Catch up on our games from the eyes of the players themselves!
I can deal with the constant fighting, the lying companions and the hateful “allies” we are supposed to make. I have also learned to accept that those we are saving will never appreciate what we do for them, or indeed even respect us as people. The one thing which truly makes me want to give up, however, is that red clown thing. I cannot fathom what function it serves other than annoying us, as it certainly isn’t humor. After our fight with some local fauna it appeared, said some things, and then left. I will not validate its existence by discussing it further.
When we did manage to settle for food we decided to have an important conversation about trust. Let none say that when this group inevitably collapses into a chaotic and mistrustful mess that I didn’t try to stop it. The doctor claims she cannot trust us because of her past, while the snake selfishly seeks revenge for some prior infraction and will also trust no one. Lack of trust is not a strength, their burdens are a sign of true emotional weakness. Weakness does not win wars.
Why don’t people understand, I don’t care who you are or what has happened in your past, and neither should you. It is irrelevant. All that matters is the present, and how we can save the future. You cannot allow your past to define you, lest you become a slave to it. In that respect, there is a certain irony that the rat from a subservient race is actually the most free out of all of our new companions.
When the conversation was no longer of value I made my leave to find some food for Dragon. One thing led to another and now I am in a void of perpetual twilight, floating in the ruins of a dead city and orbiting an all-consuming black abyss. This is an inconvenience. I have also encountered some tiny inhabitants of this place. Hopefully, these creatures will have greater emotional fortitude than the doctor and the snake.
The Island of Ice – Rowen
Have you ever stared into the face of a god? Well today I have and it had lots of eyes, but before I get too into myself here’s what happened. Today the group and I met this weird little dark fairy thing and even though I’ve never seen one I felt some sort of connection. I also saw a mammoth that was neat. We then went to the weird frozen ice shop and saw this like zombie halfling…she was nice, and I helped the old man halfling with a ritual where I decided to be helpful and turn into a snake…gods love snakes I think? Other than that we are voyaging on the high seas, and I really hope we don’t die…
The Mephit and the Maiden – Madoc
This bright world stands still for much too long, the hours grow long and the great firey disk seems to hang low, ambling through the sky unlike the fleeting bands of light that I’m used to, they are pulled into the darkness should they delay, unlike this lazy ‘sun.’
I was musing on the comfort of adrenaline; for the monotonous cruise had dulled my senses and nothing had engaged us until a flock of seabirds took offense to the mutable one. While he embarrassed himself and the labyrinth dweller meditated I set about ensuring one of the smaller vessels could be utilized. Then the Tabaxi let out a cry, another ship on the horizon, an opportunity.
We observed their crew casting offerings into the ocean; coins, trinkets, food, goods. The shifter, Rowen explained the custom and that in Bakanuwa’s territory treasure hunters give a tithe to the waves though stealing their ship was fair game. After some debate, it was decided that a trade would be a better way of dealing with them than aggression but we had naught but the contents of a small chest we had yet to open. I tried to open the chest and was assailed by chains that held fast until some deliberation with Calcifer a fire mephit that felt blighted by the old ones agreed to serve us if we helped him expand his elemental form.
Once the molten imp had found new form as an iron drake at the stern of the ship and was quiet for a bit our attention was drawn to a ship in the distance, the last offering was a maiden hurled from the deck and swiftly sinking. I followed as Rowen and Stillwater charged off to break their own rules and bring that which was cast away aboard our own ship. It was then that the undead monstrosity revealed it’s true nature and started attacking with fell strength and strange hair-nonsense. I landed blow after blow but each seemed to dull against its profane flesh, the silver tentacles of the moon’s rays that Rowen called down showed the extent of its ghastly form and Stillwater was able the wrestle the creature into the waiting maw of Calcifer.
With the creature vanquished and my two floundering crewmates brought back from the brink I set about reasoning why this thing still haunted the world, I suspected a talisman similar to the halfling Bessie’s would be to blame. Upon discovering a locket I asked Stillwater if it was a symbol of the old ones or held any value, the old fool Belgin took it and threw it away as offering “A tithe for receiving the body of the zombie” or some such idiocy. Rejecting this I dove into the waves and reclaimed the locket.
The curse took effect suddenly and locked me into a moment of my past I thought I had stowed away and made peace with, losing six members, half of them blood and knowing that the costly decision I had made was the right one. Eventually, Bakanuwa released me, I suppose she thought I had learned a lesson or that my resolve was shaken by this.
Upon returning to the ship, and despite Stillwater and Rowen offering ‘aid’ we discussed that we had learned nothing, Bakanuwa is an unknowable mistress that is as fickle as the tide and it’s pointless to try to make sense of this bright world.
At the behest of Calcifer we now head towards a nearby island seeking another probably mad zealot that will explain how to free him, we travel as aimlessly as the sun it seems.
A few of the ever-changing laws of the old ones that I have fallen afoul of:
Leave that which is cast away beneath the waves
Chests guarded by mephits are out of bounds
The grave-bound are mercurial and kept ‘alive’ by the old ones
Survival of the old ones’ followers is of little consequence
The Freezing Forest – Still Water
We found ourselves tested upon an island. By day warm and beautiful, by night a cold that bites..that hunts. A simple fire could not keep it at bay, four trees had to burn to help us get through the night. We climbed to a lighthouse, source of the cold. Little voidborn was drawn into a trap trying to steal. I laughed..a little. Talked to golden gnome inside, he knows Belgin. Must learn more, why so deadly a defense for an island in the middle of nowhere? Curious.
An excerpt from the manuscript Memoirs of a Kingslayer Chapter 3- The Flood
Another room, another victory. This was closer than I’d like, 3 buttons in 3 places made it clear the intent was to force us to split up. It was effective enough, Tertius and Suhn’vel to one side, Falriel and Lucan at the other, I pressed the center button myself. This caused the room to begin filling with water, and beasts and undead began to form from the foamy sea water. Basilisks, beholderkin, mummies, and another beast I’ve not seen before, quilled and hungry. At first, things looked dire but as we began to meet toward the middle the tide of battle turned. Lucan was nearly turned to stone, Suhn’vel was separated the longest, by the time I found her in the tail end of the battle she’d somehow climbed the central brazier. Falriel fell briefly but was restored by the grace of whatever god Lucan worships. Tertius being..not of tall stature, had a terrible time in the water. As for myself, I took the opportunities I could to deliver my assault, alternating from spell to bow to sword as necessary. When all was done, we stood..weary and bloodied..but of our own accord. As a sidenote it seems the magics of the arena are not completely infallible, I drew a penalty by continuing to move after we were meant to be paralyzed. I must not do that again. Let them forget..this may prove important later.
Thoughts of Tertius lavius Hilarius of the Twin Shires – Mirror’d Light
“I don’t understand how it could come to this…
I’ve been doing everything in the arena to the best of my abilities and yet, even though he’s not here, I feel the staring gaze of my king upon me. Just as if he expected more of me like he always does.
More blood. More brutality. More death. Always more.
Sometimes I even felt like I was not in command of my own actions. Just like an ordinary cultist, slaughtering everything in his path, possessed by his twisted god.
I feel weak.
With every step I take, I can feel the cold grasp of the dirt beneath my feet pulling me closer and closer.
Is it supposed to end like this?”
A piece of rotten tomato dribbles down his neck, clearing his mind in an instant.
“Driven to the brink of insanity by a gem puzzle? What kind of career ending would that be?
I, the one who struck down the mighty Minotaur of Tharinar, defeated by some shiny stones?!
My King is the only one who decides my fate, and anyone who dares to deny my king the right to see my death shall be sent to the dust in a storm of blood and gore!
Report by Keeva
Dealing with Deheart is much like playing chess. Or a tango. I do love a good dance, and Deheart has proven himself a worthy partner. Signed my name in blood. My impression of him has changed, and that is rather hard to do. However, if you have skin in the game, you stay in the game…I plan on gifting him three trinkets of the goddess…from my personal collection. I bargained for two…a third will be a gift of a professional union. A political wedding gift, more or less. It is time to join our two factions. Perhaps he and I both can get what we want.
Tegan has returned. I am gladdened by this reunion with her. She is a very clever person. She can help me navigate people better. Arthur…I am still concerned about him. I can only hope he is okay with his new eye color. It’s flattering really.
Jester turned my jelly babies into wriggling things. Foul. However, even with his tricks, I worry for him. I see cracks in his jolly face…Perhaps being in the game too long wears us down. Perhaps he needs a holiday.
One last note…since we are going to the Dead Lands, I have left a will for Jester to find. I do not wish my Mother to find out…Too much is at stake here. My Successor is named there…They will know what to do.
Day 7 / 8 – Monty:
Endurance is one of the most difficult disciplines, but it is to the one who endures that the final victory comes. That is what I have been taught, as a monk. I accept this practice and meditate upon the teachings given to me. I think outwardly towards my companions. Can they learn this lesson? I hope to guide them as I hope they will guide me. We all face difficult times ahead.
I am saddened by Salazar’s betrayal. My heart is burdened with that, and one day, we all must confront him. It is a day I do not look forward to. I regarded him as a teacher, a Master I could learn under. Now, his thoughts and heart intend to poison others. Justification must be delivered in this respect.
The Tomb was a place of reverence…The Guardian I finished was prayed over by myself, to send back to its maker.
Before that…I heard whispers…a warning, perhaps a taunt, towards my fears. Losing control over these gifts of fire is a secret not many knows. My fear of destroying everything around me threatens to erupt…I must meditate further on this. In the meantime, my tattoo burns an angry sunset red. It also has cast doubts I believe, into my companions minds about me. I cannot blame them, and why should I? It is what it is.
A Void Fey appeared in the Tomb as well. Spoke riddles of us dying. Naturally, we all die. It is rather unavoidable…perhaps in the manner in which we die is the sport it seeks. I fail to understand this logic. There is no sport in watching people die. Death should be honored and held in reverence, not mindlessly thrown about.
Lastly, I will meditate upon Jezza. Personal conflict will lead to an irrational mind. Her mother is a rather sour spot on the Dear Bard’s mind and heart…I do not wish her to fall into a dark place. With Jester saving her father, Jezza will have to make an impossible choice, one I can only hope will be correct. It is not easy to take a life, nor is it easy to spare it when that life belongs to someone who has betrayed your trust. What path she chooses is one she can walk with us part of the way…however, she will eventually have to walk it alone. I can only hope she is ready when that time comes.
I knew I was unbalanced when I spurned Lilliana and rose to her bait. She may not realize it, but she did teach me a lesson, even as I threw her to the ground. I’m struggling and becoming untethered. I hope the bruises I earned today remind me of what I have done to Lilliana, as a reminder of needing to be patient. Her jabs about my father have cut deep. Deeper than I thought…I had hoped to move pass the taunts, the questions about myself…but they keep coming back. Perhaps I need to confront them at long last.
The others in my group have made way in their paths if a bit messy. We gained a few new, smaller companions. A unicorn hamster, and an air genie that insists to follow me about. I’m…delighted.
Our rouge has made my father furious…I am…pleased a bit. Father could use someone to match wits with. A clever rouge, or a reckless one…I have yet to see.
The Kyrella and Tempest seemed to come at an impasse. About what, they will have to tell me…I had taken our most unbalanced member away to read. She used magic against me…it was odd. Perhaps I scared her…Perhaps we need to reunderstand our roles here. I cannot teach that doesn’t want to be taught.