Journal Posts

Chapter 9: Drej Raiders
Post up tomorrow.

Session: Session 30 - Sunday, May 19 2013 from 7:00 PM to 12:00 AM
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You good?
"Are you good?"

Solaris looked down at his mangled arm, raw energy coursing through and around it slowly knitting and restoring the flesh upon it, leaving sections of it look pink and raw. He took a long drink of broy from the skin he held in his other arm and thought of what had happened. They had been presented with the opportunity to eliminate a threat to the Dusty Jewel, a local shek had reason to dislike Hargo Vole and it was believed by Jakkin he would soon formulate an assault upon Hargo. Jakkin believed that if they were to eliminate this shek in public the threat to the Dusty Jewel would be no more, and he would also be able to secure a better trade position from which to do business with Hargo as well. Solaris found himself surprised at how little discussion there had been before the group had agreed to eliminate this shek, noting that he suddenly relished the idea of combat with things more familiar and less like the abominations they had faced not long ago.

"Solaris, are you ok?"

Solaris remembered the fight vividly. The absolute speed and ferocity that Pak'Cha had moved with, the seeming joy Crusher exuded at the prospect of taking on a Rage Drake with his bare hands. The barely restrained hunger Sanguine unleashed upon their target and his seneschal. He then remembered the power.... It was during the fight that a sudden uncontrolled surge of power nearly overcame him and Kalinth. He recalled Kalinth's panicked reaction to the sudden flaring and the psionic entity trying desperately to channel and regulate it before it consumed them both. In a sudden moment of clarity, Solaris channeled the energy into his trikal, wreathing it in lightning, and lashed out at the nearby rage drake. The power suddenly leapt forth from his weapon and in that instant a connection was formed between them and the drake. In that brief instant Solaris and Kalinth completely overloaded the poor drakes mind with uncontrolled confusion, rage, fear and every other emotion the poor creature could feel and stampeded it towards Sanguine, who then managed to completely rip the head off the beast in a display of untold savagery.

"Solaris, are you alright?"

Solaris remembered suddenly being collared in a mancatcher pole by the drake's former rider and the savage feeling of joy that came to him at the prospect of destroying the person at the other end of it when the rider, in a fit of tactical insight, used the pole to steer Solaris into an attacking Sanguine. Pain coursed through his shoulder as Sanguine struck him with seemingly clawed hands, a ragged hole nearly being punched completely through his shoulder by the force of the attack. In her fury she continued her assault, ripping and clawing flesh from his arm until Solaris released a defensive burst of power startling her out of her frenzy with the sheer rage contained within the burst.

"Solaris, What is wrong?"

Solaris thought of the shek sitting in the middle of the market place, his entire retinue dead and he himself utterly alone. He thought of the ease at which he and Kalinth slipped a simple thought into the beaten shek's mind and the satisfaction he felt as the shek carried it out... "Kill Yourself."

Solaris then felt a hand upon his uninjured arm and looked over to see Sanguine standing next to him, cautiously touching him, "Are you good Solaris, Are you ok?" Solaris lightly smiled for a moment before taking another long drink of broy before placing his good arm lightly around Sanguine in a gesture of camaraderie to show he held no ill will towards her, "Yeah Sanguine. I'm good."
Session: Session 29: Bound for Balic - Sunday, May 12 2013 from 1:00 AM to 6:00 AM
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Epic!
Alpha Predator
I am tired of the path being barred, blocked, and obfuscated. If I learned anything down in the darkness, it is that I am an alpha predator, and it is time that our enemies learn that.

Those that get between me and my goal will quickly learn that.

Those who threaten me and mine, will quickly learn that.

Unfortunately, Haraxes will never get the chance. The Bloody Sand will rise up and swallow him whole.

Sleep well little praetor, and dream happy thoughts while you still can.
Session: Session 29: Bound for Balic - Sunday, May 12 2013 from 1:00 AM to 6:00 AM
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Epic!
Chapter 9: Bound for Balic
With successful return to the banks of the Estuary, the party took advantage of their newfound wealth in the port of Samarah. With their purses emptied and their bellies replenished, Sanguine was eager to get the party moving. Jakkin, however, had other ideas.

Since the group was hoping to invest in some cargo for shipping, Jakkin made them an offer they couldn't refuse. Take Shek-mo-Garmin out of business and Jakkin would help supply them with a skimmer full of trade-goods. He would also ensure that Praetor Thalnus was properly compensated for his lack of involvement.

It was a simple job in both plan and execution. Shek-mo-Garmin believed himself to be all powerful in the city. His cart was pulled by trained rage drakes. At all times, he was accompanied by his lady, some sort of psionic. He was ill-prepared, however, for the skill level of the party, and quickly found himself bleeding out in the bazaar with no aid to come. Solaris nodded to a spear on the ground and suggested Garmin fall upon it.

That was the end of Shek-mo-Garmin.

Jakkin made good on his deal to supply the party, though at no loss of wealth on his part.

The party then packed up and set out for Blackroc fort with a full skimmer of goods and friends...
Session: Session 29: Bound for Balic - Sunday, May 12 2013 from 1:00 AM to 6:00 AM
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The Fire Dancers
Crusher walked down the dusty streets of Samarah, heading to Quan's ranch on the outskirts of town. He wanted to check in to see how the retired gladiator and his son were doing. He was also looking to invest some of the coin he had earned recently. Gladiators with wealthier patrons were sometimes given enchanted items to improve their performance, such as bracers to increase their striking power or gloves that made it harder for their opponents to escape a grappling hold. Quan knew the trick of making them. Crusher had never been given any such item, but he had seen them in action in the arena, and well knew their effects. After barely surviving the ordeal in the ancient temple and battling the monstrosoties within, he was eager to seek any advantage in future combats he could gain.

The sounds of lively music drifted down the streets. Curious, Crusher followed the music and soon found a dancing troupe, accompianied by a small band, performing in the streets to earn some coin. Such sights were common in the cities of Athas, but something was drawing a larger crowd than usual to this troupe, and Crusher could hear gasps of awe coming from the audience. He easily pushed his way through the crowd to get a better view, and saw what had so impressed the onlookers. The dancers' bodies were aflame with tounges of bright fire. As he drew nearer, he could feel the heat coming from them, and realized that this was no illusion, though the dancers were unharmed as they continued their performance. Crusher watched on, mesmerized.

As he watched, he began to recognize some of their movements. They were similar to the moves that Pak'cha fought with, though adapted to entertainment rather than combat. Crusher opened his mind to the Way as Pak'cha had taught him, and sensed the psychic energy the dancers were channeling through their movements. The energy seemed to flow through a red gem that each dancer had sewn into their costumes, and from there ignite into flame. Crusher recognized this a ki focus, similar to the bazraag fang he used to channel psychic energy into his strikes.

Eventually the flames extinguished and the dance ended. One of the dancers, a young woman, approached Crusher with a sly grin on her face. "I saw you watching. Liked what you saw, I take it? How about a small donation?"

"Actually, I was thinking more about making a purchase." Crusher fingered the red gem sewn into her tunic.

The young woman tensed up briefly, then relaxed as she realized he wasn't talking about buying her as a slave. "Aww, you figured out our trick? These gems are our livelihood, I doubt you could afford what it would take to get one of us to part with one."

Crusher reached for his coin purse. Most would be wary of carrying so much coin openly, especially in a distracted crowd such as this one, but Crusher paid little heed to pick-pockets; few of them were brave enough to steal from him.

"I wouldn't be too sure about that," he said as a wide grin broke across his face. He felt sure he could duplicate the dancers' fire generating technique, and imagined what would happen if he did that while grappling with an enemy...
Session: Session 29: Bound for Balic - Sunday, May 12 2013 from 1:00 AM to 6:00 AM
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Epic!
Harbek and the spirit-seed
It was an afterthought on the way back to Balic. Harbek still felt that fire deep within his spirit, stirring up his emotions into disarray. His encounters with the giants at North Ledopulous had lead him to believe there was a chance of a new pact. The might of the giants would bolster the strength of the twin settlements. Their focus changed... towards building reputation! All with his uncle leading, with the wisdom of a dwarf.

All those thoughts of a new day, vanished after leaving the temple. Harbek kept asking himself if he could remember any giants in Balic. A far'fetched idea, out of desperation.

"Desperation...?" Harbek thought to himself. "I've never been desperate. I focus my strength, maybe charge forward in a rage, but never needing to kill. I always wanted it THERE'S A DIFFERENCE!! Solaris and Sanguine may have some insight. I've seen them under the influence of something, not acting like their usual selves. Maybe they can help, after I get some rest."

Waking midday, after his late night shift, Harbek realized he had taken for granted his luck in the temple. It was an honor to have come in contact with those primal spirits. Something that will likely never happen again. But the seed remained. For all that had happened, was happening and will happen, the seed had to be found. In order to do so, he had to control his urge to hunt down giants.

"Solaris, when you have a minute, find me. I have something to ask you."
Dice Rolls => Results = Total
d20 => [20] = 20
Session: Back to the Dungeon - Sunday, May 05 2013 from 7:00 PM to 12:00 AM
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Tags: giants , Primal , Solaris
Epic!
Chapter 8: Out of the Darkness
Will Update Later.

Suffice to say, stuff happened.
Session: Back to the Dungeon - Sunday, May 05 2013 from 7:00 PM to 12:00 AM
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Free at last...
AS they step quitely into the open air, Pak'cha feels a weight lift off of him. They were all alive. They were outside. Anything else could be dealt with.

As Pak'cha takes in the sight of the numbers arrayed around the exit, he sighs inwardly. This was either going to be a very long fight, or a very short one. Either way, he wasn't looking forward to this..

Following Anamis Black, he silents edges to one side, as Sanguine steps forward, and angrily starts talking with the people around them. Pak'cha warily eyes those closest to the small girl, ready to leap forward, and begin the destruction of any foolish enough to come within a quick lunging reach of his clutch mates.

A startling second passes as a massive... thing appears next to the little blood drinker, and begins to speak. Nearly leaping to defend Sanguine, Pak'cha hesitates as Anamis motions him into stillness.

They talk, as Sanguine is wont to do, and though Pak'cha doesn't fully understand what is happening, he gets the sense that maybe this fight isn't going to happen after all...

It's good to be outside again... But now comes the task of making our way home!


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Along the trip home, when he isn't working to guide the skimmer, Pak'cha divvies out the loot, emptying most of it from his bag, counting out coins, and tallying up approximate costs, struggling with the sheer amount of wealth he was carrying around. He finds Malla, and Sanguine, and asks them to come below deck.

"This is the total of what I've been packing around. And this is a rough estimate of what we'll need, for the journey back to the Jewel... Is there anything else we may need from Samara before he depart?"

He has Sanguine draft a list of items that may be useful:
Torches x 10-20 to be left on the skimmer
Survival days x ??? (To supplement whatever is left at the Jewel)
Ruck sacks x 4(One at least for each party member who doesn't have one)
Boat repairs x ???
Any personal items, or weapons that need restocked
Anything magical that will be of use



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Pak'cha finds Anamis, and lies out what was left of the eye stalks of the large being. "Is any of this going to prove useful still, or did I carry this mess around for no reason?) He keeps the stink of the severed bits kept at bay by stuffing them into an empty sack aboard the skimmer.
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A fine mess you all got me into...
Harbek addresses the party, after forcing them out of the room away from the sleeping danger.

It's time to recognize who is going to get you out of here, ME!! Who's been right ALL along? ME! Who's been guiding us, higher and higher? ME! I'll admit to stepping on one trap, but that's it. There's a lesson in humility that needs to be learned, so if ya need a five-er si'down and can it, because I'm teaching the lesson. Are you ready?

In order to get out of here, we have to go up. And that dinky little hole in there ain't gonna do it, 'cept maybe for sanguine. So... Let's all go back up those stairs, and take a look. You don't like what you see? Too bad! We came back down to waste more time and watch Pak'Cha cement his claim to the title of living ten foot pole. UP is the way out. When you're below surface, and there is a way up, take it. You could spend hours, days, even weeks digging sideways, getting nowhere but deeper.

I can't take all of ya, and I think I'll need you all in the rooms above, but I'm begging you all to heed my advice before we lose our light, will and sanity. It may not even be in that order. So what's it going to be? Up or nowhere?
Session: Session 27 - Sunday, Mar 24 2013 from 7:00 PM to 12:00 AM
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Epic!
Chapter 8: Backtracking
Harbek quickly discovered that their previous path was now blocked. A cave-in, likely caused by Whelm, forced the heroes to find a new path. Thankfully, there were many others to choose from. Unfortunately, one of which was full of dead bodies.

The party chose the path less necromantic, and they made their trek back toward the upper tiers. There were only a few minor delays, and the poisonous air, being expected, was not nearly as dangerous this time around. Eventually, they found themselves back in the room full of strange, stuffed felines, and chose a new doorway. This led them through to a partially crumbled chamber with yet another hostile surprise. An amphisbaena had made its home in the rubble and struck out against the party. Despite having (two) nasty heads, it was quickly dispatched and the party found stairs that took them up.

Their elation was short-lived. Only one door at the end of a passageway was found. What they saw inside brought forth a terrible scream from Sanguine. The chamber was rife with the necromantic aura of the Gray. Harbek reluctantly closed the door, and the party made their way back downstairs. Since that way was blocked, they chose the another doorway. This time, they discovered another primal spirit. An ancient tree rooted in brackish water barred their path. It lashed out and attacked when they came near, but recoiled when it realized Harbek was a primal warrior. Calling itself Xilonen, it explained that it was a tree of life, long since corrupted by Zotzilaha's evil magic. It apologized for the attack, and begged to be destroyed, but not before pleading with Harbek to locate and protect its seed.

They held up in that room for a long rest. Each was too exhausted to continue. They had been traveling in circles with no end in sight. Crusher did his best to calm Malla's nerves. After far too long in the darkness, Harbek struck up a torch and got everyone moving again. They had one final door to check; hopefully it was a way out.

As they entered the small hallway, Pak'Cha grew impatient and moved to open the door, hoping for an exit. His rash behavior once again set off a trap, awakening a number of ancient constructs. The guardians struck hard, but were brittle and easily destroyed. Finally, after all their trials, they had found...

...Another dead end. In this hallway was some sort of shrine; a huge statue of a giant-like creature lay at one end, and a small well of reddish liquid lay opposite. In the moth of the giant statue rested a large feline. Tacked along the walls were the flayed skins of humans, left out to dry... Harbek shook his head, "We should've gone through the gray."
Session: Session 27 - Sunday, Mar 24 2013 from 7:00 PM to 12:00 AM
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I must escape
As darkness fades the memory remains, Biblios’s outstretched hand reaching outward to lay claim to my soul. In that darkness there was only helplessness, with deaths embrace descending like a guillotine. Somehow I live, but I now know that death means only slavery.

Anamis pulls himself off the ground and into a kneeling position. His head feels like its splitting apart and there is a severe lancing pain in his neck. He reaches up and touches the flesh, feeling two distinct bite marks. The skin is ravaged, it was not a neat bite.. Anamis can feel that something is wrong with the wound, but he has other issues to worry about.. He shakes the dizziness from his head, and stands to his feet.

Anamis’s thoughts turn inwardly, as he contemplates what has happened. His thoughts race madly as his inner voice searches for answers.

How has Biblios broken the ritual? It was I who stole his demonic essence! There was no bargain, no pact, I pledged nothing to this Devil to hold sway over my soul! The ritual I performed was correct, but something must have gone wrong. He may have found a way to corrupt it, but that should not be possible.

In any case I may have found a way around this issue. It appears that Sanquine and these other creatures have unnaturally long life spans. They appear incredibly durable, and possess unique powers that could complement my own. This may not be the right path, but I must find a way to escape his claim on my soul.
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Epic × 2!
Dire Straits
Harbek wasn't accustomed to asking his traveling companions to stop for his sake. Slow down, maybe, though it was now a thing of the past. Harbek was moving quicker now. Whatever the reason, he just was, and it was a good thing to him. This place they had been locked in, for two days now, was getting to him. The death of the primal beast, Theoak was in a poor condition and worst of all that cursed axe. No exaggeration, it was literally cursed.

Harbek approached Solaris as they were heading to the teleportation circle. "Solaris..." Harbek said rather softly for his normal composure, "I didn't say thanks back there, and that's not right. You cured me of that axe. I don't know what I would have done, otherwise. That curse is worse than anything I've ever encountered." Harbek sighed and lowered his head to contemplate his next words, noticing his still cursed and infected flesh.

"When we get back to the Dusty Jewel, I'm going to find a way to repay you. Not just for what you just did, but for what you've been doing for all of us. I don't say this lightly, but you're a good fighter. You're always there for whoever needs it most." *Clears throat* "Thank.. you... Ok, looks like your turn. Ladies first!!! Ahahaha, no but really, hurry up I want to get out of here."
Session: Session 26 - Sunday, Mar 17 2013 from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM
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Tags: Curse , Defiling , Solaris
Epic × 2!
No escape
Again, answers are so close and yet so far away. I now understand that I am not prepared to receive what I thirst for. I have not yet earned that right.

Are they what I am to become?
Have I surpassed them?

As I am right now, I cannot demand their attention, their answers and truths, but next time, I will be prepared.

I will sharpen the mind, and make savage the body.

I am close, but not there yet.

I am however worried about Anamis. There was an...aftertaste in his blood that reminds me of Tlacaelel's blood. The bite wound that looked as if it might be the end of him has not healed as my...for lack of a better word, feeding, ones do. I have, from time to time, considered the possibility that perhaps I am contagious, but any mind I have set to the idea has proved fruitless. Over a hundred years of evidence support that, but perhaps...perhaps I am just not powerful enough, something that no one who took part in that battle can say of Tlacaelel.

With whatever mind, body and soul I have remaining I hope that Anamis will not suffer the same fate that I do. Perhaps, in a way, he longs for it, but whatever fate awaits him, it will prove far kinder then my existence.
Session: Session 26 - Sunday, Mar 17 2013 from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM
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Epic × 2!
Chapter 8: Tlacaelel's Prison
The imp Anamis summoned was helpful in mapping out the halls for them, but limited in usefulness since it could not open doors. It did, however, provide them with the most likely path out of the temple, though there were still obstacles to overcome...

One of which was a pelota game. The ancient worshippers of this temple must have participated in the game as part of a ritual, and the game itself was animated. When Crusher lifted the strange ball, it came to life and began moving for it's scoring sphere. naturally, the party wasn't about to lose a game, and quickly set about forcing it through their sphere. As it turns out, what they lack in overall combat effectiveness, they make up in pelota teamwork.

With the game ended, the ball vanished and the party continued on their trek. Coming to a large pentagonal room, the party found an ancient calendar of some sort with a hidden passageway behind it. Inside, they broke a seal and entered what appeared to be a model city of some sort, likely similar to what was above them now. In the center was a sarcophagus that opened upon their entering. Sanguine did her best to fool the creature into believing she was Tlocas Popolacas, the vampire they encountered previously, but Anamis' interference made the vampire lord suspicious. He summoned his wight servants and the battle was joined.

The fight would have been easy were it not for the weapon the vampire, Tlacaelel, wielded. A warhammer of dwarven make, exuded power. A constant humming could be heard throughout the chamber, which exploded with a thunderous clap when it struck its target. The combined might of the party was able to overcome Tlacaelel, however, and Sanguine made no plea for his life, this time.

Harbek took up the hammer, which seemed to accept him warmly. The hammer had been asleep for too long. It needed to continue it's reason for existence... eradicating giants.

After a brief rest the party continued their search for an exit. They happened upon what appeared to be a teleportation circle. They could not tell where the portal went, but figured it must likely be a way out. The heroes cautiously agreed to go through, with Crusher giving Anamis a very clear promise of pain if things went badly.

Pak'Cha exited first, finding himself in a familiar room; one with frescos depicting war and the building of a temple. The air was once again burning his tracheal system. They were back in the lower halls. Anamis tried to revert the portal, but it appeared to be a one-way circle. They would have to try and retrace their steps, again...
Session: Session 26 - Sunday, Mar 17 2013 from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM
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Epic!
Pak'cha curses silently i...
Pak'cha curses silently in kreen as he steps through the portal, back into a familiar room, the air stinking, and cutting deeply into his scent pores. He shakes his heads, and looks around, sighing inwardly as his clutch follow suit, and step out of the pictures on the wall behind him, and into the foulness. He shrugs idly, and motions towards the same door they went through the first time. "We should start again, the last time we came through here, it was very difficult to make it through, and though we've done it before, there is no sense in waiting any longer then we must.
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"Without the others we would not make it through here again. Anamis has given selflessly, as have the others, lending me their strength. Instincts do not replace a clutch. Even if they are not Kreen."

"But they are not Kreen, and so not a clutch.."

Pak'cha's training overrides the voice of instinct, shutting it out firmly. "Be silent! They are my clutch, and none of us have died, despite your doubts! When Instinct is needed, then you may act, but until such time I will not listen!"

********************************

Pak'cha forges ahead, resettling the pack on his shoulder, taking long breathes, thinking to put off some of the poison in the air, recalling how badly it hurt last time her was in this foul stench.
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Epic!