Scarlet Thorn

Castle Owners

The session started with the group in partial control of Slate Castle. With Furt’s help, they learned the towers had a prison, where they took the guards they had captured. They attacked a Griffon. It got away. They attacked the upper keep. They climbed the hill successfully, but were not sure how to get in. Then Voleur climbed up the tower wall and onto the roof. They roof had been cleared by a prior Hill Giant volley. Flo-Rida turned into a hawk and flew up. A guard attacked, but Voleur threw down a rope and had re-enforcements soon. Though Voleur and Flo-Rida managed the first guard just fine. Once inside the walls, the group had no trouble clearing out the keep. There were only a few guards left and several score of servants. Furt helped direct the group to where the important people were hiding. They did have some trouble with the group on the roof by the stables.

They learned the next higher agent was a gold smith in Verbobonc. They learned Slate army was on its way back and there was a secret tunnel entrance to the castle. Kate and the Hill Giants ambushed the group by the tunnel entrance and completely routed them. The group then proceeded to meet up with Dumbledor’s army. Once the Hill Giants arrived, the women and children headed for Slate castle and the three armies met in battle. After three engagements, the enemy forced were routed. Kate went from 75 to 54 Hill Giants and Ogres, but recovered back to 64. Dumbledor when from 500 to 287 but recovered back to 358.

The group decided to keep the castle by requesting the barony from the Viscount at Verbobonc once they had a character of high enough level. The class restrictions mean they would need one of the following: cleric(9), Fighter (9), Magic User(12), or Monk(8). The group found 9,392 in gold, silver, and gems at the castle. They obtained two feeblemind wands and one wand of lightning.

They stopped by Hadar’s temple before travelling to Verbobonc. Hadar did recall an old temple that might lead into the newer temple of which Cliff House was an entrance. He was confident the Prince was being held at the same location as the ring leader of the Scarlet Brotherhood because people who pursue hidden power trust few to guard their most precious things. Unless the ring leader was at Cliff House, the Prince was not. Hadar encourage the group to continue to search up the chain of command and once they found the person in control, they would most likely find the Prince.

On the way to Verbobonc, they were scried. They found the gold smith. They found several helpers. They were able to find out this group of agents control or at least have access to large sums of treasure. Baron Vuethor contacted them and offered a ransom for his wife, children, and castle. He is offering a ransom of 20,000gp.

Characters present for a total party experience of 67.392 xp (8424 each)
Styx (Ellie) 201,317xp
Ferrous (Erica) 216,379
Sophokle (David/Greg) 188,816
Flo-Rida (Flo) 105,866xp 9th Level (125,001 10th)
Farquad (Nels) 199,267xp 8th Level (350,001 9th)
Tylen (John/Halley) 186,275
Lark (Kate) 245,017
Voleur (Eric) 168,379 (newly level 10)

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Slate Castle

The session started in the old Temple tower where Burne and Rufus have been hiding out. The group met with Otis, YDay, Murfles, Burne, and Rufus. Otis explained his primary concern was to find the Prince, who is now the king since his father has died. YDay cooperates in this effort. The group wants to deal with the Brotherhood. There was discussion on whether the prince might be held in Cliff House or elsewhere under control of the Scarlet Brotherhood.
Otis plans to further investigate Cliff House, both in an attempt to free his brother and to discover if the Prince is held there.

The party decided to investigate Hommlet. Styx disguised herself as an old man. Sophokle and Voleur were invisible. With Furt’s help, they learned a lot about the inhabitants of Hommlet and became concerned with a band of houses near the Inn. They also discovered the previous Innkeeper was now a blind beggar outside his Inn. They found out the clerics in the temple of St Cuthbert were considering raiding the tower since the majority of the guards had left.

Furt discovered a handful of potential agents. The taylor communicated telepathically to a man at Slate Castle. Furt said the man at Slate Castle was black and tended to wear greasy cloths. The new Innkeeper, the Pot boy, and the Jeweler were suspicious but didn’t communicate telepathically. The two in the trade store were mind blocked. They killed the Taylor, the person they considered the main Scarlet Brotherhood agent. They threw a silenced rock in a window, stunned the Taylor, then killed him. They left a note in the temple for the clerics to meet in a field in the early morning, but no one showed up.

The next morning, Styx went in to speak with the St Cuthbert clerics and was locked in a cell. Voleur had been shadowing the exchange and was able to free her. That was the end of their attempt to work with the clerics.

That afternoon they returned to Burne’s hide out in Nulb. Burne decided to risk traveling back to Hommlet and attempt to re-take the tower. The group split into three teams once everyone was back at Hommlet. Krealle and Styx went to the jewelers to take out the other suspicious Scarlet agent. Voleur and Tylen went to the Inn to keep an eye on the new Innkeeper, who they also suspected. The rest of the group went with Burne to attempt to take the tower. Styx brought a necklace to show the jeweler, then color sprayed him. The stunned jeweler fell to the floor, but the guard saw the lights and went in to investigate. Styx suggested to the guard nothing was amiss. Krealle came into the house from the street, and cut the jewelers throat. The smell of blood caused the guard dog to start barking and the guard came in again to investigate. Styx again suggested to the guard the jeweler strangely attacked him and he killed in self defense. The two then left while the guard attempted to clean up the body and deal with the unfortunate death.

Meanwhile, the group addressed the young guard at the rope barrier near the castle. They finally decided to deal more forcefully with the guard. The guards nearby at the new gate to the castle started firing arrows. Burne sent them a fireball, but it was an absolute dud. The party ran to attack, but before they could reach the guards, Burne sent another fireball that finished off the group. The remaining guards were happy to welcome Rufus and Burne back to the tower.

The Innkeeper saw the fireball and went out to investigate. Voleur attempted to drug him, but failed. Styx and Krealle then met the group on their way from the jeweler to the tower. They managed to cause feeble mind, and the Inn keeper wandered back into the Inn.

Now back in control of the town, Rufus sent some guards to bring in the trade store owners, who had a mind bar. They group found out this was due to magical amulets given them by their grandmother. They decided this was not an issue. However, they went to find the Pot boy from the Inn that Furt had also identified as suspicious and caught him stealing cash and jewelery from the now dead jeweler. They sent him to the priests of St Cuthbert to allow them to deal with him.

Burne was able to contact Dumbledor and discovered he and his army were on the run from Slate Castle’s army. They had the women and children from Sobanwych with them so they could not fight. They needed a place to defend so the women and children would be safe. The group decided to attack Slate Castle with the help of the Hill Giants and Ogres now loyal to Nightingale.

With Furt’s help they are let into the castle, finding out that only three people would have been let in the gate: Kalaw, Aldan, or Sultas. Furt helped them impersonate Sultas. Sultas then received a tour of the castle as an inspection and went out to bring in the party. The group used the stun poison from the temple and mixed it in the soup. They then personally delivered the soup to encourage the troops. 41 guards were stunned before their ploy was discovered. They had to fight another nine, but gained control of one gate and one tower. They opened the gate and let in Nightingale and her troops.

Nightingale attacked the second gate while the party went after the second tower. Since the inner doors and walls of the gate were not designed to defend from internal attacks, the giants over whelmed the second gate. The group laid down a fog cloud as cover and ran to the second tower. At the edge of the cloud as it was dissipating, Tylen shot a fireball at the top of the tower, wiping out the soldiers there. Krealle knock the tower door and Styx color sprayed the guards ready to ambush the group. They then fought through three more floors of the tower to gain control.

Treasure
Walled castle

Characters present for a total party experience of 241,854 xp (34,550 each)
Styx (Ellie) 192,893xp
Ferrous (Erica) 207,955
Sophokle (David/Greg) 180,392
Krealle (Tim) 170,393
Tylen (John/Halley) 177,851
Lark (Kate) 236,593
Voleur (Eric) 159,955 (newly level 10)

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Temple Dungeon - Lvl 5

The players said good bye to Moulton – Tatyana and Barovia and Ravenloft castle. Tatyana was planning on restoring the castle and town back to its former glory. The characters had to choose between waiting for the boat people to return – which could take years based on the time differential – or attempting to return the way Moulton did by jumping over the wall and into the 1000 foot drop. They chose to take the leap. Moulton had a good idea of where she jumped, but not a perfect memory. The party did arrive back in the temple dungeon, but not exactly where Moulton did.

Rather than in the Grandfather’s cavern, they found themselves in some abandoned mines. They wandered through abandoned workings and broken down, rusty machinery and equipment. They found some strange molds and fungi – including yellow mold which Farquad fearlessly irritated into a cloud of spores. In the process, a quad of Shriekers did their shrieking. This loud noise attracted a group of trolls. The party stunned many of the trolls with Color Spray. They engaged in battle with the Trolls, but then cast web to ensnare them long enough to back off and cast a fireball. The fireball permanently turned the trolls to ash.

Continuing through the mine, they came across a group of Minotaurs. At this point Flo turned herself into a bat (Flobat) and was scouting ahead of the group. This allowed them to surprise the Minotaurs. Again, Color Spray took out a number of the group with combat finishing the rest. This time, they used suggestion to strongly encourage one Minotaur to show them how to get out of the dungeon. It had knowledge of only two exits: one somewhere in the halls of the Mountain Trolls and one near the lair of the Black Dragon named Song of Night Screams. They decided to go with the Dragon.

Once again Farquad encourage a frontal attack on the Dragon rather than fleeing the dungeon and leaving the dragon alive. The Minotaur brought them to a pool which he said was a place the Dragon was often seen and which was supposed to lead to outside. Flo turned into an otter and explored the pool. Thirty feet away the flooded channel again enlarged into the dragon’s lair, in which it was sleeping. Sixty feet away, the channel became a pool in the chamber of the Grandfather fungi. The party used a stone of underwater breathing to get quietly into the dragon’s chamber.

A lightening bolt and great thump from Lark ended the dragon’s days and donated the hoard to their bank accounts.

The party encountered a huge spider as they climbed out of the grandfathers chamber, but managed to kill the spider with a cone of cold spell. This brought them back to the back entrance of the temple. They went around to the temple castle, where a group of Hill Giants were waiting their return. The Hill Giants had heard about Nightingale’s skill in battle and the successful campaigns in which she had lead her Ogres troops. The Hill Giants wanted to either take over or join Nightingale, depending on the outcome of a challenge between Nightingale and their leader Hugo. Krealle cast an enlargement spell on Lark, making her the size of a Storm Giant. One hit brought down Hugo and gained Lark a troupe of 20 Hill Giants to add to her small army.

The group then went to Nulb and met with Otis, Burne, and Rufus. They found out war had been declared between Furyondy and Veluna. They also learned Otis’ brother had been captured and taken to Cliff House, probably just before Moulton had flooded the river.

Encountered
5 Trolls – 6110 xp
6 Minotaur – 3720xp
1 Young Black Dragon – 8480xp
20 Hill Giants – 18,800xp

Treasure
Clockwork Canary
Dragon Hoard – 44,500gp;
– 2 potions, axe, sword, scroll, bracelet (the dragon was wearing, magically shrunk)

Characters Present for total party xp of 87,097 (12,442)
Lark (Kate) 202,043xp 9th Level (500,001 10th)
Flo-Rida (Flo) 97,442xp 9th Level (125,001 10th)
Sophokle (Marc) 145,842xp 7th Level (200,001 8th)
Farquad (Nels) 190,843xp 8th Level (350,001 9th)
Styx (Ellie) 158,343xp 9th level (220,001 10th)
Henris Slayer (Nancy) 115,847xp 7th Level (125,001 8th)
Krealle (Tim) 135,843xp 9th Level (250,001 10th)

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Ravenloft
Vampire

The group spoke with the bar tender and learned about the place they had arrived at. They decided to head up the valley to the mountains and lands of Baronia. They arrived at the gates to Baronia and fought several Carnirous Apes at the gate. They did find some treasure.

They went into the town. They found a church that was in terrible disrepair. The Ent was able to do considerable repair to the beaten down building. They met the Burgermaster, but he did not let them into his house. (They found out later Moulton was hiding there). They also encountered a house with someone inside crying.

That night the church, where they were staying, was attacked by wolves. The Magic User used the magic broom to fly to the roof, which was covered with bats. While getting ready to cast a spell on the attacking wolves, something happened that the Magic User was never able to fully explain. Something about answering a lot of questions asked by a very likable man. The wolves left.

The next day they found out the crying lady lost her daughter and that Moulton had left a message for them with the gypsies. They did not have time to reach the gypsy camp before night fall, so they stayed in the church again and decided to leave early for the gypsy camp. They encountered ghosts leaving the graveyard and used Speak with Dead to learn about the castle. They learned a tall tower somehow lead to the crypts.

They met with the gypsies the next day. They were given the eye patch and the magic sword. They said Moulton was hiding from the vampire but would like to help them if they could. She asked for them to forgive her. She told them they needed to kill the vampire to get back. The gypsy said if they were going to attack the vampire, they should do so right away. He had many spies and the longer they waited, the more he would learn about them.

So they entered the castle. They were attacked by wolves. They found the chapel and got the icon to give them the turn bonus. They turned back and went for the organ music. They realized the trick (possibly saving a wasted spell) and found the secret door. They went down, then up, then down again, then up again. They found treasure. They found the girl. They found the throne room they were looking for, got the medallion and the tome, but were attacked by gargoyles and the vampire. They were running low on spells but managed to slay the gargoyles and the vampire. However, the vampire just retreated as vapor to its tomb.

They used stone shape to open passage in the stairway. They managed to visit the parents and brother’s tombs. They found the sunsword in the brother’s room. Next, they got into the vampires crypt and were able to put a stake through its heart. They carried the body to his parents cyrpt until the sun rose.

They left the castle with some trouble. Met Moulton. Rested, recovered all their equipment, and were able to increase to their new levels.

The characters now have the following XP:
Nels Paladin: 178401 lvl 8
Kate Twiggle: 189601 lvl 9
Tim Mystic: 123401 lvl 8
Eric Thief: 125405 lvl 9
John Mystic: 143401 lvl 9
Flo Druid: 85000 lvl 8
Ellie Illu: 145901 lvl 9
Erica Ranger: 173405 lvl 8

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Meshuga Mansion
Looking for secrets

Ellie, Flo, John, Eric, Hallie (Tim), Kate, Nels, Erica
The last session ended with David outside Meshuga tower / palace / manor house. The group started to explore the grounds. The found an underground entrance hidden in the garden. They investigated a pile of loose dirt, and were attacked by a Troll hand. Soon after, they were attacked by Trolls. The battle was difficult, because it began at close quarters and the magic users could not launch their fireball spells without hurting party members. With the help of an insect swarm and careful placement, they were able to explode a fireball and destroy the Trolls. The party found signs of Moulton and freed slaves. Cages used for slaves were empty. But then the party found a secret door.

The secret door lead to a deep cavern. Passages weaved through the cavern on bridges of wood and bone. The group carefully picked their way across the first bridge without trouble, but met a Roper in the cavern on the other side of the bridge. The combat against the Roper was relatively quick. In the room they discovered a hidden compartment with a crystal ball inside.

They crossed the next bridge and found another secret compartment. This time there was a wand of wonders and a bag of tricks. There was a trap on the next bridge and the thief fell into a net 60 feet below. The Magic User and his owl went to the rescue on the broom, which was fortunate because three Trolls showed up. Fortunately there wasn’t any comrades nearby this time. A quick fireball spell reduced the Trolls to ashes.

At this point the group did an Augury spell and determined they were better off not pursuing this route. They went back up to the garden. They found a Hobbit in the garden. This was the gardener. The gardener introduced the Treant to the owner. The owner requested a play in the theater the following day. He planned to bring a guest.

The group planned a theater show to convince Benedict of their good intentions. He was pleased for a while, then fell asleep. The party stayed at the mansion to rest further. They decided to send a messenger to Dumbledor to make sure he received their message. It turned out he had not received their message. He suggested they go forward and get to Baronia by working out passage with the River Gypsies. The group traveled overland to Hadar’s temple, killing a Hydra on the way. They worked out passage and found themselves in a foreign land.

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Black Lake Mine
December 19, 2012

Ellie, Kate, Greg(Tim), David, Erica, Catlin(Danielle)
Group started om Deep Creek village. The goal was to chase down Moulton, who traveled through the mine to get to Meshuga Tower. Even though the group had means to fly, they didn’t know where Meshuga Tower was, so they needed to follow the “road” the slave caravan followed. They were told the gate into the Black Mine tunnel was guarded by a person with a gem of true seeing and a “mind reader”. Carhandle the Magnificant was captured at the gate. If trying to get through again, he would have used some kind of charm on the gem guy. He has learned to use cerebral parasites against the mind reader types. He is not sure if the same person works the gem day after day, probably not. But when he was captured, the man wore the gem like a necklace around his neck.
The group tried to locate Cerebral Parasites in Verbobonc, but they have been outlawed. It would take more than two days to travel further to find some.
They charmed a miner and found out more about the town. The mind readers lived in a small house near the manor house. The town was run by a cousin of Baron Vuethor, Mark Constantine. He is nominally in charge. It would be six days before the next caravan was scheduled to go through the gates.
The charmed a guard and learned the guard rooms were separate from the mine entrance, but an old entrance existed that was bricked over.
The group decided to ask Burne for help. Burne suggested they speak with Dumbledoor. Dumbledoor had some Cerebral Parasites for them and a scroll to get through the bricked over door. They managed to get into the guard houses invisibly, with only one “encounter”. The poor guard was dropped unconscious with a Monk Vulcan grip.
They discovered an army in the tunnel, getting ready to attack.
They got out the other side and found out they were getting closer to Moulton. She had recently freed a number of slaves from the slave market at the other end of the mine. The group sent Erica’s character back to get the Pegasus and started after Moulton on horse back. They found Meshuga tower and the small village outside of it. A ship, probably a pirate ship, was burning in the ocean and a battle was happening on the ship between pirates and slaves. David went out to investigate, but did not see any signs of Moulton and was not able to rescue the slaves. David discovered two “minds” within the Meshuga tower palace / manor house.

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Freedom Again
Party ends up in Hardby

The session began with the party sinking down into the cold water of the Sahuagin fortress. The group carefully rationed their water potions, gear, and spells and determined they had 36 minutes to explore plus another 30 minute reserve. They found the water to be cold and dark.

The first underwater room was empty, but Lizard women were watching from the nearby hallway. These women had been scratched all over their bodies and were desperately offering up potions for the men to drink. The group took a potion, but did not drink it.

Further on, they found a hallway with pizza sized urchins on the walls. They eventually ran by the urchins, taking some damage from their sharp spines. They discovered some kind of ritual in progress. A poor lizardman was being attacked by strange creatures, sofa cushioned sized bodies with crab-like skin and squid tentacles, having carrot like beaks and large dark eyes. These creatures attacked the lizardman, while other humanoids watched from hallways. The party attacked the whole group, stunning them with a color spray spell. After stunning them, they viciously destroyed the tentacled beasts and went to investigate the humanoids. Most of the stunned humanoids were human, mysteriously capable of surviving underwater.

Political influence. Learned these creatures were the Sahuagin females, and the event just observed had to do with Sahuagin reproduction. The “Madams”, as these Sahuagin were called, controlled their servants through potions.

Attacking Sahuagin females.
The guard room battle.
The torture chamber battle.
Prisoner release.
Sending off the broom.
Following the sharks.
The battle of
Gift of the Turtle and Treasure.
Meeting in Hardby
Hiring a boat
Sealing the treasure.

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Sahuagin Fortress
Not left behind

The game started with a counsel between the party, elves, and lizard men. The party had just survived an ambush and discovered some key treasure. At the counsel, the water people discussed running away from the Sahuagin and determined the only safe refuge was entirely underwater. This served a dual purposes of leaving the characters as decoys for the Sahuaging attack. Of course the party would be destroyed by the Sahuagin, but that might distract the foraging beasts long enough to let the trail of the elves and lizard men grow cold.

The party disagreed with this plan and successfully motivated the counsel to consider an attack rather than fleeing once again. The counsel reluctantly agreed under one circumstance: the characters needed to rescue the captured lizardmen currently being held by the Sahuagin. This requirement was on top of the previous commitment to destroy or distract the giant crocodile that had been plaguing the lizard man patrols. The party also asked for support from the elves and lizardmen. One elf and one lizardman offered to join the effort to rescue the captives.

The party wisely began to research the fortress of the Sahuagin that was formerly the home of the lizardmen. They were able to get a map of the fortress as well as some information about the surroundings. The old Lizardman told them about a secret entrance through a blow hole they could use, but only at low tide. They also decided to interrogate the captured Sahuagin held by the Lizardmen. The treant beat up the Sahuagin, but then healed it to bring about an attitude of submission. They were able to learn more about the fortress and the changes the Sahuagin had already been making. They also learned about a giant Kraken guard. Later they decided to attempt to get more information out of the sahuagin and ended up killing the creature, but not before he took several large chunks of wooden skin from the Treant.

The group went out to kill the giant crocodile. The lizardman guide led the characters through the tall, swampy reeds to a spot 200 yards from a small pond where two streams drained into a pool. A small rocky outcropping divided the two rivers. The crocodile was known to live in the pool. The party decided to circle around the pool and take up defensive positions in the trees on the rocky outcropping. However, they saw signs of a dragon on the outcropping. The thief discovered a shallow cave, and the dragon attacked. The party was able to slay the dragon as the 24 foot long crocodile was approaching, and the crocodile quickly fled, never to be seen again.

The party found several choice items in the dragon’s lair. Gold and scrolls of magic as well as a broom of flying. They took their treasure and recovered from their battle wounds prior to leaving for the Sahuagin fortress.

Due to the swamp skills of the Lizardman and Elf, the party had no problems crossing the swamp island to the Sahuagin fortress. They decided to use the broom to ferry people across the 200 yards of ocean to reach the island fortress, having learned the Kraken patrolled the causeway waters. Thus the party arrived safely at the fortress and waited to enter through the secret passage at low tide.

Once inside the fortress, they came across six Sahuagin guarding twelve slaves. They killed the guards and freed the prisoners, taking them up through the secret entrance. However, one prisoner insisted they check on his companion, who was left to die in the prison. The party defeated another three Sahuagin and found the dying prisoner. He told them a number of incoherent things, but also mentioned a secret chamber. With the information gained from his dying words, they were able to find the secret chamber and obtained more water-specific magic items.

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Left for Dead

The party is “sacrificed” to appease the storms. They are left with nothing in an underground chamber. The party finds their way through dark and sandy underground tunnels. The party manages to overcome a crayfish and a roper. The party survives an attack by a family of Piercers. Finally, the party finds a community of mushrooms and manages to communicate with their king. In exchange for the body of the Crayfish, he gives them a way out. They enlarge the Ent, who throws most of them over a chasm. They manage to reach the surface and find a small tribe of humans living in a paradise situation with the cone of the volcano.

After resting, they work with some Sea Elves to investigate a group of Lizard Men. The lizard men turn out to be friendly, preparing for an attack of Sahuagin. The Sea Elves are informed of this news. The Lizard Men agree to arm the party in exchange for the party’s destruction of a giant crocodile.

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Hadar's Playground

The group finds their way back to Hommlet, where things are still under the control of the Scarlet Brotherhood. The group takes a river boat to Gafferville where they re-unite with Seth and his family. The party sneaks onto the island and fights a number of Kobolds. They find the entry way trapped, but make their way into the ante-chamber. Here they speak the secret name and are allowed passage into a great underground chamber. They meet Hadar, who gives them a quest and several magical items. They return to the surface only to be betrayed by Moulton and enslaved by pirates.

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