Campaign of the Month: September 2018

Shadows of the Rift

Session Forty-One



27 Longday 508

The party is still in Karak Tuvar and have just defeated a cloaker and collected its treasure. They have retrieved the journal that they have came for and are debating whether or not to explore the rest of the complex. They decide that they do want to explore.

They backtrack and take one of the corridors to an area that they have not explored yet. Savaric leads the way looking for traps and Mõrvar unsticks any doors along the way with the crowbar.

In one of the rooms, they encounter murals depicting dwarves fighting against Drow—the dark-skinned, evil elves of the Underdark.

After encountering several empty rooms and other empty corridors, they finally come upon something different. As Savaric is searching one of the hallways, an incorporeal dwarf with glowing red eyes appears in the corridor before him. It distorts itself and starts coming at the ranger. Savaric draws Edgefrost and goes to meet the apparition. Victor retreats from the spirit.

The wraith attacks Savaric and misses. Savaric attempts to overrun the wraith and the spirit takes the opportunity to attack the ranger, hitting him with negative energy. Savaric makes it past the wraith, setting Mõrvar up to flank the spirit. Mõrvar attacks the wraith, doing a respectable amount of damage. Savaric attacks the wraith as well, doing a modicum of damage. Rilka channels the energy of her deity to harm the undead. Surm casts Magic Missile against the wraith, doing respectable damage. The wraith then attacks Mõrvar, reaching out and touching him, making him feeling the chilling touch of negative energy.

Rilka once again channels positive energy and damages the wraith. Savaric attacks the wraith with Edgefrost and hits. The wraith then hits Mõrvar once again with negative energy. Mõrvar then returns the favor by hitting the wraith. Surm casts Magic Missile again and dissipates the wraith. “Surm the Wraith Slayer!” Surm crows.

They speculate about the nature of wraiths. Mõrvar reveals that they are creatures born of evil and darkness that drain life force and are shadows of their former lives. Rilka adds that they could roam and that they could become, through an unholy transformation, a Dread Wraith. Mõrvar is concerned that whatever created the wraith is here and that they are unprepared to handle it, that they need more healing. So Rilka channels more positive energy and heals the party slightly. Mõrvar drinks the Cure Moderate Wounds potion as well. Then he drinks two Cure Light Wounds potions. Then they continue down the hall.

The hall opens up into a room with a mosaic of painted stones on the ceiling. There is another doorway leading out of the room. Savaric searches the room and finds a loose floor tile. Beneath it, he finds a chest. He finds no traps associated with it and so Mõrvar helps him haul it up. Savaric checks the chest for traps and finds none, but the chest is locked. Surm steps forward to pick the lock, but checks it for traps himself first. He finds none. Surm uses his tools to open the lock, hears a click, and suddenly an acid arrow appears and launches itself at Surm. Fortunately, it misses him. Surm opens the chest, finding it full of coins and gemstones.

The doorway leads into another room with a chasm and two more doorways. Savaric searches the room on this side of the chasm and finds nothing of interest. The door on this side not trapped and is unlocked. Suddenly he hears a shriek and an incorporeal dwarf appears in the room. Surm screams “Ah! It’s another wraith dwarf!”

The wraith attacks Mõrvar and misses. Mõrvar swings at the wraith and connects, doing a substantial amount of damage. Surm casts Magic Missile at the wraith doing decent amount of damage. Savaric critically hits the wraith. Mõrvar hits the wraith and the wraith dissipates.

Savaric sneakily opens the door. It opens into a corridor. Savaric follows the corridor, searching, finding nothing of interest, until it curves up into a door. He searches the door and finds no trap, but the door is slightly askew and stuck. Mõrvar comes forward and unsticks it. It opens up into a room they’ve been in before: there is a mural of priests of Skondir placing blessings upon various dwarves and two Morlock bodies lie on the floor.

They backtrack and go back to the room with the chasm and decide to cross it. Mõrvar ties a rope to his body and jumps across. Or tries to—he falls through the chasm and everyone holds the rope. He misses the edge and smacks the edge of the chasm, cursing, and the rest of the party haul him up. He tries again this time makes it.

Mõrvar checks the door on the other side and finds that it is stuck. He calls for someone to come over to other side with him. Rilka reluctantly jumps—and misses. She catches the rope, but smacks against the side of the chasm. She curses and uses the rope the climb across. She readies her sword and Mõrvar forces open the door. It opens into a room with a door and several doorways. There is also an old forge with old tools laying scattered about.

Surm jumps across the chasm, as does Savaric. The porters are left behind. Savaric and Surm search the room. Mõrvar puts the rope away. Savaric checks the door. Nothing of interest is found. The door is not trapped and it is unlocked. The doorways open into corridors that connect to each other. Savaric and Surm search the corridors for secret doors and find none. They do find a pile of debris, but nothing else of interest. The door opens into a corridor that connects to the others. This frustrates Mõrvar to no end—he’s certain that there’s a secret door here, but none is found.

They all jump back across the chasm and make their way out of Karak Tuvar.

It’s afternoon when they emerge and the encampment is gathered around something that can’t be seen by the party. Alasir is saying, “Einar. Alfhild. Why don’t you drag this thing out of camp.”

“What is it?” Mõrvar asks.

Everyone turns and Alasir says, “Oh! Sir. It’s a troll.”

Alfhild and Einar start dragging the corpse out of camp. Mõrvar follows to make sure it doesn’t get back up. The party assess the soldiery to make sure they’re alright. It looks like Garth has taken quite a beating. Rilka goes to Garth and casts Cure Light Wounds. He thanks her.

Mõrvar commends Alfhild and Einar on defeating the beast. Einar says that they were fortunate enough to get it surrounded. Mõrvar says, “Now let’s burn this bastard.” And they burn the body and Mõrvar sticks around to make sure the body burns.

Mahgnus and Alasir come up to Surm. Alasir says that there is nothing more than the troll attack to report and Mahgnus confirms what Alasir says. Surm says, “Very good.”

The party decides to continue to camp here and leave the following day.

They open the chest and find that it has 98 gold pieces, 18 silver pieces, and 90 copper pieces. It also has an aquamarine, two pieces of ivory, a piece of jade, a saltwater pearl, a sard, a topaz, and a zircon.

Mõrvar spends his time at camp appraising the various gemstones that they collected in the outpost.

Rilka tries to get a sense of how happy the soldiery are—but doesn’t really succeed.

After appraising the gemstones, Mõrvar moves on to the items.

Surm plans the party’s route back to Aldasar to meet with Kragar Stoneanvil to return the journal. He also pays Mahgnus to distribute pay to the soldiery. Surm also casts Detect Magic on the longsword and chainmail to try to discern its properties. He determines that the longsword is +1 and the chainmail is +2.

1 Starfall 508

The party arrives in Rosemeedt around noon. The steward of Rosemeedt welcomes the troupe back to the settlement as a way of checking in. The troupe pitches a camp at the settlement, but takes a high-end meal in the hall, courtesy of Surm. They get cleaned up and Mõrvar tries to improve his relations with the soldiery. Then he goes out to find female companionship. He finds a willing lady, but later finds that she requires three gold pieces for her services. He tries to renegotiate and she finds new companionship.

Meanwhile, at the hall, everyone is in high spirits. Rilka sits next to Kortash. The soldiery is pleased with their meal. All is right in the world.

5 Starfall 508

Surm tells the troops that he is happy to meet his contractual obligation to pay them at every city along the way. Otherwise, he will pay them when they arrive in Aldasar. Alasir discusses the matter with the soldiery and passes word through Mahgnus that they are fine with waiting to get paid in Aldasar.

That morning, the arrives at a point outside the gates of the city of Braith in Leilior. A crowd has gathered, circled around facing something. Mõrvar rides forward to see what’s going on. Rilka follows him. They can see over people’s heads as they are on horseback.

They see a man with livery depicting three hawks. They also see a man dressed in black with a large greatsword. There is also a bound man on his knees, with his head hung down. Rilka asks a nearby man what is going on. The man looks at her kind of warily and says, “The execution of a thief.”

“What did this man steal?” Mõrvar asks.

“Silver. From the lord’s home,” the man says.

Rilka asks about the man with the three hawks. “That’s Lord Colbyn,” the man says.

Mõrvar has heard of Lord Colbyn. He owns lands outside he city of Braith. He is known to be a vassal of the Lord Mayor of Braith and has a reputation as a harsh man.

“How much silver is worth an execution is worth an execution?” Mõrvar asks.

The man shrugs, “I don’t know how much was stolen. It’s worth a man’s life.”

The man in the livery proclaims, “This man has been found guilty of theft. Of his betters. It is not the first time this man has tried to steal from me. Let all those know that would steal from Lord Colbyn be met with swift and harsh justice.”

The man in black puts his foot on the back of the bound fellow. The rest of the troupe has now arrived and is drawing looks from the crowd. The man in the livery looks at the troupe and quickly says. “Master Executioner. Please carry out this sentence.”

The man in black takes his greatsword and brings it down on the man’s neck and decapitates him.

There are gasps in the crowd. Some people catcall, “No thieves!” “Justice for Colbyn!”

The man in the livery turns toward the crowd and says, “This crowd needs to disperse! There’s nothing more to see here.” He looks warily at Rilka and Mõrvar as he says this. Mõrvar smirks and turns and moseys back to the troupe along with Rilka. Both can feel the lord’s eyes on their backs as they ride away.

They report what they saw to Surm when they get back to Surm. The troupe continues on toward the gates of Braith. Rilka turns and looks to see if the lord is still staring, but he has apparently moved on.

After a lengthy discussion of whether or not the troupe would enter the city, they decide to stop as food vendor and see if would sell the troupe his food while the troupe camps outside of Braith. So Surm approaches a man with food in his wagon.

“Excuse me, good sir,” Surm says.

“Yes, what can I do for you,” the man says.

“I was wondering if you would come and sell my group some fresh food before you enter the city,” Surm says.

“Well, I was taking this load to the Scarlet Charger, an inn. I guess if you are willing to buy some food, I’d be willing to sell it to you,” the man says.

“I’d be willing to buy some food for seventeen people,” Surm says.

“Oh my,” the man says, surprised.

“I don’t know how much food you have,” Surm says.

“Well, that will probably take care of my load,” the man says. “I can sell this to you for five silver.”

“Are you are a cook?” Surm asks.

“No, I just sell the goods,” the man says.

“Do you have the means to cook all of this?” Surm asks.

“Not with me, no,” the man says.

“Not with you, but do you have the means?” Surm asks.

“At home, sure,” the man says.

“Well, could you go get it? How long would that take you? And how much would that trouble cost you?” Surm asks.

“For 5 copper?”

“Alright sir. Go get your stuff, come back, and cook my army up a meal. I’ll pay you,” Surm says.

“What’s your name, sir?” Mõrvar asks.

“Selwyn,” the man says.

Surm gives Selwyn 10 silver so that he can leave his cart there and he can go home and get his gear and come back and be quick.

The troupe encamps outside the city gates. They can see some movement by the city militia out on the city gates, watching them.

After about half an hour, Selwyn comes back with his gear and with his wife. They set up and start cooking. Mõrvar chats with them and the troops while they cook. Rilka watches the campsite.

The food is eventually prepared. Kalia (Selwyn’s wife) and Selwyn serve it up. Mõrvar chats up the couple. Selwyn mentions that he has a farm on Lady Balyn’s land. She’s a good mistress—she only takes what is her due and they take the rest to market. After the meal, Selwyn and Kalia pack up their gear and start to head back home. Mõrvar tells them that if they ever need anything and they are around, don’t hesitate to ask.

After their meal, they pick and move on.

6 Starfall 508

Around midday, the troupe can see the gates of the city of Skeene. After a lengthy discussion, the party decides to bypass Skeene and move on.

7 Starfall 508

The troupe bypasses the city of Kivley.

8 Starfall 508

The troupe arrives outside the city of Aldasar around midday. The party discusses how they want to handle the time off for the troops. Surm calls Mahgnus and Alasir forward and informs them that while they are staying in the city, the troops will be on duty, but room and board will be paid and Alasir will be setting up a rotation of when the troops will be on duty and off. At night, everyone will be reporting back. Everyone’s behavior while off-duty will be reflecting on the group. There needs to be a buddy system and the troops will want the party to know if they get into trouble. Alasir has no problem with the orders.

The troupe approaches the gates and are asked by the guards at the gate who is in charge of the troupe. Surm dismounts and walks up to Rilka’s horse and says “Captain Rilka is in charge.” He says, “Very well,” and then announces the various gate taxes and fees and asks if they have anything to declare as far as the selling of wares. Rilka says that they are looking for a place to stay and if he has any recommendations. He says that they could find an inn with a common room. He says that there is Umbergrow and Waigh’s or Uilliam’s Resting Place. They pay the gate taxes and head inside.

Aldasar is the capital of Leilior, with many sights to see. It has a very busy marketplace and the streets are crowded. The troupe heads toward Uilliam’s Resting Place to meet with Kragar Stoneanvil.

Uilliam’s is a comfortable, modest, inn in the market district. The troops wait outside while the main party heads inside.

The inn doesn’t seem as busy as the last time they were in. There are still patrons, but it seems more subdued. Surm goes to the innkeep to arrange lodging for the seventeen members of their party. The inn has seven rooms and two suites, which each hold four. The rooms will hold two, if pressed. They don’t normally make their common room available for lodging. They take the two suites and six rooms. Surm manages to talk the innkeep into charging the troupe half-price for the rooms as they’ll be staying there for an extended amount of time and stabling their horses. Alasir makes the room assignments for the troops. Surm then gives Mahgnus funds to pay the troops.

While the party is conducting their business at the front desk, Savaric notices a dwarf standing at a table trying to get their attention. Surm notices that it is Kragar Stoneanvil, waving frantically at them.

Surm goes to meet Kragar. The dwarf smiles at the Northron. “So, you’re back from the North?”

“We are back from the North,” Surm says.

“Excellent, excellent. Were you able to find the outpost?” Kragar asks.

“We were able to find the outpost,” Surm says.

Rilka looks about for eavesdroppers, but doesn’t notice any.

“So, were you able to find the journal?” Kragar asks.

“We were,” Surm says.

“Excellent! That is good news indeed,” Kragar says, clearly pleased.

“Are we conducting business here?” Surm asks.

“I have a room. It looks like you just purchased rooms here…” Kragar says.

“I think our rooms will be too small,” Surm says.

“Well, yes, we can go to my room. I have a suite,” Kragar says.

As Kragar heads to his room, Surm flags down Mahgnus and has him fetch the journal and the other items with the seal of Karak Tuvar and the symbol of Skondir. Rilka and the others follow as well.

Kragar’s room is very neat. As he chats with Surm and the others, he unlocks a footlocker. “I hope the journey was not too arduous. Obviously it was not too much to handle as you were successful.”

“Do you know what caused all of the earthquakes around Karak Tuvar?” Rilka asks.

“No, I don’t actually. I’m hoping the journal will shed some light on that,” Kragar says.

Surm tells him about the various things they encountered in the ruins. Kragar is particularly disturbed about the wraiths, as they have not moved on to The Maker. “They have now,” Surm says.

Mahgnus arrives and knocks on the door. Surm takes the items and thanks Mahgnus, who excuses himself and leaves.

“This is more than a journal,” Kragar says.

“Oh, we found more than a journal,” Surm says, “But I didn’t know if you’d be interested in what we found.” He hands the dwarf the journal.

“Thank you,” Kragar says and hands Surm a small pouch with fifty platinum inside.

Surm shows him the gold and silver cups with the seals of Karak Tuvar. He also shows the dwarf the symbols of Skondir and the candelabra with the symbol of Skondir. By Rilka’s estimation, the dwarf is looking at the items with a cool expression on his face. By Surm’s estimation, he is only playing it cool and is very interested in them.

“These are all very interesting pieces,” Kragar says.

“I thought you might like them. They’re very dwarfy,” Surm says.

“Yes, very dwarfy,” Kragar agrees.

“That’s why I’m offering them to you before they hit the streets,” Surm says.

To Rilka, he doesn’t seem worried. Surm thinks he still trying to play it cool.

“I appreciate that,” Kragar says.

“I’m going to check on Mahgnus. Why don’t you peruse these things. I’ll be back in a moment,” Surm and Mõrvar exit the room and leave Rilka and Savaric with the dwarf.

Once outside, Surm quickly asks Mõrvar how much the dwarven items were worth. Mõrvar gives him his estimates, but he’s not sure how much the gold cup is worth.

Meanwhile, Kragar is looking over the goods. Mõrvar and Surm return.

“I would be interested in these pieces,” Kragar says. “For the lot, I’d be willing to spend 75 platinum.”

Surm does some figuring in his head, and says “I was thinking more along the line of 90.”

“90? Ouch,” Kragar says.

The two negotiate and Surm sticks to his guns about the 90 platinum and Kragar finally relents and pays the 90 platinum.

“Enjoy your dwarven antiquities,” Surm says.

“Thank you, I will,” Kragar says. “Obviously The Maker smiles upon you. You were very successful.”

Hands are shaken all around and everyone leaves the dwarf’s suite.

The party regroups at their own table in the common room, towards the back of the room, to talk business. They pull Alasir into the conversation as well. Rilka checks out the patrons of the common room to try to ascertain why business is so slow, but doesn’t notice anything obvious. Surm goes to ask the innkeep if there’s a private meeting room they can use. He also mentions that things are kind of mellow around here since the last time they were in—is there a reason business is so slow? There is no meeting room and there’s a scarcity of luxury items which is driving up prices—including liquor and tobacco—which is driving away business.

The party discusses the distribution of masterwork and magical weapons and armor acquired in Karak Tuvar. After the items are claimed by the party, other items are offered to the soldiery, with the offer that if they take it’s theirs if they turn in what they already have to be sold. Alasir will distribute the weapons and armor offered.

They also discuss the distribution of the other items found in the outpost, including the possibility of keeping the Aedonii obelisk. They also discuss the distribution of personal shares and retraining plans while they are in the city. They will be staying in Aldasar for approximately twenty days.


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