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Recounted by Lowen
Game date: May 1-4, YR 25
It was announced, during the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Return [ed.: May 1], that the gates of Rebirth were being opened to capable adventurers who desired to explore outside. An Adventurer’s Bureau was created, with the purpose of advertising adventuring jobs and applying the Adventurer’s License Test.
The soon-to-be adventurers Idge, Lowen, Zelg, Grenn, and Caelynn, who were all present at the ceremony, made their way to the bureau in order to find profitable jobs, arriving more or less at the same time. Given their range of skills the adventurers decided to band up and recover Hallea Mattea’s missing heirloom in Horngalhome.
Upon arriving in Horngalhome and talking to Hallea, the adventurers discovered that a giant raven had recently arrived from southwest of Rebirth and made its nest on a spire on the village’s outskirts, and was stealing jewelry and other shiny objects from the villagers. The adventurers accepted the job of recovering the jewelry and getting rid of the bird, and spent the night in the village before leaving on the next day.
The adventurers left for Horngal’s Hill on the following morning. On the way to the top they encountered a herd of goats, which they managed to scare off, before reaching the abandoned ruins of an orcish fort. After passing near a big wolf (which they managed not to awake), they arrived at the spire where the raven had made its nest. A few moment after they arrived they spotted the bird arriving in the distance, returning to its nest. A very well-placed shot from Lowen, with the aid of Caelynn, plus a few spells from Zelg sent the bird away, to the top of the nest, to tend to its wounds. Idge and Grenn quickly climbed the spire to finish off the bird. They succeeded, but Idge was near-fatally wounded in the process. Caelynn climbed up to heal him, and the party gathered Hallea Mattea’s heirloom, together with some additional jewelery and a silver bracelet tied around the bird’s leg, and left.
The ride back to Horngalhome was uneventful. After some investigation, Zelg figured that the silver bracelet was a magical device capable of communicating with a second similar item. The adventurers returned the missing items to their rightful owners, Zelg managed to taste the cooked giant raven leg that he wanted, and they returned to New Haven.
Recounted by Lember
Game date: May 7, YR 25
Our group of adventurers - composed of Lowen (Daniel - ranger), Cahlan (Thomas - fighter), Grenn (Greg - fighter), Caelynn (Beth - bard), and Lember (Grant - monk) - decided to venture into the sewers in order to hunt rats, look for various missing persons, and create a map of that fabulous locale.
For a few hours, life was good. Side passages were charted, signs of previous rat occupation were found, and boots were muddied. On approaching one of the outlets to the lake, however, Grenn found a crossbow triggered by a tripwire (the hard way), and upon further investigation the group realized smugglers were using this particular outlet. There were no smugglers present.
After another hour or so of sewer diving, the group ran across its first set of rats, which promptly tore the group to pieces. Lember found himself unconscious in the first round of combat, but was swiftly saved from death by Lowen (I think?). This group of rats was led by a granddaddy rat that could call rat swarms when it screamed. This seemed a cute novelty at first, until said rat swarms killed both Lowen and Caelynn.
After some quick thinking, Grenn used some oil to create a wall of fire between the survivors and the rat army. Grenn and Cahlan used this period of relative calm to dispatch the remaining rat swarms, and then promptly fled from the sewers; hauling an unconscious Lember, a dead Caelynn, and a coin purse that totally didn't have Lowen's name on it.
The guards were pleased at the report of the smuggler's den, and the group was rewarded accordingly. Using the portion of the reward slated for Caelynn and Lowen (as well as the totally not suspicious coin purse referenced earlier), the survivors set up a resurrection fund at the temple of Caladas for future misadventures.
Recounted by Lember
Game date: May 10-12, YR 25
Adventurers' Mutual Insurance Corporation - Case Report #1
Location: Growville and environs
Date of Filing: May 13, YR 25
Case Manager: Lember
According to Cahlan and Grenn, I'm supposed to be writing these case reports whenever I go out into the field. I have no idea why; something about accountability and ensuring that any claims are verifiable. Either way, I suppose I'll begin.
I decided to gather a small group of capable fighters to once again sate my thirst for field work. I recruited Ragash, a stout and sturdy dwarf who seemed like he/she (who can tell with dwarves?) would be a decent fighter; and Naivara, a half-elf who seemed adept both in the healing arts and in combat. A few hours after leaving the Adventurers' Guild, I also realized that we were accompanied by a street urchin by the name of Azden. I have no idea where he came from, though I'm told he was with us right from the beginning. This seemed like a useful skill to me, so I said nothing.
After my experience in the sewers, I imagined it would be unwise to venture in without Cahlan and Grenn, so after a brief discussion we decided to embark to Growville to aid the farmers with a monster problem. The secretary asked us to look for a friend of hers who went missing while attempting to solve the problem earlier. Noting that she seemed quite distraught, I attempted to soothe her by informing her that her friend was likely with Caladas now. For some reason this did not have the intended effect...
The journey to Growville was uneventful. Growville itself is a quaint little farming town, and based on the reports we heard from speaking to townspeople about the monster attacks, it seemed quite obvious that they were in over their heads. The mayor was quite rude, however, and I was tempted to leave and let Caladas determine their fates. Alas, my fellow adventurers did not agree with me. I will have to talk with Azden at some point; for some reason he interrupts me whenever I try to speak with anybody outside of our group. For some reason I think he doubts my interpersonal skills.
Rudeness aside, we discovered that the monster attacks were occurring on the road leading north out of town, and we were encouraged to speak to some of the farmers closer to the attacks. We did so, and I must say that at the time, this monster issue sounded far more like a hallucinatory drug issue. We heard reports of octopus-headed cows, gigantic mosquito-bats, and two-headed dogs. I dismissed the former two as the result of a hyperactive imagination, but I was concerned about the two-headed dogs. Such creatures are common in death myths, and I became concerned that these creatures were a sign that we would soon meet Caladas ourselves. As it turns out, I was almost correct...
Also, for some reason Ragash determined that we should buy a sheep and bring it with us from that point on. Truth be told, I'm not sure why, but I did not wish to question him/her. I have heard that dwarves can have quite the unstable temper if provoked.
Venturing further north with our new woolly friend, we soon found that either the farmers were correct, or our drinks in Growville were seasoned with the aforementioned drugs. We located a dilapidated farmhouse that seemed suitable for a rest. Instead, we found it filled with large blood-sucking bat-mosquitoes. Despite our surprise, we dispatched the odd creatures and did indeed find time for our rest.
As we ventured a bit further north, we found two more significant oddities. The first was the aforementioned octopus-headed cow. We found it standing next to a pile of garbage along with a few of the mosquito creatures. Alas, it turned out to be quite the inefficient fighter, and we dispatched it and its friends without a scratch. The second odd encounter was not so friendly, however.
Upon sighting a burrow-like natural structure in the distance, Azden and I sneaked up to investigate. We swiftly discovered that this burrow contained a pair of two-headed dogs. Alas, Azden was discovered and was forced to flee while I continued my reconnaissance. I assume the rest of the group decided to engage the dogs, as we soon found ourselves in battle. While we did dispatch the dogs, I found myself unconscious twice, and Ragash found himself near death and diseased. As it turned out, this was not for naught, as the burrow contained the remains of the secretary's friend.
At this point we decided to return, and were forced to sacrifice our woolly friend to save us from a cow-topus. I wonder if Ragash has the gift of foresight... I will have to investigate this further.
To conclude my report, I have a few recommendations for shaping AMIC's future policies:
1) This group seems quite sturdy and more than capable in combat. I would recommend we continue to work with these individuals to maximize our profits and minimize the amount we have to pay out in the future.
2) The presence of otherworldly beasts within Rebirth suggests that we may wish to raise premiums in and around Growville. It's obvious that adventurers in this area face a much higher risk of death in this area, and I imagine that if we do not raise our current rates, we will find ourselves out of business.
This concludes my report.
Basically, we decided to head out to Growville to check out the monster attacks north of there. We spoke to a couple townspeople who really didn't have too much to say other than pointing us in the direction of where the attacks were happening and providing us some leads to a couple farmers we should talk to along the way.
Acting on this advice, we headed north to find these farmers, and through speaking to them discovered that they were being plagued by cow-topuses, two-headed dogs, and large blood-sucking mosquito-bats. Being the intrepid adventurers we are, we headed further north to investigate.
The first creatures we ran into were the mosquito-bats, as we investigated an abandoned farmhouse on the side of the road. We dispatched the group of them relatively quickly, and determined that they were relatively weak individually. There was nothing of note in the farmhouse.
We next ran into a cow-topus as we investigated a garbage dump. After some hilariously lucky rolls, we steamrolled the poor tentacled bovine and some mosquito-bats that came with it. There was nothing of note in the garbage piles.
Finally, we spotted a burrow a little further down the road. Lember and Azden sneaked in to investigate, but Azden was discovered by a pair of two-headed dogs that emerged from the burrow. The group engaged the dogs, one of which diseased Ragash and another of which knocked Lember unconscious... Twice. Ultimately the group was victorious, and the body of Penthar Zepple was found within the burrow.
At this point, the group decided to go back to the city to get some rest and return the body of Penthar. On one occasion, the group was stalked by another cow-topus, but a decision was made to leave the sheep behind as a distraction. This worked like a charm, and the group made it back to the city without further incident.
Recounted by Lember
Game date: May 16-22, YR 25
Adventurers' Mutual Insurance Corporation - Case Report #2
Location: Growville and environs
Date of Filing: May 23, YR 25
Case Manager: Lember
Today we decided to return to Growville to continue our search for the source of the odd monsters we have been encountering.
Our journey north back to Growville was relatively uneventful. We continued north and once again rather uneventfully reached the hellhound burrows we dealt with earlier this week, and began our search for the trapper's cabin. We hoped it would contain some clues as to current events.
As it turned out, the trapper's cabin was not much further. We found the side track in question and made the trek out. We found a very strange creature upon our arrival: half bird and half woman. I didn't believe this was the trapper in question, as I feel the farmers may have mentioned it had the trapper been a harpy. My suspicions were soon validated, as we sparked up conversation with the harpy and realized that it was at one point the mean farmer's wife. That solved one mystery.
Regrettably, all talking aside, the harpy decided to attempt to eat us anyways. A rather heated discussion broke out between Naivara and Zela about whether to kill or to incapacitate the harpy. After a few failed fire bolts, Naivara won out, and we tied up our new prisoner. Unfortunately, a second harpy soon joined us, and we determined that this was the mean farmer's daughter. We failed to capture it, however, and it flew off.
We returned to New Haven with our harpy friend, and caused a bit of a commotion along the way when Naivara decided to feed it a sheep in the Growville church. That said, we took her to the Mage College for study and returned to Growville for further investigation.
Further study at the trapper's cabin proved useless, though on a hunch we decided to return to the garbage heap for further study. Some work from Naivara and Zelg quickly found us a faulty magical artifact dating from the Mage Wars among the trash, and we determined that this was the target of our search.
Oddly enough, the mayor of Growville did not seem to trust my word that this was the artifact in question. I offered to leave it with him so we could investigate first hand, but that seemed to change his mind. Humans are odd.
We returned the artifact to the Mage College. Apparently the harpy we brought back managed to kill someone an escape. I wonder if we can convince the mages to purchase an insurance policy now. Food for thought.
Note: Do we have a policy to cover beings transformed into other beings? We may find more of these artifacts. I believe we need a new policy declaring that transmutations and permanent transformations render all existing policies null and void.
At the trapper's cabin, we found the mean farmer's wife transformed into a harpy. We also shortly discovered that his daughter's fate was the same. We captured his (former) wife and brought it back to New Haven to have the mages study the phenomenon.
Knowing that we were now likely dealing with someone or something that could transform creatures, and realizing that there was nothing suspicious near the trapper's cabin, we decided to go back and search the garbage pile. A quick detect magic determined that this was indeed the right idea, and we discovered a faulty magic artifact from the Mage Wars that was causing these transformations.
We promptly brought the artifact to the Mage College for study and called it a day.
Recounted by Lember
Game date: May 29, YR 25
Adventurers' Mutual Insurance Corporation - Case Report #3
Location: Adventurers' Guild
Date of Filing: May 29, YR 25
Case Manager: Lember
Today, we decided to attempt to gain our Adventurer's Licenses. Grenn and Cahlan advised me not to make a report for this, but thorough is always better in my view.
The moment we entered the test, I was stunned by the [REDACTED] we faced. While it was fairly obvious to me that [REDACTED] and [REDACTED], I was entirely surprised by the [REDACTED]. Thankfully, we prevailed thanks to Idge's (likely) drug-induced ingenuity.
The second room appeared far more [REDACTED] than the first. Azden and Idge attempted to [REDACTED] the [REDACTED] with a [REDACTED], which was moderately successful. Alas, it also [REDACTED] some [REDACTED]. Azden decided to [REDACTED] as well, which was remarkably unhelpful. Azden is very likely the reason why we can't have nice things.
The third room at first appeared entirely devoid of [REDACTED]. Upon further investigation, however, we discovered that this wasn't the case. Instead, we found [REDACTED]. Always [REDACTED]. Why in the name of Caladas is it always [REDACTED]??
[Case Manager's Note: I have been informed that the vulgarities and expletives contained within this section were not appropriate for a formal report. I have also been asked to apologize profusely for comments made about various individuals' mothers. My apologies to those I offended.]
The final room appeared to be a simple [REDACTED]. While irritating, we found that taking the [REDACTED] and using it to [REDACTED] the [REDACTED] while simultaneously [REDACTED] the [REDACTED] and [REDACTED] the [REDACTED] proved effective.
As a result, we now have our Adventurer's Licenses. Note that as such, we should try to convince the following individuals to raise their premiums:
Game date: June 2-8, YR 25
Game date: June 13-20, YR 25
Recounted by Azden
Game date: June 24-25, YR 25
Never having been to the sewers, Naivara, Azden and Ragash decided to give it a shot, since the previous stories surely were grossly exaggerated.
They decided to complement the map already made by Lember, Grenn, and the two dead folks. So they started off at the entrance nearest to the west gate, and went south, following the main tunnel and only investigating tunnels that led outwards - in an attempt to map the perimeter of the sewers first.
For the most part, the exploration was smooth. After a few hours they stumbled upon some giant rats, and some time later with a winged mud monster, but both challenges were easily overcome.
Next, the adventurers happened upon two shady characters camping in a wider part of the main tunnel. They were armed and quite rude, but didn't seem to be doing anything illegal and, since none of the more, erm, "trigger-happy" members of the group were around, the party just decided to walk past them and continue on their way. The party attempted to inform the authorities of the presence of these individuals, but the guards didn't seem too concerned about it.
They also found the body of Claravagus Chent, after which they returned to the surface to cash in the reward (and also to deliver some live giant rats).
Proceeding along the main tunnels, the adventurers discovered an opening created by the partial collapse of a wall. This led to some older part of the tunnels, which Ragash identified as being extremely old masonry, from centuries before the Return. They defeated some giant fungi, and decided to leave these older tunnels as Naivara felt they were in danger of collapsing further.
The adventurers proceeded along the main tunnel, skewered some rat swarms, and reached the Flank river, at the opening near the North docks. This meant that the perimeter of the sewers was almost completely mapped (including the map done in the previous adventure) but, since the party could not cross the river at this point, they decided to return to the surface and continue this exploration at another time.
Alas, at the final few paces the party's luck deserted them. At the bottom of the ladder, between the adventurers and a good night's rest, stood a yellow blob. With confidence, the party attacked the blob-thing with blades and lightning, only to find out that at each strike the blob divided itself in two. The new blobs created each time were smaller, but packed the same punch as the original one - as the party quickly found out when four of the blobs nearly digested Ragash within seconds. Instants before Ragash's absolute (and probably non-ressurectable) death she was healed by Naivara, and the group decided for a strategical retreat. Ragash fled, and Naivara dropped some oil on the ground before fleeing so Azden would set it on fire to hold off the jellies. A panicked look took over Azden, who refused to set anything on fire and ran as fast as he could.
It was at this point that the batlle took an unexpected turn for the better. As it turns out, the yellow jellies move very, very slowly, and lack any ranged attacks, so it was very simple for Naivara and Azden to pick the jellies off from a distance with fire and ice attacks. After making sure that no tiny bits of jelly remained, the adventurers returned to the surface, with new scary sewer stories to tell.
Game date: June 27-28, YR 25
Recounted by Azden
Game date: July 2-4, YR 25
Following up on a previous arrangement with the city's librarian, Azden, Zelg, Naivara and Grenn descended once more into the sewers to escort a group of three scholars as they studied the ancient ruins the adventurers had discovered previously.
For most part, the expedition was uneventful. Despite the appearance of a few steam mephits, which the adventurers quickly dealt with, the historians had the chance to peacefully investigate the mosaic map room, the room with shards of pottery (which they spent hours trying to piece together, as expected) and, finally, the cave with the statue. Azden and Grenn had been here before, and advised everyone of the risk of a cave-in in the tunnel leading to the statue. After the party decided that the not-so-nimble Naivara should stay behind, they crossed the fragile section of the tunnel without incidents, and the scholars started investigating the ruins that lay beyond. After a half-hour or so, the party heard a loud noise coming from the tunnels, and asked that the scholars wait while they investigated. They found the tunnel completely collapsed, and the voice of Naivara coming from the rubble. Thanks to Zelg's dwarven knowledge the group was able to free Naivara, and arrange a makeshift passage that everyone could get safely through. The scholars were escorted back to the surface, and demonstrated interest in future expeditions with the aid of an engineering crew to open some collapsed passages and study the ruins further.
After that, the group returned to the sewers to continue honing their cartography skills. After some wandering they came once more to a pool that some of them had visited on a previous adventure. They approached the pool, prompting the appearance of a water elemental and two mud mephits. These were joined by two more mud mephits and another elementals some time after. The adventurers fought these creatures until their spells were spent, and their resources were diminishing. Azden's wild magic, which had been dormant for some weeks now, decided to make up for the lost time, first making him shine and blind everyone, then turning him into a potted plant. The blue shining Hydrangea was not amused.
After the appearance of some more elemental creatures (for a total of 10 mud mephits and 4 elementals), the group decided that this pool must be a portal of some kind, and that the creatures would keep on appearing forever, so they decided to retreat. They will have to return here some other time with a strategy to close the portal.
The adventurers returned to surface for some rest, then went once more down the sewers to finish exploring. After a brief encounter with some more mephits, the adventurers managed to finish mapping the larger passages in the sewers, and returned home. All that remains are the myriad of tiny tunnels and the elemental portal.
Recounted by Idge
Game date: July 7-14, YR 25
From the journal of Idgewizzit Krox --
Damn damn damn! I am in deep trouble. Not only am I in the hole for 6 satchels of dust, but now I'm flat out of cash to boot. It all started when I promised to sell some dust for so and so. Leave it to me to down the stuff before you can say how much for a threefer. So I decide to hide out near the bureau to see if I could round up some pigeons to help me pinch some pixies. Luck's a fickle mistress for no sooner had she walked out the door than she walked back in with three suckers in tow. Azden, Naivara, and Ragash. Turns out they knew where we could find some of the little winged uppers. So we headed south of the gates.
It only took a bit of hiking before we came upon our first taste of the magical delights this great wild has to offer. Three wondrous watery women wading in the river. There was an old broken down bridge and the ladies were playing a little game with us trying to knock us into the water with them. My compatriots were visibly perturbed so I decided to lighten the mood with a witticism so deft I can't even begin to do it justice here. "What do you call a Dryad that falls into a lake?" I queried in Fey. Water women must not be party to much humor because they did not know the standard response to my setup. Nevertheless I persisted, "A not so Dryad!" The forest erupted into a chorus of laughter as one of the Nymphs beckoned me over with sultry intent. Never before has a kiss bowled me over as much as this one did and before I knew it my lungs were full of fluid and my brain had been emptied of salient thought. Upon waking from my reverie I found to my horror that the women had been scared away by a barbarous assault of magical bolts. I called out but was left only with a blown kiss, a broken heart and some waterlogged lungs. We trekked onwards.
Soon we came to a brilliant piece of ancient machinery, a magical monolith with navigational, nutritional and medicinal purpose. We spent the evening gorging ourselves on the feasts it conjured, poring over the various maps and instructions it supplied, and having our wounds tended to. I attempted a pixies from nowhere spell but was rebuffed by the limited scope of the machine's function. I suppose some illnesses are still not recognized as such.
We decided to wander down to the river. I was told by my companions that there was a rainbow there that I just had to see. But here dear journal is where the quarry of our expedition made its first and tragically only appearance. Pixies! Pulling our hair and pinching our bottoms! Those cheeky devils. Perhaps the monolith simply had a delayed response to my earlier request. Although the pixies were transparent to our eyes, they were completely apparent to my highly attuned nose, and so I knew to speak the only languages Pixies understand, Fey and threats. Unfortunately my act was too convincing and before I could bottle the beasts they had fled into the woods. Dejected but still slightly high on second hand sparkles we decided to continue for the rainbow.
In the mages college we were taught that rainbows lived in the eye, and not in the world. But this one was firmly situated in the space we occupied, planting its feet on either side of the river. Nevertheless its corporeal form was not nearly as firm, this was surely some kind of illusion. I fell asleep there under its prismatic glow only to be dramatically awakened to the impossible sight of an half elf halfway up the glowing ribbon. It was not long before I too was scampering over this temporary bridge to the island in the forked path of the river.
The foliage was dense on the island, and the next morning we spent a good while scavenging along the banks before we came upon some kind of barrow carved into the side of a hill. The doors were magically sealed, and not even the strongest explosive conjuring of Azden could unhinge the doors, so we decided to let sleeping litches lie. We continued around the other side of the island until nightfall.
Another rude awakening, this time the conversation of Satyrs as they passed our camp. We followed them a ways and deduced that they were looking for a party. Not one to pass on an opportunity, I made myself known to the Satyrs through wine and song. I invited them to join us and they were happy to accept. We managed to liquor them up enough to get the juice on some of the local area, including the existence of a golden maned queen of the woods at some vague location, and the foreshadowing of our would-be muggers the Sprites.
There's one thing worse than a hangover, and that's a surprise ambush hangover. Although they were small, the sprites packed a poison punch with those dainty bows of theirs and we quickly caught on to the best course of action. We were taken prisoner and escorted to the heart of their lair at the center of what we were to discover was their island. Taken before their elder, who I can only imagine was doing her best impression of an oversized raisin, we were subjected to forcible mind penetration in an attempt to discern our intentions. I was jonesin' hard, so I had no choice but to steel myself against their uninvited telepathy lest they discover that I was prepared to burn this whole damned forest down if it meant catching my prey. Through a combination of rhetorical nonsense and bold faced lies we managed to convince the Sprites that we should be allowed to go on our way in return for delivering a warning to others of our kind not to mess with these fluttering legumes on their precious island. but as they took our gold in punishment for our trespass I swore to Caladas that I would return.
Weary and homesick we decided to abandon our quest for pixies and make our way home, stopping only to roast some giant boars for dinner.
Game date: July 18-27, YR 25
Game date: July 30-Aug. 3, YR 25
Recounted by Bareris
Game date: Aug. 6-9, YR 25
Azden, Naivara and Grenn are joined by Bareris, a human monk who hails from the villages outside New Haven and who has had some experience exploring the surrounding woods. They go on a 3-day-long exploration hike of the caves near Goathome. Their goal is to continue mapping the system of underground caverns while ridding it of the dangerous creatures that lurk by.
As they progress, while taking detailed notes of the intricate system of tunnels and caves, they meet several giant centipedes, as well as giant lizards, darkmantles and fungi. The darkmantles are particularly unnerving, not least due to their nasty habits of engulfing their surroundings with an impenetrable darkness and latching themselves to their preys' faces (Grenn's seemed to be their favorite). The ride is particularly bumpy for Bareris, who kept being knocked out by monsters and had to be revived twice by the more experienced adventurers.
In one of the chambers the party comes across a few human skeletons, among which they find some possessions and a letter, addressed to someone named Adelia by her lover, a refugee fleeing from the city of Chapabal, after it was attacked by monsters, including manticores. In his account of events, they were separated during the flooding and subsequent attack on the city, and as he fled to the East Hills and hid in the caves his group of refugees was struck by sickness. Having lost all hope of reaching Adelia, her lover then wrote her that letter so that, upon finding it, she might perhaps know the fate that has befallen them. Naivara keeps the letter.
In another chamber the adventurers meet a friendly myconid who explains to the party that the path beside him leads to a village and also discourages their endeavor, claiming that the system of caves is too vast and dangerous for anyone to hope to clean it up. Instead of moving on to the village, the party doubles back and continues exploring.
After dealing with a group of large lizards, the party then decides to call it a day and then return to New Haven. There, when visiting the library they sell Adelia's letter to the librarian, who may find it useful for record-keeping.
No summary available.
Recounted by Kesem
Game date: Dec. 22-28, YR 25
Recounted by Kesem
Game date: Jan. 4-13, YR 25
Naivara, Kayden, Cay, Azden and your truly followed the Lifestream river south to Venethos, the City of Shadows. We wanted to find information about Torven Plazzad's lost exploration mission, and if possible, rid the city of the undead.
In the city, we found a temple which was mostly intact. Inside, we found a crumbling diary telling the story of some of the city's citizens, who hid from the undead in the temple. The diary stated that during the mage wars, a portal was opened in the City Hall by an evil mage. Shadows came through this portal, and turned the city's inhabitants into shadows themselves.
The diary also mentions a dragon who tried to protect the city; its fate is unknown. We also visited another temple, which was ruined, and a museum, where we managed to salvage priceless ancient artifacts.
We fought 50 of the aforementioned shadows, as well as several wraiths and their spectres. The undead were no match for us, and in particular, our cleric Naivara was happy to show them the wrath of her divine magic. However, due to the heavy presence of undead in the city, we could not explore it any further.
I suggest that we go back to the city soon, and this time, head straight to the City Hall and attempt to close the portal, if it is still open. Regarding the exploration mission, since it is unlikely that they could have passed through the city with so many undead roaming the streets, we should look around for them. They might still be alive (but presumably insane with homesickness), dead, or undead.
Recounted by Kesem
Jan. 17-25, YR 25
A group consisting of 7 of Rebirth's most experienced adventurers left to explore the island town to the west. We made our way to the temple, destroyed some animated armours, and quickly disposed of the flesh golem who made the temple his home. In the temple we found a trap door leading to a maze of tunnels. There we found a shadow demon, which was unfortunately too sneaky.
We went out of the temple and tracked the animated armours to a tinker's shop. We managed to destroy all 16 animated armours inside the shop, but unfortunately managed to burn the shop in the process.
We then encountered the ghost of the tinker himself. He told us that the town was attacked by various monsters during the Mage Wars, and he stayed behind when everyone else escaped. The animated armours are the town's defense mechanism, and there is a big metal box which animates them and a golden disc which controls them. He also explained that the pillars we found around the city are used to light the city at night, and that the dome is used to control the weather. The place used to be a resort town.
The ghost, who was killed by the shadow demon, led us to his body in the tunnels and asked us to take him to where his family members were headed, somewhere to the east, as indicated on a map. Since we were starting to get homesick, we took his body back with us to Rebirth and promised to take him to his family members as soon as we can.
We left the metal box and the golden disc in the city, at the ghost's request. However, we obtained a magic item called Quall's Feather Token, which can be used to create a boat for 24 hours. We also obtained an Alarm scroll, which we sold, and a Stinking Cloud scroll, which I might use to learn this spell in the future.
Recounted by Kesem
Jan. 29 - Feb. 3, YR 25
Naivara, Kayden, Bareris, Azden, Cayeaowel, my wizard colleague Zelg and myself (Kesem) went on a quest to lay the body of our new ghost friend to rest with his long-deceased family members.
We made our way to the ancient hiding place where his city's people fled to during the Mage Wars. The place had some formidable defense mechanisms, and although it only took us a short while to bypass them, it felt like forever! Eventually, we arrived at the living quarters where we found a makeshift graveyard, in which we buried our tinker friend.
We tried to rest after the exhausting events, but were surprised by Belkhaz, the Dao (genie from the Elemental Plane of Earth) who was contracted to protect the place. With our remaining strength we managed to defeat him, but not before Kayden was killed and two other party members fell unconscious.
Our efforts bore fruit; we found many valuable treasures in the area, including 2750 GP, a Potion of Diminution, some Dust of Dryness, a Driftglobe, a Luckstone, a magic mace, a Ring of Free Action, a Disc of Translocation and a spellbook containing spells from the Elemental Plane of Earth.
Luckily, in our magical world death is not at all final, and after carrying Kayden's body back home we managed to find a priest who revived him for a fee.
Recounted by Kesem
Feb. 11-23, YR 25
Just as we were preparing to go to the City of Shadows, our cleric, Naivara, sent word that she must attend to urgent business. Anxious to get out of the dull and uneventful atmosphere of New Haven, we decided to nevertheless go adventuring without her. However, instead of going to the City of Shadows as planned, we set out to explore the orc-infested city we found in the West Plains, which we recognized as one of the ancient cities that the Adventurer's Bureau asked to locate.
Our small party of adventurers consisted of Bareris, Kayden, Azden and myself, Kesem. We arrived at the ancient city without much incident. At first we did not see anyone there. We decided to head to the colosseum and investigate it. Eventually we arrived at a roadblock manned by 3 orcs. We explained to them that we are on a peaceful exploration mission, but they could not be persuaded to let us pass.
Eventually they called for reinforcements, and a fight ensued. We were forced to defend ourselves, killing many orcs in the process. In the last battle, we defeated an orc chieftain and a few priests. We looted a luckstone and a magic axe, which we decided to name Giant Slayer as it appears to be especially effective against giants.
Since we were starting to feel homesick, we decided to head back home. On the way, we asked some orc peasants about the city. It turns out that this city is considered holy to the orc tribes, and its inhabitants, the Broken Fists, are orcs who were cast out of the tribes, for example because of physical deformities. Indeed, all the orcs we saw in the city were scarred and deformed in various ways.
The adventure was very lucrative in terms of experience, gold, magical items, but we hope that by invading the orc's holy city we did not incite the orcs to intensify the ongoing war between the orc tribes and Rebirth.
Recounted by Kesem
Feb. 27-Mar. 10, YR 25
With our cleric back and ready to unleash her divine powers on the undead, we ventured once again to Venethos, also known as the City of Shadows, aiming to rid the city once and for all of the shadows for which it has been so appropriately named. The party consisted of Azden, Bareris, Cayeaowel, Kayden, Naivara and yours truly (Kesem).
On the way south to Venethos we encountered a trail leading into a small home inside a tree. A mysterious yet lovely elf named Talla lives there. She was not willing to share any information about her past, but she did give us a quest: to collect a book of magic from the Witch of Hollow Fen, to the east of the Lifestream River, a day's travel to the south-east of the point where the river splits. We decided to leave this quest for another time.
Finally, we reached the end of the road to Venethos, and encountered a gate. We were immediately attacked by a group of shadows, led by some other evil creature. We fought our way through them, as well as other groups of shadows, wraiths and spectres, until we reached the temple, where we camped for the night.
The next day, we set out to complete our main goal. Last time, we found a diary in the temple saying that during the Magewars, an evil mage opened a portal in the City Hall in order to summon shadows through it. We wanted to find this portal, and close it if it's still open.
Unfortunately, we encountered a slight obstacle: a shadow dragon, which appears to have been an adult bronze dragon prior to its untimely death. No doubt, this was the dragon mentioned in the diary; it tried to protect the city during the Magewars, but failed and was risen as a shadow dragon. Defeating this dragon is a task much beyond our capabilities; we just barely managed to escape, with two of our party members dead.
Our cleric revived one party member, and we enlisted the priests in the temple to revive the other one as soon as we returned home. Unfortunately, we have failed in our task; the City of Shadows will remain the City of Shadows, at least until we become powerful enough to defeat this formidable foe.
Recounted by Kesem
Mar. 14-Mar 23, YR 25
Azden, Bareris, Kayden, Naivara, your favorite wizard (Kesem) and an old friend, Lena the Druid, followed the clues given by the "elf" "lady" Talla regarding a book of magic possessed by the Witch of Hollow Fen.
After drinking and partying (perhaps too much) with some satyrs we encountered on the way, we found tracks of what we assume to be a coven of (three) sea hags, since their feet were webbed. We decided to ignore the tracks and focus on our mission. Finally arriving at Hollow Fen, we found tracks of 3 direwolves and what was later discovered to be a green hag, leading to a house inside a dead treant.
We went looking for these creatures, and quickly ran into them - as quickly as we disposed of them. We took the unconscious green hag into her house, which contained some valuables (including gold in Rebirth coins, no doubt belonging to her poor victims) but no book of magic. The hag was reluctant to share any information, although we learned that another witch in her coven, Nana Lug, is presumably the mother of Little Talla, who is, as we had suspected, a hag herself - disguising as a harmless elf. We killed the green hag, a vile and evil creature, and went searching for Nana Lug.
Eventually, we saw a cottage on a hill. Inside we found two gargoyles, as well as another hag - presumably Nana Lug - who managed to escape unseen out of the window. We searched the cottage and found some more valuables, but no book of magic. We assume that the hag took the book with her as she escaped.
Our quest of obtaining the book of magic has failed, but at least we learned two things. One, that Talla herself is a hag, and presumably part of a coven since she mentioned a few "friends" living in the South Forest when we met her. Two, that there are at least two covens to the east of the Lifestream River (one of which is no longer a full coven thanks to our efforts).
Addendum: During my research in Rebirth's library before we embarked on our adventure, I heard rumors of the Library of Banakor, located east of Dragon's Wing Mountain, which might contain useful information unavailable elsewhere. If we ever discover Dragon's Wing Mountain on our explorations, we should consider looking for this library.