The Lost Lands

Within the Cyrstal Egg
Alien surroundings...
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Journey to the Spire of Iron and Crystal
Traveling out of Bard's Gate

Leaving Bard’s Gate we head north. The multitude of lesser races that infest the Over Realm continue to huddle around flame fires as we pass their encampments in the night.
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Hobbs engages with a human of low intellect at a bridge crossing, the fool seems to be a member of the Free Defenders out of Bard’s Gate. He has little to offer and even has not heard of our band.

Further north along the road we find where Gnolls have captured a human town, its inhabitants long fled. The thought of the Codex driving me on, as my research telling me the Spire could indeed be the final resting place of the Codex.

A brief stop at the long defiled temples of Thyr and Muir occupies my curiosity for a brief examination and journal entry. Here in the Stoneheart Valley it seems that some recent passerby had attempted to cleanse the temples, but I suspect a consecrate spell is needed to start the process. We soon press on, the call of the Codex whirling in my mind.
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Beset by a duo of Ettins we find ourselves under attack. With swift action Orgoth and Hobbs take the forefront while Ifuria and I take cover and launch a magical and alchemical barrage. Curiously Orgoth strikes up a conversation mid battle with the ettins and barters his horse to the giants for them to leave us in peace. It seems Orgoth’s intellectual skills are making improvement with my own guidance. Soon we find ourselves approaching the Spire.

Behold! The Spire of Iron and Crystal. We have arrived. A strange place of four giant crystal eggs held at awkward angles by an iron framework. No entry is immediately available, but there is something oddly strange about this place, something that perhaps cannot be explained by sorcery.
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We take the winding path leading up the back of the cliff face, anticipating the appearance of the magical bridge that will lead to the Spire. For three days only will the magical bridge appear. Soon… the day has come. A bridge of magical invisible force is a nerve wracking experience for the other Dark Hands, my Drow mind taking such fearful heights in stride. The bride narrows, becomes tube like, and begins a steeper entry into the topmost giant crystal egg. Sensing danger I quickly summon the power of my noble blood and levitate all of my companions. Suddenly the steep tube becomes untenable and all would have fallen but with the aid of my magic and we are thus able to slowly descend at a reasonable pace.

Below us we see a maze like structure at the bottom of the egg. Lighting swirling in the space between the egg top and the height of the maze walls. Lightning zooming along the top of the maze walls. We arrive at the end of the invisible tube, finding ourselves deposited in a open roofed room of the maze…

- Excerpt from the Journal of Kaelmourn of House Imrak on one of his many expeditions to find the Codex of Order

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The Rats Below...
Someone forgot to bring the silver!

In the depths of the earth below the Temple of Bast the heroes battle dire rats….
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and Ratfolk….
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The heroes deduce that a dark conspiracy has been afoot for a long time. A cunning plan by the rat followers of the god S’surimus. The priests of this rat god have seemingly schemed for years to burrow up from the depths of the earth below Bard’s Gate and into the holy Temple of Bast.

Early on in exploring the rat caves the heroes rescue Kha Sai, a holy priestess of Bast. Her coffee complexion and accent marking her as a native of Khe’ Met. Unable to see in the darkness below she was forced to grip Kaelmourn’s shoulder and follow his lead deeper into the unholy ground of S’surimiss to rescue more of the priests.

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Orgoth the Relentless At one point found three small Ratfolk who were captured. Promptly setting them free, they returned in a treacherous fashion when the heroes were battling other Ratfolk, and only Kaelmourn’s rear guarad watch stopped them from slaughtering the party from behind.

The band of heroes was forced to cut through multiple groups of ratfolk and wererats as they decended deeper.
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Blood in guts spilled in abundance. The rats protected by their innate defenses against all but silver weapons.
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Coulie and Hobbs face the rat hoard.

The Dark Hands finally make it to where the prisoners are being kept, and the remaining rats have barricaded themselves in the altar room of this under realm nest of S’Sarimiss. Kaelmourn is suspicious that some of the “prisoners” may in fact be other wererats so is reluctant to free them. While debating this question in his mind Hobbs the Living decides to upend the giant cauldron in the center of the room inleashing a swarm of Mind Rats that almost kill him, fortunately Hobbs’ mental defenses hold, much to Kaelmourn’s surprise. The aggressive mentalist rats are only defeated by Kaelmourn and Ifuria’s magical fire.

Then the door to S’surimiss’ inner sanctum is opened…
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Magical webs fly, Orgoth the Relentless and Coulie hold the doorway and slowly forge ahead. Hobbs the Living falls attempting to rescue the priestess who is on the precipice of sacrifice. After much battling the priestess and Hobbs the Living are saved while the heroes withdraw back in the prisoner’s abode drawing heavy breaths and licking their wounds.

Still the high priest of S’surimiss remains with a half dozen wererats and the stolen Eyes of Bast…

Edmundo, Sergent of the Lyregurad, and his troop arrive having followed the trail of The Dark Hands deep below the Temple of Baast. With renewed support the doors to the inner sanctum of the temple are thrown open and the rats are slaughtered to a tail.

The Eyes of Baast were rescued and the rats looted. Among the treasure a Lesser Mace of Smiting was found.

Purann retuned a few days later and in a solemn ceremony the Eyes of Baast were placed back in the temple and the heroes were granted the Boon of Baast and granted the right of Healing for Life at the Temple of Baast.

Boon of Baast
+2 divine bonus to charisma interactions with Feline/Diplomacy free action to change great cats attitude to free action.

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The Dark Hands arise
Including the Juliello Broad-Coe catastrophe

Fame and fortune from the liberation of the abducted slaves make The Dark Hands well known in the taverns and halls of Bard’s Gate.

This fame brings two immediate offers, 1) The capture of a map from Juliello Broad-Coe, 2) protecting the Temple of Bast in the absence of its high priest. One offer was clearly an honorable one that would bind us in a favorable future alliance, the other was a questionable undertaking that may lead to infamy.

With little hesitation Magpie and Ifuria accept the Fortune’s Fool heist against the better judgement of Kaelmourn and Hobbs the Living.

Much hilarity ensued. Resulting in the following.

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Meanwhile…

Purrann seeing Kaelmourn around the temple district conducting his research decides to ask him and the Dark Hands guard the Temple of Bast while he is goe out of the city for a short while.
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Arriving again at Bard's Gate

The stirge menace has abated as they and the mad wizard have fled their cave domain when the heroes retuned to confront them.

Upon spending some time in Bard’s Gate the heroes learn that their are a number of abductions of women and children near the city’s canals. Abductions in the night. Kaelmourn suspects the hand of Orcas and a plan is developed to dress Obsidian Shard as a normal lady and Ifuria as a child.

They catch a glimpse of a gondala clown and his strnge looking companions but can’t outrun their watery departure. The next night Ifuria and Obsidian Shard are found by patrolling paladins of Muir and taken into custody.

Ifuria and Obsidian Shard are taken to see Janet the prudish Paladin of Muir, also known as the Lady Protector. The paladins turn out to be the Sisters of the Maiden’s Cross. Paladin’s of Muir. The paladin’s are from Lowport region. They have traveled to rout out slaver’s who are bringing persons from Bard’s Gate to Lowpoet.

Janet wants the The Dark Hands to infiltrate Slaver’s Way in the Black Market. A part of town in Bard’s Gate with a bad reputation, not a welcoming area for paladins of Muir.

A bit of flash and fast action. The heroes buy the slaves, but at the hand over a third party brings a squad of soldiers to take the slaves. After the heroes victory their deeds spread through Bard’s Gate and there is much rejoicing!

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On board the Summertime

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The heroes arrive at Eastgate. Here they rest and recouperate for about a week. Kaelmourn and Obsidian visit the Temple of Freya where Rainbow and Kaelmourn are healed of their lepracy. Kaelmourn seeks guidance from a local sage on the Codex of Order and finds out that there are three Orcas strongholds in the area: Rappan Athuk, Tsaar, and the burial grounds of Thyr and Muir.

Slith arranges passage on the Summertime, a keelboat that is traveling up the Amrin river to Bard’s Gate. Whiile the heroes see off a number of minor threats, one night there are best by an ogre magi who’s greatsword fells many of the heroes and who uses cone of cold to kill Hassan, Rainbow, and Slith. We great effort the Dark Hands are able to finally defeat the ogre magi through the use of alchemy, violence, and faire fire.
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The Journey Continues
Some cloud giants are evil

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Traveling along at a slow but steady pace, the Dark Hands are slowed greatly by the wagon and its holy load. Upon the road the heroes encounter many farmers, traders, and patrols. However, a young red dragon feasted upon one of the group’s horses, a pair of rocs ate two more, and a cloud giant ambushed the party and almost killed Kaelmourn and Slith, but luckily the giant grew tired of his sport and stalked away laughing.

The Dark Hands did defeat a Gnoll warband and a flock of deadly giant vultures. Also, they beat back and killed three hungry bears. Ifuria’s firebombs were especially useful against the troll that burned at the hands of the Dark Hands.

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Setting out for Fair Hill

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– The Dark Hands join the Duke of Tilar Brindel’s traveling convoy along their journey to Fair Haven. -

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Attacked by fire drakes’s Wind Dancer dies in flames defending the Duke’s convoy.

The heroes meet many merchants and patrols along the road to Fair Haven. Even meeting patrols from as far away as Bard’s Gate.

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In a frightful encounter a wyvern decended upon the heroes. Only through Kaelmourn’s magical blinding of the beast, Orgoth’s arrows, Hasan’s chop, and deadly assaults of the other heroes was this mighty beast felled before he mauled Hasan to death.

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Fall of the Bloody Fangs

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We could not stand. A drow arcanist of incredible might set among us. He came with a matriarch of his race and some of their drow slave races. We would have crushed their ‘eads but we could not stand against the magic. It swept into our ranks causing so many of us to fall heavy with sleep or sending crashing waves of rainbow light into our ranks and stealing the wits of all orcs it touched. Inter-spearsed with the quick attacks of the rat folk and grey dwarves we just could not stand. The matriarch drow healing any damage we could inflict on this band of cut throats who called themselves the Twilight Lords.

We the Bloody Fangs, had gutted the village of Westmere, slain the Wyvern of Ladden’s Reach, and defeated the Worgs of the Undermire, but we fell to these drow and their slaves!

—-The spirit voice of Gramash the Hammer of the Bloody Fangs


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The Drow in the Hall
A submission of Peace

The days rolled by and Gorsk was getting better, the cleric we have with us is very skilled. If it had not been for effective care he would have died.
We moved on and descended back into the deep we searched the catacombs and came upon some equipment the Ghast had acquired, a potion some armor and a very well made sword the potion was given to Mr grey, the sword to Kael and the armor went to Gorsk, I hope this helps his ability in defending himself.
As we continued on we found a strange hall lined with mirrors, the end of the hall had a door the double doors were opened by mister grey, inside were 4 heads facing the door we came in, after a thorough search Mr Grey determined they should be turned in to face a diamond in the floor. Gorsk and I moved them, as the last face was turned to the diamond it began to glow. Mr. Grey decided to enter the glow and as he did the glow disappeared and Mr Grey seemed to feel more invigorated. We left and found a hall way with door on the left and right spaced about every 20 feet down the hall. The rooms seemed to be a work space in the past; we found in the room some odd tools we could not figure the use for. As Mr. Grey entered the third room, a scorpion attacked him grabbing securing him with his claws Gorsk stepped up and crushed the creature in a single blow. The cleric healed Mr. Grey and we continued on later I learned he had nearly died then, I didn’t realize how powerful our cleric was. The hall ended in a door Mr Grey found no traps, and opened the door. Inside the door we found a room with several Goblins.
Mr. Greys’ incredible speed with a dagger ended any chance of negotiating with them as Freddy (that’s what the Goblins called him) fell to the ground dead. They froze with fear and Mr grey threw another dagger, his sister Ifera ran into the room with a vile of some flammable material throwing flames about the room. I joined the fight and never landed a blow, Gorsk and Mr. grey killed all of them. We found armor, weapons and arrows, fit only for the sfirnoblen. As Mr Grey searched the area we found a bag with copper, holy water and a few silver. I am not sure why they didn’t give the cleric the holy water but that went to the alchemists.
Mr Grey found a secret door, we moved down the hall and found a stairwell that led up the hall ended in a blank wall. Opening we found a small stream that pooled into a pool 10 to 20 feet around the area was filled with mist Mr. grey was struck by a creature from the mist. He shut the door quickly and left , I guess the ghost in the mist had scared him, luckily it had not greyed him.
We moved on thru another hall and found two secret doors. We took the one to the left and began to hear rantings from down the hall perhaps we have found Fenton. His rant was about Freya the Drow put him to sleep, we removed his gear, after he awoke the drow tried to convince him for atonement to be a servant for 10 years. A human named Vladoff he was a paladin of Freya. His please fell on Def ears for the drow. The Cleric did convince the fellow to follow her for ten years and he would be atoned. I will have to watch these fellows.
We decided to rest for the evening. In the room we found Vladoff in. But later we decided just to go on the secret door that Mr Grey found a secret door that had an animate dead spell, were we found several zombies the Drows slave Orgoth and Gorsk killed the creatures. We found that the statues (totems) were magicked and destroyed them this would keep the dead from being re-animated. We decided to go back to the room and rest for the evening.
Continuing in the morning we moved back thrue the rooms and found a secret door we had marked once inside we found a room filled wth statues of kings and queens. There were several generations represented. We decided to break through one of the doors. Inside we found a chair had been jammed under the door blocking it. Once inside we found the room litered with broken items, it looks as if some goblins and Hobgoblins had fought in the room.
An Ominous site, Mr Grey moved forward and was struck down in a single blow Orgoth ran to the rear and Gorsk ran to help. I could not reach the battle in a single move, it saved my life. Gorsk was struck by a creature which brought him down in a single move, we ran I later found out that it was a undead creature called a wight? As I turned to run I saw Mr Grey stand for a split second I was about to help until the red of his eyes beat down on me with a hatred that pierced the soul, there was nothing I could do. Perhaps another day I would come back to put him to rest, him and Orgoth.
We returned to rest for the evening, the Rat king allowed 2 of his warrior with us. The next morning we moved back to the statue room spiked the door leading to the wight, and chose another door to go thru the two rat folk that joined us searched the room, some sort of crypt the drow guessed. Suddenly the walls broke away and skeletons attacked. The Cleric stepped forward and filled the room with the power of a cleric we found the room to be a dead end. We went back to the statue room and went thru the last door, we came to an intersection to the left the hall caved in to the right it split in a y, forward the choice we took was partially caved in. Moving around it we found a room with several goblins digging. Orgoth moved to speak to them which resulted in a fight , I am not sure what he said but they seemed pretty pissed off at him. One ,a female, seemed to be the leader she had magic ability and took the streangth from orgoth. The fight was short because the drow put them to sleep. We did finish them off in short order. We went to the iron bound doors and one of our new companions Trapper was nearly kill from the lightning that came from it when he tried to open it. We went back to the intersection and turned left and followed the hallway, as it closed in to a 5 foot hall we traveled down until we came to an open room. As we all entered the room, Flim and flam began searching and we were attacked with arrows.

We were attacked by orcs who came out of secret doors out and attacked the “drow” nearly killing him the two rat folk killed one of the orcs and the paladin that has pledged assistance to Obsian killed the other. The pounding on the door has continued through most of the evening in the morning we deciding to go thru we were greated by 4 orcs they really didn’t stand a chance. They were cut down by sleep from the drow. And dispatched by Flim and Flam. They spent the day searching the room, I am quit surprised it takes so long to search the room, but it must be that way since Mr Grey also took this amount of time, while waiting we were attacked by 3 ghouls. Flim was paralyzed by the beast Orgoth killed one as it moved in to attack him and I and Flam finished the two we had.

As we moved further on we ran into a group of Drow, Kael sat and talked with them it seemed to not be going well. We decided not to confront them, I guess at a later date we may need pass here again. I will be sure to be ready.

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