Baldimar

Into the fray
Where the party starts the adventure!

As you near the northern border of your patrol area, a crossroads in the underdark named Kartan’s Crossing, you hear the sounds of battle, along with several odd clicking noises and gutteral high pitched grunts. Kartan’s Crossing is a T intersection with a small gallery leading down a set of steps 15 feet to the main cavern below. The main cavern is small, perhaps x by wide with exits to the East and West.

Kartan’s Crossing is roughly 9 miles North of the Dwarven city of Charnok and is lite by several light globes as are many of the main caverns, which the wizards of Charnok come to magically renew every few years.

Your base of operations when you are not actively patrolling the Northern reaches of Charnok’s terittorry is several miles South of your current position in a cavern named Quarell’s Rest which is heavily fortified and is a main choke point into the Northern part of the city. You are one of many teams which patrols the outskirts of the city. There are five main patrol stations around the city and your team is on patrol today while another team stands guard back at Quarell’s Rest and both teams are switched out with two other teams on a weekly basis when you go back to the city for military training. You generally work two weeks on patrol/fortification duty, one week of training inside the city, and one week off during a month.

The Eastern exit turns northeast and leads to another section of the Darkglass Lake, a body of water which which also has several outlets within hours walk of Charnok. There are rumors that a tribe of goblins live at the end of this tunnel on the lake, but no one you know has verified this information. The Western most exit turns due North less than a mile away and leads almost 100 miles to the Grey Dwarf kingdom of Grellistack.

As you look out over the cavern from the upper gallery, you see two dead humanoids as well as two living ones attempting to fight off a pack of some type of insectoid creatures. The humanoid creatures are around 4 foot tall, with rough greenish tinted skin and are fighting with fairly primitive weapons. One of the humanoids is bleeding from multiple wounds and appears badly hurt. There are 3 of the large insect-like creatures, each approximately 3 feet tall and around 4 feet long, along with quite a few smaller versions of various sizes. The larger ones appear to be holding back as if letting the smaller creatures take the brunt of the humanoid’s attacks or perhaps letting the smaller insects learn the ways of the hunt. The insectoid creatures seem to be speaking in a series of click and clack sounds. As you take stock of the battle, one of the larger creatures notices your group and begins moving straight toward your position, directly toward the bottom of the small gallery.

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Attack at Kartan's Crossing
The patrol encounters kruthik

The party encountered a large band of kruthik (as identified by Fangris) slaughtering goblins at Kartan’s Crossing, the end point of the normal patrol. Having been spotted, the party engaged. The goblins died and the kruthik horde almost overwhelmed the patrol. After defeating them, the party only had a short amount of time to regain their breath before another group came. Despite being a stronger group, the patrol managed to cut them off and destroy them.

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Skeletons at the gates
Where Hadarai and Erik run into a skeleton ambush on the way home

After reporting to command and splitting up after the end of the rotation, "Hadarai":http://www.obsidianportal.com/character/hadarai and Erik left the barracks to the east towards the Grove. Hadarai was heading home and Erik was coming along to meet an elven girl he took a fancy to. En route, both men noticed a dark-skinned humanoid waving his arms down a hallway. No sooner had he finished his arm waving, several skeletons – including that of some sort of giant or ogre – appeared and began approaching the duo. The two adventurers faced off against the skeletons, taking an incredible beating and dishing out what they could. Soon all of the smaller skeletons were dead and only the giant remained. Hadarai swept around to give Erik the advantage he needed, but almost died as a result when the skeleton connected with a sweep of its great axe. Erik used the distraction to finish it off and help his ally.

Both quickly recovered and investigated the scene. They found a dwarven sergeant crumpled in a corner with his throat slit. The dead man was clutching a scrap of paper with unfamiliar writing. There was no sign of the necromancer. Soon a patrol arrived to investigate the disturbance.

The adventurers returned to the watch captain, Seargent Kramnug Cavehammer, to tell their story. Flustered and unsure of what to do, the captain passed the story up to his superiors. Commander Daggrin Stonebreaker wants to meet with the party, but he is otherwise occupied for the next week. Hadarai and Erik went their separate ways and passed the word back to their compatriots. In the barracks, the giant's great axe hangs as a trophy.

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Tordok Journal Entry

It is the middle of my sleep period but I feel it is vital that I take note of the dream. It’s been two days since coming off patrol and I haven’t slept well but this…It still feels like it is pressing behind my eyes. Like I could close them and still see it. This is the dream…

It is dark and I know that I am in a large cavern, though I cannot see anything but myself. Suddenly I notice in my hands are four large keys. Two in each hand. They glow bright, but not painfully so. They appear to be made of…platinum? Suddenly they fly from my hands into the dark before me as if falling horizontally. Two to the left. Two to the right. As they slide through the gloom I notice an immense double gate about 200 paces in front of me. It is far larger than any I have ever seen or heard of. The doors seem to be made of the same metal as the keys and they glow as well. It is ornate with runes (that I do not recognize) covering every surface. It is reinforced with strong bars as big around as the stoutest of my kin. These slide into the floor and the ceiling. Hinges are on my side. What was this made to keep out? The keys slide into four niches to either side of the gate and turn. Silently the bars draw out of the floor and ceiling. The doors (at least a foot thick!) swing toward me with an equal lack of sound. There is light through the opening and this time it is blinding. Painful.

That is all I can remember. I need to speak to father about this. I wish Grand Da was still here. He told me stories of prophetic dreams, though he never claimed to have any. This was not normal. I hope I can remember this tomorrow.

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Bug Hunt
Where superior tactics and terrain prove greater than numbers

The party were back on duty and off towards Kartan’s Crossing, this time with a purpose. Command gave orders to hunt down the kruthik hive and put an end to it. The party ventured deep into the caverns, stumbling across a smuggling hole along the way (where Erik found a very nice short sword, replacing it with a cheaper goblin copy).

Eventually, they found the kruthik in multiple areas of a cave network. The party came up with a plan to draw the beasts to a choke point and butcher them. The plan worked to perfection and the first major group of kruthik was destroyed with little impact to the group.

Experience:

  • Tordok: 1457
  • Hadarai: 1930
  • Hodghar: 1497
  • Erik: 1917
  • Leoric: 1470
  • Jaymee: 1110
  • Fenris: 1068
  • Garthen: 1095

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Tordok Journal Entry 2

It must be the Western Gates! I’m sure of it now.

I was able to sketch out some of the runes from the door and took them to Bolov. My instinct in consulting the mage was good one. He had never seen an application like this. However, he did recognized exceptionally powerful runes from both dwarven and elven schools of magic.

This gave me a good idea of where to look. I do admit that I am much less familiar with the arcane section of the archives. It took longer than I expected. There have been very few times that elves and dwarves have worked together to create something that….permanent. The Exile was one such time. I found a description in a moldy treatise that was more boast than substance. No wonder it was buried. The mage described the creation of a great portal to seal off our world from the destruction above. You would think he single handedly constructed them! The key points however. There were two: He admitted to being assisted by an elven wizard named Hanchir. Hanchir! (The Transcendent One himself!) He also mentioned the keys. Four of them.

There can be no other explanation. I know what I saw. But why? Surely it cannot mean for me to attempt to open these gates. The way to them has been blocked (or so we have been told) and is some of the most dangerous tunnels in the Underdark. Even if I am able to get through to them, the surface would provide even worse horrors; even if I do not perish instantly.

Where are the keys?

These are questions for another time. I have been up for 28 hours now and am scheduled for patrol tomorrow. It looks like it’s going to be a bug hunt. May the Light of the World Forger protect us.

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The Hunt Continues
Where the party continues to seek the kruthik nest

The party continued through the elaborate cave system, looking for the source of the kruthik infestation, taking the Eastern passage in liu of heading further North.  The group continued to encounter passages heading both East and North, with the groups leader Erik deciding continue heading Eastward during each branch.

After two smaller skirmishes, the party found themselves in a bigger nest. The fight was hard fought, but successful due to excellent tactics and the very effective sleep spell on the kruthic hivemaster by Lia.  After completing one of the smaller skirmishes, a search revealed several additional kobold skeletons mixed in with mostly golbins and a few humans and dwarven remains.  

One exceptionally large kobold remains was also found along with what appears to be a scale of a of some large reptilian creature. The scale appears to have been sewn into a tattered cape. The scale is shaped like a crescent on one side and coming to a blunt point on the other with the crescent side being jet black fading to an deep purple color.  With an overall size of around 7 inches, the scale must belong to a creature of immense size.

Tordok performed rituals to lay the bones of his fellow dwarves to rest and provide them with a fast journey to the Halls of Moradin.  

Experience: 735 XP
Status: The party is taking an extended rest

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XP Totals
Player Character XP Level Need for next level XP Diff to Level
Matt L Erik 3068 3 3750 682
Chris C Hadarai 2665 3 3750 1085
Josh H Tordok 2608 3 3750 1142
Cloudwalker Lia 1785 2 2250 465
Jeremiah Baern Boltthrower 1685 2 2250 565
John M Hodghar 1497 2 2250 753
Mike H Fenris 1484 2 2250 766
Jeff S Leoric 1470 2 2250 780
Matt H Jaymee 1110 2 2250 1140
           
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Nest hunting
Where the party closes in on the Kruthik home nest and receive an unexpected visitor

After resting and regaining their strength, the party advanced through the tunnels looking for the source of the kruthik horde. The group found the first group in an open cavern and quickly and methodically dealt with the creatures. Unfortunately, Leoric was separated from the group and killed by an adult kruthik before help could arrive.

Throughout the fight, Hadarai felt a rising magical energy throughout the entire cavern, like crackling energy. It rose to a crescendo until, with a crack that seemed to split the universe apart, a person appeared out of thin air. He seemed to attack the kruthik, so the party decided to wait until after their foes were dead before investigating the newcomer.

Once the fight ended, the visitor named Gerthion gave his story – he was an apprentice mage picking up components for his master, Hethrion, of the distant city of Snortifyndel. He regularly used a teleportation gateway to meet Dhaxigar, a traveling drow merchant. The party agreed to allow the sorcerer to accompany them, despite the random and unreliable nature of his magic.

Heading south through the tunnels, the group found a small alcove which contained what appeared to be a very deep natural chimney 4 foot wide. There was a high concentration of kobold remains in the areas surrounding this alcove. Agreeing to investigate the chimney at a later point, they pressed onward. The party then found themselves in an even larger tunnel and found another group of the kruthik, along with a larger specimen that seemed to be some sort of Hive Mother. The party dealt with the group, delaying and obstructing the Hive Mother while the other adults and young were dealt with. With the kruthik dead, the party took a short rest to evaluate their options.

Experience: 763 XP
Treasure: Large purple gemstone (unknown value), 2 gp, 15 sp, 48 cp

Notes: The while all the other monetary treasure so far has been either simple metal blanks or coins of Garnok, the two gold pieces bear a design on both sides unknown to anyone. One side contains an engraving of some type of winged serpent with his tail coiling down at the bottom, while the other side is engraved with two crossed sabers.

Additionally, under on of the kobold bodies is a small scroll tube sealed with red wax.

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Return
7/16/11

Hadari spoke to Adrialla Brightwing about finding the surface. She asked him not to share information because of a massive drow army coming to destroy everyone.

Tordok and Hodghar in library researching:

  • Dwarven Prince Grathnor, whose tomb we found.
  • 4 keys to gate
    • we have 1
    • elves might have one (Telthoran)
    • gnomes might have another
  • Hodghar’s Axe – Wilholm of Clifton, Protector and friend of Prince Grathnar, stood valiantly against the hordes. Kord, seeing his skill and bravery, chose to make permanent Bless Weapon on axe (standard +1 with something else)

Party meets up again. All agree not to share information with public. Tordok has some leads – Snortyfindel and Elven (Telthoran).

Adrialla tells Hadarai that the harvests are getting smaller…. the plants are “weak” and beginning to shrivel. Need to check the source of the water supply. Tons of springs to feed into the lake – flows into dark sea.

Plan: Going down to investigate Hodghar’s visions, then investigate lake, then Snortyfindel gnome/key thing.


Walking through lower class section of time. Shady guy asks if we want to make money. Erik is dumb enough to accept. There is a pit, he is going to fight an ogre.

Three of us fought and won lots of money.

Roleplaying XP: 150

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