A Whole New World

New Allies and Old Foes

As revelations about their new home sank in, the members of the Explorer’s League took some time to recoup in the flourishing town of New Ryn. Filled with a sense of curiosity and the need to acquire more allies the Explorer’s League settled on the new goal of tracking down the tiger people to the south-east. Before they could set off they would be joined by several new members including the Kaldian ambassador, Noginabit, and a far travelling Madello guide, Dophiir.

Allucalin took charge in the down time and requested the assistance of the Explorer’s League to hunt down some magical components, whether he did this to bring the group closer or purely for selfish reasons only he will know. Luckily for Alucalin, Dophiir is no stranger to collecting stuff for stuff allowing the two wizards to learn some spells from each other.

With new allies and new spells, the group set off once again to unveil the unknown. Quickly they made their way to the edge of what they had explored and mapped to the south-east and then pushed forward discovering hilly yet still forested terrain that they took as a good sign of finding the mountainous home of the elusive tiger people. As they searched and mapped this new area they discovered yet another of the vine rope trees, which Alucalin saw as a good opportunity to collect seeds for future developments of New Ryn.

The travels were quiet, other than a seemingly one-sided debate about trees, their origins and scientific value that Alucalin and Noginabt conversed about. But conversations were cut short as an old foe was poised to strike from within the trees. The fabled Tree Schlongs, named by the eccentric Duke Kingsley, descended upon the party without warning. Despite stories of their ferocity, the group had little trouble dispatching the snake-like creatures.

The group pressed on clinging to the small burst of adrenaline as Dophiir stumbled into a nest of predatory birds, another old foe which had previously been avoided. As they swarmed down on Dophiir the rest of the group came to his aid in a flurry of blades and fire. With the darkness encroaching and the smell of charred fowl on the air, dinner and sleep seemed like a good option, but the discovery of a marked grave stalled those plans.

Alucalin wanted to dig up the grave to ascertain what was buried there and an approximate date of burial. Noginabt strongly disagreed with digging up the grave as well as being confused about the strange custom of digging holes to put dead things in. After a brief discussion about the nature of death and its rituals between the different races, Dophiir started digging up the grave. After digging down far enough to reach more fertile earth a ghostly figure emerged from the tree above the grave.

Attempts to converse with the spirit went unanswered, but it didn’t seem openly hostile, that is until it possessed Alucalin. Wiedenbaum and Noginabit attempted to render Alucalin unconscious but were unable to strike down the strangely nimble wizard. The spirit used the wizard to attempt to communicate to the party asking “Understand?” As the group began to reply, they found out that the spirit was offended by its disturbed grave. The spirit reached out to one individual, Noginabit, to impart a quest to seek out a relic from a cave as recompense for the slight. The spirit left the group with a final warning “I will know if you do not do as you have promised.” then left Alucalin’s body.

With his body back in control, Alucalin threw a destructive fireball at the ghost and the tree it had sprung from. Noginabit, seeing the impulsive destruction of a beautiful tree, lashed out at the wizard with a fiery blade. Tension mounted as lines were drawn, the Kaldia on one side Angvald and Alucalin on the other, with Natalia and Dophiir trying to stay neutral. A few swings of weapons and another massive fireball left Noginabit unconscious and Alucalin heavily wounded. Wiedenbaum tended to Noginabit’s wounds while Dophiir attempted to calm Alucalin down. Camp was made with tensions still running high between certain members.

During the night’s watch, Noginabit left camp feeling that all humans were evil and untrustworthy. Dophiir saw him leaving and caught up with him to share a brief conversation. For the second time that night Dophiir was left with a dire warning as Noginabit shared his thoughts about the humans. In the morning, when they noticed the absence, Alucalin had some members of the party subtly (or maybe not so subtly) question where Wiedenbaum’s loyalties lay. Wiedenbaum decided to stay aligned with the alliance of her people.

They pressed onward into the plains remembering their task to find the tiger people. Wading deeper for many hours into the tall grasses, they noticed another human off in the distance. Angvald waved him over right as the sound of a familiar horn peeled through the air. The Deroshi Warband charge forward as the group prepared to fend off their assault. Unfortunately, the Deroshi hadn’t anticipated Alucalin who let yet another fireball fly which completely annihilated all but the leader of the Deroshi raiding party.

The rest of the party quickly surrounded the leader and cut him to ribbons. In the wake of battle Rarngarr, the newest member, revealed himself as the son of Angvald. The group decided to call it a day after the battle, before resting for the evening Alucalin gave Rarngarr the ability to fly so he could scout out the surrounding area.

During the night, Wiedenbaum spotted a dark shape flying through the sky and pointed it out to Alucalin who was busy dismantling corpses. Alucalin waited for the unknown creature to get within range then brought it down using an Earthbind spell. They woke up the rest of the group and went to investigate the creature. The creature turned out to be one of the Tiger people who, after some comprehend language potions and spells, are called the Talkan. Talks went fairly well with the Talkan as they agreed to come back to New Ryn. The group traveled back without incident and decided to spend some down time doing various activities.

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A World inside of a World?
by Weidenbaum

Once again victory came at the price of retreat as the group left the cave. Alucalin, having survived by hiding with invisibility, and Elias surviving by putting distance between himself and the creatures, carried the unconscious members of the team to the entrance of the cave.

Keeping watch as their fallen team mates recovered, Alucalin happened to notice what appeared to be a sandstorm in the distance. It seemed to pose no immediate threat and was quickly forgotten. Slowly, the party members recovered. Upon waking, Weidenbaum had a new found appreciation for Revan and his divine healing and distrust and disappointment for other members.

Elias realizing the scene of his fallen friends being carried from dangerous places was something he needed a break from, decided to return to the village for a break. Fortune shined on the team as Elias’ departure brought them an old, battle-worn barbarian by the name of Angvald. The old man with the mohawk reminded Weidenbuam of an old, gnarled oak in the woods.

After much talk the team decided they were going to go back into the cave and finish what they had started. With the experience of retreat still fresh in their minds, the team went into the cave with a smart plan and battle formation. The group explored the cave farther than they had traveled before and it was beginning to seem like they had defeated every threat the cave was hiding.

With Weidenbaum and Angvald in the front of the group, they turned a corner in the cave only to hear the familiar shriek and gurgle of their Decemi foe. Taking refuge in the water, sharp blades and magic made easy work of the monsters. The group moved on and came upon a large, ancient wall construction and a pile of rubble. To the horror of the team, above them Decemi lurked and in their blood lust threw themselves into the hole and fell 45 feet to attack the group.

Most of the team was successful in their retreat back to the water as the Decemi horde rained down from above, but Weidenbaum was quickly surrounded. Luck was on Weidenbaum’s side as most of the monsters tentacles missed, and magic was covering from behind. Raven created divine rain to attack the monsters, Avilae sent a well positioned shatter, and Alucalin sent a tidal wave against the horde and was able to free Weidenbaum and cover the retreat to deep in the water.

Having lost one meal, the Decemi redoubled their efforts and over ran Angvald. With the flexibility of a willow, Angvald deftly dodged and avoided the tentacle attacks of the creatures. With the Decemi concentrated on taking down the old man, the rest of the team and the water was able to pick them off until eventually they were all dead. Weidenbaum, having survived what was certain death, started to have a change of opinion of the sly wizard.

With the cave finally empty and cleared of all unholy monstrosities, the team investigated the rubble and the hole the monsters had fallen from. Revan, using some magic, was able to secure a rope for Angvald to quickly climb up. His stamina reminded Weidenbaum of a strong tree, never bending to the constant wind trying to pull it’s roots from the ground. Weidenbaum climbed up next and helped hold the rope as the rest of the team scurried up into the tunnel.

Blood stained the ground in multiple places as some of the team members walked past the death site of old friends, and entered the room that had unleashed the creatures. A pillar of strange design sat in the middle of the room as various coloured jellies had been splattered about. The team idly explored it but Angvald was driven by curiosity to the pillar. Inside of the pillar was a staff Angvald quickly claimed and only after some negotiations with Alucalin, did he allow it to be investigated.

With a deep knowledge of the arcane learned from the ‘’School of Hard knocks" , the wizard was able to find the nature of the staff as a ’Hydra Staff’. Pleased, Angvald then allowed himself to play the role of temporary wizarding assistant and brought Alucalin various samples of the jelly around the room. Finding some value in them, Alucalin gathered some of the jelly for supplies. The team then went to work on removing some of the metal sheets from the pillar to return to New Ryn in hopes of getting new weapons forged. Satisfied with the amount they were able to recover, they left.

On the way, the team stopped by the cursed block in hopes of solving it. As everyone but Revan and Weidenbaum hid, Revan took some chalk and began to draw on the block. His first attempt robbed him of his sense of smell, and his second attempt gave him an unknown boon. His chalk writing was left on the block in a gold script and it was believed to have been solved. Alucalin and Angvald carved into nearby surfaces the warnings of the block only holding curses in different languages in hopes other adventurers won’t try anything foolish.

With nothing left to do, the team retreated and made their way back to New Ryn. Once there, Weidenbaum went to a familiar face and the rest of the team were pleased to see a new construction in the middle of town. During their absence, the town had built a place for their adventurers to rest their heads.

The Princess gathered the adventurers again and was given a debriefing of their latest adventure. Terry pressured the Princess into revealing a secret to the team about where they might have been transported to. The Princess spoke of old stories her wizard mentor used to tell her and of a glass globe that held a world that the stories came from. The princess was under the belief that they had been transported to this world inside of the globe and there was a chance they might be able to go home and bring an army with them to reclaim Old Ryn. Naturally, this thought deeply disturbed Weidenbaum as the idea of being stuck in a globe and from a world of stories was not something the Kaldia refused to believe.

It was at this time Alucalin asked the princess for a favour in the form of a deep pit he at first refused to reveal the reason for, but after some pestering he revealed he intended to make some type of golem army for the Princess. After discussion, the group was given the option of either exploring for the Elephant people who might be able to wield magic, or finding the winged tiger people some of the group encountered earlier.

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Trying to Destroy the Remaining Decimi
by Elias

After an intense battle with a pair of monstrous fish-like humanoids, Elias and Alucalin dragged the unconscious bodies of Revan and Avilae outside of the cavern to rest and recover.

While resting, the party noticed a strange but familiar creature watching them. It was a Kaldia who later introduced itself as Weidenbaum, and decided to accompany the party on their dangerous adventure back into the cave. They also discovered a tree with a pool of fresh water surrounding its base. The tree, know as a Harrow tree, had golden leaves, and the water at its base was so pure, it had restorative healing properties.

Upon returning to the area where the party fought that fierce battle, they gathered their belongings and headed deeper into the cave. While investigating, they discovered a deep trench in the water that was filled with the skulls and skeletons of many different creatures. Elias decided to toss a small skull he had into the pool to join the other bones, and what responded will haunt his nightmares for a long time to come.

Charging from the depths of the trench came a massive tentacled creature with poisonous barbs on its appendages. It lashed out at the party with multiple attacks and quickly burned through their defenses. After knocking out Revan and Avilae, it left the injured Wiedenbaum, and charged after Alucalin, who barely managed to slow the creature. After Alucalin, the creature set its sights on Elias. Knowing he was the next target, Elias valiantly charged at the creature for a final attack in desperation, but failed to strike the creature. Realizing the terrible situation he was in, Elias tried to hide behind a rocky outcropping, but to no avail as the creature lashed out at him and knocked him unconscious as well.

Just as the situation looked its most dire, Revan, refusing to be defeated, awoke from his unconscious stupor and healed both Avilae and Alucalin and returned them to the fight. With four of the five party members back to fighting, the party managed to defeat the creature with Alucalin dealing the finishing blow.

Ont their way out of the cave, Weidenbaum, who was carrying Elias, was charged by a creature known as a Decemi. Luckily for the party, the creature charged into the water which is like acid to them. With the advantage of the water, the Decemi was quickly dispatched.

Again, the party left the cave to rest, this time taking advantage of the healing properties of the pool of water at the base of the Harrow tree.

And again, the party mustered their courage and went back into the cave. They looted what they could from the giant creature they managed to slay, and headed deeper into the dangerous caverns.

The next encounter the party would face was just as dangerous as the monster they fought previously. A small horde of scaled creatures charged at the party, quickly encircling Revan, Avilae and Weidenbaum in melee. Elias fought with his rapier for a short while, then decided to retreat and shoot with a shortbow for most of the encounter, while Alucalin used spells from range. The creatures launched multiple attacks very rapidly, and knocked out most of the party, except for Alucalin who turned invisible and watched.

The gods were not through with Revan though, and once again, gave him the strength to return to consciousness from the brink of death. He healed the party continued to fight. By the skin of their teeth, the party managed to defeat the creatures, and once again, decided that they needed to bandage their wounds and recover from the grueling punishment that this cave has been throwing at them.

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Escaping the Enemy Horde
And More New Friends

While the group tried to flee from the approaching horde, they discovered that the door they had previously unchained and left open was suddenly closed once again. Growing desperate, Alucalin quaffed a potion of Giant Strength, and then using his enhanced strength, bashed mightily at the door.

While Alucalin managed to damage the door and bend the doors so that he could see through it, it wasn’t until Dick ran up alongside him and smashed it as well that the doors were knocked open.

Meanwhile, back in the hallway, Bollo was overrun by the horde, and quickly slain. Greed removed her mechanical ears, placed them on Revan’s head, and took up a defensive stance against the horde.

The rest of the group managed to flee through the bashed open doors, and then re-secure the chains in place. Revan and Dick manned the doors as best they could, but heard the creature bashing at them from the other side. They knew it was only a matter of time until the horde would get through.

The group quickly left the underground area, fleeing through the ladder to above ground. Once there, the group put logs, brush, and other debris over the hole, hoping to prevent the creatures from escaping.

The group traveled through the forest to the southwest in search of the tree people, whom they later learned were called Kaldia. After encountering some danger in the forest, the group eventually stumbled upon a large tree and looked at it very carefully.

The group eventually became brave enough to approach the tree, at which point a large green bird poked its head through the tree greenery, greeting the party. The group and the large green bird, which called its self a kini, spoke at length, as the bird was incredibly knowledgeable about the world.

After telling the kini about the creatures that they had recently encountered behind the chained doors, the kini seemed to be very concerned. Explaining that the creatures behind the doors, which the kini called decimi, were an ancient plague race that spread by slaying other creatures.

The kini explained that it would travel to where the party encountered the decimi and try to destroy them if it could. It then gave them directions to the kaldia people, and set off through the air.

The group traveled a distance to the southwest, eventually encountering the Kaldia people situated around a multi-colored section of the forest with a large pond. It was here that Dick became mesmerized by the pond and decided to stay there for a while.

The group spoke with the kaldia leader, who used a human woman as a translator. The human woman, Avilae, asked to join the group, and the group agreed to take her along. The group also secured some seeds from some of the fruit-bearing trees in the area, and then set off to return to New Ryn, with a kaldia ambassador in tow.

While traveling, the kini tracked down the group and landed gracefully in front of them. The kini explained that it had killed some of the decimi, who did in deed make it out of the underground area, but that it believed that some of the decimi remained in the underground area. It asked for the group to slay the stragglers in the cave.

The group agreed to do so, after the kini agreed to take Dick and the kaldia ambassador back to New Ryn. The kini dropped the group off at a second entrance to the underground cavern, where a river was exiting. The group entered the underground cavern, leaving the sunlight for the darkness.

While inside, the group traveled around, tossing a light-enchanted rock around to extend their viewing range. They eventually crossed over the river to the other side of the cave. While exploring, they stumbled upon a large aquatic humanoid creature, and battle began.

The creature expelled a greenish cloud from its mouth, injuring those that came in contact with it. While the group moved above during battle, a second creature of the same type emerged from the water, also breathing a green cloud on the group.

As the group struggled to defeat the creatures, Revan and Avilae were knocked unconscious. With one of the creatures slain, Elias hid under its corpse and Alucalin turned invisible. While the other creature was looking around for both of them, Elias jumped out from under the corpse and tried to strike it. The creature was prepared for a stealth attack, and struck out at Elias first. With an incredibly accurate strike, Elias slew the creature.

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Child Rescued, Onward to Exploration
I wonder if there's anything dangerous behind these locked doors...

The group finished their battle with the small, furry, magical creatures. At the end of the battle, Dick knocked one of the fox-like creatures out rather than slaying it, restraining it by binding it to his quarterstaff.

The group then traveled farther to the south, where some of the group spotted another small furry creature but it didn’t seem to be hostile. In addition, the group spotted several humanoids hanging around what appeared to be an evergreen tree. The humanoids were of the same type that the group have previously run into when they rescued Gemma.

The group tried to communicate with the humanoids, but the humanoids did not speak the same language as the group. In fact, the humanoids didn’t have mouths. While interacting with the humanoids, several members of the group were receiving pictures in their heads – a sign that the humanoids communicated telepathically.

After some difficulty getting their point across to the humanoids, the group eventually was able to communicate to the humanoids that they were looking for a little girl. At that indication, Yvonne climbed down from where she was hiding in the tree – it seemed the humanoids had been protecting her.

The group then communicated to the humanoids that they needed to take the girl back home, and the humanoids gave the group vague directions to somewhere they’d like to meet the group.

In an effort to entertain the scared child, Bollo changed forms into a giant snake. Yvonne was scared at first, but after realizing that the snake was not going to hurt her, she began to climb around on the snake. Bollo moved about, giving the girl a nice ride, which she enjoyed.

The humanoids didn’t seem much surprised at the wildshaping madello, likely indicating that the humanoids were familiar with druids.

The humanoids then departed to the south west.

While some of the group had been interacting with the humanoids, some of the other members of the group had discovered a hole in the ground that the non-hostile furry creature had disappeared into. After moving some fallen chunks of lumber, the group was able to discover a trap door of some sorts leading down.

Eternity slid her shireen body down the side of the hole, finding herself in an underground cavern of some type. Alucalin tossed down a small object with the light spell on it, and Eternity was able to report back that the cavern continued on to the west.

The group decided to get Yvonne back to New Ryn, and then come back to the hole in the ground and see if they could discover where it led.

As the group prepared to return to New Ryn, they remembered the stone that they had previously encountered, that had some strange writing on it. The group returned to the stone and examined it once again.

Alucalin began to investigate the stone, examining the writing closely. After spending some time looking over the stone, Alucalin noticed that he had lost his sense of smell. He advised everyone to stay away from the stone as it could be dangerous.

While discussing with the rest of the group what to do, Eternity got bored and stepped on the stone. Eternity was struck with an incredibly powerful dehydration effect, killing her outright.

The group was now convinced not to mess with the stone, and after gathering Eternity’s remains in a small container, the group traveled back to New Ryn.

While in New Ryn, the group learned from Princess Mia and Malager that while Malager was trying to get rid of the orb that the group had previously discovered, he was surrounded by winged tiger people, who took the orb from him, but otherwise left him unharmed.

The Princess was ecstatic at the safe return of Yvonne, and thanked the group profusely. Separately, Alucalin inquired about the possibility of one of the children becoming his apprentice.

After getting in a sufficient rest and feeling restored, the group decided to head back to the hole in the ground and explore it. The group traveled back towards the area where they discovered the hole, discovering a small patch of the sweet flowers they had previously encountered on the way.

Once back at the hole, the group descended into the cavern to explore it. While exploring, the group discovered a set of sturdy wooden doors that were chain-lock closed. The group unraveled the chains, spending sufficient time distributing links of the chains among members of the group.

The group continued onward, discovering a hole in the ground. By the hole, the group was able to hear the sound of running water. Some members of the group contemplated going down the hole, but decided to continue on first. Just past the hole was another door chain-lock closed. The group unraveled these chains, once again dividing the chains up among the group, and then continued on.

The group encountered yet another chain-locked door, and once again unraveled the chains. The group opened this door, and spotted a horde of humanoid enemies with tentacles for hands. The group tried to quickly close the doors to prevent the enemies from getting through, but the enemies forced the doors open and began to flood into the hallway.

The group was quickly getting overwhelmed, falling back farther into the hallway. As each group member fell back further, Bollo found herself standing in the front row against the mysterious enemies. The creatures swarmed over Bollo, attacking her and some other members of the group with their tentacles.

Bollo changed forms into the giant snake again, knocking some of the enemies back as her form became very large. The creatures were unperturbed, attacking as a chaotic horde.

As members of the group fled past the hole in the floor, trying not to fall in during their hurry, Bollo was quickly being overrun.

Alucalin made his way back to the hallway, and without a source of light couldn’t clearly see, but felt some impending danger in trying to get away from the approaching horde.

Will any of the group survive?

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Searching for Yvonne
And a lost orb

The group decided to take on the creatures in the hidden room in the rockback den, having previously ventured there but found the enemies too dangerous. The group fought mostly in the hallway, limiting the enemies access to them. Eventually, through the use of Eternity’s shatter spells and Alucalin enchanting Elias’ rapier, the group was able to defeat all three enemies.

After taking a moment to catch their breath, the group discovered that the room contained a lot of mechanical apparatuses. There was a gear cog in each corner of the room a pool near the west wall, two metal spigots that drained into the pool, and a button on the east side of the pool.

The group investigated the cogs and spigots, and determined that the cogs could be turned. The group then tried moving the cogs to various positions, and pushing the button to see what kind of effect it would have.

After trying several permutations, and moving between the lower cogs and upper cogs, the group was able to create two separate concoctions before the cogs locked up and were unable to be moved. Finished with the room, Bollo deconstructed pieces from two of the cogs and broke them down for resources.

The group then exited the rockback den and traveled to New Ryn. Upon arriving in New Ryn, the group was surprised to see that the fledgling settlement was much improved since their last visit, with actual houses built, a fishing dock, and a small boat.

The group reconnected with Princess Mia and caught her up on most of their comings and goings. As most of the members were speaking with Princess Mia, Bollo separated from the party and walked over to where the madello ambassadors were stationed. There, she hid the orb from the ruins in a shallow area of the ground.

As the members of the group informed Princess Mia of the orb and the encounter with the flying tiger person, Princess Mia decided she wanted to speak with Bollo. The group called Bollo over and Princess Mia asked Bollo about the orb. Bollo was very evasive to the princess’ questions, angering Princess Mia and earning Bollo an admonishment from the princess.

Princess Mia asked Bollo where the orb was, and Bollo indicated that she didn’t have it. The rest of the group indicated that Bollo did have it, and so Princess Mia sent her bodyguard, Malager, off around the town, searching for the orb. Malager cast a spell and then walked around town carefully investigating the area.

Malager returned to the princess with the orb in hand, and then whispered to the princess. The princess indicated to the group that Malager had found the orb, and then once again admonished Bollo for bringing something dangerous to the settlement. Bollo returned to the madello ambassadors and asked them to tell the madello mayor that the princess stole something from her, and that the madellos should not trust the humans.

Malager entered the princess’ home to further investigate the orb, at which point Elias tried to follow Malager. The princess indicated that Elias should stay outside of the house, and Elias mentioned that he simply wanted to observe, but the princess once again indicated that Elias should remain outside of the house.

Malager returned outside after a few minutes, whispered to the princess once again, and then exited outside of the settlement. The group inquired what Malager had whispered to the princess and the princess indicated that he said that he was unable to determine what the orb was. The group then recommended that the princess destroy the orb, and she said it was being taken care of.

The princess then asked the group if they would assist her with a problem. The group indicated that they would, and she invited them inside her house. Once inside, the princess told the group that one of the children of the settlement had gone missing, and the princess believes she knew where the child had gone. The group agreed to track the girl in the morning, and try to return her to New Ryn.

In the morning Dick led the group, following the tracks he had previously found, along with Bollo’s assistance. The group then continued to the south, trekking across the open world, at which point Elias noticed an odd-looking humanoid hiding off to the west. Elias tried to chase after him, but to his surprise, the humanoid was even faster than him.

The group continued on, finding themselves in another section of forest. There they discovered two varieties of small, cute animals. One resembled a fox with a fiery tail, and the other looked like a blue and white fox with a long blue tongue. The group approached the small creatures carefully, but the creatures attacked them with spells.

After defeating the enemies and moving forward, the group discovered a large stone that was covered with dirt. Elias wiped off the stone and found some strange symbols. While investigating the stone, the group saw more of the small creatures to the south, and moved forward to attack them.

The group stumbled upon several of the creatures, and found themselves beset by multiple angles. Will the group survive the battle?

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Conquering the Ruins
And a tiger person and mysterious orb of power

The group resumed their adventure still in the underground ruins that the shireen man had led them to. Bollo, who had previously been in her famous puppycat form, ended her long nap, hopped out of Naoli’s pack, and resumed her madello form.

The group continued to explore the ruins, eventually stumbling upon a section of the ruins with a few different ways to go. As the group decided to move to the northwest passage, a few stone humanoids noticed the group and moved to attack. There ended up being a total of six of the stone humanoids, popping out of different locations to engage the group.

The group had some difficulty defeating the enemies, as their stone skin was difficult to penetrate, as well as making them immune to some different types of energy damage that the group’s spellcasters attempted to throw at them. Eventually the group did defeat the stone humanoids, but suffered a few injuries in the process.

The group then decided to travel to the one area that they had not yet explored in the ruins, which turned out to be a winding hallway. As the group continued their progress down the hallway, each member of the group felt a slight sensation, but only a few members of the group recognized the sensation as the temperature dropping.

When the group came to the end of the winding hallway, Elias peeked around the wall quickly, and not seeing anything, stepped forward into the room at the end of the hallway. As soon as he stepped there, Elias felt a dark energy rolling over him, and quickly jumped back. While retreating, Elias saw what appeared to be a large part metal part bone humanoid creature with one normal arm, and one arm that resembled a thick bony whip. The creature roared as Elias fled back down the hallway.

Elias then explained what he saw to the rest of the group, and they came up with a plan. They’d all get as close to the end of the hallway as possible, and then rush into the room as a group in order to use their superior numbers against the enemy.

The group executed their plan fairly well, and were able to team up against the enemy, with a few members of the group at first reluctant to step forward, instead hanging out in the hallway. Eventually the group was able to defeat the creature after suffering several damaging strikes from it, as well as suffering from the negative energy aura that seemed to emanate from the creature.

With the creature defeated, the group scoped out the room that the creature had apparently been protecting. There was a large door at the north end of the room, and upon inspecting it, Elias found the same markings (small leaves etched into the lock plate) that he had previously seen. Eternity began to sing at the door, and the door responded pleasantly.

After some trial and error by members of the group, they decided to have one person sing, wait until he door responded pleasantly, and then have Elias attempt to pick the lock. The plan worked, and the door was unlocked, revealing a small room with a stone dais in the center. The dais was made of spokes, with a central tube that was very narrow. At the bottom of the tube there appeared to be a shiny orb of some type.

The group attempted a few different strategies for retrieving the orb, from using frayed roped to try to hook the orb, to Eternity putting her watery leg into the tube and trying to dislodge the orb, and even a few others. Naoli then decided to attempt to turn the spokes of the dais, and that did the trick. As the spokes were turned, the orb in the center was continually raised upwards, until it was easy to grab.

The group started at the orb for a while, at which point Bollo reached forward and snatched the orb off of the dais. The other members of the group began to protest, some concerned that the orb might be cursed, some concerned that no one member should simply take an item without the group first agreeing. Bollo seemed determined to retain possession of the item, until Naoli coaxed the madello to allow him to hold it, so that Alucalin could cast the identify spell upon it.

Upon doing so, Alucalin determined that the item had a special property about it that prevented it from being identified. Knowing that an unidentified item could be very dangerous or cursed, Alucalin suggested destroying the item. Each person that came into contact with the orb could feel an immense amount of power from it. Bollo ended up tossing the orb in her bag and the group exited the ruins.

When outside of the ruins, and heading back to the shireen village, Bollo spotted an anthropomorphic tiger with large feathery wings hiding behind a tree behind the group. The humanoid tiger climber atop the tree, and then soared through the air and landed on the other side of the group, in darkness.

From there, the humanoid tiger called out it what was likely its native tongue, but the group did not understand it. It then spoke in what a few members of the group recognized was dwarvish. How the dwarvish language exists in new world is a mystery that the group may want to explore (HINT HINT).

Alucalin cast the comprehend languages spell and was then able to understand the humanoid tiger, who explained that the group had just left from a place that was cursed. The humanoid tiger seemed concerned that the group might spread the curse to other areas.

Alucalin did his best to communicate back to the humanoid tiger, using gestures and pointing at things in order to convey his ideas. Eventually the humanoid tiger convinced the group members to approach, one at a time, so that he could smell them.

Each group member was indicated as not smelling cursed until the humanoid tiger smelled Bollo, at which point in time he picked her up and shook her in a somewhat gentle manner (though due to her small size, the shaking didn’t seem too gentle.)

Seemingly growing frustrated with the group, the humanoid tiger dropped to all fours and let out a ferocious growl, causing Elias to flee in fear, though the rest of the group was not affected. Surprised by the group’s ability to resist the fear of his roar, the humanoid tiger ran off, yelling out that the group was cursed.

The group then returned to the shireen village to regroup and relax for a short period of time. While there they met a human who had come from New Ryn to serve as ambassador to the shireen people. She indicated that things were going fairly well in New Ryn, but that the princess would like the group to check in with her there.

The group agreed that they would do so, but wanted to swing by the den of the rockback creatures first, so that they could open the other door that was marked with the small leaves.

The group left the shireen village and made their way to the rockback den. Once inside, they found the den much like they had left it. They traveled to the door and opened it in a similar fashion as they had the other (sing to it, pick the lock.)

Once the door was open, the group found a collection of crates and barrels that looked very old, and some spilled, congealed yellowish liquid splayed over the floor. Using his alchemical skill and tools, Alucalin was able to retrieve some of the liquid and reconstitute it into two potions of Giant Strength.

Elias then mentioned that the group might want to take on the creatures in the hidden room, which they had previously fled from.

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Journeying to the Ancient Ruins

The group spent some time with their Shireen hosts, learning about the shireen people and their ways. Some of the members of the group decided to learn the shireen language, and spent a significant amount of time trying to get some of the shireen to focus long enough to teach them.

Eventually the group decided to continue exploring, true to their league’s promise. A lone shireen seemed interested in the group, following them about. The group eventually learned that her name was Eternity, and she decided to follow the group in their adventures.

While preparing to go, Alucalin, a human from New Ryn, arrived and indicated he was interested in traveling with the group. The group convinced one of the shireen to travel west to New Ryn to serve as an ambassador to the humans.

The group then spoke with what appeared to be an elder among the shireen, or perhaps even their leader. Richard asked the shireen if there were any great healers among the shireen, and the shireen elder said that there were. He indicated that he would provide more information to Richard after the group performed a service for his people.

The elder shireen then introduced another shireen to the group, and told them to follow him and assist him. The group complied, and they left the shireen area, traveling east along the mighty river. Their shireen host lead the way, floating atop the river.

The group noticed several floating balls of light floating around the river, moving lazily in random directions. When asked about the lights, the shireen indicated that they were Eluvians, non-sentient floating gaseous forms that emit light.

The group continued on, and the shireen leading the way explained that he was concerned about the group’s chances of surviving the ruins. Elias agreed, saying that it might be too dangerous. The shireen then said he would test the group, and with a dramatic motion of his hands, summoned forth a large winged creature with a massive tail from the water.

The battle then began, and the creature proved to be incredibly dangerous. During the fighting, Richard and Elias were both knocked unconscious, but eventually the group was able to defeat the monster, at which point it fell into a puddle.

Richard and Elias both stood up at that point, realizing that their injuries were illusory. The shireen man leading the group then indicated that the group did not fight as a team, and instead fought as a group of individuals. He warned them that the ruins would probably be too difficult for them.

The group decided against traveling straight into the ruins, so the shireen man offered to take them to an area where pests congregate, so the group could get some practice working as a team. The group agreed, and the shireen man led them further to the east.

The group then came upon a hole in the ground, and decided to venture down below. Underground the group moved about quietly until they heard the sound of some creatures moving. The group was then attacked by several small humanoids that some members of the group had encountered before.

The group was able to kill the small humanoids without too much difficulty, and then set to exploring the small underground cavern. There was little of interest in the cavern save for a pile of refuse. Elias carefully searched through the refuse, and found a nearly intact skeleton of a small animal about the size of a dog.

The group then exited the cavern, and the shireen man congratulated them on working as a group to defeat the pests. He indicated that he could point them towards the ruins, if they were interested. The group agreed, and he gave them directions.

The group traveled further from the river, and came upon a mechanical circle in the ground, with a winding staircase leading down. Traveling down the staircase, they found themselves in an area that looked similar to the secret room in the rockback den that some of the members of the group had previously been in.

Having been warned that the ancient civilization that created these ruins were found of using traps, Elias procured a long stick from one of the trees outside, and used it to try to detect traps around him. While moving around the ruins, the group made enough noise to alert the attention of two mechanical humanoids that radiated heat.

The group used a clever tactic of backing up into a previous room, allowing only one of the creatures to fight them at a time. While sustaining significant wounds during the battle, the group was eventually able to defeat the enemies. Then they decided to catch their breath before moving on.

While continuing to explore the ruins, the group discovered an odd-shaped room with some kind of altar inside of it. While examining the altar, the group noticed a hand print in the middle of it. Richard touched it first, and vanished. Elias and Alucalin carefully examined the altar further, with Alucalin beginning to ritually cast a spell. Getting bored with waiting, both Naoli and Eternity touched the altar, and also vanished.

Richard, Naoli, and Eternity found themselves in a medium-sized room. Shortly after standing there, a voice in a mechanical language called out, but none could understand what it said. The voice seemed to try a different language, but still none understood. The group then felt as if their mind’s were under assault, and suddenly the voice spoke out in common.

The voice welcomed the new slaves, and then asked, “How many.” Naoli tried to question the voice, asking what the voice meant, but the voice did not answer, it simply restated, “How many?” Not sure of what the voice meant, Naoli said “2?”

The sound of metal falling responded then, and Richard, Naoli, and Eternity found themselves in a fight against two metal men of some type. They carefully maneuvered about the room, and after several rounds, were able to defeat the two creatures. Having succeeded, the altar in the room lit up, and the voice indicated to the survivors to claim their prize.

Not wanting to decide who touched the altar first, each individual reached out at the same time. It turned out that Eternity was slightly faster than the other two, and she absorbed a special power of some sort.

The three members of the group then reappeared in the previous room where Elias and Alucalin were still standing. Alucalin was still in the process of casting his spell when Richard, Naoli, and Eternity were getting bored of sitting around waiting, so Naoli slapped Alucalin on the back of the head lightly and indicated that it was time to move on. Alucalin responded angrily, but the group moved on.

The group entered another room, and found two large defaced statues, and another type of altar in between the statues. After carefully inspecting it, the group was able to determine that the altar was powered by blood, and in turn the statues were powered by the altar. Not sure of what exactly would happen if they fed the altar enough blood, the group decided to continue on.

The group continued moving forward, searching where they could. In his haste of moving about, Elias stepped on some kind of pressure plate before he could get his stick in the right position, and a large spiked branch connected to the ceiling via chains fell from the ceiling. Elias deftly dodged out of the way of the trap.

The group then paused a moment to decide their next plan of action.

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Discoverying the Shireens
And Another Death

The adventure resumed outside of the underground den that was home to the pig-like creatures with rock backs.

While the group was resting up from their previous excursion underground, four individuals showed up; Brock, who caught a ride from the madello city back to New Ryn, Bollo, a madello that was interested in adventuring, a stuttering medicine-trained individual named Drexel, and a huntress that the group didn’t catch a name for.

Drexel spoke with the group briefly, indicating that he was knowledgeable with some healing remedies, and quickly got to work on trying to bring Duke back to consciousness.

The group then noticed that Filbur had somehow wandered off, and the huntress stated that she would find him and escort him back to New Ryn.

The group, now composed of Bollo, Brock, Elias, Naoli, and Natealia decided to reenter the underground complex to try to clear it completely of any dangers.

The group found one of the paths that they hadn’t previously explored, and discovered a long hallway that eventually led into a medium-sized room that featured a small hole in the ground.

The group carefully approached the hole, being ready for any dangers. The sound of many small shapes moving around in the hole caused Natealia to jump atop the hole, trying to seal it with her shield. Brock jumped atop Natealia to assist. Natealia felt numerous small pushes against her shield, but was able to keep the hole shut for a while.

Naoli approached the hole, dumped oil inside, and then lit the oil on fire. Shrieks of pain erupted from the hole, and the creatures began bashing against Natealia’s shield more strongly, and were eventually able to escape through the hole, and filled into the room in a flurry of small fury humanoids.

The group was able to defeat the creatures without too much difficulty, though Brock suffered a few lucky hits from the small critters.

The group then traveled back to areas they had already explored, and which point they discovered one room that they hadn’t fully explored. The room contained a large set of dark wood doors with a metal lock plate.

Elias attempted to unlock the door, but while using his tools to move the tumblers, he could feel the internal mechanics of the door lock working against him. Upon inspecting the door, small leaves were found etched into the metal plate.

Bollo suggested singing to the door, stating that some doors opened when you sung to them (after utilizing a solution that let her communicate with her companions.) The group attempted to sing the door, with a few absolutely atrocious results.

Each time someone sung at the door, the locking mechanism responded with either a terrible sound (for those that sung poorly) or a complementary sound (for those that sung well.) Bollo suggested Elias try picking the lock again while the door resounded with its complementary sound, but Elias didn’t think that would work.

After trying various other strategies, including trying to burn the door, stuffing leaves into the hole, etc., the group became frustrated and left the door for another time.

While continuing to explore the underground complex, Elias caught the faint sound of something mechanical in one of the large rooms. He investigated the room carefully, but was unable to discover anything. Still hearing the sound, he asked the group to enter come into the room and everyone search about.

Eventually Brock discovered a section of the wall that shifted down into the ground, revealing a strangely-carpeted hallway that stretched to the south before turning to the west. With the secret door opened, the mechanical sound was much louder.

The group entered, cautiously, trying to see what was inside. Elias entered enough into the hall that he spotted something that appeared dangerous, which he described as a golem.

The golems, or whatever they were, seemed to hear the group moving through the hall, and turned to attack.

Natealia tried to defend against the creature’s attacks, but due to a lucky strike, the creature dealt enough damage to knock Natealia out. Elias picked Natealia up and carried her out of the hallway and back into the main room, where she was healed.

The rest of the group tried to perform an orderly retreat, but that left Brock exposed, and one of the pursuing creatures was able to knock him out. The rest of the group members exited out of the complex, and after running a way, realized that Brock was no longer with them. The creatures did not seem to pursue the party, and so Elias decided to re-enter the complex to ascertain Brock’s fate.

Sneaking into the large room once again, Elias found Brock, but to his dismay, Brock was dead. Elias carried Brock out of the complex. The group then traveled back to New Ryn to rest and recuperate.

After arriving back in New Ryn, Natealia and Naoli delivered Brock’s body to his brother, Terry. Terry seemed in a state of shock, saying right away “I told him this was going to happen. I told him.” Brock’s body was left with Terry, and the Natealia and Naoli met up with the other members of the group.

The group then decided to spend an extended amount of time back in New Ryn, at which point some members decided to learn the madello language, (and Bollo learned common).

During this time, Richard the monk approached the group and declared his interest to travel with them.

Having completed their extended rest and relaxation, the group decided to strike off in exploration to the northeast.

After traveling for almost a full day, the group discovered a type of fort built up in the trees. The fort turned out to be abandoned, but would serve as a useful outpost or safe place to rest.

The group continued on, eventually running into a large river. While approaching the river, the group realized that the atmosphere was a bit different. While approaching the river, and noticing small glinting pieces of something that resembled dust moving through the water, the group noticed an attractive woman rise out of the water as if she was made of water herself.

The woman appraised the group, and the group tried interacting with her, including speaking with her, and while the woman spoke back, she spoke in an unknown language.

Naoli played his flute to her, and Bollo danced about. The woman in the water then somehow pulled a strange musical instrument from the water, and rested it atop the water. From there she began to play the instrument, which included small bars of water rising and falling to her movement.

Eventually Elias decided to swim out in the water, and while the woman initially moved a bit away from Elias, she eventually stopped and appraised him again. Much as the woman had, five more individuals arose from the water, appearing where nothing before had been.

They spoke amongst themselves, and seemed to be giddy about the visitors to their shores.

Richard also swam out into the river around this time, offering one of the sweet flowers he had previously acquired. The woman he offered it to seemed somewhat intrigued, but also apprehensive. The first woman the group saw seemed very interested in Elias, and began swirling around him, intertwining her watery body with his.

Bollo then used one of his concoctions in order to be able to understand what the individuals were saying, and was able to determine that the watery beings were very curious of the group, and wondered if they should invite them to a party.

Another watery being emerged from the water at this time, and while he didn’t look old, his eyes seemed full of wisdom.

He approached the group, and greeted Bollo in the madello language. The watery being expressed curiosity in the humans of the group, and after realizing that a few of them spoke the madello language, he asked Bollo if the madellos had created the humans.

After speaking with the group for a short period of time, the wise watery being invited the group to take a trip with him, and the group agreed. The wise watery being summoned a translucent chariot from the waters, and bed the group to climb aboard.

All did except Elias, who was being transported through the water by the female watery being that seemed enamored with him.

The group traveled up the river, where they decided to spend some time with the watery beings, which they discovered were called “Shireens.”

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New Friends

The group, having successfully arrived at the madello’s home city, enjoyed several days of well-earned rest. Ronen spent some of the time with the group, but also reacquainted himself with the city. Nearly a week after their arrival, the group was scheduled to meet with the city’s mayor.

Revan Wintersbane decided to stay in the madello city to learn more about it. As luck would have it, another survivor of the Old World, and fellow explorer’s league member had made his way to the madello city by sheer luck. Thus, the young man Naoli was introduced to the group and decided to follow them on their journeys.

While awaiting the audience with the mayor, Elias made arrangements with Ronen to procure a short sword and some additional arrows. Ronen was able to provide both by taking a signet ring from Elias, which was described as collateral.

The time has finally come, and the meeting with the mayor was underway. Ronen lead the group to the entrance of the mushroom city, at which point Ronen said his fair well’s, and departed the group.

The mayor, using a similar concoction as Ronen previously had to facilitate communication, informed the group that he was happy to see them. He apologized for Ronen’s eccentric ways. Duke requested an alliance between the madello people and the people of New Ryn – the mayor seemed open to the idea, indicating that friends are always a good thing.

After some additional brief conversation, the madello mayor told the group that he had some assistance for them. He then guided them to an area on the outskirts of the madello city, where a large ship lay on land. Massive balloons were attached to the ship, filling as the group watched. The mayor explained that the ship could get them back to New Ryn in a short amount of time.

The group boarded the ship, and soon met the ship’s captain, who seemed a jolly fellow. The captain accepted some of the communication concoction from the mayor, and soon was talking up a storm. The captain then readied the ship for travel, and the group was soon gliding through the air to the east, towards New Ryn.

While on deck, the group broke into several smaller conversations. Duke eventually requested some time with the captain to speak privately, which the captain agreed to. In the private conversation, Duke asked the captain if he knew of any healers or magical people that could bring someone back to life. The captain was reluctant at first, but after a bit of persuasion, Duke was able to get the captain to talk.

The captain explained that there was a place to the northeast of New Ryn, called the ghost lands by the madello, where spirits roamed. It was said that there existed a being in the ghost lands that had the power to bring back individuals from the other side. The captain impressed upon Duke how dangerous the ghost lands were though, saying that the group would be unlikely to survive the trip.

While speaking with the captain, some of the group spotted a creature soaring through the air alongside the ship. The creature appeared similar to a panther with wings. The creature seemed to look over those on deck, before falling down below sight.

After speaking with the captain, Duke spoke with Natealia, gauging her interest in the possibility to resurrecting Grandpa Vlad. Natealia spoke some words of wisdom that her father had passed down – “In order to be strong, you must first be weak.” With these words, Natealia attempted to get Duke to realize that he needed to let Ebin, his perished son, go.

The captain eventually made his way to a table, which he cleared, and then set some dice upon. Eventually the entire group took part in what the captain called “the eight game.” Using two six-sided dice, if you roll below an eight, you pay, if you roll above an eight, you stay, if you roll an eight, you win. Elias won the first round, taking as spoils a few gold coins and a bit of miscellaneous items, including a bar of soap.

The captain upped the stakes the next round, where Elias was pitted against the captain. The stakes; the captain’s self-described potion of “make you feel better” versus Elias disguise kit. The captain rolled an eight first, taking his winnings with a smile.

The group then retired to the front of the ship, where the captain offered them all a thick, sludge-like substance as a drink. The group partook in the drinks, with Elias notably suffering from an intoxicating affect, while Naoli barely sipped his drink.

The group quickly noticed that the ship moved at a remarkable pace – the entire trip that had taken approximately ten days on foot was completed in around six hours. Having arrived above New Ryn, the captain unfurled long ropes that trailed down to the ground.

Most of the group was able to descend to the ground without trouble, but both Elias and Filbur had difficulties. Elias fell a short way before grabbing onto a rope and descending the rest of the way. Filbur tried to descend, but never really had a firm grasp of the rope, and then fell through the air, trying to grasp at one of the ropes. Natealia positioned herself below Filbur and caught him, with both suffering significant damage from the ordeal.

Before the captain turned the ship around for the return trip, four madellos exited the ship, climbing down the ropes nimbly, and turning their smiling faces up at the group. In addition, Gemma Godstone made her way down the ropes, very slowly and carefully. The ship then blasted through the air, headed back towards the madello city.

The group then met up with Princess Mia, who expressed her joy at their return. The four madellos were introduced as ambassadors for their people. Princess Mia explained that there had been some developments while the group had been gone. She said she’d let Papa Jo explain the first development.

The group then met up with Papa Jo, who said that everyone else looked at him like he was crazy for his story, but he wasn’t going to change it just to make people happy. When pressed for exactly what his story was, he explained that he had seen a women dancing on the surface of the water the previous night. The woman was 100 yards or so off the coast, and seemed to move effortlessly atop the water.

The group thanked Papa Jo for the information, and then Princess Mia explained the second development. Pig-type creatures with stone heads and backs had recently been spotted by a scout. The scout explained that the creatures were dangerous and very aggressive. As such, Princess Mia thought it best for the group to investigate and eliminate the threat. The group agreed to do so, after a good night’s rest.

As the morning came, the group stocked up on supplies, and then made their way to the southeast, as directed by Princess Mia, and after traveling for approximately four hours, discovered a sloped hole leading into the ground, that the group suspected of being the den. The group first attempted to get the attention of the creatures inside by making noise, but none of the creatures came out. Eventually the group decided to descend into the den to investigate it further.

The group used a combination of torches and magic to light their way, and descended into the den. Once actually inside, the group realized that the underground system was larger than they were expecting.

The group made their way to the east, with Natealia leading the way. When Natealia entered a second room, she came under attack from some of the pig creatures, which charged her and tried to bite with their razor-sharp teeth.

The group bottle-necked the opponents, with Natealia serving as the main shield of the group, Elias dishing out damage while dancing back and forth, Duke calling out taunts and using his rapier when the opportunity presented its self, and Naolia and Filbur hanging out in the back, slinging spells.

The group survived the battle, but were significantly injured. They decided to drag the carcasses above ground and butcher them for meat while getting in some rest. Duke provided some encouragement while resting, and the group successfully recovered over a hundred pounds of meat.

The group then descended back into the underground system. The group continued to explore, with the individual members of the group moving about freely and getting a bit far from one another. Naoli stepped through a hallway, and was greeted by a large tree monster in a somewhat humanoid form. The creature lashed out at Naoli, injuring him significantly, at which point he fled back towards the main entrance.

The group reconvened in the main room, and eventually decided to travel north. The north path looped around, taking the group back into the room with the large tree monster. Natealia opened combat with the creature by flinging a fire spell at it, which the creature seemed to be vulnerable to. Natealia then closed to melee with the creature, and continued battle with a combination of melee and spells.

Elias danced into the room, piercing the creature with his rapier, and Duke once again called out taunts from the back. Naoli and Filbur took a mostly defensive position in the hall.

The creature was eventually destroyed, and the group set the creature’s corpse ablaze.
The group then continued on their way, encountering two more of the pig-like creatures. The group was able to defeat the two creatures without too much difficulty.

The group then decided to head back above ground, dragging the additional two corpses, and added more meat to their surplus. The group rested a bit, and made a plan to re-enter the cavern to see what else lied below.

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