Defender of Oerth
EPIC CAMPAIGN LOG: PART ONE OF FOUR.
Yesterday, Reaping 17, CY 963:
Sphynx, you're sitting at your usual table, in the back of your favorite tavern, secluded from the drunken throng by dim lighting, heavy smoke, loud noise, and frequent activity; knowing your distaste for such environs, your great grandson, who also happens to be the tavern owner, has taken the time to enchant your table with a single rune, one which serves to heighten the shadows around your table, as well as to mute the noise, repel the smoke, and better illuminate the rest of the tavern, all for your benefit, and for the benefit of all who are seated here with you.
At the moment, you share your table with only one person, an old friend of yours named Tellerian Hawke. You have often wondered how someone with such an unguarded profile has managed to remain so obscure for so long. After all, there aren't many 7-foot-four-inch immortal half-Elves walking around with two adamantine swords strapped to their back. And fewer still who wear the amulet of Thor so openly, the amulet being a renowned sign of Thor's chosen. And yet, here he sits, without a care in the world, going on and on about how proud he is of his son, and about how much he loves Sylen's homemade beer.
Of course, you muse, he does do a lot of plane-hopping. The fact that he's here, in this world, was proof enough of that. And that, in and of itself, would be sufficient to obscure him from the general public, to allow him to fade into the annals of legend, but it would fail miserably to hide him from his true enemies. They plane-hop, too. And if they followed him here, the modest magic around the table would not suffice to mask his presence.
Of course, he's sitting here at YOUR table. You own this world, and anyone of any consequence knows that. Here, you make the rules. And while a well-prepared enemy or two might be bold enough to attack Tellerian here, they would think twice before taking on the two of you TOGETHER. Perhaps that is why he is here so frequently, you muse. Talking your ear off, and running up a tab at your great grandson's tavern. It's the only place that he feels safe.
Tellerian turns to you, and says, "I think I'm drunk. I'm beginning to see things."
The hairs on the back of your neck stand up; you know very well that such a feat as the inebriation of Tellerian Hawke would require a veritable ocean of beer, which your great grandson would be unable to provide, even on his slowest, and most well-stocked day.
Tellerian smiles, and tilts his mug slightly in your direction. "Do you see a hammer floating there, on top?"
Indeed, the thin foam at the top of the beer is shaped like a hammer. Your senses detect the faintest spark of magic, from a divine source, a source not of this world. After concentrating for a moment, you are able to determine that the source is other-planar, that is to say, not prime material. Generally, it is of the outer planes, and after only a moment, you are able to narrow it down to one specific plane: Asgard.
Before you can answer, Tellerian chuckles, "Looks like the big man needs his errand boy. Must be something important. Want to tag along?"
MEANWHILE, BACK ON OERTH:
Luis, you're deep in meditation, sitting perfectly still in the middle of Shokindo's dojo. You have been in this state for several hours, your only company being a single cockroach which has crawled up onto your upper back. You can feel its life force, vibrant and vital, despite its diminutive size; it has come here in search of warmth, to escape the cold weather. You can feel that it is near the end of its life cycle, and you wonder what form its spirit will take next. Perhaps a bird; perhaps a lion. You cannot know for sure. But you do know that it will happen soon. The cockroach knows it, too.
Suddenly, your eyes snap open. Before you, as if in a waking dream, you see many Dwarves, all fighting a single creature, and all of them being killed methodically, two and three at a time, as if their opponent were sweeping a floor, or wiping a counter. You know, in your inner-most being, that what you are seeing should not be. This creature does not serve the balance. This creature should not exist. Something must be done to set things right. The creature itself is only the symptom, of a much larger sickness. You know at once that you should inform the others. The cockroach, as if sensing that you are about to stand, spreads its wings, and buzzes away, through the open window, back out into the cold air. The thought occurs to you that perhaps you should follow it.
MEANWHILE, IN THE CITY OF SIGIL:
Dengar, you're sitting at the dining room table, seated across from your friend Feridan, in the penthouse suite of The Berk Hotel in the city of Sigil. The penthouse is occupied by your adventuring company, The Fearless Five. The rent is due today, as it is on the 17th day of every month. That's what you and Feridan are doing at the table, counting out gold coins, making sure that you have exactly 10,000 gold to give to Mr. Nanfrites, your Pit Fiend landlord.
Suddenly, Feridan pauses, and hands you one of the coins. "What do you make of that?" he asks.
The coin you are looking at is solid gold, just like its 9,999 brothers who occupy your table. But the markings on the coin are swirling, and changing shape. They keep forming the same three letters, in the same sequence: S C L
It is very obviously an omen, and due to the obscurity of its message, it is not something that needs to be known to the populace of Sigil. Someone has gone to great lengths to mask the omen in the form of a riddle.
MEANWHILE, ON THE GOOD SHIP "STARWAVE:
Pete, you're not sure why you booked passage on The Starwave, after swearing you'd never set foot on another SpellJammer ship again. And yet, here you stand, on the deck of one of the most famous SpellJammer ships of all (with the exception of The SpellJammer itself,) headed back to the place you swore you'd never return to: Sigil.
All you know for sure is this: you can't shake the feeling that you need to go. And you can't shake the feeling that your presence will make a big difference in an upcoming (future) event. And whatever is going to happen, it's going to happen, or at least start, in Sigil. You know this because of who you are, and where you came from. You know this because it's your job to know; you are the chosen, the one of legend, the one who will always be.
Yeah, you muse, quietly and to yourself: the one who will never enjoy retirement. The one whose life will never truly be his own.
But then again, you knew all of that when you signed on for this job. This ain't your first omen. And you damn sure ain't no berk.
---END OF STARTING TEXT---
P.S. Luis, the "creature" you see in your vision is roughly humanoid in shape, but you can't see it clearly.
8:22 AM Nov 11
Sphynx takes a drink from his wine then sets the glass on the table. No expression betrays his thoughts, no smile, no frown, no movement of the eyes. "This Asgardian lacks temperament; but at least, he also lacks the avarice of that Olympian you use to follow when you still wielded sword and shield. No, my friend. My time is passed." With that he fades from view.
10:57 AM Nov 11
Hawke scans the tavern is disbelief... there is no sign of The Sphynx anywhere. In fact, there is no sign that he was there to begin with. Hawke finds no traces of magic from any spells that might have brought him here or that would have allowed him to leave; no teleport spells, plane shift spells, invisibility spells, nothing. The Sphynx simply isn't there. Hawke stands up to leave, wondering what all this means. Hawke looks up into the air, and whispers to no one, "I know that I made a few mistakes in my younger years. I'm not proud of the time I spent being misled by Ares. You were one of the main reasons I was able to eventually see that cult for what it was, and free myself from its yoke. Farewell, my friend, I hope that your disappearance was not caused by something I did or said." Inwardly, Hawke muses that Sphynx has once again lived up to his name, an enigma, whose motivations are unknown to all, one who comes and goes according to an unknown set of priorities. Hawke wanders over to the bar, and shakes Sylen's hand; using a well-practiced, long-ago-perfected slight-of-hand, he palms an emerald off to Sylen as he does so. "Take care of yourself, Sy. It's quite a place you've got here." And with that, Hawke steps out into the street, taking in the fresh air. He has a thirty mile walk ahead of him, out of the city, into the hills, to the well-hidden cave where the Arch of Ages touches this world.
11:06 AM Nov 14
As Hawks paused outside the tavern to adjust his gear for the long walk ahead, the sound of two ravens cawing can be heard in the the distance confirming the vision in the tankard, despite it's unlikely location. As Hawke stretches his shoulders, there is a distinctive echo like a handclap in a large empty room. Sphynx steps from thin air immediately to Hawke's left, fully garbed and ready to travel, staff in hand. The clothing has changed. The staff has changed, but the aged elf has also. "I change my mind. I have been dwelling on the past too long. I have never met these Asgardians but perhaps Odin or Tyr or Baldur could use a champion to accompany Thor's, especially Odin since we both seem to favor the staff. Let us begin to make the difference we were always meant to.
1:35 PM Nov 14
Hawke laughs, saying, "What we sometimes lack in subtlety, we make up for with sheer stubbornness and determination. You will be more than welcome in Asgard, my friend. Making a difference is what we're all about. There are those among the Aesir who believe, as I do, that our fates are not yet written, no matter what the Norns prophesy. For instance, it is said that on the day of Rangnarok, Odin will be swallowed by the Fenris Wolf, and that Thor will be swallowed by Jormundgnir. Well, if that is indeed what shall come to pass, then those monsters will have to swallow Nimbar and I first; we'll not let our lieges die before us." Hawke smiles, tapping the hilts of his swords. "I'll give that big eel a serious case of indigestion, have no doubt." Hawke talks about many other things during the day-long journey, and just as the sun is setting, you both reach the hill where the cave lies, hidden behind a copse of trees, and a moss-covered boulder. Hawke moves the boulder aside with the ease of a peasant opening a tavern door. Once inside, he closes it with the same amount of effort. Sphynx's eyes instantly adjust to the darkness, as do his magical senses. Straight ahead, in the middle of the huge cavern, invisible to the naked eye, stands the Arch of Ages, awaiting the command of those who would travel through it. Hawke waves his hand, and speaks: "Thron Kohs," he intones, as the gateway springs to life. Sphynx is no stranger to this arch; as the chosen of Thoth, he has knowledge of all great artifacts, and this gateway, the creation of the goddess Wee Jas, is no exception. Hawke steps through the archway without another word, into the realm of Asgard. You follow him, anxious to find out what has caused such concern among the Asgardians as to warrant this impromptu call to service.
3:44 PM Nov 15
You both appear in a large cave, similar to the one you entered through; the archway is here, as well. As you step out of the mouth of the cave, you see a small, switch-back path, leading down the side of an enormous mountain. This definitely isn't the small, tree-covered hill you started on. At the end of the switch-back, there is a large landing, which is not natural. The floor of the landing is made of flagstone, and it's covered with runes. In the center of the landing, you see a large, circular pool, which is filled not with liquid, but with a scintillating, prismatic form of energy. In front of the pool, stands a tall, muscular man with a red beard, holding a huge, obsidian-and-brass-ornamented horn. There is a huge, golden sword at his waist, in a quick-draw rig. Both of you, of course, recognize the god Heimdall immediately. The god nods knowingly toward both of you, and motions toward the pool. Without hesitation, you both step
into it, and you immediately find yourself in another dimension, one which looks eerily close to outer space, except that here, there is both air and gravity, and the available light, of which there is an abundance, comes from the scintillating Rainbow Bridge that you now find yourselves walking upon. You have not walked more than a dozen steps before you notice a winged figure ahead of you, flying leisurely toward your position. As it draws near, you both recognize it to be a Solar, one of the celestial beings that serve various good-aligned deities in the outer planes. This Solar is clad head to toe in sparkling, silvery chain mail armor, and carries a hammer, which hangs casually from his belt. His wings are huge, white, and feathery, like those of a huge eagle. He lands before the both of you, and bows deeply. "Greetings from The Father of Storms and Lightning," the Solar intones. "There is no need to travel further into Asgard, you must act quickly, and your task lies far from here." Hawke watches the Solar's facial expressions with interest; they betray no hint of joviality.
4:07 PM Nov 15
"Your journey shall take you next back to Oerth," the Solar continues, "you must go to the sanctuary of your friend, the monk, the one called Shokindo Chi Lan. There you will find Shokindo's teacher, Luis. You will need his help in this endeavor. He sees things that even champions such as yourselves cannot. He is wise in the ways of life and renewal, in a way which shall prove crucial to the completion of your task. Go to him now, he is already thinking of contacting you. Return to the cavern, and use the archway, it is the most expedient way to reach the Prime. After that, you can teleport normally." and with that, the Solar takes flight once more, headed back the way he came, back to Asgard. Hawke turns to Sphynx, and says, "This is strange. The only reason to bring us all the way here, to the Rainbow Bridge, rather than sending a message via magic, is because my liege is worried that the message will be intercepted. Apparently, whatever is going on, my liege feels that it should be kept as close to the chest as possible. And he obviously believes that he himself is being watched, hence the reason he did not offer us the hospitality of his castle." The both of you quickly make your way back to the arch, and another simple command from Hawke and you both find yourselves in a very familiar cave, the cave on Oerth, in the Mounds of Dawn, where the both of you once vanquished the fiend known as Raum. Sphynx, you are the first to notice what appear to be a single set of human footprints, leading away from the archway, toward the mouth of the cave (i.e., toward the outdoors.) Hawke, not having noticed the footprints, is in the process of casting "Teleport Without Error," which will transport the both of you some 850 miles away from here, to Shokindo's monastery...
1:48 PM Nov 19
Sphynx touches Hawke's elbow. (Obviously he can't reach his shoulder.) It is a simple gesture, but it is enough. "Hold that thought. I don't think a set of footprints should have preceded our entry here. Let me see if I can find any residual aura."
2:12 PM Nov 19
Hawke stops casting, and looks where you've indicated. "Very strange," he says. Hawke watches with interest as Sphynx investigates. Sphynx, you notice that the footprints seem to be made by a person of medium height and build, but there is something weird about them. In the recesses, you find bits of rotten flesh. This would normally be indicative of some sort of undead, perhaps a zombie. However, these footprints do not have the lumbering gait (which results from slow and awkward movements) that is typical of undead. The gait is completely normal-looking, and the creature that made these prints was walking quickly and with purpose.
9:08 AM Nov 20
One other thing: After looking at the footprints, and then back at the archway, Hawke says that whatever made the footprints appeared next to the archway, and then started walking away. The creature did NOT actually come THROUGH the archway. Doing so would have left a residual trace that other archway users can detect. Sphynx, after careful consideration, you believe that Hawke is correct. In fact, the traces of magic that linger where the footprints begin are more like those from the use of a Mirror of Mental Prowess, a magic item of considerably LESS power than the archway.
11:44 AM Nov 21
"Perhaps we should follow the prints for a bit."
12:02 AM Dec 10
The tracks are easy to follow inside the cave, but as soon as you get to the cave entrance, two things spoil your good mood; the ground beyond is mountainous hard rock, and the sun is in the process of setting. Neither of you are inept, per se, but then again, neither of you are trained trackers, either. Hawke mumbles something about Nimbar never being around when you need him, and gets a frustrated look on his face. Sphynx, as Hawke continues to grumble, a feeling of peace comes over you, and you realize that things are not as bad as they seem; the cave is in the side of a narrow crevasse that cuts through the Mounds of Dawn like a snake winding its way through the grass. There are only two ways to go, north, or south; you are on the Prime Material plane, so splitting up would not be especially dangerous. Or, you could stay together, and just pick a direction. Or you could resort to spells; in any case, you feel that Hawke is perhaps over-reacting a bit. The terrain is a minor setback, nothing more. In fact, Sphynx, you realize with some degree of joviality that you still have a telepathic link with Nimbar. You haven't used the link in years, but the magic still touches you, and you know without a doubt that it would still work, should you choose to use it. And as you both know, Nimbar is a skilled tracker. The choice of how to proceed lies with you, since Hawke seems to be lost in a fit of self-deprecation.
12:14 AM Dec 10
MEANWHILE, AT SHOKINDO'S MONASTERY: Luis, following your instincts, you step out into the chill, morning air. The cockroach has flown away, but in the direction that it has flown, you spot a creature in the air, flying toward you. At first, it appears to be a dark, spherical blot on the sky. As the blot gets closer, you recognize the type of creature: a Beholder! Reflexively, you take half a step backwards, your legs cocking themselves like a spring. Your hand waits patiently at the top of your shoulder, ready to draw Blue Destiny from its sheath; but the need never comes. As the creature comes into close proximity, you realize that it is Vendrok, the former butler of Hawke's castle. You know that Hawke had paid Vendrok handsomely to guard his castle, but that some time ago, Hawke released him of his obligation, so that Vendrok could pursue his own interests. Now, from time to time, Vendrok was known to show up with bits of news. And apparently, this was one of those times, although it was the first occasion that Vendrok had chosen to visit the monastery. Usually, he chose to visit The Hold of Five instead. Nevertheless, here he was. As Vendrok comes to within speaking distance, he begins talking immediately, "Hello, Master Luis. Perhaps you've heard, hmmm? About the disturbance? I've traced it to its source of course, no one can scry like I can. The creature is wreaking havoc in the Mounds of Dawn. And he's already destroyed a Dwarven redoubt."
12:22 AM Dec 10
MEANWHILE IN THE CITY OF SIGIL: Dengar, when you see the coin, the first thing that pops into your mind for the initials SCL is the name of your trusted friend and ally, "Shokindo Chi Lan." You pause for a moment, reaching out with your senses, and then you know. That feeling in your gut is there, and it's never wrong. "Yeah, those are Shokindo's initials. My hunches are never wrong. Maybe we should pay him a visit." Feridan, you trust Dengar implicitly, but you also know for a fact that some of his hunches have led to wild goose chases in the past. Still, it does make sense. S C L can't stand for very many things other than that. The question is, why didn't he just come to Sigil personally?
12:25 AM Dec 10
MEANWHILE ON THE GOOD SHIP STARWAVE: (OUT OF CHARACTER): Pete, since you haven't responded at all, I'm going to let the ship kind of float along in Limbo. If you don't join us for this adventure, perhaps you can join us at some future time, for some other exciting voyage. Until I know for sure what your intentions are, you are simply "on your way to Sigil."
2:04 PM Dec 11
(OUT OF CHARACTER): By the way, MacConnell, in case you're wondering what I'm talking about, we did the telepathic link thing WAY back in the day, the last time we played the epic characters circa 2004 or so. I made note of it on the bottom of both Hawke's and Nimbar's character sheets. It says: "Roleplaying Note: Sphynx has a permanent RARY'S TELEPATHIC BOND with Tellerian Hawke, Nimbar The Watcher, Shatho, Zaelostrimyron, and Sai'Lin; Sphynx can sever these links @ will if so desired."
4:44 PM Dec 11
Luis seeing and realizing finally that it is Vendrok, relaxes and speaks. " Yes Vendrok I have seen the damage that this unknown creature has done!" " Have you seen or spoken to Master Hawke?"
6:33 PM Dec 11
"No, no. He's hard to track down, always on the move, yes. Hard to track down. Can't risk a sending, no, no. Too risky for an omen this serious. Yes, too risky." Vendrok closes his central eye in deep concentration, the smaller eyestalks waving wildly with activity. "Yes, an idea is coming. Master Feridan, Master Dengar, they need to be here. They're in Sigil, yes, the City of the Pained One. My reach extends to that place. Would you like me to bring them here?" Without waiting for a response, Vendrok opens his central eye, along with his mouth. A deep rumble comes from inside the creature, resulting in an enormously loud and smelly burp! A small, brass key flies through the air, and lands with a TING-PING-PING-TING at your feet. "That's their hotel key, yes, yes. Pick it up, and speak the name of Feridan!" And with that, the beholder turns, and begins to fly away in the direction he came, without so much as a "by-your-leave."
12:17 PM Dec 12
Sphynx states, "Even with the rocky terrain we may be able to deduce logically the direction of our predecessor, if you know the destination of these two options of path. I can also take a few minutes to mentally ask Nimbar or Zaelostrymiran for tracking advice, since their knowledge of such far exceeds mine. A point of concern though, while necromancy is the modus operundus of the ancient Nubian heirarchy, it is almost unknown to the Asgardians. The only reference I know is the half-live/half-dead Hel, but I forget her particular ordeal that caused the situation."
4:19 PM Dec 12
Hawke calms down a bit, and focuses on what you have said. "North leads to the Cliffs of Derrin, and Lake Quag; that's about half-a-day's journey. To the south, in about one-and-a-half days, you'll run into the eastern end of the Dwarven Hills." Hawke ponders your other words for a bit, and says in return, "Nimbar knows more about Necromancy than I do; he and I both studied under the great Kelvin Kvar, as you already know, but Nimbar focused more on lore and true Wizardry than I; I was always more of an Elementalist, seeking to turn fire and lightning against my enemies. Nimbar had more of a head for mysticism, including Necromancy. But whereas many mages who practice it become obsessed with immortality, and end up becoming undead themselves (i.e., Liches,) Nimbar was more obsessed with protecting himself and others AGAINST Necromantic charms. You are right about Hel, she is the mother of Necromancy and the Undead. She is the child of Loki, and has inherited his taste for the profane. Asgardians are very familiar with the ways of Necromancy, they just don't have much of a use for it. Most native-born Asgardians won't use Necromantic spells at all. My own, personal knowledge of the art focuses on the manipulation of the body BEFORE death; I must admit, I have used the HORRID WILTING spell to drain the lifeblood of many a foe, although I have always reserved it for the truly evil and profane of my enemies; demons, devils, and the like. My knowledge of the body AFTER death is much more rudimentary. Therefore, I will defer to your knowledge in that matter."
2:01 PM Dec 16
Sphynx scans he area for residues of magic. Using his unmatched knowledge of the undead, he also goes back to further examine the remains left in the prints. He says to Hawke as he returns to the prints, "I have considerably amended my old ways, but I was once the foremost expert on necromancy, and I have a very good memory."
8:37 PM Dec 16
Feridan tells Dengar "Don't you find it strange he would reach out to us this way. I'm beginning to worry he may be in trouble. Let's head back to the Barony and pay his monastery a visit. It's been awhile since we checked up on things there anyway."
4:56 PM Dec 30
Luis bends down and quickly scoops up the key and speaks out loud " Feridan!"
1:54 PM Jan 1
Sphynx, after re-examining the footprints, you are positive that what you are looking at is either a zombie or a ghoul, and there are even traces of magic in it, but not the kind you would expect; with an undead creature, you would expect to see traces of negative energy, associated with the process of animating a dead being; however, what you find instead are traces positive energy, and moreover, those traces seem to be unstable, and in a state of decay, almost as if the process had been reversed. Instead of negative energy being infused into dead matter in order to prevent decay, it's as if a once-living being had been immersed in so much positive energy that it (at first) overloaded the being's body and killed the being, and (afterwards) had the effect of animating the being, while at the same time, causing the being's body to slowly decay into nothingness, i.e., causing the being to slowly become pure energy. Until this moment, you had never considered such a possibility, but it seems to be the only explanation that makes any sense. Now, the question which remains, is: What sort of phenomenon could have caused such a transformation? You suspect a magical experiment gone horribly wrong...
2:06 PM Jan 1
Luis, as you speak the name of Feridan, the key suddenly grows quite warm in your hand, and a glowing, red doorway appears in front of you. On the other side, turning toward you as if breaking off a conversation, you notice Feridan and Dengar staring at you incredulously, as if they had just mentioned your name. Feridan smiles, and steps through the doorway. Dengar rises from his chair, and begins moving toward the doorway as well. Luis and Feridan, both of you notice something amiss as this is happening. Dengar is moving toward the gateway, and has failed to see a figure materialize behind him, as if from a TELEPORT spell. The figure lunges toward Dengar, as if it intends to prevent him from stepping through the doorway...
2:07 PM Jan 1
OOC: I need Luis, Feridan, and Dengar (Jason, Dusty, and Bryan) to roll initiative.
12:36 PM Jan 6
"No sense dallying forever. Let's go North."
3:02 PM Jan 9
OOC: Init: (1d20+20).....I got a 35
2:06 PM Jan 13
OOC: 1d20+17 = 24
8:45 AM Jan 14
It takes you 9 uneventful hours of steady walking to wind your way through the crevasse, and reach the precipice; it's a straight drop down to the rocky shores of Lake Quag, some 500 or so feet below. On the lake, you can see 3 ships: 1 frigate, and two pleasure craft. Each is headed in a different direction. The wind howls through the crevasse, bringing you a light blast of warm, humid air from the immense freshwater lake. There are no tracks here, nor are there any other signs that anyone has preceded your arrival here. Hawke mutters the command word for his Tunic's flying ability, and steps off the edge of the cliff. He hovers in place for a moment, and then begins to slowly descend. He only descends about 10 meters before calling up, "There is a cave down here, however, unless our quarry can fly as we can, there's no good way to climb down to it. The cliff face is too smooth."
4:43 PM Jan 15
(OUT OF CHARACTER): Hey MacConnell, I have been looking at Sphynx's stats, and I have decided that from what I remember of him in the "old days," he is under-powered. Therefore, I took the liberty of re-vamping him completely, to put him at the proper power level (i.e. a slightly more powerful wizard than Nimbar.) Also, I decided that the "unknown half" of your lineage could best be explained by being Half LeShay. The LeShay are albino, and elf-like, and are a long-lived race. Hope you don't mind, but I basically made Sphynx Half LeShay / Half Gray Elf. I also took away his chosen status, since you stated you'd rather not be tied down to serving one deity. Anyway, this version is more powerful than the last, and I think it is the truest representation of your character concept that D&D 3rd Edition is capable of rendering. His stats are posted in the NPC section. The PDF version works best for online viewing. Enjoy!
8:04 PM Jan 16
OOC: Dengar's Initiative 1d20+7=16
8:41 PM Jan 16
OOC: Mystery Guest #1 = 26 Init / Mystery Guest #2 = 36 Init. So Initiative Order = Mystery guest 2, then Luis, then mystery guest 1, then Feridan, then Dengar. More details soon to come.
9:11 PM Jan 16
OOC: Dengar needs to make a Strength check (1d20 + Str bonus)
OOC: Target DC: 26.
OOC: Roll 1d20+6=12
12:25 PM Jan 18
As usual, Dengar, your life is a charmed one; sometimes, it seems, failure is just as fortuitous as success; and this is certainly one of those times. You hear a whoosh, the sound of fabric folding and unfolding rapidly, like a flag in a strong breeze. The sound is only momentary, and it is followed by a "thud," and a crisp, heavy impact in the exact center of the backside of your chestplate. As you feel yourself forcibly launched forward through the open portal, you realize, in the space of a mere instant, that someone has kicked you. Feridan, as the lunging figure comes fully into view, you recognize it instantly as demonic; a Balor, but obviously using reduction magic to make itself fit the human-sized room's dimensions. As the Balor lunges for Dengar, a blurry figure leaps from elsewhere in the room, and kicks Dengar through the open portal. Dengar lands face down in front of you, uninjured save for his pride; the figure lands in the exact spot that Dengar stood just a moment before, blocking the portal, with his back to you and Luis. Even before you hear the familiar, twin "schings" of Sun & Moon leaving their scabbards, you recognize the colorful shirt of their owner. Jynx Maylosu has arrived. OOC: Luis, it's your turn. If you want to enter the portal, you will need to make a Tumble check DC 25 to get past Jynx without running into him.
10:11 AM Jan 20
OOC: Luis, go ahead and roll your attack, and let me know what AC you hit. Also, you caught the Balor flat-footed, so if you hit, add your sneak attack damage (+2d6) to the mix.
10:26 AM Jan 21
OOC: attack...1d20+54 (10+54=64).....
10:38 AM Jan 21
The Balor yelps in surprise, as Blue Destiny cleaves into his hardened flesh. (OOC Note: Luis: Roll damage, please. Don't forget sneak attack. Total damage should be 1d10+2d6+31 if I remember correctly. ) Apparently, he is not used to being cut. His eyes momentarily widen in alarm, and you can almost hear him mentally questioning his chosen plan of attack. After a momentary disorientation, his face once again assumes its stern, menacing countenance.
4:11 PM Jan 21
OOC: ok....1d10+31 plus 2d6 ( 5+31+3+2=41)
8:41 AM Jan 22
Luis, your sword makes a small, but nasty cut in the demon's flesh. However, he does not seem focused on you; turning his back on you, he rushes forward, seemingly intent on getting through the portal. You can see the wound already beginning to heal as he does so. OOC Note: You get an attack of opportunity on the Balor as he leaves your threatened square. Roll an attack at your highest number, and let me know what AC you hit. I am going to go ahead and write out what happens next, because unless you kill him with your next blow, he is going to follow the same course of action.
8:55 AM Jan 22
The Balor bull rushes Jynx; as he enters Jynx's threatened area, Jynx scores a critical hit upon him with Moon, slashing him across the face for 50 pts. of damage. The demon gives a battle cry, and pushes Jynx backwards, forcing him 2 squares back, through the portal. The Balor continues his forward momentum, also stepping through the portal, and as he attempts to continue moving past Jynx toward the still-prone Dengar, Jynx tags him again, this time with Sun, inflicting 23 points of damage, and rending for another 34 points of damage. The Balor comes to a halt 2 squares behind Jynx, in the square directly in front of Dengar, and directly adjacent to Feridan (to Feridan's left.) It is now Feridan's turn; conviently enough, the demon has presented himself in such a fashion as to be within range of Feridan's full attack array. Now the fun begins.
9:35 AM Jan 22
OOC: One last thing: Anyone on the Prime Material Plane with Knowledge (The Planes) needs to roll a skill check (1d20 + your total score) against a DC of 65. This goes for Hawke, Nimbar, Sphynx, and any other powerful NPC on the Prime. (I will be rolling for the NPCs, of course, ha ha.)
OOC: Hawke = Failed. Nimbar = Success. Sphynx, you need to make the roll and post the result. NPCs # 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 = Fail, Fail, Success, Fail, Success. (Two powerful people out there just learned something!)
3:02 PM Jan 22
OOC: attack of opportunity....1d20+52.....(11+52=63)....if I hit then.....1d10+31....(9+31=40).....
4:05 PM Jan 22
Now that the Balor is not off his guard, you find that he is difficult to catch with a good blow. Blue Destiny careens off of his shoulder, as he twists his body away from you, and continues onward. (You missed---just barely.)
4:40 PM Jan 22
OUT OF CHARACTER: about a month and a half ago, I met a really cool guy on the Facebook D&D group, and I have been talking to him since then about game mechanics, etc. Today, I decided to invite him to play in our game. He will be taking over Jynx. Let's all welcome him, and make him feel at home.
12:04 PM Jan 23
OOC: Thanks for the stats update. Sphynx walks over the cliff facing to the cave using the spider climb ability of his right boot. "Something pique your attention, here, Hawke"?
4:39 PM Jan 23
Hawke says, "Nah, I doubt the creature could have made it down here. There's an abandoned bird nest near the mouth of the cave, which looks undisturbed for some time. I think we should head south. Let's save ourselves the nine hour hike and teleport back to the cave mouth, and then fly straight south from there. We'll fly close to the ground to avoid attracting attention. Say, 10 meters off the ground?
7:47 PM Jan 23
Feridan snaps his fingers and Harvest Moon appears in his hands, and to the Balor says "You've made a huge mistake"
12:00 PM Jan 24
Feridan, your first hit catches the Balor off-balance, and rips a sizable gash out of the demon's flesh. Your second hit, coming swiftly behind the first, lands exactly where you intended, however, as luck would have it, the demon's thick hide resists the blade of your scythe. The balor fends off your last two attacks, having recovered his balance, and through a series of lucky circumstances. However, you now have the balor's attention, having hurt him so badly with a single blow. OOC: It is now Dengar's turn; standing up won't provoke an attack of opportunity, but it will cost you your complete move action.
11:47 AM Jan 26
OOC: MacConnell, check your Gmail for the result of your roll.
2:21 PM Jan 27
Sphynx balks, standing straight out from the cliff face and cocks his head to the left. "Change of plans, Hawke. Someone just gated in a lower planes creature. I felt the pulse. Nimbar is currently stating, telepathically, that you know the location. We need to teleport. Now!"
5:38 PM Jan 27
Sphynx: Hawke waves his hands, and begins to trace arcs of magical energy through the air in a complex variety of patterns and symbols. Fully 90% of them are familiar to you, the last 10% dealing with location, a set of very specific symbols for the monastery. (OOC: If you'd like to memorize the symbols, so that you can teleport to the monastery in the future, make a spellcraft check, DC: 50... Nevermind, you can't fail that roll, lol. You may choose to memorize the symbols, if you wish.) Seconds later, Hawke evokes the power of the symbols that he has traced, and both you and he are teleported across this world in the blink of an eye. You appear in an open courtyard, which rests upon a high, mountain top. Behind you, the courtyard gate allows egress to the trail that winds back down the mountain. In front of you, a demonic looking, human-sized figure is staring down a group of people that he probably shouldn't be; Feridan, Dengar, Jynx, and Luis. Directly in front of you, beyond the melee, the double doors to the monastery are ajar; to your right, there is an open, inter-planar archway which leads to what appears to be an empty hotel suite. The gate is keyed, which is why you did not detect it when it opened. OOC: Sphynx, both you and Hawke appear at the exact same instant as Dengar's turn, at the very end of the first combat round. Dengar will take his turn, as per initiative. Then, you and Hawke will finish appearing. (i.e., your turn this round is taken up by being teleported.) Then you and Hawke must roll initiative, to see when you can act in the coming round.
OOC: MacConnell, initiative is on the first page of your character sheet, near the top. It is the first thing that is highlighted in grey. Your initiative is 1d20+21, so 14 = 35. You have tied with Hawke and Luis. Your Dex is higher than both Hawke and Luis. Thus, at 35, you go, then Hawke, then Luis. Final initiative order = Jynx, Sphynx, Hawke, Luis, Balor, Feridan, and Dengar.
7:26 PM Feb 4
Dengar will stand up and take a step away from the Balor, moving away from the portal.
10:16 PM Feb 4
Jynx takes a step to re-position himself to attack the demonic human.
10:21 AM Feb 5
Jynx spins around on one heel, taking half a step toward the sized-down demon, before tearing into him with unbridled fury. Your opponent seems almost confused, while at the same time, enraged, as you continue to land blow after blow against him; his thick skin absorbs some of the punishment, and his amazing agility helps a little as well, but with his attention divided between you and Feridan, simple attrition begins to take its toll, and your swords deliver several devastating wounds to the stout demon, whose clothes are now little more than a conglomeration of bloody rags. Your opponent looks as if he had fallen into a meat grinder. And yet, to the amazement of all, he is still standing. OOC: Sphynx, you're up next.
2:38 PM Feb 8
Sphynx quickly follows up Jynx's attacks with a small, yet effective light-show; with the grace of a master pianist, Sphynx's fingers weave a complex, and lightning fast, tapestry of arcana that few in this world could hope to match. A look of surprise crosses the Elven wizard's face, when he realizes that the demon's magical protections require better-than-average runic transfigurations in order to penetrate; however, it's not even enough to make him miss a beat. Sphynx compensates slightly, and his spells strike true; dozens of light shards leave his fingertips, and slam into the demon, causing him intense pain. Sphynx looks on without any outward sign of emotion, as if he were an herbalist examining a new species of plant. His gaze toward the demon is cold and clinical, analyzing every reaction, every minute aspect of the demon's reactive physiology. OOC: Sphynx, you successfully break his resistance with all 3 spells. You inflict 290 points damage, total. COMBAT NOTE: Total so far: 900 points even, with an offset of Fast Healing x1.
3:07 PM Feb 8
Almost the instant that the last light shard slams into the demon, Hawke arrives in the thick of the fray, having charged the demon with the speed and ferocity of an angry bull. The characteristic "SCRREECCHH" of the Hawke Blade fills the air, followed by the booming thunderclap of its twin sword, Thunderstrike. Hawke still finds it difficult to penetrate the demon's hide, and the demon even manages to twist away from some of the attacks as well; however, the three blows that do land are intensely effective, spilling even more blood upon the ground of this normally peaceful sanctuary. OOC: Hawke's total damage: 219, total so far: 1,119 with an offset of Fast Healing x1. Luis, it's your turn. The demon is surrounded by opponents; Hawke, Jynx, and Feridan have arranged themselves in such a way as to prevent him from reaching Dengar, and you are right there as well, helping to cut him off from his intended prey.
5:20 PM Feb 8
Luis, as you begin your attack, you notice a quizzical look on Hawke's face.
2:53 PM Feb 9
Luis noticing Hawke's face as he moves in to strike.....1d20+52 (14+52=66) 1d20+49 (8+49=57) 1d20+46 (7+46=53) 1d20+43 (19 critical+43=62)1d20+40 (16+40=56).....based on his AC looks like I only hit once on my first strike......damage 1d10+31 (9+31=40)
5:27 PM Feb 9
As Luis lands his last blow, the beaten and battered demon lets out a fierce war cry. As he does so, more of his wounds begin to close, as his healing factor once again kicks in. He stands facing Luis, and grins wryly, as he lets his disguise go; instantly, the demon grows to his full height of 12 feet, spreading his now-unfurled bat wings to their full extension. As the wings unfurl, his whip and his massive sword appear in either hand. He speaks a single word in an ancient language, and a blue aura surrounds him. Then he raises his sword aloft, swearing an oath: "Nixeldraxx does NOT fail his assigned duties! Now witness his TRUE POWER!"... and with that, every remaining wound, cut, scratch, and bruise on his body disappear, as the clouds overhead darken, and lightning fills the sky. ...........[OOC: Feridan, it's your turn.]
8:32 PM Feb 9
Feridan, you re-open his skin with a grim determination that still gives the monster pause. OOC: Ok, Dengar's turn...
9:26 PM Feb 9
Dengar calls out to Rudd, asking for her grace. OOC: cast Time Stop
11:56 AM Feb 10
Jynx will avoid going into the Time Stop via his stowaway item.
3:30 PM Feb 24
Ok, so everyone who wasn't in the Time Stop effect sees the following: Dengar waves his hands, and speaks several cryptic words. The entire world seems to "blink" in and out of phase for just a split second; then a shower of mystical energy erupts in several different directions at once, as multiple spells detonate simultaneously. Some of the spells hit the Balor; the Balor's right hand ring, which was previously glowing, stops doing so. The Balor's left hand ring, which was also glowing, remains so. [Hawke failed to affect the left hand ring.] Ethereal energy swirls around the Balor, burning him over and over and he appears to be on fire, but not in the usual way. Yellow flames lick at the Balor's body, causing him intense discomfort. His skin takes on a sunken, desiccated appearance as two Horrid Wilting spells do their work. Sphynx, you feel a surge of energy rush over you, as the demon's essence flows into you, strengthening and revitalizing you. The Balor's body flames, which were the target of Sphynx's last spell, remain unaffected.
3:38 PM Feb 24
OOC: Jynx, it's your turn. You are still flanking the Balor (+2 to hit, add sneak attack) and you are now Hasted (1 extra attack, and a +4 AC bonus); you have a +5 morale bonus to hit, damage, saves, and skill checks. Also, you made your spot check, and happen to notice that one of the Balor's rings is no longer glowing.
11:32 PM Feb 26
As the last energies of the storm of spells slams into Nixeldraxx, Jynx begins his assault anew, with a renewed fury, coupled with a few select enchantments which now envelop him, allowing him to deal to his opponent even more punishment than his previous efforts were capable of. His eyes fixed on those of the Balor, Jynx drives his opponent backward, rending his flesh in numerous places, as the demon twists and turns, trying to avoid the attacks, but moving noticeably slower than before. Still, the Balor's arrogance remains unchecked: "You whelps surprise me with your resilience!" he roars.
2:09 PM Mar 12
Sphynx fixes his gaze upon the open portal, and utters a single word, of unknown origin. Instantly, the portal closes, and the key (which has been laying on the ground the whole time, since Luis dropped it in order to draw his weapon) glows a bright blue, and disappears. With another word, an elder Earth Elemental suddenly appears, towering over the entire group at a height of 40 feet. The elemental reaches down and grabs the Balor; but to your surprise, the Balor manages to slip out of the elemental's massive grip just before it can start to crush him. You utter a final invocation, smashing through the Balor's spell resistance, and enveloping him in a sticky, acid bath. The Balor eyes you with avarice as your spell burns his skin.
4:10 PM Mar 12
In an unexpected move, Hawke sheathes his swords, and utters the words to a powerful spell; suddenly, a massive, blue fist appears above the Balor, and smashes down onto his head with unbridled fury; the spell pierces the demon's spell resistance, and a sickening CRUNCH is heard as it slams down onto the demon's head. Blood trickles out of the demon's left ear, but he remains standing. Hawke's last action is to look upward, saying "Yes, My Liege!" to the empty air, and then to look toward the group, saying "Sorry, guys, I'll be back soon!" as he quickly intones a teleport spell, and disappears from view.
OOC: Luis, it's your turn.
NOTE: The preceding text has had the combat notes (die rolls, questions, etc.) largely omitted
END OF EPIC CAMPAIGN LOG PART ONE.