Worship the Desert

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Summary

Adventure: Worship the Desert On Plane/Off Plane
GM: Bernard
Session: Winter 819
Night: Thursdays
Location: Birdlands, Massey.
Level: Crunchy, maybe good with ketchup (and salt)

Party:

Employer:
Ranjit Kayal, a Trader from Izmiraldi.

Mission:
A messenger bird has arrived at the guild with a missive. Ranjit is seeking to hire a guild party to investigate an area of desert in the Gatar Depression, one of his rivals was attacked there by someone unknown, and he wishes to know who this is, probably have them dealt to permanently, and also find the lost temple the rival was searching for.
Along with the missive was a down payment of gems, valued by the guild at 30,000sp worth after taxes, and a finger belonging to an unknown attacker. This finger has been identified as being off plane from the plane of Athas, so there is a strong possibility that part of the adventure may require off plane travel. The Messenger bird is still waiting at the guild to carry a message back to Ranjit to let him know if there is a party and if they would like to meet in Izmiraldi, or in another location.


Pay:
30,000sp down payment (total, after taxes)
15,000sp more each (total after taxes)
A value of exotic goods. 30 Arcane Points

Diary

Scribe will receive an EP bonus if the notes are up to date more than 24h before the next session, and the in game dates are correct.

Initial Brief

TBC

Chapter One

The First Two days, as noted by Jaycey

On Guild meeting day there were only 3 of us in the guild meeting room. Smallest adventure party I’ve ever been apart of. We are informed that the remaining members of the group would be with us in a couple days as they had some loose ends to attend to. We decided to leave assigning rolls to when they joined us.

We are partially briefed by a 7ft Eagle that spoke common. According to the bird it was natural, of course because Mages are natural. And we are fully briefed by guild security We were to find who killed Ranjit Kayal’s rival, along with find a temple that the rival was looking for. Potentially going off plane because of the POO on a finger.

Deciding to take our time to prepare we put in our order for rations for the adventure and while waiting for this to be fulfilled we did as any good adventure part would do and set up to go out. Getting our appropriate greaters, knowing that lesser would be covered by Basalic and picking up specific desert gear. This search lead us to a couple of merchants’, only one of which I trusted to be honest enough in what he sold and being the party’s current merchant, we went with him.

The merchant sold 6 pairs of sand goggles along with some other neat items like a staff that he said cast lightning that ended in a thunderclap, and some snakeskin leather armor. The Merchant took particular interest in Rayne’s Hawk, Murder, which lead to a haggle session of what Rayne was willing to give up of murder and what he would give us for that item she decided to give up.

Being helped by myself and Raynes knowledge of beasts and merchants we settled on, Murders skin for the staff and two sets of bird sand goggles, this was the alternative to giving up Murder and potentially getting a lot more. So Sau Rus got to indulge in some live taxidermy and we got a decent trades. Oh and of course we regrew the birds skin with the help of the healers.

I am obliged to say that we did put the bird to sleep, before skinning him alive. As to be ethical and nice to the bird. It made Rayne feel better knowing that he wasn’t going to feel anything and that Murder got something out of it.

With all this having happened we were ready to leave tomorrow on the morning of the 3rd.

Chapter Two

Getting the party together we decided important things like, Party Leader, which was given to Rayne. Mil Sci and Scribe which were both given to me, Jaycey. After which we headed out on the cloud making sure members had Greater’s and things that they wanted before leaving. Spending the time on the cloud getting tattoos from Grizelda and ranking some stuff we reached Izmiraldi on the evening of the 9th.

Letting the guards know who we were looking for they gave us directions up to his manor in the upper-class district. When we got there the guard spoke to us in a language no one understood and then in common. Informing him why we were there he sent us down to the docks looking for the Harbour Master.

Eventually being sent in the direction of the Not so Lighthouse (Just a lighthouse without its light on) we knocked on the door. We were greeted by a man in good clothes that we could tell had some basic armor underneath. He showed us into a room with another man in some richer clothing and a man in silvered lamellar, this person was our employer. Who sent us back to his manor with a letter for both the Gate guard and his Butler. Back at the manor we were let in and feed, and about an hour later Ranjit meet us in his dinning room. In which he answers every question we have. Learning these things

 The rival was Yusuf, who was a business rival.
 Ranjit was following Yusuf’s trail to a temple when he and his men found the camp of twisted deceased bodies and the withered bodies
 Ranjit wants us to find what killed Yusuf and his men so it doesn’t kill him

The info on the temple we learned was:

 A Desert shaman named Amir Ali Pasda who worked with raiders 
 Amir was renowned for finding water no matter where he was and no matter whether other people could find water or not
 There is suspicion that Amir was pacted to a water entity
 Amir was looking for this temple and there are stories of what it could be no one knows for sure.

Learning all of this we did some planning, requesting things within reason from Ranjit working out what we were doing and then retired for the night.

The next day we got the last of the Greater’s for the party done by Ranjit’s Enchanter. These Greater’s only work in the Five Sisters, however if we leave plane from the Five Sisters they should still work cause the magic still counts as in the Five Sisters. Along with this we got the translation of Ranjit’s stuff that told him where/lead him to the temple. Our Navigator, who was Rayne worked out that we could cut 4-5 days of walking out of the trip and make it 1 day by cloud. The 5th day dependent on how lucky we were feeling about not getting lost. We decided no getting lost was a good plan and chose to just ride an extra day.

Wanting some more information on what killed Yusuf’s group Sau Rus cast Converse with Dead, which ended up o as Converse with DEATH. From death we learnt the entire of Yusuf’s party was dead by Yusuf didn’t go to Death when he died. Knowing that our trader Tachus was potentially still a week out we chose to stay in Izmiraldi and wait for him to turn up.

Chapter Three

The following day we had Lunch with Ranjit in a small date garden with a small artificial oasis to discuss what our payment for this was going to be. We settled very nicely between 30 and 40 thousand each in exotic goods and some currency. During this we also DAed Ranjit who came back as a Long-Lived Sentient and Human so we asked and he happily told us the story of how he came to drink from and Elixir of Life.

On the evening of the 13th Tachus arrived in Harbour and we went and saw him in the morning. We collected our extra goggle for the birds from him, had a look round what he still had or had acquired then said our dues and left. We prepared and did what we needed to, looking up names of things and the like, then left at about Lunch time.

We made the first Oasis stop in about 3-4 hours, were we prepare to set up for the night. Grizelda decides to summon a snake spirit having decided that they would know more than her bear. Apparently, this meant she summoned Berty. A snake with power known to Sau Rus. We talked to Berty for a bit finding out what he knew about the Gatar Depression. Apparently Berty like tasty treats.

“I’d hang round too if you gave me tasty treats” - Jaycey
“You’re a halfling, of course you would” - Basalic

Berty left in a right hurry after Grizelda asked if he knew who the Chief Castellon Of Hounds was. So I took that as a yes and understood that he was scary according to Berty, which made me personally a little more nervous.

On the morning of the 15th I spent morning ritual time getting the horses out and Grizelda had to try twice to get her Ifrit to summon, forgetting the first time that she was in her own warding against things of this like. We travelled all day getting to the twin canyon by evening. Doing a little bit of investigation, we learnt that the canyon was the ribcage of a large sandworm. This being the only viable campsite for the last couple of hours we bedded down for the night.

Chapter Four

During the night having an Air Mage along with ears and eyes, we picked up the start of a sandstorm. In deciding what to do the party sent out spirit bear and earth elementals looking for places to shelter. I in the end decided to sit with the horses who had put themselves in the best possible place against the storm and wait it out, using Calm and Earth Wall to help make it bearable. During the storm from the edges of our vision husks moved towards us. Admittedly Sau Rus sensed undead long out and nobody did anything then so we kind of deserve this.

Among the salt husks were a couple of Salt Golems, one of which we aptly named Salt Lick. Working out when Salt Lick drew water from our bodies on to him the water damaged him, so we asked Rayne to case Rainstorm on him. When this was done, he exploded into a set of lightning which destroyed all but 3 Husks and 2 Golems. Which we eventually took down. After that we sat down to rest and wait out the last of the storm.

Chapter Five

We spent the time DAing and Divinating the Crystals. The POO we got back from them was Athas which was the same plain as the finger. On the evening of the 16th the storm broke giving us the chance to look at and identify the stars we needed for the next bit. I say we but really I’m Taking credit from our ONE navigator, Rayne.

We followed the positions till dusk and camped the night. The next day we discussed which way the next bit of the Rutter referred to which was ‘downhill’, which in a flat desert really threw all of us. We tried to see if we could manage the next bit of the Rutter from where we were but with that failing, we picked a direction and tried that one first. Basalic created a gem and buried it in the sand with the idea that we’d find it if we had to come back. Which I then pointed out we didn’t have an E&E with locate, or even a locate spell invested.

Heading in the direction the plants were carried by the wind we set off and walked for 2 days stopping at lunch in a salt field, where Basalic summoned a rat and got a 1 foot long rat with a 2 foot long tail with a thagomizer at the end of its tail, and of course when Basalic started casting speak with animals he spooked the rat and it attacked him.

Learning from the rat that there is a whole colony of them living out here and they call this their place we assume this is what the Rutter meant. Rayne growthed her birds and sent them looking for razer wing Vultures, which they came back and reported were to the west, spitting out a couple of feathers. With Grizelda in a hurry to get out of the salt plains, I think she was scared of the rats frankly I was more afraid of both birds which were now bigger if not as big as I am, we left going west.

Spotting the Mirage in the morning Rayne worked out that something wasn’t quite right and worked out we were half a day behind where the Rutter thought we would be upon seeing the mirage. So we walked till lunch towards the mirage which faded about 20 minutes after it appeared. Camping the last of the day till the following morning going the way the mirage made us turn cause we didn’t want to walk straight for it.

Towards the end of the day we spotted the Oasis and decided to head towards it, knowing this is where Yusuf and his men where attacked. Sau Rus detected a greater undead, which he worked out was a Knight Gaunt, from a while out so we readied ourselves for a fight knowing we could potentially talk to it but probably would have to make it disappear for a week.

Once the Knight Gaunt was dispersed without any conversation, it seemed set on killing us, we looked around the oasis. The plants in the oasis where dead or dying from a drain effect and we found 12 skeletons. Using the skills among our party we worked out that there were 19 places of death that Sau Rus could interact with. 12 from Alusia, Yusuf and his men, and 6 from another plain that Sau Rus couldn’t talk to as they didn’t share a language. We decided that we were camping outside the oasis that also seemed to be a very low mana zone.

Chapter Six

We headed off from the Oasis following what was left of the Great Palm and walked on Two Days till we meet the Great Wind. When we asked the wind which way to go it gave your air mage a sense of walk into it. We walked into the wind and found a Lump that turned out to be a dead creature (Tembo) from the Plane of Athas which dead 3-4 days and we had deduced was something’s pet as was being feed cut bits of meat. The thing that had killed it was larger that it, for reference this thing was larger than my biggest horse but not quiet elephant big. We continued, camping for the night in the wind.

In the morning we headed out getting out of the winds finding more lumps mid-morning (Crodlu). Again from Athas and had been kept as pets till they had died 3-4 days ago. These things could have been killed by the last thing that we found dead but I have a bad feeling that the same thing killed both of these sets. We continued through the rough terrain coming up from inside the ridges by evening. During the night we heard far off roaring, far enough away that our animals weren’t concerned about it.

The next day we got to the cliffs in a couple of hours and started to investigate to find out what the next line of the rutter meant. Grizelda set Bear off to explore and see what sort of caves where around and what was in them and Rayne sent the Birds to explore. While that happened and the report from Bear came back, we went to explore the caves and get to what he called the big cave.

In the big cave were half a dozen (standard dozen, not bakers dozen. I’m a Halfling but I know how to count) of bird, lizard things that didn’t have a GTN, but when we asked them what they were they believed they were cave birds. Eventually The DA’s asked the right question and got Association with a power, Stolas. They referred to him as The Great Raven. Looks like we worked out One of the Two names that we had to say on the ledge.

In other news the bird reported a large creature that roars coming through last night, in a group of a dozen men. Getting all we could from the weird cave bird things, Basalic decided to go for a climb up to the ledge and apparently beyond looking for something.

Chapter Seven

Using the last couple of DA’s on the birds we discovered that they we’re also packed to Amon and Voso. We settled down to lunch and waited for Rayne’s Birds to come back. When they came back they reported about a dozen people Northwest of our position. During Lunch we discussed what was happening if the people whose names we have to speak which lead to

 “So we’re negotiating. Yay” – Rayne
*Head in hands* - Everyone else

After lunch we Fire Arc’ed to the ledge and had Rayne, Party Leader, say two of the names thrice and see what happens. Once said a sand elemental thing rose from the sand ledge. When DA’ed the thing came up as a Sentient Construct. It asked us what we were looking for. We told it we were looking for the temple. A door opened in the wall with a corridor that lead through to a large room.

The large room was full of dust and sand when we got about half way down checking for traps as we went before a person in desert clothes who wouldn’t give us a name came out. When Basalic said that he didn’t know the members of the Triune, which is what this person called these three demons, he said that Basalic needed educating and therefore educated the entire group and our sacrificial pig on basic prayers and the History on how the Triune got together to defeat a common enemy.

We let Sau Rus sacrifice the pig seeing as he’s the one who wanted to bring it with us. We also gave some other small offerings to Amon and then left. With out anything. That we came to loot. And were getting payed for. Don’t worry I’m just as confused as you are.

Chapter Eight

After leaving the temple there was a small insistence that we go back in and loot the place on the philosophy of 'kill, loot, leave'. We wont say whose idea this was.

Working out how to get back in was the first hurdle. Seeing as the sentient sand creature wasn't likely to fall for "Oh I forgot my coat". SO our DAers and our Earth Mage (who just happens to also be a DAer) got to work working out what we could do to the wall. Eventually summoning an earth elemental, this told us that he didn't see the wall it was a cliff to him. Makes sense being a temple dedicated to demons of AIR, fire and enchantment.

While there was brief discussion on whether we took an hour to prep ritually and summon some creatures, Basalic decided to pick at the wall, the first time doing nothing, but after casting diamond weapon on his pickax to get through the magic, it triggered 4 creatures, one fire elemental, one air elemental, the sand creature and what looked to be a fallen angel.

Having half the party blinded we grouped together to fire arc off the ledge. Holding out as long as we could as the blindness seemed to be clearing fast, we eventually decided to get some distance by fire arcing to the entrance of the cave 300 or so feet back. But of course the enemies that could pursued.

Chapter Nine

After killing the Air Elemental and the Sand Creature we Fire Arc’d back up to the ledge around the Fallen Angel. After finishing of the Fire elemental and the Fallen Angel we healed up and opened the door and charged back in. In the large room between all the individual temples was full of Imps. 1/3rd of the Imps were armoured and weapons spelled up from each of the temples. The fact that they all took about 1 hit to send back to where they came from made it really easy to plow through them.

Chapter Ten

We headed into the temple of Amon and were confronted with 2 Fire elementals, the priest, a couple of hell hounds and some bugs. Eagle held the right flank, Rayne lightninged everything up the middle and we worked on the left as things progressively came through portals. Some members of our party played a bit of yoyo going down and getting back up. You know it wouldn't be a temple to a demon if at least one person didn't fall down. During the fight Rayne managed to close the portals through to the Hells by thunder-clapping the crystal in the middle of the dome of fire, giving us the chance to clean up the remaining enemies.

Chapter Eleven

Soon after the fight ended and we got those who were still taking a quick nap back up the fires in the room started to flicker, then soon went out. But nothing happened here other than some people couldn’t see, which was an easy fix. We looted about 300lbs worth of stuff from around the rooms and got to work on the artifact cabinets. Each of the cabinets had a hellfire trap which we counter spelled giving us enough time to get them open and looted. Along with this we had 4 chalices. 1 of which was completely fine to touch which made us all long lived sentients if we weren’t already (in other words we wont die of old age), All the rest said Death, Doom and Destruction would befall us if we drank from the chalice we linked this to the curse that all of us had, so of cause Rayne did what any curious adventurer does and drank. We could have very easily lost our Air Mage there and then. Luckily we were all strength of stoned so it was only a fatigue wipe. Grizelda and myself also drank from the Mithril Chalice that we sadly could not take with us as no one could pick it up and when Sau Rus tried he resisted a double effect Hellfire compared to the other Chalices so we said no. We are yet to find out what this effect is.

Oh and just so it’s on record Rayne let her birds drink from these Chalices as well so we have long lived, Heroism and 2 other thing, Eagle and Murder. It’ll be interesting to see what happens. Might want a Philosopher of Magic in that at some point.

There was also a large obsidian tome in this chapter that Grizelda interpreted the runes on the front to read something like “The teachings of fire and Magic by Amon”. When Rayne tried to skim the first page she got a headache and stopped. At this point we decided we were buggering off, killing the 8 or so imps that had returned and left, taking note that the other temples doors had force walls on them. Getting safety outside we summoned a cloud and went even further.

Making it back to Izmiraldi in 3 hours we met with Ranjit our employer and got paid for our work. We stayed the night and then went home to get rid of our curses.

Epilogue

People

Ranjit Kayal: Trader and Harbour Master of Izmiraldi
Mostafa: Ranjit's pet Eagle, heavily enchanted when seen including animal growth.
Tachus: Azurian Trader, trader in alchemical wares, monster parts and a small selection of magical items.

Ranjit's Desert Rutter

Translation of Ranjit's Rutter into common. Summary of the information contained.
Note written at the top by Ranjit.
"Do not travel at night. Despite the heat the desert is safer during the day. Many dangerous things come to the surface after dark."
Last known journey by Amir Ali Pasdar was Summer 817.

Follow the valley up the river for a day. Pass between the peaks and continue on into the desert for two more, keeping the peaks at your back.
On the fourth day, when the sun lies opposite the peak, turn into the setting sun. Continue till you reach the twin canyon. Water can be found by following the sun directly rather than turning to the setting sun.
From the mouth of the twin canyon, turn following 'The Great tip' at dawn. Continue till the sun reaches its Zenith, then follow 'The Tube' till dusk.
Travel downhill for two days, until the place of the rats is met. Follow the sand caws for water.
See the flights of the vultures, and go towards their nest.
Look for the mirage at dawn. Travel askew towards the oasis.
Follow the great palm from the pond until the Sirocco is met, then travel to it's source till the second night.
Find the sandfall amongst the cliffs, climb to upon it's peak and standing upon the ledge speak the names of the Chief Castellon of Hounds & his Carrion Brother Thrice. The way shall be revealed.

Mil Sci

Mil Sci will receive an EP bonus for ensuring Combats run smoothly and quickly Primary Mil-Sci: Jaycey

Daily Pattern

  • Sleep/Camp 12 Hours
  • Travel 8 Hours
  • Meals 2 Hours
  • Rituals 2 Hours

Default pattern, vary as wanted by party

Watch Order

Sau Rus Grizelda Basalic
Jaycey Rayne

Travel Magics

Rayne; Summon Cloud

  • Total speed: 33 Miles / hour.
  • Duration: 50 Hours
  • Ft cost per duration: 1 FT / 9 Hours.
  • Effective travel distance: 1500 Miles.

Caster & Spell

  • Total speed:
  • Duration:
  • Ft cost per duration:
  • Effective travel distance:

Marching Order

Front scouts:
Main body front:
Main body rear:
Tail Guard:

Formations

Buffs

Buffs listed in the table don't need to be detailed, other buffs not on the table must be mentioned at the time they are cast.
Y means always on, N/- means never on, 'Sit.' means when the party has time for buffs before a fight.
Weapon Spells which weapon/s it is going on normally should be noted also.

General notes.


Long Duration Buffs

Magic Rk Effects Dur Sa Jc Ra Gr Ba Bi
Wrath Cloak (Sau Rus) 15 23 Def 5 DR(non magical silvered) +16 Stealth 480 mins ? ? ? ? N ?
Necrogency (Sau Rus) 20 -25 infection -6 Drain +65 Vs Fear lesser undead 25 Hours Y Y Y Y Y Y
Vapour Breathing (Rayne) 9 Protection from fumes & gases. 5 Hours N Y Y Y Y Y
Rune Shield (Grizelda) 10 +15 def +2ft/+2en armour 11 hours (six targets) Y Y Y Y N Y
Greater Heart Rune (Grizelda) 6 heals 6 EN ?? Y Y Y Y Y Y
Strength of Stone (Basalic) 20 +20 EN OR +20 PS 21 hours Y Y Y Y Y(EN) Y
Armour of Earth (Basalic) 20 +42 DEF, +1 AP 10 hrs 30 min ? ? ? ? Y ?
?? (Caster) ?? ?? ?? Y Y Y Y Y Y

Short Duration Buffs

Magic Rk Effects Dur Sa Jc Ra Gr Ba Bi
Spectral Weapon (Sau Rus) 15 +16 BC +5 DM 20 Mins ? ? H1/2,Ces ? BS,H1/2 Clw/Tal
Diamond Weapon (Basalic) 7 +7 SC 12 minutes ? ? ? ? ? ?
Trollskin (Basalic) 16 Regenerate +1 EN per pulse 1 min 50 secs ? ? ? ? ? ?
?? (Caster) ?? ?? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?? (Caster) ?? ?? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?? (Caster) ?? ?? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?? (Caster) ?? ?? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ?
?? (Caster) ?? ?? ?? ? ? ? ? ? ?

Map

Loot

  • Bought
    • Goggles of Sand Vision

SP

Items

  • Salt Golem Fight
    • 2 Crystaline Hearts
    • 30-60,00sp in gear
  • Temple of Amon
    • Staves of Fireball x3
    • Weapon Belts of mass Flames x2
    • Scrolls of massive protection against magic x10
    • Hurled Mace
    • Desert Tulwar x2
    • Quiver of Fire Arrows x3
    • Magic ring
    • Suit of Silvered Scale Armour

Gifts

  • Reliable Rucksacks (given to)
    • Rayne
    • Basalic
    • Sau Rus

Calendar

Winter

Moonday Duesday W'ansday Th'rsday Frysday Reapsday Sunday
Moon2.jpg Samhain
Frost (7)
  1 Guild Meeting 2   3   Left Guild 4   5   6  
Moon3.jpg 7   8   9   Arrived in Izmiraldi 10   Solar / Wotan in Opposition Conversed with Death 11   Lunch with Ranjit 12   Tachus Arrives in Izmiraldi 13   Talk to Tachus and leave for the first Oasis
Moon0.jpg 14   Auspicious full moon. 15   Twin Canyon 16   Storm Breaks Evening 17   Follow the stars 18   19   Follow Tumbleweeds 20  
Moon1.jpg 21   Rats Nest 22   Mirage 23   Oasis where Yusuf's men died 24   Wotan enters "North Wind"' 25   The wind 26   Large dead creature 27   Smaller dead creatures
Moon2.jpg 28   Gatar Depression Solar Eclipse Cliffs and temple raid. 29   Left for Seagate 30    
Snow (8)
  1   2   3   4  
Moon3.jpg 5   Returned to Guild 6   7   8   9   Moon enters "The Camel" 10   11  
Moon0.jpg 12   13   14   15 Solstice 16   17 The Duke of Carzala's Winter Ball 18 Yuletide
Moon1.jpg 19 Days of Chaos 20 DoC 2 21 DoC 3 22 DoC 4 23 DoC 5 24 DoC 6 25 DoC 7
Moon2.jpg 26 DoC 8 27 DoC 9 28 DoC 10 29 DoC 11 30 Twelfth Night  
Ice (9)
  1   2  
Moon3.jpg 3   4   5   6 First Plough 7   8   9  
Moon0.jpg 10   11   Wotan exits retrograde. Thunor enters "The Spear" 12   13   14   15   16  
Moon1.jpg 17   18   19   20   21   Freya passes "The Lovers" 22   23  
Moon2.jpg 24   25   26   27   28   29   30