Campaign II

Conan's Journal - Day two
Escaping the Mines

My wishes for a less eventful day were far from fulfilled.

Not long after we’d left camp we came back to more dwarven looking tunnels, after a while we came to a cross roads, and at this point I lost all faith in the halfling guide, as he essentially admitted he was lost. There were very few distinguishing features on any of them so we picked a random one and headed down there we almost literally stumbled upon a goblin patrol, but before they knew what had hit them we’d dispatched the lot. I may be wrong but I even think I saw Beorn throw the goblin head he’d taken as a trophy yesterday.

I do worry about the company I have been keeping.

Not long after, we came across some rusty mine-carts, which Beorn beckoned us all into, if it weren’t for this blasted curse getting me caught up in all the excitement I’m sure I’d have questioned this course of action, but Beorn then proceeded to push us with all his might, got the carts moving, then did a glorious front flip into the back cart. we must have been moving for at least 10-15 minutes, getting faster and faster, passing by all sorts of old equipment and side tunnels. It was in equal parts terrifying and exhilarating.

With no sign of stopping we burst through a barrier at the end and lurched to a halt in a vast cavern, with huge plateaus, goblin huts, and dozens of goblins, all seemingly furious, so much so that i felt the anger course through me. I made out three larger figures together at the apex of the room, but the next few minutes were a blur, the red mist was over me. I remember charging at a cloaked figure, which I was later told was the Mindflayer Greybeard had spoken of, and with him were the Dwarf he’d been tracking and the Hobgoblin from the dream. My next clear thought was the realisation I was surrounded by goblins and the Hobgoblin casting a radiant spell which knocked all but the dwarves off of our feet, Ailwin even falling off of the plateau. Apparently the Illithid and the Dwarf had disappeared not long after I’d charged in.

Once we’d dispatched the sorcerer the smaller goblins fled, but that wasn’t the end of it. the entire mines started to shake and boulders began falling from the ceiling. Beldwin shouted us to a path out of the cavern, and with no time to think we all sprinted after him. I’ve no Idea how long we were running through the collapsing mines, just as I have no Idea how Varden managed to keep up with his armour. I even saw Erik hold his shield above his head asif it was going to help against a collapsing mountain!

Eventually we came to a ladder, Beldwin led us up and into an old abandoned manor house where we all but collapsed, I had to apologise to him for ruining his trading route, but he seemed more happy to be alive than anything else. He assured us we’d arrived in the city and that this would be a safe place to recouperate, so we set up a makeshift camp again and recovered from the dramatic days events.

Now I’ve finished chronicling this last stretch of the journey to Briffit I think I may get some real sleep, after all, the Library will still be there tomorrow. Who’d have thought I’d spent weeks in that stinking town and it only took me two days to go the long way round. Although I must admit I’m glad I didn’t make the journey alone.

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Conan's Journal - Day One
Departing Tjork

Today was a good day, after being stuck in the fetid fishing town of Tjork for what seemed like weeks, I came downstairs for my usual fish stew breakfast (or was it fish on toast, it was all repulsive…) only to find two adventurer types, a human – Erik, and a dwarf – Greybeard Shortstaff, conversing with a halfling whom I’d seen come and go with goods from the town many times over my stay, who I then found out was called Beldwin Barefoot, and had been trading with Briffit City through a series of caves and mines. I over heard them talking of traversing the mines, and so lept at the chance, introduced myself and and attempted to ingratiate myself with the group. As luck had it, one of their party (which was perhaps the biggest single group of adventurers I’d seen in my travels) had left the previous night after an altercation, so there was a spare horse I could take.

We set off and it took the best part of the morning to arrive at the Mines, at the entrance we were greeted by two statues of ancient dwarf heroes, one a great Warrior, and one a Merchant. Beorn Stormaxe (a headstrong dwarf fighter who has been Greybeard’s companion for some time) seemed to recognise them and hold them in great regard.

Without hesitation we started off down the path, the Dwarven design meant we could see fairly clearly for a good portion of the journey, we didnt come across much but old Dwarven mining equipment for some time. Eventually there was a block in the path, and Beldwin led us down a side path into a more rugged cave, lined with glistening crystals all down the hall, in some ways more beautiful than the Dwarven architecture.

After another hour or so we came into a room with a floor filled with lava, and various pillars of rock protruding out, I almost thought that the halfling had led us into a trap, for surely this couldn’t be his usual route. However, we followed, taking it in turns jumping over, using a rope to aid the less nimble among us (I tripped once, and almost fell to a firey death, but that was nothing to the lack of grace Varden showed scuffing his beautifully polished armour by jumping short and having to be pulled up by everyone else)

The noise the Paladin made must have alerted nearby goblins, as within seconds at least a dozen of them appeared out of cracks in the walls and advanced on us. It would have been terrifying but the group burst into action, The Elf, Ailwin Redwing, Skewered the archers with startling precision, Shannaya, the Warlock, was flinging curses around the room in a trance, Erik soaking up arrows from the goblins like it was nothing… The Dwarves in particular shone that fight, Beorn taking a running jump over the gap that had just nearly killed two of us, and burying his axe in the captains skull, then without missing a beat turning round to help the clumsy paladin up again as he fell down towards a firey death. Almost simultaneously Greybeard showed his magical prowess by wiping out a small band of goblins with one fell swoop, freezing 5 of them so effectively the all lost their footing and perished.

Once Beorn had claimed a trophy (a head…) from the captain we set up camp in the next room, being Eldarin me and Shannaya stayed up and kept watch incase more goblins came, In this time I studied a tome Greybeard had lent to me, seemingly taken from a priest of Asmodeus, which kept me entertained for a few hours, then I came to writing this. Hopefully tomorrow won’t be quite as eventful and we’ll have a clean trip to Briffit where I can see the Great Library.

Not long after I had put my quill down Greybeard starting shouting out in his sleep, nothing intelligible but I was concerned, he woke in a fit and rushed over to wake the half elf Salafin, who we seemed to be escorting, rather than adventuring with. After a hushed conversation I beckoned the dwarf over to pick his brains, as he seemed troubled, I asked about his dreams and he described a Hobgoblin in some distress talking to him, thinking this was most unusual, especially in the circumstances, I pried a little further, and he told me a little about a dwarf he had been tracking, who also had been seen entering the caves, only he was with what I believe, from the description provided, to be an Illithid, a Mindflayer. These rare creatures are rare and unknown so I couldn’t help much but told him what I knew and we have wasted much of the rest of the night catching up on events that had led to here.

I told him little of my history, but that I was heading to Briffit to see the Library there, which he expressed an interest in, potentially as a source of information about this strange pair, and the visions he was having. He in turn told me about how the group had come to meet, being taken prisoner, being caught in the huge magical storm a week back, and then encountering the humans since then. He also told me that they were travelling with the king-slayer, but for obvious reasons I will leave out details of this here, although he didnt tell me their aim, only that they wanted to make contact with someone in the west, hence the journey to Briffit, to find a boat.

I also found out about a somewhat tense encounter with a priest of Asmodeus (explaining the book) which had led to a brawl between Erik, Varden and an elf who has left the party as a result. As it has left space for me to tag along, I shaln’t question it too much. People are starting to rise now, I shall prepare some food and get ready to go.

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The Kingslayer
Summer, 1016

We begin: Our adventurers find themselves captured by the Catamaran Pillagers, destined to be slaves once transported to Dread Ship City. On board an old Emerald Kingdom Military ship, now a gutted and used solely to transport slaves.

Our group groggily begin to gain consciousness and make introductions to their new cell mates in an attempt to gain an understanding of where they are or how they got there. Beorn Stormaxe the fighter and Greybeard Shortstaff the wizard recount how they must have been captured whilst camping during their latest expedition into the Haunted Weald, Amroth ‘Dwarf Slayer’ the rogue was taken whilst relieving himself in the local tavern in Charcole Bay, Shannaya the Warlock was taken mid hunt near Charcole Bay and Ailwin Redwing the ranger was taken while on a lovely evening stroll at the harbour.

Ailwin being the only one amongst the group who has an understanding of the area informs the group they are either destined for prison in Emerald City or to be sold as slaves by the Catamaran Pillagers. In an attempt to learn their future fate and perhaps plot an escape the group reaches out to the nearby cells to try and talk to the other inmates whilst Beorn unsuccessfully makes enough noise to attract any guards attention.

In one of the neighbouring cells the adventurers managed to talk to two Dwarf Smithy’s, Krabrom Flintguard & Fobrol Ironbuster who were journeying back to the eastern Dwarf lands after setting up shop in Emerald City for the Summer. They were also met by a Halfling and a sullen Elf named Salafane. This group had all recently been at the Emerald City and recounted to the adventurers the recent events that had taken place.

King Frederick the 3rd is dead. Murdered in cold blood by his potion master Xambane, the group quickly assumes they must be mistakenly wanted as criminals for this murder in some way, and quickly try to find the real murderer of the King who they assume will also be on board the ship. Amroth and Greybeard are quick to point fingers at Salafane which greatly angers him.

Deciding that their fate will not be held in the hands of their captors the group make a bid for freedom when one of the guards passes their cell on a routine patrol. Beorn attempt to sieze the guard as he passes in an attempt to allow Amroth a chance to take the keys, which they both fail horrendously at. This alerts the other guards attention though they both approach the cell swords drawn, as one of the guards raises his sword in a strike attempt his arm is suddenly grabbed by an Orc in another cell and is quickly eviscerated as the Orc attempts to pull him through the bars. The other guard, showered with blood makes a quick retreat to the upper deck. The party finds a set of keys amongst the chunks of the former guard and after gearing up, set about to releasing the cells with the dwarves and another cell with a group of Elven adventurers.

The group attempts to enlist the help of both parties in their bid for freedom, the dwarves, the Halfling and Salafane (despite his great annoyance at the Wizard and the Rogue) agree. The Elven adventurers also agree and inform Greybeard that Salafane is a magic user who they witnessed hide a item before being captured and put on board the ship. The Elves then decide to go back on their word and promptly jump out of the ship during a rapidly worsening storm and the group watches as they are consumed by the waves.

After a quick search of the guards quarters, it is established that the group have infact been captured by pirates and are on their way to Dreadship Bay to be sold as slaves. The group decides the best thing to do in this situation is to lock themselves back in the cell and release the Orc to wreak havoc on the pirates while they sit in safety. This doesn’t quite go to plan as the Orc has clearly taken one too many clubs to the head in his lifetime and stands open jawed at the cell door that has just flung open by a pair of floating hands. After some encouragement the group manages to rouse the Orc into moving to the deck of the ship and after a suitable amount of time the group unlocks their cage and follows.

On the deck of the ship, it’s clear that the storm is only going to get worse and as the group makes attempts to stop themselves being thrown off the ship they can only watch as the pirates and the nameless Orc are thrown overboard and swallowed by the whirlpool which has quickly ensnared the boat.

The boat is boarded by the Sahuagin who have appeared from the sea, the group can also see a tower in the centre of the whirlpool that appears to have some sort of ritual taking place in the centre of it. After a arduous fight the group notices the ship is almost adjacent the tower and try to kill the ritualists in order to prevent the ritual from completing. After doing serious damage to one of the ritualists the whirlpool suddenly stops, the ship breaks apart and the group scramble upwards for air. They manage to find a large piece of ship debris that has the two Dwarves , the Halfling and Salafane aboard it. Krabrom Flintguard has sadly passed and the Halfling and Salafane are not far off from passing. Salafane reveals to the party that he is infact Xambane and that he killed the King out of necessity and with deep regret. He asks they complete his quest to return an item of great power to his father.

The group instructed with this new quest and stuck in the middle of the ocean must decide where to go from here…

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