Dreamscape

Session 81: We didn't start the fire.
Stinking Cloud doing the DM's work for him.

Beginning to set out after killing the first elemental, they hear some shouting. Oh boy, it’s Emon returning from his scouting being chased by oozes, drow, and an owlbear. The adventure begins!

Kill this elemental, then kill that elemental!

Then those rage drakes! Then Shra will cast an obscuring poisonous cloud that prevents all future progress in combat! Hurrah!

Qax gets nervous for some reason after the dragon roar, but doesn’t seem to want to talk about it and the others let that slide.

They find a pool of lava, but it’s cool. Arcane Gate!

There were some dragon roars, and why are these fire elementals making all this lava?

Whatevs.

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Session 80: A Little Hot Foot, or "The Floor is Lava"
"Sad blub" -- The Black Pudding, probably.

The party, feeling tired and wounded, decides to stop for a long rest where they stand. They set up a magical hound for watch, and head to sleep. Only an hour into their sleep, the hound is barking. quite loudly.

To the west, the party sees as they rouse themselves, are several acidic oozes. Groaning, the party readies themselves for combat. Ulgrim is the first to charge in, and is reduced quickly to 2 hitpoints. Through some thunderwave, some Conjure Animals, and some Statue Smashin’, they’re able to kill all but one, and save Ulgrim. For the very last, however, things get… cruel.

Shra ignites a bonfire underneath while keeping concentration on black tentacles to keep it in place. Torinn alights it with a moonbeam. And Ulgrim and Toro take turns flinging mind-rending insults at the ooze. It can’t understand why, but it just felt… sad. And so it was shamed to death.

The party rests, and takes the statue for a ride. Not wanting to spend time bickering, Toro orders everyone onto the statue, and orders it into the curtain. Relenting a bit because of their whining, he agrees to turn on the aura at least before they walk through the magma curtain. The curtain is dissipated, however the party as a result takes biting cold damage. The statue “speeds” through and they turn the aura off inside.

Soon, however, they’re taking fire damage from the intense heat of this oven, and their attempts at sending out bat scouts are burnt.

They can’t turn the aura on while they’re on the statue, but they can’t get off the statue because they’re wading in a pool of magma.

The party is faced with a problem. How to get safe?

Ulgrim: Take the statue back to solid ground, turn the aura on, and we’ll walk through!
Torinn: I’ll summon bats. We ride them, turn the aura on, and land!
Shra: I want a drink.

Toro: Everyone, no. Get on sarcophagus. Sarcophagus solves all problems.

So they do. They statue steps back, turns on the aura, and the party hops off. Safely traversing the territory.

They come upon a fire elemental just hanging around, and deduce that it must be conjuring the magic that’s turning this place into a magma sauna. They use the statue to disturb the elemental. And with a combination of an endless decanter, and a cold aura statue, they’re quickly able to douse both the elemental, and a portion of the lava floor. In response they’re attacked by a group of magma mephits and a large red skinned, glowing snake. However, those too are quickly dispatched by the elemental.

There we stop, for now.

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Session 79: Drow-sing Rod
"I smack her around a bit" --Chris Brown (Toro)

The party scouts for like a super long time before they find some drow hanging other drow up. That’s weird, let’s kill them.

After killing like a whole bunch they ask, “Hey, so, wtf?”

They’re like, “We’re the Broken! I’m Broken Priestess Sassandra. We hate Lolth and Lolth Drow, and those were some Lolth Drow. We’re on out way to Zauvir to fuck up some more Drow but got lost. That’s our magic statue Aganast that helps us travel the melted rock parts, please don’t take it. Also there are no more drow ahead I promise and the DM rolled a 20 deception and I can prove it, but they didn’t actually end up taking the path that lead to the other drow so I didn’t even get to be smug about it but whatevs.”

They find a wall of lava and say “fuck it” and stop there for the night.

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Session 78: Fire Giants and Their Goods

The giant leads the party into the keep of Ironslag to speak with Duke Zalto. There they explain their quest and are gifted some other people that were staying as guests (servants) of the fire giants. Ulgrim the dwarf, Shra the lizardfolk, and Xanthor, who are playing cards when the party shows up.

The fire giants approve of Toro’s quest, respect the goddess Jet, and also have a terrible fear of what lurks below.

But Toro has another request. He wants that cup, which Toro learns is named “Valor’s Stein”.

Zalto agrees, but proves to be less honorable than Toro thought he would bee, and even though Toro goes 2-1 against Zalto, Zalto declares himself the winner.

Toro is kinda pissed, but surrounded by fire giants he can’t really do anything about it.

They rest as guests and set out in the morning. Down below they’re dropped on by a whole mess of oozes. They beat them, and we stop there.

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Session 78: So Long Tharious
You were just a Candle in the Wind.

They heal Tharious, and decide to rely on their old faithful, polymorph. They Sloth the aberration, and toro takes it outside as high as he can in a round or two, and rops it.

It doesn’t die from the fall, but the snow and cold do douse the fire aura temporarily. From there they finish it off. Qax tells them it was the Spawn of Xul-Bohr. The party is distraught, they thought they’d taken out the leader. They worry what the hell they’ll have to fight that SPAWNS on of those things.

They head back inside, figure out the puzzle to open the statue, get in. More kobolds and a salamandar, and more burnt fire giant corpses. They engage the kobolds and Salamander, and the party decides it’s time for Toro to be a T-Rex to ride. Emon gets on. Tharious and Torinn hand back and decide to poke from afar. The kobolds swarm the T-Rex, and the result is what you’d expect. A few more kobolds and the Salamander pass up the T-Rex and head for the healer and the druid. Torinn turns into a giant eagle and flies away from Tharious, leaving him alone, so he won’t break concentration on the polymorph for Toro.However, the salamandar, tragically, is able to kill Tharious before escaping.

One kobold also manages to charm Toro magically into letting him live, so he disguises as a corpse and the others don’t notice.

After killing off all the other kobolds, a door opens and a fire giant is standing there. We stop there.

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Session 77: Spawn of Xul-Bohr

They fight the bulettes and kobolds, and take on prisoner. Qax. He tells them all about how they worship Xul-Bohr now. The party figures out Xul-Bohr is that aberration they never fully killed.

They are standing before Ironslag after a week’s travel through the rocky passes. Ironslag sits in the path to Firestorm Peak. So they head in.

It’s pretty rough in here, and there are fire giant corpses that have been burnt. That’s bad.

Some hears some deep speech coming from the next room, though since they gave the conch to abuella to control the chuul in Wamor to protect their house, they don’t understand what’s being said.

Tharious goes in to investigate and sees a huge magma aberration, and a bunch of kobolds all hanging around a statue. The magma aberration spots them and it and all the kobolds charge. Toro flies up and drops the sarcophagus on the first kobolds that appear. Several more are in the back, but then the magma aberration literally rolls over all of them and instantly melts Tharious with a spray of lava. Well, not melts, but does knock him unconscious. And it radiates heat that deals damage to everyone nearby. Next turn Tharious could be dead. Toro dives down to retrieve Tharious and heal him, and we end there.

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Session 76: Sex and the City, but with assholes.

They talk to Horgrim, the current king of Barumila. They go shopping and Emon steals some Dexterity Gloves.

Torinn asks around about some people. Detective Gittes left the city not long after the players did. Horgrim’s sister also is not at Barumila, instead off elsewhere doing what she can to help the less fortunate. Barumila has opened the pass to Naramunz and has begun rebuilding their relationships with the other dwarven fortresses. The two Hammer/Axe brothers have reconciled and after winning the tournament were asked to make mechanized suits of plate for the military, which is their full-time occupation now.

Toro decides he wants to shop. And how might he do that? Why, but finding a bitchin’ workout book. But where? He rolls terribly for investigation and is about to give up when Torinn decides to lend a hand. Together they track down that one dwarf that actually gave Toro a challenge in wrestling. He’s a local superstar in the Fire Beetle, a tavern in the Dregs.

They talk to him, and he is impressed by Toro carrying around a heavy sarcophagus just to keep a promise, so he agrees to give Toro the manual for free if he can promise to bring back a fire giant duke’s mug. Didn’t say why, just wanted it. Toro and Thum the dwarf go off on a man date and begin crashing through the walls of residential district of Barumila.

They set off in the morning after some rest and after days of uneventful travel on the roads passing travelling merchants are attacked by some kobolds and bulettes in the pass toward Firestorm Peak. We end the session there.

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75: The Javier Bardem

They get some breakfast, when Lord Greymane shows up. They throw some mad shade at lord Greymane for trying to be buddy-buddy but really being like “give me what I want”. He wants their vote to make him temporary commander of the forces of Lere. Lere being made up of many houses has many small armies, and since the time has come to unite them to face the undead threat, the idea of a single head commander is important. Greymane loosely held that responsibility during the siege. He wants it again.

However Shiek Aashir informed Torinn that Greymane intends to use the political capital he’ll gain from being Imperator to make himself de facto emperor once the dust settles. So, there’s that.

Lord Greymane is like super intimidated once the chuul army shows up that Torinn had summoned a couple hours earlier. He leaves them a map that shows them the progress the dracolich Zeiram has made so far. It’s pretty bad.

That’s when they decide to go take care of Toro’s Javier Bardem. Who knows when they’ll get another chance. They teleport to Barumila. There they see Valdi. Torinn gets GOOD satisfaction in fucking with him. He’s still a noble. Albeit a poorer one, and much more timid. We stop there for the night.

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Session 74: Home Makeover

The players go upstairs to pick their rooms.

Then they have breakfast.

The end.

(Also Abuella is assigned “Steward” of the house. Aashir is informed of Soveliss’ death and gives Torinn a Bro-Hug. Thames is assessed and found to be suspicious in light of the death of Raziel (which he says won’t yet be the death of their order until his lieutenants and replacements are killed), and Greymane shows up to ask about being appointed War Councilor to which the players respond with “Chuul Army”, once again proving that “Chuul” is the answer to literally any possible encounter.)

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Session 73: Meeting of the Houses, And the DM Talks to himself.
Are you 'slight of hand'ing a candle up his ass? --Tharious

Emon previous scouted around town, but what he was able to accomplish so far as scouting while important, wasn’t very deep. He collected a rumor or two from each house.

  1. Lady Greymane (The matron and true head of House Greymane) had not been seen in weeks)
  2. Lord Stonebrook, the leader of House Stonebrook and extraordinarily important figure in the Faith of Pelor as well as the Acropolis, has been mired in scandal regarding the rumor that his son is an oathbreaker.
  3. House Auburn has been stockpiling a very large cache of… something, in one of their warehouses. And further probing by Emon saw that it was very heavily patrolled by what looked like ordinary house guards (as opposed to heavy, bought muscle).
  4. Rosalia is potentially facing a near cataclysmic schism, if the University if patrons, headed by a powerful wizard, Naxus, separates itself from Rosalia.
  5. In House Zahran, Shiek Aashir has been seen frequently in heated debate with his uncle, Caliph Junayd. The cause of the disagreement is unknown, but Junayd has spared no curse for his nephew.

Back at the conference, the players spread out a bit to hold conversation with the heads of the houses of Lere. Emon approaches Duke Auburn, and decides to conduct a test of the man. Does he know The Cant? For a man of rather high stature and nobility, Emon discovers that yes, he knows the cant. And the two share a brief but clandestine conversation in public. Emon attempts to continue the conversation, but Duke Auburn seems uninterested, and resists answering further questions in Cant.

Toro approaches a wizard of Rosalia, but finds the person to be just a tad racist (or curious!), and leaves him alone.

Torinn then wrestles Toro for the right to ride the sarcophagus. However, he is shaken off and a brief melee ensues as others look on. Tharious sits and waits, and after a time the Governor of Wamor, Elik, arrives.

Only instead of Governor Elik, the man who steps out is apparently Governor Reynes, the Governor of Governors.

The man seems perturbed that the houses are meeting at all, and implies it was intentionally to leave out the proper “head” of state. Perhaps even to bully the weaker willed Elik into accepting the things the houses wanted to talk about.

The meeting begins and the first thing they talk about is that Barrow Hills was assaulted by a skeletal force led by the lich who they know as Zeiram. Some floating skeletal sorcerer accompanied the assault of undead. During the melee, the magician raised thousands of undead buried beneath the mounts of Barrow Hill. As soon as retrieving the undead, even though they were winning the fight, they retreated.

Taeiseach Greymane resolved himself to learning more about the barrows.

Up next was the question of Lere’s leadership, Premier Rosalia seemed upset about something when he came forward and suggested that Rosalia be promoted to de facto leader. As they accomplished the task previously set upon them, and also retrieved the corpse of the king, they are the most honorable and worthy.

Toro and the others comment that the ritual they gathered the ingredients for was the downfall of the city, therefore it’s not really appropriate they be rewarded for it. Also Lord Stonebrook chimes in to say the ingredients were lost anyway, so it was moot.

That’s when the party decides it’s probably time to reveal that they were able to recover most of the artifacts. The rest are in awe, and they want to discuss it further, but Aashir interrupts. He has something he wants to discuss.

See, the houses all believe they’re entitled to a piece of House Xiao’s assets as reparations for the damage caused by the cultists (which House Xiao assisted in). However, Aashir notes that there have always been 7 houses. So they find themselves in need of a new House to replace Xiao. And given the times ahead for Lere, it stands to reason, he argues, that a more… “heroic” house as at least a temporary aid against Lere’s threats might serve them quite well. So he nominates the Heroes of Lere to inherit the titles and lands of Xiao.

Duke Auburn steps forward, as does (begrudginly) Premier Rosalia. Governor Reynes is outraged and proclaims his right to break ties. However, the houses Overrule him, declaring Lere a temporary Oligarchy.

They’re escorted back to Zarhan’s Manor after the Governor storms off, where they collect their things and are brought to their new home.

Once inside they discuss how they plan to clean house when an old, hunched woman announced she’d like to bless them with a card reading. She is clearly a charlatan and nearly outed as such. Emon pickpockets the cards she’d planned on using for Torinn, the final reading. However, when she pulls a card, it is The Dragon. She is confused and a little worried (that her ruse was going to be discovered). Then she pulls the Death card. She’s positive she’d messed up and tries to explain away the card as a good thing.

when she pulls the next card and it is another dragon, she begins sweating and swearing that someone is messing with her. The cards are wrong, and she apologizes and tries to start another reading. However the next card is Death again. She drops the deck as if it bit her and runs out of the room screaming. Every card reveals itself to be Dragon and Death. The message to Torinn is clear. However, to cement the horror that is tracking them, Soveliss shows up. They think he might be able to give them some good news.

However his stomach is ripped in half to form a macabre mouth out of his ribs, and a sinister and familiar voice comes through the gore, “Two down, one to go.”

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