Call To Arms!

Session Three
Portals and Prisoners

After slaying the goblins in their makeshift living quarters, the party was able to take a short rest and decide what direction they would head next. This allowed Varis ample opportunity to identify the totem he found as a Pure Spirit Totem +1.

The party decided to head west through double doors since the pits that layed to the north may pose quite a threat to some. The group took formation and proceeded through the doors. As they rounded a corner to the right they saw a large room up ahead and the apparent source of the crackling noise that Sven heard through the doors. The room was illuminated in blue hues from an image the crackled with magical energy. The image was of sinister looking castle in the middle of a swamp. The party searched around the room for any dangers before inspecting the glowing image.

Then Sven approached the image and reached out with his hand…

To Sven’s surprise, his hand went right through the image. The image flowed away from Sven’s outreached arm, like ripples upon a pond’s surface, and slowly revealed the room behind the image. Sven removed his arm, which was unaffected by the prodding, and the image slowly reconstituted back to its original form. Murmurs from the rest of the group remarked “What is it?” and “Is that a portal?”.

A few seconds later their questions were answered…

Out from the image came a large, jelly-like creature. Varis recognized it as an ooze, an Ochre Jelly to be exact. It sensed the closest creature (Thor Manfoot) and flowed its way to him. But the heroes were no match for the ooze as they quickly took half its lifeforce with a few blows. Then the jelly spluttered and split into two creatures. The heroes wasted no time in dispatching the ooze and finished the battle unscathed.

But the battle was not over…

Suddenly, Varis and Sven felt an aura of cold about them. This chilling presence made them feel like their defenses were weakened. As they turned to confront their aggressors there was no one in sight. However, both Sven and Varis had ample senses to know the whereabouts of at least one of their assailants.

The battle commenced and the opportunistic specters found they were in an unwinnable battle. Sven, calling upon the divine strength within him, laid one specter to rest with a devastating radiant blow. The other specter was slain before it even had a chance to retreat.

With the battle finally over the heroes took formation again and headed through a pair of double doors to the west. They rounded another corner and found themselves within a dark room lined with alcoves. The skeletal remains from within the alcoves had been strewed across the floor from apparent looting.

Suddenly, the north door of the room flew open…

The party took formation and wondered what would cause the door to open. After a few intense seconds, two fiery scorpion-like creatures appeared in the middle of the room. Shrazkil, from his arcane training, knew these creatures to be called magma claws. The fiery, magical creatures were no match for the mighty heroes. However, just as the creatures were put to death, the party was attacked by crossbows from the shadows.

“Gnomes! What are they doing in a goblin hideout!”, exclaimed Varis.

The heroes had two sneaky gnomes on their hands that were using thier natural stealthy abilities to perplex the party. But two small fey creatures were no match for five maturing heroes, and the gnomes were slain in the most horrible of fashion. Thor Manfoot, in a display of raw strength, picked up on gnome and snapped its body in two.

The party searched the remains of the alcoves and looked around the room for clues as to where any prisoners may have been taken. Alas, the search for footprints or any other telltale signs turned up nothing. However, one of the gnomes did carry with him an iron key.

The party had two choices on its hands – two routes that traveled north – one to the west and one to the east. They decided on the western route and took it down some stairs into another dark, dant room. As they approached the room they heard shouts of “Help! Get me out of here!.” When they arrived they found an older human man locked with a cell. They tried the iron key they found and click! it opened the cell.

The heroes had found Sertanian.

Sertanian introduced himself to the party as the castellan of the Great Hall of Valor. He mentioned he had been kept with Kartenix and the cook a short while ago. He feared for both and hoped the party would start up the search very quickly. And they did just that.

The party made their way back to the alcove room and now took the eastern route north. They proceeded up a flight of stairs and found themselves on a landing that was completely filled with spidery webs. Within the webbing were three spider-like creatures, guarding the passages beyond.

Varis called upon his knowledge of nature to remarkably recite just about every facet of knowledge about these creatures, called ettercaps – their kinship with spiders, their use of poisons, their freedom of movement within webs – the list went on and on.

The battle commenced and an ettercap in the back used its webbing to immobilize the heroes and keep them pinned within the entrance of the room while the two spidery creatures in the front attacked with fercious blows from their greataxes. Thor and Thales, the two frontliners for the party, took many blow from these creatures until they were finally able to kill one. This allowed the other heroes a chance to reach the ettercap in the back. One by one the ettercaps dropped until the heroes were once again victorious. This fight, and the difficult terrain caused by the webbing within the room, posed a more difficult challenge than the rest, but the party of heroes were becoming a force to be reckoned with.

They searched the webbed room and cut down the webbing as they went. After several minutes they found a gruesome sight: a human male wrapped in webs, his face pale and eyes bulged. Sertanian knew the human well.

The heroes had found Kartenix.

Sertanian had feared for Kartenix, for the captain of the Brindol guard had hatched a plan to overtake his captors. For some reason Sertanian surmised that his foolhardy plan resulted in his current predictament.

The heroes also found a couple sacks next to the dead body – one filled with residuum and another filed with gold coins.

Another decision as to the direction of travel: to the west up a flight of stairs, or north through a pair of double doors. The party decided to continue north through the doors.

The heroes could feel within their bones that the hour grew late. Thier day had indeed been long and many hours passed since they were awoken by Geoffery. But they had a task at hand, and the lives of innocent townfolk were at stake. The heroes pressed further.

Once through the doors the party came into a dark hall that stretched far to the east. As they took formation within the hall their sunrods lit up the room ahead and the guardians within – a hobgoblin and drake. The hobgoblin acted quickly and retreated to the unseen shadows of the room ahead, leaving the drake alone to fend for itself. The heroes assailed the lone drake and shread it to pieces within a few seconds. Then they assaulted the well-armored hobgoblin which fought back with all it had.

Then the sound of footsteps began to echo within the room has the spiral staircase reverberated with sound. Reinforcements were arriving from above!

Varis sensed the danger and directed his spirit companion to block the lower part of the stairs, effectively preventing any reinforcement from entering the room. Meanwhile, the hobgoblin was able to injure Thales with relentless strikes from its flail. But it was outnumbered and soon became bloodied itself. The draconic sorcerer Shrazkil, sensing the battle was soon over, belted out a mighty roar and commanded the goblin to drop all arms and succom to his will. The creature’s will had been broken by Shrazkil and it dropped his flail at the sorcerer’s feet and tried to flee from its impending capture. But it could not escape the agile Sven who caught up with the beast and slayed it before it escaped.

With the reinforcements now retreating back above and the hobgoblin and drake dead, the heroes had another victory at hand. They quickly searched around the room – another makeshift living quarters for the goblinoids. Within the mess they found more gold coins, a potion and a pair of black boots graced with the image of a stalking panther.

It was late, and the string of vitories started to take their toll upon the heroes. They decided they needed an extended rest – but rest where?

Session Two
Into The Catacombs

After their successful meeting with Councilman Troyas, the Gensai Spaaz had second thoughts about pursuing the goblins. He tells the others of reoccuring dreams and his desire to get to Overlook. Without much formalities, Spaaz leaves Brindol and heads to Overlook alone.

Meanwhile, the other heroes make their way over to the Brindol towngreen where they find the hobgoblin called Morrik. Morrik is kept in stocks and watched by two Brindol guards. The townfolk have not been kind to Morrik, as evidenced by smashed tomatoes around the prisoner’s feet.

Also present is a shadowy, robed figure. He tells the heroes that he too has business with the goblin. The heroes tell the robed person that Morrik might hold information that could lead them to finding the goblins that sacked Brindol the night before. Upon hearing this, the robed figure agrees to assist the heroes in the interrogation.

The interrogation of the prisoner proceeded and the heroes had no problem with intimidating the goblin. The creature whimpered and whined after each pressing question until finally it broke down and told the heroes what they need to know: the hobgoblin warlord Sinruth leads the Hand and told the goblins to sack Brindol and take prisoners. They were to return the prisoners to Sinruth’s hideout, some catacombs under an old ruined castle. Morrik used his shackled feet to draw a crude map in the dirt, aiding in the directions to the catacomb hideout.

With the information on hand and their new long-toothed ally, the heroes started on their journey to find the goblins. But first they revisited Councilman Troyas and pressed him for further assistance in rescuing the prisoners, specifically the need for horses to help transport the prisoners back to Brindol. Troyas, having just denied the heroes request for additional reward money not an hour ago, was visibly irritated by the request. He reiterated that Brindol was just looted and the town’s resources are needed to help rebuild. He went on further to explain that he thought adventurers were a resourceful bunch and figured out creative ways to challenges. However, the heroes diplomatically beseeched until Troyas finally agreed to lend assistance. Troyas agreed to lend the heroes one of his personal pack mules and sent a page retrieve the beast.

With the pack mule in tow, the heroes head north-northeast from Brindol in search of the goblins. Sven, the new shadowy ally, does his best to follow the goblin tracks while Varis watches for natural hazards along the way. The two guides are able to keep the party out of danger and on the tracks, and the heroes soon find themselves are the ruined castle of Rivenroar. Castle Rivenroar has been reduced to ruin by time and vandals and is nothing more than a clearing of rubble and stone. A stairway on the property leading down into darkness gives clue that the adventurers had found the entrance to the catacombs. They tie up the mule and head into the depths of the crypts.

Right away the heroes were thrown into battle as gobinoid guards readied for the intruders in the entry chamber. Two flail-wielding hobgoblins charged in while two sharpshooters pelted the heroes with bolts from the backline. One of the goblins opened a door to the north and then a loud grinding sound was heard throughout the chamber. The heroes continued to battle and the goblin frontline eventually fell. In the midst of battle, two flaming braziers in the back of the room began to move. After a few seconds a ball of flame shot from one brazier across the room to the other! The sorcerer, Shrazkil, was able to control the backline goblins and managed to slide the goblins into the path of the braziers. With the melee help of the mighty Thor and divine Sven, the backline goblins were dispatched before they had the chance to escape with thier lives.

The heroes had slain the guards of the entry chamber and took a few minutes to find a way to disrupt the braziers’ flaming ball. Afterwards, they contemplated on which direction to take next: to the west through doors marked “To Von Urdstadt”, to the east through doors marked “To Von Jallach” (a late family of local prominence, remarked Varis), or to the north and downstairs marked “To Rivenroar Family”. The heroes chose the adventurous route: West to the unknown.

Lead by Thor, they continue through the western doors to a dark hallway. Turning a corner, Thor noticed a brightly-lit room full of hobgoblins up ahead. It appeared these creatures were ready for battle and charged at Thor on first sight. But charging the heroes was a fatal mistake – the hobgoblins fell upon the heroes like helpless waves upon the rocks. They stormed into the goblins’ quarters and assailed the apparent leader of this group, and aided by the mightiest of blows from Thor, dropped the final hobgoblin in mere seconds.

But the heroes were not free from danger yet. Just then the a door to the north opened and two goblins with hand crossbows came darting through firing away. Sven took the blows but remained on his feet. With the rest of the party approaching from the back, the heroes were able to slay the goblins and receive timely healing from the shaman, Varis.

Another room explored and another heap of dead goblins. This room appeared to be living quarters for the goblin scum and the adventurers did not hesitate to search through the bedrolls and sacks. Their efforts were rewarded when they found two items of note: a magical healing totem and a gold bracelet (which Varis remarked was probably looted by the goblins from a corpse within the catacombs).

The heroes were pressed with another decision: do they continue west through double doors (through which Sven could hear crackling noises) or north through the opened door to a hallway with a jagged, dark pit a few feet away.

Their decision and adventure shall continue next time.

Session One

As the news from Overlook spreads through the Elsir Vale, the town of Brindol has steadily seen an increase in the number of adventurers passing through. Brindol is, of course, the most populated town within the thinly-populated Elsir Vale, and the town provides a convenient rest stop for adventurers on thier way to Overlook.

The first half moon will rise in a fortnight, so travelers have a few days to make the journey from Brindol to Overlook.

As night falls upon Brindol, the Antler and Thistle tavern finds itself having another typical evening. The presence of a few adventurers doesn’t seem too odd under the circumstances. Milling about the tavern is a short but powerful looking man armored in scale and carrying a large executioner’s axe over his shoulder; a dragonborn of icy-blue scales with an aura of stormful arcana about him; a genasi with purple-hued skin and red-flaring, crystalline yellow hair who wields two triple-headed flails; another dragonborn dressed in plate whose bright-red scales glisten in the light; and a deva covered in blue armor, white silk, and a pair of small decorative blue feathered wings on his back, whose features are like an old statue, ageless in appearance.

Suddenly, the doors of the Antler and Thistle are knocked of thier hinges and a band of hobgoblins rushes into the tavern. Soon after more hobgoblins join the fray aided by a few goblins wielding burning torches. However, the goblinoids have picked the wrong tavern to ramsack – they are quickly slain by the adventurers present. The quick-to-act adventurers are even able to save the tavern from burning down, but not before the tavernkeeper perishes in the flames of the bitumen torches.

As the scene at the tavern came under control, a throng of yelling townfolk alerted the adventurers to another problem down the street. A large ogre, yoked to a wagon and pulling two hobgoblin archers, was headed their direction. The creatures were using pitch casks as improvised explosion devices and were laying waste to all before them. That is, until they ran into our adventurers.

As the ogre turned the corner and came into view, the adventurers did not hesitate and were soon at melee with the ogre. The mighty beast was able to throw a couple ignited casks at the group, but neither toss was able to inflict any harm. Soon after the hobgoblins were bloodied, knocked down, and knocked off the wagon. The threat of any more ignited casks was eliminated.

The creatures got off a few good shots and wounded a few of our adventurers, even blooding one, but in the end the might of our heroes was too much. Bloodied and outmatched, all except one hobgoblin dropped their arms when confronted with the intimidating roar from the dragonborn sorcerer, Sharzkil. The hobgoblin that did not surrender was slain immediately after.

With the ogre defeated and yoked, the group disarmed the hobgoblin and let him run off after swearing never to return. The town guard appeared and took control of the ogre, assuring the adventurers that the creature will be brought to justice with due process. Shortly after more town guard appeared and requested help defending the North Bridge. When the adventurers reached the bridge whatever goblins were threatening had retreated back into the wilderness. Once the threat to Brindol seemed over, the heroes were approached by a man calling himself Geoffrey, who said he was proprietor of the Silk and Spoon Inn. He was awestruck by their performance against the ogre and wanted to show his gratitude by offering free lodging at his establishment. The adventurers obliged and joined Geoffrey, but only after a few of them helped the townfolk to extinguish what fires remained burning in Brindol.

The next morning the heroes were awoken to find a page of the Brindol towncouncil requesting their appearance. The adventurers were being summoned by Councilman Eoffram Troyas. The group agreed to meet Troyas and found him awaiting their arrival in his chambers. At the meeting Troyas complemented the abilities of our heroes and offered them a chance to further assist Brindol. However, before he would divulge the details of the task, he wanted to ascertain the willingness and trustworthiness of the heroes. Were they of the right character to aid Brindol?

It took some convincing, but eventually Troyas felt that he had found the right group to aid Brindol. He told the group unfortunate details about the raid the night before. It appeared the bandits had stolen several relics from the Hall of Great Valor, relics that were very sentimental to Brindol. Worse, seven citizens were missing and unaccounted for. The Council feared that the citizens were taken captive by the bandits for reasons unknown.

Troyas laid out the task before them: Rescue the citizens of Brindol and return the relics to their rightful place among the Hall of Great Valor.

Campaign Introduction
A Call to Arms!

The world has never been a safe place. Bastions of civilization populate a dark, menacing world — islands of order and reason exist in a land otherwise overrun by dark cults, vile monsters, creatures from the dark edges of the imagination, and worse. As deadly as the world is on a normal day, the civilized Elsir Vale is a haven of peace and prosperity and a retreat from other-worldly menaces.

What brought you to the Elsir Vale may be as varied as the landscape of the Vale itself – Are you a mercenary looking to earn a reputation within the Vale? Or do you hail from afar in search of lore long-buried in nearby catacombs? Perhaps you’re on a pilgrimage to a local shrine or ruin? Whatever your reasons may be, you are nonetheless intrigued by the events out of Overlook.

Overlook, the mighty dwarven city on the eastern slopes of the Stonehome Mountains and guardian of the western passes into the Elsir Vale, has sent out messengers far and wide. An orcish army encroaches! A Call to Arms!

You find yourself in possession of a notice and unfurl the parchment to read the following:

Call to Arms!

How can we forget the suffering of our kin during the Age of Chains? How can we set aside those ancient grudges when the risk of slavery is now greater than ever? Fellow warriors, the orcs are upon us, marching once more to the beat of the giants’ drum. It falls to us to stop them — to hold fast no matter their numbers. If we falter, we give into fear. It’s not just ourselves and our way of life that will suffer; all people of the Elsir Vale will perish as well. War is upon us. Now is the time for men and women of courage to stand up and defend those who cannot defend themselves.

The Council of Elders will convene at High Hall upon the first half moon. Brave souls shall be present.

For whatever your reason, you decide to tuck away the parchment and start your journey to Overlook.


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