Scales of War

Descent into Rivenroar
The Gob that Got Away
Freeday, 14 Reaping, 1468 CY

The group awoke, muddled from the lingering sulfur fumes, but managed to discover two new allies without attacking them first: a teenager who reeked to the high heavens named Grymm, and a creepy blind dragonborn by the name of Irjan. Soon after their breakfast of reheated bear, they set off for the ruins of Castle Rivenroar to see about finding the Brindol’s missing people.

The group arrived around mid-morning and, after avoiding a few goblin patrols that were around the ruins, soon found stairs descending into the ruins. Irjan led the way into the darkness, and did not realize later that there was light flickering at the bottom of the long descent. Skien was beside the blind dragonborn, whether out of lack of trust or eagerness was uncertain. After all, he had just remembered a bit about Castle Rivenroar’s history after seeing the remains of a crest dedicating the castle to the Raven Queen. (This information came to him slowly over the course of the day as he continued to see little hints in different areas.)

At the base of the stairs, a quartet of hobgoblins was waiting, with two goblins guarding the door behind them. There were three sets of doors, and two burning braziers that filled the room with light. They charged forward before anyone could react, and bottled the adventurers up in the stairwell. Irjan flailed about with his stick, Diony fired his crossbow into the fray, Tanner blasted away at the goblins with his magic missiles, and Skein wrestled with his polearm to get it positioned for a decent strike. Meanwhile, fire arched between the two braziers in an impressive display that Irjan could feel even from thirty feet away.

Aviella and That Bitch remained stuck at the back until finally a breakthrough was made. With Irjan and Skein down, and Grymm looking beat up, Aviella stepped forward and unleashed a wave of fire on the hobgoblins that staggered them all. The goblins, disturbed that their hobgoblin comrades were falling, began to make a run for it. Tanner managed to catch one of them, and would have followed as they ran out of the west doors if he hadn’t seen another group of hobgoblins in the next room.

Everyone was limping after that fight—except Tanner because he’s a true hero—and the group barricaded the doors so that they could take a quick breather before facing the next room of hobs. Skein laid down several gallons of pitch to barricade to doors that didn’t have braziers in the way while everyone else was bandaging up and recovering. The others couldn’t protest when it was already done.

The group tried to form a plan for the hobgoblins in the next room, and wanted to try to lure them into the first room if possible. When they opened the doors, the braziers started their movement again (slightly offset from the group physically moving them), and the found the enemy was not waiting inside the door. Instead, they had waited in the next room—their living quarters—and stayed on the alert. Once again, the hobgoblins phalanx blocked the group into the corridor, and whatever plan they had for the pitch didn’t work out—though the pitch by the north doors did explode quite loudly as fire arched over it.

Another tough battle, and Skein charged after the escaping goblins, narrowly avoiding falling into a pit. One of them still escaped, but he managed to take the other one down. After taking a breather, they checked beyond the other set of doors, and hear magic crackling from down the hall. When they turned the corner, they saw the flickering image of another world across the expanse of the far wall:UmbraforgeTanner and Skein tried to figure out what sort of place this was, and ultimately determined that it was likely in the Shadowfell, and might be the famed Umbraforge where a river of lava flows through the center of the city itself. As they examined the portal, a clear, oozing jelly squelched out of the portal ready to attack. The group rallied quickly and took down the jelly before it could do much harm—though Irjan got a little burned by acid. Despite looking worse for wear, he insisted on the group continuing, and continue they did.

Around another corner, a goblin who must have heard the commotion of the fight with the jelly opened a door on the other side of the crypt and darted away. Two creatures made out of magma appeared in the room, guardians of some kind. They, too, bottled the group up in the corridor, but they weren’t as tough as the hobgoblin phalanx. The party made short work of the magma creatures as the goblins escaped around the corner and up some stairs. As everyone looked around, Skein realized that the bodies interned in this crypt used burial rituals unfamiliar to him. Moreover, they certainly bore elements that could only come from an evil goddess. Once he realized that, the group quickly searched through the corpses and skeletons, finding some gold, residuum, and a small crossbow with faintly glowing flames carved into the stock.

Worn out from multiple fights, the group backtracked to find a suitable place to rest. Some sulfur fumes were wafting under the door from the entry chamber, so they fortified the room that reeked of goblin (it still didn’t cover the aroma wafting from Grymm), and took a rest in there. It was a rough sleep, but nothing came and bothered them—that they noticed.

They continued on after their sleep, and though they were inside with no windows, Irjan and That Bitch judged it to be about evening time. In the crypt, they examined the door that had summoned the magma creatures, and realized that they could quickly pass through one at a time without triggering the summoning magic. They did so, and soon made their way down another flight of stairs to a room that smelled of decay and human excrement. A dignified gentleman with graying hair was in one of the jail cells (an ancient skeleton was in the other) and he adjusted his slightly-cracked monocle as he realized these weren’t his captors.

“I tried to break the bars,” he commented, “but my strength just isn’t what it used to be.” Grymm attempted to bend the bars himself, but had to allow Diony to step in with his set of lock picks. The freed captive nodded his thanks, and was rather talkative and encouraging of slaying all goblins and hobgoblins on sight. Turns out Sertanian—for that was the man’s name—was a foot soldier in the war against the Red Hand of Doom, and he’s ready to take on a while goblin horde. From behind a group of capable adventurers, of course. His soldiering skills are a bit rusty.

Firmly agreeing that Sertanian should stand in the back, the group proceeded to explore, and found a set of stairs. Irjan could feel waves of cold air wafting down the stairs, and he and Diony tried to sneak forward to get a view of what might be at the top of the stairs. Unfortunately, their footsteps were too loud, and the goblins who had fled heard and yelped a warning through chattering teeth. Zombies blue-white with frost lumbered down the stairs and froze Diony and Irjan in their tracks. The group had hoped to lure their enemies into the corridor, but they hadn’t anticipated that turn of events. Irjan soon fell unconscious, and Tanner rushed in to grab him and haul him back to safety in the crypt. That Bitch used the power of Moradin to smite them, and Skein just missed when he called upon the Raven Queen to do the same—perhaps the stories they told about the Rivenroar family being punished by the goddess were true.

Though the goblins escaped once again, the zombies were eventually defeated and Irjan awoke from his hypothermia-induced sleep. Though half the party had frostbite that needed tending to, they trudged sluggishly up the stairs to examine the rest of the room—and see if they could guess where the goblins had gone.

On the landing, frozen in a block of ice, they found one of the other prisoners taken from Brindol: Kartenix. The chill in the air was beginning to dissipate, but the ice on Kartenix and on the floor remained solid.

After such a tough fight, the adventurers carefully retreated to the goblin warren where they had rested before. Fortifying it and outfitting Sertanian with some scale armor, a longsword, shield, and a hand crossbow, the group set up their watch schedule.

It wasn’t until the third watch, when Irjan and Diony were awake, that an explosion shook the very walls of the ruins around them. The door to the entry chamber was hot to the touch, and Irjan quickly dissuaded anyone from investigating further. After their rest, the door had cooled. Upon investigation of the entry chamber, they found one of the braziers snuffed out, and the corner where the barrel of pitch had been was little more than rubble. The other brazier burned faintly, a testament to the amount of oxygen consumed by the sulfurous blast.


Death Toll

Kartenix is frozen solid on the landing above where you faced the Chillborn Zombies and the Mage Wight.


New Acquisitions
  • 407 XP to all players, bringing to total to 1053 — Everyone advances to Level 2!
  • Flameburst Hand Crossbow +1: Daily Power (Minor Action) – The next ranged basic attack you make with this weapon before the end of your turn becomes a burst 1 centered on the target. Use your normal attack bonus for the basic attack, but against Reflex. Instead of normal damage, each target hit takes ongoing 5 fire damage (save ends).
  • 250gp
  • 1 gem (worth ~50gp)
  • 100gp worth of residuum
  • Sertanian was found, and is hanging with you to help you spot the missing artifacts.

Character Journals

Click your character’s link below to create your journal entry on a new wiki page:
Diony – Session 2
Skein – Session 2
Tanner – Session 2
Aviella – Session 2
That Bitch – Session 2
Grymm – Session 2
Irjan – Session 2

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Bearly Awake
Breakfast of Champions
Freeday, 14 Reaping, 1468 CY

The cave never quite stopped reeking of sulfur, but at least everyone was dry and alive. Aviella stared into the campfire deep in thought, Skein nursed an arm still pink with scar tissue, Diony finally removed his dark goggles, Tanner excitedly composed tales of his great deeds to come, and That Bitch mourned the loss of his beard. The last two days had changed a lot for everyone in that cave.

Reheated bear was for breakfast, and whether it was the smell of breakfast or the sounds of the camp beginning to stir, two people took notice. A tall, hulking youth made his way toward the cave, battleaxe in hand as he swiped mud from his face. An equally tall, though smaller boned, dragonborn sat on a stump near the cave, tapping the ground with his gnarled staff.

Diony paused mid-bite as he noticed rustling and tapping outside the cave.

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Into the Fire
Skip the Frying Pan
Waterday, 12 Reaping, 1468 CY

The hot day finally ended, and for their own reasons our band of soon-to-be-adventurers ended up in the Antler and Thistle not long after sundown. The free entertainment proved to be a bit of a flop, as the Eloquent Elijah, a gnome with ripped clothing, ranted about being attacked on the road from Talar as he tried to write a song about the experience. Most assumed it was part of an act…and a poor one at that. The patrons were grumbling even more when they learned that Dergen’s XXX Stout had not yet arrived from Overlook: it seems the caravan is a few days overdue.

When Tanner arrived, demanding a free drink for the “scion of Moo’haa,” the barkeep approached the tiefling and asked if he might entertain his clientele with tales of his “mother” and the Diamond League. Though a bit put on the spot, “Roderick” was happy to oblige and told tales of the Beast of Winterhaven that he and his “mother” had defeated together. The crowd was just beginning to settle down when the front doors of the tavern splintered from their hinges and a small band of hobgoblins rushed in and cut down the patrons nearest the door with their swords. The barkeep ducked down behind the bar and other patrons began to take cover (though the three in the back corner continued playing cards—they had 30 gold on the table that had to be won) as some of the stronger individuals did what they could to drive the hobgoblins back.

A young shifter by the name of Skien whipped out his glaive to defend the bar against its attackers. That Bitch also rose from his seat, increasingly angry from lack of the XXX brew and now being attacked. Diony skirted around the tables and chairs, quickly firing off a few quarrels to pick off the hobgoblins one by one. “Roderick” mostly lived up to the name he had made for himself in his tales, taking out two with one blow. Aviella, a most beautiful, if distant, woman rose and watched the occurrences, helping the wounded and frightened patrons to escape through the windows.

Waves of more hobgoblins followed, and a wily goblin made his way through the back door to throw a lit bitumen torch at the barkeep, conking him on the head. He fell amidst the fire, and soon the heat blew up the bar and fire began to spread. Smoke billowed out of the tavern, making it hard to see and harder to breathe, but our heroes managed to defeat the goblins anyway and help the citizens of Brindol organize a bucket brigade. Much of the tavern was severely damaged—and the barkeep suffered a painful and unfortunate end.

Outside the tavern, it seemed that goblins were attacking all across Brindol, and guards arrived soon after to find out what happened. Though they first faced the belligerence of a sober dwarf, Aviella gave a complete and dispassionate report of what happened and healed the guardsmen’s wounds as best she could. A moment later, an ogre lumbered around the corner of the tavern, and lobbed a lit cask of pitch toward the group. Though it was poorly aimed, the sergeant Aviella had been speaking to perished before he could scream, and the survivors of the Antler and Thistle found themselves in a fight again, this time against a full-grown ogre wielding barrels of liquid fire!

Against all odds, the group felled the ogre though the hobgoblins also in the fight made a run for it. More guards ran up from the south, calling for help defending the bridges to the north. The group hurried off before they could catch their breath, but by the time they arrived, the goblins had already retreated across the river.

Tanner, no longer disguised as Roderick, went to check on his family. Aviella also headed south to check on hers. Skein welcomed That Bitch to stay at his humble abode, and Diony stayed the night at the guardhouse, taking his turn watching from the ramparts for further attacks. Though there were a few random attacks through the darkest part of night, all were able to rest well enough.

Earthday, 13 Reaping, 1468 CY

The next day Alys sought out each individual who handled themselves admirably during the goblin attacks, tracking them down quickly and efficiently as she informed them that Councilman Eofrram Troyas wished to meet with them at the ninth bell. All five assembled before the ninth bell had rung, but they were shown immediately into Troyas’ study where they found the half-elf pacing. He spoke with the group at length, taking the measure of each individual, before describing the offer he he had for them. Citizens of Brindol had been taken, and precious treasures from the Great Hall of Valor had also been stolen. Find and return all individuals and items for a reward of 400 gp and all the aid the good people of Brindol could muster. He decided to trust the party, and they set off to do some quick reconnaissance in the city.

Tanner and That Bitch headed over to the stocks where they had permission to interrogate Dave—a hobgoblin captured in the previous days attacks. Through tickling and thick dwarven spit in the eye, Dave spilled the beans…all of them. He even drew a map for how to get to the ruins of Rivenroar where the goblins were mustering. He explained that Sinruth was the leader, and he saw them all as descendants of the Red Hand of Doom. He had ordered the capture of prisoners to be given to the “undead horrors” guarding part of the goblins’ lair.

Meanwhile, Aviella followed Skein and Diony as they checked out Adronsius’ alchemy shop. It seemed there had been a struggle, and the dwarf had been unceremoniously dragged away. Diony analyzed the scene pretty well, putting together miniscule details to form an idea of what happened. Skein looked for supplies, acquiring a number of vials and flasks which he filled with pitch. Aviella wondered if Adronsius had been targeted specifically, but Diony was pretty sure that this was a kidnapping of opportunity, not calculated or meticulously planned. They went to meet up with Tanner and That Bitch at the stocks, but the dwarf had already headed off to a tavern that hadn’t suffered a loss of all its alcohol. Eventually they met up and headed out of town, using the map and the goblin tracks to make their way to the ruins of Castle Rivenroar.

Unfortunately, Diony’s eyes failed them in the brightest part of the day. He had trouble picking out the goblin tracks, and they wandered for a bit before finally finding the path indicated on the map. Several of the group suffered from dehydration and mild heat stroke, but they persevered and continued onward.

They stumbled upon a nest of kruthiks, reptilian critters with toxic tail spikes. Fortunately for everyone, the accuracy of their tail flicks was poor and soon the kruthiks and their young—and even their new hatchlings—fell to the blades, quarrels, and hammer of the party. It was soon after the fight as they tried to reorient themselves that That Bitch realized the map was taking them on a circuitous route, so they weren’t likely to see the goblin’s tracks anymore. The forged onward, making better time as the sun went down and they hiked up into the foothills.

The weather in the hills was different than in the valley surrounding Brindol, and a violent rain storm soon kicked up, sending the group looking for shelter. That Bitch very quickly found a cave, and Skein immediately set up camp inside, building a fire with damp wood and pitch. A small explosion alerted the others who had gone searching in different directions that something was up. They hurried back in time to see the shifter dwarfed by a large bear that swiped out viciously with its rending claws. Without checking the cave for prior or current inhabitants, the group had stumbled upon a hungry cave bear!

Through a series of events that included setting the bear on fire, soaking That Bitch’s beard in pitch (accidentally) and consequently thinning out the dwarf’s whiskers, the group successfully defeated the bear and managed to also put out the fire. Though the stink of sulfuric fumes lingered in the cave for much of the night, they were able to rest there for the night without interruption. A few of the watches thought they heard rustling in the brush outside after the rain had stopped, but nothing came out and attacked, and they never saw anything definitive enough to say it wasn’t just the wind.

The bear had dragged a mauled human into the back of its den, and had eaten much of the man’s pack and arms. A suit of black chainmail was still on the body, mostly intact, its dark links glinting in the firelight. The man’s coin purse had been ripped open, and its contents were scattered across the stone floor.


Death Toll

Antler and Thistle: Barkeep, 6 patrons. Aviella saved one of the patrons and got him out before he became a casualty. That Bitch dragged one out as well.
Outside the tavern: Sergeant of the guard; others in his patrol sustained only minor burns.
Elsewhere in Brindol: 22 buildings razed, many others sustained damage. 27 citizens dead, another 42 wounded. 24 guards dead, another 48 wounded. 59 militia dead, another 86 wounded.


New Acquisitions
  • 646 XP to all players (even those who weren’t present…they were busy doing other things)
  • Deathsteel Chainmail Armor +1: Property – You gain resist 5 necrotic and a +2 item bonus to saving throws against effects that include ongoing necrotic damage.
  • 2 small blue quartz gems
  • 12 gp, 5 sp

Character Journals

Click your character’s link below to create your journal entry on a new wiki page:
Diony – Session 1
Skein – Session 1
Tanner – Session 1
Aviella – Session 1
That Bitch – Session 1

Grymm – Session 1
Irjan – Session 1

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Prologue
Begin before the beginning
Waterday, 12 Reaping, 1468 CY

The hot sun finally dropped lower, casting long shadows across the busy streets of Brindol. Workers and tradesmen quit work for the evening, artisans closed up their booths and shops, and many were enticed to the lively sounds and mouth-watering smells coming from the taverns.

The Antler and Thistle was one such tavern. Those on the streets earlier in the day had heard all about the entertainment being hosted at the Antler and Thistle, Eloquent Elijah. He was rumored to be a bard who rivaled Vericho Nindleton—the halfling playing the Blue Parrot for a fee—but Elijah would be entertaining for free! Also, there were cheery reports of a new brew coming from out of town: Dergen’s XXX Stout, straight from Overlook, and tonight would be the first night it’s on tap in Brindol!


You are either from Brindol, or you’re a recent arrival. If you’ve kept your ears open in the past few days, you’ve heard that some threat from the west has the dwarves of Overlook calling any and all local heroes to Overlook where they will amass an army for defense of the Vale.

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Welcome to the Campaign!
Keeping it story-centric

Welcome, players! Your adventure awaits…

While the wiki is great for organizing the campaign world, it’s not the best way to chronicle our adventures. This Adventure Log will allow us to chronologically order the happenings of the campaign and record what has passed. After each gaming session, we’ll come to the Adventure Log and write up what happened. In time, it will grow into an epic story!

With gaming sessions roughly once a month, it can be hard to keep track of everything that’s going on and maintain our focus on the story. As your GM, I will write up a summary of every session, including information like experience points, treasure, and important events that transpired. I won’t always remember everything that’s important to your characters and their developing story, so I have a favor to ask of each of you:

Write a journal entry as your character within 7-10 days of each session and post it in the Adventure Log or on a wiki page that I can link to the Adventure Log. This will allow us to chronicle the most important events for every character and track zir development throughout the campaign.

Also, I may post In Character hooks before a session that will foreshadow the events of the upcoming game, so try to check the Adventure Log the night before we play.

Good Gaming,
CMoon

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