Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Guild of Heroes Session Report 12/31 - A Barbaric Test, Kularkuthan's Summons

This past Sunday, December 31st, 2017, we had another two exciting sessions with our young members of the Guild of Heroes, once again with a cast of returning characters from our ongoing D&D campaign for players as young as 9 and as old as 15. We had two quests for the twelve heroes, run by our DMs Yoni and Camilla. Stay tuned to our eventbrite for postings about our next open sessions.

GM Yoni - A Barbaric Test (Dmarra)

Gubrash, a warrior herald from the barbarian tribe on the island of Dmarra, arrived unannounced at Fort Stonespur to deliver an invitation. Six brave adventurers were sought to undergo a trial to prove the worth of the Guild of Heroes, and thereby gain the fierce Dmarrans as allies. They boarded a ship and sailed south to Dmarra, where they saw preparations underway for a sumptuous feast.

Gubrash led them up into the hills, to the entrance of a cavern. “If you can get back to the village before the feast begins, you will pass this test,” he said, before promptly sealing them inside the cave with a giant boulder. Rowan cast Dancing Lights and drove away the darkness, only to find himself face-to-face with a hungry, fiercely territorial Werebear. The heroes fought valiantly, but quickly came to the realization that they were outmatched. They hid themselves behind a magical barrier, and once the Werebear gave up and fell asleep (reverting to its human form), they carefully woke him, and persuaded him to let them leave his lair in peace and continue down into the tunnels.

At the first intersection, the heroes sensibly chose to avoid a giant pit of snakes, following an underground stream down the opposite path. When the walls and floor changed from rough earth to smooth stone, the next challenge presented itself. Two adventurers charged down the hallway, attempting (and sometimes succeeding) to avoid 80 feet of whirling razor-sharp blades. Once clear of the first hazard, they thought they could breathe easier, but the roof began to cave in above them! They cautioned their friends to stay back, and realized that as long as none of them triggered the blade trap, they could make their way forward in safety. Overcoming terrifying psychic forces, they destroyed the glittering Rune of Fear at the end of the hallway, disabling the trap and revealing a mysterious treasure: a gem as black as darkness itself, which absorbs all light but reveals glimmers of color as you gaze into its depths.

Realizing that the stream continued beneath the rune’s pedestal, they cleaved it in two with three Magic Missile blasts followed by a mighty great axe blow. Throwing caution to the wind, they jumped into the hole in the floor and rode the waterslide down, flying out the end to come crashing down into an underground pool. They quickly swam to the shore and escaped into another tunnel, catching only a glimpse of a giant creature rearing up from the depths before they were caught up and swept away in a great torrent of water. When the water subsided, they were deposited in another cavernous space, this one filled with rotting garbage and sewage. It was the lair of an Otyugh!

They faced off against the fearsome beast. This time, there would be no trickery, and no escape. Ensnaring the adventurers in its tentacles and biting at them with its gaping maw, the Otyugh proved to be a formidable foe. Through teamwork and daring heroism, they prevailed. Ancestra delivered the final blow using the bard spell Vicious Mockery. As the player described it, “Its heart was broken and sank into its stomach, where it exploded!” Covered in viscera and stinking of sewage, the heroes crawled through the path the Otyugh had burrowed, and emerged into sunlight, where they were greeted with raucous joy by the Dmarrans. “You passed!” said Gubrash. “We haven’t started the feast yet. We were waiting for you.”

GM Camilla - Kularkuthan's Summons (Isles of Niln - Thaldoon)

One day at Fort Stonespur, a strange envoy arrived, a copper Dragonborn by the name of Icthyamalli, claiming service to one Kularkuthan, queen of Thaldoon. None recognized the name, but six heroes volunteered to escort him back, and hear the summons of his patron. They were Drawfinistination a dwarf cleric, Eldan an elf druid, Euyoi a human ranger, and three trainees, Jeff, Orsik, and Carric.

Their trip led them not through the city gates, but into a network of caves deep beneath, ultimately revealing that Kularkuthan was no human or elf, nor any other species we would easily call friend, but a mad and vain beholder, shut away in a cave full of her petrified victims. Kularkuthan claimed the city as her own, and sought alliance to expel Helthra, the half-giant she saw as the snakehead of her foes.

Accepting her offer, they took a mission from her aide, Icthyamalli, and infiltrated the city, passing through troglodyte-ridden sewers. Their goal was Rising Hearts, a bakery where they would find Rolf, the recipient of a coded message they held. Euyoi carefully investigated, and found the bakery overrun with customers, nothing a few skunk-looking (and smelling) illusions couldn’t take care of. They were surprised to find their contact absent, but the workers there spoke of his arrest, suspecting that he’d been taken to the Burning Pits, a large fighting arena in the southwest of the city. The party made their way inside, and found a dwarf they believed to be Rolf, fighting with a large wooden baker’s paddle.

Just when they thought he would make it out alive, a tall half-giant woman in the seat of honor had another beast sent out, a towering minotaur, sure to crush their much shorter friend. The party lept into action, joining Rolf in the ring. One of the trainees, Orsik, sent a few preemptive bolts at Helthra, but the damage as they exploded against her didn’t seem to faze her! Within moments, the beast was upon them, and a great battle ensued. Drawfinistation was tested to the limits of his abilities, saving his allies in the nick of time more than once, but clever tactics from Jeff and Carric helped subdue the Minotaur, and their lives were spared. Fearful of arousing suspicion, and with an urgent return message from Rolf, they returned to the sewers, delivered the message, and returned home, with ties forged beneath the city.

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