*Cue track of ‘Carry On My Wayward Son’ by Kansas*
With the second portion of the campaign being played in a couple of weeks, I thought it would be prudent to provide the background on our heroes and the road they’ve traveled so far.
Raygar is the grandson of Torgar the Undying, a general in the rebel armies of the Dragonlord war. Fighting alongside Paladine and the Solamnic Knights, Torgar, and his Waraxe Cometfall, reigned terror over the Dragonlord armies. Torgar had become a legend among the dwarven clans and it is that legend that Raygar is trying to live up to. At 216 years old, Raygar is reaching the end of his peak physical years and is eager to prove that he can live up to his grandfathers name. With the legendary Cometfall at his side, Raygar has never wavered in the face of battle. However, given this time of peace, he has never had the opportunity to be truly heroic. Upon receiving a mysterious letter inviting him on a journey, with the fate of the world in the balance, Raygar is hoping this is the chance he has been looking for to write his name in the history books and make is family proud.
While still relatively young by Elven standards, Draeda is 852 years old. Having been born during the final push to extinguish the nightmare, she has seen what evil can do to the land. Trained as a druid by the elders of her people, the Kagonesti of the Western isles, she is more in tune with nature than any other species on the planet. When the Chromatic Dragonlords seized control of much of Krynn, she, and her people, faded into the wilds. When the call went out from Huma Dragonbane himself to stand and fight, she refused to take part, believing that neither side was in the right. Deemed a nomad and a lone wolf by even her own people, Draeda has kept to herself since the dragons disappeared from the planet, taking most of the wild magic with them. She learned the skills necessary to track and hunt while maintaining her own seclusion from all outside influences. When she awoke on the eventide in her camp, this letter was sitting beside her bedroll. noticing that none of her traps nor her familiar had been disturbed she wondered what could have left the letter. She decided leave her seclusion and re-enter the world to discover what this mysterious stranger has in store for her and gain more knowledge in her quest.
On the island of Northen Ergoth high in the Vingaard Mountain ranges lived a clan of fierce orc warriors. One of them, Dragmaur, was the leader of their elite warriors. For generations they were constantly at war with the giants that inhabited the mountains and surrounding hills. Dragmaur lead many missions to push back the giants and bring some peace for his people. One night, Dragmaur and his elite warriors conducted a night raid on the giant camp, in the raid, Thragmar, the only son of the Giant king, Throngir, was slain. Wracked with grief and filled with a burning rage, Throngir assembled the remaining fighting giants in the mountains and laid siege to the Dragmaur’s clan’s stronghold of Narzulbur. The siege of Narzulbur was long and bloody. It ended with Throngir and Dragmaur going head to head in single combat. Throngir ended the battle, striking Dragmaur with a mortal wound, crushing his chest cavity with his mighty warhammer. Dragmaur laid there among his fellow dead orcs bleeding and crushed. His clan of orcs were destroyed, their stronghold sacked and in ruins. Throngir and his surviving giants left Dragmaur to die of his wounds amongst the bodies of his kin. Dragmaur’s final thoughts were full of regret, that had he not slayed Thragmar, his clan might still be alive. With his last few breaths and his vision fading, a mystical figure appeared gleaming in light and silver enameled armour. The figure knelt down and placed his hand upon Dragmaur’s chest. Instantly, oxygen filled his lungs and he was able to breath. Dragmaur rose to his feet healed of all of his wounds. Dragmaur dropped to one knee pledging his life to his mysterious savior who vanished in a flash of white light. A year later Dragmaur now roams the lands cleansing it of evil and helping the poor and weak keep their lands safe from pillaging. After routing out a group of particularly brutal bandits threatening a peaceful village in Anchorge, Dragmaur found a mysterious letter in his pack stating to meet in the Inn of The Last Home in Solace. Dragmaur left for Solace at dawn riding his only companion, his warhorse Hank.
Thoramin – From an conclave of clerics in the secluded forests of the island of Northern Ergoth. The enclave spend their days meditating, practicing healing magic, weapons training, and trying to live peacefully among nature. They avoid conflict and violence at all costs, reserving themselves for the ‘final battle’ – originally the reason for forming the conclave, but now just a vague prophecy.On night when he returned home from a trip to the village to the south, he found a band of halfling thieves inside his house. Driving them off, it wasn’t until he was alone that he noticed his brother was kidnapped. He returned to the conclave to request help to return his brother home. The enclave, forever strapped by the bureaucracy that is destroying it from within, refused to assist him in retrieving his brother, so he went on his own. By the time he found the camp, the raiders had lit the sacrifice pyre. Unable to save his brother and consumed by rage, he sliced through their entire clan, cleansing the forest of their evil. With his anger compounding upon itself with every strike of his longsword, he forsook his vows and allowed the rage to consume him. The rage flowed through him into his sword and was not sated until the husk of every man women and child was also on the pyre.Because of his use of violence the conclave refused his return – because of their bureaucracy he didn’t return anyways. Having seen the effects of true neutral behavior, and feeling the full guilt of his unholy actions, he sought atonement with the followers of the God, Kiri-Jolith, the Sword of Justice. He began to devote himself to action against evil at any cost. After years of atonement, and with the guilt of his rampage still on my conscience, he felt the call to begin traveling the greater world – seeking adventure and to bring the word of the mighty Kiri-Jolith to the masses. Having discovered the letter in his pack he took this as a sign from his God and began the journey to Solace to meet the mysterious benefactor at the Inn of The Last Home.
Thurman – Born at the highest point in the Dwarven Kingdom of Grondir, the son of Queen Mira and King Thurman II, Thurman III was destined for great things from an early age. As is custom with all births in the Dwarven kingdom, Thurman III was reviewed by the holy oracles of Majere. Upon conclusion of their review it was foretold that while he would be responsible for greatness, he would suffer immensely with his personal relationships both Dwarven in nature and with other races. This hindrance came to fruition in his youth where he was also bullied for not listening and doing things his own way. While he was attending the Dwarven Academy he excelled in woods craft and nature lore. Able to analyse any terrain instantly and familiarity with almost all creatures that inhabit those regions, he finished at the top of his class. His social awkwardness was a hindrance to him being able to craft meaningful relationships but not in his ability to track or hunt. For all his work he did helping to catalog the western region of Grondir and his aptitude in his schooling Thurman III was gifted on of the Seven Elemental Stones of Majere, while being tasked with finding the others. As he exited the kingdom of Grondir he was approached by a messenger bearing a letter requesting his presence at the Inn of the Last Home in Solace. Tucked in with the letter, he was surprised to find a single white chicken feather.
THE ROAD TRAVELED SO FAR
Our heroes congregated at the Inn of the Last Home where they were met by their mysterious benefactor Fizban the Fabulous, a dottering old mage who somehow knew everyone despite never seeing them before. Fizban explained that the legendary sword of Huma Dragonbane was being used in a nefarious ritual at the tomb of Lord Soth to allow The Nightmare to be unleashed again. As he showed our heroes a vision of the sword being used to access the Nekro-plane, several goblins who had been disguised and listening while seated at another table in the inn, attacked. Dragmaur provided close protection for Fizban while the rest of the heroes dispatched the goblins taking very little damage themselves. Fizban thanked them for their helped and disappeared from sight in a flash of light. The heroes headed east out of town on the path described by Fizban. As they neared the massive boulder on the right side of the road, Thurman found the game trail and the party proceeded into the woods. As they neared a clearing they stopped on the edge of the woods and observed the entrance of the tomb of Lord Soth. Several goblin patrols were guarding the entrance which our heroes engaged in combat. After a misfired ‘Grease spell’ form the party’s freelance Sorcerer that struck our heroes, they were able to defeat the goblin patrols and enter the tomb.
As the heroes made their way through the tomb dispatching several more Goblins in a hodge podge camp they set up in a prayer room, they turned down a long corridor. As they ventured down the corridor they noticed a pressure pad on the floor. Not wanting to trigger any traps they argued as how best to proceed before Draeda’s wolf companion jumped on the pad. Spears sprang out from the sides of the hallway and struck the wolf wounding it enough for Draeda to use some of her magic to heal it.
As the party came to a door, they could hear the sound of blades being sharpened. As they peered in they didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary except for some stone piled in the corners of the room and another door on the far side of the chamber. Raygar and Draeda ventured across the chamber while the rest watched on. As they neared the door on the far side of the room, they were set upon by unknown creatures that looked like rocks with six blade like legs. These creatures seemed to hunt by sound and remained immobile sharpening their legs when not actively attacking. Through some quick thinking and a few spells, the party made it through the room and entered the Throne room to encounter a Goblin Chieftain and his hobgoblin honour guard. After a pitched battle wherein a mortally wounded Thoramin was saved by Draeda and her magic, the heroes managed to defeat the Chieftain and claim the tomb for the Gods of light.
As they searched the throne room, Draeda discovered an inscription on the dais behind the throne. The inscription read “I open for those of the wild”. Through some trial and error, Draeda and her compatriots discovered that the language needed to answer the riddle was Draconic. After uttering the Draconic word for ‘open’, a portion of the wall slid to the side revealing a small passageway that descended into darkness. As the party journeyed down the passageway the temperature dropped and a faint green glow began to shine from around the final corner of the passage. As they entered into the room at the end of the passageway, they discovered it was a tomb for several knights and one knight of particular importance. In the middle of the room the sword of Huma was suspended in the air and a portal that was emitting the green light was open on the ground. Through it, was a greenscape pockmarked by bolts of lightening and a Large Black Dragon watching as more of the rock creatures came through the portal. The heroes deciphered that the portal was being held open by the sword and moved to close the portal, which in turn shattered the sword. With the portal closed, the heroes moved towards the large sarcophagus at the end of the chamber and read the inscription “Here Lies Lord Soth”.
Raygar pushed the lid off the sarcophagus and a darkness filled the room. A dark shape with glowing red eyes emerged and said “I am Nekros, Lord of the Void. Bow before me.” Draeda bowed in reverence while the others remained steadfast. The shadow moved out into the chamber and said ” You are all of you, beneath me. BOW!” with that, the other members were forced down into a bowing position before Nekros parted the chamber taking with him the cold temperature and the darkness.
Finding a staircase out of the chamber they emerged near the entrance of the crypt and exited back out into the clearing. As they healed themselves and Dragmaur’s horse Hank, they looked to the west. As they turned their gaze westward their mouths dropped open in shock, Solace was burning.
That’s where we are currently in our ongoing Dungeons and Dragons storyline. For the setting of the campaign, check out my previous post titled “Campaign Setting”