War-torn Allumisia

Attack on Esham
But whodunit?

The stalwart adventurers, confident in their destruction of the evil, Orcus-powered tower, ventured north from the town to continue their mutual journey toward the forest town of Esham. As the sun settled its burdened globe below the horizon, they decided to make camp in a sheltered clearing near the road and settled down for a much-needed rest. Aldric, standing sentinel over the camp, rousted the others at dawn, and they broke camp preparing to go on their way. Suddenly, a blood-curdling cry echoed through the camp, and the adventurers rushed to investigate. As they broke through the underbrush into the next clearing, they arrived just in time to see a wicked black blade cut down the last of a border patrol and laugh belligerently. The sentient sword then noticed their presence and hurtled through the air toward them. After a contest of wills, Aldric intimidated the Khopesh enough to master its control, though it still echoes dark thoughts in his mind from time to time.

Finally reaching Esham, the party was greeted by a guardsman who convinced them to head to the center of town, where a historic non-aggression treaty was to be signed between Geador and Escardona. The packed square was in awe as the signing ceremony began, but before its culmination the city fell under a surprise attack. Assailants swarmed into the town before the gates could be sealed, and giant stones fell from the sky as guards from both nations scrambled to escort their dignitaries from the square, now ablaze with fire, death, and destruction.

The princess of Geador turned up missing during the attack, leading Guardsman-Lieutenant Eramus Silverstrife to temporarily conscript the tough looking group of adventurers in the square to find her. After a brief but frantic search through the area, they dashed down a side-street and caught up with the kidnappers. The brigands were easily dispatched, but during the scuffle, a number of large objects rained from the sky once again, but these rose out of a dust cloud to reveal a squadron of small golems. After a frantic fight which nearly claimed Keira for the grave, the princess was saved and the humans and the golems were defeated. On inspection of the lead golem, Aldric triggered a communication with the master of the golems, who revealed himself as the infamous Archmage Xanben Acidhorn. Acidhorn vowed revenge would be swift when his Death Warden reached them, but was laughed off to his dismay. The heroes escorted the princess back to her father and received the honor of meeting King Hestavarius III of the Kingdom of Geador, where they discussed their next steps.

In Short:
Defeated & subdued an insane blade, finally reached Esham and observed a historic treaty signing (well, almost), assisted in relief efforts from the attack, saved the princess, bargained with the king.

Things Received:
Deathstalker Khopesh +1
300 experience each
50 experience each (minor quest completion)

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Leaving the Town Outside Time
Torching the Tower

Our heroes find themselves on top of the bell tower. After Sorrow detects a wire-like beam of necrotic energy emitting from the bell above them to a warehouse across the street, the party decides it would be best to inspect the source. Before leaving, Aldric and Sorrow had another altercation which leads to Sorrow being throttled near the edge of the tower to prove Aldric belonged to no man. They eventually agree to terms of his existence and Aldric stresses the importance of his mission. The group collects themselves and makes their way a room with one of the sewer grates on the first floor. After Aldric eliminates the threat of the two other full barrels of wine, they make their way down the ladder and into the sewer.

The sewer is musty and rancid, reeking of death and vermin. The party follows a small stream of sewage until they are met by an festering undead rat, which soon attracts a few undead rats looking for a snack. The group easily defeats these death rodents, and continues to press through the disgusting sewer. They notice a living rat scurry past them and through a huge pile of debris that had collapsed part of the sewer. The group is forced to detour. As they continue, Aldric picks up a sound ahead of them which turns out to be an giant, gelatinous ochre jelly. The group notices there is an unconscious half-orc being consumed by the blob, so they decide to kill the creature in order to save him. In the struggle, the jelly splits in half which releases the half-orc and allows him to get to his feet and join the battle. The party vanquishes the two halves of the jelly, mends their wounds, and introduces themselves to Korgul the Mountain. Korgul makes sure to reinforce how he could have handled the ochre jelly himself, which the rest of the group had differing opinions about.

The group continues along the path, finding themselves on the same path of the stream before. They explore a small dead end and discover the dead body of the rat they saw earlier. They placed a marker by his corpse, and mourned the death of Squeakers. They move along and find a hole in the wall which turns out to be a hiding spot for survivors in this sewer. A group of four humans greet the party, and the survivors agree to share what they know about the town. The party continues on assuring the group of survivors they would be back for them.

Up a ladder from the survivors’ hideout, the group emerges in the street in front of the warehouse, noticing the streets are eerily barren. They open the door to the warehouse and on the second floor they find a man in red robes decaying at a desk in the center of the room and some doors along a far wall. Aldric, curious about the corpse, proceeds to punch him. This of course awakens the zombie, and it screams and attacks the group. After finishing the zombie off, the group finds a letter that falls out of the red robe. This fingers the corpse as a priest of the Raven Queen who failed in his mission to stop the evil bell’s power.

The curious party engages a lever by the desk, opening doors across the room revealing a zombie. The bell tolls once as the lever is activated, and the zombie bursts into nothing. Aldric activates the lever five more times, opening and closing the doors as he turns it on and off and tolling the bell each time, ensuring there was a connection. They decide to leave it on, and they break the lever leaving it in the off position. The group heads back downstairs, with the town now safely in the present again. They rescue the survivors from the sewers, and escort them out of the town. As they venture a distance away, the tower explodes from the overload of necrotic energy through the lever circuit. They hear cheers from the town, and notice the survivors from the sewers are almost in tears of joy that they are finally free. As they find the main road, the survivors decide to go south, offering the party money, which was refused, so they decided to take half.

Items found:
60 gold pieces
Stag helm
260 experience each
300 experience each (Major Quest Completion)

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A Town Outside Time, part II
The Heroes Seek the Source of the Corruption

“Does this rag smell like chloroform to you?”

Earlier in the day, we looked in on the journey of one Keira, a human shaman from the nomadic tribes of the Tachan. Keira was led by her spirit companion on the same road which the party later followed into the dark town, though she passed through a number of hours earlier than the others. She headed straight for the inn for a warm brunch and tried making conversation with the innkeep and the serving girl, to little avail (one was a nonconversationalist, and the other couldn’t remember her name). Keira started feeling fuzzy and foggy as she continued her meal, and eventually staggered from her chair only to be taken by the innkeeper. She passed into unconsciousness as the portly innkeep held a cloth to her face.

“We need to go up.” “We just went up the stairs…?”

Meanwhile, later in the afternoon, our other heroes walked from the inn and watched from 30 feet away as Aldric inserted the newly found key into the magical padlock sealing the bell tower. In the process, he removes his crowbar left there from earlier and triggers the magical trap once again. The lightning burst momentarily deactivates ALDC-78, but he self-reboots after a moment. The heroes head into the tower.
In the foyer, the group is assaulted by a wave of necrotic force, and behind them the door slams shut and fades into the stonework – so much for the only way out of the tower. On the ground floor, they find a strangely well-kept keep with a blazing fireplace on each floor and a spread of food set out onto a table. They notice a couple sewer grates leading down into darkness, a small library where Sorrow picks up a copy of Weird Ways of the Western Orcish Tribes (the other books are written in a strange, unknown script), a chest containing a strange potion (Distilled Butterbush Leaves – a Potion of Healing) and a bag of gold, and a strangely barred room closed in by a bookshelf and a chair. Throwing the objects aside, the group charges in the final room to find a human female passed out on the floor. The revive her, and Keira joins the party.

Continuing upstairs, Davian successfully relieves two suits of armor of their fancy red feather plumes, and Keira summons Shadow, her Panther spirit companion. As Aldric opens the southeastern door, a stumbling corpse swathed in necrotic energy lurches toward him, and at his command another door opens, revealing two very large, very nasty spiders. Though Keira does fall momentarily, and everyone is considerably injured from the spider poison, the party defeats the creepy crawlies (and the zombie explodes in Davian’s face). The zombie was a wealthy scholar of some sort, and his footlocker contains a Content Not Found: robe-of-scintillation-1 and some more cash.

The party continues on up, finding more yummy plumes on two more suits of armor (and another bag of money). Atop the tower, the party encounters two more necrotic nasty walking corpses, this time clad in flowing robes of white. Psion Sorrow unceremoniously dumps one of them off the side of the tower, falling to its doom, and an enormous whirling burst of leaves and fire torches the other into a charred heap. In its cold, dead hand, the adventurers find a crumpled note in what Sorrow recognizes as Draconic. On its cold, dead head, the adventurers find a pair of really cool, blue glasses. Through the glasses, Sorrow detects a fine wire of necrotic energy being beamed into the bell from a warehouse down in the town, and the party considers how to leave this tower with no doors and no windows.

Fun Findings:

  • 70gp
  • Potion of Healing
  • 40gp
  • Robe of Scintillation
  • Arcanist’s Glasses
  • 200xp (each)
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A Town Outside Time
First Impressions Can Be Deceiving

Our adventure begins in the unseasonably warm springtime of Y.A. 721. Travelling north along the Heartline Road in southwestern Geador, a newly trained half-elf druid and his stalwart warforged companion make their way towards the forest town of Esham. Davian, newly trained by the druidic masters at the grove near Lake Mystuum, and Aldric (ALDC-78), his assigned guardian and protector, happen upon a lone tiefling camped along the Hearline Road in mid-morning, and question him as to why one tiefling needed three bedrolls. Sorrow, the tiefling, was perplexed from his apparently wild night and was unsure of who he bedded down with or why they were nowhere to be found. Regardless, they deduced that they had a common destination and decided to travel the road together toward Esham – now with five bedrolls. Aldric attempted to eat a breakfast of trail rations before realizing he did not in fact have a functioning digestive system.

The heroes made small talk as they walked, but the burdening heat soon became too much for Sorrow, his thick, hooded cloak nearly exhausting him completely. The party was forced to take a short rest beneath a shady tree along the path. This, and a few other short breaks delayed their progress. By late afternoon, the three adventurers crested a large hill overlooking a valley and were startled to see a small town which they did not expect to find, according to all of their maps. Heading into the town, there is no sign nor indication of what this town is or where it came from. Townspeople hustle and bustle about, never making eye contact with anyone, except for one lonely drunk in the middle of the plaza who calls out to the heroes on sight, warning them to leave and never return. They converse briefly, but before any answers can be given, a crossbow bolt from across the plaza strikes lovable Whiskey Bob in the stomach. Aldric and Sorrow help ease his passing a little bit, and he rewards you with a curious golden pocketwatch before passing and warning the party to be gone before the bell tolls twice. The watch is pristine and new on one side, yet corroded and worn from centuries of use on the other.

The party is torn, but before they can make a decision to stay or to go, the tall bell tower in the center of town rings out loudly, striking twice. Suddenly, the town is transformed. A shadow passes over the setting sun, leaving the town in a dusky twilight. The buildings suddenly turn from crisp, freshly whitewashed structures into rotting husks of a centuries-old ruin. The townspeople seem to be nowhere to be found, but as the group heads toward the tower and attempts to open the magical lock on the belfry (to electrifying consequences), a group of zombies and rotting dogs (or really big rats?) shamble towards them. The heroes dispatch them easily, and find among the bodies a runed key. Unfortunately, the key does not match the glowing runes on the padlock sealing the tower. At that time, Sorrow hears a noise from the inn across the square and everyone moves to peek in the window. More zombies are standing inside the inn watching the heroes, and the group charges in to do battle with them as well. Fortuitously, these zombies apparently held the key to the keep – well, truth be told, they probably just found it on the bar, but regardless, the group picks up the runed key after dispatching their foes and find a few treasures in the inn before heading back out into the street.

Found:

  • A curious golden pocketwatch
  • Three bottles of finely aged wine, vintage Y.A.601
  • One silver piece
  • A beautiful golden flute
  • 240 experience points each
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