Providence's Torment

The Shadow's Secrets
Session 10

Sevsday, 18th Rainfall 1345 AF

Before setting out to venture back into the underground cave beneath Stormcliff, the party went and got themselves a few pickaxes and a few vials of Alchemist's fire. These tools should come in handy when trying to collapse the entries to the cave, as agreed with Gorun.

Back inside the cave, they first further investigated it before heading back into the other realm through the stone circle. There were a couple more larger caverns apart from the one, where they fought the black dragon. Both caverns housed some remnants of their former habitants, the kobolds and lizardmen, but nothing more.

Using the same play of the light and darkness on the stone circle the party opened up the portal. Stepping through, they were once again in the bleak parallel world. Remember the shadowy dragon form in one part of the cavern they decided to investigate the rest first, following the fleshy breathing vines across the walls deeper inside. As they continued on the vines on the walls grew ever more dense until the rocky walls beneath were no longer visible. Eventually the vines even covered the ground, which made walking even more difficult.

While cautiously walking towards the open cave, which housed the kobolds in their world, the party heard noises and murmurings. Draenir and Winter scouted ahead. They entered the cave and saw it entirely covered with these vines. In the far end of the cavern, there was an old mausoleum, and in the middle of the cave there was a black and white statue with feathery wings. Draenir and Winter continued walking into the cave, wanting to take a closer look at the statue. However, after only a few steps Draenir suddenly couldn't walk anymore, and the cause of the murmurings revealed itself. Three slimy, fleshy masses of eyes and mouths crawled out of the vines and started attacking the group, felling Winter in one fell swoop. Thorin's healing magic managed to prevent the worst from happening though. Zanna had been knocked out during the fight and would not wake up after those abominations had been slain. Even Thorin dropped unconscious after the fight. Yoralia managed to reveal though, that both Thorin and Zanna were affected by some kind of magic.

They did not get the chance to investigate further as the statue came to life and attacked the group claiming to be a guardian and that they were intruding. The creature, however, was clearly mad as it kept incoherently laughing throughout the battle and not very open to conversation. But in its madness the creature was no match to group and eventually faded into nothingness.

After dragging the unconscious bodies of Thorin and Zanna back out of the cave und putting up a shelter, Draenir, Yoralia and Mialee went back to investigate the mausoleum. All the vines seemed to originate from the mausoleum. As they got closer they saw the coloured glass windows where the vines had broken through. Some imagery of the windows was still recognizable. One part looked like a kneeling tiefling, and another looked like a dismembered body. Inside the mausoleum was one single sarcophagus. It was Yoralia that heard a voice in her head asking to be freed, as it had been imprisoned unjustly by the gods eons ago.

After debating with the rest of the group, even Thorin and Zanna who woke up from their deep slumber. The decision fell to open the sarcophagus and free whatever was inside. Inside was skeletal hand and forearm with only a very thin layer of rotten flesh left. The hand attached to Yoralia's necklace, changing it, rendering it more powerful. And then, everyone blacked out.

 

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Ashes of Guilt
Session 9

Tiemsday, 16th Rainfall 1345 AF

The party leaves the city south-eastward out of the city, along the steep cliff coast. Over the day the cliff grows smaller and smaller until all there was left of it was a rocky beach. They set up Teron's funeral pyre next to a small river mouth. As it was already getting dark they also set up camp nearby.

There rest, however, was disturbed by a pack of wolves, led by an Ettin, and his two dire wolves. A few well placed fire arrows kept by Draenir and Mialee kept the wolves at bay, and allowed Zanna to talk to them and find out that these wolves did not come with good intentions. However, this distraction allowed Thorin, with Winter's help, to put on his full plate armour.

When the fight started the wolves were quickly dispatched and the Ettin surrendered soon after. He told the party he was send by Karash, the Powerful or Karash, the Red to follow two Ogres and the tracks eventually led him to them. The Etting further divulged information about Karash's location. He is situtated within the Thyran Woods close to where the two mountain ranges (The Eldritch Heights, and the Whispering Rise) meet. The party then struck the final blow to the Ettin out of fear he would report back to Karash.

Fensday, 17th Rainfall 1345 AF

After their ruff night the party made their way back to Stormcliff without any further surprises.

Sevsday, 18th Rainfall 1345 AF

The party met with Gorun in the morning to ask about the city guards further investigation into the bandits. While no sign of their leader was found, a few left behind documents indicated another mage, simply referred to as a silver wizard, was in play.

Their next course of action was to head back into the cave beneath the city, and continue their exploration beyond the stone circle. A quick stop at Mira's shop, however, was in order to see whether she had already finished Draenir's dragon armour. Unfortunately, Winter was a little to excited and when the shopkeep told them the armour wasn't ready yet and there was nothing that could be done to speed up the process, she resorted to threats and promptly got the party banned from shopping at Mira's again. Only, Draenir is allowed to return to pick up the armour, once it's finished.

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Walk of Flame
Session 8

Worsday, 15th Rainfall 1345 AF

Finding their way back to the Known Oysters Tavern in the early morning, the party was eager to get some sleep. They woke up in the afternoon to an empty tavern as everyone was gone to participate in the midsummer festivities. The party quickly followed suit and found the marketplace abuzz with the sounds of music and people.

While walking over the marketplace they partook of the food and watched the challengers of the Walk of Flame. Winter and Yoralia were among the challengers. While Winter put in a valiant effort, she just could not take the pain anymore and fell unconscious before reaching the end. Yoralia, with some inspiration from Winter and her natural Tiefling resistance to fire managed to finish the Walk of Flame without breaking much of sweat. Winter's feet were in need of some immediate magical attention, which Thorin happily provided. While the worst damage was healed, Winter's feet were still in a very bad shape and would require continuous healing over the next few days.

Oruf, a large man of muscular statue, and previous challenger of the Walk of Flame witnessed Thorin's healing capabilities wanted some help for his feet as well. Thorin provided, but not before having Oruf agree to be in the party's debt.

After getting some crutches for Winter, the party continued walking across the marketplace and enjoying the festivities. They quickly noticed however, that they were being followed. Draenir vanished into the crowd and began stalking the stalker, an elderly human man wearing simple clothing and a tattered mantle. The man was clearly hiding something beneath it, but it was impossible to make out what. The party decided to lure him away from the festivities and took a turn into side alley. As soon as they entered the mouth of the street the man closed the distance and took a swing at Winter with a short sword, while shouting that they were no heroes as they did not manage to save his wife. Draenir, being quick on his feet lunged after him and stuck his venomous dagger into the man's back. The man sank to his knees and dropped dead.

The party was unsure of how to handle this particular situation and were clearly at odds. Winter and Yoralia wanted to try and see if they could help and be honest, while the rest took a more cautious approach and wanted to cover up what happened to avoid any murder accusations. Eventually they put the body in the bag of holding, cleaned up the blood and decided to keep what happened to themselves but provide Teron with an appropriate burial, and maybe offer amends to any remaining relatives. Either way the party's enjoyment of the festivities was ruined and they decided to retire back to the tavern. On the way they stopped and had a quick chat with Tilby.

Tiemsday, 16th Rainfall 1345 AF

The conversation with Tilby the day before, and a look through the city archives revealed Teron had a daughter called Brida, last seen In Ialdar.

The party also informed Gorun, about the cave underneath the city, filled with green Lizardmen, Kobolds and even a black Dragon. A little confused and worried how the cave could go unnoticed, Gorun asked the party to further investigate the caves and if possible to collapse the entrances. After the meeting, in preparation for their further adventures, the party used the different bits and pieces gathered from the dragon to craft trinkets and armors.

Their first point of order will take the party outside the city to provide Teron with a proper burial.

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A Play of Darkness and Light
Session 7

Taithday, 14th Rainfall 1345 AF

Their hearts still pumping from the adrenaline the party began to slowly recover from the gruelling fight. They began resting, cutting up the dragon for its parts and looting its hoard.

Worsday, 15th Rainfall 1345 AF

The process of looting took them well into the night, and got even interrupted by a group of lizardmen and a pack of kobolds. One of the lizardmen, clad in flowing tattered robes and holding an old wooden twisted staff, stepped forward. The lizardmen proposed a deal. The party had slain the reason for their presence, and would thus like to return to the swamp and not further bother the city. As a sign of good faith, they released their last prisoner, Marek, a purveyor of exotic goods.

The party agreed to the deal and finished their rest. By the time they were ready to continue the kobolds and lizardmen had already left. Exploring the cave further they found an old stone circle with one center stone, and 8 surrounding stones. The stones were human-sized menhirs. Some had holes in them and the stone in the middle had text written on both sides:

"In darkness, there is nothing. In shadow, it is hidden. In time forgotten. In light, it is revealed."

"In light, there is knowledge. In shadow, there is control. In time forgotten. In darkness, there is ignorance."

Puzzling over the meaning of the words and the magical properties of the stone circle the party managed, with clever use of light and darkness, to open a portal which immediately swallowed Yoralia. Winter followed shortly afterwards. Both of them appeared in a black and gray parallel world which seemed to copy the real world. It was not an identical copy however. Some terrain features were different. The parallel world for instance only had one menhir instead of a circle. That stone had no text, but a small circular hole. Yoralia's amulet perfectly fit the whole and opened a portal back to the real world.

Still wounded and exhausted from their fight with the dragon, the party decided to leave the exploration of that parallel world for another day and travelled back to town, arriving in the early morning.

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Nerondraxis
Session 6

Taithday, 14th Rainfall 1345 AF

When the party woke up in the morning they set out to deliver the dead Lizardman body to the city guard. Not wanting to give away the magical bag of holding in their possession, the party loaned Pedro, a donkey belonging to the Known Oysters Tavern, to carry the dead body.

After dropping the body off and informing the city guard of what had happened they went to Tilby, to get an experts opinion on the poorly drawn map they recovered from the Lizardman. After a quick investigation Tilby informed them that the map pointed towards an underground cave system, and that the entrance was most likely underwater beneath the Compendium Arcanum's chapter house.

Now that they knew where the cave was, the problem was getting there. The entrance was underwater and would either require them to hold their breath or find a way to breath underwater. Their initial thought was to go to the temple of Mael, where they found help indeed. Stormbringer Valeria made the proposition that 2 additional helpful soul could accompany the party. Torin was a priest of Mael himself and had ways to allow the party to breath underwater. Nulara was a druid of some skill and the water did not prove much of an obstacle for her.

With their new companions in tow, the party set out to investigate the underwater cave. They waited until nightfall before heading into the ocean with the help of Torin's magical necklace. Fighting against the weight of the water they managed to advance slowly until the found the entrance to the cave. Climbing inside they were greeted by darkness and an acidic smell. Draenir snuck ahead to scout out the cave and found pit, filled with dead, partially dissolved and eaten bodies.

The cause of the disfigured bodies and acidic smell quickly revealed itself, as Nerondraxis, a young black dragon, rose from its slumber. A vicious fight broke out between the party and the young dragon. Using all their resources and their wits they managed to kill the dragon before it could escape.

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Dangers in the Deep
Session 5

Sevsday, 12th Rainfall 1345 AF

It was a day of rest and preparation for the party. Provisions were purchased, those of the usual and those of a more unusual nature. Winter went to get herself a customized breastplate, with a white orchid engraved across the chest. Negotiations were hard, but she managed to come to an agreement with Mira Blackhammer's store clerk. Healing potions were also on the party's shopping list, but were deemed to expensive.

Draenir used his contacts in the Shroud to get his hands on some more exotic poison materials and spend the rest of the day preparing his deadly concoctions. Additionally to the ingredients Draenir was also interested in some information about Anzin and the Dragonband bandits. Hildo required payment upfront for the information as nothing is for free. Draenir begrudgingly agreed. In the end the information provided was not to Draenir's satisfaction, but Hildo closed the conversation with the immortal words: "Sometimes you make a good deal, and sometimes you make a bad deal."

Maelsday, 13th Rainfall 1345 AF

The following day it was time for Yoralia's induction into the Compendium Arcanum. She took the Acolyte's Oath in a public ceremony, which was rather well visited as the name of the party began to spread through the city after the attack of the demons.

After the ceremony the party prepared to take a boat trip at night into the harbor to lure whatever is abducting people out into the open. Winter's friend Khori from the tavern was willing to provide the party with a boat for the night. While silently drifting on the waters Draenir was putting out a lure and promptly caught a big Stormscale Salmon specimen. Not exactly the prey he was hoping for he continued fishing until something much stronger pulled on the lure. Draenir managed to stay put on the boat, but the beast would not let up. Rather than pulling on the lure the beast tried to bush the boat over, revealing itself to be a Lizardfolk in the process. Yoralia and Winter were thrown into the water. The lizardman quickly grabbed Yoralia and tried pulling her further down. With her last breath of air she managed to teleport herself out of the lizardman's grasp. Mialee and Draenir helped their partners back into the boat. The lizardman, however, would not let up and attacked the boat again. Yoralia was prepared though, as she crushed the lizardman's head with one single unleashing of her arcane powers.

The party put the body of the dead lizardmen into their Bag of Holding, and returned to the town to rest up for the night.

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Abyss Unleashed
Session 4

Tiemsday, 10th Rainfall 1345 AF

Back in Stormcliff, the party did not know if the necromancer was still in the city as Mialee's magic had faded by now. They set out to investigate anyway, in the hope that his wounds kept him from leaving. The party's inital efforts were focussed on Regent Rock, the noble district of Stormcliff. Using Winter's and Mialee's noble heritage and Yoralia's and Draenir's illicit expertise, the party forged a document which was sure to get them onto Regent Rock. However, their plans were foiled by a very keen eyed guard.

While wandering the markets after their initial setback, they picked up a few stories of what had happened while they were gone. Two things caught their interest: A commotion in the Compendium Arcanum guild hall, and a further citizen disappearing in the harbor at night.

Hildo Growes, a contact Draenir had before coming to Stormcliff could corroborate these events. He added though, that while the Compendium claimed the commotion to have been a mishap of an arcane experiment, he did not believe them. According to his sources there was a man running out of the guild hall during the night, shortly after the commotion.

Yoralia and Mialee could later confirm that story while talking to Mesim, inside the public library of the Compendium Arcanum guild hall. All the while, Draenir was keeping watch outside the guild hall for any suspicious activity.

Winter befriended a dockworker, named Khori in a local tavern, getting some more information about the disappearance in the harbor and about an elderly couple, who had recently taken a wounded Elf into their care.

Draenir noticed an Elf coming from the harbor district, looking a bit out of place among the more sturdy dockworkers that usually pass by. He decided to keep an eye on the Elf and started to tail him through the city to the house of an elderly couple.

After the party joined up again and exchanging information they decided to take a closer look at the Elf. Their plan was for Winter and Mialee to disguise themselves to avoid being recognised and approach the house, while Draenir and Yoralia were to hide next to the window and be ready in case anything went wrong. And something did go wrong. While walking to the door to open for Winter, the elf spotted Draenir through the window, recognized him and immediately bolted for a side room. At least, the party were now quite confident that th elf was in fact the necromancer they were seeking.

Yoralia took the initiative and immediately teleported into the room after the Elf, only to see he had taken the old lady as a hostage and held a dagger to her throat. Magical runes were glowing across her forehead. The party, not in the mood to negotiate, attacked. The necromancer, however, was ready and slit the lady's throat. An explosion of arcane energy blew the house to pieces. Rather than crashing into adjacent houses, the flying debris was held aloft in mid air by a magical force, and where once stood the old lady there was now a red swirling portal. It did not take long for demons to start coming through the portal. One of them grabbed the necromancer and threw him into the portal. After a hard fought battle the party managed to defeat the demons and close the portal.

Fensday, 11th Rainfall 1345 AF

The following day, the party met with Gorun and Melron, the Arcanist of the local Compendium Arcanum guild hall. Their initial reaction was one of shock and surprise as Melron looked exactly like the necromancer they fought. It was then revealed that the necromancer was in fact Melron's twin brother Ardion. Ardion had once been a member of the Compendium Arcanum, but was thrown out due to dabbling in forbidden magics. Melron assured the party that Ardion was mostly likely dead, as he would not survive for very long on the home plane of those demons.

Gorun and Melron thanked the party for their efforts in dealing with Ardion and promised that further work for the city would be quite lucrative. After some negotiating the party and Gorun came to terms, putting the party now into the city's employ. In a private conversation between Yoralia and Melron, Yoralia's application to become a member of the Compendium Arcanum was accepted.

While the party went after the necromancer the city guard did not stand idly by. Gorun had sent a troop to go after the Dragonband bandits. Unfortunately their excursion was not such a resounding success. While they managed to defeat most of the bandits, a lot of guards lost their lives in the process and Anzin, the leader of the bandits, managed to escape. From talking to Stane, one of the surviving guardsmen, the party learned that Anzin was wielding a flaming warhammer, and that there was a mage amongst the bandits.

 

 

 

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Ogre Trouble
Session 3

Taithday, 8th Rainfall 1345 AF

While resting up after the battle with the necromancer, the party noticed a pair of Ogres approaching the temple ruins. While Draenir and Mialee were hiding, as Ogres do find Elves quite delicious, Winter and Yoralia engaged the Ogres in conversation. They found out that the Ogres were sent here by Kharesh, the Powerful to look for Goblins and bring them back. After Draenir and Mialee successfully snuck out of sight of the Ogres, the party left making their way back towards Millfair.

Worsday, 9th Rainfall 1345 AF

During the night, the Ogres drunkenly walked into town causing quite a ruckus. They were looking for food. The party decided to lure the Ogres outside of town to prevent further damage to Millfair. Once outside of town a fight broke out and the party had to kill the Ogres.

After resting up once again, the party left in the morning back towards Stormcliff.

 

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The Lair of the Necromancer
Session 2

Taithday, 8th Rainfall 1345 AF

The following morning the party set off towards an old ruined temple, a few hours outside Millfair, where the Goblins had been sighted. They approached cautiously, but nonetheless found themselves fighting the Goblins, which had set up camp inside the ruins.

After the fight they searched for clues as to the whereabouts of the necromancer. While most of the former temple was in ruins, some featureless statues of deformed and crippled people were still in good condition. In an old back room, the party discovered some stairs leading down, where they found the necromancer in the process of raising zombies.

A brutal fight broke out, which the necromancer only barely managed to escape via teleportation magic. Through Mialee's magic, however, the party knew that the necromancer was back in Stormcliff. Rather than rush off immediately they decided to further investigate the lair. They found the stolen bodies and burned them.

The ritual magic left behind by the necromancer seeped into stone statue resembling those upstairs in the temple, but this one was neither deformed or crippled. The statue asked the party for hand, but rather than give one the party decided to break off the statue's hand. The magic flowed back out of the statue and into the wall behind it, opening a secret room containing a single amulet, The Eye of Poliel.

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Troubled Stormcliff
Session 1

Maelsday, 7th Rainfall 1345 AF

Having just recently arrived in Stormcliff, Winter and Mialee, as well as Draenir and Yoralia found themselves in the Known Oysters Tavern, a middle class establishment. During the few days already spent in the city, they learned about the city's current issues: the Dragonband bandits roaming outside the city walls, a necromancer stealing fresh bodies, and a few strange unsolved disappearances.

During their evening in the tavern they noticed two of the Dragonband bandits. Feeling the urge to help, they decided to confront the bandits. A fight broke out, which was won however with the help of Stane and a few other guards. While one of the bandits could be captured the other found an untimely end.

The death of the bandit lured the necromancer to the tavern. Teleporting in with a pack of Goblins, the freshly formed party was overwhelmed. The necromancer quickly grabbed the dead body and disappeared again.

After resting up for a little bit Winter, Mialee, Draenir, and Yoralia decided to band to together and start fresh in the morning. They spent the morning gathering more information about the necromancer, and after coming to an agreement with Gorun, the guard captain, the party headed off to Millfair where Goblin sightings had been reported.

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