Shaintar_J&L_Rangers of Bearheart

Session 14:
On the Necromancer's Heels

The PCs pursued the necromancer northward out of Bearheart. She was able to keep ahead of the group, thanks to her physical abilities, but they were able to follow her trail.

…which unfortunately led directly into the oncoming face of the advancing Prelacy army. They hunkered down and managed to observe the army as it passed. Sharp eyes caught sight of a woman riding alongside a mounted knight of Camon. A sharp ogre nose also caught the faint waft of rotting flesh from her, amid the stink of hundreds of marching soldiers. After a short while, the knight ordered a guard of 6 mounted light cavalry to escort her away from the army. The rangers of Bearheart followed them to a nearby town, which had been abandonded days ago for the protected walls of Bearheart.

A battle ensued. The knights put up a good fight against the rangers. Surrounded, Thorgrin the ogre was finally lightly wounded by the knights, but he managed to defeat them.

On the other end of the battlefield, a Camonese knight bearing a distinct scar over most of his face and neck and filled with rage attacked Tsar-jai the Eldakar sorcerer without mercy, screaming about how “they” needed to be rid from the world. The sorcerer fell and was injured, but is expected to recover.

The necromancer cast a spell and was transformed into a black, smoky whisp and ran from the battlefield and through the wall into a nearby building, escaping yet again.

Next session will continue against the fight enraged knight and the search for the necromancer within the abandoned town.

XP: 2 for everyone

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Session 13:
A necromancer's hasty exit

The game began a couple weeks after the last session. The party was discussing the recent events in Bearheart when a sudden commotion was heard near one of the city’s gates. When they approached, they saw a large cargo wagon trying to exit through the gate. The driver was having an argument with a guard who was telling him that the gate was only to be used for the stream of incoming villagers looking for shelter from the oncoming Prelacy army.

Suddenly, there was a crash and the wagon tipped over and a large pile of corpses spilled out. A moment later, the corpses animated and began attacking the civilians.

The PCs immediately intervened and began attacking the zombies and skeletons. They proved to be tougher than expected, but a few well-placed swings of Thorgrin’s mace sent them flying. Eventually, it was noticed that one of the corpses, instead of attacking civilians, was attempting to slip through the gate in the chaos. The PCs chased her down. She stepped just outside the wall, beyond site, where it turned out she summoned a nightmare and mounted it. They tried to stop her, but only managed to delay her escape slightly.

Tsar-jai Moonsinger, the eldakar sorcerer came to the ranger’s aid. This is a new character for Steve W, which he is trying out.

After the battle, all but one of the civilians were saved. The rangers found out that the fleeing woman was most likely a necromancer in disguise, known only as “Esha”. A team of local priests had been tracking her down and were close to doing so. It’s believed she needed to make a hasty exit from the city before she was trapped there during the siege.

The rangers have decided to continue tracking Esha for now, leaving Bearheart to the protection of the army.

XP: 5 for Tsar-jai Moonsinger, 2 for everyone else.

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Session 12:
Just in time for the invasion

Having captured Ongar, Darsh and Skoriss began taking him back to Lt. Bardo with the help of the wall guard. Along the way, they were ambushed by some of Lord Captain Wehn’s soldiers. In the battle, Ongar nearly escaped, leaving the guard dead. Darsh managed to capture him again, while Skoriss succumbed to his battle rage and drove off Wehn’s soldiers.

Meanwhile, Silvilagus quickly found the soldier who carried away the scroll from Ongar previously. He was in Lord Wehn’s office along with 2 other soldiers reading it. He was able to entangle the group and with after a brief tussle, was able to escape with the scroll.

Ongar was brought it, Erston was taken into protective custody, and Skoriss was arrested for murdering soldiers. Lord Arnwald held a special military trial and the Rangers were found to be truthful in their claims. Ongar was arrested; the sections of the walls he intentionally sabotaged were repaired as much as possible and reinforced with soldiers; and a number of sabotaged ballistae were repaired. Despite this, the people of Bearheart still don’t know how to feel about the Rangers.

All of this quickly became irrelevant, however, as long-distance patrols came in to report that a large force of the Prelacy’s army was on the way to Bearheart. Horns and bells were sounded in alarm. Beacon fires were lit, the surrounding villages were immediately called into the city, and the army began final preparations for war.

As the session came to a close, near the gates of the city, panic broke out. This is where we will pick up next session.

Silvilagus’ Interlude: Desire
One day, when traveling through the Vaiwood forest, Silvilagus found a young child separated from his caravan. He calmed him and helped him meet back with the caravan, reuniting him with his family. This was the first time Silvilagus became curious about his own origin, and has been looking for his family ever since.

XP: 3

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Session 11:

After interviewing Erston, the siege engineer, Darsh and Thorgrin decided to keep an eye on Erston in the construction site where they built the siege engines. Soldiers loyal to Lord Captain Wehn were arriving and keeping an eye on Erston. Darsh snuck up and was able to overhear a conversation, discovering that they were going to “make a move” on him later- after his shift was over.

Darsh left to warn the other PCs at that point.

Meanwhile, across town, Silvilagus and Skoriss arrived at Ongar’s office to find him leaving a meeting with one of Wehn’s soldiers, who carried a scroll. It was clear from the ink stains on his hands that Ongar had recently written the scroll.

Following Ongar on his rounds along the city’s walls, Silvilagus was attacked suddenly by Ongar. short fight ensued. One of the wall patrols came to Ongar’s defense, but in a surprise turn of events sided with the Rangers. Apparently, the soldier already suspected Ongar. The PCs were able to capture Ongar with the help of the recently arrived Darsh.

Now all they have to do is convince the people of Bearheart of his guilt. To do that, they hope to retrieve the scroll carried by Wehn’s soldier.

Darsh’s Interlude: Love
Years ago, before joining the Rangers, Darsh loved a young Korindian maiden. They would often go fishing together in her father’s boat. One clumsy day, Darsh capsized the boat, losing the day’s catch as well as valuable fishing gear. This felt like the universe telling Darsh that he was on the wrong path in life, and so he soon left Korindia and joined Grayson’s Gray Rangers.

Thorgrin’s Interlude: Victory
This was the story of how Thorgrin earned his large oaken door, which he now uses as his shield. The story can actually be read here: Thorgrin Vhash.

XP: 2

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Session 10:
Cracks in the Walls

The session began with the arrival of the newest ranger, ??, along with his SO, Bernfried- a native Olaran. They split up in order to gather information on the current state of Bearheart. ?? spent a day in the Fae quarter, learning of recent events and even spun some tales of the Gray Rangers, bolstering their support among the elves there.

Spending some time in meetings with Lieutenant Bardo, the PCs decided to begin a more active investigation into “the list”. Beginning with one name: the dwarf, Erston Köhlermann, a siege weapon engineer. His name appeared as one slated for assassination.

They interviewed him and found that he was almost exclusively responsible for the design and maintenance of the city’s advanced medium ballistae. He had recently been frequent contact with Ongar, another dwarf who’s name appeared on the list- this one, presumably, as a traitor. Ongar is responsible for maintaining the walls of the city. It is known that nobody knows the walls like he does.

The plan at this point is to keep watch on both dwarves and see what happens next.

XP: 2

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Session 9:
Trouble in Bearheart

After the defeat of the Prelacy forces north of Bearheart, the PCs discovered that it was a meeting between the spies in Bearheart and a group of paladins from Camon. It was deduced that a few of the names from “the list” were slated for assassination, while a few were traitors.

Silvilagus explored the cave, melding through the stone and discovered a tunnel had been dug and collapsed behind it. A box of 2 more “handcasters” and a cylinder of crystals were also found.

The two well-equipped “officers” were taken into custody and returned to Bearheart, while the lower-ranking soldiers were let go.

On the return trip to Bearheart, a group of young dwarven miners were met and discouraged by the news of Prelacy forces, deciding to return to Bearheart with the PCs.

When they finally reentered the city, it was discovered that their previous prisoner’s head exploded not long after they left. It was suspected that Lord Captain Meiner Wehn, who’s name appeared on the list as a suspected traitor, had visited the prisoner and had been speaking out against the Rangers since. Soldiers from his company intercepted the party, while one of the city guards escorted them to Lt. Bardo. Bardo’s soldiers, along with Wehn’s soldiers took the new prisoners into custody.

A long discussion was had with Bardo. Important names appeared on the list as traitors to Bearheart, including an expert on the city’s defenses. Lord Captain Wehn was no longer to be trusted, but evidence would be needed against him.

The PCs will now spend some time within the city dealing with the factions aligning against them while trying to prepare it for the coming invasion.

XP:

3 for everyone.

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Session 8:
Rendezvous in the north

After realizing that the captured Prelacy spy would never betray his cause, Estellia finished deciphering what remained of the journal. It contained:

  • Information on the each of the city’s gates.
  • A list of names, marked with either an “X”, “Y”, or “Z”.
  • A location near the Northern Range and a date about 3 days north of Bearheart.

Correstose examined the strange weapon he carried and believes it is a “Builder” weapon. His grandfather shared legends of the strange beings in his youth and it matched his descriptions perfectly.

The spy and the information was taken directly to Lieutenant Bardo. He would confer with Lord Arnwald and look into the names on the list while the PCs would go north and look into the location.

They made decent time on horseback, stopping briefly to repair an abandoned sleigh. Once at the location, they made a well-concealed camp and scouted the area. They found a cave entrance several hundred yards away with a mysterious light source within. It wasn’t investigated any further. Then they waited.

The next afternoon, a group of 10 armed and armored people arrived, 2 on horseback. The PCs jumped immediately into battle from an ambush position. Between Silvilagus’ entangling flora and suprise attacks from underground; Correstose’s mental pummeling; and the remaining PCs’ attacks; the group was vanquished and prisoners were taken.

At one point, a dwarf-like person emerged from the cave and began firing on the party with a builder weapon. Before they could capture him, he ducked back into the cave and a crashing of rocks was heard from within.

XP:

2 for everyone.

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Session 7:
Blood Steel & Exploding heads?!?

After leaving the alchemist’s shop, the PCs realized they were being followed by 3 men. One matched the description of one of the Blood Steel’s potential buyers.

One of the pursuers slipped away, and Estellia stepped into an alleyway and came up behind one of the other pursuers. The confrontation didn’t go well. First, the pursuers destroyed their leather-bound journals with vials of acid. Then their head exploded. This caused quite a scene.

The city watch arrived, dispersed the crowd, and an investigation began. The pursuers seemed a little too “local”: their gear being all purchased recently in town. One carried a fancy pen.

The PCs retired to an inn and Estellia began deciphering the surviving journal. She discovered it was written mainly in Olaran lettering, but a few Camonese characters swapped in. She stayed up all night to decode it, but was interrupted by the pursuer who previously eluded them.

Thorgrin palmed his face and dragged him through the window and pinned him to the table. He reached into his pocked for something, but Correstose was able to magic it away from him before he was able to use it. They have him confined, but he isn’t talking. At least not in any language but Camonese.

The investigation will continue next session.

XP:

2 for everyone.

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Session 6:
Search for the missing Rangers

One month after the events of the previous session, Panthumbra and Raina are missing. While Skoriss was away tending to Ranger business with Lt. Bardo, the other two Rangers had disappeared while investigating the myserious “Esha”.

A fresh group of new Rangers arrived in Bearheart. Correstose Fendraygan, the Eldakar Adept, Estellia Whistlewind, Eldakar Archer, Silvilagus, Alakar druid, and Thorgrin Vhash, the Ogre warrior.

Their first task as a newly formed team was to begin investigating the missing Rangers’ disappearance. First, they checked into the last known contacts. The Tower of Sorcery, the Alchemist, and the Church of Light. They learned what Panthumbra and Raina had:

  • A wagon load of blood steel ore had been stolen, and then brutally retaken
  • A troubled graveyard closely watched by the Church had been disturbed a month ago; a few of its inhabitants became restless and had to be put back to rest.
  • A mysterious woman had been spotted entering and then leaving the alchemist, through an alleyway and seemingly emerge from the other side with new appearance. The alchemist was killed a few days later.
  • The alchemist’s apprentice inherited the shop, quickly opened her secret vault, and began looking for sellers for the items within- including potions of concentrated necromantic essence and an ingot of blood steel.

After meeting with the new alchemist, they emerged and found themselves being watched by 3 men- one matching the description of a potential buyer of the blood steel ingot.

XP:

2 for Skoriss, 5 for everyone else (as it’s their first full session)

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Session 5:
Warlocks afoot

This session began with an interrogation of the necromancer, Sigfried. Panthumbra convinced the local guards to allow the Gray Rangers first crack at questioning.

The PCs discovered that the necromancer was working for someone else, more powerful than the PCs. Thus, he was more afraid of her than he was of the PCs. After some negotiation, he decided to give them some information if they were able to break a sort of geas that she had over him, allowing his soul to at least go free after his likely execution by the Olarans. The PCs were asked to find a particular skull with a unique sigil and destroy it. His mistress “Esha” would be keeping it somewhere within a few days travel of their location. He was only able to tell them that she changed her face often, but liked to keep cats. And, she would obviously be up to various acts of necromancy. If the PCs followed those, they would hopefully find her involved.

After the interrogation, 3 representatives of the nearby Goblinesh Gather: a goblin, orc, and ogre arrived and demanded that the necromancer be turned over to them for justice. After all, he killed only 5 humans from Silver Gate, but over a dozen members of the gather, either through murder or corruption. The Rangers calmed down the enraged ogre, and proposed a compromise- that the gather would send a delegation to Silver Gate, and provide the executioner. More details need to be arranged, but Skoriss has agreed to keep an eye on the prisoner as an impartial 3rd party.

The PCs then went to Bearheart to do some investigating:

Raina hit the streets and found a reformed criminal, Erland, who now dedicated his time in service of the Church of Light. Through his former contacts on the street, and his new contact in the church, he was aware of a rumor of a wagon load of supposed Blood Steel ore being robbed, and then the thieves being later killed by apparent necromancy. He also heard a rumor of a cemetery watched over by 3 different churches of light and a sight on the edges of Bearheart where a goblinesh gather was massacred generations ago.

Panthumbra visited the local tower of sorcery and found out the sorcerers’ own investigation found a woman buying ritual materials from a local alchemist, ducking into an alley, and apparently coming out the other side looking like a different woman. She visited the alchemist and managed to convince her that she was a loyal follower of Esha, and left a message to meet her near the old Dwarven watchtower (the new Rangers’ HQ) in two weeks time.

After Action Report:
The PCs still have a couple other avenues of investigation, and plan to set up an ambush for when Esha comes to meet them at the watchtower.

Important NPCs:
Father Sorrin; Siegfried, the necromancer; Esha, his mistress; Bigg, the Goblin; Boshek, the orc tracker; Jerzy, the Ogre; Erland, reformed criminal.

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