Red Carpet Massacre

From DQWiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Contents

The adventure involves the Isles of Freedom.

Summary

Adventure: Red Carpet Massacre
GM: Mandos
Session: Autumn 813 WK
Location: Chez Mitchinson
Level: Medium

Party

Icarone - Human Solar Celestial played by Manu Erwin

Teeanna, A Fae Princess and Mind Mage played by Hannah


Adventure Full

Astrology
There's not so many now, still standing on their feet.

The knives are out and singing so sweet.
Engaged with sharper minds that cut you when you meet.
Ain't the place to mess around.
When someone wants to take you down.

Employer
The Guild.
Mission
A boat is noted to be leaving Seagate Docks on the 8th of Fruit 813 with a large number of corpses on board.
Pay
Double Guild Rate plus salvage

Scribe Notes

8th Fruit 813 - Where we are hired, oh and also need to save the world!

Teeanna, Dr Sam and I are at Dramus' when a guild security member requests Teeanna's assistance (and ours by default as we happen to there) to approach the D'Abran fae regarding what they know about corpses on a boat leaving the harbour as well as everything else going on in the aisles of freedom. Easy!! The gold dragon Roche is involved. Something about the drow per modern histories. Stone elves that are buried. Oh yes, the world might end in three months or so.

"Madeiras Elvedas" may be the best fae court to talk to initially. Bunt is the "bispothetiste" of the court. We get wings from the Lord of the Bats who seems like he would like some company. I thank him and get triple duration!! We take the slow portal and then fly the rest of the way. Teeanna yells at us to not to land in the open space north of the village and east of the river due to many Fairy rings there. We find a clearing to land in and Sam notices a dragon shaped indent in the ground which also has a ritual on it of "release"!

We spot a pixie trying to steal the gift to Bunt, and once it recognises Teeanna gets really worried. Bunt arrives, welcomes us, and takes us to the court where we're introduced to Timp and Mary who tell us about Roche (their neighbour until five to six years ago) who years ago turned 10,000 elves into stone in preparation for some future battle. A guild party woke him about 5-6 years ago and he released the stone elves and left.

Timp reveals he is under compulsion and cannot tell us some information we likely need so we should visit the wisewomen who may be able to tell us more. We end the day with food, drink and song which Timp assures us will not put us into magical sleep as we are not in a fae realm.

9th Fruit 813 - Where Trimble tells us the future, we learn to fly with pixie dust!!!!!, and read some really boring runes

I get up early-ish to purify and enjoy breakfast and a little later Teeanna & Sam also awake. Bunt takes us to the wisewomen, a very old dryad by the name of Trimble and her weeping willow. She has seen the future although also has compulsion so cannot tell all. What she can tell us is as follows;

  • a creature trapped in the Isles who others have been trying to free
  • there is a small number of Fae in the Isles, some are also trying to prevent the release
  • Roche cannot be foretold
  • We must ask the dragon elves (fae) about their business
  • The stone elves are in a location guarding a great evil and they are where the guild party left them
  • Lord Arrindale is active in the Isles, however she does not know if he is seeking to free the creature
  • Elder fae spirits know about the creature and placed the compulsion (geas) on Trimble and others as a "racial secret"
  • River of blood that needs to be stopped - is near a coast - will happen on a day of power - the most likely is end of "Vintage" as is a time of decay
  • Kit knows where or has communicated with the elder spirits
  • Haann, Tari, Everan, Kit are some of the people who may know more…..

She speaks in the voice of prophecy:

There's not so many now, still standing on their feet
The knives are out and singing so sweet
Engaged with sharper minds that cut you when you meet
Ain't the place to mess around
When someone wants to take you down


Trimble "glows" Sam's bulb and says it will grow purple flowers.

Trimble gives Teeanna a dryad tree seed to be the host for a dryad wisewoman should she need one.

After we leave Trimble a pixie "Strumble" appears on Sam's shoulder, offering to guide us to where the stone elves were buried, which we graciously accept.

A shortish stroll through the nearby beech forest brings us to a bluff where we find a magical opening. The pixie tells us the stone elves were in this tunnel as it is on a magical line that happens to pass under the village. As we proceed into the tunnel we see it is perfectly square! There are regular humanoid chunks missing from the wall so it seems this is where the elves were.

There is a gap between each approximate group of one thousand.

I ask the pixie if he can help us fly and he sprinkles pixie dust so we can fly!! I am sooooo excited and speed off!! Moments later I exit the tunnel so have to turn around - oh no wrong way! Once turned around I speed back and moments later everything goes black.

Teeanna and Sam bring me around. They walked for half an hour to get here, I must have flown really fast!! The room I awaken in is a big square with golden doors to one side. The walls are covered in carvings in some sort of old elvish that Teeanna says appear to be a story about a hero. There isn't anything else in this room, or the next, apart from more doors through to a final room with a bed and six cots. A guild note (from Kin) advises us the story carved in the walls about the hero is rubbish and there is nothing of value In the rooms.

The pixie tells us of seeing the hero and the stone elves awakening along with some elder elves and some guild members.

Teeanna spends the next 2 days reading the wildly inconsistent stories on the walls.

I practice pixie dust flying until the dust wears off and then am incredibly bored. Thankfully Sam and I are able to discuss plant and gardening theory to pass the remaining time.

11th Fruit 813 - Where we finally finish reading the boring runes & then I fly home really fast!!!!

Finally Teeanna finishes reading the carvings and they are in fact all rubbish so all three of us also sign the note agreeing there is nothing of value here, Strumble sprinkles pixie dust on us and then speed down the tunnel. Well I speed in seconds and the others take half an hour, they are so slow!

I cast Wings on us all thanks to Sam's amulet and we set off for ??? And twenty minutes later I arrive. And then have to wait 2-3 hours for the others. This pixie dust is fast!! Best way to fly ever!!! I want to fly with pixie dust all the time!!

Then we take the slow portal home to Seagate.

We request the library staff to start researching overnight while we retire for the evening.

12th Fruit 813 - Where Teeanna plants her dryad tree seed and we investigate the Temple of the Drow God

A lot of great library research is done by Sam and summarised for Teeanna and I.

"I don't know where we're going, I'm just the navigator" - Icarone 12th Fruit 813

We need to plant Teeanna's dryad tree seed so we head to Asheth. Upon arrival I enjoy some banapple cider and banapple beer that has been brewing from my rapidly spreading banapple trees. They are spreading well, both here and in Alusia!

Teeanna decides to plant the dryad tree seed near her apple tree near the 2nd heart tree.

We decide to investigate the Temple of the Drow God before heading to Insel der Freiheit by Star Wings.

>> Question for when I DA SAM: where are the rest of his bits?

We arrive at a big obsidian quarry with a structure at the bottom. As we move past the columns at the front towards the door we see two partially hidden dragons, one on either side of the door - and after a minor start, realise they are carved!

Sam and I DA the area to discover the general area out here has a protection magic that is triggered by "evil".

As we are not feeling particularly "evil" we figure we'll proceed into the actual temple itself. As Sam steps through the inky-black doorway (which we assume is magical darkness preventing you from seeing inside), he is engulfed in what appears to be dragon flame! He is thankfully unharmed and one of his fleas reveals (via DA that is) that the nature of magic was "removing taint". As he 'appears' unharmed and I don't think I have anything that is tainted, I step through the doorway and am engulfed in flame. A quick inspection reveals none of my items are missing however Lord Surturs Bane is now slightly glowing (guess the last of the "taint" is gone!).

Now that we can see the room we have stepped into (the magical darkness is only on the actual doorway itself), we observe a mighty carved dragon statue at the end of the room with another inky black doorway between its paws. Sam tells me the dragon flame came from that statue the very moment I stepped through the doorway so there does not look to be any way of avoiding it.

While Teeanna divests herself of some items she is "keeping so that others cannot use them for bad things", Sam and I investigate a smaller antechamber to our right. Inside we find a large table overflowing with evil items, which we conclude are where "tainted" items go. We return to the main chamber and are blasted by dragon flames again, so it looks like items are never leaving the collection chamber.

I hear a scream of anguish and torment in my mind so terrifying that I pass out.

I awake with the worst headache of my life. I cannot remember what we did last night (as with this headache we surely must have been drinking heavily) and it feels like an imp is driving iron spikes into my head. After an eternity the imp changes to only using tacks and I am able to get on with understanding what happened. Turns out Teeanna cast an ESP on the area and because of the amulets Sam gave us, we all suffered the effects. She was only knocked out for a short time and then had a slight headache (which for a Mind Mage is worrying), however Sam and I have no such protection. Upon awakening she came through the doorway into our chamber, tried to bring us around with no success so

TEEANNA MAKES A FIRE AND TEA AND EVERYTHING ALL BY HERSELF!!!

A soothing tea and a nourishing banapple or three help me come back to myself, a cautious DA of the 2nd doorway reveals "preservation" triggered by "type of container" so Teeanna and I venture into the next room. Sam hangs back as he knows some Drow and is worried there is some protection that will trigger based on this.

The 2nd room is full of two thousand elven skin banners with individual Drow sigils. The preservation magic is keeping the souls of the Drow who murdered millions in torment. Yet another inky black doorway lies in front of us, this time triggering based on language skills, we assume that is the doorway Sam should not go through so he comes into this chamber to look around.

Teeanna and I go through the 3rd inky black doorway to find a room full of plaques telling the very specific story of the first Drow and why he and his "family" were captured and kept here. There is a fourth doorway ahead of us, although this time nice, warm, bright light streams out with "purification" magic.

Teeanna and I walk through to find the room the first Drow must have been held for slow weakening by the purification light. It is a wonderful room that I could stay in, so lovely and warm and nice and good.

Finding nothing else, we leave the temple and head out of the quarry to the nearby forest to camp for the evening. Sam and I take watch duty overnight to let Teeanna recover from her fire and tea making exertions.

13th Fruit 813 WK - Where Father Broc joins us and we make our way to the Isles

My morning purification is unsuccessful - no doubt the after effects of yesterday's headache. We star wing our way back to the guild, then to the library where our assigned librarian has made a connection of sorts to Mortimers presence and being attacked while flying in Insel der Freiheit. Seems that Mortimer and others were blessed by Roche and a possible cause is an air spirit hostile to Roche.

Party: So as long as we don't travel with Kin, Mortimer, or Father Broc we are all good.
Guild: We have an additional member for your group, let me introduce you to Father Broc.

Sam to Father Broc: No touching me with your holy weapon. Keep it firmly secured.

Guild Security give us bracelets of Exsanguination counters with 3 charges each and advise us to head for "Setagen" as that is the likely port the boat with corpses will pass through.

We make our way to the Filgaso forest via portal and wings, briefly stop for Sam to have a ritual disguise from Chaff's helpers so he looks human, as they don't like orcs here. Chaaff greets us, tells us not to fly back towards his mountain (his counter magics) and extends a special welcome to Teeanna to the island. He advises that orcs on the island are still attacking people, and are generally located in Northern Umshatar.

I miscast Witchsight, lose my hair (all over my body!), Sam smells like sulphur, and Teeanna's eyes look like demons! Oh no, being on a tropical island with no hair, this will be so uncomfortable!

After travelling a great distance (according to Teeanna) as well as a portal, we arrive at the dwarven kingdom and are greeted by Bilmin. The dwarves are happy for us to place portals outside however not in their kingdoms/tunnels. They are also happy for Broc to use their portals, and guide us to their portal to the Devils Claw. Once through the portal we see the dense jungle beyond the tunnel, so elect to stop for food, drink, and the night.

Herb Frog, Thoughts of Darkness, 36 Green Tempest (13 Fruit) - Where 13th Fruit seems never-ending, Sam unleashes an elemental in the jungle, and we make our way to Setagen

Next morning I am distracted from my attempt to purify by having no hair as well as the odd realisation that its still the 13th Fruit because we've travelled to the other side of the world, at least I'm fairly sure. Broc gets the sense that something is assisting rituals, and we find casting magic is easier. Broc wants to check the local stream however the bush/jungle is very dense, so Sam encourages the jungle to let us through, making passing through much easier on our way to the water. Teeanna's plant empathy tells us this area of jungle is "loved". There is no opening in the canopy above the water, so Sam persuades the trees to open a space above us so we can fly all the way up to clear air. It's a huge canopy so that takes awhile so Sam occupies himself with sorting leaves into the right sizes. Then we're up and away, or at least Broc and I are, as Teeanna goes back down to the ground when Sam doesn't come out. She has to strongly encourage him to come with us, however before leaving he casts an uncontrolled Earth Elemental to finish tidying up the leaves for him, and then Teeanna and he join us above the canopy. We all hear a very loud cry of rage as we fly away and are a bit worried we may have stirred up something other than the elemental!

We fly to a cove near Bangkalan so the locals don't see us, and then proceed on foot along the coastline for a few hours until we reach the fishing village. It's recently deserted and we soon realise we are the cause as Teeanna reads some of the local minds who are hiding in cellars, convinced we are raiders, somehow associated with "Batibati". Father Broc looks unsuccessfully for the price list of the boat we wish to hire, however with no one coming out hiding, we eventually leave some money and a note, and he announces loudly in the local language "Folksprach" that we are renting the boat and they can pick it up from Setagen.

We sail for several hours, arriving at Setagen after midnight, Broc pays the outrageous docking and other on the spot fees charged by the night port master, Sam haggles a couple of rooms at "The Docksider", along with some welcome food (quite spicy) and ale. The rooms are secure and the night passes uneventfully.

Termite Frog (14 Fruit) - Where we meet the powerful people in Setagen, trade with Vidal, and have dinner with the powers that trained the Powers of Light

After purification, breakfast and a refreshing cleanse at the bathhouse, we observe a variety of visitors from other lands, with weapons distinctly lacking, and while heading to the docks to track down The Black Rose, notice one of the men from the Docksider common room seems to be following us.

Broc arranges with the harbour master to hire sailors to return our borrowed boat and also asks about the vessel we are searching for. Upstairs we are interviewed by an elderly gentlemen Ligur Egnatius and joined by the following man Sulla Cordius who turns out to be representing the prince, who doesn't actually live here (the governor does though).. Once they establish we are from the guild, they become friendlier to deal with and we discover that The Black Rose was stolen approximately 9 months ago, the captain and first mate pushed off, pursued by Insel Der Freiheit ships, however disappeared in the same manner as described to us by guild security. We are reminded that overt displays of magic are discouraged and I discover Ligur Egnatius is a water Mage and Sulla Cordius a rune Mage. We decide to visit Vidal the "bone man" as he often tells the future for the local families.

We head to the palace via our lodgings so we can wing away without being seen. We fly north to the small basalt island that we name Basalt Rock Isle where Broc creates a portal, TEEANA MAKES TEA, Sam makes lunch, and I plant a banapple seed in the meager soil. I am confident of its future.

We narrowly avoid crashing into the canopy when our wings give out, however I just manage to recast them to prevent Teeanna, Broc and I crashing, and Sam somehow lands safely and stands on top of the canopy! Cast on Sam and we're away again!

We arrive at Vidal's boneyard, figure out Sam changed to a duck to avoid plummeting to his death, however we didn't see that due to the more powerful illusion cast by Chaff's helpers. No wonder he was able to apparently stand on the canopy with all his gear, he was actually a duck!

As we try to work out how to change him back, he is suddenly reverted to normal (still under the human illusion) by an "everything" counterspell, followed by Vidal greeting us on mind speech (without Teeanna targetting him!) and inviting us to come in.

His current form is that of a cherub and ever interested in the bargain he offers:

  • Broc: 3 enquiries for a drop of his blood
  • Teeanna: 2 enquiries for 5 minutes of her time
  • Sam: 3 enquiries for a favour
  • Me: 1 enquiry for the banapple seed I gave him earlier (I offered out of politeness of course) and 2 enquiries for a drop of my blood

Vidal tells us that an enquiry is not a single question, rather a general matter he will provide information about and we don't have to worry about specific wording as he will know what we are seeking.

Our enquiries are:

Broc

  1. What is the best way to find The Black Rose? The Life or Death Shaman should be able to detect it. He warns Sam and I not to visit the life shaman as we will age very quickly. The life shaman is south of Lake Amar (a blue lake)
  2. How do we prevent the end of the world? Continue on our current path. He adds that preventing the use of the corpses would delay an evil that would impact the Isles.
  3. How can I make my two long spear weapons easier to carry? Vidal gave him a token to speak to his brother Romache who should be able to help

Me

  1. Who is the agent behind the corpses/evil/everything going on regarding the end of the world? The Death Shaman (Lord Arandell) and the Cult of Exsanguinationists seem likely
  2. How to fly like a pixie with pixie dust? At the moment you would never become an actual pixie, however could become fae with own dust powers
  3. Can you start me on the path to becoming fae? Yes. He took me aside, drained a lot of blood from my arms, changed into a tree guardian like I've seen in Asheth, drained and mixed sap into my blood which he then had me drink. Apparently my eyes sparkled a bit when the others see me and I'm quite pale from blood loss, however Sam empathies me and says I'm fine!

We retire to the nearby temple for the evening, and while the rest of us set up dinner, Broc creates a portal in case we need to come back here easily. Vidal joins us for dinner in angel form, and Broc prays in the temple to invite Ijel to dinner and briefly vanishes, reappearing with Ijel as well as Chaff. We have three dragons to dinner! I obtain permission from all three to plant banapples here on the isle, happy day :)

Ijel relates how long ago he and his brothers gathered, trained, and guided some acolytes who became what we think of as the Powers of Light, in order to even the balance against the Powers of Dark.

We engage in polite dinner conversation as well as Sam's "favour" with Vidal. In order to tame the wild ork tribe he would have to fight the local ork chief to the death for control on the tribe so he could then begin the civilisation of the local orks. Given violating his pacifist oaths would mean losing his Earth magics for some time, Sam determines it best to pursue this course after we save the world. Ijel gives him a copper egg to break in order to proceed. My banapple tart goes down a treat, probably should have made three!

Once the dragons depart, all of us except Broc get down to some serious drinking as we've been through a lot today. It must be the excitement of the days events but I feel like I drank a lot more than normal before turning in.

Parrot Frog (15 Fruit) Finally the 15th Fruit - Where we gain information from the Life Shaman, discover crab claw clocks can't tell time, and crash into the sea

I awake with no hangover! It must be Vidal's influence in the area which is nice of him. My main gauche and other iron things feel uncomfortable to my touch this morning, must be part of the change to a pixie, so I carefully discard my daggers and shortsword here for some future traveller who may be in need. I'll keep my main-gauche for the moment as will be good to have the defense until the very last!

Vidal kindly transports us via tree portal to a village near the Life Shaman. Broc and Teeanna go to meet her while Sam and I remain at the village so we don't age faster than normal and I look around for suitable banapple planting locations.

Apparently the Life Shaman Garserril appears as an Erelheine wearing a dress which appears to show life and death all over the isle. She advises The Black Rose is near the mouth of the river Kota. Teeanna and Broc relate how their hearts beat faster than normal while visiting her, so am glad Sam and I didn't go!

I planted some banapple seeds while we waited so the villagers can be fed for a lifetime!! After Teeanna and Broc return, Broc finds the villagers have need of axes and saws for the local hardwood, and we lunch with the villagers before leaving for Kota.

Flying south along the river, Broc is attacked by an air spell (seems to confirm the librarian philosophers theory about people "favoured" by Roche) so we water land quickly. We elect to rune portal to Basalt Rock Isle and fly on to Kota. Sam provides me a crab claw to use as a crab claw clock!! Unfortunately crabs can't tell time, so it's a useless clock!

So we don't crash while flying at night I cast Witchsight at a reduced rank so it will run out before wings, and just as it does run out, Broc sees a pillar of light that is red (normally white) which he thinks is Batibati.

We fly most of the night and a few hours before dawn Sam crashes into the sea from exhaustion. Broc and Teeanna rescue him before he drowns while I circle above and finally we land on the nearby coast to take a much needed break.

Elephant Frog (16th Fruit) - Where Teeanna is kidnapped, and then rescued!!

Sam and Teeanna are exhausted from the nights events (Teeanna did have to carry her own gear for quite a while!) and collapse into sleep while Broc wards around our campsite which is slightly back in the jungle. I get a fire and food started and then also get some sleep.

After what seems mere moments, I awake to the high pitched scream of Teeanna being stolen by a winged creature who dropped in over the top of Broc's rune wards. Broc manages to get a crossbow shot off and wings it slightly while I cast StarWings on us to give chase. We are slightly faster than it and after a few minutes of flying, it dives down through the canopy and we follow as we can't let Teeanna get lost in the jungle! The creature turns out to be a man with shapechanged arms as wings and four of his accomplices are waiting in the clearing and attack us. We defeat them (although I'm knocked out with a big chest wound, Teeanna is very wounded by the cold iron belt of her attacker and Broc narrowly avoids losing a hand). "World Painted Blood" is the transport spell that brought them here. They were all hired in a pub XXX <name to be provided by Mandos> by "Koren", had a ritual cast upon them (which made them blood brothers so got bonuses when any of them died), instructed to guard against odd things like lights at night, kidnap the lady traveller and woke up here.

We fly back to our original camp (no idea how I cast the spells in my condition, let alone flew) and then towards Kota, stopping for the night a small distance away so we can walk there tomorrow. The night passes uneventfully, although I am in much pain.

Bat Frog (17th Fruit) - Where we hand prisoners to Vidal, there is big trouble in little Kota, we are attacked again, and we discover it's the Day of Knowledge

Sam resurrects the shape changed man (Columbanas Francas) and Teeanna verifies his answers to our questioning via Telepathy. "Koren" came off The Black Rose" ~7 days ago, however they were only given their mission 2 days ago. They were to take Teeanna back to the pub where they were hired. Apparently "Koren" talks to the dead, which makes sense as he was on the boat. He enacted the blood ritual so seems to be an exsanguinist.

He describes Kota and it sounds like the same layout as Setagen, we guess this is because of the Lunar Empire. After a lot of talking, and offers of money he agrees to not work for "Koren" for awhile. Sam resurrects his colleague XXX and Columbanas relays our request. Sam then brands them as a reminder they were brought back to life, and they help me through Broc's portal back to Vidal's place.

Vidal gives them tokens and they head to the temple nearby, hopefully for a new start and Broc relays the events and information that we know so far. Vidal says this is worth one of his "questions" and Broc asks him to please heal my massive chest wound. He does so by placing his hand inside my chest, and my bones and skin knit back together in front of my eyes. He pulls his hand out as the last skin heals, and appears to leave a (his?) mark behind, a scar in the shape of what Broc says is a variant of the ancient elvish rune for knowledge.

I thank Vidal for healing me and Broc for trading a question and we make our goodbyes, portaling back to the beach near Kota and then opting to fly over the water, hoping our wings will be mistaken for sun glinting off the waves. We spy an incredibly large black four masted galleon from some distance away, looks like we've found The Black Rose!

Sam and I sneak right past the guards into the town however Broc and Teeanna are questioned a little and Broc is strongly advised to not walk around with his weapons. Kota appears to be approximately twice the size of Setagen and we get separate inns and rooms so we are seen together. We then all head to the docks, coordinating our movements over Mind Speech, to investigate further.

Sam and I purchase three barrels of cheap oil, have them delivered to The Black Rose, and then Sam breaks them open with the intent of burning the ship. We notice a couple of guards moving in our direction and a small crowd starting to gather a little further away (The Black Rose is the only ship in this part of the dock), so Sam and I figure we should quickly light the oil and wing away, however Sam decides he no longer wants to light the oil, so I stop preparing in order to do, however when I start to light the oil, I feel a pain in my new scar and don't want to either.

The guards and crowd are still watching us, however thanks to Broc's quick thinking, we pretend to be crew arguing over cleaning duties and they lose interest. Broc consecrates the boat and tells us the many spirits who had been tied to it have all been released and moved into the towns pillar of light. Now I feel ok to burn the boat, which confirms for me that Vidal was telling me before that it was the wrong thing to do. The boat is evil and has been used for years with blood magics. One of two cabins is full of blood wall and ceiling, and the other has blood although appears to have been somewhat cleaned.

Sam picks up a magical lamp of transportation, which seems likely to be how they were getting rapidly from place to place. We know we must destroy this boat, so Broc rigs a delayed source of fire to start the oil, we cut the ropes so it will drift away from the wooden dock, and leave with the intention of quickly gathering our possessions from our inns and leaving town swiftly, however upon reaching the shore Broc collapses from exhaustion.

He is quickly back on his feet though, so we head towards our inns. As we near them, there is a loud "woosh" sound from the direction of the harbour, so we quickly (but casually) retrieve our gear and weapons from our inns and head towards a different gate although are soon spotted by guards so we fly away on wings as the ship burns in the harbour.

Broc realises the column of light above the town is black (most others have been white and Batibati being red), and Broc and Sam see a small red ("hot" accordingly to Sam) light pop up from the governors building and shoot away north east.

We rune portal back to the Life Shaman's area so Broc and Teeanna can visit her, while Sam and I visit the village.

Upon entering the village however, Sam and I are attacked by a group of five (similar to last time), however Sam captures all of them with giant hands of earth! We knock most of them out while we wait for Broc and Teeanna to return.

Shortly afterwards they return, telling us that Garserril says the corpses are traveling upriver towards Kotawarigin. Bat Shaman is her closest neighbour who lives behind the waterfall at the north of Blue Lake. She tells Teeanna that she and her compatriot (turns out to mean me!) to beware the "natives". Broc then interrogates the awake mercenary and we hear the same story as last time. "Circle of Beliefs" seems to be the name of the blood brother ritual. We offer them the same deal as the other group, Sam brands them after they accept, and we rune portal to Vidal where we happen upon three Celestials who are visiting him. There is some initial caution, however fighting does not break out, and they leave after consulting with him.

Vidal says our story of recent events is worth a question, Sam asks for ways to speed healing, and Vidal does something to him similar when he started my transformation into a pixie. Sam remembers a region of coast that is covered in salt caused by a curse, that may be powered by fae. The scribe notes we have with us, indicate the curse was lifted and a fae "Rio" may be able to tell us more. Sam backfires some wards, Broc communes with Ijel and is told today is the "Day of Knowledge". He also divinates the two rings taken from the recent batch of mercenaries, as well as the lamp of translocation found on The Black Rose. I read the night sky and get the following:

  • The labour force is required soon
  • The disappearances are connected
  • The final sacrifice has better options

Shortly after completing the ritual and passing on the answers I get a sharp pain in my back and fall to the ground in agony.....this is the last thing I remember.

Life Frog (18 Fruit) - Where I am reborn

Death Frog (19 Fruit) - Where I discover I'm now a Pixie, we plant a seed in lava, and tell a binder everything

I wake up just after midnight feeling very good indeed, and am greeted by a man dressed in black who welcomes me back to being one of the first races (which is a little confusing). He appears to have the same kind of aura as Vidal and the other dragon fae. He asks for my help, I of course say yes, and he disappears.

So I've just agreed to help either Romache or Larth at some point in the future in some unspecified way....

Broc and Sam come in and I discover I have wings!! and seem to have become a Pixie!! It seems that yesterday (18th Fruit) was the Day of Rebirth, which seems to explain my rapid transformation. I watch all night while Broc and Sam get some much needed sleep, and then we all purify after waking in the morning.

It feels really nice here and I don't really feel like leaving, however Teeanna is with the Tree Shaman learning more about trees and dryads and things, so we need to go plant the tree seed nut in order to fix the lava hole. We feel to the rough location of the lava hole and find a manor house that has split right down the middle! We easily land as there is no canopy here and lots of dead trees everywhere. After a few cautionary DA's, I throw the tree nut down towards the lava and watch eagerly from near the edge as I've never seen a tree nut sprouting before. After only falling for 500 feet it expands rapidly with tendrils punching into the walls and pulls the split earth together with a massive rumbling of the earth.

We fly back to Vidal's for lunch and I thankfully confirm I still like the taste of banapples!!

We rune portal to Black Basalt Banapple Isle and then fly to Setagen, landing in the governors building. We are met by a binder who asks for the information we found from our visit to the wise man. We relay the burning of the boat in Kota and where we believe the corpses are. He asks us to notify the prince and possibly the queen of the recent events.

We take a walk outside the town so Broc and Sam can create a warded portal near where I plant a banapple seed. We stay in our original inn and have a pleasant sleep.

Ant Frog (20 Fruit) - Where we get confused by the local calendar

After purifying and enjoying a delicious breakfast, we head to the local priests to understand the local calendar. It turns out the local date is 12 Ant (the day), Frog (the week), 10 Thoughts of Darkness (the month), 36 Azure Horizon (the year) and it may also be the "Day of Ignorance" (although they could be pulling our legs on this one until we confirm by looking at an almanac). They say the next ominous period is 5 days that begin 14 Frog, Death, 8th Everliving Sun, 36 Azure Horizon which is 58 days from today (which is 4 weeks and 2 days, as they have a 14 day week here).

We decide to collect Teeanna from the Tree Shaman and so portal to the big ridge on the way. Just before moving on, the man in black appears, telling me my services are now required, touches my arm and there is a flash of light.

Father Broc takes over while Icarone is absent - Yet another day missing someone or other.

We know that we are expected to have an audience with the Prince of Tanah Boemboe in Pasir tomorrow morning so we think how we are gong to get there now that out source of flying magics has flittered off on his pixie wings doing Gabriel knows what! We acknowledge that flying is now more problematic so decide that we'll go with the ailing option. We head down into Setagens port and look around for someone selling boats but with no luck.

I note the light on in the harbourmasters office and find our old friend Grimes (aka Grumpy Grimes) there. I ask about a boat to buy (say 12ft long, something that we can carry easily, with a stepped sail and oars) and he reminds us that its 10 in the evening so no luck. But he does say that one over there we can have for 6 shillings (6GS) and he won't notice where its gone. We quickly bu the boat and make our way through the town carrying the boat between Sam and I. We are stopped by almost every patrol but using our token we are allowed onwards until we pass out through the gates so we can wlak to our portal point on the volcanic plateau to the south.

We pass through the portal and return to our initial portal point on Obsidian Banapple Portal rock Island (to the east of the Plateau of Decay) and we find its midnight.

Tree Frog (21 Fruit) Sailing Day

Father Broc continues while Icarone is absent.

We cast some spells while making sure the boat is set up well and then we three (Sam, Teeanna and I) board the boat which I name the Casmira I and we cast off heading for Pasir. I sail the vessel while Sam and Teeanna sleep for the passage across the open waters. I have a good wind and reasonably calm sailing weather which means that we arrive in Pasir just before midday.

Pasir is all that they say it is with its large city, obsidian breakwaters annd bustling commerce. We dock and are met by a squad of ready guards who inquire of our business. We inform him that we have to see the Prince and show our tokens. These townguards are led by an officious 'officer' Melitas Fardius who doesn't believe us (we think) and looks wary of us as armed and armoured as we are, so he offers to 'escort' us to the palace and has his men carry my heavy polearms, crossbows etc. Walking through the city we note the old city and new city walls and the newer walls etc - obviously a town that has grown and grown. There are lots of formal, well-tended gardens and areas of bureaucracy (mainly in the old town which is half the size of Setagen), obvious signs of a prosperous and busy realm.

They walk us to the palace where we meet another old friend Sulla Cordius, which we think irritates Melitas just a little and who has been expecting us. He dismisses Melitas and shows us to our suite of rooms where we quickly brief him on recent events and he tells us that we are invited to an intimate dinner with the Prince tonight so we are free to rest or do whatever until the evening. I immediately have a sleep while the others idle the afternoon away. I wake before 5pm and we all bath and refresh ourselves.

We arrive for the intimate dinner and discover its with the Prince and his extended family - some 50 men, woman and children all up and we have a pleasant dinner and a good series of general discussions. Once dinner has ended we accompany Caelistis Pescenniu Paetas (the Prince of Tanah Boemboe) on a tour of the gardens and have some more in depth discussions. He suggests we relate this information to the Queen and lets slip that she is an enchantress (E&E) and we accede that we will go there next. We discover that people are going missing (more regularly than normal and in greater numbers) in nearby areas and the marauding Orcs (left over mercenaries from the recent war 801-807wk, who live to the west on the borders of the province) are suspected but if we could find out what is causing this then he'd appreciate our help. Also the Orcs are worth 60gs a head. Once we have passed on our information and had a pleasant walk where we gave him (well his gardeners really) a banapple and some seeds we bid him goodnight and that we'd depart in the morning. He extended a further welcome for the future and made offers if we would train his family in alternative magic use as his family are almost all water mages - and sea captains!

The night passed uneventfully.

Water Frog (22 Fruit) Depart the city

Father Broc continues while Icarone is absent.

We arise, breakfast and make our goodbyes. We exit the city to the north of the city and are taken north along a river to a point where I create another portal point. We wave to our guide and then portal back to Setagen.

We walk from Portal into Setagen looking for passage on a boat to the Queen of the Isles city of Banderjamaren. We arrange for one departing 2am the following morning so we decide to visit the Artificer via portals. Things go awry and the day passes fruitlessly. We return to Setagen later after discovering that Today is the Day of Movement where movement is vastly affected with possible overshoots of objectives – so we decide to stay in Setagen for the day. We bathe, see a chandler to get an almanac drawn up and Abito Opsius arranges one for us a hefty price. The evening passes and we get down to the docks to alight our vessel. Next day is Sanity Day Monkey, Monkey at 2am sees us on the good ship Pasir's Lion. We go below to our cabin and we rest up for the next few days. Millipede Monkey passes on the ship and we go into Woodpecker Monkey again without major events. Woodpecker Monkey 10pm sees us get off the ship at our destination and we are again met by some armed guards who inquire as to our intent and who then escort us to the palace. There we leave our guards under Julianus Floridas and meet with Elpidius Veridas an advisor to the queen who bids us rest in some rooms before meeting with the queen soon – perhaps tomorrow.

Vine Monkey – the day of Harming (26 Fruit) - where I am reunited with the party!

We wake and wait to see the queen but we are told its not an auspicious day according to predictions, and so we inform Elpidius of the prince's concerns instead. We are then asked to investigate an unusual occurrence - someone has appeared, unconscious, in one of the other suites in the palace. We aren't surprised to see that it's Icarone, who's all tuckered out from a five-day drinking session.

I am reunited with my party!! Sam checks me and says I feel like I've been away for a month or so, with very little nourishment, although they say only five days have passed here!

I relate my dreams to them.

The man in black (Larth) took me through the woods and along a misty path, and then into a cave. He turned to me and said "Go in there and drink of the water. You should survive". Entering the cave there was a trickle of dark water that ran down the wall and into a natural bowl. After drinking some I fell into a deep sleep and had a dream. After the dream I woke and a voice in my head said "Drink again". I experienced 5 dreams this way. The voice finally said "Rest now, I will send your friends".

Dream 1 - seems to be Faustinius, uncle to the king in waiting - possible future per Vidal

A man stands upon a red carpet, blood pools at his feet and he reaches down and picks up a crushed crown in his hands. "Finally Nephew, you have been most useful to me. Now I have the power to get through the protections around your mother and I will destroy her as I have you." He strides off up a hill and I can hear the screams of people dying, crushed by something and their torment added to by the man as he walks upon them.

Dream 2 - has happened per Vidal

An ornate desk in a small room, upon it lies a wide flat bowl filled with a dark liquid. There is chanting and the bowl turns inky black. From beyond the liquid there is a sensation of chaotic evil. A man seated at the desk lifts the bowl and drinks deeply, and as he does his eyes turn black and a feeling of power builds. He speaks 'I will see to your wishes Master, our spies in Carzala have sent more information about those on the islands, of the four one is too much the coward to attack his enemies, another a weak woman who has survived by allying with those in power, a priest of some significant ability and a gardener who found a magic sword and thinks himself a warrior. Only the woman is a concern as she has a link to people of power, so she must be kept alive and comfortable so they do not come looking for her. The others can be disposed of as we...." His words are cut off as someone enters the room, a yound maid with an armload of kindling, "My apologies my lord I did not realise you were....." her eyes widen as she realise the scene, she screams and turns to run but not before a gout of fire kills her where she stands. More flames play over the body until nothing is let but ashes.

Dream 3 - could be the werewolf from the curse - has happened per Vidal

On a hill by a tree under the noonday sun a ritual is performed. It doesn't seem like much, a couple of men, some chanting and brief flash of power. It is night, an old women is feeding the chickens by her back door, the chickens become anxious and disturbed and then there is nothing but a feed bowl and a slowly spreading pool of blood. A young woman says goodby to her lover and leaves a haybarn strightening her clothes, behind her there is a scream of a young man in agony, she runs. An old man investigates a noise at night, I see the terror in his eyes as his chest is raked by large claws, his throat torn away in a spray of blood and an anguished howl echoes across the landscape. I am running, low to the ground on all fours, I am emaciated and hungry, my stomache a knot inside me, an all consuming pain that consumes my thoughts, I see prey, leap and rend, but once it is dead I find I am unable to eat it. I continue on consumed by my hunger.

Dream 4 - same voice as first dream, seems likely to be Faustinius - has happened per Vidal - under the Plataeu of Decay per Vidal - kyanite crystal globes

Deep underground a crystal emerges from a fissure like lava deep under the sea. Slowly it swells like a balloon until it is a couple of feet wide. Then there is an almighty crack and the crystal breaks off from where it had formed and rolls a few feet. This process is repeated until 5 crystal globes lie in the darkness. From the darkness a voice I have heard before says "Let them cool, we will return a week hence to collect and test them".

Dream 5 - has happened per Vidal

Two men sit on cushions in a tent upon a grassland. A: "Are your men ready?" B: "Yes, we will be able to provide you with more than enough men to protect the area you requested, do you have the payment" A: "We have faced setbacks, however we have a team off the island looking for others that fit your needs. Fairy kind are hard to find if they do not want to be found, but we will have your payment as requested." B: "What are these setbacks, why are we not to receive the one we want?" A: "The people protecting her were more capable that we had been led to believe, she has also spent time with the Old Man in the Boneyards and you told us that she may no longer be suitable if this comes to pass" B: "The occasions when a Fae Princess leaves their realm and travels virtually unprotected are numbered less than 10 in a thousand years, I don't care where she has been, get her for us, a protected Princess is worth more than some sylph you may find in the woods. An unprotected one may be the solution to all of our problems."


We discuss the visions with Elpidius Veridas, and he fills in some relevant background. The Queen has a brother who has been banished "Faustinius" and was thought to be killed by a previous guild party (Broc was part of it). He took some men and raided a town. They relate their recent travels for the past five days (for them) and warn not to portal on the Day of Movement, as you may overshoot and arrive out to sea. Broc divinates me while Sam converses with the gardeners. He discovers I have consumed five draughts of Oracle's elixir which seems to match the five dreams I had, with each draught consumed over roughly 18 hours.

It seems that Light Monkey is an auspicious day to meet the Queen (and maybe King), so we portal to see Vidal, after Broc wards a small house outside the town, and Sam and I discuss the practicality of raising a large mound of earth up to the second floor and through the window so can be in touch with the earth in order to cast. I also stretch my wings and commune with the local bees.

Vidal tells us my cave was located near the Plateau of Decay and confirms that his brother Larth is the man in black. He says the creator of the kyanite crystal globes is not of this world.

Teeanna steps away with Vidal and we go back to the chapel to give them some privacy and practice drinking rum. Teenna returns after some time announcing that Vidal doesn't actually know the answers to things she wants to know about so we discuss what we should do next, and decide we should likely find the kyanite crystal globes under the Plateau of Decay before they are claimed.

Vine Monkey – the day of Harming (26 Fruit) - Big Golden Balls

Sam here, for this fragment of the story. Broc portals us to the entrance to the Dwarven caves in the Devil's Claw. We are greeted by guards who have been expecting us. They notify Pilman. They inform us they dealt with my 'rogue' (I prefer free-willed) Earth Elemental from our arrival on Herb Frog (a day of madness) on Monkey Monkey, the day of rationality. The earth elemental is now working with the dwarves, having struck some sort of bargain. See, I knew it could be done! Controlling Elementals is slavery! Pilman organises an audience with Girrim, who he introduces only as 'a kyanite expert'.

King Girrim has a blackened face, hunchback, spines, and an extra eye embedded in his cheek, all as a result of prolonged exposure to kyanite when he was a slave in Lord Arrindale's kyanite mines. These effects are not unusual or extreme compared with many of the slaves. He tells us that kyanite never comes in balls, or comes out hot. The idea of five 2' round kyanite crystals being extruded deeply disturbs him, as none of the crystals he's ever heard of have been that big. The ones that powered the Dark Circle, for example, were only about 6 inches across, and not particularly regular. He also assures us that kyanite is not golden, so we may have misunderstood that part of the dream.

As the party powers up, there is an unfortunate incident. It being a day of harm, Recuperative Drafts do twice the normal damage, and Trollskins tend to have reverse effects (and then double damage, of course). How was I to know? Only Broc is affected by the Recuperative, but the whole party is affected by the doubled reverse Trollskin (due to contagion amulets), and before I can counterspell or heal them, Broc goes all Elven on me (Sam), and I have to flee for my life. Fortunately I had already cast Strength of Stone, and with that and a healing potion, Teanna avoids dying. I wait until Broc's berserk rage (presumably also an effect of the Day of Harming) has passed, and then return. Broc then insists on Divinating me (like any of it was my fault!), and Teanna hypnotises me to protect the party (as if I don't regularly lay my life of the line for them, whenever I DA - one day a ward will go off when I lick stuff, and then they'll have to carry their own luggage). No surprises that the elven nobs stick together, as I'm only an Orc, and a servant to boot.

Eventually the elves fall into good order, and we follow King Girrim deep into the tunnels that lead to the Kyanite Mines under the Plateau of Decay. The tunnels near the mines jink often, with crawl spaces, hurdles, and narrowways, all set up to help defend the mines. However, the defences aren't made of bound earth, so any elemental would slice straight through. They aren't worried, as apparently only a fool would summon an elemental near kyanite. This is a subtle hint to Guild members - a paranoid, oppressed, cunning, devious race is prepared to leave a huge hole in their defences, because summoning an elemental near kyanite would be so horrendously stupid that the attackers would die before they endanger the otherwise meticulously prepared (did I mention paranoid) dwarves. Apparently Guild members have done this before, and left chasms of lava in their wake. Anyway, we finally get to the kyanite mines.

The kyanite mine consists of three large caverns directly above each other, joined by a single central staircase, and by a number of vertical fissures from which the kyanite crystal has been mined. The vast caverns are broken up by intermittent columns, and these, along with the heat rising from the fissures, reduce visibility so that we can't see from one side to the other. Previous parties claim that above the mines the staircase leads to four levels of living space, and then an entrance to the surface, and finally winds up the interior of Lord Arrindale's tower. It seems that at the bottom of the staircase below the deepest mines, there is an extra-planar portal.

We start our search on the level that we enter, which is the second level of the mine proper. Finding nothing, we descend the staircase, planning to search the third, lowest, level. Instead, we are diverted by the big set of double doors that lead away from the mine at the foot of the stairs. The runes on the doors power the protections for the entire stairwell. One of the doors is ajar, and there is a room beyond, covered with kyanite dust, and with a three foot round hole in the centre. There are many footprints in the dust, almost all leading to the hole, and few if any returning. We decide that somewhere that popular is a must-see, and lower ourselves down the hole on a rope. Descending 30 feet, we are at the lowest end of a gently sloping corridor that disappears into the distance. There are a dozen mutated dwarf skeletons in the corridor beneath the hole. They died in Spring 808WK (see Reach Up for the Sunrise for details). We walk up the long, long corridor.

After half an hour, and at least a mile of featureless uphill corridor, we walk through a portal into a hot summery meadow next to a small hill, or (as it turns out) a very large burial mound, around 300' across and 25' high. We are in the plane of Galacia, which seems to consist of this faerie mound, a small river, a lake, some scrubby trees, and endless mist bounding the entire planelet. Teanna detects the echoes of some ancient powerful minds, and 5,000 more ordinary patient, watching, waiting minds. These are the 5,000 Stones Elves that we learned about back in Newcourt before we learned to name our weeks after animals. We walk up the mound, with the two Fae and the Elven Lord showing no fear. On the top there are five concentric rings of standing stones. The stones are heavily warded, and taste quite mossy. We talk to the leaders of the Stones Elves (Keseren and Jhaille [?sp?]) in Eldaran via Mind Speech. The Stone Elves are waiting to defend us all from The Great Darkness, which is a creature, either a fae, or of Fae. After a long discussion in a language I really didn't follow, we seemingly don't learn much else, except that they ask us to pass a message to Roche. Message reads "Thank you".

We return to the Mines, before the Fae and Elves can start summoning, conjuring, digging, or otherwise disturbing the guardians, the fae mound, or unravelling anything else. We even convince Broc not to establish a Portal here. After another half-hour walking back down the corridor, we climb back up the rope, and enter the third level of the mines, as we had planned to some hours earlier. It doesn't take long to spot four huge spheres of kyanite near a fissure. They are just under 2' across, and weigh around 400lbs each. Teanna precogs what will happen, and it seems that if we stand around arguing, then someone (presumably the big bad guys) will arrive to collect the crystals that they left for a week in Dream 4 above.

We argue about this for a while, but quite quickly. We decide that we can't move the balls via magic, and as they weigh 400lbs each, they can only be carried by an earth elemental (voted down), or by naturally strong party members powered up by pills, drugs, potions, and (in my case) a healthy lifestyle. Broc and I strip down, as even light armour and weapons are enough to prevent us from being able to carry a single stone. We start to stagger slowly towards the stairs, with the others staggering beneath our gear. Then Teanna has a good idea and gives us both a skipping blessing, enabling us to move at 12mph. We whip up the stairs, drop the first stones by the exit to the middle cavern, zoom back down the stairs, collect the other two stones, and race back to the cavern exit, where we can rest for a few minutes while the others join us. We might have heard voices at this point, or it might just have been nerves. Either way, we skip up the tunnels, now rolling two crystals at once each.

Girrim is waiting for us just past the defences. It's nice to see a wise, helpful, all-knowing, phlegmatic blackened dwarf turn pale. He seems unkeen on us continuing on into his kingdom rolling and bumping around four giant spheres of raw magic enhancement. Within minutes six terrified mages, complete with protective anti- kyanite cowled robes and gloves, surround us and start chanting. We sit down for a rest. An hour later, we and the crystals are teleported (I guess the hour-long ritual made it safe?) to a familiar tunnel. There is no sign of the King, or the mages, but the tunnel is the one that we first entered the dwarven complex from, a fortnight ago, from Chaaff's chambers. We roll the great golden balls (yes, they really weren't golden) up hill for a couple of minutes, and are met by Chaaff himself. He is not happy storing them, but less happy at the idea of us or the bad guys having them, so we roll them into a storage chamber. At this point, we realise that we lost track of time at some point. Instead of late afternoon, it is now after midnight, making it Berry Monkey. Either in the faerie mound, or during the teleport (slow portal?) ritual, we misplaced 8 hours.

Berry Monkey (27 Fruit) - please, sir, I want some more

After a quick debrief with Chaaff (sped up significantly by him already being aware of Icarone's dreams), we resolve to return to the mines immediately and see if we can find the last crystal, as this alone is still enough kyanite to destroy much of Alusia.

This really isn't a good idea.

I agree! - Broc

Icarone taking up scribe notes again. We head back to the mines to retrieve the last kyanite crystal. Unseen and stealthy! Well I sound like a bumblebee while flying to keep up with the others who are "skipping", so not really that stealthy, but it pays to start thinking stealthy even when not yet stealthy. I wonder what would happen if I grew banapples with kyanite?

As we are making our way down to the lowest cavern, Teeanna's Telepathy detects a few minds who are searching and grumpy, so we sneak towards them to see how we can brighten their day :) There is a lot of kyanite dust on the ground where we are staying hidden, and it looks like glowing carpet via Witchsight. It's quite sparkly.

There are 9 people in the cavern, 6 of who are scattered around it searching with torches for the crystals we have already taken! Three people in the middle seem to be coordinating things and there is equipment nearby for carrying a single crystal. Two of the three are almost 7 feet tall and don't seem to be saying much.

We wait to see what they will do, and after a little while the shorter of the three in charge seems to talk with the spirit of a two headed dwarf (wow that kyanite does cause some odd things, maybe I shouldn't grow banapples with it, but then again perhaps it would make it extra special). Thank goodness Broc is able to see spirits. From listening to the one sided conversation it seems the game is up and they know the other crystals have been taken.

There is shouting and the searchers (who have rank 20 power up spells on them) are called back, and then some sort of roiling black vapours start seeping out of the ground. It's a twisted kyanite version of Noxious Vapours so we scramble (as quietly as possible) up a couple of cavern levels and hide out of sight to see where they go.

As they come upwards their minds come back within Telepathy range and the first one seems alien (that's the way Teeanna describes it) and very shortly afterwards two thin limbed creatures (one must have resisted the Telepathy) race past our hiding place. Perhaps these are the "natives" we've been told about who are hunting fae! Teeanna doesn't want anything to do with them just at the moment. Oh that's right, me too. Just remembered I'm fae now also.

It takes awhile for the others to follow them and we eventually follow them upwards to see where they go. As we near the top of the caverns, another mind is detected that is focused on a ritual, and shortly afterwards telepathy minds start disappearing. We rush upwards however the focussed mind disappears just before we enter an empty chamber that has a back wall covered in blood!

Sam licks the blood (wow Orcs really are quite hardy aren't they) and it is the remains of a person, that must have been used to keep a portal open. Broc does some sort of rune protection that he assures us means we are safe in this area for the time being and then settles down to divinate the wall to see where they came from. He is almost finished when we notice what appears to be a dark cloud appearing near the ceiling. It has damage magic with no known counterspell so we drag Broc away just before what sounds like thunder occurs. I thought we would be safe here? It turns out to be something called "Raining Blood" and thankfully does not actually drip down the stairs towards us.

No longer able to divinate the portal we skip and bumblebee back towards the dwarves to get some much needed rest. We arrive back to find Chaaff in dragon form seemingly asleep on top of the four kyanite crystals.

Light Monkey (28 Fruit) - Where we let sleeping dragons lay, Sam has a thought, and we chase the Queen to rescue the king in waiting

We wake up after a luxurious sleep, purify and leave a message for Chaaff who is still sleeping on top of the four crystal globes. Seems like a very long ancient divination magic so we don't disturb him.

We walk and then portal to the capital, however as we exit there is a shout of "get them, they're under arrest" so we step backwards through the portal and get into defensive positions. Some spears fly through although no one is hurt. We throw a note through asking for explanation however no response comes through before the portal closes, so we portal to Vidal's in hopes of finding out from him what has happened.

Vidal tells us the king in waiting has been kidnapped and the palace is under martial law, likely still with the Queen in charge. My dream might be coming true! He also says the Life Shaman and the Termite Shaman (who lives to the south of Bandapyjamas in the middle of a swamp) are the best to locate the boy. He also offers to talk with his associate in the palace and then transport us directly to the palace if needed. We talk with "Gaes" who will investigate for us and talk again in an hour.

Vidal invites his brother Ijel to help us, and he says a few hours ago the Queen headed south and then took off his protections. The Termite Shaman has told him that he sent her to the west on the back of a winged termite. He also says the king in waiting has removed his protections.

We portal near Kota and start to fly back towards where we think the Queen will be. After roughly 2 hours of flying, Broc is briefly vanished by Ijel who says the Queen actually flew north from the Termite Shaman, so we quickly portal near the Tree Shaman hoping that will be closer to her location.

We spot a figure in the distance so we give chase, although gradually fall behind. I really must rank my wings! Broc uses his long seeing glasses to make out a female with Shadow wings. We give chase for the next several hours and finally loose sight of her in the gloom. I take some bearings using the night sky and determine she is unerring in her direction, and finally spy some campfires slightly west of the water nymphs location, which is roughly where we lost sight of her.

We prepare ourselves with protection magics and fly to the campfires with dark wings (mine would have been too bright). Teeanna's Telepathy picks up the king in waitings guard! And she senses malevolent mana in the area which is swirling towards a blue glowing building on the top of the hill. The camp is really large with many fires as well as a line of central enclosures full of people as well as many undead who are shambling around, moving earth up the hill towards the blue glowing building.

Sam summons a 20 ft shiny black obsidian earth elemental and establishes rapport with it, although despite Sam's control it wants to tunnel to the blue glowing tunnel. He persuades it to tunnel under where we think the king in waiting is being kept, however when he dispels it, instead of being banished, it heads off towards the blue glowing building. Sam realises this will cause a problem, so immediate tunnels up through the floor.

Light Monkey II (28 Fruit) – Too Light, Too Much Monkey

A neutral scribe picks up the tale.

The Orc continues to demonstrate his incompetence by requiring two tunnels at different angles to break through to the surface. Three figures fall through the hole, and roll down the slope towards the cluttered party. In the front is a shape-shifting native, who blocks the party’s way in an angular skinny form with long sinuous black arms ending in deadly black claws. Behind it is a second native, this one an imposing hulk, with a considerable proportion of its mass transferred to its dominant right arm. Finally, at the very top of the tunnel is the small, bound-and-gagged, and (oddly!) encrowned boy King. We engage.

Father Broc engages with the first native in a brutal exchange of martial skill and power. In the melee, Broc takes at least four blows that would be fatal, or at least grievous, to any mere mortal, but shrugs most of them off. His flurry of stabs and thrusts with his holy lance initially seem to be equally ignored, but they, combined with multiple phantasms sent by the Princess Teanna, wear down the native. Brave Icarone presses forward beside Broc, and piercing deep into its side as he manoeuvres past to engage the second native. Sam, for reasons unknown, fills the upper tunnel with a swarm of white-hot Salamanders, an effect which momentarily blinds Broc, and causes the King to start smouldering, but doesn’t faze the attackers.

As Broc stalwartly strives to break down the defences of the first native, ably supported by Her Highness, Icarone and another of Teanna’s phantasms engage the second hulking brute. Icarone ducks past a glancing blow, and skips behind him to start dragging the King out of Sam’s fire. At this point, Sam decides that what the claustrophobic fire-filled tunnel needs is a fifteen foot wide, heavily hirsute, baboon bottom placed over the only exit to the surface.

Broc and Teanna take down the first figure, and Broc advances to aid Icarone, who can’t fight the second figure and protect the King from the rapidly rising flames at the same time. The flames spread across the hairy ceiling like it was dipped in lamp oil, and badly burns Icarone as he throws himself onto the King and rolls them both through the Salamanders, past the surviving native, and into a less crowded section of the floor. Meanwhile, in the comic interlude Sam has realised that his lower tunnel will close up momentarily, and that he’s blocked the only other exit, so he casts a Honeycomb of Bees to provide an alternative exit into the Elemental tunnel. This had the precise effect that you would expect.

Icarone slides down the tunnel to Teanna, who prepares a Healing spell just in time to save the badly burnt King. Sam wanders over too, and kisses the Princess before informing the party they have five seconds to get out before the lower tunnelling closes. Teanna and Icarone quickly but carefully lower themselves and their patient into the main underground tunnel. Sam saunters after them. Broc immediately dispatches the last enemy, and then throws himself down the tunnel, around the corner, and dives headfirst clear of the tunnel mouth 4.9 seconds later. A slow seven count ensues while the party stand up and dusts themselves off, and only then the does tunnel close up. Meanwhile Sam desperately tries to remember which counterspell to use to stop several million confused and trapped bees from pouring out of their honeycomb and into the elementally-bored tunnel. He finally succeeds, and the party starts to head out.

Suddenly, there is a shockwave of mana, and then a loud rumbling sound from the top of the hill. Broc instantly sums the situation up, and cuts a hole in reality to evacuate the party. However, instead of connecting to the Nymph Spring, it opens a rift to the building at the top of the hill. There are three figures visible through the slash in reality. The foremost has huge muscles and his skin floats like shards of rock floating on magma - except that they float on a human-shaped sea of boiling blood, with muscles and bones momentarily protruding from the surging mass all over its form. Behind it are two mages, obviously intent on controlling a large and complex magic that is starting to take effect. Broc locks eyes with them.

The rumbling grows louder, the ground vibrates, and the sound of hundred of innocents screaming and dying can be heard. Sam promptly faints, immensely increasing his utility to the party. It seems that the prisoners are being crushed overhead. Broc attempts to Turn the evil mages with his Gabrielite symbol; but no Demon or angel can directly contact their agents on the Isle, and so instead Broc chooses to submit his will to Gabriel’s teacher Ijel. Instantly, he becomes imbued with a copper hue, and he disrupts the mages’ mana manipulation. They frantically try to close the rift. Broc chooses to hold the rift open while mystically crushing the will of the foul blood mages. He recognises one of them as Faustinius, Uncle to the King. Teanna controls Sam and gets him to his feet, so the rest of the party can take the King to safety. Broc decides that while he could step through to crush the enemy, doing so alone would be foolhardy, and as the rest of the party is in no state for a climactic battle, he briskly slams the portal closed, and escorts the party to the surface.

Once at ground level, the party can see that a giant stone roller lies at the bottom of the hill, and a many-yard-wide swathe of crushed, dead and dying bodies leads to it, through the prisoner pens, from the building at the top of the hill. The stone roller is brown, with a coating of obsidian, marking the Red Carpet Massacre as yet another heinous crime to lay at the feet of the Orc, who flies around the camp to take a first-hand look at the fallout of his epic misjudgements. He returns to announce there is no sign of the Queen. Meanwhile, Faustinius and his companions have run off on foot.

The party pauses for a minute to heal and power up.

Light Monkey III (28 Fruit) – Lighter and Monkeyer

We power up and continue the chase of the demonic thing and the two mages as they flee into the forest. The demonic figure has crashed and burnt a path through the verdant jungle. Teeanna complements Sam on being the most princely of all the men gathered. I deduce she can say this because the actual prince is currently a duck.

Broc is surrounded by blazing light which is incredibly painful to the eyes. I quickly protect the rest of us with resistance to light and we can see again.

Broc and Sam pick up Teeanna and I and fly after them through the tunnel. We quickly catch them and land gracefully just behind them (well with a tiny bit of crashing into trees) and leap forward to engage.

Teeanna's phantasm starts its messy business on one of the mages, while Broc leaps into close with the lava monster. I step up beside the phantasm and the mage collapses to the ground, begging for mercy. Faustinius screams, falls to the ground dead and turns into ash from Broc's blinding light.

Shortly afterwards the other mage expires in the caring embrace of the phantasm.

Broc smites the lava monster a number of times and then I flail at it a couple of times, landing a very lucky hit upon which it explodes flinging lava and rock at us for some serious damage while slagging the ground nearby. The Mage who we thought was dead screams "no" and his body shakes on the ground. Upon investigation he only has one hand as well as matching scars on each cheek.

We return to the clearing to find the natives and any able bodied people have fled. We get about the business of trying to save as many of the crushed bodies as we can.

Broc communes with Ijel and shortly after Chaff and Ijel arrive in their gigantic dragon forms. I have never seen them this large before. Chaff asks Sam what he would endure to save all the people, Sam steps up towards him, Chass encloses Sam with his taloned claw, and Sam is surrounded by a glowing blue cage and starts screaming. Chaff glows bright blue and becomes transparent, followed by a flash of light across the battlefield, and the bodies are healed. Some bodies are changed somehow. The kyanite/obsidian boulder crumbles into dust.

Chaff slumps to the ground and shrinks to his elvan form. The copper ground scoops him up in a massive claw and flies away.

We all retreat away from the people so Sam can un-duck the prince and a crypt emerges from the ground! We grab the prince, leap outside and nothing happens, whereupon he turns invisible and starts to lift into the sky. His mother (well we assume it's the Queen) flies down, grabs him and flys off, we assume towards home. If only she had waited around, they could have come back via portal with us.

We portal to Vidal who advises us we should assist the survivors to get home on the barges. He gives us a chest of local currency to aid the survivors in getting home.

Back at the clearing the survivors have made good progress on organising themselves for leaving on the barges.

Broc, Sam, and I spend two weeks clearing 3,600 untuned kyanite shards that were buried across the clearing, while Teeanna ranks her making tea and lunch skill. While we are focused on our task, the dead bodies slowly do what rotting bodies do.

Death Termite (12 Harvest) - Where we are royally pardoned, dragons say thanks, and we seek the master artificer

Vidal tells us we are royally pardoned (although we didn't do anything! You just can't win) and also advises us he and his brothers are grateful for our assistance and we can each have a question.

Mortimer arrives while we are talking with Vidal. He seems nice enough and he has a fae frog in his pocket which has really large wings. I'm looking forward to my wings growing that long one day.

We decide to journey to see the artificer "Bodinius" who is north of us somewhere, so Broc takes us through the portal that was to the north, and then I cast wings and we fly for 10 hours or so, before finally coming across a savannah area (this is very odd for the island) which we think may be the recovering salt curse area.

Ant Termite (13 Harvest) - Where we see a town of iron, take a train ride, and exchange gifts with a master artificer

We have a very pleasant sleep overnight and after purifying and a solid breakfast we continue in the general direction of a large heat source that Sam can detect.

After a little while, we see four large brick towers in the distance with two roads leading away from it, one of them looks funny (the others say this called a "railroad").

As we get closer to the town I feel quite strange, I guess it's because of all those people in there and they have no trees anywhere I can see! There also seems to be a fair bit of iron in the air, so I'll need to be careful as that burns me now.

The master artificer is not here however his assistant Carston is, who recognises Broc and Mortimer. After some confusion over why we are here (we end up in the pub for awhile) we find out there is some sort of engine heading to the capital soon, where the Bodinius is. I'm a little worried about this as it sounds like it may have a lot of iron!

I was right, the whole thing is iron and I cannot go anywhere near it, so Broc and I fly while Sam and Mortimer enthusiastically travel on the "train" to Acombria. I am surprised that the people here are seemingly not worried by magic.

We arrive at the city and meet the artificer Bodenius Sornatius Voturia (who is also the prince of this part of the island) who takes down our requirements in exchange for the kyanite shards, although we will keep a shard each. He needs the shards to line the bottom of his boat so they will create bubbles that will make the boat travel faster. He directs us to find rooms somewhere and gets straight back to his work. He seems very focussed.

We have a late lunch idling the afternoon away, with Bodenius occasionally popping in with things he has made for us. He seems to have interpreted our requirements in odd ways, however everybody else seems generally happy with his creations. Sam has a hat that produces cooked chickens, and a small knife that stops death buzz. Broc has a quiver to put his spear and lance into and they disappear! Mortimer gets a small knife that only cuts metal. Podinius promises he is almost finished with Teeanna and my gifts.

Tree Termite (14 Harvest) - Where we receive more gifts, tell Vidal more stories, and work to get Sam more ready for a fight

We have a pleasant nights sleep and awake to find more items from Bodenius. Teeanna gets an obsidian block that heats things really quickly. He has made me dragony skin armour with space for my wings!

We thank Podinius for his work, I plant some banapples outside the city, as well as Broc creates a portal location for us to come back to. Mortimer blesses crops here which will be wonderful for the banapples and all other plants in the area!

We portal to Vidal to make sure he knows what is going on, he always likes our news! And then spend much time preparing Sam for his personal contest with the Orc leader.

Water Termite (15 Harvest) - Where we get a little lost, Sam quells the orc threat, and we say goodbye to the Isles

We ask around our group for directions and Sam pipes up but is ignored, we then portal to the Plateau of Decay and then fly to Borta only to find its just overgrown ruins of the Town the Orc's looted. We then portal to the NW to the plateau where the Tree Shaman lurks and then fly back to our starting point of the Bone Yard to ask directions of Vidal. Broc claims this is helping to get Sam angry which is needed for his upcoming combat - and it is working as his attitude has changed from one of peaceful serenity to one of bubbling anger!
Vidal advises us the Orc town is actually quite close by, so we fly south west for a short while and spy a fortified town near the headwaters of the Umshatar river.

Broc lands outside requesting parley, and we follow after a group of orc's come outside without charging him.
After a bit of arguing, Sam and the Orc chieftain fight it out for control of the tribe. Well I say, fight it out, the chief hurls himself at Sam landing a single punch, then Sam smooshes his head like a melon (those smites come in very handy in a brawl) leaving a lasting impression on Broc's ermine cloak. Sam's illusion then vanishes and everybody sees him for the real High-Goblin he now is.
He leads us all into the town of roughly 2000 (give or take those birthing their latest litters) Orc's and takes control, displaying feats of strength and selecting his second in command "Urg" through tests of combat and "Mortimer questions".
Sam threatens surprise inspections, tells them they are now part of the human community on the island, and the dragons are in charge of everything. We fly off, leaving the new second in command looking quite dejected.

Vidal congratulates Sam on quelling the Orc threat and offers him his promised questions in reward.

With that we seem to have helped the Isles as best we can and are free to return home.

Appendix

A - Individuals we Met or Heard about

Shamans

The 23 shamans are also the names of the 23 days of each month. They are listed below in calendar order:

  1. Life - woman near Lake ???. Her dress shows big life and death events on the isle
  2. Death - Lord A from the Plain of Decay
  3. Ant
  4. Tree - An Ent from the ?? Ridge.
  5. Water
  6. Monkey
  7. Millipede
  8. Woodpecker
  9. Vine
  10. Berry
  11. Light
  12. Dark
  13. Sloth
  14. Air - possibly lives on ?? Mountain. Dislikes Roche.
  15. Frog
  16. Cockroach
  17. Hummingbird
  18. Fire
  19. Herb - also known as the River man.
  20. Termite
  21. Parrot
  22. Elephant
  23. Bat - A Vampire who lives behind a waterfall between Lakes ??? and ???

B - Locations we Went

Madeiras Elevadas

C - Loot we acquired or expenses we incurred

  • Rock of Integration - Sam - Gift
  • Dryad Tree Seed - Teeanna - Gift (Planted)
  • Dryad Ability - Teeanna - Gift
  • Investeds - Party - 5400sp
  • Lamp of tranportation
  • Ring of XXX
  • Ring of XXX

Calendar

Autumn 813 WK: Fruit
Moonday Duesday W'ansday Th'rsday Frysday Reapsday Sunday
1 Guild Meeting 2 3 4 5 6
Moon2.jpg 7 8 We are hired and also need to save the world! 9 Told our future by a fae wisewoman 10 Boring day while Teeanna reads rune stories 11 Another boring day, travel back to Seagate 12 Plant dryad tree seed, investigate the temple of the Drow god 13 Father Broc joins us, make our way to Setagen in Insel Der Freiheit

Frog Week, 36 Green Tempest (9 Fruit 813 - 22 Fruit 813).

Idf 15 Frog.png Idf 16 Cockroach.png Idf 17 Humming.png Idf 18 Fire.png Idf 19 Herb.png Father Broc joins us, make our way to Setagen in Insel Der Freiheit Idf 20 Termite.png Trade with Vidal, dinner with dragons Idf 21 Parrot.png Meet Life Shaman, crash into the sea
Forge Thoughts Waxing
Idf 22 Elephant.png Teeanna is kidnapped and rescued Idf 23 Bat.png Big trouble in little Kota, the Day of Knowledge Idf 01 Life.png Icarone is reborn as a Pixie, Day of Rebirth Idf 02 Death.png Plant a seed nut in lava, tell a binder our activities Idf 03 Ant.png Get confused by local calendar Idf 04 Tree.png Sail from Obsidian Rock to Pasir Idf 05 Water.png Get lost portalling
Full Moon Full Moon


Monkey Week, 36 Green Tempest (23 Fruit 813 - 6 Harvest 813).

Idf 06 Monkey.png Set sail from Setagen to Banderjamaren Idf 07 Millipede.png more sailing Idf 08 Woodpecker.png arrive at Banderjamaren Idf 09 Vine.png Oraculous prophecy. Collect 4 Golden Balls Idf 10 Berry.png Look for last Kyanite ball. Idf 11 Light.png Fly 15 hours. Rescue King + Innocents. Kill Villain. Idf 12 Dark.png Load barges. Dig out Kyanite Crystals.
Thoughts Waning
Idf 13 Sloth.png ...dig... Idf 14 Air.png ...dig... Idf 15 Frog.png ...dig... Idf 16 Cockroach.png ...dig... Idf 17 Humming.png...dig... Idf 18 Fire.png rest day. Phew! Idf 19 Herb.png...dig...
Bounty New Moon


Termite Week, Halishande's Bounty in 36 Green Tempest (7 Harvest 813 - 20 Harvest 813)

Idf 20 Termite.png ...dig... Idf 21 Parrot.png ...dig... Idf 22 Elephant.png ...dig... Idf 23 Bat.png ...dig... Idf 01 Life.png Finish digging Idf 02 Death.png Royally pardoned, dragons say thanks, seek master artificer Idf 03 Ant.png Town of iron and a train ride to the artificer
Bounty Waxing
Idf 04 Tree.png Receive artificer gifts, get Sam ready-ish for a fight Idf 05 Water.png Get a little lost, Sam quells orc threat, say goodbye to the Isles Idf 06 Monkey.png Idf 07 Millipede.png Idf 08 Woodpecker.png Idf 09 Vine.png Idf 10 Berry.png
Autumn Equinox Full Moon Full Moon

Also see the Calendar_for_Insel_der_Freiheit