Shaintar J&L The Shattered Warband

harvest moon 32nd
night

Game day 3/20/2015. So true to form our session was delayed by nearly two hours due to intractability by certain members of the group. The kid seemed hell bent on assaulting the main gates. Even the Paladin told him that was suicide.

It was finally determined that Anton would get the wagon up to the city wall and light it on fire. Once it was on fire he would make his way over the wall on his own; it would appear he has a potion that will let him fly for a short amount of time. The rest of us were to wait for the guards to leave the wall on the south side streets and then using Hodor as an elevator scale the wall. That nearly worked as expected. Rake, Esska, Abe & I had made the top of the wall before we were noticed. As I thought our goal was to get into the city I jumped from the wall to a lower rooftop; and from there to the ground inside the wall. Abe, & Esska followed; Rake chose to attack the guards who had noticed us. Hodor managed to get the others to the top of the wall as this was happening; the paladin followed Rake and the kid followed the rest of us. On the ground Esska jumped out in front to scout the way; not knowing the city at all I was forced to follow. Hodor climbed the wall last. Once over he simply dropped back to the ground.

Esska noticed a dark figure running into a building in front of us; and started to slowly move past it. That same figure then jumped back of the building leaving the doors open and letting out a band of zombies. He tried to hit Esska; failed and was cut down by her counter stroke. The zombies themselves were quickly dispatched but at an expenditure of spell power which we will be hurting over later. We regroup and begin out trek to the church which as the center of town is our goal.

At this time Rake and Dimidiate are fighting the two archers on the wall and get led off out of sight by the retreat and fire tactics of the elves. After a bit Rake come up on us from the darkness telling us that Dimidiate is surrounded by zombies and what may be a caster. We backtrack to where Rake left him only to find that the zombies are dead and the caster is a prisoner. They quickly ask him where the winged ranger leader is and get told that Johan has him chained up like a pet. But not where, as that wasn’t really the question. We again start for the church.

Arriving at the central square Esska notices Anton on the far side waving at us from an alley. Attempting to navigate the alleys around to his position led nearly to disaster. He were found by Johan and the Golden Brinchie crossing the road leading to the main gates. The very fight we wanted to avoid at all costs. They had several archers, four elven spearmen, and swordsmen as well. And that was just the first wave. Some came in on us from behind and a third group came up on us from the church side of the main road. The group from the church side of the road had a caster in it as well as more archers.

Hodor, Esska, & Dimidiate advanced on the Johan group. Rake fled up the side street in their direction but out of the line of fire. Flanking maneuver I was informed later. I never noticed him again till the end of the fight. Abe & I advanced on the church group. As a rear guard action I was middling successful. I had my ass handed to me by every one of their fighters but managed to survive; mostly because Anton shot them from cover while they were distracted by me. I’m told the main fight was nearly a disaster. The Golden Brinchie and Johan both managed to evade any serious wounding by anyone who hit them. Then they quietly walked away when they were done with us.

Horns blowing off in the direction of the church forced us to abandon the fight. Abe and I were heavily wounded, some of the others had taken wounds but were given healing in the fight so they were more mobile than I was at this point. It was at this time that I first noticed that Anton had a friend tagging along with him. I still haven’t figured out how they hooked up but it would seem he is a friendly guard from the Steel estate. The guard led us through the city by alley ways to some warehouse he called Steel’s ‘but not on paper’.

It would appear that our initial assessment that all of the council are corrupt ‘may’ yet be incorrect. The elf woman Jules took full control sometime after we left for Farwatch. The guard does not know how but what she says must be followed by the other two. (At least from what he told us.) We were left there; he went to find his employer. An hour passed and healing attempts happened. As far as I know everyone is fully healed. He and a woman identified as Steel’s daughter return after a while. She assured us that Steel was still willing to uphold the oath to support the rangers’ charter which he signed. I can’t tell if he thinks the other human leader will but she seemed to think that some of the human guards from the other group could be neutralized in some fashion. The guard also mentioned that wagons had been moving around sense the fight. One looked like it contained Samael and his portal boxes. They were heading in the direction of the church. Which incidentally Johan commentated when he was named captain of the city guard. Yes that’s right the Red Store’s highest known operative in Greenvale is now the Captain of the guard. And the Rangers’ have been labeled as the ones who spread the plague. Fitting.

Rake was sent out on a scouting mission. He came back later stating that Johan had shot at him from the bell tower of the church. And that Jules is now there as well with a company of her personal guard. That would seem to be our next goal; but we now face even deeper odds than we did before. End of night.

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Harvest moon 22nd - 31st
travel and intel

Game day 3/13/2015. We picked up with the start of the fight laid out in front of us; the two builders who had slipped away were being attacked by over a dozen humans and that dwarf I had spoken to a few days ago. It was clear from his commands that they were to be taken alive. We managed to take the dwarf alive and one of the humans surrendered to us instead of being crushed by Hodor. Both of the Builders were recovered alive and more or less unharmed. The bruises from the blows to the head should heal quickly.

There was a handy wagon that they humans had with them; I would think for the transportation of these builders that our now actually thinking of us as friends. Anton and Esska once getting a look at him recognize the Dwarf as “Clay” one of the red store gang who killed their leader in the rangers; an elf named Leandron. Clay and the human who is apparently just a hired thug were both shackled to the wagon for transport.

As he was knocked unconscious at the end of the battle the priest used his powers to draw memories from his mind. We learned that his leader; one Johan who the group told me is another one of the ones who killed their leader, is waiting for him to return to Greenvale the Rangers home base. We learned that Johan is working with some Shayakar witch for reasons which Clay was not informed of. Clay was asked if others were involved in the Greenvale mission, we received the answer that the elf sorcerer, the golden Brinchie, and the alchemist had their own mission but would likely be returning to Greenvale before his return. By this time the priest had spent all of his power and Clay looked to be waking from the blow to the head. At first we had thought to drop Clay off with the law in Serenity for his crimes against the Rangers; but on the trip back to town Anton realized that for once we have something over on the red store. We have one of theirs prisoner and they don’t know about it. We ran the wagon around town while Rake, the priest, and the paladin entered town to gather food and were rejoined on the west road to Greenvale.

Having passed Serenity on the 23rd we arrived back in Greenvale on the 30th in the late afternoon. As we don’t know what is going on here we left the wagon out of sight and the rangers returned to the headquarters on foot. We found the gates open, and no signs of activity in the courtyard. Rake wearing his new ring entered the garrison alone and scouted it out. Every building which had clothing or blankets was ransacked; all of the food stores were gone and the ranger’s new commander and flying elf called Zaro was nowhere to be found. His nest; which being in a tree is hard to get to is the only one which has not been trashed.

We entered the garrison and kept it as dark as we could. We set up shop in the cellar so that we could use the earth itself for insulation and locked our prisoners to a structural pillar. In an effort to learn what has happened here it was decided that some of the group should Head off to this builder cavern that I had heard of previously. The new builders were left with the main group. Upon arrival it was discovered that some sort of battle has been fought on this ground yet again. The friendly Builder Samael is gone; taken or killed it is unclear. He does seem to have given quite the accounting of himself; there are Arclance burst-fire marks all along the corridors of the cavern system and in the lowest chamber Anton found the remains of ‘his’ golem Jarvis. It had been cut in half at the waist and was only able to tell us in the briefest of terms that Samael was gone had had been for weeks. It did tell us that it was dark elf casters who did the assault. All of the arcmancy equipment which has been stockpiled here by Samael is gone; including three gate devices which Anton thinks might be functional by now.

Again we returned to the garrison; shortly after arrival sic ragged figures emerged from the twilight and requested admittance and food if we had any to spare. Some of them were apparently known to the Rangers. The Orc madam of a brothel and one of her girls seemed to be quite popular with Esska. Not sure why; I didn’t get told the reason. We learned from the orc that the members of the church of light had been set up in her establishment to create a hospital for the ill. Weaselman the Rangers retainer was with them giving what aid he could. Anton the priest and I decided to go into southtown and find these people. When I asked if anyone knew how to get to the brothel the priest who looks all of 10 pipes up with I’ve been there. After slapping him on the back; nearly sending him to the floor, I finally have something I can respect about the kid. The journey to the brothel was short and soon we found ourselves on the second floor talking to the higher ranking priest and shortly thereafter to weaselman. At first I tried to hang out in the corridor and listen to both conversations; in two different rooms but I was drawn into the one between Anton and Weaselman when he suggested he wanted to ask questions which did not need to be overheard. Zaro it is now known sent off letters to the rangers after we left Farwatch. Once within just a few days of when we left and the other just last week. Five days ago after several weeks of no contact with his wife and child Zaro chose to fly over the walls of the city; he has not been seen or heard of sense. Best case scenario is he is in prison for breaking the quarantine, worst is after he landed and was out of sight of the southtown skies he was murdered.

We have learned that the dwarven council members have both been exiled from the city; and that the two humans and the elf woman claimed that the city was to be quarantined for the protection of the city. The commoners seem to think the city is leaving them to die and rumor has it that the plague started in the southtown area. Southtowners’ claim that it started in the city itself so we have no real information there. There was an attempt to get intel by the priest by entering the city by way of a tunnel system that was known of by the rangers. When he returned he claimed that the voice of my old caravan boss Gandogar told him to leave the tunnels and if he did not leave it would be a one way trip.

Late evening of the 31st of harvest moon it was decided that Clay was too much trouble to remain alive; we had no secure way to hold him, not enough rations to feed him and the new refugees under our wing, and if he managed to escape we would simply have to face him again. While we were debating wither it is within the rangers’ charter to execute a prisoner for crimes he was involved with Hodor simply did it. Some did not like this. But it had to be done. We left the garrison in the hands of the refugees, told them to keep the hireling alive as he knows nothing but he was given coin for a job which went badly for him. We as a group reentered the tunnel system. We had been determined to breach the city and find the three council members to get answers. Both to wither they were being controlled; or if they had been supplanted by evil forces. This time Anton was given the vision of Gandogar. From the description after it sounds like Anton saw and spoke with him for some moments before the rest of us noticed he had stopped.

The gist of the conversation as reported is that Greenvale cannot be entered by the tunnel system; we would be in fact traveling to some reverse plane by way of the tunnels. That place dubbed ‘Greyvale’ by Anton is fully under the control of the void. There would be no return from that place. Again we were forced to retreat. This time we returned to the village streets to set up a watch on the walls. If we cannot go under them the only option left is over. Ladders and ropes have been recovered from the garrison and we set a watch to count patrols and gather routes taken. End of night.

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8th harvest moon - 22nd

Game day 2/27/15. I arrived a bit late do to traffic so I missed some of the opening set up however we started in the small village where we had left the rest of the team while searching for the vampire. Of the villagers only something in the neighborhood of twenty four remained alive of a population of over two hundred. They didn’t take much convincing to pack up their kit and get back to civilization. The trip back to Farwatch took until the 10th around mid-day.

The stay in Farwatch was fairly short, we resupplied and cremated that poor dead magi. His effects are still with the group; they are on one of the pack mules. We found lodging for the refugees somewhere in the city and learned that the road from Greenvale was officially completed. There is a rumor of sickness in Greenvale.
We left on the 12th. On the 19th we arrived in Serenity. When we got into town the party split up to some extent. The religious types took off to the church to check in, and the rangers went off to their chapterhouse. Abe and I went to the dive. While I was in the bar there was another dwarf there who seemed to be hiring mercs. It seemed like he was talking about a site to the north seemingly near the ‘darkness tainted’ site that the group is looking for. I tried to go over and talk to the guy. Typical dwarf dark hair and armor. Apparently I looked drunker than I thought I was; he refused to even give me the sales pitch. He left as soon as I turned away from his table. I finished my drink left some coins on the bar top and followed him outside. He was walking north through town I followed to the nearest ally, stepped into it to piss then had Abe follow by sent. He walked up the street for a ways, turned right and stopped at another dive bar. Not wanting to be seen again I returned to the rest of the group. They didn’t seem to care that this guy was gathering mercs to go to something near our destination. We left town shortly thereafter.

Using my skills with maps and trails we made good time to the desired direction. We even managed to come across the visible traces of a fire’s smoke shortly after noon the third day. Rake and Abe went forward to scout the area; Rake using his new ’be small ring’ and Abe just there for backup. The source of the smoke was a small log cabin with an A-frame roof. There seemed to be four windows with shutters, one door and a guard outside near the door. Rake snuck up to the closest wall and scaled it to the window ledge. Looking inside he spotted four beds and three more humans, there were x-bows set up for each man and a bar that could be thrown to seal the door, but it was not in place. While he was doing this Abe sniffed at some of the trees more or less out of site if the door. He found dwarven smell as well as human smell.

Upon returning to the group Rake supplied what he saw and I supplied that Abe had noticed dwarven smells as well as the humans. The group decided to sneak up in mass, with three horses, and no one designed for stealth. On the side of the cabin there was a small stream, from this I was able to draw out some ice to power my damage field spell. We are now covered in ice spikes. As I am casting the first x-bow bolts come ringing through the group. No one is hit but the sneaking is clearly a failure. We spring into action at this point as we are on the far side of the house from the door; we had tried to approach from the chimney side.

I moved forward toward the house with Abe ranging out in front of me, he made it under the closest window long before I was even close. Most of the group was trying for the doors but that would be the long way; I cannonballed through the closest window. I must have surprised the guy manning that one as he took flying dwarf full in the face, one of my icicles buried itself deep in his chest and he never moved again. Abe followed through the window but was unable to jump on anything.

The fight at the door was raging; Esska managed to break the door to the point that the bar could be removed from the outside. Our paladin and priest prevented the retreat of their forces while Esska demanded their surrender. They refused and tried to knife the paladin. Of the four none of them managed to stay alive after that. Further examination of the cabin revealed a trap door under the bear rug in the center of the floor.

Opening the trap door to darkness the priest summoned his lightbulb power. Which allowed us to get down the ladder. Rake chose to give the ring to Hodor so that he could get into the cabin and into the room below. That room was rather large actually it was as wide as the cabin, and maybe three times as deep. While we were getting ourselves situated small orange lights became visible out in the darkness.

Those small lights quickly became visible as a group of zombies surged forward. Each had one of these orange lights in its chest and silver lines running all over its body. Anton later decided that the arc fire technique needed to make zombies was unusual and needed a tremendous amount of surgical work on each victim. While we engaged this threat a necromancer stepped up and cast against the priest. That spell seemed to have a massive effect, the boy was severely winded for the rest of the fight. Our paladin ignored all of the zombies in order to get to the necromancer faster, which might have prevented him from getting off any more really big spells. He did some casting but much of it was ineffectual after that first big one.

Being more overall targets this fight lasted longer than the first but the outcome was the same; no bad-guys survived us. In the rear of the chamber we discovered two dwarven looking creatures with red skin. Builders of course but I had never encountered them, that led to a discussion of how the group knows of them and letting the newest ones free. They seem to be non-hostile; they want to colonize the world not destroy it and reform it to their liking. They may like this Samael that Anton keeps talking about. We offered to take them back to Serenity as we were going that way and proceeded to destroy anything that was not being taken with us. We burned all of the corpses.

Back at last night’s camp we made dinner and set watches. During the third watch Anton noticed that the two had left; they had been there earlier but now they were gone. He woke me up and Abe and I picked up their trail fairly quickly. Gathering the group we followed this westward. When we met up with the road which was in that direction we heard fighting and saw our two builders and a bunch of humans going at it. That same dwarf from town was there leading the humans. That was the end of the night. Game time is early am on the 22nd of harvest moon for the start of the next game which may be two weeks.

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7th harvest moon

Game day 2/13/2015. After much squabbling regarding the treasures recovered in the tower which amounted to a library of necromantic tomes and four die advances of gold and silver, the heroes commit the dead child to the flames; fed by the necromantic tomes. Seemed rather fitting really.

Anton, Hodor, and the paladin (all unavailable this week) were set to guarding the girl child back to her village and getting them ready to retreat to the larger city to the south. There were enough killed that the village cannot sustain itself any longer. Barely 20% of the residents survived the ghoul outbreak. The rest of the group tracked the vampire throughout the day. We traveled through the cracks and regained the road, but the trail never entered the village so he didn’t stop for a second late night snack. Once on the road he traveled for about a mile then fled south again into a wooded area. Near dusk we encountered a small clearing on the edge of a hillock. That hillock looked to have an opening behind some thorn bushes and as we were prepping ourselves to enter the opening the Troglodyte exited the cave. Abraham who had been sniffing near the bushes and Rake charged in and tried to hit the creature but didn’t do much but annoy it. It removed something from its hand (later to be discovered by Rake) and shape changed from a small troglodyte into a large troll. It then proceeded to crush everyone in its reach with a sweep attack. Abraham took three wounds from that blow.

Upon seeing his furry companion hit like this Sliv charged into the battle as well. Tossing a massive upper cut with his hammer into the cod piece of the monster. I know I did sizeable damage with the blow but the monster was able to soak all of the wounds. At this time the priest chose to turn into a light bulb. Which seemed to damage the creature. Rake used the distracted creature as a climbing surface to get higher ground on the hillock and then attacked it from above further confusing it. Esska lost control and started hacking at it wildly while Abraham backed out of its reach. Abe tried to knock the creature over several times but didn’t have enough strength to overpower it till at the very last he managed to jump high enough to bite its throat. The rest of us pulled back a bit and tried to heal ourselves. The Priest was mostly successful in this endeavor. Abe has one wound point left but everyone else is good. We then entered the cave itself to find a rather small area which appeared completely empty. Abraham started growling as soon as he entered the opening and I had him stay in the door while we tried to decide what was going on. Esska Thought she caught a slight shadow on one wall so she asked the priest to increase his light production; what emerged was a blast of pure sunlight, followed by an agonized scream and a burning smell from the rear corner. Followed closely by the invisible vampire turning to dust from the intense damage caused by the flash.

We have recovered his staff, which is magical. The twisted staff is not evil as far as anyone can determine but it does grant an additional parry bonus over a normal staff.
We have recovered the ritual spell book that was used to create the white silver resistant werewolf. (I still think this must be burned; I was outvoted.) And Rake recovered what has be determined to be a ring of shrink. This also has a secondary effect which sounds a lot like haste but I could be wrong. The senses get sharpened and the wearer’s movement seems to be increased.

We spent the majority of the night returning to the village; arrived after 3 in the AM. We slept a full eight hours to rest up some of the fatigued members of the group. The next game session will start there.

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6th harvest moon
dusk

Game day 1/30/2015. From the journal of Sliv one-eye; 6th of harvest moon. I have been traveling south for a few weeks now. Lord Dranak has told me that the area known as the cracks is overrun with darkness. I have been trying to determine exactly where for a few days now and today at dusk from a nearby ridge I heard the rapid report of some kind of energy weapon. By the time I got to the location I thought the sounds were coming from there was no movement to be seen but I was able to see a rather large tower with lights coming from the ground floor and from the windows at the top floor.

I approached the tower carefully and entered it shortly after a massive booming noise came down from the top floors. Just inside I encountered an unexpected person; my cousin Anton from Anvil. At first he didn’t recognize me, must be all of the travel dust; but once I identified myself he lowered his creepy spear thing and we started running up the stairs to get to the upper floors. Abraham thought it was quite fun, bouncing round in circles and slobbering on just about everything.

Unfortunately the tower was quite tall and being Dwarves the fight was effectively over by the time we arrived. There were the corpses of quite a few werewolves strewn about and one or two magi who had been killed; one of which is apparently on the ground having been pushed off the building by the paladin in order to try to stop some kind of ritual. Losing one caster apparently failed to stop the spell, the remaining three were able to continue. From what I was able to learn after the battle was over there was one werewolf who had been ensorcelled so that white silver no longer effected it. The magi’s who escaped took the book of spells which this ritual came from with them when they flew away. They can replicate the ritual in the future with a properly prepared alter and more white silver. There was some sort of broach that the priest was very interested in, up until it turned to dust and blew away on the breeze.

My old pal Hodor from Anvil is with the group as well. We will likely spend much of the night talking about old times and girls we once knew. I may have to share my pipe to stop Anton from ranting over some alchemist who got away from him. It turns out he was the cause of all of the shooting noises I’d heard at dusk. Anton hit the guy a few times but due to distance and plenty of healing potions the other guy was able to get away. There is some mention of a ‘Golden Brinchie’ trying to stab Anton in the back as well.

The priest was awfully interested in the belongings of some red robed magi on the floor below the top of this tower, it seems that he had been a team mate of the group as he is wearing the cloak of the rangers. He is beyond helping, it looks like he caught an explosion with his face.

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Ghouls through the cracks (5th-6th Harvest Moon 3123)
Odwyn ' s journals

We faced ghouls on the road to the cracks including a flesh render. A pack mule was slain and the wounds we received burned with some form of contagion almost immediately, but the healing light of Archanon cleansed the affliction. We burned the bodies and the mule before making haste to the village a half day away. As feared the village is nearly gone, victims to what came through the cracks. More ghouls came in the night. During the battle a trog broke in and stole a baby despite our best efforts to save her. We must wait till dawn to pursue the tracks. This was not the first infant taken. I pray we find them before it is too late. A local lass Wren volunteered to track the trog who took her infant sister and brought us to a lodge in the cracks nearly a day north of town. We found a passage shrouded in illusion of a stuffed grizzly bear. Passing through we encountered the red store agents. I was tasked to protect Wren while the others pursued. The grey ranger sorcerer Whitman was slain in the fight. The red store golden brinchie and alchemist Errol escaped for now. As soon as the other rangers return, paladin Dematadi and I will continue pursuit to rescue the stolen babies and deal with the red store agents.

By the time I finished bandaging Eska’s wound the others returned from chasing Errol and the golden brinchie which once again eluded us. The mage they fought near the top of the tower initially survived the fall and remained pinned to the ground by Dematadi ’ s blade. I attempted to tap his mind and saw a jumble of images; including a foreboding grey skinned man, rangers and the mage all fighting zombies, and the broach handed to a white furred claw. His mind was as fragmented as his body and I failed to learn their purpose here. Moments later a dwarf with a large dog appeared in the entryway, apparently a distant relative of Anton. There was a loud thud from the top of the tower and I ran to join the others who had found a hatch to the roof and engaged more foes. Upon discovery the foes began a terrible dark ritual which we failed to prevent. The broach and other white silver objects were turned to dust by the ritual and the white werewolf gained immunity to white silver. Upon reaching the battle, I could feel the light inside me grow to face the challenge. For the first time I became the light as a wave of light pulsed out and turned two werewolves to dust. The white werewolf was crushed by the ogres massive strength where white silver had no effect. A vampire and the trog that stole the baby escaped with the book and flew away. Dematadi reported the death of the baby to Wren who took it hard. I pray she finds strength in the light, for without her courage leading us here would have left the enemy unchallenged and the ritual a secret.

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housekeeping
raining leaves 10th - 15th

Game date 1/2/2015. The group spent some time arguing wither or not we could track flying werewolves… Seriously? They got away get over it. After that we covered up the depression where the plug was found and headed back towards town. After about four hours of marching we stopped for the night only to be surrounded by elves who clearly didn’t like that we were there at all. We managed to talk them into camp with the idea that we are all fighting the same people and shouldn’t be fighting ourselves. Course while talking to their leader Whitman used the term mistress when referring to the elf woman who is in charge of Greenvale. Only to get the most evil I’m going to kill you look from that very leader. (I was told later in the session by one of the other elves that at one point they had been an item, quite the problem as he was married at the time. Hey if the shoe fits wear it.)

While we were talking about the temple we spoke of the books and scrolls that I had removed from the library area; the elven magi took them and examined their pages. Two of the scrolls were apparently recruitment propaganda by the Shaya’Nar Empire during its first age. Those were fed to the fire as not being relevant. One of the scrolls seemed to be a listing of sacrifices made to particular lords and by which lower ranking members of the Empire. There was a book regarding the Shaya’Nar philosophical beliefs regarding how the races of darkness came to be, and there were other books which really didn’t get much discussion.

The following morning we led the elven patrol back to the temple watched as the elven mage opened it with a levitation spell and were given two escorts to leave the elven forest with. Apparently the human guide is not really liked much by the local elves as he will work for anyone willing to pay him. (Big deal.) The second day after leaving the temple we encountered an old deadfall with a cabin built up against it. Our paladin found it because of his detect evil ability. Once inside we found millions of flies, a dead body on a bed and covered in vomit, and some bad food on the table. With some searching we located some elven poetry, a diary, and an elven everwood bow. Our guides said to burn it so Anton built a bomb which he set off and engulfed the cabin in flames. We watched the flames for about an hour then left the site. It was during this part of the trip in which the guide told the group of how Whitman had insulted the elven leader by using the mistress term. I actually found it rather comical and may continue to do so if I ever meet this guy again.

The following day we managed to return to town. Our guides left us at the boarder of the forest and we stopped at the ranger HQ to report in. While we were there Whitman spent some time examining the bow I had located. It is Everwood just like my staff, and heavily carved with geometric patterns and lines. Upon magical examination it was determined to have magical properties as well. All range penalties are halved; range 18/36/72. 2d6+1 D6 minimum strength, and D8 minimum shooting die to use. As we have no other archers in the party Zaro was given the bow. (To jokes that Whitman was trying to bribe his new commander.) The priest and the paladin returned to town to report to their superior. None of the rangers attended that meeting.

The next morning the rangers returned to the mountain cave where Samael the builder is cleaning out the rubble. He has repaired many of the worker golems to help him rebuild the area. He has also located quite a collection of builder gear. Some of which is now set strategically in the tunnel system. Anton was able to gain more ammo for both his arc lance and his pistol. And Samael seemed sure that at some point we could get the portal functional again to try to recover Alphie who as far as we know is still lost. The morning of the 15th the religious members regrouped with the rangers to decide what our next course of action was to be. We decided that the ‘nexus of evil’ near Farwatch would be our next trip. The religious ones are convinced that they can find more than just our dark nexus there but they really made no sense when they were talking about it. That was the end of the session, the equipment gathering will be done by e-mail as no one likes doing that at the table. The group leaves by the north road the 16th.

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raining leaves the 10th
later the same day

Game day 12/12/2014. This week also started late due to scheduling issues. De thankfully had more players some with essence points to use. After the brief rest that was discussed the previous sessions end we returned to the underground temple. We decided to check the two doors we had not gone through the previous session. The door to the north as previously suspected was collapsed about half way down the corridor. The door on the right after a brief corridor broke off into a ‘y’ north easterly and south easterly. Surprisingly enough there was a lit lantern at the ‘y’. As we were trying to determine the reason the lantern was there a shabbily dressed man sized form stepped into the light and fired a crossbow at Whitman. Thankfully he missed. He then vanished into the darkness. He returned a few seconds later knocking over the lantern putting it out. He seemed to vanish into the NE branch at that time. We followed him down that branch only to fall subject to a pit trap. Esska fell some distance and was shaken by the landing. It took our paladin returning to the entrance and getting rope to recover Esska. While he was doing this the man reappeared at the ‘y’. Anton yelled at him about what he was going to do and he spun on the group and fired at the priest instead. Missing again. Whitman moved forward to the ‘y’ and saw the man running away. Trying a cantrip in an effort to trip him Whitman loosened his pants and dropped them round his knees. The tripping was successful; but the man simply loped away on all fours… Guess tripping a running werewolf isn’t that useful. After this we recovered Esska and jammed the pit trap closed. WE followed the NE corridor to the ending several hundred feet later. We located no doors or branches along the way and returned to the ‘y’.
The SE corridor wound around almost drunkenly. It may have been following an ore vain which had been played out in the distant past. It never seemed to change size it was always 20’x20’ but it did drop in elevation according to our dwarven alchemist. It eventually opened into that same underground pool that we had found earlier in the day. There was a door to the south that I think was not previously visible. There were two waterfalls in the room. One of which was running in reverse of all things. The downward one is suspected to be the same that we had walked through on the upper floor in the western tunnel.
The southern door was sheeted in gold the doors were engraved with a chalice. Suspecting that the werewolf was in this room we stopped long enough to meditative cast a few spells. Esska put up deflection and Whitman put up armor. When we opened the door we found a fairly large room with large glass collecting equipment along the ceiling. This would put us directly under the alter room with the drain holes in the floor. The tubing leads to a center location which had an earthen cup on a pillar. One of the glass pillars in the room which supported the tubing must have failed at some point. One section of the tubing had broken and fallen to the ground just inside the entrance. There were shelving units along three walls of the room, the shelves contained alchemical ingredients, scrolls, books, and fourteen ceremonial daggers.
There were also five werewolves in the room. This room also caused the holy types distress. They spent the entire fight having to make spirit checks. When they failed they took wounds. The werewolves themselves had the appearance of people on a mission. They were spread out with lanterns on several of the shelves and on the floor near the cup pillar. They at first seemed hesitant to attack us. Keeping back for a few seconds while we entered the room. They did advance at which point Whitman tried to blast the first one who moved. I hit but I didn’t get enough damage to kill it, once this happened the others were able to move closer. Esska tried to boost her strength, ended up mind burning herself. Neither the paladin nor the priest hit anything in that opening salvo. Anton took aim on the one Whitman hit but with his arc lance on full auto completely missed. There was a large white werewolf who didn’t seem to be interested in fighting. He hung back and after another bit of flailing on the heroes part ordered the others to retreat behind the shelving. At this point we were drawn deeper into the room which must have been part of the plan. The werewolves sprung out of hiding and knocked out two of the lanterns granting light. Whitman tried to use his lightning spell on the white one and another that was near the leader. All I managed to do was vaporize a section of the shelving and one of the glass support columns. More glass tubing rained down from the ceiling creating a greater mess in the center of the room. The werewolves again broke cover; and attacked. This time they seemed like they were trying to overwhelm the group but Whitman and Esska noticed that the white one was holding some kind of book. I tried unsuccessfully to knock it loose at which point that one broke ranks and fled towards the doors. I cast another lightning bolt; failing to wound the leader and Anton missed with his arc lance as well. It took a swipe at Anton on the way out the door but did not slow down. Another broke and followed the leader out. He was also missed by all. We killed the remaining three but Whitman instantly lost interest in the engagement as I fear that they got what they wanted. Yelling ‘bad dog stay’ at the one who he had just turned his back on to try to stop the leader’s escape Whitman started to leave the fight. The werewolf managed to hit me which stopped me after one step. This left enough space for the priest to get between and continue attacking it. That one was the last to fall. Esska dropped into a berserker rage at the end, impaling one of the werewolves and decapitating the other.
We all walked back out of the room and Whitman barked at Anton for not trying harder to stop the leader. Anton replied in kind.
As the werewolves, even wounded; are much faster than us on foot we didn’t even try to pursue. Once all of the team were out of the room Whitman and Anton both returned to the room to look for clues. On the east wall we found jars of alchemical ingredients. Some of which were still useable so Anton took those. The south wall had a scroll rack. It is all written in the same unknown language so Whitman took the five or six which looked to be the best preserved. The west wall had the book case. Whitman took the three books from that which also seemed to be the least damaged by time. As I was checking this Anton was investigating that cup on the pillar. He eventually picked up the earthen cup. It was very well made, even down to a structure in the grip which liked like a gemstone. But it was just clay. This cup disintegrated when lifted from the pillar.
With a keening wail a spirit was released from the pillar. Seeing this Whitman used his cone of cold to hit the creature and the pillar. I hit doing two wounds on a creature that used three bennies to soak… It tried to touch Anton and failed then started retreating towards the south wall. Anton blasted it with his arc lance destroying it. At this point the two holy types felt the unholy taint vanish.
We do not know how this creature was chained to the temple, or how it was evil but results are good. When we returned to the entrance we were informed that the two werewolves who escaped us and a third who was above managed to evade our rear guard. This was effectively the end of the night. There was a bit of book keeping but there isn’t anything from that of interest. The temple was closed again.

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Raining leaves 10th

Game day 11/28/2014. The game night started late due to scheduling conflicts and only three players made it. The paladin, the priest and Whitman entered the opening about 10 am on the morning of the 10th of raining leaves. The priest made the determination that this complex may be one thousand years old. The large room that was directly below the hole was roughly square with eight pillars in the center. It had four exits in the primary directions the one to the south had the most decorations on the bronze doors. The doors were carved; the left one was a warrior in full armor sword laid across his palm, the other was a fey in robes with fangs. The paladin determined it was a vampire based on his rolls.

When we opened this set of doors we discovered rank upon rank of armored forms standing at attention. Four columns seven ranks deep. When we crossed the threshold Whitman looked into the visor of the closest form and learned it was skeletal. ‘Nobody touch nothing.’ Less than a second later the priest is pawing at one of the shields to attempt to discover its heraldic device… All hell broke loose at this point.

Whitman was able to retreat closer to the door from where he had moved once at that location he cast a spell destroying the three in a line closest to him. The other two were not so fortunate. Neither managed to move before the skeletons animated and were surrounded instantly. Whitman too was partially surrounded, but managed to slowly retreat towards the doors flinging offensive spells and casting armor on himself in that second round of combat. Jokers are great. Once the armor spell was up Whitman began casting towards his partners frequently. It was the best way to catch the most skeletons in his area of effect. Using the selective application saved the party last night. That fight was brutal and perhaps we should have returned to the surface but I didn’t want to.

After some healing was accomplished; we set out south again. The east wall of the room had a mural depicting a forest, which became plains, then farmland, and a happy village, then the happy village was sacked and became a bloodbath by the south wall. The west wall mural depicted the same imagery however it was a forested fey village not a human one. At the far end of the chamber we found another set of doors; the same two figures were carved into them but this time they were kneeling facing the opening; clearly in obeisance to whatever lay behind the doors.

The doors when opened revealed another room of similar proportions with a stair leading near the center and slopped floors running towards what can only be described as drains in the center. On the far side was a massive alter; it took up maybe thirty foot of the room. Behind this was a mural of some massive being cloaked in red with dripping fangs, and claws. Smaller beings in the mural depicted the races of darkness worshiping at his feet. Both the paladin and the priest were visibly upset at this image and we were forced to leave w/o examining the room further. Upon closing the doors Whitman noticed that the inner side of the doors were carved as well. The warrior on the inside is replaced with a werewolf. One can only surmise it is the same being.

Upon returning to the main room we advised the men above that we would be continuing on and chose the west doors. These led into a corridor which went straight for some ways. About half way down there was a man-made waterfall draining from the ceiling into a grate on the floor. Whitman used his spell casting ability to keep the torch alight as he passed through the falls, the others seemed to be harmed by the water. Past this was a circular hole in the floor with an old rusty ladder leading down. Thankfully it wasn’t deep as none of us made the climb rolls. There was a passage from there that was northerly in direction. Following that it turned towards the east and continued further then exited into a thirty by twenty chamber with a spiral stair leading up and a door facing south. When we passed through the door we found a massive underground pool with what seemed like a ledge along the east wall of the chamber. At this moment the priest was grabbed by a werewolf and held at sword point as it asked how many of us there were and why we were in its domain.

Seeing one of his party held captive Whitman cast another spell missing both; the werewolf and the priest. The werewolf simply moved too fast for the spell to connect. And the priest took a cut which while painful was not life threatening. Moving into the door frame Whitman used another spell and devastated the werewolf in one blow. At this time it was apparent that we had to abandon the search. We tried the staircase, it led to a collapsed corridor facing south. We were forced to backtrack to the ladder and then the waterfall again. Upon reaching the surface we had the members of the team seal the hole and took a breather to regain some essence as both Whitman and the priest were nearly spent.

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Raining leaves 5th - 10th
ended early morning

Whitman Chyry the grey ranger was dispatched from Kythros to build up the reduced ranger ranks in Greenvale. As he is a sorcerer he was also tasked with studying the nexus under the mountain when it is excavated. The friendly builder Samael is leading the team doing that work. It is far from complete when Whitman arrived two weeks prior to this date.

All of the rangers from Greenvale except Captain Zaro made the journey back to Anvil to bury Gandogar in his family crypts. They were due to return on or about the 5th when the session started.

Also new in town is a Paladin of light; he seems to be there to assist the young priest. However there is also an older priest who seems to have taken up the church, so young priest may be out of a job. The paladin had a vision the morning of the 5th regarding a source of darkness outside of town in the direction of Serenity. As he had nothing else to do Whitman joined the pair of light workers on their day trip.

When we arrived we found that the returning rangers had fallen into some kind of trap. They were at the side of a pond apparently fighting fish that were connected to vines. The Paladin immediately identified the creature as darkspawn and we joined the fight. During the fight a wolf creature leaves its den near the side of the pond, it has spines like a porcupine so it is also darkspawn.

into this fight Hodor the ogre; who has been missing for months returns to the world thinking only an hour or two has passed. The newly reformed group kills off all of the fish things, and destroy the eggs in the bottom of the pond then return to town.

During the return trip Hodor announces that there are more dark sources that he has sworn to destroy, when we reach the HQ and get maps he points out one near us and two others near other ranger outposts. The following morning after getting a guide from the local fay leader we set out in search of the dark source that Hodor is talking about. The journey takes three days during our night watches it would seem that we are being watched by something that is low slung and long; seemingly a wolf maybe… The morning of the third day we think we are close to the source and split off into groups to search around. Hodor and Anton find a depression in a hillside which sparks their interest, After removing some leaves and other junk we find a pull ring which Hodor grabbed and pulled on. It is a large slab of stone, which required a pulley system to remove. Under this is our source of darkness, the Priest casts a summoning, creating two ‘kids with lights’ who promptly refuse to go into the hole. What is it with Priests and kids!?

That was the end of the evening. The summoning was done meditatively so the summons will stay around for a while, while he was doing that Esska and Whitman also cast deflection and armor on themselves. Meditatively of course; both with raises if I’m not mistaken.

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