to be some sort of tomb, which was guarded by an undead thing wrapped in cloth strips. Most of us were paralyzed with fear of the thing, so for once Rikert was the guy in front going toe-to-toe with it. I had a spectacular vantage point, and was mildly amused at seeing Rikert getting his clock cleaned without the stalwart punching bag (yours truly) taking the brunt. Rikert had sprouted wings again, and the glory shone round about and whatnot, and got in a couple of good licks before the thing nonchalantly disarmed his holy a$$ and sent him reeling. By that time others had gotten into the fight (including Sheldor with some well-placed lightning bolts), and one of them dropped the creature just as I was arriving to get full turn-about on the paladin. Perhaps another day.
5) We took what was to be had from the tomb and turned our attention to the dragon horde (wow, did that thing like copper), then returned to Magnimar to get some R&R, gear up and plan for the next bit of this little game. Now we know what the goal is and what might be at stake; we just need to figure out how to get there, succeed, and survive the attempt.
You're absolutely right. I have the totals right, but messed up the level on PA. Looking forward to getting that -4/+8 next level, and considering putting off two weapon rend for 1 level in favor of weapon specialization. It's all about that bonus damage.
I looked at some of the fighter variants when I was originally building Simon, but I really don't feel that (in most cases) what you get makes up for losing armor and weapon training. I think I'm going to spend the rest of the evening doing a variant build with him as a Two-Weapon Fighter and a Shielded Fighter, and see which looks better to me. There's always that next campaign...
Ah, the two-handed weapon bonus, which I continually neglect. We also don't have a Bard or access to Good Hope (at least, no one has cast that at Simon). So I'm looking at Simon as straight 11th level fighter (+11 BAB)
With the Shield, he's got Improved Shield Bash, Improved Bull Rush, Shield Slam, Shield Focus, Double Slice, Improved Two Weapon Fighting and Shield Master, as well as Weapon training 1&2 (close) for a total to hit of +17 (with power attack) and d10+13 damage.
Without power attack, he's hitting the big stuff more reliably, but dropping to +7 (longsword) and +10 shield, currently clocking in at 32 AC. Looks like all I really can do is get some spell support. It doesn't look so bad from here, but when the cursed Paladin is cranking over 80 damage per round once he gets in the fight, it leads to slight feelings of inadequacy :(
Interestingly enough, I just ran the numbers and found that IF Simon were to hit with all 5 swings without power attack, he should average 80 points per round. With power attack, that jumps to 104. Man, I gots to get me some spell support so Simon can hit more often!
Nobody, Simon has been a TWF (sword and board) from the time he joined the campaign. Longsword (+1 Frost) with a ~17 AB, doing 1d8+8 (three attacks) and +2 Mithral spiked bashing shield with a 21 AB doing 1d10+9 (?) with two attacks (Improved TWF ftw!). I am curious how your characters are cranking those huge adds to base damage though. Clue a brother in?
I know this Tangent, and I love you for it. And I don't love guys (NTTAWWT). I'm fairly confident that my wry wit would come through no matter what character I chose to play, we all crack wise around the table, and a considerable amount of that makes it into the write-ups.
Still, Simon ain't no quitter and I refuse to give in to the temptation to take the easy way out. I don't want to be 'that guy' (looks meaningfully at Haytham/Friederich's player). ;)
But someone has to do the damage when Rikert is polishing his helmet or whatever he gets up to when nobody's looking...
That would be Lynn :D All of these guys crank out much more damage than Simon; though having recently gotten the Shield Master feat, and soon to get Two-Weapon Rend, he seems to be making up the ground with shear number of hits. Since his role of bringing tactics to the group seems pretty much over (Xandu hasn't tied to get out front for several months), he now functions as a lightning rod and punching bag. So far all that's saved him is the best AC in the party.
I was actually thinking of talking with UsePlanB and having Simon "recalled" to service in Magnimar and bringing in a character better suited to filling one of the groups weak spots, but I think I'll just ride along and see how this plays out.
Actually, the fire shield would have taken Simon to -5, and the fall to -18 (one more than his Con score), giving him a clean heroic death, right after he successfully shield slammed Mocmurian into the wall. Simon will never quit (LN, and believes he's on a mission), but I'm kind of tired of being the guy who gets hit alot so that Rikert can do the real damage. I almost screamed when Rikert saved him for more of the same...
After action report, early hours of 23 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting:
1) Rikert indicated to me that he still had a couple of Protection from Fire potions, and I moved up to him and accepted one, right after Mocmurian singed my beard with some sort of ugly green ray; I tucked the potion away and grabbed my own potion of flight. Most of the group had taken cover behind various pillars (Rikert was sprouting wings, and a “holy light shone ‘round about the jeroboam” or so I should think). Mocmurian had zapped Haytham with that same green beam, and was moving toward the entrance hallway, still thirty feet in the air; he was really too big to fit the opening, but I guess he had a better vantage point there.
2) I saw several of Davok’s arrows sticking out of Mocmurian’s hide as I flew up to him; I think I connected once, but I got swatted with a club for my trouble. I don’t know what he had on that club, but it felt AWFUL, and through the haze of pain I saw several of the giant’s wounds closing up. Rikert flew up alongside me, and he got hit too (this giant is FAST), and Lynn flew up on the right flank. Everyone was in on it now, even Sheldor got a flame strike in; Flak had grown to gorilla size and swarmed up a column, but as he leaped at Mocmurian he seemed to strike some invisible wall in the air, and dropped back to the floor. My own second flurry of blows went better (even though a blast of cold shot through me every time I hit), and I got in a solid shield slam which forced the giant back into the wall and out of control. Everyone was hitting him; Haytham’s lightning was crackling down, Rikert and Lynn slashing and stabbing with swords so bright it hurt to look at. As I raised my sword for what I was sure would be the killing stroke, the bastard blipped out.
3) I suspected that Mocmurian had gone for reinforcements, and that we didn’t have much time. Nevertheless we took a few minutes to heal and make a perfunctory search of the place. The fury of the battle seemed to have destroyed a considerable amount of expensive looking lab equipment, but there was plenty of loot to go around if we happened to get out of this thing alive. We moved back down the corridors the way we’d come, and decided to hole up in a small room with two entrances too narrow for giants. Moxie and Davok were watching the approaches, when we heard voices and the slap of giant feet approaching. I was hoping to catch Mocmurian squeezing through a narrow part of the hall, but Davok started the party right away (I can’t fault him for that. He had a good shot and he took it). I had time to drink another enlarge potion (bringing me back to normal size), and charged around the long way, coming up just out of Mocmurian’s reach; miniature Xandu stepped up beside me, and I growled at him to stay back. Mocmurian, the coward, backpedaled and allowed a lamia to step up, and of course she went all out on Xandu. I waded in, with Davok adding the weight of his arrows from behind.
4) There seemed to be some confusion up front. A number of stone giants had switched sides, and were joining us against Mocmurian and the two lamia! As the biatch I had engaged fell, I saw Flak, sandwiched between Mocmurian and another lamia get pounded to the ground; I don’t think he’ll be getting up from that. The second lamia fell, and Mocmurian pulled out a scroll as he staggered; I couldn’t understand his words at first (I don’t speak giant), but then he began to convulse, and fell to the ground. His eyes glazed and then cleared, and then his dead lips spoke to us in common: “So these are the heroes of the age…” A gloating, overconfident speech from a long-dead sorcerer looking to rise again. Well, I got news for you Karzoug, when we come for you—and we are coming for you—you’re going to die again.
Action report, 22 Kuthona (about three minutes later), Simon Roque reporting:
1) We took a few moments to heal some wounds (Moxie and Davok had fought the headless thing and were in bad shape), and went east along the wider of two corridors. No more than fifty feet along, some…THING moved out of the stone wall to our right and rear; and when I say “moved” out of the stone, I don’t mean “burrowed” or “dug” or “smashed through,” I mean it moved through the stone the way we move through air. It appeared, and its swollen belly gaped open and spouted…lava…on several of us. Up until now, the worst I’ve ever been hurt was when the dragon hauled my ashes back in Sandpoint; this lava hurt way worse than that. After that it hit me with claws, and then bit me with that gaping maw in its belly; which seemed to intentionally grind away at my nice new armor, and that REALLY pissed me off. We all went to work as well as we could (the thing seemed to have a bit of a hard-on for me for some reason) and just as it seemed we might be doing some damage, Lynn and I found ourselves walled off from the others. I was really hurt bad, Xandu seemed to be out of healing bursts, Rikert was well back from the fight inspecting the straightness of his sword or something, and I was starting to get a bit anxious when Lynn said, “Don’t worry, I’ve got this. Which way do you want to go?” At that point, “anywhere but here” was a perfectly fine option, but I really hate to pay for the same real estate twice, so as I drank a healing potion I hooked my thumb in the direction we’d been headed. “That way would be great,” I said, and then we were back in the corridor near Xandu and some sort of column of light (he said it would heal us if we stood in it for a moment). I took advantage of that, just as the thing appeared again, this time from the wall to our left, and blorted more lava on us. Not as bad as the first time, thank the gods, or I would have gone to join them. Everyone who could tore into the monster again, and it fell out of the wall as an empty suit of armor just as Rikert came pounding up the hall brandishing his (now glowing with, I can only assume, “holy light”) sword. I really must find the opportunity to speak to that boy about timing.
2) I stood next to Xandu and soaked up the healing light for a good half-minute while the others moved on down the corridor, and into a bigger hallway it emptied into. Flak was running around in his clogs yelling about “no doorknob” (I swear could hear Moxie’s eyes rolling 80’ away), and Lynn was mumbling about calming rituals engraved in the walls, but everyone seemed to be observing the “buddy system” I’d harped on for weeks. By the time Xandu and I had rejoined the group, they had opened a new door (not the big knobless one that had confused Flak), reformed the line, and were fighting some very creepy floating dogs. Flak had thoughtfully grappled one, and I got a good swing in on it just before Rikert (early to the party for once) put an end to it. I stepped up to the one Haytham (I guess it was Haytham, who else of us would turn into a wolf that big? Not Sheldor, as that would require being useful) was fighting, and put the -Fu down on it. Not quite enough to kill it, but it and the one chomping at Davok vanished or teleported away.
3) The room we were in was kind of odd; no corners anywhere, and only one other exit through a pair of double doors. Flak and Rikert went through first, and disappeared into a fog bank just inside (uh-oh, we've been here before. Those Anais-hags were a stone biatch to fight in fog). Lynn and I were next, followed by Xandu and Haytham, with Moxie and Davok hanging back for once (I’d no idea where Sheldor had got to. Maybe ate up by a floating dog). I drank an Enlarge potion to get back to normal size, and Haytham conjured up a howling wind that nearly took us off our feet but blew the fog away in a couple of seconds. BIG room, ceiling lost in shadows, 10’ columns and a stage at the far end. On the stage was about the biggest giant I’ve ever seen. Rikert and Flak were well ahead of the rest of us, when we were engulfed in choking green fumes. Luckily, Haytham had kept the wind going, and it quickly blew away but damn that was awful. I moved up to Rikert’s left to form the line, Lynn came up to just behind my left shoulder, and the ranged guys went to work. I saw hits from both Moxie and Davok, as well as a lightning bolt from Lynn (none of it seemed to faze him much; I guess this is Mocmurian), and then Haytham did a trick we haven’t seen, conjuring up some kind of hot sandstorm that covered that end of the room. I think that got the bad-guy’s attention, as he didn’t stay there long; he walked right off the stage (40’ up in the air, dammit!) and moved toward our right flank…
Action report, 22 Kuthona (about an hour later), Simon Roque reporting
1) We reassembled in the main corridor, doused the lights, and headed on along a sloping corridor that corkscrewed deeper into the earth. The walls gradually changed from roughhewn stone to a type of stonework that resembled what Xandu had shown me beneath Sandpoint and had claimed was Thassilonian. Everywhere else we’ve been has been linked to that ancient empire in some way, and if one of the old Runelords is somehow using Mocmurian as a sock puppet, this seemed a fitting place for it.
2) As the corridor leveled out, it split into branches. The eastward branch was blocked with rubble a short distance along, while the southern branch seemed to open into a dimly lit chamber. As Davok and Moxie stepped across the threshold, Davok quickly shrank down to about Moxie’s size. As we moved into the room, some of us were affected by the shrinking magic and other’s proved immune. I found myself short as well, and joked to Moxie that it was a sign from the gods that the time was right that we should be “together.” Her response was quite unladylike. The walls of the room were disconcertingly warping in the peripheral vision, making some of the group nauseous as well, which made the fight with the two occupying distorted giants more difficult than it might otherwise have been. Still, we were able to dispatch them in short order, and move on to a pair of double doors in the southern wall. Lynn (also short now) claimed that we were affected by a “mass reduce person” spell, and that it should wear off shortly. Deciding not to wait, we pressed on.
3) The next room held a truly enormous cauldron, and a stone golem. The cauldron was emitting fumes that made some of the group gag and choke, groping blindly about. I was not affected, nor were the druids, Flak, Davok and Rikert. We went to work surrounding the golem, and destroyed it in short order (it didn’t hit as hard as the giants, though it was harder to hurt). Credit where credit is due, Rikert did most of the damage to the thing.
4) We assisted our choking comrades to a corridor on the east side of the room, and entered another chamber; this one filled with ranks of frozen giants in armor, as though on review. We all knew it was a trap, but moved in anyway. Sure enough, several of them animated when we came into range, and we went to work. Moxie and Davok took the brunt of the damage, since the zombie they were fighting wielded magical axes of some sort. Everyone accounted for themselves well, and the fight again didn’t take long. I hope that we get to Mocmurian soon, these minions seem designed to sap us of our healing magic more than to kill us outright, and I fear that when we reach the enemy, we will not have enough to finish the task.
Action report, 22 Kuthona (about 15 minutes later), Simon Roque reporting
1) Took stock and consulted the map after defeating the demon kobold from hell. Narrow passage to the southwest led to the redcaps that the giant elder had mentioned, but it would have been out of our way to deal with them. A wider passage to the east led to a smelly area, and then to an apparent bunkroom. Who in their right mind puts a bunkroom right next to something that foul? We managed to sneak through without incident, though how a barefoot guy in a sackcloth robe can be louder than two guys in plate armor I have yet to determine.
2) We had doused all lights before leaving the kobold chamber, and Davok and Moxie were leading the pack. Haytham (in rat form) and I followed about sixty feet back, with Xandu clutching my left elbow and Rickert hanging onto my pack (both blind in the total darkness) with Sheldor and Flak (who can see in the dark) bringing up the rear. As we neared the end of the room of sleeping giants (Davok’s self control in that situation was nothing short of remarkable), there was a muffled cry from out front (Moxie and Davok were around a corner from us) and Haytham squeaked that they had found something. Not being completely stupid, we continued to sneak forward around the corner. As we came in view of a weak light that Moxie was carrying, Xandu did what he does and he and I were suddenly standing next to her and Davok. We were now in a corridor about twenty feet wide lined with various skins and furs, and the next instant I was being stabbed through those skins by an extremely large ranseur! It quickly became apparent that there were creatures stabbing at us through murder holes in the walls, completely out of our reach. Davok stepped up and began firing through one of the holes in the right-hand wall (and was taking far worse than he gave); Xandu stepped up behind him to heal him (and got stabbed for his trouble as well), and I thought it best to hustle on down the hall in an attempt to get out of range (no luck, I got stabbed again too. Ouch!).
3) Farther down the passage, I could see a branch on the right-hand side which I hoped would bring me into range of the attacker that was engaging Davok and Xandu (and would incidentally move me out of range of whatever was stabbing me), so I headed in that direction. Rounding a corner, I came face to face with the biggest troll I have ever seen; and it was wearing full armor! I was hurt badly, and knew that Davok had to be nearly dead, and I was wondering if I was looking my own death in the face when the troll did something incredibly stupid: it dropped its ranseur and charged me, engaging with teeth and claws! I very nearly laughed in its ugly face! Xandu did his healing thing, and I engaged with sword and shield, forcing the monster back. Shortly, Davok rounded the corner behind me and started firing into the troll; Moxie got into the act too, having somehow snuck around into a flanking position! Davok’s arrows were hitting like ballista bolts, and the three of us made short work of the creature. It took us a moment to figure out how to burn the body (Moxie pulled out a wand and said she would take care of it), and I moved across the hall to assist in the fight against the troll on that side.
4) The troll on the left was being grappled by Verthfjolnir (and was being maniacally pummeled by Flak while it was helpless) with Sheldor and Rickert stabbing at it as well. I was a little surprised that it was taking them so long to kill it. Meanwhile, Xandu was calling me back into the main hall; I was afraid that we were about to be charged by the recently sleeping giants we had snuck past, but it turned out that Xandu had cast another spell of silence to cover the noise of battle. I have to give him credit, he’s really coming along well; not once has he run out in front of the battle since our little talk on Hook mountain, and he’s always got the spell we need without having to be asked. He and all the rest are developing into an effective team. I just hope it’s enough to beat Mocmurian, and whoever’s using him as a sock-puppet, this “Karzoug” guy.
Action report, 22 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting
1) The brainiacs planned the operation to death, and it still had an uncomfortable stench of “if” attached. Druids both shape-shifted into crows, and flew right into the central pit of Jorgenfist during daylight. Neither of them died, even though they made several trips. Eventually, Xandu did his magical viewing trick on Haytham while he was inside, and did a bunch of mumbling. Afterward, he announced that we had an ally in the female giant Elder, and that we would go in after dark.
2) In order for all of us who couldn’t change into crows to teleport in, Lynn had to cast the spell from a scroll; to do that he had to see the destination. So, he turned invisible and apparently flew after Haytham (still a crow. Did I mention that that guy is useful to have around? If I didn’t, he is) into the pit and cave complex. When they got back, it became apparent that our plan was very nearly stillborn; something in the cave, a “haunt” had come about a hair’s breadth from killing Lynn dead. I began to have significant doubts about our ally. Haytham healed him up with a wand he’d picked up in Magnimar.
3) The time came for the spells, Lynn did his thing, and we saw a vision of the giant’s camp…but just as it started to solidify it kind of shimmered and changed to the inside of a cave. Some kind of shrine, with images on the walls of giants stepping on dwarves and shiat. Elder giant lady was there, and made us promise to not kill any giants we didn’t have to. We all agreed; Davok looked like he was chewing persimmons the whole time. She’d given us a more detailed map of the complex, and showed us where to go, and off we went. Since this was a sneaky-type mission, we ditched our lights and I drank a potion of darkvision that I had thought might come in handy. Thus, I wound up leading Rikert by the hand. That boy is useful in a fight, but he ain’t the sharpest knife in the drawer if you know what I mean.
4) We managed to sneak right through a mess-hall with some help from Moxie. I felt like an idiot tip-toeing around in plate armor, but we made it through. Down a fairly short narrow tunnel with a creepily quiet spot in the middle and into a fight with a cross between a kobold and a tornado. Crazy little biatch was foaming at the mouth and jumping around like she was on wires or something. The new guy, Flak, got hit hard and so did Lynn; we wound up surrounding her against a wall and just pounding her down. Flak actually got her into some kind of weird wrestling hold a couple of times, but she wriggled out so it didn’t help much.
5) According to the map, the next room is full of something the giant lady called “red-caps;” she also told us to kill them all. From what I’ve heard about them, that might not be the easiest thing we’ve ever done…
Also, the idea that we sold to the Lord Governor of Magnimar was that we would go in to cut off the head of the snake. Simon was hoping that we could sneak in somehow, not realizing that Lynn could cast the teleport spell from the scroll. If it had been up to Moxie, our odds of all getting in on the first try would only have been 56% (yes I did the math, I'm a little weird like that).
I sometimes wonder if your GM pulls you off course on purpose! =^-^=
Well, Xandu casts the spell and misses the target, then Useplanb rolls the miss distance and looks at the map of Varisia on the gaming area wall, and says, "Huh." The first time, he gave Xandu a vision of a whipoorwill (messenger of Desna), dropped him in Sandpoint and left it for him to figure it out.
This time, I just think he thought it was funny. It's his way of messing back with us when we monkeywrench the adventure by literally flying and teleporting past a significant portion of it.
And yes, I did say he'd fark it up.
Action report, 21 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting.
1) After consulting the map, we decided that rather than walk for two weeks we would fly and teleport to the Storvall Stairs (having two druids and a Roc companion aided in this decision). Haytham carried me, Verthfjolnir carried Lynn and Sheldor carried Moxie on a five-day flying trip to the Storvall Stairs, and Xandu contacted us on a daily basis through magic.
2) On day four we spotted some evidence of a raiding party of giants, and on our arrival at the stairs we discovered them to be garrisoned with hill and stone giants well-supplied with throwing sized boulders. We elected to divert our course to the northeast, into the Iron Peaks, and just after dark stumbled upon what appeared to be the main encampment of the giant army. We found cover in the mountains above and west of the encampment just about the time Xandu contacted Moxie; she made a small light as we set up camp, but Xandu, Davok, Rikert and Flak failed to materialize. One of these days that teleport spell is going to drop him into the ocean; no more Xandu and whoever’s fool enough to go with him.
3) Sometime after midnight, the teleporting party arrived; Xandu had taken them to Fort Rannick. He claims that there is some sort of “magical convergence” between there and Sandpoint, and I think he’s so full of shiat his eyes are brown.
4) We spent the next two days with a cold camp, watching the activity in the encampment below while Sheldor and Haytham took turnabout turning into crows and scouting around. The encampment was layed out around what had to be the Jorgunfist fortress; we thought that Sheldor had found us a back door into the place early on the first day, but Haytham found those caves to be full of nightmarish creatures we really had no urge to tangle with (of course, we have no urge to tangle with upwards of 350 giants in order to get in the front door either). Sheldor also located what has to be the lair of the dragon that attacked Sandpoint; an otherwise empty cave full of coins in the mountains a mile or so on the other side of the fortress from us.
5) I’ve been spending the idle time playfully goading Rikert toward walking into the giant camp alone, which Flak seems to find amusing. Waiting around while everyone scouts things out and then endlessly discussing what may or may not have been found is wearing. I obviously didn’t bring enough ale, and I’ve yet to figure out a way to keep a doxie breathing in the Haversack. At least the main army from Magnimar had a supply train and camp followers. Beef jerky and hardtack for dinner again, with plenty of water to wash it down.
LOL Tangent101, that video nailed it. At least that's how our barbarian-monk thinks of himself. hehe Even when playing a ninja-witch. And we will miss the fox too. I think we should keep it around. Alas we can't because we are already on our way to certain death.
Except that Annie/Flak's player HATES that movie.
Uther Eld wrote:
Add one level to everyone. Our only multi-classers are Moxie (who added another level of Gunslinger) and now Flak as a Monk 8/Barbarian 2.
Going from memory, Simon is currently at AC 32 (+2 Comfort Plate Mail, +2 Heavy Spiked Mithral Bashing shield, Jingasa of the Fortunate Soldier [don't tell Useplanb, I want it to be a surprise], +1 Ring of Protection, +1 Amulet of Natural Armor, +3 Dex bonus). He swings a +1 Frost cold-iron longsword (recently traded up for one that glows and has the 'frost' ability; I got tired of having to drop my everburning torch and draw my sword before stepping into combat. Yes, I know about the 'shield sconce', I just think it's stupid); I really wanted something to bring his damage up a bit. He does his part by sucking up a huge number of hits with a high AC (highest in our party, I believe), but having a Smiting Paladin and an 'Empowered Shocking Grasp' Magus standing alongside is a little embarrassing. The Shield and all the Shield feats help, along with 2-Weapon Fighting and now Improved 2-Weapon Fighting, but I'm really looking forward to Shield Master at 11th level.
Prior to Action Report, 13 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting.
1) Headed to Magnimar on horseback, arrived without incident. Decided for once to take advantage of my coin for something other than gear, beer and gash; booked a room in a high class inn for a week, and prepaid for meals and ale. Still spent nearly all my money on the other three more typical items. As far as gear, upgraded the Cloak of Resistance, replenished stocks of cure and enlarge potions (as well as splurging on a couple of “special occasion” potions), and bought a “war hat” purported to have special qualities. It’s black iron and covers my face and head completely, with a grilled area to look through. Quite dashing and matches the new armor.
2) Wound up lounging about Magnimar waiting for everyone else to finish their business. From the rumors I started hearing on the 5th, I estimate that Rikert dropped a bomb on the city fathers at dinner the night before; they seem to be running scared. I just hope that pompous jackass Grobaras is scared ENOUGH.
3) Headed back to Sandpoint (on the same horse I rented to come to Magnimar) on the 11th, same day the Magnimar “army” departed in the same direction on the Lost Coast Road. Those greenhorns are going to get chewed up and spat out by the first bunch of giants that sees them. Left early and managed to stay ahead of them, spent the evening at the Half-Way Inn. We got rooms and a table before the place filled to standing room only. A greenskin who looked a lot like Davok’s long-lost brother was wedged in fairly close to our table, and asked if he could travel with us. Big guy, tusks, no obvious weapons but heavily calloused knuckles. Told him we’d leave at first light, and if he could keep up with a horse he could come. It might be the tusks, but this fellow looks like he has a few anger management issues to work out; hopefully he’ll elect to work them out on giants and other enemies of ours.
4) Arrived in Sandpoint and introduced the greenskin, who said his name was Flak. Turned out he wasn’t Davok’s brother; they claimed not to know each other. Hmmf, the world ain’t that big. Heading on north in the morning; had the forethought to buy a decent map of Varisia in Magnimar, I’ve a feeling it will come in handy on an extended overland march.
After Action report, 1 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting:
1) The giants dead, Davok took to the sky to look for more live ones. That greenskin sure does hate giants. Lynn and Haytham started dragging folk out of the leather bags the giants had carried, and I turned to the wagon to see about this “relic” they were supposedly after. Lynn was able to tell me that none of it was magic, so I snooped around a bit. Some tapestries, chests of flatware, casks of wine (and one of salad dressing; who keeps a cask of that stuff around? Rich guys, that’s who), and a really nice silver inlaid teak desk. The owner wasn’t objecting, so I rifled the drawers and found a cute little hidden compartment with some letters inside. I pointed them out to Moxie (they were little more than notes, really) but they seemed to have some significance to her; she got real serious for a bit, and then stuffed them into her shirt. I got a feeling somebody’s not going to be too happy about having that stuff found.
2) Helped put out the fire at Scarnetti’s mansion, then back to the town proper to deal with the aftermath. Rikert and I managed to get a trussed up giant down from the roof of the town hall (Xandu wasn’t dead after all, he’d been ‘tied up’ with securing that giant. I’ve never seen more granny knots in a piece of rope in my entire life), then we dragged both of our prisoners up to the market square to be dealt with. I figured we’d just build a fire under their feet until we heard what we needed and then turn them over to the townsfolk, but Davok said that to get anything out of them, we’d have to sweet-talk ‘em. Not up my alley, so I left it to Moxie and Rikert. The mayor declared us all to be “heroes of Sandpoint, as if we cared; but if it meant free room at board at the Rusty Dragon, I’d take it. Paid for a nice Hero’s Welcome at the Kitten as well; the best feeling in the world is a good roll in the hay after a fight.
3) The master brewer died in a bag of one of the giants at the brewery. Xandu spoke with the body, but apparently the guy didn’t want to be raised. Neither did Annie. I’m gonna miss that weird little girl, I never had any problems with her.
4) It took Moxie and Rikert nearly a week to break the giants, but they finally got them talking. Found out that this fellow Mocmurian, “a dark giant of old,” has put together an army of seven tribes of giants; this was just one of their scouting parties. Mocmurian was holed up beneath a tower he called “Jotunfist,” in a valley east of the Storvall Stairs. I got a feeling I know where we’re heading next. Moxie and the mayor worked a deal where the giants worked for a week to repair damage they’d done, and then they got to walk away. I figured we’d just wind up fighting them again.
5) An actual army arrived from Magnimar. About 250 guys and some paladins of Iomedae (Rikert’s drinking buddies, I suspect. Assuming any of them let a drop of evil alcohol pass their holy lips), got here just too late to be of any use.
6) Once we got squared away, Xandu teleported Rikert, Lynn and Haytham to Magnimar. The rest of us decided to ride and be sure of our arrival. Time to gear up again…
Action report, draft, Simon Roque reporting
1) As Rikert and I jogged toward the fight at the town hall, I had time to drink another healing potion. Pretty boy is a damned good fighter, but he’s not exactly fast on his feet. He did mention that he’d run all the way from the Rusty Dragon to the north gate already, and had yet to see a live giant; so far they all looked like pin cushions for Davok’s arrows.
2) We turned the corner at the southeast of the town hall, and I could see that there were two giants apparently pounding nails into the hall’s roof, while another was on the ground before us hucking rocks. I drank another Enlarge potion, and got ready to charge. At that moment, Haytham (in his form of a REALLY big Roc) and his pet bird (the one with only a 30’ wingspan) swooped to the aid of whoever was on the roof. At the same moment, Lynn swooped down over the roofs to the south and skewered the giant on the ground, leaving a smoking hole in its chest. I shouted to them asking where the hell Moxie and Annie were, and Haytham answered (weird to hear a gigantic bird speaking common) that they had gone after some giants attacking the brewery. Now I’m REALLY mad. Not only are the two girls off on their own, but there might be NO MORE BEER! Next they’ll tell me that the Pixie’s Kitten is on fire and all the whores are dead. I looked down at Rikert and said, “I’ve still got a haste potion.” He replied, “me too,” so we drank them and took off toward the brewery.
3) It didn’t take long to leave poor Rikert in the dust. I could see through the occasional gap between buildings that Lynn was heading the same way up in the air, slower, but with a far more direct route. Haytham and his pet flew over, and seemed to be carrying Davok. No sign of Xandu anywhere; I hoped he was already there and hadn’t bought that fscking asylum he talks about. As I blew past the town theater, I could see part of the dragon hanging limply from the roof. Good riddance.
4) My haste potion wore off as I rounded the corner of the town square onto Market Street. I was still moving at a dead run, as Haytham’s pet hit a giant right in front of the brewery (which was a total wreck, I’m sad to say). Other giants seemed to be moving toward the battle as I huffed up, but one just collapsed into the street. Haytham hit another one, and the last one fell as I came panting to a halt. We quickly took stock as Haytham returned to human form and neatly trussed up a sleeping giant. We still had to get to the noble’s homes as it seemed there were more giants over there. Another half mile to run the long way around the bay, so I offered to piggy-back Moxie and she swarmed up to my shoulder. The others were all taking to the air (Lynn had touched Davok, so he was flying too) and I thought that I would be late to the party AGAIN, when Haytham said he could fly me, even as big as I was. Damn, that guy is useful to have around.
5) Took to the air and headed toward the tower of smoke coming from the Scarnetti mansion, but shouts from Davok turned us east toward the bridge over Boggy Creek; it looked like a group of giants were pulling a wagon into the woods, and we quickly descended to the ground behind them. My Enlarge potion had worn off, and Haytham had outrun the others so it was just him, Moxie and me, all wounded, facing four fresh giants. I was too pissed off to be worried.
6) The giants charged as I drank yet another Enlarge potion. The other fliers showed up in a timely fashion, Moxie blasting away with her pistol, Annie dancing around flanking and stabbing giants and Haytham grappling one. I managed to damage mine and shoved him back a few feet, when he looked to his left and made a tent-peg out of Annie with his club. Before I could finish him, Davok made him into another pin cushion, so I stabbed and killed the one Haytham was playing with.
Score so far: Storm Guardians- 23 giants, some dire bears and one dragon; invaders one ninja/witch, and maybe a cleric of Desna. Unacceptable losses, as far as I’m concerned; I sure hope this town appreciates it.
Though I'll be the first to give Useplanb credit for doing a fantastic job on this campaign, the paladin's journal entry was an example of "Moxie Syndrome." The player wasn't there for most of the session, and Useplanb said, "he's doing heroic stuff." Rikert's player took it from there, and just made things up. Well done to both, but it "didn't really happen" as far as the players who were actually there go.
I think you guys are really going to enjoy Rikert's next journal entry, considering how last night's session went. ;)
Action Report, 23 Neth (continued), Simon Roque reporting.
Note—This report will be uncharacteristically subjective and narrow focused due to the nature of the battle in progress.
1) The dragon mauled the top of the town garrison and breathed flame, nearly engulfing the building, then attacked the town hall on the other side of Church Street, and dropped from view into the street below. I drank an Enlarge Person potion and ran from the north gate toward the dragon’s suspected position.
2) As I crossed the market square at a dead run, I discovered why my old drill instructor had warned us over and over not to ever let our guard down in battle: the dragon ran into me at the south corner of the market square, hissed and bit me. I thought briefly that I might have a chance; Moxie hits harder than that. I missed my first swing, but the dragon jumped backwards and I saw an opening, striking it with my new frost-sword. It evidently didn’t like that much, since it sucked in a huge breath and breathed fire at me.
3) As I raised my shield, I had just enough time to wonder if I’d drunk the right potion when the flames rolled over me. Instead of being broiled alive, it kind of tickled (Note to self-RED protection from energy potion works against FIRE). I charged back in, and once again got bit for my trouble, missing my swing again.
4) This time, the dragon stepped in and hit me with everything: bite, claws, I think I even got smacked with a wing, for Abadar’s sake. OUCH. I ain’t ever been hit that hard before in my life. I took a step back and slashed a wonderful cut across that snake’s chin; I actually saw the blood freezing before it could drip.
5) The dragon said something then (don’t ask me what, I don’t talk dragon), reared up and bit me again. Lights out.
6) I came to just in time to catch the shadow of the dragon flying away, and Rikert leaning over grinning at me. Ain’t never seen that pretty boy smile before, so I know I done something monumentally stupid. “Get up, my stubborn friend,” he says, “the battle is not over yet!” I drank a healing potion and asked, “Did you get the number of the wagon that just ran me over?” Our armor was smoking so I figured the dragon had breathed on us again, and I stood shakily as the enlarge potion wore off. Rikert did his healing thing, and I drank another potion as we took stock. Dragon flying into the south part of town, garrison no longer burning, and at least one of the noble’s houses across the harbor was on fire. I saw a bunch of giant-flung rocks hit the town hall roof right down the street from us, so Rickert and I started jogging in that direction…
Note from player- I have never before in my gaming career had a character go one on one with a dragon for six rounds and not die. Best protection from energy potion EVER!
Action report, 23 Neth, Simon Roque reporting
1) Returned to Sandpoint in the early morning of 22 Neth. Went directly to lodging at Rusty Dragon Inn since we are expecting a big day.
2) After sunup, accompanied Xandu to the basement of the village glassworks and toured the “smugglers’ tunnels”; Xandu placed two magical traps to restrict access to the town from this area.
3) Met with Sheriff Hemlock and Mayor Deverin to request that the planking of the east bridge be removed in an attempt to use the natural obstacle of the river. Received Ok for the project, and assisted city guards in the task. Honest work for a change.
4) Retired early to a bath and room in the Pixie’s Kitten, did not get much rest. Went to the north gate and wall at midnight to check on the troops. Spent the night catnapping in the cathedral and circulating the wall.
5) Just before dawn, Davok and I noted giants approaching along the road north of town. Davok engaged with bow and Haytham with lightning, the giants returned fire with rocks. Many fewer rocks than I expected; most of the approaching giants had dispersed into the woods. Davok tried to eat a few of the rocks, unsuccessfully. Handed him a healing potion and advised that he make better use of cover.
6) Sighted dragon flying toward town along the coastal cliffs. Gate was failing under sustained assault from the giants, so I moved to reinforce as Rikert hustled up to the wall. He handed me potions as I advised him that Davok could use some healing; imbibed a Resist Energy and an Enlarge Person potion and took position against inside of gate.
7) Dragon appeared and blasted some trees with fire a short distance away; the sight was… unnerving (hope I took the right potion). Most of the guards not dead from the giant’s rocks quit the battle at that point.
8) Davok and Haytham finished off the giants at the gate, since the rocks stopped. Dragon landed heavily on the town garrison and engulfed it in flame (lightning was striking it now; Haytham still on the job). I gathered the remaining shreds of my courage and jogged toward it, as it blasted the town hall and dropped into the street. I find that I’m more than a little angry about the situation; I actually like this crappy little town…