Campaign of the Month: February 2012

Legacy of the Realms

Goblin Ambush
Chapter 2 (Lost Mines of Phandelver)

2 Flamerule, Year of the Warrior Princess (1489 DR)
The Sword Coast

In the city of Neverwinter, a dwarf named Gundren Rockseeker asked Ghesh Goldscale and Randal Sunbringer to help safely deliver a wagonload of provisions to the rough-and-tumble settlement of Phandalin, a couple of days’ travel southeast of the city.

Gundren was clearly excited and a little bit secretive about his reasons for the trip, saying only that he and his brothers had found “something big” and that he was willing to pay both Ghesh and Randal ten gold pieces each for escorting his supplies to Barthen’s Provisions, a trading post in Phandalin.

Gundren then set out ahead of the wagon on horse, along with a warrior escort named Sildar Hallwinter, claiming he needed to arrive early to “take care of business”.

**

Ghesh was the first to spot two travelers walking along the middle of the road.

The two were still about a hundred yards ahead of the wagon, but Ghesh didn’t want to take any chances. He jumped off and walked alongside the single ox pulling the wagon.

Travarr, a old human man Gundren had hired to drive the wagon to Phandalin, slowed the wagon down to a crawl.

Randal, too, left the wagon and looked around for signs of any others who may be hiding. “Could be an ambush, Ghesh. Stay alert.”

Both drew their blades, ready for anything.

Osric and Xander heard the wagon coming up behind them.

They turned around and saw three people on a wagon being pulled by an ox. While two were human, the third was clearly a dragonborn; an uncommon sight outside most large cities.

One of the humans was an old wagon-driver by the looks of the commoner’s clothes he wore. The other human, however, was armed with a longsword and carried a steel shield emblazoned with a fiery golden sun. He wore a suit of chainmail which protected him from head to foot.

The dragonborn had a battle axe in his right hand. A second battleaxe was visible, strapped on his back. He too, wore a suit of chainmail.

“Could be bandits,” Xander warned but he didn’t draw his rapier.

Osric raised his hand in greeting as the dragonborn and human began walking towards them both. “If they’re bandits, we’re in for a fight. They’re well armed and armored.”

“Well met travelers,” Ghesh said as he and Randal approached to within thirty feet of the two. His scaled browridge rose when he realized that one of the travelers was a half-elf. Uncommon as they were, he could count on his one hand the number of times he had met a half-elf.

Osric and Xander introduced themselves and asked where the trio were headed. In turn, Ghesh and Randal introduced themselves and explained that they were headed to the town of Phandalin which was still about thirty or so miles southeast of where they were.

Xander went on to explain that he and Osric were looking for work to earn some coins as they made their way to Waterdeep. When asked, Randal admitted he didn’t know where he was headed beyond helping deliver the wagon to Phandalin. However, he said he was on a personal quest as a paladin to spread the knowledge of Lathander, the god of birth and renewal. Ghesh, it seemed, had business in Waterdeep as well.

Randal offered to have Xander and Osric join them on their way to Phandalin.

By late afternoon on the second day of their journey since having left Neverwinter, the group now four strong, along with the wagon driver, veered east along the Triboar Trail. They were fortunate not to have encountered any trouble so far, but they knew well enough how dangerous the territory could be.

Both Ghesh and Randal decided to walk next to the wagon.

Xander and Osric meanwhile enjoyed the ride on the wagon full of supplies, which seemed to be composed of various mining supplies and food.

Travarr proved to be a fair enough companion on the High Road. He spoke mostly of his failed marriages and kept offering sips to everyone from his flask containing a strong wine which had a smoky, nutty flavor to it. Osric and Xander were just happy to be able to ask for more water to fill their wineskins.

Suddenly an arrow thunked into the front of the wagon just below where Travarr sat.

“To arms!” Ghesh yelled. Before he could draw both batteaxes, a small green-skinned humanoid dressed in ragged leather armor and wielding a rusted scimitar and shield ran out from behind a nearby boulder. With a wild scream, it rushed at the dragonborn who sidestepped the humanoid’s attempt to cut his stomach open.

goblin_sniper_by_sumerky-d3ewxos.jpg
Randal screamed in pain as an arrow buried itself into his back. From a nearby bush, a creature—a goblin, he was certain, for he spoke their vile language—rushed out of hiding and tried to attack Xander who was sitting next to Travarr on the wagon. Fortunately, the goblin found it difficult to attack someone almost out of his reach.

Osric, who was taking a nap near the back of the wagon, suddenly woke up upon hearing Ghesh sound the alarm. He spotted Randal nearly doubled over in pain. A black-feathered arrow was sticking out of the paladin’s back.

He quickly sang a short aria. Randal heard the bard and felt the soothing tones of his aria flow through him. Despite the arrow still stuck in his back, the bard’s song helped ease the pain.

The battle continued for almost a minute.

When it was over, Ghesh lay unconscious on the ground. He was alive, but barely. Fortunately, Osric was able to staunch the flow of blood after a goblin had cut him down. Even Randal had suffered wounds from the goblin ambush. However, he was able to call upon the blessings of Lathander to heal himself.

In the the end, three goblins lay dead. One had gotten away and fled northeast.

After tending to their wounds and placing Ghesh on the wagon, they searched the goblins. They considered taking the creatures’ weapons and armor to sell in Phandalin, but Travarr told them the goblins’ equipment were worthless: patched up leather armor, rusted scimitars, and bows on the verge of breaking were not likely to earn them even a copper piece. The goblins’ arrows, however, seemed to be sharp enough to use. So they decided to take those. They then buried the goblins together in a shallow grave not far from the road.

With no priest or healing potions, and Ghesh still unconscious, the group decided to continue on the Triboar Trail and find a suitable campsite before they lost daylight.

But as they came around a bend on the trail, they spotted two dead horses sprawled on the path, blocking it. Each had several black-feathered arrows sticking out of it. The woods nearby pressed close to the trail, with a steep embankment and dense thickets on either side.

“Another perfect place for an ambush,” Randal said as he went with the others to investigate the grisly scene. “These horses belonged to Gundren Rockseeker and Sildar Hallwinter. I’m sure of it. Looks like they’ve been dead about a day.”

“The saddlebags have been looted,” Osric said. “They’re all empty.”

Xander discovered a leather map case lying on the side of the trail, not far from the dead horses. “It’s empty,” he said showing it to the others.

After further inspecting the area, they learned that the goblins seemed to have been using the place to stage some ambushes for quite some time.

They also found a path on the north side of the trail. It led northeast.

They also learned that about a dozen goblins had come and gone along the trail, as well as signs of two human-sized bodies having been hauled away from the ambush site.

“What do we do now?” Randal asked everyone. “The goblins have taken Gundren Rockseeker and Sildar Hallwinter. We need to find them!”

“How do we even know if they’re still alive?” Xander asked.

“There doesn’t seem to be much blood here,” Osric offered. “They could have been overwhelmed by force, knocked unconscious, or taken captive. It’s all very tragic indeed.”

“Listen everyone,” Xander said. “Ghesh is hurt and needs healing or at the very least, rest. And we don’t have much sunlight left in the day to go tracking down goblins.”

“He has a point,” Osric conceded.

“I say we continue on to Phandalin, deliver the wagon, and then come back,” Xander offered. “Maybe we can even find help in town.”

“How far till we reach Phandalin?” Randal asked Travarr.

“We’re still about a day’s travel out,” Travarr said. “We’ll need to stop soon. Old Bess needs to rest for the day.”

“Bess,” Osric inquired. “Wasn’t that the name of your fifth wife, if memory serves?”

“Aye,” Travarr replied. “The old ox here reminds me of her girth and stubborn nature.”

“Horns too?” Osric couldn’t resist. Travarr only smiled back.

“Let’s make camp and discuss our plans,” Xander proposed. “Hopefully Ghesh will recover after a night’s rest. We can decide what to do in the morning.”

Everyone agreed that with night coming, they would indeed have to wait until the morning to decide what to do.


Heroes

Ghesh Goldscale (5e Fighter: Soldier)

Osric Drakespeare (5e Bard: Entertainer)

Randal Sunbringer (5e Paladin of Lathander, Acolyte)

Xander Wayfinder (Human Fighter, Sailor)


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I'll Take the High Road
Chapter 1 (Lost Mines of Phandelver)

1 Flamerule, Year of the Warrior Princess (1489 DR)
The Sword Coast

Xander Wayfinder barely avoided being drenched by a bucketful of waste thrown from a window above him.

Looking up, he noticed an elderly woman mouth an apology then quickly slam the shutter closed behind her.

Xander looked farther down the street. He could just make out the southern gates leading out of Chasm, the area of Neverwinter named after the immense gaping crevice which divided the city’s southern district in half. Despite being early enough in the day, the streets of Chasm were already becoming congested with people of all races and professions.

Xander was eager to leave Neverwinter. He had been in the city for two days but could not find work as a sailor. He could no longer afford to stay in Neverwinter either. Rooms and food cost coins. He checked his belt pouch despite knowing he was running out coins.

He heard there were jobs to be found in Waterdeep, the City of Splendors. He tried to avoid walking the two hundred miles it would take along the High Road, but with no ships willing to take on another sailor, even to work off his passage, Xander had no other alternative but to walk.

He was fortunate enough to have met other travelers who were headed south along the High Road. He stayed with them until late in the afternoon when the last two travelers took a trail headed east.

Xander knew that a lone traveler on the High Road was an easy target for bandits, or worse. He was skilled enough with the rapier. But even he knew he wouldn’t last long against several opponents at once.

As the sun began to set on the first day of his journey, Xander spotted a small square building along the road. It was barely twenty feet on each side and lay in ruins. it didn’t have a roof. It may have served as a shrine, a traveler’s rest stop, or someone’s home at one point.

Xander saw smoke rising out of the building. Someone had clearly started a campfire inside the stone building.

Not sure if whomever was in the building was friendly or not, Xander carefully made his way to where a corner part of the building had collapsed.

He saw a male half-elf sitting by a small fire inside. The half-elf was picking the strings of a yarting. The half-elf’s belongings lay on the ground behind him. He was also chewing on some rations.

Xander had previously met a half-elf only once before. It was when he first sailed out of his homeport of Baldur’s Gate. The half-elf, who was neither welcomed by the humans nor the elves on board the ship, always kept to himself. Xander tried to befriend him, but the half-elf preferred to be left alone. He always wondered if all half-elves were the same.

“Well met traveler,” the half-elf announced. “If you mean no harm, you are certainly welcome to share the fire with me.”

“A bit warm for a fire don’t you think?” Xander remarked as he walked over to join the half-elf.

“It helps keep the bugs away.” the half-elf said. “I’d offer some fresh meat, but unfortunately my skills are lacking in the art of hunting.”

“I’ve got rations.” Xander said. He took off his own heavy backpack and lay it down next to him. “I’m Xander Wayfinder. I’m headed to Waterdeep. Where are you headed, friend?”

“I’m Osric Drakespeare…” Osric paused wanting to let his surname sink in. Unfortunately, it didn’t. “You’ve never heard of Drakespeare?”

“Should I have?” Xander asked.

“You should have. My great uncle was William Drakespeare, the most famous bard and playwright in all of Faerûn.”

“Sorry, but as a sailor, I didn’t have much time to read or see plays.”

Osric was disappointed. “Well, you will soon hear of my fame after I open up a playhouse in Waterdeep. I plan on being more famous than my great uncle.”

“Sounds like an expensive dream,” Xander said. He took out some dried meat, a piece of hard bread, and several slices of moldy cheese. He scraped most of the mold off and took a bite. “You’ll need gold coins, and plenty of it.”

“I plan to stop by the nearest town I come to and perform there to earn some money. Perhaps even perform at some of the other towns or villages along the way to Waterdeep.”

“What about you?” Osric inquired. “What are your plans for your future?”

“When I reach Waterdeep, I plan to sign on as a sailor on a ship. I hope to become a captain someday. I’d like to have a ship to call my own.”

Osric smiled. “Now there’s a dream worth a lot of coins, my friend.”

“Have you ever been along this road?” Xander asked changing the subject.

“Never,” Osric replied. “I’ve stayed in and around Neverwinter mostly.”

“Well, tell you what,” Xander offered. “It’d be safer to travel together. I’ve been told to be careful of bandits along this road. So, let’s stick together and make our way to Waterdeep. We can stop along any town and village and see what coins we can earn. What skills do you—”

“Shh!” Osric interrupted. The half-elf was looking around. “I heard someone or something outside.” The bard slowly got up and peered into the area beyond where the fire from the campfire illuminated the road and the surrounding grassy field. His darkvision allowed him to see well enough in darkness.

He didn’t see anyone.

Xander moved up and stepped into a nearby corner next to a small arrowslit. Suddenly the fighter spotted something moving just outside the narrow window. In the firelight, it looked like a slim person. But it was the eyes and its mouth that told the sailor that whatever it was, it was not, or no longer human. Red pinpoints of light shone in its eyes. And its mouth was covered with rows of sharp teeth that resembled those of sharks he’d seen in many of his voyages in the Sea of Swords.

Knowing it had been spotted, the creature suddenly hissed at Xander and rushed to attack them both.

ghoul1.jpg
In the campfire’s light, the creature was no less frightening. Its skin was ashen in color. It wore bits and pieces of torn clothing and remnants of what may have been leather armor at one time. Its hands looked more like claws, with blackened, dirt-crusted, nails that looked sharp enough to tear through any armor.

Both adventurers nearly gagged at the stench emanating from the creature. It smelled like damp earth from a cemetery and decayed matter.

“Phlesssh…fooood..,” the creature hissed in common.

Xander drew his rapier and attacked. It screamed as Xander’s blade cut a deep, thin slice across its arm.

Osric, drawing his own rapier, stabbed at the creature, striking it in the stomach. Dark, putrid-smelling blood oozed from its wounds.

Angered, it tried to rake at Xander who barely managed to avoid being disemboweled by the thing’s sharp claws.

Both fighter and bard pressed on the attack, wounding it further. Any other creature would have fled at this point, but the thing’s hunger needed to be satiated.

It lunged at Osric. The bard struck the hilt of his rapier against the thing’s extended arm, batting it away.

Xander quickly moved to flank the creature. Seeing the creature’s attention momentarily focused on Osric, Xander slashed with all his might. His rapier sliced through the thing’s back, cutting through skin and muscles.

The creature arched its back and screamed in agony. It then fell to the ground, twitched once, and lay still, dead once more.

Osric and Xander caught their breaths and made sure there were no more of the foul creatures lurking about. Satisfied there weren’t any, both dragged the body far enough away so as not to smell it.

Both asked but neither knew what the creature was.

Satisfied that they were safe enough, they both settled in for the night.

Each took his turn on watch, hoping to never to run into whatever that thing was, yet wondering what other dangers lurked on the two-hundred mile journey to Waterdeep.


Adventurers

Osric Drakespeare (5e Bard: Entertainer)

Xander Wayfinder (Human Fighter, Sailor)


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Legacy of the Realms 5th Edition launches!

With the release of the Player’s Handbook, Legacy of the Realms officially switched over to the 5th Edition of Dungeons and Dragons.

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"The Garden of Graves" Part 4
A Tomb of Horrors Story Arc

Eleint 4, 1479, Year of the Ageless One


From down the hall, the sounds of dull murmurings of multiple people talking softly at once, as well as the occasional clinks of glasses can be heard.


To be continued…


Adventurers:

Patch, and Kallin Rourke

RIP:

Fredara, Jobek, Monro, Vyn
& Orva (female gnome arcanist companion, from the Feywild)

Companions:

Luthan Graythicket (male half-elf ranger companion, from Elturgard)

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"Ancient Grudges"
A Shadowblades Story Arc

30 Eleint, 1479, Year of the Ageless One
Town of Daggerford



To be continued…


Heroes:

Gaerd De’barronn, Sgt. Carric of Daggerford

Companions & NPCs:

Gomorrah Entreri

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"Spiders Man '!'"
Land of the Purple Dragon (Adventures in Cormyr)

Tarsakh 5, 1481, The Year of the Grinning Halfling
Mines of Madness, Northeast of Azoun’s Hold in the eastern border of Cormyr

Weather:
Description: Rain
Temperature: Moderate
High: 54°F (12°C)
Low: 41°F (5°C)
Relative: Normal
Wind Force: Light
Wind Speed: 2 mph (3 kph)
Rain: Rain reduces visibility by half, imposing a -4 penalty on Spot and Search checks. It also imposes a -4 penalty on Listen checks and ranged weapon attacks. Rain automatically extinguishes candles, torches, and similar unprotected flames. It causes protected flames, such as those of lanterns, to dance wildly and has a 50% chance to extinguish these lights.

Light Wind: A gentle breeze, having little or no game effect.



The Purple Dragons settled in for a good night’s rest.

To be continued…


Heroes:

Cormyrian Purple Dragons: Bryan, Brando, and Waingrove

Companions & NPCs:

Sword Captain Dorin Goldhammer


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"Does it taste like chicken'?'"
Land of the Purple Dragon (Adventures in Cormyr)

Tarsakh 5, 1481, The Year of the Grinning Halfling
Mines of Madness, Northeast of Azoun’s Hold in the eastern border of Cormyr

Weather:
Description: Rain
Temperature: Moderate
High: 54°F (12°C)
Low: 41°F (5°C)
Relative: Normal
Wind Force: Light
Wind Speed: 2 mph (3 kph)
Rain: Rain reduces visibility by half, imposing a -4 penalty on Spot and Search checks. It also imposes a -4 penalty on Listen checks and ranged weapon attacks. Rain automatically extinguishes candles, torches, and similar unprotected flames. It causes protected flames, such as those of lanterns, to dance wildly and has a 50% chance to extinguish these lights.

Light Wind: A gentle breeze, having little or no game effect.



To be continued…


Heroes:

Cormyrian Purple Dragons: Bryan, Brando, and Waingrove

Companions & NPCs:

Sword Captain Dorin Goldhammer


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"The Hunt for Goblins"
Land of the Purple Dragon (Adventures in Cormyr)

Tarsakh 3, 1481, The Year of the Grinning Halfling
Northeast of Azoun’s Hold in the eastern border of Cormyr

Weather:


Sword Captain Dorin Goldhammer entered the dilapidated shack after finishing his morning business outside.

“Soldiers, I have discovered what appears to be humanoid tracks outside.”

Bryan stood after he finished lacing his boots. “Sir, perhaps those tracks belong to the humanoids we fought yester—”

“Don’t you think I know the difference between those tracks and the ones I found?” the Sword Captain snapped in response. “The tracks I found were clearly smaller than the ones belonging to the creatures we fought yesterday. Although I am—at the moment—still uncertain as to what those creature were, I suspect these tracks belong to goblins. The tracks lead towards the hills to the north.”

“What are your orders sir?” Waingrove asked.

“We will follow the tracks and slay every one of those foul things we come across,” the Sword Captain said with absolute finality.


To be continued…


Heroes:

Cormyrian Purple Dragons: Bryan, Brando, and Waingrove

Companions & NPCs:

Sword Captain Dorin Goldhammer


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"On His Majesty's Secret Service"
Land of the Purple Dragon (Adventures in Cormyr)

29 Ches – Tarsakh 2, 1481, The Year of the Grinning Halfling
Azoun’s Hold, Eastern Cormyr

Weather:
Description: Cloudy
Temperature: Moderate
High: 50°F (10°C)
Low: 40°F (4°C)
Relative: Normal
Wind Force: Light
Wind Speed: 1 mph (1 kph)
Light Wind: A gentle breeze, having little or no game effect.


Sword Captain Dorin Goldhammer was an imposing dwarf and Purple Dragon officer.

His chainmail and shield were polished to a perfect shine, while his uniform was as sharp as the features on his face.

Dwarf2
“Listen here you poor excuses for soldiers!” the Sword Captain barked. He paced back and forth before a group of soldiers assembled before him. “I am here to make sure this mission is a success. We have been ordered to travel to the Mines of Madness in search of the Forever Stone, a powerful artifact rumored to have many great powers, first among them the power to grant eternal life.”

He intentionally paused to let the last few words settle in before he continued.

“According to half-forgotten lore,” the Sword Captain said in a tone mimicking that of some great historian. “The stone was hidden from the world long ago by evil wizards and greedy dwarves who coveted its power. They are said to have perished in an orgy of magic and bloodshed after turning on one another.”

He stopped pacing and turned to face the soldiers standing at attention before. He made sure he had their complete attention before he continued. “Naturally, we don’t expect all the rumors to be true, but one thing is certain. Over the years, many have tried to claim the Forever Stone, but none have succeeded. However, gentlemen, I intend to be the first to succeed where many have failed before us. I will not lie to you, soldiers. To retrieve the Forever Stone would catapult me into the annals of awesomeness. Bards will sing of my glory, while historians record what I have accomplished. And so here we are, on the brink of greatness, ready to descend into the depths in search of glory and, more important, fame!”


To be continued…


Heroes:

Cormyrian Purple Dragons: Bryan, Brando, and Waingrove

Companions & NPCs:

Sword Captain Dorin Goldhammer


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"The Vault"
Against the Giants (Sunset Mountains)

7 Marpenoth, 1479, Year of the Ageless One
Past Midnight, Far Hills, Sunset Vale, Steading of the Hill Giants

Weather:
Description: Windy
Temperature: Moderate
High: 57°F (13°C)
Low: 38°F (3°C)
Relative: Warmer than normal
Wind Force: Moderate
Wind Speed: 11 mph (17 kph)
Moderate Wind: A steady wind with a 50% chance of extinguishing candles, torches, and similar unprotected flames.


With dwarves safely out of the dungeon, the surviving adventurers gathered together in the steading’s main hall. Their plan, to go back into the dungeons below to free the human captives being held in an area known as The Vault.


To be continued…


The Company of the Siren’s Song:

Note: Caldreas and Dred were killed by Nosnra and The Keeper in “A Chief’s Last Stand”.

Lo-kag, Therand, Deb

Companion(s):

Javok (half-orc scout from Asbravn)


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