The Roll'n 1's and 2's

The East Wing
Where goblins dare not tread.

Excavation Site

An intense debate concludes with a tenacious round of rock paper scissors. The party decides to head down the corridor and through the door to the east. The door creaks open and a flight of stone steps descends to the level below. As the party reaches the bottom of the stairs, they can see the room ahead of them open up. Shadows can be seen moving around in the flickering torchlight. Between the party and the room ahead of them lies another set of steps to the right. The stone steps are carved out of rock and descend into darkness. The rogue is shoved forward to scout ahead.

Peering around the corner into the chamber a curious sight is revealed. The goblins have obviously been busy at work because roughly half of the chamber has been excavated. The excavated area is ten feet below the level of the original floor leaving several plateaus around the room topped with the flagstone floor and connected by rickety wooden planks. The walls of each plateau and the floor are bare earth. In the northwest corner of the room is where the goblins have obviously piled up the excavated material. There are a couple of ladders leaning up against the plateaus and a ramp has been constructed leading from the hallway plateau down to the excavated area below.

Three dirty leather clad goblins are busy at work. With crossbows slung across their backs, they swing picks and haul loads of dirt back and forth while two guard drakes sit alertly nearby watching for signs of trouble. The goblins grumble among themselves something unintelligible. However, it doesn’t take a cunning linguist to tell that they don’t like their current duty.

With a flick of his wrist, the rogue hurls a shuriken at one of the goblins. The whirling blade narrowly misses the goblin and clinks off of the wall behind him. The goblin immediately looks up and focuses on the rogue, in one motion he raises the crossbow and fires, yelling out goblin vulgarities with hatred in his eyes. The drakes spring into action, one racing toward the ramp with the other running from the back of the room to join it. The goblin at the back of the room steps onto a wooden plank and carefully makes his way to the next plateau where he opens fire with his crossbow. The third goblin disappears out of site behind another plateau on the dirt floor below.

The rest of the party takes the cue and charges out of the shadows. Noname and Celekyth are greeted at the top of the ramp by an apparently irritable guard drake. The result is a flurry of gnashing teeth and flashing steel. Cirrel and Aquarian move out to the edge of the floor just before the drop off and unleash fire and brimstone. The rogue runs across a wooden plank to the next area of floor. Seeing trouble coming, the goblin quickly kicks the plank off the ledge and it clatters to the floor. With a curse regarding the goblin’s mother the rogue lets loose another shuriken.

The goblins respond with a barrage of crossbow bolts from the east side of the room. Meanwhile on the west side of the room the third goblin climbed up the ladder and promptly kicked the board off the ledge. He returns fire with his crossbow. The second guard drake joins the first and they push Noname and Celekyth back. Cirrel and Aquarian return fire to the goblin that shot at them. The goblin drops as his mind is assaulted while his body is simultaneously engulfed in flames. Watching his comrade go up in flames, a goblin drops his crossbow and jumps down behind the plateau. He draws his short sword and heads for the spell casters.

Gritting their teeth Noname and Celekyth push the drakes back down the ramp. With a mighty cleave the warrior brings his blade to bear on the shoulder of the drake nearly decapitating it. Moments later the warlord thrust his sword into the heart of the creature and it dies while still stuck on his blade. Without taking the time to clean off their blades, they jump to side of the spell casters. Seeing the goblin making his way towards them they jump down to greet him. Celekyth, with the grace of a swan, catches his foot on the ledge and falls to the dirt floor head first. The opportunistic goblin thrusts his sword into the side of the prone warlock.

Amidst the fury of battle, one of the goblins has unloaded a flurry of bolts at the heroes. The rogue jumps down to the dirt floor and heads for a ladder. Running up to the base of the plateau where the goblin is he slams the ladder into place. He ascends the ladder, and as he hears the top he comes face to face with the goblin. With a smirk he kicks the ladder backwards causing the ladder and the rogue with it to come crashing down to the floor. As he reaches for the ladder again a bolt lodges in his shoulder. He hefts the ladder again and sets it back into place. As he begins to climb the ladder again, he can hear the rest of the party shouting his name from behind him.

Spinning around he can see that the party has all they can handle with the goblin. The bloodied warlord is parrying blow after blow but is getting weary. Seizing the opportunity, the rogue sprints across the floor and lunges into the back of the goblin leading with the point of his dagger. The last thing the goblin saw was the point of a dagger sticking out of his chest. Then in one motion, the party turns and casts their gaze on the last goblin. All at once, the goblin is hit with a magic missile, a blast of eldritch energy, and a shuriken. The corpse was barely recognizable. After cleaning themselves up, they search the room and find little more than the goblins had. In the pockets of one of the goblins they find a metal symbol at the end of a chain. Brushing away the dirt, a silver symbol of the platinum dragon is revealed.

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All Roads Lead to the Keep
Keep 1

A Preponderance of Evidence

A talisman of Orcus, a letter from someone named Kalarel, agents of orcus digging up a dragon skeleton, it is now too much to ignore. The evidence of cult activity, specifically Orcus cult activity, is now undeniable. The group heads back to town and presents this evidence to Valthrun. When faced with this evidence his face turns an ashen grey. Valthrun then reveals that he knew more about the keep north of the town than he shared before. He recants the tale of the Keep on the Shadowfell. He tells of keep that was built upon a tear in the barrier between this world and the Shadowfell. The evil of Orcus permeated the keep and eventually began to corrupt its inhabitants. The sworn defender of the keep, Sir Keegan, went mad, took the life of his family, his men, and eventually took his own life. The keep has crumbled into ruin since then. The evidence suggests that a cult of Orcus has descended into the keep in an attempt to open the rift. They intend to loose the agents Orcus upon the world. Lord Padraig comes to the heroes and begs for them to keep this from happening. They cannot turn down his request -because otherwise the DM will smite them -to put themselves between innocent villagers and unspeakable evil. A day’s travel brings them into the shadow of the keep. The crumbling ruin sits atop a hill at the foot of the Cairngorm Mountains. As the party drew closer to the keep, the sounds of the forest faded away. The ground surrounding the keep is dry and barren, as trees and grass cannot grow in the soil. The only signs of life are the occasional scurry of insects and goblin tracks leading into the keep. A stone is rolled away from a passage way leading down a flight of steps down into the keep.

Entering the Keep

The group stays at the top of the stairs as the rogue descends down to have a look around. As he reaches the bottom he can make out the details of the keep. The walls are carved of smooth stone and the floor is made of large square flag stones. The stairs give way to a square room that acts like a central hall. There are four stone pillars and a passage way leading off in three separate directions. A figure is spotted leaning up against the wall in the southern passage, a goblin. Dressed in filthy rags and smelling like it had never bathed, the goblin warrior stood guard in leather armor and carrying a spear at his side. The rogue holds his breath and flattens himself against the wall to keep from being seen. The goblin appears to be distracted with his own thoughts. The rogue motions to the warlock, Cirrel to quietly come to the bottom of the steps. Without being noticed, the rogue reaches for a shirken and Cirrel’s hands start to crackle with eldritch energy. The goblin is struck simultaneously by both the shirken and the eldritch blast, killing him instantly. The rest of the party makes their way down the steps as the rogue strides across the floor towards the southern hallway. With a loud crack the floor beneath the rogue gives way. He falls to the bottom of a ten foot deep pit hidden in the center of the room. As he starts to clear the cobwebs from his head and regain his footing, he realized that is has fallen into a swarm of rats as they begin to scratch and gnaw at his skin. He scrambles up the wall of the pit, the whole while screeching like a little girl reaching up for help. No sooner had the party pulled him out of the pit; they could hear the sound of footsteps coming down the hall from the south. The goblin strode up the hallway carrying a crossbow and ready to yell at his compatriot. Expecting to find a goblin screwing off, he was shocked to find a fully armed party of adventures staring at him the way a fraternity looks at a drunk girl on spring break. Unleashing a torrent of pain, the party quickly sent the goblin running back down the hall to the southern chamber. The flicker of torchlight showed the goblin using the corner of the wall for cover and sticking his head out only long enough to get off a shot with his crossbow. Behind him loud banging could be heard as the other goblin sharpshooter turned over the beds to use them as superior cover to fire from. Preoccupied with the goblin sharpshooters, the party almost doesn’t notice the goblin warrior charging at them from the eastern corridor. Waiting for the party to be distracted, he attempted to shove Noname into the rat pit. He may as well have tried to push over the Colossus of Rhodes. Shoving him back, Noname proceeds to introduce the goblin to the business end of his blade. With the goblin sharpshooters pinned down and goblin warrior no longer a threat, Noname and Dirk advanced on the goblins. Cirrel and Aquarian remained in the main hall to guard against a rear attack not that Cirrel would mind that. The elven ranger kept the goblins pinned down with a cascade of arrows as Noname and Dirk closed in. Dirk circled around the overturned beds while Noname tosses one aside. One of the goblins is quickly cut down, but the other is more interested in self preservation. He makes a break for it and runs past the paladin and the ranger. Cirrel and Aquarian turn around just in time to see the goblin make a break down the Western corridor. Aquarian promptly roasts him with a burst of flames while Cirrel let fly a bolt of eldritch energy. Just as the goblin begins to turn the corner he is caught square by the eldritch blast and his corpse bounces off the stone corner and slumps to the floor. Gathering their breath and their wits, our heroes realize that they now have a decision to make.

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The story so far...
From Winterhaven to the depths

It Begins

Adventurers come together from all corners of the globe for all sorts of reasons. In this case, they came from three corners. Aquarian, a wizard, has been charged with finding Douven Staul. Douven was his mentor as a young apprentice and helped him become the wizard he is today. Douven has gone missing and Aquarian has vowed to find him. At his side is a mystery wrapped in an enigma, Noname. The strong armed fighter was borne a bastard child at risk youth as the son of a whore lady of the evening. Raised in the house of ill repute, not knowing who his father is, he set out to make hiw way in the world, or at least leave a scar. Xanteuch is a dwarven cleric who has been given a daunting task. His church has asked him to look into possible cult activity around the town of Winterhaven. He is to snuff out any sign activity if he find it, or if it happens to find him. There were also a rogue and a ranger in the mix, but they seem to have faded into the background.

Winterhaven

Our band of heros met on the King’s Road from Fallcrest to Winterhaven and have decided to travel together for safety. Not too far outside the town of Winterhaven the group is ambushed by small scaley creatures that look like small humanoid dragons. Kobolds. Filthy Kobolds. After getting pelted with a barrage of varios pots from a kobold slinger, the heros were able to turn the tide and vanquish the kobolds. Bruised and battered from their encounter, they made their way to the gates of Winterhaven. Winterhaven is a small quiet town. With all the amenities an adventurer could want, the party opted for the comfort of the Wrafton Inn. Within the Inn they got to know the citizens of the town. Salvan Wrafton, an attractive yet surley woman runs the inn. She knows about the people of the town, but not much about what lies beyond the town walls. Ellian the Old is an old farmer that spends most of his time in the Inn nowadays. All he really wants is someone to talk to. Especially since his friend Douven Staul went missing. Wait a minute… Valthrun the Prescient is a sage and scholar who lives in a tower within Winterhaven’s walls. Valthrun knows more than he lets on about the old keep to the North. Lord Padraig is the lord of the town. He is friendly and open to outsiders as long as their intentions are noble. Above all, he intends to protect the citizens of his town. Ninaran is a quiet elven ranger who rarely leaves the inn. She drinks alone and is stiff and bitter, hardly good company for a weary traveler. When asked about any occult activity, none of the citizens are aware of any and even laugh at the notion.

The Kobold Lair

The party asked around town to find out more about the kobolds harassing the town and travelers along the road. Their investigations lead them on a path to a lair a few hours outside of town. Driven by their unparalled greed sense of duty to protect the citizens of Winterhaven, they set out for the kobold lair. No sooner did the party step outside the walls of Winterhaven were they ambushed again by more kobolds. This time the kobolds were better armed and put up more of a fight. Once again the heros beet them back. The party continued down the road for half a day before turning South into the woods. Half a mile in they could hear the sound of a waterfall. Through the trees they could see the outlines of numerous kobolds milling about. With the great idea to sneak up on them, the party attempted to stealth though the woods. SNAP Some genius steps on a twig and flushes the whole plan down the drain. That battle began with a local paladin, Dirk LeDaring, charging headfirst into battle. The adventurers faught their way through the woods pushing the kobolds back towards the waterfall. As they finished off the last of the kobolds, a lone slinger escapes behind the waterfall to warn the others. The party split up and snuk into the waterfall via a side cave. Sending Dirk through the waterfall to attrack attention, the kobolds converged on the paladin. The warlock and the wizard took advantage of the situation to attack the kobolds from behind. The party converged on the kobolds just behind the waterfall. As the battle began to tip in the party’s favor, a second wave of kobolds decended on the party. This time they were led by a brute of a goblin called Irontooth. What followed was a comedy of errors. The part, unable to hit the broad side of a barn, begins to faulter. The party begins to fall back towards the waterfall. Beseaching the god Moradin, Xanteuch reaches deep into his soul and shines like a beacon of hope. This would be the deciding moment of the battle. Healed and renewed with vigor the party re-engaged the kobolds and began to tear them down one by one. Finally the party stood alone against Irontooth. Tough as nails and hitting like a Mac truck, Irontooth fought ‘till the bitter end. With his dying breath, Irontooth cried out, “Kalarel and Lord Orcus, prepare my way!” A letter found on Irontooth’s corpse read, “My spy in Winterhaven suggests we keep an eye out for visitors to the area. It probably does not matter. In just a few days, I’ll completely open the rift. Then Winterhaven’s people will serve as food for all those Lord Orcus sends to do my bidding.” The party now has more than enough evidence to prove that there is occult activity going on in the area.

Burial Site

On a tip from Ellian the Old, the party investigates an old dragon burial site an hour out of town. The party approached the old burial site which actually looks more like an excavation at this time. The party approached to find a small group led by a gnome with a couple of guard drakes. The gnome, Agrid, greets the party and invites them to come down to investigate the dragon bones. Sensing bullshit that Agrid may have other intentions, the party hesitated. Quickly ascertaning that the gig was up, Agrid orders the attack. The guard drakes rushed the party while a mob of human rabble converged. A halfling rained sling stones down on the party while Agrid stealthed into better position. A blood bath ensued and bodies started dropping. Agrid ambushed Aquarian digging his war pick deep into his back. Then Dirk, in anticipation of a mighty swing of his warhammer into the body of a guard drake, caught Aquarian square in the face with his backswing and knocked him out cold. As Aquarian lay in a bloody heap at the bottom of the excavation site the party finished off the opposing force. Who needs a sissy fairy Eladrin anyway. In a corner of the dig site the party finds an Eladrin bound and gagged hidden underneath a blanket. Looks like the group completed Aquarian’s quest for him.

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