The Mountains of Morpheus

Session 14: The Ashoumite Catacombs, part two

Overview

The player characters (PCs) rested in the city of Strigis after their scuffle with the dwarvish kidnappers, Riswoan and Leira. However, Cicero’s messenger Rachel requested they return to the chapel at which they had discovered those same kidnappers, to talk to the Ashoumite priest who had given them shelter. This is the same chapel that led to a portion of the Ashoumite catacombs beneath Strigis.

The old priest, a Brother Benedict, made a proposition to the PCs. Before they encountered him, he had given Riswoan and Leira access to the Ashoumite catacombs, so that they could plunder what riches — possibly conventional treasure, but also undiscovered scrolls and texts — lay within them. However, Riswoan and Leira had seemed to stall on this task, instead resorting to kidnapping and hiding their victims in the catacombs in order to get rich quick. (It was unclear to Benedict why they had chosen to kidnap Marcus, but Marcus may have hidden wartime spoils of his own in the city, possibly in the catacombs.) It was previously agreed, between the priest and the dwarves, that they would equally divide the treasure. Now that agreement is rendered null, seeing as how the dwarves are in the custody of the Magistrate of Strigis.

Therefore, Brother Benedict offered to make a similar agreement with the PCs: they would search through the catacombs for treasure, evenly splitting their gains with Benedict. Such a task now must be very quickly accomplished, as Benedict heard word that, now that Lord Arawn knows of an entrance into the Ashoumite catacombs, he will be sending masons and soldiers to seal up the entrance below the chapel. Brother Benedict predicted that these men would arrive just before dawn, giving the PCs about 12 hours to explore the catacombs. Traversing the catacombs is no easy task, according to Benedict. They are inhabited by “Vengeful Ones” — the spectral ghosts of Ashoumites, the effects of whose enervating touch can last for weeks. The Vengeful Ones also use ghouls and zombies — less powerful, corporeal undead — to do their bidding. A Vengeful One called “the Antiquarian” keeps various treasures and tomes in its lair in the catacombs, and should be the Vengeful One that the PCs target. Vengeful Ones are resistant to physical damage, but can be most effectively damaged by some spells, and by holy water.

In addition, Marcus requested that the PCs retrieve the body of his lover, Reena. Benedict also gave the PCs a specific pathway to reach the Antiquarian’s lair. Straying from this path could lead the PCs into segments of the catacombs dwelt by gangs of Vengeful Ones too numerous for the PCs to overcome.

The PCs wasted little time in arming themselves, and borrowing a few vials of holy water from Brother Benedict. They fought through two packs of ghouls and zombies (including a single Vengeful One), as well as a large gargoyle in the shape of an angel. They also defeated the minions of the Antiquarian, leaving his own destruction to one of his own spectral rivals. At the end of the day, the Antiquarian’s treasures were looted, and the PCs fled the catacombs to return them to Benedict, while discussing how to find Reena.

Details

Janduin left the PCs to serve Lord Arawn, effectively taking full credit for rescuing Marcus. (Not a selfish decision, seeing as how the Prince had forbidden entry into the catacombs.) Pip also left the PCs, accompanying Janudin. Araceli behaved very boorishly to Janduin and Rachel.

The PCs encountered several oddities in the catacombs: (1) They encountered and quickly destroyed a torpid ghoul, which according to Benedict may have been a ghoul in the process of “becoming;” (2) They encountered, interrogated, and permitted to flee a lone ghoul; (3) They encountered the preserved corpse of a gnoll; (4) They encountered relatively recent (perhaps by one month) remains of a young human, suggesting past entry into the catacombs; (5) They released a Vengeful One named Marva, apparently sealed in a magical clay jar. Marva claimed that unlike the other Vengeful Ones in the catacombs, she was a worshiper of the pagan goddess Hecate, and was thus imprisoned by the Antiquarian, her “nemesis.” While Marva took a rather flexible (and grandiose) approach to the truth, she aided the PCs against the Antiquarian, splitting its treasure with them.

Inventory

The party spent:

  • Several of their mushrooms of healing

The party gained:

  • Two doses of holy water, from Brother Benedict
  • A sum of fabulous treasure, in the form of old Ashoumite scrolls and texts, and a pile of old, battered gold and silver coins, and a rather sturdy treasure chest.
  • A strange, apparently unmagical cube of lumber, one foot in breadth.
  • A scroll of magic weapon, a scroll of lesser restoration.
  • A portrait (four by three feet), framed in brass, of a handsome, middle-aged woman; identity if any unclear.
  • A human skull, with a small emerald pressed within a niche carved into its forehead.

The party’s adventuring bill for this session is 4 gp: a bit higher than usual, thanks to money spent investigating in the slums. (This sum was not accounted for last section, so is repeated here.)

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Session 13: The Ashoumite Catacombs, part one

Overview

The player characters (PCs) continued to discuss future steps, eventually deciding on offering their services to the Old Faith in the city of Strigis, thus able to investigate Rohfa and her vanar vadrana, while being adequately compensated by an organization. Cicero was successful in scheduling a meeting with the Temple Ilendra, the city’s premier Old Faith temple, with the PCs set to discuss matters on Wednesday, December 2, with the temple’s High Druid, Nestoria Winters. In the meantime, the PCs ran a few errands. They were also acquainted with a paladin in service of the Temple Ilendra, a noble’s son named Conrad.

During the same night, Janduin met by chance an old soldiering comrade named Levon. Levon told him that Janduin’s friend and comrade, a soldier named Marcus, had gone missing during the riots of the previous today. It had seemed that Marcus had fallen in love with a prostitute named Reena working in the city’s west-side slums, and took advantage during the frenzy of the riot to attack Reena’s pimp, a man named Waylan.

Although it had seemed possible that Waylan had, in turn, injured or killed Marcus, the PCs found through their investigations (involving Waylan himself) that Marcus had in fact been ambushed by a small band of ruffians led by a dwarvish warrior. Reena herself had also gone missing a few days before this attack. The PCs, though briefly deterred, were able to track down these ruffians to the White Light Chapel, an Ashoumite haven for the slum’s destitute and lost. Though it seemed unclear why an elderly Ashoumite might allow criminals and kidnappers to roost in his poor chapel, the PCs instigated a scuffle. The ruffians — a male dwarf named Riswoan, and a female dwarf priestess named Leira — relented, being outnumbered. They offered to allow the PCs to rescue Marcus and Reena, whom they had kidnapped and stowed away in a segment of the Ashoumite catacombs beneath the city, the entrance to which lay beneath the chapel.

The Ashoumite catacombs were, according to Leira, walled off from the rest of Strigis’s subterranean world, all of which was forbidden to Strigis’s denizens by Princely degree. In pursuit of Marcus, the PCs, with Riswoan and Leira, trekked briefly through the catacombs. They were beset by “Vengeful Ones,” which were according to Leira Ashoumite spirits; in the ensuing combat, the PCs defeated the spirits, with Riswoan and Leira’s aid.

In the catacombs, behind an illusory wall, the PCs discovered Reena, dead from mutilation and torture. Marcus was alive, chained and also tortured. When pressed for an explanation, Riswoan simply said that he had wanted to get rich. Reneging on their agreement — that they would release Riswoan and Leira in exchange for their assistance against the Vengeful Ones — the PCs pummeled the kidnappers into submission. Morgran healed Marcus, and Janduin delivered the solider and criminals to the nearest of the Magistrate’s soldiers.

Being agents of order and justice, the Magistrate’s soldiers briefly detained the PCs to record their testimony. Gaining little from deceit, the PCs complied, turning over the kidnappers. The next morning, Janduin was summoned to the Fortress Strigia, the city’s principal government and military stronghold. The former solider was sternly welcomed by the Sky-born Lord Count Aneth Arawn, from the kingdom of Kala Anar, conqueror of the city of Strigis.

Lord Arawn chastised Janduin for flouting his decree that none should enter the Ashoumite catacombs. He congratulated Janduin for his heroics. He gave Janduin an offer to serve his lord and kingdom once again …

Details

Cevei showed Constansia Pasolini, the High Wizard of the Strigis Wizards’ Society, the “demonic” nightjar-parasite that the PCs discovered in their travels. Constansia preserved the creature’s decaying corpse, showing Cevei a tome on demons describing the parasite. She said that it could be some otherworldly creature summoned by magicians, to use as a weapon against other magicians. Although she was, at present, unable to aid the PCs in their investigation of this creature, she advised Cevei to return in a few weeks, when she could potentially give him a useful lead.

The PCs paid the Strigis Wizards Society to restore the Griffin Shield: a down payment of 160 gp, with another 160 gp to be paid upon the task’s completion. The Society pledged to complete restoration in about three weeks. This agreement was observed and recorded by the Society.

The PCs visited several of the slum’s seedy, decadent taverns, including the Silver Knife, the Hungry Boar, and the Goblyn. (Although Strigis’s slums are the poorest, most crowded portion of the city, the average slum-dweller lives about as well as the average peasant, and probably eats better. The area is probably better described as seedy, colorful, and vice-ridden rather than destitute.) At the last establishment, they sampled “goblin-wine,” a sort of drug-alcohol recently imported from Kala Anar, the kingdom to the west that now enjoys hegemony over Strigis. It’s dark red, sticky, thick, strong, and when drunk to excess creates weird hallucinations: the feeling of dizziness, and the perception of strange, blurry little men standing at the corners of one’s sight.

The Ashoumite catacombs are filled with numerous niches in the walls, in which Ashoumites likely stored corpses. Most of these columbaria are empty, but the PCs did notice that one was not: it seemed to contain a person or corpse with a heavy blanket thrown over it. The PCs speculated that it was some kind of undead creature, as the being was visibly moving beneath the blanket, as if a restless sleeper.

Inventory

The party spent:

  • 26 gp, purchasing goblin-wine.

The party’s adventuring bill for this session is 4 gp: a bit higher than usual, thanks to money spent investigating in the slums.

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Session 12: Crossways, part two

Overview

The PCs rested in the town of Wyvern’s Eye for three days, recuperating from their travails in the Mountains of Morpheus. They discussed events with Merissa and Daria, as well as sold some of their loot acquired in their adventures. Merissa noted that there were other sites in the Mountains of Morpheus that may be relevant to the PCs:

  • Another mystical sect was located in the Mountains, about 50 miles north of the Circle of Pines. The Sect of Hades was located in Dancingwood, a shriveled and dead forest. The sect practiced a “dark druidism,” bent on fusing plants and fungi with corpses, creating bizarre amalgams of the living and dead to serve them. Merissa knew little of their intentions or status, however. The sect had their own “hidden temple,” possibly much larger and vaster than her sect’s.
  • A “temple of storms” located southeast of the Circle of Pines. This temple was created by the Orvahii, some pre-human race that built numerous dungeons and temples in the Mountains of Morpheus ages ago. The temple was considered a nexus of elemental energies, though Merissa knows little about its actual purpose, if any. Rohfa stored some relics and books in this temple, and was able to reach it through_ wild shape_, turning into a bird. The temple is also guarded and inhabited by a bronze dragon, of unknown age and power.

They reached the city of Strigis one week later, relating their exploits to Cicero. Cicero seemed surprised at some of the events, and explained the situation to the best of his ability:

  • Before the war, the former Prince of Strigis had an alliance with the Sect of Indigo. Cicero acted as a liaison between the two groups, thanks to his friendship with Rohfa. After the war, the Sect of Indigo became disconnected. Cicero sought to make contact with them in order to broker a possible alliance between and Lord Count Arawn, a high-ranking nobleman in the Strigis’s new regime. However, Cicero hoped that the Sect would make its own (informed) decision — hence his desire for discretion.
  • Cicero understands that the druidic relic, Marten’s Right Hand, has powerful divinatory capabilities when brought into conjunction with its companion relics, Marten’s Skull and Marten’s Flesh. These relics were intentionally scattered about five years ago, for reasons unclear to Cicero. Rohfa gave Marten’s Right Hand to Cicero, and instructed him to return it in a time of need.
  • Cicero did not intend to manipulate the PCs into an undesirable position, though he did ensure their discretion. Now that the PCs have relayed news of the sect’s destruction, and of Rohfa’s condition, he considers all debts between him and the PCs cleared.

Cicero desires the PCs to locate and rescue his friend Rohfa from this “Chaotic Transformation,” but is at a loss as how to pursue this task. His contacts across Strigis are extensive, but mystical knowledge isn’t his forte. He proposed several alternatives of alliance: with no one, with the Old Faith temple in Strigis, or with Lord Arawn himself. The PCs seemed most inclined toward the second option.

Why the Sect of Indigo was destroyed remains a mystery. The PCs and Cicero speculated that someone — perhaps a powerful member of the aristocracy — sought to destroy the sect in order to prevent it from being used by Lord Arawn. Cicero supposed that a Lady Countess Ombrea, equal in rank to Lord Arawn but a rival to him, could have sent such marauders. There is no evidence for such designs, but then again, the Countess’s abilities of subterfuge and concealment are supposedly remarkable.

Details

On the way to Strigis, the PCs were detained by several soldiers acting in Baron di Zhatto’s name. A violent altercation ensued, but surprisingly, no one of either party died, as Morgran healed the brunt of the injuries the soldiers suffered. It remained, apparently, ambiguous as to whether the soldiers detained the PCs in good faith, or simply sought to extort them. It remains unclear to the PCs, however, whether the soldiers will identify the PCs as violent criminals, or simply keep mum about the incident due to humiliation.

There were riots in Strigis on the day of the PCs’ arrival. They were thus made to wait outside the city for a whole night.

Inventory

The party gained:

  • 150 sp each, from Cicero.

The party’s adventuring bill for this session is 0 gp, as Cicero has managed to cover the PCs’ expenses this session.

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Session 11: Crossways, part one

Overview

The PCs returned from the Mountains of Morpheus to the kingdom of Strigis, meandering through the countryside in search of safe, anonymous shelter, and routes toward answers to questions they have barely begun to articulate. They briefly liaised with the bandit-rebels near St. Hermos, and dropped off Merissa at the Old Faith temple of the town of Wyvern’s Eye. With the temple’s High Druid, Daria Levano, they discussed some possibilities of solving the problem of locating Rohfa’s Chaotic Transformation, as well as issue of how to “restore” her.

Daria offered to send out contacts to find more information about both points, as well as liaising with an urban sect in Kasha’s Watch about Marten’s Skull, a companion relic to Marten’s Right Hand. Daria advised that one of the more knowledgeable mystics in the sect is a Leo Underwood. However, Underwood is believed to serve as an advisor to Lord Cyrus Brixia, a local-level lord and vassal to Baron Sata. It may be possible, however, to locate sources of advice in urban Strigis … especially if more informed persons such as Cicero are involved.

Details

The PCs, near the South Pass, encountered an insane traveler, claiming the presence of “demons” among the party, as well as the possibly imminent end of the world. He made demands to view the party unclothed, as well as examine their belongings. He seemed especially disturbed by Cevei’s bizarre insect-parasite, found within the whip-poor-will. It was not long before the PCs tired of his unreasonable demands, and pummeled him, and left. Merissa speculated that he was a Malkavian, but could not be sure.

Inventory

The party gained:

  • About 12 gp from the wandering madman.

The party spent:

  • A typical mushroom-potion of healing

The party’s adventuring bill for this session is 10 gp, or 2 gp for each PC.

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Session G-5: The Rescue of Summer Eyes

Overview

The player characters fought further through Cicero’s dungeon, slaying the wizard’s pet mimics and mephits, until they at last reached the locked cell holding Summer Eyes, their captured comrade. The PCs wasted little time in escaping Cicero’s tower, fleeing for home: the Mountains of Morpheus …

Storm-Eye stole a small portion of Cicero’s project: the portion concerned with “curing” the gnoll condition. It seems that Cicero’s research was at best partial, and he was never wholly successful in his experiments to transform a gnoll into a mortal. However, it did seem that Summer Eyes was deeply confused about his memory, at times expressing doubt over whether he “belonged” in the Mountains of Morpheus.

The core PCs — Araceli, Cevei, Janduin, Morgran, and Pip woke from uneasy dreams of their adventures as gnolls. It remains unclear to them how much of what transpired — if any — was the actions of others, and how much was fantasy. Certainly it struck them as suspicious that their “enemies” shared the same names as Cicero and Rofa …

Inventory

The core PCs gained:

  • A small, rough, raw, dark crimson garnet.
  • A fancy-looking, well crafted wood and iron trident.
  • A spell scroll of guiding bolt.
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Session G-4: The White Chalice

Overview

The player characters traveled to Khrysmnara to investigate the “White Chalice,” where they found reason to believe in a connection between it and their captured comrade, Summer Eyes. They cautiously traveled west from Lil’ Badger, refusing to heed Rofa’s demands that they return to the Mountains of Morpheus.

Along the way, the PCs conversed with a local Ashoumite priest, posing as devout pilgrims seeking a “White Chalice.” The priest suggested to them that perhaps they were confused, for such an item may refer to the legend of St. Albano quelling the rage and hunger of a dragon, accomplished by giving it a drink of holy water from a white chalice. In this legend, the dragon then renounces evil, accepts God, and leaves the mortals it once terrorized in peace. Walks-without-Sound and Strongest Son surmised that the White Chalice could simply be a symbol of some project to “cure” gnolls.

The PCs later came upon a lone rider galloping in their opposite direction: quite possibly from Khrysmnara to Lil’ Badger. When the PCs hailed her, she attempted to evade their questions, then flee. When the PCs fought and subdued this woman, a wizard named Svenka, they learned that she was a member of the “White Chalice” project, serving an accomplished wizard named Cicero. Before killing her and taking her keys, the PCs tortured her and learned that Cicero’s tower was located a few miles south of the town of Khysmnara.

Around this time, Bru began to feel disoriented, his mortal personality resurfacing. The PCs psychically communicated with their leaders in the Mountains of Morpheus, and were advised to continue to attempt to rescue Summer Eyes and destroy any mortal project that would attempt to reverse the gnoll condition. They were also advised to give Bru some personal space.

After some furtive spying, the PCs discovered that Cicero’s tower seemed lightly guarded — likely relying more on secrecy than force for protection. Using Svenka’s keys, the PCs simply forced their way into the tower, defeating its occupants (two mephits, two sentries, and another wizard named Jina), and capturing Cicero. They also got their hands on much of Cicero’s written research, and began to study it, though expected to destroy most if not all of it.

Interrogating Cicero, they discovered that Summer Eyes was kept in a dungeon beneath the tower. The PCs traveled partway through the dungeon with the wizard, but were ambushed by mimics: one disguised as a clay jar, one disguised as a bookcase, and one disguised as a chair. Morning-Killer struck Cicero down, and the PCs (being battered and exhausted) fled the dungeon, hoping to rescue Summer Eyes at another time …

Inventory

The party gained:

  • Svenka’s items; some gold, a wand used as an arcane focus;
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Session G-3: Rampage through the Hills

Overview

The player characters (PCs) recovered from yesterday’s setback by exchanging the warlock Marlow for their companion, Walks-without-Sound. During his captivity, Marlow spoke of the “White Chalice,” where Summer Eyes was being delivered. However, he could not specify details. Morning-Killer attempted to use legend lore to find information on the White Chalice, but the magic failed.

Shortly after the exchange, the PCs were tipped off one one of Lady Cremona’s soldiers. She intimated that Lady Cremona had gotten involved with the White Chalice, and that this is something sinister, evil, unholy, and magical, possibly with wizards involved. She told the PCs that the White Chalice (whatever that is) could be found in the nearby small town of Khrysmnara, and that someone named Cicero was involved.

It is presently the morning of Monday, November 2.

Details

The PCs hired a local goon, Lucius, to help them with the lay of the land. This was useful, as Lucius knew of a local family that had a cache of weapons scavenged after the Wheat-Harvest War. The PCs quickly moved to steal the family’s weapons, armor, and gold.

The PCs stored Marlow inside an abandoned, isolated chapel of the pagan god Talos. They slew its original occupant, an undead creature.

Inventory

The party gained:

  • About 25 gp, and 80 sp;
  • Three longswords, two battleaxes, a greatsword, a trident;
  • Two light crossbows;
  • A set of leather armor, studded leather armor, hide armor, and a chain shirt.

The party paid Lucius:

  • About 30 gp, and a longsword.
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Session G-2: The Harvest Festival on Lady Cremona's Land

Overview

The player characters (PCs) followed their best lead — a barbarian warrior in the employ of a Lady Cremona, master of several villages west of Kasha’s Watch, who was instrumental in capturing Summer Eyes — to the village of Lil’ Badger. They asked the locals about how they might humbly present themselves to Lady Cremona, though many peasants were busy harvesting wheat and preparing for the harvest festival.

As Bishop, Lady Cremona’s seneschal and advisor, entered the village to prepare for the harvest festival, the PCs presented themselves as modest knights-errant looking for a master to serve. Bishop and his retinue — including “Rofa the Heartless,” the barbarian warrior — were intrigued, and agreed to allow the PCs to serve as security for the harvest festival, though their larger weapons and armor would have to be kept in Lady Cremona’s castle, and they would be forbidden from using magic.

As an afterthought, Bishop also instructed one of his warlocks, a man named Marlow, to use detect magic on the group. Marlow had to cast detect magic as a ritual, leaving him, a servant named Marcus, and the five PCs relatively alone at the edge of the village. Beginning to panic — for detect magic would reveal their disguise — the PCs attacked Marlow, capturing him and Marcus. They fled as quickly as possible, being chased by Rofa and her soldiers, and Walks-without-Sound was captured.

Strongest Son, Storm-Eye, and Morning-Killer interrogated Marlow in the empty night countryside. Marlow confessed that he was largely ignorant of why Lady Cremona sought to capture a gnoll, though he did indeed accompany Rofa the Heartless in capturing Summer Eyes. Marlow mentioned something about “the White Chalice,” but was too ignorant to explain what it might be. Marlow was eager to convince the PCs of the wisdom of conducting a prisoner exchange, and even attempted to aid the PCs in such an endeavor.

Marlow also stated that the original gnoll (Summer Eyes) was no longer in Lady Cremona’s possession, and … well, “delivered to the White Chalice.”

It is presently the morning of Sunday, November 1.

Details

At an inn in Northwater, the PCs encountered a Malkavian — a person driven mad by Morpheus’s Grip. He ranted about people coming from the east, the “Mountains’ taking back what they’re owed,” and someone named Cicero.

The PCs met some kind of traveling salesman on the road to Lil’ Badger. He fairly sold them two healing kits.

Inventory

The party bought:

  • Healing kits.

The party lost:

  • Any weapon larger than a short sword, including their bows and arrows;
  • Their armor of medium or heavier;
  • Anything on Walks-without-Sound’s person;
  • Walks-without-Sound’s horse.
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Session G-1: The Search for Summer Eyes

Overview

The player characters (PCs), a party of gnolls — Storm-Eye the warlock, Morning-Killer the ranger, Walks-without-Sound the druid, Bru the barbarian, and Strongest Son the knight — in the Mountains of Morpheus, conducted a routine patrol through the forests of Fangwood. They found evidence of a party of mortal adventurers traveling through the Mountains at the behest of a patron, a Lord Brixia, to survey the area. The PCs ambushed the five adventurers, killing the dwarf but successfully capturing the rest.

The PCs returned to the gnoll stronghold in western Fangwood, where they were congratulated by one of their leaders, an older gnoll mystic called Shining Snow, on their success. Shining Snow and the PCs interrogated the adventurers, but found little that concerned them, and thus imprisoned them to eventually transform them into gnolls. On the same day, Shining Snow apprised the PCs of a concerning matter: two patrol groups of gnolls have recently been attacked, and one gnoll has been captured, by a band of mortal adventurers.

The testimony of Leaf, a gnoll who survived the second attack, states that a band of mortal warriors fought his group, and intentionally captured one gnoll, named Summer Eyes. They were led by a powerful barbarian warrior who fought “with the strength of three men.” Shining Snow’s scrying confirms that Summer Eyes is still alive, and may be in one of the mortal cities or larger towns. Fortunately, Leaf and Summer Eyes did slay one of the mortals, and Leaf, who fled the battle, later retrieved the dead man’s backpack.

The PCs and Shining Snow reviewed the contents of the backpack: A large chunk of spicy cheese, a locket containing the sketch of a young woman, an Ashoumite icon of St. Rabinus, and a few love letters between the man (presumably “Marius”) and his lover (“Elena”). The PCs gleaned from the letters that the two were to meet in the small town of Northwater during the popular harvest festivals, usually occurring between October 31 and November 1.

Aided with Shining Snow’s gnoll-masks, the PCs wasted little time in entering mortal society and investigating, though they violently raided a village and stole a horse for each of them. At Northwater, they spoke to some of the locals, and eventually encountered a woman with Elena’s likeness by chance at an outdoors theater. Walks-without-Sound confronted her with the bad news that Marius had likely perished in the Mountains of Morpheus, though it seemed like Elena already suspected such news.

Elena said that Marius and his companions — led by a barbarian warrior possibly serving a Lady Cremona — were for some reason tasked to enter the Mountains of Morpheus, though she did not know why. The PCs were more or less satisifed wtih this lead, and let Elena be.

It is presently the evening of Friday, October 30.

Details

The PCs understand that in this region of Strigis (the Kasha’s Watch area, in the barony of Kasha’s Watch, ruled by the Lord Baron Adrian di Zhatto), tensions between the two mainstream religions, the monotheistic Ashoum and the druidic Old Faith, are often high. Such tensions sometimes break out in violence during the autumn harvest festivals, which have their root in Old Faith traditions. Street fighting or even a small riot is not unexpected.

Inventory

The party gained from Rudolphus’s party:

  • About 50 gp;
  • Two common potions of healing;
  • A rough, crimson garnet;
  • A high-quality longsword.
    The party also gained:
  • Five gnoll-masks;
  • FIve fairly good horses.
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Session 10: The Hidden Temple, Part three

Overview

The player characters (PCs) continued their investigation throughout the Sect of Indigo’s Hidden Temple, and eventually came across a closet containing a number of magical items: mushroom-potions, the pilgrim’s buddy, and the icon of St. Poythora. However, their searching was interrupted by a pair of Guardians of the Deep, one of them apparently the creature they had fought at the temple’s entrance. This temple, the PCs managed to negotiate a truce. The Guardians of the Deep took Araceli and Pip on a brief tour throughout the temple, but were not forthcoming with information. After some negotiation, the Guardians agreed to allow the PCs to meet with the sole surviving druid in the temple: A woman named Merissa Doving, who had been left paraplegic from the attack.

The PCs shared the information that Rohfa is still somewhere, caught in what Merissa described as a “Chaotic Transformation,” or a vanar vadrana: a sort of subconscious, sleep-walking state where one transforms from form to form, acting out violent urges. Merissa asked for a way to be returned to the kingdom of Strigis, and potentially find a way to save Rohfa. What that entails, however, is a matter of discussion …

The PCs were allowed to take Merissa with them, as well as take several of the Hidden Temple’s magical items: what they found earlier, as well as the fretted axe and a set of splint mail. In exchange, they fought and destroyed the remaining shadows that haunted the temple.

Details

The PCs also encountered one of Merissa’s friends, a large, hulking man, who opted to leave the Hidden Temple as well: not with the PCs, but setting out alone into the world. Merissa explained that this person, “Lock,” is a mimic.

The Guardians of the Deep are bound to the space of the Hidden Temple, and are possibly one its sole inhabitants.

Janduin and Araceli helped Merissa dig up the body of one of the slain druids. She took some possessions off the body.

Inventory

The party gained:

  • Various mushroom potions, with effects of healing, lesser restoration, and spell recovery.
  • The pilgrim’s buddy, a +1 short sword that loses its magic in urban areas.
  • The fretted axe, a +1 battleaxe.
  • The icon of St. Poythora.
  • The griffin shield, a formerly enchanted shield that could be repaired back to a +1 shield.
  • A set of splint mail.
  • Any ordinary goods they desire to take from the Hidden Temple, within carrying capacity.
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