Empires Shadows

The Beginning

Wynterhaven and its Environs

14th day of Harvest, 513

• The mercenaries; Led by Alzir Mithresian, a human Cleric of Avandra and consisting of Barabbas gro-karnac, a half-orc warlord and Kildrak Barathazburk, a dwarven warrior of vampire decent, arrived in Applewatch with a trade caravan they had been assigned to guard. Collecting their pay they set out for Wynterhaven for more work. After being ambushed by Kobolds the heroes arrived in the small town.

15th day of Harvest, 513

• LacEo kobold medking in funds the group took on a small job from the towns Warriors Guild: to eradicate the nest of Kobolds that were harrying merchants and farmers around the towns perimeter. They hired a local to the Nentir Basin, Garthius Ratstink a half-elf rogue as their guide.

• They quickly took out the sentries and sneaked into the Kobolds lair behind the waterfall. There they descended on the kobolds in a confusing melee. During the melee the adventurers were confronted by a ferocious goblin by the name of Irontooth who, along with the kobolds, they dispatched

• The party tended to their wounds and Barabbas took the Goblins Iron tooth as a trophy. He also found a necklace of a carved skull bearing rams horns. While searching the cavern the adventurers came across a letter written in goblin from someone named Kalerel.

• On returning to Wynterhaven the party discovered that a local scholar named Apothius Moongem had disappeared while leading a small expedition north to a dragon burial site and that his wife, Delphina is offering a reward for someone to go and search for him.

16th day of Harvest, 513

The party travel north and discover the burial site over run with hired thugs searching through the dragons buried hoard, and overseen by a spectral apparition of Kalerel.

• The heroes defeated the thugs and banish the apparition of Kalerel. They discover the bloody and tortured but alive form of Apothius at the burial site. After a harrowing interrogation the party return Apothius to his wife and collect their reward.

• While searching around the town they discovered the legend of Shadowfell Keep. Apothius explained that the keep was built on the site of a rift into the Shadowfell. Ser Keegan, a paladin of Bahamut, ran mad with the voices from the Shadowfell rift and ran amok in the keep, killing his own men, wife and children before killing himself. The adventurers went to Lord Padraig who set up a meeting with Trading House Voran to secure the funds for the mercenaries pay.

• The mercenaries argued with the banking clan over the price and when they will be paid. A guard attacked Garthius as Alzir summoned a mote of divine light and launched it at the Lead Representative of the Banking Clan. The guards were easily overcome by the party but the town Watch backed up by the militia arrive, summoned by the frantic ringing of the bell from those within the panic room, and the group are arrested for the murder of the town guards and Lord Padraig.

16th day of Harvest, 513 (night)

• The party escaped through the sewers and exit near to the Keep. They decided to take a look around the keep and decended into the ruins dungeons. Kildrak charges a pair of goblin sentries and falls into a spike filled pit, concealed by a dusty, stone colours tarpaulin. Rats swarm around him and the party fight off the goblins and rats.

• They head south anArmenia cavernd come to a set of pitch black catacombs. They expend a sun rod and find an exit to the south where they battle zombies and skeletons, making their way through a torchlight corridor to a pair of alters, flanking a tomb. In the alters the party finds four dragon statues and Alzir examines them, proclaiming them statues of Bahamut.

• They head east, into the tomb and are confronted by the spectral form of Ser Keegan, the keeps former protector who accuses them of being grave robbers. The party protest their innocence and make an offering of the statues to Ser Keegan, who accepts.

• Next they decided to retrace their steps and explore a northen passage way that they had neglected before.

  • Garthius heard the sounds of voices coming from beyond a big double door. Kildrak lured a pair of goblins out to them by pretending to be a superior officer and ordering them out. He and Barabbas lay in wait behind the door and killed them silently when they came out, with Alzir and Garthius’ aid before heading north into the next room.

• They found themselves in a torture chamber and fought and killed a goblin torturer and discovered a cell full of prisoners and a note from Trading House Voran, offering to purchase them as slaves, as per their long standing arrangement. They surmised that Voran were going to send warning to the keep ahead of their departure so that the mercenaries would be captured and sold, probably to fight in the gladiator arena and that that is why they were so reluctant to pay out up front.

• In the prison cells amonMinotaur qjpreviewthg the other prisoners were a minotaur Knight, named Foostus, pacing the small space, so tall that his horns scraped the ceiling of the cell, setting off sparks, and a dragonborn warlock, Hadar the Hungry. Alzir and Barabbas offered them the chance to come with them and help to clear out Shadowfell Keep. They agreed and Garthius picked the lock, assisted by Alzir and Barabbas.

• Kildrak was asked by a goblin that was sharing the cell next door with some of the prisoners for help and to release him. Cautious, Kildrak consulted the rest of the party. After much discussion they decided to release the goblin, Splug, and to have him act as their guide. However they continue to distrust him. Alzir takes the note from Trading House Voran hoping to use it to clear their name in the future.

• They take the easten passage and Garthius hears voices from up ahead, stopping the party by raising his hand. Alzir questions Splug about whats up ahead and he tells the party that the room ahead are the personal chambers of the goblin Balgaron the Fat. Hadar the Hungry brightens up at the prospect of a good meal.

• Garthius scouts ahead on Alzir’s orders and discovers two sentries engaged in a grueling card game with a bell set on the table between them. He communicates this back to Alzir who tells him to remove the bells clapper and to then start the attack. He creeps back around, steals the bell and quickly disassembles the clapper before returning the bell and attacking with his short sword.

• As Garthius attacks the other swarm quietly around the corner to lay into the two sentries. One of them survives and sounds the alarm by shouting. He only succeeds in warning a few goblins in the next room who charge the party, engaging them in a pitched battle.

• The sounds of the skirmish waken Balgaron who enters the fight. Kildrak singles him out and drives him back from the rest of the goblins. Balgaron pleads with him for mercy but Kildrak severs Balgarons head with his fathers axe and claims it as a trophy, hanging it from his belt.

• The party finish the fight quickly and begin to sort through the loot. Hadar helps himself to the fruits and wines stored in Balgarons bed chamber while Garthius picks the lock on a chest containing some gold and a Magic Wand. Hadar, being the parties only magic user, appraises its worth at around 360gp and packs it with the other loot to be sold at the first opportunity. Garthius mentions that he can feel a draft and after a quick inspection Alzir and Kildrak concur that the wall next to Balgarons bed is false. Garthius discovers and uses a lever behind the chest and the wall swings open, revealing a secret escape way.

• They head south down the ascape way and the party can hear the sound of digging, harsh clangs as picks and spades hit hard earth and stone. They halt and discuss quickly whats ahead. Foostus grips Splugs jerkin front and demands to know what is up ahead. He tells them that Balgaron ordered some of his command to excavate the room beyond. He is looking for some great treasure though none know what it is and nothing has been found yet. Alzir attempts to gain insite into weather Splug tells the truth and detects that the goblin is nervous.

• Foostus thrusts splug round the corner, whispering in his ear that he will go first. Splug takes a few steps into the room. One of the excavation team see him and demand to know how he escaped. Splug bellows that there are adventurers following him and the party, angered by his treachery engage in combat. Kildrak and Foostus engage in a pitched battle with some guard drakes on the ramp that leads from the pit while Garthius flits nimble across a set of rickety plank bridges to assault one of the goblins.

• Alzir closes with Splug and quickly swats him with his Morningstar, killing him.

• Hadar steps cautiously onto one, cursing foes and burning them with his green, infernal flames but he overbalances and falls to the floor on his back.

• Alzir hops down from the platform into the excavation site and joins in with the fight down there. Hadar picks himself up and continues fighting and soon they dispatch the goblins and guard drakes. They loot the bodies and Alzir uses Garthius’ dagger to cut Splugs testicles off and stuffs his mouth as a warning for all who betrey them.

• They adventurers then return west, to the corridors bathed in pitch blackness. Hadar strikes a sun rod, bathing most of the party in light while Kildrak and Garthius act as scouts, using their low-light vision to see while moving just ahead of the sphere of brightness. They come across a glyph, carved into the floor. Alzir and Hadar both felt that the symbol was charged with some sort of magic, though neither could tell what its effects might be. Alzir, Kildrak and Garthius spent a few moments arguing as to who would go across first untill Kildrak plucked up the courage and stepped onto the glyph.

• It emitted a terrifying wailing sound Dungeonand Kildrak was struck with some sort of nectrotic magic, withering some of the flesh on his arm. Hadar commented that the magical charge has gone out of the glyph and that it would be safe to walk across now. Alzir looked Kildraks would over and confirmed that the damage was not permanent but that he would likely have a scar.

• They carried on north, through the catacombs untill they came to another glyph. Foostsus suggested that this time they jump across the glyph instead of stepping onto it. Garthius made it across with ease, as did Foostus and Kildrak. Hadar however, stumbled on a rock and landed on the glyph, setting it off and dealing necrotic damage in a wide burst to Alzir, Garthius, Foostus and himself. They were filled with an unearthly terror by the sound and they charged off in different directions along the fork in the corridor up ahead; Alzir and Foostus taking the westen fork while Hadar and Garthius went east. Kildrak was stoicly unaffected.

• Both parties came to their sences quickly and were confronted by another glyph and a group of zombies. Foostus lept across the glyph to meet the zombies, holding them back while Alzir moved to aid Garthius and Hadar.

• Garthius also lept across the symbol ahead of him, baiting a zombie into advancing on him while he circled, attacking and lining him up for Hadar at the same time. They and Kildrak worked in concert to defeat the zombies while Alzir moved along the passage with put him at the back of the Zombies in combat with Foostus. He moved forward attempting ti flank them and invoking Avandra’s power to turn the undead; however the holy light cast from his symbol failed and the undead remained impassive.

• The rest of the party moved up and together, they acted as the hammer to drive the zombies onto Foostus, the Anvil. Garthius noticed that one of the walls was a slightly different colour to the ones surrounding it and further inspection revealed that it did not sit quite flush with them. After feeling the wall and finding a trigger panel the wall slid back and the party entered into a small, empty room

• Kildrak noticed that the far wall shimmered slightly and Alzir stepped forward to touch it, dispelling the illusion and revealing four more zombies. They attacked and quickly overcame them. In the room they found rusted, battered weaponry on racks and an armour stand holding up a suit of battered and worthless armour.They spotted a plaque above the armour and attempt to read it. As they do a booming voice sounds from nowhere, reading the words on the plaque aloud, posing the riddle:
A wondrous treasure,
Valued by all, sought by many.
Found in both victory and defeat,
Yet never at the bottom of a treasure chest.
It marches before you like a herald,
And lives long after you are gone.
Of what do I speak?

• Alzir and Hadar led a discussion amoungst the adventurers until Hadar came up with the answer, Legacy, which proved correct. The armours dents unfolded, seemingly hammering themselves out and the dust and rust fell away, revealing an impressive set of blackiron scale armour. Since it was of no use to any one member of the party it was decided that the armour should be added to the loot rather than used by anyone in particular. Foostus stowed it away.
• The party decided to use this hidden room as a place to rest, closing the door and Hadar reassembling the illusary wall.

17th day of Harvest, 513 (night)

• While he slept, Alzir was subjected to a strangly lurid dreRoman templeam. He dreamed of his old mentor, Douvan Stoul, but he appeared to Alzir 100 feet tall. He was in combat with a giant dragon on the steps of a Temple to the Pantheon. Douvan, seemingly unthinkingly, crushed Alzir under the sole of his boot. Alzir woke up and recognised the dream as possibly being some sort of prophetic dream, sent by Avandra or one of her exarchs but was unable to make sence of it. He chose not to tell the rest of the group about the dream and they forged ahead.

• The heroes decended the staircase into the lower level of the dungeon. At the base they were confronted by a pair of hobgoblins who offered them the challenge phrase: “Shadow seeks Shadow.”

• Hadar attempted to bluff their way past by calling back, “Sanguine, my Brother.” The hobgoblin called out that they were intruders and surged forward to pin the adventurers on the stairs while hobgoblins poured forward to assist them and two others ran to the back of the room to try and release a giant, man sized spider caged there. The adventurers fought well but there were too many between them and the cage to prevent the spider being released.

• The spider scuttled up the wall and across the ceiling, dropping down behind Foostus and delievering a poisonos bite to the warrior. Hadar called on his dark powers of infernal fire to deliver heavy damage to the spider while Kildrak closed to finish it. Alzir used some first aid and Foostus recovered quickly from the poison.

• They next headed along the east passageway and took the northan door, entering into combat with more hobgoblins which they easily defeat. Hadar finds some salted pork which he packs for trail rations while Foostus finds a keg of ale. The party take a moment for a quick drink before heading south, bypassing a closed door.

• They came to a room with two doors, one leading south and another to the west. The westen one was boarded up tight with a sign written in common reading, “Closed”

• They decided to go that way and Foostus, Kildrak and Alzir put their shoulders to the door, smashing through it. They found themselves in a corrider where the floor was remarkably dust free. They decided to head up the northen corridor and found themselves in a room with four sarcophagi. Foostus noticed a slight slurping sound and turned to find a gelatinous cube bearing down on them. Hadar advanced on it, cursing it and drawing on Cyrics dark power to fight it while Foostus and Garthius charged it. Kildrak and Alzir were about to move to aid them when two of the sarcophagi burst open and two rancid undead flowed out. They charged the undead, Alzir summoning Avandra’s will to turn them, this time succedding.

• The cube squelched forward, engulfing Foostus, causing him to be burned by the cubes acidic compound. Hadar continued to call on his pact to fight it while Foostus swum for the edge of the cube and Garthius pulled him out. Alzir and Kildrak continued to fight the undead, hampered by their fetid stink. Foostus was again engulfed as Hadar teleported through the cube to flank it. Garthius retreated, drawing the cube towards the room containing Kildrak, Alzir and the undead. Garthius headed through the door into an adjacent room and hid. The cube entered the area and advanced on Alzir. Foostus tried to swim towards the edge of the cube again but its tide was against him.

• Garthius sprang his trap, charging the cube and performing a sneak attack. The cubes form disapated flooding the room and depositing and coughing, smoking Foostus onto the floor. The group then turned their attention on the undead.

• Alzir attended to the partys wounds and they searched the area, finding some items of small to medium value that Hadar and Alzir suspect were once the property of Ser Keegan’s children as the jewellery bares their names. Alzir made the suggestion that they later return to Ser Keegan’s tomb and leave these items there though the matter remained undecided.

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Barabbas

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