The Collector seeks his prize – the tablet hidden in the valley ruled by the Vampires. Requesting aid from adventurers he sends them back into the valley with the strict instruction that the tablet belongs to him.
But the adventurers don’t want his stupid tablet. They want to get even with the vampire that has been corrupting the people of the valley. So they’re going in armed and dangerous and looking for a fight.
Typical night out for adventurers, right?
Making their way through the valley to the entrance to Darius’s domain, the third and final of the vampires, the adventurers were met by a priest of Sidhe and his devotee who were trying to convert the clueless people to follow the Seven. Listening for a time they added their own outlook on the Gods, trying to convince them that “Theseven” was not one God but seven, and that it was not evil (unlike their Gods …).
The adventurers were:
- Ranger Godman Armstrong of the Scouts;
- Nancy Ivers of the Berwickshire Medium Infantry;
- Pirran of the Guild of Mages;
- Errant Ivers of the Knightly Templar Order;
- Father Robert Eddlemann of Sidhe; Brother Trevelyan of Crowa; Sister Kate of Vleybor; Brother of Kharach
After the villagers walked off, confused and befuddled (though one seriously considering following the true Gods), the adventurers tackled a bridge where a pair of wraiths praised their Lord Darius at the beginning of his holy Way and writhed whoever insulted their “God”. The heroes managed to get past them and then had to walk “the Way” through roaming bands of undead, Godman spotting the numbered stones amongst the bushes and leading his party this way and that as they fought off the unending stream of undead monsters.
They came to a rickerty bridge and several of the company put their feet through weakened panels and fell into the icy river, and fought off more undead as they worked along a narrow path by the riverside. They then faced “the test of faith” – Pirran swearing blind that the bridge in front of them existing, but the others only seeing emptiness. Trevelyan and Gimris, initially sceptical, fell into the river and fought off zombies as they crawled shivering out of the water. They were eventually be led by the hand by their friends, who fervently believed that Pirran was right, over the invisible magic bridge and continued on.
They found a group of pilgrims waiting for Darius – some having waited for a few hours, some having waited for days, at the feet of an automata that spake the words of the vampire – that the waiting will get their just reward. Angry and seeking Darius to put a boot in his cunning plans, the adventurers did what they could for the thirsty starving people, then marched straight past the statue. More undead and another puzzle along the way led to a long fight with undead through a tunnel – with shadows reaching into the minds of some to bid them praise Darius, the God who is Death and Judge.
Our heroes battled through various of Hepuslon’s errant creations and a growing number of automata until they came down a set of steps cut into the hillside. At the bottom stood the ghost of a Sidhean Priest whom Valtr had laid to rest the last time they had been in the valley. The spirit had been sent back to warn them of a great threat, to urge the priest to protect their champion lest they fall under the wicked workings of the vampire. But Father Robert did not know what was needed and the ghost, through the fervent prayers of the whole company, was able to summon Sidhe’s might into protecting Errant Ivers so that she may face the danger and guide Father Robert on his quest for Sidhe’s greatest gift …
After battling with a beserk automata they came upon a man tinkering with a couple of broken figurines, who asked lots of questions and was evasive in his own answers. Godman struck him and the creature hissed and ran away – Darius unmasked! Following him the company fought off more automata and found a stash of treasure, before hurrying up the hill to Darius’s lair to finish him off.
But it was not as simple as that. Backed by the last remenants of Hepsulon’s creations Darius was a force to be reckoned with as he hunted through the company and fed upon their bleeding bodies and generally monologued. He was the grandson of the founder of this valley, who had made it a safe place to hide the tablet. But the mage Darius realised it was the perfect site to enact his plans and slowly but surely he fashioned his undead state and recruited two lackeys to deal with the day to day running of their little paradise. Trevelyan, Kate and Ivers were the only ones standing at one point, and as Kate and Ivers frantically patched up their companions Trevelyan gave the Vampire a piece of his mind. Disgusted the Vampire feared him away, and Gimris’s wounds that Trevelayn had been trying to hold together reopened and her life ebbed away. Grief descended upon many of the company, but when Brother was roused from his unconcious state he looked up and brought Kharach’s wrath down on the Vampire with the casting of the miracle he’d prepared. Gone, blown to ashes on the wind, the company were free to search the lair and mourn their dead friend.
Tension arose between the Kharachian attempting to do his Lord’s work and other members of the company who knew she wished to return if she was able to. This quickly spilled over into a scuffle which left Brother face down in the ground and a hurried plan of action put in place to keep Gimris out of harms way until she was back on her feet. The party split in two – one group taking Gimris and getting out of there, the second group travelling back in the company of a seething Kharachian priest. I wouldn’t be surprised if that one didn’t have a list …
Pirran was amazed at the intricate magical focus of the whole veil spell and a debate was had as to whether it would be wise to smash the skull that seemed to be at the heart of it all. Trevelyan cleansed it, but the group decided it would be wiser to wait and see what happened rather than have it explode in their faces and have another death on their concience. Unhappy Trevelyan agreed and they went back to the Collector with his precious piece of tablet – but not without making a copy first.
Nancy’s not sure why, but she and others think the Collector’s up to something – and in Berwickshire these things are usually dodgy and require an adventuring group to clean up the mess.