Rise of the Runelords

Burn Baby Burn

30 Lamashan 4707

The next morning, the PCs re-enter the Graul house. They find more deformed children, many more traps, and a creature in the basement known as a tendriculous – a feral animated plant that eats creatures. Although it must have been malnourished as it failed to connected with any of its targets.

They leave the house having retrieved a large number of items of masterwork and magical weapons and armour and make a brief detour back to the barn resulting in the death of the spider and then they burn down the farmhouse and the barn.

After this they question the rescued people.

It transpires that all three are Black Arrows from Fort Rannick.

  • Jakardos – the second in command of the Fort and an old flame of Shalelu
  • Orik – Who the party previously arrested in the employ of Nualia
  • Kaven – A resident of Turtleback Ferry that had joined the Black Arrows

Jakardos had taken a sizeable patrol to the west to investigate a sighting of ogres by Kaven. This had turned out to be a wild goosechase – none were to be seen. They had returned to the Fort to find it overrun by ogres. An attempt to retake the fort had failed and the remains of the force had fled into the woods only to be taken by the Grauls. During the discussion, Kaven makes a number of comments that raise suspicions and under interrogation he finally admits to having been a customer of the Paradise barge and to having fallen under the influence of Lucrecia.

Under her orders he had arranged for a large patrol to be diverted away from the Fort at the same time that the Commander of the Fort – Lamatar Bayden – was away. This meant that the Fort was undermanned and also missing its two most senior commanders.

The Commander, Lamatar, was missing on one of his regular sojourns. He used to go away every full moon. Kaven had followed once to find him heading to the Shimmerglens.

Upon hearing of the betrayal, Jakardos flies into a rage and attempts to kill Kaven. Rena prevents this from happening as she has a strong sense of redemption.

They return back to the village to recuperate and make plans to retake the fort.

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Last house on the Left

29 Lamashan 4707

The next morning, Mayor Maelin Shreed comes back to the inn to talk to the PCs. He asks for more details of what was happening on the barge. He expresses concern due to the incessant rain, the lack of visits from any Black Arrows in recent days and the rumours that are flying around town about strange things in the woods – displaced animals, hunters going missing and strange comings and goings on the Shimmerglens.

  • Hunters have reported an upturn in wild animal attacks in the Kreegwood near the town. Normally these creatures reside deeper in the wood.
  • In the past two weeks, a few hunters have gone missing. These were experienced guys that hunted deeper in the Kreegwood, mainly for pelts.
  • Only 2 days ago, a hunter reported a strange event, where a firepelt cougar approached him, ran around his legs and then trotted off back towards where it came from. It repeated this several times, while making high pitched yowls and trills. Eventually the hunter ran off.
  • There was a sighting of a group of ogres moving through the forest and crossing over to the Shimmerglens just over a week ago. Later that same night they returned. One of them was carrying a body.

He asks what their plans are and if there is anything he can do to help them. Will they check in at Fort Rannick.

During the conversation, Tilla Henkenson interrupts. She’s sat at another table having breakfast as she does every day before school. “While you’re at it, can you find out why the Skull River is running low?” This provokes a debate between the Mayor and Tilla about priorities. Her reasoning is that with the level of rain over the last few weeks, the river should be running high not low. In the end the Mayor will ask if they have time to look into it as well. Shalelu is keen to get to Fort Rannick as well, she wants to find out what has happened to the Black Arrows.

The party moves off to head toward the Fort. On the journey, they can see that the river is clearly low despite the rain, but the cause of this is not immediately apparent.

Soon they reach a bridge crossing the Skull River. As they cross, Tig hears the sound of a animal in pain. Tig, Stig and Samoth head into the woods to investigate while the rest of the party wait with the horses.

They reach a clearing to find a firepelt cougar trapped in a bear trap. Freeing the cougar and healing it, they are surprised to see it apparently attempting to get them to follow it.

Soon though, they hear the sound of loud aggressive barking. Bastarj is sent to fetch the rest of the party while Samoth flies ahead to investigate. He finds the source of the barking is 5 large aggressive hounds. He also hears a gruff voice singing about hunting cats. And moves off to find out where it comes from.

The party defends the cougar from the hunting dogs while Samoth encounters a deformed ogrekin and traps him in a pit. After some fruitless attempts to question it, the party gathers around the creature and as it emerges from the pit Stig charms it.

The creature tells them of his family headed by Mammy, who has lots of sons, with a somewhat confusing family tree. They ask the creature, named Rukus, to take them to his family and follow him for approximately a mile through the forest, avoiding traps along the way.

Rukus leads them to an overgrown path cut through a particularly heavy thicket of bushes and trees. Crude fetishes made from bone, twig and skin dangle from branches around the entrance.

They progress halfway up the path when Rukus detours into the woods and starts to move through them. passage is particularly slow, so Stig decides to continue up the path, only to trigger a pit trap, but he successfully jumps to safety. At the bottom of the pit are lots of sharpened stakes, and caught in them are the bodies of 3 men bloated with putrefying gasses. One of the bodies bursts open as the pit cover lands on it, releasing hundreds of flies.

They eventually emerge from the path into a large clearing containing a decrepit farm, with ramshackle buildings and a field of diseased rotting corn. As they pass by the corn heading to the farm buildings, a figure darts out from behind them striking Tig heavily with a wicked looking hooked weapon. Tig is struck several more times before people react and falls unconscious. The figure tries to dart back into the corn to hide but Kaz sets the field alight.

Rukus begs his new friends and his brother to stop fighting, so Stig tells him to run back to his house. The rest of the party surround the tall malformed figure and kill him. It is another ogrekin half-breed.

The group progress up to the barn and farmhouse. The firstly check the barn and are set upon by 3 more ogrekin sporting further deformities, but these prove to be little trouble. The rear of the barn is heavily boarded up but they spot two doors on an upper balcony. Behind these is a large room filled with webs, with two cages in the corners. The cages contain 3 men who are unconscious.

The men are rescued just in time as an enormous spider emerges from the lower reaches of the web and attacks them. They bring the men out to the clearing where Shalelu is waiting and to their surprise she recognises one of them as the second in command of the Fort. They stabilise the mend and decide to check the farmhouse.

Tig scouts the entrance where a door stands ajar. She touches the door and a trap is triggered causing spikes spring out and stab her. Razor sharp saw blades spring up from the floor, but she evades them.

Entering the house she finds more traps and decides to fetch the rest of the group, warning them to take care. The enter and as the explore they meet Mammay Graul. She is a corpulently obese ogrekin, that has learnt the foul art of necromancy, reanimating the corpses of her dead lovers and sons.

The battle is made easier by clever thinking by Samoth who uses a stinking cloud to incapacitate her and Rukus who is now aiding her. Cornered she dimension doors away, but is spotted by Shalelu who alerts the PCs and they rush out to finish the fight. Eventually she is despatched and the party decided to rest for the night

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If Paradise is half as nice..

28 Lamashan 4707

The party has spent the evening in the inn in Pendaka and departs for the final stage of the trip. They found that it has been raining non-stop for several weeks, and as they leave the inn they cannot fail to notice the suspicious dark clouds to the north over the mountains.

Arriving in Turtleback Ferry just after midday, they visit the Turtleback Parlour, the town inn. They find out that business has been slow due to townsfolk using the Paradise as their evening haunt. In addition the incessant rain has dampened people’s desire to go out at night.

The innkeeper also mentions that the Black Arrows have not been seen in town for over a week.

The party decide to get on the Paradise barge that evening, and while they wait Samoth explores the rest of the town and spots some more townsfolk with tattoos.

As early evening arrives, the barge starts to move towards a jetty where a number of townsfolk have gathered. The party take some care to disguise their weapons and board the boat.

Lucrecia is moving around the boat greeting customers, and when she finally greets the party members they become suspicious of the extra attention she appears to give Tig and Kaz, staring at their chests where their Sihedron Medallions rest.

Most of the party take their time to observe the guests, workers and Lucrecia. Samoth decides to use his shift ability to gain entrance to Lucrecia’s quarters. Searching them, he identifies that her bedroom looks unused, but in an office he finds magic inks, and two wands.

A short while later, Lucrecia moves to enter her quarters with a guest. Samoth shifts to the bedroom and watches them through a crack in the wall. She notices the missing ink and working out that her ruse has been rumbled she dimension doors away.

Following this, every door on the boat suddenly slams shut. Then a few seconds later, Lucrecia appears floating above the boat proclaiming that her plans had been disturbed and that she would have to accelerate the timetable. She then fireballs the back of the boat, causing the paddle to explode and water to start rushing in.

The party acts quickly to organise the guests and workers, clearing the path for everyone to escape. As a result of their actions, boats from the town row out to rescue everyone and take them back to the town.

As they head off to the inn to gain some much needed rest, they find out that half of the townsfolk have been given tattoos. They are not sure what purpose of these markings are, perhaps the letter from Xanesha, who is clearly the sister of Lucrecia, will give some clues.

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Legends Retold

22 Lamashan

The party settles in at the Lean-To inn in Wartle. There is a bard, Astari, entertaining the crowd as the party sample the local Bog Grog, finding it to be an extremely potent brew.

The bard tells The Legend of Black Magga, which captures the interest of the inn’s patrons and some of the party members.

As the bard works round the room collecting coins, the party notice that he has a Sihedron tattoo on his wrist. With their suspicions raised, they talk with him, scan him for evil and magic but nothing untoward is noticed.

Eventually they decide to openly question him about it. He explains that he was given the tattoo by a lady named Lucrecia, who runs the Paradise barge in Turtleback Ferry. The Paradise tours around the lake as a floating casino. Astari spent the summer working on the boat entertaining the guests. As a reward for his work, Lucrecia gave him the tattoo to indicate him as a VIP member.

Samoth scans the tattoo and identifies that it has transmutation magic embedded in it, but cannot determine its function. He suggests that Astari has it removed with an erase spell as soon as possible.

The party then rests and the next morning they depart for Turtleback Ferry. The journey takes 3 days.

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Caught in the Act Part 3

22 Lamashan 4707

The party leave the Varisian and head toward the village of Wartle. The weather has taken a nasty turn and it is raining heavily, making for an unpleasant journey.

Late in the afternoon, Tig is the first to hear a scream. The PCs move quickly toward it to discover a family of travellers being attacked by Boggards. The battle is swift and one sided and the family is saved.

They escort the family back to Wartle, which they find to be a ramshackle village built on stilts over an islet in the Yondabakari River.

Passing a group of houses with some unsavoury women offering dubious pleasures, they enter a creaky inn named the Lean-To. A number of sullen patrons are inside, ignoring a shabby looking entertainer telling stories of legend with his son.

The group settles down to get some food and rest…

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Caught in the Act Part 2

21 Lamashan 4707

The next day Shalelu has come to town and gives news of rumours of Giants on the move in the north around Galduria and Wolf’s Ear. When she hears of the upcoming journey, she asks to accompany the party as she has some business she would like to attend to in Turtleback Ferry.

The group leave Sandpoint early in the afternoon, also accompanied by Stig, who has joined the party.

The day passes uneventfully until the evening when they meet a travelling caravan of Varisians who are camped by the roadside. Talking with them, it transpires that one of the Varisians is pregnant and also sick. Rose examines her and finds that she is sick and has contracted a disease. Rena attempts a Lay on Hands, but this is unsuccessful. Rose tends to her overnight and in the morning has done enough to get the mother-to-be on the road to recovery.

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Caught in the Act Part 1

20 Lamashan 4707

Back at the Rusty Dragon, Rose and Samoth are awoken by the noise of people moving about in the corridor. It transpires that Ameiko has put an alarm spell on the Glassworks and that this has been triggered. She’s going over there to investigate.

Samoth wakes Kazallin, and they both fly direct to the Glassworks. Rose starts putting her armour on.

As Ameiko runs through the streets to the Glassworks, she passes Rena. Stig and Tig who follow after her. Kaz and Samoth start to circle around the Glassworks looking for signs of disturbance.

Eventually, Samoth finds an open door and proceeds in. He detects an intruder in a room and locks him down with a Black Tentacles spell before proceeding further in. Kaz enters also and tries to interrogate the intruder trapped by the tentacles. He’s followed by Tig, who is shot by a sniper.

Stig attempts to deal with the sniper but they escape. Samoth and Tig deal with two other burglars. The first intruder manages to escape the tentacles and evades Kaz, but upon running into the rest of the group, he surrenders.

Belor Hemlock and some guards arrive, as does Rose having suited up. The burglars refuse to talk, but they find a note on one of them listing the items to break and steal and telling them to delive them to ‘S’.

Surmising that this means Titus Scarnetti, the party together with Belor and Ameiko head over to Scarnetti mansion. Samoth uses his Hat of Disguise to appear as one of the burglars and enters the mansion. The rest follow on invisible. Samoth is taken to Scarnetti and they start to discuss the burglary. Scarnetti becomes suspicious and gets up to leave at which point the party reveal themselves and confront him over the burglary.

At first Titus denies all involvement, until it is suggested that the evidence gathered would be enough to prompt his cousins in Magnimar to have him replaced. At that point he starts to offer a conciliation to Ameiko. Eventually suitable terms are agreed and the matter is put to bed.

The party return to the inn to rest and be ready for their long journey.

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A Friend In Need Part 4

19-20 Lamashan 4707

The party, Ameiko and the caravan of glassworkers head to Sandpoint. On arrival they discover that the Lonjiku Manor was vandalised in an attempted arson attack. Fortunatley not much damage occurred.

After Rena reunites with her family, she and her brother Stig head to the Fatman’s Feedbag and see Jubrayl there with an associate. After Stig attempts to cast a spell on them, Jubrayl comes out and confronts them. A terse conversation takes place, Jubrayl doesn’t really deny any involvement in the events. Instead he dismisses Rena and Stig’s interest telling them to go back to their side of town.

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A Friend In Need Part 3

18 Lamashan 4707

The next day they return to Guild with a suggestion that to counter the bribe, Ameiko gives the recently discovered family villa in Magnimar to the guild. This is warmly accepted. One last obstacle is to ensure that the Magnimar branch of the Scarnetti family is not involved as the guild will not cross them.

The party head off to the Scarnetti Mansion. A tense discussion ensues and it is clear that they are not particularly supportive of their cousin in Sandpoint and would appreciate an opportunity to displace him for their “firmer control”.

This news clears the way for guild to approve Ameiko as an employer and for the workers to enter into contract. A day is required for everything to be organised and the group to depart.

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A Friend In Need Part 2

17 Lamashan 4707

The plan for the day is to do some research, what was Xanesha, where’s Turtleback Ferry, is there any more info on Thassilon and the sins?

Samoth heads off to the library to find out what creature Xanesha was. His research reveals that she was a Lamia Matriarch. An ancient race of creatures that were cursed by the goddess Pharasma. They are linked to the old empire of Thassilon.

He notes the mention in the letter found with Xanesha to greed. Coupled with the discovery of the statue under Sandpoint of an old Queen of Thassilon and the magical pool that captured anger he sees a link to sins. Researching Thassilon he also noted that there were seven rulers of Thassilon prior to it’s fall.

His investigation of its fall revealed that it was caused by an event called the Earthfall, when a star fell from the heavens and destroyed the lands of Azlant and Thassilon.

Tig and Rena head to the docks while Rose and Kazallin head to an inn. Both are seeking information on Turtleback Ferry. Their searches reveal it’s location and the routes to get there. The quickest way there is by horse and the route does brush against some wild areas.

Eventually they gather back at the inn they have been staying at and are approached by Ameiko, who has come to Magnimar to hire staff for the glassworks. It transpires that one of the other founding families is conspiring to take over her father’s assets.

Her efforts to get staff have been sabotaged as well. The group split up to interrogate the workers that reneged on agreements to work for her and to also find out why the Glassworkers’ Guild is not supporting her.

They find out that the workers have been threatened by a swarthy man, and that the guild was bribed by him. Baztarj notices this man outside the Guild and when observed Rena recognises him from Sandpoint – a know thug called Jubrayl Vishki.

When Tig tries to follow him, he vanishes and she isn’t able to locate him. After ensuring that the Assistant Guildmaster is safe, they retire for the night.

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