Journal Posts

Tag: level_up

Out of the Gray
Collectively, you can come up with a good approximation of the events that took place while in the Gray. When alone, however, your mind plays tricks on you. Sometimes you see shadows where there are none. When you gaze into a looking glass, it is a stranger who looks back at you.

Yet, you are out of the gray. Kalidnay is returned and the tree is safe, for now. The sorcerer-kings are aware of the emergence of a tree of life. Kalidnay is weak and full of immigrants with no knowledge of Athas. Regent Keflyn has requested you seek out and speak with the leader of Tyr and secure an alliance with the free City.
Session: Game Session 49 - Sunday, Mar 16 2014 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Chapter 10: The Temple of Amut-Ka
The priest of Amut-Ka turned to address the heroes, "An age has passed since the awakening of Amut-Ka. With these two sacrifices, I shall bring forth my goddess and restore the green. You are welcome to witness her revival."

Anamis drew forth his blade as Crusher readied for a fight, "This ritual is nothing but defiling magic, friends. Save Rhona and Kelek! Let's burn this dead priest!"

As tired as they were, the party rallied to save their friends. Malla and Hargo kept the mummy slaves at bay while the others tried to break through the skeletal minotaurs and hellions. It was a bloody, vicious, and destructive battle. The heroes held their ground, but suffered grevious wounds before finally approaching the mummy lord. Anamis and Sanguine focused on the mummy while Solaris used his mastery of the way to disrupt the ritual. When he finally destroyed the link between Rhona, Kelek and Amut-Ka, the temple itself began to buckle and weaken. Summoning up what little strength they had left, the heroes grabbed up their fallen and forced their way out of the crumbling temple. Before they found the exit, however, the entire temple erupted in a deluge of sand.

When the dust settled in the wastelands, all was quiet. Pieces of kank and scorpion lay about the place. Littered on the ground were the spoiled remains of the heroes' supplies. As Crusher and Malla climbed out of the sand, they confirmed the fears that Anamis did not make it. Sandy pulled Solaris free, and the rest slowly drew themselves forth.

When Sanguine saw what became of her companion, she tried to turn him using her blood. repeatedly cutting herself and spilling blood into Anamis' mouth; it was all in vain. Malla simply embraced her friend as the others looked to find shade from the sun.

They were almost completely out of supplies and still in no condition to travel. Solaris set about making camp and the heroes opted to rest until everyone was able to get moving. Nearly two days were spent binding wounds and mending the weak. In that time, Crusher fashioned himself new armor from the remains of the scorpions, while Solaris worked with Malla to gather up what food and water they could find. What started with the heroes trying to determine when they would reach Tyr will now continue with them trying to determine if and who will reach the free city...
Session: Game Session: 38 - Sunday, Jul 21 2013 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Chapter 9: The Ivory Dungeon


With Pak'Cha having distracted the guards, the heroes made their way into the inner court of the White Palace. Surprising them all, Solaris' bonding with the athame took them into a dining hall. Obviously not a normal place to find a secret dungeon.

The entrance was hidden beneath the marble table; and what a magnificent mechanical masterpiece it was! As the mosaic shifted into a spiral staircase, the party made their way down into the Ivory Dungeon.

Once in, they set about to finding Hargo and anyone else that might be worth rescuing. After a nasty battle against the dungeon guards--a group of flameskulls, hulking zombies and iron cobras-- the party found Hargo. They figured out how to pick the locks and then located the veiled alliance member. Gendra was her name.

The old alliance member begged to be killed, however, rather than saved. Her death would trigger a magical warning to other veiled alliance leaders. The party refused the kill order and grabbed a few other prisoners; most notably Harbeks old mentor, Nettle and a foul-mouthed elf named "Vulgar" Rex.

As they made their way out of the dungeon, Sanguine heard approaching guards and the party was barely able to hide before crossing paths with none other than Androponis himself! Once he was debriefed by the palace Praetor, the hall was emptied and the heroes once again made their escape.

"Vulgar" Rex suggested the party disguise themselves as Legion guards to make their escape easier. Conveniently, there was a nearby barracks empty of soldiers. While the party changed, Gendra once again pleaded to die. Solaris handed over his carrikal and allowed her the honor of killing herself. Before she died, Gendra tasked the party with locating alliance members in Tyr.

Getting out of the Palace proved to be easy with Crusher in uniform. No soldier was brave enough to question his orders. Anamis magically sealed the gates behind them and they prepared to flee. Unfortunately, they had one final obstacle; Darian Haraxes.

Across the cobblestone road stood Praetor Haraxes, his Justicator braxat, and roughly three hundred of the 1st Legion, including Prelate Lanius. Haraxes ordered the Legion to attack, but Lanius would not acquiesce. He simply stated that he'd always wanted front row seats to one of Crusher's matches. The heroes breathed a sigh of relief as Harbek shouted and charged the Praetor.

It was over in an instant. Magic and psionics clashed while weapons broke and rang out. The 1st Legion stood silently amidst the chaos. Crusher and Solaris focused on Haraxes, while Harbek and Malla kept the braxat off-balance. Anamis drew forth his hellish powers and brought low all of Haraxes' personal headhunters, while landing the killing blow against the praetor. Sanguine was a whirl of blood and shadow, striking at any enemy within her reach.

As soon as Haraxes fell dead, the braxat's mind was free from its prison. The giant beast howled in rage, then fell silent as three hundred spears found their mark. Prelate Lanius nodded to the heroes and took Hargo's athame from Solaris. he placed the sword in Haraxes hand and plunged his own spatha into the Praetor's lifeless body, "It appears we have apprehended the traitor."

Nothing else needed saying. The party made their way to Kaylen's skimmer and off into the estuary they went. Unfortunately, there were three interceptors hot on their tail. "Second Legion skimmers! They're none too happy about us leaving port without saying goodbye!" shouted the captain...
Session: Session 33 - Sunday, Jun 09 2013 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Chapter 7: The Eye of the....Nope, too easy



Yep, and it was awesome.
Session: Session 25 - Sunday, Mar 03 2013 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Chapter 7: Quan's reQuest
Following the battle and a good rest, the party prepared for their trip to Samarah. It would be the last stop for the party before leaving the estuary for the sea of silt. Unfortunately, their hope for a quick stop was met with distractions in the form of one of Crusher's old acquaintances.

Quan One-Eye needed the party's help to save his kidnapped son from a group of house Tsalaxa slavers. The party was reluctant to help until Malla explained that the Templar who killed her mother was from house Tsalaxa. With that said, Harbek was on board and the others didn't want to wait in Samarah for a few days.

Quan's friend Avgar supplied the party with war crodlu and the party was off across the desert. The first day's trek was easy, prompting an extended push into the night. When they did finally stop, rest came quickly and, along with it, an ambush by belgoi!


Jingle bells! Jingle bells!


Although the belgoi made a solid attempt at capturing the party, they were utterly outmatched and quickly put down. With the caller being silenced, any remaining belgoi made a quick escape not to be heard from again.

The next day was hot, but otherwise an easy travel. At least, it was easy until Harbek began to notice pools of ash scattered about the landscape. "Defilers." the dwarf said, as he pointed to a pair of humans mounted upon braxat juveniles. The humans bore Tsalaxa sigils and appeared to be scouts. They were nearing the fort.

Solaris shouted in rage and led the charge. While his assault was mostly successful, both Crusher and Sanguine found the Braxat to be quite the impediment. It took the party working closely together to bring down both the defilers and the braxat. Sanguine considered it a good learning experience for when she got her revenge on Praetor Haraxes.

I'm the Juggernaut, Bitch!


With the defilers bleeding out and both braxat broken, Malla suggested they find a place to rest and mend their wounds before approaching the fort.

Until next week...
Session: Session 21 - Sunday, Jan 27 2013 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Chapter 5: No Good Deed
Post at some point in 2012. In the mean time, here's a puppy

Session: Session 18 - Sunday, Dec 16 2012 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Chapter 5: Ambush at the Dusty Jewel
Hargo's visit to Balic was quite fruitful. A team was hired to survey and protect the cistern, and some contracts were in negotiation for supply. With all handled nicely, he returned to the Dusty Jewel with Harbek, Anamis, and Malla in tow.

The trip across the estuary took most of the day, with the old cog pulling in late into the evening. To Harbek's shock, however, their arrival would not be a peaceful one. The watchtower was burning and a raider manned the polybolos, firing at the heroes approach.

Meanwhile, Crusher, Varis, Sanguine and Solaris were returning from a very prosperous hunt. Not only did they successfully kill five gorak, but they managed to capture a live silk wyrm, as well! Their jubilant attitudes were soon sundered, however, by the sight of the burning jewel. Toph ran toward them screaming for aid, but was brought low by a surprise assailant!

I'm scary... Honestly, I really am.


Bursting forth from the ground came a hunting pack of anakore hungry for hero. The party dismounted and moved to strike, while Varis ran to try and rescue Toph.

Back at the Jewel Anamis was cutting a path to the polybolos while Harbek and Malla focused on the vetran raider. Hargo Vole, however sought out their leader. A dwarf by the name of Clubb emerged from Hargo's hut and landed a few good strikes at the party's employer before making an exit on a nearby silt skimmer. Anamis tried to slow them down with the polybolos, but was unsuccessful. Harbek and Malla found success against the veteran, though they were unable to discern any information from his corpse.

While Crusher dealt with a stray anakore, Sanguine fought for her life. One of the hunters caught her by the ankle and drug the vampire deep into the dirt. The remaining anakore were giving a hard fight to Solaris and Varis, and the elf was taking the majority of the punishment. By the time Sanguine had freed herself, she was too late. While Varis struggled to climb free, an anakore struck him from behind, severing his neck. The beast then made off with his kill while Sanguine and Solaris struck down the other creatures.

By the time the party had reunited at the Jewel, the remaining raiders had been rounded up and the fire was nearly out. Hargo was quick to notice that nothing of value had been taken and it looked more like they were prepared for a fight than looting. Dashing into his hut the old trader found his secret stash had been opened and ransacked. Only one thing was missing: Hargo's Falcata.

Shiny.


With as quick an explanation as possible, Hargo told the heroes why the sword was so important. Firstly, being an iron sword, it has serious value, but more importantly, it was his athame; for Hargo Vole was once Praetor Hargo Vole. Not only that, but he was one of the select few Praetors that the Sorcerer-King Androponis trusted with access to his secret Ivory Dungeon. If the mercenaries stole the sword, it is very likely they plan on using it to free one of Androponis' most hated enemies.

The party quickly packed and shipped off across the estuary en route to Balic. As it turned out, they were ill-prepared to sail a silt skiff and barely arrived with their lives. Once there, the party set to a little business before locating the dwarf mercenary. Firstly, Sanguine and Solaris sought out a buyer for their silk wyrm, while Harbek, Crusher and Anamis purchased a dozen slave-sailors to handle the skiff. They were somewhat successful in their purchases, even getting their hands on a former thri-kreen gladiator.

Sanguine and Solaris also found much success, entering into negotiations with house Thestis' patriarch, Oulestes, an aging, but brutish man. He purchased the silk wyrm and much of the silk the party had harvested, which may have had as much to do with Sanguine's charms as it did her gaze. He invited the pair, and their entourage, to a gathering later that evening at his estate. Thankfully, they had enough money to afford some clean clothes and bathing...
Session: Session 15 - Sunday, Nov 25 2012 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Chapter 4: The Lost Cistern
The kestrekel found the party to be quite indigestible and scattered into the winds while Crusher, well, he crushed the alpha's windpipe. A contingent of the 1st legion arrived to finish off the flock and burn the remaining spider cacti before addressing the heroes. Prelate Lanius was awestruck in meeting the famous Crusher, and the legion provided escort to the great city of Balic.



Once there, Malla was able to track down Hargo's contact and with Varis' help, they narrowed down the most likely location of the cistern. Shortly after the contact left, Varis heard a commotion outside the inn and rushed to investigate. He arrived too late, only finding the contact bleeding out on the ground and Aravek's journal missing.

The party agreed with Sanguine's suggestion to head out that evening, a well-thought plan. Under cover of darkness, they were able to avoid the natural dangers of Athas' heat, while also slipping by some roadside bandits looking for a mark.

Early the next morning they had found the small valley hiding the lost cistern. Vegetation grew wildly about the area, and a strong musty humidity was thick in the air. Inside the cave that made up much of the wind-trap were a group of gith--tall emaciated humanoids--relaxing and enjoying a drink of water. Varis startled them, causing the leader to spring into action. The gith were unprepared, however, and were soundly beaten by the heroes.

"Join the army" they said! "See the worlds", they said! I'd rather be plane sailing.


Before they dropped into the cistern, Varis suggested they keep an eye out for their would-be pursuers. Sure enough, after about an hour of watching, they spotted a group of soldier-slaves entering the valley. The heroes set an ambush when Varis confirmed the leader was a Templar, likely from Urik.

When the party struck, they did so with deft precision. the dwarf conscripts were separated from the rest of the party while Crusher and Sanguine focused on the Templar and his bodyguard. While drawing forth his short sword, the illusion faded showing a gleaming steel blade, forcing a shriek of terror and hatred out of Anukim, the Templar. Recognizing the blade, Anukim sent his gladiator to claim it, but Sanguine tore the man to pieces. In mere moments, the valley fell silent once more.

Beaten and tired, the heroes descended into the cavern to confirm the cistern's existence and stake their claim. Unfortunately, as Malla would soon say, they were not alone. A tembo had taken up residence in the cave, and it was not interested in moving. It appeared to Solaris that the creature may have been smiling when it saw the party, a fact that did little to calm the party's nerves.

F*#@ that kitty!


The beast lunged into battle, moving lightning fast and striking at the heroes multiple times in rapid succession. An aberrant beast of pure evil, it took everything the heroes had to overcome this foe. In the end they stood victorious over the beast's carcass, though Harbek and Solaris would carry wounds that would not heal for some time.

With the cistern now captured and contracts signed, all was done. Hargo met the party in Balic with a big smile and heavy purse. He would remain in Balic for a few weeks to handle more of the business and requested the aid of Malla, Harbek, and Anamis. Crusher, Sanguine, Solaris and Varis were to head back to the Dusty Jewel and handle things in his absence. Things were finally looking up for the party...
Session: Game Session 13 - Sunday, Nov 11 2012 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM
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Epic × 2!
Chapter 4: Building Bridges
The Master-of-Towns was not so eager to be interrupted in the late evening, even less so to find it was the outlaws who summoned him. However, Bruthambar was taken back when he saw Harbek, "Harby!? Could it be you? Why, I haven't seen you since you were knee-high to a halfling!" The party was shocked to discover Harbek was Bruthambar's nephew! Needless to say, he was much more inclined to help once formalities were exchanged. And with Kaina's proof that Sarhan's loans were specifically designed to bankrupt the city and make Shek-mo-Garmin a very wealthy merchant, Bruthambar sounded the alarm.

The party's goal was simple, get into the compound and retrieve Solaris. With all the commotion brought on by Bruthambar and Sarhan's arguing, it was even easier than they had previously thought! In only a few minutes time, the party had slipped in and back out without raising the alarm. After that, it was a simple trip out to the estuary and a ferrying to South Ledopolus.

Once the party had settled in, they set in motion the plan to really mess with Sarhan. Since he had kidnapped Pig Tusk's son, they figured freeing him may sway the giants agains the Praetor. The task itself was easier to talk about than to execute. Sarhan's guards were thralls, slaves that fought to the death. And to the death they went. The giant child was angry at his imprisonment, but Malla was able to calm him long enough to return the babe to his father. In return, Pig Tusk rewarded them with some of his personal riches, including a very well-crafted short sword with a jhakar tusk handle. The Sunspeaker blessed the party with some of her radiant power; sanguine refused the "gift".

A short re-supply in South Ledopolus and the party was ready to head out, this time mounted on crodlu. The trip should be a short four days...


Forecast: Hot with a chance of random encounter
Session: Session 11 - Sunday, Oct 21 2012 from 3:30 PM to 8:30 PM
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Chapter 1: Jakkin's Five
As night fell the group quickly readied themselves and advanced towards Shek-ma-shemak's warehouse intent on finding the contraband and being able to return to Hargo Vole as soon as possible. It took them little time to find the warehouse, a converted arena based on Sardis' knowledge. Sardis was quickly able to point out a secondary entrance to the warehouse formally used for gladiators that seemed relatively lightly guarded and much easier to gain entry through. As they approached Torrin quickly noticed only one slave guarding entrance and acted with great haste to try and incapacitate the guard with his staff during a brief moment of opportunity. Unfortunately in his haste he tripped over a sleeping jhakar and fell flat before the guard who quickly roused an alarm. After subduing several of the guards and convincing the rest that further bloodshed could be avoided by letting them inside for a few minutes the party quickly entered the warehouse. Torrim noted a jhakar near the entrance which was quickly dispatched by Cheeba, The rest of party quickly spreading out looking for the cargo needed. Tak was the first to locate the cargo after climbing atop some of the stored materials just as two more jhakar in the warehouse took notice of the groups presence. Kalinth and Sardis quickly intercepted and handled the Jhakar while Tak moved to handle an emerging threat, a waking guard that was garbed in the equipment of a gladiator and looking to be more then competent in a fight. After a quick fight though the guard and the jhakar all laid dead on the ground and the party gone with the cargo and back in Jakkin's presence.

Jakkin keeping true to his word provided appropriate the necessary supplies to allow the party to return to Hargo Vole with the remains of the cargo they had recovered and the wounded soldiers. As they started their final preparations though they were approached by none other than the local praetor who was looking into the previous night's theft. The group however was successful in avoiding any special attentions from the praetor who was in fact appreciative of the information he garnered while questioning them relating to the purple worm the party had encountered, now knowing why trade had been affected as of late. Soon after the praetor left the party headed out to Hargo Vole's trading outpost.

About midway through their trip back they came across a section of trail with rocks lining either side, Torrim's keen perception quickly picked out though that several rocks had been put in place to supplement those already along the sides forming a bottleneck with no way out but to go through, knowing the trap to be coming the group quickly readied themselves for combat and sprung the ambush and engaged a band of silt striders. Tak and Sardis quickly moved up the left rock face with Kalinth and Torrim began moving towards the right with Cheeba hanging back to prepare the group's special surprise. It was when the chieftain of the striders made himself known with a strong psionic attack that the battle was fully joined. Kalinth, riding the energies of the attack, teleported himself behind the chieftain and engaged him while Cheeba made the parties surprise weapon apparent; Himself riding the Kank they had been previously using to pull their cart. Using the Kank's climbing abilities and speed he quickly joined Kalinth in engaging the chieftain, both quickly working to eliminate the leader of the raiders. It took only a few minutes of combat for the chieftain to fall and the other raiders to panic and try retreating. Tak and the rest of the party began to relax when they noticed that Kalinth was refusing to back down and allow the last of the raiders run away due to it having stabbed him quite viciously in the leg during the ordeal. Cheeba stood nearby and counseled against trying to slay it but Kalinth would not listen. It was then with a mixture of fascination and humor that the group saw the raider make a strike in desperation with such speed and intensity that the dray had no time to properly react, burying its spear deep into one of the arteries in the dray's left leg bringing the large warrior to his knees. As Kalinth struggled to not blackout from the sudden blood loss he looked up in time to see the raider seemingly smile before running off with its spear. After some first aid the party set off again towards Hargo Vole's trade post.

After a few days of travel they finally reached the trade outpost and were greeted by a relieved Hargo Vole who had suspected that the party had been lost to the wastes along with his cargo. The members of the party all smiled at the enthusiasm Hargo seemed to exhibit in greeting their return and settled accounts with Hargo they all retired for some sorely needed R&R, waiting for what things may yet come.
Session: Session 3 - Sunday, Jul 15 2012 from 3:30 PM to 6:30 PM
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Epic!