Dorset Style - 06. Kingmaker

To Candlemere Tower

The lake known as Candlemere is notorious in the Stolen Lands for being haunted. Stories from fishermen, explorers, bandits, and tradesmen alike support these legends with eerie tales of strange lights dancing upon the waters, blood-curdling cries from what could be lost souls, and mysterious sightings of shapes rippling in the lake’s dark waters.

15th Gozran 4712

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Travelled to Candlemere Tower area and met Arven who fishing boat they borrowed. The place is haunted and all that remains is a tower from the age of destny

travelled back to shore, rested up ready to set out again on 18th Gozran 4712

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2nd Jan bonus session
Exploring

We’re heading for Candlemere with followers etc. Meeting Arven near there so he can take us across the lake then get away from it before night in case the rumours about it are true.

Island in middle, Candlemere lake itself water is almost black. We camp for the night, don;t see any of the lights we have heard about. Spend morning exploring, Arven arrives around mid afternoon, we stay night and then set off next morning. Arven likes his booze. Boat not all that big, so will be a squeeze for us. During the night we see different different coloured lights flickering inside the Lonely Tower on the island. During the night, Rena would like to tell everyone about hsi theory about the ‘ancestor spirit’. What we saw was unusual behaviour for that type pf creature, the WOTW normally lure creatures into marshes and they drown, so what if it has for a while been luring people off to be attacked by the lizard folk instead….maybe these are people who have disappeared and folk have blamed the Swamp Witch. Arven thinks its terror they feed on, so maybe the lizard folk were feeding it people….

We take arven’s boat. As we get to the island, it’s covered in brambles and stinging nettles, difficult terrain. In centre is a ruin, only the tower is still standing, 40ft tall, lots of overgrown rubble around it. We slowly and carefully climb up to the tower. Everyone has vague sense of unease, we are intruders, we are scared of this place. Carvings and symbols on the tower’s stones. Written in Aclo, first world of fey – it says (fragments) part of series of blasphemous prayers to gods of old cults, entities from beyond the multiverse, primordial beings before angels, demons and devils. Things of chaos. They could warp reality. Prayers are to a being that exists outside time and space, can exist in multiple places at once. Cults that follow it are trying to bring about a new era of reality, they like to create aberrations and monstrosities
Feeling of dread is strongest at tower.
We head into the tower. A chill fog forms around us. Seems to have claws and the light is dimming – characteristic of haunts. Then we’re attacked. Floating orangey light that has an almost skull-like shape inside it. Oh good, a WOTW. We manage to kill it. This mist is still nasty.
Everybody hears the archon tell us about sources of evil in tower – overwhelming outside walls, moderate on threshold, and there’s a pile of rubble with a source of evil in it on northern wall. We find a wickedly curved dagger that detects as evil.
Rena thinks the haunts are possibly a load of people who were sacrificed here. Maybe destroying the dagger will release them? The dagger has helped seed the deep discord and corruption, when it was used for sacrifices in past, it gained Human Bane for 24 hours. Rena asks the ancestors for a way to clear the haunts. The doorway could be cleared by consecrating. We could try and hallow the tower which would suppress it’s evil. There is a spell called dispel chaos that might work. We could try and get scrolls for these spells, or find someone who can cast them. WE could quarantine the place and come back at a later point to try and deal with it. Rena suggests this might even be how the fey queen comes in and out. Amina smashes the dagger to pieces.

We clear bits of rubble. After a while another WOTW appears. Yellow. Fight. Killed it.

We work out that, from the lights we have previously seen, there are probably between 6 and 12 of them. This is going to be a long fight. An hour later another one turns up – purple.
Manage to kill that too. This is hard work.

Another one – blue. Killed it.

Then 3 hours go by and no more turn up. Mid afternoon. So we set off back to the shore.

Rena puts endure elements on Amina so she can swim back.

Over night we see lights but not on the island. The word has clearly gone round!

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Gozran 4712

1st Gozran 4712

Tig Tannerson goes missing, they head to Tatzlford. Melianse is able to help them that Lizard folk from the village on the Murque river took him.

They head to the lizard folk village. Face down the “ancestor spirit” and defeat the king. Rescue the boy, install a shaman for the village, and take the king back for prosecution for abducting a human child (intially for food)

Returned 7th Gozran 4712
Completing kingdom jobs, 8th to 14th Gozran 4712.

Head back out on the 15th Gozran 4712

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Return to Peacehold 21st Pharast 4712

Returned after some bad weather they return to Peacehold.

Time is spent managing the kingdom, issuing orders and letting people know about what they found out, found etc when wondering out into the wilderness.

Towards the end of this time, they are approached and asked to help with a missing Child at Tatzlford.
Tig Tannersen’s parents are distraught, Young Tig Tannersen (10 yrs old) has always been a handful. His hobby of collecting “pets” from the wilds along the riverbanks of the southern Greenbelt has placed him in danger many times, but now it appears he’s really in trouble. Tig has been missing for several days, and his parents are distraught with worry.

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11 Pharast 4712 (GM Post)

Set off again from Peacehold

11th Pharast 4712

Meet the The Narthropple Expedition. Rescued there wagon, ponies and two gnomes, they shared their map in thanks.

12th Pharast 4712

A Delicate Situation ​- Corax and Melianse at a stand off as they cut down five of her trees. Quest: Replacing Melianse’s Trees

13th Pharast 4712

The Grove of Tiressia ​ The trees part to reveal a peaceful forest glade dappled with sunlight. A small pond lies placidly at the roots of an enormous oak tree with a scattering of leaves floating upon its surface. Birdsong twitters from the branches high above.
A woman kneels by the pool, softly weeping. Her soft tears spill into the water, causing small ripples. In her grief, she oblivious to your approach. ust behind the woman and the oak tree, a satyr hides in the brush. He watches your approach intently. The satyr is wounded, perhaps mortally.​

This grove is the home of the dryad druid Tiressia and her satyr consort Falchos. Lately, their stretch of the Narlmarches has fallen prey to the depredations of a scythe tree, an evil, intelligent, carnivorous plant that particularly relishes the taste of dryad flesh. These two fey have tried to drive away the malevolent plant numerous times by themselves, but the monstrous tree has repulsed their attempts to destroy it or drive it out every time. During their last attempt, Falchos suffered grievous injuries before they could flee back to the grove. Unable to abandon her bonded oak, Tiressia tried rallying the other fey creatures of the area to assist her, but after seeing what happened to Tiressia and Falchos, none of them would agree to risk their own lives. Tiressia now hides within her tree, weeping in despair, while Falchos wrestles with the choice of abandoning his love or accepting his own inevitable death if he stays to face the scythe tree once it finally locates their home.​

Quest: Wrath of the Scythe Tree​

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14th Pharast 4712

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The sweet stench of decay hangs thick in this woodland clearing. Knotted branches of sickly trees line the perimeter, creating a thick canopy that blocks most of the sunlight and cloaks the hollow in shadow. Withered vegetation struggles to grow in ragged clumps among the multitude of bones strewn across the forest floor.​

​The thick canopy overhead reduces illumination from the sky by two steps, so that during the day the clearing has dim light. The clearing itself is 50 feet in diameter.​

A hideous, sadistic plant known as a scythe tree lurks on the north side of the clearing, using Stealth to catch wandering prey by surprise. The scythe tree is an intelligent plant but does little with its intellect other than devise new and cruel methods to torment its food once it has secured meals — dryad flesh is particularly intoxicating to its palate. The monstrous plant looks like a dark brown tree, 20 feet tall, with dark, twisted roots; a few reddish-brown leaves hang on the gnarled, wickedly curved scythe-like branches that give it its name. What looks like a long scar in the center of the tree’s trunk splits open to reveal a toothy mouth when the creature attacks.

15th Pharast 4712

Still roaming around the Narlmarches.

16th Pharast 4712

Approach the Abandoned Keep / The Ruined Keep / The Forgotten Keep on a damp, cold misty day.

Ancient elven architecture fort which was built to last, and the outpost, though now in ruins, has survived the passage of millennia mostly intact. Over the years, it has been home to host of creatures, both fair and foul.

The keep is a roughly circular walled compound made of crumbling stone overgrown with thorns and ivy. It consists of a wide central tower and four tall, narrow towers built into the walls.

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Creatures met here were a Quickling. This one called Rigg Gargadilly is a paticularly twisted,
malevolent fey murderer. Quicklings are small, incredibly swift and agile creatures that move so fast that they can effectively become invisible. Like most quicklings, Rigg is high-strung and prone to violent outbursts of cruelty.

Rigg snuck into the courtyard and hid in the underbrush, stalking the Quiet sword hoping to attack and kill them as they explored, unfortantly when he attacked he was overly gleaful and miscalculated the armour Rena was wearing. He attacked them once Amina had open the door where the Grimstalker lurked.

The door Amina opened this tower stretches high into the sky, its upper reaches hidden
in the forest’s canopy. The vines choking the tower’s exterior, which are festooned with bleached humanoid skulls, nearly obscure the dark arrow slits. At ground level, a closed wooden door hides behind a cloak of hanging vines. The northwest tower is the only one in the keep to have withstood the test of time — its walls are still intact, as is most of its
roof, though the wooden floors inside collapsed long ago. The door is of original construction and is beautifully carved.

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Grimstalker, who had a pet assassin vine. Grimstalkers look like slender elves with pale green skin that has the texture of smooth bark, deformed toothy faces, and poisonous clawed hands. This particular grimstalker dresses in a black and red loincloth and has a number of scar-like patterns on his arms and shoulders.

Rigg ran away when he was badly injured and ran to the central building – they found him again when they headed upstairs.

This wide chamber has an impressive vaulted ceiling. Though obscured in places by earth and undergrowth, the hall’s floor is crafted of smooth stone tiles in multicolored pastel hues. The walls of the chamber are decorated with faded frescoes of sylvan life, showing scenes of beautiful elves engaged in hunting, feasting, dancing, singing, and a bewildering variety of other idyllic pursuits. To the west, a graceful, filigreed stone staircase, garlanded with flowering vines, climbs to the level above.
The bottom floor of the main building had a trap which Rena managed to spiring the trap

The stairs end in a circular room featuring wide windows draped with hanging vines that offer panoramic views of the keep’s overgrown courtyard and the forest beyond. An open
circular skylight in the ceiling provides glimpses of the forest canopy overhead. The walls between the windows are carved with exquisite, delicate nature motifs highlighted in gold
and silver leaf. A riot of flowers, plants, and bushes sprout from the thick loam that carpets the hall’s floor, as if one were walking in a fantastic glade elevated high above the forest floor.

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The tower’s sole resident and current lady of the keep is an evil female fey known as a baobhan sith. Called the Dancing Lady, she appears as an alluring, graceful elven woman with alabaster skin, golden hair, and emerald green eyes and wears a flowing white gown
of archaic elven style, tied at the waist with a blood-red scarf. Like all baobhan sith, the Dancing Lady entrances creatures with her captivating dance and then drinks the blood the living.

17th Pharast 4712

Returned to the blighted hollow, retrieved items left by Tiressia. And explored the area.

18th Pharast 4712

Return to Meilianse and give her 5 of feather token (tree)
She gladly agrees to keep an eye out along the Greenbelt’s rivers for any trouble or rumors of danger.

19th Pharast 4712

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The day is not very cold for the time of year but it rains nearly on.

They come across a large oak tree which has a hollow and a man and a large cat (puma) living there.

20th Pharast 4712

The weather is not that cold for the time of year, however a storm happens during the very early hours of the morning clearing up before dawn. The Morning is clear, but after lunch it starts to cloud over and by mid afternoon is raining persisently.

They come out of the forest and into a small swamp / marsh land by the edge of the tuskwater.

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A small swamp on the southeast bank of the Tuskwater is the domain of a mysterious crone named Elga Verniex, known to travelers as the Old Beldame. Most of the denizens of the southern Greenbelt believe the old woman to be a hag and call her the Swamp Witch, believing that she sold her soul to a demon or devil for malign powers. Any time a child goes missing, the Swamp Witch is blamed, and her legend is commonly used to scare said children into behaving well or finishing their suppers.
Her dilapidated mud-brick hut squats atop a small hummock in the middle of a fetid marsh, a thin tendril of bluish smoke trickling through a gaping hole in its mosscovered roof. A wooden fence surrounding the perimeter of the mound is festooned with crude fetishes crafted out of sticks, feathers, and animal bones. A lone crow caws noisily from the top of a nearby cypress tree.​ The region around the hut is an 80 foot diameter area of solid ground, thick with bog grass and dotted with small cattail-clogged pools. This solid region is surrounded by a waist-high wooden fence, in which a single gate hangs askew. A fistsized rusted iron bell hangs from a hairy length of rope tied to a crooked post next to the gate.

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3rd Pharast 4712 (GM Post)

3rd Pharast 4712

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The day is cold, averaging around 0 °C. The skies are mostly clear, with the odd scattered Clouds. There is still snow on the ground.

shambling_mound.png During the day exploring a creture appeared in some of the folliage at the bottom of a hill. ​A mass of tangled vines and dripping slime rises on two trunk-like legs, reeking of rot and freshly turned earth.​

They take sap so that it can be given to herbalist who is after some.

4th Pharast 4712

Travel south again and hunt some food

5th Pharast 4712

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Exploring his area, when crossing the river the group are attacked by a Bbarghest is using them crossing a river to try and cull these people.

6th Pharast 4712

​The Gudrin River: The waters of this river are unusually clear; the river itself runs slow and deep, averaging 450 feet across and 150 feet deep at the deepest point​.
​Normally quite deep along the majority of its length, the Gurdin River becomes rather shallow here, creating a navigable ford across its width.​

7th Pharast 4712

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The Day is very cold (-2 °C to -8 °C, with clear blue skies)

Old Crackjaw and Arven secret fishing location.

​A 3-mile stretch of the Tuskwater shoreline rises up above the water below here, presenting a swath of 40-foot- high cliffs and limiting access to the water below. The cliff tops are thick with stinging nettles, while exploring and follwing Arvens instructions they follow the hidden trail that leads through the nettles and down a cliffside trail to a secluded pool, 50 feet in diameter, at the Tuskwater’s edge.

​Fishing in this pool has traditionally been quite good, but recently an enormous and particularly ill-tempered hookjaw turtle (a more carnivorous version of the alligator snapping turtle) has moved in to the pool. This turtle is something of a legend to fishermen and boaters of the Tuskwater—a seemingly indestructible reptile named Old Crackjaw that has supposedly attacked and killed dozens of fisherman and even caused no less than five boats to sink or flounder. Old Crackjaw has claimed this pool as his latest den, and anyone who enters the water is immediately attacked by the oversized, angry beast. ​

On defeating Old Crackjaw, they looked around: Lying half-buried in the mud on the pool’s southern shore found with detect magic) is an elemental gem (water) not far from the small amount that remains of an overconfident druid Crackjaw killed and ate.​

8th Pharast 4712

Return home to Peacehold with the pelt of a worg, a turtle shell and sime shambling mound sap and stories to tell.

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1st and 2nd Pharast 4712 - GM LOG

1st Pharast 4712

head out to deal with the Worg of east of Peacehold. The Kamelands are full of predators and hungry beasts, and the worst are those who can think and reason. One such menace, a cruel and cunning worg named Howl-of-the-North-Wind, has claimed a large section of the Kamelands as his territory; he and his pack of ferocious wolves are quick to attack any intruders, pursuing them for miles if need be to finish the job.

The pelt of the worg was taken so that it could be displayed to show the security of the kingdom had been secured.

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2nd Pharast 4712

During the next day they come across a injured halfling woman called Aria outside a hidden crack into a barrow.

​The isolated barrow mound of a fallen barbarian warrior king has stood in this section of the Kamelands for untold thousands of years. Over time, the earth near the mound subsided, opening a crack in the side of the tomb and awakening the warlord’s undead guardians, who were sworn to defend their lord and his sepulcher even beyond death. The warlord himself, now known as the Lonely Warrior, has risen as an undead blasphemy himself. Still bound inside his crypt, he rages against the walls of his prison, dreaming dark dreams of conquest and blood. Yet for all their wrath and hatred, the undead of the Lonely Barrow have relatively little impact on the surrounding terrain. This, along with the fact that the tomb is not easily distinguished from the other grassy knolls dotting the landscape, means that the barrow has gone undiscovered for many centuries. ​

In the first room there are hundreds of high-pitched squeaks fill the air as a mass of small, carnivorous bats surges forth, all of them hungry for blood. These are what almost killed Aria.

Four tunnels exit this circular chamber in the cardinal directions. Four large monstrous faces, carved from stone, leer and grimace from each of the walls between the tunnel entrances. A skeleton sprawls facedown in the middle of the room.
The stone faces as representations of the four winds, incarnated as malevolent elemental spirits.

​The Lonely Barrow is the final resting place of an ancient barbarian warlord, his name long lost to history, who was interred in this crypt. Although the warlord was laid to rest in an impressive tomb along with his loyal guardsmen, the greedy brother who succeeded him claimed his fallen kin’s magic weapon as his own, neglecting to bury the warlord with his trusty weapon. Angered at this blasphemy and the desecration of his remains, the warlord’s spirit rose as an undead menace not long after. He sought out the treacherous brother, and although the stolen weapon became broken in the fight that followed, the undead warlord succeeded in killing the brother and returned to this cairn with his reclaimed weapon; he has stood eternal guard over his tomb ever since.​

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Going out adventuring again
1st of Pharast

So, we’re heading out again. Off into the hills on a foggy and overcast day. There is a rough path.

We run into wolves. Amina gets a cracking hit in and kills the first one outright :) They’re with the Warg, we kill all of them.

We head east afterwards. We take the corpses, when we set camp in the evening, Rena skins them all. We find wolves etc avoid us, the horses are uncomfortable but not panicking.

3 watches tonight. Nothing bad happens. Rena, Amina, Cade in order.

Hilly area next day, burial mounds. We find one that is cracked open. Woman propped up on the outside of the mound – halfling, dressed like an adventurer, very badly injured. Tells us there are bats in the mound and they chopped her to bits. Her wounds are still bleeding. Rena casts cure light wounds. She’s now a lot better off. She says she can fully heal herself later. Aria – archaeologist…Looks almost like a small human child, not a halfling, but trying to look older. Light crossbow, short sword, leather armour. Rena casts again to heal her up. Rena casts barkskins, and casts light on each of us.

Apparently the first room contains a lot of nasty little bats.

Mosaic on wall depicting man fighting, being killed by small green fey like woman. Lots of bat poo on the floor. As we move in, hundreds of bats on ceiling, not cobwebbed. They start flying around frantically. We acid them to bits.

In next chamber is a skeleton, Rena Mage Hand’s its hand, gets a tarnished copper ring which is magical. We go up and to left, there’s a chamber lined with biers of dead warriors i.e. oh poo they’re skelly undeads . Then a bunch come in from behind us as well. We manage to kill them all.

Final chamber lots of carvings etc of scenes of battles. Battered as if fighting has happened. A withered corpse stands up clutching a glaive. Feeling of menace in the area. It’s a cairnwight. Type of undead, can drain energy, vulnerable to resurrection(!). We manage to kill it. Its glaive is magical, fey bane…. Ancient barbarian warlord, laid to rest with guardsmen, his brother tried to claim the weapon instead of burying it with warlord, so he rose as a wight and killed him and came back here where he’s been ever since. His name is long lost. Stone faces in trapped middle room representations of 4 winds which are malevolent spirits.

Aria had heard rumours about this, she wanted to find out more about the fey in the area. She’ll be using the cairn drawings to expand her information and take it back. She’s going to have a look around and then head back to Peacehold. We go back to the wagon for lunch and then continue onward.

Rest of hex, nothing eventful. Night’s rest.

Heading north east to an area we have not previously explored. Hilly area. In foliage at bottom of a hill, movement. Creature appears. Shambling. Immune to electricity, no mind affecting…..Don’t try burning it…..We kill it. Eventually. A herbalist had requested one shambling mound’s worth of sap so we will drain it and take it back.

Rest of day is very uneventful. Very bright day with snow on ground. Quiet night.

1 day of hunting and gathering then on into the new area. Cross the river, just as we are doing, we are attacked by a barghest, have DR and very fast to respond, outlawed by us, creature of lower planes.

We kill it, and search around and find the barest remains of some people, their bodies have clearly been consumed by the beast. 3 lots of belongings. We remember that these things get more powerful by eating innocent people. It was obviously ambushing people near the river crossing. Rest of day uneventful. Make camp for the night, by the Durden (sp?) river.

New day uneventful, weather is snowing now. Night’s watches uneventful too.

Next area is where Arven has his secret fishing hole. We manage to find it. Weather is cold, water has ice in it, -2 to -8 in water. Clear skies. We find the turtle and kill it. There’s a corpse on the beach, had a sickle, but its mostly destroyed/eaten. Dead druid when detect magic, we find something – underneath his body, just into the water, half buried in the mud, is a magical gem. When its smashed it will summon a fairly sizeable water elemental under control of the person who smashes the gem. Rena takes it. Rena mends the sickle. We take the turtle corpse up to the wagon, camp for the night and then head home.

We go find Arven and the herbalist to let them know what we’ve achieved. Arven is thrilled, and gives us a gift he found while fishing, a ring which he thinks is magical – ring of featherfalling. Elspeth the herbalist is delighted with the shambling mound sap, her herb garden is getting a bit big for her, she gives us 600 gp and 3 potions of cure moderate.

We also end up with 1200 gp from the kingdom for killing the warg.

The people want to build a monument in Peacehold to Beaky the owlbear, as a reminder of how we deal with monsters.

Cade goes out for dinner with Aria, she babbles at him about how wonderful and exciting everything is.

Next day we are asked to attend the temple as people are getting a bit worked up. Series of attacks around town, people just starting to link them, Kesten has been trying to deal with it quietly, livestock (sheep) in outlying farms have been slaughtered in pens, but now 2 people have been killed as well. Shepherd called Bevan, who we know, his son was killed, and last night a maid at the inn was attacked on her way home after her shift (in town). Mutilated, probably by man sized animal like a wolf or warg, partially eaten. Cade looks around in town, Amina goes out to the outlying farms, Rena reassures the people of peacehold. He appeals for everyone to tell their story to the guards, either eye witness accounts or second hand tales. He gets some info – both nights there had been sound of wolf howling. Occasional word werewolf muttered. People point at suspicious characters…..Attacks were all at night. Rena points out it could also be a warg like Howl of the North Wind. Rumour that town has a cult that people are joining. No-one knows exactly what the cult is.

Amina – goes out to various places were sheep were torn apart, by time get to 4th one, all been killed by large man sized creature, discover tracks of large wolf, follow to nearby copse of woods, tracks do not re-emerge, but bare human footprints come out and lead back into town, but they are obscured near town by other people’s tracks.

Cade – looks into barmaid’s movements, she left after her shift around 2-3 a.m., returns home near edge of town. Body – she’s got defensive wounds. She’s been ripped into and partially eaten.

Rena communes with ancestors – asks how best we find the werewolf before it strikes again.
So we instigate a curfew, even guards must be inside, but armed and ready. Anyone found on the streets will be guilty of putting town at risk. After dark we hear wolf-like howl.

One outside town, then not long afterwards, we hear one closer in. So we go in that general direction. Heading for the inn which has horses stabled in a tent affair outside it. We all see a skulking form near the inn. Half man half wolf form. There are 2 types of werewolf, afflicted has less control, usually hybrid form as default, inherited can choose form, have damage reduction silver, we now have silver weapons. He’s carrying a greataxe and wearing hide armour, both of which are odd. WE are well prepped and kill him. He turns back into human form, man with beard, in tribal hides, fits description of Kelids, nomadic tribe in Numeria area. We need to find out where he’s been staying, make sure there aren;t any more. Hope he came here with it, not got it here. We hope to track his movements. Manage to follow his recent tracks, leads outside of town, makeshift camp, bedded down and then got up again. Looks to be one person camp, his belongings here, camp fire, bedroll and blankets, backpack with food. Some things are missing eg shaving gear. Trail that’s older, probably early yesterday, from town.

So we head for the inn to see if he was staying there. We go up to the room of the one guest with a greataxe, barmaid says he kept to himself, hasn’t been around today, he was drinking heavily to try and stop bad dreams, he’s been here 2 weeks. He’d been having the bad dreams for a couple of weeks. He came through Drevlev Demesne. So either have have a werewolf between here and Remembrance, or it’s in Drelev. We serach his room. WE find a severed ear under his bed. Could have dropped off clothing or something. Barmaid’s ear (earring). We take his belongings and leave. Conclusive proof he killed the barmaid. Need to take body to Temple of Pharasma. We need to let Drelevs know about this.

We head out west again after a rest, and making sure people know the werewolf is dead.

Wagon caught in middle of river, driven by some stupid gnomes, now we’re trying to push it out. The gnomes are going underwater as the wagon starts to go under. We get the wagon out of the water and it starts to come towards us. They’ve lost quite a bit of the goods that were on the wagon. They are cheering at our success.

Gnomes suggest making a fire and having a meal to warm everyone up.

We move on – sounds like the trolls are not much of a problem. We move up river, we come across loggers, and a fey in the river, they’re at odds.

Melianse, is a Nixie. Green. Protect their areas , will spill blood if they have to. We get them to agree to us replacing her 5 trees (hopefully by getting feather tokens seed things from a dryad in the next hex to the north west) and them working together in future to make sure it’s for the best for everyone. Stas is one of the loggers. He wants us to help him with something, he has lost his spear to a Hodag. Magical beast with spikes, large quadripeds. Can be 10ft long. More intelligent than a normal animal. Can’t be tracked. Glowing red eyes. He saw it in the Narlmarches south west of here, 2 hexes along to edge hex, then down another row, on row with Candlemere Lake, but at the end of row. He will give us his magical spear, but its currently in the beast’s back, He just wants us to prove he wasn;t drunk.

We move on, rest of day in uneventful. We camp.

We move on. Find a lovely clearing with a pool, woman kneeling by it, weeping.

Badly injured satyr in the bushes watching us. Dryads are a type of fey, dr cold iron, tree dependent, can hide in and use trees to move around. Says she was attacked by a creature that will eventually come here and kill her when it finds her home – an evil tree that wants to destroy the forest. She says she can tell us where it is…Lehava heals them. Teracia is her name. A Sithe tree is the problem. Huge plant creature that can move around – evil version of a tree ent. It likes darker places, hides amongst trees and attacks prey. Dryad flesh is intoxicating to them. It is likely to still be south east of here. About 6 miles away.

We spend the evening there, and make sure they are healed. We leave Lehava with them. Gives us 5 x Goodberries to take with us. Cures 1 pt of healing each or is 1 meal. Next morning, Rena has changed, not green any more – there is a radiant light in his eyes and a faint smell of smoke about him.

Been going for about half an hour when we smell sweet sickly smell of decay. Sickly trees in the area, and the tree canopy is sort of mouldy and blocking out the sun, there’s a clearing ahead (in dim light), about 50ft across, bones strewn on forest floor.

Rena summons an ancestor, carrying an Aldori duelling sword. We prep for a fight. He instructs it to protect Amina. The evil tree is stealthing toward us. Some of us spot it. We set it on fire. It dies. We put the fire out. There are some things in its roots. Robe of bones, money, silver ring, some amber.

We go back to tell the dryad she’s safe.

The two fey look a lot happier and healthier. She would like to work with us and guard the Narlmarches against threats on Borders, she’s now the Guardian of The Narlmarches. Tells us location of some hidden things she couldn’t get because of the ent (2 cure mods, scroll of summon natures ally 2, wand of cure light with 26 charges – we get these when we go back to the other hex where the ent was) , plus 6 feathertokens/tree. Rena asks her about the ancient sycamore, she says she will send her satyr to look at it, so she can see what can be done.

No further adventures in this hex. We head west. The next hex is devoid of anything at all.

So we go south east to the next hex. This is the one with elven ruins/dancing lady. There’s a pond at start of river, there’s a ruined keep. Mostly dilapidated but some bits still solid. Very ancient elven design of fortification, most this age would have collapsed.

We buff before going in through a hole in the wall. Damp foggy day. Difficult terrain, inside as well. WE move slowly round the courtyard. One of the towers has a lot of rubble inside. Second tower is when things kick off. Vines and a beastie – assassin vine! Plant immune resist certain types of energy effects. Beastie is a type of fey – grim stalker. Nasty side of nature, very evil. Vines attack. Something sneaks up on Rena – its a Quickling. They are susceptible to slow spells. We manage tokill the vines and the grim stalker but not the quickling which escapes.

We head for the north entrNCE INTO THE CENTRAL TOWER. Vaulted ceiling, floor is tiled. Frescos of elven stuff on walls. There’s a staircase goes up. AT bottom of steps there is a trap on one of the squares. Mist set off by Rena. We all make our fort saves.
See some type of fey creature, baobahn sidhe. Circular room, big windows with vines, glass ceiling, motifs carved in walls. Flowers on floor. Alluring graceful elven woman in room. It’s the dancing lady. It’s a long fight. We kill her. Phew!

Move on to the North East tower. Rat swarm dealt with. Charnel house inside. Yuck.

Move on to the final tower (south east). Roof missing, vines make up a roof, is a living space for a small creature with furniture (its Rigg’s lair). Bloody scalps nailed to wall as decoration. Trap making equipment, also hidden in rafters 20ft up is an urn. Amina climbs up and finds a clay urn stuffed with coins and gems…Masterwork short sword (small). 119 gp, 131 sp, 27 cp, dozen different gems worth 1800 gp.

Then we go on and look round all the areas we’ve cleared.

Check the front gate, there is a trap on the portcullis. Rena engineers a lock so it can’t work for the next 6 hours. We loot the place.

Rena explains his attunement to spirits of the kingdom as the reason for his changes of appearance, and the different spells he has.

Under the rubble in the south west tower, we find a mithril statue of an elven woman. Is a representation of elven goddess of art and architecture.

Grimstalker in his tower locked chest, break it open, fine velvet cloak worth 10 gp, gold necklace worth 100gp, silver ring with emeralds worth 300gp, masterworked short sword worth 510gp with gems on it, 76sp, 31gp,

Dancing lady – a life sized statue of elven woman dancing worth 900gp weighs a lot, masterworked harp , a jade statuette 75gp coiling snake, ancient filigree elven water clockwork weighs 200lb, snow white bearskin coverlet worth 50gp, 2 royal outfits, courtiers outfits, wooden coffer contains exotic perfume in 3 vials 100 gp each,

We leave the fort, finish checking out the hex, then camp for the night. Then we are attacked in the night. Amina’s watch. 9 hungry wolves. Rena calls the horses in to us and sets them to ‘guard’.

Next hex along is the one that we went into briefly, go into blighted hollow and pick up the gifts from the Dryad. Rest of day is uneventful.

So we then go north west to give the tokens to the Nixie. Is now the 18th of the month.

She doesn’t want the extra token, and she will keep an eye on the rivers for us, and pass info on to Madame Gorner.

We move on again.

On the 19th, it’s miserably wet, 4-7 degrees, all day.

This area of Narlmarches doesn’t have a river or anything notable like that. Towards evening, we come across a hollow oak tree with crude furniture inside and a mad looking man with a big cat – it’s a puma. We call out to him. Rena asks for his name, but apparently he doesn’t remember it. He asks if we want to come into the dry. We go in. It’s all very basic. He plays an imaginary pipe. He is missing a little finger. Think he’s Bokken’s brother. Trying to remember details about him. He’s not a nice seeming person, we’re not entirely surprised when he attacks us. His puma attacks too while Amina is outside at the wagon. Amina kills the hermit. Rena attempts to handle and befriend the puma. He manages to get it to be more friendly inclined towards us.

Rena leads the cat away, Cade searches the tree, we agree to take him back for Bokken to see/burial. It appears he has a collection of small worthless trophies of people he has killed. He was a serial killer. We take the collection as well to see if it might help identify the people he killed.

We go on to explore the rest of the hex. We leave the Narlmarches and wander into a swamp.

Storm in the early hours overnight. Looks like we’re at the Old Beldame’s place. Rena looks all shiny and healthy and not green, he uses a spell to amplify his voice to call out to the old lady. No response. So we move up to a hillock nearer the edge of her fence. There’s a gate with a big bronze bell. Rena shouts again. A scarecrow moves around a bit in the garden, then stops again. Rena calls again, she calls back and tells us NOT TO COME IN THE GARDEN. We move to the gate.

WE tell her we’re explorers, she tells us to go explore somewhere else. We tell her we rule. Tell her about Peacehold. He asks her whether she trades and in what? She says black rattle cap mushrooms (hallucinogenic and painkiller). She keeps the scarecrow to keep unannounced visitors out. She wants people to keep out of her garden, no draining the swamp (it’s good for growing herbs), and keep the noise down. She will give us 100 gp per mushroom. They only grow in the mud pit which is apparently dangerous. She can make magic items. We agree to try and find her some mushrooms. We will finish our exploration and go back to Peacehold and see if anyone knows about the mid pits. Uneventful day other than it chucks it down with rain in the afternoon. We camp overnight. Rains all night, next morning it clears up a bit. Rena asks the ancestors where the nightly storms are coming from. It’s weather from somewhere else, not directed at us. We head home.

Weather next day is warmer, dry and sunny. Get back to Peacehold on the 21st.

WE need to let people know about the Dryad Guardian, the Keep, the Dancing Lady, the Scithe Tree, Bokken about his brother, robe of bones to Pharasma (they give us 6 vials of holy water), – Lily offers us a magic ring in exchange for the mithril, water clock goes in castle. Big statue goes in castle.

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Haven: The Founding

Following the meeting in Rostov between Rena, Amina, and Cade in July 4710 with the various political factions possessing an interest in the new kingdoms, the nation of Haven was formed within the Greenbelt.

Rena was decided as ruler of the new nation, with the following posts otherwise filled:

Councillor: Svetlana Leveton
General: Cade
Grand Diplomat: Rollo Luckovska
High Priest: Jhod Kavken
Magister: Amina Nyissia
Marshal: Akiros Ismort
Royal Enforcer: Audreyn
Spymaster: Madame Samantha Gorna
Treasurer: Oleg Leveton
Warden: Kesten Garess

In August, led by Rena, they formed the new nation of Haven, claiming what was once the Stag Lord’s Fort as the centre of their new capital, Peacehold, arranging the construction of a watchtower a little to the north overlooking the Shrike River as an obvious route for future trade whilst the lands was being cleared. A small fishing community began to accumulate on the shores of the Tuskwater Lake.

In September, they claimed land to the north, starting to clear land for the community of Fanghold, aiming for the community to be able to trade from the local farms and the fangberries that are located nearby.

Meanwhile, in Peacehold, a priest of Cayden Cailean arrived to build an Inn as a centre of the faith in the area, whilst nearby a shrine to Pharasma was built as a priest of that faith arrived to help keep an eye on the graves around the old fort. Farms sprang up across the local area, and roads were laid to help navigate through the hills.

October came and the roads were extended into the area around Fanghold as the nation expanded further north into the edge of the forest. A shrine of Gozreh was founded in Fanghold to oversee the careful cultivation and protection of the fangberries, though a poor crop resulted in a shortage of food, that was fortunately well managed.

In November, the area of forest around the old Shrine of the Elk was claimed, and clearing began for what would become the settlement of Bearhold. Madame Gorner’s “Gentlemens’ Club” was built in Peacehold, as well as a Shrine to Abadar, a paladin of the faith coming to lead that temple in helping the nation’s Magister to form a legal system and work to help build commerce in the new nation. Embassies were established both ways with the Swordlords and House Medveyd of Brevoy, and roads were extended up from Fanghold to the area around the clearing for Bearhold.

December saw the claiming of the area around the Thorn River Camp to begin the foundations for Thornhold, a sawmill built within that locale to make it a base for the new Lumberjacks’ Guild, and roads reaching up to help with transport. Meanwhile, in Fanghold, a brewery was founded to supply the followers of Cayden Cailean in Peacehold, and an academic discovery was made by the Pharasman priests.

The start of 4711 came, and the Temple of the Elk was built within Bearhold, a notable event as the High Priest of the nation came to see the fruition of his labours. Meanwhile, in Fanghold, it was learned that Fangberries make for incredible beer and the new brewery had an outstanding success.

A hopeful couple approached Rena to request the founding of a settlement of Tatzlford in the region where his company had defeated two Tatzlwyrms, offering funding towards the first major community building.

In February, the area in which moonradishes grow was claimed by the nation, whilst a shrine of Iomedae was build in Peacehold. Roads were extended into the area of the forest just claimed, reaching towards Oleg’s.

March came, and the nation finally was able to bring Oleg’s trading post into its lands. Farms sprung up across the area and clearing began to form Firsthold, named for being the place from which the adventuring company first operated from.

April was a busy place for Firsthold, as the fort was turned into a watchtower and a new store was build for Oleg to oversee. Two elves (Himoon​ and Silalia)who had asked to form a Vintners also claimed some land in the new holding, setting up their new enterprise.

Meanwhile, the area around Bokken’s alchemists’ was claimed, more farms being founded, and roads built into the area, and some over-eager settlers pushed into an area of the forest known for fey allied to Rena’s company, building a sawmill and requesting the building of another adjacent.

In May, a sawmill was built in the area near the moonradishes – though those areas were carefully marked to avoid the two crossing. The nation struck out towards the west, laying roads towards the old tatzlwyrm lair.

June saw the claiming of the area around the tatzlwyrm lair, along with a declaration from a noblewoman who had decided to move into Peacehold that she would commission a monument to Abadar to be built for the town, which now stands overlooking the embassies.

July saw construction to extend the shrine of Abadar in Peacehold to a full temple, whilst roads were extended into the western forest, and an interesting archaeological find was made in those efforts.

August was busier, as the clearing began for the settlement of Tatzlford, the area in which the company discovered the fallen unicorn was claimed, along with more plains to the north-east, and roads were extended into both areas.

September saw the ruler, now named as King of the nation, making speeches to the people, pushing for stability and growth in the nation, as the area around the old gold mine was claimed, along with more farmland to the north-east. Thornhold meanwhile demanded the groundwork of a park in their small village.

October saw the building of the park for Thornhold, as well as the claiming of more farmland in the north-east, but the greatest achievement was the completion of months of work around the old Stag Lord’s Fort, now built up to be the castle of Stags Keep. Diplomatic overtures were received from Varnhold to the east, and gladly accepted.

In November, even more large swathes of farmland were claimed, but rumours began in the south of trolls plaguing the borders of the nation.

December saw more reports of trolls, but with the weather so poor little investigation would be possible until probably March. Meanwhile, a shrine to Iomedae was built in the newly finished Remembrance Hold to the far west of the nation at Unicorn Falls, and a new general store opened in Peacehold.

January 4712 saw the opening of a market in Tatzlhold, and the continuing troll problems were offset by the invitation to a festive event in Varnhold.

February saw the setting aside of land for a graveyard by the shrine of Pharasma in Peacehold, and the building of a new Town Hall. A graveyard was also set aside in Bearhold. More trolls reports came in, and Keston and Aeryn had to deal with a feud between the churches of Peacehold.

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Establishing Peacehold

After being granted the Charter, giving them the rights to rule the The Quiet Sword had some descisions to make.

What would their community / Kingdom be called – Haven
What titles would they use?
where would they found the community, and what would they call it? They founded the kingdom on the 1st of
what ideals would like to instill in their community?
How would they rule the community, and who would hold what postions.

So the over the next year and half they would be looking to establish a strong and safe community. Meeting the demands of their sponsors who invested in the founding of the kingdom.

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