Loudwater Times

NRC - Carnival Now?

[VERY LATE adventure synopsis…] Having been told by their dwarven hirelings that Ankhegs were interfering with bridge-reconstruction, the Knights of Loudwater investigated, finding a dank and terrible Ankheg warren filled with the powerful vermin, controlled it seems by a dark force! Brianor was almost entombed in a wall, and there were a few close calls, but the party made it out okay with a clue:

A small statuette of Loudwater, glazed a brilliant fresh-blood red. Craffmaster hypothesized that this was part of a set of curse foci. A curse would certainly explain the ill fortune of Old Loudwater once the invaders had past!

Seeing no further angle to investigate, the party ventured to town, where the locals were busily preparing for the Carnival, to start in just a few short days. Here they discovered Brother Griffon was missing, and following a trail of odd attacks on outlying farm-holds, they are busily on the track of what appear to be werewolf attackers. Can they find the lair and save Brother Griffon?

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NRC - Roadtrip

Our intrepid adventurers, having successfully cleared the Deeandee family crypts were summoned to the mayor’s office. Here they were made an offer no gold-loving land-grubbing group can resist. In exchange for a little… maintenance, their group would be granted the noble titles of “Knight of the Bridge.” While there were certain, “responsibilities” attached to this grant, the really important part was that they would be granted the right to charge tolls across the bridge!

This sounded like a great opportunity and Kilshandra and Regnant were excited to go check out their new, “station in life.” As it turned out the bridge was just over a mile out of town, in the middle of the ruins of Old Loudwater, with a conspicuous piece missing from the center. Even worse, when Kilshandra climbed up to the top to survery the damage she knocked a piece of the bridge lose and fell down with it, headfirst, into the stone-filled river below. Regnant immediately jumped into the river in an attempt to rescue her. Unfortunately he was wearing heavy armor with his full compliment of weapons. They will both be sorely missed, though happily their replacements were quickly found in the form of Naivara Durethil and Ivan Dragofire.

With their new friends in tow, the Knights of the Bridge settled on Mithral Hall as a good place to find some dwarves to repair their bridge so that they could start raking in the dough. Possibly protecting a caravan in the process. Somewhere.

Getting to Mithral Hall wasn’t too hard, a little digging into the old geographic knowledge, some questioning of locals, jumping of pits, fording of streams… and before anyone knew it they arrived at the magnificent hidden gates of proud Mithral Hall. Forty feet tall and bedecked in mithral sculpture, topped by the glorious foaming mug standard of the Battlehammer clan.

Inside the party discovered three potential dwarven groups ready for hire and building. Having no ready source of cash to hire any of these, the fortitious discovery that the barrel gleaned in the previous adventure was in fact the fabled Draught Barrel of Breunor Battlehammer allowed the bargaining to come to a successful conclusion as a raptured priest of the Hall talked not one, but two building masters into helping the Knights.

Of course to repay the favor they had to kill some nasty Bainite-worshiping no-good-nicks, and a few piddly drow, but you can’t build a bridge without cracking some rotten eggs.

Along the way Naivara picked up an awe-inspiring Greatbow, Ajar found himself a sturdy but richly worked hammar, Craffmaster acquired a glorious cloak, and Brianor felt that perhaps his claw-gloves were yet more than they appear…

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NRC - Community Service Pt. 2

Popping their heads up from the crypt chambers, the party was surprised to find a cultist carrying chips and a floating beer barrel just entering the aboveground mausoleum. Somehow they managed to convince the cultist that they were visiting cultists, part of an exchange program or something, and then promptly ambushed him. Unfortunately it turned out that the beer keg was floating in a gelatinous cube, which then proceeded to wipe the floor (ha ha) with the party nearly taking them all out.

Of course, in the end, they did end up with a nice magical beer keg!

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EM - Who let him in here?

The Zitharists have a particularly eventful meeting as not only do they have actual intelligence concerning the odd activities surrounding the Mercenaries and their foes, but they also have a surprise guest to question!

  • Alnor – Test 1
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NRC - Community Service Pt. 1
No more bandits, left, what to kill now?

Get out of My Crypt, Rotten Kids!

Lord Deeandee’s family crypt is once-more overrun with an evil cult. He wants the bastards taught a lesson. A permanent lesson. The tomb is a two story place with four encounterable locations. The upstairs is clear when the Loudwater Mercenaries show up and has a small staircase leading downwards for access.

You enter the crypt using Lord Deeandee’s key, an ornate metal device emblazoned with the mark of his house. The crypt door swings silently on well oiled hinges revealing a clean and neat space with a hatch in the middle of it. The hatch opens to reveal stairs leading downwards. The room is somber and utilitarian with little in the way of ornamentation beyond the symbol of House Deeandee carved into the cardinal walls.

The midden heap in the middle of the dungeon holds dozens of skeleton and zombies which will mill out if the door is left open. Of course the mercs stumble into this room first and light it and all of its horrid contents on fire, safely closing the book on that adventure,

You open the door to find a horrible sight. A pit twenty feet is filled with the corpses of the recently, and by the smell of it, not as recently slain. Ichor and fluids drip from the walls of the pit. Your stomach tries to flee up through your mouth when you realize that the bodies are all moving…

Below there are four main rooms. The northernmost room has been converted to a barracks for the cultists and is mostly defended by the living.

You open a door revealing a neat crypt that has been converted into a sort of barracks with bunk beds and trunks neatly laid out in the room. The crypt niches are filled with ornate urns bearing the names of the hallowed Deeandee dead interned within. A number of shocked faces look back at you as a mob of cultists panic at the sight of a heavily armed warparty standing in the doorway blocking any escape.

The mercs managed to sneak up to the room and surprised everyone when they opened the door. Brianor charged in and unleashed a fearsome maelstrom of insectine death that wiped out most of the cultists before they even realized their danger. The remaining cultists were quickly dispatched, with their young mageling surrendering to the adventurers in mortal fear for her life. A youthful dalliance with the occult she only half understand had turned deadly serious. The dagron hired her as the Mercenary chef. Perhaps cooking spells might better suit her than raising the dead (Loudwater goths… sheesh).

The final location is the primary crypt and location where the prime cultists raises powerful undead to do his bidding – of course just what he’s doing when the mercs show up.

Upon opening the door you come into the Sanctum Sanctorum of the crypt where the most recent and most hallowed of the Deeandee dead come to rest. A vile sorcerer stands across the room from you enacting vile rituals to disturb the rest of the peaceful dead and bring them to vengeful life. With a snarl he points at you, “Villains and Marauders! Begone from here and disturb not our holy work!”

Except of course that Brianor had already snuck into the room and scouted. While the lead-Loudwater goth teenager had raised some fairly dangerous and insubstantial undead the party made quick work of them. Even the best efforts of the unholy tomb from which the youth had learned his trade was insufficient to save them from mighty adventurer justice.

So that’s where we left off, the party ransacked the dungeon and found some gold, grabbed the book and was heading back up the stairs when the door at the top opened revealing someone yelling, “I’m back, we’ve got the beer and pretzels!”

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NRC - Carnival of Death
Sometimes you can have too much fun...

Our intrepid heroes of the Loudwater Mercenaries were hired to find a missing carnival troupe hired to help set up Loudwater’s upcoming Trade Faire. Given precious little to go on they interrogated the town and discovered that the carnival was likely down the river to the East.

Traveling to Secomber, the party found the carnival accused of dark magics, with the townspeople shocked at recent livestock slaughter and grave-robbery. The carnival itself was beset by an evil curse they did not understand that was working to keep them in Secomber.

Kilshandra senses the curse lying over the carnival and together with Craffmaster devised a holy ritual to cleans the carnival. Setting up an alter to Erathis and conducting the ritual at midnight the dark power was dragged out into the open where it manifested in an undead ambush. The mercenaries just barely defeated the attack though they lost Craffmaster to a flock of horrid undead vultures.

With the coming of dawn, there arose a great clatter. Heralded by pitchforks, torches, and assorted stabbing weapons, the townsfolk of Secomber advanced on the camp with grand delusions of cleansing the curse themselves. Townsfolk rarely remember that these jobs are best left to Adventurers. Preparing to cleanse the carnival site (and the wagons and carnies) with the fires born from their meager hearths the townsfolk surrounded the encampment and issued a final warning for the Adventurers to abandon the carnies to their fate. To allow the carnival to burn to ash before it could bring joy (and just a dash unease) into the souls of Loudwater was unacceptable to the band of mercenaries. That, or the thought of letting an entire cart of fried pastries go to waste.

Faced with an xenophobic mob of small-town humans, the mercenaries decided to negotiate their way out of this predicament. As it happened, the parties chosen to negotiate with said mob were a giant (blood spattered, dirty, and with more than a slight tinge of corrupt and long-fermented brain smell on his breath) and a freakin’ Dagron (who looked like a Dagron). The Dagron did the talking.

Regnant Syntax drew himself up, assumed his most civil and aristocratic air, and calmly petitioned the crowd to lay down their arms and their stabbing weapons and allow the carnival to pass through on its way. “ROAR… hiss roar roar ROOOOAR,” he spoke. Perhaps the image of a Dagron with flicks of lightning jumping between his glistening fangs did not inspire civility in the Mayor, for the negotiations came to a rapid halt.

Every good commander has a back up plan. Regnant, seeing that he was at an impasse with the Mayor, decided to take a different approach to the negotiations. Snarling, flecks of electric spittle flashing in the air, he moved to the closest wagon. Digging his claws into the wooden wagon he flexed his mighty dragon strength. In a spray of trade goods and carnival prizes, he lifted the fully loaded wagon above his head and held it while addressing the mob a second time.

“Unless you think you can catch this wagon before it crushes your puny spines, I suggest you allow the carnival and my men to leave on pleasant terms!”

Confronted with such an intimidating force, the Mayor was quickly cowed. He allowed the tired caravan of carnival and mercenaries to leave, offering up a retort that was less then frightening as the Dragon passed.

“Don’t you guys ever come back or you’re totally dead!”

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Welcome to the Party

After much hard work, dungeon delving, and monster slaughtering, two fine sets of adventurers have finally made enough gold to get themselves an Obsidian Portal website. And what a beauty! Of course it will be up to them to make it shine…

Note to the Email Campaign Players: Participation in the website will be rewarded. Note to Loudwater Mercenaries: Participation in the website will be rewarded.

That’s right, treasure. You know you like treasure.

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EM - Say Zithar and Enter
Alron joins the party

The latest Zitharist meeting saw the introduction of Alron to their ranks followed by a discussion of the upcoming town faire and the need to be watchful to make sure it is a success!

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NRC - Trade-Roads and Temples
Brawling and Bawling

Having loosened up with a little river-bandit brawling, the Loudwater Mercenaries took to land and returned to Loudwater via the trade road. Along the way they encountered a small trade caravan. At first all seemed well, until a dastardly bandit ambush forced the mercenaries into battle (I mean, they’re not going to negotiate are they??)

The bandits took a bit of a beating, but the real surprise was that both the mercenaries AND the bandits were there for dinner, as the caravan crew and some friends hidden in the forest revealed their lycanthropic natures and attacked. A vicious fight ensued, ending with the party bloody and battered.

Thankfully they weren’t done yet, for no sooner had they gotten on their way again than, lo, a halfling appeared on the road and sent them to an “interview.” In an extra-planar Temple of Orcus where a very surprised and displeased Orcuspriest had at them with his juggernaut zombie friend. It was a bit like baseball this time, since everyone kept getting struck out! Still our heroes won out in the end to receive fabulous treasure as their “sign on bonus.”

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