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Campaign journalby RPGPundit
The group this time was Corwyn (C24 of Asterius); Alendalan (E10, Karameikan), Hathalon (E10, Alfheim), Galafilo (H8) and Li Ho (Mystic 6). The latter had played exactly one game several months back, had to quit for girlfriend related issues, and is now back!
The PCs are in Mar, having just heard of the invasion of the Master of Hule. They decide there's not much they can do about it and prepare to head to the Five Shires as they had planned, to clear out Galafilo's planned dominion hex. They're eager to get there before the 22nd of Eirmont, as its the winter festival then, and Halflings really know how to party.
But first, Corwyn travels up to Darokin city, to settle a few more details about his dominion construction. There, he is surprised with how militarised the city has become. He buys a +2 sling, and manages to get a dwarf to translate the runic inscription that was on the crown he'd found last adventure. turns out its the lineage and titles of a Dwarvish king who lived some two thousand years ago.
Meanwhile, Alendalan is sent back to Threshold by Galafilo (via teleport) to send money to Galafilo's clan who live there, and get them ready to travel to the five shires. He does so with little difficulty, visiting his own mom while she's there, and then heads back to Mar.
Meanwhile, Li Ho, the Ochalean monk, has heard that the Cleric Corwyn is back in Mar and decides to rejoin their party. He'd been briefly with them about three years ago. They welcome him back, and when Corwyn and Alendalan return the whole group travels to Sateeka.
They get there, with little incident, and Galafilo catches up with Delune, sheriff of Heartshire and his girlfriend. They actually got there a bit early and start spending a lot of money to contribute to the winter festival.
Alendalan at that point decides to play a practical joke. He buys a ton of cheap Karameikan wine back in threshold (again, teleporting), and fills them in nice bottles, into each of which he puts a drop of Brother Abelards Total P*ss-Up.
On the day of the festival, he hands them out to all the town, far and wide. Naturally, the party turns into an orgy of drunkenness and projectile vomiting very quickly. The whole party except Li Ho try to get laid (with all of them succeeding except Alendalan, who decides to try some of the Unction of Madness on himself and the elf girl he's seducing, and she goes nuts and tries to stab him to death). Li Ho, meanwhile, makes it clear that his vows do not include sobriety, and gets massively drunk along with the halflings.
By the next day it turns out that part of the town got wrecked in the drunken orgy, and three halflings died in drunkenness-related accidents. The other PCs figure out that Alendalan had spiked the wine, and get prepared to kill. Delune makes it clear he will face halfling justice. Alendalan, meanwhile teleported off to Darokin City, where he hires a crew of workmen to travel to Sateeka to undergo repairs.
The others are about to organise a search party, when Alendalan comes back and surrenders himself, handing over his spellbook and possessions and making it clear that he's willing to face justice and make reparations. Corwyn casts raise dead on the halflings, and Delune says his judgement will be in two weeks, once the halflings are fully healed.
In the two weeks, the other PCs practice their weapon skills, except for Hathalon who makes a Wand of Mindmasking, and Galafilo who spends his time boinking Delune. Finally, the trial comes, Alendalan admits guilt and takes responsibility, and as a result the Halflings are lenient. They sentence him to three kicks in the balls, one from each of the resurrected halflings!
A few days and several icepacks later the PCs are ready to go clear Galafilo's hex at long last. The Darokinian clean-up crew have arrived, and they bring the terrible news that Akesoli has fallen to the forces of the Master of Hule.
Corwyn does a Commune, and determines that the Master would be far too powerful for the PCs to try to assassinate, so they decide not to do anything about this for now, hoping that the legions of Darokin will be able to regroup and stop the Master at Ft. Anselbury.
The PCs head off to the hex, and start their scouring. They first run into a band of hill giants, that they make short work of. The next day, its a 12-headed Hydra, that Alendalan turns into a shrubbery.
After that, its some stone giants.
That night, the PCs are attacked by a pair of grizzly bears. They kill them off easily, and the metal-detecting sword detects no metal, but Hathalon wants to track them to their lair anyways. The rest of the party doesn't, and he ends up going that way alone.
He travels a very long distance, and eventually finds their cave in a hill. The cave has nothing in it, but once there he notices a second cave. Meanwhile, Alendalan has been following him. Hathalon was about to head back when Alendalan shows up, and they decide to check out the second cave using Alendalan's wizard eye. Inside the cave, they see three Frost Salamanders!
Alendalan sends in a conjured Fire Elemental. They hear some fighting noises, and then Alendalan sense the elemental is destroyed. He reactivates the wizard eye, and sees the salamanders rushing up toward them. He launches a fireball at them, but they keep coming, and start cutting the two elves to bits!
They fly out of reach with Alendalan's Sylvan Surfboard of flying, and bombard the Frost Salamanders with some more fireballs and magic missiles, and the salamanders retreat back into their cave. They fly back in on the offensive, and a strategic fireball into the cave kills one of the three salamanders. But the other two charge, and manage to drop Alendalan. Hathalon manages to revive him and the two flee for their lives!
They get to the camp, Corwyn heals them up and the next day they head over there to kick salamander ass. The battle is over pretty quick (the two remaining salamanders were pretty wounded) and the PCs find some treasure, including a potion. Alendalan tries to analyse it and almost dies, as it turns out to be a potion of poison! Fortunately he makes his save.
The PCs continue scouring the hex, and find their way to a forest where they run into a group of Treants. The Treants are friendly, but are curious as to why the Halfling is in their forest. They explain in torturously slow common how by ancient accord with the halflings, this forest is their territory. The hills above the forest are not, however, and Galafilo gets their blessing to put his dominion there. They leave the very very slow talking Treants on good terms.
Travelling on a ways, they run into a band of Centaurs on the hills. These centaurs are surprised to see Galafilo too. THEY explain how by ancient accord with the halflings, these are THEIR hills. Galafilo finds himself screwed.
But finally they work out that the road that crosses this hex belongs to neither the treants nor the Centaurs, and since Galafilo wanted to have a kind of merchant-stop-over town/wilderness fort, the road area would be an adequate place to put his dominion. The PCs thank the Centaurs and move on.
They start scouring the road area, when they suffer an aerial bombardment from some flying rocks. There are two Frost Giants with their Polar Bear pets, shouting at them that the road is THEIR property, by ancient accord with the halflings, and to get the hell out of there!
But at this point the PCs are no longer willing to buy that line, and Galafilo shouts back, "who did you make the accord with?"
The Frost Giants look at each other, seem to be thinking, and finally one of them says, "ummm.. with a sheriff.. yea.. some sheriff guy.."
The PCs realise the giants are full of it, and the elves blast out a few fireballs. The polar bears all die, and the frost giants scream "they ain't buying it!! Run away!!!" and try to run for it.
The PCs pursue them aerially, and a well placed Barrier spell by Corwyn drops the giants. They Find The Path back to the Frost Giant's giant house, and collect the loot, including a scroll that has the Steelform spell, a legendary Girdle of Giant Strength, and another potion... which Alendalan tries to analyse and AGAIN almost dies because its once again a potion of poison!
The PCs have at this point finished the scouring of the hex, and head back home to Sateeka. When they get there, they learn that the Darokinian army has suffered a massive defeat at Fort Anselbury, and that the Master's army is now marching to Akorros. If Akorros fall, nothing will stand between the Master and central Darokin!
The PCs realise that now they must do something to help Darokin, or the entire country, and Corwyn's future dominion, will fall.
At this point, the game ends for the night.
Corwyn is now 25th level. The others haven't gone up.