Ravens Bluff, The Living City

By Dawn's Early Light
war# 13 LC3 - 74

Players Present: Kodaly Bela, Mok the Powerful Wizard, Rowan Brightsword, Omegasun, Sir Dresden N Drumheller, Tiberious

NPCs Present: Charles Oliver O’kane, Lord Mayor, Charles Frederick LaVerne Blacktree IV, Lord Speaker, Major Thomas Devillars, Lord Knight Humand T Stillers, Tim, Timothy

The final battle for Raven’s Bluff took 6 days. A hard won fight that could easily have gone the other way had it not been for a strange ally, a group of dwarves, coming to our aid in our time of direst need. With the aid of our allies, we were able to fight back the enemy and claim the day. I doubt many will call this a true victory until time has worn away the painful memories of all that was lost.

Most of the citizen’s who were unable to fight had been gathering in Memorial Park that final day as if something in the air told them this would be the end one way or another. With flashes of magic in the distance, they waited to know their fate. The flashes and sounds slowly dimming a short while later General Blacktree rode into the park and every person there let out both a sigh of relief as well as a cheer.

The leaders of the city quickly assembled and the crowd quieted momentarily as Blacktree confirmed what everyone already knew. The enemy had been driven back. Medals and Ribbons were awarded and the crowd’s cheers could no longer be quelled. The Midnight Menagerie members in attendance watched the events knowing that their role in the war both harmed and eventually helped save the city they love. as the watched several officers making their way through the crowd and all knew they still had a part to play in the aftermath.

It didn’t take long before the Menagerie is approached by Officer Thomas Devillars who ushers them to somewhere they can speak more privately. It seems the city once more has a job for us. we are presented with 3 objectives: 1. If possible find the leader of the enemy forces (Jolan). 2. Look for any signs of Charles Oliver O’kane, Lord Mayor, 3. Rescue any prisoners that might be found.

We were also given a few other instructions. If we found any enemy troops while on our mission we were to disarm and disarmor them and then let them go on their way. This also applied to any troops we found from our side that appeared disoriented or out of their wits. Lastly, we were instructed to leave all magical belongings we found at the raven estate alone but we were to bring back and evidence that could be found that pointed to Raven’s involvement with the Enemy forces.

We were given very few resources other than a little knowledge on where to head out too. The instructions we were given did not sit well with all the members of the menagerie however when the city needs our help it is our duty to answer the call.

As we set out to prepare ourselves for the coming mission we received word of several special events going on in the city. The first was the several Bags of Holding were available at our favorite Magical shop, The second was that the Temple of Mystra was allowing brave souls to pull cards from a deck of many things to help raise funds for the city. A little reluctant at first the members of the menagerie finally gave in and pulled cards, the money was for a good use after all. While most of the members saw minor improvements and changes a few had some dramatic effects take hold of them. Our Mighty Half-orc Wizard burst into flames and died before our eyes.. only to be resurrected moments later as a lizardman…. yes a lizardman. Sir Dresden seems to be moving much slower than before, our favorite Butler now HATES visitors and strangers, Rowan seems to have fallen Madly in love with Mok, and Mr Pointy can now talk on his own.

Once the draws were made the group set out towards the battlefield near the Fire River. As we traveled closer to Raven’s estate we could make out a dark cloud on the northern horizon there seemed to be an aura of magic about it with lightning, fire, ice and acid all seen swirling within the clouds. Pressing on holding fast to our mission we came upon the battlefield at last. Thankfully very few human corpses remain on the ground most were int he graves that littered the landscape. After prayers were said and the dead thanked for their sacrifice the party moved on continuing north towards Raven’s Estates.

As we reached the Other side of the battlefield we found a fisherman pulling what seemed like an unusually large amount of fish out of the river. It seemed as if every throw of the net brought at least one. We spoke with the man for a while who seemed to be enjoying himself noting he hadn’t been able to fish for so long. He was able to provide us with some information about the magical cloud. “it was magical and it messed with magical stuff” though not as informative as one might like it did let us know that we should be careful with magic while under the cloud.

After traveling a bit farther north we came upon a group of 8 soldiers. 3 wore the livery of Raven’s Bluff the other 5 looked to be mercenaries from the enemy army. One of the members of the group introduced himself as Lord Knight Humand T. Stillers of Raven’s Bluff. After a long conversation with the group, most of the Menagerie felt confident that Lord Knight Stillers was sound enough of mind to remain armed and armored without any danger to himself or others. The other 2 members of the Raven’s Bluff army would be sent with Lord Knight Stillers to finish scouting the area. The fate of the mercenaries was a much longer discussion. Sir Dresden spoke with his god and was able to determine evil did not lie in the heart of the mercenaries. Lord Knight Stillers felt it would be a death sentence to send the men away with no weapon or armor. Tiberius strongly felt as we had agreed to the job and part of the agreement was to disarm and disarmor any enemy forces that we should stand by that agreement regardless of what could happen to the men after.

Many valid statements were discussed on both sides and with Sir Dresden’s knowledge and the Lord Knights insistence, most of the group agreed to allow the Mercenaries to disarmor but keep a weapon. Not knowing what the men did after they left makes me wonder if it truly was the right thing to do. just a week back these men would have been slain were they stood had we come across them. As for their hearts not being evil I often think, If a man steals the crop of a small farm for no other reason than to cause a hardship on the farmer, some might consider that man evil. If a man stole an equal amount of crops to feed his starving family that surely would have died had he not, he would by most standards not be considered evil. The farmer in both cases no longer has enough food stored for the winter and his family suffers because of the loss. The men we let go that day were not evil, yet, I still pray our kindness in letting the beleaguered men leave armed doesn’t result in suffering from those who had no part in the event. As a saying I have oft heard on the road goes, desperate men do desperate things.

Once the band of soldiers was dealt with the Menagerie continued on its path to Raven’s Estates. We arrived with no further incidents and upon doing so we heard an engine like sound coupled with the sound of dying men coming from a barn-like structure. We immediately set out to investigate the structure and lend a hand to those obviously in need. We found the structure locked and all doors reinforced with steel. Sir Dresden was able to fly Tiberius up to the roof of the structure where a small window was present. This allowed Tiberius to enter the barn through magical means. Once inside Tiberius noted the injured soldiers and made his way to what appeared to be a large pile of dead men to investigate. After a long period of silence, the group started to worry so Mok, using a chime of opening, led the charge through the front door of the barn. The group immediately went to assist the injured prisoners and ensure their safety. That was until a strange blue camel like creature entered the barn. Knowing the prisoners were healed enough to no longer be in danger and recognizing the groups own danger in straying too close to the disenchanters that now roamed to barn the group scrambled or flew away from the things. Mok and Rowan having some knowledge of the creatures began hurling spells at the beasts until those inside and outside the barn were satiated on the magic and wandered away.

While Tiberius conjured food and water for the prisoners the rest of the Menagerie made their way to the nearby cemetery to look around for any clues as to where the enemy might have gone. We found a what appeared to be a recently created mausoleum and decided to check it first. the door was already ajar so we opened to find a note that indicates it to be the tomb of Timmy one of Raven’s apprentices. It is signed by “Tim the Archmage of Raven’s Bluff”. From previous dealings with the Menagerie, we are aware that Tim was also once the apprentice of Raven and several pieces slowly start coming together. Exploring the rest of the cemetery we find several other tombs, the first had a plaque naming it the tomb of a Warlord known as Oraniston who died in the year 675. As the MEagerie did not want to be remembered as grave robbers we left the tomb undisturbed and moved on to the next. The second structure contained a magical talking plaque who alerted us that the tomb belonged to Warlord Hastrigor who passed away in the year of the fiend’s kiss. We also learned that Warlord Hasitgor was an evil man and that the plaque was sort of a guardian over the tomb. We once again left the tomb alone and move on to the third and final tomb.

We knew there was something odd about the third tomb as soon as we approached it. Unlike any other tomb this tomb was barred on the outside and looked like someone or something inside it had tried to escape. As it was obvious this tomb had been disturbed before we arrived we decided to force our way through the barred door in order. With everyone alert and weapons drawn the door was opened to display a small room with signs of extreme physical abuse. An emaciated figure lay in a clump on the floor. As we all slowly drew closer some of the man’s features seemed familiar even in this state and we soon realized we had found Charles O’kane. With all haste and to the best of the group’s ability healing was applied to him. With our best effort, we were able to heal his body however his mind remained broken. Knowing we needed help as quickly as possible, Tiberius cast a sending to Raven’s Bluff in order to call for help for the Lord Mayor as well as the prisoners. as we had not yet explored Raven’s Manor we set Rockcrusher and Godrick to guard the Lord Mayor O’Kane and to watch over the prisoners as we explored the manor for any additional clues.

Inside the building the sound of insults were audible from a room at the end of the entrance hall we approached with no regard for stealth walking directly into the room. Inside we found Tim. Tim seemed to believe that Raven was dead. When we told him it was not so he grew enraged and went to attack us. Tiberius managed to stab out with his spear first only to find its point deflect off Tim’s skin. Before anyone could do anything else there was an explosion and a burst of flame. When the light faded Bela and Tiberius lay injured on the ground. We quickly stabilized and used some of our final healing to help them recover. The only thing left in the room was the throne and a small box. Inside the box we found notes exonerating Raven of any wrong doing. Pocketing this evidence to give to the city we made our way to through the rest of the manor. We were thankful that the rest of the manor seemed to be clear of any enemies. At last, we came to the vault to find the door slightly ajar. Inside a body lay on the floor. It looked like it had been burned from the inside out and a message was scratched into the floor next to it " Jalan, No Magic must be".

Having completed our mission as best we could we returned the mayor and the prisoners to the city where General Blacktree debriefed us. He also gave the group 2500 gold worth of gems from his private stash and several ioun stones for a job well done.

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The Value of a Miracle
LC 3-73

Players Present: Kodaly Bela, Omegasun, Rowan Brightsword, Jorktah (sorry if I misspelled this Frank!), Warhawk Starson, Tiberius
NPC’s Present: Charles Frederick LaVerne Blacktree IV, Lord Field General, Cyden, Deputy Mayor Such and Such, Mr Pointy, Myra, Hathmar Blademark

It was early mornin’, i had just come back from assistin’ Mok with some short business from out of tha city, I be informed by a somewhat curious yeng man that me presence be requested at tha office of Field General Lord Blacktree. Upon arrivin’ I find myself greeted by most of tha Menagerie, a few new members. I stand in tha doorway awkwardly for a moment before greetin’ everyone and goin’ ta find a seat. Seems thin’s had nae gone well for tha Menagerie on it’s last adventure while Mok and I were out. Tha wheel of life moves on and life sags with tha weight of time. But stone be resolute, time for us ta redeem ourselves.

I also met another Knight of tha city, Warhawk Starson, he seemed a nice enough fellow, a Paladin like Dresden, though perhaps a bit different in strict philosophical views I gathered. Either way, I did nae talk with him much, but he was greatly helpful upon tha adventure as I shall note. Apparently he had assisted on a previous mission that I did nae attend.

We be eventually invited in, inside we find Lord Blacktree, a Priest of Lathander named Cyden, and tha Deputy Mayor. We be informed that tha war nae be goin’ well, enemy has recently begun ta press it’s advantage against tha city. Surprisin’ly though Pirates have been helpin’ tha city by brin’in’ supplies ta us. Ir was also brought ta our attention that Divine Spells above 2nd level were nae currently functionin’, some sort of disagreement between tha various gods. Nae matter, as tha Midnight Menagerie we wou’ overcome any obstacle that laid between us and our goal.

As tha discussion took ta it’s main focus we learned that in a desperate bid tha city was plannin’ a Center Offensive in 7 days, in an attempt ta find ways ta bolster tha chances of success tha Deputy Mayor and Lord Blacktree had been seekin’ additional assistance. Which be where Cyden came in, he had experienced a vision from Lathander where a Dwarven Army was seen in an underground cave near three shrines ta three different Drow gods upon it. Tha vision gave Cyden tha knowledge that tha army cou’ be used ta help save tha city from Myrkyssa Jelan’s dark army. I must admit, it bothered me whiskers ta imagine an entire dwarven army underground just like that, an oddity. Even more strange, tha heradly seen by Cyden was that of none other than me newly formed ancestors, Clan Brightsword! It wou’ seem foolish ta assume any have survived, but chances be always abound, nae, it was best ta sit and wait. Trepidation and fervor be good when needed, but problematic when used without regard.

Upon some discussion we decide ta head ta Rift’s and tap Dresden’s new girlfriend (I shan’t judge), Myra for another guide. First stop was Midnight Keep, as we needed ta git into tha vault for some gems (those underground tend ta prefer them) for potential payments. Of course this meant findin’ Mok, which we did nae do, but we did find tha next best thin’, a certain Master Hedgehog name Pointy. This was nae before sittin’ down ta eat breakfast with Cyden though (we were waitin’ ta see if tha Powerful Wizard wou’ show himself). Durin’ breakfast Cyden “delighted” tha Menagerie ta a discussion on tha nature of torture. A fascinatin’ discussion, I’m sure, that I missed a great deal of while spendin’ time in tha little Dwarves room. But it sounded like Starson and Tiberius from what I heard got into it at one point. I’m sure tha others had their thoughts ta say as well. As for mine? Well, that’s for another time.

After Mr. Pointy showed up, though nae Mok, we acquired tha gems, saddled tha horses and were on our way. Leavin’ tha city through tha South Gate we traveled for roughly 20 miles. It was a day full of oddities as while one wou’ expect heavy enemy resistance durin’ tha travels we met none, in fact tha only thin’ that was seen was a Halflin’ boy who fled tha party. This lead us ta a group of travelers who were tryin’ ta make their way ta Raven’s Bluff. We tell them tha way be clear, offer them food, and a large Pavilion (courtesy of Sir Warhawk) for tha evenin’ before partin’ ways.

Eventually we make it ta Riff’s, meet with Myra, only ta find nae one around who ken act as a guide for us ta take us where we need ta go. This unfortunate bit of news was saved by tha timely arrival of none other than Hathmar Blademark, who we had inquired into previously. Apparently he was in tha area on his own business but had heard that we were lookin’ for him and had taken upon himself ta see what tha Midnight Menagerie desired. We request a guide and he humors us and agrees ta lead us for part of tha trip. Before leavin’ Cyden brin’s ta tha groups attention a third philosophical quandry, whether ye wou’ kill an unborn baby ta free a larger group of people trapped ta die in a cave? I believe tha majority of tha party voiced support for tha unfortunate activity, I myself included.

Oddly most of tha party, includin’ myself were quite famished at this point and continued ta be ta some degree or another, nae matter how much we ate. We were thankfully able ta brin’ enough food with us for our travel below tha surface ta sustain us though.

We continued on for quite a while under tha unerrin’ guidance of Hathmar before he finally left us. Continuin’ several members voiced suspicion that thin’s were nae quite what they seemed, though we had nae real proof of anythin’. Other than hearin’ tha presence of a Purple Worm (we think) crawl near us tha trip went uneventful. We eventually found tha cave with tha three shrines, at which point Cyden seemed ta become very agitated shoutin’ about his visions, runnin’ through tha room ta another beyond. We quickly followed after him, nae wantin’ anythin’ unfortunate ta happen ta tha poor Priest, where we find him standin’ in a large Cavern with a dropoff. Below we see tha bones of hundreds, if nae thousands, of dead dwarves. Tha ancient remains of clan Brightsword.

We be then informed by Cyden that he had nae be fully honest with us, that tha Dwarven Army was long dead and in order ta save tha city we wou’ need ta sacrifice ourselves ta brin’ them back. Bela stepped forth immediately, with tha rest of tha party soon followin’ suit, Rockcrusher and I givin’ our lives for our Dwarven brethren as well. Tha fall was quick and relatively painless from what I remember, I still have twin’es in me right arm from tha remembrance of landin’ on it.

Then we were nae more, and then we were everywhere. Our spirits fueled tha dead bodies of tha Dwarves and through what were assuredly powerful magics, tha dwarven army was on it’s feet again. Nae wastin’ any time we marched our Dwarves towards tha city, attemptin’ ta brin’ aid as soon as possible. Nae a moment too late did our forces arrive, able ta join into tha fray, some of us splittin’ into tha city ta clear it’s borders, tha rest workin’ ta hit tha enemies from tha flank and assist Lord Blacktree’s men. A slow battle ensued but tha combined might of tha city and Dwarven army was more than tha Dark Army cou’ withstand (we also had a Black Dragon assistin’ us for some reason, strange indeed) we routed their forces and helped save tha city.

Then we were alive again, strange it was, and Cyden was nae more. Tha party gathered itself and left through a secret entrance near tha cave ta be confronted by Cyden, only ta learn that he was an avatar of Lathander (which explained a lot). He thanked us and explained a few thin’s before teleportin’ us back ta tha city.

Once back at tha city we be greeted by Lord Blacktree who congratulates us on our actions and hands out awards and tha like.

Experience: 2800
Loot:
+500 Gold→ Each
1x Cure Serious Potiion→ Each
Potion of Fly → Omega
Potion of Haste → Jorktan
Potion of Dragon’s Breath → Jorktan
Potion of Cure Serious → Bela
Holy Water (x5) → Bela

Ring of the Ram (10 Charges) → Omega
Boots of Springing and Striding → Tiberius
Banner of Clan Brightsword → Rowan (Grants a +1 Morale Bonus to nearby clan members).
Order of the Raven (City Honor) → Tiberius, Omega
Floral Crown (Knightly Honor) → Warhawk, Rowan, Jorktan

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A Walk on the Wild Side
War #12 LC3-72

Players Present: Bela Frandor, Omegasun, Tiberius
Players Absent: None

Having recently been rescued by the [[Midnight Menagerie Guild Charter/Bylaws | Midnight Menagerie]], I Warhawk Starson decided to see what they were all about. I was led to help them in their next adventure. We were called into the Wild Magic Minister’s office of the Ministry of the Art. Her name is Glora Varro. She asks us to take a box from another mage named Gideon, and to go around and help remove areas of wild magic. We have to power the box with magic and then set the power of the box, push a button and hope for the best. Sure let’s do this, it will make the city safe and more defensible.

We set off and we’re barely out the door when the building next to us is struck by a giant boulder, we’re not sure of something carried it in or what, but we were not near the front. This wound up being my good experience with the Midnight Menagerie. They rushed in to help rescue the people in any way they could. There was no thought to their own safety, there was no figuring out oh I should cast this spell on myself first, except where prudent. The helped rescue everyone they could, except for the one lady who was definitely dead. We continued on for the wall where the first area was.

We get there and there is a giant fight, no pun intended, with Giants, Bugbears and trolls. Our defenses are lacking due to the casters not being able to cast because of the wild surges, Frandor is left to power up the box and we head up the wall. Bela takes the westernmost farthest away spot where ladders are being raised, I have the middle, and the others have the East. Cerulean and I take the middle, and while I wanted the east, someone was faster to get there. A couple of fire giants charge the middle, but they are rebuffed with the help of Cerulean. The west does ok as well. The east. I’m not sure about this Bela character. Wild magic surge after wild magic surge turns him into a gnome and blinds him, yet he keeps calling upon the bufuddled magic. If Mystra were to ask me, I would have to say his choice of using magic contained poor choices. That’s the only thing I have to note for Mystra. The box was powered and instead of curing the wild magic, we made a dead magic area. While not out best option, magic not functioning is better than every spell turning someone into a skunk, or aging them, or something of that nature. So a very small positive. We leave the wall heading onto the next spot.

We head off and find the next spot, with a page with globes dodging him everywhere. The globes were created by the next magic area. I make my way to the boy, and find out that he is terrified. I also discover that the globes can be burst with my massive shield. I work on breaking the globes, and the others soon follow suit, this leave us just the boy and having to clear the magic area. We succeed and in talking to the boy find out he is a runner for the city, and he was attempting to fly to deliver some magic items. Without thought Frandor makes the boy able to fly. There is no thought to, does the boy have a flight license? Can he control his flight? I bring the subject up about their careless use of magic, and I get rebuffed with, well if he was casting fly he must know what he was doing. I should have countered that with, well if you know magic, you must know how to power the box and not create magic dead areas, right? Just because you can pick up a sword, you know how to integrate with an intelligent weapon?

We head off down the road, and we get to GIdeon’s house. This winds up being a rather easy clearing of a wild magic, which we turn into a dead magic area again. Again a careless casual use of magic.

Finally we arrive at the docks, and we find a man guarding a house in an area that has been evacuated. Well inside is his wife, and she is about to give birth. Here is a moment of goodness for this menagerie again, they rush inside to help while a couple of us stand guard in case the enemy comes to this area. The child is delivered and the wild magic is cleared. We get tipped off with a vision about being people held captive, it comes, and it goes, so we head back to turn in our information, and the box, and report our results.

While speaking to Glora Varro, we find out she is the person keeping people captive, and the group decides to attack her? That may be incorrect, she figures she is not going to get away and attacks us. She wipes the floor with us with a prismatic spray. I only escaped by flying through the window in the ceiling, and going to get reinforcements. Frandor did not make it, but eventually the rest were able to eventually be returned to normal, but that is another story.

My thoughts on the menagerie. I would not recommend a single one of them to a knighthood. While their hearts show goodness and a willingness to jump right in, their decision making was casual, and when confronted, blown off, without a care or thought for what was said. I’ve been around this city longer than most, but I’m not sure if it is the spirit or the letter of the law they embrace. I did not get to meet their defacto leader Mok, perhaps he is their proper moral compass.

My hope is that if they are one of the groups picked for the next coming threat, the use of the Heart of Bane against us, that they act differently.

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Seeds of Discontent
LC 3-71, War XI

After an announcement in the Trumpeter that among other mishaps of war, the famed knight and guard captain, Sir Warhawk Starsun, had been captured, the Midnight Menagerie was summoned by Lady Mayor Amber Lynn Theoden. Our task would be to rescue him and restore him to his rightful position as the Guard Captian of the Night Watch, as well as a leading light in the Knights of the Griffon and the Phoenix.

First information led us to believe that Sir Warhawk had been captured by a debased organisation, calling themselves the Order of the Black Phoenix, led by a fallen knight of the Phoenix and member of the faith of Lathander, Lord Nivek Sopel. Rumours have it that he has become a death knight, although he is thought to have been destroyed.

On our way to the Temple of Lathander for further information, we come across a great dragon attacking the citizens of Raven’s Bluff in the streets. After dispatching it, it is noted that it bears a medallion with an embossed citadel around it’s neck. In the Temple, we learn Sir Warhawk was kidnapped while performing guard duty, quite possibly by a dark brotherhood operating out of the “What Ales You” tavern in Crow’s End. The leaders of this group are a monk and a rogue, and they have been recruiting.

The tavern is a feral place, with oily light and people ranging from down-and-out to proper perverse. It’s a crowded place, and inevitably Omegasun finds himself flirted with by a wench called Trista. Although she was more attractive than one might have expected to find in a place like that, he declines her offers of hospitality with some effort. [We later learn this was a very good thing, as she was actually trying to enchant him, and use him against us had she succeeded.] We learn that the citadel on the dragon’s medallion is like the same as the mansion where Lord Nivek Sorel’s organisation has it’s hideout – a formerly grand place, not too far outside the city walls.

We set out in force to the mansion, although moving carefully. The place seems utterly deserted, although we encounter a mongrelman who claims to be the abandoned butler of Lord Nivek. We set him free and heal him, and learn that Sir Warhawk has likely been dragged to a sacrificial alter underneath the temple of Lathander, the tunnels to which start in this mansion.

The fight in the ritual rooms is fairly frenetic, since the cult is there in great force, but we prevail and free Sir Warhawk Starsun, who seems not much worse for the wear – much as one might expect of a Mystran knight of great experience and grace. We deliver him back to the city that sticks to the light, and decided to go find a more pleasant tavern to have an ale.

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The Orcslayer Scroll
LC 3-70 (War #10)

Players Present: Mok, Bela, Rowan
Players Absent: None
Players Missing: Talon

Our group is hired by Zarrack a cleric of Tempus, to guard the first Caravan leaving the city to the north in months. The war has shifted to the south of the city and while this is going on, some dignitaries and other people are slipping out while the getting is good. Additionally the clerics of Tempus advised of having found some lost information on a metal called Blood Metal that is damaging to demi humans and humanoids. The information was on a scroll from deep in Sarbreen, and as it turns out another group of adventurers found the scroll, and on their way back to the city were ambushed and it was taken. The scroll is believed to be on the caravan, however since the people are dignitaries and representatives of other nations, they can not be searched without just cause, so the group is there to protect them, and to see if they can find what happened to the item.

The dignitaries are as follows:

Porter Hillburrow, a halfling returning to Sembia, and sent to ask Sembia for aid in the war.

Mestaphanis, a wizard going to Waterdeep to meet with Khelben Arunsun and to seek aid for the city.

John and Estelle Pranulis, a family who lost their 3 daughters in the first week of the war, and they want to remove themselves from the pain of remembrance, returning to their homeland in Cormyr.

Atul, a minor prince of Calimshan, he has a couple of servants, and he wants to return home, he was trapped here on a tour of northern realms trying to strengthen ties when the war started.

Tishen Enterprises -

Josten Tishen – Elder Son
Selven Tishen – Younger Son
Tellack – Business Advisor.

They have several goods from their time in the city and they are returning back home to Amn to make a profit, and see if they can help the city in any way.

The first day – There is not much that happens other than the party makes some small talk to try to get the ball rolling on the Orcslayer Scroll. Well that would be a partial lie, the druid turns into a dinosaur and scares the horses causing a stampede and a broken wagon that needs repaired. In the evening it starts to rain and the group makes camp. The rain stops, and camp continues normally. Rowan notices that the wizard has a wig and a tattooed head underneath it, and the halfling sneaks back in while Mok was on watch, he went to smoke a pipe just out of range of the light of the camp, and to look at the stars, but was not as stealthy when he came back.

The next morning while getting ready to leave, a small group of ogres finds the group, but they are easily dispatched. As the group travels there is another group of ogres that attack. These are dispatched as well, except that an archer attacks from the other side killing Josten. A silver arrowhead is left behind, and the group remembers that that is a symbol of the person who attacked the original orcslayer scroll group. The party does not follow the tracks of the people that got away. They continue onward. Next they find a note that implicates the halfling with the thief that stole the original scroll. The group stops the caravan, and investigates, talks to him, and he denies all involvement, allowing his entire wagon to be searched with nothing unusual found.

Then the group continues hearing moaning from the high grasses, expecting an ambush they continue on and hand the caravan off to the Tantras guards that pick up the Caravan for the second half of the journey, everyone made it except for Josten.

OOC: There was a lair to find of the thief, and Tellack had Josten killed and had the Orcslayer scroll. Josten was killed because the younger son will be more manageable. The group being so small they felt they couldn’t go investigate things, and so things were missed, still the main goal of keeping the Caravan safe did happen.

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The Longest Night
LC 3-69 (War #9)

The usual suspects get hijacked to meet up at Castle Ironguard, where Belanor Femarel and Lord Blacktree explains there’s trouble at Sarbreenar (a village on the road south towards High Haspur, and Procampur beyond). From what is understood, the village is used as a marshalling point for enemy troups, with a supply depot in the neighbouring hills to support it. Our goals would be to disrupt this, look for a mage who has been keeping track of army movements with a Crystal Ball in Sarbreenar, and keep an eye out for former inhabitants of the village, now likely prisoners of the enemy.

This plan is … reinforced by some special training with the Church of Tempus, who put us through the works. After a tenday, we are all sore, mud-covered and down to the intelligence of your average bugbear, but we’re now officially proper special forces material by Tempite standards. Weaponmaster DaeMonde Vochette officially said so.

We gather to get dropped off by giant eagles (which is a nice touch – wouldn’t mind getting to know those a bit better). None of the shoddy magic items they’ve handed us malfunction, thank Mystra (although I suspect she’d have something to say about the mediocre workmanship!), and we air-drop in near the enemy encampment. Lots of ogres and some large tents, presumably containing the supplies. This is where our vaunted professionalism takes a step back, and the training we received from the Tempites comes in, since we supplement scouting with kicking the door in – loudly.

Suffice to say, it wasn’t smooth, but we made it. They had some invisible, flying support from ogre mages, who almost managed to take out Mok with twin Cones of Cold. I am eternally thankful that he’s not only mighty in his use of the Weave, but also as tough a wizard as one could wish for by your side.

Those two ogre mages manage to escape, my best efforts notwithstanding (it’s not easy to track in the sky, even if you’re flying and able to see invisible people), so we prepare to tackle Sarbreenar. Hopefully, there won’t be too much in the way of reinforcements there, after the amateuristic way we handled the supply depot. Seriously – next time, we don’t sink to the level of our opposition.

Sarbreenar was a nice little town. Was, mind you – right now, it has gaping holes in the walls even those ogres could slip through, and several ruined buildings. Always pains me to see the cost of war borne by those who never had a say in it’s execution.

Anyway, we scout about, find the building the enemy mage is likely in, and prepare a distracting attack while I go for him with fire in my eyes and stars in my hand. It proves somewhat futile, since he’d fled already, but we route them otherwise and look for our options. After a short deliberation, we settle upon trying to rescue the missing villagers, who are likely holed up in the mountains nearby. It’s tempting to go chase the wizard, but the chance of catching one that doesn’t want to be found is very small, and it would mean countenancing letting the victims of this war starve in the harsh weather.

The rescue operation goes fairly smooth, making good use of Teleport and some bags of holding to bring them initial supplies from Raven’s Bluff. In the end, they are too afraid to go back to life on the front lines, and we escort them to Procampur, where we provide for their initial wellbeing. We cannot protect them there eternally, but we can do our share to give them a chance to protect themselves. Goodness knows they never chose to be in this situation.

Well, Operation Ogre Grace was a grand success at the end of the day. I sure hope we learned something from it, since I can think of a Plan B to make things go a bit smoother next time.

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Renegades!
LC 3-68 (War#8)

Lord Chancellor Arvin Kothonos requests your presence to save some people from some renegades that are hold up in Goldspire. It was an old mining hole the dwarves tried to use it lately but with a purple wurm set up there and the yield for gold so low they left it. We were told that there is a back entrance but we will have to go into the underdark. We were given a few things to help us a mystra vile of oil incase we are blocked by magic, a map, and a bag of waterstars since the underdark likes gems more than gold.

We started toward the entrance to the underdark that is close to the gold spire mines. On the way we saw a burnt out farm house. We thought we saw someone by it, so we decided to take a look and we found a trap door. We found Kyree, Tyra, and Becca hiding there. Their father was killed by some people who looked somewhat like us. But we talked to them and they knew Sir Dresden and the kids wanted to ride his griffin. So we talked them into moving to Procamper and they said yes. So Mok teleported them there and made sure they were all set up.

We finally got to Rifs place, where we think we can find a guide to the mines. While we are looking for a guide Sir Dresden flirts with a female Drow named Mira and they set up a date. We then meet Brother Evan and he wants to sell us a sword and we buy it, but no one touches it and we put it in a magical sack. We finally find a guide his name is Dent and he is an undead person. Who will guide us if we get rid of his curse. He leads us to the mines and we remove his curse and he dies right there. So we enter the mines and we hear breathing then Mok sneaks up to go look and comes back with a goblin name Grink. We talk him into leading us to where the ugly people are and he helps us avoid some traps. Mok again sneaks up and finds the renegades and blows them all up. We find a door with some old dwarf runes all over it. We are about to use the vile of oil but Mok figures out the puzzle. We find the people we are supposed to save. Kellen Dirk – A half-orc swordsmith of great strength and some fighting skill, Anders Merton – Ostensibly a trader in spices from Sembia, Beryl Greenmoor – A half-elven wizard, and Ravian Gaunteler – A mercenary captain.

We get them back to Ravensbluff. We hire some of the people who we saved but the mercenary walks away and Beryl becomes Mok’s apprentice. Best of all Grink becomes our butler. We discovered that the sword we bought was cursed, containing the soul of a medusa, and had to destroy it.

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Housecleaning II-2
LC3-66-2

We pick back up after a week off, due to a sick DM

The group having slain the white dragon, they move through time once again. This time they are 55 years in the past where the first halflings came ashore and having survived some horrible storm, they decide to make a temple to Tymora and set up shop here. The groups job is to make sure that still happens.

When they appear they see a ship off in the water under a big storm. The ship is being tossed and turned and amazingly holds until a giant shell comes up underneath it. A dragon turtle has sank the ship. The halflings run (swim) for their lives and the group jumps into help them. Talon has a great day and scares the Dragon Turtle away. But this leaves the storm, no one quite realized the storm was alive, and was some elemental storm. The group eventually dissipates the storm and the halflings still choose to set up shop.

Next time shifts and the group finds themselves in the midst of the champion games. Lady Lauren Devillars is supposed to give her favor to Captain Charles Oliver O’kane, but she is supporting someone named Morganchild. Well through the groups help, they figure out that Devillars is under a spell, and they break the spell, and get her to return her favor to O’kane, finding out that Morganchild is a Rakshasa and is an ally of the Cult of the Dragon and does not belong in this time. Everything is right, and the group returns home. Time is fixed, but of this draws the Red wizard back to normal time as well.

A battle ensues with some summoned abyssal creatures and the red wizard, who does that thing that wizard’s do, and teleports away.

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Whistling in the Dark
Living City at War VII LC3-67

[Present: Ellie, Talon, Rowan, Sir Dresden, Bela. Joe was our Gm, due to illness from Andrew.]

Some people will believe anything. Worse yet, some people know this and abuse that faith. And then there’s the bastards that use the Art to force others to do their wiles. Damn if I won’t go for their juggular. Next time, though, I may need to make sure the backup’s in place before jumping into the frying pan.

Anyway, better start at the beginning.

The lot of usual suspects (i.e., the Menagerie), minus Mighty Mok who was indisposed with the Guild, got called over to the Lord Chancellor’s office, where Lord Arvin Kothonos handed us a job seconded with the local Tempites. Seems a scouting party had come upon the plans to a magical catapult that could do some serious harm to the city walls, and we’d have only a few days to stop it from reaching operational parameters. Off we go, tromping to the Temple District, where the Tempites had their headquarters this time around. No, I don’t get it, either, how they keep moving it around.

On our way to the Tempite HQ we ran into a rabble rouser, trying to convince the local population that the war was still going on, solely because the Tempites weren’t suicidal enough to fight without the rest of us by their sides. Couldn’t make it up, but a fair few of the poor schmucks actually lapped it up, as a cat to cream. Aren’t they supposed to actually understand sensible tactics as a mandate of their God? We take a look at some leaflefts, argue a bit with the people, and get the crowd dispersed. That seemed too easy, and it was.

Next station, the Temple. We get our briefing at will be leaving in the early morning. We will stay with the company there, and some of that nonsense in the market square has spilled over among the various acolytes. Not a whole we can do, since we’re guests. We retire for the night.

In the morn, we set off for the estimated location of that contraption. It’s going to take a few days’ travel to get there, so we make good speed on our horses. A few hours outside of Raven’s Bluff, we run into the Prelate Julio of the Tempite HQ with a full crew of brand new acolytes. Blistering idiots had set out overnight to seek glory and redemption. They are with Tempus now, presumably, but I think he’ll have some words to say to them about abandoning your post during a war. Still, Stirges are a nasty way to go, even if it didn’t take us all that long to get rid of them.

We work our way around some random battle we didn’t need to get entangled in and make camp before the final push to the catapult’s location. Rockcrusher (Rowan’s tame megafauna) woke the lot of us up at night because there was a strange noise at night. Good thing, too, since we had someone launching Greek Fire on our location, by the barrel. That wasn’t a lot of fun, even if I saves on waxing, I figure.

Anyway, I’m the first out of the fire, and run smack into a group of invisible or hidden thugs, who try and do to me what I tend to prefer to do to them, first. Fair’s fair, they gave it the old college try, but they were’t all that good. They have this well planned, though, and a small squad of mages start to take pot shots us, pinning us down as we deal with the swarming vermin. This is where things get ugly, since we notice an actual priest of Cyric in the background, trying to zap us into unlife with the black arts. Fuck that, and I tell him so. That was, in hindsight, perhaps not my smartest quip, and a chaos knight comes over to knock me straight into the turf, teethering on the edge of consciousness. I manage to get off an Invisibility spell, thanks be to Mystra, but the bastard takes a wild stab at where he thinks I am and smacks me straight into darkness.

Well, it’s good to have friends, tried and true, and Ellie by this point is laying down the glorious heals as she is wont to. Gods, I love her dedication to the Arts. Her ways aren’t mine, but I owe her my life and I don’t forget stuff like that. I come to, still shrouded by my spell, and take a moment to patch myself up a bit before laying into the black knight with the Fires at Midnight. Get a good hit in, but the bulk of the fight’s being handled by then by Rowan, Sir Dresden and Talon Frostbreath (our newest recruit, and a pretty damn impressive draconic sorceror). it wasn’t a fight I shone in, but there’s days you just need to accept that the team is what matters, and I am grateful for mine. We mop up, and prepare to prioceed with the actual job at hand.

This is where I get my once-a-day smart idea, and I check around for stray magic. Damn if the pamphlets we found in the city weren’t enchanted. Bloody Church of Cyric was undermining us from the inside, and they got close to getting the job done, too. Still cost us Prelate Julio and some recruits, but it could have been so much worse. Also explains how they managed to find our camp and land the sticky stuff right on our noggins.

Well, all’s well that ends well. We stopped the worst of it and the Bluff is safe for another week or so. Hell if I won’t play Catch! with the next Cyrikite, though.

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Housecleaning II
lc-3-66

players present: Dresden, Bella, Mok, Ellie, Talon

Cerephane had a 50% off sale but we are broke and could not par take in it.

We were summoned buy Lorian to fix 4 points in time. Ellminster has given us rules to follow and mice in a cage that will open the portals in time for us. We must fix the Forming of the Clan of Brightsword, Peace between Clan Brightsword and the Elves of Highbank Forest, Wreckage of the Windfinder and the Champion Games. Also as we travel through time we must get four tokens to put on the mice to get from place and time as needed.They are pennant from the dwarven chief of Clan Gemsplitter, the quill used to sign the peace accord, Sand where the first survivor reached the beach, and a link from O’Kane’s chainmail or if he is not wearing chain mail then a thread from the favor given him by Lady DeVillars. Scroll found near the ritual engraving in Lady Caroline’s home, read with a read magic spell.

So Lorian opened the first portal to the forming of the clan. When we set foot though the portal we were meet with a shadow dragon. We fought with him for a long time and Dresden died in the battle. After some time of battle the dragon left the fight and Ellie prayed to the gods and used her powerful staff to resurrect Dresden. We finally found the dwarves and they where breaking camp and complaining about the Clan Waraxe not staying and fighting. Rowan told Hundrel that it was not right to help fight with his dwarven brother. So Hundrel chanllenged Rowan to a duel. Rowan won “although he almost died” Mok gave Hundrel’s sword to the chief of Gemsplitter and in turn he formed clan brightsword. he also gave us a pennant. So we placed it on a mouse and off we went to the next point in time.

When we stepped through we were met by a band of elves who told us to follow them to the Peace accord. Once there, a few elves went off to find a some missing elves. The peace accord should go off with out a problem both sides want it to happen, but to make sure it does, Bella had the leaders share in some salt making them friendly towards each other. The first copy was signed and then it hit the fan. An elf appeared behind the leader of brightsword and drove her sword through him then screamed at us to follow the plan.Then elves and dwarves started to fight everywhere. 7 elves came at us and we defended ourselves. In the midst of the fight a white dragon appeared. Mok went off and screamed “NO MORE DRAGONS” and he unleashed his fury on the dragon.In the middle of the fight the elves attacking us turn in to manscorpions. We won the fight but were unable to save the clan leader of brightsword.The elves and dwarves finally listened to us about it being a set up and still signed the peace accord. We got the Quill and are ready to go to the next point in time.

We were also given information the a Red wizerd of Thay and Cult Of The Dragons are working together to undo these points in time.

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