Campaign of the Month: May 2008

Dragonhunter Cronicles

Of Liches and Dreams

“The world is at a tipping point. You must grow stronger and confront the evil that threatens. Seek the ancient serpent in the Stone of Heart’s Water. Seek the power of the blood at the peak of ice. Seek the one that is many beyond the ruins of greatness.” -Message in the Dream

The adventurers made their way up the mountain on the trail of the necromancer, Kindar. They caught up with him at a small cave. After hacking their way through a number of zombies they found Kindar at the back of the cave, ready for them behind a line zombies. With the zombies to slow our heroes down it was clear that Kindar could use his earth magic to escape well before they could kill him. Instead of forcing Kindar to flee they chose to try talking him down. Kindar claimed that he was studying necromancy so that he could destroy the Scourge. The first step of his plan was to perform a ritual that would grant him great power over the dead. Through a series of negotiations, Lord Rheoban managed to convince Kindar to give them first a copy of the ritual and then the actual book of necromantic lore that he had been studying. Kindar also agreed to bring the crystal, formerly part of the seal on the demon of Millkeep, back to the cave after he finished the ritual. With this agreed upon, the heroes left, allowing Kindar and his remaining zombies to escape.

The heroes immediately traveled back to Eriley to figure out where the necromancer would be performing his ritual. Looking over the tome of necromancy they saw that the ritual needed to be performed in the Tomb of King Drath. A local bard said he knew where the tomb was and agreed to help them find it. So in the dead of night, they hurried back up the mountain, but in the darkness they were unable to locate the tomb. With no other options they waited for morning. While they waited, Lord Felix, Lord Rheoban and Rayn studied the tome of necromancy (renamed the Book of Treason) hoping to gain some insight into how they too could become necromancers.

In the morning they found the Tomb of King Drath, an ancient king known for advancing the arcane arts. In the entry chamber they found several empty coffins. As they approached the main burial room they readied themselves to fight what was certainly a large pack of undead. However, when they opened the doors to the main room they found it mostly empty. At the far end was a simple stone throne, in the middle a pedestal with a magic orb. Around the pedestal was the arcane circle needed for the necromantic ritual. Lying next to the pedestal was the body of Kindar, dessicated and thoroughly dead. In a corner was Kindar’s backpack and his copy of the ritual. Of the zombies, King Drath and the crystal from Millkeep there was no sign. Before leaving the tomb they dismembered Kindar’s corpse and took the pieces with them.

The heroes returned once more to Eriley to send a message, about Kindar and a strange dream they had, back to the Academy and decide what to do next. Kindar had said that he planned to start his destruction of the Scourge in Old Allar so they decided to head there. They headed to New Allar to prepare for the journey. While in new Allar, Lord Felix, Lord Rheoban, and Rayn continued their study of the Book of Treason. Lord Felix was especially studious managing to gain an academic understanding of the basic principles of necromancy. However, when they woke up the next morning, they found that the book was gone.

While in New Allar they recieved a letter from the Academy. It was a simple order for them to return to Haven and report to Grand Magus Alain. Before leaving they made a quick check of the local rumors, in case word of a ancient skeleton and a dozen zombies were around. No one had heard of any undead, but they had heard of unrest in several town. Peasants all over the realm were outraged by the heinous and unprovoked brutality of the Defenders in the Massacre of Prylin.

When they arrived at Haven, the party immediately returned to the Academy. However, after a brief wait at the gates, the Grand Magus’s assistant came out to tell them that now was not a good time and they should return tomorrow morning. Instead they spent the day investigating the strange dream they had had. First they went to see if they could get a meeting with Jura, the elemental Primarch of water. They went to Jura’s shrine and spoke with its servants, telling them about the dream and their desire to speak with Jura about it. The Servants told them that the party would need permission to speak with Jura, but the message would be relayed. Now waiting on two meetings, the party went to the Library to do some studying on their own. As nobility, Lord Rheoban and Lord Felix were allowed into the public section of the Library and Tacoma got a meeting with an old friend, Sage Rosemary, but the others were turned away by the Keepers of the Tomes. Tacoma convinced Sage Rosemary to investigate their cryptic dream, but Lord Rheoban and Lord Felix found nothing helpful in the multitude of ancient books.

The next day the adventurers once again approached the Academy and were once again met by Alain’s assistant. However, this time he brought them inside to a small conference room. A few minutes later, Grand Magus Alain entered. He first questioned them about this dream they had had. Then he asked for their report on what had happened with Kindar. He then thanked them for their assistance and told them that the Millkeep demon, Kindar and Drath were Academy buisness and they need no longer worry themselves about it. When the party asked about their dream, Alain said he could not tell them anything about the “ancient serpent”, but gave a vague idea what the other parts might mean. It was clear that he wasn’t telling them everything, but there was nothing they could do about it. The party then returned the items from the Millkeep mages as well as the magic orb they found in the tomb of King Drath. Alain’s assistant gave Kane the book about dragons with instructions to have it back within a week, then escorted them out of the building.

After reporting to the Grand Magus, the party headed back to the Shrine of Jura to see if they could get an audience with the Primarch. The Servants greeted them and confirmed that they could speak with Jura. They were led deeper underground to a mighty river, rushing under the city. From the rushing waters rose a large face, the water elemental Jura. The party first asked what Grand Magus Alain wasn’t telling them, to which Jura replied “That which he is not allowed to tell.” When they asked about the ‘ancient serpent’, Jura confirmed that it knew what it referred to, but said it “is not my place to tell.” Jura did refer to the ancient serpent as a ‘she’ and when the party offered to perform a service, Jura agreed to tell them about it, after the service was complete. Unfortunately, Jura did not have a service in mind at the time, so it said that a Servant would be sent to them when there was a task. Though the party asked several more questions, they got little new information. However, when they asked about New Allar, Jura became visibly agitated.

After their meeting with Jura, the party headed back into the city to try and figure out what to do next. As they were settling in, they received messages bearing a green seal of a lion and a sword. The messages said:

Congratulations on your work in Prylin. It would be my pleasure if you and your friends could join me for dinner tonight.

Sincerely,

Commander Matrius

Comments

Nota Bene: The heroes payed the bard two gold pieces for his services on such prompt notice. The cost was split between Tacoma and Kain, but as the latter was a bit “out of it” at the time, it may be renegotiated later.

Also, I think it may be useful to put more details about the dream up here somewhere, particularly considering the plethora of eidetic memory in the party (but not the players). That could be done by the GM or by whoever has the handout.

Of Liches and Dreams
 

Full Dream:

You sleep and dream. You are seated on the floor of an inn. In front of you the fireplace blazes merrily. Seated around you are your companions. An old man with a long beard, his hair light grey, sits in a simple rocking chair. He smiles kindly down at you. You feel at peace. There is no malice here. “You have done well,” The old man says, “but there is much to be done. The world is at a tipping point. You must grow stronger and confront the evil that threatens. Seek the ancient serpent in the Stone of Heart’s Water. Seek the power of the blood at the peak of ice. Seek the one that is many beyond the ruins of greatness.” The old man smiles at you once more and you slowly wake up, fully rested, the next morning.

Lord Rheoban also said that the man in the dream was probably not actually a man and had glowing red eyes. He suspects it was a hellhound.

I’m always surprised at how long these things end up being. Can anyone recall any other questions asked of Alain or Jura?

Of Liches and Dreams
 

Jura mentioned that the emissary who would be sent to us was not an Elemental Servant, but apparently a servant of “her.”

Of Liches and Dreams
 

I think that is a bit of misinterpretation. Jura said that it would send a Servant when it had a task for you. However, if ‘she’ wanted to contact you, ‘she’ would send one of her emissaries. I probably wasn’t clear enough on that last Friday.

Of Liches and Dreams
Geech

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