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Karthan 01 - Arrival
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PostPosted: Sun May 25, 2008 11:18 am    Post subject: K28. The Dark Tower Reply with quote

K28. 1Guiaranor03 – The Dark Tower

Khios mused over Gwynraell’s words Why is he here and why Mharfaell? Why indeed young ranger. One day you may ask another question…why so soon. It is all a matter of time. He looked at the blue globe hovering near the window. So far they have not detected the change in fates of the three in the encampment. This is interesting…on this world there is no god of time. On others there are and from there I learned how time could be used.

He glanced at the Book. “Nothing I suppose.” The Book, open was recording events in the empire as it transpired. But it was silent on this matter. “So be it. I may know them by name…know their location for the moment but cannot do anything to influence them. Even now…Mharfaell is all I have. Two from one, one good…one evil. How many powers did this upset. How many are in my situation. I am not the only one, it seems that one must become nothing more than a witness…providing that lore can be gained.”

Hearing movement behind him he knew his apprentice, Khalanar had entered the room. Khios smiled. I knew you were coming…such was this new power…time. But it is still limited.. “You are going to speak about their delay.”
“Yes Master. It took two further teleport spells for Rhan and his companions to arrive at the location.”
“And why did it take two further spells?”
“We had to avoid two locations where the essence had become unpredictable.”
“The ebb and flow of the essence is not one to be taken lightly. You have done well Khalanar. There is but one other small matter to deal with. You were here, 12 days hence when Rhan was briefed on his task. 8 days later he had recruited his minions and you meet them for their final briefing. You know what this means.”
Khalanar nodded. “I understand. I must not bear witness to the next 20 days.”
Khios smiled. “Excellent. You are learning.” With that he looked at his apprentice and Khalanar suddenly collapsed to the floor. The Dark Sorcerer concentrated and removed all memories of the task from Khalanar’s mind. Then at his command, two air elementals lifted the body and removed it, taking Khalanar back to his chambers. “He will remain there for the next 20 days.”

As the unconscious body of Khalanar was removed Khios looked across at the book. There was an entry…one word “Entropy” Yes...I expected that. It comes full is all about the communication.

Last edited by vampyre on Fri May 30, 2008 4:19 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 2:48 pm    Post subject: K29 - hunting lodge - by day Reply with quote

K29. 1Guiaranor03 – The Hunting Lodge – by day

Mak did not sleep well. The long nights here…he awoke twice, hearing movement from the rangers and familiars as they patrolled the encampment. But shortly afterwards he was asleep again.
“Not even the sleep spells are working on him...he falls to sleep, but not the full night.” One of the beastmasters remarked from nearby.
“They should.” Myandwyr returned. “Why not on him?"
"Perhaps it is because of the land he comes from. The southern continent. Perhaps their magic is different.”
“Perhaps.” Myandwyr nodded. He was not convinced. He had met people from foreign lands before…dark skinned warriors from Labalna and the olive skinned people of Arkulan. They had visited the Elder Wilds as guests of the Forresters Guild 10 years ago, and were welcomed and many stories of myth and legend were exchanged. They had no problems sleeping the night. They were not amazed by the size of the forest or how small they felt being in the Elder Wilds. Perhaps their land was desert…

Towards daylight bird familiars reported no movement from the lodge. Awakening everyone, including Mak, they enjoyed a heart beef broth then the encampment was cleared before they moved towards the lodge at a lively pace. Reaching the clearing before the lodge, Mak could see even in the bright sunlight, the lodge looked shadowed, shrouded in grey…perhaps a distinction of its evil taint. They have not long to wait before Kam emerges…in human form, his body covered in foul yellow white substance. Kam is fully aware of what had happened…

“Perhaps you should speak with him.” Myandwyr suggested to Mak. “He may favour counsel with you rather than us.” Mak does not see the rangers notching their bows. Mak steps out and approaches Kam. “Where did you go last night. Are you well? Did you know you caused trouble last night.”
Kam looks at Mak. “What’s it to you. You have found me alive haven’tn you. So you pretty little self has come to no harm” Kam could see near the forest’s edge…a number of familiar large animals eyeing him, including 8 panthers.

Kam smelled of the foulest of odors. “Man, you stink.” Mak states. “Maybe you should get cleaned up or something. What have you been doing to get in such a state? Why did you have to leave like that.”

Kam replied: "I left because I knew something was happening and leaving was the thing he knew was good, because he thought leaving would save people. They'd kill me and wouldn't understand. I was not acknowedging the moons like the werewolves bsck home. Hunger frenzy. spirits got restless. I fled. something I can't remember. I wanted to preserve myself and be free of confinement."

Mak looked confused and then said "I think I understand what you're saying, but you should know that I find this very troubling. The others are uncomfortable with your disappearance and I fear that will make things awkward for the two of us. Now get yourself cleaned up and join us. We should get out of here."

Kam says “I don’t care what anyone else thinks. I did what I wanted to. So what if I found myself here. At least no one else got hurt by me or my actions.”

Kam remembers not perhaps did anyone escape him…the two knights…their bodies were nearby. But of course, no one was hurt at the Gathering Hurt…a small twist on the truth.
Mak says. “Come on the others are waiting…clean yourself up. Lets go.”
“Oh sure brother I would love to clean myself. But with what…you will have to take me back as I am. Maybe someone will give me a sponge bath when I get back, at one of Mharfaell’s finest establishments.”

Mak knew enough of Mharfaell to know there were NO fine establishments…of what Kam was thinking. Just the inn. He returns to Mywandwyr and states that Kam will clean up as best as he can and will get some clothes then returning to Kam he says. “You have half an hour to get ready . You can’t return like that.”
Kam goes in begrudgingly, swearing under his breath.

Mak returns to the others. Myandwyr moves off to the forest and returns informing Mak that the spirits here saw Azgeyr leave with a box. “Olyia has also informed these same Azgeyr went to the valley where the battle took place and used what could be a key of some kind to open a foundation stone. We were not aware of these stones. The battle took place on a carpet of thick weeds, that must have been disturbed during the combat, revealing the foundations of a building of some kind. Also…there are two dead knights of the empire nearby.” He turns to some of his people. “Prepare them for the return to the village.”
“Did the spirits say anything about the Azgeyr at the foundation. Did they stay there after gaining entry?”
“They are still there, encamped.”
“How many?”
“I believe six.”
“Is that a typical number to travel around…typical size of their warband.”
“No.” Myandwyr. “They travel in groups of 9, 18 or 27. Any derivative of 9 is considered a number of evil and Darkness Claw likes to exploit such symbology in our mythos.”
“So they are the servants of Darkness Claw?”
“Yes they are. And remember, unlike those who serve Kharagh…they lack the taint of chaos…therefore more intelligent and resolved. Olyia last reported that 3 descended into the opening and 3 remained on guard.”
“I am quite interested in what is happening there and I will take Kam and have a look at this place together. We can report back what we find. Because where I come from, I find places like that very interesting.”
“And Kam?” Myandwyr inquires.
“Oh he finds places like that interesting too.”
Myandwyr nods. “Then we will help equip you.”

Kam enters the lodge and finding clothing and a bath that produces cold water…he baths using coarse soap he find in a cupboard. It takes longer than he thought to remove the blood of the worm…and once done he cleans his pack. They will find the bodies of the knights soon enough.

The two bodies are retrieved in cloth and are taken by 3 rangers and 2 large bears back to Mharfaell.
“Who were they.” Mak asks.
“We do not know.” Myandwyr answers. “They are knights…or perhaps knight errants. I hope the representatives of Coppertown are arriving this day and could aid in their identity. Their families will have to be informed.” To him that was a duty. Myandwyr hunts with two rangers and returns with fresh kills and they are cut and prepared for Mak and Kam. Fresh food for two days with herbs to brew a rich broth. “Olyia stream can provide water”. The meat along with bread and fruit is packed into a special leather backpack. Myandwyr explains that these packs have simple preservation spell and a cold spell to keep the meat fresh. “The meat will remain fresh for 5 days at least.”

Kam returns to see two wrapped bodies being carried away on the backs of bears. They have found them. He is now wearing dark brown studded leather breeches and jacket. He smelled tolerable. Myandwyr then gives Mak two green “oil stones”.
“What are these for?” Mak asks.
“Cleans the body.” Myandwyr replies smiling. He also gives each of them 20 Mirella berries (heals 10HP immediately) and presents Mak with an ornately carved longknife (+3 1d8+4 dam, 8th lvl ranger spell Lesser Traps, duration 2/day 8PP (Power Points) required. Lesser Trap – Caster can construct a minor outdoor trap within 1 rnd: trap can be deliver up to a B critical hit to any one person (e.g. a shallow spike pit, a snare that throws victim into tree trunk etc) size 10ft radius or less. “I wish you…both…well on your travels. Let us hope you return safety with knowledge that will aid your quest…for it now begins.”

It is now mid morning. The others depart and Myandwyr acknowledges both with a nod. “May your travels be enlightening.”
“We will see you in due course.” Mak returns.
He nods. “We will keep watch over the valley, but it is you both that must take the course. When you return to Mharfaell, we will speak again.” He nods and departs, following the others, his familiars flanking him.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 7:52 pm    Post subject: K30 Mharfaell Reply with quote

K30. 1Guiaranor03 – Mharfaell

Tanek and Dettar took the road west, passing a number of travelers heading east to Wynfril. They nodded and waved when greeted…the courtesy thing is always good for the look.
“Do you think we will find them here?” Tanek asks.
“Do you wish to doubt Rhan?”
“No…bloody forest…I wish for home where the pickings are greater.”
“Hmm…I don’t think we will find anything of value among this lot…they are the peasant folk to be sure.” Dettar replied. “But we are being paid, we are. Lets keep our fingers to ourselves…otherwise Rhan may remove them.”
Tanek grunts. “Thanks for the reminder.”

They entered Mharfaell to the noise of a busy market and is approached by a young strongly built man, armed with a bow and longword…wearing the trappings of a ranger. “Greetings strangers and welcome to Mharfaell. I am Gwynraell, ranger of Mharfaell, have you visited here before?”
“No.” Tanek replied. “Ah…we are seeking lodgings for the night…do you have an inn here.”
Dettar took in the view…above him there were large buildings on landings in the trees and he could see rangers patrolling, bows at the ready.
“Of course…the Redwood Inn.” Gwynraell. “Please…allow me to show the way.”
“Can we re supply there?” Dettar asked.
“Yes. Are you travelling further?” Gwynraell asked.
“Yeah sort of…have a paying client who may wish to undertake a hunt in this region. We are here to see what is on offer…make sure we don’t ah…upset any local customs, that sort of thing.” Tanek breathed deeply. Hope that sounded convincing.
“I would suggest you speak with Myandwyr…he should be returning later this day. Hunts like that are unusual but have occurred here in the past, providing the rules are obeyed.”
“Sort of figured on that.” Dettar nodded. “That’s why we are here. Any other visitors here…your umm…tree houses are impressive.” They were heading deeper into the village and ahead Dettar could see the inn…typical of what one would expect from the Windrider Trading Company. Their inns and trading posts were well known throughout the empire.
“Thank you. There are always guests here. Today we are being visited by the Count of Copper Town with an entourage.”
Tanek nodded. “Oh well…lets hope there are some Therim at the inn to enjoy an ale with.”

Gwynraell showed them into the expansive inn, with stables and an area set aside for merchant caravans. “If there is anything you need, Bryn Seyanwyr, is the inn keeper here and he will help meet your needs. Enjoy your stay in Mharfaell.”
“Ah…yeah thanks.” Dettar acknowledged.
They entered and booked rooms for the next 3 days and brought ration supplies for uplift on the 3rd day. An hour later Dettar met Tanek in his room and lit a pipe. “Alright…we are here. A meeting has been arranged with Calfourn later this evening. We will need something to pass onto Rhan, that is why we are here.”
“Right…looking for 2 people, outsiders, that look like twins. Should not be hard. The Daeostherim are quite distinctive folk…these two are not. So it should be easier to find them if they are around. And that is what we have to do.”
Tanek nodded. “Lets spend the day acting like curious folk at the market and see what we come up with.”
“Good way to start. But I would be wary about been too curious. These folk are usually suspicious of strangers.”
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2008 3:20 am    Post subject: K31 Mharfaell Reply with quote

K31. 1Guiaranor03 – Mharfaell

Gwynraell looked down from the landing and turned to the Elder, Naiyll Braenwyr. “That is them…there are two others encamped a mile south of here. One of them is a Sorcerer.” The Elder watched as the two, now identified as Tanek and Dettar left the inn and moved towards the market.
“Why are they here?”
“They are looking for Mak and Kam…they spoke about the two that are brothers and strangers to our forest. They were quite talkative when they left the encampment and journeyed here. It can only be them.”
“This Sorcerer concerns me.” Naiyll said quietly. “The servants of the Dark Sorcerer are never to be trusted. They are like two headed Coisn snakes…one head that speaks of itself as true to its form…the other silent concealing its true purpose and intention. Dark and evil are the Sorcerers…and thus all servants of Khios.”
“What do you suggest we do Elder?”
“We can do nothing against the Sorcerer, for he is a citizen of the empire. He is breaking no law by entering our forest. However, he can be watched and I will attend to this personally. To these two who have visited our village…we will welcome them of course, and watch over them very closely.”
Gwynraell nodded respectfully. “And should they ask questions of our guests?”
“Our guests have been here but briefly. They now follow their path. Let our two new arrivals think they are close by…the more we delay their further plans, the better for our guests. Our beloved Niessar would want this.”
“Of course. I tend to forget that Niessar has brought them here. Elder…why are they here?”
“To search for answers.” Naiyll replied. “They are here to do what we cannot…seek the past for the fate of our future.”
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 9:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Silently, Mak and Kam approached and observed the dark hole in the ground under guard by three azgeyr. Calmly they circled and remained concealed in the undergrowth as they drew closer and prepared composite longbows.

Unseen by the azgeyr Mak pointed and Kam pulled pack then impatiently fired. The arrow flew badly an he dropped his bow, cursing. The sound caught at least one guard's attention and in response the cretures fanned out to search the scrub and scattered foliage.

Mak and Kam stayed low and both switched to melee weapons, waiting. Then battle was joined ...
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2008 2:27 pm    Post subject: k32 Forge Valley Reply with quote

K32 Forge Valley

The gorge was familiar to Mak and Kam. There is no evidence that any battle had taken place here. It had been cleansed indeed, bodies removed…blood, weapons…where had the Azgeyr gone?
Mak is respectful and utters a few words of respect to Olyia. Kam doesn’t really care.
“Are we going to find something useful?” Kam asks.
“Yeah…if we can kill the Azgeyr and find out what they are doing there. There might be something we can take for ourselves.”
“Taking stuff is good.” Kam replies.

Mak did not see any sign of Olyia. Climbing the terraced windy gorge was not to difficult providing they were careful to avoid the slimy rocks. The water was shallow and slow moving, the gorge winds to the right then 200 yards further on, to the left. Ahead, sloping up 150yards and 100ft upward, the gorge opened out.
Reaching the top…a small plateau enclosed by rocky crags, covered in thorny scarlet coloured bushes and orange ferns. Smoke is rising just a few hundred yards ahead. On each side the rocky crags look like they have been sculptured…smooth with square angles, like a giant jagged jigsaw puzzle.

Nearing the encampment they stopped in cover within 60 yards and saw 3 Azgeyr on guard in area cleared revealing a circular stone foundation 60ft wide and rubble. Mak remembered this was where the battle took place with the rangers and he could see signs of where the undergrowth had been broken and pushed aside revealing the foundation. The Azgeyr must had completed the excavation themselves. There is an circular opening in the floor of the foundation at its center. Mak and Kam decide to target a single guard with bow fire. Mak hits, but Kam fumbles, misfiring, the arrow catching in the bow, the bow being flung out of his hand, off to the right into the bushes.

Alerted by the cry of pain…the Azgeyr go to cover, into the thick undergrowth to the left of the cleared foundation area. Listening Mak and Kam hears nothing…but the Azgeyr have advanced 8 yrds towards them. Kam ignores his bow and unsheathes his longword. Mak follows Kam’s lead, seeing he is preparing his defence and unsheathes this new longknife, gifted from Myandwyr.
Waiting…two of the Azgeyr move another 8 yrds undetected. A third is heard by Kam on the edge of the clearing…and sees him briefly before disappearing behind another bush…they are moving towards them. Kam realises that one is trying to flank them on the left…and Mak is to his left. Mak and Kam move back on an angle to the right 30 paces and maintain cover and they are coming from ahead and the left. Once in cover, Mak sees another Azgeyr emerging from the opening in the ground. He taps Kam’s shoulder and points to him and Kam just nods.

Waiting…waiting…the Azgeyr that has emerged looks around and seeing their his no guards, shouts an order. It is not answered. He unsheathes a warhammer and searches the encampment area then widens his search.

Mak and Kam hear movement to the left and both see an Azgeyr passing by them…just a few feet away. Kam strikes the nearest foe, hitting its back and Mak slashes its tendons…effectively losing use of its leg. It collapses to the ground and it is dead after they both strike him. The other two, hearing the combat, emerge charging at them, both armed with the jagged edged longswords…similar to Kam’s. They are surprised to see that one of these two humans…both of whom look alike, has one THEIR weapons…and is prepared to use it against them!!! Kam strikes his foe…and is struck back. His second attack sees him fumble, his feet caught in vines and loses grip of his weapon…then his opponent rips the tendons into his leg and he is stunned.

Mak, struck in the chest, suffers bleeding damage, which is neutralised by his Ring of Sustenance and magical quality of the armour that he brought through from Eberron. He parries next two attacks successfully. Leave it, he thinks. Kam’s right leg has just being slashed by a critical blow…he needs to help but now is facing two. Mak parries a second attack and the Azgyer try to take the advantage but the bracken hinders their attacks and they miss. The 3rd Azgeyr wades into the attack targeting. Mak squares off against two in the thick underbrush. The Azgeyr opponent criticals against Kam…his neck is slashed, unable to attack. Though weakened he stands his ground and Mak facing two sees bracken vines beginning to entangle the feet and arms of his two foes. They have not noticed…Mak criticals the wounded Azgeyr and severs his weapon hand, the other azgeyr attacks striking Mak then the thorny bracken branches wrapped around them, the thorns ripping into their armour and the more the azgeyr struggle the more damage the thorns are doing…the tighter the branches are wrapping around them.

"Is this the work of Olyia?", Mak wonders. "I recall that the last time we fought near these ruins, she made rocks slippery and tripped our foes. If this is her doing then I am most grateful."

Mak presses home his attack and misses. Kam again is struck by a critical blow by his foe, striking his left calf muscle.
Mak sees the azgeyr entangled are taking damage from the thorns, ripping through their armour and flesh. So he decides to aid his “brother” and slays the Azgeyr in a surprise attack. The other two are killed by the thorn bracken branches entwined tightly around them…blood oozing from many wounds. The branches then untangle and move away swiftly into the undergrowth and the two Azgeyr, now lifeless, fall to the ground dead, their armoured bodies ripped apart by the thorns.

Mak gives thanks to Olyia and in return both he and Kam are fully healed. He thanks her again for the blessing. The healing was needed. Not only of the body but the mind and strength too…they are both fully renewed. Even Kam realises that something special had happened, given the damage to his legs. But he does not show it.

They both after rest search the encampment and see bedding for six. There are two more unaccounted for. Backpacks are searched…functional, well laid out, no items of note nor any coinage. Mak notices the encampment is not far from the shallow stream that runs down to the gorge and the area about them is wet and sodden underfoot. They approach the opening in the excavated area of the clearing.
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