The Realm of Joroin

An orc and and ghost walked into a bar...
Paws, after receiving information about the Orcs that killed his family, gathered his friends Lia, Lorrgrim, and Aria – along with a new ally, a dwaven fighter of some type; they started out to find the Orc tribe known as The Severed Eye and the magic sword, Scarblade, they posses. After just over a week of travel south of The Evergreens the group came across the northern road that is to take them into the heart of The Severed Eye Tribes lands; with little effort they were able to do just that and easily finding the gladiatorial pit that holds Scarblade as its prize.

Without much investigation or negotiation the group found itself ‘volunteering’ to fight in the pit to try and help Paws win his sword. Leading off with an easy fight got both the growing crowd and the group of adventurers excited, but the brutality of the second round has the heroes reeling a bit as the crowd is split in who it wants to win…

We start next week as the 3rd round gets ready to open.

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Wipe Out... or almost at least.

After a deadly fight with not only the corrupted Jaryn, but the demon that was possessing him, Lia looks around the desecrated temple with a small tear running down her cheek. Where Jack’s body should be was instead a bloody pile of a grey skinned humanoid figure – just like the minion’s of Tiamat they had killed back in town. Was Jack a traitor? Or was he in hiding? Without much debate she decided on the later, and packed up his remains to return to the Temple of Pelor – they should be able to bring him back to life after all he has done for them.

Looking around the scene again Talwhyn and Zebith were both gone… not only dead, but their bodies were gone also. Talwhyn left a golden outline of mystical energy that was slowly fading away, while Zebith left behind a shadowy smudge on the floor where he had fallen… and of course there was no sign of Kerrin the Traitor – who at the first opportunity sided with the Demon and whisked away to who knows where.

Only Julian and her still stood after this horrific battle, and they worked together to get back to Dauos safely… but then went their separate ways. Julian to spend his hard earned gold and Lia to the Temple to report her findings.

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Assassins, Changlings and Cultists... Oh my!

After the near death encounter with the assassin, Dajani, the weary adventurers catch their breath as they travel for another two days north through the woods. As the second day comes to an end the party notices a change in the landscape. The once green trees change to stunted gray bushes, clinging tenaciously to the rocky hills beyond. The sun is setting, and off in the distance they see it – a twisted rise of dark stone, its lower third carved into perfectly aligned upright slabs. As the peak disappears into the descending duck, the pillars appear to hold the dark sky itself. The temple lies before you less than a day away.

For the better part of the next day you hike towards you goal, finally slipping though a screen of scrub trees and up a low rise. Winding its way through the decaying forest for a mile or two is the Black March… a wide path paved with soot stained black stones… and where it meets the base of the rocky terrain ahead a settlement is spread out. Straight-edged roads of cracked flagstone run between huge buildings of timber and stone.

When the group gets closer, after slipping on the robes taken from some fallen cultists, they notice that many of the structures have collapsed, but the inhabited core of the temple grounds has the appearance of any northern village of old. No slaves or prisoners can be seen here, and all though groups of cultists train with sword and shield, no guards or apparent overseers can be seen.

Black march

At the base of the temple an oversized avenue leads to a wide flight of immense stone steps. These rise to a portal open in the stone’s face. Firelight flare from within a wide hall running into the mountain’s heart. Great sections of the rocky landscape are given over to gardens and orchards. Mule teams haul logs and deadfall from the nearby woods. Sheep, cattle, and pigs are herded into rough stone corrals as dusk continues to fall. At different sites, construction is evident, new living spaces being reclaimed from the ruins. Fires begin to spring up. The smells of roast meat and wood smoke drift toward you on the breeze.

The group estimates at least five hundred cultists in this central camp, but also notices campfires in the distance containing smaller camps with more followers of Bane. They find they can move freely around the camp and easily make their way to the base of the steps at the end of the March when a large commotion behind them catches their attention.

“HEATHENS” bellows out a man, in the garb of Jaryn – but no doubt one of the changlings that got away from them a few days earlier, “Stop them NOW! Kill them ALL!” and with that the cultists near and far turn and run towards the adventurers. Leaving the group only one real option… so they sprinted to the top and managed to shut and bar the main door before the cultist took them down.

We pick up our next session with the group looking for an exit from the temple, other than the front door.

~~ I am sorry that I was not able to convey all this information in the session that it happened, with our long break my skills had fallen off and I sorta jumped the gun getting you to the temple steps. I hope the above fills in the blanks for you all.

Dan

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Goings on elsewhere...

LorgrimmLorgrimm sits atop the huge box shaped wagon looking out over the plains, the sun just starting to set on another day of travel, his 23rd best he can recall. With the city of Plagea fallen into the hands of Vecna and his followers the trip to Sulomur is even longer than it used to be, having to swing much further south to avoid infringing on his territory.

The stout dwarf is technically a guard in the employee of the caravan masters, but with the addition of a few thousand Plagean refugees he has become more of a herdsman, just trying to keep them together and moving in the same direction.

His nights are filled with vivid dreams where he relives his once gods death, and his one time clansmen refuse his offer of aid. Why was it the southern dwarves were so against him and his northern brethren… this is what he must find out – with all the changes in the realm infighting amongst the dwarves would help no one.

AriaDrusett; she had never been here and knows not a soul who lives here, but Aria has made her way here none the less, Drusett is the closest city to the fabled ruins of Saddle-Brook and that wasteland is the home to Tiamat… and although she is not sure how yet, Aria knows that she must see that god dead one way or another.

It did not take long for her to fall into her old habits, a dark alley, the roof of a brothel, the sewers under the city… all of them have seen her slay someone… someone who is taking advantage of others that is. Yes, this city much like Dauos, has it problems and why not try to help that out a bit while she hunts for a way to bring down the five headed god.

The magical key she holds has recently started to throb around her neck when ever she gets near the northern gate of the city… pulling her north maybe… towards the Tiamat. So far Aria has been able to control the feeling and the want that the key is seemingly forcing into her mind… but for how long? How long before the key calls out to its master and revels Aria and possibly her plan to the dark god? The key, as powerful as it is might have to be destroyed… if it can be.

PawsThe pickings close to the walls are getting slim as more and more citizens are pushing there way into the wilds. Black Paws, in order to keep up his hunt for the fowl creatures, has to move further and further out… in fact he has not returned to Dauos for nearly three weeks this time, the longest he has been away yet.

He and Ghostdancer have however made a bigger name for themselves, just last week they were able to take out an entire encampment of twenty orc warriors and burn the crates of weapons they were transporting to ash. The fact that one hobgoblin was in the camp, with his own tent, and more gold pieces in hand than should be normal has however been stuck in his mind since then.

Orcs and Goblins have worked together before, and certainly do now, but seldom does one pay the other for goods and services… they more tend to take what they want when they want it.

Maybe a trip back to town is overdue… maybe.

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Pig farmers are fun... I swear

With a longer than expected layoff the recap for last session is a bit blurry, please fill in any gaps I might leave out.

After a bit of investigation the band of heroes makes there way out into the farm belt to find a pig farmer named ‘Roger’ who has been robbed more than a few times recently, and see if he can help them with information about a band of hobgoblins and bugbears that had not only raided his farm but possibly a few caravans just outside the city.

Welcomed with not so open arms the group finally convinces the farmer to let them stay the night to protect him whilst they gather information from him and the land around his home. Like clockwork the band of thieves attacked, and had the group on the ropes… but our heroes are heroes for a reason and in the end they were victorious once again.

Now armed with a trail to follow, some oddly crested robes, and a decent nights sleep (after the battle of course) the group made there way into the southern forest, locally called ‘The Evergreens’. Along the way they were rejoined by a short time ally of Lia’s, a ranger type who is good with a bow and had fought with her earlier in her career.

After a long day of hiking, the group runs across a ruined building of some kind. Only its basement, a handful of crumbling pillars, and a fire pit are left of it. The tracks they are following look to go right through the ruin, and it appears they, or someone, has stayed the night here recently.

The group decides to stay the night, but with watchful eyes. Encountering no trouble through the night the group breaks camp for the morning… and that is where we will pick up.

Evergreen forest

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Sanctuary
(Interlude with Jack-a-Lynn)

The rain tried its best to convince the lines of ink and color to join its journey down the pages of Jack’s book. The treatments he had given it made the words and images proof against the sky’s brazen assault. The Eladrin’s breath clumped in thick foggy patches in front of his face, as if seeking to provide cover for his bright azure eyes which feverishly flew from person to person in the thick crowds which passed by the door of the church Jack huddled in. The dampness of his robes and the chill in the air should have cooled him to the marrow, yet he endured the cold discomfort of the air with indifference. No, the shaking of his hands as he turned the pages was not because of the weather…

As he sat on the ground, knees pulled to his chest, he clutched his tome to his bossom and finally closed his eyes out of sheer exhaustion. Muddled images came to his sleep-deprived mind. The fire. The mask. Aaron.

Jack startled awake at the sound of bootsteps in the puddles, refelxively whipping his orb out in front of him, its incandescence matching the inner glow behind his eyes. The light from the implement faded in synchronicity with the bale behind his eyes, and an almost pleading quiver of his lip was preamble to his stuttering plea…“He..help me, please…!”. Jack held a trembling hand out asking for acceptance as Lia stood in front of the disheveled eladrin sitting damp and shaking in the doorway of her church.

(You’re up Jess!)

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Down with the Dragon

A successful day or two out in the swamp brings our heroes back to the Outpost, along with Emesha, her followers, and the corpse of Greo. Emesha, still worried about Jaryn and his lack of communication, asks Lia to report back to the church with what she has found. The group helps the pilgrams rebuild their walls and decks from the fighting, and aides in startings of a baracade to help protect should the lizard men come back.

After three days work and play (yes, some of the pilgrams wished to show their thanks…) the group made its way back to Daous, allowing Lia to report back what she had found while the others went off to spend their hard earned coin while telling tales of slaying the albino lizardman shaman and looting the horde of the black wyrm Sarkis.

A total of three weeks goes by before we start our next session – On the 1st of Growth’s Day.

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Were off to see the priestess, the wonderful priestess of Pelor…

After a brief reunion of Lia, and her eladrian acquaintances… and their ‘hired’ muscle our new group of heroes (I use the term loosely) header north out of the farm belt and into the wilds of Joroin. Following a newly reopened path directly to the river the group proceeded cautiously, but directly.

The group ran into a refugee, quickly paddling down stream, from a group of pilgrims who were heading to the same outpost they were, Lajo. Lajo warned the party of the lizardman attacks his group had suffered, and asked that if they could catch up to the remaining pilgrims and aid them in the last leg of the journey he would be most thankful… and they did just that.

After scaring off a few lizardmen scouts the stealthy group was able to find and aid the group of pilgrims, led by an excited young half-elf named Greo to the outpost. This spec of light in the wilds sits on the edge of a mire where the river has bled into the edge of the forest for as long as most can remember.

The group quickly announced themselves to Emesha, the priestess of Pelor that started this outpost, The Witchlight Outpost, and then aided her in setting up some defenses around it – as she also had reports of lizardmen attacks recently.

And to no ones surprise the lizard men attacked… at dawn, using the low rising morning fog as cover a handful snuck in and around the buildings as one absolutely huge lizard-beast charged into the buildings themselves and attacked everything in sight (its own men included thanks to a bit of magic from the group).

Despite the tree trunk wielding monstrousity, in the end the outpost was defended. In the chaos Emesha and Greo were hauled off by the attackers, heading for Treewater… a village that decades ago sunk beneath the swamp and is rumored to be the home not only this tribe of lizardmen, but of a black dragon that has sworn allegiance to Bane

Witchlight outpost lights

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The 3rd of Spring's Night
where we shall pick up from...

Some ninety odd days have passed since our heroes witnessed the fall of Simon, and it is now the 3rd day of Spring’s Night and as the days continue to warm the ground thaws, the rivers run flooded with melt water, and all danger of frost has passed. Rains are common, helping trees and flowers blossom throughout the area. The farming belt of Dauos is busy with planting, tiling, and prepping for the season.

The day Simon fell is still etched in everyone’s mind, but the constant talking and debate over it has fallen to a trickle. The bit of chaos that ensued after his fall has ended (for the most part) and the citizens are back into their daily routines – be it farming, training, studying, politicking, or what ever else might need to be done.

The most notable change is the prevalence of religion. New temples to almost every deity are under construction and priests of each of the faiths have found new vigor and are on seemingly every street corner debating with and converting the locals to their particular god.

Our group of heroes has gone their own ways at this point;
Paws returning to the farm belt and his excursions to the other side of the wall…
Lia has been spending her time at the light of Pelor, finding time to aid Paws when she can…
Lorgrimm finally got to meet with the remnants of the Anvils of Light, but decided to head north to his home instead of being treated like an outcast…
Aria, like Paws, as returned to her hunt – only her hunt involved heading north so she hitched a ride with same caravan as Lorgrimm…
The others, Thayne, Zebith, and the unknown rogue, seem to have faded away – we will have to see if and how they return.

When next we meet Lia will have recently convinced Paws to join her for a meal at the Pitch Fork… a now all to familiar Inn/Tavern for our heroes.

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The 2nd of Birth's Day
The day Simon fell...

Information gathered by various party members during the few days after Simon was slain.

Dauos

The city of Dauos saw the actual slaying of Simon the Eternal (well not so eternal now as he?) when the incarnations of Bahamut, Moradin, Erathis, and Avandra attacked Simon and one of his few allies Asmodeus. The battle was not as long as one might expect with the blows coming in hard and heavy. Dragon’s breath cleared the city square, leaving only burnt debris. The four deities surrounded Simon and took their turns battering his defense, that is until Asmodeous snuck into the battle and dropped the unsuspecting Moradin with a well placed blow. Erathis, staggered by the loss of her companion, showed Simon the opening he needed as he pummeled her with elemental energy until she crumbled under the attacks. Bahamut, the Mithral Dragon, and Avandra (in the form of a Content Not Found: aasterinian) dug deep and pushed the attack, and in what was fairly anti climatic they used their brute force to beat the darkness to death.

Dresett

No fighting took place in Dresett, but the rule of Simon ended with his death. It seems none of his ‘loyal’ servants were that loyal after all.

Plagea

In the city of Plagea, Vecna seeming turned on Simon and instead of standing at his side he claimed the city for himself as soon as he heard of the death of the once tyrant. Most of the citizens fled the city, and it is yet unknown as to where they are going to go or how they are going to get there.

Sukmur

Four gods walked the streets of Sukmur but none lifted a hand to aid or hinder. Corellon, Ioun, Kord, and the Raven Queen walked and talked and when they seemingly came to a conclusion the vanished… leaving the city with only the knowledge that Simon was dead and he ruled them no more.

Strios

The city of Strios saw the only other god v god fighting as Gruumsh stood do defend Simon’s rule while Sehanine, Pelor, and Melora came to end it. Gruumsh was able to slay Sehanine but while he basked in the kill Corellon and Melora were able to grab the upper hand, tearing him limb from limb with their bear hands.

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