Earthynn Adventure Log 1
Explorers Needed – Apply Within
Dinner by the Bay
The quaint little town of Seaburgh doesn’t get many visitors, most of its population are regulars and residents. The town sits alone on the coast of a large bay full of fish. The people know it is full of fish, because that’s pretty much all they do… fish. And all they eat…fish. However; on this very night there were visitors. In fact, there were eight. Some had been around for a bit, others just newly strolled into town. This was an opportune time for visitors, as the mayor of Seaburgh had need of explorers.
The eight visitors gathered about in the tavern, awaiting the arrival of the mayor (whom the townsfolk say is a tough woman to track down). The meeting room of the tavern held a long wooden table about which sat a menagerie of people. Some were big, some were small, and some jolly and brimming with laughter and spiked helms. A human wanderer named Maresk Thorntoungue, who seemed as much at home in the wilds as in the city. A Dragonborn named Tannim who shined like brazen brass inside and out. A stoic and complicated Tiefling who travels anywhere and everywhere and is known as Nowhere. A Dwarf named Dyrge Warsmith with copper eyes and top-knot whose spirit could swell a crowd as intensely as his bagpipes. A rogue-ish halfling who revealed little about himself, not even his name. A Golaith that towers over the others with his tower-sized hammer, revealed little of himself but his name, Rothak Bataar. Thri Flamebeard’s dwarven laugh and red beard drew much attention during the dinner, but his good nature soothed all. Liara, the Eladrin mage; however, took great care not to draw attention to herself, but rolled her eyes a lot at the uncivilized nature of the motley dinner party. The eight strangers conversed and enjoyed the taverns hospitality. Outside through the window of the tavern’s meeting room, the waves crashed upon the coast and in the distance the ruins of the great port city of Murasha stood like an conglomerate of shadowy sentinels reeking of foreboding doom. They group was eager to explore said city of ruins.. though it would not be their destination this night. A halfling waitress shuttled in large trays of drinks and food, sliding each onto the table with effort, but always cheery, un-phased even by the pats on the butt from the dragonborn. After bringing in the final round of drinks, the waitress removed her apron and hopped up on a chair at the end of the table and introduced herself as Clara Clove, mayor of Seaburgh (and part-time waitress at the Bayside Tavern).
Her dark auburn hair was pulled up revealing her aging features. Her eyes sparkled and her green-gemstone earrings glittered as she recounted a tale of the stagnation of Seaburgh… The town has been stifled in its growth due to lack of outside contact. In order for the town to grow and prosper a reliable and ready trade route needs to be established.. new residents, industry, commerce, and contact from other towns and cities is needed. This is where the explorers come in to her plan. A visitor had shown up in Seaburgh a while back claiming to be from a town north along the river, maybe about 5 days travel. Using the river as a trade route between the two towns would allow increased commerce for both, and allow a ready waypoint for further trade with the great city of Gerhbonne to the north. They devised a plan to send some sailors up river to find this town, sadly, those sailors never returned. The new plan is to have these explorers travel up along the coast of the river by foot and scout out any hazards and dangers, map trouble spots, find the town, and return to Seaburgh with the information. Seeing as there was conveniently eight explorers in attendance, Miss Clove divided them into two groups of four, each taking a different bank of the river.
West Bank Excursion:
A Walk in the Park
The early legs of the journey were pleasant. The spring breeze blew at the backs of the stalwart west-bank exploration party and the gently soothing sound of bagpipes filled their footsteps with glee. A Tiefling, a Dwarf, a shifty Human, and a Dragonborn strolled up the river unaware of the dangers looming ahead…
Parliament of Crooks
It was on the second day that during their travels they encountered the sound of familiar laughter… a loud raucous dwarven laughter coming from the river up ahead. Upon investigation… there appeared to be a dwarven sized lump bobbing in the water just on the edge of the river. Dwarvish laughter mixed with gargling river water is odd enough, but when its supposed to be on the other side of the river it becomes even more alarming. The stalwart Dragonborn Tannim rushed to his aid, but upon closer inspection.. the dwarf was just a log doing a grand job of impersonating a dwarf! Gads! Foul log! But then the scaly, talon-ed feat of the real perpetrator vaulted it atop a log near at the river side. The crow cackled from behind his hooded cloak, revealing his black feathers and long spiked chain. His skills at impersonating dwarves was uncanny and his trap was sprung. Many others of these dark feathered men (later identified as Kenku) sprang from the trees.. some wielding stout clubs, others brandishing pairs of wicked talon-esque daggers. A quick and hard battle ensued as the explorers closed in to meet their avian adversaries. The Kenku’s ringleader caw’d orders to his birdly soldiers, directing them during the battle, all the while cawing and cackling at the party. They were; however, no match for the four explorers who combined their skills and brought about the deaths. The Kenku and their chain twirling ringleader were defeated.
Bugs from Below
Traveling ensued and after a some distance was covered the land beneath their feet, the weather and the river itself, all took a turn for the worse. The land became as swampy and deeply muddy as they approached the wetland area of the river. The weather also turned soggy, as the sunny breezy hours gave way to gusty rain filled hours, making travel a little less enjoyable and little more slow. But the river made the most direct change, and the once easily sail-able river put forth a rapid-inducing waterfall. Not one of great height, but one that would lead any northern going vessel to take to disembark and travel by land to pass it. This was indeed the case for the Seaburgh excursion as upon closer investigation, a river gong boat was found out of the water and and appeared to have been hastily dropped near some trees and left in a seemingly non-water-worthy state. Peculiar.
It was during the mulling over of said peculiarity that the bug emerged… no ordinary bug, for it was huge.. a large ant-like creature with multiple legs, mandibles, antennae, and a hunger for humanoids. It attacked from some bushes with alarming speed and snatched up Maresk in its acid-dripping mandibles and dragged him away from the party towards the shrubs he emerged from. The startled explorers came to their senses and regrouped to slay this new foe. The Ankheg brought Maresk to the bushes, where there awaited several of the bug beast’s larvae, awaiting their dinner with gaping acid soaked mouths. The party rallied together to defeat this foul insect and its kin, surviving the gripping mandibles and sprays of burning acid. A much needed rest was needed, but the inquisitive instincts of the group took hold. A hole was found, a tunnel leading below the ground…
The short tunnel led into the earth and opened into a long cavern, obviously dug by the Ankheg as a brood nest. The first thing found in the nest was the smell… a sort of rotty, decaying smell. The remains of some giant bug eggs slurped in a pile along one wall, some partially eaten and decayed “food” (the remains of some poor Seaburgh sailors and other poor saps) were piled in the far corner amid various pools of sliminess and mold… and it was this very “sliminess” that attacked the poor dwarf who had crawled in to investigate. Two pools of grey colored ooze sprang into attack, as did a Green slime that was hanging out on the ceiling. During the fevered battle that ensued, some rocks came loose in the wall and a landslide became a slight complication to the battle. The durable explorers bested the grossness and shrugged off the rocks that pelted them.
Investigation of the “bodies” revealed the remains of the seaburgh river expedition and a poor lonely half-orc adventurer (who happened to have been very well equipped before he died.) The devout Dragonborn buried the remains of the fallen folk and the party gathered up their spoils of battle and moved on.
Something Weird this Way Comes
Further into the swamp they ventured.. occasionally spotting tracks of Kenku scrambling about in the mud. Late in that day a clearing was stumbled upon and flocks of crows picked at the ground and hopped about. At the far end of the clearing a group of Kenku gathered, huddled up and discussing their foul works. Dyrge looked off to his side and saw a lone crow hopping and pecking about, it looked up him inquisitively. Dyrge, being the good-natured animal-loving dwarf he is, tossed s bit of food down the the scroungy bird. The bird was delighted, so delighted that he caw’d and caw’d with glee. The Kenku at the far end of the clearing turned around at once and spied the gathered explorers. They assumed an attack formation, their flock instincts serving them well. Strange blurs in the air floated between them as another more sinister Kenku stepped up. He had white feathers mixed in with his black, his robes clung to his avian form and he shook his wicked staff in anger. The blurs in the air solidified some, but not wholly, and they appeared as strange masses of floating tentacles… but they were far from the wost thing that was seen that day. A huge floating, fleshy orb rose among them, it had one great huge eye and a gaping mouth dripping with hate. The tentacles about its head flitted about, each containing it own eye. All its eyes fixed on the exploration party.
A mighty battle ensued. Nowhere matched wits and arcane blasts with the foul Kenku Wingmage who had taken flight into a tree. The rest of the party sprang to action and began to dispatch the foul birds and their tentacled friends. The Foul Taint floating in the air wounded the minds of the party, their foul caresses chilling their souls with dark emotions. These creatures provided nuisances to the party as the Behold floated in and rained eye-rays down upon the party. The Beholder was wise enough to keep the large Dragonborn at bay with immobilizing eye-beams while it directed its more nefarious rays on the others. The battle drug on, but in the end our heroes were once again victorious. They bested the foul aberration and his lowly lackeys.
The Great Goblin Emancipation
The clearing was not made by chance…as it happens there was a collection of simple mud hovels gathered not far. They sat on an island in a ring of mud, a simple reed bridge spanned the mud, but had been trampled down by heavy avian feet. Most of the huts were rooted out, torn up and filled with black feathers, bird dung, and the leaving of flocks of nasty bird men. One hut however, was a goblin prison. A small group of goblins huddled in fear, tied up in the back of one of the huts. Some, lay still on the dirt floor. The explorers freed the wretched creatures, a small mercy to such pitiful creatures. The goblins told their tale of captivity, speaking of the sudden arrival of the Kenku . They spoke of a “bigger bird” who led them, one much scarier than the others. Beyond that they knew little beyond the confines of the prison.
The party traveled on, secure in the fact that their destination was not far, s the goblins had also informed them the town they sought was only a day travel by goblin feet. Though a goblin with said feet also decided to follow the party, and was found out quite quickly. He nervously told the party of the treasure he had buried to hide it from the Kenku , and he gave it to them as reward for freeing his people. The belt he pulled from the mud was indeed a magical treasure… After some more time, the welcome signs of civilization appeared, as did sheep.
Arrival in Sheep-town
The town of Munstown was a small agricultural town. They were known for raising livestock, mainly sheep and some other grazing animals. They were quite excited to see the adventurers and hear the tale of Seaburgh. Trade between the towns would indeed be a boon for the lives of all the citizens, and the head of Munstown, a Mr. Jonn Muston II, was ready to commit to the project. The party rested, but as of yet, the other expedition of explorers from the east side of the river had not arrived…
East Bank Excursion:
The goliath, the halfling, the eladrin, and the dwarf were ferried across the river by Seaburgh’s finest. They set out to begin their journey. A rushing river. Rolling hills. Fluffy clouds. These were the sights that were seen by the intrepid east bank expedition on its first couple days out. The spring breeze was warming and the dwarf’s tales were invigorating. Thri told tales of his journeys from here to there, from hill to vale, and everywhere in between; he even told them when no one was listening. As a traveling companion, few could be equaled. The party ventured on, some birds circled in the distance, crows flying in to scavenge some food no doubt. Nothing to worry about…
A Murder of Crow-like Beings
During their third day along the river, the land turned much more wooded than earlier, follow the river became a less direct a route. Paths were taken between the trees and underbrush, all the while staying as close to the river as they could. At one point they were forced to travel inward a ways from the bank due to some large hills strewn with rocks. The passage around the hill was difficult, as the ground seemed to reject visitors with roots, rocks and weeds. This hill also proved the perfect place to launch an ambush. The odd black feathered creatures sprung down from tree branches ready to reap the rewards of the stalking, but the brave travelers were not to be caught unawares. They braced to meet the ambush, their keen senses preparing them for such eventualities. The battle ensued… most of the bird creatures were simple ruffians, using crude clubs to bludgeon their foes… but the odd creature that came after them was enough to give pause to the party. A seemingly translucent ball of tentacles hovered in the air and glided down the hill, its foul presence corrupting the very air if wafted in. It writhed as tiny eyes opens in random spots and fired beams of pure emotional anguish upon the party. The mighty Goliath rushed to meet it, but his hammer passed though it s if it wasn’t even there… The halfling flitted among the Kenku awaiting the opportune moment to strike a deadly blow, while the stalwart Thri took on all comers. Liara stood back and sent waves of arcane energy into the foes. The distraction worked – with their attention on the foul thing on the hill, no one saw the Kenku stalking from behind. This one brandished a wicked sword and struck out from the shadows, nearly crippling Liara with one blow. Thri rushed to her aid just in time, leveling his axe against the sneaky Kenku’s chest. The battle raged on, and the party bested their assailants. They rested afterwords.. and odd realization was discovered. The body of the back-stabbing Kenku was nowhere to be found. Nothing could be done of it; progress must be made. The party set out to continue the exploration.
Signpost to the Past
As night approached, the explorers moved into the trees to secure a campsite for the evening. It was then that Liara noticed the strange bit of terrain. There was a odd stone obelisk in the area they chose to camp at. It stood about 4 feet tall, old, cracked, and covered with moss and age. Thri’s eyes lit up when he gazed upon it. he explained that it is a road sign, and ancient road sign pointing the way to one of the Gate Holds guarding the entrance to one of the Vein’s of the Earth (dwarven underground “roads”) Thri’s explanation was that this was an ancient one that had long been closed off.. but the Gate Hold may still be standing. Thri was ready to head off in search of it immediately, but the party talked him out of it and kept him on task.
Ogres in the Mist
The next morning found them back along the river’s edge, continuing the trek northward. The rain had began to fall during the night, and the ground remained hilly, wooded and rough. A thick mist drifted in along from the river. The morning walk brought them upon some disturbing tracks in the mud. Tracks that could only belong to a huge humanoid creature, and they were fresh. The dwarf and goliath were on edge immediately, both having knowledge of giants. These were tracks belonging to an Ogre. Just as the team was about to debate their next course of action a huge rock flew from out of the brush and struck Liara in the chest. her limp form tumbled into the trees. Thri instantly sprang to action and despite warnings from his fellows, charged into the bushes. He then immediately flew back out of the bushes as the Ogre’s club/tree trunk smacked into him. The Ogre strode out of the bushes laughing.. “HA.. Little Dwarf! Your dwarf castle belongs to us now! grunt” A battle ensued and it quickly became apparent it was a losing one. The party tried to regroup and flee, but the Ogre pressed on. Soon it became an all out run. The halfling sought out Liar’s form, but she was no more, her body broken. Thri urged the others to flee and took up a position in the rear of the party and at one point turned to slow the Ogre’s pursuit… it was the last time the others saw him. The mighty Goliath and the cunning halfling ran for the rest of the day and into the night. The Ogre gave up pursuit after a while, and when the party finally stopped to rest, they found they were deep in the woods, and lost. It took most of the following day to regain their bearings. They searched for a bit to try and locate Thri’s body, but were unable to. So they hit the river bank and continued the journey, hoping to find civilization and regain their strength and lick their wounds. Later the following day, they found their way to the river’s bend, and crossed over to arrive at Munstown battered, bloody and tired.
The Return to Seaburgh
The six explorers gathered together and made the journey back to Seaburgh along the west bank of the river. The return journey was uneventful other than some rainy weather. Upon arriving back in the village the explorers settled in for some rest. It took some time to locate Clara Clove, asking about, looking in the usual places, but word is eventually sent that she would meet up with the party back at the tavern. Dinner and drinks were free that night, as well as lodgings in the Inn for all of the surviving explorers. Clara also provides each member of the party with 5 Gold and 20 Silver. handed over to each in small bag. She also presents each person with a necklace… the necklaces are simple silver rectangles with an odd dark green shard of a gemstone set in the center. they are attached to a leather thong and Clara, standing on a chair for some, hangs it about each person neck. The gemstone shards are really odd, they are an odd dark green and seem to soak in the light. There is very nice etching along the silver taking the form of waves. Clara explains that they were crafted by a local artisan with a knack for jewelry. The gemstones however, have their own little story she explains. The town has taken to calling them Seaburgh Stones, and several have been found over the years since the town’s inception. Always found by the town’s hunters and usually near the ruins of Murasha . They became kind of a peculiarity among the townsfolk, and would get passed and traded all over the town. Some saw them as good luck, other bad. The inquisitiveness of the party always takes over, but after studying various properties of the stones, they are not magical. They seem to contain an almost faint touch of magic, more like a residual faded aura of some long lost enchantment. (They have no magical in-game properties that you can discern, and they do not count as taking up a neck slot item. Everyone should write Seaburgh Stone Amulet on their character sheets) Clara expressed her undying gratitude, and her excitement for Seaburgh’s future was palpable.