The Sunken City

Session 19

February 26th, 2013

The characters awoke in strange compromising positions to the sound of Baptist eating. After a few moments everyone collected themselves. Tsanth & Glint were sent back into the city to find some hirelings. Shortly afterwards Marquanus & Yancy Knowles appear, both eager to earn some quick cash.

The party opted to finish the job that Iomagoth started and set themselves to toppling the idol. Upon closer inspection of the idol, it was noticed that the idol oozed with a foul smelling ichor that radiated a soft green light and was shot through with flecks of gold. The ichor corroded most of the wooden objects it was prodded with. The woven pallets that were lying about the vault were then piled around the idol and then set ablaze, to no effect. Using more direct means, Marquanus the hireling felled the idol with one blow using the headsman’s sword. The party continued to prod at the idol once it was prone and discovered a trove of relics hidden in the idol’s ribcage. These relics were:

1. A gold chalice set with semi-precious stones (25 gp)
2. Seven death’s head rings (5 gp ea.)
3. A silver figure of a three-headed raven (45 gp)
4. A silver coffer (worth 100 gp) spilling over with 555 gp
5. A platinum chased headman’s axe (-1 to hit, 2d6 dmg)

The party then decided to explore what was down the steps the steps to the west. The stairs led down to a strange unworldly grotto filled with stalactites and dripping water. A bizarre statue of jade dominated the natural chamber. The statue resembled a monstrous worm and stood nearly 5’ in height. In the worm’s beak and claws were dazzling rubies the color of pooled blood — The Jewels of the Carnifex. Dozens of lit candles, each fashioned with what appeared to be flecks of gold (like the gold flecks that were in Azazel’s ichor), made a line across the room in front of the statue as an apparent thaumaturgic ward to keep the worm and whatever else was further down in the darkness from crossing it. The party was apprehensive about extinguishing the candles, filching the jewels, or crossing the line without first exploring what was behind the doors that they had left unopened in the antechamber with the drum & stairs.

In the antechamber, the party first explored the door on the east side of the southern wall. The short hallway behind the door was choked with roots & moss and opened into a small room. Inside the room was a toppled altar. Flagstones had been pried up from the floor and, underneath the flagstones, was a small vault that had apparently already been looted. The room gave everyone a sense of dread. The hireling, Yancy Knowles, uncovered a pit trap in the hallway as he entered the room. He had been the first to bravely enter the hallway and, subsequently, plummeted to his death.

After a careful search of the room, Patrice discovered a segment of the back wall mural where the clay did not exactly match the rest of the wall. After digging it out he discovered a pull ring that caused the mural to rotate open, revealing a nook which housed the true reliquary.

A large golden box-reliquary with delicate carvings of Carnifex and her court worked in gold was inspected by the thieves and then opened. Inside the box were:

1. A stoppered vial stamped with a sigil depicting a pair of crossed swords.
2. Three silver flasks sealed with corks and stamped with the likeness of a three-headed raven.
3. A tome protected by an ornamented case fashioned from sheets of hammered gold and silver tracery. Three rubies set in a circle around the image of a three-headed raven.

These were pilfered.

The party then proceeded to the chained door to the west they had previously left unexplored. The lock was opened to reveal another hallway choked with vegetation and a madman arduously scribbling runes in blood with the bloody nubs that were once his fingers. He beckoned for the party to come and was refused. The party insisted that he come out, that he was free. The madman refused. After a few brief exchanges, the party then felled him swiftly with ranged attacks and spells. Baptist investigated the chamber and discovered that the madman was trying to lure them into an elaborate spear trap he’d crafted. Baptist discharged the trap to disarm it and then searched the room to find a string of prayer beads crafted from pearl.

Feeling that they had sufficiently explored everything, the party then proceeded back to the grotto with the worm statue. Marquanus the hireling safely crossed the candle line with Patrice shortly behind him. It was deemed wise to leave the jewels in the worm’s claws and beak where they were for the moment, and then the party proceeded down a set of stairs on the south wall of the chamber.

The worn steps led down to another natural grotto and the party found their way blocked by a massive boulder marked with a single large rune and several smaller runes below the larger. There was a pool of water before the rune marked boulder containing three chain mailed skeletons. The runes were deciphered. They read:

DEATH
BOUND TO THE PIT BY THE SACRIFICE
OF FOUR NOBLE LIVES: LIAF, BAUHERM, MAGIN, & AZAZEL

It was inferred from this that the binding ritual to seal the Carnifex was never completed as there were only three skeletons in the pool, and Azazel, the fourth man, had been defeated in the vault above.

The stone was inspected and found to be sealed with 5 distinct segments of wax. One of the party after inspecting the wax thought that the seals had to be removed in the reverse order that they were laid down and after a short and tense series of rolls to earn clues, the seal was broken and the stone was removed.

A long serpentine tail swished through the gloom and a moment later the Carnifex emerged from her prison in the form of a beautiful young woman with flawless, pale skin wearing a hooded cloak. The worm statue then animated and changed to the form of a large raven and alighted on the Carnifex’s shoulder. The Carnifex thanked the PCs for freeing her, gave them each an icy kiss, and raised the PCs Luck by +1, and gave a permanent +1 bonus to a second stat. And then she vanished with the sound of ravens’ wings.

The grotto she’d emerged from also vanished, replaced by a blank stone wall.

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Session 15

With the flooded caves behind them and the Mountain God Ira appeased and Malloc seemingly placated for now, the group was faced with determining just where they were. Using the sun as a guidance, the group believes themselves to be in a mountain range some 65 to 70 miles or more east of the Great City. Glint the dwarf know he is far from the underground halls of his people as the type of rock and formation of the mountains is different.

With choices of heading down towards the valley far below, cliffs making that a hazardous option or contouring around the talus slopes, the group opts to forge ahead in a westerly direction. The travel is difficult and precarious as the group makes their way.

After many hours of slow travel the group reaches a distinctive game trail, with a choice that appears to lead down into the valley or continue in a westerly direction along the talus slope. About this time a lone crow begins circling overhead above the party for several minutes. The crow then flies above the path on the talus slope before coming back and circling. The crow repeats this several times before the group decides to follow the crow and westerly route.

The travel eases, though still cumbersome as nightfall approaches. With help of the crow a small widened section of trail is found where the group makes camp for the night. Watch is set, though the night passes uneventfully.

The next morning the group continues as the valley walls become more akin to canyon walls, stretching above and dropping away below them. The game trail eventually peters out to a dead end with a cave-like opening in the canyon wall. A bridge is visible some 100’ below the trail that spans the canyon to the other side, the canyon floor some 500’ below.

Deciding the cave opening might provide access to the bridge below, the group explores. An iron gate bars the way, a dead dwarf tangled among the bars as if trying to flee. Dwarven runes above the gate state:

Gragton’s Pass. Ye of Dwarven Ancestry Fear Not. Others Beware.

Baptist spends a fair amount of time trying to disable an apparent flame trap and finally succeeds. The lock however proves of fine dwarven quality and is unpickable. Resorting to sheer force and crowbars, the group muscles their way through the iron gate and into the complex.

The group moves into the complex and finds a vertical shaft leading down with ladder rungs bolted into the wall. About halfway down the body of a dwarf is caught in the rungs. Upon investigation the body appears to have the remains of many glass shards piercing his body.

Continuing on the group finds more evidence of dwarves trying to flee from the complex and shattered crystal shards cover many areas. Descending another vertical shaft, the group encounters two unusual crystalline creatures. The group manages to dispatch them, but learns the creatures burst in an explosive array of crystal shrapnel when they are slain.

Finally the group reaches the access point to the bridge. The bridge spans a chasm some 200’ wide and sways in an updraft. Stone platforms anchor the bridge to either side, a combination of wooden slats and thin iron slats forming the bridge. Large birds the size of dogs circle in the canyon.

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Sessions 13 & 14

After the craymites in the chamber at the bottom of the shaft had been dispatched, the party discovered the bodies of two cultists, tattooed and clad in loincloths, floating in the chamber. They also found the body of a petrified thief trapped in the cave wall about 10’ up.

The party fashioned a raft from the bodies of the deceased cultists and began to explore the other chambers. Most of the passageways ended in dead ends and more craymites. And in one of the passages both Sarth & Gonlex were slain. A winding passage that led to the NW ended in what appeared to be another dead end, though it was noticed that the water at the end of the passage appeared to be considerably deeper.

The party retreated again to the upper passage to recuperate from their wounds and rest. During the night they heard voices from the sink hole’s edge and discovered that two strangers, Tsarth & Glint the Dwarf, had mysteriously appeared. After an uneasy few moments, the strangers were invited up and joined the party.

After the party had rested, they climbed back down to the lower chambers aiming to explore the the cavern with the deeper water further. Glint the dwarf proved an admirable swimmer and discovered not one, but two tunnels under the water. After some deliberation with the rest of the party, it was decided that Glint should swim with a rope through the passage to the west. With the rope in place, the non-swimmers were able to make it through the tunnels safely.

The party then found themselves in a large chamber. There was some trouble getting the drenched torches lit. The party discovered a sunken statue of Gelihedres and a floating mud ball that turned out to be the corpse of a demon. Two other living mud demons then attacked the party. One demon was turned, the other slain. After some further exploration of the chamber the party opted to try the other underwater tunnel.

The other tunnel led to the north. The party surfaced in a pool in a carved chamber. A stairway led out of the pool to the west. A napalm trap was triggered in the hallway and Glint(?) suffered some burns.

The party then explored the hallway to the north. They found cultists sleeping in a chamber. With the element of surprise in their favor, the party easily triumphed. They then proceeded through another door in the sleeping chamber to a chamber further west where they encountered more cultists and discovered a secret door.

After exploring the rest of the hallway, another empty chamber was discovered. The hallway ended in large double doors facing west. The party decided to enter the secret door in the sleeping chamber to the room beyond it.

Beyond the secret door they found a large room with the body of a decapitated giant, the skull of Vyache & the stolen Alceon, Bashkim the priest, a priestess, a number of cultists, and a ritual in progress. The party managed to kill everyone and retrieve the items that Ira had sent them to fetch. The items were returned to their proper places.

With no help from Malloc forthcoming and no sending stones in sight, the party began to make plans to exit the mountain and find their way back to someplace other than where they were then.

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Meffridus: Session 12

After discovering the secret room hidden in Ira’s hall, the party stood before three burrows in the north wall. The party entered further into the dungeon through the westernmost and center burrow. Patrice accidentally tripped a wire that released a sizable amount of rubble down upon him. Patrice survived the trap, his quick reflexes allowing him to escape the brunt of the trap’s attack. The rest of the party was left unscathed.

The party then made a course through the natural caverns that led to the north east and ended abruptly at a cliff overlooking an underground lake. The party was making preparations to climb down the cliff when they were attacked by a group of 7 craymites. The craymites with the advantage of surprise made quick work of Sarth, Iomagoth, & Gonlex and would’ve soon made an end of the entire group had it not been for the reluctant Dandelion calling for Yddgrrl’s aid. A root from Yddgrrl erupted through the floor of the cavern where it was promptly magically enlarged as it slayed the remaining craymites. The enemy vanquished, the survivors began rolling the bodies and were astonished to find that none of their fallen companions were actually dead. Nevertheless, everyone was the worse for wear. It was also during this fight that Meffridus took spell corruption and patron taint.

The party found the tunnel from which the craymites had launched their attack. The tunnel was about 30’ up, near the ceiling of the cavern. Baptist climbed up and scouted it out. It was decided, as the cavern in the roof was defensible, that the party should rest there instead of attempting to climb down the cliff. After 8 hours of uncomfortable sleep the party lit another torch to scout what lay beyond the encampment tunnel to the North West. The tunnel opened up into a larger cavern. A sinkhole was discovered in the floor of the cavern, the smell of fish wafting up from the hole. It was also noticed that a rope was secured at the top of the sinkhole and descended into the dark below. The party decided to pull the rope up and spend another day in the dark recuperating.

On the third day, Baptist was lowered on the end of the waterlogged rope down the sinkhole. The rest of the party was given the all clear signal from Baptist and then descended to the cavern below and found themselves standing in two feet of cold water. More craymites were encountered here, but quickly dispatched.

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The Judge: Session 10

With the Gralks defeated, the group chose to rest for an evening in the confines of the now ruined castle from Malloc’s wrath. Recovering the mask the group headed back to the giant tree to see what they could learn from the crazy man.

They found the crazy man pre-occupied with something near his tent and Baptist stealthily made his way across the open area towards the tent. Reaching the area he notice numerous oversized squirrels overhead as he quickly snuck up on the crazy man and applied viper’s kiss to him to lower his resistance.

The squirrels quickly grew more interested and began watching the disturbance as Patrice made his way across the open expanse. Not being as successful, Patrice was spotted by the squirrels who turned their attention towards him as he moved through the area. The giant squirrels threw giant acorns at Patrice out in the open.

Getting struck by an acorn sent Patrice to the ground, unmoving. The group scurried into action with those by the trees trying to gain the attention of the squirrels while still out of range. Baptist retreated with his prisoner while Sarth rushed to revive Patrice.

After another vicious onslaught of hurled acorns the group returned with their prisoner to the treeline. Baptist questioned him intently, learning powerful magics had gone awry between two battling mages resulting in the tremendous growth of the tree.

Deciding the prize inside the tent was not worth risking the squirrels’ vicious attacks the group moved on towards the river. Summoning the riverboat the group crossed and made their way back to Slither’s End.

At the Asp and Tattles the group was treated like heroes despite being questioned about where the other villagers were who had been taken. Given a place to sleep for the evening at the Tavern, the group awoke the next morning and sought out Vokas to ask questions about the sacrificing ritual and the mysteries of the town.

After investigation the group learned the town had struck a deal with Salissak through a local trapper to have the village protected by the Grimmels in exchange for pork and musk melons. Over the years this exchange led to an annual human sacrifice. This is what had kept the town safe for years.

The group learned of a shaman of these Grimmel creatures who had also helped reach the deal. Tracking him down in the swamp waters the group convinced him to alter the agreement for the sacrifice to be an adult as opposed as a child. The shaman agreed to this amendment and explained the deal to Councilwoman Miriam and the mayor.

Feeling the job was done the best it could the group used the sending stone to attempt to return to Mustertown. Just as Mustertown began to come into view, large powerful roots grabbed the group and the words of Malloc said he was tired of being trifled with many requests and Meffridus and Iomagoth owed him a favor. The feeling of vertigo and darkness returned with the group ending up in a natural cavern.

At the far side of the cavern there were 8 skeletal figured laid to rest and one leader type figure on a larger stone. As the group moved closer the figured animated and immediately attacked the party. A fierce battle ensued with the outcome in question for several moments before each undead was finally slain. During the course of the battle the group found a hall of worked stone to the south.

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The Judge: Session 9

With the group at the work camp they hurriedly made preparations to continue north to the compound the woman described. Moving quickly through the swampy woods the group came upon the site.

Two towers rose above the walls of the structure surrounded by walls. A guardhouse stood at the south side of the structure, but several portions of the walls of the compound had collapsed due to the swampy ground. Watching the compound for a few minutes, Baptist spots a guard atop the guardhouse.

Patrice decides to try to sneak to one of the breaks in the wall to get a better look. Having to cross open ground he finds the task difficult and is spotted by the guard. A shout goes up and Patrice is told to stop, which he does.

A brief round of questioning follows with Patrice agreeing to be bound to be escorted into the building. His supplies are taken from him as his hands are bound behind him. As this happens the rest of the group makes use of the distraction to enter the facility through the northeaster break in the wall.

Patrice is led inside through the gatehouse. The remaining group believes they have found the opossumen’s barracks and decide to set it on fire. Using a liberal dosing of oil the barracks is soon up in flames distracting Patrice’s captors.

Patrice’s captors strike him on the head and he feigns unconsciousness as they leave. A crowd gathers near the fire as they futilely try to extinguish the flames. Patrice uses a dagger not found by his captors to cut his bonds as he hides behind a toolshed.

Meffridus and Iomagoth decide to call upon the powers of Malloc to deal with the human guards and opossumen. Making simultaneous pleas for assistance their call is answered in an astounding way. The ground begins to shake as enormous roots below the earth begin to writhe. Large portions of the walls collapse, the towers shake, and fissures begin swallowing up people and then closing back up crushing them. Patrice barely manages to escape a fissure himself as he falls outside the protective area of Meffridus and Iomagoth.

As the trembling subsides a handful of guards remain which the group quickly dispatches. The ooze pit has disappeared, drained via a fissure along with the slave workers harvesting the ooze.
The group continues to the still standing, though now significantly cracked tower and enter. Encountering an ooze spider the group fights it off with Baptist and his crew finally dispatching it.
Inside a set of stairs leads up. The attic is quickly checked by Patrice and a door opened to reveal a shaky bridge across the now empty ooze pit. On the other side Jonas Gralk appears, calling out that she will kill them all if they continue. He begins shaking the bridge as soon as Gonlex sets foot on it.

Jonas is intent on shaking the bridge as some of the group attempt to cross while other fire missile weapons at him. Gonlex falls from the bridge, though he survives the fall. Exuberance and Olfactory also plummet from the swinging bridge to their deaths. Baptist finishes charging across the bridge and bites Jonas, the last of Jonas’ lifeblood leaving his body.

Hearing chanting on the other side of the door, Gonlex breaks into the room and finds the mask wearing woman forming into an ooze beast of some sort. The many ooze tentacled creature lashes out at the group, striking many and sending Sarth unconscious to the ground. She falls under a series of blows, Baptist once again landing the final killing blow.

With the party weak from combat, they recover the sought after mask from the ooze woman and plan their next steps.

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The Judge: Session 8

Recovering the damaged boat used to reach the bandit keep and the bandit’s own small boat, the group heads back up the river to the riverboat docks. Picking up the supposed Gralk trail the group heads north, away from the river.

Working through the small trees taking root in this still swampish water, the group comes upon a scene with a dead villager laying amongst the brush, his death a violent one. As the group notices the vile green paste on the villager’s lips two trees seem to come to life as a small voice shouts insults at the group. The trees advance wielding rusty axes as the flittering voice among the branches continues to hurl insults.

The trees attack with their axes as Meffridus summons forth many snarling roots that even appear to slow the trees down. Others shoot arrows and slings at the trees, though noticing they appear to be doing no significant damage. Patrice hurls oil at the one tree and manages to get things smoldering as the voice keeps moving about the branches.

Meffridus spots what appears to be a pixie of some sort and summons forth more roots to slow the flighty creature down. The slowed trees hurl their axes as the party as more oil is tossed at them. One of the trees begins to catch fire as a well placed shot strikes the flying pixie killing it. At the moment of its death, the trees cease to move.

Patrice searches the other tree and finds a decent sized emerald, while Baptist and his trio gut the pixie.

Continuing north the group comes to a large clearing with a tremendously oversized tree that reaches all the way up to the clouds. Giant eagles float amongst its branches riding the air currents. A small tent appears to be set at the base of the tree. As the group enters the clearing the man begins acting franticly, speaking in unknown tongue and waving his arms as if motioning the group off.

Stepping back into the treeline the figure seems to calm, though he still watches. Stepping back out into the clearing elicits the same reaction from him. Deciding to skirt the giant tree, the group follows a path that stays away from the tree and continues on by.

Finding a rickety wooden bridge the group crosses a small creek that flows down into the river crossed earlier. Hearing sounds of laughter, axe chopping and digging the group sends Patrice to investigate. He sneaks forward and finds an encampment with several human guards and even more opposumen as well as what appear to be several prisoners from the village of Slither’s End.

Patrice falls back to advise the others and the group decides to launch a surprise attack on the encampment. Luck with them as they make a devastating attack on the unaware guards. Between well aimed attacks, powerful magics and the stealth of Patrice the guards are reduced to a lone survivor before his life too is ended.

With prisoners rescued the group asks a few questions of the lone woman apparently not affected by this green paste the others have on their lips. Both women, men, and children have been kept prisoner. The woman explains that Jonas Gralk applies this paste to them each morning to keep them docile and easier controlled. She managed to escape hers this morning. She says they are being used to mine this glowing green ooze from some pits further to the north. She details that there are more prisoners ahead in a walled area and there are another 15 to 20 guards. The Gralks seem to remain in one of two towers in the same compound.

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The Judge: Session 7

The flying piranha threat behind the party the group looks down at the river ahead, docks and a single tower plainly visible. Deciding on the evident course the party approaches the tower, noticing a vividly colored riverboat tied to the near docks.

An older woman with wispy gray hair protruding from under an battered, rusty helmet points a crossbow in the general direction of the group and questions their business. Answering they were looking for river bandits and the missing Gralks, she reveals she is familiar with the Gralks. The lady says Clotilda hasn’t been right since her youngest “left” town. She reports Jonas came by here with her several days ago and headed across the river.

The lady believing the group meant her no harm, let the party pass as another similar helmeted head appeared at the top of the tower as well. Approaching the riverboat the captain Erankus introduces himself to you. After a brief conversation he offers you free passage across The Flow in exchange for rooting out the bandits at the Keep down the river. He offers a longbow and barrel full of arrows for your help.

Agreeing to the deal, the party crosses the river. A small hut sits on the other side of the river for shelter while waiting for the riverboat. The group spots a few tracks that head north from here on a game trail. Noting that, the group heads east along the river to scout out the bandit’s keep with the sketch map Erankus provided.

Approaching the keep the group sees the large ballista used to target passing boats and a lone figure watching the river. Circling around the building a bit, the group also sees the steps leading up to the gate of the keep, flanked by two towers with sentries in them. The massive figure of what appears to be a bear wearing a hat appears to be chained at the base of the steps leading up to the keep.

Meffridus and Iomagoth retreat back to the docks to borrow a row boat and make their way back down the driver, beaching the boat on the south shore before reaching the keep. The pair make their way through the muck of the swap to get a view of the inlet depicted in the sketch. Within the inlet they can see there is a small cave with a small boat docked in the cave.

Just as the pair begins to head back to their boat, the sounds of something large moving through the reeds is heard. Meffridus chooses to summon forth snarling vines capturing the large crocodillo in them. The crocodillo’s movement is slowed as the pair reach the boat and clamber in. The crocodillo closes the last few yards and slams into the rowboat, knocking both into the water. The crocodillo snaps viciously at Meffridus, unlucky enough to be the closest to the great beast. Iomagoth sees little option but to call upon Malloc’s favor. Another set of roots erpupt from the swamp waters snaring the crocodillo allowing time for the pair to climb back into the boat and row safely away.

With the party reunited, the group decides to wait until night and raid the keep at night via the inlet. Letting the current slowly move them along the group near silently reaches the inlet and discovers a vertical tunnel that leads up and into the camp.

Patrice volunteers to ascend first and works his way up the ladder quietly, finding himself in a room with a burly man questioning three, ragged looking individuals. Patrice moves quickly and with his blackjack knocks the man to the ground unconscious in one fell blow. Wasting little time, he uses his dagger to end the man.

Questioning the three individuals Patrice decides to free them from their bonds, learning their names are Baptist, Exuberance, and Olfactory. They agree to aid the others in the fight.

As the others climb the ladder an axe wielding man bursts through the door hearing some of the commotion. The battle is swift as blows are exchanged, the trio of rescued prisoner tackling the man and then biting him as a sword thrust ends that bandits life.

Outfitting the rescued trio, the group makes their way to the ballista where they see three sleeping sentries. Patrice again makes his way stealthily up to the wall and easily dispatches the first, though not without waking the other two.

A battle breaks out and several blows are exchanged, the tower sentries by the gate come to investigate. Meffridus holds the newcomers off with a choking cloud as the others finish off the bandits on the wall. With choking cloud still intact the group turns the ballista and launches it at the wooden gate sending it crashing to the ground. Meffridus uses the still present choking cloud to smother the bear as more clouds are conjured and slings bullets used to put the bear down, still on its chain.

The group then heads to the other location that Baptist said held more prisoners. A cleaver wielding guard answers the door as Meffridus knocks. The group quickly overwhelms the last bandit.

Within the building some treasure is discovered and plundered, the prisoners are freed. Within an hour the rest of the keep is secured. The river bandit threat has been eliminated.

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The Judge: Session 6

The group returns to town after saving Grik’s farm from the Mist Men attack. They are welcomed as heroes as the townspeople are quite excited to have the farm saved. The mayor informs the party that they town will pay for their accommodations for the evening at the Asp and Tattles tavern.

Making their way to the tavern where Patrice introduces himself to Tollybogs, an oversized halfing. He quickly convinces Tollybogs that the town is picking up the drinks and food for the night as well. The group settles in at a large table as more and more townspeople filter into the tavern for a chance to see and speak with the heroes that saved the farm.

As the evening goes on Gonlex becomes quite inebriated and begins busting out various sea shanties much to the acclaim of the crowd. Soon the celebration moves back out to the blood red pool at the center of town where the lectern hangs over the water, looking quite suspiciously like a cage. Gonlex is happy to have a vantage point form the lectern as he sings his songs and allows himself to be led into the lectern. Patrice, Dandelion, and Meffridus quickly take actions to be ready to spring into action should the lectern be lowered. Amidst the excitement, Meffridus is able to secure a rope to the lectern as well.

Moments later the lectern is raised into the air, swinging out over the water as Gonlex begins his last shanty of the evening:

Here me o’ people of muskmelon girth!
Come ye all, of noble or low birth.
Come here the tales of the Grand Charter Co!
Here how save the people from woe!
When the mist men are coming, don’t fret, just grin!
For you can call on your Mustertown friends!
We’ll give those old mist men a boot in their rear end!
So say I, the fearless Bard of Slither’s End!

The waters beneath the lectern begin to froth and churn as something unseen appears to cause the disturbance in the water. While obvious to the others in the group, Gonlex pays no mind and finishes his shanty to the cheers of the crowd.

The townspeople begin lowering the lectern slowly, efforts made by Meffridus and the trio of horses he called for from the stables to pull the rope ensure the lectern lands back on the platform where Gonlex is freed from the lectern.

Meffridus, making use of his horse language, learns from the horses that typically people are lowered into the water. Though the horses know little else.

The celebrations continue back at the Asp and Tattles well into the night.

The next morning the group heads downstairs to find the Mayor and Miriam waiting for them. They explain more about the disappearances of people from town and confirm the rumor that Jonas Gralk was last seen carrying his mother outside of town. The council representatives ask the group to investigate on behalf of the town.

Agreeing the group follows their young guide north of town across some slippery pontoon bridges connecting several small islands together. With a larger land mass just ahead, the air suddenly fills with flying piranha fish and the boy warns the group not to follow him as he jumps into the water and swims south back towards the village.

Dandelion conjures a force disk to help reduce the risk of crossing the precarious bridges and the group makes their way across. The fish manage to bite several of the party members, one enough to send Iomagoth to the ground. Sarth tries to lay hands on the fallen wizard, but angers Pelagia in doing so. The group attempts to roll Iomagoth’s still body and through a feat of luck Iomagoth survived the flying fish attack.

Safe on the land mass, the group looks ahead and sees a wide river flowing with a small stone tower and a quite colorful riverboat tied up to a dock below.

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The Judge: Session 5

Using the most of the time before the fair contests the group heads back the Gralk’s house with the majority of the village preparing for the fair. Cautiously entering the place, despite creaking porch boards, the group finds a tidy workshop with a few potted plants and flowers. The workshop area was meticulously labeled, but several items were missing, ranging from beakers to stirring sticks and such.

A strange substance was found on the work bench, identified as Viper Lilly, a likely narcotic. Taking some time the group manages to scrape up a dose of the Viper Lilly from the residue left on the table.

Moving towards the back of the house the group finds a kitchen and dining area, though there is nothing particularly noteworthy about either. A set of steps leads up to the second floor from the back of the kitchen.

Upstairs is a large great room. One half is a living area with a simple couch and chair with a table. The other half is a bedroom area with three beds. One of the beds appears to have not seen use for quite some time. Near this bed is a shrine that seems to be focused on the portrait of a young girl. Many items are circling the shrine, but a few appear to be missing. From the marks in the dust it appears to be a box of some sort and a small shoe missing from the shrine.

Searching through the rest of the bed room area, the group finds a small coin purse under one of the beds.

From here the group heads to the processing plant where they meet Onus One Arm tending to the pigs. He chats with the group and initially accepts a bribe to tell a little more about the town. But as the group, (er, shall we say Gonlex) begins to make threats he returns 10gp of the bribe, though he stands his ground on not revealing much information about the town.

The group heads to the fair to participate in the contests. The Mayor announces the contests and the townsfolk participating in each event. Several members of the group participate in each, though Meffridus and Iomagoth head off to the tower and then the Mayor’s house to investigate things.

The tower visit does not reveal much as Vokas, though odd acting, seems to carry an aire of confidence. Meeting a dead end there the pair head to the mayor’s house.

Raiding the woodshed for axes the party’s magic users head to the back door and knock. A servant girl answers the door. Meffridus tackles her to the ground. Iomagoth tried multiple times to knock her out, but fails miserably each time as he misses with an axe and his staff becomes tangled up in his cloak. The girl screams drawing people from the fair up to the house as the pair hastily make their exit.

At the contests , Dandelion has a great showing, winning the dagger throwing contest an the foot race around the village that works out to a quite close finish.

As the final contest, the sea shanty contest, is being done, Grik the farmer rushes into town saying his town is under attack of the Mist Men. The Shanty contest pauses and the council meets quickly. They request the aide of the group, who reluctantly agree.

Heading out to the farm, the group comes upon it and finds a thick mist covering the grounds with 18 to 20 men in masks slaughtering pigs and stealing various farm supplies. Charging in to attack the group makes good efforts. The Mist Men are worthy adversaries though as they use small steel tubes to shoot the party members sending two to unconsciousness. Vokas offers support with some very impressive fireballs being hurled into the group of Mist Men.

Soon the mist turns to a field of electricity as it deepens to a red shade. Vokas runs out of the fog which leads to the others to do so as well. The mist explodes in a ball of electrical energy seeming to cause all of the fallen Mist Men and their steel devices to disappear.

Grik the farmer is quite happy to have his farm saved and the group is sure to be welcomed as heroes back in the town of Slither’s End.

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