[FR]The Return of the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach (updated 8/20!)




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View Poll Results: My favorite Hero is....

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  • Benito

    6 35.29%
  • Aris

    4 23.53%
  • Grim

    2 11.76%
  • Ellysidell

    2 11.76%
  • Ivan

    0 0%
  • Kyros

    0 0%
  • Nosr

    3 17.65%
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  1. #1

    [FR]The Return of the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach (updated 8/20!)

    The Return

    I've decided to start a new thread to make a clean break between the last set of adventures and the new ones. The campaign has taken a major turn, and on the way towards epic, Realms-changing events, I thought a fresh start would be in order.


    The main heroes (i.e. actual player characters) in our tale are:

    Benito Moltos...former cleric of Tyr

    Aris Cloud-dancer...leader of the Stormwolf Legion

    Grim who dances in Shadows...'nuff said

    Ellysidell, Chosen of Fenmaril Mestarine...see above comment

    Ivan Vorshev...former leader of the 32nd Cormyrean Expeditionary Force

    Kyros, the Mithral Knight...super-charged psychic warrior

    Nosr the Resplendent...sorcerer and spellfire-wielder extrordinare

    Their supporting cast:

    Alberia Dorthansdotter, House Lhal...paladin of Tyr from Cormyr

    Souliess, the Psionic Wolverine...former human psion, now an intelligent wolverine

    Khi'rin al-D'hib...chief financial officer in charge of Stormwolf Enterprises/Cloud-dancer Outfitters, etc...

    Jhovan the Grey...spymaster loyal to the legion

    Kith...same as above

    ...and others who will be revealed as the story unravels....
    Last edited by Broccli_Head; Saturday, 21st August, 2004 at 12:08 AM.
    Read The Return of the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach or of their past and find out where all started
    Then check out The Traveller Adventure d20 for something a little different! and the Traveller Adventure d20 Gallery for the dramatis personae or for a little comic book wackiness go to Champions Presents: Legion Extreme! [Hero 5th Ed]


    I am a leaf on the wind. Watch how I soar!

 

  • #2

    in the past....

    This set of adventures takes place in the Forgotten Realms.

    What has gone before...

    Benito Moltos and Aris Cloud-dancer meet on 1 Eleisas, 1372 DR at House Silvio's Weaponcrafters in Alaghon, Turmish, the day after Turmish's Feast of the Moon festival . Benito, failing to commission a custom blade from the weaponmaster is approached by an eavesdropping Aris. Aris offers to make him a sword. The next morning at their camp, south of the capital, a wild elf (Ellysidel) washes on shore. Aris goes back to the city to buy raw materials for several weapons for his growing troupe. On the way, he runs into an half-elf (Nosr) and a sun elf (Mourn) arguing over money matters. Aris asks them to join him as well.

    As they enter Alaghon they are accosted by the city militia and Aris is accused of kidnapping. They discover that Silvio's apprentices, Tolf and Elohnn have disappeared. The accusations are dropped after a solid alibi, persuasion from Mourn, and a promise to help find the lads. The heroes return to camp and inform Benito. Benito and Mourn return to Alaghon and pursue leads on Tolf and Elhonn's wherabouts. This takes them to the new Thayvian Enclave where Benito argues with the mage there, but before things get out of hand, Mourn leads him out. Mourn returns to the camp and Benito goes to the Temple of Justice. The next morning an attempted mugging is made on the cleric, but he triumphs. He learns that the assault is not a coincidence. The heroes regroup at the temple and head out after the apprentices. This takes them in pursuit of a wagon that headed south. They catch up, rescue the boys and arrest two Thayan natives who turn out to be slavers. On the return trip, the prisoners are sequestered by representative druids of the Emerald Enclave. Upon return to Alaghon, the heroes confront the rogue wizard, Kizzaf, defeat her and gain the gratitude of the head of the Red Wizards in Alaghon, a mage named Hinnar.

    They rest for a month, decline a job by the Red Wizards--possibly fearing the wrath of the druids, but take a job to collect snails, a delicacy in Turmish, for a restaurant called Razmiko's. A not-so-sane priest of Ilmater, Brother Salazar, tells Benito that he is the son of a dreaded Malarite. The heroes travel to the far reaches of Turmish, Starfall Stream Pool and the Shadow Wood. On the way they encounter Malarites, a rude adventuring party, a giant bee, and orc raiders.

    Before they enter the woods, they are joined by a paladin of Tyr, Alberia Dorthansdotter. They also learn from a local herbalist that his ranger friend Jazzad is missing. The woods are full of goblins. Jazzad has become mad and so have other animals in the woods. They pick up a moon elf (Balin) who was the lone survivor of a party of elves that was slaughtered by the goblins. The snails are found to be poisonous, their secretions have narcotic properties and can put people to sleep. Jazzad is captured after a tough set of fights, a goblin war band is the captured led by an wily old goblin warrior named Angrad. Angrad is murdered by Balin out of revenge. The rest of the goblin tribe is defeated, along with rats and fiendish animals, and the survivors are banished to the hills. The heroes discover that a quasit was directing the humanoids and unfortunately, the mini-demon escaped. They leave the Shadow Wood and the Valley of Snails, defeat an ogre on the way out and return to Starfall Stream Pool.

    They stay in town for a tenday to train, help Jazzad recover from his madness, and allow the filth feaver to break for Mourn and Elllysidel (who almost dies!). Balin leaves in the middle of the night, stealing Benito's horse. The rest of the group proceeds to Blasingdell to pursue a lead about orc raiders. On the way they are accosted by the same adventuring party that they ran into on the way to SSPool. Not wanting to be pushed around, they defeat them, find a magical sword in the process, and take a prisoner of their leader. They are also attacked by a dark gargolye and the quasit Veshru. In Blasingdell they learn of Khundrukar and the Forge of Fury. They travel to the Stone Tooth, the mountain under which the abandoned dwarven hold lies. They enter not so gracefully from a chimney defeat several groups of orcs quickly, but end in a stalemate, where they and the orcs exchange taunts. This delay allows the orcs to counterattack. The battle is hard fought, with the leader of the orcs, an ogre named Great Ulfe, taking down Benito and then Alberia. Mourn is slain by Ulfe when he stabilizes Alberia, preventing her death. Ulfe is killed by Ellysidell and Aris. The heroes explore one more room, setting off a trap before deciding to forcemarch back to Blasingdell and then onto Alaghon to raise Mourn.

    The bard is raised but decides to retire from adventuring. Aris buys an Inn and makes Mourn the manager. Benito turns over his trusty masterwork sword, Mano de la Justicia to be imbuded with magical power. He discovers that there may be corruption in the Temple of Justice when gathering information on his past is prevented and an assassination atttempt is made on his and Alberia's lives. Milo, a spell-casting Ravenaar joins the group. Grim, the ghostwise halfling who helped Ellysidel to escape slavers also joins the heroes. Nosr discovers that he can wield spellfire and shares this with Benito.

    They set off to finish exploring Khundrukar, this time with more haste, as Alberia reveals that she is searching for her missing father. Her investigations have led her to believe that his last known whereabouts were searching for the legendary Orb of Khundrukar in the dwarven hold. On the way, they are warned by the druids of the Emerald Enclave again to stay clear of the Red Wizards. In Blasingdell, they run into agents of Hlondeth and kill after he magically poisons Aris. On the way to the Stone Tooth, they defeat a party of gnolls and learn that more of their kind have squatted in the former orc hold. The heroes assualt Khundrukar a second time, this time through the front door and defeat the gnolls. After waiting to see if the Hlondethans pursue them for a day without result they proceed to travel into the depths of Khundrukar. Milo saves Grim and Aris from stirges, the heroes defeat a nest of troglodytes, and they discover and defeat other horrors in the ruin's depths.

    Finally, they reach the forge, but it is occupied and being operated on a very low scale by duergar, gray dwarves, under the war leader Nimara. Instead of fighting, Benito and Aris cut a deal with them despite the protests of both Grim and Alberia. They agree to rid the upper halls of the hauntings and take care of a dragon that demands tribute from the dwarves. The clearing of the halls is costly: Alberia loses some of her life essence to a wight, Grim loses some wisdom from the spirit of dwarven priest. However, they are able to put the soul of Durgeddin, the founder of the forge, to rest. They heal and then go after the dragon. Milo again proves his worth and his sacrificial nature by stunning the dragon with his mind-powers, delpleting his own physical power in the process, after the creature had taken down the paladin and was working on defeating the rest. Alberia finds her father's Purple Dragon Ring and Benito discovers that her father was swept down an underground stream after forcing that information from the spirit of the dead dragon. Returning to the duergar after recovering the dragon's horde, they are not doublecrossed and negotiate a deal to trade/buy mithral. After some arguement, the party returns to clear the halls. Aris loses some pride an almost some of his own life energy to a succubus but the heroes recover texts and examples on how to create rare alloys like darksteel and mithral as well as a magical tome dedicated to Moradin. They leave Khundrukar with heavy hearts. Their only 'consolation' is that they have a trade partnership with the gray dwarves, but even that is tainted with some regret.

    While in the depths of Khundrukar, their camp is attacked by the Hlondethan spies. Their henchman are killed except for young Leo, the groomsman who has been poisoned by the enemy and slowly is turning into a snake creature. From Khundrukar they return to Blasingdell where they are given a feast by the local lord. It is only a temporary respite from the scars that were left from the excursion in the depths. They make their way home taking a new and hopefully faster route. By now winter is fast approaching in Turmish. Storms and some snow has already fallen in the heights of the Orsaun Mountains, but the lowlands are just cold and wet. Wild animals have already come down from the heights and into Turmish. The heroes fight a couple and then as they travel north of a ruined manor and keep, relatively wild with some overgrown woods, they are attacked by orcs in the guise of priests of Chauntea. The orcs on the road are defeated and it is discovered that they are Zhentarim-trained from the Stonelands. Grim discovers more orcs on a hill and at a farmhouse. It seems like the prelude to an invasion. The party moves to stop the Zhents, securing both a shed with some ancient looking obelisk, and a farmhouse where many orcs have holed up. They discover that the obelisk is a portal that a half-fiendish orc spellcaster is trying to get back into operation. They also meet Aif, a member of the Night Masks who was running an spy-ring based on the farm, now a prisoner of the Zhentarim. Grim attempts to kill him after some mental funny business. However, Aris lets the spy go, nearly, causing a rift between him and the halfling. Reluctantly, Grim accompanies the rest of the party to make an assault on the underground base, now firmly in the grasp of the Zhent strike force, before the portal is activated.

    Meanwhile, Alberia and Milo take off with the groomsman to Alaghon to warn the Temple of Justice. During the flight, they are attacked by more Zhents near a ford crossing. Alberia makes a stand, but unknown help arrives to attack the Zhentarim allowing her and Milo to escape and reach the capital.

    Also, while the heroes were slogging through the depths of Khundrukar, elven bounty hunters came to the Great Axe Inn and kidnapped Mourn to take him to Everska to stand trial. The inn is now owned by a mysterious Mulhorandi merchant, named Thazar-de, who is not such a nice person.

    In a precision raid, the Heroes take the Zhentarim advance base discovering that the portal is activated by blood. Three days later, Tyrites under Lord Denton Crimsgard arrive to take control of the situation and the Blood Portal. The heroes return to Alaghon expecting a hero's welcome, which never comes.....

    to be continued...
    Last edited by Broccli_Head; Wednesday, 12th March, 2003 at 05:43 PM.
    Read The Return of the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach or of their past and find out where all started
    Then check out The Traveller Adventure d20 for something a little different! and the Traveller Adventure d20 Gallery for the dramatis personae or for a little comic book wackiness go to Champions Presents: Legion Extreme! [Hero 5th Ed]


    I am a leaf on the wind. Watch how I soar!

  • #3
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  • #4

    What has gone before, part II (long)

    To add insult to the injury of being ignored by the mage-council of Alaghon, the heroes discover Mourn is missing and that the Great Axe Inn is no longer owned by them. It has been commandeered by a mysterious Mulhorandi merchant named Thazar-de. They are joined by the dwarf Einekil Lutgar, a veterean of Ithal Pass who recognizes Aris. They confront Thazar-de who turns out to be a half-fiend priest of Set, and a battle ensues. The heroes prevail againt 'de, but at the cost of Milo and Einekil. The half-fiend and one of his magic-using henchman flee. Here, Ellysidell gains possession of Golden-fire, which he pries from the dead fingers of Thazar-de's half-orcish cohort. Fortunately, allies among the Emerald Enclave take the heroes' tale of a Zhentarim invasion seriously and violent storms lash the coast of Turmish for nearly a tenday. The invasion never comes and the Heroes are convinced that the ships, and the Zhentilar marines they carried, rest at the bottom of the Sea of Fallen Stars.

    During the winter of 1372, Aris has a ship commissioned. The keel is laid for the Wave of Destiny. Aris also successfully sues the Ministry of Real Estate in Alaghon and wins 7500gp for their unlawful transfer of the inn's deed to Thazar-de. Meanwhile, Alberia takes a retreat to Castle Grimjaws to get over a deep depression that has set in since returning from Khundrakar. on 23 Alturiak of 1373, the heroes are hired by a Lord Danwick to rescue his pregnant daugther from an evil group of kidnappers. That same day, the late Milo the younger's uncle, Milo the Elder, arrives and subdues the Heroes before they are able to explain what happened to his nephew. Satisfied that heroes did not kill Milo, the white-haired psion has his nephew's body exhumed. He disappears back to wherever psions go, but leaves his former bodyguard, Variak the psychic warrior with the party to continue to monitor Nosr. That night the heroes discover that Danwick's daughter is actually in league with cultists of a Nameless evil god. A gnome artificer, Babu of Lantan is rescued from their clutches and then they defeat the cultists, rescuing Danwick's grandson before he is sacrificed in some twisted ritual. The cult temple is destroyed in the process and the heroes get a manor house as a reward. Aris converts the resisdence to a wayward house for orphans, placing a ranger named Gareth Oakenbow, that they also rescued from the templed, in charge. The newborn, which Lord Danwick refuses to recognize, is whisked away to Ilighon for the Emerald Enclave to raise.

    On the 29th of Alturiak, the Wave of Destiny sets sail, barely avoiding taking three Cyricists as passengers. The goal of the Heroes now is to retrieve Mourn from Evereska. On the journey, Thazar-de's former mage henchman tries to assassinate Aris. The heroes take him out and arrive in Westgate on the 6th of Ches.

    Westgate nearly destroys the heroes. First, Alberia sees the gladiator called the Scourge whom she feels very strongly is her father Dorthan. Then, after dropping the converted doppleganger Aif/Kith off at the Abbey of the Blinding Truth and first, returning to the ship to confer with Aris, Benito leads Nosr, Ellysidell, Grim, and Babu to attempt to get an interview with the Scourge at the Colisseum of Westgate, run by the Quivering Thumb Stable. Before they are granted an audience, they have a confrontation with a very prejudice elf who insults the group. After mutal verbal abuse the elf leaves, but not before casting a spell that causes Babu to attack Nosr and Ellysidell to nearly go after minions of the Quivering Thumb. The elf is a member of the Night Masks and while this subset of the Heroes is resting at a nearby tavern contemplating what to do next, Nosr's familiar Squatto is killed. Nosr runs out into the street calling out his familiar's name before anyone can stop him, and He is assassinated. Benito kills some Night Masks, but returns to find Babu gone, Ellysidell and Grim subdued and left helpless with a note of warning from the Night Masks. They are joined by an envoy of the Emerald Enclave named Meliane, and Benito rashly decides to visit the Scourge. The heroes are very nearly, utterly defeated by the Quivering Thumb and one of their Banelar servitors, but Benito negotiates a detente and Grim, Ellyisdell, Meliane, and the priest are escorted out under heavy guard. Grim did discover, to his satisfaction, that the Scourge was indeed Dorthan Lhal. These four Heroes rest at the Abbey of the Blinding Truth where Nosr is to be raised the next day. Benito sends a messenger to Aris to inform him of the tragedy.

    This action proves to be fatal for the Wave of Destiny, her crew, and apparently for Aris, Alberia, and Variak. Night Masks led by a shadow dragon calling herself the Countess of Shadows attacks the ship after tossing the head of the messenger onto the ship. As a result of the battle, Aris's ship is set on fire and explodes due to flammable materials in the hold. Many of the crew are slain by Night Mask killers in the water as they attempt to flee.

    The next day, Benito, Grim, and Ellysidell hear about and then go to view the gristly aftermath of the Wave's destruction. They find no survivors but discover that the Night Masks are the culprits. That evening, two of Aris's merchant employees Khi'rin al-D'hib and Souliess of Raven's Bluff, arrive to present Aris's last will and testament. The mood is somber, especially after divinations about their missing comrades are cryptic. The high abbot of the abbey, Grigor Khazar, councils the remaing heroes to leave. Nosr and Kith remain, while the rest of the group including Meliane, Khi'rin and Souliess travel via a directed windwalk to Sunset Vale. There, they are to remain and recover at the Temple of Ilmater in the village of Twillight Hollow.

    Here they are sequestered to help the lost soul of a paladin hero Shaunnra by the high priestess of Ilmater, Andress Nagheson. The priestess deceives the hero's for she is in fact a worshipper of Lovitar, and sends them on a wild goose chase to a haunted valley, a former holy site of the god Talos. Souliess dies and is reicarnated as a wolverine and the heroes are plagued by seemingly random attacks by increasingly tougher extra-planar opponents. The heroes travel to Irieabor and back, leaving Khi'rin in the City of Many Spires to sell some booty from the evil valley. After the death of Ellysidell by the fiery blades of an efreeti assassin in Twillight Hollow, Benito calls for deific intervention. He is visited by Suldolphin, General of the armies of Ilmater, who retrieves Nagheson, reveals the betrayal, and has Benito take an oath to recover the Gatekeeper's Crystal for the Triad. The heroes are joined by an elven ranger named Faun, who had been tracking a bandit henchman of the priestess, and descend into the catacombs underneath Twillight Hollow to clean out the hidden temple of Lovitar. There they are joined by Ivan Vorshev, leader of the 32nd Cormyrean Expeditionary Force, and Aris Cloud-dancer's old teacher. He had been on his way to Westgate to meet him, but heard of his death from Khi'rin in Irieabor. The temple is cleared and consecrated, an evil cauldron is destroyed, and the soul of Shaunnra is freed from the foul Devourer that held her. Benito and Grim, the last of the original Heroes of the Vilhon Reach, return to Irieabor to finish their quest--the rescue of Mourn.


    Aris, Alberia, and Variak are not dead. After the demise of the Wave of Destiny, the trio manages to escape. Only Alberia actually dies in the ship battle. They gain entrance into the temple of Tymora in Westgate where Alberia is raised. And after six days of recuperation, they emerge totally reinvented as the Stormwolves. Aris becomes Jenner Stormwolf, Alberia is Valeria the Red, and Variak becomes Kyros, the Mithral Knight. Backed by the temple and the Harpers in the form of the Harper Priestess, Sandrine, the Stormwolves collect Nosr and Kith and then set about rescuing Babu from the Fire Knives. In the process, they capture and then recruit Jhovan the Grey, an assassin from Tashalar forced to serve the Fire Knives. Then the Stormwolves free some gladiators from their very indebted master and even manage to purchase his house in auction. Manta del Ray is among the gladiators. The manor staff is purged of Night Mask spies by Jhovan and Kith and the house is put back on track with the help of the loyal butler Randall Crownwood. Aris/Jenner continues to rebuild, tracking down one of the former leaders of the Mercenary Guild of Westgate (now defunct or disbanded), Varen. When they find him they end up fighting against vampires in the rough tavern where Varen has been drinking himself silly. Money and influence allows the Stormwolves to receive and invitation to a Masked Ball sponsored by House Cormaeril, the leaders and financial backers of the Fire Knives. While the ball rages, Varen and Jhovan rescue Jhovan's mother and son. The festivities are interrupted by an assassination attempt on a Thayan wizard, Lord Bordulin. Chaos ensues as members of the Night Masks attending the ball seek to take advantage of the confusion to slay Lord Cormaeril. The Stormwolves indirectly aid their host, and fight and defeat (but do not destroy) two vampire leaders of the Night Masks, including Draegen Guldar, the Count of Coins and the elf (now a vampire) that had Nosr killed. As the Night Masks are defeated and the Thayans flee, Lord Cormaeril thanks the remaining Stomwolves (Kyros, Manta, Alberia, and Aris) by detaining them for the evening, interviewing Aris/Jenner and Alberia/Valeria before their release.

    Inadvertantly, Nosr helps the mage who tried to assassinate the Thayans, escape and escorts him/her into the Stormwolf House. Jhovan and Kith find out and imprison the mageling named Souless. Aris/Jenner returns that afternoon and realizing that their identities will soon be compromised begins plans to move the household to Cormyr. He also recruits Souless. Before the Stormwolves leave, they make an attempt to rescue Dorthan Lhal, aka the Scourge. They set up a one-on-one combat between the Scourge and Manta. Unfortunately, Manta and Kith are charmed by the illithid masters of the Quivering Thumb while visiting the Scourge in the Colisseum against advice. The betrayl nearly gets all of the Stormwolves captured or killed. Dorthan Lhal is not rescued. Souless falls and Kith disappears. If not for the timely stampede of cattle instigated by Kyros, Alberia and Jhovan would have died as well. Aris leads the weary troop from Westgate vowing vengeance on the Quivering Thumb and the Night Masks. They make their way back to Cormyr, stopping in Suzail briefly before travelling to Dragonstorm Castle, Alberia's new holding. In Suzail they are commissioned to perform a clearing mission in the Stonelands by agents of the crown.

    Meanwhile, Benito and the remainder of the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach scry and locate Mourn. Teleporting to his location with the help of Prespur the Traveller, he is quickly retrieved in a successful Scry and Fry operation against his Eldereth Veluthra captors, only to discover that he is under the power of an evil sword the heroes learn is the Starym Moonblade. Faun, the elven ranger is killed by the wailing spirit of the sword. The sword is imprisoned in the High Tower of Iriaebor's dungeon under protective wards. The heroes also learn that, Mourn's separation from the sword is also causing him to die. Prespur, also an archmage of Irieabor, prolongs his life with magic while the heroes teleport to the Chondalwood to return Ellysidell's body. Instead of a burial, the heroes witness a resurrection as the wild elf comes back as the Chosen of Fenmaril Mestarine. Benito returns to Alaghon to tie up loose ends finally reconcilling with Denton Crimsgard and returning Moradin's Prayers of the Faithful to a dwarven delgation from Ironfang Keep. The rest of the heroes return to Irieabor to guard the sword.

    Eldereth Veluthra attacks the High Tower in the pre-dawn hours of 7 Tarsakh, 1373. They are led by an elven lich and his minions including a great green dragon. Two more greens and the Black Talon Mercenaries join against the good folk of Iriaebor. Mourn is taken, but the sword is not as Ivan and Benito word of recall back to Alaghon. Lord Bron and Prespur are killed in the action. The Shields of Irieabor are driven from the High Tower and the Heroes are scattered. Ellysidell and a captured EV wild elf named Talindra, along with Grim escape in one direction, while Khi'rin and Souliess along with the remaining warriors from Ivan's expeditionary force under his lieutenant Sergei of Kozakura regroup at the Temple of Eldath in the city.

    The evil moonblade is safely stored in Alaghon. Benito and Aris finally contact one another as a plan is made to attempt to retake the High Tower in Irieabor the next day. The forces of good are defeated in Irieabor and the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach fortunately make their escape after being routed by the elven lich in an attempt to assault him directly. Balagos the Flying Flame drives away the green dragons and leaves the way clear for Zhentarim from Darkhold to occupy the city. Aris regroups the Heroes, the Cormyreans, and some Shields. They find Benito's unconscious body in field outside the city and begin the long march back to Cormyr.

    After a brief stay at Dragonstorm Castle, the heroes disperse across Faerun. Aris begins to build his mercantile empire with the help of Khi'rin, Nosr, Kyros and Alberia. Ivan retires and heads west. Benito wanders north. Souliess, the psionic wolverine, returns to Raven's Bluff. Grim heads to Sembia and Ellysidell returns to the Chondalwood.

    The tale picks up five years later in 1378, the Year of the Cauldron....
    Last edited by Broccli_Head; Tuesday, 11th March, 2003 at 08:47 PM.
    Read The Return of the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach or of their past and find out where all started
    Then check out The Traveller Adventure d20 for something a little different! and the Traveller Adventure d20 Gallery for the dramatis personae or for a little comic book wackiness go to Champions Presents: Legion Extreme! [Hero 5th Ed]


    I am a leaf on the wind. Watch how I soar!

  • #5
    ...edited part II of What Has Gone Before above....

    AND here begins The Return

    Late Spring, 1378, Year of the Cauldron

    The hawk soared over the multi-colored spires and minnarets of Alaghon, Jewel of Turmish. It could have travelled to its destination in a quicker, less taxing way, but the hawk needed to think and let its emotions simmer down. He could not tell if it was anger, jealousy, or disappointment that assailled his heart and his mind. Fortunately, loyalty and love always won in the end. He would do anything for his big brother even when he didn't agree. The hawk did a wingover near the Assembly of Stars and headed south along the coast.

    He did not need to go far and slowly began his descent, spiralling towards a series of gardens and orchards dominated by several well-maintained residences. A bold sign proclaimed this facility to be the Retreat of the Missing Bard in great golden, green-outlined letters. The name warmed his heart and stirred wonderful memories of a friend long gone.

    Patrons of the retreat milled around the immaculately horticultured landscaping. The hawk landed behind a familiar shack near the main hall of the retreat complex and shook his feathers, weary of the journey. Had anyone been watching--but the hawk made sure no one was--they would have seen the quick transformation of the bird of prey. In the span of heartbeats stood a tall and resplendant half-elven male, dressed in black silk breeches and a white silk shirt. He strode into the inn, his black,sable cloak with gold and red trim billowed behind him.

    **

    Khi'rin al-D'hib sat behind a few piles of papers and books. This quarter's taxes would soon be due and Khi'rin was desperately trying to catch up on the books for al-D'hib enterprises and the reports to send to Suzail. It had been unbelievably bountiful the first quarter and this second one would undoubtedly break records. Waukeen and Tymora were smiling on their faithful, and even though the work was tedious and had to be meticulous, the merchant priest of Waukeen could not help but hum a tune and smile while he worked.

    His inspired accounting was abruptly interrupted as the doors to his office opened and a clerk, on loan from the Temple of Tyr, stuck his head in.

    "Master al-D'hib, there's someone here to see you. He says it is urgent," he said in a half-whisper.

    Khi'rin made a face.

    "Have him make an appointment, like everyone else," he replied returning to his books.

    "I tried, sir, but-"

    Nosr the Resplendant barged past the acolyte-clerk of Tyr swirlling his cloak and with much flourish bowed to Khi'rin.

    As he stood up, he tossed a small, envelope gilded with gold-leaf at Khi'rin with a flick of his wrist as if throwing a shuriken. The envelope landed on the table, spun rapidly a few times, and halted. Khi'rin saw his name, right side up, on the cover in Alzhedan calligraphy.

    Khi'rin rose. "Nosr! It's great to see you!"

    Sometimes the priest of Waukeen felt isolated down here in Alaghon. His communication with Aris and rest was only through Kith, Jhovan or other Grey 'Wolf agents when they happened to stop and deliver orders or pick up reports, and although Souliess popped in from time to time, his being a wolverine still made Khi'rin uncomfortable.

    Nosr raised an eyebrow. "I wish it were better circumstances."

    The sorcerer, still not much older than 20 winters, sighed.

    Khi'rin blanched. Had something happened to his cousin, or Alberia? Had they heard from Benito or Grim or Ellysidell?

    "Whatever do you mean? What has happened?"

    Nosr motioned to the envelope.

    "See for yourself."

    Nosr sighed again, melodramatically, then added, "Although, I wish that I could take advantage of what you and the druids have done with the inn, I cannot stay. I have other in-," he pursed his lips. "I have other news to deliver and more friends to track down."

    Khi'rin smiled, "So you like what you see?"

    Nosr shrugged his shoulders and spun around on his heels. Khi'rin furrowed his eyebrows and looked at the envelope again.

    Nosr turned back briefly and added, "For the record, I am NOT Aris's errand boy!"

    And with an arcane gesture, slammed the door behind him. Khi'rin heard the audible "POP!" of the air being displaced as Nosr teleported away. The clerk stood staring at Khi'rin, still in shock at the youth's entrance.

    Khi'rin bit his lower lip and looked at the envelope for a third time. He quickly cast an orison to detect the magicks associated with the item.

    "No reason to stop being cautious," he mutterd out loud.

    Feeling the envelope was safe to open, Khi'rin pulled out a dagger and tore free the seal. The illusion of faerie dust spilled from the envelope and the letter it held inside flew out after the golden motes of light. It opened and floated before Khi'rin as he read the contents. Finished in a mater of seconds, he laughed out loud, plopping back in his chair and propping his feet on the desk. The clerk cringed as a few stray sheets of paper floated to the floor.

    "Cousin, it's about time!" Khi'rin yelled out loud.

    "Ephrain," he told the clerk, "start packing. We're going to Cormyr!"

    Then, he couldn't help but spin in his chair and "Whoop!" out loud.
    Last edited by Broccli_Head; Tuesday, 11th March, 2003 at 11:16 PM.
    Read The Return of the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach or of their past and find out where all started
    Then check out The Traveller Adventure d20 for something a little different! and the Traveller Adventure d20 Gallery for the dramatis personae or for a little comic book wackiness go to Champions Presents: Legion Extreme! [Hero 5th Ed]


    I am a leaf on the wind. Watch how I soar!

  • #6
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    Ignore Malachai_rose
    I like the way you portrayed Khirin and Nosr very nice and on the mark. I am looking forward to seeing how the rest of it turns out. And before I go, why didnt my invitation do all that fancy shmancy stuff ? I feel gipped
    Last edited by Malachai_rose; Wednesday, 12th March, 2003 at 03:13 AM.
    "The man in black fled across the desert and the gunslinger followed"

    -Stephen King-

  • #7
    Cool post cant wait till Nosr presents the letter to Grim. It has been lonely in Sembia without his companions but Grim kept himself occupied


    I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn my inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.

    From the Bene Gesserit Training
    Frank Herbert, Dune
    Last edited by Grimm; Wednesday, 12th March, 2003 at 03:11 AM.

  • #8
    As you wish....

    Early Summer, 1378, Year of the Cauldron

    Ten, maybe twenty, came the voice in his head as he crept along the roof of a warehouse in the Underbelly, Selgaunt's worst district. He passed on the information with quick hand signals as he reached the roof's trapdoor where another blackclad rogue peered into a hollow tube that had bee stuck through a hole in the roof. The newcomer looked through the tube to confirm what had already been communicated to him in his head.

    Signalling again with his hands to allies scattered across the rooftop, he sent to his companion.

    On three...., then with his small, almost child-like hands he counted.

    At three, the world exploded for a large group of unwitting Night Knives, members of one of Selgaunt's several thieves' guilds. Glass crashed, and the Night Knives heard each other's screams as a rival gang cut them down mercilessly. The few that survived the first six heartbeats, saw a masked, halfling darting in and out from the shadows directing the hit. The assassins slew without a sound and the conflict was over not soon after the initial assault.

    The halfling dispatched a couple of his followers to check for stragglers as he took a wolf's headed coin and tossed it on the nearest body. Not usually one to give in to emotion, Grim held back a tears. It had been over two years since he last visited Benito in that really cold place, and It had been even longer since he had seen Aris. Ironic that the framing of the Darkstalkers would remind him of his old friend...

    Well his obsession with wolves anyway, Grim said to himself and anyone within 20 paces quelling his emotions and bringing him back to reality.

    Ordering a few booby traps to be set for appearences, Grim and the rest of his "gang" quit the warehouse and the Underbelly as quietly as they had come.

    **

    Later that evening...

    "I had an easier time finding you than I expected," said a non-descript human as he tossed an envelope at Grim.

    Lighting quick, the halfling drew his kama and swatted the object away. In the next instant he and two of his companions were on the stranger: Grim on the table, kama to the man's throat and Grim's two friends in flanking positions, daggers drawn. The envelope meanwhile did a loop in the air and flew back to the table settling at the halfling's feet. Also, they had caused everyone enjoying their beef skewers and ale here at the Green Gauntlet, to stop and look their way. Grim growled at the unwanted attention.

    He nodded to one of his fellows who whispered in the stranger's ear, "You'd better have a quick tongue and a good explanation."

    With a grunt of disdain, Nosr threw off his magical disguise causing more looks and stares in their direction as he rose to his full splendor. Grim gasped and to the surprise of his fellow rogues gave Nosr a hug. Then he picked up the envelope as he belted Cruelty's Nemesis and sat back down.

    Uncharacteristically, he spoke, "Nosr, what brings you here?"

    The mage pointed to the envelope. Grim left it there. "I'll look at it later. Won't you sit and eat with us?"

    Nosr's stomach growled. The skewers did smell good.

    "Thanks, I am hungry."

    Shortly, Grim's two companions brought food and drink. The mage wolfed it down. Grim introduced his friends as the group ate, but the mage did not pay attention. After Nosr finished, he looked around.

    "So what is all this?" he motioned to the two men and several other strategically placed individuals in the common room.

    "Have you succumbed to your baser instincts? Are you running a small guild? Benito would take issue."

    Grim just smiled and motioned for Nosr to come in closer. Opening his palm, he showed him a silver pin...a harp in front of a moon.

    Nosr laughed, "You, a Har-!"

    Grim slapped him, Sorry!

    Nosr rubbed his face and glared while Igg and Uuk reached for weapons.

    Sorry, my friend. We don't want to reveal ourselves. We're having too much fun underground causing trouble and killing evil...And unfortunately, everybody talks.

    Grim motioned for Uuk to follow a person who had tried to leave discreetly after Nosr's outburst.

    "Fine...," answered Nosr, adjusting his jaw, "Just. Not. In the face..."

    Grim grimaced. "Yes, that will leave a mark."

    Nosr finished his meal and his drink and then took his leave.

    "Thanks for the visit, Grim. I have to get to finding my next victim."

    Nosr smiled and bowed and "popped" out of existence.

    Grim stared at the space where Nosr had been for a while and then turned his attentions to the envelope. Uuk had returned limping but nodded his head. He slid a silver blade across the table.

    sigh...more competition... thought the halfling and buried his head in his arms still peeking at the mysterious envelope.

    The burdens of leadership, he said to himself looking around at his fellow Harpers and allied agents that were spread among the patrons in the room.

    He opened the envelope. His name scrawled in black, flowery Chondathan.

    Dark shadows escaped from their confines and coalesced together to form a message. Grim's eyes went wide as he read, and then he began to roll on the floor, laughing. Igg and Uuk moved to help but Grim waved them off. He laughed so hard that he beagn to cry. Eventually he stopped and bought a round for the house....

    Leaving word with the Temple of Oghma, he headed for Cormyr the next day.
    Last edited by Broccli_Head; Wednesday, 12th March, 2003 at 08:55 PM.
    Read The Return of the Heroes of the Vilhon Reach or of their past and find out where all started
    Then check out The Traveller Adventure d20 for something a little different! and the Traveller Adventure d20 Gallery for the dramatis personae or for a little comic book wackiness go to Champions Presents: Legion Extreme! [Hero 5th Ed]


    I am a leaf on the wind. Watch how I soar!

  • #9
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    Ignore Malachai_rose
    Woot, Grim the guild leader heheh... very cool. I can just picture the little guy now. Like a big tickle me elmo doll, except with pointy weapons and a bad temper, LOL

    Great post Broc, looking to the rest
    "The man in black fled across the desert and the gunslinger followed"

    -Stephen King-

  • #10
    Once again I must say "Very Cool post".
    About Grim hiding behind a mask .. errr
    guess it would be prudent but he definalty needs to get an amulet of mind blank or something along those lines commisioned. When activly hiding skill plenty good enufff but ah need make mental note ... my will save is horrid and scrying sucks
    Last edited by Grimm; Wednesday, 12th March, 2003 at 09:34 PM.
    I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn my inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.

    From the Bene Gesserit Training
    Frank Herbert, Dune

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