Princes of the Apocalypse

22 Ches – 1491: Lance Rock
The rise of the undead king

The next morning, the party splits up again as they both have different business to attend before heading out. Nearis and Melody made their way towards the blacksmith for the trade. Just as they arrive at the blacksmith, they blacksmith’s wife walks out. “Why good morning!” she said recognizing Nearis. “Good morning to you too!” Nearis replied. He thought that this might be the perfect time to ask her about the disappearance of the wagons of the Thunderstaff family. “May I ask if now is a good time to inquire more information about the disappearance of the trade wagons around the neighborhood?” The woman looked up to Nearis. “I am sorry about yesterday sir. With the kids about, I was just trying to protect my family. Strange things have been happening in Red Larch lately.” She looked worried about what might happen to her family. “Not to worry, we understand that you are trying to protect your family. What kind of rumors do speak of?” Nearis asked her. “Well, the weather is acting strange, sir. And there have been sightings of people near Lance Rock.”
“I see, well, do not worry. We are on our way to investigate it. Everything will be alright” Nearis tried to console the woman. And as she continued her chores, Nearis and Melody walk in the blacksmith’s shop. The blacksmith was already working. As Nearis and Melody walked in, they heard loud clinging of a hammer smashing on metal.
“Excuse me Master Smith!” Nearis shouted out.” Eldras looked up to see Nearis and Melody and he put down his hammer and made his way to help his customers. “Yes, good morning!” he said.
“You are up early! Are you always working this much?” Nearis asked the man. “Aye, sir. All I see is my bed and my workshop. How may I be of service?” he said. Nearis shook his head understanding and respecting the smith. “I came here to trade my scimitar for a longsword.” And he took out his scimitar to hand it over to the smith. “Ah yes.” He took out a blade covered in cloth. The blade looked sturdy and well crafted. “May it serve you well!” he said while trading the longsword for the Scimitar.  He immediately inspects the scimitar as Nearis started inspecting the longsword. They both nodded in agreement of the trade. Nearis bowed and made way for Melody. “Hello, sr. I can for the short sword you were crafting for me.” She said. “Yes, that one is ready as well.” He went to the back and came back with a small chest that contained the short word. He handed it over to Melody. “There you go, miss. That’ll be 10 gold pieces.” As she is about to hand him the gold, Melody sees no sheet that suits the sword. “Is there no sheath that comes with this sword?” she asks and retracts her hand with the gold pieces. “No… you requested a sword. I made you one.” He answered. “But I request a sheath with this sword. Carrying a sword like this is just too dangerous. Do you have one that fits this sword?”. The smith grunts and goes looking for one. He comes back a few moments later with a sheath for the sword. “This one should suit it. That’ll be 15 gold pieces in total then.” Upon hearing that the smith requests 5 gp for the sheath, Melody’s voice got serious “No, that’ll be 10 total. If I buy a sword, I expect there to be a sheath with it.” The smith looked begrudgingly at Melody. After a bit of word exchange, the smith agreed to sell it for 10 gp in total.

Meanwhile, Dustin and Dvergar went on the way to get a haircut. The establishment looked very shady. The first room they were in as they entered, was like a lounge. There were a few guys with a mug in their hands. Dvergar and Dustin could both see a very thin guy cutting hair. He was a very energetic man. Dvergar and Dustin waited as the guy finished cutting. Walking in to the lounge, he greeted Dvergar and Dustin. “Why good morning, sirs! How may I be of service?” he said with a joy in his voice. “I Would like to get a haircut and have my beard braided.” Dvergar said. “The hair won’t be a problem… but braiding a beard…” he said with a slight uncertainty in his voice. “that will be 4 silver pieces in total.” Dvergar noticed the uncertainty and replied “How about I pay full price if you can braid my beard and half when you can’t?” This raised the man’s uncertainty. ”Uhm, sure. That sounds fair. I guess” the man said to Dvergar. Dvergar was guided towards a chair and Dustin made himself comfortable with a mug of ale. “Seems like yer not only a barber!” Dvergar stated as he has been handed a mug of ale himself. “That is true. Besides a barber, I provide a few other services. Serving as a tavern is one of them.” The man said smiling as he prepared to cut Dvergar’s hair. “how may I cut it? Hhe asked. “Just trim the tips that’ll do.” As the man started trimming the tips, Dvergar heard a faint “Oops, hehe…” coming from the man. He let out a faint sight and asked “Do you perhaps know more where I can find the constable?” The man looked at Dvergar with curiousity. “You can find him in his stay here in the town.” The man said. Dvergar, who was a bit curious about this constable replied with another question “what does he do? I mean what’s his function?” The man had finished trimming the hair and looks at Dvergar’s beard. “well, he is, besides the constable, a judge for local disputes and the commander of the guard. I think he is a busy man. Now to get this beard done…” The man lets out small sigh and starts braiding the beard. After a few minutes of useless tries the man yells out “There! Perfect!” and he takes up a mirror to show Dvergar. Except, he moves so quick with the mirror to cover up his fail on the beard. Dvergar got irritated and pulled the mirror from his hands and had a decent look. The beard was looking bad. It was sticking to every side and it had no clean form. As he looked up to check his hair, he noticed the marking on his forehead. He immediately realized that therefore people are pointing at him and laughing or discussing his appearance. He tried to wipe it off with his hands, but it seems that It had no effect. He grumbled a bit, readjusted his beard and stood up. “Here is your 2 sp… thank you” and he made his way outside. He had a thought of asking Melody to braid his beard as she would have knowledge on this with her hair.

As the group gathered in the center of the crossroad, they made their way to Lance Rock once more. They didn’t encounter anything on the way there and as they got there, Nearis ordered his retainers to set up camp and wait for them at the menhir. While Nearis was explaining Kildaraen and Baladir what to do, the others noticed heads of the zombies that they had slain before on the signs. They warily walked in and headed to the room on the right when entering. This was where they Returned to exit the cave next time. And Nearis’ detect good and evil immediately made him feel that there were still 3 of the skeletons he felt earlier. Nearis walks in the room straight towards a skeleton that is against the wall. He stands in front of it and examines it. Without any further ado, he takes out his sword and stabs it. The skeleton screeches at Nearis and slashes him straight on the chest, wounding him. The other skeletons wake up by the screech of the stabbed on. Dvergar, seeing the skeletons come alive, rushes towards the one going towards Nearis and attacks it. Dustin rushes over to help Nearis but slashes wide at the skeleton and misses. Melody, shooting from afar, shoots at the 3rd skeleton making its way towards the others. With her crossbow, she wounded it slightly. Nearis, swinging his sword against the skeleton that attacked him, shatters it in pieces with a strong swing. Meanwhile, Dvergar bashes the skeleton apart. Dustin rushes over to the other one and hits it quite hard. This was enough for Melody to pierce a bolt straight through its skull.

View
21 Ches – 1491: Rumors of Red Larch

As the sun rose, so did the party, though drunk, Dvergar woke up without much trouble. This counted for the others as well. They soon felt really energetic and good because of the hearty meal they had. As they started to pack for their journey to Red Larch, Melody rushes over to Dvergar, who takes a sip of the Ale that was still on the table while wiping the drool from his face. "A DRAGON! DVERGAR, SHE CHANGED INTO A DRAGON!" Melody yelled with the same force of excitement she had as first. "A dragon?" Dvergar asked confused. "There’s no way she’s a dragon, ya hear lassie" He responded as he took another sip of the Ale. "BUT SHE DID! A REAL DRAGON WITH WINGS AND AND AND TEETH AND CLAWS!!! AND WINGS!!!" She said jumping up and down of excitement. "There’s NO way she was! Ye’ve been dreamin! Everytin was quiet ‘ere."

As they walked on the road towards Red Larch, Melody kept trying to convince Dvergar that there was indeed a dragon. She did not doubt what she has seen. This excitement, this joy. There was no way that this was a lie. Though Dvergar showed impressive feat of the stubbornness of dwarves and refused to believe such tale. On the way, about 10 miles on the left side of Red Larch, they saw a hill with a stone. The entire party decided to check out this stone before continuing to Red Larch and they started walking towards it. The way to the hill was a wilderness, though they did not seem to have any difficulties getting through it. Upon arriving at the top of the hill, they found a menhir. The menhir was well known. This was the Narrow Menhir of Bare Gray Rock. The menhir was clear to see between the other rocks. It was jutting towards the east and had a different hue than the surrounding rocks. As the party inspected the menhir, Melody saw a trial towards the south. About 100 feet of the menhir, there was a small trial leading towards a ravine. The trial was surrounded by thick bushes. As Melody walked towards it, she immediately noticed a sign. As she walked over, so did Dvergar and Nearis. The text on the sign was clear:

"Come no closer lest you catch the disfiguring plague that afflicts me!" – The Lord of Lance Rock

The party looked at each other… They tried to see if there was something else within the trail. They all noticed a 2nd sign a bit further in the trail. "Should we go in?" asked Melody. "I don’t know…. I don’t like what is written on the sign…" said Nearis. "ya scared, Half-Elf?" provoked Dvergar. Nearis glared for a second at him and as he was doing, he clutched his holy symbol, invoking a holy magic as he uttered a small prayer. "Tempus thanks you, to hunt these demons, give me guiding light to vanquish my foes and I thank Tempus". The ring bearing the symbol of Tempus started to glow. Melody immediately understood what Nearis was doing and glanced at him with curiosity as to what his magic will do. Nearis glared into the trail. The magic he cast was known as "Detect Evil and Good". During his focus, he could sense a dark evil from this trail. "Not scared, dwarf" he scoffed. "I have learned not to be as reckless" he said while glaring into the trail to ‘feel’. "This is stupid!" said Dvergar in a lightly irritated voice as he as well started casting. As he was casting, his veins in his arm became a bit pumped and he received a feign glow of aura around himself. He scoffed at Nearis. "Not reckless…" he mumbled to himself as he walks to the second sign.

Dvergar reached the second sign without a problem. "Well?? What does it say!" yelled Melody. "Looks like the same fer me lass!" he answered. "It says:"

"Come no closer lest you catch the disfiguring plague that afflicts me!" – The Lord of Lance Rock

Melody and Nearis looked at each other and started walking towards the dwarf, who was already, slowly but surely, walking deeper in this ravine. "You guys set camp, we will be back soon!" Nearis yelled at the servant and the squire. "Y-yes sir!" both replied.

As they went deeper, they got to an open area with an entrance to a cave. The evil coming from this location got stronger as they continued. Melody used her magical flames and created torches within the cave to light it up. They saw a body on the floor. As they slowly got closer, they saw that the body was already decomposing. Nearis felt an evil aura around the body. He glared as he continued behind the dwarf. Dvergar was eager to find what was within this cave, as he wanted to walk in the bigger room, Nearis sensed an evil presence almost directly above them. "Above!" he yelled as he ducked down. Dvergar, upon hearing this walked into the main room of the cave and looked up. He saw 2 undead standing on an edge with boxes in their hands. As he was reaching for his weapon one of them threw the box on to Dvergar. Caught in between pulling his sword and seeing the box come towards him, he was unable to respond and took the full blow. The undead jumped down and attack Dvergar. Melody was quick and her aim was true as she shoots the undead in the chest right after Dvergar missed his swing. Nearis rushed passed Dvergar "Let me show you how it is done, dwarf" he said and slide right behind the undead, cleaving it in 2. The other undead did exactly the same. It was noticeable to the party that these undead were not mindless. They were given instructions. Someone or something gave them these instructions to attack any intruder. As the second undead landed, he too got a bolt straight to the chest. Dvergar pummeled the undead followed by another cleave of Nearis. "I sense more…" said Nearis. "Ugh… I hate not being able to see in the dark!" said Melody with an unpleased voice as she light up the place once more. The cave had 2 extra narrow ways on each side. One was long and dark, while the other had a turn in it. Nearis and Melody noticed dragging marks right at the turn of the path. "Well… Can we enter this one? Oi! Lassie Light up this cave will ya!" yelled Dvergar as he was inspecting the path on the left. "Yes yes!" said Melody as she flicked her hands to create torches within the path. They both looked toward the way of the cave, but were unable to see something special. Dvergar then rushes over to the other side and walks right into the pathway on the right. Nearis, was already walking within the path. He had stopped because he sensed a presence there. Presence of more evil creatures. "D’ya see anything?" asked Dvergar. "There is something in there…" replied Nearis. As he says, he feels Dvergar pushing him aside to have a look. The room he was looking in was a small room. The drag marks were indeed leading towards this room. On the wall he saw bodies hanging. Some were fresh, others were less and more decomposed. In the middle of the room was a pile of bodies. Dvergar made notion to enter as he felt a hand on his shoulder. "Enter, and three undead will have your head before me" he heard Nearis whisper in his ear. Though this was neither in the habit of Nearis nor Dvergar, both of them slowly backed away. They had a different mission then slay these foul beasts. As they made their way to the entrance of the cave, Nearis stabbed the decomposed body as he still felt an evil aura being emitted from it. As his sword slides through its neck, the body suddenly lives and tries to grab Nearis. Melody shoots the undead followed by another stab of Nearis. He felt the evil aura fade away as he saw the life leaving the body. "Let us continue." He said to the other two. "Red Larch is waiting".

As they enter Red Larch, Nearis and Melody look for a blacksmith. They didn’t have to look long for a blacksmith. They soon enter the smithy ‘Tantur Smithy’. As they enter, Dvergar disappears towards the in for a keg of Ale. The smithy was run by a man named Eldras Tantur. It was noticeable that the smithy was a family business, as Nearis and Melody saw younger lads hammering on armor and weapons. "Excuse us!" yelled Nearis. "Aye, I’ll be right there!" they heard a man yell from the back. 3 minutes pass as they hear the clinging in the back stop. A well build man with black hair came forth. "Aye, thanks for waitin" His accent was a real local accent. It was Heavy, but understandable. "How may I serve ya!" he said. "I would like to trade this Scimitar" said Nearis as he hands the scimitar over. "Trade it? For what would you like to trade it then?" he asked while inspecting the scimitar. "Do you, perchance, have a longsword?" Nearis asked. The man looked at him. "A longsword? I see you have a mighty fine one right there. Is there something wrong with that one?" now glaring at the noble longsword Nearis is carrying. Nearis looked back at the man "Not really, she still cleaves as she must. But a change of arms for the young one outside might do well." he said while nodding his head to the entrance of the shop. "Aye, a good trade it is." He reaches out his hand to shake while he hands the scimitar back to Nearis. "I will have it ready by tomorrow morning!" Nearis takes the scimitar back and shakes the smithy’s hand. "Well met, master smith. I will see you in the morning then!" Melody jumped up and said "I would also like to buy something!" as the smithy turns over to Melody, and barters with her, Nearis wanders around in the shop. Once her shopping was done and she left the building, Nearis addressed the Smith once more. "Excuse me, Master Smith. I have another question…" "Aye? What is now? Your sword will be ready by the morning…" the Smith replied. "It is not about the sword… I noticed you have a lot of wagons to fix… might you have heard about rumors that wagons and caravans disappear?" he asked with a serious face. "Not really, I don’t leave my smith too much… is always lots o’ work" the smith said while trying to recall any memory of rumors he might have heard. "So… it is not like there are more wagons or caravans to repair than usual?" Nearis asked. "Not that I am aware of… business has always been good… Now, if you will excuse me…" as the smith turns around to go back to hammering, his wife enters the shop. "Oh? I am sorry to intrude dear. I didn’t know you were talking to a customer" she said looking at Nearis. "Nearis Hawkwinter, of Waterdeep" Introducing himself with a bow. "Might I ask you a question?" asked Nearis. "Well, sure… what is it that I can be of service?" She said. "Have you…perchance, heard of a rumor of caravans and wagons disappearing…?" he asked her. "Sir, I would like to ask you not to talk of such matters at this point" she replied hastily and with a cautious concern as she looked towards her children. "Right…" said Nearis. "Perhaps tomorrow then" he said while shrugging. "I think that would be best, sir" she replied. As Nearis walks outside, he noticed that Dvergar was not there. Holding his hand in front of his face he looks at Baladir. "Where did he wander off to…?" he asked with slight irritation. "Sir, that way sir! He went of that way" Baladir responded with an eager to help voice. "I can guess where he went to, probably to an Inn or Tavern or some sorts. His keg was empty!" said Melody.

 

Dvergar, who has indeed wandered off to find an inn, has stumbled into a building in search of ale. The building he has stumbled in looks too nice to be a local pub. It looked like a huge dining room. The likes of which only the higher society can dine in. Dvergar, however, wandered in without any thought of where he was heading. One could say his sense of alcoholic beverages has lead him towards this building. When he entered, he didn’t pay much attention to the environment and he hasn’t notice Dustin sitting in the corner of this establishment. No, he walked straight ahead towards the bar.
Dustin, who has been here before the party, just sat quietly and kept an eye on Dvergar.
At this moment, Dvergar was halted by a waitress. She was very tall and beautiful woman with long blond hair tied into a ponytail.
“Good evening, Master dwarf. I am Kaylessa. I am the owner of this fine establishment.” She says.
Dvergar, currently looking up to see her responds with an pleased voice “Ah yes, Good e’enin indeed! This is indeed a lovely place you have…”
“Why, thank you. Would you like a drink sir? A Mug of Ale? Or perhaps an entire cask?” Seeing Dvergar thirsty.
These words were like music to Dvergar. “A-A cask would do fine thank you!” he said with a sparkle of joy in his eyes. “A cask it is then.” And she made her way toward the bar.
Dustin, still sitting in his corner, sees Dvergar stand still in the middle of the way, looking around at the decorations on the wall. It is now that Dvergar notices that the tapestry on the wall pictures the gorgeous Red Larch trees. The tapestry covers a large amount of the wall and it adds a certain unique atmosphere to the inn. As Dvergar’s eyes are gazing upon the tapestry, the customers’ eyes are slowly turning to the dwarf standing in the middle of the way. But this didn’t seem to bother Dvergar. Kaylessa soon returned with a cask in her arms. “A Cask of ale, as request” She said smiling while handing over the cask. “Would you rather not sit?” pointing at an empty table.
‘Ah yes…yes…”Dvergar sits himself and immediately starts on the cask. After receiving the payment of the cask, Kaylessa turns to walk away but was stopt by Dvergar. “’Scuse me miss….”
“Kaylessa, The owner of ‘Tthe swinging sword’” she said with a smile. “Yes, Miss Kaylessa… I wonder if ya kno where I can find a barber.”
“A barber? Why sir, you should speak with Gilkaen. He will be able to help you with that. Anything else you wish to know, master dwarf?” She says with a smile.
“Yes… actually.. I’m looking for Harb….” He stops abruptly. Thinking. Kaylessa looks at him curious “Yes? You are looking for….?”
“Har… Harbuk…. Harburk! The constable!” Finally remembering the name.
“Ooh. The constable. You can find him a bit further down the road. Over the crossroad sir.”
“Thank you.” Dvergar said. And with this, Kaylessa makes her way over the barmaids. They start talking and pointing very secretly to Dvergar. Yet their eyes had a slight hint of fear in them. Dvergar and Dustin, who still haven’t talked to eachother, both notice that they are talking about Dvergar. Dvergar, however, has been pouring the ale n his mouth directly from the cask. This again called upon the gazes of the other customers towards the dwarf who, unknowingly, keeps drinking his ale.

Meanwhile, Nearis and Melody make their way towards the crossroad in search of the dwarf. They stumble unto the Swinging sword, where Dvergar is. The Swinging sword is right across a very dark and jolly pub. Nearis and Melody look at eachother. “There is no way he went in that fancy place…” Said Melody while she gazed upon the building of the Swinging sword qnd its wooden scimitqr qs q sign. “Indeed… Let us make way to the other side…” replied Nearis and made his way across the Swinging Sword.

The other side was the opposite. It is a ram shackled 2 story tavern with very dirty windows. The sign was a warrior’s bucket helm with the name written underneath it. “The helm at high sun”. Though upon closer inspection, Nearis saw that the warrior’s helm was a washtub turned upside down. Though ram shackled, it had more movement in it than there was on the street. A man was carried out on a gurney, half dead, half drunk. It was obvious that he had more than his share Nearis and Melody looked how the man was dumped in the middle of the street by 2 men, supposedly working in here.
Nearis walks in followed by Melody. It was as crowded as it sounded. There was not much light in this pub. It was a very old place. The floor was a dark colored wood. Nearis stops a waiter.
“Excuse me… I am looking for a dwarf”
Th waiter looks baffled at Nearis. “A…A dwarf, sir? I…I am sorry, I just serve here sir… I don’t pay much attention to the customers…” he said and scuffled onwards to serve a group of men.
Nearis and melody walked up to the bar. The bar was very long. It looked like it had its time, but it was still very sturdy.
“Excuse me, sir!” Nearis called out.
“I’ll be with you in a second” said the bar man busy tapping Ale and Mead.
Nearis and Melody waited. While they waited, they looked around to hear some of the local rumors. Looking left, Nearis spots a man and a woman. Obviously flirting with each other. “No rumors can come from those two.” he thought to himself. Listening further, he heard lots of War Stories and stories of people’s greatest exploits. These, however, didn’t catch his attention. Until he set his eyes on a table where 4 men were sitting. One was talking about monsters around Red Larch. Clearly exaggerated due to his drunken state, but Nearis was curious non-the less.
At that time, the barman turned towards Nearis. “yes? What will it be?” he asked.
Nearis, slowly turning his head to the barman while still gazing towards the table replied. “Five mugs of ale please!”
“Aye, 5 Ales. Coming right up!” he confirmed.
Melody, who was also waiting at the bar, tried to get the attention of the barkeeper. She climbed on a chair and spoke to the barman who had just handed Nearis his mugs. “’Scuse me. I notice that there is no entertainment here.”
“Aye, Th’is true.” He answered. Finally noticing that a small red haired Halfling is talking to him.
“How about I enlighten this place with my entertainment?” looking straight up to the barman.
“Sure, if you want to” he said, gesturing towards an empty table.
Melody nods and makes her way towards the empty table. She casts her Dancing lights on the table. This immediately got everyone’s attention. Except, not the attention Melody was expecting. Everyone reacted very scared. It was obvious that people were wary and even scared of magic being cast. This did not stop Melody though “Oooh, don’t worry! I am here to entertain you guys! Be happy that you have the privilege to hear my songs!” she said while pulling out her Kalimba. This scared the people even more as her Kalimba was made from bones. “No worries, this is just the look of my instrument! You shall forget it the moment you hear how it sounds!”
She starts to play a very slow and sad song. Though it seems that people, in their drunken state, failed to notice that this was a sad song and they start laughing and cheering. Melody, surprised by the reaction on the song, continued to play and switched to a faster song. This time, the people started jumping on their tables and dancing. Clearly enjoying the music.  Though none of them threw any coins to Melody. After her performance, she made her way back to the bar for her money.
“That was quite a performance. But I cannot give you money for it… How about a hearty meal instead?” Slightly disappointed, Melody agrees on the food. “Sure, for now I’ll take the food.”
She received a plate of Chicken with bread and some cheese. Melody started eating meal and it tasted not bad.

Meanwhile, Nearis had already taken a chair and sat next to the guys talking about monsters. “Hello gentlemen! How about a round of drinks for everyone! On me!” he said as he hands a mug of ale to each one of them. “Yeeeeaaaa!!!” they cheered.
“So, my ears have picked up on something you were saying. I would love to hear your story as well!” said Nearis.
“Story? Boooy have I some stories for you, heheheeeee” the drunken man said with a huge smile. “No no no, sorry, that is not what I meant!” Nearis said quickly before the man started talking. The man’s smile immediately turned into a frown. “I would like to know more about these ‘monsters’ you were speaking of! We will talk about your stories after this!”
The man, slightly disappointed but enthusiastic to tell his story after this, started speaking. “Well, I can tell you what I have heard. I mean, I haven’t seen them myself. But these monsters appear in the mines! Aye…”
“So you haven’t actually seen the monsters?” Nearis asked. “No, you should ask Dunkerd at the mines! He has seen them!” the man replied. “And when do these appear? Also, what kind of monsters appear?” Asked Nearis. “He was working late and suddenly these weird guys with long robes appear. They had stone faces!”
“Stone faces? That’s peculiar, isn’t it?” Said Nearis, not sure if he should take him serious. “I haven’t seen them myself, but if you want more information, you can speak to Dunkar or Mellikho.” The man replied.
“Mellikho?” Nearis looked at the man with a questioning face. “Aye, he runs the mine! Alberi Mellikho!”
“I see, well thank you very much.” Just as Nearis was about to stand up, the man immediately looks to Nearis with a strong gaze. “So, do you want to hear my stories?”
Nearis, looking at the man “How about I buy another round for you gentleman!” He heaved hs mug and let out a loud “Heeeuuuy!” the men joined him and seem to immediately forget about the stories. Giving Nearis the opportunity to walk away. Melody, who had just finished eating, noticed Nearis walk towards her. They both leave the tavern.

Dustin, who is still sitting in the corner in “The Swinging Sword”,  still keeps an eye on Dvergar. Kaylessa is still discussing things with her servants about Dvergar and the mark on his head. During this time, Nearis and Melody walk in in search of Dvergar. Dvergar, seeing them enter, start shouting and waving at them. “OOOI! O’er ‘ere! There’s a table fer us!”
Nearis, however, completely ignored Dvergar thinking “what a senile old dwarf” and heads towards Dustin. Melody makes her way towards the bar at the end of the establishment. “Excuse me miss, may I provide some music for this establishment in exchange of gold?”
Kaylessa, looking way down to see a small Halfling talk to her, replies in a gentle tone “Why of course young miss, please, go ahead. You shall, however, be payed depending on the entertainment.”
Melody nods and makes her way to the stage. Unlike the Helm, this place has a dedicated place for performaning! Melody played the same tactic as in the Helm. She starts with the slow and sad song, but unlike the Helm, there was a obvious bad reaction to this song. “I am not sure if this was such a great idea.” She thought to herself. Melody quickly finished her song and started her faster one. This one had a positive reaction. Some people were clapping, others were silently enjoying the song. While Melody started her second song, Dvergar had taken his cask in his had and started walking around the building. He had a lot of people staring at him while he was doing this. But he didn’t seem to care about them. When the second song finished, Melody received a hearty applause and even some gold for her performance. In the mean time, Dvergar had made his way towards Kaylessa. “I’m sorry miss, but this cask is on his account.” He said while pointing at Nearis. “He will pay for this.”
Kaylessa looked at the dwarf “Oh? I will inquire this immediately sir. Thank you for letting us know.” And she scuffled towards Nearis. “Hello sir, welcome to this establishment. I am Kaylessa, the owner of this place.” She said to Nearis. Nearis, as a nobleman he is, replied “Good Evening! This is a fine establishment you have here! Very lovely!”
“Why thank you, sir.” She said flattered. “I have been told that you are paying for his consumption of that cask. Is this so?” She said to Nearis while pointing at Dvergar, who is still walking around and enjoying the tapestry. Nearis sighed very deep and put his hand against his forehead. “What did he have? Just that cask?”
“Yes, sir. Also, might I get you something to drink?” She said. Nearis, glares at Dvergar for a second and then turns to Kaylessa. “ Sure, 5 mugs please” he said while gesturing Kildaraen and Baladir to join them. “Understood, sir.” and she made her way back to the bar. This time, Kildaraen speaks to Nearis with a trembling voice, scared of the reaction he might get seeing Nearis take out his churning amulet. “Sir, uhm, May I ask if we could get some spending money as well?” Nearis, sighing even more “Sure….” And hands 5 silver pieces to Kildaraen and Baladir each. “Why thank you sir!” they both thanked Nearis deeply for his kindness.

Kaylessa returned with the 5 mugs of ale and turned towards them all “May I ask, Are you adventurers?” she asked looking at them all. “We are, said Dustin. “There are some rumors going about here in Red Larch… and they are quite disturbing…” she said with a troubled look on her face. “What kind of Rumors” Melody asked. “Unexplainable things happen around here with the weather… sudden thick fog that rises around Sumber Hills. Hot winds coming from the west, where cold wind has always blown. But also violent sights… like Lighting Jolting upwards. Don’t you think this as strange?” she said. “This indeed not natural…” replied Nearis upon hearing this. “I have told Luruth, one of our towns Elderly, about this. But he said these were just rumours. Also, I have my theory about this. I think that this is all linked to Lance Rock. The hill with the Menhir not far from here. There were illegal people sighted in the caves around that area. I would like to offer 50 gold pieces to investigate this.” She looked up to the party. “Well… we cannot leave things as they are, now can we?” Nearis said towards Melody and Dustin. They both nod and Nearis turns over to Kaylessa “We will accept. We shall investigate this place. We already know where it is as well. So you have talked to the Elderly in the village about this?” he said to Kaylessa. She looked with a joy in her eyes that someone is finally going to investigate the events going on around Red Larch. “Yes, I have told the elderly and the Constable. But they all told me these were all rumors. I have a feeling that they are hiding something.”
“Not to worry, we shall take this up on us and investigate this. Do you perhaps have rooms for us to stay at night before we take off to investigate?” asked Nearis. “Why yes! We do! This will be free of charge as a thank you. We shall show you to your room once you are ready to sleep.” They both thank each other and Kaylessa makes her way back to serve the other customers. Meanwhile Dvergar has joined the group at the table. They tell the rumors that they have heard to each other and they make way to bed.  

While everyone is falling asleep, Dvergar puts his hand on the egg inside his bag as he always does when he sleeps. He felt something else though. He was not sure what it was. He took out the egg to see if it was not a fake. It was the egg indeed, there was no mistake. Though it seemed to have changed. The texture has altered. Dvergar inspected the egg further. The Crach had gone and the color changed. After inspecting the egg, Dvergar put it away, thinking of what might have happened to it for it to change. He put his hand on the book and the other on the egg and fell asleep.

View
20 Ches – 1491: The Bandits and the Lady

After the brief moment of reminiscence on the hill, Melody, Dustin and Nearis spot some smoke in the distance. Meanwhile, Dvergar is completely oblivious as to what is coming towards the group and is still in awe of the events that are happing. A squinting their eyes, they were able to see that these were carriages. Though they see that this is coming their way, they decide to continue on their road to Red Larch.

Dustin walked in front, followed by Melody and Dvergar, who walked next to each other. Nearis walked behind them so he could keep an eye out on all of them. After a brief moment of walking, they see a carriage rushing towards them. Dustin, with full confidence, stays in the middle of the road. Upon seeing this, the carriage suddenly comes to halt. Nearis noticed that the carriage comes from a lower-middle class noble. They also noticed a Symbol of protection on the carriage. Nearis walked up to them and greeted them as any Good Noble would do. Hello, there good sirs!" "Please, don’t kill me! I will give you all my money" the man shout when seeing the group. "Money? Sir that is not what we require of you… What happened? Please, calm down." Nearis responded with shock. "Yes, please. We don’t need your money, but what happened? Please tell us" Dustin added. The Merchant looked shocked, though somewhat relieved. "Oh?? You… you are not going to rob me??" the man stated while hiding the pouch of money he had already taken out. Dustin and Nearis looked at each other. "No, you may put away your money. What happened? What is the reason of your distress?" Dustin asked. The man looked wary at Dustin and Nearis. "Well…sorry… but… how am I to know I can trust you?" the man replied. "Nearis stepped forward. "I am Nearis Hawkwinter" he said humbly and bowed. "At your service… I am most certain you have heard of the name ‘Hawkwinter’ from Waterdeep?" he added, while showing his family signet ring. The man’s eyes suddenly opened wide and he relaxed a bit upon seeing the ring. "Yes, yes! I do sir! I am Gareth Silvercloak. I come from Red Larch’s festival… but, we were attacked not far from here. Bandits…They looked like pirates!" he said with his head down. "They attacked us with boulders, we were ambushed. Our other carriage… he…they… we ran for it when we heard the boulders fall and saw the bandits! They… Gods… Please… let me pass" he begged. This time, Dvergar walked over. "Ya dun have any Ale in ‘ere do ya!?" he snarled at Gareth. "No… no sir… I don’t… I just came from a festival from Red Larch with merchandise… Please… good sirs… Let me be on the way…" Gareth replied. Nearis looked at the driver. Who, giving the state of events they went through, was quite calm. "You there, these events do not seem to shock you?" "I have seen worse." Snarled the driver uninterested. Upon closer inspection, it was clear that the driver had really seen pretty much anything that can happen. He was a generally sad person, trying to survive of the loan that is provided to him by serving lesser nobles. "Very well…" Nearis continued. "Sir, I want you to go to Amphail. Ask for Armar Blaskos Ulraven. Tell him anything that happened to you." "We will see if we can find what happened to your other carriage." "Thank you kind sirs!! Thank you! Yes, I will tell the Armar everything! Thank you!" Gareth replied.

The carriage slowly started moving, but after a few feet, they bolted towards Amphail.

The group continued their journey towards Red Larch.

A few hours have passed, and they started to entered, what looked like a rocky formation on a hill. On this very hill, they found the second carriage. All of them became wary. Dustin stepped forward and noticed a body. He started inspecting the body and noticed that the body did not die by sword… Or any arcane ways. It was crushed by something big! The body was within an imprint of a huge footprint. Though, he was not able to identify the footprint.

Nearis looked around and saw that this was indeed an ambush. The bandits were well prepared, as there were still a few boulders ready to be knocked over the edge.

Melody walked over to the carriage to inspect it. Upon getting closer, she noticed that this was indeed the carriage of Gareth, as it had the same look and warding sigil on it. Suddenly, the doors opened and a female, humanoid, form stepped out of the tipped over carriage. She was very tall, so tall that it hurt Melody’s neck looking up. Though, this was not a difficult thing to achieve, looking at Melody’s height. Melody removed her hair from in front of her and the first thing she noticed about this strange woman were her eyes. They were yellow. Yellow, yet not normal, human, eyes. "Woooaaa!! Helloooo freaky woman with weird eyes!!! Who might you be??" asked Melody while stumbling a bit to the back. "That would be my question to you…" replied the woman. Melody, still looking a bit shocked, yelled out to the group. "GUUUUUUYYYSSSSS!!! THERE IS SOMEONE OVER HEEERE! I am sorry freaky lady, but I need the support, because… you are tall, and I am this small…" The group rushed towards Melody. "Why hello miss, who might you be?" asked Dustin. "I am Lhammaruntosz, who might you all be?" the woman replied. "I am Dustin, a seafaring cleric" said Dustin.

"I am Nearis Hawkwinter, of House Hawkwinter of Waterdeep. At your service" Said Nearis while bowing. "What happened? Did you come out of the wagon? Who attacked you? Are you hurt?" asked Nearis quickly.

"I am fine" she replied. "We were on our way from Red Larch and we were attacked by bandits… that is all." She replied way too calm considering the situation she was in. "Are you sure you are ok? Where are the bandits now? And how come they didn’t attack you?" barraging the woman with more questions. "They fled. Something… Scared them off" she said. "Something scared of the bandits?" asked Nearis. "You do seem extremely calm considering the situation." He stated… "What was your business anyway?" "My business is my own! What might yours be?" she scoffed at Nearis. Nearis, obviously, starting to get angered by the woman replied with a bit of irritation to his voice "That is, just like you, our own! NOW… tell us what happened here!" As he said that, he bashed on the wagon next to Lhammaruntosz. "You have been here in that wagon… that was attacked by bandits, yet… you give us so little information. Tell. Us. What. You. Know!" Lhammaruntosz looked up, but was not intimidated by Nearis. "Are you not going after the bandits that attacked me?" she replied calmly to Nearis’s outburst.

Dvergar stepped in and took Lhammaruntosz to a place where she can sit. "All the same with these lads, not thinking about the courtesy! ‘Ere, have a sit miss!" She looked curiously at Dvergar, but gently replied to the sudden courtesy of the old dwarf "Why thank you."

"You…" she said while looking at Dvergar. Her yellow eyes, almost piercing in his soul, looked very firm at him. "You carry something ominous and of great value….Young Dwarf." She looked at him with a firm grasp. Upon hearing this, Dvergar immediately knew she was talking of his book. The book that he has found, though knew so little about. He quickly but his hand on his belt and pushed the book behind him. "I’ve no idea what ye’r talkin ‘bout!" he said, as he looked if the other members of his group were listening.

Meanwhile, Nearis saw Melody curl down. He became suddenly interested in this, what looked like a red ball of fur, inscribe a ritual on the ground and started curiously smiling at the red ball of hair move over the ground. She started a ritual to detect magic. Looking at the group, Lhammaruntosz noticed this and started smiling.

Dustin was inspecting the surroundings during this time

Dvergar noticed that the group was not looking and whispered "You… You know what this is??" and he took out the book. Her eyes opened wide with interest and she reached out to it. "No touchin’it!" scoffed Dvergar. "Tell me what you know!" "This book is more than you can handle, dwarf. It will lead you to your death! But I would gladly take it over from you…" Dvergar immediately pulled the book back. "So be it then, this book stays with me."

Dustin, still standing about, heard the entire conversation. He did not react to it, instead, looked over to Melody and Nearis.

At this moment, Melody finished her ritual. The moment the red ball of hair stood straight, the ground around her glowed and she closed her eyes for a moment. Once she opened them, her eyes were filled with arcane magic. She looked at Lhammaruntosz and did see indeed a magical aura engulfing her. She also noticed a magical aura from Dvergar, even though curious, she kept it for herself.

Nearis asked "Where did the bandits go?" and while saying that, he snapped his fingers. Baladir, one of his house servants, ran over to him "Yes Sir?" he asked. "They went into the cave at the side of that hill…" and she pointed towards the hill on their right side. "I see…" replied Nearis. "I will prepare food and drinks for when you return from killing this bandit." The moment she said that, Dvergar’s eyes opened wide. "And Ale? Will there be Ale?" "Yes, there will be." She said soft and gentle. "Oooh! Let us go destroy these ‘bandits’!’ he yelled enthusiastic about the thought of Ale when he returns. "Tend to the lady, Baladir, thank you. Set your camp up there and keep an eye out on her Kildaraen!" Nearis gave his orders to his retainers and took 3 Javelins with him.

The group made it to the cave Lhammaruntosz was talking about.

Nearis peered into the cave to see for anything suspicious. He noticed wet sand and about 5-ish footprints walking in. Strange enough, only 4-ish walked out. He heard panting coming out of the cave

As he walked in, he immediately sank 2 feet into quicksand. Dvergar moved towards the entrance of the cave to see what was happening, he noticed a bandit. The bandit was panting really hard. As Dvergar had full vision on a bandit within the cave, he jumped over the quicksand and rushed towards the bandit. Melody, seeing as how Nearis was sinking in the quicksand, rushed to his aid. Much to her will to save him, she only managed to tug his shirt with no effect at all. Dvergar, however had already engaged the enemy. He cast magic to protect himself and rushed into battle like a fierce lunatic, dodging several blows of the bandit and managing to hit the bandit himself. Meanwhile, Dustin has managed to help Nearis out of the quicksand, who was now sunken till his chest. Dustin immediately froze a piece of the quicksand. Meanwhile, bolts were flying next to them towards the bandit. The first one did, however, not really hit his target, but flying more over to Dvergar, who starts to look wary to Melody. Nearis threw a javelin at the bandit’s leg, crippling it. While the bandit was fighting off the pain, Dustin jumped next to Dvergar to kill the bandit.

While they were starting to relax, they heard a cricking sound from within the cave. It echoed all over the cave. Before they knew it, 2 spiders came forth. Dustin slammed one spider to the wall with a wave. As the beast was looking rough, Melody did find her aim on this shot and shot right between the beast’s eyes, killing it. Dvergar nearly being slain by the one beasts, managed to best the beast and smash it into a green goo that decorated the walls of the cave.

After further inspection, they noticed that the bandit they had slain was also stuck in the quicksand. This explained his panting, thought Nearis. There was nothing noticeable within this cave. The bandits must have taken shelter to whatever scared them, but seeing as how 1 of them was trapped, they immediately ran way.

When they returned back to the encampment that Baladir and Kildaraen had set up, they got the smell of food being cooked from the wagon.

Baladir, however, was not present at the camp. He came stumbling out of the wagon with a plate of finely cooked beef. As Dvergar and Melody rushed towards the table for food, Baladir dropped the plate. "Oh dear…oh dear…I…I am sorry lady Lhammaruntosz." Said Baladir. "Not to worry." Said Lhammaruntosz, "You may perform your little shuffling dance later to make up." She said smiling. In the meantime, Dvergar and Melody have already taken place and started drinking and eating from the food. Nearis was wary, as he had already noticed that there was no food within a 10 miles radius. Yet… here he stands, in front a buffet table with too much food. He motions Baladir to come over and asks "Baladir… where in God’s name did this food come from!" Baladir slowly drops his head. "I… I don’t know sir… I went to ask if she needed any assistance. She told me to get into the wagon… when I stepped outside, well…there was ‘this’. I just took the plate that was resting on a keg next to the wagon as she requested to the table." Nearis looked up to the buffet table, nodding at Lhammaruntosz and keeping an eye on the other 2. "Aren’t you going to join us?" Lhammaruntosz asked. "How rude of me." Said Nearis with a smile. He motions to his Squire and servant to follow. "Have a seat you two. Enjoy this meal" he said, seeing Melody and Dvergar stuffing their mouth with the food. Shocked, the two looked up. "We…We may join you?" asked Baladir shocked. "Of course! We haven’t eaten well for a while now! Enjoy." Without any notion, the two rushed to the table and started chewing on meat and stuffing themselves with Ale. Nearis sat down next to Lhammaruntosz and slowly started eating from the food. Dvergar and Melody already had their mouths stuffed with food while this all happened. Melody tried to eat as much as her little body allows her to eat and Dvergar… He had barely touched his food. Instead, he was chugging down on the kegs that were found underneath the table. He had already chugged down 1/4 of the keg before the others had joined! His thirst was that of a real dwarf!

Lhammaruntosz turned to the group. "Where is your friend? Where did he go?" At this point, Melody looked up. Her mouth still stuffed with food. The party had not noticed that Dustin was not present the entire time… Melody, however, assured that he was fine. "He went to pick some herbs nearby to heal his stomach ache!" she said quickly. "Oh? Well… as he is a doctor… this makes sense" Lhammaruntosz said thinking this over.

As the night passes and the food on the table diminishes, Melody, who has finished eating, plays a lovely tune on her Kalimba. Lhammaruntosz turns towards Nearis and Melody, "What is your purpose in Red Larch? Why are you ‘Adventuring’?" she asked. "As you have mentioned, we are but mere adventurers, seeking riches, seeing the world. We have no real means of adventuring other than these…" said Nearis. ‘’T’is true! We are just passing by, nothing really interesting." Melody confirmed. "Is that so? I thought our interests and destination were the same… Hoping we could help each other…" Lhammaruntosz answered. Dvergar dropped his, what seems to be almost empty, keg and with his half drunken voice he confronts Lhammaruntosz. "Look ‘ere lassie…. Ya seem ta kno’ who we are, aye…? Tell us, what are ya? [Burp]" "I am a protector…" she said. "A protector?" Nearis asked her curiously. "Yes, I am the protector of Cargo and Caravans… The symbol you see engraved here…." Pointing at the Holy symbol on the wagon. "Is my symbol. I will make sure that the merchant noble gets his caravan back."

Melody and Nearis both nod with understanding. "And what of ma book… ya seem to kno’ more about it!" Dvergar yelled. Lhammaruntosz looked towards Dvergar with Curious eyes. "I sensed a presence…." She said with a mysterious voice, as if her thoughts were elsewhere. "A presence of something bound to the book… or someone." Dvergar’s eyes opened wide. Even though half drunk, he was sure he heard her say that there is something or someone bound to the book. His natural curiosity and the magical pulse towards to book… He had to know what it meant. "Whaddaya mean? Tell me what you know of it!" "Unfortunately, my knowledge does not go beyond, not within those fields. Seek out Harburk Tuthmarillar in Red Larch. Harburk is the Cosntible and will be able to tell you more." Lhammaruntosz replied. Dvergar looked up and repeated the name to make sure he is able to remember it and went back to drinking. "Baladir, dear…" Lhammaruntosz looked towards the servant who was still chewing on a piece of meat. "Y-yes milady?" he said in a formal way. "Why don’t you do your little dance you always do?" she said smiling to him and turned her eyes towards Melody. Melody looked confused back for an instant. "Oh…OOOH… You want me to…" she said as she pointed at her Kalimba. "If you would be so kind" Lhammaruntosz said smiling. Melody picked up her Kalimba again and started playing a hearty tune as Baladir began to perform a weird shuffling dance. Neither Nearis, nor Melody seem surprised of what Dvergar had to say. "A protector you say? How do you ‘protect’ these caravans then? And how will you carry this caravan back to Gareth?" Nearis asked with a curious voice. "You may know me in another form…" she looked up while eating a piece of fruit. "A form…?" asked Melody. Lhammaruntosz looked at Melody. "Yes, young one, that of a dragon. I am sure you have heard of the songs about me?" she asked in an amused and joyful way. Melody’s and Nearis’ eyes opened wide. "A dragon?!" Melody yelled in excitement. "I do, I have heard of a song! Yes!" "Aaaah, t’is but a lie! Ain’t no [hic] dragons ‘round ‘ere [hic]…." Said Dvergar from behind his keg. "A dragon she says…" he mumbled to himself as he chugged an entire mug of Ale. Dvergar was not of this world anymore. He was quite drunk and unable to sit even straight. Though, his love for Ale kept him going until he could no more. As Lhammaruntosz, Melody and Nearis kept talking, it soon became very late. Nearis excused himself from the table and left the two women talk to each other as the dwarf kept chugging ale like there was no tomorrow. Meanwhile, Baladir was tending the provisions for the journey. Nearis picked up the Scimitar and motioned his squire to come over. He taught him how to wield one and they sparred a bit.

As the night darkened, Melody went to find a good spot to sleep. Lhammaruntosz and Nearis both noticed she is quite used to her size and weight as she found a good stone to sleep against to cover her from any sudden bursts in wind. As Melody went to sleep, so did Baladir and Kildaraen. Dvergar had passed out on the table with an empty keg or 2 in front of him. Not even a thunderous blast would wake him up. Nearis, however, stood guard. Lhammaruntosz, who was still eating, suddenly stood up "This was a good meal…" she sighed as she rubbed her stomach. Nearis only then noticed that Lhammaruntosz had eaten everything on the buffet table. "Well, time to bring this caravan back" she said smiling to Nearis.

As she did, her form started to flicker and sway. Her body slowly enlarged and her skin colour changed to a hue of bronze and scales started to appear. Her hands quickly burst out in claws and wings span out of her sides. Within mere seconds, this young, beautiful lady transformed into a dragon. Nearis stood up and awed at the sight of the dragon. "Holy mother of. [Gasp]" he gasped. Melody, who was not sound asleep, woke up. As she opened her eyes and saw the huge dragon in front of her, Lhammaruntosz flapped her wings. The sheer force of the wind pressed Melody against the stone she was up against. Both Baladir and Kildaraen covered their heads in fear. Nearis was forced to cover his eyes due to the force of the wind. Dvergar didn’t even flinch at any of these events. He was as sleep as a drunk dwarf could be. "A DRAGON!!!! OMG!!! A HUGE DRAGON!!!" screamed Melody with a huge excitement. "She said she was a dragon, SHEIS A DRAGON OMG, LOOK AT IT! Yes… Yes… this will make of a good song!! BUT OMG ICAN’T BELIEVE SHE IS A DRAGON!!!" she talked to herself as she gawked at the dragon. Lhammaruntosz winked at Nearis, flapped her wings once more as she slowly started to rise. With a gentle dive, she picked up the wagon with her claws and she flew away. The night passed quickly as the 4 of them couldn’t really sleep after seeing the dragon. Melody, who was still excited, kept talking to herself with a huge excitement in her eyes.

Llaramunthosz

 

"Along the Sword Coast
There are merchants and traders a'plenty.
One bronze lady though
Is unlike any merchant or trader you ever met!
Her caravans have a friend in the sky, Her ships fly the banner of the Scaly Eye! The Claws of the
Coast, The Mother Wyrm
Has treasures more than others, That she hides in a merchants coffers!"


From The ballad entitled 'The Scaly Eye' by The Bard,  Darkharp
 

View
Welcome to your campaign!
A blog for your campaign

Wondering how to get started? Here are a few tips:

1. Invite your players

Invite them with either their email address or their Obsidian Portal username.

2. Edit your home page

Make a few changes to the home page and give people an idea of what your campaign is about. That will let people know you’re serious and not just playing with the system.

3. Choose a theme

If you want to set a specific mood for your campaign, we have several backgrounds to choose from. Accentuate it by creating a top banner image.

4. Create some NPCs

Characters form the core of every campaign, so take a few minutes to list out the major NPCs in your campaign.

A quick tip: The “+” icon in the top right of every section is how to add a new item, whether it’s a new character or adventure log post, or anything else.

5. Write your first Adventure Log post

The adventure log is where you list the sessions and adventures your party has been on, but for now, we suggest doing a very light “story so far” post. Just give a brief overview of what the party has done up to this point. After each future session, create a new post detailing that night’s adventures.

One final tip: Don’t stress about making your Obsidian Portal campaign look perfect. Instead, just make it work for you and your group. If everyone is having fun, then you’re using Obsidian Portal exactly as it was designed, even if your adventure log isn’t always up to date or your characters don’t all have portrait pictures.

That’s it! The rest is up to your and your players.

View

I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.