30days:heartless_bastards

January 3

Here is the introduction to this adventure. You are playing now, so good luck & have fun.

(NOTE: It is assumed that you already know that magic is leaving…indeed, has mostly left…your world)

You have been summoned to an ancient monastery of the now long gone Night God by a message that contained 100 gold pieces and an address, followed by the date you needed to be there for “a very lucrative job”. After enterering the mostly abandoned monastery, you are shown downstairs to a large Demonic Lair by a silent hooded monk. You see there, seated on a large chair made of bones, a demon. Well, he's got sharp teeth and small horns and red skin. Otherwise, he actually looks more human. He's only about 6'8” tall.

“Hello! Thank you for coming. Please, be seated. Brother Arkus, refreshments all 'round, if you please.”

You are seated on very nice comfortable chairs and the demon, who reveals that his name is Jostigor, looks you over. The monk, rolls in a cart loaded with various teas and pastries. After everyone helps themselves, Jostigor speaks.

“Let's get right to the point. I need you four to go out into our sadly underexplored kingdom to seek out the very few remaining magical items of any real power. Once you find them, you will destroy them using a means that I shall provide. In return for your labors, I shall give you each a very large sum of money. Something north of 30,000 gold pieces, not counting potential bonuses I will give you for speed of work and the number of items you destroy. Oh, you can also keep any non-magical loot you find. It matters not to me.

Now, these missions will require a great deal of travel, both by river and overland. Sadly, despite my supplying horses, you will still find that much of your traveling will be on foot. On the bright side, I shall provide you with Brother Kark, a fine young lad who will care for the horses when you must abandon them. He will wait wherever you want him to, unless that place somehow becomes too dangerous. Unfortunately, he cannot speak, having no tongue.

I will, of course, give you some supplies that you might need, as well as a bit of cash. In some instances, I can provide partial maps as well as information about the site you'll be visiting.

You must return here after each successful mission, so that you may be informed and supplied for the next. You will be allowed only two days to rest, but I have potions that will heal and refresh you in that amount of time.

And now, I must let you know that you will not be the only team hunting these magical items. Another team of four members will be working for an old enemy of mine, a wizard. Because of this, time is of the essence and you must also be very careful. I have no doubt that he knows of the same eight items I do and will have told his crew all about you and I. He may or may not have told them to slay you on sight. I leave it to you to decide if you should go that far with them, should you meet. Do try not to meet, however, since it might endanger your mission.

Please do understand that your job will be done in the utmost secrecy, so you should adopt the cover of surveyors, hired by me. The fewer who know about your real mission, the better. Under no circumstances should you tell anything to the army or the royal government.

Now, if we are all in agreement, I have the contracts right here. Any questions before we sign?”

Kayla Pollnow Can you share what the benefit to either of you is for these being destroyed? Wouldn't they be more useful collected?

Doc Cross “They must be destroyed so that their raw power is unleashed. Collecting them would do no good, since the power will fade away soon.”
Phil Lacefield Jr. We are searching for eight unique items? Can you give us a list and descriptions of the items, in case we hear of their like in our travels? /grabs quill

Colin Speirs Surveyors? Surveyors for what? A road, a wall, a house? When you say hired by you? You mean openly? Do we say “Excuse me squire. We're driving a road for the Demon Jostigor, he has a toll-road coming through here to encourage trade in this pocket world of ours”?

Doc Cross “The eight items are as follows: A sword, a ring, an amulet, a hammer, a pair of boots, a small statuette, a snow globe and a mummified head. The odds of you hearing of any of them are vanishingly small at this point, but there you go.
January 3 at 8:47pm · Like Doc Cross “You will know them because they will glow in the presence of the device that can destroy them. And now, here is the contract. We'll all sign in blood, because I'm in a sentimental mood.”

January 4

By now you have all signed the contract, so Jostigor shows you a glove (right handed) made of very fine chain mail. The metal seems to be some strange blue metal.

“This glove will adapt to fit any size hand. You simply put it on, grasp the magic item and it will destroy the item utterly. You will then return to me with the glove at all possible speed. Do NOT wear the glove once an item has been destroyed, unless you desire the nickname “Lefty”. And now, let's find out where you are going.”

As for your status as surveyors, you will tell whomever asks that you are surveying the boundaries of the various dukedoms for Father Larkos of the Church of the Night God. Trust me when I say that they will ask you nothing further, since everyone quite rightly believes that the few members of this church to a dead god are mad as March hares.

And yes, the released power will be funneled directly into me. I have no idea what the wizard plans to do with it.”
\\“You will be going to the Lonely Hill, which would seem to be about 90 miles west/northwest of here, deep in the Greatwood. You will know it as the only hill for many miles around. There is a cave in the side of the hill. That is the entrance to the tomb of the Great Bandit King, who died on the order of 350 years ago. Inside that tomb you will find an amulet. That is the object you must destroy. Descriptions of the amulet vary, but the glove will make it glow. Since this is the tomb of a famous thief, I suggest you be very wary of traps.

Now go with Brother Kark here and start your mission. The clock is, as they say, ticking.”

January 6

You don't have an exact map of how to get to the Lonely Hill, but you do have an old trapper's trail you can follow due west for awhile. You go along it for the first 3-4 hours with no problem, but then you all get the distinct feeling you are being watched.

You are in the far southern range of the Eastward Hills, moving through the Greenwood. The trees are not overly tall, but they are thick and there is pretty dense undergrowth. Somebody could be 10 feet away and hard to see.

January 7

Since you blew it on submitting your turn, you have ridden on until about an hour from sundown. You are almost out of the hills. You still feel as if you're being watched. You set up camp near a small creek.

January 8

After camp is set up, you no longer feel like you are being watched. Dyvim found no evidence of anyone following you on the trail, but somebody was following you on a parallel path about 20 feet off the trail. they didn't leave much sign, but Dyvim is sure that they were there.

Aside from wolf howls in the far distance and a few mosquitoes, the night passes uneventfully.

Dyvim exclaims “What the Elk!”
Alan Portman “We have had visitors. We should take the elk with us.” Yell thank you for the trade in all directions. We should then continue down path.

January 9


After looking at the carven elk and yelling thank you, you get back on your horses and set out down the trail. Things go along pretty boringly for a couple of hours, but as you cross a small clearing, four big humans on horses ride out in front of you. Two have bows pointed at you and the other two have swords in their hands. Their leader, a scarfaced fellow who looks very tough, speaks.

“My my, lads, look at what we have here. I believe these folks are about to donate to our retirement plan. Hands up, you lot, and we'll let you walk out of here unhurt. Naked, but unhurt.”

Two things happen very quickly. Brother Kark starts coughing and seems to then spit fire at the nearest bowman. From somewhere in the woods, a rock the size of a hen's egg clocks the scarred guy on his helmet.

Dyvim runs for the nearest, hopefully distracted horseman, and cuts the saddle cinches, which should dump the riser on the ground. He'll do that with others as long as he is not under other attack or the horses aren't getting violently anxious
Alan Portman Sounds strongly like time to notch a bolt and fire time. I aim for the bowman not on fire.
Phil Lacefield Jr. Sorry gang, setting up our booth at Wizard World New Orleans yesterday, missed the call deadline. Milo leaps off his horse and hides behind the nearest tree, forgetting for a turn or two that he does, on fact, know a spell or two…

In the morning, however, you notice that the dinner dishes you had placed by the fire to dry are not all there. A wooden cup and an iron spoon are missing, replaced by a very nicely carved wooden elk about 6 inches high.

What do you do today?

Wizards of the Coast Dice Roller

Barzel & Dyvim: Make attack rolls

I will assume your two compatriots are cowering in fear.

Kayla Pollnow I will go after the baddies with my warhammer and heal any of us that end up needing it.

Doc Cross Ok, so Alan rolls a 13. You other two roll.

Colin Speirs I stick with my saddle girth cutting strategy, avoiding any rearing or bucking horses, If they start doing that then I'll try cutting the horses in the belly

Kayla Pollnow 2 handing the hammer, 17 hit total 9 damage

Colin Speirs Using Alan's thingy above, that's a 15 from me, unmodded for I know not the mods for the situation I described

Phil Lacefield Jr. I cast Detect Magic. These clowns packing anything?

Dyvim cuts one saddle girth (on the other swordsman), but has to dodge an arrow, so cuts no others. He does get to curbstomp the rider, who fell to the ground.

Hark knock the crap out of the leader who got hit with the rock. He goes down and gets his ankle stepped on by his horse. (bad die roll)

The bowman that Brother Kark breathed fire on actually caught on fire a bit and his horse took off running. He is gone from sight.

Barzel fires at the other bowman and misses, but then, so does the bowman. However, they do get near enough for Barzel to then whack the guy with his unloaded crossbow. The guy turns tail and rides off.

Milo detects no magic anywhere on the to now cowering bandits.

Should you choose to loot them, you'll get 4 gold coins, 9 silvers and 21 coppers. They are wearing pretty battered looking chain mail. Their swords are of decent quality. Their horses would fetch a nice price.

I think we should add their horses to ours if our wrangler feels up to it. We have unseen followers, presumably the elk carvers for lack of a better name. I suggest we stack the coin and leave it for them. We should also yell thanks in all directions. Presuming no response, we should continue on our way.

Colin Speirs I'll go with Alan but no way are we adding the swords to the pile, they go on the horses

If the ruffians have any food in their bags, put it in a sack and hang it somewhere obvious for the watchers

Alan Portman In the absence of an official caller, I am fine with taking the swords.

Colin Spears, any thoughts on trying to contact the elk carvers?

Colin Speirs Do the Elk carvings look familiar to any culture this jaded academic may once have been familiar with?

Colin Speirs If not, pack gear. Hold up carving at place we left coin and food, say a clear “thank you” and continue on our way

January 12

I will assume you put the sword to the two bandits.

The elk carving resembles many of this sort from primitive cultures.

You place the coins and the few bits of food you find in a pile, yell “Thank You!” and ride off, two horses and two swords the richer. You see nobody anywhere.

You now are riding through the flatlands and the forest is still pretty damned thick. you cross several streams and go through a few clearings. In one of them, you are startled to see a large stone statue. The head and one arm have fallen to the ground, but it is undeniably a statue of some great warrior and it certainly predates the founding of Olias by centuries.

You ride for several more hours, until about an hour before sunset, when you stop to make camp. The spot you choose is near a small pond. Checking the pond (or the stream feeding/draining it) will reveal that it has fish in it. There is also a large apple tree nearby.

I suggest camping on the far side of the stream. While not my forte, I suggest checking around the statue for magic items. We should assume our friends are with us.

Colin Speirs Yes, prod Milo for looking at the place with his mystic eyes. I shall give the statue the dwarves once over for quality of craft man ship, hidden compartments, cultural significance. Last first in case it's Tabu to prod it

January 13

Turn Reply: Milo does indeed detect magic, but it is very week and seems to suffuse the entire statue. Other than that, you find nothing magical or otherwise.

You do get the feeling of being watched as you set up camp on the far side of the creek. At one point while gathering up firewood, Barzel could swear that a large oak tree about 30 feet away from him blinked a pair of eyes about 4 feet above the ground. When he got there, he found nothing out of the ordinary. It did creep him out a bit.

You are still feeling watched until after dinner, when the feeling goes away. It's a clear warm night and the forest is somewhat noisier at night than up in the hills.

What are you doing between now (say, 7:30 pm) and dawn (say, 5:30 am)?

Colin Speirs We dance the gay tarantella!

Dunno, will have a brief think

Doc Cross Now I can only see the lot of you dancing merrily around the campfire.

Alan Portman First Contact - Barzel proposes fixing an extra portion of dinner tonight and setting it at the edge of our camp for “the elk carvers” and seeing if we can make contact. Perhaps they can help us on a more formal basis.

Colin Speirs So, yes to a watch. Milo, then Barzel. I'll take last watch.

Yes to a portion of dinner set aside for Watchers, at Edge of our camp

January 15


Reply: Your night passes pleasantly, but you see no sign of the watchers…until, in the morning, you notice the food is gone.

By noon that day, you have passed into the Greatwood. These trees are BIG. You also notice that things like squirrels are big, too. The squirrels & rabbits are easily twice their normal size.

You no longer have the feeling of being watched.

What do you do this afternoon, other than ride along?

Yes to some fireside stories and songs as we dine and settle down

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