A threat to his church member takes Tungdil south to Derwentshire to join a group of hardy adventures intent on raiding the collection of a local demon menace. Armed with his wit, charm and Tralda’s sense of humour he braves the place where the faithful are reluctant to go.
Thank you Derby for inviting us along and for running a pair of cracking missions. We had lots of fun in the sun.
Player Mission: The Blackbeard’s little problem
The dwarves of Ironedge seek brave and competent heroes to aid in resolving a difficult matter for their clan. Summoned to the nearby town the adventurers set out towards the dwarven stronghold in the hope of learning more of their ‘little’ matter.
The adventurers were:
- Ranger Luta and “Razor” of the Scouts Guild;
- Judge William Talbot of the Alchemists Guild;
- Guild Senior Karogen of the Physicians Guild;
- Logan Forgebarer of the Guild of Blacksmiths
- Witchfinder Robert Sheen of the School of Thaumaturgy; Zhang-Guo the Cathayan Elementalist;
- Lady Judith Tirel of Prudha’s Ridge, Feudal Vassal;
- Primate Connor Stone of Sidhe, High Primate of Ithron; Defender Archie and Brother Ron Hammersmith of Longstor; Father Mortis of Kharach; Brother Gias of Rolbor
Leaving the town they witnessed a fight between a pair of pitfighters – criminals whose punishment for their crimes is to fight to their deaths in the pits for the entertainment of others. Glory and fame may be theirs but death will come in time. Heading into the woods they faced a group of undead seeking something, and a number of elves who attacked the party before some Abraxian foulspawn appeared seeking a holy axe. Judge Talbot, seeing one of the elves attack a member of the party and run off, chased after the fleeing elf into the woods alone. The others hurried after him but he was gone and after trying to find him the company was forced onto Ironedge without him.
Arriving at the dwarven stronghold High Primate Connor and Lady Judith learnt of the task that was to be set before them. In the recent past, during the rise of the Red Prince and Eldenshay, some of the council of dwarves had sought allies against the Elves. But they made poor choices in whom they put their faith, and the rest of their kin were outraged at the undead and dark god followers who the council sought out. The council members were removed from power, the “allies” turned away, but relics of that time remain – specifically an axe sacred to Abraxis that the Blackbeards were eager to get rid of. The adventurers were to take the axe and take it far into the marsh, to find the deepest patch of soft ground and bury the axe so that it could not be found. The High Primate was appalled that they would suggest destroying the axe, and the idea of deliberately destroying a relic of the gods sat ill with him, but they would think of something …
Lady Judith took the axe and immediately heard whisperings fill her mind. The dwarf who had carried the axe, unburdened, gave up his spirit and died and was laid to rest as the party gathered together. Judge Talbot returned and the company set out, following the guidance of their scouts. Concerned at the idea of throwing the axe away, particularly since there were foulspawn and worse seeking the axe, the Witchfinder questioned the axe as to the most respectful way to destroy it. After receiving an answer the company considered their options. The axe would be undone if placed in a place of stillness and peace – perhaps a Vleyborian Abbey or Kharachian Graveyard? It did not seem responsible to place the Vleyborians in harms way, so the local adventurers considered their local surroundings and decided to consult with a ‘friend’ of Luta’s for help. But only after they retrieved Luta’s prayerbook that had been looted from her.
Taunted by the Abraxian foulspawn, Judith struggled to keep a hold of her temper as the axe whispered to her, and she put the wretched thing through a belt loop to try and resist the temptation to wield it in battle. But her thoughts were clouded with murderous rage, and it took much of her strength to catch herself before recklessly following a lone archer back into his companions. They were attacked by undead when they met a group of petty dwarves, and followed Luta into the swamp to find her ‘friend’. Skirting pockets of poisonous gas, they found a ‘friendly’ swamp beast that tried to catch and drown the unwary until Luta intervened. She asked the creature to help them find the Snake Lady who might be able to help them find a peaceful place in the marsh, but they were not in luck for she was far away. However, the creature was willing to help guide them to a place it knew. They encountered a group of elven supremacists seeking a Longstorian artefact and suffered through their insults before they parted company, Judith’s hand straying to the axe but not drawing it from her belt.
They travelled onwards through the marsh until they came upon a group of undead marching with purpose towards a Kharachian place that the creature had warned them was under attack. Following the undead they fought them and fought through the massed ranks until they came to the sacred pool about which an elf walked playing the flute and attempting to keep the undead at bay. The adventurers rushed to his aid, fighting against the undead as Father Mortis attempted to cleanse the pool from the taint. When he was done Father Mortis was stabbed and the company leapt upon the would be assassin and chased them down, saving the life of the elf with the flute. As they thought on how best to dispose of the axe, they questioned the pool as it its nature – “I am Death” it replied, which unnerved many in the company. Judith, her raging no longer quietened by her litany of knighthood and the presence of the priests who had kept blessing her armour, was prepared to walk into Death to remove the axe. But as the priests cleansed the pool and offered prayers to Kharach to spare the life of the one who walked into Death, Abraxians attacked. Judith, stripped of her arms and her helmet and shield with only the axe in hand, heard their clamouring for the weapon and gave into the rage – offering to give the axe back only cloven through their skulls.
Killing one she turned on another only to have the Abraxian’s blade cut through her armour and she was felled, only to be restored by the touch of the god whose battle cry was singing through her veins, his relic bloodied. Being awoken she lashed out but all was still. All that waited was the pool. Necking a potion to protect her from poison, Judith stepped into the pool and placed the axe at the centre. Released of her burden she heard a voice offer her a choice – to go forward or go back. Her children sprung to mind and she stepped back, walking out of the pool unharmed feeling content and at peace.
The company returned to report on their deeds and Judith returned to Berwickshire after her brush with Kharach with a new found awe for the God.
Monster Mission: Raiding the Demon Vault
Dr Mhari calls together heroes to help her destroy part of a liche and help recover a religious artefact bound to her from the vaults of a demon Collector. Those who travelled to help her were:
- Edgar Tallow and Anna Bower of the Scouts Guild;
- Morgan Wolfe and Swift of the Mercenaries Guild;
- Dr Mhari McRory of the Physicians Guild;
- Master Jayms Cobb of the Alchemist’s Guild;
- Mistress Holy-Lynn Icechanter and Master Bialar Crais of the School of Enchantment; Master Aleksander Mors of the School of Necromancy; Grey of the College of Battlemages;
- Errant Eurya Vanellen of the Knightly Grey Order;
- Chaplain Sam of the Griffin Order, Father Ulfarr Arnsson and Father Vau of Crowa; Defender Tungdil Stonehammer of Tralda; Novice Nova Lamb of Longstor;
Travelling to the Rose Priory in Darian the company took the phylactery in their keeping into the shrine to break it. The priory was empty except for a priest and a supplicant Rose whilst the Order went out to look into other problems. After praying at the shrine the healers and mages set to work, but underneath the ground something was moving. Tungdil, pressing his ear to the ground, could hear the sound of tunnelling and he and Swift warned the others to prepare for combat. When Chaplain Sam went down into the cellar he could see a crack forming in the wall and hear the sound of movement beyond, and lo and behold through the floor above came pouring in undead. As the phylactery was broken and the liche weakened, the company fought off the undead under the command of Father Ulfarr and Defender Tungdil and were victorious. Resting that night in the town and priory, they gathered their strength and set out the next day upon their other task.
Travelling to the ruined priory they came upon foulspawn guided by Abraxians, found a village beating one of their own caught spying on the Abraxians and the mine and their ‘great plan’, and travelled along a treacherous goat path which crumbled away at their feet and tested their mettle sorely. Arriving at the ruined monastery they found it infested with demon cultists and a Githasian priest trying to right the wrongs there. Fighting off the cultists they were able to open the hidden stair to a portal to Sharda by answering riddling statues, and stepped through into the realm of the Collector. This was just one of the vaults in the Collector’s Collection, but inside was the prize they were after.
Solving a number of puzzles under the amused gaze of the Caretaker led them to open the vault. An alchemical potion puzzle led the company a merry dance – spitting forth venomous scorpions and nearly choking on mouthfuls of nettles (poor Jayms and Swift), before Errant Eurya nearly drank the whole bottle of the required potion that was to be shared by all. Beyond the veil, the contents of the vault called to Dr Mhari – a small coin bound to her soul and other items surrounding a sleeping body. Another phylactery? As the company puzzled on how to retrieve the desired items the wall behind them closed and the room began to grow warmer and warmer. Instructing everyone to breathe shallowly, to not talk unless needed, to conserve the air in the chamber, Tungdil advised everyone to sit. Sitting on the floor, trying to stay cool, Guildmaster Matthews revealed he had a potion that would permit the survival of at least one of the company. Tungdil insisted it be Dr Mhari, and the adventurers waited with bated breath as Grey tried to dispel the wards protecting the precious treasures. At first it seemed to dim the wards, but after a second ritual the wards dropped entire. The adventurers dashed forward, grabbing what they could – Tungdil hauling the body of the phylactery over his shoulder. Before the wards returned and the wall raised they dashed out of the Vault and continued their dash through Sharda and out through the portal to see what had befallen those who had remained in the monastery.
A pile of cultists bodies lay at the feet of Chaplain Sam and Vau, who had been protecting the doorway for their companions’ return. They considered how to close the doorway, but with their task complete and danger biting at their heels, the adventurers left the ruins behind – carrying their recovered treasures with them.