The party rested after their harrowing experiences with the reptile crab monsters and the bard used comprehend languages to listen in on their new human friends and figure out where they came from. He paraphrased to the rest of the party what was being said and eventually the humans caught on, the human cleric, named Ki-el, cast comprehend languages as well and explained clearer what their plight was. He and Phil came from the northern island and were captured by pirates of Wasted Wyrm. Their captor was Jasina, a tiefling pirate and known slave trafficker, who brought them to this island to trade with a strange satyr with black fur. They had been beaten and drugged and had awoken when the party was fighting off the horrible monsters in the pit. At this point they had no clue if they would be able to return home and would stick with the party as long as they needed to. The party was interrupted from the history lesson by two pixies that wandered over to see why a small military strike force was hanging out in the middle of the road. The party asked them about the roads and found out the minotaur city, Northpoint, they needed to go to was currently a day away and on fire, and when the party asked about the strange satyr with the bugs they learned about Kalish Blackfur, transmutation exile from Godmoot for breeding dangerous creatures as well as attacking caravans with a dragon that can melt metal with its breath. They informed the pixies of what they had seen and went off on their way, the pixies making their way to Godmoot to report with Ellendriana. Night fell and they made camp, finding their rest disturbed by a huge owlbear that not only was larger than normal, but also was undead and accompanied by four small twig creatures. The group made relatively quick work of the monsters and in the morning a selection of warriors tracked the owlbear trail to an out of place graveyard, leaving a few behind by the campsite. Most of the funerary practices on the island follow more cremation style traditions, the graveyard is more of a northern thing. The party found the cemetery was way older than originally thought and right outside its crumbled gates they found a large hole full of vines that looked like it could have held an owlbear skeleton. The lizard folk fighter/thief made his way into one of the four mausoleums and found a long rusted but still functional sword. As he left he noticed many of the vines surrounding the and inside the building were moving. The bard and the druid used magical divinations to figure out what the vines were and figure they are some kind of magical creature that is connected to all the vines and there is some kind of structure underneath the cemetery. The raven folk ranger remembered hearing of a corpse vine from a traveling storyteller that visited his forest home about high adventure on the seas and a boat being destroyed by similar vines and the swamp druid remembered assassin vines also much like these vines. The party decided to leave this area alone for now and come back later when better equipped. They rejoined the others and made their way to the outskirts of Northpoint. They could see its untouched lighthouse situated just east of the town up on the nearby hill as well as the still slightly smoking city. They went to the lighthouse to look for survivors and found two dead gnolls presenting with a case of spear wounds to the face, but no spear anywhere to be seen. The high walled fence held the party back momentarily. From their vantage point they could see large sails of a mighty ship in the port and what looked like figures moving parts of other ships and bound minotaur onto the largest ship, the rest of the ships looked looted or junked. As the party discussed options the monk climbed up and saw a sleeping female goliath resting against the lighthouse wall with a large spear at hand. The monk woke her carefully and the rest of the party joined them after the goliath, Gorast, opened the gates for them. They found out more about the gnoll raiders, there were about twenty left in town, two giant gnolls carrying minotaur, and their leader, the pirate. They asked for help raiding the town to free the minotaur and she declined, saying her place was here with the other survivors, but she would look for a friend that could or might help them. The group discussed a few off-putting plans when the tower guard came back with a wrinkly old goliath with tribal facial tattoos, and he seemed agitated being pulled away from his work. The party told them the basis of their plan and the old goliath used a lightning bolt to sunder the mast of the ship, the Wasted Wyrm. Then he had his guard carry him to the top of the lighthouse and he also created a bank of fog to sew confusion in the ranks of the enemies whilst cackling like a madman. The party watched as a small child minotaur looked around the door and asked if Feklin used magic again and its mother came to collect it and slam the door shut. The warband of adventurers made their way down to the fog covered town to hear the sounds of combat from within, the front gates wide open. it seemed survivors from the attack on the village were roused to combat as the fog filled the streets and the minotaur wanted to save their city. As they made their way in a large minotaur arm grabbed at the satyr paladin but before it struck him realized he was not a gnoll and let him go, the minotaur fading into the mist. The lizard folk fighter/rogue was able to stop the party from being torn apart by a hail of arrows launched from gnolls at the attacking minotaur. The satyr bard created an illusionary sound that corralled a few of the gnoll down another street, finding themselves down a well. the raven folk ranger was noticed by a large sized gnoll and the centaur barbarian beheaded it before it could do any harm. The lizardfolk druid stopped the party before they were trampled by minotaur, the catfolk ranger knocked over a minotaur merchants cabbage cart, much to the owner’s dismay. The catfolk monk dodged a hunk of still burning building that fell and was able to keep the party away from it. The catfolk warlock and blood hunter both stumbled out of the fog cloud and noisily made their way onto the long pier and were noticed by a group of gnolls. The fight was quick, there were only two normal gnolls and a large gnoll, the big one carrying two chained minotaur over its shoulders, one of which it dumped into the water as combat started. The lizard fighter dove into the water to save the minotaur, the rest of the party proceeded to beat the tar out of the gnolls. The centaur charged the large one dealing massive amounts of damage, the satyr bard charmed the two regular gnolls and cast hideous laughter on the big guy, causing him to fall over and be set upon by the rest of the party. The other two gnolls fell quickly.
Monday, June 11, 2018
June 6th of 2018, We started a new campaign and the game store with many of the same players as my last game store game. The game was taking place on an island controlled by a forest giant goddess that sends adventurers on missions to protect the realm from threats from outside. I described the game to them as Thundercats meets Narnia and gave them a tiny bit of information months back before we finished the last campaign. I let them choose from Goliaths, satyrs (eladrin elf stats), centaur, minotaur, cat folk, lizard folk, harpy, and crow folk. The island has a very Greek mythological feel to it as well, many familiar monsters will make appearances. The group made a chat group online and has discussed what they wanted to play, and I kept myself in the dark. When we gathered for the first session I sat down to four cat folk, a centaur, a crow person, two lizard folk, and two satyrs. We have a blood hunter, monk, ranger, and warlock cat folk, a centaur barbarian, a ranger crow person, a fighter and druid lizard folk, and a bard and paladin satyrs. The party gathered in the town of Godmoot to find out strange things were happening in the northlands in a small minotaur fishing village. On the first night of their journey they met a strange albino satyr named Keyhaw, he was a traveling storyteller one of the other satyrs had heard about in legends. He gave them background and rumors about the world and asked a few stories from them as well. In the morning he left, thanking them for the use of their fire and company, and the party headed north. They found two gnolls, strange bipedal hyena men, guarding what looked like a hole in the ground. The monk attempted to conversation with them and when that went sour the military strike team of a group backed him up and destroyed the two gnolls and investigated the ground hole. The entire party climbed down the earthen ladder inside and found a recently killed cow, a few pale fleshy hairless “humans”, and a hatching pile of eggs within the cow. As they attempted to break the eggs they heard muffled screaming from the next chamber as well and saw a few pink bodies being pulled apart by small reptilian crab creatures. The party fought them off and freed the two-remaining pink “men”, arming one with a knife and the other started healing the party. The two “men” did not share a language with the party so they were pantomiming with them to figure out what was going on. They killed seventeen of the odd monsters and three escaped into the walls, digging their way to the surface. The satyr bard used his fey power to return outside without having to climb and found a black furred satyr and four gnolls with a huge reptilian wolf creature up top. The black furred satyr had a stone whistle in his mouth and the remaining crab monsters climbed onto his outstretched arm. He asked what happened to the rest and the bard tried to deceive him, poorly. He fell victim to a holding spell and the party came up from the hole and attacked their new foes. The lizard folk fighter stabbed the black furred satyr in the chest with a sword so as a rebuttal the black furred satyr casually tossed a dagger into the lizard folk’s neck, knocking him out, and faded from view. The gnolls attacked and one of them ran the now dying lizard folk through the gut with his spear, the rest of the party flew to his defense, the monk also getting knocked out. Tactics mode kicked in as the group attempted to save their friends and slay their foes, the druid spraying poison onto a few of the attackers, ruining future attacks for them. The day was won and the healer ally helped fix the many wounds on the group, ensuring his own safety. They raided the gnolls both outside and down in the hole, where the other ones had fallen finding many spears and armor, which the “men” took as armor to hide their almost nakedness. The group survived first level and will arrive at their destination next session.
The party helped the city recover and after a month returned to the life of adventuring. They had been sent to investigate a strange fortress on foreign and potentially enemy soil where strange magically occurrences were happening. One they arrived they found the other group they were going to team up with murdered on the mountains side. They observed at the front door two guards letting in two well dressed men into the fortress. the two guards accompanied them inside and a few moments later came back out and one had blood on his sword. The party used illusion magic to look like another group of guards and claimed to be from the white regiment and were here to investigate the fortress and the guards were skeptical, to be fair the party was very skeptical of the guards. As they exchanged bluffs a mage stepped out of the keep and the gig was spoiled. The druid using his alter-self ability bit one of the guards and they noticed no blood on his outfit, his body was slimmer then it appeared, and the sword that hit him in return felt a lot like a great axe. The party made quick work of the door guards and realized they were dealing with changeling invaders. Horrible shambling could be heard from within the corridors and zombies started to approach the party, who then blocked the exit with a cart. The zombies attempted to climb under the cart and were soundly destroyed. The group snuck into the fortress and found a long blood-stained hallway devoid of life which eventually lead to a larger intersection with closed doors to the left, a hallway forward, and a hall to the right with a small door with voices coming from behind it. They investigated the voices first, both the bard and one of the artificers entered the chamber to find magical humanoids in large cells. The scarred tiefling informed them they were test subjects and the floor went out from the cells and all the monsters fell and were absorbed by the “machine”. The party ignored the room full of zombies and decided to enter the next room with a group going in each door, the druid and the snake folk artificer entering from the first door and the rest of the party, the bard, paladin, and war forged artificer entering the second door. The paladin, now an oath breaker, brought her beholder zombie from an earlier adventure with her. The druid was in earth elemental form and got the lay of the land with his tremor sense, finding there were two strange creatures in the room overlooking the lower levels, a huge storm troll, and four mages casting spells into odd amplifiers powering a giant obelisk of adamantine. The bard peeked into the observation chamber and saw the two strange creatures, one appeared to be an undead lich, the other looked like thousands of bugs trying to hide in a robe, so she ran away. The druid instantly started pummeling one of the mages and the bard used dominate monster to bring the troll onto their side. The troll attacked and killed two of the mages. The rest of the party moved into the room and started attacking the mages that were left. The two cloaked figures started casting spells and took control of the troll back as well as put the party off balance. The troll used his lightning to wound a large number of the party members and the druid knocked out part of the wall and went for the bug man. His attacks seemed to do minimal damage against the robe of bugs and he became enveloped within its gross anatomy. The other lich took this chance to hit the druid elemental with a disintegrate spell, greatly wounding him. The rest of the party killed the last of the smaller mages off and saw that as they killed them their bodies got pulled into their magic amplifiers. The bard reversed the gravity in the room, attempting to wound the enemies but only succeeded in putting the druid on the ceiling. The artificers continued blasting the liches and the troll with their guns, costing the druid his elemental shape when shot with thunder damage, knocking him back to his firbolg self. The party attempted to use magics against the liches, who used counter spell to great effect. The liches grew tired of this charade and fire balled half the rest of the group and using higher spells on the obelisk. The metal and stone shattered and the party watched as a graceful metal dragon levitated above the floor and screamed. The party was pulled to the dragon and passed out, awaking standing in a swamp of ice cold water, in the dark, surrounded by howling and white trees.
Once they gathered their bearings a duster wearing blood-soaked figure came running out of the darkness and was being chased by werewolves. The group, now featuring a dwarven brute fighter, made quick work of the werewolves with higher level spells such as moon beam, fire ball, and polymorph, making a tiny yarn golem into a hulking tyrannosaurus rex made of yarn. The night was young, the moon seemed closer than it should be as well. The group traveled on water walk to the small island about a mile away and set up a base camp, grilling their new blood covered friend, a human named Atticus Alewin. Atticus was from the area, telling the party about the nearby fishing village he currently calls home and explained a bit of the current strife in the land, and deflected questions about his blood fueled sword. While the cleric worked on summoning their lodging for the evening the party watched out for any other werewolves or other nocturnal hunters. The cleric’s summoned lodgings turned out to be a large temple dedicated to his divinity, fire. Within the structure the ceiling looked to be on fire, had a solitary door and two small windows. The party rested and alternated watches to make sure nothing truly nasty surprised them, also keeping an eye on Atticus, who made an odd cross of his swords to work as a drying rack for his swords and passing out on the stone floor. During the night the cleric scry on the troll they fought and saw he was within the castle of the lord within an iron maiden draining him just enough that he would not die. On the first watch the fighter saw a large pillar like smoke rising off about three hundred yards. As he watched the pillar formed an eye on its top and started surveying a part of the swamp, and when it saw suitable prey descended on something in the darkness, horrible thrashing could be heard in the swamp, followed by a scream and then silence. He woke up the bard and went to sleep. During the bards watch she saw a raven that blocked out the moon, at first thinking it was close by, and later realizing it was further away and the size of an elephant if not bigger. She went and woke the druid for his watch. The druid stood vigil standing outside the door of the temple, keeping it open if he needed evacuation. After the first hour nothing was happening, then he heard a splash near the small island. He watched as something swam quickly to the shore and scampered across its surface, there was a light growl and another splash in the water and it swam away. the druid thought about what he just saw and went back inside realizing the thing he saw looked like human torso with a longer than normal spine, no lower body, and a perfectly smooth face. He locked the door and waited till morning to wake anyone else. They found out that the “spinetail” are dangerous predators of the waters and should be avoided. Atticus was the last to wake and realized in the light that a few of his new companions were not of this world, he was confused by the warforged, dragonborn, and two firbolg traveling with the part elves, halfling, and dwarf. The party grilled Atticus for information about his homeland, the political structure of the land, and who lived in the area. He gave them the best info he could, being a “simple” monster hunter and told them the more exotic races did not exist in this land. The group packed up and rode the carpet to the town of Kaer, finding a simple fishing village living on the edge of the swamp. Atticus got them inside after the group donned costumes and hid their monstrous visages and took them to the small tavern called the Empty Coffer. Other than the bartender and the group there was a bard slowly making his way into the common room. Fengast de Bard was very inquisitive and interrogated the party on their ambitions after giving them plot details and information regarding the metal and stone dragon in the center of the lord’s castle. Fengast de Bard also confused the party with his black and white checkerboard motley garb and monogramed handkerchief he handed out the party, he seemed to have an endless supply. The party knew they would have to go find the dragon to go home and that the enemy had it. Fengast de Bard was a part of a group called the Whispers, an organization seeking to save those the lord of the castle was seeking to destroy, corrupt, or control and attempted to sway the party to dispose of the lord. The party decided to take over a small abandoned home in the town and asked why it was abandoned. The barkeep Bresha told them the family left when one of the girls got bit by a spinetail and tried to eat her sister. The party set up camp in the abandoned building and kept seeing a flash of a small child running around in the building. The bard played tag with the child and tagged her. Later the child pulled on the bard’s leg and the bard saw nothing next to her and heard hissing and saw in the dust the phrase “come find us”. The cleric and witch worked on consecrating the home and the moment the Hallow spell completed the wall of the city blew off and a gargantuan monster entered but failed to get any closer to the house. The party threw a round of magics and pain into the creature and it fled further into the city, killing civilians and turning them into monstrous undead. The cleric and his kobold charged him to use divine magic to wound him and the beast bit down on the cleric, leaving the kobold alone on the magic broom, face to face with the beast. The druid decided to use tsunami and ended up destroying almost the entire town, drowning dozens, and destroying whatever protection the survivors had by tearing down the walls with the torrent of water. In shock, the rest of the party attacked the Hemless beast and eventually felled it, unleashing a swarm of dead villagers turned wights. The party destroyed them quickly. The bard Fengast de Bard gave them a map to quickly get to Strahd’s castle and sent them on their way. The party flew over the forests following the map while the druid, now deemed a murderer swam bellow them across the land. They found a camp site and build another small temple for the god of fire and the druid again was left outside, the rest of the party not trusting his choices in the previous battle. While on watch he saw a few of the enormous heads rolling across the distance towards the now ruined Kaer. He also felt a presence near him and turned to see a large sized skeleton sitting next to him staring off in the distance. He gave the skeleton some ale, which it drank, then it disappeared. In the morning the party made the final approach to the castle of Strahd. As they gazed at it they made a choice. The witch had the ability to change the terrain via magic as well as alter the sounds generated within its walls. He first sent his familiar to scout and found the throne room and the giant metallic dragon they were searching for, Strahd, his tinker goblin, and one of the Liches. While the familiar watched the witch set the magic into motion. The walls and floors and stone of the castle turned to glass and as the tinker goblin working on the golem dragon hit it with its hammer it went “smack, smack, quack” and confusion was had. The goblin turned to its master and shouted “Quack!” and in his rage the master struck him down with unholy fire and the flames roared with many quacks. The party chose that time to strike, the dwarf fighter jumped off the magic carpet, landing twenty feet down onto the glass floor with an enormous quacking sound, one of his feet breaking through, and charged Strahd. The druid shape shifted into a huge ape and broke through the glass and dropped behind Strahd, grabbing him with his large mitts. Strahd did not like this situation and ghost stepped to stand on top of the ape and snapped his fingers, casting meteor swarm, destroying his throne room of glass with loud quacking sounds and sending both the fighter and druid falling through many floors of glass until they reached the bottom of the quack zone and landing in glass strewn water, and a moment later the dragon golem and the lich landed next to them. The rest of the party tried to stay safe on their magic carpet and watched as Strahd went below and started whaling on the fighter and druid with magic. The lich informed them to throw any magic they had into the dragon golem as more guards started falling through glass floors and advancing on the party. The group were able to gather relatively close to one another as Strahd flew up higher to hit them with another meteor swarm. As the spell took shape and destruction eminent the golem absorbed the entire spell and a pillar of light hit the room. As the party finished blinking they found themselves standing on hard packed red desert under the light of a red sun with a dragon golem and a lich.
They picked themselves back up and attempted to recharge the dragon by throwing more magic into it, noticing with each spell bits of the land around them would break and the dragon was not retaining any of the magic. The talked with the Lich that came through with them and found out lore about the dragon as well as the plots of the liches allies. As they talked they saw a glimmer of light in the distance and watched as a large shell of beetle with wheels being pulled by a large multi tusked elephant like creature came over the ridge. It was flanked by bird riding figures and they could see two brighter cloaked figures on top of the beetle. The party shouted out to them and were hit with magic from the mages when the party refused to comply with the mages claim of ownership. One of the bards force caged the mages while the party dealt with the warriors, the druid turning into a tyrannosaurus rex and eating one after tail whipping and biting another. The other warrior was killed by the witch with the spell finger of death and now the party has a zombie following them. The party freed the slaves within the beetle and found out more about the captors as well as the world itself. Metal was scarce, magic was terrible, and dragon kings ruled the world with iron fists. These creatures the party saved were half human dwarves bred with magic to be perfect workers and their life had been toil. They knew if they were taken to the city that they would have been force to fight each other to the death in the fighting arena for the enjoyment of the rich. The group investigated the innards of this mobile hollowed out shell and found antiquate storage for water, about a weeks’ worth, and “property” as well as living quarters for the warriors and the two mages. The party got themselves ready, knowing the force cage was going to expire and as the mages dropped rained on their parade, turning one to stone and killing the other. The druid attempted to plant seeds into the bodies of the slain and grow them with magic, finding he was only draining the moisture from the bodies with his spells. the party experimented with their spells a bit to find out that they were draining life force away from their surroundings with each spell. They decided to slow up on the magic a bit, get the dragon onto the back of the beetle and take the free people to their promised land, an oasis in the middle of nowhere. The elder of these free people was incredibly old and had been to the promised land before so he was able to guide the crew there, they just needed protection. They started their journey and argued about cannibalism and the morality of eating intelligent creatures, the lich quietly laughing at them the whole time. After a long day of travel a bad made a magical mansion for the party to stay in as well as their traveling companions. The beasts of burdens where not able to fit inside so the lich hid them with mundane means. As the druid was exploring outside he drew the attention of a creature that called itself Rathar of the ways, an odd fey creature that stood fifteen feet tall and had long spindly wooden limbs and its face was covered in a strange leaf with a crude smile drawn on it with red pigment. The group was hesitant to trust it but told it that they would allow it to travel with them till he could find his way again. The party rested and gave their new allies as much water and food, and in the morning packed up their gear, fed the animals, and started on their journey again. The creature Rathar sat with his feet dangling off the back of their beetle shell and watched the road disappear behind them. After a few hours of travel Rathar informed the party they were being followed by two scaled ones, which with his description they figured they were a form of Tyrannosaurus rexes. The party had a choice, fight them, run, or try to distract them. Of course, they chose to attack them, most of the party using non-magical attacks to deal with the dinosaurs, the fighter charged them and was almost eaten, the dinosaurs tried to rip him in half but his armor was to strong. After a few well-placed shots with the thunder cannon and called lightning the beasts were slain. During the combat the cleric, now back from the ethereal plane, saw two figures observing the group from a cliff face, moments later their fey companion, Rathar of the ways, caused them both to explode from the inside. The party looted parts from the tyrannosaurus rexes and made their way to their next rest stop. They tied off the sleeping elephant like monster to the stone wizard they were carrying around and the cleric created a temple inside the magic mansion. They rested peacefully and Rathar kept watch. the party asked Rathar about his disappearance and the exploding people and he informed them that he took care of the elves and their forces that were lying in wait. The druid wanted to learn how to blow people up and was unwilling to become a test subject. The next day they made it to the promised land and found the great pool of water protected by terrible poisons and a nature spirit. The nature spirit advised them against drinking the water, full of arsenic and worse, whereas the other smaller pools were being filtered by small plants. The party grilled him for information and was told they could get a new crystal at the old watch tower/light house. They wanted to just stay and work on the one they had and try to fix it but it would have taken five or more weeks and not worked. They eventually took the hint and went to the lighthouse, finding a skeleton on top with a large gem. The witch sent his sprite to investigate and the lich grabbed it and drained it of some of its energy. The witch dismissed its sprite and summoned it on the carpet. The party argued on the best way to engage the creature or just steal the gem and the dwarf brute fighter grew sick of just sitting around and jumped off the flying carpet and landed next to the lich, dealing around ninety points of damage to the lich with two sets of attacks with the use of an action surge. The rest of the party floundered while trying to figure out how to act and after the lich got trapped in a force cage by a bard. While in there the lich decided to immolate himself to return to his phylactery, which the paladin was carrying after stealing the giant crystal. At this point his two minions attacked the party, a pair of marilith. Most of the party used a prepared word of recall to teleport instantly back to base camp while the paladin, artificer, fighter, and bard were left to deal with the demons. The fighter and artificer made quick work of them and the cleric watched via a scry spell. The party regathered and discussed what to do with the gem. After a bit of arguing the lich reminded them of the other lich in the gem and they let him drain away it’s magical essence. He also mentioned he could hear the dragon golem scratching to be let out and the gem was vibrating. They also grilled Rathar about his intentions and why he wanted to return to their world. The party decided to wait till they had rested to let the gem be joined with the dragon.
In the morning they placed the gem within its confines and watched as large arcane runes cut themselves into the stones below their feet and they all grew lighter and followed the light trails out of Dark Sun’s Athas and found themselves shooting through space and eventually touched down on what seemed to be home, except members of their group were missing, their lich was gone, the dragon missing, and Rathar of the Ways was reduced to ash and they saw his leaf face floating slowly to the ground. The druid touched him and the ash all blew away. The sky was blood red and black lightning cracked the sky. The group looked around for other clues and saw a very large ugly giant rutting around in a broken building off in the distance. They tried to avoid him but strange ember wolves saw them and howled before attacking. They threw a smoke screen up around the giant and attempted to deal with his dogs, finding them easy to destroy and oddly resistant to many of their normal tactics. After realizing the division of their efforts was keeping them from making any headway they ganged up on the giant, their druid fell victim to it’s horrible gaze and became deformed. As the fighter took down the giant they heard slow clapping and laughter across the ash filled valley and saw a somewhat familiar face, that of the fey creature known as Lon Lethen. He offered them a way out, gather enough teeth for him from the other two living titans and he would find them a way back to their own time. They grilled him for history facts and found that after one of the gods, Goloh, died the whole world went to shit. Nations went to war, bodies piled up, and the end of time beasts were unfettered from their secret bindings. Now only a few living creatures remained, Lon Lethen, Cull, another strange beast, and the Hekatonchires. As the party went towards the odd thunder like sounds they stumbled across a blue haired badly burned man mumbling to himself, repeating “couldn’t save them” or “it wasn’t enough”. One of the bards played calming music on her lute and he snapped out of his stupor. He claimed his name was Gerald, confirmed a few of their suspicions, and joined them on their journey to fight the other titans. When they arrived at the battle they saw a giant multi-armed stone man fighting what seemed to be a pile of eyes, mouths, and pale porcelain flesh. The cleric called to her god for help and the flame war god sent down an angel to help them. The battle commenced and chaos was found. The large stone creature attacked everything around itself with multiple slams, the flesh monster took huge bites out of the angel, the angel could barely keep itself in the fight. The flesh beast teleported away from the fighter and was able to sneak itself in to the force cube the party kept using as a bunker and was able to kill the kobold helper of the cleric and drastically wound the bard and cleric. The fighter was able to eventually wipe out the stone creature after a few of its teeth were ripped out by Lon Lethen and Gerald removed a few of its arms with disintegration. The party trapped the flesh monster within the force cube and Lon Lethen killed the beast inside. He gathered the party, brought back the kobold, and lead them with his new-found teeth to a giant crater. He climbed down and broke teeth around a massive skeleton and enacted a ritual that brought it back to life, a massive humanoid looking creature with a big bushy beard. Lon Lethen called out to the creature and told him that his servants have brought him back and must be returned to their own time. The party saw a flash and were back in the faulty portal standing within the viewing chamber with a duck. Their lives for the most part have returned to normal.
The party was given an invitation to the grand tournament honoring the defeat of Cull and the end of the War of Rising Kings. Robank, their boss, was the guest of honor for the event, having used a note of music so pure it drove off the armies of Cull. They were being asked to compete with other heroes in a giant maze similar to the sporting maze but changed up enough to be fair to foreign competitors. This event is to show solidarity with the neighboring kingdoms as groups of heroes from almost every nation have been invited to participate. The party has had time to heal their wounds and shop as well as relay all the information they have gleaned in their travels to their boss at Tower Artifacts. Forty adventuring groups have entered in the event, most they have never seen before, and a few familiar faces. Everything seems to be going well, they had each group get ready in separate summoning circles in the Arena of Bitka with crowds filling the stands. Vendors hawk their wares and can be heard over the crowds. There are giant ice screens with scrying spells places on them to show the events transpiring within the maze and its many environments. As the event starts they saw Robank sitting upon the champions dais made for him by the founders of this event. The spell grabs them and they were sent elsewhere. The last thing they saw were cloaked figures descend on Robank with knives drawn. The party opened their eyes in a dank terrible sewer and heard a voice in their heads say: “Great sacrifices, welcome to the hero Culling. This world has so much light in it that darkness has taken matters into its own hands. Before you are various challenges to test your mettle and thin your numbers. Can you make it to my throne and free your nation from chains? Make this challenge worth it. Bring me the primal keys to face the next threat. You should not trust the heroes you have been placed in here with, many are my pawns, having killed them long ago and living among you. Once allies might be villains in disguise. Go forth heroes and face death.” They gathered themselves and started preparing for the worst, already finding themselves standing in a dank sewer. The sewer water started rippling towards the party after the druid skipped a light stone across the water so they wisely left the room using the large metal doorway behind them. Tentacles slapped futilely against the door, shaking the wall. The cleric had time to cast a divination spell to commune with his god and asked questions on which way to go, is Robank still alive, are any of my current associates traitors? He got the answers he needed and a bit more finding Robank was still alive, the way they went was a quicker path, and their group did not contain and traitors. They went east, traveling past another iron door and heard fighting from further down the hallway. There was a fire giant fighting another group of heroes and winning. The giant had just killed the other parties’ fighter and while the party deliberated on interfering murdered a cleric. The party jumped in to save the rogue and the sorcerer, killing the giant rather quickly thanks to the magic sword the warforged had claimed from the skeletons last session. As the two warriors slumped in death the characters heard this boom in to their minds: “it seems one of you has fallen, such a pity, I had hoped to torture that one myself. You see the threats here are not like your simple sporting maze, each thing here is real and willing to destroy you, body and soul.” The party interrogated the rogue and sorcerer and found out they started in a room on fire and found a room full of eight comfy beds, a cozy breakfast nook and kitchen with a fireplace. They were attacked by the giants and fled to this hallway before the giants caught up with them. They were sad for the loss of their friends and put them in a portable hole not noticing they were a little lighter. The party with their two additions traveled further down the corridors and opened the next door they found, a room again full of comfy furniture. The cleric threw a chunk of bacon on a bed and the mattress folded on itself, eating it instantly. All the furniture grew eyes and teeth and started to charge the door, even the fireplace. The party slammed the door shut, cutting off a few pseudopods in the process. They found their way further down the tunnel and the next door was in a dead end. The spot was pleasant, like subtle calming melodies were on the horizon. They grew skeptical of this obvious trap and debated about opening the door. The cleric cast a divination clairvoyance spell to look beyond the door and saw tranquil waves on the peaceful shore of an ocean, sea breezes moving the palm trees, a large city sized turtle swam lazily among a chain of small islands in the distance. Cliffs ran westward with a switch back path leading to another door in the cliff and some sort of activity on top of the cliff. Far above the turtle floating islands chained together drifted ever so slowly in the sea breeze. Some of the party believed that this was an elaborate illusion meant to trap or maim them. The bards grew restless and tried to force their way past the druid who happened to be blocking the door. The necromancer contacted an otherworldly being and got odd responses. He learned that this was not an illusion, was not near Rhadamanthus, and something they needed was within the temple on the turtle. He is not sure what he contacted but it seemed more than happy to help. They soldiered on into the unknown and found out, yes, they somehow built a saltwater ocean inside the maze, sand and all. The druid started to converse with a friendly toucan and found people had brought everything here around three months ago. The party heard the death message in their heads again as a falling body hit one of the small islands from far above and crabs the size of elephants came out of the water to eat it. The party took small boats far around the small islands to skip past the crabs and found a latticework of pirate-built landing on the turtle for docking purposes. The druid asked questions to the turtle and got vague answers back. They investigated the temple and the sorcerer and rogue extras stayed back by the necromancer’s skeletons to be out of the way and the dead were unable to cross into sacred ground. The paladin started to demand the two extras join the rest of the group while the rest of the party found the altar with a large chest on top of a large oddly shaped rug. The chest had a large key made of non-ice solid water. The physics of it baffled them until they remembered magic. At this point a gasp went out as an arrow hit the rogue in the neck and dark poison pulsed into his now convulsing body. The necromancer commanded the rug to lift off and his friends all jumped on. They flew off as his skeletons were decimated by a group of undead warriors. The party booked it away from the temple and made for the cliff door. They noticed a clutch of harpies feeding near the door and bashed them with a fireball and picking off any stragglers while they got closer. The door was then unguarded but a loud yelling could be heard from a higher cliff point. They all jumped inside the cliff door and pulled it closed, relaxing for a moment. At this point a strange pale woman floated into the hallway with the and when she noticed the swarm of living creatures, teleported within their midst and wailed a baleful scream, almost killing both bards and the sorcerer in one fell swoop. The rest of the group beat the tar out of her and the banshee was destroyed. As the party examined the bards and sorcerer they found they were still alive but needed healing. Two survivors of another group entered the hall and tentatively joined the group. They had lost their companions to the sewer room and the snow room. As they discussed their past a small shape, a tiny blue man with a broom was confronted by the party. They interrogated him and found the dungeon rooms change places and rotate, he was sweeping up after parties, and lost his dustpan in the jungle room. They looked back to the cliff room and saw it was now the sewers again. They journeyed to the gremlins passage and found a room full of gold, after investigation they found a dragon guarding its treasure. The warforged kicked the dragonborn sorcerer into the room when he tried to cast a spell at the dragon and closed the door. The dragon asked him a few questions and soon the dragonborn paladin and the half elf bard came in too. The dragon told them he was at an impasse, he wanted to leave this horrible place but was stuck until he could find a way to carry out all of his gold. The party spit balled ideas with him and other members of the group decided to explore door number two and found the room full of hydra. They quit both rooms and traveled further down the hallway. They found another chamber with a strange large many limbed racoon sloth creature in a room covered in stone and emeralds. They watched the creature and it mimicked their hello waves and went back to grooming itself. The bard threw a rock in the room and it became reversed in gravity, then the party saw the corpse ball on the ceiling along with the thrown rock. The creature told them it was hungry, went back to eating an arm, and snarled at them. The party pressed it for information and tried to convince it to let them return it home. They pressed it enough that it grew suspicious and reversed the gravity in the door way causing the wizard and sorcerer to fly halfway into the room and take damage from the emerald shards on the floor. They knocked it out with a hypnotic pattern and the barbarian almost cut it in half with his hasted attacks. As they fought with it they heard a scream and found the elf sorcereress they had saved earlier scream as a gibbering mouther tackled her and killed her. The group was blasted with a beam of gravity reversal but only the sorcerer was affected by it and took 62 damage. The party switched focus and fought both monsters, finding the earth key inside the gravity lemur. The other was destroyed by the handiwork of the druid in earth elemental form and the barbarian with his cursed sword. The party rested and asked their gods and patrons questions about the dungeon and found that another team was walking around with the air key, the fire key was in the room on fire, and there was only one copy of each key. After resting they asked the gremlin more questions about the dungeon and he was evasive but honest with the information given. They heard the telltale grinding sound and found two doors out in the hallway with another door down the length of the hall. The right door looked to be a jungle and the gremlin grabbed his dustpan of wonder. The party attempted to figure out its magic over the course of ten-minute learning that whatever the dustpan gathered would not fall out of the dustpan, like it went elsewhere. They closed the jungle door and opened the next door finding a mountain range with four golem like creatures carrying a palanquin with a golden skeleton on top. Greed got the better of them and the druid attacked. He trapped the skeleton in a sphere of water and moved it away from its guardians. The golems attacked the party, moving to separate them from their charge. The paladin and the druid were subject to a fire explosion trigged by the paladin reading runes on the back of the amulet she removed from the skeleton. The druid turned into a water elemental and started attacking the golems. The party used spells to knock the golems off their feet and proceeded to bludgeon them do death, sending one off the cliff side. The party gathered themselves and watched as the bones of the skeleton spelled out the phrase “forest realm water ways” and started to wander up the mountain to see what was on top of it. They found the air temple with floating island connected by rope bridges and another adventuring party across the gap, tending to their wounds. The sorcerer and the witch decided to go talk with them with the druid in water elemental form and were attacked. After the party stopped trying to throw people over the edge they made quick work of the assassins but were unable to find the air key. The sorcerer had dominated one of the assassins and it confirmed that they did not have it on their persons. While they were investigating they heard a horrible screeching noise and saw a huge sized harpy tear out the first bridge. The party regrouped on different islands and assaulted her, teleporting allies from place to place for more advantageous positions. They defeated the harpy queen and decided to rest before carrying on their adventure. While resting the great voice filled their minds and informed them that the hallways were gone, and resting was a fool’s option. The sound of breaking gears and grinding stone filled the air. The party got on their carpet and flew down to the last door they saw, back down by the beach. The door had been ripped from the frame and tossed into the sand. The passage lead into a cavern where the party continued their tradition of slapping every surface of the dungeon with bacon with light cast on it. After a few hundred feet of smack, smack, smack they heard smack, smack, thwack, and realized something was there. They were attacked by two manta ray cave monsters. The party spent many of their higher-level spells on the beasts and murdered them quickly. The witch had slowed them, the druid hit them with ongoing moon magics, the sorcerer hit them with small meteors, and the bad covered them in revealing magics. The party continued onward into a familiar chamber, the earth room and noticed one door with flames shooting from its depths, another leading into the dragon room and the last door across from the entrance had elements of a jungle poking through. A loud voice could be heard in the direction of the jungle shouting about its gold. The party investigated the dragon’s room to find it empty, the fire room had been looted, and the jungle was in the process of burning. The party split up, with the barbarian, necromancer, mite companion, and the paladin staying within the necromancer’s tiny hut he made out of magic while the rest of the party made their way into the jungle. Once into the jungle the rest of the group noticed the dragon they had met before flying around any laying waste to the center of the jungle. The witch wandered around the left flank looking for another door, finding a swamp. The rest of the group decided, having a dragonborn with them, they should try to talk with the raging red dragon. They messaged him with the bard’s spell and attempted to negotiate. After a few tense moments the dragon realized the party was wearing the same Tower Artifacts guild bags. The bard and cleric retreated with dimension door while the druid attempted to make himself immune to fire. The dragon attacked with tooth and claw both the sorcerer and the druid and fearing for their lives they also dimension door teleported after the bard and cleric. They all arrived near the witch in the swamp and found another door leading into a dark swamp and hid within. They followed a pathway of blue fey ghost lights and the witch noticed the glint of numerous jungle trolls sitting in the water watching the party and decided not to tell the party. They followed the lights to a large chicken legged hut surrounded by a fence of bones. The gate was open and the witch and dragonborn entered. The druid noticed the trolls eventually and had a panic attack, having had bad experiences in the past. The witch entered the hut and made a deal with the matron of the swamp, promising that she would serve the matron for a week’s time and help establish a coven near Rhadamanthus. She informed the adventurers of great wards she set up to keep the dragon out and her new troll minions would leave them alone. The group gained the matrons favor and were granted the ability to teleport past the dragon to the top of the nearby temple. While they were dealing with all that the necromancer, barbarian, paladin, and mite traveled past the horrible hydra chamber and found themselves outside a great temple on the north edge of the chamber. They could see a red dragon pacing and digging at the swamp door. They made another magic hut and moments later the other group appeared nearby. As a group they traveled up the temple stairs they noticed eyes carved into the stone work, and the druid and the necromancer remembered things about an eye monster. Within the temple they found large sized husks of molted spider carapaces stuck within the webs and dust. They beseeched nature for advice and found that there was a large undead power polluting the ruin, there were beasts still roaming the tunnels, and there was a much lower chamber that seems to lead to the next area. They made their way to stairs the druid had learned about and found a huge sized spider with a human face guarding them. They made quick work of the beast with larger area of effect spells and cleared the way. They journeyed down the stairs and found a hallway leading forward and another leading to the right and continued strait, finding a four-way tunnel, they chose to take the left passage and found a door locked and trapped with poison gas and within the room a minotaur skeleton soaked in blood and viscera from the mutilated bodies on the floor. The cleric said nope and used dispel evil and good on it and sent him to another realm. the group searched the bodies for loot and found the corpses had been sent into this room nude and stripped off all belongings. The next door northward lead to a strange fingerprinted hallway with odd marks in the dust, finding another door slightly ajar. Looking inside the party found a sea of severed hands writhing on the ground and the witch’s familiar got disintegrated by something else in the chamber, some strange flash of white. The party threw a wave of water and tried to turn the undead with divine power, finding the hands immune to divine might, the water destroyed them. The druid threw a wall of fire into the room, leaving an entire corner walled off and illuminated. The Death Tyrant dove through the wall, taking some damage and started shooting the party with rays of magical energy. After alliances were tampered with, healers thrown through walls of fire, barbarians hasted and climbing magical hands, death and disintegrations dodges, and fears faced, the party drove this monster into the dust, which the dragonborn started eating? He had his reasons. The party gathered together and gave a short rest a try and after notices a door that was hidden by the fire wall and another unassuming door on the north side of the chamber. They detected no magic, and the druid in elemental form went in and found a chest covered in runes but giving off no magical auras. He returned to the party with it and they popped it open finding a smaller parcel radiating epic levels of magic. The party had discovered a Deck of Many Things and within moments chaos reigned. They each decided to pull one card from the deck. The paladin reversed her alignment, the barbarian has a penalty on all his saving throws, the witch has an answer to one of their questions, the cleric gained a kobold knight, the sorcerer gained the ability to change the way something in the past of present happened, the druid lost all of his magic items, the bard lost a few points of her intelligence, the wizard’s soul was imprisoned elsewhere and his body became a vessel for the slain beholder monster. The druid in a panic drew two more cards gaining both the enmity of both a devil and an old friend. The witch attempted to help by drawing another card and should have been imprisoned but his contract with the witch protected him. The bard drew another card and will level up if she solo’s the next encounter. The sorcerer helped out the druid by cashing in his fix one problem card. The party decided to rest up a bit and after a few hours decided to pull the rest of the deck between them. The bard pulled the avatar of death card and was able to defeat it, also gaining the boon of the other card she pulled, becoming stronger. The barbarian also became stronger and the bard gained a monster filled keep. The cleric’s kobold friend ended up pulling the card of Comets, gaining two wishes. At this time the wizard’s subtle transformation went unnoticed by the party as well as the paladin taking the dark iron sword from the warforged barbarian. The party cast a spell to show them the quickest way out of the dungeon and traveled into the tube like tunnels the beholder was using to travel between the dungeon rooms without using the doors. They came to a chamber with a sunlit exit as well as stairs leading back up into the dungeon. After moments of discussion the witch sent his yarn golem up the stairs and saw a flaming skull looking around. Not wanting to get destroyed the yarn golem decided to retreat back down the way it came. They exited the ruins and found themselves in a vast city, to the right of them a large city wall and past that a painted forest scene on the outer wall. To their left a dense city full of large buildings, some screaming, and a few larger fires. They went into the dense city and found an armored “person” stabbing corpses with his sword and cutting down anything that tried to flee. The party unleashed a barrage of attacks against him and he animated the corpses as ghouls. The druid entangled the horde and tuned into an air elemental. Most of the party hung back and was enveloped with a hell ball the knight threw at them, leading to massive damage and a few near casualties. After a few more exchanges of blows the paladin killed the knight with her horrible sword and the knight was sucked into its blade. The party took a rest within the taverns nearby and the cleric noticed a false floor in the bar, and within there was a kobold merchant and his three iron golems, waiting out the storm. The party weighed their options and decided to do business with him, buying some new and needed gear. The druid went out to the magic wine fountain and drank until he passed out, the witch watching him to make sure nothing to bad happened. The necromancer set up his magnificent mansion with ghost looking unseen servants, bone décor, and unbeknownst to the party secret tunnels between the rooms. The party was met outside by two new faces, one a heavily shrouded mystic, the other a snake person artificer with a thunder cannon and a mechanical eagle friend. They joined the party in the morning. During the night the kobold felt and saw eyes watching him in the walls, and in the morning he and the fire cleric found the tunnels, leading the cleric to assume the necromancer has a thing for the “young ones” and put the group on alert, noticing after passing his note to the bard the eyes on the wall reading the note with her. They all gathered their things and decided to pass on breakfast when strange oversized bacon and mystery meats were being set on the table by the blood drenched ghostly servants. Outside they met the new group and headed out with them finding their path leading into a hallway. They were sure the voice had told them hallways were gone and were confused. After debating the witch’s familiar went into the tunnel and found an ornate room with copper mirrors in the corners and stairs leading up. The group experimented by throwing things onto the mirrors and found they were electrified. While the party again discussed the path, the necromancer claimed not to have time for this and teleported with his four skeletons elsewhere, and the mystic teleported to the top of the stairs triggering the traps the artificer detected. The stairs tuned into a ramp and the first five feet fell into quickly rising oil. The group all made their way both magically and jumping up the ramp an escaped the inferno of the oil hitting the metal plates and igniting the pit. To their right there was a long hallway leading to a further closed door and a hall that came to an end in front of them after two chambers. The party went to the closer end point, again sending the familiar to scout ahead and after burning webbing was tackled by a large spider like creature. The party set to attacking it dealing a heaping pile of damage upon it. They found there were tethers attaching it to something up above and noted with every hit strange pods above it would be damaged in its place. They cut the tethers and watched as the beast, a machine placed within a spider husk, fell quiet, triggering the chest in the next room to burst open and spray both air and oil into the chamber onto the familiar with its hands aflame. The explosion sent a few of the party back out into the hall, the mystic plugged to the oil stream and eventually a large burst sound shook the tunnel. They found the rest of the chest disappointingly empty. They went to the other hall and found a larger chamber with odd large non-supporting pillars, two switches, and a mechanically sealed door on the end. The sprite familiar went and tugged on the right-side switch while the party was investigating and the door to the chamber clanged shut and the pillars fell away to reveal four writhing black oozes. The barbarian ran up and made the number now six oozes as he chipped away at them with his sword. The druid cut the room in half with a wall of fire, catching a few on the way and the witch slowed them with magic. The mystic summoned a fire elemental and as a group they dispatched the rest quickly. They flipped the other switch and the door opened, leading them into a chamber with a faint damp smell and an even larger suspicious pillar. The other door on the far side was jammed shut with barnacles and slick with algae. Once the entire group entered the room the doors predictably slammed shut and the party was up to their knees in odd water with two aboleth splashing about with water coming down from pipes in the ceiling. The druid was in water elemental shape and was attempting to bludgeon them, the bard eye bit on of them causing it to swim away, the witch used cloud kill and the cleric used control water to remove the water from the center of the room. The barbarian broke a chunk of the door open with his magic sword, the aboleth took damage from the witch’s large spell cloud and the both tried to dominate the mind of the druid and failed, so they lashed out with all their tentacles and afflicted him with bad magics. The party sent fireball after fireball at the aboleth quickly gaining the upper hand. The party dressed their wounds and pressed forward and found a room with a wall of doors, two boneless dead gargoyles, two signs with odd messages, and a trail of bloody footprints leading into frosty chamber past the open door. The signs spoke of a riddle, only one gargoyle spoke the truth, the other lied, but it looked like the last person through the chamber just murdered them both and carried on. Unsure of the path, the cleric cast a divination to ask her god for help, finding the snow door the most likely source of an exit. Once within the snow room the druid cast more divination spells to see if there were dangerous demons or otherworldly creatures in the room and found a faraway source of undead energy and asked if there were any dangers with terrain and found none. Having exhausted many of their abilities the party trudged off in the most likely direction, following the blood footprints, and noticed an ambush of strange fire and ice bugs. The bard used a spell to make one amused by shiny colors and shapes but the druid decided to charge it, after turning into mammoth, knock it down and step on it. During the attack he took fire damage and lost his mammoth form as well as breaking the bards spell. The rest of the party used spells to try to help the druid, who turned into a giant crab, attacked the monster, took fire damage, and lost his form again. The witch, feeling bad for the druid turned him back into a giant crab for an hour. After tense moments of almost losing their druid to the bugs the party defeated them, questioning the logic of charging hungry monsters. The party almost made it to the door when a shadowy shape of a beholder zombie shambled out of the snow. The paladin, having become evil, used command undead and now has a henchman temporarily. The party peered through the door and saw a fertile land of green forest, meadows, a floating tower with rock chucking giants, huge tracks of torn up soil, and a rock studded broken tower made of wood. They decided to tie up a loose end while resting before leaving the snow room and used their first wish spell, properly and precariously prepared to summon the bags the necromancer owned to the party, securing both of the keys he had possessed. The drawback being the bags had a vampire spawn within as well as piles of dead bodies. They poured the contents into a magic circle to keep all the possible undead inside and have now come to the realization their old necromancer pal might be a bit mad, having all of his items and gold stolen. The party took a look into the next room again and watched as a giant purple worm enveloped the floating tower and the giants in one big attack. The group decided to take their carpet across the chamber to the wooden tower that was un eaten by the purple worm and found it full of survivors of other groups. Of the twenty or so people only two volunteered to help the party in their fight and also had the last key they needed. They rested in the tower and after took their carpet towards the waterfall they had been informed of by the tiefling warlock and the human druid. They past minor threats from on high, ignoring the tree folk in a secluded glade as well as a group of kappa eating a horse in a river. Eventually they found the fifty-foot-high waterfall over a large lake and within a chamber impatiently waited Charles, their old friend turned foe and a dais which looked like the keys were to be placed on. The group fought him viciously and noticed on his body large welts that turned out to be more eyes. With the final blow a smile broke upon his face and his form shook, he thanked the party for releasing him, his head detached and swelled impossibly large and detached, becoming the beholder skeleton they had faced before and now wearing the helm of teleportation, and the body remained standing and throwing spells. the group used every tool at their disposal to kill theses beasts, from simple vine whips to wishing an incendiary cloud into being around their foes. The beholder and the now headless lich both used every round to blast the party with as much power as they could muster. The beholder used every ray in its arsenal, blowing more holes in the ground than the party and the lich cocooned himself in the globe of invulnerability making it so he could only be hurt by ninth level spells. The artificers both shot volley after volley of scatter shot into the lich and the beholder, one running around inside the chamber, the other riding upon its companion metal bird and ducking in and out of the cave to shoot every round. The cleric laid down heavy channel divinities and the kobold minion threw a storm of magic missiles after its wish and then hid outside he caves on the magic carpet covering its ears so just in case the cleric became possessed or charmed he would not hear any of the commands from its master. The newcomers both held their own against them as well. The paladin and her dark sword put every smite she had into the lich eventually killing him and pulling it into the sword. And her minion beholder she had charmed eventually got to send its disintegrate into the big skeletal beholder, ending its reign of terror. As soon as they killed them the party tossed their keys on the dais ending the tournament and returning to the Bitka Arena finding the city just a tiny bit on fire, their boss still alive but wounded.
The party traveled to Nurid, a town in which other adventurers had visited a week and half ago, fighting off both an infestation of fey and their witch overlord as well as an attack by the Tiavar assassins. The town has since seen ghost like entities rising from the ground and heading off to the old abandoned keep. The town was not troubled by this, just concerned that it might lead to bad tourism. The party spoke with the half orc bartender and the mayor to get more information about the phenomenon leading them to investigate the graveyard south west of town. They found out the whole area had been consecrated by clerics and logically there should be no undead restless spirits causing problems. About this time the party noticed a goblin child (Geb) living in the chapel attached to the graveyard. While they gave him rations and attention the necromancer/wizard took it upon himself to make four skeletal helpers and tossed clothing on them to hide their skeletal frames. The party was debating on adopting the goblin Ged, but realized that sunlight was fading. They gathered their horses, both physical and spectral and went up into the forest to inspect the woodsman’s house as well as the keep. They had the stablemaster with them to watch over the horses and give them background information. They found the hut of the old woodsman overgrown with plants and empty. They found piles of iron nails outside the building as well. Gleaning only terrifying information about the past of the ex-homeowner they moved on the keep. They found it mostly unguarded except for a helm wearing giant spider that was very friendly and told them about the wolves in the kitchen. They investigated further into the keep finding signs of other people within the keep and found a fish man in his tub of water. He was there to lend his oracular powers to the old witch and eat the magic shrimp that appeared every so often. The party heard noise and found a tiny monkey man in fine leather armor and hat rummaging through the master bedroom. They cornered him and he gave them bogus treasure and lied about his reasons for being there. After convincing them of his intentions he jumped onto his hawk and flew off into the night. In the distance a loud gong like sound pierced the now set night, and ghosts could be seen in the distance. The cleric made a circle of protection around a gem that coalesced out of the blood stains to keep away the spirits when they arrived. The gem of blood spun and the ghosts gathered confused and angry of not being able to touch the gem. They saw the ghost of the lady of the keep wielding her great sword. The barbarian in the group grew tired of the waiting and struck the gem with his new wounding axe dealing some necrotic damage as well as causing the gem to explode into a spray of blood, covering the ghosts, which all started laughing and disappeared. In the silence that grew an iron great sword fell from nothing and the wizard gave it to one of his skeletal servants. The party investigated the rest of the keep and headed into the basement, finding a fissure leading into the broken dungeon. They followed the path and found the dead witch and her dead familiar. The quasit familiar was dead and desiccated so the rogue took it along. Leaving the keep most of the characters decided to stay behind while three other characters ran back to town to find it full of giant crystals, strange mages, deformed giants, and crystal worms. The party attempted to assassinate one of the mages and were able to drive him off. The giants used their baleful eye attacks and were able to injure the party and scare them off from approaching. Shatter was used to great effect hurting both the giant crystals and the monsters. The bard used crown of madness to control one of the giants and the other seemed fixated on attacking the necromancer and his skeletal swarm. The skeleton wielding the iron blood sword had odd effects, the blade cut smoothly, leaving a trail of black soot. When the giant was hit with the sword his flesh died where the blade touched. The party was able to destroy the giants and knock over the crystal tower as well as dispelling the magic with in it courtesy of the bard rolling well on her dispel magic check. They saw reinforcements from the other growing towers and ran back to the hut in the woods to rest. The necromancer made more friends and the party saw the more terrible things happening in town. They snuck in after resting and temporarily disabled one of the other towers while the mages were almost done fixing the first broken crystal. The bard used hypnotic pattern on giants to knock them out of the fight and the necromancer had his skeleton with the scary sword sever more of the crystal tower. The party ran off to the cemetery to get more of their own reinforcements in the form of skeletons and met a strange wizard like man that was with the enemy forces. The psychic magic user informed the party the war party from Nabesh was attempting to hit Rhadamanthus with this invasion but showed up too far south. He seemed to specialize in necromancy and illusion and when prodded by the rogue, attempted to slay him with a life draining spell for pestering him endlessly. He teleported away and the party was left to decide what to do and chose to head to the fort in town that was being built and saw the crystal they paralyzed up and running as well as a large rift in the sky with crystal crafts coming through it and hovering above parts of the town. The party found that in the fort the psychic magic user was monologuing to the surviving townsfolk about their new situation and the glory of Nabesh. In a rage the rogue attempted to stab the mind mage in the back and as he sunk the blade inside him found the mage had switched places with one of the townsfolk. He saw the mage stand up in the group of townsfolk and shot him in the eye with an arrow, killing another random townsfolk he changed places with. The mind mage sent the rogue to another realm temporarily with a banishment spell. The bard saw a wizard ally in the crowd unconscious so he healed him. Rigel, the wizard ally took offense to the mind mage and shot him with a lightning bolt, the necromancer shot the mind mage with magic missiles as well. The mind mage had enough and animated the two corpses as zombies and teleported away, leaving the party to kill the zombies as the rogue arrived from his quick other worldly travel. Rigel had the survivors gather and with a scroll teleported them to the abandoned keep on the hill. With their spyglass they were able to observe the arrival of a fleet of smaller warships and a ship the size of a small city. The party rallied the survivors and went off to attack one of the air ships to take control of it while the dwarves and a wizard blew up the portal. They fought against a group of three medium sized crystal men with swords and two large crystal men with great swords. The ship was piloted by a wizard that became hypnotized by one of the bards and the ship fell from one hundred feet in the sky to about fifteen feet and resting on top the bar and bouncing off one of the crystal towers. The party was able to overwhelm the crew from one of the crystal flying ships and have started making their way to the big city sized ship, noting the giant sculpture on top. The mage also lost the skeleton that was holding the ghost sword but found the goblin child Geb playing squire with a hound archon. The party took their borrowed skiff and rammed it into the side of the flying city, sending the tiefling to scout ahead. He saw armed groups of humanoids loading up more skiffs for war, most looked different from the Nabesh natives, they were from other lands with crystals jutting out of their foreheads. There were fomorian guards as well as crystal skulls maintaining order in the city within the chaos. The party could not decide which way to go and eventually raided an empty guard house after divining there were four energy sources keeping the city aloft and one controlling all of them. The closest source was under them so they climbed down a hidden ladder finding the energy source was alive, and a demon made of crystal. The rogue became confused and started arguing with the walls, the wizard sent down his familiar which became stunned with magic and broke on the floor. The party attacked the demon as it started squishing the life out of the rogue. They made quick work of it and the entire structure trembled slightly as the three remaining power sources rebalanced. The party traveled down the east tunnel finding the path to the center of the structure and traveled north, passing harmless crystal scarecrow like creatures working in labs. In the central tunnel they bumped into a crystal skull floating invisibly and blew it up. They found an elevator and took it to the main chamber, encountering a man covered in crystal armor sitting alone. The party instantly attacked him and he called for reinforcements and threw a crystal firestorm at them, which the bard countered. His summoned support was one fomorian giant, two crystal knights, and four crystal skulls. As they joined the fray he devoured one of the skulls to get health back. The party set up walls of fire and terrible magics to combat the force brought against them, the rogue and wizard both fell at points but were healed by their allies. The crystal leader jumped into the crystal wall, becoming a carving on its surface and makings its way to its main weapon, a crystal dinosaur. The party descended on his dinosaur like starving rats to a wounded bear and combat was quick. The leader teleported away, letting his city fall from the sky, leaving the party to find ways to retreat. They made it safely home with a quick explanation of events at the start of their next adventure.
The party prepared themselves for the first bout in the Sporting Maze. They were pitted against another group of first timers and were given the low down of how things work. Ring the bell, defeat or bypass the monsters, and please the crowd. The party headed to the what they believed to be the center of the maze and encountered four-way intersection, choosing to go straight they encountered a beholder, combat ensued and the party lost their enchantments while it looked at them. It closed its main eye to zap as many of them that were trapped in the hallway as possible. It put up a valiant fight but the assassin in the group was able to deal it many crushing blows between its attacks. They traveled ever close to the center and found another four-way intersection and continued south again, ignoring what was to the right or left. They found themselves at a T intersection and went right, finding a dead end with a small jar. The assassin shot the jar and brown mold came out of the cracks. The party ran left and found a string hanging across the passageway and the wizard’s horse bumped it. Rumbling started and they saw a giant boulder come down a ramp and straight into the party’s hallway, crushing a few of them. They started bandaging the wounded and after a minute heard the rumbling again. They ran into the room with the rumbling and found the boulder was falling again and there was space in the room for them to rest up a bit without being crushed again. Between boulders they were able to climb the ramp and find another level of the maze. They traipsed the hall and found it ended with a room with a passage on the right and horrifying teeth, tentacles, and eyes carved into the floors and walls. They drew out the gibbering mouther with a bacon holding mage hand and proceeded to nuke the room with fire magics. It was chased into a corner with a burning sphere of fire and the party was able to run into the far hallway. They reached a chamber with four hallways and noticed there was no sound in the room. They threw bacon from their rations into the room, slapping it around on the floor with mage hand. The bard and assassin grew bored and ran to the center-ward hallway and waited there for the rest of the party, now being able to hear each other again. The bacon investigations lead them to find a reverse gravity spell placed on the center of the chamber and a spiked ceiling around eighty feet above. They watched as their magically illuminated bacon sailed into a bed of spikes. The wizard began to prod a dead end up the tunnel and found it to be soft and pliable, and alive. The wall was a cross between a mimic and a gelatinous cube and engulfed, finding swift unconsciousness. The party pummeled the beast, hitting the wizard a few times as well. The paladin pulled the wizard from the wreck, noting the wizards clothing had been wrecked. They got him back up and running and traveled further into the maze, finding a large chamber with a giant glabrazu demon with a key on his necklace. The assassin spoke with him in forgotten languages and the bard hit him with hypnotic pattern, grabbed the key, and they ran past the demon. After closing the door, they heard the demon yelling about being bamboozled. They found the next four-way chamber full of mushrooms reaching the ceiling and mobile mushrooms going about their business, some small, others around fifteen feet tall. The party asked the best way, leaving the mushrooms be and rushed to the final chamber, seeing their prize ahead of them, a bell incased in magic fifty feet in the air suspended by magic. As they entered the room the cobra headed hydra became visible and battle was unavoidable. The assassin and paladin took massive chunks out of the hydra, sending heads flying. The heads slithered into attack position, still moving after being dismembered. The cleric tossed a wall of fire down the opposite hallway, hoping to slow the other group just in case they were on their way to the chamber and was greeted with a group of screams and counter spells, which the party’s bards countered. Flames filled the hall with more screams and a half orc barbarian with a flame proof coat ran into the chamber holding his badly burnt friends in his arms and once they were safe, he passed out. the party killed the hydra and was able to ring the bell, winning five thousand gold. The group had time to rest for a few days before there next mission.
The next mission the party was assigned was taking a foreign merchant noble around town to see a play as well as visit the arena. The party was curious about her stony companions, but did not press the issue. They made a protective wedge around her and escorted her through the streets towards the theater and were stopped by a sudden hydra, summoned from an item and set against them. They dispatched it with dispelling magic and went after the summoners finding they were chasing human looking children. After pinning one with a section of fence they realized they were Ogre mages and an epic battle began. They put one to sleep not realizing there were more on the rooftops. After a few heated rounds of battle the ogres tried to escape as gaseous clouds but did not get far. The party was able to defeat them and while the bulk of the group examined the bodies the necromancer attempted to kill two random passersby and found himself face to face with two fellow guild members of a much higher ranking. Gerald absorbed the chill touch the necromancer tried to use on him and Ketland mentioned they were looking for a thief. The necromancer ran off and rejoined the group. The party exited the alley and took their charge to the theatre to see a local production. After the play they found the thief their friends were looking for, used a horse like a ramp, and destroyed the thief. The party was joined by their bard friend and a new elf fighter that had come from the Faulty Portal and traveled into the market place on their way to the Arena of Bitka to watch a fight. On the way they were assaulted by brains with legs that jumped out of pots and vacant faced townsfolk approached the party and started attacking. The townsfolk had brain monsters inside of them and the party struggled to defeat them after losing both after the cleric and paladin were removed from the fight by the monsters. Baroness Stone was able to fix them after the battle. The bards also talked with the shop keep that owned the pottery shop that they had ruined with multiple castings of shatter, finding out that two ashen skin figures had clubbed him and he woke up when the bards shook him. He was sad his work was ruined but the elf gave him his saddlebags and the party attempted to mend the damage, but ended up giving him gold to make new wares. They made their way to the arena and watched as Robank’s Avengers competed against the Herd within the sporting maze, an event made to test teams to their limits within a magically altered dungeon experience. They placed bets on the contenders and a few won money on Robank’s Avengers. They watched the Herd, a anthropomorphic monkey man, summon elemental creatures and swarms of animals, eventually falling victim to a pit of mimics. The party took their earnings, their charge, and their won horses to the Faulty Portal to rest up and have a few drinks. They noticed a duck arguing with a wizard inside a giant force cage, and after a bit of snooping found out it was in fact a demon with a duck tattoo. They had drinks with the Baroness as well as the victorious team and talked with a wizard for a bit too. While having shots of blinding whiskey they were attacked by assassins attempting to remove the Baroness and were soundly destroyed by the pile of heroes in the area. They bid her farewell the next morning and now prepare for their first bout in the Sporting Maze.