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The Dark Squad in the Secrets of Saltmarsh #137 Into the Mere of the Dead Men Part 2.

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Dark Squad in Neverwinter Downtime Redux

Session #028b X-Rated.

Dark Squad (in alphabetical order, no egos here).
Buggles (played by Stu) Male Wood Elf Fighter Lvl 2/Rogue Lvl 3
New Tricks (played by Bear) Male Tabaxi Warlock Lvl 5
Ramshambo (played by Kev) Male Half-Elf Rogue Lvl 5
Vincenzo (played by Haggis) Male Shifter (Wildhunt) Druid Lvl 5

Daktari Male Human Uthgardt Sky Pony Barbarian Lvl 5
Garumn Male Mountain Dwarf Paladin of Moradin Lvl 5 RIP*
*Trapped in the land of the bad dead ancestors.

Buggles’ undead servitor
Gwen Female Duergar Skeleton, in full-face helm and armour

NPC hangers-on, rescued prisoners of the Orcs
Geradil the “Inconceivable”, aging trapper (Male Human)
Spandwick the Magic Gnome, ex-stage mesmerist (Male Gnome)
Bel, the beautiful and lovely wife of Spandwick (Female Gnome)

So, here we go with the actual downtime activities, just to note that when we play this around the VTT then each PC gets to attempt to do one of their downtime activities- we roll/roleplay it out, and then work out along the way how long the activity has taken (in tendays) and obviously the costs incurred.

Then your thoughtful DM goes back to the PC that has spent the fewest tendays so far to see what they want to do next, and we keep moving on this way, so that all of the PCs get a go, but also so that we kinda move forward all of the PCs timelines at the same time.

Note the players send me a list ahead of the downtime session- I’ve been bothering them for weeks, of all of the stuff that they’d like to try to get done. The most comprehensive of these lists (from Buggles) was maybe half-a-side of A4, maybe a bit more with later addendums. The shortest list- just three lines of text, well… I’ll not shame them.

So, sometimes I don’t have a lot to go on. I try, of course, to prep a few maps or images, or else an NPC or two ahead of time, but- anything goes.

However, to recount the tale here it’s easier if I just concentrate on the activities of one PC at a time.

Right, let’s get to it, and the below action- keep in mind, represents about three months (actually eight tendays so far) of downtime in Neverwinter.

Note during this session we also talked a bit about the buying of magic items- I don’t generally get on with this kind of thing, but- I am happy for the PCs to convince me otherwise, on an item by item basis. So, I allowed some of this- but only, of course, for items that wouldn’t overly/dramatically change the toughness/damage output of the party. They’re pretty damn tough and lethal already.

So, and this is for the players- minor magical items (that’s +1 stuff, and anything else low level within reason) I am okay with, but always ask to be certain.

So, downtime.

Vincenzo does stuff...

The shifter druid starts off by tracking down a reputable armourer/leatherworker who can work with ‘specialist’ materials, namely the black dragon scales that he took from the corpse of Nightscale. Alas the druid doesn’t have enough cash to make the suit of magical armour that he wants, either +1 or else acid resistant. He does however have enough money to get a dragon scale shield manufactured, and then enchanted- a +1 shield (cost 200gp). He also manages to sell, or give away to his friends, the dragon scales he has spare.

Next up the druid spends several tendays chasing down, and then purchasing a bag of holding (cost 750gp), which the DM is keen for the PCs to have. I’ll just set up a separate character sheet on Fantasy Grounds called Bag of Holding and everything they find that’s treasure, or stuff they want to keep, can go in there.

Then the druid spends a tenday or two in the Temple of Oghma, having first paid his dues, he also hires a research assistant (cost 25gp/tenday), Vinnie checks out a variety of names/descriptive phrases from a number of the prophecies that the PCs have been given. For example, ‘the lair of the drowned ones’, or, ‘the ancient alchemist’, and a few others- alas all of the phrases are generic. There’s no legend of the ‘ancient alchemist’ to be found, likewise there are no known maps that point to a specific region being the ‘lair of the drowned ones’.

The hired research assistant, Brother Alan, believes that the phrases are descriptors only, the ‘ancient alchemist’ indicates, perhaps, a very old or else undead alchemist, while the ‘lair of the drowned ones’, perhaps a swamp.

So, a little headway but no actual progress.

Last up, and for the remainder of the downtime (so far) Vinnie manages to find a back alley apothecary who is happy to allow the druid to use his alchemical apparatus (but not his materials) to make a bunch of healing potions. Basically the druid can craft five healing draughts/tenday, at a cost of 175gp for the rental of the equipment, and the materials. When the session comes to an end the druid has manufactured ten healing potions so far, of course, he then sells on a number of these (at cost- maybe) to his friends.

Note, in all of the above there are obviously plenty of dice rolls- to track down someone to point the druid in the right direction, or to haggle over a price, or to locate much needed ingredients etc. Success isn’t a given, that’s what I am trying to tell you, why- well, you’ll see later, when we get to Newt.

But for Vinnie, great work.

Ramshambow does stuff…

First up the ex-smuggler tracks down the ‘Treasurer’, there’s one in every port- actually Ram already knows the guy in Neverwinter so this is easy to achieve. The ‘Treasurer’ guarantees, for a price, to get money given to him/her to a named other- within a reasonable time frame. Note this is the last instalment of Ram’s payment (I think) to Captain Rockbeard, the dwarf pirate that bought him out of slavery. Payment 350gp, I think- to go with the 400gp Ram paid last time.

Next up Ram goes in search of a magic items also, specifically he wants a set of Goggles of the Night for Daktari, he figures that the barbarian- like all of the other members of the Dark Squad, needs to be able to fight in the dark. However the hunt takes a while, and in the end requires the spending of money/bribes, but eventually he is directed to a dodgy tiefling who has a well-guarded ‘shop’, of sorts, in the Neverwinter sewer. After a bit of bargaining he gets the guy down to 800gp, which he pays himself. Later, back at the Dog Arms Inn- the PCs remember are all staying here; Ram hands the goggles over to Daktari and formerly welcomes the barbarian to the gang.


Nice place you've got here.

Note, it has also been agreed that Daktari should use Shatterspike, the magical Durgeddin the Black manufactured longsword formerly employed by Garumn.

Daktari is close to tears- “So, very nice peepuls. Zo very nice!”

Ram then spends a tenday or two also making use of the services of the Temple of Oghma, the House of Knowledge, with help from a research assistant he comes to understand where it is on the Sword Coast, and who it is, that is involved in slavery. He’s looking for likely targets for his ire.

Last up the rogue then reacquaints himself with the dockside, and the sea- it takes a while but eventually he gets taken on to help with a gang of folk mending nets, and then a bit of stevedore work. He’s looking to get ship-shape, and particularly to better his knot tying skills, and rope use in general- he wants to get back in the rigging.

Good work.

Buggles does stuff…

First up the wood elf heads for the Temple of Oghma- that’s right, the college of knowledge, don’t look so surprised. There he spends plenty of money to hire a senior researcher, Senior Brother Degas, to answer a bunch of questions he has about Gwen. This also necessitates that Gwen is thoroughly examined by the researcher (like a minor sage).


Buggles & Gwen go to the Library.

So, and maybe there’s some new info here that I have thought of since the session, so- check it out Stu/Buggles-

Gwen was a duergar in life, a female grey dwarf- most likely she was middle-aged when she died/animated. Clearly, powerful dark magic was employed somehow to capture her within Nightcaller (the whistle that summons her) or at least her physical, ahem… skeletal form.

Gwen’s soul very likely resides somewhere on the Fugue Plane, the home of the wandering dead, there it will- most likely, remain forever.

Destroying the Nightcaller whistle would prevent the physical, ahem… skeletal form of Gwen from appearing, but it would not free her soul- it would in fact break the link between Gwen’s physical, ahem… skeletal form, and her spirit.

There is a way, possibly, of contacting- and perhaps even locating, Gwen’s departed soul but these methods would most likely require high level magic, and may prove to be very expensive- if someone could be persuaded to even try.

For answers to a variety of Buggles’ other questions, senior researcher Degas, somewhat reluctantly, discloses that the wood elf may have greater success if he consulted a necromancer, perhaps.

Note senior researcher Degas is happy to answer any other questions that you have Buggles, but only those that are sent to me before the start of the next session, that’s the cut-off point. Need more info after that then you’ll need to spend some more money, and time.

Very good work, intriguing.

I’m really looking forward to Gwen’s story.

Next up Buggles finds a great scrimshaw artist called Four-Fingered Pee-Wee (thanks for that Stu, remember the players get to name the NPCs they meet/contact- gah!). So Pee-Wee does his job, and then through a few more contacts Ashardalon’s Fang is crafted- an enchanted dagger made from one of the teeth extracted from the skeletal ancient/huge dragon found in the dragon’s graveyard.

More remarkably, and having spent about 400gp on this project- and two tendays, Buggles gifts the blade (+1 dagger) to Ram.

Last up, the wood elf has also got the bit between his teeth- he eventually searches out an Underdark dweller in Neverwinter, a svirfneblin refugee, a deep gnome called Ramikin Nosefinder (thanks again Stu/Buggles, such a great name). Ramikin, after a bit of chat- and negotiating, is convinced to teach the wood elf how to speak Undercommon. This project however will be ongoing, and it’s going to take a while. Buggles however spends three tendays hanging around the workshop in which Ramikin mostly resides (the deep gnome makes crossbows) picking up as much as he can of the strange tongue.

Great stuff.

And so finally we get to Newt.

Oh, Newt.

What were you thinking?

Right then.

Newt does stuff…

The tabaxi starts off small, first up he locates and then negotiates with a variety of magical purveyors- a few low level spell scrolls. Then he buys expensive inks and copies the newly purchased texts into his book of shadows. Note the spells selected- three of them, are all low level, and are now able to be cast as rituals from his book.

The above takes two or three tendays.

It’s also worth noting that Newt, because of bad dice rolls, had to spend his last inspiration point in order to get one of the spells he wanted, remember this.

Then it gets tricky.

Note, when Bear (playing Newt) sent me a list of what he wanted to do during his downtime he wrote something like- ‘summon Jot (the quasit) to be my familiar’, we discussed at length the process. However, what happened next- well, that was all new/s to me.

So, Newt is going to attempt to summon a quasit (Jot) and to bind the fiend into his service, there are stages to this. The tabaxi first off locates a mage, Lira Vanderbilt, who is willing- for a price, to consult on the process. He then hires a small unused warehouse, and acquires a variety of summoning paraphernalia- chalks, candles, powdered gems et al. He also has a horizontal crucifix style device (with restraints) manufactured, for sex games he tells the carpenter. He then preps the space in the warehouse, and remember the warlock has been collecting dead things (‘of power’) for the last ten or so sessions- dragon bones, orc hands, assorted viscera etc.

And you thought he was such a nice kitty-cat.

The hired mage is of course on hand for the ritual, but again she’s just consulting, she has however previously made Newt aware that a blood sacrifice- his, and another sentient creature, will need to be made for the ritual to work. The sacrificed creature must be bled to death, note the mage suggests that a cat, a rat or a dog are all viable options.

Then, on the night of the ritual, it gets X-rated, and this all happened in the last ten to fifteen minutes of the session.

Newt disguises himself, very well as it happens- remember he’s making checks at every stage here. The tabaxi heads to the docks and finds a lady of the night, retires to a nearby alley to negotiate a price with her and then casts a hold person spell on the poor woman. Again- I made him roll all of this, every step of the way- stealth, persuasion, initiative- the lot.

The woman is bound, gagged, restrained- stuffed in large sack, and then taken to the nearby warehouse. With all the appropriate checks- all good to great.

But its getting a bit scary.

And I’m making this hard for the warlock, because it’s dark, and it’s very risky.

The consulting mage is very obviously upset by proceedings- as stated she recommended a cat/rat/dog be sacrificed. Newt however is in full flow- the tabaxi screams at the mage about the need to grasp ‘the flame of power’, and not to hesitate when dark deeds must be done- or some such. Newt needs to make a hard intimidate check (DC 15) and then as he piles on the charm to convince Lira to the dark side, a harder-still persuasion check (DC 18)- he beats both with plenty of room to spare (‘17’ & ‘23’).

Bear/Newt had prepared a short slide show- a variety of images showing his preparations for the summoning ritual. If this happens to you as a DM, this is the time you phone the authorities.

The mage of questionable morals, Lira, decides to go along with the enterprise, although she’s still a little on edge.

In short order the terrified streetwalker is bled out- killed, and the ritual completed.

Which just leaves us with one last dice roll, just to see how the ritual went- and the warlock has bonuses because of the help he has received, and the industry (and successful checks) that has gone into this grisly endeavour.

Newt rolls a ‘1’.

Slide 4, "And as my voice rings loud above the flame, an adoring flock of fiery demons salute me, and this is what happens..." Then Newt rolls a '1'.

He has no inspiration points left, he used it to get a scroll of Leomund’s Tiny Hut, shame…

With that the session comes to an end.

Just to make clear Newt (Bear), this is a downright evil act- with malice and aforethought.

We’ll have a little more of this next time, when Newt and the hired help discover who or what has just stepped out of the portal to the nether planes they have just opened.

Oh, and then we’ll conclude the rest of the downtime, and get on with the next bit of the campaign.

Or at least some of the adventurers will, for Newt things are very much in the balance right now…


Stay safe and well.

Cheers the Dark Squad and goonalan.
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Have you played since? (Before I start shouting suggestions)
No, this happened last Tuesday night, next session- this Tuesday (22nd) 7.30 AM.

Don't give Newt any ideas, I've sent Bear (playing Newt) a little heads up about what's going to go on in the next session- not a lot, just to say nothing good... and to think about how he wants to play it.

Stay safe and well.

Cheers goonalan


Vincenzo here; I wrote a short piece of Christmas prose inspired by the last session. Enjoy.

Twas the night before Christmas, and Newt murdered a whore.
A treasured, early present to Belphegor
Through torture and fear, the madam met her end;
All because New Tricks wanted a friend.
The preparations went well, but hark, a “1”, he's out of luck,
And now Newt is the one that is royally naughty word.


Dark Squad in Neverwinter Downtime Redux

Session #029a Hello Humphrey Far-Fer-Nar & goodbye to the Dark Squad.

Dark Squad (in alphabetical order, no egos here).
Buggles (played by Stu) Male Wood Elf Fighter Lvl 2/Rogue Lvl 3
New Tricks (played by Bear) Male Tabaxi Warlock Lvl 5
Ramshambo (played by Kev) Male Half-Elf Rogue Lvl 5
Vincenzo (played by Haggis) Male Shifter (Wildhunt) Druid Lvl 5

Daktari Male Human Uthgardt Sky Pony Barbarian Lvl 5
Garumn Male Mountain Dwarf Paladin of Moradin Lvl 5 RIP*
*Trapped in the land of the bad dead ancestors.

Buggles’ undead servitor
Gwen Female Duergar Skeleton, in full-face helm and armour

NPC hangers-on, rescued prisoners of the Orcs
Geradil the “Inconceivable”, aging trapper (Male Human)
Spandwick the Magic Gnome, ex-stage mesmerist (Male Gnome)
Bel, the beautiful and lovely wife of Spandwick (Female Gnome)

So, here we go again- the last bit of the Dark Squad’s downtime in the city of Neverwinter, and very specifically the bit in which we get to see if Newt lives or dies. The tabaxi has been a bad lad- in an old and dirty, hired for the occasion, warehouse the warlock has completed a ritual, with the help of a mage with very loose morals, Lira (also hired for the occasion). The ritual was to summon Jot, a quasit that Newt really would like to boss around (as his familiar), the bait for the summoning being a recently deceased streetwalker (it all got rather dark at the end of the last session). However, the last roll of the dice, to see how the ritual went, and a ‘1’, and Newt has not got an inspiration point, so he’s stuck with it.

Bear, who plays Newt, has been in touch via e-mail between sessions- he’d really like for Newt to live on, he went a bit far in the last session- but now he has seen the light, and would really (really) like to survive- pretty please, Mr. DM sir.

So, here we go-




It’s a little old skool, the theatrics, and suddenly standing between Newt and Lira is a white tuxedo wearing handsome young man, a full mane of blond hair, a caramel suntan, he’s all cheek bones and white teeth.

The fine fellow brandishes a martini glass, which he slowly empties while spying his new friends over the rim.


Which as opening gambits go, is a doozy.

There follows an incredibly weird conversation.

Lira Vanderbilt, the hired mage-consultant, however is soon after not for hanging around- she attempts to flee, although the feeling quickly passes- seconds later she’s draped over the newly summoned young man, and complimenting the beautiful fellow at every turn.

“Oh. Humphrey, you’ve thought of simply everything, you’re so deliciously devilish…” Lira gasps.

That’s right the summoned creature introduces himself, he’s Humphrey Far-Fer-Nar.

He’s very polite, very posh/rich (clearly a noble), very well-educated/spoken, and incredibly charming.

And Newt is very much on his best behaviour.

The trio soon talk out the conundrum, Humphrey takes a moment to precis the situation-

“Just think, if it wasn’t for your mistake young Newt- we would never have met, we would have never have got to know each other, and I am certain that we’re going to be very… very good friends.”

Just for info Lira is subject to Humphrey’s charm person spell- and she failed her save with a ‘1’- so, that’s catching, while Newt is having his mind read- detect thoughts, and so the summoned being has very quickly got the measure of this encounter.

I can’t believe Bear/Newt spent all week fretting about what was going to come through the portal, this fellow seems hardly dark at all. A little devilish, perhaps. Besides what would be the point of just porting in some fiery hellion to start a fracas.

No, fighting is so gauche- it’s what the PC/players do, I am a DM- a class above, and understand that devils and demons are not (at least the management) interested in short term gains, they have their eyes on more (terrible) long term goals.

Eventually Humphrey indicates that the chitter-chat is over, now to the serious business of the evening- there are the three persons/bodies in the warehouse- Newt, Lira, and the dead prostitute. Newt has to decide, who does what. Humphrey states- “One dies, one comes with me, and one stays here to serve me- you choose who goes where my new best friend.”

Newt choses to stay here on Faerun, the alternative- the tabaxi enquired, very politely, was a one-way jaunt to Avernus. He chooses to serve, and for Lira to go with Humphrey (to Avernus), and the dead woman, well- she stays dead- an elegant, simple solution.

Although the DM is unsure why he didn’t choose the following (or a version)- one to die= the dead prostitute, one to serve= Lira, one to go with Humphrey= the dead prostitute, again. That would work too.

Nobody said they had to be different ‘ones’, as it were. Newt just seemed to assume this, most odd- and Bear is such a clever fellow in real life. Let’s hope he doesn’t realise how foolish he has been.

Humphrey, before his departure also takes half of everything that Newt owns- half of all the tabaxi’s money, that’s approx. 500 gold coins. He also takes possession of the warlock’s magical cloak, a +1 cloak of protection- I think that cost him around 700gp. Well, this is turning into a very expensive evening.

That was a lovely conversation to have, Newt/Bear was seething- but keeping a lid on it throughout, while the rest of the gang- well, they were pretty much laughing all through the encounter, it took us over thirty minutes of back and forth to get to here.

I thought at one point Stu (who plays Buggles) was crying on the VTT/Discord, he was so amused.

Humphrey gets Newt to sign a blood contract, actually the page he signs is blank- as Humphrey stated at the time- “awful rush, but I’ll sketch down a few thoughts and details later on. It’s important to keep it all legal like, for your protection.” The ever-so considerate Humphrey will be back to check in with Newt in ten sessions time, that’s an abstract/non-specific amount of time later, but- it’ll do for now. At which point he will, of course, take a bunch more of Newt’s stuff- as tribute. The fiend makes it clear that when it comes to the final wrangling over Newt’s soul then the lawyers may have to get involved (Humphrey vs Belphegor), but until then- he’s going to be calling in at regular intervals, to collect his dues, and maybe also to set Newt at a task or two.

“You’re mine now.” Humphrey makes it sound as if the tabaxi has just won a holiday.

Newt spends much of the rest of the night (after Humphrey and Lira depart) cleaning the warehouse top to bottom, and then creeping through the dark streets to an open sewer- in which the dead prostitute’s body is deposited. Then hot foot- all the way back to the Dog Arms Inn.

As it turns out Gundren Rockseeker and Daktari are still in the barroom, enjoying a little after hours refreshments- a ‘lock-in’, the elderly dwarf is delighted to see the tabaxi- “You’re a lucky feller, you missed all the excitement tonight.” Newt is, of course, wondering what could be more exciting than the night he has just had.

Newt has won the Dog Arms Inn meat raffle- half-a-pound of pork sausages, and a tray of lamb chops- he is, indeed- as both Gundren and Daktari declare repeatedly, an incredibly lucky feller.

Note the meat raffle was a big thing in the boozer when I was a much younger man.

Also, as a good DM I didn’t want Bear/Newt to think that he hadn’t got anything out of the experience. Newt has always been a winner in my eyes.

[Newt summons Humphrey 500 XP]

So, I can’t tell you who, or indeed what, Humphrey is- and please don’t guess in this forum, that would spoil the surprise.

Next day.

Nothing untoward happens, and Newt is very relieved. However he’s also very keen to get the show on the road, the tabaxi convinces his colleagues that downtime in Neverwinter is done- oddly the only PC that still has a list of downtime tasks to do is… Newt. The list gets scrubbed.

So, next- the saying of farewell, firstly the inconceivable Geradil says adieu, and rewards each of his rescuers with a healing potion; Spandwick and Bel have no money or treasure with which to reward the Dark Squad- they are however tearful, and very grateful for their lives. Note Newt is Bel’s favourite, the beautiful female gnome likes to stroke the tabaxi, and he’s happy to oblige her. Bel goes to do so but shies away at the last moment- something doesn’t feel right, something’s different- she’s suddenly very nervous of Newt. Most odd.

Last to depart is Erky, who like his compatriots has nothing of great value to give, except his heartfelt thanks, and maybe a few friendly words of advice. Buggles is certain that they will meet again somewhere further along the road of life.


Final Farewells.

[Goodbye to the NPCs 500 XP]

The farewells done with, now for the voice over for the Dark Squad’s departure, on a boat called Waverider, bound for a small town on the edge of the Mere of Dead Men, almost exactly halfway between Neverwinter and Waterdeep. Their final destination is Saltmarsh, although Waverider will be dropping the Dark Squad off in a small fishing village called Ashby, from there it’s a couple of hours walk to Farhill Mine, owned by Gundren Rockseeker.

Here’s the story in full, although for ease of digestion broken down into bite-size morsels-

1) Gundren tells the Dark Squad about how he made his money, courtesy of a mine in/near Phandalin, but he paid the price for his fortune- his older brother Tharden was killed, while he was kidnapped by goblins- beaten to within an inch of his life, and his younger brother Nundro was reduced to a child-like state by a vicious torturing drow.

2) Gundren has had enough, he wants to retire while he can, he’s going to need at least six months to sort out something with regard to the newly found Durgeddin the Black forges, and to sort out his operation in Phandalin.

3) Gundren wants to retire to Saltmarsh, he’s been there half-a-dozen times and the sea, and the wilds, and the size of it- not too big, not too small, excites him. It’s a great place, close to his latest venture- Farhill mine, but…

4) It seems some folk in Saltmarsh are still finding it difficult to accept the presence of the mine, and particularly his dwarven compatriots (see below) in the region. Saltmarsh, as Gundren describes it, is experiencing growing pains.

5) Farhill mine has been a going concern for three years now, and is starting to really make some money. There are now two hundred workers on site, mostly dwarves from Gundren’s clan, but also a good number of locals. The mine supervisor- Manistrad Copperlocks is great at her job, although… it seems she is not so adept at dealing with the locals.

6) Eventually, here’s Gundren’s offer- he’d like to purchase six month’s of the Dark Squad’s time (maybe longer). He’s written a letter to Manistrad by way of an introduction to the Dark Squad- they’re to help her out, she’s to put them to work. Not as miners, but as problem solvers. As Gundren states- “first, you need to earn Manistrad’s trust.”

7) Manistrad’s trust won, Gundren will suggest that the Dark Squad move to Saltmarsh proper and start to get involved in the town- fixing whatever problems exist, helping out the local authorities, making a name for themselves, and perhaps even representing the Farhill mining concern on the local council.

8) Gundren is happy to divulge that the money to set up Farhill was a three way split, with loans secured from the Neverwinter and Waterdeep authorities, along with a large chunk of his own capital. It seems no-one wants this project to fail, and this being the case the mine is allowed to have a representative on the Saltmarsh council. At present this is Manistrad but chatter doesn’t seem to be her strong suit. Gundren was wondering if one (Vinnie) of the Dark Squad could perhaps step up?

9) Last bit, probably, Saltmarsh sits on the edge of adventure- the Mere of the Dead Men is but a stone’s throw away. So, in conclusion- go to Saltmarsh, sort whatever needs sorting out. Make it a happy place for Gundren to retire to, and in the process- get away from Neverwinter (& Ashardalon etc.), start afresh, and perhaps make your fortune.


Saltmarsh is just about here on the map.

Or something similar, and keep in mind that the PCs are buying this because we’ve had a number of chats about what comes next.

This is collusion, we’re all in this together.

[Gundren’s new task 500 XP]

Just to remind you- no spoilers here.


So, I’ve drawn a map of the Saltmarsh region, I’ve got at least three (small) adventures planned- all set in and around Farhill mine, and while the Dark Squad are sorting these out it’ll give me a chance to build something on Fantasy Grounds with what comes next.

Some things I have stolen, some things I have mangled and reshaped, some things I have just plain gone and made up.

I sold the players on the fact that this was to be an old school style campaign interlude, their PCs are going to spend six months to a year in Saltmarsh. They’re going to ride into town (sorta) make friends and enemies, solve problems- go on wild adventures, uncover whatever needs to be uncovered and… well, all of the usual stuff.

This is how I/we used to do it back in the (g)olden days, generally (I was pretty much always the DM) I’d draw a pencil map of a region, put six dots on the map- towns and villages, and fill in all of the other hexes only when the PCs explored them.

We’re back to this, and I for one, can’t wait.

However there’s no reason to wait, because it starts… Now.

Or else, in the next (but one) bit- the rest of this session.

This was the funniest session of D&D I have played for a good few years (most amusing, and happiest- everyone riffing off each other), and particularly (of course) Newt’s excellent summoning ceremony as described above. The rest of the session was also a joy to behold, but we’ll get to that.

Great work fellers- Merry Christmas, all.

Stay safe and well.

Cheers the Dark Squad and goonalan.
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