This site is an online accumulation of the Post Reports for my current ongoing D&D Campaign - for anyone who might be interested in reading them.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Meet 57, Adv 4.2, 8/4/18

The group made their way further up Damlagast's Tower, finding what was to be found and being careful about it. So far they've had some good luck and decent dice rolls, making what combat and traps here achievable with being too difficult. One of the players had mentioned that it seemed "easy" but they were then reminded that a single bad roll with the ghoul fight and we would have had a TPK.

Write up follows:


An emaciated greyish skinned orc bust from behind the table at Connal’s side, the Monk somersaulting backwards to stand side by side with his companions, scrabbling at the air before charging forwards. It hit the line and bit scratched and snarled at Einar, the half-orc druid grunting in pain before his limbs froze in place. In return the ghoul was assaulted by magic and blade but most weapons just bounced off it’s skin. Meanwhile Barb reported that ANOTHER ghoul was in kitchen and trying to get out! The barbarian dug in her feet and raged, swelling up in anger and shoving the ghoul back inside.

The combat continued with the first undead getting hit again by flying bullets and Connal’s fists, but it angered the wobbling dead thing who turned its anger on the monk and paralyzed him with numerous scratches and bites. Shimlagesh begged it with a blast of cold and then a final sling bullet from Darius’ enchanted weapon tipped it over sideways.

They pried Mettle, the enchanted blade from Einar’s hand and slid it to Barb who grabbed it, waited for the party to get ready, and then moved back so the group could assault the last ghoul. It had a large metal pot cover that it used to block one of the bullets, was hit with the second, and spells finished the damned thing off as it fell over finally dead.

Healing was doled out and we had to wait a few minutes for the paralysis to wear off. From there Shim and Avulstein went over the undead being deciding to take the two hearts and 4 eye balls for now for possible alchemic purposes at another time. It was a bit after 6 based upon our best guess when we left the dining room, kitchen, and pantry area (picked over long ago) and made our way up to the 5th floor.

This was the first floor and landing where we did not see broken dwarven skeletons or signs of violence. The door was shut here and a peer under showed no heat sources beyond. Feeling squeamish, we continued on our way up the stairs and decided to come back to this floor at another time.

At the 6th floor we saw 3 blasted dwarven skeleton’s here, bits of melted metal around them. The door was blasted open and fire and lightning score marks littered everywhere. Just inside there were even more dwarven remains scattered around what we assumed was the orcish wizard’s private chambers. From the placement of the many bodies we could tell he was backing up to the next room here and looking inside the entire chamber which was once the wizard’s library, had been the victim of a terrible fireball. Five more dwarven skeletons had been blasted into the shelves and walls, and in the center of the room was a pair of worn but still in good condition orcish made high soft boots.

Barb braved the boots, picked them up and tried them on. As she slid them on they changed color from dusky brown to forest green and shrunk down to better fit her feet. Some tests showed that while wearing them, her feet felt no effects from fire or heat, but had nothing to do with the rest of her body. Weird but ok.

From here we went to go further up to the 7th floor but around the 3rd or 4th step up, Darius ended up disappearing! As for the fighter, he was actually downstairs and stepping off the last step to the 1st floor. Odd. He turned to go upstairs. Others also tried it and they too ended up down at the base of the tower. We tried throwing rocks, stepping over, jumping – nothing allowed us to get past the 3th or 4th step.

We decided to go back to the 3rd floor and try out the two doors in the statue room while Shim gave the pictures on the 2nd floor a once over, seeing nothing new. Back in the statue room, Barb tossed the parts of the statue down the steps while we listened to the scratching from the north door. We decided to check out the south door instead. Once sure it wasn’t trapped, Barb opened it and got out of the way just in time before she was immolated by a flame blast – getting singed, not burned. But an animated chain floated out of the room and attacked Barb who was getting whipped about the neck. Shim froze a section of the chain and concentrated on hitting that part, while the half-orc fought with it. It took a few minutes before it was over and we could take better stock of things. The door to the room had shut again during the fight.

Darius wanted to try it next, but we figured on maybe blocking the door in some way so that it might impeded the potential fire. While the fighter was making a set of thin shims, the party was getting bits of wood tossed down from the 4th floor to the 1st so we could eventually light the furnace. After a half hour of fiddling around, Darius went to open the door and the fighter received a full on blast of flame before we tried other ways on opening the door. Ropes and chains and looping it around the statue bases helped and we got the door open.

It was a study but it had been lightly picked over. Two dwarven skeletons were here, necks crushed. We looked around the desk, eventually discovered a secret compartment, and took a handful of old orcish silver coins and a partially dissolved and concentrated potion labelled Flight. Nice. There were two scroll cases in here but both of them had only fragments of dried paper within.

We went back to the room, opened the north door and a stone lizard head and arm statue piece came flying out towards the statue! Only the head made it as Darius was able to smash the arm before it could attach, and we fought the statue here, eventually smashing it to pieces.

Some healing was dispensed and we checked out the room, another study but this time the secret desk part had been listed up and the dwarves had left a nasty note for anyone to find.

It was about 8 and we were getting tired. The tower was cold, just under 50 degrees and we were going to work on the furnace, but wanted to check out the 5th floor with the closed door just in case. Once there we opened the door, seeing a shirt hall with three doors at the end, all of them had been forced open. The first room on the right was a servant’s bedroom, ransacked. Closet door was closed.

The next room on the left was set up similar, bedding slashed and closet busted in. Some orcish underwear still in decent shape – not much else. The center door showed a slightly larger servant’s chamber – an orcish skeleton near the back in a set of faded robes and three flatbow bolts in her chest. Dreadlocked hair and necklace led us to believe it was a woman. We checked out the room while Barb looked over the fallen orc.

Found a secret false bottom in one of the drawers that had a small scattering of coins and some dangle copper earrings that looked like lightning bolts. Barb was sure the girl was wearing an orcish whistle and she eased it off, and in her pocket were a pile of battered letters she had been communicating with her boyfriend at some not too distant village. We read the letters and got some ideas of what the surrounding defenses might have been like, thinking that the orcish fort mentioned might be a good place for the third Kobold Warren to be.

We took everything that we wanted to check with us to the bedroom that had to the closed closet door and were going to detect magic here before heading downstairs to screw around with the furnace.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Youth Meet 19, Adv 2, 7/20/18

Long delay on this one because I actually thought I wrote it weeks ago. Had to take a few weeks off on the youth’s game for summer trips and whatnot, but this was the wrap up meeting for Saltmarsh. My games are living worlds and things happen when the party is involved and even when they are not. In this case, the centerpiece was the death of Magnus’ short-lived squire, Darveig, and his family’s response to it I’d like to put a nail in Saltmarsh this next meeting and get the group on their way to Adv 3 – Dunwater.

Write up follows:

The party, under the tutelage of Ned Shakeshaft, managed to guide the taciturn Sea Ghost back towards shore and eventually the Saltmarsh docks. It was after 3 in the morning at this time and the group was beyond exhausted. Kurly Lodbrock, the Wharfmaster, was waiting for us; the dwarven seaman was watching our lanterns for some time, his longshoremen waiting to help tie the large vessel to the end of the first quay.

Besides Kurly and his boys, were a few members of the watch and the Councilwoman, Dowager Lynn Coopersmith, who was pleased to see us return with the Ghost in hand. We shared with the Dowager what happened and the death of the Smuggler Siggurd Snake-eyes and some of the other smugglers. We also had to share the escape of the Bosun Frithoff and the other two (Smuggler and Lizardman), letting them know they had escaped us over an hour ago. Kurly sent some of his men to check the other docks while we observed some of the unloading of our goods, who returned to let us know the jolly boat had been found on another dock, but no one was there or inside.

Exhausted, we made our way to the Saucy Winter Wench where we learned the Dowager and the rest of the Council had picked up our lodging costs for the next 2 weeks, and after getting to our room, crashed for the night.

The next morn, Earthmonth the 20th, was bright and cooler, and we broke our fast while Deja went through the coinage we had acquired and gave everyone a divided share. We saved a half share for Darveig and planned on giving it to his family today at the burial ceremony. We discussed some of the other goods we had found, talked about selling them, and then learned that we were invited to debrief with the Council on what occurred.

We were given a reward for our efforts in capturing the Sea Ghost and putting the situation to bed. And we were then told that the Council was going to spend a few weeks going over the Ghost, what logs we had brought back, and the various trade caravans and suppliers to see if they could get a better handle on the Dunwater situation. We were told to enjoy a few weeks off and then we would be given a mission to go to Dunwater and displace the 3rd leg of the smuggling operation – the destination – and along with Oceanus, learn what’s going on with the Lizardmen in the area and why the Order of the Kraken was arming them and interested in them.

From there we went to the Saltmarsh Cemetery where Hjarlod was officiating over the internment of Darveig, with Magnus and Veldryn adding their own parts to the somber affair. The young smuggler cum squire’s ill and wheelchair bound mother and older brother were here, looking at the party and Magnus with ill-disguised hatred. When Magnus finally had a chance to talk to Gjulprid and Handaring, he was accosted verbally by the two, told about how he failed to do his job and protect their son, and his actions had led to his death.

He tried to defend himself and then realized the futility of it – it WAS his fault on some plane and he did lead Darveig to his death. It was a heavy mantle for the paladin to bear and he did so with grace, dignity, and piety. At the end of the ceremony he had asked Veldryn to deliver Darveig’s share of the treasure to his family and the Speaker for the Dead did so, learning more of Darveig’s life and that of his brother Handaring. How Darveig’s father had died at sea and now Gjulprid was torn at losing another family member to the cruel waters.

We all reconvened and there was talk of heading off to talk to the town Notary and representative of the Arcanum about the books we had found, hoping that Pinelaquin could help the group.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Meet 56, Adv 4.2, 7/14/18

The group finally got back to adventuring at location - we entered and have been exploring the remains of the Orcish Wizard's Tower of Damlagast - and there are some things that work now and some things that need the tower on to work. However, the 2 ghouls in torpor in the kitchen have awoken and are interested in eating the party, now.

Write up follows:

The evening before we left was spent extracting venom from the giant centipedes as well as loading up on whatever supplies the Reeve Donna was willing to let us take. We slept well and the morning of the 10th dawn bright and early.

We were off by 7:30 and took the long walk south along the Enderlyn River from Base Camp, porting out dugout canoes with us. Furtham’s Peak watched us from on high as we made good time through the grasslands and light scrub, slowing down only to avoid the harsher climb by Three Rock Falls. We arrived thereafter about 2:30 or so and took some time to look around. There were no signs of kobolds at this point and the tower appeared as it did each time we had passed it – sitting some 750’ feet or so from shore on a spire of rock, stretching up another 80’ or so with the top melted and busted appearing. There were no windows, doors, buttresses, or markings on the silent spire.

We split the group into 2 and paddled over, the remains of a dock that had been here was reduced to just some pilings. The rocky base was about 4’ over the height of the lake and there was an uneven path that circled the tower perhaps 3’ or so wide. Whatever safety chains or rails that had been here long ago had rusted or rotted away over the last century.

As for the entrance, there was an area near the front of the tower that showed the lines of a door, but no key, knob, or hinge was seen. Avulstein took out the precious scroll of “Knock” and aimed the effort of the spell at the door. It skittered about for a bit before settling along the Wizard Marked lines on the doors surface and forced them apart – opening the door for the first time in over a century.

A great gust of foul mouldy air billowed out, followed by an inrushing of fresher air. We cast light on a stone and tossed it in, taking the measure of the place. A set of steps started on the east wall and spiraled up along the tower’s wall to the 2nd floor above. A central pillar of thick stone ran through the center of the room. The carpet had become waterlogged over the years and was now a slurry of mashed fibers. There were a few dwarven skeletons in here one at the base of the steps with the head on backwards, one pinned to the southwest wall by a long rifled metal shaft. There was a smaller room along the north wall of the tower where the door had been ripped off its hinges and propped back in place.

Darius spiked the door open in place and we tested the wizard lock as it tried to close the door after 6 minutes and then got hung up on the spike. Once sure we were ok, we entered and scanned around. Outside of what had been described, the room was without any new features. The tower was cool, barely 50 degrees and smelled wet and foul. We decided to check out the closet first.

The door was moved aside and we looked inside. It was a coatroom with more dwarven skeletons in here. The closet rod had been torn free and impaled one of the skeletons to the floor, and the other was near the back of the room by and opening heading down, its right arm missing from just above its elbow. We discussed it a bit and decided a few of us would look down the stairs to the basement while the rest would keep watch up here.

There was a pendulum trap just at the steps down, sprung long ago and the missing dwarf’s arm and rusted axe lying on the stairs. We moved passed and made out way down. The basement had apparently had a seeping issue as there was a good foot and a half of water on the floor with various spongy growths floating on the surface. There were the remnants of a wood bin on the south wall, the west end of the chamber had a half dozen 40 gallon casks there, a rainbow film surrounding them in the fetid water. But the center of the chamber had a monstrous pebbly iron furnace looking thing sitting there.

We explored about a bit. The furnace had a wood repository for almost 400# of combustible material, there was an oil hopper as well, some parts looked like it opened and closed, and there was a bin on top with a mesh along the bottom where something could be placed in the 2’x3’ bin. The barrels were in poor shape, a few of them collapsed and one was leaking, but one or two might be good and we assumed from the leak and residue as well as the tar balls that it might be oil for the furnace. Under the steps were a dozen metal cages that might have held cats or small dogs – but right now most were empty a few had only some bone scraps within.

It was almost 4 when we came back to the first floor, not wanting to mess with the furnace for now. We took the door from the coat closet and leaned it against the front door to further camouflage from outside that the door had been opened and to keep the light pollution from the tower out to a minimum. From there we climbed the steps to the 2nd floor landing and looked around.

Some dwarven bones here and some melted slag. The floor and walls were burned and scarred, and the door in to the next chamber had been smashed in. We looked in and there were a few 2 shelf cases that had been knocked over, a couch on the back wall that had been cut and stuffing was coming out, and two other openings on the south wall at opposite ends of the chamber.

We righted the shelves and looked about, some books, some bric a brac, most of it in broken and poor condition. There was the bust of a orc discovered under the display case. Out light spell was fading some we lit a torch and continued our exploring. We cleaned up the shelves a bit, confident there was not much to find. The two rooms beyond each was a small meeting room – each with a round table and 4 simple chairs.

The western room was initially the more interesting. Two dwarven skeletons were here, their heads smashed in and there was a large orcish skeleton here as well, head twisted the wrong way. In its bony grasp was a large wooden club with a curved top and sporting a heavy stone ball in place – the cosh being the item in question that most likely killed these dwarves. The liquor cabinets had been ransacked and we went back to the parlor. A detect magic was cast and then we panned about – seeing nothing magical in the parlor, the cosh was not, and a look downstairs showed nothing there as well.

The last room had the same layout as the 1st room, tables and chairs, but there was a difference here. There were spaces on the walls for pictures to be hung – currently one with an empty wooden chair. One of the chairs also had the wizard marking on it – the same as we had seen on the front door of the tower – both sides. Shim and Avulstein were sure it had something to do with the person who owned the tower originally.

There were other pictures on the floor and we swapped the empty chair for one that showed an orcish wedding feast. At first nothing happened and then a feeble glow appeared and an apple, a water clay mug of ale, and a poor spot of crumbly bread wavered into existence. What the hell? We tested it, everything tasted poor, but was real. We put the original picture back, left the meeting chamber, gave the couch a once over, and then left, heading up to the 3rd floor landing.

A lizard looking statue is here, snapped into three large pieces, hacked about. The door to the chamber is missing and no sign of where it went. The room beyond takes up half the tower, the other half is walled and two doors on the north and south side of the room arte closed. There are 4 pedestals here, two are empty, and two had the lower halves of what might have been more lizard looking creatures on it. There is busted stone everywhere and the northern most statue is only missing its head and one arm.

We enter and the pedestal on the north side gets a faint wavering glow. And eventually we hear a scratching noise coming from the north door. We test this by entering and exiting a few times – the glow stops and the noise stops. Also, after doing some rubbings, the base of the statues has the name “Damlagast” written again and again around the bottom in Orcish. Name of the wizard? Sounded believable.

We lit two lanterns as the torch was running out and continued our testing of the room. We knocked on one door and tried to hear if it was carried on the other door, other than the scratching noise – no, it seemed there were two rooms beyond here.

It was then that we heard a “THUMP” from below and we ran out and down the steps to investigate – the front door had closed and the table we had propped up there had been knocked down. The spike we had driven in the ground had given way. Ok – once sure no one was in here with us we concluded the Wizard Lock on the front door was the reason behind the noise and returned to the 3d floor landing.

We suspected we would have to start the furnace at some point – Shim and Avulstein letting us know about the Hearts of the certain Towers and some spells and accommodations lie dormant until it the Heart was lit. We decided to keep on looking up to the 4th floor for now.

The fourth floor here had parts of the steps just below the landing smashed again and again as if by a hammer, cracking the rocks in places but still allowing people to climb up. The room beyond showed a dining room that would seat 10, 8 of the chairs around the table, warped legs making the table not sit true. One chair has been shoved under the door handle to what you assume leads to the kitchen, propping it closed.

But we were making some noises in here and moving things around as we picked through the broken crockery, and we heard a snarling growl from behind the door. The chair which over a century had grown weak was bending and splintering. We grabbed the table, flipped it on its end and ran it at the door as the chair broke back. A weathered grey arm scrambled about and Shim tried to whip it, failing – and Darius pegged it with a bullet – but it slithered back and then something hit the table HARD from the other side and it fell out a few feet as something scrambled from behind it.

Friday, August 3, 2018

Youth Meet 18, Adv 2, 7/13/18

The group went through the Sea Ghost from bow to stern, top deck to bottom hold, and found a few items of interest. Including a prisoner that had been hinted was on board. However, they had also lost 3 of the prisoners they had captured earlier and managed to keep the last one that had been knocked out in the hold bound up and ready to go back to shore. At this point they need to pilot the boat back and then meet with the council. Next meeting should put a line in the “done” box for the Sea Ghost and start the set up for the next adventure where they need to go to Dunwater.

Write up follows:

The chest contained assorted crud but most important were the almost 100 silver hammered slugs on the bottom. About the same size as nobles, these had no stamp or minting marks on them and their presence was strange to say the least. A look over the rest of the cabin showed nothing else of interest for now. There was a door in the rear of the cabin that lead elsewhere into the Ghost so Deja, Talion, and Veldryn went further in to investigate.

The next hold was against the bow of the ship as evidenced from the curved walls and was the supply hold for the ghost. Nails and hammers, wood and sail cloth, all manner of needs for the ship were here. On the south wall of the hold was a smaller door/passway – about 3’ off the floor and 3’ square. We gave it a good look over and it was the ship’s galley stores. Salt, honey, biscuits, all manner of food was here. The three of them were looking over the bounty and seeing what could be taken and what should be left.

Meanwhile on the Forecastle, Magnus and Valerie were talking to the three smugglers up here – the Bosun named Frithoff, the Lizardman who was eyeing the half-orc with an appreciative eye, and the lone smuggler who had stayed by the captain’s side. As for Ned, he was on the Poop deck across the ship, working on the steering linkage that apparently the ship’s mage had damaged as soon as the fight had started, so was buried beneath the wheel and under the deck plankings.

The Bosun was talking to the paladin, calling in his honor at attacking honest seamen on their own boat and relished the idea of getting before the magistrate and clearing his name. The Bosun was waxing long about how the group was the ones at fault and their aggression would end up being the party’s downfall once the Council heard how they accorded themselves. Kept claiming he was an honest man and the Captain was the one who handled all the trades and deals.

It was when he started to break into song that had Magnus and Valerie looking at him oddly. And then the other two also were singing and humming and rocking a bit. Not sure what was going on, Valerie took a step closer to order them to knock it off when Magnus felt the sharp prick of a blade slide between the joints in his armor and press into his back, drawing a drop of blood. A hand then settled on his shoulder and a voice whispered in his ear, “Not so fast, paladin. Drop your sword now or I’ll paint the deck boards red.”

Crap.

Valerie looked and saw a lone smuggler; soaking wet had climbed up the side of the Ghost and had the paladin in a position to be skewered instantly. She clutched her club and he told her to drop it. And the shield. Meanwhile he kicked Magnus’ sword behind him until it fell off the ship and into the water.

He kicked a small knife over to Valerie and ordered her to cut the Bosun free. She did so, carefully, and Frithoff the Bosun then cut the lizardman and the lone smuggler free as well. They climbed down the guide rope to the jolly boat below one at a time while the wet smuggler kept his sword in Magnus’ back.

Magnus asked who he was, identified himself as Brance. He was the one who had jumped off from the fear spell and was swimming away but once it wore off, he tiredly swam back and waited for the party to split up before making his move. The other three smugglers had seen him climb over the rail and made noises and were singing to mask any sound he might have made.

He advised the paladin to find different work and to not bother to follow them because next time there’ll be a reckoning between them. He then gave a small stab, told him “The Order of the Kraken wishes him well”, and pushed Magnus at Valerie, and vaulted over the side to the jolly boat that the smugglers on board were already rowing away. Val helped Magnus up as they looked over the side – the lizardman smirking at the half-orc while the boat was lost in the midnight fog.

Damn it.

Meanwhile the other three had finished going through the food stores and the next door led to the galley and then the main deck. Once there they were hailed by Magnus and Valerie who also managed to finally attract Ned’s attention and the two of them let the group know about the 3 smugglers and their escape. Damn it!! Now we had no one to bring back to question and get justice. The three went now below decks to quickly clear out the place while Ned said he needed half an hour more to finish the job.

The first below deck section was the crew quarters and the group looked through it with care. Lots of clothes, hammocks, a few honey buckets. They discovered some “ace” heavy decks of cards and a few sets of loaded dice, but nothing else of interest. They went through the bulkhead door to the main cargo hold which was filled with bolts of silk and brandy, all bearing the Order of the Kraken seal. There were other cargo as well, but the majority was the stolen goods.

The big find though was towards the aft part of the hold where we discovered one of the smuggler’s here, goose egg on her head and blood running along the boards. We bound her up and Valerie called on Frey for a minor curative. Then we awoke her and brought her topside.

Her name was Roseta and she was the smuggler that Ned had kicked into the hold during the fight. She answered a few questions and then was left to Magnus and Valerie to further pick from while the other three went back to the hold to explore the two closed quarters under the stern. One was the Bosun’s, and the other was Bloody Bjorn’s, the first mate’s.

We checked of the Bosun’s first and gave the quarter a once over. Some silver flagon and other minor treasures. There was a parrot here, Polly that kept calling “Pieces of Eight, pieces of Eight!” and squawking about Frithoff loves Polly. The sea chest had clothes on top, but below was a locked iron box.

Working the lock showed a dagger, a short spear, and a crossbow as well as around 200 nobles. The weaponry was cold forged weapons and the crossbow was not operable at this time. The design work on the spear and dagger were also different and elvish, but also not. We were checking out the rest of the chamber when we heard a faint knock behind the aft wall.

Investigation showed a panel that could be removed and inside was a bluish skinned elvish figure chained to the deck. Veldryn did most of the talking as the figure did not speak any language other than elvish. Identified himself as Oceanus and he and his wife, Nymara, had been captured by Captain Siggurd a number of weeks ago.

This ship had been having dealing s with the lizardman tribe outside of Dunwater and even some dealing with the Sahaugin marauders beyond Deep Cove (the sea elven enclave not too far from Dunwater). Oceanus, a ranger, had been given permission by his chief to investigate the ship and see what these “hoomans” were doing when the man and wife team were caught.

Nymara was left with a cruel smuggler in a cave called Sanbalat and Oceanus had been here, prisoner of the Sea Ghost for the last 2 weeks. He had heard the Bosun say something about selling him but didn’t know anything else. We talked to him about his wife, assuming the severed sea elf head we had found at the haunted mansion was his wife’s. He grew angry and wanted revenge.

We returned his weapons (the spear, dagger, and crossbow were his), and then gave him a shirt which he cut up into a better clothing for him to wear. We then went up to the main deck, introduced Oceanus to the rest of the crew and the sea elf was happy to join us and would gladly go with us if we were eventually going to go to Dunwater and take care of the lizard man problem.

Which he did tell us, that Siggurd was using the money he was getting from the sale of smuggles goods to help outfit the lizardmen down there in armor and weapons. Why? Had something to do with someone the crew had referred to as “My Lady” or “The Lady”. We asked Roseta on it and even though she was a minor member of the crew, about once a month or so, an important person would visit the ship and she apparently ran or was high up in the Order of the Kraken – the smuggling operation which was Sanbalat, Siggurd, and whoever was buying the goods at Dunwater was.

Was this Grabbi Ogansdottr who we suspected had not died that day on the gallows 2 years ago? This was here operation…but we didn’t know. We do know the name of the ship though that she sailed on…”The Kraken’s Wrath”.

The group finished cleaning out the last three cabins, taking the captain’s log books, the wizard’s spell tomes, and the navigations books from the First Mate’s Meanwhile, Valerie was spending her time bonding with the parrot, Polly, Speaking with the animal as well as working on mutual trust between the two.

At this point it had to be 2 or 3 in the morning and we were anxious now to turn the Sea Ghost towards shore and sail it back to Saltmarsh.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Meet 55, Adv 4.2, 7/7/18

I don't like to "march time forward" with a hand wave, instead playing out each day and seeing the party's choice and the organic growth of their adventure. So when I called for Marching time forward a few times this night, the party didn't trust me and wanted to play out each day - pointing out how this was not the norm and not in character to the game and DMing style they had been used to.

It's funny, but I just wanted to get to the "adventure" part of the adventure.

Write up follows:

The group went and spoke with the Bailiff, letting Youngston know about their thoughts regarding the K’Morat sightings and that they’d like to hold off on harvesting a few days as a possibility. The camp is in the black now – assuming we get 3-4 viable Firvin’s Caps back per day – we’re at this point running 8-9 days in the black – with the next 2 months and rest of the season a possibility to really ramp up the profits, so to speak.

The Bailiff was not keen on stopping the harvesting for now but the group had an alternative plan where we suspect the party might be watched all the time. So we should go out with a different number of people each time, eventually reducing it over the next 4 days until the following time the K’Morat were expected to show up we actually go out with the Randari and scout early and set up a few traps.

That was approved and we went to bed feeling proactive. On the 5th there were only 3 Caps found and Barb and Shim went out with the Randari, setting up a snare trap on the way. Nothing untoward happened and we returned the camp without issue. The next day was similar except we tried a different snare; this one that wouldn’t actually catch anything but had a pit dug nearby to trip up a few kobolds. We then wandered around south, exploring the area near the river as we looked around. After a few miles we turned back and returned to Base Camp.

The next morning saw Barb and Shim once again heading off with the Randari but a good 1,000 feet or so from the walls of the Camp, a boulder came sailing in and smashed Hornes in the chest, knocking the half-orcish leader down. The Randari looked about and in the dark another boulder smashed in – catching a Randari in the head and killing him.

Everyone dropped making the chance to be hit smaller; Barb was clipped and had a broken arm. Shim was dispatched to run back to Base Camp and get the Giant slayers. Meanwhile Barb could tell through the Ravenstone that the voices in the gloom were giants and they were laughing about hitting the orcs. Shim made it back to the Camp, the slayers were raised as well as the party, and some 15-20 people ran out and back to the Giants. The Slayers did their job and held the giants at bay eventually running them off while the rest of the party attended to the Rangers and brought them home.

Harvesting was put aside for today and Hornes lost ANOTHER Ranger. Anger was heavy, Spunifer came and healed up Barb and the entire camp stayed buttoned up for 2 days until the 9th when the group went out again. This time with was Barb and Darius who went out and set up a snare on the route back. Then they were working on another snare and a pit by the cut down point, sharpening some punji stakes when they were convinced they weren’t alone.

Glimpses in the forest, bits of signs something wasn’t right. Then there were the signs of kobolds and the two of them RAN – one of them getting clotheslined and Darius smashing one in the skull with a sling bullet. Realizing they were now surrounded by 30 of them and it looking grim, Barb managed to croak out a few words in their language thanks to the Ravenstone.

This caused the kobolds to pause. Food doesn’t talk, but she talks their language. Hence she isn’t food. They are an affront to the clan and need to leave or they will be eaten. Barb tries to get some information and hears something about “numerous as the trees on the mountain, as the stars in the sky” and figures out that the Base Camp has 5 days to disperse or the kobolds are going to fall on the stone walls (they actually made reference to the Camp, its location, and its makeup) and burn them down.

The two of them were allowed to leave and we ran up Furtham’s Peak where we joined the rest of the party and let them know what we had discovered and the kobolds. Holy crap – this was bad. We made sure not to let the Harvesters know what was going on and after 3 when the last of the Caps were gathered we began the trek back.

Around the same place where our traps had been set up (and now dismantled), was a K’Morat Fetish marking. A long stick festooned with skulls and feathers and scraps of cloth on a pile of rocks propped up bear a tree. The thought was to walk on by but Shimlagesh was offended by it and went to take it down. However he disturbed the rocks and three centipedes crawled out and up his legs. He danced back, fell over, and the fetish fell with him and there was a blast of black energy and he was knocked out.

We dragged him free, cut his pants leg open and killed the two centipedes there. However, healing spells seemed to stop at him and failed to work. Plus he was breathing shallowly and quickly, evidenced something was wrong. We wanted to get him back to Camp now.

So we kept going and saw another fetish. Darius spent some time slinging rocks at the damned thing, hitting the skulls until they were all broken and two of them had that same black energy look as what had hit Shimlagesh. We made it back to Base Camp by 5ish, filled the Bailiff on what was going on, and then had Spunifer come and try to help. Her own spells were stopped for some reason on healing the gnome and she was forced to use a Remove Curse scroll.

However, she wanted payment and Negan gave up his only 2 magical quills to the orcish druid who then removed the curse on the gnome and was able to heal him at long last. Shim awoke and we spent some time healing him properly and then discussed what happened and what it bodes for us.

Barb was adamant that the K’Morat she spoke to were serious about their 5 day abandon the place time limit. We were still under the belief that the Warren was on the other side of the Enderlyn River and based upon the time between K’Morat forays, most like 2-3 days away from Furtham’s Peak. That was a big area to look over and we still had not seen any obvious crossings of the K’Morat. The River was too fast to trust to swimming and the boats would have to start further upstream to account for the current.

This brought up Broken Tower Lake again. It is the only slow spot on the river anywhere near here, and Darius dimly remembered the Teamster Trentis mentioning seeing K’Morat on the Lake when we took our first trip up here a month and a half earlier. There was a slim but believable chance the K’Morat could be crossing there and it was worth a look. Plus, the Broken Tower was there and we suspected there would be some spell crystals we could snag for Avulstein’s upcoming transfer from wolverine to something else.

We went to the Bailiff and talked about us taking a detour to the lake to check it out. This gave us 4 days to go, check, and return before the K’Morat were expected to return.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Youth Meet 17, Adv 2, 7/6/18

The fight on the Sea Ghost continued to rage on throughout this meeting, with most of the smugglers coming up top to trade blows with the group – we had some serious fighting back and forth, healing was dispensed, and some deaths. But the combat SEEMS to be over for now and the party was about to give the Ghost a once over to look for treasure and answers as to what’s going on at Dunwater.

Write up follows:

Valerie charged over to Veldryn and her skeleton who was barely held together after getting a nasty bashing from the lizardman there. Shield out, the Half-orcish druid tried to intersperse herself in the fight. Ned was hoisted to his feet, the assassin downing a fast healing potion and then growling, took out a poniard and dipped it liberally in poison. He glanced up the main mast and giving Darveig a nod, hoisted himself up the guide ropes and began to climb.

The Captain and his aide tore into the crocodile, blades slashing and dancing around the beast, hacking its thick hide but failing to drop it. Then the ship’s Bosun came out with a messenger bag around his neck looking wildly about. The Captain shouted, “HERE!” and the Bosun tossed him a glass vial which he upended and drank – healing his wounds! Bloody Bjorn did the same with a tossed vial his way and the wizard was thrown one, drinking it down and now pissed off as he stood up and snarled at Talion. From behind him a small dragon like figure emerged and swarmed towards Deja and the ranger – getting close enough to have the figure slash down and try to poison the two of them with the venomous stinger on its tail!

Bloody smashed Will Stoutly again, doing terrible damage to the sailor who was barely hanging on at this point. The battle was all over the place and finally the ship’s wizard fired another two magic missiles at Talion, the chaotic bolts ripping into the Ranger’s chest.

Veldryn hid behind Valerie and her skeleton who were working tag team against the lizardman, the necromancer needing to get the Bosun out of the fight. She called upon Hel and hit the smuggler with a black bolt – and he froze in place, Held by the powerful magics! Arrows were shot and Deja pegged the mage once and then critically hit the pseudo-dragon in the chest as it tried to wing away, flipping over and falling into the sea.

Magnus laid hands on Will, pouring all of Tyr’s healing into the sailor and straightening him up. Firing some scornful remarks at Bloody Bjorn, Will hacked at the First Mate with his broadsword, driving the man back to the deck wall. Darveig sported Will and the two of them held Bloody at bay, barely for now. The lone lizardman then collapsed to Valerie and the skeleton’s assault – just in time for the next two lizardmen to hit the stairs from the lower deck and charge up the steps. Val used her prodigious strength the smash the door closed and brace it with her shield and shoulder as the two scaled foes on the other side tried to batter it down.

The ship’s wizard shot a Gust of Wind spell at Deja, trying to blow the Halfling off the ship but she was gripping the capstan tight and refused to let go. More arrows followed and the wizard went down again...this time for the last time! The crocodile disappeared and before the Captain could hit Veldryn, Valerie leaned away from the door she was bracing and called out again – this time Frey dropping a Dire Badger onto the deck who ripped Captain Siggurd’s midsection open.

Talion and Deja were pissing arrows at this point, both of them running with near empty quivers as they shot indiscriminately into the battle at any target that was available. By now, Ned had reached the cross beam on the mast, ran across it, hit a rope and jumped, spiraling down, falling on Bloody Bjorn with a surprise backstab with his poisoned blade and dropped the giant of a man to the deck, killing him. Hurt and tired, Ned looked over at Will, Darveig, and Magnus and said, “I’m done, you guys hit the rest.”

The lone smuggler that was supporting Bloody tried to take Ned out but Darveig and Magnus turned their attention to him. As for the lizardmen, one of them had run DOWN into the hold and we heard running across the bottom of the ship, while the other had burst the door open and engaged Valerie there – the two of them shoving and pushing back and forth.

So – we had the Captain and a smuggler fighting the Dire Badger, the Bosun held in place, another smuggler fighting Darveig, Will and Magnus, a lizardman struggling with Valerie at the top of the stairs, Veldryn and the skeleton catching their breath and going to help Valerie, Talion and Deja on the Forecastle Deck with bows observing and shooting with a handful of arrows left between them, and another lizardman running across the bottom of the ship to most likely climb the stairs to the main deck from the Poop deck.

The Captain and his minion tore the Dire Badger apart in short order, dispelling the beast, and then moved to engage Veldryn. Before he could get there, the opposite door opened up and the lizardman there emerged, shooting Will Stoutly in the chest and the veteran seaman stumbled backwards and collapsed off the ship – dead. An exchange of arrows follows along with Veldryn trying to Command the captain (and failing) and after swords and axes and everything else flew…

Valerie had managed to shove the lizardman back into the hold and slam the door closed, the Captain hacked at Magnus, dropping the paladin, the smuggler tore into Darveig, slaying the young squire, and hit points were dropping like mad everywhere. The lizardman with the bow was killed and one of the lone smuggler’s was killed.

The Captain Siggurd and his smuggler companion jumped off the ship and tried to make it to the jolly boat while the group ran to heal Magnus and Darveig – saving one but failing to help the other as we had NO healing left – not even the paladin lay on hands. Darveig died in Magnus’ arms, whispering it was worth it and then left – dying in battle and we assume on his way to Valhalla.

We shot at the Captain who was knocking on the side of the boat while the lizardman down there was trying to pass a healing potion to him – but a final arrow last shot from Talion over the side of the Sea Ghost hit the Captain in the chest and the last 2 hit points withered away – and he sank at long last…dead!

Ordering the last smuggler back onto the boat we had three now with us: the smuggler, the Bosun, and the last lizardman. We dragged everyone to the Main Deck, spent some time tying them up, and then dispensed the Bosun’s sack of healing poitons he had (5 remaining) to the group. A few cure minor’s went out but the party was pretty beat up.

We questioned the three extensively for a time, made sure they were bound up tight, and then Deja, Talion, and Veldryn went to start looking over the ship – hitting the first room under the Forecastle which seemed to be the lizardman’s cabin. There were a few things in there but a locked wooden chest was the most appealing. Deja was sure it was locked and trapped and we went out to the lizardman to get the key from his waist. With careful fingers he turned it and unlocked the chest, hand rest on top as he tilted to cover back to peer inside.

Monday, July 9, 2018

Meet 54, Adv 4.2, 6/30/18

We added a person to our table for the first time over a year and a half. He's a good fit so far attitude wise and there will be the obligatory getting to know the campaign most likely death to follow at some point in the future.

Write up follows:

The Nightwoods sits on the far eastern limits of the Randari lands and is home to the Nightwood Gnomes who have lived there for as long as anyone can remember. Always a bit insular, they did help out the Gorokian Mountain Dwarves and the Jarlborrin Hill Dwarves during the collapse of the Randari Orcish Empire by trade and troops, devoting over 12,000 gnomish artisans, engineers, woodslingers, and spellswords to the 3 year fray. As the battle lines eventually moved west of the Borbuta Sea, the Nightwood Gnomes reduced their commitment to the active war and returned to their arboreal borders.

However, fruit was borne back during that period of time by a young missionary and follower of the old gods, horrified by the things he had seen and the atrocities dwarf, orc, gnome, and human alike had done. He came back with a simple mission, to preach peace and the expulsion of all negative things in one’s life. Tolerated at first, and then persecuted later, the young missionary, known as the Theocrat, grew slowly in age and power and influence. Bit by bit, his swelling control of the Nightwoods choked out his rivals and counterparts one by one. Some left their ancestral homes, others disappeared in the darkness. The borders of Nightwoods grew colder and there was malevolence to the trees that threatened anyone not born there.

Eventually, some 20 years ago, the Theocrat closed the trade roads from Bypass to the Nightwoods and had visitor and merchant turned aside. There was some wailing of displaced gnomes in the various towns and cities, but little was done and the caravans eventually stopped trying to stop in Nightwoods. There are those who still leave the Nightwoods and the Theocrat’s rule and reign, making their way throughout the Randari lands looking for a chance to belong to something larger than themselves.

Five years earlier, Shimlagesh, a young sorcerer, 4th in the family line of wizards and spellcasters, felt that he had exhausted any and all opportunities his narrow minded family had laid open for him. Eating the crusts from their tables so to speak, and seeing the very stratified society that the Theocrat had been building, Shimlagesh took the all-important step and left his family and ancestral lands behind and made his way by foot over a six day period to Bypass where he started the long journey of self-discovery.

Over the next five years Shimlagesh had traveled along the southern stretch of the Great Traderoads of the Reetersbeard Dwarves until some 200 plus miles later his journey had led to Sorton and eventually the employ of House Illytch. The young gnome, not as young any longer, was looking for a group, a family, someone to have his back and an opportunity to belong. Adventuring and mercenary groups abounded in the western lands of the Randari and Shim was hoping to join one.

House Illytch used Shimlagesh’s skill in herbalism and alchemy at first locally and then wanted to send him 3 days to the west, across the border to the Morata Mountains and eventually the Base Camp to help the two alchemists already there in their preparation of harvested mushrooms coming back to Sorton. He took the work, made the trip, and learned about the Randari Rangers, the mercenary group, the Harvesters, Firvin’s Cap and all manner of things at the camp.

Especially that the two alchemists here were sent here not because of their skill, but because of their recklessness and inability to learn from their mistakes. After a week of working for them, picking up countless pieces of busted glass and hating every moment of it, Shimlagesh was done. A visit to the Bailiff had Youngston Illytch give the gnome hope. The mercenary group who had tackled the first of three kobold warrens was due back today and if all went well, Shimlagesh could transfer his commission over from the alchemist potion of the Illytch operations to the guarding and hunting portion if the mercenary group would take him.

Luck was on Shim’s side as he sat down with Avulstein, Barb, Connal, Darius, and Negan. They had been discussing how best to find the next warren, how best to guard the harvesters and still do their job and with the desire NOT to take Bobkins out with them again, figured they were down a person or two. They talked about skills, capabilities, and what the end goal was to be.

The Base Camp was of low morale as there had once again been the sharing of duties, this meant that few Firvin’s Caps had come back over the last 2 weeks and the Base Camp was operating in the red once again. The party wanted to show the flag and support the harvesters so after talking with the locals and learning the K’Morat kobold sightings have been every 4-5 days, we were going to go with Thiklish and her Harvesters for a few days and see how that shook out.

Workmonth the 2nd was a rainy day, cold, and we were headed up to 5,500 feet on Furtham’s Peak to help guard the harvesters and their gathering of 5. We spoke with Hornes and Spunifer and then did what we had to, getting everyone back safely that afternoon. The 3rd was a repeat at 4,200 feet up on the western slope, more rain and warmer, but we did have a 4 count of brown bears in the area that we let pass and then returned to Base Camp. There was talk of intersecting the ursines afterwards and we did go back out, but it was to no avail and returned without issue.

Workmonth the 4th had us run into two simple traps – one was a snare that captures Thiklish and sent the matronly Halfling slamming into the bole of a tree, and a bit further downslope and along the same trail only 30 or so paces beyond was a deadfall pendulum of some roped up logs that would have brained someone.

Simple traps, kobolds were nearby. Their intention unknown but we suspected harassment at best; we got the Harvesters back and then talked about what to do. We didn’t SEE any of the K’Morat, but their presence had been noted. Do we try to appeal to the Bailiff about suspending operations? Do we wait for the rest of the party to return from their training? We suspected we had a few days still before the kobolds returned and would discuss plans and options then.

Friday, June 29, 2018

Youth Meet 16, Adv 2, 6/28/18

My daughter and her friends got together this night to try and see if a night time foray onto the Sea Ghost was in the cards. I made three checks from the docks after10 to see if the vessel had pulled up and lay anchor off the bay lines of the Mastelic Ocean. It was successful on the third, meaning the vessel was there – so instead of days of waiting – it was that same night. Plus having the theme to Pirates of the Caribbean playing in the background during the fight was very cool.

Write up follows:

The party spent a few hours at the Saucy Winter Wench, staking out a table near the front door and ordering a round of the house stew, bread, and simple beer for the night. It was after 8 when Deja, Veldryn, and Hjarlod left the tavern to situate themselves on the docks and get ready if the Ghost appeared.

We walked down to the 4th quay through the quiet warehouse district and made our way on the docks until the faint lapping of the tide was all we heard against the pilings. Sitting down, we wrapped ourselves in our cloaks and waited, Hjarlod drinking and muttering as he did so. It was after 9 when Hjarlod and Veldryn, assured that no one was going to come out and bug them, upended the bag of bones she was carrying and dumped out the remains of the alchemist.

According to the Speaker, it was always best to organize the bones properly first. So they spent a good 10 gruesome minutes building the skeleton flat on the dock boards until everything was where it should be. Then she lit a candle and placed the candle in the center of the body where the heart would be. Then with a handful of graveyard dirt and Hjarlod’s guidance, she called upon Hel to infuse these bones with her blessing.

One by one, bit by bit, the bones clacked in place with a series of snapping pops. The candle fast melted into a glob of hot wax and fused itself to the skeleton’s breastbone as a hot dark light. And then the skeletal servant stood up and turned to face Veldryn. She was blown away, Deja arched an eyebrow, and Hjarlod took a drink of his flask, whispering, “It’s pretty heady stuff, eh?”

She put the undead through its paces and then had it relax on the quay. We then all watched the water and waited. It was after 11 PM when we saw a series of long and short flashes which had Deja excited. The smugglers were asking if there was anything to smuggle tonight. She answered in kind, the pattern being the one telling the Sea Ghost to wait, smuggling is coming.

Hjarlod offered to go back to the Wench to get the rest of the party but fell off the docks into the water and came up sputtering. Crawling back on board he was cursing a bit and Deja offered to go back with him. They staggered back to the shore and then through the streets to the Wench. Once there, they went to the party’s table, dropped the drunken Speaker in place, bought him a few rounds of beer, and then left to rejoin Veldryn on the docks. It was on the way back that Deja was convinced the party was being shadowed by someone the next block over, but could not be sure and no one else in the party was able to see it or whoever.

They made good time and once there the party saw the undead skeleton with her. She assured Magnus that this was a temporary thing and would be used to help us to bring Siggurd Snake eyes and his smugglers to justice. Upon completion, she would allow the spell to end and return the bones to her bag should Hel’s blessing be needed another time. The paladin really thought about it and agreed that this was a fine middle ground that he could work with. They shook hands as long lasting friends again and turned to help load the jolly boat.

Will Stoutly was going to man the rudder, Ned Shakeshaft the oars. Darveig was going to be at the front and watch the gloomy waters ahead for the Ghost. This left Veldryn, Magnus, Talion, Deja, Valerie, and the undead skeleton to tuck cloaks and shirts around the edges of their armor to muffle the clinks and clanks it might make and be ready. The plan was to sail up to the forecastle (Bow deck) and board there. Then try to clear the main deck quietly before funneling the smugglers to a single area where the group could use concentrated missile fire and spell use to bolster the front line which should consist of Will, Darveig, Ned, Magnus, the skeleton, and Valerie as soon as the half-orc could get into the melee.

As they left the docks, Deja was watching to see if the shadow person made themselves known but no one came out that she could see. We rowed quietly, Darveig calling out the estimated distance from Saltmarsh.
At just about half a mile, from the dim gloom ahead came the outline of the Sea Ghost. We could barely see figures on the Poop Deck (Aft) looking out to shore and maybe 1 or two people on the main deck. Ned and Will steered the boat about so we approached from the bow head on and used the bulk of the Ghost to hide our approach. They shipped the oars and just allowed momentum to carry us towards the Ghost before we came to a stop.

The bow rope was tied to the anchor chain and we listened. No one seemed to have heard us so we felt emboldened. But from the whistling above, we suspected there was one guy up there on the Forecastle. The needed to take him out quick and quiet. So, Deja and Ned volunteered to be first up. They scrambled up the side of the Ghost, finger and toe holds the only thing getting them up there. Once up top, Ned took out the grapple and placed it over the top of the rail, letting the rope drop down to the boat below where Veldryn was quickly going to start climbing.

As for the lone guy? A single smuggle near the port rail was looking out at the water and whistling. Deja and Ned collaborated and then quietly charged the guy. Ned hit the man first, around the neck, hand over his mouth and then Deja struck low, poniard stabbing up through the kidneys and into the guts. Then Ned’s Kris-blade went down below the shoulder blades and into the lung, the assassin twisting it as he lowered the burbling smuggler to the deck.

From the main deck, the two of them, heard a seaman call out, “Jordi? All ok?” Ned looked around wildly and then grunted a few times in a fake voice and muttered, “All good.”

…nothing happened, crisis averted.

The rest of the group climbed up the rope one at a time while the stayed low against the capstan and looked about. Two men on the main deck, three on the poop deck. One is Siggurd with a lantern, two others are seaman, but one of them is hooded and wearing a robe. Ships’ mage? Sanbalat had told us there was one, and about as skilled as he was. Check and be careful.

Through the still air we heard snippets of conversation from the Captain. “Wait and see…Not sure what Sanbalat’s up to, been almost 3 days and didn’t reply…give them and hour and then we sail back to the cove…make the run to Dunwater and…crew is a bit tired.”

The last ones in the boat was Will and the skeleton – which could not climb the rope. So Will wrapped the end of the ropes around the skeleton and tied it in place and then climbed up. Once there, he and Magnus began pulling the skeleton up…the undead bumping lightly against the hull of the Ghost.

Which attracted the attention of one of the smugglers who came forward and climbed up the ladder asking, “Jordi? What the hell is...”

That was as far as he got as Deja ran towards him, cloak held wide, and then JUMPED off the deck and engulfed the smuggler’s head in her cloak, wrapping it around him and then pulling it tight as she whipped back onto the deck. This then had Talion slam both hands into the smugglers back and PULL…flipping him up the last few steps of the ladder and onto the Forecastle. Valerie let her huge club slap freely down, took two steps up and called shot it to the smuggler’s head just as Deja let go and leapt free – smacking it with the sound of a wet melon. And finally Veldryn dropped to the knee and dragged her dagger against the smuggler’s throat, silencing him at long last.

We waited. Quiet. And then someone asked, “What the hell was that noise?” The Captain turned the bullseye lantern on the party and shouted! “Son of a…Boarders! We’ve got boarders! Awake ya scalawags and toss ‘em back to the sea!”

The battle was on.

The Captain sprung from the Poop deck to the Main deck with a roll and flourish, sending his cutlass end over end until it HIT Talion in the shoulder, bruised and cut through and then rang off. The ships’ wizard fired off a pair of magic missiles that flew across the decks and HIT Magnus, twice – leaving smoking burns in the paladin’s chest. Another smuggler got in line by the mast, others were stomping and calling, and then three more hit the deck – one with a crossbow! And shot Darveig in the thigh but didn’t knock him down.

Talion and Deja fired arrows into the mess on the main deck, taking down the crossbowman eventually and wounding another sailor. Then Will took his own heavy crossbow and aimed…at the Poop deck and the wizard there – plugging him in the chest and knocking him on his ass. And we hoped out of the fight.

Valerie cast a healing spell on Magnus who drew his scimitar and joined Ned and  Darveig at the steps, hitting the Main Deck hard. Veldryn called to Hel and Caused Fear on one of the pirates barely in range – and he failed, throwing his weapons away and then jumping over board screaming in terror.

We lucked out on initiative and the party fired again, more arrows plugging into the mass of growing smugglers, wounding many. Will left his crossbow on the Forecastle and jumped down to the longboat on the main deck and then rolled to the main deck to run and bolster the other fighter’s there. Veldryn clambered down and then reached up to help the skeleton hit the deck as well, scythe coming out.

As the battle was going on, Ned charged forward, flung himself around Darveig from the outer rail and used the momentum to barrel into the wounded smuggler and send her windmilling backwards to fall down into the hold of the ship, clearing another person away! Swords clanged and Magnus was going to engage Siggurd when the party told him NO! Not by yourself! And with that Valerie called to Frey…and dropped an 18’ crocodile right in front of the Captain who had to dance back and avoid the snapping jaws. His cutlass hit the beast and rang off, again and again and again!

Another smuggler stood with the Captain as the two of them tried to drive the crocodile back, having very little effect. Deja and Talion noticed the ship’s wizard stand on shaky feet, a healing potion dropping from his grasp and he shook his head clear. And then the doors to the hold opened and the Ships’ first mate, and bear of a man called “Bloody” by the other smugglers and wielding a huge maul, swung it to crash against Ned who could not get out of the way and sent the assassin flying away, taking brutal damage and knocking him down. Another smuggler was at Bloody’s back with his own cutlass and from behind Veldryn, the door burst open and an almost 7’ tall 325 lb. lizardman with a bone spiked club came out and tried to kill them. The two of them struggled for a bit until the skeleton was struck and fell back hurt.

A smuggler had Darveig pressed on both sides and was going to skewer the young man when Magnus jumped forward at the last moment and took the blow against his own shield and chainmail, turning it aside at the last second.

The fight was racing forward and we were a bit scattered. Talion and Deja were on the Forecastle raining arrows into the battle, Valerie was up there as well but her strength and size was probably needed more in the melee at this point. On the poop deck was the ship’s mage, hurt but not dead. The main deck had Veldryn and the skeleton facing a lone lizard man near the Forecastle, the Captain and a smuggler were fighting the crocodile at midship, and at the main deck port side near the Poop deck, Bloody the First Mate and a smuggler were facing off against Darveig, Magnus, and Will while Ned had been knocked down near the center mast.

We could still hear sounds from below our feet, making us believe there are other smugglers still waiting to come out. A few of us have been hurt, but no one has dropped yet. And the battle continues to rage on!

Meet 53, Adv 4.2, 6/23/18

The party has now learned about the BBG and minions for the campaign - an Illithyd for sure, and most likely a Black Dragon.

And I have nothing more to say about any of that. But I will smile.


Write up follows:

The group continued on their way to Thak at the lower reaches of the Morata Mountains, situated in the valley of three decent sized hills, the walled city of Thak covers about 5 square miles and is home to a diverse number of races and people; roughly 4,500 citizens in all.

We were stopped at the main gate and the cargo and paperwork checked before allowed in. From there we went to the waystation where the wagons and cargo were taken and we were assured that the return load would be on board much later tonight in line with the trip tomorrow. We then helped Siggurd off the wagon and the party walked slowly to the northeast section of town and the Darbeard Demesne.

At the gates we were recognized and let in, a number of our former coworkers and companions coming forward to wish us well, slap our backs, and comment on how good we were looking. The sight of Siggurd prompted lots of snide comments and tossed rocks and rotting fruit but we held most of the angry people at bay and continued on our way to Tropor’s Manorhouse. Korsdottr, the dwarven caravan master found us on the way and we spoke about House Brinster, the improving fortunes of House Darbeard, the smaller jobs being done, and House Darbeard had joined up with another benefactor to carry them through this difficult time.

She was pleased as hell to see Siggurd captured and reminded the very quiet gambler and caravaneer that he owes a debt in this life and the next. At this point Tropor came out of the Manorhouse, trailed by his Controller Saravia and another younger dwarf identified as Banders. Tropor gave everyone a massive hug, lots of back slapping, and wished Barb the best with the party, “As they are the best group of people we’ve had working for us for a few years.”

He wanted to bring Siggurd in and talked about how weird and auspicious it was that the group had arrived. It seems that some people from the Kingdom of Lord Emberwyne, a benefactor that Tropor has been dealing with to combat the loss of Fingelt’s Mine for now, had arrived YESTERDAY, and they had come at the urgings of a seer that was referred to as The Ambassador.

It seems that Siggurd had stolen something of value from the Darbeards and Lord Emberwyne and they were going to question him now. We had a strong suspicion of what it was, but said nothing.

We entered the Manor House and made out way to the back of the main hall where a spiral stairs took us up slowly to the 4th floor of the tower where the donjon and treasury was located. Saravia went to the treasury door and began counting out silver to pay us for our bounty, while Siggurd opened the other door and revealed a torture chamber and three figures within.

There was a dusky skinned woman with very white teeth and purply/black hair – named Rhenna Dracothrall. There was a dusky skinned mountain dwarf as well, reddish hair, wide broken nose – named Olaff Olaffson. And there was a hooded figure wearing a wooden mask painted faded olive green, robes a motley mix of assorted colors, and hands and arms wrapped in loose folds of bandages (like a leper) – referred to as “The Ambassador”. Introductions were made; Rhenna was inviting and easy to speak with, Olaff seemed crude, cursey, and abrupt, and the Ambassador said nothing – merely stared at everyone.

Without much of a by-your-leave, Siggurd was strapped down and foot and thumb racks and bolted in place. Olaff kept looking at Siggurd from the corner of his eye and walking around him. Rhenna is asking the party how they managed to capture Siggurd who by all accounts is a skilled swordsman. Tropor is gleefully rubbing his fingers while Saravia is in the hall with a scale and stacks of silver, making sure the group is getting the right amount. The Ambassador merely seemed to be watching Siggurd from behind his mask – eerily quiet.

There was a faint subsonic hum in the air and Siggurd leaned forward groaning. He blinked his eyes and shook his head. Olaff got pissed and snatching a hot pincher from the brazier held it in front of Siggurd’s face screaming, “Where the Fonging Hell in Frigga’s Frozen Asscheeks is it, ya lackabout fuckwit?!” The faint subsonic hum seemed to fill the air again and Siggurd groaned again, his left eye looks bloodshot now and there is a trickle of blood under his left nostril. The Ambassador continues to stand there unmoving and silent while Rhenna chats up a storm and Olaff blusters and stomps about. Tropor tightens two of the screws on the foot rack and Siggurd now hisses in pain. “That’s for Nuggle, you fucking scumbag,” he says.

“Just give up what you’ve stolen and we can end this swiftly.” The party is looking ill and wants to get out of here, asking Saravia to hurry it up. The Controller is going as fast as he could and even Rhenna makes her way to the landing to avoid seeing the torture going on.

After a lull we heard Siggurd croak out, “Lo, there do I see my father…” before groaning as the subsonic hum grows and he shakes for almost 5 seconds. After some time he manages to get his breath back and Tropor now has his hands on the thumb screws. “You were saying?” he asks. “Give it up murderer and thief and die without shatting up your drawers and some dignity.”

“Lo, there do I see my mother, my sisters, and my brothers…” and more subsonic humming and Olaff is practically drooling as he watches the spectacle. Blood is oozing down Siggurd’s ears and out his left eye now. Saravia comes in and lays his hand on the party’s shoulder and Rhenna, telling them to come with him to the parlor and leave Tropor, Olaff, and the Ambassador to this. The group follows as the groans turn to shrieks and then there is the hissing sound of burning flesh and Olaff shouting, “Fucking talk, ya fornicating assbag! Thor take ya and use yer face fer an ashtray!” and then more groaning and screaming and dull sounding subsonics.

At the base of the donjon tower, Saravia closes the door and the sounds are gone and the group goes to the parlor with him and Rhenna where some brandy cordials have been laid out along with a tray of candied meats and dried sugared fruits. The group talks to Saravia and Rhenna for a bit. Rhenna is very smart and watches the group asking again on how they fought Siggurd, his skills, anything weird happen during the fights.

However, not even a half hour later Tropor, Olaff, and the Ambassador come in frustrated. “Did you get what you needed from him,” Rhenna asks and Olaff loses his crap and says, “Fucker went and dropped dead! Dead! Ain’t no Hel-blasted reason for him to be up and dead like that!”

Tropor suggests that he was questioned too hard and Olaff agrees and the Ambassador replies in a watery voice, “For all his vaunted skills and strengths, he had neither the stamina nor the life force that you had led our Lord to believe. He was questioned EXACTLY as deeply as he needed to be. You should have withheld the physical torture until I had finished questioning him.”

Olaff and the Ambassador go back a forth a bit until Tropor shakes his head and slams his hand down. “Siggurd was many things, and hid his lies and thievery deep under my good will and trusting nature. But as of now I have no idea where to find my…”At a clearing of Rhenna’s throat he back pedals, “where to find our missing goods.”

“What about a Death Speaker? There are some in Sorton I’ve heard, pretty skilled ones at that.” Rhenna asked

The Ambassador replied, “It doesn’t work like that. If it did we’d have had the stolen goods in our hands 5 years earlier.” He then sounds like he clears his throat, however Barb stiffens a bit as she can understand the throat clearing through the Ravenstone as the Ambassador saying, “By Yogsothoth, you hairless apes are so stupid it’s amazing that you can even speak.” And it was in Illithyd. Fuck.

At this point and at Barb’s urging we want to leave and thank Tropor and Saravia for the 900 nobles, foregoing the option to stay the night, saying that we have a room “at an inn in town”. It was here that Avulstein then asked if Siggurd was dead, could he have the body for necromantic research since he was a wizard. The Ambassador looked at him strangely and replied negatively as they had other ways to hopefully question the passed on Siggurd. So we left, the Ambassador watching the party, Avulstein the most.

We went to a local tavern and got a room for all of us, made sure it was secured, and then talked about what happened. We feel that we threw off suspicion since they were surprised we were able to beat Siggurd in a fight, and expressed often that he was the not the most skilled of the fighters, the dwarven woman was. Barb told us about the Illithyd/Ambassador and Avulstein filled in some knowledge he had on the matter. Race of beings from another world or dimension who came here and saw all other races as food and/or below them.

And Rhenna Dracothrall? Lord Emberwyne was a dragon? Maybe, who knows. But it fits the narrative since Siggurd’s father took the Ravenstone from a dragon and sought to keep it from them for 15 years before passing it to his son. This dragon and Tropor Darbeard have to be aligned together and the presence of a mind flayer needlessly complicates the entire thing. Also, the thought from Darius is that Rhenna might actually be a drow and subtly disguised as a human.

We wanted to stay out of the Common Room so we ordered food and beer and hid in the chamber. It was a good thing because Olaff Olaffson did walk in, drinking and looking around for a minute (missed the 2 members at the bar) before grumbling and leaving. What did he want? No one cares, just keep out of his way.

The next morning we are up early, eat, load everything on the wagon, and hit the gates of Thak by 7:30 to roll out of here. And on the walls of Thak over the gates is the bandaged and robed figure of the Ambassador, watching the group as they rode off.

The trip from Thak is without issue and they arrive in Sorton a day and a half later, about a day before the caravan is to take them to Base Camp. They are paid by 3rd Reeve Spearo  and the group leaves the next noon for the 3 day journey to Base Camp. They arrive on Workmonth the 1st and we hear from first the Bailiff Youngston Illytch as to what’s been going on, then from Bobkins who wants to go back and hire a bunch of people to find his friends.

We discuss how that isn’t going to happen for a while until we hear a single blast and the entire Camp empties out to see the “B” team, laden down and tired, arrive back here and tell their tale of heroism and deeds. The entire team is stunned, did all that happen? Have the underestimated the B team all this time? They team confers with the A team and lets them know what happened before loading up on the caravan and heading BACK to Sorton for their training and to sell off what treasures they discovered. It was now 4:30 in the afternoon on Workmonth the 1st and the party was going to discuss what was to happen next and how to go about it.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Meet 52, Adv 4.2, 6/9/18

When I first mapped out the campaign, I had a twist in the beginning where the clan the party works for and gets fucked over seems to be good and on the up and up. But eventually when the bring the original betrayer in they realize that their benefactors are not actually the good guys, but are the bad guys.

That was revealed at this meeting and I've been sitting on that nugget for a year and a half in real time. It leads right to the larger and true campaign BBG that will dog the party on a going forward.

Write up follows:

It was Firemonth the 23rd and the group knew that today was the day they were going to face Siggurd. They needed to get him out of town from Slagbottom and discussed a few ways to do that, dispensing with boats and rafts since it was a bit outside their skill set. The decision was to head to the Sickly Cat on River Road and check the place over.

It was 20-25 minutes to walk there, River Road was the 7th block between Central Gate and Main Gate off of Main Street, and Hardslope Road was the 4th block from the docks and the Enderlyn River. The entirety of Slagbottom was at a 10 degree angle here, running towards the Enderlyn. An open sewer line ran through parts of the main street where sweepers kept the effluvium running along during operating hours (until 9 PM). The Sickly Cat was surrounded by low rent single and two story buildings for residents, a rat catchers, painters, liquor store, and other such locales. The Cat itself had two main doors but there was a third door that led to the alley, a maze of narrow passages just a bit over 2’ wide with garbage within.

We felt comfortable with the place, knowing that we’d most likely gird him in the alley and would arrange to have the material stacked and blocking key areas. But they didn’t want to hang around the too much now. They also saw no easy way to smuggle his body out of here. The thought was to get a wagon or cart and position it 6 blocks up on River Road and Main Street.

The group went back to House Illytch where they went to speak with 3rd Reeve Spearo. He was happy they had finished their training and they had 5 days to kill before the caravan could bring them back so the time was their own. They made noises about heading back to Thak and Spearo was thrilled to hear it. He had an order of 1,500 lbs. of timber to be sent there for a private buyer and the group would be getting 500 lbs. of metal stuff to bring back. Heck, we’d even get caravan rates of 2 nobles/day (3 for Darius who would be the driver). Basic food would be included (a hammered mess of dried nuts, dried meat, and some sort of course grain called “Meatloaf”) and two oxen would be made available.

We took the job, agreed to leave tonight or so and went to check out the wagon. It was a ton and a quarter Conestoga type heavy axle wagon and the timber load left some space by the buckboard. We grabbed extra tarps; made sure the barrels and supplies were tied down, and then left to look at places.

Darius’ problem was the trip from the Sickly Cat to House Illytch was long, even if he jogged it, a lone man jogging through the streets at night was going to attract attention and we didn’t want to do that – plus the group would be with Siggurd for almost an hour and whatever could go wrong would go wrong. Wanted to limit the time.

We then went to Central Quarter and looked around. A few wheelhouses and garages were just inside the gate – cutting the trip down to 11 minutes or so – much better for the party. At Southern Garage and cart house, Darius arranged for a spot, paid for it in advance, and also made sure that there would be guards on hand to watch it.

We then went back to House Illytch, made sure there was enough food for us, and took the wagon fully laden back to Central Quarter and Southern Garage, drove it in, and left it there. We also dropped off our own bags and backpacks. Avulstein was asked about his goat and chickens if he wanted them fed and was told not to worry. The two young teamsters shrugged and thought it was strange.

As the day passed into evening, we had gone back to the Sickly Cat and moved some boxes and barrels around the alleys, making it a choke point and difficult for someone to run their way free. We then ate and by 9:30, was headed back there to get a lay of the land.

The Crowcatcher was lit at mid-block, giving indistinct light at the end by the gaming house. The moon was waxing but still only about half way. Many of the residential homes had a few lights burning in the windows but as the night wore on, they one by one were snuffed out. Connal went to the liquor store and got a jack of cheapish beer and then took up residence in a corner near the front and had his head down drinking slowly. The rest of the group was in the alleys behind the gaming house – Negan and Barb filling up the larger spot for now while Avulstein and Darius were closer in.

A drunk was looking to sleep in a wide part of the alley nearby but Barb inspired him to move on to another block. A bit later the Rat catcher came out and bid hello to Connal before hitting the alleys with a stout club and a few bags. Later on a prostitute was seen walking the next block over, her circlet coming back to River Road every 10 minutes or so. Darius intercepted her and gave her enough money for three hours if she would just go away for now. Two friends came out of the Sickly Cat talking about the game and the benefits of inside straight or not but Connal didn’t chat with them and they sort of moved on into the dark streets.

Then it was almost half passed 11 when we heard the cries and yells inside. Complaints of “Cheat!” echoed from within followed by complaining and stumbling. The back door to the Cat burst open and Siggurd and two others (human and dwarf, both female) were thrown into the alley and the door slammed closed. They all got up and started hammering on the door when the party ran up to attack.

The dwarven woman was complaining, “Some dog is attacking me!” and Siggurd was shaking his head as Darius launched and attack, Connal joining a moment later with a flying leap. The party was looking to pull their blows, going more for knock out than kill shots.

But that fell apart quickly as Siggurd and his group had no compunctions, convinced they were being mugged. The dwarven female had wickedly heady hand axe in her hand and slammed it down on Avulstein a few times and then took a bullet to the head and the shoulder from Darius. Seeing the wolverine on the floor, she stalked towards Darius who was backing up swiftly. The other female had two knives and held her own as Connal tried to engage her and Siggurd. But Siggurd had short sword and dagger and he wove a shield of glittering blades around him as the group struggled to keep the momentum going.

Barb took shot after shot, Darius tried to sling again but the axe wielder smashed him good and hard, tearing tons of hit points away. Our necromancer was down to single digits when Barb risked her own neck and dragged the wolverine out of the fight and down the alley behind her, spear back to the front as she fought Siggurd barely in place. Avulstein ran around to the front of the building and wove his arcanic power – animating one of the big rats from the back before he smashed through the front window of the rat catcher’s shop.

Negan stood with Darius, short handled battle axe swinging left and right with the intent to drive the dwarven woman back. The party was just hanging on but losing hit points when finally, the dwarf dropped. With now 5 on 2, Siggurd realized who he was fighting and wanted to escape. He charged Barb, engaging her directly with a mass of cuts and scrapes, twisting and wrestling the half-orc until he managed to appear behind her and in the alley.

Negan threw his AC to the wind and charged AROUND the lone shanty, slipping in the filth to come about the opposite of the long alley and before Siggurd could run, he cocked his arm back and HURLED the 12# battle axe through the air where it slammed Siggurd in the back and sent him smashing into a nearby building.

The lone fighter with the daggers was losing ground at two on one and Avulstein was in the Rat Catcher’s shop…but did not open the back door, was instead scooping up dead rats and tossing them into his bag. As the fight continued and Siggurd was running out of options, he was struck AGAIN…and instead of Siggurd, the drunk that had been chased away by Barb was hit! From the next block over, we heard a smash of a body falling and Siggurd’s confused voice.

The last fighter was dropped as Connal hit the streets hard, running to Siggurd who was struggling to get to his feet. The group gave chase and the monk hit Siggurd, once in the chest, and then again…but his 2nd blow hit the Rat Catcher instead and we heard ANOTHER smashing sound from Siggurd from another block over! The group all hit the block together (Avulstein finally coming out of the shop and was robbing the two women on the floor).

The watch was being called and the group all surrounded Siggurd and knocked him out at long last. Negan hoisted the unconscious Siggurd on his shoulders and Darius RAN for the Main Street and eventually South Garage, telling the group to head UP River Road and wait for him in the alley just before Main Street.

The group abandoned the area and made their way north two blocks before they were stopped by some watch running to the area. They questioned Negan and Barb both wearing stars, telling them to patrol the Randari Quarter instead and to leave Slagbottom to them. We thanked them and kept going.

Meanwhile Darius, bleeding badly, drank a healing draught and stopped at a local bar where he asked for a mug of beer. He was watched strangely as he took the beer, and washed his face and shirt with it, blood and dirt running off. The proprietor asked him if he was ok, and Darius replied, “No! And thanks for the beer, it was good.” Before leaving.

At the gate he was let through after some questioning and then went to Southern Garage. The guards there let him in, helped him get ready to go, and informed him that they fed the goats and chickens because they felt bad for the animals’ obvious neglect. He drove the heavy wagon towards Main Street, through the gate, and towards the exit to Sorton. He stopped at River Road and the group brought the unconscious Siggurd to the wagon and shoved him under the buckboard, stacking barrels and tarps around him. We then all got on board and drove to the main gate where a group of 6 guards checked us out, insulted Barb, and let us pass.

We drove away for two hours, hitting Siggurd again and again in the head to keep him out until after 1:30 and far enough away, pulled over and made to rest. Siggurd was roused and we tried to get the Ravenstone off his neck – unable to even see it except out of the corner of our eye. It refused every option to come off even hanging him upside down.

We then felt we were far enough away from the city to talk to Siggurd. The conversation did NOT go in the direction we expected.  Once he learned he was being brought back to Tropor Darbeard in Thak he got quiet and said little except staring at the sky.

Eventually he shrugged his shoulders and sighed. Tells the group that they are right and he is sorry. Sorry for lots of things. “Made some real fucked up choices in my life and abused a gift that he should have been honored to receive and treated properly.”

He then dropped onto us that we, everyone, was mistaken about the Darbeards. When it comes to the Nuggle thing (selling him out and to the kobolds) he grimaces and apologizes. “My beef wasn’t with you, just the fucking Darbeards. You were just in the way and witnesses.” If he could have done it without putting anyone else in danger, he would have but all he was thinking was getting out of fucking Thak as fast as possible with as much of a grubstake as he could get. House Brinster had the money, House Darbeard was delving into some fucked up stuff, and Tropor isn’t as much of a fucking saint as he pretends to be.

He fingers the Ravenstone and says that his father gave it to his about 5 years ago, and that his father managed to get it 15 years before that. The Darbeards are working with some draconic that had it before Siggurd and have been looking for it for all this time. They got close but Siggurd’s father threw off the scent by passing it on to his son. The holder of the Ravenstone cannot be augured, divined, or scried to see if he has it – and even past scrying is muddied up to 24 hours. But, the only way to give it up is to either take it off his corpse or for him to relinquish it to another. Since you’re going to Thak, he does NOT want any of the Darbeard’s to get it – no matter what.

He accepts that he wasted and squandered his gift, but he won’t let the Darbeards get the stone now, not after keeping it from them for the last 20 years. He is willing to give it to someone in the party if they swear 2 things – don’t tell the Darbeards they have it, and keep it safe from whatever forces are looking for it.

We talked about it and decided that as we get closer to Thak, we’ll make that decision. Connal used his headband of discerning and assured that that Siggurd was telling the absolute truth. We rested and then rode on the 24th and arrived just outside of Thak in the early morning of the 25th. The call was to give the Ravenstone to Barb – it has to go to someone not tainted by the Weave and who is not a person of nobility.

Making sure that she knows not to give it to the Darbeards, he told her “There is no way I want the fucking Darbeards to get their hands on this, I’d rather give it up to you. He then grabbed the plaque it was on and with some difficulty, lifted it free of his chest and intoned: “I hereby pass on this oculus of my own free as it was passed on to me. May the Thoughts and Memories that guide the All Father do the same for its new holder through the tangled roots of Yggdrasil.”

The Ravenstone lifted free and was pulsing a black and brown color before Barb lifted he hand as if drawn to the gem…and it snapped to her grip along with a faint inrushing of air. She blinked rapidly as she saw a ghostly image wavering in front of her as if from the stone’s point of view, looking at Siggurd as he says, “There’s no way I want the fucking Darbeards to get their hands on this, I’d rather give it up to you.”

Then the image faded and another ghost glimpse from the stone looking at another man, older, similar looking to Siggurd and says, “There’s not a chance they won’t come after me now that they’ve found me, son. It’s safer in your hands from this point on.”

Then another flash and a ghost glimpse of a black dragon screaming in agony as a younger version of the last man has a sword in the dragon’s heart and is twisting the blade as the dragon hisses out, “A pox on you and yours! You fucking hairless Ape! My father will avenge my death!”

Then a fainter ghostly glimpse of a dwarven female flayed with her guts strewn all over, acid scoring on her face and hands, feebly holding up the Ravenstone and sobbing, “Alright! Alright! For the love of Odin I’ll do it just please spare my family.”

And then even fainter an orcish fighter with a pair of dwarven crossbow bolts in his chest hunched over a young frightened orc, blood everywhere looking up at a dwarven female flatbower sobbing, “Alright! It’s yours, but in the All Father’s Name, please don’t hurt my son.”

And finally even older and fainter, an old tusked matronly orc handing the stone over and saying, “This has helped guide our Famyr and Clannar for centuries, my son. May its wisdom guide you as it has done me.”

There are some residual orcish ghostly shapes but no more words to be heard.

Siggurd let Barb know that she can’t ever not have the stone, it will always appear upon her person. It also cannot be scried for, just not showing up. The longer she has it, the more skills and powers that opens up for her. However, in the beginning the stone gives everyone who possess it to understand just about any spoken language and speak the same language back in return.