STORM KINGS THUNDER

A Tinkerer's Madness
Report to Ketra

For Lady Ketra's Eyes Only:

Report Number:  0100011101101110011011110110110101100101001000000101001101110100011110010110110001100101

As instructed, we made our way to Noanar's Hold to deliver the harnesses, along the way we encountered what seemed to be a large wolf that was very ferocious, it put up quite a fight but we eventually scared it off, as it simply disappeared…it is possible it was also a spectre. Further information will be provided below in that regard. It was late in the night and we made our way to the town shortly after, the guards, if you can call them that, were alerted to the boom of one of Ysma's fire balls during the conflict. We obtained lodgings and found out that we should not go outside, however, the area and its inhabitants had Rin & myself wary, so, after a short meditation, Rin made it outside to spend time with the horses and keep them safe. He was approached at that point by a little girl, who he tried to assist, though, she grappled him and attempted to bring him to another location, he made it into the lodgings and we managed to subdue her, only to find out she was a spectre of some sort, thus the assumption that the wolf was as well a spectre. We then spent the rest of the night in the inn, and made our way in the morning to the hunting lodge where Amareth was located, the one who requested the saddles. More to that shortly, after communing with Garl I found out that this spectre is a type of undead that is most commonly freed by either burning the bones, or burying them properly. I used the location device that Breer & I mounted onto the wagon to find where children's bones might be found…they were located in the hunting lodge, in, not on the grounds, but in. I could not allow this to pass, so, we investigated and turned the saddles in, I double checked by using the device again, and they were once more, located in the hunting lodge. After minor convincing, we as a group (Breer being hesitant) decided to resolve the issue, Rin & Breer climbed the building after Breer did some recon work, we found many indicators that this is defiled, and upon detecting evil, we found that the entire place was desecrated. Ysma asked what we were on about, and upon informing her, she went to the door and pounded on it, this acted as a distraction for Rin & Breer, while I stayed with her. After a time, we managed to locate the master of the house and defeat him, as well as find the bones and give them proper rights. We also incinerated the house to cleanse the grounds. I am certain Rin & others will be able to provide more detail, however, my soul is horrowed by this and I wish to meditate, any questions you have I will be happy to answer.

 

In Garl's Name,

Fennwick Fitzlebottom, Owner & Proprieter of the Fitzlebottom Emporium.

Cleric of the order of Tricksters, Beloved of Garl Glittergold.

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Rin's Report
Attn: Ketra

While you were tied up in meetings with people from corporate HQ, the rest of us did as you asked and completed the delivery of the saddles.

I have to admit, I had some trepidation about being given charge of this mission. As I'm sure you remember, I didn't do so well the last time I was tasked with keeping track of Fennwick and Breer. With the added responsibility of also watching over Ysma, I felt a bit over my head as we headed out.

Things went fairly smoothly getting out there. With some basic directions from the locals before we left, I was able to prevent us from getting lost with relative ease. Due to poor trail conditions, the going was slow and we were on the road longer than expected. As we neared the hold, we were attacked by some type of beast. No, beast is the wrong word. It wasn't a beast, it was like some kind of hellhound, except it breathed cold instead of fire. In the dark and the fog it hid from us after we first spotted it. I went ahead since I could move faster than the others through the thick undergrowth and eventually the creature was flushed out of hiding. Ysma's fire was particularly helpful in routing the thing. I am fairly certain the creature was destroyed, or possibly banished. It did not leave a corpse, though I'm fairly certain a final arrow from my bow ended its life as it fled. Without any more trouble, we headed on to the settlement.

It was quite late when we finally arrived. The others went to see about getting us lodging at the Inn. I stayed to secure the wagon and the horses, which was more difficult than I had expected. The stable was boarded up, so I had to hobble the horses and secure the wagon out in the open. Fortunately, I didn't need more than a brief rest, and after about an hour I went out to keep watch on the horses and wagon. 

After a few uneventful hours, a small child came wandering by. The posted guards ignored her completely, which seemed somewhat strange to me. It was quite chilly and damp, and the child was obviously cold. I asked her where her parents were and she pointed off in the direction of some fields saying her home was that way. I tried to take the child's hand and she immediately began climbing and clamoring to be held and carried. I kept trying to put her down but she was very difficult to handle. I decided to take her to the Inn where she would at least be able to get warm. Perhaps in the morning we could find someone who knew the child and could help. But as I brought her into the Inn she started screaming loudly and then began biting and clawing at me! I soon realized I was not going to be able to subdue the child with normal means. I transformed into a snake to better grab hold of her and keep her still. It was about that time that Fennwick and the others were awakened by all the racket. I admit, it was poor planning on my part. No one in the group has seen me in snake form before. For a few tense moments it seemed likely that my companions would see me, the snake, as the aggressor and come to the aid of the little girl. Who could blame them? It was my own lack of foresight that created the situation. But Fenwick, with some quick thinking, cast some kind of detect or turn undead and then it became obvious that we weren't dealing with a human girl. 

It seems obvious looking back. I should have known something was wrong about the girl. I did know, but I didn't want to trust myself. I just wanted to help the child. I was too willing to take the situation at face value. I have much to learn about the way things work out in the world. But that is, after all, why I took this job. I just need to learn to make better decisions for the sake of the group, but I digress.

After defeating the "little girl" apparition, we finished resting up and prepared to make our delivery. Fennwick did some kind of religious or spiritual research and found out that the child's spirit was connected to remains which we might find in the area. If we could bury or destroy the remains, the spirit would cease to return, or something like that. Using the giant's divining tool, which we had brought along, Finney was able to find out where a large collection of human remains was. (Side note: I thought it was pointless to bring that metal thing with us the whole way. I thought it would be useless and just take up space, but I was wrong.)

It turns out the bones we were looking for were in the same place we were headed to make our delivery, an old hunting lodge up on a hill overlooking the town. Now we had to decide if we were just going to make our delivery or look into the situation with the bones. Fennwick and I wanted to investigate the bones, Breer wanted to deliver the saddles and leave. After explaining the situation to Ysma, she seemed eager to find out where the bones were as well. 

So we made our delivery. We were met by an old dwarf who politely bade us to leave the crate in the entry way of the Large old lodge which we had come to find out was the residence of whomever had made the saddle purchase. (I don't remember the name. I know we had it written down somewhere. I have to get better with names and details like that.) After dropping off the saddles, we let ourselves out and began looking around the property to see if there were any other clues as to where or why there might be dead people in this lodge. The stable was filled with piles of horse bones where horses would have been, or perhaps were.

After a bit of discussion and deliberation it was decided that Breer and I would climb to the top floor and check things out up there, then perhaps come back and report what we found , if anything, to the others. As Breer and I headed up the wall to the third floor, Ysma had knocked on the door and was talking to the old butler again. As it was too late to deal with that, Breer and I headed into the third floor via a corner of the lodge that had been damaged and left open to the elements. Searching the rooms as we went, we didn't find much of interest on the third floor. We went down a set of stairs to the second floor where we came across a couple of skeletons, one sitting, one reclining on a bed as if placed there by someone. Could these have been the remains the device led us to?

As Breer opened another door, we came face to face with a man (perhaps the lord of the lodge?) who threatened us, as if to imply we would join his collection of skeletons. Combat at this point was unavoidable. After a few ranged attacks are exchanged, the lord grabed a glaive off the wall. Breer and I skirmished into a hallway to try to avoid the weapon's long reach. After a few moments of fighting I heard the butler's voice outside the room where we met the man. He's arguing with someone. It's Fennwick! The others made it into the house! I ran down the hall to let Fennwick know where we were. Ysma must not have been far behind at that point either.

Once all of us had converged we were able to dispatch the evil hunter. After he fell, I reached down to pull off his mask and see who it really was! It wasn't a mask. Whoops. So then we set about searching out the corpses, which we piled up and burned along with the entire lodge. I wasn't sure if we needed to burn the whole house or not, but Fennwick said the evil presence was very strong and it would be risky to leave anything behind. He's the expert in such matters, so I didn't argue.

Hopefully, the local people there can now lead normal lives, but I have my doubts. They seemed quite resigned to allow the evil to remain there before for Gods only know how long. I suppose we did what we could. All in all, I'd say we did well. Everyone performed quite admirably, in and out of combat. Neither Fennwick nor Breer caused any mischief or mayhem. They were both quite good about keeping the mayhem relegated to the field of battle. Ysma kept her habbit of wandering off to a minimum, and was as usual, invaluable in fighting. I would also point out that Fennwick really put duty first when dealing with the undead and abundant evil. Also Breer, though he didn't want to stay and deal with the lodge still performed his duties very well in helping us. And sometimes doing your work at the times when you least want to can be most difficult indeed.

That concludes my report. I think we're all looking forward to having you back with us from here on out. Your job as leader is harder than it looks!

 

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Breer's Journal of Daring Do - Part 5
It's the little things...

There are events that occur in your life that really make you question the choices that have lead you to where you are today.  Being turned to stone is one of those events.

I've realized that while I'm fine with my choices, I haven't really taken the time to notice my surroundings and enjoy the trip.  For example, it never occurred to me that a person transformed to stone would look the same as a statue carved from rock by hand.  What about all those statues I've walked passed on this trip?  What if some of them were like me?

Also, I never really took the time to stare at the detail around me.  I've never been great at finding traps.  I always thought it was because trap makers were really good at what they did, but now I wonder if I was just in too much of a hurry to really examine all the fine details of a door or a wall.

Found out that roasted pigeon is delicious.  I never really took the time to savor it before.

You know what else?  Swamps.  I never liked them, but today while we were waiting for a giant to walk into our ambush, I just took a moment to enjoy the foul mud as it sloshed around my toes in my boot.  It wasn't a consistent feeling, there were harder and softer bits in the slime, and there might have been a crawly bit in there as I wiggled my toes.  Made a very pleasant squishing sound too.

Yeah, encountered a giant doing giant-stuff again.  The others started talking about it but I kept my mind on important things, like how wiggling the toes of my left foot makes a slightly different sound than wiggling my toes on my right foot.

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Ysma's Journal of Discovery part 6
Beyond the Temple

The next day a great storm began and the roads turned to rivers of mud. We trudged through until we couldn't go any further. Middle of the next day I met a dragon (this one was very nice). It was looking for a group of Zhentarim to "harass". I told it I will help look. (I have no idea what Zhentarim are, I will ask Fenwick, he is very knowledgeable)

Soon after we ran into a group of merchants heading to Yartar, wagon nearly broken, slogging through the mud. We stopped to help and get some information. Rin was given a bag of "good luck". (smells odd). We camp again in the intense storm and spend the night protected by Ketra's camping spell.

The following day it was still raining and nasty. We continued on until just before nightfall when lights appeared out of the night and attacked us. Rin recognized them as Will-o-wisps. They attacked with lightning, Fenwick saved us (and the horses) with his magic.

The day after, the rains continued until we arrived at a small village with a keep on a hill overlooking it. Music drifted down to us and with hopeful faces knocked upon the closed gates. It turns out that we found an inn that is extremely well defended called The Callinghorns.

The bar seemed lively and well appointed. With music, laughter, and rich food we thanked the patrons for their kindness.  After a warming bath, a change of clothes and a good meal the road seemed a long way off. The ale was tasty and made me whirly and warm (I like Ale). Music. Dancing. Hot skin. The night became very "Fuzzy" and sleepy. I went upstairs to bed.

My Dream that night was of mom and home all warm and cozy but was transformed into a nightmare, as an attack of two monsters, called Trolls, intruded on my peaceful home. Great hulking monsters with green rubbery skin, that healed scarily fast. They hungrily attacked the guards in the courtyard. My friends and the guards were attacking the monsters with great desperation.  Fire seemed to be the beasts great bane.

So I blew them up with fire…

The rest of my Dream was blessed darkness.

Ketra told me the next day that my nightmare was real and the inn was attacked. I was understandably upset, because I didn't remember any of my actions the night before. (I think I was naked. Ketra keeps telling me that being naked is not proper, I still don't understand.)

The lord of the keep, Lord Zoar, used his power with the Weave and restored Breer. With joyous tears and Hugs we welcomed Breer back. We were asked to investigate the reasons why the Trolls were venturing so far away from their swamps. This inn was apparently a nexus of activity as the center of travel in this area. Merchants and mercenaries, travelers resting, and pious people of faith heading to sacred destinations, stopping in their contemplations to revive the body on the quest for spiritual succor. Lord Zoar offered Ketra the use of one of his guards, named Brian. ( he was nice) We stayed an extra night and headed out the next day.

The swamps were even more horrible than we heard, the rains never stopped once, and the fog covered everything. We found nothing the first day. The fog was ever present and gloomy until we heard a low grumble in the fog. Tizzy kitty flew away to find the source of the noises. Ketra, through Tizzy, reported that a Fire Giant was bullying a group of trolls for food while it searched the swamp with the help of a magic rod, the same kind used by the Fire Giants to find the metal construct part in Triboar.

The giant walked toward us and never knew we were there when we attacked as best we could. Rin struck the first blow with an arrow to the neck but it seemed to ignore the wound. I removed Winaal from the bag an send him over to defend my friends. The giant attacked Winaal and smashed him down with cruel strokes of its sword. (horrible monster) I reach into the bag a second time and find Winaal ready to revenge itself upon the Giant. We attacked the giant with the fervor of desperation. It stepped over Winaal and walked up to me. I tried to conceal myself but luck was with the thing and it hit me hard, nearly opening me up like a fresh deer kill. Rin surrounded the Giant with thorny spikes. With slow, lumbering, painful stomps it stalked forward and struck me once again, into blackness…

I awoke to cold rain spattering my face. and Fenwick smiling down at me. The Giant was dead and Winaal still alive, I gave him a great hug, and sat up. We struck out for Callinghorns, dragging with us the heavy rod. Lord Zoar told us our debt is repaid. The rest of night is awash in drinks, food and stories of giant killers, A messenger arrived while we were out investigating the trolls. The message was from King Brunor of the Mithril Hall informing us that Frank will not be rejoining us here, on our adventures. More pressing matters of the Dwarves await his attention.  (I will miss him, we all will)

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I Was Scared, You Were Petrified.
The Minder of A Tinkerer...The Mind of A Cleric

Oh Caramottin…It was horrible, we left Yartar and ended up finding this little old church building, it was infested with Bugbear & Goblins…we made short work of them and I found that this place had become a very deadly and potentially multi-culturially dangerous place for anyone who did not serve demons…as there were multiple summoning circles and runes in regards to them. As we delved deeper into the temple, we encountered a masked woman…a woman unlike any other I had encountered before…after a few moments a memory surfaced of a request we once had, to capture a woman with snakes for hair..this was indeed such a woman, and she was savage in her assaults. Dear Breer ended up so scared, he turned to Stone….I mean, we are both rock gnomes, but he didnt have to be literal about it. And our little friend Ace, a mercenary we took on, also met the same fate…but in the end, we did end up winning the day, at the cost of two allies…we now make our way to find an adept cleric capable of restoring them, and with luck, it will be on the cheap side….I need to lick my wounds and contemplate on the healing capacity that I must reach to be able to serve my companions better, as well as achieve our ultimate goal…fare well dear Caramottin, until my next letter.

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Ysma's Journal of Discovery Part 5
On the road to delivery

Lady Rosolio was very kind to us when we brought back the nobles and her necklace, and she gave us treasure! Frank had a quiet conversation with Lady Rosolio and he had to excuse himself and told us that he would join us later. My friends gave me a gift; the Bag of Tricks.(I'm going to call it The Bag of Friendly Animals) Ketra met with someone named "Hireling". She called herself Ace.

We left Yartar to go deliver the saddles from Triboar. a few days later we were stopped on the road by a group of goblins asking for tolls from us. They attacked Ketra, so I blew them up! Apparently they had a hill giant friend named Gaah. Blubbery and foul, it charged at us. Breer brought it down with an arrow, and it skidded to a stop in front of us. A lone goblin ran away. Rin caught up quickly and brought it down with a single well placed arrow.

I decided to feed some of my friends, so Braydaal, Woofasil, and Yawnee stayed with the cart and horses and fed upon the giant. We went up the trail to investigate. a small jumbled campsite where the goblins and giant divided the spoils of their business. Rin left to find out where the trail went to. We followed behind at a good distance and caught up very quickly. We saw an ancient ruin with a set of giant doors set into a stone frame. We decided to go inside and explore. (What fun!)

Inside, we found what looked like an entryway to an ancient temple, with a dagger in red paint inscribed on the floor. There were a few goblins and a bugbear in residence. Breer sent in a friend he made, and it exploded in a flash of light. My friends ran in and slaughtered the goblins with little resistance. More bugbears flooded in from another part of the temple and were overcome by my friends and fire.

After checking the rest of the ruins we came across a barricaded door at the bottom of a set of stairs. We cleared away the piled boxes and other debris to reveal a set of double doors leading into the oldest part of the temple. Breer decided to inspect and open the door, he was hit with a bolt of lightning. (Magical traps are a thing I'm told) We decided to open the door anyway.(curiosity was overwhelming) The door revealed a darkened room lit by braziers, featured with wide pillars and unmoving shadowy figures. One shadow stepped out from a side alcove in the room and shot at Breer.

I blew up the room.

The party ran into the room to confront the Unknown person. With a growing sense of dread, we discovered that the person we defended ourselves against was a Medusa, hair of writhing serpents and powerful. With a baleful gaze, full of hate, she turned Breer and Ace to stone.

She tried to negotiate for her life, but I needed her to be punished for hurting my Family. We soon overcame her and stood over her lifeless body. I've been crying for hours over the loss of my friend Breer, but Fenwick said there were ways to restore him. (The Weave be praised) We gathered up what things we could and prepared to move along.

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Breer's Journal of Daring Do - Part 4
Mmmmmpphhh

Statue of Breer (not actual size)

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Missing A Wife
Mind of a Tinkerer Part 4

Ah Caramottin, if only you could have seen Breer in your dress, modified for stealth and arsenal both…he looked as charming as a gnomish bard at Tinkerfest! After he left with the rest of the crew, I went out in search of information, as well as assistance….It was a long night, but at last the boat docked and I followed Ketra, Rin, and a strange man with a woman in a purple gown. I made her a very kind offer that she just couldnt refuse, and she became my friend for a time. We found the cause of this towns troubles, or at least, the most evident ones. It was a strange journey down the sewers, and many many fish folk perished in the name of Garl Glittergold. Ah, this mucus is irritating, I need to finish combing through here to find evidence of that damned owner of the boat having a connection with this monstrosity. I will write more soon Cara…as always, I love you…I hope you can forgive this old gnome some day.

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Breer's Journal of Daring Do - Part 3
Now that's how we do it in Westgate

Well, I may not be able to pass as my sister, but I don't doubt that the Grand Dame's security chief doesn't doubt that I'm a master thief.

Sure, it would could have been a really good haul if I had figured out a way to cash in the Grand Dame chips I had lifted from the clueless passengers (I've still got the touch), but the look on the Captain's face was priceless when I tossed him the sack full of his patrons' money. 

My older brother Seer always talked about going legit, I should write him a letter and tell him about a security consulting opportunity for him on the Grand Dame. 

The two tall escorts who walked me out seemed quite impressed with my swagger.  Duana, the buxom redhead, even told me she had a thing for gnomes.  If we stay in Yartar for much longer, I might need to track her down for a drink.  She'll probably be really impressed when I tell her about the fight with Oosith.

But maybe I should wait until I have all my gear and clothes laundered…twice.

 

 

 

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Rin's thoughts [post casino]

Well, that actually went better than expected. Maybe I'll get my first positive performance review from the boss. I still don't get the whole casino thing. It was like going to a store and spending all my money, then coming away without having acquired any goods! What passes for entertainment in human communities I may never understand. 

We did obtain our objective at least. The half-elf woman was most helpful in leading us to her master, Oosith. I have never seen such an abomination to nature in my brief life! Like an angler fish spawned by demons out of the nine hells, it was! I will admit there were moments when I doubted that we would prevail against such a spawn of the hells. After an uncounted number of minutes which seemed like long hours, our combined efforts finally chased the last spark of life from its evil, writhing form.

Our company suffered no casualties, but I fear our dwarven friend may be suffering from the same malady that befell poor Arten! It is not a disease I am familiar with, yet my instincts as a healer tell me he is showing similar symptoms. We must find a way to heal him before we leave town, if indeed we are nearing the end of our stay in Yartar. Perhaps the clerics who are caring for Arten have made progress in brining him back to his former health and can help us, too.

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