Dornath

Attack on Brindol
The first meeting

It was a quiet evening in Brindol’s Stag and Antler Tavern. Tor Hammerfist took up his usual place at the bar, chatting with Cicely, the bartender and owner. At a corner table, Orrin Klaeve had taken pity on an itinerant calling himself John the Beggar, and bought him a drink to raise his spirits. As the waitress, Alia, took their order, she flirted coyly with the Northman.

Eadric Godwinson, a newcomer to Brindol, sat alone, surveying the other patrons. As he did, two large and rather drunk townsmen, Zeke and Vigor, stumbled to his table. The boasted that they were members of the town watch, and demanded to see his papers. Although he produced them quickly, and identified himself as a former soldier, Zeke and Vigor seemed ready to pick a fight. Before they could, however, an middle-aged man with a hooked nose approached them and calmed them with a few words and a round of drinks. He warned Eadric to choose his words more carefully around the town watch, for in Brindol, as in all of Dornath, suspicion and tensions are high.

Moments later, the door to the tavern burst open. Four hobgoblins rushed in, brutally slaying Alia and several patrons at nearby tables. One of them shouted something gutteral, which sounded like “For Sinruth! For the Hand!” A smaller goblin followed them in, and threw the first of several white-hot torches, which hit the bottles behind the bar, igniting them.

Panic erupted in the tavern. Several patrons ran for the back door, only to be slain by a second group of hobgoblins. A few of the townsfolk resisted, wielding bottles, pewter plates, and skewers of meat as weapons. Zeke made a valiant attempt, but was one of the first to die. The hook-nosed stranger had better luck, landing a few glancing blows to the head of one of the creatures. The bartender, Cicely, grabbed a hidden crossbow from behind the bar, striking down another.

Orrin leaped from his seat, cutting down several creatures with his greatsword. Eadric fired massive blasts of energy, incinerating multiple enemies at a time, while Tor called upon the blessings of Pelor to smite them. Even the ragged beggar joined the fray, moving faster and more nimbly than his gray hair would suggest.

Once most of the creatures had been dispatched, one of the small goblins bolted out the back door. Tor, John, and Eadric chased and subdued him, while Orrin, the hook-nosed man, and Cicely gathered townsfolk for a bucket brigade. As they did, Orrin saw a huge creature, three times the size of a man, lumbering up the main street. Behind him, he pulled a wagon with two goblin sharpshooters. As the ogre slowly pulled the wagon up the street, it threw flaming casks at buildings and townsfolk, setting the small blazes up and down the street.

Orrin retreated inside, and arranged a hasty plan with his new allies. When the ogre stepped into view of the tavern window, Orrin, Tor, and John crashed through the window, attacking the ogre with every resource they had left. Eadric hung back, firing magical missiles through the window. The ogre was an overwhelming opponent, landing devastating blows with each swing of his club. After a long and fierce battle, which left both Orrin and John bloodied and unconscious in the street, the heroes prevailed.

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Eadric's Journal, Entry 1
Wait...he used his daily power when?!?

Captain’s Log Stardate 42.31415

Wizard’s Log Day 1*

This has proven to be a far more interesting day than I would have imagined when I woke up. The day began with a visit to see Hyel, the local loremaster here in town. It appears that my trail has grown cold. Perhaps the rumors of the abandoned Magister’s Keep in the area are just that: rumors. Hyel could give me no specifics about the location of the keep, or even of the probability that such a thing exists. His best advice was to “head into the Witchwood and hope for the best”. Yes, that is an excellent plan, Hyel. Maybe when I get back the Sugarbeet Fairy will have left a present under my bed as well?

My frustrations with Hyel and this failure of a quest drove me to the Stag and Antler. Not the nicest tavern I have rested in, but certainly good enough for me—and probably better than the people of Brindol deserve, if their welcoming committee is any indication. Things were proceeding as they should at any reputable inn: a game of chance for large stakes of gold was going on in the corner, a beggar was performing a good bit of diplomacy for the coin purse of a fellow patron, a man of the cloth was doing his own bit of diplomacy in an attempt to win over the barmaid, and the drunken town watch was throwing its ounces around. This peaceful scene, straight out of one of Neland’s Tales of Rural Dornath, was interrupted by a large, coordinated, savage attack by some of the greenskins in the area. Fighting under the banner of Sinruth and the Hand (note to self: find out more about them), numerous goblinoid creatures invaded Brindol with the purpose of lighting the place up like a Harvest bonfire.

Several of the more capable patrons (notably not including my new friends from the town watch) successfully warded off the first wave of the attack. I was pleased that the goblins and hobgoblins attacked in the exact formation favored by some of my spells. If I ever find this Sinruth person I must compliment him on his horrid tactical training of his “troops”. I fared less well in the subsequent fight against an ogre. Maybe it was the loss of adrenaline as the fight wore on, but my aim with my spells grew worse. I finally managed to connect with a burst of magical energy that took out the hobgoblins, the ogre’s corpse, the cart they were riding on, several buildings in the area, and possibly a few of the lower-orbiting planets. I am not sure if that made up for my failings during the rest of the fight, but it definitely made me feel better. I am not sure what tomorrow will bring, especially given my setbacks in finding the Magister’s Keep, but perhaps the search for information about Sinruth and/or the Hand will yield further magical secrets. Corellon works in mysterious ways…

  • - Obviously Eadric would not date things from the start of the campaign, but I will try to in order to keep things simple.
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Tor's letter to Golran
Guess who's not going back to the Stag & Antler

Golran,

You’ll never believe the night I had! You’re always chiding me to get my nose out of my books and just go mix things up, and I have to say I think you’re right now.

I was chatting up Cicely at the Stag & Antler, getting nowhere as usual, when the door busts open and in come a whole mess of goblins! They cut down a waitress and a few locals before anyone could react. Most of the locals were useless but there was a mage who lit the lot of them up – you should have seen it (though it stunk something awful), and this guy with a HUGE sword let into them like he knew what he was doing. Even the wiry geezer in the corner was jumping over tables and gutting goblins left and right. Glorious!

I stuck close to the mage and we bashed the hell out of those goblins. I even remembered to revert to my priestly training and blast a few greenskins, though it was hard to resist melee. In the end, that’s what did me in. The four of us that knew what we were doing cleaned up a few more goblins sneaking in from the back and then… by Pelor you should have seen the size of this ogre. We did our best but he took out me, the swordsman, and the old guy.

Thank Pelor the mage was still up and he managed to finish off the ogre and drag us to safety before everything blew up but good. My beard is still singed in spots and the Stag & Antler is history! I was able to heal up the other guys once I regained conciousness, and introduce myself to the folks I was fighting alongside.

They’re a solid group of guys, I sense good in them, and I think I may be able to convince them to stick together for a little while longer. If this goblin incursion is any sign, this town may need a better class of defenders than our sickly town watch, and that may in turn solve some of those tuition problems I’ve been telling you about. Its not like I have anything else going on right now, so some part time work protecting the town may end up getting me enough coin for school and enough practical experience to make up for the training I’m currently missing.

I’ll keep you posted.

Send ale, weapons, and coin! -Tor

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John the Beggar's Private Journal, Day 1

Yeeeeargh! It’s not a real fight unless you end up bloody and unconscious in the street. And now, I finally have hope. But I’m getting ahead of myself, let’s start at the beginning. It’s been six months since I arrived in Brindol, the latest in a string of disappointments. Today was going to be like all the rest, until I saw the young fellow with the huge sword. Right away I knew he was going to be different. First I hit him up for some coin, then when he seemed intrigued I just kept talking – tales of adventure, romance, treasure, nevermind if it was true or not. He was hooked, wanted to hear more, so we ended up in the Stag and Antler with the first tolerable mug of ale I’ve had in far too long. To be sure there were plenty of raised eyebrows, and some wrinkled noses. But in the end they saw the sword and I will be death went looking for easier targets. They found one in a weary-looking guy sitting alone at a table. Tried to pick a fight they did, but the ex-soldier refused to be drawn in. Cooler heads prevailed, just in time for some goblins to blow in the door, trying to burn the whole darn place down. After that there wasn’t much thinking, the red blood mist took over like it always does. We must have fought well together, because the next thing I remember I’m lying in the road with a storm of crows dwarf looking down at me. There’s an ogre dead rotting in the street, and more corpses than you can shake a stick at piled up inside the burning tavern. Now by the might of my steel dagger I see before me, I may have found the ones I need to help me. And yet, I wonder… Such an unlikely bunch to be sure – an amorous dwarf, a mage uncertain of his calling, a far too chivalrous young fighter, and me old enough to be his grandad. But if we all stick together, and learn fight all-one as one then we might actually make this work. In any case it’s going to be a fun ride – I finally have a chance, and I’m gonna grab hold with both hands!

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A letter tucked away in the crypt
Pointy part towards enemy...

A letter tucked behind one of the tombs in the room with the secret entrance.

(Hopefully people knowing the secret entrance will use it right away, but those following after us would search the room for an entrance and find this note)

Greetings. I am Tor Hammerfist, from the first search party sent by Efram. I trust you are our backup, and well armed. The trick to proceeding further in the crypt is to spill a small amount of blood into the grate below the status of Pelor, then the middle tomb will be movable.

If you do not have a cleric with you, I’d suggest you get one as there is some serious evil afoot here. The contents of the murals in the next room are pretty disturbing. Even more disturbing is the fact that evil has settled in here long enough to decorate.

I shall attempt to mark the passages we take with smudges of soot on the nearby wall so that you can reach us and our quarry as efficiently as possible. Initial resistance seemed light (two hobgoblins and two goblins) but proved challenging for us regardless. We are currently recovering and will proceed as quickly as possible. I will ensure we remove this letter if we exit the crypt before you arrive, so if you’re reading this we are still inside.

Tor Hammerfist

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Gallahad, Lancelot and I jump out of the dead squirrel

Wizard’s Log Day 2

Today…things got complicated. It turns out that the greenskin skirmish I found myself drawn into yesterday at the bar was part of a much larger assault. The assault itself seems likely to have been a distraction. The goblinoid forces – led from afar by someone or thing known as Sinruth (possibly a particularly intelligent and fierce goblin, but possibly not) – left the city with a number of items belonging to a local military hero. They may have gotten away with it without much cry from the townsfolk. The items might hold historical interest but they are hardly worth dying in an assault over. But they also abducted several townsfolk. That always gets a response.

I have joined up with the three fellows who acquitted themselves well during the bar fight in desperate pursuit of the goblinoid forces. I am excited that I may have found some competent adventuring companions. Corellon knows it would be easier to improve my magical talents if I had some other people to work with. On the one hand, if I get any inkling that the four of us are some sort of mythical band of fellows – foretold three thousand years ago by some blind hermit who lived on top of a rock pole in the middle of the desert – I am done. I know what happens to the wizards in those groups. They either go mad, turn evil, or die. And they never, ever get laid. On the other hand, traveling with John has to improve my chances with the ladies, if only by comparison.

I am writing this entry from the inside of a crypt in which the goblins are holed up. We have taken a break so that Tor can leave a message for the cavalry. I think he is skeptical of our chances. You would think a Dwarf of god such as himself would have more faith. I have complete faith in him. I saw the look on his face when he found out there were undead down here – I’ll take my chances on him versus any living dead up to and including vampires, lichs, or my ex-girlfriend.

I think I see him coming back. Onward we go.

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From now on we give all the magic items to you.
That's right, I got it in writing.

Wizard’s Log Day 3

Some days sound more heroic than others. Perhaps the day where we bravely vanquished goblin pets, valiantly avoided stepping on mushrooms, gallantly rested repeatedly and boldly failed to successfully cross pit traps…several times, is not one we want to look back on often. We did manage to kill quite a few goblins, hobgoblins, minidragons (it sounds much more heroic when I describe them that way), and one goblin crossbowman with undeniable sex appeal and great hair.

Things I learned today:

  1. Do not make the beggar angry
  2. If you do make him angry, do not let him get behind you
  3. Pits are for falling in
  4. Discretion probably is the better part of valor
  5. So that’s what a healing surge feels like
  6. That flaming sphere comes in handy
  7. Even undeniably sexy goblins with great hair can be lit on fire
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A short prayer
Know thy place

A short prayer

Your most radiant holiness, thank you for your many blessings.
  • Thank you for blessing our party with angry drakes so that I may learn to stay away from angry things.
  • Thank you for blessing Orrin with shiny new armor.
  • Thank you for blessing our party with John the Beggar as he kicks much ass.
  • Thank you for blessing our adventures with pits so that I may learn the lesson of humility. Twice.
  • Thank you for blessing our party with Eadric as orbs of fire also kick much ass.
  • And finally, thank you for helping me to learn my lesson: being comfortable in my role as your supporting, healing servant and to stop bemoaning how I kick little to no ass. Next time, if I need to re-learn my place as a servant of faith, perhaps you could think of a way to convey this without bringing so many hobgoblins, archers, and angry drakes to stab, shoot and claw my friends to death?

I will humbly follow your divine instruction and re-focus my study on supporting the forces of good through your grace.

Your servant,
Tor

P.S. I’m still waiting for some undead.
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JtB Private Journal Entry #2

Where was I? Oh yes… after we finally killed the ogre for a while we just sat in shock. We decided to meet again the next morning, and the dwarf gave me a place to sleep (apparently he didn’t mind the stench). The next day we saw the councilman – the gaurds gave me some trouble over my papers, I have to remember to fix them up a bit. Then we eventually, painfully got the story from that goblin. Now maybe it’s just a coincidence – organized goblins and ogres taking hostages, and this “Sinruth” just happened to set up shop in Rivenroar’s old crypt. But I’m worried there’s something deeper, more sinister going on here. In any case, that’s when I made up my mind that we had to go… to find death, and maybe some answers.

We got to the crypt easily enough, and eventually figured out the bloody trick to get in. Then as we passed through the crypt I had a flashback, to a time before the war. I saw again the brutality, the screams, the endless inter-office memoranda signed in suspicious brown-red ink. Then it was gone…

In any case, once we got into the lower levels there was no time for thinking. Right away we had to fight our way through. As usual I don’t remember much of the fighting, just flashes. After the first fight ended, well… like my card shark buddy once said, “They had some aces, but my hand had the hearts.” Then the dwarf got to demonstrate his… grace. I can’t believe he fell – twice! I should really show him some tricks to break his fall – maybe then it won’t hurt as much. Then we fought through one more room, and the wizard got to show off a bit. All these battles have given me some ideas, for ducking and dodging during a fight – if I can get in a good position, then my daggers will drink deep.

Should I tell my new companions my suspicions, my fears, my nightmares? I can’t do this on my own – no, no, they wouldn’t believe me, it’s too much. I have no proof, it’s all conjecture. But if I’m right… well, maybe we’ll get some answers in this bloody crypt. Hopefully we’ll be in time to stage a rescue. Or, if my worst fears are realized… then we’ll have to contend with… what used to be… the hostages.

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JtB Private Journal Entry #3

Spiders. I hate spiders.

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