In this thread, we continue our journey in which our party (yet unnamed), embarks on an epic quest to thwart the assault of the Red Hand army on Elsir Vale, racing to prepare for the assault before the might horde ends the world as they know it.
The game is a long-term d&d campaign that run on the 3.5e system. It is mostly played on this board, with partial support on discord. General details of the campaign can be found here: >>132102 →
Now, the party left off at the end of the evacuation of Drellin's Ferry, the townsfolk fleeing ahead of the advance of the horde. The Red Hand forces are mighty, and the party has been able to accomplish little to hinder the army, although the vengeful fury of a certain giant and his granddaughters may have bought the villagers some time, as distant sounds of thunder echo from the hills.
In part one, the party learned some vital information, from the the Wyrmlord Koth's notes, map, and conversations with many characters along the way >The Red Hand horde means business. If it is going to be stopped, that will have to be at Brindol, the only place in Elsir Vale with a standing army large enough and the fortifications necessary to have a chance against such a large force. >Monsters are blocking the roads to the north, blocking any chance of reinforcements for Brindol >One of the leaders of the Red Hand is in the ruined city of Rhest. >The horde is going to steamroll the towns east of Drellin’s Ferry and keep going. >A powerful wizard named Cromar is retired in the Blackfens A partial archive of Part I can be found here: >>133942 →
>>139428 Double nigger. Henry said this last thread, but your take might be different and more reasonable. >>139331 → This was the response he got >>139425 → Aral would probably just go along with it to be honest, so what you say matters here.
>>139429 "It's pelt looked nice. Must be worth something."
I would also like to say that most of Drellin's Ferry is already pretty far ahead, having been evacuating for the past couple days. The part of the caravan that the goblins attacked was mostly composed of the stubborn merchants that Norro Wiston only barely convinced to abandon their property. There were actually a couple other groups of hobgoblins that the town guard fought off, hence why Captain Soranna didn't participate in your fight.
You could probably catch up with the rest of the caravan if you rode through the night though. >>139429 Yeah... I did not expect it to go down that quickly... It was a practice dragon though, so maybe next time you guys won't get skullfucked by the next glorified lizard (spoiler alert: there's gonna be more dragons) >>139430 Yeah, the dwarf you sold the owlbear pelts to helped you treat it before he skipped town. It makes for a kickass cape.
For the record does the party want to ride through the night, right? How far do you want to go? Assuming the Red Hand is on foot (which most of them would be, logically), you can assume that it might take them a could take them a couple more days to get to town. You could also rest if you wish. >>139433 You are in Drellin's Ferry, in the evening.
>>139435 Hmm, if we rested there would be a high risk we would get our slumber party crashed, so i think it would probably be better to move ideally, unless sleeping in the burning town would make for nice marshmallows. >>139436 I like the sound of the masterwork long sword.
>>139436 Jorr took the liberty of taking the curative steaks and rawhide chews for his dogs. They would have nauseated any humanoids anyway, being meant for worgs, by goblins.
"Raiders." Jorr says, gruffly "Looks like these bastards were some o' the ones harrassin' merchants on the Dawn Way. I reckon they came 'ere to get first pickings o' the loot before their comrades arrived." >>139437 The town is not burning. Only a couple houses.
>>139436 Aral takes and counts the arrows (I believe the normal ones were 40 arrows). Puts 3 Alchemist's and 3 Dragonsbreath arrows in his current quiver. He also cast Detect Magic on the loot, sharing his findings with the others. >>139437 The throwables are very nice too. Consider taking some.
>>139438 Well should and could we set it on fire so the goblins can't ransack anything that's left? >>139439 Not sure, how far is Brindol and how long would it take before we needed to camp? >>139440 I think i'll take the flasks of acidic fire.
>>139442 [1d20+14 = 29] Spellcraft And might as well try to identify those 2 elixers I have. Also yeah, taking all arrows, 6 of the enhanced ones are in the current quiver, ready to be fired. I have been actually tracking the currently equipped 20 arrows in combat, it just never came up so far.
>>139441 >Not sure, how far is Brindol and how long would it take before we needed to camp? Idk. It's about 9 PM in game time. You cannot reach Brindol in one day. The nearest town is Terrelton. You could probably reach it by morning on horseback, although that means you'll need to rest through the day (arcane spells require 8 hours rest; humans need sleep).
Pic related is Lord Koth's Map, btw.
>>139444 With digits like that, you can cast it on 6 houses, without moving.
>>139445 One of the potions appears to be Enlarge Person. Another looks like Reduce Person. Or, so you think, judging by the auras.
Gonna paste my spells so i can find them later. 3rd level spells: Magic fang, greater Call lightning 2nd level: Bull's strength Heat metal Barkskin 1st level: Calm animals Faerie fire Entangle Produce flame Cure light wounds Level 0: Guidance Detect magic Flare Purify food and drink Mending >>139446 So should we camp here then?
By incredibly rough estimate, it would take you around 10-12 hours on light horses to get there. I need to check the map though...
Also, by now, the conversation with Wiston and Soranna would have ended. Before he left, Wiston would have given you some basic info about the way east. Also >What’s the best way to get up north? “Well, normally I’d say the Old North Road. But right now, I wouldn’t recommend that route. You could take a boat up the Rhestwash to Lake Rhestin. Your other option is to head east toward Brindol. At Talar or Brindol, you’ll be able to cross the Elsir River and head north along the Rhest Trail. It’s up to you. The river route is probably more dangerous, but it’s faster. If you head east, I can give you several horses. If you head north from here, feel free to take any of the boats moored in town. We won’t need them.”
So, yeah. You guys can head east, and then north if you want to. Everyone has a horse, in case they didn't before.
>>139452 Okay. Hamfist, due to his character's earlier request, has scavenged several bottles of cheap ale that the hobbit who runs the bar decided weren't worth carrying. He has passed out drunk in whatever house you guys are in.
DAY 9: END
Now, what time do you murder hobos want to get up in the morning?
>>139473 >Rolling an 18 for Aid Another Guess it wasn't such a good idea to let the Telepathic horse do the talking afterall...
Okay, Chad succeeded on his Aid Another check, but Aral and Hamfist failed. That means it's 8 + 2 Aid Another + 1 Guidance + 1 Pretty Mare, which comes up to a grand mod of 12.
The woodsman remains unconvinced (and somewhat confused) by the horse's word, but shrugs as he looks at the burning buildings in the distance, and then at his dogs beside the party. "I got some business to take care of a bit past Terrelton. I'll ride with you boys along the way." he says
>>139482 I also need some time to prepare arcane spells as part of the long rest, don't want to miss out on that, but otherwise, yeah, I do that. That was a crafting check, but should be 17, I realized I have no tools.
Okay, so the party gets up, prepares spells, and sets off on the dawn way.
Do you guys have a preferred riding formation? Who's on front?
>>139483 You find a set of cheap tools in a crawlspace in one of the buildings, found because elves always receive passive checks to find trap doors. Also a leather sack that looks like it was emptied in a hurry.
By this point, you're only four hours into your journey. The afternoon sun beats down on you; the air is hot and still. The sparsely settled lands of Elsir Vale are starting to grow monotonous, with a seemingly endless line of dusty flyspecks of towns. You're still not out of the woods though.
Okay, that was quite the encounter. Ngl, the point of this encounter was to be easy, and showcase the fact that not every gang of humanoid warriors roaming around the vale is made of up fanatical veterans.
Aside from the Red Leader, a mighty warrior, these hobgoblins were nothing special. These were lvl 1 mooks, even weaker than the Regular samurai you guys have been fighting, if their rusty, meager equipment is anything to go by. The Bladebearer, however, was quite loaded. I will roll his equipment shortly.
The dead hobgoblins do not have any sort of paperwork or relevant information. Jorr, who only survived by the skin on his teeth, rolls splendidly on his knowledge check. He communicates gruffly that these must have been mere raiders, prowling the countryside for easy loot.
It is close to noon in game time. With all of the fleeing villagers, marauders have been getting bold enough to attack travelers in broad daylight. Perhaps a bit too bold though, as they were no match for seasoned adventurers.
Before you lie two unconscious enemies. One is a low-ranking hobgoblin, only a meager warrior, not even a fully-fledged samurai. It was grappled into submission by Jorr's dogs while its allies abandoned it. "So the Red Hand employs low-level scum like this. Guess 'dem Red boys ain't all high an' mighty now." Jorr says, nursing his wounded canines.
The other is a hellhound. You'd need a character with the right knowledge skill to tell anything about it.
>>139504 >Okay, that was quite the encounter. You can say that again. >Ngl, the point of this encounter was to be easy, and showcase the fact that not every gang of humanoid warriors roaming around the vale is made of up fanatical veterans. Turns out you were underestimating the enemy. >>139506 >The other is a hellhound. You'd need a character with the right knowledge skill to tell anything about it. What would that entail?
>>139510 Aral does not know anything about hellhounds, but he does know that this creature is not native to this world, but must have been called in with magic. Closer inspection reveals Draconic traits on this particular specimen. It appears like a naked dog, only scalier. It's forepaws are hooked into talon-like toes, and its hide is tough and scaly. If it were an animal, it would be a Drakken (Dragon-Descended), but you don't know what to make of this one.
So, new information is revealed: >not all of the Red Hand's Forces are as formidable as they seem >However, within their ranks are mighty warriors who's strength rivals your own >the Red Hand appear to be using alchemy and drugs to enhance their forces >the Red Hand is not only allied with fiends from another world, but seemingly draconic ones
Okay, due to some players being busy on the holidays. We will not be having a full session today. DAY 10: 4:00 PM Terrelton is a dusty village that gets by on the livestock and leather trades; several large. foul-smelling tanneries sit in the hills east of the town. The local in is known as The Brass Dagger. Supplies can be bought at Esper’s Market. Checks will need to be rolled for additional information. It's a small town and has no map. Please don't make me draw one.
>>140374 And I completely forgot to describe myself... Let me just fix that. The guy you see sitting there is a human of around average height, wearing scale armor and a very oddly shaped helmet that appears to be made of platinum
>>140374 Your church only told you to warn Drellin's Ferry of impending doom, foretold by a-ranking priest in your order. However, it seems as though the town has already begun evacuating before your arrival, and the whole region seems to be on edge for the impending war.
Right now, you're feeling a bit disillusioned. You are now certain that the vision that your superior had was a genuine one, and not just some excuse to get rid of you; however, you've received no further orders, and are contemplating what to do now. From some gossip you've picked up, you're aware of "a massive horde of goblins coming" from the West, and supposedly a blockade stopping the roads to the North.
(btw, you came from far East of Denovar, which is East of Brindol).
The Inn is unremarkable, and rather sparse, many of the clients having packed up and left in advance of the horde. Nobody stands out except for >>140376 a lone man in scaly armor sitting at a table in the corner.
Aral, Chad, and Hamfist are all gravely wounded, and will need to rest for several days without access to magical healing (unless Chad spends all of his spell slots tomorrow). You have heard that a certain crusading Cleric of St. Cuthbert has been investigating the Merchants' Guild in this town, however; perhaps you solicit them for healing services.
If any of you would like to know more about the Merchant's Guild, roll Gather Information (just a Cha check), or Knowledge (Local) as an Int check.
>>140380 You don't know anything of real value, but since you've been to Terrelton before, you know that the town is governed by a Merchants Council shot through with connections to various gangs of brigands and highwaymen, but a crusading cleric of St. Cuthbert is working to clean up the council by exposing the misdeeds of the criminal members. The corruption in the (((Merchant))) council is an open secret, but since this is medieval times, nobody before the Cleric has bothered to lift a finger to oppose them.
Henry approaches the rugged looking character and sets a bottle of rum down in front of him while uncorking another for himself. “What’s your story, stranger? You look like you’ve walked down some hard roads.”
>>140404 Still the lowest one, as that is enough to put Aral at full HP. Assuming we got to that part already: You get a "Thank you, cleric" from him, but that is about it. No hellos or pleasantries. It seems he's about to just get up and leave without any further word. Fucking unbelievable. As he turns, he stops mid-motion, absent-mindedly trying to wipe away at a patch of blood on his cloak, before realizing it's not about to come out anytime soon.
>>140429 You make your way to the merchant's council gathering. It's a large but shabby building, a foul smell emanating from the general area. The building is visibly lit, but sparsely, as if by someone who cared more about saving oil than common sense. In front of the building, you see an angry-looking woman, somewhere in her mid twenties, clad in chain mail, with an absurdly long scroll in her hands rolling across the floor. She appears to be giving a severe tongue-lashing to two very tired looking guards. As you approach you hear "What do you mean 'the forum is closed'?! It's supposed to be an emergency meeting, and by order of the founding guild doctrine, all emergency council meetings are to be made open to the public. I demand to see your manager!" >"Ma'am. We're sorry, but we have orders." "I'm not going anywhere until I find out what happened to the public's donations!" >>140432 I have been operating under the assumption of it.
>>140443 With a check like that, you easily recognize her holy symbol as that of St. Cuthbert: God of Truth, Wisdom, Law, Justice, and Common Sense. You recognize it so easily because you saw the church of St. Cuthbert when you passed through Denovar. From this, you can assume that this is indeed the local crusading cleric named Leille that the (((merchants))) have been whining about recently. She looks quite angry. The guards look frustrated, tired and vaguely frightened by the persistent woman, who is still reading down along her comically long scroll.
>>140449 The woman pauses her rant as you approach. She speaks politely, her demeanor turning on a dime. "Greetings, Sir. I am Leille (lol, i forgot her surname), Knight of the Cudgel."
The guards seem still frustrated, but mostly just tired. >"I'm sorry, but we've got orders not to let anyone in while the council is meeting. Try again tomorrow." "This is ludicrous! Just what are they doing in there that has to be kept secret?!"
>>140451 (towards Leille) "Artorias Greenmarsch, cleric of the Platinum Dragon." (towards guards) "I refuse to believe whatever's going on in there is more important than the goblin army that currently has dragons in its employ currently coming this way, so if you'll let us in to properly explain this fact, then I won't try to drag you out to be used as meatshields." Diplomacy if necessary: [1d20+11 = 21] Intimidation if somehow diplomacy fails: [1d20+2 = 14]
>>140453 One of the guards sighs, visibly giving up to the fact that his job will probably be gone in a couple days anyway. >"The council is inside dividing liquid assets for the town. They insisted not to let anyone in." "Liquid assets? You mean the gold that Brother Derny donated to the poor yesterday as the refugees from Ferry were passing through? So that's what this is all about. I'll have a word with Mr. Goldberg if he thinks he can get away with lining his pockets again." >[audible groans] >"Ma'am, we have orders-." >"We [i]had[i/] orders." The other guard says, as he picks up his satchel and promptly walks off into town. The first guard stares after him for a few seconds before deciding that dealing with this lady is above his paygrade and follows suit.
>>140453 The priestess seems satisfied that she's been able to get in through technically-legal means. She looks towards Artorias. "Thankyou for that." she says, not specifying what for "I think I can handle things from here on out. The council can be a stubborn bunch, but they're quick to turn to putty up close." she continues, brandishing her light mace in one hand as she enters the building.
Nimon Gap is 25-30 miles away. One day's travel at the speed of Artorias's Horse. Nimon Gap: A tiny hamlet located at the place where the Dawn Way descends out of the Nimon Hills, Nimon Gap grew up around a large walled inn known as the Cross-Eyed Beholder. The folk of Nimon Gap grow apples, pears, and chestnuts in orchards sheltered below the hills, while shepherds and goatherds keep their livestock in the heights.
236 gold pieces 1 Lapis Lazuli 1 Onyx Iron Samurai Mask (70 gp) Electrum Cloth Vest (1800 gp) Silk Hunter's Cap trimmed with Sable (70 gp) And the biggest Blue Diamond you've ever seen in your life.
14 cure light wounds potions +1 Dragonfang Heavy Pick +1 Banded Mail Masterwork Hide Armor, Dragonskin 10 dragonsbreath arrows (kept forgetting to use those) 5 fancy arrows made of what appears to be ice(?) on the Red Leader Silver Unholy Symbol of Tiamat
Okay, I guess I'd better get this going. I'm not really prepared today though, so it might be unproductive and cringe.
Now to see how long it took you guys to get to Brindol, and if any villages have been burned in the meantime... >totally forgot to DM Jorr's sidequest Whatever. Jorr, assuming Artorias spent one of his remaining spell slots to heal him at the end of that encounter, eventually tells the party that he's been searching for family members that left a small home on the outskirts of Terrelton. He suspects that some of them might have joined the caravan to Brindol, but isn't sure how they stayed ahead of the party so far. It's also why he's been so anxious lately.
Btw, what we learned last session, to get it through your thick PC skulls: >in wake of the horde, hobgoblins have been raiding the countryside with increasing boldness and frequency, attacking merchants and refugees alike >The Red Hand is not to be underestimated, for their ranks hold powerful combatants >NPCs with x4 Crit modifiers and PCs below lvl 8 don't mix well... >Red Hand regulars tend to scram when their leaders are killed (so focus fire) >Warbands in the Red Hand sometimes include priests of the Devil Tiamat
What we gained: >More loot than this encounter really deserved for its CR >1 prisoner: a low-level sunscorched hobgoblin Cleric of Tiamat >muh glory >misc stuff that wasn't even mentioned in the lootpile (leather armor, longswords, longbows, arrows, stone unholy symbols, dirty clothes) What we lost: >1 Party Member: Henry Hamfist (revival pending) >some hit points >some spell slots >Jorr's dignity as a competent archer
Okay, you guys reach Brindol early in the morning of Day 13. I kind of regret glossing over Talar, but I'm going to have to cut down on the number of encounters if this game is ever going to be finished in a PbP medium.
>>140873 Unless you plan on doing something retarded, a Red Hand prisoner is reasonable. Here's the game map, with marked dots, because a little bit of metagaming doesn't hurt anybody. >>140874 Sorry, still skipping reading what it's like when you arrive in Brindol... And finding my notes for the NPCs.
The cathedral of Pelor is easy enough to find, being a large, fancy building with lots of windows letting the light in. You would get there taking 10 on a Gather Information check, when I'm ready.
Okay, this session isn't going anywhere until well-after i read Part 4, re-write it to fit in Part 2, and plan notes accordingly... It's kind of SOL at this point. Sorry, I really wasn't prepared today.
Going back, the party would have tried to interrogate the snarling goblin thy captured before reaching Brindol, because he would have been a pain and a half to transport.
At first, the hobgoblin was completely hostile at the sight of the Platinum Helm, but after a 27 diplomacy check his attitude has improved to Indifferent, and he merely glares at Aral and Chad.
>>140879 "Alright buddy, I get that you don't like me and I sure as shit don't like you. However, I've already helped you out by not letting you die to a few dogs and some other monster, so how about you help me out in return? Do a good enough job and I'll even let you go."
>>140881 "Okay, then tell me what I want to know and I'll gladly let you go back to getting mauled by animals. Otherwise, you're being dragged with me until you give in even if you're kicking and screaming the whole way. As for what I want, it's information. What are your goals in all this?"
>>140883 >>140882 The goblin cackles even louder, sounding like a turkey as he gobbles curses in his own language "Gobgobgobgobgob! Bold of you to assume I fear death. Better to die at the hands of the enemy than be sacrificed on the altar of Tiamat." >What are your goals in all this? "Your Doom!" he hisses, before falling back into gobbling laughter “You may have won today, stupid humans, but our day is coming! The Red Hand will destroy you all!" "[Gobgobgobgobgobgobgobgobgob!]" "The human river-town has already fallen. And soon the town of walls shall meet the day of ruin!"
>>140887 "Let me be more specific. I got the whole 'death and destruction' idea from you sending out a massive wave of goblins. What I want to know is what else specifically you hope to accomplish with all this, because I refuse to believe that a horde of you greenies would mass up to this size for purely shits and giggles, as much as that would fit your kind. Are you trying to summon Tiamat, or something else entirely?"
>>140889 "Thanks for nothing, there. Next question, what kind of numbers are we up against? I don't care if you give me some rough estimate with one real number and a bunch of zeros or an exat headcount of all of you, but some noghing answer like 'a lot' or 'enough to drown you fuckers in' will just result in me asking until I get that real answer.
>>140893 Int check in place of untrained Knowledge (Religion) (or planes, or whatever applies) How the fuck does summoning a god even work? Would it be an avatar or something? Can Aral even guess at it? [1d20+5 = 19] Also to determine whether he even understands how bad this even is, if nothing else.
>>140897 I don't know if you put points into knowledge religion (but I mean, you are a cleric, so you have it as a class skill) But if nothing else, the aid another is like: Roll the same skill, if it's higher than 10, then you get to add a +2 to the other player's roll. You might be better off to just roll your own tho.
>>140894 The goblin, possessing high Wisdom but rather low Int, is glad to continue berating your with unintelligoble slurs and let info about the Red Hand slip as he continues to threaten you with Doom He gobbles in laughter "Gobgobgobgobgobgob! You have no hope! There are too many of us! Thousands of us march from the human river town as we speak! The giant-ones have joined us, and dragons soar overhead. Saarvith readies to end the swamp elves, and soon even the Lion King will follow us! Gobgobgobgobgob!" the goblin divulges, stupidly >>140896 >>140899 Summoning a monster is one thing, summoning a god is another. Sustaining a god on the prime material plane permanently is unheard of, but would be apocalyptic if it occurred. In any case, it would involve the powers of a mighty spellcaster, and a sacrifice of great value. It would be a truly apocalyptic event, were it to unfold.
The hobgoblin cultist suddenly looks nervous, as if he's said too much. "B-but, he isn't doing anything important there. Who is Saarvith anyway?" >>140906 Elsir Vale is home to a powerful lich, commonly known as The Ghostlord, who resides in an ancient temple devoted to lions. The Ghostlord is only spoken of in legend, but his power is said to be unmatched.
>>140907 "Nice try, faggot. Anything else you'd like to share with us, since I'm sure you now realize that you can't dig yourself any deeper, or would you rather take it up with your countrymen the next time we see them?"
>>140909 "She may await you, but first you gotta check back in with her gatekeepers. So, would you rather be executed for treason because you were a dumbass, or because you actually committed treason?"
>>140915 Sorry, not high enough to get plot relevant info. The DM says with a sigh of relief. However, you do know that "The Lion King" is another name given to a horrible monster that haunts the Thornwastes. It is a region that no other druids in the vale dare approach. >>140917 Roll a Dexterity (pissing) check, add your base attack bonus. Horse form gives a +4 racial bonus.
>>140917 >>140918 Fair enough. I tell the gobbo "Then I guess you're dying a dumbass." and put him back wherever he was while we were transporting him while we were between towns. As for what to do next, why don't we take all this info over to Pelor's bros and see if they can help us out with any of it, assuming >>140920 somehow turns up nothing
>>140920 [Sighs] I really shouldn't be telling you this before part 2 even begins, but I already spoiled in in that ghost-nonsense encounter, so...
The Druids of the Tiri Kitor are old enough to have told you about something called a "Blighter" a wicked ex-druid who has turned against the natural order. The Ghostlord, or "Lion King", is one such Druid, a mage of unmatched power who haunts the Thornwastes. >>140922 (dubs) The Cleric is completely covers in piss. He REEEEEEEEEs a mighty REEEEEEEEEEEEEE as Jorr's dogs join the party.
What we learned today: >The Red Hand are fanatical followers of the devil Tiamat >The horde has already begun marching from Drellin's Ferry >The unknown lord of the horde has ambitions that surpass the conquest of Brindol >Red Hand veterans and cultists fear not death, for they mean that deserting means sacrifice on the altar of Tiamat >Int is a dump stat for Clerics >Elves in trouble >McGuffin in the Blackfens(?!) >The "Lion King", a monster of unmatched power, may join the fray >>140926 Now I read this book and do some work for class registration.