Night in the City of Towers

Jax'd: Back in ax'tion!
Long time, no kill.

After what seemed like a VERY long walk, we hit the boundary of monster country, at the town/district/cave of Six Kings. A party of rather polite goblins (or hobgoblins…that all look the same to me), complimented us weaklings on our previous win over their rivals (apparently our bouts are all on pay-per-view), but was unwilling to let us past the border. Their tats declared them to be of the bladebearer faction, which meant we didn’t have much incentive to be friendly.

Despite knowing that this place was ambushalicious, we charged into battle, discovering very quickly that the goblin gang was larger than it appeared in the mirror, and that they were serious.

Serious, but not lucky. Our smaller group performed fairly awesomely, and the goblins…not so much. The Chib’s scimitars rarely connected with any of us, and the underlings were pretty standard fighters. Anwen managed to carve out a significant hole in the leader’s chest, which earned her the attention of the goblins’ archers. (Ouch.) Crake, however, informed Anwen that she did not have permission to die and sent some healing spells her way. In the meantime, Miro and Tzupok wailed on the goblins, who got to exercise their “Chib succession plan” far more rapidly than they were probably expecting to. Tzupok did a “souper” job at killing, I must say.

Fye was probably doing something useful too, but it’s hard to tell with him. You know, with the sneaky, and the disappearing, and the backflips! Oy vey. Anyway, soon enough everyone who wasn’t us was dead.

As we were scouting about for a place to camp for the night, we ran into yet another group of Goblinites, who were convinced we had a bit of the Ashen Crown with us. The very idea! Anyhoodle, we argued for a bit as to whether our party, or the goblin party, or both, would get to head into the cave and defeat the nastiness that lay beyond. Miro held some sort of dance-off with the goblin magic user, and won because he was – frankly – a lot more impressive. After a bit of back and forth, I’m pretty sure we agreed to join forces. The goblins will, however, probably double-cross us and try to find Asherta’s blade at the first opportunity. So we should be careful.

Ridin' through the Desert on a Horse with no Existence
"Is that an _emerald_ claw you're wearing?"

There’s nothing like the threat of police action to get adventurers moving…out. Our party made a brief pit stop at the university library to study up on the Emerald Claw – an organization, not an artifact – and then flew the airship to the last podunk farmville south of monster territory. We bickered for a while about whether it was a better idea to continue to use the airship (Safe! Fast! Smooth!) or to troop in on foot. Oddly, horses cost more than a decent sword, and no one could wrangle a good bargain from the universally cranky inhabitants.

So we walked. Fye took scout, walking along the upper ridge by the path, and soon sighted a lone goblin gettin’ himself hog-tied and railroaded by three bowmen. After reporting back to the party, Fye and Anwen took the high road, while Tzupok, Miro, and Crake took the low road. The goblin hunters were fairly jumpy, and it only took a moment for them to get all itchy trigger-fingered, raining fire arrows down at the group (Hey, we just walked down the road, people!). Offended by their behavior, Anwen started shooting back. Hell broke loose right about then. Fye sliced one dude’s entrails out, and Miro charged down the road after a horse to free the roped goblin. Tzupok windmilled the rest of the enemies, while Crake threw electric fury at them, sometimes while standing in water (where’d you go to school again, Crake?).

The party managed to eliminate some of the attackers, although a few got away. None were left alive to question (sad face), and the goblin, while grateful, gave only a shifty explanation for what was going on. We parted company with the goblin and continued north, where more danger surely awaits, some of it probably in the form of the Emerald Claw survivors who would now be on the alert. Only total fools would head directly into such a trap!

Did someone say fools? Say hello to the Jax’d Squad!

Sorry, no montage.
in which our heros mkae zombies explode.

After a rousing discussion of energy policy and healthcare reform over a few mugs of Jax’d, our heroes decided to get to hero-ing and met up with Prof. Nephret and her rather shady elven companions, who gave us some more history on the Ashen Crown, but didn’t really offer much in the way of help. Hence, we politely excused ourselves after turning down an offer to sell the dagger for 2000 gold.

We had intended to merely kill time while waiting for the airship, but an urgent message from Nephret gauranteed that we’d be killing something else. She twigged to the fact that Lady Dannae was not who she claimed to be, and begged us to meet her so she could give us some more info. We hightailed it to her apartment, but alas, it was too late. Dannae was already waiting for us, with a newly zombied Nephret and a few other undead. We smashed them dead dead, without too much trouble. Fye alomst died (again). Tzupok managed to flatten some of them without moving a single step, Anwen shot a few in the face, and Miro pulled down some “Temple of Light” action that had a serious slimming effect on the undead. Turns out, they HATE holy light. Crake was strangly quiet and distant through the encounter, but still hurled some healing light when needed.

Post-fight, Anwen retrieved the notes about the crown that Nephret died to pass on (sorry about that, sweetie). Also mentioned, “the Emerald Claw”, which Dannae “the Demise” Ulann might also have been interested in.

The scene closes with our heroes stage center, mopping up zombie dust and pondering their next move.

Kruthik fear us. Professors love us, or You can never have enough undead gem eyes.

Never forget the rule of “go left!”, unless of course you should have gone right.

Our band of adventurers again returned to the Kruthic tunnels to finish what they started. In our last trip there we killed the hive queen, but left part of the tunnels unexplored. After speaking with the understudy of a professor that was supposed to know something about the gobiln lore in the area (and who always seemed to be on the verge or returning any time now) we decided that the chance at more loot, and figuring out if [insert name of undead bad guy] was really down the tunnels made it a worth while trip.

We made our way into the tunnels, making sure to lock ourselves in for fear of an easy escape. Little kruthic pitter-pattered around but none came close to us. When forced with deciding which way to turn, Miroslav Brezlin convinced the group that left was clearly the correct way to go. It wasn’t. Eventually we took the original advice of Crake Galt and went back to the waterfall and made our way back to the room with the first big undead encounter. We passed through some double iron doors and fought in a room with a giant bowl of flowing blood in the middle. There were a couple undead creatures that burst forth from their resting places and proceeded to get an ass whoopin! There was this one pesky mist creature (mist creatures = bad, noted.) that gave us a run for our money but eventually succumbed to the might of our heroes.

No tricks or traps waited for us after that fight, just [insert name of undead bad guy]. By now I think the party has learned that if it has gems for eyes, it’s not gonna be good. With this knowledge in hand we proceeded to enter a room with 4 statues in the middle of the room, 1 in each of the corners and a tomb at the end of it. We preemptively picked out the eyes of one of the statues, which of course started the whole group bearing down on us. Miro made use of his powers against the undead. Crake healed when he could and threw super weak magic daggers when he couldn’t. Tzupok acted as a non-human shield while at the same time acted as a non-human killing machine. Anwen Pennent plunked away with her shoulder cannon, raining a shower of really expensive lead down upon our enemies. Last but not least Fye showed us that our damage classes were all kinda dumb compared to his, also…he’s not dead anymore.

The creatures felt the wrath of five, level two characters and regretted ever messing with such a badass group. Well, probably not…I think they just died. Again. Whats next for our band of brave souls? Will some of Anwen’s sketches lead us to a new adventure? Will Fye ever find his missing finger? Will Crake ever find soft hands to hold him when it storms out? Tune in next time to find out!

"The Queen is Dead, Long Live the Queen!" Or, "Oh, That Guy Fye Died, How Predictable."

The heroes cautiously entered the hive cave, wary of a surprise attack and being surrounded. Piles of eggs and rubble lay strewn across the cavern floor separated by sheets of mucus delicately hanging from the ceiling. Scurrying across it all were hundreds of baby Kruthik. As the group inched forward into the chamber a deep rumbling shook the foundations of the cave sending rubble scattering and filling the air with dust. The tremors increased in force until the ugliest, gut infested, monstrous Kruthik burst forth from the ground. The party, feeling the effects of shock and awe, watched as the hundreds of baby Kruthik congealed into two large swarms that rushed forward, bolstered by the large Kruthik’s presence. They proceeded to fuck shit up. Tzupaq went down, followed by Crake. Crake saved himself with a natural 20 and got back up to revive Tzupaq only to watch the baby Kruthik devour Fye beyond recognition.

The sobering effect of Fye’s death focused the party on their task of staying alive (or so he would have liked to think, had he been alive) and they redoubled their attacks. Detecting a filial relationship between the babies and the lumbering Kruthik the party brought their arms to bear on what could only be the hive mother and smote her into tomorrow which sent the babies scurrying for the nearest crack or crevice.

After they finished their mission to remove the Kruthik threat and destroy the hive and its contents the party gathered around what was left of Fye. Sensing a lingering presence about the corpse the party decided it would be best to recover a part of the body to attempt a resurrection. The party then headed back up to the surface to relay their findings back to Brugar and Vilora. There was some dialogue. Something about another professor and going back to the cave.

That is all.

This is a bug hunt, man!; or, getting dirty in the Kruthik tunnels

Almost as if knowing that time was short, our team chose to ignore the doors in the zombie chamber and instead dive down the drainpipe to where the Kruthik might be gathering. With much squeezing and scraping, the group single-filed its way to a larger cave below the tomb. The walls were covered in grody slime, which was a clue that we were on the right track. The other clue was the swarm of Kruthik buggers waiting to attack us. Tzupok headed up the line, forming a warforged wall between the party and the enemy. Fye immediately tossed such pesky “tactics” to the wind as he bounced and flourished his way toward the buggers. Miro asked his God to put the smack down, a prayer that occasionally got answered. Anwen plugged away at the surprisingly tough beasts, while Crake muttered stuff about Objectivism and then got shishkebobed by the Kruthik. Things were looking pretty bad until we got the leaders down; cleaning up the hatchlings then went a bit easier. The party took a breather, and although we were far from the prime of health, we took a peek at what lay beyond…which looked at a lot like the egg nursery of the bug monsters.

So that leaves just one question. Who wants omelets?

Suit Up! A ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ by Barney “Crake Galt” Stinson!

Turn to Page 6 to ‘Release’ ‘Hell’ ‘Fire’ ‘Today’…

You walk into a room were only in the footsteps of God will you proceed. Wait. Wrong adventure. You unlock the door to the tomb and enter a room containing some statues, a locked door, and several plates on the ground emblazoned with seemingly random words. The obvious choice is to step on a few of the plates and see what happens. When the more tame options like ‘Open,’ ‘Door’ and ‘East’ don’t produce any results (of course), you step on ‘Fire’ and immediately are attacked by several molten creatures. Crake makes good use of Thundering Armor to hide behind Anwen; Miroslav and Tupoc discover that lava bathes aren’t comfortable; and Fie did something, I’m sure. Of course the first thing your new friends do is step on the ‘Hell’ plate and unleash a TOWERING INFERNO OF miniature doom in the form of a wee little dragonthingie. He hurts. And can go invisible. You prevent your foes from spawning any more allies by standing on the ‘Fire’ plate. Many burns later, you emerge victorious!

Turn to Page 9 to debate for several hours whether to rest in the tomb or go out and rest.

Turn to Page 11728 to choose to end the debate by resting in the tomb and be sneak attacked by some Kruthik.

Fie and Crake hide in a corner and try to avoid combat while Miro, Tupac, and Anwen attempt to prevent the Kruthik from alerting reinforcements to your presence. Miro performs an amazing avenger act by lunging at and grabbing a Kruthik just as it is about to scurry into its tunnel only to lose grip of it. You decide to choose option B and exit the tomb before tangling with more Kruthik while weakened.

Turn to page 11729 to head out of the tomb with some Kruthik corpses for Brugar then rest and resupply.

Turn to page 25 to reenter the tomb.

Continuing further into the tomb, past the puddles of lava goo and Kruthik bits in the first room, you enter another room were only in the footsteps of God will you proceed. Choosing to ignore the obvious trap, you continue up the steps on the other side of the room and attempt to open the door, only to SURPRISE, trigger the trap. Inspector Gadget-like, the stairs turn into a slide that sends you back towards the inscribed plates in the middle of the room where the Kruthik have decided to reappear. Some tiles surrounding the plates turn into targets for ceiling spikes and others swing away to send victims into a magically meat grinder. While dancing around the plates trying to avoid traps and Kruthik; Fie, Crake, and Anwen disable plate mechanisms while Tupoc and Miro provide cover. With the traps disable and the Kruthik squished, you carry on.

Turn to page 28 for the zombiepocolypes.

Finally you enter a room were NOT only in the footsteps of God will you proceed. But there are two zombies and one huge zombie hanging out in a waterfall surrounded by what appears to be force-field emanating statues. Miro pulls a Scorpion and a can of holy whoop ass on the huge zombie and obliterates him. The next few minutes are spent with Tupoc as a meat shield while the rest of you try to figure out how the hell to hit the zombies. Just as all hope seems to be lost, Anwen’s emo rage causes her to shoot the statues in an attempt to disable whatever force-field they create. But the statues are too tough. In desperation, she plucks out the bejeweled eyes of the statue and low and behold something happens! Nearly dead, you crush the last zombie.

Turn to page 67 to see what you won!

Bloodied and exhausted, you have made your way halfway through the tomb. Who is Assurta? Can you trust Vilora or Anwen? Was it a good idea to let Tupac have garnuts? Was that how I met your mother?

Tune in next week for answers to these questions and more!

Big Trouble in the Cogs

After accepting Professor Vilora’s request to deal with a Kruthik infestation down in the Cogs the party split up, some stocking up on supplies and others catching a quick nap. Anwen, feeling a slight twinge of homesickness, thought a large flagon of Jax’d would hit the spot and figured that would be the best course of action seeing as how all the taverns serving Jax’d were down in the cogs anyways. Crake ran to wake Miro from his nap and collect Tzupok from whatever it is that warforged do in their free time (all we know is that it looks something akin to staring at a wall) and the group met up at the lift that headed down to the cogs.

The party found a tavern that looked just as good as any other, entered, and ordered up their drinks. While the group discussed their thoughts about Vilora, Crake eavesdropped on the surrounding conversations. Not hearing anything other than plain old blather, Crake strained his ear even harder, cocking his head to the side. This caught the attention of a couple of bugbears who made their way straight over to the table. Crake tried to apologize to the bugbears, but they seamed to have no inclination for forgiveness. Crake and the bugbears talked a bit more (all unbeknown to the rest of the party as Crake was the only one who spoke goblin) and the bugbears grew ever more irritated, gesturing strongly at the door. After several more bugbears started to make their way over to the table everyone in the party got a good idea of what was going on and decided it was time they moved on. Before leaving, though, they made sure to snag a case of Jax’d for the road.

They walked around the cogs, looking to catch their sense of direction and figure out their next move when a high pitched, shrilly voice yelled out, “Give me your shinies!!!”, promtly followed by two goblins who poked out from opposite corners, launching arrows at the party. A tough fight ensued against a half dozen goblins and their leader who wielded a shadowy blade. The many goblins overwhelmed them at first, but the scales tipped as the fight went on and soon the goblin leader, seeing many of his kin felled, surrounded himself in shadows and disappeared. The party quickly caught sight of blood drops falling from thin air and shoved their blades at the invisible goblin filling him with an inner lattice of steel. Tired and blooded, the party decided it was time to head back up to the university for some shut eye.

After a good night’s rest the party headed back down to the Cogs and sought out foreman Brugar. They meet Brugar and a dwarf in the foundry’s canteen and were directed to the tunnel containing the infestation. Cracking open some sun rods they proceeded down the tunnel alone until they came to a large chamber containing a pyramid of skulls bound by iron framework in the center of the room and in the middle of the far wall a ramp leading up to a large set of doors. In the corners of the room and up towards the ceilings were small holes leading into tunnels. Leading up to the holed were drag marks painted in blood. The party first examined the holes to see if they could plug them up, but the task seemed too tedious to be deemed worth while. They then moved on to the door, examining it for clues, when screeches burst forth from the tunnels followed by a dozen large insects racing towards the fresh meat.

The group ran back towards the tunnel from which they came to regroup and turned to face the Kruthik menace. The main force of the insects swarmed Tzupak, who took the brunt of the damage, while Miro fended off a second group of them. Anwen and Crake stayed to the middle, Anwen plugging shots into the monsters while Crake kept the group alive. Fye bounced between the two groups, threatening the flanks of the bugs. Miro, after having finishing off his pack of insects, headed over to the Tzupak and the mass of insects surrounding him and started chanting a prayer to his gods. Fire and brimstone(?) rained down on the Kruthik and due to some extremely effective praying caused several of the bugs to burn to a crisp. The rest of the Kruthik saw that a fresh meal was not to be had that day and scurried off back into the tunnels.

Everyone wiped off the dust from their armor and checked to make sure all were OK. They then headed over to skull pile to take a closer look and see if it had any relation to the Kruthik. They found a deteriorating leather satchel containing a damaged journal along with a few gold coins from the Dargunn era and among the skulls they found a key. They all looked to the door and scurried over to see if this key might reveal what lay hidden beyond.

Session XP Gained: 1561

Treasure Summary

Encounter Treasure
A Meeting with Professor Vilora luckblade
Dust Up in the Goblin Pub none
Tomb Entry damaged journal, 11 gp in Darguun mintage, potion of healing, and battle standard of might

Remaining Resources

Name Hit Points Surges Action Points Daily Powers
Miroslav Brezlin ?? / ?? ?? / ?? ?? ??
Crake Galt 29 / 31 2 / 8 0 None
Anwen Pennent ?? / ?? ? / 6 ? ??
Tzupok ?? / ?? ? / 13 ? ??
Fye 27 / 27 4 / 6 0 1
Ghost in the Machine; or, Remember that time you let my brother die?
I can't leave you alone for five minutes, can I?

So, the party charged into a shuddering tower, discovered a host of Red Jackel gang-sign-flipping fools, eventually hacked them to pieces (not without considerable fainting and pain on their own account), ran upstairs to find an infernal machine AND the object of their search, Anwen’s own brother, who nevertheless died because the party collectively nerfed.

Did I miss anything?

Addendum: After spending several hours resting and recuperating (or in Miroslav’s case, staring at his hands for hours, crying at having been granted an epiphany from his god after spending his last several fights in ignorance of his god’s vengeful power), too tired to even drag themselves out of the stench and refuse of the jackel’s hideout, our heroes stepped through the door, faced by a crowd of onlookers. Before managing to retrieve any more than few scraps of information from the crowd a courier dressed in aristocratic robes presented a letter to the party. The letter requested an immediate audience with a professor/scientist in the Upper Wards of Sharn and included a skycoach ticket for all involved. Knowing the cost of such tickets and the speed with which the letter reached them, the party set out for the nearest port and hired the first available skycoach.

Half way to the Upper Wards the skycoach was surrounded by six goblins riding elemental platforms and wielding bows. Anwen immediately took aim at the nearest goblin, letting loose a glancing shot into its chest. Fye followed up with a shuriken to the next goblin while Crake hastily searched the deck for something to hurl. Tzupok, seeing Crake’s futile search for something to throw and having no ranged weapons himself, decided what better weapon to hurl than himself and promptly let out a mighty, mechanical roar and vaulted over the railing onto an unsuspecting goblin’s platform. The platform dipped and swayed, barely supporting its new found load. Tzupok figured the best way to alleviate the strain was to shove the goblin off. After a couple more exchanges of arrows, bullets and plated fists a new presence appeared in the fray in a long flowing black cloak and shrouding hood. A large orb held out in front of the body was the main focus of everyone’s gaze and they watched it spring to life, glowing brighter by the second until sharp forks of dazzling blue energy spread from one goblin to the next. The party heaved a collective sigh of relief, though it was cut short as the goblins quickly recovered from the shock and redoubled their attacks. The mysterious person was not here to aid the party.

Their attention newly focused, the party swung around and sent all sorts of fury at the shrouded figure. Tzupok managed to grab onto the orb carrier’s robe, and though it ended up breaking free, the distraction turned the fight in the party’s favor. Miroslav buffed the crap out of Tzupok and between his mighty fists, Anwen’s depleted gold (er, gold depleting) bullets and a single well placed shuriken from Fye they successfully dismounted their foe sending the rest of the goblins packing. The party was later able to determine that the cloaked figure was possibly the same person who had written the schematics found on the body of Anwen’s dead brother.

The rest of the ride to the Upper Wards was uneventful except for Tzupok’s grief as his new elemental platform faded from existence. We leave our party at a skycoach port in the Upper Wards.

Treasure Summary

Encounter Treasure
Red Jackals 60 gp in a pouch on the dead archer
Doomsday Machine Eberron shard of lightning, belt of the brawler
Fight in the Skies None?
Gorilliashark in the mist. Or was Booth really a halfling?
Arrival in Eberron.

Message for you Sir!

We found a letter which pointed us to Eberron, more specifically to a person, Brugur Gyrrend of Sharn. After setting our feet on dry land after a month at sea (with only a few barrels of Jax’d to keep us company) we were ready to find some grub and a place to grab a drink. Suddenly mist began to flood out of a doorway we were approaching and a huge gorilla with shark teeth (don’t ask…it exists ok!) started to attack us. Crake Galt decided staying in one place was the way to go, Miroslav Brezlin thought getting ktfo a couple times would somehow help, and mainly Tzupok did all the damage. Fye made a flyby attack on the monster then slipped into another room to check things out. In that room were some mist/bubble/jaws things which Fye took his sweet time getting rid of.

After the mist gorilla monster was downed and we mopped up the rest of the bubble things, we started to track some misty footprints that the monster had left. Along the way we ran into some people who pointed us in the direction of a specific tower from which the monster had emerged. As we were traveling there we heard shouts from an alley and charged in on some kids who were roughing up an old man. The kids were halflings, and after we charged in trying to scare them off (which is determined by how pretty you are), we kinda started to get our collective asses kicked by a mysterious halfling agent and his two henchman. Miroslav went down again (/cough wet noodle /cough) and all hope seemed lost until Tzupok once again saved the day by painting the walls of the alley with a fresh coat of ‘Halfling brain’ red. After rescuing Abe Lincoln, aka Tol, we were about to take the one still live halfling to the coppers when the tower in question started to shake and rumble ala Haiti. Tol then switched his priorities for us to save people in the tower, so we tied up the Halfling thief and rushed off to the tower. We ended there with a short rest, ready to enter the tower and continue our adventure.

Session XP Gained: 510

Treasure Summary

Encounter Treasure
A Meeting with Lagot small coin purse containing 40 gp, letter from Lagot to Brugur
Fresh Off the Boat reward for saving bystanders, including one garnet gem (100 gp value) and 200 sp
Misty Footprints No treasure found
Cornered 1 vial of Alchemist’s Spark (Eberron Player’s Guide), coin pouch with 30 gp, eight copper rings (valued at 1 sp each)

Remaining Resources

Name Hit Points Surges Action Points Daily Powers
Miroslav Brezlin 24 / ?? 3 / ?? 1 None
Crake Galt 6 / 26 3 / 8 1 Obedient Servant
Anwen Pennent 17 / 22 3 / 6 1 None
Tzupok 28 / 33 10 / 13 1 None
Fye 21 / 22 4 / 6 1 None

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