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Diamond Lake: Letter to beloved mentor
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glen



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
Posts: 219
Location: Hamilton

PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:13 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #31 I love Greyhawk Reply with quote

5th Day of Growfest - 13th Day of Planting
Blackwell Keep - Diamond Lake - Free City of Greyhawk

Dearest Allustan

We returned to Diamond Lake with no further incident. I spent the two days getting back and another four days identifying a couple of magic items each day. I must get a better identify focus. A good reason to go to Greyhawk and avoid pointy-headed gnomes!

Of course, while you and Marzena compared notes and discussed the Kyuss infestation of Blackwell Keep, I successfully studied and copied Shocking Grasp and Ventriloquism from the Vecna cultist spellbook into my own. It only cost 200 gp, and we can sell the spellbook in Greyhawk for 1350 gp.

I made up some new scrolls, replacing those that we have found useful so far: Disguise Selfx4, Rope Trickx2 and Webx2, and completed my research into new spells from my Academy of Magic notes and current experiences: Clairaudience/Clairvoyance, Gaseous Form, Magic Circle against Evil, Water Breathing. I feel that I have finally recovered from the shock of my reincarnation as an orc, and believe I am now ready to begin crafting wands of magic spells. Benazel the Alchemist however, has no idea what kind of materials I need to make a wand and doesn't stock anything useful. I hope I don't have to import the stuff myself. Another good reason to go to Greyhawk!

Ragnor seems quite interested in helping me create Wands of Cure Light Wounds. He'll be providing the spell energy and I guess I will have to do everything else. If everyone chips in 100 gp, I can make another wand with Ragnor's help. I'll have to mention to my brothers on the way to Greyhawk. Corvan can wield the wand.

On Planting 7 we departed Diamond Lake for the Free City of Greyhawk. I confess I was looking forward to seeing the city again. Although I didn't get out much while I was studying at the Academy of Magic - my studious academic habits taking precedence - I was rather enjoying the prospect of a return holiday in the Free City. The sun is shining, I am free of the ill-effects of my reincarnation, we have gold in our pockets, and brothers and friends to travel with. Ah bliss! Even if my eyes hurt from the dazzling sunshine.

Our first day of travel was uneventful. On the second day we were accosted by an individual wanting a donation, with his friends in ambush nearby. I blasted with subdual Fireball, Lightning Bolt, and a salvo of Magic Missiles before settling on Blindness as an effective weapon. Ragnor had a neat spell which turned ground cover into sharp spikes - but you wouldn't know from looking! We ended up with the donor unconscious, one of his friends Blinded, and the other two surrendered. Soon afterward we encountered a Greyhawk garrison patrol on its way to Diamond Lake, so we handed them over and I dismissed the Blind effect. We were allowed to keep their 4 daggers, three shortbows and one masterwork shortbow.

The rest of our trip to Greyhawk was uneventful.

We had to bribe the guards at the Druid's Gate of the Free City to get in with your package! They didn't like the look of the worms but were happy to issue a 'license' for 100 sp.

We immediately set off for the House of Eligos, getting directions from the helpful guards. Eligos has a very ostentatious mansion, and his butler Pollard seems quite competent. We explained our travels and adventures so far - omitting mention of only the Sphere catcher and petrified wood staff - and he agreed to do further research. We are supposed to return in a week - Planting 17. Eligos recommended we stay in the Crooked House in the Foreign Quarter, and mention his name to the proprietor, Tarquin.

After bidding farewell to Eligos, we took his advice and enquired about lodgings at The Crooked House. Tarquin gave us very, very good rates - 2 gp each/day. I believe we paid for two weeks in advance.

There was still enough time for Corvan and I to visit the Grand Temple of Pelor. Corvan was warmly received and got taken to his Commander Dochlar to make his paladin's report. I didn't recognise anybody at the Temple, and no-one seemed to remember who I was. They wouldn't let me get any yellow Pelorian robes, didn't sell gold or silver holy symbols, and my great idea of establishing a Temple of Pelor in Diamond Lake went down like a dragon who forgot how to fly.

On the way back to our quarters we popped into a place recommended by Eligos - Maldin & Elenderi's Magic Shop. They apparently don't belong to the Guild of Wizardry so their prices are a bit higher. I got talking with Elbrak there and confirmed they would be happy to offer credit for the Bracers, Hide Armour and Vecna cultist spellbook we have. Elbrak quoted me 4,000 gp to add Twilight capability to the mithral chain shirt Corvan was happily wearing at the time. This was a 1,000 gp more than I had expected so I'm going to have to recalculate my budget and negotiate a bit with Corvan and my brothers.

Jolan and Ragnor were sporting cool looking magical tattoos when I got back - and that gave me a great idea.

We had a well-deserved sleep that night and I could hardly wait for the next day in Greyhawk.

Planting 11
Things are so busy, I only have time to note what we've done. The Crooked House is located in the Midnight Muddle and the area is well equipped with interesting shops and potential for shopping expeditions:

Corvan paid his respects to his family today, and gave them some presents from his share of the adventuring loot. Ivory dice for Imjad, his father, pearl necklace for Eleys, his mother, and some coin for his younger siblings, Higal, Durenda, and little Isa.

We are members of the Gladiator Guild - for the princely sum of 10 gp each - we have some sort of manager, called Turman Kirov, and in two days time "the Main Evant" will debut in the arena. Wow, I'm a gladiator! I wonder if it will help get a girlfriend.

While we were at the arena there was an embarrassingly physical reunion between Ragnor and Sheridan. Damn. In a city of nearly 70,000 souls we just happen to find ourselves in the same place.

Jolan arranged for his masterwork breastplate armour to be equipped with masterwork spikes

We arranged with Ph'xeris the Miracle the enchantment of Ragnor's shield and Jolan's armour at a good price, 1,000 gp each. He couldn't do Twilight on my mithral though. Ph'xeris loves his art but not his tailor as he walks around in the nude. It was a huge shock at first but we find if we keep staring at his face we can have a reasonable conversation. Honestly, I wonder sometimes how humans stay standing up in the wind with such puny physiques.

Finally flogged off that red pedestal! After getting two opinions from metallurgists, who only offered us 1 gp/lb - when I wanted 10 gp/lb or 2,000 gp - we got a better offer of 300 gp from Ph'xeris the Miracle. The first metallurgist I went to said something about the metal being extraplanar, so we figured Ph'xeris would be a better buyer for that.

I visited the Academic of Magic and joined the Greyhawk Guild of Wizardry! It's only 100 gp/year and you get 10% off scroll and spell writing materials, and 10% off the magic items in the Guild Shop! Paterus, the Mage of Exchange, explained all this to me. When I signed the membership form I got Geased to confess to the Guild if I breach any of the Guild requirements. I got access to the library, and have to pay 10% of any money I receive for magical services over to them. They'll know if I don't!

But does the Guild offer a clearinghouse for magical requests and services? Even a sodding message board? No! You're expected to rent a place and set up a shop, for Boccob's sake. Apparently the Guild of Wizardry has competition from the Church of Boccob, and no wonder with such abysmal commercial services for its members.

However Paterus was a gem in helping me with the blank scroll from the Faceless One. A See Invisibility revealed invisible writing, while Read Magic revealed the writing to normal sight. Comprehend Languages failed to decipher the script, and I couldn't make head or tail of it. I might have to make a special trip to Eligos to enlist his help, don't you think?

In any case I wasted no time in spending a few hours in the library. It always felt like the library itself was watching me the whole time. In typical arcane fashion nothing has any order at all and I couldn't find any of the spells I wanted to copy. Another day tomorrow!

On the way back to the Crooked House I visited Souf's paraphernalia, run by a lizardfolk. I asked Souf what he knew about black dragon worship amongst the southern lizardfolk tribes, but he got all worked up about racial prejudices and utterly denied that lizardfolk would even consider worshipping black dragons. He had his arm in a sling after an incident with falling wood from Zud's Towerin Armory. I offered the services of the paladin to heal his wound. Corvan later found that Souf had a broken arm and Corvan could only ease some of the pain.

While I had been on my fruitless search of the library the others had been in the Old City dispensing healing - including Jolan, using up some of his spells in his Spell Storing ring. They reported back to me about Rain Barrel Man - some nutter who claimed to expound the prophecies given to him by the Golden Eye. He seemed quite accurate in his descriptions of worms, and announced that the Age of Worms is coming, and something about a decaying dragon. I think I need to visit this individual and interrogate him further.

That night my brothers and I frequented the Two-Necked Swan, a rough ale-house run by two half-orcs Tudge and Ruck. I won 20 gp bettting on Jolan and Ragnor's fighting ability and spent 5 sp on various drinks. Ragnor had the most difficult time of it, but both my brothers made me proud by defeating their opponents fair and square. They got 5 gp and free ale for the rest of the night.

Planting 12
We spent this day preparing for our Gladitorial combat on Planting 13. I cast Shield into Jolan's Spell Storing ring, and Jolan collected his newly spiked armour from the armourer. Ragnor picked up his now magical shield from Ph'xeris, who was still naked but obviously had a sense of humour as he had painted a disturbing flower on Ragnor's shield.

I got the symbol of Pelor tattooed on my forehead from Jharan Hubris, the local tattooist. It activates a Cure Light Wounds and will then fade after use. I paid 50 gp for it and I think it looks great. Corvan says it is a good resemblance.

I spent most of the day in the Guild of Wizardry's library, but only found two of the spells I was looking for - Blur and Protection from Energy - which will cost 450 gp and two days, maybe four, to write into my spellbook. I don't have the money, so will have to ask the others if they think these spells would be useful. Now that Jolan has that Ring of Spell Storing, I think we all benefit from having as many spells as possible.

Planting 13
A sad day for us at the Arena which left a bad taste in my mouth and heavy feelings of guilt.

The Main Evant was up against the Five of Clubs. The combat started with three of the five humans drinking Invisibility Potions but fortunately I had cast See Invisibility prior to combat. In the end the latter only helped a little. Despite Blinding two of them they still fought on, and I was Tanglefoot Bagged to the ground and set upon by two of the team, one Blind and one not. Fortunately Corvan protected me and felled both. I got off a Lightning Bolt on the most persistent Blinded one which just scorched the walls of the arena. I forgot about the damage range of that spell.

Ragnor seemed to miss his opponent a lot. Jolan brought down one of the Five, and finished off the last Sighted opponent with a mighty thrust through the chest, killing him instantly. The crowd roared it's approval, we earned some money on the side, but I seem to have lost my taste for the Arena.

When an individual acquires a great power, the use or misuse of that power is everything. Will it be for the greater good, or will it be used for personal or for destructive ends? Now this is a question we should all ask ourselves...

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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glen



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
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Location: Hamilton

PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:14 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #32 Law & Order Reply with quote

14th-15th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk

Dearest Allustan

This day has been a bit of a blur for me. I spent the day at the Guild of Wizardry trying to find someone to decipher the Faceless One's scroll, but to no avail. On the positive side, I did manage to track down some more spells that I was looking for. My wish list is:

1st level:
Mount (my real mount is too smelly and ornery)

2nd level:
Blur (found Planting 12, 200 gp to write in my spellbook)
Bear's Endurance
Bull's Strength (after I get this, I will challenge my brothers to a bit of arm wrestling!)
Cat's Grace
Eagle's Splendor (I wonder what this does?)
Fox's Cunning
Locate Object (my secondary priority)
Owl's Wisdom
Protection from Arrows (my main priority)

3rd level:
Protection from Energy (found Planting 12, 300 gp to write in my spellbook)

Of course, I need to speak to the others regarding funding such write-ups.

The others spent the day at the arena and preparing for the arena, from gathering information about the other groups to getting additional forms of enhancements - mostly in the form of tattoos.

They spoke about Arena Rankings - the Main Evant has gone from 3 to 5 after our debut debacle with the Five of Clubs becoming the Four of Spades. Auric's Warband is 9, Pitchblade - a couple of dwarves - are 8, and the Draconic Brood is 7. I don't understand any of it, and I don't really want to go back, but don't tell my brothers that!

Jolan had some gold stolen by pickpockets, and the three somehow managed to get to fight a mighty Chimera - the three-headed beast of legend! Bah, it almost made me regret going to the library.

We all met in the Crooked House that night for drinks. Corvan and I retired early, leaving Jolan and Ragnor below propping up a table.

I was awoken by noise from below. At first I thought I would have to do some disciplining of my unruly younger brothers but the bar room seemed to be filled with cries of murder. I noticed two things in quick and disturbing order:

1) The door to my room was open.

2) There was a bloody dagger on the floor, which was one of my ordinary daggers missing from my knife vest! I had wondered where it had got to!

Some merchant type who I had never seen before appeared in my doorway and shouted "Murderer" at the top of his voice and accused me of stabbing Tarquin. Since he seemed so certain about it, and I knew it was a lie, logic made it clear that he was involved somehow. Unfortunately he left the upper level before I could do anything, and Corvan and Jolan were a bit slow on the uptake of my logic. <sigh> The next time, those two just need to know that I am always right!

By the way, I don't think I mentioned this in my last letter, but Tarquin is a gnome and a very nice person!And here I was thinking all gnomes are pointy-headed like Tidwoad! It just goes to show you can't judge an entire race of creatures by the actions of just one individual of that race.

Anyway, I later learned that Jolan managed to race out after the merchant, while Ragnor got himself into a barfight, and Corvan brought order to the place by ordering drinks for everyone. Ragnor healed Tarquin of his stab wound, and Tarquin gouged Corvan 20 gp for the drinks.

Jolan fell down the stairs with someone coming up the stairs, but this someone had a companion with a club who threatened me. I turned Invisible, and went down the stairs, then cast Fly on myself. Whilst floating past Corvan I quietly asked him where Jolan was and discovered that Jolan had pursued my accuser out into the night. I flew out the open doorway, and unfortunately went left rather than right.

If I had gone right, I would have discovered Jolan and the merchant (illuminated by a Fairie Fire cast by Ragnor) already in the company of a Greyhawk guard patrol, but I did not and I returned to the roof of the Crooked House before my spells ran out.

Corvan was packing up my stuff so I dismissed my Invisibility and handed myself in (aren't I such a good boy?). While leaving the Crooked House in the company of the Greyhawk Watch, Corvan also gave Tarquin his word as a Paladin that while Corvan was alive, I would not harm Tarquin. Though it was rather rude of me to do so - given that Corvan had vouched for me and put his honour and standing etc etc as a Paladin on the line - I did mention that /I didn't harm him the first time! /

To cut a long story short, we were hauled off to the nearest garrison house and interrogated by the Watch. We were released into custody of the Paladin and a guard was placed on our rooms at the Crooked House. We went up before the magistrate the following day - well, after a two hour wait. Despite the merchant being in custody the previous night - actually in the cell next to us, and I had the satisfaction of calling him names until he complained about it to the guard - the merchant mysteriously failed to appear for the hearing. Jolan was apoplectic about it. It was really the word of the Paladin of Pelor, Corvan, that saved the day. I don't think they really cared much for the word of an 'orc' and an orc that could become invisible and fly around 'spying' on the Free City of Greyhawk. We explained that I was born and raised amongst humans, and my orcishness is only a recent thing, but I'm not sure how much was believed.

Jolan got into big trouble with the guard, since he counter-accused them of bribery and corruption. I'll have to make sure he isn't on my defence team if this ever happens again. False witness catching yes, legal advocate no.

My brothers and I were released into the custody of the Paladin again - I'm not sure what this means in detail, but I will do the right thing as it is my duty to do so. We were also warned against taking matters into our own hands. Since we don't even have the supposed name of this merchant, that will be hard to do. We are going to have to ask Corvan to investigate further...

The only good thing to come of this is that I had plenty of time to convince the others to fund the Twilighting of my mithral chain shirt. Since all the legal matters took so much time, a trip to the Guild of Wizardry's library was an exercise in futility on Planting 15, so we did some shopping! The only small cloud was that Sheridan joined and proceeded to be his annoying little self.

We picked up Jolan's armour from Ph'xeris the Miracle, who greeted us in his normal state of undress. What disturbed me more was the red pedestal we had sold him the previous visit: it now sported a likeness of the Ebon Aspect on it with three heads looking suspiciously like my own incarnations as human, half-orc and orc. Ph'xeris had painted every one of Jolan's spikes a different colour. I had not thought there were so many different colours in the universe.

Then we mercifully visited Maldin & Elenderi's Magic Shop. I arranged with Elbrak the commercial aspects of the 4,000 gp transaction. He surprised me by saying that the elf who would be enchanting the mithral chain shirt wanted to speak to me. I was a bit concerned about this, since I know people take me at face value as an orc rather than understand my true human heritage. And I am not very good at explaining it all.

For the record, I owe Corvan and my brothers 661 gp each (2642.5/4, rounding up - I'm so grateful to them), the exact breakdown:

500 gp Bracers of Armour + 1 (1000 gp marker value)
582.50 gp Hide Armour trade-in (1165 gp market value)
1350 gp Vecna Cultist Spellbook (2700 gp market value)
165 gp mwk shortbow (330 gp)
45 gp shortbows x 3 (90 gp)
----
2642.50
1400 My funds
----
4042.50 Total

I hope I will be able to pay them off quickly.

Your devoted student

Anlan Evant
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glen



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
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Location: Hamilton

PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:14 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #33 Halfling rising Reply with quote

15th-16th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk

Dearest Allustan

The meeting at Maldin & Elenderi went fine - although I forgot to ask when my Twilighting will be finished. I expect if I visit around the 20th that would be OK. I would be so excited if I didn't have to set an example for my impressionable younger brothers.

I neglected to mention that I found some more interesting spells in a series of tomes on magical enhancement of physical characteristics by Tenser yesterday. They include Bear's Endurance, Bull's Strength and Cat's Grace. The list is looking good! Now I just need money!

1st level:
Mount (my real mount is too smelly and ornery)

2nd level:
Blur (found Planting 12, 200 gp, 2 days to write in my spellbook)
Bear's Endurance (found Planting 14, 200 gp, 2 days)
Bull's Strength (found Planting 14, 200 gp, 2 days)
Cat's Grace (found Planting 14, 200 gp, 2 days)
Eagle's Splendor (I wonder what this does?)
Fox's Cunning
Locate Object (my secondary priority)
Owl's Wisdom
Protection from Arrows (my main priority)

3rd level:
Protection from Energy (found Planting 12, 300 gp and 2 days to write in my spellbook)

Ragnor had some appointment or meeting with the druids outside Greyhawk. We agreed to meet him back at the Crooked House.

Did I mention that one of Ragnor's dogs was killed in the fight against the Chimera the other day? I was sad when I found out.

Corvan, Jolan and I were all discussing how we would deal with my accuser and framer, and the first order of business was to find the merchant. Corvan knew someone, a gambling buddy, who often frequented the Rusted Pot. This tavern is run by two dwarves.

While enroute to the Rusted Pot someone noticed that we were being following by the Greyhawk Watch. I thought that was marvellous, and it cheered me greatly that Greyhawk's finest were looking out for us. For some reason the others didn't like it. Bah, this is true civilised society, where one is held responsible for one's actions.

At the Rusted Pot we were met by silence when we walked in the door and the inhabitants saw Jolan in his spiked armour. A halfling broke the ice by buying everyone in the bar a round of drinks. The halfling turned out to be Hob, Corvan's gambling buddy. He seemed an interesting chap and very knowledgeable about Greyhawk and various goings-on. He even offered to help Jolan find his stolen money (hah!) and find information about Filge, whom we know comes from Greyhawk.

After compiling a list of possible suspects wanting to get me into trouble, and Corvan ordering some Dwarven whiskey, the others tried to sneak out the back way to avoid our Greyhawk Watch trail. I had to go with them, even though I disagreed. Fortunately Greyhawk's finest proved their mettle and there were guards waiting out the back as well, looking inconspicious. Hob exclaimed his delight in seeing City Watch protection in dark alleys! Ah, the benefits of a just and lawful society!

I wanted to see the Rain Barrel man in the marketplace. While we were travelling there Hob amused us all by pointing out various shady going-ons, and advising us on how to conceal our valuables better. I'm thinking that it might be useful to keep the halfling around.

Rain Barrel man was everything the others had said about him. Some of his gems included "Children of the Free City - sense the doom that is building before your blind eyes!", and "hear the dead dragon's roar", plus "can you not see the rot beneath your feet?!" Jolan got all excited about meeting someone who knew what was going on and before I could stop him Jolan and Rain Barrel man were trading face slaps, with the latter being knocked out. Then our ever watchful City Watch got involved and it took some mighty talking to avoid more legal hassles. Jolan, my brother, once again not knowing his own strength. At least this time he didn't accuse the Watch of being paid off by the crazy one.

Lastly it occurred to me that your friend Eligos could make some progress with this scroll I have from the Faceless One. We visited Eligos, and enlisted his aid in deciphering it. I append a copy. Unfortunately we have already done most of what the Faceless One suggested already, but there is mention of the Rift and perhaps we should visit the Mistmarsh again just to check it out. However, I was right about Smenk's involvement. Is anyone still trying to kill Smenk? It would be interesting to know, and more interesting to know if they have succeeded while we have been in Greyhawk.

Eligos invited us for dinner on the 18th. By this time he will have completed his research. I will ensure that everyone dresses appropriately for the occasion. We briefly discussed aspects of the K'yuss zombies, and he told us that the tiny worms burrow through their infected host, eat the brain and transform the body into a K'yuss zombie. Eligos wasn't certain about the disease they carry but I'm sure the news will be just as bad. So not only are the zombies a threat, but the worms are much worse, and we need powerful attacks and defenses against both.

Corvan, Jolan and Ragnor seem to have their hearts set on getting into the Gladiatorial Championships, and in particular, of relieving Auric of his Champion's Belt. I confess the latter does not displease me but I don't want to tell them straight out that I don't think the Arena is a good idea any more. Fortunately the entry fee is about 20,000 gp so most teams have a patron who funds the entire entry, for whatever reasons of honour, power, money, or love of a good fight. Eligos only bets on the gladiatorial games, he does not back entire teams. I was pleased when the others didn't think to ask if Eligos knew of someone who might be interested in backing the Main Evant. Speech is silver, but silence is golden, and I'm glad I kept my mouth shut when the question was raised!

Hob seems to be an interesting individual. He can also wield magic wands. I think he should purchase some wand quivers if he wants to get serious about the wand business. I've offered to make him some wands if he wants, at a great price. I think we'll get along fabulously. I think I'll suggest 300 gp for a 0-level wand, 500 gp for a 1st level wand and 3000 gp for a 2nd level wand. If he wants a spell I haven't got then the cost of writing it into my spellbook is extra as well, assuming I can find it. I think that's fair, and he won't be able to get it cheaper anywhere else. Of course, I don't expect to spend all my time making wands. But I am itching to make my first wand!

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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glen



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Location: Hamilton

PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:15 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #34 The Sodden Hold Reply with quote

17th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk

Dearest Allustan

A beautiful day dawned in the Great City.

At breakfast our new friend Hob Burrow waxed eloquent about his belief that a group of thugs was kidnapping people and taking their place somehow. Why this sort of thing would involve impersonating myself and framing me for attempted murder he did not have a working theory for. He thought there might be a merchant area in Greyhawk and even a Merchants Guild where my mystery merchant's identity may be known. He announced he would spend the day looking into archives about the Age of Worms and also if there is a list of missing persons available that he can "acquire".

Ragnor returned to the Crooked House with Sheridan in tow, and a new companion called Will Jones. Ragnor claimed that Will was also a Greyhawk native who could help us navigate the byzantine urban life of the continent's largest city. Aside from the fact that Will looked a little elvish, I welcomed him with open arms (metaphorically) in our on-going quest to find my framer.

Soon after a group of City Watch arrived looking for Jolan, seeking to see if a purse found in the guardhouse was his or not. It wasn't, but Will recognised that a mark on it (a stylised single-masted sail boat) was similar to one on a warehouse down by the docks called the Sodden Hold. It was excellent that Will noticed this as the guard were most uncooperative in letting me examine the purse myself.

We girded our collective loins - since my reincarnation as an orc I have more than most - and departed immediately the dock area of Greyhawk. On the way we discussed in depth how to lose our City Watch escort. Will discovered through the clever means of simply asking our dedicated examples of Greyhawk's finest why they were following us: they were under orders to keep us under observation.

Once we arrived near the Sodden Hold - a large stone warehouse overhanging the river, no windows and a large iron double door the only visible entrance - we turned down the street and around the corner. Out of immediate sight from our escort I then cast Invisibility Sphere and we all vanished!

The City Watch were very concerned by our disappearance, and departed muttering something about 'search patrols'.

While we were invisible, we crept up to the large iron double doors where Sheridan picked the expensive and well used good quality lock. This took some time and I bemoaned the fact that I had not selected Knock for one of my spells that morning. I suppose Sheridan has to be good for something.

Through the iron double doors was a large warehouse with a catwalk on the far side from the doors. There were doors in the northern and southern sides. As we tried to creep quietly towards the southern doors, Jolan was very noisy and suddenly what appeared to be a barrel began to attack him with sticky pseudopods!

A short but very violent melee ensued, with another two barrel things joining in the fight. Those pseudopods had some range: I tried to fire off my memorised Magic Missile but lost the spell trying to duck a blow from one of them 10' away! I had to use my Wand of Magic Missiles for the rest of the encounter.

Will seems to be able to shoot a great number of arrows at speed, which proved effective, as did Corvan's flail and Jolan's trident. Ragnor did rather well with his axe but then turned himself into both a black bear and a wolf. At first we thought his identity had been subsumed by a changeling but it turned out to be just some druid thing that happens from time to time. Ragnor had to retreat from his barrel, so I hope he learns that he is more effective with his axe. I hope one of his alternate forms is not a bison, as I do not like the images that appear in my mind with such a possibility.

After dispatching the barrels, we searched the rooms to the south, turning up some old records of the business that was in the warehouse 10 years ago and a simple silver magic ring which Ragnor put on. I found a room with a ladder leading up to a catwalk over the east end of the warehouse. I scouted the catwalk and didn't find anything, so we turned our attention to a single door in the north wall of the warehouse, which we assumed would lead us into the northern end of the building built out over the river.

Sheridan swore up and down that the door was not trapped, which we all took as a signal to move a safe distance away. Jolan and Sheridan decried our collective lack of courage, but it was nothing to do with courage, what we lacked was faith.

Our lack of faith was justified when Jolan or Sheridan tried to open the door and instead the floor opened up beneath them. Sheridan flung himself to the side safely, and Jolan plunged 40' to his ... safety. His Ring of Feather Fall activated and he floated down to the spikes at the bottom, which made Jolan feel right at home. Ragnor used the Rope of Climbing to get Jolan out.

It was clear to me that the catwalk must have a secret door leading north, and Will confirmed this with a magic spell! Wonders will never cease. I must ask him about this spell as it would be an interesting addition to my spell books.

The secret door led to a stairway down into an area with a number of cells (5 in total) and double doors again leading to the north.

In the cells were:
* An elven woman.
* Two human men.
* A male human body (it looked like a corpse at first, but Corvan thinks the person is still alive) who looks like the mystery merchant.

At last! Physical proof that I am not guilty of the stabbing of Tarquin!

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:15 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #35 Doppleganger doublecross Reply with quote

17th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, the Sodden Hold by the river dockyards

Dearest Allustan

Sheridan set about picking the prison door locks and we engaged in various conversations with the prisoners, trying to elicit what useful information they had.

The two humans appeared to be Greyhawk City Watch soliders, called Martel and Regim. I gave them a dagger each and asked them to accompany the other prisoners outside to find their City Watch counterparts.

The elven woman identified herself as Ilya Starmane, one of the lesser noble families. Sheridan and Will spent a lot of time talking to her for some reason.

Lastly the merchant gave his name as Gattle, but he seemed somewhat addled in his brain. Sensing an intellectual companion, Jolan eagerly engaged him in discussion.

Just as Sheridan was trying to pick Ilya's cell door, Martel and Regim burst from their cell wielding long swords! Corvan was stabbed, while Ragnor was badly hurt. A brief but violent fight ensued, and I eventually took Regim down with a Magic Missile.

Martel still fought on, and in his desperation to escape, he pushed Ragnor through the door into the stairway. But Ragnor pushed him right back, and my brothers finished him off. Unfortunately Jolan struck his blow after Martel fell to the ground, so I was a bit disappointed that we did not have both prisoners to hand over to the Greyhawk Watch.

Martel's corpse did not maintain his outward human appearance upon death - he turned into a grey humanoid form with strange eyes. At last! Unquestionable physical proof of a doppleganger!

Ragnor and Will stabilised Regim under my capable direction. The two changeling's swords seemed to be masterwork and Martel was wearing valuable armour, much more so than had been immediately apparent. Unfortunately we had tied Regim up before stripping his armour, but I did liberate the wine flask he carried. We put Martel's corpse back into his original cell and locked Regim up in another one!

Ilya gave us some details about the horrible physical and mental torments she and Gattle, and others, had suffered under the doppelgangers. They had read her mind, and apparently chopped her leg off and stuck it back on again. I didn't quite understand the logic of the last part and I found her experiences hard to believe. She mentioned something about an elevator elsewhere in the warehouse which descended into the area where these experiments were carried out.

Ragnor found Ilya's cloak and jewellery in some small chests by the stairs. He also found a small bag with the City of Greyhawk Coat of Arms, filled with gold. Will said it was the tax take. That went into the Bag of Holding along with the swords and armour.

Sheridan offered to escort Ilya and Gattle outside, and return with Greyhawk Watch reinforcements. We agreed to this as it was clearly not safe in the warehouse with shapeshifters around, and we needed to press on.

We listened at the far doors, and entered a large chamber with a broken floor, the part of the warehouse that stretched across the river. Narrow planks led to two small platforms of warehouse floor, the rest was dank and dark with corpses floating in the depths and weapons set in an upright position. Obviously traps for the unwary who entered the water.

Ragnor walked across the planks without falling in. Jolan tried to follow but simply fell in the water and decided to swim. I cast Fly on Corvan so the Paladin would cross the warehouse with a bit of dignity, and also because I know he has two left feet.

When I tried to cross, I was buffeted by wind, and was suddenly struck from nowhere! I cried out in pain, and cast Invisibility on myself, but found myself still assailed by an invisible opponent. The others fired arrows blindly into the air above me, and I retreated back to the doorway platform where Will was, consuming healing potions on the way.

We were attacked in turn by two invisible air elementals. We only managed to survive thanks to Ragnor's clever use of Faerie Fire to illuminate our opponents when they attacked someone, whereupon arrow and axe, sword and Magic Missile showed them the error of their ways in waylaying us! The air elementals had vague humanoid form, and Jolan fell to their dire blows, but Corvan flew to his rescue and saved my brother.

At the end of the encounter we were sorely bruised and beaten - the Wand of Cure Light Wounds has only 8 charges left in it now - and we still have to descend down the elevator!

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:16 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #36 Seeing dopplegangers Reply with quote

17th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, well below the Sodden Hold by the river dockyards

Dearest Allustan

Corvan flew down the well shaft, there was a splash and after a long while, the level of water started to go down. We descended at speed down the ladder of the shaft, and jumped into the barrel.

We found the Paladin up a stony pillar with a door. Apparently he pulled a lever and the water drained away. He thought something was living in the water, but it obviously left through one of the large open drains in the chamber.

We listened at the door and heard voices - seemingly saying the same thing over and over again. We entered a short corridor into a larger one with multiple single doors on the opposite side and double doors at each end. Corvan entered the room with the voices, declaring authoritatively "Hold in the name of the Shining One!"

This impressed the two individuals in the room no end, dressed in City Watch garb. They drew their swords and hurt Corvan. We knocked them down with little difficulty. In the four bedrooms we discovered jewellery, wardrobes stuffed with clothes of every imaginable type and style, and full length mirrors. I managed to find Pelorian priest robes in sunny yellow! Around this time, Sheridan turned up but without the hoped-for reinforcements.

Ragnor went off to explore the main corridor, turning right. Shortly afterwards Jolan noticed that Ragnor was missing. Jolan investigated and fell down a pit trap. I jammed a dagger into the mechanism and looked down into the pit. My darkvision saw 60' and still no bottom. Quite concerned at the fate of my brothers by this time, I threw a cloth, illuminated with a Light spell, and it vanished. A Permanent, Silenced illusion made this pit trap and the spikes Ragnor fell on particularly deadly. We used the Rope of Climbing to get Jolan and Ragnor out.

I noticed Jolan was using a new golden wand as a back scratcher. He said he found it in the bottom of the pit. I took it off him before he used it on other parts of his body, and maybe accidentally activating it.

The room with our former opponents had a metal door in it. Sheridan picked the lock, and we entered an information centre with details of infiltration, maps, lists of well-known individuals, and up and coming heroes. A half-orc team in the arena was mentioned, but "no infiltration required".

The exit from the information centre led to a room with shiny, mirror-like metal walls. Corvan led the way, and he seemed to lead us around in circles. Suddenly Sheridan leapt out and attacked Corvan with a longsword! Yet Sheridan was behind me (and he uses a rapier)! Or was he? Corvan stabbed at Not-Sheridan while I zapped Not-Sheridan with the Magic Missile Wand. Ragnor tried to engage Not-Sheridan in combat but a mirrored wall rose out of the floor and blocked his passage.

Sheridan wanted to run around but I stopped him and Ragnor agreed - it was too easy to split up and be infiltrated by dopplegangers that way. While I was physically preventing Sheridan from running off I was attacked by a Not-Corvan, again with a longsword (Corvan uses a scimitar or flail). I stepped away and missed with a devastating Scorching Ray (obviously not used to targeting friends and companions), then moved out of immediate combat so Ragnor could step up. Not-Corvan bashed Will, Sheridan shot arrows.

Corvan dispatched his not-Sheridan, and moved to engage Not-Corvan in combat. I encouraged Jolan to move around to flank, but got blocked off by a mirrored wall along the way. I understand Jolan followed my directions and attempted to flank the Not-Corvan. Not-Corvan wisely ran away.

After a frantic chase through the mirror maze and two secret doors we entered an octogonal room where all of us were tied up and gagged on chairs, and threatened with coup-de-grace by the Not-Corvan.

Things got really confusing! Suffice to say Corvan activated his Blinding shield, disabling a few of the obvious dopplegangers in front of us. I downed the Not-Corvan with another Scorching Ray and the Not-Jolan, Not-Ragnor burst their bonds and attacked us. While Corvan and Jolan engaged these two in combat, I prevented attacks from the Not-Anlan by judicious use of subdual Burning Hands. When the Not-Anlan disobeyed my command to surrender, I gave him hotter Burning Hands. The tied-up Sheridan did not seem very happy about all this.

Will proved that he can take out a blinded, tied up Not-Will by putting arrows in his heart.

I undid the gag on the tied-up Sheridan, and it turned out to be the real Sheridan. The proof? I declared that the real Sheridan seemed really tied up at the moment, and Sheridan asked if that turned me on. I warned him that I still had a Scorching Ray available and that I was not afraid to use it.

It seemed that Ragnor was engaged in combat with the Not-Sheridan whom we thought was the real Sheridan, and that was the reason Ragnor had not yet joined us in the fight against the nest of dopplegangers. I understand he had cast a Lightning Storm spell or something, but had come off second-best against the Not-Sheridan. The Not-Sheridan ran away, and Jolan ran back into the mirror maze to pursue the creature.

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:16 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #37 Thrall terror Reply with quote

17th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, well below the Sodden Hold by the river dockyards

Dearest Allustan

We rallied ourselves to pursue Jolan and ensure he did not get himself into further difficulties. I picked up his trident which he had carelessly left lying on the floor. I'm always picking up after my brothers.

As we were coming to his potential rescue, we met Jolan coming back! This was clearly Not-Jolan as he carried a longsword. Ragnor also engaged Not-Jolan in Orkish, to which the Not-Jolan made non-committal grunts.

However, we have determined these dopplegangers' greatest weakness - if we go along with their deception, acting as if they are who they are pretending to be - then they have no reason to reveal their deception by attacking us. Then we can choose when to strike.

So we let Not-Jolan lead us into a large chamber. As the Not-Jolan entered, Ragnor caught sight of the Not-Sheridan, shouted an inarticulate challenge, and charged with weapon raised. Jolan caught sight of Not-Jolan and like his brother shouted an inarticulate challenge and charged with fists raised. I did not know what was going on, so I cast Ghost Sound, and directed it to mimic a Greyhawk guard patrol singing one of their catchy ditties.

When I finally entered the chamber myself, I was shocked to see you, Allustan, on the raised dias at the left end of the chamber! The right side of the large chamber included an odd contraption that looked like it could seat an ordinary person reasonably comfortably.

Jolan and Not-Jolan were involved in a punch-up/sword stabbing fight to the death, while Ragnor was threatening the tied-up Not-Sheridan with violence if he didn't reveal his true self.. Not-Allustan was saying something, so I rushed forward, with a wide false grin on my face and wildly waving my arms in greeting.

"Stop your brothers fighting" boomed the voice I know so well from Not-Allustan. Since I knew it wasn't really you, I handed Jolan his trident as I went past him, and yelled at him with a wink: "Stop fighting!" Of course Jolan ignored me. I don't think even the wink was necessary.

I then asked Not-Allustan how he escaped from the prison but I was concentrating on distracting Not-Allustan so much that when a pit trap opened up beneath me I fell the full 40' onto spikes. Darkness claimed me.

Personally, I think I did a really good job on engaging Not-Allustan, and given what I heard later, I believe I saved everyone from certain death. Read on.

I regained consciousness with the Paladin's prayer to Pelor ringing in my ears and his hands on my bloody chest. Praise be to the Shining One!

Ragnor the butterfingers had split most of my two healing potions trying to get them down my throat, and had not successfully returned me to the land of the living. Hence the need for the Paladin. I raised my hand to the symbol of my faith on my forehead and activated it's healing properties. I was feeling better and better by the moment.

Not-Allustan and Not-Jolan were dead. Corvan had slain the master, with Jolan's help. A fireball had nearly killed Ragnor and Will, but the Not-Allustan had only managed to cast one other spell, which Corvan had shrugged off. Just as well I had kept him distracted!

The Not-Sheridan was still alive courtesy of Ragnor, although the real Sheridan was looking malevolently at him. It turned out this doppleganger's name was Ixaxian.

Ixaxian revealed details of what was happening. Not-Allustan was Telakin, and Telakin was taking orders from someone else in the city. The dopplegangers were told to get rid of us, to infiltrate our group. Using the device in the room, they could extract minds, thoughts and entire memories, perfectly duplicating individuals. Jolan gave the machine some attention with his axe, while I salvaged the precious metals, particularly the silver hood.

They had captured Sheridan some time ago, and in fact Ixaxian had been Sheridan since the beginning! Our 'rescued' hostages were still in the tender care of another doppleganger in a safe house somewhere. Ixaxian had also released Regim from upstairs. I wonder which corpse Regim is now?

After a quick ransack of the chamber and Telakin's bedroom, we came up with a greataxe, bejewelled ring, scroll and wand from Telakin himself (all magical), 2 sparkling gems, a strange magic rug and 1500 gp from the bedroom. The bedroom also contained a huge magical mirror which we will have to come back with Shrink Item to collect: there were a variety of documents and forgeries which we also took as further evidence of the doppleganger's infiltration of Greyhawk society.

There was also a message dated the day after we arrived in Greyhawk which said:

"I have a task for you, thrall.

Meet me at the sewer junction beneath the cold forge and I will give you the details.

There are some troublesome small minds that must be removed."

The document is signed with a strange symbol that was also tatooed on the dead Telakin's forehead. I include a crude sketch. Corvan and Will recognised that the "Cold Forge" is an armour and weaponsmith operating in the Artisan's Quarter.

We collected three masterwork longswords from deceased dopplegangers.

On the way out we debated what to do with the two unconscious dopplegangers in the octogonal room. We couldn't take them with us, and as we were badly hurt we needed to leave asap (the Wand of Cure Light Wounds was all used up!) I was a bit frustrated as my brothers could easily have carried one of each to the surface. In the end we just left without them.

In the stony pillar chamber another 20' entranceway had opened up on one side. While we were considering what to do with this new occurrence, we were hit with something not physical, but mental, some sort of devastating mind blast. Corvan and I were unaffected of course, both of us being extremely mentally tough and resilient, but my brothers, Sheridan and Ixaxian were stunned for a good minute or so.

We saw movement in the new corridor so I clogged it up with a Web from one of my personal spell scrolls. That gave us enough time to herd everyone stunned back to safety in the corridor. Then Corvan and I waited if anything further happened while the others recovered.

Something did! Something hacked its way to the front of the web and started firing crossbow bolts at us! Corvan responded with his composite longbow and I shot off a devastating Scorching Ray. The web caught fire and burned its way backwards. Our assailant fell with another salvo from myself and Corvan. We saw another similar individual retreat from the entranceway, so for good measure I sealed up the corridor with another Web scroll.

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:16 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #38 my name clear at last Reply with quote

17th-18th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk

Dearest Allustan

Ixaxian has ALWAYS been Sheridan - we haven't met the real Sheridan in Greyhawk yet. The /bastard/. I actually feel a great deal of sympathy for Sheridan at the moment. Wonders will never cease.

We discussed at length Corvan's apparent arrangement to let Ixaxian go in return for showing us where the two hostages were. Since we had plenty of literary evidence, and the testimony of two innocents is worth more than a doppleganger corpse, I reluctantly agreed to go along with arrangement. Ixaxian sweetened the deal by giving us another sparkling gem, so that was alright.

Ixaxian took us to a little store, knocked on the front door and received no reply. He lifted up the doormat, removed a key, and unlocked the front door. Inside were Ilya Starmane and Gattle none the worst for their experiences. There was a lot of grain in the store.

Corvan told Ixaxian to leave and never return to Greyhawk again. Before Sheridan could do anything about it, Ixaxian was gone. Good riddance.

Then we went back to the Greyhawk City gate, where the guards were really pleased to see us. They took us immediately to the Captain of the Guard, whose name escapes me at the moment, and we spent several tedious hours explaining what had happened. Starmane's testimony was very helpful, and my name was cleared! But we still got an escort home.

That night I went straight to bed, totally exhausted, and still badly hurt from my fall down the pit trap. Jolan and Ragnor still had enough energy to go out for a night on the town.

The next morning I was up bright and early, and made sure I learnt Shrink Item in anticipation of recovering the mirror from Telakin's chambers. Ragnor healed me, thanks little brother, but the others were still asleep or busy or something, so I dragged Will along to the Sodden Hold.

Unfortunately it seemed that everything had filled up with water from the well onwards. Pox. Well, the mirror won't rust and perhaps we could all come back in full force to recover it.

Back at the Crooked House Corvan was looking like thunder at Jolan, and Jolan wasn't looking well at all. Jolan was missing an eye! Ragnor was muttering strong words about someone called Vinac. I berated my brothers for getting up to foolish things, and in particular Ragnor for leaving Jolan to his own devices. Jolan seems to have fallen in with a bad crowd in Greyhawk, maybe we should get back to Diamond Lake as soon as possible. Some people just can't handle the culture shock of living in a large city.

I identified the two rings. I really need a better focus for this work. Ragnor received Telakin's magic Great Axe, which will be identified last as he can already activate its magic by using it. The great axe seems to have some kind of frost ability. The silver ring we found in the Sodden Hold's office is a Ring of Swimming, which we gave to Will. Telakin's ring was a Ring of Protection + 2, Jolan got that. The scroll contained a 5th level spell, Dominate Person. It will be a while before I can understand it well enough to write it into my spellbook. The two wands remain unidentified.

Will is a marvel. He sold our jewelry for a goodly sum, 900 gp, and he managed to get twice as much from the three sparkling gems than we would have otherwise obtained - 6,000 gp, paid in platinum of course.

The party collectively decided to fund the creation of two Wands of Cure Light Wounds, reimbursement for the Web scrolls, and fund the creation of replacement Web scrolls (I think I can also scribe some See Invisibility scrolls with the money as well - the painful lesson from plank chamber!)

600 pp sparkling gems x 3 (well done Will!)
====
120 PP each party member, enjoy!

1500 gp Gold
900 gp Jewelry (thanks Will!)
85 gp Martel's armour
800 gp mwk longswords x 5 (1575 gp market value)
160 gp Ragnor's mwk Great axe (thanks Ragnor!)
----
3445 gp
-800 gp Craft Wand: Cure Light Wounds x 2
-600 gp Scribe Scroll: Web x 2, See Invisibility x 2
----
2045 gp
====
409 GP each party member, enjoy!

We divided up the treasure and made our merry separate ways shopping - since I find shopping for weapons and armour boring, and the others find the delights of scroll writing materials and wand creation dull. I even got my own escort of Greyhawk guards. It makes me feel so important. I wonder if I have time to enjoy their company in the library?

I forgot to pawn off the silver salvage from Telakin's mind shredder device, so there is still more to come!

I visited Maldin & Elenderi's Magic Shop, and Elbrak confirmed that my armour would be ready for pick-up on the 20th. I bought some Magic Missile wand supplies at the Academy of Magic, and visited the Grand Temple of Pelor to enquire about creating Wands of Cure Light Wounds. They didn't sell this material, and indicated I should enquire at the Church of Boccob. I left the Temple my card, actually a scrawled note, indicating that my arcane arts were available for their use at no charge, as a loyal and most devoted worshipper of Pelor. The cleric I spoke to might have believed me if I still had my tattoo on my forehead.

I splashed out and purchased the most fashionable clothes for the modern Greyhawk wizard. I even got the jewelry - silver chains and gold clasps, and little gems.Cost me 80 gp, but well worth it. I wonder if I should get a signet ring made. What design should I have?

Ragnor talked to Kirov at the Greyhawk Arena, and apparently we've been challenged by Kullen's Kutters, which includes my best friend Kullen from Diamond Lake, backed and financed by Balabar Smenk. Kirov indicated that they specifically wanted to fight us on the 19th. How charming! I'm rather looking forward to catching up with Kullen again.

Ragnor also mentioned that the Gladiatorial Championships have special rules, and some of the spells I used in our first fight would not be allowed. No skin off my chin, since Ragnor didn't think to get a copy of these rules, and we don't have a sponsor anyway. I can't see my brothers being able or skilled enough to organise a sponsor in such a short time period, and I'm too busy to help them this time.

Ragnor, looking a little beat up from the arena, mentioned that Vinac was wearing an eye patch. It sounds like one of those stupid body-mutilation fads that half-orcs are gullible enough to fall for. I remember the time in Diamond Lake when it was trendy to tie coarse rope tightly around a certain body part. I don't know how many times I told Jolan if he played with it too much, he would go blind. Looks like I was half-right.

Our social calendar is getting crowded, I wonder if I will have enough time to do the things I want to do? Knowing my brothers and their predilection for getting into trouble, probably not.

18th Dinner at Eligos
19th Kullan's Kutters fight - is this in the morning or the afternoon?
20th Pick up my Twilighted armour! Get tattoos at Jharan Hubris, scribe some scrolls?
21st Gladiatorial Championships - but we have no sponsor, which is good
22nd-24th Crafting Wands - 2 Cure Light Wounds (need Ragnor for the first two days), then a Wand of Magic Missiles and a Wand of Protection from Evil (must purchase materials for latter)
24th Rooms expire at Crooked House I think, I hope Tarquin likes me again!
25th Planting - 6th Flocktime warm comfortable Guild of Wizardry Library writing up spells! Oh, heaven!
or 25th Planting cold dank dark stinking Sewer Junction beneath the Cold Forge - gosh I wonder where I'd rather be!

Anyway, I am waiting for the hired carriage to arrive to take us to Eligos' place for dinner. I've got two wands that I'm going to ask him to identify for fun. Oh, I'm so excited: our first real social event in Greyhawk. We're coming up in the world!

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:17 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #39 Making magic items is fun Reply with quote

18th-20th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk

Dearest Allustan

It seems neither Corvan nor Jolan got much sleep last night, but neither are talking about it so I won't intrude upon their privacy.

While we were waiting for the hired carriage to arrive (my shout - only 10 gp!), Hob turned up with some information about his search for more details on the Age of Worms. Apparently books from the Greyhawk Grand Library have gone missing on this topic, but Hob can get us a list of borrowers - good work, little halfling.

The meal with Eligos went swimmingly, except that he had been approached by a Not-Anlan during the day and told this doppleganger everything he told us that night. So that means that if the power behind the dopplegangers isn't part of the Ebon Triad conspiracy, he or she is certainly part of it now, by virtue of possessing the information. We will have to deal with this as soon as possible.

We never thought to warn Eligos about the doppleganager infiltration, so he could take appropriate precautions. So in case you haven't done so, I recommend you take precautions against changelings - they must know you somehow as Telakin was able to take on your form in the Sodden Hold.

After the confusion caused by the Not-Anlan was cleared up, Eligos showed us his expertise by identifying the wands I had brought along. No wonder I had trouble identifying them - one was a Wand of Cure Moderate Wounds with 36 charges, and the other was some Wand related to a specific spell from Pelor with 16 charges. Ragnor gets the former and Corvan will formally get the latter identified by the Temple of Pelor tomorrow. I was a little disappointed that they were divine wands - I was looking forward to adding new arcane wands to my collection.

Eligos spoke at length about his research into the Age of Worms. He is collating some material that I need to take back to you in Diamond Lake.

A short summary would be that The Age of Worms is also known as the Eternal Ruin, the Night Never Ending, and is mentioned in many evil texts such as the /Liber Mortis/, /Necronomicon/, and the /Book of Vile Darkness/, as well as the /Apocalyptic Scrolls/. It is a prophecy appearing consistently world-wide, and taken up by cults, that glory in the arrival of a Dark Lord to rule the world.

According to the ciphered scroll left by the Faceless One, Kyuss is the herald of this Overgod, but Kyuss often works to deceive other cults in their actions. And why Kyuss would be interested in combining the three religions of Ethynul, Hextor and Vecna seems a little strange to Eligos (and to me). I'm sure Ethynul, Hextor and Vecna might have some say in the matter, and I bet it wouldn't be positive.

The discussion then turned to the nature of the Kyuss zombies and their ever-present worms. We can confirm that:

The Kyuss zombies regenerate, spreading Kyuss worms and disease with their attacks
The Kyuss worms infect flesh and transform victims into Kyuss zombies and then breed in the zombie body to spread more Kyuss worms
The Kyuss disease destroys mind and body, and while Eligos didn't think a disease victim would transform into a Kyuss zombie, I am not so sure

The zombies can be dealt with by sword, axe and fire as normal zombies, but care must be taken not to spread one's attacks. The worms are easily squashed, but on no account let them touch your bare flesh for any length of time. The Kyuss disease can be cured with Cure Disease, as Corvan demonstrated.

If the Kyuss zombies weren't so terribly dangerous, I would suggest capturing one for further study.

We then discussed what to do next. I was strongly of the opinion that this information should be distributed as widely and as far as possible, as we already know the Mistmarsh has a Kyuss infection. If even one Kyuss zombie got into Greyhawk the city could fall within days - and we were able to waltz into the city with a dead worm! Eligos thought that would cause unnecessary panic and confusion. He will distribute the information via Tenser (the Tenser!) to the Circle of Eight, and Corvan will inform the Temple of Pelor. I agreed that this would be best for now.

Eligos mentioned that his mentor was Tenser himself - and that you were also an apprentice of Tenser. I don't recall you ever mentioning that. Tenser was your mentor. I'm such a fan of Tenser's Transformation: it is really the spell that proves to all how powerful magic can be. Eligos said that Tenser was no longer one of the Circle of Eight, although Bigby, Mordenkainen and Rary are still in the Circle. I wonder if there will ever be room for a powerful orc wizard on the Circle - what irony that would be! Something to think about anyway.

The elderberry wine at Eligos' place was really very good. When Ragnor tried to spoil the effect by naming every aspect of the wine and the herbs and plants behind it, I just told him it was always elderberry. I thought I was quite funny, but then I had already downed a bottle. Or two.

I vaguely recall some mention of Tenser's agent, an elf named Celeste, would be picking up information from Eligos the next day, and someone asked Eligos to ask Celeste to ask Tenser if Tenser knew anyone wanting to sponsor the Main Evant at the Gladiatorial Championships. For some insane reason Eligos agreed to ask. I don't know why he is wasting his time, no-one going to stump up 20,000 gp to back a team that has only had one fight in the arena and just got lucky <hic!>

The next day dawned bright and shiny over my hangover but for once in my life I was glad I had got it wrong: we were not fighting Kullan's Kutters until the 21st. Today, Kullan's Kutters were up against the Woodchucks and the others went off to observe their battle tactics.

I spent the day purchasing scroll material from the Guild, getting healing potions for Corvan and wand material from the Church of Boccob, and trying to arrange our lawful return to the Sodden Hold. But apparently the mechanism to the water chamber has been destroyed, and water now fills the entire complex <sigh>

Corvan, Ragnor and Will returned in good spirits from the arena, having won some money betting on Kullan's team. Will gave each of us 40 gp as our share of the "Finder's Fee" for returning Gattle's tax sack of gold. What a nice guy. Since Ragnor was in such a good mood, I asked him to assist in crafting a Wand of Cure Light Wounds on the 20th.

My first wand crafting session - ironically a divine wand - went well. It was annoying having to explain every little step for Ragnor, but I think it helped in the crafting. Certainly Ragnor showed some professional interest, otherwise I don't know how he could have withstood the eight or so hours cooped up with me. I'm sure next time I won't need his assistance for so long.

I don't know what the others did that day but Will seemed pretty pleased to receive the fully charged Wand of Cure Light Wounds. Not as pleased as I was to pick up my new shiny Twilighted mithral chain shirt - with a slight reddish tint. I'm rather looking forward to trying it out tomorrow.

18th Dinner at Eligos
19th Scribed scrolls
20th Craft Cure Light Wounds Wand with Ragnor, picked up my Twilighted armour!
21st Kullan's Kutters fight - is this in the morning or the afternoon?
22nd Gladiatorial Championships - but we have no sponsor, which is good
23rd Craft Wand of Magic Missile? Or Wand of Protection from Evil? (must purchase materials for latter)
24th Rooms expire at Crooked House I think, I hope Tarquin likes me again!
Craft Wand of Light Wounds with Ragnor
25th Craft other wand not done on 23rd
26th Planting - 7th Flocktime warm comfortable Guild of Wizardry Library writing up spells! Oh, heaven!
or 25th Planting cold dank dark stinking Sewer Junction beneath the Cold Forge - gosh I wonder where I'd rather be!

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant

PS My scroll scribing and wand crafting notes follows.
I think I might invest in a couple of Shrink Item scrolls next - if I had had one for the mirror, I'm sure the mirror would have paid for the investment!

(all separate scrolls so I can use them in my scroll organiser)

Comprehend Languages 25 gp
Hold Portal 25 gp
Mage Armour x 2 50 gp
Invisibility 150 gp
Knock 150 gp
See Invisibility x 2 300 gp
Web x 2 300 gp
----
1000 gp

[Note to DM: 40 XP lost]

Wand of Cure Light Wounds 750 gp

[Note to DM: 30 XP lost]
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glen



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
Posts: 219
Location: Hamilton

PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:17 pm    Post subject: Letter #40 the Main Evant investigate branding Reply with quote

20th Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, the Crooked House
21st Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, Greyhawk Arena

Dearest Allustan

I felt a bit ill the other day, and so did Corvan and Ragnor, but Ragnor saw me right. Good on you, little brother. The Evant brothers look after each other!

While I was slaving over crafting a Wand of Cure Light Wounds for the party, the Captain of the Guard, Gaspard Nives, met with the others in the Crooked House. I don't know what transpired, but there was a gleam in Will's eyes afterwards and I could smell platinum in the air. I expect all will be revealed in due course, or else.

I hear Tirra visited as well, and expressed concern about Sheridan's preparations to visit the sewers below the Cold Forge. Typical elf, running off without proper preparation. Fortunately Corvan bade Tirra to tell Sheridan that we would be investigating the place after our business with the arena is finished.

For our third visitor I was actually present - grabbing a bite to eat while basking in the glow of successful wand creation, before heading off to collect my shiny new armour! Celeste said that she might have a sponsor for the Championship Games. Ekaym Smallcask is some sort of merchant, new to Greyhawk, looking to sponsor a new but promising team <sigh> Just when I thought we wouldn't be participating much further in gladiatorial combat any more. Smallcask has an arena box decorated with a pale blue pennant, and much hangs on our performance against Kullen's Kutters.

Jolan seems not much worse for wear without his eye, and pretended to be able to see fine by closing his good eye and hitting me in the face. Easy enough to strike someone when they're not expecting it and are close to you! I shall have to teach my younger brother a lesson in good manners.

Our day at the arena dawned bright and sunny. I was glad that the sun was shining down on us, even though I was a bit dazzled by the light.

I don't know if you have been to an arena game fought under Championship rules, but with two teams we have one minute prep at the opposite ends of a 100' square in the arena. Then it's a free for all. Apparently in the actual Championships it's four teams all at once!

The Main Evant included myself, Jolan, Ragnor, Corvan and Will, plus Goodluck (my rat familiar, as you know), Ragnor's bison and Will's dog. Kullen's Kutters consisted of Kullen, a half-ogre called Kurlag, a human wielding a polearm called Todrik, a human wizard called Merovinn and Rastophan, another human who fights with two weapons and a wolf.

During the prep time I cast False Life to boost my damage taking capacity (memories of our previous time in the arena still quite vivid) and See Invisibility. We had agreed from the outset that our team would not use invisibility, since that does not give a good show for the audience. We are trying to establish some sort of "brand" with the Main Evant, something that we always do in every fight, but aside from killing one of our opponents - which I explicitly forbade everyone to do - we haven't really got an idea of what to do. Immediately prior to combat starting, I cast Shield from my wand, Enlarge Person from the wand on Jolan, and then Extended Hasted on everyone - on the understanding that we would move "normally" in the first few rounds so to give Kullen's Kutters a surprise.

Kullen's Kutters opened with Merovinn casting a spell before me. Fortunately it was a defensive spell, and I recognised it as some form of Lesser Globe of Invulnerability, with a greenish tinge. I had considered learning this spell but rejected it as being too defensive. I like spells that have both offensive and defensive uses. Since it appeared to be an important part of the opposing team's arena strategy, I tried to dispel it with a targeted Dispel Magic. My first attempt failed, but I almost felt the sphere collapse so Merovinn is only a little bit more powerful than myself. Ragnor tried his neat lightning storm on it but the bolt failed to penetrate the globe.

Will scored an early hit with an arrow on Kurlag, and when Jolan rushed forward screaming war cries, I think poor Kurlag got so excited he left the protection of the globe and engaged Jolan in fierce combat.

The sphere moved forward with Kullen, Merovinn and Rastophan, but for some reason Todrik was left behind. Corvan taunted Kullen, shouting in his best paladin voice to "stop hiding behind the wizard's robes and fight like a real man". Ragnor slipped behind Kullen's Kutters on his Hasted bison, and attacked Todrik with a spell. Then I dispelled the sphere - hah! and Jolan felled Kurlag.

It was all over quickly. Will's dog attacked the wolf, taking it down. Corvan and Kullen traded blows, while Merovinn cast an ineffectual spell. Ragnor chased Merovinn with a Flaming Sphere. I released a subdual Fireball behind Kullen's Kutters, felling Merovinn and scorching Todrik. I don't recall what Rastophan was doing - I think Will may have been hitting him with arrows.

Then, horrors of horrors, Jolan stepped up to Kullen and let loose his barbarian fury on the hapless half-orc. Kullen was killed outright after the second or third blow, I couldn't tell. Todrik surrendered in the face of his own personal Flaming Sphere, although he was already dancing around as if his armour was getting too hot for him, and Rastophan was glad to tend to his dog. Corvan and Ragnor provided some healing to all who needed it and weren't already dead.

I don't know. The first time I could understand that it was an accident. But the second time? I will have to discuss with Jolan the wisdom of restraint this afternoon. I hope he heeds my words as his older brother.

And yes, I did bet on us winning the fight. Another 250 gp for me.

21st Kullen's Kutters fight in the morning
22nd Gladiatorial Championships - but we probably have a sponsor now thanks to our performance against Kullen, which is bad, and a reputation, which is worse!
23rd Craft Wand of Protection from Evil (must purchase materials for it). Get some magical healing tattoos from Jharan Hubris
24th Extend our stay at the Crooked House, definitely another week!
Fine, let's stop Sheridan from doing something on his own and go down into the cold dank dark stinking Sewer Junction beneath the Cold Forge

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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glen



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:18 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #41 Champions of the Free City? Reply with quote

21st Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, Greyhawk Arena

Dearest Allustan

After our dubious victory against Kullen's Kutters, we were invited to lunch with Ekaym and Celeste in the Green Dragon. Ekaym even put on a carriage for us. It was a pleasant enough lunch, although I was disgusted to see that Jolan hadn't even washed his hands after killing Kullen. That was gross and it would have put me off my lunch if I hadn't been so hungry.

There were two female hangers-on but after greeting us enthusiastically, they only seemed interested in Corvan and Will.

Ekaym outlined the Championship timeline:

21st Teams drawn at Arena Dinner tonight
22nd 1st round 4-team free for all, 2000 gp purse
23rd 2nd round 2-team fight, 5000 gp purse
24th Rest day
25th 3rd round 2-team fight or 1-team vs mighty beast called "Mad Tooth", 10000 gp purse
26th 4th round 2-team fight, 20000 gp purse

My understanding was, if the beast fight is a win for the beast, then the winner of the 3rd round also wins the 4th round by default

We are apparently sequestered away underneath the Arena immediately after dinner in a place called Caenopy. Caenopy provides both security and limits the resources that can be brought to bear on winning teams. It is an interesting concept.

Speaking of resources, I attempted negotiations with Ekaym to match the purse at each level, or at the very least provide some additional funding to defray expenses. Unfortunately, once again the others demonstrated their abysmal negotiating skills. Corvan seems to want to fight for honour - as if the Arena has any of that - Jolan just wants to fight, and in the hubbub I didn't catch why Ragnor and Will are participating. I will stand by my brothers and friends through thick and thin - and I have died doing so - but if some fat rich merchant-noble type is going to be making money out of our blood, sweat and tears, we should at least obtain our fair share of the elderberry pie! I think I got Ekaym's agreement to provide us with healing potions, but I need to check the contract.

Immediately after lunch we departed on various shopping expeditions. Will gave every one in the party 80 platinum each, apparently some reward money from Greyhawk itself for our services to the Free City. I would prefer a much more public acknowledgment, but I was happy to receive the money.

I spent 300 gp on Cure Light Wound potions and 150 gp on similar tattoos from Jharan Hubris. I'm not sure what the others spent, but I've already exceeded my share of the purse for the 1st round, and the fight will get progressively harder each day.

As for Jharan Hubris, his skill as tattooist seems to be second only to that of his skill at drinking. I asked for equilateral triangles of Law on the back of both hands, and I got some sort of pentagram. When I pointed out his poor geometry, he suggested I should find someone else. The nerve of the man! As for the symbol of Pelor on my forehead, well, at least it is some sort of face! He can't be the only magic tattooist in Greyhawk, I wonder who is direct competition is.

I made sure I bathed before attending the Arena Dinner. I didn't wear my best clothes, but serviceable enough. The dinner was laid out in the Arena, and it was a magnificent repast. I resolved to do justice to the efforts of the cooks.

I had a most unfortunate meeting with Khellek, who insinuated that I had been stealing spellbooks from the Academy of Magic! I pleasantly wished him well, and that I would have a Fireball with his name on it if he managed to get to the later rounds. I think I scared him.

Loris Raknian, owner of the Free City Arena, gave a speech which stirred the blood, and pronounced us all "Champions of the Free City" while we are competing. He sat down to thunderous applause. I wonder if I am allowed to use the title afterwards?

Talabir Welik, Champion's Games Referee, and a wizard as well, gave a stern speech on the rules of the Arena, which certainly stirred my blood, and while I applauded loudly at the end, no-one else did. I did intend to do a standing ovation, but someone - I think Jolan - stopped me from standing up. Perhaps I can talk to Talabir after the Championships, and hear more on his Arena experiences. It wouldn't be fitting to talk to him while we are competing.

There was much hobnobbing after the speeches, and it seemed everyone else wanted to find out what the other team's battle tactics were. Jolan went around instilling fear and concern into the hearts of other teams by declaring any team using personal names or counts of the individuals involved was just asking for trouble.

Since no-one wanted to talk to me I made a pig of myself eating - I could do that for real if I have my Polymorph Self spell available.

Tirra popped by and returned Jolan's purse! Jolan was most impressed by this. Tirra asked Jolan for a return favour, to show mercy on Auric's Warband as she does not want to see Auric dead. Jolan seemed agreeable to this request. Then Tirra offered us 3 to 1 odds that we would win the Championship! Before I could stop myself, I had bet 50 platinum on it, and the others also made bets.

I also bet that we would win the 1st round, 2 to1 odds, and invested 100 platinum in the stake. I seem to have been bitten by the gambling bug, but I guess to bet on oneself is a better thing than not betting on oneself!

The teams were duly announced. In our first round, the Main Evant, rank 5, are fighting against:

Arcane Auriga, rank 6, female elven archers, the leader probably a wizard
Revenge of the Badlands, rank 5, a druid, his badger and two gnolls
The Sapphire Squad, rank 5, 2 human fighters with the look of Corvan about them, and a blue humanoid called Koresh: they fight on horseback

Before we retired in Caenopy, the Main Evant got together to discuss our first mass battle. Ragnor had made a tentative alliance with his fellow druid in the Revenge of the Badlands team, who apparently hates the abuse of animals occurring in the Greyhawk arena. We agreed that if he could keep The Sapphire Squad occupied, we would have time to deal with the Arcane Auriga. I must admit the lovely elven archers worry me. Since I am the only obvious wizard in the battle, it is likely that they will have me in their sights. I wish I had found that Protection from Arrows spell in the Greyhawk Library!

Off to bed, we have a busy day tomorrow!

Gladiatorial Championships:
22nd 1st round 4-team free for all, 2000 gp purse
23rd 2nd round 2-team fight, 5000 gp purse
24th Rest day (I hope we can get word to the Crooked House about extending our rent!)
25th 3rd round 2-team fight or 1-team vs mighty beast called "Mad Tooth", 10000 gp purse
26th 4th round 2-team fight, 20000 gp purse

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
Champion of the Free City
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glen



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:18 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #42 Death of a Paladin Reply with quote

22nd Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, Greyhawk Arena
1st round 4-team free for all, 2000 gp purse

Arcane Auriga, rank 6, 4 female elven archers, led by Rennida of Celene
Revenge of the Badlands, rank 5, a druid, Joren of the Badlands, his badger and two gnolls
The Sapphire Squad, rank 5, 2 human fighters and a blue humanoid called Korush of Sapphire: they fight on horseback

Dearest Allustan

During the one minute prep time I again cast False Life and See Invisibility, and again immediately prior to combat starting, I cast Shield from my wand, Enlarge Person from the wand on Jolan, and then Extended Hasted on everyone - and I had a plan against the elves.

Unfortunately the elves had the initiative, and despite my Shield and Corvan's Bless and something from Pelor, several arrows struck me, and nearly killed me! Having done their dastardly deed, the elven archers split up.

Jolan sprinted forward across the arena with Sunshine (Will's dog) to attack one of the elves. I Dimension Doored across the arena with Corvan and Will. Will was using Ragnor's frost axe - but they missed the elven leader, Rennida of Celene. We're going to have to practise this tactic more often.

Then the one elf which had a clear shot hit me with two arrows - and I fell down dying. If I hadn't cast False Life on myself, I would be looking at a third reincarnation already! Will was blocking Rennida's line of sight to me, so he got an arrow for his trouble from her. This made Will grumpy.

I understand that immediately after I fell down, Jolan's hapless elf surrendered, Jolan ran over and struck Rennida, Corvan ran past her to engage the other elf who had not hit me, and then Will struck Rennida a mighty blow with Ragnor's axe and killed her!

Corvan disarmed his elf, while Will heroically poured his own Cure Moderate Wounds potion down my throat, further suffering the arrows of outrageous misfortune from the elf which had dropped me. Ragnor dealt with her on his bison, stomping and goring her bloody body into the arena sand.

The last disarmed Arcane Auriga surrendered.

I awoke to the sounds of Jolan trying to impale Korush of Sapphire, the leader of the Sapphire Squad, by throwing his trident at him - Ragnor having Dominated his horse and Koresh flying 30' above the arena floor. Ragnor was also trading ride-by attacks with the two other riders of the Sapphire Squad: Ragnor obviously gave as good as he got as those two riders surrendered and left the arena. Corvan was firing arrows at Korush as well.

Total victory for us was at hand - Jolan hit Korush with his trident, and while the Revenge of the Badlands ganged up on Corvan, Corvan dropped his bow, summoned his scimitar and smote Joren of the Badlands four fearsome blows [metagame note: full attack of two attacks, 1 extra attack from Haste and 1 extra attack from Action Point]. Joren had transformed himself into a giant crocodile. But even with a Burning Sphere from Ragnor, Joren still wouldn't go down! Sufficiently recovered from my experience with ganging-up, I cast True Strike in anticipation of complete victory.

Jolan turned his attention to one of the gnolls attacking Corvan, but then disaster struck! Joren, his badger companion and the gnolls all struck Corvan grevious blows, and Corvan fell to the ground, dead!

I'm sure I screamed an inarticulate cry of rage as I released two Scorching Rays at Joren, which struck but did not bring him down. I think I remembered to cast them as subdual fire spells. Will fired an arrow into him. Then Koresh hit Will with an arrow and Will fell down unconscious. Ragnor called lightning on Koresh, and burnt Joren with his Burning Sphere.

Jolan's gnoll turned toward him and fell over unconscious - obviously exhausted after his rage had expended itself: I have seen similar occurrences with my brothers. Jolan in turn raged, attacked and killed Joren with his trident, but suffered a hard blow from the remaining gnoll. I zapped Koresh with a salvo of four Magic Missiles: Koresh responded by hitting me with an arrow. Again, Ragnor lightning bolted Koresh.

Jolan struck the last gnoll twice and killed it. Joren's badger brought down Ragnor's bison. I brought down Koresh with a subdual Fireball, and Ragnor tended to his bison with the Wand of Cure Moderate Wounds.

With the referee bellowing to the crowds "and we may have a winner if they get the badger", Jolan slayed the vicious little animal.

But the cost of victory was too high. Why are we doing this again?

Arcane Auriga, rank 6, 4 female elven archers - 2 dead including Rennida of Celene, 2 surrendered
Revenge of the Badlands, rank 5, a druid, Joren of the Badlands, his badger and two gnolls - all dead except one gnoll
The Sapphire Squad, rank 5, 2 human fighters and a blue humanoid called Korush of Sapphire - former surrendered, latter unconscious from subdual damage

Gladiatorial Championships:

23rd Rest day (I hope we can get word to the Crooked House about extending our rent!)
24th 2nd round 2-team fight, 5000 gp purse
25th 3rd round 2-team fight or 1-team vs mighty beast called "Mad Tooth", 10000 gp purse
26th 4th round 2-team fight, 20000 gp purse

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
Champion of the Free City
Distraught friend of Corvan Zirzadin
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Location: Hamilton

PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:19 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #43 Underlying ulterior motives Reply with quote

22nd Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, Greyhawk Arena

Dearest Allustan

After our great battle and huge loss, I don't remember much of what we did in the Caenopy.

We discovered we could send messages and order things from Maldin & Elenderi's Magic Shop. I promptly ordered a replacement Cure Moderate Wounds potion for Will, and placed a half-order for one of the neat backpacks that I heard Ragnor had ordered. I'm sure they know I'm good for the rest of the money. I can't have my little brother having stuff that I don't have.

Will talked to the guards about Pitchblade. The guards mentioned that the dwarves sunder their opponent's weapons, then beat on them until they surrender. I can't help but think that there must be more to these dwarves than meets the eye.

23rd Day of Planting

It was all a blur until breakfast. I hadn't slept well overnight: I kept running over our last battle in my mind, thinking how the outcome might have been different if I'd cast Scorching Ray twice in succession, or the Fireball earlier.

Corvan arrived all cheery with glowing eyes and floating above the ground. He said that "Pelor has blessed me and sent me back for our unfinished business: to defeat the Age of Worms" or words to that effect.

After we had collected our jaws from the ground we reflected on the profound miracle that was Corvan Zirzadin.Well, if that isn't divine approval of what we're doing, I don't know what is. Corvan also said he has this recurring nightmares about the Age of Worms, and highly-placed priests of Pelor have been having similar nocturnal experiences.

Corvan healed Jolan with a lay on hands, although the effort seemed to take quite a bit out of Corvan. Ragnor went off to heal his bison.

I bet another 901 gp, the remainder of my funds, for us winning the next round of the Championship. Oh, the gambling bug bites deep!

Ekaym showed up, full of condolences for our recent loss, but fortunately he saw Corvan alive and well before embarrassing himself completely. He was warmly welcomed as he brought with him a Cure Moderate Wounds potion for each of us, and two lots of diamond dust for my Stoneskin spell. What a lovely message service the arena provides!

We sat together in our private room in the Caenopy and Ekaym confessed that he had an ulterior motive in sponsoring us for the Championships. His sister, Lehaka, was the lover of Loris Raknian, the Arena owner, for some time up until last year when she mysteriously vanished. Loris claimed she simply left him but Ekaym is certain that this is not true. Ekaym has searched high and low in Greyhawk for his sister, using both mundane and magical means - but has been unable to penetrate Loris' palace or the Arena understructure. Ekaym wanted our help in finding out the fate of his sister.

Loris is a former gladiator who bought the arena 12 years ago. He is well-loved by the citizens of Greyhawk, and surrounds himself with guards, and is very wealthy and powerful. We agreed to help Ekaym in his quest, but he needed to bring more Cure Moderate Wounds potions tomorrow in case our explorations today jeopardise our on-going participation in the Championships. Without this participation, we cannot continue to search the Arena understructure.

After exploring the Caenopy a little, we found ourselves in a natural cavern called Titan's Tower. The centerpiece of the cavern is a 10' high alabaster statue of a giant with a mattock (a big hammer). In a small antechamber off the main area the Draconic Brood were having a meditation session. We left them to it. We manually searched the place but the only thing of interest was the large pool of water in the cavern that fed into the Caenopy proper as a stream. The part of the pool we were interested in was 6' deep and 20' wide with a 1 1/2 foot plug in the bottom.

While I spent 10 minutes casting Clairvoyance to look behind the plug, someone got some rope. I saw a natural passageway extending beyond the plug, and a human femur bone broken in half.

Jolan pulled the plug, and the water gushed down the hole. Fortunately the pool didn't seem to fill up again due to the inlet and outlet holes being too close together. In any case, we hid the plug so we wouldn't be cut off if we needed to come back in a hurry.

We descended down a natural passageway - albeit it was a tight squeeze through the plug hole! The passageway smelt of rotting flesh. We entered another natural chamber, and in it were five wizened humanoids.

23rd Rest day, hah! Oops, we forgot to get word to the Crooked House about extending our rent!
24th 2nd round 2-team fight, 5000 gp purse
25th 3rd round 2-team fight or 1-team vs mighty beast called "Mad Tooth", 10000 gp purse
26th 4th round 2-team fight, 20000 gp purse

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:19 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #44 Oozes and undead Reply with quote

23rd Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, deep below the Greyhawk Arena

Dearest Allustan

We immediately attacked the obvious undead - the stench was incredible, and we identified them as ghasts. Corvan took some damage, but we overcame the first group relatively easily. I dispatched one single-handedly with a salvo of Maximised Magic Missiles. Will demonstrated a particularly effective accuracy with his arrows against them - eye or head shots being the most common.

Corvan pressed ahead, and attracted more ghasts, but we quickly dispatched these as well. I was throwing daggers to no avail, reserving my magic for later encounters. It pains me to say this, but I must investigate a more effective magical means of contributing to combat. Once I exhaust my spells, what can I do for the party?

The ghast chamber had a dressed column with some designs on it. I identified these designs as being associated with cults of the dead. Charming place.

There were two exits out of the chamber. We walked cautiously down a narrow twisting natural corridor, and soon spotted another three ghasts eating something on the ground near an underground stream.

Ragnor gestured and suddenly a vertical column of fire roared out of the ground, staggering at least one of the ghasts. I hope I can learn that spell from him! It was all over quickly for the three evil undead, Will again demonstrating excellent archery against the noisome creatures.

The ghasts might have been once human, possibly one a half-orc, half-elf, but they possessed no other identification. They were making a meal of a poor human baby - but the baby appeared to have had its throat cut. Corvan insisted we take the pathetic corpse with us, which saved me the diplomatic hassle of convincing the others that it was the right thing to do. Unfortunately we are also ill-equipped to deal with corpse recovery, and I eventually offered one of my sacks to carry the remains in, so it could be placed in the Bag of Holding.

While I would have quite happily continued down the corridor, slaying more undead, Will mentioned that he believed we were moving away from the arena. We agreed it was probably best to focus on our primary goal, and returned to the ghast chamber, and went the other way.

This way lead to a stream and pool and a dead end. I spent 10 minutes casting Arcane Eye - one of my newest spells, and sent it up the stream. We could obviously walk upstream, it was only a few feet deep, and it lead into a large chamber that was clear of undead.

Ragnor turned into an otter for some reason, possibly to do with a fetish for fur. He could still cast spells in this form. It was all I could do to stop laughing when I saw this.

After sloshing upstream for a short distance, we entered a large circular chamber. Corvan and Jolan made for the two small islands in the middle, while we followed. Then we were attacked!

Blobs of ooze descended from the ceiling and tried to engulf us. Corvan and Jolan were first attacked - and when they struck their oozes, they had no effect, and merely split the creature into two!

I concentrated multiple Scorching Rays on one ooze, and even succeeded in making it retreat from the fire, but it took a good six rays to destroy the thing! While doing so I almost got engulfed by one of the things, but they move so slowly I was able to retreat! Ragnor kept summoning fire elementals to burn the ones still on the roof.

Everyone retreated to the chamber entrance. There was a nasty moment when Will, trying out his Frost axe, split another ooze right in front of me - it almost had me but I ran away out of its acidic clutches. Corvan started using his flail on the things and the oozes didn't like it. Jolan got out his flail and Will his staff, and together with the fire elementals we destroyed the remaining oozes.

23rd Rest day, hah! Oops, we forgot to get word to the Crooked House about extending our rent!
24th 2nd round 2-team fight, 5000 gp purse
25th 3rd round 2-team fight or 1-team vs mighty beast called "Mad Tooth", 10000 gp purse
26th 4th round 2-team fight, 20000 gp purse

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 6:20 pm    Post subject: Letter to beloved Mentor #45 more Spawn of Kyuss! Reply with quote

23rd Day of Planting
Free City of Greyhawk, deep below the Greyhawk Arena

Dearest Allustan

Searching the ooze chamber revealed only one reasonable exit: a narrow circular hole in the roof leading some 15' high.

After a brief discussion, Corvan borrowed Jolan's Ring of Feather Fall - which Jolan wasn't wearing as he had a Ring of Protection and a Ring of Spell Storing. Using our extremely useful Rope of Climbing combined with grapple hook Corvan and Will made a slow but eventually successful climb into a small 15' diameter circular chamber.

Unfortunately they were immediately attacked by several Spawn of Kyuss! The two brave adventurers both jumped back down the hole into our surprised midst quicker than we could say "Ebon Aspect"!

After further, lengthy discussion, I Polymorphed Corvan and Jolan into rats, Ragnor followed using his druid ability to wild shape, and the three of them scuttled back up the rope and secured the chamber. Then Will and I climbed slowly up the rope - I wasn't very good - and we both managed to get up the rope without alerting the Spawn. We could hear them in the darkness nearby. The Spawn might be smarter than zombies, but it was good to see they are still pretty stupid.

The Spawn were in an adjacent chamber with three coffins in it. Rat Ragnor cast Burning Sphere on the nearest Spawn while Corvan and Jolan returned to normal form. Both had to retreat from worm infestations, and it looked bad for us.

Then Will let loose with his arrows! He took down the Spawn roasting in the Burning Sphere, and quickly dealt to the other two! Head and eye shots all! Ragnor immolated the remains.

Corvan had a nasty time with his worm infestation - he missed squishing his Kyuss worm when it landed on his armour, and it started to burrow through his skin! However, he called upon Pelor to remove any maladies or illness - and the worm died. Remove Disease is effective against the worms!

The coffins were empty, and we suspected we had just eliminated their former occupants. The chamber had an exit which lead to two corridors, one ending in a door with an obvious light source in it, the other to some sort of water source.

Corvan burst through the door into the lit room with weapon in hand, and we immediately found ourselves in mortal combat with half a dozen Spawn of Kyuss and a skeletal creature with purplish tentacles!

Corvan called upon Pelor again and managed to turn four of the Spawn, but Jolan was blocking the doorway fighting the Mohrg. I assisted Jolan with a salvo of Magic Missiles and Will released his deadly arrows, although Will had a harder time trying to avoid hitting my brother. Then I fired one single Magic Missile from my wand and the Mohrg fell down! The Mohrg's tongue paralyses its victims so it was just as bad as the Spawn.

Ragnor was using his Call Lightning to good effect, even though he was still a rat.

Corvan and Jolan smashed the Spawn attacking Corvan but Jolan got some worms on him for his efforts. Fortunately Jolan was able to slap them dead. We turned out attention to the four Spawn cowering in the far side of the room and destroyed them. Corvan's Spawn of Kyuss reminded us that we needed to burn or dismember the bodies of fallen Spawn by getting up again and trying to attack us. I used Burning Hands on two corpses and Jolan made good use of his trident.

The room was obviously once a library, with large bookcases and everything in ruin. At one end there was old ruined machinery which we should examine later when we have time.

Corvan seemed very interested in the double doors leading from the room, and it turned out that one of the Spawn ran from the room when Corvan and Jolan burst in! Visions of our debacle in the Temple of Hextor rose again in my mind. We need to secure the exits when we attack or we're just setting ourselves up for grief later on!

With time of the essence, we left through the double doors towards another pair of half-open double doors, the chamber beyond lit by an unpleasant green light. Before we could reach the doors, a fiery red monstrously large scorpion burst through them and attacked us!

Your devoted student


Anlan Evant
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