The Age of Awakening

Adventure 21: The Library of the Lost

Nox and Lel talked to the two remaining warforged, Axe and Sword, and with their help aided McGwyver in activating and guiding the huge warforged called Seige outside of Akkadia. Heading east towards the rumored spot of a discovered piece of etherium, they encountered a contigent of soldiers from Sarta led by Captain Oliver Simmastri. An agreement was reached through subtle intimidation and the Sarteans allowed Seige to remove the etherium with the understanding that it was for a good cause. 

Seige carried the large piece of etherium slowly back to Portalis, where it was installed in the tower replacing the town's shattered piece. The broken etherium was collected and sent to Fallheim for defense along with Seige. 

Oryn, Fargrim, and Teadora joined with them as they all traveled to Lesandria and into the old city ruins where they discovered the recently excavated ruins with "Library of Alexandren" inscribed on the stone entranceway. Inside the party found Istarya slightly distraught and spaced out with a large stone basin on the floor that produced a visage of his long-lost sister, Istarkoi. The library appeared to have suffered a disastrous fire and nearly all of the material was lost. 

The prophet's visage informed the party of a number of things, including hints that there was a fourth wizard of the archfey that even Istarya did not know about. Istarya also revealed that when he found the temple it had seemingly already been discovered and he captured a lone spider scurrying away from the Istarkoi artifact. 

Investigating the next place in the ruins they knew about, the party discovered the hidden tower of Caillus in the ruins with swirling clouds gathering overhead. Climbing straight to the top, the party discovered the deranged cleric arguing with a young white dragon and got the drop on him. Caillus was quickly cut down, even after a grotesque transformation into a demon-like creature, as the white dragon watched and then calmly took its leave. 

There at the top of the tower the party found Caillus' dark ritual components, two more of the elder eye stones that he was seemingly channeling the etherium energy into. Following the strange guidance of the voice in his and Istarya's heads, Lel used his ooze familiar Shmee to dissolve the two stones found there and the third they'd been carrying around from under Castle Artegia. The threat to Portalis and many towns in the region had finally been dealt with.

Upon the destruction of the Artegia elder eye stone a humanoid form appeared, an illithid dressed in nice clothing greeted the party. Lel charged at it only to be stopped by some unseen force, as the stranger introduced himself as Larumenian and informed them that a greater threat was on the horizon. The psion showed them visions of black sailed ships landing all along the eastern coast of Einland as strange invaders disembarked and spread across the land. The Empire of Serathis and League of Sarta seemingly welcoming these invaders as other towns and nations were forcefully occupied. 

The party agreed that laying low would be a wise decision, and Larumenian opened a portal for them to return to Castle Artegia and hide for a time.

2,000gp each to Lel, Nox, and Oryn
800gp – Fargrim

Adventure 20: Found in Akkadia

While resting in Castle Artegia Lel, Nox, and Oryn began to feel dizzy and strange, as if their bodies were being pulled away from them. After a few brief moments of disorientation they found themselves in an entirely different place – an old dwarven stone room atop a strange magical circle of runes with blood spilled upon it. It seemed that each of their blood had been spilled on the magic circle, with no signs of anyone nearby.

Exploring the old ruins the trio discovered groups of dead tarturian dwarves and seemingly trapped rooms connected by trapped hallways. After exploring some more they discovered another group of tarturians and fled from them, attempting to lock them out of getting further into the ruins. Fleeing down a long corridor, the group discovered a long forgotten tomb lined with bodies and after disturbing some of the tombs were assaulted by tour terrifying tomb guardian skeletons, each with four arms and four slashing scimitars. 

Fleeing the tomb and its deadly guardians, the trio soon discovered that the other group of tarturians was actually an expedition led by McGwyver, who had in his haste to flee an enemy accidentally spilt blood samples he'd taken from each of the characters onto the magical circle of summoning and caused them to be teleported to this area, ruins deep within the old city known as Akkadia. McGwyver was helping Barnum Bailey as they followed notes in Mercedes' journal to help find a long lost stash of weapons hidden in the ruins of Akkadia.

Venturing deeper into the ruins, the group discovered a large room containing seven eerily lifelike statues and one huge statue in the center. Oryn found an old store room filled with rusted and useless old weapons, and inadvertently activated some sort of power source deep below the ruins. All of the statues, medium and huge, animated as long missing warforged. Five of the warforged quickly exitted the ruins for unknown locations, while two named Axe and Sword remained to talk to the adventurers and help them in calming the huge warforged called Seige. 


Adventure 19: Modra's Hideout

After interrogating the Half-Elf and Ruffian prisoners at the temple Teadora, Lel, Fargrim, and Oryn discovered that their boss was none other than the now deceased Modra. The prisoners revealed the directions to a secret sewer passage to a hideout of Modra's within the Narrows district of Lesandria. While Istarya had disappeared in search of the mysterious Library the ruffians had mentinoed, and McGwyver had left for Sarta to aid his friend Barnum, the four adventurers journeyed into the sewer.

Oryn wildshaped into a raven and scouted around the stench filled tunnels by Teadora's torchlight, the group discovered a large underground room with a spinning pool of sewer water in the middle. Floating in the water was a naked female half-elf showing some signs of life, and a pair of chitinous Chuuls nearby. Lel jumped to action and used his telekinetic leap to pull the woman to safety for Teadora to heal her, the rest engaged the aberrant Chuuls, but they all soon discovered the woman's skin peeling off and an unwholesome smell coming from her as the Bog Hag sprang to attack with her vicious claws.

The fight escalated as a huge Feymire Crocodile burst out from the water, was scared back underwater by Teadora's Cause Fear spell, and then attacked and swallowed Fargrim whole. While being slowly digested Fargrim managed a heroic strike with his craghammer and caused the crocodile to vomit him up. Further into the sewers the party found a ladder leading to an upper level and a closed store room. Inside the store room they found various supplies, a locked and magically trapped chest, and a stairway to the upper level. Lel could sense numerous Spell-scarred entities on the level above of varying degrees of strength.

Heading up the stairs they discovered a stone and wood frame room with seven tables spread across the floor each with a body on it, and various benches covered in equipment and alchemical lab equipment around the walls. The center table held a strapped down, very badly spell-scarred githyanki looking near to death, while the other tables each held a strange looking human in ragged clothing of a bizarre style and make. The stranger's equipment around the benches appeared to be of unknown origin, with armor and weapons all bearing strange avian themed carvings and symbols – some primal, some arcane, but nothing divine in meaning or origin.

In a pile of the equipment Lel discovered a rolled up piece of fabric that was a similar banner to that of the heralds of Serathis only of a different craftsmanship. The githyanki was revived and identified as Lel's missing mentor Merzim, who had been traded as a slave to Lesandria from the slave pens of Umbraforge. Lel also sensed that while himself and Merzim emanated spell-scar energy as a disease, the strangers seemed to emanate it to a lesser extent almost as if they were born with it. Teadora and Fargrim manged to revive two of the strangers, the first appeared to be a half-elf but shared no mannerisms or abilities of the race and the second appearing to be human, both of which had strange tattoos across their bodies and spoke in an unknown language that only Teadora could understand any of by speaking to them in the astral language Supernal.

Above where Merzim was strapped to the table was a large apparatus connected to a glowing blue crystal that seemed to be infused with most of the githyanki's spell-scar energy. Lel's ooze familiar, Shmee, absorbed some of the energy and gave it back to Merzim. When questioned about where they came from, the stranger mentioned coming across the sea on a ship and being kidnapped by the cultists. The two revived strangers ventured out of the room and to a room full of large, seemingly empty cages. It quickly became apparent that some sort of large creatures were in fact inside the cages as the strangers opened the gates, as one of the creatures exited its shoulder bumped part of the cage causing it to become visible briefly, appearing as a large lizard-like creature with broad shoulders, a scaled frill and tendrils coming from the back of its head, a beak, and very familiar looking claws exactly like the ones found in the merchant's cart and the inn of Fallheim.

The strangers identified the creatures by the name Lorthenx, the same creature depicted in their banner and the banner of Serathis, with the ability to turn invisible and make its rider invisible also. The two strangers mounted the beasts, freed the one remaining beast, and invisibly fled out of the building. The unmounted beast could be heard tearing through the rest of the residence, tearing cultists to pieces and then fleeing into the city as well. The location was a nondescript house in the Narrows district of Lesandria, with back alley and underground connections to many warehouses and hideouts across the district.

In a room upstairs the party discovered Modra's hideout filled with notes and journals, most notably a map indicating a specific location within the ruins of Lesandria that is most likely the Library that is alluded to in many of his notes. In addition Modra's notes reference finding the strangers forming numerous raiding parties attacking towns east of Fallheim.

Gems worth 400gp
Gems worth 1,000gp
Periapt of Recovery +2 

Adventure 18: Journey to Lesandria

Bulkan appeared to be a town completely reduced to ashes and rubble, led by the Bulkan native Saliveri the party began investigating what happened in the town. Up in the sky they spotted a flying object which decended and crashed into the ground not far away with a loud metallic thud, it was an 0W1-bot messenger machine created by Barnum Bailey with a message for McGwyver. The message requested McGwyver's presence and help in the League of Sarta with problems relating to the region of Akkadia.

Continuing to explore the ruins of Bulkan, the party discovered an uncovered old temple from the time of the Nerath empire, and inside they found a group of insane angels still guarding the ruins and seemingly a missing object. The archangel leading the group of immortal servants subdued Lel and attempted to steal his glove that contained the Elder Eye stone, but was stopped by the party as all of the angels were reduced to dust and armor. Teadora discovered an old backpack, under years of dust, that contained the notes and journals of a Sartean cleric named Caillus and his travels from Ashcroft to Bulkan, along with 100 pieces of old Sartean gold stamped with the likeness of the old emporer.

After emerging from the old temple, the party found the Tarturian diplomats ready to leave the town. They were left to walk the several day journey towards the main city of Lesandria. Oryn quickly noticed the party was being pursued by a seemingly intelligent rat, set a trap, and discovered the rat to be the were-rat Lester Fizzwizzle. Lester offered to help lead the party into Lesandria and show them where Modra's hideout was located.

Staying at a temple in the city, with Lester's hep the party set up a meeting with an Elf mobster in charge of Modra's operations in the Narrows part of the city. Istarya, Cyrra, and Oryn disguised themselves and met with the Elf, while Fargrim and Teadora stayed at a nearby inn and waited. After helping out with some of the warehouse work, Istarya disguised as a one-eyed ruffian and Oryn as his raven pet, the three were led to the back of a tavern where they were to help capture or kill Fargrim and Teadora. A full scale tavern brawl broke out, as more cultists and mobsters outside tossed flaming bombs into the bar and caught the whole building on fire. 

Escaping through the back door, with the help of Teadora causing fear in an ogre, the party fled back to the temple with some ruffian captives that could help them find the way into Modra's hideout.

100gp in Sartean Gold

Adventure 17: The Aftermath

Interrogating the injured Modra after the massacre led to few answers, but it did provide the party with a map to his hidden hideout in the city of Lesandria. Seeking more answers, the party rummaged through Harlin's possessions and found many notes referencing activity in Lesandria, Fallheim, and Portalis. He seemed to be apprenticed to a mysterious priest named Caillus who had orchestrated everything that had happened leading up to the draining of etherium in the nearby towns.

Suddenly without the protection of etherium, the western edge of Portalis found itself under seige from a large group of the bile spider goblins led by a goblin boss mounted on a vicious manticore. After a rough fight with the goblins, the party decided to venture towards the city of Lesandria and bought a ride with the Tarturian diplomats on their airship to the supposedly destroyed town of Bulkan. 


Adventure 16: The Full Moon Massacre, Part 2

The party finished the interrogation of the dwarven imposter diplomat, ending with him being executed by Nox. They also questioned some of the diplomats from Sarta, who afterwards requested that the party help him rescue Mercedes Cogwheel from the Tarturian airship. The party refused to get involved.

Investigating the other drop box locations around town that were revealed to them by the imposter, the party is interrupted by one of the Rusva'elen elves saying that they were in trouble at the Temple of Time beneath Portalis. Rushing to their aid, the party found the portal bursting forth around Istarya's wards with black, smokey tentacles thrashing about and creating black oozes. At the center of the chaos was one of the Tiefling bloodhunters, Parnyn, seemingly working with the oozes and tentacles. One tentacle secured itself around the treasure chest that contained the Elemental Eye stone and began dragging it towards the portal. The party quickly discovered that touching one of the black tentacles separated their minds from their bodies and placed them in a mental prison resembling a small, moldy stone room with an eye supported by sinewy stalks in the center and a probing voice of madness. 

After escaping the mental prisons, defeating the Tiefling, and re-sealing the portal the party took the Elemental Eye stone to Paelias. He revealed to the party through some of his salvaged ancient texts that it appeared what they were dealing with was an entity known as the Chained God, whose symbol Rex Trawkus had found on the doppleganger a month before. The Elemental Eyes seem linked to this being in some way. Paelias also urged the party to investigate the etherium tower in town as its defenses had been attacked previously by the goblins and he believed there was a link between the goblins and the cultists and tieflings.

With a full moon hanging midsky, the party entered the etherium tower to find at the top Harlin, the merchant's assistant who drew them a map to a kruthik trap, alive and performing an ancient arcane ritual that seemed to be effecting the town's etherium. At his side were Modra and the two other teifling bloodhunters, and below his raised platform were McGwyver, Mercedes, and several of the diplomats chained to the walls with demons watching over them. More and more demons began to pour out from the center of the tower, beneath the etherium, as Harlin rushed to complete his ritual. The party managed to disrupt the ritual, killing Harlin as the Tieflings fled, and saving McGwyver but at the cost of Mercedes and several of the others being town asunder by ravaging demons.

The etherium that had been protecting Portalis for years was half drained by Harlin's ritual, and shattered to pieces leaving numerous shards of inert and still active etherium.

3,700gp (740gp each)

Adventure 15: The Full Moon Massacre

After rescuing Paelias from his tower, and burning his tower down, the party was invited to a dinner with Maxentius where he filled them in on some of the politics in Portalis lately. He mentioned that the tiefling hunters he'd hired earlier to find the missing owls were also suspected of being involved in many of the bad things around town and that implicated him as also being involved. 

The dinner was interrupted by a loud sound from upstairs in Maxentius' house, the party rushed upstairs only to find his son Lursk had been kidnapped out an open window by a dark figure running along the rooftops. Istarya, Lel, Nox, Fargrim, Oryn and Teadora all made chase through the town eventually stopping the figure outside of a warehouse. They discovered the figure was a transformed were-rat who easily surrendered the young dragonborn but seemed distraught about something. 

Eventually they discovered that the were-rat was Lester Fizzwizzle and that he'd kidnapped Lursk in a last-minute attempt to save the boy and distract his would-be kidnappers. The party quickly rushed back to Maxentius' house in time to stop a shadowy figure from killing him, only to recognize the shadowy form as Modra the dark creeper. After a short fight, Modra conjured a zone of darkness to flee but was surprised along with everyone else (including Maxentius) when Lursk pulled out a wand and blasted Modra back against a building. The dark creeper faded into the shadows and fled, leaving a trail similar to the one that was left when the merchant Samuel Tindell and his assistant Harlin were found dead in their cells.

Istarya and the party were able to follow Modra's trail to the center of town but could not determine exactly where it went. Looking for clues, and following Lester's information, the party searched Samuel's cart and found a drop box with a series of letters in it. One letter was addressed to the tiefling hunter named Parnyn, asking him to follow "the heroes" to Fallheim, to meet up with some gnolls there, and to assist Modra in any way necessary. Another of the letters outlined seemingly future plans to attack or kidnap the Sartean and Tarturian diplomats during their meetings in Portalis.

In the center of town the party met up with the diplomats during their meetings and negotiated for them to stay the night hidden in their rooms. After an uneventful night the party was allowed to sit in on the diplomatic meetings and were shocked when things escalated and the Tarturians brought in the captive Mercedes Cogwheel, who they claimed was acting as a spy for the League of Sarta. As tensions rose, a strange multi-colored glow eminated from a box below the table and the windows shattered as three genasi soldiers on hippogryphs burst into the meeting. 

During the battle it became clear that some of the Tarturian diplomats were imposters, all but one of them managed to escape. It also became clear that the genasi and hippogryphs were attempting to kidnap the diplomats, but thankfully the party stopped them.

550xp+710xp (1,260xp)

1,360gp (272gp each)


Between Game Actions:

Just after the chaos of the fight…

Nox: Still succumbed to the rage I walk over snatch the dwarf by the throat and slam him into the wall. Leaning in close with saliva still dripping from my teeth and covered in blood, "Who are you working for?" making sure some spit splatters on to his face as I yell. Some of the Lesandrian Guards move to try and pull Nox off of the diplomat, but they are quickly informed by the assembled party of the situation and back off a little.

The Dwarf looks visibly frightened and disgusted, "I…work for Tarturia. I'm a diplomat!" Istarya steps up after putting the mysterious box under his arm. "Then why would you not keep your beard braided in the traditional fashion? Your manners also are unbecoming a diplomat, and we have evidence that suggests someone on the inside knew an attack was coming." The impostor diplomat begins to visibly shake and sweat, he stammers out a series of excuses, "I…was nervous this morning, braided me beard backwards! I was scared by the windows shattering! Everything happened so fast!" (no insight checks are needed to tell that he is not being entirely truthful) "Guards! How can you let them assault me like this?!" he cries with a hand stretched out towards the nearby Lesandrian guards going about cleaning up the room and removing the dead and injured. Nox squeezes just a little tighter and growls out, "Answer the questions or things will get quite uncomfortable for you…"

The diplomat squeals louder, three of the Lesandrian guards stop what they were doing and approach, one points at Nox, "Hey! Put him down and let us get him into a holding cell, we don't need any more blood spilled this day."

Lel: "Perhaps we should take him to the temple. I interrogated Klar using a technique I was shown there. There is a ritual which will make it harder for him to lie to us."

Nox: "But breaking bones can be so much more delightful," giving the evil eye to the dwarf. I grab the dwarf's hand and crush it. "Next time the injury won't be as easily fixed by the clerics, I suggest you start answering our questions."

"AUGH!" the dwarf lets out a gutteral cry as he hangs by his arm from the hobgoblin's grasp. "I already told you! I'm a diplomat from Tarturia! What more do you people want?" At the same time the three Lesandrian guards surround Nox and the diplomat, the one who spoke before addresses Nox, "If you do not put him down and cease this assault, Goblin, we will be forced to arrest you. Be sure that we will not hesitate to cart you back to the city to stew in the Lesandrian prison; I assure you it is far worse than anything you've seen around these parts."

The dwarf continues to whine and whimper in Nox's grip. Nox: "Don't lie to me dwarf, who are you working for? As pointed out before you are an imposter in their midst."

Lel addresses the guards: "Let us handle this. Where were you while those you were sworn to protect were threatened? We will take him to the temple. You may each send a representative to observe and assist in the questioning."

Whispered to Nox, "We will find more with more information. Patience."

Istarya shakes his head and steps forth. "My friends here get a bit grouchy when impostor diplomats let Genasi attack an important delegation. If you notice there are several of these diplomats not in the proper fashion for their station," Istarya pauses to make a motion on his chin indicating a beard, "and that leads us to believe that these are the ones responsible. Though this appears to have been the only one to, umm, survive the carnage, so getting information out of him as soon as possible is vital in case there is another attack."

Squeezing a little harder on the dwarf's throat. "Today is your lucky day and a sad day for me, as you get to live for now and in one piece." releasing his grip and dropping the dwarf to the ground. Nox turns and walks away pushing the guards to the side to stand next to the rest of the group. "Lel he is yours for now. But rest assured if your methods does not work I will break him, hobgoblins have their ways as well."

The guards brush off the comments and allow you guys to peacefully take the dwarf into custody. You may take him to the town Temple or wherever you like, but both the Tarturian and Sartean diplomatic parties request a member to be present during the questioning as Lel offered. The dwarf seems happy to be out of Nox's grasp but generally quiet and downtrodden.

We will take him to the temple. Ask for their help in casting a ritual of truth or whatever that thing is I paid for before. We may also want to bring Maxentius, Lester (secretly), and Paelias in to observe and provide any insight they may have. Perhaps those sneaky tricksy elves. Whoever has the highest insight/diplomacy should probably use the actual ritual (probably Istarya). Then we can question him and know when he is lying. I will point out (outside of the prisoner's ability to hear us) that this will only work as long as he talks. If he stops talking then the ritual is useless so we must keep him talking.

List of questions to ask, please add more questions to the list, I'm purposely leaving it empty to let people add stuff:
1. What does the box do?
2. Who do you work for?
3. Who you really work for?
4. No seriously, who do oyu work for before Nox chews your dangly bits off?
5. Who are your contacts? (Nox)
6. How are you reaching your contacts? (Nox)

Father Jaelin provides you with an isolated back room to place the Impostor Diplomat in, it is actually an ancient interrogation chamber that looks as if it hasn't been widely used for well over 50 years. (think like those surgery observation rooms, but mostly stone and medieval with wooden seats) The lighting is such that a large group can observe the lower area's events without being seen by the people in that lower area.

Lel – The same as before you may purchase a scroll with the Discern Lies ritual for 300gp, it allows the user to add their religion check result (as in the d20 + religion = bonus to insight). Conversely, you may donate money to the church and Father Jaelin will perform the ritual for you at a cost of 140gp, but he uses the ritual on himself adding to his insight checks (and thus will need to be present during the interrogation). – all of this assuming someone in the party doesn't know the Discern Lies ritual, which I don't believe anyone does. Discern Lies takes 10 minutes to cast and lasts for 5 minutes (the scroll takes less time to cast I believe).

Maxentius would rather stay with his son in the guarded safety of their house, and I actually don't remember where you guys left Lester, do you? :) Did the Elves and Paelias take him? Paelias is happy to assist though he does seem to think there are more pressing matters at hand in Portalis, and the Rusva'elen (ie – "tricksy elves"?) could care less what you do with the diplomat and agree with Paelias about pressing matters. 

Nox wants to know what they think is more important then finding out who attempted to sabotage the peace meetings and abduct ambassadors? Paelias speaks in a polite but firm tone, "Perhaps the threats to this town's tower and Etherium, which puts thousands of lives at risk versus the lives of a few diplomats, as well as the concurrent threats to several other towns in the world and their Etherium? I'm afraid our elven friends here are of the same mind as I am." One of the dark-leather clad elves adds softly, "...not that we'd care about these petty wars even without the other matters."

Nox: "Im sure that the lives of those that live in the lands that have been fought over don't consider this a petty act by any means." The elven ranger who was present when Lel, Rex, and Istarya fought the vine horror in the Portalis well, and at the temple beneath Portalis afterwards, named ilsindarel speaks up, "Goblin, I believe your name was Nox? Your kind are familiar with all kinds of war in everday life for territory and leadership, while it may appear these humans war over land you should not be surprised to find that there is always greed and lust fueling their actions.

Akkadia specifically is a blasted lands, warred over by these two nations for centuries, the only humans living there are agents of the war itself, and any beasts or innocents have the Rusva'elen of Akkadian lands to watch over them."

Nox: "Maybe this area, Akkadia, deserves some more investigation to see why it's so valuable to these warring people then." Nox is really only concerned about who he really works for. maybe who his contacts are and how we can get in touch with them. Nox uses the discern lie ritual called big axe. Istarya: I'll cast the ritual, I'll just hope to get reimbursed by other party members (or cast sleep on them and take it)

The Interrogation

Istarya uses the Discern Lies ritual. Insight results will be written in <>

In the bright light of many lanterns, the dwarf sits in a solitary chair at the center of the stone floor.

What does the box do?
"It's just an ordinary wooden box, particularly thick to contain that rock and the light it produces. I had not idea what was going to happen when we opened it!" <he is mostly telling the truth>

Where did you get the rock?
"It was left for us at one of the drop locations, with instructions to bring it to the meeting, hide it, and open the top. Clearly I didn't know what was going to happen or I would have excused myself from the room!" <truth>

Who do you work for?
"I'm a diplomat from Tarturia!" <lie>

Who do you really work for?
"Tarturia, I've told you a hundred times!" <another lie!>

No seriously, who do you work for before Nox chews your dangly bits off?
"Okay! Okay, no need for the gnashing of me dangly bits! I'm part of a covert infiltration group sent by Sarta to gather information on the Tarturian plans and to find out why they've increased their patrols into Akkadia. We joined their diplomatic envoy in hopes of finding out more information, swaying the results of the meetings, and rescuing the prisoner they have captive." <not entirely the truth>

Reminder: the clothing they are wearing beneath their incorrect Tarturian garb appears to be from Sarta

That is foolish, you may be a part of some covert infiltration group but probably not Sarta. It would make no sense to wear evidence of your treachery. It also makes no sense to endanger both sets of diplomats. Who do you really work for?
DM Note: You guys, especially Teodora and Istarya, can recognize the clothing they are wearing and their mannerisms as being from Sarta because you are adventurers and much more knowledgeable than the average person. Any other person in Portalis would most likely not be able to determine a nation of origin. So them wearing it is not a dead giveaway and is not as stupid for espionage.

"I didn't know what was going to happen when we opened the box!" <he's telling the truth but he's also quite nervous>

Who are your contacts?
"We had hidden contacts within the Sartean diplomatic party, but there was never face-to-face meeting and they are instructed to deny our very existence…" <here be lies>

Do you have hidden contacts within the Sartean diplomatic party?
"I just told you I did! They will deny it up and down, in fact some of them probably don't even know about us at all to protect us and the other diplomats!" <true>

How are you reaching your contacts?
"We had a series of drop locations around the administrative building in Portalis…" <more lies>

Lel: We get some Pelor radiance to shine in the dwarf's face.
Nox: How exactly did you make connections with your contacts? and where again? I must have missed that part while I was thinking of crushing your skull.
"A series of drops are located throughout the building where the meetings were being held, and some outside around the town. I doubt anything will be in any of the drops, they may even be unmarked by now, since the meeting was attacked and they must know I've been taken captive." <some truth, some lies, seems like mostly lies or he's just very nervous at this point>

Teodora: Stepping out from the background with a slight look of shame on her face, Teodora approaches the diplomat.
"If you don't mind, sir, I have a few questions of my own. I'm rather curious as to your opinion of the countries present for this meeting. I myself hail from the greatest Sartean province of Pelos! Indeed, I live and breathe for the League. Are you, as a Tarturian, for or against peace between our two nations? And what is your opinion on the land that divides us?"

Teodora realizes that she was a bit further behind on the conversation than she thought, and speaks again. "Alright, clearly I was being more subtle than I needed to be. How dare you, sir! How dare you cast such a dark mark on the League? I am not a woman who cares to understand government, but so help me, if there is corruption afoot…"

"Perhaps you should take that up with your leaders in Sarta, and rest assured there is far more corruption spreading across these lands than any of you know!" <he REALLY believes this part, ie – true>

Nox: "Was sarta behind leading the hobgoblin nations astray as well?"
"As far as I know Sarta has little or nothing to do with you hobgoblins. What led you astray is most likely your own warring nature!" <true, or at least he believes what he's saying>

Nox: Oh I also want to find out if he was ever given a name for his contact.
He does not seem to know who specifically his contacts were within the diplomats. <true>

"are all of these drop boxes here in portalis dwarf? Cleric bring me a map or some paper and quil please. Guess what dwarve you get to display your skills, where are all of these drop box locations." Father Jaelin fetches the hobgoblin some parchment, a quill, and some ink rather hastily. The dwarf circles two locations near the center of Portalis.
"These are the only two I ever knew about or used, I swear!" <truth>

"are these all there are?"
"I know that there were more, but I don't know where they are." <he's lying, there weren't any other drops>

"are these locations correct?"
"Yes, they should be there assuming they haven't been removed by now." <true>

'''"What did you say the name of your contacts were again?"'''
"I didn't!" <true>

Fargrim: Since it seems we all have forgotten about McGwyver's sister… "what is your/your group's interest in saving the prisoner?"
"Obviously Sarta doesn't want to be responsible for the imprisonment or death of any individuals that are not directly involved in hostilities." <seems true, but he doesn't act sure of it>

"Is/was she working for Sarta?"
"To the best of my knowledge, which is not first hand because I have not been in Sarta for a long time." <true>
"They sent her to discover information relating to Akkadia, something about the diversion of the rivers…" <true>

"Is she a spy?"
"I believe that is what you would call her, but she was not working inside of Tarturia, she was working in Lesandria mostly from what I know." <true>

"What do you plan on doing with her once she is rescued?"
"I'm not privy to this kind of information, my friend, but I imagine returning her to a safe place in either Lesandria or Sarta itself."

"Fargrim, fellow dwarf, I am sorry if I decieved you but surely you are no rigid national of Tarturia yourself! Did we not gamble at Tarturian Grimlock many nights on our flight to this town? Perhaps we can continue these questions over some ale at the pub?" <some lies, then some truth, then some lies again>

Nox: Who's McGwyver?
Fargrim: He's a stunty.

Lel: Who are your contacts within the Sartean party? Give us names or this will begin to be painful. If you don't know their names, describe them to us. Don't lie, we will know…

Lel leans forward to whisper threats in the dwarf's ear but instead says "If he is in this room, blink twice".

The dwarf looks uncomfortable for a minute, yammering about not knowing or having never met them while he looks about the poorly lit upper seating area. He seems to be lying. Then he blinks twice in a subtle way towards Lel.

Lel turns away and says "We must seize his belongings"
Lel beckons a Portalis guard over, "Can you search his quarters?" Quietly to the guard "Bring the Captain of the guard here quickly…"

The guard acknowledges and briskly hurries out of the temple. Wandering about Lel spreads the information to the rest of the party while the questioning continues.

"What does Sarta stand to gain by disrupting these diplomatic missions? Why make such a strange attempt in such a public way?"
"As I said before, I did not know what was going to happen at that meeting. Something must have gone wrong, or someone betrayed us, because that was not how things were supposed to go. We were supposed to get the dipl…err, I mean the prisoner out of there safely and…umm, make it look like it was an outside job." <He's telling the truth for the first parts, then he clearly gets hesitant, thinks more about his words, and is telling more lies>

Teodora: "I still cannot believe your ease with this betrayal. Tell me, where were you born? Which community failed to instill the values that most from the League receive simply by breathing?"
"Not all Sarteans are raised under the strict and pure guidance of the church like yourself, Human. Even the Emporer himself knows what has to be done some times in efforts of war and subterfuge. I am Voral of Hilland in the province of Iounia, that is where I was born and raised. <true, except for the 'born and raised' part and he is unable to accurately speak for the Emporer>

Lel: Does the name Modra mean anything to you?
A confused look quickly flashes across the dwarf's face, and he seems to ponder something, "The name sounds familiar, but I don't remember who or where from. Is this Modra person from Sarta?" <part of this is a lie, and its not the part about the name sounding familiar>

Teodora: "What is your opinion on the region of Akkadia?" ...

Adventure 14.4 - Paelias' Tower

Fearing that something bad had happened, Maxentius pleads with the party to investigate Paelias' tower outside of town to discover why the wizard had been missing for weeks.

With Klar along to help, Fargrim, Istarya, Lel, and Gandorph set out to the edge of town and upon approaching the tower discovered the image of a giant tree growing out of the top with roots and branches protruding out from various spots of the broken stonework. Inside the tower the party spoke with Paelias and his shy looking eladrin sister, both of whom implored them that he simply needed help clearing out his basement. Lel noticed the candles in the tower were flickering at him oddly, and that he did not remember the giant beam of fey energy extending up through the center of the tower that was now there.

In the basement a trap was sprung, the party could not escape and found themselves surrounded by growing roots and a pair of dangerous Cockatrices. The party avoided being turned to stone and burned up the roots, tossing both of the cockatrices into the disintegrating beam of energy in the center of the tower. At the top of the tower they confronted Paelias and discovered his sister to actually be a howling hag in disguise. Assaulted by a pair of displacer beasts and a pair of dryads, the party fought off the monsters and the hag while Paelias cowered in the corner. 

After clearing the room the party discovered that Paelias' spirit was trapped in the beam of energy, and as he returned he also warned that he'd been followed through from wherever he was trapped – by a Beholder. What followed was a vicious fight with the beholder that resulted in the intentional burning down of Paelias' tower and a barely dead beholder in the end. 

Paelias was forced to move his base of operations to the Mage Guild inside of Portalis.

1,175xp – Fargrim, Istarya, Lel, and Gandorph

Medallion of Death Deferred +2
Stalwart Boots
Gloves of Eldritch Admixture (Istarya)

Adventure 14.3 - The Broken Tower

 In an effort to finish off the Bile Spider Goblin tribe, Oryn and Fargrim set out to clear an old abandoned tower that it was rumored the remainder of the tribe had fled to after their leader was defeated. 

Entering the bottom level of the old tower, the pair found a group of goblins meeting with an orc with a tattoo of a mask covering his face. After defeating them all, Fargrim and Oryn discovered a letter in the orc's posession attempting to set up an agreement between the goblins and the Black Mask orc tribe to the north-east. 

The pair also defeated a group of skeletons and a goblin hexer on the middle level of the tower, and found a goblin underboss with a bugbear and a pair of wolves on the top level. As they defeated the underboss they pushed him off a ledge, falling to the bottom of the tower, the goblin boss opened a small flask and drank the boiling contents. Transforming into a gruesome half-goblin half-demon being, he flew back up to the top of the tower and spewed corrosive vomit over the two adventurers. However, his body seemed unstable with the mutation and after a few good attacks he exploded into a massive gory mess.

1,175xp – Oryn and Fargrim

Autumn Harvest Totem +2
2x Gems (100gp each)
2x Emerald Gems (150gp each)

Adventure 14.2 - Goblin Problems

After rescuing Rex from the ruins beneath Artegia, Oryn and McGwyver met up with Teadora at the tavern where they met a Tarturian Warden that arrived with the diplomats named Fargrim. A paladin of Kord named Gandorph also joined them as Maxentius informed the party that one of the town's safeguards, the Staff of Paelias, was stolen from the tower in the center of town. He suspected the Bile Spider Goblins around town were responsible so he asked them to investigate north of town where merchants were being attacked. The party met up with a merchant named Bertrand and agreed to protect him on his trip north to Lesandria.

Shortly outside of town a tree is blocking the path, followed by another tree falling behind the cart trapping the merchant and party in. Bursting forth from the trees were a group of oddly scared and stitched goblins and a giant mutated rage drake attempting to loot the wagon and kill anyone in their way. As the goblins were cut down, another goblin appeared at the top of the hill and released some kind of powder into the air which caused all of the goblins, dead or alive, to burst in an explosion of poison and acid. 

The party caught up with a goblin, named Zur, in the forest and intimidated him into telling them where their hideout was located. He informed them of a hidden back door that would lead them in unnoticed, so the party decided to trust him. Sneaking in through a series of caves, the party discovered that Zur had not lied as they were on top of the head of the goblin tribe, Ziguarz and his mutated goblin zombie hulk. After fighting off a slew of exploding goblins and the hulk, the party killed Ziguarz who ranted insanely that he would return one day, and retrieved the Staff of Paelias. 

1,133xp – Fargrim, Oryn, Gandorph, McGwyver, and Teodora

Symbol of Life +2 (Teadora)
Elven Cloak (Ravic)


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