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TOPIC: R6 2019 (RotRL) Spires of Xin Shalast

R6 2019 (RotRL) Spires of Xin Shalast 1 month 2 days ago #4369

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I think my brother Steve wants to play so he could reprise Grogg.
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R6 2019 (RotRL) Spires of Xin Shalast 1 month 2 days ago #4370

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Cool. Will prepare a character sheet.
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R6 2019 (RotRL) Spires of Xin Shalast 1 month 16 hours ago #4380

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Spires of Xin Shalast, Week 2 / Part 1

With its people fled, the town of Wolf's Ear is ominously, oppressively quiet, save for the buzzing of the flies that crawl across the bodies of the slain orcs. The Heroes of Sandpoint scavenge enough provisions to last a week, after that, they'll be singing a song of arrows for their supper.

The party shoulder their packs and head into the mountains, the Faresight twins taking the lead. They are soon on the trail of the Vekker brothers. The first day passes uneventfully. On the second day, Aeleana rises with a nagging sense of impending peril that a hearty breakfast does little to quell. Forbin has grown to trust his sister's instincts and scouts the area for trouble. He spots an orcish hunting party following them up the mountain, a pack of direwolves snuffling greedily at their scent.

Forbin raises the alarm! Moments later, orcish arrows are falling into the camp and a half dozen snarling direwolves are among the party! One wolf lunges for Asha's throat, but Karack tackles it in the air and breaks its neck before they hit the ground. Nodding her thanks to the scaly monk, Asha raises her holy symbol and summons Sarenrae's wrath down upon the orc snipers hiding in the trees. A trio of orc fighters make the mistake of thinking 3-1 are good odds against Grogg the Smasher. Grogg swings and Monica sings and three orc heads go rolling down the mountain.

Amidst the carnage, the Faresight twins find themselves surrounded by three bloodthirsty direwolves. Aleana drops her bow and readies a pair of elvish daggers. She buries a blade into one wolf's flank, but the injured beast twists and bites her savagely, jaws locked around her bloodied wrist. Forbin cannot help, he is hard pressed keeping the other two beasts at bay. Suddenly, a cry from the trees, as a young, beardless dwarf in an oversized chainmail vest springs to the rescue! He brains the wolf menacing Aeleana with what appears to be a saucepan! No time for introductions, there are more orcs to kill! No, wait, they're all dead. The dwarf introduces himself.

"Hi! Er... I'm Silas. That's my name. Well, part of it. Vekker. That's... er, the other bit. Yeah. It's nice to meet you. I've been watching you for a while. No, that sounds creepy. I mean, I was, er... watching, but in a normal, curious way. Yeah."

"Did you just say your name is Vekker?" Karack asked.

By happy chance, it seems this awkward teenager is one of the two dwarven prospectors that the party are looking for.

"I mean, Karivek was the one into gold and stuff," Silas explains, "I just came with him because dwarven girls get a wide-on for miners."

"Where is your brother now?" enquires Forbin.

"... Dead."
Last Edit: 1 month 8 hours ago by mikeawmids.
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R6 2019 (RotRL) Spires of Xin Shalast 1 month 14 hours ago #4381

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Spires of Xin Shalast, Week 2 / Part 2

Although it pains him to talk about it, Silas recounts the events leading up to his brother's demise.

"We came out here, just Karivek and I, to stake a claim and make our fortune from this ore-rich earth. We started digging, but we didn't strike gold, or silver or even copper. What we found was much older, and much more dangerous. We broke into a cavern and found a huge, golden door. We were dizzy with excitement, imagining what treasures might lie beyond. We never found out. As we approached, we were attacked by a massive blue demon with breath as cold as a widow's bed! Karivek held it off just long enough for me to escape, but I heard his screams as I fled. I still hear them now, every time the wind blows from the north...."

"Will you lead us to the mine?" Forbin asked gently, "We need to find that golden door and slay the creatures that guard it. You can come along too, it might be therapeutic!"

Silas Vekker (reluctantly) joins the party and takes them to his camp.

An unnaturally cold wind howls from the entrance to the dwarven mine. Drifts of powdery snow have accumulated around the brother's camp. Silas warns that he and Karivek set traps to defend their claim against thieves. The Faresight twins take point and proceed with caution, until Grogg gets tired of their dithering and charges ahead. He triggers every trap in his path but passes unscathed thanks to sheer, dumb luck.

The party reach a shaft descending 60ft into the dark. Silas repairs the broken winch and lowers Karack and Aeleana into the pit. Karack pauses to light a lantern, but Aeleana rushes ahead and slips on a patch of treacherous ice. She bounces down a flight of giant-sized steps and sprains her ankle at the bottom. Looking around, Aeleana realises she is in a cavern, facing a huge golden door.

'Ooh, shiny!' she thinks, completely forgetting everything Silas said about monstrous guardians.

Aeleana hobbles over to the glittering portal and caresses it hungrily. She is still trying to calculate the street value of all that lovely gold when a massive blue demon (straight outta the Hellfrost bestiary) looms from the shadows and claws her back to bloody shreds!

"Arrrggghhhh!!" she screams, then "Arrggggghhhhhh!!!" as two more ice demons pop up.

Hearing his sister's shriek gets Forbin moving. It'll take too long for Silas to crank the lift back up, he abseils down the shaft and rushes to her aid.

Silas panics! Those high pitched, girly screams!! It's just like last time!!! He can't do this! What was he thinking, coming back here?! Mewling like a newborn babe, Silas flees the mine, leaving the heroes to their fate.

Noticing that the intruders have bunched up near the entrance to the cavern, one of the demons exhales a cone of icy breath in their direction. Karack's fingers go numb and he struggles to hold onto his giant-killing spear. Gritting his teeth against that life-draining chill, Karack presses forward until he is close enough to drive the spear through the guardian's chest! He whips the weapon free as the dying demon freezes in place.

It's all Aeleana can do to defend against the first ice demon. Asha casts Protection to enclose the beleaguered elf within Sarenrae's flaming bosom. The demon reels back from that hateful, holy fire. Seizing his moment, Forbin opens fire and the second guardian is turned into an ice sculpture, with an arrow sticking out of its eye.

Grogg exchanges blows with the final demon. Suddenly, a cry from the darkness, as as a young, beardless dwarf in an oversized chainmail vest springs to the rescue! Leaping over Grogg's head, Silas swings his brother's pickaxe with all his might, burying the pointy end into the final guardian's skull! The demon falls backwards as its body turns to ice, exploding into a million frozen crystals as it hits the cavern floor.

"You fought bravely!" Forbin congratulated the young dwarf, "Karivek would be proud."

Karack approaches the golden portal and spies a sideheron-shaped depression in the otherwise flawless surface. He produces one of the many Thasillonian medallions the party have accumulated over the campaign and slots it into the hole. Sorcerous glyphs inscribed into the door light up for the first time in millennia and the gateway to Xin Shalast swings open.

Light floods into the mine, blinding the heroes. As their eyes adjust, they see the face of their hated enemy - Karzoug - carved into the side of a smoking mountain in the distance. The Runelord's stony likeness looks out over a sprawling ruin of giantish proportions - but between the heroes and the city lies a rime encrusted marshland, shrouded in glittering clouds of ice crystals.

Before the party face Karzoug, they must first survive the Icemist Fen.

TBC
Last Edit: 1 month 8 hours ago by mikeawmids.
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R6 2019 (RotRL) Spires of Xin Shalast 3 weeks 2 days ago #4392

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Spires of Xin Shalast, Week 3 / Part 1

Sore from their battle with the ice demons, the heroes opt to rest before heading into the fen. While the rest of the party gather fuel for the campfire, Silas collects stones to raise a cairn atop his brother's body. His voice cracks as he sings an old dwarven mining shanty, whilst splashing a bottle of Sternhammer Special across the makeshift grave.

As the dirge ends, a ghostly figure coalesces from the icy mist.

"I'm sorry, brother." Silas says, tears falling down his smooth, beardless cheek, "I was scared. If I had stayed... If I had fought... Maybe...."

"Hear me, Silas." intones the spectre, "I bear you no ill will. Though the beating of a prideful heart stilled my living tongue, know that I loved you. You found your courage, in the end. My death is avenged.
"My story ends here, but you have yet to forge your own legend. Travel with these friends of yours. They will have need of your newfound strength before the end.
"Take a stone from my cairn and carry it with you, to remember me and to find yourself."


The ghost fades back into the fog. Reverently, Silas kneels beside his brother's grave and slips a smooth, round stone into his pocket.

"Hey! Was that your dead brother?" Aeleana cries, crashing into Silas' grief like a car full of clowns ram-raiding a funeral home, "How can I also benefit from your personal tragedy? What was that he gave you? A magic rock? I want one too! Gimme!!"

"Get your thieving paws of my brother's grave!!"

---

A red sun rises over the Kodar mountains, imbuing the icy mist with a baleful, bloody hue. The heroes break camp and head into the swamp. They need no compass, the golden spires of Xin Shalast are their beacon, yet the way ahead is still perilous. Geothermal vents beneath the mire cause the fen's icy crust to thaw and re-freeze almost instantaneously. Asha leads the party, confident her fire magic will melt through the thick ice, should anyone get stuck on the wrong side. Unfortunately, her survival skills are not as strong as her faith in Sarenrae and she leads the expedition into the hunting grounds of a giant rimewyrm.

The heroes scatter as the gargantuan serpent smashes up through the ice. Over one hundred feet long from teeth to tale, the beast towers above the party. Scaly armour - as thick as a bank vault - covers its body, impenetrable to all but the heaviest of weapons.

The situation looks grim! The heroes face a foe they cannot best and the treacherous ice prevents escape! Suddenly, figures appear from the mist; a half-dozen pale, beautiful women, stark naked despite the cold. In voices clear and cold as fresh snowmelt, the ice dryads weave a song to distract the monstrous wyrm.

"Quickly! We can only be holding it for a little time!" cries one of the dryads, "You will be coming with us, ja? We are knowing a safe place!"

The party must decide whether to trust these odd, wintry women - and soon. Already, the rimewyrm is shaking off the hypnotic effect of their song.

"Alright. Lead the way!" Karack says.
Last Edit: 3 weeks 2 days ago by mikeawmids.
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R6 2019 (RotRL) Spires of Xin Shalast 3 weeks 2 days ago #4393

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Spires of Xin Shalast, Week 3 / Part 2

The dryads lead the party to a sheltered grotto in the heart of the fen. Slightly eggy smelling steam rises from a bubbling hot spring, in which several more dryads are splashing playfully.

"You are being safe now, ja?" says a beautiful fey lady, beckoning the heroes to join her in the steaming pool, "My name is Svevlanka and these are my sisters. We are not getting many visitors. Please, be telling us what is bringing you to our home?"

The heroes shed their suspicions, then their clothes and slip into the water with the nubile dryads. Immersion in the healing water soothes their aching bones and eases their troubled minds. The dryads are having some difficulty with giants, who are building a golden road through the fen. If construction continues, the road will pass through the grotto and their home will be destroyed.

"We also oppose the giants," Karack admits, "If what you say is true, Karzoug will be able to march his army into Varisia, once that road is finished. We have to destroy it."

"Then we are being allies, ja?" Svevlanka says, "If you are destroying the golden road, the giants will be going nowhere fast and our home will be being safe. If you are doing this thing for us, we will be giving you two magical daggers, ja?"

"Yes!" Aeleana cries, being the only party member without a +1 weapon.

---

The party leave the dryad's grotto the next day and continue north, toward the towering walls of Xin Shalast. The new road emerges from the giant city, straight and true as a golden spear. Frost giants oversee a workforce of enslaved yeti. There are too many giants to challenge in a frontal assault and the disposition of the yeti slaves is unclear.

Karack formulates a plan. He shares his plan with the rest of the party. Asha and the Faresight twins blanche, but Grogg grins from ear to ear. This is definitely his kind of plan! Grogg mounts his pet roc and flies back south. The rest of the party hunker down to wait, wondering if they will ever see the deranged half-orc again.

Hours later, Grogg returns, circling low over the golden road. The yetis down tools and gawp skyward as the frost giants hurl rocks (with a k) at the roc (with a c). Suddenly, there is a deafening roar as a furious rimewyrm breaks through the ice and lunges for Grogg, smashing into the road and reducing weeks of hard yeti labour to a field of debris.

"It worked!" Karack cries, "I can't believe it worked!"

The yeti flee! The frost giants stand their ground! Grogg swoops down on the back of his baby roc and beheads a giant with his runeforged axe! The rest of the party rise from the snow and charge into the fray! The enraged rimewyrm continues to pursue Grogg, snaking across the battlefield and destroying anything in its path!

The heroes make short work of the giants and scramble up the flank of the ancient wyrm as it thunders toward the gates of Xin Shalast. The beast smashes through the city wall as though it were made of paper and continues on through the streets, leaving a trail of ruin in its wake. The heroes cling to its icy scales for dear life.

The rimewyrm approaches a tall, golden pagoda in the shadow of the mountain. A 40ft tall rune giant, enclosed in a suit of obsidian armour, guards the entrance. With one swing of its massive sword, the rune giant severs the head of the mighty rimewyrm! The ride is over, now the heroes must fight!

TBC
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mikeawmids - Mon 18 Nov - 10:48

BCRPS Forums > Games Proposals. Your main issue is that Aka hasn't actually made a recruitment thread.

Raging Soliloquy - Mon 18 Nov - 10:16

Just spent 20 minutes trying to find where i post onterest for games and cant find it as i believe threads are unlocked. Would like to join Akas game - saltmarsh if there are spaces which is unlikely

rhodsey - Fri 15 Nov - 15:38

Same if still going on/there is space.

Sant - Fri 15 Nov - 14:36

Mirroring Mel's sentiment r1

MellyMel - Fri 15 Nov - 11:53

Aka I'd like to sign up for salt marsh but not seeing any thread to do so

mikeawmids - Fri 15 Nov - 11:01

!!! IMPORTANT !!! All recruitment threads have been unlocked effective immediately. See General Discussion thread for more info. Bumping to make sure everyone sees this.

BC_Kidge - Fri 15 Nov - 10:34

Wrong place to post! My bad!

BC_Kidge - Fri 15 Nov - 10:33

I'm interested in this! I'll wait to see what other players choose to play before making a character :D

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