Friday, January 8, 2010

Raells' return

Recap of recorded session #3-

This recap begins with our companions standing just outside of the cave they were previously exploring. Raell and Salem are both deceased while the remaining party members are all in poor health especially Luethar and Cor’Nal who are both badly wounded and completely out of magic. Devoid of healing potions also, the party finds that the now dark and cold wood they came through to reach the cave presents a very real threat to them on their return. After a short debate on whether to re-enter the cave and rest for a while or push on back to town before they can be attacked by the cave denizens again, the group opts for the latter choice and makes haste for they nearest path back to civilization.

Luckily the group manages to return to Tread Light and the safety of their rooms without incident. Knowing that at this late hour (around midnight) there is no hope of finding anybody to help resurrect Raell, the remains of the ranger are hidden in the wagon along with the owl bear heads and the group retires to their respective rooms to rest.

The following morning in a role reversal it is Ademar not Cor’Nal who awakes first and immediately begins corralling his companions to begin the day. Luethar grumbles about the early hour and declares that the meeting is “not necessary”. Despite the halflings indifference, Ademar pushes forward with questions about what to do about Raell and the options available if they can not resurrect him (remember that all but Raell are unwelcome in Black Rhett’s company). After few resolutions are made the elves head downstairs for a light morning meal while Luethar remains in his room, still not wanting to show any association with the often troublesome elves.

With breakfast out of the way the pair head out to the Temple of Myrrdin to see if the priests there will be able to bring Raell back to life. Once across the bridge they find themselves in front of the temple where they request to see an acolyte with knowledge of the deal made with Raell over resurrecting Ryan MacBrady. Before long they are shown inside where they speak with the priest in charge of the resurrection. He leads the elves into a chamber where they see an altar and the residual items from a ritual along with the, now living, Ryan MacBrady, sitting in a chair off to the side. He seems somewhat confused, as if the ritual was just completed only minutes ago. When Ademar hails him the look of confusion on Ryan’s face only deepens. The priest interjects attempting to explain that Ryan refused to return to his body but, during the ritual they found the bodiless soul of Raell who they brought back in place of the soul of Ryan. The world seems to come back into focus and the man who was once Ryan and now contains the soul of Raell speaks. He talks about how he was tricked by the priests into coming back by not mentioning that he would inhabit a body other than his own. Truly disgusted by his current state, Raell wishes only to gather his items and those of Ryan and be gone from the temple.

During this time Luethar goes to see Gaen Baliol in an attempt to identify a pair of bracers and perhaps buy some scrolls and other magic. Gaen welcomes the halfling in eager to see more coins in his purse. Luethar enters and states his business which gets the old man scurrying about gathering up spell components and, as a token of good intent, a dusty goblet which he half heartedly blows off and pours wine into. The halfling wrinkles his nose at it and leaves it sitting on the table. The bracers turn out to be Bracers of Armor +2. Just before leaving the tower, Luethar asks that if any elves should happen to come by looking to have an item identified that he charge 100 gold rather than 50. The mage agrees to this arrangement but in the future Luethar will pay 75 gold instead of 50.

After leaving the Temple of Myrrdin, Ademar goes to purchase arrows while Cor’Nal and Raell head off to take the half-elf corpse and that of Salem out to burn on a pyre. In doing this, Raell cuts off the hand of his previous body and has it preserved in a block of wax in the hopes that some day he will be able to return to his true form. The druid asks about Farkas Winslow and Raell tells him that he needs to be taken alive back to Eystlund although he would much rather kill the slaver than allow him to live. Cor’Nal shows Raell some toenail clippings he found and says that they are the key to finding the elusive dwarf with a scrying spell. The ranger is noticeably more upbeat after hearing the news and happy to hear that the elves will give him their full support. Cor’Nal states that he will attempt to scry the slaver the following morning.

Ademar makes his way to Gaen Baliols’ home in search of information on his bow. Gaen is caught off guard by seeing an elf so soon after his conversation with the halfling yet offers him some wine which so happens to be poured already. Gaen states that he is aware of this particular bow, it is called Est’Perolyne which means “Flame String”, it is of elven make and is very old, probably older than Ademars’ father. More than that is withheld as the old mage states that additional information is 50, errr, 100 gold. After some grumbling the rogue produces two gems and the mage continues. The bow has magic about it which increases damage dealt. Legend also has it that Est’Perolynes’ powers grow as those of its wielder grow, it’s presence can increase the users dexterity, increased accuracy, and faster rates of fire. The sage believes that many of these legends are just that. As Ademar is leaving Gaen nearly ruins his arrangement with the halfling by blurting out “Say hello to Luethar for me.” But, he recovers with a cleaver cover which deflects the elfs’ suspicion to some degree.

Once the corpses of the fallen are ash Cor’Nal returns to his room at Tread Light while Raell takes up the owlbear heads in a sack and makes his way to see Black Rhett. Once he arrives at The Longest Mile the ranger takes the opportunity to get himself cleaned up by purchasing a room and requesting a bath. While he’s at it, Raell also decides to make an attempt at spreading Ryan MacBradys’ seed as he believes Ryan was the last of his line, so he buys the services of one of Rhetts’ ladies also. This is all done on Ryans’ coin of course! Once he is feeling a bit cleaner and a little more civilized the ranger makes his way downstairs to find Flanders. Black Rhett is thoroughly disgusted by the leaking, stinking bag which Raell dumps on his desk (much to Raells’ delight). Raell proceeds to tell his tale including the circumstances of his unconventional resurrection. The old sailor finds the rangers’ story beyond believable and tells him that he will get his gold in five days time if no more livestock are lost (he has to be sure that the creatures killed were the creatures responsible), in the mean-time he may have another job for Raell and Rhett suggests that he remain available.

The following day, (day 8 in Henutsen) Luethar meets with Tink Beldin who says that he has some work for the halfling. A meeting is arranged between Tinks’ employer Kayzen Griggs and Luethar. Griggs gives the halfling a rundown of The Black Glove XIII which he makes out to be a sort of vigilante group who oppose The Old Salt and Baron Von Strom both. Kayzen tells Luethar of a woman who has come to the group looking for help. She says that her young boy has been molested by the Deccan of the church of Geedes and she has been ignored by the Sheriff and has no money to hire Rhett. Kayzen states that this Deccan, by the name of Jones needs to be dealt with and he will pay 750 gold for the job with 100 of that paid up front. Luethar is appalled by the story (quite a feat for the evil bastard) and quickly accepts the job.

Soon after, a chance meeting with Sherriff Throad occurs wherein he ‘reminds’ Ademar and Raell that everyone pays tithing’s to the Baron and they should report to the Baron when they get an opportunity. After Throad leaves, Ademar and Raell go to the temple of Myrrdin to speak to the Vicar about what he owes the church in exchange for his return to life. The Vicar tells Raell of a war brewing between the gods in which Myrrdin may see to unseat Oark as the high god of neutrality. If this comes to bear, the ranger may be needed by the church in their crusade against the followers of Oark. Raell states that he may be leaving the area soon to which the Vicar assures him that they will find him when the need arises, no matter where he may be.

While on the east side of town, Raell stops in to see Rhett and asks if he has any work. Rhett mentions that recent ale shipments to the town have been ambushed and it is hurting his business. He believes that a band of ogres are responsible. The fat bastard offers 200 gold up front and 250 upon completion. Raell takes the job and he and Ademar leave The Longest Mile. As the pair cross over to the west side of town the old man from Low Skye that Raell had paid for information on Farkas Winslow hails them. In hushed tones he tells Ademar that Farkas had left town for a time yet, he has returned and is now seeking information about those who are looking for him.

This day passes without further event. As dusk falls Luethar and Ademar slip out of the inn and make their way to the Temple of Geedes to complete the task put before the mage by Kayzen Griggs. Using his magic, Luethar alters his image to become a half-elven boy and takes on the name Oliver. Pretending to be a homeless child he attempts to befriend some of the children cleaning outside. After many attempts to gain admittance to the temple fail he is ultimately chased off by one of the acolytes. Luethar lingers near the church waiting until darkness falls and the children go home to their families. An unknown priest comes out to the street seeming to make sure all is in order for the night. Knowing that this will likely be his last chance to gain entry into the building, Luethar approaches the priest, and gives a grand, sobbing performance. After a minute of thought and a zone of truth spell, the priest (who reveals himself as Deccan Jones) admits the ‘boy’ through the front door and into the foyer. Through all of this, Ademar watches quietly from the shadows across the street.

Once the door closes behind the Luethar and the Deccan the rogue moves up close to the building concealing him-self in the shadows of a statue of Geedes. As soon as they are inside, Deccan Jones states that they need to get the young ‘lad’ out of those clothes. Luethar wastes no time, launching into a spell intended to charm the priest. The Deccan is unaffected by the spell and is immediately alerted that something is amiss. The halfling wins initiative (by 1) and hurls a color spray spell at his adversary. Again unaffected by Luethars’ magic the Deccan kicks out at him and catches only air as the halfling steps back. The mage counters by conjuring a scorching ray which hits the cleric full force. Robes scorched and smoking, the Geedes disciple calls upon his deity, healing his wounds in a red-grey glow. Another scorching ray is sent into Deccan Jones before Luethar steps back and draws his dagger. A few more quick exchanges take place, none of which do any damage before the Deccan lands an inflict critical wounds attack on Luethar which drains the halfling completely and leaves him laying unconscious on the foyer floor. Just as Luethar hits the floor, Ademar opens the door, sword drawn, to find his companion down and the Deccans’ back to him. Not wasting a perfect opportunity the rogue strikes with his blade in an upward jab which pushes his blade in the priests’ lower back and out of Jones’ chest. Wounded deeply but not yet dead, the holy man turns to this new aggressor and initiative is won by the rogue (by 1 again!) who gets off a full attack taking off Deccan Jones’ arm at the elbow and slashing his throat open with another swipe of his blade. The Deccan of the Church of Geedes falls into a pool of his own blood and dies while Ademar drags the halfling out of the building and administers a healing potion in hopes that he is not yet dead. Luethar comes to and both of them flee the scene leaving one of the halflings’ daggers and a wand of magic missiles behind. The town is soon in an uproar as the priests of the temple comb the area looking for a dirty half-elf boy. They never do find him.

The evening passes uneventfully and morning sees the entire group (a refreshing change after so many individual endeavors, and deaths) heading out to discover the source of Rhetts missing ale. After traveling most of the day down and away from the mountain, the company finds itself in front of a huge cave guarded by two ogres. These sentries are defeated after a short battle after which the companions conceal themselves outside the cave fearing that reinforcements may be on their way from inside. As if on cue two hill giants emerge from the cave, which are also defeated.

Still feeling pretty cock-sure the group loots their opponents and enters the cave. They begin to explore the complex which contains only empty chambers and dead ends, at first…