Friday, October 23, 2015

Under a Dark Sun: Session 20

Session 20: (play-by-post, 10/12/15 - 10/19/15)

Adventure name: Veiled Threats / Relic Hunt

Current PCs / NPCs
Grom Dunestalker - Half-Giant Psionic Warrior (PC)
Sadiria - Half-Elf Wilder (NPC)
Russk - Mul (stated as a Half-Orc) Fighter (NPC)
Thrassos Haruk - Human Driud (NPC)

Due to RL complications, we've moved this game from "in person" to emails.  It's going much smoother now.

When we last check in with our "heroes", they had successfully bartered for new gear in the Urik's Elven Market, and had an invitation to meet a mysterious contact at The Angry Giant tavern.

The Angry giant is a two story building, with an ale house on the lower floor and apartments above.

The party enters and seats themselves at one of the tables; the bar is fairly empty at this time of day.  When the waitress comes back with their order, she also sets down a wrapped bundle, and says to them: ‘Welcome to our fine establishment, please take this as our token of appreciation.  Don’t open it here, its bad luck.'

Grom asks the waitress about the "friend" he made in the market. "Have you seen him around?"

"Nope; sorry deary." she says.

The group waits all day for their ‘friend’ to arrive, but sees no one matching his description.  That night, as they return to their rooms, Grom recalls the ‘present’.  Opening the bundle, they see that it is an Urikite-style ceramic pot, with a repeating geometric design and a bright red pair of lips.  Once the pot is revealed, the lips begin to move and say: ‘Take this pot to Potters Court and deliver it to a dwarf named Hammnar One-Eye.’  They recognize the voice as that of their 'friend', the young man who helped them earlier in the Elven Market.

They rest the night, because (quote): "Why waste a good bed?". In the morning Grom rewraps the pot and takes it to Potters Court. The group sits outside a likely-looking shop for a couple of hours watching the door and customers, keeping an eye out for anything "weird".

Potters Court is a neighborhood, filled (~75%) with the homes and/or shops of potters.  It's brutally hot all day, and even hotter at night (when they all run their kilns).

Sadly, despite the group's excellent location and well-connected asking around, they do not see the man they are looking for.

As the red sunlight finally begins to dim, marking the end of another day, a woman approaches the group.  They have seen her off and on throughout the day, perusing the various vendor’s wares.  She approaches Grom and says: ‘That pot!  It’s JUST what I’m looking for.  Sell it to me, won’t you?  How much do you want for it, 2 silvers?’”

Grom is immediately suspicious, as the pot is still wrapped so there is no way she knows what it might look like. He enters the closet shop, searching for the owner.

The owner is inside.  He's an old man with a limp and a rheumy eye.  He greets Grom and asks "How can I help you?"  However, the woman follows Grom into the shop.  “Oh, i can just TELL that I’ll love it; it’s already wrapped and everything!. I simply must have it, it’s too exquisite!  Surely you take 3 gold for it, won’t you?”  she says.

Grom tells the woman that: "I am under strict instructions to deliver this package to the dwarf Hammer One-eye." He then asks the proprietor of the shop: "If he is said dwarf or if he knows where they can find him?"

"Well, I never!" the woman says, then she stomps off.  The owner says that he is NOT this Hammer One-eye, and has never heard of him.   The party heads back to the inn for the night.  On your way back to the inn, an old dwarf with one eye steps out of a shadowy alley and says to the group: “I’m Hammnar One-Eye and I hear you have something for me.”

Grom hands over the package and asks: "What is this is all about?"

The dwarf winks at him and says: “You passed the test.  You showed determination and will power in staying at the square all day, despite no progress in your endeavor, and you showed restraint when you did not succumb to greed in selling the package.  You're just the sort of people we need.  We’ll be in touch.”  The party decides to return to the inn and rest for the night.

The party remains at the Angry Giant for several days, hoping ot hear from their mysterious contact again, but no one comes by for them. They decide to move on to other tasks.  They head off to this Green Age ruin, for which they have a vague map (it's a few days travel outside of the city).

Our protagonists manage to get out of   the city with a surprisingly small bribe and head out into the wastes.  After a 1/2 day's journey, the party leaves the road and are guided to their destination by only their sense of direction and vague map.  After several hours, they realize the group is being stalked by some kind of wild beast.

They look for a good spot to defend themselves and maybe if the vanished gods are with them, set an ambush.

The party spots the creature at about 75 ft out.  It's stalking the group's trail, but hasn't spotted them yet.  Lying in wait behind a hill for it, they see a lizard-like quadruped with two tusks that are more than a foot long and eight eyes. The creature's back is covered in scales, but it's limbs and belly are covered in fur.  The party manages to get the jump on the beast (except for Russk).  Sadiria blasts the creature with a ray of freezing energy, and Grom uses a dorje to make his skin more resistant to blows.

Thrassos' companion Hemmer charges the creature biting it savagely, while Thrassos manages to crack the creature's skull with a stone from his sling.  Sadiria's wild, untrained psionics back-fire on her and leave her reeling for the moment, unable to do anything.

Grom moves up and stabs the creature while Russk also moves closer, throwing a javelin into the creature's side. Both fail to injure the monster, glancing off it's thick hide.

Thrassos and Hemmer attack the beast, wounding it.  But that just server to anger it further.  The creature rakes it's horrible 8-eyed gaze, leaving Thrassos just standing there, enthralled by the creature's terrible eyes. It then proceeds to tear into Hemmer with it's savage claws and bite. Grom charges his weapon with destructive physic energy and lands a terrific blow on the creature's spine.  Russk steps forward, drawing his longsword in the process and also cuts into the monstrosity.

The creature turns and tears into Russk, tearing the mul's hip wide open and then tearing at the wound further with it's bite.  Russk weathers the abuse well.  Sadiria targets the creature's one possible weak spot (it's mind) with her powers: a moment later, blood begins to pour out of the beast's eyes and nose; it begins to weave a bit on it's feet.  Grom tries to slay the beast, but his spear glances off the creature's thick hide.  Russk steps up and finishes the creature off with a quick blow.

The party pauses a moment to heal some of their wounds and them continues along their proscribed course.

Outstanding Plot Hooks:
Templar Mission 1: “Someone is selling contraband water, flouting the king’s laws.  This criminal must be dealt with – harshly, and their source of water identified.”
Templar Mission 2: “Go see what the Demesh family wants.  I’m too busy to deal with the petty concerns of the nobles.”
Is the party willing to risk exposure as escaped slaves in meeting with the Demesh family (their former owners), or will they try the temper of a templar?
What dangers and treasures await the party within the Green Age ruin?
Will they ever find the Green Age ruin?

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