Far Primus

The Hospice
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4th of Nerull, 564 QC

With Ishani and his Cuthbertian guards acting as an escort, the party (Dazzetaine Deepfury, Therani Woodlight, Gorok, Miles Fairchild, and Ilyan Durani) made their way to The Hospice, hoping to finally find out who or what was behind the Blood Veil in Ghalt. They bluffed their way into the sick ward and searched around for a minute or two before Daze was involved in an altercation, which quickly escalated to an all-out battle amongst the dead and dying. The party struggled against a contingent of Queen’s Physicians and Grey Maidens. Just as the battle seemed to be turning to their favor, a black-armored hulk appeared in the catwalks above them. He identified himself as Payne Trayne before charging at the heroes with two fire-breathing hounds in tow and more Grey Maidens trailing behind him. A couple of Ishani’s guards and many Blood Veil patients died in the process, but the party eventually defeated the Hospice guardians. Payne Trayne fell under a hail of arrows from Therani. After the battle was over, the party interrogated a couple of the Physicians and did some investigating around The Hospice. They discovered that Dr. Davaulus was probably here, in the basements below. They also discovered that he had been conducting research on the patients that wasn’t necessarily focused on finding a cure. So, they took a freight elevator down, intent on finding some answers to their questions…

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The Direption

2nd – 4th of Nerull, 564 QC

The party quickly fled the scene of the burning manor with their laughing prisoner in tow. Before leaving, Miles Fairchild ran back into the mansion, pulling out an unconscious and deathly ill gnome.

The next morning, they interrogated their female prisoner, learning that her name was Jolostina. She claimed to be the daughter of the Carowyns. She also claimed that she was to deliver the recovering gnome, who’s name was Grakar Foechuckle, to a warehouse in the West Docks the following day. For the second half of the day, Miles Fairchild, Therani Woodlight, Ilyan Durani, and Dazzetaine Deepfury decided to investigate the ship that had been recently sunk near the North Bridge.

With the help of an arcane spell of water breathing, the party spent a couple of hours investigating the wreckage, learning that the ship’s name was The Direption. They also discovered that it was being inhabited by some hags, whom they not-so-easily dispatched. Once inside, they found evidence of the plague boxes, the possible involvement of a cult of Nerull, and some paperwork naming an M. Blackweather as the owner of the boat.

Their naval investigations complete, they decided that their next stop would be the old Arkona Imports warehouse, which they knew was currently being used as a hospice by the Queen’s Physicians. They felt certain that this Mortimer Blackweather could be found there, and they had some questions for him. They even convinced Ishani Dhatri to join them.

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Party Time
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2nd of Nerull, 564 QC

It was a long day.

It started when the party decided to infiltrate Griggigz’ brother Ares’ hideout in North Point. For the first time since arriving in the city, everyone was healthy. Gorok, Dazzetaine Deepfury, Therani Woodlight, Miles Fairchild, and Ilyan Durani descended into the sewers beneath Ghalt to ask Ares some questions. They fought their way through a bunch of wererats to his hideout, only to discover that Ares, too, was a lycanthrope. They had a… tense… conversation and discovered that Ares was near North Bridge when the rogue ship was destroyed over a week ago. He still had one of the boxes he fished out of the water after it happened. It contained a dead rat, a coin, and a broken vial. It also stank of disease, and Ares guessed that this was the original source of the Blood Veil. The party grudgingly accepted this information and allowed Ares to live. They had places to go.

Later that evening, as the sun set on Ghalt, the party took a carriage to the Carowyn Manor, to attend a masquerade ball that Miles had gotten them invited to. They were expecting an evening of hobnobbing with the upper crust of the city; a chance to talk their way into The Acadamae. Instead, they stumbled into a massacre days in the making. All of the guests appeared to be dead, either by claw, arrow, or disease. A few were even re-animated as walking corpses. The party investigated the manor and were eventually able to track down the only living creature that remained: a mischievous, spell-casting harlequin. After she nearly killed Ilyan, they cornered her in a room and set it alight, only to have her burst out and try to escape. However, with the help of Miles’ arcane restraints, they stopped her.

And so, they found themselves in the great ballroom of a manor that was slowly burning down around them, with a giggling, painted prisoner in their hands.

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Corpse Eaters

1st – 2nd of Nerull, 564 QC

The party returned to the Stoneforge Guildhall with a sick prisoner in tow to find out that they had a message waiting for them from the Field Marshall. She wanted them to investigate a corpse dumping ground somewhere in Old Ghalt. They found out from their prisoner, a gangster named Griggigz, that Old Ghalt was under the “protection” of his brother, Ares. He even told the party where they could find him. That evening, the party (Dazzetaine Deepfury, Gorok, and Therani Woodlight) traveled to Racker’s Alley to investigate the dumping ground. They discovered a mound of disease-ridden corpses piled up against an old abandoned toy store. After exploring for a while, they were beset by a quartet of vampire spawn. This led to a drawn-out battle that ended in a tight crawlspace beneath the toy store. Despited being driven to exhausted and near death, they drove the spawn back to their coffins and staked them in their blackened hearts. Before destroying the final vampire, they managed to force out a name associated with the growing plague in the city: Dr. Mortimer Blackweather

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Down with the Sickness
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29th of Eryth – 1st of Nerull, 564 QC

Ilyan Durani awoke the next morning finally feeling well enough to join the party again, while Gorok and Therani Woodlight were laid low by the same symptoms afflicting the little girl. Miles Fairchild, Dazzetaine Deepfury, and Ilyan spent the day exploring and learning more about Ghalt. They also discovered signs of a disease spreading throughout the city.

The next day, they were invited to a meeting with Ishani Dhatri at The Grand Vault, where they discovered the true extent of the problem. They met with Field Marshall Cressida Kroft and the Queen’s Doctors, and were informed that there was an outbreak of Blood Veil in the city, and that a quarantine had been announced. No-one would be allowed in or out of Ghalt until the outbreak was resolved.

The party spent the next couple of days trying to help an overwhelmed Ishani with some of the city’s more pressing needs. This included a visit to a shop named Lavendar that was selling a supposed cure for the disease. They “procured” a sample for Ishani, and met with him to let him know. On their way out of that meeting, they were accosted by a seedy man and his thugs. He was clearly sick and looking for treatment from the party, and he wasn’t asking nicely. After a short battle amongst a panicking crowd, the man was lying unconscious at their feet.

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To Ghalt

18th of Pelor- 28th of Eryth, 564 QC

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The trip was long, and relatively uneventful. Besides the Chuul ambush near Lan’Gess, and some waterlogged hags who tried to sneak away with a few crewmen near Ghalt, The Roebuck made it to the great metropolis in a little over three months with a minimum of fuss. There was a bit of an issue with an unexpected river inspection, but the party (Dazzetaine Deepfury, Therani Woodlight, Gorok, and Miles Fairchild) managed to disembark and set foot on Ghaltian soil on the 27th of Eryth. They were heartily greeted there by the local Stoneforge representative, Grau Stoneforge, and were given decadent lodging in their guildhall. The next day, Miles and Gorok trawled around North Point, trying to find Noble connections who might help them get into The Acadamae, while Daze and Therani traveled with Grau to a humble home outside of the city were a little girl lay dying of an unexpected disease. Daze and Therani were able to help the little girl, gaining the admiration of one Ishani Dhatri, a local priest of St. Cuthbert.

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Ghostbusters

11th – 18th of Pelor, 564 QC

… and they ran into more trouble. Ilyan Durani was overtaken by the unnatural stench below, and he returned to the surface. However, the rest of the party (Gorok, Therani Woodlight, Miles Fairchild, and Dazzetaine Deepfury) continued further underneath Old Man Zander’s home, eventually spilling out into an ancient cavern filled with the boiling stench of rotting peat. They found two haunting ghosts there, and put them to rest. The overpowering stench receded…

The party spent the next few days in Lan’Gess resting and searching for a few items of interest. Margrick Shortstone was able to translate their book, pointing them towards something called The Blind Path, which apparently led the way to Tondar’s Prophecy. He also recommended that they search out one Grakar Foechuckle in Ghalt, as he might be interested in the book.

After 4 days in Lan’Gess, the party secured passage on the Roebuck, captained by a Sayyid Al Hura. They set sail on the 15th of Pelor, heading northward on the river Ghaor. In a little over three months, they would hopefully be in Ghalt.

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A Favor in Lan'Gess
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29th of Fharl – 11th of Pelor, 564 QC

The party (Gorok, Therani Woodlight, Miles Fairchild, and Dazzetaine Deepfury) left Echeron on the 29th of Fharl, starting a months-long trip north to Nall’Morangar. Their first major stop was going to be Lan’Gess. A few weeks into their trip, they encountered a strange wandering elf from Elvenhome, Ilyan Durani. While conversing, they were ambushed by a gang of elven Nameless, led by a female druid. They defeated and killed all of their attackers, but they were unable to suss out a reason for the attack.

As Ilyan was headed towards Ghalt anyway, he joined the adventurers, and they made their way to Lan’Gess. They stayed at the Stoneforge Guildhall. The trade representative there, Ulmaline Stoneforge, convinced the party to investigate a ghost haunting in a nearby building. It was an old collapsed shop that had once been the home of an Old Man Zander. In exchange, Ulmaline would connect them with Margrick Shortstone, a gnomish scholar who would help them translate a mysterious book they had found in Kherrihm. The party agreed to the exchange.

After some preparations at a Temple of Pelor, the party descended into some ruins they found underneath Old Man Zander’s destroyed home. Down below, they discovered a strange black slime, an overpowering stench of rotted and burning peat, and the diseased claws of slavering undead. After they spilled out into an ancient crypt, they were surprised and fought off a gang of starving ghasts. They then powered up a number of magical defenses, and set off to explore deeper into the unknown…

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Next Steps

23rd – 28th of Fharl, 564 QC

The party (Gorok, Therani Woodlight, Sir Edward, Miles Fairchild, and Dazzetaine Deepfury) had managed to retrieve the fabled Brazier from mines of Kherrihm, but Shaela had betrayed them and made off with the Hands of the Holy. A mixed result, to say the least.

During the three-day trip back to Echeron, they had plenty of time to collect their thoughts and ponder their next steps. The Stoneforge brothers spoke to the party about the brothers’ upcoming trip back to Nall’Morangar, and the possibility of paying the adventurers to escort them there. Just before reaching Echeron, Sir Edward separated from the group. He was disappointed with his failure to retrieve the Hands for Heironeous, and vowed to chase down Shaela wherever she may be. His first stop would be Lan’Gess.

The party spent a couple of days in Echeron resting up, doing research, and selling off various items they had found in Kherrihm. On the evening of the 28th, they met with the Stoneforge brothers in the Stonehill Inn to talk about the specifics of their trip back to Nall’Morangar. During their meeting, a mysterious orc named Bolo showed up, claiming to know the location of their friend Sildar. Before the party could finish asking him questions, some of the Regent’s men showed up and a separate group of carnivorous plant-life started attacking the inn shortly thereafter. There was a sprawling battle that ended with a half-burned inn, a dozen innocents killed, and Bolo suffocated in the innards of a shambling mound. If there was something else Bolo had to say, the party would never know.

They decided to head off the next morning, escorting the Stoneforge brothers on their long trek back to the dwarves’ mountainous northern kingdom.

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Miles Fairchild

Miles, feeling more reflective than usual as of late, has begun work on his memoirs. Working Title: “A Man of Vision, The Miles Fairchild Story.”

Notes for the return to Echeron chapter: Well, I got paid. Two hundred and fifty lousy gold for six weeks of near-death experiences. I suppose it wasn’t all bad. Not ready to write about her, though.

As it turns out, that Gnomish book I found is a first edition copy of “Burbrik Steamspanner’s Long Walk Along the Blind Path: An Illusionist’s Impeccable Guide to the Mysteries of the Unseen.” Quite rare, I gather. I’ll need to find someone to help me read the damn thing, though. Had a lovely dinner with Halia of Thornton. Very classy lady. Lots of wine. Accidentally burned down a tavern when it was attacked by monstrous living trees. Whoops! Oh, and I bought a horse. His name is Lucky.

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The Mines of Kherrihm: The Forge
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22nd – 23rd of Fharl, 564 QC

Having their first encounter with the Black Spider, the party (Gorok, Therani Woodlight, Sir Edward, Miles Fairchild, and Dazzetaine Deepfury) regrouped, rested, and returned to the mines of Kherrihm. They found another, more secretive route back to the Black Spider, and managed to ambush the bugbear guards protecting the path. However, the Black Spider was waiting for them. They parlayed for a bit, and convinced him to allow them to return to their camp with his servant, Vyerith, to retrieve the second map from Gundren. They did so, killing Vyerith, and laying a trap upon their return. The battle was short, and the Black Spider was killed while being held down by Sir Edward.

Afterwards, the party traveled on to the Forge itself, in another part of the caves. There, they encountered a restless spirt and a slavering ball of eyes protecting the Forge. They quickly dispatched these guardians, and used their two arcane dwarven maps to break into a back room of the Forge, where they discovered a glowing mace and a fine set of filigreed gauntlets. Just then, Shaela appeared in the Forge doorway, demanding that the party hand over the gauntlets. They refused, and the battle was joined. The bard drew a menacing-looking greatsword that vibrated and hummed, filling their minds with overpowering divinity. They struggled valiantly for as long as they could, but were eventually overcome. Through the eyes of his owl, Miles watched helplessly as Shaela pulled the gauntlets from Sir Edward’s unconscious hands and walked out the forge.

It would be another hour before the party would regain their senses, by which time Shaela was long gone…

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