Campaign of the Month: May 2016

Mysteria

A human in the dragon empire. Notes from Arcael's journal.

The city has its lights, senses and noises. They all will die in time.

Unlike I.

I will outlast them all, outgrow and destroy those who might rival or threaten me.

And I will destroy those who rise from the chaos of fire and ashes of their destruction too.

Fools build empires for protection. Fools think that power is the greatest legacy one can pass on. The dragons are fools. The undead of the Southlands are fools.

Empires are targets.

Targets for destruction from those with a greater hunger. The hunger to destroy is stronger than the hunger to defend.

To build a small invisible legacy, to control without the attention of enemies, THAT is the way forward.

I will teach my daughters this.

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The end of an agent.
Logged by stigandr

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Kamal Assante lay violently butchered, dead, Thoth’s judgement known, his protector necromancer too. Good. Undead were worse than vermin. Arcael’s arcane vision saw the glows of magic and enchantments upon the corpses, but one enchantment shone brightest…

‘The Scroll!’ Saabu roared, his face shining with wonder, his faith affirmed, knowledge and glory his, a secret of Thoth’s lore held within his hands.

The dark barbarian was cleaning his weapon, weakened from his rage, Goran likewise, cleaned his blades upon Assante’s tunic to write an insult in blood, but eyes alert to treasure. Gudin kicked the necromancer face up, the blade of her halberd ready to strike if the priest rose once more.

“Is it the real scroll? I’m tired of being threatened by kobolds.”

Saabu’s face was alive with religious joy, rapture, “Oh, yes, oh very yes!”

“Can you copy it?”

Saabu’s whiskers and ears were pointed forward, his hackles raised, his pupils huge, like a cat excited at a night, but this was him, alive to lore and magic, “Of course. Today comrades Thoth has truly blessed us.”

Arcael smiled for behind the N’kosi’s back Goran was miming an obscene act, showing contempt for Thoth, while the barbarian smirked.

“Good. Now let’s see how much treasure we can bleed from here.”

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Dock of The Bay
Bribery and Horror in the Port of Harkesh

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The group visit corrupt Night Harbour Master Ransitt Fishwater and pay 1,000 GP in bribe money, and a further 1,150 GP to book tickets on the next ship out to Nuria Natal. Arcael bravely investigates a magical stone on his own to find a monster waiting in disguise. Within seconds, mayhem erupts as Karn Gudin is paralysed and Saabu Theet, Goran and Arcael all start running in panicked terror, dropping daggers, staff and cocoa cup. Xavier, who is unaffected, tries to attack the invisible horror, but finds his weapons flailing without contact in the cool night air.

Saabu Theet uses his granted power of AVOID ANY SITUATION to return to his friends. Xavier picks up the dropped staff and daggers, leaving the smashed cocoa cup behind, and together they all Teleport to safety. Goran and Arcael remain invisible as they run through the town, and eventually all make it back to the house in the Triolan Quarter.

Business goes on, as the group try to locate the whereabouts of Kamal Assante, firstly with Xavier intervening on behalf of Ropemaster, Geddy Lee to apprehend a thief and have him “taken in” by the City Guard, and then with Karn Gudin entering a a sleazily seductive situation to ellicit more information from Ransitt’s brother, Tinky Fishwater during an uncomfortable “bedtime cocoa” episode with Tinky, that Xavier is trying hard to forget, but nonetheless ended up costing 500 GP in favour of a lady’s honour.

At the Guesthouse of Mahershala Ali, the group meet Olive Oil, a trader from Reth-Saal, and old seadog, Peter Popeye. They also meet the housekeeper, Mr Swing and find a secret door. Goran, who is skulking invisibly around the house, decides not to enter the secret door and instead the group retreat to plan a night time return, just one night before the ship for Nuria Natal is about to sail.

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It's True!
The continuing search for Kamal Assante

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After an attack by a group of rogues operating under the name of Free Jambuk, Arcael and Goran managed to establish that the opportunists had heard about them through candle drake spies at The Black Nurian. After answering questions in return for his freedom, aparently, their captive, Nipper O’Neil took his own life to avoid the shame. Saabu Theet nodded. “Must have been a very proud thief,” he thought.

Just then, Truman Click arrived at the scene with the news that the Crimson Worm was in danger of destroying their house and all their gems. [From outside the world, a guy called Graeme spotted a giant plot hook.] Arcael Dimension Doored into the house to save the treasure, while Xavier strode right up to the worm without a fear, being chomped and swallowed whole, and almost dying. [Jeez, that guy can survive almost anything.] Karn Gudin flew into the air to deliver potent acid attacks. Soon, the sorcerer Captain Boris Yeltsin and eight Edjet lieutenants arrived to aid with fireballs, acid and crossbows. The worm was destroyed and the house was saved.

The scroll dealing neighbours, grateful that their house had not been destroyed, gave Saabu Theet some very rare green parchment. He recognised its worth. [Possibly, another plot hook was spotted!} Then, off to the meeting with Shylock. He seemed affable, and gave The Oooze a good descriptioin of Kamal Assante, but like most others they had met, did not seem to know where he was.

Back at The Black Nurian, they engaged with Mustapha Ibrahim while Goran secretly ransacked his room for information. Outside of their world, a guy called Gordon rolled a DOUBLE ZERO on percentile dice!] By the good fortune granted to him by SARASTRA, Goran discovered some highly secret documents, alluding to the fact that Ibrahim was a secret agent of The Emerald Order. Time for a very frank chat….

After discussing the issue with Mustapha, the group learned that Assante already had the scrolls and was waiting for a ship to take him to Nuria Natal. The Oooze decided to visit a corrupt harbour master late at night to try and find out records of when the next ship to Nuria Natal was due to sail…..

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Ouroborous Stirs!
Golden City Devastated by Killer Quake!

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The imperial city of Harkesh came to a standstill yesterday as mayhem erupted in an earthquake of epic proportions, damaging many parts of the city and leaving large sectors of the population dead or injured.

The catastrophe happened around 7pm yesterday evening, ripping large cracks in the ground, destroying many imperial buildings and causing death and misery throughout large areas of our beautiful metropolis. It is thought that most castes, from Akinji downwards, have taken heavy casualties, although thankfully, the largest number of deaths have been among the Jambuka, whose soft skins do not offer much protection against falling buildings.

At least 3,000 citizens have been killed, with over 2,000 of these being Jambuka. Thankfully, no Morza or Urmanli have suffered greatly, although the wing of one of the great Harbour Dragons was damaged by flying debris.

Amazingly, the Imperial Palace of the Eight Elements was left unscathed, and Dread Sultan Ozmir al-Stragul was untouched. “No force of Nature will disrupt our war effort”, he decreed.

To add misery to mayhem, the earthquake also opened the way to an attack of monsters from the Uunderdark. At least five Crimson Worms have been reported, but all of these have been dealt with by our illustrious forces. Other creatures may have come up to the surface and the public are being warned to stay away from any creatures they are unfamiliar with, and to report these immediately to the Authorities.

Deep Dragon Contsable, Temnyy Rystar, says he is patrolling the city and identifying and destroying these entities as he finds them. He says he is in consultation with the Most Glorious Satarah al-Beldestani who has already promised a squadron of her giant guards to help rebuild the city.

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The Black Pearl in Motion
A very busy time...

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The group is visited by Captain Boris Yeltsin and Xavier offers poor equivocation as to the nature of the GOD SLAYING tattoos.
New business venture named as THE BLACK PEARL
Stall set up in The Grand Bazaar
Saabu Theet finds some good scroll dealers but balks at the price of black ink in Harkesh
Some chatting takes place in The Black Nurian
Karn Gudin may have “spooked” Mustapha Ibrahim with some probing questions
Goran takes a definite “WRONG TURN” in Seggotan’s Rear
Arcael finds Mr Tommy Visconti to be somewhat distateful
Krispy Dacon helps to ease tensions with Vasili Volti and Goran is released
Following a lead from a message slipped under the door, Arcael and The Oooze set out for Scallywag’s Alley to find Shylock
Alas! A trap is sprung by “a parcel of rogues”, with the fight interrupted by an earthquake and the emergence of a dreadful Crimson Worm.

The adventure continues….

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Faith
The secretive promotion of Truman Click

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Truman Click had been a faithful friend of Arcael since the early days, in a time even before the others. Oh, how he remembered those first practice sessions with Arcael’s first band, “Schmidt Happens”. Since that time, he had travelled much, and had fought in the Canton Wars of Templeforge and Hammerfell; but always he had served his Goddess RAVA proudly.

Now, as he received his Orcale promotion in the presence of visiting priestess Alltick Linn, and the ever present, Mungo al-Gonga, his pride swelled once again, even though his symbols were decorated in the shapes of AZURAN OF THE NORTHERN WIND. It had taken him a few years to get used to that, but now, the vile utterances of the Dragon God were almost second nature to him.

His new Mystery spell was “Breath of Life”, but for his chosen spell, he neglected “Raise Dead”, feeling that his comrade, Saabu Theet really had that scope covered. Instead, he chose “Life Bubble” – a useful group spell, he thought, although deep down he knew that his times with the group would be limited. Someone had to maintain a presence at the market place.

At the end of the ceremony, Truman Click took out his flute and played. Some say it was the sweetest sound ever heard in the Scriptorium of Thoth-Hermes.

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Release Release!
After more time in The Ghetto, the TRADE PERMITS arrive.

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Arcael and the Oooze endure more hardships in the New Foreigners’ Ghetto. Place Holders in the queue are delayed for Not Bowing in the Presence of the Commissioner and things appear grim indeed until a secret night message from Truman Click offers a way out through the intervention of The Cold Diggers Union in return for a service. The group readily accept and the candle drake messenger carries the message back to their comrade outside the ghetto.

Goran is taken ill and moved to the infirmary and Karn Gudin is released, but the bothersome trollkin, Big Winnie accuses Arcael of molestation and demands JUSTICE!. A bout in the Arena is held the following day, with Xavier, now returned from the infirmary, chosen as the group’s gladiatorial representative. The loser will have to clean the Ghetto toilets for a week! Yeuurch! The group’s champion pounds the trollkin into unconsiousness within seconds and Saabu Theet channels energy under the false guise of AZURAN OF THE WESTERN WIND to bring Big Winnie back to consiousness. They all follow her to the toilets to gloat…and even add a few “nuggets” to the mess.

With the help of The Cold Diggers Union, the party eventually get their TRADE PERMITS and make their way to the Triolan Quarter, where they meet Krispy Dacon to learn of the service they must complete to repay their debt. "Get the scroll that Mustapha Ibrahim gives to Kamal Assante! But who IS Kamal Assante? Nobody seems to know….

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In the Ghetto
The wait for Trade Permits is often long and frequently delayed.

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Arcael and The Oooze leave The Nautilus to start their long and painful induction in the New Foreigners’ Ghetto to await issue of their Trade Permits. All visiting Jambuka must endure this arduous process, but surprisingly, by some trumped up theft charge, the Edjet Dragonkin Karn Gudin is detained as well. “Most irregular!” Xavier, the barbarian, has been taken ill and has been forcably moved to the infirmary.

Rosa Klebb and her kobold servant Onzeen Orbeyes welcome the party and read out the Law of the Ghetto, a list of possible crimes and misdemeanours designed for easy arrest warrants. Some of these charges carry the Death Penalty, but most are dealt with by the Kangaroo Court of Delilah Ali, with punishments geared towards endless delay.

The group witness the severe punishment of Bingo the Gnome, meet a few unsavoury types like the trollkin, Big Winnie, who seems to take a strong dislike towards both Arcael and Goran; and Saabu Theet pretends to the worship of AZURAN (since the worship of non dragon gods carries the Death Penalty). Goran is arrested twice, once for “Disrespecting a Reptile” and the other for “Snivelling”. Karn Gudin turns out to be an excellent court representative in the halls of Delilah Ali, but the party are still detained for thirty days.

In the end of the session, violent rivalry with a group of Fanatical Devotees of LADA ends in conflict, with the party the victors, and the Priests of Lada awaiting judgement in the court. The wait continues…

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Arrival
A transference of information at the New Foreigner's Ghetto

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Dragonkin Akinji Officer Rex Khan is an expert broker of information stationed in the harbour and responsible for the gathering of information pertaining to all new intakes. He always reports directly to Rosa Klebb at each new intake of applicants moving through the induction process of the New Foreigner’s Ghetto.

Rosa Klebb: The usual bunch of odious hopefuls, I suppose?
Rex Khan: I’ve recommended an enterprising kobold to bypass the Ghetto and be conscripted straight away onto one of the warships leaving for Kyprion today.
Rosa Klebb: Unorthodox.
Rex Khan: Do you doubt me?
Rosa Klebb: Never.
Rex Khan: Splinter’s the name. We need sailors like him for the war effort.
Rosa Klebb: Anything else?
Rex Khan: Keep an eye on a bunch of Jambuka that came in on The Nautilus with a returning Edjet trader. I’m told they are famous musicians from Zobeck, and yet they handled themselves a bit too well fighting a stowaway vampire, from what I hear. I’ll be getting a full report from Captain Gillsnapper later.
Rosa Klebb: What do you know of the returning Edjet?
Rex Khan: Not much. Triolan resident is all. Why don’t you detain her with the others for a while?
Rosa Klebb: Detain a returning Edjet? That is unorthodox!
Rex Khan: Some disciplinary issue should do the trick. In the meantime, I’ll set up someone in the Lizard League to investigate her history. Maybe nothing. But best just to check.
Rosa Klebb: Anything else.
Rex Khan: Not really. But I would also watch out for that gnome, Bingo.
Rosa Klebb: Pureblood?
Rex Khan: I think so.
Rosa Klebb: Don’t worry. I’ll have him “questioned severely”.
Rex Khan: Good Day, Ma’am!
Rosa Klebb: Good…. oh, he’s gone….

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