Safely Underfoot

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Scribe Notes
This adventure will be happening between Newhaven and Novadom.

Summary

Adventure: Safely Underfoot
GM: Greg Graydon
Session: Winter 807 wk
Night: Thursday
Level: High+
Location: Craig's Place

Party
  1. Magnus Giant Namer Mage
  2. Mebh Warrior and Air Mage
  3. Amber Wiccan Blast Mage
  4. Pierre Warrior and Water Mage
  5. Lath Air Blast Mage (Mil Sci)
  6. Toledo Steele Warrior (Party leader)
  7. Jade None-mage


Employer
Duke Leto of Carzala.
Mission
To secure a coastal land route for a new road between Newhaven and Novadom. This means walking from Newhaven to Novadom and clearing the area of 'real hazards'.
Path the party will take
Pay
unknown.

setting out

Day 1

I am happy report to you dear reader that this season a group of hardy and honest adventurers will be working for the good Merchants of Seagate and his most gracious personage Leto the Wise. Phew I have been practising this polite stuff now for a whole two months and gosh it really is quite hard.

Anyway I am not really sure why but Duke Leto (the wise and noble) has decided that he needs us to travel into an infested swamp. I suggest that we should immediately throw ourselves on his mercy and apologise for whatever we have done to piss him .... I mean offend his Duke grace thingy. The talkers amoungst us don't pay any attention to me tho.

Toledo assures us there will be much oportunity for Heroics in the swamp. Our pulses quicken at the thought of a fight and we are all ready to cleave any unholy horrors the swamp may throw our way. Amber testifies that she has been into Sith's Revenge before and undead armies fight ancient wars within it's forgotten boarders, luck is obviously with us today. The merchants promise us 100sp per day each and there is a bounty on pirates ears this season. Newhaven is providing us with provisions for our journey and we are to report to the Majordomo there for our supplies.

We appoint Toledo as leader as he is the obvious choice. Lath as our Tactian and Pierre as scribe, although I Mebh have the pen presently.


There is no time like the present to get going (and we are told there is excellent beer in Newhaven.) So we cloud toward Newhaven, as we get close Dunlan strongly suggests we land and travel by foot as flying is not permitted in the area. As night falls Amber trades a blessing on crops for a nights lodgings and food.

Day 2

The country side is pleasant well maintained farms and the peoples seem eerily happy. The sun has barely moved in the sky before we notice that most of us have large red crosses on our chests and Dunlan is keeping his distance from us. Being a little alarmed at the crosses and having them D.A.'d as a targeting mechanism we decide to question a local offical about them. We are told to keep to the roads and we should be fine.

We arrive in Newhaven it is a bustling town. It is unnaturally peaceful and ordered here. There are no Rats, no beggars, no fighting neighbours, and no pickpockets. We hurry to the castle to see the Magordomo as instructed. He seems like a nice man if somewhat harried, he arranges provisions for us. We plan to go stay at an Inn in town where there is a semblance of normality however the Majordomo tells us if we get involved in anything so minor as a brawl the castle defence system might strike us down. We decide to stay at the castle instead.

Day 3

Landfall map

We ride to Landfall and collect our supplies. This town is a bit more like it. Everyone is behaving like they live in a frontier town again, people get drunk in taverns, people get into fights, there is a certain kind of woman in the publican bar. We relax and feel more at home.

Day 4

More riding we stop over at the last guard post of South Summit before we hit the Barrens of Sith

Into the Hills

The hills between the protectorate of Newhaven and the Barrens of Sith are mostly roughlands, it is decided that it will be easiest to travel across a gulley. We encounter a band of goblins, they must have been desparate indeed to attack us.

Into the Barrens

The roughlands end in a large cliff extending both north and South as far as the eye can see. After a quick scout of the area we discover a cleavage in the rock where the Autumn Rains have cut into the rock over thousands of years. There is a small pool of brakish water at the base of the ravine. Pierre creates a fresh water spring here and we continue onward out into the Salt pans.

There isn't much living out here plants seem to have a hard time growning in the salt, However we do come across an ancient ship buried in the sand. On investigation it still has most of it's cargo, a fine peach brandy, Lath and Pierre find a journal of plants left by Swithan the journal is a more recent addition, only 200 - 300 years old. The ship was occupied for awhile about 20 years ago.

Travel is realitively easy going and we make good time crossing getting to an old outpost in one day. We resolve to stay at the Outpost to see if any wondering spirits give us trouble. Pierre creates another Spring here.

Sith's Revenge (Day 6)

There are old roads leading across roughlands from Sith's Barrens and down into Sith's Revenge, making it a fast journey. Still being fresh after our mornings journey, we resolve to scout the swamp from the air. Surveying the maps, a trail is marked zigzagging over the high mana area. After a quick snack, Toledo leads us out. On entering the High Mana Zone our magic items begin to glow and spark noticeably this is highly unnerving, below us we can see the remains of Panjari a once proud Elven trading port now sunken in the swamp. This continues on for 10 miles (a loop down and half way back)after which suddenly we stop glowing and then we are forced to land as our magic items slowly stop working and the flying cuts out. It is a hard landing luckily feather falling was cutting in intermittently. We have drifted two miles into the No Mana Effect.

None of our magics are working here and we are stuck in a deep swamp. While we are here we breifly investigate a patch of dry firm ground, and discover it is a sunken building, noone is keen to go in. Amber sends great wing out to scout the area and he reports back that the fastest way out is NNW. After hours slogging through the swamp we arrive at a clearing with strange statuesque shapes and that strange glow about our magic items returns.

The mana here is extremely high and hard to controll.

The strange shapes turn out to be some kind of Iron Golem and we accidentally <grin> activate one. It gets hellfired into next week, Amber seems to have to extert her will to maintain control of the magic. The Golems are powered by golden hearts, we collect them.

The decision to return to Landfall for the night and a bath is unanimous, we can deal with any undead that maybe in the area tomorrow night when we are fresh.

Sith's Revenge (7th Day)

It is decided to spend the night in the swamp tonight. The day is to be spent creating a suitable defensible position should there still be any armies of undead in the area. Mebh perform a ritual of speak with the winds. The Winds in this area are surprisingly intelligent and erudite. They tell us that there are Saurime living off to the North Eastern side of the swamp they have been there about 2 years. There is a poisonous wind that kills everything it comes in contact with in the swamp. Drow have been seen in the high mana zone, the came from the South East. There are skeletal undead just to the north of the High mana area. There are iron, and clay golems in the high mana area, there are all types on undead in the swamp. There are some living things as yet unidentified.

Based on this new information our plan changes. Tonight we will defend an out cropping and scout the swamp rather than camping within it's boundaries.

Night falls and all is calm until about 3AM when Amber spys some movement in the swamp. We all armour up, Toledo and Amber fly off to investigate. They come back with 6 wights on their tail. A fight ensues, the wights use a celestial maze spell to send Toledo to some other plane probably the astral. They have a wall of Darkness that is unresistable and fears you. After the fight we free Toledo, the spell is tricky in that it looks like white fire and leaves a small pile of illusionary ash.

Half an hour later 60 skeletons turn up and head towards our fire. We decide to see what will happen and let two of them get to the fire. The odd thing was that just as they got to the fire we could see under the light given by the fire, that the skeletons looked odd, a little like some form of construct rather that Undead. The explode causing specific grievous blows to anyone standing close and Endurance damage to those of us standing no too close. We are unsure if this is a cause of the fire or if the fire is just a point at which they where told to explode.

Just as the Sun is about to rise another 200 odd skeletons arrive at the cliff below our position but sink into the swampy depths when the sun comes up.

The Guild (8th to 15th)

We are injured after our encountered with the Skeletons and decide to fly to the guild healers for repairs. It takes a week to repair Lath so during this time we do some research in town. I go to talk to the librarian but I am really crappy at research so I fetch pierre. Eventually Amber comes and asks the important questions.

From the guild we find out

  • Sith has not been seen for 8 years since the bending of the world
  • Sith was last seen fighting some Drow
  • Sith is not necessarily hostile to Guild Members
  • There are rumours of Elven families still fighting in Sith's Revenge
  • The Golems in the swamp where made about 8 years ago around the time of the bending of the world or maybe just after this time.
  • The skeletons from the swamp are some kind of shaper magical trap
  • The celestial spell cast on Toledo is called Maze

500sp is spent to getting the mechanicians to build some arm bracers.
Toledo makes all those that can use them some grenados.
I buy some more barbed arrows.
We leave Dunlin, or Jorndice at the guild and pick up Jade and Magnus to help the party.

Encounters with the Saurime (16th)

Once everyone is healthy again we head back to the swamp. Our first cause of action will be to talk to the Saurime. This being identified as our easiest task and possibly informative. We fly over the swamp and land not far from their camp, soon their scouts are spotted hiding behind a bush. They speak common, after a brief discussion they agree to take us to their shaman. Amber tells them that she has cleared Novadom and their original swamp of undead. They are happy to be relocated to their original homes and have only been living here to avoid the dark circle. The shaman marks on our map the safe places to travel within the swamp. We spend the next 2 and a half days relocating them to their original village. It is good that they are happy to go as we wish to build a road through their village.

We spend a night in Novadom where Amber politely lets the guards know that she will be displeased if the Saurime are harried or attacked by the peoples of Novadom.

Pyramids (19th)

Pyramids

On the return to the swamp we spend a day at what turns out to be a pyramid which is in the high mana/no mana area of the swamp. We preform a range of tests and on the pyramid. The top of them which is sticking out of the swamp is 100 feet by 100 feet. The top has 50 2 foot tiles which seem to be warded in some way. We remove 25 resetting 'white fire' wards with out trusted 'stamp to clear' technique. Fortunately none of us die. At the center of the top of the open area on the top of the pyramid is a smaller 4 foot high model of the pyramid which is divided into 3 sections that can be moved independent of each other. Moving them seems to change the mana level in a high area of about 3 miles around the pyramid. The levels seem to be (but their could be more): No mana (shaped items stop over time), no mana (shaped items continue), low mana, normal mana, high mana, extreme mana (which casting often lets loose an additional spell at random), all of which levels have problems for the part.

Three dead Drow

Also on the top of the pyramid are three corpses of three dead Drow. We spend some time talking to the dead on them. Wicca are great. Once we finish hurting out selves we walk out of the area, and once able fly an indirect route back to the Saurime camp. We camp the night.

Day of Clues (20th)

In the morning we head back into the swamp and spend a couple of hours checking to see if the effect of no mana at the pyramid we left yesterday has affected any of the other areas. We send some time looking for the location of the other pyramids in the centre of the other high mana areas, thinking their could be more.

We find one pyramid with a side smashed in from a tress, and enter. It is filled with swamp water and send a good hour working our way inside. Once in we swim in and search the inside which has finely worked but very old tunnels. We get to an odd door room. The door room is trapped and much newer than the pyramid. We find by entering it we can then enter into a inner chamber which has air in it. Inside the chamber are two coffins, a pitch black celling, a large rug almost covering all of the floor, and an additional exit door like the one used to enter the chamber. The rug is trapped and the celling is black and a bit frightening. Inside one coffin is black stuff which we recover. The coffin has a fails bottom which goes down thru the floor. The other coffing has a Elf corpse in it.

Sith

The corpse belongs to a family member of the Sith family. The corpse has magical blood to stop it being resurrected. We find out some other stuff but I forget what that is [please fill this in]. All in all a good days work.

We continue down into the pyramid and discover all sorts of traps (poor footless Pierre). After some time we discover a key in the form of a puzzle and we manage to open it, letting us into a central chamber below the one upstairs. In side the chamber is a smaller copy of the pyramid with some form of Dragon script or scratchings on the four sides. The pyramid is highly highly magical.

We work out that the letters on the side when you attempt to translate or decode them the pyramid draws the person in close and they end up placing a hand on the extremely magical pyramid. Once started you are not able to remove the hand. Pierre says they he will attempt it as he is missing his lower legs at the moment, and useless in a fight. We kind of expect a fight if Pierre gets it wrong (last time large elemental monsters attacked us from below).

Pierre manages to translate the script and inside his head a strong deep voice asks him what do you want?
Pierre replies with 'Raise the swamp to its former glory'.
The pyramid shakes and glows for some time. Streams of chaotic mana pour out from the top and leave upward out of the room.

Some time later (at the end of the 20th) we make it back out of the pyramid.

Renewed Swamp

Renewed Swamp

The old undead infested smelly swamp has changed. It has been completely renewed, and teaming with wild life of all types. The water is fresh and clean, with lots of fresh water springs. The swamp floor seems to have risen around 15 feet, as their is a large drop-off along what used to be the shore line. At the western end of the swamp a newly formed river of fresh clean water exits the swamp out to sea.

Some of the creatures we find are:

  • Large amounts of healthy trees and plants of new types.
  • Herds of dozens of 80 foot long giant plant eating creatures.
  • Herds of giant water buffalo.
  • Frogs and smaller animals can be seen and heard.
  • A dozen truly giant silver and gold covered eagles with 30 foot wing span, that can use air mages.
  • All the undead seem to have been removed.
  • All the mosquitoes are gone.
Renewed Swamp

Novadom Nights

Late in the day on the 20th we fly back to Novadom and have dinner. Amber does her town thing, and feels refreshed (if thats what you call him). We talk to the local lords.