Saturday, 16 March 2013

Session 6 Punjar Saga II: Dragora's Dungeon 13-17/5/713 NR

Dragora's Dungeon
Eons past the fabled sorcerer-kings of Parhok perished in the rain of eldritch fire that destroyed Arkhosia. But legends hold that one tribe survived the apocalypse, fleeing with their slaves to a hidden city, where the greatest enchanters of all time could sleep away the centuries, and awaken in a future age as rulers of a ruined land...

Now once more the forbidden magic threatens the good folk of the Known Realms. A kingdom lies ensorcelled, a royal family ensnared by the forgotten dweomers of a long-dead race. When the best attempts of seers and diviners have failed, it falls to the heroes to save the kingdom.

Have the sorcerer-kings risen to reclaim their bejeweled thrones? Or has a more sinister power bent their ancient magics to its sinister will? Only the most courageous and cunning of heroes will emerge victorious from Dragora's Dungeon!

Ape-Man Palace Infiltrator: 500
The Emerald Frog (ex Lord Viridius):  450
Descent Into the Rift: 300
Shattered Gates of Parhok: 125
Chamber of Eldritch Wizardry
Needlefang Drake Swarm: 187
14 Decrepit Skeletons: 350
Gelatinous Cube Trap: 400
Imp Menace: 100
Total: 2412/7=345 to party tally
345+2269 = 2614 XP
Erik's account 60 XP bonus, +2614=2674 XP.

Need 3750 XP for Level 4.
PCs on max XP: Leon, Rex, Erik, Tasarus + level up: Jenn, Adell 

PCs 2nd level: Maldar

Session 6 account - Erik Van Karsen (Pierre)

Erik’s Journal
Dragora’s Dungeon – Entry 1:
I am very thankful for the few months of respite the Gods granted us after the purging of the Beggar King’s lair. The winged horror that nearly slaughtered our party was still haunting my nightmares, but we all had time to recuperate from our various injuries. The only evidence I kept from our trials was a pretty nasty - and very itchy - scar above my left temple, a reminder of how dangerous running headlong into a crossbow bolt can be.
The Overlord’s Palace is a beautiful place and our lodging more than spacious. That comfort, added to the un-eventful bodyguard roles we had been assigned, might explained why we were so easily overwhelmed that night. I dimly remember fighting against a very strong urge to fall asleep, before being forcefully woken up by Rex.  Still dazed by what must have been some form of sleeping spell, I rushed outside our quarters, leaving Rex to wake up the rest of our comrades. I found Jenn in the hallway, already fighting some sort of humanoid ape, enveloped by bluish fumes. Attuning to the arcane currents around me, I felt the censer that the beast was carrying to be the point of origin of the enchantment. He quickly fell beneath our furious blows and Geroff woke up just in time to witness him warn us with his last breath:
“Tell your master his daughter will have her revenge! She is coming for him!”
What I would have taken to be the ramblings of a mad creature turned out to be a lot more sinister. Jenn confessed that she had heard rumours of the Overlord’s indiscretions producing a female offspring, quickly spirited away to avoid any scandal.  Such a girl would have a serious motive for vengeance, and if the raw power emanating from the sleeping spell was any indication, she had mastered some astonishing magical skills during her exile. Panicked palace guards broke up our discussion, alerting us that the Overlord and his family had also been exposed to the sleeping spell:
“But they can’t be woken up! We tried everything!”
This was very bad news indeed… The infiltrator now dead, our only link to the culprit was the sleeping spell; I extended my consciousness to reach the magical energy still lingering around the man-ape censer. The enchantment did transit through the artefact, but it wasn’t the point of origin. By holding the censer, I managed to get a sense of its location: somewhere within the Black Swamp. Strangely enough, the place had already caught my attention recently and I had planned to investigate further... Our party, now joined by a fearsome looking fighter named Kobbe, set out straight away, guided by the magical thread between the censer and the power source.
                Swamps are dangerous places; any civilised humanoid is completely out of his element there, fighting both treacherous terrain and wildlife. We indeed were expecting monstrous reptiles, carnivorous plants or haunting spectres, but not what jumped out of nowhere, clearly intent on murdering Leon:  a giant, comical-looking emerald frog. He luckily caught a glimpse of the amphibian before any of us did, throwing one of his faithful shurikens at it and avoiding the leaping creature within seconds. But the frog wasn’t to be underestimated. Once it closed in with Leon its rage and cheer bulk rolled over our poor rogue before we could slay the beat. To be honest, the determination of the emerald frog was quite intriguing and the relief Leon expressed upon seeing the animal corpse confirmed that he personally had something to do with this ambush. As mysterious as always, he kept his secrets for himself, only keeping an eye of the monster as a “souvenir”.

(3 days later, in the Mountains of Nerath south of the Black Swamp)
                After that first bloody incident the journey remained quiet, the pulsation coming for the censer becoming stronger and stronger. We finally reached the edge of a very impressive ravine, bordered by the ruins of long forgotten buildings, covered with vegetation. Unnatural steam was floating up from a partly obscured lake at the bottom, some 200 feet below. The source of the spell was located directly below us, I was sure of it. We resigned to climb down the cliff using ropes and grappling hooks, until we reached a plateau jutting out of the cliff, leading to a set of shattered heavy doors. An old rusty blade trap greeted the landing of our group, but was promptly disarmed by Rex. The corridor led to the upper-level of a multi-layered room, like concentric steps leading down a unique exit. A quick glance at the various bits and pieces littering the floor and furniture indicated some sort of ancient magic laboratory. We were definitely not the only there though: a maniacal laughter soon resonated throughout the place. As Kobbe, Adell and I set up to go around the room, sticking the walls as much as we could, a daring Leon decided to crawl across a pitiful looking bridge crossing the emptiness  between each side of our level. This bold move wasn’t exactly rewarded as expected. The laughter intensified and the sound of a rope being cut was heard, preceding the fall of a large glass orb right in front of Leon. We could just watch from afar as a swarm of tiny needlefang drakes rushed out of the shards towards him. As if waiting for this very moment, skeletons all across the rooms sprang back to life, aiming decrepit bows at us. Badly wounded, Leon retreated to safety while the rest of the group took care of the situation with a ruthless efficiency. So much so that I must admit that my sword wasn’t of any use this time, as I couldn’t reach those bags of bones faster than the long-ranged attacks of the rest of the party did.
                The chamber didn’t contain anything interesting and we were about to jump down to the doors on the lowest level when Leon stopped us all on our tracks:
“Something isn’t right… See that sort of… Veil… Floating?”
His keen perception saved us. The small space in front of the door was completely covered by a translucent gelatinous cube “lying” in wait. We quickly retreated to the upper floor, giving enough space for Tasarus to reduce it to acidic goop with its powers. After that, only a little bit of acrobatics were required to open the door without falling into the acid, but we cleared the way quickly. The following corridor gave way to a small bridge overlooking a wild torrent. The owner of the maniacal laughter chose this spot to make his first appearance, a pudgy winged mass trying to push Kobbe to his death in the rushing water. He did recover in time but the little imp got away before any of us could react.

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Session 5 account - Hayden

session 5 part 1

Session 5 - The Beggar King and a touch of death, so much death....

With a sudden turn for the worst Maldar broke into a coughing fit and fever no doubt brought about his expulsion of power displayed earlier, Jenn decided it would be best to escort him back to Smokey Joes along with Zinsara to keep Maldar from getting any worse and to check that Lady Constance had done nothing rash should she not of heeded Jenn's advice of waiting. Leon shook Maldar's hand wishing him a speedy recovery and promptly palmed a small stone into his pocket while taking the platinum piece that was on his person and with that he sent them on their way.

After a short rest reinforcements arrived from the master of smoke in the form a half elven tempest fighter named Red Adell, while the main party searched the chamber for treasure and anything else that may be of use, Leon scouted ahead entering a cavern with a large shimmering green rat statue with gems for eyes beneath which lay a king’s ransom in gold and jewellery, looking around for any signs of traps he could find none but noticed a large amount of rat holes lining the chamber and a door to the left of the statue unsure how best to proceed he returned to the party. Which in the meantime had uncovered a secret chamber with rusted chest and broken lock Rex was able to de-activate the trap plugging holes with rocks and snipping the trip wire then claimed the 12gp in the chest as hazard pay. Leon relayed his find about the room ahead everyone's eyes lighting up at mention of king’s ransom in treasure. The Party moved with excitement in their step hoping this would be the big payoff they had been waiting for as they entered cavern, Anger and offense fell across the face of Erik as he looked over the statue revealing it to be an idol to the god numouth "I must destroy it, for bahamut!!" before he could launch his assault Rex grabbed him by the shoulder explaining it had been inlaid with runes although unable to tell what they could do. Tasasrus managed to get cooler to heads prevail determining the risk to great even by the party's standards.

Disappointed by having to forfeit the hefty sum of treasure a sudden wailing and groan was heard beyond the door, Erik finding the door was bolted from the other side vented some of his anger busting the door open and there in front of him stood a half man half shadow with bloated gut, withered limbs a decaying crown that had depressed into the skull of slightly rotting flesh and sores that oozed a black magical necrotic energy which had pooled and slowly formed a ring around him. The Beggar king was found, with an other worldly groan that travelled up the charnel tower Bats began swooping and filling the area Rex was able to launch a dagger that struck home before the bats obscured the king. Tasarus was able to let loose a bolt of lightning causing serious wounds to the beggar king only to have him spew a stream of black ooze over Erik and Rex that drew their life-force away, his bloated form deflating briefing only for the black ooze to be re-ingested and pour out of the sores to repair the wounds done by the lightning bolt. Leon then ran through the bats which was opportunity enough for them latch onto him and deliver their cruel bites, seeking refuge near the furnace only for some sort of undead horror to start reaching for him from within it

Erik was next driving through the shroud of bats shield first pulling up alongside Leon he glanced at the furnace and back at the beggar king and determined that leaving Leon to hold off the undead while he attacked the beggar king would lead to certain victory he quickly imparted some healing on Leon and moved into the necrotic aura muttering litanies of bahamut as he steeled himself to face the beggar king. The bats swarmed over Rex blinding him and forcing him to fall back otherwise he surely would fallen to their bites and claws. Leon moved to close the furnace door searing the skin on his hands as he did so, the undeard thumping against the furnace door eventually their strength over whelmed Leon pushing him back and leaving handprints of flesh on the furnace door then piles of ash and red hot bones fell to the ground and began assembling themselves back to their intended form. Embers scatted into the air from the burning skeletons as they turned to attack Leon he was able to shatter some bones of one but barely damaged the other without warning the beggar king sent bolt of shadow magic into the rogue damaging him further. Reeling from the damage done by the beggar king the skeletons struck their necrotic and burning blades nearly dropping the emerald crow.

session 5 part 2

Red Adell to rushed through the shroud of bats with little damage followed up by Tasarus summoning a wall of shimmering radiant light that destroyed a skeleton and aided his allies, unfortunately the aid of radiant energy was not enough for the emerald crow the fire and burns along with necrotic energy rotting the unburnt skin proved too much. Hearing his allies screeches and gurgle of death the litanies of bahamut grew into fervent rage a divine presence washed over Erik, he then cleaved the beggar king from shoulder to hip in a single swing, the necrotic energy surrounding him began to bubble up in to the air then dissipated, the remaining skeleton exploded into a cloud of ash, the bats no longer having another controlling them fled back into the shadows from where they came.

A deep rumbling resonated throughout underground complex the party had enough time to perform some triage on Leon putting out the remaining flames then managing their own wounds before rocks started crashing down around them they fled up the stairs winding their way up the charnel tower, Starlight and cool clear night greeted them as they exited the winding staircase taking a deep breath of clean air and relief that the beggar king had fallen and now planning their way off the tower, Tasarus looked to the skies to enjoy the celestial display but something else caught his eye that was diving towards the tower and it was large, larger than anything the party had faced before, An Umbral drake clearly this had come through the portal that the beggar king opened. The Drake landed crushing some of the stonework under its weight, sensing danger Leon threw a dagger that punctured throw the scaly hide then promptly scurried back down the stairs, as the drake's black inky necrotic breath blasted across the tower with Rex somersaulting to avoid and Tasarus using his magic to defend against it, however Erik and Red Adell let their defences slip allowing the inky breath to wash over them the coldness chilling them to the bone and sapping valuable strength. Red Adell moved towards the drake and attempted strike it in order to lure the beast down from its perch unfortunately there was no need as she went to strike it moved down on its own accord her blade skittering across its claws. The drake's gaze fell upon red adell the bite she was able to dodge the claws not so as they sent her sprawling across the ground she was to arrest herself with her swords cutting into the stone bringing her to a stop with only her legs hanging over the edge of the tower her heart racing as death had come to close. The drake then turned its attention back to the others as Tasarus was able to launch some lighting and Erik moved into attack dragon like creature while Rex displaying his agility ran along the narrow tower edge to another platform in order to flank the drake, although weakened Erik was still able to damage the drake though it heeded him as not much more than a bug as its attention was fully on the wizard who had blasted it with lighting it's razor sharp jaw bit Tasarus clamping down on an arm nearly severing it, still holding Tasurus by the arm in its jaw the claws then hacked him from his arm and ripped open grievous wounds that were beyond mortal skill to heal...

Leon sped out from the protection offered by the stairs while Erik defended himself his shield arm starting to buckle under the counterattack eventually forced to his knees until his defence finally failed, Leon’s mind in panic either to help the unconscious Erik or attack the drake. He followed the path Rex had taken to flank the drake, luck smiled on Leon as he was able to land a flurry of strikes garnering a strike of claws himself for his troubles quickly he gulped a healing potion, while Rex had slipped on a ring shadow and moved to backup Leon. The potion provided little help for again the drake let loose his inky black breathe it sapping what remained of Leon and Red Adell strength both passing into Unconsciousness, now only leaving Rex and the drake to duel for victory while the others held off death for as long as possible except for Tasarus who had found himself in more dilapidated area of what seemed to be punjar but colour of the land slowly faded to muted shades of grey his celestial memories allowed him to recall that this was the grey waste why was he here and not the green fields of Elysium? as celestial being surely that is where he should be in death...

session 5 part 3

Rex weaved and dodged his shadowy form proving frustrating for the drake although equally his blades were unable to puncture the scaly hide, finally both foes struck against each other Rex nearly killing the drake if its claws hadn't clipped him. It came down to whoever could strike would likely be the victor, the drakes claws lashed out slash after slash with Rex deflecting or tumbling out of the way finally he got the drakes timing and launched a dagger as it reared up to strike again, the dagger punctured through the drakes eye and deep into its skull the beast collapsed it's head landing inches from Rex it's last breath of air cast over him. Hunched over in exhaustion and bleeding Rex let slip a small smile of which no one was around to see.

After reviving his friends who had fought with every inch of their beings to keep death at bay and strapping what was left of Tasarus to Erik the group made their way back to Smokey Joes where they found Jenn and Maldar waiting. Geroff Nisjal greets the party and welcomes them to rest before presenting themselves to the overlord. The remains of Tasarus were taken to a temple in an attempt to be resurrected.

Tasarus had begun walking through the grey waste the memory of his friends slowly fading as the grey waste was beginning its work on the poor soul then in front of him the air ripped apart revealing an ornate golden portal with stairwell that spiralled down but at the same time looked to lead up, with the sweet smell of life filling his lungs and voices filling his ears Tasarus entered the portal...

Returned to life Tasarus was brought to overlord’s palace and as with everyone else throwing a large party in their honour and providing the reward of platinum pieces and offering them all quarters with balconies overlooking royal gardens...

The Overlord still needs his sellswords take what rest you need and you will hear from me in time.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Session 5: End of the Beggar King 13/2/713. Reach Level 3.

Jenn Morgan escorts out the exhausted Maldar, and they return to Smokey Joe's with Zinsara. The group are joined by another of Geroff's allies, the former gladiator Red Adell. 
The group find a hidden alcove containing a trapped chest, but most of the treasure is gone, only a few coins remain. Pressing on, the group find a statue of Niramuth, the Rat God of Punjar, 'guarding' a pile of treasure. Erik wants to take the treasure despite the hundreds of rat-holes in the cavern, but wiser counsel prevails.
Opening the last door, the group confront the Beggar King at the base of the Charnel Tower, surrounded by a black aura in front of the lit charnel-oven. He is trapped in an eternal ritual, acting as a portal between this world and the Shadowhold. Swarms of shadow-bats attack; Leon closes the charnel oven but burnt Cinder Skeletons clamber forth to attack, while flame and black energy blasts from the King. Leon falls, but then as the Beggar King dies the bats disperse and the skeletons crumble to dust. A healing potion restores Leon, but then the dungeons begin to collapse!
The group flee up the stairs of the Charnel Tower, where stars twinkle in the blue light of pre-dawn. But above the final threat awaits; a great Umbral Drake, released into the world by the Beggar King's death.
The monster proves too much for the party, scouring them with deadly shadow-breath, biting and clawing. Heroes fall until only Rex Deveron still stands, using the Shadow Ring to bolster him. A dagger to the eye and at last the drake falls. Rex manages to save most of the party, but Tasarus is dead. 
Taking his body, the group leave the Smoke as dawn rises in the east (ca 07.30am), the sun dispersing the rain and smoke that has hung over the slums. Baroness Constance has left, her coach has apparently come at last. Geroff Nisjal thanks them, and informs them that the Overlord wishes to reward them personally and offer them a place in his personal retinue...
That evening, a cleaned-up party is presented to Overlord Amatheus in his Royal Court, a plump fellow who lounges on his throne surrounded by a bevy of concubines. Amatheus doles out the promised platinum coins, thanks them for their services, and offers them a place in his palace. The heroes accept, looking forward to their luxurious quarters with balconies overlooking the jasmine and rose-scented royal gardens, where fountains patter in the warm air of spring...

But what danger still threatens Punjar, that the Overlord needs such rough fellows in his court?

Evading Spear Trap on chest: 200
Not Messing with Rat God Statue: 250
Beggar King, Cinder Skeletons, & Bats: 950
Defeat the Umbra Drake: 1500
Level 3 Major Quest - Destroy the Beggar King: 750
Total: 3650/5=730
 730+1447 = 2177
Hayden's Session 5 account: 46 XP + 2177 = 2223 XP
Hayden's Session 4 account 46 XP +2223 = 2269 XP
Need 3750 XP for Level 4.

PCs on max XP: Leon, Rex, Erik & Tasarus
PCs 2nd level: Jenn, Maldar, Adell.