World of Terrabia

Atlantica Rising!
possibly defunct adventure

_It’s a bright and sunny day. It had stormed the night before, and the wind tosses the ocean’s waves onto the shore relentlessly, but on dry land it is peaceful and calming.

Iriai Roiyaru, a Dragon Mage of the Saurian tribe from Haz’Kodur, is walking along the beach. It is the first time she’s ever seen the ocean, let alone this much water in one place, stretching on as far as the eye can see.

She wandered here from her home a few months ago, passing through the city of Tuo’Rath, then west over the mountains to the merchant city of Portsmouth, where she spent the past few days sight seeing.

The city is a wonderful place, many sights and smells foreign to her, quite different from her home in the volcanic mountain in the court of the Dragon Lord. But the city is not all peaceful. Using the art of Enchantment, her mind has flitted from place to place and found many dark fears; fears of invasion.

Even now, walking along the beach of the harbor, she could see the square white sails of the Atlantican ships, just sitting still in the bay, broadsides aimed at the town. She had picked a poor time indeed to leave home.

The storm last night had crashed a ship against the reef, and today its cargo and debris is carried up onto the shore by the waves. Among them, she finds the figure of a man, lying prone in the sand. He is dressed in traveler’s clothes and leather armor, and carries two swords in his belt._

Joseph Sarrows:
“Ok lets see what happened last night….

I beat up that barbarian dude who tried to have his way with his new wife.Who was 14.

I helped her escape hardship…

Saw some racists beat on some elfs…

Beat up racists…

Ran from soldiers…

Hid from soldiers…

Found ten crowns in a bag in the forest…

escaped goblin trap…

snuck onto a boat…

Yup….thats when I got here in the sand…facedown…unconcious…Some storm…happened…or whatever I was asleep."

He got up.He looked around.He saw a saurian female and decided to got talk to her and make sense of what happened.

“Hey…where is this place?”

Iriai Royaru: Iriai looked at the man quizzically. “You’re one the western coast of Ravenwood.” she said, with a slight strange accent. “How’d you come to be here?” she asked.

Joseph: “No idea…but I shall be on my way.Do you know of any nearby towns?I must get to a city as soon as I can.”A nervousness in his voice.

Up the beach to the north you can see the walled city, Portsmouth. Debris clutters the sandy shore, and weaving their way through the wreckage are three men, being pursued by armed soldiers. You hear one of the soldiers call out “Stop them!”, and Joseph spots a lifeboat hidden nearby. The men seem to be running for it.

“We gotta help!”

Joseph engages the men.Finding out they are elves he lets them pass and talks to the soldiers.

“What are you doing?!”

_The three men reach the boat and shove off into the bay, rowing quickly, not along the shore toward the harbor opening, but toward one of the military boats in the middle of the harbor. The soldiers stop on the water’s edge, and the captain storms over to you. “You fool! Why did you let them escape? Those so-called elves were the Atlantican ambassador and his spies! Now that they’ve escaped, those ships in the harbor can begin barraging the town with impunity. Atlantica has declared war on the entire continent of Ravenwood!”

Walking over, the second in command explains further.

“You see, one of the Ambassador’s men is an illusionist, though, not a very good one. he was able to change their physical appearance to look like elves, but not their clothes. That’s how we spotted them.”_

Iriai: “Skilled in the art of Enchantment no doubt.” said Iriai, who had come up while they were talking. She turned to one of the soldiers, consumed in curiosity. “What is Atlantica?” she asked.

Joseph: “Oops my bad.Its um…a promise I made to a friend of mine.And I am with her…although I can’t say the name is unfamilar to me I am unfamilar with its origin.”

_The captain of the guard sputters and bellows a few more unintelligible phrases, including a few insults, before being gently encouraged to go rally the men by his lieutenant.

The lieutenant turns to you, arching his neck to look up at Iriai. “The royal city of Atlantica is that island out there.” He said, pointing out to the middle of the harbor opening at a collection of high walls and towers that seem to rise out of the sea. “They’ve taken it upon themselves to police these waters, but also enforce law here in Ravenwood as well, despite the existence of independent city states and provinces. They claim that there’s been an unbalance of power and are declaring war against the non-human races on this continent, and will roll right over anyone that stands in their way. We’ll be doing what we can to defend the town, but many civilians are going to leave, heading east over the mountains to the city of Tuo’Rath. They need to be warned that Atlantica is on the warpath.”

The lieutenant pauses for a second, looking the two of you over. “Say… you two look like able bodied youths, i have a proposition for you. Would you please escort our refugees to Tuo’Rath? There’s money in it for you. We need all the trained soldiers here to defend the city, but there are wild creatures and bandits along the road, they’ll need some looking after. What do you say? Will you do it?”_

Iriai: Nonhuman races….That means they’ll be after saurians too! thought Iriai. “I’ll do it.” she agreed almost immediately.

Joseph: “This is the first steps of adventure.It will be the first steps on the battlefield and the last steps when I reach my grave.Thats an old saying amongst hitchhikers who are given a job.It is said saying it will bring wealth and good tidings to the adventurer.It also means yes.”

Joseph stretched for a sec.

“Where are these people?I want to get started right away.”

The lieutenant scribbles a quick note on two pieces of paper and seals them with his signet ring, handing the letters to Joseph and Iriai. Pointing to the east side of the city he says: “Give these letters to the headmaster of the caravan, they will instruct him about your duties and payment.” Then he ran off to join his cohorts.

Joseph: “Come on!Oh by the way….I am Joseph Sarrows.”

Joseph did a small bow.

“What is your name?”

Iriai: “Iriai Roiyaru.” said the white saurian, her attention one the letter that had been handed to her a moment before. The paper was a creamy white with intricate designs on it, and the signet seal was red. “Alright, let’s go.” she said, twirling her quarterstaff and making the air thrum.

_As you round the corner of the southern wall you see a stream of wagons, horses, oxen, people, and various small animals and cattle pouring from the east gate along the main road.

You find a man waving the people along, he seems to have an air of authority, despite being of slightly portly build and wearing workman’s clothing and a broad rimmed straw hat.

As you draw near, he spots you and leaves the direction of traffic to one of his hired men. “Well, what have we here? A saurian and a human? Tell me lad, did this one fly you over the bay and drop you in? You look barely drier than seaweed!”

He chews on a stem of hay lazily while he waits for your response, but hefts a weighty hammer over his shoulder with considerable ease._

Iriai glared at the man coldly. “I did not! I found him on the beach!” she said. Then she glanced at the hammer, and made a mental note to keep an eye on it, in case it’s owner decided to swing it.

“And even if she did I like swimming I am young after all…tell me what time is it? It is adventure time my good man and thus we must go grab our friends and go to very distant lands so I bid you farewell.”

_The headmaster chuckles and his belly jiggles slightly and the tip of the hay sticking out of his mouth bobs up and down.

“You’ve got a lot of spirit, the two of you. What can I do for you?”_

Joseph: “We are here to help the refugees!My partner here has a signed order to prove it.She will just give that to you.”

_The headmaster accepts the letters and looks at them a second. “Ah, the lieutenant’s seal.”

Opening them, he reads the lieutenant’s hastily scribbled message and purses his lips. “Alright, that will do well enough i suppose. We’d been hoping for more skilled fighters to accompany us. Looks like you’re to be paid in full upon our safely reaching Tuo’Rath.”

“I don’t suppose you’ve been down this road before, except perhaps the lady here. It’s a day’s journey to the town of Stromburgh, we’ll be stopping there for the night. After that it’s a day’s journey up the Worldspine Mountain range, and another day’s journey down again, with only half a day between the mountains and Tuo’Rath. If all goes well, we should be able to make it there by noon on the fourth day.”

Looking behind him, he sees the last wagon pull away from the city, and the gates slam shut. “Alright! Looks like we’re off! Come get acquainted with some of the other guards as we travel.”

As you move away from the city, the sound of distant cannons echo across the water and over the city like rolling thunder. Luckily they were still to far away to hit the town, but that would change all too soon. A nearby refugee gasps, “we left just in time!”_

_You spot a young man, average height and build, moving down the caravan toward the two of you. His sword is in its sheathe, but his shield is on his arm. His wavy hair is tossed in the light breeze and a quick grin flashes across his face, but eyes retain a hint of alertness. You notice every few steps he takes he glances with one eye off to the south.

“You two must be the additional recruits! Welcome to our little tea party. My name is Peregrinus, and i’ll be your host this evening. Right this way ladies and gentlemen!” he says in a joking tone, and turns to keep up with the caravan, glancing over his shoulder to make sure you are keeping up._

Iriai: Iriai Was stunned by what happened. Everyone here might have been killed if they had stay for a few minutes more! she thought. She looked up when she saw Peregrinus walking up to them. She didn’t say anything, and wondered why he kept glancing Southward.

_the caravan proceeded to the east along the main road for almost an hour without incident, the constant sound of cannon fire echoing behind you. Looking back at the town, you see the blue glow of magic flashing periodically, it seems to coincide with the cannon fire as it hits the city.

As you march onward, glancing curiously toward the south you see occasional poofs of dust that erupt from the grassy plane, though you cannot see what is causing them.

Around midday, the report of cannon fire is reduced to mere rumbling in the distance, and the Worldspine Mountains loom before you, dark and misty on the eastern horizon. At their base, you see the dark green of a forest peeking into sight. Having come this way before, Iriai knows that the village of Stromburgh is there on the edge of the forest, and the caravan should reach it safely by noon the next day, if all goes well.

Unfortunately, it does not. Suddenly, two clouds of dirt and grass erupt from the earth next to the caravan. As the smoke clears, you see two, giant worm like creatures towering 35 feet over the road, one on each side. Their hides are tough and leathery, their backs covered in thick chitinous carapace, and their heads, eyeless gaping maws of teeth._

Peregrinus readies his sword and shield, shouting: “it’s the Terra Wurmlings! Quickly! They’ll eat the cattle!”

Joseph attempts a lunging attack.

The giant wurmling reels and thrashes about from the deep gashes inflicted by your short swords. It attempts to retaliate, lunging with its circular mouth to eat you, but misses.

Iriai made a flying rush at the huge worm and struck it across the face with her quarterstaff, manipulating the air to make it strike harder.

_Iriai’s charged attack knocks the wurmling’s head backward, slamming it into the ground. It’s body goes slack and stops moving.

The second Terra Wurmling hisses angrily at its mate being killed. Viciously, it retaliates against Iriai. Lashing out swiftly, it crushes her body in the maelstrom of her teeth.

Peregrinus sees Iriai’s bloodied body in the teeth of the monster and shouts: “No!”

Twirling his sword over his head, Peregrinus hacks his broadsword into the side of the creature with all his might, a fiery light in his eyes.

Over the next hill, a wingless Saurian appears running in the caravan’s direction. He has golden scales, short blunt horns, and is dressed in orange robes, a sword in one hand, and a staff in the other. An intent look is in his eyes, and you can see that his right hand glows with magic._

Iriai screamed in pain and rage at the crushing attack. She suddenly stopped when the gold saurian ran towards them.

_As the golden saurian drew close to the creature, he raised his hand. The air around his sword began to ripple and bubble, then the air seemed to draw close around the blade of the weapon as he aimed it at the wurmling, letting loose a jolting of invisible energy that hit the creature with such force that its body was knocked back so hard you could hear its spine snap.

Standing over Iriai, the gold saurian offers his hand to her.

The daughter of the great Dunadon? Fancy meeting you here. Come, let’s get you patched up, my lady.

Now that he stands closer, Iriai recognizes him as one of her father’s primary pupils. Though he never held any office of importance, you remember your father spending much time with him and Acting Primarch Scurdon.

The caravan master comes over to the four of you.

You all alright? We’re not going to make it to Stromburgh tonight, so we’ll make camp here. You’ll have plenty of time to rest up and heal your wounds. I think we have a healer in camp.

The sun has begun to set below the western sea._

Iriai’s eyes widened as she recognized the saurian before her. Wordlessly she took his hand and stood up slowly, painfully.

_That evening, the wagons circle up, campfires are lit, small groups gather everywhere to rest and eat.

As they sat around a campfire, a healer tended to Iriai’s wounds, Peregrinus ate his food slowly, savoring each bite of the small meal, and the Saurian sat opposite Iriai, firelight illuminating his golden scales brightly, and dancing in the darkness of his eyes as he stared at her intently, a pensive expression on his face._

“I had heard that you had disappeared from the city, your highness, but i did not expect to see you making a return journey so soon. Are you in fact returning home, or are you still journeying?”

“I’m not ready to go back yet.” answered Iriai quietly. “If I went back now, I’m sure my father will forbid me from ever leaving again.” Iriai glanced up, her purple and orange eyes that inspired her name were reflected by the fire like a flaming sunset.

Joseph looks over his shoulder several times throughout the meal.He has a frightened look on his face.

“Has anyone here seen a oh I don’t know…undead dragon?”

Peregrinus: “Undead Dragon! Aint no such thing around here bud. Though, i’ve heard tell of one over on the western continent, across the sea. Mostly unsettled territory and ancient ruins.”

A quizzical and unsettled expression comes across his face for a moment.

Peregrinus: “You… haven’t been there have you?”

_The golden saurian sits still, absorbing the fire’s warmth into his body.

“Far too cold this far away from the volcano, isn’t it? No, i don’t reckon Lord Dunadon would allow it at that. Though… you might not want to stay away for too long. He’s changed since you’ve left. He’s getting old, Princess Iriai. Far too old, and far too soon… Eveyone is worried he might not last much longer. Everyone, except that blighter, Scurdon. You know how eager he was to assume the role of Acting Primarch in your father’s stead. I think he’s just biding his time till he can assume the throne, permanently. And with you gone, there’s no one to stand in his way. Our Lord has many children, but he only blessed you with the Seal of the Empyreans, the royal birthmark.”

Gazing up into the starry night, he breathed a sigh.

“Tell me, what brings such a large company as this into the wilderness this time of year? The Festival of Spirits in the Human city, Tuo’Rath, was several months ago, and yet there were not this many travelers then.”_

“I’m just not ready yet…” repeated Iriai, looking away. When the other mentioned the company, she looked back. “Atlantica declared war on Ravenwood, and launched an attack on Portsmouth. These people just barely escaped.”

_"I see… That is most unfortunate. My own task takes me in that direction."

Turning his head to look at Joseph.

“Is this true? You were on the western continent? Tell me, this… undead dragon… was it in the frozen wastes, in a valley where the sun does not shine?”_

Joseph: “Yes…and if you know that then you must have a guess of to who I am?”

_The golden saurian closes his eyes and lowers his head, pensively.

“Who you are… Ah, yes, you refer to the rumor of the fabled Citadel of Lewt. So you are a treasure hunter then? And, by your reaction, you’ve found one of the sacred treasures? Other than that, I cannot divine any other knowledge about you, I am not a mind reader after all, and I am not well versed in… Human interests. Indeed, one of the four Dragon Lords held one of the sacred treasures required to open the gateway to that world. Though he has since disappeared…”_

Peregrinus suddenly interrupts.

“What? Another world? How did I miss this legend?”

He seems visibly disturbed by the thought, while the saurian cops a slight smirk.

_"There may be many worlds, boy, not all of them pleasant. As I was saying, the Dragon Lord who protected one of the thirteen sacred treasures has disappeared, and it has long been thought that he may have died somehow… This also pertains to my mission."

Turning to Iriai, he continues.

“As your highness should be aware, ours is a diminishing race, though the reason for it is unknown. Around the world our kind has been silently vanishing, as though some mysterious force were working against us, simultaneously throughout the planet. It is my duty to uncover this mystery.”_

Iriai stiffened. She was dimly aware of the fact her race was dying out, but she hadn’t quite realized the importance of it until now. Maybe she should help too.

After a night’s rest without attack, everyone fully healed. However, during the night you notice Peregrinus did not sleep well, but in the morning, he acts like nothing’s wrong.

As the caravan packed up to head on to Stromburgh, the golden Saurian packed his own meager belongings and prepared to head out in the opposite direction.

Before he left, he slipped a note over by Iriai’s bedroll where she could find it.

The note reads:

“When you reach Tuo’Rath, please visit an old man who lives there, by the name of Andre Crowsworth. Please give him my regards concerning the events that happened there. Be sure to ask him about the Grand Arcana. I don’t know what it is, or what it means, but people seem willing to kill over it. My own mission is too pressing to stop and investigate, and I’ll not encourage you to find it yourself, but keep an eye out for your own safety. The people involved in this have no scruples.”

As the caravan rolled out, the unnamed Saurian could be seen, walking resolutely toward the invaded city of Portsmouth in the west.

The rest of the day passed without event, and the caravan reached Stromburgh that evening, just as a storm began rolling in over the jagged peaks of the Worldspine Mountains to the east, and beyond them, Tuo’Rath._

Invasion from Atlantica
introducing new characters

Atlantica is invading the Continent of Ravenwood on a quest for power and the security of the Human race.

The Kingdom of Atlantica sees the proliferation of wizardry in Tuo’Rath as illegal action, breaking a treaty signed years ago since the last great mage war. They also take offense to the expansion of the Elves and Goblins from their normal habitats.

Their first action was to close the harbor, preventing merchant or military ships to access Portsmouth, a merchant city. Their second action was to occupy the city. From Portsmouth, the Atlantican forces will occupy each town between Portsmouth and Tuo’Rath.

Upon reaching Tuo’Rath, they will lay siege to the city, attacking the wealthy side of town to gain the support of the poor, vagabonds, and thieves that live in the city. Once they gain control over the city, they will take the Crystal of Truth to uncover any potential spies and saboteurs, then lay hands on the Magic Vault’s vast troves of magical artifacts.

After fortifying their position in Tuo’Rath, they will head south from Portsmouth and Atlantica to attack the Elven fort, Cirabel, along the coast to occupy it and capture as many Elves there as possible, to use as an entry way to Lorliriar.

Once in Lorliriar, the Atlanticans will attempt to uncover the secret of the Magespeak, and also learn to manipulate the tree, Ewa, to grant themselves fertile land and clement weather at will.

Saga of The Dragonborn
Forests of Travisburg

After your adventure in the haunted house in the city of Tuo’Rath, Merlin the Revenant wizard went into hiding to avoid debt collectors and undead hunters, while the Nameless One, a Saurian wizard, went his own way, following a task set to him since before the three of you met.

Since you were hatched from an egg found by a priest in a small village on the frontier of Gurzzle Swamp, you had always thought you were the last Saurian, all the rest of your breed had been slain by goblins. But upon meeting the Nameless One, you realize that there are other clans of Saurians in existence.

Perhaps your former mentor, Father Ridley, could shed some light about this. Also, before his departure, the Nameless One encouraged you to visit his homeland, the volcanic desert mountain of Haz’Kodur.

You begin your adventure in the city of Tuo’Rath, at the Starlit Sky Inn, where you’ve been staying since your arrival.

Dragonborn, being rested and also relieved from his mighty battle with Tolbert Crowsworth. He wastes no time. He feels like now is a better time than ever to head to his home town and seek out Father Ridley, one who raised him as a young Dragon Born. For more understanding about his past and what his destiny holds for him. Feeling alittle discomfort being the only Saurian left of his kind, to his knowledge, he will be wasting no time at all, He hopes to see his young warrior friends from battle again soon.

It will be a two day’s journey east from Tuo’Rath to the next town, Travisburg. You will then travel to Achan in the south before beginning the four day trek across the swamplands to reach Salien, the frontier town you were raised in.

Setting out from Tuo’Rath in the early morning Dragonborn soon enters the forest where he once before encountered the Wiley Kurt and his murderous bandits. Dragonborn knows he must keep his senses alert to make it through the night, or find a caravan to camp with, else he may wake up in the morning with his throat slit.

Darkness settles as Dragonborn walks carefully down the paved road through the woods. Around the next bend he can see the telltale dancing light of a campfire, and the careless echoing of laughter.

Could this be a caravan new to the dangers of these woods? Or are they the very bandits he faced once before?

DragonBorn gets close enough to see if they look friendly enough, if so, Still hiding in a bush close by an where not seen, he Yells in a friendly dragon like soft voice “Hello There!” Waits to see there reply and to see there faces.
" My Name is DragonBorn, I am Traving to Tuo’Rath a 2 day’s journey, and passing through, would you lads mind if I joind you for the night?"
If they seem friendly enough, DragonBorn will step closer into the light, if not…. We’ll see what happens.

Observing from the bushes, Dragonborn sees nothing peculiar about the travelers.

The group of campers look around startled at the sound of the Saurian Paladin’s call, but quickly call out: “Come closer friend, and join our meal!”

As Dragonborn steps out into the light, several of the men stand up and move over to greet him. “Welcome friend. Any fellow traveling these woods at night is a friend of ours!”

As the men draw close, Dragonborn gets a sense that they are not speaking the whole truth.

DragonBorn set an waits to see what these travelers seem like, he asks
“What brings you young men out here in the woods for? You men travaling as well, I’m traviling to Tuo’Rath! Have you all been there? Whats the best route to go my friends?”

Suddenly the men reach for their weapons. “C’mon! This is the one that killed our friends a few months back! Hehehe! Looks like you’re all alone this time, scaly!”

The bandits get the drop on Dragonborn, and six of them spread out to surround him, the one in front lunges forward with his sword. The savage strike deals a hefty blow that your armor just barely prevents from being more serious.

As the men continue to advance toward you, an arrow suddenly darts from the shadowy forest behind you and thuds soundly into his shoulder, causing him to reel back in pain. The others close in around him and begin backing away. The other two men waiting around the campfire drop their packs and grab their weapons.

Then, from the forest echoes a piercing screech that shakes the bandits to their bones, causing them to turn and run, leaving you, and their possessions, behind in the empty clearing.

From the shadows of the forest comes a voice.

“I apologize for accompanying you unannounced, Saurian, but I hope you can excuse me. My name is Eleazar. I want to thank you for freeing me from that prison many weeks ago.”

Dragonborn places his hand over his wound as he turns around. A white glow emmanates from his palm and you see the flesh bubble and cauterize, stitching the wound shut as new scales grow back into place. He then hefts his ruby shield up and rests his large, razor sharp axe on his shoulder, the firelight glints off the blade and his short horns, giving the Saurian a golden glow in the dense dark of the forest.

“Hail and well met friend! Come from the shadows so we may meet face to face!”

Taking slow, silent steps, the new ally makes his way out of the shadows. Just before he steps into the lighting, he cautions in his deep, raspy voice, “I warn you, some find the appearance of my race alarming…” Then he steps out to where the Dragonborn can see him, allowing his red eyes to gleam with their natural glow.

Into the clearing walks a figure mostly resembling a man, not tall by human standards, but not short either. You spy strangely designed shortbow and shortsword on his person, and his body is shrouded in dark clothes, tattered and ripped, leather armor covering his vital parts. His head is shrouded in a hood, and a black scarf disguises his features, but what shows around his glowing red eyes appears to be a dark void, bottomless and intangible, given form only by the clothes he wears. A coldness emanates from him, chilling the air as you draw close.

Flexing his newly mended muscles, the Dragonborn steps forward to tower over the stranger, a gentle but stern expression reaches his eyes.

“And rightly so may they be alarmed, though until recently i was commonly greeted with alarm as well. Greetings, men call me Dragonborn, for I was found among the ruins of a Saurian dwelling and raised among men by a cleric. What might your name be?”

“You may call me Eleazar, the outside world refers to my people as Spectres. I would not be offended if you have not heard of my people though, we do not often leave our homeland. I am one of the few.” Gesturing to the items left behind near the fire, “Shall see we what they left us?” His glowing red eyes turned up on the outsides in what could be assumed to be a smile.

Dragonborn explains his origins as the two of you pick over the pile of forsaken loot. The Saurian, who has no use for the sword lets Eleazar have it, but takes two of the food rations and a water ration for himself. Looking over the leather armor, he decides it’s not as good as what he has already. He feels no need for the healing potion or silver necklace.

“This road is actually the only clear path through Ravenwood forest that goes to and from the magic citadel Tuo’Rath and the town of Travisburgh. I am actually on my way back to my home on the frontier of the swamplands, where i was found by humans and raised by a cleric of the Brotherhood of Gisdael. It was he who taught me the ways of peace and healing.”

“As i was the sole survivor of my tribe, and raised by humans, i had no knowledge of my kind, and had assumed until recently that i was the only Saurian left in existence. When i set off to explore the world, i met another Saurian, a wizard with no name, so we call him the Nameless One. He told me of his own tribe that lives in a volcano to the north. So now i am returning home to inquire if my mentor, Father Ridley, knows anything of the northlands, or the Saurians who may live there.”

The two of you continue on down the road in darkness for a while before camping off the beaten path where hopefully no bandits will find you.

The night passes uneventfully, and the early rays of light in the east heralds the coming of dawn. The two of you make good time to Travisburgh, but find the town’s gates wide open, and unguarded.

Saga of Grimhammer
Journeys of Garrick Grimhammer

Thick wrists chained up to a wall, Grimhammer wakes to yet another day in the dripping prison cell. The smell of must and feces assail his nose constantly, and he no longer notices them.

As he comes awake Garrick looks around his dismal cell for the thousandth rime. “What in the name of Earth are you holding me for? I havent done ANYTHING!!!” But no one answers him this time, nor any of the previous times. He slumps into a semi-conscious state as the time passes until the guards come to his cell door.

After some time passes, the sounds of iron scraping against iron echoes down the corridor outside, and guards approach, unlock the iron door to his cell, and place Grimhammer in hewn stone stocks, transporting him out of his cell and down the corridor.

“I’m finally being releases from this hellhole? it took you long enough to realize you had an innocent man locked up!” he snarls as they come into the cell, but as they put the stocks on him instead of letting him walk free he comes to the realization that perhaps this isn’t what he thought.

Upon reaching their destination, Grimhammer recognizes he is in the halls of the Institute of Study of the World above Earth, and all of the board of directors are present, except one.

One of the directors, you recognize him to be Head Director Fagen, stands up to speak.

Fagen: Grimhammer, latest son of the bloodline Wurmslayer, you are hereby accused of the crimes as follows: breaking and entering into the ISWE laboratory, gaining entry without proper clearance, theft of research materials such as the forbidden Magestone, assault and battery against the person of Assistant Head Director Ksalinbourg resulting in his hospitalization and loss of consciousness, and the death of no less than three guards. How do you plea? (he waits for your response before continuing)

Grimhammer’s head swims a little, trying to remember when he could have done this. You remember getting particularly drunk one evening, passing out, only to wake up in the wet prison cell. Had you done these things?

Fagen: When you were arrested, purple Magestone were found hidden on your person, and we have witnesses who say that it was you who attacked those guards. This court finds you guilty of your crimes and you are hereby sentenced to death by beheading.

After a few moment’s pause, a peculiar grin tickles the corners of Director Fagen’s mouth.

Fagen: However… we will grant you a stay of execution on the following conditions. First, you will be exiled under arrest to the surface world above. There, you will travel as an ambassador of Motanheim, our city, to the world above, opening friendly relations with the cultures and peoples there so that we may study them more openly. Additionally, you will be permitted to return to Motanheim on parole provided you return with three items for the ISWE to study from the world above. We seek a Magic Hammer, a Magic Shield, and a Magic Compass. Find these three things, and we may permit you to re-enter the city. You are to begin by opening relations with the reptile people who dwell in the mountain above Motanheim.

Finally, you are to travel with an official from the Marshall’s office, if you do not return with him, you will not be permitted to enter the city. He will be keeping tabs on your progress and helping with the peaceful negotiations.

So, what is your answer, Grimhammer?

Stunned at a full conclave of judgment before him Garrick stares wide-eyed at the charges leveled at him, as soon as Fagan finishes the charges Grimhammer bellows,“What do I say? I say this while thing is a load of dung! I was never near the ISWE, much less inside of it! Bring forth these witnesses that they may accuse me to my face! This is a sham, where is my father? As clan head he has a right to be here, and as for your ridiculous charges! My clan had more money than any two of yours combined if we wanted Magerock why steal it? We could buy all we needed.” As for you Fagan, you’re just jealous of my father’s influence! You probably incited this whole thing you gutless wonder!!"

_The peculiar grin wavers but for a second on the face of the Head Director. Another man in the court room bellows indignity that Grimhammer would question the integrity of the council. _

Fagen: Bring forth the three witnesses!

Three thoroughly bruised guards step forward. The first one speaks up.

Guard 1: I was the first to see Grimhammer inside the facility. It was terrible, he was laughing as he knocked my comrade here to the ground.

Guard 2: I didn’t even see him hit me, but i sure felt it when i woke up. As i came to, i saw him clamber through a window as he made his escape.

Guard 3: I was with the second patrol to come across him. He killed all three of my patrol men, including our patrol leader.

Fagen turns from the three witnesses to face Grimhammer, that self satisfied smirk even more apparent than before.

Fagen: You asked before why you would steal Magestone from the institute. I don’t know why you would do it, but perhaps you’ve forgotten that they are illegal to possess outside the ISWE? And I wouldn’t count on your father’s influence saving the day. We’ve had enough of your drunken outbursts to satisfy all three cities in Deepenheim. It is fortunate for Motanheim the the other two cities have not heard of you, else they would likely think we’d all gone mad. Your family, strong supporter it is in time of war, has always been a thorn in the side of the scientific community in time of peace, and now we will set an example with you. So give us your decision, will you take our most generous offer and redeem yourself and your bloodline? Or will you face the beheading block?

Scowling ferociously at being moved into a position he knows is impossible to win Garrick spits,“Fine damn you to a cold hell, I’ll take your misbegotten offer you son of a goblin loving troll!”

“Court, dismissed!”

As the court room empties out, you notice Fagen walk to one side of the room to converse with two Dwarrow, one dressed in an officer’s garb, and the other in official robes, but not those of Motanheim. You suspect he may be from one of the other cities of Deepenheim.

After their conversation is complete, the officer walks over to you, keys in hand. He unshackles you from your stone stocks and introduces himself.

“I am Vark Treadstone, Under Marshal.”

Vark: Head Director Fagen has ordered me to accompany you during your exile. Come along then, our first stop is the ISWE stores. We’re to be outfitted with enough provisions to get us started.

The two of you leave the courtroom and progress to the storeroom. There you find a Puni (Vark’s pack animal) waiting. The two of you load up the Puni with three days’ food and water, two thick cloaks for cold or unfavorable weather.

Vark: Is there anything else you’d like to take? We’ll see if they have it.

Grimhammer: “Yeah, I want my axe and my armor from home. And do you have any healing poultices? because I hear the goblinoids are getting frisky this year.”, Garrick replies as he stretches his massive shoulders,“So what did you do to deserve getting sent with a convicted man on a death sentence?”

_Vark: Do? I am simply the most qualified. As for the matter of your weapons and armor, you may equip them as soon as we’ve left the city. We’ve had reports of Sloggots in the old tunnels outside town. _

You find 6 Healing Poultices (restores 1d10 Health when used)

Vark: C’mon then, let’s be off.

As you leave town, faces in the crowd that you recognize turn their gazes away, or cast disapproving gazes upon you. Voices you don’t recognize jeer and spit at you for the fun of it. The families of the slain guards weep and shout bitterly as you pass.

Garrick doesn’t respond to the crowd at all, keeping a stone face despite the reactions.

Upon reaching the outskirts of the city, Vark hands you a bag with your personal items in it.

Vark: Here, put these on, you’ll need them…

Vark looks grimly at you, and leads the way into the newly dug tunnel.

At the tunnel he puts on his gear and gives his huge axe a few practice swings before slinging it over his back in it’s carry sling. He then follows Vark into the tunnel resolutely.

The dark tunnel winds gently along an upward angle. Occasionally loose earth crumbles down from the ceiling, but the floor remains still, indication that there are no tremors threatening the collapse of the tunnel, or of burrowing creatures.

Ahead of you is the leathery rump of the Puni, not a pleasant sight, and the broad shape of Vark Treadstone. Aside from his traveling clothes and a dagger thrust into his belt, he does not appear to be wearing any other armor or weapons, yet his grim expressions and hardened lines on his face tell you he is indeed a well experienced fighter.

Eventually, the tunnel opens up at an intersection with another tunnel, this one appears have been made a long time ago, older than the earthen tunnel you were just in. At this point Vark stops and turns to you.

Vark: Our sonoscopes picked up a hollow vein in the bedrock, so we dug that tunnel to meet up with this one. (he looks to the right) That way leads down, we’re not sure how far, but we’re bound for the surface so… (he looks to the left) we’re going that way.

The tunnel is laid with a cobblestone floor, and the ceiling is supported with stone post and lintel, carved in the shape of some kind of serpent with arms and legs, their necks stretching across the ceiling and meeting in the center.

You continue your journey through the darkness, the way lit only by Vark’s lantern. Every now and then he glances back over his shoulder, but you’re not sure if it’s you he’s looking at, or if he’s looking for something else.

Garrick rides along quietly for the most past his only question,“What do you know about the magic items im supposed to find?”

Vark: you mean the hammer, shield, and compass? For some reason the ISWE has decided to announce the existence of Deepenheim, and the Dwarrow to the world above the earth. They have also become more curious about the items the overlanders use, those imbued with magic. I guess they’ve learned all they can from those blasted Magestones.

Other than that I’m as ignorant as you on the issue. However, i have some information that may be related. Our sonoscopes in Motanheim have been observing the reptile people that dwell in the mountain above us for years. We’ve observed their use of magic for some time now and, since it is the closest to our point of origin, it is the obvious place to start our search. I doubt we’ll find all of the items in one place, if even at all. I can’t imagine anyone foolish enough to just give away a magical item to a couple of complete strangers.

Our sonoscopes in Kreigenheim are situated under a fortified city of some kind. We can’t tell what race of people it belongs to, we’ve noted several kinds coming and going. They seem to have some kind of school of magic there, and we’ve found a network of hollow passages and rooms under the school.

Our sonoscopes in Soppenheim have also found a strange disturbance. Whenever our scientists there aim the sonoscopes to the northeastern surface, they can’t quite get a clear picture, it keeps changing. We think there may be great magic at work there, obscuring that area from view. We should try there as well, i suppose.

Grimhammer gives the other dwarf a slightly disgusted look," So this is a case of the deaf leading the blind then…phaw…what a mess the damn councils gotten us in." He looks up at the ceiling of the tunnel as if asking for divine help and then asks,“So let me make sure I understand this, we are going to a city of lizardmen to steal a magical item, then a citadel of unknown ownership to do the same and finally to a place that’s assumed to have powerful magic and about which we know next to nothing for the coup de grace?”

Vark chuckles quietly.

Vark: That about sums it up. Except we are also on a diplomatic mission as well, so stealing outright might not be wise.

Garrick replies,“I don’t know how else we’re going to get them unless you’re carrying alot more gold on you than it looks like or have the ability to mortgage half the city in payment.” The red bearded dwarf chuckles at this last idea.

The two of you continue on in silence for a while, the only sounds you hear are the plodding of footsteps and the occasional breaking of wind from the Puni in front of you. You also begin to notice soft dripping of water from the ceiling, apparently caused by condensation. It is also getting hotter in the tunnel.

After what seems like hours the tunnel comes to a dead end. Vark walks up to the wall at the end of the tunnel, staring at it pensively, and places his hand on it, thinking.

The Puni begins to act strange, staring wide eyed at the tunnel wall to your left, its skinny tail twitching agitatedly.

Garrick idles away the time humming and checking his gear to make sure everything is in proper place. As they pull up at the dead end he asks Vark,“I take it this isn’t supposed to be there?” But on notice of the Puni’s odd behavior he pulls his axe out and dismounts and quietly tells the warden," I think this might be a trap, the Puni’s are acting odd." Keeping his eyes on the wall he Puni is staring at.

As you stare at the wall, the floor begins to shake. Small stones jump and dance along the floor, and Vark turns wide eyed, looking over his shoulder at the wall.

Suddenly the wall bursts apart, sending a shower of stones flying. Out from the hole a creature rushes the Puni, striking the pack animal with full force, snapping its neck. The Puni falls limp to the ground, lifeless.

The large creature turns its crustacean body and faces Vark, and strikes at him with massive digging claw. Vark narrowly dodges the blow, which instead smashes through the wall at the dead end.

As the wall crumbles, a room is revealed, well lit with lamps, stocked full with jars of liquid and shelves of food.

Vark rolls out of the way, landing behind the creature and drawing his short blade. He shouts over his shoulder at you: “Attack the Sloggot from behind! That is its weak spot!”

As the crustacean charges Grimhammer let’s loose a warcry and charges in behind the monster and whips his greataxe around in a mighty blow.

Your mighty blow tears a cleft in the Sloggot’s backside, causing the creature to bellow and hiss in pain. Its blood dashes the floor and its flesh is torn wide. Tearing a leg off the dead Puni, the Sloggot limps backwards into the hole it came from, menacing its digging claws at you as it retreats munching on the leg.

Dust settles from the collapsed walls, blood flows across the floor, and the sound of many heavy footsteps reach your ears.

“Vark are you wounded?”,Grimhammer asks as the giant crustacean scuttles away. As the footsteps sound he looks warily around to pinpoint their direction,“well it looks like we have more company.” he grumbles

the Legend of Crowsworth

On its way to the citadel, Tuo’Rath, for the Festival of Spirits, the caravan gets attacked by bandits as they make camp for the night. The caravan is comprised of families; craftsmen, women, children, their cats.

The only men trained and equipped to fight the bandits aren’t exactly men…

Dragonborn, the Saurian Paladin from the northern badlands.
The Nameless One, an orphan Saurian Mage who travels with Dragonborn.
and Merlin, a Revenant Wizard and womanizer.

The three of them took a defensive stance between the bandits and the caravan, and as the thieves approached Dragonborn moved in on the left as the Nameless One flanked them on the right as Merlin assailed them head on.

Thrust into the mix, they had almost cut their way through the bandit ranks and to their leader, but the of the bandits, Wiley Kurt, sounded the retreat and escaped with most of his men, uttering an oath of revenge under his breath.

The rest of that night passed uneventfully and on the evening of the next day the caravan safely arrived at Tuo’Rath.

As they strode past the gates of the high walled city, Dragonborn, the Nameless One, and Merlin, the hustle and bustle of the marketplace hit them full force. People were everywhere, buying, selling, eating and drinking. Merriment was the face of the city.

The Festival of Spirits was well under way with people in masks and costumes parading about the blue-lamp lit streets. Games and attractions were on every corner and booths were lit with colorful lanterns.

They sifted through the crowd, all but ignored for their strange appearances, for Tuo’Rath has always considered itself to be the hub of trade and knowledge, and many visitors have come here from across the world, and not all of them human.

Whilst Merlin flirted with passing wenches, the Nameless One overheard murmured gossip about a haunted mansion open in the upper town residential district. Dragonborn, aware of the light weight of the group’s coin purse, kept his eyes peeled for job opportunities, as the pay off for escorting the caravan to Tuo’Rath hardly paid for the risks taken, and had even less of a chance of landing them all a separate bed for the night. And Dragonborn wasn’t about to share a bed with that rotting corpse, Merlin.

As the evening wore on, they noticed a few posters here and there, thinking nothing of it at first, but eventually their numbers grew until curiosity overwhelmed them and the wanderers took a gander at the posters.

As they read their eyes grew wide; the posters were asking for someone to help rescue people who had gone missing during the festival. One was posted by the sister of a young red-head who had gone off to work and never came back. The other was posted by a group of friends whose fourth member had gone missing in a haunted mansion attraction. The three adventurers read both posters and realized that the haunted mansion and the place where the girl had gone missing were one and the same.

They decided to head off to the house where the people had gone missing. Dragonborn was concerned about the missing persons, the Nameless One remained stoic but aware that there may be some occult reason for their disappearance, and Merlin was eager to meet this red-headed woman.

As they knocked on the door to the Crowsworth residence, uncertainty and fear crept into their hearts. Slowly the door opened and the butler, a large and imposing man answered, bidding them enter.

As they followed, they glanced down the hallway and noticed two maids standing there, their faces expressionless, eyes staring past the four of them as they walked down the hall.

And one of them had red hair.

At the end of the hall, the butler opened a thick door, and gestured for the three adventurers to enter. After several moments of hesitance, one by one, they did enter the small damp cellar. In the center of the room they spotted a glowing blue crystal, floating on its own and rotating very slowly. Behind them the door closed shut and locked, and as soon as it did, the blue crystal began to spin faster and faster till a bright light flashed before them, and the crystal disappeared.

As they searched the room they found that the way they came in was not only locked, but unbreakable. For all their pounding, the door would not budge. On the opposite wall, they saw a rotted, moldy tapestry depicting a small, white rabbit trotting down into a hole under a tree. Perhaps a forerunner of what was to come?

As they searched behind the tapestry they found a door, which opened. As they each passed into the dark room beyond, the door slammed shut behind them, and they were cast into darkness.

The moments passed briefly as they searched the room in the dark finding nothing, and unable to open the door. As they began to panic, the room shook, and the sounds of two or more creatures slithering into the room were heard.

In the darkness, two bodies could be felt moving about, their serpent like forms rippling silently in the inch of water covering the floor. Merlin was the first to feel one of them brush up against him, and he lashed out, cutting at the creature with his sword. The resultant hiss that screeched back at him told him he had somehow hit his mark, even though he felt only slight resistance to his blade’s edge.

The next one went after the Nameless One, and dealt him a solid blow, while Dragonborn rushed to his friend’s side, lashing out at the darkness in desperation to hit what could not be seen.

After a few moments’ frantic struggle, all was silent except the panicked breathing of the two Saurian adventurers. Merlin, the revenant wizard explored the empty space where the wall opened up and found some small herbs growing there. Recognizing their healing potential, he took them with him.

Finding that the door was now open, the three of them moved on to a room dimly bathed in a blue light, the source of which was a large cluster of mushrooms growing around a fountain set in the east wall. The adventurers took several mushrooms with them as a source of light, and drank their fill from the fountain’s waters, finding, to their surprise, that their exhaustion and soreness dissipated and they were filled with renewed vigor for what may lie ahead.

Seeing a solid wooden door leading to yet another room, they could find no way to open it, for it had no handle and no lock. The Nameless One searched around the room and found an odd knob protruding from the western wall, and when he pushed it the door opened.

Entering the next room, the door closed behind them yet again. By the light of the glowing mushrooms, the three of them observed a large gap and a door painted bright red with gold trim decorating it. The walls were earthen, and the ceiling crumbling dust on them as they stood there. Along the walls were old beams which appeared to be holding the ceiling in place.

As they stood there, the room began to shake, and the dust from the ceiling turned to pebbles, then to stones. Grabbing a loose beam from a corner, Dragonborn lay it across the chasm and darted across, with Merlin close behind him. Hesitating but for a moment, the Nameless One saw several creatures crawl out from the pit below.

Their appearance was as darkness itself, but wet, glistening with a shimmering light that seemed to simply bend around them rather than reflecting off of them. Their bodies seemed serpentine, but without a solid physical form, and in the dim glow of the mushrooms, evanescent.

With a sudden burst of energy, the Nameless One felt a slight wave of his power return for a moment. Seizing the opportunity, he let loose a magic wave of energy, jolting the creature from where it stood on the beam, blasting it into the earthen wall.

With great haste and death on their heels, the three of them escaped through the red door, and found themselves in an altogether different place than expected.

The three travelers enter a round room, and as they do, the door behind them closes gently and disappears.

The room is dimly lit by candle light, but bright enough to see. They notice a small window, and as the Nameless One sticks his arm out to try and squeeze through, something slimy brushes past his hand and he withdraws quickly.

With nowhere to go, the three of them examine a large book shelf that strangely contains only three books.

The first book they open reads as a journal, with many entries regarding a man’s son going off to the University of Magic to study. As they read they find that this son fell in with a bad crowd and was betrayed to death by them in their study of Animatus magic, only to be brought back to the world of the living as a Revenant.

The second book they opened contained a spell that activated upon its opening and summoned into the room two black creatures of shadow. Visible yet indescribable in the dim light, these creatures moved about swiftly and silently, their bodies disrupted by the blows of the three travelers till they became so disseminated that they simply ceased to be. Yet the three companions knew that their foes had not truly been banished.

Reading the second book magically lowered a stairwell down from the ceiling, and the three of them ascended the stairway.

Up the stairs they found a nearly barren room, containing only a small chest and a mirror that cast no reflection save that of the room.
As the Nameless One struck the window in the room he knocked loose some bricks and a small key fell to the floor. With the key they opened the chest and found three items. A lamp, another key, and a bag of gold coins. They also found that if they took two items that the third remaining item would disappear from the chest, so choosing carefully, they took the key and the lamp.

Standing in front of the mirror, Dragonborn found that he now cast a reflection in the mirror while holding the key, and upon touching the mirror, his hand passed through it, and upon retracting his hand from the mirror, the key had disappeared from his hand. No sooner had the key disappeared than the stairway down slowly slid its way up to the ceiling above them, and they could now move up to the next floor.

Stepping out into the new room, the travelers were startled to see six crimson robed figures standing around a bubbling cauldron chanting some spell. They found they could not interact with the six sorcerers, and stood helpless as the events played out in front of them like some sort of dream.

As the six sorcerers chanted, outside the window a blood moon rose into position, and the sorcerers became agitated. Loud thumping on the walls permeated the air, and suddenly a giant, rotted hand swept through the room, crumbling the walls and clutching the six sorcerers. The walls collapsed and the ceiling rushed down upon the three companions but stopped suddenly as the un-damaged section of wall rested firmly on the floor. Now a ladder that had been broken off half way up the wall was accessible, and the three continued their journey ever upward.

Finding themselves in what appeared to be the final chamber, they beheld a glowing blue crystal, exactly like the one they had seen in the basement of the old Crowsworth residence. Thinking this would be an opportune time to put an end to the madness, they struck the crystal, causing it to shatter, and as it did another creature of shadow appeared. This one appeared alone, but was enormous in size, towering above the eight foot Saurian Paladin, Dragonborn. Filling the room with its dark mass, the creature lashed out at the adventurers, and they fought back vigorously, their magical powers now restored.

Upon slaying the creature, the room spun around them and they woke up in a strange library, back in the Crowsworth residence.

As the three companions came to, they saw a young man, huddled in the corner, seemingly on the verge of insanity. When questioned, he would only utter the words: “no… no.. no… won’t leave… staying here.. not safe!”
They asked the student his name he responded: “Mik… Heel… must… find brother… Daavid!”

Merlin remembered that some of the missing persons’ posters around town were posted by a student named Daavid, looking for his brother Mik’Heel. So at last, they had found one of the missing persons.

Convinced that Mik’Heel would not leave, they thought it safer for him to remain there.

Examining the room before they left, the party found a letter, with their names on it.

“I am sorry for what you have been put through. My son has become a monster, an abomination. I wished to put him to rest but could not bring myself to do it. I believe he sensed my intentions however, so the only way i could put an end to his plans was to bring someone else in to do it for me. Even then he blocked me, using the people who came here for his experiments. He even put you in a magic trance, you’ve been in this study the whole time. Please, stop my son from destroying the lives in this city! Signed~ Andre Crowsworth”


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