Earthynn Adventure Log 2 – The Rescue of Thri Flamebeard
A Brief Breakfast
The party enjoyed a tasty breakfast of fish muffins and squid bacon , rested and recuperated from the previous trials… when a grizzled man and his large grizzled companion entered the tavern. The man introduced himself as Charleston, the finest archer, and lead hunter in Seaburgh. His aged features and stern countenance lent the news he brought carry more weight. The body of Liara was found along the river bank. He lightened the dark mood with news of hope. Thri Flamebeard may still be alive… oh, and the Ogre is still out there… Charleston offered to lead the party to the Ogre.. they set out post haste.
The travel had been fairly uneventful, the lack of bees and wildlife was disturbing, and made for a quiet walk. The party had at time, felt to presence of eyes watching them, following them.. but saw no sign of anyone. After close of two days of travel, the party set up for camp. Maresk Thorntongue drew the last watch, and just before dawn… heard a tremendous amount of rustling in the bushes. The party arose and scouted out the scene… Flying mosquito-like bug/bat/bird things (stirges) circled a struggling kenku who was all tangled up in some horrible blood-craved plants. After some preliminary attacks the party decided to team of with the Kenku to best the evil foliage and the opportunistic stirges. The Kenku was far sneakier than his brethren, and after the plants were subdued darted behind a rock to hide. The party spotted him, and interrogation began…
The Kenku was tied up and the questioning began.. the chaotic finger of Nowhere and the draconic lungs of Tannim were enough to sway the bird to speak. He cackled out his name in his bird language and revealed he was ordered to spy on the town of Seaburgh and later his orders changed to spy on the party. When asked who gave him the orders.. he simply said “She did”.. He did not know her name, or refused to speak it. There was a bit of fear behind his eyes when mentioned “her”. He caw’d to be let go, that he would stop following them.. he was no threat to them.. His whimpering and cawing was too much for the mighty Goliath whose frustration got the better of him and he wacked the bird of the noggin. Now fearing for his life, the kenku became even more loud and annoying.. and readied himself for battle. Before more needless blood was spilled the soothing tones of Dyrge brought everyone back to a more reasonable state. The party was then able to glean a bit more information.. the location of the hidden rebel base…Dantooine. I mean… Murasha… their roost was in a ruined watchtower outside the ruins of Port Murasha. But there were still Ogres to defeat and dwarves to rescue.. so the bird was released and the party continued on.
At the Court of King Drooj
They reached the clearing where the Ogre was said to be residing.. and they quickly spotted him. He sat atop an old overgrown dwarven Gate Hold. The Gate Hold was a squat solid stone structure sticking out of a large hill. The Ogre had made himself at home, fire, piles of hides for sleeping.. and looked settled in for a long haul. The party decided to split up and have the Dyrge approach him and speak with him. The others followed him under the tree cover, or went around to take position above the orge on the hill. Dyrge Warsmith approached and engaged the Ogre in a dialogue.. or sorts. The Ogre seemed proud and defiant toward the dwarf, proclaiming his kingship over the “dwarf castle”. King Drooj was his name.. and he stubbornly refused to allow Dyrge to enter his castle. Dyrge’s diplomatic skills only got him so far in the negotiations with the self-proclaimed king. It became obvious to the others that Drooj seemed to be under the effects of some kind of charm… not fully himself. Drooj told of the others who were inside with their friend, and that he was unsure if the dwarf was alive. Then, a bargain.. Dyrge offered to play a song from the mighty king. Then.. the music.. oh the bagpipes! The pipes, the pipes they were a blowin’! Drooj was intrigued at first.. and then sat down to listen to the dwarf’s piping…enthralled. The bag pipes seemed to due the trick, the ogre allowed Dyrge to enter the Hold as along as he promised to play again for him on his way out. Dyrge, alone, entered the Hold. After some quick scouting the Dwarven forged hold the sneaky dwarf stepped on a rat, and seemed to alert the current residents of the structure… fleeing, he made it to the door before being discovered. Warily, he exited, played his pipes for Drooj , and once again asked to enter, this time with his friends. The Ogre agreed, as long as the dwarf agreed to owe him a “favor”. The party emerged from their hiding and entered the Gate Hold.
Intruders at the Gate
The inner hallways of the Gate Hold were adorned with ancient heraldic shields that depicted the symbol a tower breaking in half. The party’s historic knowledge told them this was the Gate Hold of the Tower Breaker Clan. The explored the hallways.. and came to the room where Dyrge was almost discovered.. the door was closed… so the mighty Dragonborn Tannim walked up to it… and knocked. The startled residents turned out to be gnomes. One wearing dark armor and a wielding a short sword; the other wore a long trench coat and brandished an evil book… or sorts. The short conversation and survey of the room left no doubt of the pair’s foul intentions.. they wanted the great ornate door at the far end of the room, and had tried to use Thri to open it. Battle ensued. Strange motes of shadow detached from the seeming “normal” shadows to hinder the party. The gnome in the trench coat turned out to be quite a spellcaster and his Curses and Eldritch Blasts, combined with his illusion magic, made him a formidable foe. The gnomes exchanged some words.. “she sent us help” and on cue, three fell taints appeared.. firing beams of pure hate at the party.. their writhing twisted forms floating in the air. The battle was long and fierce, but in the end the roguish gnome was captured.. the other foes all dead.
Interrogating the gnome revealed he was hired by the gnome arcanist to open the large door. So far, they had failed. He also did not know much of the mysterious “she” that had been mentioned. The two gnomes also both had matching tattoos on their chests… that of a 7-pointed star. The arcanist’s book revealed that they were attempting to open the door as well, but were not getting anywhere. And on the inside of the book, was the same star symbol, but modified to have two wavy lines across the star image. (the book also contained a ritual) The roguish gnome would not reveal the origins of the tattoo.. saying he would rather die first.
The Almost Final Resting Place of Thri Flamebeard
The party scouted out the rest of the Hold, discovering a room which was an old barracks… and a painting adorned the wall of an a band of dwarves storming a tower and bringing it to ruin. In another room, an old armory, they found Thri , diseased and unconscious lying on the floor… they came to his aid.. and after exploring the room, found a hidden vault in the wall containing a few magic items, a shield with a saying scratched onto the back of it, and lots of rats. The rats were easily dispatched. Thri’s fever was bad, but it was determined Thri would pull through.
The Gate Opens
Through various extrapolations.. reviving Thri for info, studying the door, examining the painting, and the shield with the saying scratched into it (“the clan rises”) the party determined a pass-phrase was needed to open the magically sealed door. The pass phrase needed to contain four keywords spoken in the correct order to open the door. Through some trial and errors, the examining of some arcane energies surrounding the door, the party determined the pass phrase. “As The Tower Crumbles, the Clan Rises” The ancient stone door of the Tower Breaker Clan Gate Hold swung open.
Inside was simple room, with no other doors. A pair of finely crafted dwarven statues stood vigil across the room, a pair of stone Tower Breaker legionnaires. Upon entering the room a stone of floor revealed itself to be a door going down into the earth. However; before they could reach it, horrible spears erupted from the ground.. a trap had been sprung! And at the same time.. the statues stepped off their pedestals and engaged the party. The statues were simple, yet stalwart foes.. and the spear trap was an troublesome hazard. In the end, the statues were reduced to rock and the spears stopped. The portal in the floor revealed a dark opening into the earth. The group opted for prudence over blind bravery, and closed up the door in the floor. They licked their wounds, sealed up the magic door behind them, gathered up their sick friend and their gnomish prisoner, and headed for home.