The Lost Lands

A Spectre of the Past

The party set off from Hommlet and headed back to re-enter the Temple. Almost immediately, a feeling of uneasiness settled on the group. About an hour outside of town, the party was stopped by a squad of Etrusean soldiers. They demanded the immediate surrender of Haek for alleged crimes that he committed against Etrusea as a soldier. The soldiers revealed that they had been searching for Haek for several months. After a brief parley, a skirmish began. The Etrusean soldiers deployed in typical military fashion, a stout shield-wall with long spearman forming a second rank and archers well behind. Moving in a straight line, the solders advanced with grim determination. Kaleb, Haek, Bricker, and the bugbears Zook and Oni moved forward while Aldoron unslung his bow and began a deadly rain of death.
The Etrusean archers archers answered in kind, their sheaf arrows finding Aldoron with deadly accuracy. Aldoroan slumped over, dead.

The rest of the party rallied forth, Kaleb and Haek anchoring the line against the Etrusean onslaught. Bricker’s daggers began to find their mark, and Zook and Oni’s halbards began to cleave holes in the once-solid Etrusean shield-wall. The Etrusean line began to falter and the Etrusean archers turned tail and began to flee, knowing that sure death waited for them. One soldier was captured alive, quickly questioned, and released to find his way back to his fellow soldiers, unarmed and morale shattered.

The party escorted Aldoron’s body back to Hommlet where the local clergy performed another expensive miracle and resurrected Aldoron. After allowing several weeks for Aldoron’s recovery, the party set off for the Temple again. It was agreed that the bugbears would stay outside the temple and watch the party’s supplies and pack animals.

Upon reaching the Temple, the party discovered the damage that they had done earlier to get into the temple repaired. The descended once again into the first level under the evil church and picked up exploring it’s dark secrets where they had left off before.

Finding a locked door in their way, the party began to loudly force their entry into the room that lay beyond. After breaking the door in their path open, the party discovered an empty room before them. Looking at the damaged door behind them, a peephole was discovered. Another door led from the empty room. The party proceeded. After forcing their way into the next room, the party saw a group of 8 gnolls armed and ready for battle with long spears. One gnoll stood by two torches, the others around the room next to a large shelf which ran the length of the room.

Kaleb and Haek ran into the room. The gnoll by the two torches reached up and pulled a rope which dropped a weighted net over the two warriors. The other gnolls reached for vials of oil on the shelf and hurled them at the entrapped victims. Oil splashed over Kaleb and Haek. Bricker and Aldoron moved to aid the netted fighters. The gnoll by the torches threw one into the oil, and flames erupted over Haek and Kaleb, burning them. The two struggled with their swords and began to cut their way out. Bricker and Aldoron fired into the room. The gnolls swung mercilessly at Kaleb and Haek trying to kill them outright. Haek and Kaleb finally cut their way free and Bricker rushed into the room, dagger and shortsword promising quick death for the gnolls. Gnoll after gnoll fell, and the one by the torch made a run for the door which led from this grisly room. It escaped to the room beyond.

The party charged head-long after the runaway gnoll. The next room beyond revealed a secret door that the gnoll had apparently ran through. The party immediately followed the runner into yet another room. This one was occupied by the runner and two of it’s friends: ogres. Haek and Kaleb entered the room, Bricker on their heels and Aldoron’s bow covered their entry. Bricker was greeted with a heavy swing and connection, almost knocking him unconscious. The three foul-creatures were finally overcome. While searching the chambers, Bricker discovered a magical Longtooth dagger. The party decided to carry out their treasure to their base camp where Zook and Oni were and rest there.

After an uneventful night, the party re-entered the Temple, and found the leader of the previous two ogres. After dispatching him, the party entered into an L-shaped room with some gnoll occupants. The gnolls were easily defeated and the party became interested in a large fireplace in the room. Aldoron looked up into the fireplace with his infravison and saw some item of note about 20 feet up inside the chimney of the fireplace. Bricker entered quickly and scaled the walls of the chimney and found a large diamond resting on a small outcrop. He grabbed it, and a large grate slid across the chimney cutting off his descent. A large rumbling could be heard overhead. Dust and soot began to fall down on Bricker as he lowered himself down on the grate and tried to bend the bars. Unsuccessful, he called for help from below. Aldoron spied a large stone buttress scraping down the chimney, headed directly for the trapped halfling. Taking out his rope, Bricker tied his grappling hook to it, hooked it solidly on the grate and lowered the rope. The rest of the party grabbed the rope and pulled with all their might, bending the bars of the grate and allowing Bricker to tumble down to the fireplace and safely into the room.

Wanting to lead the way, Aldoron decided that he would break through the next locked door the party encountered. Using his brute force, he forced himself into the next room…straight into a deadly quadruple crossbow. A smiling gnoll pulled the trigger and a flurry of crossbow bolts flew into Aldoron and Kaleb, who was directly behind him. The gnoll was not alone however. Human soldiers were also in the room and they deployed to defend themselves. Hearing the ruckus of battle, the leader of the humans stormed into the room. He threw a javelin of lightning, which went wide of it’s mark, and then closed with a scimitar of speed in hand. After a fierce fight, all of the denizens of the temple were overcome and the party left for the surface yet again.

Elapsed game time: 29 days

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Into the Temple of Elemental Evil

Three weeks passed since the assault on the moat house. During this time the party took time to recover from their wounds (and resurrections) and split the loot that they had acquired up to this point. They also used this time to practice and train their skills.

A mysterious elven stranger appeared at the Inn of the Welcome Wench and seemed very interested in Aldoron. She tried to kill Aldoron when she got him alone, then failing at that, used powerful magic on him for an unknown purpose. Come morning, she had vanished like fog on a warm and clear sunny morning, but she did finally give Aldoron a copy of his precious….magic missle. The party also agreed to arm Zook and Oni and invite them to come along to the temple.

The party set off for the temple, with the bugbears Zook and Oni in tow. After a matter of some debate, the party left Oni in charge of the horses at a safe distance from the temple proper and entered the dreaded building. The initial entry into the foul edifice was uneventful but the scenes of evil depicted on the building’s walls only added to the sense of dread. Several large bronze doors were encountered and the feelings of hopelessness that these magical doors emanated brought the confidence of the party to an all-time low. Finally descending into the lower levels, the party encountered their first resistance from the denizens that resided there.

A large number of undead – ghouls and ghasts – seemed to be placed throughout the first dungeon level of the complex. In the face of stiff resistance, the party seemed on the verge of collapsing when Zook rallied forth, mighty halberd in hand, and defended his new friends. During a heated battle with 4 ghasts, Bricker managed to drink his potion of undead control and command the foul creatures to do his bidding.

Exhausted and spent, the party headed back for Hommlet, a tad bit wiser and richer.

Elapsed game time: 22 days

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A Time of Trials

The characters made their way back to the moat house, wiser and a bit more experienced after re-supplying themselves. They cautiously made their descent down the stairs leading to the underground portion of the moat house, where Kaleb Dunn drew the attention of two green slimes. After a bit of uncertainty of how to deal with the creatures, Bricker Longfellow lit a torch and Kaleb finally managed to douse the creatures with oil. Bricker promptly lit the oil and the two monstrosities met a fiery doom, but not before Kaleb’s sword and armor were ruined by the acid from the slimes. A return trip to Hommlet followed where Kaleb re-equipped himself.

It was mid-afternoon by the time the party returned to the moat house. They once again went down the stairs leading underground. After a bit of searching, a horde of zombies fell upon the party. Haek managed to shield-rush one of the fell abominations with much force. As the battle ensued, Bricker stumbled upon a valuable peridot which he hid away for a rainy day.

The exploring continued underground, and Bricker stumbled upon some fresh drops of blood on the floor. Aldoron Lumiere used his acute elven senses and discovered a hidden door in a pillar. The door led down into a dark shaft out of sight with iron rungs attached to the wall. After some discussion, the party descended down the shaft. Haek and Bricker found themselves in a tightly-enclosed space. Bricker found a secret door and opened it which attracted the attention of four ghouls on the other side. They rushed in a fit of hunger and anger. Bricker called upon Brandobaris and climbed back up into the dark shaft. One ghoul forced itself into the small chamber and struck Haek. The blow paralyzed him. Kaleb fell down on the ghoul, his blades leading the way, and dispatched the foul thing. Another ghoul struck Kaleb and he found himself also paralyzed. The ghouls reached through the small opening and began to drag Kaleb outside into the main room, intent on feeding. Bricker climbing down through the shaft, made his way into the main room, and began to defend Kaleb. Haek regained control of his limbs and rushed out. Aldoron climbed down into the small room and began attacking.

After dispatching the ghouls, the party searched the burial crypts, found the ghouls’ nest, and took off down the hallway. The party found a false door and opened it, which resulted in a huge portcullis slamming shut somewhere else in the dungeon. The portcullis cut off the main route back to the surface and alerted the denizens of the dungeons that company had arrived. A group of gnolls prepared for attack as the party entered their lair. After a pitched battle, the gnolls were defeated and looted.

The party then camped in a small alcove. During the night, sounds coming from the hallway woke the party. After a brief search for the cause of the unknown noise, the party headed off to explore more of the dungeon. A false door was discovered again and another portcullis fell somewhere in the dungeon, and a group of bugbears surprised the party as they were busy searching for loot and secret doors. A deadly battle ensued and the final two bugbears surrendered to the characters. One bugbear – Zook –promised to aid the party if his life was spared. He and his cohort, Oni , were forced to live in the moat house by the evil Master. After a brief discussion, Zook and Oni agreed to lead the Master and his guards to the characters so they could ambush them.

During the initial assault, the players quickly overwhelmed the guards and Bricker managed to keep the Master busy by disturbing his casting. In a fit of rage, the Master struck Bricker with his staff of striking, killing him instantly. Haek and Kaleb closed to avenge the death of their comrade, along with Zook and Oni.. The Master managed to get off a hold person spell which rendered those around him incapable of moving except for Oni. With deadly precision, Aldoron took aim with his bow and fired the killing shot on the Master.

The players looted the quarters of the Master and his guards, and with heavy backpacks, they headed back to Hommlet . Bricker was raised by the clergy in Hommlet for a considerable cost. The players promised to return to the moat house and get Zook and Oni for any future treasure-hunting endeavors.

Game Time Elapsed: 2 days

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Welcome to Hommlet

The characters made their way to Hommlet . While enroute, they were attacked by 4 bandits that they defeated. One bandit had an interesting tattoo. After arriving at the village and securing a room for the night, the characters played an instrumental role in defeating a force of bugbears that had attacked the local moneychanger’s business.

The group learned that the strange tattoo that they had seen earlier was a symbol of the Temple of Elemental Evil from Melubb, the moneychanger. The next day Aldoron Lumiere went to the local heroes tower and tried to secure another copy of magic missle, which he failed to successfully copy into his spellbook.

The village had a council meeting later that evening and the village fathers decided to send a force to protect some outlying farms from further attacks while the player characters were asked to investigate a local moathouse that once served as an outpost for the Temple.

The following day at the moathouse, the party was attacked by 6 giant frog before they entered. Kaleb Dunn was pulled into the pool the frogs lived in and almost sank in the mud. After exploring much of the upper level of the moathouse, the party encountered a group of bandits that offered an organized resistence until Aldoron Lumiere sealed their fate with a well-placed enlarge spell on a ceiling made of collapsed debris. Bricker Longfellow was caught trying to “protect” a valuabe goblet which he surrendered to the party treasure pot. After exploring the top level of the moathouse and finding a staircase leading down to a lower level, the party returned to Hommlet where they split the treasure that they had obtained so far. Haek received a magic shield +1 that was obtained from the stomach of a gigantic lizard.

Game time elapsed: 3 days

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