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ZEITGEIST The affirmative action racial recruitment team of the RHC

Andrew Moreton

First we established debates about which planes to use in the eventual ritual would be put on hold until when they had most if not all of the options. as otehrwise we agreed we could spend hours on debates and then have nearly the same debate the next week. They will seek icons for any plane anyone is interested in . I also settled that a Plane/Planet could only be used once in the solar system, and that rebuilding the solar system as a Kempler Rosette or any of the other fun and interesting planatary configurations may be possible but would involve rebuilding the Ritual site. Manuel is still interested, No one else wants to mention the idea to Tinker, and they expect Manuel not to be allowed due to either time pressure or peer pressure. I anticipate an interesting debate when it is time

The group starts off in the Hall of Statues on the Forum of Lies plane, the group is fairly convinced this is all linked to Ashima-Shimtu , this is either her home plane or some aspect of her mind. (It is her home plane from the Abyss cast out into the Gyre as she has not been in residence for several thousand years). They decide they want to know where she is , some because they want to know, others because they want to make sure they can find out what she is doing, after all she wanted to come with them, was that as sinister plan? First William tries a sending spell but gets no response then they investigate every form of planar contact spell they can think of. They think Contact Other Plane may work as you can specify a specific demigod to contact, Commune would work but none of them seem to be worshippers of Ashima-Shimtu so that is not an option (Yet) and no other spell can be twisted to their ends.

Eventually they decided to save blowing miracle spells and similar until the end of the day to try and locate her, and instead explore the rest of the buildings, the next building they entered was the Hall of Pictures which was decorated with paintings and fresco's depicting the life of a demon lord as seen through her eyes. However before they could study it they had to remove the poison ivy growing over it, when Ulvaar used his plant warping ability he discovered that the Ivy had more magic resistance than a Pit fiend , he was still able to warp it. Manuel studied a sample and concluded it was one of the most deadly contact poisons he had found and a normal man who touched this stuff would almost certainly die.
It was ten times longer than it appeared and even then as the pcitures got closer to the entrance they were compressed down to smaller and smaller sizes until they were difficult or impossible to view without magnifying lenses. They proceded to look at what they could see and much of the building was a catalogue of atrocities with a section closely resembling the Kama Sutra featuring the two strange statues of vampiric devils from the staue hall, until they started to find images which seemed to match up with what the Lightning Weasel remembered of Demonocrocy histroy although as the Weasel pointed out this was a different viewpoint of these events and the differences from the Clergy's records were fascinating to a true scholar.
At the point that Triegenese appeared there seemed to be a focus on him, and all the events mentioned in his autobiography were here and accurate, after the life of Triegenese there was a bland and boring section before they started to get illustrations of random people through history as seen from the water. The last section featured the pc's extensively even before they encountered her she had been watching them , and importantly the pictures seemed accurate . Nevla seemed to spring into being at the point where she was found and rescued by Risuri troops after her captors were killed by her energy channelling, but careful perusal showed a slavery raised young eladrin woman being taken into that same building for an apparent ritual sacrifice.

They gained the impression that what Ashima-shimtu had been interested in watching were people who had been making life changind decisions, taking responsibility for actions and redemption. This made them think she may actually be seeking redemption, Nevla was already fairly certain of this. They then went back and used magnifying lenses to try and study the earliest images and they found some illustrations of a mortal life, probably a petty criminal who died in an alley in the cold. However they also noticed these images were actually in the same style as the more modern images from the life of Triegenes and later , also there were often fish hooks in the background of the images. They think (correctly) that Triegenes may have used his power to restore her souls memories of its mortal life and that may be why she is conflicted.

Finally they moved into the temple which had a large statue of Ashima-shimtu which was not overgrown, but a sacrificial alter that was heavily overgrown. While looking around Nevla noticed a small figure hiding at the back of the temple as well as an entrance to the spy tunnels. After some efforts of searching Nevla coaxed a young girl (Newt from Aliens as a visual reference) out of hiding (good hiding, it was taking perception rolls of 45+ to spot her) with the help of Manuels inexhaustible supply of Waffles and pancakes with maple syrup. The Mithril waffle iron on his armour proving its use again, as did the absurdist web allowing fresh food rather than trail rations to be carried to feed the team.
The girl called herself Newt with a lack of originality which impressed everyone, and was worried about the monster. She seemed scared of everyone else excapt Nevla , although slightly less so of William . They could not get much detail out of her but they concluded she was Ashima-Shimtu or at least the core of her soul which was why she had not been found on the Coaltongue after the crash. Nevla spent time talking with the child gettign her to believe that she did not have to face the monster alone that she and the others would help her. In the end as they departed the plane the child travelled with them. They did not fancy trying to rest here in case the sheep got hungry.

They moved on to Etheax and encountered the polite and freindly goblins, they paid attention to them and determined the goblins were in fact polite, freindly and nice not stupid and gullible. They rested here, ate and actually paid the goblins for some food , they then asked about bonding to the plane and the Goblins said of course go ahead , so they did. They are not sure if they will use it, but do think if they don't they need to move the Goblins to somewhere they are using . The adjacent planes were Housnslow and the pirates prison and they determined that they wanted to have the Coaltongue when they fought the pirate fleet so retraced their steps back past the Coaltongue and into Thrag.

Thrag they found annoying, on discoevering all the plants and animals were screaming in primal pain and despair they stopped near the edge of the plane and started trying to work out what was going on and as such they failed to notice the Mandala Beast creeping up behind them, it leapt out and savaged William before Padme and William stabbed it to death, then as they were working out why it's body had crumbled so fast a Mandala bearing Pteradactyl swooped down and savage William. Manuel blasted it with none lethal Nock gun fire and then it got stabbed until it collapsed, it still died and crumbled whereapon the Grass beneath him started trying to eat William. they stabbed the grass and then Nevla unleashed a firestorm scorching the earth all around them and burning the Grass monster. When there was no immediate attack they relaxed and used a miracle to discern the nature of the plane. After discovering that Nevla used a Miracle for a Wind Walk spell to carry them out to the edge of Thrag so they could move onto the next plane.
Manuel wants to come back and get an icon for this plane, he thinks they will need to incinerate an area and then use magic to build a bunker they can stay in while forging the icon. He thinks the combination of Ostea and Thrag should produce a world with almost no death, some of the others are concerned about overpopulation and all agree they need to try and avoid the curse aspects of the world so souls can pass on when they tire. They will return.

Bhoior they found interesting William was able to speak with the turtle although this was slow as he was not very bright and thought very slowly. They determined he was waiting for all the spirits of the dead from Av to arrive and then was going to transport them across the void to the lighthouse. William and Nevla are fascinated by the lighthouse but they don't want to wait for the turtle so they are going to finish exploring the south before . They could find no quick way to create an iconic link and fix the Coaltongue so they moved on, they debated where to go and decided they wanted to check on Av so set out for Nem.

Nem was boring, they did speak with the spirits of the dead crossing it and determined that the spirits just wanted to travel onwards and where drawn to the North. William believes the lighthouse is calling them. They did find the train interesting, William wondered if they could get it to fly but they decided that would mean stripping levitationals from the Coaltongue and the ship was more useful, they did plan on coming back here with Coaltongue and stripping the train for parts. Also they dismounted the lantern and plan to have Luc repair it so they have a lantern available.

Finally they reached the Av version of Flint , the located Ferg the Toadstool sage who was in charge of the Fey here, they told him that they intended to rescue the plane and they Fey should concentrated on gathering all the survivors together and keeping themselves going until Av could be restored. They also in passing eliminated a Shining legion patrol skiff but it self destructed before they could capture it. Manuel checked the old Ob facility in the Bleak gate but not much remained, although he gathered some parts to use in repairs on the Coaltongue. Finally the asked about Rock , and discovered he had got bored repaired the Aurum Treasure as the Aural pleasure and set off with Beshala, severel other fey and female ghosts and some Erinyes he had converted from the legion and gone looking for them. They concluded he would find the Coaltongue wait for 15 minutes and then wonder off again. They also concluded he had been able to recover the Erinyes from the legion because he was the Star of the ROCK RACKUS Harem anime .

Finally they moved into Mavisha being less keen on the mindcontrolling water plane but intending to invetigate that as well. They noticed the link between them and spoke with the Fish men and decided there must be something from that plane at the edge of this one and went to investiagate, as they went admiring the Dire anamalocarises . They located the Wax tower and Nevla called a swarm of fire elementals as they moved to investigate. Which is were we resume next session

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Andrew Moreton

The group set of to attack the Tower of Wax and then got distracted by talking. As they got near the tower the projection of the Savant addressed them, and started trying to get them to talk it was just stalling and trying to learn about them, when Manuel had an attack of honesty and told them they were trying to see which worlds they could save........
The Savant immediatly started talking to it's master and also talking to the group. it wanted to avoid a fight and was now willing to lose the tower as long as it could come up with a long term plan. Discussion went back and forth Nevla and William wanted to just attack the tower, while Manuel argued that they did not yet know what was going on and may want to talk to deal with the 'Ancient One' which the Savant was presenting itself as . They got a bit of information and as a gesture of 'good faith' the 'ancient one' told them about the ancient boat elsewhere on Mavisha , it also lied a lot. They investigated the tower and decided it was weird , possibly dangerous and weeks or months away from completion so eventually Manuel won out and they decided to leave it for now and look at the ancient boat. The Savant was relieved it was on the verge of being ordered to attack by it's master and now it had time to come up with a better plan.
I was suprised by all of this I expected the talking to get nowhere and violence to start. However I think William and Nevla's players were somewhat metagaming in their assumption of hostility and I am very tempted to change the set up here to something more complicated. I may go with the master aboleth being the same but more powerful while replacing it's minions with surviving slaves from the underdark , which will make choices more difficult for the pc's. I have not decided yet but overall I think I am going to mess with their expectations a bit.

Still concerned about the wax tower they investigated the ancient boat and indeed were surprised to discover that it belonged to the actual ancients,. The tons of Gold treasure they largely ignored, the ancient gold plate navigation device was interesting but did not work in the current cosmology. The undead Orc from the past was more interesting and he confirmed some information about the Shining Legion and they were able to confirm to him that his people had saved the world for ten thousand years or so which they considered to be a good job, he was releived and asked them to destroy the mirror that was trapping his soul. They found it amid Hermit crabs wearing golden armour from legionares as it was easier to find than a good shell. Carefully they unwrapped it and then Ulvaar hit it with an Adamantine axe several times breaking it. Then they saw the Orc's ghost walking north and told him he needed to catch the turtle before pointing it out to him and wishing him luck.
Around this time the rescued child they believe to be an incarnation of Ashima-shimtu asked about the 'Ancient one' apparently she had tried to read the childs mind and everyone elses and the child had been able to overhear her argueing with a master who wanted to control or kill everyone. They made a note of this and Manuel considered this evidence that diplomacy was worthwhile although they may have to kill whatever is in charge and then make a deal with any survivors.

They then debated going to Shabboath or trying other nearby planes first, they are split between kill it all with fire and talk , and then shoot it if it is hostile but agree they need to sort out Shabboath before deciding if they can use it or Mavisha . In the end they decided to go elswhere first. North of them was another watery world (replacing the southern half of Amrou) which had s fortified island in the middle defended by modern warships. From what they had heard and seen waves of undead formed at the edges of the world at random intervals and attacked the fortress. They decided to Wind-Walk to the fortress and then make a polite and cautious approach.

As they approached a major undead attack was underway with undead in boats and walking across the sea floor, the warships were shooting at them and they decided they were smaller versions of the new Dreadnoughts Tinker had designed , more advanced than anything in service back home, they also had extensive high angle AA weapons . Manning the walls of the fortress besides heavy gun mounts were red-shirted soldiers and as an attack lead by several more powerful undead threatened to breach the wall they saw a young women wearing a crown unleash powerful sorcery against the undead. William noticed she was accompanied or possessed by the ghosts of several regal women, and concluded she was drawing her power in the same manner as him. They picked out another fairly strong undead attack force and made their arrival in the middle of the undead, using high level magic and combat abilities to wipe out a bunch of the attackers to prove their bona-fides as possible freinds.
With the undead dispersed (I did not run the fight it was a bunch of CR2-9 Undead so they just got dramatically annihlated without ever having stats) the soldiers on the wall called down to them and provided ropes to climb up, as a ward over the walls dispelled flying magic. They remained at the wall until a staff officer arrived to escort them to a meeting with the Queen and senior officials. Inside the fortress they saw well built but cramped barracks like buildings holding soldiers and civilians, a church with several clerics casting create food spells, some mechanical workshops and several armouries. The palace was just a very nice townhouse probably a Governors mansion in the past. They were politely asked to leave weapons outside and they agreed if they could leave people with the weapons which was agreed Manuel and Padme stayed outside, Manuel passing the time by talking to local artificers , his opinion was they were generally technically superior but without the brilliant Tinker Oddcog inventions and intergrated magic.

Inside a herald took the titles of the Pc's for announcemant , Queen Nevla the first of Risur, Duke William Champion of the Unseen court and lord of the coastal bayou, and Duke Ulvaar King under the Anthras Mountains. The Locals were introduced as Queen Elizebeth the Third, Gloriana and empress. Apparently there was only one empire worth considering. She was a teenager who looked exhausted and left most of the meeting to her advisors, apparently the title Eternal Gloriana was not an empty title and she could channel the powers of her predecessors but she lacked the strength to do so for long . The players explained why they were here and their plan to save their world and hopefully others from the Gyre. The locals were interested and told their story , their empire had slowly united the civilised states of their world and then brought the less civilised areas under control then they encountered a barbarian kingdom ruled by mage-priests who practiced large scale human sacrifice and immediatly invaded. The leader of this kingdom carried out a great necromantic ritual which resulted in the world being overrun by undead. The Empire fought but this last stronghold was under siege when the sun went out and they ended up in the Gyre. The players agree that at the least they will try and evacuate the people here to another world they are saving but before a final decision they need to assess the planes nature. It is agreed they will meet with the Royal Astrologer and the Queen who will be able to channel a predecessor who is an expert on these matters. The group spends the night in a repurposed officers quarters were they can maintain their own security.
The next day they meet and discover that this plane is Water and Earth and that it;s essential nature is 'Civilisation triumphant' which they think is excellent, after some time they are fairly certain that the undead curse will either be broken or restricted to this world and agree with the locals that a proper effort at the ritual site would break it , so if necessary they will provide flying ships and their own high level help to break the ritual. They may still depending on their final choices need to evacuate these people to a world they can use and given the danger here consider using the Coal Tongue , the Storage picture and the Absurdist web to evacuate people to Av . The locals agree to provide a liason officer, repairs and if necessary can provide some troops to fight the Pirates.
They also share what they know about local planes. Shabboath they probed but after several sleeping soldiers tried to leave the camp they retreated in the face of Unknown mind control, the salt wastes of Amrou to the north are safe but of no interest and none of the other local planes seem to have anything of interest to them, except for Dunkellveiss which as a visiting dwarf from Risur and Beer although that Beer cannot be transported.
The players agree to return and continue their planar sweep. Amrou is indeed a salt waste, but William catches a pickpocketing goblin mummy
Sargon of Uggat, whose father was the cupbearer of Ur-Zubaba,. They find him an interesting conversationalist and quite like his world, they agree to bring him back a bunch of gold from Mavisha and place his world on their list of worlds under consideration. He also enthused about his recent visitor Rock Rackus! Much to the annoyance of William , Manuel was pleased to here Rock was around but sad he had been missed he is after all a Rock Rackus! fan. They are uncertain about the world but appreciate it's properties and offer to move Sargon of Uggat, whose father was the cupbearer of Ur-Zubaba, if they don't choose the world but he insists he stay here to protect his ancestral lands.
From there they moved to Dunkelveiss, the bearded Eagles impressed all, the running beer impressed Ulvaar, as did Ecanthia the Dwarven scholar and bard whose family they had kept running into. She was a picture of dwarven beauty and accompanied by a snowy white ermine which was also a scholar although with an emphasis on history rather than the arcane sciences, it turns out the Lightning Weasel had read some of her essay's. The rest of the team left the 2 dwarves to get aquainted. The dwarves stood around embarrassed and discussed dwarven history.
Seeing that things moved slowly with dwarves the others returned and began to study the plane, they discovered it's natural properties and thought it would be useful and may also cheer up all those terminally depressed dwarves in Drakr and make the world better plus Father Thunder would owe them one. Discovering the pirates had stolen the axes added one more thing to their list of reasons to kill the pirates. After a little time they moved on accompanied by Ecanthia heading for the plane of Killer mists. Wilanir, they were disconcerted that their seeing through fog effects did not work, and started to investigate the ruins when they saw an incorporeal dragon maw drain a deer of blood. They debated challanging him or keeping searching and settled on a challange in case their search took them to his horde and triggerred a fight. As they called out to him the mist shouted out "It' not my fault " and ran away.

Andrew Moreton

My current thought is to have the grand master and probably one or 2 vizier Aboleths, then give him a psychically enslaved leader of each of several people's and a small population of each of these races as stasis sleeping slaves. If I had thought of this in time I could have had Eriana as enslaved by the master, I suppose I still could .
So Great Master, a couple of Savants and 3-5 Slave leaders say Drow, Duergar, Svirteblifn , Dwarf and Goblin. I'll think about how this will work

Andrew Moreton

This session did not deal with the events I orginally planned as it turns out William's player will probably be unavailable for the next two weeks so I pushed them towards meeting William Miller to get the revelations from that meeting out when everyone was present, they will deal with Mavisha and Pirates later as that can be done with less than a full turnout.
After the dragon fled from them on Wilanir they debated searching other forts or splitting up, but decided to just follow the dragon, splitting up was a bad idea they felt in case a vampiric great wyrm stopped running away and turned on them, it would take all of them to handle him. Tracking him down in his lair proved fairly easy although they were dissapoined to find none of their magic could interrogate zombies they encountered along the way. Finding the dragon hiding by his horder Manuel was sympathetic to the obviously broken dragon, everyone else was abit less sympathetic as he was still a vampiric great wyrm red dragon so can't have been a nice person before his trauma and the end of the world. Nevla and William tried to coax the dragon into talking with their mighty charisma's (Nevla rolled a 1 , and with aid from William it was still a diplomacy total of 50) meanwhile erveryone else looked around staying away from the hoard and found the story of the world etched into the wall in draconic. They discovered that Doverspike the dragon had accidentally committed genocide and had gone insane at least partly because he had never felt bad about anything before and lacked the mental framework for introspection and redemption. Nevla was certain she could convince the dragon to make himself feel better he should repay the debt he owed the world by killing some bad people. They debated and decided that they should turn him loose on the shining legion as the same time they attacked, there he would have the promise of gold to appeal to his avarice as well as his need for redemption and the players would be able to take advantage of his distraction to slip into the fortress and rescue the people they needed to, while with the pirates there would be too much risk that Doverspike would kill all of the slaves. They did consider using magic to restore his sanity, but then realised that a Sane great wyrm vampiric red dragon was probably a worse problem than this insane one. They moved on planning to return when they were ready to attack the Shining legion.

The next world they came to was Bathory a world consisting of a great Convent set in mountains at the edge of the world , with a Gazebo on the cliff side. They considered the Gazebo to be a potential sinister threat, but were able to confirm it was none animate. As they approached one of the nuns came out to meet them and confirmed their intelligence that the convent was inhabited by vampire nuns. She asked them to keep clear of the nunnery as it was hard for the sisters to restrain their hunger after so long without food, she could just about manage and would serve tea in the Gazebo. The tea was quite good.
The nun called Genevieve explained about this world, while she was a vampire she and most of the rest of the nuns were not undead she had never died and still had a heartbeat she did need to drink blood but was not hurt by positive energy. It seemed that on her world most of what would be undead elsewhere were like this. They had peacefully lived among humans but several nations had united behind an anti-vampiric religion and a great war had started ,unfortunatly the aggressors turned loose a disease which was supposed to destroy the blood in vampires killing them, it mutated and devestated the world. This place survived because it was an isolated shelter from the world which vampires returned to when tired of living among humans often for a few decades.
From this they determined the world was Death and Water with a trait of 'Undead are more alive' this seemed useful as it would make undead less predatory and also mean that becoming undead no longer forced someone to become evil. They also learned that Rock had been here and his harem had expanded to include two vampire nuns! They carefully checked that Doverspike had been male, and then realised that Rock was attracted and attractive to all genders and feared him adding Doverspike to his harem. They wondered if he would eventually end up battling the Voice of Rot and killing it, they decided that was too embarrassing he was not allowed to steal their end boss!
They then discussed ways to help this world, they could not find a way around the vampires need for living blood but they did discover that a ring of sustenance could solve the problem for a vampire so they blew several miracles and a pile of shining legion gold on creating some rings and other magical source of food . Calily revealed the existance of the other monks and her magical origami flying monastery and they traded her rings of sustenace for bandoliers of magical fruit which could keep everyone fed. It would take a few weeks for the vampires to get over their hunger but then they would be willing to help. An Icon was created .
(This world has much of the way vampires work stolen from several novels, and was intended to be another interesting choice for the pc's)

Next Apet , to be continued after I deal with having to do my job for a while

Andrew Moreton

They were suprised by the nature of Apet, the dust and walls of force made it a strange place, encountering the devolved Ghidim suprised them and the vision of the leech upon the Ghidim homeworld did not give them any ideas. They were able to reforge their Icon of Apet which now charged with Air elemental energy could be used to repair the Coaltongue so they headed back to the Coaltongue via Avilona.
On Avilona they found the dying Eagle god , and considered trying to ressurect it but decided that was beyond the reach of their magic. They spent some time trying to work out what broke Avilona and flight on Lanjyr and it was not clear if it was the death of the bird, Kasavarina's failed experiment or the breaking of the Pillars on Axis island or if they were interlinked, no conclusion could be reached and they had no intention of using Avilona anyway as if they did they would be dodging Pembertons assassins for the rest of their lives.
The Coaltongue was repaired and taken out on a test flight to Ascetia, with the plan of swinging back via Gloriana to get some troops and more guns before crushing the pirates of Hunslow with an aerial assault. They did remember the lantern they had secured from the train and after breif regrets they could not get an elemental link from Padyer to try and set Hunslow on fire, they decided to fill it with oil infused with the Icon from Amrou and use the planar energy of that link to protect the Coaltongue and its crew from Hunslow. The divergence to Ascetia was GM Influenced otherwise they would probably have dealt with Mavisha/Shaboath and the pirates before heading North but scheduling issues for with players meant I wanted them to get to Ascetia this week not in the next two weeks.

Ascetia puzzled them they nearly attacked William Miller but he talked fast enough that they decided to give him a chance to prove he was not Nic. They concluded he was not and learned of the mirrored nature his and their presence in this world, which also to them explained why it seemed Ashima-Shimtu was different here. William persuaded Nevla to go and visit the grave of Ssramma not telling her why but persuading her to go on her own, she asked Ashima-shimtu to accompany her but she declined as she could sense she would be intruding on the tomb of a god and would not be welcome. Nevla met herself or at least an earlier self ,and told the story of events since the Great Malice, and was confronted with a choice to guide Ssramma;s last action. She did work out there was a third choice but neither vengeance or power interested her it took almost no time to decide to return the Eladrin women to life, I never had any doubt ehat the choice would be for these characters and this campaign.
They returned to talking to William and Nevla found him as frustrating as his twin. While they liked his philosophy more and found him less objectionable she could not stand his refusal to commit to acting to stop his other self, the others were more understanding but all of them wanted him to take a stand and act but he demurred pointing out that every time he had acted in his past and in his other self's life he had just made things worse.
As the convesation wound down I switched to their mirror selves back on Lanjur with their crashed ship and the return of Pemberton in a fashionable eyepatch. They talked about events since they had left and were dismayed that they had been gone a year and that the Ob had managed controlled hive minds to take over everyone. They were more annoyed when they realised that a fight with Harkover was likely and that Manuel had built him a Steam Battle suit which they now would have to fight as he said it seemed like a good idea at the time. Nevla noticed that of their crew who had been mirrorred only Ashima-Shimtu was msissing. Then Nic arrived with his team and taunted them, they shouted back and after getting the point he had a plan being put forward that very day but would not share details with them violence was about to start , however there was no time for that. Instead we returned to the Gyre for more discussion and I will move the fight to their next crossover moment.
They did come up with a clever plan to deal with Nic for good, if one picks up a trap the soul item made for you there is no saving throw so they tried to work out how to get him to accept something from them , and came up with a plan. Padme will use her sleight of hand skills to slip it into his smoking pouch so when he instincivly lights up , Poof he is trapped. Then they plan to trap him in an indestructible but none combat golem with a Nicodemus leaf farm and a bunch of philosophy books to see if they can reform him enough so he accepts death.
Next week Aerial assault on Pirates

Andrew Moreton

I have just realised Hunslow gives me an excuse to use my favorite endgame monster of all time , the Nightwave. A flying Undead Shark which can follow you anywhere . All is it missing is Laser beams from its eyes, and mine will have those because it can.

Andrew Moreton

This week and next week William's player is on holiday.
Discussion with Catahoula, the wondering drum major and mage of Iretha Ket, he explained in a musical number (No Actual Music was hurt in the performance of this game session, I stayed well away from making any strange noises in case the neighbours called an Ambulance for me) about the woes of his people , the players listened and approved of his tasteful musical style. The nature of the problem puzzled them and they concluded that Catahoula, did not knoe enough and they would have to visit Iretha Ket to see if they could help, particularly as it seemed powerful magic had already been tried. They decided that the pirate's needed dealing with first but that they would visit Iretha Ket soon. They did speculate that given the nature of the world a supreme musical number may be needed to fix things and the they could arrive to find Rock (and his Harem backing group) had already saved the day.

The plan for dealing with pirates started off simply they had added some extra rapid fire guns and soldiers from Gloriana to the Coaltongue and would sweep in guns blazing blow up or burn all the wooden pirate ships with the Coaltongue and they would stand by to engage and kill the leaders if they counterattacked. Then they complicated things the first worry was Hunlow, they worried about facing the dieties attacks directly they concluded that they should not touch the water and had to do things fast before storms or other effects could manifest, to help defend the Coaltonge a Lantern using Amrou oil was used to illuminate the ship and traditional wards against hexes and demons set up in the hope this would buy time. Then they discovered the next serious problem, the Slaves. There were slaved on all the ships and docks and many of these would be killed when the Coaltongue bombarded them, to the Queen of Risur and her team this was not acceptable something must be done. They had to rule out a slower assault with lots of troops as it could lead to a hostage situation and give Hunlow time to intervene. Next was summoning angels or elementals to grab slaves and fly them to safety but they ran the numbers and this would save at best dozens of slaves not the hundreds or thousands they expected. Even using the Asurdist web and Ulvaar's TK he would not be able to do much better and they needed him to fight. Finally Queen Nevla came up with an idea use a Miracle to rescue the slaves after some disussion a Miracle from Ssramman would be able to rescue all the women and child slaves given her position as a Goddess of Women unfortunatly that would leave the male slaves beind but they could not think of a better solution, trying to stretch her powers may weaken the miracle and allow Hunlow to block it or just cause it to fail.
The attack commenced and the modern heavy guns of the Coaltongue rapidly smashed the Wooden ships to burning wrecks, however they knew they had missed the leaders and would face a counterattack. While the Coaltongue hunted down the last pirate ships and fired on any groups of pirates they could see the heroes looked around for their real enemies and saw rising out of the water the Captain and the Admiral with a sharkfin behind them at which point Manuel's player realised what they faced as it is one of his favorite monsters as well and warned them a Nightwave was going to attack and it was emerging behind and beneath the Coaltongue were no heavy cannon could be brough to bear.
Manuel engaged with his cannon and Nevla used a miracle to unleash a Sunburst spell which hurt and angered the nightwave and it swept into attack , fortunatly Manuel's steamsuit and shield thwarted it's attack, but the Admiral wielding the ancient dwarven axes attacked as well leaving Manuel feeling very badly hurt. Captain Thrusty leapt to engage Nevla but she desperatly managed to parry his attack. Ulvaar , William and Padme closed in on Thrusty who parried all of Ulvaar's attacks and stabbed him painfully in return while nimbly dodging most of William and Padme's attacks although he was still hurt noticably.
Manuel disengaged from the Admiral and the Flying Shark of Doom with acrobatics but they did not care and dropped him into single figure hit points and only his freedom of movement stopped him being eaten. He let the Shark have a Nock Gun to the face , but it kept coming. Nevla cast Stormbolts wreathing all three attacks in lightning and Thrusty slipped on something on the deck. He rolled a 1 and took full damage which killed him, anything else and he would have been fine. The Nightwave was also killed as the damage rolled was high. The Admiral turned on Nevla and left her is deep trouble , unfortunatly for him despite his huge total of hit points and DR he could not survive the full attentions of Ulvaar, William and Padme and went down. Proving to me I need to stop being nice, I had originally considered adding a couple more opponents for the fight but dropped them, for the Legion, Mavisha and the Voice of Rot no more pulling punches I am throwing in the Kitchen sink.
They immediatly moved to Drozhini and rescued the rest of the slaves turning over the mess of organising , feeding and governing them to Gloriana as they had manpower and organisation and did not need to rush off to the next crisis. Among the rescued slaves were survivers from Caeloon, the Young emperor from Celestia (a Celestial Dragon) and many others. With the gratitude from this and recovering the axes they were able to forge Icons for Caeloon, Celestia and Dunkelveiss. They did not want icons for Hunlow and after discovering the Planar trait for Drozhini declined to try for one there.
We were getting late so they decided to leave Mavisha for next time and procede to gather information on Iretha Ket so they could think about it over the week. The arrival with Musical number and red carpets impressed them and the world is growing on then Manuel was already sold on this world but Ulvaar and Nevla are appreciating it more. They met with the loving couple , the Queen and the Court Physician and went over what was known , they still had no idea so they decided to recover the records from the Kings chamber where he was lost in depression , he of course failed to notice Manuel creeping in and out. Consulting the records they made the connection that a low level hive mind effect was in play and used the detect energy cantrip and found Ghidim planar energies on the lovers and nowhere else. Concluding it was thought froms they had William who is a skilled musical arranger and singer quickly come up with a duet he and Nevla could use to propose the solution of thinking the right way to cure the disease and performed it for the Queen who took up the musical number and it spread across the city in a cheerful musical performance until Obliteras the undead hating sun pressed it's assaulton the massed skeletions and they feared this may end as a tragedy were the Skeletons gave their existance to save the future until at last the King roused from his depression by the song and the waking of more young lovers joined in and drove Obliteras away with the power of his song.
I really thought it would take them longer to work this out but they made the right connections very rapidly.
We finished with them and the young lovers feastign alongside the skeletons who had begone a Spring cleaning and mending montage as they preapred the city for the awakening of the remaining couples.
Iretha Ket is almost certain to make the finished list of planes

Iratha Ket is so goofy, but I'm pleased by how many groups have taken to it. For the 5e version, though, I sheepishly have slotted it in as a hidden part of the Bleak Gate that you can sometimes stumble upon, making it as present or hidden as a GM needs it to be.

Andrew Moreton

My players have been looking for it since book 6. I used some of Arkwirghts hand outs for the Symposium and missed that Iretha Ket had been included as a Life/Death plane with an affinity for spontaneous musical numbers. Since they learned about it the players particularly Manuel's player have been looking forward to finding it and he has been planning to make sure they include it in their rebuild of the world. If I had the time and patience I would have liked to go through Disney Musicals and have appropriate tunes available for the right moments but that was too much effort .
There should be some slightly silly and nice places in the Gyre most of the rest of it is doom and gloom

Andrew Moreton

Chekhov's bomb got used!
and several pc's became undead!
and the write up may be delayed a few days as I am on holiday for a couple of days
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Andrew Moreton

The team started planning their investigation of Shaboath and Mavisha. After discussion they decided to not open up their visit by blowing up the bridge between the worlds as that seemed easy to do and so could be done later and would probably mess up any negotiations. They assembled a team consisting of themselves , the Monk Calily and the young(?) Ashima-shimtu. They arrived on the plane and started trekking across the dismal bog, and were met by the astral projection of the monkish figure (one of the savant's) which invited them to visit their underwater city, they descended a spiral staircase down a sinkhole as they did so they also failed their saving throws against being drawn into a mindscape which controlled what they could see and hear. Initially the changes were small so they did not notice the differences before they had all been drawn into the Mindscape, they did have Spell immunity and Mindblank effects up which boosted their saves and prevented Domination.
The journey ended in an inverted tower were they met a bunch of very grey dwarves and Blue/black skinned elved, completely ignorant of the stereotypes of these races they entered into discussion about the end of the world here and tried to work out the planar traits, they were able to confirm that the planar trait seemed to be the creation of an Underdark and the locals did not know why the world ended they thought something had gone wrong on the surface. Everything seemed to be going well when Nevla noticed that Mini-Ashima-Shimtu, had just walked through the wall and asked her about it. She revealed that they were in a mindscape and noone else was seeing anything. Nevla then tried to persuade Ashima to help, Ashima wants to avoid action they have worked out that she is afraid of taking actions because she fears becoming the Monster which Ashima-Shimtu was for most of her life, she is paralysed by the fear of responsibilty for her actions, Nevla takes responsibility for Ashima's actions assuring her that she will make sure that there are no bad consequences. Finally Ashima-shimtu teleported the team and one of the drow back to the Coaltongue which was sensibly left a safe distance from mind control range.
Here they assessed the true situation and determined they faced 4 Aboleth viziers and a grand master Aboleth which had ruled the world until the grandmaster grew bored and forgot to keep the world working, the viziers had kept the few remaining slaves alive but the world died. They decided the slaves needed rescuing and the Aboleth must die to make sure it did not sneak into their solar system. They considered a miracle to rescue the female slaves but that was not a good solution. Manuel wondered Iretha Ket's undead ritual could be used to turn all the slaves undead on a temporary or permemant basis but decided that as it required consent so would not work, the idea though of using the undead who are immune to mid control to deal with the Grandmaster was set. They considered a strike team of Musical magicians from Iretha Ket and Vampire Nuns from Bathory as well as turning some of the team undead. Then Manuel realised the Grandmaster was sleeping in the center of the vast cavern with no slaves around ,At last a morally valid target for the BOMB, so Miracle spells were used to turn Manuel(bomb and stealth expert) and William(teleportation ennabler) undead then accoampanied by Genevieve the Vampire Nun (Mellee support) the three would invisibly sneak into the center of the Cavern and detonate the BOMB teleporting out at the last minute. It was then decided that as Manuel had a stealth score of 61 in his steamsuit he would carry everyone. Immune to mental detection and pretty much immune to normal detection they crept down and planted the BOMB above the sleeping Aboleth teleporting out just before it converted a ha;f mile sphere of water and Mud to Burning corrosive freezing fire, the Savant died and linked to him so did the viziers. Manuel and William then managed to get ressurected. Immediatly Manuel started bugging William to use retrocognition so Manuel could'study the explosion for Academic reasons'. Help was sent from Av and Gloriana to get thr freed slaves organised
The team resumed their exploration from Iretha Ket, Gardoboreal with it's titanic and violent elementals the did not visit but magica study revealed it's planar trait of natural events spawning elementals and it went on the Hell No list,, Next they visisted Guay as they explored it they encountered the Steelshaper which threw them for a moment as they thought they had thoroughly killed him(correctly), he insulted them a bit and warned Nevla that 'She will betray you it is ineveitable" before being backstabbed by Padme , resulting in them awaking from a dream. They looked around a bit more and encounted a truly charming and charismatic pale blackhaired vampire who won them over with her wit and charm (the players realised this was some sort or image of Archfiend and Diplomancer Syrah from Ashima-Shimtu's mind) who reminded Ashima-Shimtu she would rejoin her eventually before they woke uo again and fled the plane, they determined that taking this plane would make people minds open for editing while they slept so it too got added to the Hell No List.
From there they moved to 10 which was not a blasted waste but the site of some Epic Battle between Flying fortress Zeppelins and the Shining Legion. Manual enthused about the wrecked automata and technology so they investigated . They confirmed that the wreckage was from a fight with the Shining Legion and that the tecnhology on display was briliant a fusion of the work of multiple inventors on the scale of Tinker. In the bridge of the Airship they found some records and also ressurrected the Captain and Chief of Staff and discovered Castle Wulfenburg as the airship was known had been the capital of an empire which had fallen during the fight between the Evil other and the Baron who ruled the empire and protected it's people. It seemed that the Baron and his top people had been taken by the Shining Legion. It seemed that this empire had been acceptable as a protector of the weak against the local mad scientists and the planar trait was that magic and science were more similar and that Mad Scientists were rather like Mad Wizards. Manuel liked this world and they had it as a possible alternative to Jiesse, Manuel could just create an icon he had a natural link to this world. (No prizes for guessing where I stole this world from, Manuel's player worked it out about halfway through their visit).
Going further North was ruled out as they wished to avoid any risk of contact with the Voice of Rot and starting a conflict before they were ready, likewise they were avoiding the west to avoid starting a battle with the shining legion. So they moved to 7 which was the furthest north they would go it was a plane with burnt out villages and dead cows, which again appeared to the the work of the Shining Legion. Moving through the rubble they found a black swanfeather cloak the residence of a powerful spirit which they spoke with via William. The spirit was the patron of a clan of free people whose world had been destroyed in a battle with terrible enemies who had raised a false element and goddess into the sky a great red moon and the fight for their peoples freedom shatterred the world. The world trait was "No One Can Make You Do Anything, and Respect your Chosen Leaders" a dichtomy which seemed to lead to local democracy and a loose organisation until an outside threat united everyone behind charismatic leaders. This sounded nteresting combined with some of the more autocratic planes to help keep people free (Again no prize for spotting my favourite RPG setting I stole this from)
They were about to move onto the Swamp Metarie before I remembered something I had meant to do earlier. A sending was recieved from William Miller saying he had some guests who wanted to speak with them. They returned to Ascetia and encountered 3 dead spirits King Aodhan, Mayor Macbennin and the young Nilasa Hume. The King had seen the Voice of Rot at the end of the world and had then encountered the other 2 spirits and they beleiving that the Constables would come to face the Voice of Rot had gathered information before returning to try and aid them. It seemed that the Voice of Rot was waiting on Reida but not alone, the 4 riders and professer Pardue were there to aid it and Machennin beleived they were linked by the rituals used by the whitches of Cauldron Hill so the Voice of Rot could not die until its minions did, the King was able to report he could feel the Power of the rites of Kingship flowing from the parts of the Arc where Risur lay so he advised Nevla to make her stand on Risuri soil. The group spoke with the spirits and confirmed that the King and the Mayor were content in death and the King was pleased with is successor, the King and Macbennin said they would go an d spy on the Voice of Rot and be ready to report to the team on Teykfa before they made their move. Nilasa had asked how Gale and the others she knew in life were doing and Queen Nevla had offerred to ressurect her, she was ressurected and moved to Av which would be safe until it was brought back into the world.
FInally they spoke with Obiliteras, they convinced it that the undead of Iretha Ket were not evil bringing along some of the young lovers they had been protecting to show that they were dedicated to preserving and not destroying life, then they told it about the daily undead attacks on Gloriana and it started to move towards Gloriana to provide it's protection

Excellent use of a bomb. Screw those tentacled enslavers.

I love the extra planes you added, though for the life of me I'm not getting the references.

And another great idea having Aodhan and Macbannin pop up to do a final bit of help for the party.

Andrew Moreton

Moving north from Obliteras(which I only just realised I have been spelling and pronouncing incorrectly all the time) the group encountered the blasted Moor of Ringes, fortunatly in their established pattern they left the Coaltongue in a safe area while the main team probed each world so the crew were not stricken by a homicidal frenzy. The main team continued to resist the parasites as they found a small throne and analysed the black powder to discover undead cat fluff. So they started looking for an undead cat and were able to use trueseeing to spot the invisible cat watching them. Negotiations with the Cat began as it ignored them and shortly after the initial conversation openings Manuel noticed his 'Ring of Delayed Doom' had activated revealing that a disease had affected him and given him an insane urge to kill people which it was blocking for a minute (He nearly forgot this item , and only remembered it after rolling for shooting Nevla in the back with a Nock gun for 315 pts of damage) as they tried to work out what was going on and the Cat of Doom realised they were not going to go mad it attacked, a Wail of the Banshee did nothing but came close to hurting them, then a timestop followed by Plague Storm , Cloudkill and Stinking cloud which all failed because Ulvaar had his lifebubble on everyone (Seriously that one ability has made things easier for them so many times) . Manuel used an Elixir to become undead and so immune to disease for 20 minutes , everyone else tried to spot the cat . Then it used a wave of exhaustion on them , which was crippling for several pc's because they now had problems carrying their equipment at this point they decided the cat was not a big enough problem to be worth fighting and teleported out. Analysis revealed the planes property of murderous insanity and they added it to the list of planes they did not want an icon for.
Moving on they came to Metarri (AKA Dagobah/Kashyk) the giant newts amused them and they found the crashed golden legion ship. Realising something was trapped in the boiler but suspecting a devil they set up a safety system to vent the steam as they opened it and a Dimensional lock to stop the devil teleporting. Of course the Savety vent failed and scalding steam filled the ship which because of the lifebubble they were completely safe from (they also had fire resistance magic up). A rather sad pit fiend crawled out ranting about gremlins and being trapped for 10 years, they made him some tea and sympethically chatted with him and got the complete layout of the Shining Legions fortress as well as information which Ashima-shimtu corroberated about its leadership. Then they stuffed him in the absurdist web, planning to release him with a warning after they had broken the legion. By this point they worked out this plane broke technology and retreated without ever bringing the Coaltounge down (so no sabotage for them). Again this world is being consigned to the bin.
They decided to finish their sweep of planes not too close to the Legion or Voice of Rot and moved onto 7 which was a world of floating rocks apparetly bare of all life until close investigation revealed clutches of Sleeping Dragons on many of the rocks . Retrocognition was used to learn of the planes history and it turned out the doom of this plane was the fault of dwarves who dug too deeply (a common problem but this time no Balrog) the core of the planet has a strong charge of Earth magic while the rest of the plane was steeped in air magic, when they mined the core the balance was upset and the world flew apart killing most things. The dragons then ate everything and before they started on each other the elder dragons put them into suspended animation. It was determined this ritual would wake them if there was enough life on the plane to sustain them but until then sisturbing them jus triggerred an attack. No way round this was found but a plane with easy flight and young female red dragons was determined to be something they had to use El Kevin defeinetly thought so , and Pemberton would be unhappy of they did not. Also it would replace Baden which they were suspicous of anyway.
Finally 11 appeared to be a world frozen in winter with the slightly ruined form of magnificent towers amidst the tree's and small houses almost all ruined also amidst the tree's. The players concluded elves lived here from the way the tree's and towers blended in , so they entered the edge of the world to use retrocognition to find it's histroy and immediatly an elf arrived and greeted them , she was standoffish and warned them this place was a sanctuary under her protection and any theft or damage would result in her killing them. They assumed she was overconfident but powerful (they were wrong she was not overconfident I had dug out the mythic rules and killing 5 level 20 pc's would not have been that hard). They spoke for a while telling her part of why they were there and she was suprised that another group had worked out how to build a solar system. She agreed to speak with them more comfrotably and invited them to her home for breakfast. William completed the retrocognition and determined this world was old, there had been no apocolypse it seemed that as the sun faded the elves had put their civilisation into hibernation and then let the end come.
At the elf called Galadrial's house(pc of mine, I have limited imagination for names) they had some very nice breakfast pastries (causing 2 of the players to recognise the elf , which was my pc on sunday , they also concluded that meant I would have pulled out all the stops for maximum cheese). They discussed things more , the elven civilisation was largely sleeping waiting to see if anything interesting came along before they joined their gods and ancestors. She had met Rock (Annoying little man with bad taste in music), the Shining legion(a Pit Fiends head on a stick was outside) and William Millar but was largely uninterested in general gyre events. The players thought this world may be interesting as including it would wake the elven civilisation and give them another powerful group in the solar system who could help protect against the devils and ghidim while leaving planar links open. Galadrial agreed to consult with the hibernating Queen and High mages , as she did so they departed to prepare for the attack on the legion.

Firstly they decided the Volcano needed to go. So Manuel had a Mad idea, he would build a volcano snuffing bomb, based on the BOMB and using all of his alchemical knowlege and built in Wulfendyne the plane of mad science he would build an ice bomb to extinguish the volcano. Meanwhile Doverspike would take out the lava store en-route to the aft treasury which should keep him busy,happy and out of their way while hurting the legion. El Kevin and allies from various worlds would lead strike teams to rescue the slaves, while the Coaltongue protected by Gold from Urim and the disabling of the Egalatrix's main weapons would take out their air-skiffs and dock facility. The main team would kill General Marcus and his chief liuetenants which would also help confuse the legion command structure. They believed the leaders they face are
1) High General Marcus Hellknight, Anti-paladin and Diabolic Graveknight heavily armoured (living suit of Adamantine armour) immune to most elements scary as hell and deadly in close combat
2) General Grumblejack. Cheerfully cannibalistic former Ogre Barbarian and know a powerful devil
3)Star Marshal Tiadora , handmaiden devil and Bard

We are into the end game now , with an estimated completion in November

Andrew Moreton

As plane building planning is soon this is my current skill dc checks to build complicated planetry combinations
New basis
DC3O 1 Planets
DC50 2 planets
DC70 3planets
DC90 4 Planets
+5 per competing elemental trait(Air -- Earth etc) This is only between planets not the slot so if in the air slot you try and put Hendreiki and Wingover (both Air and Earth) there would be no problem with the earth clashing with the slot or the other planet but Hendreiki (Air and Earth)and Wulfendyne(Air and Fire) would get a clash between the air and earth of Hendreikie and Wulfendyne
+/-5 for compatible natures (GM Judgement)
For each completed Binary or bigger slot +7 on all none single slots

I believe my pc's can easily with buffing spells hit as high as 70 I think William fully buffed could manage as high as 86 but can't do that reliably and he would be limited in his ability to fight while preparing for that

Andrew Moreton

I have started on the Voice of Rot fight.
Key features I am looking at are
1) The players have access to an Item which will death ward all of them. This one unique item makes all negative energy attacks useless for about 10 minutes so the VOR can't use negative energy attacks
2) The pc's could include multiple allies, I think they will probably only use Kevin as the others are not mirrorred but I want to be ready if I need reinforcements. Also of course Rock but probably not his harem
3) I think this will be the climatic fight of the campaign, the axis island confrontation I am leaning towards less fighting more talking

So reinforcments for the VOR, I am adding the 4 surviving horsemen from Drakr , and Professer Pardue from the assassination of the king (he was a VOR agent in the Ob it turns out and the players remember him) all linked to the VOR by bonds of forced faith so they have to go down before it does.
I am considering having it raise specters of versions of the pc's from other timelines probably capable of doing a fair amount but having very low hp so they are weaker than the pc's.
I expect Queen Nevla to fight from inside Risur so she will have those benefits , and if they think of it I will let William call up the spectres of previous kings

Good luck. Honestly, though, I'd just have the Voice of Rot whisper a primordial susurrus, which makes the magic item the PCs have shatter, and the spell on each of them be dispelled. I mean, dude's nearly a god. He'd clearly have tricks beyond what's on the statblock to deal with people who think they've got a silver bullet.