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Title: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on July 23, 2017, 04:11:57 PM
I've been recording the (mis)adventurers of my D&D group on a blog. No idea if it will interest anyone here or not, but I thought I'd stick it up anyway. It was supposed to be a short summary but ended up being a lot longer than was intended.

The Tale Of The Band Of The Icky Hand.

We had our first online session of D&D tonight. It started with the party wandering into a somewhat run down and poor village, but with an unusually impressive temple and an inn. To my surprise the party wanted to check out the temple first of all, and the alcohol later. If they had stuck to this plan the adventure would have been a lot shorter, but I'll explain more about that later.

The party consists of Cadmus, a human cleric of Lathander, the god of the Morning played by Kristi, Valeria a human rogue played by Tina and Zolis the Narcaleptic Wizard played by Anders. Zolis has a raven as a pet familiar which as it turns out enjoys meat that has been left hanging for a while.

Spending some time in the inn, they found the locals a very cliquey bunch, with only the barman (Sillas) being talkative. He alluded to something bad happening with the village, but didn't want to go into details, suggesting instead that they talk to the local priest, Father Morgan instead. Zolis was attempting to press him for more information, when things suddenly got dramatic (DUH DUH DUH type music).

The door to the inn slammed open and a villager staggered in and told everyone that another person had been attacked outside the village. Led by Sillas a group of villagers headed out into the rain and dark and the party followed. On the edge of the village a figure in a dark cloak stopped everyone, asked what had happened and asked Sillas to bring the party to see him afterwards. Aways outside the village they found a dead body, torn up in some savage attack amid references to hellhounds and summoned demons. A stretcher was hurridly made and the remains returned to the village accompanied by the distant howling of wolves... or perhaps something more sinister.

Returning to the village, the body was taken inside the temple, while the party was escorted to see Father Morgan in his room at the back of the temple. Sillas was dismissed and sent back to the inn while Morgan told the group of an evil that had been plaguing the village and was the reason for its current state of decline by scaring off all the merchants who used to pass through it. The village had for decades suffered under the shadow of this warlock, until a child went missing. Father Morgan had gathered up the village (except for Sillas who was out of town collecting supplies) and stormed the warlocks lair before killing him. They hadn't taken any of the treasures the warlock no doubt had stored, fearing it was cursed, but the old man's spirit had sought vengeance regardless, in the form of a pack of hellhounds that had been attacking the village ever since.

The party rested over night, although I guess Zolin didn't get as much rest as everyone else (again, more about this later). In the morning Sillas had prepared a breakfast for the group before they headed out. The group talked about heading to the temple to investigate the cellars beneath it (which really, really would have cut the adventure short) on hearing the current temple was built on the ruins of at least two older temples (one to Torm, which fell into disrepair and one to Mystral destroyed when that got died) then rebuilt when the village was much wealthier and dedicated to no particular deity but available for anyone to worship at, However in order to make it to the farm and back during daylight hours the party decided to skip the temple and head to the warlocks lair, an old farm some 4 to 6 hours walk away. Father Morgan (who the party did not quite trust) came to see them off and give them his blessing.

The rains that had been falling for the past six weeks finally let up allowing the party to enjoy the day as much as is possible. Val spotted something shining at the roadside and guessed it was something gold. Turns out she was right. It was a ring. The ring was attached to a hand. The hand however wasn't attached to anything else and had been lying for several days. Cadmus retrieved the ring, getting slightly icky in the process (first bad smell picked up, several days dead person). Examining the ground nearby the only other thing anyone found was lots of dog leavings. No one decided to search through that fortunately, or that would have been bad smell number two. Anyway, Cadmus retrieved the wedding ring and found an inscription on the inside. She kept it to hopefully return to the husband and gave the hand a roadside burial.

A little while later, with only a few seconds warning a pair of dogs leapt out of the undergrowth and attacked the party. Zolin figured it was only two dogs and him helping would give the party an unfair advantage. He attempted to make some hot dogs via burning hands and then figured that was cheating so after having a couple of chunks ripped out of his legs decided he would sit this one out and go for a sleep instead. Left to their own devices Val and Cadmus killed the animals and with some magical healing managed to wake up Zolin before he bled to death. Well when I say Val and Cadmus killed the dogs Val mostly killed them (one with a fairly spectacular shot that went right down the dogs throat and out the out end while Cadmus swung her mace dangerously close to Zolin's head. Possibly to make sure he was really sleeping.

Examing the bodies, the dogs showed no particular signs of being demonic, unless you count demons normally look malnurished. The party started putting two and two together at this point. Val decided to pull her used crossbow bolts out of the corpses and reuse them (bad smell number 2).

Continuing on they could see a farm in the distance, where Anton the Warlock had lived. A drystone wall surrounded the farm, with the gate having been knocked down when the mob stormed it. Zolin sent his raven into fly around the farm and report anything interesting. It came back to tell him that there were two buildings and a human hanging from a tree. The bird was sent back in to get more details on the man. It was gone a suspiciously long time, but eventually returned bringing its master back a present of an eyeball, having saved the tastiest morsal for him and dropped it in his hand. Zolin decided to let the bird eat the eyeball itself, but forgot to put it on the ground first so his hand got a bit messy when that burst (bad smell number 3). A familiar may be an intelligent animal but it is still an animal.

Eventually the party decided to enter the farm and check the body themselves. Obviously it had been hanging there a while. If this was indeed Anton the Warlock, apparently he died disguised as a farmer. Thinking that leaving the body hanging was disrespectful, they cut it down. Made a bit of a mess and splashed a bit when it hit the ground though. Enter bad smell number four.

Next the party decided to investigate the whitewashed farmhouse. The door had been kicked in and the room inside (a kitchen) bore signs of a struggle and the remains of a book which had been used to try and start a fire. Two doors led from the kitchen. The first one went into a well furnished bedroom with an ornately carved wooden chest. On one wall was painted the holy symbol of Lathander, the very god that by sheer coincidence Cadmus follows (I'd actually thought Kristi had went with Torm when I wrote this part of the adventure) Val demonstrated her skill with a lock pick and quickly had it open. Although the chest was quite sizable (about a meter wide and half that deep) all it had in it was a carved wooden mask. While the ladies decided not to touch it with a barge pole Zolin decided to cast detect magic on it. He let out a scream and passed out. The women continued talking about how to handle the mask until they noticed him passed out beside them and decided to pour some cold water on him to wake him up.

On waking up, Zolin decided to stop messing around and before anyone could stop him, grabbed the mask and put it on. And promptly passed out as waves of magical energy overwhelmed his senses. Cadmus and Val watched as the mask sunk into his skin and vanished. They searched the room but found no other treasure unless you count the robe Cadmus decided to help herself to.

Shruggling their shoulders the women grabbed a foot each and dragging Zolin's limp body to the next room, which turned out to be an indoor outhouse. They decided not to search this, thus avoiding bad smell number five, at least for the moment.

Dragging Zolin again it was decided to check out the barn. As they approached they could see although the doors were shut a hole just about the right size for a dog to get through had been chewed out of the door. Val snuck in, unnoticed by even the dogs keen senses and spotted four fully grown dogs of a similar type to the ones they'd fought earlier, although with four pups. None of them looked especially demonic either. She slipped outside to share this information with Cadmus, and then just as silently went back inside to see if she could spot the missing girl. Alas there was no sign unless she was hiding inside the kennel, or the muscular and rather hairy arm one of the dogs was chewing on belonged to her, so Val moving like a shadow went back outside to talk to Cadmus again.

About this time Zolin struggled back to the waking world and started to ask what was happening. The women berated him a little bit for putting on the mask and then all debated on how to deal with the dogs inside. I had expected the group to do what adventuring parties normally do and burn the thing to the ground (unless its a sci fi game, in which case you take off and nuke the site from orbit. Its the only way to be sure after all. Or its a Call of Cthulhu game. In which case you've all went mad already, and you only get to burn things down if you happen to develop pyromania), but instead the loud debating let the hungry animals inside know that there was food outside. The dogs could only squeeze out of the hole one at a time, which was lucky for the party and prevented them being overwhelmed.

The first dog out leapt at the closest target, which happened to be.... Zolin. Going somewhat literally for the jugular Zolin apparently decided since he was able to sit out the last fight, he'd be fine to sit out this one too. Cadmus swung her heavy mace and almost managed to take Zolin's head off. Seriously, if she was using a bladed weapon Zolin would never need to shave again. She did however manage to get some healing to the prone Zolin who awoke to find two dogs fighting the rest of the party while standing over his body. He immediently pulled his dagger out and went for the soft unbellys of the dogs. And missed. Then he missed some more. When he did manage to get a hit in, it was fairly spectacular, gutting one of the dogs from throat to belly. He also found out there is one slight drawback to cutting an animal open while standing beneath it. Bad smell number five may have been delayed but you knew it was coming.

After the rest of the ravenous dogs had been disposed of the group limped low on health and healing into the barn. Despite a full search they could find no sign of the girl. They did decide to take the puppies though.

Deciding on one last search before returning to the village (can you guess which room they decided to search?). Lets just say Cadmus got bad smell number seven all the way up to her elbow and leave it at that. They also went and searched the bedroom again. Looking in the wardrope Cadmus failed to find any treasure hidden beneath the bag of gold she lifted up.

The party washed themselves off as best they could using a bucket of water from the well, but lets face it, you need a lot more than just water to get rid of those smells.

Stumbling and feeling half dead the party took the long walk all the way back to the village. They had decided that Anton had been killed by a lynch mob rather than the fight that Father Morgan had told them about and had a few questions they wanted to ask him. Anton certainly did not appear to be the fearsome evil spellcaster he had been made out to be. The only possible things that might make him a bad guy would be the strange mask or if he had kidnapped the girl.

Still mostly dead and with little or no spells remaining the party marched immiediently to the temple to confront Father Morgan. Interupting his service the party demanded answers, but happened to mention they'd brought the puppies back. At this Father Morgan changed from being caught on the back foot, to going into a rage and demanding the spawn of the devil dogs be destroyed right then and there. When the party refused he unleashed a spray of fire at them. Zolin bravely decided to shield the puppies by throwing himself in the way of the fire and taking plenty of damage in the process. Having contributed to the fight, he decided once again to sleep for the rest of the fight. Casting another spell, Morgan attempted to use it to weaken Val, but he was so enraged he was unable to land a blow on her before the spell disapated. Meanwhile Kristi swung her heavy mace at the back of his head. A critical miss saw her mace fly out of her hands, smash through the church window and into Sillas's tavern next door, which did at least bring him running (unknown to the party). The next turn she pulled out her light crossbow, pulled the trigger and heard a couple of noises with sounds like TWANG! and SPITANG as the springs on her crossbow burst out of the draw mechanism (yup, second critical miss in a row. Garry, you might not be playing with us, but I feel you are here in spirit).

Father Morgan then played his last trump card. Spewing out more magic words in a frenzy, he attempted to put everyone in the church to sleep. Zolin had a head start here, but Val collapsed and decided to join him. Out of spells Morgan now turned around, drew his dagger and went to finish off the last person still standing. Cadmus. Out of weapons she quickly grabbed Zolin's light crossbow. It was of a somewhat unfamiliar design though and her first shot went wide, as did her second, all the while stepping back to avoid the wild dagger slashes from the maniacal priest.

Boy, this post is going on longer than I thought. Oooh, does this count as a tension break?

Eventually a lucky strike from Morgan sunk into Cadmus's torso and she too decided a sleep would be nice on the floor. Just as she passed out, Sillas ran in and seeing the priest about to deliver the coup de grace, clubbed him on the back of the head knocking him just as unconscious as everyone else.

When the party awoke, they were alive (which is handy for them and me as this isn't supposed to be an undead campaign), but tied up. Everyone was back in the inn, and across the other side of the room was Father Morgan, also tied up, but also gagged and struggling violently to escape.

Sillas demanded to know why the party had marched in and attacked the most respected man in the village. When they tried to tell their story, Sillas demaded proof that Father Morgan had done anything wrong. The party suggested they check the cellars beneath the temple at which Morgan's struggles became even more violent. Sillas removed the temple keys from him and took the party (hands still tied up) along with a small escort to the temple. They unlocked the trap door and went down into the darkness. In the second room they found the missing girl, who told them Morgan had kidnapped her and told her that he was going to blame Anton for her disappearence. Sillas released the young girl and took her back to her family, while the party explored the cellers finding many exciting papers, records of taxes paid, births, deaths and marriages and so on, but despite their best efforts they could find no magical items in the house.

Returning to the inn the party decided they really, really needed to sleep. Sillas gave them rooms for free and said he'd speak to them in the morning. Until then, Father Morgan would be left tied up and for good measure locked in the fruit cellar until they could decide what to do with him.

In the morning the four had a conferance. The party wanted Sillas to take the reins of leadership for the village. He'd shown himself to be a take charge kind of guy a couple of times now, but he told them he wasn't sure he wanted to stay in a village where people had been so willing to lynch an innocent man. He was no judge to give Morgan a trial and no executioner to carry out a sentance. They have no jail in the village to imprison him and no lord was interested in claiming overship over such a small and unprofitable village. Eventually it was agreed to transport him to the nearest city (four days walk away). Sillas even agreed to drive them there in his wagon making the trip much faster.

And with that, the first session came to a close. Oh, and the grateful villagers had done their best to wash the groups clothes while they slept


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on July 23, 2017, 04:13:47 PM
Part Two Of The Tale Of The Band Of The Icky Hand.

The second session started off in the morning with the party waking up, still bearing many of the wounds from their previous adventure. Sillas suggested if they wanted to deliver their prisoner alive they should leave before anyone else in the village awoke. Dragging him out of the cellar, they loaded him onto Sillas's cart and then once Sillas had collected some pieces of paper they headed off for the bright lights of the nearest city. Sillas had never been more than half a days journey away from the village and was excited to be travelling a whole two days from the place he was born.

The road eastward out of the village was considerably rougher than the one they entered in, but the party bounced about on the cart, with Val (Tina) doing her best to count the bag of coins they had found in the dead hermits house. When the group stopped for lunch, the ungagged their prisoner to give him some water. On hearing some giggling from the woods, Val & Cadmus (Kristi) went to investigate, while Zolis (Anders) and Sillas stayed with the wagon. Unable to see where the laughing was coming from Val turned round to head back to the cart and was promptly hit in the back of the head by an acorn and more laughter. Looking around she couldn't couldn't find her assilant. On seeing the commotion, Zolis and Sallis decided to come over and investigate, while Val and Cadmus decided to return to the wagon to re-gag Father Morgan. Unluckily for the team Morgan had just enough time to memorize one spell before they got there. This would have consequences later.

Zolis now found himself the target of a hail of acorns. He responded by picking one up and throwing it back, but on rolling a natural 20 scored a direct, critical hit on one of the fairys tormenting the group and instantly made himself a target for their tricks. He went to walk away only to find his shoe laces were tied together. When he sat down with his back against a tree to untie them, the farie dumped a load of rain water right down his back. By now the other two had got back from the wagon and a short debate on wither or not to investigate the forest ended with the party deciding to beat a hasty retreat, leaving the fae as the victors of the Battle Of Muddy Road East.

Of course the fae's revenge was not quite over yet.

As evening faded into dusk, the party decided to make camp. Val volunteered for first watch while a meal was prepared. Zolis was violently sick after discovering the drink in his water skin had been transformed into horse urine. All his rations were now decayed and moldy. Luckily Cadmus's magic was able to save enough of his food to provide a rudimentry meal.

Of course the fae's revenge on Zolis still isn't quite over yet, but more of that in a future session...

Everyone settled down for a sleep, but Morgan was wriggling about in the cart trying to catch Val's attention. She ungaged him only for him to to demand food and water which she provided, feeding him and leaving his hands and feet tied (clever girl). Once he had finished however he declared he needed the toilet. Val untied his feet, he climbed down off the cart and walked to a tree, but with his hands still bound demanded she either untied his hands or she'd have to come over and hold it for him. Deciding that was above and beyond the call of duty she tied a rope around his neck and untied his hands (again clever, but...). This allowed Father Morgan to cast the one spell he was able to memorize earlier, Sleep. Val succumed to its effects and collapsed. However, even if this hadn't happened, Morgan did have a second escape plan where his pet familiar (that the party never knew about), a rat would have chewed through his ropes and allowed him to escape. It would have been pretty difficult for the party to deliver him to the city, but not impossible.

The next day, the weather wasn't quite as warm but was still a nice day as the party woke up to find Val passed out in the middle of the camp ground and all their food and water gone. Having no tracking skills the group decided it had no choice but continue on to Asbravn in the hopes of finding more out about the mysterious mask that had melded to Zolis's face.

They'd been travelling for a couple of hours when up ahead they came across a large group of men menacing a lone traveller. The party immediently jumped off the cart and Val snuck up behind the bandits, only to stand on a twig at the last second and alert the group to their presence. Immediently a wild melee broke out. Zolis had a short sword plunged into his gut and decided to sleep through the rest of the fight. Val decided to join him, but fell headfirst onto Zolis headbutting him between the legs. The traveller meanwhile was fighting three of the bandits at once, and although seriously wounded and near death by the end, managed to dispose of them while his pet dog (or possibly wolf) took out another bandit. The party managed to work its way through the rest until a lone crossbowman ontop of a nearby rise was left as the sole opponent. The two groups combined managed to take him down. The traveller introduced himself as Kano and thanked the party, and answered their questions although his answers were very short and offered no additional information. They got that he was a hunter heading east, before he mounted his steed and rode off along the road to Karlsberg. Meanwhile the party looted the bodies, loading rusty weapons and bloodied armour onto the cart. Checking the bandit's camp they found a warrior tied up. Freeing him he introduced himself as a fighter called Zagan who had been ambused by the bandits and tied up while they decided if they could ransom him or not. He offered to join the party.as thanks for rescuing him and they once again continued once Cadmus had healed up a few wounds.

Finally the city hove into view. The party started to pass many farmers and merchants on the way to town. They stopped a patrol of Red Cloaks (local militia) and told them about the bandits and the escaped prisoner and were asked to make a report to the watch house once they got to the city.

Something Sillas said to the group made them ask him about his intentions once they got to the city. He told them he had brought the deeds for his inn and was planning on selling it and learning how to use a sword before taking up the life of an adventurer.

Eventually the group reached the city gates and were a little surprised to be assessed for taxes (if they think this was bad, wait until they return from a dungeon laden down with gold and gems. Governments take a dim view of people causing havoc with the economy like that and like to tax it very heavily in my world). The arms and armour they were carrying in the cart got them assessed as arms dealers which I think came as quite some shock to the party.

When they finally got inside the party headed off to the nearest inn where Zolis proceeded to get really, really drunk while attempting to translate the partially burned book they found earlier. The rest of the group spend the afternoon making a report to the watch house, who took all the details and then filed everything in the bin. By the time they finished there, most places were closing so they headed back to the inn to find out what Zolis had discoverd. Unfortunately a very drunk Zolis wasn't terribly coherant and the group would have to wait for the next day to get any information from him at the earliest. They did however overhear rumours of problems with Goblins to the north and made a note of this to possibly investigate it in the future.

The next day started with a trip to the market carrying the weapons and armour looted off the bandits. The leatherworker they approached complained about the battle damage and blood stains on the leather, and offered them a low price, expecting them to haggle. When the party accepted the offer he quickly agreed with a smile. They got a better deal from an armourer where they managed to offload the weapons and shields they'd obtained, but still the lack of haggling left them poorer than they might have been otherwise.

Next followed a trip to the local temple to Lathander. The ranking priestess listened to their concerns and (after someone ran back to the inn to retrieve the book and Zolis) read through the burned book. Concerned by what she had learned she offered to let the party study the temple archives to see if they could find out anything about these masks. Or if the party would help clear the area around a monestary to the north of a Goblin problem she would have her acolytes do the research for the party. Since the party had been planning on heading that way anyway they readily agreed and signed on as caravan guards with a merchant heading that way the next day, on the one condition (after looking at Zolis), that the party turned up with clear and sober heads.

Everyone behaved themselves that night and were ready bright and early the next day for the next stage of their adventure.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on July 24, 2017, 08:16:21 AM
I enjoyed reading that, Alex. You made it seem like a short story rather than a synopsis. Nicely done!


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on July 25, 2017, 04:30:06 PM
Part Three Of The Tale Of The Band Of The Icky Hand.

Our third session begain where the last one ended (oddly enough). Cadmus, Zolis and Val had earned enough experience to go up a level. Zagan however was lagging a bit behind. Anyway, on with the adventure!

The party met up with their new employer, a merchant by the name of Belash who had a habit of saying "hey" in every sentence and had an endless fund of stories of old adventures and misadventures in the mercantile world. Around lunch time he noticed that the weather looked like it was going to take a turn for the worse with a storm rolling in. Not long after that, an eagle eyed Cadmus (Kristi) spotted a lone figure observing them from a distance. Belash checked him out with his telescope (which is an unknown item to the party and indeed most of the rest of the world). Although the light was starting to fail, he could see it was a Goblin watching them.

Expecting an attack at any time, Belash ordered the caravan to make all best speed to the rest house in the hope of spending a safe and secure night. As the group were travelling through a narrow pass a small force of Goblins ambushed them. Although they were quickly disposed of, two more Goblins were watching the attack from the top of a nearby cliff and assessing the abilities of the group. Deeming them no more of a threat than any other caravan (i.e. no flashy fireball spells etc). the caravan was allowed to proceed into the main trap. DUH DUH DUH (que dramatic music). Zagan (Soren) did attempt to climb up the cliff to attack them, but the wet mud defied his climbing ability. Oh, and Zolis (Anders) managed to fall unconscious. Seriously, that guy should just walk around with a mattress strapped to his back for when he passes out.

Continuing on, the group could see their destination whenever the sky was lit up by lightning. It was less than half a mile to go. Val (Tina), glanced over her shoulder only to see a pack of Goblins mounted on Wargs coming up behind them. The animals started to panic and everyone tried to push at top speed for the safety promised by the walled Monestary. Goblins hidden at the side of the road fired arrows at the group (and accidently killed one of the mules), but the harried group made it to the imagined safety ahead and the doors were slammed behind them.

Exactly as the Goblin leaders had planned.

Once inside, they discovered Goblins had been herding caravans to the monestary for several days now and they were running low on supplies. Belash generously offered to sell some of his cargo of food at just a snip over cost to the other merchants in the compound. If the Goblin plan to was to starve them into submission, they had just given the defenders about a months worth of food.

Inside around 60 people were scattered around, with almost 2/3rds of them being guards or priests and the rest being unarmed civilians. The guards were manning the narrow window slots with bows and crossbows, although ammunition for them was perilously low. The group made themselves familiar with their temporary new home, but after a while an alarm bell was rung, and the shout went out that the Goblins were coming over the wall!

Looking out from one of the two towers, Val and Zolis could see that only a small part of the thousands strong horde that surrounded them was attacking. One of the defenders took an arrow in the eye and Zagan picked up the fallen mans crossbow to continue firing. The defenders laid down all the firepower they could and eventually broke the attack (each attack wave lasted a random number of turns), but the guards were left with only 2 or 3 shots each to fight off the next wave.

A second attack followed soon after, which left only the party with any ranged weapons. The rest of the combatents took up positions around the enterence to the main building and prepared to defend it with their lifes. Val and Zolis stayed up in a tower to sound the alarm and pepper the attacks with their crossbows. Unfortunately no one had carried out any maintenance on their crossbows and doubtless rusting from being out in the bad weather (i.e. they kept rolling critical fumbles) they found their weapons kept breaking. Especially Val's.

When the third wave came it was with a battering ram. Val and Zolis had climbed down a rope to collect a few precious arrows and bolts and had to quickly flee back up it when the attack came. It crashed through the outer gates, and made short work of the inner doors. Standing behind a barricade made of benches and whatever else could be found the defenders bravely stood their ground. Zagan stood in the middle of the doorway, his great sword hewing Goblins in twain all around him. The guards around him were pushed back a bit, but he stood like a rock with the tide swirling around him. Everyone was aided by Cadmus casting spells to help their morale. On the towers, Val and Zolis saw a group of pony sized giant spiders with Goblins riding on the back. Once deadly accurate crossbow fire had killed two of the riders the others decided to creep back behind the cover of the wall (although the party didn't know it they had just killed a couple of tribal leaders which would lead to the Goblins fighting each other later and cut down the number of waves of attackers they would have to face. The Goblins failed to break the line of defenders and ultimately had to retreat again.

Clerics moved through the defenders healing up wounds. Only a few minor injuries had been sustained, but the supply of healing was limited and the night was just beginning.

The next attack was a little different. The Goblin horde started chanting a name, Kazak. A seven foot tall mound of fur and muscle (a Bugbear), stepped up into the courtyard and roared a defiant challange to the defenders. Zagan accepted and a single combat begain.

Raising his greatsword high, he charged in and with a mighty swing almost cut Kazan's shield arm off. Left almost dead it looked like the champiin of the Goblin horde would be dead in seconds. His return strike was feeble and easily dodged. Overconfidence however was almost Zagan's downfall as he swung wildly and missed, not only did he miss but he lost his grip on his weapon and it sailed through the air. In return Kazak's morning star crashed into Zagan's chest leaving him as nearly dead as his opponent. Staggering to the side Zagan managed to pick up his weapon and dodge an attack that would have left him dead had it connected, Kazak's powerful swing had however left him open for a counter strike and this time Zagan did not miss, cutting the head off the Bugbear with the last of his strength. A howl of dispair came up from the Goblin host and a couple of cleric's helped Zagan back inside and healed him up. The defenders were heartened however by their champions victory and would fight the next wave with renewed vigour. Having been fighting for several hours though the party was feeling less energised, some suffering from fatigue.

More attacks followed, each one closer than the others to breaking the defenders and each time their was less and less healing to return people to fighting fitness available. Sheer exhaustian overtook fatigue leaving some barely able to walk. Zagan managed to get his greatsword stuck in the barricade and was forced back, unable to retrieve his weapon. He managed to pick a weapon up off a fallen defender but was much less effective with it. Having ran out of spells Cadmus went to the other tower to use his crossbow on the thronging horde below just as Val and Zolis ran out of ammunition. Realising the situation was dire and they might not last long, Zolis summoned his pet familiar the raven, wrote a message on a scrap of paper before tying it to its leg and sending the bird back to Asbravn to seek aid.

Out of ammunition, spells and healing it was now just a question of would the Goblins break before they overrun the defenders. With their numbers thinning out and unable to hold a stable line, Goblins started to break through the line. Civilians too slow to flee were cut down, but it was only a trickle of Goblins breaking through and they never managed to turn it into a flood. Near death, Zagan limped off to find Cadmus for any precious healing he might have available and to make a last stand in the tower, however at that point the Goblins morale finally broke. They turned and fled. Exhausted and unable to stay awake any longer (the group all failed fortitude checks), they fell into a fitful sleep.

They were awoken by excited shouts and screams. Groggily staggering to their feet and aware they could not survive another attack, they prepared to die, only to find out the Goblins had disappeared with the rising of the sun. Going out to investigate they could see piles of dead Goblins not only inside the walls, but outside too. Whatever force had bound them together had been unable to keep them together after the last attack and they had fell to fighting each other. A trail of bodies marked out where a fighting retreat had taken place.

It had been a long exhausting night, but the party had survived to face another day.

Overall, this was a less satisfying adventure to run that the other two, but the group had asked me to run an adventure on Tuesday night after Sunday's so I had limited time to prepare it. They did feel at times that the Goblin horde was going to overrun them, which is good, but overall the fight had went on a bit longer (75% of the session was them fighting off waves of Goblin attackers), but I didn't have quite as much time as I am used to to properly sort everything out. Next game is a week on Thursday and I just need to know if the party is going to continue to the north with their employer or decide to pursue the broken Goblins into the woods and try to take out the leaders or do something else entirely different.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 29, 2017, 04:49:40 PM
I enjoyed reading that, Alex. You made it seem like a short story rather than a synopsis. Nicely done!

May I also add my congratulations, and may you continue to post the adventures of your adventurers here at his website.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on July 30, 2017, 03:05:27 AM
Glad people are enjoying it. I'd be tempted to ask if anyone here wanted to join in playing, but I suspect the time difference for most people would mean it wouldn't work. Currently sitting debating on the nature of the big bad, or even if there will be a big bad at all.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: clockworkcanary on August 03, 2017, 07:07:35 AM
Love it! I've read part 1 so far (about to read the rest). Loved the two consecutive crit misses lol! Sounds exactly like one of my 2nd ed characters.

re: beginning of part 2: "the Battle Of Muddy Road East"

Bwhahahaha! Great stuff!

If you do consider additional players, please let me (us all) know.

Questions about potential players:

What software do you use to play online? Skype for voice? Rolld20 for the game/sheets?
What version of the game are you playing?
What is the player starting level? Class/race restrictions, etc.
What days do you normally schedule and what time zone/what times do you normally play?

I've been interested in finding an online D&D game to play, if schedules and time frames would work out. I have a few character concepts in mind (depending on which version of the game it is) that could work with this party make-up.

Let me know if this is a possibility. If only partial schedules can synch up, I wouldn't mind drifting in and out of the story (role playing explanation: she's got personal wizard business lol).


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 03, 2017, 02:47:29 PM
We play 3 / 3/.5 edition, as its the one I have the most books for. Its set in the Forgotten Realms. I do a little bit of house rules, just to avoid meta gaming too much. We play using the Roll d20 site and a program called Discord for voice comms. Normally we play Sunday nights from 17:00PM to around 21:30PM(ish) all GMT since the players are either based in the UK or Denmark. I do have room for a couple more players so I'd be happy to let you join in if you want. At the moment, you would start at 2nd level. Anything from the Players Handbook is acceptable, if you want something else though just run it past me first. I am generally pretty flexable on these things and I do have a mechanism that allows people who can't play every session to join in (you have a curse on you that causes you to fade in and out of existance).

Requests to play an epic level dragon are unlikely to get a yes though. Mindflayers are my favourite villains though, and I may look on them more favouribly. :P

At the moment we have a front rank fighter with a two handed weapon obsession, a narcaleptic wizard who wants to become an archmage, a cleric who wants to become a Divine Arcanist and a Rogue who wants to become a Shadowdancer with various good alignments (which I don't understand as all my own characters tend to have a Neutral Morally Flexible alignment).

If you do decide to join in, just register on the Roll d20 site if you haven't already and send me your email address so I can invite you to the game. If our times don't work out with your there are a lot of other D&D group looking for players on the Roll D20 site (mostly playing 5th edition). If you need any of the books, my friends do have a website where apparently you can download pretty much any D&D book, although I prefer having the paper versions myself.

There isn't a game this weekend as my half brother and sister are visiting, but we should be playing next on Sunday 13th.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Flangepart on August 03, 2017, 03:15:57 PM
Ah, reminds me of the kinda stories I found in 'Knights of the Dinner Table.'...without the rank absurdity. I miss that absurdity...


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: clockworkcanary on August 05, 2017, 03:45:42 PM
I messaged ya about playing :)


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 08, 2017, 07:51:39 AM
Looks like we have a 5th party member who will be joining on Sunday. Anyone who can guess who his in game character is before than can have some free Karma.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 08, 2017, 04:38:52 PM
Aside

An armoured man wandered around the city, wondering where his friends were now and how he could find them. For three days he'd been asking questions all over the city and found no trace of them. In a city where merchants, farmers and bravos came and went every day no one paid attention to another small group of them.

As he walked down the roughly cobbled street, past a shadowed alleyway someone tapped him on the shoulder. He spun around to see a familiar figure. Of average height, but broad shouldered with a wide brimmed hat keeping his face in shadow and a travel stained cloak that had seen many repairs wrapped around him. In a deep voice the figure said

“I have heard you’ve been asking around for some people I am also looking for. If you find them, tell them Kano wants to make a trade. I will find them sooner or later.”

With that he stepped back into the shadows and disappeared from sight.

Before the man could do anything a raven with a piece of paper tied to its leg landed on his shoulder. He untied the message, it read “We are at the Monastery to Lathander half way between Asbravn and Hluthvar, besieged by an army of Goblins. Please send help immediently! - Zolis”

Well at least he knew now where his friends were. If only he could get to them in time!


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: AoTFan on August 08, 2017, 08:01:22 PM
The party consists of Cadmus, a human cleric of Lathander, the god of the Morning played by Kristi, Valeria a human rogue played by Tina and Zolis the Narcaleptic Wizard played by Anders.

You have a D&D group with TWO females?  That's like two females more than most D&D groups I've been to have!

;)


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Chainsaw midget on August 08, 2017, 09:56:16 PM
Quote
Anyone who can guess who his in game character is before than can have some free Karma.
A multi-class Bard/Barbarian Orc with a high charisma who's spent his skill points on  Specialized Weapons Proficiency: cat-tied-to-a-stick. 

Pretty sure it's that. 


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 14, 2017, 02:05:36 PM
Part Four of the tale of The Band Of The Icky Hand

Tonights adventure begain with the party staring out over a sea of dead Goblin bodies. Evidently the horde had fallen to infighting when the attacks were unsuccessful and not realising how close they were to breaking the defenders.

The party assisted with piling up the dead Goblins to be burned and collected up ammunition from the dead to restock their supplies, when Zolis got a message from his familiar. He was returning and bringing help. About half an hour later they saw a figure riding up to the Monastery with the raven on his shoulder. He looked strangely familiar. Sillas (now being played by Dave, a guy from Badmovies.org), having sold his father’s inn (with his permission) had invested in a suit of armour and some weapons then came looking for his friends. Asking if he could join them as a fellow adventurer he was welcomed back.

The group filled Sillas in on what had happened since they had parted, He then went out to look at the Goblin bodies and see if he could find out what direction the survivors fled in. All around him the defenders were piling up bodies and finishing off wounded Goblins (I was a little surprised that they didn't interrogate any of the Goblins).

While he was doing that, the rest of the group were approached by the First Dawnbringer. He thanked them profusely and gave them a bad full of items he hoped would be useful to the group. Some of them were magical, but he couldn't tell them what they did. The bag contained a pair of very expensive looking daggers with silver hilts, a thick leather belt embossed with dwarvish runes, 3 potions of Cure Light Wounds, Ring, Gem, Clear Marble, 1 Thunderstone and 5 Shriek Rocks. The group asked if they could have a letter from the Dawnbringer confirming that they had helped defeat the Goblins, something he was only too glad to provide. Not only that but the letter could be shown at any temple to Lathander and it requested that the local priesthood provide any assistance they could to the bearer. Before anyone could stop him Zolis dived in the bag grabbed the ring and put it on. Val pulled the bag away from him before he could experiment any further.

The rest of the day was spent piling up more bodies while the slain defenders were given a more proper funeral.

The next day the party sent off, following the direction the Goblins had came from. Although Sillas had training as a tracker a blind man could have followed the trail the Goblins had left. A trail of bodies marked where at least one tribe of Goblins had conducted a fighting retreat. The woods grew more silent and the trees more twisted the deeper the party went into the woods.

Eventually the party came to a sudden halt. The trees ended around the edge of a wide bowl shaped depression. Although no trees grew within the pit there was a vast forest of Goblin tents. The stink coming from it was overpowering, but there was no sign of anything living other than a swarm of insects. Working their way down the muddy edge into the pit the group started to explore. Dead bodies of various races littered the area. Picking their way through the mess, the party found a cave. As the party discussed the best way to enter unnoticed, Zolis wandered off and walked inside. A guard Goblin screached and ran off raising the alarm as the wizard entered. The rest of the group ran in and tried to kill the Goblin but he escaped into the darkness. Various noises echoed through the caves, but the party were unable to tell where they were coming from.

Zolis cast light on a crossbow bolt to provide some illumination and they ventured into the darkness. The floor slopped down steeply. As they moved in they could sort out the noises. From one direction they could hear chanting, while from another yelling. The group moved towards the yelling and in the dark stumbled onto a barricade manned by Goblins. Charging into battle Sillas found himself up against the biggest of the Goblins. A powerful blow that would have felled any normal Goblin merely seemed to get him very angry and he set about Sillas with his battleaxe.

Cadmus made a stand beside Sillas while Val ran off into the dark swiping wildly trying to hit a Goblin in the hope one was out there, but didn't find anything until Zolis moved in closer and the light revealed another couple of the green skinned creatures.

She was surprised though when a Goblin ran up beside her and started fighting the other Goblins. She repaid him by sinking her dagger into his back. He turned around and in broken common said "No, no fight kill others".

With their strange ally the group managed to take down the Goblins. In fact Zolis was finding it so easy, he decided to fire his crossbow at a giant spider on a web some distance behind the barricade. Convinced that spiders hated light, Zolis fired the bolt with the light spell on it straight at the spider. It sunk deep into one of its eyes. In return the spider leapt from its web, sunk its fangs deep into Zolis's chest and pumped him full of venom. Feeling that his work here was done Zolis decided to sleep for the rest of the fight. It helped that since the parties only light source was now buried deep in the head of a spider that it went all dark. Luckily Cadmus had a Light spell available Cadmus cast a healing spell to wake him back up, then splatted the spiders head open with a mighty blow from her mace, which since she'd spent the rest of the fight missing anything she swung it at. The last of the Goblins were finished off, and the last survivor, the one who had been helping them pointed to his chest and said “Gromag… no fight no kill. Help Gromag find Tarash and you can take Goblin treasure.” The party hastily agreed and Sillas helped himself to the battleaxe the Goblin had been using against him as a trophy.

The party examined the "treasure" heap the Goblins had amassed which consisted mostly of food that had went off, rich silks that had mouldered in the damp cave, a 20 foot tall painting that Goblins had… improved. They did find a chest filled with silver coins, one that was too heavy for anyone to lift, although the whole team working together could lift it with some difficulty. Sorting through the assorted boxes, crates and wagons looted off the merchants they had raided the group found a serviceable wagon. Increasingly though Gromag was getting more and more agitated “Help find Tarash now, treasure later.” Following the sound of the chanting the group found another group of Goblins led by some sort of female Goblin spell caster. Gromag ran up and embraced her, then turned round and told the party “Tarash found, go now take treasure.” Finding things somewhat easier than expected the party went back to the treasure room. Had they went a little bit further into Tarash’s room they would have seen an altar to the Goblins dark god with a pile of sacrificed human bodies lying behind it, but returning for the treasure they managed to drag a wagon to the cave mouth. Getting it out the cave proved a bit of a challenge but with some ropes and Sillas’s horse they managed to get it up the slope and out of the cave. The next challenge was getting the wagon up the very muddy edge of the depression. A few hours of pulling crates to pieces and making a wooden track for the wagon to go up solved this issue. By this time it was starting to get dark. The party moved into the woods far enough to get away from the smell of the Goblin encampment.

Unfortunately they had left the leaders (Gromag and Tarash) of the Goblin horde alive. While they had extracted a promise from them not to attack any more merchants that quite frankly was a worthless concession on the part of the green skins. Even as the party was retrieving the Goblin treasure they were regaining control over the survivors, especially since the party had killed the opposition for them. The party also missed a rift to a demonic plane. So I have another possible group of recurring villains that might return in the future. The area will certainly suffer from Goblin attacks again in the future and perhaps they will go looking for other allies to help them.

Anyway, the party set a watch, Sillas taking the first. It passed quietly enough and then Val took over. After a couple of hours her keen ears picked up the sound of someone walking towards them. A figure carrying a lantern walked into the camp. It was a tall man with a well groomed goatee and dressed in a smart dark tunic and trousers with knee high leather boots. Val awoke Sillas and the man invited the party to play cards with him to pass the time. They turned him down and he simply shrugged his shoulders and continued on his way. Val and Sillas were convinced he was some sort of devil and had they played and lost, they’d have lost their souls too.

They will never know the truth (evil chuckle).

Eventually the party made it back to the road and the Monastery. Welcomed as heroes the were given rooms to rest in and were a bit surprised when a feast was laid on for them where they were feted. In the middle of the feast the group announced they were donating 10% of their haul of treasure to the Monastery, and managed to change the remaining silver to gold to make it much easier for them to carry. Zolis drank until he passed out, Cadmus got friendly with a serving maid and disappeared. Sillas after years of working in a tavern decided to stick to water, but Val had a few. Exhausted from the days labours and well fed, the party slept well. The next day, everyone woke up refreshed and happy.

Except for Zolis. That man really can’t handle his alcohol. He had a raging hangover and was throwing up everywhere.

The group headed back down the road towards Asbravn to collect their reward. Every bump and rut in the road felt like an earthquake to Zolis. The only thing that distracted them on the trip was a lone figure striding along the road. As he got closer they could see it was in very fancy looking clothes, but when they got even closer they could see the figure was a skeleton wearing velvet clothes and a tri-corner hat with a large feather on the top. Zolis jumped off the moving wagon, fell over and threw up again. The skeleton kept on walking. Zolis tried getting in front of it, and it just stepped around him and kept going. Cadmus slept through most of this and by the time he was woken up the cart was some distance from the figure. Eventually Zolis got bored of trying to get its attention and returned to the cart.

(Quick note, the skeleton comes from a previous game where the GM lovingly crafted a recurring villain to menace the party. In our first encounter he had Hold Person cast on him and then got this throat cut. In order to hide the crime the party wizard who liked to dabble in a bit of abracadaver animated the body and told him to go for a walk. Now whenever I am running a game of D&D he gets a cameo as he still wanders, damned to eternally walk the earth).

The journey continued with the group discussing modifications they could make to the cart (think in terms of a medieval Mad Max) and all went well until the party reached the town and were assessed for taxes again. This time, carrying a stock of magical items the party found themselves facing a demand for 107 gold. While most of the party was willing to pay (somewhat reluctantly it has to be said), but Zolis flew into a rage at the thought of paying out so much money for items when he didn’t know what they did. The party tried sneaking a couple of people in leaving the cart outside, but the assessor had been so incensed by Zolis earlier that he was keeping an eye out for them and ordered the town guards not to let them in without paying the full price. Eventually Zolis had to give in, with much wailing and gnashing of teeth and the party got inside. Out of all the enemies the group had encountered so far and the number of times Zolis had been near death it is somewhat strange that his sworn enemy is a taxman.

After quite some delay finally the party got inside and headed to the Temple of Lathander. Dawnbringer Valeria welcomed them warmly and having already heard from the Monastery of the parties endevours she gratefully rewarded the party. However on the information about the Mask she could provide little. Nothing in the Temple’s archives had related directly to it, however they did get a reference to another tome, the Book of Skelos (I am a REH fan) which the clergy of Lathander had a copy of, but in a temple in another city (Teziir) about a weeks travel by horse.

Zolis then wanted to learn some new spells so he could identify the magic items they had collected. Unfortunately he was told this would mean dealing with the Red Wizards of Thay who have an enclave in the city and had uncut the other wizards prices, driving them out of business.

And with that, we ended the session for the night.

This session was slightly more disorganised that usual. I'd been out all day and Kristi was super tired and had to go sleep so I was making dinner and entertaining our guests at the same time, but I think everyone had fun anyway. Just about to calculate XP's but I think some of the party will have hit third level. Mind you, I was surprised when the XP's for the battle at the Monastery didn't level up the survivors. Although I had two weeks to write the adventure I wasn't 100% on what the party was going to do so I had to write a couple of possible different scenarios.

Still can't believe they missed the demonic rift.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on August 14, 2017, 08:32:46 PM
Demonic rifts and hellmouths rarely leap right out at you, I've noticed.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: clockworkcanary on August 15, 2017, 07:03:16 AM
Great write-up. Had no idea we were close to any rifts lol. The wizard's antics were hilarious. He gets knocked out by various monsters, but what really sets him off is that darned tax collector!

Had a great time playing; looking forward to the next one! Hopefully the two others will be able to join us.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 15, 2017, 12:51:55 PM
Great write-up. Had no idea we were close to any rifts lol. The wizard's antics were hilarious. He gets knocked out by various monsters, but what really sets him off is that darned tax collector!

Had a great time playing; looking forward to the next one! Hopefully the two others will be able to join us.

Just wait until you finish the campaign and the ending goes all Scooby Doo....


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 18, 2017, 01:09:58 PM
Anders also has a bit of an advantage there. He rolled a fairly low wisdom score and has been playing it pretty well by doing quite a few foolish things. Its why he is slightly ahead of the party XP wise, which is going to be fun since technically the most powerful member of the group is an bumbling idiot.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 20, 2017, 03:21:32 AM
So, a few adventure sessions in how does things stand for the party.

Personnel wise they have all the bases covered. The have the classic pain bearer, spell caster, healer and thief set up and an additional melee specialist which means they are flexable enough to handle most challanges. Group weaknesses are a lack of stealth. Although they do have a rogue in the group most of the group is in the heaviest armour they can afford and would struggle to sneak past a sleeping deaf man. Who had just died. Another weak area is going to be social situations. The group has been through several big fights. Armour is rent and torn in places, bloodstained and not repaired. Should they find themselves dealing with nobles and so on, that is going to make a big impression. They also have a generally good alignment so inter-party conflicts that way haven't been an issue so far, but can also limit the groups options on how to deal with situations. They did manage to avoid a major moral quandry in the last session. Had they fully explored the caves in the last session where they'd have came across the Goblin women and children. They could have killed them all, ensuring the area would have been safe from Goblin raids for several generations, but that would have effectively been slaughtering creatures unable to fight back.

We have a couple of people possibly considering taking the last group spot. Will be interesting to see if that ends up reinforcing one of the existing roles in the party or adding something new (druid, bard, paladin etc) and how that effects group dynamics. Although no group leader has yet emerged, Zolis and Val have formed a core group and their actions generally tend towards being cautious. Other than Zolis just trying on any magic items he finds without knowing what they do. The group has also done a little bit of adding two plus two and making five, it will be interesting to see where those assumptions take them (I may even run with those and change the game a little to fit them in depending on how things go). Some friends will turn out to be enemies, and even then things won't be quite that straight forward.

The group is approaching a major plot point where they will find out a lot of what is going on (if all goes to plan I think they will hit this in two to three sessions time. After that adding new party members will become slightly more awkward, but that is by the by), but not everything.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 20, 2017, 04:25:31 PM
Part Five of the Tale Of The Band Of The Hand.

As tonights adventure started with the whole group present (Zolis (Anders), Zagan (Soren), Cadmus (Kristi), Val (Tina) and Sillas (Dave) had returned to Asbravn, picked up a reward from the Temple of Lathander and were looking for a way to pick up an Identify spell so Zolis could learn it and find out what the magical items they had received actually did. Finding they had no other choice the group decided they'd head off to a compound ran by the Red Wizards of Thay (Thay is a land ran by a cult of wizards that is sort of viewed by the rest of the free world the same way the west viewed the Soviet Union during the cold war) that sold magical items. Going inside a white walled area they saw several buildings. A couple of serious looking guards in outlandish clothes directed them to one of the buildings. Inside a friendly looking bald man dressed in red introduced himself as Gervan of Thay. He had the scroll the party wished to buy and at a price that was a bit lower than they expected. The group tried bartering and were told that if they could find the same scroll cheaper elsewhere he would refund the difference. A little bit surprised at the friendly welcome from what they had heard of Thay the party paid up without further arguement.

They decided to find an inn that was on the moderately high price range, and found a place called "The Rumpled Bedsheets". Inside was expensively decorated and the party splashed out for individual rooms for three nights. Zolis sequestered himself in his room to study the scroll (which would take 24 hours) and then write it into his spell book (if he managed to learn it from the scroll then he'd need another 24 hours to inscribe the spell into his book. These timings become important later). Some of the party went to pick up mundane supplies while Val went to find a map and Sillas decided to pick up an extra horse and a couple of mules to pull the wagon as well as some repairs to the wagon and a cover for it. He paid over twice the asking price for the work on the wagon.

Val found a building called "The Most Glorious and Worshipful Guild of Cartographers and Calligraphers". Heading inside she got some funny looks at her travel stained clothing. The clerk was definately being all snooty to her and despite being a hobbit, managing to look down his nose at her. Initially Val asked for a large map and he said two gold and starting pulling out a large sheet of parchment ( but not so large carrying it would have been a problem), but she changed her mind and only wanted a map to Teziir. She also then started asking what the cities were like on the way to Teziir, getting an exasperated "I make and sell maps, not travel guides" from him. He pulled out a sheet of paper, drew an L shape and maked some cities on it and sent her on her way wanting her out of his (the party wearing blood stained and torn clothing is not going to make them fans in high places). On the way back she bumped into Kano. He told her he'd been looking for them since he got to Karlston and found they'd already picked up something he'd been sent there to collect. They could either meet him just before sundown the next night and hand it over, or he would track them, find them and take it. He then walked backwards into the shadows and disappeared, despite Val running straight in after him. She returned to the inn, but didn't tell the others of her encounter.

Cadmus in the meanwhile was sorting out stuff in his room when he got a knock on his door. Opening it he saw an attractive young lady standing there wearing clothing that would be described using words like 'diaphonous' and 'revealing', perhaps even 'skimpy'. She asked him if he required any... extra services. With a smile he invited her in and was then occupied for the rest of the night.

Zolis also had a knock on the door and found a similar woman standing there. She got an answer of "NO!" and a door slammed in her face and he went back to studying his spell. Zagan was downstairs playing at cards and losing when a young lady sat on his lap, started nibbling on his ear and told him "You know what they say sweetheart, unlucky at cards, lucky at love. How'd you like to come upstairs with me and get lucky?" so they both disappeared up into his room.

Apparantly the name of the inn wasn't a clue as to what kind of establishment they had rented rooms in. I mean I thought "The Rumpled Bedsheets" was subtle but still obvious.

Anyway, Sillas returned from buying livestock and Val returned from her travels in time to see Zagan disappearing upstairs with company. Val got a tap on the shoulder and turned around to see a well muscled man wearing nothing but leather underpants standing there. She declined his services, much to his disappointment so he asked Sillas if he was interested instead only to be turned down again. A dusky woman then moved in on Sillas and after turning her down the pair decided to retire to their room rather than stay downstairs and continue to attract attention.

The night passed with much knocking on walls and apparantly some sort of prayer meetings going on in a couple of rooms. Certainly there was many cries of "OH GODS OH GODS OH GODS" going on. I had already decided not to roleplay out those details of these encounters, so that is as much detail as anyone gets on what happened inside the rooms. Just use your imaginations. Well ok, if you really want details they all played cards. Happy Families and all the shouts were because everyone found it really exciting and the banging was caused by people slamming there hands down on the table.

The next day found Sillas collecting his cart along with Zagan. The pair of them were trying to set it all up when an old man (he looks on the wrong side of 90) came over and started berating them on not setting up the tack and harness correctly. He kept shouting abuse at the group until they offered him a job looking after the animals for them, although after they'd offered him the job at one gold per 10 days (they could have bartered him down to 10 silver but offering him one gold made him a very happy old man) they decided that was something they should discuss with the rest of the group. The party also decided to see if they could get a job on a travelling caravan going to Teziir to make a little extra money en route. Alas, the harvest having been collected the previous week and most of it having been sold on, the seasonal merchants had already moved on. They did find one pudgy merchant who was looking for a group to take a chest to one of the cities on the way to Teziir. He was willing to pay 50 gold up front and 100 gold of confirmation of delivery. It was decided to discuss this with the rest of the group too and get back to them (frankly this was easy money).

Back at the inn, Sillas mentioned he'd bumped into the man they had encountered when initially travelling to Asbravn just before he found the party, and he said to tell them he'd find them. Val then mentioned he'd encountered him yesterday and he wanted to meet them that evening. The group decided to hire the old man as a driver and that they should try and bargain for more money from the merchant (Ebenezeer) and they would need more time before starting the job. They returned to speak to him, but the parties demands were too much and it ended in an arguement and no job.

Leaving Zolis to continue studying his new spell the rest of the group set off to the commons. It was dusk when they got there and Kano was waiting alone (well other than with his pet wolf dog). He demanded the group hand over the mask. They protested claiming the didn't have it and Kano insisting they did and had better hand it over or else. Val was sneaking in the shadows and coming up behind him while checking that Kano was indeed on his own. Warnings that he didn't seem intimidated by the group despite being heavily outnumbered went unheaded and eventually despite Kano's honourable nature, he could see he wasn't going to get anywhere by just talking to the group. He drew his rapier and dagger and combat begain. The fighters in the group went first, Zagan hitting a solid blow with his greatsword, but not one that took Kano out of the fight. A lunge from Sillas went wide, then Kano responded. His blades flashed in the half light leaving a couple of deep scars on Zagan's face, moving past his defence so easily he might as well have been sleeping. Val managed to inflict a couple of light scratches on him with a sneak attack that went badly wrong.  Very quickly realising they were seriously outmatched the group stood back and decided to parlay some more. Kano kept his weapons drawn, but in a defensive posture. He guessed correctly that Zolis had the mask while the others had came to speak to him and told them to bring it to him tomorrow morning, or he would come and take it.

The party asked what would happen in the theorectical situation that someone was wearing the mask and was unable to remove it. They didn't like the answer they got. Kano knew of two ways to remove the mask. One was to kill the wearer in which case the mask would fall off the wearer. The second option was to flay the skin off the wearers face and make a new mask from the flesh. He made it quite clear to the group that he could quite easily enforce either option, but would give them the choice.

Limping back to the inn in somewhat lower spirits than they set out they had a late night discussion with Zolis. He did not fancy either option one or two. Everyone discussed what to do the next day. Cadmus favoured going to her temple to ask aid or speaking to the Red Wizards, even if they could remove the mask, giving it to them in return. My jaw dropped in amazement at that one. Zolis however was deadset against involving the Red Wizards. Various other plans were discussed including running away, or trying to set a trap for Kano. Some wanted to flee that night, but Zolis needed until noon the next day to finish inscribing his spell.

Eventually it was decided to let Zolis finish his spell which would mean they would be over the time limit for Kano and then run. The party reasoned that while Kano had something that enabled him to track the rough location of the mask, he couldn't tell who had it (he guessed Zolis simply because he wasn't there). Everyone then retired back to their rooms to get some sleep. It was agreed they would all sleep alone this time. As Val returned to her room she noticed her door was ajar. Sneaking up and peering it in she saw the man who had tried to pick her up the night before lying naked on his bed, his oiled muscled gleaming in the candlelight. With a smile she slipped inside her room, locked the door and cut scene to morning.

More games of Happy Familes then.

In the morning Val came downstairs positively glowing. The group was breakfasting. One of the bar staff politely informed the group that someone was standing at the door insisting he was an employee of theirs and wanted to speak to them. Remembering the driver Sillas went to tell him they would be heading off in a couple of hours. Zolis came down stairs looking a bit haggered but having finished inscribing the spell into his spellbook.

Val accompanied by Sillas and Zagan headed off to the temple to see what aid they could get there. Valeria told them she was willing to do whatever she could, but she didn't command any soldiers. She was reluctant to risk a fight inside the temple but would do it for the party. She was able to provide a few extra healing potions for the party, but was unable to advise them on ways to sneak unnoticed out of the city. Afterall, the God of the Morning Light does not skulk around in the shadows. They rejoined the rest of the party back at the inn and everyone decided to leave the city immedietely.

The old man (Bran) they had hired, carrying a small barrel under one arm and something looking like a trumpet on a wooden stick grumbled at the change of plans, but had the wagon and mules and horses ready very quickly. Everyone climbed onto the wagon and it careered off with an unexpected turn of speed that left the party holding on for dear life and many pedestrians diving out the way. Their driver cackled and sang the fantasy equivilent of Highway To Hell.

With that the session drew to an end.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 21, 2017, 11:56:53 AM
Oh, the group told their driver to get out of town fast. But although they had decided to travel north based on a vague feeling Zolis had they didn't actually tell him where to drive too. Well the old man is addicted to speed, so where ever they are going they are going to get there fast. Think I'll roll a dice for the direction they will discover they are travelling in. 1-2 North, 3-4 West and 5-6 south.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 26, 2017, 02:43:31 PM
Decided to put a footer on the game. So far I've written 67 pages. I am wondering if the party is now going to encounter 12 of those pages or go off and do something entirely different.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 27, 2017, 03:44:10 PM
Part Five and a half of The Tale Of The Band Of The Icky Hand

Expecting the party to travel north and following Zolis's ultimatum last week I prepared lots of stuff for them heading north. However when the group found themselves travelling south and then east towards Teziir it was decided just to keep going in that direction then explore north afterwards. Luckily I did have some stuff prepared for that journey, although most of it was concentrating on their destination rather than the journey. They did come across a couple of prepared encounters which didn't go exactly as expected, but these things never do.

You join us tonight as the party started off heading southwards thanks to a random dice roll and being spotted by Kano. He started to chase after the group. Sillas and Zagan were both on horses while everyone else sat on the cart. Sillas tried to speak to Kano, but was answered by a crossbow bolt flying off in entirely the wrong direction. As Kano cursed his faulty crossbow (obviously crossbows are shoddily made around these parts as they constantly break or misfire) the party sped off and escaped. Leaving the city gates the group realised they had told Bran to drive fast, but not where too.

Cadmus tied himself into the front seat beside Bran while Val and Zolis held on for dear life being thrown about the back of the cart as Bran coaxed unheard of levels of speed out of his mules. Zolis's plans to examine the magical items they had found went out the window and pleading with the driver to slow down were only met with cackles and hoots of laughter followed by coughing fits from the old man. He didn't stop until lunchtime. A very sore and bruised Zolis wanted to fire him when the pair had an arguement, but the Bran pointed out since they hadn't actually paid him his first wage yet that he would refuse to be fired. Cadmus intervened and asked for him just to drive slowly. The cart started up again with a slow clip, clop, clip, clop as Bran obstinately went as slow as the mules could while still moving forward. Bran also introduced the group to his Dwarven Firestick (which looks like a trumpet on a stick), pointed it at the Zolis and asked if he wanted to see whose magic was better. Zolis didn't seem to realise the cantankerous old man was effectively challanging him to a duel (which as you'll see later was just as well for Zolis). Eventually though Bran got bored with the slow pace and his speed demon side kicked in again.

There were however no more complaints about speed that day.

The party reached the first city on their route, the merchant city of Iriaebor late at night, just as the guards were closing up. Some clever doubletalk from Val convinced the guards that they should let them all in and the group would return in the morning to pay taxes. Bribes I had expected, possibly threats. But to get in by promising to come back in the morning and pay taxes was again something unexpected. What was even more unexpected was in the morning when the rogue actually did return to the gate to pay the due taxes (although they decided not to take their magical items to be assessed and taxed). She was met with amazed faces when she told the guards her story, and when she repeated it to the tax assessor at the city gates, he told her that the two guards who let her in would most certainly be out of a job when they came back for their next shift.

No good deed goes unpunished after all.

Staying the night in an inn, the group found it was much quieter inside than most inn's in the town. As it turned out the reason for this was this was the place where off duty town watchmen came to drank and they would get very upset if anything happened that put them back on duty. Gratefully the party spend a quiet night.

The next day was a bit more eventful. Zolis sent his raven out scouting and it reported they were being followed by Kano. Suddenly Zolis wanted Bran to drive much faster. "Young buggers, first they ask you to go fast and they complain when you go fast. Then they want you to go slow and they complain when you go slow. Daft buggers. Now they wants me to go fast. I should give them all a taste o' me magic and see if that shuts them up. Buggers!" They didn't get to go fast for long as a lone knight was blocking the road and challanging any fighting men who passed to single honourable combat. Sillas said he had no interest in such a fight but Zagan reluctantly accepted. Terms were agreed as to be to first blood, on foot. Zagan accepted a blade from the knight who in his turn used a long sword and shield. The pair clashed, both feinting and lunging at each other. Eventually when Zagan left himself open after taking a mighty swing the knight got passed his guard and sunk the tip of his blade into Zagan's shoulder winning the fight. He offered to heal up Zagan's wound, but he said he could deal with it himself. With a salute to and from the knight the party continued on their way across the bridge.

With no one looking out behind them the group was surpised when Kano rode up behind them. Alerted by the group to the threat, Bran said "Bugger it, bandit. I can take care of the little turd!", shoved the reins into a surprised Cadmus's hands and climbed to the back of the wagon. Kneeling down he took careful aim and when Kano was reaching out to grab onto the wagon Bran pulled the trigger on his blunderbuss creating a fifteen foot wide cone of high velocity small metal objects. Kano's very expensive warhorse took the brunt of the blast, while in accordance with the laws of momentum Bran went flying the opposite direction, crashing into the front of the wagon. Kano's horse fell down and rolled over but momentum still continued to apply and Kano went bouncing along the road without his mount. The group could have fled on here, but decided to finish Kano off since he was lying on the ground not moving. By the time they had slowed down and turned around however he had recovered his wits and climb somewhat shakily to his feet, then drew his rapier and dagger.

Sillas and Zagan tried to ride him down from horseback, but Zagan found it hard to control his steed with his knees and swing his two handed sword at the same time. Kano took advantage of this and ran over slashing Zagan deeply with both his weapons, forcing Zagan to retreat over to the wagon in the hope of getting some healing. Sillas just using a long sword had no trouble controlling his animal and charged at Zagan thrusting his blade at him in passing while Kano slashed back. Both men drew blood. Val attempted to fire her crossbow at Kano, but the poor quality of crossbows in this region told once again and the bolt snapped in twain snarling up the firing mechanism. It would take a bit of time to clear it and fire again. Zolis cast a spell to help make Zagan harder to hit in combat while Cadmus healed the worst of his wounds. Val then tossed Zagan a healing potion and suitably healed up he climbed off his mount and prepared to fight on foot.

Sillas tried a second ride by attack, but Kano was ready for him and stepped right beside the charging mount and stabbed up, deeply into Sillas's chest, however his rapier was caught on the steeds reins and whipped out his hand landing some ten feet away. Cadmus and Zoils continued their largely ineffectual hail of crossbow bolts, while Val managed to clear the jam on her weapon as Kano retrieved his weapon then charged towards the group on the back of the cart. Meanwhile Bran was frantically attempting to prepare his weapon to fire again. He hadn't ever met anything before that had needed shot at twice. Zolis intoned some ancient arcane words and a gout of fire burst forth from his hands towards Kano, scorching him a little, but was answered by being skewered by Kano. Barely alive the wizard staggered backwards, tripping up over his backpack and falling on his butt. Val swapped her crossbow for her dagger and snuck around Kano's side but was unable to find a chink in his armour. Other than Zolis everyone else closed in for melee while the wizard summoned a creature to defend him.

Now here was where I had a bit of a dilema. Zolis's player had to drop out earlier due to not feeling well so I was controlling him and I had to decide what creature Zolis would summon. Reading the list of things he could call on to help him. My eye was immediently drawn to Fiendish Squid. Based on his previous actions summoning such a creature in a land locked environment seemed entirely logical. However I did notice a small note after the spell saying such a creature could only be summoned in an aquatic environment, so he called on a large fiendish monsterous scorpion instead placing it between him and his would be assassin.

At this point I also forgot that Kano was going to take a powerful healing potion he had hidden, and he reopened a whole bunch of wounds on Zagan instead. Surrounded by enemies and missing his faithful wolfhound Kano wasn't able to block every thrust at him, his dagger was broken parrying a blow from Zagan's greatsword and enough damage was getting through his armour to leave some telling wounds. Finally, his leg grasped and being crushed by the demonic scorpion and with a cry of pain Kano collapsed to the ground either dead or unconscious. Val quickly looted him and they carefully checked a wooden box he had on him believing this was how he was able to find the group. Opening it after checking it for traps they found inside was a needle pointing southward. Zolis confirmed the item was indeed magical in some way, but that he would need more time and concentration to tell exactly how it worked. The group stripped him of everything, quickly buried the body beneath some stones, loaded his equipment onto the back of the wagon then fled the scene.

No one actually thought to check though and see if Kano was actually dead or merely unconscious.

Priapurl was the next city they passed through. The walls and many buildings inside seemed to be under construction and the only inns available were in large marque style tents. The group stayed in one overnight and left in the morning. Bran mentioned the city had been raised two years back when an Orcish horde had came up from the south. It had taken an alliance of several local cities and troops from Cormyr to put an end to the invasion and it would only be a matter of time before another one came along. He also mentioned that in his youth Bran had been an adventurer until he took an arrow in his knee and was forced to stop.

The next days journey was similarly uneventful and the party reached Eversult and spent another quiet night in an inn. I don't know kids today... when I was adventuring it was all night carousing, bar fights and waking up in strange prisons where the only way to gain your freedom was to go on some quest. Or while you were in the inn a man would stagger in and collapse, a note pinned to his back with a dagger which would start a quest (I had one character where this happened so often he'd put a mattress on the floor just behind the door and be waiting with a first aid kit to deal with it).

As Kristi and Anders were feeling ill and Dave had to go deal with some family stuff it was decided to call the game here. Hopefully next week the group will reach Teziir where much of the plot could be potentially revealled and many mysterious goings on... go on.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on August 28, 2017, 11:28:13 AM
If there's one thing that can ruin an adventure, it is a shoddily-made crossbow. Kano really was not having a good day.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on August 28, 2017, 12:44:04 PM
I am trying to decide if Kano is going to reappear or if its time for his replacements to appear. Even if he is dead, he may still have a big influence on someone in the group...


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on September 01, 2017, 10:08:30 AM
I am trying to decide if Kano is going to reappear or if its time for his replacements to appear. Even if he is dead, he may still have a big influence on someone in the group...

Alex, you have any idea, by chance, how much D&D first edition books are selling for these days? (DM Guide, Player's Handbook, Monster Manual, Fiend Folio.) Apparently these are first edition re-printed circa 1983 with updated covers but all the contents are unchanged from the original covers. They're in good shape. Are they worth anything significant, you think?


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 01, 2017, 10:22:26 AM
I have no idea on what price they would go for, although I will do some research for you. If you or a friend has them I would expect them to go for a fairly hefty amount. I know of roleplaying books from the early to mid 80's going for around £180-£200 which unless the currancy exhange rates have changed a lot since I checked a few months ago would be $225-$250. I'd expect 1st ed D&D to be more than that. Give me half an hour and I'll get back to you with what I can find. I didn't start playing D&D until later editions so I am not sure on the really old stuff.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 01, 2017, 10:34:28 AM
Check out the following link for a rough guide.

https://www.amazon.com/first-edition-dungeons-dragons-Books/s?ie=UTF8&page=1&rh=n%3A283155%2Ck%3Afirst%20edition%20dungeons%20and%20dragons (https://www.amazon.com/first-edition-dungeons-dragons-Books/s?ie=UTF8&page=1&rh=n%3A283155%2Ck%3Afirst%20edition%20dungeons%20and%20dragons)

Not quite as high as I'd thought though.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 04, 2017, 02:29:27 PM
Part Six of The Tale Of The Band Of The Icky Hand. Or Glen/Glenda?

With Dave busy and Anders feeling ill it was down to Val (Tina), Cadmus (Kristi) and Zagan (Soren) to explore Teziir and discover what was happening with the Mask.

The party travelled through the country side, their speed demon ancient driver at the helm. In contrast to their previous journeys this one went peacefully, including a night spent camping in the woods. Cadmus was able to heal up the rest of Zagan's injuries and restore him to full health. The next day they reached Teziir and were pleasantly surprised to find no tax collectors waiting to take money off them (the city taxes merchants based on profits, not the value of what they transport through the city here). Immediently finding a tavern to set up a temporary base in, the party decided to avoid the local branch of 'The Rumpled Bedding' which as it turns out is a chain of brothels across the region and instead went to a place called 'The Longhouse'. Well named for its size, the Longhouse was converted to an inn from two warehouses. It is frequented by moderately wealthy merchants and lesser nobility, but gold speaks its own language and when the party were offered the choice between the common room, a standard room or one of the exclusive theme rooms, each one of which were promised to make the occupant feel like they were transported to a different and unique far off land, they decided to splash out some money and go for the theme rooms.

As it turned out, each of the theme rooms had a different style of carpet in them, although since this is the first time anyone in the group has actually encountered a carpet, it was still impressive.

Plans were made and despite the best attempts of the party to intervene, Zolis hit the alcohol early and hard. When he was persuaded to go up stairs he stopped at the bar for a midnight snack (and by snack I mean drink) to take up with him.

In the morning the group split up (oh, if only I was running a horror themed game). Cadmus went to the local temple of Lathander, Zagan wanted to go looking for a shop he could sell the Ioun Stone they'd found and Val wanted to sound out the local thieves guild for some extra training. Zolis was staying in his room to sleep off his hangover and do some identifying of magical items.

Zagan found a shop called 'Mervins Magnificent Magical Merchandise', and going inside found the proprieter to be an ancient old man who was rather excitable when confronted with magical items. After some haggling they settled on a price. Haggling would feature a lot this game, sometimes going the parties way, and sometimes not so much. This time they got a pretty reasonable price for the item, but Zagan had to wait an hour or so while the old man checked the item was what he claimed it to be.

Cadmus meanwhile, took his letter of introduction to the temple of Lathander and found to his surprise a rather grim and dark looking edifice rather than the white temples he is used to for his god. One of the clerics explained to him the local rock was a dark granite and most buildings were made of it. The enterence was also rather dark and foreboding, but on entering the main hall, he found it was fully lit through a magnificent stained glass window and painted a soft yellow, the colour of morning sunshine. Showing the letter to one of the clerics, Cadmus was taken through the temple to the back, where once more everything was made from dark gray stone. They went upstairs several flights of stairs before reaching the rooms of the local First Dawnbringer (not sure if I have mentioned this or not, but as Kristi's god Lathander is the god of the Morning and his priests are referred to as Dawnbringers. I decided that the local head of each temple would be known as the First Dawnbringer). This it turned out was a very cantankerous old man who first accused Cadmus of being an assassin sent by (as he called them), "those buggers downstairs", who ever always out to poison him. Remaining polite he showed his letter of introduction to the old man (who he learned was called First Dawnbringer Maleon). He read it and with much "Hrumpf"ing was told in no uncertain terms that just because some young pup thought she could command the entire resources of Lathander just because she wrote a letter didn't mean it was going to happen. Cadmus told him the reason why he had to consult the Book of Skelos. Maleon told him that he'd speak to the one who guarded the book, but it wasn't something decent people should have any truck with and in 30 years its keeper hadn't once agreed to let anyone see it so he (Cadmus) was just wasting his time and more importantly that of Maleons. After explaining to Maleon why they needed to consult the book (basically everything that happened in the first episode), Maleon told Cadmus he'd pass it on to the keeper. He was then told to bugger off, and warned not to drink the water in the temple as the young buggers downstairs poisoned it to try kill him off so they could get his job. He was told to return the next morning for his answer. Which would be no.

When Cadmus spoke to Maleon, this started a timeline of events ticking off in the background. The consequences of this will affect the party in the future, although they won't know this. I just thought I'd y'know give you some behind the scenes info.

While all this was going on Valeria wandered around town until she started seeing symbols carved into stone buildings that she recognised as thieves signs. Eventually she found one that marked it as a reliable shop to fence stolen goods to. She sold the masterwork daggers the group had been gifted from the Monastery following the battle with the goblins, but found the shopkeeper had an interesting way of haggling. He offered 65 gold each for the daggers. When she tried to haggle him up he then offered 64 gold, then 63 and told her he'd keep going downwards the more she tried. Prying for some additional information she was able to get the location of one of the local thieves guilds safehouses, although she had to pay well for the information.

Finding her way deep into the slum like docks area by the river she found an unassuming building with many dock workers loading goods onto barges. She noticed several however were watching her carefully and doing very little work. She knocked on the door and was able to talk her way inside. Walking in she had a bright light shining in her face, but could see the outline of several people, one of whom demanded to know why she was there and more importantly how she had found out to come here.

She well and truely dropped the fence in it. He is going to find himself hanging upside down in the docks nailed to a wooden post and waiting for the tide to come in and drown him before the sun rises on the next day.

Anyway, Val said she wanted to join the local guild and get some training. They said they'd think about it and she should return the next day. She didn't notice she was being followed all the way home though.

Cadmus managed to track down Zagan just as the old man was finishing his incantations. The pair of them headed back to the inn, where they met up with Sillas, and Val. Zolis was still up in his room. Sillas had been checking up on him regularly and mostly Zolis had been throwing up, but he had been at work identifying the magical items they had collected. He was only able to investigate three items each day before he ran out of spells however, so it would take him a couple of days to get through everything.

The group decided to go up and visit Zolis. When they knocked on his door he yelled (as quietly as possible given his fragile state) that he wanted to be left alone. When the group persisted he finally opened the door up and after being nagged a lot by a very persistant Zagan he admitted he had researched some of the items they had found. The gem performed a variety of functions all based on it emitting light in various ways. It could be used as a lantern or an offensive weapon, with different uses draining different levels of power from it (three different words of command would power the gem, Illuminate, Potato and Kitten). The leather belt was a Belt of Dwarven Strength, which would make the wearer stronger. It also had some other property, but other than it was from the transmutation school Zolis had not been able to find out exactly what it did and finally the ring that Zolis had put on would increase the wearers ability to climb.

Zagan decided to try on the belt. Immediently his muscles started to swell up, but also his hair started to grow long, and the armour he was wearing was suddenly feeling very cramped in the chest area. His course features became softer and more femanine while when he asked what was going on, he found his voice had increased in pitch somewhat.

Pulling off his very restrictive armour, he now found (s)he possessed a fairly large pair of breasts. Looking down her trousers Zagan found while he had gained something upstairs, he was now missing something down below. Having to reroll his charisma Zagan found he was now a very attractive woman. Not quite super model material, but still pretty hot looking.

Ah, the joys of cursed items. Especially ones that switch your gender.

Standing in the corridor half naked, Zagan paniced for a few moments and tried to remove the belt, only to find it wouldn't budge before thinking "Actually, this isn't so bad. This has definite possibilites here." The rest of the party was trying to find ways of getting the belt off while Zagan protested "Hey, wait a sec. I am not so sure I want this belt removed." He was immediately carted off back off to Mervins Magnificent Magical Merchandise. Well ok, they got downstairs before the shocked reactions of the other customers reminded Zagan she was topless, and being female this was not a socially acceptable thing. She ran back upstairs to her room, got dressed and then went to the shop.

Being wolf whistled at all the way the group made it to Mervins. The party told the old man they needed the belt on Zagan (or Zagena as the others started to refering to her as), but not why. If they had it might have changed to old mans reply. They kept telling him to examine Zagan's belt so his eyes would drop down. Then Zagan/Zagena would say, no eyes slightly higher, then when she realised what he'd now be staring at told her to look at the belt. This cycled through a couple of times, the old mans eyes going up and down Zagan's form until someone started asking him for a price. Mervin offered to take Zagan through his back room and examine the problem a bit more closely. She went through and enquired what it would cost. When she was told either a couple of hundred gold or 45 minutes of her time upstairs. Zagan briefly contemplated flashing her breasts at him (which would have meant a Fortitude for the old guy not to suddenly have a heart attack and die), before deciding to run out of the shop insisting the others follow her and he was happy to live with being a woman for the moment.

(Men playing women in my games do get a slightly harder time from male non player characters, just to give them an idea of how difficult life can be for women sometimes. Plus its funny to hear men try and deal with these situations).

Zagan decided to spend some of the cash the group had managed to earn and found himself a new Great Sword, its cross hilt inlaid with ebony, while the two foot long ivory hilt seemed made for his grasp. Everyone then headed back to the Longhouse for some food, although on the way Cadmus did pick up and attractive red dress for Zagan. I figure Zagan wearing it would pretty much look like Tracy Helfer in the remake of Battlestar Galactica.

Zolis finally surfaced coming down and heading straight to the bar for more alcohol. He joined the rest with a tray filled with drinks The others decided to try and stop him getting drunk and knocked his alcohol over, but Zolis tried to drink the spillage anyway. Since Zolis wasn't aware of what had happened to Zagan, when she tried to persuade him to go up stairs back to him room Zolis misunderstood somewhat. He agreed and headed up to his room picking up two bottles of wine on the way.

Sighing, Val followed after a few seconds and knocked on Zolis's door. Assuming it was the attractive lady in the red dress he told her to enter, Val did only to be shocked when she saw the wizard with an already half empty bottle of wine dancing around drunkenly. Giving up, she left the room and shortly after the others found him passed out on his bed.

The rest of the night passed pretty much peacefully, although the party was starting to worry that the Mask was affecting Zolis's behaviour. Zagan promised to keep the noise down and in the morning the group decided it was ready to face the day. Val went back to her underground contacts while Zagan decided to accompany Cadmus to the temple of Lathander. A very hungover Zolis would again be watched over by poor Sillas.

In the lair of the local thieves guild, Val was told if she wanted to join them she'd need to prove her worth. A merchant by the name of Xzavros who lived in a hideously pink coloured mansion had recently purchased a ruby of unusual size and splendor. If she could retrieve the gem from him she would be allowed into the guild. She took a stroll past his house casually checking it out and looking around the local area. Some of the large houses had guards standing outside (including the one belonging to Xzavros), however the equally large house facing onto the back of her target appaered to have no visable security beyond a locked iron gate. She decided however that she would complete this job on her own, not believing the rest of the group would be willing to engage in thievery.

Cadmus and Zagan entered the temple and found Maleon waiting for them. He seemed rather put out that whoever guarded the Book of Skelos had agreed to see them once he had heard of the masks. Taking them deep underground below the temple he explained they kept old books and documents down here to preserve them, as well as other more esoteric items. They were also warned not to wander off and the area had many magical wards and other protections and anyone exploring might find the meaning of the phrase "curiosity killed the cat". Of course this was peppered with many "Bugger it"s and so on.

Several heavy doors were unlocked and Maleon explained that the locks had to all be done in a certain order or the corridor would explode and collapse as he led them down a dank corridor, barely lit by the flicker from a torch carried by Zagan.

Their guide unlocked a final dark oak door, reinforced with iron studs and offered the group one last chance to stop being silly buggers and go upstairs. Nervously, they decided to continue. He warned them not to take anything from the occupant, not to give him anything and not to touch anything he had touched.

After being told again they were daft buggers, he pulled open the door with a loud creak. As the door opened, the dark corridor was flooded with a soft golden light spilling out from the room. A gentle and cultured voice called out inviting them to enter.

Whatever the pair had been expecting, this wasn't it.

Entering the room, they found a well furnished room, comfortable chairs around a table with a bowl filled with fruit. A man dressed in long yellow silken robes (if you are thinking the king in yellow here, don't. Its not something Lovecraftian) that covered his body other than his hands and face. White gloves however covered his hands and his face was hidden behind a smooth ivory mask marked only by two slits for his eyes. He sat down opposite the party, telling Maleon to sit on a stool over by the door and then lowered his voice to prevent the old priest from overhearing them. He politely enquired about what it was the group wanted to know about. Cadmus recited the story of how they had found the Mask (basically the events of episode one, and mentioned about the bounty hunter who had been chasing them). He agreed that Cadmus could attempt to read the book, but his companion would have to leave the room and await them outside. He also revealled that he had previously been a companion of the man they found hung at the farmhouse. Thirty years before they had been fellow adventurers. With a warning that the book was not like other books and would test anyone trying to read it first. Indeed, just as someone would read it, the book would read the person.

Cadmus approached the book and opened its heavy beaten iron cover.

The world swam before his eyes and faded. Cadmus found himself... floating isn't quite the word but somehow existing in a realm of nothingness. Not even darkness. A dry voice from everywhere and nowhere spoke to her, while it felt like something was probing roughly through his thoughts. If he wanted to read them the voice said, he would have to prove he was strong enough to face the challanges he would face ahead. It would test him with his memories. Possibly something that had happened in his past, or future. The voice from the book told Cadmus it did not understand this thing called time. Suddenly daylight flooded the room and Cadmus found himself staring up at a clear sky while lying on some wet grass. And in a tremendous amount of pain. Looking down he had a large hole in his belly and plenty of blood was running out of it. All around him lay men dead and dying. In the distance an army of undead let by a cowled figure was approaching, killing all those who were just wounded. Cadmus could feel he had enough power for one last healing spell and as he was about to heal himself he heard a wail of pain. A young boy was crawling towards him, his legs horribly mangled.

Cadmus could either heal himself and escape the advancing skeletons or heal the boy.

As he tried to decide which course of action to take, all the while the undead were getting closer and closer.

Finally with the undead just about to reach them he filled himself with divine power and healed his own wound just as the nearest skeleton reached the young boy and plunged its sword into his back. The hooded figure uncovered his face, and just as Cadmus recognised the man controlling the army of undead his vision swam again.

The world returned to nothingness and a voice told him he had proven he had the strength to do what was needed and could read the book.
Had he healed the young boy, he'd have failed the test and had to sit two others. Of course this would also potentially given him some clues as to what would happen in some future encounters, but for the moment he is going to have to be content with a warning about an army of undead...

He was back in the chamber with the man in yellow and Maleon. The strange characters on the book moved and changed forming words that answered Cadmus's questions. It told him that the Masks were made from fragments of a long dead god, and when one put on a Mask he or she could absorb a portion of that gods power. Put enough Masks on and you become a god.

Of course being an ancient tome, it told that story a long more longwindedly. But what you got is the highlights. Besides, only Cadmus knows the full details of what he saw in his test and what he read in that damned book.

After he had finished reading he was reunited with Zagan and the pair left the temple. Maleon was much quieter afterwards than he had before. The group silently went back up the oppresive stairs to the main hall and then out into the sunlight beyond.

Why do these things take so long to write out? I need a scribe to take notes for me. In fact if someone is going to take notes for me, they might as well just type out everything for me.

Everyone headed back to the inn once more. Zolis remained holed up in his room, and was only seen to hand over the items he had identified during the day, then return to hiding. The rapier was a magical item which would improve the wielders chances of hitting his target and increase the damage they did. While no one was watching, Val quietly picked this item up without saying anything to anyone. Kano's mail shirt also proved to be magical increasing the protection given to the wearer which the party debated about and decided to give to Zagan. The final item they group had looked at was the box Kano had used. It allowed the user once per week to track the closest Mask. An additional enchantment on it also allowed the creater to always know where said item was located should they wish to know. A quick discussion decided that this item was then useless to the group as it would always point to Zolis.

I guess no one ever thought that if Zolis gets drunk and wanders off, or gets kidnapped it would be a handy way to help track him down.

The next day much time passed while spending some more gold and upgrading weapons to newer shinier versions (masterwork items generally), then dropping the box off at the temple of Lathander and asking them if they would give it to the man in yellow. Maleon totally refused reminding the party that he had told them they could not give him anything, take anything from him or touch anything he had touched. Although the group tried their best to persuade him otherwise the old man would not budge on this. He did say he could have the box stored underground with various other things best kept out of the publics knowledge. Eventually the group reluctantly agreed to this as a second best option.

After this, everyone headed back towards the Longhouse. The sun was starting to go down by now and long shadows were being cast over the streets. A couple of crashed wagons and a very large crowd of bystanders stood around this watching the drivers shout and argue with each other. Val took the opportunity to lighten someone of their coin purse before the group turned down a narrow alleyway to get to the next street down. At one point the alleyway widened up into a large square with one other exit from it.

Looking around Val noticed there were a lot of figures hiding in the shadows around this square. One man stepped out to block the way on. He told the group they were attracting a lot of interest with where they were going and who they were seeing. Important people in the city wanted to know what they were doing and they could either be friends and tell him what they were up to, or they could not be friends and they'd find out what the group were up to in less pleasant ways.

Zagan flexed his (sorry, her) muscles and stepped up to the stranger. Putting on his most intimidating voice he suggested the man get out his way before something very unpleasant happened to him. Cowed by this woman with a huge sword the thug backed down and backed off. At speed.

I can't believe the group managed to dodge a fight with some basic thugs. Oh well, it just means should they come up against this gang again later on they will have more people to fight later.

With that we ended the adventure for the night.

I think tonights adventure was much more fun than the previous one to run. Not only with a drunken wizard causing havock or Zagan and his belt, but just in general. Last week I had to improvise a lot of what happened and I always feel the game suffers then compared to one where I have enough time to write everything in advance and I know pretty much what the group is going to do. This is the first session so far where no combat has taken place (although I did prepare for up to three combat situations depending on how things went).

The group is showing a definite bias towards not sharing information with each other which has surprised me in several sessions so far. It may even have caused them to miss a few things. Nothing major so far, but it will be interesting to see how this develops.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on September 04, 2017, 08:14:21 PM
Y'know, dude, you should seriously turn these records of each session into a book. They'd adapt well.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 11, 2017, 11:56:42 AM
I was sitting today thinking about bad guys to put up against the party since they have earned themselves a more powerful recurring villian. Or perhaps a group of them. Anyway, in my experience there is one creature like no other for spreading fear and paranoia in a party. It has to be used very carefully as they can easily destroy a campaign.

Lets see how that goes then, although it will be a while before they encounter it.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 12, 2017, 04:43:04 PM
So tonight Tina got her first solo adventure as she snuck off out of the tavern while everyone else was sleeping.

Sticking to the back streets and shadows Val made her way to the merchants district. The sky was a half moon but free from clouds meaning there were plenty of shadows for her to flit through. At this hour of night almost everyone was asleep and only a few houses had guards standing outside. The one she was after fortunately wasn't one of them. As she entered the street she walked a little more casually so as not to attract undue attention, then with a quick look around to make sure no one was watching her, she nimbly climbed up the 10 foot high rough stone wall that surrounded the pink house, carefully avoiding the broken glass shards embedded in the top of the wall.

A quick look around showed no guards patrolling the grounds and the pink house itself was in darkness. Either side of the curving path leading to the house was a well tended small forest with many attractive plants. Were it daytime she'd have seen they were also pink. Doubtless if trees came in pink, they to would have been that shade.

Val crept quietly through the garden, sticking to the cover of the trees, but something out there was quieter than her. Something had picked up her scent as was following her.

Suddenly she found herself barged to the ground as something big jumped on her without making a sound. Her vision was filled with sharp teeth and claws as some animal larger than her ripped at her chest with one sharply taloned paw. She managed to avoid its slavering jaws and further slashes from its claws, shoved herself backwards and managed to stagger to her feet, whipping out the rapier she had taken off Kano. She could now see what was attacking her, some sort of enormous cat, tawny coloured with a dark mane of hair like nothing she had ever seen before. As the beast lunged at her, she as much by luck as skill managed to slash it across its face, piercing one eye and leaving it blind on that side. Enraged it lashed out again with its paw, but Val nimbly stepped back. She was able to fend off the beast, stepping backwards and using trees for cover while it tried biting and clawing at her. Each time her rapier flicked out it managed to open another cut on it, slowly weakening the it from loss of blood. Eventually seeing her opening she thrust forward as its head tried to clamp its fierce jaws in her arm. The tip of the rapier sunk into its body just at the base of the neck and found its mighty heart. With a piteous mewling cry the animal fell dead.

Worried that someone might have heard the death cry and bleeding heavily from the creatures initial onslaught, she staggered through the undergrowth and quickly dashed across the open ground between garden and house. She snuck to a side wall and peered in through a window. As what moonlight there was shone on the front of the house she couldn't see much of the benighted interior, but what she could make out convinced her it was safe to try and get in here. A little bit of work with her thieves tools and she soon had a window open. Obviously Xzavros felt his day time guards and night time pet were security enough to stop anyone getting in. Anyone that is, except Val.

She silently slipped in through the opened window and then slid inside. A quick flash of light from the magic gem the adventurers were given for helping to defend the monastery showed she was in a dining room. The remains of the last meal were still sitting on the table. Many fine portraits were hung on the walls, all of a rather portly, balding chap with a walrus 'tache. She could also see two doors leading from the dining room. Choosing the closest she carefully opened the door (with her light now off) and peaked outside. On the other side of the corridor she could see another door, but the light was too poor to see anything else other than guess she was in a hallway.

Checking the opposite door and losing the last of her light she found herself in a room that appeared to contain desks and books, although since she didn't want to risk using her light too much she couldn't tell what if anything was written on them. She made her way out of that room, back into the dark hallway and found another door.

This time she found herself in the main hallway. A grand staircase swept upwards to the upper floor and enough light entered the room for Val to get a rough idea of the layout of the room, if not any details. She felt her way along the wall, touching a number of portraits and busts in alcoves before reaching the back wall, just missing a door in the shadows under the staircase. Working her way to the other side of the room and almost tripping up over some small tables she eventually managed to locate a door lying open on the far side of the room, however it led into another corridor with no natural light. Her fingertips touching the wall to her right Val used all skills she had learned in her hard life as a thief to make no noise in the dark. Her questing fingertips found another space and peaking in she could see a figure lying on a bed. Carefully closing the door she then snuck along the passageway until she found a dead end and had to work her way back, she found another opening roughly opposite where she had found the door. Heading up that way and searching in the dark revealled only a couple of what seemed to be small bedrooms, possibly servants quarters and then cunningly avoided falling over another staircase, less grand than the one in the hallway.

If Val had ever heard of a ninja she'd know exactly how to describe just how quietly she went upstairs. Her luck started running a little thin though when she kicked something soft and yielding on the floor. It made no sound however. Kneeling down and using her hands to explore she found what she had kicked was a body and round about the neck was rather wet. Sniffing her finger tips she caught the coppery smell of blood and quickly wiped it off on the clothes of the body. Taking her gem out again she illuminated the room, revealing four bodies lying on the floor, all dressed in rather rough clothing. Each bore a single wound, but one that in each case would be instantly fatal. The one she had tripped over had a large hole through his neck, another was almost cleft in two diagonally from his shoulder to his hip. Deciding not to inspect the other bodies she moved onto the next door, but before going through doused her shining gem light.

This took her out onto the balcony above the main hall. Just along the corridor from her was a set of double doors, one lying open. The other wall nearest her had two doors on it, and the furthest away door had but one, all closed. Moving carefully from shadow to shadow and making less noise than the creaking of the house she chose the examine the double doors first. Other than being able to make out a four poster bed, she could see little inside, but she slipped in anyway. Moving to her right and feeling along the wall she found wardrobes and drawers with what felt like clothing. In one of the drawers she found a heavy keyring with a dozen or so keys on it which she slipped into her pouch. Val then continued working her way by fingertips around the room until she felt some heavy velvet. Pulling it to one side she found a window behind it and let a little more light into the room.

This wasn't all together great as the first thing she saw was a naked dead girl lying on the bed, her throat neatly sliced open.

About this point she began to think something was up.

Eventually she came to yet another doorway, but this time it was locked. Again her handy thieves tools came into play and quickly had the door unlocked. Hearing a noise like footsteps behind her Val rolled to the side, and whipped her blade out, but could see nothing. Had it been someone creeping up behind her in the shadows or just her nerves?

After patiently waiting for several minutes she decided to continue with her job. Entering another dark room she decided it would be safe to use her magic gem again and lit up the room. In the centre appeared to be her prize. A ruby the size of her first sat on top of a marble plinth. Around the edges of the room sat several chests. Had she found Xzavros's treasure room?

First of all she carefully examined the plinth the gem sat in. Her thieves senses were tingling, but she could find no evidence of a trap. Something was niggling at her that something about the situation was wrong though. She unlocked one of the wooden chests in the room, but found only paper contracts of old business dealings. Deciding to explore the house further and come back to the gem later she left the 'treasure room'. The other rooms on the top floor were then examined, but appeared to be empty guest bedrooms.

Feeling confident enough to leave the gem shining to light her way, Val returned to the room with the dead servants and went down the way she had came, then seeing another staircase leading down into the cellar she went down into the bowels of the house.

Her light showed her a large room, filled with old furniture. Should she need it, there would be plenty of places to hide. A sliver of light shone through from another room and she just couldn't not investigate when she heard low moans of pain along with a grinding sound, like metal on stone. The door itself was designed to be invisible when closed, fitting perfectly into the stonework. Looking through she could see two men. One was tall and broad, wearing plate armour painted black. He was holding a two handed sword, the tip of which was buried deep in the guts on a man on the floor, barely recognizable as the man in the paintings upstairs. She could hear him say to the man on the floor “Well, I think I have inflicted the amount of pain paid for and required. Let's end this now."He picks up something black and oval shaped, smashes it over the man's head and then sticks the jagged edges in the man's throat. He clasps the hilt of his great sword, still stuck in the corpse and holds it in both hands.

Then his voice dropped to a whisper, but her keen roguish senses could still make out him say “I am truly sorry for the torment you have endured this night, but I am even more sorry that what you are about to endure will make it seem like a pleasant memory. There will be no rest for you on the other side of death.”

A brilliant bluish white light surrounded the corpse, then was slowly drawn up the blade and absorbed by it. The man in black pulled his sword out of the now dead Xzavros, and strode over to a hole in the wall were a crude tunnel led into the darkness.

Val waited until she was sure the armoured man was gone and then entered the room. Xzavros was long past any help she could give, but as she entered she noticed this room was filled with gold coins. She had been so transfixed by what was happening she failed to notice. Apparently this was his real treasure room, and there on a much simpler stone plinth than the one upstairs was sitting another first sized ruby. Examining it incredibly carefully she couldn't find any traps on this one, nor did she get a bad feeling from it, so she took a chance and placed it in a pouch. Feeling a little emboldened when nothing untoward happened she then happily started scooping up handfuls of gold until she could carry no more.

If curiosity killed the cat, then Val's could take out an entire pride of lions. She just had to follow the armoured man through the tunnel. It was rough and looked very recent. The floor was uneven with chunks of stone everywhere, so she decided to keep her light on. Unfortunately when she reached the end of the corridor, the man in black moved out from around the corridor. She had time to notice that he is quite a handsome man, in a dark and sinister way and in a cultured voice he said “Who is this? Some thief has caught an assassin in her claws. Ware ye little thief. I have killed whom I was paid to kill and have no more interest in more death tonight, but if you insist I will send you to the next world and quickly. And I would hate to kill anyone I didn't need to, especially one as pretty as you.”

Deciding discretion was the better part of valour Val simply agreed with him and went back down the tunnel, then as quickly as she could while still remaining hidden made her way back to the tavern to slip into her bed, cuddled up tight around her newfound wealth.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on September 13, 2017, 10:52:57 AM
Deciding discretion was the better part of valour Val simply agreed with him and went back down the tunnel, then as quickly as she could while still remaining hidden made her way back to the tavern to slip into her bed, cuddled up tight around her newfound wealth.

After all, every woman wants to sleep with money.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 20, 2017, 11:44:59 AM
Got some messages about the game. Unfortunately Clockworkcanary is going to have to drop out as our game time is conflicting with other stuff. If in the future his schedule frees up though he would be welcome to come back.

 Tina has decided that Val, rather than going to bed with the gold now wants to go back to the house and help herself to more gold (yes ER, not only does she want to sleep with money, she wants to sleep with lots of money).


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 25, 2017, 03:55:55 PM
Part Seven Of The Ballad Of The Band Of The Icky Hand: Caught Red Handed. And Again.

OK, last week we left off with Val getting back to the tavern and deciding that she wanted to return to the merchants house to get more of his gold. However she realised that someone stronger than her was needed to carry more money. Deciding that Zagan was the most likely to be morally flexable on this she woke him up and told him that she knew where there was a whole lot of money belonging to someone what no longer needed it.

Without asking too many more details Zagan gladly agreed, pulling on his armour and grabbing his sword before emptying his backpack on the floor (his choice of equipment would have consequences later) Val similarly dressed as lightly as possible to carry more dead mans gold. The pair of them headed out into the late night / early morning back to the pink house. Having found the keys to the house, Val unlocked the gates, but crucially left the gates open. This would also have consequences later.

The pair of them descended down into the cellar and the secret treasure room, gleefully filling every pocket and backpack with handfulls of gold, completely unconcerned with the body lying on the floor or the large hole through his guts. Just the kind of wound that would be made by a great sword, just like Zagan was wearing. Alas during the time this took a patrol of city watchmen noticed the open gate and front door of the house and entered to investigate. The party continually failed to hear the footsteps of men wearing mail armour (random historical note, there is no such thing as chain mail armour, it was just called mail armour) until they entered the room and pointing crossbows at the group demanded they lay down their weapons and surrender.

Deciding that charging a bunch of men with loaded crossbows pointed at them was not the most sensible thing, nor would be trying to flee down the tunnel to the sewer (which is a shame as I had prepared a scenario where they would end up having to save a bunch of homeless people living in the sewer from a giant albino alligator) and surrendered. They were stripped of their weapons, gold and equipment, then were marched off the to local gaol.

In the early morning the rest of the party awoke and went down for breakfast. When they went to investigate they found their rooms unlocked and unoccupied. In Val's room a large heap on gold lay on her bed with a fist sized ruby in the middle of it all. In Zagan's room there were no clues to his location. His weapons and armour were gone, and his gear emptied out over his bed. Somewhat worried the party headed out into the morning. Most people were still abed, but some were posting up news of the dreadful murder of the cities leading philanthropist and his household. A reward of 5,000 gold had been posted for the capture of his killers, but two people believed to be the guilty party had already been arrested.

The rest of the party got a sinking feeling about now concerning the identity of the accused. They figured they should pay for another couple of nights staying in the tavern.

Val and Zagan had found themselves together in a 10 foot by 15 foot dungeon, locked behind a heavy wooden door. A barred window provided some light. Calling on a the local jailer she tried to bribe him to take a message to her friends. Looking at her, he said he'd do it, but it would take more than gold (rolled a dice randomly here for what he wanted, it could have been gold, a bed time story read to him while Val called herself Uncle Arthur or a couple of other things, but it came up with sex). He took her into another empty cell for some privacy where she suddenly turned on him and clubbed him into unconsciousness. Taking his keys and Zagan, the pair of them snuck down the corridor. From one room they could hear some other jailers gambling. Opposite from there they found the armoury where their stuff had been placed after being confiscated. As quietly as possible they pilled other suits and armour and what ever else they could find in front of the jailers room to trap them inside and give themselves a bit of an alarm if any of them tried to leave the room.

After exploring the gaol further eventually they found the way out, with only a single guard manning a desk between them and freedom. Val started to sneak up behind him, but his keen ears warned him. He spun around at the same point as Cadmus and Zolis entered looking for their missing companions. Surprised and surrounded Val was quickly able to disable him leaving another guard senseless on the floor. Picking up some hats and cloaks to hide themselves on the way home, they headed back to the Longhouse Tavern to explain what had happened the previous night.

As they headed up to their chambers a young urchin brought a letter addressed to Val and Zagan on very expensive looking paper. Inside was an invite for each of them to a grand ball the next night. Attached was a note and a letter of credit for the women to get themselves suitable dresses and such accoutrements for their outfits as they deemed appropriate. However it also had a warning not to abuse the gift and buy other stuff.

In keeping with their plan after the prison escape to keep a low profile the women immediately went out dress shopping.

If I remember correctly Val ended up with a black lace ensemble with knee high patent leather boots and a matching onyx, diamond and platinum necklace (when I suggested something else I was immediately subjected to a torrent of abuse from Kristi about what kind of gems go with what fabrics and colours). Zagan ended up with something in purple with amethyst and gold. Oh and high heeled boots.

Zagan attempted to pay the head choreographer of a rather upmarket theatre to come and give her and Val some dancing lessons. While he couldn't meet his price, one of the actors turned out to be much more amenable

Next time women go shopping in my game, I am going to let Kristi GM it.

Seriously women, wearing matching outfits DOES NOT give you a bonus to your armour class.

I also really offended them by suggesting clothes shopping for two women could possibly be carried out in 90 minutes. That would be the part though where this is a fantasy game.

Val then rode off on one of the horses to hand in her prize to the local criminal mob. I tried dropping subtle hints to suggest that perhaps going to a thieves guild with a 5,000 gold bounty on her head might not be the best idea, but they went unnoticed. Sure enough as soon as she handed the gem over, she was ambushed and knocked out. She would wake up later in the same cell she was in the previous day, but this time she was stripped naked and manacled up so she was stuck in a fetal position. Despite her best attempts she was unable to get out of her chains. Obviously with one successful escape already the city watch were taking no chances. From her cell, she could here some muffled noises from the corridor outside, then in front of her eyes, the shadows by the door to her cell seemed to gather into one spot and form a solid shape...

Lets leave that for a second and go find out what the rest of the party was doing (ooooh, tension and suspense!).

Since Cadmus had been seen around town with two people who were now wanted fugitives in the city he asked Zolis to go check on the city gates and scope out how easy it would be to slip outside and escape. Alas the city it turns out was in lockdown thanks to the murder of its wealthiest citizen and the escape of his suspected killers. He reported this back to the rest of the group, including poor Sillas who had been doing little other than guarding the money Val had stolen on her first trip to the Pink House. He returned to the Longhouse Tavern and the group began to discuss how to get out the city, and what was taking Val so long?

And speaking of Val...

The shadows coalesced into the shape of a tall thin woman. She whispered through the bars of her cell door "It's her, she is in here. Open the damn door."
As the bar on the outside of the door was removed, the women set to work unlocking the manacles. She then picked the lock of the door where a man stood. They introduced themselves as Aileen and Merric the Talespinner. Val's gear was retrieved and she quickly dressed. Moving over to an outside wall, deep in shadows Aileen grasped the other two and suddenly Val found herself standing on the other side of the wall. They hurriedly escorted her back to the tavern, but didn't really tell her why they had rescued her, just telling her to keep a low profile and they would arrange to get her out the city in a couple of days.

The next day both Val and Zagan spent learning how to waltz under the direction of their rather ebullient actor instructor, then again all in the name of keeping a low profile they decided to attend the largest, grandest ball of the social season.

At the appointed time a very nice looking black coach pulled by six white horses pulled up in front of the inn. Two footmen appeared from the rear of the coach, one holding the door open, the other kneeling down to act as a human footstool for the ladies to step up into the carriage on.

Remember that one of those costumes involved high heeled boots?

I hear some men pay for things like that. Never understood that one myself.

Anyway, with a muffled grunt of pain from the footman they entered the carriage and went off to the ball.

They were driven through the city for ten or fifteen minutes before reaching their destination. Stepping out of the carriage (again on the backs of a footman) they were met by their mysterious host, Sir Geldan. He was a young man, apparently in his early 20s, handsome and powerfully built. He had long dark hair, held back by a silver band with a blue gem in the centre of it. He wore a black outfit, of a silk tunic, velvet trousers and thigh high black leather boots.

Val immediately recognized him as the man who had killed Xzavros.

He extended his arms and invited the women to take an arm each, and then escorted them into a magnificent white palace as the sounds of an orchestra drifted out into the night air. A servant announced them as they entered. Sir Geldan and Zagan took to the dance floor (and found that Geldan had some wandering hands), while Val helped herself to some free food and drink. The food was quite exquisite and she found herself tucking into the very moreish food.

Zagan found Geldan to be a wonderful dancer, although she was unable to quite match his talents and accidentally bumped into another dancer. He immediately turned around and slapped Zagan only for Geldan to push him away and demand a duel for the slight to his guest. Later on that night, another man was to arose Geldan's ire when he accused Val of eating like a pig and similarly being challenged to a duel.

He then apologized to the ladies for the impoliteness of others and sincerely hoped it would not spoil their night. They spent the rest of the night dancing, drinking and engaging in enjoyable conversation. As the end of the night approached he escorted them out to the back lawn where the duel was to take place.

Sir Geldan invited his opponents to select their weapons first, or flee and be known as a coward. The man who had insulted Val decided to take the chance to escape, while the other man still running on anger selected the foil. Geldan then took the epee. The pair took their positions and then the duel began. Geldan quickly took the upper hand opening up numerous wounds on his opponent. Although he took some hits in return, Geldan quickly cut the man to ribbons and left him dead and bleeding on the floor.

Having avenged the honour of his guests, Geldan then offered to take the women back to their lodgings. Or if they wished they could return to his quarters to tend to his wounds and experience a night he promised would be like none other they had ever experienced.

I was somewhat surprised when both Val and Zagan decided to accept. I had been expecting them to say no thank you, and thank him for a wonderful night.

Anyway, the three of them went to his bed chambers and we skipped to the next morning.

Really, there is way too much sex in this game. I need to get them all out in the middle of nowhere adventuring.

The next day they all breakfasted together and Geldan offered to take them back to their rooms. As they left his home however they spotted a Drow reclining catlike on the wall around his house. "Tut tut Sir Geldan, playing with your food again? Why bother when you know you will have to kill them soon."

With a heavy sigh, he introduced the female Drow as Lady Elthaian and replied "I simply sought to give them one night to remember. There is no harm in that."
With a cruel laugh she rolled backwards and dropped out of sight behind the wall. Both ladies turned round questioningly staring at Sir Geldan. He explained to them that he was a somewhat unwilling member of a team of assassins called The Dark Reflection. He was the most junior member of the group and even he was much more powerful than the party. He told them he knew someone was looking to hire them to kill the group but the contract had not yet been finalized. He offered to kill them quickly and painlessly here and now, and warned them that once the contract was accepted their fate would be much worse. Not only would they be killed, but their souls would also be denied entry to the afterlife instead being condemned to eternal torment.

Unsurprisingly his offer was turned down. They all thanked each other for a special night and parted as friends.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on September 25, 2017, 04:30:10 PM
A good session told with novel-esque vividness. You're a fine DM. I think all D&D characters should ask themselves,  WWCD: "What Would Conan Do?" If my D&D-revering friend Rob lived in Scotland he'd never want to leave your house. You'd have to throw him into the street, probably repeatedly.

And now after 9 1/2 hours at work, which included a freak accident and driving someone to the ER, I get to go home.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 26, 2017, 01:27:46 AM
Robert E Howard is actually a pretty big influence on my games (and also why wenches are always available in between adventures I guess). Conan was very much my introduction to the fantasy genre. I also love Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser stories by Fritz Leiber and was quite amused by the attempts of one games master I used to play with who attempted to pass off two of the wizards from those stories as his own creation for his game.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: clockworkcanary on September 26, 2017, 06:19:49 AM
Even though scheduling prevents me from playing lately, I am loving the updates on my fellow adventurers! Ah the trouble they get into without Sillas! (although they'd probably get into similar trouble had he been present anyway lol).

Great stuff. I'm hoping to be able to join in on one of the upcoming games. I will keep you posted with some advanced notice on that.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 26, 2017, 06:25:25 AM
For the moment Sillas is still with the group, earning about 75% of the XPs the rest of the party gets. There is a point in the future where if you can't make it back that I'll have him drop out, but he can always make guest appearances after that.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on September 28, 2017, 01:37:56 PM
So I've been writing an upcoming episode where I am looking to throw a bit of a turn into horror. I want to get an atmosphere of claustraphobia going amongst the group and then hit them with a monster fight. So the situation is, the group for various reasons is underground in a large sewer (big enough to paddle a canoe down) and going deeper. What I have written so far is:

"Be careful of putting your hand near the surface. Believe it or not some creatures actually live down here in this filth. You can't use any naked flames down here, and magic is weaker here than on the surface. Spells may be less powerful than usual or might not work at all."

Make sure you get what order the party is sitting in the boat. It won't matter, but they will wonder why you've asked. With Merrick checking behind the boat regularly, people in the back might get nervous.

'As you start paddling, you can see sometimes the light from the gem grows dimmer as you travel. Occasionally it blinks out completely, or flashes off and on giving you an unsettling strobe effect. Combined with the smell from the flow of effluent your stomach is heaving. Merrick is kneeling at the front of the boat, occasionally looking behind you and says "The sewers join into a cave system beneath the city. I've not been able to fully explore it, but I have found several ways out of the city before.'

At this point have the party make some Spot and Listen checks. There is nothing to see or hear, but it will make them wonder what they aren't seeing and help get them in the right frame of mind. Repeat this occasionally, but not too often.

'After a while the gray brick work gives way to natural brown stone. The roof of the cave is less than a foot over your head, and sometimes you have to duck to avoid hitting a low part of the roof. The unsteady light from Merrick's gem throws crazy shadows on the cave walls when it is lit and when everything goes dark you are all forced to duck into the canoe or risk braining yourself on some rocky outcrop. The caves slowly lead downwards into the bowels of the earth and you can't help thinking of all the people walking around you above and the layer of rock between you and them, or what would happen should it collapse. The air down here feels very cold and if you didn't have to paddle you'd be huddling close for warmth. The canoe keeps bumping off objects in the water. It could be rocks or you don't want to know what could be floating beside you.

Or perhaps its the creatures Merrick mentioned living down here.

Merrick keeps glancing behind the boat and has a slightly nervous air about him.'


If anyone asks why he will reply "I am not sure, but I think something is following us." Follow this up with more Spot and Listen checks. The party will hear all sorts of strange echos in a cave, let their imaginations make of that what they will. "I also have to confess we appear to have drifted into a part of the caves I am not familiar with. I am afraid we are slightly lost."

Give the players a chance to speak up, come up with plans and so on.

'You paddle through narrow caves and giant caverns. You have no idea how long you've been travelling for down here, far from the sunlight. The light still flickers as if struggling against the enveloping darkness, sometimes it fails and you are plunged into complete darkness.'

Merrick will not allow anyone to light a non magical light. If they do, throw a methane explosion into the mix. 3d6 damage (Reflex save for half) should discourage them from this course of action. The inconsistant light is going to be handy shortly.

'You are constantly aware of the thousands of tons of rock over your head. Should it give way, you would all be crushed flat with no hope of rescue and no chance of anyone ever finding your broken bodies. Once more the light dims and dies, just as you enter a wider cavern where the water flows faster through. You feel the boat picking up speed and the occasional flash of light shows the cave walls rushing past at a dizzying speed. The stench from the sewer has faded somewhat as the sewer mixes with fresh water off the mountains. Merrick calls out "Keep the paddles out the water and your hands inside the boat!"'

Anyone not pulling their paddle in will find it get smashed by a passing rocky outcrop. Anyone with their hand outside the boat can have that hit. Give them d6 damage and a +2 penalty to anything involving using that arm for the next day or two.

You must be passing through another dead magic area, the light is still completely gone. You have no idea how large or small the tunnel is, and thoughts of plunging over an unseen waterfall keep playing in your head.

Well maybe not Zolis's head. Who the hell knows what is going on in his mind?

Suddenly you find yourself flying through the air as the boat hits something in the dark. You are catapulted out of your seat and find yourself thrown into the ice cold water. Luckily it is only a couple of feet deep and you soon hit the bottom. Splashing and struggling, you all make it back to the surface, coughing and spluttering as you try to spit out the water and take a deep breath at the same time.

A shockingly loud scream rends the darkness. You cannot tell who is making it. It starts off as a shout of pain, but increases in pitch and intensity like nothing you have ever heard before, and then breaks into a liquid gurgling. Just as that second the gem flashes for a second briefly illuminating the area.

For a moment your brain struggles to make sense of what it is seeing. It looks like Merrick is lying on some large triangular pink bed, then just as it goes dark, you realise it is actually a massive reptillian jaw studded with stubby but wickedly pointed teeth. As the light blinks out you see the upper jaw coming down, half Merricks body inside the large triangular mouth, half outside. He seems to be stuck, impailed on the teeth beneath him. His left arm has been torn off at the shoulder while he feebly stabs with his dagger in his right. As the light flashes on and off you see a kalidoscope of images as the creature bites down on him, shakes its head from side to side as if trying to tear the body to pieces. When its head hits the side of the passage you can feel the walls tremble with the force of the impact. With a final bite and shake his body is ripped in twain, half falling into the bloodied water, the other half down this giant creatures gullet.'


Anyway, if anyone has some good suggestions for how to build the tension a bit more feel free to mention them. Just remember that every couple of minutes the players have to get a chance to give some input, so I can't do a Stephen King novel length of a build up to the scene.

And I guess at the end of this scene the party might still have their paddles, but they are otherwise currently up s**t creek without a boat.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on September 29, 2017, 07:41:16 PM
Actually, that's pretty good, man.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 01, 2017, 04:16:28 PM
Part Eight Of The Ballad Of The Band Of The Icky Hand: Its Time To Split.

Something very bad happened to one of the characters tonight. I am now in deep trouble. Read on to find out more...

The group all met up in the tavern following their previous nights adventures. They took a table together to swap stories and Val went up to buy a round. On the way back however, she bumped into another patron and a fight broke out. The man who had ale spilled down him turned out to be a surprisingly competent unarmed fighter and pummelled Val into unconsciousness. Another man joined in and a general melee exploded in the bar. Innocent people were running about trying to get away from the fight. Few of the group were equipped for combat, and most of them figured out that using weapons or spells would be a bad idea in a bar fight.

Hell, even Zolis figured out that using big flashy spells would be a bad idea.

Anyway, Val was beaten into unconsciousness in rapid order. Cadmus decided to drop a Sonic Bang spell right in the middle of the fight. This would potentially hit all the combatants including her own allies. Oh, and a lot of normal people. Normal people tend to be squishy and not have a lot of hit points and rapidly died from the sonic damage. As this happened someone else stabbed one of the patrons in the neck with a dagger. They fell to the ground dead.

Now, this was the bit that was supposed to happen. Someone had hired some thugs to start a fight and then kill a bystander and have some false witnesses point the figure at the party.

The thought that the party would actually go kill some innocent people anyway hadn't really occurred to me. Even though this is something that players do regularly. I certainly didn't expect Kristi to be the one who did it. When I pointed out to her she'd killed innocent people her characters reaction was to shrug his shoulders and offer to kill the unconscious Val to prevent them having to carry her body around. When she finally went to cast a healing spell on Val. He reached deep to summon the holy power and... nothing happened. Lathander had withdrawn his favour from him. At this point Cadmus started regretting the deaths. This isn't the bad thing I mentioned at the start. I am in waaaaaaaaay more trouble than that.

They heard a shout the city watch were on their way and fled out into the city, bearing in mind some of the party has a rather significant bounty on their heads. The group then headed for the Temple of Lathander to seek refuge there and speak to the First Dawnbringer. Most of the party decided to wait in the main hall of the temple while Cadmus went upstairs. The door to the First Dawnbringers room was lying slightly ajar. She knocked on it, but go not answer. She peaked around the door and saw Maleon lying on the floor, a goblet of water spilled on the floor beside him.

Well he did say someone was trying to poison him.

In a panic Cadmus ran back downstairs and asked the rest of the party to come upstairs. Everyone but Val on seeing Cadmus's shocked face went upstairs and they asked some acolytes to accompany them. Everyone was shocked to see the old man dead on the floor and again the watch was summoned. The group was planning on hanging around to make sure the watch knew they weren't responsible. Then it occured to them that having a cleric who had just lost his godly powers and was somehow involved in the murder of the leading cleric of that god in the city would not look good. Plus that half the group was wanted already for murder, robbery, escaping prison and so on. At that point they decided to flee in the confusion. This also isn't the bad thing.

Everyone ran and hid in a quiet area of the city. Zolis was able to summon an extra dimensional space for the party to hide in for a few hours and make some plans. It was decided that Val would sneak back to the Longhouse Tavern, and retreive their gear. The rest of the party was to lurk in a nearby quiet alleyway until she returned.

Val, her hair dyed from the previous adventure and hiding in her hooded cloak snuck her way through the city back to the tavern and saw Bran hanging about outside. He told her that the watch had arrested everyone still inside and closed the inn while they investigated the killings. She returned to the group with Bran and the cart (the group also figured out that they had lost the horse Val rode to her meeting with the thieves guild.

The group still wanted to some how meet up with the people who had promised to get them out the city, but wanted to remain hidden. This caused some confusion and debate within the group until Cadmus pointed out if the inn was closed for business they could all hole up there and meet the mysterious pair later.

To be continued (I need to go to bed and will write more tomorrow).


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 02, 2017, 01:08:40 PM
So Val returned to the group Bran and cart in tow. The cart was too wide to get down the alley way and so Bran waited with it while the group debated which plan of action to follow.

Their endless debating was however cut short when they heard shouting at the end of the street. The watch was now conducting a house to house search and it would not take a genius to figure out who they were looking for. Bran turned the cart around and the party jumped on the back and fled the area. Avoiding patrols of guards they made it back to the Longhouse and hid around the back in the stables. Val climbed up to the stable roof, jimmied open a window and slipped inside. The rest of the group then followed her up and closed the window behind them. They gathered up their gear and lowered most of it down to the waiting cart and then sat down to await rescue. Or capture once the watch got around to rechecking this area.

Val was elected to go check the downstairs and make sure no members of staff we still around. From the top of the stairs she could see a flickering light, but not its source so tentatively she crept down the wooden staircase to the main room of the inn. Sitting at a table were the pair who had rescued her from gaol (the second time). The man was dressed somewhat outlandishly with a shiny waistcoat, bright green trousers and deep purple leather boots and a scarlet cloak, while the woman was dressed in drab grey clothing and kept her hair in front of her face. When she looked in Val’s direction her eyes didn't seem to actually look at her instead staring at the ground at her feet.

The pair stood up and moved over to join Val. Meanwhile the rest of the party still hiding in one of the inn's upper rooms. A loud crack sounded against the room window, then a second. Glancing out Zagan could see Bran waving his arms and throwing stones at the window to attract their attention.

It then took a ten minute debate for the group to decide to open a window and find out why Bran was being so animated. He shouted up that the city watch had blocked off all the streets leading away from the inn and were advancing towards it. The party had neatly walked into a trap! Cursing the parties inability to follow the simple instruction to keep their heads down, Merrick told Aileen to take anyone who escape via the roof with her while the rest would have to take a chance of the sewers.

Aileen climbed out the open window immediately, followed by Val who was the only one who could realistically take that route. The rest of the party is either somewhat athletic (Zolis) or clad in heavy armour (Zagan and Cadmus). The pair got onto the roof, but were spotted by some of the watchmen and came under a hail of crossbow fire. Most of the bolts ricochet off the wall, but a couple of lucky shots caused minor injuries to Val. She followed Aileen as she leapt from building to building over narrow streets and alleyways while down below a couple of squads of watchmen tried to shoot them down. They'd made jumps over several narrow alleyways, but when it came to making it over a wide street Val managed to get about half way but crashed hard down on the cobblestones. Bruised and bleeding but with nothing broken she managed to climb back up a drain pipe. Aileen was waiting in the nook between a tall chimney stack and a the sloping room they were on and covered the pair of them with her cloak. The pair hid while their pursuers caught up with them then spread out in different directions trying to find them. Eventually ten or fiveteen minutes later they moved off again, confident they had done all they could to give the slower members of the group a chance to escape. At a slightly more cautious pace the duo made their day to a house that was only a few feet from the top of the city wall. Grabbing Val by the hand Aileen used her abilities to teleport the pair a few feet and onto the wall rather than risk Val falling and taking more damage. (Aileen is a Tiefling which is someone who is half human half demon. They are not always evil although most are, but they do have a connection to the darkness. She is also a Shadow Dancer and able to teleport short distances from shadow to shadow).

And back to the rest of the team...

Merrick took the party down into the cellar and motioned everyone to be very quiet. They could hear the door to the inn being kicked open and many heavy feet running in above their heads. Motioning everyone to be as quiet as possible Merrick got Zagan to help with lifting a heavy manhole cover off the ground. The team dropped down the hole, although the rest of the team got a soft landing when Cadmus messed up his drop and ended up face planting into a stream of fresh sewage. Merrick came through last dragging the grill back into place as quietly as possible. It wouldn't stop the guards from figuring out how they had escaped but it might mean it took them longer to work it out.

With little idea where they were heading they had to follow Merrick trying not to breath in the smell from the sewer. Or the smell from Cadmus who was going to require a bath before meeting polite company.

As it turned out later, this would not be an issue. But this still wasn't what got me into trouble with Kristi. Yup, something worse than going head first into sewage awaited.

Merrick warned the group that magic would be weak down here and that lighting any flames could result in an explosion. They climbed into a canoe he had got down here earlier for the group to escape in. Any guards following them would never be able to catch them on foot.

A scary boat ride then followed where sometimes the light failed completely leaving them in Stygian darkness. If you want more details just read the post above. Right down to the point where they crashed into something in the dark and Merrick was bitten in twain by a giant albino crocodile. Or possibly alligator. Certainly one of them.

Cadmus and Zagan ran forward to fight the beast, although Zagan had trouble swinging his huge two handed sword in tight quarters, Zolis decided to run away and observe the fight from a distance while Sillas picked himself up out of the water.

Here is where it all went wrong though and I got into trouble.

The beast lunged forward and caught Cadmus, his upper half completely inside its jaws while his legs kicked and struggled. It bit down hard and shook its head from side to side. Cadmus’s top half slid down its throat, while the legs spraying blood everywhere fell to the ground.

(In game terms the alligator had scored a critical hit which means its damage was doubled. It caused 32 damage in total which was more than enough to take Cadmus from fully healthy to very dead at -14 hit points).

I got a very unimpressed look from the other side of the table. Me then interrupting the game to say I was in trouble because my wife was a bag of raging hormones at the moment did not help the situation as much as I might have hoped. In fact if anything Kristi seemed more upset by this than by Cadmus dying. *shrugs* Women, who can understand them? Anyway, back to the game. I'll buy her something pink and sparkly and all will be well.

And I will be surprised if ER didn't face palm when she read that last paragraph. :P

Still hungry the beast lunged at Sillas and fixated on him, determined to make him its next meal. Both Sillas and Zagan had inflicted several telling blows on their adversary, but it was still in the fight. It feinted an attack at Zagan and when Sillas ran in to try help protect him with his shield the jaws suddenly snapped back at their real target. Grabbing Sillas by his shield arm it damn near ripped his arm entirely out of his socket. Sillas collapsed from shock and loss of blood. Disaster then struck when Zagan lost his sword, getting it stuck in the ‘gators thick hide. Zolis watching the fight from a distance decided he had to risk something and cast scorching ray at it. While normally this would send a deadly streak of fire to engulf its target, instead there was a bit more of a coughing splurt as the weak magical field here turned the fireball into a few sparks which did some damage, but didn't kill the creature (actually it took it down to having just 1 hit point left). However something else also happened. Having forgotten or ignored Merrick’s warning about naked flames the cave was suddenly filled with a fiery blast as the methane in the air ignited. Zagan was able to dive under water and avoid the worst of the damage and Sillas was already under the water’s surface thanks to his heavy armour dragging him down, but both Zolis and the Alligator took the full blast. Zolis was somewhat scorched by this, but the fireball was enough to finish off the mighty Alligator.

Cutting the creature open they retrieved as much of their friends (read they looted the bodies) as they could. None of them however had the power to bring them back from the dead, nor could they bury them by digging into the hard rock, so the bodies were left lying there. Although I guess both Merrick and Cadmus do get to rest in pieces (too soon?). Sillas was pulled up from under the water and given one of the few remaining healing potions, which was enough to save his arm and bring him back to consciousness.

The boat was found and inspected. Although slightly bashed and dented it was still seaworthy, so they group dragged it over the dead ‘gator. To the rear of it seemed to be the beast lair. Multiple carcasses lay around the room and after digging through them (seriously this party loves to smell like dead things) they found a clutch of half a dozen eggs which they decided to take with them.

Putting two and two together the group figured out that this meant somewhere out there was another one of these creatures, it was time to get the hell out of there. Of course they might have a p**sed off mama alligator following them when she returns and finds her mate dead and her kids stolen.

 
Ever watched Taken? Now imagine that with a 30 foot long Alligator in the role of Liam Neeson. That’s a film I want to see!

 
Continuing along in the boat, lighter by two people the party travelled for several more hours until they reached a point where it could take them no further. The water dropped through a hole in the cave perhaps a foot across. One side of the cave did however have a steeply sloping upwards passage. They’d have to go up it crawling due to the steep angle, but it was either that or drop down the hole into the unknown.

Well unknown to them. I knew damn fine well it was a mile and a half drop down to a large underground sea filled with monsters. If they’d went down that way Val would have been looking for an entirely new group to adventure with.

Anyway, after an exhausting climb they finally started to see a pinprick of light up ahead. It took many more hours of climbing that left them fatigued before finally they crawled out of the dark, dank earth and into the sweet embrace of sunlight. To the north-west they could see a many miles distant which they guessed would be Teziir. Running to the east of that was the road that hopefully Val and Aileen would be waiting to meet them on. And if possible Bran since all the party treasure was loaded onto the wagon.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: clockworkcanary on October 02, 2017, 01:41:15 PM
Oh no! Cadmus!!!!!

Exciting read!


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 02, 2017, 01:58:34 PM
So, after eight sessions and our first casualty how do things stand?

Well, the group still isn't sharing information. Indeed Cadmus dying means the rest of the group will get no advance warning that at some point in the future Father Morgan is going to be coming after them with a horde of the undead at his command. Kristi is liking playing a cleric and is going to roll a new one. She is looking at what god to follow this time. Perhaps she'll try an evil god.

Val has met a Shadow Dancer and has a couple of days to walk to the next city so she has a chance to ask about becoming one herself. Zolis is about to get a chance to learn about the prestige class he wants to follow. Since he didn't buy the book the Red Wizard tried to sell him that would have got him on the path to being an archmage. I figured he can pretty much sell his soul next time.

Need the party to decide what they are doing next though. I figure they will all be heading to Eversult and should meet up there and then after that we shall have to see.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 02, 2017, 02:00:04 PM
Oh no! Cadmus!!!!!

Exciting read!

Yup, your favourite neighbourhood healing machine is now out of order. Permanently.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on October 02, 2017, 04:52:22 PM
Oh no! Cadmus!!!!!

Exciting read!

Yup, your favourite neighbourhood healing machine is now out of order. Permanently.

It'd be a good time for his previously unknown identical twin brother Sumdac to make an appearance. You know, like Laura Palmer's cousin, or etc.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 03, 2017, 02:02:30 PM
Gave Zolis a short solo session tonight. After climbing out of the tunnel he was exhausted. A rude camp was set up and he collapsed into the arms of sleep and started to dream...

You lie down, your exhausted body demanding rest and sink into a dream. In that dream you see the world. Armies match, dragons and other monsters attack towns and cities. Nations rise and fall. And all through it innocents suffer and die needlessly. You see yourself standing in the middle of it, growing more and more powerful amidst the chaos and using your power to bring peace and stability to all. All manner of evil creatures flee your approach or are burned to cinders at a snap of your fingers. As you travel solving the world’s problems and disasters one by one people come to respect and love you and yes even come to worship you.

The more powerful you become the wider your influence grows. Kings and Emperors seek you out to ask your advice at first, but on meeting you and hearing your wisdom and intellect they grovel at your feet and beg you to take their crowns. Eventually you approach the power of the gods themselves, perhaps one day you can supass even them and challenge Lord Ao himself and put the universe to rights. With the power of magic at your control anything is possible.

A faint voice speaks to you as if from ages past, barely hearable “This is your future, your destiny. If you decide to take it. If you but have the strength of mind and will to take what is yours. I am but once piece of the broken god, seek out others and take their power. Become what you were born to be!"

Zolis started asking questions like who are you? And where am I?

I am part of you now, I am you and I am in your head, I know your innermost secrets and desires. I can put you on the path to what you seek most of all if you wish. No cost… no hidden soul to sell. My voice speaks to you, tells you to go north and seek other shards of my power, claim them for your own and become all powerful.

Although he had some doubts, Zolis's interest had definitely been pricked. He asked if his friends wouldn't object and perhaps try to stop him and was told that the last one to attempt to gain this power for himself had been betrayed by his friends who had ripped his soul into pieces to stop him. But Zolis could be more careful, he could succeed where others had failed.

He accepted the voices offer of power and slept the rest of the night peacefully. When he awoke he felt refreshed and the aches and pains of the night before had disappeared.

In his arms he was holding a large leather bound book. It did not appear to be bound in human flesh, inked in blood or any of the other things you would associate with evil tomes. He sent out his magical senses to probe the book and found while it had been handled by creatures with magical abilities, it was not inherantly magical itself. Studying the pages, he found it was all about the theory and practise of magic, although much more in depth than anything he had hitharo came across. Imagine Issac Newton finding a book on Quantum Physics. He decided to hide this from the rest of the party and study it in private.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 05, 2017, 01:18:33 PM
I have made a little bit of a mistake. Normally when I write an adventure it is only a week or so in advance, but I have the next few sessions in mind and where to go with them. Thing is when I wrote the group splitting I liked the idea of one group going over the roofs while another went through the sewer.

Trouble is that I never thought about how to get them back together. I could just have "Yeah, you walk along the road and see your friends", but that would be a bit dissatisfying for me and no doubt the group too.

I could just leave it to the players. They will either do something thats total genius or absolutely idiotic. Players tend not to be capable of doing anything in between.

Hmm, reminds me of the time an ex sent an email to me calling me an idiot. Only she managed to spell it idot. Or maybe she meant to call me an idot, who knows? Assuming it was a spelling mistake though, if you are going to call someone an idiot you really should spell it correctly. Or at least use a spell checker. Had a conversation with a female friend. We ended up comparing who had, had the most partners from the most different countries.

Anyway, I am wandering off topic there. I have come up with a place for the group to meet up, but that relies on them doing more or less what I expect them to do. Any GM has to be able to think on his feet and adopt whatever situation he has created to fit in with what the party actually do.

Plus I need to write Kristi's new character in. Glad I am not doing an adventure set down in the underdark or something. Adding new people there is a bit more problematic.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 08, 2017, 10:36:14 AM
Ok, so tonights adventure is partially written. I know what the situation is going to be. How the party finds each other and how they interact with everything... well that I am a little more unsure of. Be interesting to see how it goes. Wish me luck.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 08, 2017, 05:32:15 PM
Part Nine Of The Tale Of The Band Of The Icky Hand

Seriously I thought the group would have came up with their own name by now.

So Zolis, Sillas and Zagan rested at the mouth of the cave they'd just escaped from. It was late afternoon and just setting up a rude camp seemed like a major task, but they managed it and fell into a deep sleep. Zolis had the dream mentioned above and made his pact with the strange voice in his head. The others rested and regained some much needed hit points. The next day they set off on the full days march required to bring them to the road between Teziir and Eversult. Leaving no guard, the group could have ended up as a random snack for any passing creature, but got lucky and everyone got to wake up alive (in this game you can actually wake up dead. Go TEAM NECROMANCER!).

Val and Aileen in the meanwhile trudged along the road on foot, wondering if Bran would be able to get out the city or not and hoping he'd pick them up in the wagon tomorrow. They decided to sleep some distance from the road where no passers by could see them. Not that many people ride in the dark, but you just never know. They too rested for the night.

In the morning the rogues continued walking along. A could of dust on the road behind them did indeed turn out to be Bran. The city had been unsealed and he'd gotten out.

Of course since no one asked him why the gates had been unlocked he didn't bother to tell them about the dispatch riders carrying wanted posters featuring descriptions of the group travelling in all directions. Or about the increased bounty on their heads.

The others could see a village in the distance, its white painted wooden pallisade shining brightly in the morning sun and decided to head for it. This would take them until some time in the afternoon. The circled around it from a distance and approached it from the main road (which was about a thirty minute walk from the outside of the village). The wall around the village was roughly circular and they saw gates on the southern and eastern sides (they didn't however go around the entire wall, just around half). About half a mile away they could see people working in a field, but they were too far away to make out any details. Zagan rapped on the door with the pomel of his greatsword, and a few seconds later a unshaven and rather dirty looking mans head popped over the top of the parapet and asked them what they wanted. After they said they just wanted to rest up for the night. The gate was dragged open and they found themselves being watched very closely by half a dozen men in armour all pointing an assortment of missile weapons in their vague direction. They were given directions to the inn, which was named "The Slaughtered Goat" (I was hoping someone would make a connection there and expect a werewolf, but no such luck. I oculd have called it The Slaughtered Lamb, but I thought that would be too obvious). The men all bore the same device on their armour and shields, a spear tip with a white circle and a scrawled 'Z'. Zolis recognised what this meant, but decided to wait before telling anyone else. The inn stood on the north side of a sideways T junction. The road they walked in went east - west and stopped at the junction, while the other road ran from the north to the south. The inn was at the corner on the north side and the group wandered in. It was a single story building. Inside 5 unkempt looking men sat drinking at a table. A harrassed looking woman in her fourties along with a young teenage girl which the group assumed to be her daughter stood behind the bar serving drinks.

Taking a table as far away from the men as possible, Zagan went up to ask about rooms for the night as well as food and drinks. Unfortunately there were no rooms at the inn, but for a couple of coppers she'd let them either sleep on the floor in the inn or they could sleep out in the barn. She would also throw in some hot food and cold drinks.

And that is all for the moment, I'll write up the rest of the adventure tomorrow.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 09, 2017, 01:40:57 AM
The three in the inn talked quietly. Zolis explained that the device painted on their shields was an old sign used by a group called the Zhentarim who are a group seeking to spread the tyranny of the evil god Bane (pretty much the patron god of fascism), although some do follow the Cyric the god of lies. Over the past few years they have been expanding across the region as merchants, often using underhanded techniques to dominate the trade of an area, backed by their military might. The southern coast is not their usual territory so this could be part of an attempt to expand their influence or perhaps just a renegade band. The group definitely got the impression that something wasn't quite right in the village. The civilians seemed very uneasy and when they'd walked through the village they had saw only women. It was agreed that Zolis would go outside and send a note with his raven to find the others and warn them about the village.

Extra information was then passed on when Zagan said that he thought Val would be smarter than to bring the cart inside the town. This cost him a fine in XP's for metagaming, it also cost Tina some XPs for acting on that information, but her wasn't as large as Zagans. Bit of a shame as otherwise it was a night of good roleplaying.

About while this was going on the others travelling along the road at the only speed Bran understands had also arrived at the southern gate. They got about the same level of welcome as the others had at the eastern gate, but without the crowd of soldiers pointing bows and crossbows at them. They left Aileen and Bran with the wagon outside (which I figured would actually attract more attention than bringing it inside, and if the party spend a night in the village it would be sure to be investigated).



Val entered the room and saw her companions sitting in the corner. Stories were exchanged and the news of Cadmus and Merrick's deaths were shared, although no one thought to go and let Aileen know about that. Zolis's raven returned to him before he even got back to the inn having dropped off his message to Val while she was at the front gate.

Once Zolis rejoined the group talk soon very quietly turned to forming some sort of insurrection against the guards that seemed to be in control of the town. While they were talking a rather short young woman wearing very light armour and festooned with weapons. Looking around she could see the guards and the party. Deciding the party looked the more companionable types she decided to ask if she could join them (this is Kristi's new character).

Zagan decided to try and pump the barmaid for information and took a note asking her if the people in the village were in some kind of trouble or danger and slipped this to her unnoticed by the soldiers while he went up and asked about a bath. She took the note, tucked it in her apron and led her to the bath house. And when I say house, I mean a large tin bath out in the back courtyard which was then filled with hot water from a wood burning stove. Zagan stripped off and had the first bath of the campaign (I must go through this and work out how many days have passed in game time at some point. Its going to be important when the next big event kicks off in a later session).

The newcomer introduced herself as Colesta, who luckily happened to be a wandering follower of the goddess of magic Mystra. As the group were chatting, the men in the corner decided to make a move on the ladies in the group. Afterall the only man they had to protect them looked like he weighed maybe 60 pounds if he was soaking wet. The largest of the group sauntered cockily over and asked why such a little woman had so many big weapons. Colesta did not respond well to his advances, especially when he smiled and revealed the few teeth he had remains were broken and brown stained. He grabbed Colesta, attempting to force a kiss on her. Val threw a dagger at the mans head, but in such a way that the hilt would hit him rather than the blade.

Slightly stunned, the man staggered backwards, his friends though pulled him back and prevented a fight breaking out... for the moment. His forehead was bruised and bleeding where he'd been hit. He continued to stare daggers at them for the rest of the night though. Eventually another five guards joined them and a few farmers came in from the fields. The men seemed tired and half starved. Few had more than a drink or two before going home. During the night the barmaid managed to slip the note back to Zagan. Reading it back at the table it simply said "Come find me once everyone has left."

Once it got dark Val slipped out the door, but not unnoticed. The bruised man and two of his friends got up to follow her outside. Val unaware of this had slipped into the shadows and was heading off towards the southern gate. The men staggered outside, cursing when they couldn't see her around. Zolis and co had observed this however and were ready to run outside if a fight started.

I am not convinced they planned on helping out. I suspect they just wanted to watch.

The men were staggering around when a deep voice roared at them asking what the hell they were doing. They sheepishly muttered something and went back into the bar followed by whoever had been shouting. This turned out to be a giant of a man, he looked like a slap of muscle with extra muscles on top. A much thinner man accompanied him, he had a touch of the elvish around his ears. The pair stayed at the bar drinking separately from the men.

Val in the meantime reached the southern wall, avoiding the patrol wandering around the streets. Silently climbing over the wall and out of the village she could see the cart just outside the village. Bran had pulled a tarp over the back of it making a cover. Peaking underneath she could see Bran and Aileen sleeping under the cover. Knocking on the wooden side of the cart she woke them up.

Startled by the rapping Aileen jumped up with a start, her eyes flashed a mix of sickly green and black flames for a few seconds, she opened her mouth and hissed, revealing several rows of needle sharp teeth. Realising she wasn't in danger she quickly composed herself, covering her face once more with her face and turned away from Val.

Bran, not having seen this and being his usual pleasant self grunted at Val wanting to know what she wanted. Recovering from her shock Val asked Bran to move the wagon out of sight of the village and be careful. Something was up inside and there might be fighting.

Back in the inn it was getting late. Most of the men had either staggered off or collapsed drunkenly on the floor. The group went out to the stable to wait for a bit, make sure the inn was empty and they could talk to the barmaid. Val made it back to the group during this time, plans were made and she was sent to investigate the inn. She carefully checked the interior from the outside and then went silently into the inn. Some unconscious men lay about the inn, but most had staggered off to wherever they spent their nights. He made his way to the back where he guessed the innkeepers had their own rooms and softly knocked on the door. The barmaid opened it and asked him in. She explained that raiders had started attacking the farmers in the fields and they'd hired some mercenaries to help protect them. So far the raiders hadn't returned and their supposed protectors had taken over the village instead. All the men were forced to work in the fields except for the town mayor who was being kept a prisoner in his own house. She was sure the villagers would stand and fight against the men if someone could lead them, although they'd been given very little food and worked from dawn til dusk in the fields. Zagan promised to sort out something and help liberate them. She also got some supplies to feed the men and give them a bit more strength for the upcoming battle.

Hopefully the party won't decide to then just take the village for themselves and use it as the base to build an empire from.  I mean its normally what my characters do. I mean I've played characters who have cut someones throat rather than pay for a new pair of shoes and whose idea of testing for traps is to push someone else into a room (actually, that was pretty funny).

Anyway, Val dragged sacks of food back to the stable and the more plans were made. The group decided to drag the food out to the wagon, overpower the guards in the fields and then lead the villagers in an uprising.

I was a little surprised they didn't just decide to cut the throats of the drunk men in the inn, take out the security patrol and then go from house to house looking for where the rest were sleeping. Or is it just me that thinks that way?

Sneaking back down to the cart the group was surprised to see no sign of the night guards they'd been told about.

Actually it was a good job Val had told Bran to move further away from the village as the guards had abandoned their post to go see if it held treasure. Although Aileen might have given them a nasty shock. And well, Bran and his boom stick is also quite capable of making a bloody mess.

Eventually they got the food to the cart, then went back to the stable to get some sleep.

The next morning they made a show of leaving the village and heading along the road. Some of the fields ran parallel to the road, maybe fifty feet from the road itself. As they passed the closest guard they opened up with a hail of missile fire and left him dead in the dirt before he even knew he was under attack. There were five guards widely spread out and the party quickly overcame them in a ranged battle. Colesta showed her worth by frying one guy with Magic Missiles while Zolis called a giant bombadier beatle that sprayed enough acid at a guy to melt him and the rest died charging towards the group, or trying to return fire. The fields were too far away from the village for anyone to hear what was happening and no one patrolled the walls anyway, the occupiers not believing a bunch of half starved farmers would be any threat.

They did have plans of sneaking around and taking them out ninja style but the lack of anything other than flat terrain stymied them here, so it ended up a surprise attack and frontal assault.

Although many of the people they had rescued wanted to immediately storm the village, they were persuaded to wait until nightfall when they would all be expected to return anyway, the gates would be opened and they could all run in. The men were to look like they were working in the fields and their strongest men were to don the armour and weapons of the dead guards. Well except for the melted guy. No one wanted to dip into that gooey mess. In the meantime the party cooked up something for the group and took food around the men.

As night started to fall everyone marched back to the village, with a determined purpose that had not been present previously. As they were going through the gates however the guards realised the people in armour were not their companions and battle was quickly joined. As the sounds of battle roused the other mercanaries who ran into battle, one group attacking the villagers in close combat on the main street, and the second group firing a mixture of bows and crossbows at long range. The rebels quickly overran those in melee by sheer weight of numbers killing the minions, however when their leader (Fial) came charging out of the mayors house and started laying into the rebels, cutting down half a dozen with a single wide stroke of his two handed battleaxe, then charging further into them to kill even more. The party had deliberately decided to hang back and let the villagers run into battle. This was going to cost the lifes of a lot of them.

Engaging in another ranged battle with the second group Zagan & Zolis were wearing them down slowly, while the return fire was pretty ineffective. Neither group wanted to charge over the dead group between them though to get to close quarters while being peppered by the other side. Val and Colesta headed down the street to help out the villagers belately. Colesta summoned a mighty giant eagle and sent it to attack the raging barbarian while Val tried to work her way around behind him. Some of the villagers tried to fight back against this whirlwind of razor edged death and even managed some wounds, but he cut them down in return. The townsfolk while certainly not cowards were also not trained for this sort of fight and started to waver and then run.

Kristi at this point told me that if her character died she would burst into tears. She is a cross classed Cleric / Wizard. Clerics can wear heavy armour and have a decent amount of hit points to survive combat. Wizards can't wear heavy armour and have all the hit points of a squished cricket. She has a lot of spells available to her from those two classes but can't wear armour or her Wizard spells have a chance of not working. All this is relevant to what happens next.

Colesta ends up in melee combat going toe to toe with the barbarian along with her giant eagle and Val running up behind him to stab him in the kidneys. He was strong enough to kill Colesta with a single blow. He raised his axe up and brought it down cutting deep into Colesta's side. Blood stained her tunic, and she was near death.

But as any viewer of The Princess Bride knows there is a difference between mostly dead and all dead and Colesta was only mostly dead. The villagers and the Giant Eagle actually took quite a toll from Fial, although his enraged brain did not realise just how close to dying he was, or maybe he just didn't care. The final blow came when Colesta with her last ounce of strength caught him on the side of his head with her mace. His skull caved in and as his brain dribbled out the hole where the side of his head used to be he finally collapsed to the ground dead.

Zagan managed to work his way around behind the remaining defenders dispatching them with a mixture of bow fire and hand to hand combat. One of them fled, getting an arrow in the back as he ran out the gates, but not a fatal blow.

No one could see any sign of Fial's elven eared friend however, but it looked as the village was free!

And at that point since it was pretty late on we decided to call it a night.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 10, 2017, 04:53:59 PM
I swear these things take longer to write every week.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 17, 2017, 02:04:54 PM
Trying to write up the next weeks adventure. Biggest issue I currently have is that I really have no idea what the party is going to do next. They could stay in the village and start a bit of empire building from here (I rate this as the unlikeliest option though as they are a days travel away from a city that has a HUGE bounty posted on the group. This is going to lead to regular visits from bounty hunters and perhaps even some sort of large scale military attack).

They might try and find the Masks that either are back in Karlston or were found by Kano and are whereever he left them, or equally Zolis might persuade everyone to go north and follow the voice in his head telling him to go north. This actually kicks off a major event in the game world and would be good.

This is the options I hope are the ones the party are going to go with.

Of course there are lots of wildcard options. They are near the coast and might decide to take a ship somewhere new where its not quite as hot for them (I do have plans for them spending some time on a boat, but I've not written that up yet). They have made an enemy of one criminal organisation and have interfered with the plans of a much larger group as well as who ever else is after the Mask's.


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: ER on October 17, 2017, 08:58:21 PM
Alex, you might like this guy's site. (Shame he hasn't updated it in five years----hints of a Go Fund Me scandal shutting him down---but the posts he put up for several years before then make great reading.)

http://grognardia.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2012-07-19T11:18:00-04:00&max-results=10&start=90&by-date=false (http://grognardia.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2012-07-19T11:18:00-04:00&max-results=10&start=90&by-date=false)


Title: Re: My D&D campaign
Post by: Dark Alex on October 18, 2017, 12:08:28 PM
Thanks ER, had a quick look at it and will check it out some more when I get back home next week.