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Thread: The Journal of Nathril Stoneshaper

  1. #21
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    Default Road to Elmwood, mid-day

    Dry-Heat 14:

    That afternoon our small caravan rolled uneventfully southwest across the plains of Solamnia. We had split into two groups after our ferries reached the far bank of the Vingaard. Squal, Stabelina, Artor, and Kalen formed a small party about two-hundred yards ahead of my group composed of Luthen, Azure, Simone, and Kaylee – who was still perched on my cart and chattering away. We had decided it was best to travel in two different groups because of the effect Simone’s cursed ring was having on some of the others. Those of us in the second group seem to be immune to the effects. That’s why we’re taking this journey to Elmwood – to enlist some divine help and see what can be done about this ring. We’ve learned that there is a monastery to Majere located somewhere in the Darkwoods, just south of Elmwood. Since this is on the way to Solanthus anyway, we’ve decided this slight detour is for the best. Better to be rid of this ring as soon as possible.

    As the sun set, the sky turned a deep shade of blue as storm clouds gathered overhead. Evening quickly approached and I can’t say I wasn’t grateful. Had my first encounter with the kender’s sticky fingers a little earlier. She asked me if I liked to carve wood, which was an odd question. Amongst all her prattling she had never asked about my hobbies; she was generally more interested in playing her flute and writing songs. Turned out the little thief had swiped my dagger – which is what prompted her to ask the carving question. Got it back easily enough, considering my family name is carved on the bottom of the hilt in Dwarven. Need to keep a closer hold on my belongings before this kender walks off with my underclothes too.

    Luthen spotted the first group stopping to set up camp for the night, so we did the same thing a few hundred yards away. A light rain was falling and I was glad to get off of my hard wooden cart for the day. After I had my cart and mule secured for the night, I wandered a little in search of some wood for the fire. Luthen needed some fuel - keeping a magical fire burning in his hand all night would become a little tiring. As I was gathering wood, the rain started to pick up. Out of nowhere, I was blinded by a flash of light and thrown through the air. Haven’t felt anything like it since I was hit by that runaway cart in Palanthas when I was just a beardling. Didn’t know what was going on for a few minutes, but I smelled burning hair. Azure came running over and told me I had been struck by lightning as she laid her hands on me and healed my blistered skin. Kinda’ feel proud, surviving a lightning bolt and whatnot, but it was an experience I could have done without.

    Since I was wide awake from the lightning, I volunteered for first watch. Good thing the lightning was only weather-related. Wasn’t really in the mood to slay a dragon.


    OOC: The lightning incident was pure comedy. Tauren rolled a weather-related random encounter (or something like that, maybe he can explain more than that). Lo and behold, who would get struck by the lightning - one of the shortest guys in the party! I'm not sure how deadly a lightning strike is (in D&D terms anyway) so I guess Nathril was lucky to survive. I don't even remember how much damage he took - I just remembered the unlucky shipmate who was fried by the Priestess of Zeboim's lightning bolt a few days earlier.

  2. #22
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    Originally posted by Nathril:
    And for the record, Tauren can play a kender like it's his job (well, it is since he's the DM, but anyway...) He just turns on this innocent little kid mode without being annoying (for the most part anyway). It seems to be his most natural character, in my opinion.
    Thanks! Someday I'm going to get to play a kender PC and its going to be my greatest day ever.

    I'd also like to mention how Simone's cursed ring nearly nixed Artor's chances of becoming a squire too. That first day the party arrived in Gaardhold Artor met with the garrison commander there and inquired about becoming a squire. This was a tough choice for Arclight role-playing wise, mostly because he was like 6th or 7th level and still not a squire (this is what happens when one grows up under Nerakan occupation). However, Artor would have really liked to have his father present for such an occasion, but since no one even knew for sure if Artor's father was still alive he decided to try. He had to pick three character witnesses (the knight was already pretty sold on the the tales of Artor's adventures so far) and chose Simone (the paladin of Majere), Luthen (the wizard), and Stabelina (the gnome).

    As a DM I started giggling manically inside my head because this meant three people affected by the curse of Simone's ring were going to be stuck together for a very important proceeding. All someone had to do was fail a Will save. Plus, Squal (the NPC ranger) got his feelings hurt when Artor didn't pick him as a witness. They'd started to develop an almost sibling relationship at this point, but Artor had his reasons for picking who he picked and managed to patch things up with Squal.

    Anyway, the next day Artor and his three witnesses were awaiting for their respective audiences with the knight when Artor himself failed his Will save and attacked Simone (take that Honor-Bound feat)! As everyone slapped their foreheads and I laughed like a crazy person Luthen and Stabelina sprung into action. Again Stabelina surprised everyone by wrestling Artor and Simone apart long enough for Luthen to telekinetically pin Artor to the ceiling (I think the gnomish mystic might have used a bull's strength spell here). Naturally, this is when the page entered and was very confused by what he saw. Fortunately, Luthen smoothed things over and the rest of the afternoon went off without a hitch.

    This encounter prompted the players to start taking a more active role in avoiding the curse's effects (as they understood them) to prevent stuff like this from happening. Good times.
    Last edited by Tauren_Kai-Jere; 10-29-2007 at 10:23 AM.
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  3. #23
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    Originally posted by Nathril:
    OOC: The lightning incident was pure comedy. Tauren rolled a weather-related random encounter (or something like that, maybe he can explain more than that). Lo and behold, who would get struck by the lightning - one of the shortest guys in the party! I'm not sure how deadly a lightning strike is (in D&D terms anyway) so I guess Nathril was lucky to survive. I don't even remember how much damage he took - I just remembered the unlucky shipmate who was fried by the Priestess of Zeboim's lightning bolt a few days earlier.
    Yes, I can elaborate! I was just using the random weather table in the DM's Guide. That evening things went from hot and muggy to stormy with a severe case of lightning. As other DMs out there probably know the percent chance for someone getting hit by lighting is very, very low. It just seems that my dice like to make Nathril's life difficult. Although he won the prize I remember thinking he wasn't in much danger aside (from being embarrassed again).
    Last edited by Tauren_Kai-Jere; 08-29-2007 at 02:01 PM.
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  4. #24
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    So your evil PC-hating dice torture and maim as well as kill, huh Tauren? Some dice you got there. :p
    "And that blockhead Rukin.. he might not be much of a thinker, but he can kill things well I suppose..." Argent: Cleric of Silver Master. ICRP Key of Destiny.

    "Well I'll be a pickled dog-turd," Rukin grunted.

  5. #25
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    Bah! Who wants a game of free XP and happy fluffy bunny encounters? All you players tease and complain about the DM's mean nasty dice, but you'd be secretly disappointed if everything went your way in a game! You wait, one day when the rolls start inexplicably going your way everyone of you will be to paranoid to enjoy it! So says Tauren Kai-Jere!

    *cackles and vanishes in puff of smoke*
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  6. #26
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    I don't think Stabelina used bull strength, I think it was just a matter of I rolled well and Arclight rolled poorly. I think she even climbed over the table and was probably on it to pry Artur off of Simone. Probably all while trying to not look at Simone or her ring... Dang Simone and that ring...

    It's been a really long time since all this happened! It's fun to read this and remember all those times we thought we were going to bite it and then the times that people did! Thanks for doing this, Nathril. ((Weird to call you that... :p ))

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by pirategirl
    Thanks for doing this, Nathril. ((Weird to call you that... :p ))
    No problem! I've had all this stuff written for a couple of years now and the only other person to read it has been Tauren. Reading everyone else's campaign journals inspired me to post this one, so hopefully people are enjoying it.

    Personally, I'm excited to get to the encounter with a certain death god, but it will be here soon enough.

  8. #28
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    Default Road to Elmwood

    Dry-Heat 15:

    The group woke as the sun rose and broke camp not much after breakfast. We continued across the plains towards Elmwood for the better part of the morning; still in our two groups from yesterday. No trouble from Simone’s ring so far, so our theory seems to be holding true. The first part of the group was still traveling about two-hundred yards ahead of us when suddenly; our quiet, peaceful ride was shattered by a horn blast. Luthen heard an ogre battle cry, and everyone spurred their mounts to catch up to the first group. As we approached our companions, I noticed they had picked up another traveler – a Solamnic knight who looked like he had seen better days. Three ogres were quickly closing in on the group, apparently trying to finish the job that their now dead gigantic wolf couldn’t. Luthen launched a pair of fireballs at the ogres. That only slowed them down. We finally managed to reach Artor and the new knight as I jumped from my cart. Artor finished off two ogres as my axe bit into the third. Wasn’t enough to drop it, but before I could swing again this little badger came out of nowhere and finished off the job I wasn’t dwarf enough to handle on my own. Almost makes a guy want to hang up his axe.

    At least I got a chance to redeem myself, as three more ogres appeared in the distance. Azure began chanting something and a mist began to surround the ogres. Somehow this mist trapped them in place. Guess Kalen thought he’d make short work of three immobilized ogres because he said something about returning “after they are slain” as he charged toward the trio and left the rest of us in the dust. Squal and Simone charged on horseback. Artor must have been having some kind of trouble with his horse, since he quickly dismounted and followed the other three into battle, with the new knight at his side. I wasn’t going to stand around playing with my axe, so I followed the two knights into battle.

    Would’ve been better off waiting with Stabelina and the kender. By the time I reached the group, two of the ogres were already down, so I charged the third. Guess all the running and being STRUCK BY LIGHTNING doesn’t do much for a fella’s combat reflexes. I swung at the ogre and my axe went flying out of my hands. Luckily Artor was there to finish the job.

    Three days ago, I missed a crocodile and fell into the cargo hold of Murn’s ship. Earlier today a badger dropped an ogre before me, and then I threw my axe away while swinging at another. Maybe I should have stayed with my family in Palanthas quietly forging weapons and being lorded over by the Nerekans.

    But anyway, we took care of the ogres without too much trouble, although Squal was having a rough time of it by the looks of him. Found out this new knight was out with the rest of a patrol when they were ambushed by the ogres and some kind of daemon. His horse ran off and he was the only survivor. His name was Alfric and he told us he was stationed in Elmwood. Luthen offered his horse to Alfric, so the now horseless mage joined me on my cart. Kaylee saddled up with Stabelina on her pony, which made me breathe a sigh of relief. Again we split into two groups. Luthen, Azure, Simone, and now Kalen joined me in the rear. The new knight rode up front with Artor. We rode the rest of the afternoon until it was time to make camp.

    Noticed Alfric had taken a pretty good hit to the side of his armor at some point, so I offered to patch it up for him. I’m not as skilled in armor smithing, but I know my way around metal well enough to know how to smooth out the rough edges and make it wearable again. This Alfric guy is kind of a jerk, or as Luthen taught me later that night, a “dingus.” That’s Elven for a dog’s hindquarters. I murmured something in Dwarven, which Luthen and Simone overheard. They both laughed, so I knew I wasn’t the only one who wasn’t too fond of the knight.

    While I was fixing Alfric’s armor, I showed him my medallion. Since it’s magically engraved with the Oath, I thought he might know something about it. He told me to seek out Commander Crownguard or their chief priestess Catherine uth Strong at the barracks in Elmwood. Did the best I could with his armor and he didn’t even thank me. Guess he thought the information he gave was thanks enough. He did mention buying a ring from me when we reached Elmwood, so maybe I shouldn’t be so hard on the guy. Although he is quite the dingus.


    OOC: And once again, Nathril drops his axe. Maybe I should mention at this point in the campaign, we weren't confirming our fumbles. Rolling a one was automatically considered a critical fumble and Tauren would somehow determine the results. Eventually we convinced Tauren to confirm critical fumbles like we confirm critical hits, i.e. roll a one, roll again and if you miss, THEN it's a critical fumble. I like that method much better.

    Anyway, the badger Nathril mentioned was actually summoned by Stabelina. She was a reluctant mystic and these badgers always seemed to appear when she was threatened. pirategirl can elaborate, I'm sure. But Nathril was severely embarassed when his axe inflicted a hefty amount of damage on the ogre, but the monster merely stood there. In the next round, the little badger bit the ogre for maybe three points of damage and the monster died. I can see Nathril, throwing his hands in the air in frustration and rolling his eyes..."By Reorx! The gods laugh at me!" And then he tossed his axe away after running as fast as he could just to get into another battle. So much for a fighter who can't actually fight.

    Luthen's player (who shockingly goes by "Luthen" on these boards, if he ever posts) just made up "dingus" on the spot and for some reason it just worked. His character has a horrible sense of humor, so to witness actual humor coming from his mouth was a bit startling.

  9. #29
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    Default Elmwood

    Dry-Heat 16:

    We arrived in Elmwood around mid-morning. Artor and Alfric got both of our groups through the gate with no problems and we proceeded to the Elmwood Rose, the inn where we planned to spend the next few nights in town. At the Rose, I rented nine rooms for the group. Not sure why I included the kender, considering she was nowhere to be seen. Guess all this travel has softened me up a bit. This Elmwood Rose was the most stunning inn I’ve seen in my short travels. The woodwork is amazing and the stonecrafting of the floors is almost dwarven quality. Good thing we “acquired” that money in Bloodwater – this place wasn’t cheap.

    We all took some time to relax and sample the bathing rooms before meeting in the common room for a midday meal. After some light discussion and fantastic food, I wandered into town with Luthen and Kalen. Luthen was interested in checking out the local magic shop and I was just curious to take a look around. It’s always interesting to sample other merchants’ goods, maybe even learn something from another smith’s designs. I also wanted to stop by the barracks at some point to talk with the priestess, but that can wait for a day or so. It was nice just to be in a safe, civilized town for a change after two days of traveling over the open plains.

    The magic shop seemed well-stocked. The place was run by an elf, which should have been convenient for Luthen. He lowered his hood to reveal his pointed ears, but the reaction from the shopkeeper wasn’t all that inviting. Not like if I ran into a fellow dwarf in town – these elves are kind of strange. Come to think of it, even the Solamnic knights have been acting a little odd around Luthen. Must be his red robes or something. Ah well, I like the guy, no matter what reaction he gets from strangers.

    The elven shopkeeper (didn’t catch his name) had a nice selection of exceptional daggers. I picked up two at a discount. Had to borrow a little coin from the “Bloodwater Fund,” but I’ll repay the group with interest. Hope to resell them outside of town and turn a profit. Saves me some time at the forge, considering all this travel hasn’t allowed much time for swinging the hammer. After Luthen finished his business with the other elf, the three of us made our way back to the Rose.

    Back at the inn, we met up with the rest of the group. Simone was the only one missing, as has been the case at every inn we’ve stopped at. She stays in her room quietly praying so the rest of the group isn’t tainted by her ring. Kind of feel bad for her, but she seems to be taking it alright. Artor informed us that we’d be leaving for the Darkwoods in the morning. That’s where we’ll find the monastery of Majere and hopefully get this ring removed from Simone’s finger. The problems it’s caused so far have just been nuisances, but I’d hate to see things get any worse. Plus that death knight may be connected to the ring, so the sooner it’s gone, the better.

    I asked Azure if we had managed to get our hands on Kaylee’s dagger, but no one had seen it since she left. The barkeep overheard us mention Kaylee’s name and told us that she’ll be playing a show at the inn later that night. Not sure what the significance of this dagger is, but Azure seems to think it’s pretty important. Tonight would be a good chance to relieve the kender of her weapon. I did just that when she showed up that evening. Kaylee asked us to watch her dagger while she was performing on stage. I took that opportunity to slip away and lock it in my cart at the stables. She of course wondered what happened to it, but Luthen told her another kender came in and took it to keep it safe. Not sure I like lying to the girl, but Stabelina gave her a dagger to replace the missing one. Hope we did the right thing.

    During Kaylee’s performance (which was quite good, surprisingly), a group of elven priests of Habbakuk strolled in and chose a table in another corner of the common room. Azure couldn’t resist talking to the group or maybe it was just the ale talking, I’m not sure. Don’t know what they were discussing, but I don’t think Squal was very happy seeing his sister flirting with a group of elves. Squal and Stabelina disappeared to the upper floor at some point in the evening after talking with Artor, but I never found out what they were up to.

    The thought of Luthen sending a round of dwarven ale to the elven priests made me chuckle as I drifted off to sleep.

    OOC: Nathril decided it would be easier if he could negotiate a decent price for a quality weapon, and then resell it elsewhere for a small profit instead of trying to craft everything himself. I rolled a pretty decent Profession (Merchant) check so Nathril was able to buy two masterwork daggers from the shopkeeper at a deep discount. Plus, Nathril's ranks in Craft (Weaponsmithing) weren't really high enough to justify the risk to create a masterwork weapon on his own.

    I think this was the night that Artor acquired the Brightblade from the elven priests, but Tauren will have to fill in the details. Nathril didn't know what Artor, Squal, and Stabelina were doing while he was sitting in the common room, so he had no idea the Brightblade was even in the picture. Of course, my powers of recollection may not be functioning right now, so Tauren may have to set the record straight on this whole Brightblade issue.

  10. #30
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    Originally posted by Nathril:
    I think this was the night that Artor acquired the Brightblade from the elven priests, but Tauren will have to fill in the details. Nathril didn't know what Artor, Squal, and Stabelina were doing while he was sitting in the common room, so he had no idea the Brightblade was even in the picture. Of course, my powers of recollection may not be functioning right now, so Tauren may have to set the record straight on this whole Brightblade issue.
    You're right. One of the elven priests was working with the Legion of Steel to combat the increased activity of the hobgoblin and ogre bandits in the area in recent months. More specifically, the Legion had secretly removed the Brightblade from the Tomb of the Last Heroes in Solace to use the weapon to fight the daemon warriors that appeared to be working with the raiders. The Qualinesti priest (Harmanutis Habin was his name) mistook Artor and his motley crew as the group sent by the Legion to fight the daemons. Squal and Stabelina met with the weapon's keeper upstairs. Although neither one of them was exactly sure what was happening they played things careful and close to the vest and managed to acquire the sword from the Legionaire (good ol' Dav Shadowrunner). However, neither of them knew what the weapon was beyond old and magical. Artor, however, immediately recognized the weapon's family crest and elected to hold onto the weapon until he had a better idea of what was happening.

    Artor's association with the Legion that started here would eventually have consequences for him later in his career as a knight.
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