Godstorm: The Fall of Darnthor

06/28/2015
The guardians within the king's domain

Update to the adventure:

In this portion of the campaign, the wizard “Creed Melech” joined the party at the Inn and the three party members made their way into the sewers in order to further investigate the case of the robberies throughout the town as tasked by the patron. Misshapen human-like footprints led the group to a room used as a home by the King of the Sewers (a crazy old hobo.) Upon investigating the walls, a hidden passage to a cavern was found. This led to a large room with stone columns, guarded by two metal gargoyles. They attacked only when the party attempted to pass them and continued attacking only when attacked first. Once defeated, the room beyond was found to contain the stolen red gem, the bellows parts from the blacksmith, a bed of hay and a recently used teleportation circle. The circle was deactivated (the words “Iggy was here” now cover it) and the party received 50g apiece for the information that was returned to the patron.
For two days, Iggy worked on some mechanical boots, Creed studied up on different kinds of arcane constructs and the fighter investigated the spot where a caravan recently went missing. Two previous caravans were attacked and stolen from (both were carrying metal) an d the most recent one simply went missing. At the spot, the fighter found foot-prints, identified thanks to the wizard’s studies as being similar to those of a “Steamjack,” a hulking mechanical construct.
Now the party prepares to set out to find the missing caravan for the patron’s next task and hopefully put a stop to those responsible.

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The Castle Ruins
"An encounter with angry automatons"

In this portion of the campaign, Clandoor the high elf fighter, Melech the drow Wizard and Iggy the gnome tinkerer followed the suspicious foot-prints off-road. A dense patch of forest full of spiders were encountered while following the trail of the hijacked wagons, but the creatures were quickly defeated after they attempted to subdue the party with webs. After the forest, the trail led to the ruins of a castle. Before entering, two mechanical constructs attacked. After they were defeated, they were found to be powered by mystical gems. Iggy took one after inspecting how they were created and Melech took the other to fashion into an arcane focus. Inside the castle ruins, multiple rooms were found to contain deteriorated furniture. Although it seemed nobody had been through in ages, multiple traps were set up. Luckily, all damage was avoided, though not stealthily. Dropping through a hole created by a particularly explosive rune trap, the party ended up on a walkway above a pool of swirling water. In these parts of the castle, a few rooms were found to contain very little, except for a hidden one in which was found a chest containing a rod with a red button. Exploring further, multiple suits of armor were found along the walls. After inspecting a room, they had moved without the party’s knowledge. Upon interaction, they attacked. The arcane focus made from the steamjack hearts turned out to be a particularly powerful weapon against them (at least when the attacks connected.) After taking a long rest to recover from the fight against 4 suits of armor, the party made its way to the next, lower level of the castle. Proceeding forward and to the right, a room filled to the brim with enchanted items was found. Melech took a scroll of Fireball, scroll of necromancy and twin scrolls of messaging from the room but the rest of the items were deemed too dangerous to interact with.
The next portion of the campaign will consist of exploration of the rest of the lower level of the castle.

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Session-7/12
"The Steeljack factory discovery"

After the room with the enchanted items the party decided to continue heading into the dungeon. They came to a room that glowed red and was very hot. They all entered and Iggy went to the far end of the room that had no wall and stepped out on the ledge there. As he looked down he saw, several hundred feet below, a giant pool of lava. On the other side of that lava he saw what looked like a factory floor with a lot of Steeljacks. These were lesser creatures than the ones that had been encountered outside the ruins.

Decided that the stone statue in the room wasn’t something they wanted to wait and see about they continues out of the room through a hallway on the other side of the statue that emptied into a rectangular room like the one with the door to the treasure room. This door however opened to an empty room.

After messing about a bit Iffy triggered a switch which caused the floor of the circular room to begin to collapse, forming a stone spiral staircase down. Below the air was cooler and had a whiff of salt. They discovered an armory full of edged weapons (swords, spears, halbards, etc,) but no armor. They also found a room with food stuffs.

Farther down they discovered several cells filled with people that weren’t really injured or starving but had little to no energy. In fact talking seemed to take a tremendous amount of effort. One prisoner seemed to be in better shape than the others and offered to help the party make their way through the dungeons.

After encountering another Steeljack they made their way up a second set of stairs into another part of the castle. They worked their way into a hall outside a room that was filled with Steeljacks (like the ones outside the castle), a larger Jack and what looked like a Warforged. Iggy threw in a couple Big Bombs taking out the smaller jacks. And the others finished off the larger one. The Warforged, who turned out to be a wizard vanished and they realized there was halfling on a small stone pedestal in the back of the room.

The prisoner from the cells below identified the halfling as the great-granddaughter of the one that build the castle and offer to take her back down stairs and prep the other prisoners for rescue.

The party continued on and discovered that they had managed to work their way around to an island some distance away from the castle ruins. They crossed a bridge to another island and their fought a swarm of rats.

They are currently resting on the beach between the two islands attempting to recover from the battles so far.

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Session 7/19- "Back to Town"
"Good Luck Storming the Castle!"

In this session of “The Fall of Darnthor” the gang escorted the prisoners back to town via the main road. On the way there, a group of bandits attempted an ambush by pretending that their wagon had broken down, thanks to the extreme paranoia of the Bard “Keff”, the group did not fall for it. A scuffle ensued and all but the youngest bandit was killed. The youngster was taken prisoner after surrendering and the group made it back to town without further incident. A reward of 1,000 GP per person was received and the patron of the city put the adventurers in the city’s employ. While the fact that the Wizard is building Steel-jacks is concerning, the patron is much more concerned of the possibility that the Wizard and his minions will eventually happen upon an ancient artifact of great power that is said to still reside someone in the ruins. The party is given two days to prepare to go back to the castle and stop the wizard before he does. In that time:
Iggy and Creed are given access to the castle labs.
-Iggy decodes a cortex brain salvaged from a Steel-Jack and finds that he is able to reprogram it, though does not have the time to do so.
-Creed studies the nature of the magic that is used to bind life-force energy to the crystals found inside of Steel-Jacks that make them run with the help of two newly purchased chickens. One chicken succumbs to the magical energy, the other proves itself worthy of life by continually making saving throws against it.
Clandoor buys a shiny, new double-barreled pistol after a night of drinking.
Keff spent his time in the historical archives to further study the nature and history of the ruins as well as some personal matters.

Once the two days were up, the party was sent with a contingent of soldiers back to the castle. On the way there, three Giant Spiders were encountered which proved troublesome. Clandoor’s new double-barreled pistol came in very handy. Though a couple were soldier were lost fighting 4 of their own spiders, they all finally made it back to the castle ruins only to discover that it was being heavily guarded with Steel-jacks, which were spread throughout the forest as well as a few stationed at the entrance.

To be continued…

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Session 8/2 - "Securing the Citadel"
An ancient discovery

In this session of “Godstorm: The Fall of Darnthor,” the party re-entered the castle after going through some nasty steam-jacks. Once inside, they retraced their steps to secure to main floor and secured various rooms until finding one that had not been previously discovered. Upon entering, Iggy inspected some crates which were found to be filled with parts for “War-jacks,” a much more destructive, upgraded version of steam-jacks. Clandoor noticed that there were many scrape marks along the floor, indicating that there were once many more crates in the room. One of the storage rooms with scrape marks on the floor also had a false wall, quickly discovered by Clandoor and destroyed by Iggy.

The mission was to secure the castle in order to prevent the wizard from discovering an ancient artifact of great power buried deep beneath the castle somewhere. This seemed like a likely place to find a hidden artifact of great power, so the party ventured forth.

On the other side was an earthen passageway to some spiral stairs and a long corridor that went on for hours. It eventually led to an enormous cavern filled with a nest of giant spiders and a sheer cliff face. After successfully sneaking past the spider nest, a rickety rope bridge was found to span the cavern and the party carefully crossed it while giant bats flew overhead. On the other side of the bridge, they arrived before an enormous set of wooden doors. Pushing it open, the doors fell with a deafening thud and the party gazed upon the ruins of a long-buried ancient city.

Making their way in, the first thing they heard was an extremely loud roar that Keff of Trynn’s Hold recognized as that of a Troll. Unfazed, the party made its way into the city until reaching its center, at which was a giant, stone obelisk in front of the columned facade of an official-looking building. On the obelisk was written a warning in the halfling language to turn back as well as a sigil-like rune with writing that nobody could translate. Iggy, however, recognized the rune as belonging to an ancient city of great evil that practiced dark arts. Keff recognized something about it as well and became excitable to the point of rushing into the building ahead. Inside, the party made its way down a long hallway flanked by suits of purple, spiked metal armor until coming to a golden door with motifs of the faces of gods. At the very top-the god of death. At this point, Creed became as excited as Keff and insisted on going further. Keff attempted to open it immediately, only to activate a poison-needle trap. Iggy was able to de-activate more traps set on it and peered inside, only to slam it shut with wide eyes. Despite his protests, both Keff and Creed pushed their way past.

Past the golden doors was a great throne room with two, large chairs made of stone flanked by more armor armed with spears. In each sat an undead Wight, both of which communicated with the party that they were not welcome and to leave. They revealed that the half-ling was an unwelcome trespasser as well. Both Creed and Keff bowed in reverence before the Wights and told of their mission to find a powerful artifact and the fact that each sought great power (while Iggy and Clandoor kept a respectable distance.) Intrigued, the Wights told the party that they would reveal the location of the artifact and allow them passage through their realm if they proved themselves worth through trial by combat.

The adventurers now ready for battle in order to find what they seek.

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Session 8/9 - "Into Darkness"
Wight Fight and a Cavern Conveyance

In this session of “Godstorm: The Fall of Darnthor,” the party proves itself worthy of gaining information from the Wight leader “Aloyzo” by defeating 3 Wight champions in a coliseum. While their life-sucking melee attacks proved a challenge, a late entrance by Creed’s faithful companion chicken “Cluckers” helped turn the tide of battle in the party’s favor. As a reward for their performance in battle, the Wights pointed the party in the direction of the powerful item that they are seeking, as well as being promised some additional rewards of knowledge and power.

While taking the night to rest, Iggy took some time to begin working on a new invention- a shield capable of reflecting damage. Meanwhile, Creed communed with Cluckers and realized that he is not only sentient, but possesses a distinct personality. During this communion, he received a message on one of the scrolls of sending from the guard captain back at the castle that an attack force was on its way to the party. After passing the information along to the Wights and telling them to prepare for battle, the party returned to their quarters in preparation to leave. Upon returning, Creed received a book of prose and information on ancient rituals and powerful spells. Keff of Trynn’s Hold recieved a scroll with information relating to the language of the runes encountered on the obelisk in the town center as well as some historical data. While being escorted to the back door to the city, a guard Wight gifted Clandoor with a +1 Scimitar for the substantial show of fighting prowess exhibited in the arena. With an automated army about to clash with the Wight’s, the adventurers made their way out of the city further into the darkness of the planet.

After a while, the party decided to take a long rest in a natural alcove. While on watch, Creed noticed a large, floating boulder pass by. While initially cautious of it, everyone eventually decided to let it float on by. Once everyone was rested up, they made their way towards the power emanating from the item they seek, which only Creed could sense despite a high arcane check by Keff. Eventually, all came to a large, open cavern with a wide gap that had no way across. As the party started brainstorming, the floating boulder came back into view, moving in the direction of the open cavern. Luckily, Iggy considered the situation quickly and decided to shoot the boulder with his harpoon, penetrating it and attempting to stop it. No amount of strength could stop it long enough to inspect or get on top of, so Iggy was dragged with it, forcing the rest of the party to jump on him as the boulder cleared the cliff face. After a harrowing ordeal of strength checks, Iggy was able to crank the harpoon (and the party) upwards towards the boulder, allowing everyone to get on top of it. Eventually, it brought the party through a tunnel filled with luminescent lichens to a ledge where everyone jumped off onto solid ground as the rock continued back on its path the way it came.

Looking around, the adventurers realized that they were on a spiral rock formation covered in lichens with steps carved into it, leading both up and down. While taking some time to decide which way to go, a long howl coming from above echoed throughout the chamber. After a quick nature check, it was identified as the sound of a Quigoth – a domesticated werewolf-like animal common among the Drow. The party decided to go down, away from the howling and towards the direction of the item’s power. After traveling down the spiral stairs for a short while, they came across a tunnel and decided to see where it goes. Shortly after stepping in, two Quigoth appeared at the tunnel’s mouth.

To be continued on 8/16

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Session 8/16 - "The Deep-Down"
The Smurfs of Skaleheim

Confronted by multiple Quaggoths, the party attempted to talk its way out of danger before jumping into battle. All fought ferociously and Creed was knocked out before the Quaggoths were defeated. After recovering, the Quaggoth bodies were thrown over the ledge into water and the group headed down the tunnel it was ambushed in. Eventually, they came to a fork and took some time for an arcana check to find which way to go. As they rested, from each direction of the fork came a group of blue-skinned gnomes wearing quaggoth skins. After some fruitless discussion, the gnomes forced the new-comers back the way they came, forbidding them to venture any further downward. Upon reaching the mouth of the tunnel again, Iggy appeared just in time for Keff and Creed to grab him and Clandoor and jump off the ledge into the darkness below.
As the group fell, pinpricks of light from below became larger and more numerous. On the way down, Iggy decided he wanted no part in whatever was happening and used his should-mounted harpoon launcher to attach himself to a wall. Before hitting the water below, Keff cast feather-fall, and everyone landed safely in what turned out to be a giant cistern in the middle of a large, circular city. Upon reaching the edge of the cistern, they were greeted by a surly welcoming party, particularly unhappy with the presence of a Drow in their city. As they were being locked up and interrogated, Iggy walked into the city through the front gate, pretending to be searching for a lost city and documenting his travels along the way. As he made his way through the city, asking questions and investigating along the way, the locked up party members met a religious figure as well as the overly-obese judge of the city. After some interrogation by the judge, Creed revealed that the item that the party is searching for was calling to him, drawing him towards it. The abbot, intrigued and concerned, let Creed out and led him to a marble building similar to the one encountered in the Wight city. Here, Creed was told of the safeguards surrounding the item, which were supposed to prevent anybody from being able to detect it. He was also told of a prophecy surrounding it, concerning its retrieval from one who could sense it and was meant to find it. Creed decided to make his way forward, through the protective barrier around the item (which could not be focused on, as it draws attention away from itself.) Upon reaching it, the item flashed numerous scenes in his head from the item’s perspective:
-Two gods battling. One God struck the other and it fell back and shattered across the land-causing the great Cataclysm.
-A piece was found by a human male with a pure spirit and protected for the duration of his life. Frequently, he would narrowly escape an intense evil that pursued it.
-The elderly human, Denaad, handing the piece over to the gnome abbot.
-Gnome and Dwarf clerics erecting magical barriers to protect the item between four pillars made of precious stones.

After seeing these visions, Creed appeared 15 feet behind the abbot, who had been watching, and felt a great, wide field of awareness around him and saw that the item was now gone. Satisfied, the abbot led Creed back to the others and let them know what had happened. By this time, Iggy had annoyed the Judge enough that they forced him outside and he ended up at a clockwork shop. While Keff went to an inn to rest and Clandoor visited an armory to buy a strong long-bow, Iggy talked to the owner of the clockwork shop, noticing some intentionally shoddy work in the items displayed out front. Once he revealed himself to be a ‘patron of the arts’, the gnome owner showed him the good stuff in back, including a novel invention – a box that turns into an indestructible, one-room shelter. Intrigued, Iggy offered an energy crystal in trade. Excited about the potential of such a thing, the gnome insisted on giving him not only the extendo-hut, but also a condenser bottle that re-fills with water every 5 minutes or so as well as a portable teleportation device that can be set up in two different locations, similar to one installed in the gnomes home.

Eager to get Creed out of the city as soon as possible after hearing what had happened with the item, the Judge had everyone escorted to the front gates the next morning. Before leaving, Creed was taken aside by the Abbot and asked to help end the attacks on the gnomish city by the Drow and their Quaggoth beasts. Agreeing that he would do what he could, the party set off up the spiral stairs. After a few hours, they stopped for a short rest in the mouth of a tunnel. After the rest, the party heard some distant, guttural chanting coming from further into the tunnel and decided to investigate with some trepidation. Upon reaching a giant caver, they saw in the distance a group of 10 beings prostrating themselves before an altar with a glowing item hovering above it. Eager to see what it was, Keff made his way over to the altar via a series of stealth checks and proceeded to use mage hand to make the item, which he could now see was a glowing, oddly-shaped mask, hover above the group. All beings stared in awe and took a few steps back, watching the mask as it rose. Once it was close enough, to the group, Keff used Shatter to make it appear the mask as screaming at and attacking them. As he did so, he attempted to float the mask past them unseen-unsuccessfully. The session ends with the remaining 5 beings, now close enough to be identified as troglodytes, spotting Keff while the rest of the party looked on from above.

To be continued on 8/23…

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Session 8/23 - " The Ascending"
Trogg Rescue/Back to town

In this session of “Godstorm: The Fall of Darnthor”:

We find Keff exposed to 10 Troglodytes as he attempts to steal the glowing mask being worshipped by them. After a well-placed Shatter spell, 5 of the trogs have been knocked down and the other 5 damaged. Seeing their ally in imminent danger, the rest of the party is quick to act. Iggy jumps off the ledge where the party has been watching the events unfold and activated his jump boots to get some distance. At the apex of the jump, he shoots his harpoon between the trogs and Keff and pulls himself between them. With his mechanical arm attachments and his shield to protect him, he fends off the enemies, including one larger than the rest from which he receives a staggering amount of regular damage as well as poison damage. As he is fending them off, Keff is casting spells over his shoulder and Clandoor is unleashing a volley of arrows from his new longbow. Creed jumps down from the ledge using the rope attached to the immovable rod to do a perception check for hidden danger to the party, only to find two gnomes in cages-one dead and another starving and with a broken leg. After seeing no incoming threats, Creed moves forward and starts casting spells in support. It is a dirty fight with much damage being taken, but all survive. In the aftermath of the fight, the party inspects the altar as well as the refuse pile nearby, consisting of items belonging to the trogs’ past victims. Searching through it, a number of magic items were found:
-A venom dagger, -Robe of the Arch-Magi, -A Magic Flute, -Potion of Greater Healing
Creed took the potion and deadly dagger as well as the robe while Keff, the bard, of course took possession of the instrument. Once the loot was distributed, Keff distributed some healing spells and the party constructed something to carry to carry the broken gnome back to the city, as his leg was broken and he was not able to make it back on his own.

As the group made its way down the winding stairs once again, it started raining, making the moss-covered steps even more slippery than before. It was discovered from the rescued gnome that the rain was coming from above and that the cistern was actually open. As it turns out, the hole in which the gnomes live goes all the way to the mountains above. After a series of successful dexterity checks, everyone made it safely back to the gnome city of Skaleheim.

After a brief conversation with guards at the gate, the identity of the rescued gnome sent them running to retrieve the judge. On their way to the courthouse, the group was approached by the judge and it was revealed that the rescued gnome was none other than the judge’s own nephew, kidnapped over a 10-day ago while out on an excursion. Extremely grateful, the judge allowed the group to travel around the city without being guarded or watched as they were now welcomed guests and the gnome was taken away by the clerics to be healed.

At this point, the party split up to accomplish their own goals with the new downtime:

Clandoor decided on taking some well-earned rest and relaxation time at an inn.

Creed asked the cleric for the location of a magic shop and bestiary. Upon arriving at the bestiary, filled with newts, salamanders and a “kresh” (Squid thing with tentacles and suckers) he found that the shop owner (Adari) knew nothing of communing with animals. From there, Creed traveled to the magic shop, where he found a number of magic items for sale and met the owner of the establishment disguised as a mannequin. At first, Creed purchased a scroll of scry and one of animate dead to add to his spell-book. After some negotiations, the owner agreed to show him the good stuff, including a Magic Jar, conjured by someone ages ago, which was far too expensive to afford. However, he would consider a trade. Before promising to come back with something that would interest the shop-owner, he was told of a machine that rises to the top of the cistern, which would mean that the party would not have to deal with the slick stairs again. Also mentioned was a train that went straight to a dwarven city. Eventually, Creed left and searched for Iggy, finding him after a few hours tinkering with something mechanical.

Iggy went back to the mechanical tinkerer’s shop to strike a deal with Himo to market his inventions across the surface world via the portable teleportation circle he received earlier. Iggy assured Himo that he could get him fresh, new materials with which to create whatever Himo could think of. Excited at the prospect, Himo eagerly agreed before Iggy could even finish his proposal. Afterwards, he sat for a while working on a contraption until found by Creed.

Keff started searching for someone who could tell him something about the mysterious, ancient, glowing mask which was being worshipped by the troglodytes that he had taken and ended up at an Inn filled with shady characters. Upon entering, the humanoids at an occupied table got up and left out a back door. Following closely, Keff stopped them to ask who they were and if they knew anything about the mask he found. None of those stopped were receptive to being questioned, and warned him not to follow them for his own good. Dejected, Keff was not able to gain any useful information and made his way back to the inn.

Iggy and Creed went back to the magic shop to trade two of the steel-jack crystals for the Magic Jar. At first, the owner was hesitant-at least until Iggy demonstrated the power of the crystals by using Creed’s staff (topped with the crystal arcane focus) to destroy half a building outside. After making the trade, Creed asked for some help communicating with Cluckers. All the wizard could tell him was that the dwarf inhabiting the chicken’s body was not a case of magical possession, but rather a case of reincarnation caused by an extremely powerful magic or being. He also made passing mention of one other case of such a thing happening with somebody being turned into a newt/salamander (now long dead.) With that information, the Iggy and Creed met up with the rest of the group at the inn for a long rest.

Keff took the time to practice with the flute, finding it to have the power to heal (with a roll of a 1 on a d6) and and the power to create 4 mice (with the roll of a 4.) He is now attuned.
Iggy is taking some time to tinker with a new invention.
Creed used the time to use the scroll of messaging to communicate with the guards back at the castle that the item was “taken care of” and for the soldiers and patron to return to the city. Also attempted was the addition of the scry spell to his spellbook to check on the Wights and their progress with the invading steeljacks. After a couple terrible rolls, he failed and the scroll was destroyed.

To be continued…

*Note: This is the first recorded session of “Godstorm: The fall of Darnthor”

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Session 8/30 - "Destination Unknown"
Collecting on a job well done

In this session of “Godstorm: The Fall of Darnthor”:

The party had to make a quick escape from Scaleheim after Keff returned to the inn where he originally met the met in red robes to ask some questions. While there, he met only a guard, whom he asked about the men in red robes. After some brief questions, the guard immediately takes Keff into custody.

While Keff was away, Clandoor found an armory to buy a new ranged weapon. After some browsing and discussion with the shop owner, Clandoor spent a considerable amount of money on a magical “Dragon Revolver,” which spits fire along with special bullets in quick succession.
Meanwhile, Iggy went back to the Gnomish workshop to see Himo about other inventions and gadgets that he could find.

After everyone met back up at the inn, they were approached by the magistrate. There had recently been a high-profile murder of the elven ambassador’s assistant by men in red robes. They were told that Keff has been taken into custody for questioning, as all that was known about the murder was that it was done by men in red robes and Keff insisted on asking very specific questions about them to a city guard. It took some convincing and a few successful persuasion rolls, but the magistrate was convinced to let Keff go as long as the party left as soon as possible. Everyone agreed and decided to return to the Patron in Malakordasi via a teleportation circle provided by the abbot.

The circle transported everyone into the mountains about 4 days outside of the city. On the way back, the group encountered a couple of large Elk, which were persuaded to let them pass thanks to Keff’s flute song of ‘animal friendship’. After another day of traveling, the party happens upon a group of three orcs. Not in the mood for talking, they were quickly dispatched (after some heavy damage received.) Eventually, all made it back to the city. The guards escorted everyone straight to the patron, who rewarded each person with a thousand gold for securing the magic item from the wizard as well as some much needed time off.

With the time off, Creed decided to finally outfit Cluckers with armor and proceeded to an armory. Clandoor, now weighed down with a large variety of weapons, decided to hire a squire as a pack-mule and general adventuring helper. Luckily, the company “Squires For Hire” has a chain location in the city, and Anders the squire was recruited, with much enthusiasm on his part. Iggy decided to research how to make special bullets for Clandoor’s dragon revolver in the lab.

Next time during “Godstorm: The Fall of Darnthor,”- the party returns to Scaleheim to investigate the murder of the elven ambassador’s assistant (without Keff, as he is no longer welcome.)

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Session 9/6 - "There and Back Again"
First Big Bad Fight

In this session of “Godstorm: The Fall of Darnthor”:

Keff decided to visit a prison to the south of Malakordasi for reasons unknown and has split from the rest of the group for this session.

The party returns to Scaleheim via Iggy’s teleportation door bought from Himo at the workshop in the city, which exits at the workshop itself. Upon inspection, the workshop is empty and the city is eerily quiet and empty. iggy took a second teleportation gate in the workshop to Himo’s personal house, only to find it empty. After looking out the windows, he saw three plumes of smoke coming from where the magistrate’s office is.
After telling the rest of the group, all made their way towards the office, only to find that it is not the magistrate’s office that was on fire, but the building across from it. In front of it, a dwarf armed with a warhammer was found holding off a group of 5 humanoids. Clandoor yelled “what’s going on here?!” only to have the closest two thugs attack. As they closed, about 5 more humanoids, looking as if they were not made of flesh, appeared in an alley. Alandrei the dwarven cleric identified the ones coming from the alley as ‘twig-blights,’ made of bundles of sticks. During the ensuing battle, the twig-blights were found to explode when exposed to fire. The thugs were not so vulnerable.

After the fight, Alandrei Godsheld introduced himself as a dwarf on a brief vacation visiting from the dwarven city connected to Scaleheim by the train. Creed used ‘Charm Person’ on a knocked out thug to find that he was under the employ by a man in red. The party hid the bodies in a nearby alley, first liberating the corpses of the red arm bands that all of the humans wore. Once inside, Creed distributed the arm-bands, only to have Iggy discover that the symbol on them identified them as belonging to the same people who stole his family’s fortune and tried to assassinate him years before. The charmed thug, Finnian (named Gerald by Iggy) is from a city named Guthar and was hired to guard the magistrates office and general thuggery while the city was sacked. Without any more useful information, the thug was knocked out. Creed investigated the rest of the building, only to find it deserted while Iggy tracked down a map of the city.

The next logical place to investigate would be the temple, as everyone is fairly certain that the wizard is searching for the item that Creed encountered before. However, knowing the city is now empty, the party proceeded to the magic shop, hoping to loot it. Upon arriving, they found it had already been ransacked, and only 2 healing potions and a potion of climbing was left. They were looted and distributed and everyone made their way to the temple. From the alley, they watched a guard patrol cross until Creed accidentally stepped on a cat’s tail, which sped away. The guards were not alerted and the group made their way inside, made easier by the fact that the doors and a good part of the wall had been blown out.

Before entering the chamber where the item was encountered, an investigation of the door revealed a trap, which Iggy promptly disarmed with his thieves tools. After slowly opening the door and peering inside, Creed saw a man at the altar in robes along with 5 thugs flanking him. Using the Magic Jar, Creed attempted to possess the man at the altar but failed. A successful attempt on one of the thugs led to Creed threatening the man while in the other’s body, only to end the spell before the man could kill the thug. The party then kicked the door in and attacked the arch-mage and the group surrounding him.

The thugs fell easily enough under the pressing might of the party. However, the arch-mage put up a fight with extremely powerful spells, including lightning bolts. With use of the immovable rod, the doors were shut tight, preventing an escape. The arch-mage attempted to escape with misty step, but some area attacks prevented it. Eventually he put up a force wall with his back to the door. Iggy launched himself over it with his rocket boots and shot the wizard with his harpoon, continually stunning him with his shocking gloves. Clandoor threw Alandrei over it and both engaged him, along with Creed slinging spells, which turned out to be ineffective. As it turns out, the arch-mage was resistant to almost everything. After pounding on him viciously, Clandoor delivered the killing blow, launching himself off of the dwarf and chopping off the mage’s head, which Creed collected and put in his magic jar.

To be continued…

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