Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Averlorn Campaign - The Island of Farault

Recaps from 10/15/2011 and 10/22/2011

After finishing up Dungeon Module G2 the Glacial Rift of the Frost Giant Jarl with our high level group, we decided to take a break from the high level game and start out with a new group of characters in a first level game.  This was mostly to get a fresh start since more than half of the players in the last group joined after we had reached around 5th level or so and so didn’t have an opportunity to start their low level characters from scratch.  So once characters were rolled up, we began the game in the gleaming City of Caursetti, Capital of the God King in the Kingdom of Raegeleth which lies in the north of the Archipelago along the western coast of the island of Rhaghaera.  We were all part of an order of monk like warriors called the Brotherhood of the Black Crowes and were basically indentured servants to the order for a period of 20 years.  The Brotherhood was in service to the God King and served as his elite troops in times of war and were based out of a fortress called Iron Keep in the Falconbridge neighborhood of Caursetti, one of the nicer neighborhoods in town.

Vizier Proldier who recruited and trained us, told us our training was complete and that our squad was to report to the office of Hroldave the Vizier for our first assignment.  So the group went over to Hroldave’s office and first he congratulated us on completing our training.  Then he told us the Brotherhood had an important mission for us.  We were to sail to a distant island called the Island of Farault.  There we were to locate a number of very large Thugee Rune stones which were said to have magical properties and make charcoal rubbings of the stones on large sheets of parchment, and bring the rubbings back to the Brotherhood.  He went on further to say that the reason for the mission was that our leader, a Thugee warrior named Grumlor, was sick and some even went as far as to say he was cursed by the gods.  There was said to be potent healing magics contained in the inscriptions on the rune stones which were thought to be able to heal him, and it was of the utmost importance that we return at once with the rubbings once obtained so that a cure could be effected.  He wished us good luck and made sure we were supplied and ready to go and sent us on our way. 

After a boat ride of a week or so, we finally arrived at the island of Farault to look for the stones.  The group consisted of Rollo, a dwarvish fighter/cleric, Sulethri a half orc fighter/cleric, Illundria a gnomish Illusionist and Fauna a human Ranger, Viktor a Thugee Fighter, Amul the Monk, and my character Finolthir the elf (Labyrinth Lord Elf class).  We put ashore in a skiff and noticed that something was following us in the water which looked almost humanoid in shape.  We knew there were Sea Devils about (Sahugin) and even heard tales of Mermen and Mermaids but none of us had ever seen any.  After the boat was pulled ashore they swam away down the shoreline away from us and out of site.  We trudged ashore and found a well worn path running down the center of the small island and chose to go right.  After a ways, we came across a very unusual scene – there was a large group of kobolds coaxing on several very large draft lizards that were pulling several very large rune stones that had been bound and moved onto skids for transport!  This was exactly what we had come to the island to seek and there they were before us.  Even stranger, the kobolds appeared to be lead by a Duergar warrior, one of the evil deep dwarves of legend! 

Seeing our prize at hand we didn’t hesitate and attacked the group in order to secure the stones!  Unfortunately, we lost initiative and the Duergar, who turned out to be a Druid, cast entangle and several of our group was held fast by the vines and plants that quickly sprang forth from the ground to entwine around their arms and legs!  Fortunately, after the initial setback, we finally managed to take down the bulk of the kobolds with a well timed sleep spell.  The Duergar proved to be another matter entirely – he was a stout warrior and led the remaining kobolds in a pitched battle.  A few of our number were hurt badly, and things were looking grim for a time, but the group finally managed to slay the leader and the remaining kobolds including most of the ones that were asleep.  We proceeded to loot the bodies and then took rubbings of the stones to take back to the ship.  We left one kobold alive to question and he told us there was a village down the other end of the path from the direction that we had just come from where we might find more of the rune stones.

We asked him where his group got the stones from initially and he indicated the direction that we were headed on the path, so we led our captive along the trail to the place where the rune stones were originally dug out of the ground.  It appeared that there were still a half dozen or so left but there were still several more, including the ones we had found along the path previously, that had been dug out and relocated recently as evidenced by the freshly shoveled soil.  So we proceeded to make rubbings of these stones and decided to start heading back to the ship since it was nearing the end of the day, since we didn’t want to spend the night on the island due to the dangers.  On the way back we encountered another group of kobolds and our prisoner was killed in the melee but we made it safely back to the ship.

The next session we picked up where we left off but with a slightly different set of characters.  This time we had Amul the Monk, Sulethri the half orc Fighter/Cleric, my Elf Finolthir and a different fighter but Rollo our Dwarven fighter/cleric, Illundria our gnomish illusionist, Viktor the Thugee fighter and our Ranger Fauna were not able to make it to shore due to an illness they had contracted on the island.  We soldiered on despite being short handed.

We returned to the island for the second time and made it to the crossroads of the two paths and went left down the trail this time, since that's where our now deceased Kobold captive said the village was.  This turned out to be a lie of course - we should have expected nothing less from the lying little Kobold worm.  What we found instead were four stone behive shaped huts which actually turned out to be burial structures (like the ones found in Ireland).  On the way there, we were attacked by seven small kobold zombies!  Horror gripped us as we realized that several were likely to be the very same kobolds we had slain only the day before!  We killed a couple and the cleric managed to turn the rest and we pressed on towards the "village" before they returned.  When we got there we found out that it wasn't really a village at all or at least a living village anyway.  We entered the first beehive/hut/tomb and shortly after we went in, the rest of the kobold zombies returned and we had a short but savage melee at the entrance to the place where we managed to slay the rest.  The tomb had been previously looted and contained no treasure.

We went to the second tomb and entered it and surprised a group of two kobolds and another Duergar who turned out to be a cleric this time.  In the chamber with them were some recently opened tombs and the remains of the dead scattered about.  They had clearly just looted the tomb and we managed to surprise them.  We concentrated our attacks on the Duergar since he was the obvious leader, and either Amul or Sulethri rolled a 20 and he was killed pretty quickly.  We then killed one of the kobolds and the other ran away.  Tony told us afterwards that he was a second level cleric and that we were incredibly lucky to have killed him so quickly but our other fighter was badly hurt.

So we went to the third beehive shaped stone tomb and entered and were greeted by a bizarre sight - there was a Dragon Ogre standing on the sarcophagus that was shouting and gesticulating wildly about something in Draconic.  The sarcophagi appeared to be the last missing stone since it had Thugee runes all over it!  Finolthir determined that dragon ogres are extra planar beings, so this thing had somehow been brought to this plane through a gate of some sort, probably by the same method as the Duergar from Nifelheim.  Finolthir attempted to speak to it in Draconic but it was just spouting off gibberish - something about a Loki worshipper (the Duergar) but it was mostly incompressible nonsense.  So we backed up and left the structure to figure out what to do, since it didn't attack us or appear to threaten us except with its insane tirade.  When we started discussing what to do, it came out and attacked us!  So we had another pitched battle and managed to kill it pretty quickly (I think Amul or Sulethri rolled yet another 20).

We gathered up its loot (it had some gold and a few magic items) and made our last rubbing of the rune stone and our mission was completed.  There was one last beehive to investigate, but we decided to quit while we were ahead since we had accomplished our mission and the fighter was hurt (Sulethri failed to cast a healing spell since his Wisdom score was so low he had to roll for spell failure when he cast it).  Rather than just head back at that point, we decided to go back to the island the next day to see what was in the last tomb hoping to find more treasure. 

When we arrived the next day we found it to be sealed meaning the kobolds and dwarves hadn't looted it yet.  We set about opening it up which required removing some rocks and entered.  Unfortunately, there were two ghouls inside (and no treasure!) and a desperate melee ensued.  We managed to kill one but the fighter/cleric failed his turn check and then was paralyzed.  We hurt the other badly but then the fighter was also paralyzed.  Things were looking grim so Finolthir stepped up to try and deliver the killing blow since Elves are immune to Ghoul paralysis, but unfortunately, they aren't immune to claw, claw, bite (three attacks) which resulted in six hit points of damage and he was down and awaiting the dreaded death and dismemberment roll (he only had three hit points to begin with).  So then Amul the Monk backed up into the light and fired his bow and missed.  The ghoul came at him but he retreated outdoors and it didn't follow, but went back to dine on one of its victims which turned out to be the Finolthir so he was now dead.  The other two were still alive though and the Monk went back to the door and in to try and kill it (it was either try or let all three die) and he rolled a 20 to hit it with his bow and managed to kill the last ghoul!

So it went down to the wire but three of the four characters managed to survive.  On the one hand, we probably shouldn't have gone back - our mission was accomplished with minimal casualties and we found some treasure to boot.  On the other hand, we were greedy and thought there would be more treasure there but there wasn't, and one character died but it could have been much worse.  Three twenties rolled by the group helped us to avert disaster in the end and the loss of one first level character was not the end of the world – I rolled up a new Elf wizard to replace him for the next session.


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