Fury of the Immortals

On the Road Again
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – Summer, 10th year of the reign of Uther Andahar

In truth, the road to Maus is little more than a wet, spongy track twisting through endless fens.  The cloying mud creeping up the bank of the Raider’s “Road” pulls at the legs of horses and heavily spatters travelers’ cloaks.  The dense canopy of birch and white oak trees allows in little of the warm summer sun to dry your clothes.

The four and a half days of rough, damp travel does not seem to perturb monkish Jallapiere.  He seems content to sit on a wet stump or log each twilight next to a fire of rank, smoldering grass and talk while you attempt to knock weevils out of your moist hard tack.   

Jal seems disturbed that the destruction of Blackmoor appears to have come to pass – given the nature of The Broken Lands in your own time. He wonders aloud whether the Halfing’s misgivings about the University have any merit?  He says “surely the Hin will point to the destruction of Uvaeren by an apparent act of the gods as a warning to those who seek to learn the secrets of the Spheres of Power.  They certainly are sticklers for tradition.”  Still, he has a hard time imagining how working to bring the races together and improve their lot through advancing the University (“even the Orcs!”) could be anything but the gods’ plan for mortals. 

He also entrusts to you that he believes that the star that destroyed Uvaeren might have something to do with the Wyrd.  He believes it is not a coincidence that the areas where the star crashed have concentrations of the smooth, starry black stones that appear to influence wild magic.  Odd too that the Wyrd still seems to affect magic in your time based on your tales of spells going awry, strange magical storms, extraplanar monsters and portals and objects that seem to bend time, space and magic.  “Perhaps its source has outlived Blackmoor!”

He also posits that it cannot be a good sign that creatures in your time bearing the mark of the Egg were sniffing around the Mirror Shield and Fire Opal Eye.  He frowns, “They can mean no good if they seek a portal to your time and world.  Perhaps you should heed the doomsayer’s from your own time.”

He remarks again that the Raven’s Companions did a great deed by keeping the Cabal of Wizards out of Uvaeren.  “The Cabal’s obsession with the purity of magic and taming the Wyrd has driven them mad.  They say the University’s science will destroy magic, but if they can ever bend the Wyrd to their ends that will surely unbalance the Spheres and bring catastrophe – it is too much power.”

He says once you arrive in Maus, you should seek out a merchant – a Lady Nidris Sala – Skandaharian in origin – who owns several ships and is suspected of being engaged in the elicit flesh trade.  She can often be found at day’s end in the Moonstone Mask.  Jal says he will be making use of his divining tools to see if he can learn any information while you investigate.

He hopes that the dark clouds that appear to be gathering on the outskirts of Maus as you approach do not interfere with your investigation.

He also appears to avoid the topic of his dual prophecy out of politeness…

19th session –2500XP (total all sessions: 18,100)

“Blue ones are at it again.” (Ylari/Sindian; lighting is associated with blue dragons mating or battling)

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Land of the Lost
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – Winter, 10th year of the reign of Uther Andahar

Few legends or stories are known about the lost civilization of Uvaeren. Those that are told tend to focus on a central theme – the irony that the elves who were so enamored of all things astronomical were destroyed by a celestial body that plummeted from the sky.  As recounted to the party by the sad vision of Chomylla, a silvery "star" burned Uvaeranni forests and destroyed their cities before carving out the Valley of the Ancients, wherein lies the fabled City of the Gods.

It is sung that the Uvaeranni strove too far in their knowledge of the heavens and air magics – that they nearly rivaled the gods themselves.  The gods, being jealous, especially the sun, smote them down for their impertinence and to restore balance to the Spheres of Power.

The accurate star map ceilings, astrological puzzles, moon arches and glowing sun motifs deep within the Uvaeranni ruins ably demonstrated to the party the elves’ deep knowledge of the firmament.  Such artistry might be expected from that vanished civilization.

What the Companions likely did not expect to find under the forest floor were Guard Drakes magically hidden within stone columns – their surprise attack nearly rent Arwan limb from limb. They also may not have expected that the Death's Head mercenaries also secreted within that room would prove deadly accurate with their crossbows.  And, of course no one expected when retreating to the chamber of the astrological elven maids that they were being tracked by some sort of "clockwork hunstman" in the employ of the Egg and his deformed cultists. 

Only the timely reunion of Earos with the Companions likely saved them all.  As they rest with the exploded shell of their mechanical pursuer, the Companions must know that they will need to re-enter the dim, starlit chamber of the Drakes and once again play cat and mouse with the Death’s Head mercenaries.

If they do find their object – the Vault of Song -, it is not yet certain whether the Companions will seek to understand the lost sciences of the Uvaeranni and tempt the wrath of the gods or the corruption that can come with knowing too much.

Earos earned an Inspiration for shaming Constable Gherrin of Peldan’s Helm.

18th session –1300XP (total all sessions: 15,600)

“Two things are infinite: the universe and the arrogance of mortals.” (Maco Bolgee; Halfing Philosopher)

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The Double Double Cross
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – Winter, 10th year of the reign of Uther Andahar

When Niko called on Arwan to “put down” the Egg’s scaly-faced lieutenant Marquiless, the party added another double cross to a string of subterfuges that stretched from Sizen’s original lie in Three Crowns, to the ambush in Hap, to Phoedele’s betrayal of Barcero, to the party’s present circumstances.  Clearly, a deeper mystery hangs about these events like the webs that drape the elven ruins of Uvaeren where the party hopes to uncover the Vault of Song.

Likely, Uvaeren will reveal more mysteries before the Companions track down Phoedele or find their doom within.  Already, Niko, Arwan and Filandriel found themselves in mortal danger when spindly, spider-like humanoids wielding as many fast blades as their four arms dropped upon them from the dark, upper reaches of a collapsed, ruined hall.  Were it not for the Egg’s glow-eyed, mutated minions taking the brunt of the assault, the Companions might have ended up as cocoons suspended from the wall like one of Phoedele’s unlucky mercenaries.

As such, Niko’s earlier decision to infiltrate the Egg’s minions, rather than confront them at the cabin in the woods, may have saved his and his friends’ lives.  It remains to be seen whether the search for the Vault will require further life and death decisions.

Earos found he had to make a life and death decision while travelling apart from the rest of the party.  Reaching the western turn of the Champion River he fell from his horse mid-crossing.  It is difficult to say whether the icy water or the carnage on the south side of the river caused the chill that gripped his core.

Leaving the scene of torn men and women and pushing westward, Earos discovered a group of whole men, women and children – though hungry, tired, exhausted and nearing the end of a long journey from Bloodstone.  Some were nearer their journey’s end than others…

Their tale of woe and strange murders in Bloodstone was pierced by a bloodcurdling howl which forced Earos to decide whether he would rush to save the mass of refugees or a woman and children.  Ultimately, it was no decision and Earos fought two, massive, white-furred wolves to a standstill barely surviving.  The few refugees that survived the lupine attack will eventually carry on to join the community of Three Crowns.

Mayhap only Ixion’s light is powerful enough to illuminate the dark corners of these enigmas born in the 10th winter of Uther Andahar’s reign.

17th session –1400XP (total all sessions: 14,300)

It's like trading with Minrothaddans." (Common: Fighting an uphill battle.)

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The Diamond Stiff
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – Winter, 10th year of the reign of Uther Andahar

The party rode forth from Sildonis’ tower in Hap with an eye to preventing the meeting between the mercenary Phoedele and her employer “Barcero” – a Thonian necromancer in league with the Wizard’s Cabal.  Their horseback journey to the “Ghost Hold” of Sandersal Manor was cold, snowy and uneventful, but their evening there was anything but.

Sandersal must have once been an elegant three-story, fortified retreat for a Thonian grandee, but had fallen on hard times since its abandonment to Skandaharian raiders and transient beasts.  Stealthily creeping through the burned timbers of the collapsed manor, the party found little remaining intact apart from a small coffer containing gems in the ruined watchtower.

With little to hold their interest, Arwan led the Companions to the rear walled courtyard of the house.   He found it occupied by a man wearing exotic, velvet, black embroidered robes guarded by three bald, pale, gray-skinned creatures bearing sharp, elongated teeth and claws and smelling of the grave and two muscular, tattooed and pierced guards bearing blunt weapons. 

The man paced about the small room incessantly and occasionally poked his head out of its doors to look about the courtyard.  After watching this for a while Arwan concluded the man must be Barcero and concocted a plan to sneak in through the stable’s broken window and surprise the corrupt gathering before Phoedele arrived.

As Arwan dragged himself quietly and slowly through the empty window frame, holding his breath, every muscle tense and ready for the coming violent confrontation, the room suddenly exploded with a thunderous roar.  A shockwave sent Arwan flying back into the courtyard nearly knocking him insensate.

Earos had opted for a different plan in which he turned himself into an invisible, arcane bomb.  Naturally, a chaotic melee ensued between Barcero, his guardians and the Companions.  By its conclusion, Barcero had fled through a summoned portal and the party managed to capture one of his tattooed thugs. 

Under interrogation he revealed that Phoedele did not show as intended, presumably double-crossing Barcero and making for Peldan’s Helm to seek out the Vault of Song’s secrets for herself.  As the party planned to set out for Peldan’s Helm in the morning to catch her, Earos rode off into the night with the captive towards Jackport.  Separating himself from the party at great risk to himself, Earos made clear bringing the Thonian agent to justice was his highest priority.

16th session –950XP (total all sessions: 12900)

"Just wait until the 29th." (X will never happen – Mystaran months only have 28 days)

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Hap Happening
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – Winter, 10th year of the reign of Uther Andahar

The Raven’s Companions pointedly downed their ale before dashing out of the Millery Inn door to face an orcish attack in the dimming evening light.  Between Arwan’s twin rapiers, Filandriel’s deft arrows, Earos’ endless thunder magic and Niko, the party ended the threat to Hap in short order.  Though not before Niko turned into a plant – an example of the wild magic, or “Wyrd,” that permeates parts of the Northlands.

While Earos remained in the village to help battle a burgeoning blaze, the rest of the Companions trudged off through the mud and snow towards the shouts and sounds of battle coming from Sildonis’ tower at the base of nearby Haptooth Hill.

Arriving, they found a raging battle underway between several orcs and a beserk guardian, Sildonis unconscious and gravely wounded, and the apprentice Drindol locked in the cottage at the rear of the tower. 

The party managed to defeat the orcs as Niko stabilized Sildonis.  Earos arrived just in time to heal and rouse the Wizard of the Wood, so he could keep his rampaging Flesh Golem from crushing the life out of Arwan.   With the immediate danger over Sildonis and Drindol pieced together how several orcs had stolen an elvish artifact – the Diamond Staff of Chomylla – and fled before the Golem could stop them.

Filandriel tracked the orcish raiders to a cave just a quarter mile north of Haptooth Hill.  Discovering horses inside the cave entrance (which the party thought odd for orcs), Earos noisily tramped inside bringing on an attack from the rest of the inhabitants – more orcs and a few human warriors and mage.  The humans’ clothing bore a symbol of a lightning bolt and skull and the orcs appeared to have sharp, animal teeth embedded in their hide gauntlets.

After a battle with more Wyrd – this time Earos glowing brightly and blinding friend and foe alike – the party discovered a letter on the dead mage.  It suggested that a Captain Phoedele had fled the cave with the Diamond Staff to meet one Barcero at a “ghost manor” on the coast near Archlis.  It appears the party will need to interrupt this rendezvous to recover the Diamond Staff and the key to lost, elven knowledge.

XP is awarded as follows:

15th session –1420XP (total all sessions: 11950)

The Immortals bless the sage who leaves before the storm.  (Ylari common saying)

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Cloaker & Dagger
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – Winter, 10th year of the reign of Uther Andahar

Finalizing their plans for Three Crowns, the Raven’s Companions rode forth from Blackmoor town into the snow and mud of The Raider’s Road.  They encountered little on their four-day journey save biting wind, flurries and one disheveled, filth encrusted traveler who pointed them to the Old North Watchtower.  Of course, he warned them they were seeking their dooms. 

Arriving shortly after dark at seaside, a friendly fisherman named Kibar poked his head and lantern out of his small cottage to offer the Companions assistance.  He laughed off the suggestion that the ruined tower was haunted – prematurely it seems, as a low, mournful, moan from the tower sent the Companions fleeing in panic.

After they collected themselves, Niko and Arwan crept into the basement of the tower where they discovered a strange diagram on the floor and a recently burned black candle.  Almost as soon as they entered the room a black, fleshy manta-like creature swept down on Arwan from the ceiling engulfing him.

Arwan was in serious danger struggling for breath and being bitten.  His friends heroically managed to free him from the creature to which Arwan administered the final killing blow.  As the battle came to an end, Filandriel snagged a young man fleeing the second floor of the tower.

He told the party he was Sizen, apprentice to Sildonis, Wizard of the Wood and friend to elves.  He apologized for an attempted summoning gone awry.  Earos put the young man to work helping to build Three Crowns as the planned building of the town was soon underway.  A few days later he was permitted to finish delivering his master’s messages to Maus.

Five weeks later, after the final stone was laid in Three Crowns and the Companion’s officially dedicated the town, the party rode off in search of Sildonis at the village of Hap in the south of the Elf Wood.  Baik Telor was left to tend to their flock. 

They found it odd when they arrived that a young, blonde haired boy named Drindol, not a young dark haired boy named Sizen, served as Sildonis’ apprentice.  They did not have long to ponder whether the summoning was really an accident before the town smith burst into the inn  to announce that Orcs and wolves were attacking Hap!

XP is awarded as follows:

14th session –1300XP (total all sessions: 10530)

“Trust No One and Keep Your Dagger Handy" (When discussing the Thyatian Senate)

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The Knight's Watch
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – Winter, 10th year of the reign of Uther Andahar

Once free of the Comeback Inn, the party, now calling themselves The Raven’s Companions, set about to bettering themselves.  Nikolaj immersed himself in the scholarly world of the University, Earos spent time with Alwyn Morland learning the songs and legends of the Northlands and Arwan, nay, Sir Arwan, spent his time practicing sword craft with the formidable Rissa Aleford.  The usually taciturn Rissa occasionally even seems to smile at the idea that she correctly assessed the Companions' characters when she vouchsafed at the Inn.

Taking a break from self-improvement, the three also made ample plans to turn the Old North Watchtower into a bustling trading stop and defensive position.  They hope that the new town’s position alongside The Raider’s Road halfway between Blackmoor Town and Maus will make the planned for Knight’s Fall Inn an essential stop for any traveler. 

Sir Arwan and his companions will call the town Three Crowns in honor of their partnership and their mostly closely held principles.   King Uther was delighted to learn that the Companions plan to repair and reinforce the watchtower against Skandaharian pirates and the Egg’s minions, provide a guard and militia, build extensive dry docks and even build a school and amphitheater. 

As the founder of the Blackmoor University could only be a proponent of education, King Uther has decided to pay for a teacher for the Three Crown’s school out of his personal estate.  And, for making a most charitable gesture, he has named Earos the “Schoolmaster of Three Crowns.”  The King made it plain that he wishes the rest of his nobles to take lesson from Earos’ generosity.

All that remains now is for the Companions to scout the ruined fort to ensure it is safe to begin building their dream.  Verily, though the ruins of the Old North Watchtower do rest on the edge of what some northerners consider a haunted fen, such rumors are unlikely to dissuade adventurers of the Companions’ singular daring.

XP is awarded as follows:

13th session –1400XP (total all sessions: 9230)

"Corunglain wasn't built once." (Darokinian saying, refers to optimism in the face of adversity.)

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The Return of the King
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – Winter, 10th year of the reign of Uther Andahar

After the daring rescue of King Uther the Rectifier from the Prison Out of Time, the fame of the “Travelers from Far” has spread throughout the Northlands – in no small part due to Earos’ ballads of original composition.

They tell of how Earos blew the Iron Duke’s soldiers off of their feet with thunderous magic that nearly shook the Inn apart.  They tell of how Niko felled Dubonino the trickster by summoning a terrible serpent.  They tell of how Arwan sheared his way through the Iron Duke’s vaunted soldiers with his twin rapiers and they tell of how he took The Warden unawares running him through as he tortured the King in the Inn’s tower room.  They also tell of how brave Arwan was grievously wounded by the poisoned dagger of the beautiful and traitorous Lola Dafin.

Earos’ ballads also tell of how King Uther took to horse to confront the Egg’s forces almost immediately after being freed.  He drove them back from Blackmoor’s borders while Rissa Aleford, Baroness of the Lakes, rode forth to drive off the Iron Duke’s forces.

With his borders secured, the King’s mind turned to justice.  With the other conspirators dead or exiled to an unknown time, Lola Dafin, the Thonian songstress, was tried for the murder of the barkeep Wallingford Batts and her part in the kidnapping.  She was hanged on a chill early winter morning.  With her last breath she cursed Earos to the Nine Hells for laying a hand on her.

Naturally, King Uther was more than pleased with the party’s bravery and many rewards were showered upon the party.  Arwan was knighted and given the right to bear arms and mete justice within the Kingdom of Blackmoor.  He is also being considered for the title of Bailiff of the Old North Watchtower.  Earos was offered a stipend of 30GP per month to keep The Fetch informed of any news during his rounds of the Northlands.  Nikolaj was given the run of The University and its research facilities.

Nikolaj earned an Inspiration for scaring the pants off of all of us.

XP is awarded as follows:

12th session –1980XP (total all sessions: 7830)

"More axes to grind than a dwarven smith." (common Known World saying)

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Go Fetch!
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal – ????

With smoke rising from the outlying villages of Blackmoor, it became clear to all in the Inn that the need to locate King Uther was imminent and that everyone’s’ lives hung in the balance.  It appeared it would be no more than a day or two before the Egg or Iron Duke’s forces laid waste to all in their path.

In such dire circumstances, the party naturally turned to drinking, arm wrestling, brawling with other guests, seducing other guests and re-arranging other guests’ possessions.   

Along the way, they did pick up on the juicy gossip that some within Blackmoor (particularly Timothy Curlytop the halfling) believe that the University and its “science” will lead Blackmoorians away from Ixion and risk the sun god’s ire.  Barnabas the Wanderer interjected that Uther’s obsession with finding the great, silver City of the Gods and using the University to copy its magics were blinding him to this folly.

Despite these diversions, the party somehow convinced Lola the songstress’ manager – Dubonino – that they were eager to make their exit.  He then admitted to them that he had a “helper” that could get them all out of the Inn through the Gate.  All Dubonino requires of the party is to “take care of” some guards along the way. 

Instead of using this information for their own gain, they reported it promptly to The Fetch.  The Fetch believed that someone who could readily move through the Gate to an intended destination (which he had not previously thought possible) might very well have abducted the King using the same means. 

As such, he readily agreed the party should go along with Dubonino’s plan and offered them two potions to aid them.   He bade them not tell anyone lest they tip him off.

Not knowing what lies on the other side of the Gate – the party will need to rest and prepare for their excursion.  Certainly, they will have an easier time relaxing than Marfeldt the Barbarian, who is currently being “questioned” in the matter of being in possession of a soul stealing lute.

Earos earned an Inspiration for sneakily framing Marfeldt the Barbarian in an act of petty revenge and convincing the master thief Scotty Debelfry that he is a prophet.

XP is awarded as follows:

11th session –400XP (total all sessions: 5850)

"Dodgy as the displacer beast." (common Known World saying)

 

 

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The Once and Future? King
Fury of the Immortals

Campaign Journal –  ????

After using the mists of the Comeback Inn’s basement gate for more than just cooling ale, the party found themselves in a tricky situation.  Stepping through the gate, the party had returned to the Inn, but not as they left it.  Instead of a dusty, empty Inn that only housed a few odd corpses and abandoned jewelry, they found an Inn crowded with life.   It also appeared to no longer sit atop a rocky outcropping in the desolate, sulphurous Broken Lands.  Rather, it sat in a quaint city in a lush, hilly land under the watchful eye of black stone castle – leaving the party to wonder just where and when they were. 

They quickly learned the Inn’s residents called their land Blackmoor – a land that the party’s research had told them existed in Mystara’s distant past.   Though purportedly an ancient kingdom, the sharp, polished halberd blades they met upon exiting the gate seemed as new as their own blades.

After being disarmed by one Jallapiere and several guards, the party was interrogated by the Fetch – the “Peacekeeper of the University of Blackmoor.”  They learned that Blackmoor’s King and liberator – Uther Andahar – had recently gone missing from the Inn and that the Fetch considered the party suspects.  He doubted their protests of innocence due to the unusual nature of their arrival and the fact that Nikolaj bore the mark of the “Egg of Coot” on the palm of his left hand.  The “Egg” is apparently just one of Blackmoor’s many enemies massing forces on her borders in the absence of the King. 

However, the party managed to pass examination under the light of Ixion earning their release to the Inn’s common area and baffling the Fetch.  They are trying to find the King in the few days before Blackmoor is sacked and they along with it. 

Needless to say, the party has already made an impression on the “guests” of the Comeback Inn and learned some useful information:

  • The comely lass Alwyn revealed to Earos, after strenuous questioning, that Marfedlt the Barbarian once famously robbed the Merchant Guild of Maus.  She never did find her purse, leaving Earos to conclude she is, in fact, broke.
  • Nikolaj learned from the beady-eyed, rodent-faced Miklos that Scotty Debelfry is the master of the Thieves Guild of Maus and knows the value of a hostage.
  • Arwan met two Sellswords in the employ of said Scotty Debelfry who claimed to know naught of the King’s disappearance.

It remains to be seen if the party will recover the King in time for him to rally his forces and strike fear into Blackmoor’s vulturous enemies.  Then, they may be able to figure out if they can return to their own time and those that would miss them.

XP is awarded as follows:

10th session –700XP (total all sessions: 5450)

"Vanished like a coin in grey ooze."

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