The Vacant Throne

Auspicious Beginnings, Part 2

29th day of Jinar, 133rd Year of Assembly
(1067th Year of Nerath)
20th Hour
Strongbad Ruins, Outside Assembly

Six hours of solid rest has done wonders, most of your aches are gone, though the harrowing memory of close death experiences remain. Bright day has mostly likely passed to dimming evening outside, but safe within the crypt, it almost seems as if time stands still. You hear no sounds through the thick walls and you wonder if any of the remaining denizens of the complex have found the results of your handiwork.

Weapons in hand, you unlock the crypt doors and peer through them back into the hallway…

* * * * *

DM Notes: Session 2 – July 12, 2010

Obsidian Portal is inconsistent with its use of italics and HTML code, apparently, so some of the previous posts may get screwed up by subsequent ones. I will not try to fix it.

Additional Note (July 27, 2010): The following links were put in before the latest Compendium change. Apparently the ID numbers may have changed. If they link to the wrong place, blame Wizards.

In the remains of the library, a potion case (100 gp) containing a potion of healing and a potion of resistance (fire) (level 4) was hidden amid a pile of shelves, debris, and loose papers.

After entering the summoning room, the noise from the caged elementals brought a gnoll savage priest (Level 4 Controller) out, and with a pull of a lever, trapped you in the room with a magma claw and 3 magma runners (Level 2 Skirmisher). (150 XP each.)

The bedroom of the gnoll priest contained a potion of resistance (fire) (level 4), talon amulet +1, runic hand crossbow +1. 2 alchemist’s frost (level 1) and 50 gp worth of residuum were found in the laboratory opposite the bedroom.

Through a secret passage connecting the bedroom to the master bedroom of the complex, you barged your way into a room and surprised a human blood rager and his two concubines, a human devestator (Level 3 Elite Controller [Leader]) and human crazed berserker (Level 2 Brute), in bed together. They managed to grab their weapons (but not clothes) to engage you in combat. (195 XP each.)

You found dwarven thrower craghammer +1 (Whurthal) wielded by the human blood rager, potion of healing, 40 gp. There are also several pages of notes detailing caravans attacked, manifests and captured prisoners, and additional ambush plans for the road running from Assembly to Lonecross, all written in a neat and precise Common. There is also another note, written in Primordial:

“Continue with your attacks, but keep the complex protected and hidden. Use only the gnolls for ambushes, they are expendable. Send the prisoners and materiel through the portal, anything else is yours to keep. Do not fail me.”

It is signed with an illegible symbol.

While you created an elaborate scene in the master bedroom and summoning room, there was a small matter of the entrance hall you neglected to take care of…

Current: 845 XP.

Auspicious Beginnings, Part 1

29th day of Jinar, 133rd Year of Assembly
(1067th Year of Nerath)
11th Hour
Strongbad Ruins, Outside Assembly

The bright, mid-morning sun heralds the return of the heat. Last evening you tracked as far into the night your eyes could manage, but the gnoll managed to elude your pursuit. You easily pick up his trail today, leading you to a hilly area a day’s ride out from Assembly.

Without a recent and clear trail to follow, there is no way you would have come across the entrance to the forgotten ruin, hidden deep within the hills. The narrow and partially collapsed tunnel leads deeper underground. A short walk down and light emerges from an ancient complex up ahead, the double doors slightly ajar. Hyena-like voices, along with hyena-like barking, emanate from beyond…

* * * * *

DM’s Notes: Session 1, June 28, 2010.

You defeated a firebrute (Level 2 Solo Brute), which crashed the gnoll ambush. That sent a gnoll hunter running back to base of operations. The firebrute seemed half-crazed, screaming and yelling in Primordial about the “pathfinder” and “path destined” and other barely intelligible nonsense. (125 XP each.)

Daxis, a lieutenant of an Assembly patrol, asked you to follow the fleeing gnoll and find their base, retrieve any prisoners (minor quest), and find out who is organizing the gnolls in their recent raids on caravans (minor quest). He asked you to report back to him in Assembly.

The entrance hall to the complex contained 2 hyena, 4 gnoll cutters, and a gnoll hunter, the same one that ran away from you yesterday. You were able to stop the gnolls from getting off an alarm or triggering the pit trap. You found 9 SP. (100 XP each.)

In the central hallway, a illusionary tapestry stands between two statues. The tapestry displays a subtly moving image of an ocean or other body of water. You discovered the statues pivot and can settle in one of eight directions, but something is missing to activate the tapestry.

You moved to the crypt and discovered that after entering, the crypt automatically locked itself from the inside, zombies emerging from the sarcophagus. 4 pack zombies and 2 tainted zombies attacked, and a skullborn zombie and a deathlock wight (Level 4 Controller) entered from another room. Before defeating all the undead however, the wight pushed you into the pool in the room which awakened a blue slime (Level 3 Solo Brute). After combat, you found 12 GP (2 GP from each sarcophagus), 46 GP in various coin and 2 amethyst (100 GP each) at the bottom of the pool, and a ritual scroll of comprehend language in the room that contains a badly damaged teleportation circle. (275 XP each.)

Current XP: 500.

Auspicious Beginnings

28th day of Jinar, 133rd Year of Assembly
(1067th Year of Nerath)
19th Hour

Even the early evening has not brought relief from the beating sun and the wind has been no help either. It is only a month into summer and already the heat has people yearning for the chill of winter. Sages and hedge wizards all predict even hotter temperatures and the doomsayers have taken up calling for the end of the world by fire.

Perhaps it is the heat stirring on activity, but for whatever reason, the bandits and monsters are particularly aggressive this year. Reports of gnoll attacks and orc raids filter through every village and even the more vigilant cities are watching the roads (and skies) more closely. Merchants and caravans, normally downright miserly with their gold, have spread it around freely to hire guards and adventurers to protect their goods. Many have not been seen again.

Your trip, however, has been extremely uneventful, the entertainment consisting of feeling sweat bead on your forehead and dripping into eyes or mouth. And now, just half a day’s ride outside of Assembly’s city gates, your prospects for action are quickly dwindling away.

As you adjust your weapon belt and armor straps for the thousandths time on this trip, you notice a cloud of dust in the distance. Riders, and by the banner they fly, soldiers from Assembly on patrol. The small copse of trees ahead marks the unofficial boundary of where the wilds end and the relative “safety” of Assembly’s territory begins.

You can be forgiven then for not noticing the ambush until a feathered shaft embeds itself into the wagon you were hired to protect. As the merchant—screaming expletives—dives for cover, you see five figures step their fur-covered hides reluctantly from the cover of the trees ahead. Gnolls, and they do not look too happy about the weather either, though all you hear is the yipping sound of their hyena-like laughter.

Weapons and implements fly from their sheaths as you move ahead of the wagon. The gnoll archer draws another arrow as the four others advance…


22nd of Jinar, 133rd Year of Assembly
(1067th Year of Nerath)
21st Hour

The last of you to arrive at the White Shark Inn in Lonecross is the first one buying a round of drinks. Even though the sun has not set, the common room is already filled with people looking to wash down the dirt from a dusty road or hard day’s labor.

You are departing tomorrow morning to Assembly, but tonight you can enjoy the company of fellow travelers and raise a glass that the Raven Queen has not claimed your soul today.

* * * * *

DM’s Notes:

Please use the comment section to make some introductions and whatnot here. The next post is the beginning of the first adventure.

Obsidian Portal does not easily allow 3 figure dates, so all the Adventure Log posts will be in the Nerathan Calendar years, instead of Year of Assembly reckoning. Top of the posts will list the in-game date (matched to the posting date).

Lonecross is just over 3 days ride (approximately 130 miles) from Assembly to the west. You will be traveling while guarding a wagon for the trip, moving at around 25 miles per day.

Overlook is approximately 10 days ride (400 miles) east of Lonecross by the road, and Ravenscar another 12 days ride (480 miles) beyond that. Steelhaven is around to 15 days (just under 600 miles) southeast of Lonecross, by road.


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