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    Canonfire :: View topic - The Keep on the Borderlands - Complete
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    The Keep on the Borderlands - Complete [ Previous  1, 2]
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    GreySage

    Joined: Oct 06, 2008
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    Sun Jan 20, 2013 11:58 am  

    Hmm. Personally, I don't see Tumak's and Ynohtna's friendship surviving this episode, but then it's not my game. rolleyes

    Oh, well, we'll wait to see what else happens now. Shocked
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    GreySage

    Joined: Jul 26, 2010
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    Sun Jan 20, 2013 4:53 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Hmm. Personally, I don't see Tumak's and Ynohtna's friendship surviving this episode, but then it's not my game. rolleyes

    Oh, well, we'll wait to see what else happens now. Shocked


    These two players are good friends and had lots of fun beating each other up without going so far as to kill one another. Evil Grin

    More adventure, and death, to come!

    SirXaris
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:32 am  

    one thing Sir Xaris forgot is how Tumak Copperbeard (at that time Tumak Nobeard) got his long scar across the left eye, all the way down his cheak. It was while I was hanging upside down and the cobolds were standing around me that the half dragon cobold sliced me with his rapier when the Driade tried to chase them away...

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Hmm. Personally, I don't see Tumak's and Ynohtna's friendship surviving this episode, but then it's not my game. rolleyes

    Oh, well, we'll wait to see what else happens now. Shocked


    haha, we are roommates and he is one of my best friends :D we sorted it out right away... however he does owe me 1000 gp :D
    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:11 pm  

    Welcome, Tumak! Thanks for joining the thread and Canonfire! Introduce yourself to the community properly over in the Welcome to Greyhawk forum so everyone knows we've got a new member. Smile

    Those Wretched Kobolds!

    Participating PC
    Tumak Nobeard - 3rd level male dwarf Fighter;
    Ynohtna Noswal - 3rd level male half-orc Ranger;
    Blump Butter - 4th level male gnome Cleric.

    While Ynohtna searched the merchant stalls for one who could acquire a magical Cloak of Resistance with which to propitiate his vengful love goddess, the dryad, Tumak was again summoned before Sir Tornamir. The castellan informed Tumak that it was going to be quite difficult to ascertain the truth of the incidents without being able to question Sir Bluto's men, who were vital witnesses, and asked him if he wanted to pursue the matter further. Tumak thanked him for his efforts, but explained that it had all been a misunderstanding and that the matter was settled as far as he was concerned. Ynohtna, lacking enough cash to pay for such an item was able to haggle a merchant into accepting a magical sword and a potion of Bull's Strength in exchange. The pleased merchant promised to return to the Keep within one month's time with the magical cloak Ynohtna had requested.

    Having settled all pressing business and restored their friendship, the two companions spent the remainder of the day enjoying fine food and drink at the tavern while regaling the locals with only slightly embellished, but highly edited, tales of their adventures in the region. Later in the evening, Blump, their clerical, gnomish friend, returned from visiting friends in the forested hills west of the Keep and joined them at the table. Together, they planned to venture forth again, come the morn, and see what a new day would bring.

    Leaving the Keep a little later than they had initially planned, the trio headed into the woods, less fearful of the dryad as they figured they had at least a month's worth of free pass while she waited for their gift to be delivered. They encountered a friendly woodsman here and there and chased off a few wild animals and humanoids, but eventually they found opponents worthy of their focus. In the underbrush ahead, they spied several small humanoids preparing an ambush for them. Tumak noted their green scaly hides and immediately called a challenge and charged. As Blump and Ynohtna followed more cautiously, the kobolds scattered in all directions, fleeing from the angry dwarf with the crescent blade attached to his arm (a scizor). Tumak spied one of the fleeing vermin with darker scales and recognized it as the black-scaled leader of the tribe. He turned on a burst of speed and bulled straight through the brush and branches in his attempt to catch the creature that had scarred his face and embarassed him into pretending to be a half-gnome, half-goblin. He had to kill the creature before it told anyone else about the incident.

    The kobold chieftain apparently realized that the dwarf was about to catch up to him, so turned and faced about to accept the charge with his whip and rapier. The dwarf's rage almost blinded him to anything but his prey, but his danger sense kicked in just in time to cause him to duck as he passed by a huge tree. Doing so prevented his head from being struck from his shoulders as a tree limb as thick as his thigh split the air above him. An ogre had somehow been recruited by the kobolds to help them ambush the party! Tumak, however, had no interest in the ogre, but continued on to spit the kobold leader on his scizor. Things looked bad for Tumak then as he faced off with the pint-sized half-dragon because the ogre advanced on him from behind and the five remaining kobolds tribesmen were circling back to engage him along with their chief. Fortunately, Tumak's friends were racing to assist him too.



    Fighting defensively until his friends could relieve some of the pressure, Tumak managed to avoid the pointy end of the miniature rapier and learned a rather elven-like dance step while avoiding the trip attempts of the whip all while ducking and blocking the powerful strokes of the ogre's club. Just in time, Ynohtna and Blump, on his war dog, arrived and distracted the ogre. The green-scaled kobolds also arrived and, seeing their chieftain in a fight for his life, dog-piled the doughty dwarf. Despite his encredible strength and the relative weakness of the kobolds, there were just too many of them to out-wrestle and he was bourne to the ground. During the struggle, the chieftain stepped up and delivered a coup-de-grace to the dwarf's chest. Fortunately for Tumak, the blow was weak or his armor was true, or his struggles deflected the blow, or a likely combination of the three and divine grace, and he survived... barely. Blump heard his cry of agony, however and hopped from his war dog's back and raced over to aid his dwarven comrade.

    As Ynohtna and the war dog sliced and tore the ogre's legs to eventually topple and destroy the beast, Blump dove into the midst of the pile with a spell of healing on his lips. Ignoring the minor blows he received from the entangled kobolds, he administered enough curative magic to Tumak to give him the strength to continue the fight. Between the two, they were able to throw off the pinning kobolds and catch the leader in a steel vice between scizor and axe. Seeing both their leader and their muscle felled by the adventurers, the few, pitiful remnants of the once vicious tribe fled as fast and as far as their short legs could carry them.

    Suffering many serious injuries and having finally put an end to one of their most hated rivals, the companions decided to call it a day and returned to the keep with a couple of impressive heads as trophies to add to their collection.

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Wed Jun 15, 2016 9:56 am; edited 3 times in total
    GreySage

    Joined: Oct 06, 2008
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:03 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    These two players are good friends and had lots of fun beating each other up without going so far as to kill one another.


    Tumak wrote:
    we are roommates and he is one of my best friends.


    Razz

    Just in case you two missed it the first time . . . Razz

    I was not talking about the PLAYERS! rolleyes

    Since you're obviously both "GEEKS" -- I already knew that about Xaris! Razz -- I'll use simple words:

    The relationship of the two imaginary CHARACTERS would not survive this disaster.

    It's called Role Playing, as opposed to what you two are doing, to wit: Roll Playing.

    "Hey! I rolled another natural 20!" Shocked rolleyes

    You two are not going to win any Oscars! Xaris, what AM I going to do with you? Laughing Evil Grin Laughing Evil Grin Laughing Evil Grin

    Tumak, Xaris knows I'm just having fun with the two of you, so don't take it personally! And . . .

    Welcome to Canonfire! Now, go to the "Welcome to Canonfire!" thread and introduce yourself! Wink Laughing

    Incidentally, if I may ask, did you two used to get your lunch money stolen at school? Razz

    Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing
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    GreySage

    Joined: Oct 06, 2008
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:16 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Tumak noted their green scaly hides and immediately called a challenge and charged . . . Tumak, however, had no interest in the ogre, but continued on to spit the kobold leader on his scizor . . .


    How does that go? Something about "looking before you leap?" Surprised

    Or is it "rushing in where angels fear to tread?" Shocked

    Well, it's one of those anyway! Evil Grin Laughing
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    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:55 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    I was not talking about the PLAYERS! rolleyes

    The relationship of the two imaginary CHARACTERS would not survive this disaster.


    I got it, but I've seen role-playing cause rifts between real-life friends, so wanted to point out that they were just having a good time in real-life by beating up each other's PCs. All's good. Smile

    And, in the next installment, a brand new player joins the group and suffers trial by fire as he learns just how deadly the Flanaess can be. Evil Grin

    SirXaris
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 4:52 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    I was not talking about the PLAYERS! rolleyes

    The relationship of the two imaginary CHARACTERS would not survive this disaster.


    I got it, but I've seen role-playing cause rifts between real-life friends, so wanted to point out that they were just having a good time in real-life by beating up each other's PCs. All's good. Smile

    And, in the next installment, a brand new player joins the group and suffers trial by fire as he learns just how deadly the Flanaess can be. Evil Grin

    SirXaris


    don't forget my fight with the assassin
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 4:56 pm  

    Tumak Copperbeard, the slayer of the Minotaur, the Protector of clerics, the Mighty Duelist, the Penis Collector, the Orc Hewer, the Destroyer of Ogres, the Cave Cleaner, etc.

    In his early days chopping some wood.



    EDIT: OK can some moderator change the size of the pic?
    GreySage

    Joined: Oct 06, 2008
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:25 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    I've seen role-playing cause rifts between real-life friends . . .


    A sad truth and that's why they will never win an Oscar. Sad

    The movie Twins? Arnold disses Sly. The movie Demolition Man? Sly disses Arnold. The movie The Expendables? They aren't friends, but competitors. Real life? Friends and business partners. Evil Grin

    Need to separate fiction from reality. In playing the game . . . you're making a movie. You're actors, nothing more.

    That's something everyone needs to bare in mind. Happy Cool

    Still enjoying following your game! Evil Grin
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    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:19 pm  

    The Mystery Cave

    Participating PCs
    Ynohtna Noswall - 3rd level male half-orc Ranger;
    Blump Butter - 4th level male gnome Cleric;
    Tumak Nobeard - 3rd level male dwarf Fighter;
    * New Player * Todd - 2nd level male human Cleric from the Thillonrian peninsula.

    The trio of adventuring companions answered a new summons from Abdiel, the head priest of Heironeous at the chapel in the keep and discovered that he had a rather impressive-looking guest to introduce to them. Todd was a giant of a man dressed in the armor and wielding the weapons of the barbarians of the cold northeast. Abdiel introduced Todd as a Cleric of Fharlanghn, who was the last known survivor of a group that had traveled across the northern reaches of the Flanaess. Having lost his companions (including his own brother), Todd hoped to join another group of reputable adventurers to continue his exploration of the world beyond his frozen homeland. The three would have happily accepted any competent and trustworthy adventurer into their ranks, but another Cleric was a special treat.

    Todd, the Ill-fated


    Abdiel also had a few newly brewed healing potions for the PCs for their continued donations and the four planned an early trek to the Caves of Chaos at dawn. When they arrived, they had a choice to make. Having scouted the area previously, they knew that there remained three unexplored caves in the ravine. They had seen bugbears entering and exiting from a copse of trees high on the ravine wall and had witnessed Iuzian Clerics and their undead bodyguards coming and going from the cave at the far end. They also knew of a lower cave within a tangled copse at the upper end of the ravine from which the Goblin Run emerged, but had never had an opportunity to see what might live within. After debating the advantages and disadvantages they might possess with respect to the known forces within the two upper caves, they settled for exploring the unknown.



    Upon entering, they noted that the natural cavern split left and right, with the the Goblin Run coming from the right-hand passage. After an extensive and heated argument rolleyes they wandered left. They discovered that the detritus of bones, excrement, sticks, and leaves covering the floors of the various natural caverns within also hid the ocassional coin of various value. Searching turned up random coinage, but the noise also attracted a nest of four giant rats. These fearless beasts were easily dispatched, but Ynohtna was given a short fright as the bite he suffered tingled with the effects of the disease-ridden saliva of the plague-carrying rodent. Fortunately, his knowledge of herbal remedies allowed him to stave off a serious infection.



    To be continued...

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Jun 14, 2016 8:31 pm; edited 3 times in total
    GreySage

    Joined: Oct 06, 2008
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:17 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Abdiel introduced Todd as a Cleric of Fharlanghn, who was the last known survivor of a group that had traveled across the northern reaches of the Flanaess . . . beyond his frozen homeland.


    Interestingly, the LGG doesn't show Fharlanghn being worshipped in Stonehold, or by the Frost, Snow,Ice Barbarians. That is to say, he doesn't receive any major worship there. An unlikely place to originate a Cleric of Fharlanghn.

    Where, exactly, is Todd from? Confused
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    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:49 pm  

    Tumak wrote:
    Tumak Copperbeard... the Penis Collector...
    In his early days chopping some wood.


    One AND the same, people, one and the same!!! Laughing

    -Lanthorn, the Laughing
    GreySage

    Joined: Jul 26, 2010
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:17 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    SirXaris wrote:
    Abdiel introduced Todd as a Cleric of Fharlanghn, who was the last known survivor of a group that had traveled across the northern reaches of the Flanaess . . . beyond his frozen homeland.


    Interestingly, the LGG doesn't show Fharlanghn being worshipped in Stonehold, or by the Frost, Snow,Ice Barbarians. That is to say, he doesn't receive any major worship there. An unlikely place to originate a Cleric of Fharlanghn.

    Where, exactly, is Todd from? Confused


    It was a quick choice on my part as the player hadn't time to choose a Greyhawk god he felt best represented his viking-like Cleric. I chose one for this write-up that explained the far-wanderings of this PC without limiting his more realistic choices for replacement PCs. Wink Cool

    The Mystery Cave continued

    Participating PCs
    Ynohtna Noswall - 3rd level male half-orc Ranger;
    Blump Butter - 4th level male gnome Cleric;
    Tumak Nobeard - 3rd level male dwarf Fighter;
    Todd - 2nd level male human Cleric from the Thillonrian peninsula.

    Having dispatched the rodent vermin with relative ease, the group continued to explore the numerous natural caverns within the system, searching for lost treasure while keeping an eye out for any other hungry surprises these uneven pits might hold. That was fortunate as Ynohtna noticed the ceiling in the far corner of a cavern he was searching begin to move and shift in time to jump clear as it fell to the floor in the spot he'd just vacated. Surprisingly, the blob reached out and grabbed him with an acidic tendril which held on with unnatural strength. Ynohtna struggled valiantly, but lost the fight to free himself from the grip of the greyish blob as his companions raced to his rescue. Blump grabbed ahold of the half-orc right through the viscous ooze while Tumak and Todd hurled flasks of oil into its midst. The Ranger sliced a hole with his dagger and the Cleric pulled with all his might and they were successful to a degree - Ynohtna emerged with only some tendrils still grasping him. The constriction and acid were taking their toll, however, and the ooze was grasping at Blump and his war dog as well. Lighting a torch from his pack (which hadn't been needed yet as the Clerics had been making liberal use of their Light orisons), Todd hurled it onto the slimy, grey exudation. It immediately erupted in flame, but refused to lessen its grasp.

    Tumak remained back from the oily conflagration and maintained a watchful vigil against the possible attack of other opponents from the two entrances/exits in the cavern and the very walls, ceiling and floor. Such caution was rewarded as he also just avoided having another ooze drop upon him. It did manage to violently grab ahold of him with an acidic pseudopod, however, much as Ynohtna had been attacked. The Ranger managed to free himself from the ooze's grip and ran to assist his dwarven friend while Todd continued to lend the strength of his sword-arm to the gnome and his dog. As the flames died on the ooze, the warriors noted that it seemed completely unharmed by the fire. They became a bit worried as the damage they dealt it seemed paltry, though more harmful than the flame. Once the oozes grappled a victim, they attempted to envelope it, but the adventurers fought back with muscle and steel and managed to avoid being completely engulfed again for a time. Winning completely free of the monstrosities, however, proved difficult.

    While struggling against the entanglement of the acidic ooze, Tumak could only watch in horror as only he noticed a furry hulk emerge from the tunnel they had not yet entered. It lumbered with unexpected speed up behind their new clerical ally and raised itself upon its back legs. This was an owlbear larger than any the experienced Fighter had yet seen! Before he could catch his breath to cry a warning, it grappled Todd in its clawed forelegs, crushed the life from him, and snapped his head off in one crunch of its razor-sharp beak! Blump turned to see the beast dragging Todd's body back into its cave, but could do nothing and his war dog had just been enveloped by the ooze! Tumak and Ynohtna were both caught by the other grey ooze and could do nothing but struggle against it's grip.



    Blump, though he gave it everything he had, couldn't pull his dog free of the ooze and when its body stopped its struggle, Blump chose to swallow his tears and run to the aid of the friends who still lived. The half-orc had been enveloped by the other ooze and though Blump and Tumak hacked at it until it dissolved into a pile of weak acid on the cavern floor, they were too late to save the life of their friend. Ynohtna, half-orc Ranger, and Todd, human Cleric of Farlangh, had fought their last fight. They knew they lacked the strength to face that giant owlbear, but they could take the half-orc's body with them and see it got a proper burial.

    Together, they fled the mystery cave to the relative safety of the ravine itself, but they did not stop there. They ran all the way to the pallisaded watchtower east of the road where the dozen soldiers stationed within threw open the gates and helped them inside. As the surviving pair rested and healed under the protective watch of the Keep's soldiers, they nearly despaired at the loss of so many of their compatriots and pets. While resting, a mounted patrol lead by none other than Figolwren, Sir Tornamir's elven advisor, stopped by for a rest on its way back from a weeklong survey of Lord Locks' demesne. Tumak had asked his clerical friend and Abdiel about the possibility of a spell that would regrow his beard, but they said such magic was not within their purview. Figolwren, however, admitted that he could concoct a spell or potion that could cause the dwarf's beard to grow back out again very quickly, but that it might take a few days. This brightened Tumak's mood considerably and, once healed by Blump's magic, the pair of demi-humans made their way back to the Keep. Their first stop was to see Abdiel to explain the loss of the Cleric of Farlangh.

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Oct 13, 2020 2:47 pm; edited 3 times in total
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 10:51 pm  

    Lanthorn wrote:
    Tumak wrote:
    Tumak Copperbeard... the Penis Collector...
    In his early days chopping some wood.


    One AND the same, people, one and the same!!! Laughing

    -Lanthorn, the Laughing


    didn't really understand this...but whatever... I got that nickname because I chop off the dicks of my enemies that are rarely seen in combat

    Tumak, the Whateverman
    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 10:51 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    It was a quick choice on my part as the player hadn't time to choose a Greyhawk god he felt best represented his viking-like Cleric.


    Given the limitations caused by his imprisonment, Vatun would have been an interesting choice. And the search for the Five Blades of Corusk would be a great reason for traveling the Flanaess. Happy

    I'm just saying . . . Wink
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    GreySage

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    Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:02 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    SirXaris wrote:
    It was a quick choice on my part as the player hadn't time to choose a Greyhawk god he felt best represented his viking-like Cleric.


    Given the limitations caused by his imprisonment, Vatun would have been an interesting choice. And the search for the Five Blades of Corusk would be a great reason for traveling the Flanaess. Happy

    I'm just saying . . . Wink


    Yes, had I thought of it, that would have been a good idea. But Vatun is a valid option for the player's replacement PC, who will be Todd's twin brother, so I wanted him to have that option as one more chance to differenciate the two PC. Wink I figured Farlangh wasn't really one the player would consider for his character.

    SirXaris
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    Tue Jan 22, 2013 8:14 pm  

    I have always loved owlbears as a creature. Never before DMed an enounter with a grey ooze (to my memory) in over 20 yrs of gaming, though. Confused I never knew they were so damned tough! I will have to refamiliarize myself with their stats (at least, in 1 and 2e).

    Sad loss to the party. Sorry fellas, but an owlbear's gotta eat, too. Wink

    -Lanthorn
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 3:46 pm  

    Lanthorn wrote:
    I have always loved owlbears as a creature. Never before DMed an enounter with a grey ooze (to my memory) in over 20 yrs of gaming, though. Confused I never knew they were so damned tough! I will have to refamiliarize myself with their stats (at least, in 1 and 2e).

    Sad loss to the party. Sorry fellas, but an owlbear's gotta eat, too. Wink

    -Lanthorn


    I almost TPK'd a party way back in college with that same combination. Wink Eight party members entered the mystery cave. One PC with two hit points remaining carried three unconscious and four PC dead bodies out to their tethered horses. Evil Grin

    SirXaris
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:47 pm  

    Interlude: The Swamp

    Participating PCs
    Ynohtna Noswal - 3rd level male half-orc Ranger;
    Blump Butter - 4th level male gnome Cleric;
    Tumak Nobeard - 3rd level male dwarf Fighter.

    Sitting in the tavern reminiscing about the adventures they had enjoyed with their half-orc friend before his death, Tumak and Blump related the tale of their daring foray into the swamp not that far agone. The tale began with sober sadness, but grew through the evening into one of drunken one-upmanship.

    As Tumak began the tale, Blump admitted having to be convinced to risk trudging into the mire along the banks of the Deepstil after the rumors he'd heard from the folk of the Keep. Challenging the bravery of his clan, Tumak and Ynohtna had coaxed the leary gnome to brave the sodden challenges within and the trio crept as stealthily as possible into the mist.

    Though the fog that shrouded the swamp was generally a natural occurance in the mornings and at certain times during the seasons, it was undoubtedly now quite unnatural as it remained perpetually throughout the day and night. Visibility was low and the trees still standing were dead or dying. The three adventurers slogged into the morass of swamp grass and water, hanging onto an ocassional tree. They had to keep moving or they would slowly sink into the muck and likely lose their footgear. Their first surprise was a half-dozen dead bodies that rose from the muck and water grasping at their legs and trying to pull them down to rather unpleasant deaths. These proved vulnerable to Blump's power to channel positive energy, though, so the encounter went successfully for the living. Shortly thereafter, they were accosted by over twice as many fleshless undead who crumbled to dust as Blump was prepared to repeat his divine feat more quickly this time. As they continued, they had to guard against poisonous snakes that swam stealthily toward them and more assaults by rotting corpses rising to assault them from the soggy vegetation they trod upon. It appeared to the group that this area was infested with the unliving. So far, it appeared that skeletons and zombies outnumbered the natural wildlife.

    That thought was interrupted by the sighting of a hooded head peering at them from behind the Y of a dead tree's split trunk. When they called a greeting, it disappeared. They trailed it, but again, it disappeared as they approached. Stopping to get their bearings, they spied a giant rodent, much like the ones they had battled in the kobold's warrens. Not pleased by the sight, Blump placed a rounded bullet in his sling and let it fly. His aim was true, but the bullet seemed to bounce of the rat's skull with minimal effect. It did, however, move out of sight behind some swamp grass on a tuft separated from the party by about 15 feet of shallow water. Watching the spot for the disease-ridden vermin to reappear, they saw instead a hooded man stand as if from a crouch. Without explanation, his hands were clawed and covered in course black hair while his face was that of a giant rat!



    "Changling! Shapeshifter!" they called as blades were drawn to confront the demon advancing on their position. With a sneer upon its face, the wererat strode confidently through the two-foot deep swamp while drawing a rapier and a long dagger from its belt. The party knew they could not outrun an opponent in the marshy wilderness of these baleful bogs, so stood their ground and met the fiend toe-to-toe. The blades of Blump and Tumak sliced through the creature's clothing, but drew no blood from its flesh. It's blades, however, dealt the trio several piercing wounds before Ynohtna's falchion opened the cocky beast's midsection deeply enough to allow it's entrails to peek through. Shocked at this developement, the ratman turned and dove into the swamp. Changing to rat form in midair before the wondering eyes of the demi-humans, it fled before the magical power of the Ranger's two-handed scimitar. Realizing their potential peril, the trio wisely decided to make their way back to the more solid ground of the Keep. Once back on terra firma, they determined not to assail the denizens of the swamp again with out more assistance and a plan of retreat.

    The tale ended with mugs raised round about in honor of the bravery of the half-orc Ranger who had saved the lives of his two friends that day.

    Shananana (satyr) and Rock Hammerhand Boulderbeard (goliath) enjoy the tales of a half-orc ranger (Ynohtna) during their stay at the Keep.


    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Sat Aug 29, 2020 12:31 pm; edited 5 times in total
    GreySage

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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:04 pm  

    Hmm. These three are not as stupid as they . . . look? Evil Grin

    The Were-rat shall have to rethink its strategy! Cool
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    Last edited by Mystic-Scholar on Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:14 pm; edited 1 time in total
    GreySage

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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:40 pm  

    Assassin!

    Participating PCs
    Blump Butter - 4th level gnome Cleric;
    Tumak Nobeard - 4th level dwarf Fighter.

    The next day, the two surviving members of the latest assault on the Caves of Chaos received a summons from Abdiel. Hurriedly, they dressed and made their way through the busy morning streets of the Keep to the chapel of Heironeous. There, they had left the body of their Ranger friend with the good priests for proper interment. An acolyte led them into a side room for a private audience with Head Priest Abdiel who attended to them without delay.

    With a hopeful expression upon his face, he began the explanation of the reason for his summons by offering to Raise Ynohtna from the dead! This, of course, got the pair's attention and immediately dispelled the gloom that hung about them. Abdiel continued the explanation thusly: Years ago, when Lord Locks established the Keep and appointed Abdiel to preside over the chapel within, Abdiel's superior in Perrenland had gifted the young priest with a scroll with a single Raise Dead spell inscribed upon it. This spell was to be used only in extreme emergency (likely for Lord Locks or himself, it was expected). But, recent divinations have warned Abdiel that his own life is in great danger and that the best chance of avoiding death at the hands of an assassin was for one of these two brave demi-humans to find the evil one, issue a divine challenge, and defeat him in fair combat before all. If they fail, Abdiel was certain that he would be slain and one of his subordinates, if they survived, would have to use the scroll on him anyway, so he would be happy to use it on their friend if they would defeat the assassin for him.

    The first task would be to find him. All Abdiel could provide by way of description was that the assassin would be from the west, that he would bear a vicious scar, and that he would speak not a word. He also explained that the challenge must be public so that the glory of Heironeous would shine upon them and assure his champion's victory. So, they searched the marketplace, the inn, the smithy, the stables, and the various merchantile establishments in the Keep unsuccessfully until finally arriving at the tavern.

    As their eyes adjusted to the dimmer lighting, they noted several off-duty soldiers of the Keep, a few common patrons, and a darkly cloaked individual eating a bowl of soup in a corner booth. Being the only Baklunish individual they had not stopped to question among the many in the Keep that day, they approached his booth, introduced themselves, and asked him his business in the Keep. The cloaked figure ignored them. Irked, Tumak stepped forward and pulled the bowl away from the eating man. Before depositing the bowl and its contents anywhere else, he froze in place as he felt a piercing pressure between his legs. Carefully stealing a glance downward he noted that the cloaked man's arm ended in a pointy dagger which was pressing firmly upward into his crotch. Changing his mind, the dwarf returned the bowl to its proper place and took a slow step back.

    The silent man was not cooperative, however, and increased the pressure exerted with the blade instead of lessening it and Tumak felt a trickle of blood run down his leg from a very delicate portion of his body in that region. As he did, he cocked his head enough that Tumak caught sight of an old tear on his throat that had been hidden by the cloak. Infuriated, the stocky Fighter called for the attention of the room and declared the cloaked figure to be an assassin sent from the west to murder the righteous and beloved priest of Heironeous, Abdiel. He then issued a public challenge to be attended in half an hour before the chapel itself. The cloaked man nodded his acceptance while continuing to enjoy his soup and an off-duty Keep sergeant verified that the challenge was legal, but that the man had committed no crime anyone was aware of, so he couldn't just be arrested on the spot.

    Tumak Nobeard


    To be continued...

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Jan 21, 2020 11:14 am; edited 4 times in total
    GreySage

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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:54 pm  

    And so it is that coincidence once again saves Ynohtna Noswal! Shocked

    Well, this time, anyway! Wink

    Cleric of Vatun to the Cleric of Farlangh: "I rise . . . you fall!" Evil Grin

    I knew an employee of TPK Games would find a way to introduce a Cleric of Vatun into the game! Evil Grin

    Laughing Laughing Laughing

    Not to mention the fact that you have poor, 4th level Tumak facing off against a 10th level assassin! Wink
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    GreySage

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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:44 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Not to mention the fact that you have poor, 4th level Tumak facing off against a 10th level assassin! Wink


    Not quite. Cool

    Several of my players showed up and wanted to game while I was in the middle of typing up the bit about the assassin. Can you believe they are that enthusiastic about dying again? Evil Grin

    Now, back to the story. Smile

    SirXaris
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:16 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Can you believe they are that enthusiastic about dying again?


    Wow! A group of Sadists and Masochists at the same gaming table! Shocked Evil Grin

    Mwahahahahahahahaha!
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    GreySage

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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:51 pm  

    Assassin! continued...

    Participating PCs
    Blump Butter - 4th level gnome Cleric;
    Tumak Nobeard - 4th level dwarf Fighter.

    While a crowd gathered to accompany Tumak and the sergeant to the dueling grounds before the inner barbican, Blump remained behind in the tavern to keep an eye on the assassin. The other off-duty soldiers were doing the same thing, but the assassin seemed to be interested only in finishing his dinner. The sergeant went over the rules of a legal duel with Tumak to be sure he understood them as enforced in this part of the Flanaess. Basically, having issued the challenge, Tumak had the right to choose whether the fight would be to first blood, second blood, or death. Once the duel begins, anything goes as long as neither combatant tries to flee. Flight (i.e. any definition of the word) is cheating and would mean automatic loss. It is also unlawful for any other party to assist either combatant. Suddenly, Tumak had a clearer idea of why one of Abdiel's acolytes had handed him a potion of Bull's Strength and a potion of Bear's Endurance as a free gift when they left the chapel on their search for the assassin.

    When the assassin finished his soup, he casually rose and made his way to the dueling grounds. Blump watched carefully for any indication that he added a potion to his soup or cast a spell from a scroll, so he was not surprised when he caught the darkly cloaked rogue surreptiously down a couple of potions of his own during the walk over. When the challengee arrived at the indicated time and place, Tumak repeated his challenge for the benefit of the crowd decreeing that Heironeous demanded that the would-be assassin's guilt be demonstrated now at this appointed time and place and that second blood (a most dangerous blow as demonstrated by reducing an opponent to zero hit points) would prove the rightness of his challenge. As the accused stood his ground in the center of a circle of onlookers, a scrawny, bespectacled half-elf stepped forward and addressed the crowd on the assassin's behalf.

    "Sheep of the Keep! You who huddle beneath the illusory protection of the flumph who calls himself Lord Locks! Behold, the Executioner of Pashas' Pashions, Passer of Divine Winds, Plague of the West, Bane of the East, the Utterly Unvulnerable, Ekbir Gionni Pomarj! He has never failed to slay any challenger and will cut the neck of this puny pile of dirt along with the stubble that remains of his pitifully juvenile beard!"

    Incensed at the affront to his friend, Blump stood forth and extolled the virtues of the valiant Dwarf.

    "Behold, my friends, the Tamer of the Wilds, the Mutilator of Minotaurs, Oviraptor of Orcs, Grinder of Goblin Bones, who puts the Kibosh on Kobolds, and gnashes gnolls for breakfast: Tumak Wannabe Copperbeard!"

    At this, the crowd went wild and the dwarf downed his potions before donning his scizore and hefting his shield. Meanwhile, Ekbir Gionni Pomarj opened his cloak to reveal a falchion upon his back and a coiled spiked chain on his hip. It was the chain that he drew forth and began to twirl easily and expertly as he sized his opponent up. The two then closed quickly and fell to blows. First blood went to the challenger as he ducked the strike of the barbed chain and slashed the assassin's arm with his gladiatorial blade. The Ekbirian...

    Here the half-elf interjected to point out that the assassin originally hailed from Sterich as Gionni Cougar, but dropped his surname when his aliases were added because he thought it was too pretentious.

    Ahem.

    The assassin rolleyes spun around Tumak's shield and struck him a staggering blow in the back of the head with his unconventional weapon. Blood had been spilled on both sides and it did not end there. Gionni Pomarj deftly danced around to avoid Tumak's advance, striking at his feet to trip him and managing to disarm him once. The dwarf's powerful stance, however, prevented his opponent from knocking him prone and finally Tumak managed to stamp on the end of the chain and nearly jerk the assassin to the ground. Instead, Gionni Cougar used his forward momentum to bull rush the surprised dwarf and knock him back a few feet, freeing his weapon from beneath the dwarf's boot. Just then, with his back quite close to the encircling crowd, Tumak heard Blump shout, "Behind you, Tumak!" Spinning on his heel, the Fighter prepared for an attack from an unexpected ally of the coniving cheat, but faced only startled commoners and soldiers, none with any apparent weapon in hand. Before the dwarf could come to an understanding of what had just happened, the ventriliquist/assassin snapped his spiked chain around Tumak's neck. The sneak attack had come from behind afterall.



    As the chain was pulled taught, the dwarf rolled backward with the momentum and allowed his body to fall into a backward somersault. Pushing off the ground with his arms, he flung his legs upward and into the chest of the assassin who had stepped forward to plunge a dagger into the dwarf's chest. The assassin flew backward, losing his grip on the chain and crashed to the ground. The dwarf unwrapped the chain from his neck while advancing on his prone opponent, but the silent assassin spun to his feet while drawing his falchion and met him again in head-to-head combat. This time around, however, the dwarf was unwilling to waste any more time. He took the rogue's first strike hard upon his shield and bulled his way forward, overrunning the assassin and kicking the sword from his prone fingers. Tumak took a sharp stab to the calf from another quickly drawn dagger, but used the weight of his falling body to drive the blade of his scizore into Gionni's side as he did. A look of surprised defeat was the last thing Tumak saw in the assassin's eyes before they closed in unconsciousness.

    Rising with difficulty on one leg, Tumak the Victorious was helped from the site by Blump and Abdiel himself. Blue-liveried soldiers carried Ekbir Gionni Pomarj to the dungeon after a Heironean acolyte administered minor healing to prevent his death. Abdiel spent the next day returning Ynohtna to life while Blump went in search of a Highfolk merchant that could replace his lost riding war dog and Tumak (after accepting lots of healing from Blump and the Heironean acolytes) accepted an invitation from Figolwren to see about repairing the damage done to his once-proud copper-colored facial adornment.

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Oct 13, 2020 4:35 pm; edited 9 times in total
    GreySage

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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 8:33 am  

    How in the heck did a 3' tall Dwarf kick a sword out of a 6' tall Assassin's hand? Shocked Razz Evil Grin

    Okay, I'm going to ask because, expect for a Google which offered a Pokemon "scizor," I have no idea what a "scizor" is! Confused

    Waiting . . .

    Laughing
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    GreySage

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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 9:49 am  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    How in the heck did a 3' tall Dwarf kick a sword out of a 6' tall Assassin's hand? Shocked Razz Evil Grin


    The dwarf bowled into the assassin and knocked him down. Technically, it was a bullrush, but I called it an overrun. When the assassin landed on his back, Tumak kicked the sword from his hand. And, dwarves are four feet tall. Smile

    Quote:
    Okay, I'm going to ask because, expect for a Google which offered a Pokemon "scizor," I have no idea what a "scizor" is! Confused

    Waiting . . .

    Laughing


    Yeah, I had no idea either and had to look it up when my player said he wanted to use one. It's a gladiator weapon that has a cuff that fits over the wielder's forearm and a half-moon shaped blade sticking out the other end. It is a slashing weapon.

    SirXaris
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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:08 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    The dwarf bowled into the assassin and knocked him down. When the assassin landed on his back, Tumak kicked the sword from his hand.


    Ah ha! Didn't notice the 'knocked him on his back' part. Wink

    SirXaris wrote:
    And, dwarves are four feet tall.


    Only if their mother is an . . . Elf! Razz Evil Grin

    SirXaris wrote:
    Yeah, I had no idea either and had to look it up . . . It's a gladiator weapon . . .


    Found it! But only after I spelled it correctly! Razz

    "Scizore" . . . at least, for Goggle anyway. A slashing and punching weapon. Interesting choice. Cool Laughing
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    GreySage

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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:30 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Found it! But only after I spelled it correctly! Razz

    "Scizore" . . . at least, for Goggle anyway. A slashing and punching weapon. Interesting choice. Cool Laughing


    Ah! How embarassing! I did misspell it. Sad

    I've gone back and edited it above so that no one will know. Sshh! Cool

    SirXaris
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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:50 pm  

    Can't transport the image . . . poor computer skills. But, for your readers!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scissor_%28gladiator_type%29

    Tada! And yes, this site uses yet another spelling! Laughing Laughing Laughing

    See also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arbelas

    It seems the weapon was mostly used for fighting against the net, the retiarii. Makes one wonder how effective it would be against more "standard" weapons . . . in reality. Wink

    But of course this is a fantasy world! Laughing Laughing Laughing
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    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Sat Jan 26, 2013 11:45 pm  

    Sir Xaris,

    Glad, I was able to catch up on your tread. Blump Butter! Got to say the world of Oerth has some names that had to be ridiculed by all present during his or hers childhood.

    Its Blump, Its Blump, Its Blump, Its in my head!

    Then Butter, maybe he churns really well.

    Later

    Argon
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    Sun Jan 27, 2013 4:42 pm  

    Argon wrote:
    Sir Xaris,

    Glad, I was able to catch up on your tread. Blump Butter! Got to say the world of Oerth has some names that had to be ridiculed by all present during his or hers childhood.

    Its Blump, Its Blump, Its Blump, Its in my head!

    Then Butter, maybe he churns really well.

    Later

    Argon


    Parkay!

    Hehehehehehehehe!
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    GreySage

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    Sun Jan 27, 2013 11:28 pm  

    Bugbears. Not owlbears!

    Participating PCs
    Blump Butter - 4th level male gnome Cleric;
    Tumak Copperbeard - 4th level male dwarf Fighter;
    Ynohtna Noswal - 4th level male half-orc Ranger.

    Disappointed that only the three of them were available to go adventuring at this time, the three demi-human friends argued about whether they should return to face the over-sized owlbear in the ooze cave or make a foray against the cave of the bugbears. It was unanimously agreed that the cave of the Iuzian Clerics and their undead minions was to be avoided until they could muster additional forces with which to make a strong assault. Eventually, Tumak gave in and agreed to try their luck against a tribe of bugbears. They had only fought real ones in small groups of three or less and those hadn't presented these three with a serious threat to their lives. Being eaten by the giant owlbear, however, was a very real possibility in everyone's mind.

    Traveling east along the road proved quite adventurous this day as they were attacked by two different groups of orcs and one band of over two dozen goblins. They did manage to defeat all three ambushes and felt enormous relief when they failed to recognize the colors being flown by the group of a dozen mounted men-at-arms and knights who caught up to them from the direction of the keep. The one group they did not want to encounter on an isolated portion of the road was Sir Bluto and his cronies. This group, however, was friendly to Lord Locks and was making their way from Perrenland to join him in the east in his fight against the forces of the Old One. The party wished them well and continued until arriving at the pallisaded fort just east of the ravine holding the Caves of Chaos. Resting just long enough to chat with the ten mercenaries paid by the castellan to hold it in the name of the Keep, they then crossed the road due west and made their way to the copse of trees hiding the cave of the bugbears.

    The warriors were not fooled by the welcome signs posted outside the entrance in various languages as they had been warned that the hobgoblins had attempted a similar ruse. Sneaking in, Tumak detected no stonework traps, so advanced to the T intersection which he determined by now must be a common theme among the original architects of the Caves. Glancing left and right, he noted the dancing light of a fire around the corner in a room a short distance down the hallway and a staircase leading up. To the right, he noted another short tunnel ending in another T intersection. Blump then convinced the others to retreat back out and cut some small trees in the thicket to use as longspears.

    "How long?" asked Tumak.
    "Twice as long as a man!" Blump replied.
    "Some men are longer than others," noted Ynohtna.
    "I see yer mother's been telling ye stories about me again!" the gnome retorted.

    While the friends were thus engaged in banter and cutting longspears, Tumak spied a bugbear attempting to sneak out the entrance to the cave behind them. Crying a warning to his friends, he advanced to engage the brute. Blump and Ynohtna quickly followed, but so, too, did two more bugbears. The dwarf was anxious to protect his warpony that he had tethered near the cavern entrance. He had spent a pretty penny on that piece of horseflesh and saddle, even going so far as to pay for chainmail barding to protect it. The gnome and half-orc summoned their war dogs as well and the fight quickly turned against the goblinoids as one fell to their flanking foes. One retreated back into the cave entrance, but the other was cut off and cut down by the Ranger and two of the dogs. Tumak followed on the heals of the retreating bugbear as it called for aid. Blump, however, managed to convince his dwarven friend that barreling into the unknown in such a situation would likely end in a trap or an ambush. Tumak hesitated long enough for the Cleric to heal him. Unfortunately, he did not notice the bugbear chieftain and other bugbears sneaking up on him from the other direction. Taking a surprisingly well-placed strike to the ribs from a slash out of the darkness, the dwarf hustled the gnome before him and raced back into the dim light of the thicket.

    Outside again, they were joined by the Ranger and the three war dogs. They made a crescent line to receive the over-sized goblins as they emerged from the darkness of their lair. The first two charged straight for the line, but the chieftain found a small hole and stepped through to flank the dwarf. Tumak was a bit disconcerted as this large bugbear seemed to blend exceptionally well with the shadowy forest around them. As the battle raged, more and more bugbears emerged to join the fray until about a dozen had shown themselves. They had the numbers to outflank the adventurers and they proved quite capable of striking where it counted, so the three companions elected to Run!



    [I gave each of the regular 3 HD bugbears a single level of Rogue (Thief). Thus, they all had nicely high Stealth scores and the Sneak Attack ability. Anytime a PC got flanked, the bugbears' hits caused an additional 1d6 hit points of damage. This quickly took a serious toll on their reserves once they began to be encircled.]

    Blump ran first, but was not very fast. Ynohtna and the dogs outdistanced the gnome quickly. Tumak followed the gnome, but was cut down from behind when the faster bugbears caught up to them. As the Cleric was caught, he commanded his war dog to stay with the Ranger, but the Ranger sent his own war dogs back to protect his gnomish friend while he continued to run. Blump successfully cast Sanctuary, but two of the bugbears directly behind him managed to maintain their focus on running him down. Fortunately, one of them was intercepted by a wardog, so only one continued to attack him while others circled him and the war dogs to continue their pursuit of the half-orc. Two of the bugbears stopped to grab the unconscious and bleeding dwarf and carry him back to their cave.

    Desparate to prevent another comrade-in-arms from being captured and likely eaten by the humanoids, Blump then cast his daily Invisibility spell (a special gift from his trickster deity) and successfully eluded the one bugbear intent on crushing his skull. He then channeled positive energy and healed both of Ynohtna's wardogs, himself, Tumak and a few of the bugbears that had taken damage. This kept the dogs fighting, distracting several of the goblinoids, and healed the dwarf sufficiently to bring him back to consciousness. Recognizing his current predicament, Tumak surprised the bugbears bearing him and squirmed from their grasp. Dropping to his feet, he fled to the cave mouth where his warpony was tethered. As he deftly sliced the tether holding the war pony and vaulted into the saddle, the invisible Blump channeled healing energy again to heal some of the wounds he had suffered in the attempt. The war pony was able to out-distance the bugbears and Tumak disappeared out of the thicket, down the ravine, and eastward to the pallisaded fort.

    Slipping away invisibly, Blump followed the bugbears chasing his Ranger friend. Ynohtna and Blump's war dog ran to ground when they caught an opportunity to do so out of sight of their pursuers. The bugbears went into stealth mode and continued their search. The Ranger lost sight of them as well and waited a brief period before making a break for it. The bugbears caught sight of him and the chase was on again. The Ranger had to curve around to avoid running straight through the line of pursuit, which had nearly surrounded him when he'd been hiding and one of the bugbears caught the wardog, though it was unable to stop it. Ynohtna outlasted the humanoids in the 600 yard race through briar and thicket to the pallisaded fort east of the ravine, arriving shortly after Tumak upon his war pony. Blump, however, had to travel slowly in order to avoid giving away his invisible position. Unfortunately, his prankster nature took over when he spied one bugbear nearly attack another when it mistook its mate for a sneaky enemy. Garl Glittergold's Cleric tried to throw his voice and insult one of the bugbears, but he had no skill in the trick and only managed to alert the two to his position. He was lucky in managing to avoid being caught by them, however, and wisely elected to avoid any more bugbears he came across while making his way to the fort.

    Resting under the protection of the wooden walls and mercenaries, Blump used the remainder of his healing abilities to bring the party up to speed. They then settled in for the night on the second floor of the central tower. Half of the mercenaries patrolled the wall-tops while the other half, their two war dogs, and Blump's war dog slept on the first floor. When a sentry called the alarm as a dozen bugbears emerged from the woods surrounding the fort, the dwarf reflected on the fortune that brought the Ring of Sustenance into his possession. Because of its powerful magic, he required only two hours of sleep each night and had donned his armor already. The Ranger was trained to sleep in his armor, but Blump and the mercenaries were not. Blump had slept in his armor anyway and was fatigued during the fight as a result, but the five sleeping mercenaries simply grabbed their tower shields and ran to man the walls.

    The bugbears had failed in their attempt to sneak into the fort, but attempted to climb the walls en masse. That was no mean feat, though, with defenders at the top stabbing at them with spears. The most fearful twist, however, was the appearance of the bugbear leader mounted upon the very owlbear that had slain, and presumably eaten, their clerical friend from the far northeast! Shocked Raising up on its hind legs, it brought its forelimbs down upon the wooden gates of the fort, cracking the wooden brace. While the Ranger climbed to the top of the tower to target climbing bugbears as they presented their heads above the parapet, the Fighter and Cleric raced down the ladder and out to the front gates. There, they fortified the brace with a metal chain from the Ranger's backpack. Tumak and Blump then climbed to the wall-walk and joined the guards there while the three war dogs bristled and barked at the beast on the other side of the gates.



    This battle lasted some time and over half of the mercenaries fell to the bugbear assault, but the fortified gates withstood the owlbear's assault (suffering 89 hp damage out of 100). Nine of the bugbears were brought down before the leader called off the attack and slunk back into the woods. Highlights of the battle included the dwarf running along the catwalk and jumping from it onto the back of a bugbear that had made it down to the courtyard, brining it down with a powerful chop at the end of that leaping charge. He even managed to land on his feet. Cool Blump suffered a couple of hits from the magically returning handaxe hurled by the chieftain, but caused him to miss its return on one ocassion with a well-placed bullet from his sling. This resulted in the bugbear leader ignominiously dismounting the owlbear and running into the road to get his handaxe before returning to remount and rejoin the battle. One of the bugbears managed to get into the courtyard alive and slam its morningstar into the chain fortifiying the gates. This critical hit caused more damage in a single stroke than had any of the owlbear's hits. Tumak and the dogs interfered with his continued attempts, however, and prevented the owlbear from gaining entrance. The bugbear chieftain did leave his mount and scale the walls himself, but, seeing his force decimated, called a retreat and missed that opportunity to confront the dwarf scizore to scizore again. Tumak did notice the familiar weapon protruding from the bugbear's right arm, however, and stored that information away for a future encounter.



    Having sent their bugbear assailants packing, the heroes patched up the wounded mercenaries and managed to prevent any from dying. They manned the watch the remainder of the night and used their healing spells, powers, and potions on themselves and the mercenaries come the morn. While recouperating, Ynohtna pondered his next encounter with the dryad. He had received the Cloak of Resistance from the dwarven merchant (Thardfer) who returned from his successful trip to Perrenland on the half-orc's behalf. He was going to have to search her out again to keep his promise, but at what risk? Was she likely to keep the spirit of their bargain or might she try to take advantage of him again? Best plan it out carefully, he reasoned.

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Jan 21, 2020 11:27 am; edited 9 times in total
    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 28, 2013 8:02 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    "How long?" asked Tumak.
    "Twice as long as a man!" Blump replied.
    "Some men are longer than others," noted Ynohtna.
    "I see yer mother's been telling ye stories about me again!" the gnome retorted.


    Okay, Blump "Parkay," sometimes . . . it's just cheesy! Laughing
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    Mon Jan 28, 2013 5:00 pm  

    I gotta admit that I snickered at that little exchange, too. Seems I've played a gnome in the exact same lewd way. Happy

    So...just gotta ask...how does one train an owlbear to use as a mount? Wondering how the bugbears pulled this off, assuming no magic, unless they somehow reared the thing since it was a fledgling. Hmmm...

    Also have to admit that I didn't see a siege coming! Interesting turn of events.

    Do bugbears have the same inherent stealth ability in 3e as they do in 1 and 2e? I think in those editions they have something like a 1-3 out of d6 chance to surprise...

    -Lanthorn
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    Mon Jan 28, 2013 6:29 pm  

    Lanthorn wrote:
    So...just gotta ask...how does one train an owlbear to use as a mount? Wondering how the bugbears pulled this off, assuming no magic, unless they somehow reared the thing since it was a fledgling. Hmmm...


    There are several versions of owlbears here. I got the idea from the siege owlbear, but didn't want such a powerful opponent. I had increased this one to 7 HD since the party was third and fourth level. Since it is size Large, I figured it was big enough to be ridden by a size Medium bugbear and that was just the thing to set the bugbears apart from the other humanoids in the caves. Yes, I assumed the bugbear chieftain had raised and trained the owlbear from its infancy.

    http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/monster-listings/magical-beasts/owlbear

    Quote:
    Also have to admit that I didn't see a siege coming! Interesting turn of events.


    I decided that the bugbears weren't ones to sit back and wait for the adventurers to return, so they planned a midnight assault - after the PCs had used all their healing magic for the day. Evil Grin

    Quote:
    Do bugbears have the same inherent stealth ability in 3e as they do in 1 and 2e? I think in those editions they have something like a 1-3 out of d6 chance to surprise...


    http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/monster-listings/humanoids/bugbear

    Yes, but I decided to expand upon that by giving this group a single level of Rogue as they are some of Iuz's special forces behind enemy lines.

    SirXaris
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    Mon Jan 28, 2013 6:35 pm  

    Oops! Double post. Embarassed

    SX


    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:13 pm  

    Sir Xaris,

    Were you interpreting a Xerox? Wink

    I think Blump Butter should have access to the Grease spell. What a racially tolerate group a gnome and dwarf working with a half-orc. Never liked the term half-orc. Which half is orc? Razz

    Nice siege I hate adventures were the baddies are just sitting around waiting for someone to come by.

    Later

    Argon
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    Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:28 am  

    Argon wrote:
    Never liked the term half-orc. Which half is orc?


    The reproductive organ? Confused


    Half-human and proud of it!

    Razz

    Mwahahahahahahahahaha!
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    Tue Jan 29, 2013 11:21 am  

    Argon wrote:
    Sir Xaris,

    Were you interpreting a Xerox? Wink


    I'm afraid that one went right over my head. Confused

    And, I forgot an important portion of the initial fight with the bugbears, which I'll edit into the story above, but add here so you don't have to read through the whole post above to find. (The edited parts are in italics.)

    Bugbears... edit

    Blump ran first, but was not very fast. Ynohtna and the dogs outdistanced the gnome quickly. Tumak followed the gnome, but was cut down from behind when the faster bugbears caught up to them. As the Cleric was caught, he commanded his war dog to stay with the Ranger, but the Ranger sent his own war dogs back to protect his gnomish friend while he continued to run. Blump successfully cast Sanctuary, but two of the bugbears directly behind him managed to maintain their focus on running him down. Fortunately, one of them was intercepted by a wardog, so only one continued to attack him while others circled him and the war dogs to continue their pursuit of the half-orc. Two of the bugbears stopped to grab the unconscious and bleeding dwarf and carry him back to their cave.

    Desparate to prevent another comrade-in-arms from being captured and likely eaten by the humanoids, Blump then cast his daily Invisibility spell (a special gift from his trickster deity) and successfully eluded the one bugbear intent on crushing his skull. He then channeled positive energy and healed both of Ynohtna's wardogs, himself, Tumak and a few of the bugbears that had taken damage. This kept the dogs fighting, distracting several of the goblinoids, and healed the dwarf sufficiently to bring him back to consciousness. Recognizing his current predicament, Tumak surprised the bugbears bearing him and squirmed from their grasp. Dropping to his feet, he fled to the cave mouth where his warpony was tethered. As he deftly sliced the tether holding the war pony and vaulted into the saddle, the invisible Blump channeled healing energy again to heal some of the wounds he had suffered in the attempt. The war pony was able to out-distance the bugbears and Tumak disappeared out of the thicket, down the ravine, and eastward to the pallisaded fort.

    SirXaris
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    Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:46 pm  

    Sir Xaris,

    Nice update. Glad you posted the changes here.

    The Xerox part had to do with a double post! Wink

    Later

    Argon
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    Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:39 pm  

    Argon wrote:
    The Xerox part had to do with a double post! Wink


    Doh! I didn't even notice that until you explained it. Razz

    SirXaris
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    Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:44 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Argon wrote:
    The Xerox part had to do with a double post! Wink


    Doh! I didn't even notice that until you explained it. Razz

    SirXaris


    I'm subtle like that. Wink
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    Thu Jan 31, 2013 8:13 am  

    Argon wrote:
    I'm subtle like that. Wink


    Or Xaris is "slow on the uptake!"


    Mwahahahahahahahaha!
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    Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:25 pm  

    we gamed tonight...and boy did we do good... I just trained a huge spider to be my pet and added another ornament beside the Minotaur skull to my appearance :) Sir Xaris will tell you about it soon...
    GreySage

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    Thu Feb 28, 2013 3:57 pm  

    Finally! We managed to get back together for a few hours of gaming. We cut the role-playing to a minimum this time as we wanted to kill something. (It's been too long - withdrawal hurts. Evil )

    Are you sure you want to go after that giant owlbear in the lair of the oozes?

    Participating PCs:
    Tumak Copperbeard - 4th level male dwarven Fighter;
    Blump Butter - 4th level male gnome Cleric;
    Ynohtna Noswal - 4th level male half-orc Ranger.

    The three adventurers returned to the Keep to better equip themselves for their next incursion. Unfortunately, the dwarf still insisted he had no need for a dagger (or other short, piercing weapon). They then returned to the Caves without incident. There were three caves remaining, which they had not yet fully explored: the high cave of the Iuzian Clerics and their undead minions; another high cave hidden in a tangled copse of trees that housed the bugbear tribe; and the low cave, also hidden within a small copse from which the Goblin Run emerged, in which the owlbear laired. A short argument ended in the decision to deal with the owlbear first, though it was decided with no little trepidation.

    The demi-humans found the trail that the owlbear must use to exit the copse surrounding his lair's entrance and advanced to the cave mouth. There, Tumak tied his war pony and the three looked carefully to see if any traps had been set. They had become wary of entering an enemy's lair without first doing so, even if that enemy was an owlbear and some oozes. Finding none, however, they cautiously entered. Electing to explore west (the direction of the owlbear's lair, they quickly caught sight of two bugbears at the limit of their darkvision. These brutes were aiming crossbows at them and soon firing them in their direction. Both bolts zipped by harmlessly and the dwarf charged. The half-orc followed more cautiously. The gnome sent his war dog to help the dwarf, but remained at the cave mouth watching the party's back to prevent the expected ambush.

    Tumak was smacked by one of the bugbears' hefty morningstars, but the other was dragged down by Blump's war dog. Tumak quickly cut the life from the prone goblinoid while the other yelled in its beastly tongue for someone, or something, to 'Wake up!' Ynohtna arrived to assist in this battle, but it proved more difficult to defeat the second bugbear as it fought defensively and backed toward the owlbear's lair.

    Just then, Blump spied a glistening spot on the ceiling in the direction from which the stream came. He noted that it was moving toward him and covered the extent of the ten foot wide passageway's roof. He called a warning to his friends and stepped outside the cavern in the hopes of luring the ooze outside for a battle. Blump's war dog immediately came at his call and exited the cavern in advance of the ooze. The half-orc barely avoided having the greyish blob drop upon him by diving out into the brambles near the gnome. Tumak, the dwarf, was not so fortunate, however. The ooze dropped upon the hapless Fighter and engulfed him completely.



    The Cleric stood paralyzed while trying to remember what methods worked and didn't work to damage the other oozes they battled. Tumak tried to swing his scizor, but found it impossible with the thick ooze engulfing his entire body. The Ranger drew out a potion of Cure Moderate Wounds and drank it to heal the vicious wound inflicted upon him by the bugbear that had been guarding the cave. Tumak was taking some severe damage, however, as the ooze constricted him and ate away at his exposed flesh with its acid.

    Regretting not purchasing a dagger, but refusing to admit such failure, Tumak forced the end of his scizor out of the ooze through strength of arm. Once his arm was free of the constricting miasma, he was free to flail against it with his slashing weapon. He did have to restrain the force of his blows, however, in order to avoid cutting all the way through to himself. (He only did half damage.) Ynohtna aided the dwarf in this endeavor and the two seemed to be making small progress, though the dwarf was being eaten at an alarming rate. Blump ordered his war dog to stay back and cast healing magics upon Ynohtna when the ooze lashed out at him.

    Shortly, the ooze stopped constricting and Tumak quickly sloughed it off of himself and emerged from the mouth of the cave. Immediately, there was an odd roar that ended in a squawk from just inside and a crossbow bolt flew out past them again. Quickly, the party prepared for the assault of the owlbear. That is, Tumak attempted to mount his pony to run away and Blump climbed up to the top of the cave mouth to escape the initial assault. Ynohtna, however, stood his ground in stupefaction at the apparent cowardice of his companions along with Blump's war dog who simply cocked his head at his master's exceptional mountaineering display.

    The owlbear - larger than most others encountered previously - rushed from the cave and overran the half-orc. Two claw attacks and a bite from it's beak savaged the Ranger and left him a bloody pile of pain on the ground. Tumak's war pony was now trapped between the owlbear and the tangled forest with no escape. The Fighter also realized that it was still tied and was not going to be his escape. So, he dismounted and hacked at the owlbear. Blump took up his rope and jumped from the top of the cave mouth onto the owlbear's back, distracting it from the attacking dwarf and the half-orc it had intended to make a meal of. The Cleric managed to hang on, but found it impossible to get the rope around its neck at the same time.

    The owlbear reared up onto its hind legs and slammed the gnome into the rocks above the cave mouth managing to take only a single swing at the dwarf in front of it. Tumak chose to take this opportunity to pour a healing potion down the half-orc's throat, then went back to attacking it when Ynohtna coughed and began to rise on shaky legs. Round after round of combat, Blump kept his perch, but couldn't wrap the rope around the owlbear's neck. The Fighter and Ranger hacked and slashed at the beast while suffering occasional swipes of its deadly paws.

    Finally, Blump managed to swing the rope around and catch it, forcing the owlbear back on its hind legs. This tripped it up and it fell to the ground in a clumsy pile of teeth and claws. The dwarf and half-orc fell upon it viciously with scizor and falcion until the beast was stilled. After Ynohtna performed a coup-de-grace to ensure it's demise, the Cleric summoned a healing burst of positive energy to heal them all. The dead owlbear did not benefit from this burst. The not-yet-dead, ooze did, however. Shocked

    All of a sudden, the ooze reached out and grabbed the Ranger by the leg. At the same time, another crossbow bolt shot from within the darkness of the cave. Not panicking this time, the adventurers slew that beast again, then, not seeing any bugbears or other threats within, decided to beat a retreat to the relative safety of the palisade fort before their luck ran out.

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Thu Sep 25, 2014 7:51 am; edited 5 times in total
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    Thu Feb 28, 2013 4:21 pm  

    Don't kill it! I want to keep it for a pet!

    Participating PCs:
    Tumak Copperbeard - 4th level male dwarven Fighter;
    Blump Butter - 4th level male gnome Cleric;
    Ynohtna Noswal - 4th level male half-orc Ranger.

    While resting and recouperating for a day at the palisaded fort, the three demi-humans discussed Tumak's penchant for claiming trophies of their kills. Again, the dwarf had claimed the male member of the giant owlbear as a trophy, but had been surprised to find that he had to hack through an actual bone to acquire that one. This had irritated his companions at the time since they were in a hurry to leave the vicinity, knowing that bugbears, likely other oozes, and perhaps a mate for the slain owlbear were all soon to be new threats.

    The dwarven warrior was not daunted, however, and bragged to all the soldiers, showing off the minotaur skull he intended to have made into a horned helm and the new trophy he planned to present to the Keep's tanner to be made into a rather large cod piece. This annoucement was met with much rolling of eyes from his companions and comradly laughter from the mercenaries.

    The following day, they decided to make their way back to the Keep via a scenic route through the forest. During their trek, a large spider (body about as big as two fists held together) dropped from the canopy onto the dwarf's shoulder and tried to bite him. He yelled at his friends not to chop at it and grabbed it in his mailed fist. It managed to bite him before he maneuvered it into a hold where it couldn't, but his dwarven constitution shrugged off the poisonous effects.

    The Fighter was having a difficult time convincing his companions that he could train the large spider to be a companion until the gnome suggested that he try speaking to it. Tumak was delighted at the possibility, so Blump cast his spell.

    Blump: Hey, there. Why did you attack my friend?
    Spider: Shaggy dwarf smelled tasty.
    Blump: (Translating and disagreeing with the spider's opinion of the dwarf's smell.) You can't eat the dwarf. What do you like to eat?
    Spider: Dwarf.
    Blump: What else to you like to eat? Worms? Bugs?
    Spider: Crickets. Mice. Birds. Halflings. Horses...
    Blump: Okay, okay. How about we find you something else to eat?
    Spider: Why not eat dwarf? Put me down.
    Blump: You can't eat the dwarf. He'll put you down when he's sure you won't try to eat him.
    Spider: Only suck his insides out. Not eat his bones and fur.
    Blump: You may not suck his insides out!...



    This continued for a bit as Tumak wanted to convince the spider to be his friend, but Blump realized the spider's intelligence was too child-like to convince it of anything and felt bad about trying to trick it. Eventually, they fed it some bugs and rats they caught and the dwarf carried it all the way back to the Keep. There, the Corporal of the Guard refused to allow him to enter the Keep with it until it was properly caged, so he stood without while Ynohtna and Blumb went to the Provisioner and had him fashion a wooden cage for it. The Corporal checked the cage's strength and was convinced that it would hold for a while, but made Tumak promise to have a metal cage built for it right away.

    So, the party marched back to the tavern for tales and ales surrounded by a gaggle of shrieking children, who kept a couple of arm's lengths away.

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Wed Jun 15, 2016 10:59 am; edited 4 times in total
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    Thu Feb 28, 2013 5:49 pm  

    That spider has a healthy appetite. bugs,birds, worms ok then halflings, horses, and dwarves. I wonder if the spider is one of Charlottes' children. Wink

    Later

    Argon
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    Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:03 am  

    The only "future" problem I foresee is that spiders are a favorite food item of kobolds . . . creatures with a penchant for living in caves. all the more reason for them to attack your party. Wink

    And fireballs work well against most Oozes. Of course, they work just as well against the Dwarves trapped within such Oozes too! Shocked

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    Sun Mar 03, 2013 1:06 pm  

    thanks for the tip against oozes but we dont have a sorcerer or a wizard to throw fireballs at them...
    GreySage

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    Sun Mar 03, 2013 4:57 pm  

    Tumak wrote:
    thanks for the tip against oozes but we dont have a sorcerer or a wizard to throw fireballs at them...


    Be careful who's advice you take, brave dwarf.

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    And fireballs work well against most Oozes. Of course, they work just as well against the Dwarves trapped within such Oozes too! Shocked


    Actually, they don't in Pathfinder. Grey oozes have Fire Resistance 10. That means that every time they take fire damage, it is reduced by 10 points. The first time they (you, Tumak) fought those oozes, they threw flasks of oil on them and lit them with a torch - all to little effect.

    Quote:
    The only "future" problem I foresee is that spiders are a favorite food item of kobolds . . . creatures with a penchant for living in caves. all the more reason for them to attack your party. Wink


    I'll definately keep that in mind! Evil Grin

    SirXaris
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    Mon Mar 04, 2013 6:44 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    And fireballs work well against most Oozes . . .


    Actually, they don't in Pathfinder . . .


    I'll keep that in mind . . . if I should ever learn the Pathfinder "Guidelines." Like I said before, played in Golarion once . . . but someone else DMed. Wink

    Didn't realize this was a Pathfinder game. My bad! Evil Grin

    Tumak wrote:
    . . . we don't have a sorcerer or a wizard to throw fireballs at them...


    Someone in your party should have the ability to use scrolls. But then again, this is "Pathfinder," so maybe they can't. Mad
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    Fri Apr 05, 2013 9:23 pm  

    It's been a while, but we recently found a chance to spend an evening gaming. We hoped for up to six players, but ended up with four plus me, DMing. That was a nice enough number.

    Insidious

    Participating PCs:
    Zeke - 4th level male elven Rogue (he has thrown off the Ranger guise);
    Blump Butter - 4th level male gnome Cleric;
    Ynohtna Noswal - 4th level male half-orc Ranger;
    Dwalt - 4th level male dwarven Barbarian.

    As the adventurers gathered equipment to make another foray against the denizens of the Caves of Chaos, they worried that even the four of them would prove less than sufficient to prevail against the surviving bugbears or the Iuzian Clerics and their undead guardians. The answer seemed to come directly from a beneficient god as a Cleric of Pelor approached the group and introduced himself as Akkub. The party had seen him and his acolytes about the Keep during the last month or so and knew that everyone spoke well of him. He briefly introduced his two acolytes and explained that they were under a vow of silence, but that he hoped to accompany the party on their next outing so as to assist them and provide some life experience for his two young wards. The party could see his prominently-displayed Peloran holy symbol and the greatclub he carried upon his back, but asked concernedly about his lack of armor. Akkub smiled slyly and rapped his knuckles upon his chest. The clank of metal demonstrated that his attire was metal, rather than the cloth it appeared to be.

    Our adventurers were delighted at the prospect of adding, not one, but three Clerics to their group and, detecting no deciet in the three, welcomed them to the club. Once again, they set off early in the morn to cheerful "Huzzah's!" from the soldiers upon the barbican and traveled peacefully along the road east to the palisaded guard post. After exchanging pleasantries with those guardsmen, they turned due west and made their way toward the ravine wherein lay the Caves of Chaos. Startling a small family of elves heading south for safety, they pointed the way and continued on.

    The ravine seemed deathly quiet now. The heroes stealthily made their way to the thicket that hid the entrance to the lair of the buchveer. A narrow path led to the cave, but no guards were apparent.



    Zeke carefully searched for traps and discovered a tripwire that would drop a net at the 'T' intersection, but promptly forgot about it after discussing the plan with the rest of the group. Fortunately, he managed to dive back before the weighted net fell upon him. Unfortunately, the clatter alerted the guards, who rushed to face the intruders while calling for back-up.

    Though footing was unsure on the floor covered by a net with fist-sized rocks tied into it, the party made short work of the two bugbears that had no chance to outflank them in the hallway. They then turned to face a half-dozen, or so, that rushed them from the other direction, hurling spears before engaging in melee combat. Dwalt and Blump stepped back and, grabbing ahold of the weighted net, pulled with all their might as the first two bugbears stepped upon its other end. They successfully jerked it out from under those goblinoid feet and cast the two beasts onto their backs. The following two (ten foot wide hallway) failed to avoid their fallen comrades and tripped on top of them. All this right in front of the entrance. Thus, Akkub and his acolytes were perfectly positioned to attack the prone buheer. The acolytes were, apparently, unskilled at combat, but Akkub's greatclub smashed down upon one bugbear, slashing its shoulder and sending a spurt of blood Dwalt's direction. Dwalt advanced to chop the bugbears with his dwarven waraxe, but Blump jumped on top of the two in front of him and lept onto the third in line, still standing. His aim was true, this time, and his axe drew blood before he landed skillfully at the bugbear's feet.

    Zeke and Ynohtna deduced that their five companions had the seven bugbears they counted easily contained and decided to (split the party Shocked ) search the guard room and the stairs up at the other end of the hall. Nothing of interest but a lit fire pit with skewers of meat roasting over it presented itself within the guardroom, but faint sounds could be heard from up the stairs. Zeke snuck to the top and found a door to the west and another locked, iron-bound, door around a corner to the east. Ynohtna quietly snuck up to the western door, where he discerned the noises were coming from. At that moment, that door opened and the bugbear chief emerged armed and armored for a fight. Spotting Ynohtna crouching just outside his doorway, he immediately engaged, slicing him with his own scizor and chopping him with a hand axe. Falling back, down the staircase, Ynohtna defended himself as best he could. Two armed females followed their chief out and Zeke followed them down the stairs after his Ranger friend.

    Lesson learned: Don't try to hide in a doorway. Razz

    Blump and Dwalt slashed, punched, and stabbed as the bugbears fought to regain their feet and soon found themselves surrounded. Suffering several severe stabs from the bugbears' spears, the gnome managed to maneuver out of the mob to stand beside the dwarven Barbarian. Akkub moved behind them and cast a beneficial spell to empower his allies while his acolytes remained in the entrance attempting to hit the bugbears pushing toward the demi-humans standing firm in the hallway. Blump called a warning and commanded his shield to flash a blinding light, which blinded a few of the bugbears and one of the acolytes, who was slow to realize what the warning meant. Back on the stairs, the half-orc lost the one-on-one confrontation with the bugbear chief and collapsed in a bloody heap on the stairs. At the same time, Zeke cruelly back-stabbed one of the chief's bodyguards/lovers and he and the one remaining turned to face the now apparent elven Rogue.

    Leaving Dwalt and the Pelorans to deal with the press of bugbears near the entrance, Blump ran over to heal the Ranger. As he did so, he was unaware that Akkub followed him until the traitor brought his greatclub down upon his back. This strike was painful, but tolerable to the doughty gnome. As Blump turned to face his new assailant, he called for his war dog to help. (Zeke noted the ugly slash the greatclub had left across the gnome's back as he turned.) Unfortunately, his war dog was intercepted by one of the acolytes who was pitifully unable to hurt it, but did manage to delay its assistance. Dwalt found himself surrounded by bugbears and the second acolyte kept casting spells at him that were distracting as he had to mentally fight them off while physically battling the giant goblinoids trying to stab him from every direction.

    Akkub in his true form.


    Ynohtna opened his eyes to find himself lying on the staircase between two powerful enemies - the bugbear chief and Akkub, who was attacking the gnome. Fearing that trying to stand up while next to those two warriors would only result in him being dropped in a bloody heap again, he instead took a swipe at Akkub's legs with his magical falchion from his prone position and rolled a few feet away. This proved little more than a slight distraction to the false Peloran, however. As the battle progressed, Dwalt called on the inner power of his rage and managed to defeat most of the bugbears engaged with him. Blump's dog tore apart the acolyte flailing at him with a mace, and Zeke dropped the other female bugbear who was trying to outflank him with her chief. At that moment, however, tragedy struck. Akkub swung his greatclub at the gnome's waiste and Blump's attempt to dodge the blow was abruptly halted as he stepped into the wall at his back. Nearly being cut in two, just below his breastplate, the gnome fell down the stairs, dead, dead, ... dead.



    Coldy furious, the half-orc Ranger pulled himself to his feet and proceeded to battle the traitorous Cleric, forcing him back down the stairs with overhand blows from his falchion that couldn't all be batted away by the Cleric's greatclub. Ynohtna cut down the offending Akkub, Zeke defeated the powerful blows of the bugbear chief's scizor and hand axe, Dwalt cut down the two remaining bugbears, and the last acolyte, seeing his master fall, turned and fled out the cave entrance. The Ranger called for Blump's war dog to chase him and the two proceeded to catch him and cut him down before he'd exited the thicket outside. Zeke and Dwalt checked Blump for life and, finding none, began to bicker over his magical belongings. rolleyes

    Zeke discovered that his magical sword had been broken in the fight, but the survivors searched the rest of the bugbear caves and discovered some nice treasure and freed some interesting captives. In one prison they discovered some kobolds, a goblin, and some orcs, all of whom they slew without much consideration. They freed a dwarven merchant, two human woodsmen, and two elves who claimed to live in the forest nearby. In another prison room they slew several imprisoned hobgoblins and a gnoll, but spared a bugbear on the word of a barbarous human claiming to hail from the far north. He claimed that this bugbear was imprisoned by the others because he objected to the tribe following the priests of Iuz. (He neglected to mention this was on account of that bugbear remaining true to the worship of Hruggek, his racial deity). The human explained that this bugbear had taught him to speak his language and had become his friend, preventing him from despairing in captivity. Thus, the party allowed the bugbear and barbarous human to leave together on their own recognizance.



    Returning the other freed captives to the safety of the Keep, Zeke forked over lots of coin for the repair of his magical blade and the others forked over even more to have Figolwren, the elven advisor to the Castellan, Identify all the equipment they brought back that he detected as magical. They claimed a fine chain shirt of magical mithril from the bugbear chief and a magical (glamoured) black dragonhide breastplate from the body of Akkub (whom they discovered, bore the symbol of Iuz tattooed upon his shoulder). His greatclub ceased its magical disguise upon his death and the heroes discovered that it was a quite useful greatsword, which the Ranger claimed in place of his falchion. They claimed a magical hand axe and the chief's scizor for their friend, Tumak, should he rejoin them. Several potions proved useful, though they weren't quite sure what to do with the six potions of Undetectable Alignment they found upon the body of Akkub. The Bag of Holding full of catnip turned out to be a very nice spoil of the battle.



    A merchant returned with a second Bag of Holding that Zeke had previously paid for, cheering the party further. They were awarded much reward for the safe return of the dwarven merchant and all party members not yet members of The Witch is Dead, et. al. guild were given honorary memberships. They then spoke to Abdiel about returning their clerical gnomish friend to life. Sadly, Abdiel appologized for not having the power to cast such a spell himself and explained that the scroll he used on Ynohtna was the only one he had. However, he promised to write a letter of recommendation that he suggested the party take to the temple of Heironeous in either Schwartzenbruin or Chendl, where there was likely to be a Cleric of sufficient power to bring their friend back to life.

    Now, they had a hard choice: stay to finish off the threat the Iuzian Clerics posed to the good people of the Keep, or travel to a distant city to Raise one of their lost friends from death.

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Oct 13, 2020 6:08 pm; edited 8 times in total
    GreySage

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    Sat Apr 06, 2013 7:59 am  

    Decisions, decisions . . . always hard to make! Evil Grin

    Are your players never going to catch a break? They could use one "real" cleric.

    And let me add this: In spite of what the Source Materials may say, I've played many types of clerics in my computer game T.o.E.E. and the Cleric of Pelor always fairs better against the Undead -- which you needn't worry about here -- and always has the "most" healing available, which benefits any campaign.

    Just a thought! Wink Laughing
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    Sat Apr 06, 2013 4:29 pm  

    Damn it Blump!!! Evil Grin

    Now I see what I missed Sad I hope we'll finish this soon and get to the next campaign... Smile
    GreySage

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    Sat Apr 06, 2013 8:17 pm  

    Tumak wrote:
    Damn it Blump!!! Evil Grin

    Now I see what I missed Sad I hope we'll finish this soon and get to the next campaign... Smile


    Why? Do you think the next adventure will be any easier? Razz

    All that's left now is for you guys to confront the Iuzians in their cave full of undead.

    SirXaris
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    Sun Apr 07, 2013 6:39 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Do you think the next adventure will be any easier?


    Tumak, the man works for TPK Games! Shocked

    What part of "Total Party Kill" do you not understand? rolleyes Evil Grin

    He just told you that you have to face an Iuzian cleric with Undead minions and the man refuses to allow you the ultimate "Undead slayer" . . . a true Cleric of Pelor! No other Cleric destroys Undead as well as does a Cleric of Pelor. I'm amazed that he allowed you to get this far and proud that you guys have actually reached 4th level!

    Sir Xaris . . . messed up! Evil Grin


    Mwahahahahahahahahahahaha!


    I play my computer version of Temple of Elemental Evil quite often. And it's based upon the same Game Mechanics we use here, only, being a computer program, there's no way to "cheat." The computer is the DM.

    I've played many Clerics of different Gods. None of them kill off the Undead the way the Clerics of Pelor do. At 9th and 10th levels -- the game goes no higher -- "Greater Turning" destroys them by the dozens.

    The game is "turn" based. When surrounded with Undead, I simply "defend myself" until it's the Cleric's turn, then -- "Greater Turning." Poof! No more Undead. The Clerics of other Gods don't do that nearly so well. It's altered the way I play table top with my group.
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    Sat Apr 13, 2013 9:22 pm  

    Oh, I know where he works... It's just that Tumak the Mighty never died...nor will he :D

    Now that we are level 5 (most of us I think) we are going to get this going. We went to their cave and...well I'll leave it to Sir Xaris to tell you the story Evil Grin I hope it will be soon though...
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    Sat Apr 13, 2013 11:11 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:


    Tumak, the man works for TPK Games! Shocked

    What part of "Total Party Kill" do you not understand? rolleyes Evil Grin

    He just told you that you have to face an Iuzian cleric with Undead minions and the man refuses to allow you the ultimate "Undead slayer" . . . a true Cleric of Pelor! No other Cleric destroys Undead as well as does a Cleric of Pelor. I'm amazed that he allowed you to get this far and proud that you guys have actually reached 4th level!

    Sir Xaris . . . messed up! Evil Grin


    Mwahahahahahahahahahahaha!


    I play my computer version of Temple of Elemental Evil quite often. And it's based upon the same Game Mechanics we use here, only, being a computer program, there's no way to "cheat." The computer is the DM.

    I've played many Clerics of different Gods. None of them kill off the Undead the way the Clerics of Pelor do. At 9th and 10th levels -- the game goes no higher -- "Greater Turning" destroys them by the dozens.

    The game is "turn" based. When surrounded with Undead, I simply "defend myself" until it's the Cleric's turn, then -- "Greater Turning." Poof! No more Undead. The Clerics of other Gods don't do that nearly so well. It's altered the way I play table top with my group.


    The caves shall flow with the blood of the non-believers. Evil Grin

    Later

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    Sun Apr 14, 2013 10:52 am  

    Here is something I wrote about my dwarf with a little help of Sir Xaris

    Long before the discovery of mithril, steel, silver, and gold, the mighty dwarven families used to smith lesser metals. The most famous family was the Whitebeards, and their elder, Kazgrym Whitebeard, was known as the best blacksmith in all the families that used to live under the Copper Mountain. By the time he was 181 years old his arms were weak and, while forging a war hammer, he accidently dipped his beard in the mold filled with copper and his beard was white no more. Since that day, all of his successors naturally started growing copper beards. The rest of the dwarf families living under the Copper Mountain took that as a sign of their god Dumathoin and started honoring the Copperbeard family as royal. It is said that a couple of his hairs fell off in the mold and made the war hammer magic.

    Centuries later, Moruk Copperbeard, king of the Copper Mountain and High Herald of Dumathoin, sent his second son Tumak on a dangerous quest in finding the lost enchanted Earthbreaker of Return, forged by Kazgrym Copperbeard himself. Tumak and his younger brother Toruk are the only two direct heirs of Kazgrym Copperbeard and they claim the right of owning it. Now, after decades of it being lost, Tumak had his hands on it, yet it slipped once again. He has vowed to bring it back to the Copper Mountain, and prove his oldest brotherís death (the first son of Moruk died by the hand of giants while chasing after the missing Earthbreaker) to have been worthy of it.

    Tumak Copperbeard, in fact, is the direct descendant of Kazgrym Copperbeard, rightful heir to the throne under the Copper Mountain. He is known by many nicknames such as Slayer of the Minotaur, the Mighty Duelist, the Orc Hewer, the Ogre Bane, and (for a short time) Tumak Nobeard. Royal blood rushes through his body, fear is an unknown word for him, and there are stories of his adventures and battles, but no one can tell the whole story except him since none who battled on his side survived to tell the tale. Now, the dwarven noble, disguised as a simple traveler, walks through lands uncharted on dwarven maps.
    GreySage

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    Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:57 am  

    Tumak wrote:
    ...but no one can tell the whole story except him since none who battled on his side survived to tell the tale.


    The accuracy of this prognostication remains to be seen. Cool

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    Sun Apr 14, 2013 12:07 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Tumak wrote:
    ...but no one can tell the whole story except him since none who battled on his side survived to tell the tale.


    The accuracy of this prognostication remains to be seen. Cool

    SirXaris
    till tonight! :D
    GreySage

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    Sun Apr 14, 2013 1:36 pm  

    Tumak wrote:
    I wrote about my dwarf with a little help of Sir Xaris.


    Really? Lost yourself, did you? Don't know, or remember, who you are, do you? Xaris using his degree in Psychology to help you find yourself? Shocked

    Terrific! Now both of you will be lost . . . O' Mighty Prince "Under the (Copper) Mountain." Laughing Laughing Laughing
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    Sun Apr 14, 2013 4:41 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Tumak wrote:
    I wrote about my dwarf with a little help of Sir Xaris.


    Really? Lost yourself, did you? Don't know, or remember, who you are, do you? Xaris using his degree in Psychology to help you find yourself? Shocked

    Terrific! Now both of you will be lost . . . O' Mighty Prince "Under the (Copper) Mountain." Laughing Laughing Laughing


    laugh yes, while you can...having an axe in your mouth will make it harder Evil Grin Evil Grin
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    Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:48 am  

    too ashamed to post something skip? :D

    so much about the notorious Iuzian cleric...
    GreySage

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    Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:30 pm  

    Sounds like the Iuzian cleric had a "bad day" at the last gaming session! Surprised

    Threatening to put your axe in my mouth? Aren't you concerned that my father may have been a Rust Monster? (Monster Manual I, p. 216) Evil Grin


    Mwahahahahahahahahaha!


    Hey, in Greyhawk, anything is possible! Wink
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    Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:56 pm  

    Edit: During a short interlude, the party traveled south of the Keep into the lands of the Wood Elves. There, they visited a temple of Ehlonna to request that their gnomish friend be raised from the dead. They offered their own witness of the gnome's forthrightness and produced letters from Abdiel, High Priest of the Keep, and Elya, the dryad. Ynohtna and Tumak had requested her assistance in this matter when they sought her out to give her the magical cloak that had been promised. A hefty donation (every bit of monetary value the party possessed) to the temple sealed the deal and Blump was returned alive and well to his friends.

    Iuz's revenge!

    Participating PCs:
    Tumak Copperbeard - 5th level dwarven Fighter;
    Blump Butter - 5th level gnome Cleric;
    Bill - 5th level dwarven Barbarian;
    Zekiel - 5th level elven Rogue;
    Ynohtna Noswal - 5th level half-orc Ranger.

    The doughty adventurers prepared well for their foray against the Iuzian Clerics known to be lairing within the final cave in the ravine. Akkub's betrayal was keen in their minds, cementing their desire to strike back at Iuz even more so than the deaths of their comrads at the hands of the various humanoids. Eagerly, they made their way to the entrance.

    Once there, they made a careful search for traps and, finding none, Zeke crept in. About 30 feet into the passage he encountered a 'T' intersection with a 20 foot wide passageway heading north and south. On either side of the entrance hall, he detected a magical rune, which Blump identified as a Glyph of Warding, a spell which he had recently learned to cast himself. Blump was able to deduce that the magical glyph had something to do with light, but he was not familiar with this particular one. Bill, the new dwarven member of the group solved this first dilema by boldly walking through it. He cringed a bit as the area around him immediately lit up brightly, then had no time to relax as he was attacked before his eyes adjusted to the change in brightness.



    Four skeletons and an ogre zombie with a familiar greatsword were waiting for him around the corner. His companions, however, were quick to back him up and rushed in to the fight. They soon realized that they were a little too eager to join in as none of them checked the northern passage as they ran to face the undead to the south. Four more skeletons attacked from the north and the adventurers found themselves surrounded. Never-the-less, the party was quite capable of handling such adversaries and only the ogre zombie proved more difficult than expected. To whit, when its enormous gut was slashed open by multiple hits from axe, scimitar, and greatsword, a host of crawling vermin poured forth from within and assaulted the nearby heroes. An agile dance and some skipping and jumping served to dislodge the vermin swarms before they could make their way within the armor of the half-orc and the Barbarian. Realizing the swarms were very slow-moving, the group decided not to waste spells and resources in their destruction and simply advanced up the north passageway.

    At it's end, they discovered a solid oak door, banded in iron to the east, another oaken door in the north wall, and a sloped passageway continuing upward to the west. Zeke cracked open the unlocked door in the northern wall and spied four amored humans preparing to emerge for battle. Stealthily, he shut the door and took up a position to the side. The other party members prepared to meet the assault as well and only one of the four Iuzian Acolytes survived long enough to take a swing with his mace. It was of no consequence, however, as he joined his evil fellows in death very quickly.

    After taking a few minutes to loot the bodies of the fallen Clerics and their room, they heard a voice from the top of the stairs call them out, pronouncing a very painful doom upon them. At the top of the sloped passageway to the west, they saw a dark, plate-armored, figure silhouetted by the flickering light of torches behind him to either side. To his left and right hand stood unmoving zombies. Most of the adventurers moved into defensive positions, but Bill, the dwarven Barbarian, decided to put an end to the threats and charged up the slope. A laughing command ending in an unseen sneer behind his close-faced helm kicked the zombies into action. Two to either side of him upended a large barrel of oil, which ran down the slope, covering the floor. This was immediately followed by two torches which flew over the zombie's heads and, landing amid the oil, lit the slope in flames. Bill, managed to slip to a halt and reversed direction as quickly as possible, running back to join his compatriots outside the reach of the burning oil pooling at the base of the slope.

    As they waited for the fire to burn itself out, they saw the zombies part and a host of skeletons run down the slope, through the fire, directly at them. Comically, a couple of the front-runners slipped on the burining oil and slid face-first into the fray. This brought down a few others behind them as well and it proved a much less-devastating charge than it may have otherwise been. As the heroes laid into the skeletons with bludgeoning weapons and the flats of their blades, they noted that they continued to burn, though they were no longer within the firey oil and they seemed to be unharmed by the flames. The heat from these burning skeletons, however, caused much discomfort to the heroes.



    An evil chanting began to be heard from behind the plate-armored Cleric and his zombies. Blump called on the power of Garl Glittergold to summon positive energy and the skeletons staggered as pieces of bone erupted from their bodies. Blump was quite surprised to note that these skeletons were tougher than expected and not as susceptible to the effects of his channeled energy as normal skeletons. Then, pointing to Blump, the Iuzian spoke the words of a most insidious spell. He said, "Kill him!" None understood the true meaning of the words except Tumak, who immediately felt compelled to obey. Moving behind Blump, the Fighter slashed him across the back with his scizor. Crying out in pain and confusion, the gnome was little comforted by the dwarf's shouted appology.

    The battle continued with the Iuzian continuing to assault the heroes with cruel magic from the safety offered by the burning slope. Blump channeled positive energy again and the skill of the warriors eventually brought the burning skeletons low. By this time, the oil on the slope had burned itself out, so the party charged to meet the enemy toe-to-toe at the top. The zombies proved a speed bump, but the Iuzian priest struck back at Bill the Barbarian with equal skill with a viper-headed rod. Fortunately, the sturdy dwarf's constitution withstood the venom injected into his veins with each strike. The top of the slope ended in another 'T' intersection, with passages running north and south again. More zombies and burning skeletons stood in both passages and moved to fill the gaps left by their falling brethren. Blump channeled positive energy twice more during this fight, but wanted to save his final use of the day. Many of the undead succombed to these forceful assaults, but many others largely resisted the effects. The Iuzian called loudly for 'Ragnar'. The iron-bound, eastern door at the bottom of the slope opened and a powerfully built warrior wearing an executioner's hood and wielding a greataxe emerged and charged up the slope to engage Blump.



    As the Iuzian retreated step-by-step, Tumak managed to keep up and scored a serious blow beneath the evil priest's armpit. Four Iuzian Adepts leapt to his defense and he was able to retreat behind a sizeable horde of undead. The Adepts were little more effective than the undead at slowing the advance of the adventurers, but Ragnar proved more difficult to defeat. The Iuzian cast a spell that plunged the intersection into darkness, but Blump countered it with a newly learned Daylight spell. The Iuzian Cleric was then seen drinking a couple of potions as he retreated back up the darkness of the northern hallway. Eventually, burned, battered, and bloodied, the party destroyed the last of the undead and Ragnar, the half-orc executioneer, and paused briefly to bind their wounds. Shortly, they advanced north after the Iuzian priest. They quickly searched a barrack, confiscating the valuable dishes and coinage, and contiued their march. Bill noted a secret door in a slanting portion of the passage and hung back to check it out without informing the rest of the party. Discovering nothing but a dusty alcove behind it, he rejoined the others.

    Zeke was the first to enter the temple at the end of the hall. Dark draperies covered the walls of this enormous sculpted temple. A huge bell, three evil altars, and a dais with a bejeweled throne and four lesser chairs only briefly held his attention when dozens of candles burst into reddish flame. Even spying the Iuzian standing, arms upraised, before the throne couldn't distract him from the hypnotizing effect of the nauseating mural on the west wall. Zeke stood frozen to the spot as his companions moved up behind him. Tumak slapped him out of the daze, but succumbed to it himself. The Iuzian commanded him to kneel at the altar, but he forced his mind free of the hold the magic of the mural had on him. He, Zeke, Blump, and Bill all pretended to be enthralled and advanced halfway down the lengthy temple to kneel before the red and black altars. As the Iuzian commanded them to praise his dark lord, Zeke, Bill, and Tumak rose and charged him. A shouted command brought forth a dozen shrine-blessed, burning skeletons and a dozen shrine-blessed zombies from behind doors hidden by the draperies, cutting off the party's escape. Ynohtna heard the shuffling feet approaching and ambushed the zombies as they emerged. Unfortunately, he quickly found himself surrounded, so Blump and his war dog ran back to his aid.

    The Iuzian cleric.


    An epic battle ensued between the three heroic warriors and the Iuzian priest. High on the power of several potions and enhancing spells, he battled all three with confidence. Blump used the final channeling power of the day, weekening most of the skeletons and zombies. These had the power of Iuz's temple enhancing them, though, so they were not so easily destroyed. After the exchange of many blows, the skeletons and zombies were mostly destroyed and the Iuzian was seriously wounded. He pulled a potion vial from a pouch at his belt and made to drink it. Tumak was quicker, but the Iuzian deftly avoided the dwarf's attempt to bat it from his hand. Downing the potion caused the Iuzian, armor and all, to disolve into a cloud of gas before the warrior's eyes. Unfortunately for the evil priest, that did not immunize him from the magical blade at the end of the Rogue's arm. The Iuzian solidified in death and dropped unceremoniously to the floor next to the throne.

    It was at this point that the insidiousness of the demi-god's power was invoked. Iuz was already displeased at the failure of his priest to prevent the heroes from destroying the army he had amassed behind his enemy's lines. But, he was even more displeased that the heroes had successfully violated his temple. Bill, the dwarven Barbarian, and Tumak the dwarven Fighter, both coveted the plate armor worn by the Iuzian's corpse. They began to argue over who would claim it as spoils of battle. Blump and Ynohtna, being uninterested in the armor, ignored the arguing dwarves and concentrated on healing their wounds. Zeke stealthily sidled over to the throne and worked to remove the gemstones embedded in its backboard. Shortly, the dwarves fell to blows, but none of the other heroes felt compelled to intervene, as the fight had been agreed upon as an honorable duel. A few comments about waiting until they were safely out of the Caves went unheeded by the furious dwarves. Zeke was distracted briefly and broke the most valuable gem, shattering it into hundreds of worthless pieces. This motivated him to concentrate upon his task and ignore the battle completely.

    Soon, two zombies armored in banded mail emerged from behind another curtain and assailed the battling dwarves. So enthralled with the greed of Iuz, the two dwarves completely ignored the zombies and continued to attack each other. Blump and Ynohtna raced over and engaged the zombies, defeating them in time to see Tumak's scizor slice open Bill's throat. All out of healing magic, Blump searched for a potion, but discovered that it was too late to save the Barbarian's life.

    To be continued...

    SirXaris
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    Last edited by SirXaris on Sat Aug 29, 2020 1:33 pm; edited 9 times in total
    GreySage

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    Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:09 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Bill . . . and Tumak . . . both coveted the plate armor . . . They began to argue over who would claim it as spoils of battle . . . the two dwarves completely ignored the zombies and continued to attack each other.


    Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of Dwarves? Confused

    Sir Xaris knows! Evil Grin


    Hahahahahahahahaha!


    SirXaris wrote:
    Four skeletons and an ogre zombie . . . they saw the zombies part and a host of skeletons run down the slope, through the fire, directly at them . . . from behind the plate-armored Cleric and his zombies . . . Soon, two zombies armored in banded mail emerged from behind another curtain . . .


    And still that "bastard" from TPK Games won't let you players have a legitimate Cleric of Pelor in your group! Evil

    Or are you guys really that dumb? Confused Laughing Laughing Laughing

    SirXaris wrote:
    An agile dance and some skipping and jumping served to dislodge the vermin swarms . . . Realizing the swarms were very slow-moving, the group decided not to waste spells and resources in their destruction and simply advanced up the north passageway.


    C'mon guys! A Magic User/Cleric buys scrolls the way a Fighter/Warrior/Barbarian buys weapons! If you can't cast Fireball, at least purchase a scroll of Fireball! You can "toss it off" over your shoulder as you run!

    Trust me, in my game . . . those swarms of vermin are going to be awaiting your return! Wink Evil Grin

    Tumak and the guys haven't learned their lesson yet, Xaris . . . kill off a couple of more of them!


    Mwahahahahahahahahahaha!


    (Having lots of fun with this!) Wink
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    GreySage

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    Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:46 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    (Having lots of fun with this!) Wink


    Glad you're enjoying it, Mystic. Happy

    I hadn't expected them to be 5th level by the time they took on the Iuzian High Priest, but they had a rough time of it anyway. Blump, the gnomish Cleric of Garl Glittergold, is doing a fine job of channeling positive energy when necessary, saving some for emergencies.

    And, if you are familiar with The Keep on the Borderlands, you know that they have a surprise or two awaiting them as they finish searching the Clerics' cave... Evil Grin

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    GreySage

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    Tue Apr 16, 2013 1:54 pm  

    Sir Xaris wrote:
    . . . if you are familiar with The Keep on the Borderlands, you know that they have a surprise or two awaiting them as they finish searching the Clerics' cave . . .


    Oh, yeah! Evil Grin

    And by the way, you have permission to throw in a . . .


    Mwahahahahahahahaha!


    . . . every now and again!


    Hahahahahahahahahaha!
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    Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:00 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    Iuz's revenge!

    Unfortunately for the evil priest, that did not immunize him from the magical blade at the end of the Rogue's arm.


    It was me who finished him with my ghost touch scizore, not the Rogue...

    And just to clarify, I didn't mean to kill Bill, he challenged me on a duel to the death, and I didn't want to kill him I just wanted to get him bellow 0 HP, it's just that he raged and attacked me, and my final blow killed him instead of just putting him down unconscious... I hope the armor is worth it lol
    GreySage

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    Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:57 pm  

    Tumak wrote:
    ... I didn't mean to kill Bill...


    You said, 'Kill Bill'. Razz

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    GreySage

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    Fri Apr 19, 2013 8:38 am  

    Damn back-stabbing Dwarves! Can't trust any of them! Especially when it comes to gold or . . . armor! Razz


    Mwahahahahahahahaha!
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    Wed May 01, 2013 6:38 am  

    haha - absolutely wonderful SirXaris! Your accounts demonstrate the importance of tweeking the modules to challenge the party. Very entertaining to read. I enjoyed seeing the keep set in the north vs Iuz, as I've run it in the yeomanry facing Wastri in for years. Well done. I also particularly like your treatment of kobolds - i have had similar fun buffing them up so now my friends have learned to dread ( iknow it sounds funny) the kobolds of the Tors. "I think I just saw a kobold ahead" Shocked followed by anxious groans and the sounds of weapons being readied. what fun!
    Well done - keep it goin - looking forward to seeing what you've done with the "suprises" ahead of them.
    GreySage

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    Wed May 01, 2013 8:35 am  

    GreyMaus wrote:
    Your accounts demonstrate the importance of tweaking the modules to challenge the party.


    Yes. It proves, once again, that any module can be run for any level group of characters, it just takes a little work on the DM's part. The DM cannot be lazy.

    GreyMaus wrote:
    I've run it in the Yeomanry facing Wastri for years.


    Interesting, you placed Wastri in the Hool Marshes although he is said to dwell in the Vast Swamp, which is on the other side of the Flanaess. Makes for an interesting game.

    Yes, modules can be leveled up, or leveled down and set anywhere the DM likes. Wonderful gaming!

    Looking forward to you posting one of yours, GreyMaus! Cool
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    Wed May 01, 2013 9:12 am  

    Thank you for the praise, GreyMaus. Happy

    I am very glad that you enjoyed the read. I do like your idea of placing it near the Hool Marshes and using Wastri and his priests as the bad guys behind the gathering of various humanoid races in the Caves. I find it very likely that Wastri has priests in every swamp in the Flanaess. In fact, the presence of his clerics is canonized in the Cold Marshes north of the lands of Iuz, so there's no reason they couldn't also be in the Hool.

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    GreySage

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    Wed May 01, 2013 10:09 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    I do like your idea of . . . using Wastri and his priests as the bad guys . . . Wastri has priests in every swamp in the Flanaess.


    Who said otherwise? Confused

    Wastri -- himself -- resides in the Vast Swamp. That's all I said. Razz
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    Fri May 03, 2013 8:34 am  

    I agree with you both, wise Mystic and noble Xaris. I should have been a little more specific. I've not been so diabolical as to have my players actually face Wastri himself in the Hools. They are usually only levels 1-5 or so when doing my version of the keep and caverns. They have faced his priests and assorted followers of his however. I expanded the mound of the lizard men area encounter to give them clues as to the "real evil" lurking later in the shrine of evil chaos (K). I have also adapted the generic evil priests there in order to better suit the Hopping Prophet. Since many of my players seem to be demi-humans I found his hatred of these races fun to play with. Wastri "the Hammer of False Humans" does, I believe, reside in the Sacred Polystery in the Vast Swamps.
    Now that I think about it Idea I should start an evil based campaign this summer for my sons and friends. It would be fun to roll up some Bullywugs and Lizardmen and seek a little payback for the attrocites the gray toad has endured over the years.
    GreySage

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    Tue May 28, 2013 10:18 pm  

    Greed

    Participating PCs
    Blump - male, gnome, 5th level cleric (Garl Glittergold);
    Zeke - male, half-elf, 5th level rogue;
    Rickson - male, human, 5th level paladin (Heironeous).

    As the battle between the two supposed comrades ended, Tumak sat down in dejected silence. Blump attended to Bill's body while Zeke searched the lair of the Iuzian High Priest. He discovered an opulently furnished waiting room beyond the curtains the last two zombies had emerged from. He collected a few bejeweled goblets, then continued his plundering in the bedroom through the next door. Within, he found some quite valuable bedsheets and personal paraphenalia, which he deposited into his bag of holding along with the goblets and various gemstones he'd previously collected. Upon opening the wardrobe, a fistful of tiny gems fell out at his feet. After sweeping them up into his hand, he searched the cloaks within until discovering one that appeared quite expensive. Trying it on, he began to itch, then felt those itches turn to pricks and pinches. Quickly discarding the garment, he watched in horror as a swarm of biting insects poured forth from its inner lining.

    Blump rejoined the rogue and informed him that the distraught dwarf had decided to return to the Keep and, perhaps, his homeland in the Jotens for a spell. The gnome and half-elf then retraced their steps to the top of the ramp where they had first faced the evil clerics, their undead horde, and Ragnar, the executioner. Just south of that intersection was a room decorated as a temple to Iuz the Evil. Upon the altar sprawled a human male, bound with leather apparently made from the tanned entrails of previous human(oid?) victims. He had suffered myriad small cuts upon his body which allowed his life-blood to slowly eke away, running in rivulets down the sides of the altar to pool in a trough on the floor. Though unconscious, his breathing was perceptable to the two demi-humans. Blump immediately cast some healing spells upon the victim while Zeke set about cutting his bonds.

    Having first healed his wounds, Blump was then able to revive the man and learned that he was a paladin of Heironeous recently captured while traveling the road to the Keep. Rickson, as he introduced himself, profusely thanked his rescuers. Just then, he noticed Zeke about to take up the golden unholy objects upon the various shelves at the back of the room and warned the rogue that he could see the evil in those accursed items and strongly advised him not to risk the consequences of laying hands upon them. Though the temptation was great, Zeke chose to heed the paladin's warning and let those treasures go.

    Claiming his arms and armor from a storage compartment beneath the altar, Rickson joined his two rescuers. They headed south, bypassing one room to investigate a larger room with skeletal guardians standing at attention on the perimeter. Another long-dead skeletal form slouched upon a throne against the back wall. The cleric and paladin noted the glint of golden gilding upon the bones of the unmoving skeletal guardians while Zeke noted the shine of gems embedded in the throne's tall back. Moving forward cautiously, Zeke approached the throne. Blump and Rickson whispered a warning, but Zeke ignored them. Blump walked over and struck one of the golden ancient guardians a heavy blow with his morning star. It crumpled into fragments at his feet, the clatter of it's halberd, shield, and chain armor echoing loudly down the hallway. After about six seconds of anticipatory cringing, the three relaxed a bit when nothing seemed to come of the commotion.

    Zeke resumed his mission to claim the gems and worked to pry one out of the ancient, preserved, wooden throne. As his hands worked and his mind focused on the task at hand, he tried not to be distracted by the sounds of battle as his friends found themselves surrounded by a dozen animated golden skeletons. Blump wisely channeled positive energy, but none of the enemy fell. Small chips and pieces of bone splintered from most of the undead, but they continued their advance and attacked with fury. Battling back to back, the cleric and paladin defended themselves from the incoming blows as best they could while summoning forth the power of the positive material plane as often as their experience and skills allowed their bodies to act as its focus. In less than a minute, the skeletons had all fallen into piles of ancient dust, but Zeke was not prepared for the shadowy hand that reached for his wrist from the back of the throne.



    A shadow of blackest night reached forth, ghost-like, from the wood upon which he was working and grasped his wrist with a cold, weakening, grip. Jerking back, the rogue struggled to draw his weapon to battle this new threat. The shadow emerged fully from the throne and followed him, slashing with surprisingly sharp claws made of negative energy. Flailing before him with his magical scimitar, he was pleasantly surprised to find that it cut the creature as if it were flesh and bone. Blump and Rickson rushed over to assist with their own positive energy, but Zeke's holy scimitar successfully cut the thing to ribbons of blackness that quickly faded away to nothingness.

    Quickly collecting his wits, Zeke returned to collecting his prize. It was then that Blump noticed a pack of ghouls racing toward them from the direction of the room they had bypassed on their way to this one. Calling a warning, the three made their stand, the holy warriors using up the last of their ability to channel positive energy, and Zeke slipping in behind the pack to cut them down by surprise. They were successful in resisting the paralyzing effects of the few wounds they suffered and Zeke was able to complete the acquisition of the gems.



    It was time, now, to explore the dungeon.

    SirXaris
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    Wed May 29, 2013 5:13 am  

    I am running a DnD Next campaign test play of this module (redone), the characters are

    Tyr Njoror Lawful Neutral Paladin (Warden). level 3
    Sven Ar'den Lawful Neural Rogue level 3. Jeweller by trade

    We are using the Norse mytholgy and have the campaign set in a alternate earth history.

    So far the system seems to take me back to the days of 2nd edition, with enough new stuff to make things fun. I enjoy the playtest of DnD Next thus far.

    The party managed to make it to level 3 during the first session. Culminated in the two of them taking down an ogre while thoroughly intoxicated. Good times.
    GreySage

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    Fri May 31, 2013 9:07 pm  

    Finale

    Participating PCs
    Blump - male, gnome, 5th level cleric (Garl Glittergold);
    Zeke - male, half-elf, 5th level rogue;
    Rickson - male, human, 5th level paladin (Heironeous).

    The three healed what they could and made their way back north to the door to the dungeons. Following a twisting passage, they came to a barred, iron-bound oaken door with a small, barred window offering a partial view into a prison. From around a corner, a voice attached to two shapely female legs begged to be freed.

    Zeke was unsure, but Rickson did not hesitate to open the door. Zeke, however, restrained the paladin with a hand on the shoulder and warned him to tread carefully. Recognizing the wisdom of such caution in the lair of the Iuzian clerics, Rickson moved around the corner with Zeke. Both men allowed their gazes to travel up the shapely legs and along the length of the woman's torso, but a sudden hissing stopped them at that point. Steeling themselves, they refused to look directly into the eyes of the snake-haired medusa chained to the wall. (Both players rolled natural 20s for their saves. Cool )



    Though the medusa made an heroic effort to convince the heroes to free her (promising to seek out and destroy every Iuzian she could find and leaving this area forever), they remained unconvinced of her sincerity. Rickson was sure that her soul was blackest evil, nor were Zeke or Blump willing to trust her with her freedom. While Blump remained outside on watch, Zeke moved in to finish her as humanely as possible. In her fury, however, she lunged at her executioner and nearly broke the chains from the wall. Zeke didn't hesitate any longer and simply stabbed as many times and as quickly as he could. One chain broke from the wall before the medusa succumbed to the many wounds inflicted by Zeke's blades and the warriors left the now-empty prison in silence.

    Another passage led to a very old door that didn't appear to have been disturbed in recent history. Opening it, they followed a hallway down a long staircase to a tomb. Within were several dozen crypts and a large sarcophagus. Finding nothing of value within the crypts, the three carefully planned the opening of the stone sarcophagus. Weapons drawn, at its head and foot, Zeke and Blump prepared for an undead creature to arise as Rickson positioned himself to the side to push the lid off. With an impressive effort, he succeeded, and their preparations proved wise as a wight rose from within to assault them. The battle was furious, but quick. The three suffered a few scrapes, cuts, and bruises, but the blades of the heroes hewed it into permanently dead pieces and none were permanently overcome by the weakness the undead being's strikes had caused them.

    Claiming some ancient jewelry, an equally ancient, but magical sword, and matching helm from the wight's tomb, the three victorious heroes returned to the Keep. There, Zeke informed Tornamir (the Castellan), Figolwren (his elven advisor), and Gelinjay (the gnome scribe) of their success. Rickson paid his respects to Abdiel (the high priest of Heironeous) at the chapel and Blump studied the papers they had recovered from the Iuzian high priest's chambers. When Zeke and Rickson rejoined their clerical friend, Blump gave them a run-down of their options. Apparently, the Iuzian had sent a group of adventurers off to the Cold Fens in search of an Iggwilvian artifact of interest to their demonic master. He had also been in contact with a Count Strahd von Zarovich of a barony in the Clatspurs, made mention of a slaving operation out of the Pomarj, and indicated that other Iuzians were involved in an operation to discover the secrets of the ruins of Castle Greyhawk. But, what interested them most of all was that the Iuzian priest had recorded several instances of cooperation between himself and Sir Bluto. It seemed that the ignoble knight and his men were responsible for sacking the pallisade fort and stealing all their horses, for abducting commoners, and for undermining the security of Lord Locks' realm. There was evidence that Sir Bluto's last employment had sent him to the City of Greyhawk to assist the servants of Iuz that planned to assault the ruins of the castle of the Mad Archmage.

    Bringing this information to the attention of Tornamir resulted in copies of the documents being sent to Perrenland where the Hetman confiscated Sir Bluto's lands until he should present himself before the court and offer a defense. Sir Bluto thus became known as Sans Pite (without land/property).

    After discussing their options, the heroes decided that pursuing Sans Pite was the best option. They also liked the idea of seeing the famed City of Greyhawk, the Gem of the Flanaess, with their own eyes.

    This campaign continues in White Plume Mountain, here: http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&p=59804#59804.

    SirXaris
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    Sat Jun 01, 2013 7:30 pm  

    Sir Xaris,

    Nice finale!

    Looks like Blump made it to the end after all. I like how the party had several avenues to explore after finding the clerics journal. I'm looking forward to seeing the next chapter in your campaign.

    Later

    Argon
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    Sat Jun 01, 2013 8:12 pm  

    Thanks, Argon. I just posted the first installment in White Plume Mountain. It has proven quite entertaining for me and the players, though they have felt quite frustrated at times, as well. Evil Grin

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    Wed Jun 26, 2013 3:43 pm  

    he, just fished reading all the kobold battles. Epic, even with kobolds! I loved it.
    GreySage

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    Thu Jun 27, 2013 7:41 am  

    ragnar wrote:
    he, just fished reading all the kobold battles. Epic, even with kobolds! I loved it.


    Thanks, Ragnar. I had a blast pitting those little nasties against the PCs and I think my players had a lot of fun, too, despite learning lots of lessons the hard way. Cool

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    Thu Jun 27, 2013 8:20 am  

    A new spin on the old Tucker's Kobolds theme. I love the classics!!!
    GreySage

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    Thu Jun 27, 2013 10:15 am  

    ragnar wrote:
    Well, just getting into this; I'm about halfway actually, but who's counting? Anyway, pretty cool I really like how deadly it is! Is this from the original B2 module and just adapted, or is it the remake one?


    To answer your question from the other thread:

    I am using the original B2, The Keep on the Borderlands module, but I've added lots of stuff. I took some inspiration from Return to tKotB, but nothing specific - just attitudes of individual NPCs. My inspiration for the ruined watchtower (replacing the Cave of the Unknown) was a map I found online and the original Conan movie. I added Sir Bluto Sans Pite as there wasn't much background on him and he fit as a higher-level foil for the PCs - someone they could love to hate and hunt down in later adventures. Evil Grin

    I've had lots of fun with bad guys like the kobolds, the evil cleric in the Keep (whom I named Akkub), Sir Bluto, the Tiger Nomads, and the Mad Hermit. Razz

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    Thu Jun 27, 2013 12:31 pm  

    I can tell. TPK Central!!!
    GreySage

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    Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:33 pm  

    For further tales featuring this group of adventurers, please see the following two links:

    White Plume Mountain
    http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=5610

    Against the Giants
    http://www.canonfire.com/cf/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=5809

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    Sun Jul 20, 2014 12:04 am  

    SirXaris,

    You say the Keep is here:



    I have this in another old thread and felt it may be helpful here, as well.

    Feel free to embed it in your opening post here, if you like.
    GreySage

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    Sun Jul 20, 2014 8:40 pm  

    DrassustheGuant,

    That's great! Thanks! Happy

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    Sun Jul 20, 2014 8:43 pm  

    My pleasure, Sir Xaris.

    I've been away from the forum for a long time but hope to be back with regularity now.
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