Rick's Hold

November 13

Still in Riverton, the party continued to do small things like shop and such. Nuati swept through the market, looking once more for valuables to buy, sell, or trade. He passed up a large quantity of owlbear parts however, not wanting to risk his money on something he was unfamiliar with.

The Cleric and Gil went together to buy an expensive set of +2 full plate. Riverton had no Masterwork or +1 full plate, only very expensive +2. So spending all his money, Gorin bought, with the help of Gil, the armor and gave it to his Paladin friend. In return, the Paladin handed the Dwarf his own +1 full plate. This all added up to mean that both the Cleric and Paladin gained in armor protection.

Finally, the fifth day in Riverton arrived and Dimitri’s sword was finished. He gathered his new toy and the group departed, heading for the Capital. The road was well laid out and guarded, with several inns and rest stops along the way. This was for the best, as a storm hit on the second day out of Riverton.

Having elected (and paid!) to travel in a 40+ wagon caravan, the group voted with the majority and the caravan continued through the bad weather. Of course, in the midst of the blowing snow and cold, the caravan was attacked all along its line by a pack of Winter Wolves. They attacked in concert from one side of the road, attempting to panic the group and drive individuals and horses away from the road and their allies. This worked on the Halfling, whose pony panicked and ran blindly from the blindly caravan blindly into a waiting Frost Giant, blindly. Who had been waiting for this exact situation? The Frost Giants, that’s who. (English, mudda fugga! Learn da bitch!)

The party struggled, but managed to removed the threat of nearby Winter Wolves. Dimitri charged around at anything he could see while the Wizard lobbed globs of fire at the monsters. With the Wolves downed, the group focused its attention on the Giant, who had squashed poor, poor Eddy the Pony. Dimitri led the charge against the blue-skinned evil Gargantua, which was a rough fight as the big bastard clubbed the Paladin multiple times with his, um…was it an axe?…before the Basic Six put the Giant down.

While his friends fought their nearby foes, Gil and Morgwais rode up the column, aiming to defend other caravan merchants and wagons who might not be so prepared as his companions.

After defeating the band of monsters, the group looted their defeated Giant and the party found a skilled outdoorsman to assist them in skinning the Winter Wolves, gathering their pelts. The remainder of the evening was spent repairing and reorganising the caravan following the chaos of battle.

November 6

Having defeated their not-quite-so-inanimate foes, the party decided to spend some time preparing for the next leg of their journey. Despite wanting to move quickly, the party wanted Nuati to catch up, Dimitri wished to have his silver sword enhanced, the Wizard and Cleric created some scrolls and potions. The Wizard only went one day, as he didn’t want to pay 50 gp a day in addition to his own costs. The Cleric on the other hand, visited the local temple of Moradin, where most of the Dwarven pantheon was venerated. He was very well received here, as the temple sees few Clerics of Dumathoin. Not used to being the center of attention, especially positive attention from those with real interest in his speciality, Gorin visited the Temple to discuss and work on his magic scroll etc. every day the group stayed in Riverton. Nuati showed up a day or two later, and continued his shopping.

Having reached another month’s end, the party needed to pay their various upkeeps. Some party members had been prepared and set up payments for their followers back home. Others were not so forward thinking and had to have thier payments covered temporarily by the keep. Luckily payments covered are not subject to interest charges.

November 2

The party, returning to Larcos with their rust monster captive, immediately set out to deal with the threat of the intelligent weapons. Larcos too wanted no delay and so led the way to the weapons. The party decided to keep the Cogaloxin out of the fight, as they feared the weapons may attempt to destroy the rust monster, which the group needed to defeat the weapons.
It turned out to be a good idea to leave out the rust monster if for no better reason than that the fight was confusing enough as it is. Upon Larcos entering the ‘arena’, the two sides of saliking swords were about to set upon each other. His entrance drew the attention (of course) of some weapons, from both side, who then came at the ex-paladin.
Seeing their ally in combat, the Basic Six followed suite and waded into a strange combat. Knowing the wielders themselves were doubtfully responsible, the party worked hard to keep the damage done to a minimum and beat their enemies senseless rather than to death.
The battle was long and drawn out, but the party relentlessly pounded their foes into submission. It both helped nid didn’t help that the weapons fought each other as well as the group, as they were not so concerned with lethality. Finally having won, the party fed all the weapons, careful not to contact them directly, to the Cogaloxin, who had been waiting patiently in a big cage outside.
Though useful in this circumstance, the Cogaloxin was still a threat to be dealt with. Not simply a wild beast, the Cogaloxin has connections and origins from the lower planes and is inherently evil. So, having used it to fulfill their needs, the party somberly put down the caged rust monster. A sad day for all. Following the battle, the party parted ways from the Holy liberator and readied to continue on their way.

October 23

Continuing from the last session: the Basic Six burst into the ‘mud-room’ and defeated the “cultists”. Unfortunately, one of the “cultists” died (the Wizard blames everyone else, and everyone else blames the fireball).

In the end, all the weapons were evil, just not all in the same way. They were all originally members of rival thef guilds who turned themselves into swords, and now they dominate people to continue their feud. The group decided it was their task to eliminate the weapons entirely, all of them, despite their desire to own such powerful magic items. Also they ran into an ex-paladin named Larcos whose quest was that exact thing. Very funny coincidence. He informed them that there was a more sure-fire way to defeat the weapons once and for all. This way was simply to feed them to a rust monster, a local monster named The Cogaloxin.

“But aren’t really powerful magical weapons more resistant to such creatures?” the party wanted to know. But of course, this particular rust monster is fiendish, much larger, more fierce and terrifying, and also able to devour magical weapons with ease. What a relief!

But not quite a relief, as the group needed now to capture the big ass beastie in order to use it effectively against the weapons. So off they went, to a not-so-distant location known locally as The Dungeon of Rust and Fire, where this Cogaloxin was known to reside. There they entered bravely and fought it stupidly, attempting to defeat it by rendering it unconscious. This is of course very difficult against a powerful, advanced magical beastie. The Cleric then attempted to lure it to the cadre using an old Iron Cobra’s corpse he had lying about in his knapsack.

Using his new Boots of the Gambol, the Cleric was able to keep his distance while luring the monstrous Rust Monster into the big cage they had brought with them. Once it was caged up they headed back to Riverton and the Ex-paladin Larcos.

October 16

The party made it safely to Taunton, where the party did Taunton stuff (Nuati mostly shopped — typical elf). Just as they were leaving, Nuati suddenly declared he was remaining in Taunton to buy more valuable merchandise. He’ll catch up later.

During the travel sans Nuati the Basic Five ran afoul of a Tendriculous and defeated it. They then continued in relative safety to Riverton. There the group stumbled upon a duel, or the ends of one at least. Afterwards they interrogated a beggar, learning of a sword down a well, which they retrieved, learned it could speak and then learned it was part of some sort of weapon war, where intelligent weapons fight other intelligent weapons.

The sword, named Saberhawk, informed them of goings-on at the local bath house, and so the group travel there. Once there the Basic Six (-1) discovered the ‘mud-room’, where other weapons were trying to kill a weapon allied with Saberhawk. All in all it was very confusing.

October 9th
Percy Keep

Marquis Percy sold out the Basic Six to the third Hag.

The dinner commenced innocently enough. Although Percy seemed especially inquisitive regarding Gorin’s beliefs, the Dwarven Cleric was rather succinct in his descriptions and quickly drew his questioning to a close. This raised his suspicions slightly, as nobody ever really takes note of the Cleric, especially over his brother (“the Loud One”).

The dinner continued, with sumptuous delights served. However, when the Baron’s assistant of some kind came and whispered in his ear, he sent out two of his only retainers from the room, leaving him mostly alone with the Six. This immediately raised the Wizard’s metagamey hackles, and he jumped up, banged his fists on the table and generally made a scene, demanding what was going on, claiming somebody was in disguise, possibly another Rakshasa. Percy assured the group that nothing was amiss, though he did need to depart for a moment (leaving the Six alone in the room).

The Wizard then, having decided the Six had been set up, threatened the Baron should he leave the room. At this point, the jig being up in somebody’s mind, somebody transformed into somebody’s true form, (not a Rakshasa, but still) which was the third and final Hag of the coven the Basic Six had broken, and capturing and then destroying their Hag’s Eye. The doors opened and a few mercenaries descended upon the group to boot.

The battle was swift and harsh, the Wizard blasting away with fireballs, while the paladins laid about with their swords and Nuati shot some bad guys too. Though the Basic Six took some blows and several members got to be up close and uncomfortably personal with the Hag, they soon turned the tide of battle, ending with their ultimate victory. After defeating the big bad guy, most of the mercenaries surrendered, and one of them being a female Halfling, the Rogue of course wants to “hire” her. Nuati temporarily hired the female human, then later made secret arrangements for her to await further employment in Rick’s Hold.

They found the treacherous Baron Percy in a room nearby, who seemed relatively uninterested in the groups’ survival. When threatened and questioned, the Baron responded it was simple business, and he then paid the group double what he was paid to betray them originally. Despite this, the Wizard and Rogue were very upset at the betrayal and took it personally. This led them on a short stealing spree through the Baron’s mansion. They took a couple thousand in random valuables, however the end of the spree culminated in the Rogue, having been made invisible by the wizard and vice versa, stealing the necklace of the Baron right off his throat. (They took it, believing it to be the amulet keyed to the stone golem guardian guarding the Baron’s greater wealth. It wasn’t . But it was still valuable and can be used as a form of signet for impersonating the Baron, so not bad.)

Afterwards, the group headed to the tavern and rented rooms. The Paladins then rode up to the castle and challenged them to send out their best knights for non-lethal combat. Gil unhorsed his opponent with blunted lances, and Krotchlikmieoff defeated his in man-to-man combat, unarmoured, with a training sword. Afterwards they invited the opposing knights back to the tavern for revelry, gift-giving, and general camaraderie.

Taking the gold (and random stolen goods), the Basic Six then left heading for the next town, hopefully less betrayal-y than the last.

October 2nd

Because sometimes, you just gotta do the paperwork.

The group managed to do a few minor things, preparing for their next adventure. Lady Vandertunt figured out where her brother went, so the party is planning a trip to Treinz to investigate. Along the way they were hoping to buy and sell some trade goods, but that’s turned out to be more difficult than anticipated. Nuati gave it a try, but all he manage to do was buy 20 light warhorses for the keep’s men-at-arms. There was also the talk of firewood, and a lot of goats if they would just wait another week, but they decided to just go to Treinz without trade goods.

In the hopes of finding trade goods along the way, the Thief Rogue Thief Halfling decided to bring one of his ships along for the trip. Luckily the river runs right next to the road. The Dwarfs volunteered some of their Dwarf-at-arms to help guard it. Nuati was hesitant to ask his Elves to go, because…well, they’re a little spastic and highly breakable.

And so the party set out, arriving at Percy Keep by the end of the first day and asking for lodgings there. The adventure will pick up next time, at dinner!

Uneventful times
nuttin' happen dunworyabowdit you need a rest guy

Absolutely nothing happened of any consequence that should worry any Dwarves.

Rumblebelly and the Bard managed to make a sort of peace with Argus, leader of the Teamsters Guild. Nuati paid him handsomely for his future services, and gave him a gift of 100 gp from the Rogue. (Argus might have misinterpreted from whom that gift came, however.)

Gil and Krotchlikmeoff had words concerning the future of tuhe keep, its instability regarding “foreign races”, and the preferred future path towards a new age of enlightenment, justice, and goodness by, for, and amongst all.

And some new Elves showed up to live in Nuati’s commune. One’s a Cleric of Corellon Larethian! <glee>

The deterioration of the environment continued unabated….

Oh, and Lady Vandertunt gave the Basic Six their next clue as to the whereabout of her furtive brother. He’s in Treinz! The party gets to go travelling down the long roads that wind towards the capital city, Capital. Nuati is determined to make a mechant caravan of goods to sell at a stopover there.

And also the wild boars had to be killed. They were dying in their cells anyway, and room had to be made for the new members of the menagerie (an evil felldrake and a cantankerous crackerdile), so the best course of action was determined to be the harvesting of their meat while they were still healthy enough to provide sustenance and feasting for many. Huzzah!

September 23

Arriving at the taxidermist’s hall, the Rogue and Paladin (Dimitri) shrewdly and valiantly (respectively) elected to stand guard and stay (not necessarily in that order) at the entrance. The Wizard, Cleric, Bard and Gil continued on, descending into the tunnels, probably sewers and not a dungeon at all.

Stumbling into two unsuspecting guards, Gil charged forward and the others followed, but before a fight could really ensue, the Wizard cast a sleep spell and the guards fell snoring immediately. The group tied them up, looted them and handed them up to their comrades, standing guard above.

The four moved forwards, winding through a few more halls and circular chambers, containing ladders and a central trapdoor in the ceiling, which led to what seemed to be deserted abodes on the dockside. Gil decided to take the ladders, handing them off to Nuati to carry. On the third such chamber, rather than carry a third ladder, Nuati simply broke it, creating less valuable but just as heavy firewood.

They fought another group of thieves, who were summarily defeated and surrendered, without the party taking serious harm. They also fought a crocodile. Which translates in actuality to Gil wrestling the Croc, who pinned him beneath the water in an attempt to drown him (impossible due to his Necklace of Adaptation), while the Cleric beat the reptile into unconsciousness and the Wizard and Bard engaged in a staring contest with one another. Once it was subdued, they passed it up to their comrades, to be added to the menagerie, no doubt much to Irwin’s delight. ‘Cause it’s a Salty.

After breaking into several rooms, rarely on the first try, the group ran into a contingent of three thieves guarding a post overlooking an illusionary wall. One was charmed, the second smoted, and the third gladly surrendered to justice rather than have to engage with a Dwarven Cleric. Our new charmed friend then gave up some information on the area, and then led the party toward their chosen goal, the “Lady of the Lotus”. Eventually the group came to a lavishly decorated room, full of what looked like loot. It was also inhabited by a woman and a small green dragon, very similar to the crested felldrake who resided back at the keep.

A relatively brief dialogue ensued wherein the Bard questioned the woman, Rowan by name. She was a head of the Thieves guild currently operating locally, along with Vanthus. Vanthus was not around. Eventually enraged by the questioning, Rowan called on her drake to attack the group and drank a potion, turning into a gaseous cloud of vapour and retreating through a pipe in the wall.

Worried their quarry would escape, the Cleric cast a dispel magic on her potion’s effects. It succeeded in revoking her gaseous state, much to the horror of most of the group. When her body regain its true corporeal form, it no longer fit in the tiny pipe. She was immediately crushed to death, squirting gooey juices into the Cleric’s face, much to the shock of the party, who stood aghast. Aghast, I say!

The drake fought on regardless, but standing alone it was no match for the four adventurers. Taking it prisoner, they looted the room and nearby areas as well, discovering chests, trapped of course, containing the stolen Vandertunt gold.

Upon departing, they rushed back to the keep to distribute the wealth. Most of which what’s either returned to its rightful owners, donated to good causes or brought back to Lady Vandertunt. Gil had to cover an extra 1200 gold, as the wizard didn’t want to give up his purloined gold and had taken several statues and valuables as his share, which were probably stolen property in the first place but no Dwarf bothered to seek out their rightful owners. The Wizard also decided to attempt to ‘befriend’ the new felldrake, though he is clearly of an evil bent and unlikely to ever change. Doubtful anything good will come of that. But he hates Elves and so does the Wizard, though the Dwarf has yet to knowingly try, and has no desire, to eat them, unlike his scaly acquaintance.

And Nuati levelled up to 8 at last. Charm monster, bo-yyyyy!

September 18

The group, already in the dungeon, continued on their path of destruction. They waded through a room of Ghasts, led by a Huecuva Cleric, without any hesitation. Paladins leading the charge, the party swarmed into the room, fireballs were thrown, and in short order the undead monsters were formally destroyed.

Following the fight, the party took stock of their situation and realised to their amazement that not one of them had taken any wounds in the combat. What a shock! (Guess there’s a first time for everything, even for Gil.)

They continued through the dungeon, finding several empty rooms and a couple of rotting corpses. The bodies all had tattoos of a dragon and a lotus flower. Nuati recollected this symbol being the emblem of the newly formed “Lotus Dragons” thieves guild.

Before leaving the dungeon, the group ran afoul of an Earth Elemental, which they crumbled into earth. Taking whatever redeemable loot they could grab, the group fled the subterranean gallery, briefly stopping at their keep.

On one of the corpses, the group had discovered a note, laying out the location of the miserable rotten scoundrel, Vanthus Vandertunt. He seems to be hiding out in a complex beneath the taxidermist’s hall in Rick’s Hold.

And so, the party proceeded to the taxidermarium, where they intimidated the shopkeep into revealing the whereabouts of a certain “Lady of the Lotus” with whom the group has now resolved to speak.


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