Terra Ignota

RORG!!!
Foster the People (or Orcs)

Kira hears rumors • Quimbly “heads” back • The Bard & the Druid meet an elf and kill an orc • More orcs have the villagers in a pen • Orcs are ferocious • Vanished into thin air

Several days prologue, Kira Bly heard through her network of informants that her friend Quimbly had run into some trouble in Tamran. She had some minor business to conduct there, so she thought to check in on him. By the time she arrived, Quimbly and the rest of the group had left for Crystalhurst. Kira’s underworld contacts informed her of the two lycanthropes sent to kill the group, so she also raced for Crystalhurst, hoping to warn and aid Quimbly.

5 Kuthona, a Moonday
After the previous evening’s fight with were-creatures, the group finished an evening of rest as best they could. The following morning, Quimbly left with the severed heads of Porter & Grestle, hoping to collect his reward from the Pathfinder Society representative in Tamran. Auzhek journeyed with him, fearing that a halfling with two severed heads could easily be misinterpreted. He hoped that being a paladin of Iomedae would let him vouch for his small friend.

Maccus, Karandrahan and Hilda Martoum had only a short journey left before arriving in Crystalhurst. The first residence they encountered was abandoned, and appeared to have been looted. Karandrahan briefly imagined he heard a woman scream, as if embarassed, when he looked in a water closet. A trick of the mind, or something more? Moments later, Maccus noticed an elf examining another nearby tree house. Galador, a resident of Crystalhurst, had returned home to find the city abandoned.

Maccus and Karandrahan ducked out of sight until they could sort out Galador’s intentions, when an orc strolled up a nearby path. The creature was lost in whatever passes for thought amongst its kind, and didn’t notice the others. When the orc started into a house, Galador shouted a warning for the creature to move along. The orc bolted, crying out for “Rorg!” Not wanting him to escape or warn others of his kind, Galador loosed his arrow. Maccus also emerged from hiding and fired his crossbow. Both hit, bringing the orc down. At that very moment, Kira arrived on horseback. The small band agreed to work together to find the missing townsfolk of Crystalhurst.

Moving towards the center of town, the group managed to sneak up on more orcs guarding a small pen of villagers. The orcs leader, Rorg, spotted the unstealthy members of the group and a pitched battle ensued. The orcs proved capable combatants, and dangerously difficult to dispatch. Both Maccus and Karandrahan’s cheetah were nearly slain, and everyone else suffered substantial injuries. In the aftermath, an orc child was discovered nearby. The group seems determined to foster the girl, perhaps to assuage guilt over killing the first of the orcs, who may or may not have been minding his own business.

There were only six villagers in the pen, out of hundreds or even thousands that used to live in Crystalhurst. These survivors were able to relay their tale to the group:
A few days ago, a wedding was supposed to take place in the city. However, the groom died in an accident the night before the wedding. The day became one of mourning, and the wedding guests gathered for a funeral instead. At that service, a ghostly figure appeared and screamed. When the apparition vanished, much of the congregation disappeared as well. The city was in chaos over the loss of some of its most important leaders, and unsure of what to do. The following evening, the apparition appeared again, and more villagers vanished. That was enough to send most of the remaining citizens of Crystalhurst scattering. Within a few hours, the city was abandoned. A small band of orcs was passing through the area, and noticed the undefended city. The orcs captured a few stragglers in the area, and that is what put them into conflict with Maccus, Galador, and the others.

Injured, battered, low on spells, and ammunition, the group collects itself before moving on….

Mindy

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A Secret Revealed
Help Wanted

The City Watch arrives • Wounds are treated but a cure fails • A talk with the Forest Marshal and a Pathfinder • Hilda’s secret is blood • Invest in silver • Grestle & Porter attack

Late in the evening of 3 Kuthona, a Starday.

The city watch’s arrival on the scene of the fight with the wererat chased it off. After Karandrahan briefly —and perhaps too bluntly— explained to the officers what had happened, the captain suggested the group return to the barracks with the squad to have their wounds treated and to report directly to officials. Auzhek the paladin arrived from Lakespride just as the scene was being cleaned up.

Once at the City Watch’s headquarters, Maccus expressed concern he may have been infected with lycanthropy from a were-rat bite. A healer by the name of Randal offered to assist, and determined Maccus was indeed cursed. Lacking the needed spell casting ability to remove the curse, Randal and Maccus tried more conventional treatment— Maccus ingested belladonna, and endured the poisonous effects in an attempt to remove the lycanthropy. Unfortunately, despite some magical and mundane assistance (spells and antitoxin) from Randal, this failed. Randal suggested the next thing to try would be to visit the Druid enclave known as Crystalhurst, deep in the Fangwood Forest.

Forest Marshall Weslen Gavirk and a group of advisors came in to see the companions. Weslen further stressed the importance of Hilda Martom to the military defense of Nirmathas. A representative of the Pathfinder Society, Reginar Lacklan, also offered insight into the two mercenaries hunting Hilda, the lyncanthropes Grestle and Porter. It was Grestle, a were-rat, that had bitten Maccus earlier in the evening. Reginar offered if the companions could deal with Grestle & Porter, he would be willing to sponsor the group for membership in the Pathfinder Society, an idea that greatly interested Quimbly.

The group returned to Maccus’s family home, planning to head to Crystalhurst first thing in the morning. Maccus’s mother discreetly pulled him out to the barn to reveal a secret. Hilda Martoum had been hiding at the estate for the previous day; furthermore, she was Maccus’s half-sister. Hilda was also bitten by Grestle, and likely cursed as well. If Maccus had only three days to get the cure, that meant Hilda only had two. Lady Idolhands begged Maccus to keep her secret, and escort her to the druids at Crystalhurst for help. She gave her son a large sum of money to help the group on their way.

The next morning, the companions made a quick run through town to purchase several silver weapons. They booked passage on a small river boat that took them upstream to the drop off point for Crystalhurst. As they made camp for the evening, Karandrahan and Quimbly scouted the area. Grestle and Porter had followed the group, and the two pairs blundered into each other. A battle ensued, with Grestle fighting the two small scouts, and Porter charging into the camp to attack the others. The two were-creatures were shocked to find their opponents had silver weapons, and were cut down before they could flee.

Crystalhurst is only a short journey away. Will the companions find the aid they need before time runs out and the curse of lycanthropy is irreversible?

Porter

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Skulking

2 Kuthona 4711, a Fireday

Quimbly, Maccus and Karandrahan arrived in the capital city of Tamran, and went straight to Maccus’s family home. One of the wealthier families in town, the Idolhands have a small but well-appointed manor house that sits on Lake Encarthan. Moored at the dock is an impressive sailing yacht that the family owns and uses to leave Tamran when Molthune’s aggression gets too close.

The three arrived just in time for dinner with Maccus’s parents. When asked about Hilda Martom, Maccus’s father knew nothing, while his mother hesitantly gave an address where she could be found. The next day, they visited Hilda’s home only to find it empty, with guards posted outside. And so began some detective work….

Visiting the Forest Bounty feast hall, the group inquired with the barmaid if Hilda had been seen. Apparently, she was missing and others were looking for her as well. Stephanie described two men who had been staking out the hall, waiting for her to return.

Quimbly stayed in the feast hall gathering information, while Maccus and Karandrahan left to see if they could find more about the two stalkers. Checking local inns, and eventually finding where they were staying, Maccus bluffed his way into their room. After a quick search, Karandrahan found a scroll case and pouch of belladonna.

Quimbly learned that Hilda was a fortune-teller and skilled with a Varisian Harrow deck. She had been providing information to Forest Marshal Weslen Gavirk and the Nirmathas army. Because of her skills, the Nirmathans are very concerned for her safety.

Not long after Maccus and Karandrahan returned to the feast hall, Stephanie pointed out the two men who had been looking for Hilda. After a gruff conversation, the two men left with the others following them. Once outside, they saw one of the men duck into an alley. Karandrahan sent Ryvera to stop him, but he seemingly vanished. Maccus also pursued into the alley, when the man attacked from ambush. He revealed himself as a were-rat. A fight ensued, and even though outnumbered, his supernatural resistance to normal weapons proved superior. Eventually he escaped, but not before inflicting a nasty bite on Maccus. The town watched arrived just as the were-rat scrambled up the side of a building.

Wererat

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On the Road

30 Neth 4711, a Wealday

The town of Lakespride held a funeral for Sir Barrett, giving him full honors for his position and service. There were drinks and casseroles to be had at the inn, and everyone was good spirits considering. Maccus spoke eloquently at the funeral, bringing comfort to those who knew Barrett.

The following day, the mayor spoke with Maccus, Quimbly and Karandrahan about their next course of action —someone will have to deal with the strange fungus syphoning heat from Sir Barrett’s home. The mayor also asked the party to deliver a short letter to Tamran informing Barrett’s daughter Hilda Martom of his death; it was this task the group chose to deal with first.

On the first evening of travel, the party made camp and set watch. Maccus, on second watch, noticed an ivy-like plant slither off of a tree to towards the campsite. The creature was an assassin vine, and battle ensued. Karandrahan’s cheetah rushed into melee and was quickly grappled. The assassin vine caused the surrounding plants to entangle the group, while continuing to crush the cheetah. Maccus used a grease spell on the cat to allow it to escape. Quimbly cautiously approached the distracted plant and finished it off with a carefully placed thrust.

Wet cheetah sml

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The Tomb
"Wasabi burns...."

27 Neth 4711, a Sunday

Prelude
After the previous day’s excitement, Quimbly was awakened in the pre-dawn hours by his friend Kira. Something had happened, and some discretion was required….

In Kira’s lumberyard, a goblin lies dead alongside a human male. The man seems to have been part of the missing caravan, though perhaps infected with ghoul fever. Regardless, having a dead man in one’s lumberyard would be very bad for business, so Quimbly agreed to help dispose of the body. The two carried the bodies by cart deep into the woods, where they stumbled upon the rest of the caravan’s remains. After looting searching the caravan for items of interest, Kira and Quimbly left the bodies with the others found amongst the wreckage.

Quimbly returned to town to report the found caravan, only to learn about the group’s early morning encounter at the church. He borrowed a pony from Father Symys, and rode for Sir Barrett’s house. Once there, he quickly found the rest of the group within the tomb….

The Tomb
Once inside, Quimbly rejoined AuZHek, Karandrahan, and Maccus. The party searched the tomb, finding a locked room containing piles of deceased humans and goblins, including Sir Barrett, his sword, and a horn of fog. Further exploration revealed a small altar to Iomedae.

The final room, where Auzhek had shut the door on an unknown evil, remained. The paladin opened the door, and entered. He was immediately attacked by an undead creature which was at one time human. A brief but vicious battle ensued. When it was over, Quimbly was nearly slain and Auzhek was briefly paralyzed. The group recovered a necklace of an unusual metal, similar to adamantine.

Auzhek insisted on collecting Sir Barrett’s body, along with the other creature, and they took them back to town for proper funerals.
Ghoul

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A Siege and a Crypt

27 Neth 4711, a Sunday

Karandrahan, Maccus and Auzhek started the day heading to the church to visit Father Symys, hoping he could heal Karandrahan’s wounded animal companion. Upon their arrival, it was discovered that goblins had somehow gotten into the church and barricaded the bridge that approaches it. Lacking any significant ranged firepower, the party asked for some help from the village— Stefan, a local hunter, offered to fire flaming arrows at the wooden barricade. He volleyed a few arrows at the goblins, who returned fire. Stefan was struck, wounded, and would have died had not Auzhek and Karandrahan rushed to his aid.

Maccus drew the goblins’ attention by boldly stepping forward and reciting a soliloquy on autumn. The goblins were fascinated by his performance, which provided enough of a distraction for the bard and Auzhek to approach within striking distance. Once the two goblins on the bridge were dispatched, the group went into the church where they found more goblins holding Father Symys hostage, demanding holy water and ranting about humans not staying dead. After a brief battle, the goblins and their bugbear thug were defeated, just in time for an undead ghoul to rise up and attack. The creature proved to be the merchant Riggen taken to the church with previous injuries. Auzhek scored a particularly telling hit to slay the ghoul.

Once things settled, Father Symys was able to heal the party back to full strength, in addition to providing the group with vials of holy water, and healing potions for later. The three set out to visit Sir Barrett’s cottage.

Once there, they discovered an empty barn, and a house wracked with an unnatural cold. Further exploration revealed brown mold feeding on all heat it could siphon from the house, and a giant, bear-sized skunk in the barn. Karandrahan’s affinity for animals proved handy, as he was able to cox the creature away and without a fight. They left the house to be dealt with later.

Following a short path behind the house, the group found the crypt and monument Sir Barrett had built for his friends some 40 years ago. Inside, fire beetles meandered aimlessly, until Karandrahan and Maccus used dancing lights to distract them. Another door inside the tomb swung open, and five foot centipede darted out and attacked Maccus. Karandrahan’s cheetah and Auzhek moved to surround the creature, with Auzhek pausing long enough to pull shut the door the insect came through. Moments after the centipede was slain, Auzhek could feel a palpable wave of evil through the door he had just closed. It seems to be latched from this side, but can it be opened from the other side?
Pzopss0014 e centipede

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The Gathering

The current date is 26 Neth 4711, a Starday.

Maccus and Karandrahan start their morning hearing a crowd gathering. They find the merchant Riggen wounded and collapsed. Villagers help him to the Temple where Father Symys looks after his wounds. Quimbly is awakened by the ruckus and investigates as well.

Later that evening, goblins attack the village. Karandrahan helps a horse and fights a fire, while the others fight the creatures. K’s cheetah attacks and is nearly killed. M uses a grease spell and net, and Auzhek wades into hand-to-hand combat. Quimbly attacks with a sling, eventually uses sneak attack to finish the last goblin dog. One goblin escapes.

The mayor thanks them for their heroics, and gives them a bit of history about the goblins. Maccus recalls stories of Sir Barrett. Maccus springs for rooms and a dinner at the Inn. The group plans to see Symys in the morning, to heal the cheetah before heading out to visit Sir Barrett’s house.
Goblin

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