Pruod-Skotran

Session 43: December 13, 2014
My Jerky Business

We all continue to argue over whether we should use the talking stone to try and contact Lucy. Kalpa is definitely a proponent of calling her, and Merielle is dead set against it. Finally the group works out a compromise: I will try the talking stone. The group will tie me up in case anything tries to take over her mind. I consents to being tied up; Sam stays ready with the sleeping rock. I try the stone and there is no connection – I feel nothing.

Meanwhile, Durian takes the test at the guild and passes. He becomes a member of the psy guild and is commissioned to wander the lands and report back with what he sees.

We decide to lead the expedition to Uutkleza. After some consideration, Maetan declines to go with us, but does give us some representatives of the House Lubar. She sends us with four psy guild members (arcane specialists) to aid in opening the door. She also gives us crodlus to ride, inix to carry cargo, and 15 laborers to handle the animals and gear.

Then comes the negotiation of the fee. Maetan and her uncle open with us leading the caravan for a 10% fee of all that is found. Somehow, when all is said and done we end up with a huge sandskiff to transport ourselves and anything we may buy or acquire along the way.

We then set out on the few weeks journey to Uutkleza. This passes uneventfully.

When we arrive back at the sinkhole the laborers set up ropes and anchors for us. As we get down to the sand pile Merielle notices far more tracks and print than when we left, mostly human shoes and sandals. We head over to the ziggurat and see even more tracks.

Finally we head down the stairs into the hallway. The hall is now charred black and there are charred bodies in the hallway. We can make out 10 corpses in front of the door. One of the members of the psy guild tells us that the hallway has been bathed in magical fire, but the glyphs of warding still hold.

We all decide to vacate the hallway, save for the 4 members of the psy guild, Durian and Sam. The first attempt to dispel the warding goes badly and 2 of the psy guys are incinerated. The second try yields success: the glyphs glow brightly and then the stone sloughs off.

Sam hollers “all clear!”

The psy guild members are dragging their fallen comrades back and we surmise that the other corpses are of House O’Reilly.

The rest of us make our way down as Sam is trying to open the door, but it is really stuck. Eventually, with more effort and more of our group, the door flies off. There is a creak, a slam and movement.

We cautiously enter the room. In the middle of the room are bridges that lead over a chasm. There are zombies in the room.

We start to fight them, but they hit really hard. We try all different tactics. Gathalimay manages to push 2 into the chasm and very nearly goes in himself. We fight on and on and are running out of healing. They’re hitting all of us and we can barely keep ourselves upright. Then the worst happens. Zombies kill Krynn and Sam.

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Session 42: November 8, 2014
Aw jeez Glenn!

We continue to fight the brogue until he gets up and runs for the stairs. Kalpa hits him with the Guardian’s Hammer for the final blow and then the giant is down.

Maetan sends off for someone to take care of the body. Another of her men comes in with a small box and examines the body, then starts doing calculations on paper.

Merielle notices a pool of blood that is seeping into the floor basically in a straight line. She asks Sam and Kalpa to cause a distraction so she can investigate further. Sam and Kalpa start asking Maetan’s men if they can make brogue jerky. Meanwhile I stealthily (thanks to the distraction) get a sample of the blood. Kalpa checks the satchel the giant was carrying and the parchments within.

Meanwhile Krynn examines the spear in the floor. He tries to jiggle the spear. Then he tries to get Sam to help.

Maetan’s man, Luskin, start placing crystalline objects on the brogue and then stands at the head of the body. This doesn’t seem religious. The crystals start to glow and pulse and then the body disappears.

Kalpa turns to Luskin and says, “what just happened?”

Luskin responds, “I sent the brogue back to Ra’an.”

“How?”

“Psionic transport.”

“Can you show me?”

“How can you not have seen this before? You can apply for the transporters guild in Ra’an.”

Durian pipes up, “Can you transport us?”

Luskin looks at him strangely, “you can’t transport anything living.”

Maetan’s men prepare to leave.

Meanwhile Sam puts on his gloves and punches the floor. It sounds kind of hollow, but there’s no movement.

Gathalimay starts examining the murals and after a bit realizes that it’s really all one large picture of one large squid head.

Gathalimay, Kalpa and Sam pull three spears and try to jack open the crack. The stone floor lifts up about 3 inches. When they let go of the spears it falls again.

Merielle asks me to look for a mechanism. I find a slightly different colored section of the wall and press the panel. The floor starts to grind, but it seems like the mechanism is broken. Kalpa examines the crack and shard swarms to the stairs underneath. He sees the stairs and about 40 feet down into a hallway.

We hear Kalpa “Stand back! I’m going to try science.” and suddenly Kalpa’s wall appears. There’s a splintering sound and the floor collapses in on the stairs. Kalpa manages to dive out of the way and not get hurt.

From outside we hear “what the hell was that?”

Maetan runs in. Merielle says “Kalpa fell into this hole.” Kalpa pipes up “Oh my leg….”

Maetan says “what is this? People have been coming in here to look for something for ages. Who are you? You’re not actors.”

I let slip “you wouldn’t believe us if we told you.”

Maetan doesn’t seem to hear me and is more interested in the floor.

Gathalimay looks with her. “You want to go in?”

Maetan pulls out a brass tube, slides it open and light appears. She sees stairs and the hallway and yells for some more light. Sam tries to grab her, but she side steps him.

“You said we were friends, what’s going on?” she asks him.

Maetan continues down the stairs and down the long hallway to a set of doors. There are magical runes glowing all over the walls.

I follow slowly and lag behind the others. There seem to be glyphs of warding to open the door, and they trigger something but I can’t be sure of the effect.

Maetan pronounces, “Yeah we’re not equipped for this” and starts to leave.

Gathalimay, “Where are you going?”

Maetan: “Back to Ra’an to re-equip. Then we’ll come back for further investigation.”

The rest of us discuss whether we stay here and open the door or go back to Ra’an" Ultimately we decide to follow Maetan back to Ra’an.

When we get back out to the desert, Kalpa asks Maetan what all of this means. She responds, “I don’t know. I’m not part of the Psy Guild.”

We journey back to Ra’an at a fast pace; there’s no camping. Maetan is more withdrawn on the journey back.

On the way, Gathalimay looks at the items in the satchel. There appear to be drawings of a decorative box and keys. The keys look like the keys we have. It seems like the gist of it is instructions on how to revive the litch.

Merielle tries to make friends with Maetan and see what she knows of the glyphs. Kalpa continues to discuss how to join the guild and the returning expedition with Luskin. Luskin notes that most guilds select children and train them and that it’s not unheard of for adults to join a guild, but it is rare.

One of the men of Lubar says “we do hire caravan guards, even though it doesn’t look like it. And Maetan seems quite taken with you.”

Around us we hear the Ra’anites recounting our efforts in the battle.

Kalpa also asks Luskin what he knows about Lucy. Luskin says that there are lots of songs about the crystaline empress. Apparently, shortly after the first Saharabellum, Lucy unified all the nations by force, but then went to sleep, on a throne, in Saharabellum. He reports that many people have made sacrifices and re-enactments and tried to wake her up. In fact he notes that the once per decade event at Saharabellum is coming up later this month.

As we progress in our journey all of us notice that we don’t feel quite right. We continue praying to our deities, and our spells and charms keep working, but at the same time we all feel a little hollow and not as fulfilled as we used to.

Krynn and I spend some time comparing our gods and goddesses trying to find out if any overlap. We think we figure out that Krynn’s time is actually about a thousand years before our own.

Kalpa and Gathalimay continue to wage a battle to try calling Lucy with the talking stone. Merielle denies them the stone.

It takes us about 2 weeks to get to Ra’an. As we crest the hill and look down on the city, we see that where there were 30 foot tall walls there are now 15 foot walls. Now there are lush areas and gardens versus the plowed fields the last time we were here. There are tall spires, and brightly colored buildings and the shimmer of water streams.

Maetan offers us the hospitality of House Lubar to reward us for our help with the brogue. We accept. Gathalimay explores the marketplace.

We follow Maetan towards the center of town to a compound with brightly colored towers. Maetan rides in the vanguard. People run up to take the reins of her crodlu and an emissary escorts us to a wing. We are told to prepare for a feast in our honor this evening.

The steward escorts us to our quarters which are full of feather beds and pools for bathing. Racks of clothes are brought in for us to choose from.

As the sun sets low, the tone of the colors is less hard and much warmer. The stewards arrive to fetch us and take us through the hallways to a large banquet hall. There are great roast crodlus and so many wonderful smells. Maetan gives a rousing speech about us and music and merriment ensures.

Gathalimay heads towards the musicians and I try learning dances with the locals. Durian tries to dance and stumbles quite a bit and Sam tries and falls asleep.

Suddenly the music stops and the stewards open the double doors. An old guy in a floating chair floats in. We can guess that he is Commissar Alcok, who we have been told is also the head of the Psy Guild.

Maetan exclaims “Uncle, you’re joining us!”

Kalpa tries to approach the Commissar but is blocked by guards. He calls out “You throw a nice party!” He and the Commissar communicate in their minds.

The evening passes. Gathalimay enjoys the food and drink. Krynn finds an open air garden for some quiet.

Kalpa asks the Commissar if we can go back to Uutkleza. The Commissar expresses that he would rather his niece not go back and offers to let us lead the expedition. Kalpa also asks if Durian can join the psion guild, and the Commissar says he can take the test.

We all enjoy an evening with Ra’ans elite community. But what will we do next?

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Session 41: October 11, 2014
Always on the run. #broguelife

So we’re in the desert in the middle of the night. We decide to rest with Kalpa and Merielle watching over us. As the sun rises, Merielle notices a caravan in the distance. She can sort of make out that it’s all crodlu and kanks. There are no inix so she concludes it isn’t a cargo caravan. It’s approaching from the direction of Ra’an.

Kalpa shines his brightest and the caravan turns to where we’re camped. Merielle sighs and wakes everyone up. Gathalimay starts a welcome song.

At about 200 yards out, the twenty plus members of the caravan split and start to form a wide circle around us. Three individuals approach. Merielle notices that they are dressed oddly – in bright colors and long flowy robes. They carry bows and swords.

Sam rides Reginald backwards out to greet the group of 3 and Kalpa follows.

Sam calls out “Hello friend. We are traveling and looking for some guidance.”

The woman in the center responds, “Friends? That might need to be determined. What are you doing out here in the middle of nowhere.”

Sam replies "We were headed for Hanuman and assaulted by zombies and lost all of our supplies.

The woman looks quizzical, “there haven’t been undead here in a century at least. Have you seen a brogue? Are you sure it wasn’t a brogue?”

Sam looks puzzled as well, “No. No brogues here. It was definitely undead.”

The woman responds and said “Well undead would be quite troubling. Are you without mounts stable boy? Let us meet your companions.”

They begin to walk towards us. She asks “what kind of undead did you say assaulted you?”

Sam replies “Zombies and vampires.”

At this point the group reaches the larger party.

The woman introduces herself as Maetan of House Lubar.

Sam introduces himself, “I’m Sam Leary of the Flock of Seagulls.”

Maetan smiles, “Oh I get it, you’re players!”

Sam decides to go with it. “Yes the caravan abandoned us when the zombies attacked.”

“Were you really that bad?” Maetan chuckles. She turns to the two beside her and says "bring the others in, this isn’t a problem.

Sam introduces the rest of the group: Kalpa the lighting tech, Durian and Krynn the other techs, Merielle & Thalie the actresses, Gathalimay the musician, and himself as the lead actor.

Maetan studies Sam, “these costumes are astounding. Really well done. We’ll get you some regular clothes though.”

Sam rushes on “we’re doing an original performance of the fights of the Flock of Seagulls.”

Maetan asks if we do a re-enactment of Saharabellum. “You know, the one where the rocks are raining down and the knucklehead yells ’I’m a defiler!’”

Maetan agrees to take us with her back to Raan, but first she says they are on a hunt for a brogue.

Gathalimay knows that they’d probably be hunting brogue renegades to harvest for magic elixirs and salves.

Sam announces “we would be honored to assist you in hunting a renegade.”

Maetan hesitates, “but you’re actors? No no, we’ll get you spare mounts and you can come with us”

Maetan gets us mounts and leads us deeper into Uutkleza, which is a sinkhole approximately 60 to 70 miles across. There are no undead here, and really nothing out here. We travel for 2 days to the center of the sinkhole.

While we travel Gathalimay tries to get the gossip from Ra’an. Maetan is really upset. Brennan O’Reilly, of House O’Reilly procured Gryphon eggs three months ago and she knows that he’ll be on the hunt for the brogue as well. She wants to press on at a fast pace and hopefully beat him to finding the brogue.

Maetan and Sam continue to talk along the way.

One afternoon Maetan comments “Saharabellum was a crazy time. Defilers could suck life any time.”

Sam responds, “it’s hard to believe it’s been so long… you must have been pretty young?”

Maetan looks at him oddly, “I was not yet born at Saharabellum. They do still gather there every 10 years. It just goes to show you that a silly tradition can last 500 years. And to wake a crystalline child? What happens when that child awakens?”

Sam says “Well people tell tales….”

Maetan continues “Anyone who sleeps that long is a harbinger of doom.”

After this conversation Sam returns to ride with us and relays what he has learned.

In the evenings Gathalimay sings songs around the fire. Some of the men in the group are familiar with Gathalicism. Durian tries to detect brogue magic, but so far doesn’t.

Finally we reach the rim of the sinkhole, and can see the bottom where the sand stays, surrounded by a hard crust.

Maetan pulls out equipment and sets up ropes. When the apparatus is ready, she sends people down to scout. The Ra’anites go first, light torches and call back up to announce the all clear.

We all go down. It takes us a bit to adjust to the dark, but we’re in a large spherical cavern. The sand has fallen down and made a hill in the middle. It seems like the city has sunken down, and is covered with stone and animal bones.

Merielle thinks she might see brogue tracks heading off to the east, but she doesn’t share what she sees.

The cave spreads out in eight directions and the Ra’anites scatter. Kalpa, Sam and Gathalimay head southwest. They try opening doors and hear latches. They find remnants of furniture, partially sand filled rooms. Gathalimay sees metal door handles.

The Ra’anites move through other sections fairly quickly. Sam and Kalpa leapfrog down the street finding piles of bones. There is some smell of feces, and Merielle thinks it might be trolls.

From a large building to the east we hear shouts and screams. “Watch out! That thing is huge!”

We run towards the shouts and see lights from a ziggurat.

There are more screams and we hear bone crunching. A body comes flying out and we recognize it as one of the Ra’anites in the caravan.

Maetan runs past us and into the building yelling as she passes “don’t think less of yourselves if you don’t fight, you’re just players.”

Durian finds another stairway that leads down into the ziggurat. I run to the man lying on the steps and try to stabilize him.

There are more screams, and a head is thrown up the stirs.

Kalpa rushes in and see Durian and Maetan. He jumps over the wall and down the stairs. He can now see a large chamber, lit by torches and braziers. It’s smoky and smells like wet animal. He sees the brogue in the center with a spear in one hand and a headless body in the other. He announces “We come in peace!”

The brogue snorts, “You may have come in peace, but these want to kill me.” He throws the headless body.

Sam yells “let’s do this!” and charges the brogue, knocking him prone. He hits the giant, and there is a defiling vortex and blast.

Kalpa walks over to the prone brogue, “there are 12 of us. Come peacefully and we won’t kill you.”

Brennan laughs.

We start to trying and hit the brogue. Each time we do however, he is somehow able to strike at us, causing fear and pain.

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Session 39: August 9, 2014
Gone with the Wind crossed with Resident Evil

Krynn leads us to a small inn, filled with crosses and garlic and dimly lit. There is food on the tables; Krynn says the food has been there for years, but is not spoiled. Though the inn has several rooms, Krynn mostly lives in the pub/dining area. There are bars on the windows and on the front and back doors. Krynn explains that he has holed up here for a while, and that the bars prevent the undead from getting in.

Krynn says originally this place has a giant river next to farm fields. It’s never been a desert so long has he has known it. And yet, he’s been trapped here for ages. As time goes on he hasn’t even felt the need to eat anymore.

Krynn says that he used to be on the city watch. “I’m on the city watch,” Sam interrupts.

“Things were fine until Garrin moved to town, and then weird things started happening. Garrin moved into the biggest house into town and hosted lots of parties. I was even invited and met him a few times. One night though, a sea of undead came into the city.”

Krynn says that we’re welcome to stay as long as we wish. Sam starts loading his pockets with jerky from the table.

Durien senses a faint aura of magic from Krynn. Meanwhile I notice all the books in the room, which are mostly full of tales gods and goddesses I’ve never heard of. I do recognize one though, about Corlon, the god of the elves.

Sam immediately lays down and starts snoring. The rest of us are wary. Kalpa and Merielle stand guard and keep watch on Krynn and the rest of us try to rest, but it’s a really restless kind of sleep, we doze a lot and have dreams of chasing and being chased. Gathalimay gets up and searches for coffee in the kitchen.

Once we’ve rested a bit, we decide to check out Garrin’s place. Krynn takes us on a winding path through alleyways and here and there. There are corpses everywhere and they look a little time worn, but they aren’t exactly rotting. Every so often we see a zombie shamble past. Some of the zombies notice us, and we just manage to evade them. What should have been a straight shot across town takes us an hour.

We arrive to an estate with a fountain and a manor that’s 2-3 stories. Durien and I can sense waves of magic coming from the manor. We do a little bit of reconnaissance, hoping to be able to sneak in the back door, but the hell hounds are guarding the back so that idea is out.

Finally Kalpa open the door and charges in. We can see Garrin walk out on the landing upstairs. Sam covers his eyes and the zombies shamble around inside.

Garrin looks at Krynn and says “Oh I see you’re starting the game today. This should be over quickly.”

Kalpa attacks Garrin and ends up getting dominated. Kalpa, under Garrin’s control, starts wailing on Sam. Garrin walks away.

The rest of us kill the zombies shambling about.

Garrin reappears in the dining room and Sam tries to give him a big bear hug. I try my undead spell and immobilize Garrin. We get a few good hits in and manage to get Garrin on the ground, bloodied, but he smirks and says “not today” and disappears in a puff of mist.

Durien thinks he went to the back, maybe the kitchen.

Krynn wanders back to the kitchen, where there is a huge hole in the ceiling that opens into a room on the floor above. Sam runs into the kitchen.

I sneak up the stairs and hear shuffling towards the back of the house. Merielle and her cat join me upstairs.

Sam tries to run and jump up through the hole onto the floor above. He lowers a rope and almost everyone else climbs up into the bedroom.

Meanwhile Merielle opens the door we’re standing at which leads into another hallway. We walk into the hallway and see zombies shambling at us. Merielle kills the zombies.

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Session 38: June 14, 2014

In the arena, Sam kills the rhino in one dual attack.

One of the guys hits Durien again. Gathalimay flies down to Durien and heals him. Kalpa sees a group of people running towards the arena and he yells “I rallied support for us!” The bad guys shift and run. Kalpa jumps in the arena towards Gathalimay, Sam and Durien.

The approaching group tuns out to be templars (town guards and mercenaries). Kalpa cuts the horn off the rhino. Sam questions the templars “Did you come to reward me?” One of the templars replies “We came to get those bastards who ran off. We never can catch them. Any idea why they were after you?”

The slave trader remarks “Great fight! I made 10 times what I would have made off the slave.”

The captain of the guard tells Sam, “Well done, but you said you were alone and you aren’t. come around tomorrow and bring your friends. We’ll see what you can do for the city of Ra’an.”

Meanwhile, back at the yurt an assassin kills Nymm. He uses his katar to take off Nymm’s head and proclaims “it’s done!” The remaining assassin next to Merielle backs off and runs. Meri shoots him as the guy takes off. We remove everything of value from Nymm’s corpse and wait for the rest of the party to return to decide what to do.

Eventually Sam and the others return and Gathalimay distributes the winnings from the bets. We all share what has happened and sit around the ruined yurt. Sam goes to sleep, exhausted by his fight.

About half an hour later we see the slave trader and several guys with him coming our way. He introduces himself as Baba O’Riley and announces he has a business proposition for us. He tells us that he hates the slave trade and what he really wants to open is a trading house. He would like to hire our group on retainer and provide us with animals and a caravan. He will ask us to transport some goods to Hanuman and he offers to buy some of the treasures we might unearth along the way.

We discuss it as a group and agree that it sounds like a good idea. We agree to get some rest and leave in the morning.

The night passes relatively uneventfully. More animals arrive over the course of the night and in the morning there are wagons waiting outside as well as other people: Jim, Billy, Joe, Bob, Aloysius, Bubba, Ray and Roy.

Sam wakes up and asks why there are so many animals and people outside of the yurt. Gathalimay explains about the caravan situation. Kalpa tells same that the templars gave us a mission to leave with the caravan.

We set off towards Uutkleza. The journey should take us about two weeks.

We pass the first week fairly smoothly although we are meandering quite a bit. Billy seems to be changing directions all the time. When we question him, he tells us that there are more and more bands of roving undead out here and he’s trying to avoid them. He notes that within a few more days there will be a lot of undead and that he doesn’t want to continue too much further. We discuss it and agree that the caravan will go on to Hanuman and we will make a brief stop at Uutkleza to look for valuable artifacts to sell (and of course another key, but we don’t share that with Billy).

We settle in for the evening and have Kalpa and Merielle watching for anything unusual. Around 3am a freezing mist rises and the whole area is covered in a dense fog. As dawn approaches the fog lightens, but still is very dense, almost too dense to determine where to go. It’s very quiet and we no longer hear the kanks or the inix or really anything. Until we hear the bane of hounds.

Gathalimay decides he should tie a rope around his waist and that everyone should hold onto the rope so we don’t risk losing each other. Some people agree, others of us just walk behind. We set off, but the fog is so thick we can barely see the person in front of us. Then we hear footsteps running towards us.

Everyone stops an a few moments later a guy comes barreling out of the fog. He barely registers the people there and hits the rope full force, sending him flying and knocking over Gathalimay in the process.

Gathalimay says “Hello, who are you?”

The guy, who appears to be a kid, screams “get out of here… run… RUN!”

Kalpa joins the conversation, “what are you running from?”

The kid tries to squeeze past him “I’m Garrin and I’m running from the hounds. I was out walking with a friend and the mist came up!”

We hear creatures on all fours running towards us.

Garrin screams “it’s too late!” and squeezes by.

We can hear an animal off the to the left, and then another, and then a third.

I cast revealing light on one of the hounds. Sam runs to stop Garrin and then grabs a hound. Kalpa sends a hound away yelping.

Then we hear the sounds of a man in chain mail running through the fog. He appears before us with a mask on his face of a beak of a bird and a giant ax.

Meanwhile Garrin has walked a little further away, trying to conceal himself in the dense fog. Sam asks Garrin where he’s from and Garrin answers “Borovia.”

Gathalimay shouts out to the man running in the fog “Hello!”

The sounds of the running stop.

Gathalimay yells again “friend or foe?”

We hear “Hello” back.

Gathalimay yells again “Who are you?”

“Who are you?”

Garrin whispers loudly “he’s the master of the hounds, you don’t want him near us.”

Kalpa asks “do you control these hounds?”

The man comes forward and says “So the hounds were here? Are you the master?”

Sam says “Let’s sort this out. Garrin this guy says you’re the master?”

The man, “there’s another with you?”

Garrin whispers again “he’s going to get me. Kill him, kill him!”

Sam seems convinced to try and kill him.

Kalpa speaks again. “Where are you from?” and the man answers “I’m Krin and I’m from Borovia.”

Durien suddenly speaks up, “Send me out there, I look just like him” as he shifts.

Merielle tries to shoot Garrin in the knee to stop him but her arrows seem to fly wide. Gathalimay tries to stop Sam who is heading towards Krin.

Durien goes over to Garrin, “where do you think you’re going?” Garrin twists away and runs off into the fog.

Krin swings his ax at Sam. Kalpa bullrushes his way in between the two and yells “What the hell Sam?”

Sam stops, looking confused and says “I don’t know….”

Gathalimay speaks up again, “My name is Gathalimay, we’re not from here. Can you help us out?”

Krin, “with what? Can you still see him?”

We shake our heads and Krin starts cursing; “Son of a bitch always gets in my way.”

Krin turns to us; “Don’t look him in the eye, he can take over your mind.”

All of a sudden we notice that it is getting lighter and the fog is thinning.

Krin explains, “He’s a demon sorcerer. There’s always a thick fog since he showed up and it’s interminable.”

Gathalimay asks Krin how he navigates in such thick fog.

Krin answers, “I grew up here.”

Kalpa asks, “how do you track him?” Krin responds, “Every day we chase each other.”

Sam asks “Are there any others here in Borovia?”

Krin; “Sometimes other strangers show up and Garrin always gets them. They don’t last long. And he always has his three hounds with him.”

We talk with Krin a bit longer and he invites us to shelter where he is camped out, in an old inn. As we walk there we notice all sorts of dead animals.

For its efforts the party earns 600xp

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Session 37: May 10, 2014
So many clothespins...must be something on the line.

The next morning Sam takes Reginald to tryouts with him. Kalpa goes into town to sell some of the things he has collected on our journey. Nymm agrees to stay in the yurt along with Gathalimay, Merielle and me.

Kalpa goes to the marketplace and sells everything but the magical weapon.

Sam arrives at the Templars just as a slave caravan has arrived. A kid runs over to Sam screaming “father, father you came to save me!” Strangely he bears a strong resemblance to Sam. Sam thinks he might recognize the kid as the one we met back at the caravan meetup, the kid who was dying to follow the Flock of Seagulls around. Sam negotiates that he will claim the kid, Durien, in exchange for fighting in the arena that evening.

Meanwhile Gathalimay is preaching Gathalicism to anyone who will listen just outside the yurt. Other travelers move farther and farther away from the yurt.

I take the time to look through the books I have collected to see if I can learn anything about Uutkleza, where we are headed next. I find a story of a powerful prisoner who was brought to Uutkleza, and then just one week later the entire city sunk into the desert.

Merielle and Ravel are just watching Nymm.

Kalpa returns from his foray into the marketplace and notes that he needs to sell a great sword. Nymm quickly offers to take him somewhere in town where he can sell the sword. Kalpa agrees to take Nymm with him.

Nymm takes Kalpa to a shady guy named Adolfo. Upon seeing Nymm, Adolfo remarks “you know there’s a brice on your head? You’re pretty ballsy showing up here.”

Kalpa makes a deal with Adolfo for the sword in exchange for some money and spilling where Nymm will be sleeping that evening so Adolfo can collect the price on his head. As he leaves, Kalpa mentions “we’ll be staying at the Dragon’s Boots inn.”

Kalpa immediately returns to the marketplace and goes over to where a man is selling two rhinos. After some negotiation Kalpa purchases one of the rhinos. He also learns that the rhino that he didn’t purchase is destined to fight some poor soul in the arena tonight.

Meanwhile Nymm sends a note via messenger. Then he joins Kalpa and suggests they go get a drink at a bar. They stop for drinks, and Nymm tries to catch if anyone is tailing him, but doesn’t see anyone.

Before returning to the yurt, Kalpa picks up his rhino and names him Hydra.

Kalpa and Nymm return to the yurt. Shortly thereafter Sam returns and explains the situation with Durien.

It turns out that Durien is a shifter. We’re all still split on whether to allow him to join us, but for now he stays with us.

In the late afternoon Sam heads back to town to fight in the arena. Kalpa warns him that he’ll be fighting a rhino and I give him some extra healing potions. Gathalimay, Durien and Kalpa head to town to watch the fight.

When it is time for Sam to enter the ring, Kalpa shines like the sun and Gathalimay announces him: “forged in the fields, battle tested in Saharabellum, it is Samuel sexual chocolate Leary!”

Sam squares off against the pissed off rhino. It seems they are fairly equally matched, both getting hits in some of the time, and managing to block them off other times.

Back in the yurt, suddenly Ravel bristles at a noise outside. Before we can react, knives slice up the sides of the yurt and two people step in. One slices at me. “What do you want,” I scream. Merielle aims an arrow and shoots. “Are you here for this asshole,” she quips. Merielle tries to shoot the crodlu’s rope to let him loose, but misses and hits Reginald. Merielle kills the first assassin, but not before another knocks Nymm unconscious and stabs his unconscious body.

Meanwhile, in the stands, several people creep up behind Durien, Kalpa and Gathalimay. They hit Durien hard. Durien runs away, over the wall and he falls into the arena with Sam and the Rhino.

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Session 36: April 19, 2014
Brewmaster Dumbass

We spend the next few days traveling along the edge of the forest, foraying in when we need food.

On the third day we come upon a spot where several caravans have stopped and are hosting a swap meet. Gathalimay immediately starts talking to a spice dealer who came from Raan, in addition to purchasing some spices to add to the evening meals.

As Gathalimay wanders the swap meet, a few of us notice that a small human seems to be following Gath around. Sam grabs the kid and drags him into an empty booth. “Why are you following us?”

“Are you Sam? Of the Flock of Seagulls?”

Gath pipes up, “Oh are you a fan? You don’t know me the defiler wizard?”

“Gathalimay was a half-elf, you’re an orc.”

It turns out the youth, Durien, has heard tales of us from Saharabellum back in Raan. He set out to find us and can’t believe he just found us here.

Durien wants to come with us on our travels but he’s young and has no supplies. We argue about what to do with him. Merielle wants to just tie him up and leave.

Sam asks him to take a knee, close his eyes and swear an oath. Once Durien’s eyes are closed, Sam thwacks him with the sleeping rock and we take off.

In our haste we do manage to notice that people are staring at papers and pointing at us.

We hop on the kanks and run them across the desert. We continue through the night and finally stop the next morning.

As we’re resting we hear the sounds of a running crodlu and can see in the distance one guy heading for us at a sprint, coming from the direction of Raan. Nymm puts shrouds on him and shoots the rider with his crossbow. Merielle also shoots him with an arrow. He doesn’t fall off but he does look around. Sam charges at him and knocks him off the crodlu, and then pins him down, but the dude teleports out of his grasp. Gathalimay hits him and knocks him unconscious.

While the rest of us are figuring out what to do with him, Sam wanders over to the crodlu and rifles through the saddlebags. He pulls out some papers that look like those the people were holding at the swap meet. The first is a list of “Targets” and the second is a list of “Targets of Opportunity” and Nymm’s name appears on the second one.

Sam moves over to Nymm and shoves the papers at his chest “What is going on with this??”

Nymm looks at the man who appears to be a mul and says “I don’t know this guy.” He reads the list and then walks over to the unconscious mul and tries to stab him, but fumbles. Nymm turns to the rest of us “my mom’s name is on that list, I have to protect her.” Gathalimay ties the mul up. Sam slaps the mul until he is awake.

Nymm puts his sword to the guy’s throat, “What the fuck are you chasing me for?”

“You know why you need to be killed… failure!”

Nymm slashes his throat.

Sam shoves Nymm, “What the hell?? I thought we were questioning him”

Kalpa is busy rooting through the saddlebags and the mul’s body. He finds food and water, 50 gold, 2 katars and shadow mail armor. He also notices the symbol on the saddlebags and calls Sam over.

Sam recognizes the insignia as that of the Wizard King in Raan. “Nymm you just killed a king’s rider. What the hell does he want with you?”

Nymm ignores Sam and asks Gathalimay to help him move the body into the forest.

When the body is disposed of Nymm turns to the rest of us. “I’m sorry, my mom’s name was on the list.”

The rest of the party still doesn’t know what to make of what happened.

Sam approaches the crodlu and tries to mount and succeeds. In silence we get back on our kanks and continue riding.

The next 4 days pass uneventfully, but tensely. On the fourth day we arrive outside of Raan. We decide to set up camp outside the walls and that Nymm should stay in the yurt, out of sight.

We know that Raan is presided over by Yajargo, a sorcerer king who seems fairly benevolent to his people. Raan is a walled city with agricultural fields on the outskirts. It is the first time most of us have seen fields this green. Raan sits at the headways of the river and thus there is spring water here to grow things.

Sam, Kalpa and I head into town to acquire supplies and gather information. Gathalimay, Nymm and Merielle stay at the yurt.

Kalpa and I are procuring supplies when Sam slips away. Kalpa is annoyed, but I finish my shipping and suggest we head to a local tavern to observe and potentially gather information. Kalpa makes some attempts to engage in conversation that don’t go very well.

Meanwhile, Same heads over to the templar’s office. Here he offers his mercenary services and asks if there are any open contracts or work. The officer at the templar’s office says there are some patrols to deal with the undead at Uutkleza, but invites Sam to return the next day for a test of his skill to determine whether he can join them in fighting. Sam agrees to return.

While we’re in town, five guards on crodlus ride up to the yurt. Nymm hides silently behind a curtain, while Merielle and Gathalimay report to the guards that we are just stopping here for a few days to get supplies before we move on to a friend’s house.

Gathalimay tries to entertain the guards with his lute, and Merielle notices that they all wear the same symbol that was on the saddlebags on the crodlu and the mul.

We all meet back at camp to share the information we have learned.

Merielle knows that about five years ago the wizard kings stopped making public appearances and became very reclusive, acting through the templars. Gathlimay knows a tale of sorcerer kings in hiding. It also occurs to him that Lucy came to consciousness not that long ago and now is out causing trouble because she is possessed by a defiler.

For its efforts the party earns 200xp.

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Session 35: March 8, 2014
Wizard of Odd and His Curtain

We keep going until we find more solid ground and then we decide to rest for 8 hours.

When we begin traveling again, we head towards the forest which we can just make out on the horizon. As we get closer to the forest we can just make out a village in the distance, with people milling about.

We draw closer and we can see that the people are all very pale, so pale it’s disconcerting. It is a small village surrounded by a low wall, and we can see tents everywhere.

Gathalimay calls out “Hail!”

One of the pale humans responds “Well met.”

Gathalimay explains that we have been on a long journey and are in need of supplies.

The same pale human introduces himself as Agosto and welcomes us to the village inviting us to take part in its hospitality. Agosto explains that his people came to this spot as pilgrims to the forest which is guarded by children. They are currently camped here waiting for the forest to invite them in. We can see down the path towards the forest a big stone sarcophagus at the edge of the forest. The village appears to be self-sustaining; we can see a well and small gardens being tended. We ask if we may fill our canteens from the well and Agosto agrees.

Merielle and I notice that none of the villagers seem to be carrying weapons. We talk with the villagers who tell us more about how they are waiting to enter the forest. There is talk of a very few individuals who have entered the forest.

Agosto takes us down to the sarcophagus and explains that when people want to enter the forest they go and lay inside the sarcophagus until they are permitted to enter.

We examine the sarcophagus and it appears to be a plain stone box with a stone lid. Kalpa pushes the lid and it pivots open. Ravel jumps up and sits on the lid. The sarcophagus is sitting flush on the ground. Kalpa and Sam try to push it or move it to no avail.

Sam and Kalpa exchange glances and then Sam uses the sleeping rock on Agosto. Sam and Kalpa lay Agosto in the sarcophagus and swing the lid back into place. Ravel still lays on top.

The party then sets up camp to watch the sarcophagus. After a bit one of the townsfolk, Akee, comes by to ask if we’ve seen Agosto. We tell him that we haven’t seen him and he leaves.

While we are waiting Merielle checks the area for prints. She finds small boot prints, but they don’t look like the gait of a child, rather a small adult. I can sense some magic in the area, and recognize the sarcophagus as some kind of magical item.

Kalpa checks the sarcophagus and Agosto is still lying inside. A while later we start hearing moans and wails from inside the sarcophagus. The night continues and we hear more moans but we don’t see anything.

When daylight dawns Sam pushes the lid open. Agosto is lying in the sarcophagus with his eyes wide open, staring straight up, breathing heavily. We splash water on his face and he wakes up a little bit.

Agosto mumbles something about not feeling well and wanders back to the village.

We break camp and follow him back. As we approach, we can see Agosto staring blankly. The villagers around him are looking back at us antagonistically and we know we are no longer welcome.

We go back to the edge of the forest and Gathalimay volunteers to lie in the sarcophagus. Shortly thereafter, he starts screaming “let me out, let me out!” When we get the sarcophagus open, he tells us we have to break it so Sam tries. At some point the stone cracks, and then it crumbles into dust. We don’t know what happens to the magic because that can’t be destroyed.

Now we’re at a loss, so we decide to head towards the forest. As we get close to the edge we see a movement and a javelin comes sailing out and lands at Sam’s feet.

“You dropped this!” Sam calls out.

Kalpa calls out “what do I need to enter? I have your tomb.”

Five more javelins sail out of the forest and land around Kalpa.

“We’re coming to check things out,” Sam says, “we just want to pass through.”

“We come in peace,” Gathalimay adds.

The undergrowth parts slightly.

Kalpa walks into the undergrowth. Sam follows him calling out “we come from the south bringing the gifts of modern medicine, the sleeping rock.”

Kalpa gets farther into the forest and starts hearing voices inside his head. He calls out “I repented!”

Sam follows him.

All of a sudden two small people with curved daggers appear in front of Kalpa.

“We don’t intend you harm,” Kalpa says.

The small people attack Kalpa and leave him unconscious.

“This one was unworthy” one of the small people says to Sam as if to explain the attack.

“May I retrieve his body?” Sam asks. They nod.

Gathalimay, who is making his way through the undergrowth hears voices in his head and says “I’m not one! I’m not” and retreats out of the forest.

Sam asks the small people, “what do we do to make the unworthy worthy to cross?”

“Worthy or unworthy is set in motion by actions of the past. Can you forgive a knife?”

Sam drags Kalpa out of the forest.

“I’m removing the unclean from the forest. How do I clean him?”

“Death cleanses.”

Kalpa stands up and calls out “Let us pass!”

Two more little people appear.

Sam taps Kalpa with the sleeping rock and Kalpa goes limp.

The rest of us are comparing notes outside the forest.

Sam, Merielle and I walk back into the forest and don’t see anything. We call out to the people asking if we can hunt for supplies in the forest.

“Take no more than you need and do not harm the forest” comes the response from somewhere in the trees.

We decided to journey to Raan along the outer edge of the forest.
_
For their efforts, party members earn 300xp._

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Session 34: February 8, 2014
Does your cat have nipples?

The Beholder scares Gathalimay, Thag, Sam and Kalpa who start fleeing the scene. Then it turns on Merielle and knocks her unconscious.

Then the Beholder turns to leave. Ravel hits the Beholder, and Nymm follows up with a blow. Suddenly the eyeball bursts into flame and is gone.

Immediately Gath, Thag, Sam and Kalpa aren’t afraid any more. We explore behind the pillar to see where Adrag might have gone – we see his tracks lead behind the pillar and then they just stop.

At that point we decide to rest for a bit since we’re all hurt. Gath tries the milk from the kank and says it tastes sweet, bitter, sour and a bit a like dirt.

After an uninterrupted rest, we get back on our way heading towards the forest. We anticipate we’re about 2 days away from hitting the forest.

At some point we find ourselves heading on a downward slope and we come to an area that once was a waterfall. There is a 10 foot drop off the side of the cliff, and everywhere is filled with sand and silt.

Merielle casts her bridge of roots so we can safely keep going and we caravan down. On our way down there is a small avalanche of sand and in various spots the sand appears to be sinking under our feet. Suddenly we notice more little avalanches that don’t seem to be caused by us.

A tentacle comes bursting out of the sand near the milk kank, and another near Nymm and a third near Gathalimay. Sam grapples with a tentacle and grabs it, but then it throws him 25 feet.

Then the gaping maw of a sand horror appears, and a tentacle grabs Kalpa and puts him inside the maw. The mouth chews Kalpa for a bit and then spits him out and disappears under the sand.

The mouth seems to disappear and reappear a few more times and the tentacles try to grab everyone and the kanks. Finally the the tentacles kill two kanks and the mouth swallows Thag and disappears under the sand. We wait and wait and it doesn’t reappear.

Then there is a burp and a bag of of holding comes flying out of the sand. But where is Thag?

We tie the dead kanks to the live ones and drag them away. I alternately run alongside the party and ride the kank carcasses.

For its efforts the party members earn 900xp.

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Session 33: January 11, 2014
"Don't glue yourself to yourself."

Merielle, Kalpa, and Thag start taking the rest of the silt runners down. Thag charges through the remaining silt runners, and falls unconscious. The rest of the party manages to finish off the last few and revive Thag.

We move forward in the canyon a bit to find an area of better cover, and rest. Halfway through our rest, we can hear the sounds of wild creatures coming out to eat the corpses we left behind. Luckily they ignore us.

We manage another few days through the canyon, and fight off a few silt runner attacks. On the way we also see the remains of smaller caravans, broken wagons and some skeletons.

We keep on going, and we figure we’re about five days away from the forest.

Then this morning we came around a bend and saw a person on a kank. It looked suspiciously like Adrag. Gathalimay charged forward and spoke to him.

“How are you feeling?”

“I’ll be honest with you, I’m feeling very disappointed. You let me down, I sent so many silt runners after you. You should be dead by now.”

“We help you and you want to kill us?”

“Yeah it’s kind of a game. I shift into an Oni and appear all injured, tell people a story and they go the other way and die at the hands of the silt runners.”

Kalpa chimes in, “We’ve turned away every army, what makes you think you can take us alone?”

“I’m not alone. I’ve brought some very special creatures just for you.”

Then he started laughing. He shrank down and ran behind the pillar. All of a sudden a beholder appeared in front of us. It was a large floating eyeball, with tentacles with eyeballs at the ends. Several dragon born creatures with big boned swords also appeared at the tops of neighboring pillars.

Sam grappled with the beholder, riding the eye, while we all managed to kill the dragonborn creatures.

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