The Tisa Valley adventurers have developed a tradition – to hold a small gathering early in the new year to brighten the dark winter months. This year Morgan and Ravenna joined them, along with other guests and spent a pleasant evening with good food and good company.
But the next morning the guests went their separate ways – some across the sea to Llaminusia, to attempt to reclaim the deepwater port from the demons, and some into the Cleve, to investigate the claims of theft by some angry Dwarves.
Player Mission: Reclaim the Port
The land of Llaminusia lies across the sea to the east, considered by some to be part of Ithron under the protection of it’s King and it’s law. On the border of Seruma and Tholon, the country has always been at threat by the darkness in Tholon, which came to a point when the Mist rolled through the land during the time of the Lord of Shadows and the invasion by Tholon and the Konn. Consumed by the mist and the darkness that threatened shrines, veiling the people from the light of the Gods, it became a land of despair and for a time many in Ithron thought the people lost.
But through the grace of the Gods and with more than a liberal dose of Traldan luck, some of the people of Llaminusia have survived. Some in the highlands, some in the lowlands, gathering together in places of strength, places of power, to wait out the storm. Feeling abandoned, feeling desperately alone, cut off from the Gods and the conquerors who claimed their King would protect them – their anger has turned to rage and hatred of the Ithronians. But they have not been abandoned, not by some Ithronians. Ranger Al has been organising return trips to the country – making a trip with some Tisa Valley adventures to the Highland Thing where the Primate of Vleybor earnt the right to speak before the gathered council as an equal. This time he plans to travel to the Lowland Thing, where he would put forward the offer of aid in clearing out the demons that have been reported in the area and free the port. But this would come at a price.
The adventurers who travelled to that land were:
- General Colt Garrison of the Mercenaries Guild;
- Guild Enforcer Al and Solstice of the Scouts Guild;
- Master Ash of Stocktown and Robert Chopper of the Guild of Alchemists;
- Schoolmaster Malabayn Bogaert, Miss Woodbury, Guildsman Morgan Corvidae and Guildsman Bedect of the School of Demonology; Guildsman Daniel of the School of Thaumaturgy;
- Knight Commander Sir Marcus Drake of the Knightly Templar Order; Sir Stewart De Piercy, Head of Order, and Errant Stafford du Bayard of the Knightly Griffin Order; Errant Ravenna Corvidae of the Knightly Black Order;
- Primate Bill Burns of Longstor; Primate Olivia De Haviland of Vleybor;
Gathering together in the Tisa Valley the adventurers were informed that they were to act as the spear point, to travel to Llaminusia to speak at the Thing and prepare the way for the supply ships and the troops who would follow after to aid the reclamation of the country in the name of the King, as well as those who would travel in time to help rebuild the land and allow it to flourish. But first, the only deep water port accessible to the Ithronians had to be reclaimed – and that would require fighting through demons and dealing with whatever sank the last ship that tried to make port. Reports had reached Al of the sea boiling with blood and demons roaming the port. With that grim news before them, many could have chosen to remain in Ithron, but none did. All made their preparations, and travelled by Dragon Boat to Llaminusia, to be followed in time by a number of Scouts, Mercenaries, Templars and Black Knight reinforcements and assorted support personnel.
Arriving on the shore they were forced to wade through the water, some among them choosing the take off their armour before leaping over the side of the shallow boat into the cold sea. As Ravenna bent to buckle on her greaves, Al and other members of the party spoke with some of the locals who had come to direct them to the Thing. They were furious when, after being asked, the mages continued to conduct rituals, taking grievance that the “invaders” were continuing to do what they liked once again. After travelling further inland on foot the party arrived at the Thing – the gathering of the people, spoken like “ting” – sheltered by blessings of a Vleyborian holy site. Upon arrival many of the party paid due respect to a Shrine to the White Lady, keeping their hands away from weapons to avoid causing offence. Then the talking began. Al, speaking in Llaminusian and with a member of the people acting as translator, offered the aid of Ithron to deal with the demons and help rebuild the country. There was much discussion, argument and debate – with three main factions of Llaminusians either for, against or undecided against the Ithronian arguements. Whilst all this happened Lady Olivia, having caught up with her old Defender of the Faith, worked to consecrate the Shrine which was slowly ebbing away. As she did so, the soul that had become trapped in the hammer lying on the Shrine as its focus was freed into Lady Vleybor’s care, and Ravenna witnessed it go with awe and amazement. Praying before the Shrine to her god she heard him whisper that the soul was in safe hands until it chose to make the journey on to the Halls. Satisfied, she reassured the Primate that all was well and wholesome.
The Thing eventually agreed that, with Ranger Al and a Warden, they would work with the Ithronians to rebuild their country. But first they had to secure the port, fighting off the demons that prowled the land and threatened the people. The adventurers geared up, counted their spellcards, prepared their minds for battle and quaffed a little alchemy before heading into a bank of lingering mist. It was strange, this mist, that it clung around them and preyed on their darker fears, or did it comfort them in this dark time? Who can say, it affected each differently and few would choose to talk about it.
They came upon a group of men who turned out to be Konnish with demons in tow. Another wave came upon them, and then another that came at the party with a greater number of demons. As the mages got rid of the demons and enchanted bows that peppered the front line of Knights and their shields, there came upon them something they had not seen before – something large and hulking and monstrous. But the adventurers were overwhelmed and pushed back, leaving members of their party bleeding and poisoned in their wake. Through some stroke of luck, and quick thinking by members of the School of Demonology, most of the party were saved through the blessings of the gods and the potions carried by the party. Alas, Ranger Al lay where he fell never to get up again, and Master Ash’s apprentice lay amongst the fallen bodies. There was some discussion as to the legalities of searching the bodies and taking what they needed, and Ravenna asked for Kharach’s protection upon the lost souls that now wandered alone in the dark, unable to aid them herself. Unable to take the bodies with them the Longstorians suggested putting the bodies in the bushes until they could come back for them. Somehow the Primate was able to ask the land to assist and the bodies were entangled in thorns and cloaked in ice so that nothing could harm them. Getting them out of the ice might be another matter … and at this time it became clear that something was wrong – Ranger Al’s soul was missing and no one recalled fighting off and killing the monster that had torn through them, the Ogre with the Crystal Claws.
Their deaths, whilst unfortunate, would not stop the mission and so the adventurers continued on to the port. As they approached the mist seemed to thicken and the priests were able to discern, amidst the haze, a distinct religious aura. The mages were also able to discern two distinct demonological taints and a plan of action was devised – to secure the religious site, clear the market then take the port. Their plan of attack prepared, they made for what they hoped was a shrine. Whilst there they found locals fighting back against the demons and Konn, who were terrified at the sight of more strangers prepared for battle. But to their amazement these newcomers placed themselves between them and their enemy, and fought them off. With a chance to breathe the adventurers took it – praying before the shrine to Crowa, speaking with the Crowan priest who could not lay down his burden until these people were saved, and doing what they could to prepare for the next step of their plan. But they were attacked and they leapt once more to battle. Suprised by this, the Crowan asked for aid in giving up his burden – asking that one of the adventurers promise to care for these people after he was gone, ideally someone of the faith. A discussion was had and General Garrison, a veteran of Llaminusia, took up this charge. Satisfied the Crowan could make his peace and once the port was freed he would lay down his burden and go to his Goddess.
They fought through the gathered Konnish and demons in the market square, securing and cleansing the Rolborian Shrine before smiting the demon that lay writing atop the broken table. Then on towards the bluff overlooking the port. As they approached their Scout Solstice was taunted by some of the locals, implying there were some traps awaiting them. But the adventurers rushed them and broke through the massed group on the cliffs to be faced only with the sea. It seemed they were at the end of their journey, but the taint still remained and they were at a loss as what to do.
And then up rose one long ugly tentacle that wavered for a moment before knocking one of the Knights flying. Whoever approached the cliff edge attracted a razor tipped tentacle which lashed out at them, missing them by mere inches or knocking them flying with one lethal flick. People attempted to slash at the tentacles, against Ravenna’s protests at the thought the pain would anger whatever it was further. It was then that Primate Olivia noticed the Longstorian woman sat alone, untouched by the creature, and Primate Bill went to investigate. His attempt to cleanse her attracted the attention of the creature and after he was knocked back a couple of times, the Knights attempted to draw the creature away from the Primate by providing targets and as he kept trying to undo the demonic taint upon his lost church member, the Knights kept being knocked back and flicked away until Errant Stafford grabbed hold of the tentacle with a bare hand and was dragged over the cliff edge. Ravenna watched, horrified and frozen in place with shock and it was her scream which alerted the others to their missing companion.
Stafford was eventually spat out after he stabbed the creature, grabbing a tooth as his arm was chomped off in response before the creature vomited up the irritating morsel it had ensnared. At this, with tentacles still waving wildly about, Primate Bill decided to take matters into his own hands. He asked Sir Stewart if he might borrow the Griffin Blade, and taking it in one hand he ran the ex-communicant through with the enchanted blade. The tentacles writhed and trailed back into the sea. They didn’t come back and it was hoped that, as the demonic taint vanished and the cloying mist that had throughout their journey comforted and oppressed each in their own way lifted, the creature would be gone. The creature, as one of the mages pointed out on the way back to the Thing, was a Kraken. Obviously.
Returning to the Thing it was agreed that as Colt was staying to see the port secure as promised to the Crowan, then the agreement made with Ranger Al would still stand. Most of the adventurers returned to Ithron, but Sir Marcus and Ravenna stayed behind to hold the town and marshall the reinforcements who would arrive soon, Primate Bill stayed to pursue a vision he had received by Longstor, Ash stayed to conduct guild business, Morgan stayed to lend the aid of his School and Colt stayed to keep his promise.
Another step has been taken towards bringing Llaminusia back to the light, and for now reinforcements have secured a deep water port to bring in supplies, goods, troops and to act as a base of operations in the campaign to drive back the darkness that has filled the land and bring hope once more to the people who have suffered much. But it is not the end and there is still much to do.
Monster Mission: Something amiss in the Cleve
A group of dwarves have been robbed in the Cleve, the area in the Tisa Valley that has become home to non-humans over the years, and they are not happy with it. So a pair of local foresters and their adventuring companions set off into the Cleve to get the full story and see what they could do about it.
The adventurers that set out were:
- Guild Enforcer Christo Eadronhart of the Guild of Mercenaries, Captain of the Berwickshire Medium;
- Ranger Wulfric of the Berwickshire Medium;
- Forester Kane and Junior Forester Lynch of the Foresters;
- Dr Leoric McColic, Krom Goodfellow and Serge Torstein of the Physicians Guild;
- Speid and Nikolai Grigori Sandrakken of the Guild of Blacksmiths;
- Archmage Stanley Middlebrook of the School of Enchantment; Witchfinder Barnaby and Master Mortimer Lowe of the School of Necromancy; Master Erulisse Saerwyn of the School of Thaumaturgy; Albrecht Crowe of the Guild of Mages;
- High Father Andre of Rolbor; A Traldan;
As the adventurers made their way out of the town they were asked to show their papers by the guards as another adventuring party were making their way back in, carrying a dead Sidhean Priestess with them. The Feudal and his party warned the adventurers that there was a raucous group of foulspawn out in the woods, wielding poison and other devious things. They had been ill equipped, to their shame, for they had lost their priestess. The body would be returned to her family, having already been laid to rest by their Necromancer.
Continuing on the party met a group of farmers travelling to market, hoping to sell some of their seed crop for some more coin with all the trading that was to be had at the ports. Then they came upon a group of foulspawn that had been slain and messed with – harvested for alchemical ingredients and trophies. But as they inspected the bodies a roaming band of foulspawn came upon them and attacked, thinking that this band of pink skins had slain their friends. The adventurers fought them off and continued on their way to where a group of dwarves had arranged to meet them. These dwarves were angry, and rightly so – their trade goods and their own personal armour had been taken from them and they wanted their belongings back.
They set off on the trail of the thieves, facing some foulspawn running from pumpkin headed scarecrows, and a raggedy man, and other dead foulspawn with pieces of their skin torn off. But on they went until they came to a branch of the road where a group of mercenaries stood guard. Amongst them was a “dwarf” that didn’t take kindly to being called a dwarf and was quite particular about its hammer. The foresters set about their business, reviewing permits and inquiring about their business. The mercenaries were quite adamant that they not break their contract and no one was to pass. This was not what the adventurers wanted to hear and a fight broke out. Eventually they were able to make their way past the pair of mercenaries and the Spriggun, stating that they were on law business.
Further down the path they went, beset by the Spriggun who thought they had come to help build. And what was it they were building? Something that appeared to be a passage to fae. Beset by a group of mercenaries, scouts and a number of fae the adventurers were unable to prevent the two Sprigguns from completing their task. The portal opened, the Sprigguns leapt in and vanished and the adventurers cut through the remaining fools who stood in their way to attempt to close it.
So – something odd is going on in the Cleave that will require further investigation. Something to occupy the local Foresters then …