The Horde Awakens

Episode X
Captains of the Sky

The Elear Palantiri Luin, Ambassadorial Edition.

Made by the Theridrarg-based, elven company Elear (which means “vision”), the Palantiri Luin (which means “far-seeing” and “sky blue” respectively) is a beautiful, luxurious airship capable of solid speeds, boasting plenty of cabin space, and capable of defending itself against even the most stolid foe.

Our heroes purchased one from an airdealership in Emerald City. Costing 335,000 gp, their Ambassadorial Edition Elear Palantiri Luin is has a magically-tuned engine, an enchanted auto-guidance and auto-trim system, three times the stock cannon arrays, leather interiors with cherrywood paneling, and is painted black with silver highlights. The words “Maserati” are boldly displayed on the bow, and magically light up in the color of the captain’s choice. Underneath, the words “Ambassadorial Edition” are beautifully detailed in flowing, cursive elvish. Construction will take three months.

Shadow_Demon_by_BenWootten.jpgAfter this enormous decision, the heroes decided to pass the time until a scheduled parade chasing down some bandits who were preying on low-level merchant travelling on the roads east of Emerald City. After some hunting through the mountains, Sir Jarron began detecting flickers of movement in the shadows among some of the nearby rocks and alerted the other Inquisitors. Koragku decided to pray for insight into their enemies but failed, and a tsunami-class thunderstorm immediately came over the region.

The party decided to move into the rocks where they had seen the movement, and Koragku was immediately assaulted by a shadow demon. The incorporeal demon caused significant damage to the druid before Koragku was able to retreat behind Sir Jarron and receive healing.

Regrouping, the party re-engaged the demon. Charging forward, Vakel Riash the Ringbearer turned into a perfect tank as Koragku recovered and Sir Jarron pelted the creature with arrows. The shadow received a lot of damage, but finally turned tail and fled when Koragku rejoined the battle with a spectacular Moonbeam that blasted through the tsunami and lit the demon with radiant fire. The monster attempted to run away, but could not outrun Vakel’s battleaxe or Koragku’s concentrated Moonbeam, and finally perished.

Searching the area, the heroes discovered some gold and mutilated corpses in a nearby cave. It seemed the demon had been the one preying on travelers. Elated over their victory, the heroes ride back to Emerald City.

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Episode IX
Commanders of Their Own Destiny

Cairn Castellum – under new management!

Jorj – slain!

The Masked Magi – split!

Amekidos – the son of Asmodeous!

After a brutal battle with Jorj the Firstborn, our heroes slay him! Recognized for their bravery, a member of the Masked Magi reveals that the leaders of Enderon are split! Six of the twelve, including the Archmage, believe the rise of the devils is inevitable and wish to encourage it, while the other six are determined to resist to the end!

Revealing herself to be Lila, a gnomish female from Therigrad, the Masked Magi representative grants our heroes a castle and hordes of treasure, on the promise they bring about the end of the devil invasion! She reveals a plan to reunite the Dragonrings, powerful artifacts capable of controlling dragons of their color, and use them against the devilish devils!

As our heroes settle into their new responsibilities, Lila warns of a prophesied terror: a son of Asmodeous who would die and be risen again to lead the devil army to victory! This must be avoided at all costs!

Finding themselves millionaires and property owners, the heroes set out to fulfill their quest!

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Episodes VI & VII & VIII
Explorations and Findings

The heroes continued to explore the dungeon prison.

The most surprising find by far was an inhabited room in the south-east corner of the complex. Hearing a commotion, the Inquisitors and Lander broke down a door to find a young villager named Prufrock attempting to recapture several animals he was delivering to an elderly and genial wizard named Elias. The heroes cautiously helped Prufrock recover the animals, then spoke to Elias. The friendly geriatric explained he had blocked off routes into the main prison complex and dug a new dungeon entrance leading to his chosen room. He then setup his home – the nearby available supply of magical and undead creatures provided an ideal environment for study. He thanked the Inquisitors by providing Koragku with the materials needed to acquire a familiar and by agreeing to resurrect Amekidos. The spell would take one week.

The heroes discovered that the area in the north-west of the dungeon was apparently inaccessible without passing through a room with a dozen mimics. They did not attempt to get past the horde of creatures.

A makeshift barracks with three animated armors was found. The armors served as prison guards and had no interest in attacking the heroes so long as they didn’t attempt to free any prisoners.

After defeating a wraith (which managed to kill one of the animated armors), the Inquisitors discovered what appeared to be a Ring of Wizardry, but turned out to be a cursed Ring of Bureaucratic Wizardry. This powerful artifact forces the individual wearing it to fill out a set of forms anytime they wish to cast a spell.

Finally, the heroes discovered a teleportation crystal. They placed the Ring of Bureaucratic Wizardry on it and took it. It dumped them off inside a parlor room in the Ayimeth Palace. There they encountered the newly-appointed High Inquisitor of Ayimeth Sun Odie. Although he was entirely friendly, they threw the ring-wearing teleportation crystal at him, causing him to teleport back into the dungeon, leaving our heroes chilling in the Palace.

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Episode VI
A Prisoner Freed

zombie_giant_by_tsabo6-d5b739m.jpgThe four Inquisitors freeze in their investigations when they hear a shout coming from the corridor protected by the paralysis rune. After managing to disarm the trap, they advance cautiously through a couple passageways before finding a room filled with large cages. All are abandoned except one – from inside, the human fighter Lander yells for help. The Inquisitors free him.

They immediately hear a roaring from the solid southern wall of the chamber. They barely have time to examine the room before an ogre zombie, enraged by their noise making, bursts through a secret one-way door in the wall and gives battle. The Inquisitors and Lander give a furious battle, in which Lander distinguishes himself, and the undead menace finally falls dead. Thanks to their skills and quick thinking, the heroes emerged from the battle unscathed and decide to explore the secret passage opened by the monster.

beholder.jpgAnother series of pitch-black corridors lead the characters to a stuck door. Their attempts to open the door stealthily fail flat, and the heroes spend nearly a minute breaking the door down. The commotion did not go unnoticed: waiting for them is an enormous, undead beholder! It’s cold, lidless eye blinks at them unfeelingly. Jaron attempts to communicate with it, but when his attempts fail to elicit a significant response, Koragku leaps forward and attacks it.

The beholder is surprised, but holds its ground. Koragku turns into a brown bear, but is soon paralyzed by the creatures gaze. A disintegration very nearly kills Jaron in a moment of high-intensity, but thanks to the furious efforts of everyone (and some more heroics by Lander), the beast eventually falls. The heroes explore the room beyond and, finding it contains nothing but a dreary drainage culvert and several locked doors, decide to camp.

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Tales of Enderon I
Return to Cairn Nuru

Ser Darron has just sent off the Inquisitors during the attack on Cairn Nuru. He joins the defenders in the courtyard and he and his soldiers account for many a devil. However, Ser Darron recognizes that the battle was doomed from the start, so when a secondary explosion creates an opening to the defenders’ left, they make a break for the hills. The next several minutes are tense, and Ser Darron is the only survivor.

He manages to lose the pursuing devils in the Kilechi Mountains and stays the night in a cave, intending to head north and make for Kamuzu in the morning. However, his sleep is disturbed by the arrival of a mysterious figure in his cave, apparently a Masked Magi. The figure uses a spell to destroy Ser Darron’s sword, congratulates him on escaping Cairn Nuru, then ominously advises him that his adventure has ended.

The figure touches Ser Darron, and his vision goes black …

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Episode V
New Friends

treasurechest.jpgIn a sudden reversal, Jaron and Vakel close the gates leading out of Mariah’s estate. Despite the clamor outside, they decide to quickly explore the other half of the property, hoping the find the appropriate place for the key they took from Mariah’s body. The building across the garden from the flaming structure appears undamaged, and they head in the direction.

They immediately see that the door leading inside has been left open and blood smears its frame. Cautiously exploring the building, they soon find the body of the massive orc they injured earlier, apparently bled out in a bedroom. They search his body and find, among other things, a letter in Orc they can’t read. They continue through the building and find a treasure room opened by Mariah’s key – among the valuables is a fine battleaxe and a fine longbow.

At this point, the High Elf Odysseus burst in, presumably intent on stealing. Startled, Vakel picked him up. There is much shouting. Less than a minute later, the half-orc Koragku burst in with several of the city guard to find Vakel holding Odysseus in the air. There is much shouting.

Eventually, the situation calms down enough for explanations. Koragku, an Inquisitor, arrived in Ayimeth a couple weeks ago under orders from the Masked Magi to end the city’s corruption. After securing the loyalty of as much city guardsmen as possible, he led a military excursion against the corrupt noblemen of Ayimeth. It was his forces engaged in combat with guardsmen loyal to Mariah that Vakel and Jaron heard outside earlier. Koragku is pleased to hear Mariah is already dead.

11721793_10200785349074058_544400583_n.jpgEveryone proceeds outside, where Koragku traces a symbol on the ground to inform the Masked Magi of his success in cleansing the city. A Masked Magi then teleported in to deliver the city’s new High Inquisitor and give new orders to the Inquisitors. He instructs them to proceed to the abandoned complex beneath Ayimeth and recover a “stone of power” from its depths. He then disappears again. Neither Jaron nor Vakel were able to inform him of the incoming devil army.

The Inquisitors replenish their supplies and spend the night in Ayimeth. The next morning they enter the catacombs, armed only with an out-of-date map. They soon discover the complex is inhabited by undead. They engage a skeleton minotaur not far into the pitch black dungeon and continue their explorations. The adventure takes a break after the heroes find an abandoned room, decorated with a fountain, a passageway out blocked by a paralysis rune.

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Episode IV
Slain!

ORK_2_revison_1_copy.jpgThe fire in the basement spreads to the dining hall, but before the heroes can depart an enormous orc stomps into the room. As the smoke and flames fill the room, Vakel Riash engage the beast point-blank while Amekidos and Jaron fight the creature from range.

The battle ranges for some minutes before disaster strikes! Amekidos attempts to cast Sleep on the monster but accidentally catches Vakel in the area of effect, putting the Inquisitor into a deep sleep but leaving the orc unaffected. The orc switches targets to the now-injured Amekidos and, with a powerful blow, kills him outright!

Furious and inspired by the death of Amekidos, Jaron pushes back the orc single-handedly. As the orc nears death he flees, and Jaron lets him leave to revive Vakel.

The burning building begins to collapse, and there is only enough time to grab a couple valuables from Amekidos’s body before they must flee the room as the roof crashes down, cremating the bodies of Mariah, Amekidos, and the other dead.

The surviving Inquisitors find themselves in a garden with a large gate leading out to the streets. The sounds of a battle or commotion can be heard from the streets, and the survivors prepare to venture outside.

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Episode III
Kidnapped!

FallingStar.jpgWaking in the morning, the Inquisitors make their way to the newly-reopened docks to seek a ship willing to take on passengers. Only one is to be found, the Falling Star, and the characters negotiate the standard fare with the captain before agreeing to set sail for Sturike in the south-east of Enderon, near Mount Doom.

Mariah.jpgThe ship is barely out of port before the captain and a dozen sailors come down to the Inquisitor’s quarters belowdecks to imprison them and sell them as slaves. Despite a valiant fight, the characters are knocked unconscious and wake up twelve days later as the Falling Star sails into Ayimeth, an enormous low-life city on the continent of Ayimir, in the north-west of Enderon. The bound Inquisitors are led through many of Ayimeth’s seediest areas before ending up at a slave market, where they are sold as fighting slaves to the noblewoman Mariah, represented at the auction by her majordomo Jezab.

The prisoners are kept in the dungeon underneath Mariah’s mansion for the night. The Inquisitors soon escape from their cells and make their way into the mansion, but not before recovering their equipment and starting an out of control fire in the basement. They find themselves in the middle of some kind of party, presided over by a well-dressed and authoritative woman, presumably Mariah. Many guards attempted to restrain the Inquisitors, but our heroes slaughtered nearly a dozen of them and knocked five others unconscious.

Amekidos seized the opportunity to dash across the room and grab Mariah, threatening to kill her unless the remaining few guards dropped their weapons. No sooner did the guards’ swords fall to the floor than Amekidos killed Mariah. The guards rushed to retrieve their weapons, but only managed to down Amekidos before the other Inquisitors killed them. Amekidos regained consciousness, and the Inquisitors surveyed the dead and unconscious around them.

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Episode II
Adventure in Kamuzu

After a restful night at a portside inn, the Inquisitors set out to locate the local High Inquisitor and investigate the disturbances in Kamuzu.

Inquisitor.jpg They locate their quarry at the mansion of the Lord Protector. After a brief conversation with the guards around the mansion, they are escorted to the High Inquisitor’s office. The High Inquisitor informs them that the Lord Protector, an elf named Anu Mezzi, has issued a dead-or-alive arrest warrant for the half-orc Graugnaug, the leader of Kamuzu’s Followers of Tyr and the leader of the unrest in the city square. Although the city watch has been unwilling to attempt a capture for fear of repercussions by Graugnaug’s Followers, the outstanding warrant makes peace in the city impossible until the matter is resolved. The High Inquisitor entreats the heroes to convince Anu Mezzi to drop the warrant and Graugnaug to stop stirring up trouble. The heroes split up. Amekidos and Vakel proceeded to the town square to confront Graugnaug immediately while Jaron remained behind to speak to the Lord Protector.

Gurgnaug.png Infuriated by Graugnaug’s actions, and frustrated that he cannot do anything to stop the Masked Magi’s new decree, Lord Protector Anu Mezzi demands the heroes locate Graugnaug and arrest him for treason with as little bloodshed as possible. Meanwhile, Amekidos and Vakel reach the town square to find things much as they were before, with Graugnaug still leading the rioting Followers and townspeople.

Deciding to act immediately, Amekidos cast Sleep on Graugnaug, causing him and some of those nearest to him to collapse unconscious. A few other illusion spells help create chaos in the square, and Amekidos and Vakel seize the opportunity to grab the sleeping Graugnaug and haul him towards the nearest guild hall at the edge of the square. Their progress is almost stopped by the arrival of a few Followers of Tyr, who attempt to stop the Inquisitors but hesitate when Amekidos threatens to kill Graugnaug if they don’t stand down. They are almost stopped yet again as the city watch previously in the square begins to close in on them, but the well-timed arrival of Jaron distracts them.

While Jaron leads many of the city watchmen on a chase around the city, Amekidos and Vakel get Graugnaug indoors. Despite their attempts to lock out the city watch, they are eventually caught and disarmed by the city watch. The lucky arrival of Jaron, who had managed to lose his pursuers through the alleyways of Kamuzu, convinces the city watch to lower their weapons and accept their authority as Inquisitors.

The remainder of the day is spent having dinner with the Lord Protector and High Inquisitor and interrogating Graugnaug. The High Inquisitor is disappointed a more peaceful solution wasn’t possible, but is pleased no deaths were required. The Inquisitors are awarded most of the gold raised from selling Graugnaug’s property by the Lord Protector, and also receive a Lantern of Revealing from Graugnaug’s personal vault.

Despite their best attempts, the Inquisitors are unable to convince the Lord Protector, High Inquisitor, or Graugnaug to use their influence to help prepare the city for possible attack by the devil army. The day draws to a close as the characters spend the night in the mansion of the Lord Protector, determined leave the city the next day.

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Episode I
A New Enemy

CairnNuru.gifIt is winter of the year 834 M.A. The Inquisitors started in Cairn Nuru, walking the southern wall with Lord Commander of Cairn Nuru, Sir Darron Lay. He expresses his opinion that the disappearing dwarves of little concern but gets little time to answer questions before an explosion knocks an enormous hole in the southern wall. Over a hundred imps, previously invisible, appear outside the hole and begin pouring in, while a blue-and-red portal materializes and disgorges another hundred imps along with an assortment of bearded and barbed devils. Sir Darron and the Inquisitors rush down off the wall but encounter some resistance at the base of the corner tower.

zel.jpgSome combat ensues, in which Vakel Riash is downed by imp poison and Jaron Williams is badly injured. Sir Darron tells the Inquisitors to escape the castle and warn the Masked Magi of the devil army; he then rushes off the assist his men in the defense. Vakel Riash soon regains consciousness but suffers serious injuries. The Inquisitors desperately fight a hole through the imps and escape on horses taken from the castle stables. As they leave, Jaron Williams and Vakel Riash see a crowned pit fiend-like creature watching them the walls. Unable to identify him, they ride off to catch up with Amekidos, who had already ridden away.

With Vakel Riash and Jaron Williams still in bad condition, the characters pause in the Kilechi Pass and soon get in a heated argument. Drawn by the noise, three wolves attack them, knocking Amekidos unconscious before the other Inquisitors defeat the creatures. Despite Jaron and Vakel’s poor attempts provide aid, Amekidos regains consciousness. With all three heroes badly injured. they decide to seek shelter and soon find a cave.

They barely get four hours of sleep before a horned devil, undetected by the characters, awakens them with a howl. Temporarily blinded by a spell from Amekidos, it flies away, presumably to inform the rest of the devils. The characters decide to move out of the pass and to the edge of the Ubadu Plains, only to discover two of their horses have been killed and the third run off. The several miles are crossed on foot without incident, and the characters spend the rest of the night in blissful slumber.

Feeling healed and refreshed the next morning, the characters begin the long trek across the Ubadu Plains. After a couple uneventful days, they chance upon a group of four soldiers from Kamuzu travelling to Cairn Nuru. At first suspicious, the soldiers accept the Inquisitors after seeing their mark but refuse to believe their claims that Cairn Nuru was attack. The soldiers ride on despite Jaron William’s best efforts to convince them otherwise.

Kamuzu.jpgAnother couple of days passes without incident before the Inquisitors reach the outskirts of Kamuzu. A hunting party outside the city informs the group that a riot, led by the Followers of Tyr, is going on in the city over a new decree passed by the Masked Magi. They also say that the Masked Magi have ordered half the city guards moved to Enderon’s capital of Theridrarg, but are unable to explain why.

Moving into the city, the characters split up. Amekidos heads out on his own to find a tavern and, after a couple of hours and several illusion spells, manages to steal some silver pieces. Meanwhile, Jaron Williams learns that the Masked Magi have suspended the right to a trial for anyone arrested for treason, inciting the Followers of Tyr across all of Enderon. Vakel Riash, who decided to stay with Jaron and only understands Draconic and Primordial, does not figure this out.

With Amekidos still at the taverns, Jaron and Vakel go off in search of a bookstore. They find one pretty quickly. Jaron is looking for a book on Draconic so he can communicate more easily with Vakel Riash, but is unable to find one in the languages section of the store. Jaron and Vakel spend the next three hours searching for Amekidos before finding him the town square.

FacelessMan.jpgThe town square is filled with protesting Followers of Tyr and some commoners, held back by most of the remaining local militia. Jaron spots two people who catch his eye in the crowd: one is a half-Orc among the Followers of Tyr who appears to be in a leadership position, and the second is a hooded man who seems to show some interest in the Inquisitors before disappearing down a side street. The characters chase after him but are unable to find him, and resolve to spend the rest of their daylight hours searching the city’s poorer district for him and anything else of interest.

Their search turns up no trace of the hooded man, but they do pinpoint a black market dealer and information broker and identify a small, nondescript building on the edge of town that the local commoners seem to treat with respect. Investigating the building, they discover it is a strange temple to an unknown god, populated by a few hooded men similar to the man they were looking for. At this point, Vakel wonders off on business of his own. After some initial friction with the hooded figures, Jaron and Amekidos learn that the temple is for the Many-Faced God, and his hooded followers are the Faceless Men. The temple, one of which can be found in many metropolises, grants the Many-Faced God’s gift: a quick and painful death for those who suffer in life. Somewhat disgusted, Jaron and Amekidos leave without learning anything more of this strange God or His Faceless Men.

Amekidos decides to search the city again looking for any fellow Tieflings. Meanwhile, Jaron goes off in search of Vakel, whom he finds in the same bookstore they’d visited before, holding a novel, “New Lands,” that is written in both Common and Draconic. Excited at the possibility of eventually being able to communicate with each other, Jaron and Vakel locate Amekidos, who was unable to find a single Tiefling anywhere in Kamuzu.

Already close to midnight, the Inquisitors decide to locate an inn, where they bed down for the night.

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