Invasion!

1st Session 7/7/10
Lost and Confused

Nevym and Davith are introduced as Nevym blunders into Noah’s Inn and buys everyone drinks. Nevym shows Noah his mysterious gibberish letter, and is clubbed unconscious and dragged up to the Monastery by Noah and Davith. There Robert hands the letter to William who is very excited, and then takes Nevym in for the night. William informs everyone that the letter is from the future which is why it is all gibberish. Nevym grabs a bag and some potion making supplies while getting people to know him a bit. The following morning Noah and Robert bully Davith and Nevym into joining up to search for Davith’s lost iron mine—a mine that could change the course of history back into humanity’s favor.

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Enter the thieves

Tando and Tseli approach a village of c-people, and decide whether or not it can be stolen. They head into the village after Tseli lights a bush on fire, and they sneak into a hut. They discover an alter and decide to investigate. Tseli starts a small fire, which becomes a giant fireball and the alter appears to flash a vision of a more advanced society before it knocks her unconscious. Tando and Tseli start glowing, and tando determines it is now time to make a break for it. He runs at the altar brandishing tseli, and a light ties them down. The light then sends them to a mountain top after a short converstion. Then on top of the mountain they talk to a 4 legged pyramid who sends them to the inn.

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Tomb of Maximul
In which the heroes become less stupid

After leaving the tomb of Konrad the party returned to their mysterious friend Bath. Bath was very confused to see them and claimed not to know who they are. After some confusion, Bath realized he had been ‘asleep’ that something must be wrong. He gave the party visions of several locations: a farming village between two forks of a river, the city ruins with the giant sword, a stone mansion surrounded by huts in a forest, a village on a lake with many boats, and the circle village. This seemed to calm him down. He also showed us a path to the south and told us we would find help there.

The party followed the path and found the tomb of Maximul Kaisin, Knight of Clarity. Davith, anxious to see the fabulous stonework, went in first. Maximul was the smartest of the four ancient heroes and prized wisdom and knowledge. His tomb tested the party with a series of puzzles. In the first room there was a series of panels on the door that displayed scenes from different points in unrelated stories. There were also numbered sections of the wall that appeared intended to be drawn upon. The party tried writing the names of heroes on the wall, drawing a picture of the doors opening, and copied images from the door onto the wall. Nevyn decided to draw the story of the party in the four panels: Davith and Nevyn’s meeting, Tseli and Tando’s encounter with the C-people, the party meeting with Bath, and the party emerging from Konrad’s tomb with their treasure. This showed the tomb that the party was able to form a plot of their own, and the doors opened.

In the next room the party found five statures. A slain man, a lady, an older man, a man with a sword, and a man in armor. The party could hear voices when they touched the door or the statues and were asked to name the killer. All statues swore to their innocence and each had an alibi. The party was able to reason out a possible killer, but missed the real solution: the man had committed suicide. The tomb seemed disappointed, but allowed the party to pass to the next room.

In the third room the party was asked to name “My greatest strengths, now and forever. My greatest weaknesses, now and forever.” When Tando placed a token in one of the four nooks he felt compelled to justify his choice. Davith named the Mountains as the greatest strength due to their everlasting nature and as the source of iron. Nevyn said a fortified city was the greatest strength because it could oppose armies. Tando named the royal heir as the greatest weakness as a baby can do nothing for itself. Nevyn also called Nobles as the greatest weakness because their bureaucratic process slows progress. The tomb seemed satisfied by these justifications and allowed the party to pass into the final chamber. There the party found a pair of magic gloves that concealed lock picking tools, a cloak that makes its wearer totally silent, and a map with several locations marked on it. Tando and Tseli took the treasures as they are most helpful to thieves.

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Tomb of Helzabad and Beyond
Just how mysterious can mystery get?

With map in hand, our intrepid adventurers decided to find that third marked tomb. Of course the map was pretty old, so it was only good enough to get them in the general area. This resulted in walking up to a little town nestled next to a large lake surrounded by healthy forest. Tando played diplomat and tried to sneak up on the townies by hiding behind a tapestry he’d taken from the second tomb. Flamboyantly colored and perhaps even a little shiny, the tapestry did not aid Tando, and he was threatened at club point by a villager demanding to know his business.

Apparently Tando’s business was as lead of a troop of travelling entertainers! This ruse got everyone a safe night’s rest, and revealed that the town knew of a “Tomb of Rite.” The next day the Tomb of Rite was explored, involving lots of jumping chasms and climbing down wells, which Tando failed at numerous times and received several concussions traversing.

Tseli, consummate performer that she was, had absolutely no problems and led everyone else into a mysterious chamber whose floor resembled a chess grid. The grid had a single safe path across it, with slick and spiky tiles interspersed, and four angry looking statues. Thankfully nothing happened when everyone just crossed.

Past the chamber was a mysterious portal of flame that only Tseli could open that led to a vertical set of chambers with lots of angry critters and mirror traps/puzzles that had to be solved. Ha ha, Nevyn got hurt by almost all of them! What fun. Anyhow everyone eventually got to the top, except Nevyn, and found an angry looking lady and a man floating in a blue light in some sort of lab. More next time!

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Answering a ton of questions and not leading everyone by the nose too much

Location: Renaissance Laboratory at top of Tower at end of Third Tomb

Find Sarona, a woman
Davith mentions Bath, Sarona goes crazy
Tells Sarona what happened
Leads Sarona downstairs
Nevyn hides, follows group
Sarona seems surprised about what has happened with her “lair”
Group follows Sarona
Sarona goes magically up shaft, hits head, seems confused about the year
Tries to cast a spell on us, hand gets tangled, tries to bluff

Lead her out of cave, become assaulted by funny colored men
-female human with them
-4 men carrying clubs

Trip them into the flame

Nevyn shifts and tries to attack the female

Knife thrown by Tseli kills beautiful female revealing a hag

Men revealed clearly not to be human

Sarona less condescending toward us, answers questions:

Who is Helzabad? [ she looks over wistfully over at the floating figure], only he realized my secret, and only he gained my love. Our last quarry took him from behind. Konrad would have chopped it in two, Maximul would have seen it coming, but it was just the two of us at the end. I’ve kept what is left of his life in his body, but magic is so terribly weak now, I know not how long I can keep the spell empowered.

What were the Errant Knights?
That’s what the fools called us by their safe little fires with their thick doors barred shut against the night. Some bright young fool named us, thought it made us seem mysterious. Tried to follow us to “see our story for himself.” Ended torn in five pieces and fed to a dark-wurm. To be short, we were monster hunters. You would have only heard about those now. When we were young, especially after the great plague, the land was filled with terrible creatures that preyed on good men and women. Some ate your thoughts, some your body, most ate both. They looked like men, but acted as beasts. We were gathered together by fate, led to mighty, ha, relics to further our cause, and taken by the nose across the kingdom and back slaughtering and slaying for the good of the people. The years rolled by, and the monsters and we both became weaker. Our magics faltered, our relics gleamed less brightly. By the end only the most wily, dangerous, and hidden monsters remained. We picked each other off one by one until it was just Hel and I…

Bath’s voice led the errant knights to do his work killing monsters; Bath’s voice abandoned them.

What’s the story behind the enormous sword in the city?
How big did you say it was? There are certain legends pertaining to such artifacts, indeed there is substantial evidence that the fair city this tower stands in was built on the spot where such a thing was found. It was rumored to be an enormous magical artifact that twisted and drew the lay-lines about it creating a perfect location for magic. The only reason I can conduct my magic at all anymore is that this city sits upon a lay-line, which may well have been brought here by such an artifact. The only such object left in the known world is rumored to lie across the ocean on the barren coast of a small island chain. I know none who have seen it with their own eyes.

What is this tower?
Ah, my tower, a masterpiece… I wish I could say I built it, but no, this tower has always been a part of our kingdom. It was created a thousand years ago by the progenitor of my order. Perhaps the last light in my life in fact. It channels and funnels the remaining wisps of magical force pulsing gently beneath the city and keeps a few marvels of a bygone age alive for another day. This will be the last place of magic in all the world… and I hasten its demise by ever moment I maintain dear Hel…

-When she was little magic was on the decline
-After plague magic got stronger
-Older she got magic got weaker, can only be done in the city now [Girsu]

Magic may be bending time, magic is “extremely” strong at this time/place

Sarona clothes indicate from old time, but well made

Sarona wants us to be her minions, save the world, and show her Bath

Wants to go back to the portal that leads to her tower, didn’t seem to work for Sarona, works for Davith

Sarona appears to be wearing flaming cloak when wearing helm

Sarona disappears when Davith enters tower, tower conversation with Sarona re-happens same way, Sarona gets back up to speed

Takes Sarona to Bath, he seems very confused, refuses to talk to her, she can’t hear him

Bath says she is an older version of what she should be and should leave, bath warns us that “he knows we are coming”, “time is broken”, “Sarona should listen to us”, “time is different from our own”

Bath sends us to the city to scout, we head there

See a big thing, we walk toward it, looks like a living mountain with giant legs

Davith climbs on top, notices mountain is eating boulders

Mountain talks to us, we ask “who are you?”: Belimot

It is a war beast

Comes from far away, from the Enemy – mountain answers a few question then goes on his way

City is in ruins, we meet with a woman on the outskirts in a nearby town

We are confronted by demons demanding tribute, we are half captured, then slaughtered by Davith. Demons wanted tribute of turnips and babies.

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Circling Around

Synopsis by Tseli!

We begin to journey back to Saruna and Bath, noticing monster patrols on the way.

We fight a monster patrol led by three froggy demons. One of their shadows seems to wriggle. He dies to fire, and his shadow attacks Davith. Tando tries to bluff a magical attack on the shadow, and to his surprise magic seems to happen, scaring away the shadow (his hands glowed briefly). The patrol dies. Davith keeps a demon head.

We find a device with 4 rings, each with 4 buttons that light up when pressed.
Davith tries: enemy w/ arms crossed, city in a cloud, circle-circle, flame in a sphere
It works! We all teleport to the monastery, though it scatters us all about. We talk to the magic guy who sets up a cage around the circle.

We meet with Saruna and Bath. Saruna asks us to retrieve a magical focus (spherical and shiny) and elemental iron, then charge it up on a leyline at the c-people village. Bath seems…out of it. Thankfully Saruna also gives us hints where to find all of this stuff.

We teleport to the iron mine. We journey into the mine and find a split in the tunnel. We go into the right room and see a large metal device. In the left room is a dwelling with mining tools. Heading down the tunnel we begin to feel faint so we go back.

We burn wood and heat water in the device and go down the tunnel. Now we don’t feel faint. We find a metal cage and some levers. Playing with the levers we release some water and bang some metal together, and then the cage levers begin to work. We descend via the cage (using Nevyn first to test it). We end up in a tunnel with corpses of minotaur demons. In the tunnel is a visage that poses three questions, which Davith answers easily. A small mud-creature rushes up who seems to know Davith, claiming that Davith has been “above too long” and that he “has regressed”. Davith asks for their help getting iron, and they bring some and tunnel back up to the surface.

We teleport again and end up by the enemy city. A group attacks as we run for the circle. Tando gets his arm broken, the demons are convinced that Nevyn is Davith the Demon, and we survive to teleport to the lake village. The village people flip the circle over so the demons can’t teleport through successfully.

We head to the monastery and find demon corpses. The magic guy approaches, who has been studying the demons caught in the cage. He heals Tando’s arm almost but not quite perfectly.

We journey to get the magic focus and end up at a fortress town.

Additional Notes from Davith:
Notes from Invasion Town
The circle:

1st ring – enemies
encased in sphere
crossed arms – picked for no good reason
holding talisman
encased in flame

2nd ring
clouds over city – DANGER! HERE BE ENEMY!
mountain in a cloud – Mine
city in a cloud – monastary
clouds over a river – Saruna’s village

3rd ring
three circles in a triangle
circle connected to a square via parallel lines
circle inside a circle
two circles connected via parallel lines – gate to gate

4th ring
empty sphere
flame in a sphere – magic?
sphere with enemy in it
flame with enemy in it

The shopping list for Saruna’s item to stabilize Bath
Magical Focus, looks like a shiny orb – Village in the West where the river forks
Iron – Square in Eastern Mountains
Charge the iron on a lay-line, at the village of the C-people

A small creature, made seemingly of living rock and mud rushes to embrace Davith,
“Davith, you have returned to us! The mother-bosom of the Earth rejoices that her child returns to her arms. What are these who travel with you? Your earth-heart glows but dully, join us so that it may regain its shine.”

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The battle of Fort Town

We had barely made it inside the gates of Fort Town when the walls became overgrown with thorny vines. The villagers told us that their bravest hunters and scouts had gone to investigate strange noises in the woods earlier that day and had not been seen since. A voice came from outside the gate and demanded the treasures from the mansion.

Inside the mansion was a series of doors. The doors could be opened by setting the wheels set within them to the proper sequence.
The door with picture wheels opened for Clock, Desk, Bed
The figurine door: man points to cop points to criminal points to man
The number door liked 312 the most… 911, 812, was no good. 311 worked, which was cleverly hidden in a picture on the door.
Inside the final door was a room full of ancient treasures, most of which were broken.

We collected the mystic focus orb and were immediately beset by creeping vines that began to consume the town. Tando bluffed a golden eagle statue into becoming a real giant eagle, and Nevyn attempted to take the orb to Saruna. The eagle became weaker when it got farther from Tando, and Nevyn had to return. An Enemy, Mastema Lypes, the seventh lord of sorrow, came to get the orb from us. The mayor of the town, Lars, told us to challenge him.

The Enemy chose sorrow as his weapon. We all told our tales of sorrow. He said he was the most sorrowful because he came from a green world which had been destroyed. He is now enslaved by Grigaryxes to spread sorrow among worlds forever. Nevyn arrived and told the sorrowful story of his mother. Mastema Lypes agreed that our combined sorrows allowed us to live another day. He disappeared and left nearly everyone in the village dead.

Lars found the only other survivor in the treasure room of the mansion. Tando gave a speech about how brave souls go to Heaven. We could see the souls of the dead around us rise to the gates of Heaven. This seemed to revive the village girl. She said the villages piled in to the mansion to escape the creeping vines, but the vines crept in and poisoned everyone. She and Lars had become fervent believers in Tando’s new religion.

We left the village and returned to Saruna. Standing with her was a mysterious, well-dressed man.

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Are you asking for a challenge?!

We returned to Saruna who immediately took the iron staff and the charged orb and when to help Bath. When she left, the mysterious man drew a sword and attacked us! We seemed to be transported to an endless room. We attacked him, but only succeeded in harming each other. Tsuli put on her anti-magic bracers and was able to see through the illusion. She burned his feet off and we were able to defeat the monster. It turned out to be Samael, one of the lieutenants of Girsu!

Bath recovered quickly and told us about a plot by the Enemy to establish a more permanent hold on this world. He told us about a way to stop the ritual: Challenge the Enemy leaders!

We decided the transportation circle was probably out of commission at this point, so we began walking to Girsu. Along the way we encountered two great beasts locked in combat. One was a large, red-haired, antlered beast with six legs. The other had blue fur, steel hooves, and an alligator’s jaw. The red beast called for our help and we joined the combat. The blue beast called herself Lilin Akedian, a lieutenant of Girsu. We were able to defeat her by separating her hooves from the ground to keep her from drawing more power.

After the battle the red beast identified himself as Naraneth of the woods. He thanked us and used a gust of wind to send us closer to Girsu. In the distance we could see what appeared to be a familiar, moving mountain. It was indeed Belmont, and after he heard we had defeated Lilin Akedian he agreed to be our war steed and bear us to Girsu. Many Enemies were scattered before his thunderous charge as we approached the city.

Inside the city we were met by another lieutenant calling himself Rahab Gastrimargus. He looked like an enormous hippo, and he chose to face us in an eating challenge. His stomach seemed bottomless, but we were able to outlast him by putting nasty things in his food, giving some food to Belmont, and convincing him he could not go on. After his loss Rahab left Girsu and his servants fled.

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More Fell Beasts Fall at the Hands of Davith

The party moves into the slums of Girsu They are greeted by a procession of demons lead by Tannin Philargyrus (he is a giant human-shaped translucent sack filled with worms, wearing clothing made from treasures interwoven by precious threads, cords, and chains). The party banters with him in attempts of figuring it out. Davith challenges the demon. He proclaims that the challenge will be a contest of value. As the party debates he begins by presenting a goblet which is over 1000 years old and of clearly priceless value.
The party, attempting to rob him of its value, attempts to melt it. He becomes enraged and attacks, sweeping Davith into a grapple. Tando attempts to convince him of random things to no avail. Nevyn crushes the bugs inside of him allowing Davith to breathe. Davith uses the opportunity to take off one of the treasures. Tseli fries all of the little demons and fails to blast off another piece of treasure. The demon attacks Tando and with a little distraction from the party, Tando manages to get knocked unconscious, but not die. Nevyn unbalances the demon allowing Davith to pull out his shovel and begin mining off treasure at a feverish pace. The demon lunges for Tseli who avoids the lunge by smoke-screening the demon. Belimot is coaxed to consume the treasure as it is pried off. Finally, Tseli heats the air around the demon and moltenizes the ground causing the demon to run off in retreat.

The party heals up and begins moving deeper into Girsu and are forced to leave Belimot behind due to crowded building conditions.

They are next greeted by another demon which haughtily addresses them. The party hails him to find he is named Shedim Hypephania. Tando uses a bluff check to attempt to insult his wardrobe which only serves to infuriate the demon causing him to attack the party with a thin rapier. Davith takes point and begins fencing with the demon at a feverish pace. Tando continues to try to insult his wardrobe while Nevyn attempts to pants the demon, both to little effect. Tseli attempts to set the demon’s shirt on fire to some effect, allowing Davith to gain the upper hand for a bit. However, the demon seems to heal its wounds nearly as fast as they are inflicted. Nevyn attempts to remove the demon’s hat, which angers it greatly. In reaction, the demon throws a dagger at Nevyn, which is only narrowly avoided due to Tseli’s flame, Davith’s physical distraction, and Tando’s BS. Nevyn spends a turn healing the wound while Tseli distracts the demon with a smokescreen and Davith continues to duel with him. The next attack is a combination of Tando calling in the eagle to distract the demon while Nevyn attempts to pantz him with TK. The attack is successful enough in distracting him that Davith is able to lop off a foot from the demon greatly weakening him. The party proceeds to cut off all of the other limbs one-by-one, however they continue to grow out of the demon’s pants. While attempting to remove the pants, they bite Nevyn in the arm, attaching with force. The party severs the pants in half and are able to finally vanquish them defeating the sixth lord of Girsu. Davith loots the rapier and the dagger. Tando uses Bluff to heal himself to full.

Tseli: Unscathed
Tando: Unscathed
Davith: Wounded (leg?)
Nevyn: Wounded (thigh)

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Endgame

We next met a host of armored demons. We said we were looking for the lieutenants of Girsu, and they led us to their leader. He told us he was the greatest of demons on the planet and seemed very sure of himself. Nevyn seemed very impressed by this demon and was close to becoming one of the demon’s servants. I doubted his greatness though. We challenged the demon and he changed into a terrible dragon! Tando called on his golden eagle to blind the dragon, which worked until the dragon shook it off and melted it. Nevyn changed to his demon form and used his power of telekinesis to hurl me at the dragon’s head. Tsuli turned the stones beneath the dragon to lava, and the dragon finally gave up.

Having defeated this final lieutenant we traveled to the center of the city. There we found many shrines set around the humongous sword with demon priests performing rites nearby. At the center of the shrines there was a wooden door. The demons told us that the lord of Girsu was the only one allowed to go through the door. It was to be used to complete the ceremony to bind the demons to this world. We went through the door to see if we could stop this from happening.

Inside the door was a living tower with a living door. In the door was a much larger hallway with a living portal. In the portal was a shaft filled with floating rocks upon which were bound the forms of many people. We climbed these rocks and found an extremely old-looking Saruna. We couldn’t free her, but she told us that we had disappeared in Girsu long ago. After we left the world began to rot and she was eventually brought here and imprisoned. Tando was able to convince the chains that they weren’t strong enough to hold her and we were able to rescue Saruna. Farther up the shaft we found an older version of Davith bound on a rock. We couldn’t free him either, but I took some of his stuff since I wouldn’t mind.

At the top of the shaft was the flayed corpse of a creature Saruna identified as a magic-eater. She said it must have been feeding on the magic and life force of the prisoners. That would give the creature much power that could be used if the creature were part of a ritual.

Above that chamber was a roof where we encountered a strange creature and a stranger device:

At the center floats a large sphere, colored in swatches of red and blue. Tiny fringes of green can be seen separating the two predominant colors. About the sphere whirl several collections of shapes. A score of cube swirl about the belly of the sphere, with another two positioned stationary above and below the sphere. In larger oval patterns four tetrahedrons can be found moving around the sphere. At the boundaries of the hexagrammatic space circles another smaller sphere, while three dodecahedrons swirl gently in circles spaced unevenly between the two spheres. Between the two spheres a pair of octahedrons travel in opposition.

The creature identified himself as the lord of Girsu. He said he was able to free himself from his demonic servitude to “The Masters”. He had never met these masters in person, but could tell us that they were the ones responsible for enslaving and corrupting many worlds. He did not understand the how the device operated.

We moved about pieces of the device and it seemed to grow unstable. When the shapes were removed some very large versions of the shapes appeared and attacked us with magic. After much trial and error we eventually found it was safe to remove the shapes with the fewest sides first, and only then removing the shapes with the next fewest sides.

As we removed the final shape, the world around us grew black and we found ourselves back at the wooden door to Girsu. The city was changed from when we had left it. The demonic influence was gone, and the demons themselves were returned to their former, non-corrupted forms. Mankind was able to recover from their oppression and eventually fought against the mysterious Masters that had brought them so close to total destruction. But that is a story for another time.

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