D&D 5E (IC) Scourge of Daggerford

FitzTheRuke

Legend
NEXIVM7

N7 rebooted standing in the middle of Julkoun's town square. His sudden movement after days of inactivity startled the locals, who scattered before him. He immediately began to help wherever he could be useful, carrying lumber and holding up a wagon while its wheel was replaced. After a few days of doing useful odd-jobs, just when the Julkounians had grown used to his help, he calculated that he would like to build some things for himself. The best tools and parts were not in Julkoun - they were in Gwaereth's old laboratory in Daggerford.

Without a word, N7 stopped what he was doing in Julkoun, and he marched out one of the town's gates, surprising Lady Morwen's guards. Unlike the others, who had taken the road or the river, N7 followed the exact path they had taken to get to Julkoun (in reverse) - through the Laughing Hollow and the southern foothills of Mount Illefarn. He passed by the watchtower that overlooked the old switchback-road, and again it was filled with orcs. With no one to protect but himself, N7 walked right past. The orcs hunkered down and took a few shots at him with stone-launching crossbows, but they did minimal structural damage as he passed.

N7 returned to the Ducal Castle, and to Gwaereth's Laboratory. Trista, the aging court mage was there, and she congratulated N7 on his victory in Julkoun and then stayed out of his way as he sent her servant to procure any materials that he needed that were not already there. He made some new armaments, and a new orb.

At night, because Trista had asked him to stop banging away in the laboratory (her rooms were nearby), he scoured the Library for any information about where he had been built. He knew he would recognise it when he saw it, either in a drawing, or named on a map, but he could not bring it to mind. Nor could he find any reference in Gwaereth's Library. The information was simply not here.

Duke Maldwyn learned that N7 had returned to his castle, and he demanded that the accomplished Shield Guardian be made his personal bodyguard. With nothing more to be done at the time, N7 agreed, and he stood vigilantly in the court hall as various tedious matters were attended to. N7's sensors perked up as various reports came in from Scoutmaster Kelson Darktreader and his men:

Orcs were amassing in the north, having taken over the ruins of Harpshield Castle. Some new chief had aligned three orcish tribes, and they had already tried once (and had been repelled) to assault the Floshin Estate (an elvish manor house belonging to Sir Isteval's elf friend Darfin Floshin, who was also Kelson's uncle.) They would, perhaps, return in greater numbers.

Further north, in the Ardeep Forest, where Waterdhavian nobles held hunting lodges, Gnolls had taken a wealthy hunting party prisoner. They had demanded a ransom, (a strange thing for Gnolls to do) and when the noble family's agents had tried to pay it, the Gnolls took the money, and killed the agents (a less strange thing for Gnolls to do). The family feared that the Gnolls had killed the prisoners as well, but no-one knew for sure.

A tribe of lizardfolk had been spotted near Rock Tower, carrying metal swords and wearing helmets. Lizardfolk were fierce, but usually primitive, and easily kept in check by occasional raids into the Lizard Marsh as a show of force. If the lizardfolk were properly arming and training an army, it could be very bad for the Duke's lands near Cromm's Hold and the hamlets that were nominally under his protection.

All of these reports did nothing to make the Duke choose to send aid. Instead, in every case, he chose to pull back support to Daggerford. To double the city watch and to close the city gates, searching everyone who comes or goes. The Duke grew increasingly paranoid, believing that Thayan Wizards were behind it all, and that they would send shapeshifting undead assassins to kill him while he slept - which he did very little.
 

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KahlessNestor

Adventurer
Angis Honack
Daggerford
Morning
Round 0

Angis snorted awake in a puddle of his own drool, lying on the floor of the basement in the Laughing Cow, where he held rooms on the second floor. He straightened his beard and belched, looking at the kegs of ale. He picked up a mug and took a sample from one of the ales he was brewing, tasting it. He’d added a bit of Dandin’s magic apples to this brew and tested the flavor, smacking his lips. Not bad.

Angis stomped up to the common room for breakfast, sitting in his usual corner alone, head down, clearly not wishing to be disturbed. But he did listen to the townsfolk talk about orcs and gnolls and lizardfolk, and the Duke’s seeming insanity in the face of the threats he should be confronting.

Finishing his morning ale, Angis went out, blinking in the too bright sun, his head pounding. He stalked off to find Tommi, nearly running into Sherlen on her way out of Tommi’s place, still tucking in her tunic and straightening her hair. The young woman gave the bedraggled, ugly dwarf an embarrassed look, as if being caught out being naughty, and hurried off to the barracks.

Angis sighed and pounded on the door. “Tommi! Get yer trousers back on!” the dwarf bellowed, not much caring if Tommi’s mother Jin heard of the boy’s exploits. About time he became a man, though he needed some learnin’ on just what that would mean if he was going to be doing a man’s work with a woman like Sherlen.

Save:
Move:
Free Object Interaction:
Action:
Bonus Action:
Horde Breaker:
Reaction: Absorb Elements or Opportunity Attack
Conditions:
Concentration:
Inspiration:

Initiative: +1
Perception: +4
Speed: 25
AC: 14
HP: 40/40 HD: 4/4d10+2

Bolts: 13
Bolts used:
Handaxes: 12/12

Spells
1) 3/3 Absorb Elements, Cure Wounds, Hunter’s Mark
4/4 Boon of the Elk. Can cast Knock four times (without the loud sound) as an Action. Until he uses the last one, non-good aligned Fey count among his Favoured Enemies.


Tommi - human rogue urban bounty hunter
Dandin - halfling bard guild merchant
Enseth - warforged war cleric shield guardian
Angis Honack - dwarven ranger outlander merchant
Drui Holderhock - dwarven cleric of Tempus soldier
Titus - human Waterdhavian noble fighter
 

Fradak

Explorer
Concerning the Duke's mental health, the permanent presence of Nexivm7 as a body guard doesn't really helped. His implacable logic only added more layers to his paranoia.

"As you obviously need some advice in such situation, I'll rise my honesty parameter to 95. I learned that absolute honesty isn't always the most diplomatic nor the safest form of communication with emotional beings.
Here are my calculations: The Red Wizards are behind all of this. I could demonstrate this assertion but it will be long. Would you like to know more?
Yes? How extraordinary, someone civilized!

It's very simple, even for a standard human being like you.
Considering that Master Gwaereth the Gray has predicted..."


A few minutes later:

"Following a simple and elementary logic, an obvious conclusion can be drawn: Thayans are coming. A statement that must be neither called into question nor compromised.
But don't worry, you'll be safe with me. I'm the best of my series."
 
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FitzTheRuke

Legend
Titus & Ashfell

The Titan paused as if considering Titus' question, and its image shrank slightly before returning to its full grandeur. Sing-Axe replied, "I shall not ask you to betray your companions. In fact, you may wish to recruit them to our cause. Just over a century ago, I was banished to another plane by my enemies, and I am striving to return to the mortal realm. When the time comes, I will ask you to aid my other agents in securing my return. Until then, you may practice using my gifts in any way you wish."

When the ritual ended, Ashfell and Titus shared a look of awe mixed with concern. Ashfell said, "That was better than I expected, but I don't know. I do not trust that he is all that he appears. I will do more research when I can to study his claims, and to see if I can find any references to this Sing-Axe."

Titus agreed that he did not fully trust the Titan, but he couldn't help but feel excited by the prospect of gaining even a fraction of the immortal's might. He could help his friends without the fear of death he had felt every time he had fallen in battle. Already, his scars were fading away.

He caught up with Dandin as the modified river-boats were preparing to depart, and he spent much of the voyage back to Daggerford looking out to sea, lost in thought.
 

tglassy

Adventurer
Titus considered the deal the Titan was offering. He did not trust it. He felt it was not what it said it was. But it was offering power. And it would not have him betray his companions. Was there anything else that would prevent him from wanting to learn this power?

No.

"I accept your terms. I will serve, insofar as I am not asked to betray my companions or my people. And in exchange, I will learn your secrets."

Titus thanked his uncle, and left the Library, heading home.

On the sea headed home, he spent much of the time looking out over the dark ocean. A dark ocean that was as bright as day to him, but with no glare of sunlight on the water to block his vision. The first night, when he finally retired to his room, he looked in the mirror provided and noticed something strange.

His eyes had changed color. His eyes had always been blue, and they still were, but the left eye was now a deep, dark, shadowy blue. It was almost black.

The Right eye was the color of the sky, bright and a stark difference to his left. And when he blew out his candle, he noticed the brighter eye actually glowed! It was soft, one wouldn't notice it unless the light was dim and one was looking at him. But when he renewed his Vigor, as the Titan had taught him, the Bright Eye flared briefly.

He went to bed, his mind both troubled and at ease. At ease in that he now knew more than he did. Knowing always felt better than not. But troubled in that he did not know whom he had just agreed to release into the world...
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
Angis & Tommi

Angis and Tommi missed a life of adventure enough that they began to investigate the rumours that began to circulate the city. There appeared no chance to reunite the Doughty Daggerfordians - Enseth had become the Duke's bodyguard at the castle, and in spite of the reputation they had gained as heroes of Julkoun, Angis and Tommi had never been invited to court. Dandin and Titus had gone to Waterdeep, and Drui had taken to running the Shrine to Tempus. The dwarf priest had returned to discover that Darrondar Gweth (the Table of the Sword's usual worship-leader) had abandoned his post for parts unknown.

Angis and Tommi were joined by their friend Lionel Hardcheese, who was still fascinated by the idea of adventuring, even though he had been too fearful to join the expedition to Julkoun. The victory there made him regret his decision, and he was toying with the idea of joining his friends on their new endeavour, if only to escape his overbearing mother.

The three Daggerfordians had knocked at Sir Isteval's door. They knew that the old Knight of Cormyr sponsored adventurers (he'd given them 200 gold each to get started, not so long ago), and he would have kept the pulse of trouble in the region. But Sir Isteval was not home - his landlady informed them that he had recently set out for Firehammer Hold (a dwarven fortress north of Julkoun) to search for his friend Jekk, who had gone there for a quick trip and had not returned as expected.

This all reminded them of the dinner they'd had with the Knight and his friends. Jekk was one of them, but they had also met Sir Darfin Floshin and his sister, Salendra. The elf lord had even invited them to seek him out at his place in Daggerford, or his estate to the north. They checked his house, were the elf servant (who remembered them from the dinner as well, he had answered the door at Sir Isteval's) told them that Sir Darfin had gone to the estate to oversee its defenses. (The Floshin estate was involved in one of the city rumours - it had been assaulted by orcs.)

OOC: I'll have to return to this later, I've got to get to work... but much of the above speaks of a dinner you had, so long ago, at Sir Isteval's place, which can be found in post #280+. Feel free to re-read it, as I just did.
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
N7

As the days passed with N7 guarding Duke Maldwyn, he and the Duke spoke often of the threat of Thayan spies and assassins. Finally, one day, the Duke's paranoia regarding threats to his person was overcome by his fear of threats to his lands, and he decided that N7 and the Doughty Daggerfordians, who had foiled a Thayan's schemes in Julkoun, were best suited to uncovering threats to Daggerford, and he ordered, "Onset! You must gather your friends from your victory in Julkoun and find where the Thayans are hiding! Uncover their plots, as my scoutmaster has failed to do! I will risk their assassins while you are away."

He 'risked' their assassins by tripling his personal guard, and he had his master of coin present to N7 a thousand pieces of gold, saying "Hire mercenaries if you must, or pay your friends to join you. Spare no expense. You must put an end to this Thayan threat."

Having grown up in the Ducal Castle, Duke Maldwyn had seen N7 standing in the Wizard's study his entire life, and trusted him, seeing the Shield Guardian as part of his property. Perhaps even an old childhood toy, though the construct had never moved before recently.
 
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KahlessNestor

Adventurer
Angis Honack
Daggerford
Morning
Round 0

“Floshin Estates,” Angis muttered to Tommi. “They been ‘avin’ orc troubles there. Moight be Sir Isteval’s in a wee bit o’ trouble. An’ ‘tis on the way t’ rescuin’ those ‘ostages from the gnolls. Mebbe we should get th’others an’ check this oot.”

Marauding gnolls (Ardeep Forest, noble hunting party hostage)
Orcs in the north (Harpshield Castle, Floshin Estate)
Lizardfolk with steel weapons and armor (Rock Tower, Crom’s Hold)

Save:
Move:
Free Object Interaction:
Action:
Bonus Action:
Horde Breaker:
Reaction: Absorb Elements or Opportunity Attack
Conditions:
Concentration:
Inspiration:

Initiative: +1
Perception: +4
Speed: 25
AC: 14
HP: 40/40 HD: 4/4d10+2

Bolts: 13
Bolts used:
Handaxes: 12/12

Spells
1) 3/3 Absorb Elements, Cure Wounds, Hunter’s Mark
4/4 Boon of the Elk. Can cast Knock four times (without the loud sound) as an Action. Until he uses the last one, non-good aligned Fey count among his Favoured Enemies.


Tommi - human rogue urban bounty hunter
Dandin - halfling bard guild merchant
Enseth - warforged war cleric shield guardian
Angis Honack - dwarven ranger outlander merchant
Drui Holderhock - dwarven cleric of Tempus soldier
Titus - human Waterdhavian noble fighter
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
Dandin

Dandin had returned to Daggerford without major incident. The success of his voyage had built his confidence as a merchant and he had sold all of his return-trip merchandise quickly, and for full value. He was now in the process of repeating the operation, sending Janos to Julkoun for fleece and fabric, and negotiating with the Daggerford brewery, the riverfolk trappers, and other lucrative deals. He had taken an assistant, a cousin of Janos' named Zachare who was a charming youth with a keen mind. When Angis and Tommi found him, he wasn't sure at first if he would join them. He had thought to leave the adventuring life behind him, but he was aware that much of his negotiating strength came from the reputation he had gained as a Hero of Julkoun. Another victory such as that would prevent his reputation from waning - people had short memories, and business people shorter still. Zachare was sure that he could handle finishing securing the shipment while he waited for Janos to return from Julkoun. Dandin was certainly not needed aboard the boats, and the contacts he had made in Waterdeep were awaiting the shipments. Things would almost certainly go well without him.

Titus

On returning to Daggerford, Titus went to the Ducal Castle and to Trista's Library. He asked the aged wizard if she had ever heard of a Titan named Sing-Axe, and she had not. He searched the library, but found nothing, as he had expected. He had just begun to read a history book on Thay (left out by N7), wondering if he'd find anything there, when his Uncle the Duke arrived with the Shield Guardian.

"There you are, young man!" his Uncle exclaimed, strangely jovial, "I was just suggesting to Onset here that I wish for your group to eliminate the Thayan Threat to Daggerford! Your leadership is just what we need. Go find your friends and get out there, boy. I have all faith in you!"
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
Scourge of Daggerford: Book Two (North of Daggerford)

The following day, the Doughty Daggerfordians, reunited, left Daggerford by the Farmer's Gate and headed north along the Trail Way (named so as it was a lesser, more easterly version of the Trade Way, which also travelled northward, but was the far better built and maintained road to Waterdeep, while this one ended when it reached the Delimbyir Route - the eastward road that led to Julkoun and Secomber.) Near Daggerford the Trail Way was the frequently travelled road for local farms, but after eight miles (the halfway point between Daggerford and Enfield (a roadside hamlet), other travellers along the road became less frequent, and the Daggerfordians passed sparse scrubland dotted with the occasional isolated farmstead.

OOC: The journey to the Floshin Estate is 40 miles. You can stop at Enfield (16 miles) or more likely Newfield (a hamlet at 25 miles) or you can camp at the usual 30 miles, or press on into the evening and go all the way there. Whatever you choose, I may give out a few local rumours as you pass through the hamlets, or pass travellers along the way. Also, N7 got a thousand gold from the Duke for party expenses, so if you wanted to buy something before leaving Daggerford, feel free to ask about it.
 

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