Tyranny of Dragons

Adventure Log 11-12-2015

1. Dicking around
1a. Encounter with Pharblex Splattergloo
1b. head on a pike.
2. Snapjaw keeps body reposed during our absence.
3. Moving to 3rd floor room above Lizardroom. Top of tower infested with spiders. Lizardmen killed them and through them in the moat.
4. checking for loot in the long room.
5. Elys discovers copper vs black dragon battle?
6. Elys spies on top floor of lizard area.

II.
looks into the water – shallow water.
up SW stairs – cavernous room
bullywug muddy room – down stairs
Nam spider climbs down room

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Adventure Log

Party heads upstairs into large empty room filled with stands and targets.
Discussed 5 dragon masks.
Moved to courtyard – empty.

Opened door to Chapel.
-rectangular chapel
-door across from double door entrance.
-opening in east wall
-benches inside
-west end table with candles, very nicely carved Tiamat statue, heads seem more lizard-like.
-Alcove – dumping ground, rotting altar, broken pews, rusty candelabras.
-Alcove – long alcove (east wall)
-Stairs up to side barracks.

Barracks.
-3 cultists – FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT
-Enter Scene right – Add Dragonwing.
-attacks thrown
—burning hands
—ray of frost
—firebolt
—spike growth
—flurry of blows
—firebolt
—scimitar
-Enter Scene stairs – Add 2 cultists
—firebolt
—scimitar → deathblow
—chill touch

Head upstairs in barracks
-crates, books, tables with more books.

Head to Library
-Rezmir, Dralmorrer, Snapjaw, Asbarra
-BOOM fireball.
-Cloud of daggers on Dralmorrer
-Scorching ray
Elys goes down → Healing word

-Intermission -
(remaining log from Chris)

Red wizard hits Elys and Nam with a fireball.
Elys returns fire with a Prismatic Orb, killing the Red Wizard.
Elys drops unconscious from attacks.
Illen brings Elys back to consciousness with Healing Word.
Rezmir catches Elys, Nam and Shino with her acid breath, knocking Elys unconscious again.
Illen brings Elys back to consciousness with Healing Word.
Rezmir knocks Shino unconscious with a melee attack, then knocks Nam unconscious with a followup attack.
After attacking Elys, Rezmir fled up the stairs.
Elys tried to catch Rezmir with a web spell, but she saved and managed to get around the corner.
Elys and Illen (now in bear shape) pursued Rezmir up to the third floor.
We discovered her as she was digging the Dragon Mask out of a dresser, and she put the mask on just as we reengaged her.
Rezmir tried to flee past Elys, but Elys held the doorway and kept her from leaving.
Rezmir dropped a Darkness spell.
Illen charged into the Darkness, shifted back, and cast Thunderwave.
The Thunderwave caught Rezmir and killed her.
We retrieved the Dragon Mask, as Rezmir’s corpse dissolved into nothingness.
Illen and Elys returned to the lower level to revive our fallen party, only to find that Shino had succumbed to her wounds.
We were able to bind Nam’s wounds and bring him around.
Over the next hour, we secured the library area against further threat. Nam and Illen rested while Elys performed a ritual to Detect Magic throughout the tower.

The following magical items were recovered:
Rezmir’s Dragon Mask
A great sword named “Hazirawn”
A magic necklace
Two scrolls

Nam searched through the library and discovered instructions on how to activate an underground portal. The portal goes to a place referred to as ‘The Lodge’, where the Dragon Cult has been moving their loot. The notes also revealed that the Cult was moving on from this area since all the loot had been moved through already.

Additionally, we found an inventory of items they had taken from Greenest and three other areas.

Snapjaw came around a few hours later, and we recounted the adventure to him. He agreed to keep the area clear while we recovered.

We ended the session by taking a long rest.

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Um... Hey guys... Hey, hey, you guys... DRAGON COMING THIS WAY!!
Session 10

Continuing from where we left off at last session, where we were in the tower room and deciding what to do next.

- continued our search of the tower, proceeding to the 2nd floor
- found a room with a raven; did not enter
- found a Farseer of Illusk on the 3rd floor
- used the Farseer
- saw a dragon’s lair (west of tower)
- saw a dragon charge out and head due east (towards us)
- ran down and out of tower to 1st floor (dining hall)
- encountered 5x Cultists; 3x fled, 2x killed
- killed 2x Cultists + 3x Bullywogs with fireball
- killed 5x Bullywogs, 1x Cultist
- 1x Cultist fled
- ran back up the tower to Lizardmen’s barracks
- saw Sergey abducted by the dragon
- Resmir has one of the masks!
- leave, rest for the night
- re-enter the castle
- Resmir and the elf Dralmorrer Borngray and the Red Wizard of Thay have Snapjaw (might be captive?)
- the Lizardmen are hesitant to help us or tell us what is happening
- Elys checked the Farseer again
- mapped the dragon’s lair with Sergey and the dragon (I am supposed to get a map of the lair from Adam for this next session)
- Illen checked the room with the raven; found nothing of note
- went back to upper barracks (2G)
- found ladybox (I have NO IDEA what that means?!)

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Charming the Lizardmen
Session 9

I’m sorry, I simply don’t have time to make a nice log like I did before. So I’m just posting a list of the things I wrote down that we did for the last two sessions.

- charmed the Lizardmen
- discovered they wished the return of the “Black Mist”, and to rid themselves of the Bullywogs
- from their description, believed this to be a black dragon
- traveled with them to the castle in hopes of orchestrating an uprising
- retrieved weapons for the Lizardmen to arm themselves and use against the cultists
- nearly lost my spellbook falling into the water
- started fighting after sneaking into the castle
- confronted by Cultists, killed them (4 or so)
- invaded the tower (1st floor)
- found a book of spells, among other treasures

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Days 45-61
Session 8

Dear Mælström,

Illen has returned from his “mission”. He rejoined our party after the incident at the inn, smoking a pipe with a sly smile on his face.

After several uneventful days on the road, we approached Daggerford. There, our caravan was joined by two new members, Jamna Gleamsilver and a Red Wizard of Thay. At first, neither spoke with us directly, though certainly I was (and am still) suspicious of the Red Wizard. As soon as I detected his identity, I shared this with my party.

This proved too much for Sergey, who instantly began interrogating me. As I feared, he had indeed heeded the words of the fallen Cultist and grown increasingly suspicious of my true motivations and purpose. Forced to reveal my past naïve foolishness in joining the Cult, he at first wished to dispel me entirely from the party.

Dismayed, I told at length how I had not initially recognized the Cult for the evil they represent, and had joined them willingly, yet now am determined to fight against them, not only to rescue you, Mælström, but also to save myself from whatever vile magic they worked against me. At first, he refused to believe me, reminding me of my failures in the ruined temple (which again he called an abandoned mill for some reason). I told him that I am continuing to study the dark necromantic arts as well as gather knowledge of dragons, but all solely to the end of reversing their wicked spells that are decaying me and ultimately, of destroying the Cult itself (and yes, of rescuing you, too, my dearest Mælström!).

Eventually, I tried to prove my sincerity by showing him the picture I had drawn of you in my log. He seemed moved by it, and in the end, agreed to allow me to continue with the party. However, he was very clear that I am on notice, that he is watching me closely for any signs that I might wish to return to the Cult. I must tread carefully, lest he misunderstand again my true purpose in studying the necromantic arts and dragon lore.

In Daggerford, we again received grievous tidings: The innkeeper of the Horse & Hell Hound Inn has been murdered! Apparently, he was ruthlessly killed, and the inn was destroyed. We know not who committed this heinous act, but I fear that it was the men, and that our actions might have played some role in this dreadful turn of events. I rue the day we met, and dread even more the day when next we meet again!

Several days after departing from Daggerford for the final portion of our long journey to Waterdeep, we had again made camp for the night. In the morning, we sat down to our ration of porridge for the day. Suddenly, before we could even enjoy a bite, Jamna Gleamsilver approached our table and sat herself to our party. Speaking blithely of trivial things like a little girl, she ever so slyly reached into a bowl of porridge and began fishing about! Quite taken aback, we starred aghast. Then she very swiftly and stealthily pulled a small, round silver object from the porridge, revealing it to us.

Very momentarily, she spoke in a serious tone, telling us that the objects were hidden in all of our bowls and that we must not eat the porridge, as they would swell with barbs in our throats and kill us, with no remedy available to stop its course once swallowed. She ever so slightly nodded in the direction of the Cultists’ table as she spoke. Never did her blithe expression waver! And just as suddenly, she returned to her gay talk of trite things, smiling and laughing with us. The Cultists soon departed to ready themselves for the journey, at which point we disposed of the lethal porridge and made ready ourselves. Fearing that the entire bag of grain might be contaminated, we dared not break our fast at all, and instead were forced to do without. We must needs tread ever more carefully, keeping close watch on our food supply and on the Cultists!

Two days later, we arose to discover that a Cultist had been murdered in the night. All the caravan gathered round to learn what had happened.

As soon as the remaining Cultists noted our presence, they swiftly began accusing us of murdering their companion! I know nothing of what happened, and I trust mine own companions at their word that they also know nothing and furthermore did not commit this deed. At this time, we know not what happened. The Cultists attempted to have us expelled from the caravan, but ultimately we were able to convince the rest of our innocence, and thus were allowed to remain, though grudgingly I fear. We certainly have attracted much negative attention in the course of our journey!

Privately, I find my thoughts about the matter drifting toward Jamna Gleamsilver. Might she have murdered the Cultist in retribution for the attempt on our lives? I know little of her, though she did save us from certain doom, so I believe her to be on our side. Whilst quite adept at playing the part of a silly little girl, she has more than revealed her true nature to us, one of sly intelligence very capable of deception. Yet precisely this makes me distrust her all the more. Might she have revealed the Cultists’ assassination attempt precisely in order to gain our favor, the better to wreck greater havoc later? Might she even have planted the silver objects herself? Only time will tell.

If not done by Jamna, it is also possible that the Cultist’s death was merely staged. Could they have cast a spell on him so as to make him appear dead in order to have us expelled from the caravan? This seems unlikely, as he looked well and truly dead to me, bleeding profusely from many dagger wounds. Yet I was not able to approach the “corpse” to detect if an illusion of some sort had been cast on him. Again, only time will tell.

Finally, we approached Waterdeep. Our accursed journey was at an end. The caravan began to dissolve as the parties went their separate ways to their various destinations, and we saw the Cultists, too, were preparing to depart. Samardag enquired if we would see him to his final destination in Waterdeep, or if he should settle up our final wages at the outskirts of the city so that we might be on our way.

Oh, dearly do I wish that we had been able to see him to his final destination! The porcelain was still wholly intact from our long, perilous journey, despite all. Sorely did I wish to accompany him to the end, so that I might perhaps finally know the true nature of his wares! Yet we all saw that, should we tarry long, we would surely lose sight of the Cultists and never discover their destination. For the greater good of the realm, and against I am sure the curious desire of all to know the truth of the porcelain, we decided to settle up our wages immediately instead of accompanying Samardag through the city.

Perhaps someday, somehow, we will meet again, and I will finally solve the Great Mystery of the Porcelain.

Carefully, always remaining just out of sight of the Cultists, we followed them through the city to the harbor. There, we observed how they pulled their wagons into a warehouse, which appeared from our vantage point to contain many more such wagons and carts. Quickly we deliberated whether we should attempt to infiltrate the warehouse, and decided that, if we did, we would be unlikely to learn any more than we already had, or worse, we might be discovered and this time overpowered by the Cultists, now in greater numbers.

We thus observed what we could, and departed to seek the inn where we hoped to find Ontharr Frume and Leosin Erlanthar, as per Ontharr’s instructions in Baldur’s Gate. There, we met with Ontharr and Leosin, as well as a new man by the name of Lord Neverember. We first shared all we had learned about the Cultists and the whereabouts of their warehouse, meager though this was. However, all seemed very pleased that we had discovered the location of the warehouse.

From Lord Neverember, we learned that the Cultists are led by a man called Severin. Their purpose in amassing such a hoard of treasure is as I have suspected all along: They wish to somehow use the treasure to summon an army of dracoliches, and ultimately, Tiamat herself! Lord Neverember is the leader of the Lord’s Alliance, a group to which Leosin and Ontharr also belong, as we learned, which is working in secret to disrupt the Cult in their evil activities. After some brief deliberation, we all decided to join their cause, as we are aligned in our purpose and have already seen a little of the quiet power they wield.

Further, we have also learned from Lord Neverember that the Cultists are to depart on the morrow by ship with the hoard from the warehouse. However, as Lord of Waterdeep, he has set about the task of closing the city’s harbor under some pretense, thus delaying the ship from departing for at least a day so that we might devise a plan and prepare for the next stage of our adventure.

Although we were not able to prevent the Cultists from detecting us, nor were we able to prevent their delivery to the warehouse, I feel that we have not yet failed. If we can prevent their immediate departure and devise a clever plan, we might yet be able to prevent them from using the hoard of treasure for their wicked purpose. We must fight on!

I still feel terribly saddened about how dismayed my party was to learn of my past. Yet I can only hope that they will understand why I chose to keep that secret guarded for a time: I desperately needed the opportunity to prove my value and true intentions through my deeds and actions. For who should ever believe that a Cultist, such as they are, could see the truth and seek to change their course and correct their past mistakes? I myself would never believe such a tale of another Cultist! I should scarcely believe it of myself, if it were not mine own story. Not to speak of my ghastly appearance! I must find a way to stop the decay ere it is too late!

I place my trust in them, that in time, they will understand, and trust me again in turn.

Forever yours,

Elys

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Balance

I awoke this morning to the call of a woodland bird. This peculiar little bird fluttered from branch to branch finally stopping on the branch I rested upon. Grandmaster Bin taught us of the balance of birds in our daily lesson. They fall from branch to branch – balancing large bodies on relatively small legs.
“The universe is in balance. Every tree. Every stone. Every person. If you can sense this balance, you can alter it for effect.”

I didn’t realize what he meant until this morning. There is a point where the balance starts – where it can be shocked and disrupted. It has taken me years, but I believe I can replicate his sparring trick. He could shift our balance, not our physical balance, but internally, to make us reset our Ki and send us into a state of chaos. It was brief, but very effective.

I should ask Illen about the bird that enlightened me. Perhaps it has more to teach.

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Journal Entry - Shinokage
Horse & Hell Hound Inn

I have found my new target of hatred. Four spoiled rich brats who deserve to have their eyes removed and nailed to their pretentious family crests. They coerced a simple innkeeper and insulted our honor. Although it’s been an long time, I remember my elf family dealing with such vagabonds in our forest-home. They stole their supplies and harried them out of the forest. The elves were weak. The monks of the Shadow taught me the only resolution is to reciprocate with a stronger hand. They punch, you kick. They kick, you maim. They maim, you kill. I know that I will see them dead before the hand of fate with their weak human heritage. I will be their death knell. They will see my face before I crush their ribs with my fist.

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Miller? I hardly know 'er!

After rescuing Shinokage and the human woman, you make your way back to the surface. The woman’s name is Erin Heartshorn and she introduces herself as a wanderer, hermit and ‘tender of the wild’. After a detailed discussion with Illen of the local ecosystem and how it affects the reproductive cycles of several species of crickets, you have the strong suspicion that she is a druid. This is all but confirmed when Nanfoodle notices a small pendant that she wears around her neck, shaped as the head of a stag.

Erin mentions that she was investigating the ruin because of a recent increase in unexplained animal deaths in the area. Shortly after she arrived, she saw a Shinokage approaching the ruin. Unsure of what to expect, she hid in the brush. Suddenly, a thick pale mist seemed to rise from the ground. Before she could react, she was enveloped and quickly began to feel faint. The last thing she heard was a rough voice saying, ’that’s one less to deal with!’

She continues discussing various natural phenomena with Illen while you walk back to the caravan, but she stops short before you get there. “Thank you for your rescue, but my path leads a different way. Best of luck to you all, we will see each other again, I am sure.” With a long look at Illen, she shapeshifts into a deer and bounds off into the woods. Illen looks back and forth between her and the group and eventually shrugs and says, ‘Yeah, we’ll see each other again.’ He shapeshifts into a pony and trots off after Erin. Curiously, you all notice that one of Illen’s front legs has a jagged, seeping wound.

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Days 28-44
Session 7

Dear Mælström,

Illen has departed with Erin Heartshorn on some sort of… “mission”. I guess that’s what the kids are calling it these days…

After several uneventful days of travel, as we came over a rise, we discovered hobgoblins attacking a wagon on the road. A family was cowering in fear underneath the wagon, defenseless against such a terrible onslaught. Quickly, we sprang into action, defeating the hobgoblins with ease. The family was relatively unharmed, though very shaken, and had suffered the loss of some of their goods on the wagon in the fight.

Shinokage felt especially moved by their plight. At her insistence, we have taken the family under our care. They are also en route to Dragonspear, so it makes sense to join our caravan for protection in these perilous times, whilst also restoring purpose to our continued presence, for now at least. Shinokage even offered them gold to cover the losses they suffered, and then some.

Continuing on in our journey, we again had several very quiet days, almost too quiet, in retrospect… Nearing Dragonspear, we began to wonder how we might locate a new patron to join the caravan so we might have pretext to continue on to Waterdeep. Our worries, however, were ultimately for naught…

Just one day’s travel from Dragonspear, we awoke to discover that the wheels of the wagons belonging to Samardag and to the family we rescued from the hobgoblins had been destroyed in the night. Knowing that an hour or more would be required to replace the wheels, we encouraged the caravan to proceed to Dragonspear, where we would join them again later that evening, as we knew they intended to make camp south of the city for the night. Samardag’s new party had little interest in assisting with such a menial task, so we set about the work of repairing both wagons. Whilst Sergey was lifting Samardag’s wagon in absence of any other means of lifting it to replace the wheel, we were suddenly ambushed by a group of Cultists and two red wyrmlings! A great fight ensued, in which we were nearly overcome. We at first believed that we would not stand alone against our foes, as we should surely be aided in our fight by Samardag’s new party, yet they were soon revealed as none other than farcical imitations of heroes. They quaked and cowered, and soon each fell in turn to a single blow from the Cultists.

Ever valiant until the end, we soon overcame the Cultists and their kobolds, though not before one shouted to me, “You never should have left us, Elys! You will never prevail over such might! Return to us, ere it is too late and we destroy you and all you hold dear!” Shocked and dismayed at this outcry, my party looked to me with a terrible mix of fury and fear in their eyes. Yet we fought on, until all the kobolds and Cultists lay dead at our feet.

Now the red wyrmlings attacked with renewed vigor. With our powers combined, we were able to destroy one of them, but we were unable to prevent the other from escaping. As we delivered blow upon blow and he grew weaker, seeing that all his companions had fallen, he took wing and fled. Unable to match his speed by air, we ultimately understood that he was lost to us.

In the aftermath, a stony silence ensued, in which I saw that my party was terrified and troubled by the Cultist’s words. Examining Samardag’s fallen party for any useful gear we might now have, we discovered that their armor and weapons were but cheap imitations, well disguised wood painted so as to appear as true adventuring gear. All was worthless, and soon we understood: Their boasts were nothing more than inventions, designed to gain patronage, on the hope that they should never face any true dangers such that their farce might be revealed. Mere con artists, in truth. Shameful indeed.

Upon discovering the truth of their con, Samardag begged our forgiveness, apologizing profusely for ever doubting our mightiness and begging us to return to his employ. Feigning deliberation, we in truth gladly and willingly accepted, as now we would be able to rejoin the caravan with ease and continue our journey to Waterdeep.

Searching the Cultists, we also discovered a note with a drawing of the layout of our camp from the previous night. Our wagons were clearly marked, and we understood then that we had not escaped the notice of the Cultists in the caravan at all. Rather, our wagons had been deliberately damaged, such that we would be unable to proceed in the morning and might be ambushed by the Cultists and their wyrmlings. Grievous tidings!

I am pleased to report that I was able to harvest the heart and scales from the wyrmling we killed. I know not as yet to what end I might use these terribly valuable items, but surely I will require them in due time. I must learn how I might best harness their power. Until such time, I have preserved the heart from decay with magic.

We quickly set about the work of repairing the wagons, fearing that the caravan might now have hastened to outpace us at the entreaty of the Cultists. Under the stony gaze of my party, directed at me without discretion, we soon set off for Dragonspear.

Arriving in Dragonspear, we soon found that the caravan had not camped in the location previously agreed upon. We delivered the family to their destination, sending them off safe at last and with a bit of gold jingling in their pockets, then set about replenishing our supplies and discovering what we could about the whereabouts of the caravan. We learned that they had proceeded to a camp on the north side of Dragonspear, and thus were able to rejoin their ranks. The Cultists’ faces betrayed no sign of surprise at our return. Whether this is because they were simply able to contain well their thoughts or because they had already learned of our victory over the ambush from the escaped wyrmling, we know not.

Much have I already written today, but one further incident must I relay, as by the stars I fear we may yet be forced to confront the consequences. Yesterday, after several days of peaceful travel, we made camp. The weather had grown increasingly dismal and drear, such that we wished not to spend a further night in the dank out-of-doors. We ventured to a nearby inn, the Horse & Hell Hound Inn, to see if we might rent a room for the night and thus be snug and dry for a spell.

The innkeeper seemed extremely nervous at our coming, and continuously glanced over to a party in the tavern. He denied that there was a room available, seemingly at the direction of the party, even though the inn was quite large and empty except for the one party. Surely there were enough rooms to spare, yet vehemently he denied this, continuously casting worried glances to the other party.

When the innkeeper brought them more beer at their brusque demands, the party began taunting us, calling us names and telling us to leave immediately, lest we incur their wrath. The innkeeper pled with us to leave, but Shinokage was angered by the ignorant behavior of the men, who, as we soon observed, were bearing crests which revealed them to be very rich descendants of great families. These sorts of men Shinokage cannot abide, and she began to taunt them in return.

As the innkeeper pled, the men rose and struck a few blows. We quickly realized that we must flee or be destroyed, for truly they were powerful foes, ones whom we should never overcome. Ere we fled, Shinokage exchanged final words of abuse with the men, who only laughed derisively as the innkeeper cowered behind his bar.

That night, we retired in the camp, weary of the dank and gloom, and supremely dismayed at our inability to defend ourselves against such vile men. This morning, we arose to discover that Shinokage had returned to the inn’s stables under cover of darkness and released the men’s horses into the night. They all made swiftly for the hills.

I know not what will come of these events, but I fear that we have not seen the last of the men. Shinokage has been fairly simmering with rage all the day long. I can only hope that we will be able to face them when next we meet.

I fear, too, that I will soon be faced with a great reckoning. All of my party, but most of all Sergey, continuously steal glances in my direction, their gaze full of reproach. Yet I fear to address openly the Cultist’s words myself. I believe I shall wait until they broach the subject themselves. Until then, I wait in agony.

Though we strongly believe the Cultists know we are following them, they as of yet have not betrayed any outward signs of this. We must tread carefully.

The porcelain is still hale. I grow ever more suspicious of its true nature.

Yours truly,

Elys

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