Ye Gilde

Shory Story 6: Mini Me
Chaos!

The exploration continues…

XP: 2,000

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Shory Story 5: The Aeromantic Infantibulum
The Heart of it All

The chaotic energy from the broken stone gave Djelzeem a minor curse but a small boon to ???

Banderak’s items were pawed over and there was a hurried discussion about where to go next. The shoggoth was drawing near. They decided to fly and/or climb into the globe tower where Yakmar seemed to originate. The first ones entered the main chamber. From inside the living area, the walls appeared transparent and seemed to offer a view of the surrounding city. It is clearly an illusion, however, as there was no green haze and the buildings all appeared intact. Instead of jungle, only sky surrounds the city. People flew past the tower, some using magical flight while others rode on flying carpets or the backs of griffons and giant eagles. A floating square metal platform engraved with complex geometric designs was being loaded with many fine-looking goods, some of which were obviously magical.

A sneaky fiendish baboon took a swipe at Jerro when he neared the central staircase. It missed and those in the room ganged up on the primate. Skritek pulled Djelzeem the rest of the way up and the two of them joined the monkey bashing. They bloodied it good and it ran upstairs.

Outside they heard the shoggoth and they all quickly went downstairs into what was left of the the dinning room and kitchen. Seeing nothing interesting they continued down. The storeroom was next. There was no exit. M’aiq pressed his hands to the wall and used his power to see through it. Below in the crater, the mass of undulating tarry black flesh caressed the menhir. Its unworldly voice could faintly be heard plaintively crying out, “Tekeli-li!”

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Shory Story 4: The Shoggoth Stone
The Battle at the Crater

M’aiq moved further into the Temple of Azathoth. Djelzeem, confused, shot a sling stone at Jerro but missed. Uth telekineticly attacked Skritek with rubble, Jerro crept around, and Skirtek slashed Uth back for less damage than she did to him.

The immense mound of black slime oozed forward, eyes and mouths and even stranger things forming in its heaving bulk. It rolled into the crater and engulfed the bodies of the wights. They were no more and then it headed to the side of the staircase and flowed halfway up.

Orko conjured and ankylosaurus atop the stairs to fight the Horror. Meanwhile his companions were still fighting each other. All but M’aiq that was. The catfolk had realized that there was no exit and moved to the opposite side of the open entrance. The others continued to have their brains scrambled.

Tentacles swatted the anklyosaurus and the dinosaur fought back. Orko stayed out of reach. Djelzeem grabbed his head and collapsed unconscious. Then Uth did the same.

The dinosaur had been grabbed and pulled into the heaving black body. It disappeared. As horrible as the sound and smell were, though, the sight of the creature was terrifying beyond imagination. A horrible mass of slithering darkness, it moved forward with a speed that seemed impossible, as if its very drive to consume somehow propelled it without the need for physical locomotion. The giant blob was now at the top of the stairs and it sang once more. Again Skritek’s mind was overcome. Then he collapsed unconscious. M’aiq escaped around the wall and ran through the city for his life. Orko and Jerro moved to the center of the bodies and Orko Plane Shifted them all to the Shadow Plane.

M’aiq escaped back to the pylon where he hid only to be discovered by a pair of tny dinosaurs. The little dinos began nipping at him and drawing blood. He managed to skewer them on his rapier and ran for the jungle.

On the Shadow Plane the others had their own problems as two nightmare ettercaps investigated Orko’s tiny hut. By then Skritek had been healed slightly with the Panacea and the three of them managed to kill the ettercaps.

After two days Orko Plane shifted back but ended up in a spot far removed from where he intended. They were in the Mwangi next to a river and there was a strange, ancient elven waymarking stone that Uth tried to pull out. The next day he tried teleport and returned them to one of their campsites on top of the tepui.

Before long they were reunited with M’aiq. and back at the city for a second attempt. Behind them, outside, they heard the blob creature singing at a small lake so they hurried inside the city. and returned to the crater.

Orko examined the menhir closely. He learned several things. Destroying it would be extremely difficult, as spells like shatter and even disintegrate would have no effect, but the stone is vulnerable to magic with the law descriptor. Also he felt that Attacks by those protected with protection from chaos spells or wielding weapons with the axiomatic quality also bypass the stone’s hardness. They believed that the stone was key to the creature’s existance here and begain attacking it. Uth threw huge chunks of masonry at it damaging it with her mental force, and Orko summoned a lesser angel to attack it. This did not go on for long before something came to investigate.

A flying dread wight descended from the globe tower and shrieked at Uth before casting a Lightning Bolt. Luckily she was protected from electricity damage and unharmed. The group spread out before the undead pointed his staff down at the ground and unleashed a fireball. It only caught 3 and did minimal damage. Orko then protected them from fire damage. Fezghul, an efreet bound to Yakmar, appeared behind the hound archon attacking the menhir and stabbed the dog angel. Those two began to fight. Then the wight used air magic to pick Uth up and drop her but Orko again was there to save her with Feather Fall. Fezghul killed the hound archon.

The wight disappeared and Uth returned to attacking the stone. This went on until it returned with reinforcements.

Behind the dread wight flew five of the pony-sized spider eater wasps. Riding one of the creatures was a Shory or what had once been a Shory. Somehow the group identified him as a mummy. The battle recommenced and this time the adventurers were outnumbered and quite possibly overpowered.

Orko helped even the odds by capturing two spider eaters with Black Tentacles. Djelzeem used a magic lamp from the buried city of Pazar to bring forth a djinni. The djinni owed him one. It blocked another two of the wasp things. Banderak charged Djelzeem and Uth trying to bull rush them off the crater lip. Djelzeem did not budge. Several others concentrated their attacks on the mummy’s mount. It was killed but the mummy remained in the air with magical flight. He announced himself as Banderak, chief of the Aeromancers.

The continued on more equal terms once the djinni transformed into a whirlwind and scooped up two of the spider eaters. The efreet with its sword and the undead with their spells. M’aiq channeled some healing into his allies but then, it was suggested to M’aiq that he not heal his companions any more and he succumbed to the spell. The mummy’s aura of fear paralyzed several of them.

Banderak proved to be incredibly tough. He also healed as damage was done to him. He clubbed Djelzeem with a fist and infected the eunuch with mummy rot. Then the efreet was slain but Djelzeem released the near dead djinn from his duty. The djinni thanked him and popped out. There were only two spider eaters left and each flew to a paralyzed victim, M’aiq and Uth, to lay an egg in their bodies. The survivors made an effort to take both of those out next.

Yakmar released another fireball from his staff and burnt of number of people. Later he channeled negative energy and did some minor damage before he was cut down. Banderak continued fighting the good fight. Everyone left was able to concentrate on the aeromancer who was being forced back and heinously injured. Since there opponents had been flying most of the allies were low on distance weapons. Skirtek had thrown everything he had. Jerro was busy looting Yakmar’s body and bringing the staff to Orko. Uth returned to blasting the menhir.

In the end Banderak tried to flee. He couldn’t quite fly far enough fast enough though. Finally he dropped to the ground.

When the rune covered menhir cracked with a boom chaotic energy washed over them and in the distance the Shoggoth sang out. It was coming.

XP: 6,000

Loot:
Yakmar (dread wight)
Staff of bronzewood and brass (that shoots fireballs)
Leather traveling boots (in suspiciously excellent condition)
Silver chain with ruby studded nipple rings
Tian style dagger with blue metal blade
Silver holy symbol of Azathoth
gold ring with 3 dagger like marks
platinum ring with etchings of intertwined naked people

Banderak (mummy)
Fine blue vest with Shory motif
Leather belt with embossed pegasus
Mithril dagger
Mithril bracelets (pair)
Mithril earrings
Heavy gold necklace
Silver holy symbol of Azathoth
Ancient gold coin 1 inch in diameter and .25 thick
Iron key

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Shory Story 3: Oh the Horror!
Tekili-li

Out of the jungle, through the swamp, across the pampas, and into the city!

When the trail turned muddy and it was clear they would loose it soon, Orko conjured up mounts for them all. His magic steeds could walk on water and they sped off through the fens and into the open land between them and the crashed city visible in the distance. The tall ferns and rushes didn’t hid the numerous dinosaurs that were feeding and walking through the plain. They all looked like plant eaters though so the group sped along at top speed.

They caught the attention of the Tyrannosaurus from the jungle however. It began chasing them and when they realized it would be able to catch them, Orko created a Wall of Force between them. The T Rex crashed into the invisible barrier and fell back. The others angled for one of the strange pylons ringing the city. Along the way two giant ankhegs broke out of the earth but they were too slow. The magic mounts were a huge boon.

Uth fussed over the Shory pylon. She thought it had some sort of maintenance function and declared it a worker’s hut. The pylon was magic though and she tried to Use it. She received a zapping from a single crystal set in one of the walls. Undeterred, she tried again and a diamond opening appeared.

The interior was bigger than the exterior and dark except for a tray of multicolored glowing stones set atop a pedestal. Orko stated that they radiated strong abjuration magic. Someone noticed the T-rex coming their way so everyone stepped inside. Uth began manipulating the stones with her mind but sent the tray crashing to the floor. Orko mentioned that they were still magic but he didn’t sense abjuration any longer. Uth declared that now they could enter the city.

Outside though the T-rex was slowly approaching. It was scared off with more magic and the party quickly made for the bizarre edifice from another age standing in crumbling majesty. It was surrounded by a gold-colored wall of some unidentifiable, semi-translucent material rises twenty feet above the rock. Behind it rise
buildings that seem to defy reality. Shimmering glass spires twist in on themselves next to massive towers that seem to be composed of fern leaves. One of the larger towers seems to be shaking, as if some unseen giant is gently rocking it back and forth. In the center of the city, a massive inverted horn, made from some kind of purple metal, towers over the other buildings. Other unusual buildings include a metallic cube, a glass flower 100 feet tall, and a needlelike tower with a puffball in the middle. A low discordant humming sound drifts out of the complex. On the southeastern side of the city, a ramp is pierced by a series of gates, which open on to other ramps leading down onto the plains. It appeared deserted and they hiked up the nearest ramp.

Beyond the gates, the streets and alleys of the city are only partially visible, shrouded by a pale green mist that seems to seep out of the walls and cling to the ground. Ahead and to the left was one of the more unusual towers appearing like a needle and globe. They made there way to it. The structure esembled a very thin reed or stalk with a puffball globe stuck halfway up the tower, fifty feet above the ground. The surface of the walls look like chitin, and numerous cracks ooze a sticky yellow sap. It sat on the long edge of a plaza. It was not a building with an entrance on the ground floor. They began exploring the plaza and noticed baboon poop of a fiendish nature. At the far end of the plaza there was a lot of strewn debris as if from an explosion and further still was a crater adjacent to a very large domed building.

They first explored a public structure that had a rippling wall but inside it was uninteresting an totally ruined. When they exited M’aiq stepped in a pile of baboon poop. They made their way to the crater. At some point in the past, this wide area was likely a large plaza. Now, a deep hemispherical hole carves out the center of the plaza, forming a gigantic crater roughly three hundred feet across. The walls of the crater are smooth and descend sharply near the edges before curving inward to the center at the bottom of the crater. A wide flight of steps is cut into one side of the crater, providing access to the bottom of the hole. At the exact bottom stands a glossy black stone menhir. The stone is about eight feet high and looks old and weathered. Its surface is
carved with runes, symbols, and signs, although the passage of time has eroded some of them. The stone does not cast a shadow of any kind and it seems to glow with a faint, green light, slightly brighter in the grooves of the chiseled runes. The light is the same shade as the ever present mist.

Soon four lizardmen were noticed inside the crater. They moved quickly and silently up the stairs. It was clear they were not alive and they were identified as dread wights. The party arranged themselves for battle. They knew the wights would have to climb around the wall of the building that overhung the crater. And so it was. As the wights climbed around the wall they were cut down in turn. The last cried out in Draconic for Lord Yakmar for help before dying and tumbling into the crater.

In the distance they heard the musical call of Tekeli-li!

Each climbed around the wall into the low domed building. It did not look like much on the outside, but the inside is decorated with gold leaf on every available surface and the ceiling is a marvel of magical control: a huge eight-pointed star at the top slowly rotates and releases colored beams of light. The floors and pillars all seem to be in fairly good shape, and the style and construction of the building seems
more recent than anything else you’ve seen in the city. The gray stone altar at the center of the temple is stained with fresh blood.

They were not alone however. Almost immediately three chokers descended from the ceiling and attacked. Although great at choking, they couldn not put up a suitable defense against the party. After the first was killed Orko left to investigate the approaching sound.

Tekeli-li!

He returned as the last two chokers died. Orko told them that it looked bad and they could hear it more clearly now. At first, it was just a sound. A squelchy, slithering, sucking sound that spoke of constant and insatiable consumption. Then came the smell. Almost imperceptible at first, the odor seemed new and yet familiar at the same time—a sweet, seductive scent that seemed attractive at first, before it grew to sickening, overpowering strength. Then it sang.

It was a sounds sane life was not meant to hear. Jerro the wyrwood was immune, and Orko and M’aiq were lucky. The other three lost their minds.

XP: 1200

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Shory Story 2: Jurassic Park
Oh Jerro!

The party follows the narrow trail along the stream. It isn’t long before they meet some of the wildlife. It began with a single orangutan. The orange creature was coming at them fast from the right and they readied their weapons and took a defensive stance. Almost immediately they noticed a troop of monkeys coming from the same direaction. They began panicking. Jerro started climbing a treetrunk, Skriteck leapt across the stream, Djelzeem and M’aiq hid, and Orko floated across the stream.

The orangutan swung across the stream and kept going, ignoring them. It seemed the mad monkeys were the real threat, Djelzeem and M’aiq both took a running jump over the stream but the catfolk didn’t make it and was swept downstream. Jerro was hiding unsuccessfully. The doll was the only one left on the right bank. When the monkeys reached the stream Orko met them with an Aqueous Orb and others loosed arrows. The animals were quickly exterminated and most of their furry bodies fell into the stream (downstream, M’aiq hanging onto a vine was smacked my multiple monkey corpses).

While everyone was congratulating themselves, Skritek pointed back across the stream. Many things were moving through the ferns towards them. Soon a pack of velociraptors was at the bank of the stream sniffing around. One of them noticed Jerro and walked over to sniff him while Skritek aimed his bow. The dinosaur breathed in and out making Jerro’s bonnet flutter. It blew some snot on him. Another raptor noticed Skritek and leaped across the water and gutted the hobgoblin with one of his toe claws. The fight was on.

Orko still had his Aqueous Orb and the other fought as best they could. Most of the raptors jumped the stream and attacked. It turns out that nobody was really concealed from them. As frightening as the situation was at the start the fight turned against the velociraptors quickly. Except for Skritek there were barely any injuries.

But like before the fun was not over. The velociraptors had been stalked by a Tyranosaurus Rex that now came through the jungle. Everyone froze. The huge beast sniffed the air and looked around. It jabbed it’s head downward and knocked Jerro over before it snagged a velociraptor body and gulped it down. It seemed to see the others across the stream but it moved to the next dying raptor. It stepped on Jerro pushing him down into the soft earth. It swallowed the next dinosaur and Orko decided that they would be next. He cast a spell and make the dinosaur’s own shadow attack it. The T-rex bellowed. It ran off upstream with Jerro’s bonnet stuck between its toes. Finally the encounter was over. They were safe for the time being.

They discovered that the jungle held many wonders for the five senses and they followed the narrow trail along the stream. It was beautiful, strange, and a little scary. That afternoon two lizard-like creatures were spotted in ambush next to the trail. When they were confronted they ran off.

They were seen again shortly though. In the next ambush they did not flee. These strange creatures seemed to be a strange offshoot of lizard folk. Clearly these were the Sleestacks mentioned to Uth by the old adventurer. There were only three of them armed with bows and spears but they were backed up by a triceratops. It was a stout fight. The leader of the sleestacks was an excellent fighter and of course the dinosaur was trampling and goring before Orko summoned two giant scorpions to hold it in place. Ultimately the ambush failed with all the attackers dead.

Soon after Orko summoned up a opaque sphere for them to all sleep inside. No doubt it would be a big day tomorrow.

XP: 3567

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Shory Story 1: Uth's Proposition
For the love of treasure


On the street in Ipeq, Uth caught the eye of a down-on-his-luck man on the street. He approached her about her Shory style clothes of all things. It turns out that he recognized the fashion. Years ago he was a member of an adventuring party and though she would be interested in a ruined city they had found. But of course he needed some gold.

M’shal took it and dribbled out some more info.

What he describes sounds strikingly similar to a Shory flying city. Of course it was on the ground and a bit tilted. There didn’t seem to me much of anything left in the few buildings they explored. Then they encountered the Horror. He avoids talking about it more. He starts rocking back and forth.

He tells you the valley is inhabited by evil sleestacks and terrible lizards but they all hide from the Flying Death. He giggles at that and says you will too if you go there. Flying Death is a mighty dragon that roosts in a mountain aerie and hunts over the valley.

But if she wanted the location, he needed more money. So Uth paid another 100 gold pieces.

He provided a rough map and other details to find the “tilted” city. It was on the edge of the Mwangi on a jungle covered plateau called a tepui. With that information in hand Uth knew what she had to do.

Uth hit the steets and recruited some down-on-their-luck adventurers she knew to find the supposed ruins of a crashed Shory city. The cast of characters included Skritek, Orko, Djelzeem, Jerro, and M’aiq. She was brief on details but promised a lot of valuables for the taking in the lost city. Plans were make to leave very soon and make use of Orko’s magical steeds to make the journey up river, over the pass, and to the Mwangi in a matter of days instead of weeks.

Surprisingly the trip to the tepui did in fact proceed rather smoothly. It wasn’t without danger (giant spider, sphinx, chimera, dragon, etc) but each was overcome or avoided with little difficulty.

XP: 1,233

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A New Guild Branch (Osirion Style) - Part 2
Tomb of Khuman-Ra

They stood at the excavated entrance to Khuman-Ra’s tomb. Between them, M’aiq, Apu, Jerro, Uth and Kass pieced together some basic knowledge of the ancient emperor. He was not remembered by history as a good man. Feared and ruthless, he ruled over two-thousand years ago and worshipped the demon lord Jubilex “The Faceless Lord” and ruler of oozes. Khuman-Ra was said to keep pits filled with various oozes to dip his prisoners in. They studied the cursed necromantic taint to the air and land once again. M’aiq felt the evil stronger here. A spell was identified, a powerful curse (Greater Cursed Terrain) which meant somewhere in that tomb was a spot where it emanated from in a five mile radius. This powerful curse would cause natural hazards to increase and sour the land with catastrophe. The party debated their plan of action while Hazeed watched from a distance. Apu was injured by the Dust Digger and petitioned to return to the village for a good night’s rest. The others ignored his complaints and formed a marching order to descend the steps leading into the ancient tomb. Not to be ignored, the merchant investigator refused and stated that he would wait here for a short time in case they changed their minds and then he would return with Hazeed to the village. As if to accent the state of affairs a dust storm rolled in on the tail of his statement, proof that the curse was in full effect. While Hazeed and Apu took cover from the flash storm. Kass led the party down a steep set of worn stairs.

The tomb was definitely ancient, crumbled stone and debris littered the ground at every step strewn across hundreds of bone fragments and skeletons. The walls and every other surface was covered in relief and sculptures of what could only be oozes and slimes in motion. The carvings created tons of shadows in their light sources, making everything difficult to examine. Many had died down here over the ages. The tomb was rumored to surface every now and again but few returned from its discovery to tell a tale beyond death and woe. An unnatural amount of insects and worms wriggled across the floors and the smell of decay permeated the stale air.
They found a large entry hall complete with numerous doors and a huge statue on a raised platform depicting the emperor. The bones in the room stirred and two skeletons rose to attack but were quickly dispatched. Kass and Jerro inspected the construction here to insure it was sound. Too many locations held crumbling walls or collapsed pieces. No one wanted to be buried alive down here. It seemed sound enough. They wanted to hurry and began systematically checking the doors around the chamber and a theme became all too evident. Traps both triggered and un-triggered dominated the scene. Large blades set to swing down and cut you in two, spring darts hidden in the walls and pits disguised in the floor peeked through at every turn. M’aiq discovered one of these blades first hand as it swung down to chop into his shoulder while examined a doorway. After a few inspections they chose a door to follow. It led them deeper into the tomb with more signs of recently excavated rubble and collapsed portions of the dungeon. Turn after turn and chamber after chamber revealed more debris and copious amounts of bones and dried corpses. There must have been a massacre down here. Traps still surprised them as they went with darts stabbing into Kass, but at least the poison was long ago dried and inert. They found more skeletons that crawled to a semblance of life to challenge them but dispatched them with minor injury. The party wound their way through tunnel after tunnel avoiding many doors for fear of releasing more terrors on themselves. Their caution carried them to a small worship chamber. The idol depicted a fountain bubbling high with eyes in its folds, a representation of the demon lord Jubilex. Kass examined the altar, just touching the statue called forth a guardian. The foul creature was vaguely humanoid in shape with claws and a crocodilian head but composed of flowing black slime. The ooze demon snapped its jaws over Kass’ neck and left a terrible wound trailed by stinging acid. The beast appeared in the center of their party and began slashing and burning everyone with its efforts focused on the old warrior that called it here. The battle was hard fought as it resisted damage and ignored the magical flames poured over it. The party triumphed but with heavy damage and so their caution increased. Jerro did uncover a single copper piece in the room after searching. The doll ninja tossed it aside.

They wound their way to another section of the tomb, unsure what they were actually searching for. The originating sight of the curse could be anywhere down here. They found burial chambers for both nobles and servants. The servant chamber held dozens of caskets that were eerily empty. The noble chamber held six standing caskets, two opened and empty in the shape of women, three sealed in the shape of men, and one partially open in the shape of a massive snake. They debated and left this room, Kass was careful to disable the pit trap in front of the doorway in case they chose to return. They picked a new path and found a passage that descended to a rubble filled corridor with only a tiny tunnel leading through it. Jerro volunteered to investigate alone despite his injuries. He squeezed through the tunnel with M’aiq’s message spell on him and reparted back that it widened then tightened again delving into magical darkness. The borrowed sunrod cut through some of the darkness casting the path ahead in shadows. Inside he spotted eight individual red eyes darting about, starring back at him. Sounds of digging and scratching echoed out as well. This report caused M’aiq to call Jerro back quickly and they slammed and let Kass wedge that doorway closed, marking it with the word danger in bones and a symbol of warning in the form of a skull and crossbones. That done, they returned to the noble casket chamber. Despite their reservations they entered and searched. Inside the open caskets of the women, Jerro and Uth discovered some gold, a few gemstones, and a decorative bronze spear. Kass went to search the partially open snake casket. He heard a rattling sound and saw something white darting about inside. He quickly grabbed the lid and slid it closed, trapping something unknown inside. The sounds of scratching and beating inside the casket grew loud. Kass called for help and the other gathered around to hold the casket shut while he wedged it closed. Everyone fled the room and then wedged the entrance door shut too. This door was also marked with the skull and crossbones.

Unsure where to go next, they backtracked to the entrance chamber with the large statue. they took another path and disabled a few more traps to find a corroded well in a stark room. The darkness concealed where the bottom might be. The fearless Jerro volunteered to be lowered inside on a rope to investigate but the others thought that a bad idea. Instead they cast light on a bone and dropped it into the well. It fell to rest at least a couple of hundred feet below. then came the sounds. Scurrying noises from deep inside the dark hole that was the well. The party scrambled to flee the chamber and once again wedge the door shut, resetting the traps behind them and then marking the passage with their standard skull and crossbones. While collecting their thoughts in the entrance chamber and discussing returning to the village to rest and recuperate, They decided to search this chamber. Among rubble and bones they found an odd discovery, a recently burnt out torch and a water skin like those used by the villagers of Saleemis. They also discovered that the statue of the emperor was the source of the curse. It radiated intense magic and evil. Kass moved close to investigate it while the others watched. He triggered a pit trap filled with spikes and plummeted twenty feet. His acrobatic skills helped him minimize injury. Upon helping him out of the pit Uth noticed a concealed door on the wall behind the statue. Not wanting to waste any time, they focused on searching the secret chamber and planning a way to topple and destroy the statue of the emperor. Inside the secret room they found age old dust suggesting rich décor but among the ashes were a few things that survived including a potion, gold, and an eyepatch with skull and crossbones design on it (they took it as a sign it was meant for them). With loot stashed, they set about destroying the statue. Jerro, M’aiq and Kass chipped away while Uth bashed it with chunks of debris. They eventually toppled it and felt the necromantic magic dissipate instantly. A cold, rattled cry echoed across the room originating from somewhere deep within the tomb. Immediately following the crash of the staue came the sounds of more scrurrying. this time it came from the entrance leading to the surface. The party readied ranged weapons, used what little healing they had left and waited. A handful of giant camel spiders scrambled into the chamber, easily climbing and navigating the rubble. The battle was quick and dirty with the ninja and rogues makes good use of their flanking and sneak attack skills. The insects were slain and they fled the tomb, prepared to cave in the entrance and be done with this place.

Upon exiting they found a confusing sight. Hazeed the scout stood over the body of Apu, his scimitar dripping with the merchant’s blood. His face contorted in rage as they began trying to collapse the entrance to the tomb. “You cannot stop the great old one!” he shouted in a voice that was different from before.
Kass charged him with his dueling sword landing a solid blow, luckily it looked as if Apu did not go down without a fight. The scout had a wound already. Uth began hurling debris at the entrance to collapse it and insure nothing else came after them from within while Jerro and M’aiq maneuvered into a position to surround the crazed Hazeed. When the scout began to jerk and twitch violently they realized this might get bad. Hazeed shifted from man to monster in the blink of an eye. He had long clawed hands and a face with no features, only slits. He lashed out catching hold of Kass and sinking his claws deep into the man. Blood gushed out and drained into the claws as the creature drank his lifeforce. The monster that was Hazeed engaged Kass and M’aiq slashing with his scimitar and ripping with claws while Jerro pulled Apu to safety and tended his wounds. The combined efforts of the rogues brought the wounded monster down. They looted and tossed his body back inside the tomb before crumbling the entrance. With the tomb closed and curse ended they made their way back to Saleemis. The village elder greeted them with open arms and a reward of a goat which they donated to the family of the late Hazeed who was replaced by the faceless stalker. They offered a favorable tale of their efforts. Mission accomplished, they rested and returned to Ipeq to collect their reward.

Iseret was waiting, having just arrived herself. She gladly paid them each their 100gp reward and thanked them for their efforts requesting a full account of what had transpired. A.P.I.S. studied them as they gave their tale. The boy stuttered in details emotionlessly accounting for the less favorable points they chose to leave out. Iseret seemed quite pleased. She made a proposal that she offered to deliver to The Guild leaders in Absalom. She offered to initiate a branch of The Guild here in Ipeq, an Osirion base. (it was an idea she and her companions had discussed before) The Guild was pleased to hear such an offer and gladly accepted, offering The scarf dancer and her experienced companions leadership roles for the time being as the branch is established. Both A.P.I.S. and Uth were inducted as well as M’aiq, Lieutenant Kass and Captain Jerro. Apu has yet to decide.

Loot of note acquired: +1 ring of protection, potion of cure lt wounds, and pirate’s eyepatch

Apu gained 100xp
Kass, Jerro, M’aiq and Uth gained 1,438xp each
Osirion_-_Ipeq.jpg

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A New Guild Branch (Osirion Style) - Part 1
Meet the dust digger

A strange request for aid arrived at The Guild in Absalom. The strange part was that it gave little information aside from “trouble in a small village” and a reward of 100gp each upon completion. It got stranger since the request was sent from the distant city of Ipeq in the deserts of Osirion. An unnamed mage was the benefactor and it was promised that transportation was covered for the lucky guildies selected. Chad called together the first trio he could find and that he considered ‘expendable enough’ to send away on such a vague and time consuming mission. His superiors claimed that any chance to expand the connections and renown of The Guild would be valuable. And so Lieutenant Kass the aged rogue, Jerro the doll ninja-priest and the newly inducted and untested Apu the merchant-investigator would head to the docks and begin the mission. They had hoped for more aid but that was all that was available on such short notice.

The trio set out with their booked passage on the sea barge named The Crustacean. She was a large cargo barge that supplemented her income by accepting the occasional passenger. The trio was put to work by the captain who claimed it to be part of their booked passage. Kass swabbed the decks, Apu gutted fish, and Jerro used his divine magic to repair the ship. During the journey a curious traveler bound for Osirion, his motherland, overheard their discussions and offered his assistance. M’aiq the catfolk priest-rogue of the drinking God made a deal through Apu to join the mission. He asked few questions since his finances were dire, but promised them that “M’aiq knows much!” He also did not bother to inform them that their passage did not require working aboard the ship like servants. It was entertaining to watch them toil.

Weeks passed as they transferred from sea barge to river barge and sailed their way to the docks of Ipeq. Upon arrival the party was greeted by an intense woman in dancer’s garb, a mage of some local renown going by the name Iseret ‘Hero of the Flying Ship’. Evidently she and her companions had managed to remove an ancient curse, thwart a powerful effreeti, sail a flying ship and return flowing water to the deserts in this region. When questioned about why she would call on aid from The Guild in Absalom, she informed them that some of her companions once belonged to their guild and had recommended them since they were engaged in other endeavors. She also offered the aid of one of her assistants if they so desired. The pair were odd indeed, a young boy that stuttered and marked his body in glowing tattoos and a tall beautiful woman with green hair that dressed oddly and seemed exceedingly dramatic. After a quick debate they chose to take the woman, Uth, with them.

The mission was to venture to a nearby goat-herding village named Saleemis. They questioned the locals and found that all manner of rumors were spreading about a new curse in the land and even the rising of the dead.
When the party set out on their journey a single day’s walk from Ipeq, the heat proved too much for poor Apu. He complained the whole way and demanded a chance to rest due to fatigue and heat exhaustion despite the others’ desires to push on and reach their destination in one night. During their rest period they were attacked in the dark by what they thought were undead. Apu knew better. He identified them as Adhearers, a dumb race of savage humanoids that were quite difficult to kill. The party worked together to bring down two of the four assailants and drive away the other two injured but at a heavy price with both Uth and M’aiq temporarily losing their weapons stuck to the creatures bodies. The party’s injuries were severe and they crept the rest of the way to Saleemis and used all their healing abilities and skills to restore themselves.

In Saleemis they were greeted with high hopes and open arms. M’aiq immediately felt the shift in the air. He validated the claims of the villagers that a cursed wind blew over their lands now. He could feel the evil. Jerro used his magical talents to detect and then survey the tainted magic in the air and land. This place was definitely cursed with some sort of necromantic energies. The villagers spoke of missing members and lost goats or camels. They spoke of the environment growing more hostile and the natural creatures becoming more aggressive. They even mentioned rumors of their praised scout and guardian, Hazeed, telling stories of spotting dead rising from the sands. The party agreed to question this scout after a good night’s sleep and a hearty breakfast of gruel. Hazeed reluctantly decribed where he first spotted these dead crawling from the sands almost two weeks ago. After a short debate, Kass encouraged them to have the scout lead them to this sight. Apu suggested they bring shovel and pick and a sacrificial goat in case they needed them. Everyone agreed on the tools but M’aiq, Jerro and Kass felt that taking the villagers’ only livelihood was excessive. So they set out for a two hour hike some 3 miles distance with Hazeed leading the way and pick and shovel in tow.

When they neared the location where he claimed to have spotted the dead, everyone found a surprise. A ruin was uncovered in the sands, it’s entrance open to the sunlight. Hazeed assured them this was not there originally. He seemed spooked. The scout waited at a distance while the party advanced to investigate. M’aiq let them know he could feel the evil growing stronger here and Jerro could sense the magic increasing. As they approached the entrance the sands beneath their feet gave way. Tentacles sprouted from the earth and a large maw filled with rows of sharp teeth spread wide. Five tentacles lashed out at them all striking everyone save for Uth who tumbled away to safety. M’aiq’s catlike reflexes let him spring away with a few scratches and Kass fell back with scratches as well, but Apu and Jerro were not so lucky. The tentacles wrapped about both merchant and doll, snatching Jerro from his perch on M’aiq’s shoulder. The tangled pair were dragged screaming into the dustdigger’s mouth. As M’aiq and Kass flanked the beast dealing as much damage as they could muster, Uth shot ineffective blasts of telekinetic force. Jerro and Apu were swallowed whole. Hazeed looked on in horror from a distance thinking the village’s saviors were no more. In the belly of the beast the pair refused to give up. Jerro coated his blade in poison prepared to hack his way free while Apu emptied his mutagen into the creatures guts. That was enough to nauseate it and the dustdigger puked the pair up before darting deep beneath the sands and vanishing from sight. Only heavy doses of its blood and puke coated the sand.

The party collected themselves, bandaged wounds, and Apu suggested they head back to the village to rest. The others cast him an annoyed glance and inspected the ruin entrance. They decided that there were multiple tracks coming and going from this sight and most disturbingly that it had been recently excavated. There were runes, picture writing, scrawled about the entrance in an ancient tongue. Luckily every member present save for Uth was familiar with linguistics. They quickly pieced together its meaning:

“Here rests the tomb of Khuman-RA. He who trespasses shall be cursed for all eternity. He who enters shall endure a worse fate and he who dares disturb the body of the pharaoh shall suffer death at Khuman-Ra’s own hands.”

Kass also noted that the entrance was unstable and could be easily collapsed. They ended here, debating what to do next …

Kass, Jerro, Apu, M’aiq and Uth each earned 1,020xp
Osirion_-_Ipeq.jpg

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Trail of the Hunted VI

The trail of nature allowed the PC’s to leave without consequence. The idea of getting away from these judgmental centaurs put the team in high gear. About two hours into their journey Ulo (male elf), the Chernasardo Ranger appeared jotting alongside with another person came up to greet the adventures. The Phaendarian refugees were glad for the break in hauling the cart. They were already disgruntle about the pulling this damn cart! Ulo introduced Trobjorn, a dwarf who was looking to help the cause but was a little lost in the Fangwood Forrest. Introductions were made in some manner.

Ulo mentioned that Valoras and Courage got word you guys were safe. Valoras is still sway the elder druid council in favor of taking part in this war.

It was obvious that the caravan’s wooden wheels were going to need daily repairs due to the rough nature of the pounding holes in the ground. Bali used his shape wood ability to restore the wheel into good condition. The blacksmith helped with the bearing portion. He was just limited without tools.

The crew pushed the the forest with noises that were foreign to its nature. Within another three hours travel Thom’s paranoia mindset kept him sharp and on the edge to spot three hobgoblins in wait. The hobgoblins had arrows knocked into their longbows. Thom shouted “hobgoblins….ambush!”

Thom started to approach the ambushers, he almost noticed the swarms nest in doing so. He was mindful of the last encounter and advanced in a semi-circle. Thom noticed once he got close enough to the hobgoblins they had a residue applied on their persons. Milton took charge of protecting the refugees while sitting on the caravan’s seat! While the majority of were closing in on the hobgoblin scouts, one of them threw a pouch with rocks. A massive flying ant swarm exploded from the forest floor.

Trobjorn mistook the swarm for a group of angry gnats. He quickly reassessed this conclusion once the flying ant swarm attack him. David cast faerie fire on two of the hobgoblins. The hobgoblins were shooting arrows and steeping back. Thom got close enough to one and damaged him. Bali flew to try and cast a spell. He triggered one of the snag net traps in the process. Bali was on the forest floor crawling under the weight of the net in pain saying “oh my wittle wings!” Ostane was fiddling around with the unknown bombs then decided to use the acid bomb on the swarm but missed.

A few of the hobgoblins arrows hit true, when the female hobgoblin hit there was an extra stinging effect. Thom finally killed one of the ambushers. Ostane and Trobjorn were handling the swarm! Trobjorn’s healing seemed to be the tide turner! The female hobgoblin ordered a retreat, but wanted to grab the net with Bali in it and drag him with them. Lucky Thom cut the net first.

As the second hobgoblin fell, the female was backing up and shooting David. He had tripped her and was annoyed. She was making a dash for the caravan! The group stopped her but not before she withdrew a bomb and smashed it upon the ground. A huge fire explosion engulfed the surrounding area which fortuitously hit the swarm as well.

The group running in and out of the swarm finally killed it. Too many of its ants had been consumed in eating the PC’s. After all treats were eliminated people began looting the spoils.
Wounded and still banged up they marched on and made their way to an encampment. Watches were as normal and when they awoke one of the refugees had been taken in the night, only small pointed footprints and blood remained!

(Ostane, Bali, Thom, Milton, David, Trobjorn)

EXP Rewards: 833 – Fast Track

Rewards:
Composite longbow with magical bonus +1 and strength bonus of +2, 3x potions of Bull’s Strength CL3, Black adder venom (3 uses left), Vermin repellant

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Trail of the Hunted V

The group decided to start looting the caravan. Thom looked over the cart and found the double doored entrance locked. He got out his new toys and started to use them. He was able to undo the lock but then a sudden spurt of acid sprayed forth from the keyholes on his person and his tools. Bali splashed him with water, to help of course! Upon reaching the next part of the caravan was another locked double doored compartment. Thom this time was able to disarm the trap and recover it with help from Ostane. The lock was troublesome but without the need for urgency he finally conquered the device.

Inside the team found an arsenal of weapons and armor for about thirty-five troops. In the far corner of the cart was a smaller chest. Inside was a scroll from Quartermaster Vexthrull to Minos spoke to supplying him a special request. Magic items were found in this chest. The group sorted through them attempted to find what they do but with little success.

The next order of business was trying to figure out how to get all these spoils mobile. Only one horse remained after Milton tried to help the beaten one on the ground. Thom had tamed the foul-smelling battle yak and tried to harness the yak. The creature reared and hate filled his eyes. Thom and Ostane planned to pull this cart themselves.

David then showed up out of nowhere. He spoke about the human refuges being taken by four legged horse guys. Luckily one of the Chernasrado rangers not long after sprinted to the group. The ranger confirmed the centaur tribe taken the human refuges. Their leader spoke of restitution for two members of his tribe dead. He wanted to meet the leaders of this band. The ranger had an idea to seek out the elder clan to try to help this situation. He needed help and Courage and Valoras were anted for that task.

With the multiple injuries the PC’s decided to camp for the night. Bali had a vivid dream that night. When he awoke he was telling everyone about it. Just before dawn Bali and Thom were on watch when Thom heard a clatter. Two ogres were spotted sniffing the air. The mated pair spotted the yak found it aroma enticing. The ogres were speaking giant which Ostane knew how to speak. Ostane felt the need to mock them. The party decided to fully engage and challenge the ogres for their meal. David was able to disarm both ogres’ great clubs. The group took a few hits from the ogres but the only true lose was the battle yak.

The crew started out to where they had left their refuge band of townsfolk. A thirteen-hour march got them to their destination. They did spot two centaurs shadowing them. They PC’s waved them over but the centaurs only said stay the course and we have no need to talk. When the group got a little off track the centaurs pointed them into the right direction.

When the group approached all the townsfolk were caged in a makeshift wooden semicircle prison. An older male centaur with only three legs stared at them. He held a staff in place of his missing limb to help support himself. He beckoned with his hand for them to come up. He had asked why they killed two members of his tribe. Thom spoke about them trying to poison them but the centaur leader didn’t seem pleased. Bali spoke to him and told him about this dream. The centaur said show me. Bali placed his tiny hands on the ground and each grew into a large bear, wolf, and panther prints. The centaur leader seemed perplexed at these signs. He merely said we will leave no doubt and let nature decide if your trespass was just or not. He asked them to pick wood, fire or earth. Bali instantly spoke up and said wood.

The centaur leader gave them healing and one night’s rest before the trail of wood. Bali did see a centaur preforming a ritual but failed to understand exactly what it meant. One more day passed until the night of the trail.

A humongous vine-wooden dome was formed with fireflies all around it causing it to light up. It was a true night time spectacle. The leader spoke of the rules, leave and you fail, die and you fail the trail meaning you are guiltily! The centaur tribe gathered around the domes circumference. The group stepped inside, only to be block by thick vines. A word was shouted and the thick vinery retracted into the dome. On the other side of the dome stood an enormous treant. Thom applied his salve, David flew to the top, Bali got his cloak out, and Ostane started to engulf his potions. The treant attacked and the battle began! The PC’s were successful in their trail and the leader simply said you are free to go. The people started to shout calling Constable Milton, The Savior Constable Milton!

(Ostane, Bali, Thom, Milton, David)

EXP Rewards: 810 – Fast Track

Rewards: Off Dead Hobgoblins – Alchemist formula book, various weapons, and four strange bombs on a bandolier (researchable once a day)

Cart – (1,600 Lbs.)

Scroll from Quartermaster Vexthrull to Minos, 2,300 gold, 1 recovered acid trap 3D6, arsenal of weapons/armor shields – outfits 35 troops

leather armor/ light steel shields / daggers / longswords /spears

20x Ironfang Legion Banners

30X Armbands

20 × 50 feet ropes

150x food rations

25x small tents

25x manacles

Small journals (written in goblin):
35 copies of Legend of Azaersi (Promotes the cause and instructs to kill humans first and foremost)

Magic items:

Amulet of natural armor +1

3x Oil of Darkness

4x horseshoes of speed (Special)

Burglar’s Bracers

bastard sword +1 w/ Corrosive

2x Stone Salve

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