Blank's D&D Extravaganza

In Which The Party Arrives in Red Larch
Chapter One

The first adventurers to arrive in the town of Red Larch travel from the southern city of Waterdeep by way of a caravan. There they engage their surroundings by speaking with the locals and therein learn of the strange occurrences in and around the Sumber Hills.

Adran, the talented half-elf bard, meets with a scuttling human named Endrith Vallivoe. The two exchange pleasantries and confirm their allegiance to the Harpers. The secondhand store owner encourages them to find a place to rest for the night and points the way to the town inn. After reserving rooms at the Swinging Sword, Adran puts on a show in Red Larch’s local tavern known as the Helm at Highsun, while his escort, a young and rather attractive half-orc known as Tap, keeps watch from the bar. Many of the locals are put off by his performance save for one rather enthusiastic fan; a human named Geth Malwind who, despite his lack of coin, exuberantly discovers a newfound passion for Adran’s musical talents.

Near dusk, two more adventurers arrive along the eastern Larch Path. Though weary from travel, the dragonborn ranger Aurgros and his companion, a stern and brooding human paladin by the name of Garrick Fellblade, pay a visit to the All Faiths Shrine. There they are met by a follower of Tempus, a human named Imdarr Relvaunder who greets them as an ally to the Order of the Gauntlet, and kindly directs them toward food and lodging for the night. Eager for a meal, the two also make their way to the Helm near the center of town.

The halfling thief known as Papu, having kept to his own most of the journey from Waterdeep, investigates the bakery of Mangobarl Lorren wherein he discovers that Zhentarim allies are more secretive in their communications than he was prepared for. Not unaccustomed to sleeping outdoors, Papu elects to seek out a bale of hay on which to bed for the night, and sneaks into a small barn in town. In the morning, he discovers that he has been pickpocketed.

After a good night’s rest, the party, not yet fully formed, engage the owner and operator of the Swinging Sword, a human named Kaylessa Irkell. Upon inquiring for leads on the mysterious circumstances affecting the town, she graciously directs them to the town constable, Harburk Tuthmarillar, who confides that bandits have been known to roam well-traveled roads and attack traveling merchants. Eager for the thrill of adventure and driven by the need to exact justice, the paladin Garrick gathers fellow adventurers Aurgros, Papu, Tap, and Adran. Together at last, the party heads along the Cairn Road to face the dangers ahead…

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Looking For Trouble (AKA Loot)
Chapter Two

The party returns to Red Larch after defeating a small pack of bandits who were attacking unsuspecting travelers along the eastern road. Eager to lend their aid after an evening’s rest at the Swinging Sword, they uncover and pursue additional leads from various local sources who point them toward a mysterious and supposedly haunted tomb. To their surprise, the tomb’s entrance appears slightly ajar with just enough room for the halfling Papu to wedge himself inside. Papu discovers a makeshift alarm nestled just against the interior of the door, leading the ranger Aurgros to investigate the perimeter. Stealthily, the dragonborn discovers a meager camp of thieves eagerly awaiting any who dare to venture inside the tomb and trigger their “alarm”. Returning with this news, the party, boastful of their collective skill, elect to engage the thieves by deliberately triggering the trap and hiding nearby. Shortly thereafter, a half-ogre thug named Geeraugh and his goblin thief companion, Mougra, investigate on cue, only to meet their ignominious end at the hands of the ambushing party.

Inside the tomb, the party uncovers a small room with a stone block table at its center, and a rusted iron door further in. The table appears to have housed a number of small objects, all of which have been looted leaving only rusted imprints. Hopeful of more treasure within, the party attempts to open the rusted door, and are shocked to discover a spectral guard who warns them to leave its master in peace. Unfazed by its warning, the party refuses to abandon the tomb, causing the specter to attack wantonly. Though normal weapons appeared to have little effect on the creature, Tap’s wild magic and a scathing insult from the bard ended the specter’s watch as its form dissipated, forever plagued by its misery.

Weary from combat, the adventurers return to town and remark on their recent victories over a song (courtesy of Adran) and mugs of ale at the Helm. They take note of the disgruntled halfling lurking once again observing their every move from a quiet corner of the tavern. As they move in to engage, the halfling becomes unnervingly startled by the arrival of another patron, and hastily makes his retreat. Curious as to his motives, the party engage the patron, a fellow by the name of Illmeth Waelvur, who runs a nearby Wagonworks. He laughs off their questions as unremarkable and nothing to be concerned over. Identifying the party as adventurers, Waelvur offers a rumor of hidden treasure near Tricklerock Cave and entices them to investigate. After a good night’s rest, the party pay a visit to the cave, only to discover a pack of stirges awaiting them and no treasure or riches to be found…

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Secrets and Pride
Chapter Three

[This log is still under construction]

The party returns to Red Larch, soured by the false lure of hidden treasure. Frustrated, they begin to investigate more of the town, discovering from a Halfing named Stannor Thistlehair about the robed figures that make their way and seemingly disappear into Waelvur’s lot during the night. They also learn about nightly hauntings of the local quarries by “masked men” from workers of the town quarries. They speak with the foremen of each respective quarry (Dornen Finestone and Mellikho Stoneworks), both of whom try to shrug them off as pointless rumors and instead offer an alluring claim of hidden treasure near Tricklerock Cave. Infuriated by their reluctance and knowing what truly awaited them at the Cave, the party begin to tap other sources for information.

Mother Yalantha’s – there they meet Uther Whiteraven (laborer at Mellikho’s Stoneworks) and Mara Westwind (a laborer in the employ of Dornen Finestone). The party learns that a mutual friend to the two, Randal Buckman, knew of the peddler Valklondar, but had no additional information to offer.

The party waits until the evening to investigate Waelvur’s Wheelworks for signs of the mysterious “robed figures,” but a town watchman stumbles upon their investigation. Feigning drunken behavior, the guard ushers them back to the Swinging Sword to ensure they “sleep it off.”

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The Path of Vengeance
Chapter Four

[This log is still under construction… Once I remember what happened!]

The party licks their wounds by retreating back to Red Larch, rushing swiftly to the All Faiths Shrine in an effort to save the lifeless paladin. The priest laments his rather meager talents, and offers to help the party bury their fallen teammate, much to the team’s dissapointment. The next morning, they encounter the “researcher” Zachary who offers his aid and experience to the team. After burying their friend and seeing to his affairs, they return to the cave under Lance Rock to exact their revenge on the necromancer.

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Beneath The Surface
Chapter Five

The party has defeated the necromancer!

Aurgros scouts ahead, leading the party back to the Kheldell Path, and back east to Red Larch. They arrive well into the early morning, retiring to their rooms upon arrival.

Due to a recent surge in occupancy, Tap and Adran are forced to bunk together while Aurgros, Papu and Zachary share a room. When Adran awakes, he discovers that Tap is nowhere to be found. Weary and eager for a refreshing bath, the group pay a quick visit to Haeleeya’s. Papu leaves a number of his claimed pants for laundry service, while Haeleeya encourages Aurgros to speak with “Minny” Mandhyver while investigating the whereabouts of Kenton Valklandar. Adran is the first to leave the establishment and is immediately enticed by a noticeable gathering of locals moving toward the southern end of town, the party explore a local market in the southeast..

At the Market…

  • Papu encounters Grund, a rather simple half-orc who sells his own brined pickles in the market. Irritated by the way others treat the poor half-orc, Papu pickpockets a nearby merchant for stealing one of Grund’s pickles. When raising the issue of the strange events occurring about town, Grund is spooked and makes a swift departure. Papu pursues, keeping a low profile.
  • Adran delivers a stirring song about Garrick’s death, then sings about the defeat of Oreioth. His song is a delight to locals and traveling merchants, earning him an increased fan base and improving morale for Red Larch.
  • Zachary offers a captivating oratory to compliment Adran’s song recounting the necromancer’s defeat.
  • Mara Westwind warns Aurgros of Randal Buckman’s unexplained disappearance.

The party, minus Papu, pays a quick visit to Endrith Vallivoe who passes the black arrow, parchment, and skull to Zachary’s care for further research. On the subject of Valklandar, Endrith also points out that Minny has lived in town far longer than he, and the party heads across the road to investigate the lead.

Papu shadows Grund back to his home just behind the back lot for Waelvur’s Wheelworks. The half-orc hurries himself with stocking his market goods into the house, then rushes through the back entrance toward the Wheelworks lot. Papu gives chase as Grund leaps over a fence and disappears within the wood and metal debris. Papu tracks his movements which lead to a hidden cellar door just behind the Waelvur home, though the doors appear to be locked from the inside. Papu returns to Grund’s home where he uncovers a small piece of torn parchment bearing a strange symbol.

Minny explains that a group of elders have formed a group calling themselves Believers, and have been instrumental in weeding out, harassing, and even killing undesirables in the town over the past couple years. This began upon discovering a series of tunnels burrowed just beneath Red Larch. She suspects that they may have hired bandits to scare off potential threats. Worried that the Believers may retaliate against her home and family for warning the adventurers of their scheme, she hastily shoos them from her home.

As the team discuss and analyze what they’ve learned, they are interrupted by a sudden tremor that shakes the entire town. Near the center of town, a large sinkhole collapses, swallowing some unfortunate children who were playing nearby on an old cart. The party then rushes to the aid of a frightened town as dusk slowly fades beyond the distant hills…

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The Moving Stones
Chapter Six

Albaeri Mellikho, owner of the Mellikho Stoneworks, and Ulhro Luruth, a local tanner, try to control the frantic crowd of locals who have steadily gathered around the decaying sinkhole. Cries of “Someone do something!” and “A rope!” are heard amongst the crowd. Despite their efforts, Mellikho and Luruth’s attempts to divert attention away from the pit below go unheeded.

As the party looks on, Tap arrives on the scene curious to learn what may have caused the tremors. The party gets their first glimpse at a strange swirling tattoo appearing on Tap’s bare chest. Adran identifies an odd pulsing behavior to the tattoo, while Zachary hastily scrawls notes on the phenomenon before returning to the matter at hand.

Reunited, the adventurers investigate the commotion with Aurgros taking the lead. Sidling close to the edge, a portion of the earth nearly gives way beneath him. He leaps aside before falling into the pit below. Mara Westwind forces her way through the crowd and offers a rope by which to climb down and aid the fallen children. The party agree with her rescue plan, and Zachary leaves the Driftglobe in Aurgros’s care. With the help of additional townsfolk, Mara ties one end of the rope around Aurgros’s waist, lowering him into the depths.

Zachary, meanwhile, keeps a close watch on Albaeri, taking keen note of her physical and vocal mannerisms, while Aurgros reaches the bottom of the pit. Just as his feet find the floor below, Papu grabs hold of the taught rope and slides down. Aurgros activates the Driftglobe, then focuses his efforts on tying the rope to one of the children so that they can be hoisted up to the surface. Papu, meanwhile, attempts indulge his curiosity by exploring what dark regions of the sinkhole he can uncover, but lack of a light source swiftly returns him to Aurgros’s side.

Once the first child is returned to the surface, he is embraced and carried off by his loving parents. Tap places a subtle light spell on Adran’s backpack, who is subsequently lowered into the sinkhole. The rescue continues with the hoisting of another child from the pit, and Zachary is now the next to be lowered.

After the final child reaches the surface, Tap takes hold of the rope and begins to climb down without being tied to the end and lowered by Mara and her volunteers. As he prepares for his descent, he catches sight of Albaeri Mellikho motioning to Luruth, who proceeds to sink into the crowd. In a moment of distraction, Tap loses his grip on the rope and plummets into the soft mound of dirt collected directly beneath the pit’s open maw.

Aided by additional light sources, the party begins to explore their surroundings and find a natural cave with a passageway leading northward and a stone doorway to the east. Near the eastern door lie four dusted cloaks, which Aurgros, Tap, and Adran don, though the fourth is too large to fit Papu. Once through the doorway, Zachary casts a disguise self spell to gain the near-uncanny appearance of Albaeri Mellikho.

Descending down a long stone stairway, the party discovers Dwarven stone sentinels posted alongside a evened-out pathway leading eastward. Papu, concerned over the potential for traps, investigates the sentinels, uncovering hidden pathways directly behind each one. The party elects to follow the northern secret path, ignoring the straighter path leading further to the east. The pathway itself is quite narrow and rough along its rocky walls, but leads to an open square room. In a corner of the room, they find a pile of rotting corpses with much of the flesh torn away. While investigating the bodies they aggravate several giant rats who swarm and attack. Dispatching the vermin, the party proceeds with their investigation. Several of the older bodies appear human, while a more recent corpse suggests a halfling or someone of small stature. Each skull also bears a symbol that was carved into the forehead, which Papu identifies as the mark found scrawled on a piece of scorched parchment in Grund’s home. In an opposite corner lie several articles of clothing and aged mining equipment. Amongst the refuse, Papu also identifies a leather-bound journal embossed with the moniker “KV.”

The party proceeds through an adjacent passageway that connects to another open square room where a small boulder appears to be hovering in the center. Perplexed, Zachary gathers more notes while the others debate over its significance. Papu, unfazed by the spectacle, experiments by moving the boulder from its original position. After a few choice movements, the party surmises that some force is managing to suspend the rock within a 10-foot radius from the center of the room, and proceed onward, satisfied with their findings.

A southern connecting passageway leads the group to another stone door. The party cautiously makes their way into a much larger room containing the statue of another Dwarven sentinel stationed atop a pedestal at the room’s center, as well as several small valuables lying at its feet. Before the party has a chance to investigate more thoroughly, a group led by Elak Dornan don stone masks and announce themselves as the Bringers of Woe. As they ready for an attack, they are shocked to discover Zachary disguised as Albaeri Mellikho among their ranks. Uncertain of her motives, demand that she deliver “the signal” before lowering their weapons. “Albaeri” acquiesces by motioning toward Dornen as if readying to offer the “signal” he requested, but instead unleashes a brutal eldritch blast delivering a near-fatal blow and tearing away his stone mask.

Combat ensues, and the party is victorious, though one member of the Bringers manages to flee, escaping back along the northern path. The party recovers and proceeds to inspect the room and the stone statue. Using his knowledge of the arcane, Zachary reveals that the statue is in fact the petrified remains of an ancient Dwarf, now long since dead and far beyond repair. The party also lay claim to a selection of gems and gold laid at the dwarf’s feet, while Papu receives a sacrificial dagger that bears the word “Reszur” on its hilt.

Tap, meanwhile, catches the faint sound of someone calling for help in an adjacent chamber to the west, sealed by another stone doorway. The party investigates and finds a tall stone monolith standing at the center of another large room. At the foot of the monolith lay a disheveled human male sprawled on his belly and held in place with large boulders positioned atop each of his limbs. Rescuing the man, he identifies himself as Randal Buckman, a stonecutter for Dornen Finestone who was kidnapped by the Believers and being prepared for sacrifice. As the party administers aid in the form of a healing spell and water, he reveals the tale of the Believers that he uncovered and identifies several town elders by name. He also reveals that the half-orc Grund served as a guard whose duty was to allow safe passage to any who called out “A Believer approaches,” and capture any who failed to deliver the signal by triggering a trap consisting of several steel cages suspended above the passageway. When he overheard the commotion in the eastern room, he abandoned his post and fled toward the cave where the party had first arrived.

While still quite exhausted from starvation, Buckman offers to stand guard and try to capture any remaining Believers who try to dispatch the adventurers. Papu leaves Buckman with one of his daggers in case of danger, and the party resumes their investigation. Returning to the larger path with the petrified dwarf, the group enters through another doorway to discover a small entryway, and another Believer who was trying to flee. Identifying himself as Baragustan(?), he pleads for the adventurers to spare his life and admits that he was only following the commands of an “earth priest” known as Larrakh. He buckles from the party’s questioning, and grovels at their feet not to disturb “the delvers” in the room beyond. With few details remaining to them, the party hog ties Baragustan (?) and leave him in the entryway, entering through the eastern doorway.

They party uncovers a vast darkened tomb containing several massive stones in various configurations about the room. Lined along the walls are stone alters bearing the remains of ancient figures. Before the party can investigate in greater detail, the priest Larrakh engages the party, warning of their imminent defeat at the hands of the Cult of Black Earth. The party advances to attack, only to find their movements slowed by the priest who rushes toward the southern wall. Tap breaks free of the spell and attempts to impede the priest’s departure, with Augros close behind. Delivering a volley of arrows and spells, the two try their best to assault the priest while the other party members struggle against the spell’s effects, only to discover that the priest’s defenses were more than they bargained for. Finally free, the rest of the party rush to engage the priest, but not before he reaches his goal. Larrakh triggers a mechanism in the wall and departs through a secret passageway, unleashing a rockslide to block his escape…

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[Placeholder]
Chapter 7

To be completed after our next game.

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Aurgro's Journal Entry 02
OMG Gryphons!

Oh sweet sweet beautiful Bahaumut! Gryphons! I’ve only heard of them before! This is amazing!

… Okay… Okay gotta get a hold of myself… Lets start from the beginning. There has been a lot so I might miss a few details here and there.

After leaving Red Larch on the only clue we could come across, we started making our way toward a spot where there have been reports of a few freshly dug graves in the Somber Hills. In light of recent activities with people we now know as some kind of elemental cult calling themselves The Elemental Eye. Looking through the graves we found a Male Dwarf and a female human, both with the mark of Mirabar on their clothes. I guess we can say that we found the missing traveling company from Mirabar…. shit… We also found a member of that cult we dealt with before and someone else… odd white cloak adorned with raven feathers. I’m not sure what to make of it. Could be another faction of the cult…. if for sure means more trouble.

Aracawkrin… man… I’m getting a lot of firsts here. I wasn’t even sure these people existed until last night. Wow… I have to admit. I was a little nervous… Things were getting a little heated there. I didn’t want to fight them…. Good thing all they wanted was some healing potions. Though I’m sure Papu will miss his…. stale cheese bread…. bleh… Weird little half-ling. As it turns out they are also fighting against the Elemental Eye… It’s nice to know we have allies…. sort of… They seem to like keeping to themselves. Explains why I’ve only heard of them in stories. This Elemental Eye problem is proving to be a bit bigger than some cultists out in a middle of nowhere town. This is getting dangerous.

Oh yeah. Speaking of danger. Fucking Owlbears! Two of them. Attacked us in the freaking crack of dawn. I would still be buzzing from that if it wasn’t for what I’m about to tell you next. Kayna is never going to believe that I started a day being attacked by owlbears and now ending it on a night ride hunt on the backs of gryphons. Fucking sweet!

Backing up a bit, after the owlbear attack we started heading towards this tower in the middle of the singing valley. Turns out the tower called Feather Gail Spire is owned by a bunch of rich aristocrats who call themselves “The Knights of Water Deep”. Fitting since most of them come from Water Deep. Apparently this is their hobby… rich people…

Anyway they have invited us into their homes and we are getting ready to have a big feast… what is it for, I’m not sure. But if things go well. I might be able ride a gryphon! Hmm…. I think I’ll go take a look at their stables before dinner….. I hope Shadow is doing okay… I better go get him too…

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