King Maker

Into the pit
and other dark stories

7 days on the road, early spring, entered town of 1500 people controlled by neighboring kingdom. Bought formal wear, cloaks, went to the brass mug inn. Place was sparkly clean, patrons were drunk and held weapons. The barkeep had a tattoo on her neck. Two patrons stood out, a mercenary with scars and a hooded figure that might be a ghost. The cleric sent a drink over to the mercenary. The hunter picked up pear slices in a cup. The mercenary disappeared. Hunter left to track him and went to the stables. Cleric went to clean off graffiti at the church. Sar and the pain went towards the military quarter and we’re accosted by 3 guards with a bounty letter. The guards took a few gold pieces and went and had a drink. The arcanists went to the mage college to sew rumors.

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The mercenary and 2 friends snuck up on the hunter in the stables and forced him to surrender. The hunter was taken to a small shanty house near the church and stuck in a cell to vlbe used as bait. The party converged on the shanty house, broke into the underground tunnel and promptly fell on a grease trap. The hunter bashed the door to his cell down and found himself staring into empty space. The party went to the end of the tunnel and found the cell was no longer there. The summoner summoned some archons that teleported into the shack above. The psion had a eye spy who saw the 3 mercenaries and a woman in caster robes waiting outside the trap door.

A few spells may be still active.
Bulls Strength cast on Sar
Aid cast on the party in general (with exception of the hunter)
Mind Link (?) on the party in general
Eye spy (?) in the hut
Summoned archons in the tunnel
Grease traps on the floor

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Journal Entry

May Urian forgive us and look kindly upon those we have slain. It is good that we have escaped from that dark tunnel trap, but at what cost? What sort of evil have we committed? I must make penance, for my participation in the escape indirectly led to the deaths of city guardsmen.

Some days after escaping the city we came upon a small village. The village is so small it is almost more of a camp. The local lord requested an audience through a roundabout way, no doubt to keep any spies off the trail. There is a terrible situation in a village not far where children have gone missing. The travel to the village was quick, and the situation far worse than we could have imagined. The locals tell us an inquisitor came by but two weeks ago with fiery red eyes, condemning four women in the village as witches. Three were burned alive in their homes and the fourth was put to the test, and drowned. I made efforts with assistance of a summoner to surface the drowned woman to the lakeshore and perform the necessary ritual to gain information. Oh how I detest speaking with the dead in such a manner! Sarenrae protect my soul!

The presumed witch had no useful detail, other than to reveal the inquisitor was a twisted soul. I alone went off into the woods to bury her corpse in a more proper manner. The next few days should prove a challenge, as the townsfolk describe what must be a ghast, or ghasts, which evoke fire, harranging the town and kidnapping children. The merchant in our party kept going on about having a sleepover with the children. Must keep an eye on that one..

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Merchant's log

This whole endeavor is most disconcerting. The individuals I’m travelling with are just bad for business all around. Sar and I have had dealings for quite a while and his family is always good for my work, but now I’m a fugitive with a group of unbalanced individuals.

I remember how it was while working with the military, I’ve tired of that life and all the death. The excitement of an adventuring life loses it’s luster when it’s all you see. For god’s sake, they just murdered those guards without even taking the time to pause and consider the repercussions! It’s not like I can go back to that town and perform business any longer, I’m likely a wanted man due to the actions of others!

I think I can trust the elf cleric, if only because of his devotion to Sarenrae, but the others I’m not so sure.

The dark elf is unusual, and though he appears to be benign, he does hold much power that will have to be watched.

The alchemist has always been a bit unstable, but reliable in a fight and always delivers product on time.

The summoner seems my sort of chap, powerful, but capable of thought and restraint. I don’t much like summoning creatures from beyond the void as they can be unpredictable, convincing others of a more mortal and material nature has always been my strong suit, but to each his own.

This brings me to the other fighter who’s name escapes me as I write this. I don’t know enough about him and his motives to make a full assessment, but on the outset, he appears to be unbalanced and far to quick to take a life. It’s not that I’m a pacifist or something like that, but these people are FAR more useful alive than dead. If need be I may need to act and bring him into line with the rest of the group, we shall see if that becomes necessary.

So far, we’ve eluded capture by what I can only assume are assassins or bounty hunters and ultimately made our way to a small village by a lake in exchange for a favor later. There are strange goings on here that require our attention if we wish to call in that favor later. It appears that four young women have been executed in a most gruesome fashion by either being burned alive or drowning in a lake for being a “witch”. If women who likely had no real power were executed in such a way, what would these country yokels do to someone of true power? I will need to plan for this event carefully.

Upon our cleric conversing with the spirit of the drowned woman, we have only discovered that the self proclaimed Inquisitor who perpetrated these murders in the name of the church was a “twisted soul”. Sadly this tells us very little about the situation. With the dead rising at night and children being taken, this whole mess vexes me greatly. I much prefer to avoid the dead, you cannot hear the whispers of their minds (if there are any) like you would a living and breathing being.

I believe within the next few nights we may lay a trap for the abductors of these children and see some resolution to this whole frightful mess. I’d much prefer to fight flesh and bone any day of the week.

- Remesh of Tarrington

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Blood stained page

[A sygil is carefully drawn at the top of the page denoting the mark of Urian – an orb with two halfs, the left half having rays extending outward, as if it were the suns light]

Its been some time since I last wrote. The village of Vellenshore holds many mysteries, though they may have to wait for a time. The mayor .. elusive. The church was violated and the priest strung up. There were signs of a struggle but no time to properly research or even bury the body. The signs piled up as I watched the sun slowly pass through the sky above. The villagers at first appeared grim and fearful, watching from their windows. At the lunch counter the stares were cold and.. unnerving. A casual conversation with the innkeeper about the church and our purpose led to an attack. The innkeeper and the patrons within showed signs of vampirism. The summoner (need to make better effort to remember his name) and I fled to the doorway yearning for the welcome arms of the sunlight. Instead we were greeted by splinters and fangs as what must have been a werebeast crashed into us. Urian be praised the werebeasts intent was the vampires, for it threw us into the street outside. Some minutes later I entered the inn again to see nothing but gore, and the werebeast in the back corner. I approached, attempting to communicate, only to be greeted with a low growl. Bad idea, back away and find the others. The others were fleeing something else from the center of town, with a dragon with them! A white dragon! I have never before seen one, it is the most beautiful of creatures. It is sad really, the few times I’ve had opportunity to speak with it, all it can say is that it has spent over 100 years in captivity. I could not imagine spending my entire life in captivity.. oh how terrible that must be!

We fled the village, probably the smartest thing we’ve done. I let the others talk me into it, even though I had a burning desire to find and destroy what must have been many others afflicted with the vampirism. The werebeast is another mystery that should be investigated, but to do so alone would be a certain death. After traveling the rest of the day about dusk we found an abandoned ruin, probably some temple from ages past. I had not heard any stories of temples in this area and did not recognize any of the ruins, artwork, or artifacts. The party headed into the ruins to prepare a camp while Sar and I prayed outside to the rising moon. It was refreshing to get in contact with Urian after spending the day among vampires and werebeasts. After the prayer ended, I stood up and looked around, wondering where the others had gone to when a lightning bolt struck the ground not a few feet from me. From the spot appeared what I can only describe as a celestial being sent as a messenger directly from Urian! I was in awe and rewarded at the sight and the gesture. To think that my path will be directed so closely by Urian’s will is inspiring. The messenger told of witches in the marshes to the west, of the great import of the missing children from the village, and of the war waged by the dark lord. The vampires and werebeasts are but a part of the war, but a piece we must take part in. Balance must be restored, else the werebeasts will be utterly destroyed and the vampires will roam unchecked among the countryside, no doubt turning unsuspecting village after village. I have heard of several dark lords, but this could only be Orcus. His name sends shivers down my spine. I am not sure if the others are aware of Orcus and his past deeds. The books write many tales of his deeds, and dark indeed they are. Let us pray the witches can provide some assistance in locating these children, for our own efforts have so far been futile.

-Ritherdal

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