King Makers' Road

On the path to glory and riches

Continuing where Tamarisk, the Dragon Slayer, left off they traversed down the small tunnel following the status that Canim had cast on one of Shamus’ brethren made their way to an opening in which they heard the final cry of the Adult Blue Dragon and continued forward. They joined up with Shamus and woefully watched all of the dragons horde disappear into the Goliaths’ bags. Jarvan and Nidalee (well Nidalee) finished gutting the younger dragon we were charged to dispose of. We met back up with the group at the Elephant carcass and continued back to Highfort.

Once again back into the mundane world of town lordship, or so we think. Once we settle in we all go to our respective tasks. Jarvan: writing letters requesting aid from the Harpers, assuring townspeople they are safe and we are doing our best to keep them safe, and other Jarvany things. Tamarisk: sing in the tavern, drink, be merry, etc. assist in the running of the Thieves’ Guild. NIdalee: Train her wolf. Tanklin: continue training the town guard, put the dragon head on a spike, usual Tanklin gore that we all know and love. Ronin: be sneaky, join in Tamarisk and his frivolity, run the thieves guild, etc. Canim: pray a bunch, talk to Jihad about our next mission which entails clearing out the Temple a day outside the town. Ducain of Clan Ducain and George the Bi-curious: Assist with fortifying Highfort with his druidic abilities. Play with George the Bi-curious. Asher: walk around and watch over the town ever so vigilantly.
Eventually we move on to bigger and better things and attempt to clear the Temple for Jihad. However we run into a slight inconvenience on the way. And when I say slight I mean a super scary smart troll. He is a brazen, cocky, smelly creature who had been sent to assassinate the Lords and Lady of Highfort. Unbeknownst to us he is a member of the Cull (a dark assassin for hire type of guild hired by the Black Hand) and is quite the opponent. Using our perfect tactics (stand in a group and charge) we are caught off guard by his ability to cast spells and most of our party is trapped in his entangle spell almost immediately giving him a large advantage. The meat shield took front and center and took massive blows from the troll hunter giving the group time to escape. Jarvan became worried for the group’s safety when the Troll was continuing to not drop or relent in his attacks. Jarvan yelled and screamed for Tamrisk to aid with his wondrous song of courage but was too concerned with his own safety. The group was finally able to break free and aid in the attack. Ronin snuck behind him and hit with some sneak attacks, Canim healed Jarvan and aided with his mace and Nidalee with her bow. Eventually after finally working as a team we fell the creature, looted his body (finding the letter of hire from the Black Hand), and finally burning it.
We made camp soon after, happy to have Nidalee’s random shack finding skills on hand. Canum heals us back to full and Jarvan touches himself as usual. The next morning we come within striking distance of the Temple. Tamarisk and Ronin in the cloak of night sneak to the watch tower (with the aid of the map given to us by Jihad). They see a very tall wicked bush that completely surrounds the Temple and make their way to the tower wall. They look but see nothing. But Tamarisk has the insight to listen against the wall and hears a dark voice bearing dark words but none with any meaning. They return to us slightly shaken but still in one piece. We change our breach location away from the tower and Ducain uses his powers to diminish a section of the wall to pass through. We realize there is not a single sound coming from within the opening but continue on with our mission. Jarvan checks for evil but is shocked at what he sees. Everything is evil. Despite that we still opt for our usual tactics, charge now think later, and Jarvan somehow resists the will to smite everything. We book it to the Temple doors and break in. It is pitch black inside but we use light spells and the elven orb to guide us. However it is clear something isn’t right. George the Bi-curious and Nidalee’s beloved wolf cower and back away. Their respective owners chase them outside to determine what went wrong. When they do the remaining group sees shadows moving towards them. They shadows come out of the floorboards and attack us. We fight them head on without any idea what is in store for us. Our attacks barely do anything to them and more often than not glide right through them. They however are more successful in their onslaught and begin slowly ripping our souls away with fingers of ice. Jarvan and Canum however specializing in dealing with undead turn them away giving us the ability to search further into the temple and
along with Ducain’s brilliant idea of his fairy fire spell we seemingly gain the upper hand. Tamarisk however with his usual curiosity for adventure, gets far separated from the group and is attacked by another wraith. The battle takes a turn for the worse as more and more of our souls are ripped from us. Ronin, Tamarisk, and Canum all suffer greatly at the cold hands of the wraiths. We are finally able to scare them off again and begin searching again. And once again Tamarisk gets too curios and is enticed by a magical book on a table below the altar. Canum soon comes to the aid of Tamarisk but is lured by the book as well. “I shall give you power” the book promised the pair. But before the book has its chance Jarvan comes realizing the book is the epicenter of evil, uses all his holy might to smite the book. However he made a huge mistake in doing so. He released a dread wraith that was horrifying to look upon. The dread wraith beckoned us to join him and it promised us power. We were un-swayed and tried to vanquish it. It came down to Canum, Tamarisk, Ronin, and Jarvan versus two wraiths and a dread wraith. Tamarisk used his mirror image spell to give us time to take on the dread wraith. We assumed if we cut of the head of the snake the other wraiths would vanish. Despite our best efforts the wraiths took over and got through our defenses and focused on Ronin. He was already weakened by the first attack and had come to help us but in the end his entire soul was ripped away. All seemed lost until a blinding light shot from Canum’s hands and seared into the dread wraith. With that our courage was reborn. We were able to cut through the dread wraith and finish him off for good. With that the other two remaining wraiths ran from us and cowered from us. The evil aura left the Temple and our mission was completed but at a dreadful price, our dear companion Ronin.
We trudged our way back to Highfort carrying our comrade’s body and luckily befell no more evil on the way to our town. Once back we held a grand funeral for our friend. After a brief period of grieving we were back to our mundane tasks. But the main focus was preparing for the expected siege of the Cull now that we had defeated one of its headhunters. We prepared battlements, trained archers and militia, prepared traps, called for aid from all sides. And to our pleasure some aid had come from our calls. An engineer had come to help fortify our wall and towers, along with a particularly special Harper named Kizan. He was sent to help us in all of our efforts, Jarvan was reluctant to allow him to help the group but his reputation as a Harper eased his uncertainties, along with our much lacking magical abilities. Jarvan then gave a speech and called all the outlying farms to temporarily relocate to within the protection of Highfort. Two final things stood in our way, sending word to Oleg and his town and one last were-tiger. I was to ride to Oleg’s to send word and bring them back to Highfort and the rest were to handle the were-tiger.
Villagers in the outlying farms had been consistently attacked and entire families went missing or were found in a macabre scene of blood and gore. But luckily for the remaining farmers they had a five man team coming to their aid. The team astutely recognized a pattern of the were-tiger and set a trap. They lied in wait, on the roof and inside the house and attacked without mercy. The tiger set its sights on Nidalee who was perched on the roof but It was quickly attacked by a lion summoned by Ducain. But the lion only slowed it down. He jumped up on top of the roof and attacked, which soon became a rooftop battle royal. Everyone climbed up to aid Nidalee, scorching rays flew, hippogriffs were summoned, blood flew, but when the dust cleared, it was Nidalee scouring the body as usual. The last set of were-tiger fangs, the last pelt, the last teeth were finally hers. They did quite well without their self- proclaimed leader, Jarvan. They returned to Highfort with the remaining farmers (hopefully except the stupid bridge guy). Jarvan also returned successful with Oleg and company in turn. All was ready for the Battle of Highfort.
We sent out scouts in order to give us any word of oncoming Cull and lied in wait. Each Lord of Highfort had a battle group. We also had Oleg’s small force join in as well. Everyone had their tasks and the stage was set. We see shapes overhead in the clouds, just vague outlines of the creatures that plan to end us. They get within volley range and we begin to loose arrows. Hundreds fly, only a few strike their targets. They are speeding closer and closer and it is clear we have hurt them badly. One goes down behind the cliffs of Highfort, and then they are upon us. Black Riders upon wyrems sweeping down using their talons to pick up men and drop them from the sky. Two crash-land inside the walls but not as many men go to fight the Black riders as expected. Some crippling fear gripped the men, it left them cowering from fear and few to fight. However the few that resisted the fear set upon the two crash-landed targets. Jarvan and his paladins take the first one and kills it quickly. Kizan sets one on fire and it crashes into a watch tower killing all of his men. Canum is picked by one and dropped outside of the walls and is left alone with a Black Rider and gets downed. All the while Ducain goes to see what happened to him and leaves him. Nidalee is firing arrows from her perch dropping massive damage. Jarvan and his paladins make quick work of the second Black Rider. Tanklin and the others finally regain their composure and join the fray. With all three wraiths finally downed the one we thought we killed on the cliffs arrives, wielding a great sword in one hand and a two handed flail in the other, the Witch King. Jarvan charged and dropped massive damage, Kizan scorching rayed him, but he would not go down. But Nidalee runs up and in one foul swoop kills the Witch King in a single stab with her dagger. She made it look easy.
Once the commotion settled and we healed the remaining survivors, Jarvan looked to see if our assets were still safe. He ran alone to the secret hideout to check the gold. He asked Alex to protect it or have someone protect it. However when he arrived he noticed gold was missing but in its place a trail of blood leading to a trap door. He gathered the rest of the group and we began down the trap door. We also found the paladin from Olegs shield. We went down the trap door and came across bare walls, strangely bare walls. We soon found why, black pudding. A vile ooze that dissolves everything around it. We tried to fight it using slashing weapons but soon found that was futile, fists and maces were much more effective. We killed the creature but lost George the Bi-Curious in the process. We took a lot of damage in the battle but had to keep going to our friends. We avoided a sickle trap with ease. Then we saw a large pile of treasure. Of course our Abathor worshipers went straight for the pile and started putting on the charms, to our dismay. Four dark spheres appeared and began attacking us with electricity. They were exceptionally hard to strike due to their very high dexterity. We threw everything we had at them but still got worn down slowly by the wisps. However our endurance out lasted theirs as we killed them one by one despite the difficulty to hit. After a long bitter battle we kill them all. Back to the pile!!! Of course, Nidalee puts on a silver necklace and immediately began thinking the entire party wanted to kill her. She was acting very aggressively and seemed a different person. We try to grapple her and tie her up but another wisp came back and began attacking us again. In the confusion Nidalee escaped her bind and the necklace spoke to her and told her to go for the secret door. She ran to where the trap was and pulled a chain opening a secret passage. However two goblins were waiting for us. They said that they were waiting for us and their king wanted to speak with us. We follow the goblins to the king who gave us an offer we couldn’t refuse. He had Tamarisk, the paladin from Olegs, and Alex held captive along with our gold. He asked us to delve deeper into the earth to clear out for the goblins expansion. We open the large double doors and come upon a large pillared room. The room has a very strong cross breeze coming from what looks like airways above the room on each wall. We expected something fell was afoot so Nidalee shot two arrows into the room causing the wind to get louder and louder. Tanklin then yelled hoping to provoke something. The wind got even stronger and we saw a vortex coming towards us, which we knew was an air elemental. It is huge, 5 times the size of any of us and packed a punch. It slammed us against the walls and out of nowhere Tanlkin reaches into his bag and puts on a broach and flies to the ceiling. He gets stuck and seemingly defies gravity. The rest of us beat on it and try to punch through the howling winds of the air elemental. Eventually we are able to take it down. We continue on to a hallway ahead. We seemingly walk forever and Tanklin is astute enough to use chalk to see if we are being tricked, which we were. We come back the way we came and Canum steps out into the large room again only to be shot with bolts of who knows what. He essentially explodes with light and smoke. Two less beholders were lying in wait for us as we were stuck in the infinite hallway. They were smart creatures and could speak common. The team set a plan to have Jarvan invisible and silent charge the beholders. He crept out into the room but all the planning went out the window when they were 20’ up in the air. Jarvan retreated and they hatched a new plan. The group encouraged Jarvan to put on the necklace and hope his will was strong enough to overcome the evil and speak with the item. Nidalee had mentioned that the necklace knew the stronghold, so it was the best bet. He donned the necklace and spoke candidly with the old master of the fortress. Jarvan spoke with the man and learned quite a few things. This fortress had simply been a domain for his experiments long ago, we also learned how to avoid being attacked (two fingers facing out on your forehead), and where the correct pathway is to delve deeper into the compound. The question is what lies waiting for us next?


You guys are huge. Tamarisks Spirit lives on ! Save Me !

On the path to glory and riches

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